I was glad there was a lull in conversation. It gave me an excuse to get away for a couple of minutes.
There's something I have to do, I won't be long. I told Jay, and left the room. I noticed a couple of people look up but no one tried to stop me. We were all deep in our own thoughts I think. I went out to my balcony.
Kyoshiro? If you can hear me, could I talk to you please? I projected out, hoping that he could hear. I knew no one else would. It was like a radio, with each person having their own frequency. If he couldn't hear it, no one would.
"Asha?" Kyoshiro appeared behind me, brighter than he had been in life.
I tried to smile but guilt twisted inside me.
"I died. I know what you did. You used the sword to take my injuries into yourself, and healed me. But you killed yourself in the process. Why did you save me? You could have been happy here, I saw you and Harmony earlier. She loves you, and I think you love her. Why did you not let yourself have that? Why die for me? I..I'm not worth that" I finished very quietly. I felt the guilt and mixed up emotions constricting my airways.
"Asha," he said, more gentle than I had ever heard him talk "I won't explain my reasons, save that you are loved here. Jay needs you. Sylvester needs you as a friend. Aria needs you here. Harmony is going to need you. These people are depending on you to be strong. Maybe the Shadow can be used for good now. Use the Shadow now to defend the people you love here. The Hunters are going to be back now thy know you are here. And Lee is not dead. I'm sorry about that. Your knife did a lot of damage but he survived, just. He will be leading them again. Be prepared for it. Be strong, but more than anything, be happy. I chose to save you. This is my gift to you. Use it well."
I bowed my head, nodding at the same time. I looked up again, facing Kyoshiro with the strength I knew I would have to maintain now, for everyone.
"Thank you Kyoshiro. Thank you for everything."
Kyoshiro didn't reply, instead fading away from my sight. I returned to the others, feeling lighter and stronger than I had done since I had arrived at Vampire Mansion. When I sat down, Jay linked his hand with mine. Everyone was talking quietly. Breaking through the murmur, a melody swelled and broke over us. Kyoshiro appeared, shining, and Harmony joined her voice with his. The notes were soothing and peaceful. When the echoes faded, I stood, clapping. The others joined me. The glow that surrounded Kyoshiro grew brighter, swallowing him. When it faded, he was gone.
The silence that was left behind him echoed. Harmony suddenly broke into heartbreaking sobs, and ran off. After a moment, I ran after her. She had collapsed on her balcony. I went over to her, and put my arms around her.
"Its okay." I said quietly to her. "Its going to be okay. You're not alone" I repeated it over and over, holding her as she cried. I remembered loosing my fiance, and going through this alone. Harmony was not going to be alone. I could hear someone in the doorway. I waited for them to speak.