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It's cold. The frigid air is blowing against my face, forcing my breath back inside my body and yanking at my hair, almost hard enough to hurt. The snowflakes settle against my face, lingering on my eyelashes and burning my skin with their scornful mockery of kisses. Impatiently, I reach up and brush them away, leaving a wide crimson streak behind. The blood is leaking down my arm and onto my palm, signifying that my time is near.

My bare feet make no discernable noise against the ice as I make my way toward the peak that juts out like a dagger piercing the night sky in it's wrath. There is no one else here-- why should there be? No willing ice apparation would come here, other than to throw their sons into the freezing sea below to die. Among the more superstitous of my former kind, it is said this place is cursed, haunted by the vengeful ghosts of the infants that were cast away.

Fools, the lot of them. Because of their idiocy, I am here now, waiting for death to wrap me in it's freezing embrace. Because of my mother's people, I have never even spoken to my beloved brother, and I can no longer approach my sister--no, that's not fair. I knew the price, and I accepted it, regardless of the pain it would bring.

My name is Usagi. On my dying day, let me tell you the story of my life.

Even before I was born, I could see and hear, and I could sense my sibilings that were beside me. I could feel my sister's body radiating soothing coolness, and my brother projecting fiery heat. What I felt like to them, I will never know. I never got the chance to ask.

I was the last to be born, and I nearly killed my mother coming into this world. My birth was long, difficult and bloody, and when I finally emerged, my mother gently cleaned my body and lay me beside my siblings, tucking the tear gem she had shed for me into my hand. I remember my brother being the only warm thing in that freezing cold world, so I had curled up against him as best as my infant body could, trying my best to shut out everything else. The fire that surrounded him did not hurt me, rather, it reached out and covered me as well.

I remember the other Koorimes, how they screamed in horror when they spied the flames surrounding my brother and I, waking my sister so that her shrieks mingled with their own. I recall their hands, snatching me away from him, wrapping my brother in sacred cloth and bearing him away, and just like that, he was gone. Later, when I was old enough to understand, my mother told me he had been thrown in the freezing sea below Ice World to perish.

The debate that raged afterward, about whether or not they should kill me as well, dragged on for weeks, all during which they kept me away from what was left of my family. There had been another third child several centuries ago, and when her brother was killed by their own mother, no less, she slaughtered more than half of the women on the island in her grief before she took her own life. Eventually, it was ruled that there was no danger in keeping me as long as my sister was safe, and I was returned to my mother.

As we were growing up, I discovered my sister, Yukina, did not recall our brother, Hiei. I saw no point in telling our family history-- I would only break her heart. So I kept my silence, biting my tongue and mourning in secret.

Seventy-five years passed on, and so did our mother, grieving for her lost son with her last breath. This was Yukina's first encounter with death, and for years afterward we mourned, our tears mingling on each other's cheeks before they became unforgiving crystal. The leaden weight in our hearts would not lift, for without our mother, we had no one left but each other. Since then, I had possessed two shadows, and only one of them is my own. The other was small and slight, with large crimson eyes and sea green hair. It was almost as if Yukina feared to let me from sight, as if she looked away, I would vanish.

Two months after we turned one hundred and fifty, her half-imagined fears became reality.

And it was solely my fault.


White: Alright, it's pretty short, and pretty vague BUT IT WOULDN'T LEAVE ME ALONE! HAVE MERCY!

Yusuke: You're a fine one to be talking about MERCY! What about all those other fics you still haven't finished?

White: (blushes)...shut up, Yusuke... I've learned to go with the flow. I write pretty crappy stuff if I'm in a Yu Yu Hakusho mood and I'm trying to write Fullmetal Alchemist.

Yusuke: Tch...excuses, excuses...

White: You watch your mouth! I have a keyboard and I KNOW how to use it!

(Yusuke and White begin arguing loudly)

Hiei: (rolls eyes) Please review, or the idiot woman will start crying and drown us all...