Author: Anonym aka Yen
email: y_no_m@yahoo.com
site: http://www.geocities.com/y_no_m

YnM Fanfiction
"First"

Disclaimer: YnM belongs to Youko Matsushita-sensei.


It was a warm lazy day.

Underneath the widespread canopy of a fanowell tree, a youngster yawned widely and stretched long before rolling and rubbing his lithe lean body against the fragrant grass kept cool in the shade.

The fluttering of a large colorful butterfly distracted him, and he blink when the same insect landed on his nose. For several moments, they both regarded each other silently before the larger fellow blew off the other.

Stupid insect.

Shaking his head with insolent grace, he stood up, arching his back in another long stretch. He yawned again; then, sputtered when the butterfly settled on his nose once again.

Dumb bug.

Before he could swipe at the offending butterfly, it took off to flutter in rather haphazard circles around him before landing for the third time on his nose.

Eh...?

A twig snapped behind, and he whirled, claws ready and fangs barred.

"Aie! You're scary!"

He was stunned when whoever it was screamed, pointed at him and ran away.

***

Tsuzuki barely ran a few meters before something landed on his back, knocking him hard into the ground.

"Aah! Aah! Don't eat me!" He wailed, arms and legs flailing. "I don't taste good! I'm thin! I haven't eaten for days!"

He froze when an upside-down face dropped down in front of his eyes.

"What makes you think I want to eat you?" It said.

Tsuzuki blurted, "Because you're hungry." His panic was dying down; he began to feel the uncomfortable pain in his back. He winced when it, who was obviously sitting on his back, shifted its weight and paused when Tsuzuki's stomach growled very loudly.

***

Byakko laughed, falling off the stranger's back to roll over and over on the ground with glee.

"Sounds like I should be the one to be scared of being eaten!"

"It's not funny!" The stranger scrambled to his feet, looking very embarrassed and very upset. "Being hungry is not funny at all!"

Byakko stilled when tears suddenly flooded the man's eyes, and he began crying. "... It's not funny. I'm so hungry..."

Concerned and never one who likes to see tears, Byakko got up and went over to pat the stranger's shoulder consolingly. "There. There now. Stop crying. I'll give you food."

"Really?!" Byakko was shocked badly when the tears disappeared instantaneously to reveal wide shimmering purple eyes.

"ARIGATOU!!!" Byakko choked when he was hugged very tightly around the neck.


Later, in his residence, Byakko watched with admiration as his guest single-handedly finished an 18-course meal.

"Such an appetite..." He heard one of the gathered servants whisper.
"Indeed," replied another, "But such uncouth behavior I've never seen such bad eating habits since Byakko-sama was a cubling.
"Shh!" The most senior manservant reprimanded them before inquiring softly, "Will you be dining as well, Byakko-sama?"

He had intended to. Byakko chuckled, shaking his head with amusement. "No, tell the cooks they can rest now, and you are all dismissed as well. I will attend to Tsuzuki-san alone."

"Hai, Byakko-sama."

***

Tsuzuki frowned ever slightly as the servants went away leaving him alone with Byakko. The other noticed his frown and grinned, gesturing for him to continue eating. His long striped tail wound and unwound reassuringly.

This is Byakko-sama...

Tsuzuki turned his eyes back to his food and continued eating; his mind continued thinking.

... He doesn't look like a God...

Byakko smiled widely and preened.

***

"How long have you been here, Shinigami?"

Byakko sat down on the baluster, threw a leg over it and leaned against one of the short columns that divided the baluster. From his position, he could see the whole of the courtyard fronting his residence. In his hand was an apple he managed to save from the feast.

"About two weeks now, I think." Tsuzuki was standing beside him, mouth opened slightly, marveling at his surroundings. Byakko noted with amusement that he hadn't seem impressed when they had arrived at his home. Too hungry to notice perhaps.

Byakko blinked when a butterfly suddenly fluttered by his face, tickling his nose and causing him to sneeze.

Tsuzuki chuckled. "Bless you, Byako-sama," he said, extending a finger to the butterfly, which gracefully landed on it.

"Thank you," he murmured to it. Noticing Byakko's puzzlement, he smiled warmly and explained, "It led me to you."

***

Tsuzuki craned his head upward, looking at Byakko who was lounging lazily in the tree branch located considerably high up over his head. The God was chewing thoughtfully on his apple and didn't even seem to notice him below.

Tsuzuki lowered his head, massaging his neck muscles, feeling worried and uncomfortable.

What do I do now?

He started when something bounced off his head before falling to the ground. It was an apple core. He looked up just as Byakko asked, "Why are you here, Shinigami?"

***

"Your own Shikigami...?" Byakko mused, repeating Tsuzuki's words. Below, Tsuzuki nodded. His eyes were trained directly at him, and Byakko wondered about them. They were such serene eyes.

"Who have you got?" He asked.

Byakko nearly fell out of the tree when Tsuzuki shook his head and smiled sheepishly.

***

"You've been here for two weeks," Byakko was saying with outraged disbelief, "and you're telling me you haven't even met one Shikigami!"

"I met you," Tsuzuki answered defensively.

Byakko waved his answer away. "No, no. I don't mean it's your fault." He was irked. "I meant that you should at least have met someone in here much much earlier. We, Shikigami, pride ourselves of being hospitable folk."

Tsuzuki blinked and tilted his head thoughtfully. "Oh, I did meet someone."

"Who?" Asked Byakko.

"He didn't tell me his name," Tsuzuki replied.

"... Well, what did he look like?"

"Uh... let me remember... He was about this tall, wore old Chinese clothes, had weird eyes. I thought he was just a kid, not a Shikigami." Tsuzuki's face turned blank, just as it had when Byakko introduced himself. "I never thought Shikigami would look like ordinary people."

"Now you know better." Byakko smiled, his humor returning. "That must have been Souryuu's boy, Kijin."

Tsuzuki's jaw dropped. "... Souryuu-sama has a son?"

"Actually, he's expecting another one soon, but Rikugou says this one will be a girl."

Tsuzuki's eyes were wide, and he stared at Byakko silently.

"... No!" Byakko yelped, then stated stoutly. "I don't have kids, and I'm not married either."

"I didn't say anything," Tsuzuki said, grinning.

Byakko rolled his eyes. "Don't deny that wasn't what you were thinking."

"Nah. Didn't even think about it. You're not the type girls would marry."

"And why do you think that, Shinigami?"

"You have bad breath."

***

"Gomen! Gomen nasai, Byakko-sama!" Byakko had Tsuzuki in a headlock. "I take it back! You don't have bad breath. You have the most fragrant breath I have ever smelled in my entire existence. I'm sure girls are forever stalking you just to have the opportunity to take a whiff of the perfume your lungs create from plain air. Gensoukai is a hundredfold better because of yo-"

"Oh, shut up!" Byakko yowled, releasing him abruptly. "I prefer honesty, Shinigami, not idiocy."

Tsuzuki looked miffed. "Idiocy?! That was poetry!"

Byakko blanched. "-perfume your lungs create from plain air. That is poetry?"

"It impressed you enough that you remember it," said Tsuzuki.

"It was so awful, I could not help but remember it," Byakko countered.

"Ah me and my fellows." Tsuzuki pressed his hand against his heart, his expression, crestfallen. "Suffer we artists must in humble beginnings."

Byakko bit his lip as Tsuzuki continued. "But I accept it wholeheartedly! In suffering, I will receive the greatest inspiration and produce the highest art. When I am gone and buried, pe-"

Byakko roared with laughter. "You forget, Shinigami. You are already dead!"

"Details. Details." Tsuzuki smirked slightly. "So you were paying close attention to my poetry after all, Byakko-sama?"

Byakko froze, laughter cut in mid-chortle. "..."

*POUNCE*

"Gomen! Gomen, Byakko-sama!"

"I admit, Tsuzuki-san. An artist you are indeed; a comedian!"

***

A few days, Byakko comes out to the terrace just as Tsuzuki was about to go down the steps to the courtyard.

"Tsuzuki, leaving without a good-bye?"

The insult he felt faded when Tsuzuki turned to smile so warmly at him. "Hai, Byakko-sama, that was what I planned to do." As always, his eyes met his serenely. "I am afraid that if I see you before leaving, I might never leave."

"... Tsuzuki-"

"Thank you, Byakko-sama, for your hospitality." For a moment, his eyes flickered away. "I have to go. I must find a Shikigami of my own before I return to my world. I have a duty to Dai O-sama."

"... I see." Byakko frowned.

I don't want this one to leave.

Clear regret in his face, Tsuzuki bowed low to him, straightened, turned and walked down the steps.

I have never met anyone so honest.

Midway.

Someone who likes me and doesn't fear me.

Tsuzuki had reached the bottom, and was now walking across the courtyard.

"Tsuzuki-san!"

He stopped and turned. "Hai, Byakko-sama?"

"Will any Shikigami do for you?"

"... I don't know." Tsuzuki suddenly looked uncertain. His next statement floored Byakko "I really don't know much about Shikigami"

"... IDIOT!"

"... Stop that! I get enough of that back home!"

"Didn't you even research about us?!"

"... Uh... no... They threw a good luck party before I came here."

"... So you don't even know what elements you're compatible with?"

"..."

"... Baka."

"I am not!"

***

In Souryuu's Residence.

"Preposterous!"

"Father please, your temper."

"From a low-level Shikigami, I would accept such a decision, but not from one of the Four Gods!"

Byakko winced but held his ground. "It is my choice, Souryuu."

"Not if I have anything to say about it. This Shinigami is not even an adept; a mere trainee!"

"He is already a full-fledged Shinigami, Souryuu," Byakko corrected through gritted teeth.

Souryuu's eyes flashed. "Not even the greatest of their kind has command of a God! You grant him this favor out of pity, not reason."

Byakko turned to walk away. "You cannot stop me, Souryuu."

"... If you had never intended to listen, Byakko, why did you come here?"

Byakko paused before answering, "The test requires a witness. I came here to ask Kijin to witness."

"Denied!" Said Souryuu triumphantly. "I will not allow my blood to have part in this foolishness, and I will make sure the others will refuse as well."

Byakko glanced back. He barely kept from growling at the craftiness in Souryuu's eyes.

"I know why you came here first, instead of to that idiot Rikugou," Souryuu said softly, "He's on a journey to the farthest corners of Gensoukai and won't be back before your Shinigami's deadline. Rest assured, I will keep you from making this mistake, Byakko"

His hands clenched tight, Byakko walked away.

***

You desire friendship above all else. You will find what you seek. My saying this will make it real. Walk on, Shinigami.

***

In Byakko's Residence.


Byakko stared helplessly at Kijin. "Could you pick another test, please?!"

Kijin shook his head and said solemnly, "I respect my father's wishes even as I go against them in secret. If you do not agree to the condition that I choose the test you give the Shinigami, I will not help you further."

Byakko's shoulders' slumped. "There's no way Tsuzuki can pass this," he said mournfully.

Kijin tilted his head. "If you have such faith in this one so great, why do you have so little confidence that he will pass this test."

Byakko sighed. "It's not a question of faith in him. All of his kind has this reaction. It's their instinct. They cannot help it. Tsuzuki will not be able to control his instinct."

Kijin considered silently before shrugging. "If you say so, Byakko-san, but please hasten. I must return home before dinner."

Byakko's face sagged. "... All right. All right. No choice. Please go tell Tsuzuki to prepare himself. ... Could you at least warn him a little?"

"... Very well, I will tell him to expect you."

"That won't help!"

***

The Test

Tsuzuki --- "... KAWAII!!!"

*HUG*

*THUD*

Kijin --- "He passes. Tsuzuki, Byakko is now yours to command."

With a look of contentment on his face, Tsuzuki nods dreamily, giving the unconscious white tiger a tighter squeeze.

End?

Sequel Available