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16 August 2006 @ 07:15 pm
 
For: magetastic who wanted Kurogane, Fay and Tomoyo
Author: ekas
Title: A Different Kind of Translator
Rating: PG
Word Count: 3071
Characters: Kurogane, Tomoyo, Fay, Souma, Mokona, mentions of Souma/Kendeppa/Tomoyo
Summary: They need her. She's the only one who can help them understand each other.
Warning: Spoilers for chapter 125.




As he made the final interdimensional journey back to Nihon, the blonde vampire clinging to his arm as if he was afraid they might be separated at the most crucial moment of their journey, he wondered how things would be different when he arrived back in his home country with a permanent companion by his side. How much of what had happened to him did Tomoyo already know, and how much had she told Souma? Would the two who had meant the most to him before he went away accept the strange man Kurogane had agreed to spend the rest of his life with? If the three of them didn’t get along, he supposed he would have to say goodbye to Souma and Tomoyo since he very well could not leave Fay until he was dead. The mage clung tighter to his arm and smiled up at him. Kurogane realized the man must be worrying about the same things, though he figured it was probably worse for the thin blonde since he would “rather do anything than be the cause of more suffering for Kuro-rin.”

On impulse, his free hand reached up and tangled itself into the back of the blonde locks even though the man had already eaten and wouldn’t need to feed again until at least several hours after their arrival. The children had gotten used to the new unidentifiable status of their older companions relationship, so he figured Tomoyo would be able to as well. As far as Souma was concerned, it was none of the old hag’s business what he did with his personal life. If he wanted to be vampire feed, he would do it regardless of what she thought.

He braced himself for the landing since Mokona still had never gotten the hang of those and cradled Fay’s body against his even though he knew vampire flesh was much more suitable to face the impact than his own was.

“Kurogane-san!” That was Souma who probably had nothing else to say from the shock of seeing the white bundle that landed on top of him.

“Kurogane! Still so reckless I see. You’ve just broken one of my older sister’s favorite statues.” That would have been the princess, chastising him already before he even had a chance to stand on home soil again.

“Not even a ‘welcome home’ first?” he growled as he pulled a piece of porcelain out of his arm. Damn pork bun could have gotten it right once in its lifetime. At least the mage had the decency to crawl off him so he could stand.

“Oh, where are my manners. Welcome home, Fay-san,” she said, approaching the blonde and bowing to him in greeting.

“Pleased to meet you, Tomoyo-hime.” He returned the bow though Kurogane noticed he kept his eyes mostly on him. While Tomoyo went through all the formalities of welcoming him to the country and granting him the same rights as any citizen, Fay kept his gaze riveted on Kurogane, every so often licking his lips. The ninja was surprised Tomoyo didn’t comment on it, and he wondered himself why Fay was looking at him like a tiger watched a wounded deer.

“Really, Kuro-tan, it isn’t nice to tease people like this,” he whimpered as soon as Tomoyo was finished. He suddenly realized what the man’s problem was; that statue had really done some damage. It was like shoving a man’s favorite food under his nose and then forbidding him to eat. Fay whimpered as he took a step closer to Kurogane, and his eyes were doing the cat thing again.

“Tomoyo-himesama, what is that thing?” Souma asked as Fay latched happily onto Kurogane’s arm, closing his eyes and purring in contentment.

“Oh, it’s just Kurogane’s wife,” Tomoyo told her matter-of-factly. Kurogane glowered at her.

Souma eloquently raised an eyebrow. “It looks more like a leech to me.” Kurogane had thought Souma would have understood a little better since she had dealt with countless demons in battle.

Wait a second. Why wasn’t she trying to protect him from the demon-like creature sucking his blood?

“Yes, I suppose Fay can be an emotional leech at times.” Apparently Tomoyo had missed the fact that the blonde was literally drinking his blood or she just did not care, and he wondered what she could be plotting with that type of glint in her eyes. She eagerly clasped her hands together. “I’ll get started on the wedding kimono right now.”

He suddenly felt very faint, and he wasn’t sure if it was caused by the blonde drinking his blood or fear of what Tomoyo was plotting. “Whose wedding?” he croaked though he was fairly certain he wasn’t going to like the answer.

“Yours and Fay’s, of course,” and she stared at him as if he was a simpleton. He really hated it when she looked at him like that. “I know you two are practically married anyway, all things considered, but I think a formal ceremony would be nice.” Her eyes sparkled. “Besides, it gives me the perfect opportunity to make you two beautiful matching kimono! Come along, Souma.” She practically dragged the other ninja with her.

“That’s enough,” he ordered the man who was sill attached to his arm. Fay reluctantly pulled away with a few final licks to Kurogane’s arm, partially to heal the wound, but Kurogane figured it was mostly to get as much blood as he possibly could.

“Did Tomoyo-chan just say she was going to marry us?” he asked, staring after the spot where the princess had disappeared. “I think it’s a great idea,” he said solemnly. Kurogane was glad the man wasn’t lying about being happy about everything anymore, but he could hardly see how this was a matter to be taken seriously. A small part of him wanted the man to only be teasing him in his seriousness, but ever since he had become completely dependent on Kurogane he had done far less teasing and much more lying.

“I don’t think it will happen,” he said though for some reason it pained him to tell him that. Not that he wanted to be married to the blonde, but he seemed disappointed whenever Kurogane informed him of that. “Her sister will most likely never allow it.” Fay gave a sad smile and glanced around the courtyard. Kurogane thought perhaps he was studying everything and trying to figure out what its place was in this world.

“Come on,” he said, brushing the man’s elbow lightly with his fingertips. “I’ll show you around.”

“Show Mokona around too!” the little white pork bun called, jumping in a circle around them.

“What the hell are you still doing here?!” Kurogane growled, trying to catch the damn thing so he could shove it through the nearest dimensional hole.

“Yuuko says I’m to stay with you two so Fai-mommy and Kurogane-daddy won’t be depressed since your other two children left you.” Mokona bounced happily into Fay’s arms, and the mage giggled, snuggling it close. “Besides, Fay doesn’t know Japanese, so I’ll work as his translator as well as child.” Kurogane decided to let it go; Fay seemed to be happy enough with the thing still there.

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

“You wanted to see me, Tomoyo-hime?” Fai asked as he stepped into the room the maid had showed him to.

“Yes, please, sit,” she said, indicating a spot across from her. It was the only bare spot on the floor; the rest was covered with silk fabrics of all different hues. He tried not to step on them as he made his way gingerly across the room. “And please call me Tomoyo-chan,” she insisted as he sat down. “I know Kurogane very well, but you I just met, so I wanted to look at some fabric choices with you present.” Which explained the material sprawled all over the room. Kurogane had never told him about this hobby of Tomoyo’s.

“For the kimono?” he asked, looking at the deep scarlet of the fabric next to him.

“I was thinking of that color for the design on Kurogane’s,” she told him, startling him out of his reverie.

“It’s a good color,” smiling gently at her, doing his best not to expose his fangs. “But I’m not entirely sure he will wear it. He seems to believe your sister will not allow it.”

“Oh, nonsense,” she told him, looking around at some of the colors immediately surrounding her. “Kendeppa’s been trying to marry Souma for years.”

“Why hasn’t that worked out?” he asked, figuring the same obstacles between an Empress and her love would be the same obstacles for him and Kurogane.

“Kendeppa made the mistake of giving Souma to me when I was very young, and I absolutely refuse to give her back. Ohohoho!” She pulled out her fan to laugh behind.

“Is that so?” He was rather glad Tomoyo was on his side in this instance; he wasn’t sure if he would be able to handle her as a rival.

“I think this shade of blue provides both the best match with your eyes and the perfect contrast to the red in Kurogane’s,” she said as she tucked the fan back into her kimono. “I think it’s a good theme to go with for you two. A perfect contrast creates balance. I know you two have not always felt the same about some things. I imagine you two feel very differently about my wedding plans as well.” She smiled gently at him, encouraging him to speak.

“I don’t think Kuro-sama is too pleased with the idea. The arrangement we have is unofficial, and I think Kurotan is comfortable with that.” At least, he hoped that was the reason Kurogane seemed to be uncomfortable with Tomoyo marrying them and not because he was starting to rethink and possibly regret his earlier decisions. Fay always had his own inhibitions about the situation, but he wasn’t sure how he would ever face the ninja again if he was starting to think differently.

“Fay-san, how do you feel about the wedding plans?”

Fay looked back at the fabric that reminded him so much of Kurogane’s eyes. “Before, when we were traveling with the children to places we had never been to before, people always accepted me at Kurogane’s side as part of that tourist group. But… this is Kurogane’s home country, and people won’t accept me as easily here, especially with the vampire thing. I just want to have a place in this world.”

“I understand,” and Tomoyo reached over to place her hand gently over his. “I will speak to Kurogane. I’m sure he will understand in time. But first, how do you feel about his shade of silver with this black?” she asked, holding up the two fabrics in question.

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

“Kuro-seisan?” he heard someone ask from right beside him knowing perfectly well who it was since only one person in the universe would refer to him as dinner. He rolled over to see what the blonde wanted. Fay hadn’t been in the room when he had entered to go to sleep, and he had been hoping the idiot would go straight to bed whenever he finally returned. “I haven’t seen you all day,” the man said, face hidden in the darkness.

“You hungry?” and without waiting for an answer he loosened the collar of his sleeping robe.

He felt the blonde tense beside him and for an instant he really wished it was light outside so he could see his face. “Is there something else?” he asked, and he heard the rustling of fabric as the man fidgeted beside him.

“No, I was hungry, that’s all,” he said, before lowering his fangs to Kurogane’s throat. He gasped at the initial prick, but the pain was soon replaced by the indescribable pleasure that only came from sustaining someone else’s life. Eventually, the man pulled away with a small lick to the wound and collapsed on the futon next to him. “Hey.” He grunted in response, blood loss nicely speeding up the process of falling back asleep. “Is it… alright… that I’m here?”

Kurogane rolled back over to his side away from the mage and buried his face against his pillow. “We’ve shared a room before. Besides, this is just easier if you need an emergency feeding in the middle of the night.” He heard the man sigh and felt the blanket shift, presumably because the man moved slightly away from him. His back suddenly felt much colder.

“Goodnight, Kuro-sama,” the man told him, and Kurogane could have sworn there was a sigh in the man’s voice.

He was getting frustrated, but sleep kept his anger in check. He knew something else was bothering the man, but the ninja knew he was not going to answer him truthfully if asked. Maybe in the morning the mage would tell him what was bothering him though he highly doubted it. Sometimes he thought life was much simpler before they had met the vampires, but he knew Fay had actually opened up to him since then. Earlier he would have hid his discomfort behind a smile, but Kurogane was willing to bet anyone who had been listening to their conversation would have been able to tell he had something completely different on his mind. He rolled back to his other side and placed one hand gently on the man’s back, feeling the steady rise and fall of his breathing. He must have already fallen asleep on a full stomach. “Goodnight,” he muttered, unsure if the man heard him, but he supposed it didn’t really matter.

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

Kurogane, I need to talk to you,” Tomoyo said as she entered his room without permission. She made sure her expression said he was going to listen to her or else he would suffer the consequences. It was the first time she had gone into his room, and she made a quick survey as she crossed the room to sit across from him. She instantly labeled it as decidedly boring and hoped Fay would be able to bring a little more life into it.

He glared at her; she ignored it. “Fay-san says you are uncomfortable about the wedding situation,” she told him, pulling out her fan and fanning herself. She wanted it nearby in case she needed to use it.

“It’s weird,” he said as he went back to cleaning his sword.

“And becoming vampire fodder for someone you do not love enough to bind yourself to them for life in an officially acknowledged ceremony is not weird?” she asked delicately. Kurogane stopped polishing his sword and lowered it to the ground with a grunt. “Ohohohohohoho! I see you are still as shy as ever.”

“That was different,” he replied gruffly, looking at everything in the room except her. She hoped he was realizing there was nothing in his room to look at. “I was trying to save his life, to protect him.”

Ah, yes, she had nearly forgotten about his protection complex. “I thought you would have learned by now that people need protection from other harms than those that are physical,” and she whacked him on the head with her fan. “I think he may need your strength and protection more now than he did when he was dying. He feels lost and needs your guidance. Besides, I think he cares very deeply about you.” She knew she was delving into dangerous territory with the ninja, and he was starting to blush, but she also knew that he needed to hear it. “He also holds your opinion of him very highly. What you think about his place in this world.”

“He told you all this?” he asked, and she saw a flicker of hurt and disappointment in his eyes. “Not in so many words. He told me he wanted to know his place in this world. I deduced the rest.”

He didn’t respond, and she gave him a few moments alone with his thoughts. But she didn’t have all day, and neither did Fay. “Face it, Kurogane. Reading other people has never been your strong suit, and you’re not exactly the easiest person to read. It’s no wonder the two of you have so many communication problems.”

“Which is exactly why we need your help.” Whatever else she had been thinking about saying left her mind at that point and she stared at him in puzzlement. “We cannot survive together through this on our own. We need someone who cares equally about both of us to help us understand each other.”

She was so amazed he was actually asking her for help that for a moment she was unsure of how to respond. Then again, she had sent him on his journey so he could learn the true meaning of his strength. She smiled. “I’ll be glad to assist the two of you in any way I can. My first piece of advice to you, Kuro-myu,” she giggled and Kurogane scowled at her, “is to go along happily with my wedding plans for the two of you.” She sighed dreamily and imagined them wearing her finished kimono. “And, I suggest you do something that shows him he is welcome here in Nihon.”

“And how do you propose I do that?”

“I’m sure you will think of something clever. Just remember he only wants to make you happy.” Maybe she was making that part up, but she figured it could not do the two of them any harm.

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

“Kuro-sama, I didn’t see you at all again today,” Fay said when he snuck into the room early in the evening.

“Sorry. I needed to be alone to think,” which was all he had done after Tomoyo had left him. “Are you hungry?”

“A little,” Fay admitted, and he lowered his mouth closer to Kurogane. “Are you sure this is okay?”

He buried his hand in the blonde locks on the back of the mage’s head and pulled him closer. “Yeah, it’s okay,” he told him as sharp fangs pierced his flesh. He kept his hand in Fay’s hair as the man fed, trying to work out what the best thing was to say. Apparently, things weren’t as difficult as he always imagined them to be. They just needed Tomoyo. “Tomorrow, would you like to go for a walk with me and see a bit of the countryside?”

 
 
Current Mood: accomplishedaccomplished
 
 
 
the uninformed: imagineuninformed on August 17th, 2006 03:53 am (UTC)
he replied gruffly, looking at everything in the room except her. She hoped he was realizing there was nothing in his room to look at

Man, I love Tomoyo ^_^ She makes a terrific relationship counsellor. And she's so sweet with Fai, but so pushy with Kurogane ^_^
E'ka: TomoyoKendeppaekas on August 18th, 2006 04:53 pm (UTC)
I think Tomoyo is quickly becomming one of my favorite characters to write.

I still need to do her commentary on the past three chapters of Tsubasa... Stupid work put me really far behind.

I love her so much. ^.^
paper_foxpaper_fox on August 17th, 2006 05:22 am (UTC)
Gah, Kurogane and Fai would need a relationship counselor. Neither of them are very good at sharing their thoughts, and I can't imagine any relationship they share would be all smooth sailing. I like how you established Tomoyo's role in their relationship. It definitely seems like something she would do.
Tongaritongari_0104721 on August 17th, 2006 05:10 pm (UTC)
Aw, that's such a great story! I loved the humor sprinkled in between the romance, and I really liked how you portrayed Tomoyo. She would totally do that!
azure_chan: seme faiazure_chan on August 17th, 2006 11:22 pm (UTC)
So sweet, and it makes me want more.^_^lol
Umidori: yay Tsubasa!umidori on September 4th, 2006 10:08 pm (UTC)
*speechless* This fic manages to push so many of my buttons! I absolutely loved it. Tomoyo/Souma/Kendappa must be the world's most fascinating OT3, since I love all three of them very much. You do Tomoyo wonderfully - her giddyness at the prospect of wedding kimono, her matter-of-fact acceptance of Fay as Kurorin's wife, her quiet disapproval of Kuro's bare room, her perceptiveness and how perfect a relationship councellor she makes - all of these are why I love Tomoyo. Bits of her felt somewhat OOC to me - like thwapping Kuro with her fan, which seemed too violent for her since she ensures attention through other means, or like declining to return Souma to Kendappa, which I think she would have done since she seems to have no intention of marrying Souma herself. But I like the direction in which you've changed Tomoyo - that different temperament makes for an interesting and likable character too.
And Fay and Kuro taking Mokona to Nihon with them and adopting it as a child is one of my secret hopes for Tsubasa's ending ^^
And Tomoyo meddling with Fay and Kuro's relationship is one of them as well. She does that so well, doesn't she? ^^