Anonymous said: /SCREAMS
Silence, you blithering fool.
The most difficult journey is the journey to our fullest potential. A frightening one, full of doubt and regret, and most men fail before they reach the end. But I knew when I found him and beat him that I had met my final bar to hurdle. Now I am content, now I am at peace.
Why then, did I travel so very far? Without warning, vanishing into the night. I wondered what he might think every so often, but I felt pressed to simply walk. I walked to the edge of the fortress, and then to the last groves of the forests, and then all the way out of the forest of fools where we were camped and onto the plateau of the beheaded where I made my way even further into the valley of providence which glowed a dusky purple in the setting sun. I camped there that night, and waited for him to come.
As he sat by my side, lazily flexing the fingers of his scarred and burned right arm, he seemed lost in thought. Something had him troubled, something that I could tell involved me from the way he kept glancing in my direction. When I finally asked him to speak, he merely shook his head and rolled his eyes.
I knew that he was curious as to why I’d walked all the way to the valley of providence without cause. I was curious myself, and had as few answers as he did.
That night, as we lay underneath a blanket of stars on a milky black sea, I watched the way the wind tossed his hair and made the cuffs of his sleeves ruffle. When he sleeps, he curls his knees up to his chest and keeps his sword tucked between his legs. Tonight he merely lay on his side, his sword left alone and his legs unclamped. I wondered if he felt safe when he was with me, or if he simply felt more comfortable sleeping this way on hard earth. I didn’t have the courage to ask him.
I do not know why, but laying next to him I became aware that there was a thick knot in my throat and a burning sensation in my eyes. It took me a good five minutes to realize that it was the onslaught of emotion, which I had not felt in so many hundreds of years. The dampness of my cheeks surprised me, bringing me to a sitting position as I wiped them clean and blinked blearily at our slowly dying camp fire.
What was it about him that made me so ungodly weak, and yet strong at the same time?
"… What?" I said aloud, touching my damp fingers to my cracked lips, tasting the salt of my tear there. "What?"
"What are you on about now?" He growled irritable to be awoken from his sleep.
"… I was thinking on a most curious matter." I murmured, sniffing and wiping my face again as I reached out gingerly to touch the camp fire. It made me feel more like myself, to touch heat and to not feel it’s pain from my calloused hands. Tears were not a common occurence and emotion I had learned only brought pain and suffering.
But could there be such thing as a good pain?
"The world is full of curious matters." Hiei replied, sitting up and brushing off his arms where blades of grass clung like the fingers of needy children. "So which one are you thinking about?"
I did not answer immediately, wondering what he would say if I simply replied with ‘you’. But he seemed to know that ‘you’ was my response, for he scooted a little closer to me and cracked his neck with a groan.
"Let it go." he murmured. "Let it be."
"I can’t." I shook my head sorrowfully, "It’s consuming me to know. Is it weakness to need? After a lifetime of needing nothing… needing something is a terrifying prospect. What if it goes away? What if it is killed? What if one day, I find that it no longer stands me, and never returns?" I gestured my hand with each bitter proposal, weighing the weight of my words in my hands. "What then, Hiei… What then."
"And what do you need so desperately?" He asked quietly. "Tell me what it is."
"You shouldn’t ask questions you don’t want to know the answers to." I warned him, chewing on my half deformed lip.
He was quiet at my side, staring at me with curiosity and worry.
"It will not go away." He responded shortly. It took me off guard, for I was so lost in thought I had almost forgotten he was beside me. I started, looking around confusedly.
"What do you mean?" I asked warily.
"…It will not go away." Hiei repeated, nodding his head in a promise, "Because I won’t let it. If you need it that badly, I’ll make sure it never leaves. If you tell me what it is, I’ll see that it stays, even if I have to chain it to the floor in the dungeon and torture it on pain of death."
I laughed aloud at this, for it was a typical Hiei thing to say. Force, as wild and untamable as the wild wind that swept the plains of demon world. He was pure force, that pushed past all barriers without care or concern for the consequences. He refused to take no for an answer, he cared nothing for the pain of others that was caused by his quest.
It was one of the many things that I enjoyed about him. He kept pushing.
"So what is it?" He asked for the second time. "Tell me and I’ll make sure it never leaves."
I nodded, closing my eyes and bowing my head.
"… It’s…" I paused, sighing at my own insufferable weakness. "It’s not something you could chain to the floor, or torture. It’s not something you could force to stay. It wouldn’t matter what barrier you set in it’s way… it would overcome everything."
"It won’t overcome me." Hiei warned, and I could sense the challenge in his voice.
"If you looked in a mirror, and saw your reflection, could you tame it?" I asked quietly. "Could you chain it to the floor? Could you torture yourself to make yourself stay?"
Hiei stared at me in foreboding silence, his red eyes full of understanding as he looked away momentarily off into the darkened fields of lavender that covered the plains.
"… It won’t leave." Hiei finally replied, his voice thick with somber acceptance. "It will never leave."
"You don’t know that-"
"I know my own path, I have followed it this far, haven’t I?!" Hiei demanded in a rush, shouting so that I jumped with fright. My heart raced, my blood pumped… I’d touched a nerve, and I could tell he was fuming.
"Can you not see?" He continued on, grabbing me by my mechanical arm and pulling at me insistently, "That everything I have done, everything I will ever do… was to be near you?"
I finally met his eyes, and my gaze lingered upon his own for so long that I forgot we were in the cold with a dying fire. So hot was my blood, so urgent was my need to see him and be near him that the cold could not touch my fragile flesh.
"The detective-" I whispered, "Your sister…"
"He is no longer a detective. If he needs me, I will go to him… but I will not stay with him." Hiei shook his head, "I cannot stay with him, when I need to be near something else. Someone else."
"And your sister?" I whispered again, my breath held pensively in my chest. If there was anyone in the world that could stand in the way of Hiei holding to our line of trust, it would be her. That fair maiden with hair like the sea and skin as white and cold as ice. I’d seen her once, and remarked just how incredibly similar to her brother she was. Just as strong, just as determined. I wondered how she’d stayed strong, leaving her home and seeking out a strange world.
If Hiei was the prize, I could understand her ambition.
"Yukina is safe with Genkai and Kuwabara- oaf that he is." Hiei sneered at the last, "Yukina does not need me. She does not need an ex felon and a con man for a brother. She needs an shimmering image that will never appear. I watch her from afar… but afar is as close as I come."
"Why?" I choked out, my face screwing up as I quickly covered my weakness with my sole good hand. "Why do you not tell her?"
"Because she doesn’t need to know." Hiei urged, grasping me by the wrist and pulling my hand away from my face so that he could see my distress.
My ugly, futile, disgusting, piggish distress.
"She matters so much to me." Hiei finally continued on, his breathing labored as if he was having trouble containing his own emotion, "So very much. So much-" He stopped, and I was shocked to see him lower his head and take a steadying breath, "I can’t." he finally concluded, "I cannot stain what she loves so dearly. It doesn’t exist, but I can’t be the one to break that to her. Let her live in delusion. Let her believe that her brother is good and pure. But don’t tell her she left her ancestral homeland and traveled across two worlds just to see the dirtied mug of a felon. Don’t tell her that it was in vain."
"Hiei.." I murmured, reaching out and grasping him on the knee, "You’ve put her on a pedestal that no one can live up to. You realize that, don’t you?"
"… Yes." Hiei nodded bitterly, "But that is my own fault, and I cannot correct it now."
"It’s okay." I shrugged, trying to lighten his load by my smile. I could tell when he grinned that I had succeeded, and I leaned into his embrace gently, afraid it might break if I pushed too far, "I need the wind, and I can’t contain it forever. I’ve become devoted, attached to something that cannot be devoted back. To something that will always want to roam. But I have to trust that he will return- that you will return."
"… I will." Hiei assured me, letting me lay my head on his chest so that I could hear the heart that beat there, steady as a drum through the night and day… steady as the wind and the rivers of demon world… as sure and solid as the mountains that barred our land.
"I may not always stay, but I will always return."
Yeah, I’m well aware I vanished for a few days. Allow me some leniency, I was at the beach with close friends trying to forget about the fact that on Wednesday I’m having major spinal surgery that will leave me forever changed.
So it’s time, I guess, to say what I have to say. To say what I’ve been putting off saying.
As of Wednesday, I will not be on Tumblr for a long while. I will probably be vacant from Deviantart as well, and I do not know how soon or late I will return. It is possible that it will be many weeks before I am online again. This is a personal choice that I must make in order to focus on recovering. Unlike before in my life where my medical state was merely an irksome detail and not a major dilemma, my world now revolves around how active I am in my own recovery. If I fail to recover, I could end up with severely weakened leg muscles, which could lead to paralysis. If I fail to recover, I could loose the ability to function on my own, to walk without assistance, to shower, to eat, to live without constant interference. To someone as independent as me, the thought of dependancy makes my blood run cold. I would rather die than be dependent.
I’ve made many wonderful friends online. You all know who you are, and our personal relationships will not change with my vacancy. I cannot wait to return, and hear all your exciting new stories. It will be wonderful to catch up as soon as I can. I know that a few people are going to be asking about my personal state, and wanting to know how my recovery is going while I am away. The person to ask is Psychoheidi, who will have my mother and my best friends phone number. She will be able to text/call them and get updates.
As for the Cry of the South, as if anyone cares, Sekah will be keeping the website running in my absence.
It has been a pleasure, it has been a privilege. I shall do what I must, and return when I can.
Until then, gentlemen.