Love me, love me not

Disclaimer: Nope, I do not own Tactics…Too bad.

Rating: PG (old rating) or K+ (new rating)

Genre: Romance, angst

Pairing: Haruka and Kantaro, implied Haruka and Yuri

Warnings or note: One-shot. Sappy and angst, shonen-ai, OOC-ness, anime spoilers, grammar and other errors, around 1900 words.

Please take note that this fiction contains homosexual scenes that might offence someone. Please leave if you hate this kind of stuff.

For those who like shonen-ai, well, please enjoy my second fic of Tactics in This is my first one-shot and I hope it came out all right. I am taking a break from writing the multi-chapters 'Waiting for you' and this idea crossed my mind. I haven't write romance for some time now…and I wonder if I still manage to handle it. :sweatdrops: Please review to let me know what do you think of this. Thank you!

: Ready…Go :

"If…somehow Yuri regains her memories…would you be together with her?" an innocent childlike voice asked timidly. His voice was almost inaudible to the young charming man sitting across him in the room. But his companion had a sharp ear and his innocent yet sensitive question earned a low growl from the man.

The lad with short black silky hair turned to look outside of the window. "Humans and demons are not meant to be together," his reply was abrupt at the mention of the girl he had grown to be fond of in a short time.

The younger looked at him for a moment before he replied. "No one said that before, Haruka," he answered back in a low tone, sounding almost nostalgia. Upon seeing no response from the other, he rose from his place towards the door. It was then the other chose to reply.

"Why do you care anyway, Kantaro?" he asked, as if challenging his master to admit his feelings for the Orge Eater tengu. When he heard that, Kantaro stopped in his tracks. Without turning back to his slave with the name Haruka given by himself, he answered.

"I am just asking a friend of his life," with that, he went out, leaving Haruka alone in his room. 'Yeah…a friend…Haruka is my friend…my very important friend. No…he is my most important person in my life…,' his mind corrected him even though he tried to fight with it in the beginning. Somehow Kantaro knew…if Yuri really did regain her memories, probably Haruka would be with her. And it hurt Kantaro to think of that.

"Kan-chan…why don't you just tell him?" a concerned female voice suddenly pulled him out of his thoughts. Her master quickly turned to look at her with a faked smile in order to cover his pained feelings.

"Oh, Yoko! I didn't notice you. I am sorry…By the way, what do we have for dinner later?" In just a second, he managed to change the topic and ignore her question at the same time. Every time, the small trick worked. It worked every time, but unfortunately, it did not this time.

"Kan-chan, I am serious. Don't change the topic! I can see too well being the third person here. Why can't you speak up like a man without running away?" she asked straight forwardly at her master. As far as she could see, Kantaro had some feelings more than a friend or a master-slave relationship with Haruka. Yet, being passive as he was born to be, he did not admit nor confess it to the other man, which the demon fox found rather annoying.

"He likes Yuri until now, Yoko," finally Kantaro gave in and answered with regret and sadness in his voice. It seemed like Kantaro had given up on Haruka since the moment he found out the tengu had grown to like the girl. It was impossible for the famous tengu to even like him in the first place, let alone return his feelings.

"You have not even admitted your feelings to him! How do you know he does not feel the same?" she decided to push the subject further. Even though it might hurt her master, but if it could turn out to be better in the end by any chance, she would have to try.

Kantaro simply shook his head in defeat. "He said humans and demons are not meant to be together," he replied, repeating perfectly what the other had told him just a second ago.

"That is different from confessing your love, Kan-chan! You simply asked him about being together with Yuri. It had nothing to do with you," she answered, almost yelling at the youth.

"Yes, it had nothing to do with me. It always has nothing to do with me…," to her surprise, Kantaro decided to play angst and started to look really gloomy. "He will never…"

Before he could finish, Yoko grabbed his shoulders with both of her hands. "Listen to me, Kantaro," something in her voice told Kantaro to take note. She seldom called Kantaro other than 'Kan-chan', and if she did, it would only mean one thing. She was dead serious. "You won't get the answer if you just sit here and do nothing than asking something useless. Gather up your courage and ask for the answer!" she added.

"…," Kantaro was silent for the moment. "Why…do you care so much, Yoko?" then he finally spoke in an almost unheard voice. His bangs covered his crimson eyes, and it also covered his emotions at that time.

"Because I want you to be happy. Also, I want Haruka to be happy," was her pure sincere reply, which it touched her master deeply.

After a long silence, her master spoke. "Thank you, Yoko…I would ask him when I am ready." Although she was not quite satisfied with his 'when I am ready', but she still took it and gave him a small smile.

Later at night, Kantaro decided just to take a look at his male slave before going back to sleep. It was late at that time, and both of his slaves should be sleeping by then. Thus, he carefully made his steps towards Haruka's room and gently pulled the sliding door. There, lied his male slave. He was sleeping peacefully, so it seemed. Watching his slave from such distance made Kantaro wanting to be close to Haruka. So, he did. He walked near the sleeping figure, settled down without a noise and sadly looked at the moon outside.

"If Yuri regains her memories, would you leave me?" he murmured to himself. Unknown to him, Haruka, who was supposed to be asleep, overheard his question. He was not sleeping, but when he heard Kantaro's footsteps, he decided to act. It was quite a surprise to him that his master would reveal something he would not usually in this situation. When he heard Kantaro's murmur, his eyes opened in mind bewilderment. And he saw tiny drops of salty liquids dropped on the floor. Tears. Kantaro was crying…

"What if I do?" he found himself asking all of a sudden. It was then the reflected light of the moon showed the shocked face of Kantaro's. He did not expect Haruka to pretend he was sleeping. Before he knew what he was doing, his body headed straight towards the opened door without answering Haruka's question. And before he knew what was happening, he found himself falling backwards for being pulled by someone's hand. "You haven't answered me, Kantaro," Haruka's voice was so demanding.

Kantaro could only feel embarrassed, perhaps afraid of losing his friendship with the tengu he had liked since they met, if he told him. Not forget to mention they were in such position. Kantaro was half laying on Haruka with the tengu's right arm on his waist while his left was still gripping on the human's left arm. "I…I…" His tears had stopped due to the earlier surprise.

"What if I do?" Haruka repeated the question, demanding an answer out of Kantaro's mouth. He wanted to hear it. He wanted to hear Kantaro admitted that he…

"I will be happy," was the short abrupt answer from Kantaro's mouth. It was a lie, an obvious lie. "For you both," he added somehow heart brokenly. His tears swelled up again and threatened to fall at any time. Yet, he held back. He had to…

The tengu seemed to tell it was a lie, and he slowly sat up with Kantaro half leaning on his chest. "Then why are you crying?" he asked, turning Kantaro around. Yes, Kantaro was unable to refrain himself from crying again, and tears rolled down profusely. For a long time, Kantaro did not reply, yet he pleaded with small whines.

"Please stop asking…Let me go…Just act like nothing happened," he had said, yet it was useless. Haruka would not listen to him, at least not this time unless he got the answer he wanted to hear. The tengu would not push his master too far normally, but today, he had to. He just had to, even if it seemed cruel to his master.

"Tell me the truth," he simply stated, unaware that he had tightened the grip on Kantaro's wrist.

The tone in Haruka's voice was different from usual, and Kantaro knew he would not let him go easily this time. He would let him go afterwards and never come back because he would feel disgusted. He would hate Kantaro. He would leave Kantaro for good. "I don't want you to leave…," finally he admitted. Like Yoko said, he should get the answer, even if it hurt.

"Why?"

"Because you…you are the most important person to me…"

"And?"

"And…and I…I…lo-love you," before Haruka could react, he saw his young master ran out of his room in an extremely fast pace. Satisfied and somehow, relieved, Haruka decided to chase his master. Despite the fact he was short, Kantaro surely could run.

"Kantaro!" he called his master's name in a worried tone, which it was a rare sign. He lost sight of him. Then, he decided to fly to search for Kantaro. Surely it would be easier for him to locate the youth. His wings appeared and he flew off towards the sky. From a distance, he saw a running figure and unmistakably, it was the crimson eyed folklorist. At once, he flew towards the figure and grabbed his waist before he landed. Kantaro tried to struggle, yet all was in vain as the tengu was stronger than him physically.

"I haven't said anything yet," Haruka said, referring to the confession that took place just now in his room. The tone in his voice, his embrace, his stare were all too much for the young exorcist to take. He knew Haruka would reject him, he knew it. He just knew it…

He thought he knew the answer, but he did not. He did not know of it until he felt his lips being occupied by another's. The kiss was short lived, only for a moment although the embrace was still there. It was enough to stop Kantaro from doing anything reckless. And it was enough for him to know the answer. "Ha…Haruka…," apparently, he was shocked.

The other could not help but grinned at his master's dumbness, which it was so unlike him. "I won't leave your side," was his firm and real reply to Kantaro's question. "I was fond of Yuri, but I fell for you," he added.

"But…you said…"

"There are no more humans and demons, master and slave business now, do they? It is about you and me," Haruka replied, pulling Kantaro closer in his arms.

This was the greatest answer he ever received and Kantaro was too happy to say anything. He would not have guessed that Haruka returned his feelings. Sometimes, Haruka was really a mystery, a puzzle, a very complicated maze. But that was what had drawn Kantaro to him. Haruka was Haruka, and could be replaced by no one else. 'I love you more than anything…,' he thought as he returned the embrace affectionately.

To Haruka, Kantaro was very different from any human he had met before. He truly cared and wanted to be friends with demons out of sincerely. It was up to the point that he would sacrifice himself for them. Just to protect them. And it was what attracted Haruka to Kantaro. Kantaro had the purest heart of all humans. 'I swore to protect you…,' his mind said as he carried Kantaro and flew towards the youth's house.

The moon and certain awaken demon fox were the only witnesses to their promise of love when they flew passed the moon, holding each other tightly in a lovely embrace.

: The End :