Missing Link - 5 | iv

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Marx felt slightly foolish sitting in the tent, legs folded underneath him. He wanted to ask what this all should achieve but each time he spoke out of turn the Shaman chastised him. Now he sat there in silence, eyes closed, talking to himself. The room was now a haze of incense that tickles his nose, and he was sitting closer to the suspended fire than he would have liked.

"You are the man, the alpha, and the wolf," the Shaman said. "Open your eyes."

Marx did and before he could ask a question he saw figures in the cloud of incense. One was a man and bounding over to him was a wolf. He accepted the wolf and the two became one. Another figure formed. This third figure was a werewolf. Instead of accepting it as the man had the wolf, they remained divided.

"Roan said I feared the wolf."

"It is the alpha that you fear. You trust the power and the heart of the wolf, but you do not trust the power and the heart of the werewolf. You fear power as you think it corrupts. Power is pure; it is the one who wields it who makes it good or bad. The same goes for magic. Both are pure energy that takes on the aura of the one who is master of it."

Around the man and the werewolf, other figures started to appear. They stood watching the man and the alpha as if they were waiting for something to happen. The sound of drums came to him, the beat matching the intensity of the scene that played out in front of him. He heard the chants, a battle cry he did not know, but his spirit felt it. The wolf in him drawn by it.

"You are stronger than you can ever imagine. A real alpha of spirit and blood. Inside of your acceptance of the alpha lies the power to unite all who are wolf."

"I-I don't understand..."

His voice trailed off as the man before him walked towards the werewolf. It bowed falling to its knee, a fisted hand on the ground. The man, who was the figure of himself, placed his hand on the top of the werewolf's head. On contact, the werewolf merged with the man who changed. Now a werewolf the man threw his head back and howled. All around him the crowd that had gather fell to their knee, a fisted hand on the ground. As one line bowed, the next followed. The rows seemed to go on without end.

Marx clenched his hands on his knees as the man, now a werewolf, turned to face him. It was as if it could see him through the haze of incense. Marx knew the scene before him wasn't real, but he tensed as the figure came closer growing larger as it did. A slow walk became a jog before the misty figure raced towards him its jaws open. The mist form of the werewolf entered his body through his gaping mouth causing him to gasp and wheeze. He grabbed at the front of his shirt fighting to breathe.

***

Shea was standing with Ichiro and the others around the fire. Before them, the Natives were performing the Hakarum Ne. A traditional war cry passed down through the ages. The aura of their wolves encased the Natives in an orange glow. They looked as if they were preparing for war. As the tempo of the drums built Shea's breathing changed.

"Shea?"

Ichiro looked up to see that Shea was not the only one in the mysterious trance. All around them, the werewolves stood staring at the performers their eyes all wolf. He was not the only one who noticed. Zigor and the vampires looked around them unsure of what was happening and for the Natives nothing seemed to be off. When the thunderous roar broke through the night, it completed what the ceremonial song had started. All around them, the werewolves changed, bursting from their garments as if being freed for the first time. Every werewolf, every native, down to the children threw their heads back and the night erupted into howls.

The entire scene only lasted for a moment. When the roar stopped so did the howls. One by one, the werewolves and Natives fell to the ground. As Shea fainted, her body became human again.

Ichiro looked over at Zigor, Vescovi, Philippe, and Anabella—the only ones standing. "What the hell was that?"

***

The Shaman was leaning over Marx as he laid there on the ground. Marx was still fighting to breathe but taking air into his lungs was becoming easier.

"Accept the alpha," he heard the Shaman say from a distance though the man was inches from him, "and you will become the alpha of us all."


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Author Note:

So Salvay is looking for another key to open the portal and Marx must find the key to unlocking his full power. The race is on. Who will reach their goal first and what will it mean if Marx does not find his key in time.

So much more left to come in this epic tale of the Shadow Wolf.

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