Heyla, everyone. This is a new area of fanfiction for me, but I simply had to jump into it. I was addicted to Chrno Crusade the moment I picked up the first two manga at my local bookstore. I've seen part of the anime, as well. Unfortuneately, someone already ruined the ending for me (before I even touched the series at all, actually), but I'm still in love with it, regardless.
My focus? The intricate and complicated bond between Chrno and Rosette. You'll probably be seeing quite a few one-shots from me based on the two of them, including this one. I've actually come up with a few ideas before this particular fiction came to mind, but I decided I wanted to start with this. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it.
Summary: She'd been having strange dreams lately. Restless, she took a nightly stroll. And she found him in the common room, reading. But the more he refused to acknowledge her, the more she desired his attention. (CxR)
The moon's full and reflective surface couldn't have shone any brighter through the sheer curtains of the small and silent room.
And Rosette Christopher couldn't have felt any more restless.
How many hours had she spent uselessly tossing and turning about? The sheets were already a rumpled and tangled mass at the foot of her bed, forgotten. And her legs were strewn off to the side, feet dangling helplessly over the right edge of the bed. The sleepless nun released a frustrated growl into the pillow her head was currently flopped face-down upon and slowly raised her tired and reddened eyes. She whimpered softly and turned over, lying spread-eagled in her thin cotton nightgown as she stared at the ceiling.
As much as she enjoyed sleeping (perhaps even a bit too much, as far as Chrno and the Order were concerned), lately the sweet bliss of dreams would not come. No, two seperate things plagued her sleep. There was no peace. Nightmares haunted her unconcious state endlessly. She couldn't escape them no matter how hard she tried, she couldn't run from them or block them out, she couldn't... she couldn't...
Sometimes her brother would visit her in the dreams. And everything would start happy and carefree, like old times. A tinkle of laughter, a simple smile, a kind word. And then the screaming. The echoes of his pained cries assulted her to no end. Flashes of Joshua's face. A different kind of laughter, colder. His clothes would be stained in blood, just like that night at Seventh Bell.
And always, he would say the same thing.
"I'm strong, Rosette. I have power and I'm happy now. I don't need you anymore."
I don't need you anymore.
She promised to protect him. It hurt to hear him say those things, even if it was just an illusion her mind created in its dormant state. Rosette hastily wiped a tear that had formed in her eye and sighed.
The other dreams she had been having, on the other hand...
She couldn't really call them nightmares, she thought with a blush. Strange as they were, the gun-toting nun had to admit she almost enjoyed them.
Rosette abruptly shook her head furiously at her own thoughts, the color in her cheeks darkening further. Why would she enjoy something like...that, especially when it involved the violet-haired demon?
His young appearance had disappeared. So suddenly, in fact, that Rosette recalled screaming in alarm when she first caught sight of him that morning. And in seeing her shocked expression, the demon had panicked. "Rozetto, calm down," he pleaded with a defensive wave of his hands, afraid that her wordless and open shock would shortly turn into a beating upon his noggin. "The Elder assured me this form would consume no more of your Astral than the child one."
How dense could he possibly be?
Rosette had eyed him carefully, her mouth still open in shock. He was easily a head taller than she was now, if not more. The same purple hair lay braided behind him, slightly longer than before. Likewise, his pointed ears remained. But his face was now more angular and had lost the pudgy, childish cheeks. And there was a slight slant to his crimson eyes that hadn't been there before.
He was handsome, to put it lightly.
Rosette's cheeks flushed all over again as she recalled the said incident. Sure, she thought his demon form was also attractive, but it was child Chrno she had grown accustomed to seeing. Only now, it had seemed as though he'd had a growth spurt.
It was then the dreams had started.
His newest form had somehow twisted its way into her dream world. If she wasn't having a nightmare about Joshua, she was dreaming of a Chrno she was certain her subconcious had created. He would do things, say things that were, were...
Tempting. Exciting. Aggressive. Spontaneous. Mysterious. Dangerous. Sexy.
Her breath quickened from the recollection of those dreams, her heart pounding steadily and heavily against her chest. Chrno wasn't...like that. He still acted the same way around her, day to day. The smiles, the jokes, the Chrno she knew remained despite the drastic change in appearance.
Why had her subconcious suddenly painted him into something different? Was this her own doing?
No, of course not! If it was anyone's fault, it was his!
Anger crept into her veins from nowhere and she sat up, furously throwing her legs over the side of the bed and stalking toward the door. If she didn't blow off this steam, she'd never get any rest tonight.
Rosette was faintly considerate of the others in the girl's dorm as she carefully edged the door to her room open and stepped out. She'd simply go and pace around the common room for a little while and perhaps warm her cold feet by the fire. Nodding silently to herself, she crept through the hall and continued down the stairway.
Everything was quiet and still. In her energetic state, Rosette nearly considered making as much racket as humanly possible, just to break the eerie silence. The only thing that effectively halted her was a vision of Sister Kate yelling at her about disturbing the peace and demanding she write several apology notes. Sweatdropping from the thought, her bare feet carried her into the dimly lit common room. She sighed audibly, certain she was far enough from the dorms that she could at least breathe freely now without having to watch her back for Sister Kate's highly displeased form. "What a pain," she said, a slight note of irritation in her voice.
The blonde demon exorcist jumped in surprise, automatically reaching for the holster where her gun would normally be positioned. However, due to her current attire, her hand merely grasped a fistful of white fabric. Damn, she cursed inwardly. Swallowing the lump in her throat, she lifted her azure gaze to scan about the room.
She quickly turned to the acute noise, adrenaline pumping and ready to face whatever was lurking in fire-lit room. But her eyes merely met the back of a chair, positioned next to the fire. She took a small step toward it, and her blue orbs soon caught sight of something bright hanging over the arm of the red chair.
A yellow ribbon.
The nightgown-clad girl nearly fell to her knees as relief flooded her system. "Chrno, you nearly gave me a heart attack," she chided, annoyance lining her tone. She waited for the apology from her violet-haired demon friend, as he was sure to provide at any moment.
But he did not respond.
Aggravation heightening, Rosette stomped over to the side of the chair, hands on her hips. Chrno sat there, seemingly oblivious to her and the rest of the world as a book lay open in his hands. There was no title on the book itself, she noted, only able to glance at the cover. She blushed as her eyes traced his older form, casually reading in his simple black nightwear, but quickly shook it off. "Chrno," she tried again, her voice still even so as not to wake anyone nearby unexpectedly.
The rustling noise was revealed as he calmly flicked another page and continued reading, still refusing to acknowlegde his Contractor's presence.
A vein throbbed in her temple. How could he be so stupidly absorbed in a book? Irritation won over her actions as she quickly swiped a hold of his braid and yanked the end.
She thought she heard a grunt of displeasure from the demon, but his crimson eyes remained fixed upon the book and he still refused to regard or offer her any form of recognition.
If it was one thing Rosette hated, it was being so openly ignored. Two more veins throbbed in unison with the first, her face constricting dangerously. How dare he try to ignore her! This was almost as un-Chrno-like as those weird dreams!
She suddenly smiled wickedly. Thought he could just flat out ignore her, did he? She'd show him.
Kneeling next to the chair, she stuck out her index finger and poked his cheek. In return, he sighed and turned another page of the novel he was engrossed in. Rosette's grin widened as she continued to poke his tanned cheek over and over. No one could stand this type of silent torture very long. He would break under the pressure, she'd make sure of that.
...But after a full three minutes of useless poking, the young nun wasn't sure which had taken more abuse, his cheek or her poor finger. Frustration re-energized, she swiftly grabbed the offending demon's cheek and pinched it between her thumb and forefinger.
And yet again, he remained glued to the book.
Rosette Christopher was not one for giving up. No, not even when she appeared to be fighting a hopeless battle. Determination set into her features as she rolled the sleeves of her nightgown up. The blonde teen boldly took a stance right before the seemingly-oblivious bookworm and cleared her throat. He propped his arm up on side rest of the seat, his hand supporting his chin as he turned another yellowed page. The irritated Rosette apruptly reached out with her hands, which each respectively snatched a hold of one of Chrno's pointy ears, and pulled outward on both ends. Another strangled grunt escaped the demon's throat, but he merely batted her hands away like one would to brush off a fly.
Anger welled more vibrantly inside Rosette. He was so casually refusing to acknowledge her, no matter what she did to grasp his attention!
It was time to change tactic.
"Ku-Kurono," she whimped pathetically, a sob releasing dramatically through her throat as her eyes focussed on the floor at his feet.
This was the ticket. He was sure to apoligize for having upset her. He was so soft-hearted, afterall. Adding another strangled sob for good measure, she carefully lifted her gaze.
He hadn't so much as moved a muscle. Rosette gritted her teeth as he drew another page back and yawned. Had to lay it on thicker, did she?
"You...You like that book more than talking to me, is that it?" she asked, lacing her tone with dejection.
She paused for a reaction and yet was not rewarded.
Guilt. Make him feel guilty, Rosette. Bite his conscience in the arse!
"I came looking for you, Chrno. I had a nightmare." It was half-true, she mused. "And...And yet you're so selfishly absorbed in an old book that you can't even speak to me."
He crossed one leg over the other as he turned his head to the side, the book following his line of vision as he changed position.
Rosette's world turned red and she lost all rational thinking. With a furious growl of anger and frustration, she drew back her fist and thrusted it forward with great speed, sure to deck the ruby-eyed demon right in the nose.
Rosette blinked once. Then twice.
Her assult reached a barrier. A dark-skinned hand blocked its path, simply and effectively.
She drew her fist back, as though burned by the contact. Had he just openly defended against her attack? Her surprised blue orbs searched his face as he too drew back his hand. No, his eyes hadn't moved. They were still rivetted solely on the object he favored over her.
Refusing to give in, she threw another spontaneous punch toward the violet-haired demon.
Again, the same offending hand raised to oppose her, blocking her pathway to Chrno's impassive face.
Her cheeks puffed out in futher annoyance and she pulled her fist back once more.
Or rather, tried to.
Fingers had curled down around her fist, imprisoning it. She pulled back roughly, attempting to dislodge it once more. But his grip was stronger than hers. Rosette's eyes searched his face desperately. What was he playing at?
His lips curved upward ever-so-slightly, eyes still trained upon the book.
Her mouth fell open in dumb shock. Was this really Chrno? The actions and demeanor of this doppleganger were completely unlike him. At least, unlike the Chrno she knew. Now that she thought of it, he was a quite a mystery. He rarely shared his thoughts or feelings about anything. She had simply assumed the behavior he had exhibited before her, until now, was his true self. Perhaps...she had been wrong?
Her heart suddenly leapt into her throat.
Somehow, this was reminiscent of the Chrno in her recent dreams.
Hesitantly, she let her gaze lift from where his hand was still clamped securely over her fist, back up to his face. The smirk was gone, she noted. Slowly, she pulled her right arm back again, but his grip remained firm as ever. Her heart continued to pound from her racing thoughts and she dared a glance at his face once more.
Fire met water in a clash that nearly sent Rosette to the ground with a yelp.
His gaze was steady. This version of Chrno seemed to have a deeper shade of eyes than she remembered. Or maybe it was the lighting. Whatever the case, she felt her breath catch in her throat. It was not a furious stare, nor was it bathed in kindness. It was different.
She had his attention now. That's what she wanted, wasn't it? She'd been bugging him so heatedly all this time. And yet...Rosette Christopher found that she wanted nothing more at the moment than to shrink and disappear altogether. But she could not tear her eyes from his. They were drawn and held captive.
The perfect description of his crimson orbs at present. What was he thinking? Why was he looking at her like that?
His voice was calm and even, but it was not a request. The tone was deeper than she remembered, laced with something she couldn't decipher. Normally, she'd just haul off and pound the little devil on the head, wouldn't she? Of course she would! But...
The devil wasn't so little anymore.
Her insides squirmed uncomfortably. No, he definitely wasn't.
"Rosette," Chrno interrupted her contemplation. "Sit."
Complying wordlessly, she lowered her nightdress-clad form to the carpetted floor before the chair, breaking her gaze from his as she did so. He finally released her hand and his legs uncrossed, each repositioning on either side of her. Before she could even think to question him, something touched the crown of her head. Risking a glance back up at him, she realized his arm was outstretched, hand resting lightly on the top of her head. A cryptic smile played on his features as his hand gently smoothed the silky blonde strands of her hair. And he repeated the gesture several times.
Rosette felt her cheeks heat considerably. Was he...petting her? Incredulous as she was to such an idea, she felt herself sigh in pleasure. It really was a nice feeling. Her eyes slowly closed of their own accord.
"My precious Rosette."
It was barely above a whisper, but her eyes snapped open immediately. Had he said what she thought he had?
The inquisition in her cerulean eyes was met by a strange twinkle in the depths of his crimson orbs. The same smile still played about his lips, the flash of a fang glinting underneath.
Teasing. Inviting. Daring.
If possibly, her face flushed an even deeper color. What in the world was he playing at?
"Eh?" she sputtered.
"Why are you hesitating, Rosette?" The same smile remained fastened to his lips, as though he were amused. "Your speech, your actions. You have the attention now, my Rosette. What's the matter?"
Was he taunting her? But...he was right. Why was she being so submissive all of a sudden? Absentmindedly biting down on her lip, she knew the answer. That form of his had thrown her offguard. The dreams...
"You...Well, you..." she stammered awkwardly, blushing to the roots of her hair.
Oh, how she wished he'd stop smiling like that! It was getting unnerving, to say the least.
"You...look, um...weird," she finished lamely, not meeting his gaze.
"It didn't seem to bother you when you first found me here," he commented.
"Well, you were acting differently, too," she said softly.
"Does this form bother you?" he inquired curiously, his grin widening a fraction.
"I don't know if "bother" is the right way to put it..." the words slipped out of her mouth before she could stop them. Instinctively, she held a hand to her mouth in surprise of her own words.
"Oh?" he spoke lightly, brushing a strand of fine gold hair behind her ear. "Then what might be the right way, my Rosette?"
She couldn't find the words. Or couldn't speak them, at least. But he already seemed to know this would be the case.
"Do you mind me taking your initiative for a change?"
She favored him with silence, until his hand cascaded slowly over the side of her face, eliciting a small gasp from her lips. The fingers came to a rest just below her chin, where they curled beneath and coaxed her face upward. She complied and her gaze locked with his intense crimson eyes once more. He was leaning down toward her slowly, eyes half-lidded as the descent continued. Rosette felt her own eyes flutter closed in anticipation, her heart beating as though she were running a marathon.
Her firey inner conscience was screaming at her. Hit him, Rosette! Beat him into oblivion! Squash him like a-
Everything melted away when his lips finally reached hers. He pressed gently at first touch and she returned the gesture, pushing up to meet him. That seemed to be all the assurance the devil needed. He deepened the kiss, an urgent pressure and longing erupting like fire to consume them both.
This wasn't like her dreams, Rosette realized. Oh no. It was far more enjoyable.
The dying embers of the fire cast wicked shadows around them as they explored the sensations of each other's touch. The nun never registered when exactly her arms had securely fastened themselves around his neck, or when his hands had buried themselves in her hair. This was passion. This was longing.
And it ended too quickly.
His breath was ragged and her bottom lip was swollen, but the enjoyment they had experienced was clear. Crystal clear.
Rosette opened her mouth to say something, but he pressed a finger to her lips gently.
"We'll go exploring again another night," he promised, a wicked grin crossing his features.
The book lay open and forgotten on floor, blank pages reflecting the last of the fire's light.
Well...that took quite a turn once I actually started to write it. And ended up a good deal longer as well. I apoligize for what you might consider to be OOC. I merely decided to explore a different side to Chrno, not necessarily a dark side, though you could consider it that if you wanted. I did imply Chrno was actually expecting Rosette to find him that evening. After all, the book was revealed not to have any words printed in it. Hehe.
I hope you enjoyed reading it. Turned out more angsty than I had orginally intended, but I'm still happy with it. Write what you're compelled to write, ne?
If you'd be kind enough to review, I'd be very grateful. This is my very first Chrno Crusade fanfiction and I've been having kittens about it. I have quite a few more ideas for CC fanfiction, but I want to see how this one goes over.
Thank you for reading.