Adokenai Ai

Sometimes my heart hurts.

It hurts so much that I feel the need to curl into a little ball and die. I feel alone, and invisible. I feel like I'm never going to be saved because no one cares enough to save me.

These thoughts only come during the late hours of night, though.

Even three months after Takako, I still have the nightmares.

Those dark ones about me losing my powers and falling into darkness, becoming the next Princess of Disaster. I think about how I probably would feel no remorse in hurting the Knights of Leafe, and I thing about it even more when Hayate comes to mind.

Sometimes when I can't fall asleep, all I need to do is to think about him. When I think about him, I feel really safe. Warmth and protection come from my thoughts of him. I don't think about how he probably does not return the feelings I have, but instead dream about what would happen if he did.

If he loved me and we could be together.

I think he knows about my nightmares. Takako and I discuss this a lot when I go and visit Leafeania. Takako is under the impression that Hayate does harbor deep feelings for me but I don't really believe her.

Goh also tells me this. He tells me that when I died saving everyone, when I died to bring Sasame and Hayate back, that Hayate kissed me.

Goh told me that he was actually crying. I can't really imagine him crying though, stoic but sexy Hayate. Goh told me that he thinks Hayate's kiss is what brought me back.

I don't know.

I once tried to ask Hayate about this, I asked him about what he was going to tell me after the battle, but he withdrew into himself and refused to give.

My heart is aching and hurting right now.

I don't know why, maybe it is just because I had a very bad day. I woke up late; I missed my ride to school, never got to eat breakfast… I went to visit Sasame too, but he told me that 'Now is not a good time.'

Mother scolded me too after I got all wet walking home alone. Yayoi had her writing workshop classes and Mawata was busy watching Mannen, Hajame, and Shin. I had only been half way home when it started to downpour.

Sighing slightly, I put my hands over my eyes. My bed used to feel really soft when I first came here, but now it seems hard as a rock and as cold as ice.

I really don't like it when Mother scolds me because Dad gets really upset. Mayune usually laughs at me too, and that never really helps. I suddenly feel really bottled up.

I feel like I have majestic white wings on my back but I can never fly with them because I don't know how. I feel like this room is a cage so I fly up from my bed and leave it behind.

I get to the doors at the front of the house and open one quietly. They are usually squeaky so I do it very slowly, and softly. I hear the noise of three guards running towards me.

Mother always has at least five men watching the house during the nighttime. I smile at them and they nod me off, watching as I shiver and walk away in nothing but my pink tank and black night pants. I have my shoes on and I hear it them squish on the still moist grass.

I am glad it stopped raining a while ago.

I love how the air is that much fresher after it rains. The smell is wonderful and sometimes I wish that it would rain more often. I walk to the bridge where Sesame and I first Prét together.

The flowers and land are back to normal which makes me happy, but during the night this area is really sad and melancholy. I walk to the wind chimes and sit on the still damp and very cold cement risings.

The shadows play tricks on my eyes and I feel as if I am again back when we fought all those demon larva and had to worry about the Princess of Disaster. I sigh quietly into my folded hands and ignore the goosebumps on my arms from the cold.

I am shivering because the wind is blowing on this cool night. I turn my head though to the direction of the wind. The Wind Knight has yet again found his place into my thoughts.

For the first time though, I wish he would leave them.

I think about how I'm just going to get myself hurt by loving him. I'm just going to end up like Takako even though the situation is nothing like it was back them. I think about what has happened for me to become the prétear. How many people have been hurt because of my foolish mistakes?

I think about the suffering I must have caused each and every one of the Leafe Knights. Then my heart not only hurts, it aches. It aches with the yearning to be free. Free from all this pain that I've bottled up behind friendly smiles and sweet words. If I could just be alone, like Mawata said; "It's good to be alone. When you're alone you won't hurt anyone nor would you get hurt."

"If I just disappeared…"

I whisper this into the lone wind.

"Then what?"

I feel my body go into shock and look around. I see Hayate, the very Knight I was trying not to think about standing before me. I didn't even sense him coming either.

"Ne?" I ask, forgetting what he said from my momentary shock.

"What good would it do for you to disappear?" He continued, sitting next to me on the cold and damp rising. His warmth is radiating off of him, and I just want to curl up into his arms, 'But loving him is only going to hurt you…' That nagging voice whispers in my head. I scoot a few inches away from him.

"I wouldn't hurt anyone." I say, mocking Mawata's words.

His deep blue eyes look at me. I feel them as they intake everything, almost as if he is looking into my soul and sucking all my emotions dry. I both love and loath his gaze.

Looking away, he asked me, "How do you hurt people?"

I think about this. How do I hurt people? I hurt them not only by forcing my existence upon them, but by making them feel lonely. Because it only seems I have everything, even if that is not the truth, they see what I have and want it.

I have things that I take for granted.

I have my powers as the prétear, I have beautiful house with my 'wonderful' and 'warm' family, I have Hayate… but in the harsh reality I don't have any of those things.

My powers fade with emotions and weakness, my beautiful home is cold and the family inside distant, Hayate does not love me the way I love him… Life is as bittersweet as a ripe green apple that has a rotten core.

"I hurt…" I whisper, turning away as tears I don't want to come do anyway, "I hurt…"

He looks at me and I don't really want to say anything. I want for him to leave me now in this cold air on this freezing bench. "You hurt inside?" He asks, and I don't catch myself before agreeing with his statement.

"Yes." I whisper.

Looking up I realize how unlike me saying and thinking all these things are. I am supposed to be the happy girl who can laugh at any hardship and will smile well sacrificing everything for others…

"Hayate, I have found that I cannot fit into this role that other's play me for." I say, looking at him. He nods, "How so?"

"So many people expect so many things from me, and I hurt them when I can't be what they want me to be." I don't know why I am telling Hayate of all people this; normally these thoughts would be reserved for mother's plant or even for Sasame but not for Hayate.

I shiver and realize that my hands are now turning a slight blue from the cold. He notices this but instead of putting his coat around me, he wraps his arms around me and pulls me onto his lap. I think about pulling away, but his body is so warm…

Leaning my head into the crook of his neck I latch my fingers onto his shirt. He tightens his grip around my back and I suddenly remove all thoughts of him hurting me from my mind. All's I have think about is Hayate, and the possibility that maybe, just maybe, he loves me back.

"Do you ever just hurt Hayate?" I ask him, attempting for conversation and maybe an explanation as to why he is holding me. He seems to be deep in thought though, it takes him a few moments to answer.

"Yes, I do." He finally says.

I pull back and give him 'the look.' The one where I make my face look indifferent but my eyes are pleading with him to continue. I watch as he lifts one hand up and touch's my cheek.

I almost laugh as I think about how it seems that I have randomly come out of one of Yayoi's romance novels. Sitting on a handsome man's lap well his hand rests on my cheek and we divulge our inner-most secrets.

I feel my face heat up as I think about how now, at this moment, it would be a perfect opportunity to kiss him. I have always wondered what it would be like to kiss him. What would his lips taste like? In my imagination they would be warm and soft. I think that he would taste like cinnamon, because that's what his scent often reminds me of.

"When do you hurt?" I ask, licking my lips in the cold and leaning into his chest. His arms shift around my body and I realize now how cold I must have been. With all this warmth and heat around me I suddenly notice how empty and freezing I have been. How, just like my life, I sat in the cold and never once wondered how it would be like to feel the heat again.

My body was tingling, but it was wonderful.

"I hurt when you hurt, Himeno." He tells me, and I'm not sure what to think of this. Does it mean that he hurts because I'm in physical pain? As a prétear? Or does he mean that when my heart aches like now? I am unsure so I look back up at him, giving him another, "look."

He just gives that awkward smile and I notice how tired he looks. He looks like he has the weight of the world in his arms and as if he hasn't slept in forever. I reach up and press my freezing palm to his face. His eyelids fall down and he brings his hand to grasp mine.

"I have been really worried about you Himeno." He tells me.

"Why?" I ask.

"Well, duh." He says, rolling his eyes. "I care about you Himeno, you know that."

I smile up at him. "I know." I tell him, "It's just nice to hear that sometimes, you know?"

He looks at me. His eyes are dark as if he is sifting and sorting through a multitude of thoughts that don't process right away. Then, as if he has reached a conclusion, his hand lift up onto my chin and I feel my chin being pulled up by the warmth.

Then, before I know what is going on, I feel something warm press against my lips. It takes me a moment to realize that Hayate is kissing me. I mean, jeez! Hayate is kissing ME! I know he is about to pull back, so I kiss him back, hard.

Taking in a deep breath, I raise myself up to make my mouth more accessible. I put my hands behind his neck and feel his hands on my hips moving up my back. His warm fingers leave trails on my skin and I massage his lips with mine.

Then, as if it is the most natural thing in the world, we deepen the kiss. At first it feels so odd, his tongue on mine, but then I realize that I don't care. Our lips meet and caress like old friends. Pulling back for a moment, I catch my breath, but then I pull back to him.

His hands tighten on mine and he falls backward on the stone setting. I want to squeak in surprise but hold it back. My hands sift through his hair as my tongue explores his mouth. His hands are all over me now, running down my arms, thumbs padding my breasts, and fingers moving down my stomach. Finally, I pull back again and we breathe.

His arms wrap tightly around my waste and I latch to his clothing. It seems that neither of us wants to let this feeling go. Laying my head down on his chest, I regain my normal breath again.

"Your really good at listening" I tell him, not knowing what to say and internally slapping myself for saying something so retarded.

He nods, and I hear his throat vibrate, "Uh, huh."

I can't help but smile.

Maybe my daydreams of us being together aren't so impossible. Maybe Takako and Goh were right…

Maybe Hayate really is my Adokenai Ai... My one true love.

I fall asleep in his arms with that thought in mind.