A/N

Alright folks, This is a story that I wrote years ago...6 years to be approximate. WOW I'm OLD. ): Any who, I kind of just doctored it up and revised a bit of it so it's more up to date and not the musings of a 16 year old Rurouni Kenshin addict...which I admittedly still am and will forever be. To my Shugo Chara Fans, don't worry! I will be posting love for that as well. (: Enjoy and drink and be merry! Cheers, loves! Oh and Rurouni Kenshin is NOT mine, Although I would be in heaven if it were. Rurouni Kenshin Is Copyrighted to Nobuhiro Watsuki and 'Days of The Phoenix' is copyrighted to AFI.

Chapter 1

Wandering. Far away from the sins I have committed, nonstop I am haunted by the faces of the dead. The men I have slain. I beg for release from the never ending moans of my demise, but it never ceases. I had to detach myself from this war, from this twisted and corrupt regime. This begins my search for a Miko who can extract this apparition from within me. It has nothing but a blood lust that can never be sated. His name? Hitokiri Battōsai: A legendary assassin who wreaked havoc upon the innocent and the evil alike, but here's the kicker. He died 100 years ago. He somehow has inhabited my psyche and whenever I am in the heat of battle, he overthrows me and slaughters everything in his path, leaving not a soul to see another day. This blood that coats my hands will never cleanse, all I can do is atone for my sins by saving the lives of the innocent from those who needlessly threaten it. But first, I must remove this leech from within me. He is overtaking me, pushing me from my own body. This must end. The one small step I have taken to thwart my possessor's senseless murdering is scrapping my Katana for a Sakabato. With a reverse blade sword, I cannot slay another soul.

Aimlessly, I found myself in a rather large village. Lifting my violet depths to the clear night sky, stars lighting my path, I noted that I indeed needed to procure a place to sleep. My feet were weary and aching, my whole body exhausted from my daily and constant trekking. Rarely did I stop wandering because when least I expect, some deviant that knows my true identity will come for me, attempting to slay "Hitokiri Battōsai" reborn. Exhaling, I ran my calloused fingers through my blood red mane atop my head and proceeded my stride through the village, looking for an inn I might be able to rest at. In mid step I halted all movements as all my senses screamed in awakening, my head aching from the loud roar Battosai bellowed at the taste of battle. My right hand swiftly slid to my Sakabato, gripping it defensively. Slinking through the protective shadows of the forest I found myself in, I inched closer to the area that set alarms off in my brain.

A clearing in the forest caught my eye. Concealing myself behind a large Willow Tree, I peeked, scrutinizing my surroundings but that was my undoing. My curiosity peaked as I laid my eyes on what I had been searching for. My salvation. The Miko I had been searching for.

This Miko seemed to be engrossed in some kind of extermination, for I saw some sort of demon attempting to attack her, ineffectively I might add. My first instinct is to jump in but I could tell that she appeared to have it under control. Even still, I deliberated with myself on helping her. I decided to stand idle for now, let her do her job and observe just how powerful her abilities seemed to be. Her hands held firm to a mere Bokken, an Oni with ogre-esque features let out a horrendous howl as he charged at her. Frantically, my amethyst depths glanced from her to the youkai, who looked overly aggressive, while the Miko seemed so fragile to me.

Even stranger to me, she made no efforts to move. Instead she closed her lids, her lips moving rapidly, apparently chanting something. The ogre yelling some profane language to the Miko, claiming that she had to right to stand in it's way to feed. Ah, the Miko was protecting her village from being ransacked and having it's inhabitants become somebodies dinner. The ogre struck the barrier she quickly erected with such force that you would think it would have shattered. Quite impressive. She merely ignored the Youkai as his large green fist slammed into her barrier relentlessly, chipping away at her Ki, which held the barrier in place. Her lips suddenly twisted into an indignant smirk as her long legs began to slowly saunter towards her target. Allowing her barrier to fall, the youkai quickly closed the distance between them, or so I thought.

In a seconds time, all I hear is her battle cry as she swings the Bokken once, beheading the creature with a clean swipe and an ease that I would not expect from a mere Miko. With a speed that I could only describe as impressive, she shoves an ofuda on the forehead of the detached head, causing the body of the Oni to disintegrate into a pile of ash.

My eyes were glued to this mysterious Miko and how powerful she certainly appeared. She exhaled loudly, running a hand over her brow to remove the sweat, then unexpectedly, she turns her attention in my direction. Her face displayed a cautious demeanor, indicating that she would not let her guard down. Minutes passed as she continued to glare towards where I stood, my mind boggling at how she even knew of my presence. I made not a sound and was merely a spectator to her fight, not like I moved in to hurt her. Her foot tapped impatiently on the soft grass as she seemed to be getting fed up. "HEY! I know that somebody is there! Unless you want to end up like that beast, then it would be in your best interest to come out before I get mad!"

I cursed internally at me being caught. But how? I was hidden perfectly! I was sure there was no way she could have seen me! I was not known for being loud and idiotic, nor as one easily to be caught. No, I was known for my godlike agility and ability to stealthily conceal myself within the shadows. My brows furrowed in bemusement as I complied to her demands. What point is there in hiding if she already knows I'm here? I stepped from beneath the Willow Tree and into her line of vision, holding both my hands up in surrender. I did NOT want to end up like that pile of ash nor did I want to engage in battle with a woman. I gasped inaudibly,taking in her appearance. She was indeed much younger than I perceived, much more beautiful as well.

As she took silent step after step towards me, I found myself staring shamelessly. Her eyes a pure sapphire hue which held an innocence that I had long since lost. Her hair framed her face perfectly, long glossy ebony strands that held a tint of blue within the moonlight, which was pulled into a messy ponytail that currently hung to her mid back. Free from the confines of the tie, I'm sure her tresses would span to nearly her tailbone. Her skin is a perfect shade of peach, her cheeks glowing with a beauty that one of her youth should not posses.

She donned a priestess attire, A white kimono top with red crocheting at the hem of both sleeves, with a matching red Hakama. That, however, could not hide her voluptuous figure. She was not sultry in her stride as one with her curves should be, but rather tomboyish and unsure in her movements. Her fingers, long and petite, were soft in appearance with painted nails, the color of lavender. Even I had to admit, she is stunning.

She seemed to acknowledge my harmless demeanor as she dropped her guard a bit as she reached me, ceasing her stride just in front of me. She uttered not a word at first as her clear Sapphire depths sized me up. I uttered nothing as well, patiently waiting for her to finish her inspection of me. After a minute or so, she graced me with a warm smile, which I must admit, surprised me a great deal. She held her hand out to me, a hopeful look dwelling in those lovely eyes of hers. Her eyes appeared to glimmer with a friendliness that I didn't expect. "Hi, I'm Kamiya Kaoru." She introduced herself, offering her small hand once more to me. I returned her smile, extending my own rough hand to take a hold of hers, which was just as soft as I had initially thought. "Hello Kaoru-dono, My name is Himura Kenshin. It is a pleasure to meet you." I replied in an introduction of sorts, offering her an inviting smile.

So that's who she is, the esteemed Miko Kamiya Kaoru who is not only a coveted Miko to this village, but the Shihandai of the Kamiya Kasheen-Ryu style of fighting, owning her own dojo as well and instructing students in a sword that protects and doesn't kill. That is a very noble fighting style, that it is. Her depths seemed to twinkle in recognition of my name as she brought her petite hand to her mouth, gasping.

"Himura Kenshin? No way!" She exclaimed, staring at me in disbelief. Oro? I didn't realize I was some sort of celebrity. "Am I well known?"I inquired, an amused smile dancing at my lips. She scoffed and chuckled like I was clueless, and I guess I was in this aspect. "DUH, Himura-San! You are one of the most well known and esteemed Samurai's of the Bakamatsu!"She replied, rolling her eyes at me as if I had just crawled from beneath a rock. Perhaps I had."Ah...that is...interesting, that it is."I mused quietly, mainly speaking to myself out loud. At least this beautiful young priestess had no idea of my true identity just yet.

She sniffed the air suddenly then gagged,loudly at that. Peering at me through narrowed eyes, she wrinkled her nose in distaste. Oro? "Whats the matter?" I asked, concern wrinkling my features. "Kami, your smelly Himura-San! Would you like to use my bath house?" She offered, her dainty fingers pinching her nostrils closed. I damned myself by sniffing under my arms. Immediately I noticed my foul stench as well, I nearly gagged myself at the odor."You are far too kind, Kaoru-dono..."I sighed, letting my pools of violet focus on anything but this kind young woman before me. I was taken aback to feel her hand rest upon my shoulder, her pure pastel hues staring directly at me. "No, I INSIST! No need to spend money on an inn when it seems you can barely afford to get a bath." She urged, not letting me weasel out of her kindness, which was oozing from her flawless pores. How could I refuse?

"If you insist, but please call me Kenshin. I would like that very much if you would, that I would." I affirmed, smiling brightly towards Kaoru. She is indeed the most kind creature that I have ever met.

Her giggles resonated through my eardrums as she bowed to me respectively. "Alright Kenshin." She replied with a soft squeeze to my shoulder then removed her hand. Her smile appeared to be timid and adorable...but even that couldn't take my mind from the one thing still plaguing me. "kaoru-dono, how were you able to sense my presence?"I questioned, seriousness overtaking my voice. She merely shrugged, stretching her arms behind her back. "I felt your aura, Kenshin. Don't forget that I AM a priestess, it would be pretty pathetic if I couldn't that " And that was her simple answer, which still left me pondering. The pondering warped into intrigue and I couldn't help the urge to get to know this young lady.

Moreover, I found myself baffled by her kindness. Could she be so naive to invite a complete stranger into her home? Surely this cannot be safe. The urge to inquire about if she always invited strangers into her home on a whim, but I quickly banished that thought. Bringing that point up could convince her not to let me stay when my aching body was already pining for the soothing heat from a real bath. I felt a tad embarrassed at my stench and my disheveled appearance, she probably thought I was some insane hobo before she knew my identity. I felt her sapphire hues burning holes through me and the only thing I could do was laugh nervously. "Oro?" I blurted in a questioning manner. She laughed out loud at my nervousness."Lets go, Kenshin. My brother wouldn't be too happy to have me out so late." She urged, turning away from me to begin her lazy stride once more. Brother? Yade Yade...

The Walk to Kaoru's dojo was quite short, we followed a path which led us directly to our destination. During the stroll, I allowed myself to analyze her Ki, which was indeed quite powerful. Not only powerful, she was very spiritual, emanating a supernatural and mysterious Ki. All I hoped was to just be able to question her abilities on exorcism to see if she truly has the abilities to rid me of this nuisance that I begrudgingly call my alter ego. Also, I prayed to the Gods that her brother would not be an issue, but for me, the worst always occurs.

Her dojo was quite large, holding 5 decent sized bedrooms, a training room to teach Kamiya Kasheen-Ryu to her pupils. A large bath house was located behind her dojo right next to her Shinto Shrine. The dojo was by no means fancy but held more a feeling of welcoming and warmth. Much like home would feel...if I had ever had one. She showed me around her home then settled in the dining room nestled next to the kitchen, I'm assuming to speak to me. She plopped herself on the floor and waved me over. Sheepishly, I took a seat across from her, settling myself into the Indian style seating. "So Kenshin, tell me about yourself."She urged politely, her eyes beholding her interest.

Again, I began to nervously scratch my head. Was she trying to make small talk or pry into my business? I'll figure that out soon. I pondered why we even had to speak of me. "Nothing terribly interesting, I'm afraid." I replied in nonchalance, finishing my statement with a chuckle. Her huge sky blue depths peered at me suspiciously. "Well that certainly is a very odd scar you have on your cheek..."She pointed out bluntly, her blue depths narrowing. I was a bit stumped as of what to say, I surely would not tell her how I acquired this scar. "Well...that it is, Kaoru-dono, but I would hate to bore you with old war stories..." I answered with a quaint smile, hoping she would drop the subject. She seemed placated for the moment, Thank Kami for that.

"Old war stories, Kenshin...You look so young." She seemed amused but a bit bewildered, shifting her position so both her legs rested aside her, her petite hands residing on her thighs. Young? Never had I thought that I looked young but eh' that's a compliment I guess. "Oro? Kaoru-dono I'm 29 years old, that I am." I admitted, joining in on her laughter. She gasped as her pools of sapphire focused on my pure violet depths. "Are you kidding? You look so...so young!" She exclaimed in astonishment, her eyes raking my form. I sweat dropped, analyzing her to maybe ascertain her age. "I guess that's a compliment." I laughed faintly at her child like enthusiasm. "Well I'm only 18 so...yea. My elder brother is 22." She mused, smiling kindly at me. I thoroughly enjoyed speaking with Kaoru, I have only just met her but already I am drawn to her vibrancy and sassy nature. "Thank you for your hospitality, Kaoru-dono." I thanked her as I smiled brightly, not so much smiling at her. But smiling at the fact that I ended the conversation about me and switched it to something she could not help but follow. She said nothing as she abruptly stood, walking out of sight for a few minutes.

Oro? Did I say something wrong? Or is something wrong with her?

Kaoru emerged after about 7 minutes with a tea tray, which consisted of a porcelain tea pot with 2 lavender rounded ceramic tea cups, white flowers painted through the solid lavender hue. "Would you fancy some chamomile tea, Kenshin?" Her soft cornflower blue hues held a gentle inquiry and I found myself adoring the ever changing blue hues that seemed to cycle through every different shade with her emotions. "Why thank you, Kaoru-dono." I accepted her aromatic tea, thanking her as she carefully handed me the scalding hot cup of tea. Steam billowed from the cup, wafting the scent into my nose, while caused me to inhale deeply. She then poured her own cup, then primly sat in front on me once more, her rump resting on her legs. We sipped in a friendly silence for a few moments before she began questioning me once more.

"So Kenshin, what brings you to my village?" She asked, seeming to just want to quell the overwhelming silence, not to be intrusive of my privacy. Pondering her question, I realized that I had to place my words very carefully, I was not yet comfortable in utilizing her services just yet and I most definitely did NOT want her knowing that I hold the spirit of Hitokiri Battousai within me. "I am a rurouni, Kaoru-dono. I was passing through when I observed your extermination of that Youkai. I was intending on paying for a room at an Inn before you decided to indulge me with your kindness. Sessha is very grateful, that I am." I let her know just enough to placate her and I did not lie to her...I just told her half of the truth. I noted the tranquil smile about her lips, knowing she was pleased with my response.

She seemed to get flustered for a moment, her cheeks stained with a soft pastel pink hue as she shifted, sipping her tea in a thoughtful manner. "I-it's n-nothing special,Kenshin. I help people all the time, at least you aren't some crazed murder who will rape and murder me in my sleep." She assured me, ending her words with a subtle chuckle. She didn't know how close to the truth she was. Granted, I would never rape or murder Kaoru in her sleep, but Battousai is not known for being a mentally stable being. At least not from my despised interactions with that fiend...albeit the interactions were all within my mind. I blackly chuckled at my thoughts, finishing my cup of delicious and relaxing Chamomile tea.

"That's nothing you have to concern yourself with, that it is not. Sessha does not kill." That was the truth at least. I don't slay people, Battousai does but the logic was still idiotic to deny that I spill blood. Technically I spill blood of those deserving, those whom set out to harm others for no apparent reason other than to cause mischief or please themselves. Even though I might immobilize them for the time being, I do not kill them. I merely protect those who need a savior. That is my atonement.

Her blind trust of me was both comforting and concerning at the same time. She collected our cups and retreated to the kitchen once more. My senses heightened once again this night as the feeling of another Ki was approaching us at a steady pace. The Ki was extremely powerful, yet restrained. My fingers smoothly slipped to the hilt of my Sakabato, resting at their desired location just in case it was some deviant out to get his ass kicked. I seemed to be coming into contact with a lot of those kind as of late.

The shoji slid open with a quiet creak, then lazily slid closed. "Kaaaaoooorrruuu-Chan, I'm home!" Called a slightly effeminate male voice, his footsteps padding along the the floorboards of the hallway, making his way to where we were located. I narrowed my eyes, this boy was purposefully making his footsteps loud to let it be known he was indeed coming this way. I am One hundred percent certain he knows some one of a moderate strength is here. Kaoru emerged from the kitchen just then, meeting the young man, who I surmised was indeed her brother due to appearance alone.

"Soujiro! Ohayo!" Kaoru greeted him with an abundance of enthusiasm, momentarily giving him a light hug. One could assume they are very close due to the relaxed manner of their banter. The boys eyes were shut in a very child-like manner, as if he were elated or gleeful. "Kaoru...Who is he?" Soujiro inquired in a rather hushed tone, as if couldn't hear him. An even smile was plastered about his lips as his eyes remained closed. His mannerisms seemed quite odd to me, right from the start. "This is Kenshin. He is a rurouni who is in need of a place to rest for the night." She explained to him, quickly glancing over to toss a smile my way.

"Ah, I see. Himura Kenshin?" The dark haired young man mused, his black eyebrow quirking in blatant surprise, yet his seemingly permanent smile and closed eyes showed nothing of his real thoughts or emotions. I sighed heavily at the recognition of me by just my name alone, a menial role I played in the Bakamatsu war. Well, not so menial but I hated the recognition. "Hai, the one and only." I replied,my voice sounding a bit solemn but I quickly feigned amusement. I wouldn't want Kaoru to question me in front of her brother about why I am so pensive.

This young boy before me has one strikingly powerful Ki and while his appearance and demeanor indicated weakness, the Kikuichi Norimone blade strapped to his side was no joke. Suddenly the wheels started turning in my brain, connecting the dots with my foreknown information and his name, who this harmless looking boy could be. But if we all judged on mere appearance alone then I would definitely be thought of as a wimp, if I wasn't already. It his me then, and I tried to hide my shock at the identity of this seemingly docile man. Soujiro 'The Tenken' Seta. He gained his nickname among the samurai due to his fearsome Shikuchi technique and quick footed maneuvers.

"Seems we are in the presence of a celebrity." Soujiro teased with that same unmoving smile, a smile that many man took foolishly as weakness and in turn got them slaughtered. Not taking an enemy seriously was the downfall of most arrogant warriors. "I seem to be in the presence of one as well, Soujiro 'The Tenken' Seta." I quipped with a light smile, even though after that remark, the tension filled the room like a 300 pound elephant. To my surprise, his smile only brightened at the mention of his alias. Kaoru looked between us with a strange look about her, not seeming to comprehend how we could know of each other. Small world, one would say.

What Kaoru may not know is her brother is a ruthless mercenary for Makoto Shishio, A cold hearted and cut throat Daimyo who has anyone in his way put in a shallow grave by his protection force, The Juppongatana. Soujiro is the most deadly of all the Juppongatana, to no surprise of mine. I have seen him in action only once before and his speed rivaled my own, if not over took it. The boy stood taller than me with that same glossy black hair that Kaoru donned, blue tints in the light as well. The cut of his hair frames his face and is shaggy all the same. A pastel green Kimono top with a white collared shirt beneath and dirt brown hakama was his attire.

Although one with no battle sense at all would take in this boys peaceful appearance and think he was harmless, he is anything but. His Ki oozed a deadly aura that only an experienced warrior could pick up on. "Nice to have met the esteemed Himura-San, but I must retire for the evening. I have pressing matters to tend to at dawn and I am afraid I can't be late. Good night to you both." And with that he silently opened the door to the shoji, quickly closing it and disappearing from sight.

Pressing matters? Yea I'm sure I know what that means, another obstacle in front if Shishio will be taken care of. Yade Yade...Just my lucky to cross paths with the kid sister of 'The Tenken'. My attention was wrangled by Kaoru when she beamed a smile to me, forcing me to wonder how she could not know of her brothers profession. I also noted how she did not speak during the exchange of her brother and I. "Thats my older brother." She stated in a proud manner, her now midnight blue depths shining in admiration of her elder sibling. I'm sure if she knew he killed people for a living then I'm sure that admiration would be a fleeting memory for her. Considering her fighting style is for a sword that protects, her brothers method is worlds away from hers. They could not be more polar opposite. Then a thought occurred to me, a thought I voiced. "Seta? Is your last name not Kamiya?" Perhaps they were only half siblings.

"He kept our mothers maiden name and I took our fathers last name." She answered through a loud yawn, which I had to admit, made her look very adorable. "C'mon Kenshin, let me show you to the guest bedroom, you can take a bath in the morning." She urged, offering me her hand to aid me in standing up. I could easily do it on my own but I decided to take her hand anyway. As soon as I got to my feet I let go of her soft hand, something like reluctance washed over me but I barely knew this girl and I surely could not hold her hand. She led me out of the dining room/kitchen through the shoji, and I followed her down the outside corridors of her dojo until we came upon her living area. We passed through another Shoji and down a hallway to stop in front of what I took to be the guest bedroom.

A sleepy smile crossed her features as she spoke. "Here you are, Kenshin. Have a good sleep." She bid me good night and with that I watched her walk the short distance to her own bedroom, quickly sliding open the shoji and entering, closing it behind her. I entered my provided guest room and closed the paper thin door behind me.

The room was very quaint and nicely decorated. The theme seemed more earthy and spiritual than anything else, what with the statues of Buddha and different glass figurines of cats and cute things of that nature. A lavender blanket with flowers embroidered into the fabric lay on the futon and the room smelled distinctly of Jasmine. I smiled softly at the familiarity of the room. It was more than obvious that Kaoru spent a lot of time in here.

I decided to sit and not mess her room up with my presence, my back flat against the wall. I allowed myself to process the happenings of tonight alone. I encounter a remarkable priestess or immeasurable strength in a village on the outskirts of Edo in the old Musashi Provinceand only as my rotten luck would have it, 'The Tenken' is her brother. A mercenary for a man I fought to remove his corrupt ass from his seat of power, but this war will never end and my weary soul can not endure more of this meaningless bloodshed.

This beautiful Miko was the single most kind woman I have ever met and for a reason I could not explain, I felt an overwhelming urge to keep her from harms way at all cost. Kaoru is more than capable to fend for herself, however the need should not be necessary. A feeling of foreboding washed over me at that moment and I knew without a shadow of a doubt that something ominous pressed in my direction. Something was about to happen. Very soon, but what? What Indeed.

A/N Edo used to be the name of Tokyo in the, no surprise, Edo time period.. I just figured that I would clear that up before people starting trying to flame me for making up false places when I am indeed correct. Any who, let em know what you think. I'm really digging this fanfic and I could use some constructive criticsm. Oh but you know how the saying goes, if you have nothing good or helpful to say then fuck yourself. Lol =D LOVE YOU GUUUUIIIZE!