Date: November 15, 2012
After an unsettling experience in the hospital, Eri runs over to Ayumo to check on him. They talk and manage to become even closer than ever.
"The Temptress and the Archer"
Raiun Falls [Land of Lightning]
A dull roar is omnipresent in this area, the sound of many thousands of gallons of water a minute flowing down from the heights. The falls are almost 100 feet high, a sharp cliff face with the water pouring off into a natural basin. It flows southwards, the rush of water forming a small river that goes down a smaller set of falls, known as rips. The area is filled with a thin amount of mist.
It appears as if a titanic battle occurred here sometime in the past. A large swath of earth has been blackened and melted by some intense source of heat, charring the stone sides of the waterfall and condensing to a point roughly a quarter of a mile away. The ground is also shattered, as if by an incredibly violent, localized earthquake. In addition, there is a collection of deep gouges, seemingly from fantastically large blades thrust into a tight radius, and three moderately sized craters riddle the area. Off to the side of the waterfall is a large wall of solid iron several feet in thickness, almost reaching the full height of the falls themselves. The wall seems to have burst up from the ground very close to the cliff face. With so much mist in the air, the metal has begun to rust. Nevertheless, it remains standing, as if watching over this pocket of utter destruction in an otherwise scenic setting.
To the south, it flows into a rather calm lake, really nothing more then a very wide and shallow valley that has filled up with water from the falls. To the north southwest and southeast lay trails going out to either side of the large mountain, completely different paths that meet at the peak. They are joined by a small bridge which crosses the river coming down from the basin of the falls.
Ayumo ran from the hospital, as soon as he had calmly walked out the front door, it had been a head on, full fledged sprint, non stop to this point. Bouncing off the iron wall with two steps, he'd hop and land into a tumble, finally ending on his back, panting, as he stared up at the sky. That whole thing.. the hospital, the room, the man.. all of it blurred together in his mind's eye, driving him near madness. He'd close his eyes, shaking his head slowly. Trying to lose himself in the surroundings, that nature's calm helping to slow down racing thoughts.
Eri flickered in front of where Ayumo laid the moment he came to a stop smiling down softly at him. She noticed something was up and decided to be the one who did the following this time. She lowers herself onto the ground to lay down beside Ayumo looking up at the sky with him. "Nice day isn't it?…" She reaches out to softly take his hand in hers squeezing it comfortingly. "Relax love, I'm here for you…" She pulls him a bit closer to her if he allows it and hums a soft peaceful melody, a lullaby that her mother often sang to her after she had bad dreams as a child.
Ayumo would blink open his eyes, everything on high alert as that other life force got near. As soon as he realized it was Eri, he'd relax, a soft sigh given as he'd close his eyes again. More than happy to take her hand, he'd move in closer as she cradled him, curling into her slightly. The music was soothing, a quieting presence. A slow breath taken and released, he'd speak quietly. "That.. was a lot.. like what I woke up to. My first time in Kumo.. Eri-chan.." He'd pause, realizing only belatedly exactly what he was implying by saying what he felt. A moment's pause and he'd continue on, "So.. going in there.. I thought I'd be ok.. it's been 10 years.. but.. him.. in there.. it wasn't. At all.."
Eri continues humming softly as she listens to Ayumo, running her fingers through his hair as she did so. She could only imagine what he must've been going through, but it was nice to be the one that's there to comfort him. She waits a few moments to wait and see if he has anything else to say before offering a quiet nod. "Sometimes memories lay dormant for some time, it is only natural that they resurface given the right conditions…" She looks down at him and offers a smile to him. "I know I cannot pretend to understand what it must have been like…the way you arrived at all…but I'm glad you did come here. If you didn't then I wouldn't have been able to meet you and that would make things much more boring around here right?…"
He couldn't help but chuckle at that. Eyes slowly opening to look up at Eri with a small smile. "True.. I wouldn't of met you.. or anything." A small shrug is given with a soft sigh. "It's.. been a long time coming.. but yeah.. with Reizei-san around.. I guess.. I kinda should of expected it." He'd reach up then, calloused finger tips gently brushing her cheek with that small smile. "Thank you.. Eri-chan, for being there for me.. I.. am not sure what I would do without you by now.. totally out of sorts, I'm sure.." He'd chuckle lightly again, shifting to sit up beside her so he could wrap her up in his own hug.
"See sweety, good things did come from that scary experience, that's what's important.." Eri blushes softly and affectionately nuzzles his hand as it brushes her cheek "You are more than welcome love, you do the same for me so it makes us even…besides you mean a lot to me Sharp Shooter. I feel like I don't have to pretend as much around you…" She chuckles softly and cuddles up against him as he hugs her. She looks down for a moment before looking up at him curiously "So tell me Sharp Shooter, how would you like to be the one who gets all of my attention? There would be some conditions, but it would be…interesting to say the least…" She scratches the back of her head nervously and waits on some sort of response from Ayumo.
Blink.. blink.. Ayumo would bust out in a big ol' grin then, wrapping Eri up in a BIG bear hug! "That'd be awesome Eri! I'd be.. it'd be.. yes! ahh.." He'd laugh then, loosening up that hold on her to blush with a sheepish grin. "I.. I care for ya a lot, Eri-chan.. and I know that your style is.. suggestive.. but, yanno? It's ok.. I mean.. you're not going with them.. you come enjoy my pelt with me.. so.. yeah.." He'd chuckle again, blushing harder as he thought about how they 'enjoyed' the pelt together, beaming like a big ol' fool at her.
Eri giggles playfully at the tight grip and hugs him tightly in return as she listens to him. He was so cute to her whenever he got all excited and caught up with his words. Her smile does soften when he does seem to understand what conditions she was about to speak about. "I am glad that we will be able to reach an understanding then! And you just remember to keep the pelts warm after battles…I do tend to get a little 'excited' after I am in a position of power over someone.." She grins playfully and lightly nibbles on his ear as if illustrating her point. She'd whisper into his ear softly "Thank you love…you made my day." With that said she goes back to hugging him softly.
Ayumo would beam, hugging her once again. He'd smile, still blushing with a nod. "Ahh.. yeah.. will definitely help ya with that too.." Chuckling, he'd nuzzle into her as she nibbled his ear, a low shiver tingling along his spine. His eyes closed at her sweet words, his own breath warm against her ear as he'd nuzzle it in response. "And you.. my love.. you made my life.." A soft chuckle whispered into her ear before he simply held her close. His whole life has changed, since he met Eri.. and it was definitely for the better.. A slow breath taken and released, he'd screw his eyes shut tight. She.. had to know.. if she was going to be with him.. then no secrets. Slowly, Ayumo would draw back a little, eyes opening, a pain in them that really did reach deep into his core it seems. "Eri-chan.. I.. I have to tell you.. why… I left.. because.. it's.. important.. hai? I don't.. I want no secrets between us.. and mine is.. cold and dark.."
Eri happily holds onto Ayumo shivering in response to his own whisper in her ear. She was actually a little bit nervous about whether or not he would accept her offer since it was rather spontaneous. She does look up at Ayumo when he draws back looking into his pain filled eyes, frowning a little bit. This was more out of concern than the fact that he even had a secret in the first place. Her voice was soft and gentle as she tried to encourage him. "Of course love, you can tell me anything…my opinion of you will not change, no matter what happened…" She sits up and leans on him as she waits on him to continue.
He'd close his eyes at her words. Ayumo taking a slow breath, his arms tightening about her in a small hug. "I.. was young.. maybe.. 5.. it's a huge blur.. but.. I was home.. and my mom made me mad.. so.. so frustratingly mad.. I picked up a pencil and threw it at her.. I didn't know.. I didn't know it was charged.. I didn't.." His arms tighten a bit more with a shuddered breath. "It blew up.. in her face.. shards everywhere.. I.. freaked out.. she fell down.. dead.. the blood was already pooling around her.. and I ran.. I ran and ran and ran.." He'd gulp, eyes screwing tighter shut. "I.. lived.. in the wild.. for a while.. and when I was sick.. delirious.. Ogo.. the bear.. angel..demon.. I dunno.. he.. he found me.. brought me in.. even after I tried to attack.. he.. helped me.."
Eri pouts a little bit and she gently moves Ayumo down so he can listen to her heartbeat. She waits a few moments contemplating what to say before sighing softly. "Love you were a baby…you didn't know any better…it's not your fault. Please don't think that it is…" She softly kisses his forehead and remains close to him. "I know it is hard..to not blame yourself…especially with the consequences of the actions that took place. But wherever your mother is..I know that she has already forgiven you. It is a mother's instinct to love their child, their mistakes and all." She helps Ayumo to his feet and takes his hand in hers. "See love? I care for you just as much, if not more, even after hearing that..You are a kind and caring person Sharp Shooter never forget that. Now you need some rest sweety..let me help you home…I will allow you to get to know more about me in return at some point. For now though, we need to focus on getting you to feel better.." With that she leads him on back to the village to return to his home to help him feel better, perhaps some sweet honey tea would help.