Wolfsbane (Page 24)

“We still have to be smart about it.” Marco stood up and paced around the council room that was packed, not only with all of his advisors, but all of Zack’s advisors as well. Zack and his entire clan had come to help as soon as they learned of Marco’s plan.

Marco had declared an all-out war on the Hunters, and further declared that it was time to end this thing once and for all. His desire for peace and need for privacy all these years to escape detection by the outside world had forced his clan to simply defend themselves from the Hunters’ increasingly vicious attacks. Elias Winters and his psychotic behavior had finally driven him too far. They would attack the complex and destroy it, along with Winters and anyone else in his command who resisted. If any of the Hunters wished to put down their arms, and becomeWerekin, they’d be spared. Otherwise, the wolves would take no prisoners. They hadn’t started this war, but they could no longer stand by and allow their families to be in danger. The wolves had had enough.

Deciding against the safe rooms in the basement, Marco had moved all of the older pets and the children to Zack’s lodge, along with some of the older men and teenaged boys to act as protection. Everyone else would be in on the fight—even the pets who wanted to help. This last provision had been hard won for Logan and Nicky and the others, but an impassioned plea by Evan had finally turned the tide in their favor. It was his mate who had been injured, he argued, and he was going in after him, regardless of what anybody thought. When Logan, Nicky, Gabe and all the other human pets backed him, the wolves had finally given in.

“Like I said, we have to be smart about this thing. They have plenty of firepower so we’re not going to rush in, guns blasting.”

“We have a plan,” Casey said confidently. “We’ve had this in mind for a long time, but we were hoping we wouldn’t have to use it. We still want to avoid exposure, so we’re going to have to make this look good to any outsiders. That’s one reason we’ll take no prisoners. Each person who surrenders must become Werekin. All the feral soldiers will be given blood as well. It looks like our community is about to experience a huge growth spurt.”

“What’s the plan, Casey?” Evan asked quietly. He was standing between Logan and Nicky and this was one of the first days he’d wanted to be around other people. The thought of what Brett was going through, and not knowing if he were alive or dead had taken its toll on him, and he was pale and had lost a lot of weight, even though both Ian and Marco had been feeding him as often as he would allow.

Casey turned toward him.“We’re going to use the tunnel that Ian, Rory, Nicky and Logan used the night they helped Ian escape from the complex.”

Logan frowned.“Surely they would have destroyed that tunnel by now.”

“No, they didn’t,” Casey replied.“According to our sources, they did seal it off with a heavily locked and bolted steel door at the end that comes out on the mountainside, and they have it guarded now, but they kept it as an escape route for themselves if their compound walls are ever breached.”

“So how can we get inside if it’s so secured?” Logan asked.

“Simple. Our guys on the inside.When we send the signal, they’ll overpower the guards and open the door.We’ll be there to waltz right in,” Casey said.

Meanwhile, to keep their attention focused somewhere else, Zack and I will take a small group of four and come in the front gate,” Marco said. “We’ll be hiding in Dr. Cornsilk’s car and come in right under their noses. When he lets us out, two of us will go immediately to Elias Winter’s quarters and take him prisoner. If he resists, we’ll kill him. Another two will go to the other general’s quarters and secure that area. We’ll cut off the head of the snake right away and hope the body flounders. Our boys will be coming in the tunnel and going from building to building. We’ll go in quietly and have the element of surprise on our side. It’ll be just like the Trojan horse.” Casey turned to Rory.“Rory, I’d like you to lead a small group to the prison cells and find Brett, and anyone else they may be holding.” He cast a quick glance at Evan.“From what I understand about his condition, you may have to subdue him, because I don’t think he’ll know you.Take at least two more wolves with you in case he puts up a fight.” He turned to Evan and smiled at him.“Yes, I know,Evan, you’ll want to be with them too. Of course, and you can take Nicky with you.”

Nicky frowned.“But I thought I could go with Marco...”

“Not a chance, baby,” Marco said. “Where I’ll be is too damn dangerous, and besides, Evan will need you.No, I’ll take Zack and Ian and...”

“And me,” Logan said quietly. “I have the right to be there, Marco, when you go after my father. I’ll be able to keep up just fine.” He glanced over at Ian as if to gauge his support, but Ian was smiling warmly at him.

Marco considered it gravely for a moment. The pack had never willingly put a pet in such jeopardy before, but Logan had a point. After all the things his father had done to him, he did deserve a chance.“All right,” he said, nodding.“We’ll make sure our contacts are in place and we’ll attack at dawn tomorrow. Any questions?” He looked around the table, but found only determined faces staring back at him.“All right, get some rest. See you in the morning.”

Logan was pressed up t ight against Ian’s big body in the trunk of the doctor’s car. He could feel the slow, steady heartbeat of his mate,and it calmed him. Soon now, they’d be passing through the checkpoint at the gate, and he had to be ready. Zack and Marco were folded up between the back seat and the floor board under some blankets, and he knew it had to be uncomfortable for them.The guards rarely stopped Dr. Cornsilk’s car, but if they did, they had to be ready.Logan’s finger rested lightly on the safety of his assault rifle as he felt the car slow to a stop. He could hear some muffled conversation and a snatch of a short laugh. Then the car started up again, and he breathed a deep sigh of relief.He felt Ian’s hand on his thigh, gripping him tightly in reassurance, letting him know he was there and would protect him with his life.

Logan felt the same way toward Ian and pressed his body back into him for a second. He felt a soft kiss graze his temple and smiled to himself. How many other soldiers about to go into battle stayed up half the night making love, he wondered? The time spent with his lover had strengthened and sustained him through the night, and he felt ready to face whatever he had to this morning, no matter how difficult.

The car came to a stop and in a few seconds, the trunk opened so they could crawl out. They stood stretching for a moment before following Marco’s hand signals and moving into the building that housed the generals. Marco had the codes to the door and punched them in quickly. Once inside, Marco and Zack nodded to show they were headed to the upstairs quarters of Elias Winters’ next in command while Ian and Logan moved quietly to Winters’ door.

Breathing a quick prayer that Winters hadn’t changed his keypad code, Logan punched it in , and they flung open the door and dived inside, each one rolling to either side of the door before jumping back to their feet. As expected, Winters had heard the slight tones of the keypad and had been ready for them, firing the pistol he kept on his night stand and missing Logan by inches. Logan had actually felt the breeze of the bullet as it passed his face.

Before Logan could make another move, Ian had fired, striking Winters in the chest. He fell back against the pillows and lay still, his face drained of color. Logan approached the bed cautiously and stood over his father. He was aware of shouts coming from the hall and Ian running to secure the doorway. Winters opened his eyes and stared directly at Logan.

“You,” he said bitterly. “I might have known it would be you, you bastard.” “Your bastard,” Logan said quietly.

Winters gave a short bark of laughter, but Logan could see the light fading from his eyes. “I wonder if that’s even true. Your mother always was a whore.”

“Father, don’t...”

“Don’t what? Speak the truth? She was a filthy whore, and I’m glad I killed her. You didn’t really think she died in any car accident, did you? She wanted to protect her little sissy boy. Well,I showed her and I’ll show you too! Nobody gets the best of Elias Winters! Nobody!” He raised the gun he still had clutched in his hand and pointed it straight at Logan’s heart.

Before Winters could make a move, a red spot of blood blossomed in the center of his forehead, as Ian killed him with a single shot. He pulled Logan into his arms and pressed his face against his chest.“I’m sorry, sweetheart, but he had it coming.”

“I know,” Logan said softly. “I thought I could do it, but...”

“No one expected you to—nobody’s that strong.” Ian turned him away from the bed. “C’mon. let’s go find Marco.” They found Marco coming down the stairs, pushing the general, his hands tied in front of him. Marco looked a little shaken, and Zack was behind them speaking urgently on his radio.

“Are you all right, Marco?” Ian noticed the paleness on Marco’s face and was a little alarmed.

“Some bastard surprised me on the way to the general’s bedroom. Came out of nowhere and jabbed me with a hyprodermic needle.”

“A hypodermic needle? What was in it?”

“No idea. Not poison, thank God, or I’d be dead by now. Probably some of their crazy concoctions—like most of them, it didn’t work. I’m fine. I’m sure it was nothing, just made me feel a little woozy.”

“Yeah, and he didn’t live long enough to tell us much. I’m afraid I just reacted when I saw him stabbing at Marco. I killed the son-of-abitch.” He looked remarkably unrepentant as he turned to Marco. “They’re inside the compound, Marco,” Zack said with obvious excitement. They’ve already secured two buildings with minimum casualties and Hunters are surrendering all overthe place.”