Rurouni Kenshin was created by Watsuki Nobuhiro, all rights reserved to Shueisha JUMP, Sony, & Anime Works.
Fanfics Notes: Lots of surprises in this one. And... *ahem* dokidoki-ness. Eheheh! Please excuse me. I really like writing that way. I'm planing on having about two more parts. I think. Okay, that's it. Enjoy! Jill 11/10/00;

Part 7: "Requests"

Even your harsh words you didn't intend to say
Can't make me forget about you
I know (I know)...

By the time Yahiko and Kenshin arrived at the clinic, Kaoru was already gone and Genzai was treating other patients. The two went down the hallway and opened the door, surprised at what they found.


“W-hat the?!”

Megumi pushed Sanosuke off of her and onto the floor. “I knew I should have locked the door…” she muttered, tying her kimono close as the two red faced samurai stared in shock, “Hai? Is there something?”

“Iie…” Kenshin stammered, his eyes moving from her to his friend on the floor, “We just came to check on Sanosuke. But it sure looks like he’s all right.”

“More than all right.” Sanosuke chuckled, sitting up on the floor. He then put his shirt back on and turned to Yahiko, “What? It looks like you’ve pissed your pants? Come on, it’s not something to be embarrassed about!”

“Yamero!” Yahiko protested, “I am a respectable samurai! I won’t tolerate this kind of indecent display! It’s as bad as Kenshin and Busu! Why the hell are you all doing this to me?!”

“Seems like you’re the one acting like a big baby!” Sanosuke growled, pulling him over by the collar, “You want to be treated like a grown up, start acting like one!” Yahiko stopped and stared at him. “You heard me! I love Megumi and I ain’t gonna improvise just because of you! Don’t even think about doing that to Kenshin and Jou-chan either! You’re just lucky they haven’t thrown you out of the house yet!”

Megumi cut in, “That’s enough… you’re being too hard on him.”

Yahiko shook his head. “No, you’re right… I’ve been selfish.” he sighed, “I didn’t want things to change. I didn’t want to think that all of you were going to get married and leave me behind.”

“Yahiko-kun…” she uttered, “Don’t be ridiculous. I’m never marrying that idiot over there.” Sanosuke’s face filled with rage but she ignored him. “And Ken-san and that girl aren’t going to leave you out of their lives. You’re important to us all.” Megumi suddenly stopped, finally realizing what Sanosuke was talking about. Regret settled in her mind. How could she had done what she done…?

Kenshin replied, “Yahiko, there are lots of changes. I’m sorry if they’re happening too fast for you. But we can’t stop it. To do that would be dishonest to our feelings. Please try to understand…”

Yahiko nodded, willing to take any advice Kenshin offered him. Sanosuke slapped him on the back. “So you’re not gonna get in Kenshin and Jou-chan’s way, okay? I’m sure Jou-chan’s going through hell. She needs him now more than ever. So give them some space or I’ll go over and kick your ass out the house myself!”

“S-Sano!!” Kenshin gasped as Megumi smacked Sanosuke about. “Oro…”

* * *
Kaoru had returned to the dojo in advance and fixed up lunch. She didn’t say much; she kept to herself most of the day. Kenshin watched over her carefully as she supervised Yahiko’s practice. He remembered Sanosuke’s words: ‘She needs him now more than ever’.

“Kaoru, I was wondering…” Yahiko said in between swings, “If you could teach me those moves… you know the ones that you learned from Keisuke.”

“Huh?” Kaoru snapped out of her daze. “Well, Keisuke was a great swordsman like I said… he invented so many of his own moves that I don’t even know them all. It’s going to be hard to teach you when I can’t even hold a shinai myself.”

“It’s all right. Just tell me what to do.”

Kenshin relaxed a little. Yahiko’s diversion had helped her not get lost in her thoughts. Still, he was worried about her. Especially in the evening - he wasn’t able to sleep. He kept thinking about how she must be troubled over her fate. He stared at the ceiling, listening to the ticking of his pocket watch inches away. Aside from his worries, he was sleeping alone, in his own room, without Kaoru. It was too much to bear. He shifted in his futon, hugging his pillow, imagining it was her, hearing her say his name softly.

‘Kaoru,’ he sighed, ‘No more of this. I need to see if you’re all right.”

With that, he got up and left his room. Tiptoeing past Yahiko’s room, from which snoring could be heard, he went up to her door. Sliding it open, he peered inside. He stood back in dismay as he saw that the room was empty, that the futon was unused.

‘Oro? Where did she go? Kaoru?’

* * *
The small candle dimly lit the woodshed. Kaoru slowly moved towards the back, being mindful of the endless of piles of junk in her path. ‘So many things… I never knew what to throw away… so I ended up keeping it all. This place will never get cleaned up…’ she sighed to herself.

At last, she stopped in front of the dark chest, left as it was since Kenshin had found it in the mess. She knelt down placing the candle off to the side. She could see the kanji for her family name engraved on the font. After tracing it leisurely with her fingers, she pulled the lid open and held her breath. The silk kimono was neatly folded and wrapped with rice paper. The strong scent of jasmine flowers filling her senses, she removed the rice paper and sat staring for a moment. She then lifted her shaking hand towards the fabric, wanting to touch it, wanting to know how it felt… but in the end she couldn’t bring herself to do it. She clenched her fist and slowly drew back, breaking down into tears.

“I… can’t… I can’t!” she sobbed into her lap, the candlelight flickering, the room becoming darker. She could feel the world getting darker. She had just a couple of days left. ‘I trained hard for over ten years… and I can barely use a shinai with these injuries… how can I stand a chance against Yashiitomo… how can I let my friends get hurt protecting me for something I created for myself… Was it all for nothing? Did I waste my life? Otou-san… I should’ve done as you said but I was so… I’m listening now… please tell me… what should I do… what should I do…’

Kenshin stood in the doorway. He was astonished to find her crying on the floor. He quickly went over and put his arms around her. “Kaoru, shh… I’m here. It’s okay.” he said softly, “Please talk to me, so I can try to help… I can’t stand seeing you like this. You’ve always taken care of all of us regardless of our past and our problems. This time let me help you. Please Kaoru…”

“Kenshin… “ she uttered, lifting her hands to cling onto his yukata as he continued to comfort her, “None of you must fight Yashiitomo. Please… just leave. Leave the dojo and don’t come back.”

“What?” He stopped and stared into her tearful face. She looked so lost. He tightened his hold on her. “No, I won’t do anything like that. I’m not going to leave you. All of us are going to stay with you during this. You should know by now - if you’re hurt or in danger, of course we’ll do our best to protect you!”

“Do our best…” She leaned her head down on his shoulder, listening to his heartbeat, feeling his fingers through her hair, “My best was never good enough. No matter what I did… I just couldn’t…”


“It’s over… He was right all along…” she uttered, closing her eyes, “I’m not good for anything.”

At these words, Kenshin lifted his head. He couldn’t believe what she was saying. It wasn’t like her at all. She was so fragile, he was afraid of her breaking apart. “Kaoru, don’t…” he whispered, “Don’t say things like that. It’s not true, none of it. You mean so much to me. I won’t let you put yourself down or give up. I love you more than anything else. Please don’t do this to yourself.”

“But I…”

* * *
“No, Kaoru! That’s all wrong!” Kamiya yelled. He and his daughter were in the dojo. She gripped the bokken and stared at his face of pure disapproval, “I want you to practice that move. Don’t come inside until you get it right. Understand?”

“H-Hai, Otou-san!”

Kaoru practiced for hours, until it was cold and dark. The swing always coming too late, too soon, too low. ‘No, that’s not right!’ she thought, ‘It was more like this! Wasn’t it? No…’ She kept on practicing, not noticing the time or the condition her hands were in.

“Kaoru, come inside this second.” Kamiya said, walking out of the house, “It’s late. It’s time to stop…”

”Not yet. I’m not ready…”

“Kaoru, do as I say!”

“I’m not finished yet!” she cried. Kamiya simply grabbed her by the wrist and forcefully pulled her into the house. “No! Wait! I can do it! Just let me try a bit more…!”

“If you were my daughter, you’d listen to me.” he said gruffly. Not another word following.

* * *
“The night before he left for the Southwest War, he was here... in the woodshed.” Kaoru murmured into Kenshin chest, “I just had turned sixteen and earned my title as ‘assistant instructor’. When I found him here, he was looking into this chest...”

* * *
“Otou-san?” Sixteen year old Kaoru stood at the doorway of the woodshed. "What are you still doing up at this hour? Don't you have to leave early in the morning?"

“Kaoru,” he uttered, not turning around, “After I leave here, you will be in charge of this place, of all the decisions that have to be made. I’m leaving it up to you.”

“I understand.” she said, walking towards him and peering down into the chest, “Is that Okaa-san’s?”

“Aa, she wore it on our wedding day. She was so beautiful and delicate…” he uttered.

Kaoru frowned a little. She never knew her mother. A faded memory she knew she loved, but couldn’t say why. “What was she like?” she asked at last, resting her hands on his shoulders.

“She was strong-willed and stubborn just like you.” he chuckled, “It took me forever to convince her to marry me. She always insisted on doing things her way. On her own. Always working herself to her limits, even when she was on her deathbed. She was so filled with life…”

“Otou-san…” Kaoru uttered, “You loved her a lot… you miss her don’t you?”

“Not so much. Because you’re so like her, I don’t have to reach back so far for memories.” He paused for a moment, sadly gazing at the kimono, “Kaoru, someday, I want you to use this kimono on your wedding day. I still strongly believe you will be happier if you give up kenjutsu.” He turned around to see her face, so unyielding in the candlelight, “Kaoru-chan, I’m giving you a choice. You either give up being a student of Kamiya Kasshin Ryu or…”

“Or what?” she gasped. He stopped, staring at the floor, “Otou-san, please don’t make me choose! You know I want to do what you say so much…!”

“Then why don’t you?!”

“Because…!” she cried, “I can’t stand by and allow these terrible things to happen! I respect you and your teachings so much! I don’t think they should just disappear when they could do a lot of good for people!”

“But Kaoru!!” he exclaimed, “This is your life we’re talking about!!”

“I know that, Otou-san!!” she cried tearfully, “But don’t you believe in me!? Don’t you think I can do this?! Don’t you…?” She couldn’t believe she started crying. To her, it was the biggest sign of weakness she had. She couldn’t believe that her father wasn’t going to object to any of this, that he didn’t believe in her. “Otou-san… I’m doing my best! Why isn’t it enough?!”

He simply got up, closing the chest. “This kimono shall only be worn by respectable members of the Kamiya family.” With that, he turned and left the woodshed, leaving her on her knees in tears. The door slamming close.

* * *
“Kaoru…” Kenshin pressed his forehead against her, “It’s okay. He was only hard on you because he was afraid… I totally understand that. I’ve been so afraid of losing you that I sometimes push you away. It’s just… sometimes we’re so busy protecting something, we often forget what’s important.”

She closed her eyes, her tears wiping off onto his face, “I… I just can’t go on like this anymore… feeling like I’ve let Otou-san down… that I’ve let Keisuke down… I can’t give up, but I can’t protect Kasshin Ryu… I can’t do anything…”

“You keep saying that you ‘can’t’.” he told her, “There are so many things you can do, but you want so badly to live up to everyone’s expectations, you get confused on what to do. Kaoru, have you ever thought about what you want?”

“I…” She searched her mind, unable to find an answer, “I know what I don’t want… I don’t want Kasshin Ryu to disappear; I don’t want to dishonor my father or Keisuke; I don’t want anyone to be killed for my sake; I don’t want to die…”

“I’ll take care of all of this. What other things do you want me to do for you?”


He dried her tears and stroked her cheek, “I might not be successful, but I’ll do my best. Just tell me what you want me to do. Do you want me to go to your father’s grave and personally explain everything to him? Do you want to hide away somewhere until it’s safe? Do you want me to fight Yashiitomo? I’ll use a shinai if you prefer me to.”

Kaoru smiled briefly. “Kenshin…” She lowered her head, thinking hard, ‘What is it that I want…?’ She searched her mind and her heart, only coming up with one thing, “I… want you.” she uttered, lifting her eyes to him.

“Then…” He kissed her. “You can have me.”

“Uh… what… huh…?” she gasped as he picked her up in his arms, “Kenshin… ?”

“Whatever you want, Kaoru.” he said softly, “Aishiteru.” She finally relaxed, kissing him deeply as he carried her out of the woodshed. The candle inside flickering out.

* * *
Yahiko woke the next morning. Stretching, he got changed and picked up his bokken. ‘Man, I’m up early. It sure is worth it!’ he thought with a yawn, as he walked towards Kaoru’s room. She had told him she would help him learn the new moves that morning. But when he pulled open the door, the room was empty. ‘Eh?’

So, he walked to the other side of the house, towards Kenshin’s room. “Oi Kenshin! Do you know where Busu is…?” He stopped dead in his tracks. He saw the tossed clothes on the floor, the paired form under the blanket. “Eeep!!”

“Oro…?” Kenshin sleepily murmured at the sound from the door. He lifted his head, his long red hair falling all over his shoulders. His eyes focused and saw the frozen boy in the doorway, the sunlight peering into the room. “ORO! Yahiko!” he gasped, wide-awake.

“Uh… uh… Kaoru is…??” he stammered, pointing to the mound next to him. “Um… well… uh…”

Kenshin put on a smile. “Yahiko, could you give her just a couple more minutes. She’s a bit tired you see.”

Yahiko slowly nodded. “Yeah… say, I’ll go make you two some breakfast. Okay?” he said, quickly closing the door. Turning away, he rubbed his head, ‘It’s not so bad,’ he thought, ‘At least I know Busu will be in a good mood all day…’

“Yo Yahiko!” Sanosuke’s voice surprised him and almost made him fall off the walkway. Megumi was close behind him, “I know it’s a bit early, but Kenshin has to come with me to the police station. Those cops wanna talk…”

“Um… well… now’s not a good time.”


* * *
Inside the room, Kenshin was putting on his hakama. He searched around of his gi, but saw that Kaoru was lying on it. Sighing, he couldn’t disturb her sleep, she looked so peaceful. He tied his hair back and knelt down to her. “Ohayo…” he whispered.

Her eyes slowly opened. “Ohayo Kenshin…” she whispered back as he tucked her back into the blanket.

“Arigatou… for staying the whole night.”

“Iie. I wanted to.” she said smiling, “Aishiteru.” She reached over, her hand on the back of his head, pulling him down to her, kissing him. “Aishiteru… Kenshin…”

“Kaoru…” he murmered, her arms encircling him, “Aishiteru…”

* * *
“Sanosuke, I wouldn’t go in there if I were you!” Yahiko cried, but he didn’t listen.

“Ch! It’s ‘baby stuff’. Those two are like a bunch of mushy saps, it can’t be that bad.” he muttered, going towards the door. After he went inside, they heard a scream. “OH SHIT!”

Sanosuke backed out the room, Kenshin holding the sakabatou to his throat. “Sano…” he growled, “You should have knocked first!!!”

“Daijoube! I didn’t see anything!!” he chuckled, then added quietly, “That I haven’t seen before…”

Everyone seemed to hear him. “WHAT WAS THAT!?” Megumi and Kenshin exclaimed, their faces scary. Sanosuke turned pale and nervously hid behind Yahiko, who looked annoyed by the whole thing.

The door flew open. Kaoru was in her yukata, her hair still down. “Sanosuke no baka! You promised not to say anything!” she yelled, punching him across the face. He went flying and crashing into the wall. “Damn him…” she muttered.

“Eh?” Megumi pointed at her. She saw the shimmering ring on her finger. “Oh! I see he finally got that on you!” She then cleared her throat. “Among other things… ohohohohoho!!”

Yahiko joined in with the fun. “That explains it! I thought I felt an earthquake last night!” Both Kenshin and Kaoru turned red. “Oi! Sanosuke, didn’t you feel the earth move too??”

Sanosuke laughed, “Yare yare. Let’s leave the two lovebirds alone.” He then turned to Kenshin, “So, she got you drunk or something??”

“Oro, Sano!!” Kenshin wasn’t amused, but Kaoru went over and hugged his arm. He looked down at her and calmed down, blushing and smiling, “Everything’s going to be fine as long as we’re together. So there’s no need to worry.”

“Moreover,” his friend said, “Kenshin, get dressed. You and I have to attend a meeting at the station. Those cops have a lead on Yashiitomo’s hideout.”

And so, Kenshin got ready and left with Sanosuke, but not before kissing Kaoru goodbye. She couldn’t believe he did it in front of everyone. But she was glad, glad that he wasn’t going to hide his feelings anymore. Megumi and Yahiko went to the kitchen to make breakfast, while she headed to her room to change.

“There,” she said, tightening her obi. Just then she saw that someone standing at her door, waiting. “Yes? What is it? Yahiko?” The door slowly opened. “…what?”

Tsueng grinned. “Kamiya Kaoru, pleased to make your acquaintance.”

Onto Part 8
Back to Part 6