The Destruction of the Vlkolakbylilgirlsix©
This story is a prequel to the "Wolf's Pet" series. It could stand alone, but I think it would be better to read after "Wolf's Pet."
Although the characters are not speaking English, all dialog will be translated for your reading ease, except for an occasional word or phrase.
I would like to send a huge "thank you" to my new editor, Archangel_M. I hadn't had one previously, but it has been fun working with him, and I hope I don't make him too crazy.
Germany - 1858
Guillame Bertrand opened the door to the building the Council was using as their headquarters. Now that Rudolf Metzger was the head of the Werewolf Council they had moved near his home on Feldberg Mountain in the Black Forest of Germany. The building had been abandoned and boarded up until the Council had taken it over.
As the newest member of the Council, Guillame had felt compelled to follow Rudolf's orders to appear before the Council for an important assignment. Guillame snorted to himself. Important, hmmph. Just an excuse to keep him out of the way. He had the distinct feeling that Metzger had not wanted him as a part of the werewolf governing body. He had only accepted the appointment this past week. No announcement to the packs had even been made yet.
As much as he'd thought it would be exciting to be chosen to join the Council, he now thought that maybe he should have refused. He hadn't been alpha of his pack for long, but when the offer was made his father had counseled him to accept. He had a twin brother who could take over the pack. This was a great honor for the entire pack and for his family - at least that was how his father saw it. Guillame, however, had a feeling it had more to do with politics and bringing the northern Europeans into the fold. There hadn't been a Council member from the north for some time, and there had been grumbling from the packs about forming their own Council if they were to be left out much longer.
He saw the many females splayed over every sofa in the great room as he made his way to the Council Chambers. It reminded him of a human bordello. He didn't think they were anyone's mates, just playthings for the Council and their lackeys. Guillame did his best to ignore the hungry stares from the females. He and his wolf had no interest in playing. He wanted to find out what his task was to be, get it done, and return home to Belgium. He quickly strode through the room, one purpose on his mind.
The females watched while the tall northerner moved towards the Council chambers. He didn't look their way at all. A few licked their lips in anticipation, hoping to catch his eye and his attention. His wavy brown hair was shiny, his eyes the most wondrous blue they had ever seen, and his clothed body was broad and muscular. Maybe he would show interest in one of them on his way out. They knew the new Council member wasn't mated. His wolf should be interested.
Guillame stood before the giant, ornate doors that led into the chambers. Metzger certainly loved his opulence. He took a deep breath and pushed open the doors. He scanned the room and found their esteemed leader fast asleep in his chair as the others wandered aimlessly around the room. Guillame stood in the center of the room and cleared his throat as loudly as possible. It echoed in the enormous room. He looked up at the dome of what was once a great church and wondered what it had been like filled with humans praying to their God. They would have prayed for His help if they had known what creatures lurked outside their town. And now the creatures had moved into their God's house.
Guillame watched as Metzger awoke and waited an appropriate time before speaking. Although fluent in Metzger's native German. he chose to speak his own tongue until requested to do otherwise. He wasn't sure if Metzger even spoke French, but he would find out now. "What is this assignment you have for me Rudolf? And why did you choose to send a message only hours after I had left our last meeting? It caught up to me the day I returned to my pack. You had no idea while I was still here?"
Metzger could see and hear Guillame's annoyance. He smiled to himself. Good, exactly as he had hoped. He took note of the younger male's slight of using French instead of German, and answered in his own native tongue. "Why my dear Guillame, I only learned of the situation needing your attention at that time. I'm sorry it was not to your liking to return so quickly, but there is no one else I can send. This needs to be someone who is not known in the area, and someone unmated. It may be a years-long task, and a mate would be a terrible thing to leave behind for such a long time. I trust you understand this?" He did his best to act sincere while inside he reveled in the Belgian were's unhappiness. If he had to accept him onto the Council, then he would make his tenure as unpleasant as possible.
"Yes, I understand." Guillame answered in German and almost felt guilty about his tirade. Almost. But he had a suspicion that Metzger had done it on purpose just the same. "What is it you need me to do?" At this point he was actually curious. What could it be that would necessitate a Council member to leave for several years?
"Have you heard of the Vlkolak who live in the Tatra Mountains in the Carpathians?" Rudolf waited for Guillame's nod. "There have been reports of strange things happening there, bizarre rituals, even horrors such as human sacrifice. I don't like humans either, but I would never kill one just for the sake of killing. Now whether or not this is true, we don't know. If it is, the Council must act, quickly and decisively. Obviously we cannot just ask the Alpha or any of his pack if this is true. We must have someone on the inside, to watch, listen, and report back. And that is where you come in." Rudolf forced a smile.
Guillame felt his hackles rising. Human sacrifice? Why would a werewolf ever sacrifice a human? It made no sense. "Where did you hear these things? From whom? The whole thing sounds absurd." He looked around at the other Council members, who seemed uneasy about the whole discussion.
"I don't feel it is in anyone's interest to reveal my source for now. It should be sufficient to know that he is very reliable and came by this knowledge by accident. He came to me to ask for guidance. I feel it is the Council's right to investigate. If the Vlkolak's actions bring human scrutiny down upon us, we must intervene before the damage is irreversible."
Guillame watched the nods from the others. Even he had to admit that Rudolf was right. It was up to them to protect their race, from the humans, or in this case, from themselves. "How would I be able to find anything out? They won't just open up to me because I'm new to the Council."
Rudolf sighed loudly, showing his exasperation with his new associate. "Of course not, Guillame. You will have to ingratiate yourself to the Alpha and allow yourself to become one of his pack. You will do this by following my instructions to the letter, do you understand?" Rudolf glowered at the younger male. Council Member or not, Rudolf would give the orders - and Guillame would obey.
The Belgian were watched the older male carefully. There was something he was not saying. "Then give me my instructions so I may be on my way. This all sounds very distasteful, Rudolf, spying on our own kind."
"It is necessary for the safety of all the packs. You will leave tonight. It is eleven hundred kilometers, and you shall travel at night so as not to be seen by any humans. You should look relatively disheveled by the time you arrive. You are not to bring any personal possessions. You will be a fugitive from your pack, driven out by a vengeful brother who did not want you to threaten his position as alpha." Rudolf seemed proud of his plan and at a glance could see Guillame did not look pleased at the deception. "You will leave reports in a preordained location that will be retrieved at set intervals by my omegas."
"And how will you guarantee the Alpha will take me into his pack and not kill me on the spot?" Guillame had a sinking feeling that that was the plan, to have an unsuspecting Alpha carry out Rudolf Metzger's plans to kill him.
"Trust me Guillame, he will not kill you; he will welcome you with open arms. When the time comes, you will understand." And with that, the leader of the European Werewolf Council stood and left the room, smiling at the females waiting outside.
The other Council members seemed a bit confused as to what to do now. They looked at each other, and a few of them looked sadly at Guillame. Did they know something he did not?
Rudolf made his way to his rooms at the top of the tower. He hoped to leave soon; being this close to humans made him uneasy. At least his pack was close, just a few kilometers from here. He needed a good run, maybe a little plaything to keep his mind sharp. He smiled evilly as he thought of the newly arrived little bitch from one of the Italian packs. Her alpha had sent her as tribute to the Council. He so liked this arrangement he'd made with the alphas. They would send him blond-haired, blue-eyed virgins for his use in exchange for certain favors. Since he didn't have a mate of his own, he was free to take advantage of their lovely bodies. Of course once he'd taken their virginity they were of no use to him, but so much more valuable to their next lover. He took great pride in the education he provided to these fresh young she-wolves. And the Council made a wonderful profit when they sold them to the packs in Asia. They so loved light-colored fur and eyes.
As he threw his cape over a chair he heard a sound behind him and slowly turned to face the source. "Oh, you've arrived. I didn't notice you there. I wish you would make your presence known instead of hiding in the shadows." He heard his visitor's sound of annoyance.
"I hardly think you want anyone to know we are meeting. Unless ,of course, you would like me to announce myself when I enter the building." The shrouded figure splayed his arms open, as if making a grand entrance.
"Yes, yes, you are right of course. Secrecy is of the utmost importance. My spy will be leaving this very night. We should have more information soon. I will keep you apprised."
"Then I look forward to your reports. You know how to reach me." The dark figure exited through the window quietly.
The werewolf found himself relaxing as soon as his visitor had gone. His presence always put Rudolf on edge. He'd be glad when his business with him was done. Just how long did his indebtedness last? And why was he so interested in this particular pack? Rudolf was also looking forward to the information his emissary would be sending.
Guillame stood in the room that had been assigned to him and neatly stored his clothing and possessions. He apparently would not have need for them where he was going. He guessed that if his story was that he was on the run he would not need his luxuries in the wild. He stood gazing at himself in the mirror. What was he doing? What was the real purpose behind this charade? And would he live to find the answers? He pushed his hair out of his eyes, let out a long sigh, and shifted.
His wolf would be glad to go for a nice long run. He hated traveling with humans anyway. The last several days taking the train to and from Brussels had been stressful. His wolf looked at himself in the mirror, moving closer to sniff the glass and the figure that also moved closer. Guillame laughed and tried to explain it was just a reflection. His wolf scoffed at him. Of course he knew that already. How silly. It was time to leave. The brown wolf padded his way down the stairs, past the admiring eyes of the females, and out the door into the night. He had a long journey ahead of him. He thought it would take him at least two weeks.
The red she-wolf watched as the cubs rolled in the grass. She loved to watch them play, loved every minute of being with the cubs. She couldn't wait to have one of her own. Of course, she already knew she was destined to have only one cub. But her daughter would always know she was loved, and would have everything that Orsolya could possibly give her. There were good and bad things about knowing one's own future. Her grandmother told her she had a great gift: to only know the good things that were to come to pass.
She was so unlike her sister, Zsálya, who knew only the terrors and tragedies in their futures. They were twins, but could not have been more different. While Orsolya loved to be in the sunshine, Zsálya hid in the shadows. Orsolya wanted to laugh and play, Zsálya wanted only to be left alone to her thoughts. She never shared them with anyone. It was a tortured existence. Their grandmother had known from the moment of their birth; Orsolya was always happy, Zsálya always sullen. There were only a few who knew Zsálya's pain, but they knew what her future would be. None with her so-called gift could withstand it for long.
As she watched the cubs tumble and growl at each other, Orsolya wondered when her mate would find her. She knew it would be soon. It had to be; they were meant to mate at the next full moon, what they called the Ice Moon. She'd heard the American packs called it the Wolf Moon. She liked that name much better. No female from her family line had mated during the Ice Moon in the last century. And it would be tomorrow night. He didn't have much longer. All she knew of him was that he was as large as her father, with brown fur and shockingly blue eyes. She couldn't wait to meet him. She'd dreamt of him on her eighteenth birthday. Her happy memory was saddened by her knowledge that her sister had no such dream. Her mate was not waiting to find her.
Orsolya did not understand why the females of her family had the dreams. She knew the females of other packs did not dream the way they did. They could not see their futures, could not see their mates. Her parents had warned her to never mention it to anyone from another pack. If they met at a gathering, she should never say a word about her visions. She would nod her head and keep quiet. But always in the back of her mind she wondered: why were they so different? Of course, there were other things they were also forbidden to mention. But she imagined someday she would understand why.
The red wolf was so involved in her thoughts of finding her mate she didn't notice the blond male cub wander away from the group. She didn't notice until she heard his painful yelping in the distance. She jumped to her feet and stood still, trying to figure out where the sound was coming from. It seemed to echo all around her. She frantically moved her ears, trying to pinpoint his location. The other cubs began wailing, drawing the attention of the entire pack, who came running from all directions. Orsolya ran at full speed towards the missing cub, hearing his plaintive shrieks.
She reached the edge of the meadow and to her horror saw the cub in the mouth of a giant brown bear on the other side of the river. She didn't know if she could reach him in time. The rest of the pack was still too far away. It was then she saw a streak of brown fur and a large wolf hurtling towards the bear. He hit it full force squarely in the chest, bowling the bear over and dislodging the cub from its mouth.
The cub tumbled across the ground, his blond fur streaked with red blood. His piteous cries could be heard all around the meadow. The bear was stunned for just a moment but shook its head, stood on its hind legs, and roared at the wolf who had interrupted its meal. At its full height it towered over the wolf, as well as outweighing him by ten times. But the wolf never relented. He situated himself between the cub and his attacker, ready to forfeit his own life for the cub if need be. He snarled, saliva dripping from the sharp teeth that filled his mouth.
The bear lunged forward, only to feel those same teeth ripping through the skin of its belly.
The other cubs huddled together in fear and were soon surrounded by the pack's females, hackles up and ready to protect their young from whatever it was out there that had threatened them.
The males rushed towards the sounds. They didn't recognize the snarling wolf in a standoff with the hulking bear. But they did know the red wolf who snuck up from behind and snatched the injured cub by the scruff of his neck, running back across the river to safety. She passed the cub off to one of her father's betas and was about to return to help the stranger when her father stopped her.
"He has it well under control, Orsolya. Let him finish it." The Alpha watched closely as the brown wolf attacked again and again, heedless of the large claws digging into his flesh, driving the bear towards the ravine and away from the other wolves. The bear finally gave up and ran back to its den to nurse its wounds. It would think twice about venturing out of its hibernation to hunt wolves. Ártur noticed that Orsolya never let her eyes leave the stranger. "Is he the one, daughter?" He could feel her elation through their bond. He didn't need her answer.
The brown wolf gasped for breath as he watched the retreating bear. He felt the approach of the wolves from the other side of the river. Had Metzger done this somehow? But how could he have? And would he really have put a cub in danger just to solidify his spy's standing in the pack? He watched carefully as the group came closer. He could see the huge black Alpha leading, his betas at his side and a female close behind.
As soon as he saw the female heGuillame couldn't take his eyes away. She was amazing. She moved with a grace he'd never seen. She was obviously young but her confidence exuded from her in the way she walked with the group of betas. He thought he caught a whiff of something in the air. He quickly looked around him and saw no lilacs, no birch trees. It was her. The scent became stronger as she closed the distance. It made its way into his brain, and he knew he would never lose it now. For whatever reason, this loathsome task had led him to his mate. And he would be forever grateful.
As the stranger on their lands, Guillame shifted first. His muscular chest heaved as he still tried to catch his breath. The deep gashes over his ribs and back were healing quickly. However, the ones across his chest and belly were deep, and had torn through most of the layers of muscle. They would take time.
Orsolya could just barely see from behind the betas. The brown wolf was a magnificent male in both forms. Her wolf longed to run to him now, shift, and let him take her in his arms. But she knew the betas would never allow her to make it that far. For now they would have to wait.
He stood motionless as the group stopped in front of him. His fists opened and closed as he attempted to control his wolf. He wanted to touch her, sniff her, run away from these males with her and mate right now. His jaw clenched with the effort of holding his other half back. He tried to make him understand. But after some three hundred years his wolf didn't want to listen. He had waited patiently to find their mate, and now that he had he did not feel the need to be patient any longer.
The Alpha stood for a moment, watching the male in his human form. He was obviously an alpha. What was he doing here? Orsolya, do not shift and stay where you are. As he gave her the command through their bond, he turned his large head and reinforced it with a stern fatherly look. He waited for her to drop her eyes as a sign of submission. He snorted to himself; one of the few times in her life she had submitted to him at all. He shifted and moved forward until he was close enough to touch the stranger.