AUTHOR'S NOTE: Okay... this is fondly dedicated to a small group of people who were evil and bribed my writing muse (damn you, Bob) into insisting on this story. Most noteably, Greyliliy, who has evil mind waves that make you do things... like write Hazel. Secondly, it's for Redbrunja who has been an absolute pleasure to talk with and says correctly that there really isn't enough het stuff in the Saiyuki fandom. Not that I don't love me a good, angsty Hakkai/Sanzo slash piece, but... she's got a point. And anyone who knows me or has read my stuff knows I do loooove to do something different. Thirdly, to Odin's Dragon Daughter because this is her fave pairing.

This is only a mini fic, basically two one shots wrapped into one story. The first part is Dokugakuji's thoughts the morning after they hook up, and the second is Yaone's with a bit of a conclusion for them. This is NOT going to be continued, though I might revisit these two cuties a little later. That's all! -curtsies-

Warm sunlight smacking him in the face was what made him suck down a deep, sleepy breath. Dokugakuji kicked himself mentally for not shutting the curtains over the windows of his room, except... he didn't have curtains in his room. Nor did he have an unbelievably soft down comforter on his bed. And his room most definately didn't smell like a combination of vanilla, fresh herbs and just a hint of gunpowder. It wasn't a bad smell by any means. Kind of smokey and exotic, but not familiar to him. All of these things, combined with the very feminine sigh that came from next to him and a slender curving around his bare stomach, told him he was most definately not in his room.

Dokugakuji didn't want to open his eyes quite yet. Opening them would mean he was fully awake, which then meant he should be reporting for duty. Besides, whoever's bed he was in was extremely comfortable. The owner of the bed was more so, he decided as a smooth thigh moved over his hip to bring his bed partner closer to him. Her movements shifted the blankets enough to let a small peep of cold morning air into their little nest. She shivered against him, and he fixed the problem before adjusting his position just slightly so that he now had soft breasts to his chest as well. Naturally, his change of position was only to warm her better. Of course it was. He was such a gentleman.

His mind was a blank for her name, and he did feel a little ashamed of that. Normally he didn't forget anything as important as a bed partner's name, but with all that had happened... He could always blame it on being dead tired. Every muscle in his body felt sore, and he was almost a hundred percent certain it wasn't all from extensive use in battle. This was the kind of sore that fel good. Simple, boneless relaxation, and unwillingness to leave a warm bed and soft curves. If only he could remember her name now...

Dokugakuji went over the events from the day before once again, searching back for something to jog his sleep-fuddled lethargy. He and Yaone had returned to Houtu Castle after Kougaiji had shaken off the brainwashing Nii had used on him. The prince had given them orders to find his sister and rescue her at all costs while he paid a visit to that bastard of a scientist. No problems there. The security around the testing area Lirin was in was lax at best. Obviously, Nii felt with Kou out of the way there wouldn't be any need for real guards. It brought a wicked little smirk to his lips when he looked down that same hall now and saw professionally trained guards lined up double in front of the doors. That was one mistake the scientist wasn't about to repeat.

And from there... Yeah, that's right! He'd carried Lirin to her own room, Yaone and Kougaiji following close behind. Yaone had examined the princess thoroughly to ensure she was alright, and waited until the girl was asleep before insisting on doing the same for Kougaiji. An hour later, she'd been satisfied that he was physically fine, if a little drained by the whole ordeal. They'd left him to watch over his sister in peace, both of them knowing how terrified the prince had been before Lirin was returned to him. The relief that had slumped his proud shoulders spoke volumes to that worry, and also told them that he would probably appreciate some alone time with her.

They'd walked down the halls silently together, Dokugakuji escorting Yaone to her room as he normally did. He didn't trust the way the soldiers leered at her. Not that he doubted she wouldn't put up one hell of a fight. The girl was a hellcat when given the right motivation, but after the stress and worry since all this had started... Well, it didn't hurt to have a tall, strong guy walking at your back. A quick glare from him was usually enough to keep most of the lewd glances at bey.

Okay, so he'd walked her to her room. They'd talked for a bit, keeping the conversation as light as possible and only focusing on how good it was to have their lord back. A silence came after only a few minutes of this meaningless conversation. Yaone had lowered her head so that her bangs and lashes hid her eyes from him. Dokugakuji had shifted a little, preparing himself to make the good night that her body language said was expected... when she did something that literally made his heart puddle into mush in his stomach.

He'd never been a man to stand for a woman in tears. It usually meant she'd been hurt in some way, and he didn't tolerate that. Not to mention it struck a little close to home with his heart. He always made it a point to try not to make a woman cry because he was never sure what to do about it. Except... Was it wrong to think she looked beautiful with reddened eyes and tears sparkling in copper brown depths? There had to be a law somewhere dictating that this woman wasn't allowed to look so incredibly vulnerable as she covered her moistened eyes with one hand and turned away with a softly sobbed, "I'm sorry."

The effect her voice, so broken and sad sounding, combined with the delicate beauty he'd noticed but never really appreciated until she'd started to cry, was like an electric snap to his spine. His chest had tightened, heart clenching briefly before releasing into a faster beat. His arms had itched with the need to hold her, his voice ached to tell her everything was okay now. Hell, his whole system was practically burning with the need to comfort her in any way he could.

That was the only thing he could think of for why he turned her about again, one arm wrapped around her waist to keep her from retreating while his free hand tipped her chin up to see the rivulets of tears stream down her flushed cheeks. Slowly, Yaone allowed her eyes to open fully, thick black lashes acting as a curtain to revealing the show of her emotions. And what a show it was, too. Bright flashes of pure joy intermingled with the deepest dark of an agony he vaguely understood. Anger burned away against the well of sorrow he wanted to close up completely. It was the light sniffle that sealed it for him as he pulled her closer, enfolding her in his arms.

She stiffened at first, completely surprised at his actions, but then he felt the tentative touch of her hands to his hips before her arms slid back and up, fingers curling around his shoulders as she pressed her cheek to his chest. Her tears soaked into the cotton of his jacket, cool now that they'd been exposed for so long to the open air but welcomed all the same. Dokugakuji wanted to collect all those silvery little drops and make sure they never touched her cheeks again. As beautiful as she looked in this state, for some reason it bothered him to see her like this. The need to comfort was more fierce than any other woman's tears before hers. He continued to hold her while she cried out all the emotions she'd carefully kept checked in place while in their lord's presence.

Dokugakuji's eyes flew open as the next bit of memory suddenly bitch slapped his awareness into full alert. His arms, wrapped around the soft body of his lover, stiffened in surprise. It was while he'd been holding her before... No, he didn't... Drawing back carefully enough not to wake her, he was confronted with deep violet hair and pale, creamy skin. Gods, he did. He'd slept with Yaone. Panicked adrenaline kicked into his system and it took everything he had not to just fling himself from her bed and run for the door, regardless of the fact that he was stark naked.

Yaone had made the first move last night. He'd been holding her when he'd received the shock of his life in the press of her lips to his neck, tongue flicking out to taste the faint edges of sweat that still clung to him from the fight. He'd drawn back, looking down at her in surprise while his body leapt for joy (or, to be more precise, certain parts of his body leapt up) at the soft, erotic touch. He had no idea what it was that made him lean down to her though and brush his lips across hers in a light, awkward first kiss. Hesitant on both their parts for that initial touch, it acted like a spark that brought them back together again for more. One more... then two... and when one of her arms circled his neck, fingers slipping up through his short hair... That was when he'd officially been done.

Maybe it was her eyes that drew him in. Those same eyes that had been so filled with a myriad of conflicting emotions had seemingly decided on one to express fully; love. Don't ask how he knew it, but he knew that the warmth in those copper colored eyes wasn't lust. It ran much deeper than that, touching way down into her soul. He'd realized in the space of those few frozen seconds between intial shock and their first kiss that she'd felt this way for some time. For whatever reason, she'd elected to keep it to herself.

Then again... it very well could have been her mouth that did it. Lips a pale pink, not too thin but not the thickness that most men looked for. No paint to hide the natural color that was about three shades more pink than her pale skin. Yaone needed no make up to be attractive. They'd parted a little as he'd drawn back, letting just a faint sigh of breath loose to grace the air. Her lips looked soft, slightly moist and very, very inviting. He'd just had to see if they were.

Or perhaps it was the way her body reacted to his, her hips circling just slightly against his, breasts pressing against his chest with each shallow breath she took. Her fingers that had been curled on his shoulders slipping lower down his back until they traced the base of his spine, right above where his back turned into ass. One of her hands finally slid low across his waist, following the line of his belt, before moving up the fabric covering his chest. Her fingers pressed in firmly, feeling the muscles in his abdomen before moving higher up his chest. She paused in her explorations when she felt his heart slam into his rib cage before moving her hand to rest on his shoulder.

Whatever it was that prompted him to lean down to her, that one kiss had exploded into several gentle little pecks. Those pecks gave way to a hesitant exploration of tongues as lips parted. He remembered thinking as she opened the door to her room and guided him inside, not once breaking the kiss for so much as a glance to see where she was going, that she had the sweetest mouth he'd ever had the pleasure of experiencing. Had he'd known that she kissed so well from the start, he probably would have initiated this a lot sooner.

Dokugakuji rolled cautiously onto his back, staring up at the ceiling of Yaone's room as other images and memories came back to him. Memories of just how sweet that mouth of hers really was, of how her hands had been so possessive yet tender in touching him. The woman last night wasn't the prim and proper lady he'd always thought her to be. Last night, she'd been fiercely passionate while maintaining a certain air of gentleness to her that solidified any doubts he might have had that they were making love and not just screwing. Most guys would say there was no difference. There was, and it was a HUGE difference. Screwing didn't involve emotions. It was all about feeling good fast, with little regard for your partner's feelings in the process. Making love was more intense. It involved reading what your partner was thinking, how they were responding. The goal wasn't to get off but to build it up and make sure your partner was having a good time as well.

But, damn... He'd just slept with Yaone. Dokugakuji's eyebrows screwed tightly over his eyes as he ran a free hand back through his messed up hair. His other hand was resting low on her hip, his arm pinned under her body as she used his shoulder for a pillow. Him... and Yaone. He expected to feel bad about it. Even with all the emotion he'd picked up from her, this was still a spur of the moment act. Besides that, they'd been close friends from the moment they'd met some three or four years ago. He'd always thought of Yaone as his closest friend, or even a younger sister perhaps. She was only a year older than his kid brother, for the gods' sakes.

Despite all the reasons in the world to feel bad about it... he didn't. It was weird not to feel guilty about sleeping with his friend and collegue, but he couldn't help it. If anything, waking up in her room with her laying next to him and peacefully asleep was something that made his heart ache in a good way. He sucked in a deep breath and held it for a couple seconds before releasing it and relaxing into her again. This felt so much different than waking up in another woman's bed. Yeah, it had been nice and there ws also a chance of some good, slow morning sex, but he'd always had the feeling that he needed to clear out relatively soon. Here, with the way Yaone's arm circled his lower stomach, one of her legs thrown over and slight between his own, he felt... at home? Safe? Damn it, what was the word...

Loved. Dokugakuji blinked as the word snapped through his head. Loved? It mulled around in his head a little longer, kicking out any other words that threatened to take over its place in his thoughts. Loved... Well, and why the hell not? Hadn't he just said they'd made love last night? It really wasn't surprising then that she'd make him feel loved even while sleeping. In fact, now that he thought about it a bit more, the way she was holding him was a little possessive, like she was ready and willing to play tug-o-war with another woman over him just to keep him in her bed. The image of her pulling on one of his arms while another woman pulled back on the other brought an amused chuckle bursting from his lips before he could stop it.

Yaone shifted, murmuring something so thick with sleep he couldn't catch it. The hand curled around his hip slipped upward a little, making him jerk quickly before catching himself as she found the ticklish spot on his side. His breath stuck in his chest when she turned her face slightly against his chest, her lips pressing in a quick kiss before she resettled herself against him with a contented sigh of his name. Dokugakuji stared at the top of her head that was now resting squarely on his chest and... He understood now why this felt so very comfortable and correct. Just that one little kiss, given while she was still asleep and his name whispered just like that told him everything he needed to know about her, himself, and this. She loved him... and he loved her, too. That was why this felt different. He hadn't loved the other women, not like this. This, he knew, was the real thing. This was why people stayed married for fifty years, or why they risked everything for one person. He didn't know when he'd fallen in love with Yaone, and it didn't really matter. What counted was that he knew he loved her now and wanted to keep loving her for as long as he could.

Dokugakuji smiled, bringing the hand that was on her hip slowly up up her back, his fingertips tracing along the faint ridges of bone he could feel there. He leaned down enough to brush a kiss through her hair, his hand now tracing lazy patterns over her shoulder. The sun was now in the full dawn position, which was more than a little irritating for him. He shot it a glare, which turned into a squinting as the beams slapped him in the face. Shit, he had to get up soon. Kougaiji wanted him on the training fields early, and he wanted to get a shower in before doing so. It was soon going to be obvious enough that he was with Yaone, but he didn't want the prince or anyone else to find out because they smelled her all over him.

Carefully, he extracted himself from her arms, making soft hushing sounds as she murmured a protest, her eyebrows scrunching tightly as she reached for him. Dokugakuji tucked the covers around her better, ignoring the chillness that hit his bare skin all over. He smoothed the hair back from her cheek, his chest tight with the desire to just crawl back in and forget training and all that. Damn it, why did the sun have to rise to soon? He stepped away from her once she was asleep again, quickly throwing on his clothing and preparing to leave. He was half way to the door when he stopped, turned around and went back to press a soft kiss to her forehead and steal one final caress of her cheek before he was gone.

As he walked down the hall, he got a few odd looks from some of the servants and guards wandering around in the early morning hour. He could guess why, too. It was probably the goofy as hell grin that couldn't seem to leave his face. Every time the words 'Yaone loves me' circled around in his head again, that grin would tug and insist on making itself known to the world. Personally, and he knew Yaone would be horrified if she knew he'd thought this, waking up in the morning in her bed completely blew away and joy he'd felt when Kougaiji had returned to them. Yeah, he knew they still had a lot to talk about in regards to where they would go from this point on, but... this was a good thing. This was a very good thing.

Now all he had to do was get through today's duties without anyone asking why the hell he couldn't stop smiling.