The Bachelorette Ch. 06byHopelesslyAddicted©
Blake jolted out of his sleep. It had been bothering him, his reaction to the woman he saw earlier. Now he knew why. She was his mate. Leon knew, that louse! He wanted to smack his head, but instead he wiped the beads of sweat off of his face. He thought back for a moment, and remembered that Jaques had called her his mate, but he hadn't listened. Blake removed himself from the tangle of covers and walked into his bathroom. His lack of clothes may have bothered any normal human, but Blake Halley was anything but a normal human. The wolf ran deep in his bloodline.
He looked at himself in the mirror and noticed the bags under his eyes. When he got Leon's message that he was trying to host a gathering of the Alphas he had seen it as a great thing. Time for him to take a step away from the nonsense of his pack. He needed a breather from the women who were vying for his attention. His father was on his back to go out and find his mate, and pushing all the eligible females in the compound at him. He had to check his room every night because his father would hide a female in there to seduce him as he tried to sleep.
Blake wished that his father was just worried about him being alone, but he wasn't sure anymore what his motivations were. His father wasn't that much older than Pierre Comeaux, but lately his father's usually spry and youthful countenance was gone. If Blake didn't know better he would think that his father was very sick. He splashed some water on his face and patted it dry with a hand towel. Nothing in the last few months had been as expected. With the realizations of just how bad things had gotten in other parts of the country, Blake knew that this meeting was going to be a real eye opener. Hopefully, it was what the alpha's needed to kick start a new time where the communication between themselves increased and they helped each other more.
When he arrived here, he didn't realize the severity of the situation outside his pack. Things like that needed to change. There needed to be a better system for Alphas to contact one another and seek help where needed. Most old school Alphas would have a problem with this, he knew, but things needed to move forward and change for the better. Now with the severity weighing down on him, and the thought that his mate had suffered at the hands of such atrocities, he knew this was something that needed stopped. Before he realized that his mate was among those abused, he was willing to help put an end to this, but now his need to help bordered on vengeance. Those monsters must pay for what they have done to his mate.
His mate, just thinking about her made him want to find her. He needed to know what cruelties she suffered, he needed to be sure she was ok. First thing he wanted to do tomorrow morning was find Leon and learn what he could from him before he approached his mate. She had fire in her, and he knew she was going to be a hard one to tame, but in the end things normally went Blake Halley's way.
Leon rubbed his temples for what seemed like the millionth time this morning. It seemed as if his pack had decided that they were going to voice every little concern they could this morning. "Alpha, we need to increase our food stores if we are going to continue to feed this large amount of people. We simply do not have enough of anything." "Alpha, the recruits are too busy staring over at the women's quarters to pay attention." "The construction of the great houses are behind schedule Alpha."
"ENOUGH!" Leon sent the command mentally as well as verbally to those in the room and to all in his pack. "I will deal with things one at a time. There are more pressing matters that need to be addressed. Take the recruits to the southernmost field, they won't have a vantage point of the females to bother them, and next time please use your head or ask one of the Betas for advice before coming to me for something so trivial. I was updated on the construction last night and I am aware of it's progress or lack thereof. The food storage issue will be resolved. I will discuss with my Betas and get back to you in the kitchens. For now, work with what we have and I will have a solution for you by the end of the day. Now, everyone leave my office before I kill you all." he leveled a look and everyone scattered. He needed a few moments peace before he went head first into a meeting with the Alphas that had already arrived.
He collected his thoughts and straightened his papers before standing and walking to his conference room. There wasn't a soul in there yet, besides Jack, which was a great thing. "Jack."
"Leon." Jack nodded his head but remained back against the wall near the podium.
"Blake has figured out that Sam is his mate and I know he's going to want some answers this morning as we are talking to the Alphas. Doubtless he is not going to like everything that we say, just be forewarned."
"I knew from the moment that I saw Samantha that she was a wolf's mate. There was no doubt in my mind that she was, and seeing her now, she is an Alpha. No question. I knew that when the time came and she found her mate questions would be asked and I would provide the answers to the best of my ability. Blake isn't just not going to like it, he's going to want my hide. You and I both know that." Jack looked down at the floor.
"True, he may want a piece of you, but I have always considered Blake to be a level headed person and in time, things may become ok." Leon set down his stack of papers and patted Jack on the shoulder. "Give it time, my friend, and perhaps you can even forgive yourself."
Sam heard Halea wake up; it was hard not to. It seemed as if she had a bad dream and fell out of bed, then stumbled through her room and went for the bathroom. She sighed when she heard the toilet flush and Halea stumble back along the hall. So much for sleeping in. Sam though back to the strange dream she had the previous night. Her thoughts drifted back to the wolf in her dream. She wondered who the man behind the wolf was, she knew he was a were like she now was, but she didn't think that she had met him face to face as of yet. She was curious and would have to talk to Jack or Leon to figure it out, he was with those two last night. Surely they knew who he was.
She rolled over in her bed and looked down at the pups still asleep in their nest of blankets. She wanted to go make coffee, so she crept out of her room and remembered to leave the door cracked open so the pups could find their way down to her. As she entered the kitchen she started a pot of coffee and opened the fridge to look over it's contents. She heard someone enter the kitchen and peaked around the door to see Halea standing there in the doorway in some sweats. "Hey Halea, good morning! I was making coffee and about to make breakfast if you are interested. Oh! And Leon told me last night that the punching bag you requested is in the basement."
Halea perked up and nodded. "Is there yogurt in there?" Sam nodded and tossed her one as she sat down at the island. "Can I ask you a random question?" Sam pulled out the eggs and turned to face Halea. She seemed to be searching for the right words. "Have, have you been hearing voices?"
"What do you mean?"
"Its stupid... nevermind." Halea busied herself with her yogurt.
"Sometimes if I try hard enough I can talk to Jack and I can hear him in my head, is that what you mean?" Sam pulled out a pan and then some oil.
"Maybe, maybe I am just delusional." She ate a scoop and then looked deep in thought. "Its not the voice of the man that turned me, and I know it's not Leon. I'm not sure who it is, or if it's even a real person." she scooped the last of the yogurt out of the container and looked down at the empty cup. "Maybe it's just my imagination..."
"I don't think that's it... Maybe it's a wolf here that you have a strong connection with." Sam busied herself at the stove making eggs.
"Like we have had the opportunity to meet anyone. The only ones we have met have been females and Leon and his father. That is such a big pool of male voices to choose from." She scoffed and walked her spoon over to the sink.
Sam startled her with a small plate of eggs. "Well, there were three men here last night that I didn't know until then. Maybe one of them was your mystery voice. When did it start?"
"Last night while I was in the tub. It wasn't the doctor, his voice just didn't fit. Why were there two other men here? Assuming of course that the Doctor was the third." She grabbed a fork from the drawer and leaned her hip back against the counter as she nibbled at the eggs.
"They showed up with Leon last night after you went up stairs. Ayden Dawson and Charles Comeaux, I believe their names were. Juliette seems to think that Ayden or his twin are Valerie's mate!"
"Hmpf, like I said before who needs a mate? I have been single for my entire adult life and I see no need to change that now that I have become a wolf creature."
"Well, from what I understand wolves don't want to be solitary creatures, so they look for mates whether they be pack mates or soul mates. " Sam gathered her plate of eggs and sat next to her.
"Please tell me that you are not falling for that bullshit. Sam, I love you like a sister, we have been through so much together, but please tell me you are not falling for this crap? We were perfectly normal and rational people before this, now we turn into a wolf at the full moon and I freaking hear voices! This is so not right! They are just forcing one thing after another down our throats until we get with their program, but I can't follow that. Yes I believe in love and that one day I will find someone to complete me, but it's not going to be a hybrid of a man and a wolf. I was born human, not a wolf. I wasn't supposed to be a wolf." As Halea stood up from the stool her face was red and blotchy. She slammed her plate and fork into the sink. "I will be damned if some mongrel is going to tell me how to live my life. I have worked hard to be where I was, I had a job, a life! Just so some mutt can take it away from me? I was this close to being signed by the magazine I have wanted to work at since I became a writer and they used my photography more than once! It's all gone now! I have nothing! I don't have my camera or my laptop, hell I don't even have my apartment with built in gym. I can't go anywhere or do anything, and everyone is just going to lie down and take it? Take the fact that they can do nothing about the situation that we are in? Screw that!"
"Halea, we have a network here. I'm sure if you talked to Leon about work he might be able to find a place within..."
"Don't Sam. Don't talk to me about working in this pack. We are their prisoners here just like at that other place, this is just slightly more accommodating and has less chains. It's still a prison. I don't get how you can't see that. You lost more than I did, hell you were going to get married! You were about to start a beautiful new journey with the man you loved and now you are stuck here. Your life had no strings, you could go where you wanted and do what you wanted, here there are so many limitations! How is it you can sit there and be okay with this situation? How can you be okay with never seeing civilization again! No more malls or getting your nails done. No more sitting in a food court and rating the boys as they walk by. No more music stores or lingerie shopping. What is there to do here that you are okay with?" Halea was frustrated and Sam knew that, but she also did raise some odd but valid points.
"I can understand your frustration and anger, but you have to understand I have focused on the positive that can come out of this situation. My time for mourning my old life has passed, I have been there. I cried when I realized that I will never live the life I had always thought and dreamed of, but I understand now that this is a chance for me to make the best of my situation. I have always wanted to help people and I am a hard worker. I can put my skills to use here, not in the way I had originally envisioned, but still. I know that it's rough, but I know you Halea. We have been through alot together and I know, just as well as you, that you are a strong person. Your mind just needs to catch up to the rest of you. I have come to terms with my demons, and you will too. You need to give it time and let people help you through this. It seems difficult now, and even coming and talking to me, I know how difficult it was for you to do." Sam stood and put her hand on Halea's shoulder and pulled her in for a hug. "I have faith in you, even if you have lost faith in yourself. You can do this kiddo. You may not believe it now, but you will come to love the life you have been dragged kicking and screaming into. It might just surprise you." Sam left Halea in the kitchen with her thoughts. She needed time, it wasn't going to happen overnight, but it would happen.
Blake had sat through the Alpha's meeting in stony silence. He watched the faces of disbelief, none could have expected this. For all the hiding that the weres as a species did, they were a very arrogant people. No one wanted to believe that something this atrocious could happen in such a powerful race. Blake was disgusted with those that refused to believe that this was happening. "I was THERE. I helped bring those women out of that mess. You can be arrogant assholes all you want. I WAS THERE. Stop this petty squabbling and help each other! We as a race need to make a stand and work together on this. It needs to stop, these monsters need to know that we will not stand for this! Why are you arguing that this isn't a problem?" He slammed his hands down onto the tabletop and silence ran through the room.
"I think that it is time to let Jack do some talking." Leon spoke as he stood and Blake sat back down. He didn't miss the look of appreciation that came about on Leon's face that was followed by a slight grimace. "Jack was closer to the situation than any of us, his pack was the one that was overtaken in the first place."
"Thank you Leon, Alpha's, My name is Jacques Fontenot. At one time the Fontenot clan was part of the Comeaux line, when my clan broke off from the Comeaux pack it was amicable. We were granted a nice size plot of land on the very outskirts of their land. We worked up enough to purchase another plot off of the neighboring clan as well and had a beautiful sprawling landscape for our people. We were able to move our main house from deep in the mountains and our people as well. We thrived for a long time, and when my father took over the reign of Alpha, things went about as normal. About two years ago, a band of weres asked permission to stay on the edges of our land. My father was always one to help anyone in need and agreed. Soon enough the band of 5 grew to almost 20, and they petitioned to become part of our pack. The dwindling number of female weres within our own pack made the decision to bring a few more into our own numbers made sense. There was only one woman among them at the time, and she seemed to be an Omega.
"The leader of the band, Edward, became a consultant for my father; he had plenty of Beta's but wanted insight of someone who had lived outside of a pack. Edward was able to tell him things that no other were could due to his experience in the human world. My father became close to the man, and in doing so it... lead to his death. My father had always been a sturdy and healthy man, but within three months of Edward becoming his new right hand man, his health started to decline. When my father mysteriously passed, my brother took up the mantle, but as much as I love my brother he was not yet ready to take up the responsibility. He allowed Edward to influence his decisions until our pack didn't see him anymore. Edward became the face of our pack, and we took orders from him. At frist, his orders were small and normal, like a beta would give in his Alpha's steed, but then the requests became more twisted.
"Some of those loyal to my father tried to stand up to him and were either silenced or thrown in a dungeon of Edward's design. Those he could manipulate, he did. He twisted realities in the minds of our young, changing our beliefs and our rules. Soon there was no stopping what was happening. I had been away from the pack for a few months, and during that time Edward took complete control. When I came back I was appalled at what I saw, but I had no support left to do anything at that time. I knew I needed to reach out for help. I bided my time, and tried to help as many women as I could, until help arrived."
"You mean to tell me that this wasn't a hostile take over?"
"No, not as many people believe a hostile takeover to be. Many of my pack have been killed and twisted, so in some ways I believe this to be a hostile takeover. The way that the women were abused is not something that I would wish on my worst enemy. Some kept in cages, others starved to within an inch of their lives. Used as livestock to some cause that was unknown to me. Just because my pack wasn't attacked head on and our buildings burned to the ground does not mean that this wasn't a hostile takeover." Jack looked over the Alpha's and saw compassion in some, but in others there was contempt. "You may not wish to believe that something like this could happen but the truth is there. The reality of the situation has not hit you, but it will."
"How can we just take the word of you that this is how it happened? What if you are just making excuses for the mistreatment of your pack by your fool hearted brother?" One Alpha down the line yelled out.
"I can answer that." Petra's voice came from nowhere and everywhere. The hair on the back of each Alpha's neck was standing on end. "Jacques Fontenot has not lied to you this day. He comes bearing the truth and you crush his words beneath your boots. You have been brought here to discuss the terrible events that have befallen a group of women. Not just humans that have been pulled off of the streets, and out of their lives, to be dumped in a hell of a life that they had no knowledge of, but were women as well. Our own women were being mistreated, and you sit here and bicker back and forth betwixt each other about nothing. Have you grown so comfortable in your own position that you have become blind to the rest of the world and it's predicament? " Slowly her figure emerged from the shadows in the back of the room.
Dressed in her cloak, she looked a menace. Power radiated from each word she spoke, and in that moment, Blake, Leon, and Jack were all happy to know that this powerful woman had their back. "Laws were created and enacted to protect not only ourselves as weres but also the others that live around us. The council still keeps those rules and all their records. If the Alpha's of this land cannot come together as a people and re-enact the power of the council to aid it's people than perhaps they should not be Alpha's any longer. The three men before you, Alpha Comeaux, Alpha Halley, and Alpha Fontenot have spoken truth. They have come to you asking you to help the women battered by this band of miscreants and you dismiss all their concerns as if they are nothing. Those of you that do are not fit to lead your people."
"Who are you to tell me how to be a proper Alpha? You are no Alpha, and you are a woman! How dare you talk to your superior in such a manner!" The Alpha who had been bursting out the entire session rose from his chair and Leon could get a good look at him. Igor Elkin, his line had come to the America's at the turn of the century and set up shop in Canada. They have long been quarrelsome with the other packs.
"Who are you Igor Elkin, son of Romanov Elkin, to tell me where my place is? Where is your place? You were banished from your homeland for the mistreatment of women after the rules and regulations were set in place. You came to a land where the same rules were enacted yet you still go against the rules and codes we practice here. I was content to sit in the back of the room and listen to you all talk this over, but you have disregarded everything that has been said. I had my doubts about the truth behind what was going on here until I did some research. Your countryman is behind this Elkin. What say you to that?" Her voice never seemed to raise above a quiet whisper, but could be felt as if they were shouted.