T he sky's turning dark. Dark clouds are gathering, blocking the sunlight that tries its best to make it through between the gaps. The wind is going hard; it's enough to blow away wet clothes drying outside. The sound of thunder rumbling is already heard from afar.

Raizel tightens his grasp on the red hood over his shoulders. He glances at his surrounding and adjusts the basket of food and drinks he's carrying on his arm, then makes a mental note.

He has to arrive at Frankenstein's house before the rain pours.

And that might be a challenge, because his house is not even in the city; it is in the middle of the forest in front of him. Well, not exactly in the middle, but still, it takes 30-minute walk to arrive there from the town gate. An hour if Raizel's being lazy.

The man often wonders why would his friend choose a not-so-strategic place far away from the city to build his house. Frankenstein is a skilled and recognized doctor, even among fellow doctors and medical workers in the town. With his reputation and wealth, he could just buy a house in the heart of the capital, yet he picked the woods, where there are spread dangers of wild animals.

A few drops of water on the cheeks snaps Raizel out of his pondering. He looks up at the grayish sky, then hurries his pace. He can't run since he's afraid he might make the stuff in his basket falls.

Raizel slows down when he's about 20 meters from the slightly open entrance door of Frankenstein's house. His pair of ruby eyes widen when he sees clear traces of blood from the woods to the door. Without much immediate thought except that Frankenstein might be hurt, Raizel bolts and pushes the door wide open. With hand on his sword's hilt, he runs through the guest room to wherever the traces lead him. They end in a bedroom, and the trails stop next to one of the beds there.

With someone covered under the blanket.

"Frankenstein?" Raizel steps carefully closer, not hiding the worry in his tone. No answer from the person on the bed. Raizel is about to uncover the blanket when a thought crosses his mind.

The man unsheathes his sword and tugs away the blanket with the blade.

Raizel holds his breath for a second.

A wolf.

There's a wolf on the bed.

The human-shaped wolf with wolf ears and tail, to be precise.

Raizel can't believe what he is seeing. Something this dangerous, in Frankenstein's house? Then where's Franken—

Raizel quickly raises his sword and blocks the claws that are about to slash his very face, then barely parries the second attack to his side.

If Raizel's reflexes aren't good, the wolf's claws that took him by surprise would have buried themselves in his face and stomach. He takes a deep breath. Raizel takes a fighting stance, swinging his sword slightly. The man expects more attacks and now he's ready for it.

Yet the wolf steps back.

Still, he focuses at the growling wolf in case there will be a surprise attack. Now that the distance between them is bigger, Raizel can see the wolf better. He's wearing unzipped green jacket baring his chest with fur on the hood and three-quarter pants that are torn on the hem. But one of the things that take his attention the most is the wolf's face. Gray hair framing his pale yet currently angry face, the fury in his eyes which color matches that is of his hairs', the scar on his lips…

The other thing is the wolf's leg that's trembling and bleeding through the loose bandages.

"You're injured," says Raizel, his eyes are on the torn wounds slowly revealed as the bandages open. Does that mean Frankenstein's taking care of this wolf? But why? Raizel and people in the town all know that wolves are dangerous predators. They hunt animals and unfortunate people passing by the woods. Why would Frankenstein take care of a wolf?

The wolf bares his fangs.

Raizel doesn't know if human-shaped wolves understand human language and are able to speak or not, but… "Why are you here? Is Frankenstein taking care of you?"

"Who the hell even are you?" The wolf does speak.

"…I should be the one asking that. Why is a wolf even in his house?"

"None of your business!" The wolf dashes to Raizel but he tripped over nothing and falls. He groans in pain as he holds his bleeding leg.

This is it. This should have been a moment when Raizel ends this wolf's life, so there will be less danger around the woods and especially Frankenstein's house … but his gut feeling says that he shouldn't do that.

The wolf shakily gets up on all four when Raizel raises his chin with the end of his blade, "Answer me."

He waits until the wolf pays full attention to him before he continues, "Is Frankenstein taking care of you? Where is he now?"

The wolf must feel the futility to try to go against a fit man with a sword in his condition because he doesn't fight back—except when he swats away Raizel's sword.

"…Yeah," The wolf answers as he struggles to stand. He squints at his leg when it hurts even more and he grimaced.

"I don't know where he is now."

Raizel raises an eyebrow.

"He went outside in a hurry, okay?" The wolf quickly added, seeing the distrust in the man's face. "I didn't hurt him or anything!"

Well, Raizel also thinks it's almost impossible for a wolf with injured leg to hurt Frankenstein. Besides, Frankenstein allowed this wolf in his house, meaning that either he knows him personally or the doctor deems the wolf harmless enough to remain docile. The hooded man also notices that the injuries on the wolf's leg doesn't seem it was caused by a gunshot, so it might not be Frankenstein who attacked him. Raizel sheathes his sword to the wolf's surprise.

"I don't think you're lying," says Raizel as the wolf stares in disbelief. A glint of alertness is still present, but Raizel has no plan to fight him further. As he said no more words, he walks back to the entrance. It is when he walks into the pouring rain that he stumbles upon a blond, tall man.

The wolf peeks over the door frame. "Frankenstein!"

"Frankenstein, where have you been?" Raizel retreats to give Frankenstein the way. "Why did you leave the door open?"

"Oh!" Azur eyes widen for a second, then Frankenstein closes the door this time. His eyes stop at the blood traces in the wood flooring. His face scrunches.

"I need to clean this, and the ones in the woods too," Frankenstein shakes his head in exasperation. "The hunters might find out a wolf has entered my house."

"Right, about that,"

Frankenstein turns to the man with the red hood. "Raizel! Long time no see." He gives Raizel a friendly hug, to which the latter reciprocates.

Raizel immediately pulls back when he remembers that he has questions. "Frankenstein, are you tending to a wolf? I saw an injured one in the bedroom—"

The doctor's eyes go round as he rushes to the said bedroom. His mouth goes agape seeing his patient on the floor.

"M! What happened?" Frankenstein rushes to the gray wolf's—M's—side and lets out a gasp as he notices the the injured leg is bleeding and no longer bandaged, "Your wounds are open again!"

He spares no wasted time going through a cabinet in the same room for a medical kit and tend to the wounds. Occasionally the wolf flinches when the doctor applies some antibiotics. Raizel stands next to the door, watching whatever Frankenstein is doing to the wolf's leg.

After he's done, Frankenstein lifts the wolf by the knees and back.

"Wha—don't carry me like this!" M strangles Frankenstein's neck lightly as a protest.

"Then how you want me to carry you? On my shoulder like I'm kidnapping you?"

"No…" M turns his face away as Frankenstein puts him on the patient bed he just slept on before.

Frankenstein sighs, "Just stay like this for now. Your wounds are quite severe, you need time to heal," to which the wolf replies with a nod. The blond man takes some steps back so both Raizel and M are in vision. "Alright, what happened here?"

"He attacked me. I only defended myself," Raizel quickly answers, not wanting to be blamed by the doctor. Frankenstein glances at M, demanding an answer.

"Yeah, I did," M says as he glares at the red-eyed man. "I thought he was a hunter. You can't blame me."

Frankenstein let out a sigh then glanced at Raizel, "At least you're not hurt by M."

The tailed man growls.

"And M, he's not a hunter. He's my friend, Raizel."

"Right. Whatever."

The doctor tells the wolf to rest up, something that the latter wishes he doesn't have to do; he complains that it's boring to stay still in bed. Leaving some light meal and drink on the bedstand in case the wolf gets hungry (and bored), Frankenstein leaves M alone as to not disturb his rest. In the parlour, he delightfully unpacks what Raizel has brought him, and he decides to share it with him while waiting for the rain to subside.

"The hunters you've mentioned before," Frankenstein pours some wine to both his glass and Raizel's, then glances to his guest, "what are they hunting?"

Frankenstein raises an eyebrow, as if telling Raizel that the answer is obvious. "Wild animals?" he says as he and Raizel toast and sip the drink.

"And you … saved that wolf from those hunters?"

There's a second of silence.

"Wolves aren't the ones these hunters are hunting,"

Frankenstein takes the bottle and pours some more into his glass.

"But the wolves hunt humans."

"That's what people said. It's actually not true."

Raizel frowned upon what he has heard. "What do you mean?" Is Frankenstein saying that people in the town lied? Raizel always knows and keeps in mind that wolves are dangerous. Sometimes they hunt humans because they eat mostly meat. He heard that the human-shaped ones do eat plants too—even he heard that they cook their meal like humans. But the fact that they still have wolf instinct means they might, and probably will if they have the chance, hunt and eat humans. This is why Raizel is sometimes worried about Frankenstein living in the forest.

"They don't hunt humans. They still hunt wild animals, but not humans. Just like us, hunting the wild animals but not wolves. In fact, they stay away from humans unless the humans cause harm to their … species, if you want to call them that."

"But there are actual victims, the news keeps spreading."

"Ah." Frankenstein tilts his head to the side, "The victims which number keeps increasing in the past few weeks?"

Raizel nods.

Frankenstein lets out a condescending giggle, "And you're so sure the ones behind it are wolves, why…?"

"They hurt us first."

Raizel and Frankenstein promptly turn to the direction of the bedroom. M's standing by the doorway, his injured leg limps.

"I told you to lay down!" Frankenstein grumbles as he rises from his seat. He mutters something about M possibly letting his leg bleeds and the wounds open again, while Raizel stares at the wolf with unreadable expression.

M struggles to free himself as Frankenstein's about to lift him back to the bed. With how strong and bigger Frankenstein is, he yells at Raizel's direction, "I don't know why the humans are hurt, but our kind never hurt humans first!"

Raizel glowers, "So you're saying that humans are the first ones who hurt you wolves?"

"All right all right, let me be the one who tell him that, okay? Now go back to sleep or I'm going to lock you in this room until you recover for real."

As Frankenstein 'helps' M gets back to the bed while the wolf stubbornly rebels (and fails), Raizel stares at the closed door in cold bewilderment. Raizel understands that human-shaped wolves are different from the wolves he usually sees (besides the obvious shape difference), but wild creatures are wild creatures. They are dangerous. There's a reason why Raizel brought his sword today.

But, just like before, he feels like the wolf wasn't lying.

"You saw his wounds, right? The ones on his leg?"

Raizel nods at the question.

"He's caught in a trap. I found a lot of them further in the woods."

Deep red eyes widen. So that's what caused the torn injuries on the wolf's leg.

"What are they for?"

"Trapping wild animals. The hunters set them there."

Frankenstein then begins to explain this new method local hunters use to hunt, as Raizel just visits the town after a long time. They put traps in the woods to catch animals. Rifles are noisy, so when shooting an animal, other animals who heard of the gunshot will flee. So, despite keeping a rifle, some hunters start putting traps in the woods. He then complains how sometimes these traps are blocking his way into the woods to collect herbs and other useful plants and fruits.

"Even some doctors here complain that it's harder to collect herbs because of the traps," Frankenstein shakes his head, "They're forced to pay more to people whom they hire to collect herbs because the job gets more dangerous than before."

"And the wolf caught himself in one of those traps."

"Yes. Ugh, that, too…" Frankenstein sighs for the umpteenth time. "Those hunters don't even care if wolves get caught in the traps, as long as it doesn't kill them."

Raizel hummed in understanding.

"I appreciate you telling me all this, because I'm going to stay in this town for a while."

"No problem, I'm—wait, what?"

Raizel are now looking at the wide-eyed doctor who stands in shock, "I'm staying for a while. In the town."

"What's the occasion?"

The man scratched his cheek, "Vacation?"

The doctor gives him an unimpressed look.

"I have my reasons. I won't bother you too much, don't worry."

"Keeping secrets now, are we?" Frankenstein sits back with an amused huff, "Did you come here alone?"


"As expected of the runaway young prince."

Raizel glares at the blond over that remark. "I'm not running away."

The rain hasn't stopped and it's getting darker outside. Frankenstein assumes that the rain won't stop until night, so he tells Raizel to stay for the night and readies a room for him, to which Raizel is grateful for.

"I'm going to prepare dinner, would you mind doing me a favor, Raizel?"

Raizel perks his head up. "Sure, what is it?"

"Please wake M up, it's dinner time and he might be hungry now."

Frankenstein hears no response, so he turns around at the other man.

"Hey, don't give me that face," The doctor chuckles at Raizel's slightly irritated face. Frankenstein's probably one of only few people who can read the raven-haired man's poker face. "Just think of it as a way to make up with him."

"Why should I?" Raizel curved his lips in displeasure, "It's not like I'll meet him again, anyway."

"Oh, why do you think that?"

"Because he's a wolf and I live in the town."

"Except when you're visiting me," said Frankenstein, stirring the soup he's cooking. "He visits me a lot."

Raizel stares at the back of the doctor in disbelief. "Why?"

"Reasons. Also, sometimes he helps me collect herbs and other stuff."

Raizel sighs in exasperation. He can't believe his friend now has acquaintanced a wolf. It's still hard to accept when all this time he's told to be wary of the wolves, even though they never hurt humans before the local news.

Raizel walks his way inside the bedroom. M's napping peacefully, his chest rising and lowering in consistent rhythm. He stands there, putting the image of the human-shaped wolf in his mind. His hair doesn't cover his face anymore, and Raizel can now see that the wolf doesn't have human ears on the side; a strange sight which slightly put him off at first. The wolf ears are also relaxed. Another thing he notices that the wolf ears are … fluffy. They look really warm and full of fur. His tail looks even more fluffy. It lies just between the sleeping man's legs.

Raizel pushes away the urge to touch it.

He's now thinking hard how is he going to wake the wolf up, since they have quite a beef few hours ago. He decides to very creatively shake the wolf's shoulder. "Mr. Wolf, please wake up. Frankenstein's preparing dinner."

Unexpectedly the wolf wakes up immediately. His eyes blink lethargically before he notices that it's the man he attacked before who's waking him up.


"Dinner." Raizel points to the kitchen with his chin.

The wolf's ears flatten. "Are you saying that I have to go walk to the dining room in this condition?"

Raizel falls silent.

The wolf looks at the man unimpressed. "Why do you even bother waking me up?"

"Frankenstein told me to."

"Ugh, that guy," M scratched his head. "Go away."

"I've come all this way to wake you up, yet you tell me to get out." Raizel's expression turns to faint disappointment, and the wolf cringes.

"What do you want?!"

Raizel doesn't know why he even prolongs this unfriendly conversation with the wolf. Though, he must admit that this wolf is probably one of very few people who actually yells at him in his entire life. He's not used to blatant hostility directed at him, yet he has to do Frankenstein a favor.

"Nothing. I'll just tell Frankenstein to bring your dinner here, then." Raizel says coldly as he leaves the room.

Raizel wakes up in the early morning. He takes a look outside; the sun is still hiding under the horizon, but the rain has stopped and the soil seems damp. The rain might just stop only a few hours ago. Raizel is grateful there's no storm.

He tidies up his bed and walks outside. He sees the wolf in front of Frankenstein's room. His ears tip to Raizel's direction when he notices his presence.

At Raizel's questioning stare, M speaks up, "What?"

"Frankenstein hasn't woken up."

"I know."

Raizel eyes the wolf as he lets out a sigh and walks slowly to sit on the sofa in the living room.

"How's your leg?"

"Huh?" The wolf seems surprised that he asks such a question. His ears twitch, yet soon become relaxed. The look on his face shows that he still has a disliking towards Raizel, although not as bad as in the previous day. His lips flatten before he answers, "It has healed, just not fully."

Raizel nods. He saunters to the sofa as the wolf eyes him warily, his ears perk up and turn to his direction. He makes sure to not make fast movement so the wolf doesn't feel threatened. He sits right on the seat across the wolf. The wolf frowned upon the unexpected gesture.

"Still, I think you shouldn't walk too much."

The ashen-haired man huffs, "Hmph. You're worried now?"

"Yes. After all, I'm the one who made you move your leg too much yesterday."

Raizel answers while he stares straight at the wolf's wide dark pearly eyes. Raizel wants to show that he means what he said. He has let what Frankenstein said last night sunk in. He thought of the wolves' point of view. They feel threatened by the hunters, and the traps don't make it better. M was just being cautious, especially after he got his leg in the trap. He was vulnerable and tried to put up defence.

He also wants the wolf to see him in a good light. He seems to know Frankenstein personally, and Raizel doesn't want to be an enemy of Frankenstein's friend.

"I'm sorry about yesterday."

The wolf blinks a few times. "Uhh," He scratches his ear, "It's fine. I was in the wrong, too, for suddenly attacking like that."

"It is a misunderstanding, indeed."

The wolf averts his gaze to the side. It focuses back on Raizel when he stands and walks to the kitchen. When he's back, there are two glasses of water in his hands. He puts one in front of M.

"You might be thirsty."

M stares at the glass, then back to Raizel who sits back. "Why are you…"

Raizel sips his water as he looks at the wolf.

"…being nice to me now?"

It takes Raizel a while before he replies, "It's partially an apology, and partially a way to show you that I do not antagonize you anymore."

"Huh. You're the one who said wolves hunt humans."

Well. Raizel still has that belief, but he's willing to give them the benefit of doubt because of what Frankenstein told him last night. Frankenstein and this wolf know each other personally too…

"For now, I'll put my trust in you and Frankenstein, regarding this matter."

The wolf doesn't say anything more after that, staring at Raizel, then to the window while sipping his water. His ears don't tip to Raizel's direction anymore.

It's fascinating to Raizel how not only his face and whole body, but also his ears and tail are as expressive. He might haven't seen much, but from when they talked to each other, Raizel noticed the movement of the ears; this reminds him when they first met each other, the wolf's ears flattened to the point of almost sticking to his head, but now they're pointing upward and out. They also tipped when Raizel spoke to him before.

It's … cute, in a way?

Raizel shakes his head at the thought. It's something normal for the wolves, why did he even think so?


The wolf's gaze and ears are shifted to an open hand directed at him.

"I haven't introduced myself properly. I'm Cadis Etrama Di Raizel."

The wolf man blinks in surprise. He takes the hand.


"…Just M?"

"What's with it?"


Raizel eyes some old scars in the wolf's hand. He wouldn't notice them if he didn't pay close attention, since they almost fade. The wolf probably got it from rough fighting with the wild, he guesses. Wild life for a wild creature.

"Also, your name is so long. I'll just call you Rai."

"Rai…" The crimson-eyed man repeats the nickname, huffing in mirth, to which M raises an eyebrow.

Raizel shifts to a more comfortable sitting position. His eyes are busy observing the wolf in front of him. Seems like the wolf's doing the same to him.

"You seem to have questions," Raizel says.

M clears his throat at Raizel's remark. "So, you're friends with Frankenstein?"


"How long? I never saw you before."

That's exactly what Raizel thought of M, too. "You can say we've been friends for … years."

The wolf's ashen eyes widen. "No way."

Raizel and Frankenstein indeed have been friends for years. Raizel doesn't visit Frankenstein often because his hometown is quite far from this town that is Frankenstein's. They occasionally send letters to ask how are they doing. That, until Raizel decides to live in this town for a while. But these details are not in immediate need to be said.

"How about you? I never saw you, either."

"Well," M scratches his head, "He found me when I was badly injured deep in the forest. He saved me, and now we often see each other."

Raizel puts a hand in his chin.

"I sometimes help him collect herbs and other stuff in this forest."

Raizel nods in understanding.

"Also, his tea and sandwiches are so good. He likes to make that as lunch and gives some to me."

A few more nods from Raizel, this time more prominent.

Raizel makes a mental note to visit Frankenstein during lunchtime so he might be able to get a bite from those sandwiches.

A few moments later Frankenstein comes out of his room. His hair's still somewhat messy and he's still in his sleepwear. He abruptly stops a yawn when he notices the black-haired man, "Good morning, Raizel."

"So you greet this guy only, now?" The wolf mutters, pouting.

"M! What the hell are you doing here? Your leg—"

"It doesn't hurt as much as before anymore, okay?" M says as he tries to escape Frankenstein's grasp again. Raizel holds in a giggle, letting out an amused sigh in the process. Frankenstein's always protective to people whom he cares about, he has seen it himself. Which means he does care and is close with the wolf. They must have known each other when Raizel didn't visit Frankenstein for a long time.

"Look, you bandaged my leg so tightly the blood stops flowing to my foot entirely." The gray-haired man says as he points at his bandaged leg. Frankenstein shakes his head with an unimpressed look, "Bandages are supposed to be tied tightly, you know. Also, if you think that's tight, you haven't seen me tying up people."

"I … might don't want to see that, thank you."

Raizel stands up, then turns to face Frankenstein, "I'm going back. Thank you for letting me stay here, Frankenstein."

"Why so early?"

"I don't want to bother you too much with my presence." He puts on his sword belt, "also you're busy."

Frankenstein tilts his head in agreement.

After preparing himself to set out, Raizel waves the two a goodbye before pacing towards the entrance door.

And turns around.

His eyes are on the gray wolf for a while, long enough for the wolf to notice the length and scrunch his eyebrows. Then he disappears as he closes the door.

Frankenstein grins amusedly at the confused wolf.

(I didn't draw scenes from this fanfic, but I have their initial designs drawn months ago. Raizel's had gone thru some minor changes that you can see in other art of this AU on my Tumblr (or Twitter, if you're so determined to dig deep lel).)