House of Dogs

By TwinEnigma

Disclaimer: I do not own the Naruto series or characters. I am doing this purely to amuse myself.

Codes: Character Death (only mostly dead), Crossover, AU

Two swords rested in the small shrine belonging to the Inuzuka clan. One had a carved red coral guard and well-preserved purple braiding was artfully twisted across the ivory grip. The other sword lacked the beautiful braiding, but it was still striking with an ornately carved ivory grip and sheathe. They are both ancient, having rested there since long before Konoha even existed, and are the greatest treasures of the House of Dogs.

Above the swords, an old faded tapestry depicted the guardian kami of the Inuzuka defending the founding ancestors of their clan and their now-seldom used family mon. The massive white dog sailed across the cloth, savage and protective, his claws tearing through roiling clouds. Faded designs ghosted across its forelegs and face.

When Kiba was little, his grandmother would recite the mythology of the two swords in soft, reedy tones. Sacred, magical swords, she called them, with powers that protected the clan. And though she could not recall which was which, she eagerly recounted tales of how one sacred sword restored the lives of the dead and the other destroyed enemies without mercy. He didn't much care for the details, but the tales of battles and youkai and rescuing princesses were plenty exciting and he would sometimes pretend while he was playing that he was a warrior-prince, off to rescue fair maidens from terrible monsters.

For a long time after the old woman passed on, Kiba forgot about the shrine and the swords. He got older, eventually entered the Academy and then the hustle and bustle of ninja life consumed his time. His teammates more often than not occupied the majority of his thoughts and childish things got left further and further behind.

Then, when he was sixteen, the Akatsuki leader, Pain, invaded Konoha.

They evacuated the civilians to the mountains and Team Eight and the rest of their group stayed to defend at the front line. They could not, no - they never would let the mad monster pass by them, no matter how powerful he was. Even outclassed, they would not give up.

And then Hinata was run through by one of the monster's six bodies. Kiba and Shino fought tooth and nail to pull her back to them and then Kiba was running blindly back home, Hinata cradled protectively in his arms. He needed somewhere safe to treat her wounds and, oh gods, where was his big sister? Their house was burning and he couldn't see anything in the smoke. He needed the first aid kit!

Kiba kicked open the door to the family shrine, still untouched by the destruction, and carefully put Hinata on the floor, assuring her it'd be all right as he used his jacket to try and stem the flow of blood. She smiled at him, always smiling – stupid girl was dying and she smiled at him – and he was suddenly aware that he was crying and he couldn't hear her heart anymore and he'd have given anything if she'd just wake up.

He stood, numbly, shaking and stumbled backwards, the ancient swords clattering to the ground. He sunk against the table, sliding down and down until he rested on the floor. His fingers brushed against the braided cord wrapping the grip of the sword. He grabbed the sword angrily and tore it from the sheath, revealing a dulled ancient blade. Why couldn't he save her like he wanted to?

Suddenly, the ancient sword in his hand pulsed like a thing alive, the blade instantly sharpening as a ghostly blue light raced through the metal.

Kiba stared and then, just beyond the blade, there was movement near Hinata's body. Small, filthy little gray rat-like creatures were crawling all over her. His eyes narrowed in rage and he sprang forward, the glowing blade turning the little monsters into ash as it passed through them.

He stood over her protectively, panting hard, and wiped the tears from his face with a dirty sleeve.

Hinata's eyelids fluttered as she took a deep breath. "Kiba-kun?"

He turned, his eyes widening in disbelief. "Hinata! You're all right!"

Hinata smiled, sitting up, and his jacket slid off, revealing no trace of the fatal wound. It had healed completely.

His grandmother's stories drifted back to him for the first time in years: "The kami gifted our clan with two swords to protect our people: a sword that can slay a hundred evils and a sword that can restore a hundred lives. They rest now, sealed. No one has yet proved worthy to wield their power."

"Ne, Kiba-kun?" Hinata piped up, her expression one of curiosity. "What happened to you? Your hair - its gone white!"

The sword in Kiba's hand hummed with power as a powerful breath of air stirred the ancient tapestry and he could feel the eyes of the guardian kami fixed directly on him from the depths of the shrine.

Author's Notes:

Oh, hey, Sesshoumaru, are these your swords? You seemed to have left them here. The Progenitor story got me thinking "What about the Inuzuka clan?" And then I thought of Sesshoumaru and his cute little human ward Rin and I got this idea. Are the Inuzuka the part-youkai descendants of Sesshoumaru or are they the human descendants of Rin being granted power by Sesshoumaru? I'll let you decide. Regardless, the hair color change is on purpose - I wanted to drive home the point that there's a cost to using the swords.

I fixed the grammar up a bit. Stupid tense issues.

Interestingly, I first wrote this before the Pain Invasion started, so when Hinata got pwned by Pain, it was a very weird moment.