Spirited Away: The Return Home

Chapter | 25

It was actually pretty pathetic how much I cried at that moment, but at the same time I couldn’t really care less. Haku was back and I think he planned on sticking around a little bit.
We stood with our arms wrapped around each other, almost forgetting the raging mad woman. Almost. Haku pulled me behind him as Shadōri’s couch flew into the ceiling and came hurtling straight at us. We ducked easily enough, but I could still feel pieces of wood touch my hair. Not cool.“Chihiro, get Yoru, and get out,” Haku said to me, but I didn’t move. “No way, I’m not leaving you again,” I said and Haku looked at me as if I were the stupid one. “I just got you back Haku, there’s no way I’m letting you out of my sight.”I could see he wanted to fight me over it, but there wasn’t really time for a petty couple’s argument. Instead he shook his head and turned back to Shadōri, who had gotten up and was trying make herself presentable, not that I really knew why it mattered.“Kohaku, how nice of you to join us,” Shadōri said, “I must admit, I can’t exactly figure out how it is that you are here.” Come to think of it, neither could I. With the amount of joy I was feeling just from him being alive, it didn’t even matter to me, but I did want to know.“I don’t think it would interest you all that much, so let’s just get to the point,” Haku simply said, rolling his shoulders back and squaring his feet. Something about his stance stirred something in my memories, like I had seen it before. It was the same as the one Yoru taught me, well the person who was with me that day. Now it was pretty obvious who had been with me.In my absent mindedness, Haku and Shadōri had moved closer to each other, waiting for the other to make the first move. I, on the other hand, backed up until I was standing next to Yoru. Shadōri finally decided to attack and so it began. Quickly I kneeled down and started shaking Yoru, hoping that I wasn’t causing any further damage to a possible concussion. After a few gentle nudges Yoru started to respond, mostly moaning and rocking. Finally he opened his eyes and tried to sit up. “Chihiro?” he asked as I helped him up, not wanting him to stand just yet. “Hey, yeah, it’s me,” I said gently, letting go of him.He looked fine, nothing wrong that I could see. He scanned the room, settling on the fight between Haku and Shadōri. “Is that…” he started to say. “Yeah, it’s Haku. Don’t ask, I’m not sure either,” I said before helping him up. He wobbled a little, but quickly managed to regain his balance.“We’ve got to help somehow,” I said, once again scanning the room for something, anything that could help us. It was frustrating. It’s not like I thought Haku would lose the fight, I just wanted to help him. I didn’t want to leave him like the last time, and I didn’t plan on doing so either. My train of thought was suddenly interrupted by a loud crash. I turned to find Haku getting up from the ground with Shadōri quickly approaching. My whole body seemed to come alive as I sprinted across the room, more out of instinct than necessity.

There was no freaking way that I was letting him slip from my grasp again.

Luckily, it seemed I wasn’t needed after all. Haku shot up just as Shadōri reached him and was able to block her kick. I stopped dead in my tracks, careful not to get too close to them. Things were getting pretty heated, with Haku and Shadōri on equal footing. All that did was make me more anxious. Then I remember, almost punching myself for actually forgetting. Turning around, I ran back to where Yoru had fallen, scanning the ground. I found the knife not far away. I didn’t really have a plan after finding the knife, but it seemed like a definite first step. I tucked it into the back of my jeans, praying I wouldn’t stab myself in the process. Shadōri and Haku had moved closer to our side of the room, limiting my time to come up with a last second, mind blowing plan. It was probably the only chance I would catch Shadōri completely off guard, well her guard wouldn’t be up to me. All I had to do was get my timing just right.Before they got to close, I ran over to the couch. It had broken into pieces of wood, material, and filling, which led me to step two of my plan. I examined the pile and grabbed a piece of wood that resembled a steak.Slowly I crept forward, making sure I was always in her blind spot. Luckily she was fighting with her back turned to me. Okay, I know that some people would classify my plan as ‘cheap,’ or ‘underhanded,’ but could you blame me? The woman was far worse than I could ever be. So no, I didn’t feel bad about what I planned to do. My planned probably would have worked if I had gotten more time. The doors to the room burst open and about twenty men and woman rushed in.Shadōri sensed my lunge seconds before my attack would have hit her. Instead her foot made contact with my stomach, making me air born for a few seconds. As I hit the ground, I was vaguely aware I wasn’t holding on to the stake anymore. “Chihiro!” I head Haku yell out, but my vision and hearing was a little bit blurry.Haku’s cry was soon followed by a grunt and a thump. Haku must have let his guard down, leaving him wide open for an attack.With the last of my strength I pushed myself onto my arms, trying to see what happened. I was right, Shadōri was standing over Haku, who in turn was clutching his side. Shadōri regarded Haku before turning back to me. Where was Yoru? A bunch of guards appeared to have Yoru pinned to the ground. A few of them also went to restrain Haku.I was pretty much on my own. The closer Shadōri got, the further I pushed myself back, stopping when my back hit the wall. “Now, where were we?” Shadōri said, squatting down in front of me. When I didn’t answer she grabbed my hair and pulled my face up.“I don’t know. You were saying something about your dead boyfriend,” I said, knowing it wasn’t the right thing to say. Shadōri seemed to think so too, this became evident when she wrapped her hand around my throat and lifted me clear off the ground.“You really do annoy me, do you know that? I didn’t think it was possible for one person to cause me so much trouble,” Shadōri said, cocking her head to the side. “Why could you not just stay home, you probably would have died of old age then, not now. Guess that is what you get for being a human who does not think things through.”“Yeah?” I managed to choke out, “That’s nice to know, but you know what?” I asked, slowly moving my one hand behind my back. “You talk too much,” I said before I drove the knife straight through her heart. There was a moment of silence before her grip loosened. I fell to the ground, taking deep breaths. Shadōri stood for a few seconds more before dropping to the ground, her one hand coming up to rip the knife from her chest. It clattered to the ground next to her. “Tell me, human, why are you so worried about how I run this world?” Shadōri asked, not even looking at me.“The human world has seen a few leaders like you, none of those periods in history turned out very good. I guess I just don’t want this world to end up the same,” I said, realizing that what I was saying was actually true. The faintest of smiles appeared on her face, “You humans truly are funny,” Shadōri said with her last breath. I sat up as fast as my body would allow and caught her as she fell forward.

We sat like that for a moment longer, until I felt her heart stop beating.

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