Wow, this was supposed to be a short epilog. Oh well, I think it wrapped things up nicely. It's about time too. I've never taken a year and a half to write one story before. Thank you all for being so patient and especially for all the great reviews. I saw a lot of knew names review, save and favorite this story and me as an author. I just love it, thank you. Everyone please review the ending and let me know what you liked about this story. Even if it's just a few words, I'd like to see if I can set a personal record for reviews on a single chapter.

The only other story I have planned is a sweet little Hiei one shot. Though I got the idea from another Nickelback song (Gotta Be Somebody), it won't be a song fic.

Well, until we meet again, thank you and TTFN. SFM

EPILOG

Sprinting down the stairs, Shea suddenly stopped short. "Daddy, I wasn't expecting you. I was just heading out to meet Kohl."

Hiding his relief at her words, Yusuke willingly returned the embrace. "That's alright Honey, I was actually just looking for a place to crash tonight."

Shea smiled. "Daddy, you know you're always welcome here at Tourin. Even though you gave me your throne, this is still your home. You should come around more often. Kohl and I would love to see more of you."

Absently, Yusuke nodded. "I know Honey. I've just had a lot on my mind lately."

Seeing the distant look in his eyes, Shea frowned. "Daddy, I know what day it is. Are you alright? You haven't been yourself lately. I mean, you suddenly turned Tourin over to me right after…"

Yusuke interrupted her. "Everything is fine Baby Girl. What are you and Kohl up to?"

Shea grinned. No matter how old she got, she would always be Daddy's Baby Girl. "We're going to the cabin for a few days. You know how much Kohl likes to hunt the night pheasants by the lake. Then I'll make a big fire and cook them the way Uncle Kurama and Uncle Hiei showed me."

Thinking back to those great trips the three of them would take Shea, Hina and Kohl on all those years ago made Yusuke smile. Kurama and Hiei were always there for him and Shea after Keiko passed away. He couldn't even remember how many centuries ago that had been.

The last few years though, a lot had changed. For one, Shea was ruling Tourin now. Wanting her to experience life to it's fullest, Yusuke hadn't been in any hurry to turn command over to her. Now that he had though, he didn't regret it. She was a formidable yet fair leader. Not only had she inherited his immense power, Hiei had taught her to use that power with speed, precision and skill that no one could match. Thanks to Keiko's genes and Kurama's tutelage, she also had a brilliant mind.

Looking at the beautiful and powerful demon she had become, Yusuke couldn't help but be proud of his daughter. "Don't worry about me Honey. You two have a good time. Make sure that mate of yours tries that new technique I showed him. It will blow the feathers right off the birds for him."

Shaking her head as she laughed, Shea kissed his cheek. "I will, but only if you promise to stick around so we can visit when I get back."

Nodding, but not making any promises, Yusuke waved as she headed for the door. With a look over her shoulder, Shea called out to the housekeeper. "Madori, please make sure my old man eats something. He's looking kind of skinny these days."

Once she was gone, Yusuke headed to the west wing. Two years ago, when he'd turned his kingdom over to Shea, she and her mate Kohl had moved back to Tourin. Though he hadn't officially moved out, Yusuke had moved his things to the west wing, leaving them the rest of the fortress.

Pouring himself a drink, Yusuke looked around the sitting room. As usual his gaze landed first on an old picture of Keiko. Even though his beloved wife had been gone for several hundred years, he still missed her every single day. With a sigh, he tore his gaze away to look at several other old photos. One of his favorites was one of the whole gang at his and Keiko's wedding. Walking over to the fire place, Yusuke picked up a picture of Atsuko. Even though she'd never been much of a mom, she was still his mom and he'd always loved her.

Setting it down, he turned to look at a picture of Hiei and Kurama. It was taken at the temple, right after their mating ceremony. Kurama's smile was filled with so much love it made Yusuke's heart ache. Looking at Hiei, a stranger might think that love was one sided. Yusuke however could remember the blush that crept up the fire demon's cheeks and how tightly he held onto his fox as if it were yesterday.

With a sigh, Yusuke turned, downed his drink then slammed the glass down on an end table. Hoping a shower would wash away the melancholy he was feeling, Yusuke headed for his room. An hour later, wearing nothing but a robe, Yusuke came out of the bathroom still trying to towel his long hair dry. "Damn, some times I miss my short hair."

Shaking his head for being foolish enough to talk to himself, Yusuke poured himself another drink. When he and Shea had returned to Makai after Keiko's death, Yusuke had stopped denying his Mozuku heritage. He smiled as he remembered a conversation with Kurama about a year after his return. The Youko had told him that his long sexy hair, rippling muscles and wicked tattoos would have demons falling at his feet begging to be his lover. Damn if that fox hadn't been right.

Pushing open the terrace doors, Yusuke looked out at the night sky. Standing there, almost as if he were waiting for something, he almost didn't hear the knock on his door. Turning, he called out. "Enter!"

A moment later Madori came in pushing a cart. "Lady Shea's orders My Lord."

Yusuke nodded to the old demoness that had served him so well over the years. "Thank you Madori."

Before she could leave, Yusuke inquired. "Madori, I'm sure I gave you an estate and a pension so you could retire. Why are you still working?"

Madori smiled. "Oh, I take lots of holidays now My Lord, but I'd miss my family too much to retire. You may be out carousing all the time, but Lady Shea and Lord Kohl still need me. I'm hoping they'll give me some babies to nanny soon. Maybe after that I'll retire."

Yusuke grinned. "Even when you do retire, you are part of our family Madori and will always be welcome here."

Blushing, Madori shook a motherly finger at him. "Now you eat something Lord Yusuke, or Lady Shea will scold us both when she gets back."

After she left, Yusuke did pick at the food a bit before turning one of the big chairs to face the open doors. With another drink in hand, Yusuke sat back to watch the stars and get lost in his thoughts. Foremost in his thoughts these days had been Hiei and Kurama. He physically hurt every time he thought of them.

Pushing back the pain, Yusuke's thought went back to the old days. They had all stayed in the Ningenkai for a while, each of them having someone they loved to stay for. They all spent most of their time at the temple, especially as the humans began to age. With a smile, Yusuke recalled some of the things he, Hiei and Kurama had done over the years in an attempt to look older.

Kuwabara and Yukina had been the first to have a child. As expected it was a Koorime daughter they named Hina after Hiei and Yukina's mother. Then surprisingly, since Koorime only give birth once in their lifetime, Yukina had become pregnant again. Daisuke had not only surprised them all by being a boy, he was also a fire demon. Apparently, Yukina was not the pure Koorime she was believed to have been.

Yukina had stayed in the Ningenkai at her husband's side until his death. A sad smile crossed Yusuke's lips as he remembered his best friend's premature death at age fifty seven. Kuwabara had died fighting, just the way he would have wanted. For some time Yusuke, Hiei and Kurama had been trying to convince the aging human that it was unwise for him to follow them into the occasional battle that crossed the human border, but as usual, Kuwabara wouldn't be left behind.

Heartbroken, Yukina had wanted to take her now grown children to Koorime Island. Reminded of how the Koorime had treated Hiei though, she eventually allowed him to take them to live at Alaric. Almost immediately, Hina had fallen in love with and mated one of Hiei's advisors. She still lives nearby. Daisuke had joined Hiei's army and eventually became his heir. Yukina still lives at Alaric with Daisuke and his mate.

As for him and Keiko, they had had a long life together. Their only child, Shea had been born two years after their wedding. She turned out to be the best of both of her parents. She was smart like Keiko, and with her mother and Uncle Kurama to tutor her, had been at the top of her class all through school. She was also exceptionally powerful. Unlike Yusuke, her training had started as soon as she could walk.

Not having children of their own, Hiei and Kurama had taken their rolls as uncles and godfathers very seriously. Shea, as well as Hina and Daisuke had trained with them almost daily. Hina, like her mother though, eventually chose to use her powers for healing.

When Kuwabara died, and Yukina and her children returned to Makai, Yusuke and Keiko moved to the temple. The seclusion of the temple had made it easer for Yusuke to hide his younger appearance from the human world. Eventually though, time took it's toll, and Keiko had pass away.

Once again Yusuke's thoughts turned to Hiei and Kurama and wondered if today would be the day. It had been two years today that their lives had changed. Shaking the thought away, his mind returned to the past as he poured himself another drink. For many years, Hiei and Kurama had divided their time between Makai and Ningenkai. Only when Shiori passed away at the ripe old age of 87 had they moved permanently to Makai. Together Hiei, Kurama and Yusuke had trained the next generation of Makai rulers.

A few centuries ago there was trouble between the worlds when Makai had been exposed, and the humans learned about the existence of demons. After a few decades of conflict however, ambassadors Yusuke and Kurama helped arrange a treaty that allowed the free crossing of both demons and humans between worlds. Barriers were however erected in the lower regions of Makai to contain the larger, more aggressive demons.

A little over a century ago, when a relative peace had ensued between the worlds, Hiei resigned as ruler of Alaric, leaving Daisuke in command. Free from his duties, Hiei took Kurama deep into Makai where they lived quietly in a secluded estate until two years ago.

An odd feeling suddenly drew Yusuke from his thoughts. Cautiously, he remained still and waited. A few minutes later, the moment he had waited two years for finally happened. Seeing the silent figure in the shadows, Yusuke hid a sigh of relief. "I had a feeling today would be the day. I've missed you old friend."

Patiently, Yusuke watched him hesitate then slowly move out of the shadows. Though he'd hoped he'd be wrong, Yusuke wasn't surprised at his friend's appearance. Hiei looked awful. His normally shimmering, electrified hair, was limp and lifeless. His clothes were torn and tattered revealing an unnaturally thin frame. The part that had Yusuke worried the most though was Hiei's eyes. The ruby orbs that once danced with fire, were now dull and vacant.

Knowing he could easily spook the fire demon into running, Yusuke hid his concern by clenching his fingers into the folds his robe and calmly smiling. "Gods Hiei, it's good to see you. I know you needed time, but I've been worried about you."

Hiei just stood there staring at him with those big empty eyes. Awkwardly, Yusuke tried again to draw him out. "Why don't I pour you a drink and you can have something to eat?"

Before Yusuke could rise, he saw Hiei slowly shake his head. Yusuke waited, and after a minute he heard Hiei whisper. "Did you mean what you said?"

Even though it had been centuries, Yusuke knew exactly what Hiei was asking. "Yes Hiei, I meant every word. I promised to be here for you, and I am. I promised Kurama I'd love you and fight beside you when he no longer could. I'm your friend Hiei, and now that you're here, I'll never let you be alone again."

The sincerity in the Toushin's words were like a balm to Hiei's wounded soul, and Yusuke could actually see the fire demon's relief. Waiting for Hiei to make the next move, Yusuke didn't have long to wait. A moment later Hiei hesitantly moved forward. Only when Hiei was standing right before him, did Yusuke move. Reaching out, he took Hiei's hand in his and laced their fingers together.

A small gasp slipped past Hiei's lips at the first physical contact he'd had in two years. Two years ago to the day, Kurama had died peacefully, held tightly in Hiei's arms. Hiei then laid the Youko out on their bed, and burned their entire estate to the ground. After which, Hiei sent a telepathic message to Yukina that Kurama was gone. He told her that he wanted to be left alone, but not to worry, and that he'd come back when he was ready.

It wasn't until just now, when Yusuke took his hand, that he realized how much he missed being touched. That he didn't want to be alone any more. It took two years, but he was finally ready to return to his family and friends and live again.

Yusuke didn't know if he was surprised or relieved when Hiei suddenly crawled up to kneel across his lap. Releasing Yusuke's hand, Hiei slipped his arms around the Toushin and tucked his face into his neck. With a huge sigh, Yusuke wrapped his own arms around the fire demon and held him tight. Overwhelmed with emotions he could no longer control, Hiei trembled. Feeling this, Yusuke rubbed his back and held him tighter.

Minutes passed, and Hiei began to relax. After a while, Hiei finally whispered. "He kept his promise Yusuke. Kurama never left my side, not until he drew his last breath."

Having no words to comfort his friend, Yusuke just nodded. Some time later, when they finally drew apart, Yusuke smiled. "Alright my friend, the first order of business for you is a bath. You stink."

Not giving Hiei a chance to do more than grunt, Yusuke picked him up and headed for the bathroom. Setting him down, Yusuke smirked. "Strip off those rags and throw them away. I'll find you something to wear later."

Hiei might have been nervous if Yusuke had watched him undress, but he'd busied himself filling the tub. After that, he gathered fresh towels and a robe. "Hop in Hiei, I made it nice and hot for you."

Hiei stepped down into the large tub, but Yusuke stopped him when he was only waist deep. "Hang on Hiei. Let's get you washed first."

Big ruby eyes looked up at Yusuke as he picked up a washcloth. Slowly, making sure he wasn't doing anything Hiei wouldn't allow, Yusuke sat by the tub, pushed up the sleeves of his robe, dipped the cloth in the water, then lathered it with soap. Keeping his eyes fixed on Hiei's, Yusuke began washing him.

No one but Kurama had ever washed him before, and Hiei began to feel uneasy. Then the sleeve of Yusuke's robe slipped down his arm, distracting him. Impatiently, Yusuke pushed it up again before returning to his task. When the other sleeve slipped, and Yusuke shoved it up in frustration, Hiei smirked. Seeing this, Yusuke smiled. "The damn things just won't stay up."

Hesitating only a moment, Hiei slowly reached out and pushed the robe off of one of Yusuke's shoulders. "Then maybe you should just take it off."

Yusuke's heart skipped a beat at Hiei's suggestion. Again moving slowly, Yusuke slipped out of the robe, tossed it aside and slid into the water. Picking up the washcloth, Yusuke finished washing Hiei. "Alright Hiei, rinse off and let's get that hair washed."

Reluctantly, Hiei moved away, slipped deeper in the tub and dunked himself. When he came up, Yusuke was beside him with the shampoo. Hiei closed his eyes as Yusuke lathered his head. Without realizing it, Hiei leaned against Yusuke's chest. With a smile, Yusuke finished with his hair, leaned closer and whispered. "Rinse your hair Hiei so we can get out of here."

Finished with Hiei's bath, both men climbed from the tub. A bit uncertainly, they dried each other off before donning warm robes. Back in the bedroom Yusuke drew Hiei back to his large chair. With Hiei settled snuggly against him, Yusuke reached over to the cart of food and picked up a plate. Seeing the hopeful look in Yusuke's eyes, Hiei dutifully tried to eat.

After watching Hiei pick at the food for a few minutes, Yusuke set the plate aside. "It's late Hiei, let's go get some sleep."

With an arm around Hiei, Yusuke rose from the chair and led them to the bed. When Hiei didn't make a move to stop him, Yusuke removed the fire demon's robe, then his own. Yusuke then pulled back the covers, and Hiei crawled in. Turning out the light, Yusuke climbed in behind him. A little awkwardly, the two settled together in the center of the big bed.

Settled against Yusuke's chest, Hiei knew he would never mistake the Mozuku's muscular body for his Youko's graceful, elegant physique. What surprised Hiei though was he really didn't mind. Even though he loved Kurama more than anything, he knew there had always been a place in his heart for Yusuke.

Beside him Yusuke watched him closely. "Hiei, there's no rush. We'll take this as slow as you want. It's only been two years… ouch!"

As Yusuke rubbed the nipple Hiei had just pinched, the fire demon smirked. "Shut up Detective. Kurama spent centuries preparing me for the day when I would have to live on without him. I've had two years to mourn. It's been two years since I've been kissed, hugged, held or even touched. I wouldn't be here if I wasn't ready. Now make love to me, or I'm going to show you why my fox was always so willing to submit to me."

Yusuke didn't know if he was more turned on at finally getting to make love to the sexy fire demon, or by the thought of what Hiei would do to him. "You can show me all the wicked little tricks Kurama taught you next time. Right now I want you so much…"

Tired of waiting himself, Hiei grabbed a hand full of the Toushin's long black hair and pulled him close for a kiss. That was all the encouragement Yusuke needed to push Hiei back on the bed and ravish him with his mouth and hands. After two years of abstinence, Hiei's sensitive body shivered and twitched with every touch. Before long he was moaning. "Gods Yusuke, I need you!"

Hiei nibbled along a muscular ribcage as Yusuke stretched out to grab a tube from beside the bed. A moment later Hiei was back on his back, clutching the sheets and trying not to cry out as Yusuke's mouth descended on his erection. Planting his feet on the bed Hiei tried thrusting into Yusuke's mouth. Grabbing his lover's hips, Yusuke chuckled and held them firmly in place. The vibrations sent the long denied fire demon spiraling out of control.

As Hiei lay spent and panting, Yusuke reached for the lube and carefully began touching him. Almost instantly, Hiei's desire began to build again. With the urgency of his first orgasm passed, Hiei lay back and moaned as Yusuke's mouth and hands pleasured him. "Fuck yeah! Right there!"

Nearly ready to explode himself, Yusuke crawled up Hiei's body and moved to take him. Seeing Hiei's eyes closed, Yusuke leaned down and whispered. "Open your eyes Hiei. I want you to see it's me loving you."

When Hiei's eyes met his, Yusuke caught just a hint of sadness in their ruby depths before it was gone. "Take me Yusuke. Make me feel again."

With their gazes locked together, Yusuke took him. Hiei gasped briefly in surprise before wrapping his legs around his lover. Time stood still as they moved together. Only when their passion began to overwhelm them did they finally break eye contact. Locked in a lover's embrace, they kissed, licked and nipped at each other as they each learned the other's scent, touch and taste.

Eventually, desire took control and Yusuke held him tight and drove hard into Hiei's willing body. Moans and cries filled the room as their passion built until they both cried out in release. Before he could collapse on Hiei, Yusuke rolled them onto their sides. Panting and sweating, they continued to hold one another. As their breathing quieted, Yusuke whispered. "I love you Hiei. It's alright if you aren't ready to say it back… Ouch! Stop that!"

Leaning down to apologetically lick at the nipple he'd just pinched, Hiei growled. "Then stop assuming I'm not ready for this! I told you, I wouldn't be here if I wasn't ready. I won't lie to you Yusuke, Kurama will always be the love of my life. That doesn't mean I'm incapable of loving you too. Your love will always be Keiko, yet you can still love me. Some day, I hope to be reunited with my fox again, just as I'm sure you want to be with your woman. Right here, right now though, it's just you and me."

Smiling, Yusuke leaned over to kiss Hiei before holding him close. "Until then, it's just you and me Hiei."

THE END