Sat. Feb 10th, 2024

d..γ€οΌŒ.. #MY_BLACK_KNIGHT d..γ€οΌŒ..

Happen 21

As Produced By SheriffSquinty

Theme: Taking Chances

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The next several days were absolutely miserable.

Strangely enough, my misery wasn’t solely due to the violent images of Riley’s

death assaulting my mind every time I closed my eyes. While this was definitely an issue, the main cause of my agitation was Gabriel himself.

 

My stubborn, antisocial, over-protective Mate kept me locked in his house with no means of escape. He refused to let me leave for any reason, even during the day,

and he kept two of his wolves constantly on guard at the front door with the Alpha Command not to let me leave. This was worsened by the fact that Gabriel was

hardly athis own home during the day.

I was going stir-crazy, and my mood had steadily worsened as the days passed by. The first few days after Riley’s funeral, I knew Gabriel and the others were trying to work out the logistics of defense against the vampires, as well as trying to get

things settled, so I tried to be patient. I knew they had to organize patrols at all hours of the day. But after that, my patience began to wear thin.

I contacted my family a few times to talk with them (Shifting in the middle of my bedroom so it was easier to speak to them across the great distance, which I was

sure looked comical), and I told them there’d been another attack on Gabriel’s pack,

but I did not supply them with the details. They would go out of their minds with worry. I also conveniently did not tell them that I was basically a prisoner in

Gabriel’s house.

I also read a couple of books to pass the time, but eventually my thoughts would always wander to Gabriel and I’d get distracted.

The one bright light of the miserable experience of being kept inside was the

woman who cooked for Gabriel, Evelyn. She showed up every evening to cook

dinner forme (and leave the leftovers for Gabriel, as he didn’t get home until the

middle of the night.) Gabriel had given her a few days off when I first came back to the pack with him, but clearly he realized that the amount of food was getting

scarce, or perhaps he was worried I would start talking to the walls because I was so lonely, so every evening she showed up to cook dinner. She was wonderful at it. A tall woman in her mid-60s, Evelyn was one of the only wolves in the pack that

treated me kindly. As the days passed after the funeral, I got to know more about her and about the Black Mountains Pack.

The fifth day after Riley’s funeral, I tried to ask her more about Gabriel and his past. For the first time since I’d met her, she looked acutely uncomfortable at the questions and gave very evasive answers, so I didn’t press. I didn’t want to anger her and lose one of my only friends in the pack.

My determination and optimism about retrieving much-needed answers from

Gabriel was beginning to fade. He was very rarely alone in the house, and the few timeshe was, I got the sense that he was avoiding me. We had very short

conversations when we did speak. He knew I was determined to find out what

secretshe kept and he was dead-set on hiding them from me as long as possible.

 

My Wolf was almost as agitated as I; while our Mating bond was strengthening

because of our proximity with Gabriel, it was not the natural order of things to

resist the pull for so long. Most wolves consummated the bond as soon as possible. Our behavior was unnatural.

 

Any patience I would normally have had was nearly gone. I could scarcely sleep at night because of the horrible recent memories and the lack of rest was beginning to take its toll. Gabriel had held several meetings downstairs, but I dared not intrude because it would risk a lot of negative attention from his pack. Besides, most of the meetings pertained to patrol strategies and the like. Clearly, most of Gabriel’s

warriors already knew about the existence of vampires so were not surprised about the many precautions they were taking. I could not help but wonder why I had

been kept in the dark in my pack for so long, especially considering my parents and Alpha Brett had seemed to know about the vampires, too.

I had overheard one thing when I was grabbing a granola bar from the kitchen

while Gabriel was conducting a small meeting in the living room. While vampires could travel fast, Gabriel had said there was noway they could have made it from the nearest town in time to strike that soon after dark; this meant that either one or many of them had a hideout nearby in a cave or some other shelter. The thought

was not pleasant. So far, the searches had found nothing.

Although I did not admit it out loud, Gabriel’s behavior hurt. The rare times when he was around the house, his eyes would find mine briefly before flickering away with an unreadable expression, he often brushed by me with only a short word or two in explanation of where he was going, and the few conversations we did have were short and awkward. I was always asleep before he came back at night and

woke up after he left in the morning. He was working himself to death but not

seeking my comfort or companionship in anyway, and intentionally avoiding any sort of confrontation with me. Everytime it happened I felt myself getting closer and closer to a breakdown.

A week after Riley’s funeral, I had gotten up super early to catch him and finally confronted him about it while he was halfway out the door at 5 in the morning. I had told him that I was suffocating, and asked if he’d atleast let me go outside to train. I must have looked completely insane, or some part of Gabriel knew how poorly he was treating me, because he conceded.

After that, Gabriel instructed Eli or one of the other “babysitters” to accompany me to the training field in the afternoon. They let me train for a couple hours with the

 

other wolves each day. I was not allowed to patrol, but atleast I got to demonstrate my agility and fighting skills.

It was still immensely uncomfortable with the way the others treated me. And

Gabriel did not once observe my training. Plus, although I was keeping up with his packmates, two hours a day was not nearly enough time forme to stretch my legs. If he wasn’t going to change his mind about keeping me locked up, I would take

matters into my own hands.

So on the twelfth day after Riley’s funeral, I decided I’d had enough. I had to get

out of the house no matter what it took. I had begrudgingly followed Gabriel’s

orders so far but at this point I did not care about disobeying him. It had been a

week and a half since the funeral, two since I first arrived, and we’d made no

progress! He couldn’t treat me like an insignificant speck of dirt and expect to get away with it. To my surprise, my Wolf actually agreed with me. She wanted to run free for a little while, work the agitation out of her limbs.

As soon as Gabriel left for another search, I put my plan in motion. I walked quietly down to the foyer, glancing outside to see that the two ‘guards’ were loitering about in front, looking irritable..They likely thought that guarding

Gabriel’s Mate was a waste of time but they dare not disobey the Alpha. I couldn’t

blame them; I, too disagreed with his decision to keep me cooped up like a

prisoner. I knew he was trying to protect mein some way but it was ridiculous. I was not some pet to be caged up.

And despite the fact that he was trying to protect me, it was still childish of him to avoid me the very few hours he was around.

Assuring myself that they weren’t really paying attention, I hurried back upstairs. I slowly walked down the hallway to the second floor, opening doors as I went and peering out of the windows in the rooms. What I really needed was a window near a large, sturdy tree. Shimmying down a tree wouldn’t be the world’s most graceful exit but I needed some fresh air before I went crazy.

 

*

Hall Of Supernatural Stories

*

I finally got lucky when I opened the door to the bathroom nearest to my bedroom. There was a decent-sized window that I could likely fit through, and it was along the back side of the house so the guards would be less likely to hearme. I doubted

 

they were alert enough to catch the subtle noise I would make when climbing down the tree.

Gripping the ledge of the bottom half of the window, I quickly unlocked the latch and then heaved the window up in one fluid motion. It was a relief to see that there was a thick branch pretty close to the window. I clambered out and onto the

branch; having climbed a lot during my childhood years, it wasn’t overly difficult. I had werewolf grace to thank for that.

Trying to be as quiet as possible, I slowly crawled along the branch, dropping to a lower branch once one was near enough. I repeated this action with two more

branches, eyeing the ground below me with some caution. I wasn’t too farup now, and my landing shouldn’t make too much noise. I swung myself below the branch and then released it, landing on my feet in the thick grass behind Gabriel’s house with a soft thud. I couldn’t waste time now. I quickly took off towards the nearest copse of trees, stripping my clothes off and tying them around my ankle in record time.

I easily welcomed the contortion and burning sensation that the Shift brought. It

had been too long since I had last Shifted; in fact, I hadn’t been in this form since I

had started living with the Black Mountains pack. My Wolf yipped with excitement, stretching her long, powerful legs.

Where should we go? She asked me, tone lighter than I had heard it in days.

Let’s just run for an hour or so, not so far that we can’t easily make it back hours before sunset. I was hoping to talk to our pack. The thought of opening my mind and hearing others’ voices was a relief; I had been quite lonely the last few days.

I took off without further ado, My Wolf and I enjoying the breeze whispering

through our fur and the thick grass of the forest under our paws. The trees provided shelter from the sun for a few moments before the woods ended, giving way to

rockier, hilly ground that the Black Mountains Pack was known for. I slowed my

pace, treading cautiously around the sharper rocks that would hurt my feet. I began to climb onto large rocks and leap from boulder to boulder, relishing the feel of my

Wolf’s powerful muscles in this form. My human body was just so frail in comparison.

We ran like that for just over an hour, having no issue traversing the rougher

territory, although some part of me missed the dense forests from closer to home. After a while I instructed my Wolf to slow down and she did so, although

regretfully. I waited until we found a large stretch of relatively flat ground

overgrown with thick grass before stopping completely. We would probably be here for a while.

 

I turned in a circle, stretching my large form out in the warm sunlight. Holding my breath in anticipation, I lowered my mental barriers and stretched tendrils of

thought out to my mother and father, leaving the others for later.

Skylar! Why haven’t we heard from you in days?

As expected, my father was angry. It had been three or four days since I’d last spoken with them.

Skylar! So glad to hear your voice, sweetie! My mother, after greeting me, attempted to calm him. Typical responses from both of them.

Sorry, Dad, I tried to make my tone as apologetic as possible. Before he could

lecture me I gave a brief explanation of my training during the past couple of days, and how I was holding my own. I didn’t include the way Gabriel was treating me; that would only serve to infuriate my father. Once more, I didn’t mention the fact that I was cooped up pretty much all day.

At this point, I had contacted Alpha Brett to join our mental discussion. I had a question for him, as there was something still bothering me.

I’ve been wanting to know. Why did nobody tell me about the vampires before all of this? I always thought they were a myth!

 

There was silence for a few seconds before my father spoke.

I’ve only met one once when I was very young. They are rare creatures, rarer than werewolves. I’d hoped you’d never come into contact with one, never have to know they exist.

I advised them not to tell you, Alpha Brett continued where my father had left off. Same with many of the other families. That’s why none of the younger generation knows.

I remained quiet for a moment, not sure how I felt about them making this decision forme. Maybe if I’d had some idea of what waited out there….

Now, of course, I realize that it would have been easier for you had you known, Alpha Brett admitted, after several seconds of silence.

Skylar, honey, don’t blame your father or the Alpha. We argued over it and I thought it best we stay silent. Of course, now I wish we would have said

something. There was a piercing sadness in her tone and I decided to drop it.

After half an hour of catching up, I requested to speak to Maria or Will. I knew that it was likely that neither one of them was in Wolf form at the moment, but I hoped they were missing me enough to want to Shift for a few minutes. I politely asked

Alpha Brett to convey the message then said goodbye to my parents. Talking to too

 

many wolves at once could be near impossible, especially when I was at this distance.

A few minutes later, I felt both of my friends’ presences in my mind. My Wolf

gave a small yip of elation as I realized just how much I had missed them. I had only been able to talk to them once since I left home, and it was over a week ago.

Skylar! Maria said excitedly, and I could sense her excitement even at this

distance. Will began to greet me but his calm voice was drowned out as Maria started grilling me with questions. How are you? Has anything new happened?

How is that Mate of yours? Have you guys…um… she stuttered off into awkwardness and Will seemed tense for some reason.

Calm down, calm down. I’m fine. I’ve started training with the wolves here.

He’s….frustrating. And no. I gave the last answer shortly. I knew that in human form I would have been beet red.

The conversation continued from there, although Maria gave considerably more input than Will. It was odd, how it felt like I hadn’t seen them in months when it had only been a couple of weeks. It was definitely difficult to be away from the pack you were born into. Maybe it would’ve been easier if Gabriel wasn’t so

impossible.

After an hour of conversation, my mental barriers were slowly beginning to rise

again. I had expended a lot of energy talking to all of them for an extended period of time from this distance. Glancing up, I realized it was afternoon and I needed to return to the pack soon. Hopefully Gabriel wasn’t back yet; he’d likely be infuriated that I had passed his guards.

I said goodbye to my best friends, my tone tinged with regret. I could only hope I would see them again soon.

Take care of yourself, Skylar, Will said softly. I smiled mentally, glad to see that somebody cared. Closing off the conversation for good, I stood up and shook my thick silver fur out. It was time to head back to the pack and see what kind of

trouble I was in. With any luck, Gabriel would not be home (it was the norm, after all) and I’d be able to sneak back in.

—-

I really didn’t think this through, I berated myself as I exited the trees behind

Gabriel’s house in human form again. I could hear Gabriel from this distance,

shouting at the guards for letting me slip by. He must have just gotten back. I

couldn’t help but feel a surge of irritation directed at him. If he had paid attention to me in the first place I wouldn’t have resorted to such extreme measures to make

 

myself feel better. Besides, it wasn’t exactly like I was trying to make a grand escape for good.

 

 

*

Hall Of Supernatural Stories

*

Gabriel’s deep yelling abruptly cut off; he must’ve caught my scent. I hurried

around the side of the house, eyes falling upon the exact scene I had constructed in my mind: Gabriel yelling at two downcast guards. One of them flashed me a

murderous stare as I walked up.

Gabriel was facing me, standing stiffly with his arms crossed in front of his chest

and his eyes cold. I felt a spike of pain deep within my chest. He was looking at me as he would any other disobedient member of his pack, whereas I couldn’t help feel admiration everytime I sawhim. I wished for the umpteenth time that he could see me the way a Mate was supposed to.

“You weren’t supposed to leave the house,” he said icily, anger resounding in his tone.

“I didn’t come here to be a prisoner,” I replied shortly, not liking histone. While part of me was intimidated by his Alpha posture, all of my patience had worn thin and I was barely keeping my agitation at bay.

“I can’t constantly keep an eye on you when I’m dealing with everything else.” I gritted my teeth. “I don’t understand why you think you need to babysit me!” I noticed Eli walking up from the corner of my eye and I blushed with

embarrassment. Did Gabriel really have to confront me in front of three others?

“Haven’t you noticed what happens everytime you wander off?” His arms were by his sides now, and he was clenching and unclenching one of his fists in agitation.

Corded veins stood up along his arms, and he was tensed up as if in preparation for an attack.

“I-” I started to defend myself but he cut me off.

“You don’t do as you’re told.”

My eyes narrowed. “Maybe because I-”

“You always get into some sort of trouble. You’re reckless and impulsive.”

Again, calling me reckless. I flushed, this time with anger. I felt emotion rising in my chest. I could not believe he was calling me out like this in front of others.

Talking down tome.

 

“I didn’t leave just now to try to go get into trouble, I just needed to run after being

locked in your house for so long!” I made no attempt to mask my growing frustration.

“Why is it so hard for you to understand that you attract danger?” Gabriel ground out through gritted teeth.

“If I’m such a hazard, maybe you shouldn’t have brought me here!” I snapped, fury evident in my tone.

Gabriel looked away, his jaw clenching, staring off into the distance. Then he spoke so quietly, I barely heard it.

“I wish I didn’t.”

I gasped despite myself, eyes widening. It felt like he’d driven something sharp directly into my chest. For a moment I couldn’t breathe. How could he just say something like that? I felt burning at the corners of my eyes and I knew I was dangerously close to crying. I couldn’t cry here, I couldn’t break down now. I

turned away from him. I had to make it back inside the house, quickly, before emotion took over and I was further humiliated.

I began to walk away without another word, trying to fight the rising pain. I felt,

rather than saw, Gabriel make a move towards me. I turned my head slightly to see him reaching out to try to stop me. I spun around fully then, my Wolf snarling in

the back of my mind. For once, she was angry with her Mate. My angry eyes

fixated on his, fury taking over. How dare he make a move to touch me after what he had just said?

“Don’t you f**king come near me,” I hissed, putting as much venom as I could into every word. Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned, they always said. Well, after being scorned for days and then basically rejected in public, I now knew that to be true. Gabriel recoiled from me, and I thought I saw visible pain flash in his dark

eyes before he turned away.

 

 

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#Tobecontinued…..

 

 

_ _-Agboola-_ _

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