Okay, ladies and gents... Here's a story I've been working on for a little while and was planning on putting up before all my little issues started rearing their ugly heads. I figured I'd post it up to keep you occupied until the rest of my stories have been updated... Enjoy!
This is an AU Yu Yu Hakusho fan fiction. The only two characters from that series that are going to be in this story are Hiei and Youko Kurama. It is set in present day and Youko never took up residence in Suichi Minamino's body. He and Hiei are friends and partners, very notorious thieves in the Demon World. While escaping demon bounty hunters, they use their energy to enter Human World and wind up becoming separated in a raging blizzard...
I do not own Yu Yu Hakusho.
Scant seconds after being blinded by a field of white in his vision, Youko felt his left hind leg snap and an intense shooting pain ran through his body. Then he landed in an awkward position upon a blanket of white snow in a horrendous blizzard. The snow was falling tremendously and the wind was making the already frigid air feel all that much colder. He was relieved at the moment that he was in his Fox Form. He didn't think that he'd be able to handle it as well as he was if he'd taken on his humanoid shape before coming here.
The fox took a moment to try and catch his breath, wincing as the cold air seemed to cut straight into his lungs with each intake, and then took in his surroundings. He soon found that such efforts were useless in this weather as the snow was falling so heavily he could only see six or seven feel around him. However, as he looked above himself he found the reason for his broken leg... a large tree. His leg must have hit it after he had gone through his portal. He sniffed the air and his eyes flared red briefly in his frustration. The cold had made his acute sense of smell completely and utterly useless. And he could hear nothing but the howling of the wind.
He took stock of his current situation. He was freezing cold, the weather very effectively crippling his sense of sight, smell, and hearing. The energy he had exerted in order to fight, escape his pursuers and open the portal had drained him significantly, and his leg was injured. In spite of his efforts to keep himself composed, he started to shiver as the biting wind and snow made it past his fur, leaving him to try and cover himself with his five tails. It did very little to help stave off the cold.
Hiei? He called out in his mind. After waiting several minutes and receiving no answer, the kitsune elicited a rare sigh. The fire demon would have the ability to keep him warm, if he were near. Unfortunately, that did not seem to be the case. They had been separated in all the confusion. And chances were that Hiei was just as drained of his energy as the fox himself was.
It would be difficult to recover when he was immobile, but it could be even more dangerous to wander around when he could hardly see what was in front of him. Glancing down at his leg, he saw the break was severe, a small hint of white bone sticking out amongst the fur. At least the cold would help to prevent infection... not that that was much of a concern in the first place. He could possibly walk on three legs, but with his energy depleted the way it was, he felt it would be in his best interests to remain where he was and hope Hiei located him with his Jagan Eye. He silently hoped it would be soon. Although his leg would heal in only about a day and a half or so, he didn't relish the thought of rebreaking it so he wasn't burdened with a limp.
So, resigning himself, the fox curled up into as tight a ball as he could to fight off the cold and started to wait.
Time crawled by slowly, despite the kitsune's efforts to ignore the howling wind and the horrifically cold temperature. He would occasionally shake his fur to keep from becoming completely buried in the snow, before he would settle down once more. He wasn't sure if hours had gone by or only minutes, but finally something caught his attention.
Suddenly, in addition to the howling wind, Youko heard the crunching of footsteps in the snow, and it sounded as if it was coming closer. The fox stiffened. Without his sense of smell, he was unable to discern if it was Hiei, but he realized that if it was his friend, the koorime would have called out to him telepathically before making an entrance. So the kitsune quickly looked in the direction the new arrival was coming from, hoping it wasn't the demon hunters being even more stubborn than he had initially thought.
The figure slowly became visible, and it became evident that it most certainly was not Hiei. The figure was a few inches too tall, for one, and for another, there was no way his partner would be caught dead in such a bulky get up. Obviously it was a native to the area he now found himself in. Although that made him relax slightly, he refused to drop his guard.
The figure wore a light brown jacket that looked rather bulky, and the fox had the impression that there were several layers of clothes hidden underneath. Around his legs was another protective layer to protect from the cold... black pants and heavy boots to keep the snow from the wearers feet. The only thing he could make out of the face of this mystery man was his eyes, and even they were difficult to see with the onslaught of snow assailing his vision. A hood attached to the jacket was securely in place on his head, and he could see the front of another fabric hat that was on beneath it.. Across his face was a thick red scarf. Warm gloves protected the hands of the oncomer.
Youko quickly went over his possible means of defense in the event this human should seek to do him harm. Of course, even though his youki was severely depleted, he could still muster up enough of it to spring a deadly plant upon him. But doing so would leave the kitsune unconscious due to the energy drain. So that was something he didn't want to do. Such a thing would leave him completely defenseless. He wondered if he could muster up the strength to physically attack should the need come for such action. His claws and teeth would be more than enough to take care of this mortal, but what if friends or family noticed he was missing and sent out a search party? The fox was in no condition to take on a group, even if they were only humans.
Youko held his breath and waited, hoping the human was too engrossed in his trek to notice him.
No such luck. Seconds after that thought went through his mind, he heard a sharp intake of breath and saw the human had stopped in his tracks and was looking at the fox with wide eyes. He started forward immediately and the fox let out a loud growl of warning.
The human stopped and crouched down where he was, which was about five feet away from the kitsune's current position. The two of them regarded one another, another slightly softer growl escaping from the throat of the fox.
"Easy, big guy. I'm not going to hurt you," the human said, the scarf muffling the sound of his voice. "What happened? You look like you've got a broken leg there," he continued on in what Youko assumed was an attempt at a comforting voice. He came a little closer and the fox let out another growl.
"Easy, easy. It's okay," he said, raising his hands. The human was now only a few feet away from the fox and the kitsune glared into his eyes, trying to determine his intentions. He was met with a sea of blue.. "Let me try and help you, okay? I used to work as a vet and I've taken care of animals on a regular basis for the past three years. I've got supplies at my place, and I could have your leg set and you in a nice comfy environment in no time if you'd let me take you home with me."
The human slowly reached out, fully prepared to pull away should the fox try to take one of his hands off. Youko let out a continuous growl but froze the moment one hand gently touched the back of his neck. He could almost imagine the smile of relief on the humans face concealed beneath the scarf.
"There, you see? I'm not going to hurt you." The human took him in once more. "Hmmm. Larger than your average fox for sure, but I think I could handle the weight until we get to my house. I can't just leave you here, that's for sure! I'd never forgive myself if a beautiful creature like you froze to death."
Youko considered for a moment and frowned mentally. He would play along with this human for now, but the instant he made a wrong move, the kitsune would be standing over his bloodied corpse before he could blink. Being held in the arms of the human could actually work to his advantage in conserving his energy.
The fox went rigid and prepared himself for the pain, expecting the human to inadvertantly jostle his leg in the act of picking him up. But the human surprised him with the gentle and careful manner with which he took him into his arms, making sure the injured leg was out of harms way.
"Now let's get you to my place and take a look at that leg! It'll be nice to have company for once, even though you're not going to be much for conversation," he said in a somewhat cheery manner.
Youko breathed a mental sigh of relief. So the human lived alone. That would make things even easier for him. Once Hiei located him, the two of them could be rid of this pest and come up with a plan of their own.
The human continued on his way once more, this time holding a shivering kitsune in his arms. Youko scowled at himself for showing such pathetic weakness, but the cold wasn't leaving him much choice in the matter, and he didn't have the strength to warm himself with his youki. What body heat the human might be giving off was effectively locked in by the clothes he wore, so he had no relief there.
Frankly, the kitsune had no idea how the human knew where he was going. He walked for almost a half hour before turning and the fox could then see a light up ahead, made more clearly visible by the darkening skies. As they drew nearer, he saw a cozy looking home, smoke billowing out of a chimney and he couldn't help but feel a small measure of relief.
The man carefully repositioned the fox in his arms so he could open the front door and entered the home, leaning against the door with undisguised relief upon being safely inside the warm dwelling. He let out an immense sigh.
"Ah, blessed, blessed warmth! I'll bet you're happy to be out of that hellish weather! I was freezing myself in all these layers! I can't image how cold you must have been with only one!" After carefully setting fox down on some soft blankets in front of the fire place, he went toward the hearth and threw a couple logs on the smoldering embers to get a roaring fire going.
He stood up straight once more and stretched. "Wow! You're definitely heavier than I figured you'd be! Well, no rest for the weary. After I get out of these things, I'll see how your leg is and get you something to eat." He headed off toward a closet without another word and Youko took stock of his new surroundings.
It was one large room, with a short hall leading to what he assumed were the bedrooms and restroom. The room he was in right now had a dark brown wood on the walls, several pictures hanging upon it. Right in front of the fireplace was a couch for three or four people, and on one side of it was a large potted plant.
Youko grinned feraly. Good. If there was a plant in the house, then should his so called savior turn out to be a threat to him after all, he could easily use what little youki he had to dismember him with little effort.
Before he could examine the rest of the room, which seemed to be both a kitchen and a living room, his ears perked up when a huge sigh or relief sounded from by the closet. And he felt a jolt of shock go through his system with what he heard next.
"Ahhhh... Now that is much better!"
It wasn't the words that shocked him. It was that the voice was unmistakably female.
His surprise increased when the human came back into sight. Youko couldn't help it as the thought entered his mind.
His golden eyes were met with wide and expressive blue. A small lightly upturned nose, and wide mouth with full lips were framed by slightly tousled dark brown hair that billowed over her shoulders. She stood a few inches taller than Hiei and was currently unbuttoning a cream colored sweater, revealing a blue shirt beneath which, although was slightly loose, did nothing to hide her gorgeous body. Her breasts were a little larger than average, and she had a slender but athletic build. Her hips were wide, accentuated nicely by the snug blue jeans she wore.
When she looked at him, her lips formed a luxurious smile. Youko immediately decided that, were he in his humanoid form and not currently injured, he'd pounce on her.
"Okay, handsome, now that we're both relatively comfortable, why don't I take a look at that leg and get it set for you?" She came forward slowly in case he should be adverse to her approach. Youko didn't even growl this time, his mind still trying to compute the fact that his rescuer was female.
She sat down beside him, her face now scrunched in concern as she very gently reached out with long, slender fingers to examine his injury. He felt only the slightest shooting pain when she contacted him and he let out a low growl. She cast a quick glance at him and, once she was relatively sure that he wasn't going to lunge at her and tear her throat out, she continued to examine his injury.
She winced noticeably. "Ooohhhh... Compound fracture. You poor thing. How'd you manage that one?" Then she smiled prettily at him. "Well, no worries. I can have you fixed up in no time. Just wait here while I get my supplies, handsome!"
As the kistune watched her make her way down the hall, he couldn't help but notice that the back was just as nice as the front.
Fox! Are you all right? If that onna did anything to you, I'll be more than happy to permanently remove her for you!
Youko perked up immediately upon hearing the voice enter his mind. Looking at a window to the left, he saw a set of red eyes looking in. Hiei! There you are! And she didn't do anything to harm me, although I'm not entirely certain of her intentions as of yet...
I'll determine that. We're not going to take any chances.
Outside the window, Hiei watched apprehensively as the woman reentered the room, carrying a metal box in her hands. She took her place beside the kitsune once more and started rummaging around inside it. She pulled out some splints, bandaging and a syringe.
Youko stiffened as she started filling the last item and let out a warning growl as she prepared it.
She blinked and then smiled at him. "No worries, handsome. All this is going to do is numb your leg so I can set the bone without it causing you pain. You'll get all the feeling back in your leg in just a couple of hours."
Hiei used his Jagan to delve into her mind and detected no deception. You can trust her in this, Youko. She has absolutely no desire to bring you harm.
Trusting in his friend's judgement, Youko settled down and allowed the woman to inject him with the syringe. She smiled once she did so and got to her feet.
"I'll take about ten minutes for it to fully kick in, so I'll get you something to eat while we wait. You must be hungry." She went to the fridge and dug around in it for a moment. Then she pulled out a container. "I'll give you some chicken," she said, grinning a little mischievously. "I made far too much for myself yesterday, and so you, as the guest of the house, get first dibs on the leftovers." She set it down on the table briefly as she filled another bowl with some water from the tap and then came forward, setting it down in front of him.
Realizing his was absolutely famished, Youko dug right in, much to the woman's delight.
She smiled at him warmly. "Glad you like it." Then she leaned back with a small sigh. "You may not be much of a conversationalist, but it is nice to have some company this time of year. The past three years it's all been the same: Mom and Dad go running off to some nice warm southern region, along with all the neighbors. Funny how they never did that before I quit my job as a vet and moved back here. But since I'm best qualified to take care of their animals while they're all gone on a nice winter vacation, I get to grit my teeth and bear the cold to watch over everything for them." She shrugged. "Not that I mind watching over them. I love animals, so why would I? It would just be nice if someone could actually come and visit with me once in a while. It sucks being out here by myself all the time. I don't even have a social life any more."
Her narrative was cut off by a large yawn. "Wow... it's been a long and tiring day. Let me just get your leg fixed up, and then I'll check to make sure you don't have any frostbite." She very carefully pressed on Youko's broken leg and, when he didn't even blink at the contact, she smiled in relief. She quickly set the bone in its proper place, positioned the splints, disinfected the open wound, and wrapped it securely. The fox had long since finished his meal and was currently watching her silently.
She smiled at him sweetly. "Okay, now to check your ears and tail for frostbite..." She went for the tail first and her eyes widened in obvious surprise. "Five tails?"
Outside the window Hiei stiffened while Youko prepared himself for the worst, but both were surprised at what she said next.
She shrugged after a moment. "I've seen stranger. Minor genetic defects are common in the animal kingdom, though this is the first time I've had a patient with one..." Then she started to examine his tails one by one. "Besides, somehow they make you even cuter. I'm surprised I never noticed them until now actually."
Youko frowned inwardly. Genetic defects?
Hiei shrugged from his perch outside the window. Just consider yourself lucky that she never made the real connection, fox. I would hate to have to kill her when she's in the middle of taking care of you.
Youko said nothing in response as the woman turned her attention to face him again, a gentle smile on her face.
"I'd like to check your ears and I'm hoping that since you just had a meal, that you won't feel inclined to bite my hand off." She carefully reached forward and, when Youko didn't so much as growl, she carefully prodded his ears with her soft hands. The fox was only barely able to keep himself from purring in delight, much to his partner's amusement.
Trying to keep yourself under control, Youko?
The fox inwardly growled in delight. If I were able to at the moment, I'd revert to my humanoid form and make her into a woman...
The girl pulled away after a couple of minutes and smiled at him. "You lucked out. No frost bite. I've gotta say, though, that you surprise me. You're easily the most cooperative patient I've had." Then she got to her feet and plunked down on the couch, grabbing a remote and turning on the television. She immediately changed the station to the weather network and after a few minutes of listening to the reports for other regions of the country, they got to her home province.
"And the Edmonton region is experiencing what historians are calling 'The Storm of the Century!' The snowfall and blizzard conditions are expected to continue throughout this week. Overnight, they can expect to receive another 30 cm of snow, and temperatures are expected to plummet to 37 below zero overnight..."
The woman moaned loudly hearing this and shut off the television. "Just great. Well, it looks like I'm in for a long day outdoors tomorrow. I have to shovel the snow off the front steps again and, since there's no way in hell I'm walking in three feet of snow, I'll have to dig in front of the entrance to the garage too. I'll be using the snowmobile. I just hope the damn thing is running properly..." Then she sighed and forced a smile on her face as she looked at Youko again. "I'm just gonna sleep here on the couch tonight. I wouldn't be a very good caregiver if I just up and left you alone, now would I? Goodnight, handsome." She fluffed a pillow on the couch briefly before reaching up to turn off a lamp on one of the side tables, and curled up into a ball, going to sleep almost instantly.
Youko, after waiting a few minutes to ensure she was truly asleep, looked to the window to tell Hiei to come inside, but was stunned when he already saw his friend leaning against the wall, his arms crossed. His head band was off, leaving his Jagan Eye exposed.
"She won't wake up. My Jagan will make sure of that. So, why don't you tell me what happened, fox? How the hell did you wind up in the company of this woman?"
Youko shrugged mentally. She came across me while I was injured and lying in the snow. To be perfectly honest, I didn't even know she was a female until she removed her clothes once we got here. She seemed genuinely concerned from the moment she saw me, and after considering the option of staying there, I decided to take a chance. After all, if she turns out to be a threat in the future, I can easily make use of that plant there and take care of her permanently. Although to do something like that would be a sad waste of a beautiful woman...
Hiei rolled his eyes. "You foxes and your hormones. If you want to fuck her, then it will have to wait until your energy is restored, and that won't happen until tomorrow night. Are you willing to play the dumb fox until then? Then we can get rid of her and get out of here."
Youko rolled his eyes. And go where? The hunters are probably still looking for us in Demon World, and we know next to nothing about Human World. The woman has proven herself trustworthy thus far... Why don't we reveal ourselves to her tomorrow night, tell her our situation and see if she can't be 'persuaded' to help us?
Hiei stared at him. "You're willing to put that much trust in some ningen onna after being with her for only a couple of hours? Have you lost your mind, fox?"
The kitsune looked at him evenly. Hey, if she doesn't want to go for it, or if she goes for it and proves to be less than honorable, then we'll just kill her and be done with it. It's not like someone like her will prove a challenge. And it's not like she knows how to get into contact with the hunters that were after us in the first place, so what can she do?
Hiei considered this for a moment. "I suppose you do have a point. But at the first sign of deception on her part, I'm lopping off her head." He looked at the sleeping woman for a moment, and then turned his attention back to the fox. "You realize she's going to be terrified of us."
Youko grinned. That fear will pass... provided SOMEONE isn't threatening to send her head rolling from the get go... or brandishing his sword in her face. Just leave the majority of the talking to me and things should go all right.
Hiei shrugged. "Hn. If you say so. Just hope you're not making a mistake, kitsune."
Youko didn't bother to reply as he carefully curled up into a ball, wrapping his tails around him, and went to sleep.
K, I'll put up the next chapter tomorrow. Tell me what you think!