Disclaimer: I do not own Tsubasa, neither do i own the starting of this story.



Chapter 17: The Inevitable

"He's sleeping. So it's better.."

Before the man in white could even finish his sentence, Kurogane rushed into the room.

Fuck the doctor. So what if he's sleep? Whatever he says is bullshit. He has to see it for himself to believe. For all he know, they might be lying to him and Fai was not even in the room after all.

Kurogane narrowed his eyes at the room presented before him. It was all white with a single bed at the end. Beside it, a small side table stood with a jug of water filled on top of it.

A large futon on top of the bed covered what seemed like a huge, unmoving lump. Hung on the wall beside the bed, an IV drip connected with whatever object which was hidden beneath the futon. The mob of blonde protruding at the top was telling of who lay beneath those blankets.

"Fai.." Kurogane could not help but let out a sigh of relief. There was only person with blonde hair here in the camp.

He had finally found the mage.

Very slowly, the tall man walked forward. Though pale, the blonde had a rather peaceful look on his face. A sense of protectiveness and affection welled within him. That idiot's ok.. Slowly, the tall man bent downwards and reached out his hand to touch the blonde's head.

But those red eyes stop short at the bandage upon the neck.

Bandage? Why would he have bandage on his neck?

"He has been abusing Fai for all I know. Now that you're free, he started to freak out.. so he brought Fai for treatment."

The words he heard just moments ago echoed in his ears. Could it be true?

He had to find out. In a second, Kurogane grabbed onto the futon that was covering the blonde and swiftly flipped it to reveal the body beneath it.

An scrawny body registered in those red eyes. Pale and ashen, the mage looked like he had not had much to eat for the past few days. The dark eye circles under his eyes were pretty telling of how he hadn't been sleeping much.

"He's suffering from malnutrition and insomnia. His lack of sleep together with insufficient nutrients probably caused the spasm he had two days ago."

The doctor's diagnosis rang in his ears. There's probably some truth in his words.. but those bandages..

Kurogane's eyes narrowed at them. He didn't like the look of it.

Very carefully, he reached down and tugged at the collar slightly. To his surprise, the bandage didn't just end at the neck. Kurogane saw a few residual stretched downwards past the collar, beyond into the white yukata he was wearing.

What in the world..

Surprise flickered across his face. In one swift movement, he pried open the flaps holding the thin layer of cloth together.

His red eyes registered a sight he had not wanted to see.

Across his chest, a few rounds of bandage stretched and moved on to wind around his stomach. It looked like a normal cut wound sustained on his stomach during battle. Under normal circumstances, Kurogane would have simply brushed it away. Even though the blonde was skilled, he could still have made a mistake and ended up hurting himself. But did he really accidentally hurt himself? Or was it inflicted by someone?

No. That wasn't the most pressing issue. His eyes wandered for a bit and caught sight of something that made his heart race.

Small bruises dotted his whole torso from where those bandaged covered. It was that litter of bruises that sent fire to his eyes.

Kurogane did not know what to think. On one hand he did not want to believe that Shozu had said was the truth. Shozu had accused Toya of mistreating Fai.. But he had not told him to look for signs of abuse on the mage. By abusing, did he mean this?

What could cause these bruises?

A gust of fiery anger welled up his insides. Kurogane struggled to keep his calm. There must be some other explanation for this. The Toya he knew from all the other worlds had always been a good guy. There should be no reason that this one isn't.. right?

But the injuries on the blonde still bored into his eyes. There must be another reason..

"Kinomoto.. !," A small whimper that escaped from the pale lips reached his ears.

It was one filled with dread, horror and pain.

Kurogane felt his mouth went dry for that instant and all reasoning eluded him.

Fai started to perspire, his hands grabbed hard onto the bed sheets as though his life depended on it. Droplets of cold sweat dotted his forehead.

There was no doubt.

Blood gushed into his head as he slammed his fist onto the side table, causing the jug to topple over the table and crash onto the ground.

"Kurogane-san.. You should leave Fai-san to rest. He needs.." A few people burst through the door at the commotion he made.

But Kurogane only had eyes for one person.

"YOU FUCKING BASTARD!" Kurogane could not help but let his anger get hold of him as he lunged forward.

The male was immediately sent flying to the ground.

But Kurogane did not stop just there. In a swift motion, he grabbed onto Toya's collar and landed another punch into his face.

The bruises upon the body etched onto his mind.. there was no mistake about it.

The fat man was right.

"Kinomoto had been holding Fai in custody for the past two days you were in dungeons."

Those words echoed in his mind as he recalled what happened just moments ago.

What did he mean by holding custody? There's no way it could have been any other person! He was so damn sure it was Shozu behind all these! But did he really read the signs wrongly?

"I know you don't trust me after the incident at the bathroom. I have no idea what you saw, but I really didn't do anything to Fai."

What did he see? His mind went back to that fateful day.. Did he see Shozu attacking the mage? His mind narrowed down to that instant when he recognized the two figure at the far end of the bath. A figure bent over another met his mind. Shozu was simply there. That's right. No. He didn't see him doing anything to the blonde.. Then why..

Did he really jump into conclusion? Kurogane begun to doubt himself.

"If you don't believe me, head down to the infirmary now. I bet Kinomoto's there." The fat man continued, leading the tall male's mind back to the current situation.

How would he know Kinomoto's there? Suspicion spread across Kurogane's face.

"He has been abusing Fai for all I know. Now that you're free, he started to freak out.. so he brought Fai for treatment."

"He'll definitely tell you that everything is fine.. that's he's just taking care of Fai."

"But don't believe him. That's what he told Mizuro-sama too. Go check and see for yourself. "

The dark brows furrowed, plunging downwards as he tried to make sense of everything. Was the fat man lying or was he saying the truth?

"He was the one who requested to send you for the expedition. He wanted to get you out of the camp. So that he could do whatever he want to Fai."

Those red eyes widened in surprise.

"I told you that you would wish to see me every day didn't I. Mizuro had never intended to send me with him. I knew it all along."

"But he insisted for you to go. That's why I was supportive of Kinomoto Toya to go along for the expedition."

Was that why he was so adamant on making Toya go? Even when everyone was against it? To make him leave with me?

"Yes. To get him out of the camp too." Shozu continued, confirming his hypothesis.

Kurogane searched the fat man's face hard for signs of lying in attempt to determine the truth.

"There's really no point to question what I say now. Go to the infirmary. I'll settle the situation here."

Fucking bastard. Shozu was right. He was the one who had been traumatizing Fai all this while.

Red flooded his eyes. He landed another punch on the man.

"Kurogane-sama! What are you doing?" A frantic young voice rang out above all the commotion as hands rushed forward to separate the tall raven from his target of attack. "Stop!"

"He was the one who requested to send you for the expedition." Those words rang in his ears. "He wanted to get you out of the camp."

He had to make sure.

"Who sent you to deliver the message?" The tall man paused, one hand on Toya, the other raised high in the midst of delivering a punch. His eyes darted to Ryu, glaring slightly.

Kurogane watched as the kid took a step backwards, obviously startled at his question. A look of surprise flickered up his face as his eyes darted to one side for a brief second.

"Who instructed you to deliver the message?" The tall man demanded again, this time his tone was a lot harsher than before. Fear now hung onto the boy's face.

"I-It was a plan.. to save.." Ryu stuttered, as though that was going to calm him down. A look of surprise and conflict flashed upon his face. Those black eyes then darted to down to Toya's face before gulping slightly.

Plan to save? Did he tell him that? More like a plan to send him away. The red eyes blazed in anger.

"It was him wasn't it?"

Kurogane spat in spite. That reaction. It looked as though he was waiting for instructions.. Instructions whether to blow his cover or not. There's no mistake.. It's him.

A long pause hung in the air before anyone spoke. It was as though everyone was holding their breath.

"Yes. It was me." Toya admitted silently.


But just as he was going to land another blow upon the tall man, a series of footsteps came trotting in.

"Kinomoto Toya. You are under arrest for assault of fellow soldiers."

Four soldiers rushed in and grabbed Toya by the arm.

"Victims of assault: Ginkiro Kyosuke, Sakato Taiki and Matsuda Hataro."

"Do you admit to your crimes?"

Kurogane's eyes widened at the sudden change in event. A knowing but sad look seemed to spread across Toya's face. Were they here to capture him? But how?

That was when he saw a familiar fat silhouette almost hidden behind the soldier. Shozu gave a small nod of acknowledgement to the tall raven.

Then a look of acceptance replaced Toya's initial sad look. Very solemnly, he nodded. Two soldiers proceeded to escort him away.

All these while Kurogane stared hard at the man which he had flared up over and hit so many times.

In the midst of the commotion, the sinister smile upon that face was left unseen by any.


"Kurogane-sama.." A familiar young voice called out to him waking him up from the nap he was taking. To be honest, he had not even notice that he had fallen asleep. Reaching outwards, Kurogane stretched his back, yawning slightly. His whole body was stiff from a night's sleep slumped beside the bed. His back cracked with each twist he made.

"You should have some food. Here. Eat some."

Instead of looking at what he was being offered, the tall man's eyes simply glanced down at the motionless body before him. Watching the pained expression flashed across the blonde's face, Kurogane could not help but worry for the blonde. Beads of perspiration clung on his forehead.

It has been a day since the incident involving Toya and the idiot is still asleep. He could not understand what that was kept him unconscious until now.

Slowly, Kurogane reached out. With a clean handkerchief, he dapped carefully against the perspiration, wiping them off. Gently pushing away the sodden lumps of hair away from Fai's face, Kurogane then placed his palm on the pale forehead. It was met with a warm, almost hot sensation.

The idiot was still having a fever.

His other hand remained firmly within the blonde's applying constant pressure.

"I'm not hungry." He replied after while without taking his eyes off Fai. A chilling silence came as his reply but he simply ignored it. The kid must be really irritated with him. Kurogane knew it wasn't really the boy's fault, but he really have no mood to entertain the boy. It's his own fault that the kid had believed in Toya's words and indirectly caused all these to happen.

"Please Kurogane-sama.. Eat some and get some rest. I'll look after Fai-sama while you do so."

"It's ok."

A small sigh reached his ears but he could not care less. Right now, watching over the blonde is more important. He could not let anything bad happen to him anymore.

The bed creaked just so gently as tall man sat down by the side of the bed. With one hand, Kurogane grabbed his traveling companion's hand and gave a small squeeze. His other landed on Fai's forehead, gently wiping the perspiration away.

Looking at the blonde now, he could not help but realized how skinny he had become. The IV drip echoed in the otherwise silent room.

"How is he?"

"Mizuro-sama." Ryu's greeting travelled to his ears. Unwillingly, Kurogane tore his eyes away from the blonde and stood up in attention. His hand momentarily left Fai's. The response was almost immediate.

" €¥}^# $ " The panic-stricken voice whimpered once again as the nightmare which Fai having just moments ago came back to haunt him.

"Hey.. It's ok.." Kurogane immediately turned back to bed and reached out to grab the blonde's hand.

As though momentarily released from his nightmare, the pained expression upon the pale face relaxed. In a matter of minutes, the blonde who looked like he was having the worse nightmare of his life was sleeping peacefully.

How could he leave him here all alone in his current state? He would never have a peace on mind while he was out on the expedition. No. Fai needs him here.

"I'm not going for the expedition. I'm staying."

"That's impossible."

Kurogane frowned at his words which came almost immediately. There was no hesitation in his reply.

"There's no way I'm leaving him here all alone in his current state! Did you see the number of bruises and the cut he had on his body?" Kurogane burst into a fit, slamming his against the wall. A loud thud sounded as the wall reverberated with the sudden force.

"Are we going to have this same conversation again?" The war master exhaled with a small sigh. This issue had been brought out during the meeting, highlighting Kurogane's unwillingness to join in the expedition.

The war master had wanted him.. only him to go for the expedition and Fai is to stay behind here in the base camp. He was 100% against it. Even though he cannot stand the idiot at times, they come as a pair.

But ultimately he agreed because of the message Ryu had sent him… which turned out to be such a scam. Kurogane wanted to hit himself in the head for doing as he was told. Yes. They had the conversation before. He knew exactly what the war master was trying to do. He was trying to remind him of the fact that he had agreed to go.

"Either you come with us, or you're out of Yasha's army. " As though Mizuro's patience had run thin, his voice turned sharp as he eyed the tall man coldly.

"And I probably wouldn't choose the later."

"The jungle wouldn't provide the medical care you need for him." Kurogane watched as his gaze travelled over to the lump that was the blonde. He simply looked on with not an ounce of sympathy, or anger or even.. Wait.. was it him or he sensed a tinge of disgust? But it happened for just that split second, Kurogane couldn't be sure he actually saw it.

An emotionless expression plastered over the war master as he returned his gaze back to the tall raven. His expression then softened and he continued gently.

"We really need your help on this mission."

"Think about it."

With that, Mizuro left the room.

"Damn." Kurogane swore loudly. What should he do now? From Mizuro's reaction, it was obvious he would never be allowed to stay behind and not go for the mission.

But if he were to leave for the expedition.. No.. He didn't like how the other men in the camp were eyeing the mage. Given his current state now, he's definitely most vulnerable. And he wouldn't be around to protect him.

But if he insisted on staying, then the two of them would then be thrown out of the army. They would then become the enemy of both sides. Furthermore, they had to stay put for the damn kids and Monoka to come get them. And he had no idea when would that be.

Kurogane casted a lingering look over at Fai. Yes.. And there's his condition. He had no idea what is wrong with that idiot. If they were to leave the camp.. and Fai were to have another spam attack.. Fuck. he definitely would have no idea what to do.

But in the event that he really had to go.. Given the blonde's current state.. He won't know if he'll get better or turn for the worse. If it's not too serious, he'll just leave the camp. But if it's not as mild as he think..

Kurogane didn't want to think about it. The image of the blonde jerking violently on the floor flashed into his mind. No. He'll have to take precautionary measures before hand. He'll have to find someone to look out for him just in case... But who?

Even though he had not specifically went into the detail, the face of a certain someone had already flashed into his mind. There's probably only one person he can entrust Fai to now. Given his authority.. There's no one who can ensure his safety other than him.

"Ryu, can you get Shozu to come here?"

Fai's body tensed at Kurogane's sentence.

"Shozu-sama?" The young voice reeked every of bewilderment."Kurogane-sama, I know it's not my place to say this, but you have to believe Toya-sama. He has a plan. Why are you asking for Shozu-sama instead of.."

"Somebody has to look after him." The tall man reply simply. He had no idea if Toya is really good or bad but that man was definitely not an option.

"And you're going to ask Shozu-sama?" The shock and panic in Ryu's voice was unmistakable. "Kurogane-sama, you can't! There must be someone else! You can't entrust Fai-sama to that evil man!"

His voice grew louder with each word and at the end of the sentence, Ryu was grabbing onto the tall raven and shouting hysterically. Slightly surprised at the boy's sudden and violent outburst, Kurgoane

Then, movement at the corner of his eyes to his left captured his attention.

As though Ryu's agitated reaction stirred something within the blonde, Fai's breathing hastened and the lump which was his torso begun to heave. The beads of perspiration Kurogane had wiped off earlier had formed again, this time in bigger amounts. In a matter of seconds, they started to roll down his face. A layer of sweat now lined the surface of the ashen face.

"Hey.. It's ok.." Kurogane quickly averted his attention back to the blonde Attempting to calm down the mage like he had done so just moments ago, his hand shot up to ruffle the blonde's hair.

However, instead of calming down, Fai started to toss around on the bed. His body quivered and trembled, unable to escape from his nightmare.

He's not calming down! Dread and anxiety filled his guts upon the realization that his initial trick had not work.

"Fai!" Kurogane almost yelled when he notice something red spilling out from those pale lips. The blonde had bit hard down on his lips and blood was oozing out from the small cut punctured by his teeth.

"I-I'll go get the doctor." Ryu's panic voice reached his ears and Kurogane felt his presence leave the room.

The once limped hand that he had been holding the whole night now grasped his with an impossible strength. Kurogane could feel the sweat that was oozing from Fai's palm.

All of a sudden, Fai's hand shot up to his neck and begun scratching the side. It was as though there was something there and he had want to get rid of it. Kurogane watch in horror as the bandage upon his neck begun to peel and blood starting soaking and gradually ooze out from his already closed wound. His scratching was almost frantic.

"Stop it! Idiot!" Kurogane reached down and with much difficulty, he pried the blonde's fingers from his neck. Forcefully, the tall man forced his hand to remain by his side.

As those that particular preventive act to stop Fai from hurting himself had triggered some counter protective measure, the blonde started to jerk rapidly, his state almost reaching that of a spasm. Kurogane tried hard in vain to calm him down but to no avail.

At that moment, Kusanagi rushed into the room. With one look at his patient, he took out a needle and jab it into Fai.

In a matter of seconds, Fai's vigorous thrashing slowed down and the body calmed down. Watching the blonde's breathing even out, Kurogane preceded on to dab the cold sweat off his face.

The medicine worked faster than he had expected. Seeing the situation, the stupid mage probably need some time to get ready..

"We're gonna heading out soon. I've already help you pack some essentials for the trip ahead. You can stay here for a while longer."

Kurogane looked briefly up to see a head floating beyond the flaps of the entrance to the room. It was his sparing opponent from two days ago. Rikkudou.

"Thanks." He muttered softly, giving a slight nod before returning his gaze to the blonde. Slowly, he let the truth of what was going to happen sink in.

He's really leaving.. He had hoped and prayed that the idiot would wake up within the time period before he leave. Then, at least he could put his mind slightly at ease. But judging from the looks of it, the chances are not high.

"Kurogane.. We need to gather now." A voice from behind sounded. He didn't have to look back to know that it belonged to the huge man Rikkudo.

As though Fai had heard Rikkudo's call to leave, a frown started to form upon those pale pallid skins.

"Shhh.. It's ok.." Kurogane cooed, patting the blonde who was still stuck in his nightmare as he gently caressed the mob of yellow. A gentle look spread across his face.

Mizuro was right. Fai needed medical attention. Until he wakes up, leaving the camp is definitely not an option.

That's right. Obeying the orders and going for the expedition is the only option. Kurogane opened his eyes with new conviction. It's only going to be three weeks. It'll pass by in a jiffy.

"Everything's going to be fine." The frown upon the ashen face ceased as the muscles relax.

"Kuro-.." Fai mumbled almost silently. As soon as those words left his mouth, he slipped back into unconsciousness.

"Hang in there."

Very gently, Kurogane wriggled his hand out from his grasp.

"I'll be back soon."

He gave one last stroke upon the blonde's hair and threw a lingering glance before exiting the room.


Sorry this turned out to be later than expected. I had problems piecing the scenes tgt. But it was fun while it lasted Haha anw I wanted to add in some fluffy stuff between Fai and kuro but not sure how it turned out with so much crazy things happening at the same time xD

And Italics means memory! I was half asleep when I uploaded this D: really awed at the nonsense I wrote for A/N Exam sucks hopefully I'll get more time to complete this during the holidays!

Kira-Writer and Guest: Really thanks for the review! :) Feels good to know there're people looking forward to read this! : D Thanks! But next chapter probably won't be out too soon. Haven wrote anything yet haha (as usual)

Jya mata! :) Reviews?