I was putting together ideas for a future KHR fic, when I made the stupid and rookie mistake of trying to apply logic to the plot. Never do this – love this anime to pieces, but it doesn't even try to mesh with reality.
Anyway, I got to thinking about Bianchi and Reborn as an actual couple, and in trying to figure out how the hell that could actually work…this came forth, and has now become my head canon for Bianchi/Reborn. A good chunk of which had to be rewritten when I discovered that instead of being Dino's age, Bianchi is only seventeen. SEVENTEEN! I honestly thought she was in her 20's... (see above for the whole logic/reality issue)
Warning: There is attempted rape in this fic.
Mafia Ever After
Bianchi becomes acutely aware that she's not like other Mafia princesses when she's thirteen.
To be fair, she'd known she wasn't like other Mafia princesses since she was a little girl. Other Mafia princesses generally didn't have body counts that correlated with their Home Economics grade, but this was something else.
Ever since she was little, she'd been read the stories of the white knight and Prince Charming coming to rescue the princess and live happily ever after. She loved them dearly, and wished that she would get her prince charming to come save her.
Then she began bleeding, and was given The Talk, which soured those stories. Her teacher's would soothe and insist on how natural it was, but Bianchi was disgusted.
What kind of Prince Charming did that to their princess?
And then there was childbirth…even the thought brought her into cold sweat. Perhaps she was broken, finding the concept of killing men far more comfortable than the idea of bringing one to life, but it was facts in her head that refused to realign.
Her family merely insisted she was a late bloomer, that she'd understand one day when she met the right person. Bianchi however, doubts it. It's certainly not because she can't understand attraction -she is noticing the boys circling her home becoming men, she just doesn't feel the need for more. She's never struggled to understand anything that's been taught to her, and the idea that these strangers would know her own body better than she does is laughable.
It becomes a project for her, to explain her lack of desire even as she reaches the age of consent and watches her fellow junior Mafioso embrace their sexuality. The answer finally appears in a medical journal, pilfered from Trident Shamal on one of his visits updating her parents on Hayato's wellbeing.
Someone who does not experience sexual attraction, Asexual. The reason she can want a romantic relationship and do all of the wonderful things that come with having a Prince Charming, just without the sex.
Unfortunately, she is an asexual woman in the mafia. And for women in the mafia, that is Not. An. Option. Certainly, woman can become hitmen, and even bosses depending on the currents heirs, but in general, a female is expected to marry into another family, or bring in a male to run their own. They create unions, and bring forth the next generation. Ever after's don't necessarily include 'happily.'
When she turns fifteen and her father starts bringing over the sons of prominent business partners to meet her, she decides to pull a Hayato and get out of Rome…
Becoming a hitwoman is laughably easy. Even as a child her poison cooking gained her a reputation, and getting pretty faces near food supplies is hardly a challenge. Mafia law is still relatively archaic – she gets away with a lot more just because the average Mafioso doesn't think a woman is a threat, least of all a teenager with pink hair.
Eventually though, her reputation begins to precede her, and doing work incognito becomes harder and harder. Her contacts decide the only way to solve the issue is to try some group hits. It's not Bianchi's first choice, but she can't deny that she has a very specific skill set, and additional support would give her far more options.
The first time is a disaster. Her colleagues are young, male…and sexist. They complete the job, but only 3 of them walk out alive, and her two fellow hitman point blank refuse to work with her again. The second time, her partners are older, and include another female. It goes far better, and Bianchi keeps them all on her contact list.
Then, she's contracted to work with Reborn…
She's heard of the World's Greatest Hitman of course. What Mafioso hasn't? He'd gone into a period of seclusion not long after she was born, after receiving the title of Arcobaleno, but had returned to active duty a few years ago. There was a job specifically requesting a young female hitman, and Reborn had requested her.
Had it been anyone else, she would have refused. But Reborn was a legend, and how could she pass up a chance to meet with an Arcobaleno?
And credit where credit was due, Reborn was nothing but professional. The curse had crippled him when it came to obscurity, and he was still putting together identities and disguises to work around it, so when he needed a quick in and out, he used his actual appearance to his advantage. Who suspects a teenage mother? Especially when the hit is performed and the woman has an iron clad alibi?
(Never worked on Mafioso admittedly, but civilians never failed to fall for it).
As such, he needed the woman to be comfortable with him, and since most of his female contacts had 'history', Bianchi was perfect. He was polite, charming and with the exception of kissing her hand at their first meeting, didn't touch her, even as she walked through the airport holding him close to her chest.
The mission goes off without a hitch, and Reborn takes her out to celebrate in a classy restaurant that's 'in the know' and doesn't balk at giving a baby wine. Their conversation spreads from politics to assassination techniques to Bianchi's adorable baby brother who is trying to strike it out on his own (which is news to Bianchi – apparently Reborn and Shamal are close and the doctor's been giving the hitman regular updates in the form of rants). The Arcobaleno is by far the most fascinating and well lived person Bianchi has ever met, and she rather loathes going their separate ways.
Turns out Reborn is satisfied with Bianchi's work too, as over the few months, she works with him on half a dozen hits, often as his motherly beard, but sometimes right by his side with a poison pizza or providing support. After each hit, Reborn never fails to take her out on what could easily be described as a date – dinner out, tickets to the opera, once even a horse drawn carriage (although to be fair, that had been more of a getaway – it wasn't like their target was going to be using it), and she's grown to look forward to them. She's almost certain that Reborn gets some satisfaction from them too, though she's not sure why a man of his reputation would voluntarily be pleasuring a rookie mafiosa in her teens when he could be out enticing far more seasoned women.
It's after their fourth hit, that Bianchi finally understands. The mission had taken them to some gloriously expensive little seaside resort with a mafia exclusive clientele, and the two of them are relaxing at a hotel bar overlooking the pool, when acquaintances of Reborn make their appearance.
The Carcassa family are in town, and have been rising in popularity due to a recent acquisition. They've recently ensnared one of the other Arcobaleno into service. According to Reborn though, his 'no good lackey' Skull, is by far the weakest of the Arcobaleno, and was the only one not involved in the mafia before the curse. Bianchi gets the feeling Reborn's actually rather impressed that Skull has managed to survive and adapt as well as he has, but doesn't know how to show it.
Regardless, Skull and his flunkies are here to celebrate an invasion that went spectacularly well under Skulls leadership, when the cloud realises his pacifier is glowing. He quickly locates Reborn, and joins them at the bar.
What follows is what Bianchi learns is a typical Skull-meets-Reborn interaction. Skull is sloppy, overdramatic, completely unsuited for his position, and knows it. Reborn meanwhile, seems to have taken to the curse with the same poise and grace he has taken everything in life, and both grate on the other without even trying. They are the kind of people, had they not been cursed with the same fate, would have never interacted with each other, and have been happier for it.
It all comes to a head when Bianchi is brought into the conversation. When Skull questions her presence, Reborn introduces her as his new partner. Skull jerks back in shock.
Reborn cocks an eyebrow. "My mission partner. Some jobs are easier with backup. You should know this lackey."
The insult is probably meant to end the conversation, so Reborn seems unsettled when Skull instead snickers.
"Ohhh, right" he giggles. "S-sorry S-Sempai, but when you said 'partner' I thought you meant lover."
The men behind him start snickering themselves, and Bianchi is half expecting Reborn to scoff, to tilt his hat and brush off the other Arcobaleno's actions. So she's more than a little surprised when his only actions are clenched fists and gritted teeth. The reason hits her like a freight train.
Reborn might have been a lady killer once, but with the Arcobaleno curse in place, he physically can't. He can wine and dine and sweet talk and be the utter gentleman Bianchi has come to admire, but anything else is impossible, and these men are taking this tiny chip in his armour to feel better about themselves.
A wicked smile comes to her lips. Well, she can hardly let that stand.
"What's so surprising about that?" she says, gently picking Reborn up and cradling him in her lap. His head turns, watching her in equal parts curiosity and confusion. She merely wraps her arms around his tiny body and curves her ample chest (that has often made her appear older than she is) over him, smirking at the other infant watching her.
"I assure you Reborn is very satisfying" she purrs, pride glowing as the men turn red and splutter, while Skull's jaw drops. "I've never had better."
It's not even a lie. Reborn is the best partner she's ever had. It's not her fault they're taking it to mean something else entirely.
As hoped, the men and Arcobaleno are no longer mocking, but instead looking at Reborn with something akin to awe. Reborn, never slow on the uptake, merely cocks his fedora down and grins.
"Never underestimate me lackey"
He then jumps from Bianchi's grip and kicks Skull over his men, sending him crashing into the pool.
They never actually sit down and hash down the details, but a silent agreement is made. Bianchi will act as Reborn's lover, and Reborn will treat her as one would any lady. It's an agreement that satisfies both of them, and has the added bonus of making Bianchi completely untouchable. Nobody even questions the logistics – and no man, not even her father, is going to tempt fate by trying to organise a match with Reborn's latest flame. It doesn't even require any acting – Bianchi genuinely adores Reborn, and Reborn finds her company and level of intimacy highly desirable, regardless of her age. He confides in her one night, while she holds him close in their shared bed, that it has been nearly two decades since a woman felt comfortable enough to act as Bianchi does. Even mafia woman, morals skewed as they are and knowing that he's not, balk at being intimate - in any form - with an infant.
The Poison Scorpion (a title she picked up not long after partnering with Reborn that she enjoys immensely) merely scoffs and holds him tighter, muttering that most woman clearly have no taste or sense. She feels the hitman smile, head curled into her neck.
His name is Dino Cavallone, heir to the dying Cavallone family, and Reborn's responsibility when he's not out confirming his title.
It was a favour to an old friend – Dino's father had helped Reborn hide when the curse first came to be, and Dino needed a miracle if he was to keep the family standing. Reborn, heart as black as it was, had never left a debt unpaid.
However, Dino is getting ready to inherit, which means he needs full time care, and that for the foreseeable future, he wouldn't be available for contract hits. He breaks the news to Bianchi over dessert. She's not elated, but the Poison Scorpion has come into her own, and is more than capable of working solo. It's been a whirlwind 6 months. Doesn't mean she doesn't test the current holder of Reborn's attention with a few poisoned pastries just to make sure he's worth the effort, but Reborn knows that's just because she cares.
It's not quite the same, only meeting with Reborn in his free time rather than being constantly at his side, but Bianchi adjusts. Eventually, she starts putting out tenterhooks for additional partners, when she realises she misses the camaraderie Reborn provided.
Some of her older partners are dead, others reply, and she also gets rookies testing the waters. She decides to take a risk when her contacts recommend a teen from a budding familia with a good rep.
His name is Romeo. He's thin and lanky, with curly hair and dark eyes, and kisses her hand when they meet.
The two of them do a few hits and definitely work well together. The problem arrives after the hits – they go their separate ways, but Romeo has a tendency to call her up afterwards and invite her out. It's clearly a request for a date, and Bianchi can't help but flounder – it's been a long time since she's had to handle this kind of request.
She ends up calling Reborn, who is surprisingly quiet on the phone, before telling her to go if she wants to – what they have is an arrangement and she's more than capable of handling herself if he doesn't understand no. With him working such a full time job, nobody would be surprised if the younger Bianchi decided cast her net again.
There's cracking coming through, as if Reborn is somehow holding the phone tight enough to break the plastic, but Bianchi dismisses it as static on the line.
She decides to take up Romeo's invitation, and continues to do so. After several months, they're more likely to see each other off a job than they are on one. Their hit styles aren't the greatest of meshes, but their personalities work well outside.
Romeo's also fully accepting of her relationship limits, backing off after the first time. Over the next few months he tests the waters, and always backs off when told without complaint.
For the first time since she left home, Bianchi thinks she might have found her happily ever after.
Nine months into the relationship, and Bianchi is cursing that phrase while kicking the corpse at her feet.
Mafioso are a naturally suspicious lot, it comes with the territory. It takes months, sometimes years, to drop your guard around strangers, even those that become family. Bianchi was no different, but after almost a year with Romeo, she'd started to falter. Started to trust whatever he handed her, the words that he said.
How her teachers must be laughing at her, she thinks as she gets dressed and starts dialling a number on her phone.
She'll give her boyfriend some credit, he'd been ready to play the long game. Hadn't missed a step getting behind her shields, using that lazy drawl and innocent wink to lure her in.
Had even used her own knowledge of food and poisons against her, using a concoction from her own stores to mix in her drinks, fully aware that she was all but immune to street name drugs.
She'd been so blindsided, her naturally thought when she couldn't get her feet under her was that she'd drunk too much, and even giggled the thought to Romeo as he carried her home.
It was only when he dropped her to their bed with care, and started stripping her undergarments that something twigged in her mind. His hand caresses her breast, and his tongue forces its way into her mouth, and her heart stops.
No. No, no, no, no, NO.
She tries to force him off, but he's paid attention to her talks and picked the perfect dose. Her clothes are on the floor along with any weapon she carries on her person.
Her hands fumble, grasping for skin, and make contact with his arms. Her fingernails, sharp and painted purple pierce his skin. The hitman curses and flinches, but doesn't stop, moving down and trying to force her legs apart.
He has some trouble, and hesitates when he realises he's seeing double. Bianchi may be trusting, but even Reborn never knew she used nail polish laced with snake venom. It's clumsy, not strong enough to be lethal, and leaves an obvious trace, but as a last resort it's gloriously effective.
The does is weak, but it's enough for Bianchi to force Romeo off and reach for the hidden drawer in her bed stand. Romeo flings himself on top of her, but not fast enough. Inside is a poison cupcake and some unfinished dough she'd been working on. The dough she throws on his eyes, and as he howls in pain, she forces the cupcake down his throat.
His throat is paralysed in seconds, but it takes him a good ten minutes to die. Just enough time for Bianchi to take the antidote and break the man's bones with her heels, screaming obscenities and curses all the while.
What she doesn't understand is why – Bianchi's family is well off, but not particularly well connected. Certainly not worth a long con like this – unless it was meant to be a message? Her body, dead and defiled at her father's door? Could he have upset someone enough for that?
Right now it doesn't matter. She needs a clean-up crew to get Romeo out of here, and then she needs the one person she's always been able to count on.
The phone picks up on the third ring, and Bianchi sags in relief.
God bless her Arcobaleno. When he hears what happened, he tells her to get to the Cavallone estate as soon as she's removed the body and covered her tracks.
It's nearly 3 days later, and Romeo barely makes a footnote in the obituaries (cause of death: food poisoning, hah) when she finds herself in a guest bedroom, documents strewn across the bed. Reborn is putting them in order, and looks up as she walks over. Bianchi can only sit and listen as Reborn explains the simple, but painful tale.
Bianchi had an excellent reputation as a hitwoman. She was also beautiful, and given her brother's parentage, the preferred heir for their family. The only issue was her refusal to, as her mother had put it 'become a woman'. Romeo apparently, had decided to amend that.
"His family had strong connections, but weren't very well off financially" Reborn explained. "Too many bad business deals. A union between the two families would have been advantageous for both of them, but Romeo's wasn't interested unless they could guarantee heirs."
So after getting her likes, hates and sexuality 'issue' out of her mother, Romeo had tried to seduce her, and decided to do whatever it took in order to make her realise sex was something wonderful. As if the only thing stopping her was the fact that she'd never tried it. Apparently he'd gotten tired of her stopping him over the months and decided to try something drastic.
Bianchi feels numb, and not just because her fingernails are starting to dig into her skin. What's more terrifying is that her mother must have had some idea of what Romeo was planning, and hadn't even warned her. In some countries, Bianchi still isn't even legal.
But then, her mother has always known how shaky her ground is. Part of an arranged marriage herself, and having to raise the bastard child of her husband, well aware that he would divorce her and leave her out cold if he could convince his lover to marry him. To have the legitimate child inherit, and 'do her duty' like she had, well, perhaps Bianchi could see how she had justified keeping her mouth shut.
Didn't mean she would ever forgive her for it though.
Reborn stays with her that night, and their relationship is rekindled. Bianchi has no desire to go out and get burned, and Reborn openly admits that Dino no longer needs him as he once did. At least having Bianchi around gives him ample time to explain to his student how to treat a lady.
By the time the Cavallone heir is dragging his family back to providence, Bianchi is performing solo again, and Reborn kisses her cheek in farewell. She giggles and wonders if he would have been quite so dashing if he'd spotted the tattoo she'd recently gotten on her shoulder, when she and Dino had found themselves outside a tattoo parlour.
She loves Reborn, but she's quite happy to let Dino take the full fall for that one.
Bianchi loves her little brother. Their awkward history aside, she really does, and she's beyond grateful that he's finally found somewhere he can be accepted. However, there is no denying that in becoming part of the Vongola, Hayato has thrust Bianchi back into the spotlight.
Her brother is going to be Vongola, which means Bianchi has a connection to Vongola. And Reborn is currently out of the country for the foreseeable future.
Suddenly, she's become desirable again, and all the men who had stayed away begin approaching her again, deciding her favour is worth the risk. Even her father is calling her up, expecting her to fulfil her duty now that Hayato is officially incapable of inheriting (despite the fact that with his relationship history, he has no room to be complaining about hers). It's beyond frustrating, and frankly if she leaves any more bodies in her wake from would be suitors she's likely to attract the Vindice. At least her mother has the good sense not to contact her.
She hops on the next plane to Japan with a very set goal plan in mind. Find Hayato's new boss, make sure he's actually worth Hayato's loyalty and Reborn's time, and then find a way to stay.
Part one is easy. Part two ends up being rather complicated, as she decides to take a leaf out of Reborn's book and act up her and Reborn's romance (they'd done something rather similar with Dino, so Reborn quite happily goes along with it) while testing the heir.
She does rather feel sorry for him. It's painfully obvious the boy was a civilian until just recently, and between Reborn, Dying Will Bullets and her brother showing her family's tendency to find someone or something and obsess, he's clearly inches from a mental breakdown. Bianchi pushes past her sympathy though – if he can't handle this, he'll never survive what's coming. Besides, once she begins infiltrating the Home Economics class, all rational thought leaves her. Because Romeo appears.
Here's the thing. Romeo's dead. She made very, very sure that Romeo was dead, so it can't be Romeo. But the second she sees that curly hair and lazy eye, instinct takes over.
By the time the red haze clears, she's stormed out of the school, her brother and the Vongola heir are nowhere in sight, and the school is covered in wall devouring frosting. As she makes her getaway, Reborn appears in her path, his shadow gliding over the road from where he stands on the wall.
"I didn't expect you quite this early Bianchi."
She smiles. "My brother's good fortune hit the underworld sooner than expected. Italy was getting awkward. And I missed you."
There's a quiet chuckle in reply, and Reborn jumps down, landing in her arms with practised ease.
"Tsuna could use a tutor in Home Economics and Art" he says. "And Maman could use some help around the house. It's not the most exciting work, but you could use the chance to reconnect with your brother."
Bianchi tightens her hold and smiles back. "Ah Reborn, you know me far too well."
Reborn, her brother and a bolt hole where she can catch her breath from Italy. How could she ever say no?
Bianchi finds that for the simplicity of living in Namimori, she loves every minute. Her presence is certainly a relief for Nana Sawada, when after a few months the house population explodes with 3 additional children and another pair of adult hands is thoroughly appreciated. Tsuna is also too much of a civilian, so Reborn lets her get away with far more than she would in Italy in an attempt to increase his capacity for sheer insanity. If she could just figure out a way to be around her brother without goggles (and kill off that damn Dr. Shamal without Reborn noticing), life would be pretty much perfect.
All in all, Bianchi finds she's rather content.
And then the Arcobaleno curse is broken, and her beloved Reborn starts growing.
It's subtle at first, a few inches here, a couple of years there, but by the time the tenth generation are preparing to travel to Italy for the Inheritance Ceremony, Bianchi enters the living room and realises Reborn is in his late teens and taller than she is. The pudgy baby fat and tiny frame are gone, leaving behind a man with sharp eyes and incredible cheekbones, staring at her with terrifying focus.
It's entirely new ground and she's not afraid to admit her pulse starts racing. She loves Reborn, she really, truly does. But she's always had the assurance that he'd never need anything more than she was giving. In this single moment, that assurance has crumbled to pieces, and the ground seems to shake under her feet.
But before she can follow that train of thought, Reborn is there, hands on her shoulders and helping her stabilise. He's watching her with concern, and no small amount of understanding. When he's certain she's steady, his hand reaches for hers, actions slow and transparent for her benefit. He lifts it to her lips, and kisses her hand the way he always has.
Tension leaves her shoulders, and she smiles, relaxing as her hitman smiles back.
"Will we really still work now?" she asks, less of a question to him than it is to the universe in general, but he moves in, arms wrapping round her frame, smaller than his own for the first time in their relationship.
"I don't know" Reborn replies, more honest than he probably wants to be. "But I'm the World's Greatest Hitman – I don't give up anything without a fight."
He drops a light kiss on her forehead, and has a hand running through her hair, while the other stays on her shoulder, soft enough that she could break from the hold if she desired. Bianchi doesn't, and merely rests her forehead on his shoulder, leaning into the embrace.
She knows this won't be enough. Eventually, when Reborn finishes growing, they will need to have the conversation they've avoided for years.
But for now, she's willing to remain in the happily ever now.
Just want to stop and note that I know in the anime it says Bianchi and Romeo broke up because of an argument. But considering that Bianchi killed him, and every time she sees Adult Lambo goes after him with a close to obsessive rage, I find it hard to believe it was something that minor. Honestly I'd even forgotten it brought it up until I re-watched the episode, and by that point I'd already decided what I was doing with Romeo so chose to ignore it (or assume Reborn was lying in order to protect Bianchi).
Also, never read the hidden bullet novels, so Shamal is only a footnote on the grounds that I honestly do not know their canon history.