Title: Stella Cadente (Shooting Star)

Author: Befanini
Website: http://www.fanfiction.net/~befanini

Disclaimer: I wish. That's all. XD Just a mad fangirl's daydreams.

Rating: T

Summary: Dream as if you'll live forever. Live as if you'll die today. One shot Sanzo/Gojyo.

A/N: Title refers to the Gensomaden arc marked by the shooting stars, wherein this particular fic takes place. And all because the kappa calls out to the monk so desperately… I'm so pathetic. XD

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Goddammit. NO!

"Homura."

He struggled to his feet, unbelievable pain slicing through him. He could smell the blood, his blood, metallic, coppery, as it poured out of the gash in his chest. His flesh screamed in agony as he swayed, and stumbled, and pointed his gun. Pointed it at the smug, grinning face of the god. Stupid, fucking shit.

BANG!

The bullet whizzed through the air and disintegrated; and a pair of mismatched eyes stared mockingly at him across the distance.

"You… sonafa.. b—bitch.."

He fell.

And before he blacked out, he heard screams echo through his head. Desperate, fraught, shattered. Anguished.

"SANZO! Sanzooo! Sanzo…"

Funny, but the voice didn't belong to the bakazaru.

Just before darkness took him, he recognized who it was that was kneeling beside him, gathering him close with surprisingly gentle – and trembling – arms, and gasping brokenly in his ear. "You stupid, STUPID shit! You goddamn BASTARD… God, no, NO!"

And then came welcome, blessed oblivion.

---

XxXxX

---

Flowers were good. Women were better. But nothing came close to a premium bottle of—whoa. Hold that thought.

So THIS was the guy. Damn. Make that: nothing compared to six feet of lavender-clad Heaven Incarnate – with that skin made of moonlight and that hair like the spun gold of the sun…

And then he saw those eyes. In all of Tenkai there were no eyes of that color. Only the Goddess of Mercy came close. But wait – ah yes, he was her nephew, wasn't he…

"You goddamn monkey! I told you not to wander off!" the blond snarled, and if possible he was even sexier when he was angry.

"Owowowow…" the little runt winced, while the Marshal looked on amusedly.

He decided it was time to step in.

"Hey, lighten up, Mister," he drawled, as he slung an arm casually over the stunning blond's shoulders. Immediately he felt electrified by the contact. God, but the guy smelled good… He leaned his face close until a mere two inches separated them, and continued. "Kids will be kids, don't you agree?" He grinned impishly.

Shove. Hiss. Snarl.

"Don't touch me! Who the hell are you!"

Damn. And FEISTY to boot! The urge to crush the blond beauty in his arms and ravage those lips was starting to get overwhelming.

He arched his eyebrows coolly, and purred in his low, silky voice. "I'm the one with no control of his groin or his liquor." He threw in a dazzling grin for good measure.

Konzen only raised a disdainful eyebrow, unimpressed. The blond stared haughtily at him and snorted. "General Kenren, I presume."

---

XxXxX

---

He woke up with a start, and blinked, disoriented. The rickety door of the cabin they'd taken shelter in was cracked open at an angle, letting in the cold air and the eerie gray light of dawn.

He winced and shifted, his whole body sore from spending the entire night sitting up against the wall. The dream was confusing. Those damn 'gods' must really be getting to him, if he was actually starting to dream that he was this Kenren character. He had to admit, though, it had all felt so real. Less of a dream, really, and more of… a memory.

They were all there… Goku had shackles on his wrists and ankles, Hakkai was smoking (what the hell?), and Sanzo ("Konzen") looked just as breathtaking as ever… and he had the same temper and snooty attitude, too. Of course, even back then (What the HELL are you saying, Sha Gojyo!), he, "Kenren", had been shamelessly flirting with the cold blond bastard from day one.

Gojyo jerked, suddenly remembering. He got up swiftly to check on Sanzo… and found only empty sheets. Se he was awake, then. And apparently well enough to get up and wander off without telling anybody. Typical.

He sat down hard on the makeshift bed, his knees suddenly going weak, for some stupid reason. He reached out a hand and placed his palm down on the hollow where Sanzo's head had lain, all through yesterday and last night. His fist clenched tight, and he slammed his eyes shut. "Damn you, you bastard…" he breathed.

He breathed. He drew in great draughts of air, feeling his lungs working properly for the first time in what felt like ages, since he'd watched helplessly as – since gold and black and ivory and liquid crimson fell – since…

Shuddering, he pulled out his Hi-Lites – at last – he lit up and inhaled deeply; and then he stood, walked over to Goku, and kicked him lightly.

"Oi. Somebody's awake and I think he's hungry and gone looking for food. You better run and give him the fish you caught last night."

"Huh?" Goku mumbled sleepily.

"Bakazaru! Get your lazy ass up before he comes back and starts shooting at us for sleeping in late!"

"What?" Goku jumped to his feet, fully alert. He glanced quickly at the cot, back to Gojyo, who was nodding his head and grinning widely at him, over to Hakkai, who was just sitting up, and out the door at the rapidly lightening daylight.

"Go," Gojyo ordered, shoving Goku along with his boot. The kid didn't need to be told twice. He was out of the door like a shot.

The kappa turned to Hakkai, and found his best friend running a tired hand through his hair and smiling in relief. "Thank the gods," Hakkai murmured fervently.

"Don't let him hear you say that," Gojyo drawled dryly.

Hakkai frowned and failed to get the joke, but Gojyo just shrugged dismissively. He felt so light. It was good to know he'd be annoying and teasing and insulting that damn monk for quite a while yet to come.

---

XxXxX

---

The pale figure halted on the riverbank. He winced as his wound throbbed like the devil. Maybe he shouldn't have gotten up, so soon… but then again at the moment he needed fresh air more than he needed rest. He needed to clear his head. Those damn dreams had felt all too real. The bitch had a lot of explaining to do the next time she saw fit to descend from heaven and "grace" them with her presence again. He'd make sure the next "visit" was worth wasting his time. Was he really…? Were they really…?

One thing for sure, ironically enough. The annoying bakazaru and the sly intellectual and the damn cocky redhead hadn't really changed at all… but he certainly couldn't complain of boredom down here.

The sun crested over the ridge of the hills, striking his back with its welcome warmth. He squinted, and turned. Hn. So he'd lived to see another day, after all…

And then Goku was suddenly in front of him, babbling a mile a minute. The kid was trembling, and the tears flowed in a continuous stream from great golden eyes full of relief.

He reached out slowly and placed a firm hand over Goku's head. He looked up and saw the other two silhouetted against the rising sun. Red hair blew in the soft breeze, and green eyes smiled at him in greeting.

He murmured a few gruff words to Goku, and the boy dashed off, yelling excitedly over his shoulder. "I caught them last night, Sanzo! I cooked them myself, too!" Goku disappeared into the cabin.

Sanzo slowly walked back up the bank. He looked at Hakkai, and the evidence of the man's strain in expending his chi on healing him was there in his pale face and drooping shoulders. But the emerald eyes only smiled gently at him, as Hakkai gave him a nod. "I'll go help Goku get breakfast." He turned away too.

And that left him. Funny how the cocky bastard's voice still echoed in his head. He still kept hearing Gojyo calling out his name with such raw, unbridled grief. He still heard the half-breed's quiet, furious sobs in his mind. He still felt embraced by the last whispers that reached his ears before he blacked out. "Kanzeon, help him. Please… I can't lose him, I can't…" Just before darkness took him, he'd felt Gojyo's lips murmuring brokenly against his forehead as the kappa rocked him in his arms. "Sanzo… hold on, Sanzo… Don't you fucking die on me. We need you… I need you…" Had he imagined it? Perhaps he was already delirious. "I love you so much, you bastard…"

He walked up the last few paces and met fiery red eyes gazing at him, and the savage emotion blazing in those ruby depths took his breath away. No, he hadn't dreamt any of it.

---

XxXxX

---

Gojyo watched him approach, and he had to restrain himself from offering the priest a helping hand. From picking him up and carrying him the rest of the way back. Spitting and snarling, no doubt; but ever since Gojyo had discovered (admitted to himself) this overwhelming protectiveness where their callous leader was concerned, he couldn't stop himself from wanting to wrap Sanzo selfishly in his arms and shelter him from the world.

He wasn't at all sure he was doing a good job at hiding those feelings right now, at keeping them from shining in his eyes. There was no denying the utter relief he felt from knowing that Sanzo was all right.

Sanzo halted in front of him and stared at him haughtily. Oh yes, the damn monk was back, alright. Gojyo's heart slammed wildly, as he fought back all the words that longed to spill from his lips. Instead, he gave Sanzo his trademark teasing grin and drawled mockingly. "Ah hell. I thought I was finally free of you, you arrogant prick."

Sanzo narrowed those cool purple eyes and snapped back, "Not a chance, you idiot."

And then Gojyo was groaning, thrilled, shocked, electrified, as Sanzo threw his arms around him, one strong hand cupping the back of his head, and attacked his mouth wildly.

Scorching heat rushed through his blood, his arms going carefully around Sanzo to hold him close… and Gojyo kissed him back with what felt like five hundred and more years' worth of suppressed longing and passion. He moaned softly as those lean white fingers threaded through his hair and caressed his skull, just like he'd fantasized for what felt like forever.

He shuddered, and Sanzo moaned throatily, as slick, hot tongues slid and stroked and tasted each other, as soft, moist lips slanted greedily, and their harsh breaths and deep groans of pleasure flooded each other's hungry mouths.

They broke apart, faces falling to the other's shoulder, short of breath, and yet straining against the other, as if seeking to be absorbed into each other, arms wrapped as tight as Sanzo's injuries would allow. And all past hostilities and animosities now seemed like a stupid joke in the reality of what now stared them both in the face: surrender.

Belonging.

The damnable tension and friction between them came not from being disparate souls, after all… it came from fighting against the inevitable. It was denial, and the struggle to stay apart. What a couple of prize idiots they were. And now they were stuck like magnets, and struggling to get even closer.

Sanzo had no idea in hell how he came to be there, in the circle of Gojyo's arms, for the second time in forty-eight hours. He had only meant to toss out a brusque remark and walk on past the damn annoying rascal; but then he had stared into those razor-edged eyes, and the raw need he found there, naked, undisguised, combined with the kappa's voice that still lingered in his head…

I love you so much, you bastard…

And something inside him had snapped… and propelled him forward into those strong bronze arms, and he'd lost all train of thought, all of his being overwhelmed with the yearning to taste Gojyo, to smell him, to touch him, to feel him.

It was as if he'd been journeying for half a millennia… and he was finally home.

Sanzo drew away slowly, and Gojyo let him go reluctantly, hands falling to his sides. Red eyes gazed into violet, and he knew, even before Sanzo brushed past him, with a parting growl in his ear. "I love you too, asshole."

---

XxXxX

---

"Look! A shooting star!"

"What do you know…"

"What did you wish for, Hakkai?"

"… Funny, but I can't think of a single thing."

Crimson eyes gazed into amethyst secretly in the rearview mirror, as Gojyo softly informed Hakkai, "That's because you don't have anything you need to wish for."

Hakkai was silent a moment. He looked around at them all, the four of them seated in the jeep, still stubbornly alive and whole, having triumphed over Homura in the end, and having reclaimed the Maten Sutra. Their ikkou, continuing West.

He glanced at their leader, the lone human, and remembered thinking at the time that he was never going to wake up again. He glanced at Goku, the heretic chosen by the War Prince to deliver him to his death, and he was thankful he wasn't the one designated to restore the boy's limiter this time. He glanced at his best friend, whom he had witnessed conquering his demons at last, and who he had leaned on the rest of the way up the tower, and Hakkai smiled. He looked up to the evening sky again. "I think I see…" he murmured at last.

Beside him, Sanzo met Gojyo's eyes, and allowed himself a tiny smile. I see, too. I see at last.

---

-owari-

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"Dream as if you'll live forever. Live as if you'll die today." – from the rebel of all rebels, James Dean. XD

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­Japanese mini-glossary:

bakazaru: stupid monkey

kappa: water demon

Tenkai: Heaven

Ikkou: group

Kanzeon: The Goddess of Mercy

A/N: It's a fact. Gojyo did not light up a cigarette until Sanzo woke up. XD

More visual fanart to go with my daydreams! LOL If you're interested to see, visit befaniniDOTdeviantartDOTcom. If the link doesn't work, PM me and I'll send you an alternate.

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