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.
The three make their way back to the sleeping grounds, which are a few small cabins scattered across the forest floor. Mark's of course is the largest, which he shares with Nate. There's an unspoken rule that only mates can live together, but Mark has been bending this rule for the past three years. Everyone knows what goes on inside that cabin, yet they all turn a blind eye. Nate is just a hole to fuck, nothing more.
Mark stalks up to the front door of his cabin, standing to his feet as his body seamlessly shifts to reveal a strong Eurasian man with warm chocolate eyes and messy black hair. Nate and Tyler shift as well, following the alpha's lead as he ushers them into the cabin. Mark slips on a pair of shorts, tossing Nate's clothing at him while Tyler covers his nudity as well.
"You wanna explain what the hell that was all about back there?" Mark's question is aimed at Tyler, and there's a bite in his voice that shows just how offended he is about how Tyler treats Nate in front of him.
Tyler's mouth forms into a tight lipped frown, but he pauses his thoughts to be as diplomatic as possible. He has never liked Nate acting as if he was actually Mark's mate, let alone his equal. The slender man sits at a small table and tilts his head towards the beta, though his blue eyes still stay locked on Mark’s brown gaze.
“He's too full of himself, Mark,” Tyler begins, “And as your friend, and as the only other alpha in this pack, I think it's my duty to mention it when your furry toys get better treatment than they deserve.”
Nate actually growls at the comment and advances on the taller man, his dark features menacing under dark brown hair. Mark raises his arm and stops Nate’s movement towards Tyler, though the smirk on the other alpha’s face shows that he has made his point.
As Mark pushes Nate behind him and surges towards Tyler himself, it's too late for Tyler to realize that he has stepped out of bounds. Within a few moments Mark has slammed the larger man into the dusty cabin floor, his strong hand pushing the side of Tyler’s head against the dirty wood.
“You don’t have to like my choices,” Mark growls as he feels Tyler whimper in submission, “but you will respect me. Is that clear, alpha?”
Tyler suppresses a growl, letting his body go slack to show that he wasn't up for a challenge right now. Tyler has never once challenged Mark for the right to lead the pack, but Nate was becoming more of a liability with each passing day. The beta has made it clear that he despises the humans, and his recklessness will only start up a war between the humans once again.
Nate smirks, crossing his arms as Mark let's the alpha go. He's not inconspicuous about how much he enjoyed seeing Mark put the alpha in his place, but he keeps his mouth shut for the time being. He's still on Mark's shit list and mouthing off will only earn him a night out in the cold with an empty belly.
"I expect you to respect Nate as a member of this pack. Whether he's my mate or not is irrelevant. He still contributes to the survival of our pack, and so he deserves your respect. Understood?"
"Yes, alpha." Tyler murmurs, shuffling to his feet once Mark allows him to move. The head alpha dismisses him, waiting until Tyler has left the cabin before turning his attention to Nate.
Mark waits until the scent of Tyler has died down to a soft hint of musk before rounding back towards his lover. Nate is already on the ground and lowering his head to expose his neck in submission.
“Forgive me alpha,” he offers as his dark eyes flicker to watch Mark’s bare feet come towards him.
“Stand up,” Mark sighs as he takes hold of Nate’s narrow shoulders. “I’m done with dealing with such useless bickering tonight.”
Nate nods his head and gets to his feet, Mark already slinking into the large bed in the corner and under the covers. The alpha exhales a deep breath as he turns away from the beta, already feeling the dark brown eyes on his naked back as he tries to get more comfortable. Mark tries to remember that Nate has softness and kindness underneath the sharp tongue and teeth, though it gets to be more days and nights between seeing that side of him appear.
The beta thinks carefully about his next move, already aware that Mark hasn’t said that he can’t go back out and eat on his own. He feels a slight tremor of hunger in his torso, and considers leaving for a quick hunt, the lingering smell of a rabbit or two not very far away at all.
“If you were waiting for my permission to hunt, then you have it.” Mark says, a slight yawn in his deep voice. “Your nose can smell the small ones outside just as well as mine.”
The beta takes a step towards the door, and then reconsiders his plan. The need to get in the better graces of his alpha was more important than food.
Nate bites his plump bottom lip, inching towards the bed they shared and climbing in next to his lover. Mark's scent is radiating off of him in waves, his rich woodsy aroma thickly weaved with stress and irritation. Nate could smell just how agitated he was, and so the beta hesitantly reached out to touch Mark's shoulder. The alpha growled, shifting onto his back to glare at Nate. The beta ignored his look of irritation, pushing back the covers to straddle Mark's lap. They both knew where this was going, and soon the cabin would be filled with Mark's animalistic sounds and Nate's moans of pleasure. The beta was offering his body to his alpha as an apology, letting him work out his stress in a more intimate way. Mark narrows his eyes, watching as Nate leans down to brush his soft lips against his jawline.
"Nate..I'm tired and very cranky. Now is not the time for this." Mark snarls, hands gripping Nate's hips tightly. The beta smirks, kissing his lover's neck in the exact spot he wishes to mate him.
"You're tense, alpha. Let me help you." Nate murmurs, gently biting at Mark's neck. The alpha let a very inhuman noise slip past his lips, roughly flipping them over and pinning Nate against the bed. The beta was offering to help, so why not take advantage of that?
Nate looks up at his alpha with wide brown eyes and a soft smile, his warm hands reaching up to touch Mark's thick muscled shoulders. Mark’s toned legs brush against the beta’s smaller frame and Nate spreads his thighs open and pushes himself towards Mark’s growing erection.
“Alpha,” Nate whispers, his eyes half closed and dreamy. “Let me make you feel good. End the night with just us, together.”
Mark feels a rumble in his chest, the cool air on his back mixing with the heat underneath the thick blankets. He leans down to nibble at the beta’s chin and soft lips, the smell of lavender and thyme deep in his nostrils as Nate sighs in his ears.
“You know I can’t say no to you when you smell the way you do,” Mark coos as he peppers the man under him with soft kisses. “Your scent is my weakness my love, and you know that.”
Nate chuckles as he opens his mouth and his legs wider, and the alpha surges forward, his tongue roaming around the beta’s mouth like a serpent, strong fingers pulling down the soft shorts of his lover to reveal his rock hard length underneath his grasp.
A short thrust and a moment later, Nate is filled and gasping for breath. Only the growls of Mark and the soft squeak of the bed are all the sounds that can be heard.
"Alpha.." Nate mewls, blunt nails digging into Mark's shoulder blades. They're moving slow, with Nate grinding his hips into his lover's to meet Mark's gentle thrusts. The air is already thick with the scent of sweat and sex, mixing with each wolf's musky aroma. Nate's lips are on Mark's, tongue sliding against his alpha's to taste the hint of blood that still lingered from their kill. The beta is whining, a different sort of hunger growing as Mark begins to grind his cock against Nate's sensitive walls. He's still a bit loose from their romp last night, but the sweet sting of stretching past his limits is still there. His alpha was not a small man, and even after three years of fooling around he's still surprised by how thick his alpha is.
Mark's hips are circling, thrusts gaining speed. Nate is finding it difficult to breathe, the sheer force of Mark's thrusts is forcing the air from his lungs and slamming the bed into the cabin wall.
"F-fuck! Harder, alpha please!" The beta begs, his voice strained. Nate's moans are getting louder, and Mark can feel him clenching around his fat cock as he comes closer to release.
Mark grinds deeper between Nate’s shuttering thighs, still dizzy from how tight the beta is around him. Nate was always intoxicating when they made love, and the alpha could barely stand how beautiful he is when he's trembling underneath him, his small chin and thick lips lifting up towards the ceiling.
“Beta,” Mark moans as he brushes the back of his hand across Nate’s smooth face. “So gorgeous when I’m inside you. So gorgeous.”
Nate’s heart flutters at the words, wanting to hear more but too focused on meeting Mark’s hips that he can’t think, let alone speak. His mouth releases a high pitched cry, and Mark picks up speed. It won’t be much longer now until they are both cumming under a veil of rich howls.
The others will hear them and shake their heads as they move to their small cabins, their respect for their alpha going past their growing fears for the mouthy beta, but just barely. As each day goes by with more unrest between him and the rest of the pack, Mark will need to make a choice and the pack is fairly certain it will be them.
The smell of climax is in the air, and Nate claws at the tanned back of his alpha. Mark's thrusting is getting even deeper and faster as he snarls behind gritted teeth. Nate opens his eyes and exposes his neck, hoping...almost praying that the alpha will finally mark him on his own. When Mark dips down to kiss at his scent gland, Nate feels his heart almost stop.
“M-mark, please,” he stammers, “make me yours forever. I love you, alpha. Please.”
Mark's hips stutter, teeth just barely grazing the skin of Nate's pale neck. They've never discussed mating before, at least not to each other. But Mark knows how desperate the beta is to finally have that title. Mark laps at his lover's neck, reaching in between them to fondle Nate's neglected cock. The beta pants as Mark jerks him off, clenching around his lover so tightly he can hardly move. Mark swears under his breath, Nate's thick release covering his hand and chest as he works him through his orgasm. Mark groans, eyes closing as he unloads deep inside the beta. Nate's eyes roll back, panting and squirming as he waits for the bite that will never come.
Mark is an alpha, and alphas belong with omegas. Mark needs to carry on his lineage, and Nate can't give him pups due to his subgender. It kills him to know this, to think that Mark is only wasting his time on Nate until he can find a good omega to carry his pups. Nate's heart is shattered when Mark kisses his neck and pulls away, trying to catch his breath.
The alpha pulls out with a wet 'pop', already flipping Nate over and spreading his cheeks to clean up the mess he made with his tongue. The beta shivers, fisting the sheets and trying not to let that bitter feeling of rejection ruin this moment for them. He just hoped that Mark would have mated him by now. It's been three years and Mark still hasn't shown any interest in taking this any further than fuck buddy status. He's using Nate, even though he doesn't want to. Mark loves him, but he doesn't love him enough to bond them together for life, and that hurts more than Nate cares to admit.
Nate's head lies heavy on the pillow as he feels Mark continue to lick him clean, his vision becoming blurry through slow forming tears. He blinks and they fall, smearing on his soft cheeks. The alpha grunts lovingly as he reaches for the beta's hand, but Nate pulls away when he senses Mark's fingertips grazing his knuckles.
"I thought cuddling afterwards was your favorite part," Mark mumbles as he licks the inside of the beta's slender thighs.
"Holding me will just give me nothing but false hope for more," Nate mumbles back. The beta feels Mark sigh against his skin and shuffle gently next to him in the bed. Nate turns his head away from the warm brown eyes of the alpha as he nuzzles up behind him. Strong hands wrap around his chest and rub the black pawprint mark on the spot right above his heart.
Lycans always carry a mark in the shape of a pawprint on their chest when they are in human form. If the wolf was born of another wolf the mark would be the same color as their fur when in wolf form. However, if the wolf was a turned human, then the mark would be the same fur color of the wolf who turned them.
"Please just let me be," Nate whimpers as he curls up in a smaller ball. "Your comfort feels like pity, and nothing more."
Mark pulls away from the beta, and turns over so the two males are back to back. In his heart he understands that Nate is suffering, and he has been since his mate Cristina and their pup Willow were killed over three years ago. The alpha was there, his sturdy feet too late to stop what those twisted humans did to so many or their kind. There are nights even now where Mark searches his soul to find out how those men knew where the nursery was. The elders and the leaders of so many packs had kept it's location a secret for so long.
It was Mark who heard the howls of the fallen, and who's paws were the first to dig into the soft earth to bury so many females, male omegas, and small pups. So any graves and so many howls of despair.
"Not all humans were like the ones who killed your family," Mark says softly, his back still turned but the intake of breath behind him let's him know that Nate did hear him. Truth be told Nate wasn't the only one that lost someone that day. Felix lost his mate as well, a beta named Marzia that honestly brought out the best in him. And Mark lost his littermate, Amy. To say that Nate was alone in this would be a baldfaced lie. Everyone suffered from what happened that tragic day. But while the others chose to channel that loss into something good, Nate let it eat away at him until he was nothing but an empty shell. He's bitter and angry, vengeful against the humans that have already payed for their crimes.
Mark took him in after that, offering comfort while Nate licked his wounds. But what was meant to be just a friendly gesture soon turned into a relationship that would only bring them pain.
"Where were you that night? When my mate and pup were slaughtered by the hands of your precious humans..Willow was only five months old, Mark. She didn't deserve to die that way." Nate softly whispered, but Mark could hear the venom in his words. He was accusing Mark of abandoning his pack.
The alpha twitches violently at those words, and even more at the emotions behind them. How dare this wolf...this beta...hurl his body at him less than an hour ago, and now during a time where they should be enjoying each other's warm scents they're bringing up cold reminders of the past. Mark had no way of knowing that him leaving to meet with the Elders to discuss the new territories would be the day that so many wolves would die.
He would have done anything to protect the others, and the burden of all that loss was heavy on all of the pack leader's hearts.
The look of terror frozen in Cristina's bright yellow eyes haunted the alpha even now, her dying breath to protect little Willow from the blows of the invaders. If the pup had just been a little bigger she may have been able to run faster, but her tiny body was only feet away from her mother. Her small face terrified and confused.
Mark still has the scar on his leg from Nate attacking him when he tried to block him from searching the grounds for survivors after so many days, his obsession past anything the other wolves had ever seen.
“I take your silence as you have no more to say on the matter," Nate grunts as he pulls up the blankets ever tighter around him.
“There's no need to fight," Mark says, his voice as calm as he can make it. "Especially about that. Your loss was great, and I am not ever going to say that you have no right to be angry."
Nate feels burning tears on his cheeks again, and the need to be held is wearing down the desire to be hateful towards the alpha. Mark realizes his struggle and slides his strong arms around the smaller waist of the beta, and pulls him against his muscled chest. Nate almost purrs as Mark licks the shell of his ear, the calming heartbeat of the alpha exactly what the beta needed.
“I love you Nate," Mark mutters as he nuzzles his nose against the back of the beta's head. "Let me help you get past this hatred. I love you so much."
Nate chokes on the air in his lungs, unable to hold back the searing pain he felt in his heart. If Mark truly loved him he would mate the beta and put and end to all this silly drama. Nate's heart beats for his alpha, and even though he knows Mark won't give in he still holds out hope. He knows that mating a beta is against tradition, but that shouldn't matter to Mark.
Nate turns to face him, and Mark can see just how broken this beta truly is.
"Then why didn't you mate me? I've been waiting for three years, Mark. I've put my trust in you, gave you my heart and my body. But it's still not enough. What do I need to do to make you see that we belong together?"
Mark is silent for a moment, choosing his words carefully. What could he say that wouldn't wound his lover anymore than he already was? The alpha sighed, sitting up as he forced his mouth to spew out his truthful response.
"Because you're unworthy."
Mark's response burns like liquid fire in the beta's ears. His dark brown eyes turn bright violet as he growls at the alpha. Nate sits up and snarls lowly as he shifts, his skin covered in thick black fur, and his nose now a thick muzzle of sharp teeth.
“Nate," Mark says, his low voice hinting at a severe warning. "You need to calm yourself. The pack is asleep, and they don't need any more noise than -"
"The pack," Nate snarls as he jumps down to the cabin floor, large paws thundering as he paces the bedroom area. "That's all you fucking care about, alpha. The pack. Never me. You never cared. Never loved me. Even tonight I gave myself to you and what do I get in return? Unworthy of you? Unworthy to be your mate. I'll only ever be your...toy."
The alpha slides from the bed and stands up, still nude and glaring down at the wolf.
"There are reasons to why I said what I said," Mark replies, his voice trembling with impatience with the lycan circling him.
“Just because I can’t carry your pups is no reason to call me unworthy. There are plenty of females and omegas who can’t carry to term, and they are worthy of being by the side of their alphas. Mated and respected by -“
"Even if you were an omega, I couldn’t mate you. You're dangerous and reckless, Nate," he continues, "In your heart and mind you know that to be true. I need someone by my side who I can trust to be fair handed in the pack, and who can lead the weaker without using fear or pain."
Nate lets a vicious growl rip from his throat, his lips curled up to reveal his sharp teeth. His heart is filled with rage and pain, hearing the exact words that he's been so terrified of since they started this little affair.
Those words burned into him like a hot brand, and Nate knew he had no place here anymore. Mark used him, led him on, and hurt him. He didn't belong here. He never did.
"You..fucking hypocrite. You say I'm the one that's going to get us killed? You are so blinded by your own ego that you can't see the threat that lies before you. Those humans will be back to finish us off! They've already cut our numbers down by more than half, yet you say they're harmless. You're a fucking joke, Mark. This pack is a joke. And I will not stand here and let you get us all killed!" Nate snarls, but he makes no move to attack Mark. He just wants to run, to get as far away from these lycans as he possibly can. He's not going to die here because of Mark. Fuck him and fuck the pack. Nate was always a lone wolf anyways.
Nate turns his head towards the door, the decision already settled into the marrow of his bones. This wasn't his pack anymore. It hadn't been since he lost Cristina and Willow. He would get over Mark in due time, once he got away from seeing those soft brown eyes in his mind and his scent out of his nose, then he would be free. Finally free to do what he should have done years ago. Avenge the fallen wolves, and his mate and daughter.
“Please Nate," came Mark's voice as he walks towards the snarling wolf, his right arm outstretched in a calming way.
“Don't you dare treat me like I'm some fucking dog to be patted," Nate spat back at the alpha. "No more will I bow to your word or waste my love on the likes of you. I'm done with us, Mark. You and I...whatever the fuck you call this, It's over."
The alpha knows that there is no reason to try and talk this out, and with a nod of his head he lowers his hand. It takes all of the strength Mark has not to cry at the loss of his love, but he knew this day would come eventually. Mark would need a mate soon, and Nate just wasn't that person for him.
"Take care of yourself, Nate," Mark says simply as he sits back on the bed. "Even though it was hard to see at times, I do love you dearly, but I would never force you to stay."
"You never tried to keep me here in the first place. You only used me to keep your bed warm. My alpha, the greatest liar I've ever known." Nate lets a tear slide down his face, soaking into his fur as he turns to leave. Mark never begged him to stay. Never chased after him and told him he was wrong. He let Nate go, and once the beta was gone and his scent had left the room Mark broke down in a heap to grieve.
In the course of a single night he had attacked a member of his pack and lost the love of his life. Mark's heart was heavy with grief, and the only comfort he had to ease the pain was the pillow he held crushed against his chest. Nate's scent was heavily saturated into the fabric, and Mark wished that things could have been different between them. But Nate made it clear that he expected more from Mark than he was willing to give. The beta had every right to be hurt and angry, but so did Mark. Nate's hateful words hit him like an axe to the chest, and it was taking everything in him to not chase after him and bring him back. Part of him wanted to believe that this was just a fight and that Nate would be back in the morning. But that was just a fantasy. He'd lost Nate, and Mark didn't know if he'd ever see him again. The alpha cried into the pillow, tipping his head back and howling in agony. He doesn't remember falling asleep, but soon Mark is quiet and still, having one last dream about the violet eyed wolf.
The black wolf moves swiftly through the forest, his violet eyes stinging with falling tears as he weaves around thick tree trunks. There are only two goals on his fevered mind, to get as far away from the sleeping grounds as his paws will carry him, and to look for humans.
The second task would prove to be more difficult, as Mark made it a point to always keep as much distance from humans as possible. Nate recalls the alpha explaining that it was for “everyone’s privacy” but the beta knew better. It was to protect those brutal beasts from the lycans. Even then Nate knew that Mark was little more than a puppet for men. He sniffs at the air, still trying to get the last lingering scent of the alpha out of his nose. What the hell did he ever see in him? That pathetic excuse of fur and teeth wasn’t worth the tears he shed for so many years.
He turns his head back for the first time and his heart soars at not seeing even a hint of the sleeping grounds anymore. His lips curl in satisfaction as his striking eyes dart towards a large thicket of moss, where a hapless brown rabbit is sitting as still as possible. It’s black eyes are wide in fear as it looks up at the hulking wolf.
“Don’t worry my friend,” Nate coos as he turns away from the tiny prey. “You are not what I am hungry for tonight.”
The wolf wanders further into the forest, the sun barely peeking out from behind the horizon line. The thick coverage of trees are beginning to thin out, and there, just beyond the treeline is a village. It's dark and quiet, the dying embers of a fire long since put out. Nate growls lowly, stalking up to the small assembly of wooden houses. It's dawn, which meant that most of the humans that lived here should still be asleep. Nate's belly growls, demanding fresh meat to satisfy his growing hunger.
The black wolf is silent, violet eyes locked on the sleeping frame of a boy curled up in bed. The door is unlocked, allowing Nate to nudge it open with his snout. The boy isn't alone. His entire family is sleeping beside him, and Nate growls at the memory of his own mate and pup that were ambushed as they slept.
The boy looks to be no more than three or four years old as he snuggles tightly against his mother’s side. On the other end of the bed is an older man, and with the identical noses it's clear that this is the father of the boy. They are all sleeping soundly with not one ounce of protection around them. Were humans this stupid or is this their arrogance to think that the truce would always keep them safe?
Whatever the reason, Nate was ready. He would be able to kill everyone in the first cabin within minutes. Then he would slip into the next cabin and repeat the deed until all the floorboards in every home were stained crimson.
The beta sets his violet eyes on the father first, then the mother, and lastly the boy. His teeth are bared and he places a paw inside the dark room, his movements as silent as a shadow. Then as if it's a ripple through the cold night air he hears Mark’s deep voice echo inside of his racing mind.
Don’t become what you hate.
Nate flinches at the imagined warning, and shakes his head to remove the lingering doubts. This is the choice he should have made years ago. One day the others, and perhaps even his former alpha would understand what he had to do.
Then he takes a final breath and goes charging into the cabin, his jaws opened wide to attack.
The father was the first to die, startled awake by Nate's vicious growl. There was no time to alert anyone. No time to scream before the wolf's jaws were clamped around his throat. Within minutes the cabin was stained crimson, and Nate had effectively slaughtered an entire family. His fur was matted with blood, moving from house to house with an insatiable appetite for blood. Each victim represented his anger and resentment towards Mark, and their deaths were retribution for his own lost loved ones. Nate had no remorse for what he'd done, and by the time the sun came up the village was reduced to a graveyard.
The wolf licked his maw, ears perking up at the sound of footsteps behind him. Nate turned his head to face his next victim, violet eyes narrowed as they met with the startled blue of a young man. He must have been hunting while the village slept, dropping his gun and satchel as fear overtook his body.
“And then there was one,” Nate mutters to the man, and it is only then that the human realizes what he’s facing. This was not a mere wolf, but what his village has whispered about around the campfires for years. That there was a truce between the humans and the lycans, but no one truly knew how long it would last.
The small man takes a tentative step back and the beta gives a dark chuckle. Did this filthy thing believe that he could actually outrun him?
“Please, don’t hurt me,” the man says, the soft inflection of an Irish accent playing around the small voice. Nate’s large ears perk up, realizing that his last kill wasn’t from this land. Mild curiosity gets the better of him and he wants to hear the accent again.
“What’s your name, human?” Nate asks, his violet eyes scanning the slender body and soft face of the boy.
“Jack,” the man stammers, his eyes transfixed on the dark creature in front of him.
“It’s a shame that you weren’t here earlier Jack,” Nate coos as he squares up to leap upon his final prey. “You missed so much fun, but don’t worry. I’ll make sure to remember your death the most.”
The boy shifted back on his right foot, eyes fixed on the wolf before him as he prepared to make a run for it. He most likely wouldn't even make it a foot away before the lycan was able to take him down, but he had to try and make it to safety. Nate widened his stance, thin black lips pulled back in a threatening snarl. Jack exhaled slowly, calming his racing heart for a moment before he made his move to escape. The boy turned his back on the wolf, taking off into a sprint that was surprisingly fast for a human.
Nate barked out a growl, snapping his jaws as he chased after the frightened Irishman. The boy had his sights set on a small opening near the cliffs, and Jack knew from experience that it was just big enough for him to squeeze through. Even if Nate were to shift into his human form he wouldn't be able to fit through the gap in the rocks. Jack was smaller than the average human, which gave him quite the advantage when it came to running and hiding. He just had to make it two more feet and he'd be safe.
The wolf was hot on his heels, snarling and snapping at the back of Jack's legs as he neared the opening between the rocks. Jack glanced behind him, gasping when the wolf pounced. Nate sank his sharp claws into the boy's back, taking him down to the forest floor in a crumpled heap. Jack yelped, panicked blue eyes wide with fear as Nate bit down on his shoulder. He was no more than a foot away from the opening, clawing at the ground in a vain attempt at freedom. He just needed to gain the upper hand for a moment and he'd be ok.
Jack grabbed the large rock next to him on the ground, straining his arm as the wolf tore into his back. The Irishman twisted around and bashed the rock against the side of Nate's head, stunning him enough for Jack to escape certain death.
Nate gave a quick yelp more out of surprise than out of actual pain. His massive head was made of tough muscle and thick fur, but he still shook it, trying to throw off the daze he felt. Jack scrambled to his feet and ran as fast as he could towards the opening of the cliff, not daring to look back. The only focus in his mind was to get to safety and then check on his wounds.
The beta was moving now, this steps tentative at first. His growls rumbling in his chest as he slowly advanced on the young man.
"You're a fighter, Jack," Nate called to the human's retreating back. "I like that, making me work for the kill."
The Irishman was doing his best to ignore the lycan, though the taunts were making him angry. He knew that the jabs were just a way to distract him from getting to the cliff side, and Jack had no plans to die here by the jaws of a wolf.
Nate glanced his vivid eyes towards the place where Jack was going, and he give a loud bark of laughter as be began to pick up the pace.
"So you're a bunny scampering to your little hole now?" the beta asked, his tone laced with extreme amusement.
The pain in Jack's opened back was searing now, and his legs were shaking as he continued his surge to safety, very aware that the steady foot falls of the wolf were getting closer to him. He was almost to the opening, if he could just keep moving a little longer..
Then with a burst of energy that the man didn't know he had, he takes a leap and makes it inside the opening of the cliff, just as sharp teeth clamped onto the air just behind him. Nate was just out of his reach, snarling and snapping his jaws as those vivid eyes glared daggers at Jack through the opening. The wolf was slinging curses and death threats at the brunette, foaming at the mouth like he was rabid.
The human ignored him for a moment, his mind too caught up in the searing pain radiating down his back. Nate had opened up a nice sized wound on his back, and Jack was pretty sure that he would die from infection if the blood loss didn't kill him first. The bite on his shoulder was throbbing, gushing warm blood down his chest as he let his tired body collapse onto the ground.
Jack's vision was spotty, head swimming. Nate's voice was becoming warped and distant, fading into the background as he began to black out.
The beta watched the human struggle to stay upright, very aware that the bites he gave him were incredibly deep. There was no way that the boy would survive the wounds he inflicted, but Nate was taking no chances if he could help it. The opening was too narrow to get his head through as the massive wolf, but perhaps in human form he could make it to the man huddled in the back of the tiny cave.
Within a few moments Nate's thick fur retreated into his skin, and his large paws became much smaller hands and feet. He stretched his nude body for the slightest of moments before he stood up, his now dark brown eyes still glued onto the tiny crack of the cliff side.
"Jack," the beta said, his voice as smooth as he can make it. "It's time to stop this game, and accept your fate. Come out of your hole, little rabbit."
"F-fuck you." Jack managed to murmur, flopping onto his stomach to try and crawl deeper into the cave. Nate huffed, slipping his hand into the crack between the rocks. His fingers could just barely touch the ball of Jack's foot, but Nate's wider torso stopped him from getting too far inside the cave. The lycan cursed under his breath, growling as Jack managed to escape his grasp. But the human wasn't out of the woods just yet. That bite to his shoulder would bring with it a nasty curse, if it didn't kill him first. Nate knew this, could feel how weak his fragile body was as blood poured from his wounds.
"You're going to die in there, little rabbit. Your soft form will be nothing more than a writhing pile of rotten bones! This isn't over. I will single handedly wipe out your worthless species if I have to!" Nate spat, glaring daggers at the semi unconscious human before him. There was no way that Jack would make it out of this alive. So Nate decided to leave him there to rot, shifting back into his wolf form before taking off into the forest to find the other villages nearby.
The morning dew is thick on the leaves of the forest as Mark opens the door to his cabin, his warm brown eyes still mingled with redness from all the tears from last night. He is soft in his movements as he shifts into the black form of a wolf and sniffs at the air hoping to catch even the slightest scent of lavender and thyme.
"He left didn't he?" asks a small voice from behind a small thicket of bushes, and Mark feels his heart race until his scarlet eyes see Tyler crawling out of the underbrush to join him.
"Our relationship is complicated, Tyler," Mark mutters, his nose still twitching as the breeze changes direction. "Even if it was any of your concern, I need to at least see if I can make him see reason."
The other alpha narrows his striking blue eyes towards the brightening sky. He doesn't understand the pull that the beta has on his alpha, but he can't help but feel the need to help his friend's breaking heart. Tyler snorts to get rid of the scent of stale air and lifts his nose to the sky to offer help.
"The wind to the north has shifted since I have been out to watch the sunrise," the brown wolf mumbles. "As if there has been some change in the forest, and not for the better."
Tyler turns to watch as Mark begins to head north at a steady pace, his ears alert and large tail swishing in concern as he disappears into the thicket of the tall looming trees. The other alpha sighs as he shifts into his human form, his blue eyes wary of what Mark will find, and what Nate might have already done.
The alpha's nose catches the faint scent of copper and earth, his ears pinned back as he follows the telltale signs of death's arrival. The sunrise is painting soft shades of red across the pale blue sky, and Mark knows that blood has been spilt this night. His eyes are narrowed with concern as he approaches the dying embers of a fire long since burned out, smoke rising towards the sky in wisps of grey. It's deathly quiet, and the closer Mark gets to the village the more apparent the dark crimson is that stains the earth at his feet.
Mark feels his heart beat hard against his rib cage as he begins to search the grounds. He feels the ripple of heartbeats newly stopped, and the smell of Nate heavy in the air. The village is as silent as a whisper and he begins to search each of the little houses, already terrified of what his fight with the beta had caused the poor humans in this tiny place.
The alpha winces at the carnage and the senseless overkill. The rage of his lover was in every torn out throat and eaten muscle. Mark nuzzles a small boy’s cheek, his brown eyes wide and empty.
Mark moves from doorway to doorway begging in his heart to find at least one survivor, but his hope is in vain. Nate was always a skilled killer, no matter what the prey was.
Scarlet eyes in tears, Mark finds a nearby stream by a small cliff to wash off the blood from his large paws before he heads out to find Nate. The need to stop him is deep in his pained soul, but first he will need to alert the elders to the slaughter. Each and every one of these humans deserve a proper burial, and that’s the least that the alpha can ensure.
But the alpha's ears perked up to the faint sound of a pained whimper. Mark cocked his head, confused as he followed the sound to the opening in the cliff face. He expected Nate to leave no survivors behind, but apparently he missed someone. The alpha warily approached the gap in the rocks, peering inside to see where the source of the sound was. And to his utter horror and surprise a young man was lying on the ground, his lithe frame shaking like a leaf as blood seeped into the soil from his open wounds.
This boy was very clearly the victim of a lycan attack, and Mark could see the deep puncture wounds on his shoulder that could have only come from a lycan's bite. He could smell death in the air, could hear his faint heartbeat thumping against his ribs. But he could also sense a change in the boy's bones. He wasn't exactly human any longer.
Mark takes a deep breath, his red eyes turning back to deep brown and paws extending into long muscled fingers. Once he has fully shifted into a man he reaches in and is just able to grab hold of the ankle of the of the young man. He pulls as gently as he can, his right shoulder almost wedged in the slender gap, but with relief he is able to drag the poor creature out of the hole.
The alpha scoops him up in his arms and moved him swiftly to better air and light to look him over, his dark features scanning his soft face. The wounds are even worse than he first thought, and still heavily bleeding. The boy is mumbling softly, blue eyes crusted with a blending of tears, sweat, and dirt. It might be better to just put him out of his misery, but something about his spirit tells Mark that he’s fighting with all of his heart to stay alive more than anything.
Mark bit his lip, knowing that the only thing that can save him is to let him turn. As a lycan he'll be able to heal himself rather quickly, but Mark will have to keep him stable until the bite consumes him. It shouldn't be long, since the boy was bitten by a rather powerful wolf. Mark can't be sure that Nate was the one responsible for this until he sees significant evidence that it was his doing. There are a few rogue lycans that like to roam around this area, and killing humans isn't nearly as taboo to them as it is to Mark's pack. Only time would tell if the boy in Mark's arms was attacked by his former lover, and if that were true it would absolutely kill him to know that.
The small man cries out and curls into a ball as Mark holds him close to his bare chest, and the alpha feels his already broken heart break into even smaller pieces. The alpha places his strong jaw against the bleeding brow line of the boy and coos softly in his ear as he feels the man begin to relax into painful sleep. Mark raises his eyes to the cabins of the dead to start to figure out which ones will have bandages to protect the human as he turns into what tried to destroy him.
Mark cradles the injured boy in his strong arms, soft brown eyes searching for supplies to help aid the poor creature. His eyes are barely open, but Mark can still see the vivid blue of his irises. In his half unconscious state he's still trying to fight whomever is holding his body still, but he's far too weak and listless to inflict any damage upon Mark. The alpha finds it inspiring, that even though he's close to death the boy can still put up a fight.
"Hush now, little one. I'm here to help." Mark murmurs, smoothing Jack's hair back with his hand. His calm tone seemed to be enough to settle him while Mark looked for the bandages.
"What's your name?" Mark asks, trying to distract the brunette with light conversation. The boy mumbled that his name is Jack, and the Irish accent that covered his name was such a delight to Mark's ears. The alpha locates the bandages in one of the cabins, taking care to avoid the bodies that littered the floor. This was such a mess, and he knew that the elders would have a field day once they heard about this.
"He asked me my name too," Jack whispered when he sees Mark shuffle back with dressings for his wounds.
"The one who hurt you, Jack?"
The young man nods as he opens up his eyes as much as he can to make out the man who rescued him. His blue gaze hovers over Mark's dark eyes, then his muscular chest and lastly, the alpha's strong arms and sturdy legs.
The alpha is as gentle as a shadow as he cleans Jack’s cuts and deep bites, but the need to ask something more of the boy lingers deep within his heart.
“Do you remember what the creature looked like, Jack? Anything at all?”
Jack inhales the air around him as if the ability to recall memories by scent was already beginning to grow. He closes his eyes tightly and frowns as if recalling a terrifying dream.
“He was a huge wolf, thick black fur and a voice full of barely contained rage. It’s his eyes I remember the most though. Bright violet that glowed as he leapt at me.”
What is left of Mark’s heart is now dust at Jack’s words. His hands tremble as he tries to remain calm enough to make sure the boy’s bandages are tight and secure.
Jack's shirt was all but destroyed in the attack, so the Irishman's pale chest was completely exposed to the alpha. Nate's status as a purebred lycan would only speed up the process of changing Jack into the beast that tried to kill him. The mark over his heart was already starting to appear, and just like Mark feared it was pitch black. Just like Nate's fur.
Mark wondered what the pack would have to say about this. Nate has done a lot of questionable things, but turning a human is definitely a new one. He wouldn't be accepted, and now that Mark thinks about it he'd most likely end up dead before the sun even set. Outsiders were not welcomed easily once a pack has been formed, and the alpha has seen how new wolves are treated amongst the purebreds. It's awful and quite often violent. As Mark finished up dressing Jack's wounds he was alerted to a new type of smell in the air. It wasn't at all like Nate's, but the sweet notes of honey and lilac gave away what subgender the boy would end up becoming. Only omega's carried a sweeter aroma. It's how alphas can easily seek out a mate. Jack's honey rich scent complimented Mark's earthy tones in such a way that could make Mark howl. But now wasn't the time to think about such things.
The alpha shakes his head to get rid of any thoughts except for how to best take care of Jack until he fully turned, but the desire to have more wouldn’t stay pushed back in his mind for very long. Mark places the newly forming omega by a large tree and heads off to look for any type of human food he can find.
Mark is aware that the taste of freshly killed prey will be all that Jack will desire once he finally turns completely, but in the meantime he wants him to try to stay in human form as long as possible. The desire not to shock the boy is important so that the change he’s going through will be less traumatic when the shift finally occurs.
After a small amount of time the alpha returns with some bread and warm cider from one of the furthest cabins. With tender hands Mark helps the boy eat what he’s able to keep down, and tips the cider slowly into his opened mouth.
It is only when the sun beginning to set as the forest turns darker that Mark considers it to be the right time to get Jack back to the sleeping grounds. The cover of night will protect them both from being seen until Mark can come to terms with what his mind keeps telling him is the only way to take care of the young man.
Jack would need a pack, a home, and an alpha. Any lycan that didn't have a stable environment was considered rogue and a danger to both humans and lycans alike. But Mark's pack is very narrow minded when it comes to new members, as they should be. A pack is family, and family looks out for each other. There was really only one option available to Mark, and if he were honest it didn't sound all that bad when he thought about it. But that might have been his hormones working against his brain. A pack won't attack their luna, no matter where they came from. So Mark's option was to either abandon Jack to the wilderness, or take him home and make him apart of his pack. And the alpha's mind was already made up.
The alpha is tentative in his steps, his bare feet avoiding thick vines and naked legs on the look out for sharp bushes at every turn. Jack is bundled up against his chest, warm breath rough and small body shaking in the chill night air.
"Just a little further," Mark mutters as he presses his lips near the other's slightly pointed ear.
The pack should be out by the time the alpha returns to hunt for food. With Mark not there and Nate gone, the normal order would have Tyler taking the lead. As they reached the small clearing right outside of the small cabins, Mark stops and waits. His ears listen for any signs of moving feet and his nose sniffs at the air for the smell of any of the pack.
Jack gives a soft moan in Mark's arms and is softly hushed by the alpha. Once there is silence again, Mark holds on to Jack as tightly as he can and makes a quiet dash towards his cabin.
The boy remains half out of his mind, his body now hot to the touch. His first shift would be a rough ride for both of them. Mark would just have to keep Jack quiet enough as to not alert the pack of what was transpiring. His leadership was already being questioned, and if Tyler ever got it in his mind to challenge Mark he could very easily win over the pack and take his place as leader.
The alpha made it to his cabin rather quickly, avoiding prying eyes as he slipped inside and locked the door behind him. Jack was shivering violently, sweating as heat spread across his pale skin. The shift should happen any minute now, and after it was all said and done Mark would have to be quick in his next course of action. The alpha was anxious, lying Jack down in the center of the bed he shared with the lycan that did this to the poor boy. Pained whines and growls poured from his opened mouth, his bones loudly popping as they shifted underneath his mottled skin. Long nails sprouted from his finger tips, fire shooting though his veins and burning him from the inside out. Mark paced by the side of the bed, casting glances at the front door as he tried in vain to quiet the boy down.
Jack clawed at the sheets, arching his back like a bow as pain overtook him. The full moon was practically pulling the wolf out of him, ripping away his fleshy exterior to reveal the stunning omega underneath. But just as quickly as the change began, it suddenly stopped and Jack's body fell limply against the mattress. Mark froze, eyeing the new omega warily. He could still hear a heartbeat, which meant that Jack ultimately survived the shift. But his body remained in human form.
The dark brown eyes of the alpha remain puzzled at the gasping man in the middle of his bed. The first thought is that he is still too weak to deal with the immense pain involved in the first transformation. Regardless though, Jack was still hanging on to life, his chest rising and falling with deep breaths and shaking limbs. He has earned what the alpha needed to do next to protect him.
With steady steps Mark crawls onto the bed next to the man, pushing his sweaty brown hair away from his brow. The boy was whimpering softly, but leans into the strong touch of the man above him.
Mark places his nose to Jack's neck and inhales deeply until he the smell of sweet honey invades his nostrils. Then a tongue gently passes over his scent gland just to make sure. The young man shudders at the warm feeling of Mark’s mouth on his skin.
“Lay still now, little one,” the alpha whispers. “I promise to do everything I can to be a worthy mate to you.”
Mark shifts his teeth a bit, sharp canines replacing his blunt human teeth as his jaw widens. Jack weakly lifts his hand up, thin fingers tangling into the alpha's black locks. One brief moment of pain and they'd be together forever. Mark felt terrible for taking this choice away from Jack, but it was the only option he could see that kept the boy safe. The alpha bit down on Jack's scent gland, a burst of honey-like sweetness mixed with copper flooding his mouth as Jack arched his back up into Mark's bare chest. Their pupils dilated, blinding them both as strong waves of intense euphoria washed over them. The mating bite was only a second or two long, but to them it felt like an eternity.
Instinct took over in place of common sense, and as Mark pulled away to lick his lips he felt the sharp bite of Jack's canines pierce the skin of his neck. The boy didn't even know what he was doing or why, but his body just seemed to know what to do next to seal the bond between alpha and omega. Normally mating is a very intimate act that leads to mind blowing sex and often a different kind of mating. But Mark had to hold himself back from tearing into the weak omega sprawled out on his bed. Mating didn't mean the same thing as consent, and Jack never gave that to Mark. They both would want to engage in physical intimacy for a while after the bond has been created, but Mark wouldn't lay a finger on Jack unless he knew for a fact that it was what Jack wanted.
The alpha begins to get off of the bed when Jack grabs at his arm with firm fingers, holding him still. Mark’s warm chocolate eyes dart to the face of his new Luna, his heart racing as the omega struggles to speak.
“A-alpha, please don’t leave me here,” the man mutters, his blue eyes sparkling with fresh tears. “I need you..”
Mark sighs at the words and slides under the covers, his arms reaching around the smaller man and pulling him close. The alpha licks at the bite as Jack relaxes into slumber, with the fact that he’s done the right thing clear in his mind. Now he will need to find a way to convince this to his pack.
It was a few hours later when Jack's weary eyes finally fluttered open. The strain of mating and going through both a lycan attack and a failed shift practically ran his body into the ground. But during his deep sleep the wounds on his neck and back were nothing more than faint pink scars that decorated his porcelain skin. Of course he didn't know that yet. His blue eyes were still blurry with sleep, slowly focusing until the surrounding environment was crystal clear. But that also let him see the source of all that warmth that covered his body like a thick blanket. He wasn't in his cabin, warm in his own bed. There was a rather large Eurasian man holding him close while he slept. His tan skin was marked with old and new scars alike, his features relaxed and blissful as sweet dreams held him under a deep sleep's spell.
The first thing to pop into Jack's mind was a drunken one night stand, since his body ached like hell and his memory was far too fuzzy to clearly remember meeting this man. But they must have slept together, right? What other explanation could there be? A pit settled in his stomach as he spotted the dried blood on the sheets, and the bite mark on the man's neck. With trembling hands Jack reached up to touch the similar mark that adorned his own pale neck. And then he began to panic.
The sudden movement alerts the alpha beside him, and Mark opens his dark eyes. He blinks for a minute, his brown gaze meeting with confused blue. The omega pulls away from the strong arms of the other man, realizing too late that there’s a sturdy wall in his path until his back hits it with a dull thud.
“How’s your neck,” Mark asks gently as he sits up in the bed and watches the frightened man.
“That’s not the first question I was expecting,” Jack admits, his eyes moving from the other man to the rest of the cabin, and especially towards the cabin door.
“Lets start with where the fuck I am,” the omega continues, “and how the fuck I got here?”
Mark gives a short sigh as he gets out of the bed and walks over to the table to grab a small mirror. He misses the look of shock on Jack’s face as he watches Mark walk around the cabin, so casual in his nudity.
The Irishman averts his gaze, sighing in relief once he notices that he still has his pants on. So maybe nothing that intimate actually happened last night? He knows in the back of his mind that Mark is a familiar face, but he doesn't recall all that much about him. Not yet at least. Sometimes the mind can block out memories to try and protect us, and that seems like something Jack might be experiencing at the moment. But it all comes flooding back to him once Mark hands him the mirror and gestures to their matching bites.
"Please try to understand that I did what I felt was necessary to keep you safe. My pack isn't fond of outsiders, but they won't harm their Luna, no matter who they are. Mating you was the only way, Jack. And no, before you ask, I didn't touch you like that." Mark murmured, taking a seat on the side of the bed next to Jack while the boy processed all this new information. Mating, packs, talks of Jack being a Luna. Mark was speaking like a wolf, and suddenly the answer clicked inside his head. Mark wasn't an ordinary man. He was a lycan, and by the sound of it a very strong one at that.
“Why did you need to keep me safe?” Jack asks as he places the mirror back into the lycan’s hand. “Did you know the wolf who attacked me? Was he a friend or something?”
The alpha slowly sighs as he puts the mirror down next to him, his dark brown eyes fighting back burning tears.
“Something like that,” Mark replies, his gaze lingering on the pillow next to his own, where the beta once laid his head. “He was someone I deeply loved, and in his pain for what I didn’t do, he made your little village suffer."
Jack tries to connect the dots in his foggy head. Those violet eyes glowing in the back of his mind still makes his bones feel ice cold. That killing machine once slept with this seemingly kind hearted man? It was hard to believe.
"So, you're the reason I almost died? Why my friends and family are all rotting out there like animals!?" Jack snapped, his anger outweighing any other emotion. He remembered the pure terror that rushed through his veins when he saw what that monster did, and he felt it even now. Whatever Mark did or didn't do was enough to cause Nate to snap like that, and because of that Jack's village is gone and he's no longer even a part of that species anymore. Mark narrowed his eyes, swallowing down the sudden burst of negative emotions so he wouldn't frighten the poor boy. Anger and grief are understandable emotions that Jack should be feeling, but Mark wasn't about to take all the blame for something Nate did.
"Nathan is his own person, driven by his own morals. What he did was unthinkable, but I in no way caused what transpired last night." Mark growled, "We have been at peace with the humans for years, but Nathan was always bitter towards them. It would have happened regardless."
“Even though that might be the case,” Jack snaps, his voice trembling in his throat, “You still had a choice when it came to what happened to me. Now I’m stuck here with you as my mate, or whatever the fuck I’m supposed to be now. I want to hate you but for some reason I can’t do it. I’m drawn to you in a way I don’t understand.”
“That’s due to us mating,” Mark mutters as he gets up off of the bed again. “If you will allow us time it will get better, Jack.”
The omega let’s out a hollow laugh that echoes bitterly in the cabin. Mark is insane to think that anything will get better. Jack never asked for this, and even if the desire to survive the bite was clearly what he wanted, if the alpha had any mercy he would have let him die that night.
“I don’t want to be here,” Jack mumbles. “I want to go home.”
Mark walks towards the small table and sits down, his brown eyes looking sadly at the young man.
“I’m sorry Jack, but from this night on, this is your home.”
The room grew deafeningly silent, and Mark thought that it would suffocate him before Jack finally spoke once again. He didn't expect the boy to just openly accept this new reality and move on as if nothing happened, but he did hope that eventually Jack would come around and they could start to at least act like they were mates. He couldn't deny that his instincts were going crazy with want, and he honestly didn't know how much longer he'd be able to hold off before the beast came out to claim Jack's body.
"Why me? You should have just left me in that cave to die, but you didn't. Now I'm just some fuck toy for you to use after a hunt."
Mark sighed, fingers pressing into his temples. This boy had no idea what mating entailed, or what omegas actually did for their alpha. Contrary to popular belief an omega's worth is not directly tied to whether or not they're mated or carrying pups. They might be the lowest ranking wolf in the pack but the group's survival is dependent upon them. And Jack's role as their Luna was the most important role there was besides the one Mark held. The Luna is the pack's den mother and mentor. They teach young pups how to hunt and assist their alpha with hard decisions. So for Mark to place Jack in that role without a second thought was a pretty big deal.
The alpha growls softly as he approaches the young man. His handsome face looking for the first time, dangerous and angry. “Please don’t insult what you are.” Mark says, his tone incredibly firm. “When you do you bare your teeth to all the omegas who have carried the title of Luna. Your role is as my second, my right side, and the heartbeats to my breath. You are the whisper in my ear when the weight of my crown gets too heavy.”
Jack’s eyes become wider as the alpha reaches him, and places a hand on his shoulder. The young man’s pull towards Mark's power and strength makes him feel like his blood was rushing to his head.
“You’re now my light in the darkness,” the alpha continues, his soft brown eyes looking into the omega's memorized blue. “You’re my mate, and my Luna. At least you will be, when you are ready.”
Those deep words leave Jack struggling to find the proper thing to say, his ignorance to what he is now sends painful chills down his spine.
“I’m sorry,” he whispers, still staring into his alpha’s eyes. “I didn’t know”
“You didn’t ask,” Mark sighs as he removes his hand from the omega’s slender shoulder, his gaze shifting towards the open cabin window.
Jack hears the sounds of soft talking and gentle footsteps.The pack is returning to the sleeping grounds after the hunt. Mark knows he can't avoid this, but he feels it's too soon to let the pack meet their new Luna. Jack doesn't yet understand what is required of him, or pretty much anything that deals with his new role as a lycan. The boy has yet to shift and Mark's inner wolf is begging to see this stunning omega in all his glory. But is he ready?
Mark crosses his arms, hard eyes set on Jack as he sat on the bed.
"Stand up." Mark commands, and Jack hates that a part of him can't disobey this man. He could, but it's like he needs to please the alpha with his obedience. Jack slowly shuffles off the bed, standing beside it silently. Mark smirks at the boy's obedience but says nothing about it as he continues on.
"Remove your pants." The alpha gestures to the sash around Jack's waist, holding up his trousers that were badly torn in the attack. The boy's eyes went wide, a blush covering his hot cheeks as he knit his brows together in confusion. Any and all willpower he could muster to defy his alpha was quickly gathered, a quiet growl bubbling up from his chest at the request.
"Why? So you can claim me or some shit? I am not some prize to be won!"
Mark cocked his head, remaining calm despite his mate's tone.
"No, it's so you can shift. Not everything is about sex, Jack. Your clothing will be ruined beyond repair if you keep them on."
Jack bites his bottom lip as he turns away from the alpha so that he can have at least the smallest illusion of privacy as he begins to disrobe from the front. Mark moves over to the window and narrows his eyes to see how far away the others were now. In front of the cabin he sees the dark shape of Tyler trotting with Felix close to his left side. The two seem deep in conversation and barely are noticing anything but their own words to each other. Good. That buys him some time.
Then with a soft noise of fabric hitting the cabin floor, the alpha turns back to see Jack facing him. The omega’s face is scarlet as he stands naked in front of his alpha, his hands slightly covering his privates as he looks at Mark.
“Ok,” Jack says, nude and embarrassed like hell, a slight bite is in his voice. “I’m undressed. Now what?”
Mark rolls his eyes, knowing that modesty is a human trait. Jack must be thinking a thousand different thoughts right now, and the alpha could guess that the majority of them revolved around their shared nudity. The Eurasian wolf steps forward, keeping his eyes on Jack's face as he closed the distance between them. The boy's heart was pounding like a drum, short and shallow breaths passing by his quivering lips. Mark's fingers curled around Jack's, lifting his hands away from his groin and up towards his chest with only slight resistance from the Irishman.
"Close your eyes. I need you to trust that I won't harm you, Jack. Can you do that?" Mark murmured, his warm breath ghosting against Jack's cheeks. Could he trust Mark like this? He was about to find out. The omega nodded, his blue eyes slipping shut. He heard the alpha hum in approval, his grip loosening around Jack's hands.
"Good. As an alpha I need to have your trust in order to care for you and the pack. Your trust is precious to me, and you can be certain that I'll never abuse it."
Jack nods but remains silent, awaiting Mark's next instruction. The alpha tells him to visualize fire in his heart, swirling inside his chest like hot magma. It's not a hard thing to do, since an odd tingling heat is ever present in the back of his mind. He can feel it flowing, circling his chest slowly.
"Good. Now push the fire away from your heart. Don't stop until you're completely consumed by its heat." The alpha instructed, watching Jack very closely to see what his next move would be. The boy took a deep breath, his mind visualizing the liquid fire exploding inside his chest. Heat rushed through his veins, wrapping him up in its sweet warmth. Jack felt the air leave his lungs as he hit the floor, Mark stepping back to marvel at the sight before him. The boy was on all fours, panting as heat and pain consumed him. He tried to claw at the floorboards to better ground himself in reality, but instead of ten fingers and toes Jack opened his eyes to see four large stark white paws resting against the ground.
The omega pants, his senses quickly realizing that his mouth is longer, and his ears are surrounded by muscles that now allow them more movement than ever before. Jack turns his head slowly and looks up to meet the alpha's gaze, confused as to why Mark is staring at him from above.
"What's wrong?" Jack asks, his heart racing, terrified that Mark is angry that he didn't follow his instructions exactly. The alpha's deep brown eyes scan Jack's lycan form. The omega is smaller than Mark, but he's slim and agile like an omega is supposed to be. His fur is as dazzling white as new fallen snow, and his large eyes are a breathtaking shade of green fire. He's stunning.
"Nothing's wrong," Mark says, his voice barely over a whisper. "Far from it, in fact. You're beautiful, Jack."
The white wolf huffs, ducking his head to avoid Mark's piercing gaze. Jack is overloaded with stimuli from every direction, from his perfectly precise hearing to his advanced sense of smell that could pick up the hint of copper in the air from the pack's recent kill. Even his vision was enhanced, letting him see exceptionally well in the dark. Jack was made to hunt and kill the creatures of the forest, and already his mouth was salivating at the thought of fresh blood on his tongue. The full body mirror on the wall catches his eye, and Jack can see how fierce he looks for the first time.
"Holy shit.." He breathes, showing his teeth as he takes in his new form. It only takes Mark a second to shift, the large black wolf gazing into the mirror along side of his mate. Those scarlet eyes are terrifying, but Jack isn't afraid. He's mesmerized.
"You are beautiful, Jack. So strong and fierce, a true marvel to behold." Mark purrs, bumping his nose on Jack's furry cheek. He wants to run, to stretch his legs and feel the cold wind rush through his fur. It's an all consuming need. An itch he has to scratch.
"Mark, I should be scared out of my mind, but seeing myself like this isn't as odd as I thought it would be. Why is that?" The omega asks, and Mark isn't quite sure how to answer that question. Perhaps Jack is a bit numb to what's happening right now. He's been thrown into this situation with nothing to hold on to except for Mark himself. Anyone else would have lost their mind with panic, but Jack is surprisingly calm in this moment.
"I'm not sure, but perhaps a morning run would help you clear your mind? I can practically hear your inner wolf crying out for it."
The bright green eyes of the omega look suddenly excited as he shifts his gaze over to front door of the cabin, and then back towards the alpha. His heart is already beating so fast against his ribs that it almost hurts standing so still.
"You mean right now?" Jack asks, his Irish accent tinged with disbelief.
Mark chuckles softly as he swishes his dark tail and moves towards the back window of the little cabin, and the omega watches the sturdy hunches of the alpha's hind legs as he passes him to sit.
"Yes, I mean right now," Mark confirms. "If you think you're up for it. Just follow me and try to stay close for now."
Jack hesitates as he moves towards the other lycan, his desire and fear fighting each other inside his mind.
"Unless you're too scared," Mark suggests, the slightest air of daring in his tone. Jack feels the fur on his thick neck bristle at the idea, even though there is truth in the statement. He may be small and still getting used to his paws, but to call him scared?
"I'm not afraid of the forest, or anything in it." Jack grumbles. "I've spent most of my life among the trees."
Mark nods at the white wolf's words, and he stands up to face the morning sun through the open back window.
"Then let's see what you're made of omega. Catch me, if you can!"
Then before Jack could register what the larger wolf was doing he was already jumping out of the window, his large feet hitting the wet grass on the other side, and beginning to run. Jack gave a small squeak in spite of himself, and followed the alpha's lead.
Jack lands much harder than he means to, but he recovers quickly. Mark is already at least twenty feet away and gathering speed. The Irishman pushes off on his back legs and surges forward, the wind already catching his fur in the cool morning breeze.
He is shocked at how naturally he sees tree roots and fallen branches, and leaps over them as easily as taking a breath. Mark turns this head to make sure that Jack is behind him, a small smile showing at the way he is bounding through the undergrowth. It's as if Jack is an ivory dolphin swimming through a forest green ocean. The omega giggles as he reaches Mark's right side.
"This feels so fucking good. It's like a breath of fresh air, clearing my mind." Jack said, keeping up his quick pace next to Mark. There's a new feeling surging through them both, but it's light and playful. Jack is far too focused on dodging trees to counter the sudden attack from Mark, who's larger body knocks into Jack's with the force of a freight train. The alpha's instincts are getting the better of him, and he wants to play with his new mate. Mark is quick to pin the omega on his back, growling playfully as he nips at his neck. Jack doesn't seem all that put off by Mark's actions, his slender body kicking and wiggling to try and escape the alpha's clutches. There's laughter in the air, and for the first time in a long time Mark feels like a pup again. The weight of his crown can break him down, aging him rapidly until all that's left is a pile of dry bones. But right now he's not concerned about anything besides having fun, and it makes his heart soar.
Jack manages to slip out from under the alpha, taking off at lightning speed and daring his mate to try that again. Mark is all too willing to play this little game, weaving through thick trees as fast as his paws can take him. He flanks to the left, pouncing on Jack and taking him down to the forest floor. Jack's laughter was infectious, entrancing Mark with it's wonderful sound. He's lost in It, completely missing the foreign footsteps that are closing in on him until the wolf is already there.
"Mark? Who is this?"
Jack turns his head towards the gruff voice and there looms a dark brown wolf with electric blue eyes. His gaze darts from Mark, then down at the white one on the ground, and then back into the blood red eyes of the other alpha again.
The rest of the pack were slowly appearing behind Tyler’s large body, some faces curious, and a couple clearly frightened of what their leader was doing frolicking with some stranger so close to their home.
Mark leans in to Jack’s ear, his voice clear and strong.
“Get up very slowly, and say nothing until either I or the wolf directly in front of you tells you to speak. Do you understand, Jack?”
“Yes,” the omega answers, his tone soft and obedient. Mark backs off slowly, letting Jack roll onto his stomach and rise to his feet. All eyes are on him, staring at the white wolf with curiosity.
"I was hoping I could do this a bit differently, but this omega is Jack, your Luna." Mark responds, eyes fixed on Tyler. Jack's heart was beating out of his chest, his scent changing to reflect his emotional state. Tyler cocked his head, giving Mark an unreadable expression.
"Luna? I don't recall any courting, or really any indication that you were seeing this..outsider. What about Nathan? Have you discussed this with him? I don't want a fight brought to our grounds, Mark."
“Nathan is no longer a part of the pack, or my heart. As far as courting Jack goes, that’s a more complicated conversation. One I would prefer to have with just the three of us, Tyler.”
The other alpha gives a loud sniff as he lowers his ears. The rest of the pack had just as much of a right as himself for an explanation of what their head alpha was bringing into their world, and especially his bed.
“I think that it’s about time that secrets end, Mark.” Tyler says, his voice louder so that the others would hear him clearly. “If this wolf is to be our Luna, then we should all get to know him in the open air.”
Tyler turns his head to the other wolves who now are looking even more suspicious. Only the bushy tail of the only other omega in the group, Ethan, wags excitedly for the news of a fellow omega joining the pack.
“I think that the first thing that we should all see is how our Luna looks when he's not covered in his pretty white fur.” Tyler continues, now completely speaking to the pack behind him. “Do we agree?”
The lycans behind Tyler gave a collective sound of agreement, and Mark's worst fear was coming to pass. They would see the mark on his chest and mating bite on his neck. There was no way around it.
Mark turned his head to face Jack, the boy looking confused as his eyes darted around the area. He had no idea how to shift back into human form, and his hesitancy to do so wasn't making things any better. Tyler huffed, narrowing his eyes at the white wolf before him.
"Now, omega!" The alpha snapped, widening his stance just in case things took a nasty turn. The wolves behind him were getting restless, yipping to spur Tyler on. There'd be a fight amongst them before long, and Mark needed to diffuse the situation and fast. Jack's eyes shifted toward Mark, silently pleading for advice. The alpha whispered for him to pull the fire back towards his heart, and that he should feel cold once the shift was done correctly. Jack whined but did as he was told, closing his eyes to try and visualise an implosion of frigid air. This part of the change was actually difficult, and by the time Jack began to feel the cold wind outside the damage had already been done. The pack was rowdy and wild, snapping and growling at Jack to show himself. The boy sucked in a deep breath, pulling back the heat of his fur like a flash freeze, until all that remained was a skinny man kneeling on the ground before them.
Jack could feel Mark move closer to him, his black fur brushing against his cold skin. The omega had hoped that shifting back would have calmed down the pack, and whomever this Tyler is, but if anything, the barks of rage seem even louder in his ears.
“A new wolf?” Tyler asks, his tone almost startled as his dazzling blue eyes look at the black paw print on the young man’s chest. “Explain yourself, Mark.”
“Jack was attacked in the forest,” the alpha begins, his voice loud enough to carry over to the others, who despite the desire to see the two alphas battle, quiet down to listen.
“This omega was strong and brave enough to survive and be turned. He earned my respect that night, and the honor of our pack’s protection. He is now not only part of our family, but also my mate. I’m sure that your sharp eyes have seen the bite on his neck. I hope that you all will welcome Jack with open arms and open hearts.”
There are whispered murmurs between the pack, and Jack shivers slightly from the cold wind. Mark moves even closer to the boy, and the omega wraps his slender arms around his alpha’s thick neck. He feels instantly warmer.
“And what about the elephant in the room,” Tyler growls, and the whispers of the others stop to listen again.
“That color on his chest looks remarkably like your own fur, Mark. Should we assume that the attack on the boy was from you?”
Mark growled viciously, making the hairs on Jack's neck stand on end. The boy let him go, scooting back to give them some space. He's seen enough to know that a fight between alphas was something he didn't want to be a part of.
"Is that a challenge?!" Mark barked out, his thin black lips pulled back to reveal his sharp teeth. The others backed away but remained close, moving around to circle Jack as Tyler closed in on Mark.
The alpha's leadership has been in question for years, but this is the straw that broke the camel's back. Tyler was no longer submitting to his alpha, and it seemed the others were supporting him as lead alpha now that Mark was charged with a terrible crime.
"It's about time someone called you out on your shit, Mark. You're putting us all at risk! Bedding that fucking psychopath and now this?! You've lost your way, and I think it's time I stepped in to fix what you've destroyed." Tyler growled, venom dripping from his tongue. Mark held his ground, lowering his stance to that of pure aggression. If Tyler thinks he can defeat Mark and possibly harm Jack then he's horribly mistaken. Mark was bigger and stronger than his challenger, but Tyler was quick on his feet and smart as a whip. It wouldn't be an easy win for either wolf.
"I accept your challenge."
The silence is chilling as the two alphas face each other, their shoulders squared up as both bare sharp teeth and ready claws. They dare each other to make the first move. Mark has no idea if this will be a fight to the death, but he will do whatever it takes to protect Jack, even if it means killing his closest friend.
Tyler finally springs forward, his mouth open to bite at the other alpha’s neck. Mark jumps out of the way just in time, and Tyler lands hard in the dirt. Now it’s the black wolf’s turn to strike and he slams hard into the other wolf’s side.
Tyler roars at the sharp pain as Mark’s jaws clamp down on the softer skin of his underbelly. It is clear that Mark is trying to stop the fight quickly, but Tyler isn’t going to lay down like a puppy that easily.
The brown wolf recovered quickly, using his hind legs to kick and scratch at Mark's soft underbelly. The cuts were enough to stun Mark so that Tyler could wiggle free, suddenly retaliating with a harsh bite to the scruff of Mark's neck. The alpha yelped, shaking Tyler loose and clawing at his eyes. The time for diplomacy was over. So if Tyler wouldn't listen to reason and logic, he'd put him in his place with brute strength.
The two fought each other valiantly, delivering blows and bites that littered the ground below with fur and blood. The pack kept Jack surrounded, drowning out his cries with their howls and cheers. But every battle needs a victor, and with brute force and a cunning mind Tyler ended up pinned against the ground, Mark's teeth softly closed around his throat. He could very easily kill Tyler, but he chose to let him live for now. Next time would be a very different outcome.
Blood stains the forest floor with angry droplets as both alphas move away from each other to lick their wounds. The pack spreads apart enough for Jack to race over to Mark's side and help him as best he can. His hands move quickly to check the cuts and tears in the wolf’s tough skin, and his eyes scanning for places that need the most attention. The omega feels Mark’s muscles tremble slightly from the battles, his breathing strained.
“You could have been killed,” the omega whispers, his voice sounding terrified. “There was no need to start a fucking war over me.”
Mark sighs as his scarlet eyes look up at the frightened omega, and for the first time since they mated, the alpha sees genuine compassion for him in those bright blue eyes.
“You’re my Luna,” Mark says, as he nuzzles Jack’s slender hand with his nose. “For you I would fight a thousand battles.”
That declaration strikes a part of Jack that he doesn't quite understand. He feels his heart clench at Mark's words, but his mind chooses to disregard them. He just met Mark. He knows little to nothing about him, and yet they're tied together for life. It all feels like too much. The fighting, the odd mannerisms that these people possess. If Jack were honest with Mark he would tell him how inexperienced he is when it comes to being someone's mate, human or not. He's only ever loved one person in his short life, and Signe is back home in Ireland happily married with a baby on the way. Good things don't happen for Jack. The attack and subsequent mating to a strange lycan is proof enough of that. So the boy remains silent as Tyler backs away, clearly angry at his loss.
"Anyone else care to try that?" Mark barked, and the lycans hung their head low, bowing to their alpha. If Tyler couldn't take Mark down then none of them could. Of course they could stage a coo and gang up on the both of them, tear them to pieces and crown Tyler that way. But that wasn't respectable and the elders wouldn't see that as a victory in combat. Only king on challenger was permissible for a challenge to the throne, and even Tyler wouldn't stoop that low to get what he wants. Mark won fair and square. He just wasn't happy about it.
"Good. Let's keep it that way. Jack is and will always be a member of this pack, as your Luna. I expect nothing but respect and kindness towards him. And for those that are wondering, I did not attack him. I found him half dead in a village not far from here, where a lycan slaughtered thirty plus people in their sleep."
The other wolves, including Tyler look stunned at this information. Felix and Ethan seem especially unsettled, their heads low in soft conversation with each other. Mark turns away and begins walking back towards the sleeping grounds. Jack frowns as he see the alphas steps, the weight on his right back leg more carefully placed than the others.
In moments Jack is covered in white fur again as he changes and catches up to Mark in just a few strides, his stunning green eyes connecting with the narrowed crimson on the the alpha.
“You’ve been hurt,” the omega says softly when they are safely away from the others. “Let me help you when we get back.”
“I’ll be fine,” Mark mutters, “I just need a bit of rest is all. There is no need to worry about - “
“If I’m your Luna,” Jack interrupts, though his tone is still quiet. “Then let me be there for you. Please?”
Mark huffed but nodded. If Jack wanted to fulfill his role as Mark's second then this would be a good place to start. The alpha's wounds were extensive, but they'd heal before the sun set. Jack was only doing this to pacify his need to care for his mate. It's a very human thing to do, but Mark wasn't complaining. This was just a small step in the right direction for them.
The alpha made it back towards the cabin with Jack hot on his heels. The concept of mating was still forign to Jack, but he figured that it was no different than a husband would treat his significant other. And of course to make things even more difficult the boy has virtually no experience with males in a romantic setting. He's been raised to court and wed a woman, not a man. In human society homosexuality was still taboo, so the thought of Jack sleeping with a man like Mark was a little intimidating. But the want and need to be close and intimate was definitely there. He just chose not to acknowledge it right now.
Jack watches as the alpha shifts smoothly back into a man as they reach the front door, turning the doorknob to let them both inside. Mark is hobbling badly now that he is on only two legs, and his face winces as he makes it to the bed to sit down.
Jack changes back more slowly, still needing to learn how deal with the cold feeling of his human form again. Was he getting used to being a wolf already?
Mark groans as he lays down more comfortably on the bed. His right leg covered with deep cuts and bruises. The omega moves close to him after finding some soft cloth near the kitchen area, and sits down beside him.
“Where does it hurt the most?” Jack asks, his blue eyes trying not to focus on anything but Mark’s battered leg. Mark told his mate that pretty much everything felt the same intense throbbing, but that he was already starting to heal. Jack rolled his eyes, scoffing as he rose up to fetch a bowl of warm water and a rag he could use to clean the alpha's body up a bit. He was caked with blood that had already trickled to a stop, staining the sheets with its dark maroon pigment.
The omega knelt down, setting the bowl on the floor next to his knees as he began to wipe Mark down. And just like he said his wounds were already starting to close up and scar over. Some of the deeper puncture wounds would take a bit longer to heal, but he'd be fine in due time. Jack was successful in removing the dried blood from Mark's skin, patting him dry with a separate cloth to make him more comfortable. He still felt the need to bandage Mark's leg, which he did against his alpha's wishes. He called it a waste of supplies, and that had Jack rolling his eyes so hard they could have rolled right out of his head. Alphas were stubborn creatures, very head strong and masculine. It was a bit much for Jack, but he decided not to dwell too much on that. As much of a pain in the ass as Mark was, he had to admit that he was a fine specimen of man. That tan skin lined with scars was calling to him, begging to be touched by pale hands.
Mark just watched him curiously to see what he would do. Jack seemed to be waging a war inside his head, his hands clenching to keep them from sliding across that smooth expanse of muscled alpha. It didn't help that Mark was buck naked, splayed out like helpless prey to Jack's ministrations. A sharp inhale of breath from the man below him let the omega know that his attempts at restraint had miserably failed, blue eyes shifting down to see a pale hand resting on Mark's abdomen, right above the soft curls that tried to hide his manhood.
“You don’t have to do anything that you’re not ready for Jack,” Mark insists, his voice kind and soft.
The warm tone of Mark's words cause his blue eyes to shift up to the deep dark gaze of the alpha. This moment is radiating with a tension that seems familiar to Jack, but different because the jawline he considers to kiss is stronger. The mouth...larger.
Teeth sink into the omega’s bottom lip as he moves closer, the need to satisfy the urge of gentle curiosity surging through every pore of his skin. Mark sits as still as possible while the young man inches closer to him, his own heart beating fast against his chest.
“I just need to try,” Jack whispers, more to himself than to the man in front of him. “To see how it feels.”
Mark remained still against the bed, dark eyes following the hand that was now sliding up his chest to rest against the side of his neck. Jack's hands were shaking, his warm breath ghosting against Mark's chin as he moved a little closer. What was he even doing? He's never kissed a man before, and yet here he is, letting his instincts guide him while his mind kicked and screamed. A pale thigh rose up to rest on the opposite side of Mark's hips, and now the omega was straddling his mate's waist, throwing caution to the wind as he gave in to the intense internal pressure. Mark's eyes slipped shut, full lips parted slightly as Jack's mouth gently molded against his. The first kiss is always awkward, but once their lips separated and the two opened their eyes again it was much easier to repeat the action.
Jack pressed his lips to Mark's once more, kissing him a bit harder this time. It was like an explosion of warmth in his belly, causing his heart to skip and stutter. The boy's hands moved up to cup his mate's face, moving their lips together seamlessly now. It felt foreign yet completely natural at the same time, like breathing in air from some strange place. As the kiss became much more heated the boy decided to let his instincts take the reigns completely. His hips moved against Mark's, grinding down on his mate in a dirty circle. A deep growl bubbled up from Mark's chest, his teeth sinking down into Jack's bottom lip as he gripped onto those curvy hips.
Strong hands dig deeper into his plump bottom as the omega sighs, the kiss turning into something more. Jack is lost in the alpha’s teeth and tongue, mind slipping away at the feeling of the man underneath him. Mark is the one who moans as he painfully pulls away from the omega, his body lurching with desire. He's terrified of pushing the new wolf too quickly.
“J-Jack...” The alpha stutters as he catches hold of his senses. “We need to stop. This is too much too soon for you. We need more time for you to get used to all of this.”
The disappointment in his blue eyes almost crushes Mark as their foreheads meet, and they inhale the same heated air as one.
“Ok,” Jack whispers softly. “That was more powerful than I ever imagined a kiss could ever be. I’m so confused about so much now...but not about...”
The omega leans in again, but Mark is just able to stop their mouths melting into each other for a third time. Jack sighs sadly, but nods that he understands. Mark is only trying to protect him.
The atmosphere has a thick tension built up around the two as Jack moved to sit beside Mark. It's like the humidity that comes before a storm. Mark sits up on his elbows, trying to read the enigma that is Jack. He seems so torn all the time, fighting against himself to keep what's left of his old life alive. Mark brings with him an uncomfortable change, and he's not sure how to deal with this. In the span of twenty-four hours he was attacked by a lycan, bitten and left to die in some cave. Then found and mated by the ex lover of said lycan, and turned into a wolf hybrid. And apparently he was now into men. What an exhausting day.
"Jack? You can talk to me, you know. I'm aware that this is a lot to take in. It's why I stopped when I did. Please don't bottle things up." Mark gently murmured, keeping his hands against the bed to give Jack some space.
The omega laughs at what Mark just said. A lot to take in was right. Now that the moment has passed between the two of them, his mind is racing again with what he’s supposed to be, and how he is going to live this new life.
“My chest burns,” Jack groans as he rubs his palm near the center of his rib cage. “Is that a normal thing?”
Mark lifts up his hand slowly, and after waiting for Jack to nod that it’s ok, he places his palm on the same spot that the omega’s hand was moments before.
“Your soul is conflicted, Jack. It happens a lot with new wolves like yourself. The burning is your new self fighting with your old life. It should get better with time, and learning to trust what you are now.”
"And..what if I don't want this life? What if I just want to be myself again?" Jack asks, pain deeply woven into his voice. He didn't mean it as an insult to all lycans, and he damn well didn't want to hurt Mark, but he was much more suited to life in the village. Not this. Mark sighed, moving his hand down to grab Jack's. He gave the omega a reassuring squeeze, letting him know that he meant well when he said this.
"If you leave there will be pain, deep immeasurable hurt that nothing can soothe. A bond between mates isn't meant to be severed. Death is the only exception. For as long as my heart beats along side yours, you'll feel me."
Jack cringed, feeling trapped in a beautiful prison that was Mark's heart. There really was no easy way out of this, was there?
“So there’s no way out of this,” Jack whispers, his hand still inside of Mark’s strong grip. “This is really where I’m supposed to be now, isn’t it?”
Mark releases his mate's hand from his own and reaches up to the omega’s pale face. Jack leans into the warm touch like he needs it more than anything else in this world.
“Please don’t see this as a punishment,” the alpha says, his deep voice calm and hopeful. “Just give it time. Give us time. I promise that I will do what I can to make this transition as smooth as possible. Today was rough, but the sun will rise again, even brighter.”
Jack wants so badly to believe him, and the feelings from those kisses felt so incredibly real. Like they truly belonged together. Even Mark’s scent was causing his body to yearn to be closer to him, to continue where they left off until they both were howling under the full moon as they made love.
The omega turns and nuzzles into Mark’s large chest, and feels large arms holding him close. The alpha’s black paw print is close to Jack’s lips, and he kisses it softly and Mark rubs the slender back of his Luna. The two lie in each other's arms, surrounded by comfortable silence. It feels right to be skin to skin, to have nothing between them. Jack had all but forgotten about his own nudity, too lost in the warmth Mark was wrapping him up in.
Minutes turned to hours, and before Jack knew it he was nodding off. Mark was quietly sleeping off his injuries, getting ready for the hunt that came with the setting sun. His steady heartbeat was like a lullaby, pulling Jack down into a sweet slumber. The omega was content in this moment, drinking up the affection that came with Mark's gentle cuddles. Who knew that a wolf as big and scary as him could act like such a gentle giant around Jack.
The boy closed his eyes, a sleepy smile on his face. All he could think about was Mark and the words he had said. They rang in his ears like bells, drowning out everything else.
Forever is a very long time to be with someone. But forever may not be long enough for this love. Jack was fighting against his feelings, trying to find even an ounce of imperfection in the way his mate treated him. He wanted a reason to leave, but Mark was as loyal and considerate as a good mate should be. He couldn't leave, and by the sound of it he wouldn't be able to even if he did.
The rumble of the alpha's snores pull Jack in like waves of relaxing warmth and he sinks further into the thoughts of this thing called "forever". Maybe there is something inside him that can make this work, to find a new home in the bed of this loving stranger.
Yet, there is a chill that runs down Jack's narrow spine that has dark fur, and a rage barely contained behind vivid violet eyes. That wolf that caused so much pain in his body, and to his new mate's heart was still out there. Still violent. Still waiting to strike again.
Warm breath billows in front of a dark wolf's maw, his violet eyes flicking up to the bright moonlight filtering down over him. The second village he's come across has been wiped out, leaving nothing and no one behind. Nate is proudly licking the blood from his fur, staying in lycan form to release the animal within. He doesn't feel right walking around in a human's skin, but he will shift if he has to. Like when the young ones hid under the floorboards to try and escape his judgement. They didn't think that wolves could sprout fingers to peel away the protection they so desperatly needed. It was pathetic to think that they could outsmart him. He would search every crevice on this earth just to find every last human and snuff them out.
Nate's ears perked up at the sound of cold earth shifting behind him. He could tell that it wasn't a human based upon the soft padding of the creature's feet. The lycan smiled, speaking firmly to the wolf approaching him from behind.
"Have you come to stop me? Have I finally proven my madness to those old fools you call elders? I can assure you that you'll end up just like all the others if you get in my way, lycan."
The voice behind him was foreign, but pleasant to listen to. Higher in pitch with a false sense of kindness hidden within. It was intriguing to say the least.
"Why would I try to stop you? I happen to enjoy stumbling upon your little messes scattered across the forest. We are of a similar mind, my sweet."
The beta sniffs at the air. The gentle scent of an omega fills his nostrils, and his loins begin to ache. He takes a step back to give himself plenty of room, though whether that room is needed to attack or fuck this omega will remain to be seen.
“You say such sweet words in the shadows, omega. Why don’t you come out and let me see if your form is just as appealing.”
There is a soft chuckle as a slender black wolf appears with a splash of white on his chest and his paws. His eyes are a stunning hazel that glistens in the moonlight. Nate smiles as he takes in the lovely sight in front of him, his long tongue licking his lips.
“Am I pleasing to you, beta?” the omega coos as he presents his neck in submission.
“You are fairly easy on the eyes, yes,” Nate slurs as he approaches. “What do they call you, pretty one?”
“My name is Matt,” the omega replies, his eyes still lowered to the ground. He sits until Nate pushes his own large head on top of the omega to mark his dominance.
“It’s nice to see an omega know his place,” the beta mutters. “Such lovely manners to go with that pretty face.”
Matt lifted his eyes to meet the stunning violet of the beta before him. He seemed docile enough to please Nate, but Matt was no push-over. The omega was responsible for at least fifty human casualties this year alone. Nate may think he's the only lycan around that despises humans but he was dead wrong.
"I'm surprised to see a beta from Mark's pack out this far causing chaos. This is my territory, but I suppose I can let you live. You seem like fun, and it's been quite a while since I've had a good lay." Matt giggled, playfully nipping at Nate's neck.
Nate growls lowly at the omega, his sharp teeth shining against the dark sky. The omega is still giggling at him, with no connection to how insulting those words are to the beta’s ears. This omega is mouthy and cunning, and even though Nate hates to admit it, these are qualities that he admires quite a lot.
“Let’s make a few things clear, Matt,” Nate whispers as he advances on the smaller wolf. “I go where I please in this forest. Territories are for lesser lycans than I, and as far as being part of any pack, I’m impressed that you know where I came from, omega. But I belong to no one now, but myself.”
“Understood, of course,” Matt answers, giving a low bow. “My cabin is just across the way, if you need rest from your killings. My pack is out for a hunt. I can promise you entertainment, if you would accept my company.”
Nate scoffed. He wasn't interested in packs or whatever form of entertainment this mouthy omega could provide. The fact that he believed himself to be the pack's leader was laughable all on its own. Omega's were the grunt, the pack bitch. Their only lot in life is to service an alpha, or in Nate's case, a beta like himself. He had half a mind to just take Matt right here in the middle of the forest just to show him what he really is. A hole to be used by those higher than him.
"Let me see you without that pretty fur, omega. I wanna see your face when I claim you." The beta hissed, widening his stance. Matt chuckled, rolling his eyes as he changed form in the blink of an eye. Nate's violet eyes widened, taking in Matt's nude form. Before him stood a man about his height, with soft brown hair and hazel eyes. His build was a little smaller than Nate's, but his hips were undoubtedly that of an omega's. He was gorgeous.
Matt did a little spin, showing off every delicious curve he had to offer. It was almost like he was taunting Nate to try and make a move. The beta shifted without even thinking, too enamoured with Matt's external beauty to worry about exposing himself like that. The grin on Matt's face only widened, hazel eyes shining against the moonlight. Nate was just as pretty as his wolf, but Matt wasn't going to make this easy for him. He may be an omega, but he's cunning and ruthless. It would be a mistake to underestimate him.
The two lycans stand in the moonlight for a long while, their eyes drifting to the different parts of each other they want to kiss and touch first. Matt motions towards a fallen over tree near the edge of a small clearing, his hips swaying in a tantalizing way as he heads over to the trunk and sits down.
“Come and join me?”
Nate gives another grunt, but he can’t stop a small smirk from appearing on his lips. This omega is a strange one, with the confidence of an alpha in his heart. It’s almost like Matt is courting him, though the scent of sex is thick in the air around them.
“You always like to talk to dangerous strangers, Matt? Not the best idea considering your status.”
“I like danger,” the omega says simply as Nate sits down beside him. “The more dangerous, the better, as a matter of fact.”
Nate chuckles lowly as he slides down closer to him, Matt's sweet aroma causing his teeth to slightly grind. The barely contained urge to take him right on the spot was not lost on the omega. Matt has always been skilled at using his scent and smile to get what he wants.
“Dangerous is right,” the beta says smoothly. “You’ve already allowed me to come close enough to rip your throat out if I wanted to, and you don’t even know my name.”
Matt gives a light laugh, and places his hand on Nate’s thigh.
“There’s only one wolf in these woods with silky black fur and dazzling violet eyes. You are the wondrous beta who stole the heart of his alpha for years. Your cunning and ambition is legendary to all other lycan packs. You’re Nathan, are you not?”
Nate narrowed his eyes, placing his hand on the one Matt was currently using to squeeze the beta's thigh. They both knew where this was going, and all Nate wanted to do was put that foul mouth to good use.
"How perceptive of you, but it matters not what you've heard about me." The beta growled, swiftly moving to close his fist around Matt's throat. The omega just smiled, letting Nate have his moment of perceived dominance. If rough sex was what he wanted then Matt would make it as rough as he could.
"You know, that wicked tongue of yours should only be used to lick my cock clean after I'm done fucking you into the ground. You think you're special? No. You're just another hole to fuck." Nate spat, using his body weight to force Matt onto his back. Cold earth was pressing up against the omega's bare back, Nate holding him firmly in place as he knelt in between Matt's spread legs. The omega didn't seem one bit phased, even going so far as to wrap his legs around Nate's waist.
"Go ahead. Try and claim me, beta. I challenge you to make me your bitch."
Nate smirked, his cock already pulsing and painfully hard at the prospect of fucking this loud mouth into submission. But before he could even attempt to penetrate Matt, he was flipped onto his back with two pale hands wrapped tightly around his throat. He didn't even see Matt move, but the omega managed to pin Nate like he weighed nothing at all.
"My turn." The omega chortled, lifting his hips to press his rim against Nate's leaking tip. The beta's eyes glazed over as Matt slowly sank down on his throbbing length, teasing him with a slow circling of his curvy hips.
"You're my bitch tonight, Nate. Try and keep up, if you can."
The omega's slender fingers squeeze even tighter around the beta's thick throat, and Matt smiles at the sound of choked gasps underneath his touch. He can feel Nate's pulse quicken as he grows even harder, surrounded by such amazing heat. The beta is lost in pleasure as he groans lowly, the omega's thrusts painfully slow around him. His vision blurs as he grabs a hold of Matt's wrists with his own hands and smirks.
"Is that all you got, omega? You're disappointing me."
Just the slightest of frowns flickers across the his face, but within a moment the smile on Matt's lips has reappeared. He tightens his grip around the beta's throat, and Nate rocks his hips as hard as he can upwards. Matt's eyes roll back, mouth falling open and he shakes as his prostate is hit. The momentary daze from the hammering his ass is taking is all Nate needs to adjust his hands and make the omega release his grip on his neck. The omega falls onto his back with the other lycan still pumping hard inside him, and a leg on each shoulder now has Nate in control.
"You're mine, omega," Nate snarls as he bites hard on Matt's plump thigh. "Mine to breed and claim."
Matt screams when Nate's sharp teeth sink into his soft flesh, nearly climaxing on the spot as he jolts forward and back.
"Again," the omega groans. "Fuck, bite me again."
The next bite draws blood that drips down to the forest floor, and the fluttering around Nate's dick is mind blowing. Whatever this omega is doing to his body is causing his legs to almost give way. The need to fuck until the sun comes up the only thing on Nate's hazy mind.
Matt's sweet sounds were going straight to Nate's cock, driving him to pound into the omega harder. His blunt nails dug into Matt's thighs, twisting his body until his face was buried in the soft grass beneath him. The omega arched his back, rocking back to meet Nate's bruising thrusts. There was an ever present struggle for power and control between them, and each time the other thought that they'd made their partner submit, the battle started again.
Before long Nate was back on his ass, pinned under Matt as the omega rode him silly. The beta's mind was fuzzy, pleasure flooding his body steadily until a familiar heat began to blossom in his belly. Blood was smeared across their pale skin, goosebumps and bruises spread around evenly over bitten and clawed flesh. Matt swore under his breath, his free hand wrapping around his drooling cock to pump at the rapid rhythm his hips had set.
"F-fuck, m'close." He mumbled, tilting his head back and exposing his neck to the cold winter breeze. Nate gripped the omega's hips, thrusting up at an angle to nail Matt's abused prostate. The boy howled like an animal as he released, thick ropes of cum splattered across his chest and Nate's belly. The beta nearly blacked out from the painful pressure that was now squeezing his cock in rhythmic bliss. Nate snarled as he flipped them over, drilling into the omega's oversensitive hole until his cock twitched and began to pump Matt full of his thick spunk.
The omega tensed, his chest heaving as he collapsed against Nate's chest. The raven-haired lycan chuckled, his cock still sheathed inside of Matt's ass. His mind was blissfully blank, only slightly able to comprehend the words that Matt was saying to him as he caught his breath.
"As I was saying, my cabin is just over that hill. Care to join me?"
Nate licked his lips, a deep growl bubbling up from his chest.
The sharp sounds of panting and skin sliding together filled the cabin's interior, mixing with Matt's moans and Nate's growls of pleasure. Their pale skin was slick with sweat, blood, and cum, staining the sheets that were torn in certain places. The wall next to the headboard was dented and scratched, the nightstand turned over on its side. It looked like a fight broke out between them, with no clear cut winner to be crowned. Matt was on all fours, his slick chest pressed against the mattress as Nate pounded into his abused ass. The omega's fourth strong orgasm was rapidly building, fat beads of precum dripping from his cock onto the bed.
Nate bit his lip, digging his nails into Matt's hips as he jerked forward and unloaded into him for the third time that night. His neck and shoulders were littered with bites and scratches from Nate, none of them designed to bond Matt to him. The omega's jaw went slack, the head of Nate's spurting cock brushing up against his prostate and forcing out his fourth orgasm for the night. The sheets were a disaster, but neither really cared. Nate pulled out, watching with satisfaction as Matt collapsed onto his belly, cum leaking from his ass that showed who he belonged to for now.
"Had enough, omega?" Nate panted, flopping onto his back to try and catch his breath. Matt giggled breathlessly, nodding.
"I'm surprised you kept up as long as you did. Most lycans can't handle me."
“I’m not your typical lycan,” Nate wheezed as he begins to rub his fingers over the bites on his neck and shoulders. Even now the painful pleasure of each of them was causing his dick to twitch again.
Nate chuckles darkly as he begins to stretch his arms around the omega, breathing in the scent of himself all over the bruising skin. Matt sighs as the two lay together, the mess around them evidence of their brutal dance with the bedsheets.
“So what now?” Nate asks, his dark eyes meeting Matt's twinkling hazel.
“I’m all for another round once I get a nap in, but I have food if you’re hungry. I’m an even better hunter than I am a lover. Hard to believe, but it’s true.”
Before Nate can respond Matt is already getting up, and the beta gives the omega a hard snack on the ass as he heads towards the kitchen area of the little cabin. Nate's eyes followed him closely, sighing in content as he took in the moment. The beta chuckled, feeling satisfied for the first time in years. Matt wasn't overly filled with righteous indignation like Mark was, and it felt nice to bury his cock in someone else's ass for a change. Bottoming felt degrading to him now that he thought back on it, and he couldn't remember how many times Mark claimed him like this. The notion left a bad taste in his mouth. But his frown soon melted away once Matt returned with two glasses of wine and something that looked like dried meat.
"I think you'll find it quiet cozy here, if you choose to stay. I honestly can't remember the last time I had a lay that good." Matt said, a small smile on his lips as he sat back down on the bed. Nate hummed, thinking that it wouldn't hurt to stay here for a while. At least he would have a warm bed and a soft omega to fuck until he was drooling and unable to speak. It didn't sound all that bad.
"I'll sleep on it, yeah? I can't deny that I haven't felt this good in a long time. It's so nice to release tension like that, to not have to worry about roles or ranks."
Matt handed Nate his glass, taking a long sip from his own before setting it down on the only bedside table that wasn't destroyed.
"It's only an offer, Nate. I'm not asking for you to mate me. I'm only interested in that dick of yours, and maybe a little conversation in between."
“Nice that we are of the same mind,” Nate grins as he takes a bite out of the meat. “I’m not interested in anything but a play thing for now. As far as conversation, you’re intelligent enough for me not to crawl out of bed and leave right afterwards.”
Matt smirks as he takes another sip of the wine. The flavors melt together with the salt on his lips left from Nate’s skin. His hazel eyes travel from the beta’s full lips to his small chin and slender lines of his muscles. The desire to have something more is pushed down with such a force in Matt’s heart that he has to adjust in his chair. Nate’s dark eyes widen at his movement, and he looks quizzically at the omega.
“Just need to get used to the feeling of so much dick in my ass,” Matt chortles as he gets up out of his seat to refill their glasses. “It’s been a while since I’ve been with someone who knows what the fuck their actually doing.”
“Even now with the flattery,” Nate replies, gazing at Matt’s backside as he heads back over for refills. “Not to say that I mind the words coming out of your pretty mouth.”
Matt smiled to himself as he pours fresh drinks for the two of them, his hazel gaze looking quickly out of the window to the cabin. He can tell that it shouldn’t be long before the others return. Perhaps now that he was actively with another wolf his pack would stop pushing him to finally mate. He could always say that Nate was courting him. Even if he wasn’t part of the pack, they wouldn’t care. As long as he was playing the part of the softer omega, he could do as he pleased in the forest, including killing humans stupid enough to wander too close to his part of the woods.
“You’re taking a long time with the wine, Matt. Something troubling your mind?”
“No, not at all,” the omega purrs as he turns around with perfect drinks, setting them back on the table. “Just thinking about how I’m going to enjoy our little arrangement, for as long as you plan to hang around.”
Jack's hands were shaking as he stood outside the cabin door, his warm breath ghosting in front of his pale lips. This was a terrible idea. Not more than a few hours ago these two lycans were at each other's throats, but now it seems like they swept it under the rug. He could still feel the uncomfortable tension around him, but that might be from the four other naked men surrounding him. Jack wasn't exactly used to seeing his mate strutting around with his dick out. Add in the rest of the pack and his already frayed nerves were set to explode.
"Are you ready, Jack?" Mark asked, smiling sweetly. The brunette nodded, hoping the others wouldn't pick up on his little lie. The alpha certainly did though, leaning down toward Jack's ear to reassure him while the others began to shift.
"Relax, it's only a hunt. You'll do fine."
Jack tries to smile back at Mark, but the light of his grin doesn’t meet his blue eyes. Mark rubs his narrow back slowly before shifting into the black wolf. Jack shuffles his bare feet as he feels a soft nuzzle to his right leg.
“I won’t let anything happen to you Jack,” the alpha whispers to him. “I promise that you will be safe with the pack.”
The omega nods again and takes a deep breath as his pale skins turns into bright snowy fur, eyes becoming instantly green.
“This is Jack’s virginal hunt,” Mark calls out, and the rest of the wolves quiet down instantly to pay close attention. “Let’s give him all of the support and encouragement that he needs.”
The other wolves bark their agreement, with even Tyler bowing his large head in firm acceptance of Jack going on the hunt with them.
“Ethan,” Mark says loudly, and there is a small gasp when the only other omega in the pack is singled out. Tyler’s blue eyes follow Ethan’s smaller form as he heads up to the front.
“Yes, alpha?” replies Ethan, his voice laced with confusion.
“I want you to travel with Jack,” Mark softly says. “You know these woods better than anyone, and I believe that it would benefit Jack to learn from such an experienced hunter.”
“Wait,” Jack squeaks at Mark, before Ethan can respond. “I’m not going with you?”
"I won't be far. If anything should happen or if something feels wrong just howl for me and I'll come running. Ethan is the only other omega in this pack and it'll do you some good to bond with him. You are their Luna after all." Mark stated, a small smile on his lips. Tyler was already trotting up towards them, his light brown fur shifting with the wind. The alpha nudged Ethan with his snout, communicating something to him that Jack couldn't understand.
"Mark, Felix has picked up on a interesting scent trail up north. He can't be sure but it might be another pack moving into our territory." Tyler advised. Mark's eyes darted back towards Jack, sighing as he nodded reluctantly. He couldn't just ignore this, even if it wasn't something serious. It could just be a few wolves migrating to a new area, or it could be Nate looking for trouble. Whatever it was needed to be checked out though. So with a huff Mark instructed his mate to stay close to Ethan while the others investigated Felix's claim.
Mark and Tyler took off into the trees, leaving Jack alone with Ethan. The other omega was a little smaller than Jack, reeking of fresh blueberries and violets. His dark gray fur was streaked with strands of white, making his silver eyes stand out against the night's sky. He seemed friendly enough, like Jack could trust him to not try and kill him while Mark was otherwise occupied.
"Ready to get going? There's a game trail not too far from here. We might be able to catch a wild turkey if we hurry." The boy chirped, bouncing a bit with excitement.
“Yeah, I guess so,” Jack sighs as his sharp eyes watch Mark and Tyler disappear into the darkening woods.
Ethan gives an excited bark as he begins to head north with Jack on his heels. The smaller omega lifts his gray head and sniffs at the air as they move, and Jack copies him. The smell of the woods is thick tonight, and there are so many sounds that Jack needs to shake his own head to help himself focus.
“How do you deal with so much noise?” He asks as he reaches Ethan’s left side. “It makes me want to bang my skull against the nearest tree.”
Ethan gives a loud giggle and pauses his steps. He sits on the ground and motions for Jack to do the same.
“It can be a bit much,” the boy admits. “What helps me is when the world gets too loud is to stop and truly listen.”
Jack blinks his bright green eyes, his dubious expression making Ethan giggle again.
“Sorry, I didn't mean to have it come across like a riddle. What I mean is, close your eyes and open your ears. Your heart will tell you what the most important things to hear are.”
Jack complies, and if anything the sounds get louder without the distraction of sight. He frowns deeply, but the voice of Ethan is louder than everything else at the moment.
“Just breathe in and out,” the other omega whispers, and Jack can tell that he’s close to his right ear. “Feel the forest all around you. In between the pads of your feet, and in the cool breeze in your fur. Trust your instincts.”
Then slowly the loud noises muffled themselves in Jack’s ears and he can only hear a faint scratching noise just east of where the omegas are sitting.
“I hear something to the right,” Jack mutters. “It’s a bird of some sort, eating from the forest floor.”
Ethan beamed, his front paws patting against the dirt with excitement. He's been praying for Mark to bring home another omega for him to talk to. It's not that he didn't like or appreciate the things Nate did while he was here, but being the only omega in a pack full of wolves higher in rank than you can feel very isolating.
"Very good! Once you get the hang of it it's really quite easy. Omegas bear the brunt of the actual hunting, but since our pack only has two the rest have obviously had to pitch in or we'd all starve," Ethan murmured. "But I'm glad you're here, Jack. And I'm sorry for how my mate treated you. You're not an outsider. You're pack, and pack means family."
Jack quirks his furry head in confusion at Ethan’s last words. He had no idea that there were other mates in the pack other than him and Mark. Thinking back to the subtle gestures between Ethan and Tyler though, Jack feels slightly embarrassed that he hadn’t pick up on it before.
“Is it ok if I ask you about that?” Jack mumbles to the other omega. “About being a mate, and about, you know...”
Now it’s Ethan’s turn to look puzzled, his silver eyes blinking as he moves a bit closer to Jack to make sure he can hear every word.
“How is it?” Jack continues, his cheeks feeling hot under his white fur.
“Do you mean sex?” Ethan asks, smiling sweetly. Jack shifts his gaze down to the ground and then back up to Ethan's silver eyes.
“Yeah, how is it? I have no idea how to go about it. We’ve kissed and I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t amazing, but sex...that’s, no pun intended, a different animal entirely.”
Ethan giggled, his posture relaxing. Sex wasn't a touchy topic for him, or really any of them besides Jack. To Ethan it's as natural as breathing, and the way Tyler worships him when they are intimate is one of the most precious moments in the young omega's life.
The boy looked off wistfully, recalling moments past that made his heart flutter.
"I figured you might have some questions about that. But I feel it's important to say first that your experience will depend on your partner. I'm not sure if you've been with anyone prior to mating Mark, but I can assure you that Mark will take great care of you."
Ethan gave Jack a small smile, nudging him gently with his nose. The white wolf sighed, his mind going back to his morning with Mark. He's never felt so close to another person like that, to where even physical intimacy wasn't enough. He wanted to go further, but maybe now isn't the best time to try?
"I've only ever been with one woman, but I know that sex with Mark will be a completely different experience. I guess I'm just nervous. I've never done anything like this before." Jack confessed, looking down bashfully. He felt odd talking about this sort of thing with a boy he just met, but Ethan understood him better than his own mate did at the moment. Mark would learn more about Jack as time passed and they grew closer together, it was just getting over the hump that terrified him.
"The pain is only a temporary thing, Jack. But Mark will do whatever is necessary to keep you comfortable when you two decide to act on your instincts. But sex is like a dance, it takes both people to turn a simple movement into a beautiful act of expression. Just trust your instincts and remember to relax. Mark won't hurt you."
Jack can feel his chest loosen a small amount from the young omega’s assurances about what it would be like when he and Mark finally became one. He has spent the previous night thinking about where he would place his arms and legs while they kissed. About how they would connect their bodies together in a moment of heated passion.
“Do you think that Mark will like being with me?” Jack asks, realizing how awkward the question actually is after the fact.
“If he didn’t like you,” Ethan says, his eyes wide as he looked at Jack’s nervous face. “He never would have mated with you, regardless of how you came to the pack.”
"I guess you're right," Jack sighed, rising up on all fours and sniffing the air. The scent of a wild turkey was lightly intwined with the smell of cold earth and snow. Small flakes of ice were beginning to fall from the overcast skies, almost blotting out the light of the moon completely. Ethan followed Jack's lead, his nose to the ground as he tracked his next meal. Jack was raised to be a hunter, but this was very different than the way his father taught him when he was a young boy. His senses were all over the place at times, picking up different scents that belonged to Mark's pack. The omega began to follow the scent of his mate, his brain blocking out everything else as if it was trying to tell him something important. Oak and hazelnut filled his nose, his heart beating frantically at the prospect of seeing Mark.
But the omega at his side was going the complete opposite direction, stopping once he noticed Jack veering off to the north once again.
"Jack? The turkey is this way. Did you find something else worth investigating?" The smaller omega questioned, following Jack warily.
"I don't know, I smell Mark and the others but there's a scent I don't recognize among them. It's spicy, kind of like pepper or some kind of clover maybe?"
A sudden realization clicked inside Ethan's head, chuckling at who Jack was tracking.
"Oh, that's just Ryan. He was out scouting for a bit, so I'm assuming that's who Mark and the others are meeting with."
"Ryan?" Jack cock his head, stopping to inhale deeply. "Another beta."
"Yeah. Most of our pack is made up of betas, but Ryan doesn't stick around for very long. The only person he's actually close to is Felix, but he likes to keep his personal business to himself. Hell, no one but Felix is actually allowed to address him as Ryan. Everyone else just calls him Cry."
There is a sudden rustling in a bush nearby and both omegas raise their noses into the air to sniff. The scent of whomever this Cry is grows by the moment, and to Jack’s slight concern, is laced with bitter copper.
“Is that blood I smell?” he whispers to Ethan, who is beginning to look worried.
“Maybe Cry has been hunting,” the smaller omega says hopefully. “He’s always great about bringing large prey back to the pack.”
In a moment though, a large silver wolf hobbles from the underbrush. His eyes focused on continuing to move despite the massive gashes in his right side.
“Cry!” Ethan barks as he races over to the large lycan. “What happened!?”
The silver wolf collapsed onto the ground, panting from a combination of pain and blood loss. Ethan quickly shifted, dropping to his knees with wide panic-filled eyes. Cry looked as if he'd been gored by a buck, and it was a miracle that he was even alive at this point. The silver wolf slowly changed shape, his bright fur receding until pale flesh stained crimson was left behind.
"I-It was an ambush. The truce has been broken." Cry choked out, blood leaking from his lips. Jack looked on in horror, frozen in place as Cry struggled to speak. Someone had to find Mark and the others, and with Ethan otherwise occupied with trying to keep the young man alive it looked like it was up to Jack to alert the pack.
The new omega tipped his head back, howling with a mixture of fear and sorrow. It was only a few seconds later when a series of loud howls answered him in the distance.
Ethan began to work on dressing Cry’s wounds. Even though he's healing, the process is going incredibly slow. Whatever weapon was used against the beta was made for deeply injuring a lycan, and the smaller omega is struggling to place thick leaves on the gashes to at least slow down the bleeding.
“Jack,” shouts Mark’s voice in the distance, and Jack howls again to help the others know exactly where they are. The first wolf that reaches them is Tyler, with Felix right behind him.
The blonde wolf gasps as he sees Cry on the ground, trembling in pain. Felix and Tyler shift into human form as Mark finally rushes forward, his scarlet eyes surveying the bloody scene.
“What happened?” Felix yelps, placing his shaking hand on Cry’s forehead. Cry groans as he looks back up at Felix, their blue eyes connecting with each other's.
“Something about an ambush,” Jack says quickly, more to Mark than to the others. “And a truce being broken. What does that mean, Mark?”
The alpha, for the first time since Jack has known him, looks unsettled, frightened even. Mark turns to Tyler, his voice as commanding as ever.
“Take Cry to the sleeping grounds,” he barks. “There's medication for these types of wounds in my cabin, under the loose floorboards. You know where it is.”
Tyler grunts that he understands, and lifts Cry up into his arms. The beta cries out in pain, but Felix is able to hush him.
“Felix,” Mark continues as he changes back to human form. “Go with them and stay by Cry’s side throughout the night once he’s been medicated. Tyler will protect our part of the forest while Jack and I are away.”
“Away?” Jack says, feeling confused. “But where are we -“
“Ethan,” Mark continued, motioning for Jack not to speak. “Get me the travel bag near my bed and bring it back here, then start to secure all of the cabins in case humans are able to find the sleeping grounds.”
“Yes alpha,” Ethan nods as he shifts back, beginning to run towards the cabins with Tyler trailing behind him, Cry in his arms and Felix by his side.
“We are going to see The Elders,” Mark says, finally answering Jack’s question. “Tell them what's going on. About the truce being broken, if they aren’t already aware.”
“Why am I coming with you?”
“Because you are a new wolf, Jack. The Elders need to know about any pack members that are not born naturally.”
Mark turns and rubs the omega’s shoulder.
“Besides that, you are my Luna. It is tradition that you go with me whenever an alpha meets with The Elders.”
“Oh,” Jack mutters, his cheeks going red. “Then what’s the travel bag for? Supplies for the trip?”
Mark gives a small nod of his head.
“In a way, yes. It’s clothing for us to wear when we meet up with Robin. He’s a human liaison between lycans and humans. He’s a very good friend, but he’s never been comfortable with our nudity.”
Jack completely understands Mark's point, feeling the same level of embarrassment when he was exposed to just how comfortable they were in their own skin. But what did he really expect? Clothing was an unnecessary hindrance when it came to lycans. The omega shook the thought away, his eyes focused completely on Mark and what they should do next. They weren't all that far off from the sleeping grounds, so Ethan's return would be sooner an he thought.
"Mark, what did he mean when he said that the truce had been broken? What truce?" Jack started, the answer already evident by the expression on his mate's face. There was a reason Mark mated Jack so quickly, but it wasn't the reason that Jack was already looking at.
"We had a three year truce between us and the humans. Before that time blood between our species was shed daily, but it finally came to stop with the help of people like Robin and the elders that guide our kind. If the peace between us has been broken then we're in deeper shit than I originally thought." Mark explained rather quickly, spotting Ethan's blurred form racing up to meet them. Jack sucked in a deep breath, his mind processing what his alpha had just said. He's heard about the darker times before he came to this land, but he wasn't around for the period of time that all of this violence was taking place. The Irishman didn't set foot on this soil until late last year, when his mother passed and he lost the land that belonged to his family. He figured a fresh start in a new area would help to ease his pain, but it only ended up cursing him to a life few people know of.
So was this the reason Mark mated him? Some kind of weird bridge between the two species? Mark, a purebred lycan mated to a turned human. How political. Ethan is quick to return, racing up to them with the satchel between his jaws.
“Thank you, Ethan,” Mark says as Ethan hands him the satchel. “Jack, we will get dressed now and begin to travel at once.”
The alpha turns back to the omega, who sits and patiently waits for more instructions. His silver eyes glisten in the shining light of the moon.
“Take care of each other,” Mark mutters, placing a hand on top of the smaller omega’s furry head. “We will be back as soon as we are able. Tyler will need you now more than ever, Ethan.”
“Yes, alpha,” Ethan barks as he turns and races back towards the sleeping grounds.
Mark opens the satchel and hands Jack a pair of soft pants and a loose fitting shirt. The clothes are slightly too big, but the omega is able to adjust them enough so that they don’t fall down. His light blue eyes watch Mark as he slides into a darker pair of pants that fit him quite well, with a lighter colored shirt snug on his arms and chest.
The alpha chuckles, catching Jack drooling over him as those eyes greedily drink in the sight of Mark's body, his cheeks turning red even in the pale light of the moon.
“Sorry,” Jack mumbles as he shifts his gaze to the ground. “I’m still getting used to how looking at you makes me feel.”
“It’s alright,” Mark replies, his lips forming a soft smile. “You are allowed to look at me, Jack. We are mates, after all.”
The omega ducks his head, blushing furiously at Mark's words. He doesn't know how much longer he'll be able to hold off on actually acting like Mark's mate. His instincts are going crazy, pulling him towards Mark while his mind is pulling him away. And the talk with Ethan wasn't exactly helping him to resist his alpha's subtle charm.
Mark sighed as he slung the satchel over his shoulder, turning his head to focus on the journey ahead. The alpha was about ten feet ahead of Jack before the brunette realized that Mark was moving. His blue eyes were glazed over, almost drooling over Mark's ass as he walked. Jack shook his head, his cheeks heating up as he jogged up to Mark's side. His mind was filled with conflicting images, from blood and war to sex and passion. The poor omega was just an anxious ball of suppressed desire at this point.
Jack suppressed an anxious huff in his throat. Despite the need to at least kiss him again, his feelings were twisting in his stomach and heart. So much is happening now for him to even consider asking the alpha for another moment like the one they shared in bed that morning. Perhaps something simpler would help his heart to not ache so much for more.
The alpha walks quickly in the darkness, his bare feet moving nimbly through the forest while Jack's steps are still a bit tentative. Mark seems to be making a point of slowing down just enough for both of them to stay at the same pace. The omega glances down at Mark's slightly swaying arm as he walks, his handsome face focusing on the path ahead.
It was far too quiet for Jack's liking, making that little voice inside his head all the more deafening. It was crying out for Jack to do something, to complete the act of mating and claim the alpha as his own. He wanted to. God he wanted to, but he'd have to hold off on that urge just a little longer. Jack had to remember that there was something horrible going on in the forest, and he should know better than anyone how destructive a pissed off lycan can be. Nate wouldn't just stop at one village. He wanted to wipe the humans out completely. The thought sent a shiver down his spine, making his body react to find a source of comfort. Before he even knew what he was doing he felt his fingers brush up against Mark's, tenitively curling around the alpha's hand until their fingers were laced together. Mark's sudden expression showed his confusion for a moment, but it melted away to reveal a soft smile. He gave his mate's hand a little squeeze, silently telling him that it was ok, which sent a wave of warm comfort crashing over Jack. His heart was crawling up his throat, his instincts screaming at him to do more. He wanted more than this, and eventually it would reach a point where neither of them would be able to hold back.
"I'm sorry. I-I didn't mean to grab you like that, it just sort of happened." Jack muttered, blushing furiously as he focused on his hand wrapped up in Mark's. The alpha chuckled, stopping for a moment to look at his mate. His finger hooked under Jack's chin, lifting his face up until their eyes met once again. It was endearing to see how nervous Jack was over a simple thing like hand holding, and Mark could feel his racing pulse against his skin as he stepped forward to close what little gap there was between them.
"Jack, you don't have to apologize for holding my hand or for wanting more. I can see it in your eyes, feel it when our skin touches. I want this. I want you. So please don't feel like you have something to be sorry about. You don't." Mark murmured, his thumb tracing the curve of Jack's bottom lip. The need to be closer was an excruciating itch under his skin, and at this point Jack was beginning to become desperate for relief.
"Why do I want you so badly? It's all I can think about, and I feel terrible for how primal it feels." Jack admitted, his eyes hooded and dazed as he drank up his alpha's strong scent. Everything about this man was intoxicating, and Jack just wanted to get drunk on him until the end of time.
"The simple answer is that we are mates," the alpha softly coos. "Our souls are woven together, just like our fingers."
Jack feels his hand being squeezed tightly once again, and not thinking about anything but the man's lips in front of him, he pushes himself up off of the heels of his feet and their lips meet.
Mark let's go of the omega's hand and wraps strong arms around his narrow waist, lifting Jack up off of the ground. The kiss is passionate and slow, and it eases both of their hearts in such a dark moment in time. Mark's mind goes completely blank for a moment, focusing solely on the taste of Jack's kiss as their lips move against each other's. Jack's mouth opens slightly, and Mark doesn't waste a single second in claiming his mate a little more. Their eyes are closed, letting the heat of the moment consume them just a little longer.
Mark feels the urge to push Jack up against a tree and ravish him until he's breathless and starry-eyed, but he forces himself to break the mouthwatering kiss. Jack deserves to be worshipped when that time finally comes, and Mark will make sure that every need he has in his heart is sated. Mark plants a few lighter kisses across Jack's mouth, nuzzling his nose with a sigh as he sets him back down. The boy suppresses a whine at the loss of contact, but they have a task to do. His heart can wait just a little longer.
Jack sighs as he feels his feet touch the wet ground underneath. Even now he is amazed at how strong the alpha is, and yet he's also so incredibly gentle. Those eyes, whether deep brown or scarlet red, have the same warmth and kindness in them. And Jack feels himself drowning in Mark's comfort a little more each day.
The omega holds the larger hand in his again as they continue down a path that only Mark understands.
“Will the Elder’s be upset with me being a...um, what was I called again.”
“A new wolf,” Mark answers as the two begin to move a bit faster. “The Elders are opened to more of us being around, especially since the slaughter of the nursery a few years ago. We lost many cubs, females and omega’s that night.”
Jack winced, his heart heavy at the news of what had happened previously. Was that why Nate was so angry and bitter? Had he lost someone? As if Mark could read his mind the answer to his question was said. Mark kept his eyes focused on the path ahead, holding onto Jack's hand to give them both some comfort.
"Nathan lost his mate and their pup in the culling, the girl was only five months old. Since then he's changed, and what used to be a loving family man is now reduced to what you've seen. He believes them all to be the same, that humans are a disease that needs to be eradicated. But he's wrong." Mark muttered, glancing down at Jack. The omega frowned, but he was able to relate to the pain Nathan was in. He's tasted the bitterness of loss, both to senseless violence and the cruelty of sickness and old age. Mark was all he had left in this world now.
“How are we going to stop him,” Jack questions, trying to pull away from even more sad thoughts of his past.
Mark sighs deeply as he raises his eyes towards the moon; the only light that was protecting them from being lost in dark shadows. It’s a good question that Jack has asked, and the alpha wishes he had a good answer for him.
“Honestly, I don’t know,” Mark says, his voice soft. “I’m hoping that it doesn’t come down to more violence to stop him, but if it comes to that, I’ll be prepared for it.”
The finality of those words feels heavy in the air as if it's only now that Mark has realized that Nate's death is a very possible outcome. Jack can just detect a tremble in the hand he is holding, and those dark eyes seem to be sparkling with sudden tears barely holding on.
The omega tugs at Mark's hand, lifting it up towards his mouth to kiss each of his fingers. Even though they were barely acquainted with each other Jack felt his heart constrict with emotions he didn't understand. He should be upset that Mark has dragged him into this mess in the first place. The alpha's leniency towards Nate has gotten people killed, and God only knows if Cry is going to survive. Jack doesn't want to admit that he's in over his head, but he truly is.
The rest of their short journey is spent in silence, with both wolves dreading the negative response that's sure to come from the elders. They wouldn't be happy to hear that one of Mark's own was out causing problems and killing innocents, and less so about the fact that Mark has yet to do anything about it. Jack sighed as they approached an area heavily scent marked by powerful alphas. It didn't look all that different than the sleeping grounds that Mark used as a base camp. The only difference is that these log cabins were guarded to prevent an attack on the elders. Robin would be there to discuss what's been happening lately and Mark would have to fill in the details that were only known to him and Nate.
The elders are comprised of four wise wolves that supersede all others. Victor; a tall and skinny alpha with thinning gray hair and pale blue eyes is usually the voice that decides a wolf's fate. His European accented voice is like a bullhorn, and if Mark were honest he's the wolf he fears the most. Not Nate.
Amelia, Silas, and Charlotte are the elders that Mark has to win over. If Victor decides to wage a war in retaliation for what the humans have done he'll need the majority on his side to stop a potential bloodbath from happening.
As the two head towards a small clearing Mark suddenly stops, and Jack glances over at the alpha, his blue eyes wide in trepidation. Mark is focused on a tiny cabin all alone, with the windows all closed, and he sniffs at the air.
The omega sniffs as well, and the scent of fine hickory lingers in his nose. He opens his mouth to speak, but Mark softly grunts, and Jack falls silent.
“You should always signal before you get too close,” mutters a quiet voice with a vaguely Swedish accent. Jack jumps and Mark turns his head slowly to the shadow just to the side of a nearby tree.
A slender man with dark blonde hair and light blue eyes slinks towards the two lycans. In his hands are a bow and arrow, with the latter aimed directly at Jack.
“Jack,” the alpha says carefully, and Jack’s small arms tighten around Mark’s waist as he shrinks back. “Don’t move any more than you already have. The human in front of us is Robin, and he’s an expert shot. You’ll be dead before you run three steps.”
Jack's eyes widen in surprise, clinging to Mark tightly. The alpha holds up his hands, showing Robin that he means him no harm. The human is only doing what he was tasked to do, and no one was expected to come so close to where the elders were safely nestled.
"I need to speak with the elders, Robin. The truce between our species has been broken, and I fear that war is imminent." Mark speaks, showing the human no fear. Robin hesitates but eventually lowers his weapon. He knows who Mark is but this new wolf is putting him on edge. Robin may be just a human but he's incredibly in tune with the Lycans. It's a gift he's used to speak on behalf of his species as an ambassador of sorts.
"If that's true then war has already begun."
Mark motions that he understands, his strong arms still raised until Robin moves closer to the two wolves, his blue eyes shifting from Mark back to Jack. The human’s movements are slow and deliberate. It’s easy for even the omega to see that Robin is incredibly knowledgeable in how to communicate with a lycan. Without words, Jack knew that the man is approaching only him to see what he is and that he shouldn’t be afraid. Mark gives a small sound in his throat to reassure this fact to the omega once the human reaches out a hand towards Jack’s chest.
The omega is wary and slightly frightened but stands still as he feels the warm hand push the fabric of his oversized shirt off of his shoulder, revealing part of his chest. Then Robin’s sharp eyes glance at the bite on Jack’s neck, and his nostrils twitch slightly as he moves back again, now directing his gaze towards the alpha.
“This explains a bit as to why you are late to talk the Elders,” Robin says, his voice heavy with concern. “He can’t be more than a few days turned, Mark. I’m not here to question your motives for mating him, but you know that the Elders will be furious.”
“I’m aware of this,” Mark replies, his hand touching Jack’s fingers and interlacing them with his own again.
“Victor especially will be angry,” the human continues, his head turning to see the two men holding hands now. “But I’m happy to see you settling down. He has a kind heart, and he's quite the fighter for an omega.”
Jack can feel the heat in his cheeks again as both of the other men look at him and chuckle. The omega wishes that he didn’t blush at every single fucking thing it seemed.
“Your alpha is a good one,” Robin smiles, finally speaking to Jack this time. “Saved my life at least a dozen times, I think.”
The human lifts up his right hand towards Jack for him to shake.
“I’m usually not this rude,” he continues, his manners now much more friendly. “Your face and scent were not familiar, and you can never be too cautious. You have my name, but I didn’t get yours yet.”
The omega mutters a quiet "Jack" before reaching out his hand to greet Robin. His scent is muted due to his species, but Jack can still pick up some notes of spice when the wind blows just right. The human's demeanor has shifted dramatically, and Jack can tell that he's no longer a threat. The omega peels himself away from Mark's side, realizing how silly he looks. His actions definitely mimicked that of a skittish dog, making the boy sigh and roll his eyes at himself. Robin catches his expression, giggling slightly as to how apparent his emotions are right now.
"It'll take some time to get used to. You're still so new to this, but I have a feeling that you'll grow into quite the fearsome predator." Robin remarks with a kind smile.
“God, I sure hope so,” Jack replies back as he feels Mark’s hand on the small of his back.
“You will,” the alpha softly says as he rubs the omega’s back gently. “Robin is right. It will just take some time.”
With a turn on his heels, Robin motions for the other two to follow him into his small cabin, and after walking inside, Jack’s small nose is filled with the delicious smell of cooked meat. Mark smiles at the way his mate is eyeing the small amount of meat on the counter, the turkey surrounded by bright colored vegetables and a small loaf of bread.
“Help yourself,” Robin smirks at the longing look in Jack’s blue eyes. “I have more than enough for guests. Especially for the Luna of such a good friend.”
Jack glances at Mark who gives him a small nod, and the omega races over and sits down breaking off the only drumstick left on the carcass and biting into it.
“You are feeding him, aren’t you?” Robin whispers to Mark, his small smile growing on his lips.
Mark gives a loud laugh and nods his head again.
“He eats when he’s nervous,” the alpha remarks. “It’s kind of adorable, actually.”
The human watches the way the dark eyes of the alpha move from Jack's soft face to his slender neck, and then down the rest of Jack’s form.
“It is nice to see how much you care about him,” Robin whispers. “You both are welcomed to stay here until morning. The elders will be expecting you when the sun rises.”
Mark smiles and thanks Robin for his generosity and kindness, inquiring as to where he'll be sleeping for the night. The alpha considers Robin as an adopted member of the lycan family, so naturally, he wants to be close enough to keep the human safe should anything happen. Robin smiles in return, gesturing to the area right outside the cabin. The human has a place just beyond the treeline, high up in the branches to keep himself safe from predators.
"I'll be alright, Mark. But I'll be sure to grab your attention if I really need it. Just focus on Jack for tonight. I can tell how desperate you are for him." Robin murmured, keeping his voice low. Mark hummed, watching Jack devour the entire left side of the turkey before forcing himself to stop. He should never have mentioned to Mark that he was a stress eater, now he was just embarrassed. Jack turned his head, a small but guilty smile on his face. His cheeks were stuffed with turkey that he was still chewing, mumbling a muffled "sorry," to Robin for eating half of his dinner in one go. It was adorable for Mark to witness, and he felt as if he were seeing the real Jack for the first time. They haven't really had much of a chance to just be themselves around each other, so the person he knows to be his mate only looks like he has one layer to him. But Jack was more complex than that. He was sweet and silly, passionate but shy. There were a million different layers that he has yet to peel back, just like Mark. But they had an entire lifetime to see those parts of each other. Or so they hoped.
Robin gives a small tilt of his head to the small area to the back of the cabin, and Mark’s eyes move to see a tiny curtained off area. Mark whispers his thanks as the human grabs a couple of small blankets and heads outside of his cabin for the night.
It’s only when the front door shuts that Jack looks up again from his food to realize that they were alone again. The omega wipes his messy face with the back of his hand but it does very little to actually clean his lips and chin. Mark smirks as he hands him a cloth from the counter, and Jack shyly takes it.
“It’s best to get the both of us looking as well groomed as we can for the Elders,” Mark softly says as Jack tries in vain to wipe his face completely clean. “Come with me.”
Jack slowly swallowed what little food he still had left in his mouth, pushing out his chair and standing to his feet. Mark's gaze was soft, showing Jack that he didn't intend on getting too handsy with him. The desire was obviously there but Mark didn't want to push the envelope with a new wolf that had no experience with this type of intimacy. That would be a good way to scare him away from sex for a long time.
Mark extended his hand for Jack to take, leading the curious omega towards the back area of Robin's cabin. The wooden tub was surrounded by candlelight, half filled with warm water as if Robin was planning to use it before he had a few unexpected guests. Jack stood in front of the bathtub, rubbing his arms with an obvious blush tinting his cheeks. He shouldn't be as nervous as he is right now since Mark has already seen him without apparel. But he couldn't stop himself from becoming consumed with nerves once he realized that he couldn't exactly bathe in his clothes.
"Jack," Mark began, sensing a swift change in the atmosphere around them. "It's just a bath. But I promise not to look or touch if you don't want me to. I want you to be comfortable around me, and forcing you to do something you aren't ready for would be cruel of me. Would you like me to step outside while you bathe?" He asked, smiling sweetly at his mate. Jack bit his lip, shaking his head. He didn't want to be alone, and that part of him that craved Mark's attention was rearing its ugly head once again. He was nervous, but that didn't mean that he doesn't want Mark to touch him.
"Please stay. I'm just not used to so much..nudity, I guess. Not to say that I don't appreciate yours, it's just that I feel a little inadequate compared to you. You're flawless, and I'm just..me." Jack confessed, anxiously playing with the hem of his borrowed shirt.
The alpha watches Jack's pale hands intently as he fiddles with the cloth, his light eyes downcast as he tries to explain how he feels. The heat on his face is rivaling the warmth of the water, and the omega wishes that Mark would say something to stop his silly stammering.
The alpha places his larger palm on top of Jack's still twitching fingers, inhaling deeply as those crystal blue eyes slowly gaze up to meet his face.
“You have no need to think that you are anything but perfect, Jack. Your eyes are the midnight stars that carry me home in the darkness, and the curves of your body are the only road that my heart wishes to follow.”
Jack can feel himself melt at the words, his heart flutters, and he sighs without realizing it. His pull for the alpha is almost too much to bear, and even if he isn’t quite ready for sex, he still longs to be touched.
Mark pulls his hand away, waiting for Jack to make the first move. It didn't matter if the night ended with passion or not, Mark would still look at Jack with the same warmth that he always has. The omega sucked in a deep breath, mentally psyching himself up to just throw caution to the wind and do this already. It was just a bath. Nothing more.
Jack pulled his shirt up and over his head, letting it fall to the ground carelessly. His eyes stayed glued to the floor as he hooked his quivering fingers into the waistband of his pants and pulled them down. The omega couldn't see if Mark was looking at his nudity, but he could definitely feel the huge spike in arousal that came shortly after. It hung in the air like a thick perfume, dousing them both in its rich scent.
Jack kicked his trousers away, forcing his hands to stay at his side as he lifted his eyes to meet Mark's. The alpha wasn't saying a damn word, but his expression was clearly telling Jack how much he adored his mate's body. The new omega was lean and pale, with little tuffs of hair speckled across his chest. Mark's eyes filter down a bit further, following Jack's happy trail and stopping once he came across the thick curls that tried to cover his modesty. The alpha didn't care much for comparisons when it came to this sort of thing, but Jack was quite appealing for his smaller size.
Mark's gaze finally settled on those pretty round thighs of his, slightly fuzzy but exquisitely squishy and soft. His wide and curvy hips gave him this sultry look about him that Mark was powerless against, and it took every ounce of willpower he had to not pounce on Jack and fuck him raw.
"You're gorgeous, Jack. Truly a sight to behold." Mark purred, staying put despite his rising need to reach out and touch his mate's skin.
With his cheeks still a deep scarlet, Jack reaches up and places his arms around Mark’s neck, and the alpha’s face looks startled by the sudden intimacy. The Omega looks up innocently at him as he takes a small breath.
“Could you help me into the tub? It’s a bit too high for me to step into on my own.”
The alpha blinks and relaxes as he places his strong hands on the omega’s hips and lifts him into the tub. The sound of Jack blissful hum as he feels the warm water wash over his flesh is almost too much for Mark. Heart hammering in his chest, he groans in his throat as he drags blunt nails away from the tender skin, and moves towards the side of the bath until Jack is fully settled in.
“Thank you,” the omega breathes as he begins to sink into the tub up to his nose, bubbles coming up to the surface as he lets puffs of air out of his mouth.
Mark is almost beside himself at everything that Jack is doing, the omega completely unaware of how cute and naturally alluring he is as he begins to enjoy finally getting clean.
The alpha is mesmerized by Jack's hands as they glide effortlessly across his skin. The soap Robin just made is enhancing the omega's natural scent, and it's making Mark weaker by the second. He doesn't even notice the glazed look in his eyes or the way he's chewing on his bottom lip to keep himself somewhat composed. But he does notice the deep growl that bubbled up from his chest.
Mark's eyes widened, his hand flying up to cover his mouth. That noise was unmistakable code for "I'm about to lose my shit". Jack blushed, his hand coming up to grasp Mark's. He's never heard such an alluring sound, but he'd be lying if he said he didn't want to hear it again.
"You know, I'm having a hell of a time trying to wash my back. I could really use some help." The omega murmured, batting his long eyelashes. Whether he meant to openly invite Mark to touch him in a more intimate way was debatable, but it sure was fun to see Mark's loopy grin as he nodded.
Slowly the alpha bends down so that he is kneeling right next to Jack, and again the honey tones of the omega’s scent invade Mark’s nostrils. It is with a slightly trembling hand that the smaller man places the washcloth into, and then leans forward enough to allow full access to his wet and shining back.
The soap suds slide down heavily as Mark moves the cloth in small circles, his body aching at the soft moans Jack makes as he enjoys the gentle rubbing. The alpha’s free hand reaches up and touches the slender neck of his mate and the omega leans into the warm touch, the moans growing louder from his lips.
This wasn't supposed to be sexual, but Mark was at the end of his rope, so to speak. Jack was just too tempting and he didn't have nearly enough willpower to stop his hands from closing around Jack's pale neck. The action wasn't meant to cause the other harm, but it did let Jack know what Mark was after. The omega turned his blue eyes towards his mate, biting his lip in such a seductive way that caused another deep growl to crawl out from Mark's chest.
"Fuck..I'm trying so hard to resist you, but I fucking can't, baby," Mark growled, squeezing around his mate's neck just a little to invite one of those irresistible sounds from Jack's mouth. The omega gasped, reaching out to tangle his hand into Mark's thick hair.
The breathy plea was enough to break down the last shred of willpower he had, and with a groan, he leaned forward, roughly pressing his lips against Jack's in a hungry but unsatisfying kiss. He wanted more than just a few hot kisses to quench his thirst for Jack. He wanted to hear that sweet voice crack with pleasure as he worshipped his gorgeous body.
Mark stood up a little, his lips still moving against Jack's as he lifted the omega out of the tub and wrapped him around his clothed body. The alpha was quickly losing his mind with need, and before he could stop himself he felt his fingers brushing up against Jack's virgin entrance.
The omega whines at the feeling of strong fingertips against his opening, and he squeezes his legs around Mark’s sturdy hips to anchor himself. The alpha growls into the mouth of his mate as he pushes a finger in, his sharp ears listening for any sounds of stress or pain.
Jack grabs at Mark's shoulders and he groans at the feeling. The pleasure is already invading every part of him, from the soles of his feet all the way to the top of his head.
“Alpha,” he whispers as Mark pushes in his finger as far as he dares, the heat and pressure igniting the beast within him.
For once Jack isn’t scared of anything at all. His only desire is to feel as much pleasure as Mark was willing to give. Mark’s chest vibrates as he begins to push in a second finger into the omega’s soft entrance, and the cry from Jack’s mouth let him know to continue.
Mark pressed Jack's back up against the closest wall, holding him tightly as he littered Jack's jawline with gentle bites and rough kisses. His callused fingers slowly began to spread apart, moving in a scissoring motion to stretch Jack out a little bit. He wasn't necessarily concerned with whether or not he received anything in return, his only want was to inflict as much pleasure as he possibly could upon his mate before the boy came. He wanted to show Jack just how good sex between them could be, but perhaps it was better to just stick with the foreplay for now.
Mark's cock twitched inside his pants as Jack let out another drawn-out moan, and the alpha relished the sound as he rubbed at his mate's walls and stretched his fingers apart. The alpha was moving at a moderate pace by now, angling his fingers up to blindly feel around for that squishy little nub that would make Jack scream. His lips curled up into a smirk as soon as he heard that broken yelp, his teeth biting softly into the flesh of Jack's already marked up neck.
"H-holy shit!" Jack gasped, arching his back as Mark rubbed around his prostate. His body was pulled taut like a string, weakly bucking against Mark as he howled in ecstasy. Mark shuddered, loving how desperate his mate sounded.
"God, you're so fucking sexy," Mark growled, his mind long gone as he focused entirely on the sounds pouring out of Jack's mouth. He could feel his walls clenching around his thrusting fingers, drinking up every reaction he could.
The omega was pushing back onto those firm fingers like his very life depended on it, his head reared back and eyes rolling madly. He's never felt pleasure like this and he could barely speak other than the few guttural growls he didn’t even know his throat could make.
Mark groans at each push back onto his hand and every single bead of precum that falls onto his firm stomach from the beautiful creature against him.
“F-fuck, oh god, Mark,” Jack nearly screams as he moves even faster, his mouth opening up in a silent scream each time the alpha pushes in as deep as he can. The omega can’t even tell where he is anymore, his brain completely gone at this point.
His muscles are vibrating so hard they might as well be singing, hot tears falling down his reddening cheeks. It’s only when Mark pushes in a third and final finger that Jack bites hard into the flesh of the alpha’s shoulder. Mark curls all three fingers towards himself, knowing how close Jack truly is.
"Come on, baby. Come for me." Mark purred, nipping Jack's earlobe as he directed his thrusts upward. Any and all coherent thoughts left Jack's mind in an instant, his abused prostate was so sensitive, sending waves of overwhelming pleasure crashing down on him. The omega tensed, his jaw dropping as he shook violently. The weight and intensity of his orgasm was like a truck barreling down on him, and with a damn near animalistic sound, his cock twitched and painted their bellies in hot spunk.
Mark swore under his breath, watching as his mate fell apart in his arms. It was such an erotically beautiful sight, and the alpha could only imagine just how mind-blowing their first time would be. Jack's head was stuck in the clouds, body going slack in Mark's arms. He didn't even care that he was still rock hard and throbbing. Witnessing something like that was more satisfying than a thousand orgasms. The alpha withdrew his fingers, holding Jack up against him as he moved away from the wall to try and find the bed. Jack looked completely fucked out, with glazed over eyes and a dreamy expression stuck on his face. It was the cutest thing Mark had ever seen.
"W-what about you, alpha? I haven't even touched you yet." Jack mumbled as Mark placed his limp body on the mattress.
“But you have touched me,” the alpha whispers as he places gentle kisses on the pink lips of the omega. “You allowed me to worship you, Jack. That’s the best touch that I could ever receive.”
The omega hums happily as the alpha pushes his sweaty hair out of his face and slowly licks his belly completely clean. Then Jack is falling asleep to tender kisses and gentle rubs into his sore muscles, the soft afterglow too powerful for him to fight. Jack's eyes close softly, his body shutting down for a bit to recover from such an intense moment. He barely notices when Mark pulls away to clean himself up and fix whatever mess they had made. But his body curls around Mark's as soon as the alpha slips back into bed, falling into the most peaceful sleep he's had in a while.
It's a few hours later when Jack awakens to the warmth of Mark's lips on his. It's a different sort of affection this time around, and Jack can't help but melt into it. The sun is shining brightly, dousing the interior of the cabin with warm light.
"Good morning, my sun and stars." Mark murmurs against Jack's pink lips, pulling back to nuzzle his scruffy cheek. The alpha's hair is as wild as the wolf within, sticking up every which way like he'd been rolling around on the bed. Jack giggled, knowing that he didn't look any better. His love bites were already healed, but the alpha had left a different sort of mark on him last night. His once conflicted mind was now pulling him in the same direction. He wanted to see this out with Mark, and if this was going to work he'd have to give it his all. Mark was already giving Jack so much, and it's about time that he returned the favor.
The omega can already feel the heartbeat of his alpha, and he wonders if this is because of last night. Did the intimate moment they shared make their bond, or whatever Mark called it, even stronger?
“What can I do to help?”Jack asks brightly, wrapping his arms around his mate’s waist. “Tell me whatever I need to do when we meet with the Elders and I’ll do it.”
Mark smiles at the renewed willingness of his Luna to assists him, and he leans down and nuzzles his soft neck again.
“You don’t have to do anything but be yourself,” the alpha says, peppering kisses across the omega’s throat. “You will be asked questions by them, so be as honest and respectful as you can.”
Jack gives a short nod as Mark pulls away from him to get fresh clothing from the satchel bag. The Omega watches his mate slip into a dark pair of slacks and a looser fitting cream colored shirt, and he hands Jack a much better fitting pair of clothes for the day.
“Robin was kind enough to lend them to us,” Mark says, correctly understanding Jack’s confusion. “You two are about the same build.”
The alpha glances his dark eyes towards the omega’s curvy hips, and then softly chuckles.
“Well, almost the same build.”
Jack blushes, hiding his face in embarrassment from Mark's comment. He's always been told that he had feminine hips, but it wasn't until he met Mark that he knew their full power. The alpha was practically drooling over them like he couldn't wait to sink his nails into those curvy hips once again.
"Is that why I'm an omega? I've always had a few feminine traits that I couldn't explain, and I'm just wondering if I was always meant to be this way. Like the stars saw us and knew that we belonged together. It would have been different if I were anything else, wouldn't it?" Jack asked.
Mark considers the question. It’s a fair one to think about. It was true that Jack’s sweet scent and soft features were amazing to Mark. The way he naturally moved whether man or wolf with a grace and fluid charm made the alpha want to touch him all over.
“Yes, it’s true that you being an omega is what creates a burning need within me,” Mark admits, “But you are so much more than that Jack. You’re kind, incredibly brave, remarkably resourceful, and have an air of silliness that makes my heart smile. Your desire to fight is the strongest I have ever seen. That is the type of Luna I want by my side, and carrying my pups.”
Jack's eyes widen at that last statement. Did he just say pups? As in babies? Could males safely do that? Mark's words were incredibly sweet but the idea that Jack could potentially get pregnant from fooling around with his mate was making his head spin.
"P-pups? That's actually a thing that can happen? I'm a man, Mark. I can't get pregnant." Jack stammered, standing up a little too quickly. Mark's smile fell a bit, moving to steady his mate before he fell over. He figured that Jack would have a hard time understanding something as complex as this. In fact, he wasn't even sure that Jack could conceive since he wasn't born this way. Male omegas have a unique internal set up that mixes the best part of male and female genders. He's not one or the other, he's just Jack. On the outside, he appeared like most males, with a flat chest and external male genitalia. But on the inside, he was completely different. Male omegas have a complete set of working ovaries and a womb in which they carry their developing young. And when in lycan form they are able to give birth just like a female would. It's a bit confusing to someone like Jack, but Ethan would be able to explain it a lot better than Mark could.
“Deep breaths, Jack,” Mark whispers as he holds onto his waist. “Let’s not get too ahead of ourselves. There is plenty of time to talk about those type of things. Besides, you having my babies is far from the only thing that makes you my mate.”
The calming tone of Mark’s voice instantly helps Jack’s heart to slow, and the omega reaches his hand towards the alpha’s handsome face. As if Mark knows what he needs they are kissing each other, and it’s only the gentle knock at the door that breaks them apart.
Robin slowly opens the cabin door, peering in at the couple with a soft smile.
"The elders are waiting for you, Mark. Jack and I will be right behind you unless they seek a more private audience." Robin says, motioning for them to hurry along. The elders aren't exactly patient, especially when it comes to unexpected guests. Mark nods and takes Jack's hand in his, leading him out of the cabin.
It is odd to Jack how natural it is to hold Mark’s hand in his. It’s almost like breathing the same air as the alpha, and the comforting warmth of his fingertips help as they exit the cabin. The walk to where the Elders live isn’t very far away, and Jack moves as quickly as he can to keep up with the other two men, who are talking quietly to each other.
“They are already aware of what happened to Jack’s village,” Robin mutters as they move through the thick trees. “And that Nate is the one who did it. We’re you aware that he attacked more than just the one settlement?”
Mark's face turns gravely serious as he frowns and shakes his head no. The idea that Nate would go so far in his hatred to kill even one human is horrifying enough for the alpha, let alone so many more.