"Where are we?" I murmured to myself, my eyes still glued to the barren field we were in. It wasn't only the invisible house that petrified me, but the whole land itself.
There was nothing here but grass that stretched the fields for miles, almost making it look like there was no end to it. It all looked so...eerie.
"Ariel?" a voice whispered, dragging me away from my hopeless thoughts. My eyes connected with Leon's solemn eyes and the expression in them were as clear as day.
Our chances of escaping this place grew slimmer each day and with Lucius in total control, we have no idea what's in store for us.
I looked down at my hands, trying to conjure up any form of power. We were outside the house so whatever was blocking our powers, should no longer apply. At this point, I would've settled for fire even though I have no practice with it. I was desperate at that moment but unsurprisingly, the results were disappointing.
A flick of fire emerged from my left palm before extinguishing on its own. The hope that gathered in me when seeing the flick of flame, vanished like the fire.
It was times like these that I wish I listened more to my dad during training. Fire was my strongest element when put in a battle, but it was so hard to control without practice, and I always ended up burning myself.
"That's so cool," Scott muttered, looking at me as if I was a very interesting specimen under a microscope. The other Alphas looked at my palm as if they couldn't believe their eyes. Suddenly I became more popular than the invisible house itself, if that was even possible.
"I guess I needed to see it to believe it," Cameron finally broke from his stare, giving me a wide grin. He shook his head before wrapping an arm around me. "You are officially my new best friend, Ariel."
"Then maybe it's time for you to make friendship bracelets to seal the deal," Trenton drawled out, making me stiffen in Cameron's embrace. "It's not like we were kidnapped and stranded in the middle of fucking nowhere, with a psychotic maniac as our captor or anything. Nope. You two just can carry on with your tea party."
"Shut-up," Cameron grounded out, narrowing his eyes at Trenton's form. "Admit it, Trenton. You're just jealous that you don't have the same powers that she has."
"Nah," Trenton retorted back, but I can tell that he was grinding his teeth at me. "I'm more jealous of her hair. How in the world is her hair so damn shiny?" The sneer in his voice chilled me to my bones.
"Are you puppies done yet?" Lucius's voice drawled out in a sing-song tone, immediately capturing everyone's attention. He was standing a few feet away from us, but admittedly, the distance did not put me at any ease at all. "But I must say, you guys are quite amusing to watch. I think you all deserve a standing ovation for being so entertaining.”
“What the hell is wrong with you?” Scotty shouted out, effectively bringing everyone to his attention. "I don't even know who the hell you are, Lucius."
"It's only been three days, little wolf," Lucius replied calmly. "Don't tell me you got bored in the mansion already." He gestured behind him to the invisible mansion, and watched as we became more afraid.
There was nothing standing there. How was that even possible?
"The X Project," I said quietly, suddenly remembering what they called their grand plan. Everyone's attention now turned towards me and most of them looked confused. "What does that mean? You and your father were talking about it the first day you took us."
"What a dumb name," Trenton muttered, sounding more like his confident self again. I ignored him and watched Lucius as his face slowly changed to one of amusement. I ignored that too and continued to ask questions.
I, like Scott and everyone else around me for that matter, was very desperate for an answer.
"You said that that you needed the future Alphas for the project and that I was taken, so I won't be in your way of it," I continued on, searching Lucius' eyes for answers that I know would not be given to us so soon.
Lucius cocked his head to the side and regarded me with a cool expression. "I noticed something princess. You seem to stand up against me more often when the mutts and fang boy are surrounding you."
My breath hitched, his words effectively ending my line of questioning.
"But when it's just you and me," he stated and smiled cruelly. "You wilt like a flower without water, my beautiful princess."
"Just leave her alone, Lucius," Leon shouted, sounding angry by the second.
"And answer the question," Cameron added, clearly agitated with Lucius. "What the hell is the X Project? And what're you going to do with us?"
"It's actually very simple, little mutt," Lucius replied, sounding cool and confident about his whole plan. "All you have to do is stay in the house and everything will go according to plan." He pointed to the invisible house behind him and gasped in mock horror.
"Lucius," Leon snarled, getting tired of his stupid games.
"Oh no" he whispered, with a cruel smile on his face. "I swear the house was right behind me a minute ago. It couldn't have vanished, could it? That's virtually impossible, right father?"
A chuckle rang from behind us and I knew, without even having to turn around, that it was Scar-man who made the sound. His laugh was now imprinted in my mind. I don't think I'll ever forget the sound of his ugly voice. A voice that now sends chills through my body.
"You're scaring them, son," Scar-man said, sounding amused by the entire conversation. "I think they now have a taste of your power, Lucius."
"I think so too," he murmured, snapping his fingers together. In an instant, the whole field vanished and we found ourselves standing inside the cold, dark basement again.
"Woah!" Cameron muttered, sinking down to one knee. The others looked disorientated as they tried to steady themselves onto their feet.
I steadied myself on the wall, trying desperately not to fall. I had no idea what was going on but one thing was starting to become clear to me. The powers I have were no match to the powers that Lucius owned.
I was a fool to think I could ever take him on.
"What are you?" I asked, sounding emotionless and defeated.
Lucius regarded me for a moment, before slowly giving me a smile that held no emotions. I could tell that what he was about to say was important because at the moment, Lucius' face now donned an expression of anger and seriousness.
"Have you ever heard of the creatures known as the Shards?"Lucius asked, staring at me with his bright cobalt eyes. "Because that is what we are."
I flinched from the intensity of his gaze and moved my gaze to his father, who mirrored his expression. But there was more. For a moment, I could've sworn I saw a life long of pain in them before it vanished with a blink.
"Shards?" Cameron and Scott asked simultaneously, clearly confused with the term.
"Like pieces of a broken glass or in this case, your fragmented brain, " Trenton asked sarcastically and before I could blink, Trenton landed hard on the basement wall.
"Fuck," he groaned, and swiped blood from the back of his head. "Was that necessary?"
"Not the best time to run your mouth, mutt," Leon replied, shaking his head at Trenton.
"I was just asking a question," Trenton denied, struggling to get up from the floor again. "I didn't think he was going to be sensitive about it."
Ignoring Trenton and Leon's bickering, I looked up at Arlo, wondering what his thoughts were.
If anyone had an idea on what a shard was, it would be Arlo.
"A Shard," Arlo repeated, slowly gaining the other wolves' attention. Trenton stopped complaining and looked up at Arlo in silence, no doubt wondering what spooked him.
Arlo looked straight at Lucius and his father before answering in a whispering tone. "I heard about them from somewhere."
"You have?" Orion asked, looking questionably at Arlo.
"I have but I always thought it was a part of the past," he said, looking slightly dazed. "Now with all I have witnessed, I'm not too sure if it is just that."
"But from where did you hear this from?" Cameron asked impatiently, getting irritated with all the secrecy surrounding our captors.
"My grandfather once told me about them as a bedtime story," he replied, still staring at our captors intensively, who at the moment looked impressed with Arlo's words. "Shards. They were supernatural creatures that thrived on Earth a long time ago. Centuries, in fact."
"And what did they do?" I asked, starting to get afraid again.
"They were protectors actually," he replied, looking confused with his own words. "Protectors of the human race. Or that's what my grandfather said anyways."
"You have got to be shitting me," Scott hoarsely said, too shocked to say anything else.
"The human race?" Leon asked, looking wide-eyed at both Lucius and scar-man. "These bastards cannot be the same people who're supposed to protect the human race."
"Not only that," Arlo whispered, still sounding unsure of his words. "These Shards are the ones who created a balance between the Vampire world and the Werewolf society. They are the ones who kept order and kept the two creatures from waging war with one another."
"Exactly the same way that Lucius and his father are keeping us locked up in this place," Arlo said, giving us a sad look that held defeat and understanding.
"Which is...?" I asked, now afraid of knowing the answers to my desperate questions.
"Spells," he answered dully. "These shards can cast spells that go beyond our imagination. From our inability to change into our werewolf forms to the invisible mansion we're standing in right now. They're all a result of the spells that they bonded us with."
"Spells?" Leon asked, with wide eyes of his own. "You can't possibly mean magic, right?"
When Arlo nodded, I felt defeat fill my entire entity.
I was right.
Silver wolf or not, I was no match for them.
"But hold on," Orion said, staring at Arlo with dread in his eyes. "You said that these Shards lived on Earth centuries ago. As in the past. What happened to them and how in the world are Lucius and his father, these so called Shards?"
Arlo looked at our captors, who were no doubt enjoying our fear and confusion, before turning towards us with a bleak expression. "I don't know anything about Lucius and his father but for the other Shards...My grandfather told me about an ugly war that took place centuries ago. A war where all werewolves and vampires fought together to bring down the Shards one by one."
Arlo stopped talking before directing his gaze towards me. He looked frustrated as he bit his bottom lip in clear agitation. "I thought it was a story but now everything makes perfect sense."
"What is it?" I prompted softly, seeing Arlo give a resigned sigh.
"I don't know much about the details," he said, looking at me dejectedly as if reluctant to say the next few words. "But I do know that the creature who led the war against the Shards...well, he too was a silver wolf."ns 184.108.40.206da2