LUNAR PRIDE – CHAPTER 26: LIFE HURTS A LOT MORE THAN DEATH

Hello wonderful people and welcome again to another Blue Monday!

I’m sure the title of this post (and chapter) brings thoughts and (maybe) memories in your mind, but I hope that you’ve come to love Lunar Pride as much as I do, that you’ll be able to endure the sweet torment of this quite big chapter!

Are you ready? Let’s go then…

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Chapter 26: Life Hurts A Lot More Than Death

The Fae fires were still burning, long after Barbara’s abduction by Lauren and the beast that seemed to be the leader of the Pricolici. Screams were still echoing on the peaks of the Thumb, as the undead monsters were resisting to their ultimate death.

And who could blame them? Fear of death was the reason why they’d come back as monstrosities to this world. Oblivion that life hurts a lot more than death had led them to that damned decision.

Most of them though were nothing but ashes when Lucious woke up, surrounded by Andrew, Accalia and Simza. Most of them seemed like they never existed.

Yet that tactile pain right at the centre of his chest was proof enough; proof enough that his enemies had tricked him. Proof that Lauren was plotting a mutiny right under his nose for the last eight years. Proof that…

“Where is your sister?” Lucious whispered, still dizzy from the Pricolici’s attack. His stare was flying from Andrew to Accalia to Simza and back again. “Where is your sister? Where is my Larentia? WHERE IS MY DAUGHTER?” Lucious started raving, as none of the people around him dared to speak.

“Easy Father…” Accalia murmured and moved closer, sitting down on the stained snow, trying to soothe her father. “You’ve hit your head pretty hard. Let Simza heal you,” she stuttered.

“I don’t need healing!” Lucious hissed the moment he saw the rest of the pack coming closer to them; or at least what was left of his pack. “I need to know where Larentia is and I need to know it now!”

Lucious noticed his children exchanging frightened looks, remaining silent, when Simza walked forth and spoke to him.

“They’ve been ambushed, Lucious. Gweir attacked them right inside the campus. He knew all along. Thanks to Lauren, I suppose,” Simza hissed, her voice trembling a little. “We were trying to figure out why the potion didn’t work when I felt something was wrong. But I was too late. I am sorry,” she mattered.

“What… What do you mean?” Lucious whispered, standing up slowly to face the Ielele.

“Tia… She didn’t make it,” Andrew mattered, his eyes instantly filled with tears.

Andrew was not the only one though who went to pieces. For when Lucious realised what the boy he had brought up like he was his own son had said, he flared up! And at that moment he didn’t care whether the pack was staring at him or not; for they could also feel his pain flaring right through their veins.

“You bring her back now! I don’t care what your law says!” Lucious snarled, glaring at Simza.

Suddenly, a whirlwind swept through the peak of the mountain, the blizzard still making the Thumb more frightful than it already was. The blast of freezing air was as cold as death itself, as the Council and Mirela appeared right across the little group of Loups Garous.

“We can’t, Lucious. We won’t make the same mistake twice,” the Council said, multiple voices echoing as one at every peak and corner of the Thumb.

“What mistake? What the hell are you talking about? Why can’t you bring my sister back?” Andrew asked, moving closer to his father. “You know, we’re done with all your secrecy and mysteries. They’ve cost us enough already. We deserve the truth!”

Lucious could feel both of his children standing only inches away from him now; either from fear he might lose it or from anxiety he might collapse again, he couldn’t tell. All he could tell was that now his pulse was the one echoing loud and clear at every peak of the Mountain That Never Flooded.

“Are you sure about that?” the Council asked. “Lucious?”

Lucious gave them a faint nod in agreement. And that was all the elders of the Ielele needed.

“Very well then,” the Council’s voices reverberated over the air’s moaning, as the blizzard finally started to mitigate. It was like the Nature itself wanted to hear the elders’ words, as only a gentle breeze was now blowing away the thick snow.

“It began as every mistake can begin; with a doomed love story. We believe you’re all familiar with Louvel’s and Nacre’s one,” the Council said, not waiting for a particular answer.

The realisation though hit Andrew harder that he wanted to admit. For when he turned to face Lucious, the leader of the pack showed no sign of surprise to what the Council had just said.

“Back at the time of those two star-crossed lovers, things went as badly as they could go. For although they managed to live freely, at least for a little while, eventually the Silvers found them. They claimed they wanted to reunite their family, the old and the new one, and live in piece and harmony with the Loup Garou. And Louvel believed them; for he could see how crushed Nacre was, living away from her people, no matter how much she loved him. And he was also a romantic; just like you are,” the Council whispered, looking towards Andrew and Lucious.

What the f…, Accalia hissed down the mind bond.

Hush! Not now! Andrew said, fixing his gaze back upon the Ielele.

The whole pack was listening to them, mesmerised by the truth they thought they knew and the truth those ancient Faes were revealing to them now. And Lucious felt them; the questions and curiosity festering quickly, as they wondered why their Alpha had decided to hide something like that from them.

“But romantics rarely get out of a situation unharmed. The Silvers enslaved the Loups Garous, using the forces of the silver. They tormented them. They brutalised them. The Silvers left only Nacre and her children unharmed. Nacre because she was a Silver and her kids because they were immune to the powers of the element.”

With every word the Council said, the confusion of the pack was escalating. And for the first time that night, Lucious asked himself whether he’d done right keeping all those secrets from them all those years. Not only from the pack, but mostly his children. His little Accalia, the eternal child. His Larentia, the logic itself personified. And his Andrew. His future. The future of the pack, the future of their heritage.

“I don’t understand how something that happened centuries ago has anything to do with you not wanting to bring back my sister,” Accalia hissed.

“We don’t want to bring your sister back from the dead, young Loup Garou, not because of the cruelty of our hearts, but because we’re the reason why the undead monsters first stepped their feet upon this earth!” the otherworldly voices of the Council echoed. And their tone was so cold it almost burned the pack’s souls. Lucious’s soul. And above all, Andrew’s.

“Meaning?” Andrew growled, his tone equally ice cold.

“Because of the everlasting torments of the Silver family, many of Louvel’s pack members died. A long and suffering death they had,” the Council whispered. “The Silver patriarch of that time asked us to bring those Loups Garous back to life. And we were fools back then. For we believed the Silvers had learnt their lesson and they indeed wanted to live peacefully with the new members of their family.”

“But they didn’t…” Andrew whispered, afraid to raise his voice higher than necessary.

And for a moment, the darkness of the night seemed even darker as the Council revealed the final and most gruesome details of their story.

“No. They didn’t,” the Council hissed, their ancient, yet young at the same time, voices sending shivers down the pack’s spines. “But they’re not to blame for our actions. Because, indeed, we brought those poor creatures back to life, but at a great cost. A terrible cost. For the creatures before us were nothing like the proud, wolf-shaped gods we used to know. They were monstrosities. And we were tricked. Because, by bringing them back to life, leaving the later called Pricolici exist in the expense of other living creatures was, and still is, against the great balance of Mother Nature.”

“Then why didn’t you kill them again? You could’ve saved yourselves from all that self pitiness,” Accalia hooted, ignoring Lucious’s warning glare.

“Because, young Loup Garou, magic always comes with a price. You of all people should know that,” the Council hissed, glancing at Accalia for just a split second. And then they locked their eyes upon Andrew; Lucious’s grandest secret, his most treasured weapon.

“No!” Lucious growled. “Not yet. Let me talk to them,” he murmured, waging the Council’s reaction.

The elders of the Romani Faes remained silent for a while. Only the crackling of the fire upon the stained, scarlet snow was echoing. That, and the erratic heartbeats of the creatures all the way up the slope. And although Lucious was expecting Accalia to be the one to break the silence once again, it was Mirela the one who finally spoke.

“You should probably move, Lucious. Simza contacted me earlier and I’ve taken care of every mind, body and soul in and out the campus,” Mirela said, her voice even and neutral. “Nobody’s going to find out what happened there.”

“Except maybe the Silvers,” Andrew hissed.

“Maybe… Which is why you need to move. Quickly!” Mirela said as if she hadn’t been interrupted in the first place.

“And go where exactly?” Accalia asked, ignoring completely the Ielele, staring only at her father. “Those monsters will find us anywhere. And Mother knows the way we act. They way you act, Dad…”

“Your mother will expect us to stay close. We’ve been here for a couple of months now and she’ll probably think I’m not willing to take any more chances. Especially with Larentia gone,” Lucious said. He was mostly talking to himself, rather than his kids, his pack or the Faes.

“No way!” Andrew said. His eyes started from their sockets as he realised what Lucious was talking about. “What about Mother?”

“I’ll take care of it. The Council will help me,” Lucious said. The elders nodded in agreement, reassuring Andrew of what Lucious was trying to communicate him in silence.

“Are you sure about that?” Andrew insisted, recalling the threats he had received earlier that night. Move and she dies, Lauren had said. And Andrew knew she didn’t only mean that moment. She meant every future move, every attempt of bringing Barbara back. But he couldn’t leave her be. She was his mother. The person who had made certain he’d stay alive, safe. And he’d do the same.

Lucious made a faint gesture.

Everything’s gonna be all right. I’ll bring your mother back, son, he whispered down the mind bond, only for Andrew to hear.

“What is it?” Accalia asked, still unaware of what the two males were talking about.

“Ready for some steep ascent, sis?” Andrew asked. “We’re going to Mount Logan. And this time, you’re coming, too!” he hissed, glaring at the two Ielele, the ones who he’d first met on the Devil.

They will either save us or doom us to failure, once and for all, Lucious thought.

His dark brown eyes glowed emerald instantly. The black-haired, muscular man started fainting. The proud, black, great wolf reappeared, ordering the pack to do the same. Black, grey, brown and white wolves transfigured all around him, Andrew’s black fur darker than darkness itself, Accalia’s whiter than purity.

I let you down today! We lost many members of our family today. And this loss won’t be easy to overcome, I know. But I promised you a better life, a safer future, and that’s what I’m gonna give you. I have a task to fulfil. A duty to honour. Which is why, as of tonight, Andrew is the new Alpha of the pack! 

Nobody looked as stunned as Andrew. And nobody as triumphant as Simza.

© Victoria Moschou. All Rights Reserved 2016-2018.

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I hope you guys enjoyed this post and I look forward to reading your thoughts, feelings, comments and feedback in the comment section down below!

I wish you all a very productive week!

Till next time… Toodles!

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