Rogue

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Chapter 4

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“But dad!” Damon whines like the child he was while I ran my hand through Caspar’s fur aimlessly. A smirk laid comfortably on my lips as I watched the two.

“Damon, I swear to Goddess if you yell one more time in my Goddamn ears, I’m going to kill you.” Po replies through grunted teeth.

“It’s not fair!” He continues before sending me a hateful glare. I just send him an air kiss that makes his eyes glow. “He gets to go beyond borders- why can’t I?!”

“Damon.” Julian says, butting in before his mate could kill their son. “We’ve been having this discussion for a week now and our decision is final.”

“But h-”

“Damon.” He snaps and Damon shuts his mouth close. “You are not going pass the pack borders- end of story.”

Damon’s lips press into a thin line and his fists clench tightly at his sides. He remains quiet and so does the rest of the family who were all sitting outside on the grass.

Everyday around lunch or in the late afternoon, our parents took an hour or two out of their busy pack schedules to spend with the family. Some days we just ate at the table, watched a movie, or went for a group run- today we were chilling in our backyard with the large trees that mostly shaded us from the sun.

Josey was doing Hagen’s English homework while he gave her a foot massage as payment. Hagen was too stupid to realise she had finished five minutes after he started pressing his thumbs into the soles of her foot and was now just twiddling the pen between her fingers.

Peter laid on his stomach, his nose buried in a book with his legs crossed behind him. His hair was tied back in a loose bun with a few strands cascading at his cheeks.

Damon was the only one standing, kicking at the dirt as if it were its fault that he was being denied his wishes.
He towered a couple feet above our parents, who laid wrapped in each other arms. Po’s head was tucked comfortably under Julian’s chin, their arms and legs completely intertwined. Both were looking at Damon, completely unimposed by his height advantage.

Me- I was sitting with my legs folded under me, my fingers buried in Caspar’s fur, providing him with the love and attention he’d been deprived of for far too long.

Damon opens his mouth to argue once more but I beat him to it with the intention of grinding his gears just a little bit more.

“Damon,” I start as sympathetically as I could, his head snapping to me, “one day, when you’re older and perhaps a little more mature, you’ll be able to go beyond daddy’s back yard. Don’t worry little one, your time will come.” I finish with a smirk while his eyes light with fire.

I’ve told you a hundred times over and I’ll tell you again - Caspar starts watching Damon warily. They say don’t poke the bear, I say don’t poke the Demon.

“Levi, don’t taunt him.” Dad warns and I apologize wordlessly.

“This is favoritism!” Damon accuses and Po rolls his eyes so far back, I swore they’d get stuck.

“Kid seriously, shut the fuck up.” He groans angrily. Before Damon could respond he turned to Hagen quickly. “You. Entertain me.”

“Entertain yourself old man.” Hagen shoots back and everyone snickers.

“Josey, princess, please tell me you’ve got something interesting.” He says, completely ignoring Hagen’s response.

“Sorry grandpa, I’ve got nothing.” She says with a shrug and Aiden looks doubtfully to Peter. All eyes draw to Peter who is too engaged in his book to realise. When he eventually realizes it’s far too quiet, his eyes raise just above the edge of his book. He glances around briefly before gripping the book tighter.

“W-What?”

“Got anything to entertain me Peter-boy?” Aiden asks doubtfully as he looks to his shy son. It’s feels like an eternity before Peter opens his mouth with an answer.

“T-There’s a twenty-five p-percent chance that C-Caspar will turn on L-Levi.” He stutters out and Caspar immediately sits up with a look of horror on his face while I discreetly remove my hands from him.

I will not! I promise I won’t! - Caspar pleas looking to me and I give him a small smile.

“You pissed off the jaguar, good enough.” Aiden muses before falling back onto the Julian’s body and taking a deep breath. “Well, you guys are fucking boring. Levi, Damon, let’s go.”

“Rogue Hunting?!” Damon questions with a look of pure glee on his face.

“No. Mutt Training.” Josey deadpans as Hagen digs into her collarbone, somehow going from foot to back massage. Damon sends her a glare but dad grabs his collar and drags him away before he can respond.

“Levi.” He calls and I stand, Caspar right by my side as we follow behind them. I bid the others goodbye before jogging a little to catch up.

“So, today we are going to the kiddy camp. Young devilings are trying to shift for the first time, and you can help them out.” Dad says to a now frowning Damon. “Shows the parents you’re an okay guy who’s good with kids.”

“But I hate kids.” Damon deadpans.

“You and me both.” Dad sighs before looking to me.

“You make him look good. Keep him from ripping someone’s arm off and today you can go exploring, you bootleg Dora.” He continues. I ignore the comment and focus on the glee in my chest at the prospect of finally getting out there.

For years I’d been begging to get out there, to see what was left unexplored by the world.
By the time I was eight, I’d run over every patch of grass our lands contained three times over. I’d been denied the opportunity to go beyond since then and finally, finally... I’d be seeing just what the world had to offer .

“No cursing. No threatening. No glaring.” Dad lists one by one. “Only smiling and laughing. You need to be happier than fucking Spongebob.”

“Yeah, yeah.” Damon drawls. “At least I’m not the only one suffering through this one.”

“Amelia isn’t coming.” Dad reveals and I swear Damon popped a vein.

“Why not?!”

“She’s good with kids.” He says with a shrug. Pack children loved her.

I zone out of the argument that stirs from this, concentrating on what I’d be doing after the shitshow to come.

-------

“I think that went pretty well.” I say between laughter as I look at Damon’s vomit-stained shirt.

“Don’t.” He grinds out while Dad jumps in the spot, laughing hysterically.

“That was the best thing I’ve ever seen!” He exclaims in his fit of laughter that just enhanced my own.

Things started smooth with Damon being as civil as Damonly possible while trying to deal with the many children.
He helped a few calm down enough to shift, talked them through the initial pain and even told a group about his first time shifting. This, of course, was very popular because Damon was a bit of a legend, shifting at the age of ten instead of twelve like the average wolf.

Things were good. He was actually kind of enjoying himself and then he was given the task of helping the runt of the pack. He looked like an omega, small and fragile with fear gleaming in his eyes as he stared up at Damon.
He kind of reminded me of baby Peter.

Damon tried just about everything to calm the kid down so he’d be able to shift. He tried to be patient with him, he really did. But eventually, he snapped and yelled at the kid who did end up shifting... in fear, before emptying his stomach all over his future alpha.

If there was one trait Damon shared completely with Julian, it was their hatred of vomit. Of course nobody liked seeing it, let alone being the one to produce it, but those two- the mere word disgusted them so actually seeing it, made them go a bit crazy.

So we wrapped it up quickly after that and led a fuming Damon away, laughing our asses off of course.

“I hate children.” He declares angrily as he stomps ahead of us while dad and I hold onto each other to prevent us from falling over laughing.

“Stop pouting. I’ll take you hunting later.” Dad eventually squeezes out and Damon relaxes a little.

“I got to go.” I say pushing myself off Po. “I’m meeting Sammy.”

“We’ll see you at the house then.” He replies before jumping on Damon’s back like a kid and pushing him forth.

I laugh at the scene before looking around for Caspar, who’d left a while ago in search of a place to sleep and never came back.

I’m going out with Sammy - I say and it takes only a moment for him to reply.

Keep that witch away from me - He calls back and I chuckle. He and Sammy didn’t have the best relationship.

Be back in a couple hours - I say before heading to my car. Most people would shift and run but that wasn’t an option for me.

Once inside, I text Sammy and make my way to her house.

---------

“All I want to know, is where the hell all these pimples came from.” Sammy says pushing and squeezing at her skin. “Last night, my cheek was as smooth as my ass. Now, it’s the fucking Himalayas.”

“It’s not that bad.” I say trying to be nice but she just glares at me.

“Don’t you dare try to console me with your freakish wolf genes that make you immune to pimples.” She spits out and I smirk. “The most bullshit I’ve ever heard.”

“You’re just mad you’re a boring mundane.” I retort and she sends me a sideways glance.

“Not for long. Now that I know vampires are real, you can bet your right ballsack I’m going to be the next Katerina Podrava.” She declares solemnly, I just roll my eyes. “So, which club are we going to tonight?”

“Oh no.” I say sitting up immediately.

“Oh yes.” She replies with a wicked grin. “Me, you and a random stranger equals threesome.”

“No. I’m not going out tonight.” I say firmly. “I know what you’re trying to do, but getting me drunk won’t make me forget about Matt.”

“But it’ll stop you from pretending he never existed.” She counters and I bite my tongue. “You’ve been making yourself foolishly busy since you got back, you’re just pushing away the inevitable problem.”

“And what’s that?”

“You’re lonely.” She says gently.

“What else am I supposed to do?” I reply in what could only be described as a whisper.

“Acknowledge he existed, accept that what you had is gone and move on. First step of moving on- getting under somebody else.” She says like the certified therapist she imagined herself to be.

“I rather roam the earth alone forever.” I reply and she stands still before looking to me.

“That’s really sad Levi.” She says seriously before giving me an excited smile. “So you’ll pick me up at eleven?”

“Whatever.”

-----------

Dad and I walk in silence, Caspar sticking to my side like always as we near to the border of our packlands. My heart was soaring uncontrollably in my chest, my eyes wide and wondrous while my light footsteps led me closer.

“Now kid, your dad made me come up with a list of rules for you while you’re out there.” Aiden starts with a look of dread as he unfolds a paper from his pocket. “You must be back in three hours. You must walk with enough water and energy bars. You must stay with Caspar at all times. You must... ya know what, you read it yourself.” He says before slamming the paper into my chest.

I read through it quickly, smiling to myself at the amount of detail Julian out into these rules.

“I can do this.” I say before refolding the paper and tucking it into my back pocket. Dad nods and we keep walking in silence.
When the warriors on patrol finally came in sight, his steps slowed until we were just before the border. He turns to me suddenly and takes a deep breath.

“There’s a lot of rules on that paper but there’s only one I need you to follow.” He says looking at me seriously. “Do not engage that thing."

That Thing.
For as long as I could remember, there’d been a creature that lived beyond the pack lands that was said to be immortal. Immortal because nobody could kill it.
Everyone who tried either came back broken or bruised or didn’t come back at all.

In Aiden’s youth, he tried to kill the thing. Partially because the knowledge of something powerful living just outside your land would tick any alpha off. But it was mostly because the creature was a wolf, a rogue wolf, if you could even call it that.

From everyone’s descriptions, the thing was battered and bruised with patchy black fur that made it invisible in the night. With a size that exceeded that of a normal alpha and pitch black eyes that burnt into your soul.

To save lives and keep the packs reputation high, the rule for exploring beyond pack borders was created and monitored closely. Today, I’d be the first person to go out there in years.

“I won’t dad.” I promised, and I meant it. Unlike Damon, I didn’t want to get out just to hunt that thing. Actually, I wanted to stay as far from it as physically possible.

“Caspar will hear things before you. If he says something is off, come back. Don’t you dare let yourself be separated from him.” He says almost as if this was painful. My eyes widen in surprise at the tone of his voice before I nod quickly. “Levi, promise me you won’t get yourself hurt out there.”

He never called me by my name. It was always “kid”.

“I promise.” I say before hugging him tightly. His arms wrap around me tightly and I snuggle into his warm chest. “I’m just going for an hour or two tops. I’ll be fine.”

“I love you.” He whispers before pressing a kiss to the top of my head.

“I love you too.”

“Now go before I change my mind.” He says shoving me away and I smirk knowingly. I give him one small wave as I walk further away from him. I turn right before the border, looking down at Caspar who nods in his own way.

I look back at dad one last time, and then I take the last few steps which promised to lead me to world beyond the one I’d always known.

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