❯ Yasashii Yoake ( Gentle Dawn) – Encounter ( Chapter 6 )
Yasashii Yoake (Gentle Dawn) By Sakura (aka L-sama no Miko) 6: Encounter &nbs p; The scantily clad merc glared at the blonde angel before her. ‘How dare she trick me like that!!’ she fumed. ‘Poor Tsukasa.’ B.T. said nothing, instead choosing to smile as if nothing had happened. “It’s a nice day, isn’t it?” the tall blue and white painted merc asked in an attempt to play peacemaker. “Shut up,” his tanned partner spat icily. Taken aback by that, Bear backed off. “You’d better have a damned good reason for me not to run you through right here and now!” she yelled at the older woman. “I swear, I had nothing to do with that,” the angel replied, “The Crimson Knights weren’t supposed to know about that.” “Oh really now,” Mimiru said sarcastically. “As I told you before, I heard that story I told you from another adventurer. Maybe he told the knights as well.” “Still sounds like another lie to me. I doubt that monster toting Heavy Blade is even real!” “Look,” pleaded the angel. “I only told you what I heard. I never said I saw the guy.” “Hmph. Why don’t I trust you?” Mimiru shot back with even more sarcasm, her hand slipping to the hilt of her sword. “That’s enough, Mimiru,” the taller merc interjected, coming between them. “Yeah, enough from her you mean,” the girl spat. “I hate to be rude here,” B.T. started, “But it seems to me that you’re just venting your anger out on me.” “N-NANDA YO!!! (What did you say?!)” sputtered the tanned merc. “You’re thinking it was your fault he got caught because you told him to meet you there. You’re trying to make yourself feel better by making me take the blame. Am I right?” the blonde asked smugly. “B.T.!” scolded Bear. “That’s enough! Arguing about what’s in the past won’t do any of us any good. We need to concentrate on what to do from here on.” “Bear’s right,” agreed Mimiru. “We’ve got to find a way to rescue Tsukasa!” ********************* Meanwhile at the dungeon turned temporary jail, a cobalt haired and winged angel strode solemnly down the water filled hall. Stopping before the guarded doors at the end, she turned to her escorts. “You will remain,” she said to the horned knight at her side. “I am going alone.” “My lady,” Silver Knight pleaded. Subaru glared sternly at her second in command. “I said I will go alone,” she commanded, “I wish to speak with the cleric inside. Do I make myself clear?” “Yes, my lady,” he agreed, albeit reluctantly. The knights guarding the doors bowed to her and opened them, allowing her to pass over the glowing blue line of the kekkai keeping the demon inside. Inside, the silver haired demon sat against one shadowed wall, his head on his knees. A single green firefly fluttered around him and landed on one knee. A look of pity fell on the angel’s face at the miserable boy. She bent down, hoping that he’d be more comfortable if they were on the same eye level. “I’m truly sorry for what happened,” she apologized. “It’s all my fault for making you go through such a horrible ordeal. I wanted to talk with you and there was no other way because my power can only go so far.” The demon continued to sit glumly, hugging his legs while the firefly contentedly blinked every few seconds. “Now that we can talk, I really can’t think of a single thing to say,” she said, smiling sheepishly. “You smell…” he said, lifting his head, “nice.” Subaru blushed. It wasn’t everyday someone came up to her and said she ‘smelled nice’. “Um… what do you think you’ll do now?” she asked, sitting down next to him. “Well,” he replied, smiling a little. “That all depends on you doesn’t it? After all, your friends have made sure I can’t leave here.” “That’s only because of your reckless behavior. If you’d stop, then we wouldn’t be able to keep you here any longer.” “Reckless?” he asked. “That odd monster of yours,” explained the angel. “Look all I wanted was to be left alone,” he spat back, the smile gone from his face. “If you keep them from bothering me, then I won’t have to be ‘reckless.’” “Is that a promise?” “I keep my part if you will,” answered Tsukasa. “You have my word, I’ll do all I can. There is one more thing though.” “If you want to know why, don’t ask,” interrupted the priest, “I don’t understand it myself.” “Please,” she begged, “I have to know. What can you tell me about the Key of the Twilight?” “Never heard of it,” he replied truthfully. “I didn’t think you would,” she said. ************************************************************** ************ The sound of someone warping echoed throughout the mushroom and toadstool riddled plain. The chocolate haired mercenary drew her sword and held it defensively before her. “I know you’re there!” she called. “Show yourself!” She cried out as a green haired, black clad demon dropped mere inches from her face from above. “You called?” he said playfully. “Whatever,” she spat annoyed at the demon assassin’s antics. “Yeesh, can’t you show up like a normal person for once?” “But my dear, this is normal for me,” he replied smirking. “Ok, whatever.” She then proceeded to shove her sword into the demon’s face. “I know it was you who sold out Tsukasa to the Crimson Knights!” “Sold out? Me?” “Don’t try to lie out this!” she spat back. “I didn’t get paid,” Sora began nonchalantly, “Soooo you can’t go around saying I sold anyone out.” “Kisama!!!” she yelled, slashing at him. However, the demon quickly jumped back, missing the deadly strike. “Better watch where you swing that thing,” taunted Sora, “You just might cut your feet off.” “Tell where Tsukasa is right now!!!!!!” Mimiru demanded. The demon assassin held his twin blades defensively, obscuring most of his face. “You really want to know?” he asked, his ruby eyes glinting mischievously. “What do you think?!” the human spat back. “Just how much are you willing to pay?” “Whatever it takes,” she replied determinedly, narrowing her aqua eyes. The demon let out an amused chuckle as he turned away. “Jya ne!” he called, as he started walking away. “Just where do you think you’re going!” she yelled, following him. After taking a few more steps, the green haired demon glanced over his shoulder, smirking at the tanned merc. She sighed defeatedly. “Alright, you win. What do I have to do?” “Not much,” he replied still smirking. “Just help me a bit.” ******************************************************** ******************* Back at the temporary jail, Silver Knight continued to pace as he waited for their leader to return from her talk with the prisoner beyond the large double doors. He turned to stare worriedly at them, missing the entrance of a certain demon assassin. “I’m here,” the demon called in greeting. The horned knight turned and glared at the demon. “No one is to enter here while we are talking,” he said, “Those are Lady Subaru’s orders.” “Oh? Aren’t you worried with her in there… all alone?” Sora taunted. “He is powerless inside that kekkai,” was the stern reply. “Then you won’t mind if I test it then.” “What are you playing at demon?” “Why, this!” he said, smirking smugly. He then promptly shoved one of his blades into the knight’s poorly protected chest. The wound wasn’t fatal, however, the poison on the blade would make sure the man would be out of commission long enough for him to do what he came to do. The guards at the door trembled at the crazy eyed demon, grasping their own swords. Before any of them could react, Sora had switched to a different set of blades and had stabbed both in the chest. Unlike their commander, these poor fools were dead. Sora let out a maniacal chuckle. “He’s mine,” he said gleefully, opening the doors. Upon hearing footsteps, the cobalt haired angel got to her feet, her long axe held before her. She glared at the demon who had dared disturb them. “I told them not to let anyone enter here,” she said. “Who said you could do so?” The demon assassin grinned. “Why me of course,” replied the demon. “By the way, I think you may need that friend of yours there. I don’t think your friends outside are doing so well. “You monster!” Subaru glared at him, switching the axe into a more offensive stance. “Give me Tsukasa-chan if you please,” he demanded. There was a dangerous glint in the demon’s ruby eyes. “Request denied.” “It really doesn’t matter,” he countered, “since I’ll be taking him anyway.” Subaru continued to glare at him, refusing to back down. Both combatants, however, were distracted by the clanking of metal on stone as the demon cleric rose to his feet, using his staff to help him up. “You did say I was free to go,” Tsukasa said, butting in. “I did,” replied Subaru, “But…” “Good, then I’ll be going with him.” “Smart boy,” said the green haired demon. “You don’t have to do this,” the angel pleaded, turning to the silver haired priest. “If you do this, I can guarantee there’ll be nothing but trouble for you.” “Well?” Sora called impatiently, “are you coming or not?” “Goodbye,” the silver haired demon said, starting toward the other demon. “Tsukasa!” Subaru pleaded once more. “Don’t follow me,” he said softly, barely able to be heard as he passed by her, his steps echoing hollowly on the stone floor. “You see, he wants to come with me,” the black clad demon shot as he turned to follow the priest. “Buh-bye!” The demon assassin then began to merrily hum to himself as he and Tsukasa disappeared from sight. The cobalt haired angel could only stare worriedly after them. The two demons ran through the dungeon, Sora giggling like a madman at the boy’s side. As they reached the entrance, a red clad angel with spiky blue hair and wings appeared, blocking their escape. “Not so fast!!!!” he shouted, pointing his spear at them. “Don’t stop,” the demon assassin said to his partner. Tsukasa nodded, not once slowing his pace. “Don’t say I didn’t warn you,” the angel replied, exasperated. He then lunged at Sora who nimbly jumped away from the spear, deftly landing on the shaft, much to Crim’s surprise. “Get going,” the assassin said, smiling and turning to Tsukasa who had stopped when Crim attacked. The green haired demon then swiped a blade at the blue haired angel who in turn dodged the attack. “Hello again,” Crim said, greeting the priest. Tsukasa attempted to run past but the angel called out again. “Chotto matte (Wait a second)!” The silver haired demon paused, unsure of what to do. “Don’t tell me you want to get caught again,” complained Sora, obviously annoyed at his partner’s confusion. Tsukasa stood still for a few more moments then ran off past the two. Crim let out a yell as he once again attempted to strike at the demon assassin. Sora smirked smugly as he caught the spear’s blade with his own weapons. “You’re good,” the angel said. “You should be using those skills to do something good for once.” “Puh-leeze,” spat the demon. “Don’t be so old fashioned.” He lunged at his opponent again, the clash of metal upon metal echoing off the dungeon walls. Meanwhile, Tsukasa panted heavily as he ran out of the dungeon. He gasped when he felt something grab hold of his arm. Whirling around he saw that it was the annoying mercenary he’d met a few times before. “Sorry if I scared you,” she said, smiling. “Come with me!” The silver haired demon sighed, seeing that he had no other choice. After all, he knew from experience that this particular human wasn’t one who took no for an answer. *************************************************** & #8220;Hope you’re not angry with me,” Mimiru said after having warped to a rather eerie field with dead trees covered with knots that resembled skulls. Tsukasa just glared at her sourly, dragging his foot along the hard ground. “I’m really sorry,” she apologized, “I never meant for that to happen to you. Really. I didn’t even know they’d be there until Bear pointed them out to me. Hey! Are you even listening to me?!” “Are you done?” he replied, annoyed at the human’s prattling. “Can I go now?” “”Do you really hate me that much?” she asked incredulously. “Yes,” he replied, not bothering to look at her. “I don’t want to talk to any of you. I just want to get out of here and be alone.” “Oh. But… can’t you just wait a bit more?” He looked at her, waiting for her to explain, “Sora… that guy who saved you is coming here.” “Oh, so that’s your game. If I was to go with him, I’d vanish as soon as I left their kekkai. That’s why you were waiting for me.” “No! That’s not it!” she countered. “You’re gonna hand me over to him aren’t you.” “No! Can’t you believe me when I say you’re wrong?! I’m just worried about you, that’s all.” “Usotsuki (Liar)!” he spat, making her gasp. “All of you are just thinking of yourselves! Not one of you has ever thought about my feelings!” “Y-You just don’t understand,” she stammered, desperate to salvage whatever trust the demon priest had left. “No I don’t,” he agreed, “I don’t even understand myself anymore. I don’t even care about the rest of you!” He then began to warp from the field. “No! Don’t!” Mimiru cried, but the silver haired demon had completely vanished from sight. The sound of warping appeared from behind her. The scantily clad merc whirled around, hoping that Tsukasa had changed his mind and came back, but to her dismay, it was the black clad demon assassin. “I got bored playing with that fool, so I called a draw,” he said cheerfully. “So where’s our little friend?” “He’s gone,” his human partner replied sulkily. “You’d better be joking,” he warned. “He just left, soooo no one’s gonna catch him now,” she said teasing him. “That’s why I don’t like working with humans,” whined Sora, “They’re completely useless.” ************************** A half hour later, Silver Knight had recovered from the assassin’s attack and was now escorting his commander out of the prison dungeon. “We must issue an official warrant for both of them immediately,” he said, extremely angry at being caught off guard yet again. “No,” the cobalt haired angel scolded, “it’s unnecessary. I will see how this plays out for a bit.” “But, my lady… why?!” “I have a plan.” “Then let me hear it, please.” “It’s not the time for it yet,” she replied, knowing he wouldn’t like it. “Besides, you’d not like it. Perhaps when the time is right.” “If this goes on like this, our power and the peoples’ trust in us will fall to pieces.” “But trust in power that relies on words and not action, will only destroy it faster,” she retorted. “Lady Subaru, I’d like to know what you and that demon were talking about for so long,” he requested, deciding to drop the current subject. She suddenly stopped, giving him little time to react. “That priest, Tsukasa, is already in prison. He was there even before we caught him.” &nb sp; “Silver Knight!” the crimson clad angel called as they exited the dungeon, causing them to turn around. “Get stronger.” &nbs p; “My training is no concern of yours.” & nbsp; “That may be so,” came the retort, “But it seems you’ve forgotten how much of a buttinsky I am.” The smile on the blue haired angel’s face quickly vanished. “You have to accept your weakness,” he said, “Change it into strength. You can’t protect her the way you are now.” &nb sp; The horned man grunted angrily at the insult. “He’s only a common adventurer,” Subaru said coldly, “don’t listen to him.” The two angels stared at each other for a few moments before the shorter one turned away, ashamed at the insult she had to utter in front of a former comrade and friend. “I’m going back to Mac Anu,” she announced, as golden rings formed around her. “As you wish, my lady,” Silver Knight replied, shortly following her. Crim let out a mournful sigh. “I never should have quit,” he muttered. ********************************************************** ** “You don’t think I was too harsh with him do you?” the tanned merc asked as she leant against one of the few stone statues of Dun Loireag. “You probably were being too intense with him,” replied her much taller partner. “You do get like that sometimes.” “Yeah, but I got an extra helping today. First with that angel friend of yours and then Sora. What a pain! By the way Bear, why do you stick up for B.T. anyway?” “What do you mean, stick up for her? Me?” “Yes you! It was you who figured that story she told was fake, so why didn’t you tell her? “I never said it was fake, Mimiru,” replied Bear, “I only said it was probably fake.” “But still, it was a trap to lure Tsukasa.” “Can’t disagree with that.” “What I don’t get is why.” “Let me guess, you want to interrogate B.T. again?” “Interrogate her?!” the merc asked incredulously. “No way, she’d just pretend not to know a thing.” “Yeah. She’d had one heck of a laugh too.” A short while later, Mimiru was walking along one of the town’s bridges when said angel came walking in her direction. Sighing, she steeled herself. “Bear’s in the square,” she said. “Leaving I see,” replied B.T. “Yep. I’m bushed,” the merc said passing by her, yawning loudly. “I’d check the gossip if I were you.” Mimiru paused and whirled around. “It’s about Tsukasa isn’t it?!” “Not quite,” the angel said grimly, “It appears that Tsukasa’s pet has company. There was a monster sighting. This time it was alone.” ****************************************************** * The dragon gave out a death yell as its severed head flew from its body and landed with a loud thud. The three adventurers panted heavily, their weapons still held defensively before them. Suddenly the lifeless body began to twitch. “I-It’s still alive?!” shouted a redheaded swordsman. “But how?!” asked his raven haired companion, “Monster’s don’t come back to life!” The body gave another twitch then golden gelatinous goop began to shoot out from various holes in the dragon’s corpse. “T-This is not good,” said the blue haired sorcerer, “Run!” They quickly ran as the goop completely covered the body. Within moments the golden mess had formed into an exact copy of Tsukasa’s ‘pet.’ The creature let out a mournful howl into the night sky. *************************************************************** * “There has been a sighting in this territory,” Lady Subaru began as the gondola traveled down the canal, “And one in the Loireag province as well and yet another in the Carmina zone in Helba. What’s troubling is that all these monsters seem to have appeared at the same time. Tell me, what do you think of this?” “Maybe they’re looking for him?” the horned man posed. “He’s no longer hidden by our kekkai,” she replied, “so that can’t be it. Besides, as far as I can understand, he only had one under his command.” “Then they must be out for revenge against our capturing Tsukasa.” “Silver Knight, why must you talk of such things?” she asked sighing. “What is going on appears to be part of a much bigger flow of things. I fear this boy will be the first to get swept away by it.” “You’re saying that he is a victim as well? Do you really believe that, my lady?” “Those mercenaries, Bear and Mimiru were saying the same thing.” “Don’t you think it odd that two human mercenaries would be speaking on the behalf of a demon? How can you agree with people like that?!” “That’s enough,” she warned, “What we should be worried about is that we don’t where this strange flow of events came from or where it’s headed for that matter. Or even better still why it’s even happening. Many have noticed this new flow. I fear the Descendants of Fianna, Lord Orca and Lord Balmung have…” “Hmm?” prodded the knight, not liking the worry and fear in his leader’s voice. “Here are your new orders,” she said, immediately changing the subject, “Any and all pursuit of the demon cleric, Tsukasa, is to cease since it is no longer necessary.” “My lady! Are you saying that we should allow that demon do as he pleases?!” he protested indignantly. “I assure you, that is not my intent. I want you to increase your patrols and to warn all adventurers and mercenaries about these monsters. Tell them not to attempt to fight should they come across one. They are to leave immediately.” “Do you really think they’ll listen without any explanations, Lady Subaru?” “We will think of some reason, somehow. One last thing, Silver Knight, this is going to be extremely hard for I don’t even know where to start. But we must look into this. Just what is this rushing current that has swept away Tsukasa?” “Why the urgent need for answers all of a sudden?” “I fear that sometime soon, this flow will become even larger. So large in fact, that it will swallow up the entire world.” ****************************************************** ********** Meanwhile, Tsukasa was back at what he had considered to be his new home. He sat leaning against the cherub’s bed, looking up at the ominous purple sky. “I’m not leaving here ever again,” he said. “I’m just going to stay here and do nothing. I don’t even want to listen to those stupid idiots anymore.” ; ~TBC!!!~ Sakura: Hooboy! I don’t believe you actually like this minna!! Haseo: Neither can I. Sakura: Who asked you?! Anyhoo, I’m honored you even decided to read this far!! Many many many thanks! Keep the feedback coming! I need all the help and ideas I can get!