Indeed, your eyes are not deceiving you, this is the first chapter of the fanfiction that has been haunting me for a bit less than a year now. Though not all chapters have been written, I am still posting this. I will however not post them all at once since I still like to check some more, even though I now have a wonderful beta-reader, namely aoi_aka on LJ. Thank you, you are such a sweetheart! I'll stop talking now, enjoy!
Rating: T for cursing, Okita, explosions, mayo toothpaste
Lesson 1: If you ever did something bad to another, be prepared to get it back tenfold
Now for the weather forecast, it will be hot today with possible short periods of rain. Tomorrow...
Hijikata only half listened to the weather girl and continued to brush his teeth with the mayonnaise flavored toothpaste. His black hair rather messy, and eyes showing signs of fatigue. As any respectable Shinsengumi member, he was already dressed in his uniform, minus his ascot and jacket. Though his katana stayed faithfully at his side. Both terrorists and the sadist had impeccable timing.
The rest of the week it will continue to be dry and warm. The weather can change even faster than a teenager's mood, so don't complain if I was wrong.
"Ah Toshi! Awake already?" The sound of the voice made him turn around to face his commander still dressed in his pajamas. Luckily not the ones with little hearts on it, Hijikata noticed with relief. Only that man could get away by walking around in that and still not lose face in front of the Shinsengumi. At least the men respected him, with or without the ridiculous sleepwear.
"Mornin', Kondo-san." The mop of black hair turned back to the screen, put extra yellow colored toothpaste on the brush and went on with the brushing. The other sat down next to him and started talking about his latest attempt at convincing that woman to at least look at him without punching him out cold. Out of habit, he answered with 'hmm' and 'probably', not entirely focused on the conversation at hand or the weather forecast. The commercials came up next and after a few minutes of watching a bald man grow hair miraculously, the next program began.
Kondo quickly averted all his attention to the small screen. "Ah, look Toshi! It's time for 'Dark Astrology with Ketsuno Ana'!"
"What about assholes?" Hijikata was clearly still half asleep but the ominous music coming from the television snapped him back to the realm of the awake. He sighed as he saw blood dripping from the program's name in the middle of the screen and a creepy music started."Ah, Kondo-san. Don't go telling me you believe in that sort of stuff…"
"Shhh! It's beginning!" Hijikata sweat-dropped as he watched Kondo glued to the screen, notepad ready to record every little detail for later analysis.
Another person entered the room and Hijikata didn't look up as the sadist, already completely awake and dressed in uniform, took a seat next to him.
'Of course he's awake, he's only asleep when he's not planning something. '
The intro music stopped and Ketsuno Ana, dressed in a pink kimono, appeared on the screen. The talking went on and on but Hijikata paid more attention to the mayonnaise taste in his mouth. His fortune was coming up, and even if he didn't believe in such nonsense, it was always amusing to hear what they predicted every once in a while.
This week's worst fortune is reserved for Taurus. You will probably die this week, but if you manage to make it alive till Friday, you will find the love of your live. Your lucky color is silver.
Hijikata sat there unfazed, though slightly uncomfortable, still brushing his teeth as both Kondo and Sougo turned their heads in his direction. The first with a look of shock and worry, the second with faked interest. Hijikata was sure he saw a certain familiar look in the young man's eyes.
Hijikata stared right back "What?"
He got up to rinse his mouth. Neither Kondo or Sougo said a word and watched him clean his toothbrush at the sink.
Libras will have better luck but will encounter some financial problems. Also beware of sharp things. Lucky color is blue.
"I don't believe in that crap." After putting away everything, he splashed some water in his face to shoo away the fatigue. He dried himself off and after collecting his katana, he went over to the door. Alarmed by a sudden burst of sadistic energy, he turned around and saw a katana coming his way. Experienced when it came to dodging his subordinate's sudden attacks, he skillfully jumped away and avoided getting stabbed in the back. Some would be shocked by the actions of the younger man, but it was normal when it came to the vice-commander and captain of the First Division. The katana was stuck in the wall and Hijikata ignored the 'Che, missed again' and watched Sougo try to pull out the katana. He recovered from the sudden attack and prepared for some yelling.
"What the hell are you doing so early in the morning?!"
Sougo finally got the sword out and turned back to his target. "Ah, Hijikata-san. Don't get mad, she said silver was your lucky color this week so I wanted to give you my katana." He held it up for him to see, "See? Silver." He pointed at it with an innocent blank look on his face. Kondo, completely taken over by the fake innocence, patted Sougo on his back and lectured the second-in-command that he should always accept gifts from others, even if it meant losing a limb or two.
"I'd lose my life if I accepted gifts like that!" The Vice-commander stormed off and closed the door behind him, leaving Kondo to console the seemingly heart-broken Sougo.
"Put some more muscle into it, men!" Kondo yelled at the training men who were swinging down wooden swords with cries of 'hu'.
"It's not 'hu', it's 'ha'!" At Kondo's remark, all men starting yelling 'ha' instead of 'hu', making Kondo nod proudly at his men. All were practicing hard, save for Okita who was sleeping and Yamazaki who was practicing his backhand. But quickly started to run for his life as his vice-commander once again caught him playing 'minton.
Hijikata gave chase to the poor spy. Sometimes Yamazaki wondered why he had become a Shinsengumi member but tried to defend himself anyway.
"But, Hijikata-san. It's just the same isn't it; swinging down a badminton racket or a wooden sword." He noticed a slight bump on the road ahead of him and jumped over it, "I really need to practice more!"
"Get here already to commit seppuku!"
The raging vice-commander, not noticing the bump on the road or even too angry to give a damn, just ran over it but would soon regret this faithful decision.
Something went 'beep'.
Hijikata stopped as he heard a familiar sound come from under his feet.
The smoker exploded with a loud bang and lay first face on the ground in a burnt, crumpled heap. A slight twitch in his left leg.
The men were alarmed by this and they all prepared for an incoming attack from the Joui faction. Sougo just calmly waved at them to carry on and walked over to the possibly dead vice-commander.
"Hijikata-san, still alive there?" Sougou crouched next to the small crater the explosion had created and poked the object inside of it with his wooden practice sword. He received no response and turned to Kondo.
"Ah, Kondo-san. No fun, he's dead already." He poked it again and received a 'Die Sougo' in response.
"Just where are those terrorists hiding?" Hijikata walked around Edo, the third-in-command of the Shinsengumi walking beside him. Training had ended rather abruptly and as it was Monday, he had to patrol in the morning and in the afternoon. The red light district had already been checked but he refused to go back until they found someone to arrest, even if it was only to quell his anger. Hijikata sighed at the lack of suspicious people and turned to the other.
"Ne, Sougo. W…" He looked at his subordinate and saw him carefully writing a very familiar name in a notebook. A black, ruled notebook and knowing Sougo that could only be one thing.
"Just what are you doing?" His eyebrow twitched.
Sougo looked up with big, innocent eyes, playing his role perfectly. "But Hijikata-san, I was just helping you out of your misery."
His eyebrow twitched even more at that.
"I was just going to end it quickly for you, seeing as you will die a horrible death by Friday."
'End it quickly?! And they didn't even say I was going to die a horrible death! What is this, wishful thinking?!'
"So, which one do you prefer? Choke on mayonnaise or get hit by a car?" Sougo didn't look up and debated which choice would be the best, seeing as as it was still possible that he would survive the second, but it would be a lot more painful. Or maybe the mayonnaise, they always did say that love would kill you in the end.
He walked off and accidentally kicked something.
Something went 'beep' again.
"Sougo, you basta…" But he saw the other was still behind. A safe distance away. The only thing the people of Edo saw was a giant explosion and when the smoke had cleared up, the only thing that could be found was a burnt cigarette and a lost bottle of mayonnaise.
"Ne, Toshi. This is really problematic."
Kondo sat in front of the smoking Hijikata who looked like he would really kill someone in the next minute. Just that morning, the unfortunate man had been blown up, hit by lightning on a cloudless day, almost overrun by a car, blown up again, got hit by a motorcycle going on a rampages, and had almost been crushed by a pack of roof tiles. Even then Hijikata refused to admit he believed in horoscopes but had agreed to this meeting in Kondo's office after a third car had almost hit him, in no less than an hour.
Kondo crossed his arms over his chest and nodded with a serious expression. "If you keep attracting bad luck, you won't be able to do your work properly. You'd better take this week off."
"Yes, Hijikata-san. Take the week off, or rather, just drop dead already." Sougo added, mask still over his eyes, "It's bad for you health."
"You just shut up already! And are you really convinced death is going to solve my health problems?!!" Hijikata gritted his teeth and lit up a cigarette. He slowly inhaled and calmed himself down before speaking up again.
"Besides, you need me around here." It was a fact that couldn't be denied. Hijikata was the brain of the Shinsengumi, the motor that kept it running.
He knew he had won that argument and enjoyed the tobacco between his lips. He inhaled again and looked at Sougo, surprised to find him sitting there with a grin on his face. The output of sadistic energy reached its peak and Sougo opened his mouth to propose the possible demise of Hijikata.
"Ne, Kondo-san. Why don't we hire Danna to babysit Hijikata-san?" Kondo looked back at the youngest of the duo in confusion, "He can look out for Hijikata-san so he can still do his job. Besides, as silver is his lucky color, Hijikata-san will always have his lucky color with him."
'You are the fucking' misfortune!' But he kept his mouth shut.
Kondo closed his eyes and thought it over. Hijikata, finally realizing that Kondo was actually considering it, looked back in shock at his subordinate and saw the grin hadn't disappeared yet. He needed a plan of action. He thought of all possible excuses he could give Kondo to not hire the Yorozuya, but all in vain.
Sougo finally went for the kill.
"He's capable enough and we're sure he won't leak out any information. He's the only person we can trust to do this job, Kondo-san."
The killing blow was delivered and Hijikata felt himself surrounded by light. He could see a tunnel with a bright light at the end, all the mayonnaise waiting for his arrival. He was snapped out of his near-death experience by Kondo and felt like pummeling someone.
A badminton player would do.
"Brilliant idea, Sougo!" The commander jumped up and ran to the phone, already dialing the number of the Yorozuya office. Hijikata watched him with a shocked expression and could feel the sadist's glare on his back. He turned around and glared right back. Some electricity sparked when their eyes met and a little spark set a part of the tatami smoking.
'You'll pay for this.' Was the thought that flashed through Hijikata's head and he put out the small fire with his cushion. After successfully saving the barracks from even further damage, he passed by Kondo who was talking to the Yorozuya on the phone and walked outside, looking for someone to beat up.
"Gin-chan, who was that?" Kagura looked up from the television and averted her attention to her 'boss', "Someone you're in debt with?"
Gintoki looked back. "No, Kagura-chan, it's not good for a little girl to say things like that."
He put the phone back on the hook and went to sit on his blue couch. He picked his wallet out of his yukata's pocket and opened it. Only a few coins could be found and after heaving a big sigh, he put it back and hung his head in defeat.
'Guess there's no other option.' He looked up and turned to the young Yato girl. "Oi, Kagura. I got me a little job."
She kept her attention on the television screen. "Does it involve selling yourself like Sahara-kun had to do to be able to pay his sister's niece's uncle's debt?"
Gintoki sweat-dropped. "Just what have you been watching on that?!" And he pointed accusingly at the television.
'Well, I'm just selling my soul to the devil… No big deal.' He sighed and left his comfortable couch for the door. After putting on his boots, his gaze wandered to the television-watching girl.
"I'll be back on Friday!" He closed the doorbehind him and was greeted by the mild spring wind.
'It's picking up again.'
He descended the wooden stairs and halted in front of the snack shop. He debated if he should enter or not, if he did, he should prepare an escape route in case she decided to demand the rent.
'To enter or not to enter…'
'Might as well ask, she's not going to kill me.' He opened the door and entered the dark snack shop, ignoring the 'closed' sign. There were a few lights on inside, since only a small bit of light filtered inside through one of the windows. The smell of tobacco hung in the air.
"I'm sorry, we…" The old woman behind the bar started to say but stopped as she saw the good-for-nothing perm step in. "Oh, it's just you," Otose lit up a cigarette and inhaled, "What do you want?"
"Well you see-" He started.
"You're not getting off this month." She cut him off abruptly.
Gintoki sweat-dropped at the natural reaction of the older woman but continued, "Not that." He scratched his head and averted his gaze. Asking a favor wasn't something he enjoyed doing. He sighed and looked back at the older woman.
"I have this job I have to do, but I'll be away till Friday, so…"
"I'll keep an eye out for the brats." She exhaled and averted her gaze to look at Tama who was cleaning, "You don't have to worry."
A smile graced his lips as he headed back to the door of the small shop. "Thanks, I'll try to pay the rent this month." He closed the door behind him but couldn't help but cringe at the sudden screaming.
"What about last month?!"
At least he had escaped...
It's actually been quite a while since I've been nervous to post something, but I really am right now. Well this chapter is only roughly 3,000 words, but future chapters will be more around 6,000 words, but I thought it was a good time to stop right here, otherwise it would get confusing. It will be around 7 or 8 chapters, though I think I'll need more than that... I'm done talking now.