The beginning of my collaboration with my friend RoyalTee. It was fun to do! And is completed- just waiting on the last few chapters from our beta thug. It's short! Super short! I'm going to post one chapter a week, and even at that you'll be surprised how fast it goes... :D
Thanks to our beta October Skies. You spanked the grammar straight, girl! Thanks!
We disclaim. We own none of the characters. Just the hoops we made them jump through...
The forest was green and blurred as she ran. Tears tracked down her cheeks, blurring the landscape that surrounded her. Rain pounded down around her as she fled deeper in the woods. When she could run no further, her legs giving out, she collapsed in a heap at the base of a tree. Leaning her forehead against it, she clenched her eyes tight. The rain was icy as it washed over her overheated skin.
Her mind was torturing her with the endless repeated loop of the newspaper picture. The engagement announcement. The despicable reminder of the greatest form of betrayal to her heart. The blocked box had read, "The families of Samuel Uley and Emily Young would like to announce their impending nuptials. The date will be announced at a later time." The picture alone was enough to cut her heart out.
She rose to her feet and unleashed the fury that was begging to be purged from within. Her hands pounded at the tree as she punched with everything she had. Her body was shaking- trembling violently with the force of her fury. Her skin rippled and the rain evaporated from her body. Her knuckles were bloody and torn, but still she kept taking her aggression out on the tree.
She screamed, a desperate scream. The cry wrenched from the bottom of her soul. Her guts and heart were splayed wide open, waiting for the scavengers to pick over her remains. Still, she fought on- until the bones in her hand cracked and gave way.
Screaming again, this shriek changed into a cry of anguish as her body rippled and changed. The pain became unbearable as she shimmered and shook, changing into a form she'd never thought possible.
The cry that ripped from lungs this time was inhuman. It was a lonely howl of confusion. It vibrated her entire body.
Suddenly she wasn't alone. Voices were raging inside her head. They swirled and tangled with each other. Running as fast as she could, she tried to distance herself from whatever was happening. She didn't understand. There was nothing in her that had believed this could happen.
Leah! Wait, stop! She finally made sense of one command. She dug deeply and skidded to a stop, turning to face the voices in her head. She'd heard them running behind her and snarled in response.
Who are you? She demanded to know.
We'll get to that, Lee-Lee, this was from the huge black wolf that stood before her.
Shit. You just can't stay away and leave me the fuck alone can you Sam?! What the hell! Why am I a goddamn wolf?!
Well, we don't really understand why you are. So far it's only been manifested in the male carriers. This is unusual. We'll have to talk to the council. This too, was said by Sam while the others remained silent. There were only two with Sam, but she could hear and feel as if there were more somewhere.
This has been an eventful day, Leah. You are not the only new member to join us today.
Sam, can't you just leave me to my thoughts for a minute while I try to work this shit out? Damn it. I can't concentrate with all these voices bouncing around inside.
Leah? Leah, is that you? Where are you? I was worried about you! It was odd, but his thoughts almost had the same tone as his voice inside my head. Like I was literally hearing him speak to me.
I'm with Sam and-?
I'm with Sam and Embry. You're a wolf, too, now, Seth?
Yeah, I guess so.
How did it happen for you?
The voices swirled inside her head as she tried to focus on Seth's mental voice. It was too hard. She couldn't pick it out.
Everyone SHUT the FUCK up! I can't hear when you are all in my head jabbering at the same time! I'm getting a headache. She couldn't help but scream at them.
Really accepting your inner bitch, huh, Leah?
Damn it all to hell. Someone just put me out of my misery. I do NOT want to have to live with Paul Fucking Lahote in my head all the effing time! Leah's thoughts were dripping with disdain as she thought of him.
Please all women want me in their thoughts.
Seth, I'll talk to you about it when we are human again. How do we make that happen again? Leah managed to keep the hatefulness from her thoughts when she "talked" to her brother.
Well, um, we probably want to go somewhere that will have clothing for you before you decide to do that. This came from Embry. She was beginning to get a handle on who was who in this hodge podge of voices. She thought it sounded like he was embarrassed. Well, yeah, I am. See, we don't get to keep our clothes when we phase with them on. They kind of end up in shreds.
Well, if that isn't just the icing on the cake. Now I have to get used to seeing all of you naked and you guys seeing me. Shit. Why did the spirits have to fuck me over? This is not funny!
Oh, c'mon Leah, you know seeing me naked is an added bonus.
Grow the fuck up Paul!
You know your estrogen-filled thoughts don't exactly make this a picnic either Paul thought.
Stop! Leah, Paul, you will both be silent. Sam's alpha command had them both muzzled for the moment.
A motion from Sam's head had the wolves racing to the woods behind his house. Leah pushed herself hard, finding that she was the fastest out of her group.
Meanwhile, Paul was sure to shield his thoughts to obey the alpha's command. But he was venting internally, "God, I hate when he pulls that alpha shit on me. Just so I wouldn't hurt the precious she-wolf's little feelings. This shit sucked. Not only have I had to deal with the love sick Baby-Alpha's thoughts in my head, now I have to deal with Xena: Warrior-fucking-princess, too? What a goddamn motley crew. The Baby-Alpha and his band of merry men, Romeo #1 and #2, and now throw in a toddler and a girl. Really fucking intimidating. Whatever, I'm over it. The sooner we could get them to phase back, the sooner I could find Danielle- or maybe Bianca…she does that one thing…yeah definitely Bianca."
Leah's thoughts bounced around in her mind, "How is this possible? How the hell could this happen? Why? I've heard the legends since I was little- I know why this happened. Damn it, Taka Aki! Why?!"
Paul, Leah, you may talk now.
Thank you mighty Alpha. Leah couldn't help the acidic reply. She was so infuriated with him.
Leah, there are some things that we can tell you now to shed light on other things. Please, trust me and don't hate me anymore.
Yeah right, Sam. That's not going to happen anytime soon.
Jared, you go help Paul get Seth to phase back. Jake, you too. Embry, Quil and I will work with Leah. As soon as Seth is phased, Paul get over here. You have patrols next and I have some things to tell you.
Yeah whatever, Sam. I'll be sure to rollover and beg too.
Paul put all his attention into helping Seth phase back to human, volunteering advice along with Jared. If he wanted to get out of here before Leah showed up, then he would have to help the kid to the best of his ability.
Just think happy thoughts Seth…maybe there's a girl that you like? Jared asked.
Of course that's what he asks Paul thought.
Jared growled in his direction but didn't say anything.
Well…there's one girl… Seth said before a slender figure entered his mind. He'd seen her on the beach, but had never spoken to her before. She was obviously way older than him and he didn't know her name but that was ok; she was absolutely gorgeous to him. After a moment Seth began to relax and things began to look up, until Paul noticed who Seth had thought of. Bianca. Instantly images of some of the things she and Paul had done together flooded the pack mind. Seth was on his feet in an instant growling in Paul's direction.
Uh sorry…she's not the one kid…trust me…I destroyed that.
Seth's teeth snapped in Paul's direction, his frustration eating away at him.
Seth! Relax, bro! Jared tried to interrupt the thoughts of killing Paul that were swirling around. Killing him won't change anything. What else will calm you down? Do you have a favorite book? Music? What kind of stuff do you like?
Um, I like food. Spaghetti, pizza- especially the kind with all the meat, tacos- those are my favorite. I love cookies. All kinds of cookies, chocolate chip, snickerdoodles, um…
I think that's good, kid. Are you calm now? Paul asked.
Yeah, I'm good. I think I can do this. Do I just think hu-… Seth phased back and he, Jake, and Jared made their way into Sam's house to devour the food set out by Emily.
Paul picked his way over to where he knew Sam and the rest were trying to help Leah.
Damn it, Sam! I am trying! You are infuriating me. I do not want to share head space with you. EVER! Just please, shut it.
Paul chuffed a laugh as he listened to Leah putting Sam in his place. More people should do that.
He walked into the clearing and looked at Leah. His eyes met hers and time stopped, for Paul at least. The earth beneath his feet began to tremble and he tried to dig his paws in but he could feel himself floating away into nothingness-but there she was-Leah. She anchored him and kept him from flying off into the abyss. Lightning struck and it punctured his heart, searing her into his skin, burning her mark into his very soul. Her name began to repeat in his mind over and over, it had become his favorite song. The entire pack seemed in a trance as "Leah" reverberated in all of their minds, even in hers. All four males turned their attention completely on Leah, even Leah wanted a piece of Leah.
Sam was the first to notice something was wrong, really wrong. Why would he feel anchored to Leah Clearwater, he'd already imprinted…Paul!
Paul...you didn't! Sam snarled.
I…I...damn she smells so good.
She really does. Embry and Quil said in unison.
Damn. I really am great- it's about time everyone realized it. Leah remarked.
She's mine. Paul growled.
You've gotta be kidding me. Human, now! Sam Alpha ordered.
Leah's body was forced to comply with the alpha order and soon she found herself naked, on two legs. She was so happy to be human she didn't immediately notice the three men staring lasciviously at her naked form. Leah's hands instantly flew to cover as much of her exposed skin as possible. Sam and Embry at least had the decency to look away-no such luck with Paul and Quil.
"Do you mind?" Leah asked angrily.
"Not…at…all," Quil drawled just before catching a fist to the face.
"I do!" Paul snarled before turning to Leah with a triumphant smile. He too felt a fist crack his nose.
"What the hell Leah!?" Paul yelled.
"I was talking to both of you!" Leah yelled. She was frustrated and could feel herself begin to shake with anger again.
"Fuck, you broke my nose!" Paul said blowing out blood onto the grass.
"I really wanted to break your concentration, pervert!"
"Enough!" Sam cut in. "We've got a lot to go over tonight. Quil and Embry go to my house; let everyone know what's happened."
"What didhappen Sam?" Leah asked slowly, while narrowing her eyes. "One moment I'm angry, the next moment, I feel like I should run home and double click the mouse."
"Oh god…that sounds hot," Paul moaned
"Shut up Paul!" Leah shouted. "And what's with the perv who can't keep his eyes off me?"
"Well…he…Paul?" Sam said, turning to Paul, who looked like a deer caught in headlights.
"I…I've imprinted. You're mine now," Paul said confidently.
"You think I'm yours? What the hell?" she scoffed. "Just because you suddenly have fantasies about me and wanna fuck me does NOT mean that I am suddenly yours asshole. Last I checked, I still had a choice in the matter, unless my ALPHA," She said sneering the word, "orders otherwise, right?"
Paul just growled with a smirk, obviously titillated by the perceived challenge.
"I would never do that Leah. Calm down, this is a good thing. You were chosen for him by the spirits." Sam tried to reason.
"Spirits? Who the fuck cares what they want?! I am sick to DEATH of hearing what they want. That's Dad's reasoning for everything. 'The spirits deemed it so, Lee-lee.' Well I don't want to hear anymore about them today. " Casting a glance at Paul- her hands still attempting to cover her nakedness, she said, "Besides, if big-boy over there wants a piece of this, he's gonna have to work for it." With that she sauntered off, leaving the men to stare after her.
"Just give her sometime Paul; she'll come around," Sam said before heading of toward his house.
Paul stood there for a moment, staring into the direction Leah had run, contemplating his next move. The hunt was on. Her scent was all that filled his nostrils, her face all that ran through his brain. He wouldn't be happy until the sound of her calling his name was all that he could hear. He would claim her- she was his after all- but he had no problems with a little chase. Game on Clearwater, game on he thought to himself.
A/N: So how'd we do so far? Let us know by clicking review!