Earlier in the day, Hugh had kept staring at the words "London, Ontario", his stomach resembling mosh pit of sorts. The idea of getting the Headstones reunited had seemed silly, had felt even more ridiculous, but now it was too late to do anything to stop it. Had the moon been a full one, Hugh could have given into that sense of freedom and really howled.
Instead, he went to the hotel's gym and became best friends with the treadmill for over an hour. The wolf, Hugh thought, allowed it though he certainly grumbled plenty when Hugh did his warm up stretches.
Standing onstage many hours later, Hugh allowed the crowd's energy to wrap around him. Even the wolf was impressed.
The venue smelled of spilled beer, human sweat, and lust. It was perfect.
Tearing into one song after the other, Hugh let the wolf come out, inch by inch. The more he prowled the stage, staring hard at the adoring crowd, holding onto the mike stand like it was something, someone, he wanted to play-hurt, the further his human side was pushed away.
Hugh finished "Cemetery" and talked to the crowd, easing them down from that feeling of being sized up as prey. The wolf scoffed at Hugh's mental shrug.
"We don't hunt here," he told the wolf, "this is borderline Trebek Pack's territory." He enjoyed the wolf's snarl all the way down to the tip of his black boots.
It wasn't until the next-to-last chorus for "Reframed" that the wolf scented someone familiar.
Scanning the crowd as the band started the first chords for "Three Angels", Hugh separated all the smells until the wolf reached through and found their quarry.
His eyes followed the scent. Sure enough, Callum was there, wearing dark jeans and a thick black sweater, slouching against a wall near the entrance and looking like he'd rather be playing golf. Hugh licked his lips and raised his face, chin jutting out in mock defiance at Callum's nonchalance.
The wolf whimpered.
For a minute, Hugh wanted to dive into the mob, growling at every obstacle until he could tackle his mate. He adjusted himself, as discreetly as one could in front of a large group of people, feeling slightly more alive than before.
The full moon might have come and gone, but there was a subtle hardness in Callum's stare that turned Hugh's crank six ways to Sunday.
After the concert and the interviews, Hugh said goodnight to Trent and the boys.
Meeting Callum outside the club's doors, his eyes zeroed in the small, black duffel bag Callum was holding with one hand. Whatever it held inside, it was heavy.
And, maybe because of his higher rank, Callum was smoking. Hugh shook his head when Callum offered him a cigarette. "Maybe later," he mumbled before pointing the way back to his hotel.
They walked in silence, bundled up in their heavy coats, bumping shoulders every other block. Neither said "I miss you" or "I love you." Human speech was superfluous at the moment. Had the moon been out, they could have shed their clothes and taken off running.
Callum flicked his cigarette stub into a nearby storm drain before following Hugh through the automatic doors at the Savoy. The elevator ride to his--their--room was tortuously slow.
Deferring to Callum's status, Hugh opened the door and let him through first. He swallowed a groan when Callum took a hold of his wrist and pulled him inside.
Trying to shake off some of his nervousness, Hugh ran a hand over his scalp after closing the door. It was time to go on the offensive. He leaned against the door, arms crossed. "So, I see you've been let off his leash."
Callum twisted his head, almost looking over his left shoulder before giving him a quick shrug. He then walked over to the king-size bed and dropped the bag, with a soft thud, on the carpet.
Both sets of Hugh’s ears--wolf and human--pricked up.
Callum took off his boots and padded over to where Hugh was standing. He tilted his head to the side before grabbing Hugh's wrists and pulling them to either side of Hugh's body. "He's your Alpha too," he said before nibbling an ear, "don't ever forget that."
And then there was teeth and playful (but not nice) bites. Callum's hot, nicotine-scented breath and the scratch-scratch of his stubble against Hugh's skin was an almost too-stimulating combination. From somewhere inside him, the wolf yipped with elation after hearing Callum's own wolf demanding submission.
Cock grown hard at the lick-bite/wrist-grab combo that Callum was doing, it took a little bit of time before Hugh could speak again. "He might be the Alpha . . . but I'm not his bitch."
"No, you're mine," Callum said as he took a whiff. "Right now, though, you smell entirely too human."
Though it wasn't a challenge, Hugh pushed forward. "Oh, yeah? And what do you plan to do about it?"
Callum let go of Hugh's wrists and slid his hands up until they were on Hugh's shoulders. He leaned back and locked eyes with Hugh, pushing him against the door at the same time he pressed his groin against him.
"I'm sure I can think of something," Callum said, his smile predatory enough to leave Hugh nearly panting with want. A few seconds later, Callum got close enough for his lips to barely touch Hugh's mouth.
Hugh twisted his head to the side after the second near-kiss, exposing as much of his neck as possible. Hopefully, there would be marks in the morning.
Callum's low groan told him everything he needed to know. They had just gotten started.