Fluffy's Futures: Cara Ch. 05byVixandra©
I awoke the next morning, startled by a sound that I hadn't made, reaching for my gun hidden in the headboard before fully aware of my surroundings. The arm thrown around my waist tightened as I moved, bringing the prior evening back, waking me up the rest of the way. Easing down and leaving the gun in its hidden holster, I rolled over to face Samu, contemplating his face as he slept.
His thick lashes looked darker against his cheeks, face relaxed and at ease. A lock of hair fell across his face, prompting me to reach up my hand to brush it away. The touch of my hand against his face made his eyes open, blinking rapidly, to clear away a lingering dream perhaps.
"Good morning," I whispered softly, hand on his cheek still.
"Yes, it is," he answered with a boyish grin. "Best I can remember at the moment."
I felt the blush from the night before returning in full force as I answered, "I... um... yeah. Sleep good?"
"Yeah," Samu said, chuckling over my unease. "What time is it?"
I shot a glance at the clock that hung on the wall behind him and raised an eyebrow. "Its about ten after four in the afternoon. We slept about ten hours."
"Danny's going to kill me," Samu said with a sigh. At that moment, a fine ringing noise came from the corner of the bed room. He rolled out of bed to get the noise maker- his cell phone. Flipping the phone open he answered, "Moshi-moshi."
I listened to a pretty one sided conversation, didn't adjust my hearing so I could hear who the caller was though by Samu's face I was pretty sure it was Danny and he wasn't pleased.
The conversation included a lot of, "Heit, Danny-san"'s and other affirmations without a lot of talking from Samu. Shows who was the boss in that pairing, I thought with a roll of my eyes. I had never seen the point in being a "sure I'll do that cause you asked" kind of girl. Had caused more then a few problems when I was on the police force. Bet he was better at dealing with people with issues then I though.
Samu hung up with a sigh, running a hand through his sleep-ruffled hair. "That was Danny, obviously, and he's a bit upset with me for missing a meeting this morning. Nothing too big, just a meeting with the Iruma regional chief. Something was mentioned about how someone saw me with a strange woman before the city blacked out and were curious as to what I was up to and did I cause the black out."
My mind flew with this news- a group to possibly blame Danny's murder on after I'd done it, I thought to myself, though my face and body gave away nothing. Nor did my voice as I asked, "Are you trouble?"
"No, Danny will be okay," Samu said with a boyish grin. "I just need to get up and go back to my place, change and head into work."
"I'm glad," I said with genuine relief. I didn't want Samu in trouble for some nonsense caused by me, at least not yet. "Call me later tonight?"
"After I get off work," Samu said as he dressed. He didn't bother to leave the room though he did ask me to face away as he changed into his clothing that Meele had left folded neat and clean just inside my door. I was tempted to catch a peak of him naked but managed to restrain myself, but just barely. With effort.
I rose from the bed after Samu said it was okay to look, smiling at him in his slacks and dress shirt from the night before. Padding across the floor I looked up into his soulful brown eyes with my own blue ones, studying him, wondering why fate had brought him into my life at a time like this. Oh well, nothing worth doing is ever easy.
He seemed to study me as well before speaking. "I do wonder what goes on behind those midnight blue eyes of yours, Cara, I really do. You don't scare me but you do make me afraid for you. As if there's something your not telling me about your past that could find you and hurt you."
"Don't worry about me, I'll be okay," I whispered before kissing him, ending that line of thought for the time being. Wouldn't do to have him ask me about a past I was going to have to lie about. Like I could really tell him I was 34, an ex-cop, former state bounty hunter and currently an assassin for hire. That'd go over real well, and then he'd buy ocean front property in Arizona. Right.
I broke the kiss of when I felt both of our body temperatures rise though I only noticed it because his hand was underneath my top, working its way up to my side with the probably intent of cupping my breast. Bit too much for a first date, no matter how odd it ended up being. I took a step back, breathing deeply to calm myself.
He looked just as riled up as I did, eyes darker with tiny flecks of gold in them now that I hadn't noticed before.
"You need to go," I managed to say, though I didn't really want to. What I wanted to do was pull him into the bed behind me and fuck him until we were both exhausted and begging for mercy. What I said was, "Danny won't be happy if you linger too long."
"I know," Samu said with a rueful grin, eyes still bright. "Will have to continue this at some point."
With a Cheshire grin, I said, "That would be nice."
Samu came up to me and ran a hand through my hair, tracing the line of my jaw with his fingertips. "I think it'd be more then nice, Cara. A lot nicer."
If one could get dizzy from sudden blushing, I think I would have. I'd never been talked to like that, at least not in my own bedroom wearing pajamas and staring at a man I'd just slept with. Of course, I'd never just slept with a man before either, so I guess I was par for the course today.
"Uh, yeah," I said, licking my suddenly dry lips. With that he laughed and turned around, heading for the living room with me following behind, admiring the view. He did have a rather cute butt.
Meele was perched on the couch, reading yet another shojou manga, this on I didn't remember buying. Guess he was buying his own girly manga now, I thought though I didn't say anything. He looked up and asked as we walked in, "So, have a fun evening?"
I glared at him, an eye brow raised. "Meele, don't be a pain."
"Apparently not," he said with a wry smile before going back to his book, for all intents and purposes ignoring us.
Rolling my eyes, I lead the way to the entry way, letting Samu slide past me to the slightly lower level so he could put his shoes on. My white boots slumped forlornly over one another, odd blue stuff splattered across the toes. I hmped and picked one up, smelling the toe. Yukoi blood, absorbed by the leather for some reason. Was going to have to burn the boots if I couldn't get the scent out, which would suck because I thought they were cute.
"I did have a nice evening," I told Samu as he tied his shoes. "Even if we were attacked."
"Me too," he said standing up, shoes all tied. He held my face in hands and kissed me again. "I'll call you tonight. Will have to tell Danny who I was with. He'll get a kick out of it being you."
"What are you going to tell him?"
"That I took you out, wined and dined you and then slept with you," he said before slipping out the door laughing.
Yup, smart ass but at least it was a cute smart ass.
The rest of September seemed to fly by, me working and getting to know Samu better. The fall days brought with them an unseasonably late cyclone which caused no damage but left the skies clear and beautiful for a few days after its passing.
Meele and I were out shopping on one of these days, picking up veggies and fruits at an open air store.
I was bagging some bell peppers when he spoke.
"You're not doing your job, Cara," he told me softly in English since we were surrounded by other people. But because it was a rather rural area, English was a rare language to speak here.
I looked up at him. "What? I work, I cook, what am I not doing?"
"You're not stalking your mark," Meele said softly. "You should be concentrating on killing him, not dating Samu."
His words shot through me. "That's a bit harsh, Meele. I am doing my job."
"Slower then ever before," he said, bagging a couple of peaches. The peaches were bigger then my outspread hands. Apparently he wanted a cobbler. "Normally, the mark would be dead by now and we'd be back in Florida."
"So you want me to hurry it up, is that it?"
"No," Meele said, turning to me. "I want you to evaluate what you're doing. How you're behaving is dangerous. Why you're pussyfooting around instead of taking care of the mark. This isn't like you, to fall in love."
"I'm not in love," I said and immediately knew it was a lie. "Okay, that's not true, but I'm not letting it cloud my judgment. This is an odd case, they want it to look like a hit from an enemy gang. That takes time and finesse not to mention a good deal of research on who I'm going to set up for the job."
"If you say so," Meele said, though the look in his eyes said he thought I was shading the truth.
I was starting to get angry. "Yes, this job is taking longer then usual, but what better do we have to do? We've enough in the bank to be set for a human lifetime."
"You'll live longer then that," Meele said, "hopefully. If the council doesn't figure out you're here and kill you. Or you screw up."
"Thanks for the vote of confidence," I hissed at him. We moved to the register and paid for our produce. "Wait- who is this council? They're here in Japan?"
Meele refused to say another word as we walked back to the apartment in silence. I couldn't think of anything to say to him that would convince him that I was not "pussyfooting" around. Come to think of it, I couldn't think of anything to convince myself that I wasn't. Not a good thing that.
We were back in the apartment cooking dinner when I asking about the comment he'd made about the Council. "What did you mean by that council remark, Meele? Who are they?"
"The Council that controls all of the Yukoi activity here in Japan," Meele said, slicing bell peppers for stir fry. "Japan is the regional seat for the Asia Pacific where the Clan rulers assemble to discuss policy and such. Its also where they try hanyu into the Yukoi. I'd rather they not find out you're here. It could... cause problems."
"Like what kinds of problems," I asked seriously.
"Problems that could get you killed," Meele said softly, setting down the knife and turning away from me. "There is a very real possibility that your mother, Inu Marika could challenge you into the Yukoi."
"I don't have a mother," I said, my voice cold. "She abandoned me, not the other way around. Do you really think she'd challenge me into the Yukoi? I mean, you yourself said that she was her clan ruler and held one of the council's seats. Why would she mess with me?"
"Because you are of her blood."
"Of course I am, I'm her daughter," I said.
"That's not it," Meele said with a sigh. "You are of her flesh, of her blood line, of the true line of Inu Maru, the first dog Yukoi, founder of the Moon Wind Clan. From him come the powers of your line, the claws, strength, stronger sense of smell and touch, agility and poison or fire. The fact you can call fire to your hands without being burned, can shift into your full yukoi form without loosing your mind, proves that you are truly of Inu Maru's line, truly Marika's daughter. After seeing you, she won't be able to ignore that. None of the Council will. They'll make you join a Clan so you're under someone's thumb. You're too powerful to be left a loose end. They'd fear you'd rise against them or some such nonsense."
"What about you, Meele? Are you part of one of their stupid clans?"
"I am of your mother's stupid clan, little one," he said, his tone chastising, "the Moon Wind Clan. I was once its second in command though I gave that up after your mother gained her position as Clan Chief 32 years ago."
"Right before you found me in the US," I said, making the connection, finely understanding why he hadn't been there my first two years. I had never asked, had not seen any reason to, until now.
"Yes, right before because it took me two years to get the information of where she'd left you from Marika and to track you down," Meele said, settling down at the table to watch as I finished cooking dinner.
He was quiet until I set his plate down before him, talking between bites of food. "Thank you, Cara. Now, where was I? Oh, yes, Marika fought for her council seat along with leadership of the Moon Wind Clan and was badly wounded in the fight. I was able to heal her but the price of that was sharing some of her memories. Most specifically the ones she made in the US of how that human sorcerer captured her, how they fell in love, how she became pregnant. What he did when he found out she wouldn't give up her yukoi to become human to stay with him. She fled after that, finely strong enough to break the spell he'd cast over her. Marika absorbed the spell into her body, making her stronger, faster and more powerful. Her anger was terrible but she couldn't hurt the father of her only child. Marika gave birth in secrecy and then gave you up for adoption, giving a fake name as her own, foolishly naming your father. There was no way you'd be adopted being the daughter of a powerful sorcerer but she didn't know that. After dumping you, she returned to Japan and began her bid on the Clan Chief's spot, using her new powers to gain it.
"I left her side after I found out about you, couldn't bare to see one who had abandoned her own child to further her ambitions."
"Why do you say that, to further her own ambitions, Meele?"
Meele laughed harshly. "She knew that if it was known she had whelped a hanyu, one that might never show any powers, then she would have never been allowed to fight for the Chiefhood of the clan nor for her Council Seat. Because she's held her seat for so long and because you can take full yukoi form, there's no reason for her not to acknowledge you now but then... she left you so she'd have a chance to rule."
"Sweet gal isn't she," I asked rhetorically, rolling my eyes. "So Marika abandoned me not to save my life but to further her ambitions. What a bitch."
"Exactly," Meele said around a bite of steak and peppers. "Marika knows why I left her and has done nothing to contact me for news about you in all these years. I know she felt guilt over leaving you the way she did, but not enough to tell me about you sooner nor do anything about it herself.
"There is a possibility that the council will find out you're here. That yukoi you killed was sent by someone."
"But I haven't seen hide nor tail of any other Yukoi since I got here," I said with a shrug. "Other then the mark of course, and he's a hanyu. Not powerful enough to control even a low grade yukoi like that one."
"Are you sure," Meele asked with a raised eyebrow. "You know as well as I that it is possible to hide one's jakai, the energy that we emit. It is possible he has something similar to your bracers, though I doubt it. I've seen this Danny, he is a weak power."
"Other then his mob connections," I reminded Meele. "While he's weak as a yukoi he's very powerful as a human."
"Powerful enough his bosses want him dead," my mentor said with a snort. "You need to kill him so we can leave this country, Cara. I hate to say it but we are in danger here."
"You worry too much," I said with a wave of my hand right before my cell phone rang, its tinkling song filling the apartment. "I'm going to grab that real quick. But for the record, I think we'll be fine."
"I hope so."
I answered the phone after digging it out of my coverall. "Moshi-moshi."
"Cara," a male voice said, making me smile. It was Samu. "You doing anything tomorrow night? Its supposed to be a full moon, so the moon and stars will be visible."
I looked out a window and laughed. "There's no stars here, Samu. You know that as well as I do."
"Maybe not down there," Samu answered. His voice sounded like he held a great surprise. "But from my family temple up in the mountains, the stars are very clear."
"Oh, a mountain temple," I said coyly. "Sounds fun."
"Before that, how about you meet me for dinner at Don's Family Steak House, in Fussa? Its an easy drive from there, you can follow me up on your bike."
"I'd love to," I said with a grin. "But we'll have to eat and be at your place before sunset. I..."
"Its that time you told me about?"
I blushed, for some reason embarrassed over what my body did without my control. "Yeah. Wouldn't be good to shift from my human form to my hanyu or yukoi one in public. Might scare the locals."
"Probably," he said with a laugh. "Okay, I'll meet you there at three thirty then? Early dinner and we can have dessert at my place?"
Part of me was tempted to ask what that dessert would be, since Samu and I hadn't actually made love yet but I managed to contain my curiosity. Instead, I said, "Okay. Don's at three thirty, I'll be there with bells on."
"American slang," I answered with a grin. "Never mind. I'll see you tomorrow night, Samu."
"See you then." There was a crashing sound in the background on Samu's side and I heard him sigh. "I've got to go, I'll talk to you later, Cara. Bye."
"Bye." I said before closing my phone, smiling happily. I turned to look at Meele who was studying me seriously, as if I stood in a light he hadn't seen me in before. "What?"
"You seem different when you're with him and talk with him," the dragon yukoi said with a shrug. "Softer, less hostile, easier to approach I guess. I'm not sure it's a good thing safety wise but I believe it's good for you as a person. As long as he doesn't find out you're the one who killed Danny after you do the hit."
I glared at Meele. "Thanks, hadn't thought of that yet. Not. Meele, I have had that turning around and around in my head since our first date- trust me, I know the risk I'm taking here. But if I break up with him now, I loose my best current resource on information about the mark and other Yakuza groups here I could blame the hit on."
"You're heart's going to suffer," Meele reminded me softly.
"How's that new," I asked rhetorically. "My life has never been one plus one is two. Its always five or purple or something crazy like that. I'm used to nothing being normal. Sad way of living though...."
Sad way indeed.
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