.disclaimer: don't own.

.warning : this story will contain suicide attempt(s), starting with this chapter ; not a light story.

.chapter one : to sasori no danna.


"My time has come, and so I'm gone. To a better place, far beyond. I love you all as you can see. But it's better now, because I'm free."

-Traci Kornhauser


10:57 PM, November 17

As long as Sasori had known Deidara, the blonde was always a happier person than he was.

Sasori was the one that wanted to spend every night at home and brood about something; Deidara was the one that dragged him out. When they were little and in kindergarten, Sasori was the one that colored with dark crayons and Deidara used bright colors. Sasori smiled so rarely and fleetingly, and Deidara seemed to smile eternally, an ironic contrast to their views on art.

So to be in the hospital and to have a doctor tell Sasori that Deidara was the one that just almost took his own life was so wrong.

"Akasuna-san, your friend tried to commit suicide with a strong intention of succeeding. As you know, he lost a large amount of blood from self inflicted cuts on his wrists. We also discovered a high level of alcohol in his system as well as several sleeping pills. We will be keeping him under surveillance and suggest he be transferred to a psychiatric ward once deemed fit to leave here."

Sasori felt chills run through his body at the words. This was so wrong; why would Deidara of all people do this? He heard murmurs behind him and felt the strong hand of Hoshigaki Kisame on his shoulder; all of their friends were here. He felt so numb and the words sounded so distant. He heard them but they weren't registering; he just couldn't believe that this was the truth. The minute Deidara was rushed off to surgery and he was in the waiting room, he called everyone. He only said one word, which was 'hospital', but the tone of his voice was enough reason for them to drop whatever they were doing and rush over.

"Sasori, you should wash your hands," came a voice from behind him that he recognized as Zetsu. The words were blunt but he heard the worry and gentleness in the tone. Looking down at his hands, Sasori grimaced as he saw blood all over his hands and sleeves; some even on his shirt for when he discovered his best friend on the edge of a bathtub, the water red and murky. His mind instantly went into panic mode and anything he learned about making sure a scene was safe and crap went right out the window; he immediately grabbed the blonde, applied pressure to the cuts that would eventually make him puke in the hospital bathrooms, and dialed for help. His brain wasn't able to keep up and it was only now that every emotion was drowning him. When he first saw Deidara, all he felt was numbness; pure numbness. He felt nothing, he comprehended nothing; fear was vaguely recognized but it was as if everything he was doing was in a haze. But now, at the hospital, everything was clear as day and it almost physically pained him to think back.

Why?

He felt numb as Kakuzu pushed him gently and they walked together towards the nearest bathroom. Sasori was known to be able to solve any question within seconds of hearing it, but here was one problem that he just couldn't figure out, no matter from what perspective he approached it. A freshman in college, he deduced, should be vibrant and full of life. True, their gang of eleven (nine freshmen and two juniors) wasn't a ray of sunshine, but they weren't depressed. They agreed that life was a rather depressing situation to be in most of the time, but they certainly never talked about ending it.

And to make it worse, he had known Deidara since they were six. They had met at kindergarten and immediately bonded when they realized their drawings were far superior to the other six year olds'. Their relationship was never peaceful and friendly; they always bickered and fought, but that didn't stop them from becoming best friends. They had grown so close over these last few years; Sasori just couldn't believe how he had missed something so huge. Deidara had to have been showing signs and he couldn't believe how stupid he was to miss them all.

"Why would he do this?"

Kakuzu looked at Sasori in surprise as the redhead began to scrub his hands furiously with the soap until they became red. His hands hovered in front of the red sensor for a few moments before a stream of clean water came out and he rinsed his hands, keeping them under the warm water far longer than necessary. His eyes bore into those of his reflection; his mind was obviously elsewhere. Kakuzu watched Sasori; it almost pained him to see how vulnerable and broken he seemed. The dark eyes of the other man blinked and softened, looking away. "…I really don't know."

"Why didn't he tell me?"

"Don't blame yourself," he glanced at Sasori again, who shook his hands lightly and left the sink to hit the button on the hand drier irritably. As he absentmindedly dried his hands, the same vacant look was in his brown eyes. He was shaking, Kakuzu noticed, and his eyes looked so fearful. He didn't blame him; if he went to Hidan's apartment to see him almost dead, he would be reacting the same way. He couldn't even begin to imagine that kind of pain and fear of losing the person closest to you; he didn't even want to try to imagine it.

Without warning, he heard a fist collide with the bathroom wall and the sounds of the tiles cracking. He looked at Sasori and wasn't surprised to see him breathing heavily, the fist still pushed against the dent in the wall. He sighed and looked away, crossing his arms. He had a feeling he knew what the reason for Deidara's attempt was but he also knew Deidara would murder him if he told Sasori. All he could hope was that the redhead would figure it out on his own. Sasori was undoubtedly blaming himself for what happened and Kakuzu was more than certain that he couldn't be blamed; even if he did have to do with it, Sasori would not have been the catalyst. Because as far as Kakuzu knew, Sasori was one of the best things that Deidara thought ever happened to him.

"Come on, let's go fix up your hand," Kakuzu pushed himself off the wall and motioned towards the door. After a moment, Sasori walked towards it and yanked it open with his good hand, leaving a trail of droplets of blood from his other hand. Kakuzu carefully navigated it around it and followed his friend through the hospital corridors as they made their way back to the waiting room. As Sasori heard his shoes tap against the clean floor and the smell of a hospital overwhelm him, his mind replayed the scenario that he was sure to remember for the rest of his life…

Seven hours earlier, 3:03 PM, November 17

"Brat? Don't keep me waiting!" Sasori yelled and kicked the door to Deidara's apartment. He scowled when he heard no response and checked his cell phone. He and Deidara had decided to go out and watch a movie tonight and Sasori was to pick his friend up at 3:00 so they would have ample time to walk over to the theatre. It was Friday and they had just had tests in almost all of their classes, resulting in a weekend free of homework. They decided to take advantage of this by going to the theatre and talking about the lack of artistic talent during the production; it was one of their favorite things to do together.

What was strange was that Deidara was late; he, as Akasuna Sasori's best friend, was well aware of the fiery temper and the consequences. He would never be late unless for a good reason and because of that, Sasori gave Deidara an extra two and a half minutes before he would leave. But it had been about three minutes and Sasori's patience, even the extra for Deidara, was diminishing quickly. He scowled and pulled out his phone, his mind already coming up with several scathing remarks to make when Deidara did finally opened his door.

But when he read the text on the rectangular screen, all anger and annoyance dissipated immediately.

Danna:

Goodbye and thank you for everything.

–Deidara

It took Sasori exactly four seconds to regain sense in his body. He took a step back and kicked the door open, ignoring the curious heads peeking out of the surrounding apartments. As he ran into the dimly lit apartment, he looked for any signs of the blonde hair, hoping that the text was a sick joke. He wanted nothing more than for the bright smile to appear and apologize; he wanted absolutely nothing more than to beat him up. As his head snapped to his left and right, his eyes widened desperately, hoping to see him. With each passing second, he was beginning to feel more lightheaded and he felt he was going to pass out any minute now. But still, he forced himself to run through the small apartment, the adrenaline fueling him.

"D-Deidara! Where the hell are you?"

No answer came, causing Sasori's heart to constrict. After all the other rooms, he immediately turned to the bathroom, cursing himself for not noticing the light on in the closed door. He rattled the doorknob and immediately rammed his shoulder into the door; the pain barely registered in his current hazy state. When the door flew open, he was sure he was just going to collapse.

It took Sasori twelve seconds to tear his eyes away from the scene and move again.

The first thing he saw was the phone left on the sink. The screen was still lit up, giving Sasori hope as he slowly forced his gaze to focus on the limp body slouched over the edge of the white bathtub. It was filled to the brim with water; warm water, Sasori deduced when he saw the right wrist completely submerged in it. The left arm cushioned his face, but the blood from the wounds still ran down the side and the knife was still loosely grasped by the fingers. The face was too peaceful; he looked like he was sleeping. It was when it registered in Sasori's mind that Deidara had lost a lot of blood did he move towards him. Besides the expanding puddle of the red substance on the floor, soaking anything in its way, the water was far too red for Sasori's liking.

"B-brat?" Sasori's trembling legs brought him to right where Deidara was; he still hadn't pulled out his phone in hope that this was a prank. As his hand touched Deidara's face, the younger male made a soft sound and Sasori strained to hear it. Everything seemed to be echoing in Sasori's mind and a much softer sound, but Deidara's voice cut through everything and was clear as day.

"D-danna… thank… you for… everything…"

And that was when it really registered in his mind and he whipped out his cell phone and dialed the police, holding it to his face with his shoulder as he grabbed the nearby towel and pressed it to the wrists. White and black seemed to flash before his eyes and he was trembling as he tried to apply pressure to stop any further blood loss. Before the phone was answered and the towel covered the blood, his eyes saw the deep slashes on the pale skin, blood erupting from the wounds. They were sharp and jagged; it pained Sasori to just think about how he had inflicted these.

"Hello, you've reached 110."

"H-hello? I need an a-ambulance now, my friend just tried to k-kill himself… oh God, send a fucking ambulance n-now!"

11:13 PM, November 17

"So can we see him now or what?"

All eyes looked up at Pein's voice, riveting to a young nurse holding a clipboard. Sasori blinked; he recognized her as Haruno Sakura. Last year when he was still in high school, he often heard jokes that she would be his successor as valedictorian. Other than that he never really spoke to her; she was smart and studious but, unlike him, seemed to be bubbly. They occasionally crossed paths, usually when called to the principal's office for some academic achievement. She seemed pleasant enough but right now she could probably either crush or give Sasori the hope he desperately needed.

"One person," she glanced down at the clipboard and hugged it to her chest, her green eyes darting around before finally landing on Sasori, "Akasuna-san, I think Iwa-san would like to see you the most. And… I'm sorry."

"Tell him we're worried for him, all right?"

Sasori nodded numbly as Kakuzu finished bandaging his hand and he stood up, following Sakura as she led him through the quiet hospital. She was silent during the journey and he was grateful for that; the last thing he wanted was for someone to try to console him, saying stupid lies like "I know how you must feel." Because very few people could say that to Sasori; he was positive that no one would be able to imagine the pain to find your best friend of thirteen years almost dead.

As they approached his room, Sasori's heart seemed to pound harder and he clenched his fists, ignoring the pain that shot through his bandaged one. What was he going to say? He had so many questions but he knew Deidara wouldn't provide nearly enough answers. Sasori remembered learning about depression in psychology; he had read about it several times in many other classes, as well as suicide. It had all seemed so far off, like he would never have to deal with it. But now he had to and it was so surreal; he still couldn't believe this was happening.

"He's in here. He's awake now but doesn't seem to want to talk. If you need anything, just press the red button next to his bed." Sakura had stopped in front of a door and looked at Sasori expectantly.

Sasori nodded quietly again and entered the room, hearing Sakura walk away after a few moments. As the door slowly closed behind him quietly, he froze to his spot and stared straight ahead at Deidara, feeling like it was déjà vu all over again. He wasn't used to seeing Deidara quiet and sullen; he was used to seeing him grinning and being overly obnoxious.

He was sitting up in the bed and seemed to be picking at the bandages around his wrists, the clean white stained by dark crimson. His head was bowed down so strands of blonde hair obscured his face from view and he made no effort to look who had entered. Sasori crossed the distance to the bed and pulled up a chair, sitting down in it and made the accident of looking at his wrist. Deidara had managed to unravel some of the bandages and he could see a pool of blood staining the crisp white hospital sheets. The angry cuts seemed even angrier than before; slashes that Sasori was sure would never completely fade away. It made his stomach lurch just to look at them and Deidara seemed to feel nothing as he stared at them.

"D—brat," he cleared his throat, switching to the nicknamed he had graced the blonde with back when they first met in hopes of making this awkward situation slightly more normal, "…You should leave those alone. They might get infected."

"Always blunt, danna," he heard a dry chuckle. But nonetheless, Deidara listened and rewrapped the bandages, covering the image that would haunt Sasori for weeks to come. They fell quiet and Sasori looked away. It didn't feel any different. Aside from the fact that Deidara was in a hospital bed, it didn't feel like anything different. Sasori so desperately wanted to believe that nothing was wrong but when Deidara started talking, he was pulled back down to the reality that things had changed. "You know what sucks about all this, un?"

"That we missed the movie?" he tried to make a casual joke and heard a soft laugh.

Finally, Deidara straightened up and looked at Sasori. His blue eyes pierced through the dull and limp strands of his hair and with a shock, Sasori noticed how pale and emaciated he seemed suddenly. He remembered that Deidara did begin to eat less, but he assured him that it was because of stress and loss of appetite. Suddenly, he wanted to kick himself for being so moronic.

Those eyes, those baby blue eyes that usually twinkled looked so empty. It was worse than anger and depression; it was like Deidara had absolutely nothing left in him. His eyes weren't vibrant with life anymore because there was no life left within him, and that scared Sasori so much.

"That I can't even kill myself right, un. Three different methods and they all fucking failed."

At the words, Sasori felt chills run through him. The venom lacing his voice, the cold and distant look, the clenched fists; they all made it seem as if he so badly wanted to die. He never even imagined Deidara was this unhappy with his life and suddenly he felt like a horrible friend; he could he have not seen it? Was he being oblivious and selfish? What did he do wrong?

"When I woke up and realized I was in a hospital, I just felt like such a loser, un." Deidara sighed and leaned over away from Sasori towards the small table to his left for the glass of water. Momentarily, Sasori saw the shirt move up slightly to reveal the pale skin of Deidara's hip interrupted by several cuts; some faded, some bright red. Instantly his heart lurched and he tore his eyes away, trying to pretend he never saw it. He would have never imagined that Deidara was self harming; it made this situation so much more surreal. Either he was good at hiding it or Sasori was the most stupid person to ever exist.

"Why… why didn't you tell me?"

He tore his gaze away from his hands on his knees and up to meet Deidara's slightly amused eyes, a soft half-smile tugging at the thin lips. There was a slight emotion to the eyes now; it was just pure, unadultered sadness that pulled at Sasori, knowing he couldn't do anything to alleviate that pain. He so badly wanted to make him feel better but Sasori had no idea what to do. He and Deidara were never particularly open with what they felt; all Sasori knew was that he wanted to fix things but he didn't know how to go about them.

"There's not much to tell, un. I don't want to be "fixed." I don't want you to change your view on me, I don't want false sympathy, I don't want to be treated any differently, un. I'm sorry you had to find out this way but…" Deidara paused and shrugged, tucking a few strands of hair behind his ears and ignoring the lone strands that escaped his fingers, "…it's the truth, un. I'm… I'm just sad, danna. That's the only way I can express it."

"Was it…"

"No," immediately, Deidara's voice cut in as soon as Sasori started asking his question. The two looked at each other and Deidara was the first to break the gaze and he sighed, closing his eyes, "It's not you, un. Don't blame yourself for this; if anything, you helped me to fight it, un. Really, danna. You… you did nothing wrong, un."

Sasori gripped the sheets tightly and bent down so his forehead touched the bed. Deidara glanced at him and smiled sadly, seeing the redhead shaking. Resisting the urge to put an arm around his shoulders, Deidara looked to his left and out the window, seeing only his reflection looking back because of the dark night outside. "Danna, maybe you should leave, un. It's not that I don't want to talk to you it's… I think we both need time. Talk to me tomorrow, all right?"

"…Yeah, that would probably be the best idea," Sasori murmured. He bit his lip as if he was going to say something else but decided against it and stood up, letting the chair scrape again the floor. He turned around and had his hand on the doorknob before pausing. He didn't turn around and Deidara wasn't looking at him, but he spoke anyway.

"…I don't know what I would do if I lost you, you know."

He heard a dry laugh, one laced with sadness. "…Thank you, danna. That means more than you know, un."

He left the room quietly and retraced his steps back to the waiting room, thoughts of his brief conversation with Deidara running through his mind. He felt that in one night Deidara had went through at least twenty years; he looked so much older and so much more cynical. He was beginning to wonder if the bubbly best friend he had known for more than a decade was even there anymore or if feelings of sadness have completely overwhelmed him.

And suddenly, he realized he wanted to change him back to how he was. He wanted to make him happy again and to prove to him that life was worth living; it would be hard considering he wasn't the happiest person either but he had long ago promised himself that since Deidara was his best friend, he would do anything he had to to make him happy. Maybe it wasn't his place, but he really thought that Deidara would eventually thank him.

"So how is he?" Hidan was the first to realize Sasori was back as he pushed himself off of Kakuzu who was acting as his pillow. He rubbed his eyes sleepily as Sasori sat down on the armrest of an empty chair, avoiding Hidan's gaze. The silver haired man seemed to understand and sighed, running his fingers through his slicked hair, causing a few strands to come down messily. "That fuckin' bad, huh? Damn…"

Sasori groaned and rested his forehead against his palms, pushing his hair back. He heard Hidan stand up and sink into the soft chair he was partially on. After a few moments, Hidan shifted his position and draped his arm over Sasori's shoulders; a slightly heavy but comforting weight that dissipated a miniscule amount of the confusion and anger within him.

"We're all shocked, you know. I know as his best friend you feel the worst, like you're the one that's supposed to save him from himself," Hidan started in a low voice and Sasori found himself clinging onto every word, hoping to find a glimmer of hope somewhere in his current morose world, "If you're being a dumbass and blaming yourself, don't. You can bitch at me because they're false words and empty promises, but trust me, you're going to keep hearing that. Don't even fucking think about doing anything as stupid as that idiot did."

"…The first half of that was actually pretty child friendly."

"Just for you, Akasuna," he heard Hidan laugh and couldn't help but let a small smile tug at his own lips. He sighed and bowed his head further, squeezing his eyes shut. Why did you do this? What happened to the person I used to know? Did I have anything to do with it?

"Sleep, all right? You, out of all of us, need sleep. We'll go in and talk to him tomorrow. But close your damn eyes and sleep."

As he heard Hidan turn off the lights of the waiting room and wander back to where he was earlier, Sasori sank into the chair. The darkness suddenly felt suffocating as he tried to make him comfortable on the chair; in the darkness, all he could think about was Deidara. Is this the darkness you imagine yourself in?

It tore him apart, knowing that Deidara was so torn up, angry, and distressed and he couldn't do anything to help. And by not telling him, Sasori couldn't help but wonder why; was it because Deidara didn't trust him enough? Either way, it didn't matter to Sasori; all that seemed to matter was that he felt he was partially at fault. As the best friend he couldn't sense something was wrong; now that he thought about it, he did realize that Deidara opted out of going out with everyone and seemed to be more "tired" lately.

I thought we were best friends.

They met when they were six and have been almost inseparable ever since. They got in fights all the time but they always resolved them. Through elementary school, middle school, and high school, they were always together. Sasori remembered endless nights of teaching Deidara the maths and sciences and Deidara in turn would drag Sasori away from his textbooks have fun. They had discovered their passions of art; Deidara was into sculpting and Sasori found an affinity for puppets. They had dealt with staring at couples in high school hallways and deciding they were disgusting and they would never swap spit that openly in the hallways.

They did date; just not each other. Deidara had a few short relationships and Sasori found himself involved in several flings and one night stands; at least one a week on average. Deidara laughed and called him a player but Sasori smirked and shrugged it off. Their friends had commented how it was ironic that reckless, loudmouth Deidara seemed to be more faithful than quiet, serious Sasori. But, currently, they were both single and perfectly fine with it. They both agreed they didn't need a relationship because those were just distractions.

Where did it all fall apart?

Deidara was loud. Deidara was short tempered. Deidara was bipolar. But he was also eternally optimistic, always finding something to be cheerful apart. So Sasori still couldn't believe that he had fallen into a pit of despair so deep that he honestly saw no way out. He was never one to pry and he knew he had to be delicate with Deidara right now, but he was dying to know. Not to satisfy his own curiosity; his own well being was the last thing on his mind. He wanted to know so he could help Deidara; it had taken years for Sasori to begin to trust people again and it was all because of Deidara. Now he had his chance to help him and he wouldn't blow it. But at the same time, he didn't want to keep pushing for answers and possibly tip him over the edge.

Sasori hated this damn couch; it was near impossible to get comfortable on it.

He growled softly and adjusted his position again, frowning. He couldn't block out his thoughts so he tried to delve into them. Sasori had an insanely high IQ and he would put it to use; he firmly believed that if he thought about it hard enough, he could come up with an answer. Because every problem has a root and a solution; he knew Deidara so well, Sasori was so sure he could find an answer. Because that was his job as the best friend, wasn't it? To help his best friend when in need?

Will you let me help you?

And so began a restless night of pretending to be fine when he felt everything he knew was falling apart.

8:04 AM, November 18

"Kakuzu. I need you to get something from my apartment, un. Do not ask, do not look, do not wonder; bring me the backpack as soon as possible."

Kakuzu was not happy. He was woken up about five minutes ago by Sakura; Deidara had relayed a message to her and said it was urgent. She snuck into the waiting room and gently shook him awake, telling him Deidara had requested him specifically. The black haired man groaned but obliged, avoiding the maze of bodies on the floor (when he went to sleep everyone was on a couch but when he woke up, at least half of them were sprawled out on the floor.)

And now he found out he was woken up because Deidara wanted his backpack.

If it weren't completely inappropriate, he would have threatened Deidara with death.

"Are you serious?"

"Dead serious, un."

"…That's not funny."

"Wasn't trying to be, un," Deidara shrugged, smirking, "Just… get that backpack. Don't look inside, un. I'm asking you because you're the only one who would listen to me." He noticed Deidara was fiddling around nervously with the bandages (fresh ones, he was pleased to see) and avoiding his gaze. Whatever was in this backpack was obviously important to him and, given the situation, probably relating to why he had done what he did.

"What about Sasori?"

"…There's something in there that danna absolutely can't see, un," he mumbled, his eyes still not looking at him. Kakuzu raised an eyebrow but decided not to question it. He gave a quiet 'sure' and turned around to head to Deidara's apartment, passing by Tobi. He had brushed shoulders with him and taken a couple of steps away before stopping and calling out to the other.

"Tobi."

"Yes, Kakuzu-san?" Tobi turned around and chirped, yet Kakuzu could hear the lack of energy. He couldn't help but smile slightly, seeing how even Tobi was depressed over this. There were very few people that would openly voice how worried they were but Tobi would do it for them. Because they weren't the type of friends to give flowers or balloons, but they would always care without words.

"…Cheer him up."

"Tobi always tries his best!" the black haired boy grinned and playfully saluted Kakuzu as he smirked and walked off. Tobi turned around and walked the last few steps to Deidara's room and pushed it open tentatively, his single red eye blinking. He nervously adjusted the eye patch over his other as he walked up to the chair by Deidara's bed and sat down. "…Senpai, Tobi is here to talk to you."

"…Oh God, un," Deidara glanced at him and groaned, pulling the covers over his head. "Tobi, I have absolutely no patience to deal with you today, un. Get lost." They were harsh words but Tobi knew he didn't mean them; he was getting used to Deidara's tactless remarks. He was abrasive but Tobi didn't mind; he looked up to Deidara and he knew he didn't mean most of what he said anyway. He wasn't afraid to be honest, though, a quality that Tobi appreciated.

"Senpai was the first person to stand up for Tobi. Because Tobi was always bullied for his pale skin and red eyes and senpai was always kind enough to beat people up that bullied Tobi. So for that, Tobi is very thankful he met you," he said in a small voice, smiling slightly, "And even now, after Tobi's eye was viciously attacked, senpai still stands up for Tobi even though senpai ended up in the hospital defending Tobi and his own eye was almost blinded."

"…Tobi, anyone with a brain would have stood up for you, un. Those guys had you pinned down and were about to gouge your damn eye out."

Tobi laughed softly and tugged at the sheets until Deidara's face was revealed. He was glaring at Tobi, like usual, but it was a softer glare. Not as angry but plenty annoyed; however, Tobi could see the gratitude. He hesitated before grinning widely and Deidara couldn't help but smirk. "…Thanks for coming, un."

"Oh, everybody's here!" Tobi brightened up, grinning when Deidara was actually nice to him, "Including Sasori-san! Is this…" Tobi's energy faltered and he frowned as Deidara's eyes widened and he looked away, "Is this… about Sasori-sa—"

"No," Deidara interrupted Tobi suddenly, looking away and flushing, "I-it's not, un. I don't care about anything anymore, so if you really want to, go ahead and tell danna, un. But don't give him the idea that I did this because of him because no one made me do this, un."

Tobi fell quiet and blinked a couple of times. "Tobi won't tell Sasori-san. But that's because Tobi believes it's something senpai has to tell him by himself. You know, senpai… Tobi would have been really sad if you were gone. Tobi looks up to you."

Deidara hesitated before turning to Tobi and immediately felt guilt clawing the inside of him. It was so weird to see Tobi quiet; the red eye was downcast and the bottom lip was trembling as he tried to keep himself from crying. The blonde sighed and smiled slightly, reaching a hand out to ruffle Tobi's hair; he'd never admit it but he had a certain soft spot for him. Ever since the first time Deidara stood up to the bullies harassing Tobi, the kid grew on him. Despite having the scare of going blind in one eye while standing up for Tobi, he'd never regret saving him that one afternoon.

"…Thanks, un," he grinned when Tobi looked up, "Sorry for worrying you, un."

"Senpai, you were really selfish, you know."

Deidara looked up in surprise; Tobi usually always spoke to him with a semi-polite tone and was always happy. He sounded angry this time and for once, Tobi actually did look quite angry. Not sad, not annoyed, but angry and for a split second Deidara actually was scared. Tobi had gone from sad and reflective to mad in three seconds flat and Deidara had absolutely no idea why. "…What are you talking about, un?"

"You tried to kill yourself! Tobi doesn't know what the reason was, but Tobi does know that senpai obviously didn't think about anything else! Because, senpai, you have a lot of people that care for you! Tobi cares for you and so do the rest of your friends! And Sasori-san, did you even think about him? Tobi doesn't know if he reciprocates your feelings, but he definitely cares for you! And what if you actually succeeded, senpai? What do you think Sasori-san would do then? He wouldn't just get over it; he might do something as stupid as you did! Just because you couldn't deal with your pain, you hurt other people! Senpai, Tobi really cares for you and stuff, but right now, you just make Tobi so mad!"

Tobi broke off, huffing angrily, his cheeks pink from anger. He looked away and bit his lip; he hadn't really meant to blow up on Deidara like that, but sitting here he just couldn't hold it in. He was so scared when Sasori called them all to the hospital; Deidara was like his savior, like his idol. And he couldn't stand that he just wanted to end his life without considering what effect it would have on other people. "Senpai, Tobi looks up to you a lot. If… if you were gone, I don't know what I'd do," he said quietly.

Deidara was quiet for several moments and Tobi was worried he was going to strangle him. But then he heard a soft chuckle and when he looked up, Deidara was genuinely laughing. The smile seemed to brighten up his whole face and add color and Tobi couldn't help but smile in response; this was the person he knew and looked up to. Deidara sighed and looked at Tobi, folding his hands behind his head against the pillow. "You know, it's always weird when you make sense, un. I guess I was being selfish… wasn't I?"

"Yes, senpai! You were! So don't ever do that again!" without a pause, Tobi bounded out of the chair and threw his arms around Deidara's neck, embracing the other in a very unwelcomed hug. Deidara tried feebly to kick Tobi off but since he was already laying down and Tobi was now on top of him, it proved to be impossible.

"Argh, Tobi, get the hell off of me, un! I don't want a damn hug this early in the morning!"

9:53 AM, November 18

"Here."

"What's this?"

"Tapes of reasons for why Deidara found it so hard to keep living."

Sasori had grudgingly went home about an hour ago. Sakura told everyone that tests would be run on Deidara and he would not be allowed to see anyone until later, so they all parted ways and returned home. No sooner had Sasori returned to his apartment before his doorbell rang, revealing Kakuzu with a half open backpack and a bundle of tapes in his hands.

Sasori's eyes widened as he looked up at Kakuzu. He took the tape and stared at them, seeing a crisply folded note beneath the rubber bands. He pried it out gently and opened it with shaking hands, his eyes running over the familiar script.

To Sasori no danna,

Please listen to these. I hope it'll all make sense.

Deidara

"They're meant for you so I haven't listened to them," Kakuzu shrugged and zipped Deidara's backpack closed, glancing at the tapes, "But… I think you should. If you want to help him and understand him. The kid's more complicated than any of us dreamed of, as you probably know. …I care for him just as much as you do, so don't try to push any of us away, all right?" Tentatively, the taller man put a hand on Sasori's shoulder and smiled softly. "We almost lost him. We don't want to lose the other artist."

"…Thanks," Sasori nodded and closed the door as Kakuzu headed off towards the hospital to leave the backpack for Deidara. He walked over to his room and took out an old cassette player and fumbled around with the tape for a few moments before putting it in, and put the rest of them under his bed. It was outdated, true, but Sasori liked antique things. They gave a sense of worth and withstood the test of time. Frequently he would drag Deidara to an antique shop and make him spend hours there as Sasori looked at all the beautiful things for sale. Deidara, unfortunately, did not share the same passion and demanded they go to electronics stores with the latest gadgets.

He pulled out a pair of headphones and plugged it into the machine and sat on his bed. As he put them on his head, he hit play and closed his eyes, hearing a few crackly sounds before Deidara's voice began to occupy the silence.

"Sasori no danna, I hope you're the one listening to this, un. These are meant for you and you only because if you're listening to these, I sure as hell better be gone. I feel you are the only one that deserves a kind of explanation and I want to thank you for being my friend and I'm sorry to do this to you, un. It's not easy trying to explain this, so bear with me, danna. I've narrowed it down to six reasons and I sincerely hope you will keep listening and not throw these away and pretend I never existed…" as Deidara's voice began to occupy his mind, he closed his eyes and laid down onto his bed with his hands crossed behind his head.

It was hard to listen to it; it really was. Because the fact that Deidara made these only made it clearer that he was determined to succeed in his attempt. But Sasori knew he had to listen to these; because this would be his dying wish and Sasori would not deprive them of that.

"So let me start out by saying this: don't blame yourself danna; absolutely do not blame yourself, un. So don't go off and jump off a bridge or something because then what I did would have been basically pointless; I don't want you to feel the same pain and confusion I felt. So here I go; I hope this all makes sense, un…"

Authors notes: There's a oneshot in 'Artistic Masterpieces' that is a shortened and altered version of this story. Initially I didn't know if I would be able to write a full length story so I wrote a oneshot (insanely long one), but this idea has been bugging me still so I decided to try it. I look forward to enjoy something that isn't in the romantic and humorous genre like everything else I've written. Thank you for reading, please review!