"Oww!!" Kiefer blurted
out. He landed on his back and kicked up dust around
"Getting a little slow there Kiefer," Anubis called out from where he sat.
"Papa, he's using that
move again!" Kiefer got up and dusted himself. He
narrowed his eyes at his brother. "Glad to finally get you back. About
"Papa and me talked,"
Kieran answered. He was still in a fighting stance,
not letting his guard down. "Told me to stop thinking so much."
"Could have told you that."
He attacked his brother, katana flashing.
Kiefer blocked all his blows with his bo staff. They pushed each other away
"Also asked me if I wanted to leave."
"Wanted to leave?!" Kiefer stood up straight and almost dropped his katana.
"Stop talking boys and
keep fighting," Anubis called out again. Kiefer
turned to his father then quickly turned back. He readied his sword but with
confusion written on his face.
"I'm not leaving."
Kieran attacked him this time. The katana was long
enough that it looked like a no-dachi in Kiefer's hands but he moved it with
the speed that came with experience.
"You better not."
Kiefer pushed him away then quickly came after him before
Kieran had a chance to recover his footing. The other boy landed on his back
with a thud.
"Okay you two, I think
that's enough." Their father walked towards them as
Kiefer helped Kieran up. They were a mess as usual. Their armor was covered
in dust and their hair messier than usual. "You boys better got cleaned up
first before you go inside. Your mother is going to be furious if she sees
you like this." They started to walk away. When they were far away enough
from their father, Kiefer turned to his brother.
"You're not going to go
weird out on me again, are you? Because if you are,
I'm going to beat you up myself."
"Don't worry about it. I'm fine now."
"Good, because I'm going to need help taking down the Ronins."
"I'm there with you. Kief,
did you notice that Halo acted like he knew where
"I know. That's what I
thought bothered you at first. Then that monk came.
You shoulda just let me hit him."
"But did you really want to hurt him Kief?"
"Yes!! He hurt you. That's all I needed to know."
"You don't have to protect me, you know. I can take care of myself."
"I know that but I'm like
Papa. If somebody even looks at Mama wrong, he'll
get them. If somebody messed with you, I'll get them. See how that works?"
"It's because you're older, isn't it?"
Kieran looked at his brother.
He was about a couple of seconds younger than
Kiefer but they still looked the same. His hair was their father's but
Kiefer had his eyes. Sometimes, Kiefer would look too much like him and
Kieran just knew that he would follow him anywhere.
"Kiefer. Niichan. Big brother." He threw both arms around his neck.
"What are you doing Kieran?"
He tried to wrestle him away but finally gave
up. "Let go of me."
"I will never, ever, ever leave you! Or Mama! Or Papa! Or the Netherworld!"
Kieran kissed his brother's
cheek and quickly let him go before he had a
chance to recover and smack him upside the head. He smiled at him then went
to their father. Falling into step with him, he tugged at his boot. Anubis
stopped and looked down at him, confused.
"Come down here Papa." Kieran gestured for him to duck down.
"What is it Kieran?" Anubis knelt down on one knee.
"I love you Papa."
He hugged him just as he did Kiefer. "And I will never
leave you!" He kissed his cheek too and went off running. Anubis watched
him leave and slowly turned to Kiefer.
"What just happened here?"
"Don't know," Kiefer
shrugged. "He kissed me!" The boy wiped at his cheek.
"What did you tell him Papa?"
"He's back to his old self, huh?" Anubis reached for his son.
"I think too far back." Kiefer walked up to him, still a little miffed.
"Don't worry about Kieran.
You look after him and he'll follow you.
nodded. "I want to go back and finish the Ronin