It was a sunny early summer day at Funbari Inn. The colours of the approaching evening were slowly mixing with the blue shades of the sky, the birds were still singing in the warm late afternoon and everything seemed right with the world, creating a perfect idyll for the two sole inhabitants of the Inn.
Yoh was sprawled on the floor to the side of the tea table, onyx gaze pinned to the television set but his mind really not what was shown on it. Across the table from him his fiancée, Anna, was quietly reading a book, having long ago deemed the TV unworthy of her attention.
It was most unlike Yoh to have his rest disturbed by anything, least of all what someone said to him but for some reason the recent conversation he'd had with Ren and Horo Horo kept coming back to him, making a pest of itself.
After some time the conversation had steered into a rather unlikely direction—the Asakura heir couldn't even remember how it had happened but somehow his relationship with the obstinate itako had become the topic of discussion.
"What do you mean you haven't gone very far? You're engaged to her, aren't you?" Horo Horo had said, an azure brow raised skeptically. "You've at least kissed, right?"
Yoh had laughed with a hand behind his neck, and said, "Well, if the kisses she forced on me when we were five count…"
Both Ren and Horo Horo had donned on a look of complete astonishment at that piece of information.
"You haven't even kissed your fiancée? And you dare call yourself a man?" Ren had practically hollered, a weird burning look in his eyes. He must have felt insulted that he could never lose to this kind of guy that wasn't very manly by his personal standards.
"Well, it's not like we can blame you though—she really is much like a demon. No wonder you wouldn't feel like doing anything like that with her." Horo Horo had nodded to himself, his arms crossed over his chest while he mulled over the thought. And to think that at one point in time he'd felt jealous of the poor bastard for having a fiancée when he himself didn't even have a girlfriend…!
Yoh had laughed good-naturedly, cocking his head slightly to the side. "I really don't think it's too good an idea to talk much about Anna—people haven't said in vain, "Speak of the Devil and he will appear!" All three sixteen-year-old boys had shuddered at that thought. "But I think you have the wrong idea there."
"About your fiancée being a demon?" Ren had asked, brows rising in question.
"About not wanting to kiss her." Yoh had clarified, colour rising to his cheeks in embarrassment at the admission.
"So why don't you?" Horo Horo couldn't understand.
Yoh had agonized over it a bit before finally saying, "Because! It's Anna we're talking about here! If you do anything—anything—that displeases her, she'll punish you in the most unimaginably creative and painful of ways! I don't want to incur her wrath…"
Both boys had flinched back at the memories of the ways she'd slapped or hit people for saying or doing something that didn't sit right with her but they had shaken out of their stupor to give Yoh the best pointed looks they could manage at the moment.
"You haven't kissed your fiancée because you're afraid of her?" Horo Horo had said, a condescending look in his eyes.
"And you dare call yourself a man?!" Ren had added insult to injury, shaking his head in disapproval.
And for the rest of the evening the two had proceeded to explain to him how he should get his act together and man up if he wanted his future marriage to work.
To think that he'd take what those ignorant friends of his had said to heart…
She looked so engrossed in her read she almost seemed transfixed by the story. She hadn't moved or talked in so long, the only movements she made her fingers turning the pages at uneven intervals.
She was so concentrated on the book that he could easily catch her off-guard. Maybe that would be—
No, no, what was he thinking? If he did something sneaky like that, he'd definitely get her angry. Idiot! Wasn't there any better way of doing this? Then again, he really doubted any other way he came up with would wield a much different result for him…
But her slightly parted lips looked so delectable from his vantage point across from her. He'd thought about it for a while, wondered what it would feel like to kiss her—they were no longer kids and it would no longer be a game. She wasn't going to be his wife in name only but he knew well that there were boundaries that needed to be kept if he wanted to have the easy, laidback life he so yearned.
And when it came to that kind of personal space, he wasn't exactly sure where he stood. Was he still a kid to her? Someone she couldn't look at with that kind of eyes? Or was he closer to the image of the husband that she'd been talking about for so long?
Working out complicated matters by thinking them over had never been Yoh's forte, so he gave up that train of thought since it was useless.
He shouldn't have even been considering that—it would surely ensure him lots of pain and broken bones—but he couldn't help it. He was enthralled by her calm silhouette bathed in the waning light of the setting sun.
He was drawn in like a moth to a flame and there was really nothing he could do about it.
His mouth opened and the words spilled from his lips before he could reconsider saying them.
"Say, Anna…" He began slowly in an attempt to draw her attention some from her book.
She hummed lightly in response to show him she was listening but not overly interested in whatever he had to say. He pushed himself up, from having his head propped up on his elbow to resting his weight on the same hand while sitting up.
"Can I kiss you?"
That most certainly succeeded in grabbing her attention, if the way her eyes stopped moving over the words written in her book was any indication to that. She slowly shifted her cool gaze to him, blinking ever so slightly as she looked at him, a calculating look in her eyes. She was probably wondering what to make of his question—mock him, hit him or just wave him off?
Or… just maybe… ?
He tilted forward just a millimeter, unaware of the fact he was holding his breath.
Anna was never one to say anything before thinking it over well, and answering such a question… She really didn't know how to take it, especially with his ambiguous tone of asking—it could really mean anything.
Then he pulled himself closer—he was barely a foot away from her face, his expression the epitome of innocence and gentleness as he kept looking imploringly at her with those endearing wide eyes of his.
She wasn't about to be fooled by his trickery though—she would whip him into shape, for trying to pull a fast one on her. She'd just been about to give him a piece of her mind, setting her book face-down on the table, the fingers of one of her hands still holding its spine, leaving it open on the table—she'd just looked away for a part of a second, only to find him all she could see when she looked up.
He was close, close, too close…!
"Can I…?" he murmured and his warm breath tickled her skin, making her stomach do flips and stealing the air from her lungs.
If this was a challenge, she wasn't about to back down without a fight!
Her brows drew together and narrowed over her hardened, focused eyes.
"Are you trying to pressure me into doing what you want?" She could barely discern a shake of his head at her question. Her eyes narrowed even further. "Because that's what it looks like to me."
"If you don't like it, I won't," he said breathlessly, his voice barely above a whisper. "I just wanted to try it."
She didn't look at all convinced and even if he used his most persuasive puppy dog-like look on her the fact he was so damn close worked against his cause in the case.
She thought that if she measured it, she probably wouldn't be able to fit a finger in the distance between their lips then.
And yet he moved not even a millimeter further, his gaze still pinned to hers.
"Just a little…" She wondered if she'd heard him say it or if she imagined it, an almost soundless request for permission further.
Her heart fluttered in her chest and her seasoned obstinacy crumbled under the weight of the look in his onyx gaze.
"Just… a little…" she mouthed subtly in mute agreement, and felt the gravity that had been binding her to him growing ever stronger as he drew ever nearer, ever so slowly, ever so cautiously, ever so gently.
Their first kiss was like the feather-light touch of an angel, a delicate contact of lips against lips, a little clumsy and inexperienced and more an experiment than anything else.
And yet it made both teenagers' breathing catch in their throats, sending sparks of playfully biting electricity from the point of contact to every part of their beings, exhilarating and quickening the rhythm of their beating hearts.
And Yoh had been a bit surprised to find that the lips that usually spilled such biting, scathing retorts and comments, which made such snide remarks and were practically venomous to everyone on the face of the Earth, were actually so soft and pleasant to the touch. They yielded to his presence, just so, just right, enticing him even more, making the whole experience even more invigorating.
He parted from her then, for just a tiny millimeter, to take a breath that he hadn't realized he had been holding for so long. He looked at her lightly closed eyelids, her slightly parted lips and felt a tug in his navel that compelled him forward to another kiss before he could make the same decision on his own.
The second kiss was more daring, more adventurous than Yoh had ever been.
Her skin began tingling everywhere it came in contact with his and spread out to everywhere that didn't, too. She could almost swear her heart was hitting hard against the confines of her air pipe right then and that her entire body was on fire, every sense overcome with an emotion that was making her mind promptly shut down.
She immediately decided that it was a dangerous sensation when she almost sighed into his touch when he angled his head a little to the side, the hand not supporting his weight lightly cupping her cheek.
One moment he was moving his lips against hers, her mouth pliant against his, awakening feelings he'd never known he'd even been capable of experiencing, the next he was sprawled on the floor, nursing a growing bump on the side of his head. He whined pitifully while looking up at her.
She was once again the epitome of composure as she looked down at him, her fisted hand still raised to her eye level.
"I think that hardly qualifies as just a little," she commented icily, making him laugh sheepishly and shrink back from the honestly hostile look she was giving him.
Before the situation could get any more awkward, Amidamaru's spirit ball form flew into the room from the open window, the traces of an unnaturally flustered look evident on his tiny face.
"Yoh-dono! On my way back from the cemetery today I saw that the local supermarket has a really good offer on your favourite dish—you should go take that for dinner before it sells out!"
Yoh looked up dazedly at the floating spirit, a smile slowly spreading on his face while he picked himself up off the floor.
"Ahh, I'd been wondering what to do for dinner tonight. Then I shall go get us some of that—it will definitely be better than my cooking, that's for sure." He laughed good-naturedly and looked back over his shoulder at Anna who had picked up her book again, having it blocking most of her face from his view. He smiled again and told her, "I'm off then."
She just hummed in reply, immersed in her read once more.
Amidamaru lingered for a bit at the doorway, a slightly troubled look on his face as he observed Anna.
Yoh, on the other hand, once he was out of the room, stopped as if rooted to the spot. He raised a hand to his mouth, slightly tracing his lower lip with a fingertip. Then he smiled.
He knew he could definitely get used to this thing and if a hit over the head was all he got, he considered it quite the bargain.
"Come on, Amidamaru, let's go get us some dinner," he told the spirit who followed him with a matching smile that the boy found somewhat odd after his considerable silence.
As they walked towards the store, the samurai's good mood didn't seem to dissipate any. That's when it occurred to the young shaman to ask,
"Say, where were you anyway?"
His simple, innocent question prompted lots of embarrassment, stuttering and made up excuses on part of his disembodied friend.
When he was finally out of the room—those soul-searching onyx eyes of his no longer fixed upon her, reading her every thought, it felt—she let out a breath she hadn't known she'd been holding, putting down the book she'd unintentionally used to put something—anything, like a barrier—between them. She felt ashamed of herself, to have been reduced to such a state, and by Yoh of all people too…
She lightly touched a finger to her lips where the feel of his kiss still lingered and smouldered.
The corners of her mouth lifted up just slightly.
She then decided that maybe next time she shouldn't hit him too hard—she would hate beating all thoughts of further experimentation from that airy head of his, after all.
A/N: This is my first venture into the world of Shaman King fanfiction and that is probably evident. I'm still testing the waters here so please excuse me in case I leave things to be desired. xD
Anyway, constructive criticism is very much welcome. I like to improve my writing in any way. I hope you enjoyed the story and this originally was meant as a multi-chapter fic, which would get increasingly steamy. But I decided to leave deciding that up to you. :D You tell me if you'd like that and I'd give it a try. X3