I do not own Yu Yu Hakusho. This is the sequel to she always smiles, read that first.

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The Reakai Tantei met at the park to discuss their next case. It seemed like a standard stolen artifact case but as Botan gave the case briefing it began to seem near impossible. The crooks had hidden the artifact underground, in a a frozen Wasteland!!

"This is suicide!! We can't dig through ice or rock!! Yusuke whined.

"We have to fight first. Maybe that will get us through," Kuwabara yelled with gusto. He didn't believe himself but he was always ready for a fight. "Let's go!!"

"Pack for the weather first, we do not want to freeze." Kurama told him.

The three more or less human member the Rekai Tantei went back to their respective homes to pack for the trip. The thoughts of their trouble in completing the mission had driven the fact that they were headed to Hiei's childhood vicinity completely out of mind.

Botan waited until they were gone to drop her cheery mask, "Hiei, are you all right" "The years I spent in that place were torture. I didn't have to deal with the Koorime's superstitious fear of me, but they were scared of my fire heritage anyway. The bandits I traveled with hurt me for it.
The ferry girl was fingering her hair ribbon again, "fight fire with fire", she whispered remembering all the whippings she had gotten from her town.

"There were some, who didn't and were nice, and I gained quite some affection for them, and even the worst gained some. It's stupid but I don't want to have to kill them." Hiei stopped talking.

He wondered why he so often let go of his coldness and opened his emotions when Botan dropped her cheery mask.

"It's not stupid, I cried for a month after ferrying my father, and even when I had to take the preacher who turned the town against me."

She would have grabbed his hand to comfort him, but Hiei had retreated back into his mask, and she was not going to demand that he take it off when she wouldn't let go of hers. -------------------- ------------------ --------------------- -
--------------------------- ----- That's the first chapter of the sequel, do you like it?