Title: Floodland

Author: Sybil Rowan

Pairing(s)/Characters: Kurogane/Fai

Rating: M

Summary: AU. Fai uses magic against Ashura's permission and it ends up putting Yuui's life at risk along with all of Celes. They seek out help from Tomoyo and Kurogane. Fai's punishment ends up changing Kurogane's life in significant ways when he finally gets back to Suwa.

Warnings: Some sexual situations. Some violence- fighting, not too graphic.

Author's Notes: (sorry about the long note) This is an alternative timeline where Kurogane and Fai meet under different circumstances. Kurogane, Fai, and Yuui are most like their Horitsuba Gakuen selves. In this alternative setting Ashura adopts both Fai and Yuui, so there's a little less Fai angst. Also, Kurogane's parents are alive, so I figured there would be a little less angst on his part. I took tiny pieces of the dialog from the manga, from Outo World. As far as Weiss Kreuz guys goes, I missed working with them, so I used them later in the story. Oh, named after my favorite Sisters of Mercy album.

Disclaimer: Tsubasa: Reservoir Chronicle its names and characters, belong to CLAMP. Weiss Kreuz, its names and characters belong to Koyasu Takehito, Project Weiss, Marine Entertainment and Animate Film.

Beta Reader: WingedPanther73

Date: December 15, 2012, 5:30 am

Word Count: +30,000, will increase.

Part One:

"I'm telling you, I can manage it," Fai said with a cheerful smile. His dour twin marched at his side, even though he wished they were still safely tucked away in their cozy beds. Fai continued to walk across the snow covered Luval Castle's battlements, even when Yuui started to lag behind.

Yuui finally grabbed Fai's elbow and forced him to pause and meet him, eye-to-eye. Both were dressed in identical white, fur coats and carrying identical gold and fluorite staffs. Beneath the outward appearance, Yuui was as different from Fai as he could be.

Their breaths came out as white puffs in the early dawn's air. A snow flurry was due to hit by mid-morning, so Fai would have to hurry before the storm. Yuui was hoping he could dissuade Fai from his plans, and they could sneak back to their bedroom before King Ashura had a servant fetch them.

"King Ashura will be furious. He warned you not to try this just last night. He says we have the power, but not the skills yet to control that spell. Please listen to him. He's already marked you with a Phoenix Binding for disobedience. Even though you didn't say it, I could feel the pain it caused when he had to engrave it on your skin. I also felt Ashura's distress at having to do that to you."

"Yuui, I need to show him how far I've come. I want him to see we're ready for more advanced training. Aren't you tired of the same old lessons? I want something new." Yuui didn't let go of his grip on Fai. He was torn between protecting Fai from his own daredevil stunts and letting him have his way so he could achieve success. It seemed, now that they had hit sixteen, Fai had grown more and more restless.

And this wasn't just about Fai being disobedient to Ashura. Fai loved and respected King Ashura. It had to do with him desperately wanting Ashura to be proud of him. Ever since they were rescued by the dark-haired ruler eleven years ago, Fai had worked so hard. Every spare minute was devoted to studying magic of all types. Not only did Fai throughly enjoy it, but he did it to please Ashura, as well. Yuui had done likewise, however, there was something that had come between them in recent weeks.

Yuui had some accomplishments in healing magic that Fai had failed at. Vice-a-versa, Yuui wasn't nearly as talented at attack magic as Fai was. Fai could cast some of the most wicked hexes in all of Celes, but it was Yuui that could deftly repair the damage done by those hexes.

Ashura had tried to console Fai when he got discouraged and told him it was because Yuui's temperament was better suited for the healing arts. It disturb Fai that his talents leaned towards the more violent side. Fai'd decided to show Ashura he could accomplish doing something powerful to save face, even though Yuui and Ashura kept assuring him that there was no shame in his talents.

"It'll be fine. I memorized ever stroke of the rune set. It's pretty complicated, but it's firmly in my head."

"I know, but reaching across a dimension and bring something to Celes could be dangerous."

"I'm going to just grab something small, something no bigger than a book," Fai promised and lofted his staff.

"Please, Fai. For me," Yuui pleaded. For a moment, Fai's staff wavered.

"I have to show Ashura there's more I can do than hexes."

"And he knows that. There's lots you can do. I can help you study the healing arts if that's what you want."

"Let me prove it to myself, Yuui. I love you very much, but I really have to do this. Please understand," Fai said, fixing Yuui with one of those endearing smiles his twin had yet to say no to. Yuui stepped back, knowing first hand how extremely stubborn Fai was once he latched onto an idea. He'd continue to plead and badger until he got his way.

The pointy, casting tip of the staff glowed pink, Fai's signal color. Yuui's was a light blue. Fai traced glowing runes in the air, each curve and jot was elegant. Yuui could feel the familiar tingle in his stomach when Fai was casting. Usually it was reassuring, but he was nervous. Something this big was sure to wake up King Ashura. He silently begged his twin to hurry, and the circle in the air was finally complete.

Fai closed his eyes and sent the rune circle higher into the air. Yuui felt Fai's concentration falter for half a second and the circle started to collapse. Yuui quickly lofted the fluorite topper of his staff at Fai's rune circle. It was the sealing part of the wand, but it was too late. His light blue runes dissolved as the pink circle flared and disappeared into the night sky.

"Where did it go?" Yuui asked.

"Another dimension," Fai answered. "I think I put too much into it. It could grab something larger than a book."

They both leaned over the edge of the battlements, eyes glued to the sky. Yuui grabbed Fai's hand, sensing his twin's anxiety and a hint of regret. A bright flash of pink happened above their heads. When their eyes adjusted, they both gasped at what stood on the battlement with them. It was four dark, horrific creatures towering over them. They looked like living, black gargoyles, complete with wings, fangs, and red eyes.

One suddenly lashed out at Fai, but Yuui shoved his twin to the side. Claws raked across Yuui's chest, sending him to the flagstone with deep wounds. "Yuui!" Fai shouted and scooped up his twin. Yuui started getting numb and drowsy.

A green light came from behind the monsters, and they cowered away. They took to the air on their leathery wings to escape another attack spell. Yuui looked over to see King Ashura with his staff lofted, pointing where the creatures had been.

He ran over to his adoptive sons and knelt on the ground. Fai lowered his face towards Yuui; he was crying and mumbling apologies over and over. However, Yuui felt apathy slowly creeping in, along with darkness around the edge of his vision.

Ashura reached over, grabbed Fai by the chin, and forced him to look him eye-to-eye. "What have you done, Fai?"

After that, Yuui let himself slip into a deep sleep.

"They broke free?" Tomoyo asked. Souma and Kurogane were kneeling in front of her. Both of them looked battle weary. They had gone to clear out a group of seven demons on the eastern seacoast. When they came back they went right to Tomoyo to report a strange event.

"There was a flash, like pink lightening, that struck them. Then four of the demons were gone. We didn't have time to kill them, but we got rid of the other three."

"I felt the presence of a strange magic about the time you say this happened. I've never felt anything like that."

"Well, so long as they're gone, one way or the other, I'm not complaining," Kurogane said.

"I just don't think it'll be that simple," Tomoyo said before dismissing them.

"Can't you do something?" Fai asked, barely above a whisper. He was kneeling beside Yuui's bed in their shared room. It wasn't that the king didn't offer to give them their own separate bedrooms. It was just their horrible time in Valeria still clung to them like a bad odor, and they relied on each other for comfort when they had nightmares.

Fai reached over and took Yuui's hand. It felt like ice. Yuui's chest was bandaged and he was wrapped in the warmest, sable lined robe from his wardrobe. It was as if he'd fallen into a deep, enchanted sleep.

King Ashura put his hand on Yuui's forehead and shut his eyes. "If I knew where those things came from, then I could treat him." Ashura's brown eyes opened, but then narrowed as he studied Yuui's face. "It feels as though he's being petrifying. His magical abilities will slow down this process, but we have to figure out an antidote. And we have to stop those things before they harm anyone else."

"I'm so sorry. I didn't mean for this to happen," Fai murmured. His remorse was heavy enough to crush him. He had been close to losing Yuui when they were little. Yuui, being the younger twin, should have been the one executed according to Valerian tradition. Now coming this close again was eating Fai up inside. Especially, since this was his fault. He'd never forgive himself if he couldn't get Yuui healed.

"Fai, put all that away for latter. We need to put our efforts into saving Yuui's life."

"What should I do?" Fai asked.

"I'm going to go send out messengers to the villages. I'll warn them to defend, but not kill these creatures in case we need a live one for an antidote. I'll find the realm these creatures came from and we'll go from there."

"How will you do that?"

King Ashura laid his hand on Fai's head and gave him a compassionate smile. It had a calming effect on Fai. "I'm going to sleep. I'll see if I can't find a fellow dream seer who knows of these things. In the meanwhile, stay by his side and let me know if there's any change."

Ashura drifted through the darkness, searching high and low to see if any other dream seers had those creatures flying through their dreams. Nothing matched yet, but he hope to find one soon.

Ashura repressed his worry over Yuui. It would just distract him from the task at hand. Yuui was so gentle and kind. It pained him to see either of his beloved adoptive sons sick. He had a moment's anger at Fai, but he turned that on himself.

He'd had a feeling Fai's high-spirited, devil-may-care temperament would get him into a situation like this. For all of Fai's upbeat demeanor, there was a darkness to him. That side of Fai was apathetic about his own skin and gave no thought about what it would do to the people he loved if he was hurt.

King Ashura started to feel dread over Fai's sanity if Yuui grew permanently ill or worse. He should have taken a firmer hand with Fai a long time ago instead of spoiling him as much as he did Yuui. Yuui had a meek and humble heart. He could be spoiled and remain good-natured, but Fai was very different.

Fai bucked hard against any boundaries set on him. The bucking was done under the guise of fake smiles, teasing, and charm, but it was still testing to see what he could get away with. Ashura knew his mistake was going out of his way to treat the twins as the same person, rather than as individual children that needed different things from him. He vowed to correct that after this situation was dealt with.

He paused his musing on the twins when he saw the creature drifting over his head. He pushed himself upwards through the dreamscape and landed in a young girl's dreams of an orchard with pink blossoms on the trees. He approached and she gave him a friendly smile.

"I saw you coming in a previous dream. You're on a quest."

"Yes, to save my son. I believe he was attacked by a creature from your realm."

"We call them demons. They struck him?"

"Across his chest. He's been in a sleep ever since. He's growing colder by the hour."

"He's very fortunate. The demon poison usually petrifies a man within an hour."

"He's an extremely powerful mage. It's what's keeping him alive. Also, there are four of these demons loose in my realm. I don't know their habits or how to track them. I need to deal with them, as well."

"I will come to you with one of my demon slayers. We'll need to catch one of the demons and extract poison from it for a cure. You see, if a demon is slain, it only takes minutes before the poison is not fit to use. It must be fresh, otherwise, he'll pass away."

"I had a feeling. I gave an edict for my people to not kill them yet. I am King Ashura, by the way. Thank you."

"I'm Princess Tomoyo. I'll leave at once. Where is your realm?"

"Celes. It's bitterly cold to those from other realms, so please come properly attired." Ashura held his right hand out and traced a series of runes that glowed a bright green. He pointed at Tomoyo's forehead and they sunk in.

"I know how to find you now. Hold on. I'll be there soon."

King Ashura leaped into the air and faded back into his own dream. He woke himself up and threw off his blankets. He quickly got dressed and ran down the hallway to the twins' bedroom. Fai was still gripping Yuui's hand tightly. He looked over at King Ashura, hopeful.

He smiled at Fai and said, "Help is on the way."

"But I should be defending Nihongo Country, not visiting some ice ball," Kurogane sneered after Tomoyo quickly explained their trip. She'd had the ninja dress for deep winter, and she was dressed likewise. "Can't Souma go with you?"

"No, because she's needed here to guide the other shinobi. You're only twenty and in need of this experience. You're father and mother will be pleased that you've taken up such a challenge. It's one thing to slay demons, it's another to catch them. It would show great skill and strength to Lord and Lady Suwa if you were to accomplish this."

"Why are we catching them?"

"There is a young man's life at stake. I can only heal him with demon poison. His father is also worried sick about their land, since those four demons you and Souma saw disappear are now running loose in his land."

"I'll go because you asked. Besides, you do need a bodyguard," Kurogane finally acquiesced. The tipping point in his mind was personally making sure Tomoyo would come back safely.

"Good. Let's go." She held up her hands and a red cloud engulfed them. Kurogane felt pulled into a darkness that lifted moments later. He felt a slight drop, and his feet landed on marble. He looked to Tomoyo and she touched his lips and cast a quick spell. She touched her own lips and cast the same spell. "So we can communicate with the people of this realm," she explained.

He looked around to see a bunch of fair skinned people. All of them wore sullen expressions. It looked like they were in some sort of decadent throne room. A gloomy man with long, black hair rose from a gold chair and walked over to them.

"Thank you so much, Princess. Forgive my lack of hospitality, but time is of the essence. I'm desperate to save Yuui's life."

"Let's go see your son right away," Tomoyo agreed.

To be continued.