The Alphas of South Forest

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Akamai's Story - Chapter One

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Akamai’s POV.

“Your sister still getting pounded by the twins?” The asshole that is my colleague and friend, Brian, asks when I enter the garage.

“Shut it, before I kick your ass,” I growl and storm past him.

“I’m joking! Don’t wolf out on me!” Brian says with a laugh.

I scowl and ignore him. Some days, I really wonder why I bother entering the human town.

Oh wait, it’s because I love cars.

I slip my coveralls on over my jeans and t-shirt and grab my gloves. I work as a mechanic at Brian’s garage every Saturday. Being the Beta of my parent’s pack takes up a lot of my time, but Saturdays are for me. It pays well and I get to do what I love. Sometimes, it can be refreshing to hang out with humans.

Brian just happens to be a special breed of asshole and he loves hounding me about my kid sister. What brother would want his sister to be with two guys? It’s shit, but I’ve never seen her so happy, so I’m happy for her.

I just wish I could find my mate, too. I haven’t admitted it to anyone, but it fucking hurt to have my baby sister find her mate(s) first.

I’m twenty-three, I’m four years older than her, I should have found mine by now. I wonder where she is, what she’s doing, what she looks like...

“Oi, get your head out of the clouds and come help me on this engine, will ya?” Brian’s pussy-ass voice breaks through my thoughts.

“Screw you, dickhead, I’m coming,” I retort and walk over to help him.

“You’re coming out for some beers with us lads tonight, right?” Brian asks and I scrunch up my nose.

“I’m not sure, you humans are always so...loud,” I complain, and he rolls his eyes at me.

“Ooh sorry, ‘I’m a werewolf, I’m so much cooler than you’, get over yourself, wanker, you’re coming.”

I smirk at his poor impression of me. Brian found out about werewolves when he was attacked by one as a kid, we’d only been friends a few months before he called me out on it. He said I showed ‘all the signs’ of being one.

We’ve been firm friends ever since, it’s nice to have a human that I don’t have to watch myself around. The friends he’s referring to for tonight’s drinks, are clueless, however. It’s alright, I won’t drink that much, I have to be on my guard around humans.

“You still banging that blonde chick?” Brian asks with his face buried in the hood of a Mustang.

I hand him the right tools and watch that he’s doing it right, over his shoulder.

“Her name’s Cynthia,” I grumble, my parents raised me to respect women. “And not for a while, as I get older, it just doesn’t feel right, you know?”

Brian gestures for me to explain with his hand. I roll my eyes but decide to elaborate.

“I’m twenty-three, most shifters meet their mates before twenty, so I’m overdue. That means, with any luck, I’ll meet her soon, within the next year maybe. I don’t want to be sleeping with someone else and meeting my mate the next day. I’d be upset if she was, so I guarantee that, whoever she is, she wouldn’t like me sleeping with Cynthia.”

“For all the shit I give you, Akky-” Brian laughs as I growl at his nickname for me. “You are a good guy, and your mate is gonna see that.”

He stands up and pulls his head from the engine. He smiles at me and slaps my arm. “She’s gonna be a lucky girl.”

I smirk and nudge him. “Cheers, bro.”

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Carlotta’s POV.

“Seriously, you have spent the last week in this flat unpacking, you are coming out with us tonight,” Joy whines at me and I sigh in defeat.

“Fine, I’ll come out, but you’re not making me wear a dress,” I order as a compromise.

My legs are covered in bruises from moving all this furniture around and walking into endless boxes on the floor. One week ago exactly, I made the move to my Auntie’s town. I was sick of my hometown and my old life. I quit my dead-end job as a waitress and found one here...as a waitress. But it pays better! I only have to work mornings too, it’s a breakfast café and luckily, I’m a morning person.

My parents have just moved abroad, nothing was tying me to my home anymore. So, I decided to rent a flat in my Aunt’s town and try life here for six months, just for a change. I’ve visited her here in the past and I’ve always loved this town, it’s surrounded by forests, and I love hiking.

Tilly is my cousin, she’s one of those people who is great to be around, but once she’s left, you feel like you need to sleep for a month to recover.

She’s dragging me out with her friends tonight. I’ve met them before, they’re quite snobby. I’ll just show my face, have a couple of drinks, and then leave.

I repeat the plan in my head as I enter the bar Tilly had texted me about. I’m wearing heels, jeans, and a crop top. It’s a simple outfit, but I think I look alright. It did take me about an hour to get the paint spots out of my hair, though.

I spot the girls and go over to them. Tilly’s friends smile politely, but I can see the hostility in their eyes. I don’t know what it is, but they seem threatened by me, do they think I’m trying to steal Tilly or something? We’re twenty, we need to grow the hell up.

“I’m going to get a drink, anyone need one?” I offer, but they all already have their drinks.

I pull my handbag chain a little higher on my shoulder and strut over to the bar, feeling people’s eyes on me. I was hoping this town would big enough that no one would pay much interest to a new person.

“Kiss me if I’m wrong, but your name is Jane, right?” A smooth, husky voice sounds next to me, I turn to my right to face him.

The man is so tall, I’m 5"8 and in heels but my head only reaches his jaw. He has curly, brown hair, ice blue eyes and a killer smile. He has a deep tan and a wicked physique.

Fucking hell.He’s gorgeous. And hitting on me.

My brain manages to catch up and I smirk. “Is that supposed to be cute? Funny? Sexy?” I ask with a smile, and he grins at me.

“Well, what you’re supposed to do, is tell me your real name and then kiss me, because I was wrong,” he teases, and goosebumps raise on my arms at the sound of his deep voice again.

“What if my name is actually Jane?” I retort and he frowns.

“Then that would suck, because I would have been right, so no kiss,” he says and then pauses. “However, it might mean that we’re meant to be, because I instinctively knew your name.”

I can’t help it, I burst out laughing. He’s actually kind of funny.

“My name is Carlotta, sorry,” I reply. “And no kiss, I’m afraid.”

He pouts at me and then shrugs. “Alright, no kiss, but then let me buy you a drink, Lottie,” he says and my cheeks flush at the nickname.

“You really don’t have to...” I trail off, waiting for him to tell me his name.

He grins, showing a cute dimple in his cheek. He puts out his hand to me. “Akamai, it’s Hawaiian,” he explains, and I smile.

“Nice to meet you, Akamai,” I reply and shake his hand.

The second our skin touches, tingles, and warmth flood through my skin, making me almost let go. It’s the strangest sensation. I look up at Akamai in shock, and I swear his eyes darken.

“So, what drink do you want?” He asks casually, as if we haven’t just had a moment.

“Um, a gin and tonic, please.” I shake my head, trying to sort my brain out.

What the hell was that?

Akamai buys my drink and then slides it over to me. He orders a beer for himself and leans against the bar to look at me.

“So, Lottie, will you do me the honour of letting me get to know you? I can’t go back to those twats over there, they’re driving me crazy,” he jokes and jabs his thumb over his shoulder in the direction of three guys around a table.

“Um...” I glance nervously at the girls. Tilly catches my eye and gives me a grin and a thumbs up. “Sure, just for a little,” I reply.

I guess it’s better to talk to a cute guy than be with Tilly’s judgemental friends. We walk over to an empty booth and sit down. Akamai shuffles around so he is close to me, our arms brushing.

“Okay, so that couple over there, what do we think? First date? Or maybe third?”

I look at him like he’s crazy and then follow his gaze across the bar, to a couple sitting at a table. They’re both sitting quite rigidly, looking tense. They’re opposite each other and engrossed in the drinks menus, despite having drinks in front of them.

I realise his game and play along. “Or, they’ve been together for a year, and she’s just found out he’s cheated and they’re trying to work through things but it’s still really awkward.”

Akamai frowns at my suggestion. “Why is he the cheater? I don’t think he’s got it in him. Look at that shirt, it says ‘Mum still buys my clothes’ all over it. I think she’s the vixen, look at that red lipstick,” Akamai jokes and I roll my eyes.

“Actually, you might be right, she definitely wears the trousers in the relationship,” I reply, and he nods enthusiastically.

“Oh, definitely. Okay, what about them?”

And so it continues. Despite what I said, I stay with him for most of the night. We continue his game of ‘guess the story’ with people who enter the bar, it’s a bit of light hearted fun that has me laughing until tears roll down my face.

At some point, we talk about ourselves, our lives, families. Oddly, we don’t talk about jobs, but I like that. Adults love asking me what I’m planning to do with my future, I always find it a stressful question. I hate saying that I’m a waitress with no plans. Not that there’s anything wrong with being a waitress, I just don’t know if I can do it till I’m sixty.

I subtly text Tilly and ask if she’s okay with this. She replies telling me to go for it and that he’s hot. Her friends don’t seem to miss me. Time flies by and I feel like I’ve known Akamai my whole life. He doesn’t make any moves on me either, he genuinely just tries to get to know me.

At midnight, I check my phone and see the time. “It’s quite late, I’ll probably be going soon,” I tell Akamai and a sweet look of disappointment crosses his features.

“Okay, can I at least get your number? I want to see you again,” he asks, and I happily exchange numbers with him.

“Let me walk you out to the cabs,” he offers.

I don’t tell him that actually I’m walking home, he seems like he’d make me get a cab just to be safe. I go over to Tilly and tell her that I’m leaving. She eyes Akamai stood behind me and smirks.

“I’m so proud of you girl, ride him like a bronco,” she whispers in my ear. It’s strange because I see Akamai trying not to laugh in my peripherals.

How the hell did he hear that?

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