I was rewatching the series and couldn't resist my own little take on the Hei and Yin relationship. Takes place a couple of months after the end of Sousei no Gemini ends.

Disclaimer: I do not own any of the Darker than Black franchise.


A Strange Compatablilty

They were back again.

The strapping young man- who, Yukiko thought, she wouldn't have minded having a go at if she had been fifty years younger- and his silver haired little wife. The two always came on Wednesday mornings for groceries at Hashiyama-san's shop across from the little tea house Yukiko and her late husband had opened some forty odd years ago, and stopped by for tea and sweets on the way home, though that routine had only started two weeks ago.

After a few weeks of surreptiously watching the couple, Yukiko came to the conclusion that the young woman was blind. It took a little while for her to figure it out, as the girl was very good at navigating around, but the unfocussed look to her violet eyes was very similar to how Jin-san's eyes looked after he had lost his sight from a stroke. Though her husband was always with her on their excursions, and he tended to stick close to her. It was so sweet how he always held her hand, like she would get lost if he didn't have a firm hold on her.

(Yukiko had to be very sneaky about her new hobby, as her daughter was very upset and embarrassed when she had caught her mother stuck up against the window watching across the street. Yuka had threatened to take her binoculars away if she caught her at it again. Bah! As if she could find them all.)

It was hard not to notice them, and not just because Yukiko knew most of the people who shopped in this district. The girl was obviously a foreigner, with her silver hair and strange, light violet eyes. Harder to place was the young man, who, after a little bit of contemplation, Yukiko decided was from the mainland.* She excused her passive voyeurism by telling herself she was old and entitled to her snooping.

They should have made a strange couple. The man was a little older than his companion, a good couple of heads taller than her, rough around the edges, and dark; not just in coloring, but in the air around him. His complete contrast, the girl was all pale lines and soft curves; quiet, small, and so very delicate looking. But somehow, the two seemed to fit perfectly together, like living embodiments of yin and yang.

Yukiko had started seeing them a couple of months ago, a little after the big fiasco in Tokyo about the Gate. There hadn't been any confirmation from the authorities, of course, but she had seen enough in the last few years on the news that if there was an incident in that area, it was about the Gate.

The man, Li Jian, was the new assistant chef at Akibara's a few streets over. The owner's wife and Yukiko had grown up together and were members of the same book club (which was really just an excuse for some old ladies of her generation to get together and gossip) that met up once a week. The young man and his foreign wife had been a hot topic for a good few meetings. Hanako-chan, the one with the most contact with either of the two young people, raved about how Li-san was such a good worker and how the restaurant hadn't been as busy as it was now in years. His food was good, he made it quickly and efficiently, and so many more young people stopped by (as well as quite a few middle-aged women), she informed them all one evening with a twinkle in her eye.

And for a long time that, and the weekly grocery run was all the interaction Yukiko had with the couple. Until one Wednesday afternoon a couple weeks ago the Lis had been off their routine. Yukiko had been watching out the window with increasing worry as the hours dragged by and morning turned into afternoon. She couldn't help fretting over them.

From all that she had gleaned from the gossip grapevine, the young wife hardly ever left their small apartment, and never without her husband. Yukiko might have suspected abuse if she had seen the couple interact together for so long. Both were very quiet, and hardly seemed to feel the need to talk. But she had seen how Li-san would quietly steer his wife out of unseen obstacles and the small smiles he seemed to reserve just for her when no one else was looking. Or how the girl would grab hold of her husband's hand at random moments, content as long as he was within reach.

So when the bell on her shop door rang Yukiko was startled out of her musing, and was slightly shocked to see the couple coming in the door, being greeted and shown to an open table by her youngest daughter. The old woman quickly grabbed a pot to begin boiling water while she covertly snuck glances at her newest customers.

The girl –Yukiko couldn't recall her name (curse her failing memory!)– looked to be almost visibly happy (which was a change from her usually blank expression). She couldn't quite put her finger on what was different, but she almost had an aura of glowing around her. And Li-san was wearing the shocked and vaguely panicked look of one who has heard life changing news and is not quite sure how to handle it yet.

Ah, Yukiko thought to herself with the indulgent smile of one who has seen the light and knows the joys and pains of the coming ordeal. I see.

When her daughter brings the Li's order, Yukiko takes it upon herself to bring it to them personally, ostensibly to "welcome them to our tea house."

So Yukiko eagerly plays the nosy old woman; greeting her customers, finding out their names properly (the man politely introduces himself as Hei and his wife as Yin), and the proprietress makes small talk with the couple. When Yukiko discovers that Yin plays the piano she excitedly goes to a far corner of the shop that had sat unused since her husband Keiichi had passed away three summers ago, and pulled a sheet off his old piano.

It didn't take much coaxing for the silver haired young woman to take up a seat on the bench and start to play. The music that came flowing from her delicate, long-fingered hands(pianist hands, her husband would say) made Yukiko smile in satisfaction.

Yukiko sat back and watched as all the other customers in the room turned to the source of the music, enraptured. She was really very good. People out in the streets heard it and came in, ordering drinks and snacks while they listened. And it gave Yukiko a wonderful idea.

When Yin was finished, the old woman made her offer. After some polite haggling both parties were satisfied with their deal, and had an informal contract written up. Yin would come in a few times a week to play the piano for the shop's customers during the lunch rush (escorted by Hei during his breaks) and Yukiko would pay her a small wage each week.

Yukiko had a feeling they would need the extra money soon.

The next week on grocery day Yukiko wasn't surprised to see small, bright clothes peeking out of their shopping bags as they came in for tea. She had smiled to the couple and waved as they passed down the road.

She heard the jangle of the bell above the shop door. Yukiko turned around with a smile.

"Li-san, Yin-chan, welcome back."


*It means Hei is from China. If you'll remember, Hei's old landlady had used that term when he first moved in.

Some of my favorite episodes (besides those featuring Hei and Yin together) were the ones with outside characters (Kurosawa Gai, Kiko and her friend, and the other lady cop into writing fanfiction) interacting with the Syndicate group. It is neat to see what the characters look like from the outside looking in, and that's how this fic was born.

I know this is random, and doesn't really explain Hei and Yin's situation much, but I thought it was something that might realistically happen. Remember, Izanami had promised to grant Yin a wish at the end of the gaiden, and before she had said that she wanted to stay with Hei as she had been for always. So now that no one is certain if they're alive or dead I figure if they did settle down somewhere it would be safe to do so in Japan because there would be no record of them leaving and most would assume they would escape to a different country, and with the governments in turmoil again it would be hard to organize a search right away. So they would be effectively hiding under everyone's noses. This would take place in a relatively large town (not a city).

Also, did everyone get what I was hinting at in the end?

Questions, comments, concerns, opinions? All are welcome!

~Moonlight Through the Water