Rina's Notes: Okays. More than half of this chapter was written by my dear brilliant buddy Kimiri. I barely wrote a scene of this so yah. But I set it all up in the middle so that's me. And don't freak out when Saku and the gang appear in the middle of the chapter. They followed the 4 peeps there so ha. This chapter made me cry…Thanks lots Miri-chan!

Kimiri's Notes:

Okay, this will take awhile so sit back and relax…ready? –Takes deep breath – This chapter is brought to you by:

-Jack's Lament by the guy who sang for Jack in Nightmare Before Christmas (I 3 this song!)
-I Won't Say (I'm In Love) by Susan Egan and the Muses
-All I Ask Of You by Patrick Wilson And Emmy Rossum
-Fragrance by Gackt
-Every Heart by BoA
-Con Los Aňos Que Me Quedan by Glorfia Estefan (Viva Gloria! Ella tiene una bonitha voz! Me gusta su música!)
-Mi Buen Amor by Glorfia Estefan

It's also brought to you by these instrumental pieces:

-Where Never Lark Or Eagle Flewby LSHS Symphonic Band
-To Zanarkand
-Feelings That Transcend
-…And Then I Kissed Him

Lastly:

-The Love Theme from Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones

And the end by

-Before Your Love by Kelly Clarkson
-A Moment Like This by Kelly Clarkson
-Some Kind of Miracle by Kelly Clarkson

Rina's Notes: 0.o now if only I had to add to this list. Well my part brought to you by a bunch of Jrock songs. :) yay

On…


Chapter 38: One Fleeting Moment

NPB4ever & Kimiri


"Wow…"

All four teenagers sat and stared at Arilla and Chisato. The whole story obviously shocked them to the point of remaining silent. It was actually Kori that broke the silent with his oh-so-intelligent remark of "wow". The other three teenagers looked at him for a brief moment before turning back to Rika's two cousins.

Natasha blinked. "Tyrin and Saku are…gay with…each other?" Chisato nodded with a big grin on his face. Then, Natasha asked a question no thought of throughout the entire thing. "Are you gay?"

Both Arilla and Chisato gave her a quizzical look before bursting out in laughter. Wiping tears from his eyes Chisato said, "No! Actually I'm not! I just like acting like a gay guy to piss dear ol' Saku off! I'm really actually straight…"

"Yeah," Kori muttered to Kareico. "Straight as a circle."

At this point Kareico let out a snicker and was about to say something when Natasha cut him off, "Kori, don't be mean to him! Can't you see he's royalty! Pay your respects lowly servant!"

She then stood up and glared at him, her arms akimbo. Kori blinked. "Technically so am I if what Chisato says is true…"

It was at that moment that a loud shriek cut Kori off.

"O MY GOD!!!" Rika screamed. "I HAVE GAY COUSINS!! THAT'S SO COOL!!!"

"O.M.G!" Natasha said suddenly. "I just realized that…you do!"

"And you've known them since you were five months old! You got to see them gay!" The younger girl said as she pointed a finger at her best friend. "I am so jealous!"

Kori rolled his eyes and Kareico rose an eyebrow. They watched as the two girls began talking about Natasha's life in Makai before Kori interrupted by saying, "I don't know why you're so excited. You see two gay guys every day of your life…"

"Yeah," Rika said, "You."

"And Kareico." Natasha added causing her best friend to nod in agreement.

"At least I'm not a lesbo!" Kareico shot back instantaneously at the red-eyed brunette 16-year-old girl. Kori intervened before another argument could be started off.

"No," He said, "Vince and Steven."

"Yeah…" Rika agreed. "…I know, but I mean my cousins are…"

"Are what?" asked a newcomer. All eyes turned towards the door to find Tyrin, Teira and Saku standing there looking at Rika curiously. The four teenagers didn't how to react. Kori and Kareico obviously wanted to stay away from them. Natasha blinked several times trying to figure out how they knew her and yet acted like they never did and Rika outright wanted to shout to the world that they were gay. Hey…it was cool. You can't blame a girl for trying to socially ruining her cousin's reputation even though he had none.

She was about to say this out loud, but Natasha cut her off. The older girl sensed that Rika was going to say something and answered for her, "You are superbly spiffy. That's what Ri-chan wanted to say."

The three at the door raised an eyebrow questioningly. Saku then noticed Chisato standing at the doorway. "What are you doing here?"

"Heya Saku -!" Chisato chirped. "Just came here to tell Rika and the others a little history of Juiaku and our families' history."

Saku narrowed his eyes, trying to figure out what he was saying. Tyrin and Teira exchanged glances. The others stayed silent. If Chisato didn't tell Saku why he was here there must've been a good reason. Natasha, however, couldn't hold it in.

"You knew me when I was a baby and you never told me!" She practically yelled at Saku and Tyrin. The two older boys looked at her.

"Well…yeah…" Tyrin began. "We kinda lived on the same street since you were a baby. It's kind of hard not to know you."

"I'm not talking about in the Ningenkai! I'm talking about in Makai!" The younger teenage girl clarified. Realization dawn upon Saku's eyes and then he turned to Chisato to find him grinning like the Cheshire cat. All hell was about to break loose when a sudden scream startled them.

"KAWAII!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

Everyone turned around just in time to see Arilla jump on poor Kareico and tackle him to the ground. He screamed as she did so. "KORI! Help!"

Kori eyed the situation and then shook his head, "Uh…sorry dude, you're on your own."

"RIKA!"

"Shut up Kareico! Rika 'tis thinking!"

"NATASHA!"

"Sorry…no can do. The day I turn into a lesbian is the day I help you!"

"YOU LESBO! Only a lesbian won't help a guy out of this situation!"

Natasha glared as her face flushed. Her hands clenched into fists. She marched over to Kareico and Arilla. She pulled the cheerleader-ish girl off of him. He stood up and was about to say "thank you" when a big fist collided with his jaw. He stumbled back and only had a split second to see Natasha pounce on him.

Everyone blinked, surprised at Natasha's sudden outburst. It was then that Chisato shouted, "I bet twenty bucks Natasha beats him!"

"Chisato! You idiot!" shouted Arilla as she stormed to the two feuding teenagers. She grabbed Natasha. "Get away from him!"

She pulled Natasha to her feet only to find that the fire elemental glaring directly at her, "Stay out of this!"

"No!" Arilla countered. "You fight him, you fight me!"

"What are you? His girlfriend?" Natasha asked incredulously. Arilla gave the girl a big smile that both Rika and Natasha didn't like.

"Nope!" She chirped. "But I will be!"

It was then that something in Natasha snapped. Something about those words just angered her. It angered her so much more than what Kareico could do to get her mad, so much more than her brother annoying her and so much more than Juiaku finishing off her family. Arilla must've sensed it because her annoyingly big grin disappeared.

Natasha didn't hesitate to attack. Much like she had done with Kareico, she punched Arilla straight in the jaw and sent the other girl stumbling backwards. Arilla regain her footing and glare at the girl.

So, it's a fight on who gets to claim him… Arilla thought. …Too bad she doesn't know that. Won't this be interesting…

Sparing no time, the cheerleader look-alike sprung at her opponent. She tackled Natasha to the ground, making the fire fox collided back first onto the ground. Once the two crashed onto the floor, Natasha kneed Arilla on her side and knocked the girl off of her. While this was happening, Chisato suddenly shouted, "CHICK FIGHT!"

Kareico, shaking off the previous attack, watched as Arilla climbed on top of Natasha and started strangling the girl. He tried to get up to stop the two girls, but both Rika and Kori stopped him before he got the chance. Kareico looked at them and said, "What the hell are you doing? They're going to kill each other!"

"I wouldn't be worried about Natasha," Rika began to say, but the older teenage boy cut her off.

"It's not Natasha I'm worried about..." He said. "…It's Arilla!"

"Excuse me!" Rika nearly shouted. "That's my best friend you're talking about!"

"No!" Kareico protested. "I'm worried about Arilla because Natasha way too good of a fighter. Not to mention she's angry! An angry fire elemental, not to mention a good martial artist, is not a good combination! Natasha is gonna kill her! She's mad enough to do it!"

"Then you going in there wouldn't make much sense," Kori pointed out. "You'd practically be committing suicide."

Kareico sighed heavily as the three turned and watch Natasha and Arilla throw various assaults at each other. Natasha had eventually gotten Arilla off her by Karate chopping the sides of the girl's neck. She had gotten off, choking and gasping for air. The fire fox smirked and jumped to her feet.

Arilla glared at her opponent before letting out a battle yell. She went for Natasha's neck again and the fire elemental grabbed her wrists to try and stop her. Pushing her back, Arilla tried getting her opponent's neck. Natasha walked backward trying to keep the pressure off her, but in the process tripped over the bed skirt of the bed. Arilla took advantage of this and pushed Natasha back further. Everyone's eyes widen when they realized where Arilla was pushing the younger girl…

…The window.

Natasha, because she was stumbling and trying to regain her footing, was pushed back into the window. The glass broke as the young 16-year-old crashed through it. Arilla expected to let go so Natasha could fall all on her own, but because of Natasha's tight grip on her wrists, she dragged Arilla with her.

The two girls screamed as they fell out the window. Everyone also jumped and ran to the window. They expected them to be on the ground. They were surprised to see them dangling from the window. They examined the damage quickly. Everyone's throat tighten when they saw a heavy amount of blood coming from Natasha's right hand, and several scraps from her back and left hand.

Kareico froze, not knowing what to do. Something made him freeze and his mind go blank. Tyrin and Saku acted first when they bent down and grabbed Natasha's wrists. While they were lifting her up, Tyrin shouted to her, "Hey kiddo, I need you to pull yourself up."

She nodded and tried to bring herself up, but failed. She tried placing her foot on the wall to life herself up again, but her footing slip and she fell further. Rika squealed out of fear. Kareico snapped out of his own little world and went to the edge of the window and laid flat on his stomach. He managed to grab Natasha by the waist and hoisted her up with the help of Saku and Tyrin.

The two fell back onto the floor, Natasha in Kareico's arms. Chisato, at the same time, also dragged his sister up. As Arilla situated himself again, Natasha examined her right hand and cringed when she found a large piece of glass in it.

"We need to get that fixed." Teira said calmly as she kneeled down and examined Natasha's heavily damaged hand. She turned to Saku and Tyrin. "You two go and help her."

They nodded and helped Natasha's to her feet. Rika then piped up, "I'll go with them."


"Tasha what the hell was that?" Rika whispered to Natasha as Saku and Tyrin fought over which kind of bandage roll to use.

"I…have no idea." Natasha replied, looking down. Rika had asked a perfectly logical question. What was that indeed? She could have sworn she hated Kareico but her mind had absolutely gone berserk when Arilla said that. Which then made her question that feeling that somehow always arose whenever Kareico was around. It was that sudden jolt of electricity when Kareico simply glanced her way…that pure anger and furious annoyment whenever a female tried to touch him. It was weird…

Did she…perhaps, LIKE Kareico?

"No!!!!!" Tyrin whined. "Use this one! It's softer!!!!"

"Ty, that's way too soft! It'll get stuck inside her skin!" Saku argued.

"You two fight like a married couple." Rika snickered boldly. Being the only of the two who got that, Saku blushed and glared at her causing both girls to laugh.

"Rika leave while Ty fixes Natasha up." Saku muttered.

"Nooooo!!!!!!!!!!!!" Rika pouted as she was pushed out the door by Saku. The door finally clicked shut and silence filled the room. Tyrin suddenly turned to Natasha with a big grin on his face.

"Okay! Ready for the awesome Mr. Doctor Ty's amazing healing powers that are cool?" Ty asked sweetly to Natasha as he sat next to her holding up the firmer roll bandage that Saku had handed him.

"Okay, now I'm scared…" Natasha muttered.


"Did you see what I just saw?" Kori asked Kareico once every single person migrated out of his and Kareico's room.

Kareico nodded staring at the broken window. Yes he did see that. He more than saw that. He FELT that.

"Dude I think Natasha's jealous" Kori sang.

"Jealous?" Kareico turned toward his friend. Natasha usually wouldn't have acted like that out of her own volition. Something seriously pissed her off and he liked it. He smirked. "Do you say that's a good or bad thing?" he asked himself more than Kori.

Kori shrugged. "I dunno abut girls these days. Maybe she just doesn't like cheerleaderish type girls. Don't really blame her though."

Kareico nodded not hearing a word his friend was saying. Lately it was like this. Kori would be talking to him about a random subject and his thoughts would trail off…to HER. He used to question himself as to why this was happening but he had grown tired and now knew the answer to all his struggles. He liked Natasha. A lot. No, scratch that, he LOVED Natasha. He had run this over in his head a million times and it made perfect sense.

"But really, I do hate snobby stuck up bitches. Hey Kareico?" Kori asked.

Kareico blinked.

"Man, are you even listening to me?" Kori asked.

"I need to go clear my head." Kareico muttered, standing up. Usually that meant the bar, but this time it meant he needed to go walk around. This topic was definitely worrying him like no Tomorrow. How could he ever talk to Natasha again without keeping his mind in tact? It seemed absolutely impossible. But that's why he needed a walk.


"There!" Tyrin exclaimed happily with a huge grin on his face, "All done!"

Natasha held her hand out arms-length apart and examined the bandaging. It was pretty good. Granted, Tyrin went crazy with the bandaging and after several unsuccessful tries of bandaging Natasha's hand, he finally accomplished it. He was obviously so proud of his success. Natasha merely smiled.

"Thanks." she said. Tyrin shrugged as if to say it was no problem.

She jumped off of from where she was sitting and moved her wrists around in circular motions. Thank God that she didn't have to fight in any tournaments or matches at the moment. Closing her hand was hard enough to do as it is. She remained silent and watched as Tyrin leave and Rika reenter.

"So…" Rika began. "Care to explain what happened back there? Any hint of any sort?" Natasha shrugged and Rika frowned. "Come on, there's got to be something! Why did you go all berserk back there! You were about ready to kill Arilla without any remorse."

The older teenager sighed heavily and looked at her best friend, "Listen, Ri-chan, I have no clue why I acted like that. You should know that when I get angry I'm not me anymore. My body gets sort of…"

"Possessed?" offered Rika.

"Yeah," agreed the fire fox. "I just can't control my actions. My mind is set on one thing alone and at that moment it was hurting Arilla really bad. I had no thoughts of killing her or anything."

Rika stayed silent and then asked a question that she knew potentially ruin a certain relationship, "So…do you like Kareico as in like-like him?"

"Like-like him?" Natasha repeated as she raised an eyebrow. "Isn't that a bit…I dunno…second grade?"

"Oh, whatever!" Rika said as she brushed the subject off, "but seriously, do you?"

"I seriously need to go take a walk!" Natasha blurted as she bolted up and left poor Rika in the dust.


Kori thanked the repairmen that had come and fixed the broken window that both Arilla and Natasha had broken. They arrived about an hour after Kareico disappeared and when they saw the window, they stared at it questioningly. They, after getting over the shock of a broken window, shook their heads and merely muttered something about "angry martial artist teenagers that have nothing better to do than make someone else's life harder". Kori, of course, merely ignored them.


Kareico smiled to himself as he walked back to the small building that contained their hotel room. After a whole hour of thinking and rethinking and rethinking every single detail that crossed his mind, he had finally settled on one point that was indeed the concrete detail he was seeking.

Kareico was absolutely crazy(ly) in love with Natasha. And still after hours she hadn't left his mind a moment of peace. Boy did he need a beer…Suddenly someone ran out of the door and stopped right in front of him. Oh shit…not now!

Natasha paused to stare at Kareico.

"H-Hey…" he greeted his voice shaky.

"Hey…" she replied. A whole moment passed and no words were spoken.

"Um…Natasha…I…" Kareico stopped midway in his sentence. He wasn't trying to say that was he? No! Not yet!

"Yeah? What is it Kareico?" Natasha asked, tilting her head to the side. The teenage ice wolf bit his lip to keep himself from saying what he knew was going to come. The fact that Natasha looked extremely cute at that moment did not help matters much either. Damn…he hated life.

"I…fuck…never mind." Kareico muttered as he walked past Natasha. Natasha blinked and heard a few words just below a whisper.

"I love you."

Her eyes widened. Did she hear that correctly? Did Kareico just say 'I love you?' But wait…he said it so quietly…maybe he didn't mean it? Natasha turned to look at Kareico but he had already went inside.

Oh God…This is so confusing! She walked forward still planning to take a walk…but she had a million other things added to her list of what to think about now. She turned her back away from him and continued down the hallway. She brought her left thumb up to her lips and began nibbling on her nail absentmindedly. She often did this when she was confused.

As she walked down the hall deep in thought, she didn't realize anyone was in front of her before it was too late. She had crashed into the person that was going the opposite direction of her and both tumbled to the ground. Groaning and holding her throbbing head, Natasha looked up to find Saku opposite of her, also holding his head. He looked up and found a very worried Natasha looking back at him.

"I'm sorry." She mumbled nervously. Saku waved his hand in the air as if saying it was no big deal. The young male jumped to his feet and then helped the teenage girl up.

"What brings you here, hm?" Saku asked after an moment of awkward silence. The young fire fox merely shrugged and continued to remain deep in her own thoughts. Saku, however, wasn't about to give up. "Come on, Lil' Asha, tell dear old Uncle Saku what's wrong!"

"Lil' Asha?" Natasha asked with a raised eyebrow.

Saku nodded, "Hey, it could work if you become a famous RnB princess! Like Alicia Keys! I like her…"

Natasha once again nodded nervously and started to back away, "Okay, you're officially scaring me, Saku. But then again, you do that often so I guess that's nothing new…"

"Moving on," Saku suddenly said loudly. "Care to tell me why you crashed into me. Obviously you were so deep in thought you didn't even bother to look. So, obviously that means something is bothering you."

Sighing, the fire fox said, "If I tell you, will you stop calling me Lil' Asha?"

"Of course!" chirped Saku as he patted the seat next to him. Natasha finally sat down and sighed heavily. How was she going to word this without embarrassing Kareico? She didn't want to humiliate the boy by spilling the beans. Then, she didn't want to assume he said what he said and embarrass her in the process.

"Okay…" She said slowly, feeling Saku watching. "Hypothetically speaking, what would you do if you heard a boy mutter under his breath that he loved you."

"Well," Saku began seriously, "Would this girl have feelings for him?"

Natasha looked at Saku distressed, "She doesn't know."

"How long has she known this boy?" Saku questioned. By this time he had an idea of who "she" was and who "he" was. It was sort of obvious, but he played along for the benefit of the doubt. Natasha bit her bottom lip.

"Supposedly since she was a baby," She answered. "But they re-met in the first grade."

Saku nodded. His suspicions were confirmed. So Kareico finally realized what the prophecy told them so long ago. As prophecy stated about the Elementals, the ice wolf would first realize its feelings for the fire fox, followed closely by the earth dog.

The older man contemplated how to help the young teenage girl before him. He had known her for so long and saw both her and Rika as little sisters…much better sisters than a certain pink-haired, obsessive female that he had known as sister for so long. He glanced back at Natasha and noticed that she truly bothered by Kareico's sudden expression for his feelings towards her. He also came to the conclusion that Kareico didn't mean to tell her.

"Well…" He finally spoke up. "The only answer I can give you is talk to him about it. Perhaps through talking maybe you discover what you feel for him."

Natasha nodded, still not happy. Looking up at her guide, she asked, "What did you do when you realized you had feelings for Ty?"

Saku blinked, completely blown out of the water. He had not expected this from her. Furrowing his eyebrows in concentration, he said, "I don't remember. It was so long ago. But what I can remember was that I was scared at first. Probably like how you're feeling."

Once again, the fire fox nodded. Scared was an understatement with how she was feeling. Terrified was more like it. Standing up, she looked at Saku and said, "Thanks, Ku-kun. I think I'll go find Kareico now."

Saku nodded and watched as the young girl left to find the ice wolf. Smiling to himself sadly, he prayed that Natasha and Kareico wouldn't meet the same fate that he and Tyrin met. Juiaku had a certain way with messing up relationships.


Natasha bit her bottom lip as she looked around for Kareico. She had asked for him at his room, but Kori said that he hadn't come back. She checked at the Japanese style gardens and didn't find him there. She even checked the hotel's bar and still didn't find him. That left one only place: the roof.

As she climbed the stairs to the roof she began to think how she would deal with this. She was still in the shock that the boy she had known since she was eight just confessed his feelings for her. Here all this time she was thinking he hated her and then this comes along. It took her completely by surprise.

Shaking her head, she cleared her head of these confusing thoughts and entered the roof. As she had expected, she found Kareico on the roof, his back facing towards her, watching the sun set. She quietly walked up to him, hoping he didn't sense her yet, but it was all in vain when he said, "What are you doing up here? Shouldn't you be downstairs with Rika, resting from your injuries from your fight with Arilla?"

Natasha sighed and bluntly remarked, "Kareico, I heard what you said."

Kareico closed his eyes and cursed underneath his breath. He didn't want her knowing yet. Turning around, he found her looking at him calmly. He half expected her to be looking at him sympathetically. He also expected she came up here to tell him she didn't feel the same way. But the next question she asked blew him away, "How long?"

"Quite awhile." He answered truthfully. "I don't know when it started. I have a feeling it started right after Rika and you were kidnapped by Billy, Bob or whoever those freaks were…"

Natasha nodded, remaining silent. No wonder he had been acting nicer to her lately. She walked passed him and stared at the sun set. She broke the tension again, when she asked, "Does Kori know?"

"I think he suspected, but never asked." Kareico replied once again. For the third time, the two teenagers were consumed by an awkward silence. Natasha didn't know what to say and Kareico was too nervous to speak. He looked down at her and found her ruby eyes staring back up at him.

"I don't know what to say." She whispered, her voice shaking. Kareico nodded. At least that was better than flat out rejection. Natasha noticed that he misinterpreted what she was saying when he began walking away. She suddenly grabbed his arm and he glanced back at her, confused. With tears in her eyes she murmured, "I don't know what to say because there aren't enough words in the world that could describe what I feel for you."

Smiling slightly, Kareico took her hand gently in his and brought her closer to him. He bent down until his face was inches from her. He softly murmured, "Just three words could: I love you."

With that he closed the space between the two. Natasha's heart began to beat faster as she took her hand out of his and slipped them behind his neck. He wrapped his arms around her waist and picked her up so she was his height. Natasha suddenly used her right hand to cradle his face as their small, soft kiss became more passionate.

The wind softly began to play with them as they pulled away. Natasha looked him into his and whispered, "I love you."

Kareico grinned wider and captured her lips in another kiss. With each passing second their kiss became more passionate until the two were playing "tonsil hockey". He put Natasha back down on the ground and began playing with her small hand whilst Natasha ran her free hand through Kareico's hair. One thing was for sure:

The two were on cloud nine.


Rina's Notes: -sniff sniff- that was lovely. Again, that was all Kimiri…now, try reading something I wrote between a guy and a girl…ha! Sorry peeps I only enjoy writing gay guy scenes…speaking of which I need to go update Beautiful Dirt. So ya'll I hope you enjoyed this Chapter.

R&R and make us happy.

Rina

Tonsil hockey goes to Alyssa…she wins a prize. Yup yup. (WTF?!)