Disclaimer: Hyperactive-disclaimer-of-not-owning-this-because-I-don't,don't,don't.

Author's Note: Before anyone gets any ideas, this is not saying, in any way shape or form that this here pair of ficlets is turning into any sort of story or series of ficlets; this is what happens when Cain pisses me off. Oh yes, the Tin Man had the nerve to block my muse on a story it's been bugging me to write for months, and at four attempts in, that is declaring war. Some lines even the Tin Man shouldn't cross, especially when I have story ammo at hand.


Tin Man Wyatt Cain was not on the verge of a nervous breakdown, he was not one big walking danger zone, and he had not reached a state of twitchiness so acute that paranoia was now paranoid of him. He denied all reports of being so quick on the draw he'd almost shot half the castle staff for smiling at him, sneered at any and all implications that he was rapidly losing it, and had not tossed someone off a balcony just for giggling at the wrong moment. Wyatt Cain was perfectly in control.

He was just having trouble sleeping.

And it had absolutely nothing to do with his dreams. Or the fact that a certain princess was in them. The dreams he'd been having ever since the time he had kissed the youngest princess, which had been a reaction to extreme mental duress and did not mean that he...that he might...that had anything to do any with feelings of, er, tenderness or l-l-l...or any kind of caring beyond caring and absolutely non-fatherly affection. Of the platonic sort, because Cain unequivocally did not believe anyone's theories regarding dreams as wish fulfilment, especially not those of the fellow with the unhealthy, not to mention disturbing, fixation on his own mother. And he most certainly was not avoiding DG because of them.

Even if he had dreamed of kissing her once or twice...a night...every night...for the past month. Or two. Maybe three. He didn't know for sure because he wasn't thinking about it, not about dreams of kissing the youngest princess, or more than kissing the princess, and especially not about last night when-

Raw, taking a corner too fast, bumped right into the Tin Man, who definitely was not in the midst of remembering something that, at the thought of it being transmitted to the Viewer, made him blush a deep and brilliant red. Like a fire truck. On fire. You know; the kind of image that would make ones hairy friend turn an interesting shade of purple in embarrassment.

"Ah," coughed Raw.

"Ungh," Cain managed in a strangled kind of grunt.

"Hey guys," DG chirped cheerily as she rounded the corner after Raw, "what's up?"

Tin Man Wyatt Cain most emphatically did not squeak at the sight of the princess, nor did he flee from her presence, it was just suddenly found that he had extremely urgent business on the far side of the palace that had to be attended to immediately. And he'd had something stuck in his throat.

There was a momentary silence.

"DG cheats," commented Raw as the Tin Man darn near broke the sound barrier taking the far stairs at a sprint.

"DG is always getting told to 'let the light flow through her'," the youngest princess remarked innocently, "it is not her fault that it keeps on flowing with her dreams right down the hall."