Ok, sorry for the long wait. But the plague to all humans called tests, has infected me and prevented me from updating. But I think this chapter makes us for it. There is no Amaya/Sesshomaru lovin', but you will learn about Amaya's past and her family. Its my longest chapter and I think my best one. Enjoy!
Amaya was trapped in a memory.
The memory of the day that shattered her heart and filled her soul with hatred…
206 years ago
The clashing of swords rung throughout the dojo, two figures, male and female danced around each other, exchanging quick blows. The match lasted for a few more minutes before a loud thump was heard.
"And once again the victory goes to the beautiful and all-powerful Amaya!"
Hikaru watched his older sister prance around the dojo, gloating about her latest victory against him. Her purple streaked black hair swished rhythmically back and forth from where it hung in a high ponytail.
Amaya walked over to where her brother sat, identical violet eyes meeting, she held out a hand towards him.
Hikaru grasped her hand tightly, a little too tightly. He looked at her with a wicked smirk before dragging her down to the ground next to him.
"How about a wrestling match, dear sister?"
Amaya narrowed her eyes, "Prepare for defeat."
The two siblings rolled on the ground, fighting for dominance over the other. Pushing, pulling and even biting…
"Ow, Hikaru don't pull my hair, you cheater!"
"Well you bit my ear, who does that anymore?"
The match continued until finally, Amaya was comfortably seated atop her brother's chest. Both were laughing and heaving in gulps of air. Amaya rolled off her brother and reclined next to him, playing with his short black hair.
"I hope one day to be as strong as you, Amaya."
The future ruler of the Eastern Mountains looked at her younger brother, whose violet eyes were sad and filled with longing, a longing to become a great and powerful demon.
"One day, you will be one of the strongest demons in all of Japan, but it will take time. It may even take centuries, but it will happen."
Hikaru looked at his sister with a frown.
"How do you know?"
Amaya gave him a wink before springing up from the floor.
"Older sisters just know these things."
Before Hikaru could respond a feminine voice flowed inside.
"Amaya, Hikaru, come out of the dojo for once in your lives. You spend far too much time in there."
The siblings ran outside, and came face to face with their mother. Lady Harumi was everything a demon lady should be. She was graceful, beautiful and powerful, she was serene and loving, delicate yet strong. Her purple hair was always immaculately styled and flowed just as elegantly as her rich, formal kimono and heavy mokomoko. Her fierce violet eyes captivated all who saw them. But Lady Harumi's most distinguishing feature was her beautiful silver markings that matched brilliantly with the golden star on her forehead.
Amaya did not resemble her mother very much, the most obvious similarity being their shared violet eyes and their low voices. But her brother did, he too shared her violet eyes, delicate physique and silver markings.
"Your father has requested our presence. Go bathe before you meet him. I cannot have my beloved children trailing their offending smell throughout the grounds."
Hikaru's cheeks turned red, while Amaya merely narrowed her eyes in annoyance. The Eastern Lady turned her violet gaze to the servants behind her.
"Yuki, Shiro, please accompany them." The servant siblings bowed and quickly moved behind the taiyokai siblings, with an exclamation of "Yes, my Lady."
Amaya huffed in irritation, hissing harshly "We do not need lowly servants to accompany us."
Lady Harumi glared at her eldest child, "Amaya, you will never become ruler of these lands if you do not learn to respect your subjects."
The young taiyokai merely huffed and began walking away, her brother and their servants trailing behind her.
"Amaya, you really should be nicer to the servants. They work very hard and deserve at least your acknowledgement. When you become ruler, your job will be to protect the people. They will rely on you for protection, guidance and leadership. Besides, the elders say that your only one step away from manifesting your sword, you only have to overcome something that is blocking you from attaining it."
Amaya looked down at her brother, blinking slowly. "You think that to attain my sword I must learn to protect the people?"
Hikaru nodded his head, "You excel at everything else, battle, studies, leadership, arts….this must be it.
"Hmm…, I will confer with the elders later. Now, we must go bathe."
The siblings walked in comfortable silence towards the bathing houses, before they parted ways, Hikaru reached over to Amaya, and drew something from her head.
"You look better with your hair down, more free."
Amaya smiled at her brother, threading her clawed hands through her long locks.
"Maybe I will let it down more often."
Amaya briskly walked towards her father's study, she was late. That stupid servant Yuki had forgotten to fetch fresh towels, and the kimono that was there was inappropriate for a meeting with her strict father. She stopped just outside the entrance to the house, taking a calming breath.
"Do you require anything else, mistress?"
Amaya flicked her eyes over the young maid, then turned and began walking, calling over her shoulder.
"You are dismissed."
When she arrived, her mother and brother were still waiting outside the doors.
"Where is father?"
Lady Harumi looked at her daughter, inspecting her form up and down.
"He is late, but never mind that. Amaya, when will you learn to dress more like a lady and less like an ill-bred traveler. For goodness sakes at least release your mokomoko, it is a sign of your nobility."
The female in question looked down at her clothing, her kimono was simple, dark blue with pink cherry blossoms scattered throughout. She thought it was rather pretty, inappropriate for a meeting, but apparently her mother thought it was hideous and inappropriate.
"I think my clothing is fine, and my mokomoko simply gets in the way. It is difficult to fight with, and therefore unnecessary for me to wear. My star is enough to inform others of my rank anyway."
Before the current Lady could protest, the sound of heavy boots sounded through the hallway. The Lord of the Eastern Mountains, Katsuo, emerged, standing tall and proud. His obsidian eyes calm yet cold, and his black hair bound in an elegant topknot. His two children bowed casually; while Lady Harumi greeted him with a smile and gracefully looped her arm through his, their mokomoko's intertwining.
"Let us begin."
All eyes were on Lord Katsuo, Amaya looked wistfully at his jagged dark blue markings. Longing for the day when she too, would have cheek stripes. The elder sibling looked subtly at her brother, watching him fidget in his seat, and nervously glance around.
"Hikaru." The young demon jumped slightly upon hearing his father's rich voice.
"Your instructors tell me that you have not excelled in your battle lessons, and have yet to defeat Amaya in a sparring match."
"Well, I am younger…but I have done well in my-"
"That is not the point." Lord Katsuo interrupted. "By your age Amaya had already surpassed her instructors. It is evident to me that you will never match you sister. Therefore, I have made the decision to arrange your marriage to one of the daughters of the Northern wolf tribes, to strengthen our alliance."
No one said a word. Everyone was shocked into silence, but the Lord seemed oblivious as he continued uninterrupted.
"I know that you have done well in your literature studies and barrier creations, but that is not enough for a position next to Amaya. You are a distraction to your sister and-"
"This is ridiculous!" Amaya stood up angrily, snarling in anger.
"Hikaru is not a distraction; he is my brother, your son! He is far too young to be married; he only got his hip stripes 20 years ago, dammit!"
Lord Katsuo slammed his palm down on the table; his youki filled the room, making his anger clear.
"Insolent pup. Your impulsiveness will be your down fall, as the next ruler of the lands…"
Again, Amaya interrupted. "Maybe I do not want to be the next ruler. That is all everyone talks about, Amaya you must do this if you wish to become the next ruler, Amaya a lady does not wear that, Amaya as the next ruler you should not say that...Every day it s the same thing! I have done everything you wanted, excelled at everything and now you want to take my happiness away too, so I can become cold and cruel? Is that what a leader should be?"
"Amaya, you have said enough." Lady Harumi snapped sharply at her daughter, violet eyes narrowed.
Amaya opened her mouth again but was stopped by a gentle hand placed on her arm. Amaya look down at Hikaru's hand in surprise.
"It is alright Amaya, I knew this was coming. I have known you would always be better and stronger than me, and that I would never catch up. Sometimes I wonder if my birth was a mistake…"
"Hikaru…" Amaya breathed, gazing sadly at her brother.
The young demon slowly stood up and walked towards the door. Bowing stiffly at his father.
"I apologize for being so weak; I will try my hardest to strengthen our alliance with the Northern wolf tribe. And please forgive Amaya for her outburst; she was merely trying to protect me."
With that, Hikaru left. Amaya stood up to follow, but a strong voice stopped her.
"You will stay, Amaya. Harumi will go."
The Eastern Lady stood up quickly and rushed out the door, leaving father and daughter alone.
"I know this will hurt you, but it must be done."
Amaya glared coldly at her father, "Why?"
Lord Katsuo sighed heavily, "I did this for your brother's benefit. Living with you, under you, has stunted his growth. He is strong, but you are forcing him down with you strength, power and will. I am sure Hikaru will blossom once he is on his own, away from you, from us."
The young demoness stared at him, gazing deeply into his dark eyes for a trace of deceit, but she only found sincerity.
Amaya could not believe this…she was hurting Hikaru? It was incomprehensible, she loved her brother, to think that it was she who was suppressing him and preventing him from reaching his full potential, hurt.
Lord Katsuo watched his daughter; he did not want to hurt any of his children. But his wise eyes had seen the suffocating bond the siblings shared, separation would be good for them, so they each had time to grow, especially Hikaru.
"May I be dismissed?" Amaya's dull voice sounded.
The Eastern Lord nodded and watched as she stood up quickly and practically ran out of the room. Her youki spiraling wildly about her. Katsuo's eyes widened, he had not expected Amaya's youki to be so strong, it almost engulfed his. His black eyes turned to the door, but she was long gone.
'That pup needs to learn control, or she will bring destruction to us all…'
Amaya sat high up in a tree, carving nonsense in its bark with her claws. She felt deeply wounded, and ashamed. How could she have not noticed? It was obvious know that she knew…she was holding her brother back, making him feel worthless. It was terrible.
Suddenly, a scent drifted towards her and Amaya's eyes widened. Blood…
She leapt down, startling several servants working on the gardens.
"Mistress Amaya! What's wrong?"
Amaya trembled with rage and dread, she snarled lowly. "Alert my father, Hikaru and mother have been attacked."
As she sprinted towards her family she faintly heard the servants desperate cries "Mistress, please wait for assistance! You there, go and find Lord Katsuo, tell him our Lady and the young master have been attacked. Mistress Amaya, wait!"
Amaya was nearing the border of the barrier, the scent of blood becoming overpowering. She shuddered nervously as she sprinted, 'There is far more blood than I had originally thought...hold on mother, Hikaru, I'm coming.'
But what Amaya found would haunt her forever. Dozens of bodies lay in the forest; she walked quickly amongst the dead, all panther demons. Most were cut open by claws, their blood spattered across the ground. Towards the middle of the carnage, she found her mother.
The beautiful Lady was covered in blood, her kimono had been ripped to shreds, exposing the wound that had torn open her chest and let her life's blood drain out. Her violet eyes were open wide in fear, a silent scream still present on her bloody lips. Her hand was outstretched, as if reaching for something… That was when she heard the ragged breathing; it was coming from the center of mass of bodies.
Amaya, in a daze walked towards the sound. There her brother lay, his breaths coming in short, wet bursts. The beating of his heart uneven and slow. She crouched next to him and gently scooped him into her arms. Mindful of the gaping wound in his abdomen that steadily leaked out blood.
"Amaya" He rasped
With sad eyes, Amaya touched his face gently. "I am here, Hikaru."
He gazed about the forest "I got a few of them, I tried to stop them, but there were so many…"
Amaya shushed him "You fought very well, I am so proud of you. Come, I will carry you so you can get help."
She slowly began to stand, but a hiss of pain from Hikaru stopped her.
"We both know that I will not make it. But, I want you to know that I love you so much, Amaya. Thank you for always being with me, and protecting me. My beautiful sister, Amaya, don't forget to protect the people. Evil lurks around us, you must be careful."
Hikaru's bloodied hand touched her cheek, her hair, her heart. She hugged him close as his eyes closed.
"I love you as well, Hikaru. Do not worry, I will protect the people, and find out who did this."
She held him as the minutes passed, and eventually he slipped away, Amaya stroking his dark hair until his last breath. The young demoness let out a scream of pure agony, but no tears would come because a taiyokai cannot cry.
Amaya slowly stood up, Hikaru gathered in her arms. She walked towards her mother's body and gently picked her up as well, cradling them like infants.
She took to the sky on a youki cloud, her face expressionless. She landed in the gardens, carefully laying her family members bodies on the ground. She was deaf to the sounds and screams of the servants, who fell to their knees and sobbed openly. She was blind to her father, who crawled to her mother's corpse and lovingly cradled her cold hand, and stroked her pale face. She was numb to the pain.
"What happened" Katsuo breathed brokenly.
With no trace of emotion, Amaya answered "Panther demons attacked them inside the barrier. Someone let them in. Let them murder mother and Hikaru."
The Eastern Lord snarled, and stood up. Yelling at the mass of servants who had amassed at the gardens.
"Who is responsible for this? Who let the panther demons in!"
Amaya watched with glazed eyes as he marched over to Yuki and Shiro.
"You smell like them, why did you let those damned demons in! Why would you allow my mate and son to be slaughtered!"
It was only when her father drew his sword and pointed it towards the trembling pair that she reacted. Hikaru's voice echoing in her head.
"Protect the people."
She stood up on shaky legs as her father continued to yell. Her legs sprinted when she saw the sword begin to speed towards the terrified servants. When she finally became fully aware, her hand was clutching her fathers, preventing the sword from reaching its target.
"Stop. They did not do this."
Lord Katsuo, for the first time, struck his daughter, sending her flying across the garden.
"You have no right to speak, child. You did not make it in time, you let them die! You are to blame here, Amaya!"
The servants, shuffled nervously, but one was brave enough to say something. "My Lord, mistress Amaya rushed to their aid, without a weapon and without help, at the cost of her own life. She is not to blame here."
Amaya touched her cheek, stained with Hikaru's blood and burning with the force of her father's blow. She looked at the little servant girl Yuki, who defiantly glared at the Eastern Lord.
"How dare you speak with such disrespect, a mere servant. You will pay with your life."
Protect the people
Amaya rushed forward, scooping Yuki up in her arms and carrying her to safety.
Protect the people
She dodged her father's strike and struck him in the shoulder with her claws.
Protect the people
She watched as her father's sword glowed blue, and he screamed in rage. Then she felt it, something inside of her was released, a gate opened. Her youki exploded outwards and she could feel something in her hand.
Protect the people
As her father's energy attack raced towards her and the servants behind her, her brothers words raced through her head again.
Protect the people
"I will protect the people!" She screamed as she blocked his attack and ran her new sword through her father's heart.
Time seemed to stop as Amaya's eyes traveled the length of the sword that protruded from her father's chest. The Eastern Lord fell to his knees, blood spilling to the ground.
Lord Katsuo gazed up at his daughters shocked face; he gently touched her cheek, just like Hikaru had done.
"Forgive me, Amaya."
She pulled out the sword in one fluid movement and then dropped it to the ground. She sunk to her knees and held her father as she had done with her brother.
"No, forgive me, father. Please do not leave me, I need you."
But he was already gone, his dark eyes glazed in death. Amaya's cheeks tingled; she looked down at the small stream beside her, which was stained red with her family's blood. There, on her once clear cheeks, were two jagged blue marks.
Hours later, Amaya sat silently in her room. She had washed the blood off of her body, but she could still feel it on her skin, smell it all around. She looked at her appearance; her simple kimono had been replaced with an elaborate golden fabric that hung about her elegantly. She had released her mokomoko, and hung it around her shoulders like her mother once had and added leather armor that clung to her torso like a second skin. Amaya could not bear to look at herself in the mirror, could not bear to see the bold markings that now adorned her face. Once thought of as marks of pride, now were marks of shame.
Amaya made a movement to tie her hair into its normal ponytail but stopped, her brother's voice echoing in her mind.
"You look better with your hair down, more free."
She let her hair drop around her shoulders, but she did not feel free.
Amaya slowly walked outside, where the whole community had gathered upon hearing the news of the ruling family's tragedy. She walked alone.
Eventually, she came face to face with the crowd of frightened on lookers, who desperately looked to her for guidance.
"My people. A great tragedy has befallen us; my brother Hikaru, my mother Lady Harumi and my father Lord Katsuo have been killed. I, Lady Amaya will lead you, guide you, protect you. I will slaughter every panther demon in existence, I will find this traitor who let them in, and I will avenge my family's deaths!"
The next day, the new Lady of the Eastern Mountains, Amaya, headed towards the panther demons village armed with her new sword. But when she arrived, ready for battle, there was nothing.
Not a trace of the village remained, everything was gone, everyone was gone. Amaya let out a scream of pure rage, for she would not see nor hear from the panther demons for another 200 years.
Ok, its done. Phew. I got a little teary writing this. The whole concept behind the markings will be explained next chapter, and there will definitely be some Sesshomaru/Amaya time. Don't forget to review because its makes life better. Thanks for reading!