"You'll greet him as 'Boss' and do anything he tells you to. He's almost as old as I am, but he's very kind and considerate for his age, so he won't do anything to hurt you," he said, propped up on an elbow, petting her hair and straightening her dress as they lay under a tree. The sunlight played between leaves and left spatters of shadow on Chrome's slender legs, which stemmed so naturally from her simple white dress. She nodded, hesitantly, and he continued. "You're going to have to fight for him, but he cannot help. I'll step in if you're in danger, but I know you can handle it if you believe in yourself." He knew she was asking in her head how he could possibly think that, but he chuckled to himself and continued. "He comes off as a little flimsy, but he has great courage and will do whatever it takes if something happens to you. So don't be scared of him, but don't doubt him." Chrome moved her gaze from the tree above over to Mukuro's eyes. They were soft and thoughtful; she knew she could trust him. "His family is a little more eccentric than he is, but they're nothing to worry about, either. You'll have lots of time to get to know them." The thought of meeting new people made her clench her fists unconsciously for her trident, which wasn't there. Mukuro saw this and knew she was nervous. Kufufu... Like sending a child to their first day of school.

"Now, then, it's almost time for you to get up and ready," he sighed, rolling onto his back then getting up. He held a hand down to Chrome and pulled her up as well. "Do you think you're ready?" he asked, tilting his head and smiling. She nodded, so slowly. And he was ready to let her go.

"Oh, one last thing," he swung back around before leaving. "When you greet him... do it like this." He leaned in and kissed her gently on the cheek. She burned red and looked him in the eyes when he'd straightened up again. But for once, he wasn't looking back at her. Just off into the distance. They stood there a moment, eyes and minds in different places, before he turned around again and walked off.

Alone again. In his own, dark little world. So different from the one Chrome had created for herself. It's better this way. He laughed to himself. There's no hope for him. And no hope for her if she continued to hold on to him. Yes. It's better this way...