A/N: April… was… months ago. Dx; I had blockage issues and I'm still not totally satisfied with this chapter, but I promised myself I'd update. ^^; -sweatdrop- And I promised ChiChi, so. She'd beat me with a stick if I didn't soon, lawlz.

Here's stage three. 8D

I don't own DGM. X3;

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Five Stages of Loss:

I – Denial

II – Anger

III – Bargaining

IV – Depression

V – Acceptance

.x.x.x.

When he woke up Lavi was next to Tyki. He'd done that before; plenty of times. Tyki's flesh was warm on his, with his toned dark stomach moving gently up and down. Breathing, just breathing.

Lavi rubbed his eye, which was feeling fuzzy and still clogged with sleep. What was worse was that the sun was peering in on him like an arrow. With a soft groan, he tried to block it with the back of his hand. Try as he might, the red haired exorcist couldn't manage to get it to stop glaring in his face.

Jeez, I've never had this problem before, so why…

Ah. That's right. I haven't.

He hadn't.

Either the sun had risen unusually early, or he had risen unusually late. Dangerously late, he could even go so far as to say. Generally he would have begun on his way back to the Order quite a long while before there was any light, let alone such bright light.

What time was it?

God, it didn't matter.

He was in trouble, that's all there was to it.

Awh…I'm an idiot. They're going to be frantic about where I am, especially old Panda… I'll have to make up a damn great lie. Well, I'm sure as hell awake now.

And when the body next to him shifted and murmured his name sleepily, Lavi was reminded exactly why he was feeling endangered.

The sun in his eyes was nothing compared to the face. "Tyki…" He whispered, shocked for some reason. "What time is it, exactly…?"

The Noah massaged his forehead and blinked. "Noon, maybe?"

I should have been gone hours ago.

No, actually…

I shouldn't have been gone hours ago, because I shouldn't have been here.

Honestly, the Bookman had already given up inwardly on not developing emotional ties. Those were for his comrades, and with those he had the desire to protect.

Physical desires, like this with Tyki Mikk, like with this enemy—

Those were doing utterly nothing to protect his friends.

I can't let this sort of thing happen again… Lavi's eye went blank as his brain tried to process and plan and fix. His existence was intended to be more of a machine than a feeling person, after all. Lavi should have easily been able to find a way to fix his blatant mistake.

Mistakes. Plural. Oh, because this was so not the first time he'd stupidly been with Tyki. Mikk, been with Mikk.

Calling him by his first name made Lavi start to think it was okay to care for him.

(It was scaring him, this noon sun and rationalization. But the Bookman machine was louder at the moment than the Lavi with other thoughts.)

Tyki – Mikk – was looking at him oddly, almost expectantly. "Are you alright? Hey, you seem distracted…"

Ha, distracted? I've been so distracted lately that it is going to cost more than just me: Panda, my friends, the whole Order, the world – which might actually deserve being helped after all…

Was this another emotion? 'Distress'? 'Lavi' was experiencing 'distress'?

Well, as it was turning out, 'Lavi' was looking like quite the fool to the responsible Bookman part of himself.

"Rabbit, are you even listening? Hey—" Concerned, the Noah reached out and caught Lavi's chin in his fingers, tilting his head up to lock eyes. "Bad dream or something…?"

But 'Lavi' was the one who looked out of his eye, and at Tyki. Quieting the fretful Bookman inside him, Lavi tried his best to give Tyki a convincing grin. "Yeah, I think I might have had a bad dream…but it's okay, I don't even remember it now… Hey, so listen."

Just give me this one more day with him, okay?

"Yes…?"

"Today, since you're so warm and cuddly, I'll stay with you. It's too late to go back to the Order anyway… I can tell them I got conked on the head by some girl who didn't appreciate me flirting with her or something and was unconscious for hours."

Give me this one more day and I promise… I'll never see him again. One more day and then I promise.

The puzzled stare from Tyki made him nervous, and the redhead wondered if he could tell something was very wrong. After an awkward moment though, the Pleasure smiled and nodded curtly. "I imagine you expect me to show you a good time, then? There's actually a few things I've been thinking of…"

"And they are…?" Lavi moved to bury his face in Tyki's neck, but he found himself pried away."

"Ah-ah. Get dressed for them. We could be normal people today, if you'd like."

There was nothing that sounded sweeter than to be a normal person…he often used to try to imagine what it might feel like not to have some grand preplanned destiny.

It sounded very nice. Looked it, at least.

Regular people didn't ever have to worry if they were allowed to be smiling and mean it.

"Okay."

One day, and I promise, I swear.

…Do you really, 'Lavi'?

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"Are you sure nothing's wrong? You're unusually quiet." The Noah observed, looking over him as they sipped at drinks. "You are hiding something from me, rabbit."

"It's nothing, alright?" Lavi winced, waving it off nonetheless. Though he knew it would turn out to be wishful thinking, he'd been hoping he could simply slip off and never tell Tyki it had to be all over.

Had to.

Despite him technically knowing why it had to, he still didn't understand.

Hoping it would numb the agony of the invisible gashes strewn over his conflicted body, he let Tyki take him around as a normal person the rest of their fading day.

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The arrival of evening dark never seemed to rest more heavily in the Bookman's urging blood. The moon's silver half-slice staring daringly down at him, stern and yet remorseful as well.

He swallowed. This was the part where he left. He and Tyki were facing each other, embraced before he was to return to the Order, full of excuses.

Full of excuses, and according to the dutiful parts of his brain, for the last time, thank you.

About to leave the embrace and smoothly trickle away, disappear, Lavi's breath caught in surprise when Tyki grabbed his arm. A stinging filled up his chest like a syringe drawing blood. "Er," he tried to chuckle casually, "Babe, I need my arm back, please…?"

Inquisitive, the Pleasure again looked at him. Sighing after a bit, he loosened his grip and let Lavi's limp hand fall away. "Sorry. Just…I got another odd feeling. I don't know why, but today…never mind, bunny."

His teeth ground guiltily together. "Oh." Lingering longer than he ever should have, he drew himself once more back into Tyki's chest and pressed his lips against the older man's cheek. With a tender kiss there, he whispered, "Goodbye."

Far too serious.

It sounded far too serious.

The Noah blinked once, and his mouth twitched. That wasn't right, the way that his rabbit had said that. And not to mention how his rabbit had not been right all day.

Carefully, gentlemanly, he nodded, but was all the more suspicious, panic stricken, confused. "Y…yes. I'll…see you soon, bunny."

He waited for the reply.

"Bunny? I said I'll see you s—"

"I'm sorry."

It was a tremble of words.

Tyki's eyes narrowed, suspect. On guard, his own tone lowered to something more serious as well. "Excuse me, dear?"

The silence was of the Pleasure's heart being stricken into chalk crumbles.

It hurt to swallow chalk. Devito had dared Jasdero to do that last week, and he was still angry at his twin for making him.

His crumbly heart clenched.

Lavi's lips finally moved. "I can't."

Suspended in the tricky moment, he repeated, "And I said, excuse me, dear…? Are you making a cute joke…?"

The Noah didn't like it when the moment he was finally, blissfully content with something, it was taken away.

When he had told Road 'maybe he loved Lavi', he had really been saying yes.

He didn't fancy the feeling of a miserable lonely road. He'd settled for that so long after he'd been unable to see his vagabond companions and before he'd at last found dear Lavi; he didn't want it again.

"No." Lavi, the sad, human Lavi uttered, wishing nothing more than to be a regular sad human as Tyki had shown him in the hours of their day. "It's not…I… I can't see you soon. Not any more. Goodb—"

"No, Lavi."

Tyki's hand was inside the exorcist's chest without warning.

The wings of a butterfly tickled his lungs dangerously, and he was smart enough to stop talking and apologizing.

Disappointed in both of them, Tyki smiled an empty little grin. His eyes genuinely were regretful, but frightened and desperate enough to be telling the truth. "No, I'm sorry, Bunny, but I believe I told you I loved you once or twice…? Lovely, I meant it. I can't let you 'not see me soon', for that reason."

Terrified, the redhead nodded, unbreathing.

The Pleasure's tormented smile vanished into simple agony. "You understand? If you don't come back to me, I'll let this Tease eat you up like a chocolate Easter rabbit. And I… I would hate that."

I know. I know you mean it when you say that.

"So please, Lavi? When you say goodbye to me tonight, don't you dare mean it like that."

Lavi swallowed. And I know you mean that too. The Tease's wings beat daringly in his ribs as Tyki drew out his hand, leaving the obedient butterfly inside, hungry and waiting for the order to kill. "All… Alright. I'll be back." The Bookman stammered, not certain yet if he was being honest.

At the moment, did he care if he was alive or dead?

Frantic, lonely Tyki exhaled. "Good…" Trying to make it up to him, he gave Lavi a brief kiss on the hand. "I'll see you soon. I should hope.

As Lavi turned to begin his way back, he still had no idea. He was almost comforted, in an odd way, by the ticking bomb inside him. At least it was like a bit of Tyki.

Observing as his dear rabbit left, the Noah couldn't help but notice his hands had begun to shake. He brought them closer to his eyes to examine them, and could do no more than close those eyes.

Lavi.

Lavi, I doubt if I could tell the Tease to hurt you…

But what else am I supposed to do to get you to stay?

Pleasure was a difficult, selfish business at times, after all.

No was a difficult answer to take, especially when he could tell Lavi wasn't even sure if that was what he wanted. Well, Tyki could help him decide, and free of charge as long as he didn't choose to pay with his beloved, beautiful life.

What a bargain, yes?

But as he began to lose sight of Lavi's retreating form, it seemed less and less that way.

Was he doing something wrong, now?

Lavi had never made him feel so suddenly sad before.

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A/N: I promise next chapter I'll make more sense. xD; This was the hardest part to write, and I knew it would be…but…did any of it make sense? D8 Part four will be out soon to make up for my recent updating failure. ^^; -shot-

xD; Damn.