Disclaimer: I don't own Ouran High School Host Club
Title: Piano Man
Pairing: Tamaki/Haruhi centric
Author's Note: Lately, it seems I've been bitten by the drabble bug and also caught Host Club fever. Kyaaaa… shojo isn't all that bad, really.
Sorry for all those that don't like this pairing; but I believe this is the only one that could work to the fullest extent with no regrets for both characters, in the end. My first drabble and my first Ouran fic. Almost a future fic.
play us a song
The notes rang with increasing purity over the lushly ornate chamber.
They say that life is a beautiful fairytale for the rich. Others, more taken with the cynical view, regard wealth as laborious responsibility.
Haruhi Fujioka was currently experiencing the epitome of 'richness' seated in a far too large and ornate couch located in the third music room.
She wondered when the grand piano had been moved back into the room, anyhow. She wondered who could have possibly dragged the thing across flawless marble floors without a sound.
After getting into a fast-tracked law school with a reasonable scholarship as well as some financial aid from extra Host Club funds, you could say Haruhi had no reason whatsoever to be back in this room again—the start of a fairytale life that she would never admit had captivated her immensely in the first place.
She had early requests to take on future jobs as an attorney. You could say it was laborious.
Three handsome men from influential families (two of them brothers) had asked for her hand the past month. You could say that was like a fairytale.
His playing really was exquisite.
You could say the young Ms. Fujioka was slightly burdened. She had, in retrospect, stumbled upon this room again without quite realizing it—just like the first time half a decade ago.
It might have been the sounds of the piano drifting in the Ouran hallways, which were no doubt designed with optimum acoustics in mind.
Or it could have been the pianist, whose deft touch with the instrument Haruhi recognized from earlier years.
Play me a song, Piano Man.
The Suoh Corporation had been given a deadline to choose an heir. They'd been increasingly pressed due to the knowledge that their rival, the Ohtoris, had already named the third son Kyouya as successor. There were rumors they had been unable as of yet to secure a bride, or were simply deferred by the talented commoner the corporation head had his eyes on.
Is it to douse all my sorrows or to wash the long years away?
The music flowed so well that Haruhi couldn't help but cushion with her pinky the drink she was placing back on the coffee table. Maybe it was because she didn't want to interrupt the dreamlike quality that was developing from the soft ethereal sunlight brushing across the curtains.
Maybe it was because his habits and attentions were starting to catch up to her.
Perhaps to lift your own spirits as well.
Suoh Tamaki was the best candidate to lead the Suoh Corps, but there were inside rumors that he really had no desire to do such a thing, and had a bitter personal secret against them involving his childhood.
Maybe we need you to play all our responsibilities away.
If childhood is a fantasy, you could say Haruhi's childhood was rich. But she was both successful and a touch burdened presently, having another year in an elite college. Didn't that mean she was living the quintessence of wealth?
She uncrossed her legs.
The piano notes stopped ringing.
Piano Man, why did you stop the fairytale?
Haruhi strained to catch amethyst eyes, but he was still behind the grand piano, and she could only see the shine of silky golden hair and the luster of a fashionably tailored suit.
"Tamaki-senpai, I think I kind of miss the Host Club"
He didn't move from the piano bench, but instead started playing another riff, melancholy and sad. Haruhi wanted to shout at him for being such a melodramatic figure, but it really was part of his character.
"I know that you're thinking 'You're in touch with all of the others'," Haruhi said over the music. "I saw Hunny-senpai and Mori-senpai over the last vacation. Kyouya-senpai and even the Hitachinn twins asked me about possible m-marriage."
She stumbled over the last word.
He stumbled over the last chord.
"But it's not the same… Koaru had the theory that you were like the carriage driver who pulled us along in an enchanted pumpkin, trying to keep our relationship together. He was wondering when the pumpkin would turn back to normal and become covered in mud."
Haruhi sighed, took another sip of tea.
"You know, we were all counting on you to bring us back to the old days."
For a little while longer, please pretend the piece hasn't ended.
Haruhi felt like holding back the tears that threatened to drip out of her chocolate colored eyes was an impossible task. She gasped; shocked that she should ever display such a dependency on those around her. After all this time, it came down to her trying to make the former king of the Ouran Host Club direct her life for her.
"Senpai… I don't love them that way. When I told Kyouya's dad, he seemed so disappointed."
Do you think they understand? All the sad songs you play for us are just to warn us about the outside of the fairytale, aren't they?
He was the only one who hadn't asked yet. In fact, Haruhi rarely saw the club president after graduation.
She sighed, then turned resolute. "You've always looked out for me. Thank you, Senpai."
Haruhi stood up from the sofa. She had a cab waiting, a meeting at three, and classes to prepare for. It was good that Ouran was close to her school, or else she wouldn't have had a chance to deal with all the nostalgia.
Life isn't a fairytale for anyone. And the rich and poor alike have their burdens. Haruhi took one last longing glance at her senpai.
One last question
"Why are you here, anyways, Tamaki-senpai?" Haruhi asked. "To play the piano?"
When Tamaki raised his head from the keys, his expression nearly took Haruhi's breath away.
So many lives, so many responsibilities... It's no wonder we need people like you to lean on.
Suoh Tamaki smiled softly at her. His fingers rested lightly on the last notes he'd played.
His voice was exactly like she remembered.
"Do you think it's just coincidence, Haruhi?"
Do you think it's just coincidence I'm here?
She was slightly irked by that smile. It seemed to look straight at her. And yet, it asked for nothing from her. She had been the cornerstone for so many people in her life; transformed so many lives. Haruhi had nearly forgotten the stare someone gave you if they just wanted you to be happy without any burden or logic.
"Daddy is always here if you need him…Haruhi." Tamaki's lip quirked slightly towards the right side. He looked away again as a scarlet flush spread over his cheeks.
This was not what she had expected. She though Suoh would be one of the first to propose, to seek her out and throw more obstacles in her life.
When had he become so utterly selfless?
When had she become so utterly selfish?
Now that Haruhi thought about it, Tamaki had been extremely careful to not get into her way. Haruhi had been going full speed ahead into her career that she'd been scared to let Kyouya, Hikaru, Koaru, Hunny, or Mori stop her in her tracks. Tamaki had kept his distance from the start, watching her plough vigorously and waiting patiently for Haruhi to slow down and say:
'Wait a minute, where is it I'm trying to get to, anyway?'
Being rich is not about living a luxurious fairytale, or slaving away for burdens created by others. Sometimes, it's just about finding what one really needs and holding on to it.
"Senpai, play me one more song, please."
Haruhi stood there wordlessly as Tamaki took her cue effortlessly and began in another grand flourish. Waves of sound washed over the room.
They reverberated on walls and ceiling and floor. As Haruhi absorbed them, she opened her eyes to see Tamaki's soft smile and long eyelashes fringing closed eyelids.
She smiled back at him, even if he wasn't looking.
You're saying something with your music, aren't you?
Haruhi could feel the pulsating resonance, and the answering thump in her own chest as her heart skipped a beat.
Now she knew why Tamaki on the piano could bring tears to nearly everyone's eyes.
"Haruhi… I love you," the music seemed to say, no bars, nothing withheld.
Haruhi felt the full bloom of teenage years almost come back to her. She knew they never would be resurrected completely, but wasn't life good enough without that?
Being rich was about being willing to let others lean on you, and knowing when you're allowed to lean on others.
Haruhi felt like laughing when the music flowed into an allegro vivace. She felt like she could enjoy herself with no regrets or apologies towards others.
Even if the past was past, there was still the future. She left the third music room the first time unsure and clinging to the past.
She might be able to leave the third music room this time with no regrets.
That is, if Tamaki came with her.
Senpai, no, Tamaki-san… I might like you some, too.
Do you think that's enough for now?
You could say this might become enough for the future.
Author's Note- I'm not too familiar with the characters as of yet, but I'm thoroughly in love with the plot of Ouran Host Club.
When Haruhi says: Senpai, no, Tamaki-san
It means she's trying to give up calling Tamaki 'sempai'. While Tamaki-san is still formal, it's a step in the right direction.
Comments for my first one-shot and Ouran fic are much appreciated.
Thanks to everyone who read.