A/N: This was requested by OMG Ish Luff, who is awesome and had the one-hundredth review on my fic Hello Lovely, I Hate You. :3 Sorry it took so long, honey. xD But, I really like it and so I hope everyone else will too! I love dark, angst-y KakuHida, so this was a lot of fun. -grin- Enjoy!

~Insert super-duper disclaiming action here~

--

Euphoria

There were two things in the world that Hidan loved: Jashin and Kakuzu. For Hidan to love something, he really had to love it. Throwing that word around loosely wasn't something he did. Love meant utter, unconditional submission simply because you trusted in whatever it was that you couldn't live without.

He could count plenty of reasons why he loved Jashin. As for Kakuzu though, Hidan was still having issues with finding these reasons. He thought he had them, but then just as soon as he was sure he could name them with all his heart, he found himself doubting them all the same.

"Kakuzu, you make me crazy."

How many times had he kissed him?

"Kakuzu, you make me so crazy."

How many times had he slept next to him?

"So crazy…"

But how many reasons did he have for loving him…?

"Kakuzu."

A big blank space flashed in Hidan's mind. Why did he love him? As he wondered that, he noticed another blank space. When had Kakuzu ever returned that word 'love'? Hidan knew his partner didn't talk much. He preferred using money or actions to get his point across. Yes, there was tenderness in his touch, but the insecurity nagging in his gut wouldn't go away.

He shoved it out of his head every time it tried to come, grimacing in distaste. Of course Kakuzu loved him. Of course he did.

--

The warm blood splattered on his face made him grin, and the searing pain in his chest brought a long sigh of happiness from his throat. "Ohh, that fucking hurts. Ouch. Oh, that's fucking good…"

Kakuzu watched boredly as the albino finished his ritual. Leaning against a tree trunk, he drawled, "Would you hurry up? This is already the second time today you've held us up. Time is money, haven't I told you before?"

"Aw, spoil sport." He rose, pulling the pike out of his chest with a grunt. "Fuck! Ouch." A wide smile was on his face, though. Nothing like a lovely dose of suffering to make him feel better. It was impossible to let anything get to him after bleeding a while. When Jashin, was pleased, Hidan was pleased. He was happy, and not just smiling in sadistic mirth because the world was so pathetically stupid.

Oh Jashin, it was so pathetically stupid. So many heathens, so little time…

Putting away his collapsible pike, Hidan came padding to Kakuzu. Stretching his arms, he sighed with pleasure as he leaned his head against his lover's shoulder. "Ah, that was great. You are missing out, Kakuzu-chan."

"I hardly think so." He growled, picking up his money case again. "Let's go already."

"Stop and smell the flowers a minute, would you?" Hidan groaned, bustling after him. He was always in such a hurry…

"Smell the flowers? Like hell. Those stupid things make me sneeze."

Chuckling, Hidan shrugged. "Your point? They're still air fresheners, technically. Free air fresheners. I know you're into all that free shit."

"How about you shut up for a while?"

Hidan blinked. "Someone's getting testy all of a sudden. Having PMS issues, are we? Konan probably has some stuff for that you could use."

Annoyed green eyes flashed. "Hidan. I said shut your goddamned mouth. You're polluting the air worse than pollen does."

The Jashinist's shoulders slumped, but he stopped commenting and shuffled along awkwardly. Kakuzu was being a bitch again. What the hell was his problem? All he was trying to do was make a little conversation…walking for ages in silence was so boring. Eventually he swallowed and mentioned, "So, um. Did you get a new mask? It looks good…"

Without turning to look at him, Kakuzu said dryly, "Why are you trying to make small talk? Tell me, how is that going to get us back to the base faster to deliver this money?"

"Jashin, you are PMSing, aren't you?!" Hidan snapped back, balling his hands into tight fists. Fine. Kakuzu was right, there was no fucking point. He was only going to shoot down everything he said anyway.

"Someday I swear I am going to kill you. I mean it."

Out of habit, Hidan returned, "Yeah, like you could pull it off…" But his joy from the daily ritual had worn thin, and he was actually wondering now if Kakuzu would kill him. Not physically, because even he wasn't good enough for that, but something inside Hidan was just wondering…just wondering a little if hurting something inside his heart and head would count as killing him. Would it? For good measure, he repeated himself, "Like you could pull it off."

Just in case Kakuzu could pull it off in one way or another.

--

By nightfall they were still only about halfway back to the hideout (and of course Kakuzu was blaming Hidan's long prayers for the hold up), so it was agreed they would spring for a room at the dingy inn they came upon.

Grudgingly handing over a few bank notes to the manager, the miser didn't hide his contempt. Hidan shrank back against the wall, pouting. Motherfucking guilt trips! Did his partner have to be so into putting his on these motherfucking guilt trips all the time?!

Kakuzu got their key and Hidan followed him up the stairs. "Um…are you pissed at me cuz this is expensive?"

"Hm? No."

What the fuck? That was shocking beyond shocking. "Have you gone senile?!"

"Those were counterfeit, you idiot." Kakuzu chuckled, amused. "It's called I'm a greedy bastard, and it's not like anyone expects people from the Akatsuki to be model citizens. If you haven't noticed, we're classified as evil S-ranked criminals. I think somewhere along the line we might be doing something illegal…"

He wrinkled his nose, crossing his arms across his chest. "Damn it, would you stop making me feel fucking inferior for one minute?!"

The tall man bristled at first, but too a breath and relaxed. "Sorry then," he murmured, turning the key in a door at the end of the hall. It creaked open, and he announced, "Here."

He'd said the word sorry? Him? Okay… That was new. "I'm not tired, so do you care if I leave one light on?" He said carefully, no sure about the freaky random mood swings.

"Good," Kakuzu set down his suitcase and strode over, snaking his arms around Hidan's waist. "Because I'm not tired either." He whispered seductively, pulling off his mask and nipping his partner's ear.

Hidan shivered and moaned softly, a slight smile on his lips. See? He doesn't hate me. He doesn't want to kill me.

I know he'd never kill me.

A long tendril crept out from Kakuzu's arm and caressed Hidan's neck. The Jashinist spun around in a heavy kiss, but Kakuzu pushed him backward, slamming him into a wall. Hidan grinned, not caring that he couldn't' breath. Being with him like this made happy, made him ecstatic, made him alive. It made him absolutely crazy, yes, sure, but that was how he liked it. This euphoric pleasure bubbling rampant through his veins. He was in it for the high, this high, and as long as the high kept coming back to him, he'd stay happy. As long as he could have Kakuzu so close like this it would prove it would all turn out okay, right?

There would always be another high.

There would always be another night…

Tell me I'm right…

Their cloaks discarded, Kakuzu was leading him steadily to one of the beds. Without breaking their lips, Hidan slid a hand under Kakuzu's shirt. Tugging it up, they pulled away from each other just long enough to get it off. Kakuzu moved to leave his mark on Hidan's neck while they fumbled with their pants as well.

If Kakuzu wanted him, that meant he didn't hate him. Even though he annoyed the shit out of him and consistently ruined his schedule, he didn't hate him.

"Kakuzu-chan," Hidan whispered hoarsely, "I love you."

He stopped a second, standing awkwardly rigid. "That's…good." He muttered, and Hidan's heart sank some. He clung to the stitched-nin, desperate to have his words given back someday.

Inside Kakuzu's arms it was warm, and he let the warmth sink back into his heart. At least he was safe there. At least he felt safe. He wanted closer, but for now this seemed to be the closest he could get…

--

"Okay, Mr. I'm-A-Jashinist-So-I'm-Better-Than-You, what's wrong, un?"

"Fuck off, Blondie." He grunted sourly, throwing a potato chip at Deidara's stupid neon head. "Nothing's wrong." He and Kakuzu had made it back to the Akatsuki lair, and was sufficiently pissed off enough to start with. Obviously Deidara didn't know what was good for him. (Decidedly, bothering and angry, depressed Hidan was not.)

"Jesus, what did I do, un?" The bomber hissed, dodging the flying chip. He paused and laughed bitterly. "Never mind, I take that back. I meant 'Jashin, what did I do?'. I promise, un. Really."

"Better than nothing." Hidan murmured, "But go the hell away, would you?!"

Deidara smiled sweetly and plopped down next to him on the couch. "Nope, un! I refuse to let you wallow alone. And believe me, un, you are wallowing. What did Kakuzu do, un?"
"You know about Kakuzu?!" Hidan gasped, staring at him in shock. "Tell me we're not as obvious about it as you and Sasori! Seriously, you two are so lovey, it's sickening—" His voice caught. At least they are lovey.

For once, Hidan was feeling just the tiniest bit jealous of Deidara.

"Obvious, un? Not really. Well… I noticed because let's face it, un: I'm a hopeless romantic." He smirked, chuckling, "So says Danna, un. He's such an idiot. Oh, but we're talking about you, aren't we, un?"

Dammit, Hidan had been hoping Blondie would get carried away with his own love life and forget about the albino's. Heaving out a long sigh, Hidan fractured and gave in. Maybe since he was a self-proclaimed 'hopeless romantic' he could have at least somewhat of an idea of what to do. "Kakuzu isn't exactly open about anything. I mean, I don't fucking, like, expect him to be, but even when it's only us…even when we're…"

Deidara was grinning like a fool. "Getting it on, un?" He suggested.

"Would you shut up, Blondie?!"

"Hee! Sorry, un. I couldn't resist."

"Jashin, you are so fucking stupid. How does Red stand you?!"

"Meh, you're one to talk, Hidan. How does Kakuzu stand you?" That comment was met by a frozen, hopeless look in Hidan's eyes, Deidara cringed and apologized, "Ah. I guess I shouldn't have said that, un. So it's really that bad with him right now, un?"

Hidan nodded slowly, his brain a dark, throbbing mess. "Like I wonder sometimes of he even…cares."

"Go on, un?"

"Like, he's so…" He stopped. "You know what? Why am I even fucking talking to you?! I can't fucking stand you and your damn uns!"

The bomber laughed bitterly. "Because if you ask me, you're looking desperate for some help, un."

Damn it. Being noticeably fucked up was what he hated the most… He sighed, "Really?"

"Really, un."

Hidan crinkled the potato chip bag loudly just to fill the stinging silence. Painful silences made him twitch. "Jashin. I don't know what to do. Um…I have a question, Blondie. So listen the fuck up. you know this shit isn't easy for me, and I don't wanna have to say it again."

"Sure, un…"

Hidan sucked in a deep breath and spat out the words quickly. "How often does Sasori say he loves you?"

Deidara blinked when he first heard it. "Oh." He said. Apparently that wasn't the sort of questing he'd been anticipating. "Oh." He contemplated, and Hidan could plainly tell that his heart was glowing inside. "I don't know, un. A lot, actually. You probably wouldn't think a puppet could say that, but…" Fuck, he was glowing so much! "But yeah, un. Danna's very sweet. Very, very sweet, un…!"

Shit.

Shit on a stick!

"Jashin damned motherfucker…!" Hidan whispered in a low hiss, staring helplessly at his hands. He was so afraid he would receive that answer. If even someone like Akasuna no Sasori could tell his lover that, then shouldn't a bastard like Kakuzu? If they really loved a person? Couldn't they? Couldn't they say it?

Two words and Hidan could avoid all of this desperate, desolate shit between nights with him. Two words and he would always feel needed, not just during those nights.

Two words and he could make it better. The bandage could cover the wound and Hidan wouldn't have to turn to motherfucking Deidara for help.

It was honestly humiliating for him. Humiliating and there was nothing he could do about it.

I might as well come out and say it already. I know I've been wondering it fir a while now, but I don't want to believe it. I don't fucking want to believe it. "Blondie," he started wearily, "Do you think Kakuzu has been using me for sex…?"

There. He'd said it. Finally he'd gotten it out and said it aloud. Finally…finally.

He wondered why it didn't make him feel any better.

Deidara fumbled around for something to say. Hidan could understand why. Seriously, what did a person say back to that? He sure as hell didn't have any clue. If he had a clue, he'd be solving things himself, Jashin damn it.

After a long deliberation, Deidara questioned, "Are you sure, un?"

Throwing his head back against the cushion, Hidan groaned, "I don't know! That's why I'm asking you, Blondie! Okay, look. I've told him that I love him. I do not say that. Ever. To anyone or about anything. Period. But I've told it to him, damn it, to him. And all he does is…"

"Is, un?"

"Nothing." He said blankly, "He does nothing. Like, if he would even kiss me in public I would know he did, but…nothing."

Deidara chewed on his lip. "Well, un. Yeah, un… I'm not sure either, then."

Crying out in frustration, he slammed his head back a few more times. Great. Wonderful. Absolutely peachy. Everything was so pathetic he had a satirical urge to start gagging out laughter so long and hard that he'd loose his voice. Maybe if he lost his voice he'd stop making the mistake of handing Kakuzu his heart on a shish kabob skewer to eat up and chew on as he pleased. "You're a lot of fuckin' help, Blondie!"

That made him wince. "All I have to say is maybe to go ahead and ask him out right, un ask him if he is using you for…"

"Like I could do that." His stomach was churning only thinking about it. Deidara didn't understand how difficult a person Kakuzu was even when he was in a good mood. He was never the most pleasant company in the world… Ha, well, but that was part of the reason masochistic Hidan did love him.

Funny, he thought, how he was a lifelong masochist who wanted out of the torture… The ultimate irony, he found it to be.

Still, he knew his idea of Kakuzu using him was a wild notion. He was an insufferable beast of a man, but he wasn't awful enough to do things like that. Only…Hidan still needed that assurance.

"Try, un." Deidara urged him, "You never know. Maybe he'll break down, un. Maybe you two can have a happy ending after all."

"I think you've been reading too many fairy tales." Hidan stated grimly, "I really fucking do."

Sasori's partner shrugged. "It's all I have, un. Sorry."

The Jashinist rubbed a tired eye, pondering. He was rather bloody desperate. Saying he wasn't would be such a huge lie. Deidara's plan wasn't anything he favoured doing at all, but it was also basically the only option if he wanted to get out of this low as fast as he could. Stay out of this low for once. The days had been stretched out for ages since he'd really stayed out of it.

"Hm." He grunted, his mind sore from stress. "Hm…"

Ask Kakuzu outright, plain and simple, what he truly felt for him?

Take it or leave it.

Asking was the single, only thing that lay for taking on the table. He couldn't afford leaving it any longer.

"Blondie, I'm gonna regret this, but I will."

"Really, un?" He perked up. "I guess I should go away now, then. So you can find Kakuzu… Good luck, un."

The obscure artist turned to meander off, but Hidan called to him one more time. "Hey, Blondie, wait!"

He paused in the door frame. "Yeah?"

"…Thank you, Deidara." Damn. Tonight he was making such a fool out of himself, wasn't he? Being grateful to Deidara? Now that had to be a crime. Jashin, that had to be a crime…

The sculptor smiled. "Any time, un. Even though you're still a self centered asshole, you're not so bad sometimes."

"Shut up, fuckface!"

"Nyahh!" Deidara poked his tongue out and wandered off to find Sasori.

Left the only person in the room now, the reality started to sink into Hidan. Tonight he was going to have to confront Kakuzu for the first time.

Confront Kakuzu…

Shit!

--

The thudding of his nervous, jittery heart against the walls of his chest was hard as he watched his confusing partner recount his money. Kakuzu must have felt himself being stared at, because he soon glanced up. "Hidan," he greeted, nodding.

Despite swallowing, his throat was very dry. "Kakuzu, can we talk?"

He gazed carefully back with his captivating emerald eyes. Fuck, Hidan always got so easily lost in them… "Talk about what, exactly?"

Again the zealot swallowed, wishing he had gotten a drink of water before he came here. "About us…?"

"Us?"

"About us." Hidan said the words with more conviction this time. Without sounding like he meant it, Kakuzu would probably blow him off like he always did when they were out on the road together.

"And why is that?"

Here we go. Here we fucking go. Ah, shit. Damn you Deidara, if he flips out on me I'm going to kick your fleeting ass! "You promise you'll listen to me? Not like pretend to listen to me when really you only went back to counting that dumb wad of money? Seriously?"

The stitched-nin rolled his eyes. "Yes."

"Seriously?"

"Yes, seriously, damn it! Say what you want to say, would you?!"

Snippy PMSing bitch. As much a snippy bitch he was, Hidan still wanted to be needed by him. "Okay. So lately I've kind of been getting weird signals from you…?" He looked at him eagerly. "Are you listening?"

"Yes, yes, I'm listening!" Kakuzu huffed. "Can we get this over with before I forget what number I was on? Please."

I want to get it over with too, trust me. "I mean…what I mean is… I guess what my point is is that you have no problem sleeping with me but you do have one saying you love me. And…and it scares me, you know?" He clenched his hands tightly, trying to get them to stop shaking.

Kakuzu seemed frozen in his spot as he digested the words. Slowly melting off his shock, he murmured in a disbelieving monotone, "Don't tell me this. Please don't tell me this, Hidan…"

Hidan winced. "You think I want to be telling you this?! Because I fucking don't. but I have to… I have to because I hate being scared, damn it. I'm sick of it, Kakuzu!"

"Don't tell me this..." Kakuzu repeated, starting to shake his head. Ebony tangles of his hair fell down, covering those beautiful emerald eyes.

Beautiful emerald eyes he always wanted to be look at him, breathing him in.

Loving him…

"Kakuzu-chan, I know you're not good at words, and I suck at them too, but I need something more than only this… Once in a while I want to be pampered like Sasori pampers Deidara… Not all the time, not even half the time, but—"

"Stop it!" He hissed, his eyes wide and pained. "You're being ridiculous. Don't do this. Of course I care about you…"

"Prove it, Kakuzu! I need you to fucking prove it to me! Not only when no one else is looking, either…" Hidan struggled, "It's almost like you're ashamed on me.

"Ashamed of you." He repeated blandly, "Ashamed of you."

"Yeah. That's what it fucking seems like." Hidan spat out the words as if they were poison. "Look, I don't want to talk about this any more. It's making me sick." He admitted, relaxing his tightly balled hands.

Kakuzu sighed. "So what the hell do you want me to do?"

Damn it. "Prove it, I said." He muttered, retreating out the door. "Prove it, if you want to. Or if you even can…"

--

Jashin?

Jashin, are you there…?

So.

That didn't go very well, did it?

No, I didn't think so either…

Ahh.

Yeah, Hidan felt pretty royally fucked.

--

When he passed Hidan in the hallway in the morning, Deidara had Sasori in tow. Seeing the kings of fluff together in all their romantic glory didn't do much for the albino's good natured-ness. "Don't say a fuckin' word, Blondie. Not a fuckin' word."

Deidara cringed and disobeyed him the very moment he ordered him to be quiet. "Oh. This really went that badly, un?" His fingers entangled with Sasori's for comfort. No doubt he was afraid Hidan might hit him for talking…

Instead of bashing his face in, Hidan only groaned. "Dammit, do you ever listen to a word I say?!"

"Nope, un!" Deidara grinned.

"I can't see why he would want to." Sasori offered, "Since you're such an uncouth idiot with no appreciation for art… Nevertheless, I must say I'm sorry about your, ah…problem with Kakuzu."

He blinked, realizing what the puppet master had said. "Oh fuck, Deidara!!" He wheeled on the bomber. "You told him, too?! I swear I'm going to scalp that Jashin damned blonde head of yours!!"

"Lay a hand on him and I will kill you." The redhead stated simply, glaring daggers. There was so much menace in his voice Hidan nearly forgot he was supposedly immortal and the only person who could do anything to hurt him was Kakuzu. Meep, that puppet was scary when he was pissed off…

"Awh," Deidara smirked, "Thank you Danna."

"Yeah, whatever." Hidan huffed, crossing his arms. "Anyway, it sucked. End of story."

"I'm sorry, un…" He sighed sympathetically. "Have you seen him today yet?"

Shaking his head limply, he answered, "No. He hasn't even come out of our room. And I stayed awake all night on the couch being miserable and eating more fucking potato chips…" All that had accomplished was giving him a killer stomach ache and making him feel fat. Misery certainly loved its company, didn't it?

The yellow haired sculptor stared at him piteously. "I am so sorry, un…"

"Yeah, start a pity party why don't you…!" He started to complain, but quickly noticed he didn't have the energy for it nor was he in the mood. Reluctantly, he murmured, "Well. Somebody better be sorry for me. I'm fucking exhausted and I've been through hell…"

Deidara's comforting side was in no short supply. Hesitating only a moment ,he left Sasori and patted Hidan on the head, and hugged him slightly. "Poor Hidan, un…"

"What the hell is that, Blondie?" He glowered boredly, too tired to shove him away like he'd have done any other day. "Sasori no Danna or whatever shitty stupid pet name you call him is right there, you know."

"I'm having a pity party, un."

"Oh…" He must have been more tired than he knew, because he just kept standing there until he heard a door click open.

"Hey, hands off, Blondie! That's my bitch, you whore!"

"Ka…Kakuzu?" Hidan spun around, and before he knew it Deidara had been tossed back to Sasori and he was being urgently kissed by his taller partner. Kakuzu wasn't wasting any time.

The Jashinist let himself melt, blindly pulling himself into Kakuzu. Almost feverishly, the stitched-nin's hands held on to him, tighter than they ever had before.

Surprised that they were actually being allowed to see it, Sasori and Deidara watched, the terrorist blushing with glee. He knew what this meant. It was evident, watching, what it was that was fueling that kiss. Deidara could see, and he smiled for Hidan, curling his own hand back into Sasori's where it belonged.

Deidara could see.

Love.

When it broke, Hidan glanced nervously at his favourite emerald eyes. "What are you doing?"

"I'm proving it to you."