Hell, this is going to be hard to update fast... I've got two other stories going and I just had to get this in... Anywayz, I'll see you at the bottom!
Standard disclaimers appy- I do not own our beloved Rurouni Kenshin
I walked down the street looking for a good place to sleep, but every inn I went to had no vacancies. The thought of spending the night outside had crossed my mind many a time, but this part of town seemed to be... thuggish, though I am afraid that is too nice a word. So, now, I am wandering the streets looking for a nicer place to spend the night.
"You there," calls a man from behind me, "You there, red-head!"
"Oro?" I turn to see an older man, late forty's at least, in a blue suit pointing his bokken at me. A police officer. "This one, sir?" I ask politely, giving him my best rurouni smile. I scratch my scarred cheek.
"Yes, boy, you," he calls angrily, "What do you think you're doing out here at this hour!?" He seems to be unaffected by my, normally disarming, smile.
I put my hand on the back of my head and laughed nervously. I'm hardly a boy though. "What do you mean, good sir?" I ask, pretending to be clueless. I pray to God that he does not see my sakabato.
"Don't play stupid with me! Why are you out at this time of night? ..." I shift nervously and the light from the full moon glints off of the hilt of my sword. It catches his eye. "And you have a sword!"
Silently, I curse my twitching nerves. I back away slowly; my hand brushes through my hair and stays on the back of my neck. "Sword? Oh this?" I gesture towards my sakabato, still trying to act clueless.
"You're violating the Sword-Banning Act, boy. I have to arrest you!" The officer charges at me and I simply run; I want to avoid a fight if possible.
Now I am breathing heavily, still trying to elude the officer, but he isn't giving up easily. We have been running for at least five minutes. Why doesn't he tire? I glance behind me and he has stopped. One hand was on his knee, helping himself keep his balance, the other hand, a fist, shaking at me. He takes his eyes off my retreating figure and looks at the ground. I slow down and duck into the shadows along an alley.
Jeeze, could that old man run! I place my hand on the wall and slow to a trot. I look behind me to see that he is not following me. I sigh and close my eyes.
Suddenly, something hits my foot and the ground rushes up to meet me. "Oro," I moan. Apparently my god-like speed doesn't include tripping reflexes. I lift myself up by my palms and use one hand to rub my nose. Ouch... that really hurt. I wonder what I tripped over.
I grope the ground for the object I tripped over. My fingers suddenly touch a leather something and I scramble over to pick it up. It was too dark in this alley to see what it was. I slip it into the sleeve of my gi and walk out into the moonlight, looking left and right to see if anyone was there (especially the officer.) No one. Good, now... what is this leather thing?
I take my tripping object out of my sleeve and study it carefully. It seems to be a book. A book, huh? I wonder what it's about.
I flip back the leather to see the first page, barely legible in the moonlight, but just enough.
Father was drafted 6 months ago for the Seinan War. He surprised me with you when he was leaving and said that in his absence you can be the one I talk to. I refused to write in you, because I didn't want to think of his not being here, at the dojo. I absorbed myself in Kamiya Kasshin-Ryu, hoping that when he came back, we could still practice together and I would be at my best. I always admired the fact that he had made his own sword style based on katsujin-ken.
Until I learned that his absence was permanent was when I actually considered taking his gift to heart. Well, I certainly do wish I still could talk to him, but now I see that you are the next best thing. Even though you can't dry my ever flowing tears of loss, or you can't comfort me, I can talk to you, I can write in you and you know my feelings. I am glad Father thought of a diary. He knew me very well it seems.
Diary, I do miss Father terribly. My friends have tried to comfort me, but I think what I need is love. Everyone loves me in a sibling kind of way. Dr. Genzai, well he is a good "grandfather." But what I mean is someone who can heal my heart. Someone I can fall madly in love with and they can feel the same. I don't want a father, or anymore siblings. I want a lover, a best friend.
Hmm, now I think I must be dreaming. I doubt there is a someone out there for me. Luckily though, my friends have someone. Sanosuke and Megumi; even though they bicker constantly. Misao and Aoshi; even though he doesn't talk. And little Yahiko, he's so fond of Tsuebame.
When I think of everyone else and how perfect they are for each other, it makes me think of my imperfections.
I turned the page with question. Their imperfections? He/She doesn't seem to be fond of him/her-self. A girl maybe, though?
I sometimes laugh at myself because of how childish I am at the age of 17. I throw things; I am always hitting Yahiko and Sano, and Megumi and I always bicker about stupid things. I can't cook, and I absorb my day in training. And most of all... I'm not at all beautiful... Not at all like Megumi or... or even Misao.
As long as my makeshift family can be happy, though, I suppose I can be too.
Well, that's enough for tonight, Diary.
Ah, I was right... a girl. A girl studying kenjutsu? How odd. Kamiya Kasshin-Ryu, she had called it. I shrug. It doesn't matter.
I read over the part about her imperfections again. When I think of everyone else and how perfect they are for each other, it makes me think of my imperfections. How sad, that she thinks of herself in such a way. Kaoru... what a beautiful name.
Well, enough of this diary. I really need to find a place to sleep.
I look around and spot a small grove of trees a little ways from the town. Looks like a good place to sleep.
I slump against the tree and place my sakabato against my shoulder. Slowly sleep claims me.
I find myself coming gradually back into consciousness. I open my eyes and I look around. The sun is rising. I take in a deep breath of fresh air. It will be a beautiful day today, only because I will it to.
My mind wanders to the diary I hold in the sleeve of my gi. Maybe I should read another entry. I am very aware that it will be invading someone's personal privacy, but this girl, Kaoru, she interests me.
I slouch against the tree and take out the diary.
It has been two days, I know, but yesterday I had nothing to say. Today a young man came to the house and asked if I would take his hand in marriage. It's funny, Diary, I didn't even know the boy, and so, I turned him down.
I know I talked of being loved and wanting someone to be madly in love with but... the thing is... I want to feel it, fall into it. I don't want to be forced into love. That wouldn't be right.
I still wait to find the perfect man. People say it's not good to learn how to love. It has to be almost immediate. What if the feelings are dormant though, ne? What if this person is your best friend and then you realize you love him? I'm not in that situation, no. But that's the kind I want to be in. I want to love this man as a best friend, then something happens one day and you realize "Wait! I love him!"
I have to laugh at myself again though, Diary. I'm dreaming. Just one day, Diary, I wish... I wish that I will fall in love. I don't have a perfect life, and most of it is my fault... but... I want...I want a perfect love.
Wow, that was pretty deep. I blink. Her dreams are special and are oddly similar to my own. I believe that one should fall into love. She is correct that love should not be forced or learned.
I laugh. It makes one wonder, if Tomoe and I were forced into love. It seemed she learned to love me, and I forced myself to love her. Maybe that is why fate was so cruel to us. We believed we could live with untrue love.
I shake the saddening thoughts from my head. I laugh again. This girl is making me think about things that I have not bothered with for roughly ten years, and I have not even met her!
I have been walking for hours now, just two more to the next town. No matter how much I try not to let it, Kaoru's diary keeps coming to my mind. I have come to the conclusion that I will try to find this girl and give her back her diary. It seems to me that this girl is probably going crazy trying to find it.
My stomach growls, bringing me out of my thoughts, and I realize I haven't eaten in nearly two days. There is a river near, so maybe I can fish.
At the river I look around for the makings of a makeshift pole. Finding none, I resort to my reversed-blade sword. I'll just have to make sure to dry it off so it doesn't rust.
I can imagine what the people who are passing by are seeing: A long- haired, red-head who is waist deep in the river stabbing at the water with his sword like a maniac. That is probably why the few people who pass by start laughing. Particularly one little boy who thinks it is so funny; he literally falls to the ground, clutching his stomach, laughing hysterically.
Finally I get a fish! I take it up to the bank and cook it. The fish isn't very good, but who am I to complain; I'm starving!
I thank God that the night is warm, because after fishing like that, my hakama is completely wet.
See you next time! Review! thx...
Next chapter- A Connection