Title: When We Remembered - The Wall
Author: Lok
Pairing: Gojyo/Sanzo (Kenren/Konzen)
Rating: R for excessive f-word-riddled banter in and out of sexually awkward situations

Summary or description: After a night at a cursed hot spring, Sanzo starts dreaming about certain previous incarnations engaging in some risky business.

Disclaimer: Saiyuki doesn't belong to me; I just play here.
Website: http://chained-lok.livejournal.com/



When We Remembered


Chapter 2: The Wall


That morning, Sanzo woke up pressed up against a hot lovely something.  His back seemed to be closest to the source of heat, so he rolled over, wanting only to nestle deeper into that uncommon warmth.  A weight restricted his chest and his hands groped at it, trying to dislodge it so he could turn properly.  His fingers touched firm muscle that tightened around him on contact.

Frustrated, Sanzo cracked open an eye.  His vision adjusted quickly to the soft dawn light and he noted with curious detachment that the object across his chest – his naked chest – was a well-proportioned arm, tanned, toned, and wrapped around him as though he were the sort of creature one was wont to hug and cuddle.  Since Sanzo knew himself to be not at all the cuddlish sort, this image made no sense, so he bypassed it and moved on to the body the arm was attached to.

Whoever uses taboo as a bad word has never seen red hair spilling across a pillow at sunrise.  The pillow almost seemed to be smoldering.  Sanzo swallowed and felt the tingle of breath against his skin as a nose nudged up to his shoulder.  He reached over and brushed back some of that hair to trace twin scars. 

Definitely the kappa.  Right.  And last night they'd… right.

But he'd finally gotten that dreamless sleep.

Still sticky though.  Carefully, Sanzo peeled back the arm and extricated himself.  Gojyo shifted and muttered something, but didn't wake.  Sanzo slipped off the bed and tugged at the twisted robes and jeans that haphazardly gripped his lower half.  With a little fumbling, he located his black shirt on the floor and pulled it back on. 

The door handle felt cold against his skin.  He paused for just a moment, but didn't let himself look back.

Shower first.  Then I can think.




 At breakfast, both of them acted as though nothing had changed.  It was a surprisingly easy pretense.  So he'd fooled around with the kappa to easy some tension – so what?  What they'd done hardly even qualified as sex.

Sanzo paused halfway through chewing a piece of food.  Did that mean he was still technically a virgin?  Fuck, he hated that word.  Really, when it came to men that was a ridiculous distinction.  With a woman, the line was pretty straightforward.  With guys it was a much hazier mess.  And two men fooling around together… well it's not like there was a rule book on such things… he hoped.

"Hey Sanzo, you gonna eat that?"

Blinking, Sanzo looked over at the Goku's eager face and had to reassure himself that the monkey couldn't sense his bizarre direction of thought.  Wordlessly, he pushed his plate over.

"Awesome, thanks!"  Two seconds later the plate was empty and the monkey was grinning smugly at Gojyo.

"Ah, Sanzo," said Hakkai, "you really shouldn't give your food away."

The kappa smirked.  "Watching your figure, monk?"

Sanzo attempted a burning look of death, but found himself watching Gojyo's fingers instead as they produced a cigarette and lit it with easy practiced motions.  He had to admit, the man had very talented hands.

Fuck.  If these were the kind of stupid, asinine thoughts he was going to be entertaining as a sexually active male, then he should have stuck with meditation.  He stood and patted his robes for his pack of smokes.  "Let's get on the road already."




An old man overheard them discussing their route as they left the village and felt compelled to offer them words of caution.  "Quickest way to the next town west is through that mountain pass over there, yup.  But you won't get past the wall, nope."

Hakkai questioned the man but they couldn't get much more out of him than that.  Sanzo chalked it up to senility and they set out towards the pass anyway.  Wall or no wall, there was no way he was hiking over some mountains when there was a perfectly good road.

Of course, the old man just had to be right.  Half way up the pass they ran right smack into a huge ass wall.  Actually, huge didn't even begin to describe it.  Snugly spanning the sheer cliff walls of the pass, it rose easily a hundred feet and looked designed to hold back an ocean.  Without a likely water source nearby, Sanzo was left wondering just what the wall was meant to keep out. 

If he craned his neck up, he could see guards patrolling the upper length of the wall, but the sound of voices drew his eyes to a fortress-like two-storey building built against the left corner.  The door facing them swing open and a man in amour walked out.  He moved with a slow, clunky swagger and sniffed the air as he approached them.

"Youkai," he declared, and spat on the ground.

"Excuse me?" said Gojyo.  "You trying to say something to us, fancy-boots?"

Sanzo glanced down and noted that the soldier was indeed wearing rather posh-looking footwear crossed with excessive buckles and polished to an impossibly dust-resistant shine.

"I smell Youkai," said the man.  "So you lot might as well go back the way you came.  We don't let that sort through the wall.

Sanzo hiked his feet up onto the dashboard of the jeep.  "I won't argue that they stink, but we will be passing through here."

The soldier scowled.  "You gonna argue with me?" He pointed at Hakkai.  "That one is clearly wearing limiters."  He shifted his finger to Goku.  "So is that one."  The finger came to rest on Gojyo.  "And that one is a child of taboo."

"Sanzo," growled Goku, "I don't like this guy.  Can we beat him up?"

"Now, now, no need to resort to violence."  Another soldier emerged from the barracks to stand beside the first.  This one's boots were not so shiny.  He clapped a hand on fancy-boots' shoulder and whispered something in his ear.  Fancy-boots just scowled harder, but he grudgingly stepped back and let Scuffy-boots take over.

"Our leader has an interest in half-bloods," Scuffy-boots told them.  "They have special permission to enter our town and meet with him if they wish.  Our leader is the only one who can authorize the passage of Youkai through the wall."

"Well, Gojyo," said Hakkai, "looks like you're our emissary."

"Smells kind of fishy to me," Gojyo muttered, but he hopped out of the jeep anyway.  "Is there at least a good meal and some beer involved in this deal?"

"You better not eat without me, cockroach!" yelled Goku.

Sanzo stepped out of the jeep and crossed his arms.

Scuffy-boots eyed him appraisingly.  "Er, forgive me if I'm not familiar with your order, monk, but it'd be best if you stayed here with –"

Sanzo jerked a thumb at Gojyo.  "If you think I'm going to leave any negotiating up to that idiot, you're crazy."

"Hey!" said Gojyo. "What are you talking about?  A dead parrot could smooth-talk better than you, corrupt monk."

Sanzo raised an eyebrow.  "And you're repertoire is what, cheesy pick-up lines?"

Gojyo smirked.  "You can't argue with success."

"If the monk wants to escort one of his pet animals, who are we to say no?" said Fancy-boots.

Sanzo cast a quick glance back at Hakkai, who nodded almost imperceptivity.  If they had to fight their way through this place, they wouldn't do it blindly.  Hakkai smiled and waved.  "Don't worry, Sanzo, Goku and I will watch the jeep for you."

"You mean we're stuck out here?" said Goku.  "This sucks.  And I'm hungry." 

"Shut up, monkey," Sanzo yelled reflexively.  He started walking towards the barracks.  "Let's make this quick."

Scuffy-boots rushed to keep step with him.  "You seem to know where you're going."

"I only see one door."

"Ah, yes… but there are procedures to follow here…"

"Buddy," said Gojyo, "you don't wanna get on his bad side.  The monk's kinda trigger-happy, if you know what I mean."

Sanzo pulled out a cigarette and lit it as they reached the barracks entrance.  "Tch.  I only shoot idiots who get in my way."




The narrow passageway up the mountain slope to the village proper was heavily guarded and designed to bottleneck any would-be intruders.  It was also a bitch to climb.  Sanzo had to toss his cigarette and was breathing heavily by the time they reached the top and were led into the compound at the village center.

"I hate stairs," Gojyo muttered, and Sanzo grunted an agreement.

The "leader" obviously had no qualms about showing off his wealth.  The room they found themselves in announced its opulence with gold statuettes, elaborately carved furniture, and rich draperies.  Sanzo wasn't impressed.

Apparently the kappa wasn't either.  "Woah, that's a lot of tacky bling," said Gojyo.

"I'll leave you two here," said Scuffy-boots, and shut the door behind them.

"Well, well, a blond and a redhead, must be my lucky day."

Sanzo's eyes sought out the new voice and found a man sprawled on a padded seat near the back of the room.  One leg was propped up on the low table in front of him and his hands idly shuffled a pack of cards.  So this was the town's so-called leader?  He looked a lot younger than Sanzo would have expected.  And as the man leaned forward a bit out of the shadows, the reason for his interest in halfbloods became glaringly obvious.  Shortish but shaggy crimson hair fringed matching crimson eyes on a face with a crooked, predatory smile.

Sanzo glanced at Gojyo and saw that the kappa's jaw had gone slack.  This wasn't the first time they'd encountered another child of taboo on their journey, but finding one here, in a position of power no less, was more than a little unexpected.

"You're…" Gojyo only managed the one word before his voice dried up.

"You can call me Han," said the man across the room.  He gestured at the two chairs conveniently placed at the table.  "Care to join me for a game, boys?  I hear you want through the wall."

Sanzo narrowed his eyes.  Everything about this place and this man put him on edge, but he didn't want to show it.  He approached the table cautiously and planted himself in one of the chairs.  Gojyo did the same a moment later.  You better not say anything stupid, kappa, Sanzo willed silently.  In situations like this, he would have preferred to have the more insightful and restrained Hakkai at his side. 

"You must be thirsty," said Han.  "What can I offer you?  Wine?  Beer?"  His eyes lingered critically on Sanzo's robes and sutra, "Water?"

"Oh man, a couple of beers would really hit the spot," said Gojyo.  He slapped a hand on Sanzo's shoulder.  "Don't worry, the corrupt monk drinks like a fish."

"That so?" said Han.  "Well I won't ask what a Sanzo monk is doing all the way out here.  But I am curious as to how he came to be in the company of two youkai and a halfblood."

Sanzo fished out his pack of Marlboros from his robes, letting his fingers graze reassuringly across the cool steel of his gun.  "You seem to be putting a lot of effort into keeping youkai out of your town."

Han started dealing cards.  "Is that your way of asking me if I'm a self-hating child of taboo?  I could ask the same of your red-haired friend."

"It's not like that," said Gojyo, a little too quickly.

Han raised an eyebrow.  Sanzo noted the stiffness in the kappa's shoulders.  He hoped Gojyo wasn't going to get defensive.  He really wasn't in the mood to put in the effort to keep the kappa under control.  He wanted out of this place.

"Are you going to let us through, or are we wasting our time here?" he asked.

"Yeah, just tell us what your creepy wall is all about," Gojyo added.  "Some of your guards out there are real dicks, by the way."

Han chuckled.  "Straightforward and blunt, I respect that.  I thought we could get friendly first, but if you insist… the wall isn't mine.  That is, it was built by my father, who hated outsiders, loathed travelers, and absolutely despised youkai.  Not that that stopped him from using them as he pleased, or yours truly would not be sitting here.  My father is dead but the wall remains and frankly I have no particular desire to alter the protocols."

Sanzo played with the pack of cigarettes in his hands and finally tapped out a stick.  "I don't need the life story.  Just answer the question."

"Will I let you pass through?  Perhaps.  But I like to know who comes and goes through my gates.  So relax.  Have a drink with me.  Convince me that your companions aren't dangerous."




Now that he had a few beers in his belly, Gojyo felt a whole lot better about the situation.  It had been a bit of a shock to find another guy of his heritage up here, but a lot of strange things had happened lately – this at least was one he could take in stride.  It helped that the cards on the table seemed to be favouring him tonight.  He had amassed a nice pile of winnings and had a sweet hand going to boot.  Han laughed at all his jokes.  He hadn't quite figured out the guy yet, but his presence soaked up Sanzo's attention, and that was all he could ask for at the moment.  Gojyo wasn't quite ready to be alone with the monk.

He watched Sanzo through the curtain of his hair.  The monk could be a hard read sometimes when he clamped down those walls of his and retreated behind that stiff mask.  But teasing that mask down was Gojyo's favourite game and tonight all sorts of tells kept flickering across the monk's face.  Funny, he got that same little line between his brows when he was just about to… woah, woah.  Don't need to think about that right now. 

He won the hand like he'd predicted and smirked as he arranged his large mound of chips into nice tall stacks.  He hoped his luck kept up.  Han was obviously loaded and it'd be nice to have some money in his pocket that hadn't been leeched off of Sanzo's gold card.  Not that he was playing with his own money now, but still….

Sanzo emptied the beer he'd been sucking on and stubbed out his cigarette in the ash tray.  "Washroom?"

Han gave him a quick set of directions and Sanzo left the room, but not before shooting Gojyo a look that said behave.  Gojyo rolled his eyes.  What did he think he was gonna do?  He reached over and tapped his cigarette against the ashtray.  Annoying monk.  The dreams might be gone but things between them still felt unresolved.  It wasn't like he'd expected the Sanzo to still be in his room when he woke up, but…

A light touch on his hand jerked Gojyo out of his thoughts.  Han brushed a hand through his hair and leaned forward until Gojyo could feel breath tickling his ear.

"So," said Han, his voice low and deepened, "What do I have to do to get you in my bed tonight?"  His fingers curled around Gojyo's wrist and rubbed lightly up the underside of his arm.

Gojyo coughed and dropped his cigarette.  He searched Han's eyes hoping to find joking mirth there, but those red orbs burned with something much more sensual.  Gojyo swallowed and faked a smile.  "Sorry man, I don't swing that way." 

He heard the doubt in his own voice and prayed Han didn't pick up on it.  Fuck.  Where the hell did this come from?  He crossed to the other side one night and he was suddenly a bright blip on this guy's gaydar?

Han pulled back slightly, but his fingertips remained on Gojyo's hand, feathering across his knuckles.  "You sure about that?"

The air seemed suddenly thicker in Gojyo's lungs.

"We're children of taboo," continued Han.  "We were born unnatural.  Coloured by passion.  People think that chains us, marks us.  But it doesn't.  It frees us."

Han's other hand disappeared under the table, and Gojyo felt a warm pressure on his knee.  "Society rejects us, so why should we be expected to follow its rules?"

"You're preaching to the choir, man.  I live how I want; do what I want," said Gojyo.  He gulped down another mouthful of beer and licked his lips, avoiding the other man's intense gaze.  Way too creepy.  Like looking in a mirror.  He didn't really wanna pick a fight.  The beer and the good hands he'd been getting had put him in a nice, lazy mood.  Maybe if he just ignored him, the guy would take the hint. 

"And what you want is to play lackey to that foul-tempered monk?  I can't say I see the appeal.  But to each his own, I suppose.  He is a rather pretty monk.  Say, if you are determined to reject me…" the hand on Gojyo's knee crept a little higher up his thigh.

Gojyo squirmed in his seat.  People often pawed all over him while he played cards… well, chicks anyway, but this guy was pushing his boundaries, and that was saying something.  Why the fuck wasn't Sanzo back yet?  If that hand moved any higher up his thigh he was gonna pop this presumptuous little shit one in the gut and be done with it.  "Look, man…"

"I don't suppose he would be amenable?  Or is he actually into the whole religious chastity thing?"

Gojyo's jaw dropped a little.  His chair scraped loudly against the floor as he violently pushed it back and stood.  "Dude, who the fuck do you think you are?"

Han grinned, revealing his perfect white teeth.  He leaned across the table, propped up on his elbows, and shot Gojyo a sultry look from under the unruly fringes of his hair.  "Someone who can be very nice to you if you let me."  Reaching out, he slipped two fingers under Gojyo's belt and tugged him closer. 

Sanzo, of course, chose that moment to walk back into the room.  The monk caught sight of them and froze, halfway through the doorway.  Gojyo's stomach flip-flopped helplessly.  Shit, this can't look good.  Shit!  Quickly, he dislodged Han's hand from his belt and tried to act cool.  "Yo, Sanzo – you took so long I started to wonder if you fell in."

"Tch." Sanzo shrugged and the surprise that had been written across his face gave way to his usual pissy façade.  "Looks like you found a way to amuse yourself."

"It wasn't…" Gojyo stopped and bit his tongue.  Fuck.  No, he wasn't gonna do this here.

Han's eyes flickered between them.  Suddenly, he chuckled softly and sat back.  "Ah, so that's it."  Using the table for leverage, he pushed himself to his feet and yawned loudly.  "Forgive me, as much as I have enjoyed your company, I must retire.  I'll send word of my decision in the morning.  Until then, please make use of the guest quarters through that door on your right.  I'll make sure your friends are given rooms in the barracks."

Han sauntered towards the door, but when he reached Sanzo he paused and leaned in close with flagrant disregard for personal space.  "We so rarely have guests, I'm afraid we only have one room made up, but if you would prefer separate lodgings I can instruct my servants to accommodate you.  The room across from mine can be outfitted without too much trouble…"

"One's fine!" Sanzo snapped.  He pushed past Han and stomped across the room, wrenching open the guest room door.  "Kappa!" he barked, and Gojyo jerked from his frozen stance to stumble quickly through the opening, narrowly avoiding the kick Sanzo aimed at his backside.  Behind him, he heard Han chuckling again.

"Sweet dreams, my fellow taboo child."






Inside the guest room, Gojyo watched as Sanzo paced around, stripping down the top half of his robe in short jerky movements.  Only the sutra he handled with care, folding it and tucking it into the drawer of the bedside dresser.  Beside the dresser stood the one large bed that dominated the middle of the far wall.

Gojyo swallowed.  "Uh, y'know, the guy did offer us another room, Sanzo.  If y'want I can get out of your hair and—"

Sanzo glared at him over his shoulder, arching an eyebrow.  "You want that pervert crawling into bed with you in the middle of the night?"

"W-what?  That's not… Hell no!"

"Well neither do I."  Sanzo flipped back the sheets and crawled into one side of the bed.  He turned so his back was to Gojyo and tucked himself cocoon-like into the covers.

Gojyo eyed the door, then sighed and kicked off his boots.  A heated thrill began to pool in his groin but his head felt so twisted that it hurt.  Fucking Sanzo.  What the hell kind of game was the monk playing with him?  Part of him wanted to jump the monk right now, pin him down to that bed and make him scream his name.  Another part was telling him to run far and fast into the arms of the nearest willing chick and fuck her until he felt like a man in charge of his own life again.

His hands hesitated at his belt, wondering if he should just sleep in his jeans.  Then he looked at Sanzo, rolled up in those sheets showing no skin whatsoever, and one side of his mouth quirked up.  He stripped down to his boxers.  That's right.  I'm the fucking sex god here.  And if Sanzo doesn't like it, he can sleep on the goddamn floor.

Gojyo flopped onto the bed and shimmied under the covers.  He shifted around, trying to get comfortable.  He began to feel more confident.  Sanzo hadn't attacked him yet, hadn't even wacked him with his fan.  Snaking out a hand, he brushed back the soft golden hair at the base of Sanzo's neck and touched a finger to the skin there.  Sanzo twitched and his skin goosebumped.


The hard edge in the voice made him pull back his hand.  He feigned a sleepy murmur.  "Hmmm?"

"Stop breathing like a fucking dying cat and go to sleep."




The cold seeped into his skin, down to his bones and Sanzo shivered.  Blindly, he reached for the covers that seemed to have fallen off him and tried to nestle back into them.  No such luck.  Tugging did nothing at all; they were caught under something heavy.  Muttering a thread of curses, Sanzo cracked open his eyes and sat up.  Enough moonlight streamed through the window for him to make out the forms of the furniture that cluttered the room.  The bed creaked and he turned his head to see the kappa sprawled out on the bed beside him, shifting a little in his sleep.  The sheets had caught in a tangled mess around the idiot's hips and legs but despite his naked chest he slept on as though oblivious to the chilly air.

Sanzo ground his teeth, tempted to just push the kappa off the bed entirely in revenge for stealing the sheets.  But he found himself staring instead at the red hair fanning the pillow, the slightly parted lips, the tanned muscular torso stretched in perfect abandon.  One time wasn't going to be enough, was it?  He sighed.  These… desires were so infuriating.  He may have managed to banish the dreams, but the fragmented memories of them still haunted him.  It felt like something had awakened in his body, something he had kept under lock and key so long that its presence was foreign and frightening.  Dammit, why did it have to be the kappa?  Why couldn't it be some nameless stranger that he could leave behind if things turned sour?  Or someone safer.  Hakkai was safe – he was even more of a repressed intellectual than Sanzo.  He could talk to him precisely because he could process things in that abstract, detached way.  And Goku.  Goku was safe, unfailing in his loyal, blind devotion.  Hakkai and Goku both owed him for the changes he'd brought in their lives and though he didn't really like to think of it in those terms, that made them trustworthy in a certain way that made it okay for them to be around.

But Gojyo…Gojyo was most definitely not safe.  Honestly, he didn't know why the kappa had agreed to partake in this wretched journey in the first place.  Whenever he'd actually gone to the trouble to ask, he'd only been met by one of those glib, infuriating responses like I had nothing better to do.  Bullshit.  Maybe he'd gone along just because of Hakkai.  The thought of that caused Sanzo's stomach to tighten in a strange way.  He shook his head, trying to dispel the train of thought.  A sudden chill up his spine reminded him why he'd woken in the first place.

He tugged on his corner of the sheet again.  It didn't give.  He braced a foot against Gojyo's thigh and jerked the sheet hard.  A bit came loose.  He wrestled with it, muttering death threats against the kappa, and finally Gojyo unconsciously tucked his legs up just enough for Sanzo to rescue the sheet from beneath them.  He unwound the rest of it and wrapped it around himself.  He started to settle back down, but an odd shape out of the corner of his eye made him look back.


With the concealing covers removed, Sanzo now had a front row seat to the very obvious tent jutting from the kappa's boxers.  Pervy cockroach.  He better not be dreaming again.  Or maybe it had just been the friction from him pulling on the sheets.  For some reason, Sanzo couldn't tear his eyes away.  The other night he hadn't really gotten a good look at any of the… important parts. 

Feeling his cheeks heating, he glanced up at the kappa's face and assured himself that Gojyo was still fast asleep.  If tearing the blanket out from under him hadn't stirred him, he must be pretty far under.  Sanzo licked his lips.  Fuck, these thoughts… It was just curiosity, really.  Like the first time he ever played with himself.  It couldn't be helped.

Maybe if he just looked.  Gojyo was out of it; he wouldn't know shit.  Then he could stop trying to imagine it and get some peace.

Tentatively, he reached out and poked Gojyo's hip.  The kappa didn't react at all.  "Gojyo," he whispered.  "You awake?"  Nothing.  He shifted until he was kneeling right beside him.  Still nothing.

He slipped his fingers under the waistband of Gojyo's boxers and gently pulled them down just enough to spring his erection free.  Damn.  No wonder the kappa was always being led around by this thing.  It clearly redirected all the bloodflow from his head.  Sanzo brushed his knuckles against the velvety flesh, watching Gojyo carefully as he did so.  He thought he heard the kappa's breath hitch a bit, but that was it.

One side of Sanzo's lips curled into a little smirk.  Getting the kappa all worked up while he was in no position to do anything about it suddenly seemed like a brilliant idea.  He wrapped his fingers completely around Gojyo's shaft and gave an experimental squeeze, feeling the blood pulse under the surface.  This, at least, was familiar enough territory.

As he pumped, he watched the reactions that cascaded through the sleeping man with devious delight.  It was like a delicious, sweet revenge for all the years of teasing.  The kappa's breathing deepened.  His fingers twitched, clutched, then relaxed.  His head tilted back and little grunts and breathy sighs escaped his lips.  When Sanzo tightened his grip in a corkscrew motion, Gojyo hips actually snapped up and thrust into his hand. 

Startled, Sanzo backed off for a moment, afraid he'd gone too far and Gojyo would wake.  As soon as he pulled back his hand though, the kappa murmured and settled back down into stillness and deep regular breaths.

He should stop.  He should really stop now.  But when would he ever get this chance again?

His eyes drifted back down.  An image from the dream kept flashing in his head.  He licked his lips.  Fuck it.  No one would ever know, right?

Just… a taste.




The next morning, Gojyo couldn't shake a troubling feeling of confusion, like someone had rearranged his headspace and things weren't in their usual places.  He couldn't understand it because he'd woken up totally rested and feeling like a million bucks.  Feeling so good, in fact, that all the awkwardness with Sanzo barely phased him at all.  He'd floated through the morning with the kind of light step that he usually only got after a good roll in the sack.  And that's what unsettled him, really.  Mornings weren't really his thing, not after all the years he'd spent quasi-nocturnal.  And sex had been the one thing not on the menu last night after Sanzo saved him from that perverted half-breed.  Ha, feels good to say it to someone else for a change.

Sanzo… Sanzo had been avoiding his eyes.  Which wasn't unexpected, but… dammit he'd totally missed a golden opportunity last night to figure out what the monk wanted to do about everything that had happened between them.

They sat in the reception room where they'd played cards the night before, waiting for Han to come give them his verdict.  Gojyo had to wonder how a town that obviously enjoyed long-standing prejudices against youkai could ever accept a half-breed as their leader.  There had to be a bigger story there.  And what had happened to the previous halfbreeds who had sought to pass through here?  Had they all been thoroughly sexually harassed as well?

A door slid open and both he and Sanzo turned towards the noise.

Han waltzed in, wearing a black uniform.  His hair was slicked back and he looked a lot more polished than he had last night.  He strode right up to where they were sitting and put a hand on each of their shoulders.  "Mornin' boys," Han drawled.   Damn bastard can't keep his hands to himself.

Sanzo wiggled out from under the hand.  "Well? Have you made your decision?"

"I think we can come to an agreement," said Han.  "But I would really prefer you to stay another night.  We can bring up your friends from the barracks of course.  How about I treat you both to a nice big breakfast for your trouble?"

Sanzo's gun appeared in his hand.  He twirled it casually on a finger.  "I don't think so.  We're not vacationing, and I don't care for your kind of hospitality."

Han eyed the gun, but didn't back off.  Instead, he leaned up against Gojyo and said in his ear, "He's a real bitch, ain't he?  I understand why you keep him though.  Even I don't swallow."


When he saw the gun come up, Gojyo ducked instinctively.  The sound of the shot momentarily deafened him and he blinked up at Sanzo, wondering why the hell the monk would choose to shoot at him now.  Sanzo though, was looking past him, a stunned expression on his face. 

Gojyo turned his head and saw Han sprawled on the floor.  His brain finally caught up to what had happened.  "Holy shit, you shot him!  What the fuck?!"

Sanzo stared down at the gun in his hand.  "I didn't…"

Gojyo got up and kicked the body with his foot.  "Think he's dead?"

"I don't care.  He was an asshole."

"Sanzo… sometimes you're really fucking scary."

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