A/N: A flashfic written for a request on LiveJournal. The prompt was Hisoka/Tsuzuki – the past.

Warnings: none. It's worksafe.

Disclaimer: Yami no Matsuei is the intellectual property of Yoko Matsushita and all associated companies. No profit is being made from this and no copyright infringement intended with this fan-made piece of fiction. Please support the mangaka by buying her works.


Presently

Without even seeing the hand that reached out to tap his shoulder, Hisoka shrank away from Tsuzuki's touch, more by instinct than unwillingness to come in contact with another being. He'd slowly grown used to his partner who didn't mind his episodes of heightened defensiveness.

"Sorry," they said in unison, paused, and then smiled faintly at each other.

"Is it…" Tsuzuki started, meaning Muraki. It was not secret to him that Hisoka changed whenever he could feel the doctor nearby.

Feeling the concern from his partner, Hisoka shook his head.

"No. I haven't… noticed him around for a while now."

Tsuzuki took notice of the hesitation in his voice, but chose to not comment on it, guessing right that the boy didn't want to remember more than necessary about the crazy doctor. No one in their right mind would judge him for that. He shuddered as well, feeling more depressed than what he'd been upon coming into the room. Instead, he returned to the reason which had brought him to Hisoka's room.

"You don't want to go to the party?" he asked, still standing by the couch where Hisoka sat. With 'party' he meant the greeting ceremony their boss had thrown for some new recruits.

Hisoka shook his head.

"Not really. You can go. Don't worry about me."

Now was Tsuzuki's turn to shake his head in denial. Even though he regretted missing out on the cake.

"I'd rather not. Mind if I…" He gestured at the couch and Hisoka shrugged. He hadn't even looked at him once.

"Be my guest."

Silence reigned after Tsuzuki sat down.

"I've been wondering," Hisoka said after a while. "If he can be killed."

Tsuzuki glanced at him, startled. So that's what his partner was so worried about.

"There's got to be a way," he said thoughtfully. "I almost did it last time."

Hisoka snorted, clearly remembering the last time when Tsuzuki had almost killed himself. The teen pulled his knees up to his chest and hugged them.

"Almost."

Silence reigned once again. Heavy and suffocating.

"You can't stop thinking about that cake," Hisoka stated after a while, sounding somewhat amused and Tsuzuki shot him a guilty smile.

"You could tell?"

Hisoka stared at him for a while in sheer disbelief, as though wondering if his partner was for real.

"Ever since you came in the air has been buzzing like a beehive with your cake depression." And before Tsuzuki could sputter and insist that he did not, in fact, have cake depression, Hisoka sighed and got up from the couch. "Let's go to that stupid party."

Tsuzuki's face lit up instantly and he leapt to his feet. Hisoka couldn't help but think, mentally visualizing the process, that, if his partner were a dog, his tail would have been wagging madly right now.