"A dad is someone who holds you when you cry, scolds you when you break the rules, shines with pride when you succeed, and has faith in you even when you fail." - Unknown
I was sitting on the window seat of the car which was slowly departing this city where I was born and raised till now, Larkspur.
The moon was hiding behind the clouds and it was raining heavily as if the dark clouds were pouring their heart out.
The drops were falling on the window glass, leaving behind the trace marks. But not too long the evidence remained as another drop approached soon behind.
"He will be safe there, don't worry." My father said to my mother as she was tensing up beside me.
He took her hands in his and started rubbing circles on her palm soothingly.
'How perfectly their hand fits with each other,' I always wonder. They love each other a lot. And why wouldn't they... After all, they are mates.
I don't know much about mates. My dad told me once that mom was his mate and one day, I will find mine and will love her unconditionally.
My shifting phase is still years away and once I shift, I'll be able to identify my mate when crossed path with her.
They say that in this world Moon goddess has created someone for everyone. No one knows who is the one for them, but once they do, they would never let them go.
"Why is this happening? I never thought that one day we would be in the state of leaving our 7-year-old son in an orphanage," my mom, Leah, cried.
"Mom I'll be okay, I promise. You don't have to worry about me." I said while poking her palms.
She encircled her arms around me and I buried myself in her warm embrace. A few moments later, I felt moisture on my head, where mom's chin was resting, followed by quiet sobs.
Dad passed her a bottle of water.
Dylan Williams, the alpha of the Crimson pack, my dad is the toughest person I have ever seen. I idolized him. The way he held authority was just perfect. He always had that cold eyes and stoic face which would make the other person tremble in fear.
I have only seen him soft around me and my mother, Leah Williams.
She is the Luna of Crimson pack.
So caring, beautiful, and a fighter.
That's how I have always seen them.
But today, they were in their most vulnerable state.
I know it pained them. Sending me to an orphanage wasn't an easy decision.
But it was the right thing to.
The driver glanced at us from the rearview mirror and said, "It will take us a few more hours. You can take a nap until then."
I was planning to stay awake but the warmth of mom's hug and the sound of rain made me feel light-headed and slowly I drifted off to sleep.
I remember two days ago when we were at the packhouse, some pack members came and told him that many rogues appeared in the forest during the night, and instead of trying to attack us like they always did, they were trying to avoid our province.
"This is something unusual of them. Make sure to find everything. I won't let them harm my people." Dad ordered.
After getting more information we found that they joined forces with our enemy, The Blood Stone pack, and were conspiring against us.
They were the bad ones that I was sure of. In the past, they tried many things against us but were unsuccessful every time.
Our Crimson pack was one of the most influential packs out there. And to take us down they were gathering everyone they could. Even the rogues, who are dishonest and are thrown out of their respective packs for different reasons.
After that dad gathered everyone and announced," Soon there's going to be a war."
When those words escaped his lips, members who had no idea what was happening were stunned. And those who knew had a stern look on their faces, showing that they were ready to fight.
The Beta told everyone about the matter and soon everything was being planned.
While everyone was discussing the strategy, Lily, my caretaker held my hands and took me to my room upstairs.
She is a good person and also quite young, maybe in her mid-twenties.
"I also want to fight the enemies. I want to protect everyone."
"Sure, dear. You will one day, but not now. Alpha will take care of it. You just go to sleep." She said lovingly creasing my hairs.
"Why not now?" I groaned. I really wanted to do something.
"Dear, it's a dangerous world. You won't be able to fight with them. But as I said, one day you will be able to."
"Okay." I sighed, quite disappointed.
"Sleep tight, Xavier. Call me if you need anything." With that, she kissed my forehead and settled me down on my soft bed before pulling the quilt and covering me.
I fell asleep after she went out and closed the door behind her, turning the lights off.
... ... ...
And yesterday when I woke up, the moment I opened my door I felt the atmosphere of the packhouse quite tense.
I went to my mother and overheard her discussing with some people near the office.
I heard that the enemies surrounded our territory from all the boundaries and dad, with other warriors have gone to fight them.
A few hours later when I freshened up and had my breakfast, dad came back with the others.
Some of them were badly injured. Pack doctors approached them and inspected their wounds.
"Are you okay? None of our people died, right? Is everything under control?" Mom started panicking as she ran towards dad.
From upstairs, I noticed something was off about him. He held an emotion I had never seen before on his face.
"No one died. But," he hesitated and looked deep in thought.
"But what, Dylan?"
"They do not just want to take over us but also, are after Xavier." His voice was low and his gray eyes were refusing to meet my mother's ocean blue ones.
I heard my mother gasp.
His words registered my mind and I started thinking.
"Why?" Mom voiced my thoughts.
I started walking downstairs. They heard my footsteps and their head turned in my direction.
"Why dad?" I asked in a soft voice.
His eyes melted. He took me and carried me to the couch. I sat on it and looked at him, waiting for an answer.
He turned towards mom and other people then growled, "Those bastards! We underestimated them."
The Beta continued for him, "They tricked us. What we knew was that they would be ambushing us two weeks later. But it's false information. They will be coming here in two or three days when we are not ready. So that they can catch us off guard."
"But we are strong and more capable than them right?" Mom asked looking at dad and Beta.
"This time it's different. Our company is going through a crisis. The stakeholders are withdrawing. Also, a word is out between humans about werewolves. The circumstance is getting worse day by day." The Omega told and handed a file to dad.
"We had called our allies for help. Many of them have been murdered on their way here by the Blood Stone pack. And it would take some days for others to reach here. I don't think we have time to wait." Beta clenched his jaw and tried to control his anger but was failing to do so.
"And... We came to know that they are more focused on killing Xavier." Dad took a deep breath before beginning again.
"This will break me. . . break us. Not to forget the chances of winning against them is also low. Every one of us can get killed." Dad turned towards me for a slight second then back to the others.
"We won't let anything happen to Xavier or anyone else." Mom said, more like growled. She came and took a seat beside me.
I looked in her eyes and saw the change of color. The ocean blue ones were now getting darker by the second.
"I know momma." After letting those words out of my mouth, I hugged her. She relaxed a bit when my small frame tried to envelop her comparatively big one.
"So I won't risk your lives when we know that we won't be able to win. I have decided that each and everyone who is not a warrior or guard will leave the packhouse." Dad stood up at this point.
"The hidden escape tunnel will be opened by midnight. They won't know our movement if we use that tunnel. After exiting it, everyone here knows the location of our safe house. Go there. It's an order of your Alpha !" He paused for a second as many of us nodded.
"Those who are going to stay back will guard the tunnel and fight with enemies and distract them in case anything happens. When everyone will leave, they will also follow." The Omega said.
Dad let out a small growl, "For the time being we have to stay away from their reach. Once everything is back to our control, we will take over them. Just have to wait for the right time. But for now, go grab your stuff and be ready at midnight."
Everyone followed his orders and went to their rooms. Dad came towards mom and me. He was about to say something when Lily appeared with a worried look on her face. She bowed her head in respect and asked, "What about Xavier?"
"We will keep him with us all the time," mom said took a hold of my small hand in her big one.
"No, Leah. We won't." Came response from dad in a shattered voice.
"Why? I want to stay with you ..." I pleaded which was barely audible but with the look on his face I can say that he heard me.
"Lily, go and pack your things. And about Xavier, we will take care."
Lily shot a quick glance at me and left.
"Leah. Xavier. Listen to me ..." he stated and kneeled in front of us so that he reached my height.
"Tell me why can't he stay with us, Dylan? You know we won't let anything happen to Xavier."
Instead of answering, he turned and looked everywhere. I copied his actions and saw that there was no one else except us.
And finally, he said, "Hope House Orphanage. Xavier, you will be staying there for a while."
Mom opened her mouth to say something but was cut off. "We don't have any other way. Enemies are especially targeting Xavier this time. They also have rogues with them. We all will be secured at the safe house for the time being but... I hope not. . . but if some kind of fight goes on distracting us and taking that as an opportunity, what if they take Xavier?"
He cupped her cheeks.
"Also Leah, we have to be strong for our pack. In this critical situation, they all are dependent on us. We will have to spend most of the time thinking of ways to overcome this. We might not be there every time to protect our son.
I don't think we have any better option than sending Xavier to an orphanage till everything is back to normal." Dad completed his explanation and exhaled an audible breath.
He waited for us to respond. When none of us said anything he said, "Look I kn-"
"I will go."
Those three words were enough for them to have a shocked expression on their faces.
"I understand what dad is saying, and he is right. So, I will go."
"Are you sure Xavier?" Mom asked, worried.
Dad still wasn't able to believe that I agreed.
"I'm so sorry, son." He placed his forehead on my lap.
"When will you come and take me?" I was curious about that. Till when I'll have to live there.
"Honestly, it might take some time to settle everything. Maybe a few months or a year." He said with a guilty voice, still not meeting my eyes.
I slowly took my hands to reach his cheeks and when I touched it, his slight beard itched my hand but I ignored it and creased his left cheek.
"It's okay dad."
He lifted his head up and after a few moments of silence mom asked, "Have you told anyone about this?"
"No. No one will know about Xavier's whereabouts except me and you. But yes, I will send one of my trusted men to the orphanage from time to time so that he can meet Xavier and make sure he is okay."
"Okay then," I said and stood up from the couch.
A few hours later the escape tunnel was opened and when everyone was exiting, those who stayed back guarded the area.
Dad made sure everything was alright and going smoothly.
"Take care of everything here while I and Luna are away. Contact me if anything happens. And once everyone leaves, you will take the warriors and guards then leave. I will meet you at the packhouse in the morning. Okay?"
"Yes alpha, understood." Beta replied.
Me, mom, dad, and driver took off after sitting in the car and putting my luggage in the back.
Dad made sure the road was safe for us to go and the driver was also a trusted member of the pack.
I saw the packhouse for one last time.
"I'll miss it," I mumbled to myself.
I opened my eyelids when I felt a jerk. We were still in the car and everyone was awake. I was resting on mom's lap.
Outside I saw the rain had stopped. The sky now held a light blue and orange color.
We passed a signboard that read 'HOPE HOUSE ORPHANAGE - 20 KM away.'
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