Among the Wolves [Hakuouki] CHAPTER 1

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A small, ten year old girl ran through a forest, her teal hued eyes wide and alert. She kept glancing back occasionally to check if anyone was following her. The girl abruptly stopped to catch her breath. She leaned onto the bark of a tree and slowly slid to the ground. Her hand was still tightly wrapped around a sheathed katana she had been running through the forest with.

Suddenly, everything happened within a few seconds. The tree leaves above her head rustled and the next thing the girl knew was someone had tightly grabbed her from behind and cupped their hand over her mouth. The girl started struggling and immediately broke free. She tripped over a tree root and fell to the ground. There was silence in the air.

The sound of laughter filled the place as the girl on the ground stared up at the man who tried to attack her. The girl pouted. " really scared me" she said, glaring at her father. "Ah, Gomen Rin. What are you doing here in the forest anyways?". Rin immediately hid the katana behind her back and adverted her father's gaze. "Nothing. I just got bored so I came to play in here since it's near the house." Rin said, drawing circles in the dirt with her foot. Asai Ren [Rin's father's name >>"] smiled at his daughter. A gust of wind blew and the next thing Rin knew, her father was standing behind her. "And you're going to play with my katana in here? Interesting...". Rin immediately jumped to the side and turned around. "H-how do you do that?! You know I don't like it when you appear behind me like that daddy" Rin said, trying to change the subject. "Rin...I know what you're up to" Ren said, putting his hand on Rin's small head and ruffling her straight black hair. Rin stared at her father's warm smile and immediately knew she wouldn't be in trouble. Tears formed in her eyes. "Sorry I lied to you Daddy. It's just that there aren't any kids here to play with me and you and mommy are always busy and I feel lonely and you and mommy never allow me to go down to the town. And I also wanted you to teach me how to use a katana as well; I saw you training the other day and i've decided that I want to protect this country just how daddy does." Rin said quietly, rubbing the tears out of her eyes. Ren let out a soft laugh. "I'll teach you how to wield a katana" Ren stated, crouching down to hug the small girl. "And I'll even make you some transcripts with all the steps and techniques for when I'm busy, so you can learn by yourself too." "Ehh??! Really?! Thank you Daddy" Rin said, a grin replacing her frown.

For the next two years, Rin was trained by her father. She learned how to use a katana, but still had a lot more to learn. He even taught her how to aim and throw knives for long distance attacks. One day, Rin's father had some work in town and decided to take Rin along...

Rin calmly walked beside her father, hiding her excitement. It was her first time in a town. Her family had always stayed isolated from places with a lot of people around, she never knew why. "So do you like the town?" Ren asked her casually. "It's different..." Rin replied with a grin on her face. Ren suddenly stopped. "Oh?! Isami!! It's been a while." Ren said to a man with black hair and brownish eyes. "Ren! Where we're you all these years?! you suddenly disappeared from the dojo one day.". "Something came stuff. Are you still running the dojo?". "Yes..." Rin watched the two men talk, her head turning from one side to the other as is she were watching a tennis match. "Is that your daughter?" Kondou-San asked Ren, smiling. "Yes. This is Rin." Rin stepped out from behind her father and greeted Kondou-san. After a while of talking and catching up, Ren suddenly asked Kondou-San if he could take Rin to the dojo until he finished his work off. Kondou-San immediately agreed.

Soon enough, Rin walked along side Kondou-San towards the dojo. Excitement was bubbling up in her, but she managed to keep her calm look. As they neared the dojo, Rin couldn't manage to keep a poker face anymore. A grin crept across her face. Kondou- San looked down at the tiny child and smiled. "Your father said he taught you how to use a katana. Can you use it well?" he asked her. Rin shyly looked up at Kondou-San and smiled. "Daddy says I'm good, but I don't really think so" she said, looking at the ground again. Kondou-San laughed and patted Rin's head. We'll see about that. I have a student who's around your age. You can see how good you are when you spar with him." Rin's ears perked up when Kondou-San said "your age". She had never met anyone her age before. The excitement went over its peak at that moment: they had entered the dojo.

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