Title: Who or What
Author: Jordanna Morgan
Archive Rights: Please request the author's consent.
Characters: Rin and Yukio.
Summary: The Okumura brothers are separate halves of the same identity crisis.
Disclaimer: They belong to Kazue Kato. I'm just playing with them.
Notes: A Fandom Stocking gift for CornerOfMadness.
From his early childhood, there was never really any doubt of what Rin Okumura was. Other children his age hit the nail on the head, when they ran away screaming that the boy on a rampage in their daycare was a demon. Long before he knew that was a literal fact, he was conscious that he was different: temperamentally and, in some ways, even physically.
Maybe that was why his manifestation of fangs and a tail didn't give him the shock it should have later, when his powers awakened. If nothing else, those things felt somehow right, as if something that was an inward part of him all along had merely become visible to the world.
No, the what of Rin was not the issue he increasingly struggled with as he grew up. He was… what he was. And he was comfortable with that within himself, no matter the flaws others chastised him for.
What stymied him was his always-unstable place in the world around him. His broad swings from choirboy to schoolyard hellion, from aimless drifter to proudly supportive big brother, left him off-balance. Unlike Yukio, every time he tried to picture himself in some definite future mode of life, he only drew a blank—and that was more frightening than he cared to admit. Kids were supposed to have an idea by their mid-teens of the path they wanted to take. They were supposed to be starting to have a plan; yet at the age of sixteen, Rin still lacked that.
His relationship with life was what didn't feel right to him… or perhaps he was simply the one who felt like no one.
From the beginning, it never really occurred to Rin to ask what he was. Instead, the question that consumed him was who he was.
For as long as he could remember, Yukio Okumura could see monsters.
That traumatized him, but it also gave him purpose. From the day his father suggested he could protect his brother from demons, he knew the course he wanted to follow: to become an exorcist. All his energy was focused on gaining the knowledge and skill to achieve that goal. In his intensive study and practice, he found a world of disciplined structure that suited him well.
Literally or proverbially, structures are things in which to take shelter, and this was true for Yukio. As long as he was busy thinking, he didn't have to stop and feel anything.
Because at an age when most children were learning to write their names, Yukio struggled with the revelation that he was Satan's son—and Rin was even more so. That the brother he had resolved to protect was the very reason he could see demons since his birth, and that he too risked one day becoming… something like them. That the very order he aspired to join might eventually deem it necessary to take his life.
It was all the more reason he dedicated himself. If his will was strong enough, then perhaps, like Father Shiro, he might be able to shut out the darkness that hunted him—even though, unlike his adoptive parent, he carried the doorway to that darkness in his own blood.
For a while, he succeeded. He flourished as an exorcist, and he almost managed to convince himself he would be alright… until Rin's powers awakened.
Each day afterward, Yukio tested his blood, holding his breath as he watched for any trace of a demonic reaction.
An exorcist was who he was, who he had always been…
But he was terrifyingly unsure of what he was.
© 2015 Jordanna Morgan