|Accidents and Aftermath
Author: Dreaming of Everything PM
When Hiei is poisoned, causing temporary insanity, he severely wounds Botan, who's now comatose, hovering on the brink of death. This fic is a series of onesided conversations between the two as Hiei deals with his own self and the aftermath. HB. COMPLETERated: Fiction T - English - Romance/Suspense - Hiei & Botan - Chapters: 13 - Words: 38,948 - Reviews: 166 - Favs: 53 - Follows: 33 - Updated: 10-08-07 - Published: 09-11-05 - Status: Complete - id: 2576133
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Accidents and Aftermath (working title)
Chapter 1: Guilt
A/N: I find inspiration in the oddest places.
I hope you all enjoy this!
Disclaimer: I do not own Yu Yu Hakusho and any and all related characters and events. I do not own Sarah Louise Adrien. I do not own Rosette Christopher or any people/events related to Chrono Crusade. I do not own Robert Frost or his poems. I do not own Saiyuki. I do not own Fullmetal Alchemist. I do not own this computer, fanfic dot net and the Internet. I do not own the world in part or whole. I hereby disclaim everything recognizable in this fic and otherwise. Sue me now!
All 'quotes' don't actually exist and were written entirely and only by me.
The poison I use as a plot device is entirely fictional and had never appeared in any book, movie, legend, anime, manga or fanfiction that I am aware of.
It was supposed to be a simple, routine mission: go in, beat a bunch of demons to a bloody pulp, get out and go home happy.
Nobody had been prepared for what had happened.
True, they were a bunch of lower-class demons that should have been no problem whatsoever. True, there were no unusual problems with the spirit detectives. However, it was also true that they were a rather more intelligent batch of lower-class demons than they regularly encountered.
The problems started with an elaborate batch of traps, cleverly hidden and ended with an attempt to poison Hiei.
Some of the traps were successful; some weren't. They were merely an annoyance, no matter what.
The attempt to poison Hiei was very successful indeed. It was anything but an annoyance.
The Jagan is both an extremely powerful weapon and a weakness; once it is mastered the strengths easily compensate for the flaw in the bodys' defenses, at least for the most part.
--Demonology, Author Unknown
There is a certain Makai poison that is scentless, invisible and insubstantial; a clear gas heavier than air, there is no way to detect it easily. In large quantities known to cause madness. Very few are even aware of its existence. Attracted to supernatural energy, including demonic, the poison cannot enter any demon because of natural defenses. There is an exception to this as well: an implanted Jagan, not a part of the natural body, is easily breached by the foreign substance...
--Guide to the Dangers of Makai, volume 37c part II, by S. L. Adrien. (1)
...symptoms of this variety of poisoning may include dizziness, fainting spells, an interruption of the bodies' natural healing abilities, a weakening of the muscles, nausea and, in some cases, bursts of spirit energy that can be utilized by the patient...
--The Reikai Healer's Manual: An Instruction Book by and For Diagnosing and Healing Ferry Girls by Rosette Christopher (2)
As they maneuvered around (or, in Botan's case, above,) the traps lining the trail, instincts were going haywire throughout the entire group. Kuwabara especially, with his strong sixth sense, had the feeling that something was utterly and completely wrong; surprisingly, Botan was a close second.
"I feel all... Jangly..." muttered the girl. "And... sort of... dizzy?"
Kurama, the only one to over hear her comment, looked worriedly at her. "Botan? Are you okay?"
"Botan?" repeated Kurama, with a little more urgency.
The deity landed carefully, her oar dematerializing. She swayed slightly, hit by a sudden wave of dizziness.
"...Something's wrong..." she whispered. She was having trouble standing still, and now she felt almost like she was going to pass out...
"Has she been poisoned?" asked Yusuke. "But I feel fine... And why would someone try to poison Botan?"
A sudden scraping noise made them turn; they were surprised to find Hiei, wild-eyed, clutching at his drawn sword, his breath coming hard.
"...Hiei?" asked Kurama, turning the single word into a question.
And then all Hell broke loose.
A sudden swarm of demons seemed to materialize out of the surrounding forest, attacking the group. As was previously mentioned, they were all lower-class demons, generally speaking not a problem.
However, with the surrounding traps, the enclosed space and the fact that the attackers had no qualms about attacking their own, they were hampered. Yusuke was unable to use his reigun in such close quarters, ditto Kurama's rose whip, and Hiei was still in a weird state, unable to fight at all; Botan and Hiei both needed protecting, another stumbling block.
Despite all the setbacks it was going fairly well, the three able fighters cleaving their way through the demons. However...
Yusuke turned in time to see Hiei rise, sword in hand, a strange burning fire in his eyes. He watched, horrified, unable to move fast enough, as Hiei blurred into movement, (He recovered so quickly...) started to move towards Kurama, (Maybe he was going to help?) his sword biting deep into Botan's side (She was in his way... Her blood so red...) as he attacked the kitsune; Kurama dodged the blade, hit away a minor demon who still persisted in attacking him, jumped to the side just quickly enough to miss another slash from the half-koorime...
A reigun blast, one without enough intensity to kill, hit the fire demon, knocking him out. Kurama hurried to Botan's side, attempted to staunch the flow of blood; as he worked his plants quickly tied up Hiei, holding him helpless. While he was busy Yusuke and Kuwabara quickly, brutally and efficiently disposed of their remaining attackers.
Once their area of forest had been cleared of demons the three aware members of the group gathered.
"We have no way to get back," pointed out Kurama. "Botan's unconscious."
"And what do we do with Hiei?" asked Yusuke, looking at his (also unconscious) bound body.
"Take him to Koenma, I suppose..." said Kurama. His betrayal had been a blow to everyone, even those he professed to hate: he had so much as told Kuwabara that he didn't switch sides once he had decided which he was on.
Kuwabara looked around. "Let's at least carry 'em back to where the portal was..." he said, looking at the dead bodies flung around the area.
Botan slowly opened her eyes, barely conscious, as they came into the clearing. A strange buzzing energy seemed to fill her, for some reason; it hurt, though... It felt almost like she could do anything.
"Botan?" said Yusuke.
"Botan, could you get us back to Reikai?" asked Kurama gently.
Koenma looked up in horror as Botan fell onto his office floor from a portal, unconscious again and frighteningly pale. Behind her came in Kurama, Kuwabara and Yusuke, dazed and shaken. Yusuke was carrying an equally ill-looking Hiei, still knocked out and bound tightly.
"What happened?" gasped out the ruler of Reikai.
"They need medical attention," said Kurama.
"Oh! Yes! Right! George!"
"...Hiei did that? No..."
Yusuke had never expected the fire demon to turn on them like that. Attack anyone... He had been their friend, damnit, he had trusted him with his life more than once... And now Botan was badly hurt because of him...
"Poison? What?" said Koenma, looking up, startled.
"Yes, Sir," said the ogre tiredly. He had been trying to get him to pay attention to him for five minutes, now. "Traces of a rare Makai poison was found in the bloodstreams of both Hiei and Botan."
"Why only them?" frowned the Prince of Reikai.
"I was about to explain, Sir. The poison, a gas, would normally be repelled by the bodys' defenses, but Botan's time as a human and Hiei's Jagan negated those protective layers. The poison was able to penetrate into the body."
"Well, that explains why they're both still out cold after a day and a half."
"It's particularly bad for Botan; the poison on top of her wound has put her into an extremely dangerous state. Her condition is very unstable right now, Sir."
"And what do you know about what happened to Hiei?"
"The poison is known to cause temporary insanity in demons. We're flushing it from his bloodstream—hopefully we'll finish before he regains consciousness—and he should be fine once the purifying process is finished."
There was a sigh of deep relief from Koenma. Hate to confess it though he did, he had relied on Hiei, and on Kuwabara, Kurama and Yusuke, who relied on the moody demon in return.
"You heard?" said Yusuke to Kurama; they were waiting in the hospital area of Reikai for Hiei to regain consciousness.
"I heard," said the boy with a sigh. "It's... A mixed set of feelings."
"It's nice to know it wasn't Hiei who attacked you and Botan," said Yusuke plainly. "Or at least not a rational Hiei."
"Do you know what kinds of Hell this is going to cause in him?" said Kurama, just as blunt.
"What..." began Yusuke.
Kurama continued. Obviously he needed someone to vent to.
"I'm worried about how this will affect Hiei. You know how he is. Always so critical of where he could do better... And you can see it in how he cares for Yukina, the moments when he shares his devotion to his friends. He will blame himself for this. For hurting Botan."
Yusuke knew it was true.
Hiei regained awareness slowly.
A small murmur escaped his lips as he drifted back into consciousness. He instinctively reached for his sword—he was waking up in a strange area, after all—and moved into a strange form of panic as he found he was tied down, with both his Jagan and he himself heavily warded.
Kurama and Yusuke hurried over as they noticed Hiei's attempt to reach his sword, which had actually been removed.
"Hiei?" asked Kurama as they approached him, careful to stay outside of the wardings that had been placed around the bed.
"Where am I?"
"You're in the Reikai hospital ward," said Kurama carefully.
Memories slowly trickled back into his mind. He had suddenly 'blanked out,' he remembered...
And then been struck with an insatiable urge to kill; he flung himself at Kurama, the closest of the near-by powerful opponents. He swung out at Botan, a mere distraction between him and Kurama; his concentration was focused solely on the upcoming fight. Now, as he re-watched the scene happen, he could see the ferry girl collapse, bleeding heavily, shock and horror and fear stamped onto her features.
And then he was fighting him, or rather, he was trying to kill him while he dodged, before Yusuke hit him a reigun, a last desperate measure. And then everything was the black infinity of unconsciousness...
A harshly drawn-in breath tore through his throat as a painful sigh. "... I killed Botan...!"
"She's alive," interjected Yusuke. "Oh, the doctor says we can take these down now." He quickly dismantled the wardings that been placed in case Hiei woke up still homicidal, while Kurama untied the fire demon and handed him his sword.
"How serious is it?" said the fire demon, careful to keep his voice and face glacial.
"At this point... We don't know if she'll live. The wound was fairly deep and she took in a lot of the poison... They can't heal her because of interference from her own white magic, and they can't flush the poison from her system like they did with you because of the delicacy of her state."
Hiei froze inside. Another death, and all his fault... No, Botan's death, with only him to take the blame...
"If you want, I'll show you to her..." said Kurama quietly.
Hiei followed behind the 'fox' down the hallway, subdued and silent even for him. Never a big talker, he was silent as the grave; it was almost as if his entire presence had sunk in on itself, reduced.
The room was relatively small, very bare and utilitarian; carefully constructed wards designed to protect, feed and watch over Botan were carefully carved into the wood; further protective measures, written on paper, were carefully pasted around the room. A single plain chair, made of hard, utilitarian wood, stood next to the bed, obviously placed for visitors.
Botan herself lay on the bed, a thin cotton sheet pulled over her form; someone had replaced her torn, bloody clothes with clean ones. She was disturbingly still, her only movement the steady and slight rise and fall of her breath.
"I'll leave you alone," said Kurama, tactfully withdrawing. Hiei heard and logged the words subconsciously at best, his entire mind full of conflicting emotions and an overwhelming, struggling guilt.
The silence was a heavy weight pressing down on the two. It was nearly tangible, thickening the heavy air.
Hiei, still standing by the now-closed door, slowly walked over to the head of Botan's bed, standing to the side of it and looking down on her solemn face.
She looks so serious, severe... thought Hiei. Ironic how her personality, the opposite of serious, was what I hated most about her. Now he ignored the part of him wishing that she was once more there and giggling, laughing, making stupid comments, getting in the way, being a bother.
The silence was thick, heavy, uncomfortable. Unnatural...
Words sprang unbidden to his lips.
"I've killed more people than you and Koenma have ever guessed at. I've been responsible for so many deaths over the years that I've lost count. And I never cared, you know. It was just the way things were. The way things should be. The strong, the predators, defeating the weak prey, and I was always strongest.
"And then I wasn't. Yusuke defeated me, and then I was ordered into helping him as a spirit detective. I was working with other people... Next we found Yukina, and it was my duty to watch over her. I grew... attached...
"I always hated you, you know. You're useless. Pointless. No reason for your existence. So why should I feel guilty that you're nearing a second death? I should be happy that one more annoyance will never bother me again. I should be happy, congratulating myself that I rid the world of a useless pest and won't get thrown into Reikai jail for it.
"I am not... unhappy about it.
"Why am I so guilty?"
The silence continued to choke the room, continuing as if Hiei had never spoken. Botan lay unmoving, unaware. Everything was exactly as it had been. Unmoving. Unchanging. Endless.
(1) S. L. Adrien is the main character from the truly wonderful Sarah fics by InterNutter, who is my fanfiction goddess. The S. L. is for Sarah Louise.
(You either get this one or you don't. Please ignore me. If you really really need to know you have no life. Not that that matters. Ask me in a review and/or email or look it up on Google. Reviews are easier and make me happier.)
A/N: I know SOMEBODY's going to think this is out of character. .:cowers:. Please don't flame? It's sad to see a fanficcer tremble. I have self-esteem issues as it is.
This is a determined plea for reviews. Please? Like I said: self-esteem issues. On some level I know I'm a pretty decent writer but my subconscious has trouble with that idea. I'm putting myself on the proverbial silver platter, complete with a sign saying 'Please devour me alive.' It plays havoc with my nerves and I don't need these issues as school starts up again. .:keels over and dies:.
Plus I absolutely adore long rambling reviews that go nowhere, constructive criticism and people. Please review! I'm begging you here!