Evanescent Regret

By Elderwolves

Disclaimer: I, Elderwolves, do not claim in any way, shape, or form to own any of the characters (in part or in whole) of "Junjou Romantica" that I did not think up. If I did, I would be making tons of cash and very happy with the way I do it, Nowaki and Hiroki would be the main stars (nothing against you Misaki, Usagi-san, Miyagi, and Shinobu).

a/n: First of all, if I get the guts do add a little spice to this, the rating might change. You've read the summary, so that's that. Yes, there will be POV changes, and no I'm not going to write when they will be, you have eyes and can see for yourself. There will be supporter stories later on, but for now just focus on this plot. If you don't understand something, pm me and I will write you back and act accordingly. For now, enjoy.

Chapter 1

Hiroki was coming home after a long day at the university, and longed for nothing more than to see his infrequent lover. He was tired, aggravated, and disgruntled. Almost all of Hiroki's class had chosen today to forget to do their homework, pass notes, and text during his lessons. This resulted in most of them getting books thrown at them or sent out. Only the knowledge that it was the last class before summer break began saved his sanity for the rest of the day. Professor Miyagi was being even more annoyi- (whoops) hyper than was the norm and was swarming around Hiroki with all the ferocity of a bee on steroids. Not to mention his brat came by while he was doing this and started yelling at the both of them and giving Miyagi a long lecture on faithfulness. Once he saw that Shinobu was no longer paying any attention to him, he crept over to his computer to finish his work so he could leave.

Regardless of the fact that this is a daily occurrence, today it just seemed to wear him down. All he wanted to do was snuggle with Nowaki on the couch and complain about his day so he could make it better; not like he would ever admit to it, of course. And if the young doctor even tried to suggest such a thing, he would be mercilessly pummeled with books, pillows, chopsticks, or anything that happened to be handy at the time. He did have his pride after all.

"Hey, HEY! Hiroki, wait up!" He turned to see a woman running up the apartment complex's stairway toward him. She had the exact same face as him, but with longer hair tied into a high ponytail so that the end of her hair barely reached her shoulders. "Oh hello, Hikari." He hugged her. "It's been such a long time, twin. Why don't you come in have some tea? We can discuss the reason for your visit later." She gave a gentle smile then gestured ahead.

As they approached the door to their joint apartment he could hear a strange thump from behind the door, followed by a thump from what sounded like the entranceway wall. Confusedly, Hiroki took out his key and opened the door… only to drop his bag at the scene he found.

Nowaki, his Nowaki, was pinning someone with blonde hair to the wall with his lips plastered to theirs. They jumped away from each other as soon as they realized the door was open. Nowaki's eyes widened at being caught and wondered why there were two Hiroki's standing in the doorway. Hiroki's eyes narrowed when he realized the blonde was actually Tsumori. He looked to both, and pointed at Tsumori. "You… get out." The blonde looked between them then slowly walked outside and closed the door behind him. 'No use letting the neighbors hear.' He thought as he left, 'I wonder what's going to happen.'

Hikari was watching this all with a look of disbelief and worry on her face. She knew about Hiroki and Nowaki, but she also knew that what they had just witnessed was very upsetting for him. She could sense the feelings of sadness, anger, hurt, and betrayal rolling off of Hiroki in waves. That was their advantage as twins; they could read each other's thoughts and emotions as easily as if they were their own. She knew the moment he fell in love with that Akihiko boy, and then when he fell in love with Nowaki. Now all she felt from him was pain… and it angered her to the point of becoming bloodthirsty.

"Hiro-san, it's not what it looks like, "Began Nowaki. "Don't." Hiroki was looking down. "Just listen... That first time, when I found you both on the floor, I accepted your explanation. I took it at face value, because I trusted you. You had a good explanation, and followed it up by offering to share this apartment with me, because you wanted to further our relationship. I was pacified and happy, like you wanted." He started to shake. "But tell me, what possible excuse can you have for holding that man and kissing him? What possible reason can you have for this?" Nowaki was taken aback, he said this all softly around an audible lump in his throat. He should have yelled at him, called him an idiot, thrown something at him, all of that Nowaki could take; but the sad and defeated tone in his voice was breaking his heart. All he wanted to do was hold him close and tell him it would all be alright. He lowered his head to get a look at Hiroki's face and was shocked to find tears. "H…Hiro-san…" Nowaki tried to reach for him but was stunned when the Hiroki-look-alike grabbed his arm and flung it away from them.

Nowaki glared, "Who are you, and why are you stopping me from comforting my Hiro-san?" He demanded. She straightened herself, "I am Hiroki's only sibling and twin sister. I, my good sir, am Kamijou Hikari. As for your question…" She narrowed her eyes into a murderous glare, "you have lost any and all rights to touch my brother or call him yours. Try to do so again and I will not hesitate to tear off that hand and feed it to you with great pleasure, but as a doctor I figure you would prefer to keep your hands." Hikari turned to Hiroki, with sad eyes. "Twin, I know that you're hurting right now and need some time to let this all sink in. I came here today to see if you would come to stay with Grandfather, Matsuda, and I back at the Village. We figured that with it being the start of summer break you would be overly stressed and might like to come home to rest and relax." She turned to glare once more at Nowaki, "As it would seem, I couldn't have come at a better time." Hikari leveled understanding eyes with Hiroki's. "Why don't you go and pack your things? I'll stand watch out here and help you get them to the station."

Nowaki was in a state of shock but came to his senses at that last part. He glared at her. "Hiro-san doesn't need to pack anything! He is staying here!" Hiroki said nothing, but went and did as Hikari requested. When Nowaki tried to follow, she blocked his way. He was trying to find a way around her without hurting her when Hiroki came back out… with all of his things packed into the suitcases he usually used for business trips. He was closing his phone. "I called both Professor Miyagi and Akihiko and asked them to come by later and sort through the books and deliver mine to my storage unit a few miles away as a favor. Those idiots owe me that much after that incident at the school's festival their brats caused." He said with a tired voice. "I put my stamp on the inside of each so there shouldn't be a problem." Nowaki's mouth dropped. "Hiro-san! You're really going to leave?" Now Hiroki looked him dead in the eyes, "I can't stay here. Not after that. I was always suspicious of that guy, but did nothing because you told me there was nothing between you. In the end, we all know who the real fool was, don't we? But…" he gave Hikari a sad smile. "I've still got my pride, and you have your career. I'm leaving; I won't get in your way anymore. You're probably better off with him anyway." That was all Hiroki said as a lone tear slid down his pale cheek. He walked past Nowaki with his bags and out the door. Nowaki tried to follow but was surprisingly knocked to the ground by the fragile looking woman in front of him. As he struggled to rise, she closed the door behind herself and her brother. Hiroki was already walking down the stairs.

She placed her hand on the lock of the door, and a pale violet light shone out of it. The door, no matter whether it was locked or not, would not open from either side until an hour has passed; and by then, they would be long gone. The knob began to franticly turn and pounding could be heard as Nowaki struggled to open the door. "Hiro-san!" He called out repeatedly. She leaned in close to the keyhole, "You are disgraceful, cheating on Hiroki then expecting him to stay! You have no one to blame but yourself. YOU DON'T DESERVE HIM!" She yelled the last part, and then followed her twin brother down the stairs.

Nowaki stopped his struggles for a moment to rest; the door just wouldn't open. All the while he knew his precious lover was getting farther and farther away from him with each passing moment. He jumped at this thought and began forcefully beating the door in a futile attempt to escape. Why… why didn't he reject Tsumori-sempi when he had the chance? Nowaki didn't even have any romantic feelings towards his sempi. So why had he accepted in the first place? He couldn't even remember. "HIRO-SAN!" It took him so long to find him, the love of his life. So why did he risk losing him like this? Now it wasn't even a risk, but a reality. The very thought of being left behind by the brunette was enough to make his heart stop for a moment. When he had first met him, he had been crying because Usami-sensei had rejected him. Right then, Nowaki had fallen for him entirely, determined to make him his. Then after Hiro-san tried to leave him, he had done everything in his power to get him back. When Nowaki had found the Professor trying to kiss his Hiro-san, it had him seeing red and craving violence in the worst possible way. Even now, if either Usami-san or Professor Miyagi is brought up, he would have terrible fits of jealousy.

He knew that Hiro-san would never cheat on him, and loved him all the more for it. Not that it made worried him any less. How hypocritical that with all that resentment, it would be him that cheated on his lover. Nowaki had never meant for all this to happen, but it had and spiraled out of control before he could stop it. He had to get out of there; he had to find Hiro-san, had to apologize for cheating, and had to beg him for a second chance. With this thought in mind, he threw all of his bulk into the door one last time when the door finally opened. It had taken him about an hour to get out, but now he couldn't see them anywhere.

Nowaki began to panic, but calmed himself enough to think straight. He replayed the scene in his head when he finally had an idea. "We figured that with it being the start of summer break you would be overly stressed and might like to come home to recharge." That's what she said, so that must be where they went. They must have gone to Hiro-san's parent's house. Nowaki ran back inside the house and grabbed some money and his coat. '"Why don't you go and pack your things? I'll stand watch out here and help you get them to the station." 'They must have taken the subway,' He thought as he ran back out. 'I can talk to him, get him to come home.' He hailed a taxi and gave the name of the subway station to the driver. "Hiro-san, I'm coming for you." He murmured.

Unbeknownst to Nowaki, Hiroki and Hikari were currently riding the train south while he rode the subway north. Even by train it was going to be a long ride, so they were resting in their compartment for the whole trip. Hikari was holding a weeping Hiroki as he cried his sorrows away. "Shhhh… its okay, let it out." She soothed. Hikari had never in her life seen him so… broken. Even after that incident with that Akihiko guy he hadn't been THIS upset. But then, Hiroki hadn't really believed that little scheme of his would work in the first place. He hoped, sure, but he knew the odds of it working when he tried it. But it was far worse this time; he has been betrayed by the one person he trusted and loved with all of his heart, someone who he thought loved him equally and would never hurt him, but did just that. Now the pain was taking its toll on him.

'By now the spell would have worn off.' Hikari thought. She looked down at her brother's head in her lap to find he had cried himself to sleep. He was tossing and turning, whimpering pitifully. "No….waki…" He said through more tears. 'Doesn't matter now, he won't ever see Hiroki again if I have my way.' She leaned over him and placed her hand on his temple. Hikari closed her eyes and focused, and then felt all of Hiroki's sadness, pain, and heartbreak hit her mind like a ton of bricks. Tears began slowly welling in her eyes as Hiroki finally laid still and slept peacefully. Another blessing of having twin telepathy was that whenever one was in unbearable agony, the other could shoulder half the pain or, in this case, all of it. In this way, twins could look after each other. This way, they would never, ever be alone in life. But the cost of this was that the moment one of them died so to would the other in twenty-four hours. But that was a price Hikari would gladly pay to be able to take away Hiroki's pain, even for a short while.

She shifted a little to grab her phone from her pocket. After a few rings, a man picked up the call. "Hello?" Matsuda's soft voice drifted to her. Hikari smiled to herself, the sound of her husband's caring voice could always lift her spirits. "Hello dear, it's Hikari. I've got Hiroki and we're coming back home." She said. "Hikari, is there something wrong? You sound like you've been crying." It sounded like he was about to panic. "I'm alright, but something bad happened to Hiroki after I found him." She explained everything that had occurred. Matsuda listened to all of this in silence, already knowing about Hiroki being gay, but respecting him too much to care. After all, the three of them had known each other since they were small. In the end Hikari finished her story with a shake of her head, "And that's why we need to make him feel at home when he gets there. Just like old times. He's been extremely hurt emotionally, but he's not fragile. He has too much pride to accept being treated like that, and we both know he's anything in the world except for weak." "Understood. At least he'll be able to heal here. The mountain takes care of its people, if no one else. I'll go ahead and inform Grandfather of this; and if that guy even TRIES to get up here, we'll know." He said, practically spitting venom at the last part. Matsuda was now very pissed after hearing everything. "We'll be waiting for you when you get off the bus. Bye." Hikari smiled, "Bye, I miss you already." Matsuda chuckled, "Miss you too." Then the line clicked dead. Hikari looked down at her sleeping twins face and thought about what the little surprise waiting for him when they got to Bluestar Mountain. A small smile spread across her face.

Nowaki was walking, practically running, down the street. His breathing was ragged and his eyes were wild. People who saw him coming cleared the way immediately; he looked like he just saw hell and it was coming to get him. He eventually reached his destination by asking a few, very concerned looking, neighborhood residents. He finally stood gazing at the decent sized, orderly looking dwelling with 'Kamijou House' printed neatly in formal kanji on the side of the fencepost. In his anxious state, he slammed open the gateway and flew to the front door. Just as he was about to knock, the door was opened from the inside and an agitated, middle aged woman emerged. She looked up at him with unconcealed annoyance, though she spoke politely. "May I help you?" Nowaki looked at her slightly faded auburn hair, chocolate eyes, and stern countenance and assumed her to be Hiro-san's mother. But he needed to be sure. "Um… excuse me for asking but are you Ayaka-san?" She narrowed her eyes, "Who are you to be asking and why would you want to know?" He was slightly amused; she was acting much like Hiro-san would. "I'm asking because I am looking for Hiroki; I am his roommate (he balked at the word), Kusama Nowaki." She finally reacted when he said her son's name, now with a twinge of worry under her irritation. If possible her glare narrowed further, "Please come with me." She turned and headed back inside the house. Nowaki hurriedly followed, not daring to lose sight of her in case he got lost in the big house. She led him into a large sitting room and told him to stay.

A few minutes passed until she returned, bringing with her a tall man with warm brown hair and eyes to match. They both sat down across from Nowaki, the man seemed to think for a while before speaking. "Hello, my name is Kamijou Sora, Hiroki's father. Young man, what is this I hear about you looking for Hiroki? If you truly are his roommate than wouldn't you know best?" Nowaki began to fidget in his seat, "It…. It's a little bit embarrassing, um…" Sora could see his hesitation and took pity on him. "Ayaka dear, if you wouldn't mind, could you please fetch us all some drinks? I'm feeling very parched and this young man may need to wet his whistle as his throat seems to be very dry." She nodded then, with a wary glance back, left the two men to their own devices. Sora then looked back to Nowaki with a serious expression. "Listen, you can tell me anything, especially when it concerns my children. I can guarantee that there is nothing you can say about them that I didn't already know." Nowaki was very doubtful of that, "Anything?" Sora sighed, "I will not tell their secrets, but let's do this… I know how he used to feel about that boy he used the hang around. What was his name again… oh yes, Akihiko! That's how well I know them." He smiled to himself. Nowaki was gobsmacked, "You know he's…?" He asked. "Well, yes. I could see the signs, and I knew before he did!" He laughed. But then his laughter died. "So why have you really come here?" Nowaki explained everything that had happened and his true relationship with his Hiro-san. When he had finished he looked up to find both anger and calculation in his eyes.

"Do you regret what you did to him?" Sora asked coldly, looking at him for any signs of lying. Nowaki nodded. He sighed, "Good thing I believe you, otherwise I would have to seriously hurt you." He chuckled. "Well…," said Sora as he leaned back. "He isn't here, but that doesn't surprise me. I may know about his preference, but Ayaka doesn't. And may the spirits help us when she finds out!" He shuddered. "He's hurting, thanks to you. He wouldn't be able to heal here because he would have to hide it from her. Additionally, if Hikari took him somewhere this would be the last place she'd take him." He said. Sadness was evident in his tone. Nowaki became curious. "Why wouldn't she come here? Isn't this her home as well?" "No, it isn't. The Kamijou's are actually mountain people, I met Hiroki's mother, Ayaka, while on an expedition on Bluestar Mountain, which is hundreds of miles from here. We got married there and had both Hiroki and Hikari. The locals there don't take kindly to outsiders and only let them marry their own if they abide by two conditions: the outsider must take the Kamijou name and must abide by all of their traditions. This way, they are no longer outsiders, but a true Kamijou. This was even more important in our case, due to the fact that she is the Village Head's daughter. But even if we leave, we are still locals of the mountain, the same being said for Hiroki, who stayed there for the better part of his childhood.

"One of the traditions they have is that the children all stay in the nursery until they reach ten years of age. During that time, they will complete training to become properly installed as a productive citizen to their village." He looked extremely nostalgic as he explained this. One could easily tell that he enjoyed his stay there. As suddenly as it had happened, it went away. He looked tired and sad again. "But when they were both nine years old, something bad happened to them. Ayaka and I had moved to this house beforehand, and left them in the village to complete the tradition. So we didn't learn until later and the villagers refused to tell us what had happed to them. We waited a year to see if they would recover, but they both seemed to be depressed. Hiroki had the worst of it. They were almost never apart after that, so we decided it would be best to separate them. So one day, we went back to the village to take Hiroki back with us. Hikari was going to stay with Ayaka's father." He sighed and sat forward. "Big mistake…"

"The day we took him home with us was horrible. The moment we pulled Hiroki's hand out of hers, they both started struggling. Ayaka had to hold Hikari down while I dragged Hiroki away, who was screaming and crying by then. I'd never seen them react like that. It was almost as if they were terrified of losing sight of the other. When we got back, Hiroki locked himself in his room and refused to come out. He ignored any food we left for him, and we could hear him cry at night. Sometimes at night we would wake up to hear him screaming. We would run to his room to see him thrashing around on his bed, struggling as if he were fighting for his life. After nights like that, he wouldn't come out at all that day. Whatever happened to them…," he glared at Nowaki, "Didn't leave them unscarred. To this day, I regret taking them away from each other. As it would turn out, they were comforting each other in their own way. I don't think they ever forgave us for that. Hiroki eventually got better after a while after we buried him in lessons, books, and after school activities. We thought he was going to burst with all the stuff we made him study; but he needed to keep his mind off the past and build his social skills, he was always staying away from people because he was taught to avoid outsiders. He finally moved on from whatever had happened, more so after he met Usami Akihiko."

Sora leaned back again, "So if you heard them say that their going home, then they probably went back to the mountains. They always felt more comfortable there." Nowaki was shocked to say the least. What could have happened to make a proud man like Hiro-san break down like that? Whatever it was must have been terrible. He looked to Sora and saw him push something across the table toward him. He picked it up to find it was a map of Japan with Bluestar Mountain highlighted in red. He stood and bowed to the older man. "Thank you, very much! I must be going now," Nowaki turned to leave. "Kusama, you had best mind yourself. I may not have been born with them, but I damn well know how to use a sword like the rest of them. Remember that the next time you try to hurt him again, idiot." Nowaki bowed again, smiling at the familiar remark. "I will; thank you." As he left the room, he almost ran into Ayaka. "Leaving already?" He bowed to her. "Yes, I'm sorry. But there is something important that I need to do, please excuse me." And Nowaki ran out of the house and back down the street.

Ayaka watched him go then returned to the room with her husband still in it. "Honey…," She said with a sadistic smile on her face. "Would you like to tell me something?"He turned extremely pale at her sweet tone. She placed the tea on the table and sat across from him. Sora thought he was going to faint from blood loss in his head when she pulled out her katana from somewhere in her kimono and began to polish it. "Well? ~" The sadistic smile never left her face.

Hikari was looking out her window when she saw their stop approaching. She leaned over the still sleeping figure in her lap, "Hiroki, Hiroki wake up!" She said. When he didn't move, she smirked to herself. "Well, I tried." Hikari said with a shrug, promptly shoving him off her lap. He hit the ground with an echoing thud, and jackknifed into a sitting position. "HEY! What the hell was that for?" She hopped up and grabbed their bags, "Here's our stop! Come on, get up." He stood and took some of the bags from her. "You couldn't find a nicer way to wake me up? I mean, seriously!" They got off the train and started walking toward the bus station. Hiroki's face slowly began to fall as he began remembering why he was there. Hikari noticed this and thought about ways to cheer him up even after they boarded the bus. Then she thought of something.

"Hey Hiroki," she began, "You realize that you're going to be staying in the main house with us, right?" He looked confused. "Yeah, that's how it usually is. Why?" Hikari looked back her window. "Oh, no reason. Just thought you'd like to know that there will actually be one more person staying with us, someone you didn't get to meet last time you visited five years ago…" Hiroki was now extremely confused. Last time he visited it was a special occasion, Hikari was feeling sick and throwing up for a while and needed taking care of, but there weren't any new arrivals at the village… new arrivals… 'NO WAY!' He stared at her. "Hikari, are you telling me…" She stood up again. "We're here!" Turning, she grabbed more bags and hurried off the bus. Hiroki was pissed at not getting his answer, so grabbed the remaining bags and ran after her. "KAMIJOU HIKARI, GET YOUR ASS BACK HERE AND ANSWER ME!" He found her stopped at the archway marking the beginning of the trail leading to the village. Just inside it was parked a jeep containing the smiling face of Matsuda. He walked up to him and patted his back. "Hey, Brother! Good to see you, an old face is always welcome." Matsuda said.

Suddenly Hiroki was knocked to the ground from behind. He turned and saw a little girl with charcoal black hair, not unlike Matsuda's, tied up in a ponytail and with the same hazel eyes he had, sitting on his back. She couldn't have been more than seven years old. The little girl looked up at Matsuda and said the strangest thing Hiroki had ever heard: "Daddy is this him? Is this Uncle Hiroki? He looks like Momma, but he's a boy!" She giggled. Hiroki watched as Matsuda nodded, he turned to Hikari and saw her trying to stifle her laughter and failing. She looked at him and nodded. He picked the little girl up and sat cross legged so she could sit in front of him. She beamed at him and looked him dead in the eye, "Hello, Uncle Hiroki, my name is Kamijou Yumi. I am five years old, and am very pleased to meet you." She said and bowed. So she was five, not seven. He was speechless, so he looked to his sister for guidance. She chuckled and pointed to the spot beside Yumi. There, on a cloth so as not to be dirtied, was a book. Or three, to be exact. He was screwed. He had a niece, he had a niece that loved to read books, he had a niece that loved to read books that he didn't want to ignore or throw a book at. And she. Was. ADORABLE! Oh, Nowaki would love this sweet, little-

'Oh… I guess not,' Thought Hiroki. Hikari felt all of the thoughts her brother was having about her daughter and was on the verge of falling to the ground in laughter until that last part. Then she remembered: Nowaki was a pediatrician. Damn. She shared a look with her husband. He called, "Yumi, wasn't there something we wanted to say to Uncle Hiroki?" She looked at her father, and ran back to him. Hikari stood beside Matsuda with Yumi between them. "Welcome home!" They all cheered. Hiroki didn't know why, but this little display helped ease the pain a little. He stood up from his place on the ground. "Well are we going back to the village or are we going to stand around here like a bunch of fools all night?" Hiroki said good-naturedly. The three adults laughed while Yumi looked on with a look of confusion.

They threw the bags in the back of the jeep with Yumi, and began the long drive up the side of the mountain. Yumi, still confused about earlier, leaned over to Hiroki. "Uncle Hiroki, Mommy said that you teach about Japanese books and stories. Is that really true?"She asked, wide-eyed. He chuckled, "Yes, it is. Why?" "Um… what is a fool?" She looked really shy. Hiroki was thinking of the best way to explain it to her when an idea struck him. He reached into one of his bags and pulled out an old, beaten Japanese dictionary. He turned to her, "Yumi, this is a dictionary. If you ever need to know what a word means, you look it up in here and it will tell you. I used this when I was little, so take good care of it. But don't be afraid to ask me anything, okay?" She nodded enthusiastically and fell into the backseat to study the old, but well used book with the same love and care in her eyes that he did. Hikari took one of the books out of his bag too and hit him over the head with it. "Hey, don't go teaching my daughter bad words! I don't care if you are a teacher!" She yelled playfully, still hitting him over the head with his own book. "Stop, stop! I surrender!" Matsuda growled and wrapped one arm around the waist of his wife. "Hey, would you quit? I'm trying to drive!" Who was he kidding? Even Yumi heard the amusement in his voice. 'After all these years, it's good to have the old gang back together.' He thought. 'Even if it is for such depressing reasons.'

They were nearing the village when they saw the outline of the village's small garage where the few cars they drove were kept along with the old prison cart where they would put trespassers and lawbreakers until they could be delivered to the dungeon to await trial. Everyone got out and walked over to the neighboring stables. Cars were not allowed in the actual village, but almost everyone old enough had their own horse to ride, others were too young and just walked. As they approached, a black mustang and two identical brown mares ran towards them. The mustang went over to Matsuda, who immediately mounted. Yumi ran over to them, "Daddy, can I ride with you?" "It's 'may I ride with you,'" Called Hiroki next to a giggling Hikari. She pouted but did as she was told. Matsuda hoisted her up and galloped away with her in front of him on old Black Hoof. The two mares were identical in every way except for the fact that one had a white patch of fur over its left eye; the other had one on its right. The one with the left patch was Hiroki's horse, Fury. The other was Hikari's horse named Spitfire. They both tied on their bags and began trotting toward the village.

They were talking about trivial matters, everyday life and the latest news in the village. After a while, Hiroki noticed that Hikari was taking great pains not to mention anything about his home life. Especially a certain navy haired doctor. Finally he couldn't take it anymore. He sighed, "I understand you don't want to upset me, and I appreciate it, but my god! Even if you talk about Nowaki, I'm alright!" She looked doubtful. "Hiroki… are you alright?" He sighed and sagged in his seat. "No, I'm not alright." He looked her dead in the eye with a smile. "But I will be, with time. Don't worry, I promise." She could feel his honesty and see it in his eyes, and smiled back. This would not break him, he would be fine. Nowaki had done a lot of damage, but Hiroki was stronger than that. No matter what, Hiroki would survive. She was sure of it. These were her thoughts as they went under the final gates of the Village, they were finally home.

Hiroki was now standing in his and his sister's old room, still the same as when they left; it was just his now that Hikari's sharing a room with Matsuda next door. Even after all these years, he still felt at peace here. On his bed were a brown haori, gray hakamas, along with a dark brown obi; formal enough for the Village Head's grandson, casual enough to be worn daily. And sitting on top of these was his old katana. Hiroki looked at the foot of his bed and, sure enough, there was a pair of tabi socks and some light wooden sandals. He picked the katana up and pulled it out of its sheath to see it in the dying sunlight. It was still in good condition, and it fit in his hand even better now that he was a full grown man. It was the same sword that he had always used since he was a child, but wasn't the proper size for one. Everything he had been taught with it was what made him able to use it well then, and better than that now. All of the children were taught to fight like adults, even to the point of being able to beat the average warrior. This was especially true of those of the main house in the village. The sheath was a made of warm pinewood, the metal at its top had the soft indent of a hawk with a lightning bolt running through it. It was the symbol of the Storm Hawks, which was the old nickname his old teacher had given he and his sister during their training. Such fond memories still brought a smile to his face. Chuckling to himself, he picked up the clothing and went to the bathroom to change. He was to meet his grandfather soon.

"Hello, Grandfather. It has been quite some time, but I can see you are well," He said as he approached. Hiroki knelt down in front of him. "Hiroki! No need to be so formal with your own grandfather! Thank you, I'm feeling very well now that you mention it. But I hear that you could use a little distracting from your troubles as of late." His grandfather had been Village Head for many years, and a faithful warrior his entire life before hand. His actual name was Kamijou Kouta, but no one calls him that much anymore since his wife died except for his old friends that still remain. His old, kind face was smiling gently at him, very understanding of the situation. He was in the same position when Grandmother had died, and his children and grandchildren had done their damnedest to get his mind off it and help him out of his depression.

"Thank you, Grandfather. I appreciate you sending Hikari my way, she was a great help when I found out about… what was going on." The Village Head was one of the few people who knew about him being gay. He didn't shun him or try to change him, and he was thankful for that, but that still didn't stop him from nearly having a heart attack when Hiroki told him.

His smile faded a little. "Hiroki, what are the chances that he would come looking for you?" He shrugged, "I don't know. Last time I tried to leave him he tracked me down and wouldn't leave me be until I went back to him. He had wanted to work things out then, but I don't know about now. Doesn't the fact that he was cheating on me mean that he's tired of me? But he did try to stop me from leaving our appartment… I guess all I can say is I don't really know." Grandfather nodded. "Do you have his picture on you?" "Um… ah, yes! Here it is." He took the picture out of his wallet and gave it to him. "Just in case he does try to come here, we will alert all of the patrols to keep a special lookout for him." At the look on his face, he amended, "Not to worry, he won't be put into the dungeon, if that's what you're thinking. He will be brought straight here for a hearing, depending on what happens, he can either be let out on his own or tossed out forcefully. How's that sound?" Hiroki was relieved, "Thank you." "Good, you're welcome. Now on to another matter, why don't you go bathe by the waterfall and wash up before dinner? Everyone is eagerly waiting to see you since you've returned." Hiroki smiled and turned to go. "Oh and one more thing! Welcome home, little one." He bowed and left. "Thank you… for everything."

He spent the rest of the night eating, training, and speaking to old friends. Before he knew it, he was in his bed thinking about the day's events. 'Maybe I'll get better faster than I thought. Tomorrow is a new day and I've cried enough, it's time to get on with my life. But I can't help but wonder what Nowaki's doing now.' Where his last thoughts as his eyes drifted closed and he became lost to the world of dreams.

Meanwhile, Nowaki was currently sitting in his compartment on the train thinking about Hiro-san and what he would say and do to bring him home. Suddenly his phone began to ring, and he leapt for it thinking that maybe Hiro-san had already forgiven him and was calling to say he was coming home. He was severely disappointed and more than slightly annoyed when the caller I.D. said it was Tsumori-sempi calling. Normally he isn't aggressive, especially towards his sempi; but at the moment he wasn't seeing the name of his sempi, but the name of the man who drove his Hiro-san away from him. He flipped it open anyway. "Yes?" "Nowaki, why aren't you at the hospital? You can't just not come into work like that! Our bosses are very angry you haven't shown up without so much as an explanation. Besides, I'm awfully lonely by myself here. Want to meet up somewhere? If that guy has already left, perhaps we can meet at your place. Whad'ya say?" Now Nowaki was pissed. "Tsumori-sempi, I know for a fact you're lying. I called them myself to tell them I'm taking my week vacation. I'm on my way to Bluestar Mountain where Hiro-san is so I can beg his forgiveness. I don't want to meet with you like that anymore, goodbye." "Eeehh?" Click. Nowaki turned off his phone and closed it. He decided to get some sleep while he waited to see Hiro-san again. He laid back and dreamt of nothing but a cute devil-of-a-professor with brown hair and eyes.

a/n: Well, that was the first chapter of Evanescent Regret! Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed yourself. What will happen once Nowaki gets there? Review and you might find out in the next chapter...