Just grin and bare it. Sometimes that solution seemed so perfectly flawed. The smile you bore on the outside could be as thick as armour, and sometimes people wouldn't even know the difference, though inside you were a wreck of your former self. Maybe the tears weren't on the outside, but inside they stung all the more. And each crude comment you had once shrugged aside pierced through your exterior, the smile lingering all the more.

He pursed his lips together, body shivering head to toe while his tears fluttered down this thick eyelashes, leaving smooth trails along his cheeks, unseen through the gloom and the rain. His fingers shook around the small cellphone in his grasp. His throat tight as he swallowed regretfully. He hated doing this. Hated making his friend make such compensations for him. It made him feel like a burden. Pathetic, even.

Dialling the phone number and placing the phone against his ear, he took a sharp intake of breath as he heard the phone answered on the other end.

"Shuichi? What time is it?" Hiro mumbled into the receiver, it was clear he'd been sleeping, the tone in his voice made that much obvious. Pausing, Shuichi bit down on his lip. How could he keep doing this to Hiro? It wasn't fair on him, and he knew that. "Shuichi?" He continued into the phone, Shuichi stifling a whimper, "N-Nevermind…Hiro…" He mumbled weakly.

"Where are you?" Hiro questioned finally, a light tone of concern to his voice as the male mumbled his location into the phone then lowered it from his ear, hanging up as the tears clung to his cheeks, interrupted only when Hiro jogged towards the male, a sigh escaping him. "Why do you keep doing this to yourself, Shuichi?" He murmured, draping his jacket around the small boy and lifting him to his feet and into his arms.

"What did he do to you?" Hiro growled behind his teeth, Shuichi resting his head against Hiro's chest and closing his eyes, his fingers clenching into Hiro's shirt tearfully. "I'm just not good enough," He whispered, his cheeks baring the sign of his tears as he shamefully buried his face into his friend's shoulder, sobbing quietly as the male brought him inside his apartment, placing him amongst the bed and finding him some clothing.

Hiro was such a good friend. Too good. He was only so good and kind, Shuichi felt completely useless around him, unable to do anything in return. He didn't move as Hiro changed his clothing, how long had it been since the first time he'd been found in such a condition? He doubted Hiro would even take a second glance at him anyway. Who would?

Bringing his hands up to bury his face into, he felt Hiro prevent such a move, a knee either side the vocalists body and gently brushing his tears aside. "Shuichi, you can't let him hurt you like this," Hiro whispered and Shuichi shuddered, shaking his head. "It's my own fault-I'm not good enough. Yuki…He deserves better…" He mumbled weakly, unable to hold back the tears which peeked at the corners of his eyes.

"Shut up!"

Startled, Shuichi glanced up at Hiro with a confused expression, "Shut up about it, already. You are too damn good for him. You don't have to let him treat you like this all the time. You could do so much better," Hiro insisted, Shuichi biting at his lower lip, "But who would ever want me?" He mumbled softly, "I can't be alone, Hiro-I'm scared.." Shuichi whispered quietly.

"I would," Hiro spoke, "I'd never hurt you like him, never-Shuichi, I want to protect you," Hiro whispered, tracing his fingers down Shuichi's jaw line, "Shuichi, I love you," He concluded quietly, bringing his lips inches from Shuichi's with a weak smile, "And I know even I'm not good enough for you, but can I try? I want to be the one to make you happy," He murmured softly, holding Shuichi near, the pink-haired male sniffling and clinging to Hiro.

"Hiro…" Shuichi whispered, slipping his arms around the males shoulders and bringing their lips together gently, feeling Hiro take over the kiss, his tongue slipping between the others lips and his hands sliding beneath Shuichi's shirt, bringing it from his body and tossing it aside, their bodies entangled in a passionate manner. Skin against skin and barely any definition where one begun and the other ended.

--

The bleeping of the clock at the side of his bed roused Hiro and groaning, he reached out, slamming his hand down on the sleep button, turning to draw the pink-haired male near only finding his arms grasping at air and his eyes cracked open finding himself in bed alone. Groaning and sitting up, he threw a robe around his shoulders and strode out to the kitchen.

"Shuichi?" He called, his eyes happening open a note and grasping it, his brows knitted together in a frown. 'Gone Home. I'm Sorry,' Tossing the note aside, Hiro frowned. He should have known, compared to Yuki, he would always come second.