The cold fall wind rushed through my pure white fur as I weaved in and out of the thick trees in the dark forest. The night had long turned dark hours ago. Winter would soon be taking over the fall.

This was my third night volunteering to patrol the border with the other guys. Rogues attacked our territory this year and we were taking every precaution to protect the Shadowlands. My father was the last Alpha male in line to have been born. My family had led this pack and territory for centuries. There always was a male Alpha born to lead except for my generation. I was an only child so my mate would become Alpha of our pack.

Five months ago our territory and the neighboring one were attacked by rogues. They had been gathering for years. They had enough wolves to conquer at least half the territories. There were seven wolf territories. Each one had their own pack and Alpha family. My father and Alpha Eric, our neighboring pack, were two of the many wolves killed that night. The rogues were chased out beyond the border. But they threatened to return.

Uncle Bruce, my father's Beta, took over. I was not old enough to run the pack yet and I hadn't found my mate. When a wolf shifter turns eighteen they are able to find their mate. Your mate is supposed to be the other half of your soul. You feel a pull in your heart the moment your eyes meet. This was the one person fate destined you to be with for the rest of your life. When you find them, you feel complete.

The reason I knew about the feelings was I found my mate five months ago. My eighteenth birthday passed two days after my father was murdered. We held the funeral five days after I turned. That's where I saw him.

I knew him for most of my life. He was the Alpha of the Hollows pack, the neighboring pack that also got attacked. His father was the other Alpha that had been murdered. He was twenty five. He had taken over as Alpha when he turned eighteen. He turned eighteen years ago. He had already known we were mates but didn't tell me. He was refusing to claim me.

He already had his own pack and territory. I hoped that was the reason he refused to claim me. It was unprecedented for an Alpha to have two territories. But we hadn't spoken about any of this.

I hadn't even told my family or friends that I found my mate. I avoided all contact with him for the past five months. If he wasn't going to claim me or tell anyone then neither was I.

It killed me inside not to see or talk to him. I was denying myself a mate but I was scared. He made it seem like he didn't want me as his mate. As much as I didn't want to, I gave him the space he clearly desired.

My father never would have let me run on patrol. But ever since my father's death, my uncle had been letting me do whatever I wanted. Tonight I wanted to run with my fellow wolves. Bruce sent five of us to search the borders where we saw rogues last week.

As a female shifter, my wolf form was smaller than males. That just meant I was faster than the guys. It also meant I had to train harder to become a strong fighter. The guys hated training with me. They thought it was a waste of time to fight with me.

We had only been outside for an hour. I managed to outrun them within ten minutes. None of them could keep up with my pace.

The wind switched directions quickly. A faint scent drifted past my nose. I came to a halt from my run to search where the smell was coming from.

The wind blew again and the scent became stronger. It was a male wolf. He was close to my location. Bruce hadn't mentioned any visitors or new pack members. It could be an intruder. My hackles rose and my lip pulled back. A low growl rumbled in my throat.

A large black wolf stepped out from behind a group of trees. My body instantly tensed. I crouched into an attack position.

'Logan where are you?'