Family is what you make of it and Felix has never had much family in the sense of blood. A mother with a dark past, a father in prison and an Uncle who did the best that he could while being the man he had always been. Other than that all Felix ever had was the whole of the Wood Cats gang.
However let's go back to the beginning which always seems to start before a person is even a sparkle in their parents eyes.
Gracie Martin was a well liked girl in high school, loved by all at her somewhat rundown school at the edge of Evermore city back in the woods. It was a school created by Therians and mainly educated Therians but they couldn’t turn down others who registered either. Despite her bubbly personality she had a dark side her brother being a member of a local gang of Ailuranthrope. It was just part of their family since their father had been a member as well.
In her Junior year of high school at a football game with the in city school Gracie meet a boy her age named Liam Taylor who was the son of a politician. The young woman truly believed she was in love and shunned her family and the gang, that was an extension of it, to be with Liam. He told her that he loved her but if she had realized at the time she would have known that wasn’t true since he would never be seen with her in public. Gracie gave Liam everything despite the pain it caused to her family and in the long run her as well.
Exams were stressful and she believed that’s why she was over a week late, but something seemed wrong when she finally did start and she went to the doctor only to receive heartbreaking news. Calling Liam, she was in tears as she explained to him her miscarriage and the understanding she expected never came as he sneered at her and called her a whore and a slut saying that the child couldn’t have been his. Blood of men like him would never mingle with low life trash. His words making her feel like nothing, less than dirt beneath his feet and she realized he was far from the guy she believed him to be.
The bit of her heart that Gracie was holding together with nothing but sheer will power was throw to the ground and stomped on leaving nothing but dust where a loving and trusting heart had once been. Gracie spent that whole first day crying her father and brother clueless as to what was going on. The teenager had to talk to someone though so she called Braden Morris, her childhood sweetheart and her brother’s best friend. The two sat on the roof outside of her bedroom window and talked softly as she explained to Braden her troubles and he wiped away her tears slowly beginning to put her self worth back together. The other Ailuranthrope had always seen her as something precious and she had pushed him away as if he were below her and yet he never gave up on her and never let her go.
A few months later Gracie was pregnant again and this time her partner was equally excited even though both were still in high school. The gang was incredibly supportive and it was oddest baby shower in history as men in leather jackets brought pastel bags and wrapped presents. Everything was finally lining up in life for Gracie, until she and Braden were at dinner one night and who should be there but Liam. Harsh words were said and Gracie began to cry but Braden wasn’t a young girl that used to love the guy and he drug the man outside slamming him against multiple tables on the way until Liam lay on the pavement of the parking lot bleeding and Braden was hauled to juvenile hall.
Even with Braden behind bars Gracie was surrounded with love the day their son was born, Felix Morris, Gracie giving him the name of her favorite cartoon cat and the last name of her love. When Braden was released he and Gracie got married and became an actual family Felix quickly taking to his father as soon as the Ailuranthrope held him. As Felix grew he had a lot of strong males and females to look up Braden trying to protect him from what the family was involved in.
Felix always knew he was from the wrong side of the tracks and that his family was different but he loved those differences. His life was never boring and his parents would let him pet them in their animal form on full moons so he got used to what they were. In his mind it was the coolest thing in the world and his family was beyond awesome. In school everything was so easy for him, everyone knew his family and so they treated him with respected and it became easy to walk all over people and become a troublemaker since no one on campus would put him in his place. Everyone wanted to be around him and no one wanted to upset him.
In middle school everything changed since he was forced to go to a school in the city instead of in the Therian territory. His first day a stuck up jock type thought he could push Felix around and make fun of his name and Felix punched him right in the nose earning his first suspension. His Dad was proud and his Mom told him he couldn’t act like that. It was what Felix had always done so he didn’t understand why it was different now which was why his parents sat him down and explained that not everyone knew about Therians or their family’s links to crime. It was best to try and keep off the radar at school since that could cause a bunch of unwanted and unneeded attention for their family. This was a hard thing to changed about himself since his temper was often sparked since those as school didn’t respect him and hated the fact that he came from the “trashy” section of town his father often picking him up on his motorcycle after school wearing his personalized leather jacket but pre-teens were too stupid to realize the implication that jacket carried.
Felix changed his way of acting at school and he hated it because he couldn’t be himself or do what he wanted or say what he wanted. His Uncle could see his frustration and decided to step in unable to deal with seeing his nephew miserable. Mason explained to his nephew that he had faced the same problem and there was a way to be true to yourself without gaining attention you just had to be sly about it. It was about the impression you gave instead of how you really were. If nothing could be pinned on you than you were always in the clear. With that freshly instilled knowledge Felix was still as snarky as ever but instead of facing his tormentors head on he would pull pranks and the likes which couldn’t be tied back to him. Giving the aura of not caring about school it was easy to make the grades he needed but he would purposely not turn in assignments until after they were due or answer questions wrong in class when called on. It wasn’t that he didn’t know because he did he just didn’t need anyone hassling him about it and he would take the deduction on being late.
When Felix reached high school he made friends with a kid on the football team named Grayson who wasn’t full of himself like the others. He actually cared about others, the grades he got and being true to himself. There were a lot of times Felix lead Grayson astray but that was normal in any friendship, though Grayson did almost lose it the time that Felix put Ex Lax in the cookies for the football bake sale, no one got hurt and it was hilarious to Felix to watch the players rush off the field in the middle of a game. Grayson started to see the humor of it later on but he was raging at the time.
Their Freshman year a girl named Ellie started talking to them and it was easy for Felix to tell that no matter how beautiful she was that she only had eyes for Grayson who seemed oblivious. It was a really sad situation and Felix tried to help Ellie out but the more he tried to help and the closer he got to her he realized he really did like her. It was a dangerous path to walk but he knew that he wasn’t the one she wanted. That same year his father was arrested for drug possession with intent to sell, Felix knew it was all gang related and the police chief came to Felix saying if his father gave up the head of the gang than Braden would be released. If there was one thing the police didn’t understand is was that the Wood Cats were family and they wouldn’t turn on one another, they would protect each other no matter what.
Unable to handle the pressure of the investigation Felix’s mother left town and he fell under his Uncle’s care. Since his Uncle didn’t have any kids of his own he was clueless on the whole raising a kid thing, he had good advice to give in certain situations but he let Felix come and go as he wanted letting him get away with anything short of murder. After six months Felix had finally gotten Grayson and Ellie together and though it hurt it was good to see her smile and be truly happy even if it ripped his heart out in the process. He began to take small jobs for his Uncle, mainly just carrying messages and nothing that would get him into legal trouble. That was something his Uncle had promised his parents, Felix might be family and a technical part of the gang but when it came time it was his choice on what to do.
His grades skyrocketed in high school because he was smart and he didn’t care if anyone knew it because he was smart, cocky and a smartass. It drove the teachers insane during class but they always praised his work when it came to papers and projects, he wasn’t a teacher’s pet but he knew his best chance at a good life was good grades and getting into a good college.
Sophomore year things began to change again which seemed to be the only constant in his life. A new girl in school named Vicki caught Grayson’s attention and the next thing Felix knew Grayson was dumping Ellie and she was destroyed. Never had he been so angry at his best friend as when he saw the tears rolling down Ellie’s checks as she was so easily replaced. Grayson had claimed he had been thinking of breaking up with Ellie for a while but no one saw it coming. The next Friday night at the football game Grayson kissed Vicki on the field and Ellie quickly stood up and ran out of the stadium crying, Felix ran after her but she was already in her car and driving off by the time he reached the parking lot. Worried for her safety he got on his motorcycle and followed after her. Not two miles down the road he found her car crashed into a tree the hood caved in and glass littering the ground. Smoke was coming from the hood and he could smell gas the line having been punctured by a large rock.
Felix yelled for Ellie to wake as she groggily looked at him, he yelled at her to get her seatbelt off as he tried to open the door but the frame had been bent on impact. Using his elbow covered by his motorcycle jacket he slammed his elbow into the glass shattering it as he leaned in trying to unhook her seatbelt but it was stuck. Ellie was panicking which wasn’t helping as he tried to get the belt free, snarling he ripped the seat belt in half and pulled Ellie out of the broken window pulling her to the other side of the road as the car caught fire while they both looked on with fear knowing Ellie could have been trapped in the car. When the ambulance and fire department showed up they both answered the questions the best they could and Ellie refused to let the EMTs take her unless Felix could go with her and he held her hand the whole time.
Near death tended to change the way people saw things and Ellie realized that Felix had been there for her when she needed him the most. He had always been there, always helping her even if it wasn’t to his benefit. Ellie had kissed him but he told her when the adrenaline wore off they could figure things out. He didn’t want her to just want him because he had saved her life, he wanted to make sure she cared about him and wanted this too. When Grayson got to the hospital worried over Ellie, Felix didn’t hesitate to deck him in the face his best friend hitting the ground. He yelled at Grayson that he couldn’t just be there for people when he wanted or when it benefited him, be blamed Grayson for what happened. Grayson yelled back at him that he was nothing but the self-righteous son of a criminal and no one wanted him at school.
Felix didn’t show it but those words hurt and maybe it was time to go back to the high school he was meant to be at, the same one his parents attended and a school he would get real respect. Speaking in anger he told his friend he wouldn’t have to worry about him anymore, he had family for that. The next day he had his Uncle sign the transfer papers and he went to school in the Therian territory. It wasn’t a hard transition since a lot of the kids of people in the gang went to the same school and since his Uncle was in change he was quickly the most popular guy in school. Everyone wanted to have lunch with him and listen to the stories he had to tell, they all had each other’s back and Felix knew this was where he was supposed to be.
He still talked to Ellie but she was upset with him changing schools without talking to her about it. She understood why and she told him Grayson hadn’t meant the things he said that night which just made Felix angry since it wasn’t her job to defend or apologize for Grayson. He told her it reminded him of when the two had been dating but Ellie told him that she wasn’t interested in anyone who was willing to give up what they had so easily, Felix said he never would and she whispered, “I know”, before kissing him. It was the start of something that should have been simple and sweet but life rarely works that way.
A few days later Grayson came and apologized to Felix for what he had said, the Ailuranthrope told him that they could still be friends but he wasn’t going back to that school, he wasn’t meant to be there. Grayson reminded him that he was better than his family and better than any gang, not joining was like going against a family tradition though and Felix wasn’t sure he could refrain. Instead of making a decision he continued living his life the way it was, going to school, getting into fights, knowing the school couldn’t and wouldn’t do anything about it. Ellie hated the change in him but she didn’t understand it was who he had always been, the animal lying under the surface. It caused too much tension and Senior year Ellie had finally had enough and broke it off with Felix right before prom. Felix couldn’t blame her and he couldn’t stop her because he had no intention of changing who he was, not again. It was like a punch in the heart to lose her but they had slowly been growing apart and she was meant for someone so much better than him.
Graduating in the top ten percent of his class the family was celebrating that night and ready to start his initiation into the gang when a new comer made an appearance. The man was Orion Valkyrie and he was the new Ambassador to the Therians, with the numbers in the gang they could have easily taken him but instead his Uncle Mason agreed to talk to the Ambassador, still being young Felix wasn’t sure what it could be about. A few hours later both men left the house and stood around the bonfire everyone was gathered at. Mason introduced the Ambassador to them all and spoke of an agreement which had reached by both. The Ambassador would continue to allow them to do their dealings as long as they no longer used their Therian abilities to threaten people, if anyone should come to any harm due to the actions of the gang Orion would deal swift justice. It was clear not many gathered like the Ambassador but they automatically respected him and his wishes. What he was asking wasn’t out of the realm of possibility or crazy by any means.
Later Orion asked to speak to Felix privately, he knew that the young Ailuranthrope was considering entering the gang and he had another offer to give the teen. He could either continue his path and likely end up like his father or he could come and work for Orion. It was something he had never considered since Orion was in the private security business. That was also part of the deal Orion and Mason made, Orion would give Felix the change at another life. The likelihood of Felix making it through life in the gang without a record was slim to none and it wasn’t often an offer like Orion’s came along. So Felix agreed to come and work for Orion with one stipulation, the Ambassador had to pay for his education when he decided to go college. It was something Felix wanted to do but he had no idea what he wanted to major in just yet.
To show his gratitude for keeping to the agreement, Mason gifted Orion a restored Honda Valkyrie the day Felix started to work for him. The training was hard and Orion was not a pushover but Felix learned a lot especially about holding his own temper since the Ambassador was far calmer than Felix imagined which made it easier for Felix to relax.
A few months after he started working for Orion he was in the office alone when the full moon began to rise and intense pain radiated through his body as he began to go through his first shift. It hurt so much more than he expected and he thought he was going to go through it alone until Orion returned to the office having forgotten a necessarily file. Seeing Felix struggling the Ambassador calmly talked him through it and reminded him to stop fight it since that would just cause more pain. When Felix finally gave in not focusing on the pain it seemed to make the process move faster or maybe it just seemed that way, soon the pain faded and Felix was looking down at his large paws.
Orion lead him towards the window and he caught his reflection for the first time, a lion stared right back at him and he couldn’t help but give a feline smile before releasing a roar. No Ailuranthrope really knew what their feline form would be, they could guess based on their parents but that didn't mean it would be the same. He spent the night playing in the office building leaping from desk to desk and bounding up the stairs before pacing the roof feeling like the king of the world. He and and Orion played and fought the kitsune faster than he would have expected and he was surprised that Orion had stayed to make sure he was alright. After the first transformation it was easier but he always remembered Orion’s words and didn’t fight it.
Within the next year Felix came to a very strange decision on his future and Orion began to pay for his college courses towards his degree in criminal justice. The pieced of a scattered life beginning to fall back together and to his surprise his father and family supported him in his decision despite how they lived their life. With an open road before him his future could lead him anywhere.