Title: Swept Away
Characters: Kon, mentions of the other characters
Rating: T
Words: 581
Description: Kon's POV. It's useless to try and escape at this point. He's been locked on, swept away, and trapped.

Despite my propensity towards writing slash and/or shounen-ai, this story wasn't actually intended for that purpose. It's just a general friendship fic, though I suppose it could be seen as a pairing if you squinted. I leave it up to the reader. As for where this takes place in canon... I've read through chapter 14 of the manga and seen the entire anime. Anything that happens after that, I don't know about yet.

Disclaimer: I do not own Amatsuki. That honor belongs to the actual manga-ka. I'm just borrowing without permission.

There is something about him that he cannot help but watch, help but protect. "Blank Page" or not, everything about Toki seems to be inviting. Gravitating.

So eager to please, yet claiming that he merely acts and reacts. That he has no idea what he himself is thinking. It intrigues Kon. It makes him do strange things he wouldn't normally consider.

It's both cute and attracting, but most of all fascinating. As if he could form a doctorate thesis on Toki's actions alone.

For all his strength, there is something fragile in Toki. And while Kon has never considered himself the proverbial knight in shining armor, Toki somehow brings out this urge to protect. This urge to sacrifice himself if need be, just to see him live again. To see that innocent and wide-eyed smile.

It is fake sometimes. Kon can see it. There's a curve to his lips, a hollowness to that one seeing eye that falls flat and empty. As though Toki is merely smiling because someone told him he should no matter the situation and he lives by that rule. It never reaches his expression, and Kon notices, though he keeps his comments to himself.

There are also times when his smile is nearly blinding, when there is nothing but honest excitement or amusement or happiness. It is probably those smiles that Kon likes the most, the ones he feels he must protect. Like they are capable of chasing away all the darkness inside of him.

He doesn't know what it is like to have a friend. A true friend, not a mere acquaintance who makes a claim but never follows through. At least, not until Toki. Shamon-san and Kuchiha… until Toki came along, they were all merely acquaintances. And now, they are a bond of friends, of something kinda-sorta like family.

From the moment Toki appeared in their lives, he and everyone around him began to change. Becoming better for it. Finding strengths they didn't know they had. He can see it in Kuchiha. In Heihachi. And even in Shamon-san. They are all caught up in Toki's current.

He supposes he could blame it on the fact that Toki is supposed to be something grand, something special that is going to change the world. The Blank Page. The one life whose fate has not been decided. But Kon has never been one to rely entirely on fate or anything like that.

He also knows that it's useless to try and escape at this point. That he's been locked on, swept away, and trapped. But honestly, watching Kuchiha and Toki have one of their usual little spats as he puffs on his pipe, he doesn't mind it one bit.

AN: I know. It goes everywhere and nowhere. But I'm surprisingly fond of it. Heh. Comments are appreciated!