The silence following my words was loud. Keelan and his mother looked gobsmacked, Archie looked confused. “How can the King have an older brother?” Keelan asked still confused.
Archie was the first to recover from the bombshell. “I thought he was exiled by the previous Alpha King because of the crimes he committed against the Pack?” I smile slightly, knowing what he is thinking.
Everybody knew of the history between Vincent and his younger brother the current Alpha King. Since Vincent was the oldest he thought he was going to be King. He passed all the necessary tests and everything, still, the Oracle told him he wasn’t his destiny to be King. That destiny would go to his younger brother.
As you can imagine Vincent wasn’t very happy about it. He even challenged his brother to a duel with the title of king on the line. Their mother who was Alpha King at the time consented to it, hoping that once it was over and there was a winner it would be all over.
For some reason, his younger brother won the duel, much to his chagrin. He had given his word that after this he would drop the whole thing, and he did. In the beginning, but during the last few years though, subtle sabotages were coming to light. The guards say that Vincent is behind it, apparently he never really let go of his resentment for his younger brother.
Guess I need to tell them some Pack history
“Before the current Alpha King became the Alpha King, his mother was the previous Alpha King. During her reign, he was the younger brother to this guy.”
I point to Vincent’s picture. “Everything was fine and rosy between the brothers, until, one day Vincent became of age and went to the oracle. Their relationship changed when Vincent came back from the oracle; he snapped at his younger brother and became more angry and violent. Everybody noticed the deteriorating relationship between the two brothers."
"Most feared that it would escalate into a fight and Pack members were divided into two groups; Vincent and the current Alpha King. There have been several bloody fights between the divided Pack members, and the Alpha King was frantic about what to do. She loves both her sons equally and this matter needed to be settled quickly.”
Keelan interrupted me before I could continue “Doesn’t he have a name? The current Alpha King I mean?”
I smiled “He does, but he stopped using it ever since he claimed the Alpha King title. It’s one of the rules form a long time ago. Once a person accepts the title of Alpha King, he or she throws away their given name. Hence the reason we never have any crap like Henry the serene and that kind of crap. We just have the Alpha King. Only a few chosen people know the given name of the Alpha King, for their and the King’s own safety.”
“Do you know the Alpha King’s real name?” Keelan seemed very interested in knowing the Alpha King’s name.
“I don’t mean to gloat or anything but yes, I am one of the chosen few who knows the Alpha King’s given name.”
Keelan glared “That counts as gloating.”
Archie managed to bring my focus back to the story with his question “So whatever happened to Vincent when he lost the duel?”
I frown as I thought about that “That’s a moot point in the story I am afraid. The records are conflicted about what really happened afterwards. One account says that Vincent was brutally killed and strung on a pick for all to see as a reminder for those thinking of crossing the Alpha King. Another account says that even after losing the duel Vincent kept harassing his brother and mother about the Alpha King title, so much so it became unbearable for the Alpha King."
"As his mother, she was willing to give him a second chance, which resulted in an assassination attempted on his younger brothers life. His accomplice pointed the finger to Vincent who by now was distrusted by most of the Pack and was exiled; his accomplice was killed on the spot. I think the second account was right; Vincent was exiled and is now back for vengeance.”
Everybody in the room looked uncomfortable until Keelan’s mother decided to speak up “If that’s all there is to it, what could that man possibly want with Keelan? He never even met the Alpha King.” She looked very worried in Keelan’s direction, worried for his safety.
“That’s why I think it’s high time for him to meet the Alpha King,” I said rubbing a hand through my hair. “I managed to get him an appointment with the Alpha King in a few days’ time.”
Keelan looked at me wide-eyed; clearly surprised, his mother looked even more scared than she already was. “You really think that smart Riles?” Archie bit his lip as I looked at him in question. “I mean, I am pretty sure everybody in the clan knows by now, and only God knows what they are up to now.”
Keelan rose, obviously angered as he paced around the room “Well I don’t care what they are going to do. I will meet with the King no matter what.” He abruptly turned back to face us “They can’t keep me from it!”
I rubbed my temples at his justified angered outburst. “I am afraid that they can. Since you’re not a part of the Pack yet, the King can’t sense you clearly like he can do me or anyone else in the Pack.” Keelan just shrugged “Then I will stay with you guys. Problem solved.”
“And leave your mom and sister unprotected?” Archie growled glaring at Keelan, not pleased with leaving the rest of the family behind. “It’s not that we don’t want you coming over, I am wondering if it’s smart if you stay with us, where will your mom and sister be staying? We don’t have the space for them too.”
Archie was still fuming when we got home; he kept grumbling things under his breath. Unlocking the front door, I stopped Archie from entering.
[What’s wrong Riles?]
I raised an eyebrow in question
[You don’t smell that?]
Archie frowned as he silently took a deep breath before widening his eyes as big as saucers
[What in the world could he want?]
[I don’t know, but am planning on finding out]
I stepped inside and saw Dillan sit in one of the armchairs near the fireplace.
Stepping into the living room Dillan spoke “Riley and Archon” he steeped his fingers together looking at us with half-lidded eyes.
Archie snorted “What are you? A very bad imitation of the Godfather?”
I stifled a chuckle at the split second of seeing Dillan surprised. “What brings you all the way here Dillan?” I carefully take a seat on the couch, my mind going a mile a minute looking for possibilities to explain Dillan’s presence in our house.
“Don’t worry Riley; I am not here to harm either of you. In fact, I am here to warn you. Don’t get in V’s way of things. He means business, and it’s not going to pretty when he decides that you two,”
He shifted his eyes between us “are a threat to him.” I narrowed my eyes; Dillan has always been a fan of Vincent. “So you are saying we should forsake the current Alpha King for your priced Vincent? Is that what you are saying Dillan?”
I rose up in anger, walking over to him, pulling him from the armchair by his shirt. “Because I won’t, unlike you spineless, pitiful coward; I won’t bow down to Vincent. There is a reason why he wasn’t chosen to be King; nobody trusts him, not after what he did to get him exiled. I am surprised that you are still loyal to him, but then again he was the only one who ever treated you like you’re a decent guy."
"Which we all know you’re not, and why would he be nice to a shit like you?” I pulled his glaring face closer to mine to be able to whisper in his ear “Because he also thinks you’re a monster Dillan, a useful monster, a replaceable pawn when you expire.” I push him away in disgust, wanting not more to do with him.
“Get out Dillan; I don’t want to see you anywhere near my property ever again.” I could see the hurt flash in his eyes as I spoke, I was too angry to care at the moment. Dillan snarled before storming out of the room, slamming the front door on his way out.
What the hell was that all about?” Archie angrily demanded, hands on his hips. “He came all this way to warn us and this is how you treat him?” I walk away to the kitchen, grab a glass and fill it with some tap water.
Archie enters the kitchen as I chug it down in a couple of gulps. “Well, are you going to tell me?” Setting the glass in the sink I turn to face him “It was the only way I could think of for planting a tracking device on him. I figured by saying all that, that he would run back to where Vincent is hiding so we know where he is so we can deal with him.”
Archie mouth opened and closed a few times. “D-deal with him? What do you mean deal with him?” Now he looks just plain worried.
I slouch against the kitchen counter, looking up at the ceiling “The way things are going at the moment, Vincent will be treated as a threat to the Pack. Once someone is a threat to the Pack he or she will get killed on the spot. Whether they have a family or not, none of that matters. The only thing that matters is the safety of the Pack.”
Archie was silent for a while as he came over and snuggled up to me “Does that mean you might have to kill him?” he mumbled against my chest.
I pressed my lips against his hair “That indeed might be the case, depends on what the King decides.” I stared into Archie’s big eyes as he softly pressed his lips against mine in comfort. I squeezed him close, greedily taking all the comfort he was willing to give. Later that night we made slow and sensual love, taking our time to make it last.
I wasn’t overly worried about the fact that Dillan wasn’t seen in and around the Pack Lands. I had heard from Fred that they had found out where Dillan was hiding, in an old abandoned house, with several other powerful Pack members.
Meaning the tracking device did its job well. The only thing that worried me now was how we are going to be sure Vincent was there too, no one had seen him since he had shown up on Hamilton’s doorstep. For some reason, I couldn’t shake the ominous feeling, that something was going to go wrong soon.
I put those thoughts out of my head as I focused on my current tasks. Like getting Archie and Keelan to school on time and picking them up. Everything was fine until one day I was at Keelan’s house to pick him up for school, his class started later today for whatever reason.
Nobody answered my knocking; usually, Keelan’s mother opens the door before I even get the chance to put the car in park, smiling brightly at me. I frown as I knock again, harder this time.
“Keelan?” I quietly whisper as the door opens a crack, peering inside my eyes switch to night vision as I take in the dark empty hallway.
[Babe have you found Keelan yet?]
I silently creep around the hall to the door that’s open ajar and peer into the mess that’s the living room.
[No I haven’t. Something happened and they’re gone.]