I finish pantry duty, making sure everything is set in the guest rooms. I had Sam order bouquets for each of the suites as an extra touch. In the guest Alpha's suite, I also add a bottle of champagne. If this is the last thing I ever get to do, I want it to be something that makes someone else happy.

It is almost one-thirty in the morning before I plop into bed, exhausted. It has been a shit day. If Luna Caroline has anything to do with it, it will probably be my last. Lex is exhausted too. She stops sulking long enough to tell me she needs me to shift, but I can't. I have no time or energy. I keep promising her I will, but I feel like I've broken that promise. I float off to sleep to the sounds of her whimpering in my head while I cry into the pillow.

To my surprise, my alarm wakes me in the morning. Lex makes me promise to hang on for one more day. We go through the motions of the life I hate. While I'm getting ready, I look in the mirror to find my hair is completely silvery white now. I tuck it into a bun to try to avoid people noticing it.

The delegation from Blood River arrives in the early afternoon. They are all tall and intimidating with tattoos and big muscles. Some of them have visible scars on their arms and faces. They're wearing matching black and white business clothes or all-black security uniforms. Luna Caroline directs them to the sitting room while I quietly bring in pitchers of water and ice tea for them to drink. I do my best to try not to be noticed when one of the women calls me out.

"You there, omega," She says abruptly, staring with green eyes and black hair pulled into a tight ponytail.

I look around and realize she is speaking to me.

"Wine. Wine for everyone."

"Beta Lenora, of course, right away," Luna Caroline says quickly, then nods her head to me.

I rush to the wine cellar and pull out two cases of wine, napkins, and glasses, prepping the drink service cart and head back to the sitting room. I open three bottles each of red and white, leaving the rest for them to do as they wish and I back out of the room so I can start on preparing dinner.

The rest of the day goes without a hitch. The guests seem pleased with dinner. In the evening, I go to each guest suite to make sure everyone is happy with their accommodations. A couple of people ask for more bags of chips or soda but on the whole, everyone seems satisfied.

The last door is the Beta's room. Beta Lenora opens the door wearing a blue t-shirt and jeans, looking much more relaxed than earlier. She has a large tattoo of a rose and a dagger on her forearm. Her dark hair is still pulled back but she isn't wearing makeup. I can see now, she looks only a few years older than me. I can hear her mate inside talking on the phone.

"Thanks for checking on us. Everything is wonderful. The flowers are a beautiful touch. You have good taste," she smiles at me. I bow to her slightly, then turn to leave.

"Wait, what's under your hat?" The Beta asks suspiciously. I stop in my tracks and turn around.

"I'm sorry ma'am?" I ask. I feel the blood drain from my face and a knot forms in my belly.

"Your hat. Why is it so low? What are you trying to hide?" she asks, "Come closer."

I come closer and slowly take off my hat. Keeping my eyes to the ground. My silver hair cascades down my back. It is embarrassingly greasy and visibly dirty. I feel myself blush.

"Oh, I see," she says with surprise in her voice, "Now. Don't be disrespectful. Always look me in the eye when I speak to you."

Oh crap. I look up at her. The light from her room shines right into my eyes. She looks at me blankly for a moment trying to process what she is seeing.

"What are you? A hybrid?"

"No, ma'am. The pack doctor did tests but doesn't know why it happened. He thinks it must be a transformation related to my wolf getting ready to wake up," I mean, it's not a's just not the whole truth, right? How am I supposed to tell a complete stranger that my wolf says I am the Moon Goddess's actual daughter and that is why I have silver hair and violet eyes?

She grabs my chin and pulls my face closer to hers, inspecting closely, "And does the pack doctor know someone has broken your nose recently? You still have bruises."

"He's treated my injuries in the past," I'm not trying to elaborate or implicate anyone to this woman I don’t know.

"Who's at the door, Lenora?" the Beta inside calls to her.

"Just the omega assigned to us, Milo. What's your name, again?"

"It's Iokaste, ma'am but please call me Kas. I'm not an omega, though. I'm just a servant."

"Her name is Kas. She picked out my beautiful flowers," she's still talking to her mate but she hasn't taken her eyes off me as if she is trying to size me up for some reason. Her brow furrows slightly as she stares. She's making me really self-conscious.

"That's nice. Ask her if I can get bubbly water in the refrigerator."

"No problem, ma'am," She and I share a smile at 'bubbly water', "I will bring it shortly and leave it at the door.”

"Thank you. Oh and Kas, if those bruises aren't healed tomorrow morning, find some powder. Alpha Bronx Mason does not tolerate seeing injuries like that."

"Ye-yes, ma'am."

I run to the stockroom, get four bottles of San Pellegrino and put them in front of the door, then run away as fast as I can. One million questions run through my head. Will their Alpha kill me for being weaker than other wolves, even if I'm not part of his pack? Is she going to tell Alpha Graham about my unusual features? Will she call him out for letting someone break my nose? I mean, lady, if you think that is bad, I got some news you're not gonna like and then I'm dead meat by your Alpha for sure.

Alpha Graham comes down later and whips me for not having all the items our guests wanted. By morning, Lex has still not been able to fully heal me. So I put on a loose black t-shirt and shorts with a stretched-out waistband. I’m in so much pain, everything is a struggle. Cooking, carrying breakfast trays, leaning over to clean tables. Every move causes scabs to open and bleed, making the back of my shirt damp with blood.

Beta Lenora makes eye contact with me a couple of times. She can tell something is wrong but doesn't say anything.

For some reason she can't explain, Lex is bouncing around in my head all morning.

“The Beta is so nice! I can't wait to meet the Alpha and Luna!”

“Lex, come on. We're not going to get to meet the Alpha and Luna. We're going to melt into the wallpaper and pretend we don't exist.”

“Pshh. I want to meet them.”

“Okay, well I hate to disappoint you, but you're gonna be disappointed.”

Lori comes in while I'm prepping lunch to let me know the Alpha has arrived and I need to make lunch for him as well. There is no Luna. He doesn't have a mate? And according to Lori...he's really handsome. Not that it matters to me, because I'm going to be wallpaper. I don't want him to notice me at all.

I take the trays to the conference room. Alpha Bronx Mason is not there but there is a spot at the table where he is supposed to sit. I leave his meal at the empty seat. Everyone from the Blood River pack politely thanks me as I lay plates in front of them. Their manners betray their intimidating features. No one from the Silver Moon pack says a word to me as I serve them. I collect the trays and walk out quietly. Lori lets me know she will clean the plates so I can focus on dinner and food for the party.

I go to the kitchen but need a minute to collect myself before I get started on dinner. I go out the back door and stand on the stoop. In the distance I see a man smoking. I don't recognize him, it must be the Alpha from Blood River. He is too far away for me to see his actual features though. All I can see is a tall figure with dark hair and a black suit. The wind wafts his cigarette smoke toward me. It smells like cigarettes but I swear it smells like coffee too...or dark chocolate. This guy was a mocha drinker? I laugh to myself at the thought of the big bad Alpha of Blood River sipping on a mochaccino.

Comments (36)
goodnovel comment avatar
Interesting… yup
goodnovel comment avatar
Abugu Tim
very intriguing
goodnovel comment avatar
Anita Pigman
love the story..

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