Gentlemen (and ladies)! Behold! The shortest and most subtle AHS I have ever written! And, with a gender bent character! A gender bent Hidan of all people? Le gasp!
Seriously though, fem!Hidan in this fic is named Hina, the fic is in her point of view and... Oh, this fic is based on the song 'Gift From the Princess Who Brings Sleep' by Miku Hatsune.
So, in other words, if you've been following the AHS... I will be doing the Seven Deadly Sins. WITH a few exceptions and technicalities. But, for the moment being, let's get to the story.
Disclaimer – Does the anime/manga 'Naruto' make any sense at this point? No. Then I don't own it!
'The gift of love is a honeyed illusion,
But the poison of love is a bitter truth.' – Tyranno's girl.
I always knew… That my life would take turns despite my input. But, alas, that was the role of a woman, despite how it made my blood boil.
I can still remember my father's bemoaning at the fact that his wife had never born him a son: I myself being the only result of many trials and error.
And even though some might have seen my pale skin, slim shape, long hair of snow, and eyes of blood as something of a rarity, my father never failed to make it known how much he despised his sickly, frail, daughter.
Though, I never found myself hating the man. I understood all his fears: without a son, his estate would be gobbled up by my future husband – Sons were always wanted more than daughters for that reason in majority.
But ne'ertheless, I always tried my best to impress the man. While the other young noblewomen were out carrying on and teasing the young chaps in town, I shut myself inside: reading as much as I could since my father saw sending a girl to school as a waste of time since I would 'spend most of my time on my back in one way or another'.
I never… hated my father. Oh, I would never say that I loved the miserable bastard, but I never hated him.
So I stayed in my room and read, filling my mind with far-off customs and tales of adventure. As I grew I often found myself immersing myself in the many stories on the old, worn pages: a small escape from my reality.
The only other escape I had was in the world of my own creation that I could only enter upon journeying to the Sandman's Kingdom: sleeping.
Oh, such a wonder sleep is! After two or three books and a walk, I would often find my ruby eyes slowly shutting and, before I knew it – Out like a light! But as relaxing as sleeping was, what made it truly spectacular were the dreams!
I suppose the fantastic spaces I would enter were due in part to all my reading, but such wonders I would see! I could be having tea with the Emperor of China and the Princess of the moon one second, and be sitting in a palace of pearl and sea-foam the next.
And the summer that I became a woman, my sixteenth year of partaking in the fruits of the heated midsummer evenings, I found that my mind would float towards my past memories of a young boy I met one spring morning.
He was an unusual lad: dark, composed far beyond his years, and sat on my family's garden bench with an abacus on his lap. A silly little girl of four I was, with lessons of being hospitable from mother fresh in my mind, I walked over to him and introduced myself.
His emerald eyes looked at me once, only once, before going back to that abacus. However, the action wasn't off-putting to me in the least. Was it strange that I wanted this boy's attention on me more than any sweet, book, hunting-knife, or nap at that moment?
I decided to let fate decide and pulled a small coin out of my coin-purse. I was about to flip it when he looked at me: emerald pinning me down through his messy brown hair.
I had never been so happy in all my days.
The boy's parents were part of that elite class, so my parents had invited them over for dinner in an effort to strengthen their ties. I could only hope that the Hokus would make more visits and bring their wonderful son along with them.
I would come to love that name, despite the bitter aftertaste its sweetness would leave in my mouth.
It was the second month after I had become a woman that my parents came into the library to give me an announcement. It turned out that I was to be married in a few weeks. I was so stupid, but I was curious, so I asked:
"To whom is it that I shall be married?"
My father damn near cuffed my head off in rage, yelling, "Ungrateful girl! I go through hell and back to find a suitor for you and you have the nerve to ask questions?" My mother, of course, stood there in silence: like the perfect wife. After the stars stopped sparkling before my eyes and the taste of blood left my mouth, I hung my head in a silent apology: lest he get mad again.
He soon left, muttering the need for spirits and taking a quick path to the mansion's parlor. When she was sure he was out of earshot, my mother rushed to my side and offered her handkerchief to cover the bruise on my cheek.
"We'll get the help to bring some ice," She nodded before smiling, "We can't have dear Kakuzu having a battered bride, now, can we?"
"Kakuzu?" I gasped, not sure if this was a blessed dream or someone in real life was playing a joke on me, "Kakuzu Hoku? I am… to marry… Kakuzu Hoku?" My mother nodded,
"What is it that you think your father and his father were discussing all those years ago?"
Before I knew it, the entire town was up in a flurry: decorated in rainbows of flowers, music ringing out over the rooftops.
But I was hardly able to appreciate any of it: my mother was making sure I looked my best for the wedding. "I want flowers in her hair." She told the hair-dresser.
I hated flowers in my hair.
"We absolutely must make proper use of all this gorgeous hair!" She insisted.
I always had the whim to cut my hair. But of course, short hair was unbecoming of a woman.
"Oh, the dress is here!" My mother squealed, gesturing for the delivery men to bring in their package. I discretely winced at the sight of what my mother had chosen for me to wear: it was unreasonably pomp and circumstance, frills and ruffles that went on for miles, lace sleeves, and a corset that looked like it wouldn't even allow me to breathe. "Don't you love it?" She asked, so I humored her,
"I knew you would think so!" She laughed before calling for two maids, "Help Hina get dressed girls, I'll be checking on the church!"
I was right about that dress. So damned painful!
Later, with hands full of white roses and a body constricted by white, my father escorted me down the aisle of the biggest cathedral in town. Even with the church organs, I could hear whispers of gossip in the pews.
'I doubt this marriage will last.'
'Her parents must have paid for everything.'
'The groom is such a miserable miser!'
I wanted to turn right around and slap the lot of them. But… I had an image to protect. So on I walked until my father let me go to step onto the altar. The pearl veil I was wearing obscured my vision of my future husband's face, but hopefully it provided a likeable visage for him.
"Dearly beloved," The priest spoke, holding up his prized bible, "We have gathered here today to see the blessed union of the young judge Kakuzu Hoku and the young daughter of Dr. Shiroi, Hina."
Though it was already happening… I couldn't get past the fact that I was actually getting married! My breath stopped as I felt his large, warm hands lift up my veil and drape it over my hair.
He… Was even more handsome than I remembered, even with the scars he had gotten from the war reaching into his cheeks, but… This was a happy occasion, wasn't it?
He wasn't smiling in the least.
"Do you, Kakuzu," The priest began again, "Take this woman to be your wife? To—"
"I don't have the time nor patience to listen to you rabble on," The brunette scoffed, "Yes." With an indignant sort of snort, the priest turned to me and asked,
"Do you, Hina—"
"Wait," Kakuzu gave a mirthless little laugh, asking, "Why are you asking her? Her father already agreed to this; she has no input."
I desperately tried to ignore the horrified gasps from the women in the church… and the understanding murmurs from their husbands.
"Yes, well…" The priest cleared his throat. He silently turned to me, asking me silently. But Kakuzu was right, after all. I had no say in this matter anymore. "Right. Then by the power vested in me by our heavenly father, I now pronounce you husband and wife. You may now kiss the bride."
"Must I waste time with such trivialities?" Kakuzu asked, the priest finally hissing,
"Damn it man, I know that you aren't one to respect the church but you will at least follow the lord's testament on this day! Now kiss your bride!" Rolling his eyes, Kakuzu looked to me with those cold, emerald eyes.
I wonder how I looked to him, dressed in all that pristine white; my snowy hair done up in flowers and pins.
No matter how, he frowned before leaning forward and gently brushing his lips against mine. Such a simple, emotionless action… But my heart felt damn near to bursting from it.
He took me to bed immediately: demanding that I remove my clothes and lay down in bed. There was no love in his actions, even in such an intimate moment.
Words would be useless to relay the pain I felt as he pounded away into me. As he rutted away like I wasn't even there: like a frantic beast.
But I loved him…
This was my new life. I was always at his beck and call, just like any good wife should have been. However, he was never happy.
One morning, I walked into his office to see if there was anything he wanted of me. "You aren't with child yet?" Kakuzu huffed out, smoke curling up around his face. I slowly shook my head, looking up to meet his eyes before I spoke,
"The town's neighboring doctor said that—"
"God damn you, woman, I know full well what the neighboring doctor said!" He snapped, tilting the parlor table over: sending everything crashing to the floor. "You know, I knew that your father, that lying ass, was hiding something from me!"
I clutched my mother's doll tighter, her presence comforting in such a time as this. When my mother gave her to me, she had helped me so when I had lost my first precious bundle of –
"USELESS BITCH!" He roared, backhanding me to the floor. I could taste the copper of blood on my teeth, but I didn't move. Lest he hit me again. "Why did my father sign me away to you? WHY?" He walked over, me averting my cherry-red eyes so as not to infuriate him again. But he only sighed, combing his fingers through his hair, "God damn it…"
I winced as his boot found my unguarded stomach, bitterly thinking that if I were pregnant again, he would have just killed his own child.
His footsteps echoed as he walked to the shelf, getting a cup of the brandy. I knew what he was doing of course: getting ready to go into the darker alleyways of town to visit the pleasure-houses as he usually did.
I suppose that, since I couldn't give him a child, he refused to even spend any time in my presence. But was that my fault?
He soon left, deciding to let the help tend to me. So, while I lay there, in too much pain to sleep, I let my mind drift. Is this what my mother went through when she married father? Most likely, ours is a miserable lot.
But, what was that? It was a laugh: a light, joyous sound, as if from a child's lips. I strained my eyes to find the source: landing on my precious doll.
"Do you know what a gift is?" She asked, her ruby lips unmoving but my ears hearing her as clear as day.
"What are you talking about dear?" I asked my only love in the world, beside the Sandman's embrace. Lucy giggled before speaking again, her crimson eyes staring into space,
"Gift. English origin.
1. present, donation; charity,
2. (sb's) special skill; an innate talent,
3. (British colloquial) something cheap; an easy task."
My Lucy… My dear Lucy… Such a smart girl… With pain radiating through my entire core, I struggled to carry myself over to my precious girl: cradling her into my arms. I had no idea how, but I had managed to form my bruised lips into the words of a lullaby that one of my nannies used to sing to me.
I ended my song as I felt the Sandman beckoning for me, whispering, "It's time for you to sleep..."
I was barren. That was the sad truth of the matter. I would have laughed if it wouldn't have infuriated both my father and Kakuzu as they stood over me. With Lucy in my arms, I allowed my mind to drift and bade my soul to leave this damned body of mine. But I couldn't ignore the heated arguments around me.
'This is all your fault!'
'Don't blame me! The man is never responsible for a child's faults: it's always the mother!'
'Damn my father for arranging this marriage… How am I supposed to be married and not have an heir? Do you have any idea how that reflects on me?'
I wanted to sleep… God, how I wanted to sleep…
After that day, it was almost as if Kakuzu didn't want me to leave the house. Did he think I would shame him somehow with my presence?
Perhaps I would have.
So there I sat in the mansion parlor: the maids bringing me my lunches and teas. I didn't have much of an appetite, but there would have been hell to face if any food was wasted, so I forced it down.
The positive effect of this, on the other hand, was that with a full stomach I found it easier to fall asleep. I even had the butlers to move a chaise-lounge into this room so I would have a place to slumber.
So, with my dear Lucy in my arms, I slowly laid down. It was a mess to sort all of those petticoats; how I wish I could have just worn trousers like a man, but I managed to get all of them in a way that I could rest without them bothering me too much.
I didn't have to wait long before sleep claimed me.
"…THIS LAZY WHORE!"
I could barely open my eyes before I realized that Kakuzu had returned from the law offices. Something must have gone wrong today, I offered in my heart. That was the only reason he could have returned so angry.
Abruptly, he seized me by my hair (I silently damned my mother's decision to keep it long) and raved and ranted his rage like a lunatic: a frantic beast.
"Stop!" I shouted back, desperately trying to free my hair from his grasp. But he didn't surrender: if anything, my struggling infuriated him even more.
"How dare you?" He asked in sheer disbelief before slapping me so hard that I saw stars before my eyes and then shoving me to the ground. "Do you even know your place, woman?" That was accompanied by a swift kick to my back: the force of the blow stealing my breath for a moment.
In the burst of pain, my hands let go of Lucy: my precious dear. Kakuzu's furious eyes landed on her before he growled, "Still playing with dolls…"
"Don't you touch her!" I hissed, reaching for her. But he got to her first.
"WOULD YOU GROW UP?" With all his strength, he threw her to the floor: her porcelain face shattering into a thousand pieces…
Along with my heart.
"No…" I shook my head, my body in shock as I crawled to Lucy. "No…" Turning her over, I choked back a sob as I saw that her face was gone. "NO~!" I cried, burying my face into my palms.
Kakuzu only left me to my tears.
I don't even know how much time passed since that event. I was almost in a dead state as I moved around the mansion. I asked one of the maids who said it had been a month. Huh, it certainly didn't feel like it. I hadn't even slept a single wink…
Apparently, in an attempt to save face, the following week Kakuzu got me a cat. The little thing had snow white fur and cherry eyes.
"'Since you two have so much in common.'" The hastily scribbled note that accompanied the cat had read.
He was soft, I realized as my fingers combed through his smooth fur.
"You don't like that mangy fleabag," Lucy's voice rang out in my head, "More than you love me, do you?"
"Of course not!" I whispered, my breath coming short, "I could never: you know that! You're my one and only precious dear Lucy… My one and only love…" I heard her laugh,
That caused me to bite my lip: just as the taste of blood got to my tongue, I offered, "He is my husband…"
"I know, I know…" Lucy groaned, "But you see how unreasonable he can be! Honestly, he shattered my face; the miser-bastard!"
"But I love him!" I shouted, the cat-mewling uncomfortably as I clutched him none too gently. "I love him… I just don't know why—"
"He's such a miserable ass?" Lucy huffed. I stayed silent, refusing to respond. However, Lucy started again, "Maybe its because there's something wrong with him? Maybe… Oh."
"Oh?" I blinked, looking around the empty room, "What do you mean 'oh'?" A sweet laugh caressed my ears before Lucy began anew,
"It's so obvious! That fool is always staying up: counting money or going over court documents. He's suffering from a lack of sleep!"
It couldn't have been so simple, could it?
But, it made so much sense.
Too much sense even.
"Oh…" I shook my head, "That poor man." No wonder he was so easily infuriated! I myself could never imagine a world where I couldn't visit the Sandman's kingdom at my leisure. Oh Kakuzu…
"Yes, quite." I could practically feel her roll her crimson eyes, "Look, go to sleep tonight—"
"But I do that every night—"
"Would you just fucking listen for one moment?" She snapped. After I had stopped shaking, she sighed, "My apologies. Go to sleep tonight… And you will find the answers that you need to help him…"
Her voice trailed off into the air, leaving me and the cat alone. I slowly stood to my feet, looking around to see if anyone had seen me or overheard our conversation.
The room was empty.
Following Lucy's words, I went to sleep that evening: the bed empty as usual, so I didn't have to worry about Kakuzu wanting to sleep with me.
No sooner had my eyes drifted shut did I wake up in my paradise on earth. With trees of glass that bore sugar-crusted fruits, an ocean of milk: warm and welcoming, and a castle made of pink seashell standing on the horizon, the Sandman's Kingdom was as beautiful as it was every night.
I never felt more at peace than I was while walking along the shores of the splendid beach. I could have stayed there forever…
"Hey!" I turned, seeing Lucy, my precious girl, standing a few feet away. All beautiful red curls and smiles were in my vision before she spun around once, a book appearing in her hands. "This is what you need right here!" The tome was tossed up into the air, floating gently into my hands. "The thing you need is right in there."
"But…" I blinked, looking at the book, "How will I remember what is in here when I—"
My eyes opened up to cold darkness: my bedroom around me. Sitting up, I sighed, "Wake up…" However, something amazing did happen as I sat there. My mind was… telling me a tale of a mixture.
A wondrous tonic that promised rest and relief to those who imbibed it. As the sounds of the front door opening hit my ears: Kakuzu returning from his nightly activities, a smile grew on my face as I finally had the means to make him feel better.
It was nothing more than a simple sleeping medicine. But with it, helping one who I loved find rest I couldn't help but feel as if I was a messenger of the gracious King of Dreams, the Sandman.
"Please sleep with this gift of mine…
Yes, you can sleep well with this gift of mine…" I whispered to myself, smile growing ever wider,
"I am Princess Sandman who brings eternal repose,
Just so that you can be happy forever..."
It would take some time to create the gift that I needed to create for Kakuzu, so I could only watch over him as he went about his daily, non-work business. I watched him, from the cover of the hallway shadows, as he counted the finances of the house.
He would then break for one of the servants to bring him lunch, usually snapping at them for one reason or another.
Then he would read case notes for work the next day.
As I watched him, completely ignored, I couldn't help but remember when we were children. He had looked at me so intensely when I pulled that coin out of my small purse. He surely loved me, right?
Although it was a politically-motivated marriage,
I nevertheless loved you.
Later on in the evening, he would of course, get ready, dressed to the finest, to go and visit his friends in the city's darkened alleys.
I knew that I couldn't bear him a child, but would it be so much to ask that he spend a small amount of time with me?
You're a good-for-nothing player drowned in your lust,
But I actually loved you from long ago.
As I saw him go, I couldn't help but allow myself to look around at the place I was supposed to call home. Just a few more days, I told myself, a few more days and things would be better.
You are merely after the wealth of a doctor's daughter,
And even that's fine by me.
Those were the types of thoughts that would float into my mind as I walked around the city, gathering more ingredients for the medicine. So what if Kakuzu married me for my father's money? There have been marriages arranged fr worse reasons.
He could grow to love me.
He had too...
You've forgotten our promise made when we were little,
And that's fine, too, as long as I get to stay by your side.
"Kakuzu." I asked one evening at the dinner table. It was a rare occasion, the two of us actually having dinner together.
"Unless you're going to tell me that you're pregnant, save your voice." Was his reply. A soft frown creased my features before I began again,
"You've already been told that I'm barren-"
The shuffling of his chair against the floor and heavy footsteps told me that he had taken his leave: more than half of his meal still at the table.
He was still so tense. I needed that medicine now more than ever. Luckily, one of the servants had told me that the last of the packages that I had sent for had arrived.
"I can bear no longer to watch you stressed out everyday," I was humming as I worked late that night, alone, in the kitchen. It was a nice change of pace, I thought, working alone and being left to my own devices without being judged. The contents of the pot, thick and very pungent, bubbled in front of me.
I added a few more herbs and spirits in gracious amounts, I really wanted this to work, stirring with all the strength I could muster.
"So let me give you a really good medicine.
It will give you sweet dreams, and recuperate your worn body."
When I was finally done, the medicine had boiled down to a rich, viscous concoction the same shade and scent of a freshly plucked rose. It just needed one more ingredient.
I steeled myself as a knife was brought to my palm and then I applied a bit of pressure. It hurt, the steel breaking my flesh, but no more than the night when Kakuzu had stolen my maidenhood.
Did I say stolen?
I meant when I had given it to him, of course.
My blood dripped into the jar containing the medicine, the crimson droplets mixing in with the rest of the jar's contents.
It was done. I would finally be able to help my husband, the lord and love of my life. And he would finally, finally love me! A little smirk grew on my lips when I picked up the jar and held it to my chest. My baby.
"It's a present from me."
"So!" I opened my eyes and saw a splendid ballroom with a golden dance floor. All around there were couples dancing, clad in wondrous dress and locked in loving embraces. I looked at my own body and saw a gorgeous white and red gown. "We are in the presence of the Sandman's Handmaiden!"
Looking up, I saw the hosts of this event. Two men: one was tall and broad, like my Kakuzu, but his wild hair was a rich shade of cobalt and he actually knew how to smile. The other... reminded me of my Lucy, strangely enough: his red hair was long and smooth, and his eyes held a mischievous glint. The others in the room began applauding after the announcement had been made.
"You will be seen as a truly wonderful person," Looking to my side, I saw my sweet little Lucy standing next to me, "Once you give Kakuzu that medicine. It's just a matter of time." She ended off that statement with a sweet smile. I couldn't stop my heart melting at the sight of it.
Joy welled up in me, there in that dream, I couldn't help but sing, "Please sleep with this medicine of mine!" The bluenette came over to take my hand: offering a dance. I happily took it. He swept me across the dance-floor, me singing all the while,
"Yes, you can sleep well with this medicine of mine!
I am Princess Sandman who brings eternal repose,
Just so that you can be happy forever..."
Upon marrying one Kakuzu Hoku,
This young woman finally felt the weight of reality.
Just when Lady Hina was lost,
she came across instruction on
how to refine a 'gift' sleeping medicine.
Hina offered the 'gift' to her husband,
claiming it to be a powerful sleeping aid...
"What nonsense are you spouting?" Kakuzu asked the next evening as I held out a cup of tea, the medicine already mixed in.
"It's to help you sleep," I gulped, white hair tied behind my head, "I worked really hard on this and I would appreciate it if you would try it." She nodded to herself, "You should see the bags under your eyes: it's like you haven't slept in months."
A spiteful chuckle reverberated through the parlor, Kakuzu shaking his head, "Just because your father is a doctor makes you think that you can play as one? Get out of my sight."
"Please!" I begged. He needed the medicine.
He HAD to take this medicine!
But... he wouldn't. Without another word, he grabbed his coat and called for a servant to help him get ready for a night out on the town.
I fell to the floor and wept.
No other course of action, I went for an evening walk to clear my head. What was I to do? Kakuzu wouldn't take the medicine, all my hopes had been shattered in one fell swoop!
"Lucy!" I gasped, looking around for the source of the voice. I finally found her angelic face staring at me from a store window. "What can I do? Everything is falling apart faster than I can mend!"
"I told you," Lucy's voice echoed, "Don't fret. Look around you." I did just that, seeing various citizens going about their business. Then... I noticed something.
"You bastard!" A woman screamed at her husband as she waved about the blouse of another girl, "After all I've done, this is how I'm repaid?"
On another end, a young man was shaking his head at how little produce he had been able to sell at the market that day.
Then a troupe of men helped carry a dead body out of the hospital.
"Everyone has some kind of worries," I slowly realized, a light going off in my mind, "Including my father, my mother, and everyone in this town." Yes... it was all so clear to me now!
"For the sake of every insomniac awake at night,
I will make a sleep medicine as my gift to them!"
So... later that night, I stole away from my home: the medicine jar in hand, and made my quick way to the city well. Me and Kakuzu had our own private water source, which was good because I slept well enough without any medicine and I didn't want to deceive him.
I was so scared... Yet so excited for what I was about to do. Thus, once I was close enough, I opened the jar... and sent the rose sluice into the water below: everything mixing together so you would never even realized I had been there.
"As soon as you're plunged into your dreams,
You can forget your cruel reality and unrequited thoughts." I grabbed the now-empty jar, running back home. The rush filled my body and I couldn't help singing,
"In your crib, just like a little baby,
Close your eyes, and let go of everything!"
Kakuzu Hoku had to take a trip to a neighboring city.
So... In a way, fate had spared him for a time.
However, the next morn...
I sat in the parlor of the house, stroking the fur of the kitten Kakuzu had gotten me. I know that I looked like I was doing nothing more than sitting there, I was actually listening.
"..And she wouldn't wake up!"
"Such a fright..."
It seemed as though my medicine was already helping some people get a good night's, and morn's, sleep.
I only wished that Kakuzu were here to get his own dosage. Oh well. I couldn't help the smile on my face as the servants kept with their talking.
Dr. Shiroi, after taking his evening medicine with a glass of water, passed on in his sleep.
240 dead in the local hospital. No explanation.
The city is flung into rampant chaos as bodies begin collapsing in the street.
Those who look as if they are 'sleeping', are actually already dead.
The city is quickly turned into ruin...
Things had become... so peaceful. It truly was wonderful. I had never realized that this city could be so very wonderful. I suppose it was because everyone was getting a peaceful rest thanks to my medicine.
I found myself walking through the house's garden, passing by the sleeping bodies scattered here and there. I was very careful with my footfalls; Wouldn't want them to wake up, would we?
As I walked, I heard Lucy's voice giggling. Only... her voice sounded different somehow. Deeper...
"Gift. English origin.
1. present, donation; charity,
2. (sb's) special skill; an innate talent,
3. (British colloquial) something cheap; an easy task."
His chuckling followed me through the garden-hedges, growing louder as I grabbed a pair of garden-shears from their embedded position in an old tree-stump. Then, the voice cackled,
Poison, bane, deadly poison!"
Ruby eyes cradled by two tails of white. A sigh left my lips. I had always hated how long this hair of mine was. I raised the garden shears from that walk in the park and brought their gaping maw to the tail on the left.
As the long, ivory hair fluttered to the floor, a strong sense of relief. I did it again, my hair now a short, white bob: almost boyish.
I loved it! Oh, but my mother and father would absolutely hate it if I were to run around the city with my hair like this. But...
They were sleeping, everyone was sleeping. No one would mind if I tried a new means of living. Taking the brush from my mother's vanity, her sleeping body in bed: eyes wide open, I brushed my new hair, softly singing,
"Everyone after drinking my precious gift...
Has become so happy, every single, little one..."
I searched the closets of the servants' quarters, finding a simple shirt and pair of trousers. I'd always had a draw towards such clothing; I never knew why.
The servants were all on the floor, sleeping around me, so I took the opportunity to get dressed then and there. The fabric felt soft, cool... so right. My shoes weren't quite right though. Oh! One of the servants had a pair that looked like they would fit.
They were sleeping anyway, they wouldn't miss them.
My, but their skin was so cold as I undid the clasps of the shoes. I would have to get them a blanket before they catch their death of cold.
The city is so peaceful now. I would go so far as to say that it was better that everyone was asleep if I could enjoy this blissful silence.
However, as I sat there on my home's balcony, something occurred to me. While everyone was in their restoring slumber, I was in charge of the city. In fact, I practically owned it!
Everything was mine to do with as pleased! The banks, the libraries, bakeries... it was all mine!
"I, the only one not sleeping, standing here in their stead..." I stood there, my arms held out at my sides and the winds whipping around me, "Have obtained freedom and wealth at last~!"
A few days later found me sitting in the parlor: my legs kicked up onto the couch and a glass of brandy in my hands. I had never been allowed to drink before everyone went to sleep and, right now, it felt like what I really needed.
A sudden shout took my attention from my drink. Setting it down, I quickly walked to the entrance hall of my home and, to my great surprise, I saw Kakuzu standing there by the door.
Or rather... He was bracing his body against the wall as he struggled forward. "You aren't sleeping..." I gently spoke, frowning, "Why is that?"
"You wretched bitch!" He shouted, choking for a moment before he coughed out a splash of red that stuck fast to the floor and his clothes. "What have you done..? What did you do?"
That was... unusual. Hm. The only thing I could think of was that he was allergic to one of the ingredients in the medicine. Poor thing.
He collapsed to the floor then, coughing up blood and mucus, whining like a babe, "An... Antidote... There has to be an antidote! Hina, GIVE IT TO ME!"
I slowly took a step forward. For a moment, I was still scared of this man I had nothing but love for. But then... I realized that I had the controlling hand in this. "You need to sleep." I commanded, my voice still soft, as I knelt down next to his jerking body. "Sleep, please."
"You whore..." He rasped, his breathing becoming labored, "How dare... How dare you do this to me?"
"Kakuzu..." My hands gently moved over his chest and arms, some of his blood catching on my fingers, "I love you. That's why I made this medicine for you. You were always so angry, it had to have been from stress..." A heavy sigh left my lips, "So please... Sleep."
"Get the hell away from me!" He hacked out, blood spattering onto my blouse. He was drifting off, that was a good sign. His emerald eyes, slowly glazing over, looked up at me one last time. "Ever since the day we met in that garden... I knew that I would grow to hate you..."
"I love you too..." A small smile grew upon my lips, my hands moving up to wipe the feverish sweat from his forehead. To help him along his trip to the Sandman's kingdom, I decided singing would be the best route.
"Please sleep with this poison of mine...
Yes, you can sleep well with this poison of mine...
I am Princess Sandman who brings eternal repose..."
I looked down when the spasms below me stopped. He was finally resting and, by God, he looked so peaceful. This was what I had truly wanted all this time: the face of the man I loved at peace!
"A woman seeking after hope..." I whispered, kissing Kakuzu's forehead.
"Well?" Lucy's voice echoed about the house later that evening, the last few golden flecks of the sun disappearing over the hills, "Did you finally get what you wanted?" I had been getting dressed for bed at that moment, a glass of wine on the dresser.
"Yes..." I yawned, suddenly tired, "It worked far better than I imagined."
"Good." She giggled. Her voice suddenly deepened, "Then you can finally stop this charade of being the victim. Right Hina?"
I don't know what happened then, but at that moment it was as if something broke inside of me. My laughter, raucous and mad, echoed out through the entire house,
"In those days when I was used...
As nothing more than a decorative doll..."
I grabbed the wine glass, taking a heavy swig of it: some of the burgundy liquid spilling onto my evening gown. I turned to the mirror, seeing my gleeful expression.
In a sudden fit, I slammed a fist into the reflective surface: some of the glass falling into the sink, the rest of the shards reflecting a broken image back onto myself.
That was how I really felt. All my life.
"I was already broken a long time ago," I whispered, abruptly shouting,
"So all shall be destroyed by my own hands!"
After the scene in the bathroom, I walked into my bedroom. Kakuzu was already sleeping, the silly man hadn't even tried to wait. It was for the best. I sat down in the bed and took the glass in hand...
Along with the last of the medicine.
Who cared, really?
"This medicine is truly powerful!
Its effects will stay in you forever!"
I giggled as I poured the rose-concoction into the wine, swirling the glass to mix the two together. Finally...
I downed the glass's contents, feeling a warmth rush through my senses. As the warmth, like a mother's embrace, crept through me I moved closer to Kakuzu and brought the covers over us both.
"Now it is finally time for me to sleep..."
I kissed his cheek, my body feeling suddenly heavy. My body collapsed against the mattress. I felt... so peaceful... Even as my vision began to fade... My breathing slowing...
"I'll now change from Princess Sandman..." I rasped out, "To Sleeping Beauty..."
Sandman... Please take me into your embrace...
The once prosperous city turned into a ghost town.
Lady Hina became a complete psychopath,
who took pleasure in killing others.
Was it caused by her own circumstances,
or because she had been brainwashed by that voice...?
After Lady Hina committed suicide,
she took the truth together with her into the darkness...
The only sound in the entire city was the howling wind that whipped through the buildings, slamming and opening unsecured doors.
"Well," Lucy giggled as she walked through the deserted city, "This went a lot quicker than I expected, didn't it?"
"I suppose..." The bluenette from Hina's dreams hummed, folding his arms, "By the way... When are you going to change back?" ( 1 )
"Oh?" Lucy looked at her current visage before chuckling, her voice shifting into its normal, deeper tone, "You're right. After all..." In the blink of an eye, the doll had shifted into the form of a certain fallen angel who ruled over the underworld, "I can't enjoy the body of my precious Duke in that form, now can I? Now," Lucifer nodded, "Two more left to go. Come along."
( 1 ) - * cough * If you've read 'AHS – Duke Hoshigaki's Madness', you should know who these two are, * cough *
So... That's that. Subtle horror, subtle insanity, just a plain, subtle fic. I'm actually disappointed in myself, this fic hardly had any gore! Then again, the song its based on is pretty tame compared to the others that mothy-P (writer of the Vocaloid Deadly Sin series) has made.
Well, if you liked it even a little bit, feel free to drop a review. Please?
Oh, and in case you're curious on what Deadly Sins have been done:
AHS – Zetsu Conchita (Gluttony)
AHS – Duke Hoshigaki's Madness (Lust)
AHS – The Konoha Tailor Shop (Envy)
And this fic is Sloth. Oh, and before anyone asks: I will not be doing Pride. So... Yeah.
The next AHS fic will be dealing on the subject of Wrath. See you all soon...