Sweet Dreams

Chapter 7: Battling in Confusion

© 2006 by Pyrite aka Jessi Duffour

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*You did it...amazing...you DID it!!!* I felt as if I was in a hazy void, a hand urgently shaking my shoulder: gentle, but insistent. I groggily came to.

"What did I do?" I slurred, barely intelligible.

*You saved your soul!*

"Oh, is that all. I'm gonna go back to sleep." I curled back up and sought the dreamy haze of slumber. The person sighed in exasperation and began shaking me again, a little bit harder.

*Wake up!*

Wait a minute. Saved my....

"Pyrite, wake up!"

Reality came to me in a blinding rush as my eyes flew open.

"Pyrite...it is about time that you have finally come to."

I blinked several times, my bleary vision focusing on Kunzite. His pale blue eyes gleamed in the dim light, long silver hair shimmering ethereal. I whispered dryly, my voice husky.

"Did you get the number of that truck that hit me?"

He blinked his eyes, perplexed and stared at me.

"It was not a truck. It was the Gift."

I blinked as my jest flew over his head...and shivered in the memory of what had happened. I sat up weakly and squeezed my eyes shut, hugging myself.

"It was a joke." I shivered at the memory and murmured miserably. "Please don't remind me of what happened. I don't need to think of that right now." I pulled up my knees to my chest and hugged them, resting my face on my arms and drew a ragged breath. I felt so violated, so helpless, and I fought bitter tears. I don't take well to people messing with my mind...and especially not my soul.

He was silent for a long moment then gently patted my shoulder, a brief commanding touch to bring me to myself. He then took my elbow and pulled me to my feet. I shakily stood, feeling like a sapling in a hurricane...about to be knocked over at anytime...emotionally battered.

"Come. I will take you back to your quarters. You can gather yourself together there. It is never wise to show your emotions in the Dark Kingdom. Many inhabitants here will see them as a weakness. And weaknesses are often exploited at the first chance." I looked up at him and blurted out before I thought, my judgment still impaired through my grogginess.

"Such as Endymion does with you?" My eyes widened and I covered my mouth, blushing in embarrassment. Oh, I'm in for it now! The tall, cool man blinked, caught off guard. He narrowed his eyes to gleaming slits of pale blue. I closed my eyes and steeled myself to be knocked clear to next Tuesday. I deserved it, after all, I supposed. I opened my eyes, totally surprised to see him laughing softly, his rich deep voice echoing through the great hall.

"You are becoming observant!" He smiled in approval. I blinked in surprise. Boy, does HE blow hot and cold. "It would be a good idea though, not to voice your thoughts. You have already gained Prince Endymion's ill favor unintentionally, a few remarks such as those could cause you more trouble than it is worth." Yeah, speaking of the Royal Pain... I looked around the cavernous hall and noticed that it was empty of everyone save my silver haired mentor and myself. Kunzite seemed to sense my thoughts and a sour look crossed his face.

"He and Our Queen had departed after she had given you the Gift." Yeah, well, I'm not too thrilled about its packaging and delivery. What ever happened to the good old fruit basket or a bottle of wine? The voice in my mind groaned and I heard an ethereal sound of a hand smacking a forehead.

*Darkness...and you are chosen by Metallia? Now I'M worried.* I shivered at the memory of what happened, goosebumps marching up and down my skin.

"Apparently she had been terribly...excited after delivering the Gift and had decided to play with her little Toy." I winced and glared at Kunzite. I'd had about as many unbidden mental images prompted by him as I could stand.

"Tact, Lord Kunzite, you don't have. PLEASE. I'm trying NOT to think about it." I crossed my arms over my chest and eyed the tall silver haired man levelly, ignoring his cool eyes, his face devoid of expression. Suddenly his hand snapped out, backhanding me casually. My head jerked back with the sudden force. I reeled, staggering back, almost falling over with the power of his strike. I tasted blood and looked up at his stern gaze with surprised eyes. He walked up to me, his silvery blue eyes blazing, his tall stature overshadowing me. I didn't step back, a point for bravery...or foolishness. Or maybe is it stubbornness? The lines between them are fine indeed. His icy blue eyes gleamed as he glared into my own. I met his gaze evenly.

"My, what a nasty sharp tongue you have, you Obnoxious Little Rat." I grinned up at him.

"The better to taunt you with, My Dear." I sighed as he blinked and narrowed his eyes...apparently not having gotten my analogy.

"Little Red Riding Hood." He growled at me.

"What in the name of the Dark Kingdom does that have to do with anything?" I couldn't help but grin.

"Sorry. But when you said I had a sharp tongue, it reminded me of when Red Riding hood told the Wolf disguised as her Grandmother: 'My, what sharp teeth you have, Grandma!' and the Wolf replied 'The better to Eat you with, My Dear.'" I sighed as he looked at me oddly. Geeze, he's as dry as a martini! I shrugged helplessly after my prattled explanation.

"It was a joke."

"Your humor eludes me." Mine isn't the only one, I noticed. .

"Must be the quick wit." I paused then shook my head as he eyed me suspiciously. "That was a joke too. No insult intended."

"Ah." He waved away the subject. "Enough of this silly chatter, come with me." He turned with an imperious swirl of his cape. Shrugging, I walked behind him. I paused briefly then followed him through a shimmering portal, a circular swirl of glowing energy. I felt the same intense vertigo as I stumbled to the other side. Confused, I blinked and looked around.

"Is this the right place?" My mentor turned and leveled ice blue eyes at me.

"Do you doubt my direction sense, He Who Has No Idea Where He Goes?"

"I thought you said you were going to take me to my room."


"Well, call me crazy, but I didn't recall it being a huge arena with weapons on the walls."

"It isn't."

"This place is."

"How observant."

"I would like to think so."

"We have stopped at the training arena before returning you to your quarters."

"I sort of noticed."

"Are you being glib with me, Boy?"

"I wouldn't dream of it, Lord Kunzite." I smiled innocently. He shook his head and turned away and surveyed the arena, hiding the unbidden smile tugging at his lips. I looked at the huge, spacious cavern, circular with gleaming weapons of every size, shape and make imaginable...and many unimaginable...lining the walls. He walked up to a wall of blades and pulled a gleaming longsword from the hooks and hefted it in his hand. He then glanced at me and gestured to the arena walls.

"Choose a weapon. Choose wisely." I nodded and walked likewise to the wall of blades. I took a thoughtful moment scrutinizing the wide assortment. I glanced at a huge Halberd, the blade as long as I was tall. I walked past it, knowing full well I probably couldn't pick it up, much less wield it. Strength wasn't by a far cry an attribute of mine. There were daggers and knives. Fast, deadly. But against Kunzite's blade, leaving me without defense. Something high on the wall caught my eyes. I looked up and saw a curved Katana high on the wall of blades. Slightly shorter than a normal Katana, it's slender curved blade was in a golden sheath. I reached up, trying to reach it, but I was a few feet too short. I jumped as high as I could, but my fingers only brushed the hilt teasingly. I blew my bangs out of my eyes in frustration and tried again...unsuccessfully.

"This is pathetic." I glanced defensively at the tall man as he walked to the wall and pulled the blade off and handed it to me. I grinned sheepishly, taking it in both hands.

"If you think THAT was bad, just wait until you see me hold this blade. I've NEVER even touched a Katana before!!!" He shook his head and sighed and murmured something I didn't quite catch...I think it was in Japanese.

I pulled the sheath off slowly, my eyes drawn to the gleaming blade. I could see the multilayer forged steel held a deadly sharp edge. I marveled how it was featherlight in my hands, the balance absolutely perfect! I gently placed the sheath near the wall and hefted the blade, feeling it's comforting balance and slight counterweight. I looked up at Kunzite as he removed his cape, gloves, and jacket, placing them lightly near the ground; his well muscled perfectly tanned bare chest and arms gleaming in the light.

He easily pulled the sheath off his blade and casually tossed it to the side, the blade flashing as he moved with a stunning, liquid grace, spinning in defensive and offensive practice moves. I couldn't help but watch in awe, at how the light gleamed off his long shimmering silver hair, his bare arms and chest. I HAD to admit, he was quite pleasurable to watch. Definitely a cutie! After his warm up practices he turned and looked at me. I snapped to attention.

"Are you prepared for your first lesson in fighting?"

I glanced down at the blade in my inexperienced hands. Drawing a deep sigh and shrugging the nervous tightness in my shoulders, I held the blade defensively, at waist level. I nodded, my face set with determination.

"Yes, Lord Kunzite."

"Then prepare for your first battle." My eyes widened.

"Here? Now?" He raised a pale brow archly.

"Do you question my judgment?" I shook my head.

"No, Lord Kunzite." I question my skill!

"Then prepare yourself." He bowed to me and I hesitantly returned his bow. He then struck a slightly crouched posture, his blade held about waist level, standing sideways. I mimicked his pose. "Fight." His word echoed through the room, my beating heart drowning out his voice in my nervous excitement. We stood there, watching each other for a long arduous moment. He smiled slightly, nodding in approval.

"At least you have sense enough not to instantly rush in." I simply nodded. Only pride kept me from admitting I was frightened.

"Thank you, Lord Kunzite." he nodded again then suddenly leapt forward, the blade slashing at my chest. I yelped in surprise, hopping back, bringing my katana to block just barely in time. A small thin line bled slightly on his cheek where my blade nicked him, pink blood startling me as it trickled from the cut. What the heck?! What IS he? He smiled over the blades.

"Very good student." I simply gulped and nodded. He suddenly spun counterclockwise, the longsword gleaming in the dim light, slashing for my neck. I ducked and slashed out with the blade in both hands, going purely on instinct. His blade pulled back and he slapped the katana away with a laugh, grabbing one of my wrists with his free hand.

"Never let your guard down."

His silvery blue eyes gleamed as he yanked me close, his face inches from mine, the cold steel blade of his longsword sliding to the hilt into my body.

The End of Chapter 7 - Goto Chapter 8

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Disclaimer: Sailormoon is the property of Takeuchi Naoko, Kodansha and Toei Animation. All characters, settings etc. are used without permission. This is an amateur fiction, and I definitely won't make any money of it.

This page belongs to Stayka's Dark Kingdom Home at http://www.dark-kingdom.de

© by Pyrite aka Jessi Duffour - Email: duffour@gmail.com

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