~Ch.6 Tell Me~
While we were walking, there was an awkward silence between us four. I didn't want to have to keep on walking like this, not talking to one another. I wanted to say something, but I couldn't think of what to say. Soon, we all stopped nearby a forest and we all looked at each other. I gulped and was just about to say something, but Kei started to talk first.
"Yuki put your backpack down. It's time to start training with your Atsuko," Kei instructed me. I dropped my backpack on the ground and unsheathed my sword.
"It's already time, Kei? I thought we would stop at a village first," Ushio said.
"No, I would suggest staying away from a village while we're training Yuki."
"I see… I know that this question is off-topic, but why didn't we bring Shippo with us?" Satoshi asked.
"Oh, it's because he's become a master at his demon examination. He decided to teach others like him to become a stronger demon than they once were. At least that's what I heard from my mother. Now, Yuki, try to attack me with your sword."
I looked at Kei in bewilderment, but slashed diagonally at him. Once I did that, I saw a fire that escaped from the blade and almost hit Kei. Luckily, he dodged just in time to not be hit with flames. I just looked at my sword in astonishment, while the others looked in slight awe.
"Not bad, Yuki. I see that those lessons of self-defense have paid off," Kei praised me.
"Of course they would've! I'm not gonna be a burden on you guys, so you have nothing to worry about, okay?" I said being brave.
"Don't be ridiculous. As long as you have that Sacred Jewel inside your stomach, we'll be looking out for you too. So, don't act all brave for us, and especially for you, got it?"
"…whatever! Let's keep training, okay?"
Kei looked at me with concern, but shrugged it off. I slashed my sword again at him and blue flames emerged from within Atsuko. I was confused, but Kei dodged them once again. He instructed me to come at him one more time and I did. The same blue flames came out and went toward Kei. He dodged them again, but Kei looked at me with worry.
"Are you okay, Yuki?" Kei asked me.
"I'm fine, Kei. Now, can we go to the next village?" I asked him.
Kei just nodded and all of us went to the next village. But before we could do that, we had to get through a forest in order to be in the village. I noticed that Ushio and Satoshi started discussing on how to find this Akuma person I keep talking about. I just walked slightly behind Kei, who was leading all of us to the next village.
I didn't notice this before, but Kei started to hasten his pace. I wondered why, but me, Satoshi, and Ushio caught up with his pace. While we were walking, I looked up at the sky and noticed that it was starting to turn to sunset. Kei started to quicken his pace again, but this time we couldn't catch up with him. Thankfully though, we didn't need to. We were already at the village.
There were hardly any villagers, so the villagers that were here had us stay at a vacant house. Kei instructed Satoshi to start a fire in the middle of the room, since there was no such thing as fireplaces yet. When he instructed Satoshi to do this, Kei left the house.
"Hey, what's up with Kei? Do you guys know?" I asked Satoshi and Ushio.
"You mean you don't know?" Ushio asked me with a little shock.
"Know what? What are you talking about? If you mean that Kei is a demon, I know that."
"He's a half-demon, Yuki. Just like Inuyasha, he turns human on a certain date. But unlike Inuyasha, he turns into a demon under the full moon," Satoshi informed me.
"Why the hell didn't he tell me?"
"Why don't you ask him yourself?" Ushio nicely suggested.
I nodded and left the house. I looked around and decided to check the back of the house. I soon saw Kei in the full moon's view. But the difference was that he had charcoal black hair that ended at the shoulder blades. The dog ears weren't there and neither were his long nails. His eyes weren't chocolate brown, but they were instead fiercely golden.
Kei looked up at me and I thought I saw his eyes widen slightly at my appearance. I walked toward him and sat beside him, against the outer house walls. I looked up at the moon, and I could feel the eyes of Kei glaring at me. I knew I walked into an awkward situation, but I was planning on breaking this useless silence.
"Why didn't you tell me that you turn into a human under the full moon?" I asked him.
"Why do you think so?" Kei asked me.
"You were too stubborn to admit this… Were you hoping to become a full demon?"
"Maybe…I'm still not sure yet. Now, why are you so intent on protecting all of us? We can clearly protect ourselves, if you can't see that."
"I know that you guys can protect yourselves."
"Then why keep on saying that you're a burden towards us? You are not a burden in the slightest!"
"I couldn't protect my older brother, okay!"
"…why did you tell my mother you had no siblings? Don't ask how I know, because you know the answer to that question."
"I don't even know myself…now I feel really bad on lying about having a brother…Hikaru…"
I brought my knees toward my chest and rested my head upon them. I explained about what happened to Hikaru. On the way to school when I was 15 and Hikaru being 18, we were walking across the street. I was soon being pushed out of the way when Hikaru got hit by car. When he was transferred to the hospital, I heard from the doctors that he might not make it. That's when I jumped to conclusions and thought of him to be dead.
Now it's been a year later and I'm still fully intent that Hikaru isn't alive today. All this time I've believed that the accident was my fault. No matter what anyone said, I still felt guilty. My train of thought was lost when I felt someone pulling me towards them. I looked up to find Kei holding me.
"K-Kei…what are you…?" I asked awkwardly.
"…none of this is your fault, Yuki. Don't feel guilty anymore, got it?" Kei said to me while looking away.
"Kei…thank you. You'll be a good big brother…"
"W-What are you talking about? Hey, Yuki, wake up! Tell me what you mean by me being an older brother!"