IF IT WERE ONLY THIS EASY
When daily life consists of routine--such as driving along a never-ending path that will undoubtedly lead to some form of opposition before the day is done--anything falling outside that routine can often come as a very real shock. Stumbling across someone who does not end up threatening your life by the end of the encounter is often shock enough, but stumbling across opposition that cannot be fought or even properly faced…now that can be devastating.
Especially if the opposition comes in the form of a dream that is far more desirable than reality.
"Ano…Sanzo…I'm not entirely sure how to address this matter, but…"
"What is it, Hakkai?"
"…well…it would seem we are in a bit of trouble at the moment."
Sanzo lazily opens his eyes, moving them slowly to the side to focus on the man seated next to him. "Meaning…?"
Emerald eyes trained very firmly on the distant horizon, Hakkai does not have to reply; his increasingly bewildered expression tells Sanzo where his attention should be turned.
As the mildly annoyed monk lifts his head to stare out at the scenery in front of them, he wonders for maybe a moment only what it might be like to swallow sand.
Ahead of them is what a novice would assume must be a coming sandstorm, but having been on the road for near a year now, Sanzo and his fellows know better. That is no sandstorm; that is a whirlwind. A tornado of sand caused by something that could not possibly be natural.
"An attack, do you suppose?" Hakkai asks, bringing the jeep to a slow halt.
Sanzo takes a moment to survey their surroundings. Nothing. No trees or outpost from which any villain could be sending such an attack from. "I don't see how."
"But…this is no force of nature I have ever seen. The sun is shining, there is no wind."
"I think we better wake up the idiots in the back."
A few moments later and Goku and Gojyo, who had been dozing rather pleasantly for the last few hours, have been pulled none to gently from rest and are now staring out at the sight ahead.
Whatever the whirlwind is, it appears to be moving towards them.
"Shit…that don't look good."
"Hey, Hakkai, can't we go around it?"
"I don't think that would work, Goku. This…phenomenon…seems to be rather enamored with us."
Gojyo lets out a low laugh. "That's smart-talk for…don't piss in your drawers, monkey-boy, but it's coming right for us."
In an act of routine, Goku has no choice but to stick his tongue out in contempt at the comment and pet-name given, but considering the coming storm--indeed, heading right for them--any lingering resentment falls by the wayside.
Hakkai shifts Hakuryuu into reverse, bringing them a few yards back. This, to the crew's complete lack of humor in the situation, proves only to increase the whirlwind's speed in heading towards them. Hakkai tries again, a little faster and a little father than before, but the result is the same. Like it or not, it does not seem as if they can outrun this.
"Turn the jeep around."
"If it wants a chase, we'll give it one."
Hakkai spins the wheel, turning the jeep roundabout to begin heading east. Sanzo maintains an apathetic face, languidly smoking a cigarette as he stares forward. Goku and Gojyo continue to look out the back, watching with growing trepidation the cyclone of sand following them now at an impossible speed.
"Yo, you shitty monk, pay attention!"
"Sanzo, it's gonna catch us!"
A flicker of red passes by Goku and Gojyo as Sanzo's cigarette is pulled into the whirlwind. "Che." the monk growls, clenching his now empty fingers into a fist. "Someone's going to pay for that…"
By the time the four young men are coming to, their surroundings have significantly changed.
Each takes stock of the state of the others first, seeing that yes, Sanzo, Goku, Gojyo, and Hakkai are all okay as they are now picking themselves up from the ground and taking in their surroundings. They are in what appears to be a very normal bedroom, which is very abnormal considering the last thing any of them remember was being in the jeep, in the middle of the desert, with a cyclone on their tail.
Sanzo is the first to speak. "Fuck." he curses, looking right pissy at being unable to locate his cigarettes, his lighter, his fan…or his gun. He is comforted only by the safety of the sutra still resting on his shoulders. "Where the hell are we?"
"Damn." comes a curse from Gojyo, who suddenly thought to look for his own smokes and lighter, ending in much the same failure. "Wherever we are it sure ain't heaven. You think this is some kinda joke?"
Hakkai, who had been scrutinizing their surrounding with the most critical care, looks fairly stumped. "I don't like that Hakuryuu is not here. We all seem to be missing things. Including memory--lost time. I can't see how we have come to be here. Wherever here is…" The monocled man turns a kind eye on Goku, who seems to be preoccupied with the bed near the center of the room. "Goku…are you all right?"
The earth-child does not respond, too immersed in whatever it is he is staring so intently at.
"It…it can't be…"
Hakkai's look turns quizzical. Sanzo and Gojyo have also turned their attention on the young heretic. "Goku…what…?" But Hakkai never quite finishes his question, for he too sees what is so fascinating about the occupant in the bed--an occupant they had failed to notice until now.
Gold eyes turn back to the others, their owner's expression wild and uncertain. "Sanzo…guys…it really is, right? I'm not going crazy or somethin'…right?" He turns back to the bed, half reaching out is if to touch the sleeping parody. "It's…me."
True enough, asleep on the bed, with the covers pulled up tight around him to only reveal a very familiar face, brown hair, and the glinting gold of a coronet…is Goku.
"It's me. It's really me. But…I look kinda…older or something', huh? Sanzo…?"
The monk approaches cautiously, looking past the Goku speaking to him to stare at the Goku in the bed. The sleeping monkey does appear a few years older than the monkey he knows. But if that is true…then…have they been brought to some near future?
Sanzo does not want to think about it.
"Wherever we are…let's find the quickest way out." the blonde says with clear disdain for this place, though the others can't quite understand what he has to dislike about a future with Goku still alive and well in it. "Hakkai?"
The brunette nearly jumps at being addressed so suddenly, and as three sets of eyes pin him with their weight, he feels for the first time that he wants to hide from their collective stare. "Look to me as long as you want, but I know no more than the rest of you. My chi abilities have a certain advantage in detecting an evil presence or a spell, but…as far as my senses are able…they see this place as merely the bedroom it appears to be."
Sanzo nearly sneers, and would have taken his frustrations out on…anyone…if only he had his fan to lash out with. Whatever is going on, someone is going to die for daring to take his things.
All four men start at the sudden shrill sound of a very unpleasant ringing. Their eyes dart to one another, and then about the room, searching for the source. It is Goku who finally realizes where the sound is coming from as he points to the dresser just off the bed where an alarm clock is busily sounding its good morning. Sanzo moves as if to grab the clock and silence it, but Hakkai moves forward to block his path, shaking his head in dissent.
"Sanzo, we cannot interfere with this place until we know where we are and what purpose we have for being here. We should see how things play out."
Violet eyes narrow dangerously, but before Sanzo can protest Hakkai's demands, a few strange moans begin to emanate from the bed. And they do not sound at all like they are coming from Goku. The still sleeping Goku has not even twitched, in fact, and as the four men standing in front of the bed look on, they come to realize how foolish they had been for not noticing the second lump beneath the covers.
"I knew putting the alarm clock on your side of the bed was a mistake."
SLAM. A pale hand has risen up out of the covers, reached over Goku, and slammed down on the clock to turn it off. As the figure lifts himself up slightly to stare down at the yes, still sleeping Goku, the covers fall from his white shoulders, and his blonde hair is revealed to be slightly longer than they would normally expect from--
"Sanzo! No fucking way!"
Gojyo's more vocal approach to this discovery is indeed very much like the internal reactions going on in his companions. Hakkai's mouth is unseemly hung open, Goku's eyes are wide and frozen, and Sanzo has started to shake--shake from unbridled anger at the violation in the grotesque display being set before them.
At least, that is what the scene is as far as Sanzo is concerned. The others are too busy watching to think much more on the absurdity of the show.
"Goku, wake up." the bed-laid blonde speaks to the sleeping brunette beside him. Besides the man's appearance being slightly different--his hair just a bit longer as it brushes his shoulders, the absence of the chakra on his forehead--it is the neutrality of his tone that catches the attention of the onlookers. He sounds almost…nice. "Goku." he says again, a small smile playing at his lips as he gently shakes his companion's shoulders. "You're not fooling anyone, you know. Goku. Come on, babe, get up."
Gojyo nearly chokes. "Babe…?"
Hakkai is awestruck.
Goku has gone pale.
Sanzo…is still shaking.
"Goku…I mean it." the blonde in the bed says more sternly. Receiving no response, not even a twitch of a muscle in reply, a strange little smirk forms on the man's lips as he leans down close to Goku's peaceful face and whispers, "Goku…if you don't wake up right now…" he pauses, his smirk turning rather wicked. "…no sex for a week."
Hakkai, Gojyo, and Goku's hearts all skip a very large beat.
Sanzo has stopped breathing.
The Goku in the bed at last shows signs of life as a single, golden eye peaks open. He stares at the blonde hovering so close to him. "You wouldn't."
The blonde laughs--genuinely laughs. "Works every time."
Goku pulls an arm from out of the covers and swings it towards his partner's head. "Jerk."
The blonde catches it with ease, since the blow had no real intention of causing harm. "Ah, ah, ah. Good monkeys play nice."
Freeing his arm with far too much ease, and looking as if he has moved his legs beneath the covers to coil around the legs beside his own, Goku smiles in triumph. "Who says I'm a good monkey." the boy teases, and as the other four men in the room continue to look on in varied degrees of surprise and horror--none having really taken note of how the pair in the bed seems to have no knowledge of their presence--the very content and happy couple proceeds to struggle and wrestle on the bed until they suddenly become a mass of tangled sheets that has landed on the floor.
Goku, the only one close enough to have need to move back, jumps away as the pair lands nearly on his feet. The laughter echoing from both of them as they try to untangle themselves…has Goku's blood running cold. The boys knows better than to look to Sanzo. He knows that whatever expression Sanzo is wearing, it can only be one that would cause his heart to ache.
Still silenced as they stare, the four men watch as the other Goku comes out triumphant after all, coming up straddling the blonde's waist as his hands hold the other man down by his wrists being pinned above that beautiful, golden head. "Now, this is more like it. And much more familiar." Goku beams, shifting his hips a little beneath the barely-enough-to-cover-him-now sheet around his waist. However the pair's bodies are touching beneath the covers, the group is certain they do not want to know.
The blonde on the floor is still smiling, the expression so strange and foreign for the face it rests on, that every once in a while the onlookers wonder if it is really Sanzo at all. "Maybe." the blonde says. "But that's only true…because I like you in this position." A quick lunge up connects the man's lips with Goku's and they kiss slow and sensually, smiles playing on both their faces as their lips and tongues dance in a very common good morning.
Sanzo's nails are digging so deeply into his palms as his fists remain clenched, that if one looked close enough they would be able to see the small bit of blood pooling around the broken skin. "What…is this…?" he growls, his voice sounding more menacing than any of the others ever remember hearing it.
Hakkai's mouth has finally closed out of decency, and he turns to look at Sanzo with a furrowed brow. He has no answer.
Gojyo, face filled half with amusement and half with horror, remains trained on the strange--alien, impossible, disgusting, oddly…erotic--image of Goku and a certain blonde bombshell kissing passionately on the floor of what can only be…THEIR bedroom.
Goku…does not look up from the image either, but only because he cannot bear to see the look surely present in Sanzo's eyes.
When the blonde on the floor and the Goku with him pull apart, they are still smiling, seeming as if they could not be more comfortable…with everything. "Morning." Goku says.
"Morning." the blonde replies.
"Love you too."
Whatever semblances of sound or movement that may have been present in the room stop very reverently dead. Not even Gojyo would dare comment on that.
There is a moment of stifling silence as the four men stare, and the pair stares at each other, until the Goku on the floor suddenly pulls himself up with a shout of, "I call first shower!", before sprinting--quite naked--out of the bedroom and towards what they assume must be the bathroom.
No one knows how to respond to all this. What had been a possibly lewd, and very near sweet display, now seems suddenly dangerous.
Sanzo stares with unrestrained hatred at his own likeness on the floor. How dare the man smile that way, and look so…happy. How dare the man act as if life is all daisies and good times with a natural liking of life and what is granted him. He has no right…
"How…dare you…" he speaks, his voice too low at first to hear properly. "Who do you think you are…to show us this…filth. Tell me. Who are you? Who are you!" The others are not prepared for it when Sanzo suddenly lunges for the figure on the floor, and they are certainly not prepared for how Sanzo falls right through the man, is if he--or Sanzo--is nothing but a ghost.
Realizing he is somewhat half-inside his other self, Sanzo recoils, pushing back until he falls into a clumsy sitting position on the floor with the other blonde just in front of him. He breathes heavily, watching with hatred and now a little fear as the other him finally gets up from the ground, the sheet falling away to reveal that he too is very much naked.
Sanzo's breath hitches in his panic and his fury. He gets to his feet quickly, his eyes never once leaving the form of his own naked self walking across the room to the closet where he pulls out a robe to slip over that pale skin. Sanzo is silently thankful for the cover--his body is not for others' eyes--but he cannot keep himself from hating this figure as the man heads out of the bedroom.
"Hn…Sanzo doesn't look any older."
Darting his attention immediately to whomever is bold enough to speak, Sanzo glares at Gojyo with no more purpose than that he hates how the others have witnessed this with him.
Gojyo shrugs off Sanzo's stern look, catching a quick acknowledgement from Hakkai and Goku before continuing. "I'm just saying. Yeah, Goku looks a few years older, right? But Sanzo doesn't. He looks the same. Well…not the same, but…ya know. So…this can't really be the future, I don't think."
"Of course this isn't the future, you fucking kappa!" Sanzo seethes. "This would never, had never, will never happen! This is some…twisted, sick illusion by one of those damn assassins, and I will not stand for it. Let us out of here now, you fucking bastard!" Sanzo screams at the ceiling suddenly, his distress unnerving to all of them, who have never quite seen the monk so incensed.
"Sanzo…" Hakkai begins slowly, treading this territory as carefully as he can. "I do not believe this is as simple as an attack. The whirlwind…whatever it was…could not have been an attack, as you yourself said. It brought us here, and I do no know how or why, but whatever this…reality is--"
"There is nothing of reality about this!" Sanzo counters, the blood from his palms finally showing around the sides of his fists.
"Whatever this is," Hakkai continues without reservations, "Our only hope for understanding it will be by continuing to watch." Hakkai quickly speaks on to stop Sanzo from having another outburst. "No matter how difficult it may be for us, this…place has a story, and someone wants for us to see it. We have no other choice."
There are a number of tense moments that pass with Sanzo looking near the breaking point the entire time, but when he finally comes to a decision, he has no choice but to agree with Hakkai. He nods shortly, releasing his fists just long enough for the others to see how deeply he has been enraged since his palms are cut and bleeding, and then his eyes are narrowing again. "The second we have a way out of here, we're taking it." he says, and is storming his way out the door and after his other self before any of the others can comment again.
Gojyo and Hakkai know all too well that they must handle this next part with extreme care.
"Hey…that was pretty freaky, huh, saru?"
"A rather…interesting display, to be sure."
Goku says nothing. His eyes are cast to the ground, his own fists clenched tightly as he tries without much success to keep his eyes from teary up.
Hakkai's forced smile falters. "Goku…you know…Sanzo doesn't mean to be--"
"Sanzo means to be himself, Hakkai." breaks in Goku's too somber and mature-sounding voice. He looks up slowly, his ageless eyes betraying his sorrow all too easily. "He always means to be how he is. And…he's really mad…having to see that. It was…pretty weird. Sanzo and me…kissing. That's…weird."
Gojyo almost flinches; he doesn't know how to deal with Goku when the boy is like this. And the monkey has never been quite like this--not to this extent--in all the years he has known him. "Someone must have some warped sense of humor." Gojyo tries, hoping that somehow making a joke of the whole thing might help Goku get through this. "I know the monk's not into woman, but he is way more asexual than anything. He probably doesn't even know what sex is, let alone who or what he'd want to have it with. He's just freaked at thinking of himself all naked and sweaty with--"
"Me." Goku finishes, a finality clear in his tone.
Gojyo doesn't know what to say. He looks to Hakkai, but the green-eyed youkai is just as much at a loss as he is. They stare on rather helplessly as Goku makes his way across the room to follow after Sanzo. No words pass between them when they finally decide to follow also, but in their minds both are close to screaming.
A/N: I have been playing with this idea in my head for quite some time now, and I figured since my Weiss fic is finally finished (yay) now would be a good time to turn back to Saiyuki. I do not know how long this will be, but the boys are going to be watching a very interesting show to be sure. If you want to see where this goes, or what is happening, you will have to read on. Reviews are much appreciated. No, this is not the future, though Goku is older. As for the rest...til next time.