The Gifted Series
Qwillan McTirr is an excellent tracker. That's not bragging, just fact. Qwill has tracked lost hikers and lost kids for law enforcement all over the west. But now, he is tracking for the FBI.
What began as a simple kidnapping case reveals moles at the top levels of government, international assassins who will kill anyone who gets between them and their goals, and puts Qwill and his family in danger — again. His family, his pack, has spent their lives keeping Qwill's secret from — well, everyone. But this time, the danger might come from the very people they should be able to trust.
"No, I do not change at the full moon. I'm not a werewolf, for crying outloud. You people have werewolf on the brain. Get over it!" — Qwillan McTirr
“Run!” Mum whispered. “Follow the wolf. She'll know where to go.” Mum turned me toward the dense fir forest and gave me a little shove between my shoulder blades. Men were shouting in the distance. I heard the heavy whomp of Da's rifle.
“Go!” Mum said again then turned away from me and back toward the noise of fighting.
The she-wolf slipped her muscular neck under my small hand, and I gripped her heavy ruff. Without a sound she pulled me toward the trees. I could feel the air press against my skin as we neared the forest. I could feel the change in the density of the molecules as the atmosphere flowed around the trees, and with sure feet I followed the wolf's shifting path as she wove through the trunks and thick undergrowth. The harsh sounds of fighting faded as we threaded our way deeper into the forest. After timeless passing, she pulled me under the drooping branches of a giant tamarack, it’s feathery-needled branches sinking to the ground, creating a quiet resting place.
My nose told me her den was near and that other wolves gathered here from time to time. Now, it was just her and me. I let go of her fur and sank to the needle-covered ground, the past years' discarded needles providing a soft cushion to rest on. I could smell the fear on me.
She nudged me and whined. Others would come soon and would not be happy to find me — a human — here in their sanctuary. So I removed my shirt, shivering a little in the coolness. My boots and socks followed. Then I unzipped my trousers and dropped them on top of my shirt. I topped the pile with my underwear. Gathering together my discarded clothes, I followed the sounds of the female whuffing and pawing. I knelt near her, feeling with my free hand where she dug. Placing my small pile of clothes in the shallow depression she had made, I helped her paw dirt and needles and bits of twigs and branches back over it, completely covering my clothes. My human stink would still be easy for the wolves to detect, but my human presence would not.
Concentrating on the smells and sounds around me, I shifted effortlessly into my other self, a small, dark gray cub about the size of a cocker spaniel. The female nudged me toward another shallow depression in the earth. I curled up into it, and she curled around me, covering me with her tail.
Wolves are night animals, preferring to move and hunt in the sheltering darkness. When full dark came and my parents had driven off the intruders, I would return to my birth form, and she would guide me back to my home and family.
Until then, we slept.
— ONE, Shifter : The Gifted Series
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