The Red Shadow Hunt(A Pokemon Paul Love Story Part 13)

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It was early the next morning I rose out of bed quietly. I grabbed a comb, a few knives, and my boots before seeking out the door and down the hall. Candice was always an early riser, and it was her I needed to talk to.

I knocked softly on the door and waited for her to open it. She looked slightly surprised to see me up this early and still around the place.

“Hey, what can I do for you?” She asked and opened the door all the way so I could come in.

“Animal and I are heading down to town today.” I told her, “I need a disguise.”

She smiled brightly, “You came to the right place!” She told me.

She opened both of her closets and I sat on her bed brushing my hair.

“What were you thinking?” She asked me.

“Something simple.” I told her, “Covers most of my face, a lot of women from any town would wear it aswell.”

She nodded and turned around digging through everything before she pulled out something long and black, she tossed it to me before pulling two more pieces of cloth out.

“That’s the dress.” She said, “It’s mostly figureless, so you can conceal those weapons. This is the head dress.” She held out the two pieces, “This one goes on your head like a hood, and this one goes across your face, covering most of it.”

“It’s perfect.” I told her, “Thank you.”

“It’s my home too, Jowey.” Candice told me softly, “I don’t want it wrecked because of the King and his guards trying to find you or anyone else. If this helps I do it willingly.”

I stood up and walked over to her, I wrapped an arm around her shoulder and pulled her in for a side hug.

“I know.” I told her, “I know.”

“Wow, you actually look like a girl.” Animal teased when I came down.

I shot him a glare and a playful smirk, “Too bad you don’t get a lot.”

‘OOh’s were heard throughout the room.

He frowned deeply and pulled the bag Martain had just finished packing off the table.

“We takin’ horses?” He asked as I pulled the mask over my nose.

“No.” I said, “It’d take too long.”

“And you sure no one is gonna recognize you?” He asked.

I nodded, “All I have to do is keep my head down and act meek. They won’t suspect a thing.”

He nodded, “We’ll see you later.” Animal said and headed to the door.

“Bye guys.” I said and quickly followed.

“What about, Paul?” Alec asked quickly.

“Say bye to him for me.” I said and ran to catch up with Animal.

Paul’s pov.

I woke up and looked around. Jowey wasn’t there.

I sighed and sat up. I really need to start waking up earlier. Most of the time she’s already left by then. But even the time I get up is still early. Guess it’s not compared to her.

I quickly tied up my boots and threw on a shirt before grabbing my sword and heading down stairs.

When I got there the door had just shut and I made my way to the bar.

“Morning guys.” I said and sat down.

“How come you always sleep in?” Zuren asked.

I looked at him and said, “Usually the time I get up anyways.”

“Late, you ask me.” He said.

“And how many are still asleep?” I challenged.

“Most of the girls, and a few of the guys.” He said, “Course that’s just ’cause of what usually goes on at night with them.”

I shrugged and accepted the coffee Martain placed in front of me.

“So where’s Jowey? She leave yet?” I asked.

Martain nodded, “She and Animal just left. I don’t think anyone would recognize her in what she was wearin’ either.”

I nodded, I was going to be a long day or two without her.

Jowey’s pov.

We hurried down the mountain, and did it in record time too.

“I won.” Animal hissed as me when we reached the bottom.

“Don’t care.” I told him and continued on.

“Aren’t you supposed to be acting like a woman?” He asked me.

I nodded, “When we come across people.” I told him.

He sighed but said nothing about it.

We continued on until we came to edge of the town. There were a few farmers in the fields, we were stopped by an elderly one.

“I wouldn’t go that way.” He warned us, “The king is taking any and all able young men to become his soldiers.”

“For what purpose?” Animal asked politely.

“Son, there are changes in crown going on in a few of our neighbouring countries. The king feels as though it’s time to attack them as the new king settles and expand his kingdom. He needs every man he can get. He sent an entire battalion up into the mountains not too long ago to look for a traitor, not a single one came back. They’re presumed dead.”

Animal nodded, “My sister and I where up in tavern about the same time, resting. They were all killed.”

The old man shook his head, “He keeps sending men to die uselessly. It breaks my heart.”

“Where one of those men your son?” I had cut in to ask.

He nodded slowly, “His name was Tracey. He was a good boy, very gentle, wouldn’t hurt a fly. And yet he was recruited.”

“I’m sorry.” Animal told him, “My sister just asks things sometimes without thinking.”

The old man shook his head, “It’s alright. I just pray his soul is at peace.”

“We thank you for the warning and your time, sir.” Animal said and we both bowed. Then turned and left the man in the fields.

“What do you wanna do?” Animal asked me when we were far enough from anyone’s ear shot.

“Go around the back.” I told him, “I’ll scale the wall, and see what I can see from the castle.”

“Don’t get caught.” He told me.

“Have I been so far?” I asked.

He didn’t say anything after that as we made our way to the rear of the city. In the shade of the high walls, we hid in the shadows.

I shed the dress and head-piece and left it on the ground next to Animal.

“I’ll wait here.” He told me.

I nodded and spit on my hands to gain the grip I knew I needed. There were small spaces between the tall staked rocks, at times it was harder, but I had made my way up.

I looked left and right over the stone path where guards walked, and waited until the coast was clear. When it was I ran across the wide path and made the five foot jump from the wall of the city to the tower of the castle.

I had timed it right because there was the shift change happening at the moment.

I slowly crawled my way up the steep wall until I came to a specific window. It was the Window to the Princesses room. I was maneuvered in such a way that I could see into a part of the room, but they couldn’t see me.

“You really are like your daddy.” I heard the princess giggle. She walked into my view holding something to her chest covered in blankets, “You must be hungry.” She said and began to undo the buttons of her dress. She pulled her breast out of her undergarment and the child began to suck.

I was disgusted with myself. I had seen the child had purple hair. Hair just like paul’s. He had given her a child, and then he took me.

I was about to move on, I didn’t like this sight anymore, when the door to the room opened without a knock or permission to enter.

Into my sight strolled Cyrus, he stood in front of his daughter holding a large amount of authority over her.

“Has he come?” She asked respectfully.

“No.” Cyrus said flatly, “Our first attempt to bring him back had ended in failure.”

The princess looked down almost ashamed.

“It’s alright.” He told her, I could have sworn he was smiling when he did, “I’ve already made other arrangements about bringing him back. He should be here soon.”

Her eyes lit up and mine widened.

I scurried down the wall, leapt across the pathway, and jumped down to the ground, landing with a muffled thud.

“We have to get back up to the tavern, now.” I told Animal with slightly heavier breath than normal.

He didn’t question anything, we merely went as fast as we could back to the mountain base, and climbed about as fast as our limbs would let us.

The Red Shadow Hunt(A Pokemon Paul Love Story Part 12)

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I stirred awake and blinked a few times to get the spots away from my eyes, I attempted to sit up, but a headache forced me back down. I glanced around the room. It was as I left it, except for Paul laying next to me shirtless he was on his side and had his head supported by his left hand. He was smiling at me tiredly.

“Please tell me we didn’t do anything last night.” I begged.

“Why?” He teased, “You don’t want me in you drunk?”

He nuzzled his face into my neck.

“I wanna remember every time.” I told him and ran a hand through his hair.

“We didn’t.” He said resuming his original position, “You were a little drunker then you thought, and after the guys went down to bed you were giggling like crazy, pulled your boots and shirt off, then complained about the wrappings as you fumbled with the knot.”

“Must have been funny.” I grinned and successfully sat up that time. The blankets fell from my chest revealing it was bare.

I shoved the rest of them off and stood up only holding onto the wall momentarily for support.

“You’re still gonna drink?” Paul asked and stood up with me as I picked up another bottle on the floor. This one still had ale in it.

“Yeah.” I said and took a swig, “I gotta be drunk to kill ’em.”

He sighed and grabbed his shirt, “You never cease to amaze me sometimes Jay.”

I shrugged and downed the rest of the bottle before grabbing the wrapings and wrapping my torso back up.

“So who is this guy you need to kill anyways?” Paul asked leaning against the wall and eying me as I pulled my shirt on.

“Can’t tell ya’.” I said and sat down to pull my boots on.

“Why not?” He asked, “If he makes a run for it I can stop him before he leaves.”

“Wont leave.” I told him as I finished tying them up, “No one would expect it to be them, they won’t run. They’ll think I think it’s someone completely different.”

“Who is it?” Paul asked again.

I stood up and turned around to face him, “You’ll have to wait and see.”

He sighed frustrated as I picked up a few knifes and put them in their holsters. I also picked up one last bottle that was mostly full. I assumed it was the one I gave to Reggie, he was never big one ale.

I sipped on it was we walked down to the lobby. When we got there everything stopped. I looked around with the bottle at my lips.

“Everyone here?” I asked Martain.

“Some of the girls are still upstairs.” He replied.

“Candice.” I spoke softly, “Run up stairs and get the girls that are still sleeping if you don’t mind.”

She nodded and hurried up the steps.

I took another swig and pulled out my finest knife.

“The traitor is one in this room.” I told them, “I’ll give you an honourable death, as honourable as one can give to a traitor anyway.”

The girls hurried back down stairs. I quickly chugged the rest of the bottle and set it down on the counter.

Everyone was shifting wondering who the rat was.

“Hey, Jessie.” I called.

The crimson haired woman turned to look at me, looked for only a moment before receiving the promised dagger in her stomach. I walked up to her pulling out one that was serrated. I grabbed the front of her dress and made her look at me.

“You should have known your fate when you crossed the Red Shadow.” I whispered.

And with that I placed the knife at her throat and slit it. Pain was the most evident thing there was on her face.

I allowed her lifeless body to fall to the ground before I pulled the knife out of her abdomen.

“Take this as a warning.” I said as I marched up to the bar and started wiping the blood from the blades, “I wont hesitate to kill anyone who ever crossed me. Be you man or woman. I have no bias. Girls, go up to her room and take what you like of her belongings, find anything that I might like to see, letters, a journal, old books, what have you, bring them to me. Animal, I want you to take care of her body.”

“Will do.” Animal grinned. He got the name as his battle style was as savage as one. I’m sure everyone assumed he’d have been the one to sell me out. We sparred regularly, and there was hardly a day that went by that he threatened to kill me. Everyone knew he never could. But he and I were on good terms, we just had one that revolved around fighting.

The girls did as they were told, eager to go through her closet. Jessie always got first dibs of the cloths that everyone brought home saying she was the oldest so she had to be the first. Her cloths closets were overflowing more than my weapon one.

I sat down at the bar and rubbed my head with my hands.

“Can’t believe you had to kill her?” Reggie asked sitting next to me.

I shook my head, “My head’s killing me.” I told him, “Martain, can you make a Charlie oyster or whatever they’re called to get rid of hang overs please?”

He said nothing but just set a clear glass in front of me. I looked at it to find an egg with god knows what else.

I smiled at him, plugged my nose, and downed it.

“Bet you never want to drink again.” Alec said and sat on the other side of me.

I shook my head, “Just not for a little while.”

“I’ll give her ’till dinner, what do you guys say?” Martain chimed.

I stuck my tongue out at him and he just chuckled.

“How’s the kid doin’?” I asked.

“He’s resting,” He said, “You can go see him when he’s awake.”

I nodded and turned my attention to Maylen when she reached the bottom steps. She walked over shyly with something in her arms, she handed it to me.

“We think there might be more.” She said.

In my hands was a black leather bound book, pages old and worn. The cover was blank.

I went with her back upstairs to Jessie’s room. She had her’s on the second floor.

The girls were still going through her closet.

“Jowey would look so good in this.” Misty said holding up something that was red and shimmered.

“Okay, but you try to wrestle with her to get her to wear it.” Zoe laughed.

“I’m sure I could get Paul to convince her to put it on.”

“I think not.” I cut in.

Everyone froze and looked over.

“You found this in here.” I stated more than asked as I held up the book, “Do any of you have any kind of idea of what this is?”

They all shook their heads.

“Birth records.” I told them and threw it down on her bed, “That means Jessie was used to hide something from someone. From now on nothing leaves this room that I don’t okay first.”

“But you said,” May tried to say.

“And now I’m saying this.” I told her, “I don’t know what Jessie had in here, and as much I really don’t want to know, there might be something else in here that could tell us why she sold me out and who she’s working for.”

“Think so?” Maylen asked.

I nodded, “The cloths you can still have, but I want to go through everything first. Is that fair? Speak now or forever bite your tongue.”

“It’s fair.” Zoe said, “But I just wanna ask one thing.”

I nodded and crossed my arms.

“What do you think she was trying to hide?” She asked.

I paused a moment thinking it over before I sighed, “I have the faintest of feelings she was working for Cyrus.”

Back down the mountains in the castle. Cries were coming from the princess’ chambers.And not long after, new cries, that of a new born baby could be heard echoing through out the stone walls.

One of the doctors cleaned off the child before handing it back to its mother.

Dawn held her new son to her chest lovingly. She sniffled wishing Paul could have been there to see his son.

“You did well, my princess.” King Cyrus said stroking her hair.

“I wish he were here.” She whispered.

“I know.” He said and kissed the top of her head, “I’ll get him here, don’t worry.”

“Thank you father.” She said trying not to cry.

I sat at a table in the lobby late that night with the five of them.

“What would you guys make of this?” I asked as we looked over what we found. In total there was one birth record book, seven or eight books recording the reign of king Valkner, more than a dozen letters addressed to Jessie, and one medallion that didn’t belong.

“Cyrus is defiantly hiding something from everyone.” Paul growled, “And I served that bastard.”

I placed my hand on top of his fist gently to calm him down, it worked but not very well.

Alec lit another candle for more light.

“I think the best way to find out exactly what’s going on is to check the birth records.” Reggie said and reached for them.

“Why the birth records first?” Zuren asked.

Reggie stopped and looked at him, “I remember hearing one of the guards in the castle speaking to another about the day the king was over thrown, something about a birth in the middle of it. Regardless of what was going on at that time a doctor would have recorded the birth of any child born when he delivered it.”

“And you think that’s what started all of it?” Alec asked.

He shook his head, “But I think it might help to find out why Jessie was hiding all of this and what role she played.”

“You’re the best reader.” I told him.

Reggie picked up the book and flipped through the pages, he stopped about half way through.

“What is it?” I asked him.

“King Valkner had a daughter.” He said, we all stared at him, “She was born just before Cyrus went into overthrow him. Says here, she was seven pounds two ounces. Black hair, eye colour- it’s smudged.”

“It’s a start.” I said, “Valkner had a daughter, she’d have been the princess of the country. But that leads to another question, did Cyrus over throw the king just for power or was there an actual reason behind it?”

“If I remember right,” Reggie said, “Baba always said that king Valkner was a good king and just. There was little to no poverty when he rained, the county was completely happy, even bandits would come into his kingdom and be redeemed for their sins and they got to live in happiness and peace.”

“I’ll assume those books will go into depth about what he did.” I said.

“I also remember something he told us.” Alec said, “Baba told us about all those precious jewels he had. And about whoever had them would live in eternal happiness and prosper. But he also said that only one true to the royal blood could touch them, and the rest would die a slow and painful death.”

“I remember a story I head while in a tavern not too far from the castle.” I said, “There once was an old king with not a child nor wife to give one. He brought in woman after woman to try their luck, not one had given him even a daughter, so he killed every last one. One after another women everywhere started to become scares on the streets in fear of being his next victim. One day in church the king cursed the heavens for not giving him even a wretched daughter to carry on his blood. A voice from heaven replied ‘Thou art but being punished for thou’s sins, thou hadn’t been the king thy people needed. thou shalt now parish a untimly death.’ and at the snap of fingers the king fell in unbearable pain. A kind peasant boy brought him back to his hut to care for him. The king had actually recovered, and upon opening his eyes he found the boy in an empty hut, he was close to starving too. He asked him where his parents were. And he replied that his mother was sent to the king to try to give him a son, and his father was killed refusing to hand her over to the king. His heart was broken hearing that. He then thought of all that he’d wronged. He went around the village and collected those orphans and brought them to the castle. He cared for and taught them. One day he fell ill again from another disease. But this time he died with all those he’d cared for around him. Before he had died he gave that kingdom over to the boy who had saved him that day. And from the heavens another voice came saying he had atoned for his sins. and his body and soul were brought up to heaven. in his place on the bed where he lied there were millions of jewels and much gold. The children where told to protect it as it would give them the strength to run the country for as long as their blood existed. And with the help of each of them the kingdom prospered. Same time that guy was really drunk.”

Paul shook his head, “I remember reading something similar to that in the library.”

“The king was good, how’s the economical standing now?” I asked.

“It’s quite poor.” Reggie said, “Heavy taxes, lots of sickness, little food. The castle couldn’t be in better condition, but the villagers.”

“So this was for power and money.” I said, “Wonder what he’s gonna do when he realizes he can’t have that wealth.”

“What do you want to do?” Zuren asked.

I shrugged, “I wanna see how things play out for a little longer.” I told them, “I was gonna go down to the village in the morning, see what I can find out.”

“You alone?” Paul asked, “After you were sold out?”

I nodded, “Trust me,” I told him, “Me and the girls are about the same size, and I have more than a few tricks up my sleeve.”

“Jowey.” Paul warned.

I shook my head, “I go down alone, if I think I need a little back up, Animal, Bull, or Thunder would be the best choices.”

“You’d take animal with you?” Alec asked.

I nodded, “We may not be as close as the six of us, but I can rely on him and he can keep up easily. Trust me.”

“All we ever seem to be doing.” Martain said, “But I do want someone to go with you. Take no chances.”

I nodded, “We should all get some shut eye. It’s been a long day.”

I blew out the candles and went to bed.

Family Feud(One Piece Part 13)

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We entered the house, took off our shoes, and Daddan took our coats. We headed straight for the meeting room, where everyone was waiting for us.

“How did it go?” Lucky asked after I took my seat.

“Better than I had thought.” I told them, “What’s the shedual for the week?” Today was Sunday, and every Sunday there was a lot that had to be done, one of the main things was find out what I was going to be doing all week.

“Tomorrow there’s the Mushi meeting with the Saboy mayor at nine, Doflamingo agreed to talk to you about the mines and grenades at ten, and then you have lunch at eleven with Woopslap of the Windmill town. From one- three you’ll be at a rally for the specialty unit, also getting that new person in as a bug. Then your uncle wished for dinner with you at six.” Hawkins said.

I whistled, “Please tell me this is all written down.”

“In your planner.” He told me, “Tuesday you have the monthly Boss meeting at the temple. Wendsay is the Trades, business, and partners meeting, that will go all day.”

“If all goes well, we’ll have the paperwork for the road ready by Thursday.” Lucky told me, “And then Friday, Sir Foxey had requested a meeting with you.”

“That it for Friday?” I asked.

“All that has come up so far.” Hawkins told me.

I nodded, “Law, I got a job for you.”

He looked at me.

“Make arrangements for Monkey D. Luffy, Portgas D. Ace, and Sabo to move in to the house.” I told him.

“Ceerie, you can’t do that.” Benn told me, “They’ll be in danger if you bring them in.”

“How?” I asked him like a small child, “They aren’t going to be involved with any of this any more than they’ve involved themselves as it is. I need them here, Benn.”

“Why do you need them here?” He snapped.

“To keep me feeling things.” I told him, he instantly backed away, “I can’t stay in this giant place all alone anymore, I’ll go crazy. And they’ll make these empty halls, not so empty anymore.”

“I’ll make the arrangements.” Law told me, “I just hope you know what you’re doing.”

“Have I given you any reason to doubt me yet?” I counted.

The next day I walking through the foray to get to the meeting room. It was eight thirty and I had about a half hour before the mushi conference.

I paused and looked at the door, hardly a moment later it burst open and Ace, Sabo, and Luffy threw themselves at me head first.

Normally I would have evaded it easily. But I allowed them to tackle me to the ground in a giant dog pile/bear hug manner.

“How ya’ been?” Luffy grinned.

I smiled at him as Sabo helped me up and Ace slapped my shoulder congratulating me on becoming Boss, and doing a great job so far.

“Why did you want us to come live with you?” Sabo asked cutting through the laughter, hugs, and smiles.

I looked at the three of them, them around at the house.

“147.” I said.

“147?” Luffy asked.

“147 rooms.” I told them, “Not including bathrooms, walk in closets, and the kitchen.”

They stared at me and I smiled gently.

“I’d always run around and count the rooms when I was little, my father was out, and I wasn’t allowed out to play.” I told them, “147 rooms. The place seemed so much smaller when he was alive. And now that he’s gone all this space seems suffocating.”

“So you want us here for company?” Ace said.

I nodded, “I also realized that I had been neglecting you guys the past couple years. And I figured we’re still family, we can at least live as so.”

They nodded and I got four hugs. One from each of them and a group hug.

I held them close each time, and the only thing that interrupted us was Yassopp coming out of the meeting room.

“Ceerie.” He said, we turned and saw him standing there.

“It’s eight fifty.”

I nodded, “Makino!” I called.

She came in a moment.

“Hai, Ceerie-sama?” She asked.

“Would you please show them to their rooms and make them feel at home?” I asked her, she nodded, I turned back to them, “I have appointments for the rest of today. Tomorrow and the next day I’ll have meetings, but I can have breakfast with you guys. I’ll try to find you when I have breaks in between.”

“No sweat.” Ace told me.

“Take care in your appointments.” Sabo told me.

“Here if you need me.” Luffy grinned.

I nodded, “Arigoto.” I said and bowed.

They waved as I went to the meeting room and closed the door behind me.

“I hope you know what you’re doing.” Benn warned as I took my seat.

I smiled at him, “I am. Don’t worry.”

“That’s when.”

But Benn was cut short by the Mushi going off.

“Moshi Moshi.” I said as I answered.

“Ceerie-sama?” The voice on the other end questioned.

“Speaking.” I said and placed the receiver in the holder.

“You wished to speak with me about a trade?” He asked.

“I did.” I told him.

“I’m listening.” He told me.

“Spring’s coming.” I told him, “Our fish market’s are about to flourish.”

“You want to know if we’re interested in your fish?” he asked slightly angry.

“Yes, actually.” I told him, “We had just realized what little trade we had together. I wanted to be the first to make the effort bridge with you.”

“What kind of joke is this?!” He yelled, “You’re offering me a fish trade when I know for a fact that you offer wine, oil, and silk!”

“You’ll have to forgive me.” I told him, “I’m aware of the large amounts of wine, oil, and cloth you get from Water 7, NewKomer, and Drum island. But I found almost no fish in your trades.”

“Y-you did all that research on us?” He asked taken back.

“Yes.” I told him raising an eye brow, “You must do your homework before making an offer in trade.”

“You were the fist to do that.” He told me.

“That’s surprising.” I said, “I would assume with all the tourist you get from the park and current auctions that everyone would like to trade with you and thus be forced to know what you need and don’t.”

“You would think.” He told me, “But not really.”

“How about this.” I offered, “I offer you fish, oils of your choice, and fine silk, and you trade it with that parchment that you’re famous for?”

“It would be hard to trade all that with just parchment.” he told me.

“Parchment and credit then?” I asked him, “I’m not going to take advantage of you or your current position either, but I need good parchment and yours is the best.”

“How do you know that?” He asked me.

I smiled, “As a little girl I was fascinated with origami. I used all kinds of paper for it, but I loved parchment the most. And out of all the parchment, I liked the kind from Saboy the most.”

“Just parchment?” He asked me.

“Yes.” I told him, “I said I need god parchment.”

“I can do that.” He said.

For the next ten or so minutes we negotiated on how much parchment for what oil, wine, and fish, what fish he wanted and how much of everything in what kind.

“Fair trade.” I told him, “I’ll give you the choice, would you like it all monthly?”

“That would be best.” He told me, “And I’ll send the parchment over on rush.”

“Arigoto.” I told him, “Yours will be in, in a day or two.”

“It was a pleasure doing business with you, Ceerie-sama.” He told me.

“As you.” I said.

“If you don’t mind me saying, I’m glad it was you who took over after your late father.” He said.

“Arigoto.” I said and hung up.

“What are you planning to do with the parchment?” Law hissed.

I looked at him cooly.

“Alabasta.” I told him, “They use silk as paper to write on. We trade parchment for silk, they can make more and we gain a little more profit.”

They stared at me.

“You really planned all that out?” Killer asked finally.

I nodded, “I realized that with selling the silk, importing it, and sending the money back over, we’re actually losing 12 belli for every yard we sell. We make the trade with alabasta, as they were going to use the money made for soil and paper, we cut their yearly cost by twenty percent, and gain another fifteen for giving them the paper.”

“Completely thought out.” Benn said breaking the silence.

I smirked at him and glanced at my watch, it was almost ten.

“Hey, Hawkins.” I said.

“Hai.” He responded.

“Are you sure your cards were right?” I asked him.

“In what why?” He asked me.

“You said I would find love in that giant mess. Are you sure it was right?” I asked again.

“They haven’t been wrong yet.” He told me, “I could try again if you’d like.”

I nodded, “Please. Second I find love, I can get married and these stupid proposals will stop coming.”

The mushi began to ring again, I sighed before picking up the receiver.

“Moshi moshi.” I said.

“Moshi moshi Ceerie-sama.” Doflamingo said from the other side, “Have you considered my proposal?”

“I’m still considering.” I told him, “Right now I would like to know about the lateness of land mines and grenades that you promised me.”

“There was a back up on the order I placed for certain parts.” He told me, “They managed to put a rush on bullets, guns, and flares. But gun powder is still so low right now.”

I paused a moment watching the smile on the mushi grow bigger.

“Who else have you been selling to?” I asked him.

The mushi’s smile quickly turned into a frown.

“It’s strictly business.” He told me, “Not pleasure.” The mushi’s smile grew again.

“Doflamingo-san.” I started, “I understand business. But what I don’t understand is a smart business man like yourself violating our contract.”

The mushi’s smile turned to a frown once more, “The contract was with Shanks Le Roux.” He told me, “Not you.”

“Not according to the copy I have in front of me.” I told him, “So long as there is a living head our contact is air tight.”

“He died.” He told me, “You know that you were there.”

“True.” I said opening a folder containing various papers, “But he made me head before he died. Even Black beard and Big Mama will tell you that, the old straw hat was on my head when he died. I was the head of the Red family before he died, you’re the one over stepping this contract.”

“So young and yet so smart.” He told me, “This s why I want you to be my bride.”

“I’m still considering.” I told him, “But for right now I have things I need to straighten up first.”

“Alright.” He told me, “I send the next two loads to the regular rondevu point tomorrow. But I want an answer soon.”

“Arigoto.” I told him, “And thank you for being honest.”

He didn’t say anything as he hung up. I merely smirked and put the receiver back on the Mushi. I looked through a few of the paper’s before me.

“And I didn’t even have to go into the dirt.” I said to myself, “Too bad.”

I heard the last of the of the cards be placed down as I closed the folder.

“What do they say?” I asked passing the folder back to Benn wh put it back into the filing cabinet.

“True love is to come.” He told me, “But I can’t tell you from which direction.”

“Just please tell me it’s not Urouge or Doflamingo.” I begged, “That’s all I want.”

“That much I can tell you.” He told me and started flipping more cards, “All they say is that love is closer than expected, so I doubt that it would be anyone who’s sent a proposal.”

“Don’t forget the conference Wednesday.” Law said, “It could mean that they’re coming closer.”

I scoffed and threw a paper in front of him. He picked it up and looked on the front page, there was a large picture of Doflamingo on it.

“I will never find anything like that attractive.” I told him, “All his whores might not have taste or standards, but I do.”

They all chuckled at that. I glanced at my watch and sighed.

“Lunch time.” I said and rose.

“You don’t have any concernes?” I asked the mayor as we sat down for dinner.

He shook his head, “This is more a thank you than anything.” He said, “Thanks to you buying that old oil factory our poverty has gone down, economy has gone up, our populate has grown a little more, and our trade is wonderful. And with the wine factory it’s even better.”

I smiled, “I wish I could say that was my goal all along, but it wasn’t.”

He smiled at me, “Be it or not, I still have to thank you properly, if not for you I don’t want to think about what might have happened here.”

“Thank you.” I said.

—-

Cheers were heard from the men before me as I had just finished my speech. I took a deep breath and walked down off the stage to where Killer and Lucky stood with another person.

“Ceerie-san, this is Heat.” Killer introduced us.

“I thought he was a permanent part of the Sweet family?” I asked.

“He was-er-is.” Lucky said, “Your late father had us place inside spies when you were born in every family, just in case.”

“Heat here happens to be one of the spies since he was a child.” Killer added.

I looked him up and down. Tall, light blue hair, muscular, tattoos that look like stitches all over his body, which was well built.

“You were part of Kidd’s group.” I called him out on it.

“I was sent to the sweet family as a spy when I was small.” He told me, “Over the course of the years, we had become friends. Apparently I wasn’t annoying, and there weren’t too many our age over there.”

I nodded, “Have you been briefed?” I asked.

He nodded.

“Do whatever necessary to find and kill him.” I told him.

“Yes, ma’am.” He said.

I nodded and turned around heading back to the mansion.

“Ceerie-san!” I paused and waited for Killer to catch up with me.

“Nani?” I asked him pressing on.

“You aren’t going to offer him anything more, like a good luck?”

“What may I offer him?” I asked, “I hadn’t known about the spies until now. The only reason why I knew he existed was because he hung around Kidd, who hated me.”

“I hung around Kidd too ya’ know.” He muttered.

I stopped in my tracks and looked at him. I couldn’t see his face, but I knew for a fact he was sweating.

“Then maybe you could elaborate as to why he hated me so much.” I told him, “I know for a fact it’s more than just families.”

“That’s the one thing about Kidd I’ll never know.” He told me, “You’re just his type, which I don’t get.”

“Maybe that’s it.” I muttered to myself stalking towards home again, “He actually likes me, and won’t admit it because I’m in an enemy family.”

“I doubt that’s it.” He assured.

I stopped again and looked over at him.

“May I ask you a serious question?”

He nodded.

“Out of all the guys in Kidd’s gang you were the only one who I never even heard say a snide remark to me. What gives?”

He didn’t answer.

“It has to be more than just families.” I told him.

“It is.” he said, “But I’d prefer not o talk about it.”

I stared at him a moment.

“You had a crush on me, didn’t you?”

He tensed, but didn’t say anything. In fact, he actually turned his head away.

I giggled lightly, making him look back at me.

“You did.” I said smiling at him, “And you still do.”

“D-don’t be rediculuse.” He muttered.

“Okay.” I said and leaned up on my tipy-toes, so I was more to his height, “But I got a little secret for you.”

He stared down at me, I could feel the intense gaze even through his mask.

“I like you too.” I whispered and pecked his covered cheek, before going back to standing regularly and continuing on back to the house, leaving a dazed and most likely blushing Killer behind me.

I fought off the urge to skip, and merely made my way up to my room to change for dinner with uncle Mihawk.

My Onii-chen and I were sitting on the porch overlooking the court yard.

I had already changed into a black skirt, vest, and tie along with a red button down, from my black slacks, coat, and white button down.

“You’ve turned from tomboy, to girly, back to tomboy.” Luffy stated after seeing me again.

I shrugged, “I think now I’m a little more of both.” I told him.

“How?” Ace asked.

“I want to be the kind of Boss my father raised me to be, but I also have my girly aspects.” I explained.

“Ceerie-san.” We turned and saw Benn in the door way leading back inside, “It’s time to go.”

I nodded and stood up bidding my brothers a good-bye.

“Uncle.” I said as I came up to him as he waited at a table at Bartie’s.

“Ceerie.” He said and rose.

We embraced best we could. It had long ago stopped trying to tell everyone that they were just really tall. I had gotten my mother’s height, I wasn’t much taller than 5’6. . . . maybe.

“It’s good to see you.” I told him.

“As you.” He said.

We sat down and were handed menus.

“I wanted to talk to you earlier, but you pushed everyone away at the funeral.” He told me.

“I’m sorry.” I said, “I just wanted to be alone for a little while.”

“You’re entitled to that.” he told me, “And with your shedual I don’t blame you. But you need to make room in your life for your family.”

I nodded, and turned my attention back to the menu before me.

“It still bother’s me.” Uncle Mihawk told me after making a very long point.

“I know it does.” I told him, “It bothers me too. But it just might be put to an end soon.”

“How?” He asked his hawkeyes digging into me.

I smiled up at him as I said, “Hawkins said that I would soon find love. And I think I might have.”

“And from who?” He asked.

I smiled and looked away, “You’ll have to wait and find out.”

“Ceerie.” He said sternly.

I smiled at him again, “He’s good guy.” I assured, “He’s not like all the other’s who’ve sent proposals. In fact he hasn’t done anything but stand by my side.”

“Just the man you need.” He said as we continued to walk.

“I don’t need a man.” I told him, “I just need these proposals to stop.”

He chuckled as we came to the door.

“Thank you for tonight, uncle.” I said sincerely.

“I should be thanking you.” He said, “There is a reason why your father saved you, and I know it’s for a greater cause than we’d have ever thought.”

I smiled and hugged him again.

“Good night.” I told him.

“Good night.” He said and walked away.

I opened the door and went inside. I sighed knowing tomorrow I was going to have my first solo meeting with all of the Head’s. This might not be as pleasant as fighting, but I was pretty sure I would like it a lot more than Daddan tying my obie ‘properly’.

Family Feud(One Piece Part 16)

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I giggled lightly at what, Killer had just said and glanced at the clock before forcing myself up.

“Shit.” I muttered under my breath.

“What is it?” He asked concerned.

“Makino always gets me up at six, and I still need to do something about the sheets.” I told him, “You need to leave.”

“I understand.” He said and kissed me lightly as he picked me up off him and placed me gently next to him on the bed. I whimpered slightly at the loss of contact.

He kissed my forehead affectionately, and stood up. I threw him his shirt from the floor, and his mask from the bathroom while tossing my cloths in the hamper. I threw my house coat on as he put his mask on.

I stopped him before he touched the balcony and embraced him.

Killer tensed slightly, but relaxed and placed a hand on top of mine around his middle.

“Arigoto.” I told him, “For everything.”

“That should be my line.” He told me.

“We can’t let anyone know.” I warned.

“I’m not the type to kiss and tell.” He assured.

“I love you.” I whispered.

“I love you too.” He told me and pried himself from my grasp before leaving my room and jumping down from the balcony.

I took a moment to recompose myself. There was much I had to do.

I shut the door and headed for my bathroom. I turned the tap on and took a quick shower.

I got out and towel dried my hair as I pulled out my outfit for the day; a blood red button down, black tie, black blazer, black skirt and thigh high black nylons.

I quickly brushed my hair and put my torn panties in the bottom of my trash can. I then took all the sheets off my bed and bundled them up in one of my pillow cases. I picked it up and glanced at the clock before unlocking the door. I had a good fifteen minutes before Makino would be up. That should give me enough time to get rid of the evidence.

I hurried down stairs to the laundry room before anyone could see me. I closed the door behind me and threw the sheets onto the treating table. I spread the ones that were stained out and got out bleach, a scrub brush, and some cleaning stuff that the maids would always use.

I had finally gotten all the stains out, the only thing left was to wash them. And just as I was about to throw them into the washer the door opened and Makino came in, her eyes wide as she saw me here.

“Ceerie-sama. You shouldn’t be here.” She scolded.

“I know.” I said looking away hoping to come up with something to say.

“If there was a problem with the sheets you could have just told me.” She said and gently touched my shoulder. I flinched away lightly.

“There was no problem.” I told her, “It’s just, last night, I-” How was I supposed to continue this sentence? Makino was the mother figure I never really had growing up. And to lie to her face like this? I was ashamed.

“Did you have that bad dream again?” She asked out of the blue.

“H-huh?” I questioned not knowing what she was referring to.

She smiled brightly at me, “When you were still a child, you would get these terrible nightmares. Sometimes you would wake up screaming, others in a cold sweat, but one thing was for certain; you would always wet the bed.” She informed holding back a giggle, “As you grew up your nightmares became less and less frequent, but you would still get them occasionally.”

I looked away, blushing in embarrassment. She took it a completely different way.

Makino gently wrapped a loving arm around my shoulder and brought me into a side hug.

“You don’t have to be ashamed of it, Ceerie-sama.” She assured me, “I won’t tell a soul.”

“A-arigoto.” I said to her, still not looking her in the eye.

“Now go up stairs.” She said removing her arm and pulling on the sheets, “Daddan has already brought up your breakfast.”

I nodded and left hastily, I didn’t want to see anyone at the time.

I remembered that nightmare after Makino had brought it up. It was always the same one over and over again. Oflux had done what he’d done to me, but there was no one coming to rescue me this time. I shuttered to myself and forced those memories out of my head as I opened my bedroom door.

“Where were you?” Daddan asked unamused.

I didn’t answer I just looked away. She sighed in frustration and pulled the cover off of a plate to reveal eggs, bacon, sausage, hashbrown, pancakes, a biscuit, a muffin, a cinnamon bun, and oatmeal. Along with that there was hot chocolate and orange juice.

“Arigoto.” I said and walked to the table. There was a small round table on the other side of my bed closer to the balcony doors, It had two chairs, and when my father was alive he would always eat with me here when we had big things like this.

She nodded and stepped back.

“I will get you clean sheets for your bed.”

“Arigoto.” I said again, “After that you are dismissed.”

She nodded and went all the way back down stairs for fresh sheets.

While she was gone I had eaten about half of what was presented before me. It took her until she was finished with redressing my bed was I finished with my meal.

She took away the empty trays and left. I went to the bathroom and quickly washed my face to get rid of the sticky syrup and frosting that I knew was around my mouth. I finished, fixed my sleeves, and grabbed my hat before leaving my room and making my way down to the court yard.

I pulled on my boots and gently pushed open the door leading to outside. Not everyone was out yet, but I could make out who was.

I walked down the path towards the pond in the middle of the court yard. It was spring, all the trees were in bloom, and the pink petals of the sakura trees were fluttering down like snow on everything. It was a beautiful sight to behold.

“Ceerie-sama.”

I turned to see the representative of Drum City standing behind me.

“Dalton-san.” I said and bowed to him, “What may I do for you?”

“I did not want to address you about this as the party, but I thought now would be a better time.” He told me, I nodded for him to continue, “Our queen, Kureha, wanted to be the one to speak with you about this. But she’s been quite busy with her subjects.”

“Dalton-san.” I told him gently, “You are both an allie and a friend to me. You’ve helped us out when we needed it. If there is anything I can do for you or Drum City, please, do not hesitate to ask me. I’d be more than happy to help in any way I can.”

He took a deep sigh, “Other places have cut us off. They refused to make anymore effort with us because of how high up in the mountains we are. Our people are beginning to starve. It’s embarrassing for me to ask, but-

“Say no more.” I told him, “I’ll make arrangements for rations to be sent up immediately. And I’ll look into a safer way of transportation aswell.”

“We don’t need charity, Ceerie-sama.” He told me firmly.

“I do not give out charity.” I assured him, “I give what is earned. And consider it an advance.”

“For what?”

“I need a large factory. We’ve no room to expand here, and I need it as soon as possible.”

“What’s the factory for?”

“I have scientists in Punk Hazard working as we speak. They come up with amazing ideas that could greatly aid the daily lives of individuals, but we’ve no place to assemble them. If you can get, Kureha-sama to say yes, I’ll supply Drum City with rations, and more jobs.” I explained.

“A-arigoto, Ceerie-sama.” He said and bowed deeply, I could have sworn he was about to cry, “You have no idea how much this means. I’m sure Kureha-sama will say yes too.”

I nodded, “Please get her to call me with the answer. And I’ll send up supplies, equipment, and experienced carpenters with the second delivery of rations.”

“What about those who will be in charge of over looking the factory?” I could hear the concern in his voice.

“The carpenters will also be the managers, and a few skilled engineers.” I told him, “And don’t worry, I know they know what they’re doing.”

“Arigoto again, Ceerie-sama.” He said.

“It’s my pleasure, Dalton-san.” I told him.

He nodded and I continued on down to the pond.

Most of the morning I was discussing small details about trade agreements, being thanked for things my father and I have done for them, and receiving condolences for my loss that they haven’t managed to express in person before.

It was going closer to noon about then was when I caught sight of a man dressed in bright pink. I sighed to myself and finished my conversation with Spandam. I bowed to him and made my way up a small path to a stone bench under the largest cherry blossom tree in the court yard. Doflamingo was sitting on the far side as I approached him.

“Doflamingo-sama.” I said and bowed.

“Ceerie-san.” He smiled and nodded.

“May I?” I asked motioning to the bench place beside him.

“It would be my pleasure.” He told me.

I sat down about as lady like as I could, but didn’t cross my legs.

“Isn’t it lovely?” I asked him looking over the court yard. The bench had the best view over the entire court yard. It was lovely, especially with the beautiful pink petals decorating the entire place.

“I find beauty in other things.” He told me.

I had known he was referring to me.

“I find it strange how you chose this place.”I told him.

“How do you figure?” He asked.

“As a child, I was never really included in many of the Family events.” I told him, “I would sit here, and look out at all the people mingling and having fun when my father would have these. He would always meet me up here. And when I had a bad day at school I would sit here, he would come out and talk to me.”

“It must hold some bad memories.” He told me.

I shrugged, “At times.” I admitted, “But I know I can’t change what happened. What I know I can do is continue what he started, and hold on to the wonderful memories he went out of his way to make with me.”

“Your father was a good man, Ceerie.” He told me.

“It makes me glad you say that, Doflamingo-sama.” I said and smiled, “I know he was, and it makes me proud to be his daughter.”

I glanced over to see him fidgeting a bit.

I raised an eyebrow, “Doflamingo-sama, is there something wrong?”

He paused a moment before looking at me without his signature smile plastered on his face.

“I would like you accept this, Ceerie-san.” He said to me, in his hands he held a small, rectangular, gift wrapped box. It had orange and pink diagonal stripes, with a pink bow.

The way he held it to me, I knew I could not refuse.

I carefully pulled the ribbon and paper off and opened the box:

There was a solid gold chain, five amethyst cherry blossoms arranged along an onyx tree branch, all of which backed onto a gold plating.

I swallowed hard. When ever gold was given it was a sign of richness and respect, but at times admiration.

I lowered my head and thrust my arms back out to him, the box still in my hands.

“Doflamingo-sama, I cannot accept this! It is almost an advanced wedding gift.” I told him.

“Ceerie-san, I’m offended.” He said, I could hear the hurt in his voice.

“And I am overwhelmed.” I told him looking up at him, “You do not understand the amount of men that have made an attempt or suggestion for my hand. There are things I need to do before I can think of these things, and no one respects these boundaries.”

“You think it’s that?” He asked.

“Am I wrong?” I raised an eyebrow.

“This is a DonQuixtote family heir loom, it’s been in the family for almost a thousand years. And I wanted you to have it.” He told me.

“And as the main carrier of the Red Family honour, I cannot accept this. And I will not, as if something is to occur and it is not you I take as my husband I’d be shaming both our families.” I explained, “Please, I have no right.”

He looked at me a moment before his face broke out in another grin.

“That is what I love about you, Ceerie-san.” He said to me and gently took the box away from me, “Not only do you think of the big picture, but you care so much about others and their feelings.”

“That piece is bound to be invaluable, and I cannot see the future. And more than that I do not want to give any false hope.”

“You are too sweet.” He said.

“And you are too kind.” I told him biting back a hiss.

“I would like to speak to you about something else, if you have another moment.”

I held back a sigh and the disappointment in my eyes. I looked up at him and nodded for the blonde man to continue.

“Trafalgar Law.” He said slowly.

“What about him, Doflamingo-sama?”

“I was wondering what he was to you.” He explained, “And your maids, Hawkins, Beckman, Yasopp, Lucky, and that Killer fellow. What are they to you?”

I was taken aback slightly but I didn’t show it.

“Forgive me, Doflamingo-sama.” I started slowly, “But I don’t understand what it is you mean.”

He chuckled lightly, “Never mind.” He then said, “I think I’ll find out later everything I want to know. until then.” He rose and I quickly followed suit, “I believe I will take my leave of you. You’re hospitality, generosity, and company are second to non, Ceerie-san. And I hope we can meet again under better conditions.”

“I hope so aswell, Doflamingo-sama.” I said and bowed, “I wish you a safe journey back to Dressrosa, and thank you for coming.”

He chuckled as he walked off, leaving the garden and me shivering.

I didn’t like how he asked that question, and the way he said he would find out soon enough.

“Take care.” I said and embraced Vivi one last time.

“You all as well.” She said with a giggle.

We had spent the entire afternoon and evening with her, my brothers, and our friends. We were now seeing her off back to Alabasta.

We all watched as she boarded her ship and waved as it pulled out and headed for sea.

“It was nice to see her again.” Nami said when the ship was a few kilometers out.

“I miss her already!” Sanji exclaimed in distress after her ship.

“Suck it up ero-cook!” Zoro snapped.

“Enough.” I called between the two before a fight could break out between them. They didn’t start, and all eyes were on me.

I rubbed the back of my neck as I looked them all over and smiled.

“It was good to hang out with all of you again after so long.” I said finally, “And I just wish that it could happen a little more often.”

“We’ll always be here for you, Ceerie-san.” Robin assured me as she placed a gentile hand on my shoulder.

I nodded, “And I appreciate it. And I also hope you would forgive me. I need to go.” I said sadly, “After these kinds of meet ups a million more things are added to the already overflowing list, I just hope you can understand.”

“Is that the way a boss speaks?” Zoro asked out of the blue.

I looked up at him and scowled not knowing what he was talking about.

“Asking for forgiveness in order to do their duty to their people.” He all but snapped, “They should be first on your mind at all times, and other, fruitless, things should be an after thought. If you were my daughter I would be ashamed of you saying such a thing in your position.”

“Oi! Marimo!” Sanji yelled.

“He’s right about one thing.” I said before a fist could be thrown, “The people of the town come first. Their needs, the trade needs, our partner’s people, ways to expose the evilness and wickedly that’s occurring behind the scenes. But that’s also where you’re wrong, Zoro.” I told him a smirk playing on my lips and a passionate fire reigniting behind my sea blue eyes, “Because you aren’t my father, you can’t be ashamed of my actions as a daughter in this position. But I can’t stand here making a giant speech or monologue anymore. I have a city I’m gonna run and a check list longer than I am tall to get through before the end of the week. I’ll see you guys later.”

I walked off, Benn not too far behind me as they stayed back and talked for a little bit.

I did have almost way too much to do, and everyone knew it.

Now’s the time, I thought to myself. I can’t keep thinking that I can do everything on my own and have every decision be made by me, I have Law, Hawkins, Killer and the others for a reason. Not utilising them to their full potential was not only stressful on my part, but inconsiderate for them. I trusted all of them, we had each others back no matter what. That’s the way it needs to be in order to get anywhere.

I read over the supplies to be sent to Drumkingdom as I sipped a cup of coffee. I let Hawkins take over for that one and he got it all right.

Why did I doubt him again? I asked myself.

I signed on the line and handed it back over to him before picking up a folder underneath that one. It was the order for the laboratory, I skimmed over it knowing Law would have caught anything and signed that aswell.

“You aren’t as stingy anymore?” He said as he handed me a stack of papers and files each containing a contract or shipping order that needed my approval.

“I need to trust you guys.” I said as I refilled my mug, “It’s not good for anyone otherwise.”

Benn strode in the door and closed it behind him. He dropped the morning paper on the table and motioned for me to look at it.

I unfolded it after setting aside some of the papers.

Piercing green eyes that had haunted me for years on end were now gorged out from the skull that was staring back at me.

Killer had done a number on him. His eyes were out of his skull, his jaw all but broken off, tongue hanging on by a string. His chest cavity was split open, his heart, lungs and stomach were removed. His small intestines were wound around his neck a few times and he was missing all his fingers.

The article said he was mutilated both post and pre mortem, according to authorities. The only way that they managed to identify him was because of his dental records. And now the Black and Sweet families were being investigated for their relation to a notorious thief, murderer, and child molester.

As the article ended, the weight that came off my chest was almost amazing. I put a hand over my mouth and threw the paper down on the table trying to stop myself from laughing and crying from relief.

I was barely able to form much of a conscious thought back then. And playing on the beach in the sand, wadding in the water up to my knees because that’s all I was allowed without supervision. Being scooped up by a strange man, brought to a secluded, run down shack in the middle of the woods. Being set up for ransom, and then raped by said strange man both with himself and sodomized with various tools and objects he had with him at the time. The only reason why I was still alive today was because the same shack that he decided to call his ‘hide out’ was the club house of my brothers. They heard screaming, yelling, cursing, and sounds of a fight. They broke in, beat him til he was unconscious and then brought me back to town and my father.

I remembered Sabo wrapping his jacket around me because I was only in a tanky bathing suit which was ripped, stained with various substances, and I was soaking wet on top of it all. I was crying into Ace’s back the entire walk back home. While in the hospital they would visit me and when I got out and was well enough I played with them and they became my unofficial ‘body guards’ when I was away from my father.

The actual memories of what Oflux had done to me where now distant, they were nothing but scars that had healed and would continue to heal forever. He could no longer haunt me and hold me back from anything, I could now move forward as I saw fit with my life. No strings attached.

A few stray tears fell down my cheeks as I let out a soft laugh.

“Ceerie-ya, are you alright?” Law asked coming closer to me to make sure I was okay.

I nodded, “I’m just so relieved.” I finally managed.

One nightmare was now over and done with for me, but another was just about to take place. And this time I was going to be the shadow in the closet and the monster under the bed.

The Red Shadow Hunt(A Pokemon Paul Love Story Part 11)

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Jowey came back not long before night fell. She pushed open the doors and the lobby fell silent. She glided across the floor up to the bar and sat down.

“How’s the kid?” She asked.

Martain looked over to her with tired eyes, “You really did a number, Jay.” He told her, “I almost lost him twice. But he’ll live.”

“Did you get his name?”

“Tracey.” He told her and yawned, “and your knives are over there.”

She looked over to where he was motioning, next to the sink was a barrel full of sharp and pointy objects.

“Find anything interesting?” He asked her.

She shook her head, “There was nothing. No scouts, no other solders, no camp, no evidence of any one or thing coming up or down the mountain. It’s strange.”

“With you, what isn’t?” He asked.

“Why now of all times?” She asked and got up marching over to the sink, “The planting would have just happened, and that would make large openings for bandits and murderers alike.”

She threw her cloak off, and pulled her gloves from her fingers as well.

“Leaving a town without a large amount of protection is not only stupid, but risky as well.” She muttered and poured some water into the sink, “It doesn’t make sense.”

“Maybe he hired others like you to help protect the city while the guards were away.” Martain offered as he filled up more mugs.

Jowey shrugged as she started scrubbing the blades.

“I just thought he was smarter than that,” She said, “And they just wanted, Paul. How would they even know he was up here? There are a million cabins from there to the base of the mountains.”

“You find out who the rat is?” He asked.

“Not a hundred percent sure, but I got a hunch.”She said.

“Hunch is better than nothing.” He said.

Down the mountain in the kingdom, princess Dawn sat staring out the window to the mountains.

A soft knock came to her doors.

“Come in.” She called softly.

The doors flew open, and her father the king strode across the floor until he reached her.

“You truly think it’s his?” He asked giving her a sideways glance as he too looked out the window she was staring out of.

“I know it’s his.” She whispered, “He was my first, and no one else lied with me as much as he did. Father, I’m sorry for the dishonour, but I love him.”

Cyrus sighed and turned to fully look at his daughter. She had the same beautiful eyes and hair that her late mother had. She was her spitting image. She too was pregnant before any marriage happened. It broke his heart to realize he’d done the same thing her father had to her.

“Have I ever told you how we came to power?” He stated more than asked.

“No, sir.” She said rubbing her swollen stomach looking up the older man.

“We had to throw out the old king.” He told her, “He was evil. Always taxing, always killing, always wagging war. But he had the most beautiful of wives, all of which he’d stolen from those deserving of them. All of them died in childbirth, children too. Except for one.”

“Which one?” Dawn asked like a child would about a fairy tale.

“Hard to say.” He said, “But the wife survived, as did the daughter. But that woman was a witch, making the child unholy. It was just after the birth that we came in. We over threw the king and I made myself a better one then he. But we let the wife and child escape.”

“What happened to them?”

“I don’t know.” He said, “I heard rumors they she escaped up into the mountains and managed to another country, but it was a harsh winter that followed. If either of then are alive, it’d surprise me.”

“Father,” She asked timidly, “Why couldn’t we just imprison them?”

“They were evil, princess.” He told her, “God would have never forgave him or any of his family. Their daughter would have been the equivalent to the devil if she survived to maturity.”

“I see.” She said, “So we made everything better?”

“Yes.” He said, “Things will be even better once we can get your husband down here, and marry the two of you.”

“Father, why do you bring up our over taking of the kingdom now?” She asked.

He didn’t reply for a moment.

“I have a bad feeling that somehow, their daughter did survive.” He told her, “And that she’s keeping him there.”

“But she’d just be a woman, wouldn’t she?” She asked, “She easily could be overthrown.”

“That’s what trouble’s me.” He told her.

Spring wind howled past the tavern. One by one each of the men were asked up to Jowey’s room to be asked a few questions. The girls were in her room the entire time.

It seemed to be going on for hours. And it had, it wasn’t until well after midnight that Misty came down with four or five empty ale bottles and said,

“Jowey wants to see Martain, Alec, Zuren, Reggie, and Paul. She also wants a few more bottles.”

“Why would she want to see us?” Reggie asked the others.

“Probably to show she has no favoritism.” Zuren said and picked up two bottles.

“Probably right.” Martain said and grabbed another three.

Misty had two more and they all headed back up to her room.

Misty knocked softly.

“Come in.” Jowey said softly.

The door slid open and they all stepped in. The girls were all sitting either on or next to her bed in chairs. The divider was pushed off to the side. And Jowey was sitting in a chair in front of the window with her back turned to the door. There was another chair directly behind her, presumably where the other’s would have sat when she talked to them. Next to Jowey was a small table. There was an empty glass, and it was shown that she was holding something.

Misty grabbed and placed all the bottles of ale on the table next to her.

“Glad you guys could make it.” She said still leaning back, staring out at the moon.

She set down the bottle she had in her hand and picked up another one. She didn’t bother with the glass, and drank straight from the bottle.

“Don’t you think you’ve had enough?” Martain asked her.

“Nope.” She told him and took another swig, “For this kill I have to be drunk, or I wont do it.”

She giggled slightly, then went silent.

“You guys would never stab me in the back like that, would you?” She asked looking back slightly.

“W-why would we ever?” Reggie asked thrown off by the question.

She shrugged, “Didn’t think the one who sold me out would do that either.” She told them, “But then this happened, and here we are.”

“I think you’re drunk.” Martain said.

“Not even close.” She said, “I’m just getting tipsy.”

She laughed again then sighed. It was quiet a minute, then she stuck her hand out like she wanted someone to hold it.

“I can’t trust too many people.” She said, “But you guys I know I can.”

“Forever.” Zuren said and grabbed it.

She grinned up at him, then looked back at the others.

“Can I trust you guys too?”

Reggie went up and took her hand from Zuren, “Yeah.”

“Of course.” Martian said and took Reggie’s spot.

“We’ve been through worse.” Alec said and grabbed her hand.

“Paul?” She asked.

“I thought you knew that answer.” He said and walked up to her. He gently moved her head so she was leaning back and looking up at him, he then gently kissed her lips, “You can trust me you’re life, I’ll do the same.

She grinned again like a little child.

“I knew I could count on you guys.” She said, “Come on, let’s drink.”

She put the chair back down on all fours, and handed each of them a bottle.

“Drinking isn’t any fun alone.” She told them, “Girls, you’re dismissed, I’ll the kill the one in the morning.”

They filed out silently.

The six of them sat, silently, in her room. Drinking ale. And watching the moon.

Levi Ackerman One Shot

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“And one hundred! Good, drop!”

The 104th trainee recruits all fell to the ground in a crumpled heap after the order was given. They had all decided on joining the survey corps and bearing the wings of freedom on their backs and chests.

A very tall, officer stood up and put their hands on their hips as they sighed at the cadets before him. He was at least six feet tall, on the slimmer side, yet his body was lean and strong. He had a regular boy cut of reddish purple hair and yellow eyes that help authority and slight amusement at the sight before them.

They were all training on the training grounds, their jackets were all folded up on the stone wall of the barrier marking off the training area.

“You guys are pathetic!” He barked at the cadets, “A hundred push ups are nothing! Get on your feet.”

They scrambled up and quickly saluted.

“We’re doing laps!” He called to them, “We stay together, if you fall behind you will be continuing to run into dinner time, am I clear?”

“Sir?” A tall, brunette cadet whose name the officer remembered to be Jean asked, “How long will we be running for?”

“As long as I feel is necessary!” He barked back.

“Alex, that’s enough.”

A short man, with jet black hair and piercing grey eyes ordered as he approached the group.

“They wouldn’t be able to keep up with you anyway.” He said matter-of-factly, “I saw how hard you’ve been pushing them today, and while I appreciate the commitment; the brats’ll probably collapse from exhaustion before they can finish their chores for the day.”

“Are you sure, tiacho?” He asked the much shorter officer.

“Don’t question me, Alex.” He snarled.

Alex saluted his captain and allowed him to dismiss the cadets for some water and then for their chores.

“Have you even finished your chores yet, Alex?” Levi growled at the taller officer.

“Yes, tiacho.” He replied slowly, “You are more than welcome to check the stables if you don’t believe me.”

“I trust you have done them up to standards.” Levi said coldly as he turned away from his underling, “I’ve always trusted your mind, so it wont be necessary. What will be, is you taking a shower before dinner as you are filthy.” He ordered before pausing and turning around slightly to see the yellowed eyed cadet.

“Unless, of course, you would like to continue your work out for a little while before that.”

A small smile broke out on Alex’s face, “I would tiacho, thank you. You know you’re welcome to join me if you wish for a break.”

Levi nodded at the tall cadet before starting off towards the building.

“It’s very kind of you, but I have things to attend to.”

“Offers always open.” The cadet called back to him.


“Alex!” The tall, yellow eyed officer turned to see Erwin Smith approaching them.

Instantly they saluted to him.

“Good evening commander.”

“At ease, Alex.” Erwin assured.

Alex took back their regular stance.

“This has just come in the mail for you, I assumed it was important.” The blonde said as he held out a medium sized brown box to the younger survey corps officer.

Alex’s face lit up knowing what it was.

“Thank you very much, commander.” Alex all but exclaimed as they took the box from him, “It means a lot.”

“Don’t be a stranger, Alex.” Erwin said and started walking with the red-purple haired officer walking next to him.

“I did promise your father that if anything had ever happened to him, I would assume role as your father figure.” He reminded.

Alex’s eyes fell to the floor, then to the front patch on their jacket. It was much too big for them. Alex could never fill it no matter how large they grew. It was their father’s jacket he had worn to show his rank and squad he was in when he was alive. Alex’s father, the man they had been named after was the commander of the survey corps before he had met his end outside the walls, facing titans. Before he left, he entrusted his jacket to his youngest as a promise he would come back for it. Alex still carried it around waiting for their father to come back and claim it. Alex even refused, on multiple accounts, to get a jacket of their own, with their own name, rank, and trainee year.

“I don’t mean to  upset you, Alex. You know how dear your father was to me as well.” Erwin said in a fatherly tone.

“I know, sir.” Alex began, “It’s just hard to think about.”

Erwin nodded, knowing that the officer next to him had lost their entire family. All of Alex’s sisters and mother were killed a few years ago when the colossal titan breached the outer wall. And Alex’s father, Erwin’s best friend and brother in arms, was reported as missing on his last expedition. It was difficult for everyone who knew him.

“Let’s get to dinner, before that new recruit, Sasha, takes it all.” Erwin suggested trying to change the subject.

Alex nodded and they picked up the pace.

“By the way, Alex. What is in that box anyway?”

Alex smiled to no one in particular, “It’s a present for a friend.”


Alex sat down next to Levi at dinner that night, placing the box in front of them as they began to eat.

“What’s in the box?” Levi asked pausing in a sip from his tea.

Alex swallowed hard before replying, “It’s a present for a very special friend of mine.”

Levi just stared at the younger officer coldly before reaching for the box, but not before Alex snatched it up.

“What do you think you’re doing?” Alex asked.

“As your captain I am entitled to know what it is you intend to give to this friend of yours.” Levi said annoyed before reaching for the box again.

“Too bad, captain.” Alex growled, “You aren’t seeing what’s inside until I deem it acceptable.”

“Oh come on, Alex!” Hanji yelled leaning over the red-purple haired cadet, “We’re all curious.”

“And that’s how you’ll continue to be.” Alex snapped.

“Alex.” Levi growled, “Let me see.”

Alex sighed before getting up out of their seat.

“Alright.” Alex said in defeat, before a mischievous grin broke across their face, “You can see if you can catch me.”

And with that, the yellow eyed cadet took off out of the building, heading towards to forest. Not without hearing their captain call after them.

Alex was, after all, humanities fastest.


Levi and Alex went sprinting through the courtyard of the survey corps barracks. Levi chasing his cadet in order to make them stop.

“Alex.” He growled for the millionth time.

It was painfully obvious to everyone, especially Levi, that Alex was just toying with him. If the red head wanted to, they could be speeding off as far away from the captain as their legs would carry them.

“You have to catch me if you want to find out.” Alex teased again.

“If you don’t stop now you’ll clean this entire place top to bottom on your own!” Levi threatened.

“How many times have you said that?” Alex yelled back.

“Alexandria!” I strong, strange, rough, male voice echoed into the court yard.

Alex and Levi stopped in their tracks and stared in the area the voice came from.

Under the cover on the walk way, standing next to Erwin, stood a man almost seven feet tall, with shaggy purple-ish hair and piercing blue eyes. He possessed a built frame, and stood with authority in his posture.

All the breath that was present left as soon as Alex laid eyes on the man.

“Alex?” Levi questioned the cadet.

“Here.” The officer said softly shoving the box into the hands of the corporal before moving slowly towards the man who called out to them.

“Daddy?” The yellow eyed cadet asked as they approached.

Purple haired man chuckled, a deep chuckle, straight from his chest.

“You’ve grown a lot Alexandria.” He said with a genuine smile.

Alex’s topaz eyes began to fill with tears as they saluted the man in front of them.

“Lieutenant Alex Surirer, reporting on a successful mission, sir!” The office told the older man, before slipping off the much too large jacket and handing it to their father, “I have kept it in the most prestige of shape as possible. It is an honour to have you back, sir!”

“Alex.” The taller man called softly.

The tall girl looked up hesitantly afraid her tears would spill out looking her father in the eye.

“I’m glad you’re alive.” He said placing a hand on her slim shoulder.

Alex gave a quiet sob before lunging forward to pull her father into a tight embrace.

“Oh, sweetheart.” Her father said soothingly, “That jacket doesn’t mean anything, I’m just glad to be back with you.”

“You were reported as missing all these years.” The red head choked out, “I thought you were dead, and I was alone.”

“Oh, Alex. You were never alone, as long as you kept those closest to you in your heart.”

“How?” Was all she managed to get out through tears.

“I was separated from the expedition and somehow found my way to the northern most point of the wall. I was horribly injured and couldn’t leave for a long while, on top of that I suffered amnesia so I couldn’t have made my way back if I wanted too.” He began to explain as he held his daughter closer, “I was working with traders to get some idea of who I was. We managed to get through the agricultural zone before wall maria was broken, so I got through unscaved. It wasn’t until visiting the survey corps memorial did things start coming back to me. I supposes your mother and siblings didn’t make it then?”

Alex just nodded and sniffed, burying herself further into her father’s chest not wanting to show anyone her tears.

“Erwin told me you’ve become a very strong and respectable officer.” He said changing the subject. He pulled slightly away from Alex to look at her as he said, “I’m proud of you.”

“Alexander.” Erwin cut in, before more tears could be shed, “I’m sure you’d want to rest, after all you’ve been through a lot.”

“Thank you, Erwin.” Alexander started, “But I think I would like to spend some more time with my little girl. Oh, I just remembered, I’ve brought a gift for you.”

“Me?” Alex asked wiping away her tears.

Alexander nodded, “It reminded me a lot of your mother, I hope you like it.”

As Levi watched the three of them walk off, he knew there was something wrong occurring before him. He just couldn’t place it right away. He still had the box Alex had been keeping from him for an entire day, but he couldn’t bring himself to open it. Not after witnessing what he just had.

Subconsciously he held the box a little bit tighter as he slowly started to make his way up to Alex’s room.


Levi knocked on the door awaiting a response.

“Who is it?” Alex’s rough voice called through the wood.

“Levi.” He replied coldly.

“Come in.” She said sounding unsure.

Levi raised an eyebrow as he slowly opened the door wondering what was going on. His eyes almost popped out of his head, jaw almost dropped to the floor, and he would have dropped what he was carrying had he not spotted Alex’s father in the corner of the room through the mirror said girl was standing in front of.

The present her father had brought for her was a pale pink peasant dress, with a black half corset around her natural waist. The sleeves were short and only fell just above her elbow, the neck line was wide causing the material to fall off both of her shoulders revealing the pale, creamy skin to the world. Surprisingly enough, the material actually fell to floor length on her, despite her incredible height.

Alex had on a lopsided smiles as she looked at her captain, with a bright blush evident on her features.

“Hello, captain.” Alex said, trying to compose herself best she could despite it being painfully obvious she was not at all comfortable in the current situation.

“Dare I ask?” Levi said closing the door behind him and crossing the room quickly to place the box on her desk on the opposite end of the room.

“I’d rather you not if you don’t mind.” Alex said quietly.

“Erwin told me your name was Levi, was it?” Alexander asked approaching the much shorter man.

“That is correct.” Levi said looking up at him, “And you must be former commander Alexander Surirer. It is an honour to meet you sir.”

Alexander nodded, “You are obviously a good friend of my little Alex here, what do you think of her in this dress. I think she looks a lot like her mother.”

“I’ve never met her mother, sir.” Levi said boardly, but on the inside he had to admit she did look good.

“It kinda reminds me of the dress she wore when she and you got married.” Alex commented after looking herself up and down in the mirror one last time before turning to face the men.

“It does indeed, sweetheart.” Alexander smiled.

Levi’s eyes instantly lit up, he knew what was off about this guy now. And he knew that Alex knew and was drawing him out.

“I guess you looked in the box, huh, captain?” Alex asked looking down, she had wanted it to be a surprise.

Levi shook his head, “I figured you were correct in saying that the time will come for me to know, until then cadet.”

Levi turned and left the room without another word.

He sighed when he got back out into the hallway.

She looked beautiful, he finally admitted to himself. A beauty that no amount of training, or titan killing, or fighting skills could ever bring to light. But it all shone through in that one dress.

Levi sighed again and walked down the hall hurriedly.


“I only wish I could have seen the rest of them again.” Alexander said to his daughter at dinner that night.

Alex nodded, “I know my brothers would have been over joyed to see you again.”

“I missed them too, Alex.” Alexander said softly, “But I am glad that you have made it this far.”

Alex smiled up at her father.

“What’s the matter, Levi?” Alex asked looking over to the shorter male, “It looks like a cat just got your tongue.”

Levi had stopped mid sip overhearing the conversation going on between father and daughter.

“It just occurred to me that I hadn’t finished my paperwork for the day, that’s all.” Levi said slowly.

“Would you like me to bring you a pot of tea later tonight?” Alex asked as Levi rose to his feet.

“That would be lovely, lieutenant.” Levi groaned as he took his leave.

Both officers knew what the other did at that moment, and knew they were going to have to work together to make this possible.


A soft knock was heard at corporal Levi’s door.

He muttered a gruff ‘come in’ to the person he knew was on the other side.

“Captain.” Alex said in recognition as she entered his office.

“Lieutenant.” He replied watching the girl cross the room in just a few strides of her long legs. She was still clad in her new dress she had been wearing earlier, and was carrying a tray with a tea pot and a single tea cup on it.

Levi raised an eyebrow as she set it down on the corner of his desk.

“You aren’t joining me tonight?” He asked the red head.

Alex straightened up and shook her head.

“I hope you don’t mind, but my father was taking me for a walk tonight. He said there was something in the woods he wanted to show me.” She replied. Topaz yellow eyes held the stare of steely grey ones for a few seconds.

Levi broke contact and looked down at his desk.

“So be it.” He said softly waving her off.

“Thank you, sir.” Alex said before swiftly leaving.


“The moon is pretty.” Alex said absent mindedly as she and her father walked side by side in almost complete darkness.

“I’m surprised you aren’t afraid, Alex.” Alexander said to his daughter.

“Why would you say that?” Alex asked, “I’ve faced titans, bandits, and wild animals before. Why should I be afraid of the dark?”

Alexander chuckled, “It’s always the people who have braved through the toughest things that become afraid of the most irrational things.”

Alex stared at the ground for a moment before replying, “I think my fear is rational.”

“And what are you afraid of, sweetheart?” Alexander asked wrapping his arm around the smaller girl’s shoulder.

“I’m afraid of losing the people closest to me, and that’s why I do everything I can to protect them.”

“Oh, Alex.” Alexander said, his face breaking into a smirk as he stopped in his tracks, forcing Alex to stop with him, “You’ve always lost everyone who is close to you.”

“So you’re finally revealing yourself then I take it?” Alex asked staring dead ahead not looking at the man next to her.

“I thought I was pretty convincing as him, don’t you?” He asked leaning in closer to the girl’s neck.

“You made too many mistakes for anyone who actually knows me to buy your acting.” Alex retorted.

“Where were my mistakes?” Alexander demanded, “I copied that man perfectly.”

“I don’t have any brothers.” Alex said without emotion, “I’m the youngest of six girls, my parents, who were never married, never came close to having a boy. And my name isn’t Alexandria.”

“Oh, Ale-”

The girl smacked the imposter’s arm off of her and punched him square in the jaw.

“You have no right to utter that name.” She snarled.

“Your name?” He demanded.

“I was named after my father.” Alex hissed, “You have no right to say either of them.”

“I wouldn’t make another move, if I were you girly.” A strange, male voice said from behind the red head.

Other men stepped up from the shrubbery, Alex was surrounded.

“You impersonated him, to gain information about the military?!” Alex demanded holding back tears.

“Of course not,” The imposter said as he stood up, and for the first time in her life, Alex felt small, “Do you know how much a person would pay for someone with yellow eyes?”

Before Alex could say anything a loud gun shot rang through the air, followed closely by her screaming in pain. The red head fell to the ground in a crumpled heap. One of the men had shot her leg, preventing her from escaping.

The imposter squatted down in front of her.

“Now what is Humanities Fastest going to do?” He teased.

“I’m sorry captain, I should have invited you along.” Alex replied with a bitter laugh.

The imposter was about to say something, but was cut off.

“Tch. Brat, next time don’t skip out on tea.”

All of the black market hunters turned to look up a tree where the voice had come from. Standing on a thick branch, was Levi Ackerman, Lance Corporal of the survey corps.

“I’m sorry to request this captain,” Alex said looking up at the man after she tore off a strip from the hem of her dress, “But I’m going to need medical attention very soon.” She swiftly tied the strip around her leg just above the bullet wound to slow the bleeding.

“Shut up, brat.” Levi snapped, “After skipping out on me you should be lucky I even came.”

“Yes, sir.” Alex said and sat in silence as some of the hunters turned their fire on Levi, but he was too quick with the maneuver gear to be hit by any of them. Levi went flying through the air cutting down all of the hunters and removing the arm of the man who impersonated Alex’s father.

The imposter screamed out in pain and clutched his now severed arm.

“How dare you impersonate such a highly decorated officer, and attempting to pull something like this on his only surviving kin.” Levi growled.

“You must understand!” The imposter pleaded as he fell backwards, “It’s difficult in this world to make a quick buck. And if I didn’t then the Underground Mafia would have my hea-”

But he couldn’t finish as Levi had plunged his blade in the man’s chest.

“Never bring up those vile maggots to me.” He growled.

Levi pulled the blade form the man and sheathed both of them before approaching the girl.

“I’m sorry captain.” Alex said looking down at the ground.

Levi knelt down and scooped the girl up in his arms, cradling her against his body bridal style.

“You’re a lot lighter than I thought.” Levi said as he turned to bring her back to the barracks.

Levi walked for a little while in silence before he felt the urge to say.

“It isn’t your fault, Alex.”

“I know,” The girl replied, “But there is still a large part of me that really just wants him back. That wants any of them back.”

“I understand you want them back, Alex but you aren’t alone anymore.” Levi assured.

“I know, but it’s difficult.” She admitted.

“I won’t leave you, Alex.”

“Levi?” This caught her off guard.

“I wont I promise.”

“You can’t keep that.” Alex said shaking her head, “We’re survey corps, our job is basically to die to find out more about titans and kill as many as we can in the process.”

“Then I won’t die before you do.” Levi said smiling at the girl in his arms.

Alex’s cheeks flamed, she couldn’t deny how attractive her captain looked when he smiled. Maybe that’s why Petra had a crush on him. Then something dawned on her.

“But then, that won’t be fair to you.” She said quietly.

Levi shrugged, “I haven’t really had anyone, so it won’t matter.”

“Captain.” Alex said assertively, making the shorter man look at her, “You have me, and if you don’t leave me I’ll stay with you.”

Levi let out a soft little laugh at this.

“Deal.” He said and pressed his lips to Alex’s cheek.


When Alex next opened her eyes she was staring at the ceiling of the infirmary back at the survey corps barracks.

“What?”

“Alex-san?”

Said girl looked over to see her team-mate, Petra, leaning over her bed with a relieved look on her face.

“What happened?” Alex questioned as she tried to sit up, but was pushed back down my Hanji.

“Apparently your father was an imposter.” Hanji explained, “And what happened was he was actually working for the mafia of the underground to get some people who met their buyers specifications. One of them was yellow eyes, which you have. You were injured and I had to operate on you to remove the bullet and stop the bleeding after Shorty brought you back in. He defeated all the workers and carried you back here all by himself. Must have been hard for the little guy carrying such a big girl like you though.”

“Hanji!” Petra yelled at the squad leader.

“It’s alright Petra.” Alex assured, “What day is it?”

Eld answered, “Wednesday.”

“So I was only out for a day?” Alex asked trying again to sit up, but was pushed down by Hanji again.

“Yup.” Hanji said, “But if you keep trying to get up, you’ll be out longer.”

Alex nodded, “Petra, can you do me a favor?”

“Of course what is it?” The blonde replied with a smile.

“Can you go into my room, on my desk there is small, brown box. Can you bring it to me?”

Petra nodded and headed off to gather up what her friend and team-mate needed.

“Of all things to ask her to get.” Hanji said leaning over the yellow eyed girl, before she perked up a lot, “Are you finally going to show us what you got!?”

Alex smiled and shook her head, “I’m gonna wait to give it to someone today.”

“What’s the special occasion?” Oluo questioned looking coldly at the girl on the bed.

“Anniversary.” Alex said blandly.

Hanji slumped back knowing Alex wouldn’t give anymore information. All the boys gave each other sideways glances.

Petra came back moments later with the box in hand, walking in behind her was the squad leader, Levi.

“Captain.” Eld, Gunther, Oluo and Alex said as the short man entered the room.

“Hi, Levi.” Hanji sang waving to the coal haired man.

Levi rolled his eyes at the other squad leader, before turning his attention to the girl in the bed.

“Petra told me you were awake now.” Levi said before anything else, “How are you feeling?”

“A lot better.” Alex answered with a smile.

“Oh!” Petra exclaimed, “I almost forgot!” The shorter girl handed the box to her topaz eyed team-mate.

“Thank you, Petra.” Alex said earnestly.

“No problem.” The girl returned with a smile.

“Don’t you have chores to do?” Levi asked the rest of the team.

They all sighed and nodded before heading out.

Levi cleared his throat and motioned Hanji towards the door.

The other squad leader giggled and headed out after the Special Operations Unit, closing the door behind her.

Levi opened his mouth to say something but was cut off.

“Happy anniversary, Levi.” Alex said shyly holding the box out to him.

Levi looks at it in question before gingerly taking it from her long, slim fingers.

Levi pulled the sting and opened the lid carefully. Inside there was a large amount of paper, he looked up at the red head who just nodded at him to continue.

Levi carefully dug in the paper for whatever he had to find. He didn’t have to dig for very long, Levi’s pale fingers almost instantly clasped around a bone china teacup and saucer with deep blue, floral designs on them.

Levi looked up at Alex in shock, he knew how much this would have cost her. Going deeper, Levi pulled out a matching tea pot and a second cup and saucer.

Steel grey eyes looked at topaz ones in surprise.

“For the next time we have tea.” She smiled.

Levi half laughed as he leaned forward, his forehead touching her shoulder.

“Do you like it?”

“I love it, Alexandia. Thank you.” Levi whispered.

“Don’t call me that.” Alex half whined.

“I’m just sorry I don’t have anything for you.” Levi said biting his lip.

“It doesn’t matter, Levi.” Alex told him, “You’ve given me too much as it is.”

“Like what?” Levi snapped at her as he looked the red head in the eye.

“Promising to stay with me for as long as our mortal lives will allow for it.” She answered with an even bigger smile.

Levi leaned forward again as he closed his eyes and pressed his pale lips to her tanned forehead in his attempt to hide his smile.

“Happy anniversary, Alex.”Levi said, this time pressing his lips to hers.

The Meaning Of This Ayame(A Yu Yu Hakusho Hiei Two-Shot Part 2)

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We fell through the sky, giant trees waiting beneath us. Kurama pulled out a seed and it turned into wing like shapes, Hiei, Yusuke, and Kuwrabara grabbed on to parts of it. Botan and Kyotu glidded down on their oars. I grabbed Zooroo put him in my back pack.

Falling into the thicket of the woods I braced myself and jumped from tree branch to tree branch until I hit the forest floor.

Zooroo stuck his head out of the top and looked at me. I shrugged and stood waiting for the others to glide down and meet me.

“That was reckless, Ayame!” Kyotu scolded me, “What if you missed a step or something?”

“Then I’d of caught myself and still managed to get down with out a scrape.” I said like it was the most obvious thing in the world.

“Don’t do that again, baka!” He told me.

I stuck my tongue out at him and turned to Hiei and Kurama.

“Where abouts are we?” I asked.

“Hakito forest.” Hiei told me, “Nothing here but demon bugs and arachnids. They shouldn’t pose a threat.”

I nodded.

“Actually,” Kurama said staring down at his comunicator, “We aren’t too far off of where that cave should be.”

“How far are we?” Yusuke asked.

“Only about a day or so’s walk east.” He replied.

“Not bad.” I said, “Let’s go, we’re gonna burn daylight.”

They agreed and we headed east.

I paused, “Botan, come on you’ll be left behind!” I called to her.

“This place is crawling with bigs!” She shreeked and jumped into Kyotu’s arms.

“You’re scared of a few bugs?” I asked her.

“And you aren’t?” She demanded as we walked, Kyotu still carrying her.

“I have eight older brothers!” I nearly cried, “They’d put bugs and stuff in my bed when I was little.”

I heard the guys snort in laughter.

“They seem like a fun bunch.” Yusuke commented.

“They are.” I told him, “But they’re a pain in my ass.”

“Roooo!” Zooroo agreed.

“Any chance you’d bring them to work?” Kuwrabara asked me.

I rolled my eyes, “Why so you guys can meet the guys who are responsible for me kicking your butts the other day?”

“What are you talking about?” Hiei snarled.

I smiled slightly under the brim of my hat, “Oh, nothing.”

“I demand to know.” He hissed.

“Hiei.” Kurama warned, “Ayame-chan, would you please speculate what it is you mean?” He asked me almost sweetly.

I sighed, “Eight older brothers, I’m the youngest and only girl.” I told them, “Either learn to fight or get held down, spit on, and used as a punching bag. I’m sure you know which one I chose.”

Yusuke whistled, “So how long have you been able to fight like you do?” He asked.

“You mean giving people internal bleeding, or just hand to hand?” I asked.

“Both.” He said.

“You first.” I told him.

“Hand to hand ever since I can remember.” He told me, “I’ve only ever been able to use spirit power for going on a year now.”

I nodded, “I’ve been able to fight since before I could talk.” I told him, “I’ve been a spirit detective for about three years.”

He whistled again, “Must a kept you pretty busy.”

I shrugged, “I’m used to busy.”

We came to the base of a large mountain. Kurama pulled out his communicator again.

“The cave should be just on the other side.” He said.

“Does that mean we have to go around?” Botan whinned.

“Why are you complaining?” Yusuke yelled, “Kyotu’s the one who’s carrying you!”

I rolled my eyes, just like Kyotu to carry around a girl and think she’s in love with him.

“You don’t wanna come, you can head back to spirit world.” I told her, “That goes for all of you, but I’m pushing on. This is my mission.”

“No way I’m letting you and some purple rat get a head of me.” Yusuke told me following me up the mountain.

“You aren’t about to out do me, Uromeshi!” Kuwrabara yelled.

“I suppose we should go with them to stop them from doing anything stupid shouldn’t we?” Kurama asked Hiei.

“Hn.” I faintly heard his reply.

“Wait for us!” Botan yelled as Kyotu ran up with her in his arms.

“How much further?” Botan asked.

We were about half way up the mountain, free hand rock climbing. Kyotu couldn’t carry her anymore because of the cliffs and stuff.

“Only a few more hours, then it should widen out and be about an hour’s walk down hill.”

“That much longer?” She whinned.

I paused, “If you’re that tired, couldn’t you and Kyotu go on your oras, then we could have flown around the mountain.”

“You’re right!” She exclaimed and made her ora appear. She got on and floated away fro the mountain.

“I’ll stay right beside you.” She grinned.

I sighed, well at least she wont be complaining anymore.

I shouldn’t have had that thought, I stepped on the wrong spot and it crumbled under my feet.

“Whaw!” I yelped as I fell.

Someone caught my wrist, I looked up and it was Kurama.

“Arigoto.” I said as he hauled me best he could on the sheer ledge.

“Don’t worry about it.” He told me, “We promised Koenma we’d take care of each other right?”

I nodded, “Right.”

But that entire time I was uneasy. I felt like someone was glaring holes into both me and Kurama. I was just wondering whom.

We managed to make it back down the mountain in record time.

“Let’s camp here for the night.” I suggested.

“Why stop now?” Kuwrabara asked dumbly, “We’re close to that cave right? Why not keep going.”

“Do you have any idea how many insects prey on those that go into their territories at nigh?” Hiei asked him, “I’ve seen the acid dissolving bones of exceedingly strong demons the morning after. If you’re truly more stupid than I first thought be my guest. We’ll camp here, but don’t come back crying when you’re running from an angry sworm.”

Three.

Two.

One.

“Need any help with the fire there Kurama?” He asked.

“No I have this.” He said, “Why don’t you help the girls with the tents.”

“Okay.”

“Why two?” Yusuke asked as he fumbled with the rods.

“One for you boys, and the other for Ayame and myself.” Botan told him.

“You’ve never done much camping, have you?” I asked him as he got himself tangled in the rods more.

“I’d like to see you do any better!” He chalenged.

“Hold still.” I told him.

Hiei’s pov.

I was sitting next to the fox staring into the flames. But the truth was I was looking over the fire at the onna.

She carefully untangled Uromeshi from the bent pole. Then she pushed it through many holes in the fabric. Before I knew it was what a pile of sticks stings and cloth became two tee-pee looking buildings.

She stuck her tongue out at Uromeshi, and he got mad.

“You truly do know your way when it comes to things like this, don’t you, Ayame-chan?” The fox complimented.

I sent him a side ways glare.

The fox was getting too close to the onna. He helped her earlier, and help her wrist longer than necessary. He was beginning to bug me.

“I believe dinner’s ready.” The fox said.

“What’s for dinner anyway?” Uromeshi asked.

“Spit fire chicken.” He said as they sat down, “Koenma loaded me up with food before we left. It was nice of him.”

“It was.” Ayame smiled as she pulled off her cap.

I yearned to run my fingers through the silky looking locks and pull to hear her say my name.

“Is everything alright, Hiei?” Botan asked me.

Wrong onna, wrong onna, wrong onna, wrong onna.

“I’m fine.” I said harshly, “I’m just not acustume to human cuisine.”

“Spit fire chicken is really good, you’ll enjoy it.” Onna told me.

“Human food.” I muttered.

“Just try it.” The fox said forcing a plate towards me.

I took a hesitant bite. It wasn’t half bad.

“Well?” Urimeshi asked me.

“I’ve had better.” I said, it was true.

Ayame’s pov.

We woke up early the next morning and took the tents down.

I skipped breakfast, but Kurama insisted saying it was the most important meal of the day. So I ate a little fruit to keep him satisfied.

We head on along the edge of the mountain. We came across a few of what Hiei described last night. Bones, melted with acid, picked clean of all mean, blood, and marrow.

Botan was nearly sick at the sight.

“I think this is it.” I said checking my communicator.

“I believe so.” Kurama confirmed.

“What should we do?” Kuwrabara asked.

“Wait here.” I said dropped my back pack, Zooroo came out to see what was going on. I slipped my boots and socks off.

“Roo.” Zooroo whimpered.

I crouched down and put my cap on his head, letting my hair out.

“You stay here little buddy, I’ll be back soon.” I told him.

I stood up and had my back to everyone, “I don’t know what’s lying in there.” I told them, “I don’t know how long it’ll take. But I’m not gonna die in there. And no one comes in after me. I’ll be back out as soon as it’s done. I promise.”

“Could always hold you to your word, couldn’t I, Ayame?” Kyotu asked.

“You be the judge of that.” I told him.

“Becareful, Ayame-chan.” Kurama told me.

“You aren’t my mother, Kurama.” I told him and stepped into the cave, I looked back over my shoulder, “No matter what no one comes in here. I’ll be out as soon as it’s done. No matter what you hear, see, feel, or anything. Alright.”

“Like we’d want to know what’s in there?” Yusuke scoffed.

Hiei’s pov.

I watched the onna’s back as she disappeared into the darkness of the cave.

We set up camp next to the cave so that she’d be fine when she came out.

Not twenty minutes after she entered there were cries of pain coming from there.

Uromeshi ran to the cave opening to help, but was stopped by Kyotu.

“This is her mission.” He told him, “Ayame is a big girl, she can take care of herself.”

I glanced down at the purple rat, he seemed to in pain as well.

“How do we know?” Uromeshi demanded.

“I’ve only ever heard Ayame cry out like this once before.” He told him, all of our ears perked up, “The grim reaper that brings the spirit detective to headquarters is also considered a partner to the said spirit detective.” He explained.

“When was the first time?” I asked without thinking.

“There are a few ways to identify the legendary demon hunter, Kashaykiki Ayame.” He told us, “The multiple pierced ears, the long green hair, a black belly button studded piercing, and a scar on her tail bone.”

“That’s the demon hunter?” I asked.

He nodded, “I thought it was obvious when she told you her name.” He sighed, “Guess everyone expects her to be curvy like an actual woman.” He paused a minute, “Please don’t tell her I said that!”

“I think if she lives through this, what you said about her will be the least of our worries.” Botan told him.

The cries of pain were louder.

Kyotu sighed,”The question is how did she get that scar.” He continued, “It was her third mission. Still only an eleven year-old girl. She was supposed to kill the demon Moysoku.”

“The Moysoku?” The fox asked.

He nodded, “We all thought it was a little too soon for her to even think about going up against a demon like that. But we were all proven wrong.” He paused like the memory hurt him, “I stayed back to give her the room she needed. Eventually they were both about even, but they were both really badly injured. I was about to step in and grab her, if we lose her then what’s the point of having spirit detectives?” He swallowed, “But she went in for the finishing move, much like what she did for Uromeshi, but his was on such a small scale in comparison.”

“What do you mean small scale?” He barked.

“The original intent for, Ayame thrusting her palm up against her opponent’s abdomen, in between the stomach and the heart is because that’s where the spirit power is centered. She’s obtained the ability to move it through her body at will.” He told him, “She moved the majority of it to one of her palms, then by connecting her energy with her opponent’s, and how she can control it, she literally pulls the power out of the opponent, than mixes it with hers before forcing it back in. And at will that basically causes her opponent to explode into a bloody mess all over the place.”

“And she,” He swallowed, “Could have done that to me?”

“Yes.” He said brightly, “The name of the attack is quite fittingly named, ‘Bloody Shower’.”

“Stupid name.” The owf mumbled.

“Not when you think about it.” The fox defended, “If I understand this right, then with the help of her’s and her opponent’s spirit power she manages to liquify the entire body sending it out in every direction in a bloody mess. And I’d assume with the way the spray is it would look much like a bloody shower.”

“Kurama, you are exactly right.” He said, “She was going in for that. But he anticipated, he struck one of his claws deep into her lower back, but not before she got a clean shot. Ayame managed to kill him easily, but not without a price.”

“A price?” Botan asked, the cries stopped.

“She was nearly paralyzed.” He said, “That means she’d have to give up everything she loved. Fighting, dancing, her long walks every morning.”

“Dance?” I asked.

“A beautiful dancer, it honestly helps her with the detective business.” He said.

“That does explain how she dodged earlier attacks.” The fox said.

Cries from the cave went back on. I wish I knew what was going on. But looking at her demon, I’d probably go on a rampage.

I wanted to kill Moysoku again for hurting her, I wanted to kill Kyotu for letting it happen, I wanted to kill the fox for being so nice to her, I wanted to kill Uromeshi and the Owf for looking at her, I wanted to kill any and everyone who ever hurt, touched, or even looked at her. What was wrong with me?

I went up and sat in a tree staring at the cave. I tried using my Jagen eye but I couldn’t see inside. All I could do was stare between the mouth of the cave and purple rat to see what was going on.

Of course that plan was gone when Botan brought it into the crappy put up tee-pee to rest.

I had to talk to the fox. He’d know.

I sat beside him staring into the flames, We were on night watch incase anything came and tried anything.

“Fox?” I inquired.

“What is it, Hiei?” He asked.

“What’s wrong with me?” I asked.

“What do you mean?” He asked.

“My palms are sweaty, I can’t seem to sleep, my body’s rejecting food, and I keep thinking about this onna. What’s wrong?” I asked again.

He chuckled slightly, “Hiei, my friend I believe you’re in love.”

My eyes widened, “Love?” I asked.

He nodded, “It’s a common emotion to feel, honestly. You want to protect a person, and if any harm befalls them, you want nothing more than to kill the person over and over again. You’d do anything to make them smile. And just seeing them drives you wild.”

“How do you know?” I hissed.

“I saw how you looked at Ayame-chan when she first walked in, in that yukata. You couldn’t take your eyes off her.”

“She looks good in purple.” I muttered, “Is there a way to cure it?”

“Only one.” He said, “You’ll have to tell, Ayame-chan how you feel and hope she feels the same way.”

“Do me a favor and don’t call her chan anymore.” I told him.

“Does it bother you?” He asked.

“Quite.” I replied.

“I’ll stop, on the condition that you tell her.” He offered.

“Fine.” I said, “As long as it will make this go away.”

The fox stiffed a giggle as I said that. But I didn’t bother to ask him about it.

“This has been going on for three day’s straight! When’s it gonna end!?” The owf yelled.

“When she’s done.” Kyotu told him, “We had no idea how long it’d take us to find this, and we still have no idea how long it’s going to be before she masters her powers. It’s only a matter of time.”

“How do you figure?” He asked.

“Ayame has always caught on quick.” He explained, “If it takes someone an average of a week to master something, she’ll have it done in three or four days.”

“Impressive.” The fox said, “Usually the mastering of such things early take a toll on one’s body. But, Ayame seems to be able to work past it.”

“She’s still never found her limits yet.” Kyotu said, “She’s tried on so many counts, but I think this one will finally do the trick for her.”

“She doesn’t have a limit?” Uromeshi asked.

“Not that she’s aware of.” He said, “She might have found it in her grade school days and worked past it to never find it again subconsciously. But I suppose we’ll find out soon enough.”

No limit to be found? I thought to myself, I think I just might start taking a liking to this onna after all.

Her cries were worse when the sun rose in the morning. And judging by the rat things were not good in there.

About noon was when I smelled trouble.

Hoards of demons made their way over to the cave, saying that the powerful energy emanating from there would soon belong to them and if we didn’t want to suffer we’d move aside.

We fought back best we could but there were a lot.

I suddenly realised that the onna’s cries had gone completely. Out of the corner of my eye I saw the rat was still. This bothered me.

The cave, and half the mountain, suddenly collapsed behind me.

There she stood, ragged and torn cloths, scratches, and blood, her blood, hair a mess. But the power coming from her body, it was immense.

I was pulled aside by Kyotu, everyone else was frozen with fear.

She took one step forward, the air around all of us suddenly turned colder than ice, yet it burned worse than any flame ever could. She took another step, the same thing but stronger, and another. I choked thinking she was going to suffocate us before she even killed them.

But no.

For in an instant that pressure was gone. And there she stood, light shining on her right. Her hair looked like pure silk, her eyes deeper then any ocean, her skin was glowing. She was a goddess.

She raised her left hand to her right shoulder, swiftly moving it back to her side. I didn’t even see what happened. But when blood was stained the ground and trees, and various body parts were scattered everywhere it became painfully obvious what she did.

Without another sound her eyes closed and she began to waver, her knees buckled and she fell. I caught her before she could touch the ground.

Lifting her up and cradling her in my arms, I actually felt her figure. Thin but muscular, no hips, no chest, and no butt. But for some reason I liked it. And holding her she felt so fragile, so delicate, yet she fit in my arms perfectly.

Slowly and carefully I carried her over to the others who were still in shock from what just happened, but snapped out of it realizing she needed help.

Ayame’s pov.

I opened my eyes slowly, I had a bad headache. Looking around I saw a little colour, and a blur of purple.

“Zooroo?” I asked.

“Rooooooooo!” He exclaimed.

The tent door opened and everyone came scampering in. Hiei stayed at the door.

“Are you alright?” Botan asked.

“What happened?” I asked trying to sit up only to be pushed back down by Kurama.

“I wouldn’t try to sit up yet.” He told me, “Your wounds might reopen.”

“What happened?” I asked again this time a little more panicked.

“You went in the cave, spent about four days going between yelling and staying silent, some demons came on the fourth day and you killed them along with bringing half the mountain we scaled to pieces.” Hiei said calmly.

“That must have been awesome.” I grinned.

“You had us all worried.” Kyotu said, “What the hell happened to you when you were in the cave anyway?”

I thought for a minute, “A lot of pain.” I said, “I saw my mama, and she said this was the gift she couldn’t have given me while she was alive. Told me to be strong, and don’t give up, told me she loved me. And then the rest is all a blur of pain, burning, searing. It hurt.”

“You’re alright now, but rest up.” Kurama told me.

I nodded, “Thank you guys.” I said.

“I’d like to test that new power of yours when you have a minute.” Yusuke said.

“Get in line, baka.” Kyotu told him, “She needs to defeat Nagiete first.”

“Well, it’s half over.” I said, “I’m gonna try to sleep some more, okay.”

“You rest up, we’ll figure out what we’re going to do next.” Botan told me.

I nodded and started to drift off again. I knew they could handle it.

I woke up I don’t know how much later, but the sun was just starting to rise and Botan and Zooroo were next to me sleeping like two babies.

I grabbed my back pack and exited the tent.

“Were are you going?” I deep voice asked.

“I’m going to change, Hiei, don’t worry.” I told him rubbing my eyes.

“I thought you’d still be asleep.” He said.

“I’ve been sleeping how long?” I asked.

“About a week, I’d say.” He responded.

I nodded, “We’ve stayed in this place long enough.”

I went into the forest a little ways and stood behind a thick tree. There I stripped off my shirt and baggy jeans.

Tight jean short shorts and a baggy sweater replaced them.

“Ayame!” Botan shouted out in no particular direction, “How could you let this happen, Hiei!? She’s injured, and what if she wandered off?!”

“I went to change, geeze, have a heart attack for the whole world why don’t you.” I said and sat down, Zooroo jumping into my lap.

“Wow, you actually look like a girl.” Yusuke told me.

“Tell me something I don’t know.” I hissed running a comb through my mess of hair.

“Well, this is a good morning isn’t it?” Kurama asked coming from the boys tent, “You’re alright now, I assume, Ayame?”

I nodded and pulled on knee-high stripped socks before jaming my feet into my boots.

“Then we can get moving today.” He said.

“Finally.” Yusuke, Kuwrabara, and I said together.

“Can’t sit still, can you?” Botan asked.

“Not if we can help it.” I answered for all of us.

We ate and packed up before heading out. I walked near the back of the group because I still wasn’t feeling so hot. And for some reason, Hiei was with me every step of the way.

I was wondering why, but I didn’t bother to ask. I figured he would think I was bothersome so I just stayed shut up. Besides I liked having him near like that.

We stopped again when the sun was setting, this time along a river.

“By the looks of this map, if we keep going the way that we are, we should arrive in the district some time tomorrow afternoon.” Kurama said as we were all sitting around the fire.

“Then why can’t we keep going like we are now?” Kuwrabara asked, “We’ll make it there by morning.”

“Because baka.” Hiei snarled, “Take it from some one with experience, those woods at night are not the place someone like you would want to be. Demons hunt at night, they will prey on you. And with the onna still not fully ready for the fight we’d be out numbered, over powered, and left for dead.”

“You’re still not fully healed?” Kyotu asked.

“I’m fine,” I said, “It’s just taking me a little while to get used to this new power is all.”

“You should have said something.”

“I’m fine!” I barked, “Now would you stop worrying about me? You aren’t my dad, and you could never be my mom!”

Kyotu only sighed admitting defeat. The rest of the night was quiet.

We walked in silence all of the next morning. And, just as Kurama predicted, we arrived in the afternoon.

Setting up camp on the edge of a river again.

“We’re getting you used to your new power.” Was the only thing Yusuke said before launching a spirit gun attack at me.

I dodged effortlessly, narrowly avoiding the blast and Kurama’s rose whip. Hiei nearly got me with his sword, but I knocked it out of his hand in a second. Sending a kick to his face and having him smash back into a large rock, only to be ambushed by Kuwrabara.

I landed back on the ground and shot straight up driving my fist into his gut sending him flying sky high. I didn’t have very much time to admire my work.

Another blast came and I flipped to avoid it. Kurama’s rose whip wrapped around my ankle sending me down wards. Yusuke aimed to fire, but before he did everything went white.

A giant explosion happened sending everyone back. When things cleared, I was sitting in the middle of a giant cradder.

“Did, I do that?” I asked.

“By the looks of it.” Kurama said coming over to the edge.

“Kurama, I’m so sorry!” I said and scrabbled upwards. He was covered in deep wounds.

“These are nothing, don’t worry about it.” He told me.

I nodded.

“Is everyone else alright?” He asked.

“Remind me never to piss her off again.” Yusuke joked.

“Are you crazy! That could have gotten us killed!” Kuwrabara yelled to him.

“No it wouldn’t have.” I told him.

Everyone paused and turned to me.

“I didn’t have the intent to kill anyone on my mind when I somehow let it go.” I explained, “A least we know I can drag it out when I need too.”

“I’m sure you’ll be fine.” Kurama assured.

I smiled.

There’s that glare again. I thought to myself. I still wanna know who’s doing it.

All of the next day I spent drawing out my new power. I think I managed to do so pretty well.

“Think you’re ready, Ayame?” Kurama asked when I emerged from the tent in white short shorts, dark socks, my boots, and a baggy hoodie.

I nodded, “Ready as I’ll ever be.”

I headed out to find him. I was alone, or that was the plan, but I felt someone following me.

I finally stopped and turned around.

“I know you’re there, come out.” I said.

Hiei stepped out of the shadows of the tree.

“What are you doing here?” I asked him.

“I wanted to be alone with you.” He said.

That was straight forward. I thought.

“Why?” I asked.

He didn’t say anything he just walked up to me, he didn’t even look me in the eye. That made me a little sad. I loved his red eyes.

I shrugged and kept walking. Something was up, but I quickly dismissed every thought that was ever in my head when, Hiei. Held. My. Hand.

I was having a mental spasm.

“Onna.”

“Hai?”

“I talked to the fox the other day, and he told me something.” He said and paused, “Since I saw you I had feelings for you. According to him they’re love. And he said the only way to get rid of them is to tell you. So, onna, I love you.”

My breath was caught in my throat.

I swallowed hard, “I think he lied to you, Hiei.” I finally had something to say.

“What are you talking about?” He demanded.

I swallowed again, “By telling someone you love them, if you do, it doesn’t make those feelings you’re feeling go away. It makes them stronger.”

The grip on my hand tightened a little.

“But,” I said taking back his attention, “They aren’t always bad feelings.”

I knew he was about to question that, so I shut him up by placing my lips on his. It was a little awkward because he was barely five feet, and I was five seven(nine inches for those of you who don’t know).

He tasted like salt and metal. I liked it. But what I loved even more, when he grabbed my hips and pulled my close to him.

I pulled away all too soon.

“I love you too, Hiei.” I breathed and reluctantly pulled away.

I turned around and headed off to where Negeite should have been.

Hiei’s pov.

I stood there dumbfounded. No one had ever told me that they loved me before. And she was perfect.

I swear that girl was made just for me.

She knew what to say, what to do, this air about her.

“Ayame.” I whispered in the wind.

Just her name sounded so right coming from my mouth. And when she said mine, I knew right then, she had to be for me.

“Ayame?” I questioned this time. Wasn’t it a japanese iris? Yes it was.

Now why would a parent name their child with such an ordinary name? Well beyond me. Besides they were human, like she is.

And. . . . . . I’m in love with a human girl.

The sound of a large explosion brought me out of my thoughts. I ran to the source. And sure enough.

Standing tall and proud, slightly winded is besides the point, facing an ugly blob demon.

“Just surrender and your death will be swift.” It cried to her.

“How ’bout you abandon your plans of destroying both the human and spirit worlds and I’ll think about not killing you.” She countered.

A quick witty tongue, I like a woman with sass.

“Die!!!!!!” It yelled.

I wanted to jump in and take the attack for her, but something told me to stay up in this tree.

She deflected it with her right hand, that glob disintegrated a tree twice as large as the one I was in.

She ran full pelt into the demon, she broke through the outer layer of the blobs body and . . . . . . went inside it?

I’m in love with a human baka onna. I thought to myself.

She moved her hands out to either of her sides. For some reason she wasn’t disintegrating. That demon noticed it too.

Before anything else could happen, she performed bloody shower.

She looked around a moment making sure it worked. It was a glob monster, air for that shouldn’t just kill it.

Five minutes, seven minutes, ten minutes, fifteen minutes.

She sighed in relief and looked up at me.

“You just gonna sit there all day or are you gonna come down?” She asked.

I was by her side without a moment’s hesitation.

“Do you know what Ayame means?” I asked her.

She nodded, “Iris. Do you know what iris means?” She asked me.

I shook my head.

“I’m more than one thing.” She said.

“And because of that I somehow love you.” I told her.

“Be glad you’re too cute too hate.” She said and kissed and my cheek before grabbing my hand and leading me away from the mess of a sight.

I didn’t like it, I wrapped an arm around her waist, then picked her up and held her against my body like when she passed out.

I took off jumping through the trees finding a place to rest. And in those moments when she wrapped her arms around my neck and snuggled into my chest, it was perfect.

She was my ayame. My everything.