"once in a lifetime

means there's no second chance

so I believe that you and me

should grab it while we can."


Chapter Thirteen

I chuckled slightly at Hiro's antics to impress Kisa. The fact that she wasn't paying a bit of attention to him made me almost laugh out loud, but knowing the string of events that would turn into, I decided not to mention anything. It was too good of a day to be ruined by that little brat of a boy.

"Sissy! Sissy look! I picked all of them for you!" Kisa said her voice strong showing Tohru all the flowers she picked from the family garden. Kisa rose to the tips of her toes to ensure that Tohru could see them from her chair.

"Careful, Don't want her to roll away again." Hiro snickered, from where I was sitting it was easy to just reach out with my leg and send a mighty kick that would send him on his ass, but knowing the look and sound of disapproval I would get from Tohru, I settled for throwing a tiny pebble his direction.

"Hiro! Don't be mean to Tohru!" Momiji shouted ruefully at Hiro.

"No no!! its fine, he's right actually. This time I promise to steer this thing better!" Tohru exclaimed with a hand in the air.

Tohru has been confined to a wheel chair until she can control her legs fully. It's been a week? Maybe two since she left the hospital. And at least three weeks since the she woke up. She can walk, or rather hobble around, but I felt safer for when she was in a wheel chair...except that took some getting used to. The wheel chair I mean.

In the beginning Tohru couldn't really speak coherently. So when her wheel chair and her in it accidentally started rolling down the slight incline of the side walk, only the strangled sound from her throat alerted us when she was already halfway down the block. Needless to say Kyou and Yuki practically flung themselves down the street after her. The event would have been quite comical, had my nerves didn't get the best of me.

I heard Tohru giggle and look on appreciatively at Kisa and her flowers, "Thank you Kisa, They're really pretty!"

"I can braid them in your hair for you sissy! It'll be really pretty!" Kisa exclaimed, without even waiting, she hopped onto the bench in I was sitting on, which was also right next to Tohru and her chair and started braiding the flowers into it.

"Careful Kisa! Don't fall." Tohru said worriedly.

"I got her." I said, angling myself so that if she did indeed fall, I could catch her quickly. Tohru smiled at me. God, how I loved her smiles. Loved. Even just thinking the word made blood rush to my face. Ever since Tohru woke up, I've been with her constantly, yet never actually alone with her. For this I was grateful, yet also quite irritated. If it wasn't Yuki it was Kyo, if it wasn't Kyo it was Shigure, if it wasn't Shigure is was Ritsu, if it wasn't any of them, it was always Kisa, Hiro, AND Momiji. The only reason I even tolerated Hatori was because he was Tohru's doctor.

There were so many things I wanted to tell her. About when she was gone, about how crazy I went. About how I pretended to forget the kiss. Oh the kiss. Dammit. Do I have to be so stupid sometimes?

"There! All done." Kisa said tilting her head examining her work. It was actually very well done. The daisies she twisted and braided in her hair resembled that of a tiara of flowers in Tohru's hair. It made her look so serene.

"Thank you so much Kisa! I feel just like a princess." Tohru said, feeling the flowers in her hair with a gentle smile.

The familiar ring of the ice cream man came into my ears and Momiji and Hiro were already on the race to greet it.

"Go on Kisa!" Tohru encouraged her. Kisa left with them, leaving Tohru and I alone for a what I know would only be a brief moment.

I looked at Tohru, she looked so healthy, so beautiful, so innocent. I wanted her to stay this way forever. She looked so happy. Then she turned to look at me. I could feel the color in my cheeks rise up again, and being the coward I turned into, I swiftly looked away as if only glancing at the scenery. And I knew she knew, because she started giggling.

I saw her hands reach for mine in the corner of my eyes, and found it to be true when I felt her small hands slightly tug at mine. At the moment I felt her, I firmly set her hand in mine, what I didn't notice was her other hand reaching for my face pulling it to look her in the eyes.

Tohru's Point of View

"Hey there lazy." I said sticking my tongue out at him and was graced with his smile, which was replaced with a fake look of shock, "Lazy? You have severely hurt my persons with that statement."

"Oh?" I said, laughing at his words. When I quieted I noticed how peaceful everything was. The sun was shining. The air was cool. Things were almost in dream-like sequence. I felt the warmth of his hand close on mine and I searched his eyes for answers to the questions in my head.

"Haru?" I asked tilting my head slightly, seeing if he was even paying attention.

"hmm?" he murmured.

I bit back on my tongue, knowing that whatever was going to come out was going to most likely be pretty forward, not able to be taken back, and very embarrassing on my part if my assumptions are as incorrect as I think them to be. Who said to assume is to make and ass of both you and me?

"Well..." I said, taking my hand away from his cheek and withdrawing my hand from his. I placed them on my lap and fiddled with my fingers. I felt slightly stupid.

"Are you okay Tohru? Whats that matter? Do I need to get Hatori!?" Haru asked going into instant panic mode. He jumped off the bench and keeled down in front of me in the my wheel chair. Giving me a once over with his eyes to make sure of any inconsistencies. Ever since I got back from the hospital, the things I did that were even slightly questionable sent people on edge.

"Haru! Calm down!" I laughed lightly, not wanting him to get embarrassed at his show of concern. Now that he was eye level with me and directly in front of my gave me perfect view of his face. Worrying seeped out of his eyes and I felt guilty.

"I just wanted to well...you know talk." I said fiddling with my hands again. Nervous habit I newly acquired.

"Go on." Haru said waiting patiently for what I had to say. His eyes made me lose myself and whatever I was thinking, but I looked down at my hands instead. I felt nervous. This was really the first time in weeks we've been alone together. And I feel like...confused.

"Ever since, you know the hospital and the weeks of me now being able to say anything, it gave me a lot of time to think." I started off, "...and well, I've realized sometimes we've only got that once in a lifetime moment to set things right, to make sure you get your happy ending."

I took a deep breath.

"And I want to make sure I have mine, completely regret free...so...Haru?" I said began with a quivering voice from nerves, then steeled myself for the question I was about to ask and the answers I wasn't too sure I was going to receive.

"Haru...What are we?" I asked strongly, not looking him directly in the face, but the to flowers beyond him. In the background I could see the confusion written all over his face. I felt my heart beat faster, I felt the color rush to my face. I felt completely stupid.

"Wait...I mean...well...What am I to you Haru?" I couldn't look at him. I felt like if I looked at him my walls would crumble. I felt like if I looked at him I wouldn't be able to bear it if the answers was nothing. I felt like if I looked at him I would lose all my resolve. He didn't speak.

He didn't speak for quite a few moments.

In that instant. That once in a lifetime moment, I felt like I royally screwed up, but I wasn't ready to let this be end. I wasn't willing to let this be my happy ending.

"Remember that day when we were at the park? You don't remember it but...you kissed me. And...well...I..." I paused. My head was almost completely turned to the right of me where a lovely set of flowers were placed by Kisa on the bench, "I...haven't been able to get it out of my head." I finished softly.

He still said nothing. Humility was beginning to bear down on my shoulders.

"You brought me back. You brought me back when I was sleeping. I...could feel you. I could feel you close by. This may all sound really stupid and I'm not even sure what I'm saying and maybe I'm just being stupid, I don't even really understand I-" Take deep breaths, I mentally reminded myself. I suddenly felt so self conscious. I felt...scared. Scared of rejection. I really wish I would think twice before I said such silly things.

I didn't even finish my sentence. It was only my nervous prattling. Why wasn't he saying anything? I couldn't bare to look at his face. Why hasn't he said anything at all? Is this...Is this rejection? What is this?

"Haru...I ask you again...What am I to you?" I sucked in a whoosh of air as I asked yet again. I felt like my hairs were standing on ends. I felt him shift slightly in front of me.

He stilled for a couple more minutes, then reached forward to me with his hands, and gently lifted my face up to look at him, still kneeling in front of me. He held my face so gently with his hands and holding me with his eyes. I felt like his eyes were sucking me into them body and soul. Then slowly. Ever so slowly, his face came closer to mine.



So close.

I could feel his lips so close, so close, yet not touching. But his eyes still help me trapped in them.

"You asked me what you are to me..." He said, I could feel the warmth of his breath on my face.

"But it's impossible for me to describe in words.." He continued, I felt his nose brush the tip of mine ever so lightly.

"This is what you are to me Tohru." He said before closing the gap between our lips. He held my face firm, yet gently, bringing one of his hands down behind my head twirling it in my hair. His lips were like electric on mine, I could feel his want, his need, his being on me. Kissing him made the world around us stop. I could no longer hear the music of the ice cream truck, I could no longer see the beautiful flowers. I just felt him and me. Together. He broke away sooner than what I have liked. He left me gasping for air.

"You are the world to me. I'm not good with words, I can't describe what you are to me, but I promise, I will make it known to you Tohru..." he accented my name with a kiss on my forehead, then pressing out foreheads together bringing his hands down to hold me in a tight embrace, His smile was all that I needed to make it known that he cared. Only his smile.

And just like that I felt complete. We were two hearts intertwined as one and it took us a damnedest long time to get here I thought with a smile.

Momiji's Point of View

"Hiro! Can you please shut up?" I whispered over to the snorting Hiro. Kisa was completely entranced with what was going on before her.

"Hiro! Shhh!" Kisa whispered to her companion. Not once removing her eyes from the scene.

"hmmm...I wonder if Haru-chan would be mad if he caught us." I wondered out loud as we were currently spying on their scene behind the bushes.

"Psh, Thats more like the understatement of the year." Hiro snickered once again.

"Hey! You guys. What are you doing over there?" Yuki shouted from far behind us. I smacked my head in exasperation. Did anyone know how to correctly spy on people!?

"YUKI! SHHH!! Just get over here!" I whispered loud enough for him to hear me and frantically waved him over. He walked over slowly, he must've known something was up...maybe it was the fact that we were all staring at something with out head through the bushes. He crouched down to match out level.

"What are we looking at now?" He asked quietly.

"Something that will possibly cost us our lives if Haru knew." I said back eyes still glued to the scene.

"huh...oh really...about Haru?" Then he stuck his head through the bushes too, I should have known the reaction that was about to come. Yuki became stiff. He pulled his head out of the bushes in almost like an robotic like movement. Eyes turned into dots. Shock filled him to the brim.

"Yuki what the hell are you doing stupid mouse? Aren't you too old to be a peeping tom? Perverted rat! That's illegal for you!" Kyo shouted from across the street. Yuki didn't even react. I wasn't sure if was over the initial shock just yet.

"Now now Kyo! Lets not loose our temper. How would our flower take it if she knew you've gone back to fighting." Shigure said with a bit of his theatrical antics to add to his words.

"Where is Tohru? I bought more books on fruits baskets for her! Since I'm not really sure which kind to buy her, I just bought more books on them!" Ritsu cried out.

"...Books...on fruits? Really now you-" Shigure was cut off by my frantic waving for him to come over. I didn't even waste my breath I just stuck my head back into the bushes. And after a few rustling noises I knew the did too.

"WHAT THE-" quick thinking was the only thing that saved us here. Hiro clamped over Kyo's mouth before too much damage was done, probably only doing so for Kisa's sake, but yet Kyo was much stronger that when he stood up above the bushes he brought Hiro up with him and flung him off his face.

"HATSUHARU GET YOUR FUCKING HANDS OFF HER!" Kyo screeched like a banshee. Only thing holding him back was Shigure with the help of Hiro.

"KYO! WHY'D YOU HAVE TO GO AND RUIN IT! THEY WERE HAVING A MOMENT!" I whined loudly in his ear standing up too.

Tohru's face went completely red. Haru looked dumbfounded. Which quickly turned into anger. Which quickly turned into Black Haru. Which quickly turned into screaming. Which quickly turned into me announcing to everyone:

"Run now. Run fast."

Apparently the only ones who understood the trouble they were in was me, Kisa, and Hiro. As we rushed off the scene. The last thing we saw was Black Haru rush over to the hideout where a still shell-shocked Yuki crouched, a pissed off Kyo stood, and a completely confused Ritsu and Shigure swayed. The last thing we heard was Kyo's loud shouting and Haru's even louder punches.

Later That Day

Tohru's Point of View

"Yuki...?" I asked the robotic-like figure pushing my wheelchair. Shigure had encouraged Yuki to wheel me away from the commotion Kyo and Haru were making before I could protest. We were now on some random street in some random part of the city, a good few blocks away from the hospital. So far away that I was no longer able to hear Haru's and Kyo's yelling.

"Uh?" was his monosyllabic reply, and I turned around to look at him, his eyes still dot-like, his walking robotic, and his face locked into a state of shock. I cringed.

"Are you sure you're okay Yuki?" I asked, knowing the real answer.

"Uh." came his reply once again, thats when I started to worry.

"Yuki, you know I was going to tell you myself..." I started off, thinking of a way to explain the earlier...scene. He stopped pushing my chair. In front of a familiar place. Yuki didn't seem to notice. His eyes were still...at little off.

"Uhhh?" he questioned, I tried turning my body around to face him, but found myself unable to, moving around still

"Yuki, hold on," I said as I took hold of the wheels and with much difficulty swerved myself around to face him. Yuki still looked shocked and dazed. I sighed.

"Okay, now Yuki," I said taking hold of the front of his shirt, bringing him down to eye level. "Nothing has changed. We are...still friends right?" I asked hesitantly, but Yuki snapped out of his reverie at my question.

"Tohru! Of course we are, to even think you thought for a second that-"

"Oh Yuki dear!! My darling baby brother! That you came to visit me brings out the shine in my eyes!" came the sing-song voice of Ayame.

Yuki had stopped us right in front of Ayame's fabric store. I had realized it the moment we came, but Yuki, who was still in mode-breakdown, didn't. The changes Yuki went through in the last minute was almost comical. From robot, to shock, to annoyance with a hint of anger.

"Tohru dear you should have told me you were coming to visit! Come come now! Let's get you inside, you too baby brother!" He sang, immediately taking control of my wheel chair and whisking me away into his store, leaving a dumbfounded and albeit annoyed young man standing outside. Yuki begrudgingly walked inside, bombarded with all the color and patterns of the store.

Yuki's Point of View

I watched as my stupid good for nothing brother steal Tohru away and I held myself with my teeth gritted. He brought us to the back room with the couches and I sat crossly as Ayame and Tohru had some sort of animated conversation. My patience was slowly wearing, why were we even here?

I looked at Tohru, she looked so happy. Her smile made the room brighter and it made me relax a little in this...place. Tohru and Ayame kept on talking while I sat. I couldn't help but watch them. Tohru had always been so nice and reserved, but now, it felt as if she had become free. It felt like she genuinely loved herself, her friends, family, life. I never met anyone like her.

My face grew hot when I realized all I could think about was her. "Yuki dear! Are you okay brother of mine?" Ayame asked, getting up and inching dangerously closer and closer to my face.

"What do you want now?" I asked a little harshly, Ayame had that spark in his eye that I particularly did not like.

"Do you not feel well?" Tohru asked innocently, wheeling herself to my side. She was so close to me, holding up her hand to my forehead. She looked so concerned and it made me feel warm again.

"I'm fine Tohru, really I am." I said softly.

"We should go to Hatori anyway, just in case! Let's go back to the hospital." She said decisively, her maternal instincts kicking in, waving her arms around as if to signify that her word was final, and I just shook my head and smiled at her antics. She really was too much sometimes.

"We had better check on Haru and Kyo too." She said as an afterthought and my face fell, Tohru may be very different now but oblivious as ever to the subtle things, Ayame on the other hand did notice. I had forgotten. Tohru was Haru's. Haru was Tohru's. They completed each other in some obscure way, I don't know how I missed it, maybe it's me who was the oblivious one.

"Hmm...Well, I guess I'll have to made due with the amount of Tohru time I got." Ayame said with a dramatic sigh. I gritted my teeth again adding the roll of the eye. Tohru just laughed as Mine took control of her wheelchair, bringing her to the store area, leaving me alone with my for lack of better words...brother.

I got up from the couch and went to follow Tohru and Mine, but a hand stopped me on my shoulder. I didn't turn around.

"Tohru loves Haru a lot doesn't she." Ayame asked softly, being the most serious I've ever seen him...ever.

"How am I suppose to know." I said roughly, shaking him off my shoulder.

"She's happy with him Yuki." He said more clearly. I clenched my jaw shut. I said nothing to him. What was there to say? Nothing was said for a few moments. I wondered why I hadn't left yet, but I knew, I knew that what he had to say, I needed to hear.

"Just be happy for her."

"I am." I said a little loud, Ayame just made a tsking sound, which made me swerve around to face him annoyed.

"I am!" I yelled at him. Ayame looked so sad...maybe not sad, more like pity. It only angered me more. I stared him down, silently daring him to say something else.

"You're not." He said simply, breaking out gaze and walking past me to the door outside to the store, hesitating.

"Be her friend, be her support, but you can't be Haru." He said before leaving me standing here. It was him who walked away from me I silently mused in my head. First time it had ever happened. It was odd. He said things I didn't want to hear, he spoke truth. Regaining whatever left composure I had, I walked out into the store, Ayame already back in his happy place.

All of the sudden Haru came barging through the doors, eyes frantically searching the store till his eyes fell on Tohru. He breathed a sigh of relieve and fell to one knee in front of Tohru panting from his sprint. Tohru just giggled and played with the top of his head. Her eyes were shining. I saw Ayame give me a pointed look.

When I saw Tohru with Haru, Ayame's words hit me. Tohru was happy. She was smiling and laughing. I saw the way she looked at him, how he looked at her. It looked right. I could never be Haru, but I could always just be there for her. She was radiating joy and maybe that was all I ever really wanted. A small smile came to my face when I saw Tohru lean into Haru's embrace.

Ayame was by my side again, just standing there. Not saying anything for a first. Watching the scene nonchalantly with me.

"I understand now." I whispered. Ayame just nodded.

"As I knew you would." he said after the moment was over.

"Haru-kun! Your a strapping young man! Could you be a dear an help me with this box?" Ayame sang, back in annoying mode, he magically had a big box next to him...unless it was always there.

Haru shrugged and picked up the box, Ayame guiding him to the back room, leaving me with Tohru. I sighed, shaking my head, I guess I had never truly known Ayame. I walked to stand in front of her, she looked up at me expectantly. I coughed to clear my throat.

"Tohru...I am happy for you." Tohru looked at me understandingly. She looked like she knew.

"I am sorry it too me so long to say it." I said with a small smile.

"Friends?" She asked, twinkle in her eyes.

"Always." I said smiled, I felt at peace with it. Then as soon as it came it ended as Haru came back with Ayame. I don't think he really saw me or acknowledged my presence. I was pretty much forgotten, I didn't mind. Haru ad Tohru went back to the hospital.

"You did the right thing." Ayame was next to me again, I started to wonder how he did that.

"I did what I wanted, nothing more, nothing less." I said clearly, crossing my arms, refusing to look at his know-it-all face.

"Come now brother! Mine made us tea, take a seat if you would and let your wonderful brother tell you all about his day!" Ayame said twirling around with sparkles coming out of nowhere.

"and I would want to do that because?" I said bored already with his change of attitude.

"Because we're brothers!" Ayame said, pulling me into the back room where Mine prepared the tea. And for once, I didn't resist. After all, we are brothers.

Awe almost done here :) Review please!!!!!