Caden rubbed his forehead forcefully while looking at the stubborn Alpha in front of him.
He knew that Damon will resist, but this time he seems to be more determined than ever.
The truth is that Caden handled numerous emails from Elders who are trying to matchmake Damon with his next bride.
Elder Parker is unusually persistent in demanding that Damon meets Marcy (aka the bride candidate) in person.
As much as one Elder doesn ’t pose much of a threat, Damon already offended quite a bit of them. If not for Elders ’ public image of benevolent leaders, Caden is confident that Elders would blacklist Damon and smear his reputation while pulling the strings for other packs to unite in a war against the Dark Howlers pack.
Both Damon and Caden hate dealing with Elders who are a bunch of arrogant ex-Alphas, eager to prove that they still have the power. The whole council of Elders is a big mass of testosterone and over-inflated egos, ready to implode at the slightest provocation, and the scariest thing is that they have connections and the power to sway people.
The Dark Howlers are the biggest pack and they have capable warriors, but if several packs join forces, they would be at a disadvantage.
”It ’s more than three months since you met your last bride. They are impatient. ”, Caden continued persuading Damon. ”The rumor is that if Elder Parker is successful and Marcy becomes your Luna, he will gain enough support to be the next head of the Council. Will you allow him to climb over your back? Why don ’t you show that you are no one ’s pawn? ”
”That ’s what I ’m doing by ignoring him. ”, Damon responded.
”They are taking your silence as a sign of fear. You need to step into the light and take charge. ”
”Are you trying to manipulate me? ”, Damon asked in a dangerously low voice.
”No. ”, Caden lied with a straight face. ”As your Beta, I ’m reminding you of the facts. Why don ’t you handle this girl and shut them up? Or would you rather avoid that slight inconvenience of bedding a woman and risk causing trouble for the pack? ”
Damon cocked his eyebrow and pursed his lips. ”You are saying that I put that snobby woman in her place? ”
Snobby? Caden was not sure about Marcy ’s character, but if she is willing to accept an arranged marriage to a man she never met, she is probably not the best example of a she-wolf who is fit to be Luna.
Luna needs to fight for what she believes is right, and not allow others to use her. How can Marcy be a good Luna and take care of the pack if she can ’t take care of herself? No matter what her background is, a real Luna would approach Damon personally and not use connections to win him over.
In this case, it ’s obvious that Marcy ’s father and Elder Parker are pulling the strings.
If the marriage with Marcy goes through, Marcy ’s father (aka Alpha Edward) will also gain benefits even if Damon ignores him because it will be undeniable that they are connected via marriage, and that will improve Alpha Edward ’s standing. In addition to that, Alpha Edward probably made a deal with Elder Parker who recommended Marcy as the perfect Luna for the Dark Howlers pack.
It ’s a whole web of leeches, waiting for Damon to take the bait and Damon is perfectly aware of that.
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Damon did this many times before. He would visit the prospective bride, explore her thoroughly and then announce that a cheap slut can ’t be his Luna.
Other than insulting that woman, her father (aka the ambitious person), and their pack, that ’s also a setback for the Elder who was matchmaking Damon in that specific case.
No matter how much Damon offended any of them, they can ’t publicly admonish Damon because (officially) he came to meet his future bride and he found her lacking.
Caden saw that Damon is considering it, and he thought to give him a push in the right direction.
”She is not just any woman. Did you see the photo? Tall, blonde, a looker, and she has quite the assets… ”, Caden cupped his palms in front of his chest, gesturing that Marcy has bountiful breasts.
Damon pressed his lips into a line and typed on his keyboard. His eyes skimmed over the content, and he frowned.
’What do you think? ’, Damon mentally asked his wolf.
’She looks like trouble. ’, his wolf responded.
Damon groaned in frustration. ’If I go, it ’s trouble. If I ignore this summon, it ’s trouble. Which trouble should I pick? ’
’Stop acting like it ’s the first time. Why are you asking me when you know the answer? ’
’Because you are my voice of reason. ’, Damon responded.
’Good that you know. But in this case, you figured it out without me. I ’m aware that you don ’t like dancing with snakes, but as a good Alpha, you should avoid direct confrontation when possible and use a softer approach. This bride-business aside, you might find out something useful while staying in their packhouse. They won ’t dare act against you if you announce your location. Now let me sleep and don ’t bother me unless it ’s an emergency… ’
Damon felt his wolf slipping away as he retracted at the back of his mind.
Damon is unique. Other werewolves can sense their wolf and exchange emotions. They can feel when their wolf is restless, angry, or happy, while Damon can actually hold a conversation. No one knows about this, other than Damon and his wolf.
Damon ’s wolf is one of the key contributors to Damon becoming and staying the Alpha of the Dark Howlers pack when he was only seventeen years old.
His wolf is not very chatty, but he gives the right advice whenever Damon needs it, and Damon is aware that his wolf holds the wisdom of many lifetimes.
Damon sensed his wolf, just like any other werewolf when he was in his early teens. And on the night when his parents perished, his wolf spoke to him for the first time.
’Sorry, kid… ’, his wolf said and Damon jolted out of his bed in the middle of the night.
”What the…? ”, Damon mumbled while looking around in search of the source of that sound.
’I ’m in your head. Your father asked me to take care of you. ’
Damon was totally confused. ”What? How? Who are you? ”
’I ’m something that your kind calls the wisdom of the Alpha, and I can manifest myself through your wolf. I served your grandfather, your father, and now I serve you. ’
”Why did you stop serving my father? ”
’I ’m sorry, kid… he and your mother are gone… ’
This was a huge emotional shock for Damon that forced him to step into adulthood abruptly.
Since then, Damon relies on his wolf to keep him in check.
Not every Alpha can talk to his wolf, and his wolf didn ’t have answers if he is the only one, but he advised Damon to keep this a secret.
Back to the present…
”It says that she is untouched. ”, Damon said while gesturing toward the screen of his computer. ”You know I like them experienced. And as much as she is fine-looking, it ’s not worth a full day traveling. I can have a dozen of such women within half an hour drive or without moving from this chair. ”
Caden forced a smile while trying to conceal his irritation.
In Damon ’s words: virgins need to be courted with flowers and chocolates and sweet words, and after he is done with them, they become clingy.
Damon doesn ’t have the time to waste on such nonsense. Intimacy for him doesn ’t go beyond pleasures of the flesh. That ’s as far as any woman reached him.
”What ’s the worst that can happen? ”, Caden continued persuading Damon. ”You get to taste a new piece of meat, and when your fun is over, you announce that she is not good enough to be your Luna. Marcy may be untouched on paper, but my sources say that ’s not completely true. I will watch your back, while Maya will collect dirt on the girl so you can create a believable story. We know the drill. We get in and out and are back in three-to-four days, max, and we get to shut down Elders for another couple of months. ”
Damon ’s jaw twitched as he grit his teeth.
”Fine. We leave in… ”, Damon paused and glanced at the calendar. ”Five days. ”
Caden released the breath he was holding. ”I will get everything in order. ”
Caden left the study feeling victorious. Maya loves traveling and when they accompany Damon on his visit to the bride, Maya and Caden roleplay as spies on a secret mission that ends up with a steamy session between the sheets. Just thinking about it makes him excited.
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