For: ouran (underscore) contest community at livejournal - "chocolate sauce" oneshot challenge – won first place!

Characters: the whole host club, but mostly Tamaki,

Word count: 821

Summary: Tamaki works himself into a long-winded monologue over something small, as usual.

Sweet Burning

He could barely contain his disbelief, which is to say, he didn't even try to.

"Outrageous!" Tamaki proclaimed with a dramatic sigh, a hand wisping over his forehead and curling into his hair. "How could such an evil and devious thing occur under my paternal scrutiny? Crime, it is! Just a horrible crime!"

With another wretched howl, Tamaki spun around jabbed an index finger into the space before him.

"The culprits!" he announced righteously.

Looking up from their seat at the club's makeshift, but stylishly designed kitchen counter, the twins blinked at the finger before their noses. They bared their teeth simultaneously.

"It was worth it," they replied to their accusation, together.

"Fiends!" Tamaki dubbed them.

"That's their charm. It sells them quite nicely," Kyouya noted absent-mindedly, perched on a stool beside the twins.

"But nonetheless!" the host club king continued, "I will not stand here silently while my daughter suffers in agony!"

Haruhi fixed the cloth around her hair, and answered, "I'm not suffering," and promptly goes back to stirring what was bound to be a delicious concoction.

Up went the hand. "Oh, the life of a brilliant, but underprivileged commoner," Tamaki moaned in sympathy. "What pain our own Haruhi must endure! Look how she sits there, trying to stop her body from writhing in discomfort, so as to appear normal in front of her abundantly wealthy friends! For, if she shows any sign of weakness, she risks ridicule and alienation from her peers. How horrible for dear, dear Haruhi!"

"Tamaki, nobody is ridiculing or alienating Haruhi. And, should any physical harm come to Haruhi, I have a medical team on speed dial that would arrive within a minute," Kyouya reminded him, but he was ignored in favor of dramatic flair.

"How horrible!" Tamaki repeated, holding out caring hands to the girl. "If only I could have prevented the fiends' grievous actions before they could have hurt you in this way!"

"Eh?" Haruhi glanced up from her stirring. "I'm hurt?"

Tamaki nearly fainted.

"She endures so much pain that she doesn't even notice it!" he said, with wonder. "Oh, how our little girl suffers. She does not know what could be happening to her body at this very instance!"

Tamaki gestured wildly around the kitchen. "It is not enough that Haruhi is the midst of adolescence, her body changing in ways that she can't control or fathom. To make it worse, she masquerades as a male, further confusing her identity as a blossoming woman! Oh no, it is not enough! Now, she pains so much that she is not even aware that her skin could be burning off!"

Haruhi stopped stirring. "Burning off?"

Tamaki pointed grandly at the twins once again. "These rascals— these animals— these monsters— no, these devils could not contain their horrid rambunctious selves, and disturbed Haruhi as she made a sweet treat for the club! They swept through her delicate actions, and caused such a mess that they hurt Haruhi."

This time, he gestured at Haruhi, in particular, her face.

"This brown marks the spot, if I may say so boldly!" Tamaki narrated. "As Haruhi stirred the melting chocolate, those malicious twins dipped their dirty, germ-infested fingers in and then touched Haruhi's face! With hot, melting chocolate!"

He stepped behind Haruhi and put his arms around her shoulders, careful not to block her view of the mixing bowl.

"Oh, how it burns you," he sniffed tenderly into her hair.

Haruhi said nothing. She wiped at her cheek, inspected the dark, brown smudge on her finger, and licked it thoughtfully.

"This is a little sweeter than I intended," she commented. "Do you mind, Hunny-senpai?"

"Nope!" Hunny replied cheerfully, sitting on Mori's shoulders. They stood in a corner, banished there to keep Hunny from eating up all the chocolate sauce ingredients.

"Oh, okay then." Haruhi went back to stirring.

Placing his chin upon her lovely shoulder, Tamaki whimpered, "Are you all right, Haruhi?"

Without turning around, she said, "The chocolate isn't that hot, senpai. And don't you think I'd be in even more pain if I had waited for you to finish to get medical attention?"

Tamaki's eyes widened with this realization. He opened his mouth to beg for her loving forgiveness, which he did not deserve, of course, but Haruhi had already forgotten.

"Do you want to try, senpai?" she asked, holding a spoon of chocolate sauce before him.

His face brightened and he immediately opened his mouth. The taste was heavenly, as was any food that came from Haruhi's hands. Tamaki could sense the twins radiating jealously for Haruhi's favor, but he didn't care.

"Oh, my daughter, it is—" Tamaki began.

"I think it's ready," Haruhi cut in thoughtfully. "Thanks for your help, senpai."

Tamaki swelled with pride. But before he could wrap his arms around her in joy, she left her stool, and offered the chocolate sauce for everyone else to try.