Disclaimer: I own it not. But now I DO own a hot picture of Chrono with Greg Ayres's autograph! (Insert fangirl scream here)

Author's Note: So I went to the ACen convention yesterday. It was SO much fun! I am one happy fangirl right now, too (see disclaimer). Anyone else go? I was the Rosette in the nun hat walking around with Satella. (I was so happy to see other Chrono Crusade people there! There were, I believe, four other Rosettes and three Chronos. There were even these three six-year-olds dressed as Rosette, Chrono, and Azmaria! They were SO ADORABLE!)

Anyway, sorry I haven't updated Double Trouble for so long! I've been busy with school and other one shots. But all of those one shots are almost finished, and the essay I've been working on for English is almost done, so I should have a chance to update DT in the near future. Please try to be patient!

And to keep your attention, I proudly present this new one-shot— which is one that I've wanted to write for a while: a longer version of the ficlet "Dark". Enjoy!

(PS. I just watched the Carnival Episode on DVD 5—and the part with Chrono and Rosette under the stars? Yeah. I cried. I really, really cried. Bravo to both Hillary Haag and Greg Ayres, because the way they preformed that scene was absolutely superb!





When he looked back upon that night, that night so long ago, he first tried to stick the blame on the heat. Oh, the heat. . . so vicious, so virulent. It had a strange sort of power, that heat: coiled into tendrils of fire which hung heavily, invisible, in the dusk air.

But one could feel them. Oh, how one could feel them! Those ropes of raw, smoldering temptation—as white hot as any inferno. He could feel them, those loops of desire; catching his arms, legs, fingers, toes—the knots tightening painfully around his body.

He dismissed them. Ignored them. Assumed that they were only the results of the sticky summer weather: the muggy torridity that had been draped over New York City like a woolen blanket. He did not realize, in those last, consequential moments, that the burning sensation that coursed through his entire form that evening had nothing to do with the elements.

Instead they were connected to her—the child in the flimsy white night gown peaking around the door, blonde hair ruffled and shoulder straps slipping. Pale skin glowed like the stars in the violent violet night—the twilight glow that was spilling through the windows at this very moment; accented by the beams of light emitted from the blood-red moon.

A soft wind blew through the devil's partially open window, rustling the milky cotton curtains and carrying the sweet chirping of the katydids. The final, wispy scents of dogwood, too, seeped into the room; the trees behind the glass loosing the rest of their blossoms.

The end of innocence.


Before he knew what was happening, she'd taken her regular place in his bed—curled into the little groove she'd created for herself on the mattress. Slumber embraced her moments after laying down. . . but slumber wasn't the only one.

He could not help it. The heat, that unbearable heat—why was it now growing stronger? Now, now that she fixed herself beside him, so sweet and so pure, her flimsy summer pajamas only proving to be a hindrance, rather than a help. How could it have helped? It hid nothing. Nothing at all. Her long, shapely legs; curled lightly around the forgotten sheets; were completely displayed, the fabric having risen during her shifting. Her chest, which had for so long been flat, now showed the sure signs of development: two small lumps pushing against the weak cloth. Her arms, graceful and thin and bare, were intertwined beside her relaxed face; connected to small shoulders and a smooth collar, interrupted only by two thin strips.

In the darkness, he felt himself swallow hard. Something was tightening around his chest, like a lasso; and in the same moment a flame flickered to life inside his abdomen. His eyes traveled leisurely down her young body, hands twitching without reason.

Or, rather, without a reason he'd actually admit.

Her pink lips, full and soft looking, began to move against the pillow she rested upon, airy words spilling from her mouth every so often. Her hair—short, silky, pale gold—fluttered slightly after every breath, cupping her face and caressing her chin like a lover's hand.


It was surreal, this moment: watching this angel as she slept, as he had so many times before. Yet, no other time—and there had been many others—had the longing in his heart been so poignant. The aching in his chest so unbearable. The scorching tingle of his flesh so vehement. His eyes flashed, blood growing hot beneath his tanned skin.

But not only because of her. Because of himself.

He was afraid.

For he; against all of his morals, his values, his beliefs; wanted to touch her. Oh, he wanted to touch her so badly— to love her and show her how much he cared. How a body could crave another. How greatly he wanted her, needed her, longed for her.

To feel her. . . her chest rising, falling, beneath his own; her heart beating; her limbs quivering; her back arching.

To hear her. . . her moans oozing from her mouth; her groans catching; her winsome voice saying his name.

To . . .

His claws, which had already dug deeply into the mattress, clenched. By now, his own breathing had grown ragged—he knew he had to stop— but he couldn't help it. He could only continue to watch this girl, his Contractor, sleep softly; dread filling him. She was unsafe here, beside him and all of his carnal desires—the ones programmed into him at birth. Male devils mate with healthy females. She was a healthy female—body still fertile after her monthly blood.

His body screamed for her.

His mind pushed him from her.

His heart was torn.


He couldn't take it—this emotion running through his body; like a giant snake was wrapping itself around every inch of his innards, squeezing and writhing and injecting its poison. Liquid lust. Want. Desire.

He fought. Oh, how he fought! Tried his very best to forsake his cravings, roll over—sleep—leave.

But he couldn't. He couldn't tear his eyes away from the little girl, the child that was already his everything, the angel that had saved him from his lonely fate. He loved her.

Which was why he hated himself for what he knew he was about to do.

With a speed he'd forgotten that he possessed, the demon all but pounced; pressing himself to her delicate side and pulling her laced arms apart, holding her wrists in his trembling grasp. She did not stir, as he knew she wouldn't—he being the one that had to wake her up every morning— only released a soft sigh.

His fingers tightened, muscles tensing. . .and then releasing, in the form of his foot pushing off against the wall. They were close, tight, together in this strange position: she snoozing lightly and he resting upon two-thirds of her side. Their mouths were mere centimeters apart, breath mingling as the sweat on their skin mixed. She smelt like candied violets and cinnamon. . .and he wondered if she tasted like them, too.

The katydids' shrill song echoed through the bedroom, the maroon rays of moonlight causing their bodies to glimmer with an unearthly glow. He could only see in the color red; that scalding, impure hue. . . watching her lips through the semi-darkness, already parted and inviting. It was delicious, spiteful torture. . . temptation.

A temptation that he succumbed to within seconds.

Without realizing to, he snarled possessively: flattening his mouth to hers in the most urgent of ways. The feel of flesh on flesh was indescribable, the blaze that seared his skin burning all the brighter as he heard her give a tiny murmur beneath him: a murmur that sounded like his name.

He kissed her again, more passionate and salacious that before, his hands yanking her limbs completely from her chin and trapping them on either side of her face. As he did so, he threw a leg over her hip, balancing his weight; straddling her without touching her.

But he didn't notice he was doing this, so lost in the embrace. . . and in surprise. For somehow she had instinctively known how to respond: returning a bit of sleepy pressure as he plunged his tongue inside, exploring the honeyed caverns of her mouth. So velvety, so warm. . . so right.

So wrong.

Oh, so very, very wrong!

He tugged away quickly, his glazed eyes focussing when he came to his senses. A jolt of horror shocked the desire out of his body, causing him to fall away from her for good. Watching her in absolute panic, the devil began to berate himself—pray to God that he be punished. He was a Sinner. Such a Sinner! In so many more ways that one. Undeniably evil.

Sinner. . .

The word reverberated through his numb mind: taunting him, teasing him, cursing him. How horrible he was! Such a vile, disgusting creature! A creature full of nothing but lechery and gore.

At least. . .

At least. . .

At least, that was what he thought.

What he had thought all of his life, had repented for, had cried for. Had felt he was whenever he saw his Contractor, that time and later. . . Every moment, in fact, till the day he'd discovered the courage to tell her. Tell her what had happened that night under the bloody moon, while the katydids sang and the summer heat hung like layers of flame.


That was what she'd called him after he'd finished recalling the incident; his crying cut off by her 16-year old body pressed flush to his 12-year old form, a smirk playing on those full pink mouth.


His eyes widened, entranced by the desire that glittered in his angel's sapphire pools.

You are a Sinner, Chrono. . . Tongue darting out to taste his salty cheek, she watched him intently. He squirmed beneath her, shivers running down his spine. She chuckled; lowering herself to his ear. . . And I want to be a Sinner as well.

He froze, body shuddering. Glancing upward, he allowed their gazes to lock, both consumed by unspoken passion.

And when he kissed her then, there was no question in the way she responded.

He had always hated being called a Sinner. Hated the way it made him feel: the regret, the pain, the disgust. But now. . . now, when she spoke that word, called him by it, whispered it heatedly into his pointed ear while his hands roamed her body, and hers explored his, he couldn't help but growl his approval.

He was a Sinner, her Sinner; wrapped in her body and encased in her love. He was a Sinner, her Sinner; allowed to touch and caress her flesh in the most forbidden of ways. He was a Sinner, her Sinner; permitted to breathe words of dirty temptation into her soul . . . and to act upon those promises.

He was a Sinner, her Sinner.

And now, she was a Sinner too.