He could still remember the moment with unnatural clarity.

Exactly what dark color played off Seimei's young, unsmiling expression from behind the high collar of his trench coat, the parallel of black in thick silk strands whipping around his eyes…his indigo ice-shard eyes that pretended to love and bled lunacy.

He remembered how cold it was outside his apartment; his leather gloved hands itched for a cigarette; at the very least to warm him but instead dug deeper into his fur-lined pockets. He knew better, asking Seimei would have been pointless, and he knew consquences despite only being a mere twelve.

The direct order, how the high pitch of his cunning voice never outright displayed emotion.

Never come into my home.

And Soubi had never thought twice about the matter.

Though he could not have entered his Sacrifice's home, he had still taken to standing ominously beyond the gates, lungs pulsing with fresh tobacco. He had liked the neighborhood well enough. The constant noises, the joyous laughter muffled through decorated panes of glass, the sounds of distant traffic, the smells of fruit and flowers, the abnormally friendly conversation with engaging residents.

Among the row of clean and nicely-angled brick apartments, his Master's stood out like an ugly sore.

Given his slightly older and beautiful appearance, and impeccable manners, the neighbors had confessed their feelings of dislike towards the family openly and shamelessly to him. It was common knowledge that they were bad news.

How they never liked to keep appearances, a lack of respect for regular noise levels (they emphasized on the laughter that had not been kind and the screaming into all hours of the night). In a word, it terrified.

And it had not been surprising to him that the Aoyagi household was held together by such delicate circumstances; Soubi had seen the one or two bruises under a coat sleeve, but nothing severe.

Nevertheless…it was bizarre to think that Beloved had been subjected to the punishment, and had not given it out.

One afternoon after his early morning classes across town, Soubi had decided to roam the streets of the 'forbidden' area. Coming up to 'forbidden' house, a glare of light reflected off the edge of his left lens.

Glancing around, he located the source easily, a shiny zipper on a jumper wiggling freely against wool material. The large-eyed child wearing the jumper shrieked happily as his miniature hands seized around his bouncing toy. Genuinely intrigued by the neglected toddler on the sidewalk, he observed more closely. Tiny cat ears peeking shyly out of tousled pieces of hair, an adorable black tail wrapped around his chubby bare right leg. Kicking his prize that emitted a faint squeak! , the three-year-old chased after his runaway ball unsupervised.

Right into the middle of rush hour.

Long naked fingers clenched in anticipation, the newly-lit cigarette in his grasp breaking in two by the force.

Soubi hadn't come to terms with what had happened until he heard the blaring car horn. Then became very aware of a soft squishy weight leaning into his ribs; supported to his chest by a gawky embrace. Granted, his limbs hadn't known what to do with themselves.

Just inches from ramming into his legs, the angry driver of the gray vehicle made a rude gesture before punching his fist furiously into his steering wheel. The second time the car honked, the little boy in his rescuing arms released a loud frightened bawl.

"Ritsuka! RITSUKA!"

Unanticipated, his ten-year-old Sacrifice appeared to roughly snatch the child from his Fighter, hugging the wailing figure to his jersey and stroking the side of his tear-strained face as he whispered consolingly into his human ear. It had taken one disturbingly dark glare from Seimei to quiet the ruckus.

Taking his chances with maneuvering backwards into traffic, the now spooked driver sped away in reverse down the whole block.

Soubi's attention drew back to the odd pair.

"What did I tell you Ritsuka?" Seimei scolded the little boy in his arms lightly; not at all acting bad-tempered, and rubbed his nose affectionately into the mess of black hair, "Don't play with your things in the street. You know better than that…what if Mother had caught you?"

'Mother' had not uttered any signs of friendliness but rather rolled off his tongue grimly.

Not bothering to acknowledge his servant and the good deed, the hardened young man turned right around into the gloom of his family's apartment with his precious cargo.


And that's when he learned Seimei's ultimate weakness. The one individual he enjoyed to physically touch, the welcomed visitor to sleep in his bed in the middle of a restless evening, the only soul in the world who seemed to deserve real love.

His little brother.

Soubi imagined that he suppose to feel jealousy towards the runt, but somehow couldn't work the sentiments to feel offended. He felt fondness for his Master but that was the business of a Fighter and Sacrifice, wasn't it? He loved Seimei. He would protect and fight for him until death. It's what Seimei expected, it was what he was taught he existed for. Nothing else seemed important.

So the next time he saw his little brother, Soubi was slightly more prepared.

He wasn't prepared for falling in love.

That was far from his intentions.

He wasn't prepared for the worst to come.



Loveless belongs to its creator Yun Kouga who I'd love to bow down to. Okay, before you kill me off for A: making a twelve-year-old Soubi already pick up the habit for smoking (I didn't give him the cigarettes, I blame Kio!), B: nearly letting Soubi get hit by a car (he was rescuing little Ritsuka! C'mon now!), and C: leaving you all hanging; this will probably be a two or threeshot. And I do frequently switch time frames but I'll be nice about it. I haven't gotten to the, um...fun scenes yet... By the way, LaChoy gets the dedication because she was kind enough to help me find the manga and feed the need! You are SO getting a diamond ring from Tiffany's. Reviews give me more motivation to write...the fun scenes...heehee.