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The Run: A Bet With The Alpha

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The cage doors are released and I open my sapphire coloured eyes, dashing out of the prison and into the forest. Seven days for the full moon to be blue. Seven days from the starting line to the finish Seven days, that’s how long I had to make it to the lodge as an unmated female." Legends of werewolves have gone back centuries. Always including the Moon Goddess and her blessing of soulmates to the beings she created. But the ugly truth is there is no such thing as soulmates. There is only The Run. An event created centuries ago held twice a year during a blue moon where she-wolves run from their male counter parts. If they are captured, they are mated and marked, claimed by whoever captures them first. No one is exempted from this event - not even Grace Harvest. After being able to avoid attending the event since turning eighteen, Grace finds herself unable to find an excuse not to participate this time. With her last hope of remaining unmated until she can fall in love, she makes a bet with her Alpha. If she wins, he can no longer force wolves of his pack to participate in The Run and allow them to find love. If he wins, Grace will be mated, and her pack mates are forced to go no matter what. But what will happen when she meets a golden haired wolf by the name Caden Wolfrain, who instantly captures her attention. Will she do all she can to win the bet, will Caden win her heart or will the secrets Caden keeps force her to cut ties with this golden haired wolf without a second thought no matter the heart break.

Chapter 1 Grace

The soft breeze rolls past me ruffling the heavy gown dawned on my small frame as I stare out into the field of moon flowers. The forest is alive with the sound of the creatures of the night. Quiet but still expressing the life it held within. A soft touch moves my attention to the long golden hair tied with a ribbon as a smile graces my lips. Finally he is mine. The full blue moon illuminates the sky as I lean in to kiss the man I love…

My eyes quickly open as the dream still fresh in my memory haunts me. The gown that women wore with the corset boddice and flowing layers of fabric is something from a long, long time ago. One that I would normally see in movies or costume period drams. I sigh, thinking how I have been having these dreams since turning eighteen two years ago. How a woman and a man would appear under the moonlight and silently display their love. How the woman in my dreams has my silver hair that flows down to her knees and the man with long golden hair always tied out of his way. I wonder what these dreams mean and if it has something to do with The Run.

I can't help but to turn my head towards the window beside me. The moon staring back down at me as if mocking me. It's as if the Moon Goddess is watching what I am doing knowing that it will soon be the week of the blue moon, the week for The Run. I hated it, dreaded it. An event created over a thousand years when the first werewolves were created by the Goddess herself. An event for wolves to run through a forest and be claimed and mated. But the truth is its just a way to approve of r*p* under the disguise of mating and growing a pack's strength.

In a few days I will be sent to the Moon Goddess' forest when the full moon turns a brilliant hue of blue. But the truth is I did not want to run through a forest of wolves, the females dodging males as they run for their freedom. I did not want to be forcefully claimed like my mother was. Never knowing if the male that took me as his mate - a male who just finished rapping me in the Moon Goddess' forest - is going to be good to me and will give me a life of pure happiness or will abuse me and create an even worse hell than I already live in.

I want a chance to fall in love. I want to go on dates and build a future with someone deserving. I want a male who would bashfully smile at me before leaning in for my first kiss and holding me close for the rest of our life. I want my life to be mine and to have love that would last forever.

"Grace?" I snap out of my thoughts of self-pity and turn to look at all the wolves in the room, realizing that the Alpha is directing his statement to me. His eyes held annoyance at the fact I had stopped paying attention to him. If a male had done this, it would have been fine. But I am a female. I have to sit quietly and listen to the males as best as I can in this pack.

"Sorry, I dozed off." It isn't a lie since snores from other wolves – male wolves- echoed the quiet room in this long meeting that the Alpha, the Beta - my father- and the Theta –our third in command- called forth for the mate-less wolves eighteen or older in Silver Birch to remind them that they will be taking part in The Run and the rules we are to follow.

"As I was saying, The Run is filled with multiple threats." My father continues, sending me a glare. I suppress the snarl rising in my throat and try my best to pay attention as the other wolves snicker behind me.

"Eli the head of the Vampire Coven in that area already alerted every Alpha that rogue fledglings have escaped before being welcomed into the coven and will be hunting for fresh blood to drink. He asked us to pass this message along to our members so when you all are in the forest keep your eyes alert." He announces, a frown on his face as he looks to the Alpha. Closing my eyes for a moment, I think back to my father ranting on about Vampires and how they should be killed still in one of his drunken stupor. Vampires were once our mortal enemy as they were created by the Sun God out of boredom. It led to the goddess creating us wolves to keep the Vampires in check and protect the balance between supernatural and the mundane world. Wars raged on for years with many lives being lost. The most tragic event being the Salem Witch Hunt where anyone deemed unnatural by the scared humans were hunted and killed whether they were Vampires, Witches, Werewolves, Fae or Human.

Chapter 2 Grace

It wasn't until a temporary treaty was signed over one-hundred years ago. Things still happen between our two species that cause much uproar – including the Vampires instigating the humans to cause a war for the Vampires to enjoy an endless buffet – but we have been able to keep our races hidden from the humans thanks to the treaty. Unfortunately for us with the Fledgling escaping there will be some trouble ahead. Fledglings especially rogue ones, poses a threat to both our species. This year's event would be even more dangerous with Fledglings running wild at night. All species will need to keep an eye out for them just in case they escape and make their way to a human city. We do not need a repeat of the Salem Witch Hunt scare.

"Let's not forget about the faeries that live in the Moon Goddess' forest either. If you run into one stay still and listen to them until an opportunity to escape arises. Faeries are known to teleport wolves into traps or into the arms of un-mated rog

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