This is the last chapter. Drowning was my favorite story to write, and I'm kind of sad that it has to end. As usual, I have two stories lined up to be posted next. Let me know what you think of this chapter and the overall story!

~I was drowning~

"Hey, what's wrong?" Izaya looked down at the boy, who was on his side, curled up lying across Izaya's lap and playing with his fingers.

"Nothing. I'm fine."

"There's something wrong; I can tell. Does it have anything to do with what happened at the mall?" He sighed when Masaomi tensed. He idly twirled the boy's hair between his fingers. "Don't think about that man anymore. You're with me, now and always."

"It's not that," Masaomi said quietly. "It's what he said about tearing apart families. Multiple times, I woke up to a girl screaming at her boyfriend, asking why I was naked in his bed, or watched while the guy grinding against me was slapped by the girl he came with to the party. I just tear apart people's relationships."

"That's not true. You had no idea—"

"Yes, I did—for most of them, anyway. I was told that I had to leave early before the guy's girlfriend got there and intentionally sought out guys I saw coming to parties with someone else. I thought it was fun to watch someone else's relationship fall apart because someone had lusted after me."

Izaya rubbed Masaomi's hip. "So what? You were having a bit of fun because you were unhappy with your life. It's generally a bad idea to seduce someone in a committed relationship, but I can appreciate doing it to see the reaction. That's what I do, after all, just not through sexual means."

Masaomi grinned. "By your standards, I don't think there's many things I could say about myself or what I've done that would make you think I'm a bad person."

Izaya pinched Masaomi's skin. "How rude of you to say."

The boy rolled his eyes, and then sat up, straddling his lover's lap. "Hey, let's get naked and do something fun," he said playfully.

Izaya shot him a wicked grin. "That's a fantastic idea."

"Ryugamine-kun, I'm busy at the moment. Do you mind coming back later?" He shifted slightly from his spot on the couch.

"It's really important. Please, Orihara-san, it'll only take a moment."

Izaya sighed. "Very well. What do you want to know?"

"Do you know the leader of the Yellow Scarves?"

The informant chuckled. "Know him? I'd say that, yes. After all, I've been sleeping with him for quite some time now." He could feel Masaomi glaring at him. "He's taking an…extended leave from leading them, though."

"Oh, um… Can you tell me who he is?"

"Normally I would not disclose this information to you, especially in this situation, but he would benefit from closure. The one you're looking for is beneath me."


"I mean, I'm on top of him right now. You walked in on us—though, it is partially my fault for leaving the door unlocked." He gazed down into anxious, honey-colored eyes. "Would you like to see whom it is?"

"Well, yes."

"All ri—" A forceful hand grabbed a chunk of his hair and tugged him down.

"Izaya-san, I don't think I'm ready for this," Masaomi whispered.

"You're ready. Trust me." He gave the boy a lengthy kiss, and then sat up. He offered the boy a hand and pulled Masaomi into a sitting position.

Mikado's eyes widened. "K-Kida? You're the leader of the Yellow Scarves?"

"You're head of the Dollars."

"Yeah, but that's different."


"Your gang…hurts people."

Kida's eyebrows rose. "What are you saying?"

"Well, maybe you should disband them."

"Why? So your gang can grow stronger? Get the fuck out of here."


"Didn't you hear me? Get out. We were having sex when you walked in, and I'd like to continue before his dick gets soft from the sight of you. Leave." He lay down again, pulling the man with him. "Put it in."

Izaya obeyed, and they both groaned quietly. The informant picked up a rhythm, hitting the boy's prostate with each thrust.


Without looking away from Masaomi, he thrusted at a quicker pace and spoke. "Ryugamine-kun, I'm sure it's arousing to hear your old friend make erotic noises, but you've overstayed your welcome. If you want to watch two men fuck, google some gay porn."

"Y-You aren't really…doing that, are you?"

With a loud sigh, Izaya sat up, pulling the boy onto his lap, and locked him in a kiss. Masaomi moaned as he rocked and bounced, completely ignoring Mikado. Izaya used his foot to pick up Kida's boxers from the floor. He grabbed them, and then held them in the air.

"Is this enough to satisfy your imagination, Ryugamine-kun?"

Mikado looked at them with a horrified expression. "But…Kida isn't…gay."

"I didn't say that he's gay. However, it's been heavily implied that Masaomi is greatly enjoying sodomy at the moment." He smiled childishly at Masaomi. "You're enjoying this very much, aren't you?"

Kida stopped moving and tried to catch his breath. He smiled back at Izaya with a similar expression and rested his forehead against the man's, closing his eyes. "Yes, I love this. It feels so good." He cleared his throat and glared at his former best friend. "Mikado, get out. Go away and let me have sex with my boyfriend in peace."

After shaking his head, the Dollars' leader scurried out of the apartment.

"Boyfriend? I don't remember agreeing to take on that title."

Masaomi fell onto his back, pulling Izaya down once again. "I just said it to make him more uncomfortable—and get him out quicker. He's a homophobe."

"And he never suspected that you're gay?"

"Bisexual." He punched Izaya's arm. "If he did, I'm sure he brushed the idea off as crazy. I thought that I might be able to ease him into it, but he doesn't understand—and I doubt he ever will."

"Well, my dearest boyfriend, don't waste your time on people who can't accept whom you are."

"Don't call me that," Masaomi barked. "I wasn't being serious when I said it."

"Maybe I'm being serious. The word holds intimacy, yes? At this point, I believe you're more than my casual sex friend."

"You're ridiculous," Masaomi scoffed. "Shut up and fuck me."

"Not with that tone."

"Izaya-san, darling, make love to me," he said, his voice dripping with sarcasm.

Izaya didn't seem to care about his tone. "As you wish, sweetheart." He resumed their previous activity with enthusiasm.

It wasn't long before Masaomi finished, crying out his lover's name. Izaya finished soon after, immediately pulling out to throw away their condoms. When he returned, Masaomi had slipped on his boxers and was sitting up on the couch. Izaya scooped the boy up without a word and carried him to the bedroom. He placed his lover beneath the sheets of his bed and crawled in next to him.

"You know, it might—"


Izaya pouted and drew the boy close. "You didn't even let me finish. I—"

"No," Masaomi said firmly. "Bastard..."

Izaya stroked the boy's hair. "Do you like me, Masaomi-kun?"

"In what sense? Romantically? As a sexual partner?"

"I mean, do you enjoy spending time with me? Do you like me as a person?"

"I think you're a cruel, cold, and self-absorbed person." He paused. "Despite the horrid things you do to people, yes, I like you, Izaya-san. Since I've…returned, you've treated me differently. You don't make fun of me—severely—or play games." Masaomi turned his head and pressed his forehead against the man's arm. Izaya took the hint, and began to brush through his hair. "Honestly, I like you more than I'd prefer to admit. I've accepted it, though, because I'm fairly certain that you feel the same way. You've become attached to me in a way that makes you uncomfortable. I don't occupy your thoughts all the time, so you aren't too concerned about it, but you don't know the outcome of us, or even what 'us' implies. You can be three steps ahead of me, but you struggle to keep stride with our relationship. I'll stop talking about it now, because I can feel how tense you are, but I just want to tell you I understand that you feel something for me, and that's all I need to know to be content with you."

Izaya rolled onto his back on the bed and pulled the boy towards him as he collected his thoughts, trying to figure how to reply. "Thank you for understanding, Masaomi-kun."

"You're welcome. Now, let's sleep; you really wore me out today."

"I didn't agree to ending our conversation."

Masaomi frowned, disliking how the way Izaya worded his sentence made it sound like a demand. Nevertheless, he complied. "Okay…"

"It's not a good idea to analyze me, Masaomi-kun—it will lead you nowhere." Izaya gave no further explanation, and Masaomi realized that he was merely supposed to agree.

"I understand."

The informant smiled softly and stroked Masaomi's head. "Why do you sporadically refuse my advances, in sexual and nonsexual manners?"

Masaomi had noticed his tendency to occasionally act as if he didn't want Izaya. He, himself, wasn't exactly certain why he exhibited this behavior. Izaya meant everything to him, yet he would not discuss furthering their relationship, sometimes pushed him away when he wanted to give physical affection, and dismissed his compliments and things said to woo him. He was so deeply enamored with the man, but he passed up on chances to have more of him. "I…don't know."

But he had an idea. Each moment he spent with Izaya was a moment that Izaya could spend doing important work or spending time peacefully alone. He was taking up the man's precious time, and the more often he did that, he feared that he'd come closer to the day where Izaya decided that he was a nuisance, and no longer of use to the informant. He kept his fears to himself, not wanting to seem pathetic and needy. After all, he belonged to Izaya, but Izaya did not belong to him.

"I think you're lying to me," Izaya said casually, with no trace of any negative emotion in his voice.

Masaomi was silent for a few seconds, hiding his face in Izaya's chest as he tried to figure out how to respond. After awhile, he smiled. "Yes, I am. I don't want to tell you the reason, though. No good would come of you knowing it. It's better to not say it aloud."

"I see… Well, I'm too tired to manipulate you into telling me, and I don't see the matter to be of dire importance, so I'll leave it alone for now."

Masaomi's smile grew. "Thank you, Izaya-san."

"You're welcome. Now we may sleep. Sweet dreams, Masaomi-kun."

Masaomi snuggled against his lover and shut his eyes. "Sweet dreams, Izaya-san."

As he often did, Masaomi woke up alone in Izaya's bed. He reached over to his side, as if confirming that nobody was there, and sighed when his hand was met with pulled-up sheets. A soft grin grew on his face as he thought about another one of Izaya's quirks: making his bed every morning, even if Masaomi was in it. He wasn't sure if he was supposed to make the bed after getting out of it, but he always did, anyway, just in case. He reluctantly left the warmth of Izaya's bed to brush his teeth—with a toothbrush he kept there—took a quick shower, and dressed in his usual outfit of jeans and a white sweatshirt—which was also at Izaya's for occasions when he spent the night. He found it rather ironic that despite his protests about living with the informant, he often slept over multiple times a week, and kept his own clothing and hygienic products in the luxurious apartment.

After looking at himself in the mirror, he walked downstairs. When he saw Izaya at his desk, as usual, he slowly strode towards the man, smiling when arms were extended out to him. He happily accepted the invitation, sitting down between Izaya's legs and leaning back against his chest, resting his forehead against the informant's neck and sighing contently. "Why are you never in bed with me when I wake up? It's not even nine o'clock yet."

Izaya wrapped his arms around the boy's waist. "I usually wake up around seven. Tomorrow I can sleep in so I'll be there when you wake up, if you'd like me to."

Masaomi placed hand over Izaya's. "Only if it's not bothersome. I don't want to get in the way of your work or disrupt your morning routine."

Izaya kissed Masaomi's temple. "It's not bothersome. I don't mind."

The blond smiled softly. "Then, yes, I'd really like to wake up beside you."

Izaya bent his head and nudged Masaomi's cheek with his nose. "Trust me more."

"What do you mean? I trust you."

"Not in all the areas I'd like you to trust me in, though."

Masaomi furrowed his brows. "Are you saying that I already know that and need to fix it, or are you going to make me aware of the problem?"

Izaya didn't directly answer the question. "You think that I'm lying when I tell you that you can request things from me, so you don't, and also that I'm humoring you by telling you that I don't see your presence as bothersome. I like having you around, and I'd tell you if I needed a break from you, but you won't accept that. Why not?"

Masaomi shrugged. Despite there not being much room on the chair, he pulled his feet up to hug his legs against his chest. "It's just hard to believe that someone as amazing as you wants to spend time with some depressed, clingy teenager. I mean, you're Orihara Izaya, one of the greatest informants and most dangerous men in Tokyo. I have nothing to offer you, yet I'm here on your lap after staying the night in your bed."

Izaya combed through Masaomi's hair with his fingers. "You have lots to offer me. If nothing else, you shouldn't be rejecting that you're here for me to have sex with. There are other reasons, though. You're intelligent, loyal, and easily pleased. I like having conversations with you, as well as having you at my disposal for various tasks. You don't really refuse me, and you enjoy obeying me, so there's not much about having you around that could bother me."

Masaomi smiled, somewhat believing him, but still not entirely. "Okay."

"Do you mind running some errands for me?" Izaya handed the boy a list and a credit card. "I have an appointment in a bit. It should be over by the time you return."

Masaomi nodded energetically, happy to help out Izaya. He pecked the man on the lips and smiled brightly. "I'll do my best."

Masaomi blinked, trying to comprehend what he was looking at. It couldn't possibly be what he was thinking. That couldn't happen.

"Masaomi-kun, I can explain this."

The boy continued to stare in disbelief, barely hearing Izaya's words. He opened his mouth to speak, but no words came out, so he shut it again. "Izaya-san…?" There was a girl straddling the informant's lap. When Masaomi had walked into the apartment, Izaya's hands had been beneath on her hip and under her bra, which was visible since her blouse was unbuttoned; the girl's hands had been in his hair and somewhere Masaomi couldn't see; Izaya's mouth had been very close to a purple spot on her neck, as if he was sucking there; the girl had been bouncing on his lap, moaning. But none of that could be true. Izaya only wanted to sleep with Masaomi. He laughed wholeheartedly, smiling at the man, who had just shoved the girl off him and zipped his pants to stand up and walk towards his lover. He set down the bags he'd gotten from running errands for his lover. "Man, that looked really weird. It looked like you guys were having sex. That's impossible, though; you said you only want to be intimate with me—forever." A few tears rolled down his cheeks, but he kept smiling. "I'm sure it's not what it seemed like. You'd never touch someone else. I belong to you; you don't need to look for intimacy from someone else because you can get it from me whenever you want it."

Izaya looked at the boy with sad eyes. He moved forward and grabbed his hand, soothingly rubbing it with his thumb. "Masaomi-kun, I'm just using her to get informa—"

"Wait," the girl interrupted. "You're sleeping with him, but were going to hook up with me? You didn't tell me you were dating someone."

Izaya glared at her. "Shut up, brat. I'm not dating him. He's…" He looked at the boy for a few seconds. "He's just a very close friend that I often sleep with."

Masaomi's trance faded, and he looked at Izaya questioningly, pain in his expression. "'Hook up'? 'A very close friend'?" Masaomi stared at the red, lacy panties on the ground, blinking away his tears—not too successfully. He felt like an idiot. He belonged to Izaya, but Izaya didn't belong to him. They weren't in any kind of relationship; it was only expected for him to sleep with other people. He self-consciously pulled on his jacket and looked up, avoiding Izaya's eyes. "I should've asked if your…appointment was over before returning. I'm sorry for interrupting." He bowed to each of them. "I'll be going now." He briskly walked out of the apartment, and then ran out of the building and to his house, first vomiting outside of Izaya's building. Masaomi somehow managed to hold himself together until he brushed his teeth and collapsed onto his bed.

Masaomi sobbed and screamed into his pillow. He lifted his head when he became dizzy from a lack of air, and lay on his side, staring at the wall with a listless expression. He felt like an idiot for thinking that Izaya would only sleep with him. Of course it didn't go both ways; Izaya did whatever he wanted, and Masaomi was a disposable toy for him to play with. He started crying again as he realized that he would run back to Izaya as soon as he was called upon. Being the informant's plaything was actually something he greatly enjoyed. No matter what they were doing, Masaomi was simply happy to be near him, and he'd give up anything to be with him—his pride, body, possessions, mind—absolutely anything. He was in so deep, far too deep to even consider trying to get away and live a life without the man.

I'm in love with him. Masaomi had known that for a few months. He'd considered telling Izaya, but he didn't want to seem too clingy. Especially now, he was glad that he didn't confess his true feelings.

A fear returned to him—he was holding Izaya back. His body started to tremble. He was annoying Izaya by constantly being around him and showering him with unwanted affection. All of his fears swirled around in his head, but his desperate attempts to soothe himself weren't working. He looked at his closet, where he kept a bottle of wine, and then his nightstand, where he kept a large jar of pain medication. He sat up to figure out which to go for, when he suddenly realized that his indecisiveness was due to him not wanting either.

Masaomi reached for his cellphone, scrolling down to the contact he desperately wanted to call. But what would he say? He was upset because he was bothering Izaya; calling him would merely bother him further. He flipped his phone shut and returned it to the nightstand. As he opened the drawer, something shiny caught his eye, and he stared at it for a long while before finally taking it out and placing it on top of the nightstand. He stared at it again, reaching for it multiple times, but never actually picking hit up. After a few minutes, he finally grabbed the object. A few tears left him as he took out a pencil and a sheet of paper. By the time his cheeks were stained with tears, he had finished what he meant to do. He grabbed his cell phone, took a deep breath, and smiled.

"Masaomi-kun, I'm so sorry about earlier. Please let me explain." He walked around the city, checking the places Masaomi frequented.

"There's nothing to be explained; you're allowed to sleep with whomever you want. I just… I want to hear your voice one more time."

Izaya slowed his stride. "'One more time'? What do you mean, Masaomi?"

"I love listening to you talk. I want your voice to be the last thing I hear."

Izaya's stomach flipped over. "Where are you right now?"

"At my place, but—"

Izaya took off at a sprint, pushing people out of his way. He flew around corners, not looking before crossing streets, opting for dodging or jumping over any cars in his path. "I'll be right there. Stay on the phone with me."

"Don't rush. It's not like I'm going anywhere—my body isn't, at least."

"Tell me what's going on. Did you swallow pills?"

"I cut my wrists."

"Both of them?"


"Shit… How long ago?"

"Right before I called you. I had to put you on speakerphone because I'm not strong enough to hold the phone up."

"Can you reach anything to tie over your wrists? A towel or a piece of clothing?"

"I don't want the bleeding to stop, Izaya-san."

"I—" The informant was yanked back by the hood of his jacket. He was spun around, and his attacker held his free wrist and the collar of his shirt.

"Hey there, Izaya-kun. It seems that I've finally caught you."

"No," he breathed. "You can kill me any other time, Shizu-chan, but not now. Let me go. Please."

Shizuo raised an eyebrow. "Give me one good reason I shouldn't crush all of your bones right now."

"Izaya-san? Are you still there? You don't have to keep talking to me. I don't want to be annoying—any more than I already am, anyway."

Izaya looked at the blond man as he spoke. "I'm still here, and you're not annoying me. I'm almost there. I need you to tie something around your wrists."

"But I—"

"Masaomi-kun, please do as I say. After I fix you up, we can do whatever you want. We can go on a vacation or you could move in with me. We could even move away together." Izaya's voice lowered. "Please don't do this. I don't want you to die, Masaomi."

Hearing the last sentence, Shizuo let go of the man. Izaya nodded his thanks and started running again.

"I've already made my decision."

The informant ended the call and returned the phone to his pocket. A few minutes later, he opened the door to Kida's apartment and dashed into the bathroom. He grabbed a towel and ripped it into two pieces as he rushed into the bedroom. He crouched in front of Masaomi, who was leaning against the wall.

"Izaya-san… You aren't supposed to be here yet. I left a note for you because you were supposed to find me afterwards." He smiled. "But I'm glad I get to see you again."

The informant knelt beside the small pool of blood and delicately wrapped one of the teen's wrists.

"Don't do that. I want—"

Izaya looked at him, wild eyed. "I know you want to die. But I don't want you to die. I don't care if you want to end your life—I won't let you." He tied the other wrist and called an ambulance.

Kida's eyes were nearly closed. "Will you read my note?"

"There's no need for me to read it. You can tell me what it says at the hospital."

"But I won't make it to the hospital. Please take it."

Izaya grabbed the piece of paper on the dresser and shoved it into his back pocket. "I'll take it with me, all right? But you aren't going to die." He leaned forward and pressed their foreheads together. "Masaomi… I was only with that girl to get very valuable information from her; I didn't think of the effect it would have on you. I'm so sorry."

The boy frowned. "No, it wasn't because of you, Izaya-san. Don't think that."

Izaya pulled back and looked at him with unshed tears in his eyes. "You were so happy just the other day. If this isn't because of what happened earlier, what else could it be? I messed up; I'm so sorry."

Masaomi shook his head, looking at the informant with a pained expression. "Please don't be sad. You didn't cause this. Please don't think you did this. Please."

Seeing the boy's expression, he kissed Kida's cheek. "Okay, I won't think it's my fault."

"I'm sorry to ask so much of you, but will you kiss me? Just once more."

"I'll kiss you whenever you want me to." The informant cupped the boy's face in his hand and kissed him, guiding Kida's weak lips. "I love you, Masaomi. I love you." He tasted salty tears and felt lips smiling against his.


Kida's lips stopped moving. Izaya pulled away. Masaomi's eyes were shut; his body was still; his chest wasn't rising and falling as it should be. He picked the boy up and hastily carried him out of the apartment, where the ambulance had just parked.

Izaya sat in the E.R. waiting room, impatiently tapping his foot, barely holding himself together. Nearly everyone in the crowded room recognized him. Whispers and gasps had begun the moment he sat down. He wanted to scream at them, to tell them to shut up and let him think. After a while, he picked up his phone and looked through his messages as a distraction. When he came across a text that Masaomi had sent him, he curled in on himself and hid his face in his hands, biting his quivering lip to keep from crying. Orihara Izaya did not cry, under any circumstances—especially with so many people staring at him. He stayed like that for a while until he realized that his action had caused people to whisper louder and move closer.

He composed himself and returned to a normal sitting position. One person was seat hopping far too close to him. He stared at the ceiling and took a breath. "If you get any closer, I will cut off your ear." Once the man moved away, he cleared his throat loudly and raised his voice just enough for the majority of the people to hear him. "My precious humans, I am here for the same reason as all of you. I am not in a good mood right now, and it's a very bad idea to continue with this shallow, pathetic behavior. If you have any sort of conscience, you will quit whispering about a distraught man you've heard rumors about, and start worrying about the condition of your loved ones." He scanned the crowd. "Don't provoke me."

He had been sitting there for a little under an hour. The whispering had mostly stopped, and he was only given a quick look every so often. Because of the long wait, he figured that meant they were merely stitching up Masaomi, but he'd lost a lot of blood. There was a possibility…

He bolted to his feet when a doctor approached him.

"How is he? Can I see him?"

The informant's eyes widened as the doctor answered. He fell back into his seat, unable to stand anymore. He spoke in a hushed tone, not wanting to disclose his personal business to anyone. "You're speaking about Kida Masaomi?"

"I am. Are you his legal guardian? I need you to sign a few forms."

"No," he said quietly.


Izaya narrowed his eyes. "Do you need me at this moment? You can't wait?"

"Well… I suppose we can hold off on the paperwork for now."

"I'll contact the front desk when I'm ready. I have some things to take care of first." Once the man had left, he pulled the note Masaomi had written out of his back pocket. Taking a deep breath, he opened it and read the contents.


I'm sorry it had to end like this, but I couldn't go on any longer. I was drowning. I was drowning in the alcohol, in the memories, and in you. I was fighting a losing battle from the start, and there was nothing you could've done to stop the inevitable. I know it's hard to understand—even I didn't understand it completely. That was the problem. I was trying to make sense of my feelings, but there was no making sense of them. Most of the time, I wasn't sad—I was numb. I wasn't feeling anything, and that was terrifying. I couldn't go on not having emotions. I hadn't been myself for months, because that wasn't me out there. The person desperately trying to feel something, anything, and faking it when he couldn't, wasn't me. I only wish I could've gotten to you sooner, and you'd have been able to be with who I really was. I'm sorry for wasting all of your time on a lost cause. I wish I had pretended to be okay instead of bothering you with my problems. Honestly, I'm not sure how you put up with me. I'm just glad that you won't have to be burdened by me anymore, and I thank you for pretending that I wasn't a burden.

Thank you for making my last few months worth living. I know this sounds cliché—this entire letter is—but this wasn't your fault; you didn't drive me into doing this—I did. I was holding everything in for so long that when I finally broke down, I couldn't handle it. I got what I wanted. I was able to feel again. But the feeling was pain, and it was unbearable. My mind went in rapid circles of recalling my past mistakes and envisioning future ones. Because, in the end, I never let go, not really. I couldn't let go, no matter how hard I tried. There were stretches of time when I forgot, but the memories always came back. I couldn't live like that anymore. I couldn't live the rest of my life alternating between apathy and agony. I wasn't strong enough to fight through it. A lot of the time, I went to bed hoping I wouldn't wake up. The only reason I survived so long was because you were around. I finally realized that we were just stalling what couldn't be stopped, and my problems holding you back were hurting both of us.

I didn't want you to know while I was clinging onto you, but I'm glad that I can now admit that I loved you. I loved you from the moment you asked me to be yours. I had never felt so strongly about someone, and it was thrilling. My happiest memories were made when I was with you. No matter what we were doing, no matter how you felt about me, I treasured every moment I had with you. You said that you believe in some kind of an afterlife. If it's real, I hope we can meet there; we'll start over and fall in love, like we should've. Until then, I hope that you don't change. Be happy. I want you to always be happy.

Thank you, for everything.