Being a beta is a great honor. Not just any wolf can do the job. I have been the beta of my pack, the Black Heart Pack, for nearly four years, since I was sixteen.
My parents had been the betas prior to me, but I found out when I took over the position that they hadn’t done the best job. They were months behind on reports and balancing the statements and such.
The beta has a lot of responsibility because he is next in line should anything happen to the alpha and he has no heirs. Being such an anal-retentive person, I took nearly a month, working late into the night, to get caught up.
I recommended to Alpha Gianni that we go digital so he would have access to anything regarding members, finances, or complaints at the touch of a button.
Had this system already been in place, my parents would have been in deep trouble.
About my family—now there is a poorly written reality show in the making. My sister is the fair-haired one, about a year older than me. My parents dote on Jenny, making sure she is always happy and dressed to impress.
Depending on their rank, she-wolves carry their pups for as little as four months but no more than six months. Birth control doesn’t work on us, nor does the morning-after pill.
So when we sleep with someone, even if he is not our true mate, we have a strong chance of becoming with pup. That’s why it’s encouraged for all to wait for their mate.
Though encouraged, it is extremely difficult to prevent pre-mating sex. Jenny is now the girlfriend of the future alpha Ian, so she thinks she is the future luna, even though they haven’t marked each other as mates.
Wolves generally won’t wait to stake their claim on a she-wolf, but my parents support the delusions that Jenny is under, no matter what I say. I have given up, as I only get flack from them.
They say I am jealous that she has an alpha mate, that she is more beautiful than I am and will do many wonderful and great things in her life.
If it were the first time I heard something like this, I would be devastated, but since I was ten I have heard different variations of these words. I have become numb to them.
Just after I took over my parents’ roles as beta, I tried to move out to the beta house that is near the pack house and the alpha’s house. But they nixed the plan, saying I couldn’t be trusted.
When I found out the real reason, I lost my water. When a high-ranking pup takes over a position but still lives at home, the parents are given control over the income.
Now a beta makes a good deal of money, so my parents wanted to have that control to make sure their princess was well taken care of. Once I found out, I petitioned the elders’ council to allow me to live on my own.
When I did this, I was able to prove what a responsible pup I was. I also started saving up money by working in the human town not too far from us.
We lived in a small town in northern California, Squaw Valley, near Lake Tahoe. I worked at a local diner, where a regular couple adopted me as their own.
They were a sweet elderly couple that were never blessed with their own children, so they took me under their wing, just like the alpha’s family had. Lily and Marcel were amazing.
I could talk to them about almost anything—just not about werewolf things. We have a law that no humans can know about us, as they will fear us and try to kill us.
I saw them pretty much every day for almost one and a half years until they died, within a couple days of each other. Shortly after, I found out they had left me a sizable inheritance.
It was a huge surprise, but I used it to start my first business—a hardware store, which we needed in the area. Alpha Gianni helped me set it up under a pseudonym, as I didn’t want my family to know about the money.
My business has been successful, and not just financially. It helps older wolves who need a way to occupy their time, as well as gives teen wolves a chance to learn about work and a way to break into the workforce.
I have since opened two more shops, a florist and a mini mart, in our town. No one knows who owns them—everyone thinks they are pack businesses—and I run everything from the pack.
Alpha Gianni has been helpful with showing me the ropes and how to manage employees. Of course, like anyone who has a business in the pack area, my businesses pay taxes to the pack to help maintain and run the pack.
Every Saturday, all pack members eat dinner together at the pack house, where all unmated wolves without their own property live. The only way to get out of the dinner is through patrol or work.
As beta, I definitely have no excuse to miss these dinners, which means I always have to see my sister and parents. These are always tense times for me, as they are filled with sly comments or innuendo.
This Saturday, I was sitting near the head of the table, near Alpha Gianni and Luna Lara. Their son was near Luna Lara, while I was across from him and my family across from me, and so on down the line to the omegas.
Every pack has omegas, who in olden days were treated like slaves. Yet laws have changed, and they are now treated the same as all wolves, just of no rank.
They worked and earned a wage like everyone else, although they did the more menial tasks in the pack house, such as cooking, cleaning, and maintaining the grounds. No one is mistreated or abused by higher ranks.
My mother, Jessica, looked at me and asked snarkily, “Kennedy, do you have plans for your birthday this year? You know you should be meeting your mate about now.”
I sighed. “Yes, Mother. Luna Lara is planning a party for the night of my birthday. All surrounding packs have been invited.”
She shook her head. “You aren’t planning it yourself?”
“No, Mother, I have pack business the day before, so Luna Lara volunteered to help me.”
She sighed. “Being beta is hard, yet I still managed all functions for the family myself.”
Luna Lara spoke up. “Jessica, you had a mate to do the brunt of the work for beta. Betas have almost as much work as the alpha, if not more, depending on the pack.”
Mother smiled at the luna. “Yes, of course they do. Hopefully her mate will take over the work, and then she will do the work she is destined to do.”
I chuckled. “I will still remain the beta, not my mate. It is my calling, not his.”
Mother shook her head as Jenny laughed. “This is why she won’t find a mate, Mom. She is so consumed with work. What wolf would allow that?”
I wanted to let this pointless conversation go, but Jenny continued, “Plus she looks so drab. She uses no makeup, her clothes are jeans, T-shirts, and sneakers. You need to look like a lady to get a man.”
Ian laughed. “That is so true, baby.”
Alpha Gianni was getting angry. “Let’s discuss more important things, like the upcoming Alpha/Beta training seminar. Edie, you’re helping to plan it this month?”
I nodded. “Yes, it will be here this time, Alpha. They have asked if you could run the physical training, as well as a class or two.”
“Of course. Who is handling the physical training for betas?”
“It’s supposed to be Ian, but he refuses to.”
Alpha Gianni looked at his son. “Why do you refuse your duty?”
“Because it should be Edie who trains them. They are her station.” Ian glared at me, pissed.
Alpha Gianni shook his head. “So then you will assist me in training the alphas.”
“I won’t be here, actually. I will be away in Reno—on business, of course.”
I looked away and snickered. “Business,” as in, he was going to Reno to gamble, drink, and screw Jenny all weekend.
“What business in Reno?” Alpha Gianni demanded, annoyed.
Ian sighed. “I am meeting with a gentleman about a business venture.”
Luna Lara, sensing the growing tension, jumped in. “Maybe this is something to be discussed tomorrow in your office, my dear.”
Alpha Gianni nodded. “Yes, my dear, I agree. Edie and Ian, meeting tomorrow, 8 a.m.”
Ian groaned as I nodded, “Yes, sir.”
The remainder of dinner went quite comfortably, and the pack was dismissed after dessert. As I left the table, Ian cornered me.
“Why did you tell my dad I refused to do the training?”
I sighed. “I was asked a question, and I answered. I won’t lie to the alpha or anyone for anyone.”
He grunted and punched the wall beside my head. “Don’t do it again, or when I am alpha, I will have you replaced.”
“That is your choice, but you are not my alpha yet, Ian. I answer to your father.”
As I was talking, Jenny came up behind Ian and began rubbing his crotch. “Ian, are you going to bitch Edie out much longer? I need satisfaction.”
He turned to her and kissed her passionately in front of me.
I groaned. “Can you do this in private? No one wants a live porno.”
Jenny laughed, breaking the kiss. “You’re just jealous that no one wants you.”
I snickered. “At least my mate will get a pure mate, unlike some of us.”
I began to walk away, but Jenny grabbed my arm. “What are you saying, Kennedy?”
“That you’re a slut who will open her legs for anything that points at her.”
Jenny slapped my face and began to cry, bringing my parents over. And that is never good.
“What happened?” my father asked Jenny.
“Edie called me a slut because no one wants her,” she responded with tear-filled eyes.
He looked at me with disgust. “Is that true, Kennedy?”
I sighed. “No, it’s not. I called her a slut because she is one. She opens her legs for any male with a hard-on. It’s a simple fact.”
My father slapped my face so hard, I started to bleed. “Don’t ever call Jenny that. Jealousy is an ugly trait.”
I wanted to cry, but I refused to do so in front of them. I sighed again. “Apparently no one here can accept the truth, so I will leave you all.”
As I began to leave, my father grabbed my arm and stopped me.
“This is why we’ve felt you cannot handle your own finances or your own life,” he said. “You are moving back home, and we will control your business until you are mature enough for the responsibility.”
Before I could reply, Alpha Gianni came into the room. “What is going on here?”
Jenny, Ian, and my parents looked at me to explain. I looked down. The alpha, not liking having his orders ignored, roared again. “What is going on here?!”
“A misunderstanding, sir,” I replied.
He walked over to me and looked at my face. “This is not a misunderstanding, this is deliberate. What caused this?”
Ian spoke up. “I corrected Edie for her slip about my refusal to train the alphas when Jenny came, seeking attention. Edie overstepped and said things that were uncalled for, and her father corrected it.”
I looked at Ian with disgust and sighed. I could see Alpha Gianni didn’t believe him, as he looked at Jenny and Ian, then me.
“Edie, what did you say that was uncalled for?”
“Alpha, Ian was correct about talking to me about the training, when Jenny came over and started fondling Ian, asking how much longer it would take as she needed to be satisfied.
“I asked if she could take it elsewhere, as I didn’t want a live porno. I was told I was jealous because no one wants me. I stated at least I was pure for my mate, unlike some people.
“I was asked to clarify and I did, stating that Jenny and Ian were sluts who open their legs for anything that comes their way. My father heard this and slapped me when no one could accept the truth.
“Now I am to move home so that my family can take over my finances and spend all my money on that fake ho beside Ian. No one here works; they depend on my contributions to their household twice a month.”
My father began to speak but was waved off by Alpha Gianni. “I have heard enough. Also, I can read your minds and see that what Beta Kennedy said is true.
“Ian, Jenny, you know there are laws against fornicating before you meet your mate. I also know you, Jenny and Ian, are both extremely promiscuous with any humans or wolves you find. It stops now.
“Also, Lucas, Beta Kennedy is of age to be on her own, and the council agreed with such assessment. She is a hard-working, responsible young she-wolf any parent should be proud of.
“Leave it be, or face disciplinary actions. She is a titled wolf, while none of you are”.
Ian cleared his throat. “I am the future alpha.”
Alpha Gianni chuckled. “Not as of now, you’re not. You don’t have the inherent gene, and you refuse to train to prove you can be a leader. So, no, you are no better than an omega right now.
“Disperse, and I will see you and Kennedy at 8 a.m. tomorrow morning.”
I left the room and went to the safety of my house.
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