miikka-xx: the code:breaker category needs love, man. i wrote this in half an hour or so, so it'll be badly-written, pointless fluff with the necessary dose of death and ogami-angst.

Title: Square One
Rating: K+
Summary: Every night, before drifting to sleep, Ogami thinks of how he will die. SakuraOgami.
Disclaimer: If I, by some miracle, did own this, Yukihina wouldn't wear any clothes.
Warning(s): if you have an imagination, a bit of blood. if not, you're good. implied spoilers but nothing really. um, heike's power? you shouldn't be that behind.

square one

Every night, before drifting to sleep, Ogami thinks of how he will die.

Perhaps he will die in some alleyway, his ability used up and his body broken and bleeding. Or on TV, where he will appear with his flame to torch the rotten whelp followed by cameras. Maybe he will die gracefully, old and wrinkled and wise, passing away in slumber. More often than not, he thinks he will die like a scoundrel, his use for Eden over, perhaps becoming an ex:Code, and maybe Toki will be dispatched to kill him. He didn't think Toki had the guts though. Perhaps Heike. Mostly like Heike. He would die with light blinding his eyes.

Ogami doesn't think that's a bad way to leave. Perhaps that's what people saw when they talked of 'the Light' in their near-death experiences. Perhaps they saw Heike giving them one last grace before leaving them to Death. Ogami snorted and turned to his side. As if.

Enter Sakurakouji Sakura. A pretty girl with a working knowledge of the martial arts.

Ogami doesn't think of her much at first, merely brushes her off as a mere nuisance. But she's like fungi or mold, albeit much more beautiful. She simply attaches herself and grows on him. He develops some sort of reluctant respect for her downright idiocy that she calls courage.

Her promise still rings in his ears for days on end. Killing was his job, she couldn't stop him from accomplishing that. Yet she was a persistent brat. Ogami developed an attachment to the persistent brat, his own little secret Rare Kind. And then, suddenly, she becomes important to the world. And he hates that. He hates Hitomi for giving her the key. He hates that everyone knows her. He hates that he thinks she's more than a Rare Kind.

He hates that she is no longer his.

At night, after he's slipped under the covers of his futon, he thinks of another way to die.

He thinks that should he die, he would like to die saving someone. He would like to feel his body propel itself before this person and be ripped to shreds only so that they may live on. Because a life, she tells him, is something precious. Ogami severely doubts his life is precious but he can see her face if he hurts himself. Perhaps he would see tears as he drifted past her to the afterlife.

He would like to die saving Sakura.

The first time she calls him, it's two in the morning.

He fumbles in the dark and flips the thing open, muttering a curt 'hello' in the receiver. He's pissed but that doesn't mean he should be rude. Being polite usually made life easier.

"Ogami?" Her voice makes him snap to attention, despite his drowsiness.

"Sakurakouji-san?" he asks, almost urgently because she's always in danger and he really doesn't want her to die because he wants to protect because she's important because she's -

"Ah, I called you to ask you a question," she tells him.

He almost breaks the phone in half.

"A question?" he deadpans.

"Before..." she hesitates and something about it makes his anger evaporate, "before you came here... to me... where were you before?"

Ogami blinks, "Izumo."

"Oh, thanks for answering," she replies hurriedly, "seeyouatschooltomorrow!"

She hangs up quickly, leaving him on the other line to replay the conversation in his head over and over again to find out it's meaning.

She doesn't show up at school the next day and the class hounds him immediately. Where is she? Is she sick? Did something happen? Ogami wants to escape. He's asking himself the same questions. He can almost imagine the police marching in here, telling them that Sakura's body was found sliced into bits and he would tell them she was alive last night, talking to him on the phone. He can see it, with that man standing over top of her, his white clothes specked with blood and -

Ogami stops breathing. He can't think. Won't think. He'll leave at break, tell Kanda the situation. Yes, he'll go to her house, ask her parents.

He leaps from his desk when the bell rings and slams a hurriedly scribbled note for Kanda on the teacher's desk.

He's halfway to her house, sprinting on the hard concrete as fast as he can, when his phone rings. He flips it open irritably and snaps a curt greeting.

"O-Oh yeah, you're in class, sorry Ogami!" she apologises from the other line, making him stop dead in the middle of the street.


"Hm?" She doesn't seem to mind him using her name so flippantly like that.

"Where are you?"

"Izumo," she replies simply, "I wanted to see where Ogami came from. Which one is your school?"

Ogami wants to laugh, wants to cry, wants to hit something... and in the back of his mind, wants to hear her voice forever.

"Eden deletes any records of Code:Breakers once they leave a place," he tells her. Sakura pauses.

"Oh," she sounds disappointed, "...do the students remember?" Ogami shrugs, he doesn't really care if they do or do not.

"Probably," he answers, "but I've never really met one after I leave, so I wouldn't know."

There's silence for a few moments, and she cuts it with a soft voice:

"It hurts, doesn't it?"

The question hangs in the air.

"What does?" he asks.

She is not one to mince words, "your existence."

Ogami flinches.

"Sakura, will you remember me?"

On the other line, some place in the mountains of Izumo, Sakura smiles.

"Of course."

She comes back the next day, telling her friends she went on a short road trip with her parents to Izumo and the hot springs there were amazing. Ogami wouldn't really know, but he's glad she's back. Her smile is constantly there, her black hair swinging easily, catching the sun and blinding him.

That night, he thinks he would like to die saving Sakura and have 'the Light' of his death be the entrancing glint of her dark locks.

The third time she calls him, it's two in the morning again.

"Ogami," she greets brightly, fully awake despite the ungodly hours of the night.

"Sakura," he says back, not quite as enthusiastic.

"I wanted to ask you a question." Ogami clutches his phone tighter, pressing his ear to the speaker.

"When you leave here... when you leave me, where will you go?"

Ogami closes his eyes tightly.

"Wherever you go," he confesses quietly.

She laughs, "you're very kind, Ogami. Well, I guess it's true that you'll have to be with me forever!"

Ogami raises his eyebrows, "is it?"

"After all," she tells him, "I did promise to never let you kill again!"

"That you did," Ogami says with an exasperated sigh, losing himself in the laugh on the other line.

"Ne, Ogami, can I tell you a secret?" she whispers through the line.


"I think," she begins, "I think I would like to go wherever you go too."

Ogami almost drops his phone in surprise, then screws up his courage to answer back.

"Sakura, would you..." he swallows, "would you like to eat lunch with me sometime?"

The silence is unbearable and he hears a shift of something.

"I would like that," she says quietly.

"Bye," he says, ear still pressed against the speaker.

"Bye," she replies and they both stay on the line until finally, she hangs up.

That night, he thinks of how he will live.

a/n: written on a whim. probably dreadfully OOC but give me a break. I only have 50 some chapters to work with! There hasn't been any remarkable character development for me to screw around with! Except, maybe, Toki and the whole sister thing. I love this pairing and this manga. Drop a line to tell me what you thought. :D