Well…here we go. Another Epic writing that bites me in the butt. By Epic I mean long, written slowly, and involves a golden eyed, possessive, jealous, vindictive, and sex-driven Battousai.
I haven't decided how dark this piece of writing is going to be, but I imagine it will be darker than Blood Dawn, and around Amber Linings (which is way darker than anything I ever written) in style.
So for all of you who wanted to know what would happen if the Battousai lost his Rurouni conscience and decided he wanted Karou, here you go.
Remember, I do not own the characters. I just bend, twist, taunt, and make them into what I want them. That's not owning…that borrowing with privileges.
Possessive-smut with a darker under lining!
Kaoru was certain, in the silent understanding of a woman that her world was ending. Sitting cross-legged under Sakura blooms she watched the river trail a lazy pattern of blue ribbon through Tokyo.
It was spring - the time of rebirth, the times of forgiveness and love and a time of celebration.
He was leaving.
It had started with Enishi, his quite withdrawal, his silent shadows that had once slipped from his gaze, darkened his warm violet to almost gray. He shadows had finally caught up with her Rurouni and she couldn't think of a way to forgive him, or herself.
If only she had guessed the true source of Enishi's Jinchuu, if only she had been better with a sword. Kaoru bit down on her knuckles, uncaring if she bled.
Her heart was breaking. Had slowly been breaking since he introduced himself as the Battousai so long ago to help her against Jineh. Perhaps the worst and most painful part of her discovery was that he did indeed love her.
But he sheltered, nurtured his shadows closer to his heart than he could ever shelter her. Her eyes were dry, she had cried herself to sleep so often that now even her heart was quite in its shattering.
Sano had started the slow downfall, his past coming to light with Saitoh's inquiries. Kaoru hated Saitoh, his questions, and his uncaring mannerism that was slowly destroying everything she worked so hard to build.
Sano had mentioned that once the winter ice cleared that he would be leaving.
Kenshin had told Sano he would go with him. She could do nothing to stop him. He saw himself as stained, too broken to be fixed.
It all came back to her. She had taught Kenshin to live, how to survive in the dark shadows of what he done, and she had sent him on a path of guilt riddled with his own fears and insecurities. Kaoru wondered if it wasn't Tomoe's final revenge, taking the one thing he needed to survive.
Kaoru had attempted to wrestle it back from the dead, from where she had buried it. Had come so close to winning it back, come so close to finding what she needed in him.
He had come at a time when Kaoru had finally began to believe that he could love her, that Kenshin would slowly begin to let his shadows stay as shadows.
Her faked death, the realization of his own emotions, all of it had been in vain. He had reached inside himself and with Enishi's words, his silent prompting, had found those shadows and clung to them.
He was afraid. Afraid of his heart and the consequences that would come with loving another. It was one thing to love her, it was another completely to act on those emotions.
Standing, Kaoru wearily wondered if she was doomed to never find someone now. She was twenty, an age that should have had her with at least three children and married. An old maid to her culture, but it had never bothered her before.
And now her heart broke. She wanted to be a mother, to see three, four little red haired children weaving between her knees, waving bokkens.
Sighing she began the walk back to her home. Hers now. Alone again. Yahiko was making plans to move into Sano's old place and show up to help with classes and his own private lessons.
Kaoru sighed again and moved until she came to a familiar bend. Blinking back the sudden tears she squared her shoulders and forced her emotions to still. She would not break.
"That is entirely too sad of an expression to be on such a young face." The voice was old, crackled, tinged with weariness and age.
Kaoru turned and bowed politely to the old woman resting on the log in front of her.
"My apologies." Kaoru softly stated. "I did not see you."
The old woman cackled, her voice rusty with age even in laughter. "When you're my age, you expect to be overlooked. By what has put such a expression on your beautiful face?"
"Fear." Kaoru admitted.
"I see sadness dear. I am not so old that I do not see that it is not you afflicted by such a condition. Perhaps the one you love?"
Kaoru blinked. She hadn't thought she'd given so much away.
"I am no stranger to this place, my dear. I have seen you and that handsome red haired man of yours. I have also heard he was leaving you, for China. An attempt to settle his past."
Kaoru sighed. "He won't be back." Kaoru knew it like she knew little else. Even if he ever came back to Japan, he wouldn't see her. He wouldn't want to interfere.
Kaoru felt a spark of anger ignite in her stomach but she pushed it down. She knew his reasons, but it didn't make it any easier. If she wasn't careful, she could learn to hate him.
It would be so easy. Love and hate were simply two sides to a coin.
The old woman nodded in agreement. In what, Kaoru wasn't sure.
Kaoru raised her tired eyes to the setting sun and shook her head. "I am afraid I must be returning home. Do you have a place to stay...or an escort to get you home before dark?"
The woman grinned, a child's smile even for the missing teeth. "I shall be fine. It's young, pretty things like yourself that should be worried."
Kaoru bowed again and quickly moved back to the dojo. She knew he was leaving soon, perhaps in the morning. She had felt it all day.
Kaoru realized when she walked into the Dojo that things were different. Yahiko was nowhere to be seen, and the smells of dinner had yet to fill the air.
Kaoru gritted her teeth and walked inside. Yahiko was leaning against his door, his eyes suspiciously bright.
"He wants to talk to you."
Kaoru nodded and closed her eyes. Taking another deep breath she slid his door open.
It was bare. Not that Kenshin ever needed much, he was such a minimalist, but now it was as if no one had been there, ever. Kaoru raised her eyes and met melted violet.
"Tonight?" Kaoru's voice was soft, not broken, but steady even as the last of her hope died.
He nodded. "Sano decided leaving at night was easier."
Easier, Kaoru thought desperately, on who?
They stared at each other, unsure what could be said, what should be said. There were so many things between them they had never voiced, and now it appeared they never would.
"Kaoru-dono..." Kenshin started, but stopped, his Rurouni masked sliding so surely into place.
Kaoru's eyes closed tightly. "Make sure you stop by if you're ever back this way." It was foolish; they both knew he would never do such a thing.
"Hai." It was a lie. He had never lied before.
Kaoru knew his reasons as she knew her own. The first time had nearly broken her; she wasn't sure what this second parting would accomplish. Three times would destroy her.
He picked up his bag, his face showing true weariness for the first time. "Good by, Kaoru-dono." His fingers trailed down her face, and then he was gone.
Kaoru stood still, listening to the sounds of his shoes on the wood of her floor, her heart pounding.
The creaking of her gate.
Kaoru sunk to her knees.
He was gone. All that was left was the smell of ginger.
Taking a deep breath she searched for the tears, for the aching that should have torn at her soul.
Numb. She was utterly, truly numb and the only other emotion she could find was a slowly building anger.
Kaoru desperately attempted to tap into it, to control it, dampen it somehow.
It wouldn't, and Kaoru was forced to contemplate if this was hate.
Anger that wouldn't leave. That grew and festered and left you feeling hollow and dark.
"Kaoru?" Yahiko's voice was strained, as if he to was struggling with some inner battle. The only one of the three of her boys left.
"Yahiko," Kaoru asked, her voice shaking only slightly. "Lets go out to eat. Tonight I think I would burn the Dojo down."
Hate. Kaoru prayed she could keep herself from falling into that trap.
Kenshin and Sano walked softly to the docks, their footfalls echoing strangely in the silent places that had previously bustled with life.
Kenshin stood silently at the docks, watching the ships being loaded with supplies for the long journey.
Kenshin sighed. He didn't know what he was going to find there. Enishi? His brother-in-law wanted him dead, had become something broken and torn.
Did he hope to check on him, to make peace? Kenshin was unsure, but knew that going back was unacceptable.
How many more would come to kill the one who had cared for him, who had taken him in a taught the word 'family'? He knew part of him loved her, but he couldn't find it in himself to let go.
He was too stained, and somewhere deep inside, Kenshin knew he still cared for Tomoe. He couldn't go to Kaoru with that taint on his heart.
A small figure came teetering out of the fog, and Kenshin wondered exactly how ancient this woman was. He felt the faintest stirring inside him, the first movement his darker side had made in close to a year.
He had hoped mastering Hiten Mitsurgui Ryu would keep it under control, but it seemed not.
He just wondered what exactly about an old woman would bring the Battousai tendencies of his personality to appear.
She said nothing, just hobbled up to him and Sano. Sano was stiff, uncertainty apparent in his posture. What did you say to a little woman about being on the docks of all places?
She paused when she came into arms length of Kenshin, her beady black eyes staring at him, searching. She grinned suddenly; as if she found what she was looking for.
"I thought you were in there." She muttered, and reached forward and grasped Kenshin's arm. Kenshin opened his mouth to ask exactly what she was talking about, when the world tilted.
He heard Sano's shout of annoyance at the old woman, and he felt her fingers release his arm but it was several moments before he caught his bearings.
Something felt different. Opening his eyes he looked around, but the woman was hobbling away, cackling to herself.
"Are you alright?" Sano questioned, muttering under his breath about stupid old women.
Kenshin shook his head, but everything suddenly realigned and although he felt lighter, as if something had been taken off his shoulders, he couldn't find anything else wrong.
"We should hurry if we are going to make the ship, Sano." Kenshin told his friend, his violet gaze still wandering the shipyard for some unseen threat.
Sano agreed, and started to walk forward.
Kenshin hesitated, but then sighed. Goodbye Japan.
She paused, her feeble steps slowing as she heard the sound of a whistle echo. He was leaving. Good.
"You can come out now."
He came out of the shadows, his hair pulled high on his head, his eyes glinting molten fire.
"You set me loose. Explain." His words were fierce, neither kind nor threatening but holding the demand just the same.
"You care for her."
He was silent then. "What do you want, old one?"
She sighed. "Her mother once did a kind favor for me. I am simply paying a debt so I may die in peace."
He nodded then, the blood-like hair falling across his shoulders. He looked young, his thirty year unapparent in his face or stature. She knew he aged differently, trapped in the Rurouni.
"Do not break her."
"I won't. I keep what is mine, old one."
She nodded in satisfaction, and watched him disappear into the mist.
A nightmare unleashed perhaps, but all that the Kamiya child would need to survive.
She hoped that Japan was ready for what she had let loose.
She very well doubted it. One a nightmare, always a nightmare, but the ten years of confinement to the Rurouni would have taught him some patience at least.
She dared not mess with what the gods had decreed anymore than she already had.
A single ship's horn blared into the night, sealing Japan's fate.
He stood, watching the ship slowly begin to make its way into the open seas, out of Tokyo bay. He felt nothing but a strong rush of contempt for his other half.
It was no secret that they despised each other. He had never made an attempt to hold the extreme emotions the Rurouni part of him had feared, in check.
Turning, his began to walk towards Tokyo. The Dojo was too much of a temptation and he had some catching up to do with some old 'friends' who owed him. Favors, money, and few other underhanded bargains that the 'good' side of him wanted to forget about.
He would be back. He had a Shinhondai to seduce into his bed, in his life. Unlike the other half of himself sailing away from his emotions, this Kenshin had every intention of embracing the fire he felt.
He was the Battousai he feared nothing.