They were all gone. My friends, my comrades from UQ Holder, even Kitty. I was the only one left. Thanks to a one second miracle, Negi broke free from the Eternal Empathetic and used a prototype time machine to send me back in time to fix everything. Now I am ready. Now I am worthy of Evangeline McDowell. Now I am ready. Now I am ready to free my ancestors from their prisons!
Several minutes have passed since the battle ended. I had to dive back into the converging waters to spare Karin from the literal tons of ocean crashing down on her unconscious person. After achieving this task, I began flying through the dark and murky sky, trying to get above the clouds, the ones that didn't vanish from our battle, so I could enjoy the last remnants of sunlight and let my clothes dry.
I held the girl in my arms, as nude as she was the moment she was born, my last attack absolutely obliterating all the cloth the covered her figure. Flushed faced, I broke through the clouds, clothes soaked through. This is bad. I thought, mind racing. This is very, very bad.
First: in my arms, was a beautiful, well-endowed teenage body of a female, her mouth slightly ajar and eyes closed in what appeared to be slumber. My mind, heart, and soul belong to Kitty but in the name of every single god I knew, this was too tempting! I mean, her modesty is in plain view! I immediately tried to message Kitty via telepathy to beg her for the pair of spare clothes she promised me. Obviously, it didn't work, being half-way around the world and all. Of course it doesn't work! I thought, exasperated, doing everything but throwing my arms up in the air. Speaking of which, that sounded like a good idea. Might as well, I can't take this anymore. Banishing all impure thoughts from my mind, I tossed UQ Holder's Number 4 into the air, shedding my blazer and long sleeve shirt underneath. Her body dropping through the blue expanse, I stretched the blazer out and caught her bridal style, wrapping it around her upper half and sparing my eyes. As for her bottom half, I wrapped the undershirt around her hips and tied the sleeves tight, careful not to drop my 'senpai'. It wasn't perfect and her butt was still uncovered but, at the very least, her modesty was out of sight.
Second: there was no way that our battle did not go undiscovered. The ocean was split if half for crying out loud! We needed to leave quickly before authorities sent boats and choppers to investigate. Well, boats were not an issue since we were above the clouds, but it would be bad news if a helicopter came above the clouds and saw us, as little a chance it was. With this in mind, I started to speed in the direction of our HQ, staying above the cloud line.
Lastly: in my anger, I forgot about the seals on my back and simply struck with the necessary force. Much to my relief, they were just fine. Must have been the Holy Light I absorbed, since I was mostly using the magic that I brought into myself rather than using my own reserves. I checked over the ring that was on my finger. My heart stopped at the sight of the circular ornament.
It had a crack in it.
Somehow it must have gotten damaged during Karin's onslaught. This meant that my energy could be sensed by anyone in the vicinity that was knowledgeable about magic. This had to be fixed as soon as possible.
I quickly spun around in time to see a shadow moving behind the clouds. Dammit! They are already here? How? No…more importantly, I have to get away. I can't afford to fight here, no matter if is someone from Ialda's side or not.
I started going even faster, trying to escape my pursuer. I went at this speed for quite a while, but the presence behind me did not fade. In fact…
…it was getting closer.
This could not go on. Karin was not in fighting shape and I could not afford to bring my follower to UQ Holder, otherwise, if my fears are true, the fight will be brought to my friends' doorway.
I began to whisper. "I am a phantom, a phantom of the night, a child of darkness. Phantom Presence." I felt the magic wrap itself around me when I finished the spell. This should stop whoever is behind me from seeing me and, as a plus, makes it easier for me to hide my presence. I used the same spell on Karin to keep her out of sight as well.
Confident that we were safe now, I stopped flying and simply hovered in place, hoping that whoever was behind us would pass us.
I didn't have to wait long before the figure was in view. Unfortunately, the figure wore a brown, tarp-like fabric the completely hid his/her face and features, looking like some Grim Reaper, only without the scythe. The figure was getting closer to us, going at a steady speed, careful to make sure that he/she would go unnoticed.
It suddenly stopped…right in front of me. Hoping this was just a coincidence, I held my breath, not once taking my eyes off of this person.
The individual looked around, trying to find the person it was supposed to be chasing, realizing that I had essentially vanished. It began to float forward slowly, trying to find me. Does it know I am in the area? A scary thought came to mind. I need to leave. Now!
"Touta…" A voice said. Shocked and scared out of my wits, I looked down to see that Karin was peering at me, her eyes slightly open.
Realizing that the magic I cast did not stop our voices from being heard, I instantly looked up.
It was staring right at us, glaring at the invisible space we inhabited. Almost as if it could see us through my magic…
I felt threatened. That does it. I thought. This thing gotta go. It gotta go NOW!
Dropping the body in my arms, much to her displeasure, if her surprised scream said anything, I engaged the target.
Still wrapped in Phantom Presence, I lashed out at the hooded figure…who dodged my attack.
Annoyed, I tried a few more times to no avail. My earlier mood about not fighting was non-existent now. Before, this person heard Karin and looked in our direction. But that bad feeling in the air, the way it looked, it literally spoke bad intentions. Just like that I knew that this person was bad news. I could almost see some kind of dark aura surrounding this person. It reminded me of something I saw a long time ago…
I continued to strike at my opponent, the ghostly figure starting to retaliate. This person was strong and had brilliant technique. The blows were precise and I could really feel the force behind them. It was all I could do in my sealed state to dodge and deflect the attacks. This thing was also using the legs to kick at me and attempted to knee me in the gut. Not having any of that, I blocked it with my arm and made to grab it so I could perform a fancy throw but had to block a separate strike aimed at my head. The fight was so intense that my limbs were forced to redevelop several times as the individual's ferocity began to increase. How can this person know where I am, even though I can't be seen? And her accuracy with her attacks and blocks. Almost as if this person knows what I am about to do before I do it…
Getting tired of rough housing with this person, I began to change things up a bit. "Forma Fulgur." Lightning stuck to my skin, making it seem like I was a ball of human lightening to the mysterious individual.
I struck. Boom!
It blocked my lightening enhanced kick with the forearm. I didn't let up, attacking with the speed of a lightening bolt. She attempted to block and dodge some of them but my barrage was too fast for her to stop all of them.
Finally, I saw an opening.
I thrust my arm out and grasped the wretched cloth and yanked it off the individual, appearing a short distance away with garment in hand. Now to see who my assailant's identity. I thought as I turned to identify my attacker.
"…" I looked at the now evident female.
"…" She looked at me.
We gazed at each other for what seemed like a while. Then the character spoke.
"Judging by your turbulent thoughts, you already know who I am." It wasn't a question.
I dropped all magicks that I had active, revealing my form to my assailant.
"Just because I am a clone doesn't mean I don't contain some residual memories from my original… Nodoka Miyazaki."
"Well, here we are." I told Kuroumaru. We stepped out of the boat we used to reach our base of operations.
"It looks like a hot spring resort." He commented, taking in the vast surroundings and giving his impression.
"We manage hot springs resort here, so you aren't wrong." One of the grunts said. I knew his name but with everything that happened today, I could care less. "We call this place Fairyland Hall. Speaking of which, Mistress, shall I summon the others?"
"Might as well," I sighed. "I am going to have to see them sometime soon anyway so I might as well get it done as soon as possible." It took no time at all before everyone was summoned. I gave them a brief story as to my adventures with the boys, keeping some quite…classified…information to myself. "And with that, I will be sticking with you all for a while. Let us fight together to secure our dark clan enough room to live. All of you have done well these last few years. It will be a pleasure to be working with you again."
"Yes ma'am!" I nodded.
A sound reached my ears. Glancing over to see a few giggling faces and beads of sweat, I decided it was high time to make my escape.
"Now that I have returned, I shall retire to my room for the day. Carry out your duties faithfully!" I dismissed them, striding with precision and purpose to my bedchamber, much to their dismay. Sorry boys. I am lacking the mood to tolerate your childishness.
(Later that night)
I was lying face down on my mattress. I sat up in realization, feeling like I just woke up. Looking down at myself, the pills wore off and my original form was buried under the huge garments that were being worn earlier. I looked around my room for the alarm clock. I took in the red tapestries that surrounded my bed, covered by a black comforter, hiding sheets of red silk underneath. Funny how the sheets match the ring on my finger…
All of the blood in my body rushed to my face as I remembered the finest detail of that transaction. "Evangeline Athanasia Katherine McDowell." "I love you. I love you and always have." "Will you marry me?" "Yes."
I agreed to be his wife. I agreed to be his wife after he asked me to marry him. He is going to be my husband! He is mine!
It took all of my hundreds of years of faking, acting, intimidation, and so much more to stop myself from screaming like a high school girl who just got asked out to the prom by her crush. I hugged the nearest pillow to myself and tossed and turned on the bed, not believing all of the things that happened today, but so ecstatic that they did.
So many thoughts were in my head it was a miracle my brain wasn't fried. I have to make preparations for the wedding! Have to pick out a dress, find a suitable location, send official letters to everyone of UQ Holder and anyone who is still alive from my Academy days, claw the secrets that Touta wants hidden out of him so I can find out more about him, build up a more romantic relationship with him, order food, figure out transportation, have to find a cake, find out what Touta has planned for us, what our future will be like, what to name our kids…nonononononononononono!
My face heated up, repeatedly pounding my face into the soft pile of pillows I made in under a single millisecond to beat the images coming into my head.
Calming down, I stood up and walked over to the fabric hanging from the ceiling, reaching out and pulling it open. The rest of the room was black. Black walls, black rug, black Ladyboy chair, black 48-inch flat screen…and the damned alarm clock. Finally.
It was about 7 o'clock in the evening. I had slept through dinner. Oh well, I will have to grab something later. Deciding I needed to clean myself before the Touta and Karin returned with news of the victor, I laid bare my skin and started to stride to the adjacent bathroom, also black. Before I could reach it however, someone tried reaching me with telepathy. Must be them, I thought, feeling rather stupefied that the action occurred seconds after I thought of it. I welcomed the familiar magic into my mind, confirming it to be Karin. I take it the test went well? I inquired, hiding my anxiety. Yukihime-sama!
I immediately did a double take. This wasn't Touta, it was Karin! And she was in quite the state of distress apparently. What is it Karin? I asked, concerned for their safety. What has happened? I don't know. All I know is that one minute I am fighting Touta-sama and the next thing I know is that he is carrying me and we get ambushed by some mysterious figure who is appears able to pinpoint location despite being able to see them. What do you mean? I asked. Touta used invisibility magic to avoid us being seen by this person. He or she was wearing a cloak so I couldn't tell who it was, only that they have evil intentions. However, despite the invisibility magic, the cloaked individual was still able to pinpoint Touta-sama's location. I *cough cough* managed to escape unseen and am heading towards UQ Holder as we speak.
My mind was racing. An individual wearing a clock to hide their identity and invisibility magic rendered a waste of magical energy? The second part was not that out of the realm of possibility, many masters of their respective art could easily pinpoint the presence of someone. But the part of having evil intentions… Karin, what kind of aura did this person have? I asked, hoping against the worst, a cold sensation taking over my heart. …it was the darkest aura I have ever felt. It almost felt… mad.
Her thoughts were uneasy. This only made my own even more tempestuous. If it is who I think it is then I need to get to his side as soon as possible! Karin, listen to me carefully. I instructed her. I need you to turn around and go back to that battle. Yukihime-sama? I want you to keep this channel open as you head back to where Touta is. I will be tracking you and once you stop I will take that as my queue to use your shadow to bring myself over there. Then we can engage the target together. Yes, Yukihime-sama!
I started gathering the magic necessary and started preparations for the spell, my mind full of worry. Touta…please be okay.
"I see," Nodoka spoke, "It is possible for some residual memories to be transferred over during the cloning process. So you know about my identity, and seem to know a little bit of my powers."
I couldn't help but raise an eyebrow. "I seem? Why don't you try to read my memory and find out for certain?" Was my witty remark. She shrugged her shoulders nonchalantly in response, irking me.
"I could, but you aren't worth the trouble of using my artifact to its full extent."
"…I am sorry, would you mind passing that by me again? My ears haven't been working the best since you basically ripped them off." I cracked my neck and itched my newly regenerated ears, barely containing my anger.
She seemed to notice this and grinned, much to my further displeasure. "You are weak." She told me. "You are not worth using my artifact's full power on." So basically, until she brings out her artifact and opens it, she can't utilize the full powers of mind reading?
My knuckles were clenched white. So I don't stand a chance in my sealed state do I? With Magia Erebea, I can turn that grin upside down for ya, you…! I was about to voice the venomous message I had for her when I had the strangest thought.
What was she fighting for?
This sudden question calmed the beast that was stirring within me, ready to thrash my opponent. I had the sudden urge to find the answer to this question before raising my fists up again in preparation for round two.
"Tell me," I asked, lying down on a non-existent bed, letting my guard appear down; appear being the operative word. It was still very much up, hoping to catch her if she tried anything. "Why are you fighting on that side? Why willingly take in Ialda's madness just to be with your teacher?"
I already knew the answer, but I asked her in a way that made me sound arrogant for the purpose of getting her emotions riled up. You can learn quite a bit of a person when they let their emotions show.
Unfortunately, she was on to my game and didn't let me have what I wanted. She did answer my question though. "I took in the madness to slow down Ialda's revival. Since Negi killed her, the madness has been eating away at him for the past eighty years. When we noticed this, we decided to take away some of the madness to slow down her revival process until we came up with a plan to seal her away or destroy her outright." Understandable. "But why would you continue to let him suffer like this? Why not just end his misery and have him commit suicide? Since Ialda takes over those who kill her, if her own host takes his own life, that should be enough to stop Ialda from reviving." The moment those words left my mouth, her hand was around my throat, squeezing with a grip that would make the dinosaurs of old envious.
"You don't think we haven't already tried that?" Was her sudden exclamation, her lips curled into a snarl and her eyes shaking with rage. "If she were that easy to deal with then we wouldn't have that much trouble with her now would we!?"
Ignoring her outburst and unaffected by the lack of oxygen, I focused my attention on her eyes, letting her words flow over me and trying to get a better read on her. Realizing that I accomplished my goal, she released me and looked away, my throat expanding back to normal size after being squished to the size of a pencil.
When I first started training, I thought they were just monsters who had their own sick way of doing things, saving the world the wrong way on purpose. As I fought with Dana, however, I realized that their personalities were changing because of the madness in their systems. They would not normally do what they were doing if they weren't influenced by the insanity produced by that accursed witch.
"And since you are here with me, I assume that you have finally found a plan?" I asked, hoping to receive the only piece of knowledge I never learned back in my timeline.
"Yes." Was her response, facing me once again with a neutral expression, hiding her emotions again. "We have found a way to stop Ialda's resurrection. For that, we need you. We can fill you in with the details back at our HQ." She turned around to face me once more, a bit of the sinister aura fading away and her features softened to the point where she almost looked like the same, innocent girl who's only worry was what grade she got on her last test. "Please, if you truly want to save this world, just like your grandfather, then come with us. If you do, your friends will be safe, and the Earth and Mars will be saved."
"And the people on them?" I questioned, noticing that she seemed to forget a small detail, eyebrow raised.
"They will be safe too." She assured me. "If you come with me, everyone in the solar system will be saved."
Truly…it was a tempting offer. Do as I am told and save the solar system. Before, when I was young and immature, I didn't even consider doing what the 'evil guys' said. But now, I wanted to know more before coming to a decision. However, I am not dumb enough to just blindly walk to their base where they have the home field advantage, as well as having all of the seals still in place.
"No deal, you tell me here what your plan entails." I told her, letting her know that my demand will be answered if she wanted my cooperation.
"…" Her gaze practically begged me to reconsider, hoping that this debate would not have to be settled with violence. I also wanted things to end without violence, but after all of the suffering that I went through, I was itching to get back to fighting. I bit down my bloodlust and continued to stare at the 'hero' with a hardened gaze. Finally, she spoke again, lowering her hand and sounding defeated. "I would if I had the authority to. Only Negi can tell you what you want to know."
I waited for her to continue talking. When she did not, I prodded for answers. "And he can can't see me now because…?"
"Right now, he isn't in his…right state of mind." I knew what she was talking about, it wasn't hard to read between the lines. Negi wasn't Negi right now.
Negi is Ialda right now.
"I see." I said slowly. "Well, I guess this is where negotiations break down."
"It seems so."
We sat in silence, both of us knowing what was going to happen next. We had tried democracy, we had tried settling things without violence, we had tried to get the other to see reason.
I turned away, willing to let her walk away from this in order to give the information she gathered back to Negi.
She wasn't so willing.
I didn't see it, but I sure as hell felt it. A strong blow right across the back of my head, meant to knock me out and put me flat on my face.
It hurt like hell.
"!?" Nodoka gasped, not being able to believe I was still standing, head still attached. I felt her foot leave the spot where it had previously landed a heavy blow. I turned and gave the girl a glare Dana would be proud of. The only reason I am not at her mercy by now is because I didn't think she would be so kind as to let me walk away. If I managed to mistime it by a single millisecond, I would wake up surrounded by Negi's entire group and Ialda herself.
"You seem a little confused." I ground out from between my teeth, advancing. "Did you know that if two forces with equal strength meet at a point, they will cancel each other out? I just made use of that exact same principle. By managing to lean my head back with the same amount of force you attacked me with, I rendered your attack as nothing more than a breeze in the wind."
Before she could formulate any kind of response, with all of the muscle power I dared to use, using a trick I learned from the Witch of the Rift, I let my fist fly deep into her gut, leaving afterimages of my arm in its wake. BoomBoomBoomBoom!
"…" We said nothing. Well, I didn't. Nodoka couldn't say anything.
"…impossible…" she croacked, barely able to speak seconds later. "…you only swung… your fist once…how did you…land four blows...?"
I twisted my fist, grinding into her belly. "By making practical use of an optical illusion."
My arm still bent, I extended it to its full length. The result was Nodoka being sent flying into the sky. Farther…farther…and gone.
I sighed and scratched the back of my head. It is a little disappointing that I could talk one of them away from their group, but then again, they truly believe they are in the right. It will take more than talking to make them abandon their cause.
The back of my head hurt. It was pulsating from that last kick. If this kept up, I would honestly get a migraine. Not wanting any of that, I wrapped my hands on my temporal regions and pushed. With the sound of ripping and tearing flesh, my head was effectively removed from my main body. With ease, I crushed my own head in my hands and burnt it until nothing but ashes remained.
My head grew back almost instantaneously.
"Ugg, I will never get used to that." I spoke, cracking my neck and doing a few movements to get used to the new head. After about a minute of adjusting and relaxation, I took off in the direction UQ Holder was in, hoping Karin had made it back safely.
Not much time passed before I was met with the familiar grass and oak trees I saw before we started running on the water. Seeing land, I dropped out of the sky and began running on foot, recognizing the landmarks that the fourth and I travelled to conduct our initiation. As I ran, I began to think about my confrontation with Nodoka. That face she made when she asked me to join them… it was a face that begged for everything to be over. With that exhausted smile and her eyes giving off a warm light…she honestly believed everything would end it I said yes and helped them with their plan. But, just because she thinks it is right, what is Ialda's plan in all of this? No way she would just let Negi and the others do as they pleased without having some form of backup plan. Question is, what is it?
Two voices swept into my ears, drawing me out of my turbulent thoughts. Focusing my attention towards the lush green valley in front of me I saw that not everything in its expanse was green. I saw a glimpse of red and a glimpse of yellow and black. It was Karin and Kitty! So Karin really did manage to get away…and thank god she is wearing clothes again! The thought of having to explain to Kitty why I was blushing in the presence of a naked girl that wasn't her was not an experience I was in any hurry to endure.
Karin was back in her normal red sailor uniform, that much I could distinguish as the gap between us closed. Kitty, however, was wearing something new. She was in her true, child form, normal bare feet, her hair was draped across her back just like normal, but her clothes consisted of a mono-black top that went down to her thighs, making it look like a dress or a skirt, rather than what it actually was, a shirt. The cloth in question had a short, unfolded, stand-up collar that stood up a few centimeters. Its key feature was a single white line of cloth that crossed her chest, hovering just above her breasts.
Digging my toes into the dirt below, I skidded to a stop in front of the two anxious women, trying to withstand the urge to cough as the large clouds of brown sediment entered my nose like people entering a bar on a weekend.
"Hey Karin," I said, scratching at my nose, "glad you managed to get away. Oh, and sorry for dropping you." I sheepishly apologized, bowing my head slightly and moving my hand from my nose to the back of my head, a nervous chuckle leaving my lips.
"Do not worry about it Touta-sama." Karin told me, her face as expressionless as ever, showing only the faintest traces of relief. Her arms positioned behind her body, revealing a pile of colored fabric that I recognized as my jacket and undershirt when Karin caught me staring in curiosity. "In that situation, I would have done the same had our positions were reversed. It is hard to fight to your fullest whilst worrying about protecting someone." I nodded gratefully to both her understanding and the retrieval of my coveted jacket.
"Thank you for understanding Karin." I spoke my honest gratitude, pulling my orange undershirt over my head.
I stopped when I felt something warm press up against my bare back, stopping me from pulling my shirt down. Looking over my shoulder, I saw that it was Kitty who was stopping me. I didn't know what to think when Kitty didn't say anything when I made my appearance, but now she was stopping me from putting on my…
She was staring at my seals.
"…you have been awfully quiet Kitty. Want some milk?" That nervous remark earned me a painful smack in the back of the head, making an audible clap on contact. "Hey, easy there." I complained, rubbing the sore spot. "I just grew this head back, I don't want to do it again."
There wasn't any reaction out of the blond, now running her fingers across the markings, making my anxiety skyrocket like one of those thermometers from kids shows. Karin, however, grew quite a precarious expression on her face. Her eyes narrowed in a manner indicating confusion and her lips, I don't know how it was possible, seemed to resemble a duck bill in that moment.
"I'm sorry, Touta-sama, say that again?" She asked.
"Oh, when I was fighting, my opponent managed to land a powerful blow to the occipital portion of my head." I told her, indicating the portion of my head a few inches above my neck. "I think she may have managed to break some of my skull and drive it into my brain. When the pain got to a certain point, I ripped my head off and destroyed it. I grew another one, obviously." With a flash, I tossed my head to the side and gave off a cocky grin to make my point. Lucky for me, I saw a glimpse of red under Karin's eyes, just for a second but I saw it. Wonder if Kitty will allow a second wife…wait, WHAT AM I THINKING!? KITTY, MY GODDESS! FORGIVE ME IN MY MOMENT OF WEAKNESS!
Karin spoke up, most likely noticing the small amount of heat on my own face and hurried to change topics. "…the fact that you can speak of regenerating the entire control system of your body, reattach all of the nerves and ligaments, having the calculating ability and cunning to realize the source of the problem and actually rip off your own head, let alone even move without your brain, is quite a dizzying thought." She told me, her hand traveling to her forehead whilst shaking her head in denial, the immortal's other arm reaching for her hip. It isn't nearly as freaky as you make it sound… I thought with an internal chuckle. "Want me to prove it?" I grabbed the sides of my head in order to reenact the discussed scene.
"Please don't." She said. I shrugged and returned my focus to my fiancé, who had stopped investigating my back and was staring at me with a serious expression, which I could not help but consider cute, with her eyes ever so slightly wavering in annoyance and curiosity, her cheeks slightly buffed as if she had something in her mouth but didn't want anyone to see what it was. That is, it would have been cute if her eyes were not trying to dig the secrets out of my back like a shovel digging into dirt!
As I observed her behavior, I shiver crept up my spine, deep as the oceans and colder than the center of the South Pole.
The oldest vampire had on a face of shock, her eyes the size of saucers, gawking at my back. This feeling, as if answering my worst fears, instantly tripled when her glacier-making glare seemed to be trying to rip my soul apart, finally discovering what the true meaning of my decorated body. "Touta…what is this on your back?" If her eyes could make glaciers then the blonde's voice could put a tropical island into an eternal winter! Even Karin, who held her leader above all else, was retreating from the dangerous sensation that began to soak into the atmosphere.
"Would…would you believe me if I told you it was a tattoo?" I managed, hoping I could somehow escape her wrath with a carefully laid joke.
She was not amused. "…"
"!?" With a simple narrowing of her eyes and adorning a scowl, I was truely beginning to question my safety; even more so when Kitty started to violently exude enough magical energy to create a storm of bluish-white, wispy, gas-like substance. This rather large tornado of magical energy circled its owner like a moon does to a planet, continuously rising into the air and tearing the skies asunder. "I will not…ask you twice." Her voice slowly spoke, sounding as dead as her expression was unforgiving. I needed to speak soon or face the consequences.
"…I…I am sorry…but…I can't…I can't tell you." "..?" The tension began to soar as her question was left unanswered, killing intent thick in our surroundings. The silence seeped into my ears, begging an explanation for my response.
"F…for the sake…of the…" I stopped myself. Why am I stuttering? This is Kitty! She is just upset and worried for me, surely! I just have to tell her like I did back in the hot spring! The memories from back then began to surface, reminding me of how soft her lips were, the heat of her skin against mine as we 'played' in the water, the love that the both of us wanted to give each other…
I opened my mouth to tell her what she wanted to know, hoping to reclaim what we started back then…only… 'No.'
Suddenly, everything went black. (Kitty POV) He dares…this motherfucker dares to keep something hidden from me? Despite everything we shared back at the hot spring!?
Normally, I would only be a little upset with the fact that secrets are being kept from me, it is just something that happens from time to time that I have come to accept. However, the fact that my soon to be husband decided to keep something from me, his soon to be wife, was not something I wanted him to develop a habit of any time soon. Especiallysince this information that Touta dared to keep hidden from me is among the most dangerous acts an immortal can ever do!
I was absolutely livid. Did he even know what he got himself into with that…thing…on his back? How could he even do that to himself? What about the future was so bad that he had to resort to using that? I can't tolerate this anymore; my emotions are getting away from me. Perhaps knocking some sense into this gargantuan fool will make him learn his lesson?
Wrapping all of the magical energy that surrounded me into my left fist took a minute longer than I expected, but it didn't bother me as much as the situation before me does. I threw my clenched fist back and unleashed all of my aggression into his face. BOOM! WOOSH!
The leftover force of my punch generated a massive shockwave that, after soaring over the vast valley, ripping the grass from the ground, effectively tearing up all greenery within a several miles in a straight line.
…I can't believe it.
I knew, with the few times I managed to anger the man I loved, that he was far stronger than I realized… but this was just stupid.
He managed to block my fist…with just his arm!
All of my senses were sharped from the anger I felt towards this person; I saw Touta effortlessly bring his arm up as the momentum carried my fist into the outside portion of his forearm, causing the large shockwave to reshape the landscape into two separate valleys with a waterless moat halfway between them.
But that shouldn't even be possible. I am a seven-hundred-year-old vampire, the oldest and strongest vampire on the face of the planet, just below the elders and royalty. Touta is just a changeling that hasn't even been around for a-!
'"…rather, one thousand and seven years…"'
It was one of the few details that I had forgotten, I mean, how could I not have trouble remembering every little detail of what will probably be the most stressful day of my life, with all of the emotional turmoil and the almost unbelievable story and the sudden proposal? But it made sense. He cut that bounty hunter in half, used magic to fend off my attack in the forest, won a fight with Karin…but this…
This isn't Touta anymore.
A shadow had befallen my beloved's face, hiding his eyes from my sight. My emotions began to rise again, seeing that he was easily able to block my attack, I should use a stronger one if he continued to resist his punishment for worrying me.
"I don't have time to tolerate your immaturity any longer Evangeline." I flinched at his stab at my name. His voice was as lifeless and dull as an unsharpened blade and that is not like him. He carried himself with a newfound confidence, not showing even a hint of the fear he had before. This sudden chance unnerved me, how could he go from shaking coward into lifeless bravado?
"Yuki…Yukihime-sama?" My subordinate called from the nearby fallen greenery, taking refuge behind some fallen trees. With a small glance, her worry was clearly evident upon her face alongside confusion. "What was that?"
"Something that doesn't concern you Karin." He said. My eyebrow lifted a few inches, not anticipating this kind of response directed towards the fourth. "This is between me and Kitty."
Karin seemed rather hurt by that statement. Her hands were shaking and her eyes were getting wet. This hurt my own feelings. The fact that Touta would say something like that at all, even if it wasn't directed at me per say, was still a shock. How bad was the future for him to change so much?
I must have been visibly shaken since Touta was looking at me with a softer expression than he was when I hit him. He turned to inquire the state of our fellow UQ Holder member, but questions were not needed to see how shaken she was. The black-haired man took several deep breaths to calm himself down. After several seconds, he gave me a smile.
"Look, I am sorry." He told us. "I have been under a lot of stress recently and can't really find an outlet for my frustration. That doesn't mean that it is right to take it out on you two."
All of my frustration and anger was washed away with his words. How does he do that? How can he say just the right things to make me feel so…what was this emotion? My face is on fire and I couldn't seem to stand still, entwinning my fingers behind my back and making circles in the dirt with my feet.
"Well…there is one thing you can do to make me forgive you." I said. His eyebrow rose in response to my statement. What the fuck am I saying!? I should be clobbering him for keeping secrets and doing such an unforgivable act!
I suddenly became helpless as I watched Touta confidently stroll over to me. He took his hand and wrapped it around my cheek and rose my head up for a kiss.
"Mmm." I welcomed it whole heartedly. His lips were so soft and he was so gentle. I didn't even realize that my tongue crept out of my mouth and was asking his to play. …maybe I will clobber him latter. Maybe.
"Wh-wh-wh-wh-wh-wh-wh-!?" As sudden as the kiss was, it ended in the same manner, much to my disappointment. Karin seemed to be hyperventilating as her fingers twitched and her eyes couldn't seem to focus on anything.
"Oops." Touta said, his smile indicating that he wasn't really sorry. This seemed to be the trigger that set Karin over the edge.
"WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU DOING KONOE TOUTA-SAMA!?" She exploded. "Who do you think you are? K-k-kissing Yukihime-sama out of the blue like that! This is unacceptable! Have you no shame?"
"Why, Karin," Touta started, "am I hearing things? Is that jealousy in your voice?"
Touta just barely dodged the hammer strike that was aimed at his head, the hammer hitting the ground and leaving a rather large hole.
"I'll take that as a yes." Touta laughed, running away from the enraged and embarrassed female.
"I will kill you!"
"Try me Karin; I'm immortal!"
I couldn't help but chuckle as the two exchanged verbal jousts at one another. Following the path of destruction they left in their wake, I followed after them, frowning as images of Touta's 'tattoo' crept into mind. Touta…as soon as we get back, you will tell me why you split your soul into a hundred and one pieces.