Disclaimer: not mine...we all know that

IMPORTANT NOTE: sorry this took a while...I have been rather busy with my book and my editor and THAT takes priority sorry. I have chapter three written though!Don't forget reviews are LOVE!

Chapter 2

She often wondered…wondered how a broken heart continued beating. And then there were the moments she felt she was barely breathing, holding on for one more day, one more chance…one last hope. But in the night, alone in her room, listening to the sound of the clock she wondered how she would ever be okay…how she would ever move on, let go of what she always thought to be her future.

Every time she closed her eyes she saw him with her. She blamed herself though; after all, she made him invite the young woman. Maybe it was a sign of just how broken she was. She couldn't understand it. Why couldn't it be her? Why couldn't she be the one? Why couldn't he even give them a chance to see?

Why couldn't she go to sleep? She wanted nothing more than to go to sleep because at least there, in her dreams, he held her, loved her, called her his. And once she fell asleep she didn't want to wake…she never did. She wanted to fall into that dream land and never wake. In her dreams she was the one.

With a deep sigh, she threw her legs off the bed and let them dangle for a moment. Her eyes watched her perfectly painted pink toes barely scrape the floor. She took a deep breath and closed her eyes at the pain. A broken heart may continue to beat, but it hurt…it ached and fought against the air. It was as if her heart was giving up.

A breeze blew through her window, pushing the sheer white curtain into the air, allowing it to float for a moment as if some spirit lingered beneath, writhing beneath the delicate material. She opened her eyes again, pushing herself off the bed. It was as if every fiber in her being wanted to just quit. Everything hurt. Slowly she moved to the window, pushing the curtain aside and pinning it to the edge of the wall and window while she stared out at the night.

The moon lit up the night sky, shining through her window, sending a moonlit glow dancing across her face and floor. She wondered if he was looking at the moon right now…if he was thinking about her at all or if he was too busy…if that girl had all of his attention still. There was no warmth from the moonlight, nothing to stop the chills that ran through her body at the thought of him touching another.

But then, he had never touched her like that…never would.

She wrapped her arms around her middle.

How could anyone love her like this? She was damaged…broken.

"Yuki-chan, maybe it's time to save yourself…let him go and move on."

Akira's words echoed in her head. He was right. She had to stop holding on. She had to let go. She had to save herself. She wiped the tears from her cheeks, her eyes flickering to the shrubbery beneath her window on the edge of her parents' property. She stilled for a moment, waiting.

She thought she had seen movement…an odd shift in the greenery.

The soft vibration of her phone on the window ceil caught her attention. Wiping one last tear she picked it up, opening the text.

For I ne'er saw true beauty till this night…

She was an evanescent vision of beauty in the window…the moon setting her face aglow in its splendor. He couldn't pull himself away from her. He was happy just to see her and felt horribly helpless at her tears. He wanted to take them away…he wanted to make her smile…light her face in happiness.

It was amazing.

Even in tears she took his breath away.

And he had to fix it.

He pulled out his phone and quickly sent her a text…hoping to bring a smile to her beautiful face. And his heart fluttered in excitement and happiness when her face lit up in a smile.

"Yuki-chan!"

He could remember the first time he heard her name…floating through the breeze of that sunny day…

Classes had just let out and he sat on a bench slightly shaded by the nearby trees, relaxed holding his books balanced on his leg. The breeze stirred around him as he looked up. Pale pink petals from the sakura blossoms fluttered through the air, gently falling to the ground. She ran through the shower of petals, paying them no mind, running toward the young man that had called her name. Her face was alight in what could only be seen as joy and happiness. She bounded across the grass, coming to a halt in front of the two young men waiting for her.

He couldn't pull his eyes away from her. Even from this distance he could see it in her face when she looked at one of the men. He held her heart and soul and Tucker wondered if he knew just how lucky he was. She looked up at the man with such love and light in her eyes, her cheeks blushing slightly as he said something to her. The other one, the one that had called for her attention, said something to make her laugh slightly as he plucked pink petals out of her hair.

"Is he here for you?"

"I don't know…one way to find out."

Tucker looked up at the two young women that had paused only feet from him. They couldn't have been more opposite. The friend left standing there looked more like she would be Yuki's friend, a nice girl, well behaved, innocent.

"He's not here to see the girl he's speaking with?" Tucker asked curious and trying to find out some sort of information on this girl that had captured his attention.

"I don't know. Yuki-chan is just his friend though. She is not his type at all."

"Who is he?"

The girl looked at him wide-eyed.

"Nishikado Soujiroh…you know….one of the F4."

Tucker nodded having heard of the F4 since his plane landed. He turned back to watch Yuki. The name echoed like a dream in his head. She was still talking to this Nishikado though, her eyes so lit up there was no doubt she was in love with him, but Nishikado's attentions were elsewhere, on the girl that had left her friend behind. He saw it when it happened. The moment Yuki realized she no longer had his attention, the moment she glanced over her shoulder at what had his attention he saw the light fade from her eyes, saw the smile melt from her face and watched as she tried to force it back, to act as if nothing was wrong. It was in that moment as he watched Nishikado walk off toward the other girl, as he watched the other young man look down at her, wiping a tear off her cheek and smiling at her, saying something to try to cheer her up that he knew—he knew where his heart was and he knew he had to know her…had to at least take the chance in hopes of putting a smile on her face…because this girl was worth the chance…

"Yuki-chan!"

Tucker's eyes shifted from the vision in the window. The loud whisper was not meant for him, but got his attention none the less. He felt his heart sink as he noticed who it was…who was standing beneath Yuki's window…calling for her as if he were her Romeo. He wanted to turn and run, but found he couldn't. He had to stay…watch…make sure she was okay…even after.

Yuki smiled at the text, for once feeling like the desired girl, not the one left to the side for others.

"Yuki-chan!"

It was a loud whisper, one meant for her and not for anyone else to notice. Her eyes, still damp from her tears looked up from her phone, landing on the tall figure beneath her window.

It was Soujiroh, smiling up at her and beckoning her outside with him.

"Soujiroh-san!" He smiled up at her use of his name. It had taken him forever to get her to stop calling him Nishikado-san.

"Come down here," he said. "I need to talk to you."

It was a dream…it had to be. Perhaps she fell asleep after all. Another breeze swept through the room and she shivered. Soujiroh noticed, frown on his face. His eyes glanced over at the trellis next to her window.

"Can I come up then?"

She nodded, not sure her voice would work to say yes. She watched in amazement as Soujiroh scaled her house, via the trellis and with a smile climbed through her bedroom window. She stepped back nervously; never had there been a boy in her room. She immediately diverted her eyes to the floor, blush creeping across her cheeks.

"Have you been crying?" He asked, stepping forward and reaching out to touch the track stains of her tears.

"No!" She said almost too loudly, stepping back, out of his reach. He watched her oddly for a moment, very aware she was lying. "What did you want to talk to me about?" She asked quickly trying to change the subject.

"We need to talk, Yuki-chan," he said in a soft voice.

She lifted her eyes from her feet, meeting his and she felt her heart breaking already. It started to hurt to breathe…her own body fighting the air she so desperately needed. He didn't have to say anything. She already knew. She felt her bottom lip quiver slightly and quickly she bit it, almost drawing blood.

"It's okay," she whispered, afraid if she spoke any louder her voice would give away her heart ache.

"What is okay?" He asked wanting clarification that she understood his intent.

"You don't have to say anything. I know."

He looked at her, so innocent and sweet. He hated doing this, but it was the only way to be sure…to make things one hundred percent clear.

"You are a sweet girl, Yuki-chan. And someone is out there for you…but it isn't me. You have to accept that." She only nodded with her eyes back on the floor. He wanted to be sure she was listening. He reached out, put his fingertips under her chin and tilted her head up to look at him.

"Please, don't," she whispered.

He almost didn't. He could hear the pain in her voice and it was only amplified by the unshed tears in her eyes.

"It will never be you, Yuki-chan. I am sorry…please accept that."

She blinked, a tear falling from her eye and splashing onto his fingertips as she pulled her head away from his hand. He froze for a moment, looking at the wet spot on his fingertips before balling his fist up and taking a deep breath. How did she do that? How could a single tear from a single girl make him so angry…at himself?

"Please leave now," she whispered, her voice quavering in upset. "You made your point. I understand. Now please leave."

"Yuki-chan!" He reached out grabbing her wrist before she could walk away. "Please don't be angry. I only tell you this because I don't like seeing you hurt…because I don't want to hurt you."

"I know," she said. "I just want to be alone."

He didn't let go of her wrist though. Instead, he pulled her to him, wrapped his arms around her and held her tightly whispering his apologies in her ear. He really was sorry. She was such a sweet girl and part of him wished he could love her in the same way she loved him, but it would be useless. His parents already had his marriage arranged. It was best if she forgot any romantic feelings for him.

But no matter, he still couldn't stand to see her cry.

She seemed so far away. He could see her in the window…tears still evident on her cheeks as Nishikado crawled out her window. Nishikado stopped half way across the small yard and looked back up at her waving goodbye. She smiled a sad almost forced smile and waved goodbye. Tucker could see the pain through her smile and the moment Nishidado disappeared into the night she broke down. He saw it in the window, her face contorting into agony, one arm wrapping around her middle as if she felt ill and her other hand covering her mouth as if to stop herself from crying out in pain.

He decided in that very moment…he would live his life doing everything he could to make Yuki see she was worth loving and that she was loved…he would not allow a day go by without putting a smile on her face…this Nishikado didn't even realize what he had and now he would never have it.

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She was finished. Yes, she woke up the next morning filled with doom and a longing she knew would never be quenched, but somehow that shifted as the day progressed.

She was done with Nishikado Soujiroh.

Never again would he hurt her. She would not allow it.

She stood in the private room of the F4's above the club, watching the masses of people dancing, men approaching women and Soujiroh…charming a girl near the bar. The muffled thump of the music downstairs filled the room, but in no way overpowered the bickering between Makino and Domyouji. Yuki couldn't help the smile as she listened to them.

One day someone would love her like that…enough to go against the world for her. Ultimately Domyouji didn't let anything stand in his way of loving Makino…not even his family obligations. Her eyes lingered on Soujiroh.

He would never love her like that.

He made that clear.

Never again would she search him out, never again would she look for his approval and never again would she let him see her cry…over him. She smiled as she noticed Akira crossing the dance floor, heading straight for the stairs to their little room. The girl he was dancing with must have been too young for him…or she was free for the taking. She couldn't help the slight giggle as he looked up at her and shook his head no as if to say the young woman was not to be his date that evening.

Rui glanced over the edge of his book at Yuki's giggle. She felt his eyes on her and turned around, looking slightly embarrassed.

"Gomen," she said softly.

Rui looked at her curiously. Why was she apologizing? He was simply curious what had caused her to giggle. He didn't complain about it. Yes, just like with Makino in the beginning he found her very presence a bother. But as time passed she quickly became a normal part of their outings. If anything, she was like the little sister of the F4.

Akira walked in before Rui could ask what she was apologizing for exactly. Rui went back to his book and Yuki turned to Akira smiling in amusement. He knew what she was thinking…she often told him. Yuki firmly believed that if he kept playing with woman that were already taken, one day he was going to find one and fall in love with her…and she wasn't going to be willing to leave her husband for him. He had it coming and he was playing with fire. He was insistent that he would never fall in love with a taken woman.

"It will never happen, Yuki-chan," he said with a smile letting her know she didn't have to say anything as he walked up to her and tapped her nose playfully.

"You have your university exam at Eitoku tomorrow don't you?" He asked remembering.

She nodded.

"Well, how about Rui and I give you a ride home. You need your rest so you can do well."

Rui looked up at his name curious why Yuki going home took two of them to accomplish. He was quite comfortable where he was at. Makino glanced up, taking in the scene across the room. She had noticed earlier, but brushed it off as her imagination. Anytime Akira went anywhere with Yuki, whether it be taking her home or picking her up, he always took Rui with him…never Soujiroh anymore. She began to wonder if Akira wasn't trying to play match maker.

"What are you smiling about woman?"

Yuki waved her goodbyes to Makino and Domyouji as she left the room with the two men, completely aware that Makino and Domyouji were lost in their bickering again and wouldn't notice her absence until later.

The music was much louder outside the room, the bass thumping through her body. It was funny and almost automatic. Akira led Yuki through the club, Rui walking behind as if they were protecting her—her body guards if you will. She noticed the occasional boy would look her way, actually at her it seemed, but quickly looked away when Rui would glance their way. Akira glanced over his shoulder at her, noticing the way she toyed with the pendent that hung from her neck. The silver edges had all the makings of an old family heirloom and the amber stone in the middle had carvings he couldn't quite make out.

"Yuki-chan, that is a very beautiful pendent."

She looked down; dropping her hand from it as if his statement made her aware she was toying with it.

"Thank you. My grandfather gave it to me when I was a little girl."

"You will have to tell me about that one day soon," Akira said with a smile as he noticed one person in the club not afraid to approach Yuki.

"James-san!"

He smiled a crooked little grin.

"Tucker, Yuki-chan…just Tucker."

She nodded, blush creeping across her cheeks.

"Rui and I will be waiting by the car, Yuki-chan…take your time," Akira said with a smile.

Rui looked over at Akira with a look of near disapproval, but Akira looked at him in a way that told him it was okay…after all…Akira had enough people at his disposal by himself to take care of some American kid if he tried anything with Yuki. Rui yawned and walked with Akira out of the club.

It really didn't take long for him to notice. Tucker and Yuki had only been talking maybe five minutes…long enough for Tucker to make her smile and brighten her blush a little. But he noticed. And when he did, he left the woman at the bar and made his way to her. He came up behind her, grabbing her by the elbow to guide her out of the club. Soujiroh glared down at the American kid as he spoke to Yuki.

"Come, Yuki-chan. You have your University exam in the morning and an important tea ceremony class after."

Tucker said nothing, letting her go because he knew…by the end of the week he would have a date with her…something Nishikado could not stop.

Yuki was fuming. The fire of her anger burning stronger the longer he held on to her like a child. Once out of the club he let her go. Rui and Akira were by the car, at attention when they noticed Soujiroh removing her from the club like a petulant child. She didn't even look at him. She was so angry she couldn't. She was halfway to Akira and Rui when he spoke…his voice demanding.

"Stay away from him, Yuki-chan."

Akira's eyes widened as he saw the look on Yuki's face…the fire dancing in her eyes. Rui even perked up curious as to this outcome. She whipped around to glare at him, her lips pursed in anger.

"How dare you even think you can tell me what to do!"

"I don't trust him and neither should you."

"My love life is not your business." She snapped at him, her eyes narrowed in near hatred as she turned to leave. He reached her before she got away, grabbing her wrist.

"This boy," he said. "Will only hurt you. Do you plan to go through with this? Do you really know him?"

She was boiling. All the anger she felt toward him seeming to overflow in that moment. She didn't know if she wanted to cry or scream. She snatched her wrist from his grasp.

"MAYBE YOU SHOULD SPEND LESS TIME WORRYING ABOUT WHAT I MIGHT BE DOING WITH STRANGE BOYS AND WORRY ABOUT WHAT I AM DOING WITH THE ONES YOU KNOW!"

She stormed off, right up to the car she would be riding home in, Akira and Rui both leaning against the car looking at her. Her cheeks flushed in anger and confusion. Her chest heaving in her heavy breath as she quickly looked between the two and made a choice...a choice that Soujiroh would never forget…a swift choice that made it appear that she didn't even have to think about it. She grabbed Rui's tie, pulling him down to her as she jumped up on her tip toes, her lips crashing onto his.

The first thing that flashed in Rui's mind was "soft." Her lips were unbelievably soft. He wasn't quite sure what came over him. Perhaps it was the feel of her lips, perhaps it was the fact that his friend deserved this for treating her so...but it wasn't that he liked it. His hands slid up, partially in her hair as he held her face, gaining control of the kiss she obviously wanted in order to tick his friend off. The sudden kiss turned slow, Rui wrapping an arm around her small waist and pulling her against him as her hands fell from his tie.

Soujiroh stood there, fuming. Akira stepping forward preparing to stop his friend from doing anything stupid, but it seemed Soujiroh was frozen in his anger, watching one of his friends caress this girls lips as if he could devour her right there in front of him.

"Just let it go for tonight," Akira said as he opened the door.

Rui relinquished his hold of the young woman and helped her into the car with him.

"You want me to let that go?" Soujiroh yelled at Akira pointing at Rui's back.

"What do you want to do? Beat up Rui?" Akira asked. "She's not yours Soujiroh! You made that clear and she made her point! Let. It. Go."

Akira slid into the car, closing the door and knocking on the partition for the driver to go. He glanced at the two that were all but making out a moment ago. Rui sat silently, as if nothing had just happened and Yuki sat across from him, eyes trained out the window.

"Gomen," she whispered to Rui as the tears began to slowly slide down her cheeks.