The day of the ceremony, Orion went with Seth to pick up their clothes from Forrest Fittings and Things. They also used the opportunity to get more clothes from the pack so that they would have more option than what Vincent had kindly provided.
At first Orion was hesitant to completely changing her, admittedly limited, wardrobe but once she tried on the outfit that Mama D’Leau had made, she decided she wouldn’t mind more swanky new clothes.
As she put on the clothes for the second time that day- the second time with the intention of wearing them to their designated function. She had showered, and moisturised her skin before going to change in the bedroom to allow Seth the time and space to use the bathroom too.
The powder blue pantsuit that Mama D’Leau had made, was a cotton-silk blend. The woman had paired it with a silver shirt that did well to emphasise the girl’s figure and compliment her skin tone. She liked how the material felt against her skin, and the way it fell around her.
Seth emerged from the bathroom, fully clothed, not too long later. His eyes gravitated towards Orion, he had to remind himself not to stare as he took her in! She was absolutely gorgeous and she didn’t even have to do anything.
Seth supposed that Mama D’Leau and Papa Bois had been somewhat instrumental in how co-ordinated they looked as a couple since Orion’s outfit matched his own light blue shirt that was paired with charcoal coloured pants. It was the most put together that he had looked in years; he kind of enjoyed how dynamic they looked together.
Orion had liked it too, though it would take her some time to get used to Seth’s appearance for a couple of reasons. Firstly, she had never seen him wear such clothing before, the suit did well to highlight his muscular form- which of course had the woman trying not to stare. However, the other thing, was much more noticeable and Orion wasn’t too sure she liked the change.
Seth had trimmed his hair, and shaved his face! His once bushy, full beard, was reduced to smooth caramel skin, only small traces of stubble as a reminder of what once was. He had also cut his hair, it was somewhat cropped, his curls barely brushing his forehead in the way it did before. Orion missed his curly mane; it had been long enough to reach his shoulders, now it was hardly long enough for her to run her fingers through.
She wasn’t upset- she knew it didn’t make sense for her to be- it was hair, and it wasn’t even hers. Deep down, she knew what she felt, was a displacement created by an unknown. She knew it was Seth, but for her he seemed completely different somehow.
As soon as he saw her face Seth knew, “You don’t like it?”
“It’s just very different,” She told him as she shook her head. It wasn’t as if something as small and trivial as a haircut would break their supernatural bond as soulmates. “I liked your curls.”
He hesitated, thinking through his actions; maybe it was because he had been cautious for so long, or maybe because he was still unsure. Orion sidled up to him with a confident grace, her hands reaching out to latch onto his and pull them around her waist. His fingers flexed on her hips before resting against them gently like they were always supposed to be there.
The feeling of being so bold, of being so open and getting what he wanted was bizarre, and he still had to get used to the fact that that he no longer had to force himself away from her. He liked it, he liked the possibility that one day he would be able to kiss her, to claim her, to take her without feeling as though he were committing a sin. He didn’t have to hold back anymore, and knowing that made him feel free.
Orion smiled, enjoying this new unreserved side to him and the feeling of his arms around her waist- which she liked more, she could not say. looked up at him, inspecting his face carefully as if searching for the familiarity that she knew was in him somewhere.
Her fingers were cautious as the reached up to stroke his jaw, cheeks and chin where had once been a thick, dark, jungle of hair. She didn’t stop her exploration, her hands finding their along his cheekbones, the sharp slope of his brows, brushing past his temples to his scalp. It were almost as if she were a climber, trying to get a better feel for a new ledge- tracing all the ridges and contours that now laid exposed.
Seth groaned at the feeling of her fingers in his hair, he would never get tired of that feeling. His eyes fluttered shut, and as if like a magnet being pulled in, his lips found hers. Tenderly and slow, it started off, like new shoots blooming on the forest floor; sparks igniting at the contact, lighting up his whole being.
Orion gasped, delving deeper into him; the shoots wild and untameable as the fervour grew between them. It became a battle, a clash of teeth and tongue as he took, and she fought to take even more.
“I like this.” She smiled as if satisfied having proven her point, her hand cupping his stubbly jaw. “It feels nicer when we kiss.”
“Goddess you’re going kill me.”
When Seth and Orion arrived in the clearing where Vincent and Spiraea’s ceremony would be held, it was already half full. Most of the pack members had already arrived, everyone dressed nicely for the huge occasion.
They all looked to Seth and Orion with respect; it was almost as if they knew who they were. Seth knew without a doubt that they could probably sense their ranks as Alpha and Luna, even if they weren’t technically a part of any particular pack just yet. It was just in the way that they carried themselves with an assertive readiness, a powerfulness, that made them come across as leaders.
A kind man led them to seats in the middle of the small clearing, not too far behind Vincents Beta, Gamma and Gamma female. Orion sat, her knees turned towards Seth as she watched with interest; she didn’t fully understand the whole point of a ceremony, but found it intriguing nonetheless.
Seth placed a hand on one of Orion’s knees, stopping her from fidgeting in her seat. The girl hadn’t even noticed her energetic ticks, Seth supposed it was a mix of her wanting things to hurry along- for curiosities sake- and her unaccustomed to the setting of being around so many people, wearing new clothes.
The clearing filled up more, Seth recognised unconsciously the other Alpha’s as they took their seats in the row in front of him, and the same row as him. Seth took them in, but didn’t give too much more than a passing glance not wanting to seem overly aggressive or curious in his approach. From what he noticed, they were all very different, some had brought their mates, others remained alone. So these were the people who needed him, who wanted to help his pack, and wanted to help him.
Vincent was stood below a large archway that was decorated with different flowers, his parents with him. He didn’t look too nervous, though Seth knew that he didn’t know Vincent well enough to make any determination on his physicality or mannerisms.
The clearing was full, and everyone waited patiently for Spiraea to arrive. Every so often Orion would lean over, whispering a quiet question to Seth like; when will it start? Why isn’t Vincent wearing shoes? How did they make the flowers arch like that?
Each and every time, Seth would try to answer calmly before reminding Orion to be patient, and to be respectful by sitting still and to just watch first. He promised that he would answer all her questions later on, so she could make a list instead of asking her questions during the ceremony.
It was moments like those that Seth saw the child he watched grow; she was as curious and playful as any pup and he was glad that their harsh life in the wild hadn’t taken away those qualities. He loved her curiosity, it put wonder into her life- and by extension his. He hoped that she never grew out of it.
A hush fell over the crowd as Spiraea arrived with Fletcher by her side, walking her gently down the aisle. After that, Seth didn’t have to remind Orion to watch or be quiet because her curiosity took over, and she payed the utmost attention to the ceremony start to finished.
The girl enjoyed it- she found it strange- but she understood now what it was all about. There was such love and joy between the couple she practically felt their unity with each other and their pack, and then to their son.
The ceremony lasted over an hour and a half, though it felt much faster. Afterwards, the pack gathered in the large expanse of land behind the pack house to celebrate the new couple. The space was decorated prettily, candles and flowers adorning the tables that had been put out for guests to sit at. There was also a large banquet of foods, all of which smelt absolutely heavenly.
All the Alphas gathered at one of the larger tables, and there Vincent introduced Seth and Orion to the rest of the group. Spiraea thanked them both for coming, and introduced Orion to another human girl by the name of Leora. Orion was intrigued by Leora after Seth explained quietly that she was blind, and that her stomach was huge because she was pregnant. The reunion between the other two humans was strangely emotional, Spiraea cried and hugged the woman with much a ferocity- Orion found that odd too.
The other Alpha’s- Adam, Killian, Sebastian and Renee- all had mixed reactions at Seth’s presence. The only female Alpha, and Killian, seemed somewhat surprised whilst the remaining two seemed genuinely happy to meet him.
“It’s a pleasure to meet you all, thank you all for what you were willing to do for my pack.” Seth spoke with civility and a genuine thanks. He felt awkward, but not shy, it was reflected in the harshness in his voice and his stone cold exterior; he had forgotten what it was like to be around other people socially. He didn’t remember himself always being so out of touch.
“Of course, we Alpha’s need to have each other’s backs.” Sebastian nodded firmly, his mask of seriousness slipping- whether it was because of the situation, because he was naturally charming, or because he had drank one too many glasses of wine none could be too sure.
“It’s us who should be thanking you.” Adam spoke with a bright smile, pearly white teeth emphasising his other features making his leafy green eyes shine. “You’ve saved a lot of wolves from dying in a ruthless war.”
Perhaps he had, but there was a small doubt in Seth’s mind that maybe he hadn’t. He still had to face his uncle, and there was a chance that he could wind up dead. Then Orion would be left alone; he couldn’t think about it, he wouldn’t dare. He had no choice to succeed, not when there was so much to lose.
Vincent and Spiraea were both whisked away by different people to dance, leaving their guests to mingle. Orion spoke a lot more with Leora, listening to her story and learning more about what it was like to be pregnant, or blind. She liked Leora a lot. She also met one of Spiraea’s other friends, a woman named Marianne, who after much chatting agreed to take Orion on a proper shopping trip with Spiraea.
Seth caught up on all he had missed with the other Alphas and even spent some time explaining to Killian and Sebastian- whom he found out were cousins- about how he met Orion and their history together.
The night wore on. Seth and Orion ate, watched as couples danced, and at one point Orion managed to convince Seth to try to teach her the steps. After a few moments, and a multitude of trodden toes, they both gave up.
Orion would never admit it because she was having so much fun, but the woman was getting tired. She had been up quite early that morning and the sun had already set for the evening. Seth took her by the hand, encouraging her to say goodbye to all the new friends that she had made as he nodded his own farewells.
They walked hand in hand together through the darkness to the pack house. Seth felt as if he could collapse with the tiredness and he knew Orion felt the same, if not worse. All he wanted now was to lay with her and sleep the night away.