With an ease that he'd been born with, Lucius transformed in seconds into his wolf form. He kept a sharp eye on the gathering of rogue wolves that emerged from the forest, their hot breath misting before them in the cold winter air. He'd seen them before and many more just like them. He knew that their arrival wasn't just happenstance. They desired entrance into the territory he was guarding. But they weren't going to get it, no matter how many times they tried. As one of the keepers of the veil, it was his duty to keep them, and those just like them, out, away from the decent society of wolves.
After a nod from the leader of the group, the rogue wolves surrounded him on all sides.
Lucius growled a menacing warning, gathering his strong back legs beneath him as he made ready for the impending assault. He knew that when they attacked him, they would converge all at once.
Before they could make the first move, however, he threw himself on the nearest wolf with a loud and viscous snarl. He took the wolf down, digging his claws deep into the earth beneath him as he tore his throat out. The instant his first opponent was no longer a threat, he whipped around to take on the next.
He took down the wolves, one by one, until, at last, the only resistance left was their leader.
Lucius walked around the leader, intent on disregarding the intense pain from the injuries the fallen wolves had inflicted on him, especially the deep slash he'd received across his throat as he drew closer to the leader.
The other wolf's gaze blazed a deep shade of red as he watched Lucius move steadily closer and closer.
He spoke to Lucius in his mind. "You have bested the others, but you will not defeat me."
The thought had barely formed in his mind when the rogue leapt at him, sinking his teeth into Lucius' throat. Lucius had expected the attack, had anticipated it and braced himself. He hadn't counted on the weakness from his wound slowing his reactions, though. He leapt to counter the assault just a few seconds too late. The rogue managed to sink his teeth into his flesh. Fortunately, his counter move had prevented him from clamping down on his jugular. If that had been the case, that would have been the end of him.
As it was, the rogue still managed to nick the artery and tear out a chunk of flesh as Lucius twisted away, whipped his head around, and countered by sinking his teeth into the throat of the rogue. His timing and speed were better that time. He managed to clamp his own jaws firmly on the rogue's jugular, using the force of his jaws like a vice, slowly but surely cutting off the blood and oxygen supply until the rogue began to weaken.
Just when he thought he had the bastard, though, the rogue abruptly lurched away from him, managing to tear loose from Lucius' hold. He'd been feigning, Lucius realized furiously, and he'd fallen for it, allowed his own weakness to encourage him to loosen his hold before he should have.
Fortunately, it wasn't a fatal mistake. Once free, the leader of the rogue pack scampered off, whimpering pitifully along the way.
Lucius felt triumph seeing the leader of the rogues run away with his tail tucked between his legs. But his sense of victory was short-lived as he swayed on all fours. He'd been critically injured on his throat and the leader had gone for that very injury. He'd gone for the kill. Although his kind healed quickly, he wouldn't be able to fight off another attack if any more unwelcome wolves came up any time soon. He had to go.
He took off in the direction of another keeper. He had to keep telling himself that he had to walk, he had to keep going, no matter how bad he felt. Protocol said that if he was badly injured that he needed to get another keeper to take his post. But as his blood continued to ebb from his wound, he grew weaker and weaker and more confused as he walked through the woods, trying to reach out with his mind to another wolf. After what seemed like hours, he stopped and took a look around, unsure of his surroundings. He had one last thought before he passed out--the area alpha was going to kill him for not being at his post.