|Perceptions and Misconceptions
Author: slr2moons PM
Jin is resigned and Fuu upset when Mugen returns from a shopping errand. He has neither the food nor the money, he reeks of something rather suspicious, and he’s very pissed off.Rated: Fiction T - English - Drama/Humor - Words: 1,219 - Reviews: 5 - Favs: 3 - Published: 09-09-07 - Status: Complete - id: 3775283
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Warning: Rated PG-13 for language and adult themes.
Disclaimer: Obviously I am not Watanabe-san, and alas, I do not have permission to write this. I would be grateful if you didn't press charges. Thank you.
Perceptions and Misconceptions
The sound of Mugen's metal-plated geta slamming into the ground with each step heralded his return from the closest town. Alerted by the noise, Jin rose from the fallen tree trunk where he had been resting, and Fuu darted over to stand near him. He glanced down at her, and she gave him a bewildered and worried look in response.
Mugen appeared around the bend in the road, his tense walk more than enough to portray his mood, even without the stomping feet. When Jin could see his features, one of the ronin's eyebrows twitched, and he quietly sighed. Fuu squinted for a better look at Mugen herself, then yelped and immediately hid behind Jin.
When he reached the pair, Mugen stopped. The sight of Jin gazing at him with resignation and Fuu almost shivering behind only pissed him off more. "Fuck you both!" he snarled and stormed past them down the road.
Jin felt Fuu flinch. They cautiously turned to watch Mugen stomp away. The sharp cracks of his metal-plated geta impacting the ground as he stalked reverberated in their ears. As the breeze of his motion reached them, Fuu curiously sniffed.
"Hey, Jin. Do you smell that?"
Jin tested the air himself. "Hmmmm. Perfume."
"A woman's perfume." Fuu emphasized a gag. "And he reeks of it."
The girl blinked up at a very resigned Jin, who was gazing at Mugen's retreating form, then jolted in shock. "He did NOT!" She pushed away from the ronin to dart after Mugen, her sandals slapping the hard-packed earth of the road, her face furious.
Jin sighed and rubbed his temple. Somehow, he knew this was not going to end well.
"Mugeeeeen!!" Fuu yelled.
He kept stomping.
"Where's the mochi you were supposed to buy?!" Fuu caught up to him and grabbed his sleeve. She yanked it, hard. "Well?!"
With a sharp jerk, he pulled his sleeve from her grasp and lengthened his stride.
Fuu made a frustrated noise and increased her own pace, trotting alongside him. This close to Mugen, the perfume's scent was extremely intense. And the panting from her sprint and yelling only made it seem stronger. Her dark voice cut through the air. "You went to a brothel, didn't you." Her tone made the question an accusation.
Mugen's lip curled.
"Why would you do that?! That money was for our dinner! And breakfast tomorrow!" Her voice rose in passion. "Why do you act so stupid about women?!"
He suddenly halted, fists clenched, glaring at nothing.
Fuu scooted in front of him, forcing him to look at her, and glared back.
Jin warily halted a few paces away and eyed the pair. Mugen towered over the girl, the veins and tendons in his arms standing out in his fury. Her frame completely straight, Fuu faced him, her own small fists clenched in anger. Indeed, the animosity that crackled between them was almost palpable. Jin expected them to start growling and circling each other at any moment.
Jin's eyes flicked from one to the other. Fuu would never admit the real reason she was angry. She was so livid, her tiny frame actually shook with each furious heartbeat.
"Don't deny it, Mugen! You reek of perfume!"
Fuu's eyes suddenly dropped from his face and sharpened. "Oh! What's this?!" She shot a hand up and grabbed his red shirt to jerk him half a step towards her. She delicately sniffed the slight stain that covered it. Her face ominously brightened. "She dumped it over you!" Fuu began to snigger. "I bet all the money went to waste!! What could you do to upset a brothel woman that much?!" Her laughter increased to outright guffaws.
"Piss off, Fuu." His face completely black, Mugen shoved her aside and stomped ahead, bumping into her and knocking her back a few paces. His obvious frustration only made Fuu laugh harder.
She swiped at the tears on her face with a sleeve of her kimono. "That stench is going to last for days, Mugen!" Her evil glee hardened. "It's a fitting punishment for you."
Jin sighed. Obviously, she was not going to let the matter drop, and Mugen seemed dangerously close to snapping. "Fuu--" he reached to touch the girl's shoulder, but she brushed him away and stepped out of arm's reach.
Her cold voice serious, she shouted after the man, "Why waste our money on a woman, Mugen? Why, when I'm right here?!"
Mugen whirled and shot at them, drawing his straight sword in a blurred motion. Fuu barely had time to yelp at the attack before he swerved away from her and viciously struck at Jin instead.
His katana already drawn, Jin blocked the strike and made a sharp attack of his own, forcing Mugen to leap away from Fuu. The two halted, Mugen glaring at him, Jin silently watching in return. The ronin's serious face was still, and his eyes were wide in preparation for battle.
They stared each other down. Both ignored Fuu, who was frozen behind Jin with her hands clapped to her mouth in shock.
Jin kept his gaze level, his eyes never wavering from Mugen's. In a calm, even voice, he spoke. "Fuu, I do not think you know of what you speak."
She softly gasped.
"And Mugen...you need to get laid."
Mugen's mouth twisted into a dark smile. He relaxed his stance and sheathed his sword. "What the fuck do you think I was trying to do?"
Relaxing himself, Jin returned his own blade to its sheath. He tried not to sigh when Fuu ran from around him and flung herself at Mugen, bapping his chest with her small fists.
"You jerk! What's that supposed to mean?!"
Mugen scowled and scratched the back of his head. He grabbed Fuu's arm and shoved her away, holding her at arm's length as they resumed walking down the road.
She prized at his fingers with her own. "But more importantly, what about our food?!"
The sound of her anguished wail caused Jin to massage his temple again.
The two began to squabble, Mugen cursing with his face cut by the return of his scowl, and Fuu bapping his chest once more.
Jin sighed, closed his eyes in resignation, and stepped forward to force them apart. They made faces at each other around him as they walked down the road. Jin did his best to ignore their behavior, something he'd become rather skilled at doing.
Food was just a convenient excuse for the girl, that wasn't what this was about at all. But damned if Jin would say anything. Things between her and Mugen were volatile enough already. As for Mugen...Mugen refused to see Fuu as anything but an annoyance. And given the man's past and present issues, Jin considered that a good thing.
For all three of them.
(completed 9-5-07, last tweaked 9-9-07)