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The Roses of Pain

Chapter 5: White Poem

      "Marilyn Manson!?" Toshi choked, almost laughing. "And I suppose Michael Jackson is the dragon of… whatever!"
      Raven shrugged. "Believe what you will. Hide and Yoshiki will go to him for help. When they leave the house, Yoshiki will be vulnerable. And since Hide obviously hasn't found his powers yet, we still have the advantage. You can kill him easily."
      Toshi sat a moment. He wasn't sure why exactly he would want to kill Yoshiki. Perhaps to blame him for the unhappiness Toshi had felt for the past 6 years. "Who are the others?"
      "The dragons of Water and Death are presently living in Japan. The Dragon of Water is the man who owns the band Malice Mizer… Mana. The other is Sugizo of Luna Sea."
      Toshi sputtered and leaned back in his seat, watching as the limo pulled into view of Yoshiki's house. "This is ridiculous. I don't believe you."
      "You will in time," Raven smiled.

      Hide rushed to the front door, Yoshiki following slowly behind. "Where are we going."
      "To see Marilyn."
      "Ah… of course," Yoshiki frowned, watching Hide hop about trying to put his shoes on. "Who's Marilyn?"
      "Marilyn Manson… he knows more about the o-cult and wicca than I do."
      "We're going WHERE?" Yoshiki almost laughed, slipping into his shoes.
      "No time to explain. Get that fancy car of yours fired up and let's go!"

      Toshi blinked a few times and watched the black Ferrari pull out from Yoshiki's garage and take off down the road.
      "See, I told you," Raven said. "Follow them," he ordered to the limo driver.
      Toshi watched the limo pull away slowly from the curb and follow the Ferrari.

      Twiggy Ramirez emerged from the kitchen wearing an ugly, brown sundress and wielding a bowl of popcorn. He sauntered across the living room and set the bowl on the glass table. "What we watchin' tonight, Lyn?"
      Marilyn Manson frowned at the use of his nickname and removed his feet from the coffee table. "Pet Cemetary is on Showtime… and there's some chick-flick on HBO."
      "Ooh.. let's watch HBO!" Twiggy flitted about. "Grief, crappy night on the 'tube." He was about to begin another string of wit when the front doorbell rang. "Who in the hell?"
      He got up and sauntered across the living room to the front door, flinging it open. He was met by a tall man in a suit. "Hi. Who the hell are you?" Well, he was blunt.
      The man in the suit sighed. "Um, I don't know how to explain it. My name is Yoshiki…"
      Across the room, Marilyn sat straight up and looked quickly to the door, one orange eye and one brown eye. "I know that name…"
      Twiggy frowned and looked Yoshiki over. "That's nice. Hey pal, it's nearly 11 o'clock at night. Get lost."
      "No… you don't understand…"
      "Look! I said get lost, pal!"
      Marilyn appeared behind Twiggy, pushing his roommate aside. "What did you say your name was?" He gave Yoshiki a stern look-over.
      "Yoshiki. Hayashi Yoshiki, I'm … a friend of Hide's," he bowed slightly.
      Marilyn frowned and looked the stranger over again. "I've only heard stories of you from the little Spider," Marilyn frowned, demonstrating Hide's short height with his hand. "Why don't you come in a moment…"
      "I have company."
      "Who?"
      Yoshiki stepped aside and ushered Hide around into the light. "This will take some explaining."

      "I can't do this," Toshi whispered, watching Yoshiki and Hide disappear into the house. "I need help."
      "Then we'll go to Japan and recruit Sugizo and Mana before Yoshiki and Hide can get to them."
      "This still is confusing… Sugizo was friends with Hide… and no one knows where Mana's gone off to after the break up of his band. How is this all going to work out for me?"
      "Friendship or no… you need them both on your side. You can convince them… you have to tell them what Yoshiki's doing."
      "That's just it! I don't KNOW what Yoshiki's doing! I don't know why I fear him and loathe him so much all of a sudden."
      "Each Dragon has a hold on the fabric of space-time. Yoshiki just happens to hold power over the Nexus, a type of interplanetary Utopia. He controls space itself, and how things act in space. If he so wished, he could break down the atmosphere of the Earth and expose us all to dead space. If he does that, he could wipe out the entire human race in a mater of minutes."
      "And exactly WHY would Yoshiki do a stupid thing like that? It would kill him too."
      "Not necessarily. His powers of air could trap enough of the Earth's atmosphere in the Nexus to keep himself and whoever else alive for millennia. He would kill the Earth out of spite… he would kill for love."
      Toshi's eyes widened and he looked back at the house. "Hide…"

      Marilyn was very pale, his orange hair seeming to burn atop his head as he watched his pink-haired friend finish his tale and sit quietly on the reclining chair beside him. Twiggy was mumbling to himself in the corner of the couch, surfing through channels on the TV. "This is a bad dream... a VERY bad dream."
      Marilyn chewed on an orange nail, blinking eyes that were colored one orange one brown. "I don't … ah shit…" he sighed, watching Hide a moment. "I don't understand."
      "It's Toshi…" Yoshiki spoke up. "He's trying to kill us for some reason… and we don't know why. We need your help."
      Marilyn stood up and paced about his living room for a few minutes. "What you're saying sounds like something out of a bad horror movie. People flying through the air, strange powers, people coming back from the dead," he cornered Hide with a look. "Frankly, I don't believe a damned word of it. And I suggest the two of you get the hell out of this house."
      "But it's all true," Hide spoke silently, now sitting Indian style in the middle of the living room. "And I understand it more now. I didn't come back because Yoshiki wanted me alive again… I came back to protect Yoshiki."
      Hide slowly rose to his feet, a cool wind striking up through he house. It ruffled through his hair lightly, and as it twirled, black feathers meandered through the air. Hide began to change, folding his arms before him as it seemed his back was trying to explode with another being.
      "What in fucks name is happening to him!" Twiggy panicked, jumping up from the recliner, meaning to fend hide off with the TV remote.
      In a flurry of wind and black feathers, Hide seemed to explode where he stood, a great shadow seeming to envelope him. Everyone covered their faces as the black feathers swirled through the living room… everyone except Yoshiki.
      The shadows seemed to grow and fill the room, plunging everything into an inky blackness pierced only by a street lamp outside the window. Yoshiki felt blind as the shadows seemed to lay a heavy humidity to the air around him. "… Hide…" he whispered, feeling the feather-laced wind begin to die down. "Where are you…"
      Something brushed by his cheek, startling Yoshiki. A pair of arms wrapped around him… and warm lips met his. For a brief moment, Yoshiki stood stone still, his body not daring to move. The muscles in his jaw loosened and he felt the lips kissing him deeply and passionately. Yoshiki's arms seemed to move themselves, raising up to wrap around the figure before him. He returned the kiss, deepening it momentarily before drawing back. "Who are you?"
      "Yoshiki…" the voice whispered to him. "Ai shiteru."
      "Who are you?" he whispered back, raising a hand to feel the face before him. "Hide?"
      A soft chuckle floated through the air and Yoshiki felt as if he was being wrapped in a soft blanket of feathers. "Hide, is that you?"
      "Yes."
      A head rested on Yoshiki's chest and sighed. "I realize now… I'm here to protect you…"
      The dark began to fade slowly, the lights from the television and table lamps beginning to shine back into existence.
      Marilyn and Twiggy each picked themselves off the floor in unison, dusting the black feathers from their clothing. They seemed to notice the oddity that filled their living room at the same time. Yoshiki and Hide stood hugging each other… but from Hide's back sprouted a pair of enormous black wings that stretched out to wrap themselves about he and Yoshiki. The blackness and shadows seemed to be retreating to safety behind Hide's black wings, retreating from the living room to allow the normal light to shine through.
      Moments passed as Yoshiki and Hide stood silently together. The room fell silent and returned to it's normal state.
      Marilyn cleared his throat and rounded around Yoshiki until he could see Hide looking at him. "It's time we all did some serious talking."

      Raven and Toshi watched as the light began to grow back into the house after darkness had all but completely devoured it. "Toshi…" Raven spoke quietly.
      "Get me a plane ticket to Japan ASAP."

© 1999 HTMS Interlink and Jiminy Cricket Ppesses

On to Chapter 6