Chapter Eleven- Heaven Sent

summary- I thought of Maron and decided, what would she be like if the story was more mature? Not in that way you pervs, but what if she was less magical girl-ish. She still has magical powers, but she's a little older, and she uses her God-given supernatural strength, speed, and agility to fight instead (you know, the one that lets her jump on rooftops and stuff). Oh, and Finn is not evil here. I just can't stand the thought of cute little Finn having to be bad (sob sob sob). So... on with the story and I hope you enjoy. Happy readings!

ratings- T (just in case)

pairings- MaronxChiaki, JeannexSinbad, FinnxAccess

disclaimer- I own neither Kamikaze Kaitou Jeanne nor its characters. However, anyone who dares to take this story, word for word, as their own will have to answer to Finn and Access personally. And they have fangs. Just remember- you have been warned.

last note: to change character perspective, I had to put their names, because this site's not letting me just put the dash on its own. Sorry for any inconvenience it may cause.

previously in chapter ten...

"Jeanne!"

She closed her eyes, willing herself to block out his voice. She didn't need him. She could do all the work by herself.

"Jeanne!"

The kaitou fought to keep her pace even. She didn't have to run. Not from him. No one could catch her.

"God sent me, Jeanne!"

She paused, steps faltering. His shout seemed to echo in the cool night air, loud enough to wake up everyone and reach the heavens.

Slowly, she turned, not wanting to believe her ears.

His eyes met hers as he stood, tall and unfaltering.

"He sent me to you, to help you."

and now... on with the story!

"He... what?" Jeanne said. Why would God send someone to help her? She was doing great without help. There were no problems with her. There had never been any problems.

"He knows what you're doing. He's... worried about you."

Jeanne felt tears well up in her eyes, threatening to fall. Images of her parents flashed through her mind, and she turned her back on him, unwilling to let him see her looking so weak. No... she was not going to go through this again. She wasn't going to think about the emotions it made her feel. Again, she took steps to leave.

"Jeanne, you have to listen to me." Sinbad said, his voice soft, but firm. It made her feel pitied, and that made her angry- angry at Sinbad, angry at herself... and angry at God for not leaving the subject alone. She didn't want to deal with it. She just wanted an escape. That's what being a kaitou had been about. She wasn't supposed to have to face reality when she was Jeanne.

"Maron."

The sound of her name, spoken so softly from his lips, was almost her undoing. She felt the tears threaten the surface of her lids and her throat constricted almost painfully. Her steps halted, but she refused to turn around.

"Tell God to assign you somewhere else. I don't need any help. I'm doing fine on my own."

And then she ran, leaping to other rooftops and away into the night.

-Jeanne; at a park two blocks from home-

She pulled at the tie that kept her hair up, undoing her transformation from kaitou Jeanne.

As Maron, she took a deep breath. The cool air filled her lungs and swept through her hair, and she sighed, forlorn.

Help? She didn't need help. She was fine on her own.

She looked to the clear night sky, dotted with stars and a beautiful round moon.

"Do you hear me? I don't need help! I'm strong!"

She stared at the stars, her expression looking a little sad.

"I'm... strong."

-Chiaki; school-

The next day, Chiaki noticed that Maron still seemed to be a bit despondent. She ignored him as usual, but now there was an added element to it- she was actively avoiding him. Miyako noticed it too, because she pulled him aside during break and asked him about whether or not the two of them had some kind of falling out. He had been unable to give her a straight answer. Because, to be honest, he didn't even know how to classify his relationship with Maron before she had started avoiding him. They certainly hadn't been friends, although he had definitely been aiming for at least that (although if he was honest, he had been aiming for her to fall for him). Now it was like...

-Maron-

Maron sat alone in her place while Finn was out scouting her next job.

It wasn't the silence of the apartment, or the nervousness of the upcoming job that made her feel like her she couldn't breathe, but the knowledge of what she was going to do. To confide in someone she barely knew, all because they shared similar circumstances. And really, they weren't even that similar. But they were both kaitous, sent by God to eradicate the evil on Earth. Besides, she needed to set the record straight with him.

-Sinbad; two nights later-

It was like she was trying to run away from it all.

The thief stood watch off to the sidelines as the adept female kaitou dodged the guards her best friend had placed around the painting. She finished, as always, with a flourish, before striking the painting with her pin and catching the resulting chess piece.

She looked up at him, and although her face was cheerful and jeering before as she danced among the officers, it was now solemn. Not as if she was just hiding something, but as if she had made some sort of conclusion.

-Kaitou Jeanne; present mission-

She stared up at Sinbad on his hidden away perch, having dropped the cheerful facade that she wore as a thief in lieu of the serious mask that she was now using to hide her uneasiness. She motioned for him to follow her as she escaped out the opposite window. She could already hear Miyako's disbelieving shriek at the ineffectiveness of her trap, but despite the fact that they were now back to routine, it was still a bit shaky in their relationship as thief and self-proclaimed thief catcher since the "incident", so Jeanne did no more than leave a parting note

'Better luck next time. -Kaitou Jeanne'

to flutter to the floor as she departed and her unbeknownst best friend entered the room.

-Sinbad; outside-

He was getting quite used this was the kaitou's first thought as he climbed on top of the roof that Jeanne was on. She had picked the same place that they had had 'that' talk, except that this time the moonlight was so minuscule that Jeanne didn't bother to stand that close to the chimney. That night seemed so far away now, in light of the progress the two of them had made in their... somewhat relationship. The way that she was staring at him now, with such a serious expression, testified to the fact that they were moving forward together... somehow.

"Have you ever wondered why I'm a kaitou?"

Her question came out of the blue, and she looked at him, her blue orbs boring into his. The intensity of her gaze stole anything that he might've said out of his throat. She looked so powerful, strong. And alone.

Surprisingly, Jeanne looked away first.

"I haven't seen my parents in a long time. They work abroad, and left me home alone. I felt useless. No matter how much I did, no matter how good I was, it was just me."

She looked so sad, he couldn't help but want to go over and hold her close. Tell her that it was alright. But she spoke again before he had the chance to decide whether that was a good idea or not.

"Then I met Finn. She told me that Kami needed me. That I was the only one who could change the world. Save it. That I was special. And she promised to stay by my side."

She looked his way.

"But then you came along. I wasn't so special anymore. It upset me."

As if ashamed of her words, her eyes drifted away.

"I enjoy being Kaitou Jeanne. It makes me feel strong..." she seemed to stare off into the distance, and Chiaki couldn't help but be drawn in by the look on her face.

"... needed..."

she looked at him then

"... wanted. I don't want to just fade into the background and be forgotten again."

So she had felt challenged by his position. Afraid. Alone again. He didn't want that. It wasn't why he was there. It wasn't what he wanted for her.

"You are wanted, Maron." he said, purposely using her real name so that she knew which side of her he was talking about.

"We want you. We need you. Kaitou Jeanne, or Maron Kusakabe. Whichever form you take, we need you to be yourself. Otherwise, we'd loose. After all"

he offered her a smile

"I don't have the ability to fulfill God's wishes on my own. Without you, I'd be lost. And not just when we're hunting demons."

She gave him a look that let him know that she didn't understand.

"What do you mean?"

The sound of their scanners went off, and the kaitous looked around them in time to see six black shadows rise from the ground to surround them.

"Drat. We were too focused. We should have seen them coming."

Jeanne spun to face the nearest one, her back to him. And Chiaki did the same, so that he was protecting her from behind. Damn it. This was too soon.

-Kaitou Jeanne-

"Don't sweat it. This is why I was sent to help you. He saw this coming. I would have preferred to prove myself to you first, but... well, I guess I'll just have to show you my full ability now." he sent her a charming grin before turning his eyes back to their opponents.

She didn't have to ask who Sinbad was referring to. But she did want to know why Kami had decided to send him instead of telling her directly. Still, that would have to be a question for another time. For now, she had to focus on the task at hand. One was easy. Six shouldn't be much more difficult.

Jeanne shifted her stance, preparing herself to attack, pins at the ready. But for some reason, she didn't feel tense. If anything, she felt...

"Well, I guess I'll just have to see for myself how good you are. Playtime's over. No more tests. This is the real thing." Jeanne replied, willing herself not to smile back at him. It was contagious when he did it. For some reason, it eased her and made her muscles relax a bit so that they weren't so tense. It was weird having someone stand at her side, but she still didn't know whether he could handle himself or not. She had no reason to feel comforted. So why did she?

"Don't worry. I won't disappoint you."

That made her look at him. That he could say something like that so casually to her... The very idea brought back memories that she'd rather forget. Of waiting in the dark, alone at home, waiting for her parents to call or return to her.

A black movement out of the corner of her eye had her spinning back, pin flying to meet the shadow before it had gotten very far. And then the real work began and all she could focus on was the present.

-Kaitou Sinbad-

He jumped out of the way of another shadow, aiming a pin its way and hitting it square in the chest. Another came up behind him, and he spun in time to block its downward strike with his arm. Locked in a power struggle against the demon, he couldn't reach for a pin. Sinbad grit his teeth and prepared to kick the shadow to get some space between them. But before he could, a white pin shot past his head and hit his opponent in the neck.

As the shadow demon screamed, he turned towards where the pin had come from, to tell Jeanne that he had had it under control-

only to stop speechless as he watched her work.

Jeanne had dodged a simultaneous attack from two of the shadows, back-flipping over a third as it grabbed for her. She landed on its shoulders and pushed off as one of the other demons lunged for her.

Jeanne landed lightly and spun in time to dodge the third shadow from getting a hit. She grabbed its arm and pulled it past her as the other two ran forward. Jeanne was surrounded.

Before he could run to help her, he saw it- her smile.

Confident, the kaitou grinned in triumph, her hands spreading to reveal three white pins.

And just as the three remaining demons charged at her, she twirled, hitting each one in the center of their chest. And as they exploded and became captured into white chess pieces, she faced him again, hair flying and with the same brilliant smile on her face. And Chiaki felt as if the breath had left his body.

It was like she was an angel.

end chapter