The Birth of a Kouhei A Story of the Sailor Kouhei By Lisa Prior

The shadows moved steathfully through the darkened house. The orders were to silence the family. None were to be left alive. They would be an example, one that clearly said, do not try the master. First to die was the master of the house and his wife. They were taken quickly and silently, twin thrusts of shining silver that left behind blossoms of crimson on the ivory sheets. Next the assassins moved to the rooms of the eldest children. The Eldest son awoke before the kill could be made and there was a scuffle before he was brought down with two daggers sprouting from his throat. The middle son managed to reach his window before he too was taken down.

It was the youngest child that they could not find. The little daughter. She was reported to be just six years old. A shy and quiet child, she was expected to be a simple kill but she was not where she was supposed to be.

The child in question was in fact at the moment staring horrified from her hiding place. She had slipped into her parents room just before the strangers in black had entered the room. Clutching her stuffed bear tightly, she stifled her cries of terror into his soft fur as she saw the blades flash in the moonlight.

The moment seemed to last forever to her young eyes. The swords moved slowly, so slowly she felt she could reach out and stop them but she was too afraid. Once the dark shadowed forms left the room she stepped out of the closet and reached out a trembling hand to touch her mother. "Mama-san?" She shook her mother softly, whispering again. "Mommy? Mommy wake up, what did the bad men do?"

Her young mind refused to accept that her mother could no longer answer her. She shook her harder, crying little sobs. When her mother's face rolled toward her, she froze. There was nothing in her mother's face and her eyes would not open.

Hana froze as she heard her brother Kenji let out a scream, his 12 year old voice breaking in the middle of it. Eyes growing wider in fear, she tip toed to the door and looked out. She gasped as she saw him lying sprawled on the carpet of the hallway.

When the shadows came out of her brother Kei's room she was halfway down the hallway. She heard the soft scuffle of the slippered feet like it was a doom knell and she ran forward. They were blocking her way but in her fear she didn't stop. She ran past them, as they seemed to stand still. They did not make a move to stop her. Once she was down the stairs she headed out into the night, not looking back, not knowing where to go but knowing she could not go back.

Hana came shuddering out of the nightmare once more. She made not a sound, she rarely did but to those who could see, there was old terror and pain in her eyes. She looked about to be sure she was not back in her old home and then sighed. She was in one of her favorite hiding places. A small closet she had found in an abandoned room of the complex. Not even Draco knew it existed.

Reaching out a slender hand, she dropped her fingers on the dusty softness she knew rested there. Lifting it to her cheek, she rubbed her old, battered teddy bear to herself. It was her only link to her past, other than the nightmares.

Sighing she put it back into the deep shadows and got up. She looked down at the luminous dial of the watch Jai had insisted she wear. It was nearly 3 am. Though it was the middle of the night, she knew she had slept all she could for a while and she slowly opened the door to her hideout, making sure she was alone with a light mind search. A slight smile lifted the corner of her pale lips and she slipped out and returned to the main halls of the complex.

Brushing her fingers along the doors to the rooms she peeked into the minds of the sleepers. They were all resting for once. Even Matten's nightmares where quiet at this time. As much as the man scared her, Hana was beginning to understand him, even trust him a tiny bit.

She drifted to the wall as she felt the presence of the team's leader. She looked at him as he came around the corner, hiding any reaction as best she could to being near the powerful man. Though she did her best to hide it, it was clear she was still frightened of all men.

Jaeoh frowned as he spotted Time standing like a ghost in the hall outside the team's bedrooms. He quickly hid it, not wanting to frighten the shy team member. "You should be in bed, Hana."

The girl shrugged, hiding her face behind her hair. "I'm not sleepy," she said softly.

"We have an early meeting tomorrow. I expect you to be there, awake and alert."

Once more the girl shrugged. "Have I ever been otherwise?"

The team leader shook his head. "No, Hana, you haven't. Good night." He walked off, leaving the pale, wraith-like girl to her own company once more.