Book cover of “An Untamed Werewolf“ by Preshh

An Untamed Werewolf

  • Genre: Romance
  • Age: 18+
  • Status: Completed
  • Language: English
  • Author: Preshh
Saelyna and her twin brother, Cyran, are among the last, few elves in Halden that are still healing from the wounds of the rebellion. They both work in the King's Glade, growing the magical kingpeas for the His Grace's use. One night, a werewolf attacks Cyran while hunting, injuring him severely. He escapes and makes it home, but is dying from ... 

Chapter 1. Saelyna

SAELYNA

“Elf.”

The hissed words jolt me out of my reverie, and I look up at the contemptuous face of the line man. He’s tall, heavily bearded, and his nose is scrunched up as he examines me. No surprises there. I’m used to it.

I step forward and raise my arms as usual. He starts from my neck, then down my back, down my sides, across my legs. I recall the first time I was to put up with that. The lineman on duty that day got a bit excited, and I reacted quickly. And painfully too. My knuckles hurt for days, but I don’t compare it with the broken nose he had to deal with.

I feel that queasiness return, as the man doubles back, and his arms rove up my side again. I try to be still, and hope he doesn’t notice my beating heart or my droopy eyelids.

He doesn’t. He steps back with a grunt. “Go on, elf.”

For some stupid reason, I blurted, “It’s Saelyna.”

He turns sharply at that. “What did you say, elf?” he snarls, eyes glinting.

Right. He’s a moose-genn. I definitely should have kept shut.

“A slip, that’s all. I apologize,” I say quickly and take steps backward.

He grinds his jaws and gets back to searching for the workers.

My heart is literally pounding in my chest as I make my way to the food stand, the small pouch rubbing against my hip. Aranon and the Six must be alive, then. I mutter a silent prayer of thanks when I get to the stands.

Camille looks up as I get close, and her green eyes brighten. Occasionally, I wonder if she’s really human; that kind of beauty is usually an elf’s attribute. I’ve known her since our third moon click though, and she’s just the most graceful person I know.

“Hey,” she says, “What’s up?”

“The usual, Cam. The usual.”

And I just stole a couple of king peas, so okay, that’s not usual.

She grins at me. “We talked. Today. Cyran and I,” she says.

“Wow. What about? He mentioned a date yet?”

She chuckles, a soft, enchanting sound that just eases me. “No, Gazelles, no. We just…you know, got to another level.” She lowers her voice to a whisper. “I think he was flirting.”

I try to envision Cyran flirting. The image doesn’t stick. “Well, keep up at this rate, and you might invite me to your wedding…in a decade.”

Camille opens her mouth in mock shock and punches me in the arm.

“I’m just saying, Cam, you’ve been crushing on him for a year now. Or more. I mean, you have to tell him.”

“No. No, the thought terrifies me. What if he’s not interested?”

I clear my throat.

Cyran approaches us. He looks different when he’s without the apron and his hair is tied back into a ponytail. I’m still trying to align the image with the scrawny nine-year old who used to hide behind his sister. I can’t.

He grins at us. “Hey,” he says, “What are you two talking about?”

I reply to Camille, “Oh nothing much, just you.”

He raises his brow and stares at Camille. Her neck and cheeks are beet red, so she busies herself with taking down the stands.

“Huh,” he says, “Ok…um…I’m about to hit the road. I’m tired.”

“Yeah, me too,” I tell him, “Camille, are you coming?”

She doesn’t turn when she replies. “Uh, no. I got a…a thing with Garrick, so um…later?”

“Sure,” Cyran says, “Take care!”

Usually, we wait up for the rest of the peers, but I just want to get home early. I can’t stand one more minute in this place, with stolen stuff in my side pocket.

We both head down the path that leads away from The King’s Glade, and into the forest. I love it here. The tall trees that barely sway in the spring wind, the quiet chirps and whistles of birds and squirads, the sweet, fresh smell of nature.

Cyran and I used to come here when we were little. Just the edge of the woods, though. The older kids poisoned our minds with tales of spindars and giant lizards, the mad croc-genns and shadow walkers. Granted, they were not wrong. But those creatures live on the other side of Quindar, in the forsaken Lefties. I just wish I had known that years earlier, before the times Cyran and I would bolt from the place at the slightest uncanny sound.

I look at him now. He walks with an easy stride, whistling softly and staring ahead. He has the god sight, (something we do our best to keep to ourselves), so I know he’s scanning the path yards ahead of us, inspecting the trees, the animals, and the guards. He’s so gifted, but he doesn’t realize it. Or doesn’t care. He stopped doing so since the Rebellion.

I think he’s mad at me. He doesn’t need to speak for me to know. I can feel it. But it’s been so for a very long while now, so I’ve gotten used to it. Kind of.

We reach the edge of the forest without ado, and the village stretches out ahead of us. Sometimes, I forget what it is, who are we are. In those moments, I make hurried decisions and uncalculated moves. Like snapping at a king’s guard. Getting drunk and neglecting my duties. Or sneaking out magic plants.

***

I drop on the couch once we’re inside the cottage. It groans and sinks, as it always does, but it’s never really bothered us. Not if we had the money for a new one.

A low growl comes from my right, and I’m staring into our panther’s purple eyes.

“Sweet Ima,” I say and rub her neck.

The great cat purrs and rubs against me, threatening what’s left of the cushion’s springs. I chuckle and relax in her thick fur.

I feel his eyes on me before I even see him. “What?” I ask.

He shrugs off his coat and loosens his hair before settling into the only other furniture in the living room, the armchair.

“What’s going on?” he asks quietly.

“What?” I repeat.

“You’re great at lying, I’ll give you that, but I’m better at it. And I’ve caught you every single time you did…”

“Few times,” I interrupt.

“What’re you hiding?” His face is blank, a rare expression, and definitely my least favorite.

I sigh. “I took some.”

He raises a brow. “Somewhat?”

I shouldn’t say anything. At all. But I can’t bear lying to him, not after what I did to the farm.

I sit up and Ima settles in a corner, opposite Cyran. She doesn’t really like him. Not since the day he blasted her halfway across the yard.

“Some opine. What do you think, twat?”

His blue eyes widen. “You stole peas?”

“Yell out loud for all of Quindar to hear,” I snap.

He purses his lips but lowers his voice as he goes on. “What are you, stupid? Aranon, but that’s the most… I don’t know, foolish and suicidal thing rolled into one!”

“Yeah, well, Aranon and the Six abandoned us. I’ve got to make ends meet.” I stand up and head for the kitchen.

Cyran follows. “Sae, we need to get rid of those.” He sounds genuinely scared, and I instantly regret telling him. And stealing the peas.

“We’re going to be fine. As long as you keep shut, and let me handle my business.”

I fill my cup with water from the tap and gulp it down in one go. I miss the days when that could be done while sitting on the couch, and not moving a muscle.

“Look, Sae, we don’t need that. Look, the hunt is three days. If I win, and I will, we’ll get enough to bring back the farm and return to our old lives.” He notices the expression on my face and adds, “Or what was left of it.”

I toss my cup into the sink. “I require a drink,” I mutter and head out of the house before Cyran can say anything.

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