It's slow, like the ebb of a rising tide.

She's different. He'd come to learn that most humans are, if you let them. But she is different in a way that makes his heart beat quicker, that makes his palms sweat and his mouth dry and his legs feel like jelly. She is different in a way that makes him question everything, in a way that makes him want to be better. Her different is loud and imposing and overwhelming and completely, utterly addictive.

It hurts in a way he doesn't understand, but he likes it. He wants more and more, wants to keep her close, keep her safe. She's so fragile. Everytime he sees her, he's reminded.

She is so very human and so very vulnerable. Her body is tissue paper and glass but she is still one the strongest people Yato has ever known. Still his favorite.

It's slow, like sinking into quicksand, something bottomless and suffocating shared between them. By the time Yato realizes, it's already too late.

It's the weekend but Hiyori is still nose deep in a textbook, an old one, though she keeps them so pristine that it's hard to tell. Next to her, Yukine listens intently as she reads. Yato listens too, but without hearing the words, only the lilt of her voice, smooth and sweet like golden honey.

He watches her lips, the way they curl around each word, the way they move. They are pale and pink and beautiful and Yato wonders if they'd be soft to touch.

She looks up from her book when she notices him. For a second he thinks she's going to scold him for staring, but instead she just shakes her head and those lips turn up in a smile and Yato feels himself melt.

They're walking back from a job and the sun has just set. The city is settling in for night and the air grows stagnant with abandonment.

In front, Yukine gripes about something innocuous and mundane, beside him, Hiyori nuzzles deeper into her scarf. Yato tucks his hands away against the cold, and wishes the walk home was longer, despite the temperature.

Hiyori laughs at something Yukine says and responds in kind, and Yato smiles, basking in the ordinariness the day has taken on. Still speaking with Yukine, Hiyori slips one hand into Yato's pocket, twining her fingers with his.

Yato gives her hand a gentle squeeze, staring straight ahead as they walk, their connection tucked away like a precious secret, even as Hiyori runs her thumb over his palm in warm little circles.

If anyone mentions his blush, he decides to blame it on the cold.

Hiyori is very good at hiding her emotions. She's perfected her poker face, and it irks Yato to no end. But no matter how hard she tries to hide it, her eyes give her away. Yato has seen anger and sadness and embarrassment swelling in them, but today he sees something new.

Hiyori looks at him with something akin to longing in her eyes, and Yato is sure he looks back in the very same way.

She had spent her day chasing after him again, and her feet are calloused and sore. He pulls them up onto his lap, kneads his thumb into the arches and watches as she throws her head back and groans at the sensation. He smiles.

"You really are a wish granter, aren't you?" Hiyori says, looking at him through the fan of her lashes.

"This isn't a wish," Yato says, "There are rules for wishes."

Hiyori gives him a wry smile, "And what are these rules?"

"Well, you have to actually say it. Out loud," Yato says, thinking, his hands pause, curled around her toes, "And you have to pay the five yen. And it has to be good. It has to be something worth wishing for."

"Like what?"

Yato looks away, suddenly bashful, "Like, I wish Hiyori and I could be together forever," he

murmurs. He tries to will away his blush.

Silence stretches between them and Yato fears that he's said too much, but then Hiyori has her hand in front of his nose, palm open and waiting. Yato raises a brow.

"Payment," Hiyori says. She wiggles her fingers, but instead of dropping a coin there he presses his lips to her palm, bright eyes boring into her's.

Hiyori considers the debt squared anyway.

He holds her tighter, closer, just to prove he can. He tucks his head against her chest, listens to the steady beat of her heart, and knows that she is real and she is alive and she is here.

He scrapes his teeth against her neck. It's pitch black but Yato doesn't need the light. He can touch and taste and feel her, trembling beneath him.

She squirms when his hands brush against her breasts, teasing and fleeting, and she shoves at him in annoyance. His lips come away, leaving spit cooling on her skin. He knows she'll have a mark there in the morning.

He reaches down between them, searching and finding and loving, and he relishes in her breathless little keening moans as she clutches at his bare skin. She's the one coming unhinged but he still feels powerless in her presence.

They both moan as Hiyori learns what it means to be lover to a god and Yato learn that she is warm, lovely velvet, inside and out.

He moves, gauging and testing, and he kisses with all of himself. The way their lips move against each other exposes more than the nakedness, and Yato feels both vulnerable and liberated with the sensation.

There is no space between them, no room to breath or hesitate. It is the crushing weight of a black hole, endless and infinite, and she is everything, beneath him. She is molecules and a matrix of genes. She is human, is skin and bones and heart and soul. She is strength and grit and mercy, a million years of stars and planets and everything, everything else. She is a universe, a thousand little pieces thrumming beneath his fingertips and when she falls apart in his arms he squeezes tight enough to hold her together. For once, Yato truly feels like the god of something.

And Hiyori holds him just as tight.

AN: So I learned a new word. Synergy is basically when several things come together to create something that is worth more than each individual part. I wanted to write something kinder than what I last wrote for this pairing, so here we are. Thank you so much for reading! Please review if you have the time!