Somewhere Between Hope and Fear - 6
Author: OneAmahira
Content Rating: PT
Published: 2010-12-20 02:50:42
Tags: yu yu hakusho, yyh, yuu yuu hakusho, kurama, yusuke, hiei, second person

The tournament will be starting soon. While waiting in line for tickets you see Yusuke and some of his other demon friends again. Also, Yukina has arrived much to everyone's surprise. But why is Hiei of all people looking for her brother for her? You don't want to get involved, but when you hear her crying in the middle of the night...

Author´s Notes and Disclaimers:

Still preserved in it's original Quzilla form, part 6 of Somewhere Between Hope and Fear!

Quizilla Memo: Here we go again, next part! Shout outs to Paraxxparaxxparadise and a plug for Hanami no Tsuru. Also a shout out to xXMultiLayerGirlXx. Thanks for the message, pick, and for recommending me as a favorite author on the forums! And one last one to xEclipseShadowx for putting me on the favorite list in the forums too!

Yu Yu Hakusho is property of Yoshihiro Togashi, Shueisha, Studio Pierrot, Funimation, and several other people or companies that are not me.

Chapter 6
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You stand outside the massive demon stadium, giant displays showing highlights from the last tournament. Kin and Kurama are with you, waiting in line for tickets. Yomi and Shura do not accompany your group, as they are registering to be in the fight. You find it hard to believe how well organized this whole affair is.

"They've got it really well set up... almost feels like waiting in line for a concert or something back home." You survey the crowd with Kurama. Although the three of you were here quite early you're hardly the only or first ones waiting for ticket windows to open.

"The windows should be opening soon." Kurama glances around. Your group isn't right at the front of the line, but there are far more demons milling about behind you than ahead.

"Hey, I think they're showing one of your fights, Kurama." You gesture to toward one of the screens.

"Yes... my fight with Shigure in the last tournament."

Kin watches with interest until the footage changes.

"Lookin' fer a mate?" She flashes Kurama a fanged grin.

"No." Kurama smiles. "Flattering though."

"Eh, yer much too humany anyway. Mixin' demons and humans that way only cause problems." The cat woman frowns thoughtfully.

"I guess..." You shrug, not really giving the matter much thought.

"Problems like Yusuke." Kurama jests and you snicker in response.

"Raizen's kit, right?" Kin stretches lazily.

"Yes, he's the one who came up with this tournament." Kurama confirms for her. You turn your attention back to the nearest screen, now showing highlights from a fight between Hiei and Mukuro.

"Well, now I know what Yusuke meant." You recall the conversation with Urameshi and Hiei.

"Hm?" Kurama glances at the screen, then you.

"When Yusuke stopped by before you came to get me... He was talking about fighting with Mr. Sociable, unless Hiei was 'too caught up flirting' or rather, 'fighting' with Mukuro." You explain.

"I see." Kurama chuckles. "It was certainly more than just a fight." He watches the screen.

"Yeah. Way more that just a fight."
"They so had to have slept together after that."
"If that's flirting, I don't wanna know their idea of fighting."

"Yeah." Kin tips her head. "Definitely."

Kurama declines to comment about the remarks you and Kin make, but something catches his attention in front of one of the screens.

"I'll be back in a moment." He excuses himself.

"Um... okay." You blink and watch the redhead make his way through the crowd. He returns leading a small woman with blue-green hair and ruby red eyes in a kimono.

"Who's that?" Kin's tail flicks behind her.

"Hello." The girl smiles. You get the feeling you've seen her once before, but you can't quite place it yet.

"Kin, Chiyori. This is Yukina." Kurama introduces you all.

"Yukina? Yusuke said something... Hiei is looking for your brother, right?" You blink.

"Yes. I asked Mr. Yusuke to inquire for me if he'd been able to locate him yet... but when I thought about it more, I realized it would be better of me to come myself and ask." Despite her pleasantness there is a touch of sadness in her voice.

"I'm surprised Kuwabara didn't insist on coming with you." Kurama smiles.

"Kazuma really wanted to but Miss Shizuru wouldn't stand for it." Yukina smiles. "She won't let him miss class."

Kuwabara... It clicks in your mind where you've seen her before. "Hey! You were with Keiko and Yusuke on a double date, with that guy, right? Restaurant down on the corner of 2nd, near a bus stop."

"Oh, yes. We went there once. That's the first time I've ever had ice cream." Yukina nods and smiles at the memory. "I thought you seemed familiar... well except for the cat ears and tail." She smiles again. You feel she's very comfortable to be around but wonder...

Why's she going out with Kuwabara, a human.
How she talked Hiei into helping her find her brother.
What she's been living in Human World for.

"Well, I'm sure we will see Hiei at some point. Why don't you stay with us?" Kurama offers Yukina.

"Yeah, I can afford a ticket' fer ya." Kin checks her bag of money.

"Thank you very much, Mr. Kurama, Miss Kin." Yukina bows politely. "I wasn't sure I would be able to get a ticket myself with how long the lines are, and I don't know how much they cost."

"It's only gotten longer since we got here." You look behind at the long lines of demons that have formed. You wonder what the exact circumstances are between Yukina, Kuwabara, and Hiei. However, heavier subjects soon weigh on your mind, and you touch your waist band where the scroll is tucked neatly beneath your shirt.

The ticket windows open and the lines begin trudging forward.

"Two tickets." Kin orders the demon at the window. She and Yukina wait while Kurama purchases tickets for you and himself. The four of you soon find seats and get settled. The fighting won't be starting today, but the contestants' groupings will be announced and you want to try and spot Ethelred.

The day is rather uneventful, but Yusuke meets up with your group, along with a few other demons you don't know.

"Hey Kurama, Fujiwara! ... What you doing here, Yukina?" He stops and blinks.

"I thought... it might be better of me to come and ask about my brother myself." There is a uncertainty in her voice.

"Er, right." Yusuke exchanges glances with Kurama. You suspect they know something you don't. "So what's with the catgirl look, Fujiwara?" He looks at you curiously.

"Disguise... which you are ruining." You sweatdrop.

"Yeah, she's my lil' sister right now, got it?" Kin puts an arm around your shoulders and a hand on her hip by her dagger.

"And the real cat girl is...?" Yusuke studies the tall woman.

"Name's Kin." She smirks. "Yers-?"

"Yusuke Urameshi. And this is Jin, Touya, Chu, and Rinku. Shishi and Suzuka are around somewhere."

"Ah." You nod and introduce yourself. "I'm Chiyori Fujiwara, a pleasure to meet you."

"Well, any friend o' Urameshi is a friend o' mine!" Jin, the one with messy red hair and happens to be floating, smiles with a single fang sticking out.

"Uh... th' hell happen to yer other fang?" Kin tips her head curiously.

"Now that's a rather rude thing to be sayin'! Ne'er had another fang!" Jin sounds more like he is joking that actually offended. Kin only snorts faintly.

"So you really aren't fighintg, Kurama?" Touya, the one with an icy gaze studies your companion.

"No, I'm afraid not."

"Too bad. I would have liked to have seen you fight again, and perhaps fight you myself once more."

Touya smiles ever so faintly. You sniff the air, aware of the smell of alcohol.

"Um, you reek of booze." You sweatdrop at the tall muscular man with a strange blue mo hawk.

"Chu always smells this way!" Rinku, the littlest one giggles. "He prefers to drink his breakfasts."

"Ain't nothin' wrong with that, and besides, I only had a few in the morning! Saving the good stuff for the fighting." You sweatdrop at his protest. You don't generally drink a lot, but when you do, it certainly isn't for breakfast, let alone even before noon.

"Hey, I'll see you guys around." Yusuke waves at his companions as the group breaks apart.

"Hopefully in the arena next time, eh Urameshi?" Jin waves a farewell.

"Yeah." Yusuke gives him a thumbs up, then turns back to your group.

"I don't suppose you have seen Mr. Hiei?" Yukina inquires of him.

"Um, earlier today in the registration line. Dunno where he is now." Yusuke scratches his head and glances at Kurama.

"Oh..." Yukina looks down at the ground.

"I'm sure we'll see him later." Kurama assures the girl.

"How's 'bout we take a look around fer 'im before we go?" Kin pats Yukina's shoulder.

"Sure, he's probably around here somewhere."
"Why not? There can't be that many three eyed sociopathic midgets here."
"Meow... I guess we can if we have to..."

"Really? Thank you." Yukina smiles. "I hope I'm not imposing on you."

"Nah, why don't we split up?" Yusuke looks around the milling crowd.

"I'm goin' wit' Chiyo!" Kin glomps you happily.

"All right. We'll meet back at the entrance in two hours. Why don't you come with Yusuke and me, Yukina?" Kurama offers.

You get the impression that was some kind of tactical decision on Kurama's part. But whatever is going on isn't your business and you don't intend on making it such. You and Kin head off in the opposite direction from the others.

"Ya know..." Kin looks thoughtful. "I'm pretty sure she's an ice maiden."

"Yeah? What about it?" You listen while scanning the crowd.

"Well... said she's lookin' fer her bro, right?"

"I think so." You aren't paying much attention to the conversation.

"Don't ya think it's kinda weird?" Kin blinks, taking the conversation much more seriously.

"No, why?" You blink and look at her. Kin looks at you incredulously.

"Ain't no ice maiden men, girl! They live up on this floatin' island, hidden 'bove a buncha mountains near cat territory. They don't need men to have their kits!" Kin waits for it to dawn on you what she's getting at, but grows impatient and spells it out for you a second later. "So this girl can't have a brother!"

"... Oh." You stop to compute this new and unusual information.

"You're right, that is strange."
"Um... let's mind are own business."
"I bet Kurama and Yusuke know something."

Kin nods and the two of you continue your search. With this new information you're more sure than before about not wanting to make this matter any of your business.

"Let's just find 'im fer her and let 'em sort it out themselves." Kin shrugs.

"Actually, I rather hope we don't find him." You sweatdrop. "Or at least, that the others do instead." You're still a little bitter...

About the whole Hiei knocking you out thing.
About Hiei ruining your Tetris game.
About the entire time with Hiei in general.

"S'long as somebody finds 'im, I guess. She seems like a sweet girl, even if this don't exactly make sense."

"You have a real soft spot, don't you Kin?" You smile at your feline companion.

"Eh, yeah. Didn't used to though... But, well, s'what my baby sis woulda done." Kin smiles back, a little sadly. You look at her curiously and wonder about her real little sister.

"Did something happen to your sister, Kin?"

"Was a long time ago." Kin turns away to survey the crowd.

"Oh." You don't think she wants to talk about it any further.

"It's okay. I owe her a hell of a lot, so I decided to try an' live my life as she mighta lived hers. Try and make up a bit..." Kin trails off. You're about to ask her more about it, but she interrupts before you can get the words out. Besides, it's probably better in the long run if you don't become so close to her.

"Ain't that who we're lookin' for?" She points and look in that direction. With how things have currently been going for you, you can't say you're surprised to have spotted Hiei and Mukuro.

Just my damned luck. They're walking away, and although you and Kin are pushing your way past other demons, you realize to two of you won't catch up. This is stupid. I'll just shout something to get his attention. You open your mouth and...

holler, "Hey! SHORT DARK AND SOCIOPATHIC!" - If that doesn't get a reaction, you don't know what will.
la the Tetris theme really loud. Surely he must recall that obnoxious tune!
shout, "Wait up, Mr. Sociable!" - No sense in trying to piss him off, lest he decide to ignore you.

Whatever you do, you have their attention and they do stop, looking slightly less than interested in your presence. You and Kin catch up, and you notice Kin seems a bit edgy.

"... Isn't Kurama supposed to be babysitting you?" Hiei glances at Kin.

"Something you wanted?" Mukuro inquires.

"Er, uh, yeah..." Kin scratches her head and shifts away from the shorter women.

"Then say it." Mukuro crosses her arms. Kin laughs nervously and you speak up in her place.

"Actually, we were looking for Hiei. Yukina apparently decided asking Yusuke to talk to you wasn't enough... She's with him and Kurama right now-"

"She's here?" Hiei interrupts before you can finish what you were saying. You can't read his expression, although Mukuro glances at him and hers seems to soften just slightly.

"Go on, Hiei."

He stares at her and Kin glances at you nervously in the silence. You suspect a telepathic argument is currently unfolding between them. Either way the silence is both tense and awkward for you and Kin. After a few more moments of strange silence pass, it's evident Mukuro must have won the debate.

"Where is she?" Hiei asks you, although it sounds more like a demand than a question.

"We're all supposed to meet back up in..." You glance at your wrist watch, "... twenty minutes. This way." You start walking, Kin beside you. Hiei trails a step or two behind.

The three of you arrive before the others at the main entrance. Hiei leans against the wall and Kin watches for the others. You idly play with the camera on your phone and snap a few pictures. Kin blinks in confusion at you and Hiei only raises an eyebrow but otherwise doesn't seem to care when you snap his picture.

"Yo." Yusuke walks up with Kurama and Yukina. Hiei straightens promptly.

"Mr. Hiei." Yukina bows politely.

"It was stupid of you travel here alone." Hiei snaps in response. Something in the inflection is different from the verbal barbs he's given you before.

"I'm sorry... I guess I have a habit of being careless. I don't mean to trouble you." Yukina clasps her hands together in front of herself. Yusuke glances over at you and Kin, then hooks arms with the two of you.

"Hey kitties, why don't we, uh... go over there!"

"Hey, hey!" Kin blinks at Yusuke half drags you both off, Kurama following him.

"What's th' big idea!?" Kin huffs indignantly.

"Er..." Yusuke sweatdrops. "Just thought we oughta leave them alone."

"Yes, it is a rather private matter." Kurama glances back at the two.

"Gee, couldn't tell." You scowl and snarl at the two guys.
"You two are acting suspicious." You eye them both and rub your arm.
"You didn't have to drag us! Just say so next time!" You sweatdrop indignantly.

Kurama apologizes for Yusuke's less than tactful withdrawal, but doesn't elaborate any further on the matter. You sigh and change the subject.

"Does she have a place to stay? Or you think she can stay with us at Yomi's?"

"That would probably be for the best..." Kurama keeps his gaze fixed in the direction of Hiei and Yukina. After awhile the ice maiden rejoins the rest of you and Hiei disappears into the crowd.

"So... any word on yer bro?" Kin asks her, but the sad look on her face already holds the answer. Yukina looks down and shakes her head.

"Why don't you stay with us?" Kurama offers.

"Mm." She nods slightly.

"Hey, don't look so sad." Kin puts an arm around her shoulders. "I'll treat ya to dinner! I know this place outside of th' city."

"I'll be all right, Miss Kin." Yukina forces a smile and you can't help but feel bad for her.

Kin ultimately leads you all to a slightly seedy tavern of some kind outside the city, but the food smells good at least. Not sure what to order for yourself, Kin is more than glad to order dinner, and alcohol, for you.

You and Yusuke nurse some kind of ale while the cat woman throws back large quantities of hard liquor.

"Ah, come on Foxshy!" Kin offers Kurama a drink. "Drinks on me, promish!"

"No, thank you. That's quite all right." Kurama sweatdrops and holds up a hand in refusal.

"Psht! Wha' kinda legendary bandit don't drink!? Well fine, be that way... Wanna drink, Yukina-?"

"Um, no thank you Miss Kin." Yukina blinks. Kin shrugs and orders herself another, then tries to encourage you and Yusuke to drink more.

"Well, normally I wouldn't refuse a lady buyin' me drinks and all," Yusuke grins, "but I'll save getting drunk for after the tournament!"

"Sounds like a good idea." You nod and Kin makes a face.

"See you guys later." Yusuke rises and departs.

"Hmph. Shome fun you two are." Kin sticks her tongue out and you only smile and shrug.

"Maybe some other time Kin. But it is getting a bit late. We should probably get going."

After Kin downs a few more drinks, she pays off the tab and the four of you head towards Yomi's manor.

"Hate to see what catnip would do to her." You joke as you help Kin stay on her feet. Kin mumbles something about being fine and almost falls, but you manage to keep her steady.

"Are you sure?" Yukina seems doubtful of Kin's assertation.

When you return to your guest room at Yomi's, Kurama helps you put Kin to bed.

"Bedtime big sis." You sweatdrop.

"Mrrw..." She curls up. "Sorry... Kohaku... I just... wanted..." She trails off into incoherency.

"Who is Kohaku?" Yukina blinks.

"I think that might be her little sister." You shrug, wondering if you're correct or not. "She hasn't really talked about her, but the way she does, I think her sister must have meant a lot to her." You get yourself ready for bed. Yukina looks down, lost in her own thoughts.

"Don't give up." Kurama reassures the ice maiden. Once the light is out you drift to sleep, but awaken sometime in the middle of the night from a nightmare about...

The Great Mother.
Your father.
Stupid giant bugs!

You sit up and look around the darkened room. You can hear Kin's familiar purrs, but there's another sound, coming from beyond the other door in the room. As far as you know it leads out into a garden. Sounds like crying. You look around the room again. Kin is still curled up and Kurama is still asleep, but Yukina's futon is empty. Against your better judgment you straighten your yukata and step outside.

"Yukina-?" You shut the door quietly behind you. She's sitting on the edge of the wooden walkway around the garden.

"Oh, I'm sorry... did I wake you?" She stifles a sob.

"No... I had a bad dream." You sit down beside her and watch as she brushes several round jewels from her lap.

"Oh..." Yukina wipes her eyes and the tears that fall turn into jewels.

"Couldn't sleep?" It's a stupid question, but you aren't really sure what else to say.

"N-no. I was... thinking about my brother." Yukina stares down at the crystallized tears littering the ground around her.

"I'm sure you're brother is out there somewhere, and you'll find him event-" You awkwardly try to reassure her, but she shakes her head and interrupts.

"No! No it isn't that at all." She shuts her eyes tight to try and hold more tears back.

"Then... why are you crying?" You furrow you brow in confusion.

"I've known him for awhile now." She hides her face in her hands and sobs. "But I've been waiting. Waiting for him to tell me himself." Tears slip out from behind her hands and clatter on the wood as they turn to gems.

"Yukina... What do you mean?" You put an arm around her trembling shoulders. If you hadn't been confused before about this whole brother situation after what Kin told you about ice maidens, you are definitely confused now. It's hard to understand what Yukina says because she's weeping, but you do your best to follow what she tells you.

"When I realized... I knew he had to know too. There just... wasn't anyway he couldn't have known. I thought, maybe, he was afraid to tell me... so I-I gave him my mother's stone and I asked him to help me find my brother, as a sign that he didn't need to be afraid. That I'd accept even though none of the others did!"

"Wait... wait." You try to process this information. She asked Hiei... she asked her brother... Hiei is her brother!? "So you're saying... Hiei is your brother?"

You can almost hear the light bulb of understanding click on in your mind as Yukina confirms the information with a nod.

"I wanted him to know it was all right... that I would accept him!" Yukina repeats as she sobs into your arms now. "But... I guess he doesn't want anything to do with me..."

"Yukina..." You hug her until her until she calms down, not quite sure what else to do. Finally she pulls away and sniffs quietly.

"I'm sorry, I've kept you up Miss Chiyori..."

"No, it's all right. Sometimes we all need a good cry." You smile sympathetically.

"Maybe..." Yukina starts gathering up the small scattered gems. "But it's a bit messy when I do." She forces as smile as you help her gather them up.

"Um... Can I ask you something?" You inquire, and she nods in response. "Why haven't you said anything?"

"I... didn't want to force myself on him... I suppose the answer is clear enough now though. With what we ice maidens did to him... If he hates me, I understand." Yukina stands up. "I just wish, he would have said so one way or another..."

"I don't think he hates you. I mean, I don't know him well or anything, but..." You shrug and offer her tear gems you've helped gather.

"No, I don't need them." She places the ones she has in your hands. "Thank you for listening to me, Miss Chiyori."

You nod numbly and watch her go back inside, thinking...

Okay, I totally wasn't expecting any of this when I woke up.
Well Hiei just went from jerk to jackass in my book.
Poor Yukina... she was so upset about it.

What have you gotten yourself into now? Guess you'll have to see how things pan out in the next part, now won't you? And actually, I rushed the proofing of this part because I really wanted to have another chapter out before I go to Anime Expo over the 4th of July. Normally I'd like to have the next two drafts typed up completely before posting a new chapter, but I haven't gotten the draft for part 8 typed up yet. Oh well, I'm apologizing now in the event of any delays caused by this, by AX, by jury summons, or by road trips. ^^ Oh, and some of the character's opinions of you in the answers will be the same as the last part. As the story progresses more they'll change. I'm still working out this new results set up.

Jury summons? Huh?
You aren't welcome.
See you later!

Chapter 6
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