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It's Just a job I do

please don't steal them... 

Meetings are dull and conference rooms don’t give you much to look at.  I didn’t know when I agreed to this job that I would be standing behind the Powers that Be as they discussed succession, my father was known for his work with succession, but me, well I’m not that subtle.  I find myself staring at the table that is shaped like a kidney and letting my attention slip from the task at hand.  At least the table has an interesting shape, nothing else in the room is interesting, the walls are white with no windows and around the table are gray office chairs.  I am also not paying attention so when the Power who paid me turns to me and asks a question I have the ask him to repeat himself. 

 

“I asked if you had ever had any experience with this sort of thing?”

 

“No.”

 

“Your father was gifted in these matters.”

 

“I am not my father.”

 

“No.  Our children are never quite what we expect,” he says with a smile, “Now we let in the ones that may replace us.”

 

I open the door to the waiting room, I am not surprised to see Dirk and the female I had wounded sitting out there.  Sitting with them are a couple that I don’t recognize, he has the obvious strength of a man who works hard at some job that requires much strength, the girl with him is a lovely red head.  Lastly I see Kevin.  I know I shouldn’t be surprised after what I’ve seen since we’ve been in town, but it is still a bit of a shock to really see him there.   I am careful not to let my surprise show, I’m not going to let the others see any weakness.

  

“You may enter now,” I say stepping back to let them through. After they enter I shut the door and take my position behind the Power that talks to me.  I want to go back to LaLa land, but the appearance of Kevin has piqued my interest.  So now I have to listen.

 

“Father,” Kevin says inclining his head to the Power who always speaks to me. 

 

“Kevin, welcome home.”

 

“This was a silly ruse,” Kevin says half heartedly.

 

“If I just asked, would you have come?”

 

“No,” Kevin says looking at me.

 

“Well then,” the Power says, “silly worked didn’t it?”

 

“Yes, I suppose it did,” Kevin admits with a small smile, “We need to introduce our selves.”

 

“Why?” Dirk asks, “We all know each other.”

 

“Lola doesn’t,” Kevin says quietly, all eyes turn to me and then I hear a snort.

 

“Why would she need to know?” Erin asks. 

 

“Because they are mated, I thought you would have guessed,” Dirk sneers to Erin.

 

“Oh,” Erin says quietly, then in a much louder voice, “Is that why you came after me?”

 

“No,” I say in a voice that I hope is emotionless, “You were chasing a human.  That is against the Laws.”

 

“The Laws are old and outdated!”

 

“No some are not,” I don’t like her not one little bit. 

 

“This isn’t what we are here to discuss,” says the strong one, “My name is Olaf and this is Amanda.  The rude ones are Dirk and Erin.”

 

“We’ve met,” I say with a smile. 

 

“That makes sense,” he says with something like a shrug, “Right then, the Alphas are, he gestures to the two that have mostly done the talking, “the O’Connell’s, I assume you’ve met them as they are Kevin’s parents,” I nod, as if I knew that before today, “those there are Dirk’s parents, the Cartwright’s” he jabs a thumb at one of the Alpha couples, and then the other, “The Thatcher’s are Erin’s parents.”

 

“Olaf and Amanda are here because they were chosen by the rest of the population, as is our way here,” this was Mr. O’Connell speaking, “You have until the next fool moon to resolve the order of your hierarchy.  You may all go now.” He turns to me, “Even you, my daughter.”

 

I notice Erin’s glare and then nod to Mr. O’Connell and then to the other Powers that Be.  I am the last to leave the room and by the time I get out into the antechamber Kevin is the only one there.  He seems a little nervous.

 

“You aren’t angry about my parents, are you?” He asks gently.

 

“No.  You haven’t met my family,” I shrug and smile.  It seems to put him at ease. 

 

“Next time you should where your cloak and broad sword.  You look so impressive in them.”

 

“I don’t have them to impress the likes of Dirk!”

 

“I know you don’t,” he says putting an arm around me, “but when we all fight you should, it’ll scare the piss out of them.”

 

“What do you mean, fight?” 

 

“We have to fight the others.”

 

“Why?” 

 

“Because that is how these things are done.  And if we don’t fight then Dirk and Erin will end up governing.”

 

“I thought you ruled as a group?”

 

“Well – yes, but the one that wins the fights sets the rules of the city.”

 

“And is the one that sets the rules now, is it your father?”

 

“I don’t think so,” Kevin says slowly, “the Alpha’s don’t talk about it.”

 

“So what you are saying is that we are staying here.”

 

“I thought you wanted that?” he asks.

 

“For awhile, but not necessarily forever.  I’m not Alpha material.”

 

“Of course you are!” he seems shocked that I would think I wasn’t, “But we wont have to stay forever, just until everything is settled.  Then we leave when we feel like it.” 

 

 

 

When we get home Kevin sits down on the couch and flips on the TV, he hasn’t even looked at me since we left the office.  He seems, well, sulky.  I take his hand in mine, Kevin never sulks and it seems strange.

 

“You alright?” I ask.

 

“Fine.”

 

“If you are fine, why aren’t you looking at me?”

 

“I don’t want to do this,” he says turning to me, “You’re going to get mad because I never told you any of this.  And I know you hate to fight for no reason.  And now we’re going to fight.  I just don’t want to do that.”

 

“I’m not mad at you.”

 

“You weren’t?” He says in a completely disbelieving tone.

 

“No.  I don’t think this is a time to fight between us.”

 

“Really?” he asks slowly.

 

“Yeah,” I say taking his hand, “this is a time to teach you how to survive in a fight.”

 

“You can’t.  The rules are we go into this fight with the skills we have now.”

 

“You are kidding right?” I ask incredulously.

 

“Why would I make a joke about that?” he asks turning away from me again. 

 

“I don’t know,” now I’m worried.  I have no idea how Kevin will handle himself in a fight.  Not once in all the time we’ve been together has Kevin had to fight.  Maybe it was a mistake not to let him into the world I work in.

 

“I’ll do fine,” he says with a smile, “and if I don’t then we just leave faster than I had anticipated.”

 

“But you could be killed!” Look I don’t know much about the way things happen to guarantee succession.  I haven’t lived in the same place long enough to know, plus I think each city may have its own rules.   But I’m not sure.  I could call on Father, he’d know, he did this sort of thing for a living.

 

“I won’t be killed.  The worst that will happen is banishment.”

 

I know for most Wolves banishment would be worse than death, but I guess time wandering with me has changed Kevin’s mind about that.  I still don’t want him hurt though, “Will you take a few pointers?”

 

“No, most definitely not, I’ll see to it that I’m matched against Dirk first,” an image of Dirk comes to mind.  He doesn’t look like he’s fought any more than Kevin has, but I’ve learned that looks can be deceiving. 

 

“I’m sure he’s been training.”

 

“I’m sure,” Kevin replies in a lazy voice, “as have I, in my own way,” he reaches over and pulls the ring his father had given me from my finger.  He closes his hand around it with a look of concentration and then opens his unscathed hand, “That should catch him off guard,” he says placing the ring back in my hand with a smile, “Oh and I just love the scar you gave Erin.  I’m surprised she let herself been seen that way.”

 

“I didn’t notice,” I really didn’t.  But I hadn’t looked for it either, “It must be small.”

 

“It is.  But she hates not being perfect.”