Disclaimer: This is the only disclaimer I'm going to put up for this collection of drabbles and it'll include all of my drabbles. -Ahem- I do not own Gakuen Alice.

Title: Believe
Prompt: #15 - circulatory system
Pairing: Natsume x Mikan
Genre: Romance/Family/Hurt



"No. You're staying."

He turns away from her furious expression and pushes the curtain away. He looks out the window, watching as the clouds slowly drape over the moon, inch by inch, until there is but a vague half moon impression against its white, silk cloak. The sun set hours ago but the clock hasn't reached the eleventh hour. It isn't time yet.

But the sky is dark.

"You just don't get it! I don't care how selfish you think I am, Natsume but mark my words, if you go out on that mission, I swear I'm going with you!"

"No," he repeats firmly, slowly turning to look at her. "You're not. You can't."

She looks ethereal in a loose yellow sun dress with a tiny red sash tied in a bow around her small waist. He's always liked seeing her wear red. His favorite color… she always looked immaculate with the dark shade against her pale skin. Her wavy brown hair is pulled away from her face, tied neatly to the side, spilling down one shoulder with a frame of loose strands framing her face.

"You shouldn't be up this late," he lets go of the curtain. "It's after hours. The Academy might be watching."

"I don't care! I bet that's what you want, huh? To leave while I'm asleep and oblivious to the fact that you're risking your life again—" she chokes on her next words and Natsume's rising anger quickly subsides.

But he doesn't move closer to her.

"We only have two months left until graduation, Natsume," she murmurs quietly, looking down at her feet. "What could Persona actually do to you now that we're this close?"

He frowns. "You know what Persona's capable of. He won't let me go so easily." Her eyes flash up angrily to meet his. Natsume takes a step forward but stops when she turns her head away resolutely. "It's just another mission. I'll be fine. I always am."

"Fine?!" she exclaims, stomping her foot for emphasis. "How can you even say that? You have no idea what it feels like waiting for you, afraid to hear that you've died and that you're never going to come back! Do you know how devastating that'd be for me?!" Her shoulders shake almost imperceptibly but Natsume catches it easily and his taut muscles slowly loosen.

He walks toward her and cups her cheek, gently tracing her jaw with the pad of his thumb. "You're assuming I'm going to die that easily, Stupid Girl." Her eyes glitter dangerously as she looks up into his face. Something tugs at the strings in his chest before he pulls her small frame into his and wraps her in a soft embrace. There's something large and full in his throat blocking the blood flow in his chest. He's sure of it.

Her shoulders are shaking again. She presses her face against his chest like she wants to meld herself into his body and Natsume rests his chin on the top of her head. "Crying isn't good for her, you know," he strokes her back.

"Not having a father isn't good for her either," her voice is muffled in his shirt.

His anger peaks. "I'm not going to die, Polka Dots. Get that ridiculous thought out of your head."

She pulls back with tears streaking down her cheeks and something inside him staggers at the look on her face. "You really don't get it, Natsume," she replies in a soft voice. "I can't help but worry." She looks up, brown eyes dark, before she traces the seam of his lips with a finger. "When I get out of here and I'm older… when my daughter asks me who my first love was, I don't want to have to pull out a picture of you to show her." Her voice wavers and fresh tears are sliding down her face. She looks down. "… I want to be able to point at you and say he's right there."

She chokes on a bitter laugh but he's too busy forcing down the organ in his throat. Something painful in his chest is throbbing.

He brings her face up before pressing a long, urgent kiss to her lips.

Pulling away, Natsume presses her against his chest for another warm hug so that she doesn't see the look on his face. He loves her. He really does. "I'm always going to come home to you. I promise you that." He tips her chin up when he knows the earlier expression is gone from his face. "You know I don't make promises unless I know I can keep them."

"I know," she replies in a quiet voice.

He's about to say something else when his watch sounds. A low curse is wrenched from his throat. There is an anxious expression on her face when he looks at her so he bends to smooth another soft kiss against her lips.

He traces her cheek before putting a foot on the windowsill, "Wait for me."

She puts a hand on her still flat stomach. "We will."

He looks back once more.

And then, he jumps.

Writer's Note:

There won't only be NatsumeMikan stories. There are some SumireKoko, etc too.

My Hopeless Romantic