Twisted Paradise

Act 1: The End?

Disclaimer: Rurouni Kenshin- not mine.

Notes: Mwa ha ha. Here's my contribution to curing post-Seissouhen Depression Syndrome! I expect this is not going to have any particular plot, being that it will be a series of one-shots strung together. Expect some OOCness. But I think this should help some of us depressed authors out there! **WARNING! CONTAINS SEISSOUHEN SPOILERS!**

"KAORU! KENSHIN!" Yahiko's voice cracked as he spotted the pair lying entirely too still among the sakura. His shout soon attracted the others, and in short order Tsubame, Kenji and Megumi joined him. Everyone held their breath, fearing the worst, but hoping for the best, while Megumi checked the two still figures. After a moment, the lady doctor shook her head.
"They're both-" She started, unable to finish around a tightening in her throat. She didn't need to finish her sentence. Everyone knew what she meant. Kenshin and Kaoru had been reunited after so long, only to die in eachother's arms.

Unknown to the living, they were being observed. The entire experiance of death hadn't been at all what anyone could have predicted. If anyone had asked, they would have been told that dying hadn't been any sort of horrible experiance, no judgement, no nothing. It would have been compared to falling asleep feeling weak and tired, and waking up shortly thereafter fully refreshed.
"Do you think they'll be alright?"
"I think so."
"What should we do now-?"
"Well...." A mischievious grin stole across the face of one of the two ghosts. "I think we should let them grieve for now, and go find out what we can do..."
"Oh, come on, Shinta!" The spirit formerly known as Kaoru tugged on her companion's arm, dragging the redhead along. "I can already think of a few things we might be able to do, and there's more than a few people I wouldn't mind haunting!"
"But Kaoru-dono! We only just died! Don't you think we should wait a little while-?" The spirit formerly known as Kenshin (but now known as Shinta, after all, ghosts can't be swordsmen!) tried to protest.
"Wait for what? I don't think Kami's going to just appear and say 'Okay, now you two spirits can go wandering!'" Kaoru experimentally floated into the air, giggling at the experiance.
"Oro..." Shinta watched as his wife waited impatiently for him. Momentarily forgetting that gravity no longer had any claim on him, he braced himself and leapt into the air. After all, all his previous experiance of 'flight' could be defined as 'jumping really high into the air to perform Hiten Mitsurugi Ryuu'. Kaoru fell over laughing as her redheaded husband shot into the air and past her, at a much higher rate of speed than he must have been expecting, given the extended "Oroooooooooo!" that faded into the distance.
After the redhead returned from his unexpectedly high flight, the two watched in slightly morbid fascination as the dead bodies were hauled off. Kenji and Yahiko both appeared ill at ease, glancing around.
"Yahiko-kun..." Kenji glanced at the young man. "Something's not right..."
Yahiko glanced over at the redheaded youth and nodded slightly. "It still feels like they're here?"
Kenji nodded. "Maybe it's just my imagination..."

Kaoru leaned against Shinta and watched her son and her student. "Shinta?"
"Mm?" the redhead replied, his face currently in her hair as he cuddled her close.
"If they can sense our presence... who else do you think could?"
"I'm sure we'll find out." He murmured in her ear with a slight grin. He already had some interesting ideas of his own. "But I can immediately think of some people in Kyoto I'd like to try it out on..."
Kaoru snickered. Who would have thought being dead could be so much fun? "After things are taken care of here, we can go have the time of our afterlives."
"Mmhmm." Shinta replied, turning Kaoru to face him and giving her a brief kiss.

Authors notes: Presenting the first in a series of one-shots... post-Seissouhen... and comedy, to boot! How much mayhem can two ghosts cause in Kyoto? Probably lots and lots and lots. And what about certain other dead folks? Tomoe? Shishio? Hrm? If our rurouni and his tanuki-onna are turned loose, wouldn't it be a safe bet that some other infamous dead guys are similiarly loose? All this and more will be answered in upcoming one-shots! Stay tuned!