Disclaimer: I do not own Saiyuki or anything else that anybody in the known universe could sue me for. I own nothing.
AN: Hi. If you clicked on the little link to my story, thanks. If you read the chapter and want more, thanks again ten-fold. This is the introduction, I hope to actually introduce the succubi next chapter. And more so I hope that they're interesting, complex characters and not mary-sues. But hey, they're succubi they're supposed to be perfect and strong and all the other cool vamp things. Plus they get to make out with the Sanzo party, so I think Mary-Sue is an inevitable. So hopefully they'll be the good kind. Better yet they won't be Mary Sue at all. In any case, time for the author to stop ranting. Enjoy!
The air was cold. Something about mountain mist always made the air freeze. Naturally the stupid monkey was complaining about it. As was the stupid kappa. Freaking prima donnas. Sanzo just closed his eyes and tried to block out the sounds of argument coming from the backseat. He had a headache, it was one of those magic headaches that idiots would never fail to give him. You'd think they'd find some better way of entertaining themselves.
Yet, wasn't that the nature of idiots? To annoy all those around them with an IQ above negative 2?
The anger reached its boiling point; Sanzo released a shot from his banishing gun into the air, then rose to his feet, "For the love-"
"Sanzo," Hakkai said softly from his position in the drivers seat.
"Shut up, I'm talking!" Turning his attention back to the now cowering fools in the backseat he got ready to let loose a string of death threats and insults, not to mention words that priests ought not say.
Naturally, that was the exact moment Hakkai decided to stop the stupid car.
Sanzo was thrown forward, or backward however you decided to look at it. The backs of his legs bent against the jeep's windshield, and his back slapped down with incredible force against the hood of the car. Hard enough to have the wind knocked out of him. His sight spun with sunspots and his headache increased from "idiot" headache to the "I am an idiot" headache.
"Hakkai…" Sanzo said, trying to keep his composure. Not because he was being polite. Simply because he didn't want to aggravate any possible injuries. "Why did you stop when I was standing up in the freaking car!"
The thing where he tried to keep his composure had never worked well for him. Despite his injuries he sat up.
He automatically sensed it, the way they were all staring in front of them. Sanzo didn't even wait for Hakkai to say "We have company" Before the blond monk had his gun drawn, and pointed expertly down the road. He was always up for a nice demon thrashing. However, there was the little issue of being thrown against the hood of the car. He swung his legs around so he could use his knee to steady his shot.
They weren't demons.
They were regular men, in long dark robes, and crossbows in hand. Sanzo took in every detail from their weapons to their unshaved stubble. They had quivers on their backs, appropriately sewn into their cloaks for easy access when they needed another bolt for their weapons. As for the weapons themselves, they were crudely made. Not to say they wouldn't kill him from this distance. They just weren't likely to hit him. There was always the chance they compensated for aim by poisoning the bolts. So getting hit would be a bad idea. Then there was that look in their eyes, not bloodthirsty bandits, something else. Something worse.
Fanatics. They were fanatics. Men who believed they were doing the right thing. No matter how evil the cause, how dirty the deed.
Sanzo pulled back the hammer on his weapon. Not like any of that mattered. They were in his way, that's all he needed to know.
"Go back!" Goon number one said.
Sanzo replied, "And what if we don't?"
Goon number one twitched a finger; suddenly the other six raised their crossbows. Not to mention the fifty or sixty more weapons Sanzo could just feel trained on them from the surrounding forest. "I'm sorry to hear that. Because we need to get through, and you're in my way."
"We cannot let you pass."
Sanzo was about to come back with something widely undiplomatic when he heard Hakkai whisper something in his ear, "Sanzo…we can't fight them all, but we might be able to break through their wall."
"Can you raise a shield if I drive?" Gojyo spoke this time. Gods knew they wouldn't tempt fate by putting Sanzo behind the wheel. Goku…well that would have just been plain suicide.
Hakkai nodded, "Possibly…but it'll look suspicious if we switch places."
Sanzo decided that the best he could do was to keep the old man talking, see if he could get more information. Hell, for all he knew they were busting through the guards into the prison walls. They might let something out, or worse, find themselves in the middle of some uber-demon feeding frenzy. "Why can't we pass?"
"You cannot pass!" The man yelled again.
Great. Sanzo thought. A goddamn broken record.
In his experience you just didn't get much info out of a drone set on "loop". His banishing gun wouldn't turn them to dust, but it was at least a .45 in regular gun terms, it'd kill them all good and proper.
"Wait…" Goku said, "Those guys…they're human."
Sanzo only stared at the monkey demon, "So? Are humans less capable of evil than demons? You're a dumbass I know, but you should know at least that in our time on this little venture."
"I know Sanzo, but-"
"No buts! You gonna fight or aren't you?"
Goku didn't have time to argue, otherwise Sanzo knew he would have. A bolt flew by, narrowly missing him. Sanzo had to rethink about that weapon's aim.
"Demons!" Top-goon yelled.
Crap…having demons as his companions didn't really make him that many friends. Looked like they were in for a fight with humans.
Hakkai managed to get a shield up before the next barrage of bolts came their way. They shattered against the wall of royal blue chi. Damn. There were a lot more than he'd originally thought. And they could hide themselves just as well as any demon. Perhaps even a little better.
That was when the infantry came in, the foot soldiers. Swarms of men in dark clothes came from the forests, appearing from the mists like wraiths. Long, strange sabers in their hands. Sanzo, couldn't think he'd ever seen any weapons like that. Glowing with a dark, purple aura. They were enchanted, by dark magic. Which could only mean-
"Hakkai! Drop the shield and shoot the foot soldiers!"
"We'll be turned into pincushions!"
"Trust me, damn it!"
Hakkai dropped the shield and blew away a goon coming at him from the front. The man fell back from the force of the chi blast, and he took three more with him. But even at that they couldn't even dent the assault. Gojyo was already swinging his weapon around whip-like in an attempt to keep a barrier around them. That didn't stop the soldiers, or mercenaries, or cultists or whatever they were from throwing themselves into the chained blade.
"Are these folks insane?" Gojyo yelled, "They'll be torn to shreds. And you could help you know!"
Sanzo didn't pay them any attention, he had a plan.
Another rain of bolts shot through the forests towards them.
That wasn't part of said plan.
"Hakkai put the barrier back up!" That in and of itself was a risk, if those weapons could do what he thought they could, but they were lacking in the choice department. The sounds of bolts sinking into the flesh of the infantry were all around them. Arrows shot from the goon marksmen slaughtered the majority of their own swordsmen. Even through the barrier, Sanzo could smell the blood. The bile. The death.
The death of a master to save his apprentice.
The priest forced himself to shake the whisper of a thought from his mind. This was an inopportune time to get his old familiar haunts.
As soon as it had come, the whisper was gone, a gentle gust of freezing air on a summers day. Nothing more, nothing less. "Hakkai! Take off!" These humans were more trouble than he wanted to handle, besides, that would be really anticlimactic if they were taken out by a bunch of fanatic demon-hunters.
They had maybe a split second of an opening: maybe. As soon as they had to stop firing to reload, Hakkai dropped his shield and put Hakkuryu into gear. The jeep shot off in a cloud of gravel and dust, appropriately kicked off into the faces of those trying to kill them. It was only when the jeep started to move that Sanzo remembered he was still on the hood. To keep from sliding off, he steadied himself with his left hand on the windshield. Hakkuryu shot into the cluster of swordsmen surrounding them. Hakkai slammed into the wall, and they bounced off the car like flies on a windshield. Plus the sound of shattering bones and breaking bodies. It was like driving into a pit of blades. Sanzo let loose a constant barrage of gunfire into the crowd. When he had to reload, Hakkai was forced to compensate with a quick burst of chi blasts. Sanzo could hear the sounds of Goku and Gojyo whacking away trouble from their six. One managed to get through and drive his sword deep into the jeep. A metallic wail came from somewhere inside the hunk of metal.
This was where it got tricky, if the marksmen managed to reload before Hakkai could get them out of the swarm of swordsmen they were thoroughly screwed. Because Hakkai's shields would be useless after the enchanted blades sliced right through them. Sanzo knew they'd either be sliced up into tiny pieces or skewered with bolts or both.
One of the goons managed to get a hold on Sanzo's leg, it was the icy cold grip of a desperate man. Knowing this man would journey to hell to complete his quest, Sanzo just wasn't quite ready to go with him. He aimed and shot the man point blank, the bullet tearing a deep, ugly hole right between his insane eyes. The fanatic slipped off into the growing river of bodies.
As luck would have it, the jeep managed to break through the seven archers that had stopped them to begin with took aim. Sanzo acknowledged with his own weapon.
"I'm on it!"
The monkey demon was a blur, shooting past Sanzo and landing in front of the marksmen. He blew them to the side with a single swipe of his crimson red staff. Naturally it wasn't over. The maybe hundreds of more marksmen in the woods let them have it. Sanzo saw Hakkai try to stop and raise a shield. He slapped his empty gun hard against the hood of the jeep. "Keep driving! Gojyo, take care of it!"
The half-breed mumbled something about making him do all the work then turned his bladed chain into a virtual shield against the bolts. As they passed him, Sanzo reached out a hand to Goku and swung him up onto the hood of the jeep beside him.
Fortunately, the chain stopped most all the bolts, and the few that got through were nowhere near where it counted.
Sighs of relief came from everyone in the jeep. Demons they could handle. But those humans had been…crazed. As enraged as any demon. Hakkai drove for maybe another fifteen minutes before he stopped the car and sagged against the steering wheel. "Dear god, Sanzo. What the hell were you thinking?" Hakkai didn't sound angry, just thoroughly exhausted.
"Yeah, I'd like to know myself!" Gojyo said exasperated, "But more importantly I'd like to know what was up with those people. They were freakin' nuts!"
"'They were freakin' nuts' gee, I hope someday I'll inherit your talent for coming up with such miraculous theories. As for what I was thinking…" Sanzo ran a hand through his blond hair, "We couldn't count on your shields, Hakkai. If those swords were what I think they are…wouldn't have done any good. They woulda sliced right through 'em."
"How do ya know that?" Goku asked.
"Because they have similar enchantments to that of my banishing gun. They were filled with hate for demons. You're a demon; your energy comes from you."
Hakkai nodded, catching on. Sanzo knew that if he didn't have somebody on ship that could follow his train of thought he'd go insane. "So…I would only have blocked the bolts. We still would have gotten turned into mince meat."
"So…" Goku begain after a long silence, "What'd they want?"
Gojyo spared them of the stupid reply, "Us dead."
Sanzo sighed, rubbing his temple, during the course of the tussle, his headache had gotten even worse. "Whatever. Not our problem, we just need to get out of here as soon as possible."
"Amen to that." The sprawled out Gojyo said from somewhere in the back seat.
Hakkai raised a hand, "Um…Sanzo."
"What is it?"
"If we're going to leave, could you and Goku please climb off the hood?"
Sanzo did as asked; he couldn't wait to get off this shit mountain. Reaching into his sleeve he pulled out his carton of cigarettes. He flipped one out and lit it. Taking a long, deep breath of sickening smoke. Filling his lungs with tar may not have been the best way to relax, but what the hell.
The monk then considered what had happened as Hakkai healed Hakkuryu. There were a lot of those people, and a lot to spare. Judging from their appearance, they'd been camping out in the woods for a long time. Sanzo couldn't get over the fact that a whole shit-load of humans had almost overwhelmed them. If they could give the legendary Sanzo party a run for their money, what horrible creatures did Sanzo have to look foreword too? Sanzo guessed those people didn't seek out demons. If some came their way they'd slay them but for the most part Sanzo assumed their main point was to keep something in.
He let loose a gray cloud of smoke into the frosty air. This day just kept getting better, and better, and better…
AN: Hi, sorry. No vamps yet. Trust me, it gets better. For now I just have a couple of questions for anyone reviewing. Did I keep everyone in character? And what could I improve upon? Thank you for reading. Hope to see ya'll again for the next chapter. Which by the way will be up either today or tomorrow, so keep lookout.