[Crossposted to wolfliam, bq_karl, w_qb_hoot and walker_were]
Liam looked at his alphas and warned them, "We scan the area in fur, stay close enough that we have each other's back. The one the Vamp killed might have acted on his own, but we can't take chances."
"The pack's been warned to give that area a wide berth, but I have a feeling one or two might be feeling macho - we'll need to keep an eye out for them too." Hoot stood with his back to the wall, arms crossed as he stared at the ground, mind already on the hunt.
Karl sat just to the side of Hoot, eyes moving between the two men as they spoke. "Do we have anymore information... any other rumors?" He'd not heard anything, but one thing the beta knew now, Liam had resources he'd never even thought of.
"All silent," Liam said with a shake of his head. "But even the bloodsuckers are spooked. Besides we have some young pups to watch out for." Liam turned to Karl and asked, "Have you seen Walker recently?"
"Not too recently - maybe a week or so ago?" Eyes widening, he moved to stand, "Shit..."
"Easy Karl, we'll check on him too. Walker's a pro at living in the woods, he'd know if there was someone near him that didn't belong." Hoot patted the other's shoulder, "And he'd have let us know."
Liam agreed and added, "I was thinking Walker would be a good outpost of sorts... he knows the woods."
"He'd be invaluable." Hoot agreed, mind sorting through the pack, "Might ask Josh to keep his ears open as well."
"Good, good," Liam said thinking it through. "We will look after the pack first, but our other Were brothers too."
"So we head out now or tonight?" Hoot was all set to head out, but would follow his prince's lead. "Will we consider more patrols?"
Karl swung his gaze to Hoot, concentration heavy in the gaze. "Is that... I'm not sure some of the pack are suited for that."
Hoot nodded, "Most likely they aren't, but we'll ferret out the ones who are and work with what we have if Liam agrees."
"I have a good idea of who could patrol without taking matters into their own hands," Liam said having already given it some thought. "But in the mean time I want to get out there and scout around... so, let's get out and find our fur."
To a human ear the woods would be silent, but wolf ears twitched and heard the rattle of insects along side the scurry of nocturnal animals. This is the place, Liam wolf understood and sniffed at the ground. Human blood and flesh below.
Lifting his large head toward the skies, Hoot sniffed as well, nose wrinkling at the scent of decaying human. Yes... Trailing off, his alert eyes narrowed, I smell another - could have just been someone walking this way...
Nose to the ground, Karl spotted a small shiny piece of metal, a discarded brass from a rifle, Bullet here... silver.
A growl rumbled in Liam's chest and the black wolf warned Karl back. Back... see if the human's trail lead to others.
Giving the offending object a wide berth, Karl moved up to Hoot's side and sniffed the ground again. Lots of human here - and were and vamp. One vamp mostly.
Mellors - these woods are at the back of his property. Hoot caught a sound on the wind, a soft caress of words he couldn't make out, but there was more than one. Could simply have been lovers - and just as easily not. Hear that Liam?
The black wolf's ears twitched and Liam turned his head towards the sound. Stealthy brothers. Slowly he began to move through the woods.
Falling in behind his prince, Hoot kept his ears sharp, eyes sharper as they padded through the woods. Sounds like a few... more than two I think?
Karl hung back, flanking the other two and out of sight amidst the trees. Do we know who they are? Human or is it that vampire?
Liam smelled them before he saw them; a small group of hunters in a makeshift camp. He dropped low and listened.
Crouching in the brush, Karl stay back, Hoot eyed the men, four maybe... as long as some weren't out scouting - and all armed. Mellors needs to clean his woods better. Watching the movements for a few minutes, the alpha listened to their words and didn't like what he heard.
Obeying, the black wolf burrowed into the undergrowth, eyes golden and fierce as he watched the humans, the anger rippling along his muscles. Anger at what these humans could do to any member of the pack, the most likely to be the young ones still learning how to protect themselves. I wait.
Liam knew there were too many for the three wolves to take, but took the opportunity to listen to their plans. Discussions of the hunt... the kill. Liam edged closer. The talk turned to beer and fucking...
I don't think they're the ones... if they were hunters, they'd focus on the hunt... Karl sent to his two companions, ears having picked up the conversation as well.
Hoot remained silent, eyes moving between Liam and the men, watching his prince and protecting.
Lifting his noise to the breeze Liam scented the air. It reeked of the humans and their beer, but there was no immediate threat. With a twitch of his ear he signalled his alphas back. They will kill, but not our kind. We move down past the gamekeeper's land towards the bayou.
Silently moving back, Hoot finally stood to his full height, the trees and brush hiding him. Will we need to worry about him?
Karl stood next to Hoot and shook, dislodging some bramble and twigs from his pelt. Stupid bush... Looking sheepishly - or as sheepish as a were could - at his prince, he ducked his head.
Liam gave a wolfy grin at Karl but replied to Hoot, The gamekeeper is paired with one of ours... he is under our protection just as Frankie is.
Karl blinked; he'd never met Frankie yet, and from some of what he'd heard, was on the more relieved side of that. I won't bother him - the vamp I mean. Looking at Hoot, the beta were figured there'd be a talk in his future.
I remember - he stayed in what's now Karl's room... he helped ours and trusted us to keep him safe in the day. Wouldn't betray that now. Sighing deeply, the dark wolf scanned the surrounding area, Will he need to be warned about this? The hunters I mean, and also that we're out here looking?
Liam shook his head. The Vampire is strong and killed the one who hurt his wolf. He turned and trotted away towards the bayou. Come we'll check the lion.
Falling in behind Hoot, Karl kept his eyes moving, sweeping the area behind and to the sides. Do you think this was random? He didn't address it to either figuring one would answer.
Starting to think so, Liam answered not recognizing signs of an organised attack. But a full sweep of our our territory is needed to keep the pups safe.
Got some new ones... and with Hoot's bartender wanting to join... Trailing off, Karl shook his large head.
Josh can take care of himself, but he'd be a good one to have for patrol if needed. Hoot assured Karl, knowing to the beta that even if you were a full grown were, joining the pack put you at the bottom of the pecking order. Rounding a large tree, Hoot blinked a moment, the splash of moonlight bright. How far in does Walker live? He hadn't seen the feline in the bar since the night Walker had fed the vampire.
We're close, Liam acknowledged understanding that Walker would have already sensed them in his territory. He stopped and gave a soft almost mournful howl then cocked his head to listen. It was answered with a deep rumble nearby. Look up, Liam told the others.
Karl did and nearly snorted. Figures... Relief flowed through him; Walker was safe, and looked like he was enjoying himself.
Hoot also lifted his eyes to the tree above. Think he gets a better view up there? Sitting, the alpha watched the feline, not having seen many he was interested in - aside from body shape - what other differences there were.
Good evening Walker. Liam sat, head cocked at the large frame of the mountain lion. Care to join us?
Walker hit the ground next to them in an elegant leap and flicked his tail. You after the hunter? he asked and purred a little at Karl.
With one eye on his companions, Karl moved to Walker and rubbed his muzzle against his friend's, greeting him before stepping back. We are... Prince Liam was concerned for your safety - as was Hoot.
Mellors got rid of him. The sleek mountain lion sat and lowered his head a little so his golden eyes were level with the wolves. The woods seem clear now... there are hunters, but not with silver.
We ran across a few - seemed harmless enough, more a time away from home to drink and lie and brag. Hoot responded, eyes roaming over the large body. You've not been bothered?
They only laugh at the harmless hippy. They don't see me. Walker explained with a light chuffing sound that was almost a chuckle.
Karl ducked his head, knowing exactly what they might have seen a few times. Human's see what they want - and you're harmless to them.
The mountain lion showed his massive teeth, but in a mimic of a smile rather than in threat. The Bayou is safe for our kind... at least for now. Is the city?
Hoot started to nod, but stopped. We haven't checked yet... the attack was here and was the logical place to start. Looking at Karl, he tipped his head to the side, questioning his lieutenant.
I've traveled through the city, but haven't seen anything. Wasn't exactly looking for them, but now... trailing off, Karl wondered at it.
The streets of the city are the threat, Walker warned then stood and bumped Karl with his large head. Keep human ears open to voices in the bars. With that Walker leaped up into the overhanging branch and resumed his watch.
Show off Muttering under his breath, Karl stared up at his friend, a silent promise to come back out and visit.
Luckily I own one... but will have to ask others to infiltrate the more 'human' bars in town. Hoot spoke to Liam, but sent it to all. If either of you are in one... though unasked, the question was there, addressed to Karl and Walker.
Liam snorted, I know they will be in a bar; human or not. He turned from the mountain lion and back towards the city. Back to the buildings and skin.
Giving one last look up at his friend, he sent a silent promise to come visit again. Would it be safe to do at a run? He wanted the chance to run with his Prince and alpha, but the call was up to them.
With no warning other than a yip Liam took off at a fast run, ears pricked and tongue lolling with the sheer fun of it.
Hoot cast one last look himself then took off after the prince, leaving Karl to catch up.
Cheaters Who it was projected too didn't matter since Karl himself sped off, his long legs eating the ground quickly. He probably wouldn't catch up to them, but could keep them in his sight. And enjoy the hell out of the feel of running, his wolf as excited as a pup.
- Liam, Hoot, Karl and Walker ~ Hunting the hunters