You know those stories about unwanted rejects, whose loved ones either died or all abandoned them to drift aimlessly through the world? A worthless no one, almost invisible to other people. Nothing spectacular about them, no grand rise from nothing to something as they dawn into adulthood.
Yeah well, that's kind of my story.
My name is Alora Dennison and l am literally hours away from my Awakening Ceremony at the ripe old age of 18 years old, with absolutely no one who gives a crap about me to be there, no support, no family, and definitely no friends. I'm a late bloomer, l guess. Not that it's unusual in my bloodline, as almost every female in my family didn come out until they hit their late teens from what l can remember. Much like the others in the orphanage, stuck here with me. Another reason we are snubbed and left to our own devices in this hell hole they call a home.
My ceremony has me all churned up inside and restlessly pacing the room I share with Vanka. She's like me, although in all the years we ve bunked together l cant say we have ever become friends of any kind. She makes it clear she doesn't like me and much like everyone around me, they all keep their distance. We tolerate one another, but none of us have ever bonded.
lm an orphaned no-one whose parents died in the war of ten years ago against the vampires. So is she, but it didn't Warm her to me in any way. Ì guess because she's from a leg of the Santo pack and they have hated the Whyte pack since long before the war. We were feuding before the vampires united every one of us and old scars and grudges are not something that wolves let go easily.
We were just two small girls left with no immediate blood link guardians, put in this place for unwanted cubs, to live out our days in unexceptional ways. it would have been kinder to end our misery back then, than leave us to live as outcasts among our own people, our own kind. Shunned because we are the shameful proof that their own packs failed them. I don't think they knew what else to do with us. So many young with no one left to care for them and raise them in Our Ways and seen as cursed. They were ashamed of the failings of our families and we are the ones to carry that burden like an eternal black mark painted on our faces.
l mm amazed that kids like us even get to go through with the ceremony, l mean it's kind of a big deal and we are kind of not. We are a bit like the lost boys in Neverland, except.... none of us want to stay here and growing up is the only way out.
Your Awakening is a bit like graduation in a sense. A passing from child to adult and normally where you would find your place, your rank, in the pack, and get a mate. | have no delusions that it means anything of the sort for any of us turning tonight. Of which there are four from the home of unwanteds, and I hear maybe three from the packs around. .Just a handful of kids trying to break free, find their path, and all in the great presence of the entire 'Packdom.
The Packdom being the dozen or so wolf tribes from the state. They all have to convene on the shadow rock to watch you transform fully for the first time, under the first full moon of your birth month. It's not hard to figure out when you're ready. The weeks running up to your birthday, you start to change in small ways and, god damn, it hurts. Like having your insides snapped and stretched in fits of severe twisting pain and zero control over it happening.
The signs are pretty evident to all. Kind of like puberty for werewolves, Ì guess. Maturing, physical improvements and a massive rise in appetite and aggression. Little moments where you start to transform painfully and then it dissipates just as quickly so you never really reach a first transition, but it's reported, and no one can hide it. That pain, that you know Will come with the first time, is saved for the full moon after your birthday.
being eighteen, puts me way down on the pecking order and just confirms my bloodline were not that of warriors or strong enough to be anything of importance. Vanka is sixteen and she too is
state and everyone in their bloodline turned before the age of ten. Colton, the next heir
to take over from his father as Alpha one day and the way things are heading, he won't just be Alpha of the Santo pack, but all of us. Something that has never happened in
his sub pack, looks down at the likes of us and never makes eye contact or responds to anyone below his station. That's how it works here, dominance and strength is everything to wolves. He has his father's arrogance and he knows every female hitting puberty is craving to become his mate. He hasn officially paired or marked yet and
radiates aggression without trying and is a rare black furred wolf on turning, one of the largest among us. Í think the one time he actually acknowledged my existence was the day he pushed me out of his way in passing. l tripped in front of him in the corridor to the great hall, and he didn't bat an eye or miss a
school nearby that was built purely for our kind, away from “normal' people. He was ahead of me by one year, so we didn't really cross paths in all that time, and since he lives with his pack on the south side of the mountain, only coming to the shadowy north when required, I never see him or any
Dominant Alpha and likes to check in with all on the mountain when he sees fit. Since Colton graduated school, we only see him when by his father's side for official visits.
we wanted. Many survived and fled and have been out there for almost ten years, recovering from it and licking their wounds. It's been quiet for so long, eerily so, but there is so much unease and unrest in the air that the packs called together a meeting a month back to decide the fate of our
did, were forever changed. Those like me who lost everyone; my parents, grandparents, uncles, and my brother... We are shunned by people who like to pretend it never happened. My family were lost, none of them came back and therefore in the eyes of the pack hierarchy ... my bloodline is weak. They don't
were never ready for
experience the thrill of a hunt or the warm
home to us. Until one lone night, the people who cared for me in their absence, the last of the Whytes who were too vulnerable to follow them, were slaughtered by invading vampires in our own homes on the far edge of the farm lands, and I was a lone survivor who was then shunted to the orphanage. The events of that night are so foggy and hazy, I don't really remember it at all, or why l was even spared.
a single person from my bloodline came home. An entire pack, of more than forty people I called my own, they were all gone, everything l knew.... Every single last one of them.
eight-year-old child learning everyone she ever loved and was protected by, Were never coming home for her. My security was shattered and my future dead and all I have known since was the isolation and solitude
no one in the packs will bond to us for fear of producing weaker offspring. It's all about dominance in our world and power, standing, and ability. DNA ¡s everything. They call us the Reject Pack which sums up exactly why
after all. We are not though, they see us as cursed children and deny our mere existence, throwing us
and abandoning the
want us if that is even possible. Solves their problem and shirks