Dyson looked up at the early morning sky from his kneeling position near the base of a tree. Whoever they were this pack was good. They left barely any evidence that they were in his territory, but he was an experienced tracker and he knew they were near. He might not be able to pinpoint exactly where they were, but just knowing they were there was half the battle won. They wouldn’t have surprise on their side when they finally did decide to attack.
He knew what they were after, they wanted what every shifter would want once word got out, Kenzi. The only saving grace was that he knew they would never hurt her, so even if he did fail to protect her he knew she would be safe until the others could find her. He’d sent word to Trick that morning, and through him to Lachlan, from now on if he didn’t check in once a day the alarm would be sounded and the cavalry would come running.
Getting up he decided to take the walk he told Kenzi he was going on, he needed to send a message to Trick as soon as possible anyway. He knew he should probably tell her what he suspected, but he didn’t want her to panic while she was still so new to all of this. If her emotions got away from her, or panic began to set in, her wolf side could take over and force a shift. A forced shift was disorienting and painful, it wasn’t what he wanted her first time to be. Once she turned for the first time on her own, after her wolf finally settled in as a part of her, then he would tell her about the threat he sensed looming. He knew it might not be the best way to handle this, that she might resent him for keeping things from her, things that she had every right to know. This was the only way he knew how to do this though, he didn’t see any other option that gave her her best chance.
If the shift was forced, and Kenzi rejected the wolf inside of her, she may never find her way to acceptance and peace. She may never become whole again, as she should be. Wolves who split themselves in two, who adopted a me or my wolf mentality, they never lasted very long. One part cannot exist without the other, they were connected, two halves a single personality. Hopefully Kenzi would be allowed to come to that truth on her own, before things came to a head. If not, he only hoped that when the wolf does rise to her aid, she will be able to accept her as a part of who she is now. That’s what the lessons in Lore were about, it was the only fail-safe he could come up with, if she understood her wolf before it came, maybe she wouldn’t be so afraid of it. Maybe this could all work out in the end.
Kenzi stood in front of the stove and tried to decide where to start. She wanted to cook Dyson some breakfast for when he got back from his walk, as a sort of a thank you for putting up with her for so long, but she wasn’t the best cook ever so she needed to keep it simple. How hard could it be to cook some eggs? Maybe add some toast or something as a way to stretch it into an actual meal.
She knew she was lying to herself, sure she wanted to do something nice for D-man, but that wasn’t the whole reason for her newest endeavor. She was trying to distract herself, get out of her own head if only for a little while. Trying to cook was just the only way she could think to do that, do something mindless and maybe her mind would slow down and take a breather.
She was just so filled with all of these different thoughts and emotions it was beginning to make her brain hurt. She was so confused and turned around that she didn’t know how she felt about anything anymore, the simplest things were nothing but a jumble now.
Bo, Dyson, Trick, Lachlan, herself.
None of it made any sense anymore, and she knew that as long as she was conflicted like this, all tied up in knots and tangles, she wouldn’t be able to move forward like she needed to. Like she wanted to. So she would cook and take it one step at a time, try to get her head on straight while she was alone and had the time to think things through without worrying that something of her thoughts would show on her face and D-man would get worried. So first things first.
Trick had always been good to her, in his own way, but until recently she’d thought of him as Bo’s Trick. Much like everything else in their lives, he was Bo’s first and hers second, if at all. Which made total sense, since he was her grand-father or whatever, but now she didn’t know what he was anymore. He’d helped her when she needed it and even kept it all a secret from Bo, just because she’d asked. He would always be what he is to Bo, blood was binding probably especially to someone who used to be known as the Blood King, but what did this make him to her?
Were they friends now? Acquaintances? Something more, less, somewhere in between?
She knew she couldn’t truly answer that without talking with Trick, but maybe she could figure out where she stood now. He’d helped her when he didn’t have to. He kept her secrets and went the extra mile for her. So maybe the real question wasn’t were they friends, but were they family. In her experience only family stuck their neck out for you and went above and beyond. So maybe that’s what they were now, family. Like her and Bo. Smiling at the thought, she decided to just let it stand there for the moment, at least until she and Trick could have a face to face so she could see where he stood on the matter.
Dyson and Bo were sort of intertwined for her.
Did she care about Dyson, yes.
Did she love him, maybe.
Did he love her, probably not.
Who was she kidding who would love her when they had Bo waiting for them? Even if he did feel for her what she felt for him, could she do that to Bo? Could she really break the girlfriend’s code so badly?
Uh! All these questions had no answers yet, and all they did was make her headache worse. She’d just have to shelve that for a later time, like never. Never totally worked for her.
Moving on to Lachlan, seriously what was up with that guy? One second he was evil, then he was good, then he was somewhere in the snarky middle. They had sort of become maybe friends during the whole crisis of her turning, and she thought maybe she had earned at least a little of his respect with her refusal to bow down and lick boot. Though with his stone cold poker face it was a little hard to tell sometimes exactly what he thought of her, or anyone else for that matter. Could a human even be “friends” with a Light Fae leader? That thought froze her, body and mind. Oh, right, she wasn’t human anymore.
She had never really sat down and thought about the changes that would cause in her life beyond the obvious ones anyway, well she supposed now was as good a time as any. So now for herself, what was she now, other than a complete mess?
She was a shifter, but she didn’t even really know what that meant. Sure she understood the concept, she had that one pretty down already, spending so much time around Dyson and listening to Bo talk about him even when he wasn’t around gave her a good idea of what a shifter was. Add to that all the lessons and Lore she’d been learning lately, and she knew a lot about shifters. That didn’t really help her though, because while she knew a lot about shifters, she still knew next to nothing about being a shifter.
Could she be a shifter? Could she really let her human-ness go? If she couldn’t, was there even an alternative? She knew she couldn’t go back, there was no reversing the change, but was there a middle ground? She still didn’t have the answers to all those questions, but hopefully she’d find it before she had to leave her woodland oasis and re-enter the big bad world.
Looking down at her “meal” she made she felt a little better. She might not have answered all of the questions burning holes in her mind, but at least she figured out what most of the questions really were now. She knew where she stood now with the Trick-mister and former Ash-hole, and she worked through some of her own insecurities and issues, now all she needed to do was find out where to stash Dyson.
Was he destined to stay in the friend zone or did she owe it to herself to give him a chance at the something more arena? Shrugging she figured that was something better left up to the both of them, not just her, and Bo-Bo would fall back into place once everything else was stowed away.
Hearing Dyson coming she closed her eyes for a minute and shoved all her crazy back in a box and decided to just go with the flow. If nothing else she had to admit that their flow was good.
Bo couldn’t take it anymore!
It had been two weeks and she still hadn’t heard word one from Kenzi or Dyson. They should have been back by now, two weeks was plenty long enough to get a handle on the basics, at least enough to come home. Once Kenzi was back here where she belonged, they could figure out the rest together. Kenzi had helped her gain control of her succubus abilities, why wouldn’t she come home already so she could return the favor.
Lauren was now being “loaned out” to the Dark, what the crap was that about? She thought the Light and the Dark were like cats and dogs, born enemies. Every time she had ever gotten a Light Fae in the same room with someone from the other side of the line it was a snark fest at best and a bloodbath at worst. How could they trust Vex to keep Lauren safe, it wasn’t like he would be weeping in regret if something happened to her.
“Trick!” Marching down the steps into his “lair” always seemed weird to her, things somehow seemed more civilized above in the bar, but she had to get his help. He was the only one she could think of, besides Hale, that Dyson might be keeping in contact with. Maybe he could at least tell her when they would be coming home. Then once Dyson was back on her side he could help her get the Ash to rescind Lauren’s punishment and they could all be back together again.
“Bo, now is truly not a good time. I am going to see Lachlan on a matter of some importance.” What did he mean he didn’t have time right now, this was important. The Ash could wait, he was a grade A dick anyway, a little waiting might do him some good.
“Why would you – never mind, that’s not important right now. I need to get in touch with Kenzi and Dyson.” If anyone could help her find them it would be Trick. Finger crossed, since she already struck out with Hale.
“Why?” He wasn’t paying her much attention, still searching his room for something.
“So I can tell them to come home already, enough is enough.” Why didn’t anyone understand that? They had both been gone too long as it is. She needed them both back here, life just wasn’t the same without them.
“Now is not the time for them to return, they will come back once Kenzi is ready and not a second sooner.” She watched Trick storm out leaving her behind. What had gotten into him? He acted like them being gone was a good thing instead of the catastrophe that it really was.
Well if Trick wouldn’t help her, she knew someone who would. She just needed to make an appointment with her doctor. Good thing she was neutral so it didn’t matter what team Lauren was currently being forced to bat for.
Vex settled back and watched Evony circle the good doc, this probably wasn’t what she really meant when she said to keep her informed. Or maybe it was. It was so hard to keep track of things like that sometimes.
Either way when he got the word from on high that he was going to be playing hostess he gave his girl a ring-a-ding ding and passed the news along. Even as scattered as he was at times he knew this could go in a million different bad directions and it all depended squarely on the reaction of one fine ass succubus. Cause yea, that was another thing that was mentioned in that little meeting, the neutral party involved wasn’t getting involved at all. This was strictly between the sides and no sides in between. If Bo got her bra in a bunch and started mucking about he had a feeling that no one really knew what was supposed to get done about it.
If this was anyone else the path would be clear, kill the indecisive bugger and move on. However, Bo had power on her side if not smarts and everyone knew power trumped every time. Of course her power wasn’t wholly her own either, she had connections by familial and felt out for herself. To go at Bo even when she deserved it would be a bit touchy, and not in the good way. It would all depend on what way the wind was blowing, and right now it was all blowing right up Bo’s skirt. So here they were circling a terrified human none of them were even allowed to eat. Oh what a world.
“What do you think Evvy? Will she do it for ya?” He didn’t know why she was circling the bint in the first damn place. This wasn’t a horse auction, they weren’t seeing if she was good enough to have a new home, this was already a done deal. But, hey if her excellency wanted to have a little fun human baiting, as long as nothing crossed any well laid out lines that would get his ass spanked in a not so fun way he was all for it.
“Oh, it’s all fine I just can’t see it is all?” He knew a game opener when he heard one, and like he said he was all for it.
“Can’t see what? Her hiney cause you been staring at it for a good while now and if you ain’t seeing it then you got bigger problems than this. Good thing we got us a doc in the house, eh.”
“No her “hiney” is easy enough to see, what I can’t see is why Bo seems so enamoured with this one. I mean I’ve seen her bounce her tight ass this way and that reeling in some of the finest pieces of meat currently on or off the market. What makes this one so special she keeps going back for second helpings? Can you see it, am I just blind?” Oh, ho, so that was her play. Not exactly where he thought she might walk this line, but interesting nonetheless. It was clearly laid out that for all intents and purposes the doc was part of the Dark for at least the next month. They couldn’t interfere with her doctoring, couldn’t block her from seeing any of her Light Fae patients, but if she stepped out of line they were allowed to punish her like they would any human that got too cheeky. Within reason of course. They did have to give her back at the end.
His question now was, does he play along and hope for the chance to administer a spanking or does he play it down and hope for a good word in on the other side. While having some people on the other side might make certain things a bit easier, they would also make certain things a bit harder and really he wasn’t one for making friends. Spanking it is.
“Nah, never could see it myself. If she was going to be muff diving on anyone I thought it would be her live in. Nothing like having your favorite munchies on tap, now is there? Plus Kenzi just has that special something to her, she’s not average.” The good doc got angrier and angrier as he talked, he had seen her jealousy towards Kenzi before and knew just what buttons to push now. Kenzi was indulged and before her little transformation (mum’s the word on that) had a get out of Fae-ville free card that the naughty doc desperately wanted. Now they just needed to crank her a bit higher and the poor thing would just explode with it all. Insides to outsides.
“Maybe she’s just biding her time, learning control on the unimportant masses until she can safely have her pet? After all, how gauche to kill your pet on accident.” He could see that jaw muscle ticking, her tongue had to be in tatters by now. Bad news for Bo there. Just a little bit more.
“Well that is the good thing about Kenzi-” He got no further, before the eruption.
“There are no good things about Kenzi, she’s a self centered over indulged brat.” Sore spot reached, now it would be easier to tap it on the regular. He gave her less than a week before she was forced over someone’s knee.
Trick pushed aside his worries about Bo and made his way to the Light Compound. Dyson’s message was troubling and required an immediate response. Wolves were in the area, they thought they would have at least a month before word got out and others came searching for Kenzi. It seems they had been a little too optimistic.
“Lachlan.” As usual the Ash was behind his desk buried behind stacks of paperwork. After the Elders Council was filled once more with qualified members of the community things would calm down for him but it was becoming clear that the lists for qualified and interested were mutually exclusive.
“Ah, Trick, what brings you by?” He wished it was under more pleasant circumstances, but if he was to do what needed to be done, he would need allies. Kenzi needed to be protected. While he knew that normally the protection of one Fae, especially an unaligned one like Kenzi, would not spark the Ashes interest but he knew that his friend held a soft spot for both Kenzi and Dyson.
“I bring news.”
“From your tone, I take it the tidings are not good.” They never were these days. It seemed like their lives had devolved to revolve around either a crisis or the aftermath of one.
Knowing nothing he could say would explain better than Dyson’s own words he simply handed the message he’d received to his friend. He watched as his face became more and more contorted with every word he read, his fury visible for all to see.