Andrew J. Talon
DISCLAIMER: Myu, damnit!
She shouldn't be here. She knew this.
The darkness of the night, the pathetic illumination from the crescent moon above, the tingling in the back of her skull-All signs that this was not a good place to be.
But she needed this walk. She'd always needed this walk. And so she went.
The trees towered above her, silent, solid shadows. An owl hooted somewhere in the depths of the forest, a faint echo carrying the sound. She shuddered, looking about herself. She took a deep breath, and pushed forward.
She stumbled over a root, falling face-first into the pine-needle-covered soil. She cursed and coughed at the taste of dirt in her mouth. She spat, vainly wiping her tongue along her teeth, to try and scrape off the unpleasant flavor.
"Late night?" She curses loudly at the voice above her, standing up, brushing off her coat while the speaker grins high above her.
"Let's see... As I recall, the entire male population of Hinata Springs fears you. Aside from Keitaro, but he's stupid. He's also not here. Ergo, you're not here on some romantic rendezvous."
"Brilliant deduction, Tiger-Boy," spits the young woman, still trying to force some mud out of her teeth. "You're on a roll."
"Thank you," replied the half-demon, climbing down the trunk of the massive tree he'd been perched in. He stares down at the young woman in bemusement, while she looks back up at him in malice.
"So, what brings you here? To my neck of the-"
"Say it, and I'll have a tiger fur blanket for my futon," snarls the young woman. The weretiger snickers.
"Touchy. More so than usual."
"Always when around you!" The woman replied icily. The half-demon tilts his head in a very bird-like fashion. Or cat-like, she couldn't decide...
"Really? What could I, humble little me, have done to irritate you?" The weretiger asked, seemingly with an air of concern. The young woman gritted her teeth.
"I could go on about it all night!" She raged, turning and stomping away. The weretiger simply hung from the tree, watching her continue.
"Shut it! I'm not speaking to you!"
"Technically, you are-"
"Shut up you son of a bitch!" The weretiger doesn't bat an eye at that proclamation, as he's heard far worse from her and a few of her dorm mates.
Pervert! Freak! Monster! Demon!
"... Hmph," he grunts, before leaping off the tree and to another, and another, continuing his nightly "patrol".
"Fine... Don't come crying to me..."
The nerve. The nerve! Just because she wanted to take a walk, he has to butt in! He's always butting in!
"That bastard... That son of a bitch, that pervert..." She mutters angrily to herself, stomping through the woods. She runs into a few trees, a stumbles a bit more, but the damage is done only to her pride.
"I can't believe him..." She continues ranting, walking on, her anger fueling her hike. She's had to deal with this... This demon, ever since she punched him into a shrine. A shrine that bestowed the right person who entered it with both a gift... And a curse. Not to mention a curse on the whole of the Hinata Sou's residents.
Well... Aside from Keitaro. That demon and the pervert manager had been inseparable since the day he'd become the "protector" of the Hinata Sou and it's residents. Playing video games, doing chores-They were like brothers.
Brothers with less time for studying. Less time for bickering.
Less time for me...
"No! I don't feel that! I don't believe it!" Naru snarled, kicking a pinecone away.
Admit it... You're jealous of Talon. You're jealous of all the girls, around Keitaro.
"I... AM... NOT!" She bellowed, punching through an unfortunate tree's trunk. She doesn't notice it collapse to the ground, nor the sound it makes.
But she does notice the growl following her out of the darkness. She pauses, and turns around. In the dim light cast by the city through the woods, she can barely make out a shape moving along the ground. A growling shape.
"Um... Talon! You bastard! If you're trying to scare me-"
The shape becomes more distinct, in the pale moonlight. Naru gazes in a kind of fascinated horror at this apparition. A creature she'd seen at the zoo, and in books and on TV-but not in person. Not without a fence or a screen between herself and it.
Long, strong, tireless legs. A lean, shaggy, powerful body. A long snout, above which were glowing yellow eyes. Long, sharp teeth.
"Um... Grandma..." Naru mutters in fear, backing away. She couldn't help but recall a western fairy tale her mother had told her. Little Red Riding Hood...
The wolf snarled at her, a snarl that was mirrored to her side. Her eyes darted over towards the second wolf, eyeing her the same way as the first. And then another... And another...
A pack of about ten surrounded her, all growling at the intruder. Naru tried remaining calm, taking deep breaths. She slowly began to edge away from the pack, not looking in their eyes. She remembered her forestry class instructor's words from high school: "You look down, submissive. You are saying,' This is your territory, not mine. I'm now leaving. I'm not a threat.' Do this, and the wolves will not attack. Stay calm and focused and no harm will come to you."
And it was working. The wolves were still growling at her, but no longer advancing. They watched her leave, apprehensive, but not on the attack. Naru breathed a sigh of relief, as she kept slowly and easily moving away.
"HHHHHUUUOOOOAAAAAAARRRRRR!!!" Came a bone-chilling roar through the trees, causing Naru to fall flat on her ass and the wolves to howl in surprise. She looked up into the trees, seeing a familiar shape running through the foliage effortlessly.
"This is my territory, bitches! Beat it!" Roared Talon, his eyes glowing bright green in the moonlight, his teeth bared in a maniacal grin. The lead wolf, the alpha, howled at him, as the other members of the pack joined in. They didn't move.
"Talon you idiot! Leave them-"
"Stuff it, bitch! This territory's mine, YOU HEAR ME?!" Talon bellowed, an almost-insane grin plastered to his face as he leapt. The wolves scattered, before launching themselves at the weretiger, jaws snapping, teeth flashing. The weretiger, still grinning, simply struck out with his powerful paws, teeth, and claws.
And they fell. One after the other. Naru watched, as one watches a car wreck, as the weretiger protector of the Hinata Sou, massacred the pack. There was no other word for it.
The alpha male, he ripped in half, letting the innards cover him as though he were standing in a shower. He snapped the necks of other wolves, ripped the heads off others, still others he crushed their spines with a single blow, shattering their bones and leaving them as broken bags of fur and muscle.
In a few minutes, it was over. The bodies of the slain pack surrounding him, his body covered in blood and entrails and unspeakable things, standing in the middle. He had been grinning during the battle-If you could call it that. And Naru, trying desperately not to throw up, staggered up to him, to see another expression on his face.
"..." He looked up at her, and she at him. His eyes held such torment, such rage and self-loathing and fear and grief and...
"Ugh!" She couldn't take it. Naru retched on the forest floor, coughing and spitting out the contents of her stomach. She collapsed, panting pathetically, shaking. She turned to look over her shoulder, and wrinkled her nose. The weretiger had copied her, barking on the ground and was now gasping for breath.
"... You... Why did...?" Naru panted out, shivering. This was... It was just so sick and horrifying... She lost control. Talon turned, coughing, looking pale underneath her orange and black fur. He shook his head, tears threatening.
"I... I don't know... I... It's always been this way..." Talon sighed, looking down at the blood-stained ground, looking suddenly lost. Naru tried to piece the images together, trying to give some meaning to this bizarre, horrifying, sight.
"You... You've done this before?"
"... I'm the protector of the Hinata Sou, and it's residents," the weretiger quietly responded, not looking at her. "All threats. Any threats. Must be destroyed... And I..."
"You lose control?" Naru murmured, still feeling queasy. The blood-covered half-demon nods, still staring at the ground. The Toudai hopeful scoots herself closer to him, trying desperately to ignore the stench of death and blood. She fails, throwing up at the side of the weretiger again, the half-demon holding up her hair. It doesn't really help, given that he's himself covered in blood, but Naru can't help but silently appreciate the attempt. She sighs, resting a tentative hand on his shoulder.
"... I didn't ask for this, Naru."
"I know... Keitaro didn't, either," Naru murmured back, exhausted from the heaving she's been doing. The weretiger places his hand over hers, too exhausted to do anything else. She leans against him, resting her head against his shoulder.
"Not what you expected?" Talon murmurs, blinking. Naru shrugged.
"What do you mean?"
"Seeing me like... Like this."
"You saw me too..."
"I don't want to sleep out here," Naru said practically. Talon nodded, and slowly, got up to his feet, holding Naru up as best he can. The weretiger slowly starts walking towards the Hinata Sou, somewhere outside the woods but definitely in the direction he's headed. Even all this gore cannot dull his most basic instincts.
How far could you take either? He didn't know. Maybe Naru... Could help him now. Somehow. He didn't know.
He could only hope, he supposed, as the two lumbered their way back home.
sorry about the SI thing. Still, I think this is a pretty good view of
how things would REALLY be like in the Hinata, blessed and cursed with
Well, allright, fine, I was just trying to prove that my OC is NOT a Mary Sue... Did I succeed? I hope so...