Golden eyes that crinkled in the corners smiled back at him. That dark brown mop of hair bounced up and down around his angelic face, a few drops of water sensually sliding down the younger boys tantalizing body. A body so scrawny that the wind may as well cause a real threat to tip it over, but with skin as fair as spotted porcelain. Derek stared at the beautiful boy laughing and almost dancing before him.
“Derek” his mother, Talia, called for him. The split second Derek turned to look at his mother was all it took for the beautiful boy to disappear. Panic rose inside Derek, and his wolf started pacing inside of him. Sensing her son’s sudden distress, Talia approached Derek.
“What’s wrong, my angel?” she asked her only son.
“He’s gone, mom. I swear, I only looked away for a second and now he’s gone!” Derek almost shouted with distress.
Talia opened her mouth to say something to her son when she was interrupted by her mate.
“Talia, Deucalion is calling for you.” Robert informed her.
Talia sighed and took her sons hand, pulling him along.
“It’ll have to wait, Derek” she stated. Derek dug his heels into the sand and pulled back his hand as hard as he could, but his mothers grip didn’t budge.
“But mom!” he shouted. Talia flasher her red alpha eyes at him, ending the fight in him.
“I’m sorry angel, but we have to go.” she explained to her son.
Derek looked back to the place where he had seen the young boy, but the spot was as vacant as it had been just seconds before. Sighing, Derek willingly followed his mother back to their family’s beach-camp.
Derek hadn’t had that dream for more than a decade now. The memory still came to him as if it had happened yesterday though, but somehow it seemed more real this time. Derek could have sworn that he smelled the young boy, but looking around him, he knew that it was just his imagination playing tricks on him again.
Angrily he threw his covers off and marched over to the bathroom to take a shower.
‘Might as well have been for the best’ he thought sourly to himself. Looking back he cringes a little. The day he met the boy was also the day the humans went to war against the werewolves. Deucalion had called his mother in, ordering her to strike back against the humans. As Derek knew she would, Talia refused Deucalion’s command. But Deucalion had already foreseen Talia’s refusal and forced her hand with an offer she could not refuse.
The war was easily won by the werewolves, the humans defeated just before the five year mark. Every human was to be hunted down and put in concentration camps where they would suffer for their crimes against the werewolves. Every human that resisted or tried to escape would be put to death. And any werewolf that helped hide humans suffered the same fate. Talia could do little more than to watch the world fall to ruin before her very eyes, but the offer Deucalion had made her was a one way ticket to death either way she looked at it. That’s how the Hale pack ended up controlling the biggest concentration camp on the West Coast. Once respected for their incredible power, now they were feared for it.
Sighing for the thousandth time that morning, Derek got dressed in his uniform and marched over to the camp to get his troops ready for the day. Violently kicking the door to the barracks open, he drew his brows together and wiped every emotion off of his face.
“If you’re not ready in five minutes, I will have your heads.” he said briskly before turning and almost crashing into his uncle on his way out.
“Woah nephew!” Peter shouted, putting his hands in the air.
“Whoever pissed you off this morning, I feel sincerely sorry for.”
Derek glared at Peter before pushing his way through, now heading for the Hale house again.
His mother sensing his foul mood, smiled at him when he entered the kitchen.
“What’s wrong, angel?” Talia asked.
“Don’t you think it’s a little inappropriate to call me ‘angel’, mother?” Derek asked with a sneer, not letting up on his scowl.
“And why would it be inappropriate for a mother to call her son angel, my angel?” Talia retorted smugly. She knew what Derek was referring to, but she knew her son’s sweet nature would be unable to turn foul. He was the most feared soldier apart from Deucalion and herself, but she knew he wished he could undo all the wrong he’d done. And if it cost Talia her life, she would make everything right again. If just to see her only son smile again. Derek had lost his smile the day the humans went to war, but Talia knew there was something else causing the absence of his happiness. She often thought back to that day, to the boy Derek had referred to when she had called for him.
‘Could it have been?’ she silently said to herself.
“Could what have been?” Derek asked her. Startled Talia smiled at her son, “Nothing. Just thinking about work, angel.” she said.
Derek was about to say something when Robert walked in the door sporting a freshly split lip.
“Deucalion wants a word with you, Derek.” his father states as if nothing was wrong.
“Dad? Did he…” Derek’s anger rose and his eyes flashed red, he didn’t even need to ask to know what Deucalion had done to his father.
“Derek, stop it!” his father shouted. Derek couldn’t believe his own ears.
“What! What! You got to be kidding me, dad. I am sick of that imbecile treating you as something dirty!” Derek shouted right back at his father.
“Derek!” Talia prompted.
“No, mom. Just….just don’t.” Derek turned to scowl at his father before turning and walking out, slamming the door shut. He can hear his father sigh and through their bond, he can feel his pain. Not from his split lip, but from his sons anger at him.
Even though Derek wished his father would stand up for himself, he knew there was little he could do. The deal Talia made concerned his father, her mate. Talia’s very human mate. He would live as long as Talia agreed to be commanded by Deucalion, but no promise was made to leave him untouched. Derek remembered all the times his father had ended up in the medical bay, just because something didn’t go Deucalion’s way or just because he was bored. Derek hated feeling powerless, but there was nothing he could do.
Barging into Deucalion’s headquarters, Derek scowled at him. Smiling Deucalion greeted Derek with wiping his father’s blood off of his hands and throwing the napkin at Derek’s feet. Grinding his teeth together Derek stared unfazed at Deucalion.
“Impressive,” Deucalion mused,
“If only your mother would be as cold hearted as her son.” He rose from his desk, walking around it to stand before Derek, lifting his head to make eye contact.
“I’m sending your team out to retrieve a group of humans spotted south of the city. They’ve managed to escape every time my men have tried. McCall and Lahey will be joining you.” Deucalion stated flatly.
“I will not have them..... Sir.” Derek sneered defiantly.
“It wasn’t a question.... boy.” Deucalion sneered just as harshly.
Grinding his teeth once more, Derek spat out “I have their sons on my team, it will not go over well if they’ll have to work together. There’s a reason they’re separated, remember?”
Deucalion scowled at Derek.
Of course he remembered why he had separated fathers and sons. Lahey and Rafael hated their sons, too soft around the edges, no spinal cord what so ever, he remember the fathers describing their sons.
Though, they did respond quite well under Derek’s command.
“You do as I say, welp!” Deucalion hissed at Derek.
“I am not my mother. You would do well to remember that.” Derek spat back before leaving Deucalion with an amused look on his face.
Stepping outside, Derek drew a deep breath before raggedly letting it out.
“Rough day?” Rafael McCall asked, faking interest.
Derek just scowled at him before walking over to his team’s barracks.
“Scott, Isaac.” Derek demanded.
The two in question stepped forward, an equal “Sir, Yes, Sir” on their mouths.
“Lieutenant McCall and Lahey will accompany us on this mission, I ask of you to be on your best behavior.” Derek could sense the tension now railing from the two younger boys. Their relationship with their fathers wasn’t a good one, even before the war, the boys had had trouble with their sires.
“We are to retrieve a group of humans south of the city border. There should be women and children with the group, though we will not let that prevent us from taking them. Do I make myself clear?” Derek’s eyes swipe over the faces he now recognize as friends. In unison they all shout out a “Sir, Yes, Sir.”
“I see you’ve trained them well.” He could hear the slick voice of Lt. Lahey speak behind him.
Derek just turned around while barking a command for his team to follow.
Lt. McCall and Lt. Lahey were thereby forced to fall in line behind Derek as they walked over to the trucks that would take them to their location.