Disclaimer: Yu Yu Hakusho © Shonen Jump and others. I'm not on that list.

This is to tide you over until I can get over my writers block on Dark Realm. And thanks to the Anime Club from Trinity Christian, yes it is getting updated. You guys rock, by the way. I love getting those kind of reviews.

Set in the same blood-brothers AU as Dark Realm and Stars. A different look at the Gate of Betrayal.


They were stuck. Seriously stuck, with only enough leeway for one to escape. Hiei grunted as he felt the weight of the ceiling shift. The humans were tiring, and unfortunately he needed the humans to keep pushing up. Hiei did not mind dying, but he'd much rather go in a battle.

Not by being crushed by a ceiling because of a bunch of stupid humans.

He glanced over at Kurama. Luckily, the fox demon was close enough to Hiei that, if he was quick, he could reach out and grab his wrist. Kurama caught his gaze, and slowly shook his head. Hiei scowled. /We can get out. You know I'm fast enough./ he pointed out. Kurama offered a small smile.

/I know you are./ he 'said', and as usual his mental voice was laced with strain. It was harder for Kurama to focus on his words like Hiei could. /But think of it – if we let the humans die, then Koenma will have to punish us./

Hiei's scowl grew more pronounced. Swell. If he wanted to live, he was going to have to save a couple of worthless humans as well. Koenma himself may still be a child by Spirit Realm standards, but he was a child who could condemn Kurama and Hiei to the Pit to be tortured for all eternity. Killing humans was considered the highest crime, and since Yusuke and Kuwabara were under Hiei and Kurama's care, letting them die would be the same as killing them themselves.

All of this was realized in the few seconds it took Yusuke to think of a plan. A weak plan, yes, but a plan nonetheless.

"Hiei! You're a lot faster than any of us! We'll hold the ceiling up while you flip the switch!" he ordered.

"Are you crazy!" Kuwabara snapped. "We can't trust him! He doesn't care about any of us!"

Ah, if only the human knew exactly how untrue that was. He could have sworn he heard Kurama snicker before he answered. "You're ugly friend has a point. I've already vowed my revenge – perhaps I'll settle that now."

Yusuke grinned at him, and Hiei couldn't help but feel slightly discomfited at that. "Yeah, but I don't think quick deaths are your deal." he teased. Turning serious, he added, "I'll let out all the spirit energy I have left to buy us some time while you get to the switch." His hands started to glow as he pushed up. Still, Hiei hesitated, taking in the amount of power Yusuke was putting out. Perhaps it would be enough.

/I'll be fine. Go!/

"I trust you." Yusuke said at the same time as Kurama made his mental plea.

But Hiei didn't care about trust.

He darted out from underneath the gate and materialized beside the switch. With a smirk, he reached up to flip it. It was almost too easy.

A chill ran down his spine. It is too easy. If he touched the switch, something was going to happen. Something bad, and Hiei couldn't tell what. Would flipping the switch just make the ceiling fall faster? Or would something else happen, perhaps to him? He didn't know, and until he did, he wasn't going to touch the switch. He could faintly hear Yusuke and Kuwabara yelling at him as he turned to look back at Kurama. The fox demon nodded. So he realized it too.

"There's no need to make snap judgments. What have they ever done for you? Leave them, and come with me into the castle."

Scowling slightly, Hiei almost tuned out the winged eyeball. After all, it wasn't like it was telling him anything important. He wasn't hesitating out of reconsideration. He was trying to figure out why his instincts were screaming at him to not touch the switch even as Kurama sank a little further under the weight of the ceiling. His hand clenched into a fist.

Kurama's voice, low and strained. /It knows./

The guardian of the gate continued to taunt him, but now Hiei was starting to listen. He let out a small chuckle.

"A wise choice. The boulder would have crushed you anyway." the bat exulted.

Finally! Hiei sprang into the air, drawing his sword and slashing across the eyeball in one fluid motion. "Thanks for the clue!" As the bat fumbled around helplessly, Hiei flipped the switch.

"He came through!" Yusuke shouted happily.

Kurama slumped for a second, then caught sight of the boulder. Yusuke cried out as the boulder slammed down on top of Hiei, and Kurama stiffened. /Hiei!/

/I'm fine, fox./

Kurama breathed a sigh of relief as they crawled out from under the ceiling. Hiei was standing on top of the boulder, sword drawn, glaring down the injured bat. "Tell your masters this is their last chance to beg for mercy." he snarled. He jumped down from the boulder and faced the others.

"I knew you'd come through for us." Yusuke said with a grin.

Hiei scowled. "Don't mistake my actions. I only saved you because I might need you in the future." he snapped, turning his back on the humans. He could still sense Kurama's smile, though.

/Thank you, Hiei./

Hiei snorted. /The things I do for you, fox./ he muttered. Kurama simply laughed in his mind, and Hiei couldn't completely suppress a smirk. Sure, the fox drove him crazy sometimes, but that's what brothers do.


AN: Eh, hopefully that's not too horrible. It was a rabid plot bunny that bit my leg and wouldn't let go until I wrote. I need my leg. I got karate tomorrow. Review, please!