Alright, there's a first time for everything, and this is mine for writing a fanfic.
It's anime based, since I haven't read the manga (I know, I'm a heretic - I did become converted later though), and the title basically tells what the fic's about. It's primarily inspired by the idea that CxR are already a couple (and, as seen in other fanfics, they've already been going at it between the sheets). This would completely undermine the entire significance of the disease curing kiss, and the fact that Rosette becomes practically terrified about having to give it to him, makes no sense since they've pretty much been through all the basics of bedroom gymnastics, and a kiss... well you get the picture. I've tried to keep it in an 'I'm writing what wasn't shown in the anime' way, which means that I'm partly incorporating and elaborating a bit on scenes from the episode, but mainly I'm writing scenes, which believably (I hope) could have taken place in between without disturbing the chronology of the episode. Furthermore I have no idea, how the gypsy speaks in the english dubbed anime, but I'm a fan of a few clichés and one of them is the stereotypical german 'crook english' accent (and zis eez how vee say goodbye in Germany... doktor Jones), so that's the way she talks here.
Anyway... enough about writing motivations etc. and on to the writing itself.
Thoughts (Sometimes used to denote emphasis on spoken words)
Transcendental voice (For lack of a better word. Simply used to convey wordings from beings not of a physical world)
Of course these can all be combined in various ways like:
"YELL!" (Bet no one thought of that)
Disclaimer: I don't own anything Chrno Crusade related, so I'll need to make money some other way.
This is a slightly revised chapter 1, but nothing major has changed. I merely stumbled upon a few misspelled words that my spellchecker for some reason didn't feel like correcting, so I read through it again and made a few adjustments along the way.
The Curing Kiss
Chapter 1 – Symptoms
He was sick...
He had never been sick before, in fact he had never even heard of a demon ever getting sick. Guess it's just my luck.
His whole body was weak, his mind was hazy, he felt sore for no reason, and he was hot, cold, sweating and shivering at the same time. He felt completely useless and pathetic, being able to do nothing but stare around in the room, which had been made available to him. It was much bigger than the one in the convent, with numerous paintings, depicting everything from portraits to landscapes, adorning the walls. Hell... even the walls themselves were a work of art with all the intricate carvings decorating the heavy wooden panels they were composed of. But apart from the bed, the nightstand and the single floor lamp in the corner, the room was unfurnished. It was definitely a few social classes higher, than what he was accustomed to, and apparently the rich could afford to waste space. He could see the afternoon sun through the large glass door leading to the balcony. Warm rays of light forced their way through the transparent barrier illuminating the room with a yellowish tint.
Lying in what was probably the most luxurious bed he'd ever found himself in did very little to make him feel comfortable. He was weak, and he hated it. Every ounce of strength had been drained from him, and he was exhausted almost to the point of passing out. He didn't dare go to sleep though.
No. Don't think about it. As long as I'm awake, it's jake. He wasn't even aware of how stupid the rhyme sounded, until he'd actually finished the sentence in his head. A regular demon poet, yeah that's me, he thought sarcastically. He made an effort to continue his mental ranting, hoping that it would keep the sleep at bay.
Damn! Humans get sick all the time, how the hell do they deal with this? It's amazing, really - they risk this condition so many times during their lives, yet they still go about their business. Having a fever is just an ordinary obstacle to them. It must take an enormous amount of strength, to brush it aside like that. Aren't they scared at all? The human body is so frail and yet when it comes to something like...
His body began to shake slightly, as the fever climbed. His vision began to blur somewhat, and he became drowsy. No I'm NOT gonna do that, must stay awake, remain conscious. His trembling was not caused solely by the fever. He was afraid. His mind was desperately searching for anything to occupy him.
Squeak... Squeak... Squeak...
Creaking Floorboards? Footsteps!
It was a feeble attempt to yell, his voice was just too weak. No, it wasn't loud enough, she probably didn't even hear me.
The door opened. "Hi Chrno," Azmaria said cheerily.
"I heard you calling." She approached him. "So how are you feeling?" Putting her hand on his forehead, the girl kneeled beside the bed.
"Don't really know Azmaria, I feel... kinda weak." He was happy that she had come though. He didn't like being alone, it was nice to have someone to talk to.
"Hmm your fever is still high. But don't worry. Rosette and Satella are out buying some cold medicine so you can get better." She smiled. "In the meantime you should get some sleep, resting is important when you are recovering."
The knot in his stomach instantly tightened again, and the feeling of intestines about to be crushed didn't exactly ease his discomfort. How can she say it so casually. Hell no! I'm gonna stay awake until Rosette and Satella comes back with the medicine, it will cure me of this fever, and all of this will be over. Somehow convincing himself of his own voiced thoughts seemed to require too much effort, as if he was unable to muster the hope. He struggled to regain control over his feelings, trying to calm himself. He wasn't doing a very good job at hiding his emotions.
"What's wrong Chrno? Are you Ok? Is there something you need?" Deep concern was written all over the girl's face, she held his left hand in both of hers, looking at him with large eyes.
The simple fact that she was so concerned, comforted the demon, and he smiled wearily at the apostle kneeling next to him. Not wanting to worry her, he pushed the fear aside and tried to keep his voice from quavering. "Azmaria, is it really necessary to sleep in order to recover?"
Slightly puzzled at this question, Azmaria put on a curious face. "Well, I guess not. But you're not thinking of getting up to go search for Joshua now, are you? The way you are now you can't even walk on your own, and you might get hurt, if you tried to go out and look for him. I mean, what if some evil demon found you, and took advantage of you being sick and all." She gripped his hand tighter, scared by the prospect of her own words.
"No, that's not what I meant, it's just..." Dammit how do you explain something like this. He felt as if he was acting like a big baby. "Nevermind, it's nothing," he said giving her hand a reassuring squeeze. "And don't worry. I don't plan on going anywhere."
She relaxed, and returned to her former self. "Well anyway, your body will recover much faster, if you get some rest. But I can go make you some tea if you like." Her expression was asking, if there was anything at all, she could do for him.
"Nah. Don't Bother. It's Jake." Taking a deep breath, the demon decided to follow the girl's suggestion. Azmaria probably knows what she's talking about anyway, she's been sick numerous times before - all humans have. Guess I'm no expert on this subject, if resting truly is an important part of recovery, then I will rest. The dread of being left alone reemerged. He brushed it aside. I'll just have to endure.
"I'll try to get some sleep instead, see if I can kick this thing"
Azmaria hadn't noticed the brief flicker of panic in Chrno's face and replied cheerfully. "OK. I'll go help Steiner with the chores around the mansion. There are so many and he's such an old man. He shouldn't be doing them all by himself."
She really is a sweet girl. The thought made him smile slightly.
The girl turned to leave. "Don't worry Chrno. You'll get better in no time," she said on her way out. "Do you want me to leave the door open?"
"Nah, just close it."
She shut the door behind her, leaving the sinner alone again.
"I truly hope that you're right about this Azmaria." The words rang hollow and meaningless in his mind.
Shit. Pull yourself together. You were alone for over fifty years in a godforsaken tomb and now you're afraid of being alone for a single afternoon lying in a comfortable bed. Besides Rosette and Satella are probably already on their way with the medicine, so you have nothing to worry about. His pep talk didn't really do much to ease his nerves, after all it wasn't being left alone in the bed which frightened him.
It was the dream.
How the hell do I manage to stay so sane, when I'm awake? It makes absolutely no sense. He stared into the ceiling trying to clear his thoughts, bracing himself for what was to come. A few minutes passed, and the drowsiness began to return, he yawned as he closed his eyes. He probably couldn't stay awake much longer, even if he tried.
Alright, I'm ready.
Slowly the darkness washed over him as the exhausted demon gave in to his weariness. He appeared to sleep peacefully.
X X X X X X X X X X X X
X X X X X X X X X X X X
"Hey! Rosette! Wait up!"
The golden haired girl had stormed out of the fortune teller's tent, and it was virtually impossible to keep up with her. How can she run so fast in that outfit. She looks like a bum too, geez people must be thinking that she's stolen my purse the way I'm chasing her. It wasn't until Rosette stopped, that Satella finally caught up with her.
"What the... hell are you... doing? You rushed out of that tent like you'd seen a ghost!"
"Huh, me... oh. Well, you know. That old woman was really creeping me out, and the tent smelled really really bad, so I had to get some fresh air, and I thought that we didn't need any more from her, and besides she was probably just a fake who was after our money, and if we stayed there we'd probably get mugged, and I don't have my guns, so I figured..."
"SHUT UP!" This was becoming entirely too much for Satella.
"So you really got what you came for?" The german woman asked inquisitively.
"Well, since she was a fake I don't really believe her. We should just get some ordinary cold medicine and go back."
"WHAT? After all this running around, you just wanna get regular cold medicine? We could have done that to begin with!" Satella's frustrations, from walking and driving back and forth all day, only increased when Rosette implied, that it had all been for nothing.
"Yeah, I know. But we didn't alright! Besides we've spent way too much time with this already."
"Well, that's most definitely not my fault. In fact, I told you to give it up a long time ago. But you just had to check every pharmacy, herbalist, and quack in all of San Francisco."
"Yeah yeah." Rosette couldn't really care less, she hadn't asked the Princess of Bickering to come along anyway.
Calling upon her last ounce of patience the jewel witch sighed. "Alright. Let's just find a pharmacy and be done with this." She began to walk. "You coming?"
"Well... I just remembered something that I need to do. You just go ahead and get the medicine. I'll meet you at the car." Without further explanation Rosette spun around and ran back the way they came from.
"Wait! Where're you..." Too late. What on earth has gotten into that girl? Well I'm not chasing after her again that's for sure. She began walking to the pharmacy. Is she going back to the fortune teller?
X X X X X X X X X X X X
X X X X X X X X X X X X
Two entities could be seen in the darkness. Without any particular shape or form they just appeared as two luminous existences. They were of different sizes.
The larger appeared powerful and somehow determined. It was blazing a brilliant blue color. The light was radiating outwards with tremendous force.
The smaller didn't appear quite as strong, it was however shining with a zealous intensity. The color wasn't really distinguishable, at certain times it could resemble the blue color of the larger, but it would quickly be replaced by another color resembling peach. The two colors seemed to swirl around erratically making the entity apear to be in a state of chromatic indecision.
The larger being was engulfing the smaller one. It would seem, that it was either forcefully overwhelming it, or perhaps protecting it from something.
It wasn't a voice, but if it had been, it would have been terrifying. It seemed to come from everywhere and nowhere, and it shook the emptiness with an unimaginable might. The beings showed no signs of being affected by it. Then it blasted forth again, like a gigantic growl with all the rage of an unstoppable beast.
YIELD - OR DIE
If it was even remotely possible, the emptiness would have been shattered by the sheer power and fury of this second command. The entities still didn't waver. Both were burning as brightly as they had been until now. It was almost as if they had increased their luminance defiantly, but whether they did so in response to this 'voice' was impossible to tell. The source of these inaudible wordings remained undisclosed as well. Perhaps they were created by the entities themselves. Perhaps they came from something else...
The third is soon done
Then there will only be one left
X X X X X X X X X X X X
X X X X X X X X X X X X
The smell of incense hang thick in the air.
The crackling and snapping sounds of slowly burning wood could be heard.
The furnishing inside was spartan consisting of a simple table accompanied by two chairs and, standing next to the small fire, a crude shelving unit, which buckled slightly under the weight of all the items filling it. There were some mundane objects on it, but mainly occult talismans and artifacts littered the makeshift piece of storage furniture. Indeed, this was not the belongings of just any regular person. The light from the flames caused shadows to dance on the inner walls of the tent, though not in an ominous way. It resembled the coziness of a wayside inn if anything.
"Ahhhh. Eet eez you again childe." The fortune teller sat behind her bowl of liquid. "Come in. Vee did not finish our talk from before."
Rosette entered hesitantly, still slightly unnerved. There was something about this old lady that didn't quite meet the eye. "Well, I just came back to hear more about the spell. I didn't really understand what you said, about him having to surrender his heart and soul and all that. I thought you were gonna cast some kind of spell, and I panicked. I thought that you could reach him through me, and I ran out believing you wouldn't be able to if I got away." That explanation was just about the dumbest she had even heard herself, and the fact that it was the truth didn't make it any better. "I'm sorry."
The old woman looked at the teen with an indulgent expression. "I knew, you vould not understand. Just az I knew you vould run avay and come back alone. Vell, in fact I simply said vhat you needed to hear, in order to run avay, and come back vizout ze ozer voman. Eet eez because vhat I have to say, eez for you alone, and I did not vant to be rude and ask ze ozer von to get out."
"WHAT? How? Why?" Rosette exclaimed wide-eyed.
"Now, now, do not be angry young childe." The gypsy was speaking ever so slowly and calming. "I merely foresaw zat if I had told ze ozer voman to leave, you vould have asked me vhy she could not stay. Since zere really vas no answer I could give, vhich vould satisfy you, you vould get mad at me, and zen you vould become suspicious of me. You vould have left vit her, because you vould feel, zat you could not trust me. You vould not have returned, and you vould not hear, vhat I have to say to you."
The young nun gaped in astonishment. She's right... At least... I think she's right. "But how did you know all of this?"
"Vell, do you not believe zat I can perceive ze future?" The old woman sounded almost hurt. "I am a fortune teller, young childe. Zat eez vhy you came in ze first place, eez eet not?"
Rosette shook her head in utter bewilderment. She honestly didn't know how to react, but she still felt she needed to hear what the old woman had to say. "Yeah, I'm sorry. I do believe that." I certainly do now. She approached the table, and sat down on the chair.
"First to get rid of zis. Eet veel be of no use to uz." She picked up her scrying bowl and placed it on one of the shelves. "Do you vant somezing to drink? I have hot vater on ze kettle. I can make you a cup of tea."
"No thanks, I'm fine."
The gypsy eyed her shortly. "I veel make you von anyvay. Zere are many zings for you to understand, and eet veel take a little vhile." She went and picked up the kettle from the small fire along with a jar standing next to it. "Besides." Her words had a matter-of-factly ring to them. "Eet eez a very good tea. You veel like eet." She grabbed a large handleless cup from the top shelf, opened the jar and pulled out three small cloth sacks from it. "Tell me. Zis demon. Eez he a good friend of yours?"
Rosette smiled and nodded even though the woman wasn't looking. "Yes. Yes, he is."
"Zat eez very rare." She had opened the three sacks taking a select amount of herbs from each sack and putting it into the cup. "Demons do not usually make friends, you know."
Rosette studied the brewing, not really knowing why she had become so patient, when she was in such a hurry before. One sack held small twigs about an inch long with green sprouts on. The second had jagged leaves in it, and the third held petals from some kind of flower. They look like rose petals, except they're blue.
The old woman turned her head and gave Rosette a warm smile. "He must be very special."
The teen blushed slightly. "Yes, that too."
The gypsy started to pour the water into the cup. "I vould like to know childe. Zis demon. Can he dream? Eez he able to love?"
That was... unexpected. "Huh?"
She dragged out her response a bit. "Uhhm... yes. Yes he can." Chrno had shared his dreams with her from time to time, and even though it might seem like a simple thing, she really liked the feeling of intimacy, it gave her. It was a bit like him telling stories. As for love... "Both of them." He definitely cared for her, a lot even, she knew that, and that thought never failed to bring a little smile to her lips. But she also knew, that he didn't spend all those years in a tomb out of a fear of sunlight. Thinking about that made her both sad for him and slightly jealous, even though it all happened a long time ago. She had once thought about, if he would ever do the same for her. A part of her almost wished, that he would be inclined to, albeit a very small part. "Why?"
"I zought az much. I vas just making sure." Obviously the reply was meant to brush the question aside for now. "You know childe." She stirred the tea with a spoon. "A demon vit ze ability to love and dream, eez very remarkable. Most, if not all, have forgotten zat a long time ago. You are very lucky to have such a demon az a friend."
Well, quite a bit more than a friend really...
The nun felt heat rise to her cheeks, blushing a little more when she thought about Chrno, and their time away from prying eyes. Especially the times when they were alone in the dark, although night really wasn't a requirement. I hope he gets better soon. She smiled to herself at the somewhat selfish thought. And Chrno's the one they call 'sinner'.
But of course that wasn't the real reason. She loved him. More than she had thought possible, and she couldn't bear to see him like this. She had never actually seen him sick before.
Never seen him this... helpless...
She knew he had probably lived more than ten times as long as her. But in his weakened state he almost appeared like a child to her. The child portrayed so deceptively by his small form. She hadn't previously realized, how much she actually depended on him. Needed him. She feared she would shatter like glass, if he wasn't there to lend her his strength. If there was even a remote way, she could ease whatever illness he had, she would do it.
Even if I'll have to challenge God himself.
"What? Oh yes... sorry. Yeah, I guess I am quite lucky." The response was a bit hurried and carried a trace of her embarrassment for drifting off. She really needed to stop doing that. Her eyes turned to ther old woman, who smiled knowingly.
"Eet eez good you feel zat vay about him. Ahh, ze tea eez ready now." The gypsy took a pair of wooden tongs to fish out the herbs from the cup throwing them in a waste basket. With the cup in hand she approached the table. "Here you go childe. Eet eez made especially for you, I am sure you veel like eet. And ze cup eez also von of my best, eet veel hold ze tea nice and varm for a long time." She put it down in front of Rosette.
"Thanks." The tea did smell wonderful, though she couldn't quite place the flavor. The best word would probably be herbal.
"Try eet, young von." the fortune teller said as she sat down. "Eet veel ease your nerves."
Rosette did actually feel a bit tense, now that she thought about it. She took the cup in both hands, and brought it to her mouth, drinking a small sip.
She hadn't thought that a mere tea could taste this good. And not only was the taste great, but the heat from the liquid made her calmer, and the aroma seemed to clear her mind making her more attentive. She put it down again and looked at the woman in front of her, both hands still firmly on the cup.
"See... I told you eet vas good." The fortune teller leaned a bit forward as if to ensure she had the nun's full attention. "Now childe I veel tell you vhat you need to know." She folded her hands. "Ze first zing eez zat a demon body eez very strong. Eet eez so strong zat eet never gets sick."
Rosette gripped the cup a bit tighter.
Ok that's it for the first chapter, I know it leaves a lot of unanswered questions, and it's probably only safe to say, that whatever's wrong with the bed-ridden demon, it's not your average flu. Anyway, hope you liked it, and whether you did or not, I'd be happy if you leave a review telling me what you think.