Read Witches & Werewolves: A Sacred Oath Online

Authors: Bella Raven

Tags: #mystery, #young adult, #magic, #shapeshifter, #paranormal, #romance, #suspense, #witch, #Thriller

Witches & Werewolves: A Sacred Oath (10 page)

MUZZLE FLASH. SPARKS. Smoke. The gunshot thunders, cracking like a lightning bolt. An environmentally friendly copper round launches from the barrel. It drills its way through the thick night air, straight toward me. The bullet has no consciousness, no soul, just one primary objective—devour flesh. And it’s very, very hungry.

I watch the events unfold like a frame by frame replay. There is nothing I can do. I am just along for the ride as the bullet races toward my head. It stays true to its mission—disrupt the standard operation of my brain. End my life.

But then, something unexpected happens. Lucas leaps toward the path of the bullet. At first, I am horrified. The thought that he would sacrifice himself for me fills me with guilt and dread. My stomach turns and I scream in terror.

My heart is pounding and my skin tingles with adrenaline. I watch in slow motion as Lucas grabs the bullet, deflecting it. The slug rips through the edge of his palm, splattering blood across my face. I hear the bullet rush past my ear, ripping the air, only millimeters away. With his other hand he grabs the barrel of the gun. With the speed and precision of a martial artist, Lucas disarms the hulk, stripping the weapon from his hand.

Lucas slams his elbow into the the guy’s face, and I can hear his cheekbones crack. This towering, massive, hulk of a man drops to the ground like a slab of meat, smacking the concrete with a thud.

The loudmouth passenger, who once cheered him on, sprints away through the parked cars. He disappears into the foggy night.

Lucas drops the magazine from the .45 and ejects the round from the chamber, rendering the gun nothing more than a chunk of machined metal. “Is everyone ok?” he asks.

My ability to speak has vanished for the moment, and I can only manage a nod. I glance around and see Noah, and he gives me a thumbs up. Jen looks petrified and pale as a ghost, but she’s ok. Then my eyes find Jake, cowering behind a minivan. I shake my head.

My gaze snaps back to Lucas. “Your hand. What about your hand?” I ask.

“I’m fine, don’t worry about it,” he says.

“You’re not fine,” I say, wiping the blood spatter from my face. But when I look at my palms there is nothing there. Not a trace of blood. I brush my face again, thinking maybe I just missed the spot—but still nothing. It’s like all of his blood has evaporated.

“Let me see your hand,” I demand.

“I’m fine, really. I think someone should call the police,” Lucas says.

“I’m on it,” Jen says.

I step closer to Lucas, taking his hand, which appears soft, smooth, and unharmed. My eyes widen and my jaw drops at the sight. I’m utterly confounded. “But I saw you get hit!” I say.

“Everything happened really fast,” Lucas says.

“Your blood was on my face!”

Lucas giggles. “Well, it’s not there now.”

“Jen, you saw this, right?”

Jen raises a finger, shushing me. “Hi, I’d like to report an attempted homicide,” she says, into her cell phone. Jen walks away to continue the conversation. She rattles off the details of the incident to the officer as I keep trying to pry an explanation out of Lucas for what I saw transpire. But he’s not forthcoming with any account of the events that will satisfy me.

Jake was hiding behind the minivan. Noah had covered his eyes. And Lucas maintains that the
trauma of the event
may be causing me to


My memory is perfectly fine, thank you. I can see this is going to go no where, so I just drop it. For now.

Lucas must have clocked that guy good because he doesn’t regain consciousness until after the cops arrive. It takes the better part of an hour to make our statements recounting the events to the officers. We are all ready to get home and put this behind us.

Growing bored with the tedious aftermath, my eyes wander through the parking lot. At the edge of the pavement, I see a lone, gray wolf amidst the thick pines that border the area. The wolf stares at me a moment, then raises his head, panning across the lot, surveying the situation. The wolf’s eyebrows crinkle upward, looking almost concerned. I glance around to see if anyone else notices. Someone does. Lucas has his eyes locked on the wolf. The wolf sees him too, narrowing his eyes in return, which begin to burn red. The wolf slowly reveals his white, razor sharp fangs and lets out a low growl. My eyes flit back and forth between the two, each of them tensing, posturing, taking an aggressive stance.

“Are you going to wrestle with a wolf now?” I ask.

Lucas breaks from his staring contest and looks straight at me, and gravely says. “Wolves are dangerous. They’re not house pets. You should stay away from them.”

I peek back to the edge of the lot and the wolf is gone. Lucas seems to relax again after this, and the officer asks him a few more followup questions.

The ambulance carts the hulk off, strapped down and secured in a neck brace. I overhear one of the EMTs mention they suspect a few broken vertebrae in the neck as well as a shattered orbital bone. They all seem to be a little shocked that this amount of trauma could result from a single blow. Especially to someone of this size by someone as small as Lucas.

Officer Jackson tells us that the hulk has a warrant for his arrest for the murder of Marc Lewis. He says the hulk's wrap sheet is as long as the Great Wall of China. Jackson thanks us for helping apprehend him.

By the time we get back to uncle Jake’s it’s well past Lucas’s curfew. But somehow, I don’t think that’s going to be much of a problem, all things considered. We all pile out of his car, loading in the groceries. With five of us, it makes short work of putting away all of the food.

“Well, I guess I should really be getting home now,” Lucas says.

I walk him to his car, and Jen gives me a sly wink on my way out the door. I roll my eyes at her. I can tell that she’s going to be peering through the blinds, watching me say goodbye to Lucas, hoping for something juicy to happen.

“I guess I should say thank you for saving my life,” I say.

“All in a days work,” Lucas says.

“How did you do that?”

“I’ve been taking karate lessons since I was six.”

“That’s not what I’m talking about.”

Lucas shrugs.

“I know you know what I’m getting at,” I say.

“It’s getting late, and I really need to get home. I’ll see you at school tomorrow,” he says.

Lucas hops into his car and drives away into the night. I watch his car disappear down the drive, then I turn back toward the house. I hear the blinds rattle as Jen moves away from them. Before I get to the door, I hear a rustling sound in the woods. I look to the trees and see a pair of red, glowing eyes staring at me from the shadows. I’ve had enough of this nonsense. I want answers, and I want them now. I’m tired of everyone dodging my questions about the strange things that seem to be perfectly normal in Haven Hill.

I take a deep breath and turn to the woods. My heart flutters a bit as I march toward the forest. I try my best to look intimidating and determined, despite hobbling on crutches.

I march straight toward the glaring red eyes.


UPON ENTERING THE old-growth forest, I am enveloped in darkness. My spine tingles with fear as I creep deeper into the trees—searching, scanning for those red eyes. With each step, leaves and twigs crinkle underfoot. The metal crutches creek, telegraphing my position to anything out there in the darkness. Yet, I see nothing—no movement, no shadow, no red eyes. Deeper and deeper I go, unrelenting in my quest to confront this beast.

A single beam of moonlight penetrates the canopy of the trees, splashing the leaves below. I pause for a moment, basking in its glow, looking up to the now almost full moon. Perhaps another day or so until it peaks. When I hear a slow, rolling growl behind me, I realize this may not be the best time of the month to be stalking a wolf in the forest. I slowly spin around to see those blood red eyes and sparkling white fangs. We stare at each other for a long moment. Then, with slow cautious steps, the grey beast moves toward me.

My heart races with each step, and this may be the stupidest thing I’ve ever done in my life, but I kneel down and let him approach me. He moves so close I can feel his breath on my neck as he sniffs. I stay perfectly still as he circles me. Around and around, until we find ourselves nose to nose again. His eyes staring into mine. His fangs glistening in the shaft of moonlight. My stomach fluttering. The hairs on the back of my neck standing tall.

He is regal, with pure white pelage, peppered grey on top. A bold, muscular frame and thick, furry mane proclaim his majesty. His white face, cheeks, and muzzle are accented with a grey brow, forehead and ears. He is the most beautiful animal I have ever seen.

Then he lunges for me, licking my face. I giggle because it tickles. And he won’t stop. I scratch his chin and pet his forehead. I run my fingers through his soft fur like he was a domesticated animal—not like the cold, ruthless killer that he is.

The wolf licks my face again, only stopping when he hears the distant howl of another wolf. His head whips to the direction of the sound. Another howl joins the first, and the eerie, discordant tones echo through the trees.

The wolf snaps back to me and huffs. My brow furrows with confusion. What is he trying to tell me? Another huff. Then a low, short bark—a warning! But it’s too late—another wolf has appeared through the trees.

My wolf faces the intruder, standing tall, tail raised, displaying his alpha dominance. Then a second intruder emerges. Then a third, followed by a fourth. The fur of their muzzles and cheeks are stained with the blood of a recent kill, and they still appear ravenous.

The air fills with a volley of deep, ferocious growls as the intruding pack faces off against my wolf. He is the only thing between me and their sharp, bloody fangs.

I want to run, but I am paralyzed with fear. Even if I could move, the best I could manage would be a quick hobble. Old ladies on scooters move faster than I do, at the moment.

The intruding pack tests the the perimeter. They advance and retreat toward my wolf in random succession. He keeps each one at bay, snapping and growling, standing his ground. But he’s outnumbered, and it’s only a matter of time before the array of wolves blitzes in to rip us both to shreds.

Drooling, growling, snapping, the pack narrows the gap, finally dashing in for the kill. One or two would be a fair fight, but four is too much. Two of the wolves dive for the legs, aiming to plunge their sharp canines into the muscles and tendons. The other two leap into the air, attacking from above.

I watch in horror, as the growling and snapping grows deafening. My beautiful, majestic wolf is doomed. And I am next. If I’m going to escape, now is my only chance. But I can’t do it. I can’t leave this noble animal to die, torn to pieces by these ruthless demons.

My eyes scan the ground for anything I can use as a weapon. Then, I realize I’m holding two weapons already—my crutches. I vault towards the huddled vortex of mayhem, preparing to bat away the vicious horde. It’s probably one of the worst ideas I’ve ever had, but I do it instinctually.

The wolves brawl, blurring like a tornado. A swirling mass of fur, blood, and fangs. It transforms before my eyes. The growls turn into whimpering yelps as each attacker is cast off. The majestic wolf has metamorphosed into a towering beast, standing upright like a man—but not human. Massive, rippling arms grab the now feeble wolves. He hurls them through the air, slamming them into tree trunks and spiking them to the ground. Brushed away like fleas, the attackers submit. They lower their bodies to the ground, subjugating themselves with whimpers and cries. The pack sulks backwards. The once emboldened aggressors now cautiously retreat.

My wolf, the regal creature, inhales—expanding his chest and broad shoulders. Then he flexes like a body builder, roaring into the night proclaiming his victory. His carved, striated muscles bulge in the gleaming moonlight with the definition of a race horse. His smooth, white and grey pelage stretched tight against his musculature. My eyes survey the creature’s mammoth body, his back still toward me. His long arms ending in powerful hands, with long fingers and black, razor sharp claws. His legs, thick and mighty. His breath, heavy and booming as he continues to stand facing away from me, staring into the night.

I have to wipe my eyes. I can’t believe what I’m seeing. This beast must be at least seven feet tall. This is no harry, grotesque monstrosity. Rather, a stunning creation—sheer perfection in form. Like a statuesque greek god, carved in stone.

I want to see his face. I have to see his face.

Other books

Betrayed by Jordan Silver
Burning Attraction by Beale, Ashley
Poe by Peter Ackroyd
Mr. Write (Sweetwater) by O'Neill, Lisa Clark
Alex by Pierre Lemaitre
Poisons Unknown by Frank Kane