Disclaimers: Don't own KHR or its characters.

Warnings: fluff, swearing, lemon.



"Gokudera-kun? Hibari-kun?"

Yamamoto Tsuyoshi's warm, gentle voice not unlike his son's softly woke up the two. Yamamoto had been transferred from the Operation Room to the Intensive Care Unit around almost midnight last night, but only his father was allowed to be with him. This left Gokudera sitting outside of the intensive care unit adjacent to Hibari, who fell asleep on Dino's shoulder. Both stayed there all night. Gokudera didn't remember when he, himself, lost consciousness – or even how he got to the front of the unit in the first place. The last thing he could really remember was the doctor's voice telling him that Yamamoto was safe – the enormous tidal wave of relief crashing into him so hard Gokudera physically crumpled to the floor.

"Tsuyoshi-san...?" Hibari was the first out of the two of them to be awake enough to speak. He untangled himself from Dino's arms – the blonde still sleeping soundlessly – before he turned his attention to Tsuyoshi. "How is Takeshi?"

Gokudera still felt woozy from yesterday's events but he kept his focus enough to keep on listening. His hand was hurting like the devil and his wounds were stinging positively everywhere, but right now, there was something more important than all that. There was someone much more important than all that.

"Takeshi's just woken up," Tsuyoshi smiled gently at the two of them, "I told him that you two are waiting out here. He'd asked for you both."

A giant question immediately hung over Gokudera's and Hibari's head like a dark, brooding cloud: who goes in to see him first?

The Skylark was already glaring at Gokudera in that ferocious, predatory way as though in warning – an animal furiously protective of its nest. In Hibari's mind, it was only natural that he would see Yamamoto first.

Is that really a matter to question? Gokudera Hayato does not even have the right to see Takeshi at all because, really, he's only in hospital because of him. It's Gokudera Hayato's fault that Yamamoto Takeshi is even hurt. How dare this colour gang rebel even have the nerve to think that he sees Takeshi first?

But Gokudera was not going to back down and let Hibari walk all over him like he did last night. Yamamoto was now safe and Gokudera desperately needed to see it with his own eyes – he needed to make sure that the one sole brightness in his life had not dimmed or had been damaged by this experience. If not, Gokudera wouldn't know how to handle the guilt. Plus, Gokudera had literally been on the verge of insanity for the duration of Yamamoto being in the OR and frankly, he'd be damned if he had to wait a second longer. So, to hell if he was going to let this Hibari Kyouya see Yamamoto first. As if the Skylark hadn't already had far too many 'firsts' with Yamamoto.

The tension between Hibari Kyouya and Gokudera Hayato was so intense it was almost tangible. Tsuyoshi could see the rising conflict in their eyes, the challenge building up in their posture. He shook his head calmly, "Boys... Takeshi asked to see both of you. At the same time."

The mental gasps of outrage of both males were audible through their expressions. Then, simultaneously, the two of them frowned. What on earth is the baseball idiot thinking this time?

The thought of the three of them – the ex-lover, the two-timer, and the third-party – all in the same room having casual conversation was more than just a tad ridiculous. Neither Gokudera nor Hibari had ever expected this. They never saw it coming, not in a hundred years. Not to mention, neither were exactly pleased with having to share their time with Yamamoto with the other. Their relationships with Yamamoto was supposed to be exclusive – two sets of data that were never meant to overlap.

However, the desire to see Yamamoto's wellbeing outweighed all issues of pride and fear of awkward social situations. If Yamamoto wanted to see them at the same time... well, Yamamoto can have it as he wished.

With Gokudera's hand on one door and Hibari's on the other, together – ironic as it was – the two walked into Yamamoto's room.

Yamamoto didn't look as horrible as one would've expected – having gone through surgery and all. In fact, it would be fair to say that on external appearances alone, Gokudera looked much more like the one supposed to be in bed in the intensive care unit.

Gokudera had expected the worst – Yamamoto all pale and sickly, wrapped up in rolls and rolls of bandages to the point of mummification, those unnerving oxygen masks on his face, tubes of different fluids as well as electrical wires hanging from every inch of his skin... however, in reality, Yamamoto was simply sitting on his propped up bed, an IV fluid bag attached to his wrist, no bandages visible, and his face bright with that forever-summer smile as soon as he saw who came in.

Gokudera found himself paralyzed on the spot. Unable to move, unable to think, unable to breathe.

Hibari quickly pushed past him to Yamamoto's side, taking his hand in a bruising grip. "Yamamoto Takeshi. Can I not leave you for five minutes without you idiotically throwing yourself into danger?"

Yamamoto winced at the intense grip but flashed Hibari a weak smile. "Hi, Hibari."

"Don't give me that. And stop it with the foolish smile. Do you want to be bitten to death?" Hibari glared, though his grip on Yamamoto's hand softened. Quietly, he mumbled, "How dare you go around hurting yourself..."

"I'm sorry," Yamamoto, out of habit, used his free hand to brush Hibari's hair back from his face. "I'm glad you came to see me. I thought-"

"Of course I did." Hibari said, firmly.

Yamamoto chuckled, "Right. Of course."

Gokudera watched the two from afar with a feeling of wanting to run from there, but found his feet glued to the floor, his eyes glued to the scene. The overwhelming atmosphere of warmth and care that emanated from Yamamoto and Hibari only made Gokudera feel the words he'd used against himself, many times before, punctuated in his chest: 'Outsider'. 'Unwelcomed'. 'Home-wrecker'. 'Unwanted'.

I shouldn't be here.

Gokudera thought, but his body refused to move.


Yamamoto had looked over Hibari's shoulder and spotted him. The smile that Yamamoto was giving him was just as warm and caring as it ever was, but Gokudera found himself unable to meet his eyes. Subconsciously, Gokudera took a step back, looking at the floor, rolling in his lips.

"Gokudera," Yamamoto's eyes softened. "...won't you come closer?"

Gokudera's hands curled themselves into tight little fists by his side. It wasn't as though he didn't want to be right by Yamamoto's side, because he did, so badly. He wanted to rush over to Yamamoto and hold the guy in his arms, to make sure with his very own hands that Yamamoto was safe; to let Yamamoto know that he was so sorry for dragging Yamamoto into this, and that he was stupid, so stupid to try and do things by himself; and, above all, to let Yamamoto know just how much Gokudera loved him. Even more so now than ever.

But Gokudera couldn't move.

It's not my place. I don't even deserve to see him. I don't deserve his smile. Clearly, he is happy with Hibari Kyouya and I shouldn't... 'intervene'. I never should have. I've always known it, anyways, haven't I? That Yamamoto doesn't belong in my world – that Yamamoto shouldn't be dragged down and tainted by being with someone like me.

Remember what you said, Gokudera Hayato? That as long as he's safe, you'll be satisfied just to watch him live his life happily? That you'll let him thrive in the light and never pull him back into the shade?

I can't go any closer. I can't. I can't allow him to be harmed like this, not again, not ever-

"Gokudera," Yamamoto's smile gradually became replaced with an expression of concern. Worry was shining in his eyes, and he reached out one hand towards Gokudera. "...come here? Please?"

Gokudera only screwed his eyes shut tight, willing himself to stay in his spot. His fists had clenched in on themselves so much that his injured hand was starting to bleed through the bandages. I'm sorry, but I can't. I can't go near you. I can't.

...even though I want to. Even though it's killing me to be here when you're right there and I can't even touch you.

Yamamoto hated seeing the pain written all over Gokudera's face. The silvernette wouldn't even make eye contact with him – those precious emeralds hidden away from his sight. He didn't understand why Gokudera was behaving like this, or what Gokudera was so afraid of, but Yamamoto was not about to let Gokudera start becoming difficult. Not when everything is finally over. Not when Yamamoto had finally found clarity. Not when Yamamoto had finally decided to pour everything he had into making Gokudera happy. Gokudera, and no one else.

Making eye contact with Hibari for a second, Yamamoto looked back intently at Gokudera and spoke firmly, "...Hayato, I need you."

Gokudera gasped quietly at the throb Yamamoto's words sent through his heart. His head snapped up, and his eyes finally, finally, met Yamamoto's. Broken emeralds meeting molten dark chocolate – and that was all it took for Gokudera's legs to start acting on their own and pulled Gokudera towards the place he longed to be. It was almost like a magnetic pull, a gravitation – natural, gentle, but untenable.

He sat down next to Yamamoto, and as soon as Gokudera was within reach, Yamamoto stretched out his free arm to touch Gokudera's heavily bruised face. His thumb ran over the bandage across Gokudera's cheek, and Gokudera leaned into the touch, the familiar warmth, raising one hand to cover Yamamoto's with his own. All the time, their eyes never broke contact.

"Are you okay?" Yamamoto asked gently, "How are your injuries? Do they hurt a lot?"

Gokudera looked at Yamamoto as though he had just asked the most ridiculous question, "You're the one who's just been in surgery, baseball-idiot."

Yamamoto smiled, "Doesn't mean I can't be worried about you, still."

"Well, you worry too much. And not enough of it is about yourself."

"It's only natural. After all, I live with a difficult, feisty stray cat who always seem to run head-first into trouble."

"Oi, oi."

Gokudera frowned at him, and Yamamoto just grinned right back – and just a moment later, almost in synchronization, the two broke out into light, child-like laughter. After so much weight on their heavy hearts, the relief that finally washed over them both lifted them into a giddy bubble of happiness.

How could I ever think I could live without him is beyond me. Gokudera thought to himself as he held Yamamoto's hand close to his chest, his eyes watching Yamamoto's face as he laughed. To know his warmth, this happiness – this love – and live without it would be like living a life of a corpse.

On the other side of the bed, Hibari watched the interaction between the two with an unexpected sense of calmness. He had gotten chills when Yamamoto first touched Gokudera's face – there was something about the motion and the way Gokudera's eyes looked at Yamamoto that was vividly familiar. Reluctantly, Hibari allowed himself to admit that it reminded him of Dino and himself.

Dark eyes of the Skylark looked down at Yamamoto's hand he was still holding. He noticed that Yamamoto's hand no longer held his hand back, their fingers were just left passively intertwined. The moment Gokudera Hayato had sat down beside the bed, all of Yamamoto's attention had shifted to him, all five senses focusing in on the silvernette and nothing else.

Good. I want him to be happy. Hibari watched as Yamamoto's hand tucked a strand of silver hair behind his ears – just like he used to do with him.

There is no longer a place for me next to him. Hibari realised with a sense of nostalgia. Slowly, he untwined his fingers from Yamamoto's and removed his hand away.

Yamamoto took notice, however, before Hibari could make his quiet escape.

"Ah, Kyouya, are you leaving?"

"Hn." I've seen that you are well. I'm no longer needed here.

Yamamoto's brown eyes were bright like a puppy's, his smile like warm sunshine. "...thanks for everything, Senpai."

Hibari's dark eyes softened. He hesitated, before he reached his hand out to ruffle Yamamoto's hair one last time. Then, he stood up and walked towards the door.

Just before Hibari turned the handle and left, the Skylark paused – his back still turned towards the bed.

"Gokudera Hayato."

Gokudera jolted. He did not expect his name to come out of Hibari's lips. "Yeah?"

"What I said outside the OR – don't forget."

'If you hurt him, I will kill you.'

The message rang well and clear in Gokudera's head. The Skylark turned his head to glance at Gokudera with those eagle-sharp eyes. The silvernette simply nodded – Hibari didn't need to say that. He had no intention of letting the smallest amount of harm ever touch Yamamoto again.

Satisfied with Gokudera's response, Hibari Kyouya left the room.

Dino was still sleeping when Hibari found him on the same chair he left him at. The Italian looked so innocent in his sleep, much more like a child than a mafia boss of the notorious Cavallone famiglia. The only two things which gave it away were the tattoos running down Dino's neck and arms, and the two bodyguards Dino had lingering around the hospital hallways – their crisp, dark suits contrasting with the pure white walls of the hospital.

"Dino," Hibari called him, giving him a light nudge on the shoulders.

Dino remained undisturbed and unmoving, still sleeping soundlessly and peacefully.

Hibari frowned. A mafia boss should wake easier than this – what if someone was trying to assassinate him?

Hibari decided to give said mafia boss a sharp kick in the shin. "Dino."

"Ow-" Dino finally stirred, frowning at the pain in his leg and was about to lash out at whoever caused him that pain – that was, until he saw that the culprit was no one else other than his beloved little Skylark. The frown dissolved right off his face and became a heart-melting smile in an instant. "'Morning, Kyouya."

Dino looked dashingly – and annoyingly – handsome for someone who had just woken. He ran his hand through his blonde hair, effortlessly looking like something which dropped right out of a magazine. Although, due to his trademark clumsiness, Dino did not manage to get his mussed-up hair quite right without a proper mirror.

Hibari sighed and brushed Dino's hand away, sorting out the man's hair himself. Him? A mafia boss? I don't think so.

Dino grinned up at him, wrapping his arms around his lover's slim waist and resting his chin on Hibari's torso, looking up at the Skylark with enchanted caramel eyes. "How long have you been up?"

"A while," Hibari said, lifting Dino's hands back up to his waist when they tried to sneakily slide down lower, "I went to see Yamamoto just now."

"Oh?" Dino slipped one hand under the back of Hibari's shirt, "How was he? All safe?"

Hibari smacked the hand away, "Yes, he's well. Gokudera Hayato is with him."

"Good, good." Dino all of a sudden pulled Hibari into his lap, the Skylark's legs spread on each side of his body. "You were so worried about Yamamoto Takeshi, I couldn't help but be a little jealous."

"Don't be stupid," Hibari frowned. "And stop that – we're in a public hospital."

"No one's around," Dino said nonchalantly, bending in to nuzzle Hibari's pale neck.

"Not here. You body guards are watching-" Hibari tried to push Dino's head away, but the blonde was persistent, not caring about Hibari's protests as he nipped the nape of Hibari's neck. Chills ran up his spine, and pink tinted Hibari's cheeks, "Nn- Dino-"

"Mm-hm?" Dino said in between kissing Hibari's collar bone, "What is it, love?"


A tonfa appeared out of nowhere and smacked Dino across the chin. It was only a light hit, considering how much force the Skylark usually had, but it still stunned Dino enough to let Hibari go.

"Ow-! Kyouya, what was that for?" Dino whined, cradling his chin.

"Not here, I said." Hibari huffed.

Dino didn't give up, "...it's okay somewhere else, then?"

Hibari gave Dino a 'look', before he turned his back and started heading down the hallway of the hospital without him.

"Wait! Kyouya! Is that a yes?" Dino quickly got to his feet and started following his Skylark like an overexcited puppy, "Is it? Where should we go?"

"Shut up, Dino."

"...so what did Hibari say to you?" Yamamoto was curious.

"Nothing much," Gokudera shrugged, "I would've said the exact same thing to him."

Yamamoto still looked curious, but didn't push on the subject.

"What happened between you two, anyways?" Gokudera leaned on the side of the bed, "He just up and left. That simple. I was expecting him to beat the shit out of me the moment I touched you."

Yamamoto chuckled, "Don't be silly. Hibari's fierce, but he wouldn't hit you I don't think."

Gokudera scoffed.

"What?" Yamamoto's eyes widened. "He did?"

Gokudera shrugged and sighed, "It's fine. He had the right to be angry. To be fair, I'd do the same."

"Whoa," Yamamoto looked shocked. He could only imagine how vicious his ex-lover could be, having had been on the wrong end of Hibari's tonfas himself. "Are you hurt? How hard did he hit you?"

"No, it's fine. Really." I deserved it, anyways. "Now tell me why he left so easily. Did something happen?"

"Well," Yamamoto linked his fingers with Gokudera's, "We broke up."


There was a long, long silence. Gokudera was still as a stone.

"...Hayato?" Yamamoto inquired, uncertainly.

"...you did what?"

"We broke up, Hibari and I."

"Like- for real?"

"Yeah." Yamamoto nodded firmly.

"But-" Gokudera's emerald eyes were wide and confused when they looked up at Yamamoto's, "But why?"

After all this time of me chasing and hiding and wanting but never fully having... why, all of a sudden, do I get exactly what I want? Surely, it couldn't be this easy. Surely, there must be a catch. Maybe they're on some sort of break again?

I can't let myself be over the moon – I can't get ahead of myself. Surely, it couldn't be...

"I thought-" Gokudera found himself dumbfounded, "I thought you were in love with him."

"I was." Yamamoto admitted, "But he was in love with someone else."


...so that's why, huh? Gokudera's heart sunk. Slowly, he felt the bitterness grow within him, weighing on his chest, leaving a bad taste in his mouth. First-choice wasn't available, so that's why you chose me?

Gokudera mentally kicked himself. Of course. What do you expect, Hayato? Of course he wouldn't just pick you over Hibari Kyouya. Why would someone pick someone like you – broken, tattered, scarred – over someone like him?

Smile. You should be happy. At least you got what you've wanted, right? Don't be greedy, Hayato, you can't be. It doesn't matter if you weren't his first choice – Yamamoto's here with you now, that should be more than you could ever ask for...


Yamamoto saw Gokudera's expression change from surprise, to shock, to realization, then to a bitter, broken smile. Immediately, he knew that Gokudera was misunderstanding things.

"Wait, Hayato, I don't think you understand-"

"Oh, no. No, it's fine. I understand." Gokudera flashed him a forced smile, "I'm grateful."

'Grateful'? Yamamoto shook his head rapidly. "No, no, no, Hayato, you've got it all wrong-!"

"You don't have to say anything. It's okay, really, Yamamoto. It's okay. I can accept it as it is. This is good- no, it's more than good enough."

"But, Hayato, that isn't it!"Yamamoto could just see Gokudera mentally crawling deeper and deeper into his own misunderstanding, and he was beginning to panic, not knowing how to pull Gokudera back and make Gokudera see things the way it really was. "I didn't break up with Hibari only because he was in love with someone else. It was because I was in love with someone else, too. And it's you – Gokudera, you must believe me. And yes, I'll admit, I did love Hibari – I probably still do, but it's different now. It's not the same with you. It's not the same as the way I love you, Hayato."

Gokudera only stared at him with sad, dull green eyes. In a quiet, calm voice, he murmured. "...you don't have to lie just to make me happy, Yamamoto."

Oh god, this is going all wrong... Yamamoto was becoming more and more frustrated. "Hayato, listen to me-"

"No, stop. You've said enough, it's okay."

"You're not listening to me, I'm trying to tell you that I-"

"You just came out of surgery, you should rest-"


"You don't have to say anything else-"

"My god, Hayato, why is it so hard for you to just believe that I love you!"

"..." Gokudera fell silent.

Yamamoto went on, "I love you – that's why I want to be with you. That's why I can't be with Hibari, because even when I do love him, I'll always leave him for you. I'll always place you as first priority, I'll always come to you first if you call, and I don't know since when this had happened, but recently, every morning I wake up the first thing I think of is you. Not Hibari – you. I spend hours of my day thinking about what I want to do with you when I see you – make you your favourite sushi, try to convince you to play baseball, go out on a drive on your motorbike, fall asleep with you in my arms."

Yamamoto gripped Gokudera's hand firmly with his own, " Whenever something good happens to me I want you to be the first to know, I want to be there for you whenever you need someone, and I want to be the one to make you the happiest you'll ever be. I don't feel this way about anyone else, only you. I love you that much, Hayato, and that's why I want to be with you. Why won't you let me? Why don't you even believe me? I can't believe you'd think I'd lie about something like this."

Yamamoto's voice wavered slightly, "...don't you trust me at all?"

There was a long silence after that, Yamamoto's words slowly sinking into Gokudera. Yamamoto looked at his lover with desperate eyes, hoping he had managed to make the silvernette understand. Eventually, Gokudera spoke in a tiny voice.

"...no sense." Gokudera mumbled, his face turned towards the floor.

Yamamoto frowned, "What?"

"It makes no sense!" Gokudera lifted his head, his emerald eyes shining with tears. "It makes absolutely no sense that someone like you would love me! I'm sorry, Yamamoto, I want to believe you, but I can't. I just- I can't! It's just- It- It's not possible. I just- I just c-can't- I- I-"

Yamamoto could see that Gokudera was crumbling, his fingertips were shaking, and his breaths were erratic, like he was about to have a panic attack. Scared of that happening, Yamamoto pulled the folded-over Gokudera onto the bed with him and cradled him in his arms. Feeling Gokudera trembling and hearing his hitched cries like a scared little bird made tears come to Yamamoto's own eyes. What sort of pain did you go through that made you become like this? "Shh, I'm sorry. I'm sorry for pushing you, please don't cry anymore, okay?"

Gokudera clung onto Yamamoto's shoulders and buried his face into Yamamoto's neck, sobbing. "I- I don't want you to t-think it's anything to do with me not l-loving you. Because I do, Yamamoto. I r-really do. I don't want to l-lose you-"

"I know, Hayato. It's okay. It's okay now, shh, I'm here. I'm right here. I'm not going anywhere," if Yamamoto could envelope Gokudera into his arms and take all the pain onto himself, he would have. He closed his eyes and sighed, feeling helpless.

"When I thought I might h-have lost you, a-and it's all because of me, I- I couldn't even-" Gokudera cried harder, fingers gripping desperately onto Yamamoto's shirt. "...I love you, Takeshi."

Yamamoto felt a tear roll down his face with those words. He was happy, of course – he was overjoyed, in fact – but the way Gokudera had said those words with such anguish made his heart ache for him. Why is it so hard for you to accept love? Why do you resist it so much?

...what happened to you, Gokudera?

"If you love me," Yamamoto moved back to look Gokudera in the eyes, wiping the fresh tears away with the back of his hand, his own eyes wet. "Please, tell me what I should do. I'm out of cards, Hayato. I don't know what I can do to make you believe me."

"It's not your fault," Gokudera shook his head slowly, closing his eyes. "It's just that- there's- there's something you should know."

Yamamoto nodded quietly, patiently – giving Gokudera his time.

Gokudera exhaled and inhaled deeply. Once, twice – and a stuttered breath the third time. Before eventually, his lips parted to let out the words he never thought he would utter.

"...it's about my father."

Yamamoto could not believe it.

All the horrible things Gokudera had gone through in his life – and from his own father, no less. Gokudera had told him all of it, from the time of his mother's death, to when his father started drinking, to the verbal abuse which became physical and more frequent as the days went by, and then finally, to the part where his own father sold him off to that bastard, Takumi.

In a way, it all made sense now. Why Gokudera was so guarded, why he had trust issues, all those suspicious bruises, the broken look in those emerald eyes – the reason why Gokudera found it so difficult to let anyone in, to believe anyone would love him. Because if a child was raised by hate, being drilled into his head every day, every hour, every minute in that alcohol-drenched house that he was worth nothing, that no one could ever love him, that all he deserved was the abuse that he got – then, it was more than understandable why the child would grow up to be so broken. Gokudera was brought up to believe that he was undeserving of love – that he had no value, that he was unworthy – it was ingrained in him.

And whilst Yamamoto was so angry, so furious at Gokudera's father for doing what he did, his love and admiration for Gokudera grew all the more. Because even after everything Gokudera had been through, he still managed to be so strong, so resilient, and yes, so broken, but still so beautiful. Out of all the wreckage, Gokudera emerged like a butterfly – albeit with its wings a little torn here and there, but still complete in its grace and glory.

Yamamoto had held Gokudera's hand the whole time Gokudera told him everything – his voice occasionally cracking, his hand occasionally gripping Yamamoto's tighter. It made Yamamoto all the prouder that Gokudera picked him to share his most vulnerable side with, and Yamamoto had sworn to himself that he would do anything for this person.

"You can't go back there," Yamamoto insisted, "Please don't. You can stay with me, or with the Dynamites – anything, just please don't go back to that house. I know he's your dad, but-"

"I know, I won't," Gokudera promised. He was calmer now – talking through everything was surprisingly easier than he thought. Maybe it was because it was Yamamoto he was talking to, but afterwards, Gokudera felt as though a huge mountain had been lifted from his shoulders. "My father's last chance was destroyed after what Takumi did to me." And after what that monster did to you as well.

"Okay, okay, good," Yamamoto sighed in relief, hugging Gokudera, "I wish I had known. All along. All this time." All that suffering you had to go through all by yourself.

Gokudera shook his head, "Even if you knew, I wouldn't have been able to cut myself from him back then anyways. I guess I still had that foolish belief that one day he will come to his senses, you know? That one day he'll go back to being the father he used to be. Stupid, isn't it? And I keep calling other people idiots, when I'm the biggest fool of them all, heh."

"It's not stupid at all," Yamamoto said.

Gokudera scoffed. "Oh, come on-"

"No, really. I mean it."

Gokudera paused, then allowed his guards to fall as he weakly leaned his head against Yamamoto's shoulder. He whispered, "...thank you."

"We'll sort it out together, okay? Your father needs to get professional help, and I don't want him anywhere where he can still hurt you. We'll contact your sister about it as well, if that's okay?"

"Yeah," Gokudera nodded – somehow, coming out of Yamamoto's mouth, those words seemed to make so much more sense than anyone else's ever did. "I'll call Bianchi tonight and tell her everything."

"Okay," Yamamoto agreed, "And Gokudera...?"


Yamamoto took a deep breath. "...it's okay if you don't believe me right now. I understand."

Gokudera smiled weakly at him, "I'm sorry."

"No, don't be," Yamamoto held Gokudera's uninjured hand in both of his, "Leave it to me. I'll make you believe it, someday. I don't care how long it takes." He grinned, "I'll simply have to shower you with so much love that you have no other option but to finally believe me."

Gokudera couldn't help but smile affectionately at that statement. He leaned over and pecked Yamamoto on the cheek. "I'll wait and see what you've got, Mr Baseball Ace."

Yamamoto flashed him a bright smile, just as bright as how Gokudera remembered it the very first time he saw it – that day he woke up in the house of a stranger, a baseball-idiot he never knew would change his life.

"Better watch out for the home run, Gokudera Hayato."

One Year Later, at Namimori High School

"Did you hear the news about Hibari-sama? I heard he's going to be studying in Italy for university!"

"Wow, that's so cool! I can't believe we won't be seeing him around anymore. The prefect team just wouldn't be the same! One hot eye-candy down, boo."

"Did you see him after the graduation ceremony, though? Someone told me Hibari-sama gave away his second button – you know, the one that's closest to the heart?"

"Really? Oh, I'm so jealous of the lucky girl who got that button! I wonder who it is..."

"Do you think she might be going to Italy too? Oh wait! Talking about Italy, did you know that Dino-sensei is also retiring this year? He's going back to Italy too."

"Wahh, why is all the hot men going to Italy? Maybe we should go too!"

"We totally should! Right? Maybe after we graduate..."

The chatter of the Namimori High School girls came through the window of the nurse's office as they walked by. A pale hand reached up from the bed next to the window to shut it, effectively blocking out all of the noise.

"Hibari-sama this, Hibari-sama that," Gokudera imitated the girls' high-pitched voices, rolled his eyes, before dropping himself back down onto the bed. "If only they knew their precious Hibari-sama is actually in a full-time gay relationship with a very homosexual Italian mafia boss. Maybe I should drop a hint, heh..."

Yamamoto laughed, "Don't be mean, Hayato. You'll crush their fantasies."

"That's the best part, though!" Gokudera grinned, rolling closer towards Yamamoto, "Imagine their faces when they find out. Oh, all the eyeliner and mascara that'll melt down their cheeks – it'll be hilarious!"

"You're evil, Hayato," Yamamoto said affectionately, pinching Gokudera's cheek, "Pure evil."

"Aha! Too bad for you, you chose to date a demon – I was the Smoking Bomb of Dynamite, didn't you know?"

"Still clinging onto to the old title, I see."

"Humour me. I do miss the old red scarf and all," Gokudera shrugged.

It had been a whole complete year since the Dynamites broke up – after the big attack from Varia at Lancia's house, Lancia decided that it was too dangerous for all of them to keep on fighting a war that they knew they would eventually lose. The casualties from that attack was not light, and Lancia cared too much about his gang members to let them suffer just for the sake of his own pride. Of course, the old gang still had frequent reunions and meet-ups, but they were no longer involved in violence or colour gang warfare, and they no longer wore their scarfs.

"It seems like so long ago since I last went on a group ride with the gang – man, time sure sped by. Can you believe we'll be Seniors next year? Last year of high school already, huh."

"I'm sure the kouhais will be even more crazy about you now that all the senpais have graduated," Yamamoto teased. "Gokudera-senpai is so popular, what with his rebellious look and all."

"Shut up," Gokudera stuck out his tongue, "And speak for yourself, Yamamoto-senpai. Don't think I didn't notice all those girls coming to give you their perfume-scented cards and perfectly heart-shaped cookies after your last match."

"You saw? But they were genuine baseball fans."

"Oh, please, don't tell me you honestly believe that entire crowd of girls were into baseball?"

Yamamoto blinked, "Baseball's a fun sport, why not?"

"Riiight. How could I forget. You're a complete baseball-idiot, even after all this time." Gokudera sighed.

"I was kidding," Yamamoto laughed, "I gave the cookies away to my kouhais in the team anyway."

"Why? There was no need. Go ahead and eat them all, I'm not gonna be jealous over something so petty," Gokudera said – although the twitch in his eyebrow said otherwise.

Yamamoto knew it all too well, continuing to tease his lover. "Well, if you say so, maybe next time I'll eat them. They did look pretty delicious after all."

"Huh, don't say I didn't warn you when you get all obese and shit," Gokudera huffed.

Yamamoto chuckled and pulled his lover into his arms, "Kidding, kidding. I don't need anyone else's cookies but yours, ne?"

"Shut up. They were horrible. Bianchi's zero- no, negative – talent in cooking definitely runs in the blood..."

"I thought they were alright," Yamamoto shrugged.

"They were burnt! Completely burnt! If I didn't stop you from eating them you'd probably get cancer. Or food poisoning, Bianchi's style," Gokudera groaned.

Yamamoto laughed, then kissed the frown off of Gokudera's lips, "When is she expecting you home, by the way?"

After the whole incident with Takumi last year, Bianchi decided to move back to Namimori with her boyfriend – Romeo, now-fiancee – to sort out getting Gokudera Chisato into rehabilitation. After their father was out of town, Gokudera Hayato then moved into his sister's flat and had lived there since.

"Mm, whenever. I told her I might be staying over at yours tonight," Gokudera pecked Yamamoto's lips back, feeling like the last one wasn't enough.

"Oh, really now," Yamamoto smiled slyly, "So you're saying we have all night?"

Gokudera smirked, a sparkle in those emerald eyes, "...why wait until night? After all, Dino had been so gracious to give us this room all to ourselves – what with all these different beds, all these curtains, not to mention the unlimited supply of condoms and lubrication..."

Yamamoto's face split into an all-out grin with that,"I like your style, Smoking Bomb."

The curtains were drawn shut after that, enclosing the two of them into their very own private space. The late evening sun shone through the white curtains and gave the area a warm, orange glow that made everything look almost dreamy.

Gokudera watched as Yamamoto stripped off his shirt, appreciating those toned muscles that became even more defined with age and training. His skin was freshly tanned from the recent baseball tournament, and he had grown quite a bit taller in the past year. Before Yamamoto could take off his trousers, Gokudera reached out and hooked his fingers into Yamamoto's waistline, pulling his lover towards him and the bed.

"Hm? What are you up to, Hayato?" Yamamoto stood in front of Gokudera and smiled down at him.

"Nothing, nothing," Gokudera's hands casually tugged down Yamamoto's pants, revealing his pelvic bone and a clear separation between darkened and pale skin, "Oh, look here. You have a tan line."

"Yeah, from training – coach got us swimming a lot," Yamamoto's hand went to toy around with Gokudera's hair before undoing his shirt buttons.

Gokudera ran his fingertip down the tan line slowly before he leant in to give the area a quick nip. "Does that hurt?" Gokudera looked up at Yamamoto, and when he saw the baseball player shake his head, he leaned over and nipped the skin again, harder this time – like a little kitty who's teeth was just developing. Those emerald eyes looked back up at him again – playful, teasing, "What about that?"

Yamamoto chuckled amiably, "Come here, you."

Gokudera laughed when Yamamoto lifted him right off the bed and threw him onto his back, Yamamoto's body quickly following down as his lips captured Gokudera's and swallowed his laughter in a deep kiss. Gokudera sighed contently, wrapping his arms around Yamamoto's neck – one hand running down the planes of his back, the other sifting through his soft, short hair.

Yamamoto finished unbuttoning Gokudera's shirt and peeled it off him, just as one of Gokudera's hands trailed right down to his butt and gave it a playful squeeze. Yamamoto groaned. Gokudera had always known what to do to turn him on in each moment – playful and teasing touches, coy glances as he hid away, teases of tongue in a kiss, aggressive nails raking down his back, the softest kiss on his forehead... every time, it was as though Gokudera knew exactly what Yamamoto wanted.

Pale, slim fingers reached down to unzip Yamamoto's pants, those same fingers giving just a tease of a stroke over Yamamoto's hardening member – enough to leave Yamamoto desperate for more. Yamamoto gave Gokudera's lips a few more pecks before he retreated to take off the remainders of his clothes. As he did, he slid his hands down between his legs to give his half-hard cock a few tugs.

"Hey, hey," Gokudera pulled Yamamoto's hand away – he was also completely naked, now, too. "No starting the fun without me."

"There isn't any of it without you," Yamamoto grinned, pulling Gokudera towards him for another kiss, his hands running down Gokudera's arms.

"How corny," Gokudera smirked, now sitting down in Yamamoto's lap, his legs on each side of Yamamoto's body – their erections just almost, almost touching, but not quite there. Yamamoto exhaled deeply, wanting to just crush their bodies together right there and then. But he never did – he always, always allowed Gokudera to set the pace. And Gokudera knew it, too. Which was why, when Gokudera glanced up at Yamamoto beneath his eyelashes, the sneaky look in his eyes immediately let Yamamoto know that the distance set between their bodies was very intentional.

"You're such a tease," Yamamoto growled, using all the strength he had to restrain himself from flipping Gokudera onto his back and completely ravaging him.

"Easy now," Gokudera murmured, smiling, all too slowly leaning in to kiss Yamamoto's lips, moving his lips just as slowly. His arms circled Yamamoto's back, one hand massaging the back of Yamamoto's neck – exactly the way he liked it.

Yamamoto moaned, his hands sliding up Gokudera's creamy thighs. One hand reached right up to his chest before he used the pad of his thumb to play with Gokudera's nipple.

Gokudera shuddered and sighed into the kiss, "Mmm-"

Yamamoto covered one nipple with his mouth, and Gokudera positively arched into him.

"Mm-!" Gokudera's hand clutched Yamamoto's hair, "Wait, t-too much-"

Yamamoto grazed his teeth on Gokudera's nipple. Gokudera's head lolled back in a silent scream, his body moving on its own and grinding their erections together. Electricity shot through them both. Yamamoto groaned at the much-needed friction, and rotated his hips to grind against Gokudera once more.

"Ah-!" Gokudera gasped, clutching Yamamoto's back, "Takeshi..."

"More?" Yamamoto whispered hotly against Gokudera's ear.

"Yeah- fuck, yes," Gokudera swore as Yamamoto rocked against him again, then again, their bodies moving in synch, their heated cocks trapped between them, dripping with pre-cum and sliding against one another. The temperature between them was rising gradually but steadily, sweat beginning to glisten both of their skin. Gokudera pants became heavier as Yamamoto continued to thrust against him, a little faster and a little harder each time, driving Gokudera absolutely insane with lust. His pale arm clung to Yamamoto's neck as the baseball player sucked on his neck, leaving marks to last a week, and only making the flames that was burning within Gokudera rise.

Yamamoto reached one hand to the side-table and fumbled for the bottle of lube. Once he found is, he squeezed a generous amount onto his fingers and slid them behind Gokudera.

"Hah-" Gokudera jolted at the sudden coolness of the gel that contrasted with his burning skin. Yamamoto's fingertips were circling his entrance now, Yamamoto licking his lips.

"Hayato...?" Yamamoto looked into Gokudera's hazy green eyes for permission. Gokudera adored that about him. Yamamoto always made sure to check with Gokudera every step of the way to ensure that the silvernette was comfortable – even when Yamamoto himself could barely contain his desire. No matter how absorbed in lust Yamamoto was, Gokudera knew that if he said the word, Yamamoto would stop everything in a heartbeat. He had done so a few times in the past, especially the first few times they got physical. Being a man himself, Gokudera could understand exactly how difficult that was – he sure as hell would not be able to stop if roles were reversed in those moments.

Without hesitation this time, Gokudera nodded.

Yamamoto's finger slipped into him and Gokudera closed his eyes. Another finger followed shortly after, and Gokudera tensed reflexively, but relaxed shortly after, allowing Yamamoto to scissor his entrance and stretch him.

"Tell me if it hurts," Yamamoto's voice was low, a sound deep from within his throat. Gokudera knew that meant Yamamoto was fully aroused. The tightness and the heat of Gokudera's body around Yamamoto's fingers always had that effect on him – the baseball player only had to imagine his cock being buried deep within that heat and, already, he would be leaking.

"It's fine," Gokudera whispered, kissing him full on the lips. Yamamoto bit his lips back, and sucked on the tip of his tongue. Yamamoto had always been a very good kisser – erotic, with that hint of aggression that Gokudera needed. Gokudera moaned, his passion heightened, and all of a sudden, fingers alone were not enough for Gokudera's desire anymore. "Hurry- I want you..."

"Mngh," Yamamoto growled hungrily, slipping the third finger into Gokudera – the silvernette barely noticed, arching his back desperately for Yamamoto. He whimpered when Yamamoto only continued to stretch him further – it wasn't what he wanted. Yamamoto kissed his cheek, working his fingers as efficiently as he could, "Just a bit more, Hayato."

"I want you right now," Gokudera leaned back to look into Yamamoto's eyes, his emerald eyes brimming with tears, "I need you inside..."

Oh god, Hayato, don't do this to me... Yamamoto bit down on Gokudera's neck, wanting to throw Gokudera on the bed and completely destroy him with his lust, suffocate him with desire. But his self-restraint was hard as steel, keeping him from hurting his lover.

"Takeshi-" Gokudera had tears running down his face now, his body trembling from the pure need to feel Yamamoto within him. "Hurry..."

Gokudera was finally ready. Yamamoto quickly removed his fingers, causing Gokudera to mewl from the sudden feeling of emptiness. Then, with one hand on his cock and another around Gokudera's waist, he guided Gokudera onto him.

"Nngh-" Gokudera whimpered at the intrusion – Yamamoto was so much bigger and so much hotter than his fingers, and as Gokudera slid down further and further, it felt as though he was never going to reach the hilt. It didn't hurt him, as Yamamoto had prepared him so well, but the pressure and the sensation of being filled up so completely still overwhelmed Gokudera every time.

"You okay?" Yamamoto breathed unsteadily, his heated breath blowing down the nape of Gokudera's neck as he held him closer to his chest. "I'm all the way in."

"Mm-" Gokudera could feel Yamamoto pulsing inside of him, and without any control, his own body clenched back, as though it wanted to swallow Yamamoto in deeper.

"Fuck, Hayato-" Yamamoto groaned, dark chocolate eyes completely glazed over with lust. "...can you move?"

Gokudera attempted to, but found no strength in his thighs. All energy had drained from him when Yamamoto entered him – he barely had enough power left in his arms to hang on. Body quivering like a leaf, Gokudera shook his head, "...can't."

"Don't worry about it," Yamamoto murmured, sliding his hands down to grip Gokudera's hips tight, and then, without warning, he began thrusting up into Gokudera – hitting that bundle of nerves right on from the very first thrust.

Gokudera felt like he was about to shatter into a million pieces as pleasure exploded in him everywhere – and it really was everywhere, Gokudera absolutely could not pin-point a spot – Yamamoto had sent hot white sparks through every fibre of his nerves, very damn near frying them every time he hit that special spot within Gokudera.

Almost like the sounds came from a distant place, Gokudera could hear voices moaning and groaning and panting and screaming, but he could not work out whether it was Yamamoto's or his own or even both of them. All that was apparent to him was the intense force of Yamamoto's thrusts and how it was making him feel. He didn't know how long they had been going at it, he couldn't comprehend anything...

"Nngh- Hayato, I'm gonna come-" Yamamoto's low voice was suddenly beside his ear and resonated within him, bringing him back to the present.

Gokudera nodded, blindly clinging to him, too far gone in euphoria to give a proper reply. Yamamoto turned Gokudera's face towards him and kissed him deeply, trapping all of his moans as he thrust faster and harder, and harder, and faster, and faster and faster-

"Mngh-!" Yamamoto spilled into him, hot shoots of liquid deep inside of Gokudera.

Gokudera's body immediately clenched up as though it would never let Yamamoto go, his muscles tight and tense with passion. He remained like that for a few devastating seconds where his mind went completely white and he could neither feel or see or think – then all of a sudden, his muscles let go all at once and Gokudera threw his head back, gasping, arching his back like a perfectly pulled bow. "Agh-!"


Both Gokudera and Yamamoto were panting harshly afterwards, almost like they had been kept underwater and were finally allowed to take their breaths and gasps of air. Gokudera had collapsed against Yamamoto, completely out of energy as he allowed Yamamoto to lift him off himself. White liquid dribbled out of Gokudera's entrance and down his thighs, and Gokudera shuddered pleasantly at the sensation. Yamamoto then pulled Gokudera to lie down with him, Gokudera lying on top of Yamamoto's body, his head resting on Yamamoto's chest.

When Gokudera had finally caught his breath back, he rolled off Yamamoto and onto his back beside him, letting out a deep, long sigh. "That was... awesome."

"Mm-hm," Yamamoto agreed, rolling onto his side to face Gokudera.

Gokudera then raised a hand, grinning tiredly. "High-five?"

Yamamoto slapped his own hand against it – laughing even though he was almost too exhausted to do so. "High-five, indeed."

Their hands didn't leave each other after the high-five. Instead, their fingers naturally intertwined. Yamamoto pulled Gokudera's hand towards his lips and kissed the back of his palm. Dark chocolate eyes flitted over to look into Gokudera's bright green emeralds – a little less broken every day – and taking in the way Gokudera's cheeks were still flushed with his lips still kiss-swollen.

So beautiful... Yamamoto was never any less enchanted by Gokudera – even after all this time. He leaned in to peck Gokudera's parted lips once more.

"I love you, Gokudera Hayato," Yamamoto whispered with a smile.

Gokudera's warmed with those words and he smiled softly back at Yamamoto, reaching out his free hand to rest against Yamamoto's cheek. "I love you, too, baseball-idiot..."

And as Yamamoto pulled his pale, scarred body into a warm, tangled embrace, Gokudera had an epiphany. And he didn't know when it had happened, or even how, or what had happened to change him – but in that one beautiful, perfectly imperfect moment – with his muscles still aching and with Yamamoto falling asleep before Gokudera could even tell him – Gokudera had realised it...

"...and I believe you."

The End (not quite...) - Edit: ACTUAL The End.

A/N: Um... hi guys. Remember me? *sheepish smile* So... life happened, and what with the whole going to university and life as a medical school student thing, I've regretfully left this fic to hang for so long... I don't know how to apologize enough, guys, so sorry to keep you hanging – on a cliffhanger as well! I know, I know, I'm such a horrible person, feel free to tell me off how you like... But on the bright side, I'd promised to never not finish my fics, and I'm sticking to it! :D

If you're still here and haven't given up on me – THANK YOU. I don't know why I deserve you guys, but I'm glad that you're here nonetheless! This chapter is especially written for Phoenix of Starlight's birthday – the most adorable reader who never gave up on me for the whole YEAR that I've disappeared. Thank you, darling, much love! :)

Watch out for the EPILOGUE – containing life of these wonderful characters TYL in the Nami High universe, including 8059, D18, B26, XS, 10069, KenChiku, and possibly even more! – which will be up within a week or two. Promise! Nope, I won't disappear again – this is for real! :)

Again, thank you guys if you're still here reading this. I appreciate you guys so much! xx

EDIT 08/2014: I broke my promise, I'm sorry! D: My writing fire just somehow /died/ with KHR and I just can't bring myself to write an epilogue good enough to satisfy me for all the work I put into this fic. Thus, I think it is better to leave the fic off at this point. I /really/ tried to write a good epilogue for this – but I made it halfway through and just hated the whole thing and it'll just feel /wrong/ to put something so half-assed as the finale for this fic. I'm really sorry if this makes you guys feel like there's not enough closure, but I believe I'd rather leave this fic with this ending, which I like, than at an epilogue which I despise. I hope you all understand. I've been holding back from writing other fics for other fandoms because I really wanted to finish Nami High first, but then realised I never will, and that this is holding me back from writing for other fandoms, for example, Kuroko no Basket – which I am reallly excited for. So, really, GOMENASAI ;u;.

THANK YOU again for reading this, much love for all of my readers and ALL the support and love you gave to Nami High. I'm so grateful and appreciative of you all! Hopefully we may meet again when I start writing fics for other fandoms!

Xx Melonnaise.