Title: Frost (sequel to In the Dead of Winter)Words: 5, 397Characters: Shiroi, Muka, Ke, Toki, Mendoo, ninja birds, and other extra necessary ones.Rating: M (some sexual content)Author’s Notes/Summary: Influenced by several prompts, mainly 061: Winter and 024: Family. Let’s hope I got Toki and Mendoo right. :D Mendoo and Toki found Shiroi in the back of their yard practically frozen. Now it’s a fight to keep him alive. Will the albino survive, or will his prolonged exposure to the cold take the ultimate toll? What will the ones that care for him do?Mendoo leapt from frozen branch to frozen branch with a red vile carefully packed in his weaponless weapon’s pouch. His scowl was fierce at having to leave Toki all alone with Shiroi. It’s not that he cared, because he didn’t, it was because Toki asked him to leave that he wasn’t in the manor. Toki was…fragile, was the word that the orange haired ninja supposed was looking for, especially after he used that jutsu. Frowning, Mendoo left the trees for the building tops and, quick as possible, made his way to the hospital. In record time, he entered and was shown to Toki’s doctor.“What is wrong with Toki-kun now, Mendoo-kun?” the chipper doctor asked. Mendoo never liked doctors. Mendoo waved the doctor off. “It’s not Toki,” Mendoo explained, quite civilly for him, as he fished around in his weapons pouch, finally pulling out the vile of the albino’s blood. “I need a transfusion for this blood type.” The doctor took the vile, examining it in the fluorescent light. “I’ll do some tests and get back to you,” was all the doctor said as he left Mendoo in the room. “Better fucken hurry,” was Mendoo’s growled reply. ----------Toki had dragged the hypothermic albino to the bathroom and filled the bathtub with cold water before putting Shiroi in. The water almost immediately turned pink. Toki determinedly pulled Shiroi’s clothes off in an attempt to raise the albino’s body temperature. The more he tugged, cut, ripped and pulled the rags that were once Shiroi’s clothes off the Tsukinin, the water turned more, and more red. Toki frowned when he actually found the albino’s skin among the layers of bloody clothing and water. The skin was…shredded. Toki watched the skin move in a way skin wasn’t supposed to as the injured Shiroi painfully breathed. The water was red.Toki pulled the drain out of the tub and turned the water on, slowly raising the water of the tub. He was aware that Shiroi’s teeth were chattering uncontrollably. “…ck.”Had Shiroi spoken.“Shiroi-kun?” Toki questioned. Surely the shinobi wasn’t conscious already.“S-s-s…y…you didn’t know,” the albino mumbled incoherently. The albino’s face scrunched up, reopening his frost-torn lips. Toki watched, entranced, as the albino experienced some ghost from his past, precious blood that he couldn’t afford to lose running down his chin. “S-s-s-suk-k-k-ki d-d-d-didn’t-t mean it-t-t-t.” Red-tinged water splashed onto the floor as Shiroi’s shivering became violent. It wasn’t good, but it wasn’t bad either. It showed that his body temperature was coming up. “Shiroi-kun?” Toki called as the albinio continued to thrash. The albino cringed as if slapped before he settled down. Toki’s concern was piqued again. He had to get some muscle relaxers into the ninja so he wouldn’t thrash while he stitched his wound closed. He again raised the temperature of the water. Toki thought again as he examined the wound, seeing bone and tendon in some places. Would giving the ninja muscle relaxers be beneficial or put him in more danger. “NO!” Shiroi yelled again, some time later, and began thrashing more violently. It suddenly struck Toki that Shiroi didn’t like heat. He had a great fear of it. “Shiroi-kun! SHIROI-KUN LISTEN TO ME!” Toki shouted, almost in tears from emotional turmoil and exhaustion, over the albino’s shouts. “You have to settle down! Please, don’t make me take drastic actions!” His words fell on cold, dead ears as the albino continued to thrash, putting himself in more danger of worsening his injuries. “Hurry back, Mendoo-kun,” Toki said to himself as he fetched some rope. Shiroi couldn’t do this; he’d end up hurting himself more. “I’m so sorry, Shiroi-kun.”----------“Mendoo-kun, who’s blood is this?” “What the hell?” Mendoo-kun started awake. He was as tired as hell from his mission with Toki. He had fucken fallen asleep waiting for the fricken test results?“Who’s blood is this, Mendoo-kun?” The doctor repeated. Mendoo gave the doctor an appraising glare. “A fucking friend of the family. Why?” “I have a few nurses looking for a blood type that it will be compatible with it,” the doctor explained. “But I highly doubt they’ll find any.”“Why the fuck not?” Mendoo demanded in a rough growl. The doctor wasn’t fazed by Mendoo’s temper. He’d had to deal with it on several occasions when Toki came into the hospital. “Your friend has a negative blood type--” “Sorry for the intrusion. Here are the final test results, Doctor,” A nurse said as she entered the room.“Thank you,” the doctor said as he grabbed the paper and examined it. His face paled.“What village is your friend from?” “Why?”“Because if I don’t know, there’s a high possibility that your friend will die!” The doctor exclaimed.“Tsukigakure.” Mendoo paused. “His mother was a Yukinin.”“Ah, the Yukinin,” the doctor muttered, mulling over the information. “They’re predominately negative, especially the mountainous clans…Tsukigakure has some negative, predominantly in the Shinwa Clan…”“What?” Mendoo demanded. He hated not having all the information. “You know about blood types, right, Mendoo-kun?” the doctor asked. He received a glare and a growl. The doctor, sweating lightly, pushed his glasses back up his nose and continued. “O positive is the universal donor, AB positive is the universal acceptor. A and B positive respectively accept A positive and B positive; both accept O positive. AB positive can accept either A positive or B positive and O positive. The same goes for the negatives.”“So being an O blood is good then?” Mendoo asked. The doctor sighed.“A person with positive blood can only accept positive blood while a person with negative blood can only be given negative blood in a transfusion. O blood is a universal donor, however, it can only accept that type: O.“You’re friend is O negative,” The doctor finished. “I’d never thought I’d see a ninja with O negative blood in my life. It’s very rare.”A beeping at his belt refocused both persons attention. A hopeful smile took up the doctor’s face. “The nurse has found something.”Mendoo followed the doctor out the door and down several hallways. He hated hospitals. Their sharp, antiseptic smell burned his nose. Before he knew it, he was in a much cooler room; almost cold.“The fuck? What the hell?” Mendoo swore. He was beyond courtesy. “This is where we keep the blood we use in transfusions,” The doctor explained. “We found a few packets of O negative blood,” A nurse said, “but we don’t know if they’re still viable.” She handed them to the doctor to examine. Out of the seven packets of blood, only three were able to be given to Mendoo; one of which was questionable. “I need to keep some, just in case another accident like this happens,” the doctor explained. “It’s not everyday that I get Yukinin to donate blood. Besides, these blood packets are rather old.” Mendoo nodded. “You still have all the equipment from the last time Toki was hurt, right?” the doctor asked.Mendoo nodded. “He’ll need the respirator,” the doctor said. He fished around in a room full of medicines. “And make sure this is in a drip as well as…” Mendoo only half heartedly listened to the doctor go off on his jargon about this and that. He had the blood, some IV fluids, antibiotics and gauze. The doctor yelled something at him he just caught as he sprinted down the hall. He jumped out the window of the nearest room, ignoring its occupants, and made his way back to Toki’s manor house.----------Toki had no choice but to give Shiroi muscle relaxers. The Tsukinin wouldn’t stop thrashing; preventing his bleeding chest from clotting properly. He had somehow managed to move Shiroi from the bathtub to the guest bedroom, getting him dried and out of anything wet in the process. Ever so carefully, the pretty brunette stitched up the ugly wounds on the albino’s chest. He was very careful around his left side. The way the wounds were, it looked like his attacker had been aiming, possibly, for his head. From the direction of the slashes, Toki guessed the albino had jumped up and back as his opponent lunged at him. For several inches at the top of the left slash, Toki could see Shiroi’s ribs and cartilage. He shuddered involuntarily. He continued sewing Shiroi up as the albino gasped for breath; more pale than ever and fighting the most important fight he had ever been engaged in: the fight for his life.Toki wiped sweat from his brow some time later and made a face. He needed a bath and a yukata. He had turned the heat up and piled blankets on Shiroi, but the albino’s body temperature was as stubborn as the man was conscious. It was barely rising! IF it was rising at all!! From deep in the house, Toki heard the door open and shut. “Mendoo-kun! I’m in the guest room~!” Toki called to his lover. The exhausted ninja smiled when he saw his orange haired lover walk into the room laden with two medical satchels. Toki giggled when Mendoo’s scowl deepened. “Doctor said to put him on the respirator and hook up a drip and a transfusion,” Mendoo told his petite lover. Toki’s giggles ceased and he became somber once again. He nodded and helped Mendoo bring the necessary supplies from an adjacent room to the one Shiroi was in. When they got him hooked up to oxygen, his breathing seemed to ease. A ghost of Toki’s smile returned to his face and Mendoo, secretly of course, was glad that his love found some kind of happiness out of the whole situation. How morbid.Mendoo wiped sweat off of his forehead.“What the fuck?” he exclaimed as he wiped damp hands on his pants. “Why the hell is it so fucken hot in here?” “Shiroi-kun needs the warmth,” Toki admonished him, “although, his temperature isn’t improving much.” He was quiet for a second before he suddenly took in Mendoo’s appearance.“Oh goodness!” the brunette exclaimed. “Get out of those dirty clothes right now! Go take a bath! Or a shower! I’ll make you something to eat! Hurry up! You’re getting the house dirty and then I’ll have to clean it!”Mendoo, growling, went and took a shower. He didn’t know that a white raptor was flying to Tsukigakure with a message to another Shinwa. ----------It was a perfect day. The sun rose to meet a cloudless sky. He was three years old. He was just named heir to the Clan Head. He had no idea what an ‘heir’ was, so he wasn’t sure he wanted to be one. All he wanted right now was to get out of his itchy ceremonial clothes and go chase the butterflies. The weather was perfect for them. He liked to watch them fly. It reminded him of a dance. Some old guy that was related to him somehow was speaking. He mother was sitting complacently in very pretty ceremonial robes next to his father. His mother was very pretty. He looked a lot like his mom, young Shiroi decided. The sun makes both our skins itch.His father had had to postpone a mission to be able to attend this ceremony. The clan, since his mother had arrived, had apparently become more renown and had gained more prestige than it had previously had… “Isn’t the dance pretty, Shiroi-chan?” Izahi asked as fire danced around the hellion’s figure. The child was demon spawn. Shiroi stood rooted with fear until a sharp breeze brought the sharp scent of fire to his nose. He wanted to scream…“You okay, fruit tart?” Shiroi opened dazed red eyes to see concerned brown ones gazing back at him. “What?”“Geeze,” his mild-mannered cousin exclaimed as he felt around in his hair. “I didn’t think I hit you that hard!”“Hit me?” Shiroi was confused. Wasn’t he just with Izahi? He winced as Muka’s fingers found a sensitive spot.“Ooo~” Muka whistled. He helped Shiroi sit before parting his hair and examining the damage. “You’ve been a little off since you got back.” Shiroi didn’t want to talk about it. He didn’t want to talk about Izahi. He wanted to shudder at the thought, but suppressed it knowing his head would protest the action. “It’s nothing,” Shiroi told his cousin. Purple tinged-brown eyes gazed at Shiroi full of understanding. Shiroi didn’t, couldn’t, meet those eyes. Muka had been engaged to a cousin so distantly related that Muka had agreed to the marriage. He had really liked the girl, too. Aimuya always played with them when she had free time. Too bad she burned. Like everything did that night.The Night of Fire.The night that everything burned. Before Shiroi’s eyes, he watched, a child of four, as the floors he was running barefoot down burned and crumbled under his feet, as the ceiling fell down around his albino head. He freed Muka in the entry hall and hid behind the couch as the fireball engulfed the room… It was cold. Shiroi didn’t mind the cold, he decided. It was much better than Wind Country…Muka’s party was going to be the best party yet! He was turning 18, so it was a big deal. Everyone in the village was going to be there. He would get there eventually. He wouldn’t miss his cousin’s birthday for the world; not even this mission would stop him…It was the punch. It had to have been the punch, Shiroi thought as his body became more and more warm. It was the easiest to contaminate since it was so readily available. He found Muka and his two favourites making out in a rather interesting dance. He wanted in. Something somewhere told him he would cool down if he joined them. He hated being too warm like this…and it was happening more often than not.Shiroi lost himself to the sensation of soft, supple lips against his own as the techno beat pulsed through the house and clothing became skimpy. Someone moaned. He wasn’t sure if it was him, the girls he was sharing with Muka, or Muka himself…“Hey!” Muka suddenly piped up. “Did you see Hana-chan and Ichiyo-kun behind the Academy?”“Yeah,” Shiroi said as he finished his homework. His dad was on another mission. He and Muka were practically raising themselves. “Wanna try it?” Muka asked. “I bet it’s fun!”“Okay,” Shiroi said. And that was how the Shinwa boys developed their amazing kissing skills…Slick bodies moved in a rhythm. The scent of alcohol and something else tinged the air. Kisses were harsh and demanding; nothing like what went on between a shinobi and a kunoichi. Where there were gentle touches and many kisses, there were bites and bruises. Bruising kisses and sweet, sweet fucking. “God, Mu-mmm!” a monotone ninja cried. He attempted to. His cry was cut short my Shiroi. He wanted Ke. He didn’t want to hear him call out his cousin’s name. Muka was thrusting into Ke, doing just about everything while Shiroi worked on his body. Ke was moaning, his dick painfully erect. Shiroi, on a whim, got an evil glint in his eyes as an idea formed while he was kissing Ke. His kisses became wetter. They trailed lower and lower on his body. “What—nnnh! Oh!” Ke cried as Shiroi took his dick in his mouth. His tongue was torture to the poor monotone ninja. “He’s going to come!” Muka muttered. “I’m going to come!” Shiroi sucked harder. Muka’s cum ran down the insides of Ke’s legs, while Shiroi licked Ke’s off his lips. ‘What the hell had been in the punch?’ The thought briefly flew through Shiroi’s mind before his lips were claimed by another’s. The albino was hard. Ke lay panting on the bed. He somehow ended up laying over Ke with a dick up his ass.“Ah, shit,” he gasped as the sweet, sweet friction gave him the strangest pleasure. He shuddered when something soft and warm ran the length of his shaft. He swore again. Ke worked his hard-on. He was so warm. He was too hot. He was going to come…He was coming?“I didn’t know I was invited,” Shiroi told Kashiha as he led him through town. “Of course you are!” the pale ninja replied. “You are family, and have good blood, after all.”Family in Snow…Snow.It was too cold. He was too cold…The sun was setting…----------Toki slowly opened his eyes. It was several days after he had found Shiroi and had gotten him back from the brink of death. He was still too pale, and had somehow contracted a fever. It was the second fever he had had. The albino alternated between a body temperature that was too high and one that was too low. Shiroi was acting as if he had been poisoned.Wait……what if the blades had been poisoned?“Sorry for the intrusion!” A familiar voice called out. “Ke-kun~<3!” Toki called as he threw some clothes on and bounded down the stairs. He didn’t catch what Mendoo-kun had grumbled, but he had an idea of what he had said. It made the brunette giggle. “Good morning, Toki,” Ke greeted. “I’m feel terrible for asking this of you, especially since you’re a guest and just arrived,” Toki began. “but could you go and get me this, please?” Ke looked confused, but did as he was told. He found out why when he came back. He found the object of his fixation lying prone on the bed that he usually slept on hooked up to a bunch of machines.“Why didn’t you take him to the hospital?” Ke asked as Toki inserted the needle into Shiroi’s vein and injected a green liquid.“He would have died,” Toki said simply. “If you think that this is bad, you should have seen him when we first found him.” He turned around to face Ke, sunshine beaming from the smile on his face. “Would you like something to eat?”Ke wasn’t sure what to make of the abrupt topic change. He didn’t know what to make of the whole situation. When had Shiroi gotten hurt? How had Shiroi gotten hurt? Where were his injuries? Why was his situation so dire? A hand grabbed his arm and dragged him down the hall and to the kitchen, making his decision for him.“Now, let me tell you!” Toki started. Ke listened to Toki’s kind, and well appreciated, attempt at distracting him from his, possibly, dying love. ----------Shiroi shivered and took a deep breath before letting it hiss out between his teeth. Oh God! He hurt! He raised his finger. Ouch, but not too bad. A little more than sore. He moved his hand. Rope? He was tied up? It hurt a little, but he’d live. Then Shiroi tried to move his arm, testing the tension of the rope.----------“…and then the branch broke!” Toki exclaimed, falling into fits and giggles. Ke smiled. He took a sip of the water that Toki had provided him, laughter filling his visible eye. The laughter quickly fled when a scream permeated the air. Ke and Toki dashed up the stairs to see Shiroi panting in pain, eyes squeezed shut?“Shiroi?” Ke tentatively asked.Still panting, the albino slowly opened his red eyes.“Shiroi-kun! Don’t move around so much!” Toki exclaimed in mock anger. “You’ll anger your wounds and it’ll take you longer to heal!”“Huh?” My, my, my! Wasn’t the albino eloquent today!“Easy, Shiroi-kun,” Toki soothed. “I need to check your bandages.”Shiroi just watched the brunette with lazy hazy eyes as he pulled the covers down. Both the ninja in the bed and Ke shivered. One from the lack of heat, the other from the gruesome sight. Shiroi’s chest was heavily bandaged and pink just tinged the top of the bandages. His arms were wrapped and he had some on his face. “Try not to move your legs,” Toki explained as he started to unwrap Shiroi’s chest. “They were bruised pretty bad. Your boots were shattered.”Shiroi made a face. He grimaced when the last of the bandages came off. Ke made a face. Toki somehow managed to keep a straight face. Shiroi’s chest was a mass of stitches and oozing wounds. The albino winced when Toki prodded an especially sensitive part of his chest that was heavily sewn together. “Everything seems to be healing well,” Toki observed. “There’s no infection that I can see.”Shiroi gently coughed.A knock at the door resounded through the house. Toki gave Shiroi a knowing look. His eyes were still dazed from the pain of trying to move his arms.“Ke-kun~! Could you please go answer the door? <3?” Toki, beaming, asked the monotone ninja.“Okay,” Ke replied as he reluctantly left the room.----------“This door better be opened soon,” Muka muttered to himself, shivering, “or else I might just let myself in.” Muka shifted his weight from foot to foot. He was more a fall/spring/early summer ninja. He couldn’t tolerate extreme temperatures. The sun-kissed shinobi usually worked more southerly regions during the winter. He never worked Wind Country if he could help it. He was about to knock again when the door opened and he came face to face with Ke. His soft brown eyes were so full of pain, Muka himself could feel it. “I…” Muka didn’t know what to say. “I heard about Shiroi,:” he finally managed.“Come in,” Ke said, opening the door wider. “He’s upstairs.”“Sorry for the intrusion,” Muka said as he entered the house and took his shoes off. The other Shinwa was quiet as he followed Ke up the stairs to where Shiroi was. ----------“Shiroi-kun, you must take it easy,” Toki said as he applied ointment to the albino’s wounds. He would hiss every now and then. He seemed oblivious to the world, eyes unfocused. So it was a surprise for Toki to actually see the albino focusing on something. When Toki heard the patter of feet moving downstairs, Shiroi paused, seeming to consider lifting his head up, before tilting it slightly to listen to the movement of feet. Toki still tended the ninja as they made their way upstairs and into the room. Toki was surprised at the familiar voice cursing.“Shit, Shiroi,” Muka said in something just above a whisper. “What have you done to yourself?” Toki took note of the touch of surprise in Ke’s face.“I’m fucken hungry here!” A voice called after a door opened and slammed shut. “I’ll be right down to make food~<3! Let me finish up here, ‘kay?” Toki called. Ke made a face. Muka stood off to the side as Toki applied the mass amount of bandages required to safely cover Shiroi’s chest wounds. “Come on, Ke-kun! I need your help! <3” Toki exclaimed as he grabbed the taller ninja’s hand and dragged him out of the room. As the door was shutting, Muka made his way over to the edge of Shiroi’s bed. “How?” Was what finally came out of the green haired ninja’s mouth. “I was…” Shiroi started. He took a few breaths before continuing, “leaving a…ninjutsu. It had cast everything…in a…thick fog.”“Easy, Shiroi,” Muka said softly. “Take your time.”Shiroi looked up at his cousin, the only other family member he had really. Yes, he had family in Snow Country, but just because they shared blood did not mean that he was related to them. The clan of snow leopards that his mother had had a contract with were friendly with him, but none of them showed an interest in a contract. It was due to his mother’s blood running through his veins that they showed any interest. He was a Shinwa and they knew that. He didn’t know what he’d do if he lost his cousin and brother. He’d be alone.Completely and utterly alone.“Nana gave me…a warning. Between…between that and my…my training. Those were…the only things…that kept me alive.”Muka ruffled Shiroi’s fluffy hair. Shiroi, despite his weakened body, glared at him. The older Shinwa proceeded to pull a blood packet out of his weapons pouch and changed his transfusion. Shiroi gave him an appreciative glance. “When I read Toki-san’s note I figured you might need some,” Muka explained. “What with you and your stupid rare blood.”Shiroi gave a breathy laugh. “You…have ‘stupid rare blood’…too.”Muka gave Shiroi a loving smile that the albino, in turn, mirrored. ----------Muka regularly sent Shika back to Tsukigakure with an update on Shiroi’s condition. There was a time where he contracted a dangerously high fever and Muka wasn’t sure if he would make it. During that time, never left Shiroi’s side by day and sought comfort from Ke at night. Shiroi, amazingly enough, pulled through. Muka thought it was strange, though. Shiroi rarely got sick, and, when he did, it never lasted very long and it was never severe enough to confine him to one hundred percent bed rest. Muka replaced the cold cloth on Shiroi’s forehead one afternoon pondering this. It was so strange to him. ----------Shiroi opened his eyes. He wasn’t in the tree anymore. Nana must have found Toki and Mendoo in time. He felt stiff and sore. As the albino shinobi slowly sat up, he found that he had a breathing mask on. Gingerly reaching up, the sluggish movement removed the apparatus from his face. He took a deep breath of warm air. It was too warm.He was too warm. He looked down to discover several blankets and quilts piled on him and a heavily bandaged chest. There were bandages on his arms that suggested that at one point he had had IV’s. Examining the room, the albino found some clothes on a chair. Carefully getting out of bed, the injured man slowly made his way across the room to find Shinwa style clothing. Had he left some here last time he had visited or had someone brought them?Shiroi didn’t know. He wanted a shower though…Abruptly, his stomach growled rather loudly. Frowning, the albino put on the clothes, noting that the pants were a bit big and carefully made his way down the hall to the stairs. Feint noise led him in the general direction of where he wanted to go. He eventually found himself standing in the doorway to the kitchen. It was Muka, he noticed, that was the first to pick up on his presence, not that any of them were slow to pick on him being there. He hadn’t been out that long, had he?“I’m hungry,” Shiroi said in a deep, rough voice. He cleared his throat. “Would you like a glass of water, Shiroi-kun?” Toki cheerfully asked.“Yes, thank you,” Shiroi replied as he sat down at the table. “I’d like that very much.”Toki set the glass in front of him. “Don’t gulp it,” the brunette instructed. “You’ll only make yourself sick again.” Shiroi smiled as he sipped the glass of water that was put in front of him. It was shortly followed by a bowl of cinnamon porridge. “Thank you for the food.” Toki smiled. Shiroi ate.Everyone slowly went back to what they had been doing (eating) and talk eventually resumed. Everything was normal again. Shiroi found out later that he had been fighting for his life. He was still tired often and took naps randomly whenever he felt like it. Slowly, he gained the weight back that he lost. As soon as he was on the mend, Daimyo arrived for Muka with a mission. Shiroi bid his cousin off on his mission before he fell asleep in Ke’s lap. The winter grew colder and harsher before Shiroi held a normal sleeping schedule. It was normal for him anyway. He was awake all night, watching the cold, unforgiving stars in the sky as most everyone slept. Ke occasionally stayed up with him. Shiroi sent Yuko and Nana back to Tsukigakure with an update on his condition weekly to keep his Tsukikage updated, but he knew he probably wasn’t going to be back for a while yet. It was when he woke up after sleeping two days straight, and Toki returned from a mission, that it was decided that he’d go to the hospital with Toki. “Toki-kun!” the doctor greeted. “How are you this time?” “I’m okay,” Toki replied. “I just have some scratches. I didn’t do anything too strenuous.”“You didn’t use that jutsu, did you?” the doctor asked him. The doctor was concerned. Toki looked like shit. Toki didn’t reply. The doctor sighed. “Go to your room.”Toki smiled brilliantly. “Please see to my dear friend~<3!” he called as he headed down the hall. The doctor shook his head before turning to the other person in front of him. The first thing that the doctor noticed was that he was very pale. Sickly pale. His hair was pale and he very thin. He pulled out his stethoscope, listened to his heart, took his pulse, checked reflexes. All the while that he did this, his patient kept his eyes closed.“I need to check your eyes,” the doctor informed him. “If you somehow dim the light,” the figure replied in a deep voice, “I’ll be glad to open my eyes.”Confused, the doctor went and closed the window blinds, significantly decreasing the amount of light in the room. The doctor turned around to see bloody red eyes watching him. “Toki-san said I should come in and get professionally checked,” he informed the doctor. “I’d see my usual doctor, but she’s very busy this time of year and I don’t know if I’m able to travel to her.”“hmm,” the doctor replied. “Were you the one that Mendoo-kun came looking for a blood transfusion for?”“Did I need a blood transfusion?” the albino asked. “I didn’t think I lost that much blood. I’m surprised he managed to get any.”“Yes,” the doctor responded. “You were very fortunate. Let me see your horrendous injury that I’ve heard so much about.”Confusion briefly flitted across the albino’s face before he pulled the hem of his shirt over his head and exposed a heavily bandaged chest. Taking a kunai from his belt pouch, the ninja proceeded to cut them off.The doctor frowned. He carefully examined the stitching job. It was done very well for a home job. There was a slight discoloration, but that could just be from friction of the bandages or dry skin. Toki-kun had mentioned, though, that this individual had been very ill for a while. He took a blood sample and ran some tests, but all he managed to get was a low white blood cell count: no sign of a disease of any kind. His muscles in his chest were still on the mend. The stitches would have to remain for a few weeks yet.“You can return to Tsukigakure if you don’t exert yourself too much,” the doctor informed the albino. “Take your time about it, and you should do fine. Don’t travel by yourself though.”He thanked the doctor before showing himself out. ----------Shiroi, upon returning to Toki’s place, sent Yuko to Tsukigakure and Nana to Muka, detailing the doctor’s report. Shiroi was surprised to find Muka at Toki’s place just a few days after sending the bird out. “I was in the neighborhood,” was all he said on the matter. Shiroi only nodded and finished off his cherries before grabbing his pack and items and following Muka out the door. He left a note for Toki on the fridge. The two Shinwa traveled back to Tsukigakure, pushing only as hard as they dared. Shiroi didn’t want to rip any of his stitches or make his injuries worse. A few weeks later, they arrived.Shiroi immediately went to his doctor who immediately had a fit. She put him on antibiotics before restricting him from missions, sending a report to the Tsukikage while she was at it. “Don’t you dare even think about training until I tell you too!” the Shinwa doctor yelled at him. “All I permit you to do is meditate and practice on your jutsus. NO PHYSICAL ACTIVITIES OF ANYKIND! AM I CLEAR??” “Yes,” Shiroi replied. “Crystal.”That winter was the most boring and interesting for Shiroi yet. -------------------Here's your sequal!