Seeking happiness

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XLV

The minute Verona walks out, a sigh of relief goes through Joseph’s office.

“If you wouldn’t have said something, I would have finished the man then and there,” Nick admits, rubbing his temples with his fingers.

“Are you alright?” Danny looks concerned.

Nick nods. “Yeah, just mad at the guy. Too bad we still need him, otherwise I would love to torture him.”

“Let’s hope Leo and his men will be able to successfully follow the guy so he brings us to our father.” Chris says with a sigh.

Joseph’s eyes widen. “Was what he said true?”

“Yes and no. The part where we thought our father died but is still alive is true. But the part where he doesn’t want to know us anymore is not. Verona has him locked up somewhere. So now we are trying to find out where he is hidden.” Chris explains walking over to the sofa and lets himself fall on it.

“And the part where you have captured his son and daughter in law?” Joseph looks around to see the reaction of the men in the room.

“That is also true.” Danny looks at Joseph.

“You’re no better than him, then. And killing them will only make it worse. You should’ve gone to the police the minute he threatened you.” Joseph says gruffly.

Chris gets back up and walks over to Joseph. He puts a hand on his shoulder and looks at him. “Joseph, there’s a lot of things that you don’t know about us. Going to the police isn’t really an option. I won’t kill them, don’t worry. We are werewolves. We live in packs; we have our own laws. When someone violates our laws, we capture them, question them and then hand them over to the government to be prosecuted. We can’t just do whatever we like, but we can capture the people that don’t live by either our or the government’s laws. And there’s a lot of laws that are just the same.”

Joseph steps away from Chris, he frowns and thinks for a moment. “So, he has some leverage on you then. He knows you won’t kill them. I don’t think he will not, not kill your father. He doesn’t care about laws, I think.”

Danny stands up too. He points at Joseph, “exactly. We have guys following him, hopefully he will take them to where he has hidden the former Alpha.”

“The former Alpha? What is that?” Joseph looks around questioningly.

“The highest rank there is in a pack. The leader. A former Alpha is an Alpha that has resigned.” Chris patiently explains everything to Joseph.

“And who is the Alpha now?”

“I am. A rank is inherited by the first born, just like kings and queens pass on their title to their first born.”

“Wow, I never knew.” Joseph plops down on his chair and rubs his forehead. It’s a lot to process for him.

“We don’t actually live out in the open. Only few people know we exist. And we intend on keeping it that way. We don’t want to end up in a zoo or something.” Nick smiles.

“When this is all over and everything has calmed down, you are more than welcome to visit us sometime. Then you can learn more about us.” Chris smiles at Joseph.

“Isn’t that a problem, me being a human and all?”

“No, it’s not. There are some humans among us actually.”

“Really?”

“My girlfriend is human,” Danny says. “And Jolena is at our pack as we speak.”

“Okay, well, I’d love to come.” Joseph smiles, you can see relief in his eyes.

“Were you scared of us?” Nick asks him, trying to hide a mischievous smile.

“Honestly?” Joseph smiles a little. “A little bit, yes. You guys seem very intimidating. There’s an aura around you, that makes people twitchy, I guess.”

“You don’t have to fear us. If you leave us in peace, we will do the same.”

They are quiet for a minute, then Joseph starts to talk again. “Is there anything I can do to help?”

“Not right now, no. But when Jolena comes back, you have to promise me to keep an eye on her. She’s very dear to me.” Chris looks seriously now. He needs her to be safe.

“Has Jolena’s sudden departure to your pack something to do with this whole situation? You said she was attacked or something?”

Chris nods. “Yes. She has been attacked by Vince. We arrived at her apartment just in time to prevent things running out of hand.”

That night Leo walks into Chris’s office. It’s past working hours and only Chris and his men are left behind.

“Christopher,” Leo smiles. “I have good news.”

All men in the room look up.

“Either Verona is stupid, he’s getting sloppy, or he has something planned. We have found out where father is being held.” Leo’s smile widens.

“You’re kidding.” Nick looks at him with wide eyes. “I expected we would have had to wait until after the weekend.”

“No I’m serious. Verona owns a little house in one of the poorer residential areas on the edge of the city. We haven’t seen father yet, but there’s always a lot of guards present and the windows are kept shut.”

“Hmm,” Chris rubs the stubble on his chin with his hand. “Either father is there, or he is not and it is a way to distract us. We have to be careful. If father is not there, Verona could panic and either shoot father, or move him somewhere else.” He looks Leo in the eyes. “Do you still have someone following Verona?”

“I do and I have a couple of men at the house.” Leo nods.

“Well done,” Chris gives him a pat on his back. “We have to keep an eye on Verona, to see how he responds when we raid his little house.

“I truly hope that your father is in that house.” Danny says, he turns to look at Leo. “Are the guards armed?”

“They’re not keeping their weapons in sight.” Leo says, “They could be hiding guns or knives under their clothing though. We have to keep that in mind and be careful. Also, because we’re in a residential neighbourhood we just can’t go in as wolves. We have to stay in human form.”

Chris nods in agreement. “Leo, because you’ve already been there, I suggest you take the lead. You tell us what to do.”

“Alright then, you guys ready?” Leo looks around at his brothers and his friend.

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