The cast of rk and the authoress are all sitting on the empty stage from the story with pieces of paper scattered all about then. Kenshin, Kaoru and the rest are skimming through these as the authoress sits at the piano that Kaoru used, picking out a few simple tunes with her index fingers.

Kaoru: So, you're saying that this was just a practice fic?

Selene: Mm hm... ( makes a lame attempt at playing "chopsticks" ) I wanted to see what kind of response I'd get for a "straight" au fic, plus I wanted to try a few ideas as well. This is what I really want to do now. ( tosses a script to Soujiro and Misao )

Soujiro and Misao: ( skim through the document briefly before turning bright red, Misao particularly)

Misao: You want me to WHAT?!

Selene: ( winks ) Don't worry, it's gonna be a lot of fun.

Soujiro: I'll say ( grin )

Misao: Stop taking her side, Sou!

Selene: ( shrugs and switches to "Mary had a little lamb" )

**************************************************************

I don't usually do this, mostly for the reason that "real life" leaves me so dog tired, that when I finish writing chapters to fics I have no energy left to answer you guys individually. Partly for the fact that my foot has made a lovely home for itself in my throat. However, with the response I got, not only for the fic, but also the overwhelming kindness and sympathy shown to me in a time of great need, I thought it was only fair that I make the effort.

And so, here we go...

AnimeKrazy: Maa maa, so many questions! I hope I answered them for you in lucky chapter thirteen.

Briar: Sorry for not updating sooner, I hope I made up for it.

Iluv2readlemons: Cute name. I'm glad both you and your sister enjoyed the story, hope both of you liked the ending too.

Tanya: Sorry about your friend. Unfortunately we aren't the only ones in that boat. I'm glad you liked the story though, I really am.

Juust a visotor: There, I kept it going and I even finished it. Hope you liked the ending.

Wishstar: Thank you. I hope it stayed great till the very end.

Bonessasan: (bows) Domo arrigatou. The quality of the grammatical style may have wavered a bit near the end of chapter thirteen, but chalk that one up to fatigue and not wearing my glasses. Hope you liked it anyway.

Missy: Thanks for the words of comfort. I hope your friend is ok now, I know those bites can scar badly. I have a permanent one on my cheek from when I was little, but thankfully it looks like a dimple now. Best of luck to you both.

IC: I worked hard on picking the songs, so I'm glad you liked at least one of them. Hope you liked the end to the story.

Papaya: First off, I want to send you my own condolences on the loss of your mother. Although I cannot pretend to know how you feel, I can tell you that I cannot even begin to form the thought of losing my own mother, who I fight with on a regular basis, but whom I also love and revere like the Nubian queen that she is. Losing the woman who means most to you cannot be an easy thing to bear, and it is natural for you to take comfort in the fact the rest of us are every bit as vulnerable as you are. You're not selfish dear, you're only as human as the rest of us. I wish you all the best.

Iris: ^^. A thousand pardons for making you wait so long for this chapter. As I've mentioned before, real life is an utter and complete pain. I hope this chappie made up for the wait though.

JamieGirl: Now why would I leave you guys hanging on the edge of oblivion? ^^. Hope you like the ending, I can't help but write happy ones.

Kitten Kisses: (man, you guys have some cute names) 1.5 huh? I can live with that ^_^. Not much stuttering in this chapter, but I hope you liked it all the same.

Evil Bunny: Hm...you are the second person in my entire life to find anything associated with me charming ^^.' (proceeds to feel like a million dollars) Hope you liked this chapter.

Akari Sennyami: Sano is quite delicious isn't he? Personally, I don't like the idea of making him a bullethead in my fics, (a guy can be pretty and smart darnit!) so to make up I made him a bilingual, college graduate billionare! ^___^. Hope you liked how things turned out for him in the end.

RK-128: Aw....you're too sweet Knowing that you've enjoyed the story so far is thanks enough for me, I hope the ending was ok though. I was a little paranoid it wouldn't measure up ^^.'

Varina: (breathes a sigh of relief) Glad you liked the story so far, the perfectionist in me takes great relief in your vote of non-crappiness ^^. I managed to fight off the "joys of adulthood" long enough to churn this last chapter out. Hope you liked it. (chews nails and prays that  it was ok)

Anime Lover: There you are, the last chapter, hope I didn't make you wait too long ^^'

DragonWolf: (offers a hanky and a gentle pat on the back) There, there, love. I didn't mean to dredge up unpleasant feelings like that, then again, I've found a good cry to be the best medicine for a lot of things. For whatever comfort you gained from what I wrote, I'm the one who should be grateful, because it shows that my efforts aren't in vain. I hope that one day you'll get to see your grandma again, she sounds like she was an awesome lady.

Cleaclaudia: Hope the net didn't give you trouble for too long. (grins at the words "you rock") Thanks. Hope this chapter was up to par.

Vesca: Aw...ya mean it? The truth is I'm hardly ever completely satisfied with what I write, I'm my own worst critic ^^.' Hope you liked this chapter.

Tesuka-chan: I debated over the choice of songs here for a really long time, so I'm glad that you liked the choices I made. I'm not 100% sure about the ones I used in this chapter but...I'll let you guys be the judge of that. Glad you liked the story and hope the ending wasn't too dissapointing.

Aimi-chan: Now how could I lose inspiration with great readers like you? Glad you liked my very first au fic and I hope the ending was up to par -_^.

Nemo: Nope, I don't play any instruments. I do sing sometimes, but I think the only person that likes the sound of that is me ^^.''' There's a lot of guesswork that goes into writing the performance scenes since quite frankly, I don't know a thing about music, its all just a stretch of the imagination. I'm glad you liked the descriptions and  stuff, hope the ones in this chapter were just as enjoyable as the last.

Mirage: Break up the rooster and the fox? No force in heaven or earth can do such a thing and I'm not willing to try. Hope you liked how things turned out for them in the end.

Card Mistress Sakura: You came back to check every day? Now I feel awful for making you wait so long. I hope this chapter can make up for my transgression ^^.

Prudence-chan: You hit the nail on the head. I love the idea of "everybody wins" and I very much wanted that to be a part of this chapter from the very beginning. I hope you like the way things turned out.

Child-of-the-owl: I'm feeling a lot better now thanks. I'm glad you liked my original character Leyna, with a son like Sano I figured she had to be one very special lady. Hope you liked the last installment.

Silent Teardrops: Glad you liked the story, I hope the ending was ok.

Innocent Dreamer: Thanks. I hope the wait wasn't too long, hope you liked the way that it ended.

Duece of Spades: Glad I appealed to your national pride -_^. I'm of mixed descent myself, I used to think it was a pain but now I take a lot of pleasure when I catch people staring and trying to figure my lineage out. Besides, mixed people tend to be pretty cute, don't you agree? ^^. Hope you liked the story's ending.

ZenryokuZ: (offers a membership to the Sakabatou fan-club) ^^. I'm glad that you appreciate the fact that I tried to do some exploring with my characters personalites. I get a little tired of fics that take the predictable route myself, so I try not to commit the same sin. Hope you liked how this one turned out.

Princess Amelia: (blush) Thanks for the compliment. Hope you liked the way things ended for the two bands.

Chibi-dragongirl: (smiles) You're right, time does help the healing process....a lot. I'm better now thank you, out of debt and no longer angry at the world for what was done.....well....maybe just a little. I'm really glad you liked the story and I hope you enjoyed the ending. And again, thank you.

Chitchat: Sano is too cute to belong to just one country, isn't he? Hope you liked the final battle of the bands, I just put in what I would like to see in a real-life concert between my favorite performers so I really hope you enjoyed it.

Gemin16: There you go. The final battle of the bands, signed, sealed and delivered. Hope you didn't wait too long -_^.

Lebluphoenix: Hope you liked my choice of songs, there are a few others that I was tempted to try out but I picked what I thought was the best for you guys ^^.

Girl: Me? Funny? Nah. Glad you liked the story.

Tonya: Glad you enjoyed the fic, while the romance wasn't all fluffy, gooey, sweet, I hope that what was written was just as enjoyable. Thanks for reading.

Jason.M.Lee: Hey, Chou can be nice, just look what he did for Kamatari at the end of the Kyoto Arc. (looks to see a couple dozen swords flying her way) Ok I take that back. Hope you liked the conclusion.

Chibi-Nikoru: This is one of your favorites? (beams) Domo arigatou! I hope it was worth the wait.

Sharai Darekin: Updated as quickly as I could, hope it wasn't too long a wait.

Psyrk: Well, I would not consider this the best au fic I know of, but I'm glad that you liked it all the same.

Tatsumaki: Lol. Love your email address -_^. I'm flattered that you find great strength in my character, but whatever you see is a direct result of me having the right kind of people around me and wanting to strive to be more like them. The friend that I lost was strong, and I wanted to be strong like him. That's what gave me the fortitude to keep writing, I'm glad that you're glad that I did.

Rogue-solus: Well, now you know Kenshin's reasons for being in the competition, hope they didn't come out too corny. Thanks for reading.

Argentum Draco: You're welcome, you're welcome, you're welcome! I'm sure you're relieved that the wait is over, thanks for reading.

Aku-chan: Do you really think I'd leave the hottie of hotties out of this one? No chance!

Momori: Well, it's over now. Hope you like the way things turned out.

EVERYONE: Thank you so much for giving my silly little fic the time of day.

Tookamiemitame. All of you.