Summary: 50 stories about Kenshin and Kaoru, sometimes meandering to include other members of the Ruroken cast. Mix of canon and AU one shots. Some crack.
Disclaimer: Anything you can recognize here belongs to Watsuki Nobuhiro.
Characters: Kenshin (Rurouni) and Kaoru
BIG Shout out to Queen Hermy Penguin for giving me much-needed pointers for this drabble series. I hope you like them!
Here we go!
"I know you're used to sleeping outdoors and its all fine but that's no excuse to sleep the same way when you're inside, is it? It is very cold at night so you'll need this," the girl bent over a wooden chest with battered edges and pulled out a clean blanket, which she promptly thrust in his direction even as she turned her attention back to the chest, carefully lowering the heavy top back to shut it. "And letting you stay won't mean anything if you turn into a frozen block by morning."
She pushed the chest back against the wall, catching herself as a soft grunt escaped her in her exertion. She straightened slowly, wiping her hands clean on her yukata and tuned to look at the scared looking redhead now clutching her blanket for all he was worth. She frowned. How could a man who tore through Gohei and his cohorts without breaking a sweat even own an expression like the one sitting on his face right now perplexed her.
He shuffled his feet, looking away. "Are you sure it's no problem if I stay?"
"Of course not!" Kaoru exclaimed loudly, regretting her loudness instantly as the man cringed, very subtly but it was a cringe nonetheless. Kaoru did some quick mental cringing of her own. She smiled softly. "You saved my life…and thanks to you, the name of my father and this dojo will never be sullied again. This is the least I can do for you."
Kenshin bent his head as she continued to talk, leading the way to "his room". He stood before the sliding door, wondering if he should go in or not; it was such a beautiful night. The moon was full, and the promise of rain hung in the air. He sighed. It was the sort of night where he would sit and stare at the sky till his eyes shut in weariness. It was the sort of night where he would allow all the ghosts of his past out to gather around him and smother him with their presence. He would reflect, remember, repent and once again envision the face of redemption.
But the girl seemed to have other ideas.
He had set the blanket at the foot of his futon and was just settling down to keep the moon company when the shoji of the room across his own opened and she stepped out. She had changed into another yukata. This one was worn, the color which once had been a rich blue was now faded. Her hair was contained in a loose braid and she looked just as surprised as him to find him outside.
"Is everything alright Kenshin? Did you need anything?" Her cobalt eyes grew wide and gathered her shawl around her shoulders tightly. She didn't even realize how easily she scattered the spectres of his past away. When something as vibrant as her stood before him, it was very hard to dwell on the dead, who wouldn't leave him alone otherwise.
He pulled his lips into a smile. What could he tell her? What would satisfy her? "Yes Kaoru-dono, I am fine. Just enjoying the moonlight."
She faltered as she noticed the formal honorific. "Oh. Well then, I'll leave you to it. Goodnight Kenshin."
"Goodnight Kaoru-dono." He watched as she turned her back to him and disappeared inside her room. Once again, he marveled at how trusting she was. A swordsman could have cut her down in the three seconds that she stood in front of her room, sliding the door open, didn't she realize that? She had left herself vulnerable to injury and death by being the person she was – trusting, believing in the inherent goodness of people, if such a thing existed, trusting in him. How did she manage to do this and live? Where did she find the strength to do it?
He shifted his position and drew one knew up to his chest. He rested his chin upon his knee, eyes half-shut and pensive. He forgot how long it had been. When he finally moved again, he realized how cold he was. Sighing, he stood and turned back towards the room, where a kind girl had seen fit to give him a futon and a blanket to stave away the cold. He blinked. She was like this blanket, shutting away the cold in his life by trusting him, by giving him a chance.
He wondered…perhaps he dared to hope for too much…but maybe, just maybe he had found the face of his redemption. He turned and let the blanket cover him completely.
Hmmm, okay I think I'll give me a 6 on 10 for this. I don't usually write Canon. Please let me know what you think! And send me prompts please!