Chapter 38: Is She Here?
“You can untie her, Doc, she can eat, but she stays confined in here until we decide what should be
done with her. I still want a name and pack. I need to know what kind of threat she is, or they pose. I’ll
be back soon. I need to contact Alpha. Santo. and get direction concerning our intruder. He’ll want to
My heart literally stops beating in my chest, and I have to stop myself from gasping out loud at the
words that come out of his mouth. My insides self-combust, and my blood freezes in my veins, as my
mind comes to a complete standstill on those two little terrifying words.
Alpha Santo! Juan! There is no other Santo pack in these parts, and his resemblance isn’t coincidental.
Why Colton kept coming to mind is now glaringly obvious. This is Juan’s facility, which can only mean
one thing. Deacon is a Santo, it explains the assholes bad attitude and shitty behavior, and possibly,
Sierra is not an invading dream because of Colton’s telling me about her before I left him. She’s been
calling me somehow, from these four walls, and led me right to her. There’s no other explanation for
how this all ties up like this. The fates wouldn’t just let this casually happen.
I don’t understand how, or even why, or that she managed to do it from inside an isolation tank, but
there’s no other logic for this kind of crazy coincidence. This is a Santo building, a facility, so many
miles, and days away from the mountain, but close enough for Juan to have his reach. Doubt he has
many facilities in our lands, and I didn’t just come upon this by chance. I start wondering how much of
this was orchestrated by the fates, and I don’t mean from the second I turned East. I mean all of it, and
how I was led here from the day of my turning.
I’m so screwed though. Once Juan knows I’m here, it’s going to be game over. He might actually send
me to the same fate as Sierra, wherever she is, and leave me to rot in here along with her for the next
ten years. It’ll be the answer to the dilemma of my pairing with his son. Keep me locked up, and keep
Colton safe, it’s not like anyone’ll miss me if I too disappear for a decade.
The doctor moves over me as soon as Deacon leaves us alone, his face apologetic, with a softness to
his grey eyes that I didn’t notice before. He has a kindness, in the wrinkles and lines around his eyes
and mouth, that suggest he genuinely smiles a lot in his life. With a worried glance at my face, and a
smile that doesn’t quite reach his eyes, he whispers in a shaky voice, revealing his own fears.
“Please, don’t react when I remove these, I don’t want to have to sedate you again, and I don’t know if
I’ve a strength to match you, even in human form. I swear, I mean you no harm. Let’s keep this civil.
You play nice, we play nice. It doesn’t have to be hostile.” He doesn’t trust me, and even though in
here, I have no gifts, he’s wary of me. He’s human for sure, and he knows what we are capable of,
which means he’s probably witnessed it to be this kind of afraid. I find it weird they even have a mortal
here, but I guess the wolf world has a shortage of crazy doctors to keep Juan’s mate hidden with.
Packs are family, and it’s rare to find sub packs who keep secrets from the rest, especially among one
as big as the Santos. I guess humans are easier to keep quiet.
I nod and relax my body in a bid to show him I’ll behave, and he seems to pick up on it, his smile
strengthening, and his face relaxes. I can almost taste the tension seeping out as he leans in to undo
the first buckle.
He makes fast and light work of releasing me from the bed and jumps back cautiously when he unties
the last ankle strap, eyeing me from a distance as I slowly sit up and regain my bearings. It takes a
minute, and my head swims as I level up, aware I have only this gown on to cover my modesty, and it
falls forward off my shoulders as I move, telling me it’s not even tied at the back. They must have
thrown it on before restraining me, and I reach back to pull it together again.
“Just let me go. I’m not interested in this place or your work. I have my own plans and route. I’ll happily
get back to that.” I point out, trying to sound sincere, but the old man’s eyes narrow and he frowns at
me, shaking his head apologetically.
“Oh, my dear, I’m afraid I’m not the one who makes those kinds of decisions, or I would show to the
door with a wave and a sandwich. The problem is, we can’t let you go without being sure all of that is
true. No one’s come up here in ten years without invitation, and yet here you are, not just a regular silly
trekker or lost hiker…. but a wolf. A solitary femme, which is quite unusual in itself given pack hierarchy
and the female role in your world, but a rare white form at that. Remarkable. I’m afraid it’s all a little too
suspicious given the circumstances.” His voice is hushed, as I guess he doesn’t want Deacon, or
whoever watches the camera, to hear and the real serious concern etched in his eyes shines out. He
has a trusting quality about him that’s tingling my sixth sense and telling me he’s not one of the bad
“What circumstances would that be?” I match his expression, a little churning of suspicion of my own as
I take in his manner and the way he seems to be deflating a little, his posture sagging as he turns
towards the wall. He stops at the food trolley and pushes it towards me with a fake smile.
“We’ve been testing such unusual DNA for years, and a rare specimen falls right in my lap. It’s almost
like the fates ordained it, or maybe a little spy came to gather intel for a rival pack? My work up until
now has been a secret, and protected, but you found us…. An elusive rare white.” He rises his brows,
suspiciously, and I fiercely glare at him as his tiny accusation filters through and offends me on a
“I’m no spy, and I have no idea what you’re talking about. I’m white, because much like my mother, I
lack a pigment… it’s not rare because it’s special, it’s a flaw! Diluted bloodline, or some nonsense, and
not actually desirable at all. In my world, I’m an outcast because I’m inferior, so screw your theory. No
one cares about that kind of intel, least of all me.” It’s an angry outburst with a basis in old wounds and
heartache and I croak with a raw harsh tone in my voice, biting back a surprising tear as it comes out.
My own inferiority issues peeking and taking the form of rage.
The doctor begins to laugh, like I said something ridiculous, his wide eyes, and startled, his expression
completely unnerves me and throws me off.
“A flaw? By whose standard, dear child? Hybrid blood is spectacular, and a masterpiece of engineering
science, my dear. I don’t know who’s been keeping you in the dark all these years with such nonsense,
but white… it’s not a flaw. In a breed where you own physical perfection and can selfheal the worst of
wounds and illness. You think your DNA would allow such atrocity, by defect? No, of course it wouldn’t,
it couldn’t. Your own gifts work out the kinks in your make up, from the second you’re born. It’s the
bonding perfection between two species and happens only when the biochemistry of a particular set of
genes lines up in a magical way. Two species, two blood types, merging beautifully in one captivating
dance that produces a new third, equally magnificent species. You, my dear… are what I have been
dying to test for the last decade!! It’s a near impossible combination to make stick without awful
deformities, or even loss, and your kind are few and far between. Whoever first engineered your
astounding DNA must have been incredibly talented. Tell me, are you a first generation, or are you a
natural born?” That grand speech, and whooshing of over excitable words, floors me. I try and absorb
half of what that word junkie threw at me, and I’m still sitting blinking at him as my brain catches up the
translation from freak talk to plain English.
“You’re lying. I don’t know what you’re talking about, or half of what you said, but I know hybrids aren’t
a thing.” Terror overtakes me as his words filter in, and my mind refuses to digest what he’s saying,
because it’s simply wrong. The wolves pride their bloodlines and purity, it’s a massive part of our being
Mixed breeds don’t exist, because if they did, the pure bloods would destroy them. They don’t want
dilution and mongrels among our blood. They’re bad enough when weak DNA like my families infects a
pack, and those people become calm land workers with no urge to fight and dominate. It’s why the
Whyte pack never had any kind of claim to the mountain as a ruling pack and the Santos own it. Our
kind thrives on dominance, we need alphas and purity to survive.
The doctor clutches a flat hand to his chest, aghast. Eyes wide, an expression that translates offence.
“Lie. I never lie when it comes to science, my dear. I’m a bio chemist of the highest order with a special
interest in your kind. Dedicated my life to it and it’s all I research. Hybrids are my forte!! I would so love
to get your samples under my microscope and see if the stories are true, and show you for yourself, the
absolute wonder of your own genetics. Warring species in one body, and yet they seem to have
completely bloomed! I mean look at you…. utter perfection.”
My blood runs cold, my eyes raking him and trying to make sense of what he’s saying, so many
questions forming and gathering on my tongue. My head scrambling with the uncertainty that he might
actually be telling the truth. But that would make my mother…. I can’t even.
Deacon reappears unexpectedly, interrupting with the beep of the door before he enters, and throws us
both a strange look that suggests he doesn’t like whatever feeling we just gave him. The atmosphere is
tense, and the doctor seems to lose his enthusiastic energy and slinks back out of the way, probably
afraid to admit he told me way too much. I can tell, that despite co-habiting in this place, there’s no real
bond between them and the doctor is as wary of my prison guard as I am.
“Alpha. Juan. will be here in two days…. This one…. Her name is Alora, and interestingly, from our own
mountain, so take from that what you will. She isn’t going anywhere.” Deacon turns to me, a look of
disgust rippling across his face as he scowls at me, and everything inside of me seems to disperse in a
wave of numb. The fear claws through me that Juan knew exactly who I was with just one call and is
coming here personally to decide my fate. That’s not a good sign.
“The mountain….” The doctor whispers is so lightly under his breath I doubt Deacon hears him, but I
do, and catch that slight hint of recognition that flitters across his brow before he pushes it away and
locks his facial expression on blank.
Damn me for being a white wolf! That had to be the defining detail that gave it away. Maybe also the
fact he knows I’m missing now, and one lone femme, this close to home, was probably a no brainer.
I raise my brows at Deacon with false bravado as if to say, ‘so what?’ His eyes narrow at mine and the
scowl gets more prominent.
“So…. You’re a runaway from our own pack? Juan said he’s been looking for you, traitor. How
coincidental you end up here…. clearly looking for something you shouldn’t be! You’re going down to
isolation until he gets here, and then you can be someone else’s problem. Hopefully his, and I’m sure
he’ll find the perfect punishment for a flawed failure who betrayed her own kind.” I don’ doubt Juan has
conducted a whole new story about why I’m public enemy number one and arguing it is going to be
futile. Deacon is a believer, a loyal to Juan’s sub pack, and it’s boringly obvious. He was put here,
probably because he is one of the Juan brainwashed who do exactly as they are told, and questions
Deacon grabs me by the upper arm ruthlessly, and hauls me off the bed forcefully, my body still a dead
weight and I almost fall on the floor with the sudden demand to use my limbs properly. Grabbing out to
catch myself and instantly overwhelmed with dizziness at being bolted upright.
“Careful, careful…. She’s a very special specimen and still a young lady. Kindness does not cost extra,
Mr. Deacon. Compassion. A little human dignity. If we have her for two days yet, then I need to harvest
samples for my studies and could use the time to learn more about her very unique blood! I can’t let
this opportunity go to waste, and I certainly can’t stand and watch you damage her.” The doctor is torn
between real human concern for a person, and that of a scientist with his eye on a prized lab rat. I can’t
even be mad about it, but it does open a window of opportunity.
“Doc, she’s our prisoner, not a study volunteer. She’s a betrayer of my blood and I’ll handle her as
such. The only place this chick is going, is down beside that mindless corpse they keep in bay two, and
out of bounds for you and your quack colleagues in the lab. If we’re lucky, she’ll stay as quiet as her
new roommate and be gone before she messes up anymore of my week.” Deacon is an asshole for
sure. He pulls me with him, not waiting for my legs to catch up and despite my inner desire to not touch
this idiot, I have to grab onto him or be dragged along behind him.
“Sierra is not mindless. She’s sedated and detained by you thugs and your lack of vision… she’s a
work of art, a person with feelings, and thoughts, and if Juan would only allow me to waken her and….”
“Enough!!! Shut your mouth!! That’s a dead name…. just like you will be if you talk about her again.”
Deacon barks at him hatefully, the tone scathing, and pins him with a forceful glare.
The Doctor recoils, scolded, and red faced but I can feel his simmering anger with the mention of
Sierra. The spark in him of real rage before he was shut down, and paces off to bubble under the
surface, grabbing a nearby rag, and twisting it between his hands as we pass him. I can tell he’s trying
so hard to hold his tongue.
I’m speechless though, my mind racing at the confirmation she’s here and my mouth runs dry. I don’t
fight Deacon as he bodily hauls me out the door at speed, no consideration that his grip is leaving
marks on my skin, or that I’m tripping over every step as I try to regain control of my walking ability. His
fingers biting into my arm as my legs, like jelly under me, try to keep up with his long fast stride. I end
up clinging to the side of him like a needy child, aware my gown is sliding off, and I catch sight of the
doctor one last time as he follows us out into the corridor and I strain back to see.
He looks sad, defeated, and as he watches me get dragged away, I lock my eyes on him one last time
as I clutch together a plan of sorts in my head that might give me a tiny hope of getting out of this. I
throw him a desperate backwards second glance, an attempt to communicate.
“I volunteer…. take your tests. I want to know why I’m white, and I’m not going to be doing anything
else for two days.” I lie impulsively, loud enough for my voice to echo this hall. The doctor is a soft
touch and he knows something about Sierra too. Maybe I can convince him to let me go, or to see her
to figure out why she brought me here. It’s clutching at straws and my brain is scurrying to try and
figure how this will help, but it’s all I have in the moment. Deacon falters, stopping us mid step with an
exaggerated exhale of annoyance. He turns us to the doctor fully.
The doctor’s face lights up with a glow that tells me he might be my key to getting out of here, before
Juan shows up in two days, or at the least he may be a valuable ally if I can keep him latched onto my
unique so called ‘hybrid blood’. Might be able to manipulate him into revealing more or getting lax with
keeping me locked up. Deacon, I can tell is a lost cause, but the doctor, he just might be the weak link.
I don’t believe anything he said about being a hybrid though. I think he’s a crackpot scientist who has
sampled too many of his own test tubes from being in underground isolation, but if it gets me an angle
to lever a possible way out, then I’m going to play on it. I’ll play along and nod my head and let him
stick me with as many needles and swabs as it takes to win him around.
“See, see, she has no objections and it’s only some blood and smears and such. I will barely touch her,
and it won’t interfere with her time here at all. Juan will never know.” The doctor’s enthusiasm and
surge of newfound joy is energizing and solidifies my plan. Deacon scowls at him for the longest,
tensest moment, as I hold my breath and pray.
“She stays in bay one, you don’t take her anywhere else, and you are to be done before Juan gets
anywhere near here. Not a word to him about it, at all!” Deacon lays down the law, relenting, probably
for a quiet life, and it’s not like he’ll have to do anything.
The doctor nods enthusiastically, like an excitable puppy, and I remain calm and neutral, shielding the
sea of nerves rippling up inside of me. My heart is pounding, my insides trembling, but on the outside,
I’m cool and calm. I have a chance of breaking out and it’s keeping my wits about me.
I allow Deacon to turn me manually and haul me off through the door ahead of us to a second corridor,
pushing through the swing door with haste. I blink at the harsh change to lighting, opening my eyes
onto a white sterile passageway, with glossy surfaces, that shine bright, blinding with the force of the
daylight LED lights. It creates an optical illusion of a vast white wall less space that blinds your corneas
half to death with the intensity of the snow-white environment.
It’s like being in my dream, creepily so. The one in which I saw Sierra, and I’m dazed a little by the
surrealness of it. My heart rate escalates, my eyes raking around us as it starts to piece together and
bring back memories and details of that light space where I met her. Being pulled along mindlessly as
my thoughts drift repeatedly to her standing ahead of me, with no real sense of boundaries around us.
It’s too striking a resemblance to ignore.
The fates brought me here for a reason; they pushed me to run from Colton, and they hauled me east
so I can’t ignore it. Meadow always said the fates were never wrong, and all of this is way too
coincidental to be an accident, or to keep me as a non-believer. I’m here for a reason, and the dreams
I’ve been having about her, it all suddenly makes so much sense.
She meant it… she meant us…her…and me… And Colton. He’s wavering without his mom.
We’re both here, and I seem to be the only one that can do anything about getting us