L x Raito
Chapter 1 - Of Plotting And Rude Awakenings
It had been centuries since a star had fallen to Earth. And though nobody knew how the star's story had ended, they all agreed that it was a dark day indeed, when the light of a star was snuffed out.
For the light of a star was more than it seemed. In the sky, it was an untouchable entity, a bright light in the midst of darkness, a guide to the lost traveler, a source of wonder and mystery to children. But when a star fell, it became more than what it once was.
The legend went that the stars held the key to life, death, and all things eternal. Furthermore, there were those who believed the stars bore the secret to immortality.
Only a few knew the truth. That truth being that one could live their days eternal, a true immortal…
…if only they possessed the heart of a fallen star.
"Hundreds of years the gatekeepers have stood guarding the gap in the wall, the portal to another world, giving none passage from either side, and your asking me to just let you through?!"
"Yes." Ryuuzaki stated, rather matter of fact. Refusing to blink, he tried to stare down the old man through force of will alone, and was having a rather fruitless20time of it. He should have guessed though. After raising him from the time he was a baby, Roger had developed immunity to all of Ryuuzaki's 'looks'. It was rather annoying at the moment however, considering Ryuuzaki only wanted to get through the wall so he could find a bloody hunk of space junk and pay Roger back.
Said old man was now staring at Ryuuzaki as though he were crazy. Biting the inside of his lip, Ryuuzaki attempted to reason with the old goat. Gesturing to and through the gap in the wall to the land behind, he began. "It is a field, Roger. Now, do you see anything unnatural about the field? Anything mysterious or nonhuman? Anything that indicates that this field is anything other than a perfectly normal field?" Ryuuzaki answered for him. "No. And do you know why?" He couldn't help but let a small amount of his irritation show through at this point, a small gesture of temper present in the sharp motion of his arms. "Because it's a bloody field!"
Ryuuzaki had never been one to delude himself with the fantastical, therefore putting little stock in the legend of the wall and the so-called 'other world' it contained. Which was just making the situation more frustrating, explaining his uncharacteristic display of emotion.
Still, Roger's jaw clenched stubbornly in a manner Ryuuzaki recognized quite well.&nb sp; "I've already broken the rules once lad, letting you cross the border when you were only a babe. And I shall not be breaking it again for the silly whim of a misguided youth!"
Knowing there would be no compromise, Ryuuzaki stepped forward anyway, ready to force his way past if he had to, raising one arm to take a swing at the man. If he had to beat up his guardian… well, so be it, it was for the man's own good in the long run.
It was a mere ten seconds later that he found himself on his back in the dirt, his arm smarting from where his swing had been blocked, his body bearing a couple of minor bruises, and his eyes staring up at the blunt end of the scythe that had caused it all.
He had just gotten beat up by a sixty-plus year old man.
He tried to comfort his sore ego by reminding himself that all those years had given said man plenty of time to practice. More of the intellectual type, he had always been a bit lacking in the more physical pursuits. Including fighting, as it were.
"Off you go then." Roger waved at him, his tone almost mockingly polite. Ryuuzaki scrambled to his feet, eying the old man's stick with a bit more respect.
Roger almost growled at him. "Get yourself back to the house. Try anything more and I will take this matter before the village council!"
"W ell, that… does sound rather final." Ryuuzaki muttered grudgingly, turning around and starting back home in a slow, discouraged plod. He heard the gatekeeper muttering to himself, but waited until there was the tell-tale sound of fabric shifting as the old man turned around to glance back. His back turned, Roger was trudging back towards the gap, paying the retreating youth no attention whatsoever.
He made a sharp turn, breaking out into an immediate sprint and racing straight past Roger's unsuspecting figure. Taking a running jump and easily clearing the small patch of rubble that marked the open piece in the wall, he continued through the long grass of the field, ignoring Roger's calls for him to wait, to stop, to get back there right this minute. He didn't slow until he was well into the trees on the far side of the meadow, letting himself slump into his usual walk and calming his breath.
He found a path surprisingly fast, considering it was after midnight and just about as dark as it was possible for night to be. Traveling for a few miles, he finally reached the peak of a small hill in which the road had led him up, his eyes going wide as they were abruptly assaulted by light. Below him was what seemed to be a small, circular shaped town, and if the noise was any indication, it seemed that it was in the middle of a festival of some sort.
Gathering his fleeing wits , he made his way to the entrance, strolling through the large wooden gates and immediately freezing his tracks. He was just able to recognize what he assumed to be a marketplace, though the only thing it had in common with any he had seen were the carts and stands. The merchandise was utterly extraordinary and unbelievably disconcerting, he just managed to process, regarding a stand that was piled with jars full of eyes of all colors, before turning to view one selling a two headed elephant small enough to fit in the palm of his hand.
He definitely wasn't in England anymore.
"Damn it! Mello, did you break my fucking game again? It won't run!"
"Shut the hell up, Matt, I didn't touch your fucking game and you know it! It's probably just dusty or something, try blowing on it, genius!"
"Whatever…" There was a whoosh of air as the red haired boy blew on the bottom of the disk, followed by a sneeze as he got a face full of dust. Then, suddenly, silence.
"See, I told you! Idiot, think before you go around accusing peop- Matt? Are you alright?" B watched with gleeful eyes as the numbers floating above the boys heads began changing at a dizzying pace, till finally they all read zero, and the boy fell to the floor with a decisive thump.
"OH MY GOD! MATT!"& nbsp; Mello was immediately beside the dead body, flipping it over to get a better look and to check if the boy was really dead. Though, it was made pretty obvious when a ghost appeared, sitting on the television, arms crossed and looking pissed. An angry, goggle and stripe clad pissed, which did tend to ruin the overall effect. B grinned as he viewed Mello's shocked expression.
Yes, covering Matt's games with poisonous dust really had been a stroke of genius, if he did say so himself. One brother down, two more annoyances to go. B blinked when he suddenly found himself staring into angry black eyes.
"YOU did this, didn't you!? You bastard, I'm gonna-!"
"Kill me?" He asked drolly, his lips twitching into a smirk. "That's rather the whole point, isn't it? Who can kill who first?"
"He's got you there." The sullen ghost pointed out from it's perch. "I mean, it's tradition after all. Even with all the Deathnote hubbub. And it's not like I'm the first to go." Matt's ghost made a vague gesture to one end of the room, where a near mob of ghosts were making their way in through the wall. They had likely sensed the death of yet another of their father's ilk, and come to see whom it was this time.
"So, it was Matt." br
B was almost startled by the young, monotone voice, turning quickly to see Near standing at the doorway, looking completely unruffled by the death of his older sibling. Not that he hadn't been expecting it, of course.
"What, disappointed, Near? You should have known better."
"Yes, I had rather been hoping you would be the next dead." Near stated calmly, eyes observing Matt's lifeless form and Mello's fuming countenance.
"Yes, that would have been to your benefit. Then you would only have had Mello and his little lackey to deal with."
"HEY!" Mello was immediately on his feet and, if the yelling and body language was any indication, was two baby steps away from a full blown temper tantrum. Same old, same old. Meanwhile, Matt seemed to be more concerned with the fact that he was unable to hold a game controller in his less that corporeal form than the fact that he had just been insulted. Or killed.
B didn't turn to look as he heard Near softly padding away once more, having confirmed the identity of the recently departed. Near was the tricky one; he'd have to save him for later, when he could give the little pest his full attention. For now…
He would work on getting Mello out of the way. In fact, he already had an idea of how to do so…
After all, h e knew Mello's one weakness. And he did have a very close acquaintance that sold many outlandish, rare, and sought-after substances from all over the world, across the wall even…
Including, as it were, chocolate.
Misa gingerly swept the cobweb away from the bookshelf, squinting her eyes in an attempt to read the titles. It was so difficult, she wasn't really that great of a reader to begin with, but old age had made her eyes bad. Such a horribly inconvenient thing, old age. She wasn't going to die from it - what Kira died from old age, after all - but still, it made life more difficult.
She finally spied the book she had been looking for, and reached out one hand to take it off the shelf. She paused, staring at the liver spotted, clawed hand, hovering in mid air, shaking slightly as they tended to do when one reached a certain age.
Dear God, what she wouldn't give to be young and beautiful again.
Suddenly, a piercing shriek rang through the whole house, loud and shrill enough to give her a headache, despite the fact that here hearing had been going recently as well.
Dropping the long sought book on the closest table, ignoring the cloud of dust it stirred up, Misa hurried towards the voice as quickly as her body allowed. Following the echoes of th e shriek to the entrance hall, where her brother and sister were waiting. That wasn't surprising.
What was surprising was that her sister, Takada, was staring into their seeing glass mirror, her eyes blood red. She hastened her steps more, wondering what could have caught her sister's attention so, that she would resort to using taxing magic to keep it within her sight. Mikami shared her puzzled glance, both regarding their older sister with unhidden curiosity.
"Well, what is it then?" Mikami broke the silence impatiently, one hand rising to push his glasses back into place on his nose. Misa felt a moment of sympathy for her brother, though only a moment. Mikami had aged the most gracefully, and was not bent over or completely decrepit as Takada and Misa were. But, in return, his eyes, memory, and magic were the worst of the three of them, decaying more quickly than that of his sisters. He was almost completely blind now, the poor thing.
Takada took a deep breath, facing them with a sharp movement, knocking her wig askew. She nearly breathed out her next sentence.
"A star… has fallen."
There was a bare moment of silence in which Misa and Teru were too stunned to react, before delighted shouts and shrieks echoed of the walls of the castle, startling the large assortment of animals, large and small, kept in cages on the other side of the entrance hall.&nbs p; It took a few minutes for their racket to quiet, enough time for the witches and warlock to calm slightly.
"Where is it, where is it sister? We must reach it at once!" Misa spit out eagerly, her hands wringing together in a greedy, grasping motion.
"I wasn't able to see from looking through the mirror."
"Then we will have to divinate its whereabouts." Mikami stated logically, already moving towards the cages of birds and beasts. He picked out a small, writhing ferret with black feet as Misa moved to retrieve a knife. Gathering together in the middle of the hall before a red washed platform, reminiscent of an alter, Mikami slammed the tiny creature onto it's back, stunning it for a moment. Raising the knife above her head, Misa thrust it into the ferrets chest, dragging it down and slitting the animal open all across it's long belly. It was dead within seconds.
Three heads leaned above the messy carcass, examining the internal organs closely. Finally they leaned back, expressions more solemn than when they had begun. Takada was the first to speak.
"If these divinations are correct, then the star has fallen one hundred miles from here."
Silent for a few moments, Mikami suddenly strode to a cupboard sitting next to the cages, flinging the doors open and squinting inside.
"Where is the Babylon Candle?
"Don't you remember? Misa used the last one seventy years ago." Takada stated.
"Perhaps we could acquire another one?"
"Fool! Your memory has decayed far more than your body!" Takada voice was scornful at this point. "You speak as though such things are freely available!"
"I was just saying…"
Misa interrupted the argument, focusing on the more important situation at hand. "Without a Babylon candle, we will need to travel the old fashioned way to retrieve it. And we must make haste, before some other witch discovers it and steals it while you two are busy squabbling!"
"Then all that remains is to decide who will be the one to fetch it." The three lined up beside the cooling body of the ferret, tilting their heads back and closing their eyes. Each reached a hand out, sticking it within the reeking guts spilling from the spit body, shifting around as if looking for something. Cracking one eye, Misa glanced warily at her siblings before looking down at the mess on the table, smirking as she closed her fingers.
Mikami was the first to pull his hand up, opening his eyes and looking down at the small organ he had in his hand. "I've its liver."
Takada was quick to answer. "I've its kidney."
Misa raised her prize triumphantly, smirking in what she thought to be an innocent manner. "And I've its heart."
She bore the moody looks of her siblings without batting an eye, Mikami finally admitting defeat as he ground out, "You'll be needing what's left of the last star then." Pointing a finger, a green flash emitted from the tip, darting towards a small box on top of an ornate table in one corner. Cobwebs glided off the lid in the magic's wake, folding demurely on the carved wood. Opening the box carefully, Misa darted out a hand to catch the small piece of glowing light held inside, a small, almost sad chime ringing out upon its capture.
"There's not much left," She said glumly, frowning,
Takada's voice was smooth and smug. "Soon there will be plenty for us all."
Carefully holding the small piece of star in one fist, Misa nearly ran towards the mirror her sister had been scrying through earlier, letting out an exultant cry as she tore her wig off, exposing her wrinkled, bald head. Grinning into the mirror, she gulped the small light down in one swallow.
Her form was briefly immersed with an otherworldly glow, and blonde tresses burst from her smoothing, firming scalp to brush against her shoulders. She blinked once more dark, lush eyelashes at her reflection, her hands coming up to frame a lovely, young face. Se eing her siblings jealous expressions in the mirror beside her own glowing image, she could not help but show off a bit. Slipping her gown off her shoulders, she stood naked. She ignored her brothers rolling of his eyes as she admired her form, turning this way and that so she saw the entirety. She was only snapped back to reality when a large gemstone ring was shoved unceremoniously onto her fingers. Bone white ruins were placed in her open hand, and she reached her other down to pull her dress back up, slipping it over the soft curve of her shoulders.
By the time she was dressed, her brother had gotten out the broken shards of glass from the Shinigami realm itself, the only material able to cut straight to a star's heart, without damaging the glowing light within.
The glowing light that would give them all back their youth, Misa reminded herself, carefully choosing a medium sized shard to carry with her on her journey. Turning towards the door out, she snapped her fingers, the chandeliers lined across the ceiling all lighting up, illuminating the utter chaos below.
"How have we lived like this all these years?" Misa whined aloud, eyes carefully skimming the mountains of junk shoved against various areas of wall. "Clean it up while I'm gone, so that we may once more live like the royalty we are!"
Finding what she sought, Misa snapped her fingers once more, an archaic black chariot rising from one pile, coming to float along behind her as she walked in a hurried pace towards the entrance, calling out.
"Do not fear, dear brother and sister. I will not fail."
"Near. Near! What are you doing?" Archbishop Anthony Rester quickened his paces as he entered the large ballroom the boy was seated in, playing with a multitude of toys. "You should be out searching for the 'item', you must reach it before your brothers! I, for one, would like to see a king not ruled by his own desires!" Kneeling next to the boy, he set what he hoped was an encouraging hand on his shoulders. "I have no doubt that the Kingdom of Stormhold would be a better place, with you on the throne."
"Well, well, well, isn't that interesting, Mello?"
"Indeed B, indeed." Stepping out of the shadow of the doorway, two forms moved forward. B wasn't terribly surprised by what he had heard, he knew Near had men in every corner of the kingdom, but Mello was seething next to him. Nearly frothing at the mouth, really. It was simply delightful.
The Archbishop stuttered for a moment, taking an instinctive step back away from the two, before straightening. They could practically see the man gathering his courage, before he bowed, choking out, "My apologies for any disrespect majesties. I simply wished to inquire at why you three have gathered here, rather than left in pursuit of the 'item'?
Mello was all too happy to answer for B. "We got called down here to meet a merchant who wishes to sell us some goods. We could hardly refuse, when we discovered that he had merchandise from across the wall."
Obviously still unhappy, but unable to do anything about it, the archbishop nodded his understanding. It was only a few seconds later that the grand doors to the ballroom burst open, and the very merchant they had been discussing swept in.
Immediately all sorts of gizmos and whatnots were thrust upon them, and even B found himself slightly overwhelmed at the enthusiasm of the merchant, one… ah, Demegawa, he believed it was.
It took a half hour for the supply of goods the man was selling to be exhausted, with several purchases made by all in hopes of simply shutting the man up. But finally it was over, and with a greedy smile, the man was about to bid them all ado. On the way out the door however, he paused, seeming to recall something, the princes and Archbishop barely managing to hold in groans.
"Before I head out, as a token of my appreciation for your purchases, I would like to offer you each a piece of the finest delicacy from across the wall, free of charge!"
The archbishop attempted to turn him down,=2 0without much luck. "Really, that is quite alright…"
"No, no, I insist! Each of you must have a taste of the finest chocolate England has to offer!"
Mello had reached his limit, it seemed, as he began yelling. "LISTEN MAN, WE DON'T NEED YOUR BLOODY - did you say chocolate?" And just like that, the magic word, and the temperamental blond was as tame as a kitten.
Excuse B whilst he gagged.
They found themselves presented with a tray, and each chose their own piece of chocolate. Mello chose the biggest, as was expected, but the Archbishop beat Near to the smallest piece. B simply went for one of the medium sized ones.
After they had each taken a bite, Demegawa abruptly left, with none of the cheap persuasion or delaying tricks they had been witness to over the last half hour. It was almost startling to once more be left in their own company. They all took a few well-deserved seconds to relax after the veritable typhoon of salesman they had just witnessed.
Relaxed, that is, until the Archbishop grabbed his neck, eyes bulging. They watched with alarm as he fell to the floor, gurgling and choking, before going silent and still.
B's head snapped up as he glared at Near, before turning to glance at Mello. Near's eyes didn't move from B. Mello glared at Near, glancing a B every once in a while. Finally Near's head turned to Mello, and Mello pointedly stared at B, refusing to meet his brother's eyes. B met Mello's stare, disconcerting him with the accusing gazes of two of his brothers.
Finally, Mello cracked a weak smile, making a slightly disdainful noise, as if blowing the whole thing off. Seconds later, his eyes rolled up in his head, choking noises emerging from his gaping jaw as he fell to the floor.
The ghost appeared seconds later, already in the middle of a tantrum to end all tantrums. It was promptly ignored in favor of the two remaining brothers to glare at one another. B brought one hand to his throat suddenly, eyebrows furrowing, raising a shaking hand to point at Near in accusation. "You!" He fell to the ground, landing with a loud thump.
Near was silent for a few seconds, turning his head this way and that to view the dead bodies around him. He didn't notice the slit of B's amused red eyes following him as he tilted his head back, a grin slowly spreading across his face. Closing black eyes, his hands spread and were held away from his body, a blissful expression on his face.
At that point, there was nothing B could do but burst out laughing.
Near's smile was gone immediately, and B felt the full force of his embarrassed and disappointed glare on him. He clapped his hands gleefully, pushing himself off the floor to stand before his brother. "You really thought you were king, didn't you?"
Near's voice was emotionless. "You killed the Archbishop?"
A wicked grin split B's face, his eyes practically dancing. "No, dear brother, I believe you will find that it was YOU who killed the Archbishop, by taking the wrong piece of chocolate." He waited a few seconds for the albino to process his statement before continuing. "Really little brother, do us all a favor and give up on finding the notebook. That is, if you want to live."
With a swish of his long black coat, B swept from the hall, dropping a few coins in Demegawa's hands as he passed the man in the hall. Outside, he mounted the horse his men had prepared, leading the procession out the gates and to the South, as the soothsayer had advised.
He had a Deathnote to find.
The marketplace was slow tonight, Naomi Misora observed dispassionately, her cheek resting on one hand. Not a sale yet, not of the apple blossoms, forget-me-nots, or even a honeydew or two. Her master would not be pleased.
But then again, she thought with a kick of her foot, when was Higuchi ever pleased? Maybe she should give up on this whole business and get a new job. Ha, that was funny, a new job. =2 0As if she had a choice. She kicked her foot again, growling as it was pulled short by the stretch of chain wrapped around her ankle.
A princess of the kingdom of stronghold, reduced to a common stall girl. How pathetic.
She was startled from her thoughts by a monotone voice, coming from a figure that had just stopped in front of her stall.
"Excuse me, what was that?" She asked without looking up.
"I said, would you happen to know where I might acquire a map?"
She let out a snort. "You won't find a map here stranger, or anywhere else for that matter. Stormhold is not a land that can be laid out on the surface of a paper."
A pause, then, "I… see. Yes. Hmm…"
She ignored him for a moment, her fingers moving in meaningless patterns on the wood before her. She held back a long suffering sigh when the man in front of her spoke once more.
"Then, I don't suppose you could point me in the direction of the fallen star then, could you?"
She froze for a bare moment, her breath catching in her chest before her head jerked up. "A star, when - just who do you think you…" She trailed off as she got her first good look at the man in front of her.
Large, black eyes, with a matching mop of hair on the top of20his head. Thin, pale features set in an expression of absolute indifference, lean shoulders slumped over. A frank, unabashed stare that was nearly impossible to ignore.
The very image of her father, King Eraldo Coil in his younger years. She might have mistaken him for her brother, B, had his eyes been red.
At that moment, a door slammed open behind them, a man emerging from the inside of a brightly painted cart. His face was toad-like, with a wide mouth and bulgy eyes. He looked over to Naomi and the stranger, his mouth curving in an unpleasant sneer.
"I don't tolerate time wasters. Either buy something or leave." He turned his attention to her for a bare moment. "I'm off to the Slaughtered Prince for a pint." He turned, his balding head and grotesque features quickly melting into the crowd before disappearing altogether.
She waited only a few more seconds before grabbing the arm of the stranger, pulling him up towards the cart. The enchanted chain chimed behind her, dragging through the dirt, and attracting the stranger's eyes. Noticing his attention on the chain, she offered a brief explanation as she hurried him up the stairs to the cart, shutting the door behind them. "Enchanted chain. Keeps me bound to my master and his will. Won't release me till the man is dead." She let out a20bitter laugh. "But knowing how long the Kira live, that's a bit unlikely, wouldn't you say?"
"I wouldn't know." The man blinked once at her, owlishly. "I'm rather new to this world, as it were."
"You're from across the wall?" She said in surprise, eyeing the man once more. Had she been mistaken? But no, there was no mistaking the man's bloodline, not for one who belonged to it herself… But to come from across the wall, how…
Well, no matter. It was a question that could be answered later. Right now there were more pressing matters at hand.
"What is it that you want with the fallen star?"
The man shrugged, answering nonchalantly. "Nothing really. Just want to pay back a long standing debt, and I figured it might be valuable. Why?"
Valuable? That had to be the biggest understatement of the century… But it was obvious he had no idea what he would truly be dealing with, and that was comforting in a way. If a star really had fallen… well, she could at least count herself lucky that her master didn't know of it. But she couldn't hope that all the Kira were as unobservant as Higuchi. And if any of them got to the star…
She grit her jaw, her expression stubborn. Well, she just could n't let that happen, could she?
She wouldn't be able to go, obviously, because of the chain that had bound her here for a good portion of her young life. But, if this man were truly of the blood, and had no ill intentions where the star was concerned… She looked at him again in scrutiny, before nodding and moving towards the back of the small room, ignoring the man's eyes on her back.
"I have something that will help you on your journey to the star." She said without preamble, sliding open a hidden panel in the wall, the only secret she had managed to keep from her master. Shifting through her small pile of possessions, her hand closed upon a small, black candle. Swallowing down her bitterness at the loss of her most valuable possession, she turned around, holding it out to the man.
He took it from her, and she could just see the faint look of confusion in his eyes. Good, he didn't wear his heart on his sleeve. A point in his favor.
"A… candle?" He said slowly.
"Not just a candle. A Babylon Candle."
He was looking at her as if she were a bit daft. She sighed patiently.
"Listen, I can see that you don't know much of what you've gotten yourself into, crossing the wall as you have. But things work differently around here. What you hold in your h and," She gestured to the candle, "Is one of the most valuable of magical items this world has to offer."
He brought a thumb up, biting it gently as he examined the candle with a more appraising gaze. "If that is the case… then what purpose does it hold for me?"
"The fastest way to travel is by candle light." Naomi explained softly, lighting a match against the rough wood that made up the walls of the cart. She held the small flame just inches from the wick of the candle held in the man's hands. "Just think of the star - of ONLY the star - before lighting the candle. Then let the magic sweep you away."
He set his eyes on her face. "Why are you helping me?"
She smiled softly, touching the flame to the wick. "You're not the one I'm helping."
His eyes were wide as he disappeared in a flash of golden light.
Misa was only about an hour's distance from the castle, but already she was sick of the whole 'traveling on foot thing'. Yes, her body was young once again. No, that did not mean she had ever enjoyed such a common pursuit as exercise. Sweat was beneath her.
She was almost far enough gone to give a sigh of relief when she spotted the small cottage just a half mile away. But it woul dn't do to forget her stature, or lose an opportunity to flaunt her womanly charms. Resisting a giggle at the last thought, she attempted to pull herself together a bit; a queen shouldn't be quite so bubbly. It was the after effect of eating that last piece of star, she was sure. Yes, that star had been utterly delightful, a bright, happy young thing.
So full of youth and life. A pity she wasn't a very big star; she hadn't lasted as long as they had hoped.
Not like the one they were going after now. This heart would truly keep her young forever, she was sure. After all, it was hard not to notice that the North Star was no longer in the sky. The biggest and brightest.
And it would be all hers, from the moment she cut the heart from its chest and swallowed it whole.
She wrinkled her nose. A pity she had to share such a wonderful thing with her brother and sister.
But she was at the cottage now, and was rather unimpressed with what she found. A small, wooden cart with a broken wheel. But she could fix that, if she didn't mind using a little magic, she supposed….
Pointing a finger, a green spark lit from the end, hurtling to the cart. A series of more green sparks flowing over the surface, and there it was. A heavy black chariot, worthy of her stature and her quest. Now she just needed something to p ull it.
She heard an alarmed bleat, and turned around to see a small white goat cowering in a small pen at the side of a cottage, beady brown eyes fixed on the cart. Oh, she must have scared the poor thing. She might have found it in her to go and comfort it if the man hadn't come out, muttering something about skittish goats and hangovers.
Misa grinned. He was pretty good looking, with long black hair and a delicate face. A fast, and very brief switch to the Shinigami sight revealed his name.
Namikawa. Hmm… pleasant enough, she supposed.
It was only a moment or two before he noticed she was there, and it was so cute how he paused to stare for a few seconds. She couldn't blame him, after all, here was a lovely young woman, standing in the middle of nowhere, dressed in a fine gown and standing next to a fine black chariot, with no apparent means of getting it there.
It would look a little odd.
"A coin for your goat, boy."
He gave both her and the goat and odd look before he understood. "He… he's a bit small to be pulling your cart, if that's what you're wanting him for."
Misa let her lips turn down into an attractive frown, taking a few steps forward. "Yes, I do believe you're right." Raising a finger, she quickly touched it to the middle o f his forehead, laughing in delight as he disappeared into a puff of green smoke. Only to leave a sweet faced, black goat behind.
God, it was good to have her magic back! She held her young hand up, admiring the delicate shape and firm, glowing skin.
Only to shriek in horror as liver spots blossomed out of nowhere, marring the image. Her eyes grew cold. She needed to find that star.
Pausing to retrieve them from a pocket, the white ruins clattered at she threw them into the air.
B felt his face contort into a vicious snarl as he dismounted, striding forward a few steps. Only to be blocked by the vast blue expanse of ocean before him. Lifting a fist, he smashed it into the large, luminescent chunk of ice next to him, beached on the sand by the flow of the tide.
"West, you said what I seek lied in the West, so West we went. What would you suggest we do now, soothe-seer, swim?"
"I am only relaying to you what the ruins have told me, my lord, I can do no more."
B turned abruptly, fixing an angry red stare on the blonde woman. What a joke, this Halle Lidner. Dressed up in ridiculous white robes, the so-called soothe-seer shivered, though she did not turn away from his gaze. He pursed his lips, thinking for a few moments before addressing the woman once more.
"Ruins, you=2 0say?"
"Supernatural tools used for divination." She explained. She held them up, so he could see the small, smooth white pieces. Well, almost smooth. One side of each was blank, and the other had a series of hatch marks across it's surface. "It is said they are the bones of the Shinigami Rem, partner of one of the three royal Kira. They were all she left at her passing, aside from dust. These ruins were acquired in the last Kira War, and have been passed down through the generations of soothe-seers until myself."
"I see…" B nodded, plan formed. "Then I don't suppose you would mind answering a few questions, hm?" He gestured at the ice next to him, bidding her to toss the ruins into a bowl shaped indent at the top.
"Very well, my lord."
"First question. Am I B, prince of the kingdom of Stormhold?"
She tossed the ruins down. They all landed with the hatch marks facing up. "Yes."
"Is red my favorite color?"
She threw them again. All hatch marks up. She smiled in triumph. "Yes."
Interesting. "Has any amount of begging or pleading ever convinced me to spare the life of a traitor?"
Her smile abruptly fell. She threw the ruins.
All smooth sides up.
He had already guessed, but he had to know. "What does that mean?"
Her lips pursed. "No."
"Good. Now I have one last question. Oh!" He held his hand out, pausing her abrupt tossing motion. "But throw hem high this time."
She looked at him narrowly, before tossing them high in the air, above their heads. B waited just a moment as they reached the top of their flight.
"Do you work for my brother?"
The ruins landed, all eyes upon them.
All hatch marks up.
He allowed a smirk to stretch his lips as she looked up into his eyes, her own showing a moment of fear. Only a moment though, before he drew his sword and plunged it through her chest. None of his men protested as they watched the woman fall to the ground, dying. They knew the fate of any who dared betray him.
He stretched one hand out, picking up the ruins from their resting place.
"Alright then. West is out. Should I continue North?"
He threw them into the air.
Raito was cold, and hungry, and just miserable in general at the moment. He had accepted that the whole bizarre situation wasn't a dream around the time he got snuffled by some sort of wild pig. If that wasn't a wake-up call worthy of a heart attack, he didn't know what was.
But really, he thought, gazing into what should have been his spot in the sky, could he really be blamed for hoping? He was a star for God's sake, he belonged in the sky! Not down here…
Wherever here was, anyway. He frowned, shifting, his face contorting into a grimace as his leg gave an angry twinge. He hadn't noticed before, probably still in a bit of shock over the whole falling from the heavens thing, but his leg was injured. It wasn't terribly serious, just a shallow cut, but it was long and painful. As if the situation weren't bad enough.
His only warning was a flicker of gold light out of the corner of one eyes before he found his already battered form barreled over by said light. Flying back a few yards, he found himself on his back, the golden light gone, and a rather strange looking man seated on his stomach.
Large black eyes blinked down at him in surprise, the mouth gaping open in what seemed to be a loss for words. How attractive.
"GET OFF ME!" He yelled, his hand slapping the man across his stupid, blank face when he didn't manage the feat in less than a second. Raito wanted up, and he wanted up now.
The man lurched back, falling on his rear in an ungraceful heap, freezing as though stunned. He shook his head a few moments later, however, turning his he ad to look around. His eyes widened and he was on his feet, moving away, seemingly fascinated with the landscape. Raito gave him one last, venomous glare before turning his back, trying to ignore the man's existence. After all, he had more important things to worry about. How to get back into the sky, for one.
"Um, excuse me?"
Raito grit his teeth, turning around. "What do you want?"
The man returned his dark look innocently. "I was just wondering, have you seen a star anywhere? We're in the crater where it fell, so it can't be far from here."
What the hell kind of question was that? What kind of idiot was this man anyway? "Yeah, actually, the star did fall here. Or, if you want to be really specific, it fell over there, because while it was hanging in the sky, minding it's own business, it got hit by this weird bloody notebook, sending it careening to the Earth! And if you want to be even more specific, the star moved from where it fell to right about there, where just a minute ago it was suddenly hit by a magical flying moron!"
There was an awkward pause.
"So… you're the star then?"
Raito gave up.
Ryuuzaki wasn't really sure what he had been expecting. Actually, scratch tha t, he knew exactly what he had been expecting; a huge lump of metallic space junk.
Certainly not… this.
This being a gorgeous young man, dressed entirely in pristine white with a definite glow about his golden features.
Not to mention a tongue that would put most snakes to shame, he thought ruefully.
But then… this was really the star? That… complicated things a bit. It was one thing to pick up a piece of space junk and take it back with him, but now he was dealing with an actual person - star - er, celestial being. He supposed he shouldn't be surprised, after all, things obviously didn't work the same in this world. What with the weird market place, and then the woman on the enchanted chain, and then the candle…
Hold up. Enchanted chain. Which looked suspiciously like the small strand of metal he himself had been left with at birth. He dug it out of his pocket, pulling it out and examining it carefully. Maybe it was because he was on the other side of the wall, but it definitely had a shimmer to it he hadn't noticed before. He pulled his hands apart, observing intently as the chain lengthened in his hand.
It took him about two seconds to decide what to do with it.
He moved quickly, looping one end of the chain around the bo- star's wrist, watching as the chain fused into one smooth cord once more.
"What the hell are you doing!?" The star's eyes were wide with panic, as he jerked and pulled at the chain, trying desperately to free himself.
"Unless I am mistaken…" Ryuuzaki spoke lowly, keeping a firm hold on his end of the chain. "This means you have to come with me."
The heart of a fallen star was a great temptation in itself for any mortal that walked the land of Stormhold. But none savored them more then the black sheep of the land, those beings that belonged to the deadly order of the Kira.
All of them powerful in their own right, they were known for their dark magic and cruel methods. The order had originally gained their power through an alliance with the Shinigami, the Gods of Death, though said companions had been returned to their own realm long ago. Their favorite weapon was their Shinigami eyes, with which they could learn the name of anyone they laid eyes upon. And names were power, in Stormhold. The only power they needed to work their unholy magic.
But not their greatest weapon. No, the Deathnote, which had allowed them to kill with a simple written name, that was their most coveted arsenal. However, all the notebooks had been burnt in the last Kira war, as far as most knew, so they were left without their prized and murderous tool.
They were the longest lived beings in the whole kingdom, said to be immune to natural death since they had touched it many times before. However, though they were long lived, they could not hold off the passing of time. Youth slipped between their fingers no matter what spells they used in an attempt to thwart it, robbing them of their looks and health.
The only know substance that could return their youth and vanity was the heart of a contented star.
It is easy to see how the prize of both a star and a notebook would draw many. With neither prize aware of their value, their peril, or the danger they both presented to the kingdom of Stormhold itself.
A/N: Wow. Sorry, I know how long it took for me to get this out, and after a promised a lot of updates too. Probably won't do that again, since I made a great fat liar out of myself didn't I?
I beg forgiveness and blame it entirely on my first few weeks of college. Loaded down with two essays, homework every night, and a ten minute speech is not very conductive for free time to write in. Excuses, yes, I know, but come on. I'm dead tired, show a little mercy. Anyway, this is me NOT promising anything soon. I've learned my lesson.
As always, big shout-out to my beta Nilahxapiel for being patient with me.
Reviews are like food to a starving college student, but not demanded. Later.