.Clouds And Sheets- A Vampire Knight Fanfiction by Clue-sama.

Disclaimer: I do not own anything legally affiliated with Matsuri Hino's Vampire Knight and am not making money with these fanworks.

Credits: Credit to Sagakure/Blackened Wing/IncaGold27 for the idea of Kaname having a rather traumatizing past/childhood. Also Blackened Wing for a few points in her great fic Break Me Down about how the Council used a younger Kaname.

Author's Notes: Well ^^ I was pleasantly surprised to get a few of people who offered to translate the song for me! :D Thank you to Eyes17k and Alyssa who were able to find the original lyrics and send me their translations! *hearts and hugs* :3 I've taken their lovely translations and posted them on my MySpace XD So if you want, go there and read them (by way of either clicking on my homepage in my bio and going to the blogs or going to MySpace and searching for Clue-sama and finding the me and my blogs that way). Haha there's some non-ff stuff up there that you might not care about since that's also where my friends find me and such, but it should be fine. Do whatever you want there. Also, if you like songs that could be applied to KxZ or ZxK, there are lyrics to some songs in the blog area as well... (Not an analysis though cos I didn't have time, but maybe one day I'll get back and post my thoughts on them)

NOW there was another person, Senpai-Lau, who wishes to help as well... Haha however, she doesn't have an account and needs the Italian lyrics X3 I'll put the lyrics up on my MySpace as soon as I can, so you may have to wait a little bit, Senpai-Lau... Perhaps you could try finding them by way of Google? Try and get an account soon, I'd love to talk to ya about the song and such! XD

Anyways... Let's start with the actual chappie XD I've been rather busy with what's (unfortunately) not yaoi or sexy vampire related. But rather... school -_- We're not even IN school yet and I has junk to do. Makes me angry T-T I'm all behind on reviews and such, too... Ah, but enough of my griping. I hope you enjoy this chappie, which, if only for a bit, will focus a little on how Zero feels about all of this. ^^ However, I actually am finding that I like writing from a confused, angsty pureblood's POV 8D;

Read, enjoy, review~! No Flames

-x-X-x-

Chapter Two

Only a few more hours until he knew the Night Class would start to wake up... The Headmaster was kind enough to give Zero permission to not attend his classes today so that he could be rested enough for the hunt later tonight with Kaname.

Kaname...

Zero shook his head with a quiet sigh as he did some work that was being passed out in class today so he wouldn't fall behind. He put his pencil down though at the thought of the pureblood. He had been crying when Zero came to get his signature... Although the prefect did a good job of hiding his curiosity and... concern... he wasn't really as hardened towards Kaname's apparent sadness as he'd let on. He'd never smelled tears from Kaname before... ever. He'd never seen anything less than control and arrogance, actually. Of course, since he'd been drinking from the pureblood, less perturbed by the feel of drinking blood from a warm neck than he'd though he'd be, Zero noticed a bit of a change in Kaname. It wasn't anything major, but when the hunter was fang-deep in the brunette's throat and sometimes was pressed against him, it was harder than not to notice body language and such.

Zero had first noticed it when he'd come for blood one night, tired of fighting himself and agonizing for days before finally submitting, also not opting to take from Yuuki. Kaname had been already standing and waiting for him, his fingers reaching for the top buttons on his shirt. Zero knew his eyes had flashed with bloodlust at the sight- elegant fingers exposing a soft, tasty neck for his consumption- and he'd come forward, stopping Kaname's hand with his own. The pureblood fixed him with a slightly confused and annoyed look, but Zero, feeling a little moody that night, had only tugged the collar down and prepped the area with his tongue, whispering against the moist flesh, "You can spare one ruined shirt, Kuran..."

The prefect hadn't been especially harsh with his feeding, but actually... he'd been kind of gentle that night. He'd walked Kaname back against a wall and used more of his lips and tongue rather than his fangs to work the blood from the pureblood's neck. And... (now Zero blushed a little) he'd attempted to soothe the older vampire by tenderly lacing his fingers with the soft brown locks of hair, sort of cradling Kaname's head while it was turned away to give Zero some room. The hunter didn't think much of it, but when he was finished, aware that he'd taken a little more blood than usually allowed, he caught a careful warmth in Kaname's eyes. Zero then felt a little awkward, asking if the pureblood was all right. Kaname nodded silently but from then on, Zero noticed that the pureblood was less tense and maybe even accepting of what the prefect's approach meant. Yet, it didn't feel like a reluctant acceptance... Even Zero gradually relaxed when feeding, and was more careful and considerate.

It was easier that way, but it wasn't exactly a friendly affair. Zero didn't exactly like how he himself felt around Kaname now. He didn't want to be nice and wonder if he was being too rough or taking too much. But he couldn't exactly bring himself to be outright mean because Kaname never did anything to deserve it. The pureblood no longer seemed to mock Zero and the hunter's relationship with Yuuki was just as brother-sister as it usually was; Kaname also treated her that way. There was no reason really for Zero to handle Kaname like the pureblood had no feelings anymore. He wondered if Kaname also felt that way since he didn't seem to mind Zero's change either.

But... just when Zero seemed to be able to hold Kaname at arms' length, as it were, he happened upon the pureblood crying. A pureblood. Crying. Well, Zero'd certainly never seen a pureblood's tears, especially from one like Kaname Kuran, but all he felt when he saw the reddened eyes was... worried alarm. At least until Kaname had returned his question with a sarcastic remark. What could make Kaname cry...? And then upon watching the pureblood the rest of the time in his rooms, Zero found that maybe he had interrupted something. Kaname was rather... listless and wouldn't even hold the younger vampire's gaze. Wouldn't even look at him when he intentionally made sure he was glaring at the pureblood to see some familiar expression from him.

The hope that Kaname would be in better spirits came tonight was honest. And it was just as much for the pureblood's well-being as it was for Zero's reluctance to feel the urge to comfort him.

--

Kaname made sure he had everything taken care of for today because he wasn't exactly sure when he would be coming back. Anyway, who knew what would happen between Zero and himself since Kaname would be basically alone with the hunter for a while... Maybe the pureblood would want to come back and fall face first into his pillows and sob and do little else for a while...

Kaname sighed while slipping on a light overcoat. It was a little cool out, but he didn't quite want to simply wear a long-sleeved shirt. Anyway... he wished his attraction to Zero wasn't so... energy sapping. He'd already developed his fake personality before Zero even began feeding- maybe even before Cross Academy- but with his 'mask' having to cover this odd affinity now, it was harder. It was easier when it just had to hide scars from his past, but Zero... Zero was the present and the feelings he brought weren't fear, worthlessness or disappointment. Granted, not all the emotions the hunter gave Kaname were good- such as shame- but it wasn't as if Zero meant to do it. Anyway, most of them were tentative senses of longing and the like.

Now... Kaname's past tormentors... they basically thrived on young Kaname's terror and helplessness. All the better for the Council if Kaname was made controllable by their threats to claim his unstability from his parents' death. He may have been basically alone back then, save his dear Yuuki who he'd saved and given to Headmaster Cross for care, but if he was locked away as a crazed pureblood, the Kuran family would be basically nothing. He wasn't being arrogant when he thought that without him, vampire society would be different than it was today. It'd taken quite a bit persuasion but Kaname finally got the issue of co-existance out to the vampire world and everything was running as smoothly as it was before his parents' passing. He wondered that when co-existance became a more widespread thing, would he be able to drop his act and be himself?

Most likely not since others may begin to simply say I was insane from the start... Kaname mentally figured. Anyway, if it weren't for his need to at least look stable, he wouldn't be so unstable... it was a vicious cycle, really. He felt like... Kaname Kuran wasn't even who he was anymore. Who would he be if not for his pure blood which commanded that he fit it rather than the blood fit him? Who would even want to know him if not for his perfect poise and cool- which, don't forget, was only because he had to be that way? Ah... this was why he didn't really like for his worries to be at the forefront of his thoughts. They tended to depress him even more.

Kaname sighed then, feeling and- if he listened carefully- hearing Zero's entrance to the Moon Dorms. And he wouldn't really want to put the hunter in a bad mood with his own downed spirits because it would only make things harder. He considered simply meeting Zero in front of his door, but decided against it since he didn't want to look excited. Maybe in some weird sense, he was, but he shouldn't be- Zero didn't even want him on the hunt.

A few moments later, Zero actually knocked instead of just walking in like he used to do and Kaname approached, making sure that his 'mask' gave him his usual calm, emotionless expression. Upon opening the door, he saw Zero casually checking the magazine in Bloody Rose, but not looking at the pureblood. Kaname didn't say anything either and came out, closing his door behind him. He felt his chest starting to feel a little weird already, but showed no sign of anything as he and Zero set off to leave the Moon Dorms.

Kaname thought that maybe the prefect was starting to loathe him once again since he'd found out the pureblood's shameful habit, but suddenly Zero murmured, "I see you're feeling better."

The pureblood cast a careful glance towards Zero, his head raised slightly in automatic false condescension even while his mind began racing. Zero was also looking at him, guarded interest reflecting in his amethyst eyes. Apparently, he... wanted to know what was wrong with Kaname yesterday. Of course, the pureblood could tell that the hunter would never ask aloud but maybe... maybe Zero was consciously, albeit silently, urging Kaname to confide in him...? Or maybe the brunette was only seeing what he wished.

As he turned back to face the main doors which he began to pull open, Kaname thought that he... he wouldn't mind telling Zero if only the pureblood knew the prefect would care and comfort him. But that was too much to ask for, especially the comfort part. Then again, Kaname was insightful enough to see that Zero was a caretaker by nature. The pureblood narrowed his eyes as his heart ached for a beat. Zero is kind to those he cares for...

However, while feeling the gentle breeze caress his cheek as if trying to apologize for how fate was treating him, Kaname softly replied, "I am. Thank you for noticing..." Never mind that Kaname knew he'd be feeling worse than yesterday if Zero kept being nice if it was only a formality and not because he truly cared.

--

Some arrangements had been discussed about transportation, but Zero insisted that a simple walk to town where they could catch a bus to the site would be fine. A chauffeur would only be attention grabbing and Zero would rather keep it not only low-key, but if there was one thing about transportation the young hunter had learned from the hunts he had under his belt, it was that sometimes there were either innocent casualties or simply angry drivers that had been kept waiting too long. Once Kaname found out, he didn't seem to be too put off that he'd have to walk and then ride a public bus, but Zero inwardly smirked at how he was dragging the pureblood from his comfortable little throne.

For Kaname himself though, the walk to town wasn't too bad. The weather was nice, at the moment, and... he was with Zero. And oddly enough, after the first few minutes in which he figured that, yes- they were walking the whole way, Kaname actually began to relax and feel content. He very briefly considered suggesting that they run since he could smell rain on the soft breezes that blew through, but... he stole a glance towards Zero and the hunter looked just as calm as the pureblood. Kaname's heart warmed at the thought that Zero could ever be off-guard around him and, even though the brunette figured that maybe the younger vampire wasn't utterly relaxed, the pureblood decided not to say anything after all.

For a moment, Kaname smirked bitterly to himself since he'd do almost anything to be alongside Zero for a moment or two longer than normal. The docile air about them was merely a bonus.

They finally reached town and waited around under the bus stop overhang. They hadn't spoken the whole way but now Zero broke the silence by softly saying, "You smell the rain, don't you?"

Kaname nodded, but noticing that the hunter wasn't looking at him, murmured, "Yes."

The sky was already too dark to see the clouds, but the lack of stars visible was sign enough that it would be raining soon. Kaname didn't expect Zero to continue speaking, but the hunter said, "I thought I told you not to be so moody when you came out here." The words made the pureblood tense slightly, but his expression was unchanging while he returned evenly, "Controlling yourself on the inside is much harder than controlling yourself on the outside, Kiryuu-kun."

This made Zero look up at Kaname (the younger vampire sitting on the bench while the older stood beside it) and this time the pureblood was the one to stare steadily in front of him. Zero's words hadn't been offensive or confrontational at all and even now, his expression wasn't one of negativity. If anything the younger vampire looked like he was just realizing something. Actually, since Zero had already figured something was wrong with Kaname, it was more like the brunette had just admitted to it.

Why...? Kaname, what happened to you...? Zero thought momentarily, suddenly aware of the hollow feel radiating from the pureblood beside him. Certainly, Kaname was perfect and couldn't have some sort of emotional turmoil issues? Hah... Well, that didn't sound right. Never mind all the sarcastic things the ex-human said and thought of purebloods, no one was perfect, not even vampires in their purest form. Still though, what could hurt Kaname so much to make him cry and emit such a feeling of loneliness...? It was incredible, in a way.

Zero stared at Kaname for a few more seconds, his own expression only a bit guarded- Kaname was no threat in this state which was good for him, but bad for the pureblood. Both because he was being vulnerable to further emotional harm and because if he was distracted on the hunt, something could go wrong. You expect the worse on these missions... Then again, maybe it wasn't as good for Zero as he'd like to think. Sure, he wouldn't have to be on edge, but now he kept feeling like he had to protect Kaname from anything... everything. The silver-haired vampire shook his head to scatter the thoughts- he could hear the bus coming and they couldn't risk both of them being all distracted.

...Even so, when they both boarded the bus, Zero immediately noticed Kaname's body tense even more as the eyes of the other riders locked onto them. The two vampires sure were... exotic looking and while Zero could easily glare until the strangers looked away, Kaname seemed to have some kind of deer-in-headlights thing going on. The pureblood was standing there, completely out of his element with both curious and maybe even lecherous stares aimed at him...

"Hey... come on," Zero mumbled, gently nudging Kaname with his elbow to snap him out of his nearly fight-or-flight mode. Wow, Kaname was really messed up tonight... Where'd that control go..?

At his words and slight jab, Kaname lowered his eyes and nodded, almost feeling ill. What was wrong with him? He'd always been stared at- he was a pureblood. So long as he didn't look back at them, vampires would ogle him adoringly, but here he was: stiffening at several humans' gazes. Still, he only waited until Zero led the way down the isle to an empty seat. However, it was a spot that could have people behind the two vampires and the hunter seemed to notice that Kaname would possibly be paranoid with strangers behind him.

With a sigh, Zero continued to the very back where, luckily, there was another empty seat. The younger vampire plopped down onto the rather uncomfortable seat... and heaved another sigh as Kaname just stood in front of him, staring at the seat like he could see the germs writhing about on them.

"Would you sit down, Kuran?" Zero grumbled, resisting the urge to tug the brunette down. God, it was like pulling teeth...

Kaname glared for a moment, which was a rather welcome display of something closer to normal Kaname-behavior, before turning to sit on Zero's right, beside the window.

Only after the pureblood sat for a few moments, reluctantly leaning back on the backrest just because his muscles were starting to hurt from being so rigid, did both vampires notice that they had both positioned themselves so that anyone trying to look at Kaname would be met with a scowl-ready Zero instead.

It seemed that Zero had unintentionally ended up protecting Kaname from something after all. Worse, the hunter nor the brunette minded as long as it wasn't pointed out.

--

It wasn't too long of a ride to the basically secluded downtown area and most of the other riders had gotten off in clusters, and Zero did notice how Kaname did relax a bit as more and more of the humans left. Neither vampire seemed inclined to actually start a conversation, but Zero did sort of... want to talk to Kaname. Now that the pureblood was a tad less freaked out-looking, the hunter did see the way the other's guard was just hanging over his countenance. Not quite reinforced by purpose, not quite fallen and leaving him completely vulnerable. Kaname would talk if he was spoken to...

"Our stop is next," Zero ventured, intentionally making his tone gentle with just a hint of "I know you need to talk, so I'll listen..." mixed in. Just think- not too long ago, Zero would have preferred to ride on the top of the bus than sit so close to the pureblood, and here he was: trying to get the brunette to confide in him.

Kaname slowly turned away from the window he'd been looking out of and gave Zero a wary look, able to see right through the actual words to the purpose beneath them. The caution was to be expected. Hell, even Zero himself barely knew what he was doing. He just... wanted to help Kaname and the thought of the pureblood, in anguish, all alone up in his rooms (because God knew the fool would fare it alone) was enough to make Zero feel an ache in his chest.

Careful auburn eyes searched honest, if not also slightly hesitant, lavender ones before Kaname replied, "...This Level E we are hunting... Judging by its location, it seems as if it has recently fallen."

The building was yet another boarded up, moldy condemned apartment that 'Es like to stick to in what people called "the bad part of town." But while Zero nodded to agree, he caught the faint tone of hopefulness as the pureblood spoke. The nod was just as much as a confirmation that Kaname could... trust Zero. Trust Zero with what, neither of them knew, but it didn't seem to matter.

"Yeah," Zero continued, standing as they neared the target location. "It probably just hunts the homeless that are around here for now, but soon its hunger will drive it farther into town. That's why we've got to kill it now."

They both got off the bus and stood before the chained up double doors. The lock meant nothing since plenty of the windows were shattered, their protective plywood splintered; if anything that was a sign that they were at the right place. Then another clue... Zero let out a faint groan, looking away from the building for a moment, and Kaname winkled his nose- the scent of human blood hung over the building quite strongly and they could tell that some of it was rather fresh.

The smell didn't put Kaname off too much since he was a born pureblood and all, but he did feel his fangs throb a bit... He obviously hadn't fed on real blood in a while. He glanced at Zero and saw the ex-human glaring up at the building, but the pureblood could see a very faint trembling passing through the younger vampire's frame. Although Zero was showing no extreme signs of hunger, his eyes still perfectly lilac, Kaname murmured, "Are you all right, Kiryuu-kun?"

"I'm fine," Zero immediately whispered. Kaname wasn't stupid- he was well aware of how much the hunter hated feeling his vampiric urges... how much he hated vampires. Especially purebloods.

Kaname didn't have too long to get depressed before Zero strode forward, heading up the stairs of the apartment building. He looked back down at Kaname, who was beginning to ascend the steps as well and spoke again.

"Anyway, this shouldn't take too long and I shouldn't need your help," he began, the words stinging Kaname more than he would've liked to admit. However, before the pureblood could offer a sharp remark to hide his slight pain at hearing Zero talk like that, the prefect continued, "However, if I do need your assistance, try not to get in my line of fire. You aren't the enemy and I don't want to shoot you..."

Red wine-colored eyes widened a bit and Kaname's heart latched onto those words of concern, no matter how routine they may be for a hunter and his partner. While Zero checked Bloody Rose, making sure it was ready to go, Kaname closed his eyes now, thinking... Zero didn't want to hurt him and would possibly be worried if he shot the pureblood on accident. In the past, the hunter had no hesitation about pointing the gun at Kaname, threatening him left and right. But lately, that had also dropped but neither of them spoke about it. At least, until this moment. The idea that Zero didn't want to shoot Kaname... and hearing it straight from the hunter's mouth after all the years of hearing nothing but Zero wanting to kill the pureblood... It was enough to boost Kaname's morale and he knew that his sorrow would evaporate from the warmth in his heart for at least this hunt.

The meaning that came with Zero's last statement wasn't lost on said vampire. Zero knew what he'd said and how it transcended its context. He'd hated Kaname; he'd honestly wanted to blow his pretty little head off in the beginning. But that was in the past and he didn't think he could even bring himself to lift the gun anywhere near the pureblood's body anymore. Whatever was hurting Kaname- to the point of tears and zoning out- was probably enough without some ex-human threatening to kill him every two seconds. Coupled with the fact that Zero didn't want to destroy him any longer anyway, the hunter wanted the brunette to know that he was... with him rather than against him.

Although, the silence from Kaname at Zero's advice was a little disheartening and the prefect went to glance up, half-expecting to see an offended pureblood, but saw something he'd been wishing to see since he saw Kaname crying.

A light, but very real smile was gracing Kaname's face; it even seemed to make his eyes glow warmly in the nearly pitch black night. Even so, Zero thought he could see a faint hint of something painfully wistful. Like when you want something but know it is far from your reach. Zero wanted to see it just a little longer, but Kaname turned away then, towards the chained up door, and the hunter scowled at himself... Did the pureblood notice he was staring?

If Kaname had, he showed no signs of caring for all he did was take the half-rusted steel chain in both of his hands.

"Allow me..."

With a quick jerk, the metal ripped apart like it was paper.

--

Author's Notes: I'll probably re-mention this in the next chappie's A/Ns but it occurred to me to mention it now in case I forget XD I don't think I want Zero to be utterly a slave to his hunger in this one. Yet, I don't want the blood tablets to work on him... So I think we'll just say Kaname's blood is working to effectively stablize him. *nod nod*

Haha this is random but I can't stop thinking about it at the moment. 8D Have you read S.A.C.R.I.F.I.C.E.by freya kurenai? Well if you haven't you need to! I just got through with the S chapter and OMG I'm feeling so awesomely dramatic... I love the fics set up like that one... In fact I have one sort of like it sitting in my folder waiting to be worked on. X3 Anyway, seriously, if you haven't read it, go now and enjoy it.*hearts* Well... after you review this of course XDD