Chapter 21Mature

Hearing the way the customer said his friend’s name made Alex cock an eyebrow. Looking up, he caught sight of him looking in his direction again as the door opened and he departed. “Huh. You know that guy?”

“Not really. I’ve seen him once before, though.” Nathan said.

“OK. I got one more game here, and this one looks pretty interesting.”

“Which one?”

“Operation Flashpoint.”

“I know that one. Sandbox gameplay in a military shooter.”

“I think he’d get a kick out of this.” Flipping the box over once again, Alex replaced the manual. “OK. I’ll get this one.”

As he walked up to the counter and handed the case over, within seconds, he caught the scent of the customer. At first, it was dominated by cleaners of some kind, but with another few breaths, every warning receptor in Alex’s head went off. His pulse rose as he realized who he’d been talking to.

“F***.” Alex didn’t waste a second making for the door.

“What?” Nathan called out. “What’s going on?”

Alex didn’t answer and shoved the door open. His eyes darted left and right as he lurched outside and looked around. He didn’t see the other werewolf. Sniffing at the air, he caught dozens of scents, but none from that guy. The wind at the time wasn’t helping either.

Cursing himself, Alex tried to see if he could spot him from the parking lot. A red hoodie couldn’t be that tough to notice, but as his luck would have it, he didn’t see anything. “Shit.”

Heading back inside, Nathan was quick to continue. “What was that all about?”

“That was the guy that attacked me.” Alex said, his fast breathing making his reply shaky.

The look on Nathan’s face hearing that was one on the border of asking, “Are you sure?” His voice gave a different response. “Sure didn’t seem like it.”

“No, but that was him.” Alex sighed, his hand running through his hair. Several questions rushed into his head, the main one being if this guy was in fact stalking his friends. Even if it had been over a week since he’d caught his scent last, it couldn’t have been any coincidence that he’d encountered it at two of the places he was most familiar with.

“Well… we got a good look at him. So, there’s that.” Nathan said.

When his friend said that, Alex’s hand went for his phone. As he grabbed it, his thoughts centered on his father, he hesitated. Even if they managed to find him, he could shift at will. Possibly harming or killing someone afterwards. The idea of his father being inflicted with what he had, much less ending up in the hospital, made him feel like someone had punched his stomach.

Nathan then spoke up, hearing his friend’s shaky breathing. “Dude, hey. Calm down.”

With his right hand wrapped over his mouth and his face turned away from his friend, Alex continued. “Still can’t believe we were talking to that guy.”

“Well, you didn’t know until just now. Don’t beat yourself up over it.”

“I’m not.”

Nathan didn’t respond, instead going for his smartphone. “I’m calling Catherine. See if you can get a hold of Marcus.”

Alex nodded. “Good idea. Better let them know what this f***er looks like.” His tone was visceral, if not hateful. Something Nathan noticed quickly.

The End

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