Kaze is Japanese for wind, okay? I wanted an odd title.
This is a Tithe fanfic – a book that I finished reading only yesterday. Apart from the fact that I thought it wasn't that well planned out, it had the greatest ending ever! I loved it!
So, here we go. This is set immediately after the book.
And another thing. I've just been browsing FF and they bloody have a cross between Inuyasha and Tithe! AGH! My favourite show in Tithe? I'd have thought nobody wrote for Tithe, let alone pull it together with my new obsession! It shows how wrong I was. Sigh.
Song of the Unseelie
It was surprising how quickly Kaye settled back into normal life. With Janet's funeral over, the casket shut and the funeral service not taking any more bodies for the day, Kaye had expected to feel some sort of… emptiness. No matter how hard she tried to search for it, she came up blank.
Ellen pulled up in her Pinto, looking a bit ragged from lack of sleep. Her window was rolled down, despite the autumn chill, and she was hanging a cigarette out of the window. The funeral parlour was dark, overshadowing the road. Kaye was sat on the kerb with her head in her hands, smiling loosely.
She was staring off into the distance, her blonde hair blowing in the wind about her. Ellen sighed and dropped the cigarette. She'd pulled to the side of the road a few feet away from her daughter. Opening her car door, she reached in her pocket for her pack of Marlboro.
"Hey, kiddo," she called, waving an arm.
Kaye was distracted, staring at the dank building opposite in quiet fascination. Janet was still somewhere inside of there… with her red curls fanned out around her – looking like some sort of Amazonian queen… a dead queen, but a queen, nonetheless. Kaye thought of Nicnevin, and shuddered.
Ellen walked over, her footsteps punishing the ground with the help of ridiculously high heels. Kaye turned doggedly, her eyes still with that far-away look in them. Ellen felt a churning in her stomach that wasn't wholly to do with the wine she'd tipped back this morning.
She put a reassuring arm on Kaye's shoulder, sighing. "I'm sorry, Kaye," she said softly, her image of a good-parent tarnished by the cigarette hanging out of her mouth. It rolled as she spoke, reminding Kaye of some low-life Mafia member. It made her snigger at least.
She stood up slowly, pulling her jacket tighter around her. The wind was blowing harshly, but she ignored it. Taking some gloves out of her jacket pocket, she made for the car. Despite her attempt at glamour, she didn't feel ready to touch iron just yet. The memory of smelling it – feeling it – was too great.
She got into the backseat of the car, sighing. Her lips tingled where Roiben had kissed them only moments before. But now he was gone – back to his under-hill kingdom. He had to do whatever new monarchs do, and Kaye was fine with it – so long as she wasn't kept in the dark for long.
Ellen climbed into the driver's seat, adjusting the rear-view mirror. She only did it when she was thinking. Anxious eyes glanced at Kaye through the mirror, searching for hers.
"Sweetie, are you okay?" Ellen pried, turning the key in the ignition.
Kaye nodded and attempted plastering a smile on her face. It must have worked because Ellen turned around, satisfied. Kaye felt fake and outcast. Digging harder into her pockets, she pulled out the pixie sticks Corny had given her.
She smiled ironically, opening the cap and drinking the sherbet. Who said pixie dust couldn't be edible?
Ellen broke the silence that ensued as she turned out of the road and headed for home. "I saw that odd boy with you, kiddo. Robin, right? Why didn't he stay and wait with you?"
Kaye shrugged, not wanting to answer. She tilted her head back, feeling the sherbet explode on her tongue. It was a pleasant feeling, having a tickling sensation career around inside her mouth. One she usually got only while kissing.
Ellen realised her daughter didn't want to talk – which was fine, considering the circumstances. Kaye had grown up with Janet, withdrawing into herself would be normal after the girl's death.
Ellen tapped an anonymous rhythm on the steering wheel as she drove, frequently glancing at Kaye via the rear-view mirror. Her daughter had been acting odd this past week. Especially around Halloween.
Ellen knew that Kaye was a free-spirit, disappearing and reappearing at will, but recently she'd been going out more often. And coming back home with boys. Well, only one boy. The Robin guy.
Ellen frowned, but her face showed that she was recalling a fond memory. She shook her head as she pulled into her mother's street. He really was an odd boy. Twisted, strange, yet undeniably handsome.
What made Ellen laugh was that despite her mother's words, Kaye had managed to hold a boy – despite her smoking and lack of education. Ellen wondered whether Robin found it endearing. He certainly didn't act like any rocker stereotype.
Kaye must have met him at a rave or something, yet he seemed quite harmless. No body piercings, no tattoos. He was actually polite. Ellen found it all a bit muddling.
"We're home, Kaye. I think Grams will go easy on you for a while but its best to play it safe,"
Kaye glanced at her mother's back, her eyes dancing. "Is that supposed to be a warning?"
Ellen shrugged and stopped the car, pulling on the handbrake. "All I'm saying is no wild parties. Lay low for a while; you need to relax after what happened…"
"Sure. Whatever," Kaye replied hastily, waving an arm. She didn't like to be reminded of that night at the rave – of the kelpie pulling Janet off of the dock. Of diving beneath the water for her friend, yet ending up spread-eagled on the beach with nothing but her body…
"Kaye? Kaye, did you hear what I just said?" Ellen prompted, holding on to the roof of the car. She was waiting outside; Kaye was still in the backseat. She was shivering. Her mind snapped back into reality and she climbed out, taking deep breaths.
"You said that I should talk to Grams. Maybe she'd have something to help me sleep tonight,"
Ellen narrowed her eyes. "Just because you heard me, doesn't mean you were listening,"
Kaye shrugged and slammed the car door, applying more force than she meant to. All she wanted was to go to sleep – lie down, rest…
"Call it what you want, 'cause I'm going to bed,"
Ellen sniffed in reply. "Best place for ya, kiddo," she sighed, before locking up the car and following Kaye into the house.
When Kaye had dropped down onto her bed, calling for her two rats to come and dance on her stomach, she picked up the cordless phone from its spot beneath the mattress on the floor. The mattress that Roiben had slept on.
Kaye had a sudden urge to lie where he had, see if it felt like he was there with her. She didn't dare. Instead she dialled Janet's house number. Except Janet's not alive anymore. It's not her house anymore… After around three rings, Corny picked it up.
Kaye smiled with her lips, but it didn't reach her eyes. Corny had sounded tired – he always did – but there was a new tone to his voice that made him out to be depressed. He had enough reason to be.
"Hey, Corny, it's me. Kaye."
There was a rustle on the other end of the phone as Corny moved about. Then there was a slam of a door and a curse. A second later, Corny was back. "Hey, how's my favourite pixie doing?"
Kaye blushed immediately. She didn't know whether to snap at him, to yell at him to be more careful, or thank him. She sighed. It sounded too much like a pet name for anyone to notice, anyway. "Favourite pixie? I'm the only pixie you know," she jibed almost flirtatiously.
She sat upright on her bed, her rats falling into her lap with simultaneous squeals. Kaye ignored them.
Corny laughed slightly but there was no humour in his voice. "I wanted to talk to you," he told her.
Kaye smiled. "And?"
"How's the glamour?"
"Wouldn't you like to know?" Kaye replied. "It's fine, Corny. How is your collection of comics?"
Corny grunted as if moving and then a minute later Kaye heard the slap of paper. "I found out what those Japanese comics are called. Manga, apparently. I found a new comic: Eerie Queerie. You should check it out."
Kaye stifled a laugh. The title, not to mention Corny's genre of comics, put her off. "I'll pass."
"No, really, Kaye – it's quite tame."
"Is this why you wanted to talk to me, Corny?" she asked, not meaning to be abrupt. Her patience was wearing slightly thin. Even if she was the one who'd started off this topic…
Corny took a deep breath. "No. I need to see you – now, if you can get out."
Kaye frowned. "Getting past Grams will be a problem,"
Her grandmother would never let her out of the house. Not now something had happened to Janet. Even if Kaye pleaded that that had happened at the pier, Grams still wouldn't listen.
"Just sneak out, Kaye. Please, it's important,"
Kaye slapped a hand over her face and then began rubbing her temples, grimacing. She sighed.
"I'll meet you at the trailer park gates in ten minutes," she groaned.
She could almost imagine Corny smile. "Gotcha." The phone line went dead.
Kaye frowned and went over to her mirror, setting the rats by her dolls. They liked playing with the porcelain figures, nibbling at the lavender and rose dresses with interest.
Kaye didn't notice this as she lowered her face by the dresser. She held out a hand over her face, feeling a tingling spread over the back of her wrist, out to her palm and through her fingers. Her magic.
Without a word, she began touching up her glamour – adding curls in her hair, redoing her makeup and making herself look respectable.
Then she turned to her outfit. Sighing, she thought up a jumper and jeans combination, not feeling very creative.
It wasn't as if she were dressing up for Roiben. She didn't have time to fiddle.
She clambered out of the window, wearing a white jumper and faded blue jeans with rips at the knees. Clambering down into the tree, she shut the window behind her so that her rats wouldn't escape.
As soon as she had reached the ground, Lutie-loo appeared out of nowhere – shimmering in the morning sun like a teardrop glistening in the moonlight. Her tiny wings fluttered and she span around, circling Kaye.
"Happy, happy, happy!" she chanted, waving her arms around. She landed on Kaye's shoulder, twinkling like a firefly. Kaye couldn't help but smile.
"Why are you happy, Lutie?"
The faerie waved a finger, scolding her. "No, no, Kaye. You do not have to have a reason to be happy!" She chirruped, before kicking her legs softly as Kaye began to head for the trailer park. Lutie began to sing on the way, smiling dreamily.
"The King is waiting,
Holding out his arms,
For his special girl,
To fall for his charms.
She waits in the land,
And he waits for her,
To be his bride.
She's sad in her skin,
A changeling girl,
Who lives as a human,
In a human world.
And as she waits,
In her tower for night,
To see the King,
A darkened knight.
She thinks of him,
As she cries and cries,
For the moon to arise…"
Kaye stopped abruptly and glanced at Lutie, who was perched innocently on her left shoulder.
The faerie smiled. "Yes?"
"Lutie…" Kaye began, "Did you just make that up?"
Lutie looked surprised. She nodded. "Yes, why? Can't you do something like that?"
Kaye shook her head. She let out a breath. "You're a talented faerie, Lutie-loo."
Lutie giggled and kissed Kaye's cheek. "Happy, happy, happy!" she sang, before gliding in the air, her wings fluttering.
But Kaye was thinking. Thinking about what Lutie had just sang. And he waits for her…to be his bride. Kaye blinked twice, and then began to chase after the twirling faerie, who was dancing and pirouetting in the air.
"Lutie! Have you spoken to Roiben?"
The faerie giggled. "Yes, yes!" she sang, still dancing and not looking at Kaye.
The breath caught in Kaye's throat. "What did he–? What did he say?" she finished.
Lutie laughed, her voice sickly sweet like honey. "Pretty things, methinks," she replied.
Kaye opened her mouth, but before she could ask what she wanted to ask – she saw Roiben leaning against a tree in the distance, watching her with calculating eyes.