Where You Go

Cedar Creek 
#1
Immediately following the events of this thread
@Wolf King (cameo unconscious Natalie)


Dakila stayed in the back seat, feeling it was better to be back here with the unconscious young woman. He knew she wouldn't wake--wouldn't for some hours, in fact--but it didn't change the fact that he felt badly leaving her to lay on her own. So while Natalie would probably never know that he had ridden back to Cedar Creek with her head in his lap, he did. He thought of Katya, how she seemed so keen to invest time into this other young wolf and just... knew he had to be here for her. Whether he knew her beyond her name or not, it hardly mattered.

He was glad they'd gotten to her quickly, and now she was safe. No better hands than that of Alina's at this point. Normally having someone unconscious and naked in a vehicle would have made him somewhat paranoid, but for some illogical reason having Alina there made everything seem perfectly manageable.

This time he didn't need to navigate, as they knew the way back home perfectly well once they found a main road. He was quiet, contemplative for his own part, thinking about all that he had witnessed and realizing he knew less first-hand than he expected. What he'd seen today, it was a lot more like the powerful supernatural movie creatures from stories than anything he'd ever experienced for himself. The sort of traits that surely came only with time.

He glanced up after a few minutes and met his sire's eyes in the rearview mirror.
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#2
 The ride home was not nearly as tense as the ride here had been. Her grip was relaxed instead of white-knuckled and she actually had the music on, though it was set at a more quiet volume than she normally had it. As an added bonus, she was even driving at the speed limit instead of considerably over it, for the comfort of the cop in the back seat. It'd take them longer to get back but at least the crisis had been mostly avoided.

 She felt eyes on her and glanced up into the mirror, quirking an eyebrow as their eyes met. "You good?" She asked, reaching over to turn the music down a touch more, putting her eyes back on the road at the same time.
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#3
Dakila was glad for the change of pace.

"I'm good," he assured her. "You get calls like that very often?" he wondered, finding he didn't really know what it was like for her as King. He knew that she was here for them whenever she could be, he'd witnessed it himself more than once. But what she did, the number of lives she had to watch over, surely it was as time-consuming as being a parent.
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#4
 "Mm..." It was a thoughtful sound, drumming her fingers on the steering wheel as the truck rolled to a stop at a red light. She honestly wouldn't say often but it also wasn't infrequent. It happened enough for her to have a routine and all the supplies loaded in the truck when the calls did come.

 "Often enough," Was her final answer, glancing back up at the mirror again. "A little more often when there's more of us, usually, but this is the first time in a while." Cars crossed the intersection at a steady pace while Alina ran through the numbers in her head. "There's twelve of us now. Another new one joined just a few days ago. Been a wolf eight years and has no idea what she's doing, so I expect it to start happening a little more often." Inconvenient, yes, but the little hobo would likely learn with time.
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#5
It made sense, he supposed. With a limited population to look over, it would be concerning if it were consistently trouble. New ones would stir the waters. New dynamics, less experience... Natalie hadn't done anything unusual in the grand scheme of things, even if it wasn't a common occurrence. Hopefully she wouldn't feel shame for it. Frankly, he was just glad that she'd been somewhere they could find out she needed help from.

"Eight years and still lost? That happens?" He couldn't fathom it, but he also knew his own turning was somewhat charmed. As much as being infected could be done kindly, anyway. Support from the first moment, and the disposition to handle stress well enough to not shift in bad situations.
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#6
 A huff left her as she watched the counter on the crosswalk like tick down. 17. 16. 15. 14. "Unfortunately. She got turned and no one stuck around to teach her." It wasn't uncommon in their world; Alina had been turned and then left but she'd very quickly been snapped up by the local pack. She knew now that it had been to her benefit but at the time, she had been a rebellious shithead. If she ever had a young "her" join Red River, she'd kick their ass into next Sunday to make them behave.

 "Apparently she never joined a pack after that. She trespassed on our turf a time or two and then ran into an old friend of mine who'd directed her my way." She still needed to send Kai her fuck you gifts. Maybe she'd just go take a giant wolf-shit on her doorstep. Alternatively, she could just do both. Choices, choices.
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#7
"Honestly, I can't even imagine it. Not having help." He tried to imagine someone like Natalie, or even himself six months ago, trying to do all of this without someone to put it all out there in helpful facts or offer support. It seemed like a good way to cause or find a whole lot of trouble.

"I don't know if I've ever thanked you." Or even acknowledged it a lot beyond that first little while. It was... strange, to thank the person who had turned you. On purpose, no less. But he did feel grateful to her, even if parts of the whole concept were twisted. "I suppose... if I was going to get snapped up by something, you at least set me up for success."
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#8
 Surprise colored her emotional palette, affording Dakila another glance in the window. Of all things, she had never expected him to thank her for dragging him into this lifestyle. Actually, in the beginning, Alina had expected him to hate her though to her knowledge, he had never felt that way and if he had, he had never shown it. "Sure thing."

 A slight pause and then, "Has anyone ever told you that you're strange?"
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#9
It wasn't like he loved this. But he also didn't hate it, and sometimes he felt like he really was better off trying to help supernatural kind from the inside. Better than getting eaten for being nosy. Better than running across a new were in the bushes and getting sliced and left without any direction. It wasn't the single most ideal outcome of his entire life, but if things had to go sideways--well, he wasn't exactly mad to be sitting here, helping Alina.

His brow raised to her question, and he buttoned down a smile. "I've heard a few variations of that." Though it was funny to hear her say it. Usually it was other cops, wondering why he did things the way he did them. Like coming to Mountainside in the first place when so many others were keen to get out. "Dare I ask what makes you say it, though?"
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#10
 He had been told that. She'd figured as much. Dakila had an unusually calm, seemingly unshakeable personality. Even when she had turned him, he hadn't been all that flustered. Honestly, he'd asked questions that she didn't think she'd ever heard a newbie ask. Then again, she'd only ever turned two people, including Dakila himself. There were the ones that her wolves turned, too, and she did usually field a couple questions from them. She hadn't with Nat. The thought occurred to her that Dante had done well in teaching her.

 "You're weirdly calm practically all of the time. Nothing really fazes you." And it wasn't that he didn't care, she didn't think. "Most people would have gotten upset if I had turned them like I did you."
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#11
Again, he remembered Katya asking him why he wasn't angry. It wasn't really something he could put into words then, and he wasn't sure he was going to be able to do it now that he was even more settled with the idea.

Still, this was a conversation. And an honest one at that. "I guess there's a difference to me, between being upset about something you can change and upset about something you can't. I wasn't... happy with what you did, but you could have done a lot worse than reach through my car window to change my life." Mauling him in an alleyway, for instance, probably would have made for a lot different of an affair. Pretty hard to believe he would have been calm then.

"If cursing you out and refusing your help out of spite was the other option, well..."

It just wasn't something he was willing to make worse than it already was.
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#12
She snorted, huffing air through her nose. "You're reasonable, too."
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#13
He laughed in spite of himself. "Well, I try to be. The most irrational thing I ever did was moving here in the first place, probably. I only get crazy in the pursuit of justice."

Not actually crazy. He, uh, hoped.
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