How would Tyki the vampire hunter meet Kanda the pureblood vampire? Let's find out, shall we?
Oh and a note, this story will get really bloody, and maybe quite violent and graphic. I'll place a warning ahead of the chapters, but mind you, it's not for the faint-hearted. Warnings for this chapter? Mmm… Blood during fights? And Kanda's cursing.
Disclaimer: I don't own DGM. I wish I could save it now…
Chapter 2 – Chance Encounters
Tyki frowned as he got off the train. He had been sent to quite a foreign place for a scouting mission due to rumors of a vampire and reading maps really wasn't his strong point. But a mission was still a mission and he could only try and navigate his way around here. Or better still; seduce information out of some unsuspecting woman.
He started to walk, holding the map this way and that, hoping he could make a head or tail of all the weird directions. Was he supposed to go this way, or that? Tyki frowned harder. He wished he had worked harder at school during geographical lessons. He was so absorbed in the map that he just happened to bump into someone in front, knocking the person over.
"Oh my, I'm terribly sorry!" Tyki apologized as he bent down to help the person up. Grumbling to himself, the other man groaned as he stood up from a puddle of water.
"Damn it, my clothes are ruined." The teen muttered.
He was a tall young man, not as tall as Tyki himself, with long black hair swept up in a ponytail. His features were that of a foreigner, and he had extremely fair complexion. He raised his dark eyes to glare at Tyki and then ask.
"Don't you have eyes? Why don't you watch where you're going?"
From the second the stranger had addressed him, Tyki was certain that he too, was unfamiliar with his surroundings. For one thing, he was looking at Tyki with some kind of puzzled look amidst his fury and for another; no one from around here would be walking around during these times with a sword strung at his hip so casually. Tyki could only assume he was a lost Asian who had come from another country to find work.
Tyki took off his hat and apologized again. "I'm truly sorry, I was too immersed in finding my way around here I knocked you over by accident. Could I pay for the damage I caused?"
"Never mind. It'll dry on its own anyway."
Tyki took a step forward. "I insist. As a gentleman, it's very bad to not compensate for one's wrongdoing."
The other man's eyes narrowed. "I don't want your money."
"But I have to do something! I mean, I knocked you over and all!" Tyki explained in exasperation.
"Look, I said it's fine."
A moment of awkward silence passed between them in which there was much glaring at each other. Then Tyki smiled.
"How about I treat you to lunch?"
The young man's jaw dropped and he closed it again. He momentarily averted his gaze as he pondered Tyki's suggestion.
Truth be told, the idea was very appealing to Kanda. Even though he was a vampire, he had always been fascinated by humans. There was something about them that seemed to draw his attention and pique his interest. Other vampires, pure-blood or not, would deem him a weirdo if they knew about his secret obsession with the way humans lived but Kanda couldn't help it. Somehow, he would very much enjoy just having a normal lunch with a normal human and feel what it was like to be a normal human.
On the plus side, he didn't want this strange man on his heels, chasing him down to insist on compensation and buying him stuff, so why not take the offer, get free lunch, and shake off this man altogether? It would be so much easier for him to complete his mission then.
So it was with a slightly flushed expression that Kanda turned back to look at Tyki and reply.
"Fine, if you insist."
"I do, alright." Tyki smiled courteously and indicated that Kanda follow him.
As they started down the street, Kanda berated himself silently. It was still a very sudden decision to make, whatever his reasons had been. He was supposed to be investigating the whereabouts of the vampire hunter and here he was following another stranger to lunch, and all because he had an embarrassing fetish about humans. But anything was better than having this strange man follow him around saying that he needed to compensate for damages done. The sooner he got him off his back, the better.
"Are you from around here?"
The sudden question made Kanda look up. "Uh, no."
Tyki smiled warmly. "Neither am I. This isn't working out for me, I'm as lost as you are."
"Che… I am not lost." Kanda denied and looked away flushing with embarrassment. The last thing he wanted now was for this man to begin offering help in aiding him to find his way. He was on a personal mission, and having a complete stranger tag along while he hunted down the vampire hunter would be very much annoying. Not to mention it would be difficult to explain the situation.
Tyki brought him to a small dining parlor that was elaborately decorated, complete with an air of sophisticated class. He silently congratulated himself on being able to locate this diner while still being hopelessly unable to read maps. To the vampire's unease, he seemed rather at home to all this but Kanda took his seat uncomfortably and fidgeted with his sword. Unsure of what to do next, he picked up the large card with human writings on it and opened the pages.
The names on the menu were foreign to him, and suddenly, accepting the offer for lunch wasn't such a good idea after all.
"What would you like?" Tyki stopped short as he noticed the young man's discomfort. How could he not notice? Since the other man was obviously either a foreigner or an illiterate person, ordering from a menu would be quite a challenge if he could not even read the language. "Um, what say I order for the both of us?" Tyki suggested.
Kanda nodded dumbly and glanced at the people around him warily, including the unfortunate waiter who collected the menu from him in fear. Tyki eyed him with interest. Something about this young man attracted him, and Tyki just felt himself drawn to this mysterious stranger by an unknown force. He conveyed his orders to the waiter and then settled to observing Kanda.
"Say, we haven't introduced ourselves yet, have we? My name's Tyki Mikk, and yours?"
The black-haired man glared at him from the corners of his eyes before answering briefly. "Kanda Yuu."
He didn't seem to keen on striking a conversation so Tyki decided to press him further. Just for the fun of it. "So what business are you here for?"
Kanda was getting rather annoyed. Bad choice of a lunch partner. This human was rather irritating and could not mind his own business. What could he tell him? That he was a pureblood vampire out hunting for a vampire hunter to put him out of business?
"I'm looking for a job." He lied, avoiding Tyki's gaze for two reasons. One, because he wasn't very good at lying and two, because he was nevertheless still a vampire, and could as easily seduce a mere human with his eyes if he wanted to. Not that he wanted to seduce a man right now but still… Better not take risks, right? Actually, reason number three would be that this man was scarily keen on him and Kanda just felt extremely uncomfortable gazing into his amber eyes.
"And you're all alone out here?"
Damn it, yes, he was alone. He had been alone since his early years of life and should he add, he was single and available too? This guy was more irritating than the bean sprout! This idiot seriously didn't possess eyes either, or else he wouldn't have run over him in the first place and he would have obviously noticed that Kanda was travelling by himself. Kanda groaned inwardly. Curse his luck…
"Uh, yeah. And you?" Kanda answered before mentally hitting himself.
Shit, why did he have to add the last question? Kanda felt like slapping himself for all the stupid decisions he had been making all afternoon. Tyki took it rather nicely though, probably glad that the other man was finally replying to this one-sided conversation.
"I'm here to look for a job as well. But I'm not that familiar with directions."
His instincts tingled. Kanda brought his gaze up towards Tyki for a brief moment and observed the latter. For some odd reason, Kanda felt as though he was not the only one hiding things around here.
Thankfully, their lunch arrived and Kanda stared at the plate in front of him. He wasn't really used to human food and he had never eaten anything that looked like what was on his plate right now. He lived off blood, and even though Kanda rarely drank if he could, he still hunted when he needed to, and he had on occasion, attacked humans on instinct. He had trained himself to abstain from drinking human blood for a long time now but Kanda knew that once he tasted human blood again, nothing else would ever taste as good and he would no doubt become addicted to the taste of humans again. Not that the food served now looked unappetizing but Kanda was still wary of it. Picking up the fork, he started poking the piece of whatever it was on his plate.
The older man smiled at his actions. To be honest, Tyki found him rather amusing company. He rarely interacted with people outside the Order, and if he did, it was usually women, vampire or not. He had no real friends in the Order either, everyone being either too afraid of him, extremely in awe of him or feeling murderous intent towards him, like that dumb rabbit Bookman Junior. Kanda here was a different kind of person altogether. He neither treated Tyki with respect or fear like those in the Order, nor was he being seduced by him. He didn't seem to shun his company, but neither did he seem overly interested in Tyki. It was rather soothing to just have a normal conversation with another person for once. Tyki secretly wished he would cross paths with this foreigner again someday.
"Don't you like your steak well-done?"
So this was steak, the vampire realized. Kanda had heard of it before but he never had a chance to taste it. He would prefer raw meat though, not well-done. He was looking at the food with a different view now that he knew what it was, but he still didn't know where to start.
Fingers wrapped around his hand and guided them across the plate. Startled, Kanda looked up at Tyki in confusion and the man dropped his hand immediately.
"I'm… I'm sorry, I only wanted to help you…" The older man was equally as taken aback at his actions. "You're uh… Supposed to cut it that way."
"No, it's ok. I… I was just a little caught off guard." Kanda muttered. Tyki stared at his palm. He didn't know why he just reached out to guide Kanda's hand just now.
Kanda finished his meal in silence, and not another word passed between him and Tyki. But every now and then, he would glance at his companion. For ages, humans had amazed him, and he was always fascinated with their ways. He always found it particularly appealing to try and note the similarities between vampires and humans.
It was as if deep down inside, Kanda wanted to deny his own existence as a vampire, and convince himself that he too, was human.
Finishing his meal, he got up and pushed his chair back. Tyki looked up at him. "Leaving already?"
"Yes, I don't plan on taking your time any more. Thanks for the meal." He replied abruptly as he nodded curtly at Tyki. The Portuguese man seemed to be trying to think of something to say but no words came to his head. He could only utter a simple farewell.
"It was my pleasure, do take care of yourself… Kanda."
Making his way out of the diner, Kanda walked on for a long distance in a hurried pace before he slunk into an alleyway and caught his breath.
If only the other vampires could see him now, mingling with their prey, as the Earl would undoubtedly call it. Kanda slapped his forehead. How could he have let his normally cool composure slip? That would be the last time, he told himself, that he would accept a lunch invitation from another stranger. He would not allow himself to catch his own self doing that again.
But as he made his way across the alley, a small thought occurred to Kanda. He may not have lunch with strangers anymore, but he certainly would have steak for lunch the next time he had a chance.
Night came upon the unsuspecting town like a predator would ambush its prey, creeping and silent. Most of the decent townspeople were in deep slumber by this hour, and only the denizens of the dark crawled around, dealing with their black trade or being up to no good.
The hunter stepped out into the cold night air, breathing in the chilly mist as he basked in the moonlight. Night was beautiful in a dark and mysterious way, and Tyki found that he did his best work when it was night, which was why he loved it so much. And now he would be headed off to embark on a mission he enjoyed doing best.
First, he would have to narrow down the places a vampire was most likely to strike. From what he heard about vampires, they preferred seducing their prey before draining them of their life fluids, taking advantage of man's weakness to succumb to lust. So far, Tyki had tracked down all his prey by using their tactic against them, and each encounter only served to strengthen his belief that vampires were sinful beings. They were worse than humans, and deserved to be eradicated from the surface of earth.
That said, Tyki was unfamiliar with this town, so he decided he would stake out at a few shady pubs or underworld smuggling rings and see if he could gather enough rumors about a vampire. Maybe then he would be able to set his trap soon.
As he strode off into the night, his footsteps thudding firmly on the sidewalk in a light stride, Tyki made sure he kept to the shadows. He slunk into the next alley and made his way down the most shunned parts of the town. Suddenly, some movement up ahead made him stop and hide behind a corner.
Leaning around the brick wall, Tyki could make out a few silhouettes up front. Three men were muttering in low voices, one giving orders while the other two were busy with a wagon of some sort. Tyki wondered what kind of underworld activity this was. Possibly a smuggling operation.
It was then he heard a cry as a tiny figure leapt from the wagon and tried to make a run for it, only to be caught and restrained by one of the men.
Tyki's blood froze as he realized what he had just stumbled upon. Those men weren't smugglers, they were trafficking children.
The little girl sobbed and cried as she was dragged back to the wagon and her feet tied stoutly. The leader of the three said something threatening to her and threw her roughly into the back of the wagon, amidst cowering children inside, all frightened and uncertain of the terrible fate that awaited them. They must have been either they were going to be sold off to, as slaves, laborers, or even worse, Tyki knew that the outcome was not going to be good at all.
He was just pondering his next move when he felt a shadow leap across his head on the rooftops.
One of the men noticed it too, and gave a surprised shout as he pointed to the thing on the roofs.
Tyki's eyes widened at the sight of long hair streaming in the night wind, and black cloaks whipping around an intimidating figure. There was a glint of metal, and Tyki identified it as a sword.
"Scum. All of you are not fit to be humans. You don't have a heart." The cold voice spoke.
"And who in the blazes are you?" The gang leader cried out gruffly.
He didn't answer. Whoever it was just leapt down, bringing the sword crashing upon the men and shattering some crates in the alley. Tyki could hear yells of agony and some fighting as the men tried to defend themselves, and then to his shock, the clicking sound of a pistol being cocked.
'Hey you, they've got guns!' Tyki thought wildly as he dashed out from his hiding place, ready to help with his own weapon.
The gunshots rang in the still night with a deadly echo. As the dust settled, Tyki prepared himself to find an injured swordsman but to his surprise, a different scene welcomed his eyes.
The man who had fired the gun remained in his upright position, his gun arm trembling as it held the smoking pistol. Blood ran down his chest, from which protruded a gleaming katana, and the sword's master standing behind the gangster, his fingers gripping the hilt tightly where he had stabbed the man through the chest. Tyki was amazed at how fast the stranger was able to move, not only dodging the bullets and taking position behind the slave trader but also dealing the finishing blow at the same time. His speed was inhuman.
The attacker pulled out his bloody sword with a wet and slick sound, spraying the ground and walls with dark blood. As the dead body collapsed to the ground, he lifted his free hand to his lips and for a minute, Tyki could swear he was about to lick the blood off.
It was then Tyki snapped out of his daze.
"Hey, are you alright?"
The swordsman started and looked at him in surprise. The moon came out then, from behind the clouds and under the faint moonlight, Tyki gasped as he recognized the swordsman's face.
"Oh my, it's you, Kanda!"
Kanda looked equally shocked. "What the fuck are you doing here?"
"Forgive me, I was investigating some illegal trading activities. I'm an undercover detective. you see, and I just so happened to stumble upon these slave traders when you came and dealt with them amazingly." Tyki invented a story to keep his mission a secret.
Kanda narrowed his eyes suspiciously. "I see. I didn't do a good enough job though, two of them got away. I'm going after them now." He started to turn away.
"Wait, up!" Tyki called after him. Kanda stopped, and then in a blink of an eye, he was in front of Tyki with his sword at Tyki's throat.
'That speed… He's too fast to be a normal human…' Tyki told himself.
"You said you were an undercover detective?" Kanda snarled. "So you're going to report me and get me arrested?"
Tyki raised his hands up in mock surrender. "Oh no, I wasn't going to do anything of that sort."
"Then what? Due to your moral values and sense of responsibility as part of the police force, you're going to stop me from killing the other two scum?"
"Oh God help me calm this crazed serial killer down." Tyki sighed. "Look, I'm not here to to do anything of that sort and if you hadn't shown up…" Tyki lowered his voice into a serious whisper. "I would have killed those scoundrels myself."
There was a moment's pause as Kanda glared at Tyki, as if trying to discern his sincerity in the matter, and then with a scoff, he lowered his katana and turned away.
"So you're really going after those two?"
"I am, and in the meantime, you can save these children. I'm unfamiliar with the area, and I trust you have the power or ability to grant these children refuge?" Kanda spared a glance at the frightened children huddling in the wagon.
"What, you mean I'm going to play babysitter? Hey, wait!" Tyki attempted to stop Kanda again but the other man had already run off into the darkness. Tyki rolled his eyes in frustration, then turned towards the stunned kids with a kind smile on his face.
"Come on, let's get you all somewhere safe. Although I'm sure the police are headed this way already, Kanda sure didn't bother to keep the noises down…"
A young boy tugged at his collar as Tyki lifted him down from the wagon. "The other guy, the cool one with the sword… Is he going to be okay?"
Tyki smiled at him. "Oh don't you worry. That's what I'm going to find out."
He was certain he had wounded the two men just now, so all Kanda had to do now was to track the scent of their blood. As he raced along the silent road, his thoughts wandered to the meeting at the alley just now.
It was unexpected, and unusual, to meet that man there again. His appearance only created more complications but Kanda was too fuelled with the rage to get rid of those scumbags that he couldn't be bothered to wonder why Tyki was skulking around a dark alley in the dead of night. He just had to assume for the time being that Tyki's alibi was true.
Honestly speaking, Kanda was a bit caught off his guard. If Tyki hadn't interrupted him just now, Kanda was certain, that in his state of fury and adrenaline rushing through his veins, coupled with the heavy scent of fresh blood in the air, he would have undoubtedly taken a lick of the blood staining his fingers. And then all his efforts in abstaining from blood would be gone, and Kanda knew it wouldn't have stopped at one lick; he would have drunk his fill.
The thought of drinking human blood again made him shudder. He had lost his control a few times, for all vampires found fresh human blood dangerously addictive, but Kanda resolved to try and keep himself in check. Considering his close call just now, Kanda wasn't so sure he could abstain from human blood any much longer.
The trail grew warmer; Kanda could sense them just ahead. Shaking those disturbing thoughts from his head, he charged in with his sword drawn, ready to strike again.
The men were running across the great bridge crossing a wide canal that was the life and soul of the busy town. Under the moonlight, the waters were serene and mysterious, but neither Kanda nor the men had any interest in taking a romantic stroll over the bridge right now.
He gave himself a bit more speed, and caught up with them easily, aiming a blow at the man up ahead, who swerved and rolled to the side, his companion crying out in surprise and stopping in his tracks. The one who had been knocked to his feet started to get up while cursing.
"Damn it all! You're so persistent! I'll teach a fucking meddler like you!" He screamed in rage as he brandished a dagger and lunged at Kanda.
"Trash like you don't have the right to be teaching me how to live." Kanda retorted as he dodged the lunging man and used the blunt end of his katana to deal a blow to his assailant's back. As the man toppled over, his partner fumbled with another gun and loosed a shot at Kanda. The vampire avoided the bullet swiftly and darted over to finish him off but the man with the dagger grabbed his legs, pulling Kanda onto the ground and knocking his sword out of his hands.
Kanda fought tooth and nail to throw the man off him and give him a few strong kicks in the gut in the process. But as he pried himself away from the man's limp body, the unmistakable sound of a trigger being pulled and another shot being fired echoed in his ears.
He didn't have enough time to recover. He felt the bullet pierce his shoulder and knock him off balance. He felt himself falling, falling over the edge of the bridge and into the canal.
His mind went blank, the only thought in it was the cold fear of the water about to swallow him.
He was afraid of the water.
"Kanda!" A familiar voice called out his name in anxiety.
In a split second, he felt strong arms wrap around his body, as well as the force of a body crashing into his falling self from the side, the momentum sending both of them not into the canal, but to the edge of it, and onto a coil of massive thick rope used to tie the barges to the side. They both coughed from the dust that was sent up by the impact and Kanda stared into the amber eyes of his savior.
"Now what the heck are you doing here?" He exclaimed.
Tyki grinned somewhat sheepishly as he ruffled his hair. "I figured you could use some extra help. As a gentleman, I could never leave a comrade in distress unaided."
"I didn't need your help…" Kanda muttered grumpily as he felt himself flushing in the face. Then he remembered the two others on the bridge and started to get up but Tyki pulled him back down.
"What the… They're still up there! I have to…"
"No, it's alright. I brought back-up with me."
Shouts were heard and lights flashed about. The police were here, and no doubt the two were being arrested as Kanda listened. He slumped back onto the debris and closed his eyes, trying to calm his nerves down. The relief that he wouldn't need to find out what would happen to a vampire if he met with running water was tremendous.
Tyki casually watched the young man close his eyes and try to take calming breaths. He noticed the way the blush was showing on his pale complexion, though whether it was due to the blood rushing from his fights previously or his embarrassment, Tyki couldn't tell. He found it oddly attractive though, and the lovely way his hair was coming undone just served to complicate matters. But most of all, Tyki found his character intriguing.
This foreigner was new to the place, yet had not hesitated to save some children from certain doom at the risk of his own life. He was very brave, and deep under that cold, snappy exterior, Tyki was certain that a spark of kindness existed, and he felt glad to have met this interesting young man.
He knew he wanted to get to know this person better.
Kanda opened his eyes and blinked a few times before turning to ask Tyki. "The children… Are they safe now?"
Tyki got up and stretched his hand to pull Kanda to his feet. "You can see them if you'd like. They're with some members of the police now, and their papers will be sorted out soon so we can either send them back home or find a shelter for them."
The vampire pulled himself up with much difficulty and steadied himself by leaning onto Tyki's shoulder. He shook his head. "No, I'd like to leave now. I'd much rather not be mixed up in their affairs."
'But you just saved them.' Tyki wondered amusedly. This was definitely a person he would love to get to know.
"Hey, you sir. Down there by the canal. You alright there?" An officer called down. Tyki waved at him.
"We're fine. Is everything being handled fine up there?"
"The criminals have been apprehended and we will be escorting the children to safety now. Does your friend there need any medical assistance?"
"Oh no, I think he will be fine. Thank you, officer. We'll be headed our way." Tyki said as he helped Kanda up the stairs and back onto the bridge where the two men were being led away. Opening his dazed eyes, Kanda could make out another wagon beside the prisoner's car with the children inside. A few of them climbed out and made their way to Kanda, who seemed to shrink back at their advances but Tyki held him firmly.
"Come on now, my good man. They only want to thank you."
The youngest child threw her arms around Kanda and the other two clung onto his hand, thanking him with tears of joy. The ones in the wagon called out their thanks as well and Kanda just nodded dumbly, unable to say a word. Soon, the police led the kids away, and Kanda stopped leaning on Tyki as he watched the wagon disappear down the road.
"Shall I escort you back?" Tyki asked nonchalantly. Kanda shook his head again.
"It's fine. I'll return on my own."
He limped a few steps away and then stopped. Turning back, he fixed Tyki with a determined and conflicted gaze before muttering softly.
Tyki shrugged. "It's my pleasure. I do hope we will meet again."
He was beginning to enjoy Kanda's company, and for a while there he wished that they could somehow become friends. Proud as he was, Tyki was actually quite lonely. And he liked Kanda a lot. Not only his looks and charms, but his unique attitude and character piqued Tyki's interest in him. He was different, different than anyone else he had ever met before in his life, and Tyki was sorry to part ways with him again.
Kanda said nothing as he nodded in return, trying to leave as soon as he could. He needed to get back to the vampires' castle and get the bean sprout to heal him with any way possible without the Earl finding out he had just wasted one whole night saving human children.
But in his heart, he secretly hoped that he would meet Tyki again too.
Just to clear a bit of things up, as to why Kanda is afraid of running water.
According to certain vampire folklore, vampires cannot cross running water, and it, along with holy water, can be fatal to a vampire. In this story, Kanda is only reacting as such according to taboos and rumors he has learned throughout the years, and not through experience because I'm certain no vampire would try and test to see if running water would really kill them.
So yeah, Kanda doesn't want to be the first casualty in this case. He's just being extra paranoid.
A few other things vampires are said to be afraid of: garlic, sunlight(due to their pale skin, even in real life, albinos are actually harmed by sunlight), holy items(such as holy water, crucifixes, rosaries, etc.), wooden stakes(drive it through their heart and you kill them) and many more. Then again, they are merely said to be their weaknesses; these are only rumors or folklore, and in Night Hunt, we'll see if they're true or not.
2.30 a.m. in the morning~ Time for bed. Leave me a review to read when I wake up, will you? =)