BSA: At last it has arrived, the long awaited Chapter Nine. You have no idea how hard this was to work out, I almost gave up on this story entirely. But fueled by the dozens of reviews and comments, I forced myself to continue. This will lead up to the finale and one last chapter to end it all. I hope you will consider this worth the wait, and I will try to get the last chapter done soon.
Disclaimer: I do not own Wolf's Rain, or any of its characters. (Unfortunately)
~~ Previously ~~
The red head wolf, fought the urge to weep, though it was strong, and managed to pull himself into a sitting position. With all the energy he could muster, he sent an almost convincing glare at him before being overcome once again by white hot pain. He heard the man, he now knew as Malikai, chuckle in delight.
"Oh how nice." He suddenly exclaimed, looking towards the caves entrance. "We have company."
The low sound of growls drew Toboe's eyes to the outside, and he was met with two pairs of vicious but concerned eyes. He could have jumped up and down with glee, but another wave of fire had him gasping for air again.
"Well now, you seem to have come at an inconvenient time. Me and my pet were just about to leave."
And as quickly as the sentence was out of him mouth, a loud howl echoed off the walls.
A piercing cry echoed through to surrounding forest, ringing in his ears as green eyes grew wide; stumbling under the weight of a great gray wolf whose teeth moved dangerously close to his throat. He recovered quickly from his shock and with grace he side stepped to avoid what could have been a deadly blow. A smirk formed on his thin lips as he was approached again, this time by the fierce gold eyes of the pack leader; Kiba circled with teeth bared, as the man pulled a sleek shimmering blade from his jacket.
"You know, if I didn't know better, I'd think you were against me being here." He hissed, voice dripping with sarcasm, "I mean really, can't you see we were in the middle of something?"
Toboe watched the display, his eyes blurred with tears; the pain, now leaving a tingling trail of numbness across his limbs, was lessening into a dull throbbing. As his vision grew darker, a pair of gold eyes found his and he felt himself pulled into a warm embrace.
"C'mon kid, time to go," Tsume said as he pulled the teen to his feet and lifted him into his arms. "HIGE! Wake Up!" he added, kicking a fairly decent sized rock in his direction, almost releasing a sigh of relief when the boy stirred.
As soon as Tsume began to walk, the red head in his arms was caught in a wave of dizziness and he clutched the elder's shirt; trying to find some form of stability in the spinning world. Finally on his feet, Hige shakily joined his leader at the mouth of the cave. Facing down the mysterious man with fierce eyes, the two pack-mates began forward; slowly leading their target into a corner, and giving Tsume the space he needed to carry Toboe from the cave.
Seeing his prize being quickly walked away, the defensive man glared; his voice dripping with malice, "And exactly where do you think your taking my pet?" he questioned. Daring to take a step forward he was met with a pair of jaws, snapping barely a foot from his face; causing him to retreat to the wall once more.
Hearing the question cause the eldest of the pack to stop dead in his tracks, shoulders shaking with the force of his possessive growl. With practiced ease, he knelt at the mouth of the cave, leaning his companion against the wall. He stood slowly and soon joined the remainder of his pack, hackles rising as a turbulent rage settled into his heart.
Malikai blinked, seeming to finally see what was before him; and what a sight it was, as the faces of three monstrous wolves grew steadily closer in the narrowing cave. His eyes widened and a sharp breath escaped his chest as his back met with cold stone, and though he trembled with new found fear, his words were full of cocky defiance.
"You really think this intimidates me?" he speaks in a smooth, calm voice. "That you…any of you, are going to keep me from what's mine? Do you honestly think I didn't plan for a moment just like this one?" he wracked his brain, going carefully through everything he could remember on his person, anything that could back up his bold words; and with a slow reach into his pocket, he smiled.
"As if I would be outsmarted by a pack of dogs..." he said with a laugh, tossing the contents of his hand to the floor and watching as a thick cloud of smoke began to fill the cave.
Moving with stealth and speed around the wolves; now coughing and attempting to regain their bearing, he rushed towards the light and his freedom. He darted quickly into the sun and made to run for the trees, throwing a calculated stare over his shoulder; suddenly he froze, lips turning up as a hiss passed his lips.
"You…" he whispered, taking three quick strides and kneeling in front of the youngest of this pack. "I have never been cornered before, by anyone. You have proven to be quite the headache."
Through unfocused eyes, Toboe stared at the man before him; a bad feeling stirring in his gut. He struggled with his numb limbs, willing them to work if only for a short time; groping around behind him as he searched for anything he could use as a defense.
As the smoke began to clear, the stumbling wolves turned towards the light; upon seeing their friend's desperate searching they moved to run to his aid. Seeing the movement, the pale man sent out a quick grab, latching onto the young wolf's shirt collar and lifting his forgotten blade to his throat.
"Not another step boys." He said with a smile, watching the three skid to a stop several feet away. "I tried to make this easy you know. I'm not that complicated; just don't take my stuff and the world keeps on spinning." He rambled, beginning a slow trek backwards, dragging the struggling Toboe with him. "But you lot have turned this day into a ridiculous headache."
He moved with jerky, unsure steps toward the edge of the trees, "Now after all this…I don't even…" he paused for a moment, and after a quick look behind him he released a breathy laugh. "Well I have a way to fix this…for me at least; I believe there's an old term for it. Ahhh, what was it?...Oh right, that's it. If I can't have him…no one can."
Three sets of eyes went wide and he came to stand at the edge of a massive cliff; the wind whipping through red hair, Toboe looked between his friends, and the long and surely deadly drop behind him.
As time seemed to slow, a thought formed in his head; dozens of adventures and fights, how many times they have all protected him. Willing to give up everything if it meant they could all live to fight another day; a feeling began to spread through him, warm and tingling and reaching into the very ends of him. He felt it throughout his being, a feeling he hadn't known in years of existence…Anger.
With a last look at his friends, he called on all the reserves he had; forcing his heavy limbs to move, as he gripped the blade at his throat. With all his might he pushed and fought, causing the man behind him to stumble as they grappled for control.
As his tired limbs began to burn with strain, Toboe gave a vicious shove and as he glared, he saw green eyes go wide in panic. A feeling of weightlessness surrounded him, the wind whipping his hair, he stared unblinking, as the forest floor beneath them, disappeared. And then they were falling…
BSA: Again, I hope it was worth the wait and I will be working on the rest as fast as my brain will allow.