Spoilers: Definite spoilers for the beach episode, but also spoilers concerning Tamaki and Kyouya's backgrounds through volume 6 of the manga.

Disclaimer: I don't own it…that would be Hatori Bisco.

Checks and Balances

Sciathan File

He had called her interesting…and she had called him "kind."

In his own way, Kyouya supposed he was kind, but not in any conventional manner…and the fact that Fujioka Haruhi had noticed even a bit of that was quite astounding.

Thus far, very few people had found anything that could be definitively labeled "kind" about him. Kindness was not a trait he overtly attempted to cultivate…certainly, politeness, etiquette, courtesy…all of these were advantageous. Kindness, however, was a trait that allowed for weakness to develop.

It was something he could not generally afford, even if it was for someone like Haruhi.

However, her comment did show her ignorance of exactly how intricate his plans could be. She was interesting in that she noticed there was one…but not wholly aware of its depths.

Kindness was not something he could merely show flippantly to someone like Fujioka Haruhi…not it was reserved for a select group of people. This was where Haruhi misunderstood the direction of his actions entirely. Certainly, he hoped that he gained at least some benefit from the exercise.

But it was not for her own direct benefit that he had been what she called "kind."

No, it was for him…because, in general, Suoh Tamaki needed so much help.

And he was one of the few that Kyouya had chosen to be kind to.

In this regard, Haruhi failed to see the full extent of his kindness. Indeed, the incident during their trip to the beach had merely been one of the more overt layers of that plan. The more nuanced levels had been firmly in place since almost the first time that she had entered the Third Music Room. In fact, he had been executing it ever since Tamaki had taken an interest in her.

That instance was when Kyouya decided he needed to invest some of his own brand of kindness into the situation for however long was necessary.

Unfortunately for his accounting practices, Tamaki's interest in Haruhi didn't wane at all. In fact, anyone who was not Haruhi and Tamaki themselves could see that the self-proclaimed King of the Host Club showed more than interest in her…

However, Tamaki was, in a great many situations, wholly incapable of both realizing this fact himself, and even less capable of showing this to Haruhi.

And Haruhi, who was a rare individual who did not care for the guilded trappings of the club, would certainly be gone as soon as her debt was paid.

But it was no coincidence that she was often made to do tasks that required delicate, expensive items that were mysteriously placed in precarious situations. Nor was it a coincidence that famously difficult girls regularly managed to designate her as their host…

No, tasks were distributed so that small accidents might occur.

In this way, it was entirely conceivable that Haruhi, despite her natural ability to handle her guests and her steadily increasing number of designations, might have to retain a position as a host…until, perhaps, Suoh Tamaki graduated.

This was Kyouya's "kindness." His "playing the part of the villan," as she had so eloquently put it, was merely another extension to this end.

Tamaki had been the first one to change, not only his own life (although he would only grudgingly admit this, if at all) but the lives of everyone in the Host Club.

Haruhi was interesting because she had the ability to do the same…albeit rather obliviously. She had won the adoration of Hunny, the silent protection of Mori, been able to cleave the Twins' small world in two...

As for Tamaki…even Kyouya himself was incapable of predicting what her impact final would be on him.

Kyouya had to admit that she even had impacted he himself…she had managed to capture his interest. Because Haruhi was, above all, enigmatic. She appeared blunt and practical to a fault, but this description lacked some essential part of her character. Something Kyouya could not even begin to identify,

It was this quality that made her appealing.

Few people would use the word "kind" when another person was hovering over them in that manner. But she had recognized that. She had seen him in that moment as a "kind" person…even though that kindness couldn't be for her in the end.

It was too much of a liability. As a third son, kindness of that sort was something he could not afford.

Instead, he chose to help Tamaki…who could not help himself.

It was a more controlled, less dangerous form of kindness. A form more suited to him.

Kyouya had already projected what would happen if his help finally paid off – certainly it would have implications for the dynamics of the Host Club, but also on a personal level for his friend.

The Suoh family had a long history of pure blood…one that had already been tainted by Tamaki himself. It was doubtful that Tamaki's Grandmother would allow their lineage to become further diluted. Of course this was not something that Tamaki had quite realized.

Kyouya himself, however, was perfectly able to see this.

But Tamaki was Tamaki.

And Tamaki was one who was truly kind, to the point that it might became an exploitable weakness, and, if not for Kyouya's own subtle interventions, almost had a several points.

Tamaki was one who could afford, simply by nature of who he was, to be kind. He had the ability to look beyond these implications – one's that Kyouya himself found that he couldn't - simply because Tamaki was Tamaki.

The kindness that Kyouya was capable of showing was contained in checks and balances and bottom lines that were so spread out that only one person had even identified it as being kind…and only barely.

Indeed, Fujioka Haruhi was interesting…and for that reason, and for Tamaki's sake, he would make sure that the Host Club retained her services for an entirely plausible amount of time.

Because he was "kind."

Fin

A/N: This fic came out of a line in the manga after the famous Kyouya teaches Haruhi by playing the villan scene…that was very sadly cut out of the anime. After this scene Kyouya says something to the effect of "He needs so much help" as he is walking off…which struck me as being very interesting…also the act itself seemed more overt than Kyouya usually is…so I thought I would do a little introspective piece exploring all of these thoughts.

Anyways, I greatly appreciate any comments you have and I do try to respond personally to all of them. That said, thank you for reading!