456 Watching The Strong Crumble
Upon hearing King Davin’s hesitation, Cole turned to the king and queen and narrowed his eyes at them.
They both wouldn’t meet his gaze. Something was amiss.
“We don’t keep secrets between the kingdoms,” the man said to his fellow monarchs.
“Hmm,” Martha searched her husband’s face. When King Davin nodded, the queen spoke up, “Then we have quite a number of secrets to tell you,” Queen Martha sighed.
When everyone had just tuned in to listen, the queen went silent.
“Everyone except for my beta alphas. We’d like the room,” Cole announced and they waited in silence as the betas and delta walked out of the Royal Suite.
“We’ll start with the girl. She’s a Seeker and she’s under our protection at the moment…”
The king and his beta alphas were the only ones allowed to know this much about Madeline. This seemed to include Kyle as well.
The more they spoke of how much trouble the girl was in, the more he felt like he shouldn’t have let her out of his sight.
His body and wolf reacted to the information of the attack on her home in a manner of ways he did not know possible. Every few minutes, the room had to go quiet when a low growl escaped him. He clenched his fists in an effort to control himself and his wolf.
However hard he tried to hide it, it proved impossible. So much so that he started hoping his face didn’t look too frustrated.
“And that’s when Lina found her in the woods. She passed out and they took her to Honour’s mother where she was treated. A series of coincidental events led that secret to being revealed to us and we ordered her to be kept in the palace just in case the rogues followed her.
Thankfully, that was not the case, or at least, that’s what we would like to believe. After the hunters’ flush-out plan failed to work, there is no telling what the rogues are up to,” the woman summarised, “So we keep her close.”
“Can’t anyone simply believe the rogues are completely gone now? There were a lot of them in the battle against the Lycaon empire. We could have wiped them all out,” Jason tried.
“No, they are still alive. They are simply smarter at hiding and keeping their presences hidden from the hunters,” Kyle intervened strongly.
Cole gave the beta alpha a glare that had him sitting back in his seat. “Forgive, Kyle. He’s a little more impulsive than normal.”
“It’s fine… His presence is actually refreshing. His power reminds me of Katie. It’s so similar,” Queen Martha chuckled, “I haven’t felt this close to her in a while. Just the fact that he’s breathing and not in pain is a constant reminder to me that she’s still alive and well.”
“Katie is fine and making a recovery. I can say that with complete certainty, your majesties,” Kyle replied before he could hold himself back.
“That’s good to hear… Now that we’ve got all that out of the way, we should get ready for…” the queen stopped talking, hearing a voice booming over the speakers that were raised far above the Great Arena.
“There is a bit of a sandstorm coming from the Sirius empire. After taking a look through a pair of powerful binoculars, we now know what is causing it.
We saw this dashing figure in the previous Royal games and came to call her names like Jeanie Sirius and the Blue. Lina Sirius is headed for the Great Arena as we speak… and I must say… she has definitely brought her A-game.”
The commentator caught the royals off-guard. The girls came bustling into the room at the sound of the announcer’s words. The queen beckoned for them to follow her to the exit.
Madeline rushed ahead of her friends making sure to avoid making eye contact with the beta alpha.
Kyle noticed how they kept a wall between him and her.
‘Did I do something?’ he asked himself but shook the shady thoughts off.
Something else was bothering him. A feeling deep inside him that something was wrong. It was strong enough to wipe his thoughts of Madeline from his mind but too weak to give him definitive information.
“Let’s hurry…” he suggested.
The royals rushed through the large establishment, making it to the elevator and down the Great Arena. Following the king, they made their way to a large tunnel that went through the Great Colosseum in the direction of the Sirius Empire. This tunnel was the one meant to allow the candidates for the Trials in when they arrived.
It was the final stretch they had to run to end the Trials.
And the Sirius family stood at the very end of it, staring into the heavy darkness of the tunnel in silence and anticipation.
“Do you think the commentator was exaggerating her speed?” Kyle asked Cole.
The alpha chuckled at the beta alpha’s nerves and only pointed beyond. Kyle followed his gesture and squinted his eyes in the distance. It took him longer than he would have liked, but eventually, he saw it… a dust cloud in the distance far beyond the tunnel.
At first glance, buildings from the town and the road was all one could see with the enhanced sight of a werewolf but after paying close attention to detail beyond these. Instead of finding the clear blue of the sky, there was a thick brown of dust covering the view of the sky in the distance.
What the beta alpha saw had his eyes opening wide in shock. There was a wolf in front of the dust cloud and it was closing in on them with alarming speed.
The smile on King Davin’s face quickly vanished, “Something is wrong.”
They took a closer look at the girl, straining to figure out how the king had come to this decision.
It was hard to discern anything at this distance, but in the next few seconds, they didn’t have to squint as the slender white wolf covered the distance with astonishing haste and skidded to a stop right in front of them.
The wolf was panting heavily and it quickly lowered itself to the ground.
It was only then that Honour began to think through what was happening. Lina was much faster than Drake which meant she didn’t have to use this much speed to try and beat him.
She could have seen him close to finishing and chosen to run this fast but that wouldn’t make sense since the goddess hadn’t detected the presence of the prince yet. Something else had Lina rushing at such a pace. ‘Where were Crysta and Wyatt?’
Seated atop the white wolf’s back was a green-eyed girl holding onto a man. Except for the girl’s messy hair, she was fine.
However, the man looked to be in much worse shape than the girl. The man was groaning in pain and had turned as pale as a ghost.
Lina’s voice boomed over the mind link, connecting to both the wolves of the Lycaon pack and the Sirius pack at the same time…
It was a call for help.
“He needs to see a doctor now,” the girl rushed her words, “He’s wounded badly.”
Honour was by Crysta’s side first, helping her get the man off Lina’s back.
Her instincts immediately traced his symptoms to his abdomen. The girl lifted his shirt without warning… The queen was about to ask what she was doing when they noticed a bandage beneath the man’s shirt that was stained with a black oozing liquid.
The smell that came from it was akin to that of wolfsbane but with a twist that didn’t make the werewolves cringe, “What happened to him?” Honour asked Crysta but the delta didn’t look capable of replying.
They had been moving too fast that the sudden stop was enough to completely overwhelm her senses. Honour was able to get Crysta off the white wolf’s back.
The voices of the Queens Martha and Margaret boomed over the mind link, summoning the health workers to attend to the man.
The medics were at the entrance in no time and carrying Wyatt away on a stretcher.
Lina shifted into her human form. The three bags she’d tied together dropped to the ground relieving her of their crushing weight. The princess groaned and stood up, trying to get rid of the aches that riddled her body.
In the end, she was only able to induce a wave of exhaustion that had been waiting for her… restrained only by pure adrenaline. When her legs were about to give out, Cole caught the princess and slung on arm over his shoulder.
“Will he be alright?” Lina asked the paramedics, but all they could reply was the routine.
‘It’s too early to confirm at the moment but we promise that we’ll do everything in our power to get him back in shape.’
The only new thing the woman talking to her was, “Was he the one you intended to take part in the games with?”
The girl was silent for a moment before answering calmly, “No… no, he wasn’t. But he helped me through the Trials. I want him to get better.”
With that said, the woman rushed off to help her colleagues. Normally, there would be people to receive them when they had just finished the Trials. People took them to their lodgings where they could recuperate and get better in time for the games.
However, with the kings and queens there at the moment, these people chose against interfering.
“Lina, what happened out there?” King Davin was the first to speak up, approaching his daughter.
The woman wrapped her arms around her daughter and tried to calm her. While Lina didn’t look to be in any danger, her mind was moving at a million miles per second.
So much so that Crysta seemed to be in better shape than her.
Lina’s composure seemed to crumble in her mother’s arms. Who knew how much she’d held inside during the Trials? Who knew how much energy she’d used to bring her companions to the Great Arena?
Whatever it was, Lina didn’t have the energy to block it any longer and her friends felt it through the mind link. The clattering of thoughts, the collapse of her entire being as she descended into a frightened unstable state.
Crysta then took the time to notice this. ‘Was she blocking me from her mind?’ the delta thought to herself. She’d suspected it when the girl had stopped saying much back in the mountains, but… she hadn’t thought…
Lina’s calm exterior was slowly shattering. She embraced her mother but no words came out. In exchange for the tears that streamed down her face, the girl went mute… and no one asked her any further questions.
Crysta stayed behind with Honour, Madeline and Bree as the queen took the princess away, accompanied by the other royals, “I guess family is another kind of bond, isn’t it?” Madeline mentioned.
“Well, for some people, I guess,” Crysta spat.
“What’s that supposed to mean?” Madeline’s question sounded genuine… and that’s what made answering it even harder.
“We don’t all get parents that dot on us every step of the way is all I was trying to say. Sometimes, you just luck out, you know. Not everyone is going to be as sweet and flawless as your mother,” Crysta tried.
Madeline looked up in thought, trying to understand what the girl had just said, “I think you’re wrong…”
That was the last straw, “WHAT!!!”
However, before anything could happen, there was another sound over the speakers… The commentator sounded alarmed, “Medics, now… Prince Drake is in dire need of medical attention…”
The rest of the man’s words were drowned out by the chaos that took over the Great Arena.
Honour turned to the tunnel that led out the Great Arena, the colour draining from her face, ‘Drake!’
It was one problem after the other…