Fandom: Teen Wolf
“Celestyna Nadzieja Stilinski!” The strident voice called out from the entry to the clearing. She threw her head back against her companion’s furry side in frustration. Just one day to do as she wants. Is that really so much to ask? As if reading her thoughts her companion huffed in agreement. She carefully marked her place before closing the book and climbing to her feet.
She smoothed out her pink dress and adjusted her hat back on her head as propriety demanded while the woman came barreling up the path to them. It was only at the last moment that she wiggled her toes in the dirt and realized she left her shoes by the lake.
“Celestyna!” The permanent scowl was no surprise. “Half the morning wasted looking for you and just look at the condition in which you present yourself. A Lady of your position should be cognizant of appearance at all times.”
“Not a Lady.” She muttered under her breath.
An angry grunt, “I refuse to hear this nonsense. Now get along straight home. Your tutors have wasted half the day.”
The finger of doom came out and pointed toward town so she stamped her foot in a show of defiance before marching off toward home. Behind her, the conversation continued without her.
“And you Andrew Michael McCall, what do you think you are doing out here walking in your skin without permission? Your father felt you were old enough to learn to guard that young lady and that means even from herself. The shame on our village if it’s learned that a McCall wolf is giving in to his baser side.”
The voice faded behind her as she forced herself to continue home. It wasn’t fair. She was trying so hard to be good, but she just couldn’t do it. She truly loved living with her grandfather. At home, he was loving and kind and grampa. But as Sheriff, he spent most of his time maintaining the laws and there everything was about appearance and perception.
Sighing she bent down to pick up a long stick that had fallen onto the path. It was smooth from one of the trees that lost it’s bark this time of year. Using it as a walking stick she continued on her path. Living in Beacon was nice, but it just wasn’t home. Papa had pressed upon her the importance of living in the border zones between Principalities. At twelve years old she is expected to live here until she can begin her apprenticeship at fourteen. But it’s stuffy and boring.
And it wasn’t right that Andy was in trouble. She asked him to wear his skin. Back in the capitol zones wolves ran and shifted as they pleased and were accepted as normal. At seventeen, she would expect his best weapon to be the wolf. Why can’t the other lands just accept them as they are?
“Good day, Miss Stilinski!” Old man Corrant called from his wagon. “Aren’t you a sight today. Brings to mind the way your father and young McCall were always…”
“Enough of your nonsense Presley Corrant.” The voice cut him off from behind her. “The child has enough to learn without you filling her head with nonsense.”
“Well Mistress Markovitch, I would say if it is one to judge nonsense, you would be the right one to know.” He winked at Celestyna and tipped his hat, “Good day, My Lady.” And traveled on.
Celestyna took off for home at a pace not the least bit ladylike as she giggled at Master Corrant’s antics. As she rounded the back of the estate she briefly registered the blue flag denoting the Sheriff in residence and rushed inside to greet him.
“Grandpa! I’m home. Now I know Madame Markovitch has probably already been witching about on me about missing my lessons, but the sun was shining and the woods were calling. I took grandmother’s book to the lake and had a wonderful picnic with Andy. And I did practice my herb-lore. Andy made me when I almost stepped in wolfsbane. By the way, someone is growing it illegally out there. I only found two patches but I marked them for your men. And then we had a nice time wandering the northeastern path to that meadow over the hill. I’m just certain the tree in my dreams is in that direction.”
“Wow! She’s definitely a Stilinski.” A man in a gold and white tunic stood next to a woman in a matching dress. He had dark hair and a crooked jaw but held himself with a power she easily recognized as the wolf. The woman smiled tightly, not speaking.
Her grandfather looked her up and down before sighing slightly and then chuckling, “Alpha McCall, Lady Argent, may I present my granddaughter, emissary in training, Lady Celestyna Stilinski.” At his brief nod, she curtsied as she had been taught, only briefly stumbling but catching herself before she could lose position.
“We have been overseeing Argent lands, but now that I have returned, welcome to Beacon, Lady Stilinski. You are given our approval to reside within our territories. But I must insist that you practice no magic without my express approval. And I will thank you to avoid compromising any of my wolves. We are civilized in this territory and I think you will find that it is a better way for all wolves.” With that, they said their goodbyes and left.
“Grampa, I just don’t understand. Why do the McCall’s deny the wolf? Papa always says that a wolf that denies his true nature weakens himself and the pack. And, a weak pack makes for a weak territory. As Emissary it is my place to ensure that the balance between instinct and humanity is maintained just as it is the Alpha’s place to maintain order and security for the pack. That’s the way it is back home with the Hale pack.”
“Come here, sweetheart.” She snuggled up against him in his chair as he settled in to talk. “Your father and Alpha McCall grew up here in Beacon, back when it was still Hale lands. It was darker times then and we fought a constant battle to keep our lands safe. But the Hales were strong and good protectors. Scott McCall was recruited at 14 to learn the warrior’s path, and he did well. But it pulled at their friendship. During his first battle Scott was badly wounded and his commander, Peter Hale, gifted him with the bite.”
She shifted, enthralled with any story of her father when young. “The Bite is a Gift to be cherished.” She recited.
“Honor the Gift,” Grampa finished with her. “Yes, but Scott’s father was enraged. He would rather his son die than be a werewolf. He took his wife and left for Argent lands where wolves are banned from walking in their skin. The Hales tried to take him in, but he was angry and blamed them all. Your father tried to help him and be the voice of reason, but it was not to be.”
He hugged her hard then turned her around to face him. “One night as the moon shined full and wolves ran in the forest, your papa dreamed of a tree in distress in the forest. He said it was so real that he just had to find it. He ran past the wolves who tried to scare him off and intimidate him. He followed his dream and found a clearing in the woods where the largest tree stood. A woodsman was prepared to chop the tree but your papa stopped him. When the man tried to harm him a black wolf stepped forward to protect him. The man asked by what right he had to stop him. Your papa replied, ‘By my choice and my will this tree will be protected until my last breath.”
Her eyes wide and mouth open she listened raptly as he continued, “Then the wolf left his skin and stood as man. ‘As he protects the tree so do I protect him.’ Then they joined hands and the wolf’s eyes flashed from blue to red just as a wall of flame ignited between them and the woodsman. ‘Who are you?’ the woodsman asked them. ‘Alpha Derek Hale and Spark Stiles Stilinski,’ was their reply. And the woodsman ran away to spread the story of the new Alpha and Spark.”
“Was that when Papa got his true name?”
“Yes, it was.”
“But I don’t understand why papa and Alpha McCall stopped being friends.”
“You have to understand honey, people don’t always see what’s important. All Alpha McCall could see is that your papa was abandoning him like everyone else. He was accepted into the Hale pack. He was protected, and nurtured, and trained to take his place as Hale Emissary. Scott just couldn’t understand at the time that he could have been a part of all that if he hadn’t pushed them all away.”
“And now? Does he understand now?”
“Maybe he does. But after he became Alpha he made choices. He has pointed his pack and this territory on a path from which there may be no return. It’s one of those lessons that you can study all you want, but you only learn when you experience it.”
He was silent for a while, contemplating the past. “When Derek was called to the Capitol to take over he took Stiles with him as Emissary. Stiles and Scott argued and as far as I know, that was the last time they spoke.”
She sighed deeply, thinking through what she’s learned. Then a thought occurred. “Is that the same tree I see in my dreams? The one papa saved?”
“I suspect it is. The tree is special and will only be found when you are ready. People have spent lifetimes searching for it. Just wait for it to call you. When you know you can delay no longer, then go with my blessing to find it.” He gave her a kiss on the forehead and sent her off to bathe before dinner.
Later that night she awoke from a dream and stared out her window toward the forest. “One day, when you need me, call and I will come. I promise. On that day Spark Styna Stilinski will answer your call.” And as if her promise had been heard a soft breeze was felt and a single leaf floated in to land on her pillow.