Disclaimer: I don't own Ouran. Bisco Hatori owns it and its incredible ending X3
This fic takes place directly after the end of the manga, which means SPOILERS. If you haven't read the final chapter of the manga yet, this fic gives everything away. So keep that in mind before reading. I couldn't help writing this... the last chapter was SO PERFECT.
This is for Kelsy, the Tamaki to my Haruhi XD I love you, wifey!
Exhausted, Haruhi slumped over her small desk and wiped her tired eyes. Schoolwork in English was more difficult than she would have expected; she couldn't simply do it, she first had to translate the words internally, come up with the answer, and word it into English before writing it down. All in all, the experience left her worn out and she could use nothing more than a distraction.
She was surprised to find that there was not one readily available. She had made sure to keep a heavy piece of furniture in front of the door between she and Tamaki's apartments, and he had been wailing about it and pounding on it all week, telling her how foolish it was to force her lover to use the foyer to visit her. But now he was strangely silent, and it worried her slightly. Setting down her pencil, she leaned back in her chair and stared at the door for a moment. She had forbidden unnecessary interaction between the two of them, but now for a moment- just a moment, of course- she regretted it.
"Tamaki-senpai?" she called softly, still watching the door. There was no answer. Slowly, she got up from her desk chair and moved toward the door that separated her from him. Her hand reached out slowly and touched the warm wood for just a moment before she made up her mind. Trying to be as quiet as she could (though it didn't matter; he was probably out at the moment, anyway), she moved the cabinet away from the door. There wasn't anywhere in the living room where it would fit, so she simply left it in the middle of the room to be put back later and went back to her homework, feeling strangely satisfied.
Haruhi worked diligently on her homework, finished it, and then took out one of the workbooks Ayame had lent her and began to work on her English. By the time she stopped to take a break, the sky had darkened a bit, and it worried her. She could see the sky through the window over her desk, and the clouds that rolled in were dark and foreboding.
"Dammit…" she muttered to herself, drawing the blinds as though it would stop the storm from coming. The weather had been relatively nice since she and Tamaki had arrived in Boston nearly a month ago, and she hoped maybe, just maybe, the storm would pass and the nice weather would stick.
Ten minutes later when she was tidying up, the first raindrops hit the windows. She cast a worrying glance outside and swept more furiously. The apartment was silent aside from the sounds of the rain. The other six host club members were nowhere to be seen, which was odd for them. For a moment Haruhi nearly panicked, feeling utterly alone in the world in the face of the storm, and then she came back to her senses and went back to work. When the first flash of lightning lit the walls, she ignored it and kept dusting the bookshelf. When the first thunderclap shook the floor slightly, she ignored that too. But the second was rather loud and her self-control went out the window. With the same terrified squeak a child would make, she dove under her coffee table, feeling a little ridiculous.
"It's just clouds, Haruhi. Remember?" she tried to reassure herself, but nothing in the world could have made her come out from under the safety of that slab of wood. She was still there a few seconds later when there was a soft knock on the door that led into Tamaki's apartment.
"Haruhi?" his voice asked, soft and gentle. She didn't reply, squeezing herself into a tighter fetal position. "Can I come in please?" Tamaki sounded calm for once, plus he had actually remembered to speak English. The effect was almost eerie.
"Sure," she croaked, and Tamaki opened the door and came into her apartment. She peeked out at him standing in the doorway like some kind of white knight ready for battle.
"Hey, it's okay," he told her, holding out a hand to her as he came closer. "I'm here now so there's no reason to be afraid. Come out of there, Haruhi."
For a moment Haruhi tried to listen, but her body refused to move, tense from the fear. She simply stayed in the little space under the coffee table and refused to move. She was surprised when its shadow left her and she looked up a bit to see Tamaki move the table off to the side and lean down.
"What were you doing under there all by yourself?" he asked fondly as he scooped her up in his arms and carried her over to the sofa. "I'm right next door, Haruhi. You know you can always come to me when you're afraid, don't you?"
"I'm not used to it," she admitted, teeth chattering a little. She was just a bit miffed at him lifting her out of her hiding place but his chest felt safe against her cheek and she kept quiet. Her eyes widened and she struggled a bit as he sat down on her sofa and cradled her in his arms, pulling the throw blanket over them.
"You're never going to get used to it if you don't start letting me be here for you," Tamaki told her, sounding wise. "So please stop trying to get away. Just let me do this. Let me protect you."
Haruhi was surprised. He had never really spoken to her this way before, and it made sense. She went limp and almost immediately he bent his torso protectively down over her and pulled her closer, so close she swore she was going to melt into him. Reflexively her cheeks reddened as they had in such close proximity to him since her love confession.
"Tamaki-senpai," she muttered, not sure if she was comfortable with being so close to him. His heartbeat thudded strong and warm against her ear, and one of his hands closed over her other ear to block out the thunder a bit. Automatically she closed her eyes.
"I love you, Haruhi," he said finally, rocking her just a bit. "I love you so much and I've loved you so completely for so long. I'm very happy that you let me be the one you gave your heart to, and I'll always be grateful for moments like these. I'd like to always be the one you come to when you need help, if that's possible."
"It's going to be a long time before I can stop trying to deal with things on my own," Haruhi admitted slowly, lulled by the thudding of his heart. "And if I ever do just come to you for help every time I need it, it's going to take a long time for that to happen. But to be honest… I'm really happy you're here right now, senpai."
She felt his smile more than she saw it, felt his lips press her forehead, opened her eyes to see his face close to hers, his eyes staring soulfully into her own. "I always will be here," he whispered. "And that's a promise. I said I always wanted to be by your side, and I meant it."
"It's weird hearing you say things like that," she said bluntly. "But it's nice." she smiled at him and he kissed her then without warning. She tensed for a moment and then kissed him back, her hands closing around handfuls of his clean t-shirt, a little embarrassed but finding it was easier each time, easier than the first time they had kissed passionately, that night on the balcony. He pulled back to smile at her and then kissed her again. And again. Slowly the sound of the thunder and the flash of the lightning seemed to fade until they were enclosed in a world of unfearing peace. His kisses were chaste but still intimate, and it felt like he understood her, like he could see everything she kept hidden from him and from the world. Tamaki kept giving those kisses to her, long and slow and innocent (and sometimes almost not) until the sky cleared and the sun fell across them through the windows.
"I'm glad you came with me," Haruhi confessed when they sat in the sunny silence, Tamaki still refusing to let her go. "It's annoying sometimes but it's still really… it's really nice to know that you're right there, and that I won't get lonely for you."
"So you admit you'd miss me!" Tamaki said triumphantly, squeezing her tighter against his chest.
"I never said that!" Haruhi argued, struggling. "I said 'lonely', never 'miss'! Stop putting words in my mouth!"
Tamaki just laughed and kissed her again, quieting her, before he looked into her eyes once more. "I would miss you," he told her earnestly, kissing her forehead. "I could never be away from you for a year. But more than that, I came here with you so you wouldn't have to be lonely like you said. I promised that night at the beach that I would always look after you, and I never break a promise. I always want to be with you, Haruhi"
Haruhi flushed, not really sure what to say, and simply stared at him. He stared back, his eyes soft and his smile warm. For a moment Haruhi reflected back on that moment in his arms at Nekozawa's beach house, that time when he had made that long-kept promise to her, and she was surprised to realize that though they had been deeply buried and she had not wanted to accept them, from that moment her feelings for him had been the same.
'We've come so far… but it's kind of nice to know that even now, even so far from home, together we're in the same place…'
"I always want to be with you, too," she admitted finally, smiling surely up at him and watching his mouth open in surprise. "So I guess we should get started."
"On what?" Tamaki asked, smiling a little, and she climbed out of his lap.
"Always being together," she answered and watched him grin bright as the sun, as always.
"And what do we do first?" he asked her, taking her in his arms and dipping her for a moment to kiss her head dizzy.
"We make dinner," Haruhi said matter-of-factly, pulling away and heading for the kitchen of her apartment, Tamaki at her heels and yipping as excitedly as Antoinette did behind them. She rolled her eyes a bit but found that she was not really annoyed. "And I make a promise to try to start coming to you when I need you."
"That sounds like a plan," Tamaki told her with a smile, his blondish hair glowing in the light that seeped in through the kitchen window. Haruhi smiled back and then started making curry, trying not to be distracted by Tamaki's whines for more kisses.
From that day on, no piece of furniture ever blocked the door that led her to him.