© 2008 by Plantress

This page was last modified: 2008/04/21

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A/N: And new fic. This one is about little Shion and little Manigoldo. My first time writing Manigoldo...and he took over the whole thing. -_- Of course he did that in the manga, too, so it should be no surprise. I figured that Shion and Manigoldo had at least met before, and that is what sparked this.

Manigoldo stood behind his Master feeling bored. He didn't see why he had to come along to this weird place, and it wasn't like the old man needed him for anything. So far all he had done was talk with his brother. Finding out his master actually had family had been interesting... for about a minute. Now it was just listening to two old men jabber on about the Cloths. He didn't care, he hadn't even earned his yet.

There were several interesting looking jars on a shelf near Manigoldo. Ignoring the adults, the boy drifted over to it and picked one up. He lifted the lid and frowned at the sparkly stuff inside, wondering what it was for.

"Manigoldo!" Sage's voice rang out from behind him. The trainee yelped, jumped a little and was forced to juggle the jar to keep from dropping it. He managed to get a firm hold on it, but only after he had started sneezing from the weird sparkly dust that was in the container. Sage gave him a look as his master took the jar from him and placed it back on the shelves.

"I thought you promised to behave while we were here!"

"But there's nothing to do here! Why couldn't I stay behind in Sanctuary and train?" Manigoldo grumbled back.

"If you would actually pay attention you might learn something about the Cloths," Sage answered. "I had hoped you would have figured out that's why I brought you to Jamir on your own."

Manigoldo scuffed his foot on the floor.

"I don't even have a Cloth yet," the boy muttered.

"Don't be too hard on him," his Master's brother, Hakurei or something, spoke up. "You didn't have that much patience when you were younger either."

Manigoldo looked up in surprise and found his Master have a glaring contest with Hakurei, who just smiled. After a few moments, Sage chuckled.

"I suppose we all had our faults," the Pope replied. Hakurei grinned then turned around.

"Shion, could you come out here?" the other man called. A boy came through a doorway at the back of the room. He had some of the wildest green hair Manigoldo had ever seen and was carrying several tools.

"What is it, Master?" the new boy asked.

"Manigoldo, this is my student Shion. Shion, I want you to keep Manigoldo company while my brother and I talk."

"But my training..." Shion looked at the tools in his hands.

"That can wait for today," Hakurei said, then shooed his student into the other room. "Clean up, then take Manigoldo outside and find something to do."

Shion disappeared back into the room, then came out again a few minutes later, empty handed. He looked over at Manigoldo.

"Well, come on," the taller boy said. Manigoldo followed the other boy, slowly.

When they reached the door, Shion paused and looked back into the room.

"Master, Sage-sama," he said formally before they left. Outside in the open air, Manigoldo gave the other boy a look.

"What was that all about?" The Cancer trainee couldn't help asking.

"What was what about?" Shion asked, looking slightly confused.

"Back there, the head thing," Manigoldo gestured back toward the tower they had just exited. Shion just blinked at him in confusion.

"I have to show proper respect to my elders," was Shion's response.

Manigoldo gave him a flat look.

"You can't be serious," the Cancer trainee muttered. Shion was still giving him that same confused look, so Manigoldo turned to examine the surroundings. Things out here were even less interesting than the inside of the tower. Okay, so the stone bridge that was over a nest of spikes was interesting, but only to look at. There wasn't really a lot to do here. Well...except...there was a strange concentration of Cosmo at the other end of the bridge.

Sage had just teleported them to the front of the tower (Manigoldo couldn't wait until he could learn how to teleport himself, it sounded fun), so he hadn't seen what the bridge ended at. He pointed toward the cliff the bridge seem to grow from. "What's over there?"

"That's the Cloth Graveyard," Shion informed him. "We aren't allowed to... Hey!"

The moment he had heard the words 'Cloth Graveyard', Manigoldo had set out across the bridge. That at least, sounded intresting. Shion went after him. "No one is allowed to go over there!"

"They told us to find something to do, didn't then?" Manigoldo grinned. "Besides, it's just a graveyard."

"This isn't a normal graveyard," Shion half-shouted, "there are guards to stop people from reaching here, we can't just walk into it!"

"Too late for that," Manigoldo grinned.

"What?" Shion finally looked around and realized they had reached the end of the bridge. He paled, "we have to get out of here now."

"Why?" Manigoldo kicked at one of the piles of bones laying around. "Scared of a few skeletons?"

"You don't get it those are the guards!" A nearly frantic Shion snapped. He had been told not to go come out here over and over again for a very good reason.

"What are a bunch of bones going to do...?" Manigoldo felt the question die in his throat as several cloth clad skeletons rose from the ground with ominous rattles. "Shit!"

The Cancer trainee swore and turned to go back...only to find his way blocked by several more skeletons.

"I told you we weren't allowed to be here!" Shion said as the boys backed up until they were back to back.

"Would you just shut up already!" With a growl Manigoldo lunged forward and landed a vicious upper cut on one of the skeletons. The skull broke with a very satisfying crunch. "I'm not going to fall to something like this!" He shattered several more skeletons but still more kept coming.

"That isn't going to work!" Shion shouted, "the guards are here so that only those who are truly worthy of being Saints are able to get their cloths repaired.

They aren't meant to be defeated, they are only meant to serve as an obstacle. We have to get back to the bridge! They won't leave the graveyard!"

"You go back if you want, go ahead. I'm not going to run from a battle!" Manigoldo shouted, then turned back to the battle to find a skeleton lunging toward him...only to be stopped by an invisible wall.

"Would you listen to me?' Shion half snarled, "these guards are not meant to be defeated. They'll get back up again once you knock them down. We have to leave!"

"Why? Scared I'll knock down more than you?"

"Excuse me?"

"I haven't had a chance to train today. Guess this will make up for it." Manigoldo attacked another group of skeletons grinning.

"You're insane!" Shion snapped as he knocked away several skeletons that had tried to attack him.

"So?" The other boy replied, his manic grin still in place. Not wanting to leave the other boy alone, Shion settled for stopping those that tried to attack him. He wasn't sure how long he had been there when a powerful, familiar Cosmo swept though the area. All the skeletons stopped moving, only making small jerking motions.

"What, may I ask, is going on here?"

"Master!" Shion whirled around going pale, "I'm sorry, I..."

Hakurei cut him off with a head shake.

"You finally done, old man?" Manigoldo asked cheerfully. Shion looked over at the other boy in disbelief as Sage gave a half smile.

"My business here is done for now. Having fun?"

"I guess," Manigoldo shrugged.

Sage chuckled, then turned to his brother.

"So I trust you'll get started immediately?" he asked.

"If that's what you want," Hakurei answered. Sage nodded, then turned back to the two boys.

"It's time to leave, Manigoldo." The Cancer trainee muttered something that might have been 'finally' as he went to join his Master. As Sage began to call upon his Cosmo, Manigoldo suddenly grinned and turned to look behind him.

"Shion!" he yelled, "you need to loosen up!"

An indignant 'Hey!' was all the laughing Manigoldo heard before the teleportation pulled him away.

The End

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