A/N: I got some inspiration. Backstory for Nancy!

I had to rewrite so many times. Urgh. WHY DID I CREATE SUCH A COMPLICATED PAST FOR MY FICTIONAL SELF?

ALSO! The last two scenes here take place later on in the series. Much later. I tried not to reveal too much, but I really liked them so blah. Spoilers...? I dunno.

Summary: Four times Nancy restrained herself, and the one time she didn't.


A Rose's Thorns

Written on Nov. 27. 2011 - Finished on Nov. 30. 2011


1.

She sat in a corner of the nursery, reading one of the many books she was given. Two servants, Chihiro and Tsugumi, were to watch over her and they were gossiping in another corner, thinking their voices were low and quiet.

They weren't.

She could hear everything they were saying, although she tried to not show it. Eavesdropping was not a fitting skill for the Favored Descendant of the Goddesses because it was considered rude, but she knew that it was a useful skill to have nonetheless.

The servants were talking about the banquet tomorrow where the important people in all the Five Houses of Nobility would come together. They expressed their dislike on having them come onto the Tanaka estate, especially the Yao clan because they were the lords of the Underground and having them on their holy grounds meant they were tainting it.

Something in her snapped. The Yao clan meant Wei who was going to be the future Head one day, and he was nice unlike his father and he listened to her and made her laugh.

She narrowed her eyes at them, and they shivered at the sudden breeze. A split second later, they found themselves encased in ice.

Fifteen minutes later, Nami, Ashi, and Riku came into the room, having sensed the magic she used. The Light Tamer hurried to her, asking if she was alright. She nodded, eyes still on the frozen statues. Riku was shaking his head because encasing people she found annoying was not a good habit to make. Ashi was amused as he always was and he knocked on the ice encasing the servants.

They all watched as broken ice shards fell to the floor, Chihiro and Tsugumi shivering with lips and skin blue from the cold.

Riku quickly summoned some blankets to warm them up with while Ashi laughed like the weirdo he was. Nami shook her head and scolded her, telling her that she shouldn't keep freezing people in ice just because they did something she didn't like. She nodded absentmindedly, feeling that they were merely lucky she didn't do worse to them. After all, they insulted her best friend.

.

2.

She wanted to scream. Yell. Hit something.

But she had done enough damage for one day.

The blood. Oh god, the blood. And the bodies. Heads blown off, no way to identify them unless they carried ID. But some were children and it would take magic to figure out who their parents were.

Of course, she was spotless. One of the joys of being able to move faster than blood could splatter on her. Or rather, him. Because she didn't do this.

Except it was her fault that he got out again.

She let out a choked sound and the arms wrapped around her tightened. "Ha..."

"Shhh," he said to her, placing a firm kiss on her forehead. "All that matters now is you feeling better."

She whimpered and wanted to cry till her eyes were dry but she merely sniffed and held the tears in. There were clan members running around, doing damage control and making sure no one came onto the scene. Even though her face was hidden from their view, she still technically had a reputation as the Ice Princess so she refused to cry.

Not until she was safe in her own room with him and Wei.

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3.

She should move but she didn't.

The blade entered her chest. She coughed, blood trickling out of her mouth as her right lung was pierced. He wore an arrogant smirk on his lips and it made her chuckle under her breath.

No, this wasn't over just yet.

She refused to let him be the one who could brag about killing her.

He was too bigheaded, too stupid, too slow.

The only reason he even managed to injure her was because she was letting him. If she had decided to be serious, he would have been dead a minute in the fight.

He seemed to be gloating now, and that made her want to laugh.

He forgot an important detail about her.

Idiot.

She was the Elemental Tamer.

The manipulator of the ten elements.

And they were in a forest.

He didn't even notice that she had her hand to the ground.

If he had, he would have expected the vines that suddenly rose from the dirt and wrapped around his body.

If he had, he wouldn't have been pierced by the sharp thorns that adorned the vines.

If he had, he wouldn't be screaming in pain as he bled.

But he didn't.

So she straightened up, holding her wound and staring at the corpse almost blankly. She sighed.

So close.

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4.

Being with him again was...weird. Although they were childhood friends and had to see each other twice a year due to their duties as the Head of their clans, she always went out of her way to avoid him. He brought back memories, but the bad often outweigh the good. She missed him, though, but their bond had already diminished to the point where they might as well be strangers. Every time they talked, their words were formal and careful. Even if that...incident hadn't happened, there were politics involved as well, what with the Tanaka clan hating the Yao clan and visa versa.

He had respected her unspoken wishes and kept his distance as well, which was why his invitation to dinner surprised her. She'd accepted and that was why they were currently at one of the most expensivewhich meant fancy, which meant having to dress up nicely, which meant her business suitrestaurants in the city with a private room to themselves.

The waiter took their ordera middle-well steak for her, and a seafood pasta for himand bowed to both of them before walking out, leaving behind a semi-awkward silence.

She cleared her throat. "You would order seafood."

He blinked, confusion in his eyes, before realising the hidden message. "Ah, I cannot help it if I enjoy seafood, Kouyou."

"You merely do not want me to steal your food like I used to."

"I am sure you are just analyzing my food choice too deeply," he said, a twinkle in his eyes. "It is mere coincidence that I ordered something you cannot eat. After all, what sort of a Chinese man would I be if I do not indulge in delicious seafood whenever I can?"

"A bad one," she relented. "However, as a Japanese woman, I feel cheated."

He laughed. It made her smile. He noticed and smiled back. "Well, I am sure you will get over not eating seafood soon."

"It has been years already, in case you have forgotten. Also, you do not have to be so formal with me, WeiQi."

"I am merely following your example, Kouyou."

"...you always have a retort for everything, don't you."

"It's a gift."

"I hear a contraction, Wei. You are slowly learning."

He was silent for a few seconds. When he spoke, it was soft and in the tone of a bewildered yet hopeful child. "You called me 'Wei'. You haven't called me that since..." He trailed off because he knew that speaking of that incident was forbidden between them, especially after it had killed their friendship.

She played with the napkin ring, not looking at him. "Well, maybe I'm finally moving on?"

He didn't speak again and so she didn't either. The food came twenty minutes later and they ate in a silence that should be uncomfortable and awkward, yet it was not. He paid for dinner and she didn't argue otherwise, because she was well aware of his gentlemanly ways. He took her back home in his car and once they arrived, she sat there, wondering what to say. He was looking at her with the expression he always gave her, the expression she tended to pretend to not notice because it meant acknowledging that he

"Goodnight, Kouyou," he said, smiling. She glanced at the floor, feeling she should say something in return that wasn't going to be the expected 'goodnight' but her mindnormally so witty and quickwas quiet tonight. She looked back up and found something stuck in her throat once they locked eyes and she suddenly felt like leaning forward and

"Goodnight, Wei," she ended up saying quickly before exiting the car. She took a deep breath and walked to her door, pulling her keys out and trying to forget what she had almost wanted to do. It was a good thing she knew restraint.

.

And the one time she didn't

.

Too many demons. They were surrounded on all sides, and they were separated from the others.

There was only one thing to do.

To use all the elements.

In one battle.

She had never done it before, because if she did it, she would deplete her reine to the point of near death.

But that was what she wanted, wasn't it?

Ever since he died...

She had been searching for a way to die without causing Destiny suspicion, especially after she made her promise to never take her own life.

But, if she were to do it protecting Kyle and David...

That was acceptable, wasn't it?

To die protecting her friends...

But what about

Silencing that thought, she took a deep breath and released the restraints she always had on her powers, the restraints she purposely placed on herself to be weaker.

Her aura exploded, the sheer power already obliterating some of the weaker demons that were near. Kyle and David staggered under the weight of her reine and they were looking at her in surprise. She gave them a glance of acknowledgement before encasing them in the strongest shield she could make, saying a quick prayer in her head for the Goddesses to protect them from her power.

The demons were all frozen, whether by fear or from her reine it was hard to tell. But it didn't matter because they were all going to be dead soon anyway.

She summoned the elements, starting with her favourite. A gust of frozen air swept over them and the weaker ones found themselves immediately encased in ice.

A split second of silence.

A roar and the swarm attacked.

She smiled almost brokenly.

It was time for her to go.

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END

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