Standard Disclaimer: I do not own Rurouni Kenshin or Rurouni Kenshin characters.  This story was not written for sale or profit but pure enjoyment.  So with that out of the way please read and enjoy.



A/N—Thank you Midori for encouraging me to post this story. This story takes place after the end of the series and it will be part supernatural as well as some action, adventure, drama and anything else that I can write into it.



A Quirk of Fate



Prologue



The Shadows again… run… hide somewhere... Where? She ran down the empty street dressed in samurai's clothes. She stumbled and fell many times. The darkness was trying to envelop her but she kept on going, just out of its reach. Her strength was leaving her but still she pressed on determined to succeed despite the growing shadows. At every turn she expected to see her goal but it was never there. Down endless roads she raced trying to rid herself of the impending doom until finely she collapsed and could go no farther. That's when the darkness spread over her, engulfing her in a sea of despair.

Yuri awoke with a jerk. The cabin was dark but that never bothered her, she was always in the dark. But what bothered her were the dark shadows. As long as they stayed in her dreams there was time. But when released they would become powerful enough to… she shuddered at the thought.

Rising she listened for any movement from her three children hoping that her cries hadn't disturbed their sleep.

"Are you all right, mother?" came a whiff of a voice belonging to her eldest son.

"Yes Shinji, I just need a breath of fresh air. Now go back to sleep, tomorrow will be a long day for us," she whispered. He seemed to know when she was having those dreams. The boy had a way of knowing many things about her.



The sun was slowly sinking into the water highlighting the deck of a small steam ship. A lone figure stood on the deck looking out into empty space, his face tense and drawn. He leaned heavily against the rail holding it as if he had the problems of the world resting on his shoulders.

His family had turned in early. Unable to sleep, he walked the deck of the ship letting the cool breeze cleanse his aura and clear his mind so that he could enjoy the last night they would spend together until their plan was resolved.

Kiseki heard her soft footsteps and waited for her to find him.

As Yuri approached her husband, she knew what was troubling him. They knew everything about each other, having spent over ten years of their lives exploring one another nothing was left hidden.

When she was within reach, she touched his arm. He turned, embracing her as if by holding her tight all their troubles would go away and everything would be all right once again. A cool breeze brushed a few dark strands of hair against her face making her snuggle deeper into his embrace. They stood holding each other, not wanting to break the tranquility of the moment.

"Yuri, are you sure that you will be all right going back to Kyoto?" Kiseki asked gently lifting her chin so that he could read her face, "We'll be there in the morning."

"I'm not afraid of Kyoto anymore and I can do what must be done," she said trying to put enough force in her voice to calm his fears, " I have to do this, for it is what I was born to do, so please don't worry."

"I know, I'm being very selfish by worrying about you," he whispered hesitantly taking comfort in her body pressed firmly against his, "We haven't been apart since our first meeting and my heart would break if anything happened to you, so you must promise me that you will be careful".

"I promise," she said then smiled as she lifted her head and lightly kissed his exposed neck, "I will be all right, after all Shinji will be with me."

"Yes, our son has talent beyond his years" he said the pride showing in his voice.

"Do you think the Kamiya girl received your letter yet?" Yuri asked trying to shift the conversation to keep her husband from worrying unnecessarily about her.

"Yes, I hope that I can convince her to help me. I know she is the one," he said smiling mischievously before whispering in her ear, " but right now we should enjoy the night and with any luck get some sleep before morning."

"I love you," she said laughing as she was being lifted into his strong arms.



At the Kamiya Dojo, an evening breeze gently sent the musical notes of the wind chime floating in the air. The sound signaled peace and tranquility but there was an under current of danger lingering in the air. Just a small touch of feeling; so slight that the average person would be unable to detect it.

Kenshin couldn't shake the growing feeling of danger that had settled over him so he decided to sit outside and enjoy the last rays of the setting sun before going to bed. His thoughts were leaning towards the possibility of leaving. If I stay I will be putting everyone in danger. I must go out and face the danger to protect the one I love. He sighed then stiffened slightly as Kaoru approached and sat down beside him.

"When you leave I will follow you to the end of the world," she stated with such conviction that he was forced to look at her. The determination that he saw dancing in her eyes made him shudder.

"Kaoru…" he said softly almost inaudible.

"My mind is made up Kenshin. When you go, I will follow you," she cut him off, her voice softer but no less determined.

"How did you know?" Kenshin asked, puzzled that she would know he was thinking of leaving.

"I…I just know," she said blushing and continued before she lost her nerve, "and I know that we have to fight together this time. This one is not just your battle, Kenshin."

"Then you know that I have to go to protect you," he said quietly.

"No Kenshin, not this time. I felt it too. We can protect each other after all you know that I am the Assistant Master of the Kamiya Kasshin Style and I was taught to protect the ones that I love," she said with pride daring him to deny her statement.

"Yea and don't forget about me," Yahiko said sitting down across from Kenshin, determined to be included in the conversation, "I am coming to, no matter what. Kenshin you can't leave me behind this time. "

"You can't stop us, Kenshin. Our time together has made me realize that our destiny is linked to each other," she said but to herself she continued 'even if we don't get married.'

Kenshin looked from one to the other before smiling and then he said, "All right but for now, we need rest. We can talk more in the morning."

"Promise that you won't leave without us?" Kaoru asked as he stood to leave.

"I promise. Now lets get some sleep," Kenshin stood and looked at the last rays of the sun before he retired to his room.

"We can't let him go alone this time, can we?" Yahiko softly asked after Kenshin left.

"No, we have to make him see that he needs us," Kaoru replied watching her fingers dancing together.

Yahiko stood up and started for his room, glancing back at Kaoru, he whispered, "Good night, Ugly."

Kaoru smiled at the words and softly said, "Good night, Brat." She stood for a moment starring at the stars.

Walking to her room, she hesitated remembering the letter from Kiseki. Pulling the letter from her obi she read it again.



* Kaoru I need your help. I will be arriving with my family at your dojo very soon. It is very important what must be done. Kiseki *



I wonder what is so important. I have a bad feeling about this, she thought. The letter brought back a ghost from her past that she hadn't seen in over ten years. Walking back to her room she refolded the letter placing it back in her obi.



To be continued…