Roasting on an Open Fire

S J Smith

Rating: Teen…ish?

Summary: Hakkai can't take it any more.

Disclaimer: Trust me, I can barely spell bishounen, much less draw them.

Dedicated to Mjules, who wanted…well, this story.

It had been too long of a day. Far, far too long. The rain that had struck shortly after they left that last town in the morning hadn't been hard enough to seek shelter but just hard enough to soak everything. Goku had eaten something that made him develop gas - and Gojyo complained about it even after Sanzo shot at him. Twice. Goku was miserable enough, clutching his stomach and making sounds appropriately obnoxious enough to go with the smells, though he wasn't actually dying - Hakkai wasn't sure if there was a way to kill Goku, really - so Sanzo insisted they keep driving.

By the time they outpaced the rain, everyone's tempers were frayed almost to the point of snapping (Hakkai was sure they'd already snapped and had considered letting his own inner demon come out to play, too, but refrained. Someone in this group had to have good manners.)

The cave wasn't much but at least it remained dry from the soaking the rest of the land received. It had obviously been used by travelers in the past, based on the stockpile of wood and a badly scrawled note on the wall with the word, "spring" and an arrow pointing. Fortunately, Goku's gastric distress had dissipated along with the rain, otherwise Hakkai thought the boy would've been tossed outside to face the night alone.

It took some time and far too much grousing and threats from the fan and the pistol before everyone was mostly settled for the rest of the night. Suggestions of poker and mah jongg were shot down as rapidly as Goku's suggestions of a game of charades. When Sanzo threatened to fill Gojyo full of holes, Hakkai stood up, showed all his teeth in the most polite smile he could, and said, "Enough. You are all acting like children. And as such, you're to be punished."

"What?" Goku's eyes went round.

Sanzo sneered. "You can't be serious."

Gojyo smirked. "What do you have in mind?"

Hakkai shot them a glare. "Each of you go outside and get a green switch." When they hesitated, he barked, "Now!" taking secret glee in the fact they scattered.

While they were outside, Hakkai went to his pack, pulling out his secret weapon to fight the gloom - a bag of puffed marshmallows. Somehow, he thought the night might turn out to be okay.