Nobody understood. Truly, they didn't. His job was a lot more difficult than it appeared. Oh, sure, just stand around acting like a stick-in-the-mud! Yes...that was why he had a SWORD, and wore ARMOR. No one seemed to understand that he was more than just some bored hermaphrodite's conscious. True, he did spend a good amount of time trying to get her to stop watching the red head during his sex-capades. But it wasn't HIS JOB! His job was to protect her from danger. Little had he understood at the time that the danger was often brought upon by herself.

He remembered a time when he was famous, one of the best swordsmen heaven had ever seen. His services had been called for far and wide. None had stood before him! And was taken away from him. Okay, so it really wasn't TAKEN. He had a little...accident. Everyone has one now and then. His just happened to be when all the heavens were watching. And the Jade Emperor had bet heavily on him. He sighed, fingers caressing the grip of his sword. To lose a battle...all because a butterfly got caught in the eye guard of his helmet and he fell over screaming like a girl because it had scared him! Nothing was more embarassing. Or detrimental to his career. The Jade Emperor had been so furious over his massive monetary loss the Jiroshen had been demoted and sent be the "body guard." for the Merciful Goddess. Boy, was THAT false advertising! She was about as merciful as poison ivy on your...well..."naughty bits" for lack of a more correct way of saying it.

And now here he was, baby sitting a comatose child and a gender confused goddess! No, it was not an easy time. Granted, coma-boy wasn't going anywhere. He didn't even wake up to use the restroom. Guess who got to clean that up? But her...If he weren't there to watch her back or keep her in place, she'd be doing any number of crazy things! Why, just the other night he'd had to drag her back inside by the ponytail for passing out in the field outside Heaven's Gate. Naked, no less! And sporting a new tattoo that said "Take Your Pick" right above her...ah...extra gear. Or what about the other day when she decided to go to Earth and try to "score some grade-A shit"? The LAST time she'd done that, she'd smoked it all right before the Jade Emperor's birthday banquet and ended up instigating a food fight.

Okay, technically, she didn't start it. But she definately didn't need to encourage Kireru, the Sun Goddess' five year old son. A contest to see who could insult the other better? The boy had been so upset, he'd chucked his piece of cake at her...and missed by a mile. The person hit was less than happy and fired back. In the end, when you looked at it, it was all because she had the maturity of a kid with a water balloon, ice water and topless sunbathers below. It was awfully sad that for a person who has been alive for thousands of years and is considered "enlightened". Maybe that was why she'd picked those four idiots and not sent someone a little more competent...and less likely to get side-tracked. Why, if it weren't for him going down and clearing out the heavy-duty youkai from their path, they would have died a week into their journey!

What of those four, anyway? A monk (and he used the title loosely) with very obvious anger-management problems. A constantly smiling mass murderer. A sex-crazed gambler. And a stomach with a body. Oh, and let's not forget the mini-dragon that conveniently turned into a Jeep. Honestly, her sense of humor was just sick at times! He kept hoping that maybe they would all kill each other. He could see the scenario, too. The womanizer switches for dark meat and tries to screw the head-case, who then shoots him. Mr. Smiley (the pervert's boyfriend, he strongly suspected) gets upset and decides one more murder isn't going to make much difference. And the little one, upset that the person buying him food his dead, gets hungry and eats the murderer. Oh, and then he would starve to death himself! A little snort of laughter escaped before he could stop himself. Luckily, no one was there to witness it. No one who could talk anyway.

He sighed, looking at his boots. Yes, no one understood how incredibly challenging his job really was. Taking orders from someone who clearly were just screwing things up to see what would happen. Having to sit back and watch four incompetant lunatics go on a journey to save the world. The only one who didn't tax his nerves was the one in the coma. Now, THERE was an idea! If they were all in comas they wouldn't be such a nuisance. He shook his head. No, too much trouble. Knowing his luck he'd be the one stuck caring for all of them. Wiping the drool and bottom of one vegetable was enough for him! Six of them and he'd be finding a way to join them. All he wanted was for everyone to understand that he didn't ask for this babysitting job. It was never his goal in life to be here, playing the unwilling voyeurist on the world below. He was supposed to be the greatest champion in the heavens. He could have had it all! He could have made something of himself.

And it was all lost because of some damned butterfly!