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A Scarf on a Cold Day

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The drifts were piling up, making the morning gloomy and dark; they should be packing up soon. No one had expected the snow in the middle of the night but they were too tired to do more than grudgingly move together. Sanzo's breath ghosted Hakkai's cheek for a solid hour, until Sanzo had woken, mumbled something like "didn't take you for a pervert," and rolled over.

Hakkai had been cold for the rest of the night.

An hour before dawn, he'd gotten up to pace, stamp the heat back into his limbs. He hadn't gone far, but far enough to slip into a clearing. The snow was falling gently now, sticking in his hair, tickling his cheeks as he wished for his scarf. Kanan would have scolded him for braving the elements like this, dusting the snow from his hair, but she would have understood when he wrapped his scarf around her neck, tucking in the ends to avoid a draft.

The bang of a gunshot startled him. Gojyo's dulcet tones came a second later; he'd probably need a mediator.


When Sanzo rolled back over Hakkai was gone. He probably just got up to take a piss, so Sanzo lay on his back, closing his eyes as snow drifted to his face, melting on his skin in sticky trails of tears. Hakkai was taking too damn long.

Sanzo followed the footprints, finding Hakkai in a clearing, arms wound around himself as he stared up into the sky. His hair was dark against the landscape, his skin like a porcelain doll; against the white sky he looked just as breakable.

Sanzo tightened his scarf—on loan from Hakkai—and almost stepped towards him, but Gojyo stirred, demanded Sanzo's lighter, and Sanzo had to fire a shot past the gluttonous kappa.

When Hakkai finally approached, a banal smile painted on his face, Sanzo had the inexplicable urge to dust the snow from his hair.