Seed of Emotion
a "missing" scene from Yu Yu Hakusho
by Shawny Wong
Author's Note: Takes place at the end of manga ch. 24 (The Terrible Curse!) and anime ep. 8 (The Three Eyes of Hiei). Yusuke has just defeated Hiei and retrieved all three stolen artifacts.
Yusuke slumped in exhaustion and looked over at his companions. Kurama sat on the cold concrete floor of the warehouse. He had propped himself up against a large wooden crate and had one hand pressed against the wound on his abdomen to stem the bleeding. Botan was in much better shape, although there were shallow cuts on her hands from holding the demonic eye on Keiko's forehead closed.
If that eye had opened... Yusuke shuddered and abruptly cut off that line of thought.
"It's late. I'm going to take Keiko home. Will you two be okay?"
"I'm fine. As I said before, my injury isn't fatal," Kurama said.
"I called a team from the Reikai a few minutes ago. They'll be here soon to pick up the artifacts and arrest Hiei. You did a good job, Yusuke," Botan said with a smile. "Go ahead and take Keiko home."
Yusuke knelt and carefully hoisted the unconscious girl onto his back. He draped her arms around his neck, made sure that her head was resting comfortably on his shoulder, and hooked his hands under her legs. He staggered a bit as he stood up again. ("Girl needs to lose some weight," he muttered under his breath.)
"Later!" Yusuke casually called out over his shoulder as he walked away.
The easy camaraderie between Botan and Kurama faded with the sound of Yusuke's footsteps. Just minutes ago, they had been teasing Yusuke for his "dumb luck" in defeating Hiei, but... with Yusuke gone, an uncomfortable silence descended between them. For over a millenia, the Reikai (spirit world) and the Makai (demon world) had been fighting a cold war. At best, relations between the two worlds were tense and hostile. At worst, they were bloody and violent.
Long, awkward seconds stretched out into long, uncomfortable minutes.
Botan shifted uneasily. What's taking the team from Reikai so long to arrive?
"Um... Thank you, Kurama... for helping us."
"I didn't do it for you," he said neutrally. "I did it to repay my debt to Yusuke. We're even now."
"I know, but... Thank you, anyways."
Botan bit the inside of her cheek and wondered if... maybe she could... though she probably shouldn't... and yet... She slowly moved to Kurama's side and knelt beside him. Green eyes watched her warily.
"May I..." She took a deep breath. "May I see the wound?"
Kurama stared at her with a mixture of confusion and distrust. What was this spirit girl up to? He was injured, but not helpless – and he still had several tricks up his sleeve. He moved his hand away from the injury. The front of his uniform was covered in blood. He hissed in pain when the spirit girl unfastened it and lifted the shirt underneath to fully expose the stab wound.
Though he had experienced worse in his long life as a fox demon, this was by far the worst injury of his human life.
"How do you feel?"
He shrugged (and instantly regretted it).
"It hurts like hell," he said truthfully.
Kurama silently called forth some youki, in case he needed to protect himself. The many seeds hidden in his red hair twitched in reaction. Then he waited to see what she would do, mentally preparing himself to expect anything. The spirit girl lifted her hands to hover several inches above the wound and ...
What the-?! Kurama blinked, almost unable to believe his eyes. He wondered briefly if he was hallucinating from the loss of blood. Well, that was unexpected.
The spirit girl was healing him.
"Why are you-?"
"I don't know."
She didn't know! Technically, she wasn't supposed to be doing this. Waste healing spirit energy on a demon? What a ludicrous thought! And it wasn't as if she owed him. She didn't owe him. He'd said it himself: he'd simply been discharging a debt.
Botan continued to pour healing spirit energy into his body, significantly speeding up the human body's natural healing process. The sluggish bleeding slowed to a stop. Additional spirit energy revived dying cells and encouraged them to grow and split. Torn tissue regenerated and the muscles sliced by the Shadow Sword became whole again...
… and the wound gradually started to close.
It was an inexplicable urge. She didn't understand why, but... she wanted to help Kurama.
"Stop," he ordered sharply. "Botan, stop."
Botan frowned and blinked several times. How strange. For some reason, her vision was blurry and she couldn't seem to focus on his face.
Kurama took her hands and pushed them away.
"You're using up too much reiki. You're going to hurt yourself if you keep going."
Oh. So that was why her vision refused to focus.
She'd almost forgotten how much spirit energy she had already expended earlier that evening. Keeping the demonic third eye from opening on Keiko's forehead had been extremely difficult – especially after Hiei had released his true form. She'd depleted her reiki even before she'd started healing Kurama.
Botan fell back on her bottom completely exhausted. She was so tired that she didn't think she could stand. Instead, she managed (barely) to scoot over to sit by Kurama's side. They sat shoulder to shoulder, leaning back against the crates in the warehouse.
Another silence descended between them. However, this time, the quiet surrounding them was... nice, almost... friendly.
Kurama examined his injury. Instead of a hole in the stomach and constant, debilitating pain, he now had a nasty multi-colored bruise that only ached if he applied pressure to it. It was a definite improvement.
What was it about human boys and spirit girls that made them so reckless... and so selfless? He wondered. In less than one week, both had been willing to sacrifice for him – even knowing that he was a demon! Yusuke had offered to give up half his life so that Kurama could live. The spirit girl, Botan had given up more spirit energy than she could really afford – a dangerous thing for a spiritual entity.
"Thank you, Botan."
Kurama glanced over at her when she didn't respond and sighed in exasperation. She'd fallen asleep, with her head on his shoulder, wispy strands of sky blue hair tickling his nose and cheek.
Human boys and spirit girls? They were entirely too reckless (and selfless) for their own good! They needed someone with sense to keep an eye on them.
Kurama groaned and banged the back of his head against the wooden crate several times.
Hiei was right. He was going soft. The seed of emotion that tied him to his human mother was sprouting; it was taking root in his heart and growing rapidly. His mother... then Yusuke... and now... Botan. He couldn't leave them. He couldn't go back to the Makai anymore.
He was going soft, but somehow...
Kurama didn't mind at all.
I'm a huge Kurama x Botan fan. I know it's a crack pairing, but I still love it. There's almost no evidence supporting Kurama x Botan in the manga/anime. So some years ago, I had this crazy idea to "canonize" my favorite crack pairing by creating a series of "missing" scenes that would take place in between scenes of the YYH anime/manga. Crazy, yeah? ^^;
This was the first "missing" scene that I came up with and how how I envision the start of a Kurama x Botan friendship that might lead to more... eventually!
I never got around to writing those "missing" scenes. Too busy with other stuff, I guess! But recently, I offered to write a drabble for ferrywoman (on Live Journal) and she asked for a Kurama x Botan drabble/ficlet. So I wrote this for her.
ferrywoman: I hope you like it!
Q: Will I write more of these Kurama x Botan "missing" scenes?
A: I don't know. Maybe. I want to, someday, but I have a lot of other writing projects that I'm more interested in working on at the moment. So... Updates (if I update) will be very slow. Future "missing" scenes will be added as chapters to this fic.
Random Musing: It's mentioned a few times in the manga/anime that Botan has limited healing powers. We don't see her using them very often though. I wonder why?