wrote this and posted it on my Dreamwidth, but this is a slightly
expanded version. It's AU to some of the events of the "All My
Lullabies" series, and is a quick idea of what Hanako would do if Gai
got disillusioned and showed up on her doorstep.
Dead Women Tell No
Hanako's surprised when he shows up shortly before she goes to bed. She
doubted that he'd ever come back again, not after what happened, but
he's there at her doorstep. "I need your help," he says. His scarf is
in disarray, and it's clear he left ship in a hurry.
"Gai?" she asked. "What's the matter?"
Her nephew looks at her with red-rimmed eyes. "It doesn't matter. Can
you get me to safety?"
What had they done to him, finally, to make him lose faith? She's not
sure she wants to know. "They'll track you down. They did before."
"I made sure they can't." He looks at her, and she realizes he knows
the dangers of this as well as she does. She knows that she'll be the
first one they go to after he goes missing, even if - especially if -
they can't track him. "Everything they used... I left on board ship. I
wanted to make sure they couldn't find me."
"I'll do what I can." This is her area of expertise, and she'll do it
well. She has false documents, always has, just in case. She won't ask
questions that Gai won't answer. "How long do you think it'll be before
they find you?"
"I don't think they'll look until late morning. I, um, sleep late."
She nods. "That'll give me time then." They'll come looking, but it'll
be delayed by them assuming that he's out for a walk until they realize
he's missing. She realizes after a few minutes that one of the things
that Gai must have left behind is his transformation device, and her
heart sinks. To see him give up his dream for this... even as she
doesn't want him in danger, she wishes it wasn't happening.
She sends him off on a train early the next morning, hoping that the
money will get him far away from where his former teammates would ever
look. She's done it before. She hoped she never had to, for him.
She almost welcomes when his teammates arrive. Almost welcomes their
sabers. A dead woman can't tell tales, after all. Even as his captain
barks at her, she refuses to answer, thinking of how far he is, how
safe he is.
Hanako might never see him again, but it's worth it to keep him safe.