It is amazing what I can churn out when I wake up at 3am and can't go back to sleep. It can be considered a miracle that this is even coherant, though I did edit it. I do not own Sukisho or the characters used. Enjoy.

Needles. Drugs. Chafing restraints. Burning pain and throbbing agony. Sunao is in so deep that he can't tell up from down anymore, or right from left. The only thing in existence is his own body and that constant, terrible pain. It's the one thing that never seems to go away.

It's all right, though. Sunao is one with with the pain. He knows how to ride it, like a surfer riding that fearsome wave to shore. Usually, usually he can take it. When it gets too much, too constant for him to bear, Ran takes over, and Sunao is free for a short time. The space inside his head is blank, devoid of feeling. Thankfully there is also no pain there. Sunao can rest, and prepare himself for the pain that is to come when Ran retreats. Because there will be pain. It never goes away.

A soft whimper escapes his lips when he comes back to himself. He is back in his 'room,' a tiny cell not fit for any living thing to inhabit. The last thing he remembers he was in an experiment room, chained up while the people here ran tests on the body's response to electric shocks. Ran has saved him again, and he is truly grateful as he pulls his ratty blanket from his bed and wraps it around his thin shoulders. A shred of comfort, the only kind he can get. Without his dual personality, his spirit would have given out and died a long time ago. Because Kuu-chan isn't here anymore. He has to wait out the long nights alone.

Drifting into a fitful slumber, he is later awoken by heavy footsteps and the clinking of an iron lock being opened. They have returned for him. In his room, there is nowhere to hide. No small space to make it even slightly more difficult for them to find him. He learned this long ago, but it means nothing. He has long lost the will for such hopeless stalling, and puts up no resistance as rough hands grab him in a bruising grip, and his day begins anew.

Pink eyes fly open, staring at the familiar, comforting darkness of his dorm room. With panting breaths, the knowledge sinks in that he's at school, in his room, away from that horrible place. He is safe here. Safe with Sora and Matsuri.

His eyes are drawn to the other side of the room, and his chest tightens in panic when he sees that the other bed is empty. Sora. Sora is supposed to be sleeping there. Where is he? Have they taken him?

The terror grips him completely, strengthened by the nightmare. He bolts upright, looking desperately around the room as though expecting Sora to pop out of some dark corner. His breathing, which had slowed down when he woke up, speeds up again, and he starts to feel dizzy. Panic. Where is Sora?

The door clicks open, and a beam of slightly paler light infiltrates the room. Sora takes one look at Sunao's pale face and wide, frightened eyes and seems to understand immediately. A soft sigh escapes his lips. "Nightmare?" he asks, keeping his voice quiet and unobtrusive. He doesn't want Sunao to start crying.

Mutely, Sunao nods, not trusting his voice to say anything. He doesn't want to hear it shake. Sora watches him for a moment while the pink-haired boy tries to regain his control. The silence is broken only by Sunao's rough gasps and Sora's own quiet breathing. Slowly he moves the rest of the way into the room, closing the door behind him. His feet carry him to Sunao's bed, and he sits down on the edge.

"There, there," he croons, returning the embrace as Sunao's arms fly around his neck. A too-hot face is buried into his collarbone, and Sora feels a few tears fall on his skin. Gently, he rubs Sunao's back, murmuring gently to him while the smaller boy whimpers. Tomorrow he knows that Sunao will be embarrassed by this, will deny that this weakness was ever shown. That's all right. Sunao's nightmares are from a time that Sora can't remember. A time that his own mind wiped clean from his memory. When things like this happen, he always wonders just how terrible it was.

"Where were you?" Sunao's choked voice breaks the relative silence. He doesn't pull away, and Sora continues to gently rub his back. The question confuses him slightly.

"Just now?" Or did he mean back then? But he feels Sunao's confirming nod against his collarbone. "Bathroom," he says, and after a moment Sunao nods again.

Slowly he feels tight muscles relax. Internally, he heaves a sigh of relief, though he keeps his breathing slow and even for Sunao. One of them has to be the calm one here. "Want me to sleep with you?" he asks, murmuring into his friend's ear. For a moment, he worries that he made a mistake as Sunao freezes completely. Then, a tentative nod.

"Y-yeah," the whisper, shaky and mangled, confirms it, but he doesn't let go. There's the fear, the terrible fear that if he lets go of Sora now, the blue-haired boy will never return to him. That prospect is far too painful and terrifying to bear.

Sora waits a moment just to see if anything will happen. He breathes out slowly, then gently begins to ease Sunao down to the bed. Sunao's body tightens, and Sora freezes, as awkward and uncomfortable as the position is. "Easy," he whispers, a simple reassurance. The seconds tick by. Sunao reluctantly relaxes again.

Carefully, and always gently, he lowers Sunao the rest of the way down until he feels his hands on Sunao's back make contact with the mattress. The other boy is still stubbornly refusing to let go, so Sora is left to fumble awkwardly for the blankets while trying to keep his weight from crushing Sunao. Despite the hindrance, he manages to find the end of the blanket and tug it over them. It is while nestled in this snug cocoon with the other's presence warm on top of him that Sunao begins to feel more secure. Finally his body loosens, and although he still does not let go, Sora is able to shift to a more comfortable position on his side. Now that he doesn't have to support his own weight, he also relaxes.

On impulse, he presses a kiss against Sunao's eyebrow, surprised by how natural the gesture feels. "It's okay now," he says when Sunao finally pulls away enough to meet his eyes in the darkness. "I won't go anywhere and leave you behind again. I promise," he whispers, swearing against an abandonment he doesn't remember, but that Sunao found so painful.

Sunao's lips tighten. He stares intently into Sora's face, trying to determine whether he's telling the truth. A small smile appears. "Okay." At last the tension has left his voice, and after a few more seconds it left his body too. "But I hope you know," he adds, face serious and yet somehow playful, "that if you break that promise, I'm going to kill you in the most painful way possible."

Sora smiles back. His relief is almost palpable, it's so strong. "I gotcha," he laughs, pulling the other boy close again. Sunao's warmth is amazing. "I'll make sure you don't have to do that. I'm not sure how you'd stand the pain of having to kill me yourself," he teased.

Sunao hums into his collarbone as a response, and both fall silent, relaxing into each other's embrace. Their breathing evens out, and soon they are sound asleep. No more nightmares plague their peaceful slumber.