Disclaimer: I don't own.

/blah/ means telepathy

'blah' mean thoughts

"blah" means speaking

AT THE PARK

Kurama and Sakura ran through the empty park, their tails bobbing in the wind. Sakura tackled Kurama and the two foxes rolled and tumbled through the soft grass. After about half an hour of this, both foxes flopped onto the grass panting.

/That was fun, Onii-san./

/Yes, it was. I had almost forgotten how much./

/How long can we stay out/

/Since tomorrow is Friday, we can stay out for a few more hours./

/All right./ Sakura tackled her brother again and using the element of surprise, managed to pin him.

Kurama pushed her off, nipped the tip of one of her tails, and took off running. The female fox gave chase but soon lost sight of her brother. She stopped running and all of her senses were alert. He was somewhere close-by. Suddenly, Kurama jumped down from a nearby tee and landed on top of Sakura. He playfully nipped at one of her ears. She used the tip of one of her tails to tickle his belly, which caused him to jump off of her.

/That was playing dirty, Sakura./

/And hiding in the tees wasn't/

/No, it was sly./

/Nice./ Sakura yipped and ran off with her brother pursuing her.

A FEW HOURS LATER

Sakura and Kurama both jumped into the tree next to Kurama's open window, but only Kurama jumped into his room. He turned back into Shuichi, collapsed onto his bed, and fell asleep.

THE NEXT DAY, AFTER SCHOOL

Kurama was walking home with his brother.

"Did you see mom's look this morning?"

"Yes. It was confusion and … something else. I could not quite place it."

The two brothers entered their home with the (unison) call of, "We're home."

"Shuichi, I need to talk to you about something."

"Yes, Mother." Kurama entered the living room where his mother was sitting. "What is it?"

"I saw you last night, Shuichi, when you became that human-fox and then the large fox soon after that."

"Mother, I do not know what to say."

"It's all right, Shuichi. I had a feeling that there was something supernatural about you lately. I just want to know why you didn't tell me earlier."

"I did not know how to tell you. I was concerned how this news would affect you. Would you like me to start from the beginning, Mother?"

"Yes, that would be nice."

"My truest name is Yoko. I am a fox. A spirit fox gaining the powers of a demon over the hundreds of years that I lived. In time, I became bored and passed my hours learning the art of breaking codes and seals. Ancient treasures were my favorite sport. But fifteen years ago, I made a careless mistake and was badly injured by a strong pursuer. With the last energy I had, I escaped to the living world and became Shuichi, knowing that if I could withstand humanity for ten years, my spirit energy would have time to safely recover. Then I would escape without a trace. Then you fell ill and I couldn't leave you. I love you too much to ever leave you."

Shiori walked over to Kurama and hugged him. "I love you too, Shuichi."

After talking with his mother, Kurama felt a tremendous weight lift from his shoulders. He knew he could live the rest of his life in living world with no regrets.

Fin