The drive back to my old pack was only five hours. While I remembered Tyler finding his mate like it was yesterday, the run to my grandma’s house had been hazy.
“You ran five hours?” I asked Maya, somewhat shocked.
“We needed to get the hell out of there.” She grumbled, “And now were going right back.”
“We don’t have a choice.” I sighed, “But were both different now.”
“You’re damn right we are.” Maya growled smugly.
We pulled up to the edge of the packs territory, escorted to the side of the road by some of the wolves who were guarding the perimeter. I was surprised that I didn’t recognize any of these wolves.
They emerged from the forest wearing nothing but low hanging sweat pants. I tried to keep my gaze to myself, but I’m still half human.
“What is your business coming here?” One of the men spoke up. His build was huge, and he had a long scar running down his bicep.
“Were here to visit family. My brother’s the Beta.” I replied, looking at each of their faces. There really wasn’t anyone here that I recognized. Had the pack grown in the time that I was gone?
“Beta Drake?” The man had a confused look on his face.
“What? No, Beta Sean.” I scowled. Since when did Tyler have a Beta named Drake? I wondered if everything was okay with Sean’s position in the pack. You typically have to do something really bad to lose your position like that.
A look of understanding crossed the man’s face, and he glanced at the other men with him.
“Go on through.” He nodded once, and my grandma wasted no time in pulling away.
“Well, that sure was strange.” My grandma looked at me and frowned, I’m sure she was thinking the same thing as me.
“It definitely was.” I frowned.
We drove through the center of town and I was shocked to see a ton of new faces. Something had definitely happened while I was gone.
I vaguely remembered Tyler telling me about another pack that needed help. Maybe they finally joined forces.
We pulled into the driveway of my old house. The white paint was now faded. It looked like I had been gone for much longer than a year. The flowers that were once outside were now wilted and dead. My mom was the one to take care of the flowers out front. How long has she been dead for?
I hesitated at the door, wondering if I should knock or just walk in. My train of thought was interrupted as my grandma opened the door and walked into the house.
A shocked Sean was sitting on the couch, my dad sitting off to the side in his recliner.
“Lola?” My dad exclaimed, looking more surprised than ever.
My dad and Sean looked me up and down, noticing the changes I had been through in the past year. My raven colored hair had grown longer than ever, now reaching my waist. My silver eyes were much brighter, teeming with life. My skin was clear and porcelain-like, and I had lost some of the baby fat I had carried with me. The fat quickly was replaced with muscle.
“Hi dad.” I smiled at him, walking into his arms. I breathed in his scent of cologne and toba**o.
“I missed you, kid.” My dad grumbled, ruffling my hair before he turned to his mom.
His face lit up like a little kid, “It’s good to see you, Ma.” He pulled her in for a hug and held on for dear life.
“Now tell me what the hell is going on.” I scowled at Sean, who was simply watching their exchange with dad.
Dad sighed and sat back down on his recliner, looking tired and somewhat beaten down.
“Well go on. I’m not going to break if you talk about it.” He grumbled at Sean. My grandma stood off to the side, her hand on her son’s shoulder.
“Tyler f**ked up.” Sean huffed.
I rolled my eyes, “Wow, so surprised. Keep going.”
“I don’t know if he told you, but Tyler was supposed to help another pack. They pissed off the Alpha of the Crescent pack and needed backup in case they went to war.” Sean started, and I was already becoming bored. Tyler’s mistakes didn’t surprise me. After finally leaving home, I was able to see what a complete moron he was.
“Okay, and?” I drug my words out, letting him know I didn’t care about any of the small details.
“Well, Tyler refused to help them. Then, Tyler kept talking sh*t on the Crescent pack. He pissed off their Alpha, pissed him off real bad.” Sean shook his head as if he were trying to get rid of a bad memory.
“He didn’t.” I sighed, shaking my head. I know Tyler’s inflated ego was going to bite him in the ass. His father was a half-assed Alpha and he was turning out to be the same.
“They came here, Lola. They declared war on us.” Sean frowned, glancing at Dad.
I couldn’t help but feel confused. Sure, there were a lot of new faces but everything seemed the same. There was no way Tyler defeated the Alpha of the Crescent pack.
“What happened?” I frowned, looking between Sean and my Dad’s grim faces.
“I’ll tell you what happened,” My dad spat angrily. “Not a single f**king pack would help Tyler. Tyler made us all fight. Every man and woman had to fight. Your mom died fighting. I couldn’t get to her in time.” My dad’s voice broke off with a mournful sigh.
“How- How could he do that.” I said the words more to myself. I knew Tyler was bad, but this was worse than I could imagine. Then again, they hadn’t finished the story.
“And you know what the worst part of all of this is? Tyler f**king ran. Grabbed his bitch and escaped while the rest of us were fighting for our lives.” My Dad spat, now he was shaking with anger.
My grandma gasped, and they gave us a few moments to process what Dad had said. Abandoning your pack was something no Alpha had ever done. Being an Alpha wasn’t a job, it was something embedded deep inside of you. An Alpha would sooner be tortured and die with their pack than to leave everyone behind. It went against everything we know as werewolves.
“Dad calm down. If he ever comes back Alpha will kill him.” Sean’s face turned grim again.
“Alpha? Alpha who?” I questioned.
“Once we realized Tyler had left us all to die, we did the only thing we could. We surrendered.” Sean frowned.
“We have a new Alpha now. Alpha Asher. We’re part of the Crescent Pack.” Sean grumbled, obviously not enjoying the situation. I wondered what that would mean for his position as Beta.
“At least Alpha Asher would never leave his pack behind.” Dad spat, “He may be ruthless and cruel, but he’d sooner die than abandon his people.”
After the long and painful conversation, they gave me and my grandma time to settle in. I nearly cried when I saw my room was exactly how I had left it. I ripped the pictures of Tyler and I down with a furious growl.
“Better that girl be his mate than us. We’d never abandon our pack like that.” Maya spat.
“We kind of did abandon our pack.” I replied to her with a frown.
“That’s different, Lola. We’re not Luna, we’re not Beta’s or anything. We had no obligation to this pack. Especially after Tyler.” Maya growled, but her words made sense. She was right though, if we were Luna, we would have died along with our friends and family.
After settling in, Grandma and I went back downstairs. Grandma insisted on making dinner even though my Dad grumbled in disagreement. I knew he was happy to see his mom though. He needed his family after losing Mom. She may have not been his mate, but he’d been with her for twenty years.
As we ate dinner, I nearly jumped off my seat hearing the mind-link click in my head. The mind-link hadn’t worked since I decided to leave the pack. A deep, husky voice ran through my head. I practically shivered as it swirled in my ear, around my head, and out the other.
“Report to training at the Pack House, 10 a.m. Do not be late. I look forward to meeting you.” A male’s husky voice rolled around in my head. Rough and commanding.
“Was- Was that Alpha Asher?” I found myself speaking out loud. Dad, Sean and Grandma gave me looks of confusion.
“What, Lola?” My Dad frowned, uneaten spaghetti hung from his fork.
“Um, a guy told me to report for training tomorrow?” I sounded unsure. Was it his Beta?
“That was Alpha Asher.” Sean nodded, his l!ps pressed in a thin line.
My Dad nodded, “He likes doing things himself. He makes everyone train.”
I scowled at the two of them. I didn’t like being forced into doing anything.
“Don’t worry, Lola. If you’re no good he won’t make you fight. He just likes to see what everyone is capable of.” Sean told me, his frown permanently etched onto his face.
“I can fight just fine.” I snapped at him. I no longer wanted to be treated like some dainty little girl. I may be small, but I can handle my own.
“Since when?” Finally a smirk formed on his face, the only other expression I had seen on his face was a frown.
I glared at him, “Since I left this pack. I haven’t been sitting on my ass for an entire year.”
“I’ll be there tomorrow for training too. We’ll see how good you really are little sis.” He smirked at me, only pissing me off further.
Tyler was a big advocate on “men fight better than women”, it was good to know my brother felt the same.
Chris pushed me to the breaking point more times than I could count, I had no doubt that I could handle most of the male wolves here.
I spent the rest of the afternoon with my family. Grandma tried to raise their moods, but they had been sitting in misery for who knows how long.
I followed my grandma outside and helped her straighten out the wilting flowers that crowded the outside of the house. By the time we were finished pulling up the dead flowers and planting new ones, I was exhausted and covered in dirt.
“And you call yourself old.” I huffed at her, taking long gulps of the lemonade she had made for me.
She chuckled at my statement and rolled her eyes, “Years and years of working in my garden dear. Let’s make that a part of your training.” She laughed, and I gave her a frightened look.
“You’re gonna work me to death, Grandma. And I thought Chris was an evil dictator.” I shuddered in fear.
My grandma cackled and shooed me inside. By the time I finally collapsed on my bed, I was knocked out cold without a second thought.