Disclaimer : I do not, have not, and will never own any parts of the Fruits Basket, but if I did a certain little German cross would be all mine.

Any-hoo, this is the first story I've written in a while, so, ya... I enjoy constructive cristism. The key word being constructive. Remember what your mothers told you, if you can't say anything nice don't say anything at all. I would love to hear from every one who reads this story. Let me know what you think, what you dislike, and what could be improved.
I really hope you enjoy the story. I happen to be quite proud of my little story.

your loving author
(ten points for anyone who knows what ttfn stands for, what the heck, you'll even get a hero cookie)

Sgt. Sammy


He had said it would never happen again. He promised. She had been given his word. If she could not trust that, what could she trust?
She had given him everything. Every part of her body and soul. Her heart and her submission. And now all she was left with was her tears. Tears that pained all those that surrounded her.
With every tear that she shed, it killed the ones who loved her.
They were going to be together forever, weren't they?
Weren't they?

And now she sat in the darkest corner of her room dully looking out the window while the t.v. continued its consistent droning. She just sat there, sat there and immersed herself in her own grief.
The only thing she could do was go over and over again what had happened. What had she done to loose his favour? What had she done to drive him to another? Didn't he love her? Isn't that what he said?

One of the things of seclusion was you memorized every moment of every sound. When the door creaked open, it was all she needed to hope. She sprang to her feet and dashed to the opening of the hall, just hoping enough that he might be there.

Unfortunately, it would take more then hoping to have him there.
In his place stood Momiji, his cousin.
It didn't take a genius to see the crestfallen look on Tohru's face. The face that had been light up expectantly just moments before now returned to its previous state.
And it killed him.

Years before, many, many years before, Tohru had been the bright spot, that by just gazing upon would light up anyone's dreary life. How there was as much light as a dim 5 watt light bulb.

"You should go, Kyo doesn't like it when other men are in the house….he'll get mad." Tohru now moved slowly and painfully towards the door to close it.

Momiji's slim, but fit frame refused to budge. He had watched, watched all this time. His heart breaking to such an extent, that he was sure that if he didn't get Tohru out of this mess he would be sure to die with her. He had no problem over powering her fatigued figure as he moved in past her weakly protesting arms.

He had to break her out of her delusions. It had been nearly a year.
Kyo wasn't coming back.

And it was time for her to find the ones who loved her again.

To find love again.

By the look of her sunken cheeks, and the dark circles under her eyes, she had neither eaten or sleep well in along time.

It was like this every week when he came to check up on her.

The rest of her friends that she had refused to see from the very beginning have all but vanished into the world, leaving her all alone.

If it wasn't for his persistence, she would simply wither away.

He gently steered her towards the table and sat her down. He went to the cupboard to get some dishes.

He cast a glance into the sink. A lone drinking glass rested there. No other remains of any form of movement resided.

Her gentle protests rose quietly from her mouth. It was all he could do not to throw the plate he was holding at the large framed picture of Tohru and Kyo.

How dare he ruin her? This one beautiful and wonderful person. For years Momiji had watched Tohru sit through his long absences, his adulterous ways, and eventually the horrible bruises.

He had to make her see.

He had too…

He placed down food for her. And watched her eat silently, without emotion. It was almost as if she was just making the motions of eating, but not really eating.

He had to get her talking again, had to get her to do something. Get her out, or at least fully dressed.

If the situation hadn't been so severe Momiji would have had a laugh at Tohru's misshaped appearance.

He sat there the entire time, watching her eat. Not making a word. If she wanted to talk, she would. Some things you just can't force upon a person, no matter how much wellbeing you wish.

Or hope you want to give.

As she finished her meal, she looked at him, and he swore that he saw a flicker of old happiness return.

It may have only been for a second, but she had the slightest of smiles on her face.

As she tried to get up to put the dishes in the sink, Momiji intercepted her and made her sit down again.

As he was washing the dishes, for once oblivious to everything around him but the motion of cleaning the few plates used. Tohru was looked down at her hands.

What she saw was skin stretched too tightly over too much bone. She saw bones that begged for love and maintenance. And for only a flicker of a second, she saw the pain that she was inflicting upon herself and others.

As she looked up, she saw Momiji's back. Never had a back looked so big. As if it was shielding her from something.

As if it were protecting her.

By now Momiji had finished her pathetic accumulation of dishes and was walking towards the door.

Tohru's eyes went wide.

He couldn't leave.

He couldn't leave her alone.

She didn't want to be alone.

She needed him.

She wanted only him.

He was saying something now, but she couldn't hear him.

Weeks and months of sleep deprivation and self neglect was making her weak.

But as he turned to go she shot her hand out to stop him.

That was, before falling out of her chair and on to the floor. It was now that her body would make her yield to its wishes and have her sleep.

All through out this sleep all she could see was a back. The back of someone walking away, the shape of the back changed constantly.

At times, it was a big wide back, being very close to her.

And at others it was a thin and distorted back, so far away that she couldn't even reach her arm out to touch it.

She tried.

And it was with this motion that she shot straight up in bed confused and disoriented of her surroundings.

She didn't notice the warmth of the person lying next to her.

She kept her eyes clenched tight.

For the first time in the year that Kyo had left, she wasn't wishing it was him.

She wanted the only person who seemed to care about what would happen to her.

About whether she would live or die.

With shocking realization she realized that she wanted him.

She wanted her Momiji.

She felt stupid, and immediately cursed herself for evening imagining the possibilities.

Love does not work one-sided.

She could painfully see that now.

She opened her eyes.

There was no one there.

Momiji did not love her, of that she was certain.

And with almost as sudden as it had came, an immense sadness welled up inside of her.

Harsh and raking cries came from her throat. Slowly at first, making it sound as if she just wanted to yell, and then so fast it was hard to breath.

The tears she had never cried were now flowing down her face into her upturned hands.

She once again looked at the neglect in this pair of hands. Of the years of pain that was in them.

She wished that her tears could erase those years.

She wanted new hands.

She wanted a new life.

Now fate is a funny thing.

As Momiji leaned against the wall besides her door, careful not to be seen, he listened to her cry.

On one hand he wanted to comfort her, for he realized that she now saw, finally saw, what everyone else had know for years now. He wanted to comfort her. Let her know she was not alone.

But his other half warned against it. She needed to cry.

This was the first step to recovery.

And if Momiji ever really wanted to have a chance to have Tohru love him as she had loved Kyo all those many years ago, then he would just have to give her some time.

Again fate is a funny thing.

Isn't it just when everything seems to be taking a turn for the better, it takes two turns for the worse?

A pair of keys were turning in the lock.

Momiji's ears pricked at the sound, unfortunately, so did Tohru's.

In walked Kyo.

Her ears, now not so accustomed to silence, still heard the turn of the door knob. And there was only one person who still came.

There was only one person she really wanted to see.

She sprang to her feet and dashed to the opening of the hall, just hoping enough that he might be there.

Completely oblivious to the things, or the people around her, she rounded the corner, calling out his name in desperation.

Even from his hidden spot, he could still hear the elated notes in her voice, the expectancy, the need for her friend. He only wished he had been the one at the door.

Tohru's emotionless shell had started to crack. She wanted to change. She had a reason to change now.

But as soon she saw the orange hair, and the cocky smirk, her once smile that had been starting to light up her face disappeared.

And a new face of fear appeared.

As Kyo's face turned from a cocky expectant smile to a face of absolute anger at the mention of another man, let alone his cousin. Old memories of fights started to flicker to the surface.

Tohru stood frozen to the floor as Kyo approached.

She started to stammer with her words.

Momiji stood in the shadows behind. He crossed his fingers, he even slightly knocked on wood. He prayed that she could say what they both needed to hear. He learned forward, pushing his will and strength towards her.

"I want you to leave!"

It all came out in one quick and almost incomprehensible burst. Momiji wasn't sure who was more surprised. Kyo who had come home expecting to find a still broken Tohru, or Tohru who had only just started to mend herself.

But surprise turns to anger quick enough, and the mention of Momiji from before had quite left his mind.

"What was that?" Although he tried, it was impossible for Kyo to suppress all of the rage in his voice.

She took a step back. "I said, I wanted you to leave." New strength appeared with every word she spoke. "I want you to leave and never come back. I don't need you anymore."

With that Kyo gave a half chuckle. "Don't need me anymore? Didn't I make you?" He slowly approached. "Are you saying that you don't love me anymore?"

Momiji froze, aware that Tohru was shacking. He feared that she would fold again. The entire year he had spent with her trying to make her forget the pain would all be wasted. And once he left again, just like he always did, he would have to start from scratch.

He wasn't going to let that happen again.

Kyo now stood directly in front of Tohru. He looked like a giant against her diminutive frame.

"I said, don't you love me anymore?" Almost willing her to go against him.

Momiji was just about to intercept when Tohru spoke.

"No." It was soft. Almost a whisper. But strong enough that both men heard.

Kyo's eyes pierced into hers. "What did you say?"

"I said no." She raised her head so she was meeting his gaze. "I do not love you anymore. You can't love two people at once."

With that Kyo gave an angry laugh. "I suppose your in love with your precious Momiji." He had started to speak in an almost comical way, as if that would be impossible. But when Tohru turned her head away, all humour left his voice.

"Momiji? Momiji? You in love with that fucking little faggot? With that overly flamboyant child?" He leaned in close and spoke in a harsh whisper. "Momiji isn't half the man I am."

Tohru's eyes burned like fire and with the one last act of defiance her body could take, she faced him.
"He's more of a man then you are. He was here for me. He was here when you left, and he stayed when all others stopped coming. He looked after me. And whether he loves me or not, I know that I can trust him. Unlike you."

"Then where is he now?" Kyo's hand moved up so quickly to slap Tohru's face that Momiji's body barely had time to react. Kyo may have been going to slap her to teach her her place, or at least some obedience, and Tohru's body had been tensed for the incoming blow.

Both were surprised by the lack of effect it had.

There stood Momiji.

Her hero.

Once again staring at his strong back protecting her.

And now she knew.

It would always be there to protect her.

He stood there, face slightly turned from the impact of the slap.

Momiji stood there. With a new resolution in his eyes, and inner strength that he never knew he possessed.

Even Kyo took a step back, surprised by the look of determination in his eyes.

And Kyo knew. Knew that he had lost her.

It may have been when he saw Tohru's arms lace around Momiji's waist as she held herself tightly to him, or as he heard the cries of relief as she cried against his back.

But he knew.

With one resounding look, Kyo turned around and as quickly as he had come, he walked out the front door one last time.

This time, he would never be coming back.

As the door shut with a resounding click, Momiji gently loosened her arms from their death like vice they had around his waist and turned around to look at Tohru.

She stood there, tears streaming down her face.

No words were needed.

They stood there. His hands gently on her face, brushing her tears away.

Tears he hoped would never have to pour again.

She placed her hands on top of his own, and closed her eyes. As if finding comfort and being in the warmth they brought to her face.

It would be a long recovery.

Mending a broken heart, no matter how determined the person was to fix it, took time.

But they had all the time in the world.

He slowly brought her face up to his own. Her eyes now open wide, and gazing, half expectantly into his own. He place a soft kiss on her lips, never shutting his own eyes. Just staring into her own,

This was less of a kiss then it was a pact or a promise.

As he kissed her, she could feel his promises flooding into her.

And now she knew.

She knew he would always be there.

She knew that life could start over again.

She knew she had his love.

She knew she was free.

His hands now left her face and brought her in close to a strong embrace.

Once again Tohru started to cry, but this time it was different.

Her tears were now washing away her past life.

They now cleared the way for a new one.

And this life promised her the love that she had always deserved.

And now he knew.

That she was now, and always would be, his.