Bosch threw his entire body onto the tree, causing it to snap. As it fell, I leapt to the next tallest tree, barely managing to get a good grip before crawling back up into a safe height. My pursuer gawked at my jump which was impossible even for wolf people, much less a human.
His next approach was to run up the tree, in which I hopped onto the next one. He knew then that there was a reason why I was staying calm. He followed after me and pranced at the tree I was standing on. The minute he made contact, I hurled my weight onto its shoulders, causing him to lose his grip and fall from the massive height.
Right before we hit the ground, I focused energy in my legs to push off of him to ease my landing and double his fall. It was a sizable fall even for someone his size and I could hear the pain when his body hit the snow. He was in slight shock and I took the moment to drive my dagger on the surface along his side, skimming his fur and stopping at his neck.
"You're going to take me back to the Border," I threatened by pushing the fang against his coat. "And we will forget this happened."
Bosch blinked before dropping back in defeat when he acknowledged I wasn't completely "human" at the present.
"You'll never make it there. You are to be killed on the spot." He placed his head back down on the snow.
"Killing me will not resolve anything. Ralphie won't just swallow it. What are you going to do then? Civil war amidst an invasion from the vampires? Did the Alphas even think this through?" I shouted though there was no need. His hearing was perfectly fine less perhaps the ringing from the concussion of the fall.
"If you can do this," Brosch said as he kept eye contact with me, "how can we not be afraid?"
I pulled my weapon back and retreated a few yards back. It was safer for both of us to be separated.
"But we are on the same team." I wonder if reasoning would get through to him. "I am no vampire."
"But you are not wolf either," he growled, gathering the strength to get back up. "You are from the land of vampires."
"The Alphas knew that already," I defended.
"But you hid the fact that you bore those Bloodsuckers a son. Not just any son, but a monster..." he bit through his teeth. "The entire reason we lost the First War was because of those monsters!"
"My son saved Ralphie."
"That's just an excuse. The Alphas know you brought him over to learn our terrain so they could attack easier. Otherwise they wouldn't have come so quickly. You are the traitor. And traitors will not be tolerated!"
Bosch charged again and I sidestepped onto the snow. I checked to make sure that the vial in my pocket didn't break. I'd be in big trouble if it did.
He charged again like a bull and with my inhuman strength, swung myself onto him and applied pressure in my arm that was around his neck. My choke on him didn't loosen until his hind legs began to give out and he collapsed altogether.
When he didn't move, I slowly released my clasp on him and stepped away. It didn't seem like he was going to take me where I wanted to go. Plus, he should be tired out by now.
I turned in the direction of the Border, but halted my steps when the snow behind me shuffled. Bosch got up and shook the snow off his mane and I pulled out my weapon and assumed a caution stance.
"I don't want to have to-"
"The others will kill you on sight," Bosch interrupted in wolf tongue. "Be careful, Luna."
Instead of putting up another fight, he turned around and walked back in the direction we came from. I was relieved he didn't force me to commit something I didn't want to. It was fortunate that Bosch didn't really have a killing intent. Otherwise I might not come out unscathed like I am now.
As soon as he was gone, I slid down onto the snow and gasped for breath. Never in a million years did I imagine going head on in a fight with a wolf or anyone for that matter. I'd never felt stronger and vulnerable at the same time.
To think it was my blood that created a Pureblood and by drinking Pure blood I could actually gain the strength of a vampire without necessarily being one. I had never considered such. Never in a million years.
I took out the vial and took another sip. Immediately, the tiny scratches on the back of my hand healed and I could feel the cold around me no longer. Rather than feeling warmer, it was as if my temperature tolerance was adjusted to the cold. Seriously, I could abandon my furs and still feel like summer.
A strange thought came to my head and I drew out Ralphie's fang and grazed it against my arm. It created a tiny cut and blood oozed out before my flesh grew back together. Frightening indeed. Heal time was less than a few seconds.
As a surge in energy coursed through my body, I sprinted in the direction of the Border. There were a few wolf camps along the way, but I did my best to avoid any contact as not to risk what Bosch claimed. I have no clue how many people are aware of my assassination plot though perhaps not too many know yet considering that no one was after me after Bosch.
Nero and Evie would never betray me like that. It was just a coincidence the timing was so close. I was headed straight for Ralphie who'd probably be the only one who could clear this up. But what Bosch warned earlier concerned me. Who were the others?
Honestly, only a handful of them knew about Nero and my bloodline. It couldn't have been Diane and I'm praying with all my heart it wasn't Ares or Bryant. No one else would've seen them with Nero's abilities. If it were one of them, I really wouldn't know if I should fight or just surrender. I'm not ready to be pitted up against friends and certainly not ready to pit Ralphie up against them either. He would do that for me. He'd do anything.
My heart grew soft with the thought. In the few years I've met him, he gave me more love than I received in the twenty something years before we met. But still, if I wasn't somehow his mate, I wonder if he'd love me this much. How are mates decided anyway? Once mates, mates for life. So I guess I don't have to worry. He won't turn his back on me either way.
But what if my existence endangers his family? He wouldn't decide to throw away his life after taking mine right?
No. That's not Ralphie.
Of course Ralphie wouldn't hurt me like that. He'd probably just take the lone wolf route with his mate and travel together away from the packs. That's more like it.
I took another sip of blood and trudged along. So it seems I needed to drink every few hours to maintain the vampire level of alertness. Otherwise, the cold would get to me and I'd have strange ideas. My mind also ends up wandering a bit too when I'm alone. It's only been five days of traveling alone and I could feel slight depression creeping up. Ironic how I used to wish to have privacy and now that I got it, it's not as great as I had hoped.
I'm already going crazy over a few days of wandering solo because I've gotten so adjusted to pack culture. I took another few sips from the half filled bottle. As opposed to regular vampire blood, it wasn't hard ingesting Pure Blood. In fact, it was sweet like syrup and almost like honey with the consistency of water. Not bad for something that supplied me with strength and also served as an alternative to food.
There was only half left so I needed to be more sparing but I really wanted to make my way as fast as I could to Ralphie's side. As I was about to place the lid back on the bottle, a large shadow-like creature swiped at me.
In my attempt to dodge the swing, the creature made contact with the bottle instead of my arm and shattered the crystal onto the snowy floors. I leapt backwards only to have five large claws scratch my back. I sidestepped to avoid the third attack that was aimed from overhead and tumbled to evade the fourth but unfortunately couldn't prevent the long gash along the side of my chest from the fourth attacker.
My entire torso would've been shredded if I hadn't ingested any of what Nero gave me.
Normally, the stinging sensation from the wound would last a few seconds before the wounds repaired itself. However, perhaps because I sustained injuries of greater multitude, it was taking longer. The pain seared at my sides and it took everything to not scream out as I took another dive into the snow to avoid the shadows jumping at me.
They were wolves, but with their speed, I could barely make them out especially when everything looked like a blur. I was losing blood so the only thing I could manage well was evade further attacks and head towards the Border.
My sense of direction soon faded and my destination switched to anywhere really just to lose them. Four was more than I could handle at once. Their sneak attack gave them the upper hand but they were executing all caution considering that Bosch wasn't able to complete the task alone. They did themselves well to keep their guard up.
Soon the scratches on my back healed themselves up and I could flex my muscles and run a little faster. The gash on my side remained an open wound which prevented optimal sprinting posture but it didn't hinder my performance. By the time it healed too, my heightened senses activated themselves and I could feel the presence of others nearby.
I turned my head to see four wolves racing after me and immediately butterflies fluttered in my stomach. The terrain was starting to look familiar and I recognized that it was only some distance before we reached the Border. No wonder they were tensed. If I reached Ralphie first, they'd fail their mission and wage civil unrest. However, if they got me first, they'd just have to drag my corpse away before any others found out.
How did they have so much energy? I could've sworn we ran an entire day without rest or food. I would know since I was able to create some distance when nightfall came, but now we were already at the crack of dawn and still at it.
"STOP RUNNING!" one of the wolves yelled in wolf tongue before panting. "Please! For the good of the pack!" She was almost out of breath. I paid her no heed. The Border was less than an hour's reach. I could almost see Ralphie again after so many weeks.
He would hold me in his arms and hug me until I couldn't breathe and I'd want to stay like that more than anything in the world. His warmth would penetrate the harsh cold of the snow and aggression I've been faced with for the past week. He would comb his large hand through my hair and kiss me on the forehead, whispering how much he missed me and that we wouldn't have to be separated again because he wouldn't allow it.
Just a little more distance and I could have all that again. There was no way I was going to stop.
And then it hit. From the side, a large boulder hurdled me off my feet and onto the frozen grounds. I focused on the point of impact, but was instead met with a large paw pressed against my chest, cracking a rib or two. I think two.
I pushed on the hand applying pressure on me, but no matter how much strength I exerted, it wouldn't budge. My arms were tired but I still had strength so it was just that he was too strong. I should've taken a larger gulp of blood had I known this would happen.
The wolf atop me stretched his mouth wide open and I shut my eyes as his jaw clamped down. I could hear the sound of a snap and red spilling across the white background, but my body didn't register the pain.
As soon as I turned to see who came to my rescue, I was frozen in horror. It couldn't be him. It can't be him.
It mustn't be him.
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