Zade cocked his head to the side in confusion, but shook that perplexity away as he eyed the man.

“Who are you?” Zade demanded, his eyes fierce and powerful, the inner beast within him surging forward.

“My name is Peter. Peter Donavon. The Agency sent me after you,” he said calmly, holding his rough, calloused hands up in surrender. Zade instantly tensed at the confession. Annabelle raised her hand and gently touched Zade’s arm and his gaze snapped to her face.

She then turned her attention to Peter. “Why does the Agency want us dead?” she asked quietly.

Peter sighed. “They won’t tell; it’s classified information among only my predecessors. I’m just a hired gun.”

Annabelle and Lana exchanged worried looks. “Hired to kill us,” Annabelle said slowly. “But why? What have we done?”

“I don’t know. But whatever it is, I’m not involving myself in it. I’m not aware that I was supposed to kill kids. I won’t do it.” Peter Donavon shook his head in disgust. “Killing kids. That’s despicable.”

Lana furrowed her eyebrows and then dropped her head disconsolately, her eyes distant, lost in a memory.

“You can’t hide from the Agency,” Peter said. “They’ll find you wherever you go.”

“Then we’ll keep moving,” replied Annabelle evenly, her face strangely serene. She grabbed onto Zade’s hand again and the three werewolves turned around, moving away from Peter Donavon with an ethereal quickness.

“Wait,” he called out after them. “Be careful. The Agency won’t stop until your kind is dead.”

“What do they have against Lycans?” Annabelle queried over her shoulder.

“A lycan killed my friend’s wife and two children for revenge,” Donavon murmured. “He’s been raging for your kind’s extinction ever since.”

Zade turned around to face Mr. Donavon, his stance strong and protective. “We cannot bear the weight of another's burdens on our shoulders. Especially not the mistakes of one of our kind.”

And Zade tugged on Annabelle’s arm, urging her on, away from Peter.

“I can help,” he said slowly. “I can lead them away from you. They think you’ve spilt innocent blood.”

“We’ve done no such thing!” Lana exclaimed a little too quickly for her liking.

“I know. I can lead them astray.”

“Then do so. Leave us in peace,” Zade said, lacing his arm around Annabelle’s waist. Lana kept her gaze fixed on the ground beneath her feet as the group moved on, trudging towards hopes of a freedom-filled future.

The End

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