Alright… let's face it, I can't remember any reviews and I'm too lazy to go back to reread them. Life has been busy, and school once more tries to, and very successfully mind you, bulldozed me over. If I offend anyone by stating this, I am sorry, but at the moment that I wrote this, I'm not exactly in a happy mood… Nothing bad minds you, just not happy-go-lucky or at least content. Annoyed would probably be a very good way to describe me as I write this.
Either way, without further ado, here is part 2.
Disclaimer: I do not own either of the two mangas/animes. They belong to their respective creator and will most likely NEVER end up in my hands.
Miya has a "don't ask, don't tell" policy.
It stems from the fact that everything under her roof, she knows. For example, she knows what Uzume is doing, though she will not react upon it until the girl either comes to her about it, or finally falls into the hole she's digging herself into. In the case of the latter, Miya will keep herself from action until Uzume cross the line.
It is also why it seems that Miya always pops out when a fight is about to occurs or when Minato somehow lands himself in an "inappropriate" situation as Miya likes to call them. She knows it all, but so long as no one asks her, she will not tell.
This is also why she is such a good keeper of information and secrets: no one dares to ask her. They, being a lot of people that comes and goes in her life, have tried to persuade her, bribe her, and even manipulate her, but never once did they succeed. It never once occurs to them that they can simply try asking for it.
It is amazing how much things can be avoided if one simply ASKS for it. Oh well… that's why the world is as it is.
Still, as she hums to herself while airing out some tatami mats, Miya ponders upon whether she should have told Homura more about the situation he's about to land himself in. While Miya doesn't know all the specifics herself, it isn't hard to have Matsu to do a little digging for her. Of course, knowing the restaurant name is enough to let Miya have some idea of the event that might occur. Takami plus Homura usually means the Twins are at it against another Unwinged Sekirei, and they are heading towards a specific restaurant upon Homura's call. Karasuba (whose name still leaves a bitter taste in her mouth after all these times) is within that restaurant with a certain being, and that along lets Miya rest a few of her worries despite how short it'll probably be.
Hmm… Oh well. Miya is sure that whatever is going to happen will sort itself out. She has faith in Naruto, and if not him, then at least grudging respect for Karasuba to have some inking of what to do. Being a Single Digit and part of the First Gen Disciplinary Squad means that she can't afford to be ignorant about things nor make stupid decisions on the fly (though the latter is mostly ignored because… let's face it, even Miya made her fair share of stupid mistakes no matter how rare).
Now where did she put her… Oh forget it. She can't concentrate on her house work at the moment. Besides, the tatami can be left out to air so long as it doesn't rain and nobody, and that means NOBODY is stupid enough to steal from her. Not after what happened to the last one that tried at least. Miya passively wonders if the thief is still in the mental ward before shrugging and calls out in a sing-song voice, "Matsu~~. I require a bit of your time if it's not too much trouble."
In another word: You're helping me with what I want, whether you like it or not.
The small squeak from somewhere inside the inn alerts Miya to the fact that Matsu knows what is required of her, and that she has a minute to clean up whatever she isn't suppose to be doing in her room before the landlady "stumbles" upon it. How she loves that feeling of power sometimes.
Sometimes, and Miya only means SOMETIMES (read most of the time); it pays to be as powerful and scary as she is.
Yomi is… amazed.
That's all she can say about the situation as she watches Naruto talk with Karasuba as if it's an everyday thing. He talks to her like she's just some old friend from way back, instead of one of the being on the entire earth that is capable of actually performing genocides should she want to. Yomi isn't stupid, she knows who she is, she knows what she is capable of now thanks to Naruto, and she certainly knows for a fact that being one of the Top Five Single Digit, the Sekirei in front of her may as well be a freaking monster wearing a lamp's skin. Forget wolves, they hold nothing to her.
"So there really isn't anything interesting that happened recently in MBI?"
"Hmm? Not that I know of. Why Naru-chan? Are you getting bored?"
"Well… I might sneak in to mess with Takami's head. She's a fun one when you know what to do."
"Oro? I wonder how her son will react to that… By the way, did you know that her daughter…"
Thus that is why she is so amazed when Karasuba talks back the same way Naruto is talking to her. The usual insults are there, the mock banters, the jokes, the teasing; all the things you would expect between two good friends talking about their everyday event are there.
"Oi, is it really so hard to be a little more lady like every now and then? At the very least when you're in front of me?"
"Yara, yara, I see no reason to behave myself or prove myself to your image. I am here, treating you to lunch, so the least you can do is let me do as I please ne?"
"Fine, fine, but that is only because you're treating. If I'm treating, I'm expecting you to at least show some courtesy or table manner."
"What are you talking about? I'm not rude at all. Or are you implying at something?"
So, as she slowly sips at her soup, Yomi can only gaze at the two wide eyed and keeps completely out of the conversation completely. Of course, the way Karasuba leans her katana against her shoulder helps her resolve in keeping her mouth shut.
"So is that one a special katana or just another cheap mass production from the factory?"
"This one? Nah, it's just a cheap one. It's not some amazing craftsmanship mind you."
"Eh? If so, why would you even bother using it?"
"The job is dirty. Why bring something expensive when something like is will do?"
Strangely enough, no one within the restaurant seems alarmed by the presence of an armed MBI personal. No one even react to the casual talk of underground business or the implication of something… unsavory.
"Bah, that aside, how's your new Squad? I am curious as to how you get along with them… Who are they again?"
"They are Benitsubasa and Haihane, Number 105 and 104 respectively. I don't mind them… though…"
In all actuality, the most reaction she seen within the entire restaurant upon Karasuba's presence is a waiter arching a fine eyebrow before leading them to an open table.
"Eh, sounds like you are getting along just fine. Still, I wonder if you're only tolerating them or actually are having fun."
"Toleration is enough. As to fun…"
"Guess it's still a work in progress… maybe. Either way, if you're talking about that type of fun… Next time, let's try Gothic Lolita."
"…That's impossible I tell you. It is not even funny I tell you; not at all."
When she hears that, Yomi has to restrain herself from openly gawking at Naruto. Eh… how do you react to this in the first place?
So rather than trying to puzzle this out and find someway to insert herself into the conversation, Yomi instead focus her attention on her food.
Her second sirloin steak, grilled to a tender chewiness without destroying any mouth watering flavor, dripped with butter and lemon and served with a sauce that holds just an under hint of wine, to be more precise. Then to her side is a piece of fish fillet, salmon steamed and then drizzled with a sweet, buttery sauce that tingles her taste buds while make her brain melt to mush in its heavenly delight. To her left is a bowl of mushroom cream soup, with just the perfect thickness to contain its texture, but thin enough that it slips right pass her tongue and down her throat in a sensual movement. Then next to the soup is a piece of French bread, sliced at just the ride thickness and toasted with garlic and other herbs, maximizing its flavor. When combined with the soup, her taste buds sing the Halleluiah Chorus and her body shivers with delight. Ah, life couldn't get any better than this can it?
Actually, it can… though we'll avoid any more food presentation so as not to tick off any hungry readers.
While popping another piece of steak into her mouth, Yomi directs an ear to the conversation going next to her, finding nothing of interest as of yet other than the usual gossips one would expect from two friends. That in itself catches her attention, because Sekirei Number 43 isn't sure what the two can talk about with such happy tones. Her interest peaks once more as Naruto then start to tease Karasuba, requesting that she smile when the Sekirei is already smiling. It tickles at her brain because it sounds awfully strange, but familiar in some bizarre way. Yomi wonders what is wrong with Karasuba's smile… other than the chill it sends down her spin every now and then.
A cold smile befitting a cold blooded killer; poetic justice to its very finest…
"You know, I just have a flashback to that day…"
"…Oi… That was not happy memory."
"Really? Takehito and I had fun."
"At our expense…"
Eh, not really.
As far as she can see, if not for her outfit, her katana, and her recognizable look, Yomi would actually think of her as just another girl having fun talking to her friend.
There is just something different about Karasuba when she is in Naruto's presence.
Very different from the small run in they once had in MBI's lab.
"Yare, yare, this one probably won't amount to much… so weak…"
"Karasuba, please don't antagonize any Sekireis. They can always end up as your future teammates."
"Hmm… I'm just saying it as I see it Sahashi-san…"
"…Seriously… I'll never understand you."
"Yomi-chan? Captain Ramen to Yomi-chan?" A voice calls out, and Yomi blinks just in time to see a hand waving in front of her in a manner as which to catch her attention. Just then, the words used for such action catch on, and the Sekirei has to reward her benefactor with a deadpan. "Ah, there we go. I thought we lost you in Cloud Nine or something." Naruto says cheerfully, completely disregarding the slight twitching of Yomi's lips into a frown. "Anyway, back to my original question. How's the food so far?"
Sekirei Number 43 blinks again, wondering why he would bother asking her such question. One only needs to look at the amount of empty plates stacked at the end of the table to know… Still, it is polite to give answer, and so Yomi says with a smile, "The food is great. This place lives up to its rank. Though I do imagine the price…"
"Forget about it. It won't even put a dent in MBI's assets." It is Karasuba who waves her off, leaning back so that she can swing an arm over the chair's back. It still amazes Yomi just how much her posture and her expression contradicts each other, her body obviously relaxed, but her true feeling is guarded behind a thick wall of something… Actually, why would she know that? How would probably be a better question, considering she never studied body language or how to discern expressions. "Is there something on my face?"
"E-eh? N-N-N-N-N-NO! NO! I'm just… err…" Yomi stutters as she is caught staring. The amused smirk fired her way doesn't help with her embarrassment. The way Naruto chuckles also do no help either. That does reminds her… "Is there… something I can help with?"
"You can join the conversation for one." Naruto offers with a wave of his hand, and Yomi resumes her blank expression coupled with blinking. Seeing this, Naruto arches an eyebrow and elaborates by saying, "Well, it's boring just sitting there right? Sure the food is good, and it's a good thing to savor it. But would it be much better to have a pleasant conversation?"
This time, it's Naruto's term to deadpan. "Is that an answer or a question?"
"Yare, yare, I never took you for the shy type…" Karasuba jokingly states, earning a scathing look from Yomi. The Black Sekirei's smile widen a little at the way Number 43 flush in irritation and wonder if she can provoke her to attack… Nah. Better not inquire Naruto's wrath. "You certainly can't take a joke, and people say I'm too serious."
"But you are…" Naruto answers, his face completely devote of any emotion just to emphasize that point. Karasuba arches one fine eyebrow at that, her smile widening even more before she shrugs her shoulders. "Seriously though… you are too serious."
"And you're too lenient." Yomi blurts out before gasping in trepidation. She did not mean to say that…
When laughter greets her though, the poor Sekirei blinks wide, frightened eyes at Karasuba. Number 04 is clutching her side laughing her head off for some reason that completely escape Yomi. If it isn't because Yomi suspects Karasuba to be some psychopath, she'll be questioning her mental health at the moment. "Hehehehe… N-Naruto? Lenient? …BWAHAHAHAHAHA!"
"…I… do not get what is so hilarious at the moment." Yomi says slowly, completely and utterly lost as to how to answer that question. Still, shrugging it off, Yomi finishes her share of food before giving her thank for the meal. Seeing that lunch is pretty much finished, and that there isn't any point in linger within the store, Naruto waves a server over for the check, upon which Karasuba waves it off and instead walks off to pay for it at the counter. That makes Yomi wonders. "She seems to be in a pretty good mood… Don't tell me, some massacre happened somewhere?"
"Eh? No." Naruto answers easily, leaning against the chair's spine as he offers an easy smile. "If there was a massacre somewhere, she wouldn't be wondering the street. I personally do not care what it was, so long as it keeps innocent lives out of the equation. Though I do suspect it has something to do with some rumors of Ashikabis wanting to escape the city."
"Hmm, so you do know something…"
Turning around, Yomi blinks up at Karasuba's form before turning her attention back to Naruto. She has to stiffen a sudden at the way his blue eyes seemingly froze over while that easy smile still graces his lips. It then occurs to her just how easy she reads Naruto yet at the same time reads nothing. It is like he is secretly instructing her on something, but never truly doing anything. Not for the first time, Yomi concludes that Uzumaki Naruto is an enigma that can probably never be solved.
At least… she doesn't feel like she can… Where did that came from?
"Just rumors; it is something I wouldn't bother investigating." Naruto says with a shrug before pushing his chair back so he can stands up. The "yet" is easily detected, and Yomi wonders just what plans are being made by the blonde man at the moment. "Anyway, I hope you gave them a generous tip?"
"Of course." Karasuba just smiles and Yomi wonders just when the conversation was averted, or rather how easily it was done.
Beep-beep~~! Beep-beep~~! Blinking, Karasuba reaches for her cell phone, wonder who would call her at all. When she takes in the caller ID, the Sekirei's astonishment reaches a new level as she tries to come up with an idea of why Sahashi Takami of all people would contact her. Oh sure she's their adjustor and maintenance supervisor, but what could she possibly want now?
…Oh well, not her problem.
With that and a decisive motion, Karasuba ignores the call, and turns the power off. "Now then, where should we go?"
"Who was that?" Naruto asks, more curious than anything if the way his eyes twinkle is any indication. His companion also graces her with curiosity, and Karasuba has to ponder upon the possibility that Naruto is unconsciously molding a clone out of the girl. Nah…
"Just Takami. As to what she wants, I don't really care. She can yell at me later, but now? I'm off duty."
"Since when were you off duty?" Yomi blurts out, and Karasuba applauds her courage, or would that be stupidity? Whatever. Usually, Sekireis that know who she is trembles in fear, but then they always put up a false bravado and a false hope in that they can defeat her. It annoys her really how much they hope for. She can take down a damned army, and they hoped to defeat her? Hmph, it's simply pathetic.
Now this one though…
Maybe it is Naruto's presence, maybe it's because she's officially out of the S Plan, or maybe it's something else. Whichever the case, Karasuba is feeling a very TINY amount of appreciation to be treated somewhat… normally. The fear is still there, but it's being melted away slowly, and Number 04 feels somewhat grateful for another to join the small list (Minaka, Takami, Natsuo, Miya, Kazehana, Mutsu, Naruto, Yume, Musubi, and recently Minato – thought the last one probably couldn't count as he doesn't know who she is then) of people who can talk to her without trembling in fear or stuttering in terror. It also earns a small amount of grudging respect for poor little Yomi, who is really nothing compared to her full might, and certainly insignificant next to Naruto. It doesn't change the fact that Karasuba is still somewhat… content, because she just doesn't do happy.
Of course, Karasuba will voluntarily walks to Miya's and ask for a spanking than to ever admit it however, though knowing her, Miya will probably just cleave her in half right down the center (as that would effectively ensure a quick but messy death).
Oh that's right; she hasn't answered that question yet. "I was off duty since I invited Naruto and you to lunch. Back to my original question; where should we go? I'm in a mood to walk around right now."
In some random alley way…
She curses her luck as she finds barely escape another electrocution, though it did graze her enough that it slowed her ability down. Cursing for her stupidity in running into a place like this, the unwinged rolls behind a dumpster just as Hibiki demolishes a few aluminum cans scattered about. With a grimace, she leaps into action once more, keeping her center of gravity low as she speeds through the narrow route, hoping but knowing that there is little chance of her escaping unscathed. It is at moments like this that she thanks whoever gave her a petite and lithe body.
It still doesn't save her from being blasted full on from behind.
"Got you!" A triumphant Hikari exclaims with a smirk, and seeing that, the Unwinged forces herself onto her feet and once more dashes down the alley way and then immediately veered left upon finding an opening.
Once she did, the Unwinged can hear Hikari cursing before giving chase, her twin not too far behind… no wait, there is only a set of foot step. Where is the other one?
The apology registered too late as a vicious kick connects with her left flank, undoubtedly bruising or even cracking a few ribs if the excruciating pain that follows is any indication. Slamming head first into the wall doesn't help anything at all either. In her disorientation, the Unwinged just barely makes out Hibiki saying, "Umm, this really is for your own good, so please don't run anymore."
She decides there and then that the Twins suck at persuasion, let alone negotiation. If this is for her own good, she hates to see what they do to their enemies. Of course, they are not helping their cases by constantly attacking her. So far, they are not relenting on their attack as well, yet they are expecting her to just pipe down and quietly go with them?
A quick burst of speed, and then a grabbling technique here, a twist there, and then a throw sees Hibiki slamming into the wall off to the side, clearing an escape route. Not wanting to waste it, the Unwinged quickly dashes down it and into the open area… and right into a shopping center? Full of civilians no less, meaning more unnecessary work to avoid obstacles like that child asking for candy not too far away or that boyfriend escorting his girlfriend into a clothing store.
Anything and everything can go wrong here… This is turning out to be a nightmare.
How the hell… no, why the hell would a series of abandoned alley way lead to here of all places?!
"Che… she sure can run." Homura comments as he dashes after the Unwinged. While he has yet to make contact with the Twins, he isn't stupid or naïve to think that they given up. In all honesty, he expects them to get rid of him first as he has this rather distinct signature if one knows what to look for, but then they'll loose their prey.
Still, as the Fire Sekirei rushes into the shopping center, he curses his luck as well as the Unwinged's lack of strategies. This is truly turning out to be troublesome…
It really doesn't help at all when Hikari and Hibiki can fight much better in crowded area. Why is that? Because it's so easy to blend into the crowd, that it's easy to get behind the target. Also taking into account their power, it makes them the perfect tool for this kind of area. You don't need a large lightning bolt when a small zap the equivalent of a high voltage stun gun is enough.
No one will ever accuse Minato to be stupid. In fact, if there is one thing he is guilty of, it's probably the fact that while he holds a brain that many would kill for, he rarely puts it to good use. It is a fact that many does not notice, and for those that do, they sigh in exasperation quietly while forcing a smile whenever Minato humbles himself over his intelligence.
His mother is one of the latter, and it eggs her simply in the wrong way many times within her life. But that is beside the issue.
As it is mentioned, Minato is and never will be accused of being stupid; naïve maybe, and sometimes too optimistic or too kind, but never stupid. As such, one will expect him to not land himself in some situation that will be his undoing…
Of course, it is also a sad fact that Minato's luck is at best, questionable, and at worst, down right problematic. He has yet to get into a situation that he can't get out of thanks to his intelligence and his quick thinking ability as well as his mother's fierce "don't-cross-me" attitude and scary aura. He also has helped her sister countless times either out in the open or behind the scene, her homework being the former and her secret admirers that borderline on stalkers being the latter (and boy, does his mother has something to say to those stalkers). But that is where the good things tend to get out of hand. His lucks usually gets him involved in something that actually requires him think really fast or risk losing a part of his body.
He would readily count Musubi landing on him the first time as one of those incidents; not because she'll crush him of course, but because of the S&M Twins' lightning attacks that would probably fried some part of his body. Then again, he panicked, and he ran. End of story… As a bonus, he landed himself a hot girl… who then dragged him into this fighting tournament that leads him to Miya the scary (but loveable) landlady, Seo the scum-but-really-useful-guy, Kusano the ever delightful child, Matsu the pervert, Tsukiumi the Tsundere (who'll probably throw him through a few walls should he ever call her that), and Naruto the Mysterious. There are of course more, but that is way too off topic.
As said before, Minato is never accused of being too smart for his own good. He is however open to be accused of possessing a kind of luck that makes it look like Lady Luck made it while drunk.
Thus it might explain how he is once more dragged into an escape with another Sekirei from the S&M Twins that is Hikari and Hibiki.
Sahashi Minato once again curses his luck as he runs as fast as his feet allow him and the slightly limping Sekirei behind him can.
He is vaguely aware that Tsukiumi and Musubi is giving chase, but having little to no success seeing that the Twins are more adept at evading crowds.
Oh, that reminds him… He needs to get some more rice as Miya requested (thus explaining away Musubi's presence and Tsukiumi's seeing as the blonde refuse to "lose" to the brunette). Though how does that relate to him being in the mall?
"I… I'm really sorry about this." The Unwinged puffs out between her panting and a wince. Minato can only return a somewhat strained but sympathetic smile. Truthfully, he can't for the life of him forsake the Sekirei to whatever awaits her. His chivalry that was nearly literally bashed into his head (by his beloved mother) wouldn't let him do that. His conscience wouldn't let him do that. Of course, should his sister hear about this (which he doubt, but you never know), she'll never let him hear the end of it. As far as Yukari knows, Minato is a no-good, sloppy older brother that is dependent when he is needed. Knowing that he willingly forsakes a damsel in distress will shatter whatever respect she has for him, and it's hard enough that his mother doesn't hold him in a high regard as it is.
Of course, it goes without saying that Sahashi Minato does not understand just how much his mother care for him.
"Don't worry about it." Minato quickly ends any more attempts at apologies from the Sekirei. No matter how nice he is, he can only take so many apologies aimed at him before he snaps. After all, when each apology reminds him of his damned chivalry and rotten luck, he prefers to not think about it and simply do what is required of him.
In this case, he needs to run.
Was it some divine entity that likes to mock him? Or was it simply because he wasn't paying any attention to where he is going (because having two really smoking hot women arguing over you tends to do that to anyone's attention spam)? Whichever the case is the end results cannot be argued with.
He is here, running once more for his life.
He has with him an injured and most likely (with a 99.99999% chance of getting it right) unwinged Sekirei limping behind him.
His winged Sekireis are giving chase while a particular set of Sekireis are trying to (and failing somewhat miraculously, thank you Kami-sama for small favors) electrocute him.
He is running through a very dense crowd.
What else did he miss?
"Hmm? Yo, Minato. Fancy seeing you here!"
Oh, and of course, he just has to run into Naruto the Mysterious, who is accompanied by none other than Karasuba the Black Sekirei and… Isn't that the Sekirei Musubi eliminated while they rescue Ku-chan?
"AH! YOU!" And of course, the eliminated (or supposedly eliminated) Sekirei just happens to recognize him.
"K-Karasuba…" Let's not forget the injured and unwinged Sekirei recognize just who is appraising him with amusement clearly plastered on her face.
"What the…?! YOU?!" Twin shouts behind him alerts Minato to the fact that the Twin has caught up with him.
"Ara? Karasuba-sama!? What are you doing here?" And then there's Musubi.
"MINATO! AS YOUR WIFE I DEMAND THAT YOU LET GO OF THAT GIRL!" Ah, Tsukiumi's reaction is always rather faithful. Minato quickly wonder if that is a good thing or not, because he is seriously expecting to hear something similar for the rest of his life (assuming he live through the day… and the next one… and the one after that… you get the drift).
Now all they are missing is… "Stop right there. I will not allow you to… Huh… this is a complicated situation…"
Yup, the whole gang is here. Minato silently thanks whoever is looking out for him up there that Miya isn't present, because he thinks that he couldn't possibly take her hastily drawn conclusion at this moment.
Inside a certain "secret" room in the Izumi Inn…
"You know… Mina-tan is really lucky with the ladies, and seemingly ready to snatch another Sekirei. But his luck only goes that far…"
"Hmm… I must say Matsu, I agree with you. Shame I'm not there to make it worst. But then again, Karasuba and I in the same vicinity never seem to end well."
"Don't forget Naru-tan."
"Oh yes, can't forget him. He'll sooner bend us over his knees than let us settle our issues." A pause… "Maybe I should go there just to see Karasuba gets herself into trouble."
"…Miya-than, that is very mean of you, and why you are very scary."
"Ohoho, a widow must have some way to entertain herself, ne? Now hush. I want to see how Homura handles this."
Having decided that the time is right, Homura has leap from his perch on the top of a sky scraper and landed as light as a feather next to the Twins. Straightening, the Flame Sekirei shouts, "Stop right there. I will not allow you to…" Then he notices the company that is within his immediate torching range, causing him to trail off as he blinks owlishly at the gathering of… Well, rag-tag is the best he can come up with in his shock-induced trance. It is thus he mumbles, "Huh… this is a complicated situation…"
The joke from Miya about spilling ramen suddenly comes into his mind, and oddly Homura is really glad that they are not near any ramen shop. Why? Don't ask him. Asama Miya is the one that puts the thought in his head. Still, Homura swears, and that means SWEARS that the landlady is currently having fun at his very expense.
"…You know, somehow I feel like this will happen regardless of what we do…" Hikari sudden says, breaking the strain silence that everyone is only partially aware of, but never commented on it. Hibiki laughs nervously as she scratches her cheek with a finger, easily agreeing with her sister because she always has this feeling that something or someone will come and disrupt their plan. The "someone" part started when they run into Sahashi Minato. The "something" appears to be starting now.
"Ah, it's the perverted lady." Musubi supplies happily, pointing a finger at Yomi. The unintended jab (because no matter how you look at it, Musubi will never purposely insult another) turns Yomi's face red in a mixture of rage and embarrassment; rage because she is not a pervert, and embarrassment because Naruto has turn to award her a raised eyebrow.
"I'M NOT PERVERTED YOU BIG BREASTED WOMAN!"
Tsukiumi groans as she slaps a hand to her face, saying, "Geez, you don't have to remind Musubi of her breast size you know? I am very glad at the moment that she isn't some pompous girl because of it."
"Musubi being pompous? Ma, now that I would like to see." The Black Sekirei muses while stroking her chin, making all but two Sekireis flinch as if expecting her to unleash some hell upon them within instance. Homura is more controlled of his own reaction to it, knowing that she's not going to just openly massacre everyone… yet. MBI has a reputation to keep, and having one of their staff suddenly slaughtering people in the middle of the street is not wise.
"Ano… What should I do?" Minato asks no one in particular, one hand scratching the back of his neck nervously while his eyes dart left and right. The calculating glint within them is very obvious and oddly similar to the ones easily found in Minaka's, but unlike the director's they lack the edge of insanity that often makes people shudder.
Naruto only chuckles half-heartily while shaking his head, as if appreciating some joke that only he knows of. It isn't too far from the truth though because no one seems to understand just what he is chuckling about.
"Ano…" A meek voice sounds off from the middle of the group, bringing everyone's attention onto the battered and worst-for-wear Unwinged that is still clinging onto Minato's hand. Seeing everyone's gaze upon her, the Sekirei gulps down her fear and asks, "So what happens now…?"
The question easily brings back the tense silence that was so easily dispelled by Hikari not too long ago. It also brings about a very tense atmosphere as everyone sizes everyone up as a possible opposition. Of course, most of the sizing tends to land on Karasuba, but instead of calculating the chance of success, most is calculating the chance of survival, never mind escape.
During all this, Homura continues to think that Miya knows, or at least suspect some of what MIGHT happen. In fact, he bets that she's watching at this very moment. As if to answer him, his phone suddenly rings, turning everyone's attention to him. Feeling a twitch by his eye brow, the man reaches into his pocket, takes out his phone, checks the caller ID, lets out a sigh, answers, and says, "You knew…"
"Ara, that's not a nice thing to say Homura-san."
"Must you…?" Homura groans into the phone, trying his very best to ignore the curious gazes from everyone. Of course, it doesn't help when Naruto is giving him this knowing look. "Are you going to help out?"
"Hmm… I'm not sure how I'll be able to help. Besides, even with Matsu here, I can't exactly just rush to your location now can I? We don't want to give MBI a reason to move."
Suppressing another groan, Homura warily eye Karasuba, understanding the landlady's concern. Still… "If not, then why are you calling me? As you can see, and I KNOW you're seeing thanks to… Tell her to stop that insisting giggling please. It grates on my nerve."
"Hai, hai." The person on the other line says, before it is accompanied by a horrified squeak, then silence… Then, "Well, there. Anyway, you mind giving the phone to Naruto-san?"
"…Huh?" Homura makes out just barely before owlishly blinking at Naruto. The blonde must have understood something because he holds out an expectant hand. Karasuba next to him sudden glares up into the sky at what Homura is sure the MBI satellite is, and Minato follows not too far behind, a grimace upon his face and an exasperated look in his eyes. Of course, how can he forget?
The answer to this is very simple: Matsu.
Handing the phone over to Naruto, Homura watches as the blonde simply start conversing rather naturally, as if he isn't surrounded by aliens that can turn the entire block into a freaking battle ground. Mentally shrugging it off as either insanity or simply not caring, Homura turns his attention to Yomi, whom according to Takami has been missing ever since Sekirei 108 was rescued by Minato. Apparently Naruto in involved in her disappearance, thus prompting Homura to turn his attention back to the mysterious blonde. Someone like that is best keep in the radar, especially considering the fact that he is with Karasuba when they run into each other, thus making Homura believes that he at least once associated with the original Disciplinary Squad if Miya's familiar attitude is any hint at all. It also explains a little about why Matsu seemed wary of him.
Then that train of thought causes other questions to pop out. Things like what does he know about the S-Plan to why is he keeping an eliminated Sekirei to how does he keep evading MBI notice for some long run through Homura's head as the Flame Sekirei openly stares at the man. Said man is in a sort of witty banter with his beloved (and scary) landlady, much to the amusement of some. The others are currently bickering over one thing or another, for example, Yomi is trying to taunt Musubi into a fight while Hikari and Hibiki is quietly hissing at Tsukiumi, who's only eyeing the Unwinged with a wary expression. Said Unwinged is bemused as to what to do with herself, being trapped between the twins and Karasuba with the Black Sekirei humming a nameless tune while idly caressing her now exposed katana's handle.
Just then, Homura is brought out of his musing by Naruto saying, "You know, I think I'm a bad influence to you if you're actually suggesting something like that… Whatever makes you suggest that in the first place? …Yes, I am sure now that I'm a bad influence to you… Well, if you are sure… Just so you know, what you're asking of me is going to put me in an annoying position… Right, I'll drop by to visit soon. Later." The blonde finishes as he hangs up the phone, too fast for Homura to protests, but never really finding a valid reason to do so. Even though, he still holds out a hand to ask for the phone back, which Naruto easily relinquish the holds of.
"Ara, ara, what does the Death Goddess want now?" Karasuba sudden asks, not even waiting for Naruto to return the phone to Homura. Despite him being a little wary, the Flame Sekirei also can't help but wonder what was asked of the blonde man. He is almost tempted to call back to Miya to ask what crazy scheme is cooking in her head.
"Hmm… let's just say that someone is asking a little much of me, but nothing that I can't do." Naruto answers, his eyes shining in amusement as he tilts his head back to stare at the sky.
"Ano… Naruto-san?" Minato sudden makes himself known again as he lightly scratches his head and Homura has to wonder what makes the boy stay when he can simply walk away. As if reading his thoughts, his self-proclaimed rival Tsukiumi blinks once, twice, then asks, "Minato-kun… why are we still here when we could of left a while ago?"
She can't help it when she feels like that her life has gone to hell.
Oh sure, her life is probably already in hell when she was put inside a laboratory, but if she is to be very honest with herself, that room is much more preferred than the place she is at.
She is sore, she is hungry from all the running and dodging, and now she's edgy because the Spear Point of the Disciplinary Squad is standing not three yards away from her. If all the statistics and abilities as well as records are to be believed, then it wouldn't even take Karasuba a second to severe her head from her body. Despite knowing that Karasuba really has no reason to do that and that she herself has yet to violate any rules, it doesn't settle the anxiety that clutches at her heart.
Worst of all, it seems that she must choose from the several unknowns that is currently surrounding her.
As her silver eyes dart from one party to the next, the Unwinged Sekirei lightly chews on her lower lip as she tries to come up with a decision as to where to head to.
She can go with Karasuba back to MBI where she may get medical treatment, assuming that she isn't forcefully winged by the order of the Director. Supposedly the head of the Sekirei Research Sahashi Takami wouldn't let that happen, but it's a risk that she wouldn't take if she can help it.
She can go with the infamous Twin to see just what it is that they plan to do with a captured Unwinged. The two and their Ashikabi have built quite the reputation within the Sekirei circle, and there must be a good reason behind their actions.
She can go with the Flame Sekirei that is widely known as the Guardian of Sekireis. With him, she can at least be safe for a while, though how long is unknown and just where she can find some peace and quiet is also unknown to her.
She can try and find some shelter with the Ashikabi that she fortunately run into. He is kind as far as she knows, and having two Sekireis means that he has some power. The saying "there is safety in number" applies beautifully in this situation, and if it can be applied to her, then she will gladly accept him as her Ashikabi despite her not reacting to him.
She could go with HIM!
Yes… he is special…
"Will you look at this? This is quite the gathering!" A boyish voice suddenly calls out, and everyone instantly turns their attention to the owner to find a teenage boy with the biggest grin that is legal. There is a happy glint in his eyes that makes her uneasy, and then there is the strange man walking beside him that gives her a bad vibe. It is similar to Karasuba, except it's more… earthly as compare to Karasuba's hollowness?
"Mutsu, this is such a surprise." Karasuba intones cheerfully with a smirk and the unwinged blinks as she tries to remember where she heard that name before. The blonde man, Naruto if she remembers correctly from all the talking going around also turns around with an eyebrow raised.
"Mutsu, you know her?" The boy, for he acts more like a boy than a teen, asks as he rudely points at Karasuba. The man identified as Mutsu nods silently, though his eyes are focused on Naruto instead. "Hey, is she available?"
"I'm afraid not. She is the Spear Point of the Disciplinary Squad, and as such, she was winged quite early." Mutsu explains formally, his eyes never once leaving Naruto for some reason.
"Oh… That's too bad. I would like to add her to my collection." Ugh… that statement instantly makes the unwinged realize that she will not go with him. "What about the one that looks rather beat up?"
"…I do think she's available."
"Really? Hmm… all we need is some clothing and a bath and of course some ointment."
"I will not allow you to forcefully wing anyone." The Flame Sekirei growls out as he takes a step forward, though it only seems to incite some unnecessary retribution as two Sekireis drop down next to the boy, each wearing a grin on their face and brandishing their respective weapon.
"You should stay where you are. You can wait your term to be winged. At this moment, I'm more interesting in that one." The boy says rather smugly, his nose held high as if he is untouchable. He seems to believe that too if the exasperated eye roll from Mutsu is any indication. "Now then…"
"Mikogami…" Naruto finally speaks, having the effect of once more catching everyone's attention quickly. There is just something about the way he speaks that makes people listen. "I would suggest that you leave this one along."
"And who might you be to tell me what to do?" The boy asks without a hint of manner as he glares openly at the older blonde. Naruto in turns just raise an eyebrow at the behavior while Karasuba chuckles good-naturally. Not sure what is so funny, the unwinged takes a look around to see everyone's reaction. Other than the Ashikabi she ran into, the others all have various range of excitement printed on their faces. That she understands, seeing that she herself is a little excited at the tension that is building in the air. Of course, remembering her rather battered body, the silver-eyed Sekirei decides that perhaps right now is not the best time for a fight, and as such slowly drags the kind Ashikabi away. "I do not have to answer to the likes of you. Besides, since you know what I am, I would suggest that you treat me with the respect I deserves!"
It is Mutsu who answers him with, "Mikogami-sama, I would suggest that we do as he says… Besides, she's already sneaking away."
…Son of a freaking…
"HEY! WHERE ARE YOU GOING?! AKITSU, CATCH HER!"
"Of course master." A voice calls out from beside her ears, and she whips her head around to stare into the emotionless eyes of a Sekirei with the crest upon her head. This one she knows instantly who it is, because there is only ONE of such Sekirei. That piece of information is enough to send her into near panic. "I am sorry, but master wants you to stay."
"Karasuba, run intercept without killing. Yomi, stay close to Minato."
"Hai, hai!"/"Why do I have to go to him?"
For a second, time seems to freeze, and if there is a mirror, the unwinged is quite sure that should she look into it, her face would be a sight to laugh at with how she freezes in astonishment.
Still, one second is all it needs for hell to break loose as she learns today.
It appears that her earlier sentiment about how it's all going to hell is correct, because when two swords are drawn simultaneously and ice starts to creep up her legs while water crashes into the street with lightning arcing everywhere, Sekirei Number 81 Kinkou, the Reversal Sekirei wonders if this is karma for something she done.
If she live through this, and it appears to be a very big "if" at the moment, she will kiss the nearest human of the male species regardless if he is or isn't her Ashikabi. If that means she can off herself and take herself out of the S-Plan, then so be it.
Author's little corner:
Eh… What is there to say? I personally think it could be better, but I don't know how. Writer's block isn't really the issue. School isn't hindering it too much… Maybe I'm just dividing my attention a little too far, stretching them a little too thin.
Or maybe my inspiration is just dying… In that case, more reading might be able to solve it.
Still, do tell me what you think. I personally think that this chapter is sort of a needed bridge; otherwise, I can't do what I want to do without making it too awkward. In fact, this chapter is awkward enough as it is. Ugh, talk about trying to make it perfect only to end up crashing it. I personally find it ironic how when I try to make it to please people, I tend to screw up and when I simply write because I feels like it, I do it just fine. Oh well, I suppose I should just write for fun.
That doesn't mean reviews aren't appreciated. In fact, critics are welcome and any constructive comments will help me improve. Just keep the lid on your temper yes? Sometimes asking too much can cause the opposite to happen.
Well, that is that. Hope you enjoys this little update and that I will see you sooner rather than later.
APH signing out for the day/night.