Kagura always woke up from any hours of sleep by waking her mind first, not opening her eyes. It was weird, but who knows, it was probably a Yato thing. But she enjoyed this little talent, so you could say, and liked being able to have a brief moment of conscious peace before opening her eyes to the chaos of reality.
So, when her brain woke up and was alert enough to pick up her senses, Kagura knew something was wrong.
Whatever she was lying on, it was too comfortable. Although she would never trade her beloved sleeping arrangement at Gin-chan's house in the closet for the world, it wasn't exactly a five star hotel quality service, and she could immediately tell the difference. Whatever she was lying on, it was too soft, warm…and there was an unnatural pressure along the length of her right arm. Finally snapping her eyes open, Kagura turned to her right, only to find herself face-to-face with a lightly snoozing sadist.
The shriek escaped Kagura's lips before she could help it; she offhandedly noted she was on a big bed, but quickly forgot the fact as she tried to scramble away from the sandy-haired policeman who was now slowly opening his eyes, roused by the noise.
"Who the hell changed my alarm to a banshee…" came the mumble from the man as he opened his eyes, squinting.
"You! You…YOU!" Kagura spluttered, pointing her finger as she tried, unsuccessfully, to get away from her rival, kicking at the sheets she was stuck under.
"Uh…where am I? And what are you doing here, China" Okita asked in his usual monotone, not seeming the least bit interested or even shocked at the bizarre predicament.
"I don't fucking know! And get off my arm, you're pinning it down!"
"No, I'm not, actually. You're the one pinning my arm down."
"What do you- oh god."
Kagura finally ripped the sheet away, unveiling her worst nightmare. For whatever reason, her right arm and Okita's left were tightly wound together in what looked like a thick cord, starting right below their shoulders and going all the way down to their hands, which were linked and nicely joined in steel handcuffs.
Okita finally broke his apathetic expression as his eyes widened and mouth fell open.
"The fuck…! ?"
"No…no!" Kagura cried, trying to pull at the binding cords to no avail, "Hel- Helpes me!"
"It's 'help me', idiot!" hissed Okita, "And stop pulling on them; you're hurting me!"
"Like I care! And get away; your face is too close!" Kagura retorted back, pulling her head away.
She was only able to get about a foot's length of space away before her head snapped to a stop.
Both pair of eyes traveled down to see metal collars situated around their necks, connected to each other by a separate length of chain.
"Wha…wha…" Kagura whispered in shock, clawing at the collar on her neck with her only free hand, "I didn't even notice this!"
"Kill me now…somebody, please" muttered the self-proclaimed Prince of Sadists, looking down sadly at the very masochistic situation he was in.
"You know, I would love to, but if I so much as smack you, I get taken down with you!" cried Kagura in frustration as she tried to place herself as far away as she could from the man, which wasn't much.
Okita remained unmoving, muttering to himself with a visible aura of gloom hanging around him.
Shit, he's entered that state. I forgot sadists were delicate, thought Kagura as she tried to control her ragged up breathing.
Finally having calmed down enough that her breathing was relatively even, Kagura tried to remember what had happened before she woke up in this strange situation. She struggled for a few moments, when finally a vague, suspicious memory surfaced in her mind. It was dusk, and she had gone outside the Yorozuya to buy some sukonbu, when she saw a patrol car parked nearby. She remembered seeing Okita poke his head out from the driver's seat window, and having the mischievous thought to ambush him from behind. She remembered that he had turned around the last second, had a look of shock on his face, and then her memory stopped there. All she could guess from her fractured memory was that, in her path to attacking Okita, she had been ambushed instead, and Okita had fallen suit of her demise by some unknown, powerful entity? Well, it had to be powerful. How else could it have taken down both Kagura and Okita? How pathetic.
Sighing, Kagura finally took in her surroundings. They seemed to be in a dark room, with one small window near the ceiling, letting in a sliver of moonlight. It had to be nighttime, then. But this place didn't seem like a cell. From what she could see, it was carpeted, and seemed to be like, with the exception of the cell-like, solitary window, a normal bedroom.
Wait a minute. Bedroom? Bedroom. Bed…room. Bed…room….Bed…Bed…Bed…Be-
"BED!" Kagura screamed out, her eyes wild.
The screech immediately roused Okita from his depression, as he glanced up at the girl who was now positively looking terrified, violently tugging away from him to no avail.
"WE'RE ON A BED!" Kagura continued screaming.
"Um…is it no use to ask what's wrong?" he asked flatly, feeling his body jerking this way and that with each aggressive tug that Kagura made.
"YOU RAPIST! CREEP! GIVE ME BACK MY VIRGINITY!" screeched Kagura.
Okita's cocked eyebrow quickly went down as he simply stared at the writhing girl in disbelief. Finally, he sighed and said, "China, do you even know how virginity is taken?"
Kagura stopped momentarily in her panic as she looked at the sadist like he was stupid.
"Gin-chan always says that your virginity's going to be stolen if you're on the same bed with someone, duh!"
"Good lord, you're even stupider than I thought," Okita commented flatly. "Okay then, do you even know what virginity is?"
Kagura opened her mouth confidently, then clamped it shut after a moment's pause. Not answering the question, she simply glared at Okita.
"Like I thought. First off," Okita drawled, "just being on the same bed with someone does not insinuate sexual intercourse."
"Wha…" Kagura started, turning bright red.
"And second," Okita continued without stop, "you'd have to pay me good money to even consider taking your godforsaken virginity."
Kagura couldn't help it. She punched her sandy-haired rival right square in the face without thinking. Sure, she didn't know much about this whole "sex" thing, but whatever Okita had said just now was rude! Well, she didn't completely understand what he had said either, but something in her ticked when he had said…what was it? "Godforsaken virginity"?
"Like I'd want you to even consider it, you bastard!" yelled Kagura.
She regretted her act an instant later, though, when the said bastard flew back from the force of the punch, snapping her head forward through their connected neck collars and pulling her down with him as they tumbled off the bed.
Kagura instinctively clenched her eyes shut as she fell, hearing Okita grunt as he hit the floor below, and making an unattractive noise herself when her body hit whatever was below her. She immediately opened her eyes, only to find herself, for the second time within ten minutes, gazing into the eyes of Okita Sougo. Kagura couldn't believe herself when she felt her cheeks burn. Was she…blushing? No, the mighty Kagura of the Yato clan doesn't just blush like some stupid, innocent pig-tailed girl in those sucky shojo manga she read sometimes at the convenience store.
"Ugh…" moaned Okita.
The sound reverberated in her body, making Kagura's face flush into a deeper shade of scarlet as she fully realized she was on top of Okita, chests pressed against each other, legs tangled together, and faces only centimeters apart.
"You know," Okita started, "most of the time, normal girls just slap boys who offend them. Not sock them hard enough to make two bodies travel five feet."
His breaths tickled Kagura's face, causing her to shiver slightly as she continued staring into his eyes, lost for words.
"But I guess it's only to be expected from the gargantuan monster who puts hungry cows to shame herself."
Kagura barely heard the insult as she found herself unable to tear her eyes away from Okita's face. She admired his long lashes that framed his entrancing eyes, and the delicate eyebrows that matched the light brown shade of his hair. She had to admit, he was genuinely good-looking; no wonder Gin-chan described him as a bishounen. But she found her gaze repeatedly returning to his eyes. Those eyes of his…they were mesmerizing; she'd always thought they were a boring, yucky, muddy brown, but she saw now that they were slightly tinged with red, giving them a mystical, almost magical appearance. She felt like she could look at them forever. They were beautiful…
Did she just describe Okita Sougo, her creepy, evil rival, the King of the Planet of Sadists, as beautiful?
Albeit, it was his eyes, and not him in general, but still. And did he just call her a cow! ?
Using Okita's chest to prop herself up with her left arm, Kagura quickly jumped away from him as best she could with their linked body parts.
"Watch who you're calling a monster, you fucking sadist," Kagura spat with more venom than necessary as she willed her still red cheeks to return to their normal color.
Okita simply kept a deadpan expression on his face as he slowly sat up. "We still don't know where the hell we are or what's going on," he said, scratching the back of his head. "This actually isn't really the best time to be arguing about things that are already established. I'm a sadist, you're a cow, done."
Angered, Kagura was about to open her mouth to argue back when the sound of static stopped her, followed by an unknown voice filling the room.
"You are exactly right, First Commander Okita Sougo! Very soon you will find yourself wishing back to the moment when the things you were arguing about were as petty as that!"
"Huh?" Kagura gasped as she snapped her head left and right, looking for the source of the voice.
"That way," Okita said darkly, motioning in front of them.
Kagura's eyes widened as she saw that, right across from the bed, was a television monitor propped up on the wall. But what really captured her attention was what was reflected in the screen. A man, she assumed by the voice, of an unidentifiable age was staring back at her, his face hidden with a creepy looking Noh mask. Or, what would be creepy, if it wasn't for his obnoxious voice streaming in through the speakers.
"Welcome, Okita-san and Kagura-san. Welcome to my game of trust and betrayal!"
"What the hell are you saying, geezer? And where did you get that stupid mask, the dollar shop?" jeered Kagura blatantly.
"Wha- I am not a geezer! And this mask is a family heirloom passed from generation to generation-"
"Cut the crap. What do you want from us?" Okita interjected sharply.
"I want to see you betray each other, and strip each other of these masks you call friendship!" the masked man announced ominously.
"We aren't friends to begin with, dumbass."
"Maybe you should get your research done right before you go kidnapping people for your creepy pastimes, buddy."
"Sh-shut up! You guys are at my mercy!" the man bellowed, obviously flustered.
He cleared his throat awkwardly, and then began again in a voice that sounded like it was trying too hard to be dignified.
"I," he began dramatically, "am Jigsaw. And you two will be pawns in my game. I will explain the game now-"
"Jigsaw? Is this idiot for real?"
"Be nice, China. He obviously has insecurities about himself. I mean, look at that mask. I saw it at the dollar shop the other day. The real Saw had better taste."
"Oh, so I was right! Hey, yo, maskman! If you want to succeed in life, you'll want to be a little more than just a second-stringer. At this rate, you'll only get one movie, not seven!"
"I DON'T NEED YOUR STUPID ADVICE!" the self-proclaimed "Jigsaw" screeched, who was now obviously pissed off, failing in his attempt to appear cool and menacing. "AND I WILL NOW FUCKING EXPLAIN THE GAME, SO SHUT UP!"
Kagura complied, looking towards the television screen with a bored expression. Okita did not even grace the screen with a look of boredom; he simply looked deadpan.
"A-ahem," Jigsaw coughed, calming down a bit. "Now. Let me begin with your handcuffs and neck collars. Both of these items are explosive devices."
"What!" choked Kagura, immediately listening more intensively. Even Okita raised his furrowed his eyebrows, staring at the screen towards Jigsaw with more attention.
"Meaning they will explode. KABOOM! Ha, ha, ha!" Jigsaw laughed at what he thought was a villainous performance before he realized no one was impressed by his theatrics.
"Uh…um, anyway," he continued after a slight pause, "these explosives are triggered in a certain way. Do you see the little keyholes on the handcuffs and neck collars?"
Okita and Kagura's heads simultaneously looked down and then at each other to inspect the collar and cuffs, to see that, indeed, there was a small keyhole on each.
"And now, it appears neither of you have noticed yet, but there are two keys dangling from your arm that is not bound."
A jingling noise announced the presence of the keys as Kagura looked down at her left arm; sure enough, there was a thin piece of string tied around right above the crook of her elbow which had two small keys dangling off it.
"Damn…how did I not notice this before," muttered Okita as he looked down at his own respective set of keys dangling off his right arm at the same position, right above the elbow.
"Urrrghh!" Kagura grunted as she twisted her left hand this way and that to try to reach the keys by her elbow.
Okita sighed at her, raising an eyebrow, "Obviously it's set up so you can't reach it with the same hand, stupid. It's like trying to lick your elbow."
Kagura glared at Okita. "Fine, then. I'll use my right hand."
With some difficulty, she pulled up her right arm that was bound with Okita's left, and pulled it towards the keys on her left arm, about to pull them off when Jigsaw's voice stopped her.
"Ah, ah! Wait until I'm done with my explanation, please!"
"What?" Kagura asked testily, not bothering to hide her irritation at the man who was appearing more and more like a clown to her rather than a mysterious mastermind.
"You see, these keys are the triggers to making these explosive devices go off."
Kagura gasped and immediately dropped her right arm, making it fall heavily to the floor along with Okita's left it was bound to.
"Ow," Okita said in an annoyed tone, but Kagura ignored him, waiting for Jigsaw to continue.
"Notice that there is only one keyhole on the handcuffs. The keys labeled 'H' will open it, and both of your keys will work on it. The other key is for unlocking your collar. However, only the key which you have on your arm will unlock your own collar. Kagura-san's has a 'K' on it, while Okita-san's has an 'O'."
"Now, here is the catch," Jigsaw continued, his tone dropping a few notches to sound more serious. "If you unlock one collar, the other one will explode after twenty seconds."
The room remained silent, and Jigsaw, satisfied that Okita and Kagura were speechless for once, continued.
"As you can see, there are two ways to get the keys off your arms. One is in the way you were just trying to do, Kagura-san, which is that both of you are willing to move your bounded arms the same way to remove the key on that person's arm. The second is that the other person removes the keys for you with their free arm. Let me remind you that it may look like flimsy string, but the material the keys are attached to is actually very strong, thin wire. You will not be able to bite it off or break it apart by chaffing it on something in the room. The only way is to use the pliers that are supplied in the closet on your right."
"But wait!" Kagura cried. "These handcuffs are explosives too, right? Do you mean that once we unlock one thing, we only have twenty seconds to try to get untangled out of this! ?" She gestured to her and Okita's bound arms, tightly wrapped together in thick cords.
"Yes," Jigsaw answered gleefully. "Now, begin your game of despair! Let's see how far this friendship and trust of yours will go!"
"I fucking told you…" Kagura began, seething, "WE'RE NOT FRIENDS!"
She lunged towards the closet, intent on getting her hands on a plier. However, Okita, holding onto the bed as an anchor, succeeded in stopping her short of the door as Kagura bounced backward, constrained by the collar chain and their arms.
Kagura growled at Okita, then began to move her right arm, determined to rip off the keys- who gives a damn about the plier, she's got power!- and get the hell out of this place. Okita immediately sensed what she was doing and pulled against her with his left arm, beginning a fierce battle of tug-of-war between the two of them, although it was hardly noticeable because of how tightly their arms were tied together.
"And so it begins…" Jigsaw commented amusedly, watching the two of them pulling against each other ferociously.
The sound of his voice gave a pause to the fight as the two said teenagers glanced at the screen at Jigsaw. They then looked at each other.
"China," Okita began quietly, "do you really want to play right into the hands of this bastard?"
Kagura glared at Okita vehemently.
"Well?" Okita asked, his voice low with tension.
Kagura made a deep breath, then looked him right in the eye, trying to ignore the effect his eyes had on her in close proximity and said clearly, "Hell no."
After a brief moment, the two of them relaxed their bound arms, and remained motionless.
"Bravo, bravo," Jigsaw applauded lazily, "but I wonder how long this truce will last? Entertain me, Okita-san, Kagura-san!"
With that, a static noise sounded, and with a small blip the television screen went dark.
The room was eerily quiet now, and Kagura could hear the even breathing of her fellow captive. Suddenly, Kagura had an idea. But before she could say anything, Okita said loudly, "I'll make it easier for you, China."
He began shifting his left hand. Kagura smirked.
"Seems like we thought of the same thing," she said lightly as she began repositioning her right hand as well.
With their unspoken mutual consent, Kagura placed her handcuffed right hand into Okita's similarly bonded left, intertwining her fingers with his. She felt a small spark of emotion she didn't understand deep inside of her when he curled his fingers around hers in response, and she felt color rising to her cheeks again when she caught sight of him looking at her, smiling confidently.
"Now you won't be tempted to take your keys off, China, thank me."
"Thank you? Hell, thank me, you little pampered sadist."
And thus began the longest day of Kagura's life.
To be continued…
Hey thanks for reading!
I would reeaaallly love it if you would take just a second and drop a review and tell me how it was! This will be a multi-chap fic, and I want to make it better as it goes, and for that I need your opinions!
But all in all, hope you liked it!
See you next chapter!