The Moon Baby

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Chapter 30 - Run

Illyria’s POV

As a child I had nightmares about ruthless villains kidnapping me. Given everything that I was surrounded by then, it was no wonder I had them. Back then, the nightmares were only about monsters coming in the night and taking me from my family.

As I got older, and frankly because of Mark’s continuous “warnings”, I would still sometimes have nightmares. Older, teenage me, had nightmares of rogues taking me. Hiding me away and force marking and mating. Because this whole rumor mill about super pups was a thing wolves believed.

I never once thought or had nightmares about someone kidnapping me with the intention of getting rid of me. Or trying to get rid of me and my pup. The concept was so asinine to me, that my brain, hell even my wolf, were in a state of shock from it. Well, that and the damned abuse.

I had passed out again after Riley explained her plans for me. This probably wouldn’t have been so bad if I hadn’t felt sick as hell before the ceremony. Being sick, well I didn’t eat much that day. I still don’t know exactly how many days it had been either.

Waking up again, I figured that I must have been out for hours considering I can see that it is dark outside. I was still facing the same wall that I was when I passed out but didn’t hear or smell anyone else in the room. Waiting a few more moments to be as sure as possible that it was safe, I tried to sit up from the floor. My entire backside hurt, a lot, which made it difficult. I don’t know how many times Riley had kicked me but I remember her kicking all along my back and even down my thighs. She must have kicked me in the head at least once because the back of my head hurt too. Hell, my whole head hurt.

At least I had protected the tiny life inside me, at least I hoped so. I wasn’t far enough along to sense anything myself but I didn’t feel sore anywhere else.

A few more tries and I was sitting up. I knew that lack of food was impacting me, but not enough that I had zero strength left. Our metabolism was high enough that we ate a lot and often, which meant a few days without food and water was impactful. Not detrimental yet, but impactful. I needed to get out of here before lack of nutrients impacted more than just me.

I slowly turned myself around, again, staying cautious. When I didn’t see Riley anywhere, I let out the breath I was holding in. All throughout her beating a couple days ago, she was yelling about how Ian belonged to her. She was completely obsessed with him. Unhinged was the best way to describe her right now. And that meant she was very dangerous, at the very least to me, if not everyone else.

I very slowly, and I do mean slowly got to my feet. Don’t even ask me how I managed that with my hands tied behind my back and said back feeling like hell. But I did. I’ll attribute that to all the behind the scenes training I did with Tori. Moving around the room I realized a few things. I was at least on the ground floor of, wherever we were at. The room I was in was at least one in a corner as there were two windows shining moonlight in. The room was also extremely bare.

I started searching all over, trying to find something, anything that I could use to help me free my arms. She had tied me up with rope, that at least I could tell based on the feel and burn. I could move my arms around in the rope a bit, not enough to struggle out of them, but enough that I could fit something and cut away at them. That little room made it so I could rummage around some.

As I continued my search, I paused often to listen for anyone walking toward the door. That was the very last thing I would try, opening the door. My luck Riley would be right outside it and go back to beating the crap out of me. Nope, let’s not do that again, one time was enough for a lifetime.

Only ever training with Tori had helped me in a few ways. I was able to improve my speed, being nimble, and we did some strength training. The thing it didn’t do was help me build up tolerance. I had been babied way too much and the impact was being felt now.

Preaching that a little hard work and all was good, but I should have pushed my way into practicing what I preached. I’m not saying that I was overly weak at all, but I feel like if I had trained more, I might have been better prepared for this. Not that anyone should have to be, but it isn’t like our world is without fighting.

Even though my sore body protested and my mind chastised itself about lost opportunities, I still puttered around. About the only thing in the room that I figured would have anything of value in it, was a small dresser. I had to turn around and use my hands to open the drawers and then look in each one. There were a few articles of clothing, women’s even, as well as a few knick-knacks. Having to turn around in order to use my hands to shift through stuff and then turn back around was making me pretty dizzy, but I kept going. It was a slow and arduous task for damn sure.

My stomach was starting to protest. Telling me that I hadn’t eaten in some time and that it wanted food. Lots and lots of food and filled to the brim. The damn pregnancy was likely making it worse too. Keep quit damn it! I mentally told myself over and over again, hoping that Riley would think I was passed out or. Maybe if I was lucky, she would also be gone while I searched for my escape options.

Jackpot! In one of the drawers was one of those stupid credit card sized multipurpose tools that you can buy from infomercials or at gas stations. Most of the time, those were just a random thing that people bought because they thought, hey maybe I will need a bottle opener that doubles as a cell phone stand and a small ruler all at once. But wait! There’s more! The more and the plus side with this one though, it had a jagged edge on one side that was intentionally meant to cut things.

Serious jackpot.

I pulled it out and tried slipping it up between my hands, testing to be sure I could fit it and move it around. Hopefully, it would work out so I could start sawing at the rope. I was very paranoid about Riley figuring out I was awake or just coming back in here, so I made sure to shut the drawer and then went back to the spot I had been sitting at before. That way if she did walk in, I could hide the tool in between my hands and she hopefully wouldn’t be the wiser.

Considering she wasn’t exactly all there; it was a valid hope. If she did come back in, she’d probably be more interested in me being awake. You know, perfect opportunity to talk more crap about how perfect she was.

I took several long and agonizing hours to saw through the rope. I assume hours because that’s what it felt like. I had to stop several times because my hands and wrists hurt so bad from the movement or because I thought I heard movement outside the door. Finally though, I got through one and they fell off. She wasn’t good at knots, that’s for sure. Great at kicking, bad at knots. I wanted to rub at my writs but all the wriggling had caused rope burns, because you know, the bruises weren’t enough.

I inched over to the door, my paranoia being high and all, and listened for a few minutes. When I heard nothing I went over to the window and peered out, looking around as much as I could. Seeing no movement outside either, I carefully attempted to open the window. Praying the entire time that it would open.

Thanks to the Goddess, it did. I was able to open it up enough that I could crawl out. There wasn’t a screen on it either so there was no noise besides my feet hitting the grass underneath and then my scurrying out into the trees.

I knew I needed to distance myself very quickly and the best way to do that would be to shift. I hadn’t shifted into my wolf in quite some time, I always had to hide her pure white fur. I still thought that was utterly stupid too, that the pure white fur was such a tell for who or I guess, what I was.

Pure white werewolves weren’t something that just happened. Run of the mill wolves, sure, not that cool. But werewolves, ya nope. Basically just those born with my same circumstance supposedly had the pure white fur. I knew that several of the pack members from Moonlight had some white fur, but not pure. At this point, I just needed to get away so my coloring couldn’t be an issue I focused on.

The only other thought that kept me from shifting would be of the pup, but being so early in my pregnancy, there would be very little danger to the him or her either. The second trimester, at least part of it, and the third were when it would matter a lot. The shifting now wouldn’t push enough around to matter to a tiny fetus.

It didn’t take much more thought than that and I shifted, shredding my clothes in the process. I know that would leave a hint that I was gone but the empty room would do that first. And the rope sitting cut on the floor. Hell, the clothes would probably be the last thing she’d notice.

Goddess it felt wonderful to finally shift again. I should have done this with Damien and Ian a long time ago. Would have let the secret out but hey, maybe that should have been the way I let it go. Since my ability to blurt it out was so well managed and all. This would be even better if I could actually enjoy it, now wasn’t the time for that or my overthinking.

Instead of ruminating on that and other thoughts, I ran and I ran hard. All I needed was to reach a town, just to figure out where I was. I wouldn’t and couldn’t trust random homes because there would be no way to know who owned them. No way to know who Riley had gotten to or if the occupants were trustworthy. I’d be able to tell wolf versus human, but that didn’t mean that they’d be safe.

I ran for a long time before I reached a small town. I really couldn’t shift back given that I had no clothes and didn’t know if it was a human or wolf town right off the bat. Plus, I wasn’t exactly fond of running around naked either way. I could, however; read. Hopefully, this was a big enough place that I could recall it from geography lessons. I have to appreciate Alpha Mark for that too. He made sure that I knew everything possible about the entire territory.

Maybe, if he wasn’t being such a dick, when I saw him again I’d say thank you. Maybe.

A little more luck for me. Small towns like this one tended to have the town name over everything. This one, Jamestown, was no exception. Jamestown grocery, Jamestown gas, Jamestown Pub and so on. My memory told me that Jamestown was about four hundred miles North of the City. I think RiverRun was just shy of two hundred away from there but of course in a different direction.

I didn’t have time to ponder, there was no telling when or if Riley had found me missing. Then who knew if she would try to follow me. Given her insanity and the desire she had to see me suffer, I wasn’t going to count on her leaving me alone. Using the streets and signs in town I got my directional bearings and took off towards what I thought would be RiverRun.

Damien’s POV

Mark had called Riley and gave her a pretty good act. We refused to let him be alone with her or the phone given there was still a big trust issue. The plan that he and Riley had discussed was to meet at some specific coordinates at midnight. I assumed that it was likely mid-way from where she was to RiverRun as Mark had told her that they had barely left.

We all, and by all I mean myself, Ian, Mark, Daniel, Adam, and our Dad, had moved out to get to the coordinates as soon as possible. We left Kota, Tori, Catherine, and our mother home to keep everything afloat. They were honestly the best ones to handle it right now.

The pack was worked up about their Luna, even if not official yet, being kidnapped. Since we needed all the adults possible to be looking, that meant that the whole pack knew, at least at some level, what was going on. The two former Lunas we’re the best choices to calm everyone while we went to get her back. It was just kind of what they did.

We discussed the scenarios and our plans on the way there. Mark and Daniel would have to meet with Riley alone or she wouldn’t come out at all, we knew that. Although she might not know who Adam was, we didn’t want to chance him being with. She hadn’t said they couldn’t bring anyone else, but the story they told was that the two of them had just left. Mysterious additional parties would tip off that something was going on.

The four of us that wouldn’t meet with her face to face were going to surround the area and keep tabs on what was happening. Mark and Daniel agreed that they’d get Irie back and keep her safe while we caught Riley. It didn’t matter how loyal she used to be, she committed a crime and would see her punishment for it. She’d committed several crimes by the sound of it.

She had spent a few minutes telling Mark just how much trouble she had to go through and blaming him for a few extra things that just had to happen. As soon as we had Irie back, we would also need to talk to the counsel about those crimes too.

The only good thing to come of this was that we really saw how Mark and Daniel cared more about Irie’s safety. They hadn’t mentioned once about whose mate she should have been or anything else for that matter. Between all the arguments, Irie’s admission, and this whole ordeal, we had all agreed to work together. As long as we got Irie back, safely, I’d do just about whatever it would take, including working with them.

Just shy of our destination, the four of us hopped out while Mark and Daniel drove on to the meeting spot. Adam and Dad went to one side while Ian and I went to the other. We were close enough to monitor Mark and make sure he didn’t do anything stupid. He knew it too. He picked up his phone and called, I assume Riley, and just said, ‘We’re here’. Another 20 minutes later she came pulling up in one of the pack vehicles.

She must have stolen it when she ran. How no one noticed a missing vehicle was going to be another topic we discussed with the pack. Maybe. They’re focus was on a person, not a vehicle. So maybe not.

We strained to listen in as she addressed Mark. We had to be far enough away that she wouldn’t easily scent us but yet close enough to hear, so it was difficult. “You never responded to me. Are you going to agree to keep up your end of our original bargain or not.”

“I am a man of my word and you are welcome to come back with us.” The man at least acted well. Although he wasn’t exactly lying. She was welcome to come back with us.

I saw Riley nod as Daniel pitched in, “Now where is Irie.” He was a pretty good actor too. Well maybe not 100% acting, I know his part of their mate bond was at least humming enough that he honestly cared. Just so long as he didn’t get too close to her, he could act all the way to the end.

“She ran. I don’t know where she is but I can help you track her. I know what direction she went.” She started explaining where she thought Irie had run to.

Fuck this. Dad, Ian, just get her. If she doesn’t have Irie we can arrest her now and track Irie down on our own. I don’t want to let her get away or waste any more time.

Dad let Adam know and we jumped on her. To Riley’s credit, she was a good warrior, but she wasn’t faster than 6 Alpha males. Normally, this much testosterone all together would lead to what happened before, a fight between us. Right now though, we all had one goal and it helped having all of us on the same side.

There was a bit of fuss but once we subdued her, which was a task on its own, we hauled her back to the car. Spitting mad might have been a saying, but right now it was an accurate description. We had to get her to shut up before anything else.

“Now tell us where you last tracked Irie to.”

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