C H A P T E R T W E L V E
“Which reminds me of some questions of my own,” I say. Rylee bobs her head up and down, silently encouraging me to continue.
“Ok, I will start off with the question that has been on my mind before I even walked through your front door. Obviously, you are a werewolf, but your family are humans. Can you please explain this to me?” I ask, aware that I am slightly tilting my head to the side inquisitively.
Rylee closes her eyes and takes a deep breath before she slowly exhales. Her brows furrow almost as if she is in pain. This question must be a touchy subject for her. Her whole mood just went somber. I feel bad now for even asking, but I have to know.
“Ok Wow. Um, where to begin. Hmmm….. I guess I will just start from the beginning.” She is now looking at me, but shrugs and turns her gaze towards the water. She is looking at the water, but not seeing it. She has a faraway look in her eyes as if she is reliving her memories. Her beautiful pouty plump lips are now pressed into a thin line.
“My parents, Sandy and Mike, were on a hike during a camping trip over Memorial Day weekend 23 years ago. They found me beside two dead wolves in the forest. Said it appeared I was dragged to the trail by my clothes. Like someone wanted me to be found, but the wolves were curled around me as if they were attempting to protect me. According to them, the wolves were massive, substantially bigger than any normal wolf. The bigger one, my parents said, was as white as new fallen snow, the purest white you could ever image. Almost iridescent. The fur glowed in the bright afternoon sunlight. The slightly smaller wolf was a gorgeous brown. My parents then scooped me up and took me to the hospital to be checked over. They contacted the police on the way, but by the time they and the game commission went to look for the wolves, their bodies were gone.”
I am looking at Rylee as she sniffles, unshed tears brimming her bottom eyelids. She is still looking towards the lake, but then her bottom lip quivers. It breaks my heart. ‘Do not worry my love, I will try my damnedest to get answers about your parents for you.’ I quietly vow to Rylee, and my wolf agrees. I cannot help but to move closer to my mate and I gently grab her chin, turning her head softly towards me. She sniffles some more as I run my hands up and down her arms, attempting to calm her. The tears in her watery eyes dancing as she looks into mine seeking comfort. Her lip trembles again and my heart shatters. “I am so sorry. Are you ok?” I ask Rylee in my most tender voice. She nods her head, and blinks her tears away before clearing her throat to continue. I slide my hands down her arms one more time to cup her hands in mine and hold them as she continues. The tingles and sparks must be calming her down. She gives me a slight smile before dropping her chin down towards her chest, looking at the rock in between us. She closes her eyes and takes in a deep breath before slowly exhaling and then sighing.
“I was around two months old when I was found, according to a pediatrician. My parents took me in and officially adopted me a year later as there were no police reports of a missing baby matching my description and no one stepped forward to claim me. They had been trying to have a baby for years, but it just was not working out for them. So they took it as a sign that I was meant to be their sweet baby girl. Apparently, they did some celebrating after taking me in though. The heavens smiled down on them for their good deed and decided to bless them. Hence why Chloe is a year younger than me.” We both laugh at that.
“Chloe does not know I am adopted. Please do not tell her! My parents told me when I wass around twelve, and we decided that we would keep it between us. Please?!!” I lightly squeeze her hands reassuringly.
“Of course. Your secret is safe with me. That is not my secret to tell. You might have to tell her eventually though. Seeing how you look nothing like the rest of your family, she may already be suspicious. Plus she is old enough now, she would be able to understand and accept it.’ Rylee groans, squeezes her eyes shut, and nods her head. “I know.”
Rylee lets out a shaky breath before continuing, “I actually found out I was a werewolf when I was fifteen from one of my high school teachers, Mrs. Smith. Talk about a shock. It took me a little while to accept it, but once I did, she turned into my mentor and is now a very good friend of mine. She has taught me everything I know about being a werewolf. Carla, that is her name, is a lone wolf as she followed her human mate here and there are no packs nearby for her to join. I guess that actually makes me a lone wolf too. Anyways, she actually broke the news that I was a werewolf to me a day before my sixteenth birthday. She could smell I was going to shift and invited me to her house using the excuse that she wanted my help on a special project. I agreed and she drove us to her house after school. At this point, we were already close and I had been to her house numerous times before. Therefore, it was nothing out the ordinary. She had taken me under her wing as soon as I started high school. Of course I did not know why at the time, but Carla later told me she knew I was a werewolf as soon as I stepped foot into the high school for the first time.” Rylee smiled warmly at that memory which made me smile in return. If my mate is happy, I am happy. Although, I want to talk to this Mrs. Carla Smith. I have some questions for her. Some of Rylee’s story is not adding up for me, and while she may be oblivious to the discrepancies, I am not.
“So anyway, she drove me to her house after school. It was a Friday and Carla asked me to stay overnight. My parents had no issues with it. I later came to learn they were sneakily setting up my 16th birthday party and was going to have me stay at a friend’s house anyway. Therefore, it all worked out. Once we got to her house, Carla and I started working on the made up project. Later, Carla’s husband, James, arrived home from work and joined us for dinner. Afterwards, she revealed my werewolf status to me. I thought surely she must have lost her mind.” Rylee giggled at the memory as I continued to listen contently.
“I kept laughing at her like a maniac thinking it was a joke as Carla and her husband just sat there looking back and forth at me and each other. Maybe they thought I had lost my mind. I do not know. Finally, I stopped laughing and looked at them. They were being serious. I was so confused. Of course I questioned it saying ‘That is fantasy, werewolves don’t exist. They are not real.’ You know, all the stuff every “human” would say that do not believe in fantasy creatures. Thus, Carla did the only thing she could do that would make me believe her. She shifted. I was so scared I peed my pants and fell backwards on to the floor.” Both of us then roar with laughter.
“You didn’t?” I ask still howling.
“I did” Rylee whispers. She is now blushing a deep crimson, no doubt embarrassed, but she is wearing a wide smile that spread across her whole face.
“I was stunned silent and utterly terrified. Carla walked over to me slowly as I inched away. James just stood there watching us. Carla quickly reached me as she was walking faster than I was moving, and laid down in front of me placing her head on the floor between her front paws. Her eyes were looking into mine, tail wagging. I just sat there, shaking, staring. It felt like hours passed by with us just sitting there like that, motionless. Finally, James said I could pet her head if I wanted. She looked at me, I mean really looked at me. I looked deeper into her eyes as well, and that is when I saw and felt the familiarity. That helped to calm my nerves somewhat. I slowly reached my hand out, and patted her head. After a few minutes, James helped me up and then Carla stood up. James went to stand behind her as she shifted back, holding a robe up to block my view of her now very naked body. She quickly put the robe on and closed it. Again, I was completely shocked. I am sure my eyes must have been bugging out of my head.”
Rylee stops talking and takes in a deep breath of the fresh forest air. I gaze at her as her eyes flutter closed and she slowly lays back on the rock we are sitting on, allowing her hands that I am still holding to slip out of mine. I follow suit, laying down so my feet are at the opposite end of the rock as hers. The top of our heads are almost touching. We are both staring up at the clear blue sky, waiting for Rylee to continue her story. She takes in another deep breath and gradually exhales it before she starts to speak again.
“So after she shifted back, Carla went to change into more appropriate clothing, and brought me a pair of sweatpants and a t-shirt to change into. I had a quick shower then we all sat down to talk. Well, more like I just sat there in shock, not saying anything, just listening and trying to comprehend everything I was hearing. Carla explained to me that from the moment she first smelled me, she knew I was a werewolf and decided then and there to help me. She knew I was adopted and my family were human, so they would not be any help, and we are the only two werewolves in this area. We discussed anything and everything. She answered all my questions. Finally I asked her why she was showing and telling me all this. She explained since the following day was my sixteenth birthday, I would be experiencing my first shift, and I would need some help and coaching through it. Sure enough, the next morning I woke up in excruciating pain…. well you know how it is.” Rylee said as I nod in agreement, not that she can see me. I shift so I am now lying on my side, with my head propped up by my hand, my elbow resting down on the rock. My face is now mere inches away from my mates. I am watching her intently as she speaks. Examining all her magnificent features. She is still lying on her back, eyes closed, face up towards the sky, sun bathing her beautiful face as she continues to tell me her story.
“I eventually shifted and made it through my first time, all thanks to Carla. I do not think I would have been able to do it without her. I am truly grateful I had her with me for it. After I shifted back, I was extremely sore. Every single muscle in my body was screaming in pain. Thankfully, that went away quickly because of the fast werewolf healing. By the time I felt better, it was around noon, and my parents called me to come home to celebrate my birthday with them. Carla took me home and told me to keep the werewolf thing a secret, and only to discuss it with her. I am keeping secrets from my family, and it is so hard. It is killing me to keep this from them. Chloe does not know I am adopted and none of them know I am a werewolf. These are huge secrets to keep.” Rylee says with a sigh, squeezing her eyes shut as if it is causing her physical pain. This hurts me to see her hurting. My heart literally feels like it is being pressed in a vice grip. I swallow hard to try to rid myself of the feeling.
“I know baby. I am so sorry, but for the safety of our kind, it is vital that our existence is kept a secret from the human species.” I say while softly stroking her cheek with my thumb. Rylee’s eyes are now open, and she is gaping at me. Probably because I called her baby, but I ignore it. She will have to get used to it. I smirk at that thought. “I will help you try to figure out what happened to your biological parents, and where you come from if you would like? Also, I would like to meet Carla if you would allow me to, and if she would like to meet me.”
“OH MY GOODNESS! That would seriously be amazing! I have been wondering about my biological parents since I found out I was adopted. Then when I found out I was a wolf, it made more sense with how I was found. Of course, I could not tell my parents this, and Carla and I did not find out any information on our own. We tried. If I could learn about my wolf parents, what happened to them, and where I come from, it would mean the world to me.”
Her eyes are now wide and shining bright, head turned towards me, looking at me excitedly. She is leaning up on her elbows. Our faces are so close I can feel her warm breath on my chin. Her long hair is falling underneath her, pooling on the rock below. This is a vision I will remember for the rest of my life. I lean in and place the lightest kiss on the tip of her nose. She gasps and blushes furiously. So fucking adorable. I could not help myself. My self-restraint is all but spent. I do not know how much longer I can hold myself back. She sputters for a few seconds in response before finishing her train of thought.
“Um uh….. oh yeah. Carla said if I ever found my mate, she wanted to meet him. So I am sure that would be a yes, and I have no problems with you meeting her.” Rylee exclaims with an embarrassed chuckle, gently shaking her head side from side. No doubt still trying to clear her mind of my little kiss. She is so cute when she is flustered. She then looks at me as if she was looking into my soul. When our eyes lock, it is magic. I feel like fireworks are going off in my stomach. We are connected. We get lost in each other’s gaze, just staring at each other for what seems like minutes. Rylee blinks furiously, breaking our eye contact to look back towards the sky, lying back down. God, I really want to kiss those luscious lips.
Finally, I clear my throat to break the silence. “Chloe actually thinks you are adopted. She has mentioned it to me a time or two.” I quietly state, hoping not to upset Rylee.
“WHAT!!!??” Rylee shrieks, shooting straight up into a seated position, facing me once again. She stares at me wide eyed with her mouth hanging open. I chuckle at her response, lift my pointer finger to the bottom of her chin, and softly help her close her mouth. “She has had suspicions since she was ten and you were eleven. She said the difference in appearances are too much to ignore. She is worried though that if she says anything she will hurt you and your parents. So that is why she has never mentioned it.”
“Well, I guess I should talk to my parents about discussing this with Chloe. At least that would be one secret off my chest.” Rylee breathes out a sigh of relief.
“I think that is a good idea. It will make you feel better, and it will be one less secret weighing you down” I agree.
“Yeah” Rylee states back emotionlessly. Her eyes look like she is far away again.
We are now both sitting up right, facing each other, lost in our own thoughts. After a few more long moments of silence, I decide to interrupt the quietness.
“So, remember how earlier we discussed my wolf’s colors and how either white or black fur is a sign of alpha blood?”
“Mmmmhmmm.” Rylee hums in response, still a little lost in her thoughts.
“Well you have some white fur.”
“You know what that means?”
“Nope......wait....” Rylee’s attention is now turned fully back to me. Whatever she was thinking of is now long gone. Her brows scrunch together. “Are you saying what I think you’re saying?”
“What am I saying, Rylee?”
“You are saying I have alpha blood in my veins?”
“It appears so, yes. There is no other way to have white fur. That would also explain the white wolf that was with you when you were found. It was probably you father. If there was an alpha and luna killed in an ambush, and their baby went missing, I am sure I will be able to find something out about it. I will call Carter later to have him start looking into it for us.” I place my right hand on her left knee reassuringly, and give her a small smile.
“Thank you, from the bottom of my heart. Seriously.” Rylee gives me a grateful smile in return. “I truly do really appreciate that. So would you happen to know anything about multi-colored coats since you also have one? Or why I my coat is mostly brown instead of white?”
I give Rylee an apologetic shrug. “That I am not sure of. It is actually quite rare for a werewolf to have a multi-colored coat. However, I never put in the initiative to find out more about it. Maybe it is something else we can look into.” Rylee nods in understanding, but I can still see the gears turning inside her mind.
“So…. two werewolves, both descending from alpha blood lines, and both with rare, very distinctive, multi-colored coats are chosen to be mated together. What are the odds?” Rylee asks, not necessarily to me. It is more like she is just thinking out loud, tapping her chin inquisitively. I look at her, taking her all in as a million different thoughts zip through my mind.
“What….what if it is not a coincidence?” This peaked Rylee’s curiosity. I can tell. Her eyebrows raise up towards her hairline, her eyes crinkle in the corners, and her lips slightly turn upwards.
“What do you mean?” She asks carefully, unsure of what I am insinuating.
“I mean, I whole heartedly believe with both of us having alpha bloodlines and unique fur colorations, we are definitely meant to be mates. For whatever reason, we are linked. We are meant to be together. I want us to be together. I want to be with you.” I then flash Rylee my most charming smile I could muster. Hoping my eyes are portraying the love I already hold for her. She looks utterly surprised at my proclamation. Her mesmerizing lips slightly part as I hear a gasp sneak out between them. She starts breathing heavier, her eyes go wide, and she has the cutest pink blush creeping up her neck, washing up over her cheeks to the tips of her ears. She is only stunned for a moment though. Then she shakes her head and turns to look at the lake.