April Ramirez

English 4

Period 4

12/1/06

It was funny how things can change depending on your surroundings. When around their classmates and opulent members of their society, who attend festive events to soak in each other's wealth and brown-nose anyone who had the potential of becoming a beneficial asset, they put their walls up. They watched the foolishly vivacious group below them, cringing at the raucous of false-chuckles filling the room. It was always fake. A façade all aristocrats put up, including themselves. When they were introduced to young wealthy girls, the two pasted charming grins on and greeted the women accordingly. When the aforementioned girl would attempt to get to know either of them, they would disclose nothing. The girl had already been repudiated. She never stood a chance. No one did. They always played malicious mind games to push the unworthy away, leaving them again in their own world, just the way they liked it.

In their world, every wall came down, no masks, no acts. There was nothing they could hide from each other when they were alone. It was their own private haven.

Unable to bear the party and its guests any longer, the older boy nudged the other.

"Hikaru?" the younger blinked up at him in question.

"Let's go outside, yeah? This place is so boring, it might rub off on us." He said with a light grin, reaching for Kaoru's hand in a perfunctory manner, despite anyone who would see. Hikaru prudently lead to the exit of the manor, Kaoru having no choice but to follow, not that he would have gone with another option anyway.

The sounds of aristocracy began to fade into nothing as they made their way to the gardens, the moment making Kaoru's heart race, getting a thrill out of the thought that they were running like fugitives to a place of acceptance. Kaoru subconsciously tightened his hold on Hikaru's hand, sending a short jolt of electricity up his arms and a swarm of butterflies to his stomach.

They soon reached a large fountain, and after looking it over, decided it was a valid spot for them to be themselves. Hikaru sat on the edge of the fountain, Kaoru shortly following, settling next to him and resting his head on the older boy's shoulder. Hikaru reached for Kaoru's hand and linked their fingers, sitting in silence. The younger boy allowed a ghost of a smile to grace his features, comfortable in their bubble of peace.

"Kaoru..?"

"Hmm?" the aforementioned boy looked up in question at his best friend.

"Mom has started talking to me about marriage…" he said quietly, looking back into hazel, almost golden, eyes. Kaoru nodded, the smile from before covered a small amount of contrition.

"Yeah…me too. She wants me to marry into a family that'll benefit us. I don't think she's found one yet though." He replied solemnly. Hikaru's grip tightened on Kaoru's hand, a daunted look crossing his face.

"Kaoru, what if…" he began, but couldn't continue. He instead looked away from the face before him in vulnerability, his hand shaking a bit in fear while clasping the other boy's.

Kaoru shook his head, already knowing what his companion wanted to ask, running his thumb over the back of Hikaru's hand in a placating manner.

"We can't worry about that right now. When we started all this we knew that was going to happen eventually, didn't we?"

"Well, that's crap if you ask me!" Hikaru spat, suddenly standing up and clenching his fist.

"Hika—"

"Kaoru, why can't you and I be together?" he said capriciously, already aware of the answer. Kaoru looked at him, smiling sadly at the older boy.

"Because…our love style isn't acceptable."

Hikaru's eyes widened in shock, as if this was the first time this information had been disclosed to him. His face softened as he approached Kaoru, cupping his face with both hands and looking into those amazing golden eyes.

"…But that isn't fair.."

"Life isn't fair. That's just the way things go." Kaoru replied in a gentle half-whisper, leaning into the warmth emitted by Hikaru's hand, placing his own hand over it. Hikaru leaned forward, brushing his lips against Kaoru's in a chaste kiss. He just couldn't understand it. Why were they forbidden? Why is it that the one person who could read him like an open book and understand everything he did wasn't allowed to love him? Because they were too much alike physically? Who decided what kind of love was acceptable or not? Who—

"HIKARU!!"

The two boys suddenly pulled apart, jumping back from each other. Hikaru looked for the source of the voice, sighing in relief to find that his mother had called from further away, unable to see the boys' exchange from her position.

"You should go." Kaoru stated, looking away from the person he had just been showing affection to. Hikaru nodded.

"Yeah. Catch you later?"

"Yeah. See you" Kaoru waved slightly, watching as his most important person trotted over to his mother. And so their time together was over, he thought to himself, brushing a finger across his lips. It was always like that. A fleeting, ephemeral moment in time for the two of them. He couldn't complain. Those moments were to be cherished, for they were lucky to have any in a world where you are always being watched by nosy aristocrats.

"Hikaru! There you are. Come, there's this young lady I want you to meet. She's the daughter of…"

End.