Full Summary – Sequel to "Partners, Friends" - The death of a human at the hands of a youkai is a sin whose penalty is an unspeakable punishment. It is enough to make even the most hardened of criminal youkai think twice. So when the rich human tyrant Tarukane and his entire household are found dead and all evidence points to Hiei, he and his detective partner Kurama had better find out fast who the real culprit is before they are the ones paying the penalty!
Author's Note: December 9, 2007 – As with so many of my other stories, I have gone through this fic to break the OMG-LONG chapters into shorter, more manageable pieces. Because of this, which increases the overall number, it unfortunately also throws off all reviews before this date. Please note the changes as follows: any reviews to Chp 1 might refer to any of Chp's 1-4; Chp 2 broke out into Chp's 5-7; Chp 3 - Chp's 8-10; Chp 4 - Chp's 11-14; Chp 5 - Chp's 15 & 16; 6 - 17-19; 7 - 20-24; and 8 is now Chp 25.
Disclaimer – "Yu Yu Hakusho" and all known related characters do not belong to me. I get no monetary benefit from this. My benefit is the enjoyment of dealing with beloved characters.
"What Goes Around . . . "
Chapter 1 – The Deal Revoked
Koenma heard the door of his office open and looked up in annoyance. After having been engrossed in Yusuke and Kuwabara's fight with the Toguro brothers, he was so far behind in paperwork that he had given the order not to be disturbed for any reason. He started to yell at whoever had disobeyed that order but his breath hitched when he saw who stood in the doorway. "Batsukuno?" He frowned. The Chief of Justice was not known for visiting departments beneath his attention such as the Spirit Realm Investigations Bureau, which overlooked matters of the Human Realm. His jurisdiction was the Demon Realm and that took enough of his valuable time. "What are you doing here?" Koenma asked, sounding even more sour than he had meant.
Batsukuno strolled across the room and stopped at the desk, leaning casually against it. "Long time, no see, my prince," the humanoid youkai commented, as though visiting an old friend. "What has it been now? Six weeks? Seven?"
"What do you want, Batsukuno?" Koenma figured he probably was not hiding his unease as well as he would have liked. Whatever Batsukuno was here for, Koenma knew it could not be good.
"Lord Koenma, I'm deeply hurt." His expression did not reach his eyes, which appeared more like he was scheming something unpleasant. At least, that was Koenma's impression. "Cannot business equals visit one another on occasion?"
"I wasn't aware that you consider me an equal, Batsukuno - my father notwithstanding," he replied sardonically. "I'm flattered. However, I happen to be very busy just now. In fact, I had ordered that no one be allowed to bother me so if Jorju let you in, I can only guess you're here for more than idle talk."
Batsukuno gave a wolfish grin and Koenma suppressed a shudder, remembering well the last time he had seen it. "As a matter of fact, I do have business with you - or rather, I should say, with your former Spirit Realm detectives."
That made Koenma look back up so suddenly, he nearly gave himself whiplash. "Excuse me? What do you mean, my 'former' detectives? You don't mean Kurama and Hiei, do you?"
Batsukuno straightened with a look of surprise. "Oh? You've not heard, then? I would have thought your agents would keep you better informed. Has your dynamic duo not yet returned from their errand to the human Tarukane's compound, then? I have heard that you nearly lost your talented humans to the infamous Toguro brothers there, as well."
Koenma grunted, his patience with this pompous ass stretching thin. Even Hiei never tried his tolerance the way the chief admin was doing. "Spill it, Batsukuno. What's going on?"
The wolfish grin was back, bigger than before. "I'm afraid your pets have rather gotten themselves in over their heads this time. Even your favored thief will not be able to weasel his way out of this one, let alone the assassin." Batsukuno let the word hang in the air for a long moment.
Koenma jumped up on his desk, scattering paperwork everywhere in an effort to put himself close to eye-level with Batsukuno, outraged by the insinuation. "What are you talking about? Botan's already reported back to me and everything turned out fine. Yusuke and the others are escorting the Ice Maiden, Yukina, back to her home as we speak. No humans were killed except the Toguro's and they don't count!"
"Were they?" Batsukuno murmured. "Hm. I wonder. Anyway, they are not the ones to whom I am referring anyway. I mean Tarukane and his household."
"What are you saying?" Koenma gasped, his breath suddenly stolen.
"Dead. Every last one of them." He leaned in close, locking Koenma's eyes with his own. "Sword strokes - very clean, very professional."
"But . . . b-but Botan - "
"Was obviously mistaken. Was there ever a time when Hiei was alone after the ice girl was rescued? Seems he went back to finish what he started, so she would not have to know. He only stopped because of her, did he not?"
Koenma sat down on his desk, stunned. No! It could not be. Even Hiei knew better than that! True, he did nearly kill the ugly human tyrant in a passionate fury when at last they met. Even Koenma could not have blamed him at that point. However, Hiei had more sense than to return after the fact and kill the human, let alone go through the entire compound. On the other hand, Botan had told him that while Yusuke and Kuwabara took Yukina to safety, Kurama and Hiei combed the place for other possible prisoners - and Koenma could not deny that they had probably split up to do so out of efficiency. He shook his head. No! He could not believe it. Knowing what that meant for both of his youkai detectives, he would not believe it. He would just have to ask them for their side of the story when they got back, which should be any time.
Batsukuno chuckled, breaking into Koenma's thoughts. "I see that you are not taking the news very well. I can hardly blame you. You have invested quite a bit of time and trouble in them, haven't you? I do hate to see such efforts go to waste."
I'll bet you do! Koenma thought with a grunt.
Batsukuno moved to leave. "They should be returning shortly. Make sure that they come see me straight away."
"No! W-wait!" Koenma cried, jumping to his feet again. "There must be some other explanation - "
Batsukuno turned on him and Koenma shrank back from the sudden, cold glare. "Hiei has killed, not just one, but several dozen humans. That sin is inescapable. You know that as well as I. I granted them both probation against my better judgment. I see now that I was indeed mistaken. Their parole has been broken - unforgivably so. I will send my own men to keep an eye out for their arrival. They will be dealt with accordingly, I assure you."
With that, he was gone. Koenma sank heavily back down onto his desk, his paperwork forgotten.
Author's Notes: Please be sure to check my bio page for any updates, etc. Thanks!