The Luna Trials Chapter 70
“This is not how l imagined it,” Savvy let out a little laugh as Elene tried to open an old chest in her room, which, luckily, wasn’t touched by the recent fire.
The Northern Princess tried key after key to unlock one of her secret treasures. “I figured that it would be best if I didn’t tell anyone of my thoughts until just a few hours were left before the event. After how things went last time, there were no illusions about making any announcements,” she confessed, finally finding the right key and opening the lid.”Ah, here it is!” she gasped in delight as her trembling fingers brushed over the shimmering pale blue fabric. The Princess’ smile faded, and her eyes glistened as a few tears formed in them. She was supposed to be the one to wear this dress on her wedding day. Her mother’s dress that was passed from one Luna of the North to another for generations.
However, this felt right.
It was right.
Because Elene was simply a princess, and Savannah was her Queen now. There was no time to shop for designer gowns, and there wasn’t a more perfect dress for the occasion. Now that Elene looked at it, she knew that this dress belonged to her brother’s Luna. After how Bjorn twisted everything again, they had to prove to the people of the North, who were still torn between two possible kings, that they were the real deal. Kai and Savvy. They were the true King and Queen of the North, and they did not have any competition. They were the ones whom people should follow into the battle and to whose heirs they would one day bow their heads. Claude, Chloe and Kyle were already working, spreading the videos from the flash card that Claude managed to bring back from the white bears. They were already giving a different narrative to the recent events, but a final blow was required.
The idea struck Elene instantly when she heard that monster’s words. Bjorn called her brother a walking corpse who conspired with demons and made a fatal mistake by doing so because now they could prove once and for all who was the main liar and manipulator in this story. Elene remembered how her eyes met with Riannon’s when they watched the video on the tablet. Wasn’t it just perfect? Bjorn has given them a gift they couldn’t have been dreaming of receiving.
Elene knew that the Western Luna somehow was aware of what she was thinking. She hated to admit that, but in the past few days, she grew to understand one thing- she liked Riannon. A part of her still hated herself for liking that woman, but it was hard to deny that she now understood what all the fuss was about. It was impossible not to like her, considering she obviously meant well and always found a good word even for her. So, Elene made the only right decision and chose to leave the past behind.
She had her chance with Gideon. She really did.
When she came to visit Kai during his Alpha training, Gideon was nice to her. He was talking to her, accepting her attention, and it could grow into anything if she were smart about it. Unfortunately, she wasn’t, and she had realised it only recently. When Amarok and the others left to rescue Savannah, Elene got to work.
Lachlan dealt with the warriors, and she got to the information war. She knew that this was one crucial piece they would have to handle cautiously, and they would have to show Bjorn in his true light sooner or later. She was checking their system for any videos from the day Bjorn abducted Savvy, hoping to make a compelling short film about his lies. Then she decided to go further and dig for anything else she could use about him back from the Luna Trials. And that was when she encountered something she did not expect. It was hidden in a separate file, and she stopped breathing when she saw the words “Penelope’s Death”.
They told her that there was no footage of that, but there it was -right before her eyes.
At first, Elene did not want to watch her beloved friend being slaughtered by a monster. But later.. after biting her nails way too many times and pacing around the room, she decided to rip the bandage off. She had to see it. She had to know. “Updated by Jobnib.com” This decision was supposed to help her and fuel her for the current war with their enemies, but she couldn’t even imagine what she would actually see. She wanted to hear Penelope’s last words during her last moments alive, and she heard more than she counted on. What her best friend said about her was an eye-opener, and for a few seconds there, the Northern Princess didn’t know how to react.
The Penelope she saw on the screen was spiteful, arrogant and cruel. It wasn’t her best friend at all. Or was it?
She never doubted anything that Penelope told her, but after hearing what her dear friend really thought about her, how she belittled her and was annoyed at the mere mention of Elene’s name, she started questioning everything. That fateful day when Gideon stopped talking to her once and for all came to her mind as well.
That day Elene and Penelope came to the Lycan practise field and found Gideon and an Alpha she-wolf who was actively flirting with him. It was just some werewolf, and she couldn’t be a real competition for a Princess, but she sure did her best to sedvce the Western Lycan King. She asked Gideon to show her some battle moves, and while he was doing just that, she tried to touch him or showcase her impressive curves, which Elene herself did not possess. The whole thing was annoying, to say the least.
“You’re not going to leave it like this?” Penelope whispered into her ear in her usual innocent tone.
“He has just become the Lycan King” Elene shrugged his shoulders. “Women will always be around him.”
“It’s one thing to be around him and another to be all over him”‘ Penelope played with her shiny black hair, tossing it to the back when she was done. “But he is looking for a Luna now. And you know the qualities of a good Luna. A real Luna should be fierce and domineering. She can’t let some she-wolf touch her man like that. She would put the brat in her place to demonstrate who is the real deal!”
“As a royal, I have to disagree” Elene simply rolled her eyes at that. “We need to know when to act”
“Fine” Penelope giggled, but that giggle seemed cold and… cruel. “Follow the etiquette while that she-wolf arouses his… instincts.”
Elene looked at the girl again. She was already bending right in front of Gideon, and his gaze grazed over her bottom at full display. It was such a basic thing to do, but she couldn’t help and ignore a spark of male interest in his eyes. The girl said something, and he laughed. All while she watched them both from the top of the stairs near the spectators’ seats.
Soon he left, and the werewolf girl turned to give her a sneer. She knew the whole time that the Northern Princess was watching.
“That b’tch!” Penelope hissed. “Seriously, El. You can’t let her get away with it!”
The said girl was next to them in seconds, meeting Elene’s gaze with an ominous glare.
“Enjoyed the show?” she asked arrogantly, making the princess’ blood boil. “l can give you a master class on how to do it, Your Highness! You’ve
been around him for weeks and barely had any results.
Such a pity.” She was clearly mocking her, and Elene raised her chin up high to give her a cold northern stare.
“It’s funny how you think you can teach me anything,” the princess smirked.
“One word of hers and your whole pack would be wiped,’ Penelope interjected, crossing her arms on her ch3st.
“Is that so?” The girl raised her brow. “She doesn’t look so terrifying with those lousy snacks in her hands.”
That was too much, and Penelope’s voice rang in her mind through their link, “Show her now or regret saying nothing and losing to her until your last day!
Elene handed her friend the lunch box with Gideon’s favourite sandwiches she made with her own hands. Making those was her way of showing him how much she cared. Usually, royals did not cook, but in this establishment, all shifters were required to c ater to their own needs as a way of teaching them to be more independent. And Elene grabbed this opportunity.
Someone laughing at her sincere attempt along with Penelope’s whispers made her angry.
“Is this terrifying enough for you?” she asked with an arched brow and pushed the snarky girl lightly. “
Remember that Gideon Stormhold is mine!”
It was supposed to be a light demonstration. Only that she forgot the difference in strength between the royal lycans and simple werewolves. The girl’s eyes widened as she flew down the stairs of the stadium and landed in the dirt at the very bottom.
“What happened?” Gideon came back for some reason at the worst time possible, shocked by the scene before his eyes. He helped the she-wolf to stand up, and she said something to him that Elene couldn’t hear.
A bad feeling rose in the pit of her stomach.
“It was an accident!” The Princess was next to the two of them in seconds and noticed how Gideon clenched his l!ps tightly. As if.. he did not believe her but had to tolerate her. She was-
“l understand” he told her politely and lifted the other girl in his arms. “Don’t worry, Princess Elene. I will take her to the infirmary.”
“I’ll go with you!” she suggested as Penelope gave her the box she was holding back. “l prepared some-“
“No need,” he replied and left without sparing her another glance.
She did not see him talking to that girl anymore, but at the same time, their own conversations were limited to a few brief words required by the royal protocol and nothing more. Kai found her crying once, and she told him about her feelings for the Western King. Her brother got tense but offered her hand in marriage to Gideon nonetheless. However, when a rejection letter came, things between the two kingdoms that were never too friendly only turned for the worse.
There were many other moments with Penelope that she now questioned, and sadly, she realised that she had never had the friend she imagined.
Nevertheless, there was another realisation. Savvy knew all that and never told her during her mourning. She could have used Penelope’s speech to gain points for herself, but she chose to keep this information away so as not to hurt her. Life had peculiar ways of showing her what was really important, and although Pen was her fake friend, she now knew that Savannah was a real one. They would need time to get to know each other better and move on from the Luna Trials, but… there was definitely something good there, something worth exploring.
“Are you sure?” Savannah asked when Elene stretched her hands with her mother’s wedding and coronation ceremony dress. The Lycans always celebrated both events together. “I know what it means to you. I mean, Kai told me-“
“I have never been so sure about anything in my life” Elene nodded with a timid smile, blinking her tears away. “You will look beautiful in this, Savannah, and everyone will recognise it. It’s the Queen’s dress, and now it means that it’s yours.”
She helped Savvy into the dress and pinned it at the back for her, noting that the seamstress would have to make a few urgent adjustments.
Savannah gasped when she saw herself in the mirror. She saw this dress in one of the books she had read during the Luna Trials. They said that each Luna made her own adjustments to it. Initially, she planned to take just a few embellishments from it and add them to the dress of her choice. However, now that she was looking at herself in the mirror, she knew that this dress was the one. There could be no other gown for her in the whole wide world.
Long off-shoulder sleeves and a sculptured corset gave her a regal look, while the pale blue silvery fabric cascaded down to the marble floor, creating a magnificent ball gown. An intricate design of silver sequins and beads was adorning the corset and the skirt, and only when taking a closer look did Savvy realise that the pattern reminded her of the northern mountains and some of the ancient symbols she saw back in the cave and the shrine. It was a masterpiece! A subtle shine emanated from the sequins, making them look like pieces of ice or maybe the crystals from that cave Kai once took her in. It was indeed something a Northern Queen should wear. There was a beautiful North Star brooch at the top of the corset, right in the centre of her ch3st, and Savannah unpinned it, noticing how Elene’s l!ps parted.
“Here” she handed her the brooch. “l want you to have it for when your day comes.”
“Savvy, you don’t have to-” The Princess tried to protest, but it did not work.
“|know l don’t have to, but I want to. It will suit you, Princess of the North,” she smiled and then turned back to the mirror. “Besides, I already have a necklace and a huge shining North Star mark. I think they are statement enough.”
Elene traced her fingers over the cold metal with a smile. It was nice that a part of this dress would still belong to her. Something that was her mother’s would be with her on her big day. If it ever happened, of course. She was about to stop believing in it.
“Oh, there is also the veil!” Elene remembered suddenly and went back to the chest, producing the most gorgeous tulle with silver north stars embroidered all over it.
“It’s gorgeous,” Savvy covered her mouth with her delicate palm and tried not to cry as Elene attached the veil to her hair.
“It’s perfect on you!” the Northern Princess smiled.
“Are you at all nervous? About the whole wedding/coronation thing?”
“No”‘ Savannah did not hesitate with her answer.
How could | be? Kai is the one for me, you know. I love him, and there is not a single bit of doubt in my heart. If anything, l can’t wait to be done with it! The sooner we are married and crowned together, the better.”
Elene smiled at her sister-in-law. It was the perfect response, and she was so happy for them, but a part of her felt a little prickle of pain. Everyone around her was finding their mates and experiencing this huge unconditional love. Everyone but her. Even that white bear traitor Brigit was mated to Aspen and dared to throw this kind of blessing away, but Elene still had no one. It did not seem particularly fair, and she started to get worried that maybe it was her punishment for all her past mistakes? Yes, Penelope was feeding her ideas, but she was the one to follow and act on them. The responsibility was hers. Was she punished for it? Or maybe it was as simple as her mate never existed because she wasn’t worthy in the first place?
“EL” Savannah turned to face her with an understanding smile. “You know, just a few months ago, I was helping Riannon into her coronation dress while my own heart was broken by my first mate. I thought there was no hope for me, and this was it. And then… a couple of months later, I went for the North, thinking that it was the worst thing that could happen to me. I really thought I was sacrificing myself for my people!” She chuckled, and Elene snorted, her eyes watery. “What l am trying to say is life is unpredictable, and you may not know it now, but the experience you had… It was necessary. For something bigger and better. You’ll see.”
“Oh, Savvy,” Elene pulled the other woman into a tight hug, “l always knew I wanted a sister! And finally,
Kai gave me one!”
It was the truth, and for now, it was enough for the Princess of The North.
Savannah thought that some of the northern traditions had to be changed! They couldn’t be serious with all that stuff! Who in their right mind was marrying in the mountains during night-time?
However, she wasn’t going to complain. Not anymore. Not after she lost him and got him back.
“We can still turn and go back home,” Gideon told her as he offered her his hand in the dark cave where only rare crystals were glowing in the darkness. ” Just saying.”
“A bit too late for that, don’t you think?” Savvy giggled, happier than appropriate. In the morning, the war would start, and they would all have to fight. She had no right to be this excited now. None of them had, but dying or losing everyone they cared about made them look at life from a different angle.
“You mean the marks?” Her brother rolled his eyes. “Big deal! l’d whisk you back home in an instant if you give me a signal. So, whenever you are ready, sis.
“I wasn’t talking about the marks, Savvy let out a laugh that echoed through the cave walls, and now he looked at her with an arched brow. “I was talking about your niece or nephew, silly!”
“What did you-” Gideon’s breath hitched, but this was when Zara entered the cave.
“The time has come!” she announced, ignoring her King’s startled face. The aurora has started!”