the special two
"Yep! Fits, don't it?"
"I'm honestly not sure what that is. Some sort of connection to water?"
"Almost. There's that, and the tendency to nurture, as well as lean towards the act of 'healing' or washing away the grime."
He smiled softly. "Dead on, that…"
She turned away quickly, but he didn't miss the blush. "It's quite possible everyone has had a past life." Before she could crawl away, Ryudin pulled her into his lap, wrapping his arm about her small shoulders.
"Ok. I'm game. If you were a water priestess, then what was I?"
Toki's eyes flickered to his face.
"Well that's easy! The same thing you are now."
"And what's that?"
Quick jab to his chest. "Ronin."
A wanderer, for sure.
Two small hands moved to cup the sides of his face, cool and soft like the touch of calm water.
"You were a warrior. Strong, well seasoned from the battle of the past. And when peace came within reach, you fled from it, unsure of the stretch of water laid out before you. So you wandered, long, and… alone…searching for…for…"
As the end of her thought trailed off into a whisper, Ryudin pulled her closer, quick to reassure, even though a corner of his heart felt chipped at her words. But how could he possibly condemn her for simply voicing the truth, one he was all to quick to dismiss?
She was staring at his face, biting her lip tentatively in the fading light of day.
"Ryudin." He met her gaze quietly. "When… you do return to your wandering-"
A few fingers to her soft lips cut off the rest of her words.
"I'm not going anywhere."
An additional glare quieted her next phrase. A few moments ago, he might have laughed at the tight lipped expression pulled across pinched face.
Not right now.
He ran his hand through her hair, watching as his fingers moved like water within her long, brown strands of honey soft hair.
"I was … planning to," He admitted in a whisper.
Her expression remained carefully blank, but he felt the muscles of her back jump under her touch.
"Back when you and Keisuke were taken; after we found you."
The minute the words had left his lips, Toki pulled herself to sit squarely on his crossed legs, and lifted her hands to cup both sides of his face. Mere inches away, Ryudin felt the warmth of her breath as she heavily huffed.
Smiling grimly, Ryudin slowly drew his hands from her sides, moving to cover her small, cold hands with his own.
He looked into her eyes, and saw the city lights outside dance like stars in her dark eyes.
"It was the closest I came to losing you." His eyes shut tight as old memories flash back through his mind. "And frankly, Toki, I…" He felt her small form lean into him, fitting neatly into his. They brushed their heads together, her lips trailing light as air across his brow, as he fought away the old images swarming at the back of his eyelids.
"What?" She breathed gently, giving his hands a gentle squeeze.
His eyes slowly opened.
"I was scared for feeling so much for you, Toki."
This time she bit her lip - hard.
"And I still am."
Her hands were warm against his face.
The silence following their last words was palpable, but not unjustly so. And neither of the two, for all their worrying, could in that moment feel disdain for the present. Sinking into the others embrace, both felt a small awe in the moment, a moment wherein both had expressed the shared fear loss.
A life, without the other.
Nevertheless, it was a frightening sensation, and in near edge of sleep, as Ryudin's breath slowed to an even fall and rise, Toki was quick to let slip a few silent tears from her watching, wakeful eyes.
Unable to condemn him, even as he broke her heart, once again.