I groan as I begin to wake up. I blink my eye open, immediately blown away by waves of pain. I close my eye again, wincing from the pain. I cry out sharply, the pain intensifying. I feel a paw touch my left shoulder. I look to see Taisley sitting beside me. I open my mouth to speak, only to gasp. I whimper and squirm. Taisley strokes my forehead. "Don't worry, Buck. Everything will be alright," she whispers into my ear.

I look up at Taisley. "I don't feel fine, Tais. 't 'urts…I…I can't…can't…take 't…" I break off with a whimper. Tears are streaming from my left eye.

"I know it hurts, Buck. Hush, now. Just get some more sleep," Taisley kisses me lightly on my lips.

I close my eye. I try to get back to sleep. However, I can still feel the pain. It's shooting through my whole body. I whimper, before finally letting out a scream from the agonizing pains. Taisley strokes my forehead, trying to calm me down. It works. Taisley's touch does soothe me. I relax. After a little while, I finally manage to fall asleep.

The next time that I wake up, Taisley is no longer by my side. Instead, both of my parents are sitting by me. I squirm, gasping slightly from the pain. "Mom, dad, where's Taisley?" I ask.

Dad puts his paw on my forehead. "She's in our cave, watching over th' kits. She didn't want them ta bother ya," dad explains.

"Dad…wot 'appened wi' Thomas?" I ask, my voice hoarse.

"'e…'m afraid that 'e escaped…" Dad explains.

I groan, this time from annoyance rather than pain. I really hate him. If he did escape, then he could come after us again. I don't want anything to happen to Taisley and our kits. "Do ya think that he'll come back?" I ask.

Dad pauses, before answering, "I don't know, but if 'e does, 't won't be fer a while. I beat 'im up quite a bit."

"But…'e was yer son…" I am completely confused.

"Yes, an' 'e tried ta kill ya. Don't forget, yer also my son," dad smiles down at me.

I smile back. My smile disappears as pain continues to shoot through me. I look up at dad. My throat is burning. I reach out and grab dad's paw. "Can…can I 'ave some water?" I ask.

Dad nods his head. "I'll be right back," dad strokes my cheek. He gets up and leaves the cave.

Mom continues to sit beside me, shushing my frequent whimpers as the pain continues to strike me. "Hush, son. Th' pain will go away. I promise," mom strokes my forehead. I lean my head into her paw, seeking the comfort that only a mother could give.

"Mom…I…I love ya…" I whisper. I squirm a little more. This time, I'm not squirming just because of the pain. I'm squirming because I have to go. I'd rather not, though, considering that I'd need someone's help. That is one thing that I don't want to have anyone help me do.

Mom obviously sees me squirming. "Are ya alright?" She asks.

"'m fine…" I lie. I try to ignore my growing discomfort. I can't ignore it, though. I look up at mom, knowing that I won't be able to hide it from her. "I…I kinda…'ave ta go…um…" I trail off, embarrassed.

Mom's eyes widen. She knows what I'm getting at. "Don't worry, Buck. I'll 'elp ya," mom strokes my forehead. She can see the look of growing discomfort on my face. Mom helps me stumble to my paws. We take a few paces from my nest.

I stop, causing mom to stop with me. "Mom, I…'m no' gonna make 't…" I whimper. I know that I'm about to wet myself. I look at mom, a pleading look on my face.

Mom puts her paw on my shoulder. "It's alright, Buck. Just go. I won't tell anyone."

I look at mom. "Are ya sure?" I whimper the question. I am almost literally bursting.

"Yes, Buck. 'm sure. Just go," mom replies.

I know that I don't have a choice. Whimpering, with my ears pressed against my head, I let myself go. I begin to wet myself. A puddle forms beneath me. I continue to go until my bladder fully empties. My face reddens. I bury my face into mom's fur, trying to hide from my embarrassment.

Mom strokes my forehead. "It's alright, Buck. Don't be embarrassed. 't 'appens ta everyone," she tries to soothe me.

I look up at mom. Tears are gathered in the corner of my left eye. "But mom, I…I wet myself…I…I acted like a kit!" I wail softly, making sure that no one outside would hear me.

"Buck, kits aren't th' only ones that wet themselves. Everyone does at some point, even when they grow up. I'm sure yer fathah already told ya this," mom points out while trying to soothe my embarrassment.

"Yeah, 'e did," I reply.

"Good, 'cause he's right." Mom smiles at me. She helps me lay back down on my nest. "Get some sleep. I'll clean up th' cave," mom kisses my forehead.

"'m sorry, mom," I whisper.

"Don't be sorry. It's alright," mom smiles. I smile back. I close my eye. I am asleep within seconds.

I wake up maybe a few hours later. I can see that, not only is the cave clean from what happened before, but I am also clean. That must be mom's doing. I wonder if she told dad, yet. Despite her promise, there would've been no way to hide it from him.

I look around the cave. I see dad a few steps away from the nest, talking to mom. "Dad?" I call out.

Dad turns around and comes up to my side. He kneels down next to me. "Yer mothah told me that ya wet yerself. She mostly told me because I walked in before she could clean 't up. Don't worry 'bout 't. We didn't tell Taisley or yer kits," dad assures me.

"Thanks. Um…where are Taisley an' our kits?" I ask.

"I don't…" Dad begins. He doesn't have the time to finish when Taisley and our kits come in.

Taisley starts to make her way towards me. "How are you feeling?" She asks.

"'m fine," I smile at my mate. Her stomach is quite large. The kits could be born at any time, now.

Right on queue, Taisley gives a sudden gasp. She clutches her stomach, wincing with pain. "I…I think…the kits are coming…" Taisley gasps. Her eyes widen. I can see a liquid trickling from her. "My water broke…" Taisley continues. She falls to her knees, crying out from pain.

Mom rushes to Taisley's side. She helps Taisley lay down. "Alright, Taisley, 't won't be long. Just keep breathing," mom orders her. Thankfully, Taisley listens to mom.

Dad steps forward and brings our kits outside. This is nothing that they should be seeing.

I sit up and look towards my mate. I can see her nervousness. "Don't worry, Tais. Everything will be just fine," I whisper, smiling.

I am relieved to see Taisley return my smile. Mom examines Taisley. "Alright! Th' first kit is on its way! Now, push!" Mom orders.

Taisley pushes out our first kit. I can already see that it's a boy. Two more boy kits follow in quick succession. Finally, after a few more minutes, a little girl kit is born. All four of our newborn kits are beautiful. Mom helps Taisley clean the goop off of our kits, seeing as Taisley is exhausted after giving birth.

I sit over by Taisley, careful of my injuries. "They're beautiful," I whisper.

"Yeah, they are. What should we name them?" Taisley asks.

"Hm…well, 'ow 'bout Darren an' Samuel for our first two kits. Do ya wanna name th' others?" I ask.

"Sure. Well, we could name our youngest boy kit Jasper. Our little daughter I'd like to name Laurel," Taisley finishes.

"Those sound perfect. Now, let's get our oldest kits in 'ere. I bet they'd like ta meet their younger siblings," I suggest.

Taisley nods her head in agreement. Dad brings Raska, Talo, Frost, and Whisper inside. They come over to us. Their little faces peek out at our four newest kits. "Awww…" Our oldest four kits all whisper with awe.

"Yeah. Meet yer new younger brothahs an' sistah. We named them Darren, Samuel, Jasper, an' Laurel," I introduce the kits, pointing to each of them in turn. We watch as our older kits become acquainted with our younger kits. We look at each other and smile. Our kits are here. Thomas is gone. We may never see him again. Things can never be better.