Box of Rain

BY : Vethysnia
Category: Yuyu Hakusho > General
Dragon prints: 596
Disclaimer: Yu Yu Hakusho belongs to Yoshihiro Togashi. I own nothing and make no profit from this story.

They had always astounded him; amused him, secretly infuriated his maniacal ego which bathed in the waves of demonic superiority. Humans...humanity, their subtle barbs were ceaseless, their logic distorted and yet somehow ever still cosmically sound. How dare they worm their way into the frozen dormancy that was his emotions, into his very heart that apparently was capable of more than just keeping him conscious and alive.

Kurama had strongly believed from the moment he was birthed in human form that he would have abandoned these people long ago, left them to their meager human designs and existence without ever having to deal with the strange plague that was their bright, red haired son. But even a year ago, when his human father had fallen deathly ill as he himself barely reached a human age of six, he could sense the shift, a different ebb of the tide; it was there, but thousands of years of emotional suppression was ingrained in him, and he did nothing but unwisely ignore it, hence letting it seed, and then sprout.

And how it grew midst his neglect. Exponentially.

Kurama's emerald green gaze narrowed as the lyrics and melody made their soothing way into his upstairs bedroom. It was 'American Beauty', his adoptive father's favorite album, and he remembered him listening to it almost every morning whilst he ate the morning meal and read the newspaper. It was not necessarily an unpleasant sound, and yet as the music seemed to make the very air surrounding him vibrate and surge in ways he had never seen or felt before, he suddenly found himself in a haze of unease with which he was unfamiliar.

He had not been privy to the human grieving process until now.

Shiori's footsteps could be heard delicately treading downstairs, but they possessed none of their upbeat swiftness or motherly urgency. They were deadened, slow, and should have belonged to a wretched ghoul rather than his mother.

His weak, mournful, sad, doting mother.

His strong, immovable, grounded, wise mother.

Kurama emitted a quiet growl of frustration; the change was nearing completion, and he cursed his own idiocy, and especially his own arrogance. He hated being underestimated, but it was far more preferable to underestimating his enemies or personal circumstances. Had he known any form of attachment would have developed between him and these inferior creatures and he would have rather died the day he was hunted and shot down.

He wandered over to the side of his twin mattress, resting uneasily on the edge and acutely taking notice that his mother had turned down the volume of the music, and was now making her way upstairs. Within the instance he steeled himself, locked his words keenly behind the bars of his lips, and prepared to interact with her. Even then, something deep inside of him foretold that this time, it would be different.

Shiori knocked on his bedroom door, before opening it gently and revealing her smiling visage and eyes glassy from previous release. Kurama silently remarked unto himself how strange it was how she still bore a smile in his presence, despite the heavy loss she must feel from no longer having her mate alongside her. He always believed humans were selfish, weak, greedy creatures, not unlike his former demonic manifestation, but he never took anything personal in his scathing line of materialistic work. And yet this frail, easily breakable woman before him refused to shed another tear in front of her alleged son.

Her features creased into that which emanated love, tenderness, the delicate caress of innocence he was not sure had ever known before now. She knelt in front of him, warm hands enveloping his own upon his lap, and in spite of the vigilant frigidity in the cold stare of Kurama's dark jades ( forever mocking her, belittling her, forever untouchable by her soiled mortal hands ), her lips only slipped further into the honeyed nectar of her telltale smile.

“Are you alright, Suichi?”

He said nothing; merely nodded affirmatively in silence.

“Of course you were always such a strong, pillar-like young man. You must think terribly of me for being so weak.”

The words stung, and he did not know why. His regard remained stony, but Shiori's sheer warmth was undeniable. Almost...ambrosial. He would have deemed it nearly a narcotic of a sensation if it weren't for the trembling lucidity which it accompanied.

“You know Suichi...I was listening to your father's favorite album downstairs, and for years I always found the lyrics so confusing. Random phrases and random mind could never put the pieces together.”

She gazed at him, into him really, and he felt dangerously exposed, yet oddly unafraid of her uncovering anything. He had expended so much energy keeping his distance from she and her husband, allowed them to think something was horribly wrong with him despite of his behavior never causing anything resembling a problem. He never cared. They were beneath him. And now he faced the brutal truth, that he was indeed beneath the woman now offering him solace.

“I suppose I just wish I could deal with such things as well as you two always could, sigh, I have such strong men in my life, don't I?”

She massaged his arms, unknowingly transmuting her love, her loyalty, the entire breadth of her grief into his supernatural physiology. Kurama abruptly exhaled a breath he did not realize he had contained. And in a presently rare, precious moment, he spoke to her, openly, honestly, with nothing to hide and no secrets to guard.

“We'll be alright, mother.”

She laughed, and almost cried. But with admirable discipline she did not let them fall. In a brash display quite unlike her normal mien, she pulled him into a firm embrace.

“Quite right, dear!” Shiori quickly rose, taking a deep breath through her nose and exhaling through her lips, suddenly appearing invigorated, as though the exchange of emotion had somehow temporarily purified the maelstrom looming midst her thoughts.

“Dinner will be ready in about an hour, love. And it's your favorite!”

She adjourned downstairs to prepare supper, leaving Kurama to sift through his disturbing epiphany. The seconds after she left were the first he had ever experienced missing the presence of another.

All this time, he believed that the forgery of relationships, of emotional connections, were just the feeble columns of superficial empires, of flawed thinking, of a drastic stray from one's most carnal, and useful instincts. And all this time, he had been ignorant. Humans danced. Humans sang. Humans painted and filmed and strewed their own blood upon the walls of caves just to express the inexpressible. Humans would give anything up for power, for love, for salvation. Their sacrifices meant something. Their lives, no matter how short or mundane, were worth more than all the centuries he had spent breathing, thieving, and killing.

He despised underestimating his specimen. A specimen...that's all anyone in his life ever was to him. And if not that, a parasite feeding off what shallow glory he bled living all those meaningless eons with nothing but diamonds, blood, dust, and burned bridges to call his legacy.

Minutes had passed. He was still sitting motionless on the edge of his immaculately ironed and made sheets, trying with all the cognitive power he possessed to process his intense thoughts of disillusionment. Kurama knew he could never be one of them. He knew he could never fully integrate into their society, their culture, the very intrinsic manner in which they conducted their everyday existence. But perhaps, if he were abstract enough, if he were patient enough, if he remained relentless...he could continue to walk among them. He could continue to learn from them, unlock the mysteries they undoubtedly and unwittingly harbored. Never had another being of flesh and consciousness before abducted so much of his intrigue. His own naivety and arrogance would forever continue to astound him for such a blatant case of denial. Shame on him. Shame on his disregard for life, for death, for more than just corporeal gain and cosmetic idolatry.

The music commenced downstairs.

Kurama leaned over, letting his face fall into his hands, and wept for the first time in his entire immortal lifetime.

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