ONE

SCARLETT POV

We have not had any extreme trouble over the last few years since my mother and father repaired their relationship. Except for the slight increase of rogues crossing our borders, we all have been enjoying the peace. It's my eighteenth birthday tomorrow. I am so excited my wolf Ruth and my vampire Cara keep telling me that tomorrow we can and will confirm that Phoenix is indeed our mate. Cara has known Phoenix was our mate since we were around five that I remember. I shifted early at around two years old. All I remember from that age is them always arguing quietly in the back of my mind, but the one thing Ruth agreed with Cara on was being mates with Phoenix. But Ruth always said we wouldn't know for sure until we were seventeen or eighteen. It is also the blood moon tomorrow night. Mother and Auntie Josephine have been putting together the blood moon ball as everyone loved it. So when Father and uncle Noah suggested that maybe they could make it a joint tradition between the two kingdoms, they both loved the idea and started planning on and that is how it has been since.

Even though I have been spending most nights or days when I need sleep, I sleep in Phoenix’s room. What they don't know is that I have been sleeping next to Phoenix since I was ten, after sneaking in one night when I couldn't sleep due to a nightmare and found him sleeping restlessly as well. I would sneak in sleep next to him and then sneak back to my room before anyone was the wiser. I found we both slept better if we were together, but I also knew no one would understand and would think he would take advantage of how young I was. Other than just holding me and sleeping, Phoenix never laid an inappropriate hand on me. He was nothing but a gentleman. My parents want me to keep my stuff in my own room until after my wolf can tell me that the mate bond for her can be completed. So any homework or any work my parents give me to do with the kingdom I do at my desk, I was just doing a little bit of homework when Ruth and Cara both felt the pull of the blood moon again; it made me look up and out the window to see Phoenix sparring on the back garden lawn. I sit there and just watch him. He is a handsome male and I can't believe I will have the proof tomorrow that I am his.

“Scarlett?? Are you ready? We are leaving in five minutes!”

“Okay, Mother! Coming!” I get up from my desk and run down the stairs.

Mother, Josephine, Teresa, Charlotte, and I are joined by Theodore, Sebastian, Patrick, and Ethan. As I climbed into the car, I was a little disappointed that Phoenix wasn’t coming with us. We headed to the town and into the only good shop there. The males all stayed near the front of the store while we females roamed the aisles to find our dresses for the blood moon ball.

The others found their dresses really quickly, but I just couldn’t seem to find the right one; it was going to be mine and Nathaniel’s first official event standing beside mother and father but it is also my birthday, so I want it to be special. I walk the aisles and find myself at the back of the store. I find this beautiful blood red, strapless dress. It was knee length at the front with a half a meter train on the back. It also had our Royal family design of flowers and vines weaved through it. It was just perfect. Both Ruth and Cara loved it, too.

I tried it on but to the disappointment of everyone else, I wouldn’t come out of the change room and show them. I wanted it to be a surprise for all of them. We picked up some accessories; I found some nice red gloves and shoes. Cara was drawn to a flower and vine integrated hairpiece that had blood-red and yellow jewel stones set as the flowers.

We get everything bagged up, paid for, and then go for a walk around the town. We passed this really nice antique store. I duck into the store and have a look around. “Scarlett?

“Yes, Cara!”

“There is something here… We need to find it, it will be a perfect gift for Nathaniel!”

“Okay, can you give me a hint of what I am looking for?”

Sorry, but I will know when we get close to it.”

She is always so cryptic, my vampire, but I love her. I walk around the store and as we passed some old amulets, Cara made me stop. Scar! That one..”

“Which one? Is it this one?”

No, the blood-red one set in gold!”

“Wow! It's beautiful, but not girly either. You're right, it's perfect.”

I go to the counter and got the assistant to get it out for me; it had blood-red beads as the chain with small gold beads placed at equal distances along the chain. The amulet itself was an off-round shape with a bright blood-red stone in the center with lighter red stones surrounding it. I got the assistant to ring it up for me, we then made our way around the rest of the town. Along the way, I find a nice box to present it to him in. I hope he likes it “Don’t worry Scar, he will love it.”

“Thanks, Cara!”

Once everyone has finished with their shopping, we all climb back into the car and head for home. When we get there, I pick up all the stuff I bought and head to my room. I put everything away and then sit at my desk to fix up and wrap Nathaniel’s birthday gift. I had just finished when there was a soft knock on the door.

“Scarly? Are you busy?”

“Hey, Nat! No, just finished with your birthday gift!”

“Does that mean I can have it now? Little sis?”

“Little Sis??? I am not your little sis…. I am your twin so we are the same age...”

“Yeah, but I was born first, so that makes me older...” we both laugh. It has always been a standing joke between us since we were ten.

“No, I will give it to you tomorrow.”

“But sis….”

“NO! Bro Tomorrow!”

“Your no fun sis… Anyway, I know there is a possibility that you will find out tomorrow that Phoenix is your mate...”

“How do you know that? We don’t come of age until eighteen?”

“Come on, sis, we are twins… My wolf is maturing tomorrow too, we both will be able to find our mates as of then. I just want you to be careful. I know you are already connected to him, but there is still a chance that he isn’t your wolf’s mate...”

“But I can feel it.. both Cara and Ruth. It's him. I know it, besides I already love him myself...”

“Scarly!! How can you be so sure you love him? We are still young. The only way a werewolf knows is from their wolf, with the mate bond they carry and your wolf, even mine, is not old enough to do that yet...”

“So you think I’m immature too, that I don’t know what love is! That I don’t pay attention to how mother and father act when they are together, seeing their love out in the open…. What is it about me? Is it that I am a female? Or is it just that Phoenix is the second to father and should have better? Or that I am too young for him and he is too old for me? Is it that he is nearly three hundred years old and I am only just about to turn eighteen??…..” I take a breath and pick up his birthday gift. “Here, take this and get out of my room!”

I more or less throw the gift at him and turn away. I don’t want him to see me cry or how much that hurt coming from him, of all people.

“Come on. Sis!! I didn’t mean it like that...”

“Yes, you did, it's what everyone thinks… Now I said get out!!”

“Scarly, I really didn’t mean it like that…”

“You did…. NOW GET OUT!!!

I move over to my window and let the tears I was fighting finally fall down my cheeks. I sigh a little as I hear him leave my room. “Ruth, would you like to go for a run? I don’t want to be here at the moment and I can’t face Phoenix in this state. He will start to believe I am not mature enough for him either.”

“Scar! He would not, but yes, I would love to go for a run.”

I open my window, climb out and down the side of the castle. It is something that I have done for quite a few years, so I know what I am doing. I pull off my sundress in the bushes below my window and shift. Now Ruth is a beautiful white wolf, with black on her ears and paws and a stripe of red down her tail. That is a gift from mother and Lilith, her red wolf. I stretch and shake out our fur, then I allow Ruth to take over and run.

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