A Promise of Protection

Disclaimer: I do not own Love Hina.

It's a rainy night in Tokyo. Keitaro is wondering the streets aimlessly, wondering if things will ever be right between him and Naru.

*Flashback of the events that took place prior*

Naru and Keitaro and studying as usual, when.

Naru: I am so tired and it's not even 9:30pm yet! *yawn* I should really stop pulling all niters.

Keitaro looks up from his books.

Keitaro: Did you want some coffee?

Naru: Sure! That would sure hit the spot!

Keitaro: Oh, ok!

Keitaro gets up to get some coffee for he and Naru, but his leg catches one of the legs of the table and he stumbles over, one hand landing on the carpet, the other on something soft and warm. He looks up to see what it was, and it just happens to be Naru's left breast. Seeing the anger rise up in her face Keitaro quickly attempts to apologize before yet another thrashing.

Keitaro: Na- Na- Naru! I am so, so sorry! I didn't mean-

Naru, ignoring his apology, begins to ball up her fist.

Naru: Why you... You disgusting little lecherous pervert!!! I'll beat the living crap outta you for this!

Naru raises her arm and punches Keitaro so hard; it sends him flying into the other room, and smack into a wall.

Naru: That'll teach you! I can't believe how perverted you act! It's pathetic! I try to help you study for the entrance exams and all you do is act like a total jerk! You're a loser! A pathetic third year ronin who will never amount to anything! Oooo! I hate you!

With that Naru storms out of the room, slamming Keitaro's door behind her. Keitaro however has not moved, he still remains, leaning against the wall of his room, slumped over in a deep depression.

Keitaro: Maybe Naru and the others would be a lot better off without me around. I can never go one day without something bad happening. What's more is they never listen to me! If they would I would get punched a lot less. I need some air.

With that, Keitaro gets up and leaves his room, not noticing that he is bleeding from the concussion that he had just received from Naru.

*End of Flashback*

Keitaro, now sitting on a bench, watches the ongoing traffic. Once again, he has forgotten an umbrella and is already drenched in rain. Still watching the traffic his vision becomes hazy.

Keitaro: Huh? That's odd, I can barely see.

Keitaro goes to scratch his head in bewilderment, but stops because it's sore. He pulls his hand around to look at it and it has blood on it, somewhat diluted in color due to the rain.

Keitaro: Blood? I'm bleeding? Man Naru really socked me good. She must really be mad. But then again, I suppose I deserve it.

Keitaro takes a deep breath and leans back on the bench, letting the rain fall onto his face freely, when he catches a glimpse of a familiar looking figure across the street. He sits up and squints, trying to make her out. Suddenly he realizes her; the long hair gives her away. 'It's Naru!' Keitaro thinks to himself. As a reflex he gets up, ready to run to her, then has a flashback of the prior events and sits back down; back to his sulky posture.

Keitaro: What am I thinking? She just knocked me senseless for being a pervert! I'm probably the last person she wants to see right now.

But Keitaro can't bring himself to take his eyes off of her. Dressed in a skirt and blouse, with her usual thigh high stockings, and a hat to match, she has stopped to get a chocolate covered banana from a nearby stand, still sheltered by her umbrella.

Keitaro: She's always prepared. heh.

Keitaro laughs to himself and still continues to watch Naru. She has begun to walk down the street, munching on her banana. Just then a gust of wind blows, sending a chill through Keitaro, and blowing Naru's hat off and into the busy street. Naru, as a natural reflex, starts chasing the hat until it stops in the midst of the traffic. She bends to pick it up. But little does she notice, there is a speeding car coming down the street. Keitaro notices this and starts yelling to Naru.

Keitaro: Naru!!! Hey Naru!!! Look out! There's a car coming! Get out of the street!!!

Naru looks up from her hat and in the direction of the voice. Keitaro notices Naru isn't wearing her glasses, add that with the rainfall, and she has zero visibility.

Naru: What?! Keitaro, is that you?

Keitaro looks at Naru then up the road, the car is too close for comfort, it's about to hit Naru. Without thinking, Keitaro darts out into the street; he has just enough time to push Naru to the side before the car crashes into him, sending him flying onto the hood, then onto the windshield breaking it with the force into pieces, then onto the roof of the car and off the back, finally landing with a bone crushing thud onto the pavement. The car that hit him comes to a screeching halt, and the driver stumbles out of the car, clearly drunk, and over to the lifeless mass lying on the ground known as Keitaro.
Naru, disoriented from Keitaro's sudden push, sits up.

Naru: What the hell just happened? And where is Keitaro? I know I heard his voice.

Naru reaches into her pocket on her skirt and removes her glasses. She puts them on and looks around. There are a group of people surround something or someone, but there is no Keitaro. Quickly she stands up and goes over to the people. She pokes an older man on the outskirts of the formed group.

Naru: Excuse me sir but what are all of you looking at? Did someone get hurt? Is that why I heard that car screech?

Old Man: I can't believe you didn't see that. It was you that young fella saved Miss.

Naru: Huh? What are you talking about- Wait- you don't mean- You can't possibly mean. No!

Naru, quickly realizing that the person who pushed her was Keitaro, wades her way through the collection of people. Only to be met with her worse fear. She gasps, her eyes widening with fear. There, lying on the ground is a lifeless, bleeding Keitaro. She then runs to his side and kneels down beside him. He is lying on his back, his glasses? Nowhere to be found. There is a puddle of blood behind his head. He has cuts on his eyebrow and cheek. Bruises everywhere, countless lacerations on his chest that are bleeding through his blood soaked and torn shirt. There is a look of solitude on his face. One that scares her into thinking the worse.
Quickly, she presses her fingers to his neck; he has a weak pulse that
seems to be alternating between stopping and starting. Then she kneels
down beside him and places her ear over his nose and mouth. He is
breathing, but they are shallow, uneven breaths that do not promise
continuance. She begins to cry.

Naru: Keitaro! Keitaro! Open your eyes! Don't do this to me you idiot!
Don't you dare die on me you loser! Someone call an ambulance!!!

She shakes his arm slightly.

Naru: Don't do this! Open your eyes!

She bends down to him, burying her face into his shoulder. She begins
to cry uncontrollably.

Keitaro: It's.its true, you know.

Naru sits up and looks at his face. His eyes are semi-open. He is
smiling at her.

Keitaro: I am. a loser. A third year ronin who will never amount to
anything. I have no redeeming qualities. I could never make anyone
happy. Hell I can't even go a day in the Hinata House without getting
hit. Me even living there is a mistake. Just another misunderstanding
added to the countless ones that make up my life.

Naru: Oh, Keitaro, you truly believe that? Even though I constantly
call you a loser and an idiot. I never mean it! Ever since you came to
Hinata House, things have gotten great. We may have occasional
misunderstandings, but we don't hate you, and would never want to lose
you.

Keitaro: Naru.

Keitaro looks at Naru, smiles then passes out. Naru's face turns to
pure panic.

Naru: Kei.Kei.Keitaro!!! No! Wake up! Don't go! Wake up! Will someone
please call an ambulance!?