Searching 'Til Dawn

Theme: Night Out

The train travels too fast for him to see the trees outside. They all blur together until the trees are not many, but one old unified trunk flashing before his eyes. The train fled past buildings, breaking the line of trees. The train is going nowhere, but for him, that is fitting. Nowhere is where he wants to be, late in the nighttime hours. He wants to escape the world that lies behind him but knows he can't. So he spends the nights escaping, fleeing into a world that means nothing. He'll go back to somewhere tomorrow, to home and life: to breaking the rules, to hiding, to keeping up his appearances. But for now he doesn't.

Nowhere is supposed to be better and easier, and it is he thinks, except there is little life there. There is only a dead tree and endless winter surrounding him on all sides. He thinks he is winter, the embodiment of the dead season. He'd once felt the fall in his eyes, dying at the thought of loss. But he is already dead, fallen into despair when he'd first discovered the disappearance of his name.

He wonders if it's symbolic, if it's fate to be surrounded by the death of nature, where everything lies frozen inside layers of anguish and confusion.

He'd long waited to be reborn anew on the night train to nowhere.

Silver eyes scanned the platform as he awaited the reverse train. Nowhere was always just beyond his reach and he'd have to return before morning crested over the horizon. The platform had always been empty, so when cobalt eyes caught his gaze from the single bench at the platform's center he hadn't known how to react.

Nodding his head in a polite though silent greeting the lithe boy walked over to the edge of the platform. Sitting down he allowed his legs to dangle over its edge, reveling in the mild freedom he experienced in the action.

"Oi Moyashi, you're going to get hit by the train if you stay there," the other occupant of the desolate platform said from his perch on the bench.

"I'll move by then," the pale boy said as he brushed a lock of white hair from his eyes.

"Che," the male grunted before returning to his silence.

Sometimes on the quest to nowhere you meet people along the way. And often they leave you with an uncontrollable fascination. Are they too searching for this illusive place that lies just beyond dusk and before dawn? Or are they merely on their way from one place to another? He has never met anyone in his nightly journeys, believing himself to be lucky in this regard.

Though he convinces himself that rebirth is what he seeks every time he boards the train, he doesn't wish for renewal. He has never wanted anything of the sort. Truthfully he'd only ever wanted to escape.

The rumbling in the distance signified the coming train's proximity to the platform. The white haired boy briefly wondered whether he'd be able to find nowhere in the train tracks before him. Even as the rumbling got louder and the whistle sounded through the stillness, silver eyes continued to stare down at the iron tracks a couple feet below him.

Just a moment before the train pulled into the station, the navy haired stranger yanked the white haired boy from his position at the edge of the platform, a scowl on his features.

"Are you trying to get side swiped by the train? Or are you just fucking stupid?" the taller male snapped.

"My apologies, I wasn't thinking," the smaller boy said, head bowed in shame. 'Actually the problem was that I was thinking too much' he thought with a heavy sigh.

"Che, well that's obvious," navy hair swished as the male composed himself "baka Moyashi."

"My name is Allen, and I'm really not that short," the white haired boy pouted.

"So you're not completely brain dead," a smirk lit the gorgeous features of the older male. Allen said nothing, boarding the train with the other close at his side.

They took seats across from each other, silence once again cloaking them. Cobalt eyes studied the solemn younger boy who seemed to have neither reason nor direction. To simply subsist without a purpose was something he could never understand, though his were less than commendable.

His name was Kanda Yuu and he was definitely not running away in search of a place which by its name suggested didn't exist.

Nowhere: a remote or insignificant place that ceases to exist, by which there is no path to where it can be found. Seeking such a place was bound to be an inevitable disappointment no matter how long he searched.

The train came into a station bustling with people and both males disembarked. The two went their separate ways without a care as to where the other was headed or why they had met in such an abnormal manner. After all they'd never see each other again, or so they assumed.

It was day once again, and time for him to face reality. He will smile and laugh just like always. He will work and cry like always, banishing the unrealistic fantasy of escape. Yet he will continue to look for that nonexistent place as soon as the sun goes down. He'll return to the platform and board the same train he always does even with no hope of ever finding his desired destination.

Allen pasted on his award winning smile and headed down the street to the ominously towering Ark Offices. This is the place Allen was forced to return to every day, where his womanizing, drunk of a guardian had decided to dump him several years ago. Cross had said that Allen was to remain there undercover until he came to pick him, in the mean time the boy was to learn as much as possible and play along with whatever he was told to do.

It was a shady organization, blurring the lines of black and white to a dull monotonous grey. Up until this point Allen was unclear about the purpose of the organization, he knew that several of the more important members of the corporation were sadistic as hell and took pleasure in scaring the shit out of people. He knew that that people often went missing with no explanation and he knew that the atmosphere was heavy, depressing and utterly psychotic.

Allen took his orders without question, he learned that questions only earned suspicion and there were punishments for people who were seen as a threat but were still useful. So even as it was tearing him apart, Allen would smile and con people out of their futures.

Days would pass like this. He would find himself lost away to the maddening spiral of deceit and despair, yet he was unable to leave – even as he searched the nights for the place where he could disappear and feel freedom wrap around him he knew there was no such fate for those who had worked within these hollow walls.

Kanda's default emotion was anger found in a scowl. He'd returned to his not so pleasant work with the Black Order Offices. It was a sketchy place at best; people were always turning up asking for some sort of salvation. Such a thing didn't exist yet they searched for it, craving it with all of their soul. Kanda's job was to eradicate the soulless creatures that would entice people into selling their souls and their futures for petty things.

He didn't know much about the inner workings of the organization he worked for, except that there were strict rules against heretics, traitors and deserters. He followed his orders and carried out his missions with precision. The Order was particularly proud of him, as he never failed a mission. As such he had a longer leash than most, not that he had any use for this freedom.

The night before he'd gone to a temple a couple districts away with a lead on a person he was searching for. If nothing else the Order had extensive resources, of which he had no problem exploiting to his benefit. His work with the Black Order was just a means for passing time; he'd been brought into the field of work by his overly sentimental guardian. His true mission in life was to find a certain someone of whom he would divulge to no one.

There was another lead at the temple. He'd be going back after work.

The day begins to wane again and he is released form his shackles to do as he pleases within the sparse nighttime hours. He doesn't think as he walks past people on the street. He doesn't stop when a co-worker waves to him from the outdoor café he trudges past. As though unconscious the world warps around him, blurring his perception of the suffering creatures he sees. As his vision clears he finds himself upon a very familiar platform.

He hadn't thought he'd see the white haired boy again, yet there he stood, awaiting the train on the very empty platform, same as the night before, legs dangling over the tracks and eyes seeming to stare past everything.

"Oi Moyashi, you need me to yank you out of the way again?" Kanda asked in a lightly mocking tone. He didn't know why he felt the need to tease the boy. He usually kept to himself and got pissed off if people approached him. Silver eyes turned to meet his as the boy seemed to be thinking before recognition registered.

"I didn't need you to do it last night," Allen pouted, infantile face glowing lightly in the pale moonlight.

"Che," Kanda muttered as he took a seat on the bench to await the train.

No one had ever been on the platform at this hour before, then suddenly, two nights in a row someone was there. And if such coincidences aren't enough, it was the same person. Panic began to set into Allen as he pondered in the silence – had this man been sent by the Earl to monitor him? Was he under suspicion of treason? If such was the case then he might as well just die right there and not bother going back. Should Cross have discovered his stupidity, he was sure that he'd somehow be brought back to life only for the man to beat him into a bloody pulp for not completing the mission he'd been given.

The pale boy released a heavy sigh as he grew dizzy from his worried pondering and tipped back against the platform, head hitting the ground and silver eyes dilating as they stared up at the shadowed platform covering.

Cobalt eyes widened a fraction as he watched the boy flop backwards. He couldn't understand this kid at all. Not that he had any practice in reading people – that was Lavi's forté. The boy intrigued him, though he couldn't place the reason why. The boy was pretty, but Kanda had never been one to be won over by someone because of their appearance, though if that were the case the kid was enough to do that with a single glance. Abnormal snowy hair framed pale skin, in which was set two gem-like silver eyes. There was an unnatural marking of crimson through the boy's left eye that originated from a pentacle on his forehead and ended in a stroke upon his cheek.

Kanda walked over to the boy, towering over him with a brow cocked in question. Silver eyes just stared back unsure of what to do or say to the man who could very well be here to punish him for something he may or may not have done.

Allen thought about Mana while he cursed Cross, wondering why he had been placed in such a situation where running away was his only option and the chains were too thick to break free. He'd never beg, and he'd promised to always keep walking forward but such things meant little when one was dead.

"Why are you here?" Allen asked before he was able to restrain himself.

"Waiting for the train," Kanda replied as if it was the most obvious thing in the world. But it was, if you weren't thinking someone was coming to off you.

"Last night was the first time you've been here at this hour and now tonight too. Why?" Allen asked.

"I take it you're here often if you know I don't usually take this train," Kanda said wondering why the boy was asking such questions "I had business in this district."

"What kind of business?" Allen asked feeling knots tighten in his guts.

"I hardly see how that's any of your business," Kanda said.

"Am I in trouble?" Allen asked heart rate increasing with his apprehension.

"How the hell would I know?" Kanda asked suddenly extremely curious about the boy.

"Do you work for the Earl?" Allen asked. He'd debated on whether or not he should just ask the question that was burning in his mind. Cobalt eyes narrowed suspiciously as Allen sat up and turned to face Kanda, legs crossed beneath him.

"I don't," Kanda said, feeling fire burn within him at the very mention of the repulsive man. The navy haired male saw relief flicker through Allen's eyes and new questions were born in his mind.

"How do you know that man?" Kanda asked. It was clear Allen knew him, if the expression he'd made was any indication, but how exactly Kanda was unsure of – could the boy be one of the poor souls conned into an early loss of their futures, if so the look he'd seen would make sense. Without a future the boy would surely lack direction and purpose.

Allen was silent as he stared up at Kanda. If not the Earl then who did this intimidating male work for and what business could he possibly have this late out in this remote district?

"My guardian knows him," Allen said vaguely.

"That man is trouble, you shouldn't get involved with him," Kanda said, voice clipped and serious. He was unable to place the emotion brewing within him at the thought of the boy before him somehow being damaged by the Earl.

A bright smile lit Allen's face as he nodded. Behind his smile he was crying – it was much too late for such a warning.

The train from somewhere had come to return all prisoners to their cages. Another day would bloom bright deception. Path flourished by the darkness threatening to devour all who got to close. Two kindred souls had met in a place as close to nowhere as the he had ever gotten. His search had been fruitless in what he sought, yet perhaps what he had found instead was worth more.

The days would pass slowly, each following their orders and somehow yearning for another interaction with the other. A strange fixation had overcome them both, a new and unconventional detour from their regular paths.

Since that first night, they would meet on the platform and exchange light banter, often ending in an argument. They knew so little about each other, yet possibly more than anyone else did or ever would.

Nowhere is the state of which their goals had retreated to. It was just a night out in search of something, but what that something was had become unclear. It was possible that now, the something the both sought was the same – a mutual objective amidst the nighttime hours.

Such things were never meant to last though, which Allen was quickly reminded of when his work had put him in a difficult situation. A file lay open before him, cobalt eyes staring up from a square snapshot.

"This man is a problem for us and you are such a good employee we thought this would make the perfect opportunity for you to get a raise," the Earl said a humored grin upon his wicked face. "Provided you eliminate our problem you could be on par with the Noah's."

To complete his mission, he was to follow orders until Cross had come to get him. But Hurting Kanda was simply not an option. So he resolved to do as he must – Cross be damned. He would accept the task as always and would meet the male as always, he would tell him everything. He would be blowing the whole mission and he would be signing his own death warrant but for Allen it was the only option.

To take refuge in a place called nowhere would be ideal for him. He had sought it for far too long without luck. It was all a pitiful fate but his time had run out. Beyond the window of the train he watched the trees as they blurred into one. The winter of his life was finally upon him in full intensity. The spring a mere folly – as if he'd ever have made it there.

"Oi Moyashi, what's with that look?" Kanda asked as he stepped onto the platform, silver eyes capturing his with an unchecked grief.

"Can we go somewhere tonight?" Allen asked, voice soft and weary.

"What's with this all of a sudden?" Kanda asked as he approached the white haired boy. "The train will be here in a half an hour and the next one won't be for another hour after that."

"Please, just a quick walk," Allen said eyes glittering in the moonlight "how far is the temple?"

"You want to go to the temple?" Kanda asked to which Allen nodded. "It's not that far but if you really want to go we could go this weekend, you don't work on weekends right?"

"Please, can we go now?" Allen asked, close to begging.

"Alright," Kanda said as he began to walk, leading Allen away from the platform and down the dirt path towards the temple. "Why is this so important?" Kanda asked as they began to climb the mountain of stairs that lay before their destination.

"I'll tell you later ok," Allen said smiling sweetly at the older male. Kanda frowned, unsure of what was going on. Allen had never once wanted to leave the platform and never once had he seemed so placid yet antsy.

Silver eyes widened in awe at the beauty of the place that surrounded him. If God had ever listened to him he'd have begged for Kanda's safety even after he did what was his only means of protecting him. Mana had taught Allen to pray a long time ago, to pray for health happiness and safety. When Mana had died Allen had lost his will to pray to the God he felt didn't exist. He never thought that some guy he met on a train platform would revive such a need, yet there he was.

Kanda watched silently as Allen observed the temple grounds, following at a more subdued pace. There were ten minutes left before the train would arrive at the station. It wasn't of any consequence to him to take the next train. He'd arrive to work an hour later than normal, but still three hours earlier than he was scheduled to. It worried him though, that the boy had spontaneously had the desire to do something other than talk while they waited for the train.

"Kanda, it's beautiful!" Allen exclaimed as he stood before a pond on which floated dozens of lotus blossoms, softly illuminated by the dimming moonlight.

"Che," Kanda sighed, figuring he might as well let the boy have his fun, for whatever the reason. "Would you like to go for tea? There's a place that's open all night not too far from here and since we missed the train we have time."

The pale boy turned to him, an unreadable expression on his face, as his silver eyes sparkles with an oddly sincere glow. Allen nodded, white locks shifting with his movement as he followed the navy haired male away from the temple and down to an old looking shop, nestled in the brush just off the dirt path.

"Oh, customers how delightful," an old man greeted "what can I get for you two?"

"Tea and dango," Kanda replied as he led Allen over to a seat. A few minutes later the old man came over and set the order on the table with a smile before heading back over to the counter.

"What's this?" Allen asked picking up a skewer and looking at it curiously.

"It's dango, you like sweets right," Kanda said as he sipped his tea and watched with amusement as the white haired boy tentatively brought the desert to his lips, a pink tongue darting out at the sticky caramel substance coating the white balls. A surprised look over took his infantile features as he nibbled at one of the sweet dumplings.

"It's really yummy!" Allen exclaimed as he savored the sweet in his mouth, a soft mewl of delight reaching Kanda's ears. Kanda felt heat pool in his nether regions at the soft sound that Allen had emitted and a light pink tinted his cheeks at how utterly adorable the younger boy was.

After they had finished their tea, and Allen had finished his dango they began to walk the trail back to the platform.

"I had a lot of fun tonight Kanda, thank you," Allen said smiling sweetly, making Kanda wonder briefly if the boy tasted as sweet as he looked. Kanda stopped walking, his calloused hand wrapping around Allen's slender wrist, spinning the boy to face him. Cobalt stared into confused silver before he closed the distance between them, capturing Allen's lips with his own.

Startled, Allen fought down a blush that was trying to overtake his entire face before giving in to the warm and tingly sensation that Kanda had spurred within him. Kanda ran his tongue along Allen's bottom lip before pushing past into the warm orifice, tasting the sweetness that was unmistakably Allen.

After what seemed like an eternity the two broke apart, Allen softly panting for air. His heart ached as he thought about how this would be the last time he saw Kanda. It had been an amazing night and he didn't want it to end, he wanted to spend forever with this man.

"Kanda, I'm sorry but this was my last night out," Allen said feeling tears prick at his silver eyes.

"What do you mean?" Kanda asked, brows furrowing.

"I don't know when, but I think I fell in love with you," Allen said "and because of that I can't let them hurt you. But I doubt they'll let a transgression like this go unpunished."

"What the fuck are you talking about?" Kanda asked now seriously confused, feeling anger start to rage within him.

"My guardian is a member of the Black Order and several years ago he put me on a mission in the Ark Offices. I was to do as I was told and collect as much information as possible until he came to get me," Allen sighed as he took in the incredulous look on Kanda's face. "I've started to think Cross isn't coming back, but besides that I was ordered to kill you because you're a liability to the Earl." Allen handed over a set of folded up papers that he had taken from the file folder.

"There was absolutely no way I was going to do that so I did the only thing I could: I accepted the assignment and decided to warn you. You seem to know about the Earl, so you also know that he won't let something like this slide, whether I go back or not, so this was my last night out," Allen said feeling rather small under the older male's scrutinizing gaze. "I'm so glad I was able to spend it with you."

"Are you fucking serious?" Kanda flipped through the papers and saw his profile and the mission statement. He couldn't believe the boy before him was not only working for the Earl, but it was under the instruction of one of the Order's suspected renegade Generals, who had disappeared several years ago while on a mission.

"There's no fucking way you're going back there to die," Kanda snapped as he pocketed the papers "come with me to the Order." A smile lit Allen's features as he wrapped his arms around Kanda in an innocent embrace.

"Once that train pulls into the station, this dream is over and we both have to go back to reality," Allen said as if reprimanding a young child. "Don't cling to something that exists nowhere, it'll only cause you pain."

"You're fucking serious, you're going back there tomorrow like none of this happened," Kanda said in disbelief. "I can't let you die for me."

"I was dead the moment I left that building, perhaps even longer than that," Allen said as he clung tighter to Kanda feeling the male tighten his grip as well.

"Che, Baka Moyashi," Kanda muttered as he broke away from the embrace, hand gripping tightly to Allen's wrist. The strides were long and quick, making Allen stumbled as he tried to match the pace.

Kanda was done arguing, he wasn't letting Allen go. Not even if he never made it back to work again, he wasn't going to let go. Their night out would last forever if it had to, in order to keep the boy at his side. It was a foolish idea coming from the normally aloof male but he had lost much in life and wasn't prepared to lose anymore.

Back on the train, destination still uncertain, he clung desperately to the arms surrounding him protectively. He'd had a companion to share his life with if only for a few short months. There was a lotus blooming amidst his snowy wasteland.

It is only when you stop looking for nowhere that you find that such a place exists. It hides within a small stitch in time between here and there, a grain of sand trapped within eternity, forever suspended within that moment of existence.


A/N: So this was my final entry for Yullen week. I think I had the most fun with this one and I actually liked how it came out. All in all I think my first Yullen week was a success and I am looking forward to the next one.

My finals start on the 8th and my last one is on the 11th so I won't be working on anything until after my exams are over - I have to really hit the books if I want to make up for all the time I spent here *laughs nervously* but it was worth every second. After exams though I have a bunch of plot bunnies just dying to be written, including the continuation of Sometimes Things Work Out.

Anyway thanks to everyone who's read and reviewed my works.

Comments are welcomed – they make me happy :)