Story: Loss of a Lifetime (all chapters)

Authors: KaitonLocke

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Chapter 1

Title: Declarations

[Author's notes: SHORTEST fic in my history. One shot, can be convinced to do sequels if asked nicely. ^__^

Rain fell from the sky in heavy sheets. The barren field was now muddy and blood stained. Bodies of slain shinigami littered the hillsides with little space between them. Yoruichi gazed out over her falled subordinates in a zombie like daze. She took slow, lost steps through the fallen and descrated corpses of her comrades and friends. Hidden by the thick sheets of rain, bitter tears fell in mourning for her lost friends.

"Why?" She sobbed quietly. "Why did this happen?" She took several more slow and cautious steps. "You'll receive proper funerals. You all deserve them."

The rain fell harder, forcing Yoruichi to shield her eyes. She bowed her head and yelled her mournfull cry at the sky. She stood there head staring straight into the sky, rain matting her hair flat. She lowered her head slowly toward the ground, catching sight of a lone body moving on a hill a good distance from her. Wide-eyed, Yoruichi flash-stepped over bodies toward the solitary survivor. Upon seeing the person's identity, Yoruichi froze.

"N-n-no ... it can't ... I won't ... NO!" Her agonized scream echoed in the silent hills. "No..." Sobs racked Yoruichi's body as she fell to her knees next to the wounded body of the sole survivor.

"Yoruichi-sama," Soi Fan said, hacking up blood. "I ... I failed you."

"Shh..." Yoruichi crooned. "Be quiet Soi Fan. You need to rest now. Hush, I'll take care of you."

"Yoru ... ichi ... sama," Soi Fan smiled, the color fading from her face slowly. "I thank ... you ... Yoru ... ichi-sama. You were ...*cough* always so kind to me."

"Hush Soi Fan," Yoruichi sobbed. "You don't need to say anything, just rest."

"Yoruichi-sama," Soi Fan was wheezing now, "I want ... I have to tell you something."

"Please Soi Fan," Yoruichi pleaded. "Don't talk, save your energy."

"I have to tell you," Soi Fan continued, "that I've always loved you. *cough* Since the day I saw you as a young girl. I'll always ... love ... you ..."

"Soi Fan!" Yoruichi shook the woman ferverntly. "Soi Fan! Please! SOI FAN!"

Yourichi's agonized cry filled the air. Her sobs echoed into the heavens, wrenching the hearts of all who could hear it. She held Soi Fan's limp body her chest and cried until the grief consumed her completely. Rising to her feet hollowly, Yoruichi used a small part of her energy and carried Soi Fan's body to an empty, flower-covered meadow. Laying Soi Fan near the large willow tree in the meadow's center, Yoruichi gathered the remaining energy in her body and flung it at the ground, easily digging a grave for Soi Fan. Laying Soi Fan's bloody corpse to rest, Yoruichi's tears still fell. After placing the dirt back in the hole over Soi Fan's body, Yoruichi carved a memorial message into the willow's bark.

"I love you too," Yoruichi whispered, tears soaking her face.

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