A/N: I've always loved the stories that go through the series and chronicles KuroFai's relationship, so I thought I'd try my hand at one.
There are only mentions of sex, so no smut or anything. Also, anything italicized and in parentheses (like this) is supposed to be like Kurogane's thoughts. So the dialogue in the parentheses is the dialogue that Kurogane is remembering, so to speak, and anything that isn't dialogue is just Kurogane's thoughts.
One more thing! This does have spoilers of Tokyo and Celes, and the ending! Just thought I'd let you know.
That's all! Enjoy and please review!
When Kurogane first meets Fai, he immediately knows that the wizard is hiding something. He knows too much and acts like he knows too little. He lies about everything—
("I've studied a little magic in my past." But we all know that you're a wizard, that you've done more than just "study a little magic." If you don't want to use magic, just tell us outright that you don't want to use magic!)
—and when he does shed a little bit of light as to who he really is under those fake smiles and annoying nicknames, he's vague and elusive.
(It's not like I care what the idiot does anyway.)
But Kurogane did care, even if he didn't want to admit it. He was curious to find out why Fai lied to everyone he saw with that fake smile, why he refused to tell them anything. When Syaoran had accidently found out about Kurogane's past, the ninja was shocked at first, but then realized that he didn't care. The past was the past, dead and gone. He could mourn over it every now and then and he could feel the pain he felt when it all happened, but he would never let it get in the way of his future, he would never let it distract him from the present.
He would continue to look forward, not constantly (fearfully) look back over his shoulder.
Fai was the complete opposite. Kurogane was sure that if Fai had been the one to open that book, if Syaoran had seen Fai's past instead, then Fai would probably do something suicidal. Kurogane wasn't sure why, but he knew that Fai didn't want anyone to find out anything about him. And he found out that he was right (when the time came to eventually find everything out).
But we'll talk about that later.
Kurogane learned over the course of his journey to be careful what he wished for. He learned that through Fai.
(Because of what happened to Fai. Because of what I did.)
Kurogane wished on a daily basis for Fai to leave him alone, to call him by his real name—("but Kurogane is so boring! How about Kuro-puu, or Kurgy, or Kuro-wan, Kuro-tan, Kuro-sama!")—and to get that disgustingly fake grin off of his lying face.
Then they landed in Tokyo.
("Good morning, Kurogane.")
Kurogane had never felt so many emotions tumble through his veins—when his parents died, there was only anger and sorrow—but now there was (anger, confusion, sadness, relief, bitterness, regret) everything.
Kurogane understood why Fai began acting the way he did. Fai wanted to die, he wanted to end everything—including the rampage of that second Syaoran—but Kurogane couldn't just let him die like that! So instead he cursed him, turned him into a vampire (a monster) because of his own selfish desire to keep him alive.
(But was it selfish? If he had died, Mokona and Syaoran and Sakura would have been sad too.)
And that's why Fai shifted his attention from Kurogane to Sakura as they changed worlds. The one-eyed blonde gave Sakura his undivided attention and loyalty because the princess had single-handedly been able to worm her way into the spiteful magician's heart—("I'm so happy that you're alive, Fai.")
But Kurogane was happy he was alive too, so why couldn't Fai give him the same attention, why couldn't Fai at least look at him without that look of loathing in his one eye?
(Because no matter what the princess said, it doesn't change the fact that I took away his choice and turned him into something he didn't want to become.)
And then, two girls who looked identical appeared—girls that Fai seemed to know—and one of them said something about Ashura and everything began to blur together for Kurogane after that.
But Kurogane will always vividly remember Fai stepping forward as if in a trance and plunging that sword straight through the princess' middle.
(We all knew that the princess was okay—she caressed Fai's cheek and told him so herself—we all knew, all we had to do now was find her—)
But Fai still cracked and for the first time, Kurogane felt the full extent (no, not full, only half) of Fai's magic. Kurogane's eyes widened as the magic split through the rocks around them, the blue streaks of light zipping through the air like lightening.
Kurogane had never felt such force come from anyone before, whether it be from magic or brute strength. Kurogane knew that Fai refused to use magic, but was this why? Was it because Fai was just so powerful?
In the end, it was Kurogane who grabbed Fai's wrist, who got the mage to calm down ("Don't hurt anyone else with that sword—including yourself.") and then the mage began telling some truth.
("Sorry. I lied about that too.")
And then the truth had been forced down their throats.
If Kurogane could forget what he had seen, he would (because I know more than anything that Fai would want me to).
Fai's past being forced into his mind, all of the secrets that even Fai himself didn't know being revealed.
The damned twins, forced to the valley, Fai—no, Yui—trying to climb up the side of the tower (Fai had always been a bit sensitive when it came to his fingers and now everyone knew why—because they had constantly been scraped and rubbed raw in freezing temperatures against a rough brick wall). Fei Wang Reed intervening, giving Fai—Yui—an ultimatum (but what happened wasn't what Fai wanted, but Fai didn't know that, and now everyone knows why Fai cares so little for his own life—because he wasn't supposed to be alive in the first place) and in the end Fai's beloved twin brother—the real Fai, the one whose name was stolen—was killed and Fai—Yui!—was taken away by Ashura.
Kurogane learned that he was wrong about what would happen if they learned of Fai's past. Fai didn't become suicidal; he became homicidal ("I can't die until I give Fai his life and name back!"). Kurogane didn't know what to do when Fai turned on him (instead of the man who used him, loved him, tried to kill him). Fai's arm was wrapped securely around his brother—or the shell of what his brother used to be—and Fai's other hand was shaking as he began writing out a spell.
Kurogane knew that Fai couldn't kill Ashura (the monster) himself, so Kurogane ignored the seal placed on him by Tomoyo and killed Ashura and it felt so good to free Fai of that tormentor.
(But Fai would still be tormented, and we all knew it. "It's all my fault… I couldn't let him rest… Fai… I'm so sorry…")
And then they tried to leave and (oh god, what have I done?) the world began collapsing around them, all because Kurogane had killed Ashura—because Fai was the one that was supposed to do it.
And when Fai's magic ran out, when he choked up blood and stared (horrified) at the ground, Kurogane knew he was scared. His magic was not enough. He was going to die.
(But even though he was scared, he still refused to do anything to fight for his life—"GO!"—but maybe he knew that nothing he tried to do would make a difference.)
Kurogane was at a loss because after everything they had been through, after everything Kurogane had done to keep Fai alive (like throw away the relationship I didn't know I wanted), was there nothing he could do? Was it like the damn witch said? Was this all meant to be? Was Fai just… Meant to die?
But then Kurogane heard someone—Tomoyo. ("If you want to save him, you have to leave behind something that has his magic.") Kurogane let go of the magician, and he could see Fai's relief.
And he pulled out his sword and ignored any fear because any fear he was feeling was nothing compared to what Fai was feeling. And he pushed the blade through flesh and bone and grabbed the mage who was so shocked he couldn't even move.
And then… Kurogane closed his eyes.
And opened them in Nihon.
And everything felt so… Right (even though my left arm was gone).
Fai was back to normal—no, he was better than back to normal. Fai was simply… Fai.
("That's payback, Kuro-sama.")
Kurogane watched their relationship slowly morph into more after that. Fai gave up his magic, but looked at Kurogane with happiness and mischief shining in that one golden eye. He let himself become close to Kurogane because there was nothing to hide anymore—all of his secrets had been laid out bare for Kurogane to see.
After getting his prosthetic arm from Piffle, Kurogane and Fai sat outside with a bottle of sake between them, and Kurogane told Fai of his past (and it was so nice to feel that slim hand on my shoulder because it let me know that our secrets were dead).
And then Fai let himself become even closer, even more vulnerable. He let Kurogane's real arm release the ribbon tying his hair back and he let Kurogane's slightly chapped lips connect with his own.
(But that was as far as we got. "We're not done yet; we still have to face him. I can't… If I say it out loud… If it becomes real and then something happens to you—or to me—then I would—")
Kurogane had kissed him again to shut him up and said that he understood. So, from then on, the two only became intimate when Fai had to feed. They let themselves indulge in the feeling of each other (in the feeling of my hands around his hips, his lips on my neck) during these moments, but pretended to forget that anything had happened when they were done.
And while in Clow (an interesting way to end our journey, by visiting each of our home worlds) the two of them found out about Syaoran and Sakura's detailed and slightly confusing past.
But Kurogane didn't care. The past was the past, dead and gone. Now all he had to do was make Fei Wang Reed part of it. And when he did…
Kurogane had never felt anything more satisfying—more liberating—than feeling Fai's magic surrounding him as he plunged his sword through that man's chest.
(I didn't think much of the fact that Fai had gotten his magic—and his eye—back. I watched in shock when it happened, but I couldn't let myself become distracted by it. Not in the middle of a battle.)
So Kurogane waited until everything was finally over, until his wounds were bandaged and he was back in the room that had been provided for him. He didn't turn when the door opened silently—he knew who it was. The soft, barely there (if I hadn't have been trained in stealth, I probably wouldn't have heard them) footsteps that came from one person.
Fai came up next to Kurogane and smiled, and Kurogane let himself fall into the depths of those blue eyes that he missed so much. Fai began mumbling quietly about how he really couldn't whistle ("I mean, I can, but if I do then a spell will be cast.") and Kurogane kissed him to shut him up. And then Fai smiled and pulled away and whistled a sweet tune, the notes wrapping around Kurogane like a heavy blanket.
("A charm. Now no one will hear us.")
So that night, despite being injured, the two made it work. Fai had been on top (as in he was riding me—oh come on, like you perverts care if I'm specific. I was too injured to be on top of him, so he took the lead. But there's no way I'd actually bottom. We tried that once—later, in another world—and I didn't like it as much as Fai thought I would) and the two moved together in perfect harmony, like their bodies had been made for each other.
But then again, maybe it goes back to what that witch said. Everything is predetermined—maybe their bodies really were made for each other.
Kurogane decided to travel with Syaoran, and Fai had been shocked ("What about Nihon?"). Kurogane simply shrugged and said that Nihon would always been there, and then turned to Fai to ask him what he would do.
Fai gave a smile that seemed just a tad bitter.
("It's not like I have a home to go back to anymore, now do I?")
And that's how the decision was made that the two would travel with Syaoran and Mokona.
(It wasn't brought up again until we actually left and landed in some new world. That night, with the kid and the pork bun sleeping in one room and Fai and I sleeping in the other, the topic resurfaced. "You ever wonder what you'll do when you eventually want to stop travelling? Because I think I know." He was annoyingly quiet and I had to pester him to reveal what he was thinking. "Well… What if the two of us went back to Nihon together? I wouldn't mind learning the language…")
So, the two continued to travel with Syaoran and Mokona for years, often visiting Clow and Nihon (Fai loved to visit Nihon. He had an artist draw up a sketch of what Fai would have looked like when he was a child—a perfect sketch of the real Fai, the one that had died. In my room, we set up a little shrine with the sketches of his brother and of my parents. Fai loved to visit Nihon so that he could pray for his brother).
All the while, Kurogane was teaching Fai Nihongo, the two always leaving Syaoran and Mokona for a day or two to stay in some hotel or camp out in the woods, far enough away that Mokona couldn't translate what they were saying. It only took a couple of years for Fai to become fluent.
As the years passed, Kurogane noticed that Fai didn't look a day older than he had when they first met (maybe a bit more mature, a bit more wise, but that was it). Kurogane knew that he probably didn't look any older to Fai, either. The witch had told him when Fai had turned into a vampire; Kurogane's aging would slow to the same as Fai's. Even though Fai had gotten his magic back and no longer needed the vampire blood to keep him alive, Kurogane's changes stayed.
(And speaking of the whole vampire thing, Fai doesn't need to feed anymore. But he still has his vampire qualities—like those goddamn nails. Even though he doesn't need to, he'll drink my blood sometimes. It's like a luxury to him. He said it's like drinking a really expensive bottle of wine. He doesn't do it often though. Only sometimes, and only when we're in… private.)
And the day eventually came where the party landed back in Nihon (we visited Clow to explain everything to the princess, but Fai promised that they'd visit—his magic could take them to Clow whenever they wanted). The goodbyes were long and Kurogane refused to admit that he would miss the kid and even the pork bun. But he indulged Mokona a bit by throwing her high into the air and then catching her, and he ruffled Syaoran's hair and gave him the same smile his father used to give him. The, I'm-Proud-Of-You, smile.
And then the pork bun and the kid left, and Kurogane and Fai were left to start their lives together.
Tomoyo had revealed to them that, while Kurogane had been gone, they had rebuilt Suwa. Then, much to Kurogane's surprise, she relieved him of his duty as her guard and appointed him Guardian of Suwa. Then she turned to Fai and appointed him Priest of Suwa.
("A guardian always needs a priest by his side.")
So Kurogane took Fai with him, back to Suwa, back to where he was raised. The buildings were exactly the same as they had been when he was younger. It looked as if nothing had happened (and honestly, I half expected my father to walk out and ruffle my hair like he used to). People were living in the town with a temporary guardian as they waited for Kurogane's return, and men had even been appointed to be Kurogane's guards (but really, they were just my helpers, my right-hand men. It's not like I needed a guard or anything).
And when Fai had been brought out in traditional robes made of the finest silk, his hair (which had grown down to between his shoulder blades) tied back with a ribbon that matched the silk, Kurogane wasn't surprised that many of the men—and women—confused him for a girl. When he spoke in Nihongo with a little accent that Kurogane secretly loved, everyone was shocked because that obviously wasn't the voice of a woman.
And so, time just went on, just like that. Fai became very popular in the village because of the strong magic barriers he was able to place around them in case of an attack, and because of his soft eyes, his warm smile, the way he could make a grieving widower feel a bit better just by assuring her that he would pray for her husband.
And as for Kurogane… Well, everyone knew who he was. The young lord of Suwa who had been the only survivor of a vicious demon attack, the lord who gave up his title to serve Tomoyo, the lord who became the strongest in the land and was now protecting them. When Kurogane would stroll through the village, many young men and women would bring him gifts ("The finest silk I could find! I stitched in the flowers myself. I thought you could give it to Fai!" "Sweet sake, the best in Nihon!") simply for his service.
And every night, Kurogane would step into the private bedroom he and Fai shared in the large estate, the one that Kurogane kept off limits from everyone but himself and Fai, the one that had a sliding door that led out to a wooden deck that was shadowed by a large cherry blossom tree.
Fai would usually be in the process of brushing his hair (I was the only one that ever got to see it down), which had grown to the middle point of his back (I told him I liked his hair long, so he grew it out. But he refused to let it grow out any longer than his middle back).
The two would step out onto the deck (if it were warm) or curl up close together in front of the fire (if it were cold). This particular night, it was warm, the air heavy with humidity and making Fai's hair curl even more than usual.
("Don't bother tying your hair back up. Just leave it down and drink some of this sake I was given." I tried to seem casual about it, but really I just wanted to be able to run my fingers through his hair.)
The two ended up in simple kimonos and sitting outside, under the setting sun and the falling cherry blossoms. Fai tilted his head back and Kurogane watched as the ends of his gold (brighter than the sun) hair pooled on the wood. Fai opened his bright blue (bluer than any sea or sky I had ever seen) eyes and peered at Kurogane as the taller man ran his fingers through the tresses.
Fai sat up straighter and scooted closer to Kurogane while sipping his sake, and Kurogane gathered a piece of the long, golden hair in his hand, running the silk-like strands over his fingers.
Kurogane closed his eyes and bowed his head as he brought the hair up to his lips and kissed it gently, looking up at Fai as he did so and watched as the mage stared at him with wide eyes, a smile slowly growing on his face.
(I don't think I ever told him about how my father would do the same with my mother's hair, but he still seemed to feel the importance of the gesture. It soon became a habit for me to kiss his hair before we parted—I'd kiss the strands, then kiss his lips, and then leave.)
That night, Fai pulled Kurogane into their bedroom, opened his kimono and lied down on the futon, his skin practically glowing because of the contrast of the black silk under him. Kurogane ran his hands over every inch of the pale skin (Fai was the fairest person in all of Nihon—even fairer than Tomoyo), loving the feeling of the soft skin against his calloused hands.
Sometimes they did this (had sex, slept together, made love, whatever you wanna call it) and sometimes they simply opened the sliding door and let the moonlight wash over them and just lied together on the futon, occasionally sharing a kiss every now and then. Kurogane loved both because either way, his arms were around Fai.
That night, after Kurogane had closed the sliding door and blew out the candle that was lighting their room, Fai was fast asleep—he always fell asleep first—with one arm thrown over Kurogane's body and the other propping his head up a bit. Kurogane smiled a bit as he watched the mage sleep peacefully, despite all that he (we) had been through.
But, Kurogane decided, all that they had been through just led up to that moment, and whatever was happening in the present moment. It shaped who they were, and what they became.
And, Kurogane thought as he let himself drift off to sleep, they were finally at peace. No matter what happened during the day, as soon as he got home to Fai, he was reminded that this is what their journey had really led up to. Peace.