The fading sunlight illuminated the meadow, sending splashes of pink, purple, and orange in all directions, igniting shadows that danced with the grass. Wisps of vibrant clouds dusted the majestic sky like chalk on a chalkboard and the sun hung magnificently above the horizon. Robins swooped low on unfortunate crickets that had come to begin their evening choir, consisting of a repertoire of chirps. All the while, small creatures scurried to their homes as a response to the coming of the night.
My soft paws stroked the nutrient-rich soil as I crept through the lofty sedge, all my senses vigilant. I stood for a moment and listened silently, my tail twitching impatiently. It was all quiet, except for the tweeting of the birds and the chirping of the crickets. SNAP! My ears jerked up as a twig snapped in the distance, towards my left. I could almost hear his silent gasp as he realised his mistake. I took this as a chance to seize victory and sprinted in the direction of the sound. I could pick the faint rustle of grass up ahead as he dashed to find a new hiding spot. My paws slowed down to a trot as I lost track of my victim. It had happened again! I just stood there, dazed, trying to focus my senses on my surroundings.
“Gotcha!” He exclaimed as he leapt from behind, pinning me to the moist soil.
“Asher! I was supposed to do that!” I remarked, trying to get out of my brother’s strong grip.
“Well, you weren’t aware of your surroundings again,” he teased as he released me.
Darkness had spread its wings across the sky, sparking the minuscule stars which erupted their light over the dark blanket. Owls watchfully perched on the pines, waiting for vulnerable prey to pass. Asher and I strolled back into the forest, towards our pack. We passed the scattered scouts and trotted into the cave. I could hear my rhythmic breathing as my body relaxed into a deep slumber.
PIT! PAT! My ears twitched at the sound of soft footsteps moving out of the cave. My drowsy eyes flapped open to reveal the retreating form of Asher. I crept behind, staying in the shadows as the Sun’s rays had streaked over the horizon. He eventually came to a rocky ledge that overlooked the meadow and steadily sat down so that he was facing away.
“Asher? You alright?” I whispered as I sat next to him.
There was a long, awkward pause.
“I’m leaving,” he sternly stated.
“I’m leaving the pack.”
“I’m tired of following Titus’s orders all the time!” He growled.
I was taken aback by his unusual behaviour. “Asher, what happened to you?! You’re the next Alpha. You can’t leave!” I urged.
“Go away, Rae! I don’t feel like talking to you!” He snarled as he hopped off the ledge and sprinted through the meadow.
“Asher, no!” I darted after him.
There was a slight rustle towards our left. My senses detected that something was wrong and Asher didn’t seem to notice. BANG! At that moment, the world around me transformed into the lens of a camera, with only Asher in focus. A familiar scene lingered in the back of my head. Asher was thrown to the dirt where he struggled to wrestle the beast that was shot into him.
“Asher!” I screamed as I ran towards him.
His beautiful coat of dark chocolate was soaked in blood and he lay there, tired. I nuzzled my head against his. “I’ll go get help!”
The man with jet-black hair aimed at me, barely missing my ear, making me retreat into the forest to warn Titus.
Titus and the rest of the pack sprinted behind me as I led them to where Asher was. I briefly paused, perplexed at the scene before me. Where Asher’s body was, was replaced by a pool of blood.
“Where’s Asher?” Titus demanded.
“He w-was right here, I don’t think he had the strength to move.” I worriedly replied.
Titus’s ears perked up and his nose twitched as he inspected for danger. His gaze scanned me for evidence until it landed on my face. Half of the pearl coat on my face was soaked in Asher’s blood.
“You ate him, didn’t you?” Titus questioned.
The others all agreed.
“N-no I wouldn’t do that, father!” I whimpered.
“Rae, it’s alright just tell us the tr—”
Tears were uncontrollably spilling out of my eyes as I ran deeper into the meadow.
“Rae, get back here at once!” Titus boomed.
It was disrespectful to run away when the alpha was speaking but I just couldn’t control myself. Asher why did you do this? After all we’d been through together. I made my way into the other forest, opposite where I’d lived, and curled up under a tree, letting my emotions overcome me. Today’s unexpected turn of events had sparked a devastating event in the past. Why? Why does everyone have to leave me? SNAP! My ears perked up in the direction of the sound. I could just make out a limping figure in the distance, through my teary vision, heading towards me. As he neared, I could glimpse the dazzling emerald eyes and the dark chocolate-brown coat that was so familiar.