What Really Brings Joy

I do not own Meine Liebe or its characters, they belong to Yuki Kaori-san.

Camus was a sickly child, often spending his days either inside the house or even in bed. He didn't like that one bit, he wanted to do the things boys his age did, he wanted to play, run, even climb a tree. But, his weakened body always found some way to stop him. He voiced his concerns to Leohart, his older brother.

"I know you don't like this, Camus, but if anything were to happen to you, none of us would be able to forgive ourselves," was Leohart's response.

The small boy nodded, a frown marking his pale features. "Brother, is there some way at all I can go outside? Any way at all?"

Leohart sighed. "I'm not sure. You're just too ill to go outside."

"I don't even have to play or run around. I would like to sit outside, if only for a few minutes. I don't like always being inside the house."

Leohart thought about it. "Do you promise you won't run around and over-exert yourself?"

"I promise."

"Maybe I can take you out into the garden tomorrow."

He smiled slightly. "Thank you, brother."

"But, you won't be able to go out there if you don't get some rest." He helped his younger brother lie down and tucked in his blankets. "Sweet dreams, Camus."

He nodded and closed his eyes. He hoped he would have sweet dreams.

The next day, Leohart carried his brother out to the garden and sat him on a seat their mother occupied whenever she decided she wished to spend the day outdoors. "Are you alright?"

Camus nodded. He gazed at all of the different flowers before him and smiled gently. He closed his eyes and listened as many different whispers filled the air. "Brother, can you please move me to the rose bush over there?"

Leohart hesitated, but finally nodded. He scooped his brother up and carried him over to the rose bush in the center of the garden. "But, not for too long, okay?"

"Okay." Camus had a close look at the flowers he'd never seen before this day. "They are beautiful, brother."

"Indeed they are."

Camus gazed at one rose as it greeted him. He responded silently and soon found himself having a conversation with the flower, more joining in as time progressed.

"Alright, Camus. It's time for you to go back inside now."

"Okay." Camus allowed himself to be scooped up by his brother and didn't protest as he was carried back into his bedroom. "Brother, if I am well enough, can you please bring me out here again tomorrow?"

"Only if you are well enough."

Weeks passed, and Camus had been taken out to the garden every single day. However, that day when his brother was meant to take him out to the garden again, he refused to be carried. "I am feeling much better, brother." He proved it by walking out to the garden and didn't feel as if he'd pushed himself past his limit.

Leohart was surprised that his brother was doing so well. No matter what medications the doctors had given him, no matter what the doctors tried without medication, nothing had seemed to work. He had to admit that Camus not only appeared healthier, but happier as well. Could it be because he would always come out to the garden? When we sheltered him inside, were we doing more harm than good? He watched as his brother walked over to the same rose bush and kneel down. Camus seems to love that rose bush. Maybe... He approached his brother and knelt down beside him. "What is it, Camus?"

Camus smiled at his brother. "The flowers are saying that I am looking much better than the day I first came outside. They said they have you to thank for bringing me out here, even though I was pretty weak back then."

Leohart didn't say anything about Camus speaking to the flowers. "It's true, you no longer appear as sickly as you did five weeks ago. You're even able to walk out here yourself. And, you are smiling a lot more."

"I have you to thank, brother. You brought me out here. I am happy to see this garden so full of life everyday. I am happy to speak with the roses. I may not be strong enough to run and play like boys my age do everyday, but this is fine for me."

"I'm glad. But, Camus..."

"Yes?"

"Let's not tell anybody else about you talking to the flowers. They won't understand."

"Okay then. It's a secret between the flowers, you, Lui and myself."

Leohart blinked. "When did Ludwig find out?"

"The party last week."

"What did he say?"

"He asked me what the flowers were telling me. He smiled. Cousin Lui wasn't smiling until I told him that, he was very upset."

Leohart smiled gently. "Then these flowers are responsible for bringing happiness to you and our cousin."

"And the flowers in this garden are happy as well."