A/N: Hello! I've had this written for around six months now, but I didn't want to post it because, honestly, I'm not going to finish this fiction, and I was just using this chapter to jumpstart some creativity. But since I kept on getting reviews and alerts for this story, I figured I'd just post it. Enjoy!

Disclaimer: I do not claim to own Vampire Knight.


It still didn't make sense.

This was Zero's first thought. In fact, nothing made sense.

Wasn't he strong enough to hold off a few assassins? Why did Kuran invest so much into him if he couldn't even do that? And why the hell did he have to be holed up in this pureblood bastard's room to be protected, especially when said pureblood was insane and licking his blood? The memory of Kuran's smile went out the window, only to be replaced with fury. He was not helpless.

"Kuran," he spat. "Let me out." Zero's self-control was fracturing from the simple task of not yelling at the pureblood.

"No," was the instant reply.

Zero stared at Kuran, boring missiles into his perfect composure. And as if he could anticipate what got on his nerves the most, Kuran continued his tea-sipping motion, drinking without a sound, and with a soft clink, placed the teacup back on its plate. Without returning Zero's stare—in fact, without acknowledging his presence whatsoever, but still somehow maintaining the aura of complete power—Kuran leaned forward to set the teacup and its singularly attention-inspiring plate back onto the table. His free hand picked up the nondescript book Zero only now noticed had been in the space between them, fingered the pages to where he had supposedly left off, and started reading.

He crossed his legs, and Zero's irritation spiked to notice that the leg on the floor was directly in front of the gap he would have taken to grab Bloody Rose.

Zero hated this sensation the most. Besides understanding that Kuran wanted to protect him while Yuki was in the hospital, Zero couldn't stand being caged because someone thought he wasn't able withstand a threat. Weakness was what he had avoided his entire life, and for the person he hated the most to tell him that he was, in fact, weak made him furious.

And now, to be paralyzed so much that he hesitated to take the book Kuran was reading and throw it in the pureblood's face humiliated him.

In Zero's lap, his fists tightened as he forced himself to look away from Kuran. He had to calm down, think of a way to escape this suffocating "protection." He would not acknowledge that Kuran would take such extreme measures to preserve his life. After all, he was the one that looked down his nose at Zero's existence every time he saw him. Less than a bug, little more than something he could control. A pawn to protect Yuki.

A realization crept up to him, pulling his fists apart.

Kuran protected him in order to protect Yuki. But from what? What was so big of a threat that Kuran himself had to protect him from? Who?

He glanced at Kuran, and was involuntarily frozen by soft brown eyes. Kuran still had his book open—he just wasn't reading it. He clapped the book close with a soft tmp and set it down on his lap, still staring in a way that made Zero uncomfortable.

Kuran opened his mouth to say something, and then after what seemed to be some thought, closed it.

Immediately, Zero's fists clenched again in irritation, and he snapped, "What?"

"I would appreciate it if you held in your anger. The table will shatter," Kuran said. Not understanding, Zero looked back at the glass table and found a large crack stretching from the center to the side closest to him.

No.

"You have gained powers by drinking my blood. Don't misuse them."

It shouldn't have come as a surprise to him, Zero knew. But the reflexive anger and self-loathing that was spawned from the realization that he was indebted to Kuran and that he was even more of a monster now than before couldn't be contained.

Another crack formed on the table.

He didn't want Kuran to see him like this.

There was another crack but a hand touched him on the arm, and he found himself staring straight into Kuran's face.

—and something was unleashed onto the pureblood. Desperation, maybe, but what mattered were the thin ribbons of blood that splashed out of Kuran's body from the wounds Zero knew he had inflicted. In moments, the pureblood's white collared shirt soaked up the blood around the wounds on his chest, neck, and arms, the tears revealing broken skin.

Kuran hadn't blinked. His face was scratched, but even those cuts had begun to heal already. He removed his hand from Zero's arm, and as Zero watched, nonchalantly began to lick his wounds.

The shock was wearing off, but Zero would have preferred it to the bloodlust that crept up on him. His breath came a little heavier, and the sensation of his fangs growing, sharpening, sickened him. It had been… two days. Two days since he'd fed. He hadn't drunk that much, considering Aido's intervention, and his suppressed hunger reared its ugly head. He hadn't been thirsty before, but once he had seen blood, a powerful urge slammed into him.

Instinctively, his hand covered his face. Swaying, he got up from the couch and headed towards the door.

"Kiryu."

Zero stopped, looked over his shoulder. Kuran had finished healing his wounds, and now was sitting serenely on the couch, a mad contrast to the ruined shirt he wore.

"Where do you plan to go, in that state?" Kuran asked. Fury wasn't evident in his voice, but Zero felt the hairs on the back of his neck stand on end. "What do you plan to do?"

Zero didn't know, didn't care. He just had to get out of there. He turned away and stepped towards the door again.

"This is why you're weak," Kuran said, the hiss barely audible in his tone. But Zero could sense it, the disgust and condescension. He stopped again, and dimly, he realized that Kuran didn't wear shoes in his room because his footsteps made no sound as he approached him.

Hatred rose in Zero's body, giving him the strength, or maybe stupid courage, to keep his back to Kuran. But still, his feet wouldn't move.

"Give in, Kiryu," Kuran said, stopping behind him. Zero could feel the terrifyingly malevolent nature of the pureblood's command, and knew, without a doubt, that he would have obeyed if he hadn't already drunk Kuran's blood. But he was not afraid of the pureblood and what he would do to him. He was afraid of what he would do to himself. Involuntarily, he shuddered.

Zero had the choice this time. And he would not let Kuran make his decisions for him. The insanity was fading already, and although the scent of blood still lingered, he crushed down the hunger with his will, like he'd done so many times before.

He looked over his shoulder, at Kuran and straight into that glare, and said, "No."

And with that response, and with no resistance, he stalked out of the Night Class dorm president's room.

It was cold outside.

Atop its perch in a tree, a crow cawed and flapped away.

Maria Kurenai's tongue delicately licked her lips as her consciousness returned to her body and smiled. "He's grown up to be so handsome… and with that man's interest as well." She laughed, and looked up to the masked figure beside her. "Though I suppose you two are twins after all. Why don't we go visit your brother, Ichiryu?"


A/N: Before you guys ask, again, no, I'm not going to finish this fiction. Still, thanks for all of your support!