Chapter 19

The Forge Darkens

Epilogue

Hwoarang awoke to find Jin was no longer beside him in the bed. The sheets were tangled beneath his body, ripped away in the second part of last nights passion. Rubbing his eyes, he turned to view the red digital display beside him. 8am. Jins match was scheduled for 9am.

Throwing on his discarded jeans from last night, the Blood Talon exited the bedroom, sienna falling on his lovers form as the Kata Jin had been performing followed motion to block, kick to stance. He leaned his shoulder against the wall and watched, noting every bead of sweat that slid like rain from the Japanese youths flushed, working body.

Following Lings late night visit, the two had fell into rapacious glory that started in the kitchen and made its way back into the bedroom. The hunger present in both of them had been shocking after such a glorious work out not an hour prior…and Hwoarang had screamed his lovers name in dark debauchery as Jin sought complete control over him. Such a rare thing to happen had become a craving, as deep as the desire for Jin's blood on his tongue. Where they soaring toward Heaven or crashing into Hell?

Jin bowed east, signaling the end of the Kata. He grasped his blue towel from the floor and drew it up against his features, patting lightly at the sweat that pooled just above his thick brows. "You're up earlier than I expected." He smiled, eyes drinking in Hwoarangs form, jeans undone…copper tendrils wild around such angular features. Last night his fiery Korean had been ravished, just as eagerly as Jin himself had been taken not long before that.

"Your side of the bed was cold…and I wanted to wish you luck before you head off for the tournament." Hwoarang returned the smile that formed over Jins lips. "Where's my good morning kiss, baby?"

Jin drew in toward Hwoarang, his fingers snaring the belt loops of the Blood Talons half open jeans. "As though I would miss the pleasure?"

Hwoarangs fingers slid into Jins ebony mane, working through the sweaty tendrils as he drew his lovers face toward him. "I have better uses for your mouth…than words."

Jin fell in against the Koreans mouth, his tongue twining past familiar lips to see the slick muscle mate he could never taste enough of. The salty sweat of his skin pressed into the tender but already healing area of the Blood Talons chest he had torn into the night before. He could feel the tensing of Hwoarangs body at the slight pain caused by concentrated salt in the wound…in turn, the Blood Talon drank from the kiss, deepening it to a dangerous level.

Jin pressed back slowly, breaking the intimacy with a slow hiss of breath. "I have to save what strength I have left, though I doubt I will use even half of it with your former lover."

Hwoarang let the smile fade from his lips. "That's over with, Jin. I told you, that was one fucking week out of my life. It's you and me…for real."

Jin cleared his throat and tried to regain his smile, though he had awoken to train with one single purpose in mind…to devastate the British Boxer…who never should have made it this far in the tournament to begin with. Since when was Boxing a martial art?

"My words have gotten away from me." Jin said, raising the towel to once more blot the cooling sweat that rode against his features as he quickly changed the subject. "I am worried about your fight against Mishima Kazuya…you have seen his skill first hand…and you know now, it is unnatural."

"Well, let's just see dear ol' daddy start turning purple and sprouting wings in this fight. I know his secret now…and I have a score to settle with him. I will carve Changs name into his skin with my spurs. You can make bank on that, baby." Hwoarang huffed, defenses going up like a prison wall at the mere concern Jin had. "A week ago, he caught me off guard. I'm not bringing a fucking knife to a gunfight this time."

"Just be careful, alright. I am going to grab my gear and head out…" Jin brushed a hand back through his hair after righting the towel about his massive shoulders.

"Do you want me to drop you off?" Hwoarang shuffled his bare foot against the floor.

"No, I could use the stretch to prepare. I will come back here after the fight or do you want me to find out where your match is and go there instead?" Jin asked as he gathered the shirt he had brought out from the bedroom with him earlier. Removing the towel, he slid the white cotton T over his upper body, taking up his gloves, arm and shin guards and placing them on the leather couch.

"I will meet you back here. Probably will be just as quick. Want me to stop and pick up anything on the way home?" Hwoarang asked in mid yawn.

"Just bring yourself home, I do not think I need anything else." Sliding his sneakers and warm up jacket on, Jin tied off the gear he was prepared to carry and slung it over his shoulder. "Seung Roh. Be careful, alright?"

Hwoarang waved the words off with his usual flippant gestures. "Pops needs to be careful of me. I will see you later."

Jin leaned in to taste of Hwoarangs lips one last time…..

(Chapter Break)

Hwoarang stepped out of the shower and dried himself off. Sliding on his dobok, and tying off his dobok-ki he drew into the living room and grasped his pack of cigarettes. Sparking the cylinder to life, the Blood Talon breathed in the smoke and let the nicotine do its beautiful work.

Lings' words haunted him. The shock and horror in her face were ripe in his thoughts as he imagined what the scene must have unfolded to for her. He could barely recall the first time he had tasted Jins blood…somewhere in the pleasure of their first night together, the night he snuck into the Compound through Jins balcony. How had he managed to not crave the taste of Jins blood for so much time, only to find himself wanton of it at every possible avenue? Perhaps it had been the change from small droplets on accident to willful sips in the heat of pleasure.

Eitherway, Hwoarang wondered if something inside of him would change…as the change overcame Jin…subtle at first but more and more drastic when it arrived. He did not fear such a thing…merely what it would do to them..when would they stop…if they could?

Flicking the ashes from his cigarette into an overfilled ashtray, Hwoarang began to slide on his boots when he heard a crackle at the window…like a door opening too suddenly that releases pressure from another place.

The Korean was up in a shot, his cigarette falling from his lips with the motion, his bare foot crushing it inadvertently as the door to the apartment was kicked open.

"Sergeant! He is here!" Came the first guttural words of his native Korean. A flurry of soldiers filtered in, flanking him on right and left with the scopes of guns falling against his open dobok.

"You gotta be fucking kidding me.." Hwoarang hissed and fell into stance….

(Chapter Break)

Jin Kazama ran through the Yurei district as a dark, foreboding feeling came over his previously slow and even walk. After besting Steve in a bloody battle where he felt his pride vindicated, Jin had been eagerly looking forward to returning to Hwoarang…even if a part of him desperately wanted to first go to the match sight where the Blood Talon would be fighting against his sire. Jin had little trust of Mishima Kazuya…and now, those fears were wild and realized.

Scanning with his mind and thoughts, Jin fought desperately to find Hwoarang. There was only blackness…anger and pain. Those feelings pushed the Japanese youth faster on the path…equal in pace to what flight the devil within him so desperately wanted to take.

Grasping the door ledge, Jin rushed inside the hall, only noticing as he paused to breath…that the outside door had been ripped off the hinges. Looking up the stairs, the Japanese youth felt a sudden rising fear…

…Taking the steps two at a time, Jin came upon the ghastly sight. Hwoarangs door had been kicked in, the force enough to splinter the hinges from the wood itself. Tearing into the apartment, what met the Japanese youth…was frightening.

The apartment had been torn to shreds. Couch overturned, broken glass from the windows littering the floor…small odds and ends laying across the room as though a great battle had raged in the dwelling.

"Seung!" Jin cried out, rushing into the bedroom and bathroom checking and finding no sight of Hwoarang. He returned to the living room, the scene of greatest disaster and knelt down on the floor. A crushed cigarette, half way smoked lay amidst the rubble…blood on glass…Hwoarangs blood.

The Japanese youth cried out with a dark rage that threatened to shake the apartment building to its foundation….

…and there, in the rubble of the life he and Hwoarang had begun to build…was a handwritten note.

"Final Stage. Go to the Honmaru. I will be waiting for you."

(This completes the second installment of "The Sword Maker Trilogy." Be on the look out for the final story, "The Re-Forging of the Blade (Reveals a Superior Design), found on the Mishima Compound. Thank you for every review!!)