A/N: Back again! And, like I promised to my darling readers, a new chapter hot off the press; filled with lots of sorrow and drama. A little OOCness, but that can't be helped. Unfortunately, this week hasn't been good to me…my kitty ran away! D:

Anyway, that has nothing to do with Matt or Mello so you probably don't care. In that case… here's the chapter! Enjoy.

Matt's eyes, barely cracked open, slid shut. He had done his job. Mello was safe and Kevin was gone. He had fulfilled his purpose. Sure, Kevin had escaped, but now the Mafia knew his face and he'd be beaten down if he ever came after Mello.

"Matt, don't you die on me, God dammit!" The blond yelled and grabbed Matt's hand, but to Matt, all the noise was so far away.

A stab wound like this shouldn't kill him, Matt figured… but it could – that's where the beauty of it was. The redhead wasn't sure he wanted to escape death again. He'd done all he could bare to do in this life.

Things were too painful, too complicated. He wasn't dying young – he'd never been treated like he was young and he'd never acted like it, so it was simply his time.

Matt let go.

He stopped fighting; letting his body take him to that mysterious darkness that seemed to beckon him from the edge of consciousness.

Mello panicked as he felt the redhead getting colder under his touch. The ambulance – he had called them right away – so why weren't they here? Why weren't they saving Matt?!

"Matt, you fucking coward! Keep fighting! Matt, you can't do this!! Matt…!" Mello's screaming turned into pitiful sobs as he clung to Matt's hand, wishing his warmth would transfer to the body growing colder at an alarming rate.

Minutes passed and paramedics stormed the room, retrieving Matt from the floor and separating him from Mello.

"Where's my miracle?!" Mello yelled, rushing at one of the medics only to be held back by a few more, "Huh?! You're too fucking late, aren't you?! He's dead, isn't he?! You're supposed to save him!

"So where's my fucking miracle?! Where…?! Why…?" Mello screamed, fighting against his retainers until he collapsed to the floor in sobs.

Moments later, he stood and shoved away anybody before him, running to the window where the ambulance was parked at the curb. He watched them load Matt's body, now on a stretcher, carefully into the back.

The blond ran after them.

He had to know; was there hope?

Mello ran down the stairs an out the door into the crisp wind. The wet tears chilled his cheeks as the air blew directly at his face.

Climbing onto his motorcycle, Mello followed the speeding ambulance without hesitation. The blaring sirens were blocked out by the frantic pounding of Mello's heart echoing in his head.

How ironic, Mello was usually sending people away in ambulances without a thought, but as this ambulance sped down the street it was all he could think about… he felt as if his life depended on it.

"Hey!" He said from the back of the otherwise empty room, throwing a pencil at me to get my attention. The eraser hit me in the back of the head and I turned to look at him.

He grinned mischievously and asked, "You're Mail, right?"

I nodded.

"First day out and about and you're already in detention?" He asked, knowing not to mention the time I had spent not "Out and About."

He knew it wasn't pleasant for most orphans to say why they were here or how they'd become an orphan and how long it'd taken them to recover in isolation. I was thankful.

I remained quiet and nodded shyly as a response.

"What'd you do?" He asked impishly, finding it suitable to throw an eraser at my head again.

I hesitated, but then said, "I lit the curtains on fire… they were damn ugly."

"He laughed a light, yet somewhat forced, chuckle as he pounded his fist on the desk. "So true…"

"What about you…?" I asked quietly.

He smirked then, clicking his fingernails on the desktop. "Heh… I lit Near on fire."

He burst into another fit of laughter and I felt the smallest tug of a smile pull at my lips for the first time since arriving at Wammy's.

Yes, that was it… the first day I met Mello…

Beep. "…ight be in a coma…?"

And even then I knew we were going to be close.

"…hear you. Try to say somethi…" Beep. Beep.

Then again, I didn't know how much I'd feel for him. But at that age, who does?

Beep. "…att? Can…hear me? Ma…" Beep.

It wasn't long after that, though, that I knew he was something special. Around him, I was okay with being third.

"…lease, you can't do th…" Beep. "Matt…" Beep.

Even when he pushed me away, I would stick around to protect him. If it was something stupid like "scare the mailman" pranks or something private like holding him after he had a nightmare, I was always there. Always…

Beep. "…ou can hear me, please… wake u…" Beep.

Because I love him. And I always will.

"Matt… wake up… please." Beep. Beep. Beep.

I love him so much, even if he doesn't care for me… so even if it might be less painful, I can't give in. I need to be there with him, no matter what. I can't go like this, not yet…!

"Matt! Wake up!" Beeeep…

Matt's eyes flew open and he sat up, only to grit his teeth at the dull pain in his abdomen.

"Matt!" Mello said in surprise, stumbling back a few inches at first, but the next second Mello's hands were on the other male's shoulders, pushing Matt back down into a lying position.

Even after the redhead was comfortably situated, Mello's hand rested gently on Matt's shoulder.

The gamer's eyelids were heavy from sedatives and his tongue felt like a brick for the same reason. "Mello…?" Matt asked groggily, fighting with unconsciousness.

"Yeah, Matt, I'm here." The blond replied quietly with a small, reassuring squeeze to the shoulder.

The redhead let his eyes close, but still struggled against sleep. "A hospital…?" Matt inquired in a tone suggesting he was surprised Mello took him there.

"You know I'm no good at first aid, Matt. You… were always better at that stuff." Mello replied.

Matt nodded. The small, prideful smirk that had been there started to fade as he remembered what had happened. "How long have I…?" The redhead slurred, gesturing vaguely with his hand.

"Um… we've been here a couples days. You've been unconscious the entire time."

Matt nodded faintly again, but stopped suddenly as if realizing something.

"You stayed?"

Mello was dumbstruck. "You…?! Tch! Of course I did! What kind of person do you think I am?" The blond cried defensively, only slightly offended.

Matt chuckled lightly, "The kind of person who wouldn't risk it and take me to a hospital in the first place…"

"Your life is more important to me than any risks there may be for us." Mello countered, taking his hand from Matt's shoulder to cross his arms over his chest.

Matt stayed silent as he contemplated this, not being able to shake the guilty feeling he had.

"I'm sorry." Matt said after a few minutes of silence, even though he knew that could never be enough.

"Sorry?! Matt, nothing is your fault!" Mello retorted, his eyes fixing on Matt's seemingly indifferent face.

"Not my fault, Mello? Everything is my fault… all of this. Kevin was and is my problem, not yours. Now I have you mixed up in this, and believe me, I never wanted that to happen.

"Gods, Mello, if you had just let me die back there then you wouldn't have something from my past interfering with any future you might have." The redhead said firmly, his mask of indifference cracking as he bit his lip to keep himself in check.

"Matt, if we weren't in a hospital right now I would kick your ass. Don't you ever say that and don't ever give up on me again!

"Do you have any idea how worried I was about your ass? Do you?! Do you have any idea how much shit I'd be in if you died? Matt, you're so much better than that!" Mello snapped, looking into Matt's emerald eyes that were now open and aware.

Matt looked at him with a mix of confusion, doubt and gratitude as he shook his head. "I think you need to set your priorities straight."

Mello narrowed his eyes, "Priorities? It comes down to your life and me risking mine. Is there even a question on which one I'd choose? Is this who you've turned into?! Someone who just… gives up?!"

"I know what I'd choose, Mello."

"So you have given up! Just when things get hard? Life is fucking hard, Matt! Wait it out – you're not alone anymore, why don't you get that?" Mello pleaded, his hand finding Matt's forearm and squeezing it.

Without his goggles, Matt could clearly see that Mello was upset and on the verge of tears. Mello had always been the more openly emotional one out of the two, but now the blond could see Matt's misty eyes and the broken look on his face.

Mello realized now that this Matt was the Matt he'd really been friends with all this time. Matt wasn't invincible; he was a fragile human being, just like himself. Someone fragile who had been broken so long ago, but strong enough to put the pieces back together to face another day.

Matt put on a face that made it seem like he didn't care. Like nothing could bring him down; like he was invincible… and Mello had bought it. Which was, of course, what Matt had wanted. Mello realized Matt acted this way so he wouldn't seem so weak to the blond.

Matt never intended for Mello to seem him the way he was now, Mello acknowledged that. In fact, Mello didn't mind at all. Matt was so… human, so much less… flawless. Mello didn't feel like the only emotional idiot in this friendship anymore and he didn't feel like Matt thought of him that way.

Matt looked away from Mello's icy blue eyes as he shed the first tear he ever had around the blond. He had been close before, but now he let the warm tear slide silently down his cheek, another soon following its path.

Mello glanced down at his hand on Matt's arm thoughtfully, "You don't have to fight him alone, Matt. Because let me tell you, that bastard has made himself my problem as well as yours."

Matt closed his eyes against the warm stream of tears that he couldn't control, cursing himself for being so stupid.

"Matt, you just wait. I'll fix all of this; everything that asshole has done. Believe me… that son of a bitch is going down."

Okay, kinda' cliché, kinda' cheesy, kinda' OOC, but not bad, right? :/

I want to hear your thoughts!

PS. Did you notice! The big 10! Muahaha, ten chapters. How about ten reviews for the ten chapters... huh? :D