Title: Protect

Rating: PG-13

Disclaimer: I don't own Wolf's Rain (sigh) There. I said it. Toboe! Tsume! Hige! Kiba! (huggles them all) I luvv you all soooo much! I own the bad guys and stuff.

Warning: Umm....swearing, violence, adult situations(nothing REALLY bad. Just mentions of stuff), and changing of POV (point of view)'s a lot. Oh, and if you're wondering, this isn't a yaoi ficcie. I don't like ToboexTsume. This is more of a fluff fic. Or, so I try.

Start Story (Toboe POV)

Trudging softly behind the group, my brown eyes glanced up at what was ahead of us all. It was nothing but green grass as far as the eyes could see. I sighed deeply. Was this even worth it? I ask myself that sometimes since we're all basically starving ourselves, and for what, I ask you. What? Tsume says that this place is nowhere on this planet but yet he still comes along with us. I don't think I could go on this trip without him by my side because he's helped me get out of a lot of situations. Like my ice cold older brother. Or something. I stare back at the grass as Tsume looks back at me. They're a considerable amount ahead of me. I feel like I'm going to melt under the hot sun beating down on me like I'm in an oven with the heat at it's highest. How can they not be hot is what I have to ask?

Then again, they aren't complaining, so why should I? So I may be young but they have to go through the same thing I'm going through. I have to prove myself that I can do whatever they can. Just because they are older doesn't mean that they're more smart. Okay, okay, in reality they are but I don't want to be the weak link. Not anymore. Tsume's saved me enough times already. Maybe I'm just a burden for them all to protect? Should I give up right now? Am I just slowing them down from their goal?I shake my head at that thought. No. I deserve to be here just as much at they do. I may be young but I want to find paradise just as much as Kiba or Hige or Tsume do! That's right. I look up once again just to see they had all stopped. Then I look at why they stopped. In my train of thought I stopped dead in my tracks. Just staring down at the grass like an air head. The three raised eyebrows at me.

I blushed really bad. A strong wind blew and a shiver went up my spine. "I-I'm sorry. I didn't realize that I had stopped."

"Uhhh...you okay?" asked Hige, turning all the way around. He put his hands in his pockets, I just paled down a bit. "You don't look to good at all, runt. Want to slow down?"

"I'm not a runt!" I snapped back. They sort of jerked back. Guess they aren't used to me snapping back. Not really in my line of character to reply with an attitude. "I'm just tired. That's all. But I don't want to slow you guys down. So lets get going."

I started walking and passed Hige first who just shrugged, than Kiba of which who's frowned deepened, but I finally stopped by Tsume. He put a hand in front of my chest to prevent me from walking any further. Then he put that hand on my forehead to check a temperature, I think. I looked at him with my eyes showing confusion as to what he was doing.

"Hn. Let's get rest," Tsume suggested to Kiba. "We've gone non-stop for a whole twenty four hours now. We may be used to it but he isn't. His body will give out if we don't stop."

"Tsume..." I whispered. Was he worried about me? My eyes brightened up and I got all excited. Guess he saw that.

"I don't want to be the one to carry him over my shoulder," He added. I sulked a bit. Should have known that it would end up for his reasons.

Kiba put a cool hand on my forehead as Tsume sat in the never ending grass field. "You don't have a temperature. Yet that is. Tsume is right. Your little body can't take as much as us full grown wolf's can."

"I'm not little!" I shouted back. "I'm just tired! Aren't you guys?"

"Calm down there, pup," Hige said, putting a hand on my shoulder. I grunted in response. "Give yourself a break."

"Okay..." I gave up. I didn't want them all down my back about this. I'll admit, I'm tired. But I feel like I'm slowing everyone down from what they want to do. Like it's all my fault. I don't like to feel guilty and that's why I fought back even though I'm really tired and do need to rest. This time I am gracious that we stopped because I fell right to sleep.

IIIII (Tsume POV)

Waking up in the middle of the night, I looked around. Kiba was looking up at the moon while Hige was sleeping. Where the heck was the kid? I found out when I tried to sit up, he was holding onto my arm, and he was still asleep. I turned a bit red but gently pulled myself away from the young boy. Believe me, I don't say this often or even think it often, but the boy really was quite cute while he was sleeping. A little angel. I stood up and it made the boy move around a bit because he had to be cold. It was cold outside.

Deciding that I didn't want him to get sick, I tapped on Kiba's shoulder. I motioned to the cold Toboe who was stirring and he handed me his coat. I went over and placed it on the pup. He tightened his grip around the warm and curled up into it. Maybe we were pushing young Toboe to much? He was still a young pup. And they weren't really used to traveling far distances like us older wolves. Even if he claimed to be doing okay, he couldn't change the fact taht he was still a cub. Plus the fact that he didn't have his mom or dad to teach him the hunting skills (since he is quite poor at that) wasn't to good either. Guess, since he follows me around all of the time, that I should take the roll. Not a dad. Just...an older brother.

Guess that I've already became that. He's really changed my mind about everything. I sit next to him, protectively setting my hand on his back as he began to stir again, kicking his feet and whimpering, has to be having an awful dream. At first I only saved him because he reminded me of the child that I wasn't able to save. Then...he sort of just stuck around. I know that if he had a choice of which three of us he'd want to follow to the ends of the Earth he would choose me. It's just a fact. Not that I'm trying to be cocky or anything. And no matter what I did, yell at him, hit him, slap him away, he'd still follow me. Trying to be my friend. He really does need someone to follow around. He's a cub. And pups need someone to cling to. I'm not sure why he decided to cling to me but he found something in me that no one else saw before. Made me feel good about myself.

Toboe is still at a vulnerable state. I stand up as he stops stirring and start to walk away. All I want to do is go for a walk to think about things. Not sure what things, but it was a clear night with not that much wind (even if it was considerably cold), but I did have stuff on my mind. As I begin to walk away Kiba has to ask.

"Where are you going?" he asks in his deep tone. Like he's the frickin' leader of the group. He is...but it pisses me off to think that he is. I didn't answer him, he didn't have to know where I was going. He asks me again, obviously annoyed that I was ignoring him. "Tsume, where are you going?"

I turn around. My only concern in this group was Toboe so all I said was "Keep an eye on the kid for me cause I'm going for a walk. I think that he's having a bad nightmare." I started on my way for that walk that I much needed.

IIIII (Narrator POV)

Staring at the moon, Kiba sighed. Maybe Paradise was just a couple more miles away. Or it could be far, far away. Who knows? Maybe he was leading these three on a never ending journey? No. Paradise is out there. Somewhere. It's close. Kiba can't smell the Moon Flowers yet but there would be a time when they can. Paradise wasn't far away.

Then, Hige asked to Kiba "Do you think Toboe can handle this?"

"Hm?" Kiba asked, surprised a bit from hearing Hige. He had been sleeping just a moment ago. He turned around to see Hige standing behind him.

"I mean.." Hige added as he sat down next to his fellow wolf "It's obvious that this is taking a toll on his body. A lot from what I can tell too. He hasn't even woken up and we stopped at around three or four at night."

"Your worried?"

"Of course. Aren't you?"

"I think he can make it. As long as he thinks that he can, he will be able too," the wiser wolf replied. He kept that expressionless look on his face the whole time. "He may be younger but he can do this. We may not go at a fast pace because we have to wait for him at times. But I think that there's someone even more worried than us about him."

"Who else would there be?" the other wolf replied, scratching his head in confusion. "You talking about Tsume? The cold loner that doesn't trust anybody?"

"Think about it. I think that he thinks of Toboe as a younger brother. Or even a son," replied Kiba sweetly. "He told me to keep an eye on him. Haven't you ever noticed that he lets him follow him around like a little pup would to his family? Toboe needs someone right now because he still is a cub. And he chose Tsume. Once Tsume realized that he couldn't break away from it, and that he could trust him, I think that he more or less embraced Toboe's innocence."

"And God knows that Tsume needs innocence," joked Hige. His stomach growled loudly. "And that I need food."

"You're always hungry."

"Be quiet. Anyway, I think it's cute," Hige added. He smiled and looked up at the sky. "Yep. It's cute alright. Toboe finally made Tsume warm up to someone. It took hell for Toboe to get to this point and I think that he is only going to get more attached."

"Tsume's attached too," Kiba said. "And don't say cute. It doesn't seem to suit you."

"Shutup," he hissed back.

IIIII (Toboe POV)

Waking up in a cold sweat from my awful dream, I looked around. I had screamed out 'NO!' when I sat up so Hige and Kiba looked back at me. I panted heavily as I looked around me. No wonder I was so hot now, I had been freezing before, but Kiba had put his coat on me. I guess. Then I noticed that Tsume wasn't around. Just....like in my dream. Tsume hadn't been there and I was being poached. No one wanted to help me. I kept running and running and running in my wolf form, yelling for Tsume or someone to help me, until one caught up to me. They were about to shoot me between the eyes but than I woke up.

"Bad dream?" asked Hige to me. I nodded slowly. "It's a full moon out tonight. And you can see it. Come watch it with us."

I asked, quickly, "Where's Tsume?"

"He went on a walk about...forty minutes ago?" Kiba replied, looking at Hige for the time length.

A walk?! At this late at night? Only bad people were out this late at night, prowling around. He could get himself hurt. I suddenly got worried about him.

"Which way did he go?" I continued on with the questions.

"That way," Kiba replied, pointing from the back of me.

"Okay!" Jumping up I squeaked that out. Kiba stopped me with some more of his words.

Kiba said "I think he wants to be alone. Besides, you shouldn't be out there by yourself."

"I can take care of myself perfectly fine!" I huffed out. Okay, it was a small lie. But it's not like I'm completely helpless. I sighed once again. Maybe Tsume did want to be alone? "Well....I want to just go see if he's okay. I don't think he would venture very far. Would he?"

"Who knows. He's one strange dude," Hige replied, laying back down. He looked at my mad expression. "Awww...did I make the chibi mad at me?"

"He's not strange! He's cool!" I snapped back and ran off in the direction that Kiba pointed too. I wanted to be by Tsume's side. He's like an older brother to me. I don't want to loose that because he's threatened to leave before so I wouldn't doubt him leaving now. But why would he? Because of me slowing things down? Was it my fault? I hoped not as I kept on running to find my friend.

IIIII (Tsume POV)

Stopping just a small mile away from everyone, I didn't think anything of it. I loved to take walks at night. Especially if the moon was out bright like this. It seemed to consume the skies. I sat under a tree and sighed. How long would I last on this trip? If it didn't go anywhere soon I would leave. That was for sure. And those three knew it too. But...I am reluctant to leave. Really, I am. It's not Hige hogging the food and not letting the other two eat. I'm not worried about Kiba filling their minds with crap because he already has fulfilled that mission. All I care about is Toboe and how he's going to take me leaving. Or what he'll do. If he'll follow me wherever I happen to go. That would be so annoying. But I've sort of gotten used to him following me. Toboe can be so clueless at times. I'm worried that if we let him out in the real world that he would get himself skinned. He can be so careless with trusting people. Not all people can be trusted. That's another thing that bugs me about him. If he thinks that their okay he just does anything for them.

Humans weren't to be trusted. You could trust your own kind. Us wolves are not like them, they don't understand our struggle to survive in this strange world, and Toboe can't go out there with no clue on how everything works. He could get hurt. And he's been hurt since a young age. I don't want him to grow up like me. I mean, look at me. Scarred. Cold. Bitter. Loner. Aloof. I don't trust people. And he still looks up to me. So what kind of example am I setting for him? To be cold? Not to trust anybody? That's what I've done all of my life. I never knew another way to live other than of what I've been taught to do. He's been raised to love. Been loved. Not like me. Toboe is the exact opposite from me so I think that makes us attracted to eachother as brothers. We're teaching eachother bit by bit. The good...and some bad. I've never even dared to think of myself as a good person. Much less a role model to kids or younger wolves. I want to know what he sees in me. I don't see it. No matter what I try to find I always go to when I'm mean. Cold. Yelling at someone or smarting off. Some people are born not to get along with other people. Maybe of one of them?

I thought that for a while until Toboe liked me. You know, once someone accepts you, the good and the bad, no matter how bad you think you are, someone out there will like you. And someday you'll meet them. I don't think I was prepared for Toboe. When you meet someone that accepts you, you see them through their eyes. I think that I'm liking myself a bit more. But I want to know what he sees. One of these days I'll have to ask him why he ever even wanted to be my friend.

"Tsume!" I hear from a distance. That voice! I look over and there's Toboe, running towards me. What the hell is he doing up this late at night? He reached me and was huffing from running so far. "I....I was looking for you."

"What are you doing up?" I asked as he sat next to me. He set his head on my shoulder. "And what do you think your doing now?"

"I was scared..." he muttered out.

"Of what? Kiba and Hige were there. You don't need me around all of the time, do you?" I snapped as he looked ashamed for saying it. He just held onto my arm and snuggled up against me. "Your cold? Aren't you?"

"Yeah."

"I'll ask again, what you scared of?"

"Umm...well....I had a nightmare," he said. He started shaking from fright I guessed. "I couldn't get away and they kept chasing me."

"Who?"

"Poachers after wolves. I had changed in wolf form to catch something and they saw me. They started chasing me and they were going to shoot me. One was about to kill me but I woke up."

"Don't worry about it kid," I replied with a sigh. Guess I'm starting to play the big brother or something. I wrapped my arm around him because he started to hyperventilate and he started to cry in my chest. I guess that I could try to be nice for once. Once. "You don't have to worry about it. I'm right here. If I'm by you I won't let anyone hurt you. Okay? Calm down."

IIIII (Toboe POV)

Everything kept running through my mind. What happened in the dream. It scared me so much because I knew that it could happen in the real world so I started crying so bad. I was glad that Tsume held me, letting me cry into him, while telling me that he would be by my side. It helped me. I have to admit that it was a bit embarrassing to cry in front of the person that you look up to most but I couldn't help but do it. Soon enough, I was a wolf and howling out of sadness.

"Stupid! No! What if there are poachers out here!?" shouted Tsume angrily at me. "Calm down, dammit, calm down!"

I calmed down and snuggled against him in my human form once again. He was right. I had to calm down. Or I would get him in trouble too.

"I'm sorry," I apologized.

"Just don't do that again."

"Tsume..." I said softly. I hugged him and he yelled 'What do you think your doing!?' really loudly. I was hugging him. He should get used to it because I'm going to do it more often because he's my older brother. I decided that in my head. He's my older brother. He looked down at me with a confused look on his face. "Thank you so much. I don't know what I'd ever do without you!"

"Ummm..." he started blushing. I looked up at him, a big smile on my face. "Yeah. Okay. You can let go now."

I let go and sighed. "You want to go back now?"

"Go do whatever the hell you want," Tsume replied as he got up. My brown eyes followed him as he started walking away.

"Tsume! What are you doing?" I asked, chasing after him.

"I'm hungry. I'm going to look for something to kill," Tsume said. "Do you want to come along? I think that you need training to catch something because you aren't very good at it."

"Okay!" I nodded. Wait. He just insulted me. As we walked out towards of what seemed nowhere I said "Hey! You insulted me! Didn't you!?"

"And...?"

I just crossed my arms and pouted a bit.

IIIII (Narrator POV)

Kiba and Hige heard Toboe's howling. They looked at eachother then over at where Toboe had been heading.

"Do you think something happened?" Hige asked, putting a hand on his hip. "Maybe Tsume was just picking on him. Or something. And then Toboe got sad. It could happen since Tsume can be a really ass sometimes to the kid."

"Mmmm..." Kiba was trying to decide. What Hige said could be true. Tsume could have said something really hurtful and then made Toboe cry, or it couldn't have happened. With those two you never know. But than something really could have happened. And as far away as they were anyone could have heard him howling and gone over there. They were in danger no matter what. "I think we should go see. Just to check."

"Aw man. I'm still tired," groaned Hige in anger as he had to get up and run with Kiba towards where their friends were heard. "And do we have to run?"

"If they're in trouble we have to hurry," Kiba replied.

The two automatically thought the same thing, of which was to go faster was turning into wolves, so they went to their natural state of body. The white and the brown wolf raced off to find their friends.

IIIII (Tsume POV)

He really has never gone hunting. We're in our wolf forms and we found a huge area where birds are on the trees. He's trying to climb up there, trying to surprise them, but all he is succeeding in doing is scaring them all away. I walk up to him with my stomach growling. I look up and there's a branch not to far up from us, five feet maybe, that he should be able to get the tiny birds in the nest fine. The mother bird was nowhere around so we couldn't get pecked. I motioned with my head up to the branch. He got the gist of it and hunched down, glaring at the nest. It was quite amusing because he would shake his butt and then growl. He jumped up and got on the branch.

I watched as he knocked down the nest with his wet nose and it landed in front of me. He jumps down and triumphantly looks at me. I ignore that and remove the nest that toppled on the birds with my paw. None of the birds had survived the fall. Good. I don't like a meal that squirms.

From there...I won't tell details. It was a nice feast and I got two and he got two. My stomach was satisfied with it. Toboe sat down and whined. Could he still be hungry?! His face said that he was. I looked up at the tree to signal that the smart birds were flying away, since they saw what just happened, and that he really should hurry it up if he's going to do anything. Toboe jumped from branch to branch and caught another bird. A big one this time. He jumped back down and sat it in front of me. I stared at him and his ears went back and he laid down. Making that whining noise once again. Then I realized what he was doing. He was trying to make me proud of him since I hadn't shown any sign of being proud of his catch the last time. To show that he could catch a big one too.

"Okay, okay, you did a good job," I told him unenthusiastically.

He perked up for a moment but than his ears went back down. "You soooo did not say that like you meant it at all, Tsume."

"You did a good job. Deal with it," snapping at him I suddenly heard footsteps. How couldn't I heard it before? A human was right behind us and the flashlights went on us. I turned around to see him. A man wearing a large fur coat, and all black with long brown hair plus squinting green eyes.

"Well, well, well...these aren't dogs. I heard the howling of wolves out here. Someone will pay a good deal to have you two," the man said like we couldn't understand him. He held his hand out to us and said "Come over here, buddies. I won't hurt you."

'Like hell you will' I thought. I said to Toboe "Run."

"Tsume!" I heard him cry, but not as a wolf, but as a human. I turned around and someone was holding Toboe by the neck, a couple inches off of the ground. Damn! "Help me..." he hissed through clenched teeth as the man tightened his grip around his throat.

I snarled at the man. I wasn't able to attack since Toboe could be hurt. That's the last thing that I wanted. But he was already being hurt.

"Turn into your human form. Now," ordered the man behind me. How did they...? "We saw you transform. We've been watching you for the last fifteen minutes. Be a good boy and do it for us. Or I can't be sure your little buddy will get any air."

"Tsuuummeee!" he barely gasped out for my help. That bastard was going to suffocate him if I didn't do this!

I knew there was no other way to help him. Changing back to human form, I sighed. The man behind me tried to hit me in the head with the back of his gun but I swung around and hit him in the stomach. His gun went off and got me in the leg. I cried out in pain as the pain seared through my leg.

"No! Don't hurt Tsume!" said Toboe as he was dropped but the man still held his arm so he couldn't get to me. I dropped to the ground as the man kicked me in the stomach repeatedly. "Stop it! Your hurting him! If you don't stop it I'll turn into a wolf and kill you! I will!"

"Don't you even dare," said the man holding him. He pointed his own gun to the back of his head. "Or I'll shoot."

"Nooo..." said Toboe as the man pushed the cold weapon into the back of his head. "Please! Leave us alone!"

I was forced to look up when the man grabbed my hair and jerked my head up, only to see the man holding that had kicked me in the stomach pointing a gun to my face.

"If you didn't have guns you wouldn't stand a chance," I growled out. "Cowards!"

"Just follow us. And don't try anything funny ei-" the man was cut off by a bite the arm.

My yellow eyes looked over and there was the white wolf, Kiba, biting in the mans arm. He let go and the man dropped the gun. The other one that held Toboe was my target. But he still had a gun pointed to my friends head. Kiba was still wrestling with the other man as I limped up to face the man holding Toboe.

Then I noticed that Hige was crawling up behind the man. He must have saw me looking over his shoulder because he turned behind him and randomly shot. He hit Hige in his front paw and he fell to the ground. I turned into my white wolf form and jumped for the guy but he shot at me. It only grazed my side but it burned. I was set off course and fell to the ground also.

"No!" shouted Toboe, trying to break away from the mans grasp.

Then...I blacked out.

IIIII (Toboe POV)

I have to help Tsume, Kiba, and Hige! That's what ran through my head over and over. But I was useless like this because he kept the gun to my head the whole time. If I changed he would kill me. But...my friends. I want to help them so badly. And I'm so scared for all of our lives.

"Roi! Let's go!" shouted the other man as soon as he had kicked Kiba so much that he was unable to get up. "We'll just take the boy. He'll be worth more because he's just a young cub. The others are hurt anyway."

"Okay, Fujii," Roi replied. He tugged on my arm and said "Come on, kid, we're leaving."

"No! I won't leave with you! Let me go!" I shouted, struggling to get away. I didn't care about myself anymore. My friends were hurt. "I said let me go!"

"Shutup," ordered Roi as he kicked me in the stomach.

I fell to my knees and he just roughly grabbed my arm and pulled me. I was barely able to keep up. All that ran through my mind was that the others would somehow be able to help me. I could hear their whimpering. Their cries. But I wasn't able to help. And now I was going with people that wouldn't have a problem with hurting me. Please...someone help....

IIIII

This is my first Wolf's Rain ficcie so please be nice! Please? Don't forget to review! And don't worry, I won't torture Toboe...to badly. I warn you! Fluff is going to come! Mwahahhahahhahhhahahha-

(gets hit over the head by Kate-Kate)

Kate-Kate: Be quite! How dare you do that to my baby! (huggles Toboe) Toboe! My sweet chibi! I'll never let you go!

Toboe: OO Help....