Disclaimer: Characters in this story do not belong to me

CRASH! Yuki always flinched when he hit him. It wasn't that he didn't mean to. Of course he always punched the cat on purpose. If he didn't beat him every time, Kyo would stop trying, and that would mean he'd leave Yuki alone. Maybe even avoid him. Yuki knew he wouldn't be able to stand that. He needed to be near Kyo as often as possible, even if it were just to fight him. Still, by the end of it, Yuki always felt an empty sensation in his stomach.

"Yuki, honestly…the house, think of the house." Shigure whined from behind him, holding his tea in one hand with a pleading look on his face. "The main house stopped paying for repairs, and I'm not making enough to fix a door twice a week." Yuki let out a sigh and apologized half-heartedly.

"DAMN RAT!" Kyo came storming through the door he had just smashed, his eyes aflame with bitter hate. Yuki shook out of his daze and replaced his mask. Disgust. Anger. Annoyance. The cat had to be a nuisance.

"It's your fault for starting a fight so late." Yuki said coolly, "I'm not in the mood for games. I have a test tomorrow, and I need to study before going to bed." Kyo bristled, and if it weren't for Tohru's interception, agreeing hastily with Yuki, they would've started another fight.

"Yes, I forgot! I have to study, too! Don't you have the same test, Kyo?" Kyo frowned, but it wasn't a true face of anger. Kyo was never actually angry when he was around her. Yuki noticed every time he looked at Tohru his features would go soft, and he'd be one step closer to smiling. Yuki couldn't help but feel a thin snake of jealousy circle around him whenever they were together.

"Yeah, yeah." Kyo finally responded, "Test tomorrow, study, study, study. I got it." thumping up the stairs into his room. The other three waited to hear a door slam, but were surprised to hear only the soft click of the door gently sliding closed. Shigure raised his eyebrows in shock.

"Well, look at that. He's showing composure." He said cheerfully. "He may have hope after all." He took a long sip from his cup and grinned at the two children. Tohru turned to Yuki and smiled.

"I believe he's getting better." She chirped optimistically.

"I think so, too, Miss Honda." Yuki answered quietly, "Maybe he's not as stupid as I thought he was." Tohru bit her lip and smiled uncertainly at this response. She never was comfortable with how the two boys addressed each other. Still, she nodded hesitantly and left the living room, mentioning her books upstairs.

"You shouldn't be so cold." Yuki jumped and turned to face Shigure, still standing over him with his cup of tea. "It makes poor Tohru sad when you're mean to Kyo. Maybe you should try and make nice." Yuki pulled a face.

"Make nice?" he asked as bitterly as he could, "With the cat?" Shigure nodded and took another sip of tea. "Why?" Shigure flashed him a pearly smile and shrugged. He mumbled something under his breath, but before Yuki could ask him to repeat himself, the dog slipped into his study and locked the door.

"I have a manuscript I have to finish!" He called out when he sensed Yuki still standing in the doorway, "I cannot be disturbed!" Yuki grumbled, knowing full-well that Shigure was not working on a manuscript, but didn't push it. He had studying to do, after all. He turned on his heel and made his way to his room and studied alone for a few hours, scanning over crinkled stacks of notes and pages in boring workbooks.

After a while, Yuki set down his textbook to look at the clock. 1:30am. Everyone must be asleep by now, even Shigure would've gotten tired. Yuki changed into a pair of pajamas and quietly padded down the hall to get a glass of water. As he crept past the cat's room, he noticed that the window was open. "Stupid cat…" Yuki muttered, automatically wandering over and quietly shutting the window, "you're going to catch a cold that way."

The rat looked at his cousin, who was snoring gently with a textbook laying across his chest and his sheets kicked to his knees. Yuki smiled to himself, knowing that this was the only time he could ever be nice to Kyo without being mocked or punched. He slinked over to Kyo's bed and pulled his blankets to his chin, picking up the textbook and placing it on the floor. Kyo purred softly, murmuring something unintelligible that ended in Tohru's name.

Yuki blushed. Was he so effeminate that he could be mistaken for Miss Honda? An idea suddenly sprang up into his mind and before he could stop himself, he outstretched his hand to stroke Kyo's hair, being immediately reminded of a kitten's fur.

"Why do you hate me, Kyo?" Yuki asked wearily, "why do you constantly force me to fight you?" Kyo, of course did not respond. Yuki dropped his hand to Kyo's cheek, bracing himself for when the other boy woke up. When the cat didn't stir, Yuki took it a step further and knelt down, lightly brushing his lips against Kyo's mouth.

Yuki pulled away instantly, out of both fear and embarrassment. His cheeks reddened as he watched Kyo's face contort slightly in his sleep. "K-Kyo?" Yuki asked tentatively, his gut twisting a little. Kyo made a quiet noise in his throat, but made no other sign of regaining consciousness. In the back of Yuki's mind, he knew he should probably leave while he was still undiscovered. However, when would he ever get this chance again? Surely not while the stupid cat was awake. Now was just too perfect.

Yuki bowed his head and pressed his lips against Kyo's bare shoulder, slowly leading himself up to the redhead's jaw line. Kyo let out a low moan and subconsciously craned his neck into Yuki's touch. "Tohru…" Kyo breathed softly, still not roused from his sleep. Yuki paused and bit his lip. He was beginning to realize how he was taking advantage of Kyo asleep like this. He took a step back and turned to leave, but was stopped when Kyo let out another sigh. "I love you."

Yuki felt his eyes suddenly stinging with uncharacteristic tears. He leaned over and kissed Kyo's cheek before putting his lips to the other's ear. "I love you, too, you stupid cat." Kyo bolted upright, but by the time his eyes had adjusted to the darkness, his bedroom was empty.