Twenty Three

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Life and death.

The two things that made up the very fabric of life. Natures law and the survival of the natural order were what kept the world balanced.

When a rip occurred, the balance tipped viciously. And vicious it was.

And the pain.

Unbearable.

A hole in the soul, imprinted forever. The breaking of a bond was enough to drive any wolf to the edge of their sanity and an Alpha was trained from birth to withstand the breaks they would feel from their pack members. But the breaking of a family bond, especially in a vicious manner, broke the body physically as well as mentally.

The severe weight of the broken bonds upon her mind were now further burdened by the madness of the beast within her, the Lycan. The madness that circled her was a strange entity and allowed her mind to circle continuously.

Adelaide stared up at the cave ceiling above her as she laid on her back. Her hands rested on her stomach and her legs laid flat against her bed mat on the floor. She breathed evenly, in a strange state of calmness, as she stared into nothing.

Her hearing picked up the sound of Adam's approaching footfalls as he neared her den. He had come and gone repeatedly in the time that had followed her father's death and had continued to be cautious. At any other time, she would have not permitted him to enter her private space, but she didn't have the energy or the want to anymore.

He looked upon her and she could feel his every emotion.

Sympathy, Longing, Curiosity.

She listened to his movements as he sank to the floor next to her, sitting with his knees against his chest and his thumbs twiddling together. They sat silently as she continued to exist in the plane they shared along with the separate world of her mind. His heartbeat was calm and beat a steady rhythm in his chest as his natural power filled the space.

Its resonance had grown. The death of her father had left a wide opening in the hierarchy of their kind. He was the only wolf powerful enough to fill it and his beast had risen to the power available. He was now stronger than before and only slightly weaker than her.

In the quiet moment they shared within each other's company, power did not matter. Only their grief.

"How do you bear it?" He asked, breaking the silence.

The roughness of his voice echoed across the walls and the hair on her arms stood up at the powerful undertone of his voice. The boy had become a powerful hot-blooded male within such a small time, she felt sorry for him, for the life he now had to lead. He was grieving as she was. For a father who paid him no mind and for a man who did, a confusing double-edged sword.

"I do not." She told him simply.

She would no longer provide him with false truths, he now needed to know it all.

She waited a few moments, letting her words sink into him, before she carried on. She wanted to make sure that he understood, so that he himself would be able to carry a similar burden himself.

"Every day is a mental battle against the pain and beast. I had managed to overcome it with new bonds to the pack but the last of my family bonds have been broken. Each of them murdered and torn from my soul."

The water had begun to build up on her eyes as she took a shuddering breath. He was now the only male to see a weakness within her, the only one that would ever see her so. He took a deep breath with her as his eyes looked off to the distance.

"The Lycan?" He asked.

"The highest form of our evolution. I am to be the last of them. As the Conduit, emotion is already difficult to control. My Lycan form is no separate entity, we are the same. It is a constant dance of light and dark."

It had been such a long time since a Lycan had been seen to their kind that it was easy enough for them to become a myth. Such power and strength were enviable.

And it would all die with her.

Her family line was the only one of their kind to carry the Lycan gene and because of this the Conduit was always chosen from her ancestral line. The most powerful was always the best choice for the vessel of the Goddess. They had power in their blood and Lycans dormant under their skin.

It was because of the power they held that Michael sought to eradicate them, and he had succeeded. She would bear no children and she would take no mate. Her only end was death, she knew that.

She was the last of the true-born Moon Wolves. Werewolf kind had destroyed the only thing that could protect them and would not last long once she was gone.

"I felt it." He told her.

She turned her head to look at him, finally bringing herself back to the real world as she studied him. She saw the deep frown set across his face as his thumb rubbed across his lip as he opened up to her.

"The agony." They spoke together.

He met her eyes and they looked at each other with no contest. Truly seeing each other.

"I have always had a gift for seeing and manipulating the bonds of those around me. When in my truest form the walls I build to protect those around me are forced down."

He nodded at her words, but his eyes told her he did not fully understand. They never did.

"The bond between us is strong. You feel as I feel when I am too weak to hold up the walls." She explained to him.

Adelaide watched as understanding passed across his eyes and the frown faded away to a look of sadness and calmness. She had told him enough that he could finally understand what they were.

And what they could never be.

She felt sadness within her. She understood why her father had always looked at her with regret and sorrow. She thought of the life she could have had if she had not been chosen. High prospects and a long life, a simple life for a simple wolf.

She had never held the fate of such a life.

As Adam took a few quiet moments to himself and his thoughts, Adelaide let her eyes wander from his face to the entrance of her den. A full day had passed, and dusk loomed on the horizon as snow fell. Her heart constricted in her chest as she knew what was soon to come.

She slowly picked herself up from her bed mat and stood to her feet, looking around her den for what felt like the last time, before walking out of the cave entrance. She came to a stop at the cliffs edge and waited.

Adam came to stand next to her as she stood, calmly watching the sunset. The warm glow of the sun warmed her skin as flecks of snow stung her flesh. She felt the warm, tingly touch of Adams hand as he grasped her own, his fingers gripping tight, as if to remember her touch for eternity.

It was an intimated moment between the two, a peaceful one.

Even if only for a moment.

"It's time to begin." 

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