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Rejected Mate Follows Fate

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Alora Dennison is an orphaned child from a shamed bloodline surviving in her families old pack. On the dawn of her transition pushing her into adulthood she imprints on the mate she will be bonded to for an eternity, in an unexpected turn of fate. Only he isn't the man of her dreams. He is the only one in the entire state she would never have wanted to bond too. Colton Santo is the arrogant, dominant son of the Alpha from a rival pack which is set to unite the packs and reign in one kingdom. In years gone by his disdain for her and any from her bloodline has been prominent. Her treatment by his pack has pushed her to live in near isolation, fearful for her existence and now before all assembled, on the dawn of her awakening, they all just saw her imprint on their future leader. Fate has decreed it, but everyone around her is about to try and stop it. Fate isn't about to make it easy on her either, as a long forgotten war erupts in their lands, bringing an age old enemy with a thirst for blood back into the forefront of lycanthrope life. Will she survive long enough to ever find out why she has borne a black mark on her lineage her entire life? And why exactly, Colton's father is just so eager to see her dead. Will Colton step up and honour the bond, or will he be the one to deliver the final blow?

Chapter 1

You know those stories about unwanted rejects whose loved ones either died or abandoned them to drift aimlessly through the world? A worthless no one, almost invisible to other people. There is nothing spectacular about them, no grand rise from nothing to something as they dawn into adulthood.

Yeah, well, that’s kind of my story.

My name is Alora Dennison, and I am literally hours away from my Awakening Ceremony at the ripe old age of eighteen, with absolutely no one who gives a crap about me to be there; no support, no family, and definitely no friends. I'm a late bloomer, I guess. Not that it’s unusual in my bloodline, as almost every female in my family didn't 'come out' until they hit their late teens, from what I can remember. Much like the others in the orphanage, stuck here with me. Another reason we are snubbed and left to our own devices in this hellhole they call a home.

My ceremony has me churned up inside and restlessly pacing the room I share with Vanka. She's like me, although in all the years we’ve bunked together, I can't say we have ever become friends of any kind. She makes it clear she doesn't like me and, much like everyone around me, they all keep their distance. We tolerate one another, but none of us has ever bonded.

I'm an orphaned no-one whose parents died in the war ten years ago against the vampires. So is she, but it didn't warm her to me in any way. I guess because she’s from a leg of the Santo pack, and they have hated the Whyte pack since long before the war. We were feuding before the vampires united every one of us, and old scars and grudges are not something that wolves let go of quickly.

We were two small girls left with no immediate blood link guardians, put in this place for unwanted cubs to live out our days in unexceptional ways. It would have been kinder to end our misery back then than leave us to live as outcasts among our people, our own kind. Shunned because we are the shameful proof that their packs failed them. I don't think they knew what else to do with us. So many young with no one left to care for them and raise them in our ways and seen as cursed. They were ashamed of the failings of our families, and we are the ones to carry that burden like an eternal black mark painted on our faces.

I’m amazed that kids like us even get to go through with the ceremony. I mean, it's kind of a big deal, and we are kind of not. We’re a bit like the lost boys in Neverland, except ... none of us wants to stay here, and growing up is the only way out.

Your Awakening is a bit like graduation, in a sense. A passing from child to adult and usually where you would find your place, rank, in the pack, and get a mate. I have no delusions that it means anything of the sort for any of us turning tonight. There are four from the unwanted home, and I hear maybe three from the packs around. Just a handful of kids trying to break free, find their path, and all in the fabulous presence of the entire 'Packdom.'

The Packdom being the dozen or so wolf tribes from the state. They all have to convene on Shadow Rock to watch you transform fully for the first time under the first full moon of your birth month. It's not hard to figure out when you’re ready. In the weeks running up to your birthday, you start to change in small ways, and, goddamn, it hurts like having your insides snapped and stretched in fits of severe twisting pain and zero control over it happening.

The signs are pretty clear to all. Kind of like puberty for werewolves, I guess. Maturing, physical improvements, and a massive rise in appetite and aggression. Little moments where you start to transform painfully, and then it dissipates as quickly, so you never really reach the first transition, but it’s reported, and no one can hide it. The pain you know will come with the first time; it’s saved for the full moon after your birthday.

Some don't go through it until later in life, and some earlier. Usually, it is a sign of where you stand in the hierarchy when you turn. According to the Santo elders, the longer it takes, the weaker your DNA, but my parents never mentioned it when I was young. So, being eighteen puts me way down on the pecking order and confirms my bloodline was not that of warriors or strong enough to be anything of importance. Vanka is sixteen, and she too is turning tonight, but with Santo's blood somewhere in her veins, she should have turned far earlier. I guess whatever mix is in her is why they reject her as one of their own.

I mean, look at the Santos. They are the reigning pack in the state, and everyone in their bloodline turned before ten. Colton, the next heir as Alpha, is nineteen years old, lords over all in our kingdom, and he has been running with the pack since he was a mere eight years old.

Every single one of his family returned from the wars, which speaks volumes about the purity of their genes, strength, and abilities in battle. He's destined to take over from his father as Alpha one day, and the way things are heading, he won't just be Alpha of the Santo pack, but all of us. Something that has never happened in our lifetime but will begin a new dawn in how the packs live.

Chapter 2

Santo is not a nice guy. None of them are. He walks around surrounded by his sub pack, looks down at the likes of us, and never makes eye contact or responds to anyone below his station. That’s how it works here. Dominance and strength are everything to wolves. He has his father’s arrogance, and he knows that every female hitting puberty is craving to become his mate. He hasn’t officially paired or marked yet, and despite having the same girl always by his side, he’s fair game until he does.

Faultlessly good-looking in that dark Latino, pretty boy way with far too handsome a face. He’s over six feet of muscle and radiates aggression without trying, and is a rare black-furred wolf on turning, one of the largest among us. I think the one time he acknowledged my existence was the day he pushed me out of his way in passing. I tripped in front of him in the hallway to the great hall, and he didn't bat an eye or miss a step in shoving me back aggressively like I was a lightweight pi

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