Alex and I shared a simple kiss before the three wolves and I were off for a quick run. But thanks to what we were all the people saw was a guy running with three dogs. Though we did have a few kids stop and ask about the tattoos on my arms and the really big dogs. But kids were sometimes immune to the veil. They would believe anything they saw, and no one would believe them even if they said something. One of them even commented on the moving tattoo.
We came back home to find food waiting for all of us. Alex grinned at me as he pressed a kiss to my lips “Gonna seclude yourself again?”
I nodded. “Yeah. Safer for now.”
Alex smiled. “Can I watch?”
“Of course,” I said. He grabbed my hand and the three wolves followed us into the room. The sky was starting to darken we might catch most of the eclipse, still total eclipse was a while away. And it was a new moon tonight – why they were changing we’d have to figure out later.
I sat down on the floor, Alex sat next to me and the boy laid down with their heads in my lap. I rubbed each one of their heads between the eyes and they closed them to enjoy the tender touch. “I don’t think I’ll ever get used to this.”
“To what having werewolves for brothers?”
Alex laughed. “When you put it that way, that too. But I meant a family I would do anything for.”
“Family isn’t about blood,” I said as I let the pack magic out. I didn’t have to reach into Fae to find it this time I knew exactly where it was, how it felt, loved the feel of it. Alex shivered next to me as the magic washed over him too. The boy’s fur shifted and their bones cracked and snapped. Alex jumped away – afraid of what was happening, but not on the omg I’m going to die level. It was fear he was going to change too. He felt the magic raging through him and I watched Alex trying to reassure him.
“Holy fuck!” Alex shouted. His skin was covered in goosebumps as he watched in awe and horror as the boys returned to human form. “That has to hurt.”
I nodded. “It does, and it’s taxing on their systems. Some die in the process.”
Alex stared at me. “How do you know all this?”
I shrugged. “Pack memory I guess. Though I’ve been witness to a few deaths and successful changes because of Sage.”
The three boys lay panting in my lap as Alex and I watched the remnants of their transformation leave the air. It was like a shimmer or a mirage on the hot sand. They lie naked and breathing, Faelen much more heavily than the other two. The strain on his change was greater even if he had already changed once before. I gave my brothers some props for that.
Alex bent down and ran his fingers through Fae’s hair. “You alright?”
He nodded slowly. “I think the shift was too soon for him.” Rider and Laker were both sitting up already completely oblivious to the fact they were naked. Or maybe not so oblivious. I stood up picking up Fae with ease.
“Show off,” Alex muttered.
I stuck my tongue out at him as I laid the young wolf pup on the bed. “Sleep or food?” I asked him.
“Both?” He grinned up at me.
I nodded. “I’ll have food brought in. You need clothes, so after the eclipse viewing hopefully you can come with.” I told him. He was already asleep though.
“He’s going to be alright? Alex asked again.
I nodded. “Yeah. Fae’s a weaker wolf than the twins. If I feel pack magic the way I think I do, they’d be rival Alphas.”
“If we weren’t twins, or yours,” Rider said.
“Well, I can’t lead our little pack if I’m going to be truly neutral.” I said.
“But we are family.”
I nodded. “Always.” I wrapped an arm around my little brother. “But if I’m attached to a pack they will think I pick favorites.”
Rider grinned. “But we are always going to be favorites.”
I nodded. “Yes, but if someone else is pack leader I get one more voice on my side of things.”
“You think.” Rider’s grin widened. “I disagree with a lot of your things.”
“Oh yeah.” I laughed. “Like what?”
Alex laughed as he tossed the boys a pair of sweats and a t-shirt from the drawers of the room we were in. Thankfully most of the boys were the same size roughly. “Yeah like what?”
“Well there is the whole meal plan thing. I think we need more variety – we are wolves after all.” Rider’s smile was playful as he continued, “And the idea that we have to go to school.”
“You aren’t getting out of that boy,” Alex said. “All of you are enrolled at a private school close to the Night Life building. Dorian found one while Nox was dead. I haven’t had time to deal with any of it.”
“You are paying for the kids to go to school?” I asked.
Alex nodded. “Better than the public education system. Tell me you’d be okay with that?”
I shrugged. “If that’s what Dorian says I should do I’m not going to question it. Or you for that matter. I just figured the money could be spent doing other things.”
Alex shook his head. “Family first Nox.”
“I didn’t mean on other people Alex. But clothes, food, a roof over our heads.”
Alex chuckled. “I need to show you my bank accounts some day.” He wrapped his arms around me. “Come on boys, let’s go watch that eclipse and then go shopping.”