-1Everlasting, Chapter 2.
Woot! Finally finished an update. It isn't that I stopped writing, it's just that, I've been busy. That and while I did get a lot of writing done recently, it's been, well, for a TON of updates. Not just one.
So, in the meantime, this is the first update to get finished recently! Enjoy!
"Wait, Kanako is immortal too?!" Keitaro said aghast.
Hina was furious upon hearing Kanako's statement. "How come I didn't know about this?!"
"Because you never asked." Kanako noted with a grin.
Haruka sighed as she took in another drag. "No Kanako, I did not forget that you too touched the stone."
"You knew too?!" Hina glared at Haruka.
"Then why did you choose not to reveal this information to my dear Onii-chan?" Kanako glared at Haruka.
"It isn't so much that I choose not to reveal this information to Keitaro." Haruka stated. "It's that I'm more interested in men than women."
Kanako frowned at Haruka's statement. "So you expect Onii-chan to just go along and be the lover of his grandma?" Kanako grinned as she thought of her precious Onii-chan. "When he could have someone like me to keep him warm for all Eternity? Someone closer to his generation?"
Haruka eyed Kanako dangerously. However, the rest of her facial expression remained unchanged. "I never said that we'd be 'lovers' Kanako. Of course if Keitaro doesn't mind…"
"Wait, wait, WAITTTTTTTTT!!!" Naru slammed her foot down and begun waving her arms frantically in front of her. "First of all, NO ONE is deciding anything at this point!" Naru angrily said between deep breaths. "First, you can't be telling Keitaro what he should, or shouldn't do."
"Naru…" Haruka began as she let out a whiff of smoke from her mouth. "No one here is making Keitaro do anything. We're just discussion what ifs right now."
"Well, um, I…" Keitaro stammered out before being interrupted.
Kanako butted in. "It isn't like Onii-chan has much of a choice. He can either live the rest of his life with me, or… try to be with one of you and watch as all you all age and die." Kanako crossed her arm grinning. She eyed each of the other girls who all gazed at their own feet as they knew that Kanako was speaking the truth. "Not exactly a life I'm sure anyone, much less Onii-chan, would enjoy."
"Hmph." Naru sounded as she remained unmoved by Kanako's words. "It's true that we mere mortals have a limited lifespan. But if there is one thing I do know, you can't dictate someone's emotions." Naru swiveled her head towards Keitaro and raised her hand pointing at him. "Even a buffoon like him has feelings. And feelings are not something that can be turned on or off by a simple switch."
"Eh.. Um…" Keitaro again stammered out as he tried to reply, an apparently futile attempt to speak for himself.
"And so you intend to spend the rest of your life with Keitaro in the hopes that whatever years you have left, would be the best he'll ever have?" Haruka replied back to Naru.
It was now Naru's turn to stammer something out as her face turned bright red. "Um, eh… no! I mean… that was not what I meant…"
Haruka placed a hand up to stop Naru. "Say no more. In fact, I agree with what you said."
Kanako eyed Haruka questioningly.
Haruka in turn, eyed Kanako back. "Whether he's immortal or not, he's also still human." Haruka turned to Keitaro. "Right? You're still trying to get into Toudai so that you can meet your promise girl correct?"
Keitaro mouth began opening and closing before finally letting out a firm answer. "YES!" He then felt suddenly unsure of himself at that point. "At least, that's what I intended to do and… I still plan to go to Toudai and…"
"Say no more." Haruka said as she stepped up to Keitaro. "What you do with your life is up to you. Who you want to love, who you want to marry, it will always remain your choice." Haruka then removed the cigarette from her mouth. "You just have to realize, you have a very long life ahead of you."
Keitaro's mouth remained open after Haruka's interruption. After a second of contemplation, Keitaro nodded and weakly replied to her statement. "Yeah."
"Um, Haruka…" Motoko tentatively spoke up. "Is this, really the end? Are you sure there is nothing you can do about this? Isn't there a way to reverse it?"
"I'm all ears." Haruka said as she tapped her chin. "While the idea of living forever might have sounded great when I was a kid, after a few generation of this, not exactly something I want to go through. Alone at least."
"Hmph." Kanako sounded next to her. Obviously, she herself had different ideas. 'If you want to die so badly Haruka. By all means, be my guest. But as long as I can live with my Onii-chan, I don't mind Eternity one bit."
"Anoo…" Shinobu quietly spoke up next to them. "Maybe… maybe we can go to Toudai and… find a way to reverse the effects of the stone?"
Haruka shook her head. "We could always try. But remember, what happened to us seemed to be magic."
"A really powerful one at that which made us into gods." Kanako grinned maliciously.
"I wouldn't go that far." Haruka crossed her arms. "But I will have to agree that it is some very powerful magic. I mean nothing I did even harmed me. Much less… made me one step closer to death. Living forever is one thing. But even denied an unnatural death?"
"And besides…" Hina intervened as she leaned down on her walking cane. "I tried that already. Besides trying to convince a skeptical bunch of fools, none of them had any ideas of how to begin. Much less, a way to reverse the process of my aged look."
Motoko looked to the side as she considered something. "Maybe, maybe our family has a scroll or two that could help."
Haruka raised an eyebrow to Motoko's statement. "Do you recall a scroll that could reverse it Motoko?"
Motoko lowered and shook her head. "Unfortunately, I do not recall coming across any scroll that dealt with magical runes or stones that gave immortality." Motoko than looked up at Haruka. "But it still remains a possibility that our family might have something about it."
"Wouldn't hurt I guess." Haruka sighed. "But my gut feeling tells me that this would even be foreign to the Aoyama family." Haruka tried to recall the events when she met that peddler. "I'm afraid the only one that might be able to reverse it, was the same girl that gave me the stone in the first place." After a short pause, she began to realize something about that peddler. "There was something really odd about that gypsy. She… somehow didn't feel right. Like she wasn't… human."
"Maybe she was a demon?" Motoko wondered out loud. "That is why she had access to such powerful magic?"
"Who knows?" Haruka shrugged her shoulders. "Who, or whatever she is, she's long gone now. Maybe she went back to whatever place she came from."
Hawaii - On the Rim of the Volcano
The winged gypsy girl looked at the stone in front of her. A stone that had mocked her for close to three hundred years. Being half-human and half-goddess can get very boring at times. So she dabbled in the forbidden arts. This particular stone was the accumulation of much experimentation into forbidden magic. It was also an astounding success for what it did. Which would also be her downfall as her experiments was exposed by others. Namely, a certain dark skinned goddess. And now, to prevent the wrath of Kami-sama from coming down on her, she vowed to destroy it, and all remnants of the experiments she had conducted.
"All the other stones were nothing compared to this one." Urd noted as she stared at the stone behind the winged gypsy girl. "Sure, they might grant a person at most invulnerability, or limited immortality, but not both at the same time. And certainly not as long lasting as this one."
"And it's also why this stone is nearly impossible to destroy." The winged gypsy girl said. "No matter what I tried, nothing could make a dent on it. Not even a scratch, much less a crack."
"Well, you better find a way." Urd smiled as she patted the girl on the back. "Because if you don't, you know what Kami-sama will do to you."
Images flashed across her as the horrible images came back to the winged girl. "AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! Anything but that!" The images of being tied up and forced to watch the Teletubbies, Barney, the Boobahs fused together in an epic show, ran repeatedly over and over again, could destroy even the strongest minds in the world. "Okay! I'll destroy it! I'll do it this time!"
"Good." Urd smiled as she flew away. "Remember to destroy it this time. Make sure there is no trace of it whatsoever."
"Okay!" The winged gypsy girl said as she waved back at Urd. After Urd left, the girl looked at the stone and cursed the Heavens. "SON OF A…"
"But I don't want Haruka, Keitaro, and strange girl in black to live forever!" Su whimpered.
Kanako eyed the young foreign girl. "But you're just have to face that fact." Kanako crossed her arms with a smug look. "We'll be alive and well, well after you are gone."
Su growled. "Not unless we get our hands on that stone."
"Well, if you can find her and get your hand on that stone, I suppose you can join us in living forever." Haruka said in a hypothetical tone.
"Of course, that requires finding her." Kanako cut in. "Hina and I already tried. And we found no trance of her existence."
Su began to smile. Though the smile took a devilish turn. "That's probably because you didn't have the resources that I have access too."
Kanako frowned at Su's seemingly cocky statement. "Oh? And pray tell what resources that you have access to? And before you say it, the Urashima family is not a poor family. This Inn should be your first indication of that."
Naru eyed Su in a slightly hopeful tone. She then eyed Kanako with a devious grin herself. "You don't know who Su is do you?"
"I do not." Kanako admitted. "But all I see is that she is a foreigner."
"Yup yup yup!" Su nodded as she began to do cartwheels around Kanako, which further irritated the Goth girl. "I'm not from this country!"
Kanako narrowed her eyes as her fingers began to dig into her biceps. "Could you get to the point?" 'She wouldn't have brought it up unless she's like royalty or something.'
"Anoo. Um, eh… uh…" Shinobu stumbled out. She was not sure if she would be the one to speak it, or Su. But Su… well, she was not sure if she was stalling to annoy Kanako, or if she was waiting for someone else to say it.
Kitsune, who at this point was simply concerned and fascinated about what the conversation was about, decided at that point to speak for Su. While she enjoyed watching this arrogant Goth girl suffer a bit, she also did felt this delay was a bit pointless. "Well…" Kitsune said with a huge smile. "This here little girl is a princess!"
"A what?" Kanako raised an eyebrow at the revelation.
"Yup!" Su jumped on Kanako's back and began distorting Kanako's face. "I'm the Princess of Molmol!"
"Get off!" Kanako growled as she instinctively jerked her arm back trying to knock Su off. Instead, Su just became even more bold and started pulling Kanako's hair. And she tried to punch the little girl off, Su grabbed her arm, dropped to the ground, and began twirling her around.
"Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!" Su happily exclaimed as she twirled Kanako around and around.
All the while, the other residents simply watched in amusement.
Finally, Kanako jerked her arm away and frowned. She was a bit dizzy from the twirling. "Stupid girl." She mumbled to herself. "So, she is a princess is she?" She then looked at Haruka and then to Hina. "What, you two knew?"
"Of course." Hina winkled face smiled. "I was the manager of this place. I have to know about everyone that comes to live here."
"And I'm only steps away from the Hinata Sou." Haruka said as her last cigarette appeared to be nearing it's end. She privately cursed not buying another pack earlier. "And when Hina is out, I was the defacto manager. So I needed and had access to the same information."
"And how come I don't know any of this?" Kanako shifted her eyes from Haruka and Hina as she said this.
"Because you never asked." Haruka and Hina said in unison.
Kitsune slapped Kanako on the back to add some insult to injury. "Wasn't like you cared about the residents of this place before right?"
"Peh." A furious shaking Kanako let out. She then took a deep breath, calming down, and then eyed the grinning little princess. "And what good will it do to you, even if you are a princess?"
"Well…" Su looked up in a mock thinking pose. "Daddy is the king of Molmol. He's also very well liked. A lot of people would love to see him rule forever… I don't know." Su's eyes seemed to twinkle at the last statement.
"In other words…" Motoko continued as Su was still in her playful mood. "If Su's parents find out about the stone, she could get the financial and technical support from the Molmol government."
"And in case you're thinking Molmol is some backwards nation…" Naru grinned as she eyed Kanako like pray that was ready to be pounced on. "You should check out her room here. Besides the fact that she somehow was able to fit a jungle in there, it's also full of pretty advance equipment. While I wouldn't say all her machines andexperiments were beneficial," Naru lightly shivered as she remembered some of the apparent failures Su's machine did. Not to mention the ones that no one would call safe. "At the same time, they were, almost a head of their time if I may say so yourself."
Kanako glared at Naru for a moment before sighing in defeat. "Very well. She can try to succeed where we failed. But no matter how much resources you throw at this, if she went back to wherever she came from, it's doubtful that even you can find her."
"Maybeeeeeeeeeeeee." Su looked up into the ceiling. "But I have a feeling this girl is somewhere that we can easily find!"
Hawaii - On the Rim of the Volcano
"So until I destroy this stone, I'm stuck in the mortal realm." The winged gypsy girl crossed her arms and frowned. "Well, I have all Eternity to find a way to destroy it. And besides, no one knows who I am or what I look like so, I guess I shouldn't really be bothered by anyone."
A sudden shiver ran down her spine. Followed by a light sneeze.
"Huh?" The girl said confused by the sensation. "Wonder what that was about? Bah. I should go to a place that's more secluded." She contemplated about the places where she could go. "Hmm. Or at least a place where I can do my research without being bothered. Maybe instead of going into isolated deserted region of the world where some fool might stumble in my way… how about go the opposite route? Some place that's full of people that are going about in their daily lives? Some place like, Japan."
A grin appeared on the winged girl's face.
"Yes. That's it! Sure it has over a hundred million people. But no one would be looking for me. Besides, I'll be a foreigner." The smile on her face got bigger as she thought up all the possibilities with this location. "No one there would want to be friends with a foreigner. Oh, this is going to be perfect! Nothing can possibly go wrong now!"
"Maybe I'll talk to the Aoyama Elders." Motoko contemplated out loud. "Maybe they would be interested in this matter as well."
"You have to be careful." Haruka spoke up as it was becoming clear that this revelation was definitely going to change things here. "Life and death is not something that should be dealt with easily. Even if we get our hands on this stone, what do you plan to do with it? It's bad enough I have to live forever. Imagine if millions of people are granted that gift or curse? And what about the millions that didn't get to the stone in time? It's a potential disaster no matter which side you're on."
"Er…" Motoko frowned at that. "I… that's right. We should think about what we would do if we get the stone. Still, I think the Aoyama Elders would have some wisdom about this."
"Or their self-preservationist mind might override their logical one. So they decide that only old farts like them deserve it and no one else." Kanako cynically added.
Motoko glared menacingly at Kanako.
"Whatever." Naru waved her hands as if she was trying to steer the current topic away from it's current path. "What we do with the stone is irrelevant now until we have the stone in my hand."
"Your hand?" Kanako frown deepened. She knew she would not like this girl when she first saw her. And each word that she puked out only made her harden that belief.
"Um, I mean, our hands." Naru corrected. She then cleared her throat before she continued. "It's important that we get this stone as soon as possible!"
"Why is it so important?" Kitsune asked. While a part of her would enjoy living forever, another part of her was not so sure that was a good idea. And she was not sure why Naru herself would be so eager to have an eternal life. Unless she finally admitted her feelings for Keitaro were genuine.
"Uh! Um…" Naru shifted her eyes from side to side. She was suddenly at a loss for words. She eyed Haruka and then Motoko hoping they would speak up. When they did not, she then focused on Keitaro. After staring at Keitaro for a few seconds too long, she suddenly blushed, gritted her teeth, and stared down on the floor. "It's cause I… we… need a choice in this matter."
"And like I said before, immortality is not something that should be taken lightly." Haruka said as she began tapping her fingers. "Especially since all it took was one touch. One touch and it made us immortal. And once you touch it, unless this gypsy has a stone to reverse it, it's also permanent."
"All I want is to look young again." Hina said as she placed a hand on her cheek, and started to imagine all of the 'naughty' things she could be doing in a much younger body. "I don't necessarily want to be immortal. But if I have to, I'm sure I can find plenty of stuff to do." Hina began drooling.
Kitsune's face began to sour at seeing Hina's expression. Whatever she was thinking, it probably was not fit for children. Which was made even worst given the current appearance of Hina as a 'grandmother'. "I think I'm going to be sick."
"Uh huh!" Su said as she did cartwheels out of the room. She apparently either ignored, or simply not cared about Haruka's concern. "I'll talk to daddy! And if he says yes, I'll begin planning right now." An evil smile appeared on her face. "That peddler and that stone will be mine!"
"And I'll call my sister." Motoko said as she turned towards where the Hinata Sou's main phone was located. "I'll give everyone her answer when I'm done."
"Hmph." Kanako sounded after watching the two residents leave the room. "Suits themselves. But they are simply wasting their time. Even if they find her, it's doubtful that she would have any of the stones on her."
"She'd better." Hina said with contempt. "Because even if she herself can't die, I'm going to make sure that she wished she had a stone to release her from her physical existence."
"Well, I'd like to get my hands on her myself." Haruka noted as she glanced at the doorway. "I want to know exactly what she is, and how she could come across such a powerful stone."
"Ah." Keitaro's eyes suddenly lit up. He viewed Hina as she was about to leave towards the stairs. Probably up to the empty room now that Keitaro resides in the manager's room. "That reminds me, whatever happened to that other stone? The aging one."
"Oh that horrid thing?" Hina spat out. "When I realized what that stone did to me, I threw it on the ground and it shattered into a million pieces. Whatever magic it held seemed to have dissipated since when my uncle, your father picked up the pieces, nothing happened to him."
"The other stone was different though." Haruka recalled. "When I accidentally dropped it, nothing happened. As ugly as I thought it was, there was no indication of a scratch, a chip, anything. When I tried to use a hammer, the only thing that was damaged in the end was the hammer. That's why I decided to throw it down the volcano."
"Grrrr." Hina let out.
"Hmm." The wheels in Naru's head began to turn. "I'm going to talk to Su. Maybe there is something I can do."
"Bah." Kitsune said as she waved at the others. It was clear this meeting was over. "All this talk about immortality and what not, has made me thirsty. Well, as I always say, life is short! For um, most of us. Better enjoy it while we can!" She walked out the door to, most likely to a local bar to get wasted for the night.
"And I'll reside in that spare room for now." Hina said as she hobbled her way up the stairs. "Since I gave the reigns to you Keitaro."
"But you don't have to do all that. I mean…" Keitaro scratched the back of his head.
"My decision is final." Hina smiled back at Keitaro. "You're the manager and future owner now. That room is yours. Now? I'm just a simple young guest. A very tired one at that. So if you don't mind…" Hina continued her slow and steady walk up the stairs.
"Anoo…" Shinobu, who did not have much to say during the conversation, found herself alone with the immortals. Thinking that, at the moment she was out of place, she decided to remove herself from this room as well. "I'll go clean the kitchen, bathroom, hallway, do the laundry…"
Kanako glared at Shinobu.
"I'll do it now!" Shinobu quickly said and sprinted out of the room. However, on her way to doing the chores, she could not help but daydream about the possibilities. The possibility of being with Keitaro… forever.
"Oh Senpei!" Shinobu said as they boarded a spaceship. "Will you love me forever?"
"For all Eternity my love!" A handsome and ripped Kietaro said in a deep voice. "And since we're the only immortals left, it really is an Eternity."
The spaceship door closed, and began took off. Speeding past Jupiter and Saturn. Give that this is a fantasy, it was completely ignoring the laws physics.
"Oh Senpei!" Shinobu embraced Keitaro lovingly. "I love you, from here to Eternity!"
Reality - Hinata Sou
Keitaro watched as the room emptied, with the exception of Haruka and Kanako. As the three no longer mortals remained, Keitaro asked the only thing that was on his mind. "So what do we do now?"
"Beats me." Haruka said shrugging. "Su and Motoko are off doing their thing. I guess in the meantime we could go grab something to eat."
"We can still eat?" Keitaro said pensively. "I mean, it isn't like we will starve… will we?"
"True." Haruka replied. "Heck, after a while, our bodies stop feelinghungry if you don't eat for a while." Haruka said as she remembered the self experiment she did when she first discovered her ability. While at first her body protested the lack of the now unneeded nourishment, after even a relatively short seven or eight hours, the hunger pains disappeared. Same was true for the lack of liquids. After over a day without drinking any liquids of any kind, her body simply said 'forget it' altogether. She was not sure if in the long run this would result in her drying out, but given how after two weeks without drinking had not caused any significant physical changes, she doubted there would be any differences. Seemed her own body was more used to this immortality thing than her mind was. "That doesn't mean we can't eat or drink though. Our organs still function perfectly after all. It'll still digest the food even if that is now unnecessary."
"Besides," Kanako cut in as she approached Keitaro. "You still like to indulge on eating delicious delicacies don't you?" Kanako gave a wry smile. "After all, nothing wrong with having some Kobe Beef every once in a while right?" Kanako began soothing Keitaro's back.
"I guess not." Keitaro said as his stomach rumbled a bit. "Some Kobe Beef actually sounds good right now."
"Good." Kanako locked arms with his. "I know just the restaurant where we can go." 'And then, we'll get to know each other a bit better. Onii-chan!'
"Hmph." Haruka followed Kanako and Keitaro. 'Trying to get your claws on him already huh?' "Don't forget me. It was I that suggested it after all. And the one that actually has the cash to pay for all this."
"Yes grandmother." Kanako frowned at the older woman's intrusion into her plans. "Of course we're all coming." Kanako mentally growled at the older woman. 'No matter. Keitaro will be mine… forever!'
Naru wandered into Su's room. She brushed aside some leaves as she tried to find the path that would lead her to Su. After all, Su's room was literally a jungle. She looked around the dense forest in the hopes of finding her. She was also mindful of Su's numerous machines and traps that were everywhere. She might be ten or eleven (at least, before a Red Moon comes around), but she was also quite protective of her things. Even if her methods involves traps that were borderline legal. If not outright law breaking.
Naru suddenly stopped and huffed. Knowing her history with this place, there was a better solution to finding Su than overtly risking her life. She huffed and stomped her foot, hoping that she did not accidentally set off one of Su's traps. "Su! Where are you?!"
Said girl swung down next to Naru from the branches, inches from her face. "Heyo!"
"GACK!" Naru jumped back and landed on the ground. "What, what are you doing up there?"
"Just talking to my family!" The young princess said as she dangled upside down from one of the branches.
"And what did they say?" Naru said as she slowly got up. She was curious about what Su and her family had to say.
"Daddy said he's going to be very happy to get his hand on this stone." Su happily replied. "But have to keep it a secret! Don't want to give Molmol any hope that their king will rule them forever."
Naru's smile began to fade a bit. After a bit of thought, the idea of having a 'leader for life' did not sit well with her. Even if it was someone that was as benevolent as Su's father. At least, someone she assumed to be as benevolent since she has yet to even meet him. Still, if this meant getting the stone, it should all work out in the end.
"Hmm. Sounds good I guess." Naru said as she crossed her arms. "But what are they going to do about it?"
"Well, he first thought of sending over the entire Molmol Military here to Japan…" Su began in a thoughtful manner. "After all, we're not at war with anyone!"
"GAH!" Naru's eyes nearly burst out of her eye sockets when she heard that. "How, how is that supposed to keep things secret?!"
"Well, he then decided that only my sister should come." Su beamed as she ripped out a banana from a bundle and began peeling it.
"Wait, you have a sister?" Naru blinked in surprise. This was the first time she has ever heard of Su having a family besides the fact that she had a father, and a mother. Heck, she did not even know that she was royalty until very recently too. 'This day seemed to be full of surprises,' Naru thought as she recalled the other, less pleasant surprise of the day. 'Heck, I didn't even know Keitaro even had a creepy sister.' She frowned deeply at not knowing this information. She thought she was getting closer to Keitaro before and in turn, knowing all the little details about him. Not to the extent of actually liking him in that way an all she kept telling herself, but still, closer. The recent bombshells however, have put that reasoning in doubt.
Su nodded as she began to eat her banana happily. "Yup! And she should be here tomorrow!"
'Not wasting time I see.' Naru thought at the suddenness of it all. She then coughed a bit as she wanted to shift the subject away from the pending royal arrival. "So, do you have any idea how to find this, Gypsy Girl?"
Su's cheerfulness seemed to have lessened after hearing Naru's question. However, she did try to keep a reasonably cheery mood about the situation. "Nope! No clue!"
"Hmph." Naru sounded as she had suspected as much. Finding Keitaro or Motoko when they left was one thing, trying to find a girl that only Haruka, and maybe Hina had seen was entirely different beast to take down. Which brought Naru to her own suggestion. "Say Su, what if, instead of trying to find the girl, you try to find the stone instead?"
Su back flipped off the branch and landed on the ground next to Naru. "Ooooooooo. Idea forming! But why find the stone instead of the Gipsee?"
"Well…" Naru raised a knowing hand as she recalled Haruka's and Hina's words. "Hina said that the aging stone was easily destroyed when she threw it on the ground. But no matter what Haruka did, the Immortal one refused to be damaged." A smile appeared on Naru's face. "So my guess is, that stone is still around somewhere. Whether that girl has it or not doesn't matter."
Su dropped her right fist into her left hand. "And if Haruka, Keitaro, and the strange dark girl all have traceable paranormal readings, I can build a machine that could lead back to the source!"
"Uh, yeah." Naru tentatively replied. For someone that appeared to be no older than eleven, Su did seem to have a more educated reasoning and understanding of what to do. Most kids her age were probably watching Pokemon or Yu-Gi-Oh. Not thinking up of building complicated machines like she was proposing. "Anyways, you should start building soon. Because once that machine is build, the stone will be mine… I mean, ours."
Su raised her fist in the air. "Right-o!"
Hinata Sou - Main Room
"Hey! Where did you guys go?" Naru huffed haughtily at the three people that were walking through the door.
Keitaro drooped his head down as he entered through the doorway. "We just went out for a bite to eat."
"And it was certainly much fulfilling and satisfying wasn't it Onii-chan?" Kanako cooled at Keitaro's ear. All the while having her right arm locked with Keitaro's.
Naru growled at the scene she was seeing in front of her. Though she would never admit the reason why seeing this bothered her.
"Anooo…" Shinobu dropped her head in disappointment. "I already prepared a special dinner for tonight."
"Don't worry." Haruka said behind the ronin and the Goth girl. "Keitaro is going to eat Shinobu's food too right?"
"Eh?!" Keitaro gasped out. He was, after all, for intent and purpose, stuffed. He thought fancy restaurants were all overpriced with puny portions. This place only followed the overpriced part. He then peered into Shinobu's innocent eyes, and instantly melted in them. He just could not deny the little girl anything. "Of course. I'll eat plenty of Shinobu's food!"
"There see?" Haruka nonchalantly said as she continued to follow Keitaro and Kanako into the room. "Oh, and I also made sure they were on their best behavior while they were away."
"Hmph." Naru sounded, highly annoyed by this. "And why exactly is his shirt all stained?"
"Onii-chan tripped on the serving lady." Kanako scowled at the memories. "I'm sure it was that woman's fault after all."
"Not to mention destroyed a lot of the expensive dishes." Haruka added, causing Kanako to frown even more. "Luckily, the Urashima Family as a whole has been quite successful financially and so we were able to replace them without much fuss."
"It is?" Naru asked as she was not sure she bought that. She looked around the Hinata Sou which was, for the most part, in a fairly shabby condition.
"As a whole." Huraka reiterated. "This amount of land alone would be the envy of most of Japan save the Empress herself. Though it isn't like everything goes into this Inn. And there is a belief in our family that people should work to earn their living." She then eyed Hina who was standing next to her smiling. "There are exceptions of course."
"Oh would you hush!" Hina glared back at Haruka. "It isn't like I can easily get a job when I look like this!"
"She's right." Motoko cut in. She was sitting on the couch next to the table at the center of the room. "This nation, doesn't look fondly on older people. At least, as a working citizen."
"Yeah. There is an expectation that the elderly are supposed to be taken care of. At my age, I should be retired and living on the state's pension." Haruka mused. "At least, if I looked like my granddaughter here."
Hina glared at Haruka after she made that snide remark.
"Anyways," Haruka sat down next to Motoko. She took out a cigarette that she bought on the way back to the Hinata Sou, and lit it. "What has everyone decided?"
"My sister thought I was playing a joke on her when I told her about your immortality." Motoko said as she relayed the conversation that she had. "When I told her that I was being completely serious, she said that she would personally look into the matter. If it warranted, she might come up here personally to see if this is demonic in origin."
"Hmm." Haruka took a puff and then blew out a whiff of smoke. "Well, I guess that's what the Aoyama's are going to do about this." She then looked at Su. "And what about the Molmol's?"
"My sister is coming tomorrow to help hunt for the stone." Su said nodding. "Papa is going to be really happy if he got his hand on the stone. However, he won't announce it publicly until he has it in his possession. After all, he doesn't want to give the people any unnecessarily hope that their beloved king will be around for all eternity."
'Or depose him before that happened.' Haruka thought darkly before she spoke on the matter. "Well, it seems that our plans are in motion in finding this girl."
"Eh hem." Naru coughed into her first. "Actually, we are actually trying to find the stone directly instead of looking for this gypsy girl."
"Huh?" Haruka raised an eyebrow.
"You said it yourself right? You couldn't destroy the stone?" Naru explained. "And this gypsy girl could be anywhere. For all we know, she's not even on this planet." Naru then placed her hands on her hips and straightened up her back. "And since we can now take the idea that immortality is a fact, let's assume that she's some sort of, demon, goddess, or alien from a different realm that was simply passing by."
"Ah." Motoko finally catching on to what Naru was saying. "So, why try to find the girl who may not be here, and instead find the stone that is still here."
"And even if this girl is still here…" Su said bouncing around, and landed straight on Keitaro's back. Causing said man to gasp and panic. "And she has the stone… find the stone, you find her in that case right?"
"But what about me?" Hina complained. "Immortality is one thing. But look at me? What good would it do me if I had the stone?"
"Hmm. You have to look at the differences in power between the two stones." Su answered as she began jotting down on a blackboard. "If one stone was weak enough that simply throwing it down on the ground would cause it to shatter. Maybe, if you touch the Immortality stone…"
Hina's smile began to widen as she cut in. "Then it's possible that the other stone's effects would be nullified."
"Well, it's only a theory." Su reminded Hina.
"Doesn't matter." Hina eagerly smiled as she slammed her fist into her other hand. "Even if it only granted me immortality, I would have all eternity to making myself young and beautiful!"
"…right." Naru said at Hina's wishful thinking. "Anyways, so it's settled right? We get the stone, and everyone here would be happy about that right?"
"Well…" Kitsune lazily said as she sat back on the couch.
"Well?" Naru repeated. Unsure if she liked the tone of Kitsune's answer.
"I'm not sure if I would like this whole, living forever thing." Kitsune sighed as she picked up a magazine. "I mean sure, I'll always be my sexy self well into the future. But… what's going to happen when the novelty wears off? After all, what am I, or you, or everyone else here going to do fifty years from now, a hundred, a thousand?"
"Umm… ehh…" Naru was unsure how to answer her. "Well, you have all Eternity to decide what to do… ish."
"Heh. Like what I'm doing now?" Kitsune said as she circled a few horses in the sports magazine in her hand. "There is a reason why I'm thankful that I live at the Hinata Sou right now. And while it's all fun an games at, I guess you call the prime of my life…" Kitsune winked back at Naru. "It's doubtful I would, or even could do this forever."
"Eh…" Naru sounded as she could not see any fault in Kitsune's reasoning. So, she then turned to another resident and asked for her thought. "Um, Shinobu?"
"Anoo…" Shinobu glanced at Keitaro and blushed a bit. "While I wouldn't mind living forever with… sempai…" Her blush deepened after she said his name, well, title that she gave him. "But, my friends and family…"
Naru lowered her head defeated. Even she had serious doubts now about getting the stone for her own selfish reasons. However, as she looked at the idiot that had no choice, was it really her own selfish reasons for wanting it? She began to tell herself there is another reason. "And that's why we need the stone!"
Kanako frowned. She thought the conversation was helping destroy Naru's zeal in getting the stone, and in turn, eliminate any competition to her dream of living with Onii-chan, forever and for always. Alone even. However, Naru appeared renewed in her efforts to acquire it. "And if it isn't living forever… Narusegawa was it? Then for what reason would you want it?"
"To prevent other people from getting it of course." Naru grinned. "I mean, imagine the turmoil the world would be thrown into if some guy found the stone, and then it was splashed all over CNN or BBC."
Haruka contemplated Naru's change of direction. "They wouldn't know it at first. But once they discover that stone's power…"
"And worse…" Motoko grimaced as a disturbing thought entered her mind. "What if, the person that picked it up was some crazed vile disgusting madman bent on ruling the world?"
Keitaro grimaced as Motoko seemed to have fallen back into her man hating ways. Maybe. However, even he would concede that Motoko had a point. This stone, if in the wrong hands, could be very bad for the world.
"He could become quite powerful. Especially if he can literally not die." Haruka noted.
"That's more reason for papa to get it!" Su raised her fist into the air. "We have to make sure that doesn't happen!"
"Right!" Naru said. Even if she no longer believed that Su's father should be the 'one' to get it. "So we have to find this stone at all cost!"
Su nodded. "And I believe I know how." Su scampered just outside the room and revealed what appeared to be a chair, with an old hair stylish machine on top, with miscellaneous wires running to and from what appeared to be a computer readout display.
"Eh?" Kietaro, Motoko, and Kitsune all stared at the machine.
"What the heck is that?" Kitsune said in disbelief as she stared at the strange contraption.
"The magic that keeps Haruka, Kietaro, and that strange girl in black in their body must be giving off something." Su surmised as she plugged the machine into a wall outlet. "Some sort of paranormal energy discharge. This machine should be able to detect exactly what that energy is."
Naru then grabbed Keitaro's hand and quickly led him to the chair. It also forced Kanako to let go of Keitaro. "The sooner we get a reading, the faster Su can build that Immortality Stone Seeking Machine!"
"WAA?!" Keitaro cried out as he was quickly strapped into the machine. "Is this even safe?"
"What?" Naru devilishly smiled. "It isn't like you're going to die now."
Kanako glared angrily at the scene in front of her. Her dreams were being shattered by a bunch of fools. 'I cannot allow them to get the stone!'
The Winged Gypsy Girl had her long dove like wings spread out. Flapping every so often to make sure she maintained lift. It was a sunny day, with only the clear blue sky above her, and the clean crisp aqua sea below her, with the sunlight shimmering on its surface. As she watched the edges of the land appear over the horizon in front of her, she could not help but smile. "Japan! Here I come!"
-------End of Chapter 2
This is the end of Chapter 2. Long awaited like a LOT of my fics.
So in the meantime, I'm dedicating myself to finishing those updates. This just so happened to be the first. What's next on the agenda? Well, fics that haven't been updated in over year probably. Though yes, Fallen Blade (which hasn't hit it's 2nd year anniversary yet) is on that list as well.
Next… The search begins! Amalla comes to the Hinata Sou as well as Tsuruko. Will they be able to get the stone? And what about the other girl? Ara Ara! Until then, later!