I whimpered when I felt the pack bond snap. It was like air was being pulled out of my lungs forcefully. I was running out of breath. I staggered back and fell out of balance landing on my butt as I saw five burly men take a few steps towards me.
"You have one minute to run out of my land before I let these warriors lose to catch you. And when they catch you, you're dead," my former Alpha said without any emotion.
I weakly pushed myself up not minding the burning pain from my right arm not to mention the recent loss of a pack bond.
"Run, rogue," one of the men says.
The world started to look a little hazy, but I focused on the idea that if I don't move now, I will never see tomorrow's light of day. I turned around and started running in the opposite direction of the men. The whole forest has never felt this foreign to me. The trees just pass by as a blur as I try to run as fast as I can to get out of my old pack's land.
I turned to look behind me when I heard a loud angry growl. Faster, faster, until I crossed the border!. But just as I was about to take another look behind, I plummeted down.
I was rolling down a rocky slope. I did not notice I was running towards the east side of the pack land where the border was the sudden drop of earth that was too low to be a cliff but high enough to break someone's neck.
I landed on a hard thud and immediately pulled myself to sit up thankful for my werewolf genes for the extra strength. I scanned the area and realized I am now in unclaimed land. This is where all rogues live. Rogues are werewolves that have no pack, either they left their pack on their own or were banished for a crime.
A gush of cold air passes by and I shiver not just from the wind but also from the thought that I am now a rogue.
I staggered to stand up and walked in no particular direction. I don't know how long I have been walking but my feet were killing me, and I was starting to see black dots. I leaned on the nearest tree as I heard a growl from behind me. I turned back and saw a huge wolf ready to lunge at me. It's eyes were red, signaling that it had gone wild! I gulped and started running away from it. I shifted into my wolf half leap. My bones realigned and fur sprouted from my pores. I landed softly on my paws, but I never stopped running.
My eyes water when I feel a sting on my right hindleg. I dropped on the ground and saw the rogue took a small chunk of my flesh on its mouth. It has finally caught on me. If I was going to die this way, I would not die without a fight. I tried to lunge on the rogue aiming for a bite on its neck but it quickly deflected my attack. I jumped towards it again trying to aim a little better and my teeth plunged on its soft stomach. The rogue whimpered and fell. I took that opportunity to run again.
I knew I was running very slow because of the pain radiating from the huge wound on my leg. Blood was dripping from it and I was starting to feel lightheaded. I immediately stopped when I felt the sudden change in the air around me. I stiffened. I was on a pack's land.
My eyes widened seeing three muscular men walking towards me. Must be border patrols. I tried to stand up in a fighting position but my legs gave up on me.
"How dare you enter our land, rogue," one of the men growled at me.
I only whimpered and dropped my head on the ground completely. I was going to die here. I was so sure of it.
I don't know if I can even move one muscle from all the bruises and wounds I have collected throughout the run from my pack's land through the rogue area up to here.
"I think it's wounded, Beta," another man said.
"I don't give a shit if that rogue is dying. If it doesn't shift in the next ten seconds, I will murder it myself," the first one replied.
Just my luck, I am facing a Beta, one of the highest positions in a pack. I doubt I will ever survive under his eyes. I willed myself to shift back into my human form. A strangled gasp leaves my lips as I feel immense pain from shifting. The pain from my wound even doubled as I am weaker in this form.
I remain lying on the ground on my stomach as if to hide most of my body as I am completely naked.
"It's a girl, Beta," the same person who noticed I was wounded said.
The Beta only replied with a growl. I can feel them eyeing me even though I was not looking at them. I felt someone approach me and my right arm was gripped tightly lifting me off the ground.
"Why are you here?"
I stared back at an angry face. He must be the Beta as I felt a strong aura from him. I opened my mouth to answer him but no sound came out. I saw his eyebrows strain in confusion.
He released my arm with a hard shove sending me back to the ground. The last thing I remembered before my head hit a hard object was the angry growl from the Beta.
DARKNESS was the first thing that greeted me the moment I got my consciousness back. I lay naked on the hard and cold floor. I gather all the strength I have left to lift myself up in a sitting position.
I knew I was in a cell. The stale smell and humid air weren't just an indication of that. Bars block my exit. But if this was a dungeon of some sort, why do I not feel any other living being? It was like I was the only one locked up here.
The only light that slashed through the darkness must be a single lightbulb from the left of the hallway. However faint it was, it was the only thing bringing me hope that I was still on Earth not yet dead.
I moved backwards to the wall when I heard footsteps walking towards my cell. The Beta stood just before the bars looking down at me. I hug myself as if to save modesty.
"The Alpha wants to meet you, rogue. If you misbehave in front of him, it's death you face," the Beta said stiffly.
I didn't answer and merely looked at his boots. They were dusty and worn out.
My eyes moved up when I heard an angry growl. Another person was walking in the hallway. It must be the Alpha. I brave myself to face the leader of this pack.
I gasped when the man stopped in front of my cell. A frown marred my face as I took in the whole of him. He was very tall, taller than the Beta. His chiselled face was expressionless as he looked directly into my eyes. My eyes widened when a realization dawned at me.
Something suddenly stabbed me in the heart. Sparks exploded throughout my whold body.
The man before me is my mate!
My breathing started to quicken and my heart started beating even faster. He was my mate and yet he looked at me with no emotion in his eyes. I grew confused as to why I could not smell him? The first sign a werewolf will get when he has found his mate is a smell so different from anybody else. And yet I do not smell him.
The only reason why I believe he is my mate was the sudden electricity that ran through my body when I looked into his eyes. They were as black as the night and they were pulling me into him. Moon Goddess, please don't trick me.
"This is the rogue, Alpha."
I turned my attention to the Beta when he spoke. He sported a confused look as if trying to decipher why his Alpha remained silent and just stared at their prisoner.
"What is so special about this one that it remains in our prison?"
The sound of his voice brought warmth to my skin and yet the words he spoke broke my heart. Does he not recognize the mate bond between us? Doesn't he sense me?
"No rogue ever dared to enter our land. This one bears a mark, Alpha," the Beta answered as his eyes linger on my right arm.
I looked down at my bloodied arm and cringed at the memory of how I got the fresh wound on it. It was not healing as quickly as my other wounds because a silver knife was used to engrave a mark on it.
"What mark?" the Alpha asked.
I saw the Beta take something from his pocket. A key. He was going to enter my cell. I bunched myself even closer to the wall as he started walking towards me. I flinched when he crouched down and pulled my right arm towards him.
A low growl escaped from the man who was now standing behind the Beta. I ignored him and tried to pull my arm back but the Beta was stronger than me.
"Look at this. How is she still alive?" the Beta asked, looking up at his Alpha.
I hold my breath as I wait for his reply. And yet seconds tick by and we hear no answer from him.
"Where did you get this mark, rogue?" the Beta turned to me when the Alpha remained silent.
I gulped and looked over at the Alpha. His dark eyes now stare directly at my exposed mark. I tugged my arm and he moved his gaze to my face. For a moment I thought I saw a touch of softness there but it was gone as if it had never come.
"My old pack," I whisper back at the Beta.
"What do you mean?" he questioned further.
"It's law that every banished wolf gets this mark before they are thrown on unclaimed territory," I explained.
The Beta frowns at me as if I were saying nonsensical things. But his questions bring more confusion to me. Every wolf knew this. Banished wolves get marked as a sign of their crime.
"What was the name of your old pack?" he asked with a stiff voice.
"South Forest," I replied breathlessly.
"The South Forest Pack does not exist."
I frowned up at him and tugged my arm once again. This time he let me go.
"I am- I was from that pack," I say angrily.
"That pack does not exist, rogue. Well, not anymore."
I was about to retort to him when I heard him growling -
"I'm going to give you one last chance, be a good girl and tell me, where the fuck you come from!"