Not funny. Not funny at all. But – as the Clio says – not that sad, too.
Just un-optimistic. A translation of my fic
Once dedicated to Clio S.S. and now translated by her, for what I once again thank her with all my heart.
I 'm review-beggar, yes, So, feed me!
Blue coat. Unfriendly cloak, snatched from the porch. Worn blanket. All this - whirled, warmed and set in the ungodly image of the landscape after the battle.
A belt poking mischievously from under this pile, curled sleepily and proudly presenting the marks of teeth on its edge. The tails of the inhospitably rough cloak had fallen down, in the recent wrestling trod down into the spacious nest, radiating warmth.
He radiated warmth.
He was lying in the centre of the improvised bed, prone, his head turned funnily aside, cheek on the lapels of coat, mouth open; like always, he was taking the breath with his whole chest. Outspread, his arms wide - in reality and in dreams, extended to embrace a new adventure.
Every adventure was new.
Smooth, soft and warm. He had several scars, many bruises, some new marks on his skin after the last night, and wider, idiotic, happy, endearing smile, visible on the exposed part of his mouth. The edge of the blanket, pulled over the appetizing buttocks and the left thigh, slid off the calf and revealed the heel, sometimes childishly kicking in dream - memory - passion.
Wild as a heart of fire.
He had never had enough, even now he hadn't - his fingertips scratched the mat, even in sleep seeking for the other's hands that were sinfully skilled and maliciously elusive like a moonlight. His arms twitched. A strand of hair, tightly plaited, moved onto the hot back. A smile vanished for a twinkling - for one sulky mutter of hunch that there was no other person beside.
He kept sleeping.
Satiated, happy, greedy and generous, young and ardent. He had never had enough. Of adventure, of delight, of pleasure. Of bathe in the sharp silver and gentle shadow of the moonlight. Of anything. He experienced, offered, received - until the dawn finally put him to sleep, pressed in the cloak and embraced by the possessive arms. And he hadn't had enough and would never have had enough. He slept, rejoiced, radiated warmth and, already unaware, sought for that other touch with every instinctive twitch of fingers - again. Again and again, and more. Satiety and happiness, and insatiability.
Fire bloomed most beautiful in the moonlit nights.
He had already had shoulders like a tiger - perhaps not like Takeda yet, but there wasn't much left of the immature puss. These smiles, maybe, always pugnacious; this plait, maybe, thin and tight, softly tickling the curve of the neck when you embraced the arms of the Tiger's Cub from behind while he was dozing off. Maybe he was still as restless as a puss, always rapid and impulsive, and ardent - headlong, nose-dive, deadly.
Maybe it was what enchanted most in him.
Or maybe it was only - even - that fervour of the flame that Sanada Yukimura was every moment and every adventure; fire that blazed and burnt so far neglected independence of his companion. Satiated and happy, always ready for more, Yukimura slept.
He might grow shoulders like Takeda Shingen, he might grow into a man, he might become staid - yet he would always remain this incurable puss. The Dragon of Date was sitting on the mat, next to their shared, now battered, bed. Moonmocking gaze, with a tender malice, feasted on the tasty prospect of the bare back of the sleeping one.
Warm and soft.
Date Masamune knew all too well Yukimura's hard and strong fists, biting kicks, blows that merrily crushed everything - and this firm, zealous grip of his warm thighs on the Dragon's hips. You couldn't disregard, disallow, disrespect undoubtedly mature manhood of the young Tiger - especially that the One-Eyed Dragon delighted in initiating him into its secrets himself. And that flame - fervour that Date tasted, savoured, fed on and depleted ravenously until there was nothing left but the sleepy spark - for more, for later. Until the Puss of Kai softened and got warm, and fell asleep uncritically happy, deadly satiated under the inky blue gaze and shadow of the crook smile of the Dragon.
For these sights Date was never first to fall asleep.
And, after all, there would be time to get enough sleep before resuming the patrol. Or to doze in the saddle. He would get enough sleep, for sure; Kojuurou would see to this. Otherwise, he wouldn't let him go anywhere. And now - how could he miss such views? Warmed neck, shoulder blades, sides or, here, this hollow over the right hip that was an open invitation to - something. The very fact of Sanada Yukimura's existence obliged Date Masamune to sink the claws into him. Usually the One-Eyed Dragon believed that pleasure took precedence over the duties, but in case of the Tiger's Cub of Kai all the priorities focused on one thing only. And duty was fulfilled very meticulously.
Really, Kojuurou should be proud of him.
Masamune winced and shook his head. All six katana lay on his lap; he took one of them, holding between two fingers right below the hilt. The tip of the sword stopped lightly on the hip of the sleeping one.
Gently, tenderly, the blade moved over warm skin. Up and down, and up. The One-Eyed Dragon leaned down - katana stopped on Yukimura's throat, just below the unconscious, happy smile. He didn't even stir - his arms still wide open, welcoming every new impulse. Under the claw of the Dragon the wild, insatiable flame was sleeping.
No word, no smile, Date Masamune got up. He took the swords and, with deliberate carelessness, flung them into the corner, onto the hakama, yesterday hastily rolled up. The next moment the Dragon of Oushuu was already sitting on the porch, wrapped in the yukata, dozing in the chilly light of the dawn. The day seemed ideal for the horse patrol: icy, bright and clear. The steps of heavy boots faded discreetly behind the general's back.
Blanket was warm - sooo warm. Thick fabric was wrapped around the Dragon's back, and the patient fingers pulled up the yukata that slid down.
Muttering, Date Masamune made himself comfortable in the blanket - his ruffled hair fell down on his face, tickling. He sneezed and blinked. Then he turned his head, looking up at his adamant second-in-command.
"I feel good." The dark eyes were looking somewhat desperately and... guilty? "I feel good, Kojuurou."
Firm hands with hardened knuckles didn't twitch, calmly adjusting the blanket on the general's shoulders.
"That's good," Kojuurou said simply.
Inky blue gaze examined him for a moment, anxious, looking for a shade of reproach. Katakura Kojuurou looked back as always: bright and impassive. After all, he had never imposed his shadows on the general - neither in look, nor anywhere. He wasn't here for this. Masamune calmed down, relaxed, smiled - almost unintentionally.
"It'll be alright." He shook his head, almost in disbelief. "It'll be alright."
Kojuurou rarely smiled. One indulgent, bright grimace, summed up with the familiar scar, was enough to fill the Lord if Oushuu with warmth even this morning. Warmth was good. Warmth remembered him Sanada Yukimura's tigrish hugs.
That unmatched Sanada Yukimura.
Date's eye-lashed fell, his burning cheeks flushed even more from, still alive, memories. Kojuurou bent and, once more, pulled the blanket over his commander's left shoulder. Of course it would be alright. The Right Eye of the Dragon would see to it personally.
"That's something big."
Kojuurou lifted his brows. This he knew perfectly.
"It's really something. Just like this. Deadly."
"He won't kill me now." The corner of his lips twitched, as if regretting the wasted chance of the final fight to the death. As if excited over the thought of the future countless battles. Kojuurou kept silent. After all, death had always been the least worry of the Oushuu Dragon. It was him, Katakura Kojuurou, who had to worry about it.
He was worried.
Just because he knew, understood and was sure that death was the least problem between Sanada Yukimura and Date Masamune, he was worried the most. Because the death was the least harm that could be done to the Date Dragon.
"He will never kill me." Masamune smiled lazily. "Damn it, I feel good! Good, good, good! Party's on!"
He stretched himself in the blanket, enjoying the warmth of the cover. Mischievous flash in his eye, the blush and moon-wolf smile, and his hair ruffled by someone's unsatiated hand.
Such a view was heart-breaking.
Kojuurou embraced the scene with one of his rare smiles - peaceful, sincere and joyless. His heart couldn't be broken, even by such an appetizing view. Long ago, far away on the dumb field of turnip, the ridiculous dragon midget had eaten it alive. And had never given it back.
"I feel good. I feel so damn good. Just look when I turn unbearable."
Kojuurou's brow went up again. He would yet turn? Really. Well. Katakura Kojuurou would bear everything.
"So, everything will be alright... And deadly... And all, you know."
He knew, he did.
"He's exceptional, you know."
"He is... serious. About everything, always. About me. He takes it all seriously. Deadly. And he will never kill me. Never. Never."
"And I'm unbearable."
The blanket fell down when Date Masamune turned and faced his second-in-command - looking up at him, smiling crookedly. Unbearable.
"Will you kill me once he gets bored of me?"
Kojuurou lowered his eyes, not that touched. Long ago he'd had to become immune to his general's whims had he not wanted to turn utterly grey. And the One-Eyed Dragon preferred the light-brown haired men... Ha. Without a word, he walked round his sitting commander and wrapped him in the blanket again. He stood where was his place - behind the Dragon's back.
Date, smiling serenely, rested his head against Kojuurou's knees. The latter raised his brows, looking at the general's hair thoughtfully. As usual, he was tempted to attack them with the scissors. But, then again, they were tempting by their very nature.
Katakura Kojuurou was a simple man. Or, relatively simple - and definitely complicated by his own stupidity. But, well, stupidity was like a flood of the couch grass - and you could live with this pretty well. Kojuurou had never forgotten - hadn't even thought to forget - where he had come from. He had been brought up by the fields; for a long time he hadn't even looked out of his uncritical beds of turnip. It might have as well stayed for ever - only that one day the fate itself had waltzed right into Kojuurou's neatly weeded life. He had come, just like that, right from the cold palace full of opaque screens and stabbing murmurs. His gaze provocative and distrustful - and never indifferent. Straightening his back proudly, curious like a boy, capricious, kind and ridiculous. He had crunched a turnip like any boy of his age. He had never asked for anything; he had never shown those first scars he had got out of home. It had taken him pathetically little to appropriate Kojuurou for good.
And only the turnip had lain fallow.
Always something - someone was left behind. It could happen to anyone. Even the greatest forces leaked through the fingers - wind, rain or sun. Silverness of a moon - or a wild fire.
Sanada Yukimura, rain and wind, and fire. Delight and an unknown. Katakura Kojuurou had never been neither a delusive dream nor a mystery. It was not what he was there for. Only a permanence - voluntary and consecutive choice. But Kojuurou made only final choices. He had chosen one path, marked by the dragon's claws. And what he chose he could always take care of properly.
"If he hurts you, I'll kill."
Masamune winced, amused. The answer didn't make him happy, but he had to be satisfied with it. Apparently, it had to be like this: Kojuurou could satisfy him absolutely - and was never able to make him happy.
"If he hurts you, I'll kill," he repeated calmly.
The blue eye looked up at him.
"But first you'll kill me?"
The One-Eyed Dragon nestled in the blanket.
"You see? I'm already unbearable. Totally unbearable. I do something like this to you. And you still bear me. You see yourself."
Kojuurou saw everything.
"And if he gets bored of me, you will kill me."
The knee supporting the general's head didn't stir. It wasn't there for this. The Dragon's orders were unarguable. Masamune didn't expect the arguments of his Right Eye. He only needed, like usual, discreet and tender, and unfailing push in the right way. Kojuurou's eyes went to the improvised doss and the outline of Sanada's hair, visible behind the screen. Katakura-san allowed himself a light smile, then focused his gaze on his general's fringe.
"I know, I know. Okay, no need to argue. I'll have a haircut after the lunch." Date curved his lips reluctantly. Kojuurou tilted his head thoughtfully.
"There's no hurry," he said merely. "I'll cut your hair in a free time, once you're... after the dessert."
The One-Eyed Dragon's smile could tame any fire demon. And break a heart. Katakura Kojuurou folded hands behind his back, unmoving.
If he hurts you, I'll kill.
"Who will kill me once I'm tired of this all?" he threw bitterly. Date Masamune tilted his head back; his thick fringe fell onto Kojuurou's thigh.
"You won't do this to me," he claimed, smiling lightly.
A shudder. A serious, reproaching grimace.
"You won't do this to me," the general repeated calmly. Long ago had he ceased apologizing for being alive.
"I won't." Kojuurou had never thanked his commander for having appeared in his life. But he would do it one day.
If he hurts you, I'll kill.