Hitomi Assassin
Part 7

Hitomi looked over to Mist, who was breaking chucks of a cream cake with her fingers and popping them into her mouth. It had been a whole week since Mist's ninja escape, and a whole week since Hitomi had seen her. All those days away from the dojo, getting some good bed rest, had paid off. Mist was looking much healthier and cleaner, her scars barely noticeable. Hitomi smiled at the girl, sipping from her large milkshake.

However, what went down between Mist and her father left Hitomi in the dark. Although she wanted to help, Mist would always decline her offer, no explanation why. But as there were no new scars, she hoped that her father was away for a while, keeping Mist safe.

"This cake is very nice," Mist spoke up, snapping Hitomi from her thoughts. "Thank you."

Hitomi giggled. "Yep! No problem!" She kept her thoughts to herself, as talking about Mist's father was obviously very upsetting for Mist. So she decided to talk about something else. "Have you seen your brother recently?"

Mist looked up, shocked. She shook her head.

"I know you said he's working a lot, but surely you can arrange to stay with him, even if it does mean moving back to Japan."

Mist shook her head again. "I have to stay here."

"Why?"

Mist glanced away from Hitomi. Hitomi sighed, knowing the answer. It was her father that was keeping her here. "I know the reason, you don't have to try and explain," Hitomi said. Mist shot up from her seat, staring wide eyed at Hitomi. "What is it? I'm sorry okay, I know how you don't like to think about it, but it's going to be all right. I won't allow you to get hurt any more, I promise!"

Mist still didn't sit down. "Why am I here? What do you know?"

"That your father is beating you!" Hitomi said in a hushed tone, so nobody else around would hear. "He's forcing you to stay, am I right?"

^v^v^v^

Kasumi sat down, breathing deeply. Then she began chuckling quietly at her own stupidity. "There is no way that Hitomi would know the real reason I'm here," Kasumi thought, eating more of her cake.

"I'm sorry, okay?" Hitomi took one of Kasumi's hands in hers. "Let's just not talk about it." Kasumi nodded, dragging her hand away from the older teen. The two enjoyed their treats in silence until they were both done. They got up and left the café, walking around the small town. "I hope you don't mind, but I have to pick up shopping," Hitomi said. Kasumi shook her head, following Hitomi to a small market.

Kasumi shivered, her ninja senses kicking in. Feeling as if someone was watching her, she spun around, looking around the area. Seeing nothing out of the ordinary, she walked back to Hitomi, who was browsing the available cabbages on sale. Kasumi's shoulder was forcefully pushed back as someone stormed past her. She stumbled a bit, looking back to see if the person would apologise. That's when her heart raced.

Although her back was facing Kasumi, that only made her seem more recognizable. That, and the unmistakable purple hair with the darker purple bow tied to it. Ayane didn't look back as she strolled along the path of the small town, but Kasumi knew that she had to follow. Kasumi knew that she was here for her.

"I'm sorry," she blurted out to Hitomi, who had finally brought a cabbage. Hitomi looked surprised. "I have to go. I'm sorry."

"Oh... okay then." Hitomi then wore a worried face. "Are you going back home?"

Kasumi gave a small nod, backing away. Before Hitomi could say another word, Kasumi ran towards Ayane, who was just exiting the town, going out onto the streets. "What are you doing here?" Kasumi asked, following Ayane down the pavement.

"My job," Ayane replied. She quickened her pace, leaving Kasumi to jog alongside her.

"You can't kill me Ayane. Not now," Kasumi said, desperation evident in her voice.

"Oh, I'm sorry. I didn't know I had to make an appointment," Ayane snapped. She turned a corner, walking into a large alley. "But I'm all booked up, so you're just going to have to squeeze me in."

"It's not like that! I... I..." Kasumi knew she shouldn't tell Ayane about her mission. She'd just get angrier, and wouldn't listen to Kasumi as she'd try to explain.

"You're seeing Hayate, is that it?"

Kasumi froze, watching as Ayane turned a corner of the alley. Maybe Hayate told her about the mission already, but it didn't seem right. He wouldn't do it. So then, did Ayane find out somehow? Kasumi ran after Ayane, but just as she turned the corner, a foot met her face. Kasumi stumbled back against a wall, the kick reopening a cut on her lip that Hayate had made. Ayane was all ready in her fighting stance. Kasumi looked her up and down for any weapons. As Ayane wasn't in her proper ninja gi, no weapons were on show, however, Kasumi didn't know what was under her thick blue jumper.

"I don't want to fight you," Kasumi pleaded.

"That's what you always say!" Ayane spat. "You're too kind, too weak. The clan has no use for traitors like you, which is why I have to put you down!" Ayane ran for her, but Kasumi merely flipped over her. Ayane ran up the wall, flipping off it. Kasumi was struck in the head with another of Ayane's kicks, sending her to the ground. She was about to get up, but Ayane jumped on her, sending her crashing back down to the ground. From there, Ayane pulled Kasumi's arms behind her, keeping a foot upon her head. Kasumi cried out, trying to pull her arms down, to no avail.

Ayane rolled on her back, then launched Kasumi in the air. The older sister felt pain surge throughout her body as she flopped back onto the ground, grazing her shins. Kasumi couldn't believe it. With only a few attacks, Ayane had already brought her to her knees. As if she realized, Ayane laughed.

"While you were off, making friends with that dumb bimbo, I've been trained by Hayate. I see the improvements are showing too." Ayane laughed more as she watched Kasumi struggling up. "Once I'm done with you, I'll get that bimbo as well. The two of you can spend as much time as you like in the afterlife."

Kasumi glared at Ayane. "Her name is Hitomi," she choked out. "And she's not dumb."

"Why are you standing up for her? Do you realize how pathetic you sound right now? Let me tell you something, traitor. Hayate has sent an assassin out to kill your playmate. Now that's she's alone, she won't stand a chance. Too bad you didn't get to say goodbye, huh?"

"So she doesn't know about my mission," Kasumi thought. She positioned herself into her fighting stance, Ayane looking more amused.

"Don't try and fight back, you'll only be wasting your time!"

Ayane moved into Kasumi, throwing a combo of punches at her. Kasumi dodged them all, then came in low with a sweeping kick, throwing Ayane to the ground. She pounced up on her feet in a flash, striking Kasumi as she spun around, sending her in the air with a flip kick. As Kasumi fell, Ayane strung together a few strikes that caught her sister, sending her crashing into a bin with a spinning kick.

Kasumi shook rubbish out of her hair, cringing at the smell. Hearing footsteps behind her, she sprung forward then flipped backwards over Ayane, elbowing her in the back. Ayane hissed, holding her spine. Kasumi sent a high kick at Ayane, followed up by a flip kick of her own. The killer kunoichi fell, then rolled backwards, driving herself upwards, kicking Kasumi in the chin. She stumbled back as Ayane landed.

Ayane grabbed Kasumi's arm, throwing her down to the ground and kicking her in the face. She tried to attack low again, but Kasumi slipped in a sweeping kick, standing as Ayane fell. She slammed her feet down on Ayane's back with two cartwheel kicks, causing Ayane to yelp and roll on the floor. She dragged herself up, growling as she bared her teeth. With ease, she rotated her body horizontal, spinning like a corkscrew, her feet digging themselves into Kasumi's soft gut which sent her sprawling to the ground. She quickly rolled back up though, seeing Ayane running for her. She drove a backwards kick for Ayane, but it was dodged. However, Ayane didn't see Kasumi back flip, bringing her two legs down upon her. As she was getting up, Kasumi was already throwing punches, connecting them all, ending with a swift elbow to the chest. She was pushed back, then caught in the chin with a twirling palm from Kasumi, and then another one in the gut. Kasumi kneed Ayane twice, pushing her into the air. As she fell, Kasumi punched low and again high, making Ayane flip and land on her stomach.

The kind kunoichi stepped back as her opponent struggled up. Ayane spat on the ground, making Kasumi cringe. "Ayane," Kasumi spoke. "We're both hurt. Let's not continue. Go back to the village."

"Who are you to give me orders?" Ayane snapped. From her sleeve a kunai dropped, she catching it by the hilt. Kasumi took another step back. Ayane spun as she threw it, zipping across the air and slashing along Kasumi's cheek. It stopped once it pinned itself into the brick wall. Kasumi let the blood roll down her face, backing away from Ayane some more. "Cowering away already?"

Two kunai dropped from each of Ayane's sleeves and she threw the ones in her right hand. As Kasumi dodged then both Ayane threw one from her left, and it stabbed Kasumi in her bare shoulder. She screamed, pulling it out and discarding it. Ayane was behind her however, slashing her across the back. Kasumi cried out, moving away as fast as possible, Ayane still swinging and stabbing the kunai. Kasumi's back hit a wall, Ayane immediately using that opportunity to drive her knee into Kasumi's gut. She coughed, doubling over, before she was forcefully pushed back against the wall. Ayane used all her strength to bury the kunai in her sister's chest, yet Kasumi used equal force to hold Ayane back. Both girls struggled, Kasumi using her body weight to push Ayane back. Ayane slammed her head into Kasumi's, dazing both girls. Kasumi slumped against the wall, then Ayane kicked her down to the ground. She sat atop her, holding the older ninja's head to the ground, guiding the kunai to Kasumi's throat.

Ayane slashed Kasumi's hand when it tried to hold her back, yet it can back again. She brought the hand to her mouth and bit it. Kasumi hissed, trying to endure the pain but let Ayane go. Kasumi's other hand wrapped around Ayane's wrist, but Ayane just pounded it against the ground, skin peeling off. Kasumi let go once more, quickly using both hands to hit Ayane's stomach, then used the back of her hand to slap Ayane across the face, pushing her off. Kasumi charged up on her feet, tripping away. Ayane growled, throwing the kunai at the defenceless ninja. Kasumi spun her head in time to see the kunai, but not in time to dodge it. To her surprise though, the kunai froze in front of her face, before being pulled away. Kasumi looked up to see someone standing over her. Ayane looked up at the person who had caught her weapon.

In a second, Ayane was on her knees, bowing low. "Master Hayate!" she gasped, not realizing she was out of breath.

Kasumi stood up on shaky legs next to her brother before leaning on him for support. It was as if he didn't even notice. He stared down at Ayane, who was on her feet now too. "Master, I-"

"You don't need to explain yourself," Hayate said, dropping the kunai.

"Then... why did you stop the kunai? If you knew I have a duty to kill Kasumi, you wouldn't have stopped it."

Hayate acknowledged Kasumi for the first time, glancing down at her. "I need her."

Ayane's anger blazed inside of her. She very rarely got angry at Hayate, but now was one of those times. "Why? Just because she's your new sparing partner?"

"I knew you were watching us the other day," Hayate said. "Which is why I knew you'd come to hunt down Kasumi. But you can't kill her. I need her."

"Why?" Ayane grunted.

Hayate hesitated, looking at Kasumi again. "Because, she's the Hitomi assassin."

Ayane blinked. "What?" she gushed. "What? Her? You choose her over me?!"

"Lower your voice." Hayate commanded.

"No!" Ayane shouted, stamping her foot on the ground. "Why'd you choose her? What does she have that I don't?"

"A chance to return home."

The trio were silent. Hayate and Ayane were completely still, Kasumi still shaking. Hayate's words sunk in everyone. Ayane clenched her fists, growling. "Kasumi," Hayate said. "Leave. Now." He pushed Kasumi off him slightly, and she stood her ground, pink petals surrounding her as she disappeared.

Ayane walked towards a stray kunai that had blood on it. She picked it up, examining it. "Hayate, you can't change the code of the shinobi," Ayane said. "Kasumi is a runaway, which means she must be killed. You can't just bring her back."

"I'm not going to change the code," Hayate explained. "We both agree that Hitomi needs to die, but if Kasumi can prove herself to me, prove herself as a true ninja, overcoming emotion to complete a mission, then she would surely gain the trust of the seniors, of our parents. If I asked them then if she would be allowed back into the clan, then there is a chance that they will allow it."

"And if they don't?"

"They'd have to. Father wouldn't say no to his son, especially not to his daughter."

Ayane gripped the kunai. "And then what? Kasumi's back for good?"

"That's what I'm hoping, yes."

"It won't work!" Hayate was taken aback by the sudden outburst. "Why would you want her back? She's a traitor! She doesn't deserve to come back!"

"She killed the man who paralysed me and raped our mother! That makes her a traitor? She avenged me, knowing full well the consequences of her actions, knowing that this would be her fate, knowing that her whole family would be against her. That takes courage, and yet you continue to say she doesn't deserve her place in the village?"

Ayane covered her eyes, holding back tears. "She was always the princesses, even as a runaway, you still care for her more than me."

"Don't you ever say that again." Ayane was surprised at Hayate's stern tone of voice, watching him march over to her. He put his hands on her shoulders, staring into her eyes. "I don't have favourites, if it were you in her shoes I'd be doing the exact same thing. Don't think I love Kasumi any more than you. But right now, she's the one who needs help, and so I'm going to help her. And you're going to help me."

"But why would I want her back?"

"I know that you love Kasumi just as much as me, Ayane. Don't take this shinobi code too seriously. By the end of the month, you'll get your old best friend back. I'm sure she misses you."

Ayane buried her face in Hayate's chest, hiding her tears. "You sound just like Mother," Ayane sobbed. Hayate chuckled, hugging her.

"Come now, let's go home," Hayate said. Ayane nodded in the hug, and Hayate teleported them away from the scene.

^v^v^v^

Kasumi collapsed on the bed in her flat. She breathed heavily, chanting quietly, forming her hands into different shapes. Her small cuts and grazes slowly healed, but the slash across her back needed it's time to heal. Sweat dampened her hair and the pillow as she looked around the room. It was very plain, nothing to lighten the mood at all. Everything seemed to be brown. The walls were a pale brown, the carpet was a very dark brown. The dresser and the beside table were a wooden brown, and the bedsheets matched the walls. The only thing that really stood out was the calender on the wall, a red circle around the last day of the month.

Kasumi smiled, thinking back to Hitomi. "Make the 31st an important date," she had said. "because that's when Ein will be coming back! I can't wait for the two of you to meet, I'm sure you'll love him!"

What Hitomi didn't know was that she'd already met Ein, and knew him very well too. Kasumi closed her eyes and was about to drift off to sleep, when a thought clouded her mind. She quickly sat up, staring at the calender.

"31st an important date! That's when Ein will be coming back!"

The 31st was only five days away, and if that meant Hayate was coming... wouldn't that really mean it was Hitomi's death day? Kasumi held in her breath, her heart rate quickening. If this was true, then that meant that Kasumi only had five days left with Hitomi, until she would have to make her decision... until she would finally see her parents again... until she'd have to fulfil her role as the Hitomi assassin.

Kasumi lay back down, beginning to cry.


And that's Chapter 7 for y'alls! But now I have some extremely serious news to do with this story.

Another user (who I will keep anonymous) has suggested a number of wild yet genius suggestions for the story, which has kinda opened my eyes and broadened my horizon. A question I've asked myself since the very beginning is whether Kasumi will kill Hitomi, but before these new ideas were presented to me, they were quite boring. However, this is the thing...

I have two possible sequels in my head. If Kasumi kills Hitomi, I will write one of them. If Kasumi doesn't kill Hitomi, I will write the other one. Now I could just decide by myself, but I'm not going to. I'm going to do a vote. You are involved now, you are going to decide the future of Hitomi Assassin. I ask you one question, you will give me an answer:

Should Kasumi kill Hitomi?
Yes or no?

Your opinion is great, but if you have other friends or family who like DOA, ask them too. Even if someone has no idea what DOA is, you could easily explain the basis of the story. 'A kind girl is asked to kill another girl in order for her to return to her family? Should she do it?' Tally it up. Yes: 2 No: 3. I'm NOT saying you have to ask everyone or even run a survey. I don't mind if it's only you giving an answer. But two opinions are better than one. Even I'm asking around myself. Leave a review, PM me, I don't mind.

That is all. Have a nice day.