Moon, Blood, and Wolf's Bane: Kismet

The promising lights of a small town called Tomahawk glinted in the distance, taunting him, daring him to drive just that little bit further, that little bit faster. Owen sighed, blinking slowly then widening his eyes to keep his focus on the dark road. It was late evening in the middle of Nowhere, Canada and he had been driving all day, as well as the day before and the day before that and God didn't know how many bloody days before that. He knew he needed a break, but he was also certain that he was far too jittery to sleep.

He looked at the clock and sighed, fidgeting in the dark cab of the pickup. His skin itched. No, under his skin itched. He knew what that meant. He needed to do it. That thing. Change. The thought forced on several full-body shivers of horror. He hated... changing. It reminded him that he wasn't... well, wasn't... He took a deep breath. Say it Owen! Just say it, you pussy. Human, he thought, hating it, hating himself.

"Not even human." he growled softly to himself. Eventually he realised that he hadn't even registered the time when he had looked at the clock previously. He looked again, the little numbers glowing bright blood red in the darkness. 23:49. He sighed heavily, looking wistfully at Tomahawk in the distance. Still miles yet, about an hours drive, he reckoned silently. A sudden wave of anger rolled through him. He had wanted to be there by tonight, Goddammit! He smashed the heel of his palm into the steering wheel, then immediately regretted it when a small dent appeared. Scowling, he watched a bright green Mini overtake him, it's tail lights illuminating the cabin with a sickly scarlet glow.

Absently, he glanced to his left, and his vision seemed to shift somehow, though he couldn't say how. Now, the dark landscape outside seemed a little more defined, and certain features jumped out at him like when he watched a 3D movie. The most prominent feature was a forest, a relatively small one, but a forest none the less. Sweeping his dark fringe out his eyes, Owen peered closer at the trees, then spotted a layby just along the road. His wolf itched insistenly inside him and his knuckles whitened on the wheel. Surely he could risk a little run here?

Then, the decision made instantly somewhere in his gut, he pulled over.

A burning impatience seized him as soon as the growling engine cut out. The keys rattled as he ripped them from the ignition. The door slammed and it was only supreme levels of self-restraint that stopped him changing right there, right next to the car. He locked the car frantically, sprinting off into the green-tinted darkness of the forest. He stopped behind an old oak - not that he had any idea how he identified it in the blackness - and stripped frantically, fumbling briefly with his boxers before a sleek black and white wolf erupted into the night.

Owen hit the grass running - literally - his paws making quiet thuds as he pelted through the trees. The wind - fresh and smelling of small hot-blooded creatures, pine needles and other soft scents of the forest - hit his face, streamed up his muzzle, roared past his ears and through his thick fur.


He didn't know how long he ran. Or how far. But he was panting, and the light was filtering in patches through the leaves above him as he streaked along. He returned to the trees near the roadside only reluctantly, his skin itching briefly as his fur receded and he stood after a moment, his pale skin almost glowing in the half-sunlight-half-moonlight. He dressed quickly, the chill making him shiver now he had no fur to shield him. Picking up the keys from the underbrush, he jogged back to the car, a slow easy smile spreading on his face. His wolf was sated for now. He estimated that he wouldn't have to... change again for at least another four or five days. Unlocking the car, he climbed in, locked the doors and checked the clock. 3:37. Still time for at least a 5 hour kip. He wound the drivers seat down, turning it into some form of a makeshift bed, grabbed a scrappy blanket from the back seat, threw it over himself and then slept dreamlessly from sheer exhaustion.


Approximately 6 and a half hours later, he awoke dazedly, blinking blearily. He was cold. And something was digging into his hip. He sat up and realised it was the gearstick. Sighing heavily and brushing the sleep dust from his eyes, he started the engine, rubbing his arms to get the circulation going. His breath frosted a little in the cab. He turned the heater up a couple of notches. You're in fucking Canada now, Owen, he thought to himself wearily. It's like this all the time. Get used to it.
Shaking his head and running a weary hand through sleep-mussed shaggy hair, yawned briefly, and glanced at the road. It was almost empty of traffic, only a yellow Ford and a silver Range Rover trundling past. Winding the seat back to its original position, he pressed the accelerator and pulled out. An hour's drive to Tomahawk. He would stop there, maybe find a bar...

The pickup ate the distance with an ease Owen liked. He would be there soon, he would see people... humans. How could he deal with that? He wasn't one of them anymore. Still, he looked forward to the company, even if it wasn't his - what? - species? He stopped thinking of that and pondered instead on the vague rumour he was following.

He had heard it a couple of months ago, suspicious but hopeful whisperings of a pack, a wolf pack, gathering in Glendon - a tiny town in Alberta state, Canada. Owen had jumped on the chance to be with his own... kind? He shook his head, a humourless laugh hissing through his teeth. Man, I need to find some answers! Human company, a drink, maybe a bed if he could afford it, he would stomach that in Tomahawk and be greatful, then he would go on to Glendon and whatever awaited him there.
The pickup sped past the great black wolf in human form. Because thats how Sollux saw himself. Wolves were noble, loyal, primal while humans were... human. He read the sighn as he crossed into town. 'Tomahawk.' He never doubted that he was heading the right way. The trucker he had hitched with knew these parts well and he knew who he was looking for, intimately. She wouldn't endanger her son, their son by trying to make it alone and he had smelled him that night. He that had always hated Sollux. Her brother. He had her and Sollux was going to get her back. She was HIS mate.

He saw a diner, a small place but it would have food, and the last time Sollux had eaten was a greasy toasted sandwich 500 miles south. The former alpha was hungry. His shoes crunched over the gravel as he walked along the road before he reached the paved parking lot. He walked quickly his stomach growling as he pushed open the door with the tingle of the bell.

He sat, it was still mostly empty. "Coffee, cheeseburger and how far it it to Glendon?" he asked taking out the Canadian dollars he'd managed to exchange with the trucker.

"7 kilometers, thats around four and a half miles." the middle aged woman behind the counter replied sliding a mug towards him and filling it and adding a couple of packets or sugar and a jug of milk. "Seems a few people are heading that way, wonder if they've got some sort of fair going."
The pickup thundered into the car park of a small cafe and Owen pulled into an empty space close to the shabby building, cutting the engine. He leaned forward and rested his forehead on the steering wheel, taking a deep breath. Okay. People. Real, human people. Don't fuck this up, Owen. Anxiously rubbing his cheek, he ran a hand through his hair, mussing it, checked the rearview then smoothed it down again. He kicked a little at the accelerator, jittery butterflies suddenly erupting in his gut. He hadn't spoken to anyone - that is, properly spoken to anyone - for days, weeks now. Passing polite chatter in petrol stations and motel receptions didn't really count in his opinion.

Gathering his courage, Owen pushed open the door and stepped out. I really need a drink, he thought, sighing. Battered trainers made their way across the stones of the parking lot and hesitated at the door to the diner. Owen took another deep breath, leaning on the door frame. Why was it suddenly so difficult to be normal? He was walking into a cafe, ordering a drink and maybe a sandwich, asking for directions to the nearest B&B then taking his purchases out to the truck, consuming them and going on his way. Simple as.

Invigorated for a second, Owen was just about to discreetly push open a door when suddenly they both burst open, accompanied by the frenzied jangling of bells. Utterly bewildered, Owen felt a plump arm ensnare his shoulders.

"What're you doin' out 'ere, my looove?" came the heavy Canadian/French accent from the plump, middle-aged woman currently dragging him into the cafe.

"I- I was just c- c-" Owen couldn't believe it. He was stuttering. In front of some woman! Why was being - what he was - making him socially inept all of a sudden??

"Come in 'ere an' have a drink on the hoouse, eh pumpkin?" Said the woman-mountain he was crushed against. Owen must have muttered some sort of assenting sound because she released him almost, now only pulling him in by the crook of his elbow. He was flung, flustered, onto a stool as the woman - apparently an employee in the place - strode behind the bar and proceeded to whip up some devilish array of cocktails - and served him a foaming pint of bitter. Owen shook himself mentally. Get a hold of yourself, man! Reaching forward, he smiled at the burly barwoman, took a sip of the pint and watched as she promptly disappeared out the back of the room.

Taking the near silence as a refuge, Owen grabbed the opportunity to survey his surroundings. The wide faux-wood bar separated the quarter of the room containing drinks, glasses and the like from the rest of the floor. Fairly cosy sofas and chairs were centred around tables all over the dim room, each one upholstered in a dusky red - the colour of dried blood, Owen found his brain whispering - and all, fortunately, empty of patrons.

Wait. A prickling in his skull alerted him to - what? Something. A presence. Owen spun round frantically, his teeth clacking together audibly as he barely bit back a low, threatening animalistic growl. A dark stranger sat at the bar several seats across from him. The man, Owen registered, squashing down the aggressiveness that somehow now rose to the surface, was huge - built like a wardrobe. Owen prided himself in having some sort of lean strength to his frame, but he acknowledged that this guy could probably grind him to a pulp.

Black hair shadowed his face, but Owen's stomach clenched nervously when he caught a glimpse of orangey eyes under a fringe. Forget about the sandwich? He questioned internally, then brushed it off. He had just as much right to be here as this shifty dude and he wasn't going to move just because his bar-mate looked like he ate serial killers for breakfast. Owen turned back to his beer, now half warm, and cleared his throat, pointedly ignoring the risky stranger. He didn't want to get involved in any funny business here. Just wait 'til the woman comes back, ask for the quickest form of meal she has on offer, pay and then leave. Plan formulated, Owen relaxed just a tad. He'd be fiiiiiiiine.

However, after a further 17 and a half minutes - yes, he'd been discreetly timing - of stoic and stony silence in the diner, and still no sign of the woman returning, Owen scowled and admitted reluctant defeat. Steeling himself, he turned toward the stranger.

"Uh, hello or um.. bonjour, mate. I'm Ow-er- Wanderer, here." He offered a hand with his crappy introduction, but praised himself on making up a code-name. If the Police or - god forbid - the Dog Catchers were out looking for him, Owen would be the first name they'd call. Swallowly with difficulty, he awaited a reply from the stranger.
The mug empty and still waiting for his burger Sollux was now being greeted by a pup. "Hi." he said lifting his gave from the depths of the chipped ceramic. His amber eyes running over the other taking in everything from his eyes to his hair to the nervous way he clung to his drink, to the way his nostrils moved as he breathed but most of all Sollux saw his fear. A fear that made Sollux forget the growl that had initially made the hair at the back of his neck stand up and shoulders tighten in preparation. He know what it was like to be traveling alone.

He reached out and closed his hand around Owen's firmly but not uncomfortably. "Sollux, though Ow'er seems you're not the only wanderer."

His accent was hard to place though definitely from south of the border. A voice that didn't belong anywhere in particular. Sollux glanced towards the kitchen as his stomach growled again, the look of a hungry predator crossing his face before finally the sound of frying began coming from inside along with the smell of meat that made his hunger worse.

There was something other than nerves with the newcomer though, part smell, part the growl, Sollux already knew he might actually get along with him.

"So where you heading Wanderer?" he asked, a genuine inquiry. They were still circling each other, maybe they'd work together, maybe they'd walk out of here and never see each other again. "Not too many young lone wolves these days."
"Hi." The stranger's voice was deep, calm and collected, but roughened. Owen absently wondered by what. Split up with his girl? Disowned by his family? Lost his job? Owen tried to study the man further as they grasped hands. The Irishman wasn't one for poetic sounding turns of phrase, but this guy looked like there was a shadow over him. It was as if someone had somehow cut the light of ease and humour from his life - and now all that was left were days of hard graft and, he peered a little closer, was that pain he saw, reflected in bright amber eyes? He supposed so. And he just couldn't shake the feeling that this mysterious man was somehow linked with the new life he hoped to gain in Glendon. With the pack.

"Sollux, though Ow'er seems you're not the only wanderer." Owen let a fleeting grin light his face before retreating back to his seat - but he remained turned toward the man - Sollux - feeling, among nervousness and a small knot of fear, curiousity and hope - a spark of hope that not everyone was hostile to him here. Not that this man knew what he was. Owen wouldn't have been surprised if the man had a shotgun in the back seat of his car. He watched the man glance toward the room where the barwoman had disappeared to and picked out the sizzle of fat on a cooker - then a grumble of a hungry belly, which in turn reminded Owen of his own original intention of getting food. Sollux's nostrils flared momentarily and Owen noted a small smirk - no - a smile. Suddenly he got the intangible impression that he might actually get on with this guy.

"So where are you heading, Wanderer?" Sollux asked softly, sounding sincere. But a sudden bout of suspicion made Owen's muscles tense, as if he was about to have a tooth-and-claw scrap with the other man. Forcing his hackles down - literally - Owen considered the pros and cons of telling the truth. Cons - the man could be a PI or an undercover cop, sent after him to haul him in... but even as he thought it, Owen knew, he just knew it wasn't true. So the pros then. Sollux might actually help him. The man was mysterious, sure, an enigma, but it was a good sort of mysterious - Owen wanted to learn more and he thought that Sollux's advice might actually be useful to him. Owen took a deep fortifying breath.

"I'm going to Glendon." He said, slowly, calmly, and watched the spark of recognition flicker across Sollux's face. No, more than a spark, a flame, a bloody inferno of recognition when it came to Glendon. Yep, Sollux was defintely some sort of surefire link to whatever awaited him tomorrow, and Owen figured having the dark-haired man as an ally wouldn't do him wrong. Or so he hoped, anyway. Sollux nodded slowly.

"Not too many young lone wolves these days." Sollux rumbled quietly, and suddenly Owen became aware of the wild, woodsy scent permeating the man - No. The wolf. He was a wolf. And so was Owen. Well, of sorts. The Irishman found himself flailing for a kindred spirit - one that actually knew what he was doing. And abruptly Owen didn't need to quash the aggressiveness in him so much - it was natural.

"I had to run from my homeland because of... what I am. I was hoping Glendon could be my new home, or at least my refuge for a while." Owen explained softly. He sensed that the man/wolf before him was some sort of wildcard, which is why he offered the alternative to staying in Glendon permanently. He knew vaguely of wolf hierarchy - one Alpha and the rest submissive. Other dominants were wiped off the map. Owen wanted to make sure Sollux knew he wasn't trying to challenge him - Owen knew instinctively this man was a brawny wolf, well used to fighting off rivals. Glancing up from his beer where his gaze had somehow been drawn, Owen looked over at the other man, who was also in a similarly weary, thoughtful position. The Irishman smiled a little. There was definitely an alliance to be made here.
Ethan had enjoyed his time with Remmi and had even set her up at the motel just on the outskirts of town and returned home rather late that night. He hoped that he'd at least wake up in time to get to the bank on time, although he was sure his workers could handle it. When he returned home he made sure to check in on Coco as she slept to make sure she was still there, and quietly closed her door as he headed to his own room, and flopped onto his own bed.

He awoke to the sounds of Coco calling for him but he soon heard the front door close. That girl, she'll get in trouble if she keeps wandering around like that. I'd best check on her on my way to work. Rolling over onto his back he shielded his eyes to the bright sunlight streaming through his window and sighed as he dragged himself out of bed. With a light groan he started his regular morning ritual, stripping down and heading to his shower.

With a cup of coffee in his thermos and the paper neatly tucked under his arm he made sure that his vest was smooth and unwrinkled as he stepped out the front door and shut it, heading down the street towards the bank, which would take him right by the park where he had seen Coco at a few times. He would check on her and then head straight to the bank to make sure everything was being done correctly for the day. Maybe Remmi would happen to walk by and he could step out to say hi...of course that's if he wasn't busy...

Sean had been up early and snuck out of the house to pick up some breakfast for his boys before the truck with all their things showed up and they'd have to set up their new house. Of course, he didn't know if anywhere served breakfast, or if a place did, where they would be. Shrugging to himself he walked down the driveway, past his car (No use in driving in such a small town unless they were going far) and down the street, heading towards the lone street that marked "downtown" Glendon. If anyone had donuts for Aidyn and Parker and some coffee for himself it would be there, who knows, maybe he'd even run into Sara or one of the others he knew from Raymond.

As the memories of Raymond came to mind a shiver ran down Sean's spine. The horrors of what had happened reached Sean's ears in NYC, just as he had been working on the beginnings of his research. He had hid the pain from Parker and most certainly Aidyn, he couldn't believe what the council had done to hide the events of Raymond, the massacre of his people. It was downright monstrous of them but it couldn't be helped now. He had more important things to think about, like how was he going to find a cure for the cursed affliction so that werewolves could go public, without fear of creating killing machines, and people like the council wouldn't have a say in their lives anymore and they couldn't do what they did back in Raymond again.

He pushed those thoughts to the back of his mind as he found himself on the main street of the town and began looking for a diner or something of the sort. Now about those donuts for my boys...
[size=+1]“There's someone I need to kill.”

Zack said the words simply, in a matter-of-fact tone. Far too casual for someone informing another of the fact that he intends to murder someone. I stared at my companion for a moment, before getting my senses back and nodding slowly.
“Alright, cool.”
“When we get there, stay in the truck.” At this, I almost objected loudly, but held my tongue; acting like an immature kid wouldn't get me any points in Zack's book, I knew.

I'd just need to try something else.

There was another minute or so of silence, and then Zack simply said, “Just know that if I'm not back in an hour, start driving until you reach Glendon, and find Sara.” At this, I do react, staring over at the man in confusion; he was far too casual about the prospect that he might die in this encounter, something that worried me more than a little. “What?” Zack asked after seeing the look on my face.
“You not a bit more... worried that this might get you killed? You seem pretty chilled about the whole thing.”

Zack didn't answer, not immediately, and for the rest of the drive to Zack's 'de-tour' we sat in silence. Not that I minded that much; the silence gave me some time to come up with a vague plan of action for what I would do when we got there.

A few hours passed, with nothing but the radio emitting songs neither of us listened to in order to break the silence. Finally, Zack pulled in and killed the engine. With a simple nod to me, he pushed open the car-door and wandered away, leaving me alone in the beat-up old truck, the radio still blaring music I didn't want to listen to.

I waited five minutes, impatiently tapping my foot on the bottom of the car, before sighing and pushing open my door. “Fuck this...” I muttered to myself, “No way in hell am I sitting in the car like a five year-old whilst you go off and get yourself killed, Zack.” I moved round to the back of the car and wrenched open the boot, reaching in to take the handgun we'd acquired during our breakout. I didn't know how useful it would be, but figured it'd at least at to the intimidation factor.

Then I wandered along after Zack, to see who it was he wanted to kill so damn badly.
Sollux turned back to the bar. He knew what it was like to be young, alone and running. "Me too." he said staring into the empty mug again. He didn't say from what, he wasn't talking specifics yet with the wanderer, but wolves, pack wolves were social creatures by nature and he hadn't been able to talk about it with anyone.

His hand tightened around the mug as he brooded. They were hunted and killed. He had tried to fight back and now almost everyone he knew was dead and he had been searching for the two who weren't for half a year. In Glendon he either hoped to find them of the person he knew where they were. It made him angry that he had taken her even if in doing so he'd saved her life, and Sollux had failed to protect her.

He relaxed his grip and took a breath as their food arrived the woman giving Owen a smile and seemed to hops Sollux wouldn't notice her. He usually had that impression on people. Owen hadn't fared much better. It was enough to make him grin. He wondered what the Alpha in Glendon would be like, and the Betas. Wanderer would most likely be an Omega until he grew into his fangs a bit. He guy almost reminded Sollux of Brian, the kid they'd found about to be killed by hunters though Wanderer didn't seen quite as skittish considering there were no humans with sabot loaded shotguns around.
"Me too" said Sollux softly, and Owen knew, just knew there was a story untold that implemented this man/wolf into the Glendon pack. He hoped it wasn't bad, or if it was, that he wouldn't get too caught up in it. He needed a safe place, just for a while, and even though he could see Sollux being a strong ally, maybe even - and Owen used the word hesitantly - a friend, answers and a pack in Glendon were what he wanted and he had to make sure this wolf didn't get in the way of that. But at the same time, he noted the desire to talk underlying the other man's words. He had been alone just like Owen for a long time and the chance to have a comradely conversation with someone who understood was too good an opportunity to pass up.

Sollux didn't seem to have any more words forthcoming, well not aloud, anyway, so Owen took another long draught of beer. After a moment, the doors leading to the kitchens rattled nosily, making his jump and his heart beat fast, then he never recovered as the barwoman returned in a colourful whirlwind of over-concern and motherly-ness, depositing Sollux's food - a questionable looking cheeseburger - on the bar before him and turning to Owen with a smile.

"And what would 'chu like, deary?" she asked, and Owen leaned back, a tentative smile on his face to cover his frown. Did he really look like he needed that much mothering? Over the woman's shoulder, he noted a fridge filled with sandwiches, chocolate and the like. He ordered three tuna-and-mayonnaise sarnies, two chocolate bars and a few cans - six beers and six Cokes, for the journey. He pushed the money over the counter and proceeded to devour the first sandwich, hunger suddenly overcoming him. He wolfed it down, realised the pun in his mind, choked on a crust as he laughed, then broke open the second seal.

Glancing over at Sollux while he ate, Owen registered a deep frown on his forehead - he was thinking. Hard. But of what? Then he hurriedly looked back to his sandwich as the man turned to consider him briefly, as if he was comparing him to someone. Owen internally shook himself, shut up or you'll think of him as a threat again like you did before. A tingle moved up his spine as his wolf surfaced hopefully, but Owen squashed it down. Hw would not fight with this man. Finishing his second sandwich and beginning on the third, Owen turned to Sollux again, deciding the silence had gone on for a tad too long.

"So," he cleared his thoat, realising that his request might sound clingy and desperate, but at loss for how to word it differently. "We're both going to Glendon. You got a car, or d'you wanna catch a lift in mine?" The Irishman almost slapped himself - have you got a car? - who doesn't have a car? Then a thought struck him. Unless the man was travelling in wolf form?
Solux's teeth tore onto the burger. The roll was past its prime and the meat dry but to the hungry wolf it was heaven. Cheese was one thing Sollux always missed when he had to hunt for his own food. Though just as he was wiping his hand on a serviette Owen spoke again.

There it was in his words. The olive branch, it amused Sollux that it was the other who had offered it. Though he had to wonder it he said it while meaning it or to break the silence. The Wanderer was scared, out alone with no pack and heading to parts unknown. At his age Sollux was already leading his and had taken a mate. Though Owen was looking for security, someone to look up to perhaps and someone to have his back if it came to it. It was all there in his tone and posture. The catch in his throat meant he was worried how he'd come across but not having to walk into town was welcome news.

"Thanks." he said "Beats being picked up by the police for searching the town on foot, or paw." he looked at the collection of cans on front of Owen and then at the the kid himself wondering if he was making up for being in a country where he was legal age. "Though if you need me to drive you'll be able to take a break.

Sollux was tired he'd been on the road mostly hitchhiking, walking, or shifting and carrying his clothes for a long time but he was nothing if not focused. And so know to finding the answer make him want to howl with repressed excitement. After everything he was one step closer.
"Thanks." said Sollux after a moment, with a small smirk on his face. "Beats being picked up by the police for searching the town on foot, or paw." Owen grinned in response, relieved for some more permanent company. He had to admit now that going back to the pickup sounded a lot more welcoming. He watched the man briefly eye the stack of cans on the bar. "Though if you need me to drive you'll be able to take a break." Either Owen looked younger than his 19 years, the man doubted his drinking ability or he thought that Owen was going to drink all of the fluids - alcoholic and non - at once, tonight. He grinned. Nope, he definitely wanted to be fully lucid when meeting a whole integrated pack of wolves tomorrow.

"You're welcome, mate," he said, acknowledging that the man had said paw as well as foot. So he had been travelling as a wolf. It was a wonder he hadn't been shot at in some states. Maybe he had. Owen patted the cans beside him. "Not just for the journey," he grinned, all 'Irish boy' charm, with just a hint of reassurance added. Though the other man looked far from needing to be reassured, Owen added the undertone anyway. He needed Sollux to trust him a little. "Just making the most of the facilities, eh?"

Pushing his fringe back from his face, Owen considered the man before him again. It was pretty clear, through his amber eyes, the way he carried himself, the way he spoke and acted, that Sollux considered himself more a wolf than a man, whereas for Owen being a wolf on the side was more a punishment, expelling him from his old life and into this new, unpredicatable one. He wondered if there could have been a better stranger to meet here - at least one who loved his wolf might be able to show him some benefits, because frankly, Owen couldn't see many right now.

Turning his mind back to the current situation, Owen wondered what Sollux wanted to do tonight. He had offered a lift almost unthinkingly, just willing to help out this man who seemed to know so much about this new world where Owen knew little and the added bonus of company. Thinking now, he wondered whether the man would want to continue driving tonight or wait until tomorrow. If they were driving tonight, sleeping arrangements would obviously be in the pickup or outside if the wolf in Sollux preferred. If they were staying in Tomahawk the night, Owen wondered if he should rent out a hotel room, if there was a hotel in this town or just sleep in the pickup as planned. He briefly, very briefly considered... changing and sleeping outside with Sollux, but rejected the idea quickly. He didn't want to encourage the wolf in him any further, not until he knew some more about... things.

"So... Sollux." he began, smiling openly to invite suggestions. "What are your plans for the night? Are we heading in to Glendon or staying here?"
He was traveling alone.

And he wasn't stopping for anything.

More than a head start was had on both Sollux and Owen's little travels. Certainly closer to Glendon than Zack was going to be for sometime now. But it was probably best he did not run into them for quite some time. There was only one person who he really needed to see. Most people would not even call the one he planned to call on human if they had known the truth. For days, even months, the woods had given the beast a home. Running through the wilderness with the swiftness of the animals who also called it their home when he chose to stay away from the cities. It had been weeks since he entered into Canada, moving on foot and paw heading toward a single destination. The town where all the little monsters had started to gather one by one. During the journey he had kept a rather low profile unless a certain oppertunity for revenge arose.

But now he wasn't even trying to hide his approach to Glendon.

Circling the town last night purposefully, this morning he started to enter it from up wind. Before even reaching the outskirts of town the scent would have preceded him to the noses of those with heightened senses. It smelled like the old him, sure, but that wasn't the only message carried by the morning breeze. A story came with it, one of plain brutal savagery. Bloodbath. Figuratively and quite literally, since the stench of blood and death on those clothes was so thick it nearly masked his own scent. So much blood spilled from half a decade of nothing but revenge and grief.

Warning them all worth warning that he was coming to town just through scent alone. Something was coming into their little town that had seen death just much as it had brought it about. A chance to get ready to leave or get ready to fight, if they were bold enough. But most of them would at least get out of his way, if they were smart enough to recognize a beast who didn't care why they got in his way.

By the time he had stepped onto the first street, his scent likely preceded him all the way to the park. And it was that first step into town that anyone up early enough would get a glance at the new stranger that had just wandered into town. For one reason or another, he had chosen the form of a man. Though it did not serve as some wolf in sheep's clothing trick, unless he wanted to appear as the black sheep. Barefoot, the use of shoes had grown pointless some time ago. Clothes that had once been of fine quality were now just a few degrees of being glorified rags, torn from battle or as some members of the town might guess. . . transformation. Stubble coarsened a face which had once been a handsome youth, now turned more rugged as an eye patch kept one eye hidden from view.

Vagrant, from the looks of it.

Walking down the street with a gait that told the keen observer he was searching for something, he proceeded down it for a few blocks then turned off the regular street. Off the paved path he went for about eight or ten minutes before arriving at a certain house. After such a long journey, the figure who reeked of grief and gore stood right outside the door. Inside was, to the humans of Glendon, just a normal woman. For all the weres, she was their alpha that called the shots in this little sanctuary hidden in the Great White North. But for him. . . she was the last living connection to the lost love that had been his mate.

He knocked three times and waited silently, with his lone eye on the door.
Daniel was in the middle of trying to pretend like he hadn't noticed other people entering the park. Using a stick to poke around at some dirt and attempting to rely on his other senses. Scent and stinks and whatever other weird stuff Sara liked to drone on about. Daniel was aware that the mother and her son were wolves too. They smelled different! Nothing like his mommy and all the other normal people.

When the boy approached and said hello, Daniel was glancing off towards Grace. He wasn't -afraid- he was just... kind of shy! It was the first time he had ever met another boy like himself.

"Hullo." he said at first. Somehow his bravery must have caught up with him. "I'm Daniel. ....Does your mom have another ball in her shirt?" She was so round!

Grace smacked a hand over her face, trying not to laugh again. Perhaps Sara had been so concerned with teaching the ways of wolf kind, she had neglected to mention the birds and the bees. She cast an apologetic grin over to Donna, sliding over on her bench to make room.

"You must be new in town? Hmm, Donna if I make assumptions..." Sara had returned last evening to pitch a fit about the woman. Grace could probably point the women and her son out in a police line up if she had to.

"My name is Grace, and that is Daniel. He likes to ask questions, so prepare yourself." In fact, none of Grace's neices and nephews and cousins ever asked as many questions as Daniel liked to. She was sure she'd need a dictionary at this rate.

- - - - - -

The door of Grace and Sara's home swung open. A hand immediately jutting out to snatch the man by the collar of his shirt and drag him inside. The door slammed.

Sara looked both surprised and severely pissed off. Granted, Sara almost always looked pissed off. But at the moment she was so livid that she wasn't even speaking. Nor screaming. She was simply staring, seething, trying to formulate her fury in to words.

"Are you STUPID?"

It wasn't quite the most eloquent way to start off a lecture. Sara was more than tempted to just lay in to him with claws and teeth. Rip him to pieces and fling his remains out in to the forest for lesser dogs to maul. But... this man was the last one to see her sister. The last one that saw Natasha alive. For her sisters memory, she wouldn't kill her sisters lover.

But he was still stupid.

"You reek of blood. Did you run in to town looking like this? There are still humans here! You could have been followed so easily, charging in here like some chum-bucket fishing for sharks! I didn't bust ass to find us this place just for one cocksucker to blow it!"

From the looks of her pacing, that wasn't all Sara wanted to say. Finally, she stopped in the middle of the living room and crossed her arms. Facing him with that superior look that came so natural to her.

"So what? You have a GOOD reason for tearing in to town without common sense. Let me hear it."
Coco stood at the edge of the park, watching the exchange between the two groups already there. Instantly, she felt awkward and a little homesick. There was something intimate about the way that the son and his mother stood with one another and the casual air surrounding them that she wished she could be a part of instead of standing at the sidelines and watching.

She was unnoticed, however, it seemed by everyone there. She wished that she could meld into the bushes and just watch the scene before her and wonder about how it might be to have such a funny, laughing mother. The two boys present were adorable and Coco couldn't help but smile at them from her position. She did, however, feel a little creepy watching this.

After a moment of consideration, she slid from her spot in the direction of a park bench, thinking that maybe it would feel less creepy to her if she was at least in plain sight.
It was probably beyond stupid for him to have entered town the way he had. But at this point he had not cared. Nothing really mattered to him anymore. Some smart ass bone in his body wanted to say he walked into town like this, not ran. However he held that inside and some immature part of his brain that could still actually laugh. . . chuckled. Noel was probably responsible for that. Plus being 'cute' at that moment would not have helped a single thing right now and he knew that. Out of just about anyone in this town, or the country, and maybe even the world only she got any respect from him for who she was related to and what she had made of herself. Plus Saraliya DID have a right to be pissed right now. . . given all the hard work put into getting this place together.

And he probably nearly had blown it.

Well you sure haven't changed. . .

Jason looked his former packmate right in the eye with the only one he had showing right now. The other was still covered by that damned eye patch for some reason. He wasn't scared to look her in the eye, maybe because they'd practically grown up together. Perhaps she was one of the few people left he still might call family. If anything she was lucky he hadn't come to town in wolf form and scared people even more. So there was at least just a tiny bit of common sense in his choice of action. At this point the humans probably thought he was just some homeless drifter who'd wandered into town.

"There's only two of them left. The people that took Natasha from us. I've killed all the rest of them that attacked us in Raymond that day. I just wanted you to know."

It wasn't until he'd spoken out loud that other aspects about him might have sunk in with the current alpha. Getting beyond the smell and having a better look at him, not to mention the way he sounded would tell a lot about his current state. Even his posture gave it away. Right now he was tired. Weary even. One might even question as to how much he had slept over the past five years. But at the same time he seemed different in another way. . . wilder. More dangerous than she had likely allowed herself to believe in the past.

Though it was certainly doubtful he would get any sort of pity from Saraliya. At most it seemed there was only mercy for having been the last to see her deceased sister. But buried under the emotion of grief in his voice there was some sort of bitter satisfaction that he was so close to completing his vow to Natasha.

The kind that knew even if he succeeded. . . it still wouldn't bring her back.

"After we left that place... do you think we've got any right to value our lives? Not unless we hold the same value for another. I don't remember thinking about that while we were escaping." Zack said plainly in response to Alex's concern. "There's always a grey area in life, but this is black and white. You take a life, you should loose a life. You can take many lives, but only die once. One tends to realize it's just a matter of time." A steady stream of smoke crept from his nostrils, and out the window at that, and was followed by his cigarette butt tumbling end over end as it was tossed out.

Slowly the truck pulled into a a clearing littered with gravel, and broken cars. A small shack was standing in the center of it, with tin walls, and a makeshift roof, with a old trail leading off into the woods behind it. "We're here." Zack said softly, and opened the door. As he shut the door, he turned to Alex, and flicked a finger towards him, indicating he wanted him to stay in the truck. Resting a hand around the handle of the large silver hunting knife that hung sheathed at his side, Zack turned, and began towards the shack, but steadily began veering off towards the woods.

Pausing a moment, he ran a hand through his thick hair, and sniffed deeply. Zack then closed his eyes, and began sniffing at the air rapidly. Lowering his head, he concentrated, and found what he was looking for. "Daven..." he murmured, and turned around.

"So... you ain't dead yet. You're... lookin' like a hippy these days." A gruff voice echoed from a lone figure dressed in army fatigues who had walked from the woods edge near the truck "Drove straight up to the place and all... still as cocky as ever."

Turning around, Zack flicked his head lightly to toss the hair from his eyes, so he could focus on the man. "It's easier this way. Save me the trouble of having to track you through the woods... which I thought I'd have to. You're n-" his words were cut off, as the man dashed towards him, his clothes tearing into shreds as his form instantly changed to that of a Werewolf.

A quite smile spread across his face, as Zack drew his silver knife, and charged Daven himself, cocking his arm back, knife gripped firmly.

They collided with one another, knife slicing cleanly through the air, Daven's jaws clamping firmly over Zack's shoulder.

"Argh!" Zack groaned, and dropped his knife, looking directly at Daven's yellow eyes, which were accompanied with a grin between clenched teeth.

"Slowing down, boy... gettin' soft from the run." The muffled words echoed before Daven's jaws let go, and raised to bite down on Zack's head, as he picked him up, and slammed him to the ground. "Thought you could start back up, killin us off again? Listen pup, you ain't gonna change the world... and don't you worry bout the girl, and the kid... we're go-" Daven's words were cut off as a sharp pain pierced his stomach.

Zack had transformed, and tore into the man's abdomen with the mouth that had opened from his torso. The sound of crunching bone, and tearing flesh silenced Daven's words, Blood washed over him, and with a heavy kick, Zack sent the man flying backwards into large tree with a wet thwack!. Slowly he stood up, his midnight black fur slick with gore, and his green eyes almost glowing. Steam sped from his mouth as he spat on the ground, and reached for his knife. The mouth along his torso slowly closed, and then his form returned to human. "You... are the history... that will be forgotten." Zack said with a heavy breath, and grabbed the torn jeans that hung at his sides with a hand to hold them up, his other hand sheathing the knife after picking it up. Looking at the corpse laying yards away, Zack turned and began walking back to the truck where he saw Alex standing off the the side... he'd been intent to follow.

Narrowing his eyes, Zack looked straight at Alex, and motioned to the truck, "Get back inside... we're leaving."

He nodded, must be nice to have a vehicle and be able to travel and carry suplies. All Sollux had was a bag resting against the leg of his chair and the strap was pitted and torn from being held between canine teeth.

The plan, go to Glendon and bust heads until someone can tell him where Rion or Donna is. If the former catch him off guard and get answers one way or another. The two had been far from friends ever sise they men but Sollux had held back from attacking Rion simply because he was Donna's brother.

"I was going to go another mile or two then rest and finish the journey when I woke up." he said finally pushing the mug away from himself to be refilled. "But now I could just drive there if you need sleep." he was glad that he wouldn't have to sleep in the wilderness. He'd have been forced to shift to keep warm and it was dangerous to remain in were form unless it was night and you were on the move.
"Good idea," said Owen, coming around to the other man's point of view. The quicker they got there the better. Ideally, he would have liked to get into Glendon tonight, but tomorrow they would be fresh and it would only be a short drive in. Owen shook his head at Sollux's offer of letting him sleep.

"S'all right, mate, something tells me I'm not gonna sleep much tonight anyway." Owen was pretty positive that the anticipation of getting to Glendon, plus the fear of being immersed in an unknown world, plus being in the presence of a stranger who could shift into a wolf at will... though he trusted Sollux, he was pretty sure he'd drive. After all, it was quite late now, so if he did decide to catch some zs, he could take the man up on his offer.

The Irishman pondered ordering some more sandwiches. He wasn't particularly hungry, but it was something to do. He wondered how quickly Sollux wanted to leave - probably soon if he wanted to cover a few miles. Owen cast his mind back to the dial on the truck. Yeah, they'd have enough fuel for a while yet. Then, he couldn't find anything average to worry about.

Just the fact he wasn't human. That was all he could think. Meeting Sollux had dampened down the fear and anger because the man was clearly comfortable in his skin - both of them. He was surviving successfully, he even had something in Glendon to get back to, family or friends perhaps. Or enemies, the pessimistic part of Owen's mind told him. Nevertheless, the man had a full life - he was sure that, for Sollux, being a wolf some of the time opened more doors than it closed. He hoped he could get some of that comfort, some of that security about himself. Suddenly the song 'Naive' by The Kooks came into his head and his fingers itched for his guitar, stashed carefully in the back of the pickup cab. He hummed it softly.

Of course he was being naive. What were the chances of Sollux sticking with him once he got back to old friends, family, enemies or whatever he was looking for in Glendon. Owen was about 98% sure that if he was offered his old life, minus wolf-shifting, he would grab at it with hands, feet, teeth, whatever, and drop the other wolf without a thought. It was a sudden spike of loyalty to the other man that stopped him saying 100%. But he ached for his old life, so much... his Mum and Dad, his bandmates Dom and Jamie, his girl... Anna. He swore his heart hurt when he thought of her. He hadn't told anyone - not that he'd met anyone to tell - that he only kept his mobile to see her name pop up on the screen when she called. She had rung him less and less though, and the sensible part of him hoped she was moving on. The heartbroken part of him wished - so badly - that he had bought her with him. But he tried, as much as possible, to believe the sensible part of him and was trying to move on himself.

The fact that he still had his phone probably didn't bode well for the whole 'moving on' thing.

Unwilling to think any further, Owen dragged himself back to the present. Cafe. Canada. Glendon. Sollux. Right, ok. Owen looked up at the other man, trying to remember the conversation they had been having, though it seemed a long, long while since either of them had spoken. Finally he remembered.

"So what time d'you wanna head off?"
he asked, trying to sound a little cheerier than he felt. Perhaps he should chuck the phone away. Ordinarily, when he was in this mood, he would play a coupla songs on his guitar and reminisce. With a visitor, he couldn't really do that, but at the same time, he was glad. He figured that talking with Sollux, finding out about the world he was about to enter would be a lot more useful.
Sollux stood and hefted his bag by it's good strap before changing his mind and leaning it against Owen's chair. "Look after that for me, theres something I need to do. I'll meet you outside in ten minuets."

He had enough of an impression of Owen to trust him with what amounted to a bag of dirty laundry. The last of him money was on the counter to pay for his meal, and well if Owen did make off Sollux knew where he's be able to find him.

The stepped through the door into the still chilly air and headed around the back away from the road. It was still cold enough for his breath to be visible in front of him as he walked into a stand of trees. There was enough concealment for him to pull of his shirt and pants before his body changed to that of a large black wolf every bit as bulky and intimidating as he was in human form.

He sat his ears pricked for any sound he waited making sure he was alone. He had done this every day for the past half year and would continue to until his journey was over, he hoped this was the last time.

Satisfied he was alone he lifted his head and let out a low howl, slow and mournful followed immediately by another then another. Twenty three in all before he stopped, each one counted and each with another face in mind, then alter three long, deep breathes he howled twice more before he was done. Twenty three dead, two missing.

He hung his head sniffing at the ground beneath him, before his fur receded and he was human again quickly pulling his clothes back on before heading down to the parting lot.
Blood rushed into his mouth as he bit through the throat, flooding his palette with the heady flavor of warm life. Gurgling mumbles, too disjointed for words, followed from somewhere beyond him, the beyond where even the throat of the soul he'd released was sundered. Tearing shreds of flesh from the still twitching body, he lifted his clawed hands to the sky, looked to the sky and howled. Turning back to his meal, body already losing tufts of fur as it reverted in death. He was so hungry, drunk of conquest and the richness of the first and final bite. Lowering his maw he opened his mouth and bit into the steaming-

"Chilisteak special, easy on the sauce and heavy on the beans, order o' coleslaw!"

-burger sizzling on the grill, red as blood still. Standing over it, human jaw lost beneath a whitening beard, Basha blinked away the past and tried to handle the present. Something about the way the meat sizzled, the way it bled juices as he gently had pressed it. Maybe cooking hadn't been the best career choice. Quickly scooping up the burger and flipping it, he stepped back from the grill and appeared briefly at the counter.

"Chilisteak light with Extra Border and a side of Slaw, coming up!"

Cooks had another language, applicable to no two restaurants. In a way, each was their very own culture and government. Perhaps it was the structure Basha liked, a sense of self in an otherwise disorganized madness. Perhaps that's why the Council seemed so appealing, why Alpha seemed so appealing. When he knew his place, he knew how to act.

No matter how far he loped from his past, he was still as much the simple minded wolf he used to be.

Although perhaps a bit grayer.

Ladling beans onto the sandwich, now more a sloppy mess than anything one might pick up, Basha set it up on the counter and dinged the little bell. It wasn't glorified work, but there was a certain pride in knowing people were appreciative of what one did, what one made. His relapses had been growing shorter and more infrequent of late, the one today the first in nearly a month. Perhaps the Wolf was settling down, finally resting its eyes in preparation of that long sleep, that eternal sleep.

Personally, he wouldn't mind.

There was no need for savagery here.

The bell rang as another customer walked into Elkhead and in that instant, his musings were swept away. He had hungry customers, after all, and there was no time to dwell on what was.