Wolf My Guide

By Flutterbev

Notes: There are a lot of proverbs about wolves out there. I couldn´t decide which one to use, so I ended up incorporating fourteen in this story (I can't count - I originally posted that there were thirteen *g*). The result is a series of missing scenes, during which Ellison considers his thoughts and feelings about Sandburg. The title of this story is borrowed from a native American poem by Danceswitsacredlandscape
Acknowledgements: Thank you once again to Becky for her amazing TS transcripts; excerpts from which are scattered throughout.

One man alone is prey to the wolf - French Proverb

Doctor McCoy - the *real* Doctor McCoy - just told me that there is “no medical foundation’ for my “complaints“. What the hell is that supposed to mean? It´s all in my head? Some kind of post traumatic stress? Bullshit. I don´t know what is going on with me, but one thing I am certain of - I am not imagining it.

And what was with that other guy, the fake doctor? I wasn´t taken in for a minute by his play acting. He didn´t even smell like a medic. McCoy smelled of antiseptic, latex and other stuff I don´t want to know too much about. That unconvincing imposter smelled of dust, ink, paper and incense.

I have a pretty good idea that the “additional tests’ McCoy mentioned are of the psych variety. Maybe that´s no bad thing, considering I´m comparing how he and that phony physician smelled.

In the meantime, I guess I have nothing to lose by checking out this “Blair Sandburg’. Anything is worth a shot right now, before the men in white coats come to take me away. At the very least, I can ream the prof out for condoning false impersonation in the presence of a cop. It´d be good to have control of at least one situation this week.

I sure as hell don´t have control of anything else right now.

The fox will catch you with cunning, and the wolf with courage - Albanian Proverb

The kid´s heart is still beating double time. I can´t tell if it´s because he´s freaked out by being almost flattened by a truck, or excited because he´s got me where he wants me. Whichever it is, he´s like a bulldog on speed. I swear, if he doesn´t calm down soon, I´m gonna pop him one.

Smell the roses? Why the hell am I putting up with this? This guy is a flake.

Hang on, I know why. I´m desperate, and so far, god help me, he´s the only one who has taken me seriously. And what he did with the garbage truck? I hate to say it, but that took balls. I guess appearances can be deceiving, huh?

He´s still a dork though…

Even a sheep with the skin of a tiger is afraid of the wolf - Chinese Proverb

I was a little preoccupied at the time, with a hundred and sixty pounds of right-wing terrorist hanging off of my leg, but I heard enough to be impressed.

The conviction in Sandburg´s voice, when he threatened to shoot Kincaid´s pilot, convinced even me. I have no idea if he would have actually gone through with it, but the pilot sure as hell believed he was serious. In a matter of seconds the chopper had done a one-eighty and headed back to the PD.

Jesus, the kid´s first day on the job, and he´s handling himself like that. Who would have predicted it?

I guess I´m in for an interesting ride.

Outside a sheep, inside a wolf - Greek Proverb

He´s some actor, playing the role of mild-mannered social worker almost too well. I could hear the nervousness in his voice when the gang members challenged him on the way in to the apartment building, and they could sure as hell hear it too. It took everything I had to resist running over there to his rescue.

And now he´s in, and he wants to stay, because Miss Lacroix won‘t leave. “I can handle this,’ he said. “Trust me.’ And the little shit hung up on me.

I hate leaving Sandburg like this. It feels like I´m throwing a lamb to the slaughter. But I have a job to do, and I have to believe he can look after himself. After all, he´s surprised me before.

Just don´t expect me to like it.

Howling makes the wolf bigger than he really is - German Proverb

“You can't be me. Only I think what I think, feel what I feel.’

I found him. Thank god, he´s still alive.

“You think you know who I am? I know more about you. Poor little Homer.’

That´s it, partner. Keep it up. I can hear you. I´m coming.

“Your pet duck? Why'd you kill him? Why'd you kill your brother?’

That´s it, Chief. Keep it coming. Keep him off-balance. I´m nearly there.

“ Why'd you rub filth…’

It‘s almost over, Chief. Nearly there.

“Why did you make mommy punish you? You know, if you had just been a good little boy -- a good little Davy -- mama wouldn't have had to have scrubbed you in all those hot baths!’

Nearly there… nearly there…

“Police! Freeze!’

While keeping a tiger from the front door, the wolf comes in at the back - Chinese Proverb

So, we split up. Sandburg didn´t like it, but did what I ordered.

The next thing, I´m being shot at from a second story window. I hear a noise, like wood hitting flesh, and the firing stops. Then a guy rolls down the roof and lands at my feet.

It´s a good job Sandburg doesn´t carry a gun. He´s lethal enough without adding firepower to the mix.

It's difficult to take a wolf cub without bringing in the whole pack - Mongolian Proverb

I knew this was a bad idea. I even offered to pay for a hotel, but no, he insisted she stay with us.

I like the loft just fine as it is, all right? Um, I mean as it was…

What the hell is that smell?

What the wolf does pleases his mate - Basque Proverb

“That's just her way of showing affection,’ Sandburg once told me, when Samantha tried to blow his face off. “Like the way lions bat each other around before they mate.’

Oh good grief.

And in the continuing saga of Blair´s strange and confusing love life, he´s talking about “forty-eight hour windows’, and “expensive’ gifts.

Maybe he should just buy her some napalm? I heard that there´s a three-for-two offer on at Wal-Mart.

It's a foolish sheep that makes the wolf its confessor - Italian Proverb

He has no idea, no *fucking* idea, how I feel.

Instead, he gloats about how funny it is to describe me as "territorially threatened to the point of paranoia".

It´s as if everything we are to each other can be broken down into quantifiable bits of data. And then he behaves as though *I* am the one who is unreasonable.

Give me a break.

And then he tells me he´d rather just be friends. That he´ll destroy his notes if that´s what it takes.

I just don´t know what to believe anymore. Maybe I should listen to the “whispers of my heart’ like our resident angel says.

Only right now it hurts too much.

No matter how much you feed a wolf, he will always return to the forest - Russian Proverb

He didn´t want to leave. I know it upset him, but I can´t have him here right now. I can´t have anyone here right now; but especially him. There´s something…off about him. Some smell that raises my hackles.

I can´t have any distractions. Because something's going on out there… something very wrong. I've never felt anything like this before.

Do not measure the wolf's tail till he is dead - Serbian Proverb

This can´t be happening. I won´t let it happen.

C´mon, Chief, breathe. Don´t leave me.

Don´t leave me.

This isn´t over.

Oh god, don´t let it be over.

Make a friend of the wolf, but keep your axe ready - Russian Proverb

What the hell has Sandburg gotten himself into now? He was just one second away from having his brains splattered all over the sidewalk. I swear, he takes that crack about me being his “blessed protector’ far too seriously. If I hadn´t come along when I did… well, it doesn´t bear thinking about.

Whatever this is about, he´s letting his anger dominate his good sense yet again. He´s convinced this Ventriss kid is behind it, but subtlety is not his strong point when his emotions are involved. He´s in danger of shooting himself in the foot here, spouting off to anyone who´ll listen, despite the consequences. Whatever happened to slow and steady wins the race, huh?

Whoever feeds the wolf in the winter will be eaten by him in the spring - Greek Proverb

It´s over. Sandburg´s ride, my reputation as a cop, everything.

I didn´t want to believe that this would ever happen, but now I see what a fool I´ve been. A complete idiot, to think for even a minute that Blair would be able to keep my secret once his dissertation was done.

That roller-coaster Sandburg once talked about? Well it had to stop sometime. It had to come back down to earth. And man, it has crashed with a vengeance.

I guess all along, I was in denial, wanting to believe that Blair´s interest in me was deeper than this. That I was more than a subject to him. That we were partners. That we were friends.

I guess I was wrong.

The wolf changes only his coat -- not his character - Bulgarian Proverb

I didn´t have to be a sentinel to sense the pain and grief in Blair´s voice, when he gave up everything he was for me on national TV, because it was obvious to anyone who saw it. He ripped himself wide open.

I had to ask myself, how could I have missed this? How could I have ever believed Sandburg wouldn´t come through for me?

So now, days later, we offer him an alternative. A way to continue being my partner. A reward, of sorts, for his sacrifice. Whether he takes it or not, I´ll support his decision and I won´t doubt him again.

And I´ll hope he can forgive me for not trusting him.

I think back over our four years together, and can now see clearly for the first time, with no dissertation obscuring the truth. He is loyal, courageous, trustworthy, principled. Everything I accused him of not being.

Whether he decides to be a cop, or finds his way back to being an anthropologist, his essential character will not change.

He is my friend. He is my partner.

I am a sentinel. He is my shaman.

We just came off the track for a while. And I was right - it's been a hell of a ride.

The End

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