Vannen: Make note, never and I mean never let a kitsune near your CD collection.
Hiei: I did offer to kill him for you, but would you listen?
Vannen: I still need him for the story. However if he puts so much as a scratch on one of those CDs, I'll let you fillet him.
Hiei: chuckles evilly
Youko: Who told you that you could work on this?
Vannen: Do you want out of this torment?
Youko: At the moment I'm quite enjoying this. Now hurry up, you still have work to do.
Vannen: muttering Stupid fox with my CDs. You'll pay for this if it kills me.
Youko: What was that? Holds CD menacingly
Vannen: Nothing! I own nothing but Raven. Have fun reading all and thanks for all the reviews! I look forward to all that are still to come.
Detention, Centaurs, Incessant Banging, and Training
"They were wha'? And ye're gonna give 'em detention fer it?" Jin inquired laughingly after listening to Professor McGonagall. When Touya gave him a disapproving look, he coughed into his fist and shut up. Apparently, Harry Potter, Ron Weasly, Hermione Granger, Draco Malfoy, and Neville Longbottom had been out of bed after hours and now the woman was going to give them detention. She was asking the staff whom would be willing to have the students pay their time with them.
"I'll take 'em," the half-giant Hagrid said. "I could use a 'and t' look int' the dead unicorns."
"Dead unicorns?" Touya inquired raising an eyebrow, his interest sparked. "If you don't mind, we'll come as well." He motioned towards Jin and himself.
"Tha's no' necessary, Professors."
"Please," Touya said calmly, "I insist."
"Alrigh', but I'm warnin' ye, it ain't safe in th' Forbidden Fores' afte' dark." The large man said.
"Well, if that's settled, the students will join you after dark. I'll send them all notes at breakfast telling them where to meet you." McGonagall shuffled some papers on her desk, obviously dismissing the people present.
"Ah, Professors, there ya are," Hagrid said, slinging a large crossbow over his shoulder. Jin and Touya walked into the small patch of light shed by the lantern the grounds keeper held. Harry, Ron, Neville, Draco, and Hermione walked sulkily in between the two youkai. "Alrigh' there Harry?"
"Yeah," was all the young man said in reply, trying to distance himself from the blonde youth from Slytherin without anyone noticing.
"Pardon me, Hagrid," Touya interrupted gently, "but Jin and I will head into the forest now. I'll sketch an arrow into the ground in which direction we head. If we find anything, we'll send up some sparks," the ice mage pulled out a nine-inch wand made of pine with a yeti's hair for a core and led Jin into the forest without another word.
"Nice, cozy, cheerful!" Jin commented as he looked around the dank and dark forest. Touya chuckled slightly as he continued walking. When he considered them a fair distance from the edge of the forest, he turned to his over-enthusiastic partner.
"Take to the air, but stay out of sight of the students and Hagrid. Stay low, look for something out of the ordinary. I mean, out of the ordinary in the wizarding world in the Ningenkai." Touya shook his head; this mission was really getting on his nerves. At least Koenma wouldn't send him to prison for not making sure that Harry was safe.
Before Jin could get his feet off the ground, the two heard a scream and saw red sparks shooting into the air. Without hesitation, they raced back down the path, searching desperately for the students and Hagrid.
"What happened?" Touya demanded as he skidded to a halt in front of the group a few moments later.
"Oh, nothin' really," Hagrid said, "Malfoy jus' scared Longbottom." The tall man glared at the blonde.
Taking a deep breath, Touya fixed the student with his intense gaze. "The harder you make this for all of us, the longer you'll be out here. I suggest you stop your foolish antics before I give you detention that you will serve under me." The ice mage was truly pissed.
The student glared back, not backing down from Touya's threat. Apparently, the boy thought he was above the teachers.
"Calm down, Touya," Jin whispered in Japanese to his friend. "The lad'll get wha's comin to 'im." The windmaster tugged the ice mage's arm to get him to move. "We still have work to do."
Resisting the urge to growl, Touya turned on his heal and headed back into the forest, Jin at his side. "Get flying Jin," he said after a while. "Let's get this over with. I want to go home."
"Alrigh'," Jin said and jumped into the skies, hoping to find nothing out of the ordinary. "Jus' don't go gettin' yer self killed!" He called back as he zipped out of sight in a flurry of winds.
"Some one should be telling him that..."
Touya jumped to the side and turned, forming a blade of ice over his hand, preparing for an attack. He was confronted by the sight of a tall, very tall, fox demon with silver hair, ears, and tail, along with golden eyes.
"Youko," the ice mage confirmed as he looked at the kitsune. "You're right," he added with a slight smirk. Then he thought of something. "Where's Raven? Doesn't she join you on these little "outings" of yours?" He looked around, trying to find a sign of his old partner in the Shinobi.
"She found a werewolf brave enough to take her on."
"Shouldn't you be watching her?"
"The Forbidden One is."
Their conversation was interrupted further when a cry rent the air. Touya looked over his shoulder in the direction that the noise came from. "Potter," he realized and spun, racing to reach the boy before he was killed.
Galloping hooves caught his attention as he watched the path in front of him for felled trees. A centaur was racing in the same direction. A bolt of fear was quickly suppressed. Centaurs were peaceful creatures for the most part, although why one would be heading in a direction that might involve him in human affairs was beyond Touya. They had a reclusive nature.
Chasing as quickly as possible, Touya caught up with the centaur as it leapt over a small mound and charged at a crouching and cloaked figure. The ice mage searched frantically as he hurtled over the mound as well. The centaur warded off the creature, lashing out at it with his hooves threateningly.
"Professor Touya?" A shaky voice called quietly behind him. Harry sat leaning against the knoll, a hand on his forehead.
Smothering a sigh of relief, Touya nodded.
"Are you all right?" The centaur looked down at Harry with concern, and offered a hand, which the boy took, helping him to his feet.
"Yes- thank you- what was that?" The boy looked at the spot where he had seen the creature.
"I haven't a clue," Touya murmured. "I better get Jin." He looked at the centaur. "Can you take care of him for a moment? Until Hagrid, Professor Jin, or I come here?"
"Yes, yes, of course," the centaur waved him off with a dismissive air. Touya nodded thanks and walked back into the forest. A good distance away, Jin landed next to him.
"Did ye get a good look a' wha' attacked the lad?"
"No, I was hoping you did."
"Nay, I didna even see its face."
"This just becomes a bigger riddle by the day," Touya murmured. "Come on, let's find Hagrid. We'll head back into the castle and tell Koenma what we saw." The two set off in search of the gigantic human.
"Kurama's still sleeping?" Keiko asked incredulously, "He'll miss herbology!"
"I know," Yusuke answered and looked around for any eavesdroppers, "but remember last night was the full moon." The two sat outside on a bench, working on their homework and talking in their ten-minute morning break. Koenma and Botan were standing off to the side, conversing with Jin and Touya about the happenings of the night before and Hiei and Yukina were sitting under a nearby tree, helping each other on their own homework. Raven hadn't been seen at all that day either.
"It seems that there's something in the forest that has the centaurs spooked," Koenma told the Keiko and Yusuke as he came over with Botan trailing swiftly behind him. "What ever it was, Jin and Touya didn't get a good look at it."
"Harry and Ron believe it to be He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named," the four looked towards the source of the voice. Kurama stood there, hiding a yawn behind a hand, his other hand held his book for their next class. He looked a little worse than he normally did. A few scratches showed on his face and arms, his hair was a bit of a mess, and his left eye had a little coloring around it.
"Nice shiner," Koenma commented offhandedly, looking at the new bruise across the kitsune's eye.
"What happened to you?" Yusuke asked in surprise. It wasn't often he saw Kurama injured in such a manner.
"Might I suggest never taking on an allied group of werewolves when you've promised to only use brute strength? It wasn't one of my more brilliant ideas. Don't worry, Yusuke. They turned out worse than I did, I assure you." He absent mindedly rubbed his side as if he was hurt and winced. Apparently, the kitsune had a few cracked ribs for his trouble.
"I'll keep that in mind," the Tentai murmured as he gaped at the redhead.
"What was that about Harry and Ron?" Koenma inquired, trying to get things back on track.
"Oh, yes, well," Kurama hid a second yawn and switched to speaking Japanese, "he and his friend Ron Weasley believe this creature to be Lord Voldemort. They also believe him to be in league with Professor Snape."
"I wouldn't be surprised," Yusuke grumbled thinking of the greasy potions teacher that he had, rather swiftly, learned to despise with every fiber of his being.
"He does seem the type," Koenma remarked as he rubbed his forehead. "I hate this Wizarding World," he finally burst out. "I can't find anything about it. My Book doesn't have anything recorded into it! I want answers!" The demigod wasn't too pleased.
"You're not the only one," Hiei had joined the group at some point in the conversation.
"Now Hiei, think of everything you've learned."
"Hn. That all humans, wizard, witch or normal, should perish the most horrible death I can think of?"
"I'm not even going to bother replying to that."
"Good." The Koorime turned and started heading for the green houses, seconds after, the bell rang, signaling the end of the break and summoning everyone to classes.
"Where is that incessant banging coming from?" Hiei wondered as he walked through the halls back to the Ravenclaw dorm after classes. Forget dinner, he wanted to train for the next few hours to take the edge off his anger towards the Malfoy kid. The stupid human had tried to flick mashed potato into the youkai's hair. If he didn't do something soon, he would end up killing the next thing in sight. Entering the common room, he saw Raven hitting her head against a wall.
"What in Makai are you doing?" Hiei queried, cocking an eyebrow slightly.
Each syllable Raven spoke was punctuated by thud as she continued beating her forehead against the stone, "I can't reach my energy. Something's blocking it." Her motions didn't waver in their rhythm.
"And you think beating the crap out of your head will help?"
"No, but I haven't any other ideas." She finally stopped and turned towards the Jaganshi. "You have a better one?"
"Hn. Just don't hurt yourself too bad." The demon walked up to his room to retrieve his practice katana. It was heavier than his actual weapon. The purpose of it was to make him stronger. Once he had what he wanted, he leapt out of his window and onto the slick, tiled roof of the castle. He wanted the challenge of keeping his balance on the treacherous heights.
He hefted his blade and started through an easy pattern of strikes and blocks. His slow rhythm steadily increased in complexity and speed as the minutes ticked by. As he spun, bringing his blade down over his head, his weapon connected with steel. Raven stood there, blocking his sword with a dirk. Hiei recovered from his surprise just in time as her other dirk was swung at his chest.
"What are you doing up here?" He inquired as he slid off to the side, bringing his weapon up into a neutral position.
"I'm going crazy. I need to do something." Raven replied. "It really sucks not being able to reach my energy."
"You'll only get hurt up here." Hiei warned.
"I know, but I need to work on my balance and speed. The best way to do that is to be thrown into a bad situation."
"At least she has sense," Hiei thought as he lunged. He made a conscious effort to slow down to a speed where he would continue to push Raven's skills without killing her but not to the point that she would be insulted.
The fight continued for hours, Hiei pushing Raven to her limit. He had already disarmed her and "killed" her three times but still they worked. Hiei was preparing to slide his blade into a small opening in Raven's defenses when the girl slipped on the smooth tiling of the roof.
She went sliding towards the edge. With a quick thrust, she plunged her blades into the surface and held on as she prayed for them to grip on something. Three feet from the edge, she stopped her descent. Sighing in relief, she started to stand only to be knocked to the side.
Hiei rolled to the side, keeping a grip on Raven's shirt. With a quick jump, he regained his balance, unsheathed his katana a second time, and spun to ward off a flurry of blows that was aimed at the two.
Careful study of Hiei's opponent revealed the creature to be around five feet tall with short, spiky bright orange hair, yellow eyes, fangs, and clawed hands. A cat's yellow tail swished behind it to help keep balance and yellow ears twitched from side to side, catching every bit of sound. A youkai neko faced off against Hiei, holding its own in the fight.
"Stay behind me," Hiei growled to Raven. The last thing he needed was for her to slip and fall or be captured. "Hold onto my cloak, don't pull on it." He didn't so much as feel the slightest tug, marking the event of Raven doing as she was told. A quick glance over his shoulder confirmed his suspicions.
She wasn't there. With a vehement curse, he turned his back on the youkai nekoand went racing along the edge of the roof, hoping she had turned, ran, and slid off somewhere and was now holding onto the edge. After sprinting along half the length of the roof, he stopped, pulled off his bandana and started searching for her with his Jagan. By giving a copy of his false eye to Raven, he had formed a sort of bond. He would always be able to find her unless she was shielded by something with more power than he possessed.
There it was, the small tendril of power leading into the castle. Fending off a blow from the neko that had caught up with him, Hiei called mentally, Where in Makai are you!
Trying to get away, was the weak, slurred and slow reply. Something grabbed me, put some foul-and I mean FOUL- smelling cloth against my nose while you were fighting and- the connection was cut abruptly. Hiei realized the girl had been knocked unconscious.
"Blast!" he hissed and stabbed the neko in a nonexistent opening and received a deep gash down his left arm and another across his face, leaving four parallel, bloody scratches for his carelessness. He spun on his foot and headed straight for the Gryffindor common room, hoping to find Kurama there for a little help.
"Hiei! What happened?" The kitusne jumped to his feet and rushed to the closed window to let his friend in.
"I hate cats," was the only reply Kurama received. "Come on, Raven's been kidnapped."
"WHAT!" The two turned and saw Yusuke and Koenma in the doorway. Koenma's face and ears had turned a bright red in rage that would rival the color of a certain fox's hair. "GET HER BACK NOW!"
"Watch Harry for me, Yusuke. His enemies might take this chance to come after him if they know about us and our purpose, which is unlikely."
Yusuke nodded his response and Hiei and Kurama left the common room at a dead run, Kurama's dog Moyasu on their heals, following the small trail of energy that Hiei was able to find with his Jagan. Hiei piled on more speed, threatening to leave Kurama behind him. Both knew what was at stake here. If they didn't get Raven back, they'd end up back in Rekai prison. Something neither of them wanted to do and the human world could easily be put in grave danger.
Vannen: Buahahahaha! Victory is mine! Continues to laugh maniacally.
Youko: I'll get you for this. Nurses collection of bruises
Vannen: Yeah, yeah, I've heard it about six times already. But now you don't have anything to hold over me. I got my CDs back.
Vannen: You'd think the king of thieves would be able to guard his treasure from a young human like me, but he apparently can't.
Youko: I still say you cheated.
Vannen: Alright! I admit it! I gambled with him. I told him I'd be his slave for a week if he could beat me at a card game. If I beat him, I got my CDs back. You should have known better than to comply. Only one person has ever beaten me at Phase 10.
Youko: Because you cheat.
Vannen: I've never cheated at that game! Continues to argue.
Yusuke: Well, while they're busy and Hiei continues to be his normal self, I'll take care of the end! R&R all! Vannen! Stop trying to kill the fox!
Vannen: Holding Youko in a headlock. Thanks all! Ignores Yusuke. Let
Shuuichi have control you moron!