Categories > Anime/Manga > Rurouni Kenshin > M.I.A

Dead and Gone

by hootowl 0 reviews

...more exciting than she ever, Jason Bourne and 24 and the like may have some influence on this collection of insanity.

Category: Rurouni Kenshin - Rating: PG-13 - Genres: Humor,Romance - Characters: Kaoru,Kenshin - Warnings: [?] - Published: 2013-09-04 - Updated: 2013-09-04 - 1132 words

Kaoru shuddered, pulling her thin sweater tighter around her shoulders against the biting wind. Winters were terribly cold and she often asked herself why she didn’t move some place warmer. She snorted, digging a hand into her pocket for the bus fare. “You’d need money for that sort of thing, idiot.”

It was late and all she wanted was to go home and put her feet up. A flash of red caught her eye and she jumped. She should pay more attention to her surroundings. People die because they don’t pay attention. She turned toward the red. A man stood, starring at the wall nearby. She blinked in surprise. No one came to the wall this late during the winter months. How strange.

His hand rose to the dark granite, fingertips brushing over a name as if to make sure he wasn’t seeing things. She paused, head tilting curiously. The war had been over for years. What was he doing? Well, freezing her ass off wouldn’t answer that question and she really didn’t care. She told her feet to move and move they did. Toward the redheaded stranger. Inwardly cursing herself, she cleared her throat. “Excuse me, sir?”

He started, turning sharply. Violet eyes widened when he saw her, darting around to see if there was anyone else. “Are you alone, Miss?”

Kaoru shrugged. This is totally how stupid girls get killed. “I’m a big girl, I can take care of myself.”

She stepped closer, surprised when he shifted away from her. Smiling reassuringly, she glanced at the wall, noticing the streak in the frost where he'd drug his finger. “Someone you know?”

He eyed her silently, shifting as the wind cut through his clothes. “My name.”

Her eyebrows rose and she turned back to the granite. Himura Kenshin. “What’s your name doing on a memorial?”

He smiled. It was a nice smile, she decided. His eyes went back to the wall, taking in his name carved in stone surrounded by others. “It’s for the dead and missing.”

They stared at it, shivering in the icy breeze and Kaoru wondered if he felt like he was staring at his own gravestone. She dug her nose deeper into her scarf, absently wishing for spring. “And you’re missing.”

Violet eyes peeked at her from beneath flame red hair, a lop-sided grin pulling at his lips. “So it would seem.”

She was taken by surprise at how dangerously sexy he suddenly appeared. The effect was ruined by a violent shudder and a sudden rasping cough. Kaoru frowned. The poor man was wearing a light jacket that had clearly seen better days and a pair of jeans that had their knees blown out. She stepped forward, unwinding her scarf and quickly looping it around his neck before he could protest. She deftly tucked the ended into the collar of his jacket, ignoring his surprised eyes and speaking briskly, “Do you have a place to stay?”

Pale fingers touched the scarf in wonder. “Oro?”

“Never mind. You’re coming home with me.” She gave his worn clothing a critical look. “You have enough for a bus fare, right?”

“Yes, but—”

Her hand closed around his wrist and gave a sharp tug, ignoring his flinch. “No buts, you’re coming with me. I want to get out of the cold and don’t try telling me you’re not cold.”

Left with no choice, he followed her to the bus stop just as the bus pulled up. The ride was brief. Five stops and Kaoru was pulling him off the bus and another block and a half led them to a tall apartment complex. A blast of warm air and the smell of beef stew greeted them as Kaoru swung her door open. “Welcome!”

A young woman appeared in the hall, dark eyes narrowed. “Where have you been, Kaoru Kamiya?”

“I got a little waylaid.”

She motioned to the redhead behind her. Dark eyes swept over Kenshin’s tattered clothing. Kaoru grimaced. He looked even worse in full light. Violet eyes darted around the entryway, flinching slightly at the assessing look he was receiving. The dark-eyed young woman turned back to Kaoru, giving her a critical look. “Are you injured?”

Kaoru shook her head, peeling her coat off and toeing off her shoes. “I’m fine. I can’t feel my fingers and toes, but that’s about it. Oh, Megumi, this is Kenshin Himura. Kenshin, Megumi Takani.”

Kenshin smiled politely. “Pleased to meet you, Miss Megumi.”

Suspicion remained in her gaze, but Kaoru ushered Kenshin further into the apartment. “You’d better warm up. Here’s a towel. I’ll see if I can dig up some clean clothes. We’ll eat when you're ready.”

Kaoru practically shoved him into the bathroom, disappearing into her room and rummaging through her closet. Megumi appeared in the door. “Who is that, Kaoru?”

Kaoru sat back, holding up t-shirt she’d dug out of a box, eying it critically. “Kenshin Himura. I found him in the park.”

Megumi sighed, pinching the bridge of her nose. “Kaoru, this is a man, not a kitten. You can’t keep him!”

Kaoru rolled her eyes, gathering the sloppily folded clothes and squeezing past the older woman. “I couldn’t just leave him out there. He’d die of frostbite!”

Megumi followed her, hissing, “There are shelters for people like him!”

Kaoru glared at her, knocking on the bathroom door. “Kenshin? I’ll leave some clothes outside the door. We’ll be in the kitchen.”

Megumi said nothing until they were well away from the bathroom. “Do you want me to call Sano?”

Kaoru grunted, pulling bowls and spoons out of cabinets and drawers. “Why would you call Sano?”

“You can’t be that dense, Kaoru. If that man is staying the night, Sanosuke should be here to keep an eye on him.”

“Kenshin’s not going to rape and murder me.”

“You don’t know that!”

A throat cleared softly and both young women turned to find the man in question standing in the door. The clothes were large on him, the sweatpants puddling around his feet. Damp hair hung down his back, nearly past his hips. Kaoru smiled in welcome, but Megumi’s frown deepened.
“Thank you for the clothes, Miss Kaoru.”

“Megumi made beef stew.”

Kenshin moved into the kitchen, ducking nervously under Megumi’s frosty stare. Finally, Megumi sighed, picking up her purse and locating her keys. “I have to report to work. I’ll send Sano around later tonight.”

Kaoru shook her head. “That’s not necessary.”

Megumi darted a quick look at the redhead that was blissfully eating his stew. “Nevertheless, he’ll be by. Answer the door.”
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