Author's Note: These will most likely be a collection of one shots focusing on Kohaku (because I absolutely adore him) and everyone's interactions with him. I wish this manga would get more attention! Anyways, you'll have to forgive me. I haven't written anything in over a year and I can tell that I'm out of practice!
The thing that frightened her the most about Kohaku wasn't his endless supply of weapons, his ill temper or the haggard scar marring his face. It was the thing that set everyone on edge in the group and assured bad things were about to happen no matter where they found themselves. It was the rapid change in emotions that the younger man often underwent that threw her off so badly and had her shrinking away from him in horror. It was in some ways almost like watching two very different Kohaku's switching back and forth. The mischievous, smirking Kohaku with a fondness for snatching naps where he could and teasing her endlessly was the one she was affectionate of. Like an older brother he never failed to yank her out of harm's way one minute only to have her laughing about the near miss the next. When she was with him her mind was at ease. No Guignols could sneak up on them and if something happened he was sure to protect her.
After a month or so of traveling with the Orchestra she began to pick out certain signs when the other Kohaku was about to rear his head. A crease would appear between his brow, an apathetic grin spreading across his lips as his hand snaked up to press against the right side of his face. His temper grew more volatile, his attacks much more vicious as he spitefully blasted the sources of his agony away. It didn't matter how many times Eles yelled at him to stop or attempted to remind him that the Guignols were once living humans-were once someone else's loved ones. It didn't faze him one bit. His lips split open over his madly grinning teeth, one eye squinted against the pain searing through his skull. His arms snapped out, a hail of bullets plunging into the creaking, clacking body of the dolls. His voice if he spoke was always a gravely, ragged growl with gasps panted throughout.
"Hurts…" He whimpered, blasting the face off of what was once a young woman. "Why can't you bastards all just DIE!" He snarled, gun barrels flashing violently.
Eles could vividly remember one particular incident that stuck out freshly in her mind. The group had been trapped in the large greenhouse of an estate, doors barred and a lightning storm raging outside. The owners of the mansion were dead, slaughtered by the horde of Guignols that was making its way through the elaborate house. The four of them had huddled in the center of the room, awaiting the time when they would have to fight their way out. It was silent at first before Kohaku had quite suddenly chuckled and surprised, three heads had swiveled over to stare at him. He was hunched over where he sat, boot clad foot propped up against a large trough, gun dangling almost limply from his gloved fingers. As she had watched he'd fisted a handful of his hair and gave it a sudden yank. His mouth had curled into that half crazed grin Eles had come to fear and a bead of sweat had slithered down the side of his face. What had started out as a low chuckle quickly escalated into an insane high-pitched giggle that sent ice through her veins. Very slowly he'd turned his head to look at them, delirious grin still fixed into place, one visible eye unbelievably wide. A flash of lightning had shot through the night sky just then throwing a brilliant yellow light into the room and casting dark shadows across the planes of his face.
"They're here~" He'd giggled before suddenly leaping up.
It was moments like those that truly frightened Eles. Sometimes she was certain the man was about to go insane any minute and turn one of his sleek weapons on them. Whenever she watched him run off on a Guignol killing rampage she couldn't help but feel immense sorrow for him. Occasionally his aloof mask would slip and he'd tell them how painful the throbbing in his head had become before shrugging it off like it was nothing and going back to cleaning his guns. After a particularly nasty incident where they'd all almost died and Eles had been forced to watch as a crazed Kohaku had viciously crushed a child Guignol's head under the heel of his boot, she'd finally caved.
"Why is he so cruel to them?" She cried desperately, scrubbing at the tears that threatened to overflow from her eyes. Lucille sighed forlornly and patted her on the head, drawing her closer to his side as he watched Kohaku and Gwin fend off the rest of the attacking dolls.
"I would like to think it's not his fault Eles." He began slowly, a regretful expression on his beautiful face. "If I had to guess I would say the agony becomes too much for him and he lashes out at the things causing his pain."
"The Guignols cause his scar to ache right?" Eles asked, looking away from Lucille and back to Kohaku.
"Right, and the more there are the worse the pain becomes. He once confided in me that the only thing he can think of when he gets like that is getting rid of the Guignols as quickly as possible and I suppose in a way that's understandable." Eles was silent as she watched the two men fight, quickly dispatching the rest of the dolls that had clawed their way into the room. "You must understand Eles, it's not that Kohaku is heartless or that he's a cruel person…" Lucille trailed off as a wail suddenly rent the air and startled the two of them watched as Kohaku crouched over the floor where he'd killed his last Guignol and clutched at his head in agony, fingers digging into his hair, chest heaving with his breaths. Gwin stepped silently closer and laid a somewhat stiff yet comforting hand on the younger man's shoulder as he worked to calm himself down and pull himself under control again.
"We've all got burdens to bear Eles." Lucille spoke softly, patting her calmingly on the head. "Kohaku is just more expressive with his."
Author's Note: On a side note some may think that I'm overplaying the pain Kohaku feels whenever Guignols are around but I don't think this is the case. On a lot of the pages in the manga his face is drawn in this twisted grimace of agony and delirium and I think it's rather quite painful for him. A lot of people may underestimate it, but as a person who is plagued with chronic severe migraines I can tell you it's certainly no walk in the park. I feel like I can really relate to Kohaku (not just because of his personality! xD) but because I know what it feels like to crawl in the dark somewhere, clutch at my head and wish for anything in the world that I could just remove the damn thing! Anyways REVIEWS would be appreciated! Feel free to lemme know if the character's personalities are close or if there's mistakes or what not.