Title: If Only

Disclaimer: Katekyo Hitman Reborn! is not mine

Timeline: 11 years in the future of the canon universe but with some twist of alternative reality

Warnings: Angsty, bleak atmosphere with lots of flashbacks and heavy yaoi lemon involving multiple partners, dub-con and implied S & M

Credit: Thank you death scimitar & letmeupme for beta reading as well as byrdiesinging for her advice

Author's Notes: This fanfic uses British English (single quotation marks for normal speech and some different spellings)

The story is actually a sequel for Feats and Defeats and prequel for Raison d'être, but can be read as a standalone.


'I've fallen in love with you as many times as the numbers of stars in the sky.'

Mukuro did not know why Byakuran had mentioned that when he had infiltrated the Millefiore Base, after his disguise as Leonardo Lippi had been unravelled the year before. Nor had he suspected, at that time, that those words would haunt the rest of his tomorrows.

'In time, I want to be the one who closes your eyes to death.'

The Vongola Mist Guardian knew how little meaning the words held—words purportedly culled by the Millefiore leader to mislead a prisoner who would not bow before torture.

Curse him!

Mukuro—the current twenty-six years old Mukuro—groaned; his ejaculation finally spattered on the torso of the man beneath him. This man wore a mouth gag, a harness, a restraint and a pair of pegs on his nipples in addition to the various diagonal and horizontal black leather straps across his body. The man's eyes glinted with satisfaction. He had come three times this session, while he was inside Mukuro, but the client had not come even once before, not even with the extra attention from the flesh of two men sliding within.

Above Mukuro was a burly man, masked, with a slightly hairy chest. Dark, smooth leather straps clung tightly between his firm, full buttocks still pumping vigorously into his client's hole—the narrow well in which he had to squeeze and compete with his colleague below.

'Enough,' bade the client in an emotionless voice, ignoring the continuous caresses of the topping man's leather chaps against his bare thighs.

The prostitute above Mukuro obliged, withdrawing carefully, so as not to cause the client too much discomfort. Slowly, he got up to his feet, peeling the rubber from his manhood and tied it before flushing the bundle containing his load—twice in a row—in the toilet.

The one below Mukuro, too, then pulled his member out. As he began to remove the condom from his flesh, he heard his client say, 'Allow me.'

Much to the prostitute's delight, the client poured the liquid and smeared it onto his chest. Eagerly, the prostitute took off his mouth gag and approached Mukuro with an apparent intention to lick him, only to meet a cold refusal.

'That's enough for today. Your payment is on the table over there.' The client pointed at a corner of the hotel room.

With a dejected look upon his face, the prostitute licked his lip instead. 'Give us a call whenever you feel like hanging out together again.'

A non-committal smile was the client's only response as he turned on the television and settled himself in bed. It was as good excuse as any to reduce interaction when business was over.

The other prostitute had returned from the loo, fully clothed, and was now crouching on the floor, collecting the scattered whip, anal plug and anal beads—all of which were still moist from their usage during the foreplay. Plastic and leather left the floor with the softest rush of air, almost as invisible as Mukuro's already waning pleasure.

Some five minutes later, the door closed behind the two male prostitutes. Switching off the TV, Mukuro released his illusion form. Blond hair darkened to indigo. His skin grew more delicate in pallor. His height reduced by three and a half inches. His frame grew slimmer. The shape of his facial features rearranged themselves—less prominent forehead, higher cheekbones, smaller nose and thinner lips. These were all precautions he had set, for, despite his release, some members of the Vindice as well as a number of Mafiosi still wanted him dead or alive. Disallowing his true form to be admitted to the sight of any stranger, he always veiled himself with illusory disguises whenever outside the Vongola premise.

Still naked, Mukuro walked up to the fridge and poured himself a glass of water. The carpet under his bare feet muffled all sound. Even as the chilled liquid slid down his throat, however, his mind was preoccupied. The sensation of two men's engorged flesh inside him, threatening to tear him open from the inside with every friction, did entertain him to certain extent. It gave him fear, yes. It rubbed and even squeezed his prostate gland, yes. The raw physicality of the act reminded him of a fear he no longer felt. No matter how the prostitutes treated him, it could not induce the same exhilaration that Byakuran Millefiore had provided him.

If only you were here with me…

'I stand here, alone, smeared with another man's secretion. What are you going to do about it?' the heterochromatic-eyed man spoke, his fingers tracing the seminal fluid on his chest and stomach, feeling the lingering tingle of an absent touch.

The silence of the room gave him no reply.

'Won't you come here and claim me to be yours again?' The words slipped from between Mukuro's lips in a volume that was nearly as imperceptible as the air. The Vongola Mist Guardian stared at the empty space before him, looking for the faintest presence of a man who was not there.

Your passion for me, as false as it might be, was like that of burning fire. Why did you have to disappear from my life as easily as a snowflake vanishing in the ray of the sun?

Expressionless, Mukuro approached the sofa where his clothes lay in a heap. He reached for a stringed small cotton pouch from the inside the pocket of his trousers. The pouch looked no different from an omamori—a charm typically purchasable from Shinto shrines of which function varied from protection against accidents to good luck in the school exams. He had bought the omamori months ago, only to discard its content and keep the bag, the omamori bukuro. What was inside the omamori bukuro now was not a religious charm of any sort, but a strand of white hair.

Mukuro closed his eyes and kissed the hair—a single strand with so little substance and the sole reminder of a man who would not let him forget. Unseen by others, he had secured the hair from the battleground after Vongola Decimo's X-Burner incinerated Byakuran Millefiore's body.

If only I hadn't done so.

Mukuro had thought he had gone through all six paths to hell when he had trained himself with the Six Paths of Reincarnation techniques. He had not been cognisant that the seventh level of hell would be lying in wait for him in Byakuran's absence. It had all seemed perfectly harmless; yet, once he experienced it, the grief was both inescapable and irremediable. It clung and clung to him unrelentingly for the remaining years of his life, gnawing away at his soul.

He wished, fervently, for less time. Less time to ponder on the enigma that had taken his life, his every free moment and twisted it into a mockery of a lovelorn lover. Had their paths never crossed each other, he would have continued on in sweet ignorance, unknowing what havoc passion could wreak to one man. Living in a world without Byakuran Millefiore was equal to an ennui. An empty shell. An exanimation.

If only you and I hadn't been in the opposing sides…

When everybody else had rejoiced that the world had been saved when Tsuna had defeated Byakuran, Mukuro had not suspected that he could never be truly happy again. He could not sacrifice the entire parallel universes for a madman's ambition, so he did what he must: opposing Byakuran. As he had observed Byakuran's body disintegrate into ashes and then disappeared completely, he had assumed that he could get on with life. How naïve he had been!

No matter how much Mukuro repudiated it, no matter how well he hid himself, he could not escape from the memory of the days he spent with the white-haired man. He had denied Byakuran's love when they had been together, now that the amethyst-eyed man was gone, he sought for the scantiest scrap of affection from what had been the most dangerous man in the world.

Despicable creature! Even though you have ceased to exist in this world, this timeline, you still torment me from beyond the grave!

Even now, Mukuro was uncertain who or what Byakuran truly was. After the twenty-five-year-old Millefiore leader had perished within the X-Burner flame the year before, history had changed. On Mukuro's side, he no longer became a prisoner in the Vindice. Instead, he was officially released thanks to Daemon Spade's participation, though quite a considerable number of Mafiosi, whose friends or relatives had fallen in Mukuro's hands, refused to cease from hunting him down. Therefore, he, along with the Kokuyo Gang, had been on the run since the age of fifteen.

The same year, the Vongola agents had sighted Byakuran again in Italy. The supposedly fifteen-year-old boy had looked exactly the same as his twenty-five-year-old self. He was put in custody, handcuffed him at nearly all times, in order to ensure that he would not attempt to monopolise the entire parallel universes again. Nevertheless, not a single soul could tell how or why Byakuran Millefiore showed no signs of aging.

###

When both the fifteen-year-old Mukuro and Chrome were under Daemon Spade's control, Byakuran appeared once in the hospital to cure Yamamoto Takeshi who was in a coma from the attack of the Simon Famiglia. According to the Rain Guardian, Byakuran uttered 'save him', but at that time, the half-conscious Yamamoto did not have the strength to ask who the 'him' referred to.

Upon hearing this, Gokudera and Ryouhei, who were rarely of one voice in opinion, guessed that by 'him', Byakuran must mean Sawada Tsunayoshi. Vongola Decimo was the only opponent who had managed to triumph over Byakuran in all those parallel universes; it therefore must hurt Byakuran's pride if the one who defeated him were defeated by another—or so they assumed. Hibari held no opinion on the matter whereas Lambo was more interested in the upcoming dinner. Reborn, who did not fail to notice Mukuro looking away with clenched fists, changed the subject.

###

On his nineteenth autumn, Mukuro visited a beach on which, according to his research, Byakuran was a frequenter. He wore an illusory disguise so that others would perceive him to be a six-year-old girl. Two of the Kokuyo Gang members were with him, disguised with illusion as a couple in their early forties—the girl's parents—since it would be odd for a child to go to such a place alone. The rest was left in charge of guarding their hideout.

The beach was quiet at that time of the year; in fact, there were less than thirty visitors that afternoon. Signalling for his subordinates to swim in the sea, the what-seemed-to-be freckled little girl in a lavender swimsuit began building a sandcastle on the shore. She redid the castle quite a few times, waiting.

Finally, a black limousine arrived and parked nearby. From it, a white-haired man in a casual outfit stepped out, flanked by two heavily-built men in black suits. The Vongola guards stood next to the car, never taking their gaze from Byakuran, whom they temporarily permitted to enjoy the sea in the absence of the handcuffs so as not to alarm other visitors.

'Mister, come and help me finish this castle,' beckoned the hazel-haired little girl as the young man approached.

Byakuran looked at her in silence for a few seconds. As eyes of essonite met amethyst, she could sense the mild curiosity and hesitation in his eyes, but then he smiled and said, 'Sure.'

The voice was not one that would rival that of world-famous singers', but it was what the Mist Guardian had been longing to hear the most.

He filled her plastic bucket with seawater and then sat on the sand with her, smoothing the towers of the sandcastle. He sat with his back facing his guards, so that they could not read the movements of his lips. Keeping his volume low, he addressed her, 'Four years have passed since we last saw each other. How are you?'

The girl's breath hitched. Then, she focused on making windows, puncturing several places of the castle walls with her index finger, but she gave him a reply, 'Aren't you mistaking me for someone else, mister? We've never met before.'

'Not in this form, Mukuro-kun, but I've memorised your aura since you entered my life under Lippi's masquerade.'

Mukuro had never suspected that a name that meant 'corpse' or 'cadaver' could sound this beautiful just because it was emanated from Byakuran Millefiore's mouth.

The little girl punctured one window too hard and the wall of sand crumbled. 'Help me rebuild this?'

Won't you spend more time with me?

He gave her head a brief pat. 'I can't. It's time for me to go.'

Then the sea suspired in a long, draggy sigh. The water boiled white and mauve over the rocks; and when it went, sucking back again, the remnants of the sandcastle was gone.

'When can I see you again?'

The ageless man bit his inner lip. The attempt to restrain grief was reflected so conspicuously in his eyes that it hurt not only his own chest but also his speaking adversary's. When he delivered his answer, his voice was weak. '… You will never see me again in this life. My time in this world is almost up. But you will see me in the other parallel universes. I won't give up on you.'

Byakuran had left the world the moment Tsunayoshi's X-Burner set his body aflame. Both blessed and cursed with immortality, he had not died, but simply moved on to another parallel universes. Nonetheless, when Daemon Spade had manipulated the Simon Famiglia to invade the Vongola, Byakuran, in spite of his location in a different world, sensed that Mukuro had been in danger. Creating a substantial body of himself to watch over Mukuro in this world, he then let himself be captured by the Vongola minions and later healed the ambushed Yamamoto. This substitute, however, was no more than a tangible projection of his real being; it was not as powerful, nor could it last for long. This year was the maximum extent he could endure.

The sun bled into the sea, smearing the horizon with its blood-red rays. Rising from the sand, the white-haired man brushed the fawn grains from his denim trousers. His first step, however, was interrupted by a tug on the portion of his trousers covering his left calf.

Byakuran gazed at the chubby fingers that refused to let him go. Five blunt nails continued to claw the garment for barely more than five seconds, and then the small hand relented. The man walked back to the black limousine without once casting a backward glance at her.

After the last echoing roars of the car engine had evaporated, Mukuro's companions swam shoreward.

'The sun's setting. Let's go home,' offered Ken.

Chrome, seeing the little girl rubbing her face with the back of her hands, asked concernedly, 'What's the matter, Mukuro-sama?'

'Sand got into my eyes. You two go ahead; I'll be ready in a minute.'

Once upon a time, there was a sandcastle by the sea.

Once upon a time…

###

Until today, the Mukuro refused to believe that the short time he had spent in a devil's nest changed his life in its entirety. There was no way the Mist Guardian could forget the way the Millefiore leader had conducted a thorough investigation to every nook and cranny of his body with intoxicating touches, even though said body was a mere illusion. They had only met each other for a few days; and yet, despite everything, that was the best sex he had ever had in life. The disgrace was immense, but more so the pleasance.

What should I do to be at your side? What should I pay to remain as a part of your life?

Mukuro had initiated himself with carnal knowledge on his thirteenth summer. It had been pure curiosity, a taste of freedom from the inhumane treatment he used to receive back in the Estraneo research centre, along with the other unfortunate children. His partner back then had been an older woman, a prostitute. He tried partnering with a boy a few days later, and had enjoyed the act with both sexes ever since, if just to fend off boredom. He had never, to the best of his knowledge, lain with the same partner for more than once. Byakuran was his only exception and the exception had been non-consensual—on the surface, at least. There were many words and phrases which could describe their intimacy in bed, but deep down, Mukuro was cognisant that considering 'one-sided pleasure' as one of them was equal to asserting 'the earth is flat' in the twenty-first century.

###

Seducing Mukuro when he was still half-asleep was the only way for Byakuran to achieve an honest reaction. At first, the illusionist did not stir from his sleep when the Millefiore leader toyed with his midsection.

Thanks to Byakuran's insistence, Mukuro's sleep was interrupted by erotic moans. Oh, turn down the volume of the porn video, vulgar bastard!

But caresses kept coming on him. Leave me alone!

More strokes still. Damn! Why so persistent?

And so Mukuro was roused from his sleep. Much to his horror, the erotic moans had been coming from his own mouth.

He was lying naked in bed, still in the same room as the one the Millefiore leader had carried him the previous night. After the fight in which Mukuro was no longer disguised as Leonardo Lippi had ended with the worst defeat in his life, Byakuran had humiliated his injured body further by turning him from a prisoner of war into a prisoner of lust. Once he had conquered Mukuro's body, the triumphant had brought his war spoil to his bedchamber and had his way with his captive once more.

Now, through half-lidded, bleary eyes, Mukuro saw Byakuran's mouth envelope his manhood as the Millefiore leader's hands roamed his prisoner's thighs freely.

'Ah, you're awake at last, Mukuro-kun,' greeted the equally naked Byakuran, eyes gleaming with amusement—a look that was enough to devour.

At that time, Mukuro felt a great disgust for himself. During the short interval when Byakuran was speaking, he withdrew his mouth from Mukuro's genital and the indigo-haired illusionist secretly acknowledged the dislike he felt at the absence of the warmth that had been coating his flesh. How could he be this shameless when his lower body still bore the pain from the previous night's intercourse?

'Fu fu fu fu. What have we got here? Are you actually enjoying my ministrations that your mouth pouts this much when I cease?' chuckled the white-haired man.

If only my body were obedient to my will…

Both wrists tied onto the bedhead, Mukuro had no other choice but to kick Byakuran. The smirking man caught his foot nevertheless. The captive aimed to kick with his other foot. However, the amorous torturer caught the other foot too, and then proceeded to caress its heel and kiss its toes, swirling his tongue. One by one. Slowly. Seductively.

The kisses turned into an exploration of Mukuro's creamy skin, going up to the captive's tender thigh. Byakuran had adjusted his recumbent position into a kneeling one, so his mouth would reach the apex of the thigh soon—Mukuro knew that—but he did nothing to stop the other man. A part of him, the so-called 'common sense', knew his attempt would be futile. Another part, the more secret desire in the deeper abyss of his mind, however, simply let it be. Something about this man … this devil … intrigued him. It reached the depths of his soul where no other entity was ever allowed to enter. He closed his eyes as the battle within himself raged on.

However, when Byakuran reached Mukuro's groin, he did not wrap Mukuro's erection with his mouth again. Instead, Byakuran raised his arms so that both of Mukuro's ankles were elevated high in the air.

'Some claim that the leaning tower of Pisa is the most beautiful sight in the world; others favour the pyramids at Giza. However, I find the sight before me now most enthralling,' sneered the Millefiore leader.

Supported by his open arms were Mukuro's splayed legs, the captive's calves in vertical array with the captor's forearms. Between Mukuro's thighs, his manhood stood rigidly, with milk-white liquid threatening to spill from its tip. The captive's abdominal muscles moved with every breath, enhancing the contour of his shapely torso.

Byakuran smiled profoundly; even without him doing anything at present, Mukuro shivered.

Mukuro, on the contrary, clenched his jaw. For one who had assassinated numerous Mafiosi, the humiliation was grave enough to make him swear: Had his hands not been tied to the bed, he would have struck Byakuran with his bare fists.

With a cold, placid voice, the prisoner let himself be heard in the otherwise silent room. 'Pray tell, whatever are you waiting for?'

'Do you want me that bad, Mukuro-kun, hmm?' Byakuran's voice was the silkiest Mukuro had ever heard.

'Carry on the ordeal as quick as possible, will you?' Undeterred, the prisoner made his reply while immediately donning a mask of bravado. 'It sickens me to see you.'

'Ah, what harsh words coming from such beautiful face,' hummed the Millefiore leader. He obliged nevertheless.

One finger. One promiscuous finger, blunt and strong, initiated the entry.

'How does it feel—being unable to resist a man penetrating your body?'

'Ku fu fu fu fu. Is that all you've got?' Mukuro's lips were poised in a thin smirk, his voice thick with mockery.

'Fu fu fu fu fu.' Byakuran delegated his finger deeper, and then crooked it, as though attempting to hook Mukuro's inner walls with it. 'And here I was nice enough in trying to prepare you.'

'Do drop that bullshit. It's obvious you were simply looking for a reaction.'

'Ah, such foul language. But no, Mukuro-kun.' The amethyst-eyed man's other hand trailed his prisoner's jaw line. 'Why would I do that?'

'Nice try. Unfortunately, I'm not blind enough to realise you are trying to annoy me,' fleered Mukuro.

This time, Byakuran's face drew closer. Much, much too close until his lips hovered just above Mukuro's. 'And why would I even intend to annoy such smiting beauty?'

He ghosted his nose over the imaginary lines of his adversary's face, letting their breath intermingle in a quiet race.

One more finger. Another promiscuous finger joined in. It twisted and turned until its target's muscles yielded and the hole gaped wide enough for further exploration.

Although Mukuro's muscles tightened, no slightest twitch surfaced on his placidly still face. And yet, no matter how well he masked his gasps with absolute silence, no matter how proficient he concealed his body's craving with motionlessness, he could do nothing to control the feverish breath inside his mouth or the simper on his opponent's face when the seducer parted the captive's lips with his relentless fingers, for that reason.

Byakuran moved forward, guiding his bare erection into Mukuro. The aperture opened, closed, opened wider, and Byakuran slid in. He forced his way sternly inside until his prisoner's body accepted his obtrusive member. The captive's querulous orifice flattened out and disappeared.

The illusionist clenched as the rigidity of the heated flesh intruded his intimate tunnel. The curve of his buttock was tucked into his invader's groin, his hips melding with the man who claimed his body. His head sank the mattress underneath it. It was then that his conqueror, his jailer, his torturer, his foe laughed. That accursed white-haired monster fucking laughed.

Blood seethed within the prisoner. At that moment, there was nothing he desired more than to throw the man before him down to the pit of hell.

And yet, his murderous intent was immediately abated by simple touches. Too soon. Byakuran rubbed his knees, and although this did nothing to soothe the agony of the crude penetration, it calmed his nerves, silently beseeching for a delay. He could always vent his fury after the copulation had ended … WHAT?

Mukuro shuddered. Did Byakuran have the ability to control other people's mind? Was he controlling his prisoner now? Was that why the illusionist's body was starting to ache for completion?

The initial thrust was strong and gentle at the same time—thirsty with demand, yet strangely reassuring in a way. The captive couldn't help shivering, his muscles involuntarily clenching. He shut his eyes tight, but Byakuran kissed his one of his eyelids and in the next second, both of his pupils relaxed. This man, this demon's body was acting like a natural magnet to him; it melted his repulsion into nothing but surrender. Mukuro's body swallowed his invader's advancing flesh instead of struggling to repel it. In him, rose a desire to kill his foe. In him, too, rose a desire to kiss this foe.

As Byakuran's mouth fastened on Mukuro's clavicle, the heterochromatic eyes snapped open. Above, loomed a figure who seemed to marvel at every expression he made. That man, that demon, enjoyed his body too much. Far too much.

Mukuro opened his mouth to reproach Byakuran, but when his eyes locked with his capturer, the reluctance within him dissolved into desire. With the deepening of the penetration, the prisoner tipped his head back. The discomfort of his muscles stretching was nothing compared to the sheer sensation of being possessed by this white-haired demon. Some unknown power took him, claimed him, tamed him, embraced him, consumed his flesh, penetrated into the core of his soul and sealed his existence to its own without the prerequisite of any satanic litany. The world he had known was engulfed in his conqueror's being.

He writhed, as though begging to be absolved; yet, to a devil's ears, what good could it do? The demon moved until his length was buried to the hilt. Erotically. Unhesitatingly.

Before long, the prisoner's eyebrows furrowed, while his breathing became short and shallow. During the kissing of his neck and shoulders, Byakuran's hair tickled his nose. Mukuro gasped. He could not help it. His entire world narrowed to the titillation of the unconquerable presence inside him. This stranger somehow filled all the empty spaces of his soul, completing him in ways of which existence had been a stranger to him to date.

Feeling the Millefiore leader nibbling the shell of his ear, Mukuro muttered through gritted teeth, 'Stop treating me like your lover!'

'But you are my lover.'

'Ku fu fu fu. Just because you've screwed me a couple of times, you consider yourself to be my lover? A bit too confident, are we?'

'I know the parts of you that no one else does.'

The captive sneered. 'You think you know me.'

'I know you are sensitive when people compare your hairstyle with a pineapple. I know about the diminutive mole at the fold of your navel. I know you like dark French roast better than Celebian coffee beans. I know you hate mint flavour for shampoo. I know the spreading of either butter or jam on your toast would make you sigh with contentment, while having them both would make you groan with distaste. I know that when something bothered your mind, you opened and closed our cutlery drawer several times to rattle the knives. I know that during sex, when you come, you'd close your eyes only if your partner has ejaculated before you.'

Mukuro's breath hitched, the jeer vanishing from his face.

'It displeased you when I was clingy in public; and yet, when we were in bed, you let me whisper unto you words of love that only the night knew. You were my lover in our other lives in the parallel universes and I intend to become your lover in this life too.' The words swirled, making their way through Mukuro's eardrums and clung to his brain. The illusionist wondered if an aconite hidden amongst caviar would taste like this.

'Well, I don't.'

'Fu fu fu fu. I see. You'd rather be my whore then?'

With that, Byakuran's hips bucked hard—harder. Harder still. With every thrust, he carved his manhood into the prisoner's insides no less eagerly than a gold digger mining the land.

Ankles high in the air, flanking his captor's ears, Mukuro bit his lip so as not to let a single moan slip from his mouth. No, he would not honour his captor with the satisfaction from something akin to complaisance. How he loathed this man! How he loathed the one who took delight in his flustered cheeks! How he loathed the one who violated his body the way no man or woman had ever done! And yet, his legs betrayed him, opening wider, welcoming his invader's passion. The man's hips were undulating above him, every curve of his body was sculpted to perfection.

The smoothness of Byakuran's skin rivalled that of marble, bar one place. Mukuro could not see it now from his own and his captor's position, but he remembered seeing a large diagonal scar etched across the Millefiore leader's back while stripping the clothes out of his body the previous night. At this, Mukuro wondered what sort of opponent was strong enough to mar the Millefiore leader with such a cut. He did not suspect in the slightest that the white-haired man obtained that scar while saving Mukuro's life in another life in the parallel universes.

Byakuran went deeper inside his prisoner, slithered down his flesh and sank in nearly to the balls. Still, he did not press his weight against the man below him, rather, he held him in position so that he might enjoy the view of what the delectable, creamy skin could offer.

Legs crooked over Byakuran's shoulders, Mukuro was tormented between pride and pleasure. His enemy's shoulders pressed against his calves and with every movement, Byakuran's passion overflowed into him. His soles were facing the pristine white ceiling as though in a prayer, if not in an irrepressible desire to touch the sky. He should be wishing for this copulation, this … humiliation … to end, but he was not unaware that some parts of him wished otherwise. He found his arousal growing tenser and tenser as his foe fucked him. He was approaching his limit. He closed his eyes as the other man's presence clouded every bit of his sanity.

Why is his body heat giving me an unknown security?

The despicable man was pumping him voraciously now, breathing hard as he invaded his prisoner. Mukuro could feel his rear aperture gaping open with each withdrawal for a second or two it took before his conqueror jostled back into him. The bed rocked underneath their joint weight. The sound of their coupling was loud in the still air of the bedchamber.

If only the Millefiore leader had acted like a man frenzied by lust and nothing but lust, it would certainly have been easier to detest him. Instead, Byakuran reached for his prisoner's tied hands and hooked his fingers onto Mukuro's.

'My beloved.' An affectionate whisper twirled and fluttered around the captive's ear and, much against his will, Mukuro's cheeks blazed with a deeper shade of crimson. His captor's fingers then moved to caress him ever so gently, as if he had been a delicate piece of porcelain, and his body quivered in response.

Damn him, humiliating me with his lover-like treatment! Sex has been my pastime since I was thirteen; all these aren't supposed to have any considerable impact to me.

They aren't supposed to…

And yet…

'Ne, Mukuro-kun, it appears that, to the contrary of the depth of your animosity for me, your body hasn't forgotten my touches through the lapse of years.'

The prisoner glared at his captor with all the contempt he could muster. Much though he wanted to deny such a preposterous statement, truth was not on his side; biting his lip in frustration was the only thing he could do.

'Mukuro-kun,' the white-haired demon spoke again, 'you even said "yes" when I asked for your hand in marriage.'

'I recall no such thing.' The reply was cold, even for Mukuro's standard. How could he forgive himself for submitting to another man … even if the said proposal had taken place in another life?

Just before he was going to burst in release, Byakuran thrust so vehemently that he nearly picked Mukuro up off the mattress. The conqueror's passion was like a rolling wave that drew the captive seawards and deluged him into an unfathomable depth of heterochromatic pupils dilated. Time seemed to slow down when he felt his captor's liquid travel deep inside him. Then time slammed back into focus and his own orgasm hit, his sphincter tightening around the erupting erection.

'Ah!'

The gasp had escaped from his throat before he could prevent it. With other partners, he could manage self-control to go hand-in-hand with climax; yet, with this man, no such feat could be deemed possible.

The air choked him, filling him with the scent of Byakuran Millefiore. The scent of deadliest enemy. The scent of a man whom he detest, despise and loathed more than anything, and, at the same time, the one he wanted most.

He felt his cheeks burning again as he caught glimpse of his vanquisher, and hastily averted his gaze. Shame swept through the illusionist, followed by immeasurable rapture.

Then, his enemy pulled out and pushed back inside slowly, almost lovingly, as though enjoying Mukuro's private channel around his member more than fulfilling a need. In spite of the burning agony in his lower half, the illusionist was not entirely certain that he'd had enough.

Why does this detestable man make my every single cell quiver uncontrollably, even though this body is a mere tangible product of illusion?

With a groan, Byakuran released Mukuro's legs and collapsed on top of the captive's torso, slamming his heart against Mukuro's, their sweaty skins pressed against each other. Then he folded him into his arms, as if protecting the prisoner from the harms of the world.

This thing that keeps on beating … is it his heartbeat or mine?

If this goes on, I'll…

'Now that you're done, get off me!'

At this reproach, Byakuran gave him a sharp look. The conqueror's former expression, which had been blissful from the release, now turned grim. For a split second, Mukuro thought the man was going to hit him, but instead, the jailer spoke with determined calm and even jest in his tone, 'Ne, Mukuro-kun, your name can be written as "69", isn't it? Do you want to try that position in sex?'

'Ku fu fu fu fu. Only if you want me to dismember you,' replied the illusionist with a wide grin so as to bare his teeth.

'That will trouble me greatly,' his adversary jested, 'for how can I enter you that way? Oh, not that I complain about the way you do me in our other lives, though.'

'Will you drop that "other lives" delusion?'

A flicker of rage once again sparked in the jailer's eyes. This time, however, Byakuran no longer retorted, but crushed Mukuro's mouth with his own, the softness of his captive's lips beckoned him for more. The two heads twisted to the right then the left. They battled; one wanting to feast, the other denying it. Each time one attempted to shift away, the other drove deeper, bruising the reluctant lips. When the assaulted one fought back, the invader's teeth grazed on the lower lip, sucking its pliable, moist flesh with a low, feral growl. That brought an end to Mukuro's resistance. When the other man pushed deeply into his mouth, he let the tongue coil around his own. He made no endeavour to return the kiss nevertheless.

'At least this part of you loves it when I fill you up,' Byakuran slurred, his gaze ventured at Mukuro's semen-coated manhood when he removed himself from Mukuro's, a string of saliva trailing between them.

The indigo-haired man averted his gaze, wishing that he could deny that he had come from the mere penetration with no other assistance.

As Mukuro's head inclined to the side, Byakuran seized the opportunity to kiss the area between the captive's ear and side of the neck, whispering, 'Am I no good?'

'That just confirms how many prisoners you have turned into fuck-dolls,' huffed the tied prisoner.

The white-haired captor gazed at him even more intently than before. 'There's no one but you. Not one soul before you and not one soul after.'

'Oya, oya, is it for this purpose alone I have acquired the privilege of imprisonment in this chamber then?'

Albeit Mukuro said the words with his usual jesting expression, hatred blazed once more in his heart. His pride as a man did not deign such treatment. To a vanquished victim of battle, an enemy's special treatment was the gravest insult possible.

'Mukuro-kun,' the white-haired man touched his prisoner gently on the lip as he murmured words that liquefied the Mist Guardian's resentment, 'even if the entire parallel universes crumble into dust, I won't let you go. I've fallen in love with you as many times as the numbers of stars in the sky. In time, I want to be the one who closes your eyes to death.'

The prisoner had to struggle very, very hard not to gulp. Was this really Byakuran Millefiore—the same man who had terrorised the world and nearly killed him the night before? Mukuro knew that any of his followers adored him unconditionally and would willingly succumb to his embrace or even die for him should he ever ask. Yet, Byakuran Millefiore…

… Byakuran Millefiore was nothing of that sort. Mukuro could never see Byakuran in the same light as he saw Ken, Chikusa, Fran, M.M. or Chrome. When this man spoke those words, even though he suspected how little truth it contained, the illusionist could not repress the feeling that something inside his stomach was flipping. Nor did he suspect that this 'something' had a name for it: Elation.

Lies hide within the truth; truth hides within the lies—that is mist. What I feel now is no more than an illusion.

'Liar,' accused the indigo-haired, eyes refusing to meet his seducer. He was afraid lest his gaze met the shred of sorrow and … loneliness … in the demon's eyes—the poorly masked frayed emotion which even immortals had trouble to conceal.

Even so, there was nothing Mukuro could do to barricade his ears against the mellisonant bane of the devil's murmur. 'I've lived thousands of lives to find you.'

'Oh really?' the prisoner replied in a bored tone, not bothering to conceal the sarcasm in his voice. 'To what do I owe the honour?'

'You are my reason for living, the one thing I refuse to let go even if all else fails.'

Beneath the glare of the fluorescent lamp, Mukuro could see how Byakuran's lips were shivering as he spoke. The devil's eyes glittered, full of tears that would not fall. It was not a question of good acting or even supportive ambience; no manipulation of lighting and pose could have imparted the shade of veracity upon those features.

Mukuro's jaw clenched. What stupidity has possessed my mind! The thing called 'infatuation' isn't for me. Haven't I gone through hell while learning the Six Paths of Reincarnation techniques? I am the one who will destroy the Mafia world; I have no time to fool around with the so-called 'cure for the lonely soul'!

'Liar.' Mukuro said again, aware that this insinuation was addressed more to himself than to Byakuran. At this stage, nothing could maintain his sanity but denial; the other man's words and deeds pervaded him like alcohol that sweetly took soberness away from him.

All the things he has done to me … there's no guarantee that he wouldn't do them to others. Someone with his power can effortlessly break as many fuck toys as he wants.

'I adore you so much it hurts. What should I do to make you believe me?'

The prisoner recalled none of his effort to argue, his mind the merest fraction of a second, Mukuro had the urge to pat that sorrowful creature on the head, but then, he remembered that his hands were bound to the bed. Regretting his own emotional vulnerability, he averted his gaze from Byakuran.

However, Byakuran shifted and made Mukuro lie on his flank before proceeding with a slow, tantalising palpation of the illusionist's body. The back of his ear. His neck. His shoulder. His chest. His abdomen. His pelvis.

Mukuro bit his lip, swallowing back his moan.

'Then … if I ask you to quit dominating the parallel universes, will you fulfil my wish?'

'That,' the snow-haired man remarked with a strenuous effort to repress his sigh, grief washing over his face, 'alas, is the one thing I cannot agree.'

'Didn't you claim that you loved me?'

'Mukuro-kun, without me being the god of the parallel universes, I cannot control fate despite my immortality and you will keep slipping away from my grasp.'

Mukuro rolled his eyes. Once he caught sight of the rope that bound his wrists to the bedhead, he snorted, 'I wonder why.'

The jailer chose not to respond to his prisoner's sarcastic comment. Without removing his hand from Mukuro's body, Byakuran kissed it from neck downwards. His lips weaved kisses down his captive's arm and across the shoulder. While reaching the indigo-haired man's armpit, he rubbed his nose into its valley.

'Stop it!'

'Fu fu fu. What's the matter? Getting ticklish there?'

Mukuro simply uttered, 'You disgust me.'

'I see. What about here, though?' With that, Byakuran attacked Mukuro's ribs with crawling fingers.

Mukuro said nothing this time, his face flushed with fervour. As much as his mouth refused to admit it, the goose pimples all over his body fully acknowledged Byakuran's statement. Above, his fists were clenching and unclenching. Below, his diaphragm was pronouncedly rising and falling. Even his dwindled manhood was rejuvenated. He did not wish to concede, but the passion glittering in his partner's eyes held him captive, writhing with a need he refused to name. Contradicting his pride, he parted his legs, offering himself.

Although Mukuro could not see Byakuran's expression from his position, he noticed the change in his captor's breathing as well as the nudging of the swelling flesh that hung between the Millefiore leader's thighs. It had regained its length and was snaking back through the prisoner's rear fissure—the seductive depression that invited him into its depths. The white-haired man elevated one of his partner's legs by its ankle, opening its owner for his access.

Resuming his kisses and caresses, he slurred, 'Your scent, your moan, your flesh, your blood, even your hatred … I want them all.'

When Byakuran pressed his flesh back into Mukuro's orifice, pushing his liquid lust as it went in, the illusionist quivered at the second penetration. More of an instinct than a will, the prisoner wiggled and clenched his arse as he squeezed the remaining essence from his claimer's body, submitting himself to the sensation of the jailer's fluid filling him again.

As he looked down, another tepid air imbued his cheeks. From this angle, the one place where their two bodies were connected was distinctly visible. The other man's flesh was going into his body, then out, then in again. With each thrust, the spheres that hung underneath the turgid length tapped against his own. His seducer's pelvic bone caressed the base of his spine, telling him an unspoken tale of infinite love.

No, I mustn't believe in him! Even though my hands are tied, I should at least be able to free myself from this illusion.

In a vain attempt to control the tremor inside his body, Mukuro bit down the white bed sheet. It was peculiar that with all this rushing heat, the illusionist felt that the world went still, so still and peaceful, that he became unaware of anything but the pulsing warmth that coursed in and out of him. Only this man, the man behind him, made what had been non-conveyable with words become possible. Only Byakuran Millefiore could turn what was supposed to be a salacious forced sex into a devoted lovemaking.

You're the most execrable of all men!

Before Mukuro fully realised it, his reluctant submission had evolved into eager demands. His body vulnerably wanted, yearned, pined for the other man's. His hips thrust back at Byakuran. His eyes were closed, not because he refused to see the other man, but to savour each sensation that the man filled him. His body, his mind, his soul—none of these belonged to him now; his amorous conqueror possessed them all.

They came in unison, their backs arched as a torrent of electrified passion coursed through them both. Byakuran lifted Mukuro by his rump, squeezing the voluptuous mounds of flesh. Mukuro's long streaks of indigo lashed upwards, some of them adhering to his sweaty face.

After he tenderly laid Mukuro on his back again, Byakuran gently swept back that dark mane from its owner's face. When he rested his sated body atop his partner and listened to the illusionist's heartbeats, Mukuro offered no resistance, only closing his eyes.

Amidst the tangle of sweaty limbs and fervid breath, Mukuro heard Byakuran whisper, soft and thunderous against the shell of his ear, 'Will you let me kiss you?'

Mukuro reopened his eyes. Those beautiful eyes of amethyst above him displayed no intention to deride his defeat; they gleamed with affection.

This odious man! How could he make me go through hell, and then take me straight to heaven next?

'Why bother to ask now? You already did.' Mukuro closed his eyes again. 'Even if I say no, you'd still do it again anyway.'

Even though I've done all I could to kill him…

Under the fey lighting of the room, the Millefiore leader's shadow hooded his captive's body. Atop the crumpled sheet of white linen, two torsos discoursed in a wordless conversation. With one hand, Byakuran caressed Mukuro's thigh, with the other, he tilted Mukuro's head to meet him on the mouth, each fingertip conveying the depth of his affection.

At this rate, I'll fall in love for real.

When his captor's philtrum brushed against his lips, Mukuro breathed in Byakuran's scent—his ragged breath, his sweat, his sex, his whole being. He felt the other man's tongue slip out and when it touched his lips, he opened his mouth wider for his partner, allowing the collision of their tongues. As the ardent man led his tongue into an impassioned dance, its soft brush made him melt in his capturer's arms.

Had his hands not been tied to the bed, he would have returned Byakuran's embrace.

If only I had never met you, there would have never been a harrowing presence in my heart when you were gone, but I'd never known true love my whole life through.

If only.

OWARI


For those who want to know how Byakuran took Mukuro the first time (the night before), read Feats and Defeats. Further information on Byakuran's immortality and eternal youth is available in For the Love of Hell. Some of Byakuran and Mukuro's incarnations in the other lives are also described in Raison d'être. As for the one about the marriage proposal and how Byakuran gained the diagonal scar on his back will appear in my upcoming fics (both are scheduled for posting in winter 2014).