acenpokerface (acenpokerface) wrote,
acenpokerface
acenpokerface

Through a Glass Darkly, Ch. 4

Title: Through a Glass Darkly, Chapter Four: Best Served Cold
Author: acenpokerface
Rating: PG-13
Warnings: Mentions of sex.
Pairings: 1896, mentions of 5986, 27K, LamPin, pretty much every het pairing out there.
Summary: Haru considered her friend. Yes, it was definitely Chrome-chan, even if she was 10 years older. But it was a little shocking to see her ram her trident into Hibari-san's stomach as if she did it every day.

Disclaimer: I don’t own KHR or any of its characters—that honor goes to Akira Amano. However, if there was an alternate universe where I owned Hibari, you can be certain I wouldn’t be sharing him. :)

.



...

Future Time: Chrome

...

At twenty-nine, Hibari Chrome considered herself to be a very patient person; some of it rubbed off from Mukuro-sama, some of it was merely her own disposition, and some of it was just years of practice. She lived with Ken and Chikusa, fought sight by side with Ryohei-san and Gokudera-san, looked after Lambo-kun and I-pin-chan, and married Kyoya. In every relationship, she had been the voice of reason and caution, the cool calculation to balance the heated passion. (And whatever Kyoya claimed, she and Tetsu-san knew patience was not one of his virtues.)

All in all, probably the only person more patient than her in the entire Vongola family was Kyoko-san, and she was rather proud of the distinction.

However, there was a limit to things, and she had reached hers about a week ago now.

Kyoya, of course, had practically lost any semblance of tolerance the minute their plane landed in Italy.

“What do the Ghibellines think they’re playing at?” he snarled, pacing the length of the suite provided for them.

Chrome sat cross-legged on the bed, going over surveillance reports and carefully, carefully noting patterns of movement. She glanced at her husband out of the corner of her eye, gauged his mood to be sufficiently under control not to need intervention, and replied, “They’ve recently recruited a new engineer to help refine their box weapons, and think that it will be enough to carve a corner out of our eastern territory. Boss wants them to make the first move before doing anything. You know his policies.”

“They’re idiotic, herbivorous policies,” he growled.

“They make him different,” she said quietly.

They make him greater than others, she thought. They make me remember why it is I would follow him to the ends of hell and back.

She didn’t say those thoughts aloud, however, and Kyoya merely scoffed. “Just this once, I wish he would forget his conscience and let me kill those worthless sheep already. We all know how this is going to end.”

Chrome looked at the papers in her hands, the stark black ink on white paper that so matter-of-factly listed the deaths of two bystanders here, the kidnapping of an engineer’s daughter there, all the human lives destroyed by the Ghibellines in their wake neatly accounted for.

Yes, they knew how this would end.

But the Ghibellines had yet to move on Vongola territory, and by the laws of the mafia, Tsuna could do nothing yet without risking an all-out war. It was best to be patient.

Secretly, though, she agreed with her husband, and with some similar reasons, as it turned out: she wanted to get this over with, she wanted
to go home, she wanted to see her daughter again.

But she had a few motives of her own, as well: they had mocked Boss in negotiations, their second-in-command had leered at Kyoko-san like she was a piece of meat and not a person, they killed a five-year-old girl and her father in the street.

The thought of that last, especially, was enough to make Chrome see red.

But then she remembered that revenge was best served cold, and the first bloom of mindless, snarling anger gave way to eerily tranquil calm.
She would wait for her chance, and when it came (and oh, yes, it would come), she would make the Ghibellines wish they’d never dared to even think of crossing the Vongola.

She was Mist, and she would create nothing from something, she would erase her Family’s enemies from memory itself.

Her husband turned and saw the cold, resolute fury in her eyes, and it kindled a fire in his own. He strode over to the bed, tossed the reports away, and brought his mouth down on hers, biting her lip hard enough to draw blood.   

She kissed him back just as fiercely, and they spent the next hour or so venting their frustrations on each other, the marks of his impatience leaving blooming purple bruises on her skin, the weight of her anger leaving long red scratches on his.

After, she whispered to him, “Soon. We will destroy them soon. And then we will go home.”

He closed his eyes and smiled, the curve of his mouth a feral, wordless promise.



The next morning, after Kyoya had persuaded Yamamoto-san to spar with him, Chrome tapped quietly on her friend’s door before entering.

“Haru-san?”

The Vongola’s chief lawyer was sitting at a massive, ornate desk and muttering to herself as she pored through books and sheaves of papers, her face awash in the contrasting lights of her computer console and the quaint, old-fashioned desk lamps. She looked up at the sound of Chrome’s voice. “Huh—? Oh, Chrome-chan! Come in, come in.”

Chrome made her way past the maze of scattered books and maps on the floor to sit in the comfy seat in front of the desk, not quite able to hide the small smile on her face as she did so. “I can come back later if you’re busy,” she offered.

Haru waved the suggestion off. “Nonsense! I barely get to see you as it is, what with Hibari-san insisting you live in Japan, and me being stuck here in Italy with my stupid husband. Hahi, my only consolation is that my boys, Tsuna-kun, Kyoko-chan, and everyone else are here, too, and they can keep me sane when he goes off on one of his idiotic rants. It’s a miracle I haven’t strangled him yet.”

Chrome’s smile widened at her words, knowing full-well that Haru thought Italy was probably the most awesome country in the world, with the possible exception of Egypt (she, like her husband, had a fondness for the ancient pyramids and hieroglyphs). And, of course, their constant bickering was simply part and parcel of her and Gokudera-san’s relationship, to the point that sometimes Chrome thought arguing was their way of flirting. “Sorry to be the odd one out,” she said. “Kyoya would never leave Namimori for long.”

“And you would never leave Kyoya,” Haru replied, wrinkling her nose. “Honestly, Chrome-chan, couldn’t you have married somebody else? It was so much easier getting cake with you when you lived here in the mansion, and not halfway across the world.”

“I know,” Chrome said soothingly. “I wish there wasn’t so much distance, too. But, well, you always did insist on me marrying someone tall, dark, and handsome.”

“I did, didn’t I?” Haru said. “I should have said ‘tall, dark, handsome, and sane.’”

Chrome chuckled. “Not sure it would have stopped me. I’m not the most mentally stable person myself.”

Haru grinned ruefully. “Trust me, you’re definitely on the saner side of the Vongola’s sliding scale of psychotic whack-jobs. And Hibari is at least partly responsible for your absolutely gorgeous daughter, so I guess he can be forgiven for stealing you away from us. You got any more pictures of my darling goddaughter?”

Chrome nodded and pulled out her wallet to show the latest pictures of the love of her life, her heart and soul, her little Nami.

Haru sighed happily. “God, she’s so beautiful! And she looks just like Hibari! Hahi! Look at her scowl! Her eyes are all yours, though,” she said, smiling.

Chrome tilted her head. “Really? I always thought they looked more like Hibari’s. The shape of them, at least.”

“Nah. They’re all big and violet and really, really pretty. She’s even got your eyelashes.” Haru handed her back the picture, but Chrome shook her head.

“No, keep it. That’s your copy. I have one for Kyoko-san, Bianchi-san, I-Pin-chan, and Hana-san, too.”

“All the girls, huh? That’s good, seeing as she’s the first of the second-generation to be female.” Haru looked a little wistful. “Hayato doesn’t want me to have more children just yet, seeing as how the last pregnancy was so…traumatic.”

Chrome frowned, remembering the incident vividly. “That was the delivery only, and besides, we killed all the Pozzo Neros, didn’t we? It’s not like anyone else will be stupid enough to shoot you when you’re pregnant after they saw what we did to them.”

Haru sighs. “You know how overprotective Hayato gets. He really doesn’t want to risk it, since he nearly lost me and the boys last time. But he always wanted a little girl and I…”

Chrome reached over and held her hand. “Keep on talking to him. He’ll come around,” she said reassuringly. “And if not, you can always get Haruka-kun and Hayate-kun to work on him. They want a little sister, too, don’t they?”

Haru laughed. “They will after I talk to them! That’s a great idea, Chrome-chan.”

“Ah, that reminds me. I have toys for them and Sora-kun,” Chrome said, referring to Haru and Gokudera’s twins and Kyoko and Tsuna’s son.
“I’m sorry I haven’t been able to spend much time with them. The negotiations with the Ghibellines—”

“—are going about as smoothly as a shark stranded in the desert. Yeah, yeah, don’t worry about it. They practically worship the ground you walk on anyway, and they can’t wait until summer when you guys bring Nami. Haruka especially—I think your godson’s got a crush on her,”
Haru said, winking.      

Chrome looked at her wryly. “Matchmaking already? Haruka-kun is five and Nami’s barely a year old. I think we can wait a little longer before bringing out the wedding invitations.”

“It’s never too early to start!” Haru declared. She tucked Nami’s photo right into the frame that held Hayate and Haruka’s identical, green-eyed, gray-haired, smiling faces. “See how good they’ll look together! We’d have beautiful grandbabies! We’d be in-laws!”

“I’m not sure how Gokudera-san would take to being in-laws with Kyoya,” Chrome said, her tone dry.

Haru winced. “Oh, yeah. Forgot about that. Hmm. Well, we’ll cross that bridge when we get there.” She sat back in her chair, her eyes going sharp and serious. “Now, what did you come here to talk to me about?”

Chrome’s expression went hard. “I have a plan to provoke the Ghibellines into attacking. I’ve already run it by Kyoko-san; she agrees it would work, and now I want to ask you.”

Haru raised her brow. “Chrome-chan, I’d do anything to take those child-murdering bastards down. What’ve you got for me?”

“The boys won’t like it,” Chrome warned.

“Even better,” Haru replied, grinning.

Chrome took a deep breath. “How would you feel about Gokudera-san and Hibari-san…disappearing for a while?”

Haru blinked. “…together?”

Chrome nodded.

Haru’s eyes widened. “We’re really going to screw the Ghibellines over, aren’t we?”

Chrome gave her a long, steady look. “Yes. Yes, we are.”



Predictably, Tsuna hated the plan.

Kyoko talked to him and convinced him it was the most viable one, the one with the least casualties inflicted all-around.

He eventually agreed.



Predictably, Gokudera hated the plan.

Haru yelled at him for three hours straight, exiled him to the couch, and had their sons write him hate mail.

He ultimately gave in.



Predictably, Kyoya hated the plan.

“I hate Sawada’s dog. I’m not working with him.”

Chrome gave him a measured stare. “Well, you can’t work with me. He’s the right-hand man, you’re our best fighter, and I’m one of two
Vongola Mist Guardians. The plan will only work if we use indispensable people.”

Kyoya growled. “You are not dispensable.”

Chrome smiled, cold and cynical. “I’m a woman. To the Ghibellines, I will always be dispensable, especially since I’ve even failed to give you a
son.”

Kyoya’s eyes narrowed. “…is that what Giorgio Ghibelline said to you at the last meeting?”

“He said it to his right-hand man, but he made sure I could hear it.”

“…fine. We’ll go with your plan. Tell that useless, tamed Storm that I’m the one who gets to kill Giorgio.”

“Done,” Chrome said.

He glared at her petulantly. “Devious woman. You even arranged it so you could go home early.”

Chrome kissed the corner of his pouting mouth. “Be patient,” she said. “It’s just a few weeks.”

He glared at the wall and said nothing in reply.

She sighed, resigned to waiting out his mild temper tantrum, and went to sleep.



A few days later, Gokudera and Kyoya were surveying the Vongolas’ eastern territory together. They were apparently alone and unguarded,
no back-up in sight.

The Ghibellines, possessing more brass than brains, took the bait.

There was a shoot-out. Seventeen Ghibellines died.

Gokudera and Kyoya were captured.

Tsuna had a legitimate reason to declare war solely on the Ghibellines, on his own terms.

Chrome, Haru, and Kyoko toasted to victory.



“Signora, I regret to inform you that your husband is missing and presumed dead,” Dino said, his face solemn but his eyes shining with mirth.
“More champagne?”

Chrome nodded, wordlessly extending her glass towards him.

Bianchi rolled her eyes at her husband’s behavior. “Shouldn’t we be a little less conspicuous celebrating the apparent demise of your best
friend?”

“Nonsense!” Dino said. “Anyone who actually believes that a few dozen henchmen could finish of Kyoya of all people is obviously missing
more than a few brain cells. Besides, shouldn’t you be more torn up about Hayato’s death?”

Bianchi snorted. “Point taken.” She ran a hand through Dino’s golden hair. “Pass me some of that champagne, won’t you, mi caro?”

He did so, and she pressed a lazy kiss to his smiling mouth in reward. Chrome smiled at the sight, remembering how surprising the couple had
been to most of their circle when they’d first started seeing each other. She hadn’t been taken aback, however—never Chrome, with her violet
eye that uncovered secrets as easily as breathing. Something as quietly obvious as a blooming romance between two of her favorite people
—encompassed within low laughter, shy smiles, a hand reaching out to curl around an arm—could never catch her off-guard.

Gokudera-san had been ridiculously explosive over it, though.
“Mama?” a sleepy voice asked, and its owner soon came into view, curly strawberry blond hair spilling over eyes as blue as the sky as a small
fist knuckled his forehead.

“Mi bambino,” Bianchi crooned. “Come say hello to your auntie.”

“Hello, Auntie Chrome,” Filippo Cavallone said obediently as he tucked himself into his mother’s embrace.

“What, no hello for me?” Dino asked, pressing a hand to his heart in feigned pain.

Filippo rolled his eyes in a way identical to his mother. “You live here, Papa. Only guests get hellos.”

“Very well, but I demand a kiss.” Dino proffered his cheek, and the seven-year-old smacked his lips against it before digging into the desserts
on the table.

“You’ve grown, Filippo-kun,” Chrome said admiringly.

Dino sighed. “We know! I could have sworn it was just yesterday that he was learning how to crawl, and now he’s learning how to poison
people using macaroons.”

“It’s an important skill,” Bianchi said archly.

“I’m certain it is,” Chrome said. Filippo offered her a cookie, and she took a small bite out of it.

“You’ve got some nerve, woman,” Dino said, laughing. “But then, you had to have, offering your own husband as bait. Tsuna told me you
came up with that crazy plan.”

Chrome shrugged. “The Ghibellines have never been the most intelligent of people—all we had to do was make it look like they were out on
sloppy reconnaissance, which is technically what they’re doing anyway, since they’re now wreaking havoc all over the Ghibellines’ territory.
That was an unexpected bonus. We were just expecting them to get attacked and perhaps handed over to the Russians, not taken into the
very heart of the enemies’ base of operations.”

“Their fault for falling for it so spectacularly,” Bianchi said. “But Giorgio Ghibelline has always been an idiot, and so was his father before him,
or so says my mother.”

“How is Fidelia-san, by the way?” Chrome asked.

“Doing well. Same with the old goat. At this rate, I’ll never take over as boss of the Falco,” Bianchi replied. Since Gokudera was solidly
determined to stay Tsuna’s right-hand, his sister was declared the heir to their Family.

“And you can stay here at the Cavallone estate and cook me meals and give me beautiful babies, when you’re not out killing people,” Dino
said cheerfully.

“Mama’s good at that,” Filippo said solemnly. “Only the bad ones, though. Reborn would get mad otherwise.”

“I know,” Chrome replied. “She helped teach me when I was younger.”

“Really? How old were you?” he asked.

“Thirteen.”

“Not fair. I’m not allowed to kill anyone until I’m sixteen,” Filippo said, pouting.

Chrome raised her eyebrows.

Dino shrugged in response. “He’s his mother’s boy—what can I say?”

Bianchi snorted. “You’re the one who made Hibari Kyoya his godfather, and you blame me for our son being a bloodthirsty little mafioso?”

“Well, considering you started poisoning your brother when he was six and you were thirteen, yes.”

“That was an accident,” Bianchi hissed.

“Since Uncle Hayato is still alive, Papa,” Filippo helpfully contributed. “If Mama had really wanted to kill him, he’d be dead. But Grandma
wouldn’t have liked that, so he’s not.”

 “Ahahahaha,” Dino said. “Ha. Well, she is a scary woman, so I would’ve done my best to stay on her good side, too.”

“You fathered her first grandchild. She’s never going to have you killed,” Bianchi muttered. She turned her eyes on Chrome. “Speaking of
killing, are you going to help Tsuna clean out the Ghibellines?”

Chrome shook her head. “No. I’m heading back home to Nami. I’ll come back in a few weeks once things have settled down a little, to tie up
any…loose ends.”

Dino blanched a little at the coldness in her voice. Whenever a Mist used those words in that tone, somebody was sure to be on the receiving
end of interrogation that would make death look preferable. He almost felt sorry for the Ghibellines.

Almost.

“Well, we’ll miss you,” Bianchi said. “See you in the summer.”

“See you in the summer,” Chrome echoed.



The second she got home, she’d picked up Nami and simply held her for hours and hours, murmuring her name and “I love you” over and
over.

Her baby was still a little upset that Kyoya hadn’t accompanied her home, though, so Tetsu suggested they take a break, and Chrome
agreed.

She chose the nice little safe house a few miles from the compound, deep in the heart of Namimori, right in the middle of a blandly
inconspicuous street. There, she and Nami simply played house—just her and her baby, no husband, the way she’d always imagined when
she was a little girl.

(Twenty-nine-year-old Chrome, however, missed Kyoya as fiercely as Nami did. How her younger self would have marveled at how not even
holding the physical embodiment of her every dream and hope could quite quench the ache that came from being apart from him.

Though thinking of how jealous he must be, stranded in Italy while she sang lullabies to their daughter, was enough to bring a smile to her
face. Contrary to popular belief, Chrome was the sadist, not the masochist, in their relationship.)

And so it was, that three days after returning from Italy, washing the dishes while Nami was napping and absent-mindedly thinking to herself
that Kyoya ought to be home in a day or two, Chrome was suddenly enveloped in a cloud of mist and—

...

Present Time: Future Chrome

...


—blinks. 

“Oh, no,” she says, staring in horror at a ten-years-younger Gokudera-san. “S-storm man?”

...

Endnote: And that’s chapter four, folks. Thanks for reading!

Now for a few quick notes…

Future Chrome’s timeline began a month or so before the ten-year gap between her and Past Chrome, so if it seems like more time passed in her timeline, it did. Three days after she returned from Italy, however, was exactly ten years from when her past self got shot, so that’s when they switched. So Future Chrome’s bits take place over roughly a month, even though Past Chrome’s bits so far have only taken place over a few days. I hope that makes sense, or at least more sense than the manga (which is not that hard to do, if we’re honest; time-traveling in general is freaking confusing, but KHR time-traveling more so).

Also, I have decided to differentiate between Present Time and Future Time by having Present Time’s verbs set in present tense and Future Time’s verbs…set in past tense. Yeah, okay, I know it’s a little weird, and our tenses for this story have been really inconsistent, but that’s what we’ll go with from now on. We’ll edit the past chapters to reflect this when we have the time. 

I give credit for Bianchi’s maiden name being Falco to Lys ap Adin. Fidelia Falco, however, is my own invention, and someday a GokuHaru story featuring her and explaining her backstory and role in our KHR-verse will be published. Alas, that day is not today.

Lastly, I know technically Bianchi is supposed to be only four years older than Gokudera, but in my own head, she’s seven years older, making her one year younger than Dino, so that they’re of an age.

If you have any more questions, just message us or mention it in your review, and we’ll do our best to answer (we reserve the right not to reveal the plot, however—that’ll be the next chapter, sorry).

Thank you for reading this story, and please review and tell us what you think! :D


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Tags: 1896, character: chrome dokuro, character: hibari kyoya, fanfic, khr
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