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Dolls

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The little girl sat on the ground near her dollhouse. She was wearing a white sundress and her long blond hair was let down, the tips resting near her small, bare feet on the ground. She had bright purple eyes and a smile so small that it was nearly invisible, nonetheless it was there adorning her cute face.

She was playing with hand made dolls which she had created all on her own. There were hundreds of them all around her. They all had names too. Izuma, Arima, Nema, Minema, Touma, Kurima, Kazuma...

She was happy playing house with them. She loved all of them dearly for none of them were bad to her. They always carried the smiles which she had drawn on their faces with her red strings and needles. They were there to keep her company and help her forget the endless darkness which surrounded her.

But something was wrong. She was working on one of the dolls' face yet she couldn't disstich the frown on its face. She knew she hadn't done that herself.

She looked around and every visible doll had that scary frown. Suddenly they all started to fray. The buttons she used for their eyes popped out, the stiches that held them together ripped and the fabrics she used for them teared apart on their own. They blackened and smoke started rising from them as if they were being burned.

She screamed.

She backed away.

She coughed.

The smoke followed her...

Surrounded her...

She couldn't escape.

She was choking.

She was crying.

Her dear dolls were all destroyed.

Gone.

She was alone.

She had no hope...

...Then it was over. The little girl opened her eyes not realising she had closed them. Indeed she was alone. Her dolls were gone and her dollhouse was crumbling.

She got up and silently walked around. The pieces of wood and cloth...

Strings...

Needles...

Ashes...

But she could see something on the ashes. Something not burned. She fell on her knees and started to dig around not caring about her beautiful dress.

There it was.

One of her precious dolls.

Unharmed.

Unfrayed.

It was there, in her chubby hands. She was not entirely alone. It was there. Kazuma was there.

She wiped her tears away and hugged Kazuma to her small, chest. As lomg as she had him, it was okay. She wasn't alone. She could start all over again. As long as she had Kazuma, there was still hope.

So she started again.

She put Kazuma near herself and made new dolls from new clothes and strings. She gave them new names. Karuha, Kinuha, Kazuha, Akiha, Kuraha, Tsuguha, Aiha, Mineha, Kugaha, Suzuha,...

She built an entirely new dollhouse and she placed Kazuma in it with her new dolls.

It was okay again.

So she started playing again.

She talked to them.

She dressed them.

She öade rooms for them.

But as soon as she turned away from them to get some more string, the same thing happened again. Her dolls frayed and burned.

But she didn't escape again.

She inhaled the smoke and fought to save them.

She desperately clutched them.

She took as many of them as she could in her arms.

She digged around in the ashes and looked for the dolls which wasn't burnt already.

But as soon as she left the ones in her arms, they burned.

She tried so hard, but she couldn't save them.

Once again, it was only Kazuma and her.

So she hugged him to her chest again.

She cried and cried, her sobs shaking both her and Kazuma and her tears staining his face.

But it could be alright again right?

She still had Kazuma.

It would be alright.

So she hugged him tighter. She wouldn't let anything happen to him.

Then she heard the sound of a cloth ripping and her arms burned. She screamed and loosened her arms.

Kazuma was fraying and burning on the ground before her. His stiches were already ripping.

No.

She couldn't let that happen.

She couldn't lose him.

She leapt forward and took him back. She desperately tried to hold him in one piece as she reached for her needle.

She could fix him.

She could save him.

Except she couldn't.

She wasn't nearly fast enough as he burned before her eyes. No matter how many stiches she made, no matter how much cloth she used, no matter how many hours she struggled to save him, she couldn't.

In the end Kazuma was nothing more than a pile of ashes in her small hands.

She cried.

She screamed.

"Kazumaa.....please come back Kazuma! "

"KAZUMAAA!"

Bishamon bolted awake with tears in her eyes and her hands gripping the sheets so hard that her knuckles turned white.

"KAZUMAA!"

She burried her face in her paşms and started sobbing in the dark of the night, all alone on her canopy bed.

"Viina! What's wrong?"

Kazuma rushed to her bedside, turning on her nightlight. She looked at him with teary eyes and hugged him tightly, burying her face in his chest.

She inhaled his scent and sobbed as he wrapped his arms around her.

"Please don't die Kazuma! You can't die! You are all I have! Please Kazuma! Don't leave me!"

Kazuma hugged her tighter and held her closer to himself.

"I won't go away Viina. I am here.... I wilö never leave you..."

She listened to his soothing words as she sloely calmed down. Her sobs slowly subsided and she stopped trembling in his arms.

"It was only a nightmare. Now you should go back to sleep."

He said after she quieted down and he made a move to get up. But she clutched his shirt, digging her nails in his flesh a little.

"Don't go..."

She whispered so quietly but it still seemed to work. Kazuma sighed and hugged her again. Then he slowly slid down to lie on the bed with her.

She quickly covered him in her blankets with herself afraid that he might change his mind.

Then she nuzzled comfortably in his chest and he wrapped his arms around her.

It was so casual to sleep together for them for they had shared many sleepless nights just laying together after the Ma Clan's death and after that he had stayed with her many nights to comfort her. Sometimes even she would slip quietly in his room as he slept and lie down near him. He would always drop an arm on hee and pull her close to him as he slept. And she would relax into his warmth.

That night she found herself sleeping soundly without another nightmare with him near her.

When the morning came, she found herself alone. For a moment, she was scared but she was quick to remember that it was the day of Kamuhakari. Therefore his day had probably started before sunrise to make the preparations.

She sighed and dressed herself.

~o~

In the Kamuhakari, every god and shinki was cheerful. Sı much that they didn't even notice when she slipped outside. She had even managed to ditch Kazuma and go away on her own.

But it was for him.

It was to protect him.

She would stop the sorcerer on her own. She would find the Hafuru Mono and she would face the sorcerer. She would beat him.

She didn't care if she would be a rebel. She didn't care if the heaven wouldn't take her back. She didn't care if she was hurt. She didn't care if she died.

It was for him.

Kazuma was hee everything.

Her light.

Her guide.

Her family.

A part of her own soul.

She wouldn't be able to live without him. She couldn't breathe without him. She couldn't bear losing him.

So he had to live.

He had to be okay.

He had to exist forever.

Even if all her other shinki died.

Even if she died.

He had to live.

And she would make sure of it.

She made her way to the cave with those thoughts.

She would protect him.