Date: June 28, 2015
Soren has finally returned to Konoha from the Fox Village, and as beaten an wrecked as he is, his first priority is to find Yuuki. He finds her, diminished and depressed, only to discover that plots had begun to turn while he was away.
Poster's note: foul language filtered in obvious places.
"How to call off an engagement"
The Waterfall just outside of Konoha
The afternoon was cool and slightly damp by the water's edge. It as a warm day for this time of year to be honest, but still cool enough to warrant a bit more clothing than usual. Yuuki had been unaware of Soren's return to the village and thus had neither seen nor sought him out. Today she had put on warm lined leggings under a tunic-style top which was under her coat, trimmed in fur. It wasn't deep winter but se was near water so she dressed warmer than she probably needed to be.
Over the last few days in the village she had been seen with a man — a Hyuga — who had basicly pulled her wherever he wanted to go. Just short of laying hands on her. But Soren might have caught sight of them together a moment or two since his return. As was typical, she kept her eyes down, avoiding contact. Not usually, however, was a lack of color in her skin, a slowness in her step. It was there now as she sat o the large stone at the water's edge. She was silent, head down, holding something small in her hands as if it were the last thing she had in the world.
It had been 3 months since Soren had gone, two more than he had said and Yuuki looked somehow… diminished, perhaps depressed. In the light of the afternoon the object in her hands glittered, black and silver, in the moving light that shone through the trees. She had gotten a silver chain to put it on the very day he'd given it to her….
Soren… wasn't the easiest person to get ahold of… and being that he'd been literally dragged to the hospital, and held there for a couple days… it was no surprise that Yuuki hadn't found him. But… he was up… and moving around. It was slow going, but he was working on it. Ayame had seen Yuuki leave the gates, and had immidiately sent one of the energetic pups to let him know. He jumped at the chance to get to talk to Yuuki… and after hearing about Yuuki's new accompaniment around the village lately… he wanted to speak with her.
He slowly slipped from the tree-line out to the beach… and after a moment, he'd reach out to her shoulder. "I'm glad you kept that…" he says with a warm smile. Today, he wasn't wearing his prosthetic… and it seemed pretty obvious he was uncomfortable, but he was here. "And thank you for cleaning my apartment. I don't remember the last time it was that spotless." he says with a small grin.
GAME: Save complete.
Yuuki didn't hear him come up behind her so when he placed his hand on her shoulder she jumped, dropping the ring which swung on it's cain about her neck. A moment and a breath later she looked up at him, pale eyes unable to look him in the eyes. She seemed to endure a struggle of some kind before her head dropped again, her hand going to cloe around that ring tightly. "I.. I wouldn't let.. anything hapen to it…" She wave off the comment about his apartment. She had offered to keep the place up and she had. A bit obsessively.
The next thing she noticed was his prosthetic was not on today and she tilted her head curiously. It was… hard to come up with a good way to ask. She stared at his chest for a few momets looking completely engrosed in her thoughts…. Then a trainwreck of words tumbled out anyway. "Why aren't you wearing your arm?"
Soren blinked a bit. Part of him expected her to be alot more… affectionate. He noticed the internal struggle, an looked genuinely concerned. He smiled, leaning down next to her. "It's… hard to control right now…" he says, before a coughing fit overtook him. This one… was a bit harsher than alot of his fits had been. When it finally subsided, he wiped his mouth off, before groaning. "Sorry… about that…" he says, picking himself up, and smiling over towards her. "I'm… sorry. That took alot longer than anticipated. I mean, ring. It took me 2 months just to learn the first step." he says with a grin, looking at her apologetically. He… wasn't entirely sure how to broach this. He'd been gone for a while… in his mind… apparently long enough for her to have moved on. It… It was akward for him. The only thing he could do was reach over, and squeeze her shoulder. "Are… are you ok?" he asked. That was honestly the only thing he cared about. He wanted to make sure that she was allright… he'd handle everything else as it came.
Yuuki tilted her head a bit more at the answer he gave. The coughing fit made her eyes go wide and she automatically reached out. In that split second se was at his side, cradlin his upper body and head in her arms and lap, Byakugan activated, looking him over intensely. What was that all about?? Her eyes showed more than concern, they showed fear. Fear for him, fear of.. something else too. But she was limited in her ability. With a sigh filled with regret for being so useless, she used her sight to target and lightly tapped the various chakra points where he was showing the most tension and pain.
She could tell he had something he wanted to ask her but she looked down. His hand on her shoulder and his question almost made her feel worse. She opened her mouth to say she was fine, but the lie died on her lips. Tears welled in her eyes. "I… I……" As the tears began sliding dow her cheeks she bent, arms wrapped around him where they knelt, the grip almost too tight. She seemed unable to speak until she managed a ragged whisper. "I .. m..missed you…"
The touches did little. Yes, they helped his physical pain… but right now there was so much more than that. Soren met her gaze. That fear in her eyes. He looked absolutely mortified. He… he idn't know what to do. So he did the only thing he could. He wrapped his arm around her, and he held her close. He rested is hand on her head. "I… missed you too…" he spoke softly. A few tears welled in his eyes, but he kept himself composed. "I'm sorry. I shouln't have left… I shouldn't have left you -alone-. I should have brought you with me… I should have argued with Genkoro harder… I… I…" he fell Silent… an simply squeezed her closer. "I'm sorry. I shouldn't have put you through this…" he said slowly, the dread in his stomach pitting wonderfully.
Yuuki covered her mouth with one hand as she saw the condition of his body. It was like a dagger went through her. When he pulled her close with his only arm, and began to appologise so hard she wrapped her arms tighter about him, burrowing her head into his chest. They stayed like that for a long time, silence reigning while Yuuki tried to compose herself but the more he appologised the worse she felt too. "N..no i..it's…" But how could she tell him with him in that condition? She held onto him like he was the only thing keeping her alive.
Another long moment passed and she hung her head. "I.. I don't deserve to keep this…" Her hand closed about the ring on the chain between them. "I wasn't strong enough."
Soren closed his eyes. When she spoke, he simply held her close, and kissed her head. "No… no… keep it. I gave it to you… because I wanted you to know I care about you… and I always will." he says with a small grin, a shorter coughing fit overtaking him. He glanced at her, and pressed his nose to her head. "I don't… I don't know what you weren't strong enough for, but I'm here… and aslong as we're together… I'm pretty sure -we- will be strong enough." he says with a small smile, trying to be reassuring.
Yuuki finally lifted her head when he assured her that they would be strong enough to handle the situation together. The expression of pain on her face was plain. "My par…. doptive family…" And again she couldn't finish. Reaching up she held onto him tightly as if that would help make everything right again. "They.. found out about… y…you and.. m..me…. And.. I.. They.."
From behind them came a voice, self assured and apparently annoyed. "And they have decided some adopted freak fro the Inuzukas isn't good enough or a member of the Main Branch."
Yuuki was instantly tense and frozen, barely even breathing. When she did utter something it was a name. "Tatsu-san…" The male was clearly Hyuga by birth, short black hair and pale eyes and on his forehead the curse mark. Yuuki lowered her head, ashamed to even hear those words. But Tatsu was frowning at her and Soren. "So I suggest you stop molesting my fiance."
Soren glanced up at this 'Dragon' man, and simply perked a brow. He glanced back at Yuuki, and her reaction. He coul practically feel the ice crawling through her veins, and his grip just came tighter around Yuuki. He saw what was going on. He held her close, as warm and comforting as he could, and kised her head, closing his eyes. He took a long breath, and looked down to Yuuki, with a reassuring 'I got this' smile. Then he glanced back up at Tatsu, with a slightly cocky, self assured grin of his own. "So… in other words, they don't care if she's happy." he says with a grin, glancing at Yuuki. "I mean, it's obvious, with this proposal." he then turned his gaze back to Tatsu. "I would love to talk to them, and work this out like rational adults… and I'm sure they'd love to not give me that chance." But then a coughing fit overtook him again… this one worse. He stumbled to a knee, almost feeling like he would vomit from the exertion… but he managed to finally right himself, wiping a bit of bloo from the corner of his mouth as he rose. "Ahem… sorry. But Yuuki, as I'm sure you can agree, is a young woman fully capable of making her own decisions. So if, per say, she decided not to return to the Hyuuga Village until this matter is resolved properly…" he says, his chakra starting to build. "Then… as a gentleman, I'd have no choice but to repel your attempts to stop her." he says, as politely as he possibly can. "Point aside, atleast this adopted freak doesn't need a forced marriage to get a date… boy." he says with a cheeky grin.
Yuuki looked up at Soren like a lost kitten as he smiled at her. She watched Soren as he pulled her closer and then.. he was on a knee, coughing again. But Yuki didn't pull away. She was right there with him as he went down, eyes and attention on Soren. "Nuptial what did tey do to you?" She ran a hand over his back lightly, trying to be there for him physically and emotionally, concern for his well-being far outwighed her anxiety over Tatsu.
Soren was right of course, her guardians didn't want to give him the chance to talk ad were pretty set against her having anything to do with him. Yuuki had spent the last seven weeks sinking deeper and deeper into a black hole inside her. The longer it took Soren to finish traiing the less she felt she would be rescued.
Soren's words, though, visibly angered Tatsu. Especially that last comment about getting a date. He glared and stalked over to Yuuki, grabbing her by the upper arm and trying to pull her free of Soren physically. Yuuki let out a smll sound (almost a squeak) and winced at the pressure as she was pulled. Tatsu was strong if nothing else….
"Tatsu-san..s.stop it … please." But he just glared at her.
That grab… that's all it took. "Ayame." Soren growled out. And like a mirage coming into being Ayame appeared in her full sized glory, her fangs swept up in blue flames, flames that bruned away chakra, she chomped at the other mans arm. If she connected, she'd rip his arm off it's shoulder if she had to, but she was pulling him away from Soren and Yuuki. If he dodged, she'd simply stand guard infront of the two of them, growling. "You allright?"
Soren glared at Tatsu. He rose to his feet, and bared his fangs, a clearly inhuman growl rumbling forth. IT was getting harder to control his rage… but this wasn't the time or the place. "Yuuki… If… you would like, you can stay with me until this has been settled. It is your choice, and I will respect any decision you make." he says with a nod. "That does not mean I will stop fighting for you… but it is your decision ultimately." he says, a serious look on his face, his attention still dead set on Tatsu, making -contract- sure that he didn't try anything funky.
Yuuki gasped softly as suddenly Ayame was there, bitig dow on Tatsu's arm. The man cried out and let go of Yuuki's arm, only managing to not panic and do himself more damage than Ayame intended. But he did let go of Yuuki. She moved closer to Soren, eyes wide. She could feel the threat rolling off Soren like a thick fog. It made her flush faintly to know Soren would be so protective of her. Tatsu looked about ready to argue when Soren spoke. The man was left gaping at Soren as if he couldn't even put words together in his mind, let alne speak. He turned his pale eyes on Yuuki with a beligerant, "Well?"
Yuuki moved closer to Soren. "I. I'll…s..stay with you… Soren-san…. Please." That last bit was said softly, hesitantly. Her eyes lifted to Soren's and as soon as Ayae let him go Tatsu was off and away, muttering about 'next time'.
Yuuki turned to wrap her arms around Soren tightly, hiding her face aginst his chest. "I..I'm sorry… S…Soren-san… Ayame-san.. I'm sorry.."
Ayame practically spit out Tatsu's arm. "Eeeeew… narcissist jackass… I'm never gonna get that out of my mouth." she offered, as a final parting snipe to Tatsu.
Soren smiled, his arm coming up to Yuuki's head, and petting softly. "I'm sorry too… I… This… this should never have happened." he says c losing his eyes.
Once Tatsu was clear and away, Ayame snapped back at Soren. "WHAT WERE YOU THINKING!?!?" she half growled. "You know! You KNOW! You know you can't waste chakra like that, not right now." she says, growling. It's true… summoning Ayame does require a massive amount of chakra, compared to what most have at their disposal.
Yuuki felt Soren's hand on her head and seemed to calm down just a little bit. he was still worried about Soren, of course, but she was a bit more settled with the situation in general. Ayame's comments almost got a laugh out of her (they did get a small smile sent her way). Soren's saying this shouldn't have happened made Yuuki take a deep breath, trying to release some more stress from everything.
Then Ayame rounded on them and she jumped in Soren's arm. It took a few moments for the fox's words to sink in. When they did, Yuuki reached up and cupped Soren's face in her ands. "What happened, Soren-san? Why are you in this condition?"
Soren just groaned. "Heh… I… was thinking that I needed to do something. I was thinking, that if I -didn't-… I'd never have a chance with Yuuki again. -That-… would have been so much worse." he says with a small grin… but he coughs again, interrupting him. At this point, he's panting, obviously having trouble breathing. "I… the foxes… tried to teach me to harness a new type of chakra… but… something went wrong… it's causing more harm to my body than good." he says, another coughing fit overtaking him.
Ayame sighed. "It's overtaking his normal chakra very slowly… but… the more of his chakra he expends… the quicker it spreads." she says, stepping forward, and nosing Yuuki's. "… I hate to admit this… but I'm glad he did it… it was a stupid thing to do… but I'm glad he did it." she says with a grin. "Who else am I gonna tease Soren over?" She sighed, and then leant down, offering her back to the pair. "Come on… we need to get him back to the hospital. They can atleast slow the progression until Taiki can deal with it."
Yuuki listened to Soren speak and tears welled in her eyes all over again. Se was about to hug him again when he began coughing once more. Immediately her arms wrapped around him, offering support in more ways than one. "Shallow breaths… Take it easy…" She was blushing even as she tried to soothe him. Ayame's nose under her hand brought a soft petting, but she was far too worried about Soren to do any real justice to it. When Ayame leaned down Yuuki helped Soren up then climbed up herself, behind him so she could support him properly, arms wrapped around his ribs from behind. She leaned her cheek against his back as well.
"I…I didn't ask..f..for him…. They just ..decided. A..and… I.." And she had spent the better part of 7 weeks panicing over just telling Soren what her family was pulling let alone doing anything about it. She had little doubt that Tatsu was already seeking out her family and posibly the elders…. She had no intention of leaving Soren, however, hospital or home. "If..if it were up to me…. I.. I'd be with you."
Soren wiped his mouth, as Yuuki helped him up. He was… in significantly worse shape than when the evening started… but most of that is just the night wearing on. He climbed up onto Ayame's back… and closed his eyes, holding onto the fox… trusting his partner with his life. When Yuuki spoke… he leaned back into her arms. When she spoke of wanting to stay with him… he just smiled. "THat's… that's all I could ever hope to hear." he says with a nod. "As long as I can… I will make sure that you have that choice. I promise." he says, trying to reassure her as best he can in the situation.
Yuuki held Soren securely but with a gentle touch. One hand slid through his hair and touched his cheek lightly. His smile and words made her feel wanted, worth something. So she leaned down and kissed him lightly before pressing her cheek to his in a kind of nuzzling movement. She could barely think straight but finally she rested her head against his. "Thank you…" Between Ayame and Yuuki they managed to get Soren to the hospital in a timely fashion and Yuuki refused to leave his room (except for moments of privacy).(re)