And Then We Kiss
Chapter Seven

I found Shizuka in her sitting room with her tea and a small cake, while she read over something that made her hands shake. I wasn't sure what it was, but she put it down before I could get the chance to read it. She could hear me as I stalked silently across the room and it had been something that I hadn't anticipated as roiled with focus and energy as I was. Before I could get a chance to speak, she'd forced a sandwhch into my hands and told me to sit, pouring me a cup of tea. I was taken aback by all this, closed my mouth and said nothing despite the silence of the room as Shizuka lifted her teacup to her mouth and sipped gently. After a moment she replaced the cup and saucer on the round table at her side and turned to look up at me intensely. "Zero, I know what you're thinking. No, I can't allow it."

"Yes, you can. Mistress Shizu—"

"If Kaname ever catches you, we'll all be killed. You realize that, right?" She never broke eye contact and the emotion made me tense up. What was wrong? Whatever was in this letter? I looked down at it, and her eyes followed mine. I knew she knew what I was thinking, and she took the letter, casting it into the fire. "It was nothing. None of your business. Now... How do you plan on retrieving Ichiru and running away with him?"

What an odd question... "You have the key, right? I need it. I'll just take Ichiru and go, right now while Kaname's asleep."

"I don't have it."

My heart stopped for an instant, and I just stared at her, dumbfounded. "What do you mean you don't have it?" There was something roiling inside me and I stood abruptly, slamming my hands on the table. "This is my brother's life in danger, and you don't have the key?" Shizuka just stared at me with an even gaze, lifted her teacup to her lips and sipped quietly, setting the cup and saucer back down noiselessly after what seemed like eternity. Didn't she understand the urgency here? Didn't she realize that if I didn't take Ichiru away tonight... I would never have another chance? "Please, Mistress... I want you to come with us."

"Tell me, Zero. That's such a lovely rose; who might it be for?"

I stared at the flower whose stem was being crushed by my shaking fist and I growled. She was changing the subject; it obviously wasn't reaching her brain at all. "It doesn't matter! What about—"

"Forget about it Zero, because it will never work. You're better off staying the way things are now. Ichiru may be a little worse for wear up there, and Kaname is perhaps a little hard on him, but he's safe. You're safe. You need to stop thinking about others and starting thinking about yourself again. After all," She lifted the teacup to her lips one more time. "What was it...? Ah. Dear Hanabusa. You forced him to take the fall for you; you told Kaname he was the one that... oh, whatever it was. You're the one who did it, aren't you, Zero?"

I was struck by this. "What! Sure I hated him, but I would never..." No... wait... There was something... forming in my memory. Setting up Aidou so that Kaname would... so that Kaname would kill him. But that didn't feel like something I would do even if I had hated Aidou with my entire being, so I was left to stand there just... puzzling away. Why would I do something like that? Jealousy? Spite? Something seemed out of place here, but I wasn't quite sure what, and I really didn't have time to think about it. I had to find out how to get Ichiru out of here, even if Shizuka wouldn't come with me. I had to do something. "Okay... maybe I did, but... Forget about that. Tell me where to find the key."

Her lips turned up in a small smile. "Zero, where would you find anything you need or want in this manor?"

Kaname's room.

I tore out of the room at a fast walk, trying not to look too suspicious as I watched the day fade away beyond the window panes, and I made my way to Kaname's suite, up through the back, and into his bed chamber where he lay half naked in his bed with the blackout curtains drawn. I had to pause to stare at him while my heart pounded — he lay on his back, the back of his hand placed delicately on his forehead and his full lips so slightly parted. I could hear his breath, soft and even, and I knew that he wouldn't be awakening for at least a half hour at this rate. When he turned on his side, he was preparing to wake, and from there he would turn over on his stomach in most cases. There was the occassion I'd seen him wake up on his side, but he was usually unconciously particular about how he slept and how he woke up. He was predictable when he slept, and I loved that; it meant that I knew exactly how much time I had before I had to leave the room. Going through his things for that key wouldn't take a half hour at all; I knew where he kept everything that he didn't want anyone finding. And eventually I came down to the last place in the room, and felt a hand on my shoulder. I knew the feeling of that hand, and it made my blood run cold.

"Zero, what are you looking for?" Something tapped against my back and I turned to see that the key was tied to Kaname's wrist. Blood red eyes met my pale face and then the drawer I'd been looking through where he kept a stash of aromatic massage oils, and even though the look on my face purely said I was up to something, he laughed and then leaned in to kiss me. "I'm sorry, did I ruin the surprise? I'll go back to bed and wait." Everything in my body screamed as he retreated and I wanted to collapse, but he turned in the doorway and looked back at me. "That is... unless you don't want to wait."

I couldn't say anything, couldn't move, but I shook my head. I'd meant that I didn't want it at all because I wanted the key on his wrist... not that I was about to tell him so. But he took that response as my impatience, and smirked, coming back to stand infront of me, leaning over to nip along my jaw and make his way to my ear. "My, Zero... so forward tonight. Such a welcome change." He slipped his hands under my sweater, running ice cold hands up my hot torso and I shivered under the touch, naturally eliciting reactions I hadn't been counting on. My eyebrows came together, I closed my eyes. I'd messed up. I'd royally fucked up and now I wouldn't have the chance to save Ichiru. And there was the key, brushing back and forth against my skin to remind me of this. What a failure I was. Not that Kaname knew that... It was the first time I was thankful that we were sans Blood Bond because the last thing I needed right now was for Kaname to know what I was thinking about. Or that some part of me wanted his hands to go lower. I leaned back against the chest of drawers, looking down at the stash of oils and Kaname's eyes followed mine; he reached in for one of the small bottles, pulling out one that was Dogwood and Chamomile scented at random. My breath hitched in my throat — it was my favourite next to the sweet spice of the Vanilla Cinnimon Peppermint, and the tart Rosehip and Lemongrass. I heard the cap pop off, his right hand joined his left and before I knew it, the oil was on my skin being warmed by my body. Kaname watched as I swallowed hard, leaned back as far as I could and then sighed involuntarily. He pulled my shirt up over my head and his teeth found my collarbone where he bit down without breaking the skin, nibbling his way up my neck and I shivered; his hands worked my body below, one of them pausing to push the button on my pants from its catch and pull the zipper down. He pushed my pants off, I complied as I knew I should by stepping out of them, but I didn't want to be here now... Of course, my member betrayed that thought by already being halfway to hardness.

Before I knew it, his hands had travelled back up my sides and his thumbs were brushing over my nipples, back and forth, rolling them, sending tingles down my spine and directly to my groin. He scraped his teeth along the shell of my ear, then flicked his tongue out to toy with my earlobe, eventually sucking it into his mouth, nibbling on it playfully, eliciting a soft moan, and it made him smirk. One hand moved down to stroke and fondle my cock, his mouth taking its place at my chest and everything he did made my body feel like it was on fire. I was so close to the edge that I could taste it, and I began to whimper. "Ka...kaname... Slow down..." His grip tightened. He was on his knees. I moaned in the anticipation of the rare sensation — his lips and tongue on my organ, a hot, wet, tightness that I didn't often have the pleasure of feeling — but instead he went to the wound on my side and went to work nursing it, licking and nibbling the slightly reddened area. I moaned out loudly, my knees buckling, and the only thing that held me up was that chest of drawers. So much for the massage because clearly Kaname had other ideas. He listened to the sounds I made, and I could tell that they were turning him on because he allowed a soft moan of his own to escape, and he was salivating by the time he'd licked, sucked, and bitten his way back to my cock, leaving a trail of sparks in his wake. I gasped out once again as he sucked on the base, his fangs scraping along the sensitive flesh, and I was panting by the time he'd trailed his tongue back up to the tip, running it along the slit to gather all the precum that had begun to leak out.

Catching my eyes as my cheeks flushed an unattractive red brought on by the denial, Kaname worked his way back up my body to kiss me, prying my mouth open with his to gain entrance rather effectively. He wanted me to taste myself. I wasn't bothered by this, it had happened a few times before, and besides that one of Kaname's biggest turn-ons was watching me trail my fingers through the sticky mess left behind afterward, sucking each digit off slowly. After that he was usually ready for round two... or three... or four... I hoped that wasn't going to be what this was. A marathon of intense pleasure, spanning until both of us were completely spent.

After a moment, Kaname pulled away from me, kissed the corner of my mouth, and then lead me back to the bed chamber, tugging me along by my elbow. "I don't know what you were looking for, Zero, but you're being rather suspicious." I didn't see how, but I knew I'd better not say anything, or risk punishment. Reaching the bedside, I was pushed down on my back and Kaname climbed on top of me, pressing our lips briefly. "I know you were up to see Ichiru, Zero. Don't try to hide it."

My eye dropped—why did they drop like that?—and Kaname caught this. "He's my brother."

"You lied to me." On cue, my whole body went cold. Trapped underneath Kaname like this, no escape, and it had come back on me again. I should've known better by then, but I guess my mind was so scattered that it just... didn't occur to me that Kaname was the smarter and more powerful one. It's kind of funny to think that... I had almost never seen Kaname as any different from me, even with all the obvious differences. I had always felt equal to him... He'd always made me feel equal to him. "If you're unhappy, tell me so, Zero. It hurts me that you don't tell me things."

I didn't know what to tell him, but the sigh that escaped without my permission was enough. Kaname kissed me gently, my forehead, my lips, my neck... He took the sensitive flesh there and sucked gently, blowing cool air over it after a moment of warming the spot. The area tingled lightly, and Kaname pulled back just far enough to watch my eyes. "Do you like it?"

"What a stupid question," I retorted, and it made Kaname frown. He wasn't going to repeat himself, but he wasn't going to continue either, so I looked away, a dusting of pink on my pale white cheeks. "I like it."

He moved on from there, pushing my shirt up to brush his thumb over one of my nipples while he lavished affections on the other with his highly expert mouth. He kept going for a while, until a soft sound resonated within me. He pulled back, caught my eyes again and asked me, "Do you like it?"

I was a little irritated—I hadn't come here for one of Kaname's lectures or so he could make some convoluted point to me. But I answered anyway, "I like it."

He went back to what he was doing, his hand snaking down to that wound on my side. I instantly tensed, because I thought I knew what he was going to do. But the pain he brought just by tracing over it wasn't unpleasant, actually. His hands were like sparks on my skin and I let out a groan. I felt Kaname's words against my skin this time. "Do you like it?"

Before I could answer, he'd moved all the way down and took my head in his mouth, running his tongue over the highly sensitive flesh. Instead of being able to answer, I gasped and moaned out loud, the words that I'd wanted only him to hear: "I like it."

But this was Kaname, and when he had a point to make, he made it. All at once, his hand gripped down on my wound and he'd pulled his mouth away so there was nothing to balance out the intense stinging I was feeling. This time when I gasped and groaned, it was in pain. "Now tell me if you like it."

"Aaah, fuck! Kaname, stop! I don't fucking like it!" I was trying to wiggle myself out from under him, but he held me with one hand flat against my chest. After a moment he relented, sitting up completely and moving away.

"From now on, you'll remember that."

Somehow, Kaname managed to stay in the mood, and when he continued, he was much gentler, softer... It was so strange for him and I almost couldn't believe it. When he kissed me, it was deep and full of so much feeling... I kept thinking back to what Touga had said, about how happy Kaname was when I told him I loved him. I felt this incredible pang of guilt and leaving seemed like the wrong thing to do. But... as soon as Kaname had tired himself out once again, I still took the key from his wrist, covered him up and left, without even so much as a kiss on the forehead. Yes, I loved him dearly, but blood is thicker than water, and I wouldn't allow Kaname to hurt my brother any longer. That just wasn't the kind of person I was.