Thank you everyone for waiting so patiently for the second and I'm afraid to say, the last chapter of this story. Thank you again to Month4 for the wonderful idea and thank you to all my readers and reviewers out there!

Now on with the chapter!

You are the light that drives away my darkness

Chapter 2

Through the darkness shines your light

Through the darkness shines your light...

Can you save me from myself?

Flynn had never felt so afraid before in his entire life. On the way to Halure, he had never stopped praying that it wasn't too late. He would not be able to take it if Yuri were to die in his arms.

So he had busted into the Inn and yelled for someone to bring a doctor. They must have been quite the sight to see; the commandant carrying a bloodied man in his arms, looking all but fearful for his life. The Innkeeper had immediately sent for a doctor and granted them a room. Flynn had put Yuri gently on the bed and while he waited for the doctor, he couldn't help but take in the state of his friend. It was horrible. He had lacerations across his chest and his right arm. His shoulder seemed to have been stabbed, as well as his hand. But what was the worse were his wrists. The skin was peeled back and bleeding. It was a mess. And Flynn knew Yuri had wounds lower on his body that he couldn't see. He had never seen Yuri this vulnerable, this close to death before... And it was freaking him out.

The doctor had chosen this moment to enter the room, and when he had seen Yuri's state, he didn't lose any time to begin working on him. Flynn would have stayed with him, but the doctor had told him he didn't want any interruption. So he had kicked him out of the room, telling him to go wash himself.

Flynn had gone to the restroom to wash his hands with a vexed expression. He had wanted to stay with his friend. Now he was pacing outside of the room, devoured by the anxiety. Karol seemed to be deep in thoughts, sitting in a chair with Repede curled up on the floor against his leg.

Flynn couldn't take more of that wait. He was about to go knock on the door when it opened and the doctor came out, taking out his blood-stained gloves. Flynn went to him anxiously. "How is he?" He asked the doctor, worry plaguing his face. The older man didn't seem fazed by his reaction. "He'll live. I've stabilized him." As soon as the words left the doctor, Flynn let out a sigh of relief and heard Karol do the same.

The doctor motioned Flynn to follow him and entered the room. Flynn did as told and followed the man into the room. His gaze fell immediately on Yuri's sleeping face. The older man looked at Flynn with a serious expression. "He'll live, but some of his wounds are deep. It'll take some time to recover, but there's nothing that shouldn't heal. The wounds on his wrists were the most severe he had. It seems he did them on his own volition, trying to get free of some bond I suppose." Flynn thought back on the state Yuri's wrists were and he shuddered. For him to have come to such a mean, he was desperately trying to get free.

The doctor broke his train of thoughts. "However, even if his body will heal with time, I can't say the same with his mind." His words confused Flynn. "What do you mean, his mind?" The older man turned his head away. "From some wounds I have seen, I can only assume he has suffered some mental trauma. This, I'm afraid, is something that not even time can fully heal." This time, dread returned to nest inside Flynn's chest. "I don't understand. What do you mean by that? Tell me!" He asked impatiently. The doctor shook his head sadly. "I'm afraid I can't tell even you, commandant. This is something he will have to tell you himself. I'm sorry. Just know that for the time being, he is out of danger. He just needs to rest."

Flynn knew pushing the subject wouldn't get him anywhere. So he simply thanked the doctor and watched him walk through the door.

His gaze fell on his friend. Yuri seemed to be sleeping peacefully, his dark hair splayed on the pillow around his head. If it wasn't for the bandages that covered him, Flynn could have thought everything that happened had been nothing but a nightmare. But it had been real. He could still feel it. Even though Flynn had washed and scrubbed his hands until there was no tomorrow, he could still feel Yuri's blood on them.

Suddenly, Karol and Repede burst out in the room. "Yuri is safe?" The young man exclaimed, running to Flynn, as if asking if what the doctor had said was true. Flynn ruffled his hair in the same mean that Yuri always did. "Yeah, he is. But he needs to rest. I'll watch over him, so you can get some rest as well. I've made a reservation for another room." Karol nodded. "Okay, thanks. Wake me up if there's any change, okay?" He asked with worry and Flynn smiled gently at him. "I'll do. It's a promise." He said on a gentle tone. Karol smiled back and thanked him again. With a last glance at Yuri's sleeping form, Karol left the room.

Flynn looked at Repede and saw the dog climb on the bed only to lie next to one of Yuri's legs. Repede wasn't usually seeking the closeness of his master that much. It was enough to make Flynn know Repede had been as worried for Yuri's safety as the rest of them. They had all feared to lose him.

Flynn sighed and sat in a chair next to Yuri's bed. He couldn't help thinking about what he felt when he saw Yuri in that state, standing on the bridge of death. He had felt hollow, empty and lost. Just as he had felt one year ago when he had thought Yuri had died, falling of Zaude. It was like a part of him had died along with Yuri. He couldn't picture his life without his untamed friend. He had always been there besides him, even when they had grown apart in the previous years. But their bond had never faltered, only grown stronger. They were more than friends, more than brothers. So what were they? Flynn couldn't describe what he felt for Yuri, but he knew that he would never feel this strongly for someone else. Yuri held a special place in his heart. Everything about him was making his heart sway. His cocky smiles, his way of taunting Flynn, his strong sense of justice, the way he didn't care what others thought about him... Yuri was his rock and without him, Flynn would drown and die.

He had come to realise how much he cared about his fiery friend. And he'd kill himself if he didn't get the chance to tell him. Even though he didn't know how to put in words how he felt. He would manage somehow.

He reached a hand towards Yuri and softly caressed his hair. He smiled gently. "Stupid Yuri, making us worry like this. You better wake up soon." He whispered softly, getting no response from the sleeping man. Flynn would stay by his side until he woke up. He was up for a whole night of sleeping on an uncomfortable chair.

The commandant woke up in the middle of the night. At first, he didn't know what had waked him up. But soon, he heard Yuri's voice break the silence of the room. Flynn immediately lighted up the candle holder and went to Yuri's bed. "Yuri?" He whispered, thinking the young man was awake. Having no response, Flynn lifted the candle to lit Yuri's face. His friend was still asleep, but his sleep seemed to be troubled. He was moaning and pleading softly as his body trashed in the bed. His forehead was covered with sweat and his features were distorted in pain. He was clearly in the midst of a nightmare. Flynn sat on the edge of the bed and put the candle holder on the bedside table.

He grabbed Yuri's shoulder and shook him gently to wake him up. His move hadn't the expected result. Instead of waking up, Yuri seemed to shy away from his touch and his trashing grew more violent. "No... Don't..." His voice was scared and it broke the commandant's heart to hear it. Yuri had never showed him his weak side. He was always looking so strong, always putting up a facade. Always hiding his fears and worries for the good of the others. To see him now so vulnerable and afraid... Flynn couldn't take it. One of his hands went to the raven hair, caressing it gently as he continued shaking his shoulder. "Yuri, wake up!" He said more insistently.

Yuri' eyes shot open, fear and uncertainty clear in them. The first thing he saw when he awoke was Flynn's worried face hovering over him. He felt a hand in his hair and had to refrain himself from pushing it away. "It's okay, Yuri. It was just a nightmare. You're safe now." He said soothingly, still caressing his hair.

Yuri tried to convince himself of that. But the nightmare had been real. He had been back with Zagi, in that hated room that smelled of death. He had relived the same events. He had relived the pain, the shame and the violation. Again, and again and again...

He put his forearm in front of his eyes and tried to calm his breathing. "Where am I?" He said weakly. Flynn smiled sadly. He knew that Yuri's move was just a mean to hide himself from Flynn. He didn't want him to see his weakness more than necessary. How he would like Yuri to trust him enough to show him all of his sides, not just what he wanted the others to see. But he wouldn't push him into it. It would be the worst thing to do in his state. Instead, he chose to answer his question. "We're in Halure. I took you there after we rescued you. We've had a doctor here bandage you up."

"Did... did he say anything to you?" Yuri's voice was uncertain, scared even. He was obviously trying to hide it, but he was failing. The doctor's words came back to Flynn's mind and his features became plagued with worry. "Well, he said something about some of your wounds making him believe you had suffered mental trauma. He wouldn't tell me, though. He said you were the one who would have to tell me." Flynn heard Yuri sigh softly in relief. This worried him further. Not knowing what had happened to Yuri as he was held captive was eating away at him. If only he knew, he would help him in any way he could. He didn't want Yuri to push him away. "Is there any chance you'll tell me someday?" He asked in a whisper. He saw Yuri stiffen and hold his breath. But he got no response to his question.

He didn't push the subject. He wouldn't get anything out of Yuri tonight. His hand left Yuri's hair and he slowly stood up. "Well, I'll let you rest. You need your sleep if you want to recover." He made a move to get away from the bed, but he suddenly felt a hand close weakly around his wrist. He turned around only to see Yuri looking at him with a desperate glint in his eyes. "Stay... please." He said it with so much fear and desperation, it broke Flynn's heart. Whatever that Zagi had done to him, he had left numerous scars. It made Flynn wish he had made him suffer longer before killing him.

Pushing his thoughts aside, Flynn sat back on the edge of the bed, leaning his back against the headboard. "Of course, if you want me to." He said softly, resuming caressing Yuri's hair. Yuri seemed uncertain of his touch at first, but he soon settled more comfortably in the bed, sighing softly and closing his eyes. It didn't take long before his breathing evened out and the commandant knew his friend was sleeping. But he still continued stroking his hair. He would make sure Yuri didn't wake up with nightmares a second time.

Flynn had fallen asleep against the headboard at some point in the night. When Yuri woke up, he was rewarded with a vision of Flynn peacefully asleep, his hand near his hair. The commandant must have fallen asleep as he was caressing his hair. Yuri remembered asking him to stay and he felt ashamed of that. He shouldn't have asked him that. Flynn had other duties, more pressing matters to do than to take care of him. He was keeping him away from his work.

But Yuri couldn't help but be hypnotized by his friend's peaceful face. How many years has it been since he saw Flynn so at ease? Thinking back on it, the last time was probably when they were both in the knights. Before they began their separate paths. Before all this ever happened. Yuri wondered if everything would have been different if he had stayed in the knights. He might have not met his friends, nor would he have made the same choices. And he might have never met Zagi that time at the castle, which had led to the assassin's obsession of him and to the situation that just happened. If he had chosen a different path, he might not be feeling filthy and abused right now. He wouldn't want to hide from the others, to hide from Flynn.

He shook his head and closed his eyes. What's done is done. There was no way to change the past. He had to live with the wounds that Zagi left imprinted in him. Right about now, he could still feel his hands on him, feel his touch crawl on his skin. It was making him feel sick. He needed a bath. He needed to wash himself over and over until his skin was raw and there were no traces of the assassin left on him.

Yuri tried to sit up and almost screamed as he hurt all over. The worst places were his wrists, his shoulder and another part of him he didn't want to think about. He managed to sit up, even though it took him a lot of efforts.

The commandant awoke when he heard the rustling of sheets besides him and he turned his head to see Yuri sitting up in the bed. He frowned, discontent. "What do you think you're doing?" He said in a scolding tone and he saw Yuri jump slightly in the bed. He turned his face towards him. "Fl-Flynn. Sorry, I woke you. I was about to go take a bath." He said on a tone he wanted cheerful, but he failed miserably. Flynn's expression didn't change. "No, you're not going anywhere. You still have to rest. Taking a bath can wait." He said on a tone that left no place to arguing. But Yuri wouldn't hear it. "Listen, I'm feeling well enough. You don't have to worry about me. I just want to take a bath, that's all."

Flynn looked at him with disapprobation. "Well enough? Look at you! You look like a freaking zombie! No. You're not getting out of that bed or my name isn't Flynn Scifo." This time, Yuri began to lose his temper. "I don't need your permission." He snapped and made a move to get out of bed. Flynn wouldn't have it. He grabbed his arms and when he saw Yuri flinch, his grasp became gentler. "Don't be difficult, Yuri. I can't let you. Your wounds aren't healed enough yet! If I take off your bandages, they might reopen!"

"I don't care! Just let me go!" He said with rage. Flynn saw it was getting out of hand.

He did the only thing he could think of to calm Yuri. He closed his arms around him and pulled his friend close to him, pressing his face into the crook of his neck. He felt him stiffen and try to push him away. "Calm down. I won't hurt you." He said on a soothing tone and felt Yuri slowly relax. But he never returned his embrace. "Try to understand. If I'm doing this, it's because I know it's for your own good. Please, Yuri..." He said on a pleading tone.

Yuri closed his eyes and sighed. "Okay, you win." He said with a tired voice.

Just with that sentence, Flynn knew there was something terribly wrong with Yuri. He had never been the type to just let Flynn have his way so easily. The commandant tightened his embrace around Yuri. "What did he do to you?" Flynn whispered against his neck, not waiting for any answer.

As expected, the swordsman answered nothing. He just kept staring at the wall, feeling warmth slowly melt away the cold that was filling him since Flynn rescued him. He wanted to return the embrace, to break down and tell Flynn everything, but he couldn't. He wasn't worthy of him anymore. He wouldn't bother him with his problems when he had already so much to do.

Flynn slowly let go of him and looked at his eyes. They seemed dead. These lifeless orbs that were always filled with mirth and joy of living were now empty, hollow. It frightened Flynn. If only he knew what had happened to Yuri, he might be able to help...

There was suddenly knocking on the door. Flynn told them to enter and Karol opened the door. When he saw Yuri was up, he ran to the bed. "Yuri! You're awake!" He said happily. Flynn saw the immediate change. Yuri turned his head towards Karol and smiled gently at him, ruffling his hair. But his smile was nothing but fake. Flynn could see it. His smile didn't reach his eyes. "I'm fine now, Karol. Sorry for worrying you." Karol faked anger. "Yeah, you should be! We all thought you would die!" The young man exclaimed. Yuri faked a laugh. "Sorry. Once I'm well enough, you can hit me as many times as you want." Karol nodded, happy to see Yuri was feeling better. He didn't see the look on Flynn's face. When he turned to him, it was already gone. "Flynn, I came to tell you that the innkeeper can rent us a small house just next to the inn. No one is living there right now. Since it will take some time before Yuri is feeling better, I thought it a good idea that we move there. It'll be more convenient." Flynn nodded in agreement. "Good idea. Stay with Yuri, I'll go see the innkeeper and make arrangements." He said and got up. He walked to the door, feeling Yuri's gaze on his back. He didn't want to turn around and face his fake smiles. He couldn't bear to take anymore right now. He needed some time to think.

They had moved Yuri to the empty house the same evening. That night, Flynn had settled into another room. He had wanted to leave Yuri some space. But when he had heard the first screams and had found Yuri in the midst of another nightmare, he had given up on sleeping in another room. He found out quite soon that the only thing that prevented Yuri from having nightmares was his own presence. He started sleeping in a chair next to Yuri's bed, holding his hand in his own or stroking his hair. It was the only means by which the young swordsman wasn't haunted by nightmares.

The day after Flynn had stopped Yuri from trying to take a bath, he considered he could let the swordsman do as he wished as he had to change the bandages. So he had led him to the bathroom, but he had left when Yuri had asked to be left alone. Flynn respected his wish, knowing it had to do with what he was hiding. Flynn had done as told. But he had begun to grow worried when Yuri had been confined in the bathroom for half an hour. When he had knocked on the door, he hadn't gotten a response. So Flynn had decided to open the door. He hadn't anticipated the vision before him. Yuri was still in the bath, his knees to his chin and his hands were on his arms. But what had made his blood run cold was the blood on his hands.

Flynn had run to his friend and soon saw what had caused all the blood; Yuri had scratched his arms until they bled. It hadn't seemed deep, but the fact was that Yuri had hurt himself. Yuri hadn't even turned his head to look at Flynn. He had been looking at the wall, a distant look to his eyes. He hadn't looked like he felt the pain. Flynn had taken a towel and had gently pulled his friend up, wrapping him into the towel. Flynn had led him to the room and taken care of his new wounds. Only then did Yuri seemed to recognized Flynn and realize what he had done. When Flynn had questioned him about it he only answered something quite disturbing; "It won't go away no matter how much I scrub." This had worried Flynn a whole lot.

And the more days passed, the more his anxiety grew. Yuri wasn't the same man anymore. He seemed afraid whenever someone came near him, he was more jumpy than ever and he rarely smiled anymore. And when he did, it was never genuine. And the most disturbing thing of all, he wasn't even complaining when he was eating food Flynn had prepared. He ate anything he prepared without a single complaint.

And no matter how much Flynn tried to get him to talk, Yuri didn't want to say anything. He had decided to keep everything he felt locked up inside him and put on his usual facade. But this time, it wasn't flawless. It might fool Karol, but it didn't fool Flynn. He could see Yuri break by the minute and he could only watch. He could do nothing to help him if he kept pushing him away. But still, Flynn stayed to take care of him, in hopes that one day, his friend would open up to him and let him help.

Two weeks had passed since they had rescued Yuri from the depths of Tarquaron. Yuri's injuries were almost completely healed, so Karol had begun to look for new jobs for Brave Vesperia. While Flynn was making dinner, Karol decided to go outside to search for a Union lamppost. Yuri was sitting on his bed, deep in thoughts. He was looking absent-mindedly through the open window. He felt something nudge him in the ribs and turned his head to see Repede settle against him. Yuri smiled softly to him and patted his dog.

"What is it, Repede?" His dog only whined in response. "I'm okay, don't worry." Yuri lied, but was rewarded with a menacing growl from his dog. Yuri's smile turned to sadness. "I can't lie to you, can I? In fact, I don't know if I'll ever be okay. I can't stop replaying that time in my mind. It's like I'm back there again, being raped and tortured by this foul man again and again. It's like I can't escape from it. I... I want to tell Flynn, but I can't... I can't do that. I'm not going to put such a burden on him. He's got already enough on his mind. And it's enough that he spent two entire weeks away from his work for me. I can't let him take care of me further." Yuri confided everything he felt to his dog, knowing that even if Repede couldn't help, he could at least take a load of its burden. Repede barked once and settled closer against Yuri. The latter stroked his head. "Thanks, Repede."

Karol had found an easy job at the Union lamppost. He didn't want to take something too difficult, since Yuri had just recovered from his wounds. He made his way back to the house. When he entered it, he saw Yuri and Flynn sitting at the table, eating the meal Flynn had prepared. They greeted him and Flynn motioned him to come eat. Karol did as told, mentally preparing himself to eat Flynn's cooking. They ate in an almost complete silence. When they finished and Flynn took upon him to wash the dishes, Yuri asked Karol about the job.

"So, did you have luck finding a job?" Yuri asked Karol without real interest, but Karol didn't notice that. "Yes. I found an easy job for a new start. We only have to escort a couple to Deidon Hold. So that means body guarding, and it's not that far from here. What do you say?" Yuri nodded. "It's good to me." Flynn turned around to look at Karol. "If it's not too much trouble, I'd like to come with you." Karol seemed surprise. "Why? I mean, you're not from Brave Vesperia. Why would you want to come?"

Flynn threw a quick sideway glance to Yuri, who turned his gaze away from him when he did so. "Because I'd like to see for myself what is it like to be in a guild." He lied smoothly. The truth was that he was worried about Yuri and he wanted to keep an eye on him. Karol seemed to believe what he had said. "Okay, let's all go together, then!"

Escorting the couple to Deidon Hold had been fairly easy. They had encountered several groups of monsters, but they had taken care of them swiftly. Flynn was constantly keeping an eye on Yuri. He knew him enough to know he was distracted. His movements weren't as precise and deadly as they usually were. He had to look out for him.

The trouble happened on the way back. They were about halfway between Deidon Hold and Halure when Yuri suddenly stopped walking. He stared in a direction as memories flooded him. It was the exact spot where they had set camp that fateful day.

He heard the rustle of leaves and froze when he saw someone far too familiar emerging from his hiding spot. "It's been a while, Yuri. Missed me?" Zagi's demented face was smiling cruelly at him.Without noticing it, Yuri's entire body began shaking as he remembered this place. And he couldn't stop the memories of coming back to haunt him. Zagi lifted his bloodied weapon towards his face and licked the blood away. "Hum, yes... I'll make you bleed and beg for mercy..." The assassin whispered darkly and Yuri couldn't help the shiver of fear that ran through him. No, he didn't want to remember. Not again!

Flynn had stopped walking when he had seen Yuri do the same. He frowned as he quickly noticed something was wrong. He could only see Yuri's back, but his frigid stance had told him so. He was about to go to him when he heard noises coming from the woods. Monsters. Flynn took out his sword and Karol and Repede also prepared themselves for combat, but Yuri didn't move from his frigid position. "Yuri!" Flynn yelled to him, but he got no response. He swore under his breath as the monsters approached them. They engaged combat. Flynn was taking care of two monsters. They weren't too strong. By the time he had finished with them, he threw a glance at Yuri.

His friend hadn't budged from his place. And he hadn't seen the monster that was about to attack him. Flynn rushed to his friend and ran his sword through the monster, felling him in one strike.

It was the last of the monsters. Flynn sheathed his sword and looked at Yuri. He was shaking. Of all the...? Flynn grabbed his arm in a tight hold. "Yuri, what's –"

He hadn't expected his reaction. Yuri violently pulled away from his grasp. "Don't touch me!" He yelled in fright, fear overwhelming in his gaze. He felt a sharp pain run through his shoulder at his abrupt gesture and his hand clenched around the recovering wound. Flynn looked at him in surprise. Yuri seemed to finally realize his friend was there. He tried to calm his breathing and he turned his gaze away. "S-sorry." He said in a whisper. Now Flynn was really worried. He wanted to say something, but Karol and Repede came to join them. "Is everything okay?" Karol asked, having heard the altercation. His gaze went questioningly from Flynn to Yuri. Yuri turned his face towards Karol and smiled forcefully. "It's all right. I think I'm just tired. Let's get back to town." He said and resumed walking quickly towards Halure.

Flynn looked at his back, his feeling of dread growing by the minute. He thought back on every reaction of Yuri since they had rescued him. On his self mutilation in the bath. On what he had said to explain it. On his reaction just now. He thought back on the doctor's words. The puzzle seemed to suddenly come together and Flynn didn't like where it was going. He hoped he was wrong. Back at the house, he would confront Yuri about this. It had gone on long enough. He couldn't bear to see him destroy himself anymore. He couldn't let this continue.

When they arrived at their rented house, Yuri disappeared into the bathroom. Worried, Flynn went to follow Yuri, but he stopped when he heard his friend being sick. Karol looked at Flynn in confusion. "What's happening with Yuri? He doesn't seem well." Flynn took off his armor and frowned lightly. "I know. I'm going to have a talk with him. Maybe you could search for another job in the meantime?" He said in an excuse to get Karol away from the house for a moment. He knew Yuri enough to know it could get ugly soon. He didn't want Karol to witness this. And Flynn wouldn't stop harassing Yuri until he got to the bottom of this.

Karol seemed uncertain. "Hum... okay. I'll be back soon." He said and left the house, throwing a last worried glance at Flynn. As soon as he was gone, Flynn went to Yuri's room and sat on the bed, waiting for his friend to enter. Minutes later, the door opened and Yuri entered the room. He froze in place when he saw Flynn waiting for him, a serious look on his face. He didn't make a move as Flynn got up from the bed and went to shut the door behind him. Flynn walked to him slowly, but Yuri deftly put distance between them, making his way to the window. He stubbornly kept his back to Flynn. "What do you want?" He said with a tired voice. Flynn inspected him closer. His body was still shaking.

"I want to talk about what happened. This has gone on long enough." He said gently. He saw Yuri stiffen. A few seconds passed and Yuri turned halfway towards Flynn, showing one of his fake smiles that Flynn hated so much. "What are you talking about?" He said innocently. Flynn wouldn't have that. He walked the rest of the way and put a hand on the wall next to the window. His face was dead serious. "Don't play that game, Yuri. You know what I'm talking about. I can't let you go on like this. Tell me what happened back there. I want to know what that Zagi did to you." He asked on a deadly tone. Yuri's smile faltered. He turned around and walked past Flynn. His left hand gripped his right arm. "Why? After everything you've seen, it should be pretty obvious." He whispered in the silence of the room.

He jumped when he felt hands on his arm, but he didn't fight it when he was turned around to face Flynn. His friend was still wearing that serious expression. "I want to hear it from you."

Yuri shook Flynn's hands away from him and glared at him. "Even if you did know, what good will that do? It won't change anything!" He replied on an angry tone. He didn't want to talk about this. He didn't want to revive it again. Why did Flynn need to push him like that?

Flynn kept his calm. He knew Yuri was on the verge of breaking down. He had to push him towards it. His friend might hate him afterwards, but he had to do it.

"If you tell me, if you trust me with this, I can help you! But I can't do anything if you keep pushing me away!"

This had the effect he had wanted. Yuri's face contorted in pain and anger. He walked to Flynn and pushed him backwards violently. "You want the truth? Fine! I'll tell you the truth! Do you want to know how it felt like, too? Do you want to know how it feels to be tied to a wall and be raped by another man? Do you want to know what it feels like to be spread open and fucked by his enemy? To be left completely ruined and abused and filthy? And most of all, ashamed. Because I liked it. I got thrilled by it. By being dominated and fucked in a dark and filthy room. And you know what? I wished he'd just kill me back there. At least it would have put an end to the pain and the shame. At least I wouldn't be here, feeling empty and broken, wondering if I'll ever be okay someday. There, you have it. Hope you're happy now."

Flynn was mortified by Yuri's words. He didn't make a move as he saw Yuri walk to the bed and sit on it, his face in his hands.

He had suspected as much, but to hear it really happened was horrible. What Yuri had gone through wasn't something he would wish to his worst enemy. It was no wonder Yuri was acting like he was. It was no wonder he was shying away from his touch.

Anger swelled up inside Flynn. He wished he could revive that Zagi and make him suffer just as he did to Yuri. He wished he could let him feel the pain he had inflicted upon his friend.

Flynn sat next to Yuri and made a move to take him in his arms, but Yuri shied away. "Don't. You shouldn't bother with me." He said while looking at the floor. Flynn didn't listen to him and gently closed his arms around him. Yuri let out a surprised gasp. He put his hands on Flynn's chest, trying to push him away weakly. Flynn put his cheek on top of Yuri's hair. "You shouldn't do that. I'm filthy." Yuri whispered shakily. Flynn pulled him even closer as a response. "Stupid. I won't ever think that. Never." He said with so much conviction that Yuri let himself be convinced. He felt warm. He felt secure in Flynn's arms. He didn't think he deserved it, but he let himself drown in the illusion.

He pulled himself closer to his friend, gripping his shirt tightly between his fingers. "Thank you. For being there. I feel like... like only you can drive away my nightmares. I still feel him on me, you know. I feel his disgusting touch. No matter what I do, it won't go away. But... when you're with me, it seems like it wants to fade away." He opened up, feeling some of his burden melt away with his words.

Flynn began to caress his hair softly. Yuri's words touched him. It was the first time his friend opened up to him like this. He replaced some of his hair behind his ear. "I'm glad to hear that. Because I have no intention of letting you slip away from my grasp again." He whispered against his ear. A shiver ran through Yuri, both at Flynn's words and his breath against his skin. His heart began to beat faster. He smiled weakly. "What, are you hoping to tame me?" He joked out of practice.

He felt a hand under his chin, gently lifting his face until he stared into Flynn's eyes. The commandant's expression was serious and Yuri felt drawn to the intensity of his blue eyes. "I doubt anyone could ever tame you. But could you at least let me try?" He whispered near his face. Yuri missed a breath, but he didn't answer anything in fear of breaking the moment.

Flynn leaned in and, still gripping Yuri's chin, he slowly covered his lips with his own in a gentle kiss. Yuri let out a gasp that was drank by Flynn and his body started shaking again. But this time, he wasn't shaking out of fear; it was out of excitement. He moved his lips against Flynn as his friend was claiming them in a caring and gentle kiss. It wasn't until Flynn moved his hand behind his head to deepen the kiss that Yuri realized what they were doing. He pushed against Flynn's chest and the latter broke the kiss, looking confused at Yuri. He tried to look at his eyes, but Yuri had lowered his head, hiding behind his bangs. "Yuri?" He whispered, confused about his reaction. But more than anything, he was afraid he had pushed him too far. He had felt a strong desire to kiss him, to show him what he felt for him. He feared he would be rejected and he also feared he had hurt Yuri by imposing on him.

"Just... just leave me alone for a moment. I'm confused and... and I need time to think." He said, finally lifting his face to look at Flynn. The commandant was glad to see there wasn't any fear, nor hate or anger in those black eyes. There was uncertainty and confusion.

Flynn nodded and let go of Yuri. He stood up slowly and made for the door. He turned to Yuri before opening the door. He was about to say something, but Yuri was quicker than him. "Will you... will you come back here tonight?" He asked quietly. Flynn was glad to hear him say that. The last thing he wanted to do was to scare his friend. He smiled gently. "Yes, of course. I'll let you rest for now." He answered and left the room, leaving Yuri alone to think about what had just happened. He lifted trembling fingers to his lips.

The kiss had been incredible. Yuri had felt like he was coming back to life at the contact of Flynn's lips. He had wanted more, but it was wrong on so many levels.

Yuri wasn't worthy of him. Flynn was the commandant, one of the empire's top dog. Everyone had high expectations of him. How would they react learning he was screwing around with his best friend, a male and a criminal at that? He could risk his career. And over what? Over him? Yuri couldn't take that risk, even if it meant ignoring his desires. Even if it meant he would drown into the darkness that now filled him. Flynn was his light. Whenever he touched him, the darkness was fading away, only to be replaced by a pure and untainted warmth.

Flynn was the light that drove away his darkness. And without him, he would surely die. But Yuri couldn't let his selfish needs destroy everything his friend had achieved.

Flynn came back to Yuri's room once Karol had fallen asleep. He knew Yuri wouldn't be sleeping. He was waiting for him. They had much to talk about. Flynn hadn't stopped thinking about that kiss. He had left without any explanation, but he was determined to tell Yuri of his feelings. He wanted no misunderstanding between them.

He knocked softly against the door and he heard Yuri's voice telling him to enter. He did as told and closed the door behind him. Yuri was looking through the window, leaning on the windowsill. He turned towards Flynn and smiled softly at him. Flynn smiled back and went to sit on the bed. He motioned Yuri to sit next to him and the latter did as told, but he put some distance between them. Flynn noticed that, but he didn't say a word about it. "I think we need to talk about what happened. That kiss –"

"...Was a mistake." Yuri finished for him. Flynn's heart sank in his chest when he heard that. Yuri turned his eyes away, unable to look at Flynn's expression. "We shouldn't have done that. It's wrong. We're friends, nothing more." He lied through his teeth. It was better for both of them.

"You're telling me that what I'm feeling for you is wrong? Well, if it is, I can burn in hell for all I care." Flynn's unwavering words had Yuri look into his eyes in surprise. Flynn was dead serious. Yuri couldn't bring himself to say anything. Flynn smiled gently at him.

"You can't be that obvious, Yuri. I care a lot about you. I only came to realise that a year ago. When you fell from Zaude and everyone thought you were dead, I felt it burn inside of me. It was pure agony. It felt like a part of me was dying along with you. I couldn't bear the thought of living without you. Of never seeing your smile again, of never hearing your voice calling my name again. And when you were kidnapped by Zagi, I was afraid I would lose you a second time. This made me realize what these feelings were."

Yuri held his breath. He was conflicted. He wanted to hear Flynn say it, but at the same time, he didn't want to. It would make what he had to do much more difficult.

Yuri felt hands on each side of his head and he looked deep inside Flynn's gaze. The latter was about to open his mouth, but Yuri put a finger on his lips, stopping him. "Don't. Please don't say it." He said and disentangled himself from Flynn. He stood up and began pacing the room. Flynn watched him with sadness. "Why? Because it will make it real?" Yuri shook his head and nibbled his bottom lip. "I told you. Because it's wrong. What we are feeling is not meant to be." He whispered, turning his back to Flynn.

The commandant stood up and slowly approached Yuri. "Then you admit it. You admit that you feel the same as I do." Flynn whispered, his heart beating faster than normal. Yuri turned towards him and glared at him. "What are you saying? This is nonsense! I never said anything of the sort!" Yuri denied, becoming agitated. This wasn't going where he wanted. He had to tell Flynn that they had to forget about what happened, but he was failing miserably. Deep down inside, Yuri knew it was because he wanted to be with Flynn. He wanted the happiness of being loved, of being held through the night. He wanted for someone to make his pain go away. And the only one who could give him that was Flynn. It had always been him.

Flynn smiled sadly at him. "I know you better than anyone alive, Yuri. I know everything about you, every aspect of you. Just like I know you're lying to me right now."

Yuri smiled sarcastically. "Well, aren't we cocky? Are you sure you know everything about me? Because I say you're mistaken."

Flynn had had enough of this game. He grabbed Yuri's arms and pulled him towards him. He felt him tense under his touch, but it was only for a second. Flynn looked right into his eyes.

"Then if I am, look at me in the eye and say it! Tell me you don't feel the same about me and I'll never bring the subject again. I'll forget about that kiss."

It was his chance. If Yuri said it, Flynn would give up and it would be the best option. He just had to say it. To say he didn't love Flynn. He withstood his friend's gaze and tried to say it, but he found himself incapable of doing it. He felt frustrated beyond belief. He turned his head away.

"I... This isn't about what I want, but what you have to do! I can't let you sacrifice everything you strived to achieve! Don't you see? I have no place by your side." He finally said what had been plaguing his mind since his quest one year ago.

Flynn was now confused. "What are you saying?" Yuri shook his head. "Think about it. You're the commandant. You're only second to the emperor. I am sure the people of the empire have plans for you to marry in the nobility. Or at least, to marry a woman so you can have descendants." Seeing Flynn wasn't going to interrupt, he went on. "So how do you think your people will react when they'll learn you have chosen a male as your mate? And not anyone. A guilder and a criminal at that. A filthy criminal who doesn't deserve to have your favours." This time, Flynn reacted strongly. "Don't degrade yourself like that! And since when do you care what other people think?" He asked harshly and Yuri refrained from wincing when Flynn's hold on his arms tightened.

"I don't care about what they think! They can call me whatever they like! That's not the problem. It's just that I don't want you to lose what you have now. If you associate with me, it'll surely happen. People are greedy and jealous. Some may want to use me as an excuse to steal your title. I don't want to be the cause of that. So what I want has no importance. It's just not meant to be." He whispered the last part, hoping Flynn would come to reason. He was hoping too much.

Flynn's hands released him and his arms circled his waist, pulling him flush against him. The commandant's lips curved into a genuine smile. "And what if I say that you're more important to me than some title? That I'd rather lose my position as commandant over you?" He asked playfully and Yuri knew he had lost. Flynn always won, anyway. Yuri smiled back, even though it was strained. "Then I'd say you're the biggest fool in the world." He said and Flynn's smile got brighter. "That's fine by me." The next thing Yuri knew, soft lips had covered his own and he felt himself respond to it. He hesitantly wrapped his arms around Flynn's neck, losing himself in the sensations that washed over him. To hell with his resolve. He wanted this. He wanted to be selfish for once in his life.

Flynn softly caressed the small of his back, sending little sparks of electricity against his skin. The commandant's tongue gently caressed Yuri's lips, asking for entrance. Yuri hesitantly opened his mouth, letting Flynn gently explore his mouth.

Despite himself, fragments of memories flashed in his mind. When he felt a tongue demanding entrance into his mouth, Yuri stubbornly kept his mouth shut. Zagi growled with annoyance against his lips. His hand moved from his hair to his jaw, forcing his mouth open and he pushed his tongue between Yuri's lips. He was suddenly back in this place, being held in place by Zagi who was forcing himself on him. He began shaking lightly.

Flynn broke the kiss and went to Yuri's neck, nibbling the skin there. He suddenly felt a pair of lips on his neck, kissing his skin tenderly and deceitfully before teeth sank painfully in his neck, drawing blood.

Yuri panicked. He pushed forcefully on Flynn's shoulders. Flynn released him, surprise and confusion visible on his face. He saw Yuri make a few steps back, shaking like a leaf.

The memories faded and Yuri saw Flynn standing before him, looking confused. He felt guilty for pushing him away. "I... I'm sorry. It's the memories. They came back at once." He whispered painfully. Flynn looked at him sadly and closed the distance between them. He put an arm around Yuri and pulled him to his chest. "No, I'm the one who is sorry. It's still too soon. I shouldn't have imposed on you." He whispered back, stroking Yuri's hair.

Yuri closed his eyes, letting Flynn's warmth comfort him and calm him. He knew the memories would haunt him for a long time. But Flynn was the only one who could keep them at bay. He had to get over them. The only way was to relive them and replace them by new ones. He knew what he wanted. He knew what he had to do.

Yuri gripped Flynn's collar and lifted his face to Flynn. He locked his gaze with the commandant's. "Flynn... don't stop." With these two words, Flynn understood what Yuri was asking of him. His eyes filled with worry. "No, I can't do that. It's too painful for you." A pleading look took over Yuri's features. "I have to go through this. It's the only way to make the memories go away. It's the only way to make his touch stop crawling on my skin. I have to replace these memories." Flynn understood why it was necessary. But he didn't want to inflict pain on Yuri. Even if he was to take him gently, it was likely Yuri would feel pain as the memories would come back at once. He was conflicted.

Yuri leaned in and kissed his lips softly, whispering against them. "Please, Flynn. I want you to make the pain go away. I want to feel your touch on my skin."

Flynn's breathing caught in his throat. He couldn't resist Yuri. He smiled gently at him. "All right. But know that you can stop me at any time." Yuri nodded in response. He knew Flynn would never hurt him. He had to remember that. The commandant took his hand and led him to the bed. They sat on it and Flynn claimed his lips in a sweet kiss. His hands went to Yuri's waistband, silently asking for permission. When he felt no opposition from his soon to be lover, his hands deftly untied it and let it fall on the ground. Flynn broke the kiss and went to ravish Yuri's neck with slow kisses. He was rewarded with a soft moan of encouragement.

His hands slid on his shoulders and slowly let Yuri's shirt slip from them, leaving him naked from the waist up. Yuri shivered, trying to keep his nervousness in tap. This was Flynn. Flynn would never hurt him. He trusted him. He felt himself being gently probed to lie down. He did as told and saw Flynn hovering above him. The commandant took his hand and placed a sweet kiss on the nasty scar there. A shiver ran through Yuri at that. Flynn then proceeded on leaving a trail of kisses along the fading scar on his arm. Yuri moaned in encouragement and he pulled insistently on Flynn's shirt. He wanted it off now. Flynn chuckled and pulled his shirt off.

He then went to resume his explorations, tracing a path of kisses and licks along each one of Yuri's scars he could see. It burned Yuri wherever Flynn was kissing his skin. But it didn't hurt. It felt like a cleansing fire. He felt like Flynn was melting away the touch of Zagi.

But Yuri soon wanted more. He wanted his senses to be overwhelmed by Flynn. He wanted to drown into him. His hand found the front of Flynn's trousers and he deftly undid the laces. Yuri found his friend's lips again in a more desperate kiss as his hand slipped inside Flynn's pants and circled him, stroking him slowly. He felt the commandant jerk into the kiss at his touch. Yuri moaned into the kiss when he felt one of Flynn's hand behind his head, deepening the kiss, as the other was gently caressing the small of his back. Flynn was panting when he broke the kiss. Small sparks of pleasure were coursing through his veins as Yuri was still stroking him.

Flynn grabbed Yuri's wrist gently, making him stop his movement. He looked deep into the questioning eyes. He smiled gently to his childhood friend. "Please, don't. I want to be one pleasuring you." He whispered as he laid a gentle kiss on Yuri's forehead. This would have normally angered the swordsman, but he paid it no mind this time. Nervousness was slowly kicking in and that small gesture was comforting. Yuri nodded in response and he lifted his arms to circle the commandant's neck.

He felt Flynn's hands slowly trail down his sides to his hips, stopping at the hem of his pants. Flynn felt Yuri tense and he went to kiss and lick at his ear. "Can I?" He asked simply and he heard Yuri take a deep breath. "Yes..." He whispered shakily his approval.

Yuri closed his eyes as he felt Flynn undo his pants and slid them slowly down his legs. His ears picked the sound of another pair of breeches being divested. He could feel Zagi smile against his neck and felt movement behind him. His ears picked the sound of clothes being removed and he tried to still the beating of his heart. Yuri's heart began to beat faster as he pushed the memories away. Zagi wasn't there. He was with Flynn now...

He didn't dare open his eyes, for fear of what would be in Flynn's eyes. He felt a hand on his cheek, gently stroking it. "Yuri, look at me." Flynn's gentle voice probed at him and he opened his eyes to look deep into the commandant's gaze. There was no disgust there. Only desire, gentleness and affection. "You don't have to be ashamed, you know. I'll never think you are dirty. Never." He said before taking his lips in a hungry kiss. Yuri felt some of his nervousness disappear with Flynn's words. He kissed back with passion and he felt his skin burn at the contact of Flynn's own naked skin. He had wanted this for so long. To be with Flynn, to give his all to his childhood friend. He just wished Flynn could have been his first. He would have, if it hadn't been for Zagi. Now he was plagued with the memories of what the madman had done to him. Even now, he could almost hear his voice whisper to his ear. He tried to focus solely on Flynn.

The commandant resumed his path of kisses along Yuri's chest, stopping to give special attention to a nipple. He was pleased to hear a soft moan form Yuri under his ministrations. He went lower and lower, listening closely to Yuri's reactions. He felt him stiffen when he reached his most intimate parts. He gently caressed the inside of his thighs, trying to make him relax as he slowly spread his thighs apart and settled between them.

Yuri closed his eyes and tried to still the beating of his heart. He felt his friend kiss a line along the scar inside his thigh. He knew he wanted to calm him and Yuri tried to do so. His eyes shot open when he felt warmth slowly cover his most sensitive part. The pleasure was mounting too fast as Zagi's mouth was working on him. He felt disgusted and ashamed as his hips bucked once to have more of that feeling. The memories were flooding him again. Yuri forced his gaze downwards and his eyes fell on blonde hair. It was Flynn pleasuring him, not Zagi. Yuri let himself drown in the pleasure as Flynn worked his mouth up and down his length. It felt so good. He moaned softly and his hands found solace in the commandant's hair.

Feeling Yuri was finally relaxing, Flynn quickened his pace, sucking harder on Yuri's member. He heard him moan louder and he felt his grip tighten in his hair. While he worked on Yuri, he carefully inserted one finger into him. He felt his friend tense and he quickly inserted another one, searching for the bundle of nerves that would make Yuri go crazy. He knew he found it when Yuri arched his back and cried out in surprise. Flynn took that opportunity to stretch him for what was to come. Yuri didn't seem to mind anymore as Flynn intentionally brushed the same spot a few times more. The commandant's desire only grew in intensity, seeing his lover writhe underneath him, trying to get more of that feeling.

When he considered Yuri ready, he pulled his fingers out and released Yuri's member. Yuri whined in displeasure when he lost Flynn's wonderful touch. He saw Flynn get off the bed and enter the bathroom. Yuri was confused. What was he doing? Flynn soon emerged from the bathroom, carrying a bottle of lotion in his hand. "Why do you need that?" He asked with confusion as Flynn settled back between his thighs. Flynn looked at him with confusion before anger flare up inside him. Of course Zagi hadn't used lube. Knowing he had taken Yuri raw made him shake with anger. But now was not the time for that. He forced himself to calm down and smile gently at Yuri as he opened the cap, pouring the lotion into his hand. "I'll use this as lube. It will make penetration easier and less painful." He explained as he coated his member with the lotion.

Yuri swallowed and felt fear and anxiety slowly pool in his gut at what was coming. He could always back down, but he didn't want to. He had to go through this.

Flynn's hand found his own on the pillow and he intertwined their fingers, looking deeply into Yuri's worried glance. "Are you sure you want to do this?" He asked his lover with concern. Yuri closed his eyes for a second, like he was trying to gather his will. When he opened them, Flynn saw even more fright into the deep blackness of his eyes. "I have to. If I don't do this, I'll never be able to get over it." He whispered back.

Flynn sighed and caressed his cheek longingly. "All right. But if I see something goes wrong, I'm stopping it all. Okay?" Yuri nodded and closed his eyes again, trying to relax. He felt Flynn position himself to his entrance. A hand was on his thigh, gently spreading them further apart.

And then there was pain. He felt Flynn enter him slowly, pushing inside inch by inch. The memories cruelly went back to him. Lifting Yuri's hips, he pushed himself forcefully inside him in one fast trust. Yuri screamed in pain as the assassin tore at his insides. His muscles clenched around him, trying to push him out.

Flynn wasn't able to sheath himself completely inside Yuri. He felt his friend's muscles constrict painfully around him, preventing him from pushing further in or even pull himself out. He looked at Yuri's face, wondering what was happening.

Yuri's eyes were wide open, filled with fear and pain. His breathing was erratic, like he was searching for his air. Flynn's hands immediately went to the sides of his face. "Yuri, look at me! Yuri!"

But Yuri didn't hear him. He was back at this place again, with Zagi hovering over him, smiling cruelly down at him. He felt Zagi's member rub his insides raw. He couldn't take this... Zagi was panting near his face and groaning in pleasure. "Hum, your body is so tight... it feels so good." No, not that... He cowered in pain and pushed against his violator's shoulders. It hurt so much! He had to get away!

Flynn's heart broke when he saw Yuri shake in fear and felt him push weakly against his shoulders. He knew Yuri wasn't seeing him. He was back in his memories. He had to get him out of there. He pinned him to the mattress. "Yuri! Snap out of it!" He exclaimed strongly, his grip unwavering.

The sound of his voice snapped Yuri to reality. He focused his gaze on his face and he seemed to recognize him. But he was still looking as afraid as he had been seconds ago. Flynn caressed his hair soothingly. "That's it. It's me, Flynn. Now, try to relax. I'm pulling out." Flynn couldn't bear to see Yuri in such pain. This had been a bad idea from the start. It was still too soon.

In his panicked state, Yuri didn't register everything Flynn had said, but he had caught the last part. When he felt Flynn trying to pull out, he hooked a long leg behind his knees, preventing him from doing so. "No, don't." He whispered pleadingly and painfully.

Flynn threw him a horrified look. "What are you saying? You're hurting! I have to stop this. I can't bear to see you in pain." He said, still caressing his hair.

"Please, Flynn. Don't stop. I don't think I'll ever have the strength to go through this again if you stop." Yuri looked at him with such desperation and plead that Flynn felt his determination melt. His hand found Yuri's again and he rubbed soothing circles in his palm with his thumb. "Okay. But you need to relax. I'll make it better soon."

Yuri nodded and tried to do as he told. He was still hurting, but the pain was slowly fading as his body got used to Flynn. When the commandant felt his friend had relaxed enough, he pushed the rest of the way inside. He felt Yuri jerk in pain and he landed a sweet kiss on his lips to calm him.

He soon began a slow pace, pulling out of Yuri's wonderful and tight heat, only to push slowly back inside. At first, all that escaped Yuri's mouth were whimpers of pain. Flynn angled his trusts, trying to find his lover's weak spot so he could feel something other than pain.

Yuri bucked his hips and moaned loudly, but this time, it wasn't out of pain. Flynn knew he had found it and kept trusting at the same spot. His lips found Yuri's and he drank his moans and whimpers. The commandant felt his friend begin to move against him, meeting his trusts with his hips.

Another trust against his prostate had Yuri break the kiss and whimper sweetly against his lover's lips. "More..." He said out of breath.

Flynn was happy to comply. He went to ravish Yuri's neck and quickened his pace, ramming deeper inside his lover's willing body. He was rewarded with Yuri moaning his name in a heated voice that sent shivers down his spine. He felt Yuri's nails rake down his back and Flynn moaned in return.

Yuri couldn't believe how good this felt. He felt no pain anymore. Only a blinding pleasure that ran into his veins like liquid fire. He hadn't known being so intimate with someone could feel so wonderful. He closed his eyes and let himself ride on the pleasure quickly building inside him.

Flynn knew he wouldn't last long now. Being buried so deep inside his Yuri, inside his tight heat, hearing him moan and plead for more, seeing him writhe under him... it was too much. His hand closed around Yuri's erection and he stroked him in time with his trusts. He felt Yuri's thighs tremble under the pleasure and he knew he was about to reach the peak of his pleasure. A look to Yuri's face made him see his friend had closed his eyes.

Flynn suddenly slowed his pace, denying his friend his release. Yuri shot his eyes open, about to ask why Flynn was slowing down. One of the commandant's hands found his way into his hair and he looked deep into Yuri's gaze. "Look at me, Yuri. Look only at me." He whispered heatedly near his lips. He wanted to make sure Yuri wouldn't be lost in his memories. He wanted him to know he was with him. That it was Flynn giving him this pleasure. Yuri understood without him having to say it. He saw it in his eyes.

Without ever leaving his gaze, Yuri moved his hips down impatiently. Flynn couldn't stop a small smile from gracing his lips. He gave Yuri what he wanted. He resumed his pace, trusting dead on Yuri's prostate each time. He felt him shake beneath him and heard his sweat moans. They never let go of each other's gaze. Flynn trust one final time inside Yuri and he felt his muscles clench around him. Yuri arched his back and reached the peak of his pleasure with a cry of Flynn's name.

The pressure around Flynn was too much. He snapped his hips one final time, burying himself deep inside his lover, reaching his own orgasm and spending himself inside him. He managed to hold himself up as he experienced his aftermath, not wanting to crush Yuri under his weight.

When he had regained his breathing, Flynn pulled out of Yuri and fell on the bed beside him. He reached lazily to Yuri and pulled him to his chest. Yuri settled against him and sighed softly when he felt Flynn's hand in his hair, stroking it gently. Normally, he would have protested against such a treatment, but he was too spent to even care. And he felt at peace. He felt as if Zagi's touch had faded. It was still there, but it was less vivid than before. With time, it would disappear. And he would be able to give himself without second thoughts to his friend.

Friend... the word seemed foreign now. Friends didn't do what they had just done. What were they now? Lovers? The word wasn't so unpleasant to his ears...

He felt sleep slowly take over him. He was so tired. He didn't want to fight it. He let himself fall into a sleep free of nightmares.

When Yuri awoke, he felt warmth all over and when he was fully awake, he realized it was because he was still cradled against Flynn. He didn't remember ever feeling this at peace in years. He felt like he belonged there, in Flynn's arms.

A hand caressing his hair made him realize he wasn't the only one awake. He looked up and saw Flynn gently smiling at him. "You awake, sleepyhead? It's rather late already." Yuri scowled at him and Flynn laughed gently at his reaction. He kissed his lips in a fleeting kiss as an apology. "Sorry, I couldn't stop myself." He explained on a tone that seemed anything but sorry. But Yuri didn't really mind. He could never be angry at Flynn for a long time. He leaned in and claimed the commandant's lips in a more heated kiss. "I'll take no offense this time. But next time, you won't get away so easily."

Flynn's playful smile slowly vanished and he looked seriously at Yuri. The latter frowned at his reaction. "What's the matter, Flynn?" He asked with worry. A glint of uncertainty showed into the commandant's eyes. "Did I... did I hurt you last night?" He asked, fearing the answer. He would kill himself if he did. He didn't want Yuri to fear him, to remember what he had endured when he was with him. He didn't want him to close himself to him. Yuri's eyes filled with surprise. But his surprise soon turned to a mischievous smile. He pushed Flynn on his back and climbed on top of him, straddling his hips. "Are you seriously worried about that?" He said playfully, trying to lighten the mood. Flynn stayed motionless, only looking disapprovingly at his childhood friend. "Yuri, I'm not joking."

Knowing his friend wouldn't drop the subject, Yuri sighed softly and leaned against Flynn's chest, closing his eyes. "I'm fine really. I wasn't afraid knowing it was with you. You've shown me that it doesn't always need to be painful."

Flynn was relieved to hear it. He circled Yuri's waist and kept him close to his heart. Yuri settled more comfortably against him. "The memories are still there, but they are fading. I guess it will take some time before I can forget. No, not forget. Before I'm able to live with them." Yuri knew he would never be able to forget what Zagi had done to him. He would forever be scarred. But with time, even the scars could fade away so only a vague memory remained.

Flynn smiled sadly against his love's forehead. "That's not a problem. I've got all the time in the world for you. I'll never let you go for as long as I breathe." His promise swayed Yuri's heart. He untangled himself from Flynn's grasp and lifted himself to look in his eyes, his long hair falling around them. "Speaking of that, where are we going from here?" He asked seriously. He wanted to be sure about Flynn's intentions. He didn't want this to be a onetime thing. He also didn't want to be the lover someone kept in secrecy. If anything, he wanted Flynn to be completely devoted to him. Flynn reached a hand to his cheek and caressed it longingly. "I thought I had been clear on that point yesterday. I'm not letting you go again. You're stuck with me." He smiled brightly as he said the last words. Yuri returned his smile. "I wouldn't have it any other way." He answered back.

Flynn let his hands travel to Yuri's back, caressing it slowly. He felt Yuri shiver under his touch. "I'll send a message to Sodia later. I'll tell her that she needs to assume my position for a few days more." He said casually. He didn't miss the look of disapproval that settled on Yuri's features. "Flynn, I'm fine. You don't need to pamper me. I don't want you skipping your job even more that you already did. I can take care of myself."

Flynn sighed. He knew Yuri would react like that. "I know that, but I want to take care of you. I want to spend some time with you. Anyway, it's time I took some vacation. They were just not planned. And when I return to the capital, I want it to be with you by my side."

Yuri's expression softened. "Are you serious? You seriously want everyone to know of our relationship? I told you what could happen."

Flynn took Yuri's face between his hands and he looked deep into those lovely black eyes. "And I said I don't care. I don't want of a secretive relationship. I could care less if people get upset." He said with conviction.

Yuri smiled and this time, it reached his eyes. He covered one of Flynn's hands with his own. "I always knew you were the one out of us who cared the less about what people thought. But that's fine with me. Now it leaves me wondering how I'll manage to tell the others about us."

Flynn smiled mischievously and before Yuri knew it, his back it the mattress and he sank into it as Flynn leaned over him. "I'm sure you'll find something eventually. But for now..." He leaned in and claimed his love's lips hungrily. Yuri smiled against his lips and kissed back, deepening the kiss.

They were so lost in each other that they didn't even hear the knocking against the door. They froze when they heard the door open and a familiar voice rise in the room. "Hey guys! It's late and I was wondering if you'd like –"

Karol stood frozen in place, his mouth wide open as he took in the scene before him; Flynn on top of Yuri, both men barely covered by the sheets of the bed. The two of them were looking at him with a faint blush over their cheeks. Karol also took notice of the discarded clothing on the floor and the strange smell in the room. Despite Karol's lack of understanding in that area, he didn't need a more detailed picture to know what Flynn and Yuri were doing and what they had obviously done during the night.

A dark blush tinged his cheeks. "– to eat breakfast." He finished his sentence after that long pause, his blush darkening. He turned around and deftly ran out of the room.

It took Yuri and Flynn several seconds to regain themselves. Flynn turned his gaze on Yuri and he smiled deviously. "That's one less to worry about." Yuri shook his head in embarrassment. "You're right, but I'm afraid we've scared him for life..."

Flynn went on to his earlier activities and went to ravish Yuri's neck. "Let's see the bright side, shall we? We've just began his sexual education with some practical lessons. It's time he begins to learn of these... pleasurable sins." He said between kisses and bites. Yuri bit back a moan at Flynn's pleasurable attentions and laughed wholeheartedly. "You're a devil. Nobody would guess that behind your angelic looks, you're even worse than me."

Flynn stopped his ministrations and got eye level with Yuri. His hand found Yuri's and he intertwined their fingers. He looked lovingly at his childhood friend. "But you love me that way, don't you?" He asked with mischief. Yuri smiled mysteriously. "I don't remember ever saying that." He replied on the same playful tone. Flynn caressed his cheek and leaned his forehead against Yuri's. "I happen to have the useful ability of reading into people's minds." He whispered near his love's lips. Yuri smiled brightly, a sight that melted the commandant's heart. He circled Flynn's neck and brought him closer. "Is that so? You're just full of surprises." He whispered back before claiming once more the lips of his commandant.

Yuri knew that he would never forget what had happened with Zagi. He would forever bear the scars that he had inflicted upon him. But he hoped that one day, the memories would be nothing but a distant nightmare. This was a heavy burden to carry by himself. But Yuri wasn't alone. He had Flynn. His sun, his light.

The light that could dispel his darkness and make the sun shine brighter than ever.

The end

A/N: There you go... I'm realy satisfied with this story, and I hope you'll all be too. It was a real pleasure writing this one. :)

Thank you again to everyone that read this story! Feel free to leave comments if you'd like!

Until next time!