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The War Between the Pacts, Book 4

The War Between the Pacts, Book 4

A Sweet Paranormal Young Adult Romance Series

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Welcome to Smoky Hills Academy

#1 in Football #1 in Wolf Shifters

Tensions escalate in Smoky Hills as the warring pack battles to see who the new alpha will be. 

  • Paranormal Romance
  • Wolf Shifter
  • Alpha
  • Contemporary
  • High School
  • Football
  • Fated Mates
  • Over Protective Hero
  • Forbidden Romance

Synopsis

Tensions escalate in Smoky Hills as the warring pack battles to see who the new alpha will be. 

Friends are pitted against each other and human's lives are at risk. 

Chapter One Look Inside

Grayson was gone. 

Cora was out of reach. 

My life sucked. 

I blew out my breath as I sat in the school parking lot with my engine running. 

Call me crazy, but getting out of my truck and heading into school did not sound like something I wanted to do. If anything, being surrounded by those four walls would just be a reminder of what I was missing and how crappy my life had become. 

Leaning forward, I rested my forehead on the steering wheel and closed my eyes. I’d spent most of the night running around Smoky Hills, trying to find Grayson. Trying to locate him to bring him back. 

But I couldn’t find him. 

Either he was very good at hiding his tracks, or he had completely vanished. 

Whatever had happened, I was determined to find him no matter the cost. 

After all, what else did I have to do? There was nothing for me in Smoky Hills. Nothing. 

There was a sharp knock on my window. I pulled myself to sitting as I glanced through the glass to see Noah and Evan standing outside. They both had concerned expressions as they peered in at me. 

Go away. I pushed the words into their minds as pain gripped my chest. 

What did any of this matter anymore? My life wasn’t coming together with a pretty little bow, and at this point, I was beginning to doubt that it ever would. 

The sound of someone pulling on my door handle drew my attention, and before I could engage the lock, Evan had the door open. He swung it wide, and both he and Noah filled the space so I couldn’t pull it shut on them. 

They folded their arms over their chests as they stared me down. 

“Get out,” Evan said. 

I stared at him as heat began to creep up under my collar. Even though the desire to dominate didn’t race through us quite yet, we were all creeping up to the age where that would be an issue. 

But sitting here with their stares irritating me, I was ready to let my wolf loose on them. There was no way I wanted the whole everything will get better routine. I wanted to wallow in my pain, and no one was going to take that from me. 

“Get out,” Evan said again, his voice growing deeper with anger. 

I growled and moved to shut the door. “Leave me alone,” I said as I glared at him. 

I knew it wasn’t the best way to deal with my problems, but what choice did I have? 

The warning bell sounded, and Evan and Noah glanced toward the school and then at each other. I could feel their frustration with me, but I didn’t care. I wasn’t going anywhere. Not with Cora in that school with Christopher. 

How was I going to handle seeing them together, especially when my best friend was MIA?

Yep, I was right. Smoky Hills Academy had nothing to offer me. 

“Whatever, man. Get in trouble,” Evan said as he moved away from the door at the same time Noah did. 

They slammed the door, and its thud rattled through me. I growled again and leaned my head back on the headrest and closed my eyes. 

I felt bad for treating my friends—my pack—like I had. It wasn’t their fault that everyone around me left. It was my responsibility to hold things together. To keep my pack in line. 

But right now, I was hanging on by one tiny, fraying piece of thread. Distancing myself from those in my life who I could hurt seemed to be my only choice. After all, they were better off without me. I’d prove that to them. 

The final bell rang, and the parking lot became a ghost town. When the last straggler rushed into the school, I scrubbed my face and glanced around. 

It was stupid, sitting in the parking lot, but I had nowhere else to go. Dad had eyes everywhere. If someone saw that I was skipping, he would find out. Besides, I was pretty sure he checked the school parking lot on his way to work every day. If my truck wasn’t here, I would have to field his questions as to where I’d gone. 

He and I weren’t exactly on speaking terms right now. Not after he decided that the last thing he wanted to do was challenge Uncle Brutus’s declaration. 

Giving the Mother pack the right to rule seemed like a stupid idea, but Dad didn’t care. He’d created a world here in Smoky Hills, and he naively thought that everyone would leave us alone. 

Which I knew was wrong. Grayson’s disappearance proved that. 

I scrubbed my face with my hands and tipped my head toward the school. It was first period, which meant Cora was in homeroom. Despite my better judgement, I leaned in and sorted through the sounds around me until I found what I was looking for. 

The trill of Cora’s heartbeat. It was steady and gentle. Just like her. 

I closed my eyes as I allowed its familiar cadence to wash over me. I was grateful for the peace it brought me. Right now, it was the only thing that was holding me together. Her existence was all the mattered. 

She was all that mattered—even if I couldn’t have her. 

My nerves began to calm as my muscles relaxed. Her heartbeat was like a lullaby softly singing me to sleep. 

And I would have, had it not been for the sudden ripple inside of me. One that told me someone was coming. 

And not just someone. A wolf. 

I pulled my head up and glanced around, my body pulsing on high alert. Could it be the wolf I saw with Cora? Or Oliver? I scanned the area around me, waiting for something, anything to come barreling into my world. 

And then I saw him. He looked no older than me as he strode through the woods in human form. 

My muscles tensed in anticipation as I reached over and gripped the door handle. I took in a few deep breaths as I watched and waited for what he was going to do. If he walked right past the high school, then I just might be able to let him go for now. But, if he made any movement toward the school, I would intervene. 

The guy moved fast and steady as he walked across the fields. Then, just before he came to the crossroads of either walking down the sidewalk toward the school or toward the road, he stopped. 

Blood was pumping through my veins as I glared at him, daring him to take a step toward the high school. Whoever he was and whatever he was doing here, I knew it couldn’t be good. 

And then he raised his gaze, meeting mine. 

He studied me for a moment before he smiled, nodded, and headed toward the school. 

That was the exact opposite reaction that I’d been anticipating, and before I could stop myself, I had the door open and was jumping down to the ground. 

I sprinted in his direction, letting my feet pound on the pavement. A part of me, one that was rapidly taking over, begged for me to let my speed free. To release the wolf that was caged up inside of me. 

It wasn’t who I normally was, but right now, I wanted a fight. I wanted a reason to work off the tension that had built up to the point of breaking. 

I needed something, anything, that I could control. 

“Hey,” I said as I neared the new guy and shoved his shoulder. “What are you doing here?” I growled, ready to pounce if the situation escalated. 

The new guy stopped walking, but just stood there with his shoulders hunched forward. It felt as if time was moving in slow motion as I waited for him to make a move. 

And then he turned, slow and steady, until he was staring at me. 

“Excuse me?” he asked. His voice was low as his dark eyes hardened. His jaw was clenched, and I could see the fire in his gaze. 

It matched the one blazing inside of mine. I could feel his anger as it rivaled mine. He was just as angry as I was. 

“What the hell are you doing skulking around my school?” I asked as I began to circle him, my muscles jumping from the desire to shift. 

He followed me with his gaze but kept his feet planted firmly on the ground. “Who are you?”

I scoffed as I rolled my shoulders and flexed my hands. “Don’t play dumb with me. I know what you are,” I said as I leaned forward, challenging him with my gaze. I was waiting for him to move. One gesture out of place and I would eat him for breakfast. 

His eyes widened, and I heard his sharp inhalation. Then his lips began to curl up as a sick smile spread across his face. “Bronson kid, I assume.”

I narrowed my eyes. I wasn’t going to be played with. This was my territory, and he was going to leave. “Go back to the hole you crawled out of. You’re not welcome here.” I leaned in, allowing my frame to tower over him. “Leave. Before things get worse.”

He hesitated, and before I could process what he was doing, he laughed. It was low and throaty, and I could feel the mocking connotation as it coursed through me. 

Which just pissed me off more. 

I grabbed his shoulders and shoved him toward the woods. He was leaving right now. 

“Mr. Bronson,” the sharp voice of Mr. Miller drew my attention behind me. I growled as I stepped away from the new kid and forced my nerves to relax. 

“Yes, Mr. Miller?” I asked as I cast a relaxed smile in his direction. 

The sun shone off Mr. Miller’s bald head as he walked up to us. His gaze ran over me and then the new kid. When it settled back on me, I knew I was in trouble. He had seen what I’d done. And from the way his eyes were wide and his jaw was set, he wasn’t happy about it. 

“Is this the way we act at Smoky Hills Academy?” he asked as he peered up at me. 

I sighed softly as I shook my head. “No.”

Mr. Miller folded his arms. “I apologize for Mr. Bronson’s behavior. This is not how we act toward new students.” Mr. Miller extended his hand. “I’m the principal, Mr. Miller. And you are?”

The new kid glanced at me and then back to Mr. Miller. I could feel his hesitation as he stared at Mr. Miller’s extended hand. Then, after what felt like a painful struggle inside of himself, he met Mr. Miller’s handshake for a second before he dropped his hand to his side. “Matthew Young.”

Mr. Miller nodded as he motioned toward the school. “Welcome to Smoky Hills, Mr. Young. I’ll help you get settled in at the office.” He glanced over his shoulder at me. “Mr. Bronson, I expect you head to your first class with vigor.”

I growled as I shoved my hands into my front pockets. I didn’t have any desire to go into the school, but now that I’d been seen, I didn’t have a choice. Mr. Miller was known to check up on students. And Dad breathing down my neck because I was being stupid wasn’t something I wanted to deal with right now. 

“Yes, sir,” I mumbled.

Mr. Miller nodded and then continued, “And let’s discuss how we behave with new students today after school. I expect to see you in detention.”

I parted my lips to complain, but Mr. Miller shook his head as he shot me a pointed look. Not wanting to push my luck, I just nodded and waited for Mr. Miller and Matthew to walk ahead of me. 

Once they were far enough away, I started after them. 

I didn’t care that I didn’t have my backpack. Honestly, there wasn’t much that was going to keep my attention. I was at school strictly as a formality. Once that bell rang and detention was over, I was heading back to the woods, where I was going to run until my legs hurt. 

I needed to regain some control of my life, and I wasn’t going to stop until that happened. 

I was going to find Grayson and bring him back home. No matter what. 

If I didn’t, and he was gone for sure, I didn’t know what I would become. But if today was any indication, it wasn’t going to be good. 

For anyone.

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The Smoky Hills Academy

Welcome to Smoky Hills Academy #1 in Football #1 in Wolf Shifters