A/N: I don't know why, but I just love hurt/comfort between these two. Slight companion fic to Unsolvable, but you really don't need to read both.
Judai kept his eyes on the horizon, legs crossed underneath his lean frame. He did not want to face his dorm, just yet. His familiar bed, his friends... They said they were so glad to have him back, safe, but they'd never admit half of their anger towards him. For putting them in those positions, for changing on them when he was their one constant all this time. They'd needed him to stay strong, to stay how they knew him, and he'd failed them in that respect.
And he hated himself, a little bit, too. Because they were important to him, more important than they knew, and they might never forgive him. Sure, they might smile and say they felt so glad to have him here, but he could see the doubt in their eyes.
Johan. Something else all together.
"Johan," he replied, a hint of a smile crossing his face. "Are you speaking to me?"
Johan paused, frowning. "Of course, why wouldn't I be? Who - who isn't?" He asked the question nervously, as if he expected a name. Or two. Or more. The bitter thoughts directed at Judai weren't a secret, by any means.
"I don't know," Judai said. Johan sat beside him, and the fight rushed out of him. "Everyone," he murmured, his voice plagued with a somber note that Johan had never heard there before. "Johan... they'll never get over this. I don't know if I can get over this." His hands rose to the middle of his chest, pushing it in.
"What do you mean?" Johan asked, gentle as ever. Johan was tenderness where Judai was energy.
"This year... these last three years, even," Judai said. "They were all about my finding myself, weren't they? And everyone else got dragged into it - "
"Hold on a second," Johan said.
"No," Judai interrupted, voice breaking. "It's my fault, all of it. And the worst part is, I don't feel as guilty as I should. I needed to find Yubel, I needed… all of that, but – but…." He stared down at the ground, eyes pinching together. "I never meant to hurt them. And Johan," he looked up, the tears in his eyes catching Johan off guard, "I especially never meant to hurt you."
"You didn't." Johan smiled, his token cheer visible. Well, at least someone could still be happy. "Judai, forget about the past, for a second. If I hadn't met you, do you think my life would be as close to as good as now? I found a friend in you, Judai. I found a friend in you, Judai. The best friend I've ever had." He sat back on his heels, eyes on the fading sky. "Maybe… maybe something more than that, you know?" Judai gave a choked little laugh, invisible consent to that, and Johan felt his heart warm. "You need to let this guilt pass you, Judai. Things won't get better until you do." He put his arm slowly around Judai's back, friendly and loving all at once. "You need to let this go."
"I can't," Judai replied, half-sobbing. "I can't." He shut his eyes tight, shaking his head.
"Yes you can," Johan sighed, after a moment. "I'll help you." He saw his moment, and pulled Judai gently against his shoulder. It took only another second for the Slifer to dissolve.
He sobbed in short little gasps, murmuring incoherently about all he wished he could change. His tears soaked Johan's jacket and then skin, an electric fluid infused with all the pain in the world.
"The bad things in the world, Judai," Johan whispered, his own eyes moist, "they aren't your fault. Not any of them. And – and I know you want to change them all, but you can't, Judai… you make the world better by just being alive, don't you see that?"
Judai clenched his jaw tightly, shaking his head against Johan's collarbone. He wanted to stay here forever, safe and forgiven. Whatever Johan said… the others didn't believe that. They blamed Judai for everything, and he could feel it.
"I can't fix you," Johan murmured, tears slipping into Judai's hair. "I wish I could do that, and I can't. See Judai…" he murmured, gripping the red jacket in fistfuls. "…You aren't the only one who can't be a super hero."
Judai thought of his monsters. Superheroes. But they didn't have to live in this world, the world where things could be irreparable. The world wasn't so much like dueling after all, and he'd begun to learn that. "You do fix me," he whispered, after a second. "When I'm with you, it doesn't hurt so much." He gave a short laugh, wiping his cheeks. "Sorry," he muttered.
"Don't be," Johan replied, a smile returning to his face. "You feel better, don't you?" Judai nodded, sheepishly moving away from Johan; he missed the warmth, now that they were apart. "Then that's what matters." The Obelisk stood up, hand outstretched to his friend. "Come on, let's go to dinner. Show everyone that you – the you that you always were, whether they believe it or not – is back."
Judai smiled, just a little, because maybe someone understood; someone who didn't live in his head. "Okay." Johan surprised him then, reaching out to envelope his fingers. Judai's hand was the smaller of the two, but barely.
"Let's go, then," Johan said. They walked back to the dorms together, hand in hand. And Judai felt warm again, because maybe a little touch was all it took. Just a little reminder that he wasn't alone, that he didn't have to let it go all by himself.
A/N: Reviews are much appreciated :). Thanks a lot!