Rosalie Murdoch stared at the sacred circle. The circle was a patch of land on a hill that was surrounded by a ring of stones. It was the sacred ground of the pack. This is where Christopher Reynolds would mate with 19-year-old Grace Anderson. Under the blessing of the moon goddess, the Council, and the pack's watchful eyes. Grace was another insufferable bitch! Rosalie had met her on a few occasions. She was a typical Alpha princess, with her head stuck in the clouds.
"Rosalie, there you are. I looked for you all over." a curious voice startled her from behind. Melissa approached her carrying a bunch of white and red flowers.
A few girls of the pack, including Rosalie, were assigned by the beta Roger, the second in command, to put fresh beautiful flowers on the stone pillars surrounding the circle. Grace Anderson, the bride to be, had requested to have a "flowery" union. Ugh. Everyone was busy preparing for the ceremony and decorating different areas of the pack. Several distinguished guests from other packs were also arriving for the ceremony. So, everyone was busy doing something.
"You've been crying again!" Melissa declared. It was not a question, it was a statement.
"I am not crying. I didn't sleep well last night," Rosalie snapped.
" You are not an exceptionally good liar, Rosalie. Did Chris say something?" Melissa asked, she was the only one who knew about Chris being her mate. She was the only one who Rosalie trusted with the secret. The romance between the Alpha and a lower rank wolf was frowned upon by the Council. They didn't believe in 'tainting the bloodline. It was not forbidden but it was best to avoid such circumstances. Rosalie's father was the second-in-command and was proud of it. Although Rosalie was a Beta by rank. She was still not good enough to be a Luna.
"I haven't seen him in days," she lied and continued to grab and tie the flowers on the blocks on stones. It looked like a flowery Christmas decoration.
"I said you cannot lie to me," Melissa rolled her eyes. "Chris has been in a bad mood all day, he thrashed his office earlier, Roger had to send some boys to control him. They are cleaning up right now."
Rosalie sighed. She knew that there was no way to deny the truth.
"He said he loved me," she whispered, "I love him, Melissa," she whispered again, pain erupted in her heart, "you can't imagine how much it hurts, doing all of this, decorating for his mating with that bitch!" She said, throwing the flowers back into the cardboard box.
Melissa hugged her sympathetically. "The council sucks." she whispered into her ear, feeling her pain.
"Why didn't Chris oppose? If he is your mate, he should show some spine and tell the council that you will become his Luna. The ceremony is tomorrow for crying aloud! Is he a stupid chicken or a wolf?" she said and paced around in anger. Rosalie knew she felt bad for her.
"He can't," Rosalie whispered back. She tried to control her voice so that the others would not hear the pain and hatred in it.
"Anderson Pack would have waged a war with us for disgracing their Princess and breaking the oath. You don't want another pack war, do you?"
"This is why I don't like arranged mating, it's too complicated and too old-fashioned."
"I'll be fine Melissa, it's not like we are mated or anything. Our bond will break once Chris is mated to Grace. It won't be so bad afterwards," she tried to pacify herself in a cheery voice, but her wolf was sad. The mate bond could be broken if the mate mated with someone else, but it hurts until that happens.
"I will be OK. I should have known though, our relationship wouldn't have made it anyway. I think it’s for the best that it ended early."
Melissa hugged Rosalie again. "You are very strong, Rosalie."
"Rosalie," Martin's voice called suddenly. Martin was Rosalie's adopted brother. His parents had died in the pack war. They were good friends with Murdoch. So, he was adopted by them. Rosalie and Martin grew up together as siblings. He was 2 years older than Rosalie.
"Rosalie, your mother is looking for you," Martin said. Martin was tall, with a good physique, he was a beta in training. He was strong for his age, as strong as an Alpha. Melissa broke off the hug.
"Go on," she said, as she took the box of flowers from Rosalie. "I'll finish up decorating for you."
"Thank you, Melissa," Rosalie murmured to her as she looked at Martin, then followed him.
She went into the manor. A long corridor stretched ahead of them. The walls were filled with an array of priceless paintings collected over the years. The mahogany floor was covered with a luxurious red carpet. As they walked together back to their home quarter in the vast silver Moon Manor, the lower ranks of the pack bowed their heads to them in respect as they carried boxes filled with things needed for the sacred ceremony tomorrow. The air was filled with excitement and euphoria. The Alpha's mating was one of the most momentous events for any pack. The second most important event was the birth of an heir. Rosalie bumped into her father as she was entering her home.
"Hey Rosalie, good that you are here. I am going to attend a pack meeting. And look over the arrangements for tomorrow's function," her father said.
"Go to your mother, and stay out of trouble, all right?" He added.
She smiled at him. He was worried that she would do something mischievous. She could not blame him for being worried about her. Rosalie loved to have fun and run around the forest and the manor in either human or wolf form. And yes, sometimes she did get into trouble, more frequently than others. But she was not a child anymore. Rosalie was eighteen now. She chuckled as she remembered her past mischiefs. A year ago, Rosalie, Martin and Melissa were part of their first pack run. Despite the warnings to stay in the designated area. She had ended up in a wolf trap, which was fixed by some human hunter. She had howled for help and Chris had gone crazy looking for her. He came to her rescue and hugged her tight. That was also when she had her first kiss. She bit her lip at that memory and shook her head to dispel it. As if wanting to erase that memory away.
"Rosalie?" Her father asked again, snapping her attention back to him.
She nodded, not trusting her voice. "I won't get into any trouble, I promise."
"Good girl," her dad patted her cheek and left for the meeting. Nobody in the pack knew her inner turmoil. Except for Melissa, not even her parents knew that their daughter was the Alpha's mate, but he had abandoned her.
Rosalie walked into her living room. The manor was divided into several sections. Each suite was like a flat. Based on their ranking, each wolf family got their living quarters. Like the second-ranking Betas, Rosalie's father had a luxuriously furnished suite. Though it was not as opulent as the Alpha's quarter, it was still better than most others. Amelia Murdoch, smiled at her daughter, as Rosalie squirmed in her figure-hugging red bodycon dress. It was sleeveless with a deep V at the back. "You look beautiful," Amelia whispered, with misty eyes. Rosalie rolled her eyes, "are you done now? Is this why you were looking for me? Just to try this stupid dress?" "Rosie, it's a very expensive limited-edition dress, thankfully I managed to find it online." She beamed. "Dad needs to put a stop to your online shopping!" Rosalie grumbled. "One day you will thank me, young lady," Amelia said sternly, wagging her finger. She took out another shimmering blue gown and waved it in front of Ro
"Now why is a girl as lovely as you are crying?" a deep male voice said. Rosalie hiccupped in surprise and quickly wiped her face, trying to locate the speaker. He was standing in the doorway in a white tee and jeans. A black leather jacket adorned his broad frame. He was tall and incredibly masculine, well-built, and powerful looking. He had thick black hair. Dark, expressive eyebrows sat atop deep-set, steel-grey eyes. His jaw and chin were broad and hard. To Rosalie, he looked dangerously handsome and familiar. Chris was handsome like a pretty boy, but this man was all hard muscles and he oozed power. "I'm so sorry sir, I was just...preparing the rooms for the guests. I did not know you would be here so early," she stammered. He slowly stepped closer to her, and Rosalie began feeling incredibly tiny in comparison to him. "It's no problem, Rosalie," he said. His steely eyes seemed to see right through her, and she looked at him in surprise. "How....how do you know my name?" she
Rosalie rushed out of the Alpha's suite with a hammering heart. She looked down at her feet, tears were starting to pool in her eyes. She shook her head to dispel the treacherous tears and hurried towards the circle. The crowd and the excitement would make her feel better. It was midnight, and the ceremony was about to start. Rosalie ran towards the circle to claim her position. The mating ceremony was usually not conducted for lower-rank wolves. It was done only for Alphas and a few other high-ranking wolves. When we say mating, it means mating. The couple would mate and bite each other in the presence of witnesses, the pack, the elders, and the Holy Moon. Nudity or public sex was not a problem for them. They were part animals. However, they did not go around prancing naked all the time. It is just that wolves had a higher tolerance for these things compared to humans. By midnight, the atmosphere grew more intense and heated. Rosalie reached the group of unmated betas and found Meliss
Rosalie watched as the last of the wolves left for the run. She was left alone along with several unmated wolves and those who had duties to perform. She saw Alex approaching them and her eyes widened in surprise. "Hello there, I see you didn't join the run," he said in his deep baritone. "You didn't join them either," Rosalie retorted. He smirked," I was planning to, but something else caught my attention." His eyes rolled over her, taking in her figure-hugging dress, the deep V in her back and her narrow waist. He would have loved to chase and conquer her. His wolf nodded its approval. Melissa looked at both, then said. "I think my mom called me," she smirked. "I should be going," she started to walk, "See you later." "Melissa!" Rosalie snapped at her. What was she doing? Why was she leaving her alone with him? To her annoyance, Melissa continued to walk, pretending not to hear Rosalie's mental messages. Rosalie scratched her head, feeling a mixture of annoyance and awkwardnes
She began by introducing herself by saying, "My name is Grace." It was nothing out of the ordinary for the Lunas to become acquainted with the progeny of those in power. She gave a light and airy laugh while twirling her long hair. "Although I am now the Luna. I would ask that we avoid getting too formal. I am like a sister to every one of you. I want all of us to become good friends!" Her voice was as sweet as candy, and she chirped like 10 years old. Rosalie wanted to roll her eyes at Grace. Was she being genuine, or was this only a ruse for her to exert her authority over them? She hid her face from view for a little while. As Luna Grace could see into people's minds if she wasn't careful, so Rosalie was carefully guarding her thoughts. "Hey, what say we get some fresh air and then meet up with the rest of the folks in the Common Room?" Grace said. When they entered the communal room, they gathered in a circle. While the other two betas watched, Melissa lazily stretched out on t
"I've got a suggestion!" Melissa remarked, with a twinkle in her brown eyes. She chortled and said, "Why don't you hook up with Alex? In case you haven't noticed, he does have a body worth dying for," she said. "Now, I have not yet had the opportunity to view him in his natural state, but I am confident that he will be......big." She gave a wink. "Shh!" Rosalie put her palm over Melissa's mouth to prevent her from speaking. "Everyone will be able to hear you!" She became red in the face for no apparent cause at all. "Admit it! You like him, I noticed the way you were looking at each other." Melissa teased. "Melissa, it has nothing to do with it at all. We're just friends!" Rosalie said, irritated. Melissa's chuckling made her sigh. "Friends? Uh? When did you become friends with Alpha Alex?" Melissa teased her. "It's a long story, let us say that we do hook up, and I can muster up even the smallest amount of feelings for him. It would be pointless because there is no way that it
Amelia replied to Rosalie as she dusted off imaginary lint from her shoulder, "There's no need to thank me, I want the best for my daughter." She gave a sly smile, "But if you could bring a man back..., that would be great. I do not doubt that certain wolves will be drawn to you the moment they lay eyes on you." Rosalie shook her head in disbelief. Her mother had resumed her role as the matchmaker for her. She cocked an eyebrow and gently brushed a strand of Rosalie's hair as she asked, "Wasn't it Alpha Alex who was being pretty friendly with you during the mating ceremony? Honey, he's got a lot going for him: he's young, powerful, and tremendously wealthy all at the same time." "Oh, no, Mom!" Rosalie rolled her eyes. "He is not interested in me, we are just friends, and I can't even claim that we are close friends because we have only met like...3 times in my entire life!" She let out a groan. Her mum looked crestfallen. She bit her lower lip and asked, "Is that so? Perhaps I wa
Rosalie joined her family to offer their congratulations to the newlyweds. Rosalie bowed her head to her Alphas but refused to look at Chris, even though she was certain that he was ogling her. The realisation that he could only see her and not touch her brought her a sense of satisfaction. That must be annoying. She let out a chuckle. A congratulatory toast was offered to the newly mated pair. Everyone got to their feet, bent their heads to them, and then took a drink from their champagne glasses before standing back up. There was a short speech that included the typical things that individuals say at their wedding reception. Chris finished his thank-you speech by saying, "Thank you all for coming, the blessings you have given to me and my dear mate, Grace, as my last words to such a beautiful event, I invite you all to feast and dance all night long." Once the speech was done, Rosalie focused on the food. Because she had skipped lunch earlier in the day, she was extremely hungry.