The sun was rising over the treetops of Dark Moon Pack and if you listened carefully, you could hear the slow rise of the pack members.
A soft line of smoke was seeping through the chimney tops, as pack members prepared for their first cup of morning coffee. Muffled sounds of soft, groggy voices could be heard through bedroom doors, as families wished each other a happy new day. Even the birds sang in a delightful unison, proudly announcing the start of a new day.
Dark Moon is a happy pack run by Alpha Richard and although it is one of the smallest in the kingdom, it is also one of the most important, because this pack helped run the Kingdom's finances. Wolves in this pack were above the average IQ and were respected for their intelligence.
Situated in the Eastern side of the Territory, Dark Moon flaunted magnificent forests, green rolling hills and lush vegetation. Wildflowers of white, pink, red and auburn sprinkled the moss ground and the sun helped the flowers boast in colorful delight.
The sound of giggles and whispering filled the air around me and made me and my wolf, Rose, on edge. I lifted the pillow and pulled it over my head, but this did nothing to help me fall back asleep. Huffing, I lifted myself off the bed and pulled on my robe before exiting my room. I allowed each lazy step to guide me through the passageway and into the lounge of my family home. My father is the beta, so we have been fortunate enough to have a decent upbringing in terms of furniture and possessions. I turn the final corner of the cream walls and peep into the open space, zoning in on the culprits to my bothered sleep.
There on the couch is my younger sister, Pippa and her two friends, Lucy and Gail. I look at the way Pippa's shoulders bob up and down with each laugh and her eyes dart around in glimmering delight. I wish she were always this carefree when I am talking to her. What could be so damn funny at this early hour?
“Pippa, what has got you laughing like this at 6 in the morning? I was up all night doing border patrol and I could have really used some extra shut-eye.” I sigh and look at Pippa for a response. I don't mean to be grumpy in the mornings, but I am becoming severely sleep-deprived.
Much like always, she ignores me and continues her conversation with her friends. This is the sad thing about Pippa and my relationship. We are sisters, with the same mother and father, but she couldn't care who I am. She once told me that she wished she were the only child. I, on the other hand, love the fact that I have someone else in my family.
I roll my eyes and walk past the couch to get to the kitchen. As I pass by the girls, I notice they are paging through, “WereTimes Magazine,” and are giggling over the pictures of King Xavier. This makes me roll my eyes again.
King Xavier is known all across the kingdom for being an absolute heartthrob. His tasseled dark hair, sky blue eyes and seriously chiseled physique don't help his case, as every she-wolf around wants to be with him. I don't get it!
“Don’t lie to yourself, Flora. You also think he’s delicious.” Rose chimes up in my head.
Yes, he is good-looking, but seriously. Every girl in the Kingdom wants a piece of King Xavier and some she-wolves even go as far as trying to trick him into thinking they are mates using magic! He is handsome, fair and strong as our King, but nothing is worth risking your Goddess-given mate. Not even a King. I for one, cannot wait to meet my mate and commit my whole life and soul to him.
Gail’s voice brings me out of my thinking and I pour myself some coffee from the pot. I bring the hot liquid to my lips and feel how the bitter-sweet taste dances on my tongue.
“He says on this page that he has no interest in having a mate!” Gail shrieks. Her hands have come to her mouth to cover up her gasp.
“Ah what a pity!” Lucy adds, her lips forming a pout.
“Mmmm, that doesn’t matter. With that body, I’m sure he’s still excellent in the sack.” Pippa giggles and everyone bursts into laughter. Pippa has a mischievous sparkle in her eyes and her arousal can be sensed from a mile away!
I almost spit out my coffee at Pippa’s words. How can she be so insensitive?
“Pippa, what would your mate Kyle think of this? Imagine if he heard you? Imagine if he was speaking about other girls like this.” I spit out at Pippa. I am in so much shock, I need to put my mug down. Kyle is such a great guy!
Pippa looks at me blankly and scowls before getting up and moving towards her bedroom. Her posy of gaggling followers imitating the same amount of drama and sass, before following behind her. What a joke.
Pippa is 18 years old, but sometimes she acts as if she is barely 13. On her birthday, a month ago, she found her mate and Kyle has been nothing but devoted to her every need since. She let him mark her, but she does not take the bond seriously and everyone around the pack can see how difficult a time Kyle is having. I doubt that they even share in intimate moments as other mates do. I do not understand my sister. I am 20 years old and I am so looking forward to the day I find my mate. My life gets so lonely sometimes and I often get excited about moving away and starting a family with people who care about me. My mother died when I was in my teenage years, leaving Pippa and me alone with my father. My father is the pack’s Beta and is always away on business. He has always provided for my sister and me, but he is calculated and cool towards me in the few days I see him a month. Pippa has always been indifferent to me and we share no connection, no matter how much I’ve tried. I sometimes become so sad at how little family I have.
“Don’t worry Flora, Mate will give us a family. You will see.” Rose chimes in my mind. I can see her lying on her paws.
Rose is always so positive and knows exactly what to say to make me feel better.
I smile and make my way back to my bedroom. I better get this day started. The warriors need help with the bridge construction and Future Alpha Luke has organized a meeting with me at noon. I wonder what is so urgent?
Future Alpha Luke:
“Luke, you have to be at the meeting at noon. You are the future alpha of this pack and I will be at the airport with your mother. You know we have been planning this holiday for over a year now and I will be damned if I miss it because my son doesn’t feel like being a grown-up!” Alpha Richard barks, his alpha aura making the air thick with tension.
I huff out of frustration, but my father is Alpha and I have to submit. My wolf whines as I look down.
“Fine dad, but do you mind telling me what is so important that King Xavier needs to come here? I mean, our pack isn’t in trouble is it?” I ask sincerely. The royals never do impromptu visits.
“Well son, I actually wish I could tell you everything is alright, but it’s not. His beta caught wind of possible money laundering in the Kingdom accounts. Upon further investigation they saw the person stealing from them is from this pack, but they aren’t sure who it is yet. They are coming to figure out who the thief is. Luke, it is a massive criminal offense to steal from the King and someone in our pack has done this. Do you know how bad this is for the reputation of Dark Moon? If you do not help them catch the thief and bring a suitable punishment, our pack will be finished! I am leaving you with this last task and if you succeed, I will officially name you Alpha. Luke, can you do this? Can I trust you son?” My father pleads.
The mentioning of all this makes my breath catch in my throat and my mouth goes dry. They are coming to catch the thief that has been stealing money from their bank accounts. I can feel a knot forming in my throat.
“S-sure dad.” I say softly before I lift myself off the chair in his office. I need some air after this news.
“Thanks, son. Tell that future beta of yours, Flora, to be here to support you. You could use her smart mind to crack this case. Remember son, our pack depends on you.” Alpha Richard says before he leaves through the office door, his fading steps catching onto the rhythmic thumping of my heart.
I too, leave the office and with every step, I take towards my room, the heaviness of the situation sits on me. There is a pounding weight on my shoulders and my heart is thundering in my chest. My wolf is not helping me feel better, as he whimpers into my hazed mind.
I open up my mind link, “Flora, meeting at noon sharp.” I try to sound calm, but my voice comes out with urgency.
She mind links back to me, “Sure thing Alpha Luke.”
I smile at hearing her voice. Flora is such a natural beauty and the most genuine person I know. Even my wolf adores her. We aren’t dating or anything, because Flora is old school and wants her mate. She has always been the hottest she-wolf in the pack, with her full breasts and magnificent curves. Others love her for her mind, which is great, but it is her body that gets me going. My mate died when she was a young teenager in a fatal car accident, which was difficult at the time, but I decided I could always just marry another she-wolf. I want Flora to be the Luna that stands next to me in Dark Moon.
“Let’s just become Alpha first big boy.” My wolf chimes in my mind. I chuckle at his remarks, but the laughs soon become nervous.
The word "alpha" brings my mind back to everything my father just said in his office and the blood drains from my body once again. I close the door behind me and fall on my bed with my face in my pillow. I am going to need every ounce of luck for this meeting and investigation.