Author Notes: Hello again, everyone! Thanks to fellow writer fanofthisfiction, my daughter and I sped through all 24 episodes of the Akatsuki No Yona anime and enjoyed each one. Too bad we now have to resort to the manga to find out what happens next. In the meantime, enjoy this small offering :)
Warnings: Fluff and maybe a bit of OOC-ness.
Disclaimer: Akatsuki No Yona belongs to Mizuho Kusanagi.
- Story Start -
Yona awoke early one morning and looked around her, a bit surprised to find the others still fast asleep. She was usually the last one up since she sacrificed a couple of hours' sleep each night to practise her archery or swordplay.
Picking her way carefully past the sleeping bodies - it was rather cute how they arranged themselves around her every night - she went to wash her face at the stream a little way from their camp. The sky was starting to lighten in the distance so she walked on a little further until she came to a cliff side that faced east. Leaning against a tree trunk, she waited for the sunrise.
The sky lightened even more, going from dusky purple to red, orange and pink as the sun peeped over the horizon. It was a beautiful sight. She found herself wishing Hak could share it with her, but he needed his sleep.
Yona may not be the most observant one in her group, but she knew he woke up every night to watch over her while she practised. A fond smile touched her lips and faded when she remembered last night's incident.
Hak had gotten into another pointless argument with Kija, which ended up with the other dragons having to step in to placate their miffed white haired brother.
Yona sighed. On the one hand, she wished Hak wouldn't keep calling Kija 'White Snake' to rile him up. On the other, she couldn't begrudge Hak his little bit of fun. He used to smile a lot more when they still lived at the castle... when her father was still alive.
Yona pushed away that unhappy thought, determined to enjoy the sunrise before returning to camp. Yun would be up soon to get breakfast ready and would worry if he found her missing. So would the others for that matter.
"Good morning, Yona."
Startled, Yona swung around to see Yun standing there with a pot in his hand, possibly to fetch water from the stream. Beside him were Jeno and Shin-Ah.
"Good morning, everyone," Yona greeted.
"Why are you up so early?" Jeno asked as Ao chirped a greeting and leaped from Shin-Ah's shoulder to Yona's.
"No reason," Yona assured them. "I just wanted to see the sunrise."
"It's beautiful, isn't it?" Kija agreed, strolling up with Jae-ha.
"You two are are up as well?" Yona looked behind them. "What about Hak?"
"Still sleeping," Jae-ha said. "Shall I go wake him up?"
Kija tossed his head.
"Let him sleep. A magnificent view like this should only be enjoyed by those with comparable beauty. Like the princess, us four brothers and Yun!"
"What about Hak?"
"Hak?" Kija scoffed. "He's not beautiful at all."
Yona gave him a reproachful look which he tried to ignore.
"How could you even say that!"
"Yona," Yun held up a placating hand. "We're not saying he's ugly or anything-"
"Even though he is," Kija muttered and Shin-Ah nudged him.
"- but next to us," Yun continued, "a handsome bishounen like me, and these four dragons, Hak... well, he looks..."
"Normal," Jae-ha said.
"Average," Shin-Ah said.
"Run-of-the-mill," Kija said.
"Ordinary," Jeno said. "And I'm hungry."
Yona stared at them all in turn.
"No, we're not," Yun said.
Kija cleared his throat and raised his hand to Yun in an 'I've got this' manner.
"Yona, does the Thunder Beast have silky fine hair that falls into place without the need for a hairbrush?" he asked, tossing his white hair to emphasize his point.
"Princess Yona, does he have beautiful eyes that glow like jewels?" Shin-Ah asked, removing his mask and looking at her. But only for a second before hastily donning his mask again.
"Yona-chan, does he have beautiful manners and know how to court a girl?" Jae-ha asked, bowing over Yona's hand with courtly grace and kissing her fingertips.
"Does he have a big, carefree smile and know how to make you laugh?" Jeno asked, flashing a happy grin at her while his stomach growled again.
"And finally, does he know how to cook up a storm, sew you new clothes and make medicines?" Yun asked with a smirk.
Yona snatched her hand back and stared at them, feeling a mix of disbelief and annoyance. What they said were... not untrue, but Hak... Hak was so much more than all that. She held up her hand in turn, eyes flashing.
"Now, you all listen up," she said and turned to Kija.
"It's true that Hak's hair is black and always looks like he's just tumbled out of bed. But that only makes me want to run my fingers through it even more!"
As Kija's eyes widened in shock, Yona turned to Shin-Ah.
"It's true that Hak's eyes are narrower than any of yours and don't shine like gems. But his gaze is so intense, it makes my heart race!"
As Shin-Ah took a step back, Yona turned to Jae-ha.
"It's true that Hak doesn't use flowery words and sometimes treats me like a child. But the words he does use come straight from his heart and they touch me right here!" She pressed a hand against her chest.
As Jae-ha blinked in surprise, Yona turned to Jeno.
"It's true that Hak seldom smiles let alone laugh. But that only makes me treasure the times he does smile all the more!"
Finally, she turned to Yun who had the grace to look abashed.
"And while Hak can't cook or sew or heal like you," she said, "he'd still find a way to take good care of me no matter what. So to me, Hak is the most beautiful one of all!"
Drawing herself up to her full height of five feet one inch, she glared at them all, daring them to disagree with her. Not that they would. In fact, none of them looked like they were capable of speech at the moment, staring at her as though she had turned into a dragon herself.
Then Jae-ha gave a small cough.
"Forgive us, Yona-chan. We know you care for Hak very much."
Kija cleared his throat.
"We just didn't realise how completely he'd stolen your heart."
Shin-Ah nodded in agreement.
"You probably loved him before you even met any of us," Jeno added.
Yona stared at them in shock.
"Oh! No, it's not what you think," she protested. "Hak is my dear childhood friend, that's all."
She was horrified when her eyes started to sting.
"I'm sorry if we hurt your feelings," Yun offered.
"Please forgive us," Shin-Ah added and bowed.
As the others nodded with remorseful expressions, Yona bit her lip, blinking her tears away and feeling rather silly at her outburst. Honestly, if Hak had heard her, he would be rolling on the ground laughing his head off... and teasing her for years to come.
"It's alright," she said and smiled at them. "I love all of you too. Let's get back before Hak-"
She broke off when Jae-ha held up his hand. Then booted footsteps sounded and Hak appeared, yawning widely and running one hand running through his disheveled hair.
"What's this? A meeting?" he asked, looking around at them before squinting at Yona. "Why are your eyes wet? Are you upset?"
Yona pressed her lips together, cheeks hot. She swung to the others.
"This meeting is adjourned," she declared. "Nothing was discussed, nothing was decided."
"Eh?" Hak's eyebrows shot up and he folded his arms across his chest. "What sort of meeting is that?"
"Nothing important!" Yona pushed past him, her small hands fisted by her sides. "Let's go back to the camp, everyone!"
- o -
Hak watched her march off before turning to the others, eyebrows still well up. Yun just gave a loud sigh.
"Don't try to pretend, Hak. You heard every single word, didn't you?"
With all five of them staring at him, Hak dropped his puzzled look and nodded.
"So what," Kija scoffed with a toss of his head. "You still can't hold a candle to our looks."
"Oh well, beauty lies in the beholder's eyes and all that," Yun said, waving his hand. "We can't all marry her, you know."
As the four dragons pouted, Yun narrowed his eyes at Hak.
"When are you going to confess your feelings for her?"
"Come on," Jae-ha said, rolling his eyes. "We're all gorgeous, but anyone can see you only have eyes for her."
Hak glared at him.
"That goes without saying - all of you are male," he growled.
"So?" Jae-ha asked, looking puzzled.
Hak face palmed while Yun shook his head.
"Anyway, it's time to get breakfast going," Yun said, clapping Hak on his shoulder. "Tell Yona. She deserves to know. And don't take too long or I'll tell her myself."
Hak turned to him, eyes going wide.
"You'll do no such thing," he said. "I... I'll tell her."
"Oh?" Kija raised an eyebrow as he walked past him. "And when will that be?"
"Yes, when?" Shin-Ah asked as he too, filed past him.
"Soon!" Hak all but shouted at them.
"And how soon is soon, hmm?" Jae-ha drawled as he strolled past, one eyebrow raised.
"After breakfast?" Jeno prompted. "After lunch? Dinner?"
Hak stared in dismay at the retreating dragons, led by Yun, feeling panic flutter in his belly. Yes, he loved - no, adored - Yona. He would give up his life for her in a heartbeat, but telling her was another matter altogether.
"Soon!" he shouted and strode after them. "Don't you all say a word to her. Like she said, nothing was discussed, nothing was decided!"
The only reply he got was amused laughter which made him wonder if he should stop teasing them, especially Kija, the White Snake... er, Dragon.
- Story End -
A/N: Thank you for reading! Please leave a review if you enjoyed it :)