Tame a Monster

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Chapter Twenty Five

Angeline POV

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I took a long hard look at my appearance, from my wild hair, oversize clothing, unfortunate height, to my red puffy eyes. I spent a good half hour just crying my eyes out in the girls restroom.

Why was I crying?

Because my painting for art just won first place and everyone congratulated me, they said the nicest things, and it was so foreign to hear anything positive coming to me from complete strangers.

But don’t misunderstand, these are not tears of happiness.

I hate this, I hate this so much.

I hate that I can’t even enjoy my own accomplishments anymore, because all I can hear is his voice tearing it to shreds. I hate that I agree with him. I hate that I still let them get to me. I hate that I can’t move on. I hate that I have this fear that Daniel will drop me once he sees how unspecial, ugly, burdensome I really am. I hate that I can’t go a day without deprecating myself.

But most of all. I’m tired, so unbelievably fucking tired. I’m tired of hating myself, I’m tired of the power they still have over me. I’m tired of always complaining but never doing anything about it.

But not today.

Today, I will be kind to myself.

Today, I will be patient.

Today, I am worthy.

Today, I will love myself.

If not for the rest of my life, then just for today.

I wipe away the tears from my face and give myself a minute to refresh. The last thing I want is anyone asking me what’s wrong. What would I even say to that? Instead I recount all the things I’m grateful for, my best friend Daniel, my dad’s success at his new position, my art genuinely winning first place. These are all things I should be happy about. Next I remind myself of the things I should look forward to, finally graduating high school, traveling with Daniel, and living my ever-loving best life. I was ready for change.

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After Daniel confessed to me what he really was, I could no longer see the world in the same light. I just couldn’t wrap my head around it, it just didn’t seem real.

If werewolves are real, then what else is?

These are people who look like you, talk like you, act like you, that fly under your nose, with you completely oblivious.

How many?

How many paranormal beings have I come across in my life? How many other werewolves? And if so, who?

I highly doubted it though, from what Daniel tells me, it’s pretty rare.

I know I should be scared. I know I should have run away screaming the minute I found out. It’s what any normal sane person would do.

But I don’t think I have anything to be scared of. I honestly couldn’t imagine Daniel ever trying to hurt me, and the mere thought of ending my friendship with my best friend felt like a punch to my gut.

I promised I’d always be there for him no matter what, and that included accepting him as he was.

“I forgot to tell you yesterday,” I said as we walked to my class.

“Tell me what?”

` “I got the job!”

“That’s awesome! See I knew you’d get it! You’re impossible to say no to. When do you start?”

“Today after school, the groomer’s is right by my house so I’ll make my way down there.”

“I’ll just take you there, it’s not like we have anywhere else to be after school.”

“Okay… if you insist.” I bumped him.

“At lunch instead of the cafeteria do you want to step out to eat?” He asked.

“Won’t the others wonder where we went?”

“I’ll just mention it through the mindlink.” He said nonchalantly.

“What’s a mindlink?”

“It’s a mental channel that is shared between pack members, we can’t exactly read each other’s minds but we can send messages using our thoughts.”

“Wow really?! That’s like... a superpower!”

“More like a mental walkie talkie,” he chuckled.

“Do werewolves harbor any superpowers?”

“Well besides our heightened speed, hearing, and strength, no, werewolves do not have any special powers. Except every so often a seer will be born. A seer is a girl blessed with the gift of seeing the future, but they too, are also very rare.”

“Oh,” was all I said.

At lunch, Daniel and I decide to get Chipotle.

“I have a question,” I asked as we sat in his car and ate our bowls and burritos.

“Shoot,” he said.

“Do any other supernatural beings exist? Like vampires, witches, mermaids, and Leprechauns?”

He laughed, “although some other supernatural beings do exist, I have never in my life met a Leprechaun.”

“Do vampires really drink blood?”

“Yea, they do, but you don’t ever have to worry about them here. Where there are werewolves, there are no vampires. Wolves, Witches, and Vamps are mortal enemies and werewolves are extremely territorial. We would never allow them to pillage in our streets.”

“That does put my mind to ease a little. But I’m curious… are werewolves allowed to date outside their race?”

“In truth… werewolves aren’t supposed to “date” at all. We’re supposed to wait for our mates. We’re supposed to save and give our mates our first everything. Dating before you meet your mate is just a very messy unnecessary situation and even punishable in some packs.”

“You mentioned mates before, what exactly is that?”

“Well for starters, we werewolves all follow the same religion, maybe not the same traditions, but always the same religion. We believe in the Moon Goddess, she is our species mother and creator. She, to ensure our survival, gifted each of us with a treasure… our soulmate.”

“But how would you know who that is?” I say confused.

“Well it starts with the scent so compelling and addictive it completely pulls you in. Then comes the actual pull itself, when your mate is near, you have this overpowering urge to find them. Once you do, then comes the overwhelming need to mark and claim them forever, they do this by biting the neck.”

I cringed and grimaced, that sounded pretty barbaric, but I didn’t say that out loud.

“It’s a very rushed process, mostly because resisting your mate is impossible.”

“So…” I said perturbed, ”you don’t get a choice? This person is chosen for you and you can’t control how you feel about them? What if they’re all wrong for you? Does that mean you can’t ever leave?”

“Leave?! You’ll never want to leave. Your mate isn’t going to just be some random person. The mate bond doesn’t work like a love potion or an arrow from cupid’s bow. This person isn’t just chosen for you, this person is literally made and created just for you. Your perfect half. They are who you would’ve chosen if you were human.”

“Huh,” I said absentmindedly.

The prospect of a mate was… intriguing to say the least. On one hand it sounded simply too good to be true. A fairy tale sort of thing, a part of me was even jealous I’ll admit. It sounded like the ultimate form of love. No doubts, no problems, no worries, just paradise. It appeared to be a deep and certain love that can’t be experienced on any human level, and it’d be nice to have something so definite like that.

But another part of me, the skeptical part, felt like it was some sort of forced marriage, with some entity pressuring you to feel things for someone who’s otherwise a complete stranger to you. Where’s the choice?

“So to answer your question… werewolves are allowed to mate with humans. That wasn’t the case a century ago though. Werewolves have been having human mates since the beginning of our existence, but they were executed if they gave in to the bond and fornicated with their humans. But a significant rise of human mates arose in the werewolf species, the Moon Goddess’s strategy to stop inbreeding.

“But when The Council deprived these wolves of their rightful mates, our Goddess did not allow any werewolf pups to be born within that time frame, it was the Her way of punishing the Elder Council for playing at being gods and undermining Her power. That’s when the Elder Council decided to withhold wolves from their mates was too cruel, and the laws were quickly changed.” Daniel said and then shook his head, “never challenge The Moon, it’ll never end well for you, that’s what that taught me.”

“But… doesn’t that mean… that you have a soulmate out there waiting for you?” I meant to say it in a teasing voice but instead it came out strained. Why does my heart feel so heavy?

He smiled weakly at me, “I’ll never have a mate.”

“Why not?”

“Because she’s dead.”

“You already met her?”

“No, I’ve never met her, I don’t even know what she looks like.”

“Then how do you know she’s dead?”

“Because I felt her die. I felt her die when I was only eight.” He quietly, then gradually lifted his hand and pulled up his sleeve to expose his wrist.

On his wrist was this strange scarring, yet it was pretty symmetrical and if you looked at it from a certain angle, it almost looked like it spelled something out.

And that’s when I realize… that I have never once seen Daniel in a short sleeve shirt before. I just assumed long sleeves were his thing. It never once occurred to me that he wore them to hide something underneath.

“This is the only thing I know about her, her name was Mia.” Studying it closer, I realize that it did spell out Mia, but something about this marking looked very familiar.

“She could’ve been from anywhere in this world, here, Europe, Asia, I dunno… and I never will.”

“You felt her death?”

“Yea, and it was the most horrible and painful experience of my life. It wasn’t just physical, but mental and emotional as well. Imagine being an eight-year-old and wishing you were dead, anything to join them, anything to make the void go away.”

My eyes widened in shock.

“And yet people consider me ‘lucky’,” he spat out. “Lucky that she passed before I knew her, for if it happened after I claimed her and finalized the bond, death would’ve taken me too.”

I gasped, a world without my best friend was not a world worth living in.

“This is why I can’t fit in with the others. They’ll never understand it. And I’m sick and tired of all the pitying looks, they treat me like I’m damaged. I feel fucking damaged. I won’t be able to secure my bloodline and as far as my father’s concerned, that makes me a failure and a disappointment.”

“No you’re not.”

“According to him I am… I’ll never be anything in comparison to my cousin.”

“I don’t know who your cousin is, but I know he can’t hold a candlelight to you.” I took his face in my hands and looked him straight in the eyes, “you are single-handedly the greatest person I have ever met.”

My voice, my conviction, didn’t waver once.

“Likewise Cat Lady,” he whispered softly. I could feel his breath hit my lips.

I don’t know how long we stayed like that. One of us almost… daring the other to do something.

We jump apart when we hear a loud knock on the window. Turning around to look, we see that it’s Daniel’s best friend.

Daniel lets a huff but ultimately lowers the window.

Trey, a good friend of Daniel, has a mischievous smirk on his face. “What are you guys dooooooing?”

“Need something, Trey?” Daniel says, annoyed.

“We were just wondering where you guys went.”

“You know I mindlin-” Daniel cut himself off.

Oh right, I’m not supposed to know anything.

Daniel and Trey then proceed to have a conversation with their eyes which I can only guess is the mindlink taking effect.

“Right right,” Trey said, surrendering, “I forgot you told us that.”

“Sure,” Daniel glared, totally unconvinced. Trey just grinned and sauntered off.

Nosey little shite.

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