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I thought it might be fun to do a short story on Ray Kowalski and Fraser from Diefenbacker's point of view!
by Linda Hughes
It was early afternoon, and Diefenbacker was laying peacefully under Constable Benton Fraser's desk. The sun was shining through the small window warming the wolf's furry face. The wolf sighed happily; he liked Chicago and all of its interesting sights, sounds and smells. Diefenbacker had to admit to himself that he relished the smells the best. He licked his lips unconsciously as his thoughts turned to pizza with pineapple topping - his favourite. He knew that Fraser didn't like him eating junk food, but he was a Mountie what did he know about the finer points of burgers and pizza.
Diefenbacker rolled on his side, his legs outstretched. He grinned wolflike; he had his new American friend to thank for introducing him to the further delights of junk food. Ray Kowalski had arrived in his and Fraser's life abruptly on their return from a vacation. Man and wolf had both been confused at first, but had both rapidly warmed to this lively and energetic man with strange hair, clear blue eyes and a quick smile. He had saved Fraser that day by stepping in front of a bullet, and as far as Diefenbacker was concerned that made him part of their pack.
He was fond of the other Ray, the real Italian with the Armani suits, but this blonde haired Ray didn't mind when his white fur shed on his jeans or couch. This Ray shared his pizza, burgers and candy even though Fraser scolded him on numerous occasions. This Ray didn't mind if he slept on the bed. He liked this Ray, felt protective of him. The three of them made a good team, kept each other from loneliness, had become a family. Diefenbacker rolled back placing his head lazily on his paws, waiting for Fraser to return from the Inspector's office. He saw the boots first; brown leather, laced up neatly and so shiny that he could see his reflection in them. Diefenbacker looked up into the blue eyes of his friend as Fraser bent and ruffled his head, "Good afternoon Diefenbacker."
Diefenbacker woofed in response; he enjoyed having his head ruffled. He was extremely fond of the quiet Mountie, and vowed a long time ago that he would never leave his side despite his sometimes irritating manner. Diefenbacker knew that he had annoying habits so he supposed that made them even. He liked his name, but was always puzzled why Fraser had named him after a Canadian Prime Minister. He would never totally understand humans and their peculiar habits. At least Fraser hadn't chosen something ridiculous like Hank or Snowy. Diefenbacker tilted his head to one side enquiringly; he woofed knowing that Fraser would understand immediately what he had asked.
"No Diefenbacker. We're not going to see Ray yet. I have another ten forms to complete for the Inspector," Fraser replied sitting behind his desk and picking up the first form studying it intently. Diefenbacker laid back down disappointed groaning silently.
"I heard that my friend. Complaining won't make me finish these forms up any quicker," Fraser scolded. "And I know you only want to see Ray so you can persuade him to feed you more junk food." Diefenbacker sniffed in disgust putting his head on his paws again in defeat. He hated it when Fraser was right.
Diefenbacker closed his eyes dreaming of pizza with pineapple topping, his name boldly inscribed on the top of the filling. He began to drool licking his lips in his dozed state. He raised his head slightly as the telephone rang waking him from his edible dream.
"Canadian Consulate. Constable Benton Fraser speaking. How can I help you?" Fraser answered. "Good afternoon Lieutenant Welsh. What can I do for you?" Diefenbacker's ears pricked up at the name, and the wolf became alert as he sensed Fraser tensing. "Yes. Of course, I'll be right over," Fraser said hanging up the phone.
Diefenbacker watched as his friend marched over to the closet taking out his coat shrugging it on quickly. Fraser had paled and a worried expression had formed on his face. Diefenbacker crawled out from under the desk barking a question at him concerned.
The Mountie looked down at the wolf. "Ray's been hurt. We've got to go to the hospital," Fraser explained as he hurried out of the office placing his stetson firmly on his head. Diefenbacker didn't hesitate, and was at the Consulate front door before the Mountie.
Diefenbacker had been forced to use his most appealing expression on the taxi driver, who was reluctant to take a wolf and a Mountie to the hospital. It had worked, and now Diefenbacker sat with his nose pressed against the window watching the Chicago streets speed past as the taxi manoeuvred through the busy traffic. The wolf cast a quick look at Fraser, who sat bolt upright next to him, his jaw set in a calm expression. The expression didn't fool him; Diefenbacker knew that he was anxious about his partner. He turned his attention back to the window, and woofed softy as he saw the hospital appearing in the distance. Fraser patted his head fondly. "Nearly there. Then we can see Ray," Fraser reassured. The taxi drew to a halt, and Diefenbacker bounded out as soon as the door was opened, waiting impatiently at the door to the Emergency Unit as Fraser paid the fare.
Diefenbacker now lay quietly under a chair in the waiting room watching his Mountie friend pace up and down the floor; they had been waiting for news of their friend for over an hour. He watched the familiar brown boots pass his chair for the thirtieth time; he had never seen Fraser so agitated.
The wolf admitted to himself that he was just as worried; he couldn't lose his new friend. He would still have Fraser, but it just wouldn't be the same without Ray. The three of them shared so much; hockey games, dinners together, fishing and camping trips. Ray always included him, never left him out. The wolf enjoyed the weekends when Fraser had to go out of town, and Ray looked after him. They went for long walks by the lake, and always finished the day with a shared take-out.
He looked up as Lieutenant Welsh, who had gone to find out some news, returned to the waiting room. Fraser jumped up moving quickly towards the Lieutenant.
"How's Ray? Have you found out anything?" Fraser babbled. Seeing his partner's obvious distress, Diefenbacker slid out from under the chair and moved to his side. He gently touched the Mountie's leg to let him know he was there. Fraser looked down and smiled thinly in thanks. Diefenbacker listened quietly as the Lieutenant explained the situation.
"Calm down Constable. Ray's just fine. He's asking for you," Welsh put a hand on Fraser's shoulder.
"What happened?" Fraser asked. Diefenbacker recognised the tone of his friend's voice; he was trying to be calm but the wolf knew he was still concerned. He whined softly in comfort, which earned him a pat on the head. Welsh was guiding Fraser to a chair so he followed slowly behind vowing not to leave his friend's side.
"Ray got himself hit by a car as he was chasing a drug dealer. Knocked him out cold. He's got a concussion, cracked ribs, a broken arm and bruises just about everywhere on that skinny body of his," Welsh explained quietly. "And as usual he's screaming to get outta here."
Fraser visibly relaxed, and Diefenbacker breathed a sigh of relief at the news. "You know how Ray hates hospitals," Fraser said quietly.
"Yeh well the doctors won't release him unless he's got someone to keep an eye on him," Welsh sighed. "I didn't think you would mind, and he listens to you."
"Of course, Diefenbacker and I will look after him," Fraser stood up. "Can we see him now?" Diefenbacker smiled to himself; he was glad Fraser had included him in the care of their American friend.
"Yeh sure. This way Constable," Welsh led the way towards some double doors. Diefenbacker hesitated a moment, not knowing if a wolf would be allowed into the area. His fears were allayed as Fraser motioned for him to follow. He trotted behind the two men as they made their way towards a curtained area. Welsh stopped. "You go in. I have to get back to the precinct," he said patting the Mountie's arm. "Take good care of him."
"Yes sir. We will. Don't worry," Fraser replied.
"I know you will Constable," the Lieutenant ruffled Diefenbacker's head as he turned to leave. Diefenbacker woofed silently. "And you," Welsh laughed as he walked back along the corridor.
Diefenbacker followed Fraser into the cubicle. Detective Stanley Raymond Kowalski was lying on the bed, his eyes closed. His right arm was encased in a plaster cast resting lightly on his chest. His pale skin was mottled with blackbluish bruises, and his face displayed a variety of cuts and abrasions.
Diefenbacker was relieved to see his friend and barked happily. Ray opened his eyes slowly and grinned weakly. "Hiya Dief. Frase. Sorta had a bit of an accident."
"So I can see Ray," Fraser teased. His expression turned serious. "Diefenbacker and I have been very worried about you."
"Sorry," Ray reached down and ruffled Diefenbacker's fur wincing in pain at the movement. "Didn't mean ta. This truck just sorta ran over me." Diefenbacker looked at Fraser and woofed questioningly.
"Yes. Diefenbacker," Fraser answered.
Ray looked puzzled. "What did he say? Ya know I'm not good at speaking wolf."
Fraser looked from Diefenbacker to his other friend. "He asked if we were taking you home," Fraser replied.
"And are ya?" Ray interrupted. Diefenbacker noticed that his voice sounded hopeful. He couldn't understand why Ray didn't like hospitals; the nurses were always so kind to him, feeding him doughnuts and petting him. He had decided long ago that he liked hospitals.
"Yes Ray. We are," Fraser smiled. "I'll just get instructions from the doctor, and I will be right back." Fraser turned and disappeared out of the cubicle.
Diefenbacker looked up at his American friend; he looked tired. His usually bright blue eyes looked dull with pain. He knew what painkillers were, and hoped that Ray had been given some. He hated to see Ray hurting and in pain.
He murmured quietly carefully putting his front paws up on the bed and nudging his friend's good arm. Woofing again, he hoped Ray knew what he was trying to say.
"Yeh. Don't worry Dief. I'm good,"Ray fondled his nose affectionately. Pleased that Ray had understood him, Diefenbacker licked his hand; Ray was getting the hang of wolf despite his protests to the contrary. "Hey if we're really good, maybe we can persuade Frase to get us pizza. Whaddya think?" Diefenbacker woofed in agreement. "Now we gotta be good. OK?" Diefenbacker woofed again; shared pizza with his favourite American sounded like heaven to him. Ray closed his eyes again; Diefenbacker stayed with his paws on the bed, his nose touching his friend comforting.
Fraser had eventually persuaded the doctors to release the blonde detective into his care. Diefenbacker had quietly watched as Fraser had helped Ray into a borrowed oversized sweatshirt; he thought it was a shame that humans didn't have fur. The three friends had then taken a taxi to Ray's apartment. Not wanting to trip up either of his friends, Diefenbacker had slowly followed behind as Fraser had helped Ray up the stairs and slowly along the corridor.
Diefenbacker now sat quietly by the couch watching his friend. Fraser had fussed fetching pillows and a blanket from the bedroom when Ray had stubbornly refused to go to bed. The Mountie had disappeared into the small kitchen to make some tea. Diefenbacker nudged his friend trying to remind him of their bargain. Ray looked confused and Diefenbacker licked his lips. The thin detective smiled and patted his nose.
"Hey Frase. Can ya order me some pizza? I'm kinda hungry," he shouted.
Fraser turned from his task of boiling a kettle and generally tidying up the small messy kitchen. "Are you sure Ray? You ought to get some rest," Fraser asked doubtfully.
Diefenbacker adopted his best hopeful expression and aimed it at the blonde detective. Ray grinned, "Yeh, I'm sure. Getting knocked over by a truck sorta gives a guy an appetite."
"Everything seems to give you an appetite my friend," Fraser teased as picked up the telephone and speed dialled Ray's favourite pizza parlour.
Fraser began to place the usual order, and Ray looked back to Diefenbacker giving him the thumbs up signal. Diefenbacker barked happily; moving forward he licked Ray's face in thanks.
"OK. OK. I love ya too," Ray pushed the happy wolf away from him. "Now don't tell Frase, will ya?" he whispered conspiratorially patting an empty space at the back of the couch. Diefenbacker prided himself on never missing an opportunity so he accepted the invitation carefully jumping up on the couch snuggling down with his friend, his head resting lightly on Ray's chest. Ray smiled and closed his eyes slowly, his good hand lightly resting across Diefenbacker's head.
Diefenbacker studied his friend carefully. All those years ago, he knew he had made the right decision to stay with Fraser. The Mountie's friendship meant a lot to him, made him the wolf he was today. Now he had another friend to protect and love. He made the second vow of his lifetime; he would do all in his power to safeguard Stanley Raymond Kowalski from danger and hurt. He watched his friend sleep, his breathing deep and even. Satisfied that his pack mate was comfortable, Diefenbacker closed his own eyes and drifted into a peaceful sleep.
Twenty minutes later, Fraser answered the door to the pizza delivery. He carefully carried the box towards the living room. Stopping in his tracks, he couldn't hide the smile on his face. His two best friends were fast asleep, curled up with one another on the couch.
"Oh dear. I suppose the pizza will keep," he grinned to himself and quietly returned to the kitchen and a cup of bark tea.