A/N: Hi guys. I am the ABSOLUTE worst. I hope this makes up for it a little? Life has just been a little hectic dealing with college and work and what not. Anyways, a few things before I let you all read...
Obviously I didn't think the whole "wolfs bane circle" thing all the way out in my head. I mean, they could just jump over it? Lol, so let's pretend for the sake of the story that it creates some kind of barrier around the house; like a shield of sorts. Plus, those words only come up about a gazillion times in the story anyways.
Uhm, I hope you all enjoy the last little bit of this chapter, because it's definitely a prelude to what you can expect for the next (: I hope you guys enjoy, I know I don't have a right to ask for tons of reviews after my horrible track record for updating, but if you love me and this story, you'll be the better people? I love you guys, and please forgive me (: Enjoy!
Hours into Scott's transformation, I had to force myself to go sit out on the front porch. I tried to stay in the living room as long as I possibly could, but his piercing howls were too much for my ears and ultimately, my pounding head. I felt awful, like I was abandoning him at his worst time, but I reassured myself that Derek was taking good care of him and if, for some reason, help was needed later, I would be of better service without a severe migraine.
Stiles accompanied me outside, plopping down on the top porch step next to me. I bumped his knee with mine and sighed, "I don't know what to do."
He shrugged and stuffed his hands in his pockets, "Just gotta let the full moon pass. There's no quick solution for this one."
Scott's agonized scream cut through the night air and I squeezed my eyes shut. This howl of pain was worse than all the others had been. After his inhuman bark of terror and anger, Scott's human voice cried out in agony and it started to sound like he was sobbing. My fingers wrapped over the porch step and I clenched the wood in my hand tightly until it began to groan in protest.
I shook my head, "I know, we have to help him. I just don't know how!"
I blinked away the beginnings of the tears in my eyes and peeked over at Stiles. He was staring off into the distance, his eyes practically bulging out of his face. His lips were parted, but unmoving and I was almost certain I could see the color drain from his face. I turned to find what'd caught his attention and looked right into the larger, glowing eyes of the Alpha.
I sprung to my feet, grabbing Stiles by his jacket sleeve and pushing him back towards the front door. I crouched down low to the ground on the defense. My stomach was bouncing off the walls of my abdomen, filled to the brim with undiluted hatred and absolute terror. I wanted nothing more in that moment than to tear that animal's furry throat from its body. However, I forced myself to stay in place thinking of Scott and Stiles. Derek had his hands absolutely full trying to keep Scott under control and as much as I loved Stiles, he was only a liability right now. He couldn't protect himself.
An inhuman snarl tore from my throat and the veins under my eyes blackened within seconds. My fingers were outstretched like claws and if it weren't for my supernatural state and the reflexes it granted me, they'd be trembling with disgust.
Two more sets of glowing eyes emerged from the trees and I hissed threateningly. I could swear the Alpha was smirking at me. It set my heart ablaze. His two lap dogs, in their Beta form, started slowly stalking towards the house. I leapt from the porch and landed a couple feet away from our home-made perimeter. The Alpha growled menacingly and snapped his teeth at me, beginning to advance towards the house as well.
"Caroline, get your ass back up here!" Stiles yelled. His voice, surprisingly, didn't waver or falter like it usually did when he was terrified. It was deep and demanding and completely full of fear. A part of me wanted to ease his worry, to slowly back towards the house again, but I couldn't concentrate on him long enough to even consider it. The Alpha, Kyle, and Connor were dead set in front of me and I'd be damned if I let them out of my sight.
I glanced briefly down to the wolf's bane barrier, wondering whether or not this thin circle of herbs was really going to withstand three wolves. However, I noticed a faint glow radiating upward from the wolf's bane until it faded back into the night. It'd been invisible up until now and seemed to be getting stronger as the threats moved closer. I peered back up at the approaching wolves and took in the fact that they hadn't caught my line of vision. How very oblivious of them, not to notice a barricade made of one of the only things they could not touch. No matter.
I grinned evilly and whistled a frequency high enough to pierce their animal ears, "Come on, puppy. Come get me."
Kyle and Connor growled and launched themselves my way, leaping through the air.
Both were immediately thrown backwards, like running head first into a glowing brick wall. They whimpered like injured dogs and glared at me, small sections of their shirts and furry faces burning away, a dreadful odor wafting through the air. They fisted handfuls of dirt as they dug their paws in the earth, and looked to the Alpha for instruction.
The giant wolf snarled at me, ignoring his companions, and lunged forward. He didn't get thrown back on his ass like the puppies, but the barrier definitely prevented his entrance and the scent of burnt hair circulated the air quickly as he scrambled backwards, unable to pass through. He howled up towards the sky and started to pace back and forth around the perimeter; searching for a way in.
From inside the house, I heard a loud crash and Stiles' muttered, "Oh shit."
I tore my gaze away from the wolves for a moment and stared disbelievingly through the front windows. I could hear Stiles banging around in the kitchen, presumably looking for some kind of weapon. Another crash sounded, clearly from the basement, and my eyes widened in panic. I could hear Derek and Scott growling at each other, their fists pounding one another.
A whimpering of pain pulled my gaze back to the threat and I saw the Alpha leaned up against the barrier, trying to push his way through. His shoulder cleared the glow of the wolf's bane shield, but he snarled and pulled back.
It was penetrable. My stomach lurched forward and I tried desperately to formulate some kind of feasible plan. There wasn't a whole lot I could do, especially without Derek's help. I forced out a deep breath and tried to think of anything, even something that could only possible buy me another ten minutes.
A moment later, there was only one thing that kept coming to mind, not that it was such a great idea, but I roared, "Stiles!"
I heard his footsteps pound through the house, "What?"
I kept my eyes steadily on the Alpha. It wouldn't be too much longer until he forced his whole body through the barrier and then we were all screwed.
"Taped underneath the coffee table" was all I told him and a few moments later, I heard the duct tape ripping away from the wood. I heard his movements stop.
"Bring it here, Stiles. Now!"
He raced out the front door and stopped beside me, watching the wolves carefully. He swallowed thickly and placed the gun and extra clip in my hand. Out of the corner of my eyes, I saw him glance at me and I sighed, "Find a way to warn Derek." I turned to look at him fully then, "But however you decide to do it, do not open that door, Stiles."
He nodded his head and left my side in a hurry. I flicked the safety off and cocked the gun, pointing it in the general direction of the animals. I didn't want to focus on only one of them, knowing that the other two, whichever they were, would take their chance when I did. I slipped the extra clip in my pocket and took a deep breath. Thank God for a cop mom and her incessant need to make sure I could handle firearms.
The Alpha seemed to have that wolfy smirk back on his face, as if unbelieving that I actually thought a gun could stop him. I wasn't naïve, I knew it wouldn't run him off, but it would buy me enough time until Stiles could let Derek know that I needed his help.
The wolves stalked forward in unison and I would have rolled my eyes at their seemingly practiced behavior if I wasn't inwardly panicking. Sure I had a gun and the wolf's bane barrier seemed to hold up well enough against the Betas', but that didn't mean that three wolves moving towards you in unison wasn't a little intimidating.
Kyle and Connor stopped in front of the perimeter and eyed it warily, but the Alpha kept his gaze directly on me as he inched closer, pushing his nose through the glow. He moved closer, slowly, until almost his entire head was through. I looked down the sight of my gun, aimed right between his unearthly eyes. I saw his lips curl in pain and knew he wouldn't be able to push his whole body through; not yet, at least.
He pulled back quickly and snarled again, shaking his monstrous head to rid himself of the burning sensation. He could only try so many times to force his way through before he came up with a plan.
The Alpha glanced at his followers and they all seemed to be having a silent conversation. My stomach ricocheted at the sight. He already had a plan.
Kyle and Connor crouched low to the ground, their faces angled upward. The muscles in their arms and legs coiled before they sprung up in the air, their claws digging into the barrier, trying to climb up. My eyes shot to the sky and picked out the discrepancy in our protection. The glow only extended so far up before it faded completely into the night air. There was an opening and if they could climb the remaining feet, I was dead; we were all dead. Luckily, the Betas' couldn't hold contact with the barrier very long. They ripped their hands away from the translucent wall and fell back to the earth, landing unceremoniously in a tangled mess.
The Alpha growled at them and snapped his head back to me. He bent low to the ground, his sights set on the top of the wall; his goal. He dipped low before launching his body towards the barrier. His claws sank into the glow, gripping tightly and he climbed frantically to the top, trying to make it over before the burning became unbearable.
I stepped back and aimed the gun at the spot where he'd come over the shield. His head barely peered over the top when I fired, a bullet ripping into one of his ears. He yelped and rocked backwards, but otherwise held onto the barrier.
He bared his teeth at me and tried to pull himself up and over again. I waited until more of him was above the glow before firing again, a series of shots aimed for his chest. The Alpha jerked to the side and the bullets imbedded themselves in his shoulder. He barked and fell backwards, his paws still gripping the wall as he slid downwards. It wouldn't be long now before they all made it over.
The Alpha and his pack paced back and forth. All of their eyes were flashing with rage and anticipation, probably imagining my death. And it was right after that thought, that the Alpha revealed a deadly glint in his eyes. The inhuman smirk played across his face and he barked loudly, quick and short. It tore through my ears, louder than a normal bark, but it was bearable.
At least, it was bearable until all three of them started to do it. Short, rapid bursts of deafening howls ripped through the air around me. The sound bounced off the walls of my ears, piercing my brain. I tried to withstand it, tried to look like it wasn't melting the inside of my head. But I couldn't do it. The gun slipped from my hand and I pressed my palms against my ears, desperately trying to block out the sound.
The barks and howls came again and again, disabling me further. I squeezed my eyes shut and fell to my knees, all the while pressing harder and harder against my head, wishing I'd go deaf. My skin tingled and it felt like every stable thing inside of me was crumbling. It felt like death. I writhed on the ground, trying to think of some way to unhear the noises they were making, but the pain crashed down around me in waves of agony. My back arched and I wailed.
Slowly, or maybe all at once, the barking came to a halt. The ringing in my ears after they'd stopped was still torture, but it was tolerable. I stood up, dazed and off kilter, trying to grasp the gun in my hands. My vision was blurry and making me even more dizzy. My fingers grazed over the cold metal and I tried to wrap my hand around it when a strong grasp enclosed my biceps. My stomach dropped to the soles of my feet and I sucked in a breath.
They'd gotten over.
I kicked and punched and lashed out at whichever one of them had gotten their claws on me and screamed with every ounce of breath left in me, "DEREK!"
I only did it to try and warn him, to let him know that as soon as they were done with me, they'd be coming for him and Scott. I hoped it was enough time for him to realize what was going on; he needed to get himself and Scott, and hopefully Stiles, away from this disaster as quickly as he could. The full moon wouldn't last too much longer; he could keep them safe for a while, right?
I tore at my captor and screamed louder, trying to prolong my life. Two dark hands with razor sharp nails encircled my wrists, rendering me useless. I thrashed and kicked and reared back, all to no avail.
Only when those hands, still holding my wrists, wrapped their arms around me in a bone crushing grasp, but nonthreatening hold, did I stop flailing around. A pair of lips pressed to the space just below my ear and spoke urgently, "Relax, Caroline. I've got you."
Derek loosened his grip, but held me close, examining me with icy blue eyes. I took deep breaths and tried to calm down. My vision cleared noticeably and my balance returned quickly. I peered up at Derek in his Beta form, looking dangerous and menacing, but for the life of me, so very sexy with that worried, angry look in his eyes. I breathed deeply, pushed my back into his chest and reveled in the safety he provided. I felt better almost instantly, though still a little nauseous.
Derek ushered me up quickly, one hand on my waist and one grasped tightly in my own. I squeezed his hand for comfort and breathed a sigh of relief. My stomach began to settle slightly and I started to feel all my strength return to me. Derek and I both glanced over at the Alpha and his puppies.
I peeked back at him, "Scott?"
He took a deep breath and spoke in a heavier voice, almost like the words took effort in this state of being, "Passed out in the basement."
"What do we do about them? They can climb over the barrier, Derek. They almost did."
"Full moon won't last much longer. We only have to hold them off until then."
I stooped to pick up my gun and clutched it in my free hand. I didn't want to let go of Derek. I knew we'd have to separate to keep the dogs at bay and showing affection towards one another was only giving the Alpha ammunition against both of us, but this night was taking its toll on me and I needed his presence, his stability, him.
Footsteps pounded down the porch steps and I turned to see Stiles come to a standstill beside me. He kept his eyes on the Alpha, not even bothering to look at me while he spoke.
"What do we do?" He asked.
I glanced at Derek and he nodded his head towards the house and then looked pointedly up at the sky. I turned back to Stiles and told him, "Scott's passed out in the basement. Put some clean clothes down beside him, but try not to wake him. We've don't have much longer until the full moon is gone."
He nodded and kissed my cheek quickly, "Be careful."
I smiled as best I could, "Of course."
He took off towards the house and I turned to Derek. His eyes stayed fixated on the Alpha. Kyle and Connor seemed to be growing restless and were trying to climb the shield again. They crouched low and lunged, trying to get as far up as possible before having to really grab on.
I let go of Derek's hand and brushed against his back while moving to go stand in front of the Betas'. I checked the clip for bullets and shoved it back in the gun, aiming it towards Kyle and Connor. I noticed suddenly that the part of the wall that faded into the night was lower than it'd been before. Our protection was fading and we were running out of time.
The Betas' reached the top of the wall the same time that the Alpha leapt. My eyes widened and I watched as Kyle and Connor tossed themselves over. The Alpha landed half over the wall at the same time. I shifted aim away from the Beta's and fired at the Alpha. I figured Derek and I had a better chance dealing with two kid wolves than the one responsible for creating all the others in this town.
The large wolf yelped in pain and tumbled back to the ground, behind the barrier. Unfortunately, Kyle and Connor had made it over with minimal damage. Derek didn't give them time to recuperate. He flew at them, tearing and biting and ripping them to shreds. He kept them alive, but worse for the wear.
I watched the Alpha carefully. He was becoming more agitated and frustrated. His pack was down and he was stuck on the other side of our perimeter. I reloaded my gun and kept my finger on the trigger.
But before I had a chance to unload on our enemy, the full moon started its descent from the sky. It was the tiniest movement and probably unrecognizable to human eyes, but for the rest of us supernatural, it meant victory, however temporary. Scott had completed the transformation, his pups were changing back to their human state slowly, and Derek was still only too eager to drag out this particular fight. The Alpha was outnumbered and out of time.
One last promising howl seared through my brain before he turned and bounded back through the forest. I hissed in his direction and rubbed my temples methodically. I'd need a whole bottle of Ibuprofen to keep the headaches away.
Derek cleared his throat and I glanced over at him. He looked human again and had a questioning gleam in his eyes. "Are you okay?"
I nodded, "I'll be fine."
Derek nodded and grabbed Kyle and Connor by the back of their necks, dragging them towards the front door. I sped ahead of him and left the front door open before I pulled the basement door open as well. Scott was lying at the bottom of the staircase, breathing heavily and trying to push himself off the floor.
I leapt down the staircase and wrapped my hands around his shoulders. He jumped and looked up at me, but relaxed when he realized I wasn't here to attack. He leaned into me and I helped him up slowly.
"I need a three day nap." He rasped.
I laughed, "Fine with me. Come on, I'll help get you into bed."
"Caroline, you're gorgeous, but Derek would murder me."
I narrowed my eyes, "I can leave you down here if you'd like."
"No, take me upstairs, please."
We'd just made it to the basement door when Derek appeared before us and tossed an unconscious Kyle and Connor down behind us. He looked Scott over and slapped his cheek playfully, smirking, "Not bad."
"Be nice." I chided and helped Scott into the room he was staying in. I helped get him situated in bed and placed several bottles of water and some pain relievers on the nightstand. He was almost unconscious by the time I left the room. Stiles was passed out on the couch, having finally spent up all his energy for the night.
Derek and I headed upstairs and on the way up, he admitted, "I'm not sure what to do next. We can't predict the Alpha's next move; not accurately anyways."
I sighed, "I suppose it's time you all met my friend Bonnie."