Title: "A Light in the Dark"
(Thank you fanfic for Kyoya)
Fandom: "Vampire Knight"
Pairing: Kaname x Yuuki
Genre: romance, PWP, gen
Words: approx. 2000
A/N: "Vampire Knight" belongs to Hino Matsuri and all related rights-holders.
This is a thank-you fic for Kyoya who wrote the 25th review in "Core Dump", an "Avatar" story I wrote. This fic doesn't fall in any particular time or space within canon, it's a simple 'PWP'. Enjoy!
The theatre was small and intimate, its lush carpet muffling the sounds of the students who filled its seats and hallways.
"I'm so excited," whispered one girl as she passed through one of the ornate archways.
"I know, we hardly ever have activities with the Night Class!"
Following on the tails of a very successful ball held jointly between the Day and Night Classes, the benevolent headmaster had arranged for the entire school to spend an evening enjoying a play at an opera & theatre house in the nearby town. The Day Class students had spent the entire day preparing for it – to the point where their teachers had decided to simply cancel the rest of their classes by lunchtime, as half were absent and the other half were too distracted to pay their lowly grade-markers any attention.
The Night Class had prepared, also, but some complained about having to share the floor seats instead of sitting in their private boxes.
"It's good to interact with the Day Class," Ichijou consoled Ruca sympathetically. "It's a great gesture of goodwill between us and the humans."
"Hmph," she turned her nose away, feeling the stares of several of the human males on her again. Her skin felt like it wanted to crawl off her.
"Aido, please contain yourself," sighed Kain a few rows away, hands in the pockets of his dark, fitted trousers. He pulled one elegant, long-fingered hand out and glanced at his ticket again. "Where are we sitting?..."
The lady-killer ignored his friend's words and continued winking and blowing kisses at his admirers. "Yes, I remember all of you! Hello, ladies!"
Of course, this outing and the inter-mingling of classes required supervision.
Headmaster Cross had sat down with Yuuki and Zero earlier that afternoon and gone through the layout of the theatre to familiarize them with it and give them as much help as he could.
"These are the emergency exits," he pointed, "these are the snack bars, here are the washrooms, here are the lobbies and waiting areas…"
"What about the private booths and boxes?" asked Zero, pointing to the rounded areas that jutted out from the walls, higher in the auditorium. "Aren't the Night Class students using those?"
"No, everyone is to sit together like a normal school!" exclaimed their benefactor proudly, arms clasped tightly in front of him. "It will be a beautiful sight, student beside student, not separated by barrier or time, together to enjoy a cultural--."
"It was cheaper to get ground seats, wasn't it?"
"It makes it easier for you to supervise!"
Zero glared at the plans.
Yuuki spoke up for the first time. "What time do we head out and return, Headmaster?"
Eyebrow twitching, Yuuki sighed. "What time do we leave and return, 'Papa'?"
"Ah! My lovely daughter, you make me so proud!"
"Of course, Zero. You leave at 6:30 PM, just after supper, and should be back in the dorms by about midnight. There is transportation arranged. You will be the only party there tonight."
For these small favours, we are thankful, Zero wanted to say, but held his peace.
"Are there any restrictions, rules, or duties we otherwise need to know about?" asked Yuuki, memorizing the entry and exit points to the theatre.
"…There are no weapons allowed."
The teenagers straightened up in shock. Each glanced at the other in alarm, wondering if their guardian was serious.
"I'm afraid it's true," sighed the headmaster, his shoulders slumping as he read the expressions on their faces. "It isn't a 'goodwill gesture' of my own devising – the theatre's own company set this rule. We must abide by it."
"Can we take ours with us on the ride in?"
The headmaster hesitated. "Yes… but do not bring anything with you inside the building. There are wards within it that … well, let's not cross that bridge."
Yuuki glanced through the window that let in the late afternoon sun. "We need to go get ready," she said. Already she knew she'd be skipping her supper in order to make sure she had time to herd the other students along. "Thank you, Papa. We'll do our best!"
"Yuuki-darling, you make me so proud to be your--."
With a flutter of her school uniform's skirt, she was already out the door.
Zero glared at the plans once more before turning to leave.
"Zero, a moment?" asked the man sitting behind his heavy oak desk.
Shutting the door, Zero calmly went to sit down with the headmaster in private.
"This way, please! If you have tickets for rows 16 through 20, please come this way!" Yuuki called over the din of her fellow students. She waved her arms and jumped a bit to get their attention, but the majority were too infatuated with the Night Class students sitting on the other side of the row to pay her any mind. The soft pashmina scarf around her shoulders fluttered faintly at her jostling, and she automatically patted her Prefect Armband to make sure it was still pinned securely to the edge of the delicate material.
"Pay attention to your Prefect!" hollered Zero angrily from behind Yuuki, startling her so much she nearly dropped her megaphone.
"Gah, Zero! Could you warn me next time? And stop scaring everyone…"
The tall young man ignored her and glared at the students now filing meekly into their seats. Arms stiff at his sides, he still wore his usual school uniform and regarded everyone with cold eyes.
"Go make sure no one's lost in the halls," he sighed, putting a hand to her back gently to send her on her way, "I'll take care of herding the sheep."
"Zero, I can--."
"Just go." He picked up her megaphone and brought it threateningly to his mouth. "Hurry up! If you're not in your seats, you'll sit in the lobby!" he called out darkly to the rest of the students still waiting to find their places. "Rows 21 through 24! Move!"
Yuuki glanced up to see the tendons in his neck move tightly under the tattoo-seal as he yelled. He wasn't really angry at her, she knew that, but it still bothered her she was being relegated to hall-monitor duty.
When she reached the corridors, they were deserted. Zero must have already scared the stragglers into obeisance.
Of course they were deserted, she thought after a moment's reflection, the Night Class is sitting with the regular students on the main floor. For once, everyone was together. Tonight there's no reason for them to not be where they're supposed to be. She had to hand it to the headmaster; this time his plan really had worked in her favour.
She did a full tour of the main floor's hallways, entrances, exits, and lobbies, and even peeked into the rest rooms. All clear.
It was less than five minutes to curtain – she could hear the orchestra warming up, and in the hidden corridors when she passed the backstage area she could hear the actors running to their positions on stage behind the heavy velvet curtains.
"All clear here," she murmured to herself. It was a bit spooky to patrol completely by herself in a new location, however she remembered attending a similar performance in the theatre before, when she'd been younger. She was familiar with most of the layout and common areas already.
That was when she heard a sound behind her. Footsteps.
Yuuki whirled, her hands automatically moving to open her staff—which she immediately remembered she'd left outside.
"Huh," she said, shaking her arms out. She let her hearing extend and calmed herself, focusing on the direction from where the sound had emanated.
The footsteps slowly, steadily retreated, becoming even softer before disappearing. Away from the auditorium. Someone was sneaking away! But where?
The stairs, she realized. The mezzanine, the balconies, and the boxes were all accessed by the staircases.
"Time to investigate," she thought, and followed the mysterious stranger.
Yuuki shone her flashlight in front of her; she didn't dare turn on the lights now that the production of "Romeo & Juliet" had started. Below the balustrade she heard the actors' dialogue on stage.
There had been no one on the mezzanine since it was closed to spectators that night; the lobby attendant had provided her a flashlight when she'd asked to go to the upper levels. She'd checked the first two balconies and had one left to go.
As she climbed a narrow, winding stairwell, she reached the top a little out of breath and recognized another of the heavy velvet ropes meant to prevent forbidden visitors from crossing the threshold. Hopping over it, she looked out over the entire balcony.
There was no one there.
Shoulders slumping, she turned off the flashlight and let it drop to her side. It made no sound as it bumped against the soft silk of her gown.
She'd been so sure she'd heard something, someone. Had it been one of the theatre's employees or actors? Maybe she'd had it all wrong – perhaps it hadn't been a student at all.
"All that running after a ghost," she sighed to herself, resting her chin on her hands on the railing at the front of the balcony.
The first act was coming to a close. She watched the curtains pull together, and the theatre went dark for a minute or so.
That was when she saw it – the flicker of a single candle lit in the highest, most private box reflecting off the ceiling of the private room.
The young prefect was glad she'd memorized so many of the corridors and stairways when she'd examined the theatre's blueprints in her father's office earlier that day. It had come in handy searching for the ghost. The route she took now, though, to the private box she knew by instinct.
Must've gotten the hang of this place. She automatically knew how to reach the levels where the box seats were located. Her sense of direction led her on.
She climbed the private stairwell that led to the intimate viewing area. It was a perfect hiding place, she realized – being the only box that was higher than the tallest balcony, no one would notice the glow from below, or even be able to see it due to the way its base jutted out. It was only by chance she'd noticed the reflection of light on its ceiling…
Adrenaline rushed in her veins as she reached the top step; she squared her shoulders back and prepared to escort the wayward students back to their assigned seats, with all the authority vested in her.
Taking a deep breath, she pulled back the curtain and rounded on the occupant.
The man waiting for her turned and welcomed her with a warm, inviting smile, a single rose in his hand.
"Hello, Yuuki," said Kaname Kuran. "…You're late. You had me worried."
His black shirt and elegant jacket fitted him perfectly; his dark hair was a bit loose, but suited him; and his eyes looked only at her as he stood and held his hand out for her to join him.
"Kaname-sempai…" she tried to remember why she'd come all the way up there to find him. To bring him back, since he wasn't supposed to be here. Right. "You should be with the other students. On the main floor…" Even she didn't want to send him back. She was a lousy Prefect sometimes. He should stay in this perfect box. But rules were rules…
"My ticket clearly says I'm in the right place. I have your ticket here, too." He stood directly in front of her now, looking down at her. With simple, elegant movement, he brushed a loose tendril of hair away from her face, and picked up her hand by the long, tapered fingers of his other, wrapping her fingers around the gift. His hand lingered by her cheek as he met her eyes, and his expression was caring, devoted, pleased to be in her company.
"I don't think…"
"Really. You can see the tickets have our names on them, and these seats." Drawing her into the room he led her to a small loveseat and motioned to the tickets on the nearby table. He swept them up and held them out for her to examine.
She stepped further in to the miniature balcony to bring the tickets to the single candle that burned on the low table – and realized with a start the table was heaped with fruit, pastries and treats.
"Kaname-sempai," she gasped softly, "you—your—look at all this—can you even eat--."
"Hmmm…" he read, taking the tickets from her hands. "Kaname Kuran, Box M, Seat 1." A smile tugged at the corners of his mouth. She couldn't take her eyes off him. "Yuuki Cross, Box M, Seat… 1."
She felt her mouth open and close a few times as she tried to make sense of things.
"I need to get back…" she stuttered, trying to hold on to her sense of duty and purpose.
Kaname's smile softened and he reached for both her hands.
"Stay," he commanded, his voice like a velvet rope that bound her to him. He gently held up her hand and withdrew the flashlight from her. It dropped softly into the plushy carpet behind the seat.
Still holding her reverently in his grasp, he pulled her to him and sat her in his seat.
He kneeled beside her, close to the table, and reached for one of the red berries shining lusciously in the dim light.
"Say 'ahh'," he instructed, holding the strawberry up.
Yuuki swallowed and tried to think of what to say.
Faintly amused at her reaction, Kaname cupped her face with his other hand, leaned in close, and pressed the tip of his thumb to her lips to open them slightly. He gently pushed the sweet berry through, licking his thumb when he finished. His face inches from hers, he watched her blush and chew, his hand stopping an inch from her cheek, as if remembering he had her all to himself for the night and didn't need to rush.
"See, it's good."
"Mmm-hmm," she murmured.
"Would you like another?"
She swallowed, and relaxed a bit. Unsure of what he was playing, yet immensely pleased to have his attention and care, Yuuki felt her shoulders loosen, and a smile move slowly across her face. They could have tonight together.
"Yes, please," she said, and leaned forward to meet him this time. He rubbed his thumb over her lips again to tease them open, and she did so readily.
The light in Kaname's eyes glowed happily.
AN: Thank you for reading -- I'm working on Part III & IV!
AN: This chapter first posted 20 Aug 2008.
AN: EDIT: Thank you, neverbreakxpact, for bringing to my attention the error I made with how Yuuki addressed Kaname! (I knew I forgot to add something! Fixed now; I think I got them all...)
AN: EDIT Numero Deux: Fixed the spelling on Aido's name. Sorry about that!