A Sudden Change

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Chapter 6. Colt

I crawl out from under the steps and stretch. The sun is just rising and I can hear Shae moving inside the cabin. I take a moment to listen to her and when I am satisfied she is okay, I quietly sneak across the yard and into the woods. I do not like the thought of leaving her, especially with the rogue near, but I need to get back to the pack house and tell Talon what I’ve learned concerning the rogue. How dare he think she’s his rightful mate. I will have to meet her in my human form before he has a chance to do the same. Even though I have no doubt in the connection I feel towards Shae, I want to make sure he does not even have the slightest of chances at getting close to her. As I’m running through the woods, thinking over all of this, I decide to go into Brooke’s Grill tonight and hopefully run into Shae there. Especially since I’d prefer to not jump in front of her car again at our next encounter.

“He wouldn’t tell you why he was on our land?” Talon ask after hearing me relay what happened with the rogue.
I shake my head and add, “He also thinks Shae is his mate” Talon’s eyes widen at this. “He was acting as if he could smell the same scent I can when we first confronted each other in her yard”.
Talon sighs and pinches the bridge of his nose with his fingers, something he usually does when frustrated. He looks back at me after a moment. “We need to figure more out on this wolf. I’m going to go call around to a few more of the surrounding packs. Now that we at least have a description of him that may help identify him” Talon says. He starts to turn and walk away when he turns back facing me “Don’t forget to talk to one of the Elders about your little mate,” he finishes before walking away, as if I wouldn’t remember to do that.

There are seven elders in my pack. I’m not particularly close to any of them except two. John Willis and his mate Corrine. You see, John is my fathers brother. He and Corrine took me in when I was seven after my parents died. My throat tightens as emotion takes over me. My father had challenged a former Alpha for the position and had unfortunately lost. With the pain of losing him, my mother could not handle the grief and just five short days later died as well. Once mated, shifters cannot love without the other. Our minds become checked out, our bodies stop functioning properly and eventually we pass on as well. Other pack members try to tend to the surviving mate however they never recover as the pain of the loss is too much.
I sigh loudly and decide I better find John and/or Corrine. I walk out of the pack house, a building we use for meetings and such, and make my way down the gravel path to John and Corrine’s home. It is a short walk so I don’t bother using one of the pack vehicles that stay parked at the pack house.
The small brick home comes into view and see Corrine sitting on the rocking chair on the front porch. A wide smile breaks out of her face when she sees me walking up the path towards her.
“Hello my sweet boy .” She says softly as she pushes her silver hair off her shoulder. Her gray eyes show the love she has for me and a smile takes over my face. I hop onto the porch and lean down to give her a hug. I take a seat on the top step and turn my body to face her.
“Is uncle John here?”
“He’s inside,” she pauses “John! Come out here, Colt is here!” She yells then smiles once more at me.
“Hey Colt,” John says as he comes out of the old screen door and takes a seat in the other rocking chair. “I stopped by your place last night but I suppose I missed you.” He says which, is his way of asking what I was up to.
“Yeah you missed me.” I scratch the back of my neck as I think about how to go about this. Might as well just get it over with. “I actually didn’t come back to my house last night.” I pause for a moment then add, “I actually found my mate last night.” I look up to see their reactions. Ofcourse they both look estatic about my news. Before they can start talking I continue. “However there’s an issue. She’s human,” I pause again to gauge their reactions. Corrine raises her eyebrows in shock and John’s smile falters a little. His brown eyes go from showing his happiness to becoming serious. “Also, it seems that the rogue Talon and I have been chasing thinks she is his mate also,” I relay what all happened between me and the rogue last night. I look between the both of them “Do either of you know what this means?”
Both of them are quite for a few moments before Corrine speaks first, “Colt, did we ever tell you the story of Cyrus Smith?” I shake my head and she continues, “Well when your uncle and I were growing up our Alpha was Cyrus. He was an amazing Alpha. He was not mates so all the females in the pack would try their hardest to gain his attention. However, he would always say he would not settle until he found his mate. Well he went to town one day and didn’t come back for a few days. When he did come back he had brought a human woman named Beth with him and told us she was his true mate. At that time no one even batted an eye at the thought of a human mate. It was still odd considering we usually mate with our own kind but no one questioned it. They were so happy together. They even had a child together who was a shifter. However about three years after Cyrus brought her here a wolf showed up on the outskirts of town. Cyrus would track him down and had confronted him once. He would not tell Cyrus why he was there. He said he would leave however after a day or two he was still here. Cyrus would hunt him and would stay on his trail before he would either realize his paths were crossing over the other or the rogue would find some way of masking his scent but, each time the rogue’s scent was closer and closer to the pack members homes. Then one night Cyrus had had enough. He left and took all of the best trackers in the pack and vowed he was going to catch the rogue. He was gone all night and when he came back in the early morning, he walked into his house and she was gone.” She says. “One of the other memebers, Axel, had stayed behind said he had heard a noise around three in the morning. When he went outside to look they saw a man trying to get into Cyrus’s home. They went to confront the man but when the stranger saw someone coming he shifted and attacked our Axel however, he did not knock him out. Axel had said after the wolf attacked him, he had shifted back to man and walked to Axel and told him ‘no one will keep me from her anymore. She is my mate. Not his’.Axel had to watch while he bled out, the stranger break a window on the house and climb through. Then he came out carrying Beth while she slept and disappeared into the woods. He was so badly injured he could not go after them. The wolf had taken large bite out of the Axel’s abdomen and was bleeding everywhere so he could not follow after the shifter.” She pauses to shake her head slightly and I can tell she’s holding back tears. “When Cyrus came back, Axel told him what he had seen. Cyrus, having been tracking the rogue, instantly recognized the strangers scent in his home as the rogues. He tracked for days with no signs of either the rogue or Beth. After a week Cyrus was started telling the elders how he could feel Beth’s fear through their mating bond. He tracked for days that turned into weeks and still had not even found a sign of them. Then one day when we were all in the pack house having a meeting over what they should try next to find them, Cyrus had dropped to his knees and grabbed at his chest and screamed. He began shouting and everyone tried to see what was wrong with him. Once he stopped screaming he collapsed to the floor and was lying there panting,” she stops and takes a deep breath and wipes away tears that had been falling down as she spoke. I put my hand on hers as she gripped the handle on her chair. “When he finally calmed down he had told us he could feel her dying through their bond. The rogue had killed her.”
I can feel my eyes widen in shock. My heart has been racing ever since she told me the rogue called Cyrus’s mate his mate also and when she told me the rogue had killed Beth, my heart began to feel like it would explode if it didn’t calm down.
This rogue will not touch Shae. I haven’t even met Shae in my human form. She doesn’t even know I exists but I will protect her until my last breath.

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