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  • Shadowgod - Almost Home
  • Shadowgod - Almost Home
  • Shadowgod - Almost Home
    astone2292
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Love in the Shadows - 22. Chapter 22: Virulent Voices

Vincent laid back and watched his big wolf howl. He did it...he claimed me! But...I...I'm getting sleepy. No...no! Need to stay awake. The mage's eyelids began getting heavy and started to close. The door to the bedroom swung open as Mason turned his head.

Lei barged in, ready to grab Mason's attention. "Mace! Son! We're just here to help Vincent. Just come with me-"

"He is my mate!" Mason shouted at the top of his lungs and swung his body off the bed to face the intruder as the wolf's mind took over. My mate! Must protect my mate!

Caleb came in and saw Mason in his hybrid form for the first time. Oh! Fuck! That's a big wolf! His eyes darted to see Vincent naked on the bed, bleeding from the wound on the neck. Damn, that looks bad! Mace must have bit him pretty hard-

The lion felt every hair on his body stand as he noticed Mason was looking at him with every ounce of rage. Lei quickly glanced at what Caleb was looking at and muttered. "Caleb. Keep your eyes on Mason. Do not look at the bed. We have to get Mace calmed down, and looking at Vincent will be issued as a challenge. A challenge that would cost you your life!" Caleb nodded at his mistake and prepared to take his Alpha on.

The hybrid flared his irises at the two shifters before him and prepared to do anything to protect his newly turned mate. Tension filled the air as the three waited to see who would move first. Lei and Caleb knew they had to move fast, but they needed to get Mason away from the body to prevent further harm.

"M...Mace…" The large wolf darted his eyes to his bloody mate. Sounds weak. Needs me! "The...they're here...to help me. S-stand down...big guy. Shift...shift back. Need them to...help me get better." Mason's large and furry frame trembled as every muscle struggled to make a decision.

Needs me! Need to protect!

No, my wolf...let me take over. You might harm the ones we love the most.

But, the mate! I need the mate!

And you will have him. We have him now. But the doctor needs to come in and get our mate nursed back to health. Vinnie can't shift yet to heal the wound, so he needs to let it heal naturally.

...Okay. The large wolf hybrid dropped to his knees and started his change back to his human form. Lei stayed on alert as he watched his son's fur recede back into the skin. Seeing Mason back in his human form, he signaled Ben to move in. The doctor scurried in and leapt onto the bedside.

"Just relax, Vincent. I'll get the blood stopped." Reaching into his bag, he pulled out plenty of sterile pads, gauze, and bandaging tape. Gods, he lost a lot of blood! He should be fine for now, but until the lycanthropy sets in over the next twenty-four hours, he will need some serious medical attention. "Lei, I need to get him to the clinic! He's lost too much blood. I have it slowed, but he's about to lose consciousness."

Mason knelt on the floor with ragged breathing as he recuperated from his shifted activities. "He...is my mate...okay?"

Caleb grabbed the blue bathrobe and draped it over his Alpha's shoulders. "Yes, Alpha. We need to get him to Doc's clinic, though."

"Yes. Do what...needs to be done." Mason let his words fall from his mouth between shaky breaths. He had never felt so weak and disoriented.

Doc wrapped gauze around the large bandages on Vincent's shoulder and taped it off. "I brought my van. It has a gurney in the back. Enforcer Gage, could you help me grab it?"

Nodding, Caleb got up. "Sure. And it's Caleb."

"Gotcha. I take it no one is accustomed to their proper titles?"

"Depends on the situation, Doc." Caleb grinned and escorted the doctor outside. Lei took Caleb's spot at Mason's side and placed a hand on his son's shoulder.

"Come on, son. You should be next to your mate. He needs your presence. It will help him."

Mason gazed up to his Dad and nodded. He rose to his feet, but felt off balance. My shift took more out of me than usual. I guess letting my wolf run the show takes more energy. Sitting on the edge of the bed, he grabbed Vincent's hand, causing the mage to flutter his eyes open. "Hey, pup. We did it. You're starting the turning process."

Vincent nodded and lifted his hand up Mason's arm. As he felt Mason, he saw how pale his skin was. Jeez! I probably look worse than death. He opened his mouth to speak, but only whispered garble came out.

"Vinnie. Don't speak. Save your energy." Doc and Caleb came back with a stretcher board and laid the straps out to the sides. Lei got to Vincent's feet, prepared to lift his son-in-bond. Mason looked to his mate as Caleb placed his hands under the shoulders. "Ready, Lei?" Lei nodded. "One...two...three!" The Alpha and lion lifted the dead weight off of the bed and gently laid him on the stretcher. Ben took the belts and fastened them across Vincent's chest and legs.

The Alpha wolf felt beyond helpless as he watched the three carry his mate out of the bedroom. His body felt fatigued, almost to the point of complete exhaustion. I knew this would be the outcome, but my Gods...my mate is being taken out of our home on a stretcher! And I’m practically broken. It takes me every ounce of energy I have just to walk. Pushing himself up, Mason baby-stepped his way into the hallway, holding himself up with the wall. As Vincent was slid into the medical van, Ben latched the stretcher in place on the floor so the body wouldn’t go flying during the ride. “Just sit tight, Vincent. We’ll be at the clinic shortly.” The doctor watched as the small man slowly nodded as his eyes were barely open. The virus is taking hold. He will probably slip into a day-long coma like most turned humans. Natural born lycans get years to acclimate to the virus, but humans get so much less time.

And Vincent will have even less time! There’s a full moon the first week of September...and that’s next week! The two should have put some more thought into the timing. But this human...well...shifter, is gifted and strong. If he can pull off that magnificent dance he did last week, he can handle this. Ben hopped out of the van and scooted to the side as Caleb took the initiative to ride with Vincent in the back.

Mason stumbled to the porch, hugging the door frame. “I can go...let me get in the back.” All heads turned to the Alpha and were concerned for his health.

Lei walked toward his son and crawled under the younger shifter’s arm to assist. “Son, you are in no condition to do much of anything. I’m taking you to the clinic, Caleb will assist Doc, and your mother will bring you plenty of food. You used too much energy, and the sooner you accept that, the faster we can get your mate the help he needs.” The mustached Alpha turned to Doc and signaled him to go ahead. Departing with his neck bared to the side, Doc got to the driver’s seat and pulled out of the driveway.

Assisting his son, Lei practically carried his son over to the rusty blue truck. He opened the door and Mason insisted that he could get in the vehicle without ‘needing his hand held.’ Lei let out a chuckle and pulled out his phone to call his mate.

“Hey, honey. The bonding went well, but we are on the way to the clinic.”

He heard his mate gasp. “Dear Gods! Is Vincent okay?”

“He is in the back of Doc’s van. I’m sure he will be alright, but Ellie, I need you to bring Mason food to the clinic. Our son can barely stand.”

“Of course! I’ll pick up several pizzas from town real fast and I’ll be at the clinic in no time! I love you, dear.”

“And I love you, my mate. Safe travels.” He hung up and set the phone in the usual spot under his crotch. “Mason. Your mate is going to be fine. I know that the wolf has yet to develop, but I can tell Vincent’s will be strong. But Doc and Caleb will focus on your mate. We need to be concerned with getting your energy back. Your mom is bringing pizzas. You’ll need at least two of them.”

Hell, give me four! I’m starving and I feel like I need to eat a whole pizzeria! But Dad’s right. I’m no good like this. I need food and a nap. But my wolf won’t let me sleep until I know Vincent is back in my arms. “Alright. I just feel so useless right now.”

While he was driving, Lei placed his right hand on his son’s shoulder. “Son, give yourself a sitrep. You just performed your second hybrid shift for the day and completed your bond. The fact you were still standing shows how much willpower you possess. I mean, Hell! When I completed my bond with your Mom, I passed out. They had to carry her and myself out.”

Mason hadn’t heard anything of his parent’s bonding. Damn...Dad passed out? “I find that hard to believe.”

“Well, you better. I know you’ve had a hard time accepting this fact, but you are stronger than me, son. You may be a little too instinctual in your decisions and push off important tasks, but you have a stronger connection to your wolf than I do with mine. The pack has flourished since you took over. I never thought of truly opening up our pack to all of these different shifters. I took in a few when it was deemed necessary, but with you shutting down the older traditions...you’ve made us stronger, son. Pride should be running through your veins.”

It does. Gods, it’s been a while since I conferred with Dad on how the pack dynamics have been working since I took the role of Alpha. I’ll pencil that in after we make sure Vinnie is okay. Looking through the windshield, Mason saw they were about to arrive at the clinic. He saw the van parked in the unlit parking lot with the doors wide open. They took Vinnie inside. Hopefully it isn’t bad. As soon as Lei parked the truck, Mason opened the door and began getting his balance under control. “Son! Wait for me!” Yeah...I’m not ashamed to say I need help right now. I can barely walk on my own.

Lei hurried over and assisted Mason to the door to the clinic. Upon entering, the sterile aroma of the medical office hit the shifters’ sensitive noses. Mason sneered at the stench as he tried to block it out of his mind. Balls! I freakin’ hate hospitals!

“Doc? You here?” Lei called out as he carried Mason into the dark and lonely lobby.

“Yes, Alpha! In room four! Caleb, hold the IV up like this.” Mason’s eyes widened hearing a familiar medical term. “Lei, is Mason with you?”

“I’m here, Doc. Is Vincent okay?” Being carried into the main hallway with patient rooms, the fatigued Alpha smelt his mate. He...he’s starting to smell different. The lilies now have a slight pine aroma. Interesting. Smells like mine! A thin smile came to the wolf’s face as he relished in one of the few positive things that came from the evening.

Echoing from a few doors down, Doc lowered his voice knowing the shifters were close. “He’s doing fine. Vincent has lost consciousness but he is stable. We have his medical file from when he joined the pack. Did you know he was type O negative?”

“No, I didn’t. Something special about that?” Mason and Lei were about to reach room four when Doc came out and met the two Alphas.

“Why yes! It’s the blood type that carries the lowest risk of reactions for blood transfusions for different blood types. Far from me to ask, but when he makes a complete recovery, I’d like to request for him to donate. Hospitals and clinics, like mine, are always demanding for donors.”

“That will be up to Vinnie, but I’m sure he wouldn’t mind. You say he will make a complete recovery?” The words lit up Mason’s face. He will live! Thank the Gods! I can’t thank you enough!

“Yes, but he will be out of it for a day or so. I’d like to keep him here as long as possible, at least until his body accepts the virus and begins healing at a shifter’s pace.”

Mason nodded. “May...May I see him?”

“Yes, of course, Alpha. He is sleeping, so do try to be quiet. Caleb is watching over him, but this isn’t a proper hospital so there can be numerous guests.” The wolves smiled and Lei continued to carry his son to the room. “Oh, Alpha Mason. I can get you some crutches or a wheelchair if you’d prefer to be more mobile.”

“Crutches would be fine. Thank you, doctor.” As Doc went to the storage room, Lei and Mason hobbled into Vincent’s room. As they opened the door, Caleb stood from his chair to bare his neck to the wolves.

“Mason...Gods...pardon me saying so, but you look like shit. Your mate is strong. He just needs to rest. Having you by his side will help the healing process.”

“Yes.” The young Alpha took the nearby chair and pushed it with his foot to scoot it closer to the occupied hospital bed. Sitting down, his body wanted him to relax but he leaned forward and grasped the nearly lifeless hand. I feel his heartbeat through my fingers. Looking over his mate, Mason’s wolf wanted to carry him away to safety. No, my wolf. He is in the safest place possible at the moment. Vincent’s skin was still sickly pale and his long hair was parted in many different directions. Leaning up from his chair, Mason combed his mate’s hair out of the sleeping man’s face. There...now he looks a little better. He’d be up in arms if his hair was kept that way.

His ears twitched as he heard the front door opening once more. Smelling the air, he recognized his mom’s scent...and food! Oh, Dinbe! Give me that delicious food! Lei left the room and returned momentarily with his mate. “Oh...Gods, Vincent. Is he going to be alright?”

Mason nodded at Elaine. “Yes, Mom. He will be alright. Just gonna be here for a day or two until my bite takes full effect.”

Holding her chest, the lady sighed a deep breath of relief. “That’s so good to hear. Son, there’s several pizzas just outside the door. Let me bring one to you.”

“Thank you, Mom. I’d get it myself, but I think I’d have to crawl to get it.”

The statement earned a hard and cold stare from Elaine. “Do we need to admit you as well?”

Doc, with great timing, arrived with two silver crutches with darker gray padding. “Lady Elaine. A pleasure to see you. Your son will be fine. I need to do an evaluation, but I believe he is just fatigued and hungry.” Elaine nodded and went to retrieve her son a box. Handing it to him, she noticed his ravenous stare at the pizza.

“Eat, Mace. But keep it slow. I think Doc would be upset if he had to deal with someone who ate too quickly.” Popping open the box, Mason swiftly took a hot slice and took a wide bite. Oh, sweet mother of the Gods! May my hunger never cease! This pizza tastes divine! Caleb and Doc shared a pie, and another was split between Lei and Elaine. Munching on his second slice, Mason gazed upon his sleeping mate. Just wish you were awake, Vinnie. I’m already missing your sweet voice.

Lei took a moment after eating a slice to shoot Dave a text. Feel kinda bad he missed out on his Alpha's bonding, but he should be here for this. ‘Dave. If you’re free, head to Docs clinic. M & V completed bond and Vin is laid up. Mason is recovering as well.’ Shortly after, he got a reply from his former Beta. ‘OMW! Wish I would have been told! I’ll bring the booze!’ Hell yeah! Pizza AND liquor? And my sons completed their bond! This has truly been a fine day! Grabbing another piece of pizza, he decided to wander around the clinic in true dad-like curiosity.

After twenty minutes, Mason devoured his first whole pizza, rarely straying his eyes away from his mate. I’m still hungry, but my energy is coming back quick. Think I’ll let my food digest a bit and go from there. He set the empty box down and brought his hand back to Vincent’s. “Don’t know if you can hear me, baby. But I just want you to know I’m here. And I’m not going anywhere until you wake up. I can almost hear you starting an argument over me staying, but I won’t budge with this. You’re my fully bonded mate, and I couldn’t love you more than I do right now.” Mason closed his eyes and focused on pushing as much love into his bond as possible.

He felt a small twinge of Vincent’s pinky in his hand, and Mason nearly jumped out of his seat. “Doc! I felt him move!” Rising from his chair, Doc came over to check Vincent’s vitals.

“I don’t know what you felt, Alpha, but he’s still pretty comatose.”

“I pushed love into our bond and I felt a finger move.”

Doc moved his hand to his chin in wonder. “I suppose that sending a mass amount of positive emotion would cause a natural stir of body movement. Mason, do it again, if you could.” Abiding by the doctor’s wishes, Mason sent another wave of love to his mate. Watching his patient’s digits, Doc noticed it as well. His fingers moved! Just barely, but they moved! Their bond must be strong if the Alpha’s emotions can cause a forced movement like that. “Very interesting. I’ve never seen such a response to emotions being transferred between mates. I wouldn’t recommend doing big bursts of emotions, as that could cause a flux in heart rate. Maybe try a steady trickle. That will help with the healing process.”

Mason turned back to his mate with the new knowledge and started to send a slow pulse of love. He didn’t notice any movement, but the wolf knew it would help Vincent. Taking a deep breath, he took a break and got up to grab another pizza. He took a few steps and found himself in much better health. I can move without worrying about falling now. Good. Walking out of the room, he smelt something burning, but it was familiar. The wolf ventured to the front door and stepped outside to see his Beta.

Dave leaned against the building smoking a cigarette and laid eyes on his Alpha. Slight concern washed over his face. “Mace...you look...great?”

Laughing at his friend’s sarcasm brought a lost joy to Mason’s heart. “Good to see you, too. Sorry I haven’t had the chance to text you.”

“Nah, I get it. Lots going on and there hasn’t been much time. I take it everyone else is here?”

“Yeah, there’s a little bit of pizza left if you’re hungry. I was about to grab another box before I smelt your terrible habit.”

Inhaling more smoke from the tobacco, Dave blew away from his friend. “I’ll probably grab a slice. Just finished a fine dinner date with a new girl.”

“Another one? What happened to...Kelly? Was that her name?”

“Oh, Gods! I got out of that trainwreck! She was crazy, bud! I’m thankful that she ended up ghosting me. Nah, went out tonight to JD’s with a sexy short thing named Stacy.”

Stacy...Stacy...why does that name sound familiar? “Where does Stacy work? Her name sounds familiar.”

“She’s a barista at Beansies.”

A light rumble of chuckles permeated throughout the wolf’s chest, and slowly built up to a roar of laughter. Dave looked at his friend with a raised eyebrow. Uh-oh...do I have another crazy girl on my hands? “Dave...that’s rich! She’s one of Vincent’s friends! How did you meet her?”

Pocketing his free hand, Dave couldn’t help but appreciate the coincidence. “I just went for coffee this morning and she caught my eye. Then I get my cup with the word ‘hunk’ written on it and a wink as she handed it to me.”

That...is way too funny! Mason braced himself against the building and let out the hardest patch of cackles. “Bud...Dave! Ha! Oh shit, that’s golden! I took Vincent there the day I met him and she pulled the same thing on me! She’s funny. I’d keep her around if I were you.”

A wide smile flew on Dave’s face. “No fuckin’ way! That is funny. And she was so sweet, but by Gods was she a handful! I could have let her ramble on for hours. I’ll have to bring up her relationship with Vincent and see about having a double date soon. Well, after Vin gets back to normal. How is the little guy, by the way?”

Mason’s face turned somber. “He’s gonna make it. He lost a decent amount of blood and he’s unconscious, but he’ll make it. I just hate seeing him this way. Dad had to carry me out of the house and into the clinic. Mom brought pizza and I ate a whole one, probably going to eat another. But I can’t get my mate off my mind, Dave. My heart aches because I can’t hear his voice. I can’t see his smile. All I can do is wait by his side.”

Dave felt for his best friend, but knew he needed to get Mason out of his funk. “Hey. You remember what you always told me when I was down when we were pups?”

The Alpha shook his head, but looked towards the door. He got slapped in the shoulder and brought his attention back to his Beta. Dave flicked the cigarette butt into the dark parking lot, crossed his arms, and turned to his Alpha. “Man up! You always told me to man up when I was getting all sad over some stupid nonsense. This isn’t the time for you to be all down. Your mate needs you. Your pack needs him. So I’m throwing your advice all those years ago right back at ya! Man up!”

Mason’s jaw dropped at his Beta. His wolf wanted to growl in anger for the disregard of respect, but Mason hushed his spirit. My friend is right. I needed that advice. I’m just acting like a sad sack when I should be strong. For both Vinnie and myself. A thin smile formed on the Alpha's face and he threw a light punch at Dave's arm. "You're right. Didn't have to be an ass about it, but you're right. Thank you, Dave."

Drawing out another cigarette, Dave chuckled and lit his cancer stick. "Any time. Especially if I get to yell at you. I take that shit every chance I get!" Earning another punch to the arm, Dave laughed hard. "I'll be in there shortly with the whiskey to celebrate. Grab another pizza and sit with Vin. He needs you more than I do right now."

Giving his Beta a pat on the shoulder, Mason withdrew back to the clinic. He grabbed another full pizza box and rejoined his mate. He sat in silence as he watched his mate sleep, listening to the heart monitor beep properly. After scarfing down the pizza, Mason held onto Vincent's hand and nodded off, resting his head at the edge of the bed.

***

"Hey...hey...oh, come on, big guy. I know you aren't that deep of a sleeper." Mason's eyes fluttered. Oh, Vin. Just a few more hours of sleep, please? I haven't slept properly since…

Vinnie!

The wolf's head shot up and brushed off the hand that laid on his scalp. His eyes laid on his mate. "There he is. There's my big, bad wolf." Breathing heavily, Mason's eyes began to well with tears as he heard his mate's voice and saw his eyes wide awake.

"V...Vinnie? You're awake?" Mason looked at every detail his mate possessed. The black-framed glasses, the ruffled up dirty blonde hair, and those hazel eyes that twinkled. Holding out his hand, Vincent grabbed it weakly. Oh, Gods. He's awake! "How long have you been up?"

Vincent smiled meekly. He had a slow drip of painkillers entering his IV, but he could still function at about half capacity. "For about an hour. Just been watching you sleep. It looks like you haven't slept soundly while I've been here."

Shaking his head, Mason let his tears fall but never let his voice stumble. "I'm not worried about me. It's all you, baby. Have you eaten? Can I bring you anything?"

"Too late. Caleb should be back with some of Morrine's sandwiches. I was so hungry when I woke up, I practically begged Caleb to bring me anything."

Morr's sandwiches sound awesome right now! And I'm not surprised with him begging for food. His appetite will drastically change now that the virus has had time to settle. "Hope you ordered something for me, pup."

Caleb wandered in the small clinic room with two bags of food and a drink carrier. "You think I'd forget my Alpha like that? Good to see you awake, Mace. Your snoring caused some patients to ask the staff some serious questions."

"I...do...not...snore!" Mason lightly flashed his amber eyes, but was met with giggling from Vincent. Any anger inside the Alpha drifted away.

"Yeah, ya do. I can testify for the court on that." Vincent turned his head to face the big man sitting next to him. "Could you hand me my sandwich, Mace?"

Mason nodded and as he got up, Caleb handed him a sandwich with a green sticker on it. "Morrine wanted Vincent to have this one. She sliced it several times so he can handle it better while he's here." As Mason opened it, he noticed that the sandwich was a footlong Mona Lisa, cut into eight smaller pieces. Morr, you're a freaking lifesaver! Bringing the wrapped sandwich over to the rolling TV tray by the bed, the wolf offered to feed his mate, but was respectfully declined.

Vincent was able to grab the sandwich and eat it. It took him longer to eat it, but he was able to stomach solid food properly. After almost an hour, he was able to finish the whole sandwich. His mind wanted him to stop halfway, since that was when he usually felt full. But there was a lingering pull on his mind and stomach to keep going. Jeez, was I that hungry? Maybe. It could also be the lycanthropy kicking in. Yeah, that makes sense. After he finished the sandwich, he crumpled the aluminum foil and set it on the tray.

...what? I'm...still hungry? What is going on? His eyes darted to Mason, who was halfway done with his second sandwich. The mage began eyeing the stromboli with envy. I want that sandwich.

Woah! Where did that come from? That's Mace's. Did I just...demand for that sandwich? Jeez, this wolf thing is getting interesting.

Mason took another bite and peeked up at his mate. Umm. Where did those ravenous eyes come from? He followed the trail from Vincent's eyes to his...sandwich? He just ate a whole one, and he's...still hungry? Mason smiled and handed the remaining sandwich to his mate. "Want this, Vinnie? You seem a little hungrier than normal."

Vincent quickly snatched the sandwich from Mason's paws and took a bite. I'm feeling a decent amount of my strength coming back. Just from eating a big sandwich? That's not right. From how I felt when I woke up, I should be at least bedridden for a couple of days. Another perk of being turned? That's pretty cool. The mage found himself able to grip the sandwich tighter and take bigger bites than the previous sandwich. Finishing it off, he had both shifters staring in amazement. Deep down though...he still felt it. "Does this place have a vending machine? I could use some chips."

Caleb bent over and held his sides, letting a monstrous laugh out. "Gods, Little B! You just ate more food than I did. I'm full and you're still ready for more? That's great. I can head somewhere and order more food. What sounds good?"

Meat. Lots of meat. A burger! Big and juicy burger! "I would love a burger, if that's okay."

Caleb smiled and chuckled again at his friend's appetite. "One monster burger coming up. I'll even get you a large fry. JD's okay?"

Yes! Yes! That a good meat burger! Vincent nodded to Caleb, but mentally shook his head. What the Hell is up with my thoughts? I just acted like a raven...ous...oh my Gods! That...explains a lot! Vincent nodded his head gleefully and watched Caleb leave to go on his mission.

"Hey, Mace? So..when should I be noticing my wolf's thoughts?"

Mason put his hands behind his head and leaned back in his stiff chair. "You should in a couple days. Why?"

"I think he's already in my head. When Caleb mentioned that burger...oh Gods that burger sounds so good right now! Jeez! My thoughts are starting to be really weird. Very incomplete sentence-like."

Blinking wildly, Mason leaned forward in thought. I've never heard of a wolf mind developing so quickly! Gonna need to call Dad in on this one. But first. "Hang on a sec, pup." He dug his phone out and shot a text to Caleb, telling him to make the order for two more burgers. If Mason's judgement was correct, his mate was going to need more food. "I think your wolf is developing faster than normal. It may be because a full moon is next week. It's just a thought, but I'll need to talk with Dad some on this. Sad to say I'm a little in the dark on this one."

Vinnie nodded. So if my wolf is coming in fast, I need to start getting ready for more changes. "That's okay, big guy. I'm just happy to be here with you." The mage blinked a couple times and stared at his mate. But the longer Vincent stared, the more he blinked. And the more he blinked, the more and more blurry Mason's face became. "What the...my vision's getting bad. Do I need to clean my glasses?"

"Here, pup. Let me do that for you." Vincent smiled and took off his glasses and handed them to Mason. As he watched the wolf clean his set of glasses, Vincent began to see clearly.

"Umm. Mace? I...I think something's happening." Vincent kept blinking steadily and watched as his mate came into full crystal-clear view. He lifted his hands to test his thought. I...can see. Clearly! Without glasses! Holy shit! "Mace! I can see! I can see!"

A fat grin washed over Mason's face. "Well. That's new, too. Vision doesn't get sharp for several days after your turned. Pretty soon, body hair will start to grow and you'll be able to smell scents better. And at this rate, I wouldn't doubt it if that happens before we go to bed."

Bed. Bed! Mate! I want mate! Vincent grunted as a force pounded on the inside of his skull. Putting his hand on his temple he leaned back. Mason stood quickly and rushed to calm his mate. "Vin? Is your head hurting? Inside or out?"

Through the grunts and mental struggle. Vincent was able to get a few words out. "In...side...Gods! Fuck!"

"Vin. Your wolf is knocking on your mental doorstep. You won't shift until next week, but it's healthy to let your wolf speak through your human body. Try thinking about switching your mind to your wolf's. Let him take control. I can talk with him and help him develop."

Nodding through the irritation, Vincent tried to nod. 'Kay...switch minds...okay wolfie, time to meet Mace, I guess. He found a ball of energy in his mind and pulled on it. Bringing it to the front of his mind, Vincent felt himself floating into the darkness of his thoughts as the ball of energy drifted towards the back of his eyes.

Human. You human? Vincent was startled by the deeper voice. To him, the voice resembled his own, but sounded scruffy and as if he had something stuck in his throat.

Umm...yes. Well, not anymore, I guess. Are you my wolf?

Yes. I wolf. Your wolf. Strong wolf. You not strong...but strong. How this?

I think you're talking about my magic. I'm a mage.

Magic? How do? We strong?

Yes, I...well, we are strong. We can make ice. Weapons and shields. We can also play with shadows. Helps us move fast and do other things.

Fast! And strong! This good. I like good. I strong wolf. How I come to be?

Well, I was a human, and I met my mate. His name is Mason. He likes to be called Mace, and he is an Alpha wolf shifter. We just completed our bond, and I guess that's how you came to be.

I...mated...to Alpha? I belong to Alpha?

Mace and I belong to each other. Apparently, we were destined by the Gods.

Destined mate! Interest!

Do you mean interesting?

Yes! Word not so good with.

You are doing just fine. Would you like to talk to Mace? Get to meet him?

Yes! Happy! Want mate to talk! Vincent pushed himself aside and let his wolf float towards the front of his mind.

Mason watched as his mate sat with his eyes closed. They must be getting to know each other. If they're having full conversation, that means his wolf is fully developed. That's crazy for this to happen so quickly!

Vincent's eyes shot open and started darting around wildly. What this place?

This is a hospital. My body...our body...was hurt when we mated with Mace. It would be best to sit still and rest while you talk to Mace.

Yes. Feel tired. You are good human. Smart human.

"Vincent's wolf, I assume?" The young wolf turned to stare at the large man sitting next to him. Big wolf! Stronger wolf! Alpha wolf! Mate? Mate!

"Yes. I wolf. Who Vin...cent?" Mason was mildly amused by his mate's new voice. That's almost cute. It's coming from deep within his throat. He sounds like he's trying to act tough.

"You are Vincent. That is my mate's name. That is your name."

"I Vincent. You Mace. Human said you name Mace."

"Yep. I take it you know that this place isn't for you to run wild in?"

Vincent nodded. "Human tell me to sit. I sit. You Alpha? You mate me?"

A smile came to the Alpha. Good. Vincent can still talk with him. That's a relief. "I am the Alpha of the local pack."

Excitement ran through the young wolf's body. "Pack? There is pack? Pack big? Pack strong?"

"The pack isn't large, but it is tightly knit. So it is strong. It isn't a normal pack. It has many different kinds of shifters. It makes us stronger."

"What shifter kind? There wolf? Bear?"

"We have plenty of wolves. There is a tiger. She's the one who made those sandwiches from earlier."

"Sandwich. Yes! Hot meat! That good. Is tiger good?"

A chuckle came from Mason's lungs. "Yes, she is good. She picks on me, but I like it. We also have a lion and a leopardess. The lion is your Enforcer. He should be here in a while."

"Lion! Excite! Enforcer, too. He strong lion?"

"Very. His name is Caleb. He is bringing you more food. I'm guessing you are still growing, so you need more." The mention of food caused Vincent to become very excited. He swung his legs off the bed, as if he were to stand. Mason quickly and gently placed his hand on Vincent's. "Now, now. Your body isn't healed yet. It would be best to stay laying down."

Vincent's wolf felt his body's frailness and agreed. Need rest. Hate lay down on back. I feel submit. I no submit. Must get better.

That's right, bud. Just relax. I know it may seem like you are submitting, but you are letting our body get better. Once we are better, we can run around more.

Yes! Run! I rest to run. Mason watched as his mate laid back down and fumbled with the blankets. "What this do?"

"These go over you. They help you stay warm."

"I like warm. Warm is good." Vincent looked over the Alpha once more and cocked his head to the side in confusion. "You Alpha. Why nice? Alpha need mean and rule. Must lead."

Smiling, Mason chuckled again. "I do lead, but I lead by being nice. I can be strict when it's called for."

Furrowing his brow, Vincent turned to look at his knees. Thoughts and questions flowed through his mind. Looking back at Mason, he spoke again. "I mated to Alpha. That make me Alpha?"

"You are the pack's Mated Alpha. I can tell by your voice that you are a strong wolf. My mate is lucky to have you."

Vincent smiled widely, as if the wolf wanted to show its teeth. "I strong wolf. Human strong. You strong. Pack strong. Good. All good!"

Mason smiled. Vinnie's wolf is very interested in strength and power. Maybe talking with my wolf would be good for him. "Vincent. Would you like to speak with my wolf?"

The body in the bed practically jumped out in delight. "Yes! I want! Meet wolf!"

Nodding, Mason closed his eyes and let his wolf come to the front of his mind. Hello, my trusted friend. My mate's wolf wishes to meet you. He is still coming together, so play nice.

Yes. I will. My mate. My wolf mate. Let me speak.

Mason opened his golden eyes and gazed at the smaller man in the bed. "My mate. My wolf."

"Alpha wolf. Mate wolf. Good to talk. You strong. Strong wolf."

"You bare mark. My mark." Letting a low rumble from his chest, Mason stood and sat at the edge of the bed. "Smell good. Like mine."

Vincent's eyes widened. "I no mark you. I want mark. On you."

"Soon. When you shift. When you are ready."

Nodding, the smaller wolf went back to furrowing his brow in thought. Many question. Want know more. Searching within himself, the wolf felt conflicted by a primary instinct of his. Yes. Must ask! Squinting his eyes, Vincent turned to the Alpha. "Yes. I need submit. But not want submit. Why?"

The Alpha smirked and gazed deep into his mate's hazel eyes.

"Reason simple. You Alpha, too."

Copyright © 2020 astone2292; All Rights Reserved.
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Chapter Comments



I loved how you did the conversations between both wolf's which helps the turned mate understand better. As like everyone else, I have never seen that before. That was brilliant. I still think Vincent has more learning on the turning process and to get Lei's and Elaine's input might help a little. And maybe an older council (EC) member might be able to help there. But I am sure you already thought of something since I am still so far behind in the story since I am 9 chapters away from chapter 32.

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Leave it to Vinnie to be as uncommon in his shifting as he has been in his magecraft. His wolf is an alpha. He is going to be a real force to be reckoned with.

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I absolutely LOVE Vin's puppy! Trying so hard to be a grown up wolf already, and absolutely shaking with that happy puppy quiver!

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2 minutes ago, Kitt said:

I absolutely LOVE Vin's puppy! Trying so hard to be a grown up wolf already, and absolutely shaking with that happy puppy quiver!

I love this comment! I think you're going to find Vincent's wolf (commonly referred to as VincentW in the comments) is acting like a puppy, but has more adult intentions. :gikkle:

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This is an exciting plot twist; following the physical and intellectual development if a shifter's wolf is going to make fascinating reading, especially because Vincent is going to learn how to be an Alpha along with the wolf's development. I do not know of ever having seen that process in any shifter story. Your story has had a few slower spots, but this twist opens up a very unique opportunity for your creative skills. 'You go Astone!

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