Title: Verge

Characters/Pairings: D18; Tsuna also makes an appearance
Author: Istrill
Rating: PG-13

Summary: If someone was enough of a herbivore to get himself killed, he probably deserved it. And no, he didn't go to Italy because he was worried. Character death.
Spoilers: Very vague
Notes: Ohmygod, Hibariangst. I'm just assuming unnecessary things because Dino hasn't showed up yet.

V E R G E

No news is bad news.

Hibari wouldn't admit he was worried or anxious. He didn't really care; if someone was enough of a herbivore to get himself killed, he probably deserved it.

That's what he was trying to convince himself to, but to no avail. He was all tense and felt uneasy. And he didn't like the it either.

The Japanese walked briskly through the arrival hall at the airport with scornful expression. He hated crowds and thus, he hated airports.

There were very few things he liked.

Hibari's foul mood apparently influenced Hibird very negatively, as the yellow bird sat quietly on his owner's shoulder. Maybe it was a jet lag (Hibird surely could have one; he was an extraordinary bird, Hibari thought); or maybe it was some kind of an eerie premonition, but since Hibari most certainly didn't believe in premonitions and prophecies, he didn't really consider that as an alternative.

He stepped out of the stuffy hall into the sunny morning. After fifteen hours on a plane, the light sea breeze felt refreshing and Hibari just adored being drenched in the golden Italian sun.

No black limousine was waiting for him; no wonder, as he couldn't reach anyone of the Cavallone. He just waved at the cab to take him to the town.

He certainly didn't come to Italy because he wasn't entirely sure if Dino was alive. No. It was high time he went to see him anyway and maybe, he could make some progress on the box research.

And Sawada would ask him to go anyway. They knew there was an attack on the Cavallone estate and after that all the communication with Dino ceased. The only way to find out how the things were was to go and see.

Hibari walked out of the bathroom stall at the airport and stood by the basin, washing his hands. Dino, who had been casually leaning against the wall, embraced him from the back, entangling his arms around Hibari's slender frame.

"It's a pity you have to go," he mumbled into the Japanese's ear.

"I have to protect Namimori from those damn herbivores."

"I know."

Hibari turned off the faucet, but didn't walk away. Neither of them spoke. Dino was staring intently into Hibari's reflection.

The Japanese took the blonde's hand and laced their fingers together.

"Don't die, or I'll bite you to death."

Now it seemed like he would have to fulfill his promise. How ironic.

-x-

The mansion didn't look well from the outside. In fact, it didn't look like a mansion at all, only the smoking ruins; an optimistic outset indeed.

After a short visit inside, Hibari could clearly state that if someone was there during the attack, the chances of surviving were almost non-existing.

He stared at the ashes with deeply hidden horror. On his way out, he slammed his fist onto the wall. It didn't make him feel any better; only the pain in his arm joined the sudden aching in his chest.

-x-

It was so inconceivable. The Bucking Horse has always been invincible. (Though who can be immune to gunfire?)

Hibari entered a small cafe to drink some cappuccino and maybe gather his thoughts. Too late did he realise that it was the very same cafe Dino used to take him to show the Japanese the taste of real Italian coffee (not that something they have elsewhere). He mentally slapped himself. He wasn't afraid of memories this place could evoke. Such a thing was for herbivores.

He ordered a cappuccino with a glare and a low growl towards the waitress. He might as well take it out on some innocent woman, after all.

The coffee he was brought didn't taste properly; too bitter, and Hibari wasn't the type of person who would add sugar.

When he put the cup down on the table, he seemed completely normal; no one would notice how his hand shook a little.

"Here you are, Kyoya." Dino beamed, putting a cup on the table before the boy.

Hibari looked at the cup suspiciously and took a sip. Dino laughed. And leaned over the table, licking cream off Hibari's upper lip.

"It happens when you drink cappuccino for the first time," he said, and kissed him fully.

Hibari was too startled and too busy trying not to blush to smack the stupid Italian hard on his stupid blonde head.

Hibari tossed some money on the table and left.

"Disgusting."

-x-

"And how it was in Italy, Hibari-san?" Tsuna asked, standing in the doorframe.

Hibari froze with his cup halfway to the mouth.

"I presume he's dead." He struggled for his voice not to waver.

Look what you've made of me, baka.

"Oh." That certainly wasn't an answer Tsuna had expected. "You're... sure?"

"He had a low chance of surviving."

Leave, please, just leave. You will want to give me comfort and I don't need any. Not from you.

Maybe it was hyper-intuition or something else – but Tsuna decided to leave, fortunately without a word.

Though he didn't leave soon enough; he managed to see Hibari hiding his face in his palms.

The Vongola regretted he couldn't bring Hibari any solace; but it's not like he would let him.

-x-

Hibari hasn't shed a single tear since he first parted with Dino, and that didn't count because he was young and influenced. He wouldn't have noticed it then if the Italian hadn't told him.

He didn't want to mourn; breaking down was way too pathetic.

So he stands by the grave – a symbolic grave in Namimori as the dark clouds swirl up in the sky. It will rain soon.

He is holding a bunch of red roses – he doesn't think any other flowers would be acceptable.

It's been so many years – as many as the half-rotten bouquets on the marble – and he still can't let him go. Time stands still for him, because he is waiting – always waiting, in a very obscure way. He won't let it show. But there always will be a tinge of anticipation, and maybe his heart will skip a bit when he will see a familiar-looking blonde head—

The rain begins to fall.

He places the roses on the grave and turns away. Only raindrops are running down his face, soaking his expensive suit.

Hibari won't shed any tears; tears would be a death sentence. He would admit defeat.

And he would rather be haunted forever than let him go.