Chapter Seven: "iridescent Dreams"
The place was creepier than any other place she'd seen. She had no idea why it seemed that way.
Why would a forest, a nature that looked untouched, be creepy?
She couldn't answer that. And didn't want to. She was too confused, angry, tired ...
... to even bother thinking.
Raine kept walking in the forest. And walking, as if it never got to an end ...
" What is this place? " Kazuma asked looking around as if dazzled.
" Like, hello, the densetsunians' land! " Yusuke butted in, gesturing a knock on his forehead, as if out of stupidity.
Hiei rolled his eyes.
" Come on, you guys, we have to hurry," Kurama said, glancing at boys.
" Why such a hurry? " Kazuma questioned again.
" It's getting dark. If we don't get there until sunset, at least we should find a shelter. We have no idea what creatures live here," he spoke.
" Well, " Yusuke said as if he knew everything. " The densetsunians." he said dumfounded. He was acting very happy. Or excited? Wonder why.
" We know that, Yusuke." Koenma said finally.
" Let's hurry up then, " the red head said, fastening his pace. -
" Uh ..." she breathed heavily, supporting herself on a tree. It was night. She was so tired from all the running, excitement, anger, and the mixture of them all together. Her gaze, eyes closed, towards the tree she was leaned on.
She felt a hand on her shoulder and her senses caught in - she jumped, gasping. Darn. I wasn't paying attention. Otherwise I would have known someone's here.
They had no choice but to stop their search and rest until it was light again. So they did..
But Kurama was, of course, restless.
He knew she wasn't in danger.
After all, she was home.
They'd never hurt her - logic said so.
But he couldn't help but be worried.
What will he say to her?
When he'll see her?
Say again, those sorries she hates?
At least it would seem normal.
Yet, nothing seemed normal, if it was related to her.
Truly, everything she did, was the opposite of what you thought.
That's the good part of it, though. Being with someone who you know what's gonna do already is dead-boring.
" Come. " a low voice said softly.
Ok. Not an enemy.
Then she realized how stupid she was acting. Duh, I'm .. home. Why would they hurt me?
Raine looked at the man beside her. She couldn't get a good look at him, since she barely saw anything. He was in some regular pants, a lime green blouse, golden eyes and straight blue hair. Nice. She mentally added, afterwards scolding herself for letting such thoughts enter her mind.
She took the hand he offered, as he leaded her to a dome. It was a big house. On the way, she glanced at the simple houses that sat on the edge of the 'road' they were walking on. There were houses everywhere. Though she couldn't see everything, she knew this place, 'The Land of Spir' was a huge territory.
Getting to big building - the dome - she entered, and the man left with a " Goodnight, miss Raine." That only left her giggling under her breath for being treated as such.
She was going to get used to such things right? Being treated this way. Like a princess. Nah, that's too girly, she argued with herself. Queen? Too ... need-for-respect. She dismissed the second thought as well. How about deity? Or goddess? She shrugged. She's none of that. Why treat her this way? It would only make her feel worse. As if she's was, indeed, a throned princess. She never felt so 'royal'. Never had a need for respect.
She gasped again when a male's voice reached her ears.
Then, she felt the world had changed in matter of seconds. Her gaze couldn't have been more intense. She studied the man in front of her.
" Father? " an unconscious smile crept on her lips.
He smiled back. " Come on. We have much to talk about." Though in an other case, she would have dropped dead.. this case she knew he was his father; he was too young to seem a father, though. He didn't look more than 30. That only left her amazed. " I know you're new to all this. Don't worry about anything, Raine. All you'll find here is happiness. And complete love. Yes .. you will find love everywhere. That's all you have to know about this place. Soon you'll know all the other things that need to be known. "
" I understand," she said silently.
" And I'm not talking about the rules. How to act like a heir. A queen. Princess. Deity or goddess," he said, eyes closed, with a smile on his young features. He cupped her face, looking in her eyes.
She blushed a bit, in embarrassment. He probably red her thoughts. She should have known that!
She nodded. " I'm glad. I'm not good at acting."
He sighed. " Julie here will help you get some clothing. If you need anything, you know where to find me." He said, leaving the building.
A young, yellowish-brown haired woman entered the room, a soft smile on her lips.
" Come, child."
She smiled. Raine couldn't help but smile, when they were treating her this good. She never wanted anything, but to be treated like a person.
As they left the room, a hall was in front of them. One in front, one on the left and one on the right. Julie leaded her to the left (where also were stairs) , where a door was. Going in, the room was blank. It had a few windows, light brown walls and light green floor.
Why was it blank?
Before she knew it, there were many materials. Different colors, sizes, etc. She was in awe. Had she been that tired that she didn't see them? She shook her head in frustration and took a few steps towards Julie, when she glanced at her.
" Take off your clothes. "
" .. Why? " she said confused.
" Not all of them, silly."
She silently took off her blouse and pants. She was in her bra and undies. The girl was feeling a bit awkward.
" What color? " Julie said.
" Huh? Umm .. dark red."
The woman placed a dark red material (plat clothing) on her chest. In just matter of seconds, it wrapped itself on her slim form, creating a blouse. She gasped.
Julie smirked. " This is Spir, " she gestured with her hands. The dark red blouse had reached her knees (a bit upper than knees), and covered her hands, fingers. She frowned. " Manage it after your own liking."
" Alright. How? "
" Imagine. Believe." she said simply. Surely she didn't mean that, right? It was too simple to be true. " Don't think about the stupid things they teached you in Human world. Do it."
" Umm .." she nodded. Raine motioned her pointing finger in the air, just above her collarbone, tracing a line (from her left shoulder to her right shoulder).
The material she sliced fell to the ground now. She was in awe again. Julie's soft gaze encouraged her to continue.
She made a few more cuts on the clothing - she liked it that way. She left space for her fingers (you know, those mountain-bike-thingie gloves) and adjusted it a bit.
Julie leaned closer, now putting a black leather-like material to her legs. Just as the crimson clothing, it wrapped itself around her lower body, reaching her stomache, just like any pants. Thought this one was fixed on her body.
" Like it?" the woman asked.
" Yeah!" Raine had an idea. She concentrated, and triumphantly created boots for herself. They were knee-boots.
" Nice, " Julie commented. " Anything else? "
" Nah. That's enough. " Suddenly, a thought popped in her mind. " What time is it? "
She frowned. She would have expected something like, '9 am or pm'.
" Um.." She rubbed the back of the head, confused.
" Oh yes. I almost forgot. Just so that you know, February is the month when the densetsunians mate."
As she spoke the word 'mate', Raine blushed. Why was she telling her this? Surely there was a reason. Ack. whatever. She nervously closed the topic. She nodded.
Julie smiled. " You're tired, aren't you? Get some rest, alright? You'll find a room that fits your tastes upstairs."
" Goodnight." the girl said leaving the room.
As she walked upstairs, she noticed the clean outlook. Or was it blank?
Reaching to the end, she entered a room, closing it's door behind her. In front of her was a hall. On the right there were 4 roms. On the left, just 2. The only light there was was coming from the window, she noted - which now wasn't visible though. It was night after all. Still, these rooms were somehow illuminated. She didn't see any light bulbs. No candles. Or anything alike. That just freaked her out.
Raine shrugged, shaking the thoughts that were pinching her mind.
Suddenly, she stopped.
Melancholy took over her.
She hadn't sensed his ki at all.
He didn't come ...
Or wa it because of the forest? Some mystical attributes that disallowed such things? That would be too weird.
Yet, she preferred that better.
But logic told her otherwise.
Slowly, she took some the steps, leaning on the wall, tracing rebel lines on it. Her gaze lowered, eyes closed. She reached the 4th room (the last one, near the window) and entered it.
She was shocked. Again. Boy, did these densetsunian things freak her out. She shook her head in frustration.
The room was blank.
" Awesome." she said sarcastically, her back against the wall. The room had a slight tint or yellow light. Yet, dark. " Just my kind of type." a smirk formed on her porcelain features.
Slowly, she glanced around the room. Not as if there was something to look at ... but still.
Softly, she leaned on the wall (on the right of the room), closing her eyes.
I can be a deity, goddess, queen, princess or anything else in this world.
I can have everything I want - almost -
... but I don't want any of it if you're not here with me.
What else would you expect from me. She said softly.
I shouldn't have left.
She slid down, her back against the wall. She closed her eyes, and fell asleep.
My body feels heavy. So heavy ... Warmth is overwhelming me ...
My breathing is also heavy. I feel like choking. I can barely breathe. I'm feeling excited.
I see someone.
Staring at me.
Staring? That couldn't be called staring..
... his gaze ...
His intense, desiring gaze is eating me. Every inch in my body. Sending shivers down my spine.
He's got a slight smirk on his lips.
He leans closer.
What is he doing?
I'm trembling ... my hand is shaky - I noticed - as I put my hand on my heart.
I'm only wearing a bra and underpants.
What's going on?
He's so close. His face finally touches mine --
He kisses me.
A feeling builds up within my stomache..
He slides his tongue in my mouth.
She woke up panting. Her chest pumping heavily, she could barely breathe.
" What .. was that?" she asked herself.
Had it been .. a vision? Glimpse of the near-by future? Things like this happened before.
But ... who was that man? That had golden eyes?
As she wondered, her hands were still trembling from the intensity of the dream. It was so real!
Golden eyes ... She couldn't help but gasp, as reality took over.
Was it the man .. she saw earlier? How could it be possible? Would the densetsunians do such a thing?
" February is the month when the densetsunians mate. "
''' end flashback '''
" No .." she cries softly.
Would they be capable of such things?
She was the heir after all.
And her so-called father told her she doesn't need to know usual things like, act as a queen or princess. That was another proof. Why would she have to need for knowing such things, if she was a breeding center?
The cruel reality only make her feel terrible. More than she felt? That couldn't be possible.
Did she dug her own trap?
Slowly, she sat up, supporting herself on the wall. Her face touched the wall. She didn't bother opening them. Tears were streaming from her eyes.
She couldn't stop them.
Anger started building up in her.
Placing her hands on the walls, she traced lines. All over the room. Slowly.
But now, unlike any other times, she used herself to ease the inner pain -- with out pain. As Julie teached her, she imagined knives cutting her hand. Her right hand - a soft line, though deep cut. She had made another wound - above her collarbone. She silently screamed, still angered.
Continuing her morbid game, until the room had neat lines of blood.
The scent of blood.
I should have stayed.
You were the reason I should have stayed.
But I didn't.
I came here..
How will I ever forgive myself?
This reality is all I've got - besides you.
Yet, how can I call this reality?
It seems like a dream.
I can do things I've never imagined I could.
Yet, you're far away.
I can't feel you.
All she could think of was he didn't come after her. Yet, her letter told him so.
That was one option.
The other one was that the forest had a mystical attribute, that somehow had denied such things. Sounded too weird. But this place was nothing but weird.
Yet again, reality told her the first option.
Intoxicating her nose. Unable to do anything, she fell to her knees.
She gasped. Rose petals were falling. Gently caressing her features. She looked up, opening her eyes; they were falling from the ceiling.
That only added to this place's scariness.
Have I been thinking of him and our first meeting so much?
That I haven't even realized it?
I'm losing touch.. She admitted to herself. I miss you so much, it aches. Has it been so long?
Before she knew it, the room was full of rose petals. She fell on her back. Stretching her right hand, she wanted to grasp something. She didn't know what.
To her surprise, she grabbed a rose.
The only rose.
Her melancholic features deepened, reminding her of Kurama.
She squeezed the rose, it's thorns cutting her even more - damaging her wound more.
Then, she let go.
Raine fell asleep.
The ghost of my memories with you.
Morbid romance, she chuckled, miserably.
Morning. They had woken up early in the morning to continue their journey - to find her.
" Aw, we're walking in circles! " Kuwabara noted, annoyed.
Kurama lowered his gaze, " I'm sorry. This forest is confusing me. I can't understand it. I haven't seen these trees before, yet I think we've been here, " he said sighing.
" Fox, you're smart. Figure it out." Hiei added.
He just nodded, and led the way.
Somehow, they managed to reach the end of the dense forest, glancing upon a place. The place. The land of Spir (I honestly don't know how I came up with such a name -.-;).
Kurama, Kuwabara, Hiei, Yusuke and Koenma - they were in awe.
" It's beautiful, " Koenma said, dazzled.
The place was huge. Calling it a village was too .. underestimating.
Small, yet neat houses were everywhere. The place was built in a somewhat lower terrain. It looked like there had been a huge lake that had dried down, this town being built instead of it. (Am I making sense? o.O)
While walking in the 'village', they noticed the gardens and especially roses. The people here looked different from each other. Blue hair, golden eyes. Brown hair, brown eyes. Red hair, green eyes. Blond hair, blue eyes. There wasn't someone that didn't match a color-palette you could just think up in seconds.
" The dome, " Kurama pointed as he saw a large building. " Let's go." The others followed.
Silently entering the dome, a young man - Raine's father - spotted them.
" Welcome," he said kindly.
Surprise was written on their features. Koenma, especially, he expected something way more bad.
" Milord, " Kurama introduced himself.
" Kurama. " He sighed. The fox's eyes widened. " I appreciate you came here. Koenma, " he looked at him, " Thank you for bringing Raine back. I welcome you to stay as long as you want. You'll find everything you need here." The man finished glancing at Kurama. " I want to speak to you. " Then, he pointed at the others. " Feel free to look around the place. I'm sure you'll find something interesting."
Hiei rolled his eyes, obeying, just as the others left the building.
Kurama looked at his friends leaving. He was going to have quite a chat.
I need to talk to Raine as soon as possible. He thought.
" Do you love her?" he asked, his back turned, as he looked at the blank wall.
His question had shaken him up.
He never thought about this. How could he ? After all ... the letter she wrote. Simple moments spent together.
Why did he bother coming after her?
Because his heart said so.
Yet, he didn't answer. The red headed male thought the world was crashing down on him. He couldn't bring himself to speak.
Finally, these words escaped his lips as he thought of her, " Yes. " He said determined.
" You just took a step towards her heart, " the man said wisely. " She's upstairs."
He pointed to the hall. Kurama walked up the stairs, unsure thoughts in his mind.
What will she say to me?
After what happened...
It seemed like he hadn't seen her for months. In fact, it might have been months. It was February after all. Perhaps the time was different here.
He silently hoped he wouldn't do anything wrong again.
What will she say?
How will she act?
Childish thoughts blazing in his mind, as he entered the room, closing the door behind.
He looked in front of him.
She was there. In front of the second room from the left. Her gaze towards him. Melancholic ...
His heart nearly skipped a beat.
She looked different. Yes, her attire was different. But she hasn't changed, he admitted to himself.
Suddenly, she broke his gaze by roughly opening the door and closing it.
He was now confused. Was she angry on him? Why would she be? Or, why wouldn't she be.
He was there in an instant.
" Raine, open up." he asked softly. " Don't do this ... " he closed his eyes, as his back was against the door.
He should have expected this.
Raine, on the other hand, was shaken. Of course she was.
She also didn't want him to see her like this. She had two major cuts, one on her hand, another on her collarbone - which she did herself. She need to get washed. The room she was in was the bathroom. Yay .. She thought.
Now what to do ?
She could take a shower. Take off my clothes? She asked herself. She shook her head. Oh yeah, she'd def like that. Kurama braking in any minute now. Curiosity would take over her, just to see what he would do.
Or wait, he would like that, too.
No way. She said, mentally chuckling.
Turning on the shower, she entered the bath tub. The water was cold. In fact, it was freezing. She grabbed her knees, burying her face. Enough. He broke in, only to get angry on himself for doing this to her. Whatever he did to her, that made her do this to herself.
He grabbed a nearby towel, stopped the shower, and put the towel on her. The fox picked her up bridal-style and took her in the other room, (the third from the right). Meanwhile, she didn't look at him. Not once.
He placed her in the corner, sitting down next to her, his hand on his knee, as the other one supported him. He looked at her.
She was shivering.
Her gaze turned away, staring blankly at the wall.
She was all wet.
" Because I wanted to. Because I want to," she replied roughly, taking the towel off, but stopped. Her bare shoulders visible, her hands as well. She wasn't trembling anymore.
He noticed the scars. The scars on her heart. He added.
" Did they do this to you? "
" No, " the pain visible in her soft voice.
She hurt herself ... ? Kurama thought.
He was now furious on himself. How did he manage to influence her so much?
She wanted to do so many things at that time. Raine was being lustful.
I want to .. yes, I want. To look at you. Your legendary eyes. Those tender eyes. Your face. The features I couldn't forget. Lean on his chest. Right there and then. Hug him, and let go of every other thing.
But she didn't. If you would have asked her why she was acting that way, rebelity would have taken over her and a 'whatever' or 'Don't know, don't care' would have been the response.
She wasn't the only one that wanted to show her affections.
All this was hurting him.
Perhaps more than her?
Especially now, that he realized how he felt about her.
" Let me heal you." He asked, his voice low. Carelessly, she threw the towel off.
Her red clothing was wet too, of course. Her slim form was clearly visible to his eyes. Her curves nicely caught his eyes. The clothing was almost glued to her skin. (You're getting what description I'm making?)
Kurama couldn't help but stare at her. He didn't realize that. Five full seconds and then he realized - she blushed, her gaze turning away from him.
No matter what happened, she would still feel shy around him and blush. He loved it.
Then, he leaned closer, almost on top of her. She was taken aback by his actions. What was he doing?
His left hand caressed her neck, as her blush deepened. His right one rested on her shoulder. He kissed her collarbone - were the wound was. He sucked on her wound - what he would usually do when healing. That was what he was doing, healing her, just like he said. But his actions seemed different, for a few moments.
Though painful, she couldn't help but feel a bit of pleasure.
When he finished, his left hand trailed down, grabbing her hand where the other wound was. He stood up, repeating his actions.
" There." he said, cleaning up the wound from her hand.
Suddenly, different plants popped out of nowhere - or at least she thought - doing something to her wounds.
They were like needles. Quite painful.
She gasped. The pain constantly reminded her to scream, but she ignored the thought. The plants fell to the ground, when she looked at her wounds, they seemed closed.
" Sorry it hurt ... " Kurama apologizes. Confusion was in her eyes, as she sat up, preparing to leave, but he grabbed her arm.
" Don't do that! " What was she talking about? Let's see. The plants? 'Healing' her that way? Or, was that an unconscious tease ? " What's with the plants ! " she demanded. He let go of her.
" I .. forgot to tell you. " He sighed heavily. Here comes another pile of truth. " I also lived in Makai, you know. I'm a fox. Older than I seem - more than 1000 years. But .. I got badly injured, so I fled to the Living World, my spirit combining with that of the unborn baby of Shiori Minamino. Thus I became Shuichi Minamino. As you saw, I also have the power to control plants. " he said, looking at his hands.
Before he knew it, she left the room, confusing him even more.
Dammit, this girl had something with social withdrawal, or at least, running away. Kurama followed her outside; when she slowed her pace, he just walked with her. She was being silent.
" I should have told you sooner. I'm sorry. " When he saw she acted like she didn't care, he snapped. Why are you acting this way? he thought, upset.
" It's alright. I'm not angry. "
He frowned. Didn't she look angry before?" Where are we going? " he said, looking around.
" Forest. "
He raised an eyebrow.
After a walk without words, they reached a forest. It seemed really dense, but he trusted her to know the surroundings. After all, this was her home.
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