BDH4 The Moon

You ever get so embarrassed that you want to bury yourself in the sand somewhere. I literally just wanted to find the nearest bed and go hide. I felt sick to my stomach that I allowed this to happen. I felt sick to my stomach that I trusted Prince. There's no time to run. There's no time to hide.

In a matter of seconds all of these important people are up on the balcony with us. The entire crowd below is watching to see what is about to happen.

All the while I'm covered in red wine.

"My name is Fang," a member of the Alpha's pack says, "As many of you know you've been invited here in hopes that one of you will be chosen to be the next Beta of the Vanderbilt pack. The Vanderbilt pack has existed for hundreds of years. My pack has succeeded in being the most powerful pack in the United States. So please bear with my brother Walid as this is one of the most important decisions that he has to make in his life. It may take a few days. It may take a few years. Though this process may be long and challenging at times we hope that it is an enjoyable one for all parties involved..."

Fang continues on with his speech. He's handsome. He looks just like Walid except slightly smaller in stature. You can tell these Vanderbilt werewolves. They look important and strong for the most part. All of them are muscular. All of them are bigger men then the others in the room. Fang seems like a representation of them. Strong, masculine, forceful and direct in his speech. He's letting us know in his speech that it's an honor for us to be here. He's letting us know bluntly that we should better be damn proud that we are even being considered for this position. His mate Amina hangs onto his back watching the process. Like Fang, she is tall and muscular in her own feminine way. These people look like some sort of Greek Gods or something.

And as I look at these Olympians I feel lost...

I sink further to the back of the guys who are lining up. They are happy to let me step behind them fortunately. Everyone wants to be seen by the important Vanderbilt wolf pack. Everyone wants some sort of attention. I just want to get out of here.

Maybe they won't notice me.

"Beta wolves. One at a time, please step forward and introduce yourselves," the older looking Vanderbilt wolf says.

My heart skips a beat. I can't introduce myself to the Vanderbilts looking like this. I just can't. My heart is screaming especially when I see that all the other Betas step aside to let Prince go first. It's almost like they are intimidated by Prince. They have a right to be. I watch as a few of the Vanderbilts react to how striking Prince is. I think the two females in the group actually verbally express it.

"I'm Prince of the Los Angeles pack," Prince says.

That's when Prince does something that I'm shocked at. He walks right up to Walid, bends over and kisses Walid's feet. He actually KISSES Walid's boot. My eyes get wide at that moment surprised that this boy is doing something like that.

What even annoys me more is that Walid seems to like Prince doing that. This cocky smile spreads on Walid's face.

"Never had someone kiss my feet before," Walid laughs.

"You should expect to be treated like a king," Prince responds.

He smiles, walking backwards to get back in line with the others. Walid and the other Vanderbilts seem a little taken back by him. They have to be impressed. I mean what the fuck wasn't there to be impressed about.

One after another the boys go up to introduce themselves. Ian and his two goons don't hesitate to bully their way to the front.

"I'm Johan, from the Miami Pack."

"I'm Matty, from the San Antonio Pack."

Johan and Matty were assholes. They both look similar. White boys who were probably given everything because they were cute and probably popular. They were pretty boys just like Ian. I realize how fake and corny they are when they follow Prince's example and kiss Walid's feet. I roll my eyes so hard. There is nothing really even slightly unique or different about Johan and Matty. They don't stand out. They are just pretty, pale looking, blonde handsome boys. At lease Ian has his striking dark complexion. Maybe that's why they are up Ian's ass. Maybe they are attempting to seem edgy or something. I don't know.

There are few other people that go up next. There are about four or five young looking boys that kind of makes me sick to my stomach. I can tell they seem out of place by how they all seem to go up to the Vanderbilt pack in one big group. It's clear they are kind of afraid to stand on their own.

After the kid goes up I notice Karamo go up. I'm actually rooting for him. When he introduces himself to the Vanderbilt pack there isn't much of a reaction. The Vanderbilts definitely don't seem really all that friendly. The one guy, Timus I believe his name is, gives Karamo a slight smile but that's all that there is.

After Karamo, more and more boys go up. It seems like every boy gets more handsome. Every boy stands out a little bit more than the rest. Even if they aren't handsome or they don't stand out, at least they aren't covered in stains. I realize that I can't hide forever. Soon it's down to me and this other boy.

The other boy is handsome. He looks over at me.

"You want to go first?" he asks me.

Does he not notice I'm covered in fucking wine?

I shake my head, "After you."

The boy nods and flashes me white teeth. He has to be one of the few masculine Betas in the group besides me. He is a little bit more muscular then the other boys. Even though he is handsome he does have a baby face but in a handsome way. He has olive skin, a lot lighter than mine and I want to say he looks Middle Eastern or something. He looks sort of like Zayn Malik in a way. He has dark eyebrows and jet black hair. Unlike most of the other Betas he also has a goatee and looks a little scruffy.

His clothing is what gets to me. He has on a fitted burgundy suit that looks expensive as all fuck. It is tailor made specifically for him.

"My name is Basil..." he starts off.

"From the Alaska pack," one of the Vanderbilts finishes.

This guy Basil was the only one who they seemed to recognize by face. Whispers form among the other Betas. I'm not sure why. People seem a little shocked that this guy Basil is here. I watch as even Walid seems a little uneasy at that moment.

"Is this some sort of joke?" he asks Basil.

I'm confused. It's almost like Walid is offended or something. He steps forward a little bit in a threatening sort of way. There is history here. I'm not sure what kind of history is here but there definitely is some sort of history here.

Basil shakes his head, "No joke. I was invited."

Walid gives him a weird look. It's super awkward. I'm not sure what this is all about to be honest.

Soon Basil steps back however and I realize that I'm the last one left. I pray that maybe they don't see me but all of the Vanderbilts eyes turn to me. I guess it's hard not to spot the only person here wearing a color that isn't red. Even though I'm covered with a huge red wine stain that isn't enough. I stick out like a sore fucking thumb.

I walk forward and I notice the immediate laughter from Ian, Johan and Matty. Ian and his dumb ass friends clearly are entertained by it and they are drawing attention. I turn to Prince. He doesn't smile. He's acting as though he had nothing to do with this. I didn't know what was more annoying. Ian teasing or Prince acting like he was some perfect angel.

"I am Yaser, from the Pittsburgh pack," I state.

All these eyes on me. The Vanderbilts stare at me, the other Betas are staring at me and the guests below are staring up at me. Ian and his friends are still laughing and what's worse is that their laughter is spreading to a couple of other people who are noticing what they are laughing at. I look like a fucking bum.

I'm so embarrassed.

"What happened to you, Yaser?" Walid asks me.

His eyes stare directly at my clothes when he talks. If I thought, he wouldn't have noticed I was wrong.

"Disgusting," the female Vanderbilt who Dakota called Naomi states.

Naomi gives me a stare that doesn't seem to hide her disgust. I mean ok, it was a really bad stain, but was it that bad? I guess it was pretty ugly. Prince had made sure to spill the entire cup all over the white. He'd made sure that it was in there really good.

"I had a fight with the wine and I lost," I respond.

There is an awkward silence for a minute.

Then something surprising happens. The Vanderbilts start laughing. Not all of them laugh but a few do. It's mostly the male Vanderbilts who find this funny. Naomi and the girl Amina from the airport just stare blankly at me.

"Is that supposed to be funny?" Naomi asks.

"Relax Amina," the Vanderbilt wolf named Qadir says, "You guys take your pomp and circumstance too serious. He looks a hot mess and it's hilarious."

Naomi rolls her eyes, "I didn't know we were looking for a comedian as the Beta wolf of this wolf pack. Just because we are dogs don't mean we have to roll around with trash."

I'm beyond embarrassed. When Naomi says what she says the crowd erupts in laughter. They are all laughing at me. They are all fucking making fun of me. Ian and his friends are the loudest. Ian is damn near pointing at me and laughing. I've never felt so embarrassed in my life. It's one of those moments that you'll never forget. I was a joke. I was a running joke to these people and I didn't feel out of place.

Why had Dakota brought me here? Why the fuck was I apart of this conversation?

I wasn't like these boys. I wasn't some beautiful passive wallflower. I thought I was handsome back home but these boys were all on a different level. I couldn't compete with them. I just couldn't.

My eyes are darting across the room trying to see where the closest exit is. The laughter is still going on. It's going on for way too long.

That's when Walid gives Naomi a hard look.

"You don't know what I'm looking for, do you?" he asks her with a hard stare.

He's aggressive and he shuts her down so hard. All the laughing had stopped. All the smiles have stopped when everyone hears Walid's tone that he uses. He's strong and abrasive even in his voice. I can tell that people immediately realize how serious he is.

Naomi whispers out a low, "No sir."

She stares at the ground.

"Good. Now shut the fuck up and don't assume shit," Walid states.

His dominance is clear. It's clear when Naomi slinks back and stares at the ground. It's clear when the other Vanderbilts step away from Naomi as though wanting to make sure Walid's wrath stayed on her. No one is smiling. No one is laughing anymore. Not even Ian looks like he can really

"I apologize sir."

"Get the fuck out of my sight," Walid tells her, "Before I really get mad."

"Yes sir."

The room separates as Naomi leaves. I can tell she's embarrassed especially with Walid snapping on her like that. I can't help but to feel relieved. Either Walid really hated when people assumed shit or he was standing up for me being bullied.

Either way every part of me just wants to thank him.

Walid stares at me hard for the next moment, "Yaser?"


The way he says my name. It's the sexiest thing in the world. Walid's voice is so deep. It's so masculine. His tone is this deep dark tone. I am blown away by how sexy it is. I went from having the most embarrassing moment in my life to having a kind of cute one.

He shakes his head, "If you want to leave and change out of your clothes, you are more than welcome. Because you do kind of look crazy right now."

There it was.

Embarrassment again. I don't think he means it to embarrass me. He's just being blunt. He's being honest and for some reason it's probably even more embarrassing then what Naomi says.

I don't hesitate.

I take his offer and leave out of there as quickly as possible.

There is a knock on my bedroom door. It's the same knock that has been knocking every ten minutes for the past three hours. It's night time. It's Dakota.

"Go away," I state.

"Open the goddam door," Dakota says.

I ignore him. I'm happy that my mother packed some basketball shorts and a t-shirt for me. I am laying in this grand ass bed in this grand ass castle but at least I have my basketball shorts. There was no reason that this bedroom had to be so big. There was huge fireplace that was going. There is this expensive rug in front of the fireplace. There was a desk made of cherry oak. All I needed right now was a goddam Corona and a nice football game. That's what I wanted to do right now.

I didn't want to be here. I hated this fucking place and I was starting to really resent Dakota for bringing me here.

"Go away..." I tell Dakota again.

"If you don't open the door I'll just get one of the staff to open it with a master key," Dakota states.

Dakota is damn persistent so I'm not surprised that he would actually go ahead and try to have someone open the door. I walk over to the door at that moment and open it. Dakota is still in his tuxedo but his tie if loosened around his neck.

"What do you want?"

Dakota walks past me rudely and makes his way to the bed. He posts himself up against the bed. He is silent for a few seconds as though trying to think of the words to come up with. Maybe he was surprised that I actually opened the door and lost his train of thought. After a few seconds he stares back up at me with that beautiful skin tone and those emerald green eyes.

"I'm sorry that happened to you," he tells me.

He bites down his lower lip. It's the first time that Dakota really apologized to me sincerely. He used to do it sarcastically when he was training me how to be a werewolf back in the day.

"Are you really?" I ask him.

"Of course I am," Dakota states, "I should have warned you. These wolves...they can be...evil sometimes."

I'm not sure if Dakota is referring to Prince, Ian or even Naomi. I haven't even been here a day and it's clear that I'm stacking up my enemy list already.

"No shit," I state turning around, "I don't think I can do this."

"Yas..." he starts off.

"NO!" I reply, "I can't do this. I'm not like these fucking other Betas. Take your clothes off..."


"Take your clothes off," Dakota tells me, "We're going for a run."


The woods in Vanderbilt aren't like the woods in Pittsburgh. I'm not interrupted by the disgusting smells of industry. I'm not distracted by cars. I run free. My red paws crunch deep in the dirt. Dakota is running beside me. I never feel so free as when I'm running with Dakota. Nothing else matters when we run together. Nothing else matters when we are just being wolves.

For some reason I seem faster in these trees. Even being a large wolf I just feel completely dwarfed by the emerald trees. I'm so careless out here and so happy. My tongue is halfway out of my mouth as I'm running beside Dakota. He challenges me at times pushing my speed and other times he lags behind as though just watching me enjoy myself. The Vanderbilt forest seems to go on forever. No matter how far we run it doesn't matter. There is more space. There is no end to this.

This was paradise and I've never felt so completely free of everything. Everything here is so beautiful. Everything is so brown and green and white. Nature is dirty and disgusting and that's how I like to be. The snow patches are something different as well. Maybe that's why I don't see a patch of ice. I find myself slipping and sliding as a wolf into a batch of bushes.

I'm not surprised when the white wolf begins to transform right in front of my face. Dakota's fur shrinks into his skin. His muzzle shortens and becomes a nose and a mouth. His mane disappears. His front legs turn into arms and his hind legs expand and contort to become legs.

He walks up to me and pets me. His hands are so soft on my fur.

"Are you ok?" Dakota asks me.

I'm the next to transform out of my red wolf figure. As soon as I become a human I grab Dakota playfully. I don't know what comes over me. I'm so happy he brought me out here to run. Dakota knows me. Dakota knows that running out here would make me feel so much better.

I pull him down into the dirt.

"Now I am!"

"Yas! What the hell!" He complains at first.

We roll around in the dirt for a few minutes dirtying ourselves up. After a few seconds of being surprised by it I realize that a smile spreads across Dakota's face. He's giving in and he's starting to like it. Laughter comes from both of us as we find ourselves tumbling down a hill. We roll around and wrestle in the dirt.

Dakota stops our tumbling and I realize he's on top of me.

His dick is pressed up between my legs. His eyes look deeply into mine. The two of us have been laughing so hard that when we stop rolling we are still laughing over memories of how fun that was. Maybe that's why he feels so comfortable laying on top of me. His warm body is pressed up against me and he doesn't even realize. His lips are so close to mine. He's laughing and I can smell his breath pressed up against the side of my cheek. It smells so fucking good.

"I can stay like this forever," I tell him.

I'm not sure if I mean dirty and in the mud. I'm not sure if I mean pressed up against Dakota. Maybe I mean a little bit of both. Maybe both of those thoughts makes Dakota uncomfortable all of a sudden. Dakota rolls off of me and lays next to me, pressing his ass cheeks against the dirt and looking up at the moon.

"When Walid chooses you these will be your woods," he tells me, "Through him, you'll own these woods."

Funny how he brings up Walid at a time like this. I sigh a little bit. It's not the fact that I'm not excited about the idea of Walid choosing me to be his Beta. What bothers me is the fact that Dakota is supporting Walid choosing me to be his Beta. I know it sounds stupid. Maybe I'm just in my emotions. I just want Dakota not to be pushing me away so hard.

"He's not going to choose me," I state.

"He'd be an idiot not to choose you," Dakota responds.

I laugh thinking Dakota is making some sort of joke and sarcastically state, "Right because I'm the catch. You have all those wealthy looking pretty boys and he's going to end up choosing me...a dog who likes to roll around in the mud for fun."

"You're a lot more than that," Dakota tells me, "Look up in the sky. What do you see..."


"There," he says pointing, "Right there."

"A full moon."

"Yes. Your father and me used to go running the same way that I run with you," Dakota explains and sighs, "I was a little cub back then. I could barely keep up. Sometimes I'd lose myself and your father would say all I had to do was howl at the moon. And he'd know where I was. He'd come find me. Because the moon gives werewolves power. We are everywhere. So when you say you don't belong somewhere that's a lie. Anywhere the moon is, is where you belong. And the moon is everywhere."

Dakota rarely talked about his relationship with my father. I sit up at that moment and look over at him. He's still lying flat on his back. His hard abs are crunched up a little bit. His soft cock is straddling his thigh. He brings his strong biceps behind his head and hangs his head up a little bit.

"I don't remember much about my father. He was always gone," I stated.

"He was the Alpha of our pack. He had to keep things running," Dakota explains, "The pack is everything."

"Is that why I'm here?" I ask, "For the reputation of the pack."

"That's what you've been thinking huh?" Dakota asks but before I answer he just sighs, "Yes. And no. I promised your father that I'd take care of you if anything happened to him."

I remember the picture in the cabin of Dakota and my father. Dakota was just a few years older than I was but he was old enough to run with my father at the time. I wasn't. I wonder how it would be to run with my father.

"You can take care of me back home," I stated.

"I can't give you what Walid can give you," Dakota explains, "This isn't about me. This is about you. I promised your father I would help you find your pride as wolf."

"I'm proud...back home. With you..."

I reach over to Dakota. Why the fuck am I touching his arm right now? Why the fuck do I caress it gently. I'm not sure if Dakota realizes it. He sits up next to me. He seems uncomfortable at that moment. I am scared that he is going to actually get up and walk away but he doesn't. He's never really opened up to me like this before and it's kind of scary.

"Your father wanted you to have the world," Dakota explains, "Look around you. Look at these woods. They are the thickest anywhere. No humans. You can be the Beta of that. You can be the 2nd in command of all of this. Walid can give you this. Walid can give you greatness. And after two years of running with you I know that you deserve that more than anyone else. You deserve everything. Everything under the moon. And I'm going to make sure you get it."

Dakota's sense of pride is so deep. He feels responsible for me. I get it now. Maybe it's because we were the only two wolves left in our pack. Maybe it's because he promised my father he would help me.

I look up at that moon. Maybe Dakota was right. Maybe I deserved everything. Who's to say that I didn't deserve it?

I deserved everything under the moon.

The next morning, I wake up in a better mood. I don't get smart with Nadia when she pulls me in the room.

"No smart comments?" she states after a while, "No attitude?"

"Let's get this day started. Let's impress the Alpha..."

Nadia and Nadim both give me a slight smile. Today I think they want to go back to basics. They put me in a dark red jump suit and put this expensive fur over me. Nadia lets me know that the fur is borrowed and tells me to make sure none of the 'hateful pups' spills anything on it. I have to admit that I feel a lot more confident today.

It takes three hours to get ready early in the morning and all of this is for breakfast. It has become clear that at every part of the day I had to be on point. After seeing what these other boys are doing I realize that I have to step my game up and keep it up. There was a lot of fucking competition.

Dakota escorts me down to breakfast. He's not allowed to eat with the other Betas supposedly. We are supposed to be having a group breakfast with Walid. A lot of the other boys are with their guardians outside of the breakfast hall. I swear at that moment I see two twins. I recognize them as August and Augustine from the New York Pack. They are both really handsome and I could swear that I've seen them on television somewhere before. They are rehearsing like they would be rehearsing for a role. They actually have cue cards up and everything. I had no idea it was that serious. What the fuck could they possibly be studying? Walid 101 or something?

In the distance I notice Ian Page and his idiot friends. They are mean mugging Prince right now. I guess a lot of the other boys are as well. I don't know why but I'm assuming maybe after I left the party Prince got a lot more attention from the Vanderbilts. Prince was the favorite as far as first impressions goes and I think Ian was realizing that. I was kind of happy. He can spend his time hating on someone else besides me.

"Yas! What's up buddy?" a voice says.

I turn to see Karamo standing at a distance waving at me to come over. He is standing with an older lady. The lady looks a little crazy with rugged dreadlocks and what not. The lady is powdering Karamo's face even as he walks as though Karamo didn't already have enough make up on.

I look over at Dakota. Dakota brushes my fur and runs his hand through my hair. I'm not sure if he's just trying to fix my hair or if he was trying to get a better look at me. He smiles and nods as though approving me.

"Go ahead," Dakota says.

I turn around and walk away towards the breakfast hall stopping halfway to walk with Karamo. Karamo stares at me, then stares at Dakota who is still watching me from down the hallway, then he stares back at me again.

"Who the hell is that?" Karamo asks.

"My guardian," I respond.

"You have the sexiest guardian here. Jesus Christ. He can groom my fur...any day," Karamo tells me.

A part of me wants to laugh at Karamo's honesty but a part of me feels a little territorial when it comes to Dakota. It has just been me and Dakota for so long that I forget that other people would probably find Dakota really attractive too.

"Calm down," I respond, in a teasing tone, "We're here for Walid remember."

"Speaking of Walid, I was so pissed when you didn't come back yesterday," Karamo responds, "The rest of the party was crazy awkward. The Vanderbilts spent the entire time kissing Prince's ass. It was like some big ass circle jerk."

"Really? I don't get Walid being the kind of guy to do that," I respond.

"No. Not Walid. The other Vanderbilts. Walid left shortly after you did. Everyone was really disappointed."

We make our way into the breakfast hall. The hall is beautiful. The plates are out there but no food. Butlers are already filling up the glasses with water by the time we walk in.

"He left his own party?" I ask Karamo.

Karamo nods and leans in, "Walid has this wall up. Supposedly it's really hard for him to let people in. I think he's resisting this whole thing to be honest. It's going to be tough..."

Karamo and I aren't the only ones gossiping. It seems like a bunch of the other guys are slowly starting to form groups as well with one another. The twins stick together as I assumed. Ian is with Johan and Matty. The young wolves all gather around and look awkward as shit. Basil has made friends with the other few more masculine looking Betas. Then there is Prince. Prince doesn't talk to anyone. He's too good to talk to anyone. He just sits at the seat right next to the head of the table. I'm assuming he's making sure that he takes his seat right next to the head of the table.

I'm not surprised when Ian, being as petty as he is sits across from Prince. He wants to make sure that he isn't out shined right now.

"Why do I have the feeling that a lot shadier shit is going to happen before this is all over?" I ask Karamo noticing the way that Ian and his boys were staring at Prince.

"We should probably stand clear of the fray," he says.

By the fray I think he was referring to the obvious tension between Prince and Ian at the front of the table. I guess Ian was really feeling some type of way that the other Vanderbilts were seemingly favoring Prince. Ian was an idiot though. From what I saw yesterday it was clear that Walid had his own mind and I don't think he was taking very many opinions from the other Vanderbilts.

Karamo and I sit at the other end of the table. In the next few minutes raw meat is brought out. The meat is gently seasoned and dripping with blood. Every part of me wants to just dig in and rip the meat off the plate like a wild dog. I don't do that though. It wouldn't be what a Beta would do. I watch as the other wolves use their manners to wait until our host walks in.

Walid is late. He has on a fur coat that kind of matches mine with no shirt underneath it. His pants are sagging showing off the sexiest V-area underneath his crotch. One of the staff takes his coat off. He's covered with tattoos. His swagger is something of legend when he gets to the front of the table. He looks around the room at everyone one good time, takes a long sip of wine and then starts eating.

He seems reluctant when he opens his mouth and says, "Good morning."

He doesn't seem very interested in anyone. I think Walid would rather be anywhere but here right now. He eats the way that I wish I could eat. He picks up the meat with his bare hands and rips it off the bone. It's so FUCKING sexy how the blood just drips down the sides of his cheek as he tears the meat of the bone. He's aggressive with it. He's a fucking wolf and I'm loving every minute of watching him eat.

I'm clearly not the only one impressed. I notice it's Prince who leans over.

"Let me get that for you sir," he says.

He takes a handkerchief and dabs Walid's mouth for him as though Walid couldn't wipe his own mouth. I roll my eyes. Fuck this guy Prince was such a fucking ass kisser. It was beyond annoying.

Walid nods at Prince but doesn't thank him. He looks around the table again. He seems really bored. Half the boys aren't eating. The other half of the boys are eating very small portions in the most delicate way. I guess they don't want to see like slobs in front of the more dominant wolf. It was OK for an Alpha to be messy. It wasn't OK for a Beta to be messy. Walid seems a little bored by it honestly. He sighs as though annoyed. I have a feeling he usually isn't up this early by how disheveled his hair looks.

"I guess---I have to take one of you on an initial date...or whatever," Walid states.

He's saying it almost as though he really doesn't want to. I have the feeling that he is resisting this whole entire process. I don't really see Walid as someone who does something that he doesn't want to, but this process seems even over him.

I notice how everyone sort of hold their breath.

Walid continues, "I'm choosing Basil."

Karamo stares hard at me and whispers a short, "What the fuck..."

I think a lot of people are surprised that Walid isn't choosing Prince. I think Prince is surprised that Walid isn't choosing him for the first date. Prince's entire face just switches up. It's like someone just hit him in the face with a ton of bricks. I can't help but to feel a little happy at this moment. I'm glad he humbled himself.

Basil doesn't seem too excited about it. He is on the other side of the table. He just nods.

"Ok, sir," he says with the most monotone voice ever.

I would expect him to be a little excited but he seems nonchalant about it. A lot of these other boys look like they are beyond envious. One or two fake a smile. Some looked shocked as though expecting something else. Then there are the ones like Ian who immediately rearrange their targets. Ian has perfected the mean mug and he's using it really well right about now.

"Basil, some sort of horseback...event has been arranged," Walid explains, "Please meet me outside in about an hour. The rest of you are free to enjoy your meal and roam freely around Vanderbilt Castle."

Walid stands up. He has completely devoured his meat and throws the bone down on the plate with a loud thud. When he gets up I watch as they hustle to get his fur back on. I struggle to see if Walid looks at me but he doesn't. He doesn't even give me a second look. I hate the feeling of being completely ignored but then on the other side there were 20 goddam guys that were looking at him.

The day passes relatively quietly. I spend a lot of time with Dakota, Karamo and Karamo's Aunt Annie. Aunt Annie is a makeup artist clearly from Karamo's pack. She enjoys turning into a wolf quite commonly and just laying around at Karamo's feet all day. I think she feels more comfortable in wolf form than she does as a human. Karamo doesn't seem to mind it at all. He's all into the gossip.

"They've been away for a while," Karamo states.

"How do you know that Walid hasn't come back yet?" I ask him.

We are in a sunroom that overlooks a beautiful garden of flowers that manage to bloom even in the cold weather. Dakota has been standing at my side the entire time and Aunt Annie was in her wolf form, feeling the expensive Castle rugs underneath her fur. We were all pretty much calm except for Karamo. He was pacing around back and forth clearly feeling some type of way about Walid's date with Basil.

"When the Alpha is here they raise his banner," Karamo states, "It's not up."

I haven't even noticed any banner or anything. Karamo was taking this way too serious.

"I wouldn't be too worried," I state, "Neither Basil nor Walid seemed really excited about that date. They both seemed kind of reluctant about it."

"He's a threat," Dakota tells me.

"Basil?" I ask, "Why?"

"Walid can choose his Beta based on his heart or he can choose his Beta based on his head. Basil is wealthy. There are members of his wolf pack that are on the Forbes list. He can help build Walid's brand and influence. Basil's pack are the biggest rivals of Vanderbilt Pack. That's why everyone is shocked that Basil is even here. The Alaska pack is huge and dominant. If they merge that could be big for Walid."

Shit. I hadn't even thought about that. Karamo and I give each other hard looks. We're sitting here trying to impress Walid and he probably is going to settle for Basil anyway regardless of if Basil was even interested.

I shake my head. All this could be for nothing.

"Do you guys smell that?" I ask.

"It's probably me. I'm a little nervous. I get gas when I'm nervous," Karamo states, "This Basil thing is getting me spooked.

I stop him before I can hear too much more.

"No. Take a deep breath. Smell that burning scent..."


Dakota gets up at that moment. He looks out of the window through the woods. There is a fire in the distance. Something is happening out there. Something big and I'm scared.

All of a sudden an alarm breaks out in the castle. The alarm is loud as fuck. Something is definitely happening. That's when I smell something else. I smell the smell of humans. Why the fuck were humans in Vanderbilt? I thought this was wolf country.

"Change," Dakota tells me.

"What's wrong?" I ask.

Dakota has this stare on that I've never seen him have before. It's fear. The alarm is ringing all over the castle. People are turning into wolves all over the castle. I can hear howls. There is panic! There is fear. Something is happening.

I didn't know what.

"We're under attack," he says.

"By who?" I ask.

"Wolf hunters."

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