AN: ok, i just decided out of the blue to create a sequel, and i have a great many thank for ekp95m for agreeing to be my beta. without her, there would have been so many mistakes and irregularities.
Also, it seems that i added a hint of shonen-ai. you can take it as that, or as close friendship, as i had initially intended. it's up to you.
Hiei sat on the roof of Genkai's temple. It had only been a week since he'd been critically wounded in battle, and he was still in the process of regaining his strength. Somehow, Yukina had managed to worm a promise out of him making sure that he wouldn't overexert himself. A small smirk tugged at his lips. If he didn't know any better, he'd swear that Kurama had had a hand in that. Although, knowing the fox the way he did, it wouldn't surprise him if he had.
Still, he really didn't need to promise any such thing. Despite the fact that the wound was healed, it still twinged every so often, so he couldn't really do much.
He cringed slightly. Genkai had been griping about the fact that he was "lazing about doing nothing," even though she knew that he was still recovering. Even for a human, the old woman could be fairly demonic in her demands, and at the moment Hiei didn't exactly feel up to fighting her. Besides, he was still trying to figure out Kurama.
Hiei frowned. Even though Kurama had told him that he hadn't wanted Hiei to die and had even entered Hiei's mind to shield him from the pain, he couldn't, for the life of him, figure out why. Why had Kurama risked his own life just to save his, the life of the Forbidden Child's? It didn't make any sense. Cast away by his own people and raised by bandits, Hiei had lived by his own code from basically his birth. He relied on no one but himself. Friends and comrades were for the weak. And yet…
Here he was, comrade not only to a demon and a half-demon, but a human as well. And they all treated him like a friend. To cover his confusion, he'd always put up the front of an uncaring, cold-hearted loner, just so that no one would know how much being part of a team unbalanced him. But Kurama, and even Yusuke to some degree, seemed to be able to sense his true reasons, and would often go out of their way to include him in some of their activities when they weren't being sent on missions.
He looked down when he heard voices to see the two he'd just been thinking about. His lips curled into a small smirk. 'Hn. Speak of the devils.' He remained where he was to see what they wanted, although he had a fair idea. The two of them had been visiting frequently to check up on his progress, Kurama visited everyday and Yusuke almost as much. Both of them had been hovering like anxious mother-hens, although Kurama wasn't quite so obvious about it. If it weren't so annoying, Hiei might have actually been amused.
Kurama suddenly looked straight at him, almost as if he knew that Hiei was watching them. Then again, given the strange bond between them that seemed to have cropped up during the last week, it didn't surprise Hiei at all.
He saw Kurama give him a small smile, before turning back to Yusuke. Sighing, Hiei leaned back against the roof tiles and closed his eyes, trying to gather himself before they came up to see him. Moments later, both of his visitors jumped up onto the roof beside him.
Deciding to give off a nonchalant air, Hiei opened one eye and peered at them. "So, come to waste time again Detective?" Hiei still thought of Yusuke as the Spirit World Investigator, and continued to call him by that title.
Yusuke refused to be annoyed. In fact, he looked downright chipper. "I guess you could say that." He exchanged a look with Kurama, a sort of we-know-something-that's-going-to-happen-and-it-should-be-amusing look. Kurama had a gleam in his eyes that he only got when he knew something that his opponents didn't, something that would be downright embarrassing to at least one person involved. That was always a cause for worry since Kurama had an innate mischievous streak that would pop up at the most inopportune times, targeting his friends if there was no actual opponent to be fought.
Hiei sat up, partially to be ready to defend himself, and partially because he couldn't help but be a little curious. He narrowed his eyes, trying to discern what they could be up to. He didn't want to have to resort to the Jagan just yet. Besides, Kurama would be able to tell instantly and would likely be rather upset with him. "And just what does that mean?" He asked slowly.
Yusuke grinned brightly at him. "Well, Grandma says that you're almost fully healed, so we've planned something that should definitely cheer you up."
Hiei blinked, before moving his gaze over to Kurama, hoping to get some clarification. To his dismay, Kurama just looked at him with a slightly amused smile. Obviously he would have to wait to find out what the two of them were planning, something that didn't exactly fill him with enthusiasm.
Kurama reached up and moved his hair behind his ear when an errant breeze blew it into his face. "Don't worry, Hiei. It's not anything too bad. I've personally made sure of that." He reached down and grabbed Hiei's wrist, pulling him up. Moving his hand to the smaller demon's shoulder, he leaned down to speak quietly. "Yusuke and I have been planning this ever since you started recovering. And he's right, you know. It will probably make you feel better about that whole mission. In fact, I can personally guarantee that it will."
Hiei glanced at the position of Kurama's hand, but didn't try and dislodge it. Although it felt a little strange, he couldn't deny the fact that it was comforting. And after everything that Kurama went through to help him, he wasn't really worried about Kurama attempting anything sinister. Annoying and embarrassing, yes, but nothing that would cause him any real pain. At least, he hoped so.
A small shiver ran down his spine. Mentally shaking his head, he shrugged, although not hard enough to remove Kurama's hand. "Hn. Whatever, let's just go."
Yusuke had narrowed his eyes at him when Kurama had put his hand on Hiei's shoulder and had frowned when the fire demon hadn't tried to squirm away. "Hey, you ok man? You're acting kinda weird. Weirder than normal that is." He cringed instinctively when crimson eyes turned to glare at him, before realizing that the "glare" was half-hearted at best. Blinking, he turned a questioning glance at Kurama, before paling. Kurama's normally green eyes were slightly golden, giving off the glare that Hiei seemed incapable of at the moment.
Seeing as how he hadn't seen Kurama's eyes do that since Hiei had nearly died, he decided to leave off and instead turned his attention towards getting their little expedition going. Coughing to clear his throat, he turned and started off. "Well, let's get going already. We're wasting valuable time." He jumped off the roof to the ground before starting off, knowing that the other two would easily be able to catch up.
Hiei exchanged a look with Kurama, before they jumped down after him. Although Hiei landed softly like he always did, he stumbled slightly when the impact, however light, jarred his wound. Immediately, his hand drifted to cover the scar, trying to ease the pain when a hand lit on his shoulder again. His crimson eyes shot up to meet concerned emerald eyes.
Kurama frowned lightly. "Is your wound bothering you?" If it was, their plan might have to wait. He wasn't about to risk Hiei's health, even for this.
Hiei scowled, forcefully pushing Kurama's hand away irritably. "It's fine." He said shortly, before turning and stalking off after Yusuke.
Kurama watched him walk away, before following behind, determined to keep an eye on his young friend. Hiei's eyes had taken on a brief shadow of pain just now, and the fox wanted to make sure that Hiei didn't over-do it. The fire demon wasn't exactly known for being cautious, especially in front of his friends. He hated appearing weak, and would force himself to not even wince until he was alone. The only time he'd ever shown anything in front of the others was during the Dark Tournament, when he'd passed out after fighting Bui.
Not seeing any other sign of pain or weariness from Hiei, he sped up to walk beside him. No words were needed between the two long-time partners. Kurama was well-aware that Hiei was intensely curious about what he and Yusuke had planned for today, and Hiei knew that Kurama wasn't about to tell him anything until they arrived. Hiei also knew that he couldn't read Kurama's mind without the fox being able to shield against him, and if he read Yusuke's mind… well, he probably wouldn't be too thrilled with what he might find there.
The three of them walked in silence for about twenty minutes, before coming to a stop in front of an alleyway. Hiei blinked, before cautiously looking around. Not seeing anything out of the ordinary, he turned to see Yusuke looking at his watch in annoyance.
"Man, I thought we agreed on the time." He turned to Kurama, scowling. "Where the heck is she?"
Hiei raised an eyebrow. 'She? So we're waiting for a girl?' He quickly ran through the names of all the females that he knew. 'It's not Yukina, or we wouldn't have left the temple. It can't be Yusuke's woman; he knows I can't stand her. Same with the moron's sister, she's even worse. So the only one left is…the ferry girl.' He frowned. He wasn't exactly eager to see that foolish female again. She was too…bouncy for his tastes.
Kurama was also frowning. "I'm sure that she'll be here, Yusuke. She's not one to break a promise, especially after we told her what happened."
At this, Hiei whirled in his partner. "You what?" He hissed, almost visibly bristling. "You told that ferry girl what happened?"
Kurama glanced at him, before turning his gaze back to the sky. "Don't panic so much, Hiei. We didn't tell her any details, just that Koenma tried to refuse to open up a portal for us after you were injured." He shook his head. "I'll tell you what we told her later, otherwise it'll give away the surprise."
Hiei growled softly, before crossing his arms and leaning against the wall. Or rather, what should have been a wall. He was significantly startled when the wall gave way behind him and he fell backwards, too caught off-guard to do anything other than yelp in surprise.
Kurama and Yusuke whirled around at the sound of his yelp, only to be stunned by the sight of him disappearing into the wall, a small ripple across the surface the only indication that there was a portal there. Racing over and poking his head through, Yusuke saw Hiei sitting on the ground, slightly stunned. Looking around, he saw one of the many halls of the Spirit World.
Grinning, he waved Kurama through and they walked into the other realm. Hiei had picked himself up off the ground, glaring at them as if it were their fault. Yusuke shrugged. "Hey man, it's not like I knew that the portal was already active." He really hadn't, actually. He'd been expecting Botan to either come down from the sky, or to suddenly appear from behind like usual.
Kurama shook his head. "Well, this certainly is a surprise." He'd found a note from Botan. "Apparently she got a sudden job and couldn't make it in time." He was speaking to Yusuke, since Hiei wouldn't know what he was talking about. "She attuned the portal to our auras, and left it active. A fairly smart move on her part." He pocketed the note. "It also says that it'll last for the full day."
Yusuke grinned. "More than enough time to have some fun."
Hiei was fed-up with being in the dark. "Alright, that's it. If the two of you don't want me to rip you to shreds, you'd better start giving me answers." He snarled. "What exactly are we doing here if there's no mission?"
Kurama and Yusuke looked at each other, appearing to have a debate with their eyes. Finally, Kurama turned to Hiei. "We were talking the other day about how Koenma must have trapped you into doing that bogus mission, and how we knew you must have been itching for revenge."
Hiei blinked. It wasn't what he'd been expecting, but it still sounded good. So far, that is. "And just how were you planning to go about this? I doubt the rest of the Spirit World will just sit by while I let out my…irritation." Irritation was a fair understatement, but he didn't want to let them know just how aggravated he still was at being played by the brat.
Yusuke just grinned. "Oh, don't worry about the rest of the Spirit World. Kurama and I have told them that if they come around in the next few hours, they'll have to deal with us." He didn't need to elaborate.
Kurama nodded. "Besides, even though you can't really harm him physically, there are plenty of other things that you could do."
Hiei raised an eyebrow. "Oh? Do tell." His voice was still fairly level, but to anyone who knew him at all, they would be able to hear a faint undertone of eagerness.
Kurama grinned. "You have the Jagan, Hiei. I'm sure that there are several things that Koenma has done that he'd prefer remained unknown." His grin turned devious, fairly reminiscent of Yoko Kurama, and he shrugged carelessly. "You could always… reveal a few of those incidents."
Hiei was silent for a moment, before a dark grin took over. He liked that idea. He liked it a lot. "Hn. I think that for once you may be right. This may be just what I need." His mind was already whirling with ideas of how he could pursue whatever he found to torment the toddler. He didn't even notice when Yusuke and Kurama began to lead him to Koenma's office. He did notice, however, when they came to a stop outside the door in question.
Glancing up, he was surprised to see certain wards placed around the door. That in itself wasn't terribly surprising, but the fact that the wards were directed towards keeping noise inside the room was what caught Hiei's attention. A quick look at his cohorts revealed that they had either put them up or knew who had.
Kurama and Yusuke turned at him, before waving him ahead. "Have fun." Yusuke said, grinning wide enough to show his fangs.
Kurama winked. "Try not to traumatize him too much, Hiei."
Hiei almost snorted. "Hn. Don't tempt me." He walked in to find a rather amusing sight.
Koenma was sitting at his desk, but it was the fact that he was tied up by several of Kurama's plants that made Hiei chuckle darkly.
Closing the door, he turned to his victim, pulling off his headband over his Jagan. Oh yes, he was definitely going to enjoy this.
AN: so how was it? please R&R!