#Chapter 133: The Power of Claiming
I spent the next week drowning myself in nothing but hockey in a feeble attempt to keep Nina off of my mind. Fio was furious with me and would hardly speak to me, often spending his days being dormant ever since Nina and I last had sex.
Did I make a grave mistake by pushing Nina away? Her scent was so similar to my mate’s, and it was just as
tantalizing despite being much more faint than what I smelled on the scarf. When we had sex, I remembered that her scent came across a little stronger, and I knew that Fio was intrigued by it. Already, I had lost control around her so many times, just from that tiny bit of scent coming from her But at the same time, I couldn’t take the risk of letting her or her family get hurt. I had to go through with this arranged marriage for everyone’s benefit, and although it broke my heart in a million different ways to say goodbye to her, it simply had to be done.
The final match in the Half-Moon Tournament was set for Saturday. I began to hear rumors that Ronan’s team came to stay in the motel in town, and would be coming to the campus more and more in preparation for the game. My father also informed me that Ronan’s team would be entirely composed of werewolves, which meant that my team would have to be entirely composed of werewolves as well.
On the Monday before the match, my father called me to a meeting. I met him in the VIP box in the arena, and when I entered, he was sitting in a chair looking out over the rink.
“You’re late,” he said, checking his watch without so much as turning around.
“Sorry,” I replied. “I was busy”
“Not busy with that girl, I presume?” he asked. His tone was somewhat mocking, but also deeply serious.
I shook my head and plopped down into the chair next to him as I tried to shove the feeling of dread that came up at the mention of Nina back down into the depths of my stomach. “Nope. I’m still keeping up my end of the bargain, so long as you’re keeping up yours.”
My father didn’t say anything for a few moments. We watched together in silence as the Zamboni driver went back and forth in the rink, prepping the ice for the upcoming practice match that we would be having in a couple of days. I always liked watching that thing go around the rink, it was almost mesmerizing, and it meant that the ice was fresh and slick, perfect for skating.
“I’ve picked out your new team,” he finally said breaking my trance. “All werewolves, of course They’re tough and strong, just what you need. They should be arriving tomorrow morning.”
I frowned. “Are they experienced in hockey at all?”
My father shrugged. “It doesn’t really matter, does it?” he said, skirting my question. “Ronan’s team isn’t particularly experienced, either. Besides, it’ll really only be between the
two of you, anyway.”
I scoffed. “Do you know that his team isn’t experienced, or is that what they told you?”
He went silent for a moment, pursing his lips, before he responded. “You’re not seriously trying to tell me that you want to keep your human team, are you?” he asked incredulously.
“We’ve made it this far,” I replied. “My team is really good. Superhuman strength and speed doesn’t mean jack shit if they don’t know anything about hockey”
Suddenly, as though my words offended him, my father stood and buttoned his suit jacket. “Well, you have no choice in the matter,” he said. “Unless you plan on somehow turning all of them yourself, which you don’t have the ability to do as far as I’m aware, you’re stuck with this new team.
The rules state–”
“I remember the rules, dad,” I interrupted with an exasperated sigh. ” I’ll see you on Saturday.”
That night, I called my team my real team, not my new, shitty werewolf team to the locker rooms for a meeting to explain the situation and see if we could come up with some sort of plan to play together in the final game.
Everyone tell silent when I asked if they
had any ideas.
I sighed, accepting the fact that I would be stuck with this new werewolf team. But then, a hand shot up. It was Matt.
“Hey, Enzo?” he said tentatively.
I looked up at him, hoping that he had something useful to contribute. At this point, I was willing to take any suggestions.
“Yeah, Matt?” I asked.
“I know I should’ve said something earlier, but I didn’t know what to do…. So here goes: I’ve been having these dreams lately,” he said, hesitating for a moment. “About a wolf.”
I raised an eyebrow, intrigued but also wondering what exactly he was getting at. My mind began to race with a million different things. Did Matt somehow take the Mad Wolf serum? I thought that it was Edward who was administering it all along, but I supposed that it wasn’t entirely impossible. “A wolf, huh?” I said. ” What kind of dreams?”
Matt shrugged. “I don’t know. They’re just…weird. But it’s not just the dreams. I’ve been feeling different, I guess. Like I have all this energy, and I can run faster and jump higher than before”
My eyes widened. I thought back to how well he’d been performing lately during our matches, and it lined up with what he was saying. “Are you saying what I think you’re saying?” I asked.
Matt nodded slowly. “I think I might be a werewolf.”
The rest of the team erupted in a collective gasp. I heard some murmuring amongst them, but I raised my hand to quiet them so I could listen
to what Matt had to say
I leaned forward, eager to hear more When did this start?” I asked. “You didn’t get bitten, did you? Or did you take some sort of strange serum?”
Matt shook his head. “No. I never got bitten, and I wouldn’t take something like that.” He then thought for a
moment, biting his lip, before his eyes lit up and he spoke again. “Actually, it all started when Nina was bandaging up my hand that one day after practice, ” he said. I cringed at the thought of how abrasive I’d been that day, but he didn’t seem fazed, and he kept talking before I could apologize for how I acted in front of him. That day was the first day that Nina’s strangely tempting scent nearly sent me into a full-on rage.
“I went to the infirmary,” he
continued, “but when Tiffany looked at it, my hand was totally healed. I didn’t think much of it — maybe it was just not as bad of an injury as I thought- but then, that night, I started having the dreams. After that, I felt so powerful. And, well… You’ve seen my performance lately.”
I felt a shock go through me at the mention of Nina’s name. Nina was a werewolf, I knew that much, but was it possible that she also had the power of Claiming? Could she turn humans into werewolves with just a touch?