Genres: alternative universe, fantasy, adventure and a bit of bromance
Lavi Bookman and Yuu Kanda belong to Katsura Hoshino
Leaves and twigs were shaking and snapping, forced aside to make way for the traveller who fought stoutly to follow the small jungle track. Gasping and occasional swearing followed astern of the safari-shorts clad man, and if you saw him you'd probably pity him for his apparel. Not the shorts, no, they looked stylish on him in fact. It was his hair. Long no-longer-silky black hair, tied in a ponytail in some sort of vain attempt to tame it. It looked as if it contained more foliage than the rest of the forest. Sticks and leaves sticking out everywhere.
"These twigs are fucking out to get me, what the fuck is this, fucking fuck, motherfucker—" he uttered ingeniously, proving his superior human intelligence to the rest of the beasts of the jungle.
"You alright down there?" came another voice from up ahead; a voice that should have sounded concerned, but instead sounded gleeful. The poor, sorely tried adventurer looked up only to see the man ahead of him wearing a smile bigger and brighter than Big Ben on New Year's Eve. The black haired was about to yell 'fuck you,' but opted for a more creative exclamation:
The leading one, Lavi, chuckled, "Are you mad, Yuu? Well it is December; it's winter and snowy and dark and cold and—" Yuu rolled his eyes "… dreary and frosty and at home your house is snowbound."
"Well then it's great that you took me to the other freaking side of the earth."
"Oh come on, Cambodia is nice, isn't it?" When Kanda had caught up, Lavi steadily started climbing again, keeping his companion close behind.
"I didn't quite expect this many twigs." Kanda tried his hands at multitasking, moving forward and keeping an eye on his surroundings while removing dead pieces of jungle from his hair. "But I guess this is better than sitting at home and staring into a wall." For Yuu, that sentence is extremely enthusiastic. Lavi smiled happily to himself.
Kanda soon gave up on saving his hair. Instead he concentrated on following Lavi's skilled guidance and looking around at the rainforest that surrounded them. It was marvellous, to say the least. Far, far above their heads, the foliage created a bright green roof, letting little to no sun through. Roots, plants, branches and moss covered the ground so that he never even got to see the earth beneath. All around them stood rugged and twisted trunks overgrown with other plants, towering straight trees with vines that seemed to create a giant web of greenery. Intricate bushes spread their giant leaves and carried bombastic flowers with colourful petals. It was an extraordinary mishmash of green, with sounds and smells he would never forget. Lavi had taken him to a magic place. In here was a tranquillity he had never experienced before.
They had been walking for a very long time, and after three hours Lavi sat down at the foot of a tree and pulled out a water bottle from his rucksack. It was truly a salvation he spoke Khmer, for the last village they had been in was not used to tourists, and finding a merchant who sold bottled water proved to be a problem. They'd worked it out, though. Kanda sat down too, finding his own supply in his bag.
They were sweaty and comfortable. They said no words; the air was like a still pond, and conversation would break its silent surface. Lavi folded his hands behind his head and leaned back, the posture he always seemed to strike when he was relaxing. Mostly Lavi was a lazy boy, but now he seemed contently exhausted. Kanda had been surprised at first. The first few days in Cambodia had been both hectic and exiting; so many things were completely alien to him. Yet Lavi just laughed and said a lot of gibberish in Khmer and Hindi, so Kanda would get annoyed and yell at him. He talked to the locals, found cheap hotels, and told Kanda which dishes were spicy. He was extremely easy about travelling, and if there was one thing he was not, it was lazy. Lavi jumped around and wanted to know everything in, and he told Kanda so many things Kanda never would've imagined.
Kanda was glad to see this Lavi. Not the Lavi that would sit at home at his desk and fret over his homework. Not the Lavi looking sulkily out the window at a landscape filled with snow and brown slush left by bypassing cars.
Now, Kanda was almost just as jumpy. One of the mornings, when they had breakfast at an inn, he'd caught himself laughing when the merry old landlady was scolding and making fun of her husband. He was observant like never before; by god, he was downright madly curious. He soaked up all the things Lavi taught him about the Khmer and the animals of the jungle, he pointed at strange spices or symbols and commanded that Lavi told him all about it. Kanda was attentive.
He was thinking, maybe Lavi was also glad to see this Kanda.
It had been no more than five minutes of peaceful rest before Kanda rose as said he needed to go take a piss. Lavi just waved dismissively with his hand. "Don't step in anything poisonous," he smiled with closed eyes. Kanda left with a half-hearted retort.
The forest floor was a field of big glossy leaves reaching Kanda's calves. It didn't really matter where you pissed, this jungle was probably as unpopulated as can be, and he was pretty sure the animals didn't care. He faced a tree and zipped down to do his business.
Kanda stiffened. Alright, so he was used to strange sounds by now, but that was be—
Croooack... Rebbet crroack…
That! Was beyond strange. Furthermore, it was right behind him. Kanda held his breath, all ears. He carefully zipped up, and turned slowly around. The sight that met him was something that would make even Alice in Wonderland shit fucking whales. While turning his head slightly towards where he'd left Lavi, he kept his eyes fixed on the thing, making sure it didn't move.
The voice was strained, almost whisper.
"Lavi, come here for a sec."
He heard Lavi moan and rustle, and he heatedly shushed him. Lavi appeared beside him and opened his mouth to say something, until he saw it. He stood dead still.
"Lavi. Is that a fucking frog?"
They both glared at the frog(?)
"Is that a fucking frog that is bigger than a fucking washing machine?"
The giant frog croaked once again.
"And… Is it wearing a fucking fez?"
He tore his eyes away from the monstrosity to look at his accomplice. Lavi's single eye was about the good size of a teacup. And Kanda, despite the situation, barked a laugh, because he had never seen Lavi so surprised before.
Lavi managed to speak. "Yuu… I think that's a giant frog with a fez."
Kanda was about to say something really smart like 'oh?' but he was interrupted.
"Croack. Good afternoon, my name is Rebbet."
A burning piano falling from the sky could not have made the two boys more shocked. And honestly? If a frog with a fez said good afternoon to you, you'd crap yourself as well.
21. December 2010
'Jadu Jangala' is Hindi for 'Magic Jungle'. I know they speak Khmer in Cambodia, but whatevs.
Happy winter solstice! I actually said I'd update my other fanfiction, IMNS, today, but alas, I've been sick and lying immobile in my bed the past five days. So here's something else. Will be updated irregularly; I have no plans for further chapters actually. It'll come though, I thoroughly enjoyed writing this.