Princess Sanzo runs away from home.
Chapter Five: Not A Girl
By Princess X-S Moonshyne
Sanzo woke to the softness of satin sheets and a cold, clammy hand resting gently on her wrist. "Oh Hakkai," she breathed in dreamy hope as she caught at the hand and opened her eyes to see the dreadful leer of that horrible pervert Doctor Nii. "Impudent slimeball!" she screeched and kicked his chair over as she leapt out of bed, ready to defend her chastity.
"You will die for this, you presumptuous slave!" Sanzo snarled as she levelled her gun at the blinking doctor, and suffered from a sudden urgent craving for pickles. "What have you done to me? Where is the pickle jar?!"
Doctor Nii calmly remained sitting where he had landed and dusted off his fallen bunny fastidiously. "As you can see, Your Majesty, the princess is pregnant. Her pulse confirms it."
"Oh dear," sighed the Queen, blowing another smoke ring as she flipped a brightly coloured folded paper plane out the window, though she might well have been referring to the way the plane caught the wind for just a moment, and nose-dived immediately after. One could never quite tell with the Queen.
"P-pregnant?" Sanzo felt faint, and stuffed a fistful of pickles into her mouth. She pressed her other hand to her flat stomach, thinking of how much she had wanted to have Hakkai's child for so long after he disappeared. Two long years of longing... "How-how can it be?"
Doctor Nii looked disgustingly pleased with himself, or perhaps amused at her consternation. "There aren't that many human-demon crossbreeds that we know exactly how these things work...though the child is growing apace now that it seems to have decided to grow. You can probably expect to have a bouncing baby quite conveniently soon, so it won't affect your figure for long. Congratulations, princess." He bowed out of the chamber as Sanzo scowled a fearsome yet very pretty scowl and fired off a few shots after him.
Though her more trigger-happy instincts were still functioning perfectly, in her heart the poor princess could only gape like a fish, or a kappa, as her father was reputed to be. "I-Hakkai's baby-" she stammered, but her cleverness soon reasserted itself. "Never mind. Mother," she appealed as soon as the door closed behind the horrid doctor. "Surely I cannot marry Goku now that I'm pregnant. You must call the wedding off."
Queen Koumyo waved a languid hand in airy dismissal. "What are you saying, my dear daughter, of course you must marry Goku and quickly, before your stomach starts to show. Think of your good name! Besides, the baby needs a father. You will get ready for the wedding tomorrow." So saying, the Queen wandered off in search of more coloured paper to fold.
Sanzo covered her face with her delicate hands, giving in briefly to her despair. But she soon composed herself again. She was strong, and she was also cleverer and braver than her dear Hakkai. As the princess began stuffing a backpack with sensible clothes and jewellery, adding a jar of pickles at the last moment, she sang with fresh determination, and her mother's spies squeaked and fled, assuming she was safely absorbed in mourning once more.
"Ohh my love, ohh yeaa, ohh yeaa...I'm sitting here alone up in my room and thinking about the times that we've been through (oh my love)..."*
She put on the white robes of a monk and her favourite leather bodysuit underneath because she couldn't bear to leave it behind. The Magic Toilet R-no, Maten Sutra, she corrected herself, remembering the look on Hakkai's face when she had taken it out... So cute! she draped across her shoulders for convenient access just in case she should meet another overwhelming swarm of demons. Her long, shining hair, bright and golden as freshly fried french fries, she hid with the headdress of a high-ranking monk, which would also make people avoid her in case she wanted to preach at them.
Thus did the princess set off down along the river, humming softly to herself.
"There is no need to protect me... It's time that I... Learn to face up to this on my own."**
Unfortunately, Sanzo didn't manage to get very far before she saw the guards milling about and pouring out the palace gates. Her absence had been noticed! She lowered her head in apparent humility and picked up her pace, trying to slip past them unobtrusively, but that was so unlike a real Sanzo like she was pretending to be that everyone turned to stare, and sure enough, someone exclaimed, "That's the princess!" and the rest took up the cry immediately after, whether they recognised her or not.
Sanzo cursed and fired a few shots into the crowd to make them fall back, and began to run.
She was panting like a dog and had a stitch in her side like Hakkai had just stabbed her with his fruit knife when she got to the bridge, exhausted to the brink of collapse. And still the voices were behind her, and getting closer. Sanzo sobbed in pain and frustration as she looked over the side of the bridge at the muddy river below, thinking that she would rather die and see her dear Hakkai again than go back and marry King Goku, whom she despised utterly for the gigantic pork bun he'd sent her as a gift on her sixteenth birthday, though they had never met.
"Please don't feed the trolls," said an insouciant voice very close behind her, and Sanzo screamed and nearly shot the kappa who had spoken, who looked friendly and very handsome in spite of his incredibly silly hot-pink tresses.
"Who are you?" she demanded shakily, pointing her gun at him. "What do you mean?"
The kappa smiled and preened under her glare as though it was a look of admiration... though it was, really, because he was so very handsome (but not as handsome as Hakkai, of course). "Don't feed the trolls," he repeated, his voice almost a purr. "It only encourages them. I am the Horny Kappa of the muddy Kappa River, at your service, fair maiden."
To be sure, Sanzo was no maiden, though she was fair, but it wasn't why she shot the Horny Kappa the instant he revealed his identity, nor was it the electrafying frisson of excitement his voice sent down her spine, though it was a consideration as well. Sanzo dropped her gun and kicked him as well for good measure.
"You worthless kappa! You abandoned me! What kind of father are you?" Sanzo wailed as she kicked the groaning kappa, desolate. "It's all your fault Mother is forcing me to marry the food-obsessed King Goku, and I have to run away from home! Stupid kappa! Take that, and that!"
The poor kappa groaned again, and mumbled something unintelligible through his blood for a moment before he spat it out and gasped, "Daughter- I was going to tell you- you don't have to marry... to... I fished out... H-H-" He closed his eyes and didn't finish.
Sanzo grabbed him, shaking him violently. "What, what did you say?" But the kappa was still and silent, and Sanzo wept.
It was in this attitude that the guards who arrived puffing shortly after found the princess, still lamenting over the bloody kappa. They rolled the body into the river and took her back to the palace, and in the morning, the princess was trussed up in the sedan chair, bound for Flower Fruit Mountain to meet her groom.
To be continued...
* /Born to make you happy/, from Britney Spears' album /Baby One More Time/.
** /I'm not a girl, not yet a woman/, from Britney Spears' album /Britney/.