I found my little group in front of the computers. I sighed with my loss of time because I had to deal with Margo. I was going to have to deal with Margo or some therapist while I stayed here. I should have told her about Levi. I should have said something about Jo. But I forgot. I didn’t think past my own rage.
The computers in the computer room were archaic things by any standards. Big tube screens, old school internet. This wasn’t going to work for me. I was surprised we didn’t have dial up. What was this the 90s?
There was a nurse, or IT nobody sitting at the front desk with his feet up on the desk and his nose in a comic book pretending he was reading som other book like anyone in a mental facility cared what you read. But I guess when you think appearances mean something you do what you have to do. I felt out of place, out of my own skin here. I had no make up and my nails were chipping. The only thing good was I could do my hair however I wanted, they couldn’t take that from me.
I cleared my throat when the boy at the desk ignored me. His little heart jumped and his feet slammed to the floor like I’d caught him doing something he wasn’t supposed to be doing. I asked with a grin, “Can I get into any of the archives from here?”
He raised an eyebrow, “Why would you want to do that?”
“A little light reading, what can I say.” I lied.
“No one reads that for fun.”
I smiled at him. “I do.” And I had as a child. My reading was limited. I read the accountings of hunters, and the histories of man. I read whatever they’d let me take back to my room.
“The digital archives can’t be reached from here. And I can’t get you any of the old texts from the Archives. Talk to the librarian.”
“Can I do that now?” I asked. “While I’m supposed to be here?”
He shrugged and picked up his book. “I only run the lab I don’t know what you can and can’t do.”
I frowned and sat down having been so rudely dismissed. I wanted to run a weave past the boy’s chair and tip him backwards. That would teach him, but I didn’t. I behaved myself. So proud of myself.
I sat down next to Jo who was playing a game of solitaire. “Can I go to the library or do I have to wait?”
Duke chuckled. “Computers not good enough for you?”
I shook my head. “I need to get into the Archives, can’t do this from here. I’ll do it the old fashioned way even if it’s slower.”
“You can’t go to the library now. After this when it’s free time.” Jo said softly into her computer screen.
I reached across the distance and placed my hand on her knee. “Thanks.” There was a soft spark and Jo turned to look at me, her brown eyes were almost golden and the smell of forest swept through the air. She looked at me without fear for the first time since I’d met her. “You feel it too?”
She nodded. “I don’t know what it means.”
I smiled. “Did you know your parents?” I asked. There were a lot of reasons why a twenty something might not know she was a werewolf and found here in the pschye ward of the Infirmary guarded by a bunch of idiot Venatori.
Jo shook her head. “My parents died when I was young. Car crash.”
“I’m sorry.” I said. It was tough losing parents. Sage lost his parents in the same fashion.
“Did you get bit by a wolf or a dog or anything recently?”
She shook her head again. “No. Why?”
“There are only two reasons why you’d be a werewolf.” I whispered so no one would hear.
Jo shouted, “I’m not a werewolf.” She covered her mouth and hung her head.
I chuckled and she hid even further. “You are. What you feel is my connection to the pack.”
“You’re not a werewolf.” She said. “You are Venatori. I’m just a human.”
I shook my head. “My gut says you are wolf. You were born a wolf, and you are nearing your change. This moon or the next you’ll change. And I pray you aren’t near anyone here when you do.”
Lori giggled, “They lock us all in our rooms at night.”
I nodded. “I know. But it’s a dangerous time for a pup.”
I patted Jo on the head knee and smiled. “I’ll get you help.”
“Why can’t you help me?” She asked.
“I’ll do my best, duckling.”
She smiled at my term of endearment, “I don’t think it works.”
“Sure it does, duckling. Just because you are a wolf doesn’t change it.”
Duke stood up and helped Cliff’s sad form out the door as the bell tolled for our next activity to present itself.