DISCLAIMER: I don't own these characters that Q & U created. I'm just borrowing.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: This takes place a few hours before O-Ren leaves to join the other Vipers in El Paso to participate in the killing of the Bride (Kill Bill Vol 1). Written from Sofie's point of view.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

By Briana


O-Ren enters the room and glances at the bed. There her Vipers uniform -- the sleek, black turtleneck and pants -- is ready and waiting, as requested. You bow gracefully, but do not expect the words 'thank you' from her. Her silence is thanks enough.

Without words, you help her out of her kimono, the black gown that she so often uses. This is not the first time you've done this and hopefully not the last. Layer after layer is undone until finally, there is nothing but the beautiful blossom underneath.

Carefully, you pull at the chopsticks that hold the perfect bun high atop her head, and slowly a cascade of obsidian tresses begin to unravel down her back. She has asked that her hair be cut short, the way it was when you first met. Though it pains you to see something so magnificent go to waste, you will do it. You will do anything she asks.

Once she is satisfied, you offer her her pants. When she takes them from you, her fingers linger past yours. Again you bow, but this time, there is a small smile at your lips. Not a smile like the one you use in public. No, this one is sincere. Perhaps even warm and genuine. In this life, such words dare exist.

You reach for the turtleneck next. She raises her arms for you and you lovingly slide it on over her head. When at last it is on, you tug on the edges for her, making sure it fits her lithe form just so. It fits perfectly, of course. Like a second skin.

Black boots complete the ensemble. She takes a minute to survey herself in the mirror, allowing a moment's vanity to see that everything is in place. You decide, somewhat sadly, that she looks more modern this way. But that is the point. This way, she blends in with the others.

O-Ren will be leaving for America today, to El Paso, Texas, where she will join the rest of the Deadly Viper Assasination Squad. Your gaze falls to the floor. Suddenly it is too painful to continue looking at her.

Logically, you know why she must leave. Rationally, you understand what she must do. But selfishly, you do not want to be left behind. Not if it means being apart from her. You almost want to tell her, beg her to take you with her, but you won't. Until she happens to glance over at you. She seems to know what you're thinking.

"If she survives, she'll kill you, too," O-Ren tells you, in English. Her voice is calm, casual.

"I would rather die at your side than stay here alone." Your face does not betray emotion, but your words cannot hide your anguish.

It is enough to give O-Ren pause. Your heart, though cold and cruel, cries out to her and it's as if she hears. In this life she knows loyalty is hard to come by.

She goes to you then, holds your delicate face in her assassin's hands and takes your mouth prisoner with her own. You are a willing captive. Seconds, then minutes, seem to pass before you can recover from her passion.

She withdraws, if only for a breath, then leaves tender kisses of permission on your lips.

The End

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