Disclaimer: Do I own Rurouni Kenshin? Hold on, let me check with my secretary, my mystical #8 ball.. And it says.. 'In your dreams'.. Why you little. (throws against wall).. So as you can see, I don't own RK. wish as I might.. I never will.. BUT I CAN DREAM!!!

Author's Note: I just stared this one after reading a few Battousai/Kaoru fics. I don't know why, but they seem to be a tad bit more interesting. so anyway they sparked this idea and BOOM!, I started a story. This is going to be different from my last one. and it'll be longer. So. here goes my attempt at a second fic!!! I'm sorry if this has some or a lot of OOC-ness, but I always put a little bit of me and people I'm around into the characters. it's a habit! I'm trying to get better at that. oh. and this is an AU fic.. just to warn you..

~Coming Of The Dawn~

***Chapter 1- Witness***

Kaoru found herself running. Running as fast as she could. Or, better, as fast as her KIMONO would allow her to. She had just witnessed something she shouldn't have. and she had to get back to Misao's house. she'd be safe there at the Aoiya. There, no one could get her.

Not even him.

She was running out of breath, and part of her wanted to stop and rest. But her mind was screaming at her. What if he had seen her? What if he was already running after her? He never left witnesses. What if. what if he was going to kill her, too?

With that thought in mind, she forced herself to run harder, faster. to the point of ripping the seams on her kimono. She was tripping over raised rocks and in holes in the road. And every time she felt more fear. Everytime she did so, she knew that was just slowing her down. bringing her closer to him. Ever closer. but she saw it.

The Aoiya.

She sighed in relief and without checking behind her she ran to the building. She burst through the door, nearly plowing over Okina and Omasu in the process. She shut the door, apologized, and then ran off to find Misao's. she would know what to do.

She felt a hand wrap around her wrist from behind. She froze, her heart stopped. Then, she spun around.

Aoshi stood there, one hand firm on her wrist. "What happened?"

Kaoru sighed. "I.I."

He gave her an icy glare. "Were you being chased?"

She looked at her friend. "I don't know.but."

"But what? You KNOW you're not supposed to walk around Kyoto during the night, especially alone!" Aoshi's words seethed with venom. "What do you think you were doing?"

She shook her head for minute, trying to remember why she had gone out so late in the first place. "I needed some air, and I just went for a walk. And I saw something I shouldn't have seen. I don't know if he followed me or not." she shook as she explained it to Aoshi. he wasn't exactly the person she wanted to talk to, but he was the leader of the Oniwabanshu.

He didn't even say anything else. One more glare from him, a threatening one at that, made her spill it all. But he did. "Who?

"BATTOUSAI!!!" she cried. "I. I kind of walked up on him killing some officials of some sort. I ran off as soon as I realized what was going on, but I don't know if he sensed me or saw me or not. I just ran. "

A small grin wanted to play across Aoshi's face. He had been waiting for Battousai to put a threat upon one of the members of the people under his care. That gave him an excuse to go after him.

He let her wrist go then. She backed away, trying to contemplate how and why Misao loved him so much. he just didn't appeal to her, especially since he was so cold most of the time. She gripped her wrist, pampering it from the pain Aoshi had caused. He hadn't meant to, of course, it was just a reaction from hearing Battousai's name.

"Okina, round up the rest. We're going to search and see if Battousai did follow Kaoru here or not." Aoshi demanded. "Then you will stay here with Misao and Kaoru to make sure no one gets here if he is hiding around here."

"Excuse me Aoshi-sama? I am NOT staying here! Every single outing you and the rest of the Oniwabanshu go on, I am stuck here! I am part of this group too!" she complained to him. "I can fight! I've been training my entire life!"

Aoshi knew he didn't have to do much to get her to agree with him. He just gave her a look from the corner of his eyes and a small grin. "But I don't want you to get hurt, Misao, we may need you're assistance later. I don't need you getting harmed."

Misao blushed but lowered her head so he couldn't see, or so she hoped. "Fine. But this is under protest."

Then Kaoru took a hold of Misao's arm and pulled her off to her room with her. She needed someone to talk to. And NOW.


Misao's eyes widened at the story Kaoru dictated to her.

"And the next thing I know, there were these 3 men lying on the ground in pools of blood. That's when I realized who he was and what he was doing. I ran off, but I don't know if he turned and saw me or what." Kaoru ended.

"He's THAT FAST?" she said, worry in her voice. "None of the Oniwabanshu are that quick. Niether is Aoshi-sama."

Kaoru was still shaken up by her experience. She looked at her best friend, of whom she had lived with ever since her father had died and their dojo burned to the ground a year and a half ago. She noticed that Misao seemed to be more worried the more she thought about her.family. looking for the Battousai.

"I'm sure they'll be fine Misao." Kaoru stated, her statement with meaning. "They are highly trained. Those men he killed were only officials from the government, stupid enough to go out without bodyguards."

That seemed to give her a little comfort. She smiled a weak, half hearted smile at Kaoru to let her know that she had at least heard her, although she kept her hands placed in her lap and was fisting them together in a nervous manner. She and Kaoru looked at each other, neither knowing what to do to rid themselves of the anxiety.

And Kaoru couldn't shrug the feeling that she was being watched.

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

Battousai hung low in a tree towards the back of the Aoiya. where he could see through a window in at the girl from the street. The one that had seen him kill all those government officials. He had chased. her but a safe distance, not wanting her to scream and give him away. He had enough enemies now as it was, he didn't need the entire city after him because he had to kill a young woman.

But she had witnessed him kill. No one watched him kill and lived to tell of it.

He kept his amber eyes fixated on her face. He could tell she had told at least a few people of what she saw already. He knew because a group of people had split up with the words 'find the Battousai' and then left to find him. He had laughed inwardly. their leaving was only taking them farther away from him.

The other reason he hadn't killed her on the spot was that he just couldn't bring himself too. He had never killed a woman before. Men, yes, he had, many to be exact. But woman and children, they had never been on his hitokiri kill list. And he had never had to kill them yet.

But that was lie. He had killed a woman before.

He shook his head at the thought. That had been an accident, one that still haunted him and he had vowed that day that he would never kill another woman.

Again Battousai forced himself to keep his eyes on the girl. He had to admit, that even from his far place up in the tree, she did look quite pretty with her long raven black hair and blue eyes. She looked worried, and he had a feeling she knew she was being watched. That made him laugh. He scared her. but that thought soon slid. If he scared her she wouldn't have stayed around the place he had killed those men at for so long. She had to have been standing there for 5 minutes after he finished killing them before she finally ran. He could sense her.

No, she wasn't scared of him, he concluded. She was just panicky over the thought of him having followed her. Anxiety. Not fear. That made him angry.

But for now he had to forget about that. Right now, he had to figure out how he was going to silence her. He wouldn't kill her. But the longer he didn't do something about it, the more people would find out about him. The probably was, she knew what he looked like and could give a description to police. That's why he had to silence her.

And fast.

Author's Notes: So.. What did you all think of chapter 1? I'm hoping you like it. I'll try and post another chapter soon. I just hope you all like it.. Review for me please? Maybe your reviews can give me somemore inspiration for this story. inspiration to write faster maybe? Thank you so much for reading! I'll update ASAP!


Crystal Renee!!