The Luna Trials Chapter 65
Bjorn knew that the moment his healing was done, he would pursue Savvy, overpower her, to try to knock her out and bring her back. The silly girl used her third form, and he knew that she couldn’t control it. Knocking her out would be the one and only chance to bring her back from this. If she stayed in her Royal Lycan form for too long, he would lose her. He couldn’t lose her! She was all he had, and now his head was spinning with ideas of how to get her back. There had to be a way!
Once again, he regretted pushing her too far too fast, but at the same time, he also regretted not marking her at once. If he hadn’t taken pity on her situation and just went with it, she would still be healing and in his full grasp. These were selfish thoughts. The thoughts contradicted each other, and, in all honesty, he didn’t know what he should have done. How he should have handled her, but he knew now that what he chose to do was wrong.
One thing was for sure; he shouldn’t have believed in what was too good to be true. She played on his desire to be accepted and used his one and only weakness.
His wound still hadn’t fully healed, but he heard several loud roars coming from the main square that made him fear for her life.
“Don’t… kill,” his voice gurgled through his ch3st as he clenched his neck. The long cut on his ch3st didn’t bother him much, but the neck wound was still dangerously painful.
Joran followed him with his gaze in silence, and only a few warriors stayed by his side for protection, none of them dared to offer him help, knowing that he’d rather end them than acknowledge this humiliation. He never forgave humiliation.. until now.
Savvy humiliated him more than anyone else in his entire life. Only Castiel’s father could possibly compare to what she did to him tonight. Yet.. he… had already forgiven her. He knew that he’d have to punish her, lock her away, keep her far away from everyone, but he wouldn’t kill her, and he wouldn’t reject her. She could do anything to him, and the result would be the same. He needed her.
A growl escaped him at the realisation.
“She is long gone,” Jor commented, gulping the rest of his wine and throwing away the glass angrily. His l!ps were pressed into a thin white line now, and Bjorn didn’t know what to make out of it all.
“You could have helped!” the White Bear King snapped.
“Not in this case,” the Serpent scowled, turning away as if he was keeping more secrets from him. Secrets, secrets, secrets. Everyone had secrets, and Bjorn had had enough of all this.
He kicked a jug that was on the floor right next to him, and a menacing growl escaped his ch3st as he pushed himself to restore, the acceleration clouding his mind temporarily.
He heard the despair of his men in their mindlink. He felt them dying one by one, knowing that it was Savannah’s doing.
“Just kill the b***h!” One of his warriors growled. “Or she is going to kill us al!”
A wave of panic rippled through him.
Whatever it was, he couldn’t let anyone hurt her. If his men killed her, they were as good as dead.
“Bring her back alive!” He snarled at them in his mind and ran. Ran, ran, ran to where he felt her. Though thoughts of the many punishments he could inflict on her for what she did today were flashing before his eyes, he knew that the main goal was to protect her. In a way, he would always be protecting her. Why couldn’t she see that and accept him? Her first mate was dead, Kai was dead, her whole family was dead. He was all she had, too.
The sight in the square startled him for an instance.
So many bodies… He’d lost so many men!
But that wasn’t important now. All he wanted was to save her, to get her back. He would do everything differently now, he would not underestimate her again.
He raced through the woods in his human form.
That let him use some narrow paths a bear wouldn’t be able to. He ran without thinking twice, using his instincts to reach her.
A great idea suddenly came to his mind. Poison! He could tell people that she was poisoned, and that was why she did all these things today. It wasn’t the most believable version in the world, but it could work if he could scare people enough to support his claim. He would have to lock her in the highest tower and keep her there for a year or two for safety reasons, but.. at least they could still be together.
Finally, her delicious scent reached his nostrils, and he breathed out in relief, knowing that she was alive. The stench of blood let him know that his warriors probably weren’t..
But he could live with that. Losing Savannah would have been unbearable.
However, he soon smelled something else. A familiar scent but with new notes.
Only that couldn’t be.. He was dead. He had to be dead! Bjorn personally pierced his heart with that spear to ensure a situation like this would never happen.
And yet the Northern Lycan King stood before his eyes, holding his mate. Savannah wept in his arms, and then he claimed Bjorn’s mate’s l!ps.
It was worse than when she stabbed him with a dagger, it was worse than when he found out his first mate was sleeping with his father. Why did it hurt so much?
Bjorn had to lean against a tree, his elongated claws digging into the bark as he did his best not to give himself away. Why was life so unfair to him? He did everything he could to survive, he did everything he could to get his mate to accept his mark, he did everything by the book! He was told not to face Kai in battle, and he never did! And he managed to win! The victory was clear; it was his and he had worked for it for so long! His plan was perfect! He had thought about everything! Why! Why did it have to be this way?!
A roar of pain and despair escaped his ch3st against his control, it was the cry of a warrior, the scream of a betrayed lover and a warning to the ones who hurt him.
He saw how Savannah flinched in the Lycan King’s arms, how the man he hated so much moved his mate behind his back, trying to protect her from him. Him!
They must have been joking!
The rage overwhelmed him, and as if he was an impulsive teen, he shifted uncontrollably and charged at his enemy. All the years of restraining himself were now gone. He did everything as he was told, planned everything meticulously, he kept away from Kai because of that prophecy, and this was what he got?!
Bjorn didn’t care anymore. He was going to kill the Lycan King today, once and for all. He would be more clever this time and tear Kai’s body into pieces, then he would burn them and scatter the ashes in different parts of the world just to make sure that he would never ever come back and disturb his happiness again.
Blood. He wanted his blood as payment for all the pain and humiliation.
Savannah screamed when Kai gently pushed her back, and then he was gone in an instant, turning into something completely else. Bjorn’s fierce attack was met by a creature no one had ever seen before. The place where they clashed was covered with frost in mere seconds, making the Princess gasp. She still did not know what was going on, and in all honesty, she did not care how Kai came back. She was genuinely happy to just see him, happy that they had another chance. But now she was asking herself, what did he go through to get back to her? What happened to him? What had been done to him?
Teeth, claws, blood, growls and roars; they hated each other so much that neither of them cared about anything else anymore. They both equally wanted the other dead and were ready to sacrifice almost anything to achieve this.
Bjorn saw what was before him. He new that he didn’t have to fight just a Royal Lycan anymore. The creature that fought against him was so much more than that, but it wasn’t stopping the bear from trying to kill him. The wolf threw him and made him crash against a tree, breaking the ancient pine in half, chips flying in all directions. But the anger and hate were his fuel now, so Bjorn was back on his feet in no time.
He took in the beast before him and noticed how the ice on his back and neck was growing taller by the minute. The white bear charged at him again, knowing that his best chance was a surprise attack. He would aim for the neck and the belly, the parts where he could make a fatal blow. Luckily, regular bears’ jaws were strong enough to make deadly bites. Bjorn, however, was no regular bear He was the White Bear King of the North, a royal in his own right, a bear blessed by a God, invincible, unstoppable and deadly. And he was going to win this.
He was still running when he saw a myriad of ice needles flying in his direction. He did not avert his eyes or cover himself, so the little sharp blades went through his skin and fur. That stopped him as he had to brush them off, get them out of his eyes and nose and other sensitive areas.
But Kai did not plan to wait. Amarok was a legend for a reason, and he fully planned on using his new advantages to destroy the man who had hurt his mate and tried to break them apart. Kai had hatred in his heart, too. Not only was Bjorn responsible for their suffering and separation, for murdering him, for trying to claim Savannah as his own, but he even ruined the sweet moment they had been sharing just now. Savvy did not deserve to have this man coming back for her again and again and again. He did not want her to have to live always looking over her shoulder, thinking if that damn bear would be back. He wanted her to be happy and safe, and for that, he had to kill Bjorn.
The bear got rid of the needles too quickly, but Kai was already there, piercing his side with the ice spikes and escaping before Bjorn could even turn in his direction. The bear let out a menacing roar from the pain, fury, and frustration that echoed through the dark woods and then he lashed out at his rival. His attack was brutal; he wasn’t wasting a second of his time, each move calculated but at the same time filled with agony. A battle of hateful passion and contradictions. However, Amarok manoeuvred easily, escaping e ach time.
Both blessed by the gods, they were equals, but somehow Kai’s technique was better. He was exhausting the bear and using his own anger against him. The Lycan King wanted to pounce on Bjorn and end him quickly, but unlike Bjorn, who was desperate and tried to kill him at all costs, Kai knew that he had to take his time. Savannah was watching and wounded and if he lost, she would have to go through hell again fighting for her life. He needed to get her to a healer, and although this way took longer, it was the one that was going to bring him victory. Bjorn was sloppy, and soon he made a mistake that opened up access to his neck and made him vulnerable. Amarok did not waste his opportunity and sunk his ice-cold canines in, feeling how the warm blood of his enemy filled his mouth and trickled down both their furs. He closed his jaws, and then, remembering everything the damn bear put them through, he ripped his flesh out, causing a mortal wound.
Bjorn did not expect this. The words of the prophecy sounded over and over in his head. Never meet the Lycan King of the North in battle; never fight him with your own hands.
He should have listened.
Bjorn fell to the frost-covered grass, its coolness his only consolation. A pool of blood was forming around him, but all he saw was Amarok shifting back to his human form and running towards his mate. Bjorn’s mate. He could still smell her intoxicating bluebell scent, and although it pained him to see her wrapping her arms around his mortal enemy, a part of him was happy that at least her scent enveloped him in his final moments.
For a moment, his eyes locked with Savannah’s, and hope took over his heart once again. But Kai had already shifted back into a giant wolf and lowered himself so that Savannah could climb on his back, and they could escape, leaving him behind as if he was nothing to her.
If Bjorn could chuckle now, he would. His destiny was cruel, after all. The last thing he would ever see would be his mate riding away on his enemy’s back.
The two Lycans were gone, and Bjorn lay on the ground in his human form now, waiting for when death would come for him. Soon, he heard footsteps somewhere in the distance and hoped that his time had come. However, instead, he scowled when he saw Joran standing over him.
“Go away!” the bear spat blood as he tried to speak.
The deity was the last person he wanted to see now. He wanted to die in peace. He deserved at least that much.
“How can I leave you?” Joran knelt next to him on the cold ground. “I have known you since you were a little boy,” he confessed with a smile. “l saw potential in you, and I believed in you. I have spent years helping you. I placed my bet on you, and I can’t see you lose.
This was unexpected. Bjorn always thought that they had a business relationship and nothing else.
“We only made a few deals,” he recalled and noticed a sad smile curling the Serpent’s l!ps. Unreasonably, he wanted to anger the almighty snake. “You and your butterflies!”
“Dragonflies,” Joran corrected dryly, looking up at the sky as if he was contemplating something. “They are dragonflies.”
“Anyway, l only saw you caring about them,” Bjorn scoffed bitterly in a broken voice. “And not even that was what one would consider caring.”
“Just one of them,” Joran admitted. “The one that went missing after a mission I gave her because of you.”
The White Bear King didn’t care anymore. He could feel life slipping away from him. A minute or two and it would be over.. That Lycan turned out to be deadly for him after all! If it was any other wolf, he wouldn’t have been able to hurt him or if he did manage to wound him, his regeneration would kick in. It wasn’t the case now and the bear could bet this was why Kai left before finishing him off. He knew that, too.
“We have been outplayed,” Joran informed him in a low voice and placed a hand on his ch3st. Something changed immediately, and Bjorn coughed, blood spluttering from his wounds. However, he could feel how his healing was accelerated drastically, and his cells were restoring themselves as if they had gone mad. He did not expect it and his eyes darted to the Serpent, whose l!ps twitched as if he was about to smile.
“I told you l care about you,” he repeated his words to Bjorn. “What happened today was not fair. She was your mate, you were both each other’s second chances.
The two of you could have been happy together, and honestly, in the castle, I couldn’t understand what was wrong with her; why couldn’t she react the way she was supposed to… After what I saw right now… Darius, now I know. And I am so sorry!”
Bjorn’s brows quirked up, “Wh-what are you talking about? What is wrong with Savvy?” He still cared about her and her well-being. Even after everything.
“I probably chose the wrong words,” Joran took his hand away, knowing that the white bear would be restored in minutes on his own now. He had already dragged him away from the other side. “She is that mutt’s mate now,” he corrected himself, “but this is a forced bond. It shouldn’t be there.”
Bjorn’s claws grew out again, and he grasped the soil underneath him in the new fit of raw fury. A forced bond! He knew it! He knew that Savannah was his. She was just mistaken. The d*mn Lycan deceived her!
“How?” he groaned, trying to get up despite of the waves of pain rippling through him.
“My brother,” Joran replied, scowling and gave Bjorn his hand, helping him up.”Fenrir.”
The sound of thunder erupted around them as the name of the Alpha God sounded. Bjorn suspected many things, he knew that he had been dealing with a deity. and for a while, he suspected who the serpent really was.
But it was one thing to suspect, and it was another thing to actually know.
Now this… the whole North worshipped Fenrir.
Almost every shrine in these lands was built in honour of its patron.
“Why would Fenrir do this?” he asked when the first wave of shock subsided. “Why would he take my mate away from me?”
“This is probably my fault,” Joran let out a pained sigh. “We destroyed the old order together, but many things have happened since then. It’s very different now, and I think that Fenrir is against me now. And you, Darius, you mean something to me. That’s why he is using you. He is showing me what he can do, provoking me, knowing that I care about you.”
“He clearly overestimates our relationship,” Bjorn seemed angry. It wasn’t fair that he got in the middle of some divine war. The hatred for the Wolf God was growing in his heart rapidly. He finally knew whom to blame.
“He does not” the Serpent looked around. “Years ago, I chose you, Darius Bjorn, as my champion. I have been looking for one for many years and saw potential in you. When you came back from the foxes without an eye but still alive and still willing to fight, I knew that you had what it takes. I trusted you many times, and I never made it easy for you. I did not want you to like me, I wanted you to be worthy. And I found out that you are worthy quite some time ago. I made the right choice, and I never regretted it, not once! Look how far you’ve come with just a little bit of my help.”
“You’re not seriously thinking that I’m buying any of this,” the white bear did not seem impressed at all. “We only made a few deals, and you treated me like sh*t most of the time.”
“I stayed by your side for years, boy,” Joran insisted, and something changed about his voice. It was now deeper and darker, nothing like the honeyed tone from before. “I did not want to simply give you things. You had to earn them, to deserve them. And when I gave you your invincibility, I already decided that you were my chosen one, my champion, the one who would rule not only the North but the whole Moonrise Kingdom. It has been my dream for centuries to restore what my brother once destroyed, and I have never been this close.”
“In other words, you used me to fulfill your dream, and now I’m paying for it with my mate.” Bjorn closed his eyes, trying to control his breathing, but no matter how he looked at it, Joran was his only way to obtain what he wanted.
“Wasn’t this your dream too? To change the order of things, to unite the kingdoms and rule over them, forgetting about the wolves’ supremacy?” the Serpent taunted. “Not to mention that you got your second chance mate thanks to me. They aren’t given to just anyone, you know. I vouched for you.”
“And look where it got me!” Bjorn let out a harsh laugh. It started like a little sound that rumbled through his ch3st, but in a matter of seconds, he was laughing so hard that tears burned his eye.
Why not laugh? After all, his life was a joke!
“So, you are happy to leave everything as it is, then?”
Joran decided to clear the air between them at once.
This is what you wish for?”
The white bear did not reply, and the deity before him nodded silently.
“You’re tired of fighting,” he sighed. “l understand.
So be it.”
He was about to leave when Bịorn’s laughter turned into a roar filled with so much rage that birds flew away from the nearby trees, trying to save themselves, knowing that the most dangerous predator was near.
The roar soon turned into a call, a battle cry that every single warrior stationed in this part of the North knew that the King was summoning them.
Bjorn was panting when he was done, but when he faced his patron, there was determination rippling
through his veins.
“Tell me one thing,” he chuckled darkly, “what will happen if Kai is killed again?”
“What do you mean?” Joran arched his brow, watching his champion with a newfound amusement.
“If i manage to kill him again and ensure that he wasn’t coming back this time, what will happen with. her?”
Bjorn met the Serpent’s gaze, and the deity understood where he was coming from.
“She is your mate before she is his, Darius,” Joran replied. “If her forced mate is dead, she will be back to being your second-chance mate.”
“Will she feel it this time?” the bear wondered.
“That’s hard to tell now,” Joran rubbed the bridge of his nose. “This is an unusual situation, but l don’t see why she wouldn’t feel it if her current bond with Kai is broken.”
“Great!” Bjorn cleared his throat and then took a deep breath of the cold northern air. “I am tired of fighting, but I will not let anyone take what is mine anymore! Years of staying quiet, of plotting behind the scenes and hiding in the shadows, I am tired of all of this. This time. it’s going to be all or nothing!”
“I like your spirit,” a smirk spread over the Serpent’s face. “And this time, I will help you more than before. You have my word. After all, who says I can have only one champion?”