Chapter 15

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It was the night of the full moon and Cinder had prepared herself the day before by performing the regeneration ritual with Sebastian in the woods of the werewolf kingdom. Sean's presence had helped to deter any wolves from the area and the ritual was able to be performed safely.  Cinder had plans on helping Sebastian, Adrian and Sean that night and needed her rest beforehand. She wouldn't be able to rest until much later in the night, so she entered her room in the afternoon to try to get some sleep, closing the balcony doors and massive curtains that blocked out the light to make her bedroom dark to help her sleep better. Sean was standing by her door, watching over her while she slept, thinking about the Regeneration ritual he had watched. It was a rare thing for an outsider, especially one that wasn't a witch, to witness one; even more rare to see one between a witch and werewolf bondmate pair. Sean would have to leave her in a few hours to be locked up in the change cells for his first change but for the moment he could watch over her while he thought about things.

She slept until an hour before Sebastian and Adrian would start to change. Once she was awake, Sean made sure she went in to be with Sebastian before he left for the cells. Cinder's attempts to catch his eye before he left were unsuccessful and without an insight into his mind without forcing her way in, she was unable to gauge where he was at with what was about to happen to him. Cinder helped Sebastian through his change first as always and then she left him on the floor of his room to rest as she went to Adrian next. She lay on the floor resting with him after his change, his great Lycan form surrounding her with his lighter timber-wolf coloring. She only had a few moments to rest before she needed to go help Sean through his first transition and her mind was buzzing. Adrian in his Lycan form rose up and he looked at Cinder with his glowing electric-blue eyes that would inspire fear in most but never in her. He and Sebastian had agreed to go protect the entrance to the ravine that led to the Kingdom, during the full moon, while all the other werewolves were changing. It was the Kingdom's most vulnerable time, but their anonymity had always protected them before now. Now with the Hunters searching for them, it was a prime time for an attack if the Kingdom was discovered.

Sebastian came into the room in his full armor that molded to his large black Lycan body perfectly. He stalked across the room, his glowing yellow eyes trained on Cinder before he glanced up and nodded at Adrian. Adrian had started putting on his golden armor, preparing to head to the ravine. He also had a special custom set created by Cinder and the royal armorist. Once they were ready, the three went down to the change cells to drop Cinder off to help Sean from outside his cell. Sebastian hated leaving her even this vulnerable, but she had compromised with him by putting her armor on and wearing her weapons down to help Sean. That way if a rogue werewolf tried to attack her she could defend herself with more than just magic if needed and she had some protection against a bite with her armor. Sean watched Cinder walk to his cell in her armor and weapons with the two massive armored Lycans at her sides, their glowing eyes shining in the dark as power radiated from the trio. She looked like a dark warrior queen that was absolutely lethal.

They stopped in front of his cell and the two Lycans looked down at him with their glowing eyes. Their towering forms reaching just above nine feet in height filled the cell's bar wall. "Be safe," Cinder said to them both and they turned and stalked off to protect their Kingdom. Cinder turned to Sean and looked at him. She could already see the approaching change in his eyes. She wished she could tell if he was nervous or scared or anything. He wore a look on his face she hadn't seen since the fortress; it was a look of accepting fate. She came up to the bars and looked at him, reaching her hand in toward him. He came close and looked down at her, letting her touch his face. You're tired already, Cinder. You should go rest. She shook her head thinking back, I'm here to help you Sean. I'm not going anywhere. – Don't fuss over me, witch. Cinder watched as the glow intensified in his eyes as the moon reached its peak. He turned from her and walked deeper into the dark of the cell and began taking his clothes off, throwing them on the cot suspended off the wall. Her eyes caught sight of some of that tattoos that seemed to be covering his entire body, but the darkness hid him from her sight.

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