:: Grandiose ::
Disclaimer: I don't own Gensomaden Saiyuki, which rightfully belongs to Minekura Kazuya.
Pairings: Goku/Sanzo and Homura/Goku, hinted Homura/Sanzo
Warnings: deliberately incorrect grammar, shounen ai/yaoi, language, allusion to adult situations
Notes: Much thanks to Iapetus for giving me the idea, as well as helping me with many of the other ideas in the midst of it all. Also thanks to Nikki for helping me when I got stuck, and for giving me fun stuff to "translate." Thank you, dictionary dot com, for the words I needed. Thank you, ABC Family, for airing reruns of Boy Meets World often (thus helping aid the idea here). And finally, thank you to the person who created the word "sharoosh" and started this insanity in the first place.
The pairings are not the main focus of the story, and were only thrown in to enhance the humor in twisted ways. Thus, the summary didn't have said pairings labeled. I apologize if I mislead anyone.
Constructive criticism (yes, even here) and feedback are appreciated.
The plan was simple; so simple, in fact, that it could have been applied to anyone. In order to broaden one's vocabulary, one needed a source from which to study. This could be done in various forms, such as flash cards, board games, or even just reading.
The reason: Sanzo was sick of having to hear the inane arguments. Gojyo, on one hand, could deliver a fine line when he wanted to-- and he often did when snapping back at the priest. When it came to fights with Goku, on the other hand, he tended to stoop down to the boy's level. Thus, the tedious insults.
The outcome would, if nothing else, make the car rides a mite less boring.
At least, that was how he'd planned it.
Once they reached the next town, Sanzo took it upon himself to get cigarettes. On his way back, he stopped by a bookstore to pick up a used but well-kept novel. This he tucked into his robes, where his fan and newspaper often mysteriously vanished to and from, and there it stayed until just the right moment.
The "right moment" happened to be as he walked into the inn's diner, confronting one of the typical verbal fights he had grown so sick of. Disgusted, he delivered a sharp smack to both Gojyo and Goku's heads, and then he dropped the book in the smaller idiot's lap.
Still rubbing his head, the brunette frowned as he picked up the gift and turned it over. "Sanzo... this is a book."
"It's a thesaurus," the priest corrected, pulling out a seat.
"Oh..." Goku blinked, and then turned to Hakkai. "I think this is yours, then."
Hakkai blinked back, but before he could respond Sanzo delivered another resounding thwack! to his charge's head.
"Idiot!" Sanzo swore between hits. "I gave it to you for a reason!"
"Ow!" Goku flailed in attempt to block the blows, scowling at Gojyo when the redhead snickered at his plight. "What do I need a book for?"
Before Sanzo could launch into another outburst of paper fan abuse, Hakkai intercepted the question. "A thesaurus, Goku, is a book which helps you find the right words to use in a certain situation. By applying a variety of words, it makes one's speech less redundant."
Goku stared blankly.
Through his teeth, Sanzo gritted out, "It will broaden your vocabulary and make you seem smarter."
"Ohh..." The boy wrinkled his nose in obvious distaste. Turning the book over again in his hands, he asked petulantly, "Do I have to?"
Once again, Hakkai smoothly cut in before another verbal or physical diatribe could burst. "I'll tell you what, Goku. After dinner, we'll play a game and see what we can do from there."
Gojyo seemed to have caught on, because he added, "Winner gets the extra dumplings and the bed furthest from the window."
The cold season was beginning to fall the further west they traveled. For this reason, when an inn could be found, there were often squabbles (usually just between Goku and Gojyo, as they were normally roommates in these cases) over who got to sleep furthest away from the frigidity. The problem could be easier solved by simply requesting a thicker blanket, or even another layer, but that defeated the purpose for those two.
Goku lost horribly that night. Amongst the three playing, Hakkai won by a landslide; Sanzo hadn't deigned himself to join, and instead had retired early. He heard about the results the next morning, though Gojyo and Goku's shouting in the middle of the night had been telling enough.
For a while, the thesaurus proved to be a good idea. Rides in the jeep were quieter, as Goku spent more time trying to absorb the words needed for the next word game. Occasionally, he and Hakkai would make sport of it during the ride. Sanzo always tuned them out, and Gojyo usually fell asleep.
Then came the morning Goku stumbled downstairs, late, for breakfast. His hair was even more mussed than usual, locks of it sticking out oddly from his diadem. He had hastily thrown on his clothes, and was quickly shoving a meatbun into his mouth as Sanzo gave him a withering look for throwing them off schedule. Gojyo swore he had tried to wake the kid for nearly fifteen minutes without success, and it had taken Sanzo literally dumping Goku on the floor to get him moving.
"Hey, kappa," the boy growled, swiping at the plate Gojyo held just out of reach. "Quit hogging it!"
The redhead smirked, snatching the last piece of toast off the dish and holding it above his head. Standing well over six feet, Goku had a hard time reaching it. "What's that, monkey? I didn't hear any magic words."
"Damn it, Gojyo!" The boy jumped again, managing to grab a hold of the man's wrist. "Relinquish the toast!"
Startled, Sanzo's head snapped in his charge's direction. Seeming equally baffled, Gojyo let his teammate drag his arm down so Goku could wrench his prize free.
At their expressions, Hakkai smiled. "That means he wanted you to give it up, Gojyo."
"I know what it means," the half-breed sneered, quickly recovering his wits. "I was just surprised his tiny animal brain had enough room to fit the word in."
"Shut up!" Goku launched himself at the man, and the fight was only broken up by two piercing gunshots and a biting threat from the irate priest.
A fluke, Sanzo decided as he settled himself into the passenger's seat. He had never seriously expected Goku to remember any words he didn't already knew. That one simply must have stuck in the back of the boy's mind, explaining why he had remembered it. There was no way it would happen again.
Two days passed in relative peace. On the third day they received a surprise visit; for once not from random demons, but from the group behind the usual attacks. Naturally, an appearance by one of their stronger rivals excited Goku, and it was because of him they fell into the usual round of fighting.
Busy was he was pacifying the prince's brat sister; Sanzo hardly gave the main battle a second thought. From the corner of his eye, he made sure to follow everyone's progression, but for the most part everything was normal.
Until the outburst.
Startled, Sanzo's head shot up; even Lirin's curiosity was piqued enough to turn her head toward her baffled brother and his smirking opponent.
Goku continued without pause. "Abandon hesitation and start brawling!"
One of Kougaiji's eyes narrowed skeptically. "Excuse me?"
"What's amiss with you?" Goku demanded. "I related, let's get crucial!"
Silence hung over the makeshift battle arena like sudden death.
First, the meaning of the words had to sink in. Though they weren't exactly the most difficult of vocabulary to understand, the use of so many in so few words was enough to make anyone stop and think. Then the prince had to absorb the fact that, no, those words had not come from Hakkai, or Sanzo, or even Gojyo. Finally, he had to match his opponent's face with the voice to make sure he wasn't having auditory hallucinations.
At least, that was what Sanzo assumed went through Kougaiji's mind. Since the youkai prince wasn't hard to read, the priest would have bet money -- and a good deal of it -- that he was right.
Kougaiji's brow twitched. He turned, obscuring his expression with shadows. "Lirin... Dokugaku... Yaone." He seemed to twinge with each name. "Let's go."
Even Lirin seemed unnerved enough to go quietly. She cast worried glances over her shoulder, and only when they had rapidly distanced themselves a good few meters did she ask loudly, "What's wrong with the monkey?" In response, Kougaiji clamped a hand over her mouth, and then they were gone.
Puzzled, Goku looked at the rest of his teammates. "What was that about?"
Sanzo tried to refrain from smacking the boy silly. Unsuccessfully. By the end of the day, his charge was whining and nursing four new welts on his head, one for each ridiculous word that had tumbled out of his mouth. But the incident had done exactly what Sanzo had not wanted it to do: make him worry about Goku's mental state.
The damn monkey.
After that, the word games ceased. Hakkai became the translator for Goku for a few days; unfortunately, at the rate the boy was learning new words, even he became lost when trying to interpret Goku's sentences. Worse still, Goku seemed pleased with his higher vocabulary-- even though a good deal of the time, the boy clearly had no idea what context he was supposed to use certain words in. The fact that nobody really understood him didn't appear to bother him whatsoever.
"Gojyo, may I supplicate you to transfer the shiv into my phalanges?"
The redhead snarled, slamming his hands on the table as he stood. "I don't know what the hell a shiv or flange--"
"Phalanges," Hakkai murmured.
Gojyo ignored him. "--is, but I will shove these utensils up your ass if you don't talk like a normal person--" At this point he threw his chopsticks at the boy's face. "--you stupid monkey!"
Seething in his seat, Sanzo rubbed his throbbing temples. While he had hoped for more variety in their arguments, this was even worse. He would choose monotony any day over the ridiculous words Goku spouted now.
To Hakkai, he asked through clenched teeth, "Do you have any idea what he just asked Gojyo to do?"
The green-eyed youkai considered the question, seeming unperturbed by the background noise of Gojyo and Goku exchanging as many insults as physical blows. Even so, there was a slight but noticeable crease in the man's brow that hinted at a headache.
"Well," Hakkai finally said. "I can only assume that he wanted Gojyo to pass something."
A long pause passed between them as they exchanged looks. Then Sanzo stated flatly, "At the risk of sounding like someone here... that's not what it sounded like to me."
Hakkai's smile was more strained than usual. "You are not alone."
With the hopes of retreating to his single, private, solitary room for the night, in reprieve from the mayhem he was reluctant to admit he had unleashed, Sanzo left the table early. A cigarette calmed his nerves enough for him to hope for sleep that night.
The knock on the door crushed the idea.
Sanzo closed his eyes, twitching as the intruder opened the door without waiting for an invitation. "Sanzo?" Goku's voice sounded slightly off for some reason, but the priest was too busy trying to keep his fingers from spasming to really care. "Can I come in?"
"You're already in," the man grumbled, crushing the butt into an ashtray. Five minutes. He'd give the boy five minutes to talk like a normal person, and if he passed, then Sanzo might not have to beat him senseless.
"I... have something really important to tell you," the boy said after a moment's hesitation.
So far so good. Sanzo folded his arms.
Goku took a deep breath. "Sanzo... we've remained concomitant for an unequivocally time immemorial... and I verily desiderata to divulge you paramount substance."
What the hell Sanzo twitched, but didn't reach for his fan. Despite the brunette's onslaught of stupid words, he had heard a "we" in there. That made the situation even worse, because though it had something to do with them, and thus him, he had no idea what his charge was trying to say.
Goku edged closer, his voice hopeful. "I certainly find you congenial. Not in a conciliatory fashion. It's augmented to that... aggrandized!"
Now he was just being creepy. Sanzo got to his feet before realizing he really had nowhere to go.
"Sanzo... I adulate you. I cognize your conclusion of my being a grommet... but I ken what I innervate! So... what do you ruminate?"
The boy finished with wide eyes, a silent plea shining through that Sanzo had no hopes of interpreting. The man stared.
Wordlessly, Sanzo grabbed his cigarettes and left. He had a headache.
Sleep didn't want to grace him that night. Insomnia raged in his veins as the man struggled through Goku's words. Half of them he forgot and the other half he couldn't figure out the meaning of, no matter how hard he tried. By the time slivers of light snuck over the horizon, his eyes stung, his head throbbed, and he was no closer to solving the puzzle.
Exhausted, he reluctantly dragged himself to breakfast, where he had no appetite for anything but a piece of buttered toast.
"You look like shit," Gojyo complimented. Sanzo shot him a withering look powerful enough to make the redhead immediately pretend he found the wood grain on the table fascinating. Muttering an incoherent curse, Sanzo bit angrily into his breakfast.
Goku sat down almost as soon as the priest was finished with his toast. Sanzo avoided the boy's gaze, but even that didn't stop the impending question.
"Sanzo, you never answered me last night."
How the hell could I answer when I didn't even understand the question? Sanzo ground his knuckles into his skull, trying to keep his temper in check. With his fuse already made short from the lack of sleep and Goku's incessantly annoying vocabulary, it was truly a difficult feat to accomplish.
Somehow, he managed to keep from striking the boy or saying anything until they had to leave. Even then it was just a curt, "Let's go." In his wearied state, Sanzo hardly saw anything past the doorknob. All he wanted to do was get in the jeep, pray for silence, and take a day-long nap if at all possible.
Instead, he opened the door and ran into someone with a clank. Only it wasn't Sanzo who clanked, because he had nothing on him to make such a sound.
His bad mood was made even worse as the voice following the mild collision. "Well. This is quite the pleasant surprise."
Ignoring Goku's exclamation, Sanzo stepped back and shot the god an irritable look. "Nothing pleasant about it," he snapped.
Bi-colored eyes glinted wickedly as the god smirked. "Oh, I disagree. In fact, I cannot think of another entourage I would rather bump into on such a fine day. Especially," he continued with a leer, "when my two favorite people are a part of that entourage. Konzen."
Outside, the sun shone in brilliant streams, feeding the cold earth with its warm rays. It would be a nice day on the road, if they ever got there. Nice enough, in fact, to have a picnic, which they may have ended up doing.
Sanzo hardly noticed or cared. He scowled, completely disagreeing with Homura's statement. He could think of a thousand other people -- off the top of his head, no less -- that he would have rather met today. Or any day, for that matter. It wasn't just because the man was constantly getting in their way, delaying the mission west (though that was admittedly a big part of it) but his smug attitude pissed Sanzo off. On top of that, the man was constantly talking himself in circles-- and who the hell said "entourage" anyway? Aside from Goku, of course--
Sanzo caught himself before the thought completely escaped. He paused, mulled over it, broke the idea down to several components and considered each and every bit of it. His elongatedsilence likely rose eyebrows. He was sure he heard Gojyo muttering behind him, but at the moment he didn't care.
He spun to face Goku, glaring. "You," he said, pointing at the boy. "Talk to him like you've been talking to us."
Behind him, Homura asked with a note of genuine curiosity, "Is something wrong with him?"
"He's broken," Gojyo sneered.
Goku tilted his head, appearing mildly confused at the order, but he shrugged and looked at Homura anyway. "Wherefore are you existent? Are we efficacious to oppugn additionally?"
The ebon-haired god blinked. He tilted his head, a slight frown on his face. His expression was strangely more thoughtful than puzzled. Then he said, "Not presently. I sustain auxiliary memoranda to accumulate." He cocked an eyebrow in Sanzo's direction. "What did you say was wrong with him?"
Sanzo stared. Though he knew it was rude, he realized his jaw had dropped, if only half an inch. He couldn't help it. Even Hakkai had reached a point in which he had been unable to understand -- much less translate -- Goku any further. But this man, this god, this crazy bastard, not only understood, but spoke the boy's bizarre language fluently.
In other words, he was their last hope.
Without thinking, yet knowing it was the only way to save them, Sanzo roughly grabbed Goku by the arm. He shoved his confused charge in the god's direction. "Fix him."
Homura easily caught Goku before he fell. The brunette stared up at the man, shrugging; somehow his nonchalant attitude vexed Sanzo further.
Goku made a face. "Sanzo... must I acquit myself?" The glare his master shot him in return seemed to answer his question (whatever the hell it was) because the boy clamped his mouth shut.
The god mused for a moment. "May I keep him if I do?"
"I want him back in an hour," Sanzo said uncompromisingly.
He growled. "We're leaving town shortly."
Homura spoke with the tone a parent would use on a particularly stubborn child. "You forget, my dear Konzen, that I am a god." He patted Goku's head as though he were a puppy; in response, the boy gave him a quizzical look, but didn't pull away. "I know where to find you."
Sanzo closed his eyes. The pulse in his temple was twitching again, and he knew that if he had any hope of getting Goku back to normal, he would have to cooperate. To an extent.
Through his teeth (as it seemed to happen often lately) he said, "Two hours."
He loathed Homura's responding smile more than anything right then. It reminded him of a mischievous cat that had just received the delicious fish it had tricked its master into giving. Threading his fingers through Goku's hair in a subtly possessive manner, the man said silkily, "I will return him in two hours, then-- with pleasure."
Then, before Sanzo could decide whether or not he wanted to change his mind, the two were gone.
One hour and forty-five minutes. Fifteen minutes left.
Silence reigned the jeep, but it was not the silence Sanzo had been craving for the past few days. He had just wanted Goku to stop saying stupid incoherent things, and now there was just dead silence. Behind him, Gojyo fidgeted. To his right, Hakkai occasionally hummed. Sanzo himself had already gone through six cigarettes.
Fourteen minutes left.
Abruptly, Gojyo said, "Two hours. Kinda makes you wonder what he has the time to do, eh?"
Sanzo did not like the half-breed's tone. He resisted the bait. Twelve minutes.
"I imagine it takes quite a bit of time to unteach what has been taught," Hakkai reasoned. It was okay for him to respond, thought Sanzo irritably. Gojyo's comment wasn't bait to him; more like a refreshment.
And now he was making food comparisons without having to try. Sanzo made a mental note to hit Goku for that, when -- or if -- he came back. Even if it wasn't directly his fault.
"How long can it take?" Gojyo scoffed. "Just slam the kid's head into a rock a few times."
They should have done that, Sanzo realized. It was too late for that now, of course...
"The easiest remedies are not always the best," admonished their driver.
"Slamming his head might have only driven out the simple words," Sanzo said, despite his earlier resolve not to get involved in the conversation.
Gojyo groaned at the prospect. "A fate worse than death, as they call it..."
A long pause followed his statement, and then a collective shudder ran through the group. Even the jeep seemed to tremor.
Five minutes left.
The simple greeting threw everything into chaos. Taken aback, Hakkai slammed the brakes, which caused the passengers to be thrown forward. Sanzo swore loudly before he crashed into the dashboard, and behind him Gojyo hit the back of his seat. Snarling, the priest looked over his shoulder.
Homura smiled, seeming unperturbed. "I have returned to give back what is yours," he said, patting the boy beside him. Both were perched comfortably on the side of the jeep-- well, Homura was, in any case. Goku's posture was mildly awkward, but Sanzo was too unnerved by the glaze over his golden eyes to notice right away.
"What the hell did you do to him?" he demanded, before noticing something. "And why is there dirt on his face?"
The ebon-haired man tilted his head at the boy. Indeed, there was a large smudge of dirt over Goku's left cheek, as though he had been slammed hard into the ground.
"Oh. That." Homura waved a hand dismissively, nimbly stepping out of the vehicle. "I had to pommel him rather roughly. He was quite stubborn; absolutely refused to forget the more eloquent words he had learned."
Seeming as unconvinced as Sanzo, Gojyo leaned forward, grabbing Goku's wrists and pulling his arms up. The boy allowed him to, making a small, unintelligible noise. His dazed expression was beginning to look disturbing.
"Pommel, huh?" the redhead asked dubiously. "Is that why he's got more dirt on his arms?"
And his knees, Sanzo saw. He glared at Homura; in response, the man held up his hands, though he didn't bother to hide his sneer.
"Do not ask questions you do not truly want to know the answer to," the god said sagely. "Which reminds me, Konzen--"
"Sanzo," the blonde corrected.
Homura ignored him. "I managed to translate what Son Goku said to you the other night."
"How the hell--"
"And it seemed to be--"
"--did you know about that--"
"--something of a--"
"--you creepy bastard?!"
Behind him, Gojyo snorted. Hakkai politely made no such noise, but a brief glance told Sanzo the man was trying to hide a smile.
He himself was dumbfounded. "What?"
Homura smirked. "In any case, he should not utter those words again anytime soon-- and if he does," he paused to pat Goku on the shoulder, "you know where to find me."
"No, we don't," Sanzo said irritably.
As Homura turned to leave, Goku suddenly snapped back to attention. He whirled around, shoving Gojyo off him roughly. The redhead swore, but Goku didn't seem to care. "Hey! Homura!"
The addressed god stopped, glancing back with an eyebrow quirked in a silent inquiry.
Goku inhaled deeply, then blurted out, "Terminate! You must comminute me furthermore antecedent to your vamoosing!"
A soft breeze tousled the men's hair. The sun glimmered merrily. In the distance, a lizard skittered across the desert sands. Somewhere, miles away, a fortunate person lived a fortunate life that was, fortunately, peaceful and quiet.
"My apologies," Homura finally said, striding back and pulling Goku out of the jeep. "It seems I am not as finished as I thought I was."
The two disappeared for the second time.
"Hey," Gojyo suddenly growled indignantly, as though realization had just then dawned on him. "He's really sexing our monkey!"
Sanzo wondered if suicide was considered sinful enough to put him in the deepest and darkest pit of Hell.
Quiescence. A soft intake of breath. A heavy sigh.
"Say any word," the priest hissed without opening his eyes, "that is longer than six letters, and I will beat your head into next week."
Goku whined. "But I'm starving--"
A papery smack reverberated through the air. "That's more than six letters!"
So continued the journey west.