"We got this," Sally repeated, sounding anything but confident.
Costin tried the doorknob of the first room that he knew to be Damion and Adrian's. It opened smoothly into a dark interior. He grinned. "Good to go, ladies." He motioned them inside. "I'll check the other two and be on my way. You two hurry, alright?"
Sally and Jacque nodded as they began moving into the dark room.
Jacque made a beeline for the closet while Sally started stripping the beds.
"I really think we should be wearing gloves for this." Sally cringed as she pulled the sheets off and rolled them into a tight ball.
"Hey, leave one of those sheets unrolled. We can put all the clothes in a pile on the sheet and throw it out all together," Jacque hollered from the closet.
Jacque came out of the closet, arms full of clothes."Let's do this."
Sally laughed. She went to the window and pushed it open. Then she nudged the screen out and it fell three stories below, where Cynthia and Costin stood.
Costin waved and motioned for her to start throwing stuff down. Sally grinned and gave a thumbs up. She grabbed the first set of bedding and tossed it out. She looked down and saw Cynthia gather it up and put it in a wheelbarrow.
From there on out they worked like a well-oiled machine. Jacque ran around grabbing anything that could possibly cover a body part, Sally threw it out the window, and Costin and Cynthia stowed it in the wheelbarrow.
Five minutes later, they moved onto the next room.
Sally started pulling the sheets off the beds again as Jacque busted out a whispered version of “Heartless.” Sally joined in as they worked.
On the third and final room, Sally leaned out the window as she dropped the final article of clothing. "How's the bonfire looking?" she whispered as loud as she could.
Costin grinned. "It's going to be epic!"
She giggled as Jacque pulled her back in. "Come on, Sal. We don't have time for flirting."
Sally's mouth dropped. "I so was not flirting."
"Just keep telling yourself that, sweetie. Maybe when Jen becomes a nun it will be true." She laughed as she tugged Sally out of the room and down the stairs. They hurried in the direction of the gym.
"I wonder how far they've gotten in the game?" Sally asked.
"It shouldn't take long. Jen said they were playing five card draw. That's a pretty quick game of poker." Jacque quickened her pace as she thought about how Jen might be sitting there, trying to keep naked werewolves occupied.
They made it to the gym and snuck up to the door windows. Jacque peeked up quietly and nearly died laughing.
"What? What's going on?" Sally yanked on Jacque's sleeve.
Shaking with silent giggles, she pointed to the window.
Sally quietly looked through the window's edge and quickly covered her mouth at what she saw. Marianna and Crina sat – looking rather put out – in their bathing suits. Across from them, four disgruntled males sat with nothing but socks on. They had taken the pillows and laid them across their laps. Jen didn't look much happier as she pulled her shirt over her head. Although, she still had her pants on.
Jacque jerked her phone out and texted Costin to get his butt here and help go door to door to announce the party. Sally and Jacque took off at a run and nearly collided with said wolf.
"Whoa! So we're good?" He held the fliers in his hands and handed each girl a stack.
Jacque nodded. "Let's hurry. Have you seen any sign of Decebel?"
Costin shook his head. "No, so we had better move our butts."
They all took off at a run, headed for the stairs. They made it to the second floor and immediately started knocking on doors. As they opened they smiled and pushed fliers into the hands of the occupants.
When they got to the end of the second floor and were on their way to the third, Jacque sent Jen a text, letting her know that the animals were on the move. Male and female wolves were already heading towards the gym. Then she quickly wrote Cynthia a text that said, “baby, light my fire,” and snickered as she hit send.
Jacque and Sally had gone ahead of Costin, trying to get out as many fliers as possible before the inevitable happened.
Costin finally caught up with them and took the rest of the fliers. "You two go on and get out of here. I have a bad feeling."
Jacque looked alarmed. "What's wrong?"
He pushed them. "Just go. And hurry."
The girls didn't question him again, but joined the throngs of Canis lupis walking down the stairs.
Costin handed out the last flier and took off. He'd made it to the final staircase when a hand suddenly grabbed his collar.
"Why is there a fire on the front lawn?"
"Oh. Hey, Beta." Costin laughed nervously. "They let you out. Was it for good behavior, or -"
Decebel took a step towards him and growled, "Answer the question, Costin."
"The fire – okay, well. You see, what happened – what it is... Shit." He groaned and decided he'd be better off just giving it up. "Jen's burning the clothes, linens, and so on of the unmated Serbia males," Costin finally spit out.
Decebel stared at him like he had grown a second head.
"Where is my mate now?" Decebel's voice was calm, too calm.
"Um, getting the rest of their clothes."
"From, uh, the, um, males." Costin was trying to stall as long as he could, hoping Jen would already be out of the room.
"How is she getting the clothes from them, Costin." Decebel's eyes were glowing and his canines descended.
"It's kind of a funny story, actually. See, Jen, Sally, Crina, Marianna, and Jacque -"
"HOW!" Decebel growled.
"They're playing strip poker." Costin took several steps back as his Beta fought for control of his wolf. "If it makes you feel better, Jen is winning. I think." In hindsight, he decided that maybe that last part wasn't really helpful.
Decebel reached out and grabbed him by the scruff of his neck and pushed him forward. "Take me to her."
Jen heard her phone let out a little beep. She laid her current hand of cards face down on the floor in front of her, and started to stretch, lifting her arms above her head.
"Boys, I need a break for just a sec. How about another shot?"