Legacy’s Tale
Chapter 18
 
 
Morning comes as the sun slowly let’s its warm rays wash across the face of the earth, Dew drops hangs precariously on the tips of leaves and birds singings songs of marked territories and where to find food fills the air. A bird dives downwards and tears a grasshopper away from its perch on a blade of grass. Food for its growing nestling. 
  

All this Ryu paid no attention to. All he cares about is the woman he held in his arms. All he knows is that she is real and alive. Not some illusion that fades away like the mist. Gently he fingered a lock of hair, the soft silkiness brought back memories. He missed her and missed her greatly. 

While she sleeps, he kept watch, now and then distracted by the beauty dozing in his arms. He watches her rouse from sleep and kisses her the moment her eyes open. She smiled back him, a hand lingering on his face. She looks please and that is a good sign. 
  

“When do we go back.” Ryu asked, his eyes never leaving hers 
“Soon.” ChunLi wrapped her arms around his neck 
“And him?’ 
“You will get to meet him.” 
“Good.” Ryu’s fist clenched and unclenches as his eyes narrow. 
“Jealous?” she planted another shower of kisses on his cheek. 
“He’s not worth it.” He mumbled. 
“I’ll be the judge of that. Dear one. And shave.” She patted his face 
“Hmmpf!” he watches ChunLi get up. Using the hot spring to freshen up. 
  

“The others would be worried by now.” Ryu said quietly they got dressed by the spring moments later.. 
“The others.” ChunLi was slightly puzzled but didn’t show it on her face. She realized that she had forgotten something. It wasn’t in her memory so she tried to scan what Ryu meant from his memory. Her eyes narrowed when she had the information she needs. 

“Things could get complicated.” ChunLi mumbled, brushing the dirt off her clothes, once again she was wearing the dark blue shirt and tights under a dark blue wide cuff silk dress coat with ankle length gathered skirts (think Vice and Mature). Tianzai was carefully concealed. 

“But that is half the challenge yes?” ChunLi asked as her hand lingered on Ryu’s face. 
“Much so.” Ryu said as he scoops ChunLi into hi arms. There wasn’t much of an expression in his face. 
“Let us go then.” ChunLi said, resting her head on Ryu chest as he started walking back to the abandon temple. 
  

---- 
  

“He’s gone again!” Shizumaru exclaimed, resting his umbrella on his shoulders. 
“Should have watch him.” Haohmaru got up, taking another sip of wine. 
“This is starting to become a habit for him.” Zannah frowned. 
“What can we do? Complain? Protest? Go on a strike?” Kyo smirked 
The other three members of the Inner Circle looked at Kyo as if he had the answers along. 
“Yes. And that would achieve what?” Zannah shook her head. 

The others follow. Ryu has become trouble than he’s worth these few days and there was nothing they could do. They know that he was worried for ChunLi. But it won’t do him any good to run straight into the claws of a succubus the moment a voice like ChunLi’s call out to him. 

They were barely out the front gates of the temple when they saw someone coming up the path towards them. Someone is carrying someone else. 
  

“Look who I’ve found!!” they heard him called out to them 

“Ryu.” Zannah noted, her hand on her sword more out of habit than caution. 
“Succubus?” An equally cautiously Haohmaru asked. 
“Possible.” Zannah narrowed her eyes as the couple approaches. She felt something in air yet she can’t place a finger on what exactly was wrong with the entire picture. 
“Ryu san! ChunLi San!” Rimururu yelled and ran towards to the couple. 
  
  

ChunLi frowned and narrowed her eyes as the screaming girl ran towards them. A reminder from Ryu and her expression changes back to neutral. Still she kept her face buried in Ryu’s chest. Partly due to the fact that she can’t stand the sweetness in the young girl’s voice. 

“Li’s tired. Best get her inside.” Ryu said quietly, carrying ChunLi into the temple. 

As the couple passed by her, Nakaruru felt a chill in the air in spite of the warm sunshine. Some about them frightened her. Something had happen but what? Nakaruru felt that somehow they had let a snake into a chicken roost and that snake is picking them off one by one. 
  

As gently as he could, Ryu laid his wife down on the bed of dried grass by the wall. Sitting by her side, he gently ‘wakes’ her to the group of concern faces. ChunLi slowly open her eyes and studied the concerned faces one by one. 

“Zannah jie.” She said softly, at the same time making mental note to be wary of the silver hair woman. After all, this woman had known her for a long time. The other three members of the Inner Circle she had to be careful around too. As for the other five in the group, they don’t really know her at all. 

ChunLi leaned closer to Ryu as her gaze shifted from Zannah to the each and every member, all the while drawing from what Ryu remembered. The moment her eyes locked onto Nakaruru’s there was silence. She didn’t like the way the younger woman kept looking her. 
  

A warning jolt of fiery pain made Nakaruru gasped slightly. ChunLi had sent a warning that she knew Nakaruru suspected something. She challenges the younger woman to tell the others what she knew of, knowing that none would believe her. 

ChunLi was amused by the way the younger woman seems flustered. She smiled sweetly back at her with a cold glint in her eyes. A sense of satisfaction grew in her when the younger woman broke eye contact and shrunk behind the group. 
  

“How did you escape?!” Rimururu planted herself down in front of ChunLi, large eyes intently watching the older woman with such unnerving sweetness. 

“Standard issues boots. I managed to put together a raft.” ChunLi pointed to her boots, noting the shadow of a smile on Zannah’s face. 
“Where did they take you?” the red hair Shizumaru asked eagerly. 

“There is this island east of here. There was this castle.” ChunLi started, giving them what they need to know. 
“You know that a few nights ago was the night when nine planets aligned. Have you seen or heard anything?” Zannah squatted down, a hand on ChunLi’s shoulder. She didn’t feel anything wrong about ChunLi yet something was shouting in her mind to be careful. 
“….I don’t really know. But I saw Legrene there!” ChunLi looked up, changing the subject. 
  

“Legrene!” Zannah hissed, her eyes narrowed. 
“Pppffff!!! Legrene!” Haohmaru spat his wine out the name. 
“Who’s Legrene?” Rimururu asked, seeing that the name doesn’t seem welcome. 

“Heretic.” Zannah started. 
“One mean woman.” Haohmaru added. 
“Bad blood with almost everybody.” Shizumaru added. 
“Especially your wards.” Kyo frowned. 
  

<  Wards?…. wards..wards… Ah wards… > ChunLi understood from what information Ryu gave her. 

“Huh?” Rimururu blinked 
“"Long story. I'll explain some other time. But have you heard of a certain clan who lost three entire generations of men in a certain war about two thousand years or so ago?" Zannah queried. 
“Deameanous. Three whole generations slaughtered by demons I heard the elders said.” Rimururu answered. 
“They don’t really qualify as demons. It was the men’s fault in the first place to even pick a fight.” Kyo added. 

“So what do we with her?” ChunLi asked, fingering Ryu’s headband as she watches the banter going on in the room. 
“We leave for Shadowlaw.” Zannah said firmly 
“But Legrene’s on that island.” 
“And you don’t look so well. Best to get you back to Shadowlaw.” Haohmaru added. 
“But Legrene is there.” ChunLi insisted, wondering how far she could push. 
“For the moment she is of no importance. And that’s final.” Zannah herded the others outside. 
  

“Indeed she isn’t. I guess.” ChunLi smiled back almost submissively as she lies lazily against Ryu. One hand had been placed on Ryu’s arm since the conversation started. She can’t afford to have him beating up these people at this point in time. 

<<  Patience. Beloved patience.  > > She coos at him, feeling the muscles in his arms relaxed. Her hand snakes up to his face once more gently patting his face. There seem to be some kind of silent conversation between them. 

“Tonight?” he asked, upset by the fact that Zannah had overruled ChunLi. 
“Tonight.” She confirmed with another cool smile. Her eyes close as she drifts into slumber, while Ryu held her and kept watch. It’s doubtful that he would leave her side anytime soon. 

 
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