Rurouni Kenshin Fan Fiction ❯ Unlost ❯ Sunrise ( Chapter 3 )

[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]
Unlost, a fanfic series by Raberba girl
Sunrise (prompt 3, table one)

Summary:  Enishi is briefly reunited with his sister.

A/N:  Contains heavy references to Kingdom Hearts II and/or Kingdom Hearts: 358/2 Days.

o.o.o

Enishi did not notice time passing in the Fallen Village.  Sometimes it was bright, sometimes it was dark; sometimes, he heard an old man's voice speaking to him, soothing even though he perceived none of the words.

There had been darkness, and he'd been drifting on the edge of sleep, but now....

He sat on a high ledge, overlooking a quiet town, with no sound other than the wind and the cries of passing birds and the call of distant trains.  The sun was blazing near the horizon, but not too hot, its rays seeming to bathe wounds that couldn't be seen.

For the first time, it occurred to Enishi to wonder about something.  Not very much, but still.  This did not seem to fit.  "Where...?"

There were soft footsteps behind him.  He did not at first think to have any interest in whose they were, and by the time his shoulders suddenly twitched with intuition, she was already sitting down beside him.

"Hello, Enishi."

"Neesan," he whispered, leaning to rest his head against her shoulder.

Her fingers reached up to trail gently through his hair.  "I missed you."

"I missed you, too," he managed to whisper, his throat tight.  "I missed you so much."

"...Even when you looked at me and thought you saw a smile on my face, I missed you," she said meaningfully.

He flinched and turned his face closer, hiding from her eyes as shame engulfed him.  "I...."

They were quiet for a long time.

"Did you really love him?" Enishi finally whispered.

"You read the truth."

"How could you?!" he burst out, suddenly straightening so he could desperately search her face.  "How?"

"He made me happy."

He stared.  "...How?"  How was it possible?

"Enishi," she said softly, "my husband did not destroy my happiness out of malice or cruelty, and he gave me another to replace what was lost.  Until then, I felt as if my soul was dying within me.  But with that forgiveness...sharing my pain with him, setting him free in my heart....  There is no joy in a life of revenge, Enishi."  Her dark eyes held his.  "And I think you know that very well."

He had been on the verge of it without noticing, but now he wept for real, feeling how true it was in the deep ache of his tired body.  There really had been no joy or peace or happiness all these years, it was all pinned on that point in the future when he could finally bring justice to the Battousai, finally thrust his own pain on his sister's killer and be rid of it.

Yet...that point had come and gone, or at least something as close to it as he would ever accomplish, and still...no peace, no rest anywhere, the wounds in his soul seeming to bleed afresh...except here, in the sun's warmth and his lost sister's arms.  "I want to stay with you," he whispered.

There was a long silence.  She finally said, "This place exists in perpetual twilight, and you are only here because you have found a path between wakefulness and sleep.  Eventually, you will be drawn back the way you came - it is not possible for you to stay."

"If I kill myself," he suggested in all seriousness, "can I stay with you?"

"Dear one," she said, very softly, "do you believe that walking such a path would bring you to me?"

"Maybe," he said stubbornly, even as uncertainty whispered in his heart.  She gazed at him for such a long time with reproach in her eyes that he finally sighed.  "I'll keep living.  In this hell the world became once you left it."

He had thought that might please her, but after a long silence, she finally said, "You really are not a man."

"What?!"

"A mere shell, who feeds on my memory and does not know what it means to truly live."

"You!  I want you!  Ever since I lost you, all I've wanted is to have you back!"

"As I said," she said tonelessly, no longer touching him or looking at him, "a shell only.  Your heart and your soul might as well be dead."

He spoke through gritted teeth.  "That was the whole purpose of Jinchuu."

"Which is why it was doomed from the start."

"What...what should I have done, then?"

She sighed.  "My love, can you really think of no better way to honor my memory than to cause suffering and destruction to yourself and everyone around you?"

"...."

"Just," she prompted, "as one example:  it would please me very much to see you give a flower to a little girl."

"...You want me to give flowers to girls?"

"Or help a farmer finish his harvest in time.  Or protect a maiden's virtue from the ruffians our region seems to have such an abundance of.  Or feed a stray dog."  She rested her palm affectionately against his forehead, and he closed his eyes at her touch.  "Use your imagination."

"...I can't do that kind of stuff."

"Why not?"

"I don't know how."

"Enishi.  You've never tried."

"...I don't want to do any of that stuff."

"...I want you to."

He ground his teeth together.  "Okay.  I'll try."

He was startled when she kissed his cheek.  "Thank you, my love."  Then she held out to him what looked like a block of blue ice on a stick.

"What's that?"

"Something the children here like to eat.  I think you'll like it, too."  She raised a second one to her mouth and gave it a delicate lick.

Enishi stared at his own ice, then cautiously touched his tongue to it.  "Ohhhh...."  He bit into it more enthusiastically, his mouth filling with the sweet taste of sea-salt.  "This is good!"

"Yes."

"I like it."

"I knew you would."

It felt incredibly strange, taking such pleasure from something so innocent and simple.  Enishi actually couldn't remember the last time he'd been able to enjoy something like this.  "Hey, Neesan?"

"Hm?"

"Even if I can't stay with you...can I come back sometimes and sit with you like this again?  Eating this sea-salt stuff and watching the sunrise together...."

She glanced at him in mild surprise.  "Sunrise?"

"Yeah."  It was kind of a weird one, though.  The sun hadn't moved in all this time, just kept resting comfortably on the horizon.

"I suppose it does look like a sunrise, doesn't it," Tomoe said thoughtfully, "depending on your perspective."

Once more, Enishi saw his sister smile.

o.o.o

Author's Notes:  I told you Kingdom Hearts would keep showing up in this series. XD

KH stuff you should know for this story to make more sense:  Twilight Town is a world that exists on the margin between the Realm of Light (normal Disney worlds where people are generally nice) and the Realm of Darkness (a black wasteland overrun by the darkness from people's hearts).  It is a sleepy town lit by a perpetual sunset, where people seem to use trains as their main mode of transportation.  The train station includes a clock tower, at the top of which several important characters often sit to enjoy sea-salt ice cream and bond together as friends.

With these challenge series, I often go with the first image I get when I look at the prompt.  In this case, Tomoe and Enishi watching a sunrise, which for some reason made me think of Roxas & Axel's farewell scene in Kingdom Hearts II Final Mix, and thus was this drabble born....

Lolol, whenever I get a chance, I will so make fanart of Enishi giving a flower to a dubious-looking Xion, or feeding Chi behind Sai's back when Saïx is busy with mission prep work in Twilight Town. XD

Complete:  3/100