Lost and Found
"Uh...ahh!" Toboe jumped up and looked around frantically.
Hige, who was slumped back against the cave wall napping, opened an eye to glance at the younger wolf. "What's wrong runt?"
"My bracelets! I lost my bracelets!" Toboe said, searching around the cave they were resting in.
The three other wolves watched as Toboe scrambled around in search of his precious bracelets.
"Calm down," Kiba said. "Where did you have them last?"
"I always have them! But now I don't. They're gone!" Toboe cried.
"Chill out," Hige grumbled as he sat up and stretched his arms over his head. "It's just some stupid piece of jewelry. Bracelets are for girls anyway."
"It's not stupid!" Toboe yelled. "My Grandma gave them to me."
Hige shrugged. "It's still girly."
"For someone who wears a collar, you don't have room to talk." Tsume pointed out, glaring at the lazy wolf.
Hige snorted and leaned back, settling into a comfortable position and ignoring the others.
Kiba looked toward the mouth of the cave. "You must have lost them while we hunted."
"I've gotta find them," Toboe said, walking towards the mouth of the cave.
Kiba stood up. "I'll come with you."
"Thank you," Toboe said as he rushed outside.
Tsume watched them leave. With a sigh, he got to his feet and moved over to Hige. He nudged the other wolf with his toe.
Hige squinted up at him. "What?"
"Aren't you going to help them?"
"I'm tired." Hige whined.
"That's all you do. Sleep and eat." Tsume growled. "You could at least make yourself useful."
"I'm useful! I have the best nose around." Hige argued. Besides, I'm just here for Paradise."
"Paradise," Tsume sneered.
"Yeah. So what about you then? You don't seem to excited about Paradise, so why are you here?"
"It's better than rotting away in some city." Tsume shrugged. "You do what you want fatty." The gray wolf said as he walked out of the cave, leaving Hige behind.
"They've gotta be here somewhere," Toboe whined as he sniffed around in a pile of leaves. He and Kiba were slowly walking through a patch of woods where they'd chased down a deer earlier. Their scents were still fresh as they retraced their path, however the sun had set long ago and the moon was hanging lazily overhead. Even after an hour of searching, they had yet to see the glint of moonlight off Toboe's metal bracelets.
"Don't worry. We'll find them." Kiba assured the younger wolf as they followed the trail.
A twig snapped off to their right and Toboe jumped. Something scuttled away in the darkness and Toboe moved in closer to Kiba. The forest seemed alive around them and Toboe felt uneasy as they walked between the dark tree trunks. The white wolf nudged him along gently. Toboe whined as he pressed into the other wolf.
"We should go back." Kiba said finally. "It's too dark to search now."
"But, I need them." Toboe whimpered, his voice wavering.
"We'll look again in the morning when the light is better. They'll be easier to find then." The white wolf explained.
"Are you sure?"
Kiba nodded. "Yes. We'll find them Toboe."
"C'mon." Kiba turned around, waiting for Toboe to join him.
Toboe looked around at the shadowed forest, then at Kiba. An owl called out in the night and Toboe tensed. With a distressed whimper, he moved to follow Kiba. The young wolf pressed in close to Kiba's body, making it a little awkward to move, but Kiba stayed silent. He knew that the dark forest frightened the younger wolf, who had grown up sheltered in a city. The loss of his precious bracelets only made the situation harder on Toboe.
Kiba looked up suddenly as something approached. Toboe backed up, staying slightly behind the older wolf as Kiba growled in warning.
"Yo, it's only me," Hige called as he trotted up to them.
Kiba relaxed, looking at the other wolf curiously. "What are you doing out here?"
Hige sat in front of them and grinned. "I came to help. I couldn't sit in the cave all by myself."
"Where's Tsume?" Toboe asked, stepping closer.
"I dunno. He walked off."
"I hope he didn't go far." Toboe said softly.
"Who knows with that guy." Hige rolled his eyes. "Did you find your bracelets?"
"No," Toboe shook his head.
"It's too dark." Kiba explained. "We're going to try again in the morning."
Hige nodded. "Makes sense."
"Let's get back to the cave. We'll get some rest and try again when it's light out."
"You got it." Hige stood and turned back the way he came.
Together, the three wolves walked back to the cave. It was empty when they arrived. Kiba and Hige walked inside and settled down to sleep. Toboe watched them as they walked in a small circle before laying down and nestling next to each other, but he didn't join them. Instead, he sat at the mouth of the cave, looking out into the night. Both Tsume and his bracelets were out there and he just didn't feel comfortable sleeping when they were both missing. So, he sat watching the darkness for any sign of the gray wolf.
Tsume shook his head as he returned to the cave and found Toboe sleeping at its mouth. He walked forward and nudged the smaller wolf with his nose. Toboe groaned softly and blinked awake.
"Tsume?" He asked groggily.
"Yeah. Wake up kid. You should be sleeping inside."
"Was waiting for you." Toboe yawned.
"Well, I'm back now. Come inside." Tsume walked past Toboe and plopped himself down in the back of the cave.
Toboe stood up and yawned again. His claws scratched lightly against the rock as he stretched out. Slowly, he turned and moved into the cave. He looked at the white and brown pile of fur in one corner, then switched his gaze to meet the glowing eyes of Tsume.
Tsume pawed the ground. "Come here," he ordered.
Toboe walked over to the scarred wolf and hesitantly laid out beside him.
Tsume reached over and took Toboe's right paw in his hand. Toboe looked at him in confusion. Tsume silently pulled something from his shirt and slid it onto Toboe's leg.
"What?" Toboe looked at his leg. Four metal bands jingled as he moved his leg. "My bracelets!" He gasped, looking up at the other wolf with wide eyes.
"I found them while I was walking." Tsume said as he rested his head on his front paws.
Tsume closed his eyes. "Get some sleep kid."
"Tsume." Toboe crawled forward and nuzzled Tsume's cheek. "Thank you."
The other wolf gave him an annoyed look, but didn't say anything. He just shut his eyes and pretended to ignore Toboe's display of affection. Toboe smiled and moved a little closer to the gray wolf, snuggling into his warmth. He closed his eyes and easily drifted to sleep.
Tsume settled down again, but looked up as he felt eyes upon him. Across the cave, Kiba's golden eyes were studying him. Tsume nodded to him and the white wolf nodded back. Hige shifted beside Kiba and the white wolf turned away from Tsume to curled back around his friend. Tsume looked down at his own companion. He nudged the smaller form, moving him until he could curl around the smaller wolf. Finally satisfied, Tsume laid his head down next to Tomoe's and joined him in sleep.
Aww, how cute and fluffy ^_^ If you liked it (or maybe if you didn't) I do appreciate feedback. Throw me a bone here, I'll share it with the wolves.