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Hunter (character)

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I value loyalty in a leader. I value loyalty in a mate. You've shown none. Of course I won't accept you as my mate, Hunter. I reject you with every part of my dog-spirit.
Moon to Hunter in Moon's Choice, chapter 8


Hunter
Pawprint
Affiliations
Current:
Past:
Lone Dog[1]
Hunter's Pack,[2] Moon's Pack[3]
Description
Species
Breed
Gender
Dog
Great Dane mix[4]
Male
Names
Names Hunter: Hunter[3]

Leader: Unknown[2]
Lone Dog: Hunter[1]

Family
Family Unknown
Rank Positions
Rank Lone Dog[1]
Status
Status
Alive
Book Appearances
Living Moon's Choice
Dead N/A

Hunter is a burly,[5] big gray-and-brown male[3] Great Dane mix.[6]

History

In the Novellas Arc

Moon's Choice

Hunter is first seen returning to camp from a hunting patrol with Rush, Meadow, and Fly. Moon feels slightly nervous as Hunter's eyes catch hers, and he lifts his head slightly with pride; in his jaws is a plump rabbit. Moon dips her head in a solemn greeting, and Hunter gives a low whine of reply in his throat. Moon thinks that he is very strong and the Pack's best hunter, and she is glad that her parent-dogs chose him for her. It is noted that Moon sometimes wonders what it would be like to run the Pack with Hunter as her Beta, and she predicts that is must be exciting. Moon ignores her nervousness, thinking that it is silly, as she would be lucky to have such a capable mate, and that her parent-dogs had chosen carefully. She decides to show gratitude to Alpha and Beta, and favor to Hunter. Moon is slightly annoyed at Star's negative thoughts about her future mate, because although she thinks that Hunter isn't the easiest dog to talk to and can sometimes be stern and almost sullen, she believes that they would learn to get along. It is noted that the farm-dog feels guilty for even thinking slightly critically of him, as she feels like it is disloyalty to her Mother-Dog and Father-Dog. Moon feels certain that she and Hunter would make a perfect match in the end.
Alpha emerges from the den and waits as Hunter pads up to him and drops the rabbit at his forepaws. He praises Hunter, asking if the day was good, and Hunter replies that it was and lashes his tail. He explains that there was plentiful prey, although some was too fast for the rest of the patrol. Moon is slightly startled at Hunter's criticism, since Rush, Meadow, and Fly are all capable hunters, although this isn't the first time he has downgraded other dogs. Alpha says that they still all did a fine job, and admires Hunter's rabbit, commenting that the Pack would eat well that night. Hunter gives his Alpha a nod of acknowledgement and steps back, eyes shining with pride at his catch.
As the Pack eats that night, Alpha and Beta eat first and take Hunter's rabbit between them. As soon as they are finished, Hunter paces forward and selects a squirrel for himself. Moon decides that she can forgive the arrogant tilt of his head and aura of satisfaction surrounding him, as he had done the most to provide the feast. Moon watches him brightly and approvingly, ignoring the unease she feels at his cockiness, and thinks that he is her future mate, and that it is good that she is strong and confident. Star mutters to Moon that he thinks too much of himself and asks if she really wants to be mated with him, causing Moon to be irritated that her litter-sister is reawakening her own uncertainties. She quietly growls that the Pack needs strong leaders like Hunter. However, Moon glances at her parent-dogs who laugh together at a joke, and wonders if she would choose Hunter if she wasn't destined to be the Pack's Alpha.
When the Pack goes to their border to learn about the other Pack near their territory, Moon notes that her parent-dogs are wise and work well together, and she thinks that she and Hunter can be like that. Moon's Pack meets the Wild Pack, and when their Alpha says that they are thinking of having that place be their territory, Hunter opens his mouth to speak, but Alpha gives him a stern look and he falls silent. The half-wolf states that by Forest Law they are allowed to fight them for the territory, causing Hunter to bare his fangs.
Fiery suggests that the Packs work together and split the prey on the land. Moon's Pack discuss what they should do, and when Alpha and Beta agree that they they should try to plan, Hunter objects that they came to challenge them for their territory. His ears swivel toward Alpha in surprise, and he questions if they really want the other pack living right next to them and hunting with them. Moon suggests that it is better to make an alliance, as they are strong and she would rather hunt with them then guard borders against them. Hunter bristles, face rigid with disapproval, but Moon is indifferent, and Mulch agrees with her. Alpha and Beta consult each other by exchanging long glances, and Moon wistfully thinks that she can't imagine being like that with Hunter. However, she reminds herself that she doesn't know, and one day they might have a connection like that of her parent-dogs.
After Beta and Star's death, when Alpha announces that Moon will lead the Pack while they battle the sickness, the dogs have a Great Howl. After, Moon understands the wisdom in her parent-dogs choosing Hunter as her intended mate. She thinks that she needs him, and he loves leading, and can organize hunting and patrolling while she tends to the sick dogs. She believes that at last they will learn to be a team.
Hunter is seen sitting with Rush and Meadow outside the hunters' den, and as he glances toward her, Moon realizes with pride and admiration how strong he is. She is about to make her suggestion, but before she can speak, Hunter has gotten to his paws. He stares at her, his expression less than welcoming, and Moon briefly falters. Hunter informs Moon that he, Rush, and Meadow are leaving the Pack, causing Moon to gape at him, shocked. Hunter's voice is cool and unapologetic as he says that it is the smart choice. He explains that it would be stupid to stick around and get sick, so they will make a new, strong Pack with healthy Packmates. Hunter tells Moon that he wants her with them, and the two can be Alpha and Beta, just as they were meant to be. Moon wants to bark at him furiously, but she can't speak out of shock and disgust.
Finally, Moon chokes out if he wants to abandon the Pack when it needs him most, but he hunches his shoulders and states that it isn't a Pack anymore, as it is too weak to survive. Moon furiously questions if he would even turn his back on her Father-Dog, who promoted him and was so kind to him. She announces that she won't leave with Hunter, and will never abandon her Pack. Hunter stares at Moon for a moment, and she hopes that her words hadn't struck him, as he can't deny the law of the Pack and will of the Spirit Dogs.
Moon thinks that Hunter would realize he was wrong, see his mistake, and change his mind, but he only turns with a dismissive flick of his tail. He coldly says that in that case she is a stupid dog, and will get sick and die with the others. He goes on that he, Rush, and Meadow will live and be strong, and says a farewell to Moon. He wishes her good luck, contemptuously growling that luck is all she has left to help her, and with that he turns and walks away.
When Moon waits for a hunting patrol to return the next day, she notes that the Sun-Dog has traveled a full day's journey since Hunter, Rush, and Meadow had abandoned the Pack. She wonders how the Sun-Dog let the three do that to them.
After the coyote attack when Alpha dies, Moon gets sick, and she wonders if she should have gone with Hunter after all, as she hadn't helped the sick Pack by staying with them. She wonders if she should have gone while she could and saved the remainder of the Pack, and if she was foolish not to go with Hunter and the others. Moon falls asleep, and wakes to Fiery, who tries to assist her back to health. Moon realizes that Fiery is what her parent-dogs thought Hunter was, as he is strong, brave, and a natural leader. She thinks that he is also much more than Hunter ever was, and helped her pack in their worst trouble. She reflects that he is kind, brave, gentle, and strong, as well as loyal, which is something Hunter would never be.
A few days later, Snap is seen coming into the clearing from hunting, telling Moon that she would never guess who she found out there. Moon is surprised to see that Snap isn't alone, and recognizes the burly outline of the dog in the shade behind her. Moon notes that he is the last dog she had ever wanted to see again, and stiffly paces forward to meet him.
Moon coldly greets Hunter, and he airily says her name, commenting that he is glad to see that a few of his old Pack managed to survive. Moon thinks that she must not bite him, and questions on why he is back. Hunter replies that he is glad that she, Snap, Mulch, and Whine escaped the sickness, but guesses that they have taken very bad losses. Moon stares at him without answering, and Hunter goes on that he realized where his duty lay. Snap growls that he is a bit too late. Moon sarcastically asks where his duties lie this time, and he hunches his shoulders, answering that it is obviously with Moon's Pack, and that he has returned to lead them. Moon and Snap are shocked, and Moon stares back at Hunter. The tilt of his head remains arrogant despite their scorn, and she asks if he is serious. Hunter states that of course he is, and taps his tail impatiently, claiming that he is stronger than all of them, and a better hunter. The large dog adds that they would be fools not to jump at the chance.
Moon notes that if Mulch hadn't came back from patrol just then, she might have really bitten Hunter, and she bitterly thinks that she would love to take off one of his cocky ears. Mulch also stares at his former Packmate, with no expression of welcome in his eyes. Moon wonders if Hunter had been expecting a slightly more enthusiastic reception.
Moon asks what happened to Rush and Meadow, to which Hunter casually replies that they got sick, and despite his efforts to look after them, they died. Moon is too shocked by his light tone to answer, but Mulch growls that that is funny because while on patrol, he ran into Rush and Meadow, who look very healthy for being 'dead'. Mulch sarcastically states that Hunter must have been taking better care of them than he thought. Hunter opens his jaws to say something, but Mulch interrupts that the two said they decided to leave Hunter, and snuck away in the night because they didn't like being bossed around by a dog without Pack-leading experience. Mulch recalls that Rush had used the words control wolf.
Hunter briefly looks lost for words and he swallows hard, looking furious and embarrassed. He then licks his chops and draws himself up, and, clearly acting as if Mulch didn't exist, tells Moon grandly hat her parent-dogs always wanted them to lead the Pack together. He reminds her that their dream was for them to be mates, and claims that they should honor that wish, offering Moon to be Beta to his Alpha. Moon is furious at the thought of being Beta to him, and though she had been enjoying his obvious discomfort, he has now riled her beyond disbelief. Moon's hackles rise, and she growls that she values loyalty in a leader and mate, which he has not shown. She snarls that she won't accept Hunter as her mate, and that she rejects him with every part of her dog-spirit.
Hunter's ears tighten against his skull, and Moon notices a glimpse of vicious light in his eyes that she had never noticed before. He snarls that she is a fool. Moon reflects that her parent-dogs always thought Hunter would be a strong leader because he was a strong fighter, but that she doesn't think they would choose him now if they witnessed his behavior. Moon says to Hunter that she might be a fool, but that although she is the Alpha of her Packmates, she does not choose for them. She tells the three that if they want to follow Hunter, she won't stop them, as he is strong and will lead them well. She goes on that they must make their own choices, and though she would never follow Hunter, she won't try to prevent them from going with him. Mulch, Omega, and Snap glance at each other, and the tan-and-white dog stares coldly at Hunter. She agrees that she values loyalty in a leader, and sweeps her gaze contemptuously from Hunter. She tells Moon that she will not follow Hunter and won't submit to him, and that Moon is her Alpha. Mulch doesn't even look at Hunter as he agrees with Moon and that she is his Alpha. With slanted eyes, he looks at Hunter, who is clenching his teeth in fury, and he says they are better off without a false dog like him.
Hunter rises to his four paws, trembling as he glares at Omega. The black dog looks uncomfortable, which Moon thinks must be because Hunter is several times his size, but he whines that he couldn't trust Hunter, and backs away from his former Packmate's furious eyes. He goes on that Hunter would abandon him immediately, and concludes that he is staying with Moon. Hunter growls and Moon steadily meets his gaze.
He snarls at her that she is pathetic, and that Omegas don't make choices, nor do hunt-dogs and Patrol Dogs vote for their leaders. He exclaims that her Pack is his, as her Father-Dog chose him to be Alpha, but Moon barks that he didn't, and that if he saw his behavior and how he let down the Pack, Hunter would be lucky to have been made Omega. She exclaims that Alphas don't run away from danger but protect their Pack. Hunter begins to mention the previous Alpha's wishes again, but Moon exclaims that he can't dare, with her self-control broken at Hunter's twisting of her Father-Dog's wishes.
Moon lunges for him, jaws wide, and is satisfied to see him flinch away. Hunter dodges her attack, but Snap and Mulch fly at him from each side, snapping at his flanks and barking fury. Hunter twists and ducks, barking once in fright, before abruptly bunching his muscles and leaping past Snap, fleeing for the trees with his tail between his legs. Moon's teeth close just by his rump, but he still yelps. Omega prances behind them, urging them with barks, and Snap and Mulch chase Hunter all the way into the trees.
Moon halts as they chase the traitor off, and she notes that for a long time, nothing had been as satisfying as seeing Hunter's fleeing hindquarters. Undergrowth crashes and branches snap as the panicked dog dives for cover and vanishes. Snap and Mulch trot back happily, and between Snap's teeth is a ragged clump of gray-brown rump fur.
That night, Moon has troubles sleeping with worries of her Pack, and she notes that although she should regret driving Hunter away, she can't. She reflects that she is glad that he is gone, and that she thinks he might have been the biggest threat of all.
After Moon's Pack joins the Wild Pack and Moon becomes Fiery's mate, she predicts that her parent-dogs would have approved of him, and thinks to her Father-Dog that if he saw her, he wouldn't be sorry that she isn't with Hunter. She knows that he would be glad she made the choice she made.

Quotes

"He's so well-named. He's the strongest dog in the Pack, besides my Father-Dog, and he's the best hunter. I'm glad my parent-dogs chose him for me."
—Moon thinking about Hunter Moon's Choice, page chapter 1


Star: "Look at him. Thinks his tail touches the Sky-Dogs. Do you really want to be mated with him?"
Moon: "It doesn't matter. The Pack needs strong leaders, and that's what Hunter is."
—Star and Moon about Hunter Moon's Choice, page chapter 1


"But they came to challenge us for our territory! Do we really want them living right next to us? Hunting with us?"
—Hunter about the Wild Pack Moon's Choice, page chapter 2


"I need him now. Hunter loves to lead. He can handle the organization of hunting and patrolling while I tend to the sick dogs. Now, at last, we'll learn to be a team!"
—Moon thinking about Hunter after Alpha gives her leadership of the Pack Moon's Choice, page chapter 4


Hunter: "Moon. You should be the first to know. Rush, Meadow, and I are leaving the Pack."
Moon: "What?"
Hunter: "It's the smart choice. Don't you see? It would be stupid to stick around here and get sick ourselves. We're going to make a new Pack, a strong one, with healthy Packmates. We want you with us, Moon. We'll be Alpha and Beta, you and I: just as we were meant to be. We'll lead a strong and vigorous Pack without sickness."
Moon: "You want to abandon the Pack when it needs you most?"
Hunter: "It's not a Pack anymore. It's too weak to survive."
Moon: "You'll even turn your back on my Father-Dog, who promoted you, who was so kind to you? I won't leave with you, Hunter. I'll stay where I belong. I will never, never abandon my Pack!"
Hunter: "Then you're a stupid dog. You'll sicken and die with the others, Moon. Rush, Meadow, and I will live and be strong. Good-bye, Moon, and good luck. Luck's all you've got left to help you now."
—Hunter leaving Moon's Pack Moon's Choice, page chapter 5


Hunter: "Moon. I'm glad to see that a few of my old Pack manage to survive."
Moon: "What brings you back here?"
Hunter: "It's as I said. I'm glad to see the four of you escaped the sickness, but you've taken very bad losses, haven't you? So, I realized where my duty lay."
Snap: "A bit late."
Moon: "And where does your duty lite this time?"
Hunter: "With this Pack, obviously. I've returned to lead you."
Moon: "You're serious?"
Hunter: "Of course I'm serious. I'm stronger than all of you, and a better hunter. You'd be fools not to jump at the chance."
—Hunter wanting to return to Moon's Pack Moon's Choice, page chapter 8


Moon: "What happened to Rush and Meadow?"
Hunter: "Oh, they got sick. I tried to look after them, but they died anyway."
Mulch: "That's funny. Because guess who I ran into while I was on patrol? Rush and Meadow are looking very well, for 'dead' dogs. You must have taken better care of them than you thought, Hunter."
Hunter: "I--"
Mulch: "In fact, they told me they'd decided to leave you. They snuck away in the night because they didn't like being bossed around like pups-- and by a dog who's never led a Pack before. I think the words Rush used were... let me see... control wolf."
—Moon, Hunter, and Mulch about Meadow and Rush. Moon's Choice, page chapter 8


"My parent-dogs always thought Hunter would be a strong leader, because he was a strong fighter. But I don't think they would choose him now, if they'd witnessed his behavior. Any Pack deserves better."
—Moon thinking about her parent-dogs' thoughts on Hunter Moon's Choice, page chapter 8


Moon: "If you three wish to follow Hunter, I won't try to stop you. He's strong; he's right about that. he'll lead you well. I'm not interested in ordering dogs around, and you should all have a say in what happens to this Pack. You must make your own choices. I won't follow Hunter - not if he was the last dog left in the world - but if you want to go with him, I won't try to stop you."
Snap: "I too value loyalty in a leader. And if my Alpha is true to me, I will give that loyalty back till the day I go to the Earth-Dog. I will not follow Hunter, and I won't submit to him. He's proven himself a coward and a betrayer. You are my Alpha, Moon."
Mulch: "I'm with Snap. Everything she says is true. You're my Alpha, Moon. I follow you, and no other dog, not as long as you want me in your Pack. We're better off without this false dog."
Omega: "How could I trust Hunter? I couldn't trust you ever again. You'd abandon me in the flash of a rabbit tail. I'm staying with Moon."
Hunter: "You're pathetic. Choices? Omegas don't make choices! Hunt-dogs and Patrol Dogs don't vote for their leaders! Your Pack's mine for the taking. It's my right! Your Father-Dog gave me that right. He chose me to be Alpha!"
Moon: "He did not. And if he'd seen how you've behaved, how you let down this Pack, you'd be lucky if he made you his Omega! Alphas don't run away from danger. They stay where they are and protect their Pack!"
—Moon, Snap, and Mulch, Omega, and Hunter Moon's Choice, page chapter 8


"I should regret driving Hunter away, but I can't. I'm glad he's gone. I think that he might have been the biggest threat of all..."
—Moon thinking about Hunter Moon's Choice, page chapter 9


"I think if you could see me, Father-Dog, you wouldn't be sorry that I'm not with Hunter. I know you'd be glad I made the choice I did..."
—Moon thinking to her Father-Dog about Hunter Moon's Choice, page chapter 10



References and Citations

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Revealed in Moon's Choice, chapter 8
  2. 2.0 2.1 Revealed in Moon's Choice, chapter 4
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Revealed in Moon's Choice Pack List
  4. Revealed on Gillian's Facebook
  5. Revealed in Moon's Choice, page 49
  6. Revealed on Gillian's Facebook

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