Warnings: None.

Disclaimers: Yu Yu Hakusho belongs to people who are not me. I have nothing worth suing for. Don't bother.

Mighty Long Time

Sometimes I hate the human race.

Don't think I'm not capable of it. I'm cheery, not brain-dead. I've got eyes.

See, Death's got this role, right? We go in and pick up people's souls fresh from the shell. So we see... well. It gets pretty gruesome. All the horrors in the nightly news and on the radio, the things mentioned in forensics TV and crime dramas: it's all true, and worse. A "Grim" Reaper would break after only a few months. You need to be like me. A cheerful outlook, a white-knuckled grip on the little happy things...

It helps against the sights of the job.

Years of neglected patients, weeping bedsores and dead of thirst. Suicides: guns in the mouth, slit wrists, strangulation hangings. Drug addicts, thin and shaking and so, so desperate. Children, beaten and starved. Murder, torture, war, bombings, disease, famine, accidents, stupid accidents...

Even the good deaths, the beloved grandparent quietly slipping away in the night, at home, there's nothing good about them. I've seen wives, husbands, sons and daughters, small children... I've seen them all find the body, sometimes still warm, and sometimes their screaming echoes in my ears when I try to sleep after a busy shift at work.

But then, there was Yuusuke.

I mean, the guy was reprehensible... ha, bet you didn't know I knew that word, did you? He was about as low as you can get without being criminally disgusting. And he goes and gets himself killed to save a little kid, completely out of the blue. Dumps half his life to save a criminal demon's mother. And so on.

You (well, I) have to pretty much bribe him to go in on a planned rescue, but if he's right there and doesn't have a chance to think, he just jumps in to help without a second thought. It's incredible. It's uplifting. It's one of those things that a Reaper just has to grab at and remember forever.

And trust me... forever is a mighty long time to me.