The Goblin King
Noriaki and Sanosuke stood in one of the study rooms, watching their aunt go back and forth between books before she nodded and stopped in front of them. "Alright." She began, snapping the book in her hand shut. "I think I may have found a way to use the fairy dust in order to cure the orcs, but…" she sighed. "I need a test subject."
The elder Uchiha smirked, feeling his pride swell. "So you want us to go and get you an orc?"
"And do you want the damage kept to a minimum?" Sanosuke asked.
Satomi nodded. "I would prefer as little damage as possible. But of course, do what needs to be done. But make sure it's alive."
Noriaki nodded and turned to leave, unable to stop his victorious grin. The fact that he was being sent to capture an orc instead of Kai and Hideaki reignited his knowledge that he was in fact the best. "We'll be back as soon as possible." Sanosuke replied, following his brother.
The two walked down the hall, though Noriaki couldn't hold in his dark laughter. "Finally, those two ingrates are left in the dark."
"Is there a particular reason you don't like them?" the younger goblin sighed. "Other than the initial protectiveness over Iza and Ami."
"Of course." He scoffed. "Those two were pansy ass weaklings and then BAM, by some coincidence they became something that stupid father and Uncle Toshiro are calling 'the strongest creatures yet', and they've only been here for a little time and are already so trusted. It irritates me."
Sanosuke smirked. "You're just upset because your spotlight at being Uncle Itachi's successor was taken away so quickly." He pointed out.
Noriaki scoffed, not responding to his brother's obviously true statement. "Anyways, we should get this done quickly and show everyone we're still top notch."
"Alright. I have to tell Talia I'm leaving first, and then I will meet you at the front." He said as they ascended the stairs to the level where their rooms were, since they would need to get supplies.
The elder nodded and went off to his own room to say goodbye to his love as well. Sanosuke entered his room, smiling when he saw Talia sitting by the balcony, humming to herself as she worked on a cross-stitch of their names. She looked up at the sound of the door opening, a smile lighting up her always cheery face. "How's it coming?" he asked, walking over to her and looking down at her work.
"Pretty nice. It passes the time when I've nothing to do and you're off doing princely things." She giggled.
He smiled, before it fell. "Speaking of princely things, I'm going away for a while on an assignment."
Talia's light expression faltered, but her smile remained. "Oh…alright. When do you think you'll be back?"
"I'm not sure." He said, seeing her become even more displeased with the news. "Hopefully I will return in two days' time, maybe less. Noriaki is going with me, and we're pretty efficient."
"I hope so." She sighed, placing her cross-stitch aside and rising. "So what is it you have to go do?" she wondered, nervously smoothing out his clothes.
"Hunt down and capture an orc." Sanosuke told her, making her hands freeze against his chest. He placed his hands over hers. "Do not fret. Nothing bad is going to happen. Noriaki and I are good at what we do." He tried to assure her.
"But…" she trailed off. "Wh-what if something terrible happens and…and…they said Hideaki was bitten and got turned into one. What if that happens and you change too quickly for me to kiss you?"
He scoffed. "Talia, I am not so weak that I would lose myself the way they did." He said, reaching up and cupping her cheek. "They didn't have their mates when they began to turn, therefore they weren't as strong as I am now." He said with a small smile. "I would never allow myself to become something that scares you so much."
Talia nodded, leaning closer and kissing him. "I know. I just worry, because I love you so much."
"I know." He kissed her as well. "I love you too. I will try to return to you as soon as possible, I promise."
She smiled and enjoyed a bit more of his presence, kissing all over his face. "Be safe, I'll miss you so much."
"And I you." He said, kissing her one last time before pulling away. "Try not to get into any trouble while I'm gone." He smirked.
"I make no such promises." Talia grinned as she followed him back into their bedroom and watched him as he gathered the things he would need.
Sanosuke chuckled, glancing at her as he put together a pack and slung it over his shoulder. He walked back over to her and kissed her on the forehead. "See you when I get back." He murmured, turning and leaving the room before he got the urge to stay.
Hearing the sounds coming from his brother's room, he knew it would be a bit longer for his elder to join him. He rolled his eyes and went downstairs, having enough time to get the horses ready and strap on his gear to the animal before Noriaki came down the palace steps. "About time." Sanosuke said.
"What?" Noriaki grinned, mounting his steed and glancing over at his brother. "I don't know when we'll be back. I needed to be with my woman before heading off. Didn't you do the same?"
"Talia and I don't have to have sex as much as you two do in order to reaffirm that we love one another." He replied. "Besides, I doubt we'll be gone for more than a day."
"That's a day too long." He chuckled, whipping the reins as his horse took off with Sanosuke close behind. "We'll capture an orc and prove just how Uchihas continue to be the best."
"Why do you think it was that Kai and Hideaki were not asked to come along or do the task?" Sanosuke asked, his brow furrowing. "It seems odd to me that they weren't considered, especially since Kai lived with them for a while."
Noriaki shrugged. "I don't think Aunt Satomi really likes them all that much."
"So where should we begin?" He wondered. "They have to be close, since they attacked the palace…perhaps near where Kai was found? Or at least near the bigger lakes, since they'll need water."
The elder Uchiha nodded, "Most likely." He said, before steering his horse in the direction of the closest water source.
Sanosuke followed wordlessly, and they rode in silence through the forest. Eventually they came upon a lake, though no sign of orcs could be seen. "Should we go around the entire shore?" Sanosuke asked, his eyes becoming red as he scanned the other side of the water.
"Honestly, I think we should find a good vantage point and set up camp, maybe hide in a tree or something and just wait. They'll most likely stop for the night, right? So if they don't come we'll try another water source tomorrow."
"Lead the way then." he gestured, his eyes shifting back to green.
The two goblins searched around until they found a spot where they could hide their horses and then climbed up into a tall tree that had a clear view over the lake. Hours seemed to pass by, and the sun started drifting below the trees, giving the forest a twilight glow. Noriaki sighed, leaning against the trunk of the tree, since he and Sanosuke were on opposite branches. "What do you think of Kai and Hideaki?"
Sanosuke shrugged. "I suppose they're all right." he said. "I don't interact with them much, though they seem to be weak in certain areas."
"Kai is not assertive enough with Izayoi. He lets her dictate everything that they do…he wouldn't even go and see Hideaki when he was imprisoned because she was too afraid of him. Yet she is the one pledged to him…I understand wanting to make your mate happy, but the man in the relationship needs to be just that. A man." he explained. "And as for Hideaki…well, he nearly lost his soul, and because of that hurt Ami. I don't know the details of what happened, mind you, but I don't understand how a man can be so weak as to let some creature take over their mind, especially if they have a mate depending on them. Ami acts tough, but she's really one of the most emotionally frail women I have ever met."
Noriaki scoffed. "Like you can talk Sanosuke. I thought you meant physical weakness. Besides, you had your issues with Talia because grandfather didn't like her."
"I had issues with Talia because I hate humans." Sanosuke corrected.
"Anyways." He sighed. "I had just had a passing thought…on the whole…process."
"What kind of thought?" Sanosuke asked.
He shrugged, watching the water with red eyes as the sun finally disappeared. "Becoming something like them."
"You mean a goblin-orc." The younger man stated, not needing to ask. "Why would you want to be like them?"
"You remember when Hideaki first arrived and he was losing to the orc venom?" he sighed. "When I tried to stop him…he fended me off like I was nothing. Then Kai stepped in and handled it like he was subduing a child throwing a tantrum."
Sanosuke was quiet for a few moments, before he spoke up. "So this is about them being stronger than you." he said. "You don't feel like you're the best anymore, and after working so hard to become that, it bothers you."
"Of course it does." Noriaki frowned. "Goblins are supposed to be the strongest and the most dependable. Now everything I've worked for seems like…it's been pointless."
"Nobody thinks you're weak Nori." Sanosuke said, looking in his brother's direction.
He sighed. "But I feel weak."
"And in order to get rid of this feeling you're considering becoming a goblin-orc?" the younger prince wondered. "You realize you could very well lose yourself the way Kai and Hideaki did, maybe even worse, since we don't know the effect the venom has on goblins."
"It's worth the risk." He assured. "I've never been the one to back down from something dangerous like this."
"Is it worth risking Hikari's reaction?"
This seemed to make him think, since he remained quiet for some time. "I have to. I've always driven myself to being the best. I wouldn't be me if I didn't try. Besides, she supports me…maybe I just won't tell her though…"
Sanosuke sighed, thinking it over. He knew it was a risky idea, and a stupid one at that. But he was curious about what the end result would be. And it wasn't like other goblins might never be infected. His brother could be like a test subject. Not to mention he didn't like seeing his elder this way. Despite their differences, and the silent competition between them, Sanosuke loved his brother, and he knew if the situation were reversed, Noriaki would help him all the way. "Then we'll need to extract the venom from the orc before we give it to Aunt Satomi." He said. "When we inject it, you'll need to be put into our best cell, because if you turn you'll be stronger than Hideaki was, and he was able to break out of his cell. And you'll need a guard, maybe two. And nobody can know about it until after you've been injected. That way they can't interfere."
"True. It'll just have to be between you and me then." Noriaki agreed.
"Then let's do it." he said. "Do you have something to put the venom in?"
Sanosuke blinked. "You do?"
"I only said possibly." He huffed.
"It was a yes or no question Nori."
Noriaki grumbled. "Yes. I have a syringe."
Sanosuke smirked. "Thought so."
"What?" he chuckled. "I've thought about this already."
"I'd be surprised if you hadn't." the younger man replied.
They both sighed and resumed their watch, but throughout the night there was no sign of any orcs. So when the sun rose, they moved to the next source of water. They had to do this for three days, but finally, from their hiding spot near a river that marked the halfway point between Silex Silicis and the Vale, they saw movement.
Noriaki sat up, his red eyes searching through the trees. "I think they're here." He said.
Sanosuke looked in the direction his brother was, straining his ears for any sound. "The air of the forest has shifted." He said. "I can no longer hear the crickets."
"Neither can I." he whispered, sniffing the air. "Time to assault." He jumped down, followed by Sanosuke, and the two made their way down the river, staying hidden. They crossed quickly where the water was shallow, trailing behind the bulk of orcs that were moving. "We'll lure one away."
"And just how do you suggest we do that?" Sanosuke asked. "Pretend to be some wild animal or something? Odds are more than one will take the bait."
"Then what do you propose we do?"
"I say we wait until they make camp and steal one of the ones on watch." He said. "Or wait until one sneaks off to piss. If they don't stop we can just keep following them and snatch one of the stragglers. There's always one."
Noriaki nodded. "Sounds good."
They continued to watch the group, waiting until the orcs had settled down. When that was finished a few went off, probably in search for something to eat, as others stood watch. Noriaki and Sanosuke picked the smallest of the hunting group to follow, and when its guard seemed to be down, they quickly and efficiently subdued it, knocking it out at the same time. "Well," Sanosuke let out a breath, since that had taken some work. "This one must have been a younger fairy, because it didn't put up as much of a fight as others have in the past."
"Yeah…" Noriaki stretched, rubbing his muscles to sooth them from the tussle. "But we did it." He smirked, grabbing one arm while Sanosuke took the other. "Now let's get out of here before they notice." He said, the two dragging the orc back to where they'd tied their horses. It took some doing, but they managed to craft a makeshift convey and tied it to their horses, as well as strapping the creature in. They headed off, having to be careful since they were now dragging cargo, and couldn't travel as fast.
But after a long trek home, and many stops to make sure the orc stayed unconscious, they were finally in familiar woods, and just out of sight of the main gates. "We should get the venom before we can see the walls."
"Let's do it now then." Sanosuke said, halting his horse along with his brother. They dismounted, Sanosuke walking back to where the unconscious orc was being held as Noriaki got the syringe. "A nice big dose, just to be sure."
"Yeah." He said, pushing it in and looking down at the thing. It was hideous and disfigured, molting and oozing something that was rancid. "These things are so revolting. But their strength is…pretty impressive." He kneeled down and opened the orc's mouth, almost vomiting on the spot from the smell. "Disgusting." He held his breath and examined the thing's fangs and finding the small hole. He placed the syringe needle on the hole and extracted the venom, which was a muggy green.
"A bit ironic that such beautiful creatures as fairies turn into these things." Sanosuke said, watching the process.
Noriaki sat back when the vile was full and glanced up at his brother. "Yeah…but who knows if they're elves or fairies. They can poison anything now."
"True." He nodded. "So are you going to do it now? Or wait until we're in the palace?"
The elder stood, capping off the needle for safety. "Wait. I don't want to risk something going wrong on the way up. So after we deliver the orc, we'll go and do it and then place me in a cell. After it's in, you will go and get Kai and Hideaki and tell them to guard me. But other than that, we tell no one."
"Alright." he agreed, and the two got back on their horses and rode the rest of the way into Silex Silicis. Their catch drew many eyes, and when they reached the palace a group of guards had come out to meet them and carry the orc inside. "Take him to the primary medical room. My aunt will be there shortly." Sanosuke instructed as they entered the palace.
Noriaki and Sanosuke watched as the guards carted the orc off to one of the medical rooms. The two Uchiha went to find their aunt, who was in the library as usual, probably studying more on the fairy dust. When they entered, they saw her and she glanced up, shutting her book immediately. "Did you bring one back?" the pink haired woman asked, walking over to them.
"Yeah." Noriaki smirked. "Tracking them down took longer than I would have liked, but we did it. The guards are taking him to the medical room as we speak."
"Excellent." She said, before heading out. "Good job. I owe you two thanks."
The two goblins watched her hurry down the hall before glancing at each other and stalking off to get some clean supplies for their next task. Once they had a clean needle and a tourniquet, they went down into the dungeons and found a reinforced cell that was away from the rest and any guards that ever checked down here. "Alright…" Noriaki swallowed, switching the needles since he didn't want to get an infection from the orc's contaminated flesh. "We should do this before I change my mind."
"Do you want me to inject you?" Sanosuke asked.
It took him a while to answer, but he took a deep breath and went into the cell. "Yes." He sat down and held his arm out.
Sanosuke took the syringe from his brother, holding it in one hand while using the other to steady his elder's arm. "Alright…here I go." He said, pushing aside his momentary nervousness. He inserted the needle, pushing in about half of the contents. "That should be enough." He said to himself, pulling the needle out and looking at Noriaki's face. "How to you feel?"
Noriaki shrugged, rubbing his arm and wincing slightly. "It hurts and kind of burns."
"Probably your body rejecting the venom." He said, walking outside the cell and closing the door. "Or the venom trying to spread already."
He nodded and leaned back against the wall, grimacing when the pain increased. He met his brother's gaze and something flickered in his mind. "If this works…do you think you'll be doing it?"
Sanosuke grew contemplative. "I don't know." He said, mulling it over. "I suppose…well I think I'll have to decline your offer." He smiled slightly. "Talia's so afraid of orcs…I could never do that to her." he shook his head. "Otherwise your offer's really tempting."
Noriaki chuckled. "And you think Kai bends to Iza too much." he said, wincing once more. He looked to where they'd injected the venom. He could see the dark mass spreading along his veins and quickly infecting him. "Now all that's left is to fight the darkness." He murmured, closing his eyes and resting his head back.
"I'll go and get Kai and Hideaki." He said. "Try not to lose control while you're alone." He told him, turning and leaving the cell. He quickly made his way through the palace, going to the training room where he knew they were testing out Hideaki's abilities. When he entered the room, it was to see Kai and Hideaki going at it with hand to hand combat, their eyes sharper and their claws extended. A few members of the council were lined along the wall, along with some medical people, observing and taking notes. "Pardon me." Sanosuke spoke up, getting the group's attention, as well as the two men in the center of the room. "But I need Kai and Hideaki for an important assignment concerning the orc problem."
One of the council members blinked. "I don't recall any missions coming up regarding that."
"It's quite recent, and will be explained once we have it under control." The Uchiha replied. "But it is imperative they come with me right away."
"Alright." the man nodded, looking to Kai and Hideaki. "We'll finish this when your mission is done."
Kai nodded, patting Hideaki on the back as the two walked off the mat towards Sanosuke. When they got close enough Sanosuke turned, leading them out of the room in a brisk fashion. "What's going on that you need us so urgently?" Kai asked. "We haven't even finished testing Hideaki's abilities."
"As long as he knows his strengths I don't care." Sanosuke replied. "That's all I need from either of you."
"I don't understand." Hideaki sighed. "What do you need us for concerning the orcs? Are we going out of the palace?"
"Not exactly." He said, leading them in the direction of the prison. "It's a bit closer to home, regarding the orc my brother and I brought in today."
The brunette blinked. "You brought an orc here, why? And how come Kai and I weren't told about it?"
"Because it didn't concern you." Sanosuke told them. "We were sent out to capture an orc for my aunt to test the fairy dust on. She believes she found a way to use it to cure them, but isn't sure if it will work." He said as they entered the dungeon and made their way to where Noriaki was being held. "And in the process of bringing it back, we extracted a vial of its venom to…study." He opened the door leading to Noriaki's cell then, and let them go first.
"Study how?" Kai asked, walking in and stopping when he saw the goblin in the cell, as well as the black lines stretching up his arm. "Oh my God."
"Are you insane?!" Hideaki yelled. "You injected yourself?!"
Noriaki nodded, watching the two with bored expression. "Yeah. What's the big deal?"
"The big deal is that we don't know the effect it will have on goblins!" Kai shouted. "Goblins are already aggressive and strong, they don't need the added strengths of an orc!" he took a breath and wiped his hand down his face. "Why would you even do it?"
"Or want to." Hideaki snapped. "It's the most painful process imaginable."
"Because." The prince glared. "It's none of your business."
"He's tired of the two of you being stronger than him." Sanosuke supplied, leaning against the wall and crossing his arms.
Kai rolled his eyes. "Really?"
"Look," Noriaki scoffed, glaring at Sanosuke for a moment. "You two just don't understand how important it is for me to be the strongest, and if you can survive it, I definitely can."
The white haired man arched a brow. "Does your mate even know about this?"
He shook his head. "You're a dead man either way, so I suppose I can stick around and watch it happen." He said, going over to a stool in the corner and taking a seat.
Hideaki sighed, pinching the bridge of his nose. "This is the most idiotic thing anyone could have ever done."
"Well it's not you, so you can do what I asked and just make sure I don't hurt anyone." Noriaki snapped, crossing his arms.
"I'm not staying." Sanosuke said. "I have a mate to be with." He smirked, turning and leaving the cell.
Noriaki watched him before glancing at the other two. "What is it like?"
"Painful. But you already knew that." Kai said. "Your speech may change, but your mind can still process things normally. Another presence may come forth in your mind, and that's the orc blood talking. Try not to give into it, but don't fight the physical change at the same time, because that's what Hideaki tried to do and his orc took over."
"I already told you, I was trying not to scare the kids." He defended, crossing his arms angrily.
"Yeah, but you continued to do it even after you were put in the cell." The white haired man said. "Probably because you didn't want to disgust Ami."
Hideaki scoffed. "Maybe if you'd come and talked to me when I'd asked, we could have avoided all that."
Kai shrugged. "No use in focusing on the past."
"So," Noriaki shifted his gaze between the two. "So what's the difference between you?"
"You mean strength-wise?" Kai asked.
He shrugged. "Everything-wise."
"Well all of our senses are heightened." Kai told him. "We can grow claws now, and our vision changes much like yours does when you're fighting. We're also stronger, as you already knew, though Hideaki is stronger than I am. My magical abilities were also enhanced."
Noriaki arched a curious brow. "Magical abilities?"
"I was a warrior fairy." He replied. "Therefore I was trained in the arts."
"I'm aware." Noriaki appeared annoyed. "I meant what and how were they amplified."
"Then you should have been more specific in your question." He said. "Spells come more easily to me and require less energy to perform. They're also stronger."
Hideaki watched the two, before chuckling. "You know what's odd?"
Noriaki didn't even spare a response, though his attention was now on Hideaki. "Well," the brunette shrugged. "Before, I couldn't stand Kai's presence. But now, I don't know, I feel something other than irritation. I just have this feeling that us three are going to get along…really well."
"I would have to agree with you on that. Especially after working with you for the past few days." Kai said.
"Well I don't." Noriaki rolled his eyes. "I sure as hell don't like this fairy boy who thinks he deserves my sister. And you raped my cousin." He scoffed, gesturing to the brunette.
Kai smirked. "If you make it through the transformation your thoughts might change."
"Doubt it." The prince grumbled.
Hideaki shook his head and went out to get another stool so he could sit. After all, they didn't know long they would be down here with the idiotic goblin.