Disclaimer: Don't own, don't sue... please

Here's the companion piece... It's a little bit sadder than the other.


When Tieria woke up to warm feet and warmer breath upon the back of his neck, he couldn't help the small, pleased smile that came over his face. With his eyes still closed, he felt his heart and breath working in sync with Lockon's.

It was time like this that Tieria' realized how human his lover had forced him to become. Before they had began this affair he would have never allowed anyone to get close to him, let alone close enough to breathe on the back of his neck. The young Innovator was almost shocked by the closeness he felt with Lockon. It wasn't the physical closeness; Tieria knew that it could be acclimated to. No, it was the emotional closeness, the emotional ties he was developing to the Irishman.

Shifting slowly as not to wake Lockon up, Tieria moved around to study the face of his lover. Even at twenty-four, Lockon had a number of fine lines around his eyes. Strangely enough Tieria wasn't certain if they were from the stress of being a Meister or all of the laughing the red-head did. With slow and soft fingers, he traced the lines, mapping their location. He knew he would probably never have those, thanks to genetic manipulation. But he also knew that the likelihood of him living long enough to find out, was next to nothing. There's was a harsh job that would one day claim both of their lives, his deepest and dearest wish, which even Veda didn't know, was that he would die first. He didn't want to take the chance that he would live for possibly hundreds of years after Lockon was lost to him.

"You're having too many heavy thoughts for first thing in the morning." Lockon said in a sleepy voice as he cracked open a single eye.

Tieria smirked slightly. "Better to have too many heavy thoughts, than no thoughts at all."

This made Lockon grin, which made the lines around his eyes standout. "I suppose this is true… I'll have to tell Allelujah to work on that."

Snorting, Tieria sat up and pulled the sheet up over his thin form. "Of course… Haptism is the one you blame. Get up… I don't want another one of Haro loving wake-up calls." The rather heavy orange AI had a habit of landing on the bed and bouncing until they succumbed to the lower gravity and floated off of the bed.

"You're not going to tell me what got you thinking, are you?" Lockon asked as he sat up and wrapped around Tieria, before the smaller man could get up.

With a little sigh, Tieria turned and kissed Lockon lightly. "I was just being a little selfish in my wishes."

Lockon snuggled to his back, sharing warmth while thinking. "Everyone has the right to be selfish once in a while… what was your selfish wish?"

"I… want to die first." Tieria told him softly. He knew it would upset the other man, but he also knew that Lockon would recognize a lie.

"That's a strange thing to be selfish about. Why would you want that… and what got you thinking about such a thing?" Lockon brushed his hair aside so that he could study Tieria's face.

Tieria settled his head back and closed his eyes, knowing the embarrassment he would feel after this admission. "I was looking at your laugh-lines and thinking about how it would take many centuries for me to get them, if I ever did… centuries that you at your healthiest wouldn't have. If I were to survive the war and barring any accidents, I could conceivably live long after you and our comrades have died. Also, the likelihood of both of us surviving this war is almost infinitesimally small… I'm being selfish because I don't want to live without you."

Lockon sighed and held him closer. "I understand that you don't want to be left behind… but I'm going to be selfish as well. I want you to live a long happy life… with or without me. The only way I could go to the afterworld peacefully, is knowing that you would live on."

"We both can't be selfish." Tieria murmured as he turned his face into Lockon's throat.

"How about we promise to find one another in the next world?" Lockon murmured against the forehead by his mouth.

Tieria nodded a little. "Then I will believe in an afterlife, if you promise to meet me there. You've never broken your promises."

This made Lockon smile sadly and hold him tighter. "Then I swear, when the time comes, which ever goes first, I will find you there." Shifting Tieria up a little, he sealed his oath with an intense kiss.


AN: I sometimes hate the angst that I write. Please let me know what you think.