The Bachelorette Ch. 04byHopelesslyAddicted©
Sorry for the mishap on chapter 2, I had an editor look over it and we both agreed I had somethings to fix and when I submitted the edit I submitted chapter 1 over again. It is however fixed now. Thanks again for all the feedback. (HA)
Blake was situating his men into Leon's teams when the third man, Jacques, came up to Leon and said that something was wrong with Sam. He saw Leon stiffen and offered to come with him for some extra back up. They shifted almost as one and headed off into the dense foliage. They came to a building with an SUV parked in front of it. He could smell the foul stench of death and decay slithering out of the grubby building.
He could tell that there had been a large quantity of women led out of the house, but nothing in the stale smells intrigued him until they moved forward and into the brush. They were trailing a scent that made his wolf shiver, it was a female scent. It was rich and heady, almost like patchouli, and hints of warm vanilla and cinimon His wolf sucked in as much of the faint trail as it could, but it wasn't enough. He wanted to smell it from the source.
The group rounded some trees and came across quite a scene. A female wolf surrounded by cubs and a man that was entirely too close to the female for his liking. "He was one of the first to be severely punished for his belief in the traditions of the wolf pack, and he died while being held by Edward and his men. He told me to help protect the children and thats what I have done since I became of age. The few original members left have been trying to get posted inside the women's quarters to help them, but Edward doesn't want us near them. Even the few that have mates have not been able to go near the building, and only his henchmen have mated with the women." He watched the scene with menace, he did not want this male near this female. His wolf did not like it at all.
The pups were attempting to wrestle each other under the female's paws, but they kept stopping and staring at the men. The female dropped her head down to nuzzle at the pups to comfort them. 'Can you please stop projecting? You're hurting the pups.' The female voice flitted into his head and his wolf was dumbstruck. He could hear her voice even though they had no Alpha bond or any blood ties whatsoever.
The man slowly got to his knees but his wolf saw it as a threat, a big one. He couldn't help the loud snarls that sprouted forth and he watched as the female's ears twitched. She turned her muzzle to look at them and Blake had to admire the beautiful female wolf. Her muzzle was black with sproutings of beautiful tan fur that spread out trailed along the back of her head. Her hackles were the same tan coloring but near her belly and paws was thick luxurious white fur. The tip of her tail was black, like her muzzle. She chuffed at him and turned to face the younger wolf again.
Blake did not like her easy dismissal of him as she turned to listen to the male. "My name is Ian, and I mean your mate no harm." He raised his arms, palms open in a show of submission and tucked his chin into his chest. "I brought her to the pups just as I said I would." His wolf still didn't like it, and liked the situation less as he watched Jack transform back to human form and address the female.
"You did well Ian." Jacque's voice seemed almost too loud. The female turned to look at him crouching on the grass. "We know that you mean her no harm. What I want you to do is to take the pups back to the SUV where you chased the other youngling. We will be right behind you." Ian nodded and rounded up the pups hesitating when he had to reach towards the female and Blake's growls became more menacing. She saved him the trouble by nudging the pups in Ian's direction.
Once the pups were on the move towards the car the female was right behind them. Blake was disappointed as she sped up ahead of them and closer to the car. Once he entered the clearing she was back in human form and helping the pups into the car. He was pleased to see that she was dressed so that the male didn't see her naked form, but he had wanted to see it for himself. He sat beside Leon and observed the loading of the pups. Once Jack had allowed the young male to get closer to the female the growls rumbled out of Blake once again. Ian clambered into the SUV behind the woman and she stuck her head out to speak to Jack. He saw him shake his head and close the door motioning for the car to go.
As the car sped off, Blake watched it go, his heart heavy. "You sure were displeased with Ian." Leon's rumbled laughter came from his right. Blake stood and shook out his fur before leveling Leon with a look. The deep hearty laughter vibrated through the air, and made Jack laugh off to his left. His wolf growled low and he put a paw over his eyes causing the laugher to become louder in volume. "Did you see something you liked, Blake?" Leon watched as his old friend hid his embarrassment under his wolf's skin.
"She's smarter and feistier than she looks. She will give you one hell of a chase." Jack looked down at Blake and saw his eyes flash in his direction. "I'm the one who turned her Blake." The wolf was on him in a second, and Jack knew it was coming and didn't try to stop it. "She didn't suffer, of that I promise."He whispered softly so that the wolf could hear it. The growls didn't stop, but they did lessen. "One of the potion makers in my clan worked with one of the few good doctors left working on creating something to lessen the pain for the female as they are forcibly turned." The wolf let go of Jack's shoulder and sat back on his haunches. "They looked at what occurred during a true mating, there is the love bond that binds and there is also an attraction, true?"
Leon nodded his head and watched as the hackles once again started to raise on the back of his friend. "Let him finish Blake." The wolf's muzzle shot in his direction and he couldn't help but grin. "It's easier if you know the truth. You will find out no matter what, and to be honest I would rather hear it from him than to find out later after you already like the guy." Jack laughed and Blake snorted agreement.
"In order to fake the attraction that occurs between mates they were able to concoct a potion that boosts all sexual receptors in the brain, causing the female to feel as if they are in heat. They are not forced into heat, but their brain thinks that they are." Jack took a breath and continued. "Their brains register every sense with sex, and so in essence their brain is overloaded with hormones. Once bitten, the wolf gene is able to take over with no serious pain because the genes are receptive to the wolf. Once the genes attach the women can almost immediately feel the wolf and embrace her. The transition is seamless because the drug is still in the system taking anything that would be perceived as pain and morphing it into pleasure." Jack lowered his head, "Most of the wolves don't use the potion, they are sadists. Sadly most of the women you have found were turned that way."
Blake shifted back into his human form and looked down at Jack, still laying on the ground. "In order for the potion to work at it's maximum and for your wolf to fully transfer the bite, you had sex with her didn't you."
"Yes." Jack spoke quietly, his eyes closed and his arm on his forehead. "I told her the truth and told her the options. She voted for the potion, I never forced it on her. Nor, did I force myself on her. I did not take into account how fast it would work. I heard a gasp, and I thought maybe she was having some adverse effect that we didn't know about and almost as soon as I walked in all you could smell was sex." Jack didn't look up to see if his death was coming, he was sure it was there hovering over him. "I had never used the potion, some of my men had and they told me their tales, but it never seemed to affect a woman the way that it did Sam. I think it's because she was destined to be a wolf's mate. Not mine, obviously, and we both knew that. My wolf could sense the qualities inside her that would make a good mate, and knew that she could be turned without problems. That is why I plucked her from the dungeon, something told me that she would be important and that I needed to protect her as much as I could.
"I got to know her the few days that we were waiting for Comeaux assistance, and I got a peek inside her mind. She is a strong woman. She is impassioned about her friends and family and has the courage to stand up for what she believes in. Not only that but she knows when to honorably take defeat if necessary. I will fully admit to admiring the woman, she has many qualities in which I envy." Jack finally looked up at Blake. "You're mate is a great woman, and an even better wolf. Congratulations, I just wish I didn't have to be the one to turn her. That should have been your honor."
Blake thought over the man's words and even as his wolf was crying out for the blood of the man that had forcibly turned his mate, he knew that Jack was honorable. He was facing up to his demons and not begging forgiveness, but being insightful and trying to make amends. "I understand, even if my wolf doesn't. I am not going to take your life Jack. You have redeemed yourself in my eyes with the way you are trying to take care of your people. The thought and effort that your clan has come up with ways to try and lessen the pain shows that there is some decency left within this compound, you just have to be able to use a microscope to see it. The rogues have taken much from this pack, and I will not take their leader."
"I am no Alpha Blake." Jack looked up at the larger man stunned that he wasn't going to lose his life. The fact that this man even thought that he was a leader was beyond his comprehension.
"You are here now, trying to save your people from an evil that invaded. You have fought against all odds to help your people come back from this disaster. How does that not make you a leader Jack? We are no longer talking about Alpha's and Beta's order. There is none of that here. The pack that once was, no longer stands. Your name has been demolished to rubble, yet you still are trying to look after your people. In my eyes Jack, that makes you an Alpha. Despite everything that has happened to you, you are still looking at what is best for your pack. Not you, your pack." Blake looked down on the obviously younger man and put out his hand to help him up off the ground. "Politics and muscle are only part of what makes a man an alpha, the rest comes from inside you. You've got the inside part down pat, the rest will come with time. Let's take back your pack."
Jack looked up into the wise eyes in front of him and latched onto his hand. Things were far from over, but he knew that it only went up from here. There was no more blame to be placed. His pack needed him to lead them and he was going to do it. The pack deserved a leader that could focus on them and that was what he was going to do. "Let's do this then."
Leon rubbed his eyes and laid his head back on the head rest. Tonight had gone well, not a good as he had hoped, but they did get all the women and children out. The alpha and the mysterious Edward were nowhere to be found. "I have something for that headache if you want it?" Petra's soft voice was very close to him. He opened his eyes to see her sitting there beside him. In her hand she held a mug of what appeared to be tea.
He accepted the mug and sniffed at it's contents. "It's all natural tea with some spearmint leaves. Nothing that will kill you." He lifted his eyebrow and took a sip, it was sweeter than he thought it was going to be. "I added sugar Leon, I always do." She smiled at him and looked out the window. "This is a mess Leon."
"Tell me about it, that's why I have the headache." Leon drained half of the tea and leaned his head back on the seat. "So, what really are your interests here?"
"It's not enough for me to want to help others of my race with the gifts that I have?" She looked over at him with a slight smile on his face. "I guess not." She chuckled softly. "To be honest with you I was pulled into this by your medic, and once I found out what was really going on here I just knew I needed to help." She looked back out the window. "Fate dictates all of us, and we are useless against them. Something had been drawing me closer to your compound for months, and when I got the call from Devlin it solidified my need to be here."
"You always speak of the fates as if they are more than one being? Isn't Fate singular?" Leon looked over at her serene facade.
"No. The fates are sisters three, each one controls a different part of life. Each one has a hand in our design." She chuckled once again. "A bunch of fickle bitches if there ever were. They are completely vague and love to watch people fret out the meaning of their riddles. They were not raised with human compassion, they are a creation of the gods. Even the gods have nothing on them, they just wish they did." She sighed. "Finding out information on our boy Edward was simpler than you'd think."
"How was finding information on him simple? I've never heard about him" Leon sat up a little straighter.
"He made quite a stink a decade or so back at a local council meeting. As soon as he was on council radar for his outlandish behavior it was easier to gather information on him. Before the council was tougher however. That's were a lot of my contact from across the pond came in handy." Leon chuckled and she continued. "Edward caused quite a mess over there before he was exiled here. He tried a hostile takeover of a larger pack with one of his own making. The plan was stopped in it's infancy and he was banished from England. However, this did not stop him from attacking English soil. It was rumored that he was working with some kind of witch to concoct a poison that attacked the females eggs. It was mildly successful but the effect didn't have quite the life that he wanted."
"He's attacking the reproductive organs of the females?" Leon wanted to smash something. The ability to have young was a vital part of pack life.
"Not that I have seen here, but at one time he was. It's not out of the question that he may try something in the future. Seems that the person he was working with was not a witch. Infact it was another were. A potion's master whose services were on the market and, as it turns out had a vendetta of his own. Seems the British council tend to piss off the wrong people and then exile them from their shores as if that can stop the rage and rampage." Petra sighed once again and rubbed at her own eyes. "The Brits also like to not inform the other councils of their exiled until it's too late."
Leon looked over at her and pondered what he had heard. "You said that Edward was looking for vengeance, true?"
"Yes, at one point he was bent on killing and torturing the ones that stole his wife and children." Petra nodded slowly.
"Who killed them?" Leon asked.
"Well to be honest, no one. It's difficult to believe but the poison that supposedly killed his family was not a poison.His wife found a mate in an elder vampire, and converted her children to take with her so that they didn't have to suffer the abuse of her husband any longer." She rolled her eyes and ran her hand through her hair. "As it turns out I know her and her children. I was making inquiries to the elders of some of the others to make sure his name didn't pop up on any of their circuits and Gwen informed me of her ex-husband's tirade."
"You are chummy with Vampires? Wait I thought you said that his wife was beheaded."
"I am cordial with a lot of Elders. With age comes a certain understanding of other cultures and how to handle them. When something could threaten the existence of more than one race, then all should be informed. Desarius was shocked to find out that the vampires were not the only ones dealing with unwarranted attacks on their females. " Petra looked over at Leon to see him contemplating her. "There was a body found in the home and it was assumed that it was Gwendolyn Renaldo because it fit her description. Her head was missing however, so that took away a bit of the identity. Desarius told me that it was a ruse to keep Edward off their tail. Soon after the kids had been getting blood slipped to them to begin the transformation process, once their bodies were dead and buried, they were dug up and the rest of the blood needed for transformation was given to them."
"The vampires are having a similar problem? And they discussed this openly with you?" Leon was shocked. Vampires were more tight lipped about their problems than any of the Other species.
"Desarius and I go back farther than I care to admit, and we discuss much. He is interested in knowledge and believes that in order to gain he has to give as freely. He does not speak to everyone only those he can trust and I know that he has my back if I should have need, same as I would have his. He has helped me out of a few scrapes here and there. I am glad to have such a friend even if he is a blood sucker." She smiled and looked back to the scenery floating past the SUV. "Back to the potion master, he is still in the wind. Many believe that both he and Edward are still working together."
"Who is this potion's master?"
"Shit, are we sure it's Kuznetsov?" Leon looked at Petra. "Shit. This is bad."
"Yes, which is why I think now more than ever we need to get the Alpha's together to stop this madness."
"You want the Vampire to come too don't you?" Leon waited for her answer and when it wasn't forthcoming he removed the hand from his eyes and looked at her. "Shit Petra, do you know how much shit this is going to cause? Kuznetsov almost wiped out all of Russia with his last known attack. We need to get our shit together and bringing in an outsider will only complicate things, you know that."
"Yes Leon, I know that bringing in Desarius could cause quite a stir, but he may be able to shed some light on what happened in Russia, and also what is going on here." She sounded exasperated and she took a deep breath before continuing. "I know that he knows more than he lets on and wants an opportunity to help other species, not just his own. He has assembled a vast library containing histories from all the others. He knows more than any other I have come across. He genuinely wants to help and isn't too high and mighty to bow to the wishes of another in order to aid. Plus, his own potions masters have created synthetics that he takes to lessen his need for feeding in large populations. He barely needs to feed once every year or so. He will be no harm to your people and he can be of aid."
"I don't know. Let us get back and I will think over broaching the subject with the Alphas as they all arrive." Leon let his head rest back on the seat and thought back to before all this mess. Back when things were simple... and he wished that he was still there.