Preface

I stood before the Pack feeling awkward and self-conscious. I shuffled my feet and tried to smile, but it came out as more of a grimace. I was standing next to Sam and he was grinning. Well, okay, so he never grinned, but he didn't look so pissed off.

I chanced a peek at him and winced. What had I gotten myself into? The rest of the Pack—all three of them—could sense the anticipation and the anxiety. They knew something was up and they wanted to know what it was.

"Quiet," Sam boomed. The other guys fell silent and stared at him with wide eyes. "I have an announcement to make," he said authoritatively.

I sighed and that got me a dark look from Sam. Guess I wasn't supposed to take any of the attention off of him. I pushed my fingers through my thick brown hair and slouched down, folding my arms across my chest.

"Lilith and I have decided to become mates," Sam said, sounding less pissy and more…irritated. Hey, it was actually an improvement.

Despite what everyone thinks—and what the movies say—becoming a werewolf's mate is not some big drawn out process. There is nothing to it really. Two people—two werewolves—announce that they are mates and that's that. If another werewolf comes sniffing around one of those mates, they can be thoroughly beat the hell up.

So, now Sam had announced it and I was the proud mate of the Alpha male of our small Pack. Woo.

A whistle and a hoot went up into the night and I blushed straight to my roots. This was not exactly my idea of a good time, but they seemed to be enjoying themselves. Why had I ever agreed to be Sam's mate? He was so serious and I was…not. I was impulsive and carefree.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not completely immature. I know how and when to be serious, but Sam is serious all the time. A funeral? He's serious. A wedding? He's serious. A circus show? He's serious. Half-naked Angelina Jolie could come stumbling through the woods and he would demand to know where she came from, who she was, what she was doing in the woods, and where the hell were her clothes?

"Congrats man!" Jay shouted.

"Come on, kiss her!" Grant whooped. "You know you want to!"

So then Sam grabbed me in what he probably assumed was a romantic dip and kissed me. It was…less than pleasing. And I could have throttled Grant.

First of all, what was with the dip? Were we dancing? No, so it was pointless. Second of all, it was kind of painful. My back cracked all the way down and I was kind of arched awkwardly, being almost completely supported by Sam. If his arms gave, I was hitting the ground and there would be no way to save myself. All I could hope to accomplish would be taking Sam down with me. And third of all, the kiss.

It was horrible to say the least.

I haven't had too many kisses in my lifetime, but this was easily the worst. His lips were dry and he kind of smashed my nose a little. I was afraid he was going to scrub the lower half of my face off with those sandpaper lips of his and there was absolutely no spark, no fireworks, no chemistry, no nothing.

When it was finally over, Sam hauled me back into an upright position—my back protesting the whole way—and wrapped an arm possessively around me, giving a squeeze.

Some girls might be pleased by this show of affection, but I knew what it really was. He was just showing his dominance, daring any of the other wolves to try and take away his mate. He was staking his claim and letting everyone know it. It pissed me off.

I wanted to pull away, but didn't dare. Sam was the Alpha after all, and that would not look good.

"Let's phase in celebration!" Mike hollered, tossing his head back to howl at the moon.

"Agreed," Sam nodded. He showed none of the exuberance Mike had. That was the problem with me being Sam's mate. He was pretty boring. Everything had to be done his way, he didn't tolerate mess-ups, and I don't think the guy would know what fun was if it came up and introduced itself.

His arm dropped from my shoulders and all the boys began to strip. I sighed and shook my head. I had been around these boys since I was six so their nudity really didn't bother me so much. Sure it was still awkward and I didn't watch them or anything, but I wasn't going to blush and giggle like a schoolgirl.

I stripped off my own clothes and folded them up into a tree in the hopes of keeping them from getting torn to shreds. That had happened once and I had been forced to walk through the woods naked all the way home. It was not something I wanted to repeat a second time.

And then we phased.

There was nothing more wonderful then phasing with your Pack because you wanted to, not because you had to. We had no choice but to phase on a full moon. It was horrible and it was painful. It was nothing like this. Nothing like the way our bodies just dropped into our wolf forms and nothing like the way it felt so right.

I shook my wolf head and yipped happily. I may not have been pleased with being Sam's new mate, but those problems seemed to fade away as I donned my wolf skin.

Sam sidled up next to me, easily the largest wolf in our small Pack, and nipped at my ear to get my attention. I glanced at him and tried not to roll my eyes. I cocked my head to the side. What? I was asking.

He tapped his nose against my cheek. Stay close. He was telling me.

I tossed my head and took a step away, flicking my tail. Whatever,

Sam shook his head and wandered off to do whatever it is Alpha wolves do. I looked around, wanting something to play with and spotted my target. I dropped my front half to the snow covered earth and wiggled my butt in the air.

Jay yipped at me and I let out a warning growl. He rolled his eyes at cocked his head to the side, letting his tongue loll out of his mouth, It's only a bunny, he said to me.

I shook my head and wiggled my butt again. But it's mine.

Then the bunny lifted its head and sniffed the air, its eyes wide and shifty. It caught my scent and took off. I was after it in a heartbeat, having no intention of actually hurting it, but the chase was always so much fun.

It hooked a sharp left and I veered after it, ignoring Sam's warning howl. He wanted me to come back, to stop being so foolish. I ran faster, loving the way it felt to defy an order. It had always been the easiest for me to defy Sam and that made me happy. The only reason I was his mate now was because I was the only female in the Pack. He would have chosen someone—anyone—else if there had been a selection to choose from.

The bunny darted left and right, panicked by my large form and I slowed a little, waiting to see what it would do. It paused, little chest heaving, head swiveling, eyes darting around. Then it took off again and I took up the chase once more.

I was gaining ground, catching up, when I realized where we were headed. Half of my brain—the human half—tried to make my legs stop pumping, but the other half of my brain—the werewolf half—urged me forward. Run! Catch it! Chase! It said, and somehow the werewolf in me overpowered the human and I continued after the stupid thing.

It darted out of the trees and across the road and my large frame barreled after it. I made it about halfway across the road before I managed to stop myself. I lifted my head, my eyes widening in horror and then a car slammed into me and I yelped, bouncing off the front bumper. I flew backwards, skidded over the ice covered road and then I rolled into a ditch and phased back to human form instinctively.

I lifted my head out of the ditch and stared after the car that had hit me for a fraction of a second a scowl marring my features, a small amount of blood dripping down my temple, before ducking down into the ditch again and phasing back. I stood in my wolf from and shook myself off before bouncing back into the woods.

Sam was not going to be happy about this.

~0.o~0.o~0.o~0.o~0.o~0.o~

InkxWish - I don't know if they'll get their own allies or not. I'll have to wait and see. The Hunters for sure get some because they know they have smaller numbers and they SUCK! Lol. Your Booyah made me laugh.