A/N: The seed for this shot was planted some months back, after a conversation over the concept with SPS-kun and aelio. It came to fruition a few days ago, and after a few polishings this is what we have. Credit should also be given to BondageInc; the image at the end of this shot was adapted from a scene in her fic "Interphase."
It's my first time really portraying either of these characters, not to mention the relationship between them, so any and all feedback, criticism included, is most welcome.
Summary: Amidst darkness and destruction, a surprising, and undesirable, fertility.
Warnings: yaoi, mpreg, abuse, death.
March 15, 2009
Yaminade were an old species. With old age comes forgetfulness and disease. Itsuki's body forgot its sex: its affliction was, astonishingly, unpleasantly, pregnancy.
Minoru chastised Itsuki for his carelessness, for "allowing" himself to get in this way. Kazuya accused him of doing so deliberately, and tried on more than one occasion to provoke a miscarriage. Abortions had previously been attempted on Itsuki's part; the fetus already showed its parents' resilience. When he did cave into its odd tastes, Itsuki could persuade Makoto to indulge him. Naru alternated between fascination: sometimes waking Itsuki late at night while feeling the movements under the growing swell in his middle; and jealousy: throwing the tantrums typical of the "older child" at times—such as when his stomach threw its own tantrums—when his attention was diverted away from her.
Shinobu's thoughts were mixed. "A fusion of demon and human," he might muse some evening, over dinner or while watching TV, pressing a hand against the hardness of Itsuki's stomach. Other times: "It's human," he'd mutter distastefully, "it's tainted…," or, "In a world of destruction, there shouldn't be procreation…" But most frequently: "How did you…?"
In a low voice, lower when he didn't feel well, Itsuki would reply, "I'm as taken aback as you, Shinobu. It wasn't intentional." This he'd say louder, firmer, in case other personalities were listening.
Once after such an exchange, he blanched, and held a hand over his mouth, and had to be helped to the bathroom. "It's a parasite," Shinobu decided, leaning against the sink, arms crossed, while Itsuki puked. "It's too human."
"…Perhaps," the demon gasped, wiping his mouth. Shinobu had tied his hair back so it wouldn't get dirty.
Certainly they were in agreement over the matter of "parasite." Sick wasn't a status he enjoyed. Nothing (almost) about this was enjoyable. He'd been sick more this term than he had his entire life. He might have eaten more in the past months than his lifespan, too. Yaminade usually ate irregularly (what an amusing paradox); and lately he did so frequently, constantly. The cockroaches must have felt robbed by his late night occupations of the kitchen.
All this made him feel like a human, disgusting, and falling short in Sensui's eyes.
But if it was Shinobu, he would stay with Itsuki, in sickness and in gluttony, and help him clean up, and then to bed. Where, sometimes, they enjoyed the one side effect of this phenomenon that didn't make either of them cringe. Anything Shinobu wanted to do, Itsuki had already assumed the position, even once his figure had grown bloated and awkward, though by then both parties' enthusiasm was usually tempered by revulsion.
Itsuki liked to think, though it couldn't be imagined that he cared, that it was Shinobu he'd been with when the thing inside him was concocted.
Shinobu wasn't there when he was gripped by a pain that paralyzed, and a portal unlike his usual began to open up.
"Get into the bathroom," Minoru told him clinically. "We don't need a great stain on the carpet." He didn't help Itsuki as the demon adhered, hunched over and stumbling along the hall. He did toss him an old towel, for cleaning up the impending mess.
Itsuki found another reason to detest his current mess when a pain ripped him open and made him slam up against the wall and scream.
"In pain shall you bear children," Minoru quoted from the doorway (1).
Sometime after he managed to climb into the bathtub (less mess, and there was a shower bar he could grip), Minoru grew bored and Naru took his place. Itsuki hoped that being the female personality, she might be able to provide some sort of assistance, or at least comfort. (This was what he'd been reduced to, he who comforted Sensui without, usually, any expectation of reciprocation.) Instead, his distress, though he'd managed not to yell a whole lot, made her burst into tears, too hysterical to fulfill, or even hear, his hoarse request for something cold to drink.
After Naru came Kazuya. Itsuki was already wiping away tears as well as sweat by then. Knocking the yaminade out of his squatting position onto his ass, the sadistic personality grabbed him up by his hair and crushed the gun against his jaw, yelling at him that this scene of his was upsetting Naru and Shinobu. Against his will Itsuki let out a shriek (the portal was thick, something was in it); Kazuya reacted by crushing the gun into his jaw.
Maybe that was a mercy: he blacked out.
When he came around, the first thing he saw, after bedsheets, was a glass of ice-water on the bedside table. Experimentally, gritting his teeth, he moved toward it and sipped a little. His face hurt, but his jaw wasn't broken.
He'd been stripped naked, and perhaps bathed, since he didn't feel sticky. That portal was still present, and smarting. His chest ached.
Something cold was pressed to his face and made him flinch. "I'm sorry for what Kazuya did," Shinobu told him, taking his hand and placing it to hold the bag of frozen vegetables.
He made himself sit up, adjusted the bag's contact against his flesh so that it didn't sting. "It's okay," he said, slowly because it hurt, and after a moment's deliberation added, "I don't remember giving birth."
"A few hours ago."
He looked for the time, found it on the wall. In an hour the typical humans would be going to their jobs and to their schools. Hopefully nobody had heard his screams last night, though it wouldn't have been the first time he disturbed some neighbor's sleep. Kazuya might have established an immunity in their ears by now, anyway. "What is it?" he asked softly, expectantly.
"It doesn't matter what it was," Shinobu dismissed. Suspicions confirmed.
Suddenly he was aware that his chest was leaking, and ignored it. Shinobu was aware too, judging from the expression that he could not or did not disguise. "It defiled you," he said, handing Itsuki a towel that the demon knew was for his chest. "Like humans defile demons."
"Yes," Itsuki murmured, wrapping the towel around his torso. First question answered, now: "Where is it?"
"I'll take care of it," Shinobu replied.
Itsuki did something out of the ordinary. "Let me," he dissented. "Anyone who found it would be too simple to understand why."
No protest. "Stay in bed," his companion cautioned. "I can bring you whatever you'd like to eat."
"I'm not hungry." Just tired. He rested back against the pillows, and waited until he thought Shinobu was finished before shutting his eyes.
Thought. He felt the vegetable bag being adjusted against his face. "I am sorry for what Kazuya did," Shinobu repeated.
Footsteps. A door shut. A television turned on. Itsuki didn't open his eyes.
A day and a half passed, and Itsuki was able to get out of bed unassisted. "Where is it?" he asked, Minoru this time.
"I don't know whether you're concerned about incrimination," the orator said in a bored voice, eyes never leaving the television screen, "or you've succumbed to some hormonal sentimentality. It's in the freezer. And Itsuki, I'm sure that if not further inconveniencing us isn't motivation enough, I highly doubt that the brand of pain you were in the other night resonates with your usual tastes. This doesn't happen again. Understand?"
More than Minoru could even fathom. The cockroaches ran for cover as Itsuki turned on the light and went to the freezer.
It was wrapped in plastic. Itsuki removed this, and examined the thing he'd carried inside him for the past near-year. He wondered if its eyes were blue because it was newborn, or if they would have stayed that way like Sensui's, but then it didn't really matter.
When he'd finished looking at it he covered it back up, in a clean towel this time, and held it against him while he summoned his hands and a small portal. His chest ached.
He wasn't sure whether Kazuya or Shinobu killed it. But then it didn't really matter.
"It's closing up," Shinobu said. He was looking between Itsuki's legs.
The yaminade nodded. He straddled a mirror earlier, feeling foolish, but horrified enough by the recent thought that the portal in his body, which didn't appeal to Sensui and made him uncomfortable, might stay open. "I'm glad it did not long-term damage," he replied, referring to the other "it."
"That thing was only half-human," Shinobu said. "Thankfully. It could have been far more destructive." He stroked Itsuki's face, which was swiftly healing. Kazuya hadn't been out since the birth. "They would steal away your strength for their own, like the infant snakes that can't control their poison. Human greed incarnate." Tilting Itsuki's chin up, he said, "They can't damage you. I need you."
It didn't hurt when the demon smiled suggestively. "Nothing will damage me. It won't happen again." He'd taken precautions to ensure that.
Shinobu moved his hand from Itsuki's face to his chest, still sensitive and sore and, occasionally, still leaking. Not now, fortunately. Itsuki uttered a low moan, and replying "I need you, too," spread his legs, tossed back his head and let out a pleasured cry as he felt something thick, something coming in.
When they'd finished, both lay beside, atop, beneath each other a while. And then Shinobu pulled himself free, and pulled the covers over Itsuki, who lied still. Soon after, a television could be heard in the adjoining room.
Itsuki continued to lie in bed, sore again, but in a more pleasant way. He drifted off, and dreamt of a dark child with dark (black or teal?) hair and golden (or were they still blue?) eyes, wreathed by a half dozen arms (none of which bore the barrel of a gun).
It would sleep in quietude.
1: Genesis 3:16
Again, any comments/criticism at all if it suits you.
3/16/09: Proof that criticism helps: I believe that a certain burn-victim from another fandom got into my head when I first started working on this, and left his imprint in a single but highly noticeable mistake: Makoto, as pointed out to my by SPS-kun, is the cook personality, not the orator, which is Minoru. Minoru has been given back his name and the real Makoto has been given his own sentence. My apologies for the I-can't-believe-I-did-that error.