Chapter 10- Pasts and Mixers
Just a bit further... yes. It won't be for much longer.
Until my time is at its end... by then I'll become nothing more than a corpse. Maybe it's better this way... this way I won't feel anymore pain.
There won't be anything left but darkness... it's more than what I deserve.
A person was walking through the dark dreary planes wearing a black yukata containing red flames at the end of his sleeves and at the bottom of the yukata; his own bare feet carried him forward in a slow pace. Meanwhile his tail moved from side to side, also in a slow manner. His arms hung limply by his sides almost as if he had lost the will to live. Eyes empty and drained of emotions as they kept looking ahead. Black marks were visible on his face but he cared not. Not after what he went through. To think that it happened, and he had been powerless to stop it.
The air now became harder to breathe as a sob lodged itself in his throat. He just wanted it all to end, to never feel anything anymore. To escape the harsh reality that he would always be alone.
The question in his mind was why? Why did his own brother do what he did back then? Things could have been different, better maybe but now the future was unclear and had become lost to him. He was done now, done with everything... his own wish had been denied and for what? What was the reason for it? Was it his comeuppance for what he did to the humans innocent or not?
"Are you lost?" a male's voice caught his attention. A blond haired male wearing a pair of glasses looked at him, eyes that were serene, they almost made the person scowl in anger. Who was he to not fear him? Why does he not leave him be? Especially when this person craved death as it looms closer with each passing day.
The male wore a black yukata with green butterflies, in his left hand was a fan made out of leaves.
"Why do you wander out all alone?" the voice was soft and kind. It almost broke the person's heart to hear such a kind voice, even in this world there happened to be someone who did not leave him with a feeling of self loathing.
"What happened to you? You are covered in blood... is it yours?" images ran through the person's mind once more, it only filled him with more grief and pain, however he had no more tears to shed.
"It is not my blood..." the person replied sounding tired. The blond haired male looked at him with sad eyes. The person hated those eyes for they almost seemed to pity him.
"I wish to die" was the person's broken reply before he went silent. The man watched him, signalling that he was listening.
"You should come and rest at my shrine before you leave" The blond haired man stood up silently and guided the person to a shrine. The person didn't speak; he was too exhausted to even think straight or even utter a single sound.
"Will you let me see what's killing you?" the man asked gently. Immediately the top half of the yukata was by the person's waist. The man felt dread as he saw black lines on the person's body, including the arms.
"I was hoping that they weren't what I thought they were" the person said nothing but looked down. "These marks are made by a contract. Tell me did you make a deal with a fallen God?" the man asked softly. The person's face continued to hang low, allowing his long red hair to cover his face. He dared not deny what had happened, nor did he admit when the marks were there for this man to see.
"Their enchantments can never be undone once a spell has been cast. Tell me what kind of contract did you seal with this fallen one?" the man asked while watching the person lay weakly on the floor, his face away in order to prevent this man, no this God from seeing his weakened form.
"I... I made a vow... I made a promise to be with this human woman" the person spoke softly. "No matter what, I promised to stay by her side... but she died and it was all my fault. I can't even get her out of my mind" the person's voice started to crack as tears ran down his face. The man watched him with sorrowful eyes.
"Why did it have to be this way? I wanted to be human for her... but she's gone" the person clutched the front of his kimono tightly. "She was so young... I can't even understand it. What did I do to make it happen? It's not fair... it's not fair" the person ignored the touch on his shoulder and began to shudder from the grief that wracked throughout his body.
"To think that a yōkai could ever love and it was with a child of man... it saddens me to see this happen to you. It really does and I truly am sorry for your loss" the person moved his face up so he could look at the ceiling.
"I loved her with all my heart and she was taken from me... why Umi? why did she have to go?" the man watched as he listened to the person's woes.
"I would give anything to have her live again, so I could spend the rest my life with her" images of blood surrounded a frail body as the hand reached out for something; the area was unknown to him. "But alas it's not possible... I can never be where Umi is" his voice was soft and his eyes were full of despair.
"So you were wondering round until the end came?" the man asked softly. His hand remained on the person's shoulder.
"You are a God aren't you? Can you... can you stay with me until I die? Even if I can't go to where she is?" the person pleaded weakly.
"Of course but there is no need for you to die. I can give you a reason to live; all you have to be is patient. When you wake up, the pain will be gone and there will be nothing to cause you anymore suffering. When the moon and sun passes each day, you will forget... that is the power of oblivion. Do rest Silver... I hate to see you like this after all this time, I have never stopped watching over you" the man said softly. The person whimpered from the pain before he lost consciousness.
Silver opened his eyes to see a clear blue sky. Where was he? And why was the area so bright? A person with blond hair was sitting in front of him, wearing a white yukata and continued to look up at the sky. This took Silver by surprise as he tried to sit up.
"Mikage?" Silver's voice was that of a whisper but it caught the person's attention just as he was about to reach out and grab their shoulder.
"Oh? You're awake Silver" Mizuki's voice snapped Silver out of his daze. Just great, why was this vermin here when he should be working?
"It's a nice day isn't it? You looked so adorable sleeping so I thought I'd come and sit by you" Mizuki explained while holding a cup of sake in his hand, a white bottle sat beside him as he sipped. Silver saw red as he looked at the snake.
"GET TO WORK YOU STUPID SNAKE!" Silver roared as he kicked Mizuki causing him to fly out the shrine.
"But you are the one that was sleeping!" Mizuki cried as he flew in snake form.
Silver immediately sorted out his uniform before starting on chores. First thing on his list was doing the laundry, taking the white sheets he began to dry them with the utmost care.
Mizuki on the other hand listened to Oishi who spoke about how Silver first began his job as a familiar. Luca also listened while standing beside the snake familiar.
"To think he was once wild" Luca commented catching the pair's attention who then looked at Silver as he walked past. Folded up washing had been stored in the wooden basket attached to leather handles.
"It's true, he has come a long way since then" Oishi replied sounding happy. Mizuki however was left curious and slightly envious as he watched the fox work diligently.
"What are you doing snake?" Silver's voice appeared behind the startled Mizuki who looked up. Luca lifted his hand up and smiled at him, Silver just made a noise signalling that he was acknowledging the boy before glaring at the snake.
"Hi Silver working hard?" Mizuki asked with a peppy smile. Silver's eyes narrowed at the question.
"I told you to get to bloody work moron!" Immediately Silver kicked Mizuki in the face before sending him flying again. "Now get your ass off the floor and do it!" Silver barked as he looked at where a screaming Mizuki was now.
"Busy morning?" Luca asked as he watched Silver frown.
"Where is Lily by the way?" Silver asked.
"I think she's sleeping" Oishi replied. Luca's mind went off for a bit.
"She did seem exhausted ten minutes ago" Luca commented as Silver went off in a huff.
"I swear she has no discipline!" Silver snapped angrily.
As soon as Silver arrived at her room he immediately slammed it open without knocking, this startled his master a lot who was just about to doze off.
"How long are you going to sleep in Lily? You have chores you useless girl!" Silver's voice could be heard from the bedroom.
"Silver for goodness sake goes away! I want to sleep already" Lily's reply is mixed between whining and yelling, her voice signalled that she sounded very agitated as she placed her head on the pillow.
"You have had enough sleep as it is now get up!" Silver snapped as he clenched his hands tightly at either side of his waist. Lily's eyes immediately shot back open showing him a pair of red eyes as she shot a look at him from the futon. Silver nearly jumped out of his skin from seeing such a look.
"I HAVE BEEN DOING AN ALL NIGHTER! WHEN DID I EVEN GET TIME TO SLEEP YOU IDIOT? NOW LEAVE ME ALONE SO- OH COME ON! I JUST WENT TO BED TEN MINUTES AGO! GET OUT!" Silver rushed out the room and immediately hid behind the door that he had just closed. His hair dishevelled from running and his eyes wide from terror. Silver had felt like his own heart was beating out of his chest while looking at Luca, the blond haired boy looked as if his face went more pale than usual.
"I was about to say that she had been doing homework and prayer reading last night. She just went to the kitchen to get a drink before going to bed ten minutes ago" Luca smiled weakly at the fuming fox who wanted to strangle the boy's neck.
"Now you tell me?! I just got screamed at by a cranky girl!" Silver hollered.
"Luca! Give me a hot water bottle please" Lily called from her room, this stopped Silver and got them looking at her direction.
"Coming" Luca called back while Silver gave him a 'what the hell?' look.
"I am her familiar! I'll do it" Silver snapped now moving towards the kitchen.
"If you step one foot into the room I'll make it so you'll never walk again" Lily's angry tone froze him to the spot.
"F-Fine! I'll do the rest of the chores" Silver replied now walking away. The spirit children looked at one another in surprise. Hearing that Lily was doing work at a Saturday night was not something they had even seen coming.
"She's been doing that for a few weeks" Luca explained before walking off to get the hot water bottle ready. He spotted Silver grumbling in the kitchen before passing a blue fake furred hot water bottle to a surprised Luca.
"Here" Silver said stiffly. Luca looked at the direction to where Lily was before shaking his head.
"Give it to Lily, she's asleep now" Luca smiled and walked off leaving Silver with the water bottle. Seeing as he had no choice, the kitsune walked silently towards Lily's room. True to Luca's words, Lily was indeed asleep in her futon. She looked completely dead to the world since she didn't hear him enter. Silver moved towards the bottom end of the futon, placing the item where her feet were before putting the blanket down. Seeing Lily sleep left him smiling slightly at her peaceful form. Silver then moved towards the other end of the futon where her head was and sat down. Silently he lifted some of her hair strands and felt the silky hair fall between his fingers.
"She's so peaceful when she sleeps, this is the second time I've seen her asleep" Silver muses as he watches her sleep. His mind went back to when he had been turned into a child by the mallet, the fox's eyes softened at how vulnerable she looked as she slept.
Lily blanches at Kei who starts talking about going to a mixer.
"Kei I don't think it's wise, I don't like karaoke" Lily sounded nervous when she and Ami sat in the refectory area.
"Listen Lily! I want a boyfriend by the end of next week and that's final" Kei's expression startled the girls as they looked at her.
"Yes madam" Lily said weakly.
"I'll come" Ami squeaked knowing that she had little choice in the matter as well. Shortly after lunch ended Lily had walked silently towards her classroom. Almost dreading the part that she had to explain to Silver that she couldn't head home. Lily could almost hear the funeral march as she continued to walk upstairs. It would have been funny if it wasn't for the fact that she hated mingling with other males.
By the time class ended for the day, Lily immediately began packing her stuff.
"Silver can you take this bag home please" Lily asked as she stood up from her desk.
"Where are you going?" Silver asked bluntly as he looked at her with his bag on his shoulder.
"I heading out with Kei and Ami so I'll be late tonight" Lily replied, Silver remained emotionless as he looked at her.
"Is this to do with this mixer Kei human was talking about?" Silver mused as he followed her down the stairs.
"Are you heading out to this mixer?" Silver's question left Lily feeling like air had been forced out of her lungs.
"Mixer? Who told you about that?" Lily asked sharply, realisation hit the girl like a ton of bricks "Did you eavesdrop on the conversation?" Silver didn't even understand why she was being like this. A simple yes or no would have been enough in his opinion.
"Why are you acting like this?" Silver asked now frowning.
"I don't like it when people listen in other people's conversations" Lily snapped before walking off while muttering about how rude he was being. Silver blinked as she walked off in a huff.
"Isn't it hypocritical since you can hear what we are all thinking?" he pondered before walking. Then again it's not like she can control it all the time so finding a way to turn it off was difficult according to Luca, how Silver had found out about that part was when Luca visited him as he sat on the porch. Silver was about to drink sake until he spotted the young boy, despite having the urge to drink, Silver had surprisingly put his bottle away and then after doing that, they both began to talk about things. It felt nice for them to talk about it and Silver ended up talking about some of his personal problems and in turn Luca did the same thing. Their night ended on an interesting note especially for Silver. Who in turn had to take a sleeping boy back to his room before going back to his.
Lily wasn't sure about the mixer but it turned out to be interesting in her opinion, the boys seemed nice except this one ginger haired guy who was a bit creepy. He did seem like a two timer and that gave her enough reason to keep away.
"This isn't so bad" Lily commented to Kei, Ami even agreed with Lily as she took a sip of her drink.
"That's good to hear" said a brown haired male. The other males agreed before they all chatted about how their day was and what they did.
"GHAAA! There's a snake in my bag!" Ami scream caught their attention. Lily's eyes turned to see a white snake with green eyes that was on the floor, it blinked as soon as it's spotted her, Lily at that moment had left like her stomach had just plummeted from the shock, especially when it came to how 'discrete' the snake was.
"What the hell?" Lily yelled as she grabbed the snake's neck and rushed out the room to their confusion.
Lily made her way to the girl's bathroom and looked down at the snake after she released him.
"Mizuki! What are you doing here?!" Lily cried as she knelt down in front of the snake.
"Well you know a lot about this world, and I don't even know about this mixer thing so I wanted to see what it was" Mizuki said without opening his mouth. Lily went rigid.
"Did you come here alone?" to her horror Mizuki shook his head. "Don't tell me..." a hand went past her and grabbed Mizuki's neck.
"Oh sorry about that, it seems Mizuki has left my sight when I wasn't looking" Silver's suave voice made Lily look back shakily. There before her was Silver who looked at back at the startled girl with unreadable eyes.
What are you doing here?" Lily asked sharply now standing up in order to look at him.
"I was a little worried about where you were, but it seems like the worry wasn't needed" Silver immediately walked away from Lily in order to mask the hurt in his voice and eyes, meanwhile Mizuki's head turned to face her as the fox left the bathroom.
The girl sighed deeply; she didn't even want to know what was going on with him anymore. Even now she didn't even know what to make of this situation. She didn't even know if she liked him and if that was true... then why did she have this sharp pain in her chest. Lily was at a loss of what to do at that moment, she then turned to look at the mirror and felt a twinge. Something about it left Lily with the urge to run or smash it to pieces. Over the years mirrors never did make her feel safe when she looked at them. It had this weird way of revealing things that people either weren't ready for or did not want to even see. It almost reminded Lily of her ability to read minds. There was no escape when it came to that.
"Are you alright?" the ginger haired boy's voice caught her attention, why was he in the bathroom? She then noticed that the area around her was actually the hallway. When did she even move?
"Sorry, I was just thinking about something" Lily said now sitting on a small brick wall; flowers were growing behind her leaving a slightly peaceful effect.
"Do you want to talk about it?" the boy asked. Even when she thought about it, it did seem silly to talk about how mirrors bothered her, very silly indeed.
"No, it's just a thought" Lily replied as she looked up at the sky, the stars left her feeling giddy given that they were sitting near the lamp.
"Is it about a guy?" Lily blinked at the question. A guy? She wasn't sure about that either.
"I... no it's just I don't know what to think when it comes to anything. There's this guy I admit that but I don't know what to feel with him" Lily replied, why was she even speaking to a stranger about this?
"I see, you don't know this but a while ago I had my heartbroken by a girl. She wasn't even sure about where the relationship was going and left" Lily frowned at his sombre eyes.
"Just like that? That's horrible" Lily exclaimed in a low tone.
"It was but I'm over it now" the male said with a smile. Lily admired at how he put on a brave face, but still his aura said not to trust him.
"I need to head off now, thank you for letting me borrow your jacket" Lily smiled before standing up. However his hand stopped her from moving away, she looked down to see him looking back at her.
"Won't you stay? It's a nice night and perfect when it comes to looking at the stars" the boy asked now moving his hand slightly.
"I can't, my friends are worried about me" Lily said now feeling a little uncomfortable from how he was touching her hand.
"That's a shame. I do like holding your hand, it's very soft" Lily felt alarm bells going off as she heard him speak.
"In fact, you were the only girl who caught my eye the whole time" the male suddenly leaned closer after standing up. However before he could do anything he was immediately sent to the floor by a foot. Lily's eyes widened from seeing the sandaled foot, that was no accident!
"Sorry about that, it seems Mizuki is being a nuisance again" Silver said with a sly smile as he squeezed Mizuki, who at that moment continued to make noises that might have hinted that he was being strangled in his snake form. Lily almost grimaced at what she was seeing until she heard the ginger haired male run off in fear.
"Was that necessary?" Lily asked sounding tired as she looked at them. She frowned at Silver until he released his hold over Mizuki.
"This is why you shouldn't be out in places like this. Never let your guard down. As for tonight I am taking you home" Silver said crossly as he grabbed her wrist. "I have parked the Night Fog Carriage since the buses have stopped working during this hour" Silver was determined to take Lily away. He just wanted to keep her way mixers like that at all costs, after all who knows what they would do if she was alone.
"I have to say good bye to everyone" Lily said as he continued to hold her hand so she couldn't escape.
"I'm sure they'll understand" Silver said stiffly. "I've already told them that you are leaving early" that didn't sit well with the girl.
"But I can't say anything to them, Silver! Don't... don't tell me you are jealous?" Silver immediately stopped from hearing her words. He felt his own heart as it began to beat rapidly from hearing her question, jealous him? Of course not! He just didn't want any male near his master. Silver especially didn't want ones who could potentially be a danger to her. Who would say that is jealousy? Images of her being in a relationship with a human male almost made him growl, his own teeth also bared at the thought of the human touching her to the point that Silver wanted to claw at the male's eyes so the male would leave her alone for good. No one touches his master not even him. She was his property and that was that- wait what? Property? The thought almost made him laugh and yet left par of him shuddering at the thought; no he should never have any indecent thoughts of her. Silver at that moment had hoped that she wasn't reading his mind. Otherwise she would end up punishing him badly, but that's a good thing right?
"I'm right aren't I? Wait don't say anything" Lily said while smiling at him softly. His back was still facing her.
"It's true... when you went out to this mixer, I didn't feel like myself. It was odd, uncomfortable even and I... I didn't like it" Lily moved closer and turned him around so she could see his conflicted face. It tugged at her heart strings just seeing him in emotional pain. "Part of me just wanted to go in there and drag you out but, the other part of me just wanted to see if you were okay" Silver averted his eyes in order to avoid her gaze.
"I don't know what to think when I am around you, it's like there's a battle inside my chest and it hurts" Silver felt mixed emotions as those words entered his mind. Lily moved her hand up in order to stroke his cheek softly after hearing his thoughts.
"You're not the only one who is conflicted, I just hope these feelings will find a way to sort themselves out soon"
"I hope so too" Silver murmured softly. His eyes remained transfixed on to hers leaving them to ignore the world around them. Slowly the space between them grew smaller and smaller until they were just a small breath away. However just before they could close the distance.
"Mizuki!" Lily screamed in shock as the snake changed back to his human appearance. Lily clutched her chest in shock as she began to pant like mad. She wasn't even aware of his presence and that was not a joke.
"How long have you been standing there you pathetic reptile?" Silver yelled at the confused snake.
"What are you talking about? I've been standing here the whole time" Mizuki whined at the angry fox who was lashing out at him for no reason.
Elsewhere - unknown time
A blond haired man was sitting on a rock, fan made out of leaves rested in his hand as he continued to watch the area as the time went by. The man contemplated about his newly acquired familiar and tried to think about what he could do to remove the curse. So far the thing that would only undo his spell- which was the only thing that was keeping his familiar alive at the present time. How to break his spell was if he had fallen in love with someone, the chances however were unlikely but it made the man chuckle at how stubborn his familiar was regardless.
"Mikage" a woman's voice had suddenly caught his attention, looking up so he could smile at the person. He paused.
"It's you, I didn't realise know you were coming here today" Mikage greeted with a kind smile. However the moment he noticed her distressed look had made his smile vanish.
"Is there something wrong?" the man asked as he stood up.
"I... Mikage, I...I don't know what to do anymore. It just... Mikage... something happened..." the woman stuttered from sorrow as tears started to form in her eyes. Mikage watched the woman as she started to break down in front of him; it left him at a loss of what to do and say. After all she was always appeared to be strong and now seeing this left him saddened, not much would leave her in tears unless it was something really bad. Mikage immediately stood up as he watched her continue to cry her heart out. "She's not breathing Mikage... I don't know how or why but I can't stop it from happening" it was almost hard to hear what she was saying due to the fact that she was on the verge of hysterics. The God of Marriage placed his arms around the trembling woman's form.
"Do you want to tell me what happened, dear friend?" the woman was lead to the rock and nodded her thanks, after trying to compose herself to the best of her ability she then began to tell him everything starting from the very beginning. By the time she finished the woman had once again broke down causing tears to fall from her eyes, the tears didn't seem to stop as she cried and wailed in agony. Mikage on the other hand was at a loss of what to say. This was too much even for him, to think this happened and only they knew. No one else was aware of the incident.
"So where is-?" Mikage was about to ask only he stopped himself. He couldn't ask knowing that it left her more depressed to even speak about what happened.
"I created a time capsule, I was hoping that she would be frozen in time to prevent... but it's like she's giving up. Mikage the promise, how can she keep her promise if she's gone?" Mikage placed a hand on her trembling shoulder.
"If you have faith, they will be together again. Like what I have done, you have prolonged her suffering"
"Mikage she doesn't have time left, I tried to let her see what... but it's not the same. There is no change in her at all and then there's that boy... what kind of mess did we just weave? Why did it have to happen?"
"Something's happen for a reason, you need to believe in them now"
"I hope you are right, just don't tell him... it'll destroy him knowing that the promise has been broken... b-but what if he finds out?" she asks now looking at him with panic filled eyes.
"I will speak to him when the time comes, is something wrong?" Mikage suddenly took note of her unease.
"A girl will be coming to the shrine soon... please just tell her the truth if it eases her conscience... but I don't want her to lose her will to live, that girl is all that I have left Mikage. Protect her please" the woman pleaded. Mikage smiled softly at the distressed woman.
"I will do my best. When it is time she will know but I will let her see that no matter what, she is truly loved"