Humans. How easily breakable they were. How fragile. Frail. Like every other God, born from their strong belief, their hopes, and wishes, Ryou existed to serve humans. Listen and answer their prayers, be someone they could call in the hardest hour. For that, they worshiped him and praised him. As the God of health Ryou was essential for them. People loved, adored, and respected him. They were loyal, ready to sacrifice everything so the God would hear their voice. And yet. Yet. Ryou never really listened. Their existence was so brief, just one passing moment for someone like he was. They were not worthy of time and patience. Humans were selfish. They would always want more. There would always be something he did wrong. Someone he could save. Why God? Why don't you love me? What did I do wrong? Why didn’t you help? I hate you. I hate. They poured the dirt, only to call him back at the darkest hours again. Once Gods lived between humans, but long even before Ryou’s existence, it was proved that they would never be able to live as equals.
I was glad to come to your shrine.- people also lie. They would tell anything to prove themselves. People disappointed Ryou so many times, he stopped expecting something else from them.
Minami, don’t lie to me… and yet. It hurt. His hands were covered in scratches and wounds, left by Youkais poison. Ryou saw right through it. That human didn’t come to this shrine because he believed in Ryou, he was led here by fear and respect. Ryou couldn’t understand humans. But for some reason, he wanted to understand him. Just a little bit. How he, instead of asking for help, said that he didn’t need anything. How he had one of the most powerful spiritual energy Ryou ever felt coming out from a human, and yet the boy had no clue how to use it. It meant absolutely nothing. That boy had no influence, but somehow it was so natural. Ryou tried to figure out what was so special about him.
Why did the God keep thinking? Why his hands were so warm. Why his soft voice made Ryou want him to keep talking? Why healing the boy, sharing his energy, lifeforce, felt…the right thing to do? Why after seeing his teary eyes, Ryou barely held back from wrapping his arms around the boy. Why… at that moment inside the chest his heart jumped so fast that the God almost thought he could… feel.
It wasn’t fear, but Ryou knew it was wrong. Just in time, he locked himself back, keeping the right distance again, reminding himself that the boy was no different from others. Maybe a little bit too late.
The night was cloudy and windy, and when the coldness ran through Ryou’s spine he suddenly stopped a few steps away from his room. Running away like a coward, leaving the boy there alone with tears in his eyes. Ryou’s jawline tensed, eyes spotted a silhouette in the distance. Even from here, the God heard Minami’s uncertain steps, his heavy breathing as he walked away towards the forest, completely into the wrong direction from the students' quarters. The God waited for the boy to turn back, but the sounds were gone. Ryou didn’t hear him leaving into the woods, so after a moment of observing, the God convinced himself to move forward.
Ryou sat on the tatami, wrapping tails around himself. He made a small gap, sliding the inner wall to the side, so he could follow the direction where the boy disappeared. He lazily spun a long smoking pipe between his fingers, before inhaling it deeply, until his mouth was full of the rich taste of tobacco. Ryou leaned with his head against the edge of the door. He exhaled a heavy cloud of puff, but the hard feeling wouldn’t come off of his shoulders. As the smoke waved around the room, a tiny white dragon who was quietly sleeping until then, suddenly woke up and jumped off the bed. With a joyful growl, he tried to catch the mysterious mist. The God looked at his messenger for a moment before turning eyes back at the night outside. The man’s hair was still a bit moist, loosen, falling down all over his back, shoulders, and chest. He kept thinking about the last words the boy wanted to say, but the God didn’t let him finish. Ryou frowned, trying to push thoughts away, but he kept seeing those scratches on the boy’s hands. It was frustrating. Why was he feeling guilty? He left Minami crying.
Ryou looked up at the sky outside, as he was about to take another puff, there was not a single star tonight, not even a hint of the moonlight. The weather was so cool, that Ryou’s fox ears kept wigging a bit. He should have closed the wall and gone to bed, to get ready for the blessing ceremony tomorrow. That boy wasn’t any of Ryou’s concerns, so why did the man keep looking in the direction the boy went?
“What am I doing…?” Ryou muttered, already going through the path.
The same one the boy took before. Just to make sure he reached his bedroom safely. The God tried to reassure himself that he was just interested to see how different it was from the ones students sleep in.
Ryou felt the boy’s presence even before he saw the old crappy building, at the very edge of the territory. Honestly, he wasn’t even aware of its existence. The God glanced at the forest, eyes for a moment pausing at the old oak tree nearby. There were tracks, oddly dark vibrations interfering with the air. It was definitely Youkai energy. Youkai in his shrine? Ryou’s muscles tensed seeing that there were no protection paper spells on the rope fence. What was the high priest thinking, leaving such an open hole for the darkness to get inside?
Ryou out of habit touched his side, searching for his sword, but as he was wearing only the bathrobe, of course, it wasn’t there. The shady sensation was quite weak, so Ryou was sure there was not any real danger. However, a more worrying fact was that together with the darkness from the building, Ryou also felt Minami’s spiritual energy draining off.
“Minami?” The God called out his name instinctively, but no sound returned back at him.
Even if Ryou doesn't have the best impression about humans, Minami for some reason took a special place in the God's emotionless heart. Smoking is bad, children btw, so don't. Ryou is a God, so he is immortal. It's okay for him.
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**ILLUSTRATED** God's Youkai - Kami no Youkai - KNY
A story about hope that lasted until the last moment.
About love that had no limits.
The dark who was bright
....and the light who fell into despair.
Tags: M/M, Fantasy, Angst, Depictions Of Violence, Gods, Demons, Ancient Japan, Supernatural, Slow burn
Updates every Sunday!
Link to God’s Youkai short comic series: https://tapas.io/series/Gods-Youkai-short-comics/info
Minami believed that everyone in this life had their place. Gods who gave people hope by granting their deepest prayers and wishes. Those who protected them from the darkness - Youkais - monsters, born from angry and desperate spirits that once were human. The balance between the greatest enemies, Gods and Youkais, and their eternal fight kept this world going. But Minami, the boy that was believed to be cursed from the day he was born and was known as someone who only brings misfortune, couldn’t fit in either of those worlds. Until the day he realized that his home was not certainly a place.
In this alternative ancient Japan, where love between humans and Gods is irrational and unacceptable. Where greatest spiritual energy comes from someone, who is losing their last hope. A bond that no existing power could change - the blue fire in the God’s eyes - met their destiny.