I ran as fast as I could. The wolves I was running from would have found out I was missing by now. I was dizzy and nothing made much sense except my need to survive. I could not let them catch me.
Deep in my heart I cursed my heritage and the inheritance that came with it. I wished that I had never been born. No one deserved the fate of a Siren wolf.
I kept to the street away from the road where the cars raced passed me. My hometown did not have these many cars. They frightened me and my wolf. I bumped into people as I went on and they either grumbled irritably or gave me dirty looks as if they had not just trampled my sensitive bare feet. The rest gave me a wide berth; they probably thought I was mentally impaired.
My scent, the scent of my kind, was much too easy to trace. It would surely leave a trail for their trackers to follow. The wolves who had brought me to this city, the ones I had escaped from, they wouldn’t let me go that easily.
I stopped, panting against a building and clutched a hand over my chest. I focused over the cars and across the street on the metal bars that made up the railing. It was probably there to keep the cars from driving off into the water. But they were low, and the more I looked at them, inefficient at keeping a small little wolf girl from diving into the water.
My wolf protested and urged me to abandon my idea. I growled at her weakness, even as I bit down my own.
My hometown also had very few pools. Pools that I had never visited. I had never swam before in my life. My wolf whined and almost took control over my body...our body?
Twenty years of living with a duo-subconsciousness and I still had no idea if we had joint ownership of both bodies, or if she owned the wolf form, and I the human.
I braced myself against the rough exposed brick wall and steadied my trembling legs. One breath to calm the wolf, two breaths to calm the human....
I shot forward and broke into a sprint. Cars swiveled and hooted but I had one vision in mind. I grabbed onto the railings and awkwardly clambered over it. Careful not to fall, which was ridiculous considering I wanted to jump over!
I huffed out a heavy rugged breath and released the metal poles at my sides. I bent my knees, meaning to leap over like a frog, but my knees gave out and I plopped forward, falling and eventually splashing into the water.
“Damn!” I slammed my hands against the steering wheel, hard. My meeting with the New York alpha was in ten minutes, and Club Thunder was thirty minutes away. I hit the gas, thanking the heavens that the roads were clear before the lunch rush.
My frustration at being late conflicted with my worry over Riley. Just thinking of him sweaty and shivering made me sick to my stomach.
I forced myself to loosen my grip on the steering wheel before I dented it. Nothing on earth could make me regret taking care of Riley. He was my everything.
If I had had my way, Riley would have never left town to follow me. But he had insisted. And I could never deny him anything.
His fevers had plagued him for five years. On and off. Whenever they pleased. And then they would pass and he’d be healthy as if nothing had ever happened. They pissed me off. I wanted him safe, healthy. He deserved better.
I loved him.
Everyone in SwanLake Town knew that. Dustin and Riley. Riley and Dustin. I’d kill for him. So would my wolf.
I had chanced upon him when I was fifteen. Since then he’d been my best friend despite being younger than me.
Now and then, a few people would speculate that we were more than friends, that there was no way our love was platonic, but we knew better. I didn’t give a flying ape what anyone thought about me and much less my relationship with Riley.
“I’ll die if you left me.”
He’d told me that last night and dammit, it kept playing in my head. It made my insides clench. What did he mean by that? Why on earth would I leave him? Half the time I was worried he would--
I slammed my foot against the brakes, but even then I knew I was too late. So much for shifter reflexes!
My heart thundered in my ears as I ran to the front of the car.
The girl lay still on the concrete with a worrying cut on her forehead. She had been trying to cross the road and I had rammed into her with my stupid car!
“Lady.” I shook her gently trying not to cause any more damage to her fragile form. I didn’t ask her if she was okay. Of course she wasn’t. I let out a sigh of relief when I smelled her. “You’re a wolf shifter,” I said. Even through her unsteady eyes, I could see her wariness. “I’m going take you back to your pack.”
I reached under her knees with one hand and the other one went under her shoulders and I lifted her. Not surprisingly, she was light as a feather. That tended to happen when you were a little over five feet.
“No. Please! Just leave me here,” she croaked.
I frowned at her. “Are you crazy? I just run you over. You need a doctor.” What did they call them? I thought for a second. “A pack doctor,” I said remembering. “They’ll know how to treat you.”
“No! I…” she struggled against my hold. “Don’t take me to them. I’d rather die here. Please! Put me down.”
I was losing my grip on the girl so I carried quickly her to the car and lay her down in the back seat.
The small confines of my car were quickly overtook by the smell of her blood. It was intoxicating. My wolf fangs itched beneath my gums. A strange reaction. I was not usually so bloodthirsty. “Your head should have stopped bleeding by now,” I mumbled pulling away. As a shifter, her body should have repaired itself within minutes of damage.
She gripped the front of my jacket. Her eyes were starting to droop closed. “I escaped….kidnapped me. Don’t.... leave me.... I…die.....” She slurred her words. They hardly made any sense except that I should not be taking her back to the New York Pack, which only confirmed my suspicions.
Cole’s pack was shady.
She lost consciousness and fell limply against the seat. I shut the door and run a hand tiredly over my face.
The toll of worrying over Riley was catching up with me.
My blood ran cold as a shiver racked through me.
“I’ll die if you leave me.”
It sounded a lot like the nonsense the girl had been mumbling.
I sighed. It was foolish to think of it as more than a coincidence.
I drove back to the apartment. At least I could check on Riley. The universe was clearly against my meeting with Cole.