Wolfie: Alright time for another chapter! Fair warning though this is the second to last one.
Kuwabara: Aww do we win the tournament? And I don't have to fight anymore spiders right?
Yusuke: Shut up and play your cards.
Wolfie: Alright everyone after this story is complete I plan on going back to re-write it since I started this while I was still in high school.
Kurama: You're going to do this all over again?
Wolfie: It won't take nearly as long. I just need to repair the damage my inexperienced brain cooked up when I first started this...Now on to the story!
Chapter 17: And the Winners Are….
Raven walked up to the ring and watched her opponent do the same. "Hi everyone, Koto here, your favorite tournament announcer! It's down to the last two fights of the tournament and it looks as if our next match up is Raven from Team Urameshi and Rapugaki from Team Hikoshi. Let's hope for a little more blood and violence this time, neh? Those last couple of matches were pretty disappointing."
Receiving a complaint from the higher ups that paid for the tournament, Koto glared at them but hurried up her little speech. "Currently the scores are tied. If Raven manages to win this battle then Team Urameshi will be one more step to winning the battle. If she loses then their team captain, Yusuke Urameshi, would have to win his battle or a 'Death Match' would be initiated to decide a winner. So fighters, please step into the ring so we could start this battle!"
Rapugaki stepped into the ring and they looked each other up and down. He was a tall, human looking guy and wore nothing on his upper body but a black trench coat left open to show off his bare chest, one sleeve falling off his shoulder to show that his upper body was cover in tattoos. Black gloves with a silver, double banded watch on his right hand with a second silver band just inches above that.
He wore two braided chains around his neck with a long pendant hanging from the shorter of the two. His pants were black leather with two belts around his waist. The top belt was dark brown with crystal diamonds placed in intervals along it's length. The second was grey with small, round, metal studs trailing around it. On his left leg was a strap full of small multi-colored vials in the slots.
"Has anyone told you how beautiful you are?" He asked when Raven went up to shake hands. He grabbed hers and gave it a kiss. This close to him Raven could see that his eyes were a distinct mixture of green and grey causing a foggy forest effect.
"Alas, it is a shame to fight one of such beauty." He finished with a bow and stepped back, receiving cries from the girls in the crowd as Koto rambled on about his handsomeness. Most of the calls were directed towards Raven in the form of threats as none of the crowd had heard what he had said to Raven.
"Too bad for you then. I have no problem fighting you if it will get my friends back." Raven replied just as civilly. She couldn't see that Hiei was behind her practically burning a hole into her opponent with his eyes. His face clearly said 'Mine.'
"Whenever you guys are ready to fight we can begin this show. It's not like the tournament is going to finish itself you know!" Koto cried over the loud speakers. She was waiting on confirmation from the two fighters. When the both looked at her she nodded and announced for the fight to begin.
Rapugaki charged at Raven instantly and she barely managed to dodge his first attack due to the suddeness of it. Spinning sideways she landed to the left of him and sent out a kick forcing him to jump back in a small retreat. Her victory was short lived though as he came at her again using a punch to disguise the kick he had in store for her. She stumbled back slightly as his foot made contact with her stomach, knocking the wind out of her.
'Not nearly as hard as Hiei could kick though.' She thought and moved to the far side of the arena, drawing her sword in the process. She took a slice at Rapugaki as he initiated another attack and barely missed severing his arm from his body.
"Not bad, but you're going to have to do better than that if you have any hope of beating me." He laughed at her. He appeared to be enjoying himself as if this were a game and not truly a battle of life or death. His hand idly reached down and grabbed one of the vials strapped to his leg. "Besides, the fun can't end yet. I haven't even got to try out my newest invention. It would be a shame to waste this opportunity don't you think?"
"Bring it on asshole!" Raven replied and then turned her mind to Hiei's direction. -Hiei, any idea what could be in those vials?-
-Not a clue onna. His mind is locked tight and it's nearly impossible for me to break through his barriers. He'll reveal what they are sooner than I could.- Hiei replied, his mind focused on her opponent. -Just keep your wits about you and don't you dare let your guard down for a second. He's plotting something…What the…?!-
Hiei quickly pulled out of her mind allowing her to completely focus on her opponent. Raven drew, about ready to make a retort, drew her complete attention back to the arena to see Rapugaki running around at lightning fast speeds drizzling the goo from one of the vials into a pattern. She tried as hard as she could to pinpoint his movements but she could only catch minor glimpses of him before he moved off again.
Finally he stopped running and stood in the center of the arena, directly in front of his goo trail. Raven could almost make something out of it but was distracted when she heard him whisper something. "Evolve."
The goo on the ground began to glow a bright radio-active green color. The edges of the pattern flowed in on itself while the center raised up to form the head of a very ugly glob-like creature. As the creature took form his body appeared to be nothing but contained liquid. Dark green lines traveled through the form as if they were veins. The finished creation stood behind it's master, awaiting orders.
"This is my very own creation. It takes the formula from the vials, mixes it with my demon energy and takes on an appearance according to the demons in it's surrounding area. I call it Morph. The best part about it is, it gets smarter and stronger every time I summon it to fight."
"Great." Raven muttered. "And here I was thinking this would be an easy battle."
As soon as the words were out of her mouth the creature attacked, swinging one of its gelatinous fists at her. She barely dodged the attack and got away with few drops of liquid on her skin. She glanced at the liquid and saw that the spots that hit her were soaking through her clothes like acid. She quickly removed her cloak and shirt before the liquid could seep through, leaving only a tight tank top that had not been hit. She looked at the creature and growled. "Alright, no more Miss Nice Girl. You're going down!"
"Oh goody." Hawk muttered receiving a look from the others. Of course she would know something they didn't but none of them knew how she was going to beat something made of demonic acid. "This is going to get real interesting."
The team looked at each other and shrugged. None of them knew what she was talking about but they hoped it was a good thing. Instead Yusuke, Kuwabara and Botan insisted on cheering Raven on…who steadfastly ignored them.
Raven held out her sword in front of her and began chanting, all the while dodging the acidic goo monster's clumsy attacks. Dividing her concentration she managed to avoid being hit with any more acid drops. As she chanted her voice sounded louder and seemed to carry throughout the stadium.
"Hilt of shadow,
Tongue of flame
Come to me
I call you by name
KAGE NO HI."
In her hand where her sword had been was now a weapon of fire and shadows. The blade was a burning flame that descended down to the hilt which was a dark smokey color. She twisted the sword around a couple times. Yusuke and Kuwa's surprise somehow reached her ears and she could hear them wondering how she created something like that. "Let's finish this ugly."
She attacked the giant blob, swinging her sword at him. At first he seemed to just move around the blade and not get harmed by it. Then after a short while he seemed to be slowing as a light green slime oozed out of the very places she had cut. Within minutes the monster was unable to defend himself properly and Raven swung her sword. A well placed slice cut the beast in half, right where the dark green lines forged together. It instantly dropped to the ground.
Raven turned to her true opponent, Rapugaki, who was staring at her in surprised shock. "No one has ever been able to defeat my creations! How could you do that in less than four minutes?"
Rapugaki was truly stunned as he watched his creation burn away into nothing. The only thing that snapped him out of it was the sight of Raven moving closer to him. He took a slight step back as he weighed his odds. "It seems that I have underestimated you and in doing so have doomed myself. There is truly no way for me to finish this with my life."
Raven kept walking towards him, blade drawn, tip pointed directly at his chest. Before he could give up he had backed to the edge of the platform and stopped. Raven seeing his predicament feinted an attack and caused him to fall out of the ring without looking like he had given up.
"Smart choice." Raven said as she followed him out of the ring. They spoke so softly that no one else was able to hear over the jeers from the crowd. "I would have killed you had it come down to it."
"I am no fool, I saw my death in your gaze." Rapugaki said as he stood up. "I may be punished to the point of wishing for death should my master find out that I forfeited the fight but I can see it is nothing compared to what you would do given the same position. I will leave here with at least some of my dignity intact thanks to you."
Raven nodded. "It was a smart choice. I don't like having to kill with this blade if I can help it. Now get out of here before they begin to think you threw the match once I beat your creature. Even if it is true." She gave a smirk that would make Hiei proud.
Rapugaki bowed to her and started to walk away. As Koto started calling for the final two fighters the opposing team's last fighter walked up to Rapugaki and started harassing him. Whatever he said, Raven could not hear but it caused Rapugaki to grab the demon by the throat and crush his neck. The demon's head rolled from his body as it fell to the floor. Not even stopping to glance at anyone else, Rapugaki just exited through the door and left.
"Well ok, I guess that settles that…" Koto mumbled to herself. She was a bit shocked that one would kill their own teammate in the final battle of a tournament when there was still a chance of winning. But rules were rules and there were no more fighters on the opposing team so Team Urameshi won by default…even though they did earn it. She spent the next few minutes talking to the crowd and Raven returned to her friends.
Raven allowed her sword to disappear. Hiei rushed to her side as she stumbled and nearly fell to the ground. Her blade clattered on the floor next to them as she struggled not to pass out. Hawk, being the first one over there, helped her put the sword back in its sheath before the rest of the group got there. -I'm okay Hiei, that move just takes a lot of energy to perform so I don't use it unless I absolutely have to.-
-Hn, baka onna. I wasn't going to lecture you.- He told her and wrapped his arm in a firm grip around her side, allowing her to lean on him as they left the arena floor. The rest of the gang was just about to them when a stranger walked up behind them causing the trio to turn around and be on the defense.
"Congradulations, you won the tournament. Your prize will be awaiting you in your rooms upon returning as well as passage home for everyone." The man told them and turned his cream colored eyes to Raven. "I don't know how my master feels about you but I am highly impressed with your fighting style. You have done well in your training."
"Who are you?" Raven demanded, forcing her body to stand upright without the aid of Hiei. She doubted whether she had enough energy left to fight this demon but she wasn't going to allow the others to push her to the side.
"My name is Rikoshugi. My master is Lord Muteki, I have served him for many years now and yet I do not know his reasons for bringing you to this tournament." The man said before turning away from the oncoming group. "I wish you luck on your journey. You will need it to get out of here as these demons are very sore that Urameshi and his 'pet' demons have won the tournament yet again." He left the group without once looking back. Unfortunately he had given Koto plenty of time to get down to the arena for an 'interview'.
Once the inquisition was out of the way they were free to return to their rooms for a night of rest and then the trip home in the morning. They entered Yusuke's room to find Keiko and Yukina waiting for them on the couch. Both were wearing brand new kimonos that complimented their coloring. The gang stood there for a moment, stunned to see them unharmed…until the door swung shut somehow.
Keiko and Yukina looked at them with curiosity on their faces. "Well? Isn't anyone going to say anything?" She stood up and tears began forming in her eyes. "Yusuke? Didn't you miss me?"
"Oh Keiko…" He said and rushed to her, hugging her tightly to him. He impacted her hard enough that it sent both of them falling to the couch. Yusuke was able to turn just in time to keep from landing on Keiko.
"Yukina! My love, my darling, you're safe now!" Kuwabara cried and began fawning over the ice maiden. The others allowed the two couples to get their greetings out of the way before rushing them. They all began talking excitedly while Hiei took his normal spot at the window.
-Aren't you gonna tell her?- Raven said once she got her initial greetings out of the way. She set on the floor by the window Hiei was in, next to his feet so they could see each other easily. Hiei didn't glare at her like she had expected. He just closed is eyes as if he were thinking. Irritated Raven growled. She got up and walked over to the ice koorime.
"Yukina could I talk to you for a bit?" She asked kindly. The girl nodded her head and told Kuwabara she'd be right back. After receiving glares from the big oaf they walked out the door and stood in the hallway. She led the girl out of the building, out towards the gardens in the back, all the while sensing that Hiei was following them. How he got away unnoticed she didn't know.
"What did you want to talk to me about?" Yukina asked as they sat down on the stone benches. She was so happy to be back with her friends that she didn't mind the long hesitation.
"I have some information on your brother." Raven said carefully, giving Hiei every chance she could to butt in and tell her himself that Yukina was his sister. "But first I need to know something and I want you to really think about it. Would you still wish to meet your brother regardless of who he was in the past? Even if he was a thief and a murderer and enjoyed it? If he was good then it would be a moot point so I won't even bother asking on that part. But I need to know if you are willing to meet him no matter who he used to be?"
Yukina looked at her thoughtfully for a full minute before giving her answer. Could she really love a man who had done evil in any of the three worlds? Her answer was… "Yes even if he was some cruel person I would want to meet him. I would even help him see the wrong he was doing and help him become someone good. Someone everyone could be proud of. I already have an idea of what my brother is like and I'd rather know the truth then a false hope. Even if the truth is bad."
-There you have it Hiei. You know she already cares about you, she just admitted that she would love you unconditionally. What more do you need? Now, do I have to tell her or will you demon up and do something you should have done a long time ago?-
Hiei didn't even get a chance to respond to her demand as the link was shut down almost instantly. Raven took a breath and finished what she had started.
"Yukina, I know who your brother is and I know he cares about you very much. Enough so that he chose to hide his existence from you in order to keep you happy, safe and innocent. So don't think he doesn't care." She took a deep breath and tried to let it out slowly. "Yukina, your brother is…"
"Me." Came Hiei's voice from behind Raven
Hiei: Onna...Thank you
Wolfie: *cringing while awaiting an attack* wait...what?
Yusuke, Kurama and Kuwabara stare at Hiei.
Kuwabara: I think the shrimp just thanked her.
Wolfie hits Kuwa with a cast iron pan
Wolfie: Don't call Hiei a shrimp. Now what do we say to make me happy?
Kuwabara: Please read and review...beforeshehitsmewiththepanaga in!
Wolfie: *Pats Kuwa* Good boy Ja ne everyone!