As written in Caitlyn Whelan’s journal…
I stood before the leader of the Sept of the Second City. He told me I had been called to another Sept. I asked why, but he told me even he did not know why. I packed the few things I had left: my family Bible, the dedicated gold cross necklace my foster mother gave me, my dedicated clothes, my fang dagger, a few things of makeup, my smartphone, my journal with a couple pens and pencils, and of course, a few womanly things in my backpack.
Before I left, the Sept leader gave me a bankcard. It was all they could muster from what my parents left behind. Thankfully, he said I would likely not have to worry about a basic lifestyle, but anything more would be on my own to accomplish. This was their final gift to me and all they could do for me.
They gave me a bus ticket and wished me well. The trip was both boring and anxious as I waited to find out why I was arriving. I was dropped off near the border of California. I waited at the bus station until an older pick-up truck arrived with older man bearing a scarred face. He motioned me over and told me to get in.
We drove for what seemed like hours and he leered at me several times during the trip in a way I knew as a girl what he wanted. I tried to be polite though, considering I knew nothing of him. I just smiled and tried keep my eyes out the window.
We finally arrived at the destination: in the middle of nowhere. He pointed me in the general direction of where I was supposed to be going and told me to start hiking. I thanked him and left with the uncomfortable feeling he was staring at me as I walked away.
Walking for what seemed like forever, I finally ran into someone along the way. He was teenager just like me with dark hair and steely blue eyes. I nodded politely and we continued walking together silently. Eventually, others joined up with us as we walked until there were seven of us.
We eventually arrived at a clearing where we met a man who looked like he was in his early 30’s. He announced his name as Ryan O’Reilly and told us to follow him. We followed Ryan until we arrived at a cabin. Outside the cabin was a large, bald man chopping wood whom Ryan introduced as Kyle. I smiled politely at him as I walked by, but one of the people I was traveling with motioned to Kyle in a way that angered him. He charged at the one who did it as Ryan motioned for us to get back. A brief fight ensued as Kyle nearly beat the guy to death. I wanted to help him, but I was told to leave him where he lay and go into the cabin by another man named Keptner, better known as Crafty.
We brought our stuff in and chose the beds we wanted. The guy who had been beaten finally made it inside after nearly a half an hour. It was getting dark so we went to sleep that night. The next morning we awoke to Ryan, Kyle, and Crafty were waiting for us at the table in cabin with some McDonald’s. We ate and after an awkward silence, Bjorn introduced himself. We then took turns introducing ourselves; though I was nearly last since I was nervous about the whole affair. Our group consisted of Bjorn “Born Twice” Nordholm, Luke “Rage Heart” Deboi, John Whitmeyer, Miguel O’Hare, William Scott, Eli Yoder, and of course myself, Caitlyn Whelan.
Crafty proceeded to tell us the story of the White Howlers and their bond with the Fianna. He then told us about fall of the White Howlers and the disappearance of Lion due to his shaming. We had been called because we were the last of a bloodline connected to the White Howlers through kinship. The Sept was to be given to us and only White Lion, the Sept totem, would accept us as leaders. Crafty stated once the Sept was in order, he, Kyle, and Ryan would be returning to their Septs.
After explaining why we were called, Crafty took us to meet a few of our kinfolk. Although he had not spoken, we already knew of Walter Foss, the man who brought us to the road by the cabin. He was a survivalist and had instructions to teach us any survival skills we would need considering many like me had no experience in the wilderness.
We were next taken to meet Clifford McDorn. He ran the lodge near the cabin and gave us the rundown and rules we were to abide by. He seemed like a nice person and he didn’t ask much of us. Just that we make sure to announce our comings and goings with him and to feel free to donate any excess meat we get from hunting.
Next, we met Gina Blessing. She was around our age and very friendly. She had her own car, an SUV, and offered to take us anywhere we needed to go provided she had the time. I liked her very much considering she was the first person not over 30 we had meet.
Finally, we met Lindsey Carol. She dressed very provocatively and I felt myself feeling awkward around her since it contrasted so much with my personal style and beliefs. She offered to help the pack get certain items like liquor if we wanted since she works a job at a local liquor store. Eli and Luke immediately hit on her, which I found not surprising at all.
By the time we had met all of the kinfolk and gotten settled in, night was falling. Crafty told us to meet him, Kyle, and Ryan out in the forest. There we shifted to Lupus form and went on a group hunt. I found myself having a lot of fun chasing a large deer. I tried to take it down, but ultimately it was Luke who did the beast in. Adhering to the Litany, we let Crafty take the first of the kill, but he only nibbled before we got our turn. I actually found it very good tasting considering it was my first time ever doing something like this.
After the hunt, we made our way back to the back of the lodge where Gina and Lindsey were waiting. Most of the guys didn’t have dedicated clothing like me, so they had to basically wrap up with some robes provided by Clifford from the lodge. Lindsey had brought alcohol and passed it around, however I politely declined since it wasn’t something I cared for.
After most of the crew started to get rather drunk, Eli and Luke had an almost brotherly dispute about who would have sex with Lindsey. Luke went first, and then followed by Eli. Bjorn went off with Gina into another room while Miguel, William, and I sat around. Eventually, Walter arrived, clearly drunk. He tried to ask me if I wanted to have sex, but I politely declined. It wasn’t really anything about him per se, it was just I didn’t want have sex with someone I didn’t really know and my last experience with it ended with my pregnancy and the father of the child denying it. He nodded and said it was okay and left out the back of the lodge.