New Year's Day Tears

A/N: This is a love without hindrance, simply because I am lazy. If I feel like it, a sequel or some other jazz might be doodled around Valentine's Day. Of Course, don't expect it to be happy if this is going to go all diddly-doo-da well.

I hope you all enjoy this as your "Holiday Special" and allow me to live through the New Year in peace.

And it's not great, I warn you now. Be afraid, be afraid.


I was once in love.

It was true love; I know, because after I awoke, it left an aching greater in my heart than when I betrayed my family.

It was so long ago, it all does seem like a dream that I created. A mere iridescent fantasy I made up to ease the loneliest years of my painful existence.

So how can you tell me you truly love me?


Dec. 29 11:50 PM

Standing clad in just a bathrobe, Yuki gazed heavenwards as the little snowflakes swirled and danced to a rhythm that was secret and heard only by them, but for each individual it ended at different times.

He stood as the intruder upon the roof, the trespasser among their sacred waltz of sorts, stopping the descent of many as they landed on him and not the ground they were intended to rest upon, just as he.

Lifting his right from his side, Yuki watched through cold Cobalt eyes as the snowflakes that landed on his palm never faded. None melted as they touched his skin, instead slowly started to gather on him enough as though he were part of the earth's natural greenery, which was the problem.

He wasn't natural.

He certainly wasn't part of the earth, or a common type for that matter. He was simply put alone, scorned, and existed for the sole purpose of making other chosen individuals miserable. He did the same as what he was doing to the snowflake right now, choosing a certain crystalline and tipped his left index finger to its perfect peak, separating it as the one among many that, the one he chose.

Yuki's lips twitched into a grimace as he attempted to smile, his teeth gleaming in the faint light that pooled out from the windows and reached past his broad frame. The rays fell upon his back as they attempted to shine through him, casting an unrealistic shadow of him that didn't match his frame at all.

Too bad shadows never lie.

He didn't truly feel but glimpsed from the corner of his eyes that the snow was starting to gather around his ankles. Yuki finally decided to end the useless torment towards his brothers and sisters, not even leaving as much as footprints as he made his way back inside the spacious apartment. It was midnight by now, he reasoned, all good children are inside at this time. Watch that the bogeyman doesn't get you.

He thought of the snowflakes as his siblings, for they were just like he; cold, heartless, and indifferent to those they make uncomfortable with their frigid touch.

Only one had dared to care, and it was his fault they were gone.

Well,if I can't find you again by New Years' Eve, he smiled ruefully, I'll come see if the grass is greener on the other side.


Dec. 30 5:35 PM

"Damnit, Shuichi! Where the hell did you put them?"

Shuichi hustled through the little kitchen space that remained, searching everywhere for the soba noodles so Takayo wouldn't bite his head off. He was failing miserably.

"I swear I put it with the rice yesterday, Takayo-San. I really don't know what happened to them," Shuichi pleaded.

Takayo Uzumaki, the owner of the small restaurant known locally as 'the Corner store', had been in a grouchy mood for nearly a week now. She was even starting to growl at customers who couldn't make up their minds on what they wanted to order. But everyone was used to her short temper, so it truly didn't matter.

"Noodles don't grow legs and walk off simply like that!" she admonished, shaking her wooden spoon in his direction. "We have four orders of Ramen and two of Yaki-Soba! They are expected to be done at six-fifteen!"

The three other helpers, Takashi, the tall and talkative one, Ro, the quiet and more muscular with 20/20 on both eyes, and Kazuto, the one who was always laughing about something, smiled in his direction in a sympathetic manner. They had worked here a whole year before Takayo warmed up to them somewhat. She was a very difficult woman to get along with.

Shuichi was near tears. This was his second week working here, after he had searched for a part-time job to pay his apartment bills. "I could run to the Banzai Supermarket," he offered, heading towards the back door to get his coat and cloves on. "I rode here on my bike today, so it won't take me long."

She sighed,yelling atTakashi to go and take the next two customers' orders as she added more water to a pan and keep the other three from burning. "It's coming out of your paycheck, Shuichi-Kun. Fine, go now, if you're on wheels. It will take ten minutes from here to there, but hurry back. And get some more sake while you're at it!"

Shuichi sighed in relief, thanking her and storming out the back, swinging his legs across his bike seat onto the paddles, and rode off as fast as he could.

Snow had been falling all day and the light was getting scarce, making the side streets slippery and his steering unsure as he skidded to a halt in front of the Supermarket, nearly crashing into a lamppost as he attempted to stop. He locked it to the pole and pulled open the glass door to run through and shop real quick for the weeks' groceries, since he probably wouldn't have time later.


5:53 PM

Shuichi hadn't noticed how fast the snow had been falling and was caught off guard as he stormed out of Banzai and tripped over his feet in the snow. Expecting a cold and painful crash, he couldn't understand why neither came.

"Are you okay?"

Shuichi glanced up as he realized he fell straight into the arms of someone, silently thanking his lucky stars that the Sake bottle was still safe and cursing his luck for this accidental encounter. The voice was deep, velvety satin, as if those three words could truly caress him.

"Thanks, I'm fi-" Shuichi's words wouldn't leave his throat as he got a close look at who saved him.

He was tall, nearly a head taller than Shuichi, filling out his trench coat completely and fully. His hair was ash-blonde and he was pale, like moonlit ivory or porcelain. But his eyes were what fascinated Shuichi the most; a deep-blue Cobalt that seemed to want to envelop you whole, as if you could drown in them the longer you stared. But they seemed so frigid, emotionless, that it scared Shuichi for a moment as he saw them warm up momentarily. Out of kindness or anger, he wasn't too sure, but he didn't want to find out.

Shuichi's heart gave a violent shudder inside him as he caught a whiff of what he smelled like. A wild, exotic scent that infatuated and terrified him. But it seemed so familiar to him, a strange yet accustomed feeling accompanied him that Shuichi couldn't help but wonder if they hadn't met before.

He helped Shuichi regain his balance, awkwardly lifting him and stepped back and said nothing, as if taking his being in.

Feeling suddenly exposed under the stranger's piercing gaze, Shuichi started to turn scarlet and hastily thanked himself, running off in the direction of the Corner Store, completely forgetting his bike. But the sight of him brought back a dream he had long ago, of someone like him crying. Crying, and cursing the world as his arms embraced him.

Yuki continued to stare after him, his own heart having given a painful thump that had startled him. He had lost his cold demeanor, though only for a moment, as something inside him began to stir, urging him into some kind of action. What kind he couldn't understand, nearly disregarding this whole incident until he suddenly felt surrounded in lilacs and rain. A unique, exquisite scent that had poisoned and fed his senses and had filled his loneliness so many nights in a life long gone.

Silently a single tear crept down his cheek, something that did not go unnoticed as he stared wildly around him, looking for the pink-haired boy he'd just run into. Maybe I should have come out later, Yuki wondered, still feeling the lightness of him on his arms. He reached a hand up to touch the already frozen drop, his crystal promise.

The something that had stirred inside him did finally kick him into action; the action to try and find the boy and watch him for as long as it takes to find out why he feels this.


6:20 PM

"Damnit, Shuichi! Where were you?" Takayo greeted him, this time shaking a cleanly washed frying pan in his direction, suds flying among the steam of cooking vegetables and meat.

"I'm so sorry, Takayo-San. I accidentally forgot my bike and I had to run back and get it," he panted, holding out the plastic bag with her needs as Kazuto came up and took them from him, whispering into his ear.

"You're lucky that Takashi found the other noodles, or else she'd ripped off your head by now." He grinned at Shuichi, who was still catching his breath as he hung up his coat. Shuichi didn't doubt a word he said, even if it was in a joking manner.

When he'd first met her, she had just seemed like an overly energetic housewife. But now, he wondered if maybe she wasn't the fury in person or the scourge of all things great.

Takayo continued to glower at him for another five minutes before turning to smile pleasantly at a customer. "Hello there! How many, please?"

Shuichi stared at her, wondering if she really was that two-faced, which he didn't truly doubt.

"Hey Shuichi-Kun, it's for you!" Takayo called, this time bustling over to criticize Ro about his style of chopping vegetables.

Shuichi looked across the counter, confused as to who would need him.

"Hey, Shu-Kun!" Hiro smiled at him, holding up two coupons for fifty percent off of every other pack of Pocky. "It's almost six thirty, so can I just hang here until you're done?"

"Hiro," Shuichi breathed, smiling back, but feeling slightly disappointed. A strange feeling of elation had been surrounding him, as if he were expecting something. But what? "You want a bowl of Katsudon? I'll pay."

Hiro beamed even more, feeling that today was going to end excellently.


Yuki had skimmed the skies searching for the boy, only to see him running back to retrieve his lost bike and had followed him to a little building that sold food, their kind of food, at least. He stood among the shadows, planning to walk up to him once boy left what he guessed was his job. Thankfully, he had been spared such time-consuming tasks in his previous life.

Much to his dismay, another youth around his child's age walked in and proved to be an acquaintance of sorts. It shocked Yuki to think of the other boy as his child, his own, as if he owned him. I might, he mused slightly, shocked at himself yet still unable to resist a grin to spread across his face.

Getting slightly irritated that it was taking so long for them to close, Yuki decided to speed things up just a bit. Although it was only eight, Yuki sent a whisper of closing the restaurant early tonight-holiday special.

It didn't take long for customers to finish and leave, their eyes slightly glassy as they remembered things that needed to be done.

He smiled in self-satisfaction as he watched people walk off into different directions to undertake whatever it was they went to go do. His smile instantly turned into a sneer as he noticed that the one who had come from the subway with long brown hair had remained unaffected by his mental nudge, still sitting on his stool and eating away on his- whatever it was he was eating.

Yuki growled in the back of his throat, knowing that it would have no sense to go and intervene between the two, but he refused to let the pink-haired boy be. His mind certainly wouldn't allow him to go with the other nuisance by himself. Yuki slowly prepared himself to follow and waited until they both walked out, his eyes gleaming as he watched them walk back in the direction towards the Supermarket.

Shuichi's heart continuously beat inside him at such an unsteady rhythm, he was afraid he might have heartburn.

Hiro glanced over in his direction, taking note of his friend's slight perspiration in this cold weather. "Hey, Shuichi, you feeling okay there?"

"I'm fine, I'm fine. Really, don't worry about it," Shuichi shook his head, attempting to laugh but managing a little more than a strangled gurgle.

"Are you sure you're not working over-time?" Hiro asked, looking around for the nearest apothecary. "Maybe we should get you some medicine."

"Oh, no that's okay! Really, I swear I'm fine!" Shuichi turned even paler, appearing sicklier under his mop of magenta hair, his sanguine eyes seeming aflame. "I need to try and save my money to pay off this month's bills and what-not." His heartbeat was slowly increasing, a painful sensation that he was determined not to let Hiro notice.

Hiro sighed, scratching his head. "Look, maybe you should move in with me. I know that it's small and dingy, but it's big enough for the both of us and I won't have to worry about you all the time. Besides," he said, tapping his pocket with the wallet inside, "I won't have to go all across hell and creation to get to your house."

Shuichi grinned, wanting to thank him for his concern. A chill ran down his spine, cold fingers caressing his back. A bitter-cold ether embraced him, numbing his senses into submission, Shuichi managing only to not hit his head as he tumbled backwards.

"Shuichi!" Hiro yelled, attempting to grab hold of his arm as he began to fall, only nearly falling himself as Shuichi was caught yet again.

Regaining balance, Hiro was startled to see the tall blonde hold Shuichi so casually. A slight twinge of spite tweaked somewhere inside him as he continued to stare into his blue eyes, but was instantly lost at the sight of his best friend's limp form. "Shuichi! Can you hear me?" Hiro tried regaining his attention, but not succeeding.

Yuki did his best not to glare down at the aggravating idiot. "He'll be fine," he answered for Shuichi, gently picking him up and starting to carry him off towards his car. He might not associate much with these ignorant fools, but it didn't hurt to keep up with the times and travel in style.

"Hey! Where are you going with Shuichi? And how do you know he'll be fine?" Hiro demanded, ready to throw his beloved guitar, Hitomi, at this guy's head.

Yuki turned around, his eyes a deep pure azure that somehow struck Hiro silent. "He will contact you in the morning when he feels better," he said, more of a claim than a reassurance. "He fell earlier today and I was there as well. I have studied medicines enough as to where I can take care of him. I promise you I will bring him back in one piece," he added, the corners of his lips lifting into a predatorily smile.

Hiro didn't want to back down, but having no sufficient argument to throw against him, he just nodded, hoping that Shuichi would come back.

Yuki's eyes softened slightly at Hiro's loyalty towards his friend, but it was getting in his way at the moment and therefore a hindrance in his plans.

He nodded a farewell, having already laid Shuichi across in the back seat and started the engine, driving down the street towards his residence in the city.


Dec. 31 5:23 AM

Shuichi awoke to the feeling of being watched, as if eyes were looking right through him.

He groaned, not sure why this sudden exhaustion had taken hold of him as he reached over to turn on his night lamp. It was always dark in the mornings, no suspicion came to his mind as he slowly recalled yesterday. He had remained calm, until he couldn't find the switch.

Shuichi's mind immediately reeled into full awareness, frantically looking around into the darkness as he tried to recall what exactly happened yesterday.

"Don't worry. You're safe now." A strong hand reached out of the night and rubbed across his in a calming motion. Shuichi jumped at the touch, the hand feeling as if it had been cooled in ice, cold and lifeless.

It was the same silken voice from before. But hadn't that all been a dream? The stranger having caught him yet again, laying him in his car and then moments later Shuichi being in nothing but boxers. Shuichi put his free hand against his chest, only to find a shirt covering it already. A soft shirt, soft material of the same sort was covering his legs as well. So I am dressed, he thought with some embarrassment, even if the pajamas obviously weren't his.

A warm light began to emit around the room as Yuki turned a knob in the wall, Shuichi realizing it was the kind of light in which you could change the brightness. He swallowed once, twice, testing to see how well his throat was. Slightly dry, but he could speak.

"Thank you for helping me again," he started meekly. "But who are you? It seems that every time I need help, you're there, and I haven't thanked you properly yet."

Yuki remained silent, gazing into the deep effervescent and warm eyes. They weren't cold like his, nor did they try to hide any kind secret feeling. They were open and full of expression, making it seem they were incapable of ever turning to ice like his.

"Don't worry about it," he said, taking his hand back as Shuichi's warmth lingered on his palm still. "Just call me Yuki." He lifted himself out of the ornamented chair, moving towards the fireplace in the center of the room as he picked some wood to be reduced to ashes by the flames.

"Mine's Shuichi."He continued to watch him from the corner of his eyes, stretching languidly as he attempted to crack his back.

"I meant to go pay off my bills yesterday," he mumbled more to himself than Yuki, "but I'm sure they've turned off everything by now."

"Everything?" Yuki queried.

"You know, water, electricity, the phone. Just everything," he shrugged nonchalantly, sighing at his wasted efforts. "I was already a month behind with the payment, so I asked the owner if I couldn't pay it off by the thirtieth. Too late now," he leaned back into the soft pillows, tempted to go back to sleep.

Yuki never had such worries as paying bills. He never had many worries at all, until he lost her. "I don't think it's possible to lose everything," he said as he came to sit back down in the polished chair next to his bed. "I think you can only feel true loss if all you were and all you are have been taken from you. True loss is when you watch how your soul and light slowly dies in front of you, attempting to hide the pain that is so obvious in her jerking motion and her last worries were for you." Yuki's eyes had grown distant and cloudy, as if reliving a memory filled solely with pain and misery.

"She can barely breathe, because of all the blood she's lost. But yet she does everything to reach you, to hold you and kiss you and tell you that she loves you, because it's true. She wishes you happiness and all you can do is cry in her shoulder, the grief and horror still too much, the fear of losing her to eternity holding you fast and you can only cry harder. Her grip doesn't loosen on you until the very end, where your mind is numb and you carefully touch her and put your arms around her, for fear of her flying away and never coming back."

Shuichi was slightly pale, unsure of how to respond. He glanced around the room, as if he could see who he was talking about. "Was she beautiful?" he asked tentatively instead, thinking of any kind of form of comfort he could offer.

Yuki glanced at him, his own eyes having slowly warmed a little. "Yes, she was amazingly beautiful. And I still look for her to this day, though I think I might have found her again." His seemed to come more alive the longer they gazed at Shuichi, who was turning scarlet all the while.

"Really? Who do you think it is?" he had heard about some people who search for love-reborn, therefore Shuichi chose not to comment too much on the matter.

Yuki didn't reply, instead handing him his clothes and heading towards the oak door. "We can't go into town today, because all the roads are closed due to heavy snowfall." He said, as a way of explanation. "You can stay here again, if you like."

Shuichi knew he shouldn't intrude, that he must never be a burden on others. But he wasn't able to resist the offer and nodded gratefully. Besides, he had no true reason to go home if nothing worked, anyway.


11:32 AM

Shuichi had been sitting in the kitchen, mulling over a cup of tea. Yuki had left him alone as he went upstairs, saying he had a deadline to meet but for what remained unmentioned.

Shuichi had nodded in reply and was offered the library downstairs for a distraction.

Now he sat, looking out the window from time to time, everything looking like a great gray canvas yet to be painted upon.

He sighed in boredom,wondering if Yuki would mind him cooking lunch.

Thinking 'no', he began rummaging around for a pot and tofu. He was going to make Miso Soup today, A Corner Store Special.


1:15 PM

"Miso Soup?" Yuki asked in disbelief as he stared down at the bowl that was still steaming.

"You don't like Miso Soup?" Shuichi began to scold himself for not asking Yuki if he even ate it.

Yuki continued to stare and carefully lifted his spoon into the broth and raised it to his lips, another unexpected warmth spreading through him. It was delicious.

"You make it just like her," he said, doubts diminishing as well as his fears. "It taste exactly the same unique way she always made it."

Shuichi sighed in relief, worries all gone.

Just like her,Yuki thought, sadness slowly overcoming him. He continued to eat in silence, his eyes never once leaving Shuichi's face.


10:25 PM

New Year's Day would be in less than four hours. Yuki could not wait any longer to find out the truth or not.

Shuichi was back in his pajamas from the previous night, sitting in the large bedroom on the woolen rug that covered the whole floor with a shojo-manga that he found in the library filled with nothing but novels, encyclopedias and dictionaries. Simply put, he was glad for this distraction from other scientifical knowledges.

Yuki sat at the foot of the bed as well, typing on his laptop a note only accessible for Tatsuha if he ever needed to konw his location.

"Yuki?" Shuichi interrupted the silence, laying the book down and crawling over to where Yuki was sitting.

"Hm?"

"Thank you for letting me stay here," he said, his face turning scarlet with embarrassment once again. "I've probably been a great bother to you, but I really am grateful for your kindness."

Yuki looked away from the humming screen, glancing over his glasses at Shuichi's downcast eyes. "It's all right."

His voice, no matter what he said, always remained a seductive velvet that made Shuichi tingle every time. "Tell me about her."

Yuki looked at him again, understanding perfectly what he meant, just not the reason.

"Please tell me what kind of a person she was."

The silence that passed between them seemed eternal, but Yuki finished typing whatever it was he wrote, closed his laptop and laid it down next to him, shifting his body so as to sit more comfortably.

"She was simply amazing," he started, taking off his glasses and also laying them a safe distance away. "She was the girl that I loved and we wanted to remain together. She was loud, obnoxious, but energetic and optimistic, and she simply made me crazy. We had a whole future unexplored before us, but certain circumstances wouldn't allow it to be so."

Shuichi settled in closer to him, feeling a draw that seemed irresistible. "What happened to her?"

Yuki's eyes were losing their frozen grace as he continued. "When we first moved in here, I had to go back into town to put in our papers and retrieve the deed. I told her I would most likely have to spend the night, because the townhouse was so far away back then. I did have to leave her alone, but that night-" Yuki stopped, and the threads of his soul that had been tied in a vicious knot, bleeding every warmth from him, was slowly undone. "There had been burglaries appearing in the neighborhood, but she had reassured me that nothing would happen. But fate, of course, didn't grant us that much joy."

It was hard for him to talk about this, Shuichi realized, slowly regretting his pestering. He opened his mouth to apologize, but Yuki held his hand up to stop him.

"It needs to be said," he answered quietly, shaking his head in rejection of his apology, "if not now, then never."

Shuichi held his tongue, listening on to what Yuki had to say.

"That night, the burglars came into our house. They had thrown a rock through the living room window and using bats to get rid of the glass that was in their way. She had run down to try and stop them, but they beat her mercilessly and cut her throat. I managed to come home before the evening was over, but I couldn't save her. I chased out the two criminals, killing one of them with his own knife. She saw me and called to me, but I couldn't move. It hurt too much to see her in that painful state, I could only start to cry. Instead she came to me, using her last strength to take me in her arms and comfort me. And what was even more difficult, I am reminded of her every New Year's eve" Tears had escaped his eyes and were now flowing down his cheeks, the ice inside him melting and tenderness as well as relief welled in him.

Shuichi came and held him tight, his shoulders trembling as he continued to cry. "But it wasn't your fault," he said, trying his best to comfort him, "you didn't know it would happen."

It wasn't your fault.

"She told me the same words," he replied, regaining somewhat control of himself as he shook of Shuichi's hands. "But I still felt the pain. Everyday it grew worse until I killed off all of my emotions, never once forgiving myself and allowing to feel."

Yuki put both of his hands on either side of Shuichi's head, holding his lips mere inches from his own. "Satsuki," he breathed against his face, his thumb caressing Shuichi's cheek. "Please forgive me."

Before Shuichi could reply, his lips were caught in a tender embrace with Yuki's own. It was an emotional turmoil inside him that he couldn't explain, thoughts and memories surfacing he didn't know he had. A warm liquid surged throughout his whole being, Yuki's tongue a freezing fire against his skin.

Images swam through his mind of warm days, beautiful mornings, and amazing nights.

He could do little more than lean into the touch, and within an instant, all reasoning escaped his mind, and he allowed him to be explored.

His shoulders escaped their silken prison, his skin became aflame wherever Yuki's hands touched him. It burned him from the inside out, and for one instant, the instant they both connected mentally and physically, Shuichi really was Satsuki.


Shuichi awoke the next morning, feeling extremely tired and alone.

He looked over onto the bed, finding a note that told of Yuki's absence. Shuichi could do little more but tremble in relief and sorrow, having been whole for one night and then feeling a little more but half lost.

Please, he begged, his silent tears falling upon his folded hands, please find your happiness now.


Shuichi,

I thank you for having helped me find my soul again.

I thank you for helping me realize that I had to let go in order to find her, that she had been waiting for me all along.

And I apologize to you for having gone through you to see her again.

I now am gone to pay my respects and to return into her arms.

Because I should have known, my Wild Flower would never let me go.

I now feel love, and it was not a dream this time.

May your heart not deceive you, either.


It's New Year's Day, and the snow falls silently as it weeps for it's brother now gone beneath the snow.

A flower in the garden, solely blooms in it's full glory among the frozen tears.

FIN


A/N: To clear upsome confusion, Yuki just went on and died, because he was what I call a 'Rebirther'. Regretfully not those kind from Neji, but sort of like a ghost who feeds off of others' souls (a saintly vampire, perhaps?) Anyway, more or less along the lines of one of my own mythical creations, so don't expect to see any of these guys around much.

Satsuki is a type of flower, and she died on New Years' (strange, no?) and her soul somehow connected to Shuichi's, so that's technically the whole spin-off.

Flame me, go on! I know you want to, because it's late as well, which isn't my fault, because I got grounded five minutes before I could click the Update button!

Later Days

C.S.