A/N: you guys must have noticed that is being such a b*tch these couple of days. Isn't it irritating? _ Good Lord. I've been itching to update and this comes! And then I couldn't connect to the net for about a week or so. Damn it.
*clears throat* anyway, let's forget that for the time being. Sorry for the late update.
Azureian-san – thanks a lot! I'm glad you liked it. ^^ and of course I will continue with this one. XD
RealityBitez-san – yup, Lal in a dress is just going to happen in fics like this. XD thanks for leavin' a review!
Applestoapples-san – I'm sorry I couldn't do as you say… but here it is! I updated. T_T sorry it was late…
stormypeach1396-san andSushiBomb-san – I did have second thoughts on that reborn-tried-lal thing, although the utter OOC-ness of it made me do it. HAH. XD I can't believe I really wrote that. Thanks for leaving a review!
"It must be hard; bearing all the responsibility."
Luce turned from the broken plate to the silken voice that spoke which is Fon. She smiled.
"I'd like to think that Verde is my stubborn son who's in the rebellious stage."
The Chinese martial artist chuckled lightly and knelt in one knee and picked up the shards of ceramic scattered on the wooden floor. "A stubborn son who does not want his mother's delicious risotto and has a habit of breaking plates; that's what he is."
Luce blushes lightly, flattered by the compliment. "Thank you."
"You're welcome." He rests the broken pieces of plate on his left sleeve and offers her his right hand. She takes it willingly and rises.
That was the first time Luce had a real conversation with any of the other seven, and to tell you the truth, it was one of the happiest days of her life.
The Arcobaleno's Storm guardian is Fon, a highly respected and talented martial artist hailing from China. While the title adorning his name does suit his attribute, his personality, oddly enough, contradicts it much to Luce's amusement. Irony does such peculiar things.
"I'd be glad to help you on the chores, if you don't mind." He says, and Luce breaks in to another smile.
The days with her guardians were much more bearable, for a lack of a better word, now that Fon is at her side. Her first born; yes, that would be appropriate. Fon is her first born child. She smiles.
Family is important for Luce. She grew up knowing how important it is to have them; how nice it is to feel that you belong somewhere and, even if it may sound cliché, to know that someone accepts you for who you are.
"I have an extended family," he narrated one day as they were strolling in the streets of Italy, "We make tofu for a living. We don't earn much, but it was enough for us. Three generations live in one old large house; sometimes it's chaotic, rarely peaceful, but always amusing." Luce nods. She understands.
"I have eight brothers and a little sister," he says gleefully, perhaps recalling memories. "Since I'm the second youngest; I was assigned to take care of her. She always starts the childish fights between us siblings." He pauses for a second and then smiles, "It kind of reminds me how the rest of the Arcobaleno quarrels all the time."
Luce laughs. "I couldn't agree more." Fon smiles wider and soon enough, he chuckles as well.
"Luce?" for a split second she hears his voice coated with panic as she stumbles backwards from the pain in her tummy. He catches her just in time, preventing her from falling completely. "What's wrong?"
"It's… it's just the baby." She smiles weakly, beads of sweat forming almost immediately on her forehead. "It's alright… I-I'm okay." The last word escapes from her lips roughly, making the storm guardian frown.
"Rest for a while." He tells her gently, steering her to a nearby bench. She abides.
"I think it is best for us to go home, Luce." He suggests much to her disappointment.
"But we've come so far!" The Giglio Nero boss replied in between her breathing exercises. "We haven't even bought half of the ingredients –"
"The ingredients can wait. The boss is on the top of our priorities after all." He smiles, calm as ever.
Luce frowns. "Don't give me that, Fon."
He laughs lightly. "I'm sorry. Does it still hurt?"
Luce blinks. "Oh…No, I'm alright now… it's just the occasional kicks."
"I see." He nods.
"We're not going home yet, right…?"
'Can I ask you a favour, Fon? I'll be leaving for a check-up this afternoon, you see. Can you, say, watch over your fellow guardians for me?'
Yes, of course.
Fon remembers the words of agreement he gave Luce.
"Shut up, Verde. You stay away from my stuff or I'll blow away your life and your life's work within a snap, you hear me?"
"As if you could think of such a way to end my existence."
Lal's eyebrow twitched as she stood up, knocking her chair backwards. "Would you like to see me try?"
"Come on, Lal. So what if Verde looked at those secret files of yours? It's not like the world would end if he did." Reborn casually said, making Lal's anger level rise.
"Secret files are called secret for a goddamned reason, Reborn."
"If you could have thought of hiding it in a much secure place, maybe he wouldn't have found it in the first place."
"I hid it in a fucking safe surrounded by lasers and infrared detectors." Lal retorted.
"They don't call me genius for nothing." Verde smirked. Reborn only shrugged his shoulders.
It's these kinds of conversations that usually signal another loud, dangerous and deadly fight, courtesy of the three (and when Reborn is in the mood to piss Skull off, four,) not so young Arcobalenos. Fon sighed. He doesn't know if he could keep that promise to Luce any longer.
(Soon enough, Reborn gets in to the mood of arguing and Skull joins in.)
"You'll never be able to stop them," Viper tells him as the illusionist hovered a few inches off the ground. He pulls a few hundred euros from nowhere and held them up. "Wanna bet?"
Fon sighs, once again. "No, thank you."
"Muh." Viper frowns, very much disappointed and hides the treasured money. "Good luck on trying."
The martial artist smiled even though the statement sounded more mocking than assuring. "…Thank you."
The raven haired man stepped beside the battlefield and well, prayed to the gods to give him strength.
"Now," he began with a silken and smooth voice, "Don't start another fight, you guys. I'm sure Verde had some reason why he did borrow your files, Lal."
"He stole it from me, Fon." The COMSUBIN Commander corrected.
"I gave it back to you!" Verde exclaimed, voice rising a bit higher than usual.
"That doesn't change a damned thing!"
"Shh," he tries to hush them and they do, for a moment. "We won't get any where if we continue raising our voices at each other. Calm down. Breathe in –"
"Even if I told you the reason why I stole your useless papers, your puny brain won't even comprehend it."
"YOU SON OF A –"
After a few gunshots and another few words from Reborn to fuel Lal's (and Skull's) annoyance, chaos ensued.
"I told you so." Viper mumbled, making Fon smack his palm on to his face. "Well, if you need me, prepare a fee. I'll be in my room." the hooded figure floated away like a ghost, looking like he didn't care about the destruction the four are currently bringing upon their humble abode.
Fon felt like a dozen of sighs and facepalms aren't enough to express the utter failure of his attempt to pacify his fellow Arcobaleno members. Maybe that calming ability of his just isn't enough to cool the four hotheads down.
Good thing he didn't agree on that bet with Viper.
Fon makes the most marvellous tofu in the whole world; Luce's sure on that. But when tofu's mixed with chilli flakes and spicy bean paste, it's a different story.
Luce will never forget the day her palate hit that orange red creation.
"Wh –" Skull coughs multiple times, almost falling out of his seat as he tried to clear the food out of his throat.
"What on earth is this thing?" Verde grabbed his glass of water after the statement and drank it down in one go.
Lal choked and spat on the floor.
"I'm gonna have to charge you because you made me eat something inedible." Viper wiped his mouth with a table napkin.
"I never knew this could even be spicier." Reborn eyed the ginger colored substance on his spoon and smirked.
Luce glanced at the storm guardian. "Dear? What kind of dish is this, again?"
"Mapo Doufu."* He answered, unsure whether to smile or to start apologizing.
The pregnant boss smiled wider than the Cheshire cat.
Luce enjoys long walks on the seaside.
But after a certain incident, she began to think otherwise.
"Stay here." He says in a hushed voice which made her shudder with trepidation. She instinctively clutches on to his red sleeves and he smiles that same refreshing grin.
"It's alright Luce." He squeezes her hands. "Just stay here and I'll get you when it's all over."
"But Fon, the guns –"
"Bullets won't hurt if they don't hit." He says playfully as he lets go of her hand. "Wait for me."
A gasp escapes from her lips as he treads away. Her breath completely ditches her when gunshots started ringing in the air. She never expected to encounter another attack from their enemies. Well, not so soon from the last one, at least.
"Who sent you?" Luce hears him ask a few minutes later, and she jerks from the unusual coldness in his tone. A man laughs at the statement and another batch of gunshots was heard. Luce began to feel anxious.
"Answer my question."
There was something odd and terrifying in those words; words which Fon would never say. Maybe she just didn't hear that right.
"I do not wish any harm," he states again, that same kind tone hinted with threat. "Please."
And their reply was gunshots, once more. Luce jerked from the noises. Concerned about the storm guardian, she takes a risk and takes a small peek from her place.
One by one, the enemies fell to the ground, their weapons almost useless against the storm Arcobaleno. The men on the ground had their limbs impossibly twisted, while the other five left were darting their eyes from place to place, not having any clue to where Fon would attack next. The gunshots were non-stop; almost sounding desperate to wipe off their prey. But Fon remains fast and unafraid; he swiftly glides past every attack like the wind that he is.
"Fon," Luce calls out; breathless and terrified at the sight before her. There was no hesitation in his eyes as he broke the neck of that man who laughed at him earlier. Those cracking sounds it gave out made her heart rate double from the second it hit her ears.
"No!" she shouts and Fon must have heard her for he hesitated to attack the other two remaining men. He changed his mind and twisted their arms, rendering them useless and unable to use their guns.
The two screeched in pain and fell to the ground whimpering and muttering curses about him. He exhaled and turned to Luce.
Luce stared back at him with disbelief glazed in her eyes. That murderous spark in Fon's orbs chilled her; she could feel the light trembling of her knees from the shock.
The raven haired man's look softened as he approached her. "I'm sorry."
She exhales that breath she was holding. She notes a stain of blood peeping from his sleeves and takes her handkerchief to press on the bullet wound.
Drips of crimson fall to the ground, staining the sand.
Luce evokes a smile and to Fon, it felt like forgiveness.
"Let's go home, dear."
"I was in love."
He tells her and she listens as she sewed the cut she made after she had taken the bullet out of his arm.
"We first met when I was six. It was when my father had been contracted to deliver tofu for her family's business, if I remember clearly. We immediately became friends, after that."
Luce nods, running the needle in to his skin and he lightly flinches.
"Li Xue was her name." he says in a soft tone, "We virtually grew up together. She was a good friend but I…"
"You eventually fell in love with her," She finished for him as she prepared some bandages.
"Yes," he replied, smiling. "It was silly of me to ask her hand in marriage when we were sixteen, but her reply surprised me."
Luce slowly wrapped the bandages on his injured arm. "She agreed?"
The Giglio Nero boss' eyes grew. "You're married, Fon?"
The martial artist's expression formed into that of a sad one, but still adorned with that light smile. "Her parents did not approve of me, since my family is of poor upbringing. So I promised her that I would work and come back for her, with enough money to satisfy her parents.
There was an underground fight in Hong Kong back then," He stated while Luce finished wrapping the bandages on his arm, "Bosses of the underworld from different parts of China, Hong Kong, and even Japan would come there and bet on 'horses' that would fight for them in these so-called death matches. You could say it's similar to those of the matches that occurred in the Coliseum in Rome."
I didn't have many options back then, so I decided to participate in those matches, since my grandfather taught me how to fight thru Kung Fu when I was a child. I fought for the Sun Yi Oh* Triad family. For two years I worked for them and when I had enough money, I came back for Li Xue."
I still remember how exhilarated I was when I ran in the streets of my hometown, carrying a bag full of money." He said, pain hidden in his tone. "But she didn't wait for me like she promised."
"She already married someone else."
Luce felt the ache pricking her eyes as her storm guardian continued.
"I could have accepted it if she… she had been married to a good man," He says, the agony of lost love seeping through his voice. "I abandoned everything else just for her and this was all I got." He shook his head and exhaled. "I was so foolish to throw away everything for love."
"Oh Fon…" The Giglio Nero boss frowned and stroked his hair like a loving mother. The martial artist touched Luce's hand and conjured a smile, though sorrow was still mirrored in his wood colored eyes.
"Don't you think so too, Luce?"
"Not at all," she answers truthfully, "Love makes us blind, after all."
Luce is the Sky and Fon is her Storm.
"Hmm?" Fon blinks as he smoothens out the creases on his bag.
"I will name my daughter Aria, to match your name."
"That would be an honour." He laughs lightly. "But why?"
"Because I want her to be calm and collected; just like you!" This earned another heartily laugh from the storm guardian.
"So this is farewell, huh…" she asks in her now tiny childish voice.
"Unfortunately," Fon answers, his own now a bit higher than that of his original tone. "Take care of yourself, Luce." He says as he lifts his bag onto his shoulder.
"You should too," she answers and rubs her tummy unconsciously. "Send me postcards if you have time."
The storm laughs once again, still amused about the Arcobaleno boss' unusual liking to the said item. "Alright."
"Goodbye, dear friend."
Fon halted as he heard the word. "It doesn't have to be tha –"
But then he realized what that solemn look in his boss' eyes meant and he understood immediately.
He smiles with an emotion only the part of the rainbow would understand and he bows deeply.
She smiles back, but it was a happy one. "It is I who should thank you."
And so with a final nod, Fon strides away.
*Mapo doufu or mapo tofu is Fon's fave food. It's a very spicy dish with tofu as its main ingredient.
*Sun Yi Oh is actually Sun Yee On, one of the most powerful triad family in China and Hong Kong. If you're not familiar with it, they're kind of the Chinese version of the mafia. Google it if you like.
*Aria means 'Air' in Italian.
I wanted to add some more details, especially about I-pin and her relations with Fon but I'm too lazy to write so yeah… *is shot* XD
I also tried an unlikely 'past' on Fon. He's just the type that at one glance, you wouldn't guess that he's such a broken-hearted bitter dude. I dunno why I did this... He's just giving me that kinda vibes…hmm. Or maybe it's just me. what do you guys think? Kinda sucks? Lemme know, 'kay? XD
Anyway, thanks for reading!