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Howls of the Fallen

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It's late into a cold mid winter's night, the distant howls of a few lycans sounding into the silent atmosphere. The wolves are out to hunt tonight, tracking a few stray deer that wandered into their territory. The moon is high, casting it's light onto the frosted grass of the woodland area that belonged to the small pack. The head alpha male has his nose to the ground, tracking a buck that could provide food for at least a few of them. His soft chestnut fur is damp with falling snow, deep red eyes spotting his prey off in the distance. His second is right by his side, staying low to the ground as he waits for his alpha's command. The beta is nearly impossible to spot in the darkness, black fur blending in and leaving only a pair of lavender eyes behind. The alpha waits, glancing at his second to give the signal. The beta takes off to the left, flanking the startled buck while his alpha goes in for the kill. It's over within seconds, the proud alpha tipping his head back and howling to signify a kill. His bushy tail wags slightly at the sound of his pack praising him in the distance, his bloodied snout bumping against the beta's neck as he stood beside him.

"It's almost sick how much they love you," Nate mutters towards the wet grass below his padded feet, his stunning violet eyes meeting the blood red of the alpha.

"Your mood is horrible tonight," Mark whispers back as he licks at the drops of dew hanging off the black fur of the beta. "Usually a hunt with me helps your spirit."

The beta grunts as he shakes the wetness off of his scruff and curls around to the front of the fallen buck, sniffing it's sturdy antlers with his nose. His violet eyes narrow at the blood staining the thick showy throat of their latest kill.

"It's a shame we waste your gift on such beautiful creatures," Nate sighs as he begins to tear off a piece of flesh from the bone.

"Don't start up again," Mark warns as he turns towards the approaching pack. "Even if we didn't have a truce, our pack doesn't kill humans."

The sounds of the other wolves are getting closer, and despite Nate's need to vent he doesn't dare argue with Mark when there are other eyes and teeth nearby. The beta will find a better time to bring up the stupidity and danger that Mark's forever putting the pack into with his reckless compassion for such vile creatures.

"After we feed," Nate begins, his large ears lowering slightly, "I would like another word about -"

"Enough beta," Mark growls, his heckles raised. "You try my patience more and more. You share my bed, Nate, but not my role. Remember that."

Nate feels his heart twist at this, and wants to retort with something just as hurtful to the alpha's soul, but the grounds are now full of the pants and sniffs of the others, so he maneuvers to take his place at Mark's right side.

The beta swallows down the urge to whimper, his heart aching to be seen as something more than just his alpha's second. Mark has been sharing his bed with Nate for almost three years and never once has he mentioned mating him. The others don't see him in the light Nate believes he deserves. To them he's just another beta that Mark fucks from time to time. He's not their luna, and he never will be.

The pack is comprised of about six lycans. Tyler, a large wolf with piercing navy blue eyes and thick chocolate brown fur, is the only other alpha besides Mark. His demeanor is quiet and a bit militant, but the pack greatly respects him. In the pack's eyes Tyler is their second in command, not Nate.

It is Tyler who first notices the bitten leg of the deer, and shifts his steely gaze to the dark beta next to Mark’s right flank.

“Didn’t know that betas got first taste of the meat now,” he states, his tone fairly casual. “Unless you were testing it for poison, Nate. Is that what we all should assume?”

Nate growls at Tyler, his irritation was already being pushed too far to be called out by the other alpha. Mark always allowed him to enjoy any kill he wishes, even though Nate rarely took the loving gesture.

Mark flicks his tail, and it brushes against the black fur of his lover’s side. Nate goes silent at once, though his eyes still glare at the large chocolate wolf.

“This is supposed to be a meal, not a meeting,” Mark grumbles between the two. “I give first bite to whomever I choose, Tyler. This isn’t a new concept, which you very well know.”

The other lycans are shuffling around, their need for food becoming greater, especially with the smell of the new kill so close. Felix groans softly just behind Tyler’s back, his sandy blonde fur striking against the blackness of the forest.

“Alpha,” Felix says, his voice soft but still loud enough to be heard. “Is everything alright? Will we be able to eat soon?”

Mark raises his head to connect the red in his eyes to the bright blue of Felix's, making sure that the beta knows that he is speaking directly to him.

“There’s nothing wrong. Just a slight disagreement between old friends, but I won’t allow our petty quarrel to stop a meal.”

The alpha lifts his head high and barks loudly to call the attention of the others, and all eyes are on him.

“All but Tyler, Nate and myself feast on the buck. Pick it clean, and then head back to the sleeping grounds.”

The other lycans mutter sounds of both surprise and delight as they surge forward to get to the large carcass of meat, both Ethan and Felix saying soft “thank yous” as they pass by Mark to tear into the meat. Tyler gives a quick snort of annoyance, but turns to head to the clearing without another word, while Nate is almost beside himself with rage. Mark follows quickly behind Tyler without a backwards glance to the beta, his message clear that this is their punishment for arguing in front of the pack.