085 of 100 Challenge


She thinks I'm stupid.

I can't help but laugh at the idea of it. She truly believes that I haven't got a clue that she's totally in love with me. Well I do, cuz it's damn-right obvious. Her reasoning is that I don't know how to love-- that I don't know what love is, and can therefore not understand her feelings for me. Bull shit. I ain't stupid. Sure, I've never been loved by anyone other than my mother, and even that I have to assume, because I was too young when she died to remember, but I've been hated by and hated enough people to know exactly what love isn't.

Love isn't being betrayed and potentially killed. Love isn't wandering places alone, because you can't stand other people. It isn't paying for a shag at some sub-par brothel, or the dirty, sweaty, raunchy sex that whores seem to think gets men off. I glance at Fuu while I deduct my conclusions. If that is what love isn't, than it must be trust, companionship, mutual and pure. Love is being willing to die for that person.

See, I ain't stupid.

She's staring at me again. I can always tell, because she radiates sadness. She doesn't think I can't love her back. I bark at her to quit fawning at me; she automatically denies even looking in my general direction.

I may not be stupid, but I sure as hell can ignore it. You see, I don't want to hurt the girl-- she happens to be one of the closest things to a friend that I have ever had. But although I'm completely aware of what love is, I think she may be right. I think I may not be capable of feeling it for anyone. At least-- I'd never be willing to die for her.

She quickens her pace to walk next to me.

"Hey, Mugen?"


She gets quiet again, like I knew she would. She doesn't argue with me much any more; she sighs a lot, and frowns a lot, and cries a lot at night, when she thinks I'm sleeping.

"I just--"


"I wanted to thank you-- again. For… saving my life… so many times."

I snort loudly, smirking. "Whatever."

A frown creases her brow. "No… It really means a lot, you know, that you would risk your life for me like that."

I stop walking and stare at her.


All of those situations came flooding back to me in waves. Every frustrated sigh when I realized she was missing. Every frantic shout to find out where she was. Every surge of anger when I saw someone with their hands all over her, as if she was theirs.

She was looking at me with a quizzical expression.

I shook my head to clear my thoughts. "Nothing," I said, catching up to her. I draped my arm over her shoulder and gave her a lecherous grin. "You know, you could pay me back for all them favors I did ya."

She recoiled within herself again, taking herself out of my reach. I swallowed hard and looked straight ahead, paying far too much attention to every one of my footsteps taking me forward. Those 'favors' were haunting me, for the far more frightening prospect was the conclusion I had come to.

Would I do it again?

Even if it killed me.

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