Everything I'm Not
Disclaimer: I don't own YYH!
Chapter 11: I Love You, Onna
"Underneath all those death-threats and insults, you're no different from the rest of us. You experience the same things we do; you feel the same way we do. You cover up your emotions and harden your heart, but behind that cold exterior, is a person I admire. More than admiration … I-"
"Don't," He warned.
"I've fallen in love with you, Hiei."
"You shouldn't have said that," Hiei said in a strained voice as he grabbed her shoulders.
Her eyes widened. "What?" Botan hardly had time to think as she was pulled closer towards Hiei, and his lips were on hers.
Their kiss wasn't anything like Botan had expected. It was rough, despite his soft lips; fervent, yet restrained. She could tell he was holding himself back. His hands were traveling slowly to places that made her want to melt into him and Botan couldn't help herself as a small moan escaped from her lips.
Hiei snapped back to reality when he heard Botans small mewl. He took a deep breath, trying to control himself.
"…Hiei?" She questioned, unsure of what to say next. She was flushed and out of breath.
The fire-koorime looked disgusted with himself. How could he enjoy it so much, when he knew this was wrong? It wrong on so many levels, but to him it felt just right. He was not supposed to be doing this with her.
"Onna, you don't know what you're doing."
Her wide eyes gazed into his own and it only infuriated him more. She was so innocent and he was tainted. Could she not see that?
"I'm not… I'm not who you think I am." He advanced closer and Botan didn't know why she felt like retreating. It was suddenly like the mood had changed completely. Reflexively Botan took a step back.
"You don't know the terrible things I've seen." At his words Botan continued to step back until the walk blocked her movements.
"…The things I've done." He grunted cynically. "If only you knew you wouldn't look at me the way you do. You would loathe me if you did."
Her amethyst eyes widened as she shook her head. "It doesn't matter." Her voice was barely a whisper, but she knew Hiei heard her. Botan mentally kicked herself at her wimpy answer, but it was all she could say at the moment. She needed to get through to him.
Hiei's crimson eyes narrowed upon hearing her small confession. He grabbed her shoulders and roughly pushed her against the wall. Forceful enough to scare her, not enough to cause harm. With his hands still on her tensed shoulders he stared right into her eyes.
"You're not listening, onna." He growled. "For all you know I could be the same ruthless demon you met all those years ago. I could slit your throat and not cast you a second glance. That is who I am. I haven't changed at all."
Botan's gaze was just as intense as his. She showed no fear of backing down. "I know what you're trying to do. My mind is already made up, Hiei. I love you for who you are now, not who you were back then." Her voice had regained its normal tone and she no longer whispered. She was sure of what she was saying.
"I've killed people, countless people. Without fear or hesitation, I did my job and I did it well. I never felt regret. I only moved on." His voice became gradually louder with each sentence. "I didn't care that I had taken life. It was my duty and I fulfilled it. Is this the man you love?"
She stared straight into his eyes and there wasn't a trace of apprehension or uncertainty. "Yes."
"And you're telling me…" His face moved inches away from her. "…that you aren't afraid of me at all. You know what I'm capable of. You know the gruesome things I've done. And you're not afraid?"
"I'm not," Botan answered unwaveringly with a spark of determination in her eyes that Hiei had never seen before. Something in him snapped and he couldn't resist her anymore. The sight of such a pure and strong-willed woman dissipated all of his restraints. She was no longer the easily manipulated ferry-girl that he could scare with just one glance. She held no ounce of fear towards him, and she knew exactly what she was getting herself into.
His hands moved from her shoulders and wrapped around her waist, pulling her to him. He claimed her lips for the second time that night, but it definitely wasn't the last.
Botan woke up that morning to the phone ringing incessantly. She shot up from her peaceful slumber only to feel colder than usual. That's when she noticed… she was naked. Her eyes widened as she wrapped the covers around herself. Memories of last night flooded her mind and she blushed as she eased her way back to reality.
She looked to the empty spot on the bed only to find Hiei had already left. He was probably out training or something, she figured. Smiling a little, the ferry-girl got up from the bed and into the bathroom. She was in need of a nice long shower.
Kurama was in his room sipping some coffee when Hiei appeared at his window. Last night had been a late one, what with Yusuke and Kuwabara making his room "Hiei and Botan HQ." It was ridiculous; they had come up with all sorts of absurd plans to get them together, despite Kurama telling them to leave the two alone. He was tired, groggy, and a tad on the frustrated side. Those two never learn. And to top it all off, the poor kitsune had to wake up to get ready for an event at Genkai's Temple.
He turned to Hiei and opened his mouth to speak, but something was different about him. He looked even more smug than usual. "Something the matter, Hiei?" Kurama asked good-naturedly as he took another sip of his morning coffee.
At Hiei's answer, Kurama's eyes widened considerably and he spit out his coffee, coughing a bit. When he got over his little choking episode, Hiei was already gone. His mother had called for him through all the commotion.
"I'm fine mother," He called down to her, inhaling slowly. The other demons blunt declaration was at the forefront of his mind. 'The onna and I mated last night.' Kurama shook his head as he looked towards the windowsill where Hiei previously stood. That demon was something else, dropping such a big bomb on him and acting as though it were nothing. But Kurama had already grown used to Hiei's antics. If he had relayed the information in any other way, then the redhead would have been truly worried.
Elsewhere, Hiei was making his way back to Botan's apartment. He figured he owed it to Kurama to tell him, seeing as the fox was the one who helped him out a great deal last night. When he woke up he decided he would get a little training done, tell the kitsune, and return before Botan woke up.
When Botan finished showering and got dressed, the phone was still ringing. She picked it up and to her delight, it was Keiko.
As Hiei walked through the door he noticed Botan was on the phone and slipped in quietly to his room. After getting his clothes and towel he made his way to the bathroom, not wanting to know if Botan would pass on all the details of last night to the girl. He knew Botan was a blabbermouth and ningen gossip between women was common. He didn't understand why ningens told every detail of their life to others, and he wasn't about to stick around to hear if Botan would do the same.
"I've been trying to call you since last night, Botan. What's got you so busy?"
"Uh… well you see it's just that I was really busy last night. I had lots of things to do. Yup, lots of things to do." Botan babbled on, her usual cheery voice filled with anxiety.
Keiko was a smart girl; she put two and two together. "Botan… did you and Hiei…" She trailed off not needing to finish her sentence.
Botan nodded then let out a small, "Uh-huh."
The brunette squealed. "That means everything worked out! Tell me everything! I want every last detail. Who confessed first?!"
At her last question, Botan faltered. Then it was her time to let out a frantic squeal. "What is it?!" Both Keiko and Hiei said at the same time; Keiko through the phone and Hiei through the bathroom door. He opened the bathroom door and stuck his head out, concern etched through his features.
She waved Hiei off first. "It's nothing, you can go now. I'm fine, really!" She smiled to him and he just shrugged as he closed the door.
"Keiko!" Botan whispered, not wanting Hiei to hear her. "I told Hiei of my feelings first, but I don't recall Hiei ever saying he loved me back!
"Oh no! Are you sure?"
"Positive! I know I'm a bit scatterbrained at times, but even I would remember something like that!"
"…Maybe he just forgot?" Keiko questioned trying to remedy the situation. "I mean he's got to feel the same for you if you two slept together. I'm sure of it. Plus, Hiei isn't the mushy type. Maybe he just needs some time?"
"Thanks Keiko," Botan said her sullen tone striking a chord in Keiko's heart.
"Oh that's right I forgot. I never did tell you the reason why I called so much, did I?" Keiko teased.
Botan blinked. "No… I suppose you haven't."
"Well we're all at Genkai's right now. I called last night to invite you, but well… you know why I didn't get through. You both should join us. We can talk some more face to face and try and solve this whole situation."
"That's great, we'll be there!" Botan completely brightened at the thought of a get together. At the moment, she wanted to be anywhere else but here. In her small apartment, she and Hiei would be left alone, and she wasn't ready to confront him yet.
"Okay, see you there." Keiko hung up and Botan sighed as she walked over to the bathroom door.
"Hiei, we're going to Genkai's today. They're having something and well… I know you don't like gatherings but I'd appreciate it if-"
"-I'll go." He cut her off and Botan was surprised that she didn't even need to coax him or pull the Yukina Card.
"Great, well I'll just meet you there then!" She exclaimed.
Hiei wasn't really listening anymore at this point and continued to shower. When he didn't object she hopped on her oar and sped off, eager to avoid her embarrassing situation.
As she flew through the blue skies her mind was in torment. She berated herself for not realizing sooner that Hiei hadn't admitted he felt anything for her. It was horrible. She continually spilled her guts to him last night and he hadn't said a thing about his feelings.
What's worse is the fact that she slept with him. He was my first! And I don't even know if he feels the same as I do. Way to go girl, you really messed up this time!
By the time Hiei came out of the shower, he realized that Botan left. He too got dressed and sped off. It was odd of her to leave like that. He was curious as to what was running through her head.
When he reached he searched for her spirit energy only to find she hadn't arrived yet. He waited patiently by the doors and soon enough she arrived. As she landed she saw Hiei leaning against the door, with his arms crossed.
"Hiei! You got here fast!"
"Everyone knows of my speed. But the real question is why you were in such a rush to get here?"
"Well Keiko called and she needed help setting up so I figured I'd leave before you." Hiei still stared at her and she continued. "To help out, of course."
Bullshit. "I could've gotten you here in half the time it takes you to fly. What's the real reason?"
Botan smiled nervously putting her kitty face on. "There's no other reason Hiei. Don't be silly!" She slapped his arm half-heartedly and laughed.
"Onna-" Hiei was just about to answer but someone opened the door and since Hiei was leaning on it, he fell on his behind.
Botan took this as a sign from Enma and rushed inside to join up with the party.
"I knew I heard you two out here!" Yusuke bellowed. "Whoops, sorry, didn't see you there Hiei!" He attempted to help the grumbling demon up, but Hiei wouldn't accept his help.
"Hey where's the fire, Botan?" Yusuke called to her as he watched her retreating form. He turned to Hiei. "What's up with her, Hiei?"
The demon just growled and pushed passed him without a word leaving the Spirit Detective alone. Yusuke rolled his eyes and followed Hiei inside.
As they entered Hiei found that everyone was there, including Haru. Wait, Haru? Who the hell invited him?! He sighed hoping the demon wouldn't see him, but like always, Haru's eyes pinpointed Hiei like a hawk. "Hey, buddy!" He shouted jovially as he made his way over to Hiei.
"Isn't it great? Mukuro gave me the day off so I decided to spend it in the human world!" Haru's green eyes were as playful as ever.
"Good for you." Hiei walked away from Haru, but persistent as he was, he just couldn't get away. The boy followed Hiei like a puppy following its owner. "Is there something you want?"
"…No you just seem different today." He put his finger on his chin in thought. "I just can't figure it out, though. What is it…"
"It's nothing," Hiei retorted, finally giving up all efforts to shake Haru. He figured if he just ignored him, Haru would go away. He had other things occupying his mind and Haru was not on the list.
Ever since this morning Botan had been acting strange around him, it was almost like she was avoiding him. Was she not satisfied with his performance last night? No, that couldn't be it. Definitely not. Hiei was more than adequate and he was sure she was pleased last night. A smug smirk appeared on his face and all further doubts in his mind vanished.
"Hiei? Hiei! Are you even listening to me? Hello?!" Haru's commotion caused everyone else to take notice of his expression. He began to shake Hiei in attempt to knock him out of his daze and Hiei finally came to senses.
When he came to, he noticed all eyes were on him. He immediately regretted zoning out and glared at everyone. "Is something the matter?" He asked ominously, his dark tone giving everyone the chills.
They all immediately shook their heads and went on with their business, not wanting to anger the menacing fire-demon anymore than they already had.
"You're really creepy, you know that Hiei?" Haru mentioned as he walked off to a table filled with food. Hiei snorted, not giving a damn and went to his favorite corner.
At that moment he was sure Botan wasn't avoiding him, she just had other duties to take care of, but as the day wore on, he wasn't so sure anymore.
She only came to him to make sure he had eaten and was okay. She spent most of the day on the opposite side of the room as him. She hardly looked his way. Most of her time was taken up by others. It was unnerving and Haru's incessant chatting was not helping him in the least.
Lost in his own thoughts and the occasional ramblings of Haru, Hiei didn't even notice the others as they openly talked about his relationship with Botan and their secret meetings.
Yukina, Kuwabara, Yusuke, and Kurama were all seemingly having a nice chat of their own in one corner of the room, while Keiko, Shizuru, and Botan were preoccupied with their own ramblings in another corner. Botan had given Keiko and Shizuru a censored version of last night, only giving them the essential details. She confessed to Hiei, he tried to push her away, they slept together, and the next morning she realized he never told her about his feelings. The two brunettes were trying to comfort Botan and reassure her that Hiei's feelings were the same as her own, but Botan wasn't so sure anymore.
On the opposite corner three quarters of the Reikai Tantei and one ice maiden were discussing their own findings. "Something is obviously not right." Yusuke whispered.
"Yeah they're both acting different today. First Hiei with his freaky facial expressions and then there's Botan. She looks like she's totally avoiding Hiei." Kuwabara observed.
"Something is weighing heavily on her heart. I wonder what it is." Yukina questioned aloud, her innocent ruby eyes drifted towards to ferry-girl.
Throughout all their conversation, Kurama hadn't said a word. "Wait a minute. Youko got your tongue, Kurama?"
The redhead snapped out of his thoughts turning his attention to the detective.
"You've been awfully quiet throughout this whole get together. Not even a 'You should let them sort out their own affairs,' or a 'I don't think this is the right approach,' from you. You know something, don't you Kurama?"
All eyes turned to him, but Kurama kept his cool. "We should let them sort out their own affairs."
"Ah but that implies that something is going on. And that means you know something that we don't." Kurama was almost taken back by Kuwabara's sudden keenness. That is until the boy opened his mouth to speak again and began to whine. "C'mon you gotta tell us Kurama, it ain't fair!"
"No," Kurama answered simply. It wasn't his business to tell.
Yusuke smirked. So that's how he wants to play it, eh? "I thought we were all a team, Kurama. If you're keeping secrets from us how can we ever help those two clueless lovebirds?" Kurama hated when Yusuke's mouth twisted into an impish grin and his eyes glinted with mischief, much like they were now.
"Plus you wouldn't want our little ice-princess to feel like you don't trust us. Especially when she wants to help out the most…" Yusuke trailed off putting his hands on the smaller girl's shoulders and pushing her closer to Kurama.
Yukina looked up at him with her innocent child-like eyes. "If there is any information that could be helpful to us, please don't withhold it."
Kurama sighed. "Hiei might have mentioned something along the lines of them confessing their love to each other." Kurama decided to sugar-coat the details. He didn't want the whole world to know about what happened last night.
"That's great!" Yukina's eyes shone with happiness.
"…So why are they acting this way now?" Kuwabara asked, unable to figure out what was going on.
"I'm not sure. We'll have to let them work it out on their own," Kurama replied.
By the time their conversation had ended, Hiei had grown tired of it all. He decided he would figure out what in the hell was bothering her and sort it out. Hiei snapped out of his own thoughts only to find everyone segregated in their own little groups. He was beginning to grow tired of all this secrecy, but that was another problem for another day, right now he was determined to talk to the onna, alone.
Leaving Haru behind, Hiei marched up to the ferry girl. "We need to talk, now." He grabbed her wrist and led her to one of the rooms in Genkai's Temple. Naturally everyone else saw and curiosity got the better of them. They all followed and waited by the door, trying to catch a piece of the conversation.
"…Hiei that was very rude!" She scolded.
"I don't care."
"Well… what did you drag me in here for?"
"You know damn well. What's going on with you?"
"Nothing is wrong with me. I'm fine!"
"You say so, but you clearly aren't. You've been avoiding me the whole day. This isn't because of last night is it?"
Botan looked down, avoiding all eye contact. At her silence he continued.
"Is it?" He echoed louder, urging her to answer.
"…It is," She replied meekly.
Hiei looked utterly confused. "It can't be. You were more than satisfied last night, I'm sure of it."
Upon hearing Hiei's words, the few who didn't know about the events of last night tried to hold in their sounds of surprise.
Botan yelped and covered his mouth. "No, it's not that! I wasn't talking about that! That was… was…" She was at a loss for words and almost as red as Kurama's hair.
Hiei smirked. "I know Botan. You don't have to say it."
She rolled her eyes at his cockiness. "The real reason why I'm avoiding you is because I'm embarrassed, okay?"
"I told you how I feel about you. You already know that I love you… but you…" She looked him dead in the eye. "You never said anything about loving me back!" Tears sprung to her eyes but they didn't fall. She wouldn't let them. "I don't even know what I am to you… just a one night stand? Or… or…" She trailed off.
He sighed stepped closer to her. That's what this was about. He closed the distance between the two of them and hugged her. "I thought it was obvious how I felt."
"It wasn't all that obvious to me." She wrapped her arms around feeling comforted by his warm presence.
He quietly told her the words she was dying to hear, fully well knowing that the others were all outside eavesdropping. "I love you, Onna."
"Thank you Hiei," she breathed, feeling the weight lift off her chest. She was so relieved to know he actually cared for her. He hugged her for a moment longer before letting go and kicking the door down. "I thought you all would've learned by now not to meddle in the affairs of others."
They all ignored him as they rushed into the room. The girls all went to Botan hugging her as she laughed. "I told you he loved you back!" Keiko exclaimed.
"Yeah there was nothing to worry about!" Shizuru patted her on the back.
"I'm so happy for you, Botan.," Yukina said wholeheartedly.
"Thanks guys. You were right." She beamed.
Yusuke and Kuwabara exchanged high-fived and congratulated each other. "We did it, partner." Yusuke smirked as Kuwabara nodded.
"You two do realize you had nothing to do with this right?" Kurama asked.
"…Let's let them live in the dream world for a little while longer," Haru replied.
Hiei stood there shocked, although he didn't let it show. "You all… knew about this." It was more of a statement than a question.
Slowly the others shook their heads afraid of Hiei's wrath. "I guess we all kinda figured that you guys liked each other." Yusuke started.
"We just gave you guys a good push in the right direction!" Kuwabara finished.
"But I am surprised. I mean who would've thought Hiei would get lucky before me!" Yusuke just didn't know when to quit.
"Er… guys…" Botan called but they continued to chat, ignoring Hiei's clenched fists.
"Who would've thought the short could get lucky in general!" Kuwabara sniggered.
"…Please calm down, Hiei!" Botan pleaded.
"Yeah and with Botan of all people!" Yusuke began to laugh. "Never in a million years! She's all flowers and rainbows and ponies and butterflies and glitter and…"
Botan stopped trying to calm the fire-demon down and glared at the tactless duo. "They're all yours Hiei."
And with that, Hiei sped off, chasing the two detectives while they yelled and begged for their lives. The others looked on and laughed at Yusuke and Kuwabara's misfortune. Botan smiled as she watched the half-koorime, no her half-koorime chase after the spirit detectives. She never would've thought in a million years that Hiei would return her affections, but he did, and the loneliness that had been eating away at her day by day was gone.
She knew they were completely different in every way; everything the other was not, but they completed each other and that was all that mattered.
Oh man it's finally over. I just woke up this morning and felt like finishing something before summer vacation ended. It's been fun. I really love this story and I hope you all are pleased with how it ended. Please review and let me know how it turned out. I hope it met your expectations. Thank you so much for keeping up with this story despite all the long waits. You guys are the best reviewers ever. Love ya! Thanks again.