I wasn't strong enough to stay with them. The injuries and shock made the effects of the holy water stronger than before. I was slipping away, and even though I fought it, holding onto Jay's hand as tight as I could, my grip was weakening. It was too cruel. I'd finally found a place I wanted to stay, where I didn't have to run or fight my past, where I was happy. Now because of Lee I was loosing them all. I fought hard to stay calm, to make it easier. I had hurt Jay enough. Looking around the room, all I could see was solemn and sorrowing faces. Cheshire had his arm around Aria, who was being strong. I met her eyes calmly, knowing that Cheshire and Sylvester would take care of her. I saw Sylvester, and he looked distraught, standing by Aria. I wanted to stay with these people. Even Kyoshiro, who was standing near to Harmony at the back of the room, had a tear on his cheek. I fought back the tears, not just from the pain, but from the fact I was leaving all these people who seemed to really care.
I opened my mouth to speak, but found I couldn't.
I love you Jay. I projected to him Be happy.
He nodded, seeming not to notice the tears on his cheek. For the second time today, things went black.
I opened my eyes to bright sunlight. I was in a room in the Mansion. Jay was standing by my bed, holding Kyshiro's sword. Harmony was in the doorway, staring at me, white-faced, tears coursing down her face.
I felt like I had just recovered from a bad fever. Fragile and strong at the same time. I sat up and looked at Jay, who was still staring in shock.
"Jay?" I asked, shakily. The last thing I remembered was blacking out from holy water. "Jay, what is it? Why do you have Kyoshiro's sword? Where is he?"
Harmony let out a sob, answering for me. I looked down, seeing a pile of ash-like dust on the floor. I looked sharply at her.
"Did he do this? Did Kyoshiro...?" I couldn't finish, horror constricting my throat.
She nodded, crying. I looked at Jay, who didn't seem to be able to move. I felt it like a blow. Kyoshiro was dead because of me. Somewhere, I knew he had more than healed me, he had cured me too. I would never be affected by holy water again.
I got out of the bed, careful not to disturb the dust, and picked up a china vase set on the dresser. With some help from Harmony, who was crying badly, we put the dust in there. I couldn't think straight. Why had he saved me? He was so much more valuable than I was. I realised he was like a leader to us aswell, and we needed his quiet wisdom, even if he was a bit arrogant sometimes. When it was all done, I left the room abruptly. I knew they had a ceremony for Kyoshiro, but I couldn't face it. If no one else blamed me, I blamed myself for his death, and I wanted to be alone for a while. I watched from my balcony as they all gathered in the grounds.
It's not fair. All happiness has a cost. All I brought here was Hunters and death.
When night fell and everyone had gone to bed, no one coming to see me, I slipped out and went to where they had held the ceremony. I sprang lightly into a tree and sat there, one foot dangling down. I was dressed all in black, as I used to do. I felt a weight of guilt and sadness in my chest, as I thought of Kyoshiro and the past couple of days. All the fighting had been for nothing since the past still came and tore everything apart for me. I felt tears run down my face as I leaned back against the trunk of the tree. It was a full moon. I closed my eyes. I should be celebrating being alive with Jay, but I could only feel the loss of Kyoshiro weighing on my mind. I heard someone coming. I wiped my tears away, and moved into the shadows. I wasn't sure I was welcome among them anymore.