Rurouni Kenshin Fan Fiction ❯ Lunch Date with a Hitokiri ❯ One-Shot

[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]
Lunch Date with a Hitokiri (rough draft)
A Rurouni Kenshin fanfic by Raberba girl

Summary:  Kenshin finds some unexpected mercy.

o.o.o

The young woman could have killed him, but she didn't.

Kenshin had tumbled into the conference room and slammed the door shut, then stood there trying to still his breathing as he listened to his pursuers running and yelling through the hallways outside.  He closed his eyes for a moment and exhaled in relief.  Then he opened his eyes again and turned around to get his bearings - and froze in horror when he saw her sitting there, looking at him gravely, her hands gone still over the papers spread before her on the table.

Kenshin swallowed.  "I...ah...."

"Himura Battousai-san, is it?" she said quietly, as if they had merely just been introduced at a business meeting.

Kenshin winced at the assassin's name, but it wasn't like he could give her his real one.  "This one is easily recognized, that he is," he said ruefully.  He briefly touched his hair, which had come tumbling down from the hat he had used earlier to conceal it, and thought of the bandage that had been earlier torn away from his cheek, revealing the lurid scars beneath.

"It seems so."

They looked at each other for a minute.

"So," Kenshin said awkwardly, "we seem to be...at an impasse, that we are."

"Why would you say that?" she said calmly, without a trace of fear in her dark eyes.  If anything, she looked a little bored.  "Can't you simply silence me and go your way in safety?"

Kenshin clenched his teeth together.  "Why didn't you scream?" he whispered.  "When you saw this one, and realized who he was?  Even now, a word from you will bring them quickly."

"Why didn't you kill me?" she countered.  "When you saw me, and realized I could betray you?  Even now, you hesitate as if the Hitokiri Battousai has qualms against spilling blood."

He glared, even as he admired her quick mind, her ironic echo of his own words.  "Just because this one is an assassin does not mean he enjoys killing."

The young woman nodded.  "And there, I believe, lies the answer to your own question as well as mine."  As if she had all the time in the world, she gathered up her papers, tucked them into various colored folders, and slipped them into her briefcase.  Then she rose and approached, stopping a decent distance away to bow politely in greeting.  "I am Tomoe.  It's a pleasure to meet you."

"L-Likewise," Kenshin stammered automatically.  "To...Tomoe-dono...."  It felt wrong to address her by her given name, but she had offered no other.

"Hm...."  She came straight up to him, studied him for a while, then said, "This will not do."

"Pardon?"

A few minutes later, they came walking out of the conference room together:  she carrying his coat as if it was hers; he with makeup covering the scars, and his distinctive hair concealed under the hood of her own coat.  He was amazed at how easy it was to simply go down the stairs and stroll out onto the sidewalk.

He turned to her, nearly speechless with gratitude.  "Tomoe-dono...how can this one - ever repay you?"

"I suppose you could pay for my lunch."

"Pardon?"

"That restaurant down the street usually has nice specials."

"Oh...."  He gave a hesitant smile, and finally held out his arm.  "Well, then, my lady?"

She rested her arm in his, and, to his astonishment, offered a small smile of her own.

That lunch date, as well as the smile, turned out to be the first of many.

o.o.o

Author's Notes:  This is a SUPER-OLD fic, most of which I wrote several years ago.  It was supposed to be significantly longer, but the partial draft got abandoned when I tried to give up writing RuroKen fanfiction.  Now that my muse apparently refuses to completely leave the RuroKen fandom, I finally decided to just tack a quick ending onto what I'd written and post the story as an Unlost installment.