*Update* Not only is the story complete, it's been revised after some wonderfully helpful advice from three lovely beta readers. So if you want to read a novel length adventure fanfic about Kyo and Yuya please check it out!
Archive of Our Own:
I changed the title to "The Golden Princess and the Demon Prince" after a discussion with a reader. I'd be happy to hear more feedback and suggestions, if anybody is interested.
Here's a scene from the first chapter, to give you a little preview:
Muramasa laughed with Yuya for a moment before bidding her goodbye, climbing up into his wagon and whistling at the horses to get them moving. Yuya turned back to the patient lying in the room, crossed her arms, and frowned. His breathing had steadied, though his face was pale.
She sat at the edge of the room and rested her back against the wall, sighing. Her thoughts returned to the face of the dead man she had been hunting for nearly a year, and the anger began to bubble up inside her again. Her quest for vengeance had been little more than a dream for so long, then one day a few years ago she had happened to overhear the bragging of a drunkard. A one armed drunk was telling tales of his time as the leader of a band of mercenaries. He alleged they were feared throughout the land and they were asked to participate in a raid on a ninja village. As she listened to his story, a way for her to get revenge came to her. It would be impossible to kill all of the men who participated in the attack, but if she could find the leaders - those most responsible - their deaths would pay in some small way for the destruction of her home.
She had returned after dark to question that mercenary. He told her that he never learned the name of the lord who had hired him and could only remember three other captains. This was the most information she had ever possessed. Now she had three names. Three famous mercenary leaders she could track. She was persistent and determined, and now she was also hopeful.
Her search led her to Renji of the Iron Fist, a man still leading a skilled band of mercenaries. Yuya was able to successfully enter his room unseen, but Renji was much tougher than the drunk had been and she was forced to quickly kill him when he sounded an alarm. She escaped with her life but hadn’t managed to get any names from him.
The next man on the list, the Devourer Kunimasa, had been captured and executed by a local lord. The final name was that of the man who her current patient had dispatched earlier that day; Genrou the Wolf. She sighed and rested her head against the wall. She had no idea where to resume her search for clues. Yuya suddenly felt very tired.
Yuya did not know she had fallen asleep until she woke with a start. Someone was looming over her. It took her a moment to realize that the futon in the center of the room was empty and her patient was standing in front of her. His arms were crossed across his chest and an appraising look shadowed his face. He wore only his hakama, his chest still exposed except for the bandages she had applied. As she rose to her feet, Yuya saw that his eyes were blood red. Her heart skipped a beat. Something about those eyes was both frightening and magnetic at the same time. Like a raging fire, they held both beauty and danger.
“What are you doing up? You should be resting,” Yuya said, adjusting her clothing as she attempted to regain her composure. She instinctively pressed her back up against the wall as the man leaned closer.
“This is your work?” he asked, gesturing to the bandages covering his torso.
“It is,” Yuya said, wondering if she could escape by sliding along the wall, making her way toward the door.
The man put a hand on the wall between her and the door. She looked back at his face, wondering why the urge to get away from him was so strong. Besides his crimson eyes he seemed normal; a young warrior with that air of arrogance common among samurai. Yuya had dealt with plenty of men who thought they could intimidate her just because they were bigger or higher born. She lifted her chin defiantly and met his unnerving gaze squarely.
He smiled slightly and then deliberately placed his other hand on her breast and squeezed. For a shocked moment Yuya stood frozen. Her face turned red. She dropped out of his reach and sprang across the room. Spinning to face him she pulled a knife out of her sleeve and drew it back to throw.
At that moment the door slid open and a girl entered balancing a tray holding a bottle of sake and a pair of cups. She looked from Yuya’s defensive crouch and bared weapon to Kyo. Kyo pivoted on the ball of his foot and sat with his back against the wall. He gestured imperiously to the girl to bring him the sake. As she put it down he caught her wrist and leered at her.
“Why don’t you stay and pour for me? I could use a more feminine companion,” Kyo said, looking not at the serving girl, but at Yuya.
The girl stammered an apology and backed quickly out of the room, giving Yuya one last wide-eyed look before she shut the door. Kyo sighed and poured himself a drink, which he quickly tossed back and followed with another. Yuya relaxed slightly but didn’t put her weapon away, still feeling unsettled.
“Why did you kill that man? Genrou the Wolf?” she asked.
The only answer given was a small quirk on an eyebrow.
“Did you hunt him down, or was he after you?” Yuya persisted.
Kyo downed another cup and swirled the bottle to judge the amount of liquid left.
“Does he have any surviving companions? Do you have any clues about his hideout? Why won’t you answer any of my questions?” Her voice began to rise in frustration, despite her best efforts. She was beginning to sound frantic even to herself.
Kyo poured the last of the bottle down his throat. He then threw the empty bottle at Yuya, who caught it expertly and drew back her knife to throw it in retaliation.
“Get me another bottle and I’ll tell you what I know,” he said.
Yuya let out an angry sigh as she put her weapon away and stalked out of the room. She returned with a fresh bottle. Kyo proceeded to drink the entire thing before saying, “He tried to kill me because he wanted money.”
He rested his head against the wall behind him and promptly fell asleep. Yuya clenched her teeth in anger and resisted the temptation to kick the infuriating man in the ribs. She decided he should be able to finish recovering fine on his own. Besides, she couldn’t stand being around him a second longer.