Chapter 1 — The boundary line, the marriage between a girl and a wolf. Part 6
Both of them turned to look at him, after which Shiro then nodded as though nothing ever happened, followed by his brother too, albeit reluctantly. The wind disappeared from Silent Steps’ body and the shadow covering Shiro fell off as if melting away. Only white and gray fur was visible now.
Both scoffed at each other and looked away.
“You are following our father’s orders more diligently than ever.”
This time it was Silent Steps who took on a belittling tone.
“Yes, because I don’t have enough strength to kill him.”
I walked over to the sarcastic Shiro and, taking his leg into my hands, examined his wound.
It was deep—the borders of the wound were dangling like slime and blood continued to gush out from the freshly exposed flesh. I grimaced a bit at that sight.
“Are you okay?” I asked him silently.
He nodded slightly. Then I took my hands away from his leg and grasped the handkerchief I had wordlessly prepared for him.
The wound itself was sliced neatly, so it shouldn’t take too long to heal.
Sensing someone staring at me, I lifted my head.
Shiro’s father was silently watching me, and I could also see Silent Steps and the other wolves staring at me, annoyed.
The whole pack was hostile towards me, but that had no effect on me. I was used to these kinds of situations.
I folded my arms and glared at the wolf who seemed to be the leader of the pack, Shiro’s father.
It was like a rule of thumb for conflicts. If you wanted to remain safe, don’t retaliate. If you hated defeat, just glare at them.
“My child, I will have to banish you from the forest.” Then he turned around to the pack. “From now on, we will have no involvement with them for as long as it keeps the forest safe,” he said as his eyes surveyed the pack.
There wasn’t a single objection.
Shiro sighed, seemingly bored, and struck the ground with his forelegs.
After having said that, he turned around and started walking away. I followed alongside him while combing my disheveled hair with my hands.
“Son, do you really intend to stay with that human for the rest of your life?”
Shiro didn’t turn around to answer him.
“I will remain with her until the very moment this world collapses.”
“Very well then.” There was a hint of joy in his voice. “You found yourself a really good wife.”
I turned around to look at him for a moment. He was smiling, just as how any father would smile. That was probably what some would call familial love. Something I never experienced.
“You,” I asked him. “What is your name?”
The wolves growled at my rude manner of inquiry. I sneered at them.
Letting my long hair sway in the wind, I shot a quick glance at the wolves.
No matter how hostile they seemed to be, not a single one came to attack me. Not even Silent Steps, who was glaring at me the most.
“They call me the King of the Forest” He answered in a self-deprecating tone.
“I’m Tsukagi Saki, pleased to make your acquaintance.”
“…You possess a strong soul. It’s a shame you had to be human.”
I couldn’t tell if he was joking or being serious. Shrugging, I combed my hair back and turned around once again.
“Congratulations on your marriage.”
Shiro didn’t say anything. Likewise, I also remained silent.
We left that place and as soon as we were inside the forest, I hugged his back.
His white fur received me without offering any sort of resistance, giving me a sense of relief from the feeling of being close to him and it finally calmed me down. But before I could resume acting normally, there was something that I had to ask, though I didn’t know how to go about it.
Silently, he let me mount him again and we ran through the forest.
“Was that fine?” I muttered from his back.
“I don’t mind,” came his faint answer. “I was an anomaly. From the very beginning, there was never a place for me in the forest.”
A lone wolf. A single silver wolf.
He propelled his legs even faster. Soon, the sound of the wind was as prominent as the darkness. The wind was a bother, but I welcomed the darkness. It was the first time I felt this way.