Disclaimer: GDW is not mine. Some body else's (which is what not mine means!) The idea for Were-cougars is mine, and the idea behind this fic was inspired by comments made on the maleXtrowa ML;)

************
It was coming closer. He could feel it's hot breath on his back. Have to keep running! Can't let it catch me!

The boy never saw the root he tripped on. He never saw the creature that bit him. And mercifully, he lost conciseness quickly.

The boy who had taken the name Trowa Braton woke with a start. That nightmare/memory again. It always came when the moon waxed to full. He would have to leave soon. Wouldn't want Quatre to find out his horrible secret.

************

Trowa wondered the woods of earth aimlessly. He was lonely, but couldn't risk the chance of changing in front of anyone. Tonight or tomorrow night the change would come.

When that happened... well he wouldn't think about it.

*Snap*

He spun at the sound of a twig braking. And came face to face with an OZ patrol. In a panic (This close to the change, he wasn't thinking clearly) he lashed out. Gunfire echoed through the area. Pain blossomed through his side. Darkness clamed him.

************

When he came to, he knew the change was only minutes, maybe hours away. He turned and saw, "Duo?"

"Yeah, they got me to, Trowa."

Oh God, oh God, oh God NO! If I change and He's here, I could kill him!

"Trowa? You okay? You look real pail..." The braided youth reached for the stoic pilot, only to have him pull away.

"NO! Duo, please don't touch me."

"O-okay."

I have to get out! If I change here... Oh God! This can't be happening.

************

Duo had watched in confusion as Trowa began systematically searching the cell. *What the hell? *

When the guards came to take the jade-eyed youth away for questioning, he looked almost relieved. None of this made sense! Trowa HAD to be hiding something. The question was WHAT?

For his part, Trowa had heaved a silent sigh of relief when the guards had dragged him out of the cell. He would transform, kill the entire OZ personal, and insure Duo's escape. Then he could wait out the rest of the full moon in the woods.

All he had to do was hold out a bit longer.

************

In the white room, Trowa waited. They would interrogate him now. Rape and torture was a possibility. He wasn't afraid. When the OZ commander came, he would allow the change. They would all be killed.

The door slid open and a man dressed in an OZ general's uniform gazed at him from the doorway.

*Not yet, * he thought. *He needs to be closer. *

The General approached Trowa and ran his thumb over the captive's lower lip. Then, with out warning, he struck the youth across the face.

Trowa smiled as the change began.

************

Bones broke and set, skin prickled and fur grew. With a snarl that was far from human, Trowa fell to all fours. Seconds after it had started, the change was complete.

The Cougar that had once been Trowa lunged forward. The General was dead before he knew it, his throat ripped out by powerful jaws.

The big cat spun and lunged at the remaining guards. Their deaths were messy and painful. Then the creature raced down the corridor. The hunt was on.

*****

Duo escaped from the cell only to find carnage in the halls. It seemed as though some one had tried to paint the place with the blood of their victims.

He couldn't help it. He had never seen such a gory sight. Duo Maxwell, self-proclaimed Death, crumpled to his knees and vomited what little he had in his stomach.

When the dry heaves calmed, he staggered to his feet and lurched down the corridor. As he walked, the stench of blood and death filled his whole being. There were deep claw marks along the floor and walls. Almost as if a wild animal had done this.

But that didn't make any sense. Animals hunted for food. They would kill if cornered, protecting their cubs or if injured or ill. Was he dealing with a rabid animal?

Duo shuddered. Not a pretty thought.

He rounded the corner and came face to face with a grizzly site. It was a very large mountain lion tearing into an OZ guard. Duo stood wide-eyed and in shock. A fine red mist filled the air and the smell of blood was so strong, he could taste it in the back of his throat.

************

Cat feasted. He could not remember when the hunting had ever been this good. A noise caught his attention. He saw Long-hair. Long-hair did not smell right. Long-hair smelt ill. Long-hair needed to leave this place. Needed to go to Gold-hair and get better.

The decision was easy to make. One Cat saw as a cub-friend to it's Other needed help. So the Cat would give it.

Cat sprang forward and landed in front of Long-hair. Long-hair squeaked and smelt of fear. Why did Long-hair fear Cat? Worry later, Cat decided. First get Long-hair to Gold-hair.

That decided, Cat -shifted- into Man-cat. Long-hair fell to the floor. Long-hair must be ill, Man-cat decided as he picked Long-hair up. Then the Man-cat fled into the night.