Tuxedo Samurai Remix
This is a remix from a previous story of mine done under the account of Jonah Mark. It's name was Sailor Moon: Chaos Rising. I want to revisit the idea of a tuxedoed Warrior destined to protect Sailor Mars. The remix will have large plot alterations with some familiar elements. Enjoy the new remix and please check out the original version sometime as well. -Espiritu Invictus
Tuxedo Samurai Remix, a Sailor Moon story
Out of the Rain
It had been raining for days now. The young miko sat on the porch that wrapped around her family's shrine and watched as the rain poured down from the heavens. There was something peaceful about the humdrum of the rain as it struck the tin roofs of the shrine facilities. She closed her eyes, leaning her head back against the post she pressed her back into. The warm cup of tea in her hands comforted her hands from the cool air.
She had spent three of her precious vacation days from school doing absolutely nothing because of this rain, but still, there was something peaceful about it—something cleansing and refreshing. She hadn't felt that way in a long time.
Raye had willed herself not to go there, but she did it again—the dreams. She winced as she tried to banish the images and thoughts from her mind. They started a few months ago—only sporadic at first, but they were becoming an almost nightly occurrence. Oh, these weren't like the typical gloom and doom dreams she was used to having; in fact, there was a small part of her that wished her recent dreams were just that. If they were, then at least she would have her friends by her side. But these? Oh, no, it wasn't that—simple. Raye fought back blinding tears as images danced across her mind—the man in the tuxedo, the mist, the kiss. This dream would only destroy the friendship and love between her and one of her dearest friends. Instead of crying, she fought back the tears and forced the images out of her mind. Whatever this dream was, it was not reality. There was only one man in a tuxedo and she swore to protect him and his princess.
She fluttered her eyes back open and quickly reached up to wipe the remnants of any forming tears. She was alone out on the deck, but it was just an engrained habit she had—that is, making sure that nobody would see her cry. She took another sip of her tea to occupy her mind just as a crow squawked.
She turned her head towards the deck. Two crows—which she affectionately called Phobos and Deimos—hopped around the porch, unwilling to fly out into the rain. "Stranded, are we?" She said to them.
They bounced around some more, paying no attention to her words. She sighed and looked back out into the rain. "Yes, me too." .
It was only minutes, but it seemed like hours, for her to finish her cup of tea. She couldn't help but stare at the leaves that collected at the bottom of the cup. It looked like a soggy crescent moon.
Again, the crows started to squawk, this time much more noisy and frequently. Raye looked at them, wondering what got them in a ruckus. She looked around curiously for a moment, her eyes darting back and forth, until she saw it. At least, she thought she did. She had to study for a few moments through the haze. Something was approaching. She put her hand over her eyes to make it out better.
"What in the world?" Raye stood up from her seat on the deck. A person—a crazy person—approached the shrine walking through the rain. It wasn't until he reached the inner courtyard that Raye could make out that the person was a young man. As he came closer, his features became clearer and clearer.
The young man approached the deck, standing on the stone sidewalk. He paused, standing completely in the rain. His clothes were soaked and they clung tightly to his athletic body. His golden blonde hair laid flat against his head and kept slipping into his eyes. He frequently had to adjust it out of his eyes as he had approached and now as he stood before her.
Raye studied him for a moment—to be respectful, she started at his feet which were caked in mud and slowly worked her way upwards to his face. She couldn't help but notice the sorry state he looked like he was in. What kind of fool would be out on a day like today? Not only was it raining, it was cold, she thought as she watched him exhale a large misty cloud. He was even trembling and shivering slightly. Handsome but crazy, she thought as a small bemused smirk appeared on her face.
"Is Master Himura here?" It was then that his eyes met with hers—beautiful sapphires locked with amethysts.
"Uh…" Raye's voice faltered for a moment, seeing the intensity and desperation in this stranger's eyes. "…yes, yes, of course. Right this way." She motioned for the stranger to come up onto the deck and enter the house.
He approached at a normal speed, seemingly not caring about the rain, but he stopped just before stepping onto the deck and started to take off his shoes.
"Don't worry about it," Raye said, noting the fact the stranger cared about making the deck a muddy mess with his boots.
The stranger continued to remove his boots. As he hunched over to untie the laces, he looked over at Raye. "You're probably the one who has to clean this deck, am I right?"
Raye nodded. He was rather intuitive. "Yes, that's right."
The stranger came up onto the deck and finally found relief from the rain. Raye had opened up the sliding door leading into the house. The stranger went to place his boots back out in the rain, but Raye stretched out her hand for the boots.
"Give them to me. I'll make sure they're taken care of."
"Thank you for your great kindness," He gave a small bow as he turned his boots over to the miko. He stepped inside the house as Raye motioned him to do so. She followed right behind him, noting the large wet backpack he carried. A long wrapped up object stuck out of the backpack. Perhaps it was a small tent or something. Raye started to wonder if this guy was homeless or something. Nevertheless, she took the lead and guided the stranger into the kitchen area.
"Please have a seat. I will find my grandfather." She set the boots down in a safe corner and took off to find Master Himura.
The stranger nodded.
She had a pretty good idea where he would be. She walked to the office and opened the door to see her grandfather hovered over the shrine's financial records with a large magnifying glass. Tasks like that usually took him three times longer than anyone else due to his failing eyesight. "Grandpa, we have a visitor."
The old man didn't look over as he continued to study the numbers. "Today—of all days?"
"Yes," Raye nodded. "He's asking for you."
"Who?" Her grandfather looked up at her.
Raye bit her lip and flushed a little. She hadn't bothered to ask the stranger's name. She was a little too busy admiring his face to ask questions like that. "He didn't give his name."
Grandpa sighed and threw down the magnifying glass. "Well, alright, but I'm going to be really upset if it's some Jehovah's Witness or Tupperware salesman."
"I don't think he's one of those," Raye shook her head as she followed behind her grandfather. The thought of this stranger selling Tupperware seemed as unlikely as Serena Tsukino getting top marks at school.
Raye followed her grandfather into the kitchen. The stranger had not sat down. He stood in the middle of the kitchen dripping and slightly shivering from being chilled to the bone. Raye's grandfather studied the stranger hard with his squinty eyes. "Hmmm, Tsukiyama Akira."
The stranger couldn't help but give a relieved smile at the sound of his name. "Yes, it is good to see you again, Master Himura."
Raye's jaw about dropped as the two seemed to know each other very well. She had certainly never seen this stranger in her life.
"I've seen you've grown more…" Raye's grandpa started.
Akira looked down at his body and nodded.
"…daft, that is." Grandpa finished. "What in the blazes were you doing out in the rain like that? You could have gotten yourself sick or hurt!"
"Uh," Akira stuttered a bit. "Well, I, uh…"
Raye eyed the two of them suspiciously. Raye knew that scolding tone from her grandfather. She thought it was only reserved for people as special as herself, but here she was listening to it, and it wasn't directed at her.
"I need to talk to you, Master." Akira found his voice.
Grandpa let out a sigh, still a little angry about Akira's wanderings in the rain. "Fine. Let's get you warmed up then we can meet…"
"Now," Akira said.
Grandpa noted the desperation in the boy's eyes. "Alright then. Follow me." Grandpa turned and started to walk out of the kitchen. "Raye, please make arrangements for Mr. Tsukiyama."
"Yes, grandpa," She slightly bowed as her grandfather left the room.
Akira started to follow.
"Would you like me to take your backpack?" Raye asked.
Akira shook his head. "No, thank you. I will need it later." The stranger walked out of the kitchen.
Raye cringed as she realized that wet, soaking backpack would probably make a mess all through the house, and she'd be the one who'd have to clean it up. She shrugged though. At least it was only water and not like the muddy boots sitting in the corner. Although, she supposed she'd have to clean those up too.
Raye sat at the table, impatiently tapping her foot against the floor. She managed to prepare a room, find extra clothes, clean the stranger's boots, and slice up some vegetables for dinner. She had been sitting at the table for the past twenty minutes wondering what was going on in that room. What could they possibility be talking about?
Raye didn't like to think of herself as the nosy type—after all, she was friends with some of the most unnaturally meddlesome people on Earth, but curiosity got the best of her. She slowly stood up from her chair and made her way down the hallway. They were meeting in the tea room. She knew every floorboard by heart and watched her steps carefully. It was too perfect. One of the shoji doors was left cracked open. She kneeled down to the floor and peered inside.
Her grandfather sat kneeling at the table, carefully studying a scroll. The stranger sat also on his knees, looking like he had been waiting a long time for an answer. That's probably what has been taking so long—her grandfather can barely see enough to read. Raye almost laughed at the thought, but she managed to keep it to herself.
Grandpa began to roll up the scroll. "Are you aware of the contents of this letter?"
Akira looked up from his daze. "Briefly. Master Ichiro told me to seek you out and to present you with his request. That is all I know."
The old man nodded. "Then I shall honor his request."
Akira nodded as well. "Thank you, Master Himura."
Grandpa stood up and stretched with a yawn. "Let's head to the kitchen. We'll get you some hot tea and get you dry."
Akira stood up as well, taking time to stretch his stiff legs.
"I suppose everything you got in that bag is wet?"
Akira nodded as he and grandpa moved towards the door.
It took Raye a minute to process the fact that the two men were coming out of the tearoom and would spot her spying on the floor. Her eyes bulged, and she sprung up like a ninja. Frightened, she tried to carefully sprint her way back to the kitchen without being seen or heard. It only took a few seconds for her to get back there, but her heart was pounding in her chest.
"Ah, Raye, there you are," Grandpa entered the kitchen seconds later. "Make some tea, will you?"
"Yes…grandpa…" Raye tried to say without sounding like she was out of breath. She immediately went over to the stove to keep her face hidden.
Grandpa waved his hand towards the table. "Sit down, Akira. Take a rest."
The boy still looked wet and miserable as he sat down, but he wasn't shivering anymore. Grandpa sat down at the table as well. He folded his hands neatly together and looked over at the boy. "You remember my granddaughter I told you about?" Grandpa asked as he heard Raye clanking around the kitchen.
Akira nodded. "Yes?"
Grandpa made a pointing motion with his head. "That's her."
"I figured as much," Akira said.
There was a moment of silence before Grandpa spoke again. "You two are about the same age—both of you will be third years in high school."
"Oh, really?" Raye muttered, trying to make small talk.
"She's single, you know…" Grandpa said matter of factly. "…but she's got a nasty temper…"He wrinkled his nose as he said that last part.
"Grandpa!" Raye hissed as she turned around. "You do realize that I have a whole kettle of boiling water that I could dump over your head right now?"
"See what I mean?" Grandpa looked smugly over at Akira.
Akira couldn't help but smile.
Raye let out a sigh of annoyance as she sat down at the table with the men. She poured tea into three cups then set the kettle in the middle of the table. There were a few more moments of silence before Grandpa spoke again.
"Raye, I'll need you to get to work on cleaning the guest house once the rain lets up." Grandpa said, warming his hands against his cup of tea.
"Why is that?" Raye asked before taking a drink.
"Akira, here, is going to be my new apprentice."
Raye instantly spit the hot tea out of her mouth and it flew all over Akira's face. A simultaneous, "What!" popped out of her mouth, but once it was over, she placed her hands over her mouth as her face turned red as scarlet.
Drops of tea rolled down Akira's face as he sat there dumbfounded.
Grandpa braced himself for an argument.
"An apprentice? Are you crazy?" Raye spat. "You're in no condition whatsoever to be taking on an apprentice! The doctors said you need to be resting!"
"Awwh, I'm fine!" Grandpa brushed off the doctors' advice with a motion of his hand. "What do they know anyway? I'm as strong as an ox!" He raised both of his arms and flexed his biceps.
"And as blind as a bat." Raye crossed her arms over her chest.
"Why do you always have to be such a brat?"
"Why do you always have to be a stubborn old man?"
The two started their nonsensical bickering in front of their guest for a few moments until both of them when "Hmph!" At that moment, Raye stormed out of the kitchen and into her bedroom.
Grandpa turned to Akira as if nothing happened and started talking again. "So, we'll also have to get you some new robes. I don't think we've got any around here that will fit you."
Akira nodded silently as the man continued.
There she was crying for the second time that day. Angrily, she fought back the tears, but they just kept coming and coming. She lay on her bed clenching the comforter with her hands. A big wet spot formed underneath her head. She hated crying, but sometimes, it was just too much. There was too much to deal with right now.
Damn those dreams! Even though she wouldn't outright admit it, Serena was one of her best friends, and to have the kinds of dreams she was having—well, it wasn't becoming of a "best friend." There was the man in the tuxedo. She couldn't see his face in the dreams, but who else would it be? Another hot wave of tears poured out of her eyes. There had always been an awkwardness concerning these things—perhaps not to Darien and Serena, but Raye sure felt it. She thought back to that time that seemed like forever ago—to when Serena and Darien didn't get along. Raye had actually dated Darien. She knew that he was just being kind and it was mildly entertaining for him, but for her, it meant much more. She learned not much later though that Darien and Serena were meant to be together. Her feelings were irrelevant. Serena would get her Prince, and she would be alone. Having dreams about things she spent so much time and energy suppressing was torturous!
And of course, Grandpa had to drop another bombshell on her tonight. She'd be cleaning out the old guesthouse—the place where Chad used to live—as if that wasn't going to bring back a lot of unwanted memories. Chad had left a little over a year ago. Just about the time she found herself getting over Darien and ready to open up her heart again, he was gone. Chad Kumada had spent so much time claiming his undying love and affection for her that when she finally was able to receive it and possibly reciprocate, he was already on the road and gone to the next "love of his life."
Strike two for Raye Hino's love life, she thought to herself bitterly. She rolled over onto her back as she managed to get her tears under control, but a long growling sound erupted through her stomach. She groaned. She had hastened to her room after her fight with Grandpa that she forgot to eat dinner. Raye glanced over at the clock; it was already approaching midnight.
He sat on the floor with his back pressed against a western style bed. Only the dim light of a candle lit the room. He was cleaned up and dry now. For pajamas, he was given some temple stay robes consisting of a light grey colored tunic and pants that only went halfway down his calves. He knew he looked silly, but at least his other clothes were hung up and drying in the laundry room.
His hands came up to his face and he rubbed his weary and tired eyes. Goodness, it had been a long couple of days. This was the first time he had a chance to stop moving since it happened—since his master died.
His eyes blinked with tears as recent memories resurfaced in his mind. The slowly weakening grip, the last breath, and the final request of his master all ached in his heart. "Master Ichiro," he uttered, barely above a whisper.
Akira forced back the tears and opened his eyes with full resolve. His master asked him to be here—to come to Tokyo. He didn't know why and he didn't know what the scroll he carried to Tokyo said, but he would honor his master's wish. He would train with Master Himura, one of Master Ichiro's oldest friends.
Akira reached down to his left and he grasped ahold of something he treasured greatly—his katana. The silver blade of the sword glimmered in the candlelight. He gripped the familiar black and gold accented handle and held it up, peering down its long, sharp, and smooth blade. It still was as sharp as he always remembered. The scabbard was black-like midnight, the guard was a glimmering gold, and the handle was wrapped in soft black wrappings. It was a sight to behold—beautiful and deadly. He looked one more time near the base of the blade at the blade's golden collar. There was a small symbol printed into the gold. There was a small round circle with an arrow pointing outwards. He had no idea how it got there—it was always there, as long as he could remember. He shrugged his shoulders at the mystery once again and led his eyes elsewhere.
Akira had made careful preparations for the katana to travel with him. Everything he owned was soaking wet from the rain, but he managed to keep his katana dry and safe. As he examined the blade one more time, he yawned, realizing that it was time for bed. He sheathed the sword and placed it under the bed for safe keeping.
Raye walked back from the kitchen with a snack in her hand. Perhaps a red bean mochi bun wasn't the best choice for dinner, but she rationalized it because of the difficult day she had. She quietly walked down the hallway, careful not to disturb anyone sleeping. As she passed by the tea room, she looked into the open room. Lying on the table was the scroll that Grandpa had been reading in front of Akira earlier that day.
Raye paused at the door. That scroll likely held all the answers to her questions. Who was this Akira guy? What was he doing here? Why did he come now? She bit her lip, feeling her curiosity wanting to burst inside of her. However, she shook her head and closed her eyes with a deep breath. It wouldn't be right of her to do that. She quietly slid the shoji door shut and walked back to her room. She would have to find the answers another way.