AN: This is my first attempt at Gakuen Heaven, and my feeble attempt to break my massive writer's block. Despite this, I hope it's not too terrible.

"Hiroya... Hiroya..."

How many times had he heard that soft, pleading voice? How many times had he felt that smooth hand clutching his own? It seemed to forever echo, a chorus of pained, sorrowful words and gentle, bittersweet touches.

Hiroya could do nothing, nothing but lay in that world of echoes, echoes of his most precious person's suffering. Word after word of apologies, word after word filled with regret.

Jin... Jin...

The words would not come. His eyes always remained closed, his body seemingly eternally limp. Yet he could hear every single word, every single uneven breath, every attempt to hold back tears in the man's shaking voice. Jin was suffering right before him, drowning in pain, regret, and Hiroya couldn't do one damn thing to ease the man's heartbreaking sobs.

He was stuck in a waking dream, stuck with the knowledge that the man he loved was withering away with each passing day.

No pain from the virus could ever compare.

I'm so sorry, Jin... I'm so sorry...

"Hiroya... I'm sorry... I'm so sorry..."

He would open his eyes one day. He would touch that hair brushing against him, would hold the broken man close, he would... he would break free from the echoes of misery. One day... one day...

One day the echoes would die, and he would replace them. Replace them with a smile. Wait for me, Jin... please wait for me...

If only Jin could keep hold until then. He prayed, prayed with each sound echoing in his ears, prayed with each tear of Jin's pelting his slack face. He prayed that the increasingly damaged man could keep hold until his eyes finally opened.

Jin... Wait for me.

"Hiroya... Wait for me."

It was an echo. A terrible, heart-wrenching echo that seemed to never end.