Scarlet x Eyes x Acquired
The next day everyone went their separate ways in the pairs of their battle matchup the other day so now it was only Kurapika and Sakura. It was still pretty awkward to be around her especially now when they were alone. He tries to busy himself with finding information on the location of the nearest scarlet eyes but it seemed that he would have to face the situation from yesterday again.
“Do you hate me?” Sakura suddenly asks.
Kurapika was taken aback by her straightforwardness.
“I don’t hate you.” Kurapika assures Sakura.
“Really, because you seem like you do.”
“Well yesterday, you wouldn’t make any eye contact with me and today I’m getting the vibe you really don’t want to be near me.” Sakura informs him, she had seen how he had sighed and noticed that the only words he had spoken to her was work related.
“Well yesterday was…” Kurapika trails off as he thought about his love struck phase. “That’s not the point, aren’t you the one who doesn’t want to be near me.”
Sakura knew that Kurapika was referring to the way she reacted to his scarlet eyes yesterday.
“I thought I told you that, that was nothing against you personally.” ‘Well only a little.’ Sakura only voices the last part in her mind.
“Well when people react that way to you, you tend to think they dislike you.”
Sakura stops walking and turns around. She grabs Kurapika’s collar and brings, brought it right up to her and stares into his eyes.
“See, I’m fine,” Sakura tells him even though he really wasn’t, blood had immediately rushed to his face.
“You’re really hot for some reason. Are you okay?” Sakura asks when the heat transfers to her hands. Her initial thought was that he had a fever so she leans in closer to touch their foreheads together so she could estimate his temperature.
“Y-Y-Yeah, I’m okay! I’m alright!” Kurapika panics and pushes Sakura away, which causes a confused look on her face.
‘What’s happening to me?!’ Kurapika shouts internally.
“Hey! We should probably get a move on, our destination is still a very long way away!” Kurapika speed walks past her.
“Wait, we had a time limit?!” Sakura yells and chases after Kurapika.
Even with Kurapika’s added motivation, they still had not arrived at their destination on their first day and had to stay the night at a random town on the way.
“We would like a room to stay for the night,” Kurapika tells the receptionist at a local inn.
“Sure, that will be 10,000 jenny.”
Kurapika hands in the money and was given the key to their room in return.
“Enjoy your honeymoon~” The receptionist yells out on their way to their room.
“Our what?” Sakura stops and turns back to the receptionist, whilst Kurapika was still too preoccupied with the incident before that he didn’t hear her and just proceeds to walk to their room. His shock came later when he opens the door to their room.
“Why is there only one bed?” Kurapika asks dubiously.
“She thinks we’re on out honeymoon…”
“That’s what I said!” Sakura shouts back with flailing arms.
“I’m going to talk to the reception lady about this.”
Kurapika storms out the door only to come back defeated a few moments later.
“…They’re all booked out… I can’t believe they thought we were a couple.”
“I can’t believe they thought you were a guy.”
“I am a guy!”
“Yeah I know, but you look…” Sakura starts before Kurapika gives her a death glare “Never mind.”
“Haah, what are we going to do now?” Kurapika sighs.
“What do you mean?” Sakura tilts her head in confusion.
“Were you not here a few moments ago?” Kurapika gestures to the one bed in the room.
“We can’t sleep in one bed together!”
“Why not? People do it all the time.”
“But we’re not… a couple.”
“So it’s weird for us to sleep in the same bed together!”
“Kurapika, stop being such an old-fashioned fart.”
“…O-Old fashioned fart?” Kurapika stutters at the weird insult.
“Look the only problem that I can sort of see with us sleeping in the same would be if we had actual feelings for each other, which we don’t,” Sakura explains.
“R-Right! We definitely don’t, I definitely don’t have feelings for you, none whatsoever.” Kurapika blurts out in a flustered state.
“Um…ok, dramatic much.” Sakura brushes Kurapika’s frazzled response off and walks towards the door. “I’m going to get some snacks.”
‘Thank god she’s dense!’ Kurapika thought with relief but in turn, Sakura’s under reaction causes him to focus on his reaction. He thought he would’ve gotten over his stupid feelings. Why did his hormonal instincts have to act up now, just because she was a little strong and a little cute- ‘Whoa, stop right there!’ Since when did he care about someone’s looks, especially hers, with her stupid pink hair and her stupid smile and her stupid eyes, which seems to sparkle whenever the light reflects off them…
“Hey, did you want anything?” Sakura peeks in through the door.
Kurapika jumps as the very person he was thinking of snaps him out of his thoughts. “I’m fine!” He quickly responds.
“Okay…” Sakura says before backing out through the door. ‘He’s getting weirder and weirder every time I see him.’
After Sakura left the room and Kurapika could hear her footsteps fading down the hall, he fell back on the bed and sighed.
“Time for bed!” Sakura shouts happily after getting out of the shower. She really wanted to jump on the bed.
“Whoa, hold a second!”
“What?” Sakura pouts when Kurapika stops her.
“Do you even have to ask? I’m not letting you in the bed until you dry your hair properly,” Kurapika says in a mother like manner.
“Can’t you see the air drying it? How much more ‘proper’ can you get?” Sakura tells him whilst twirling around the room to demonstrate her method.
“First of all, that doesn’t make sense and secondly come here and dry your hair properly with a towel.” Kurapika orders her and offers her a clean towel.
“Don’t wanna.” Sakura sticks her tongue out and pulls one of her eye at him.
Kurapika just sighs at her behavior and walks over to Sakura to drape the towel over her head. When she didn’t make a move to dry her hair with it, he let out another sigh and proceeds to go and dry her hair for her.
“Ugh, what are you my mother?” Sakura expresses her clear dislike of the action on her head.
“Well, I don’t want to sleep with someone who wets the bed.”
“You know what I meant!” Kurapika blushes as he realizes just how odd his previous sentence sounded out loud. “You shouldn’t make this a habit, you’ll catch a cold.”
“Too late, this is actually the first time drying my hair with a towel.” Sakura informs Kurapika with a cheeky smile.
“Didn’t anyone ever tell you to do this?”
“Uh… well, I’ve kind of been living alone most of my life so… nope.”
“Oh, sorry I didn’t mean to-”
“It’s fine, it’s not like I’ve been so sensitive about your situation.”
There was an awkward silence as the both of them sensed that they have crossed a line they shouldn’t have.
“Um… I think my hair is dry now.”
“Oh, right!” Kurapika quickly removes the towel off her head. “Let’s get to sleep!”
“But it’s not even that late yet,” Sakura whines.
“Yeah well, we have to get up early in the morning, so sleep.”
“Wait, we do?”
“Yes, we still have quite a bit to go before we reach the mansion.” Kurapika attempts to give a valid reason and proceeds to go under the covers.
“But I thought we were planning to attack in the middle of the night.” Sakura points out, only to be ignored.
“Fine, you go off to dreamland by yourself, I still want to stay up a bit later.” Sakura announces before turning off the light.
Seeing as Kurapika was sleeping on his side, Sakura decides to sit near the window so that his back was facing her. She stares at his sleeping form for a while before turning her head to the window. The moonlight shines gently on her face as she gazes out the window aimlessly. She moves the strands of hair that were blocking part of view and finds her hands wandering through her previously wet hair. She let out a sigh.
‘I wonder how long it’s been since someone has cared enough to dry my hair for me.’ Sakura thought with a sad smile. Although she knew it wasn’t anyone’s fault, she didn’t deserve their concern nor did she want it, so she supposed that this whole matter was mute.
Unbeknownst to her, Kurapika had looked over his shoulder and witnessed her in her disheartened state. He could tell that she had intended to keep this moment to herself so he decided not to say anything.
When Kurapika awakens, the first sight he sees is Sakura’s sleeping face. He blushes and goes to back away, but the thought of waking her up halts his movements and he tries his best to stay still.
‘She really is cute.’ Kurapika couldn’t help but think as he stares at her sleeping form.
However upon closer inspection, he notices the redness under her eyes. It was very light and from a distance he was sure no one would’ve noticed, but since he was so close to her face, the redness really stood out to him.
‘Has she been crying?’
Kurapika’s hand unconsciously reaches out to Sakura, but before he made contact her eyes snap open.
“What are you doing?”
Realizing that his hand was only inches away from Sakura’s face, Kurapika immediately retracts them. Unfortunately for him, he retracted his hand so fast that he lost his balance and went tumbling back off the bed, making the whole situation even more embarrassing.
At first Sakura just sat there staring at his crumpled form on the ground, but then after a few seconds later she burst out laughing.
“Ahahaha! You’re such a weird person!” Sakura says while hugging her stomach and wiping some of the tears escaping from her eyes.
Kurapika could only sit there, blinking with his face flushed with red.
“S-Shut up, you surprised me!” Kurapika yells in defense, but at least she seems happy now, maybe those red marks were from tears of joy… or maybe he was just overthinking all this. “A-Anyway hurry up and get ready,” He tells her as he sees that she was still in her pajamas and she clearly had bedhead. He didn’t know a lot about the behavior of girls but after being Neon’s bodyguard he knew how annoying it was to wait for them to get ready.
Sakura let out a tired yawn and rubs the tears from the yawn off her eyes before pulling the covers off herself and getting out of bed. At first she just stands there and trying to stay awake until her pajamas shatters into a bunch of cherry blossom petals. Kurapika goes to cover his eyes but then he notices that she still had a white skater dress on and let out a sigh of relief. Though as soon as the cherry blossom petals shatter, they gather together and swirl back around her again. In a matter of seconds, the petals had incases her before bursting out and revealing a completely dressed Sakura, her hair was nice and neat as well.
“All done.” Sakura announces and looks and Kurapika for confirmation. “What?”
“You make your own clothes?” Kurapika asks questionably.
“Don’t worry these are totally legit.” Sakura pulls on the hem of her shirt to prove her point. “Besides, this way I can use it as an armor as well, go ahead and punch me in the gut,” She tells Kurapika with wide open arms.
“I’m good…” Kurapika sweat drops.
After walking for about three hours, they had reached their destination, the mansion harbouring the scarlet eyes.
“What do we do now?” Sakura asks, a little annoyed. They were here way too early, just like she told Kurapika.
“The sun hasn’t even gone down yet,” Sakura tells Kurapika while gesturing to the sun still in the sky.
“Well, that means we have plenty of time to scout the area,” Kurapika tells her, trying to make this situation look like it’s a good thing and divert the attention away the reason for them being way to early.
“That’s stupid,” Sakura comments but since Kurapika was technically the leader, she had to follow him when he ‘scouts’ the area.
They actually did end up doing a pretty good job in scouting the area but a lot of the precautions were totally unnecessary in Sakura’s opinion.
‘When did he become such a caution freak?’ Sakura thought a feeling akin to disappointment.
When midnight, the time they both agreed on to enter the mansion finally came, Sakura immediately splits from Kurapika and heads for one of the windows.
“Hey-” Kurapika starts to yell after Sakura but quickly stopped himself before he gives them away to the guards who they had seen arrive after them. So now he had no choice but to follow Sakura’s lead and enter the building through the window she had picked open. However as soon as they were inside, he made sure to take the leadership role back. “Control complex much.” He hears Sakura mutter under her breath but decides to ignore it and continue on with the mission.
Kurapika continues down the hallway, making sure to avoid any security cameras or guards posted along the way. Sakura follows closely behind, also making sure to avoid the cameras. He didn’t look back to check if she did but no alarms were going off so it was safe to assume she did.
They weren’t sure exactly where the scarlet eyes were stored so they had to check all the rooms they came across. Kurapika decides to check all the rooms on the right whilst Sakura checks the rooms on the left.
They clear the first floor with no sign of the eyes. The mansion had a total five floors including the attic and basement so Kurapika decided he would head up to the next floor whilst Sakura took the basement. He assigned it this way since Sakura was quicker than he was and would be able to catch up to him faster if she found nothing.
‘This is going to take longer than I thought.’ Kurapika thought as he headed up the staircase to the second floor.
As soon as he steps foot on the second floor, an alarm went off. Caught off guard by the sudden alarm, Kurapika immediately looks back to see if something had happened to Sakura and discuss their next course of action, but unfortunately Sakura had already gone down to the basement. This action causes Kurapika to miss the guard who instantly appeared in front of him when the alarm went off. By the time he senses the presence in front of him, he had been kicked right in the stomach, which sends him tumbling back down the stairs. “Gah!” He wasn’t given any time to regroup as he sees the guard lift up his hand, which triggers his ability to create what seemed like balls of fire behind him. With a flick of the wrist, the fireballs come hurling towards Kurapika who was still in the midst of tumbling down the stairs.
‘Che.’ Kurapika clicks his tongue in annoyance. ‘A nen user.’
Acting quickly, Kurapika launches his chains, wraps them a nearby pillar and pulls on it to avoid the fireballs coming his way. Luckily he made it in time and the fireballs ends up scorching the floor at the bottom of the stairs. He lands next to the pillar and moves around it so that his back face up against the pillar, hiding him from the guard’s sight.
“Do you really think you can hide from me?” The guard sneers as he lifts his hand up again.
Kurapika expected the fireballs to appear from behind the guard like last time, but he soon found out that he was completely wrong. Instead of appearing behind the guard, the fireballs appear right in front of him. He quickly dives to the ground to avoid the fireballs and did one complete tuck and roll to get him back on his feet, but now he was now out in plain view.
“Hmph. Impressive, but let’s see you dodge these.”
The guard lifts both his hands up and fireballs appear all around Kurapika before they were hurled in his direction. He knew he wouldn’t be able to dodge all of them completely so he decides to let some of them in but made sure that nothing vital would be hit.
“Agh!” Kurapika cries out in pain as the fireballs burn through his clothes sears his skin. Luckily he was able to get out without getting severely injured and he was still able to move around quite freely, if he ignored the pain. Plus during the last attack he was able to discover how the guard’s nen ability really worked and what conditions need to be met. He found that the fireballs took about three seconds to fully form and only appears at the general direction in which the guard was pointing at.
‘I just have to reach him and restrict his arm movements.’ Kurapika thought. ‘But from this distance, the only way I could get to him quick enough would be to use my scarlet eyes and activate emperor time.’ He really didn’t want to use his scarlet eyes and risk its side effects but it seems like he had no other choice. The longer he let this fight drag on, the more he would be at a disadvantage.
After much deliberation, he determines that using his eyes was the best course of action. He waits for the guard to use his ability again and the second Kurapika sees flecks of flames around him, he activates his scarlet eyes causing his speed to increase immensely when he powers himself up with nen. The guard was caught off guard by the sudden increase of speed and he was able to seal the guards’ hands behind him. However, that wasn’t enough to stop the guard.
“If I’m going down, I’m taking you with me.” The guard states coolly, which only clearly registers in Kurapika’s mind when he feels the heat above him.
Kurapika makes the action to move out from under the fireballs but the guard wasn’t about to let him and grips his chains to keep him from dodging from dodging the assault. The fireballs rain down upon them and both were caught in the attack.
Meanwhile, Sakura had heard the alarm go off but decided to ignore it and continue down the stairs to the basement.
‘Geez, how much longer will it be until I reach the bottom?’ Sakura thought. Her question is soon answered as she hits an invisible wall.
“Ite.” Sakura voices out her pain as she rubs the spot on her forehead that had smacked into the invisible wall. “What was that?”
Sakura moves her arm out of her line of vision only to find out there was nothing in front of her. Well, she did see the stairs continuing down to who knows where, but she knew she definitely hit something solid.
‘This doesn’t make sense.’
Sakura slowly reaches out in front of her and finds that there was indeed something solid in front of her.
‘Maybe if I…’
Sakura gathers her nen up to her eyes in hopes that she could see whatever it was in front of her using gyou.
Through gyou, the hidden door to the basement was revealed. Sakura turns the door handle and tries to push the door open, but it doesn’t budge. She tries pulling, thinking it was one of those awkward moments when you try to open the door the wrong way, but it still wouldn’t budge. She focuses her nen onto her arms and tries again, but once again, it didn’t shift in the slightest.
‘Why… won’t… you… op…’ Sakura thought as she pushes and pulls with all her might, only to discover that there was a keypad next to the door ‘en…’
Sakura had a huge urge to face palm, but that wouldn’t turn out well right now with her strengthened arms. Instead she lets out a sigh and contemplates on how to open the door, taking into account the newfound information. Although in the end, she decides to just open the door with force, since figuring out a password took too much effort in her opinion and she her time was limited in this situation. She goes through her list of firearms in her mind to see, which one was best suited for this situation. She imagines what would happen if she launched a bazooka here and concludes that it would attract way too much attention so instead she regrettably conjures up a sword out of her nen and cut the door apart. At first it looked like she just did one clean slice through the middle of the door, but later as the two halves shifts, all her other slices because visible as the two sides are then split into many pieces, which crashes to the ground almost simultaneously.
‘Maybe I shouldn’t have done that…’ Sakura thought and turns around nervously to see if anyone had come running from the loud crashing sounds.
She waits for a while for people to show up and attack her, but no one shows up and she couldn’t feel anyone coming her way either, then a realization dawns on her.
‘They could come from inside the basement!’ She thought and quickly spins around and puts up her guard, but no one was coming to get her from inside the basement either nor could she feel any presences.
‘There is a chance they’re concealing their presences…’ With that thought in mind, Sakura lifts her katana up and considers whether to change the sword into guns or just keep it as is.
Personally she preferred guns as the sword brings back a lot of unwanted feelings, but changing weapons now would be dangerous. Someone could be lurking in the basement, waiting for a chance to ambush her for all she knew. Guns don’t work that well in close combat anyway.
‘Haah, I guess I’ll keep the sword.’ Sakura sighs and conjures up a belt and a matching sheath out of her nen. She made the belt hold the sheath on her back horizontally since she didn’t like how swords tend to dangle on your side. She whips the sword out in front of her to get any stray residue of the door off before sliding it in the sheath behind her.
Sakura proceeds to make her way into the dark basement. She doesn’t bother finding the light switch, as the light from the open doorway was enough for her to see. She was used to walking around in the night anyway, so the darkness didn’t bother her much.
After exploring the room for a good while, Sakura discovers that the room wasn’t very big at all. It was more like a massive vault than a basement under a mansion. Either that or these people were very cheap when it came to the rooms under the ground. So instead of walking around to search, she decides to go back to the light of the open door and do a quick scan of the room, to see if there were any abnormalities that could be related to the scarlet eyes.
After seeing how small the room was, Sakura deems that it was safe to assume no one was inside the room besides her. She would still have to watch the door incase someone from the outside finally realizes she was in here, but that wasn’t really going to affect what she was about to do. She decides that it was safe enough to create a flashlight and shine it through the room, so she did exactly that. She conjures up her petals and combines them together to create a bright, working flashlight. She shines the flashlight throughout the room and finds that it was full of antics.
‘Maybe the scarlet eyes is actually here!’ Sakura thought excitedly, after all scarlet eyes were kind of an antic, right? Well either way, she was really fired up, as there was a very good chance they were in here and she could find them, give them to Kurapika and never have to be near them ever again. At least not that pair in particular.
Sakura carefully scans the room from one side to the other, making sure not to miss any details. When she reaches near the middle of the room, it turns out that her efforts were not in vain. At the very back she was sure there was a faint reddish glow. Her eyes may just be playing tricks on her but she wasn’t afraid to play along. She quickly made her way through the hoard of antics to the area where she swear is glowing red. She clears the area around the red glow and finds that it was coming from under this object covered in a black cloth.
‘Please be it. Please be it.’ Sakura chants in her mind, as she goes to uncover the unknown object.
Once the cloth was off, much to her joy, a pair of red glowing eyes in some kind of container was revealed underneath.
‘Yes! I’ve never been more glad to see these in my life!’
Sakura picks up the eyes with triumph in her own eyes and places it in the bag she had conjured up before they even entered the mansion. Who said she wasn’t an organized type of person. She happily turns around and runs up the stairs, she couldn’t wait to show these to Kurapika and shove it in his face. Well not literally, that would be weird. She continues to carry her happy mood to the first floor, until she sees Kurapika who was still smoking from the fire.
“Kurapika!” Sakura yells out, her mood plummets down immediately. She runs up to him and shoves the random person next to Kurapika away. She flips Kurapika onto his back and presses her ear on top of his chest. It took a while but she finally heard a heartbeat.
‘Thank God, he’s alive!’ A wave of relief rushes over her. However the relief that Kurapika was alive only lasted a second as she sees the terrible burn marks all over his body
‘Why wasn’t I born an enhancer?!’ Sakura thought with dismay, if she was, she would be able to heal him. She did know the process to heal but she knew that her nen wasn’t strong enough in the field to make any real difference. No, actually there was one way that she could make her healing ability strong enough to heal Kurapika, but it was the one thing she never wanted to use as long as she lived.
Her scarlet eyes.
Sakura knew how to activate them and that it would give her an enormous amount of power in every field of nen, but she really didn’t want to use them. This wasn’t because of the side effects she knew the action would ensure; it was more of a personal issue. But what choice did she have, she couldn’t just let Kurapika suffer and possibly die. That’s right, she couldn’t let emotions determine a choice of life and death of a friend.
With that resolution in mind, Sakura closes her eyes and when she opens them back up again they were glowing scarlet. She gathers her nen to her hands and lays them on top of Kurapika.
‘I hope this works.’ Sakura prays as she injects Kurapika with a huge amount of her nen that she had converted to heal things. The reaction her nen had on Kurapika truly shocked her. She watches as her nen flows from the point in the body she had originally place it in and spread out all throughout the body, healing Kurapika at an amazing speed. She watches as the burn marks on his skin slowly fades away. “Whoa.” Was the only thing that escapes her mouth. She would have liked to just stay there and watch the healing process to completion, but then she starts to detect people heading their way.
“We better get out of here.” Sakura tells to Kurapika, but receives no response, as he was still unconscious.
Sakura lets out a sigh and throws Kurapika over her shoulder before making her daring escape and by that she means running out the front door. Hey, it was right in front of her, she wasn’t bothered to run all the way back to the window they entered in and trying to get both Kurapika and her through a hole meant for one person. She wasn’t that industrious when it came to being a thief. She powers herself up with her nen and she was out of there faster than you could say ‘fudge’. She decides to stop just outside the nearest town to the mansion, which was quite far away, like maybe an hour distance if you walk.
“Sakura?” A voice calls out from the entrance of the city.
Sakura turns around to see Chase and Killua, who were staring at her with wide eyes.
‘What are they staring at… Crap.’
Sakura only realizes now that she had forgotten to switch off her scarlet eyes.