Disclaimer: I don't own Inuyasha. *Sniffs* Don't rub it in!


Author's note: I got the idea for this fic one night while thinking of everyone's status in the pack. I decided to write this down, and, well, here you are. And, yes, I do consider Hatchi (the raccoon demon that's Miroku's friend) to be a pack member, since he helps out nearly as much as Myouga.



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Inuyasha gave a deep sigh as he leaned back against the trunk of the God Tree. Two more days until he went to bring Kagome back, and he was BORED. He closed his eyes and the edges of his mouth twitched in a slight smile as the sounds of another fight between Sango and Miroku were brought to him on a stray breeze. The monk never learned, did he?


Inuyasha yawned as he settled in for a nice doze. The hanyou rarely slept, since he didn't need as much sleep as a human did, and now that he had a pack to look after, he had to be on guard at all times, to keep them safe.


His expression softened at the thought of those that had come into his care. Much as he denied it, he truly cared about each of them, and knew a lot of each member's quirks and habits.


Take Kagome for instance. Inuyasha felt himself mellow out a bit more at the thought of his Alpha female. And she performed the role magnificently, even if she didn't know that he had given her that status mentally.


Kagome was usually the one in charge when he wasn't around. She took it upon herself to keep the pack members safe and happy. She was always there with a ready ear to listen, and a shoulder to cry on. She gave the best moral support our of anyone in the pack. Her leadership qualities matched his own, and the pack looked to her as easily as they looked to him for guidance.


The sound of a harsh slap, brought to him by the teasing breeze, brought his thoughts to his Beta. Miroku. The guy had his faults, sure, but he was always there when Inuyasha needed him. He was wise beyond his years, and always willing to provide advice to his leader. He was a strong, steady person, one that could be relied on. He was the one entrusted with the financial aspects of running the pack, and he performed well, even if his methods were a bit unorthodox. Still, it kept the pack fed and sheltered, so who was he to complain? Besides, if he and Kagome were both out of commission for some reason, Miroku could easily be trusted to lead the pack safely. Inuyasha hated to admit it, but Miroku was invaluable as his second-in-command.


Thoughts of Miroku led to thoughts of Sango, Kagome's Beta. It would be hard to find a female as strong and reliable as Sango. Her knowledge of youkai surpassed anybody else's in the pack, her fighting skills were nearly on a level with his own, and she kept the interests of the pack in mind. Even her need for revenge would benefit the pack. Not to say that she was ruled by it. Far from it. Sango was one of the kindest, gentlest members of the pack. Very intelligent and down to earth. She and Miroku worked well together, for all the monk's lecherous ways. He would be hard pressed to find anyone able enough to fill her position, and he would never want to try. Sango was an invaluable member of the pack, as a warrior, advisor, and friend.


Thoughts of Sango and Miroku naturally led to thoughts of two of the four regular members of the pack, Kirara and Hatchi.


Both were invaluable as transportation. Hatchi was great to go to for illusions and transformations. He was starting to educate Shippou on how to improve his, not that the pup needed much. And you couldn't fault Hatchi's loyalty. Sure, he was a coward at times, but deep down, he had a will of iron. Miroku had done good to find a friend like that. They were rare in this world.


Kirara, one of the best fighters in the group. Only the strongest youkai went up against her and lived to tell the tale. She could be a great comfort in either form, and was good to go to for a listening ear, if you were afraid of being rejected. Inuyasha couldn't count the times that Kirara had patiently listened to him as he complained about things.


Inuyasha's thoughts wandered a bit, until they came to rest on Kaede. The old woman couldn't be faulted for her healing abilities, and her knowledge of many things spiritual and practical. She was often the voice of reason among chaos. Inuyasha regretted not being able to know her in her prime. She must have been such a spitfire then!


His mind then settled on the other old member of the group. Myouga, his so-called retainer. Inuyasha didn't need a retainer, but he allowed the old flea to keep the title, to keep him happy. Inuyasha sighed as he thought about how many times Myouga had saved the life of a pack member when they were poisoned. His ability to suck out poison was a great asset, especially since Naraku seemed very fond of using poisonous creatures against them.


Finally, he came to the final member of the pack, and the lowest ranked one. Shippou, the little fox kit, who was the pup in the pack. Every single pack member, himself included, adored the little guy. Of course, Inuyasha didn't show it as much, or in the same way as the other members.


Shippou, despite, or maybe because of, his tragic loss of his parents was becoming stronger every day. His illusions were starting to gain substance to them, and that was something that most illusionary youkai weren't able to accomplish until adulthood, if even then. He was very smart for his age, even by youkai standards, and showed signs of becoming one of the most powerful warriors to ever exist, if given the chance. And Inuyasha would try his hardest to make sure he got it. The inu hanyou was sure that wherever they were, Shippou's parents were proud of their son right now.


Sure, each member had their faults, and sometimes they drove him crazy, but he had to admit something, if only to himself. He loved them all, albeit in a friendly way most of them, and there would be hell to pay if something happened to any of them. He was Inuyasha, Alpha Male, leader, guardian, friend. And he would do everything in his power to remain that way.


The clouds passed high above the earth, silent witnesses to the sleeping hanyou below.



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Author's note: Yeah, I know, it's not very good, but my mind wouldn't let me sleep until I wrote and posted this. Please review, and be kind. It's 1 am, and I've been up since 6 am this morning.