Disclaimer: I don't own Wolverine, Sabertooth or Canada. I'm not making a profit, just having some innocent (that is mostly innocent) fun.

AN: I told y'all I'd update quickly! Two chapters in one day, Whoot! :P


Chapter Eight: Sons of the Wilderness

High above the Canadian Rockies the North Star shone in the mist of a stellar bedecked sky. There is nothing quite like starry winter night, in a place untainted by the light, pollution and presence of civilization. The silver light of the Milky Way, reflecting off the snowy mountaintops was serene and surreal. The wind in the pine trees was cold and confident; the darkness solid and sure of itself.

In this place and time, Wilderness was supreme; queen of a land peopled by animals and native tribes who bowed before her, fearful of the harsh weather, catastrophes and sprits she was capable of sending upon them. In a world that was as old and lonely as the mountains, peace was impersonal; silence was cold, and death a matter of course.

Under the dark shadow of the pines forests, Victor and James ran like animals over the snowy forest floor. Immune to the elements and strong as the world they were in, they didn't tire or pause.

Victor was in front and his grey eyes gleamed whenever the starlight touched them. He was home and every bound he made seemed to ring with a freedom newly found. Behind Victor, James' eyes were grimmer, clouding a face dark in frowns and bitterness. Every step was heavy, every leap determined and self-punishing.

The crescent moon rose and fell and the boys crossed peeks and valleys, never faltering in either speed or direction. Finally, after running for more than twelve hours, Victor splashed through a stream and stopped in the middle of its swirl of ice and crystal water.

James stopped on the edge and they looked at each other. A wind blew their tangled hair and tattered clothes, until James looked down and knelt for a drink. For a moment longer Victor stood in the stream then walked over to a boulder and sat down.

The rush of water was loud but didn't lessen the silence between them. Finally Victor spoke up. "You've never been shot before," he commented, "I wasn't… I thought you might have kicked in the bucket back there."

Jim was still glaring down at his dark reflection in the stream. "Pity I didn't," he growled and Victor frowned. "What the hell are you talking 'bout, Jimmy?" he growled back threateningly.

"I killed her!" yelled James, looking up with fierce blue eyes. "What the hell!? How could I do that? I…"

"Listen Jimmy," interrupted Victor sternly, going to kneel beside his brother. "I told you we weren't like them. There's more to us. I'd seen it the night you killed our Pa. I've seen the strength growing in you just like it grew in me." He put a hand on James' shoulder. "It wasn't your fault, Jim." He said firmly. "She got in the way. Got between us. Nothing can come between us Jimmy, nothing. We're brothers and the only ones of our kind."

Jim frowned and knocked Victors hand aside. "You talk like we aren't human," he growled.

"We aren't, James. Haven't you seen the look on their faces when they see our claws, our strength?" spat Victor. "They say we're monsters. So be it! Let them rot! Out here we're free, who needs them!"

Jim looked down, away from Victor's face, at the water. Slowly he extended the claws in his left hand and let the dark stream run over them, feeling the chill creep up through his bones. "I just thought…" he began sadly then sighed, "You're right Victor. I wasn't ever one of them. I was living a lie and now she's dead." A painful expression crossed his face, as he tried to hold back tears. "I don't want to hurt some one again, Victor," he cried then buried his face in his brother's fur coat.

Hesitantly, Victor put an arm around Jim's shoulder. "Look," he said with some confusion and an edge of frustration, "Maybe Rose wasn't…"

"She was dead," sobbed Jim, "I touched her cheek, after I woke up, while you were fighting the others. Her eyes… they were so empty! It was my fault!"

"It wasn't your fault James! It was their fault. It was all their fault. Look, Jimmy, you need to stop this! We need to… I…" Victor looked around in confusion and saw a cave behind a fallen tree. "Come on. We should rest Jim," he added on a gentler tone, "I'll look out for you. You don't need anyone else. We belong out here, free from it all."

Standing up, Victor easily swept Jim up in his arms and carried his brother into the cave.

Exhausted physically and emotionally Jim fell asleep almost immediately.

Meanwhile, Victor sat outside the cave, idly using his claws to sharpen the end of sticks and thinking about everything that had happened. They were monsters, both of them. They had no father, no mother, nothing to do with humans at all. They were sons of this wilderness around them, cruel and untamed.

His claws extended, carving off the end of a pine branch and Victor smiled, his yellow fangs showing the dim light of dawn. He liked it this way.



AN: Another short chapter to finish it off. Hope y'all liked it.

I'm changing the title of the story to "Sons of the Wilderness: 1849" and will turn this into a series. I have vague plans for about ten stories, covering Logan and Victor's life throughout the 19th century. I doubt I'll ever finish them all, but you know, reviews really do have amazing motivating powers. :D

For the next story, I'm trying to decide weather I should do a sequel and pick them up as wildmen living in the wilderness, or a prequel and write them at Howlett Manner and surround the scene in the movie, where James gets his powers. I'd love to hear y'all opinions. Prequel or sequel?

Anyway, thanks so much for reading and for all your reviews and encouragement. I especially want to thank Nagaku Tsuzuku Yami and Lucky's Girl. They've both reviewed almost every chapter and have given gave me lots of encouragement. Both of them are also working on stories about Wolverine and Sabertooth and I recommend that you check them out.

Babysitting Wolverine and Sabretooth, by Nagaku Tsuzuku Yami

Lost Brothers, by Lucky's Girl