“Kibi? Kibi?” Dakki walked around the castle calling her younger sister’s name. “Chuuou-sama, have you seen Kibi?” Dakki asked as she looked around the room once more.
“No.” Chuuou answered. “She probably is in the Sake storage.” He replied and placed his hand on Dakki’s shoulder but Dakki didn’t respond, instead she seemed deep in thought.
“I’m sorry Chuuou-sama but I’m going to go look for her a little more. Please call me when you see her.” With that Dakki exited the room. Usually Dakki didn’t worry much about Kibi’s disappearances. She’d be gone sometimes during the day and be home at night. But it was already the third day since Kibi was missing and the Zhou army was nearing Yin everyday. Although Dakki didn’t doubt Kibi’s strength she was worried on whether Kibi had gotten caught by Taikobo. Dakki didn’t the least underestimate Taikobo, after all he not only took Oukijin hostage but also defeated Chokoumei and most of all Bunchuu. Although he wasn’t with the army at this exact moment, it was still dangerous for Kibi to wander too close.
“Kibi….” Dakki muttered her precious sister’s name once more and looked at the setting sun sadly.
Kibi stood in the plains wrapped in a rugged blanket with few strands of her long hair escaping. Her pink eyes were covered by the way she wore the blanket. The plain she was in was just a few miles away from the resting place of the Zhou army and if she paid close attention Kibi could hear the sounds of a party.
Carefully Kibi took out a small crystal orb that was the shade of a deep marine blue. It slowly levitated out of her hand and glowed softly. It wasn’t a Paopei, but it was special none the less. It was an energy orb that mixed together her Senki with another. Kibi fought the tears as the image of the little boy with unsorted blue hair and lilac eyes, with two sheep like horns, smiling innocently and trustingly up at her. Kibi slowly brought the orb towards her mouth and kissed it lightly.
“I’m sorry…I’m sorry…..” Kibi apologized. For the past two hundred years Kibi had nightmares of that little boy crying and yelling at her. “I’m sorry.” Kibi cried unable to hold the tears back.
“Who is it?!” A sharp voice called at that moment.
It had been a week since Zhou had set out again and they hadn’t encountered any problems so far. Youzen believed they won’t encounter any more huge problems until they reached the Menchi castle. It was a while, most likely a good three months until they would reach the Menchi castle and at least that long until the commander returned.
But in the mean while Zhou still had it’s signature light heartiness and under the suggestion of the King, a party of celebrating setting out had been going on. Youzen sighed as he looked around the party. It was helpful because it lifted the spirits of not only the soldiers but the Doushi and Senninn that had lost their place to stay and were currently staying with the army. However Youzen wasn’t enjoying himself.
He always had preferred a quiet evening to a noisy party and enjoyed it when he could actually hear his own thoughts. He did understand that Hatsu had planned this party so that people could forget about their loss and worries at least for one night and Youzen understood that, he really did. But, he believed that Hatsu didn’t have to use his power to make it mandatory.
In other words, Youzen was at the party against his wishes.
“Hey Youzen why the blue face!? Drink! Drink!!” Igo put his arm around Youzen and tried to drag him into the center of the party.
“Igo-kun, would you let go?!” Youzen demanded as he tried to break free of the Doushi.
“What?! You can’t drink my Sake?” Igo glared at Youzen and Youzen turned around.
“You’re drunk.” Youzen stated bluntly not able to withstand the nausiness the smell of alcohol brought him.
“Heh! That’s what parties are for!” Igo declared and Youzen sighed. “Come on, why don’t you drink!?” Igo shoved the bottle of Sake to Youzen. Youzen tried to refuse but Igo refused to give up.
“Hey, Buou come ‘er!” He called and the young king came running.
“Hey what’s up!?” Hatsu asked as he drank another bottle of Sake.
“Ou-sama stop drinking! You’re the king! You’re suppose to set examples!!” Tenka yelled coming up behind him.
“Ah? What are you sayin’? Dad drank too…. hic.” Hatsu replied.
“Another drunk….” Youzen muttered. “Tenka-kun, do you know a way to escape?” Youzen asked as he tried punching Igo senseless but it didn’t work.
“At least you can punch Igo, I can’t punch this king.” Tenka sighed and glared up at Hatsu.
“Hic, what Tenka?” Hatsu asked and Tenka sighed again. “Hey Youzen why not you drink?” Hatsu offered.
“I’ve been trying to make him!” Igo added and so Igo and Hatsu formed a team to try and make Youzen drink.
“I don’t like Sake.” Youzen stated bluntly. It was true, he had never developed a liking for the alcohol that so many people around him enjoyed. He also had a low tolerance and only a few cups of sake could easily make him drunk. And he absolutely refused to show his weak state in front of so many people.
“Ou-sama, stop!” Tenka ordered but the young king ignored him. Youzen was quickly getting fed up with the king and Igo.
“Hey Youzen, why not turn into a woman and please me?” Hatsu suggested, granted he was drunk and not thinking straight but that was the end of Youzen’s patience.
With one swift move of his hand he summoned Koutenken and unleashed the gigantic dog against the young king and the young doushi that had stepped over the line. Koutenken didn’t need any verbal orders to do what his master wished. He quickly took Hatsu to Tann and Igo to Doukou Tenson. Soon after Youzen and Tenka heard the sound of Harisen and Doukou Tenson yelling.
Youzen, now satisfied, smiled.
“….Well, that takes care of me trying to guard a drunk king.” Tenka whispered. “I’m going to go check out Tenshou. I don’t trust him to stay sober around here. Especially since he’s at the age where he wants to try everything.”
“Good luck.” Youzen gave him. “I’m going to escape awhile. If anyone needs me, just get Koutenken to come and pick me up.” With that Youzen quickly walked through the flaps of the party tent and Tenka went around looking for his younger brother.
Youzen had walked away from the camp, intending on just enjoying the peace and quiet while he mourned the death of his parents. It was then that he came across someone who was standing in the field.
Kibi turned her head around slowly and wanted to run when she saw the beautiful face. Yet at the same time she wanted to go hug the man that stood in front of her.
Last time she saw him he was only a toddler. Now, he was a man. Kibi felt pride and sadness build up in her.
“…..Kibi!” His face changed into that of a guarded one when he recognized her Senki and Kibi felt like crying. Those eyes that showed suspicion, how different they were from the eyes full of love and trust that she remembered.
“What are you doing here?” Summoning his trident and placing it in both of his hands ready for a battle he demanded. Kibi’s eyes saddened even more at the harshness of his voice.
“I asked you a question.”
“……I came with no intention of fighting..” Kibi informed him as she put away the orb. “I just wanted to get away from Chouka…” from the insanity Kibi thought to herself. Kibi adored Dakki and loved her as a sister but the insanity of Chouka was too much for Kibi. Although Kibi maintained a facade of a young girl, inside she had deeper thoughts going on.
However she couldn’t let Youzen know that. The distrust of a servant could be the ultimate downfall for the master, and Kibi wanted to protect Dakki. “Please….lower your weapon.” Most of all, she didn’t want to fight Youzen. Kibi knew he wouldn’t remember her, he was too young to remember. I wanted to help raise you…..there was so much I wanted to teach you…
The gifted young son of Tsuuten Kyoushu and Dakki. Before Dakki left Kingou Kibi had taken care of him. Kibi knew that she would only take care of Youzen for a short while but she still couldn’t help but love the young boy. The day before Kibi left Kingou she had held Youzen in her arms and cried the whole entire night. That was when she created the crystal orb, so that she could always remember the little boy.
Kibi knew Dakki loved Youzen….yet Dakki had chosen the path that would hurt Youzen the most. And Kibi had chosen to follow Dakki. Kibi knew she had no right to worry or even care about him but she did.
“And I am suppose to believe you?” Youzen asked as his face turned into a smirk and Kibi felt a bolt of pain run through her. “Anyone who can use Henge is skilled in acting. It would be easy for you to act.” Kibi lowered her eyes at those words, not able to look at him straight in the eyes.
“After all, you acted when I first knew you.”
“No!!!” Kibi was yelling when she noticed. “I wasn’t acting….I really did think of you as a younger brother!!!” The lilac eyes that shone with love and trust, Kibi had thought of those eyes when she felt like losing. She had not exchanged those eyes for the suspicion and anger for nothing. “I wanted so much to teach you more.”
“Then why did you leave?” Youzen snapped. The anger didn’t escape his voice. It was all Kibi needed to know that he hated her for leaving.
“I gave my life to Dakki Neesama. I can’t betray her.” Kibi declared. “She really does love you”
“I don’t want to hear it!” Youzen interrupted her. “Do you know what it feels like to know that your own mother caused a war? That she could kill defenseless people with out regret? Do you know how sick that makes me? Do you!?” Youzen screamed.
“Youzen….she has feelings too. She’s not as cold as you think.” Kibi placed her hands in front of her as if she were praying. “She feels just like anyone else.”
“A woman that abandons her son and allows him to see both of his fathers die has feelings?” Youzen asked again as he glared at her. “Kibi…you ask me to believe that?”
“…….She does….I do. Both of us really care for you. Neither one of us wanted to let go of you……so much we wanted to teach…” The hood slid off of Kibi’s head and her eyes were closed as tears overflowed. “Please…..we care for you….” Her voice was barely audible as she said that.
Youzen looked at her. He wanted so much to kill her. Not only was she Zhou’s enemy she was also a cause for his suffering. When he was a child and when he had seen his fathers die. She didn’t understand, if she did she would have come and taken him, not abandon him where he was not wanted. Gyokutei had loved him as a son but Youzen had never had a friend he could trust and confide to. He always felt lonely. The person that took the shape of a young girl who cried in front of him had played a factor in that. Youzen, as a young child, had loved and trusted Kibi as he had his father and mother. But all of them betrayed him, he hated them for that.
Did he really though? He wished to mourn his biological father’s death and Youzen certainly felt an empty void inside him when his biological father died. When he saw Dakki as an enemy Youzen couldn’t deny that he wanted her to stay safe. No matter what he said or did, those two people were his parents and Youzen didn’t want to see them die.
Yet, they were his enemies at the same time. When Youzen bowed down to Taikobo he knew that he would at least have to see his own mother die, and yet he still bowed down to Taikobo. When Youzen did that, he betrayed his biological family, and Kibi was part of that. He had to kill Kibi sooner or later.
Kibi lowered her hands and spread them out as she closed her eyes. The tears were still falling but other than that she seemed tranquil. As if she was accepting death.
‘Youzen….Youzen…..Xiao nann’ an image of Kibi smiling at him when he was younger crossed through Youzen’s mind.
Youzen slowly lowered his weapon as he looked away from her. “I won’t kill you now.” Was all he said as he turned around, back towards the resting camp of Zhou. “However when I next see you….”
“Youzen!! Everything is Tenmei(Mandate of Heaven) no one can control it!! I can only wish that someday you would understand!!” Kibi’s cry pierced through the field. Youzen stopped in his tracks. “Youzen….please…..understand…”
“Never.” Youzen declared in a clear voice. “If I do then I would betray Shishou and Chichiue. I would never understand.” Youzen didn’t look back as he started walking again. Kibi fell down and wailed, the crystal orb fell out of her hand and shattered. The fragments slowly dissolved into the air.
Not even a year later, the Yin Dynasty reached an end. Dakki, Kibi, and Oukijin died along with it and Hatsu, known in history as King Wu, was placed in the new throne. It is unclear of what happened to Youzen after the Houshin Project ended. Some say he became a Senninn, some say he disappeared. Along with him though, the truth of who his mother was also died.