Chapter 8

The trees are tightly knit, and I weave through them while reaching out and feeling the coarse bark underneath my palms. The moss is soft and damp yet leaves my hands dry when I pull them away and rub my fingers together. Rays of light cascade down through the trees creating intricate designs on the forest floor, and when I step onto the patterns, the light shines on my feet. During it all, the dense scent of rainfall tickles my nose.

Two guards follow behind me, and I continuously glance behind to check if they are still there. The two wait obediently outside while I climb the steps and knock on my grandmother's door. She answers in a matter of seconds, and I hurry inside. "You're okay, has anything happened? Have you seen anyone in the forest or—"

"Evangeline, what are you talking about," she quiets me down. "Why are you asking me if something has happened?"

"Sebastian, his brother was attacked the last time I was here. People asked him about me—strangers," I explain. "I was worried that they hurt you too, but Sebastian said he sent guards out to check on you after they found Henry. The guards said you were alright."

"Yes, they knocked on the door, dear, said it was only a check-up."

I grab her hand and squeeze it as if I need to make sure she is completely focused on me. "Grandma, you have to tell me. These strangers that were looking for me—what if they are connected to why I'm out here in the first place. I need to know the truth, all of it."

"Alright, alright. Sit down. It is a long story," she says and takes a breath before beginning. "When I was a young girl, a bit older than you are now, darling, I was infatuated with the Alpha of the old pack. He had lost his mate—he is the father of the current one, I think—anyways, I did not care that we were not mates, I thought I truly loved him, so I decided that I would tell him the truth about myself. Once I told him about the moon goddess he believed me, but his perception changed. He thought I was a witch or evil and whatnot, and he was convinced that I would take his pack away from him. So, as paranoid as he was, he came after me one night, committed to killing me."

"That's terrible," I mumble.

"Yes, it was. He had a silver knife, and he barged into my house. Oh, I was so frightened, dear, I ran for my life and into the woods. The Alpha chased me until he caught up and pushed me against a tree. He held the knife to my neck, calling me demon, but I managed to slip out and shove him to the ground. The knife, it had fallen, so I grabbed it and held it to him. Oh, he came at me, tackling me to the ground and when we landed the knife pierced his chest. I screamed and panicked. I heard people coming so I ran back home. It was the most scared I had ever been, dear."

"Did they find out that you were there?" I ask, on the edge of my seat, realizing how vivid and dramatic her story is.

"It is more complicated than that, I'm afraid. After the Alpha had died, and the news spread around the pack, I found my mate. He was moonstruck over me, so I told him what I had done, what had happened, and he didn't leave. Somehow the Alpha's son, who had to take over, was convinced that I had done it. By then I had your mother, and she was about your age. I thought all that happened was behind me, but his son came out of nowhere with the accusations. The son knew what I was, and he followed in his father's footsteps. Your mother was old enough to take care of herself, and she was upset by my gift, never believing that I was telling the truth—"

"So my mother didn't believe you while the Alpha did, and thought you were evil, like his father?"

"Yes," she confirms. "So, when I told your mother that I had to leave she thought it was for the best."

"So you left the pack because of that, not only because you're independent. Why don't you want to come back with me and join Sebastian's pack then?"

"I know your Grandfather and I initially left because of the Alpha, but I had grown used to life like this, darling."

I lean back in my seat. "Alright. What happened after you left?"

"The Alpha kept a close eye on your mother, knowing she was my daughter. After a while, it died down, and your mother found her mate, had you, her life was normal. Well, when you told her that you see the moon goddess she came and visited me. She told me about it and began to worry that it was real all along. Awhile after her visit, she began to notice the Alpha retaking interest in her, and right when it started, she decided to hide you so he wouldn't know you exist. Well, after the attack on the pack, the Alpha was convinced that it was your mother's fault."

I interrupt, "how could it I have been her fault?"

"The Alpha believed that your mother lead the other pack there. He thought that she did it because taking over the pack would be easier if the pack was in ruins. Oh, he was convinced it was her fault, so your mother panicked and took you here."

"She went back?"

My grandmother shakes her head, no.

"Your mother and father ran, dear."

"What—why didn't they take me with them?"

"Your mother was paranoid, always convinced that the Alpha was following her, watching her. She didn't want you to get hurt. I know you're going to ask why she does not come and see you, so I'll just go ahead and tell you that she does not want to lead him to you."

"Wow," I murmur.

"I know, dear. It is a lot to take in."

"If the people who attack Henry—if they're linked to this... I have to tell Sebastian."

My grandmother reminds me, "you'll have to tell him about the moon goddess then, Evangeline. Perhaps you should think before—"

"I wish I could, grandma, but this is not just about me. It affects Sebastian, his family, his pack, I mean, his own brother was attacked because of those people out there. I'll just have to tell him and hope for the best."

The air is cooler outside than it was before. The two guards look up as I come through the door and close it behind me. Something catches my eye down beside my foot, and I see a small spider dashing across the porch. Without thinking I bring my foot down on it before carrying on my way back to the pack. The two guards follow behind me again as I rush through the trees. They do not question my quick pace.

Once we make it to the border, I turn and face them. "Where is the Alpha?"

"By now he may be getting back from the search," one of the men informs me.

"Take me to him."

We switch positions.

Are you sure that you are ready to do this? My wolf questions my abrupt decision making.

I have to tell him now. More people could get hurt.

Yes, but—

There are no buts. This is greater than us.

If someone else is hurt by these people, it will be my fault. The only reason Henry was attacked was that of me, and now that I may have a reason for all of this, I can stop whoever they are. If this is linked to the past, to the Alpha, then he must have found out where I am, that I exist. I have not seen my mother for years so how could she have led him to me? There are so many unanswered questions that I know Grandmother cannot answer for me.

A nervous, uneasy feeling begins in the pit of my stomach, and it seems to intensify the closer that we get to Sebastian. Grandmother told me that he could either accept this part of me or acknowledge it and move on. Or he could react the way that Alpha did years ago and call me a demon, but I hope that option is unlikely. It should not be hard for him to accept it, right? The Mate bond will keep us close. The Mate bond will filter out the questionable as it does for me. Maybe he will react like Henry did, find it intriguing, interesting. Right when I told Henry he asked me questions of fascination, nothing showing that he may be put off.

"The Alpha is right over there, Luna," the guard says to me, and I look up from my feet.

Sebastian is indeed over there, and I watch him as he talks to Andrew and another Guard. My conscience is telling me to go, but my feet will not seem to leave their spot.

"Is everything alright?" The other guard asks me, and I nod.

"Thank you for taking me to him."

Slowly but surely, I make my way over towards Sebastian while convincing myself that this is the right thing to do. Andrew glances over at me, causing Sebastian to do the same. Andrew then says one more thing before walking away and joining a group of men, while Sebastian meets me halfway.

"Did you go to your grandmothers?"

"Um, yes. Actually, she told me something important, and I think it might help with—with this issue," I fight myself to speak the words.

"Alright," he says. "What is it?"

"Well, it's kind of a long story. I think someone is out to get me."

Sebastian's face hardens. "Let's go back to the house, and you can explain there."

After running back to Andrew and telling him where he will be, Sebastian and I walk back to the house. The walk is more timely than I hoped, he leads me inside, and we sit in the living room. My knee bobs up and down at a rapid pace as Sebastian sits down beside me. "You have to keep an open mind," I blurt out.


"Well, my grandmother and I, we aren't like others," I start, not having the courage to look him in the eyes. "We have this ability, or gift—she calls it a gift. Well, the moon goddess—we see her."

"You see the moon goddess?" He repeats me.

"See and talk to her, actually. She comes to me." Sebastian runs his hand down his jaw, and I take the opportunity to reach out to him. My hand connects with his arm, and he looks to me. "I know it sounds insane and unbelievable, and I don't know how to make it sound reasonable. All I'm asking is that you acknowledge it so I can explain why people might be looking for me."

"Okay," he agrees. "Go on."

"When my grandmother was younger she loved the Alpha of her pack, the pack I belonged to when I was a child. She told him about her gift, and he believed her, but he reacted negatively. The Alpha wanted to kill her because he thought she was a witch, or demon, or something, and that she was going to take the pack away from him." Sebastian's gaze is aimed directly into my eyes, making me squirm a bit. "Well one night he tried to kill her, and she ended up accidentally stabbing him in the chest. The Alphas son, who took over, was furious, and he somehow found out that my grandmother killed his father and he knew about the moon goddess and everything. Well, a while later after my grandmother found her mate and had a child, the son came after her. So that's why she moved out into the middle of the forest with my grandfather."

"And your mother stayed at the pack?" Sebastian asks.

"Yes. She didn't believe that my grandmother could communicate with the moon goddess. My grandmother tried to explain it and make her understand, but she was set in her ways. When my grandmother left, she was old enough to care for herself," I explain. "The son then turned to my mother and accused her of having the same abilities."

"Does your mother share it?"

I shake my head. "I'm sure that it jumps around, but women on my mothers side of the family tend to get it. When my mother found out that I was seeing and talking to her, she hid me."

Sebastian's brows furrow. "What do you mean, she hid you?"

"It was like I didn't exist. She would, um, hide me in the house so the Alpha didn't know she had a child. She feared that the Alpha would come after me, assuming I have the ability—"

"Which you do."


Sebastian leans back on the couch. "Did you go outside?"

"No. I spent most of the time... upstairs."

A worried look comes to his eyes. "Evangeline, that's—"

"I know, it sounds bad, but she was just trying to keep me from him. After an attack on the pack, he blamed it on my mother, saying she lead the other over. He thought that she did it because it would be easier for her to take over the pack if it was in ruins. That's why she sent me to my grandmothers because he was coming at her more than ever. My mother knew that I would be safest away from it all, and she would be too."

"Where are your parents?"

I swallow. "She was so paranoid that the Alpha was watching her, following her, so she thought staying away from me would keep the Alpha from finding out I exist. I don't know where she is now, just that she's probably far away from me, with my father."

Sebastian takes a breath. I wait patiently for him to say something, and he does. "So you think the men who asked Henry about you—you think they are linked to this Alpha. You think he discovered that you exist and that you have this ability."

"Yes. I think he's after me. I think he wants to get rid of me."

The idea of a man so dedicated to ending this genetic lifeline scares me greatly. Though I have never met the man, something inside is telling me that he will kill me. Sebastian's face is flooded with worry. How upsetting it must be to find your mate and discover that there is a target on her back.

"The pack," he ponders lightly.


"The pack that attacked yours. How many years ago did it happen?"

"Ten," I tell him while trying to figure out what is going through his mind.

Suddenly he gets up and walks directly to his office while I trail behind him. I stay silent as his fingers trace down a book from one of the shelves. He slips it out and flips through pages. From what I can see, the pages look to be handwritten. "What was your old pack's name?"

"Uh, Kenn Pack I think." Sebastian exhales and drops the book to his desk. "Is something wrong?"

"My father attacked your pack," he says unexpectedly. "I had thoughts. . ."

I fall back into one of the two seats. "Oh."

"He was a reckless Alpha who only cared about taking down others. He had a constant hunger for power, for control, and it caught up to him eventually. I'm sorry, I shouldn't have—"

"No, it's alright. It's just a little, surprising. Your father— Why did he attack? Is there any way you can find out? Was there any specific reason?"

"He may have done it for the land, or maybe just to show dominance. As I said, he was very reckless with his leadership."

My eyes tumble down into my lap. "That attack is the reason why I was sent to live with my grandmother; it's why I can't see my parents."

"I'm sorry, Evangeline."

"It's not your fault. It's just a little strange how everything is connected somehow."

The night comes quickly as I spend the rest of the day thinking over everything I have learned. My family has been living in shadows because of a man with an obsession. The lengths he is willing to go to chills me to my core, making me second guess all the times I thought animals were watching me in the forest. What if it was him, what if his eyes were the ones stalking and watching every one of my movements. The idea creeps me out. Part of me has a deep hatred for him, a loathing so intense that my mind cannot wrap around it. Half of me wants to watch the stranger burn.

My fingers unknowingly wrap strands of my hair around themselves as my mind continues to stray. Laying across Sebastian's bed, I stare up at the ceiling, and I am not sure how much time has gone by. For some reason, time feels as if it has stopped, as if everything has been put on hold. It is a selfish idea to think in such ways, but with all these thoughts and theories whirling around in my head, I do not care. Maybe accepting my selfishness, for now, will not do me any harm, but I cannot get addicted to it.

My attention shifts to the doors as one opens from the corner of my eye. Sebastian comes through, causing me to sit up swiftly.

"This is where you've been," he says and comes over to me.

"Sorry, Henry has people over, and I was just looking for some quiet," I say.

Sebastian sits down on the edge of the bed. "His company left two hours ago, Evangeline. How long have you been laying here?"

"Maybe four hours then. It sure didn't feel like it." Not at all. If Sebastian did not tell me, I would have guessed that I have been up here for only twenty minutes. There is just truly too much to think about. Maybe some sleep will do me good. I cannot bother myself with the Alpha if I am asleep. "Do you mind if I sleep here again?"

"I'd prefer if you did."

A small smile curves from my lips. "You know, I've realized something today. That I don't want to be hidden anymore. I don't feel hidden here."

Sebastian's hypnotic, green eyes study my face. "I wouldn't want you to," he pauses, "you know, I've realized something too."

"What's that?"

"That I may just do anything to see you happy, to see that genuine smile on your face."

My lips slightly part from his bewitching comment. I feel the color pour into my cheeks, yet I do not feel the need to hide it from him. "Really?"

"You are the most intriguing creature I have ever met."

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