This wasn't real, if it were than they were all sure this was what hell looked like.
Not because of the destroyed buildings or the many casualties, they had all seen enough of that.
It was Kagura who stood over it all looking out at the destruction she had bestowed upon them.
Her eyes wide, filled with bloodlust, blood pouring out of her eyes like tears.
Blood, she was absolutely covered in it, her hands and feet, her clothes had long since lost their original color.
Her red hair dyed a few shades darker, one bun becoming undone.
And that smile, Okita had seen her smile when she fought him but this wasn't the same.
She looked crazed, happy, delighted at the sight of their fallen comrades.
Shinpachi had tried reasoning with her again, Gintoki had too but neither had reached her and had refused to fight her.
Kamui was still going at it, their father had been to broken to stand up again, he had been surpassed by both his children years before.
Most of the Shinsengumi had been wiped out, either left broken and barely breathing or with their soul stripped from their body.
She had to be stopped, Hijikata, Kondou and the others had decided, they were the Shinsengumi, it was up to them to protect Edo at any cost.
Now it was up to Okita to distract her while Kamui retreated so he, Gintoki, Shinpachi, and the remaining Shinsengumi could hopefully find a way to knock her out or trap her.
If push comes to shove, Hijikata would make sure that the threat was eliminated.
He had looked at Okita, when he had said it.
Both Shinpachi and Gintoki had looked like they were ready to murder him, Okita figured he had the same look on his face as Hijikata assured them that he would only act as a last resort. But Okita would make sure it wouldn't come to that, he would be the last resort, he would get her back.
She had him in her sights in an instant as he drew closer, the smile on her face seemed to broaden as she launched Kamui away with a punch to the gut.
Now it was only the two of them as the others tried to stay out of sight.
She charged at him without warning, he was lucky enough to doge and block her first three kicks and punches. He had fought her more times than he could count, he knew how she fought but this was different. She was faster, stronger and more precise than before.
He had never really wanted to see her go full Yato on him, he had seen her brother fight and Okita knew that he would not win from him easily.
From what he had heard from Shinpachi, Kagura had gone full Yato once, almost killing Abuto. Shinpachi had been able to calm her down from it but now she had gone in further than he or Gintoki could reach.
Now even Kamui and Umibozu didn't reach her, Kamui had even temporarily lost controle, his sister's bloodlust awakening his own.
Others had tried to talk sense into her but they were all met with violent attacks and broken bones.
"Yo China-girl, you can knock it off now!"
He yelled at her as he shoved her back from an attack.
Her blue eyes were wide and piercing, that wide smile twitched at the sound of his voice.
Okita narrowed his eyes.
It seemed she was still in there some where.
It gave Okita hope that he would be able to stop her, to get his rival back.
Because this wasn't Kagura, this wasn't the China he knew, this was a crazed monster on a bloody bender.
This was the Yato blood in her veins, keeping her prisoner in her own body.
She struck again, Okita tried blocking but got his leg nearly ripped off by the sheer force of her kick. He screamed as he felt the bone in his leg splinter.
He struggled to take steps back, creating more distance between them, when in fact he just wanted to hold her face in his hands and headbutt her so hard she would turn back to her regular self.
Kagura swayed as she stalked towards him, dragging out his inevitable demise.
Than she fully stopped her movements, a hand going to rub against her head as she started laughing like a madman.
Deep within the recesses of her mind Kagura heard his voice, the voice that always sounded irritating. The voice that had called her out when she returned after two years, the voice of the rival she grew to appreciate.
That voice belonged to Okita Sougo, she remembered that voice and the face that came with it.
She remembered him and the Shinsengumi and-
She screamed, it hurt, fighting against the darkness, it hurt more than last time. It was pressing down on her, more than before.
What had she been doing? Why had she lost it? Was it Shinpachi again? Was he hurt? Or was it Gin-chan, Sadaharu or maybe even the Baldy or the idiot big brother of hers? Were they okay?
She needed to know if they were okay, she needed to snap out of it.
Okita looked on as Kagura screamed at seemingly nothing, clutching her head and falling to her knees.
He leaned on his sword as he tried moving in closer, tried to reach her.
"Come on you brat! You're still in there even if you pretend not to!"
It sounded much more desperate than he intended it to sound but it seemed to do the trick as she stopped thrashing and raised her head.
She showed him that smile again, that smile filled with bloodlust, he hadn't reached her.
He heard Hijikata and Kondou shout orders, as seemingly from nowhere metal chains wrapped around her limbs, pinning her body down to the ground.
She thrashed against them, breaking more of them than the Shinsengumi could trap her with over and over again.
Kagura stood up again, looking at the people gathered around her as if they were all prey for her to be devoured.
The Shinsengumi had come out of their hiding place, Gintoki and Shinpachi among them. Kamui stood with them, their father next to him as they looked helplessly at the weapons aimed at Kagura.
This was the last resort, bazookas, guns, rocket launchers. It would be enough to subdue her. Permanently.
Gintoki and Shinpachi wanted nothing more than to try again and get her back but even they could see that this wasn't going to work, her Yato blood had grown to strong. It broke them to know that Kagura was lost to them and she wasn't going to return this time.
It was Okita, he was still infront of her, he could easily get away even with his broken leg but he didn't.
He only looked at Kagura as he screamed for them to hold off their attack.
She was crying, not tears of blood but real tears, that smile was still on her face but she was crying.
A hand went to touch her face and wipe the tear away, leaving a streak of blood on her cheek.
Kagura looked at her hands, stained in blood.
Was that her blood?! Was it someone else's!?
She looked around with her own eyes, as herself, at the fallen men around her, the men she had-
Oh God, what had she done!!!? How many had she-
Kagura fell to her knees, her head felt like it was splitting, this wasn't her, she wasn't a monster she couldn't have done this.
It was his voice, it was Sougo, she looked up at him.
His brown hair was tousled, his eyes teary and than his leg-
It was bleeding and bend into a weird angle, she froze, she...did that..?
Kagura looked at her hands again, so much blood, she had hurt Sougo. A terrifying thought came to her, she looked around frantically, spotting Gintoki and Shinpachi in the crowd being held back by Shinsengumi men.
They were bruised and battered, blood staining their clothes, flowers of purple and ugly yellow painting their faces and bodies.
Kamui and Baldy were not far off, they were off worse than the other two, being supported by others as they wanted to go to her.
Kagura looked back at Sougo, her smile had disappeared and now only her tears were there.
Her voice was hoarse and sounded as broken as Sougo's leg.
The full extent of her rampage seemed to hit her as she just stared at her bloody hands and didn't move again.
Finally Shinpachi and Gintoki broke free of the Shinsengumi holding them back, racing as fast as they could to Kagura's side, Sadaharu had finally appeared following the other two's lead.
They called out to her as Sougo dropped infront of her, taking her hands in his.
She looked at him dazed, as if she wasn't completely there.
He didn't know when he started leaking out of his eyes but Sougo seemed to finally notice he did and wiped them away.
"Yeah, it's me."
Her eyes focused on him, a look of utter guilt came on her face right as the sound of a gun going off rang through the air, hitting her in the chest, making her fall back.
Sougo caught her as she fell, Gintoki, Shinpachi and Sadaharu arriving at their side.
"China-girl!! Hey, talk to me!!!"
Sougo was frantic, she was bleeding, his hands became covered in her blood.
Kagura woke up four days later, a foul taste in her mouth, a sore feeling in her body.
She awoke to Shinpachi and Gintoki sleeping on the seats next to her bed, her father sat on her other side.
"How are you feeling?"
Was the first thing Umibozu asked his daughter but she didn't acknowledge him, she just kept staring at the ceiling.
She stayed like that for a week, no one could make her talk, but that didn't stop them from trying.
Everyone she knew came by and tried to coax a few words out of her but to no avail.
That was until Okita Sougo, together with Kondou and Hijikata, came by to pay their respects.
It was only when the other two men and Gintoki stepped out of the room to discuss what was going to happen next, Sougo was left alone with Kagura.
But she only stared at the wall across from her not giving him a second glance.
Sougo had been struggling to accept that many of his colleagues had been hurt by Kagura, she had been unstoppable in that state. Sougo hadn't been told who had shot her, Hijikata had told him to not make a scene.
How couldn't he??!! She could have died??!!
Why!!! Why did that scare him so much?!!
Like it was the most important thing to him that she stay alive, not because he didn't want to lose his rival but because he actually cared about her and wanted her to be well.
He knew why he felt this way, why he wanted her to be safe and why he wanted her to still be here.
He had come to the conclusion that he wanted her here because she could be with him, because he liked her. He respected her, not only as a rival and fighter but as a friend.
He realized his feelings when they had met again on that bridge, it was raining and they had fought and decided it was a tie. They now looked out over the river as she held her umbrella up.
He stood under it with her as he had forgotten his, which was rare.
When she had left, he had wished she stayed longer, so that they could look out over the river some more.
Now he was sitting next to her, he hadn't spoken to her since she got shot in the chest.
"You seem to feel better."
At first he didn't think she would react but she did turn her head to him, a look of recognition in her eyes.
Something clicked in his head, from what Shinpachi had told them, Kagura had told him about this darkness that enveloped her.
Like she was a prisoner in her own mind and his voice had been a light she followed out.
Her eyes went to his, her lips parted as if she wanted to say something.
It was working! She was still stuck in her own mind! And he could get her out!
Sougo took her hands in his, her fingers wrapped around his, he gave a reassuring squeeze.
" You're still there aren't you, you brat?"
She looked at him, hopefully, as she slowly tried to shake her head.
"Okay, that's good to hear. Those two idiots are really worried about you."
She tried speaking again, tears welling up in her eyes.
Sougo huffed with a small smile on his face.
"Don't worry the men know that wasn't you."
She looked at him surprised.
"They wouldn't believe that you'd be that strong."
He teased her lightly.
She let go of one of his hands, raising it slowly to flick him between the eyes.
It didn't hurt at all, but still Sougo did flinch back.
"What the hell China-girl!??"
She laughed, that pretend mocking laugh, it was quiet and hoarse but it was there. She looked like the girl he knows.
Bratty, stubborn and as un-ladylike as they come.
Still, he liked her more then even he knew.
Why did those words make him flush? It's not like she didn't say it to him before, maybe it was because now he had figured out his feelings.
If that was it than maybe he needed to know her feelings too.
His blush deepened, she looked at him confused, why did he look like that?
"Look, Kagura, I-I...."
He stopped when he saw the look on her face, she....found this funny?
He was about to pour his heart out and this brat was already laugh at him, why did he have to like her!!?
Was Sougo's short answer, what had she said?
"Oh, and you think I am!??"
From there they ended in a verbal argument, throwing half-hearted insults at each other making the other laugh.
And that's how the others found them.
They would be teased relentlessly after that by them.
The two of them would also tease each other, they may like each other but that didn't mean they couldn't mess with each other.
They were on the bridge again, it was raining again, they had fought again but now both of them held back.
They were standing underneath her umbrella, the rain dripping off from the edges.
"When did you know?"
Kagura looked at him thinking about what he meant before realizing.
"You called out to me, I heard you and I knew it was for some kind of reason, so I already kinda guessed."
"You really are smarter than you look."
She raged at him as he stared at her, a thought came to his mind.
He leaned forward, his hands capturing her face and holding it still.
His lips brushed hers lightly for only a second as he pulled back and let her face go.
She had fallen silent, her face flushed as he smirked at her. She was going to wack his ass later but right now all she wanted was those lips back on hers.
She grabbed him by the front of his shirt, pulling him down to catch his lips with hers.