AN: And now the conclusion to XxxHOLIC: A Midsummer Night's Dream.
Chapter 4: The Collector
Watanuki let the door shut behind him, finding himself outside in a quiet rice field without the rice and bright stars, faraway mountains and a few willow trees in front of him. The forest was some way off and the sound of crickets echoed through the night, calming him somewhat.
Surprisingly, he was completely dressed in his school uniform and jacket which he didn't put on before leaving the room.
He stepped back into the field and looked back, now realizing that someone actually painted the mountains onto the walls of the enormous room, a rather cool optical illusion had it been under different circumstances. The boy glanced up at the moon and found the moon rabbit making rice cakes on its mortar. He looked in the other direction and found Saturn and Mars hanging in the other corner.
He started walking down the path in front of him, passing between a few ponds and walking past the willow trees. The sounds of crickets and frogs filled the air. The moon rabbit started to move, pounding rice far above his head as he gazed at the stars admiring the constellations that were drawn as the stars and outlined into the shapes they represented.
Cygnus' cross was connected, but the outline showed the swan, flying in the stars. There was Sagittarius, Scorpio, Crux, Gemini, Capricorn and others that Watanuki didn't recognize, but it didn't matter. He had found a door. The boy went through to a different room.
This room made him feel incredibly small. It was a replica of the parlor room, but all the furniture seemed to be made for giants. As he walked underneath the table, he knew that time was passing even as he moved into the next room.
The next room appeared to be outside again, with only one path and it was surrounded by hundreds of Jizo statues, all covered in moss and staring at the seer as he passed them. He could hear chanting too, indiscernible words floating around his head. The room after that was a humongous sea of water and innumerable rowboats.
Some were wrecked and sinking, while others were in good condition. This room was lit only by a distant magenta light that glowed around a rickety shanty that sat by the pier he was walking on. The room after was filled with giant drinking birds. There were even some on the ceiling.
He somehow remembered what he had been worried about earlier and started calling for his wayward friend.
"Domeki!" He hollered, putting his hand up to cup his mouth. "Where are you? This isn't funny!" He kept calling through each room he entered, looking high and low for his missing friend. That is, until his path was halted. He'd entered a room lit by street lamps with hundreds of rooms in it, all spiraling up high into the darkness of the mansion.
The stairs leading up alternated with each door, switching from red stone to blue-black every other one. Where Watanuki was standing at the bottom, there was a structure that looked like something a cathedral would have.
There were Victorian people standing on two spinning platforms, one atop the other. Well, they weren't people, but instead life-sized statues made to look like people. Every single one of them were in different poses. Some were dancing, others singing, a few were laughing, but none looked very happy, not even those that were smiling.
"There's something really strange about this place," the seer whispered to himself, looking at the statues. "Something very strange." He tore his eyes away from the statues and looked at the first door on the huge spiral staircase. It was a blue-black stone alcove with an odd stone place in the floor in front of the door.
On the grey stone, someone had etched two marks. They looked like a question mark and its y-axis reflection without the dot. Watanuki suspected a trap and so creeped around it just incase something nasty activated. He was standing in front of the door now, with only one question one his mind.
"What's in there?" He asked, grabbing the knob and opening the door. The door opened with a creak and he peeked in.
The room was small widthwise, but extended farther back than the seer a\had thought. However, the interesting bit was what was inside. Lining the walls, floor and ceiling were glass cases held in place by bars and supports and inside the softly lit cases were antennae.
"It looks like a butterfly collection!" he exclaimed, walking up to get a closer look. "Sort of." Instead of beautiful wings, whoever had collected these specimens had ripped the bodies apart and kept the heads.
He gulped, creeped out that someone would collect thousands of rare insects just for their heads and antennae. Watanuki wanted to get out of here, that feeling of being watched crawling up his spine again. He took a step back, his hands shaking, ready to run when something grabbed his shoulder. He did the understandable thing and screamed.
"AAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!" He screamed out as he whirled away from whatever had touched him at a high speed. But instead of a spirit, it was Domeki.
"Oh…it's you, Watanuki," the archer stated sarcastically. Watanuki sank to the floor, relieved.
"Yes, it's me!" He leapt to his feet and growled at his friend. "I've been wandering around this stupid place all night looking for you and Yuuko!"
"You were worried about us?" Domeki asked giving the boy a blank look.
"I was a little freaked out," he said. "I just went to sleep and when I woke up you were gone. Plus, the whole room had been changed around, so I started wandering around looking for you and I just ended up here. Also, Doreiku's warning to Harry has been in my mind all night."
"So did I. And I left my room to look for you," Domeki agreed. "It's strange, but I have a feeling that we were led here somehow. Didn't Doreiku also call Harry a bit of a trouble magnet?"
Watanuki nodded, "Yeah, I think we should find Yuuko and those two. Yuuko will at least know what to do and Doreiku as we've seen is someone that not even spirits would want to mess with if their intelligent." They left the butterfly antennae room.
There was no other way out of the room than the way they'd came, so Watanuki and Domeki went into the next room. It was in a red stone alcove and the stone on the floor had five horizontal lines with little X's on them. They went inside and it was a room full of barbed wires, some strung out on fences, and others coiled up.
"Fences?" The seer asked to no one.
"Barbwire barricades," Domeki answered.
"Weirder and weirder," Watanuki said, looking around. "First a room full of butterfly antennae and now a barbed wire fence collection? What's next?" he asked in trepidation.
The next stone was etched with an image of a belt or a collar that was buckled, and inside that purple lit room were dog collars of all shapes and sizes hanging on the walls and ceiling. Most of them had spikes or studs, but some were plain and just had buckles.
"Must be the collar room," Watanuki noted.
"What do you think, Watanuki?" Domeki asked, pointing to a collar with diamonds on it. "Get that for Yuuko?"
"If the situation was better, that would be funny. Until we gave it to her at least," Watanuki answered. Both boys winced. Yuuko was very powerful.
The next collection room was full of birdcages lit by warm yellow lights. Some were very simple, others extremely ornate. The room after that was hardly lit at all and contained different kinds of hunting traps that looked extremely menacing in the dark.
The collection room after that was full of carnivorous plants and Watanuki did not want to step too far inside this one. There were rooms of canes, rocks that looked like faces, chains, metronomes, test tube sets, Japanese theater and festival masks, saws and knives, pot lids, coat hooks, traffic lights… and the rooms extended up what seemed like for eternity and they still hadn't found an exit.
The next collection room was full of spoons, all lining the walls and ceiling, lit by a yellow light that accented the gold walls. Watanuki had never seen this collection before, but something was familiar.
"Spoons?" He mused, looking at the wall. Domeki wandered further into the room.
The seer swept his eyes over a section of wall, his eye catching on one in particular. Had he not been standing in that exact spot, he would have missed it, but this silver spoon stuck out. With a red jewel on a fat handle and a three-flower design, it was familiar. "Hey…wait…I know this one." He thought back and remembered, it was from the dinner he had not eaten. "It's from dinner earlier."
"Oi, Watanuki. Come here," Domeki called. The boy wandered over and gaped at the painting hanging there. It was White Hair!
"Hey! That looks like him!" Watanuki pointed at the painting, his raised hand trembling. "The man who disappeared after dinner. Why would there be a picture of him hanging up in here?" He never got his answer for Red and Suit (without the suit but in a yukata) showed up behind him and started talking.
"Looks like you two couldn't sleep any better than we could, huh?" Suit asked, rubbing one of his shoulders. Watanuki and Domeki both turned around. "Those beds are uncomfortable, aren't they?"
"Ha!" Red scoffed. "You were just trying to find our host before anyone else did so you could suck up to him."
"Shut up, you little rat!" Suit spun on Red. "I could say the same thing about you anyway!"
"You're just all worked up because I've got you figured out!" Red snapped.
"This really isn't the best time to argue!" Watanuki interrupted. "Don't you realize that this guy has us trapped in here?"
"Yeah, so what if he does?" Suit replied, completely uncaring.
"I'll complete my collection if it means staying here the rest of my life!" Red remarked, his voice becoming insane, his face stretching into a strained smile with wide eyes. He started walking out, leaving everyone else behind.
"I'm not going to let anyone out do me!" Suit vowed, his own face becoming a little crazy as he followed Red out the door.
"Man, those two are weird," Watanuki sighed.
"You know, in this place," Domeki stared to say, "I think we're considered the weird ones."
"Then let's go!" Watanuki turned to his archer friend, "We just need to find Yuuko and get out of here! Doreiku and Harry as well!"
Just then, a bell tolled outside the room. Watanuki and Domeki ran to the door and looked down, finding that the bell was sounding from far below them.
The bell was signaling something that was not the hour…it was forbidding and ominous to the seer, but he found himself running down the spiral room's stairs with Domeki. Red and Suit were running to catch up with them as they had run up several spirals to try and outdo each other.
As they ran, the strange structure with the statues began to move, the two platforms spinning in time to the music it started to play. It acted like a giant music box! Domeki reached the last two rooms or so before the bottom floor and jumped off the side. Watanuki followed, leaving the two crazy collectors behind a bit.
The archer and the seer ran to the front of the giant music box and watched as the laughing people statues turned and rotated. Red and Suit ran down the last few stairs as the music box slowed and stopped. The platforms came to a rest on a news boy. As the music ended, the bottom of the statue's satchel fell open and four numbered pieces of paper fell out onto the floor.
"Move it!" Red rudely pushed Domeki out of the way to get to the notes.
"Let me see those!" Suit did the exact same thing with Watanuki, kneeling down to grab two notes before Red could take them all. Both boys didn't say anything, now knowing why Doreiku hadn't liked these two from the get go. "By leaving the rooms assigned to you, you have all broken…the rules…' What the-?" He started to read. "As punishment, I have devised a game in which all of you shall participate."
"Hide and seek," Red continued, reading the two notes he had aloud. "'If you find me within ten minutes that means you win. If you don't find me you lose. Win and we give you what you came here for, lose and you'll have to play another game. Let's begin.' What going on?!"
The sound of fingers snapping dunked the four of them in darkness, the street lamps shutting off as well. Watanuki's heart sunk. They couldn't lose…not here! Losing meant anything in a place like this, even death!
The room was dark above them and beyond where they were standing, seemingly endless, the only light was right under their feet and that wasn't near enough to illuminate the room. There was a strange rumbling sound above them too, like a mechanism turning and the parts were making clicking and rolling noises. Trapped in this new and dangerous room, Suit and Red started looking around for an exit by instinct, and Watanuki looked as well… only he looked up.
Messing with our heads-!" Red hissed, looking for an escape. "Screw this! I'm getting out of here!"
"The ceiling-!" Watanuki yelled as the entire thing came low enough to be lit up. It was going to crush them all flat if they didn't get out!
"What is this?! What do we do?!" Suit growled out, stomping like a little child. Then the entire room lit up dimly, revealing a full-size door on one side. Red and Suit ran to it, both trying to pull open the now seemingly locked door, arguing and shoving and kicking the entire time they did it. With the full-size door being occupied by two people Watanuki never wanted to see again or mess with, they were stuck. Those two men were crazy enough to hurt a bystander.
Domeki was plenty observant enough though and had found another door. Child-sized.
"Watanuki," the archer called. The seer flipped around and ran at him when he saw the new exit. They knelt down and looked at the grimy door. Watanuki wiped away the dust and found the same Celtic knot that was on the gate and on the key to the house and in his dream.
"I know this pattern! I saw it in my dream!" He exclaimed. "I know! We need Yuuko's key!" He frisked his pockets. "Now…. if only we had it…. but that would be too convenient wouldn't it?" With my luck, Yuuko's still got the key and we're now dead. "Oh, here it is!" He yanked the key out of his pocket and put it in the lock and turned it.
"Did she know this would happen?!" Watanuki asked. It didn't budge. "It won't open!"
"Give it here," Domeki took the key. Watanuki glanced back at the other two. They were still struggling with the door, which was now blocked by the lowering ceiling. The key turned and the small door opened just as the ceiling started to press on it. "Done, hurry," Domeki ordered, crawling through.
Watanuki yanked the key out as the ceiling bent and splintered the door. He wasted precious second protecting himself. The ceiling was now brushing his hair, ready to crush him, but he threw himself through, the sounds of the other two screaming suddenly getting cut of behind him as the ceiling hit the floor with a crash.
Both boys looked at the blocked doorway, barely having escaped death by crushing and the game had just started! Watanuki looked around the new room. This place looked like the attic from his dream.
The bookshelf was full of books and knick-knacks and stuffed animals. Another was filled with more books and a few bottles of wine, saké and a bottle of old rum. The single window with the curtains that the little girl had hid behind were there as well, even the stacked table and chairs, all in color.
"This place was in my dream too!" He breathed out, as he got over his terror, and walked towards the window.
"Looks like this place has been gathering dust for decades," Domeki remarked, standing up and running his fingers across a shelf and then blowing a cloud of dust off of his hands. Watanuki found a small easel in the corner that seemed to be holding a painting.
He pulled of the cloth and stared at the little brunette girl in the pink dress, depicted, sitting on that swing outside the mansion. She was even holding her bean bags.
"It's that girl!" He gasped. Domeki looked at the painting.
"Do you know her or something?"
"I've seen her a couple of times since we've been here. I bet you that she's the one that's got us locked up in this mansion!" Watanuki went to the window and opened it with a sickening creak. "We need to hurry! We don't have much time! We have to find the girl and get Yuuko and the others back from her and then get out of here and never come back! Now let's get going!"
He leapt out of the window into a sewer-like hallway done in brick and Domeki followed, running just a step behind.
"How much time is left?" Watanuki inquired.
"Don't know," Domeki answered. Then a bell tolled and writing appeared on the floor in front of them.
Four minutes left, it read.
"I said I had a bad feeling about this place!" Watanuki growled. "But did anyone listen to me besides Doreiku? No! There is no way that we're going to find them in four minutes in this huge mansion!"
They ran through that Paris catacomb room, then the cathedral catwalk room, then the hallway with the bamboo stalks on one side and the paneled doors on the other. More writing appeared on the paper windows, moving with the two boys as the bell sounded again.
Three minutes left, it read.
"So, are we running to anywhere in particular now?" Domeki asked, keeping pace with the seer.
"Nope," he replied. "All I know is that we can't stop!" They then were running through a grey stone hallway with red flowers in little alcoves, opening the dark wood doors when they ran across them. The next door opened into a dimly lit hallway with wood floors and white walls and more writing appeared along with a tolling bell.
Two minutes left, it said.
"Aw, damnit!" Watanuki hollered.
"A dead end," Domeki called out as the hallway stopped. But Watanuki saw a tiny little opening that they could crawl through. They got through it, squeezing out and standing up in a room with a crooked catwalk that rested floors and floors above the bottom level, the Japanese doors lit up.
"Wait, something's strange here…. this place looks familiar!" Watanuki recalled, then the next room was the first hallway they'd ever walked through. "We're right back where we started!" He cried in dismay, turning around, Domeki following.
The next room was the one with the shrine and the long stairs down into the cathedral catwalk that they'd been through. The rain had stopped and the night sky above them was filled with starts, the sutras on the walls illuminated by the light.
"We're running in circles here!" Watanuki skidded to a halt, throwing his hands up in defeat and trying to catch his breath. Domeki stopped as well. "So, what do we do now?!" The bell tolled again, writing appearing on the poles holding the walls up.
One-minute left, it read.
"Damnit!" Watanuki hissed again, looking around at all the signs. When he turned toward Domeki, he found himself staring into the dead eyes of the little spirit girl. The spirit grabbed onto Watanuki's shoulders, her mouth moving as if trying to say something. Watanuki screamed in terror.
"What is it? Watanuki?" Domeki asked, starting to panic, "What's wrong?"
Watanuki kept screaming as the spirit pushed him over the edge of the rail, his body dangling upside down as Domeki reached out and caught his foot, trying to pull the seer up before he fell to his death. The rail broke and both boys went tumbling over the side into the black abyss.
The falling stopped after a while and both boys woke up. They weren't splattered and were lying on a brick floor with the sound of waves echoing. Both boys picked themselves up and stared at the door in front of them. It was the only one and looked like the others in the spiral room and it even had its own floor stone.
But unlike the other rooms, this door looked ancient and the wall it was set into had cracking paint. The two walked over to the floor stone. This one was etched with the outline of a person and inside its chest was a little red heart. Whatever it meant, it was a certainty that they had to go through this door, as there were no other exits.
Watanuki reached out and opened the door, walking into what had to be the final room. Whatever happened in here felt like it was going to be the very last trick. The door shut behind them as soon as Domeki stepped through.
The room was dimly lit with the only light illuminating a chair in the center of the room, if you could call it a "center." In reality, the room was shaped like a cross, the walls and ceiling littered with octagonal shapes that were frames of all sizes, and the chair was where the four halls met. And there was a person in that chair.
"So…" A deep voice echoed through the room, "You managed to find me."
"And who exactly are you?!" Watanuki yelled, his patience finally snapping. The man sitting in the chair had white-ash colored hair from what he could see in the light, the ends brushing past his white shirt collar and onto the blue part of his shirt. His legs were crossed and sticking out diagonally from behind the chair, clad in white slacks and socks.
"Uh, who are you talking to?" Domeki asked, seeing only an empty chair when Watanuki was shouting at something out of the ordinary.
"Wait a minute!" It dawned on the seer, "If I'm the only one who can see you, then that means you're-!"
"It is truly amazing the number of things people come to possess during their relatively short lives." The spirit said, ignoring everything that Watanuki had just said. "Of course, there are those among us who amass a great deal of one particular thing."
"I assume that you're talking about those people we call 'collectors.'" A feminine voice said from behind Watanuki and Domeki. The pair turned and found Yuuko standing behind them, gaudy jewelry and all. Doreiku and Harry flanked her on either side and Doreiku looked especially pissed off.
"And the rat shows himself," the silver-eyed teen growled, drawing a scimitar.
"Yuuko! You're alright!" Watanuki shouted with glee, a genuine smile on his face as he found his boss and erstwhile teacher safe and sound.
"I'll have you know that you've been difficult to keep track of. And I wasn't aware that there were two more in your group either." The man said, his eyes sliding over to study Yuuko. Watanuki was too busy being relieved to care about anything he said, although it did confirm his earlier suspicion of being watched and dragged along in the mansion.
"Watanuki here can detect spirits, but no spirit can approach or harm Domeki. And Doreiku and Harry have their own abilities that keep them safe," Yuuko commented as she walked up to two of her charges, "They make a rather effective tool against you, like a blinder or diversion, don't you think?"
"I see it now," the man admitted.
"So," Yuuko went on, "What kind of penalty game do you have planned for us?"
"Allow me to show you…my private collection," the spirit man said ominously, "No one else has ever seen it before." The empty frames on the walls lit up, all holding pictures of people – all ages, genders, and sizes – some smug, some bored looking and some smiling like their photo had been taken for the school yearbook.
"What is this!" Watanuki gasped, looking around at all the faces of people he'd never met before. Except one, and conveniently it was right in front of him again.
"If you look closely, you'll recognize one of the faces," the spirit prompted. And that was the face Watanuki had found familiar. It was White Hair again, and he was nestled between pictures of another man and a woman. "The spoon collector from this evening was chosen to be placed here."
"What?!" Watanuki snapped his head towards the triumphant looking man. Doreiku and Harry both readied their respective weapons. Watanuki didn't know what Harry could do yet, so he was rather doubtful about the young teen's fighting abilities.
"Tonight was a competition," the spirit explained. "I had to determine which of you would be entering my collection."
"That's why you invited all the collectors to your mansion," Yuuko remarked, finally understanding. She crossed her arms as she continued to unravel their host's intentions. "Not to complete their collections, but to add to your own."
"I studied them all evening to assess their quality," the man continued. "Unfortunately, only one was worthy to enter into my grand collection."
"And what happened to the ones you didn't choose!?" Watanuki snarled, pissed that this spirit had toyed with them all evening, picked the one person he liked and probably done away with all the others that didn't meet his standards.
"You're going to have a very unpleasant meeting with someone very powerful by the time I'm done with you, spirit," Doreiku barked out. His aura was released, it was much stronger now and told everyone in it that here was a dragon, and it was pissed.
The spirit ignored him. "They all have a lovely new home inside one of my favorite paintings," The man sighed. It clicked inside the minds of Harry, Watanuki and Domeki. They'd seen that painting, the one that seemed to be a party at the mansion but only held angry or despondent people in it.
"Do you mean the one in the drawing room?!" Watanuki asked.
"You'll find that now it has six more inhabitants than it did earlier," the spirit continued. "Collectors have an unusual attachment to some specific sort of thing – that attachment is something that we describe with the suffix '-holic.' Can you imagine for a moment if one collected souls instead of things?"
"So, what you have here is a collection of collectors," Yuuko finished up. "You became fascinated by their obsession with things and instead of collecting objects, you collected them. Is it enough now? Are you satisfied with these souls or will there be more?" To anyone else, Yuuko sounded calm as she said this, but Watanuki could tell Yuuko was disgusted and irritated. She abhorred killing.
"My collection is incomplete," the spirit answered, acknowledging the outcome of Yuuko's question. "You see…I am still missing the most important piece of all." That didn't sound good to anyone. "I'm afraid that I'll be needing your soul…witch." This last word was hissed, the frustration of keeping track of and capturing Yuuko showing through.
"I'm flattered that you think so highly of me. Unfortunately, I don't collect anything so I wouldn't fit in," Yuuko replied calmly, although somewhat amused.
"On the contrary, as part of your business, you collect people's most prize possessions every day," the man countered. "If that doesn't make one the ultimate collector, then I really couldn't say what does."
"While I've enjoyed your hospitality thus far, I'll have to decline," Yuuko turned down the proposal politely. "Besides, you're the one who's really trapped here." The Dimensional Witch started walking towards the man, intent on doing something, her heels clicking on the floor. At that moment, the man turned around in his swivel chair and held up his hand, snapping his fingers.
The walls exploded, shattering the frames and glass into a million pieces, and sending up clouds of smoke into the air. Watanuki ducked and then saw that the room was gone, replaced by an endless white space and a horde of angry spirits snaking their way towards them.
Yuuko dodged the first spirits and they whirled around to snap at her again. She side stepped and the fangs of the snake-like spirit sank into the floor, destroying the ground where it hit.
"Domeki!" Watanuki shouted to the archer over the howling spirits, "We have to protect Yuuko!"
Unknown to the quintet, the collections housed in the mansion were headed their way. Watanuki got smacked in the face by a male kokeshi doll, knocking him to the ground and Domeki pushed one away from his face and had to brace another against his arm as they surrounded him. Temporarily at least. That was when Harry came into play.
The young wizard snapped his wand out with a shout in Latin, pointing the magical item at the horde of dolls. The floor exploded in a cloud of dust sending the dolls flying in all directions. Watanuki was currently dealing with a drinking bird.
The bird brought its beak down on the spot where he was laying. He somersaulted backwards just in time, the beak of the bird punching a hole in the ground where his pelvis had been seconds before. He screamed as the bird came after him again, punching holes in the ground where his body parts were. He twisted and leapt and screamed again as the bird's neck became flexible and started trying to wrap around him.
The seer twisted and bent into all sorts of shapes to save himself, frustrating the bird. The room was now shaking, starting to fall apart more and more as more collections pushed through the ground to attack them. The man in the chair seemed unaffected though, just smiling as the chaos unfolded around him.
Yuuko was still advancing on him though, the spirits he sent at her missing every time, blowing her hair this way and that but never touching her, she put a hand up and pulled a spirit away from her face. She just brushed some of her wind caught locks behind her ear as if a nice summer breeze had disturbed her and not hissing spirits. The ceiling of the room crumbled around them, huge chunks of rock crashing to the floor but Yuuko and the man just faced each other.
The latter finally got up out of his chair and stood. The drinking bird was still coming after Watanuki but he picked up a chunk of what used to be ceiling and held it up like a shield and the bird embedded its beak into it, now stuck as it tried to free itself. Watanuki smiled in triumph, but the victory didn't last as the bird whipped its head around and dislodge the debris, smacking it into the seer's face and came after him again.
"GAH!" He shouted, both in pain and in fear. The bird dropped as a flash of steel hit it. The bird did not get up again. Doreiku's scimitar had ended that fight.
Domeki and Harry were only doing a little better as the giant kokeshi dolls continued their assault. They kept coming at the archer no matter how many he fended off and Harry kept on trying to blast them. They slowly whittled them down as Doreiku dealt with the stragglers. Then their success ended as an army of the creepy stone statues Watanuki had been scared by marched by them, pushing them back even as the two tried to stop them.
The statues that weren't dealing with Domeki and Harry were with Watanuki, hoisting the boy up in their arms and carrying him off as he tried to jump out of their hold.
"Stop! Hey! I said quit it!" He hollered, pushing at them, but they were unaffected and started walking towards a huge gaping chasm that had just broken off from the floor. "What are you doing! Let me go! Let me go! Put me down!" he wailed.
The statues put his arms and legs into the arms of four others, one for each limb, and the rest started pushing his torso like a swing, turning the entire group so that when they let go, he would go flying into the chasm and die. They pushed him once, twice, three times and Watanuki felt their grip slacken, ready to toss him.
He screamed as the black chasm loomed below him. Suddenly a giant kokeshi doll rolled into the statues, knocking them over like bowling pins, which was fortunate for him. What was not fortunate was that he was knocked out over the hole anyway.
"No!" He shrieked, reaching out for the ledge even as he fell. His hand caught, but his grip started to slip. He held on tighter when the worst thing happened: the wall crumbled under his grip. He started to fall, his scream increasing in volume until it was cut off by a lurch in his fall. Watanuki looked up and found Domeki hanging onto his wrist.
The archer hauled him up and Watanuki found Harry bracing his monotoned friend as Doreiku guarded them from the rear.
The warrior nodded and darted off to help Yuuko. She was still advancing on the man, who kept sending spirits at her.
Another problem presented itself. A ball rolled towards them and it grew the closer it got. It was the moon from the rice field and the rabbit emerged from its surface, mallet and all, ready to pound them all into dust. It came at Watanuki first, raising its mallet above its head and bringing it crashing down.
Thanks to Watanuki's agility and a timely blast from Harry, who was looking rather spent, the mallet missed, creating a huge crater where Watanuki's ass used to be. The rabbit turned and glared at him as he sprung to his feet screaming. The rabbit swung its mallet horizontally next, barely missing the ducking Domeki before bringing the mallet straight down, missing the archer again as he jumped out of the way.
The mallet came at Watanuki again and he rolled to the ground, feeling the rush of air as the hammer missed again. Another blast from Harry knocked the rabbit down, but it rolled to its feet, swinging at Domeki twice and then went after Harry. Harry was a lot quicker than the rabbit had expected and easily dodged.
Watanuki leapt up and kicked it to distract it, but now it was coming after him again! He screamed and ran away, barely jumping away as the mallet skimmed past his back.
"Noooooo!" He yelled. Having made a perfect distraction, Domeki and Harry used this opportunity to grab the huge moon that the rabbit had come it and pushed the ball with all their might. This sent it rolling towards the creature. Watanuki had tripped and fallen to the ground, crawling back on his elbows as the rabbit advanced on him threateningly, its mallet scraping the ground.
"Watanuki! Heads up!" Domeki shouted and Harry shouted, "Move!" This caught the seer's attention. The rabbit's too, but the creature was too slow and the moon rolled over him and out of sight as Watanuki barely curled himself away. He scrambled to his feet and ran over to them, feeling safer if he had people watching his back. Over the sounds of the collapsing room, the boy heard Yuuko speaking, to the man who was looking increasingly frustrated and unstable that he couldn't hit or capture the woman advancing on him.
"You may haunt the mansion, but in reality, the mansion now possesses you," Yuuko's voice took on that mysterious, echo-y quality that it did sometimes, her eyebrows furrowed. Watanuki now knew what this was: this was Yuuko bringing her witchcraft to bear. She continued on, "It doesn't matter how many people's souls you collect, even adding my soul to your collection won't change anything. You're as damned as those people in the painting. When I think about that, I almost feel sorry for you, but not quite."
The man's expression took on a murderous but at the same time, scared quality as he unleashed anther barrage of spirits on the woman, completely clouding out her form even as she tripped a little and caught herself. Doreiku wasn't far behind and was catching up rapidly.
The cloud of spirits hid Yuuko for a moment, before she burst through, running at the spirit, determination in her eyes. Yuuko wasn't scared, but the spirit was, backing away fearfully until he himself tripped, falling to the ground.
"And now it's time for this game to be over!" Yuuko said harshly, holding up her gloved hand as if to attack. As she reached the spirit, a bright, shining circle appeared on the floor, enveloping her in a pillar of light and holding her frozen in place. Doreiku skidded to a halt, his eyes wide. Yuuko had crossed some kind of seal on the floor, the eye of the seal staring up at her ruefully.
"You fell for it," the spirit chuckled, Yuuko's body vanished along with the circle, but a line of portraits appeared behind the spirit, portraits of some of the collectors he'd gathered, including his newest one. Yuuko was painted on a blue background, hand held up like it had been when she was frozen, hanging next to the spoon collector on the insubstantial wall.
"Oh no! It's Yuuko!" Watanuki yelled. He, Domeki and Harry were surrounded by the statues and kokeshi dolls again, but they stopped moving, their job done now that their master had what he wanted. The white room disappeared, replaced by shifting walls of smoke, the only thing visible being the portraits.
"I've finally captured you," the spirit said, standing in front of Yuuko's picture. "You don't think I'll be satisfied? We'll see about that."
"You let her go!" Watanuki screamed, running at the spirit who'd trapped his friend and employer. A giant flower appeared in front of him as he neared the man, smacking him back and sending him tumbling to the floor.
"Oh, I almost forgot. I have to get rid of you miserable brats as well." The man looked behind him and stared the three boys down with a sickly smile. He started walking towards them, his face holding all sorts of painful promises at causing him so much trouble when he felt something coming at him. The spirit stopped, just in time too, as Doreiku sent a blade of energy screaming in between the spirit and the three. The warrior glared, "You may have captured the witch, but you left yourself open. Are you ready to meet your maker?"
The spirit turned to face the warrior and activated another seal. Doreiku hadn't survived the Tomb of Horrors and Acererak, who was an actual lich, to be taken down so easily. He darted out of the way, swinging his blade down as he did and disabled the seal entirely. The spirit advanced again towards the three trapped boys, dodging attacks from Doreiku all the while.
"I found what I was looking for," Yuuko's voice came from somewhere in the room, stopping the spirit in his tracks. The Yuuko in the painting moved, her hand coming down as she looked out into the room. "I had to get inside your mind in order to find your weakness. When you captured me, I saw what Watanuki had already found." She held up the painting of the little girl in the pink dress. "You remember now, don't you?" Yuuko asked. "This is what you've been looking for all these years. This is what you truly want."
The spirit walked back to Yuuko as Doreiku sheathed his scimitar, placing his hands on her painting and then dropping his head. His hands slipped through the surface and came around to hold the painting of the girl, pulling it out into reality. He stared at it for a moment before crossing his arms behind the picture, hugging it and beginning to cry as the walls and ceiling started to crumble again.
Outside, the mansion started to crumble, the patchwork architecture dissolving and crashing to the ground, sending up a large cloud of dust, leaving behind a much smaller, but no less grand house in its wake, surrounded by a huge, grass covered yard. The spirit's malicious intent was gone, leaving behind a peaceful sense of normalcy and a bright morning. Watanuki, Domeki, Harry and Doreiku were outside, staring up at the sky and the trees of the mountains surrounding them, the backside of the mansion in front of them.
"The mansion's changed!" Watanuki exclaimed. The spirit man was kneeling on the ground by the left back corner of the house, still holding the painting. Watanuki watched him like a hawk. While doing so, he saw something out of the corner of his eye and whipped his head around, seeing Yuuko standing at the other corner.
"You got out!" he shouted, leaping to his feet and running over to the woman. "Yuuko! Are you alright?!" he rounded the corner and saw an old woman in a wheelchair next to Yuuko. "Huh? Who's this old lady?"
"I wish I knew how to thank you for what you've done," the old lady started. She looked familiar somehow, her faded brown hair cut short, her soft blue eyes striking a cord with the raven-haired seer. She was wearing a yellow dress with a white ruffled collar and the huge pink bow that also seemed familiar, but he couldn't place it. "You have granted my only wish." She bowed to Yuuko respectfully.
"I have to warn you, he's still a little lost inside himself," Yuuko said, pulling out the golden key the young lady had given her back at the shop. "Here, I thought you'd might like to have this back." The old lady looked at it and then shook her head.
"No, thank you. I don't think I'll be needing it now," she said. Yuuko smiled at her. The old lady turned her wheelchair to the right and started to roll herself over to the man kneeling in the grass. When she reached him, she stopped. "Excuse me, young man…do you remember who I am?"
The man gazed up at the woman before his eyes widened, filling with tears. To everyone else, she was an old woman, but to him, she was still a young girl wearing her favorite pink dress, her brown hair long like she used to have it. They had said goodbye at this very mansion, and he'd promised her that he'd make a collection that no one else had ever had, prompting her to keep expanding her bean bag collection.
It had been a sorrowful parting as she valiantly tried not to cry. She'd promised to come back one day when she was all grown up, as long as he'd promised to watch over the house and in return that they'd meet again someday.
"I've missed you," he said, throwing his head into her lap, not trying to hold back his tears. She stroked his head softly.
"I can't tell you how much I've missed you. I'm sorry I stayed away so long," she apologized. "I bought back the house like I said I would but the key wouldn't work and I couldn't get back inside."
"Somewhere along the line, I forgot the reason behind my collection…I was keeping it for you to see, so that you'd know that I'd kept my promise…I became lost in it. I'm so sorry."
"I think it's finally time to let go of your collection," the old lady said, "It's been long enough."
"You're right," he nodded.
"I can't believe you remember me after all these years, so much has changed. Look at me, I'm an old woman and you've stayed the same."
"To me, you haven't changed at all," he replied, looking up, still seeing the smiling face of the young girl he used to know. "I still see you as you were the day you left." The little girl smiled at him.
"Welcome back," he replied.
"We can be together forever, right?"
"Yes. You can stay forever." The door to the mansion opened behind them, bathing the pair in white light before they walked inside, hand in hand, the door shutting behind them. Yuuko, Harry, Domeki and Watanuki were smiling know as Doreiku joined them.
Then something caught their attention. The warrior began to shine brightly and aethereal silver feathered wings unfurled from his back, as he closed his eyes and slowly nodded. A spiraling stream of magic flowed out of him and onto the mansion, the wings dissolving into it. He turned and began walking off of the property, offering no explanation to those that followed.
No explanation, except to Yuuko, when she asked him. Doreiku slowed his paced so that the other three boys would walk ahead for a bit.
"It was a gift," he said in reply to the witch's question, "A duty that I am bound to by the Great One until after my trials. Had that spirit not changed when you showed him that painting, I was going to kill him for taking the souls of others. Only those with the given right over death, such as Null and obviously the Great One are allowed to take souls like that and only at their proper time."
"So, you were going to end the spirit just like that?" Yuuko asked.
"Yes, even though you would not like it. But now they'll have many more years together and when their time finally does come, it will be peaceful and they'll go together."
Yuuko shook her head and smiled.
"Mom," Doreiku said, catching her attention. "I'm sorry for my behavior in the last day. I-." Yuuko placed a slender finger on his lips.
"There is no need. You were giving me a warning that I should have heeded. I should have explained to all of you what I was doing. I should be the one apologizing."
The teen smiled and just embraced Yuuko, surprising the witch, her red eyes widening. She then hugged him with one arm and they eventually caught up with the others, who were waiting for them at the road.
They found an inn on the other side of the lake, across from where the mansion sat, because Yuuko decided that they should all get some relaxation time after their adventure. Watanuki agreed with her, but Yuuko being Yuuko almost got them two rooms with a kitchen, but luckily Doreiku quickly paid enough while the two were arguing for them to have a set up with five rooms and a kitchen as the inn was surprisingly empty for the summertime. One of the rooms was a sitting area that overlooked the lake. Doreiku had a habit of sleeping outside when the weather was nice.
Yuuko was the first to take a bath, (even though there were four bathrooms, the boys still had to unpack and take care of Harry whom in the fight had pushed himself almost to magical exhaustion), and Doreiku wasn't even sweaty at all, though he did jump in the lake on their way over as Mokona had been fooling around and fallen in.
When the witch emerged with her newly washed hair and body clad in a pink yukata, she took a seat by the open window and fanned herself on the ledge, leaning against the door. Doreiku and Harry were on the rooftop, enjoying the sun, the warrior quietly teaching Harry a song he had heard during his training and eavesdropping on Yuuko and Watanuki who finished his own bath.
"Too much saké," Mokona groaned, reappearing from where ever he had been, drunk as a skunk, flopping down by the window with Yuuko.
Watanuki came out of the bathroom in a blue yukata, a towel around his neck. He sat down at a small table with some tea. He looked at the black puffball and shook his head.
He gazed out the window at the mansion, just like Yuuko was. "What do you think will become of the mansion now that it's not haunted anymore?" He asked.
"The old woman has decided to turn it into a museum," Yuuko answered. "She's going to be its curator." A strange noise came from above them and they heard muffled thumps. Doreiku entered the room not long afterwards and leaned up against the wall.
Watanuki continued to look out the window.
"Will she be able to handle it all by herself?"
"Don't worry. The collectors that were freed offered to help her, they even wanted to donate to the museum."
Doreiku chuckled, "And they learned a lesson about greed as well in their misadventure." Yuuko and Watanuki turned to the warrior, who explained, "The man in the suit was arrested not even an hour ago. Turns out that some of the items in his collection were…illegally acquired. Red Jacket is also facing an investigation. Something having to do with assault."
Yuuko and Watanuki shook their heads as Doreiku left, catching sight of Domeki and wanting to let him know.
"I guess the mansion won't be closed up anymore, will it?" Watanuki continued, leaning back in his chair. "Still, I had no idea that the girl at the mansion, and the young lady who came to your shop, were really spirit projections of that old lady."
Yuuko answered him, "There was a moment there where I was going to turn her away. But then I felt a connection to her…like she was feeling something I'd felt long ago." Watanuki stopped drinking and looked at his boss, surprised.
"I've never heard you talk about your past before, Yuuko. Were you in love once? Was your heart ever broken?" He asked, curious as to what Yuuko's life had been before she owned the shop as she never talked about her past.
"You want to know?" Yuuko turned from the window and stared at the boy with her deep, cranberry colored eyes, as if daring him to ask. Watanuki, while intimidated, wanted to know and nodded, his curiosity burning. However, before Yuuko could speak, Mokona jumped up, its eyes wide open, blue jewel flashing.
"I have an urgent message from Syaoran!" The puffball said.
"Oh, I haven't heard from them in a while," Yuuko remarked. Mokona jumped onto the window ledge and its jewel started projecting an image in a circle of light. A brunette boy with brown eyes and two girls appeared in the image, one with short blonde hair and green eyes and the other with long black hair and blue eyes. The blonde girl was Sakura, if Watanuki remembered correctly, he only helped them once since Yuuko died before she came back, but the other girl was unfamiliar to him.
"Yuuko! Watanuki said you were dead!" Syaoran said in surprise.
Yuuko chuckled softly, "Yes, he was correct. However, I don't believe that now is the correct time to tell that tale."
Syaoran nodded in understanding, "Listen, I need help to save the Land of Birds!" His voice grew desperate. "I have to find a way to open a magic bird cage in order to save this place!"
"So, basically you need a key, is that right?" Yuuko answered, reaching into her yukata sleeve, "Well, I think I have just the thing to help you." The witch held up the key to the mansion, its gold surface shining in the sunlight. "This artifact recently came into my possession. It can open anything you wish."
"Thank you, Yuuko," Syaoran's head dipped in a bow.
"I assume that you remember I require compensation, Syaoran?" Yuuko prompted, getting her price.
"I don't think I have anything you give you," He replied. Watanuki knew that they were sunk as Yuuko never gave up anything without getting something in return; except for Doreiku, but he was her adopted son so the rules were different.
"What about this?" The black-haired girl asked, holding up a small, tinkling bell. "Will this work, Yuuko?"
"In order to be equal in worth, this thing must be important to you," Yuuko guessed, "This bell must be more than it seems. I accept. Mokona." The witch called to her companion. Mokona opened its mouth and swallowed the key as Yuuko tossed it in, and then tossed out the bell into Yuuko's hands. Syaoran was now holding the key. "Use it well…and good luck."
Mokona returned to its lazy self. Yuuko slipped the magenta strap of the small, white bell onto her finger, ringing the object as she looked at its blue flower designs. However, before the woman could speak, Watanuki repeated his question. Yuuko put the bell away and turned to him.
She opened her mouth to speak and then was interrupted by loud singing from outside.
"Yuuko and Clow sittin in a tree!" Came two teenaged male voices, "K-I-S-S-I-N-G!" Doreiku and Harry's trap had been sprung. Yuuko froze at this as Watanuki tried to contain his laughter at her face. She was turning bright red and her hands clenched.
The song continued, "First comes the love! Then comes the marriage!" Yuuko gritted her teeth and finally lost it as the boys completed the song, "Then comes the baby in the baby carriage!"
"Where did you two hear about that?!" She screamed, her eyes blazing. The boys ignored her and began again.
"Yuuko and Clow sittin in a tree!"
Faster than Watanuki had ever seen his boss move, Yuuko was dressed and out the door, shouting at Watanuki to hurry up and follow. The seer raced after his boss, passing Domeki and Himawari who had just shown up.
Outside, the boys had just heard Yuuko scream at them and grinned. The plan was working perfectly. So, they began again. Then they heard Yuuko shout at Watanuki and they took off after leaving a note behind.
Yuuko stormed out of the inn, she was irate. Watanuki was right behind her, but he was trying to keep from laughing at her reaction. This is too funny, he thought. Normally Yuuko was the one causing people, namely himself to lose control like this.
The witch cast her furious gaze around trying to find the two boys who had given Watanuki the answer he wanted and she wasn't able to trick him into cooking! Her eyes found a note. She picked it up and read it aloud.
"We know what you were going to do. So, let's play a game. A mixture of Hide and Seek and Tag. And Watanuki and Domeki cannot help you. Let us begin."
Yuuko ground her teeth and raced off in the direction that the teens' tracks led. After she vanished from sight, Watanuki, Domeki, and Himawari all burst out in laughter! Yuuko had forgotten that Doreiku and Harry could move very fast when they wanted and often not on the ground.
"I can't believe it!" Watanuki gasped out, "Yuuko beaten at her own game! Mark this day down and declare it a holiday!"
Himawari was rolling on the ground laughing, she couldn't answer.
Domeki managed to asked Mokona, who had shown up, "So, were Harry and Doreiku correct?"
The Mokona sighed, "Yes, they were, and Doreiku knew how Yuuko was going to react at Clow Reed's name. Luckily, this never happens that often."
Watanuki finally calmed down, "Did anyone get a picture of Yuuko's face?!"
Domeki handed over a camera and Watanuki scrolled through the images. Even better than a picture, Domeki had managed to get a video!
Shouting could be heard from the trees. It was Yuuko, trying to chase down Doreiku and Harry. Suddenly, from behind a bush, Harry burst out of the woods with Yuuko in pursuit. The young wizard climbed a tree to get out of reach. Yuuko tried to grab him, but missed by a fraction of an inch. The wizard sat just out of her reach making faces all the while.
"I will get you," Yuuko growled. She started to climb the tree, but Harry, being much nimbler was able to snake his way through the branches as Watanuki laughed and laughed. The seer knew that Harry had, while Yuuko was taking her bath, placed his broomstick in the uppermost branches.
Harry grabbed his broom as Yuuko cursed, her long hair getting caught on a branch. He took off from the tree and hovered over the lake safely out of reach. They heard a laugh coming from the edge of the woods. Doreiku was standing there, grinning.
"Looks like old age and treachery doesn't always out do youth and exuberance every time, eh Yuuko?!" he shouted to the woman.
She carefully picked her way out of the tree, glaring at Harry who cheekily waved at her. The witch's hair was full of twigs and leaves and she did not look happy.
"I will make you pay for that, brat!" She snarled and took off after Doreiku. The warrior darted away, with the witch in hot pursuit. It went on like this for another hour or so, with Doreiku easily evading Yuuko by climbing into trees, launching himself off rocks and at one-point scrambling on top of the inn. In time, Yuuko forgot why she was even chasing the boys, now just having fun. That is until Doreiku jumped from the roof of the inn to Harry's broom and the two started singing again, grinning.
"Yuuko and Clow sittin in a tree! K-I-S-S-I-N-G!" They darted down past the screaming Yuuko, who made a last-ditch effort to catch them.
"Who told you about Clow Reed!?" She gasped out, as the boys easily dodged and hid. She searched for about five minutes and then walked back to the waiting quartet of Mokona, Watanuki, Domeki and Himawari. She was exhausted! She collapsed onto a beach chair.
Watanuki quietly handed his boss a glass of cold water, which she drank without complaint.
"I guess they win, Yuuko," he grinned. Yuuko sighed.
"That they do. However, I am going to make them pay for that song later, Watanuki. That is an inevitability."
Watanuki snapped his fingers, and suddenly Yuuko was sitting there in her purple bathing suit.
Domeki gave a sharp whistle, akin to that which a falconer would give to his bird.
"Huh?!" Yuuko exclaimed.
Doreiku and Harry burst vertically into the air with large buckets in their hands, causing Mokona, Watanuki, Domeki and Himawari to step back.
Yuuko looked up at this and screamed in terror and tried to flee. But it was too late.
Doreiku and Harry both dumped massive buckets of water onto the Dimensional Witch, soaking her to the bone. Her hair was dripping wet and in front of her eyes. She squeezed some of the water out of it and moved it aside so that she could see.
The two teens tapped her on the shoulder and said, "We win!" and promptly darted out of range, pulling off their shirts.
By now it was an hour after noon and extremely hot out. Yuuko straightened her hair out the best she could and stood. She shook her head.
"Very well. I admit my defeat," the woman said. Harry and Doreiku tackled her in a hug, big smiles on their faces. Yuuko started laughing, her eyes dancing with mirth and she gently tussled with the two. Eventually, she ended up sitting on the ground with her arms wrapped around the two boys, her eyes alive with laughter and a gigantic smile across her face.
Watanuki snapped a picture at this moment and handed the camera to Mokona to put away, remarking, "I think it's time they started a family photo album."
Mokona giggled and said, "That's a good idea."
By now, Himawari had left, returning to her aunt's and Doreiku and Harry were getting ready to go swimming as the lake was actually pretty clear of weeds and dirt. Domeki and Watanuki ran into the water as Watanuki shouted at Yuuko to, "Come on in! The water's fine!"
Seeing her charges having the time of their lives, she couldn't say no to them and she ran in as well. The rest of the afternoon passed this way, with Yuuko taking the time to teach Harry how to swim properly. Eventually though, things had to come to an end and they all dried themselves off to head inside and wash the sweat and lake water off them.
An hour later, all nicely clean and dried, the six sat around a table eating dinner. Watanuki was happy that he didn't have to cook for once. They were all ravenous after the mansion and an afternoon of fun and teasing Yuuko. No one spoke until after dinner where they all sat outside on the porch watching the stars. The Dimensional Witch was sipping on some saké when something fluttered down to them.
It was small, about the size of a housecat and looked like a dragon, with a barbed tail like that of a scorpion. It carried a letter strapped to one of its forelegs. Doreiku gave the creature some meat that he had on hand and relieved it of its letter. The little dragon-creature scarfed up the offered meat and took off into the night as Doreiku read through the letter. It was in Draconic.
"What was that thing?" Watanuki asked, curiously after the creature had vanished into the night.
Yuuko took a sip of saké and replied, "That was a pseudodragon, I believe. I've never actually seen one up close before. They're supposed to be extremely rare now and have magical powers to them."
Doreiku grunted, "Yes. They're also telepathic and highly intelligent. They were a lot more common in the old days and in Faerûn, a continent on the world of Toril, those trained in magic often kept them as familiars. Consider yourselves lucky. Very few even get a glimpse of a pseudodragon now."
He looked up from the letter at Yuuko.
"Aunt Tia wrote, Yuuko," he said. The woman raised a fine eyebrow at him. "She said the trials begin tomorrow. Well, her trial at least. She writes that I've already passed Null's test."
"Huh?" Watanuki asked.
"The spirit in the mansion," the part dragon replied, "Uncle Null is the dragon god of death and undeath and so that spirit fell under his domain. Apparently, I was to make a decision based on the behavior of that spirit and decide whether to spare him or not. When I chose to wait and then spare him due to his mistakes and his acknowledgment of them, I passed Null's test."
Watanuki and Domeki both looked confused so Yuuko explained.
"Watanuki, it is a similar situation to what happened to me. His deeds were weighed and by that he would be judged. With kami and great beings, the power over death doesn't just mean taking lives, it also means knowing when a being deserves to continue living and be spared or in my case, gain immortality," the witch told them.
"Yes," Doreiku put in, "However, that latter part of immortality remains with one being here in our universe, and another being in Realmspace, the universe where my ancestors come from. Never try to seek such a thing out. If you are worthy of it, then immortality will be given after many, many years." Here he yawned, followed not to long by the others.
"Alright, time for bed." She chivied all of them into their respective rooms, and because lately she had been having nightmares of her death, she put Doreiku on the couch in her room as a ward against the dreams. Also as a potential teddy bear incase she did have a bad dream, but Yuuko would never admit to that.
The witch gently kissed her adopted son on the forehead as he closed his eyes.
"Good night," she whispered, "And sweet dreams too." Mokona turned off the light and she laid down and fell fast asleep.
Alright Guys, here's chapter four! Next chapter, the trials begin! Will Doreiku survive? Will Watanuki scream in terror? Will Yuuko try to strangle her adopted son for scaring her? Find out next time! Please read and review I appreciate your feedback!