Chapter Two

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Thanksgiving dinner was held at the pack house every year. My mom has been in charge of making sure dinner is prepared for as long as I can remember. Those few days before the holiday, the pack house is crowded and buzzing with activity.

It's mostly Omegas who prepare the feast and decorate the house. Not because we're treated differently or forced to, but because unsurprisingly that's who volunteers. Doing these kind of things give Omegas the satisfaction of doing for their pack. We're opposed to violence and conflict, leaving border patrol and really anything that involves fighting or muscle for other pack members.

The day before Thanksgiving, mom doesn't come home until early morning to make sure everyone is dressed appropriately. She usually sends Calvin back up to his room to change. My older brother's idea of casual formal, is worn jeans and flannel shirts. Which is pretty much what he wears everyday. I once heard mom praying to the Goddess to bless him with a Mate who would pick out his clothes for him. By now I'm sure she's just praying for a Mate in general.

Calvin's twenty three now and after five years and no Mate, he's kind of given up. He's a loner and unlike me, he chooses to be. Calvin could have moved into the pack house like most unmated wolves, but he chose to stay home. Even if mom has the tendency to nag. His reasoning was because it's quiet.

I know if I don't find my mate, I'll probably stay home too. Not because I don't like being around others but because others don't like being around me.

Mom stood by the door, dusting off dad's shirt and tapping her foot impatiently. She was dressed in a emerald green dress that fell just below her knees and her hair was down in soft red waves. Her face had turned a bright crimson when dad said she looked beautiful. Instead of thanking him, she slapped his arm and fixed his collar. Mom's a naturally beautiful female but it's rare to see her dressed up. Most of the time she's in her chef uniform with her hair in a messy bun.

Calvin's heavy footsteps could be heard coming down the stairs before he appeared at the bottom in khaki slacks and a ironed button down. Mom had prepared this year, already having the outfit laid out for him. He looked uncomfortable and wore a frown under his full beard. I was a little jealous of that, I couldn't even get a single hair to grow on my chin.

"See, now you're presentable. Let's go!" Mom said, rushing us out.

"I look like a Mormon." Calvin grumbled as he slid in the backseat with me. I snickered even though he didn't. He looked like every other higher ranking wolf who was twice my size in muscle.

Self consciously, I looked down at myself and pulled on my navy sweater. I got away with wearing my converse this year but only because mom doesn't really care what I wear. Something usually ends up spilled on me by the end of the night.

"Wait!" I yelled out, making mom curse as she jumped in the front seat. "I forgot my apple pie." I really didn't mean to.

"Don't scare me like that, I thought it was something important." Mom sighed.

"But—"

"Sweetie, there'll be plenty of pie there." Mom said before telling dad how many beers he could have.

I pouted in the backseat, looking out the window. I've made an apple pie every year since I was twelve. I always had the kitchen to myself with mom at the pack house and everything was quiet. Every year I'd bring my pie and sit it among the many and every year it'd be the first one Jesper Killian would take a slice of. How could I have forgotten it?

Dad had to park the SUV on the side of the street with the many other cars. We were all used to such a big gathering, seeing as there was the monthly pack meet. The crowd just seemed bigger on holidays and sometimes it was. I wondered if the Alpha invited anyone this year. Last year he'd invited another Alpha family whose young pup played with knives. He was a little strange.

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