Disclaimer: I do not own Vampire Knight.

A/N: This takes place while Yuuki is living in the mansion with Kaname, but it is as if the following events take place instead of Yuuki taking Artemis to all the pureblood's homes. In fact she does not have Artemis back yet, which is something that will come up later.

A faint sigh of longing escaped from her lips and she quickly gulped as if to draw it back in. Her eyes lingered over his collarbone and the smooth pale skin of his neck. She felt a fire slowly burning in the center of her body, growing with intensity with each passing moment that she remained in his presence. She turned abruptly and hurried from the room, knowing that her resolve could dissipate before her if she allowed herself to succumb to her thir-- Wait, no. This feeling she had wasn't quite a thirst, it was more like a hunger. She wanted more than his blood. She wanted his body. The feel of his warm skin beneath her hands...

"Yuuki, wait," he called after her, but she only walked faster. She had to get far away from him or she might be lured right back into his arms. And she didn't think she had the strength to pull away from him again.


6 months earlier

Yuuki sat at her desk in the windowless basement of her family home, staring blankly at the assignment before her. This wasn't the first time boredom overtook her since she moved into this mansion, and consequently into Kaname's protective shadow. Despite the fact that she had now been introduced into vampire society, she didn't feel like she had any more freedom. In fact, she felt more restrained by the feeling that she may never be able to trust another vampire. How would she know they were being sincere, rather than trying to take advantage of her? It was thoughts like these that made her feel even more powerless than she already was. Partly out of being sick of boredom and partly out of her determination to take charge of her own life and feel in control, Yuuki decided to get out of the house and go somewhere, anywhere as long as the choice was hers. She stood up from her desk leaving her unfinished work behind and strode out of the room and headed for her coat and her purse.

As she was leaving her bedroom all ready to go out, Aido took her by surprise in the hallway. "Yuuki-sama, what is this? You barely did half of this assignment!" he fumed as he held the paper up to her face.

"I'm going out, Aido-senpai. I'll be back in a few hours," Yuuki calmly replied.

Aido was indignant. "Wha--!" He could barely get out a word before Yuuki was striding past him down the hallway. "You can't leave now! Kaname-sama will be back from his meeting any moment now! What am I supposed to tell him?!"

Yuuki hesitated. She really couldn't help but want to see her brother. "Alright," she sighed, "I won't go now." She took off her purse and started back toward her room leaving Aido, who was visibly relieved, in the hallway. She walked into her room and shrugged off her coat before flopping onto her bed. Once again her thoughts drifted to how powerless she felt. She felt this stirring inside of her that urged her to find some way to be useful or productive. She still had no concept of her powers or what she was even capable of. She didn't even really know what was going on with the vampire society since the council's destruction. Something had to be going on because Kaname always seemed to be at a meeting. She wished she was allowed to go to these meetings as well. But why wasn't she? As the Kuran princess and Kaname's fiancé didn't she have a right to be at these meetings?

"Yuuki..."

She sat up on her bed at the sound of that deep, familiar voice saying her name like a caress. And the moment she laid eyes on him, something clicked inside her head, like she had been in a constant state of indecision, but now her mind was made up. "Kaname," she said with a sense of cautious confidence. She wasn't used to stating just his name, but she felt it would be better for what she was about to attempt.

She could detect the slightest hint of surprise behind Kaname's cool expression as he walked toward her. She got up off the bed and met him halfway, embracing him before tilting her head up to give him a quick kiss. She could feel the blush coming to her cheeks which only made her more embarrassed. He was hesitant to let her go, no doubt, elated by the way she said his name, but she didn't want to get distracted so she asked, "How was the meeting," as she slowly pulled away from his arms.

He looked at her lovingly for a moment before responding. "I don't remember, all I thought about was you," he said while stroking her hair.

She didn't know why, but she felt irritated by this. Did he think that's what she wanted to hear? She loved him and it filled her heart to the brim knowing that he loved her too, but it seemed he always thought of her as someone who could only stand to hear pleasant and adoring words. Like her world should only contain love and happiness and he was determined to paint it for her. The truth was the world was a dark and scary place, a place that she wanted to have some part in bettering. His love is what made the world seem brighter, but it couldn't be bright if he wouldn't allow her to see the dark. He always covered her eyes and whispered sweet nothings into her ear.

With these thoughts swirling through her head, she had no choice but to press on. "Kaname," she said again watching his eyes linger on her lips as the sound of his name broke the silence, "could I go to these meetings with you?"

He looked her in the eyes now and she could see that he was caught off guard by her question. It wasn't until she was re-awakened as a vampire that she could detect the subtlest of changes in his expression, but now she could see the thoughts in his eyes as he was trying to imagine why she would want that, trying to analyze how best to respond. After some deliberation he spoke. "I don't think that is a very good idea just yet."

So, he had played the safety card. She thought he would settle on that one. He would've insulted her if he said such meetings would bore her, or that she didn't understand the fragility of the situation and the impact her presence might have upon it.

"But if I'm with you I will be safe, so that's not an issue," she said confidently to show him that she completely trusted him. He let out a sigh and she could see him considering how best to state his next reason. She still held the smallest hope that he might give in and let her have her way, as was his custom, but she grew more frustrated and disappointed with each passing second that she studied his face. In fact she could now see that she had misunderstood. He was not talking about her safety, there was some other reason why he felt he couldn't allow her to go and it appeared he was trying to formulate how to say it.

"Yuuki," he started, "I don't want you to have to be a part of this. I want to do everything I can to make this a world where you are able to feel safe, but I don't want you to have to suffer through the process of getting to that point. I think it is best if you take this time to finish your schooling and become reaquainted with your instincts, while I try and make things the way they should be. You deserve to be happy and I'm doing everything in my power to create the world you deserve. But until all of these issues are resolved, I think you should stay here and learn all you can. It won't be that much longer, I promise." He caressed her cheek with one hand and gazed into her eyes, gauging whether or not she had understood.

It was just as she had thought before. Her brother didn't think she could handle the problems that plagued vampire society. He didn't think she could rationally think about a monarchy or the alliance with the hunters. He thought her brain only had the capacity for rainbows and kittens. He, like Aido, thought of her as a toddler and didn't think she was capable of understanding any complex situations, much less understanding her own nature. She was at once hurt and infuriated.

She concealed her anger as best she could and decided she would challenge him further, but she needed to stay calm to do so. Maybe there was still a chance she could make him see reason. She reached up and gently placed her hand over the hand he had pressed against her cheek. She lowered both their hands and held them between their two bodies. She looked down at their interlaced fingers as she spoke. "But as your fiancé," she said looking up into his eyes, "don't you think I should be at these meetings? We are supposed to make decisions together, are we not? I thought that was how marriage worked." She studied him again trying to see his reaction to her words. She had never brought up their engagement or marriage, partly because she thought it was understood and partly because she feared talking about it would place expectations on the level of intimacy in their relationship. But now, she had no reservations, because this is what she wanted. She wanted to be mature on all levels. She wanted to be his equal.

Once again she could see he was surprised by this. She was surprising him a lot. He searched for the words to say while pulling their clasped hands up to his mouth where he placed a gentle kiss on the back of her hand. He lingered there a moment with his eyes closed before holding her hand to his chest and responding, "My sweet Yuuki, there is no rush. You still have a lot to learn." He looked at her as one would look at a puppy chasing its tail.

She stared at him in disbelief. This was his response? He wasn't going to rush her into marriage, so there was no reason for her to try and be his equal? According to his words, she had a long way to go. Why didn't he just say "you are too stupid to accompany me and you are too stupid to marry me," that would've gotten the same point across. She slowly pulled her hand away from him and recoiled as if he had stung her.

She couldn't speak, she couldn't even look at him. She stared down at the floor, not really looking at it, but trying to find something in her mind. He continued to look at her with the same expression of adoring he had when he spoke before. He didn't understand how his words had hurt her. She bit her lip and finally looked up at him. "I-I'm not really feeling well, onii-sama. I think I'm going to lie down. Would you excuse me?"

His expression turned to one of concern. It did not go unnoticed when she reverted to calling him "onii-sama." He knew then that he had upset her, but the extent to which he had hurt her was unknown to him. He thought maybe it would be best to give her some space. So he reached out once more to her and tucked a strand of hair behind her ear before kissing her forehead and leaving the room, quietly closing the door behind him.

Yuuki stumbled to her bed and climbed in under the covers. She was so upset. If it was possible, she felt more helpless than she had before Kaname had come home. She curled up in a ball and tried to think about what she was going to do, but she fell asleep.

When she woke up some hours later it was early evening. She didn't feel any better about her situation than she did when she went to sleep, in fact she now felt worse. What was she supposed to do today? Stay here in the mansion and listen to Aido lecture her? She felt like she was going nowhere and allowing herself to be babysat was only perpetuating the feeling that she would never be anything more than a helpless child in Kaname's eyes. But what was she going to do?

As she was pondering this she heard a knock at her door. She climbed out of bed and walked over. When she opened it, she saw Aido standing outside. "Yuuki-sama, I've let you sleep in because Kaname-sama instructed me to, but it is time to start your lessons now," he said matter of factly.

"Where is onii-sama?" Yuuki asked expectantly.

"He left for a meeting, he will be gone for several hours," Aido responded, growing impatient.

"Oh," was all Yuuki could manage to say. Then she closed the door in Aido's face. "Yuuki-sama!! You better be ready in fifteen minutes to start your lessons!!" Aido yelled through the door.

Yuuki looked herself over in the mirror. She was wearing yesterday's outfit that was now crumpled and wrinkled. Her hair was a tangle of strands around her head. She walked toward her closet to change clothes. Upon entering, she ran her hands along the beautiful garments Kaname had purchased for her. The fine fabrics under her hands and the rows of high heeled shoes lining the floor of her closet suddenly ignited an uncontrollable rage inside her, where moments before she thought she didn't have the energy to feel anything. She burst into tears and lunged for the heels neatly placed side by side. Using both her arms she tore through the rows, throwing shoes in every direction. She picked up two of the shoes and ran back out into her room throwing them full force at the wall beside her bed. The first shoe hit the wall and then fell to the floor with a quiet clack. The second shoe she hurled slammed into the wall, the heel stabbing through the wall and sticking there. She fell to her knees with the sudden realization of what she must do.

She had to leave Kaname.

Her heart lurched inside her as if it had no idea where her thoughts were leading. And when her heart realized what leaving him would mean, a jolt of pain racked her whole body. Her pain so strong that it materialized before her in the form of a loud crack, as the wall where she had thrown the shoes split around the delicate pink pump. She loved him deeply, but she had to make her own way. Besides, if she could figure things out herself, maybe Kaname would come to see her as an equal rather than a struggling little girl that he must protect.

She slowly, mechanically, stood up and walked back to her closet. She dug through some folded clothes on one of the shelves until she found an old comfy pair of jeans and a favorite t-shirt. She brushed through her hair with her fingers and pulled the long flowing strands into a loose ponytail. She shuffled through the wreckage of shoes until she found her only pair of dusty sneakers and slipped them on. She didn't want any of these frilly clothes. In fact she couldn't think of anything she wanted to take with her.

Once she was dressed, she grabbed her coat and her little shoulder bag, and headed out of her bedroom. She snuck quietly down the long hall hoping she wouldn't run into Aido. She made it to her desk undetected and pulled out a sheet of paper and a pen. She thought for a moment before putting the tip of the pen to the paper.

Kaname onii-sama,

I'm sorry, but I have to go.

I love you.

She folded the note slowly, trying to get her will to leave back. She couldn't think about how badly this was going to hurt him. She left the note on her desk and was getting up from the chair when she heard footsteps approaching, Aido's presumably. She quickly and quietly snuck out the door and went the opposite way down the hall before Aido came around the corner. She went into the upper level of the mansion and snuck out the front door silently into the night.

A/N: I have big plans for this story. There will be action, romance, and reunions! Please let me know what you think so far!