A/N There may be lots of mistakes in this fic, but I was so emotional when I was writing this I couldn't comprehend anything properly. If you read the A/N at the bottom of this fic (it's down the end because it contains spoilers) you'll see why that was, but for now, this was a vent fic, and that's why I was so emotional.

Seventeen-year-old Uchiha Izuna's eyes widened in shock, spilling over with tears the second his Facebook page loaded up. He couldn't believe his eyes. He sincerely hoped that every single status he was reading right now was some sort of sick mass prank, but the second Izuna's bedroom door opened and his brother entered in a slow saunter, Izuna knew that this was no joke.

"Izuna…" Madara said softly, uncertainty in his voice. "…May I talk to you for a second…?"

"…" Izuna choked on a sob as he wiped hastily at his eyes. "…It's no joke, is it, aniki…?" he found himself whispering.

Madara bit his lip and shook his head. "No… It's no joke…"

Izuna looked back at his Facebook, unable to do anything but stare at the first status on top of the page. R.I.P Senju Tobirama – a great guy who was bullied so much he thought he had to kill himself to escape it was what it read. Madara sat down on the bed beside his brother, pulling the laptop from Izuna's lap and closing the lid gently, placing it on the bedside table beside him.

"I'm so sorry, Izuna…" Madara whispered, pulling the seemingly-frozen Izuna into his tight hold. "…I'm so sorry…"

Izuna couldn't stop the tears from running down his cheeks, and he just couldn't find the energy to move. He lay unmoving in Madara's arms, the news of his best friend's death unable to sink in properly – Izuna just couldn't believe it, no matter what.

"It's okay, baby brother," Madara whispered again, kissing his brother's cheek lovingly, rocking him back and forth. "It's okay… There's a lesson to be learnt in Tobirama's death – look at what suicide leaves behind…"

"…" Izuna let out a loud sob, turning around in his brother's tight embrace to bury his face in Madara's chest, clutching at the older Uchiha's shirt tightly. "…Why…? Why did he do that…? Why did he… leave us all behind…?"

"You know that he was bullied, Izuna," Madara said softly, stoking his brother's hair. "I know this will be hard to hear, but what Tobirama did was such a cowardly act… It wasn't like he had no one to turn to – he had Hashirama, and both of us… A cowardly, selfish act is what suicide is…"

"…Tobi…" Izuna sobbed, his breathing soon becoming erratic as he broke down into hysterics. "…Tobi…! No…! Tobi…!"

"Shh…" Madara soothed, his own eyes welling up. "I know… I know… Aniki has you… Shh… It's okay…"

Madara held his brother for hours, allowing him to cry out his emotions – he knew that Izuna loved Tobirama more than a lot of things in life, and hearing that the Senju had committed suicide because of bullying would have caught him off-guard – Tobirama was always smiling and laughing – no one could've seen this coming.

-XX-

"How do you feel, Izuna?" Madara asked that morning, standing in Izuna's doorway. "Did you sleep well?"

Izuna shook his head. "No, aniki… I… I could barely sleep…"

"I know…" Madara entered the room and stood by the bed, kneeling down and placing a kiss on Izuna's temple. "I know that it's hard. Come out for breakfast and I'll take you over to Hashirama's home and you can talk to him, okay? Hashirama is very distressed about this, so I'm sure he'll need someone to talk to. You can talk to each other, okay?"

Izuna squeezed his eyes closed, trying to stop his tears from escaping, and he bit his lip as he nodded. "…Okay, aniki…"

Madara gently grabbed Izuna's hand, squeezing it tightly as he pulled Izuna carefully out of the bed and standing him on his feet, leading him from the cluttered bedroom. Breakfast was a quick one, and once Izuna started to watch houses go past his window from the passenger seat in the car, nothing felt real. Izuna felt hollow inside, empty, and he didn't feel like he could cry anymore. He just felt so detached from the world it was unreal.

"Izuna," Madara spoke softly, breaking Izuna out of his thoughts. "Izuna, are you going to be okay?"

Izuna shook his head and pulled his knees up to his chest, wrapping his arms around them and sobbing softly. "…"

"…" Madara frowned, so very worried for his baby brother. He knew that he himself didn't have much time left – ever since he was young he had been very sick, and it had only been getting worse. He wished desperately with all of his being that his time wouldn't come yet – he couldn't leave Izuna alone at a time like this. "…What are you thinking about, Izuna…?"

Izuna shook his head, wiping at his wet eyes again. "…A-aniki… I-I don't… I don't understand… how someone could do that…"

"I don't either, Izuna," Madara agreed tenderly. "I don't either… All I know is that once people pass, everyone suddenly realises how beautiful and amazing that person once was – so why don't we tell people that when they're still around to hear it? I love you, Izuna, with all of my heart. So much. You're so beautiful and I just couldn't live if something happened to you. I love you so much, you amazing boy."

Izuna's shoulders shook with raw emotion and Madara only just heard the young boy whisper an 'I love you' back. Madara reached over and took Izuna's hand in his own, holding it tightly for the rest of the drive. Not long after the two Uchiha arrived at Senju Hashirama's home, Madara was sitting on the couch, watching both the twenty-six-year-old Senju and Madara's young brother embrace desperately, crying together.

Madara, having just recently turned twenty-one, offered to take Hashirama out for a few drinks seeing as the Uchiha had never gone out drinking before because of his responsibility for Izuna. Hashirama accepted, needing something to distract him from his pain, and after organising Izuna's care for the night, the two older men left together, ready to drown their sorrow together.

-XX-

The funeral was only a few days later, and Izuna was so unprepared. He almost couldn't bring himself to get out of the bed and get ready, and if Madara hadn't pushed him into going, he probably wouldn't have. So here he was now, standing before Tobirama's coffin, crying his heart out, but there were a lot of things he had to say about Tobirama, and in a way, Izuna was just glad that Madara had pushed him into coming – he had been so heartbroken about Tobirama's death, all he had been able to do was convey his emotions into words, and he had eventually written an entire song dedicated to his best friend.

"I just want to say that Tobi was loved by so many people, and yet," Izuna had to stop and rub at his eyes, trying to keep his voice steady, "if he could do this, he didn't realise just how much he was loved… I prepared this song for Tobi not long after I had found out about his death… I would like to sing it…"

Everyone smiled and nodded, applauding encouragingly at Izuna, and said Uchiha quickly gathered his courage, singing the words that his emotions had laid out for him.

I remember the first time that you made me laugh…

That was true for me, and with your other friends…

I remember the first time you called my name…

I thought you were nice and sweet…

Well, I was right…

Whenever I saw you walking, you would smile…

You bring joy to the world in your own ways…

I can't believe that you're gone so soon…

Without saying goodbye…

The world won't be the same without you now you're gone…

You shall remain in our hearts…

It's hard to believe that you're not here with us…

Looking back at all the years…

The world won't be the same without you…

Now you're gone...

You'll be remaining in our hearts…

You shine like a star…

Brighter than anyone…

Your smile is like a star…

You are the only one…

You shine like a star…

Brighter than anyone…

Your smile is like a star…

You are the only one…

You will shine like a star…

Brighter than anyone…

You are the only one…

Izuna soon finished up with a heartbroken sob, but the loud clapping and cheers told Izuna all he needed to know – he had obviously done a great job with something just then. Izuna smiled weakly and bowed, wiping at his eyes as he left to return to his brother's side. Madara opened his arms wide and allowed Izuna to fall into his embrace, holding him tightly while Hashirama sobbed into Madara's shoulder.

"You did great…" Hashirama forced out to Izuna, lifting his head high enough for Izuna to see his sad smile. "I'm so glad that he had a friend like you…"

Izuna nodded and pulled out of Madara's arms, moving instead to Hashirama and hugging him. The Senju hugged back, and soon enough, a group hug was formed between the three of them – the only thing that was keeping them grounded at that moment.

-XX-

Only hours after the funeral, Izuna's phone rang from up on the kitchen bench. The Uchiha looked at the caller ID and was a little nervous to find that his boss was ringing him – he knew that it would probably only be because she was looking for someone to work, but Izuna always got paranoid at the thought that he had missed a shift when his boss rang.

"Hello…" Izuna said shyly into the phone as he did every time his boss rang.

"Hey, Izuna," Katsuo said happily on the other end of the line. "How are you?"

"Good…" Izuna said softly, not liking to lie but not wanting to worry Katsuo – Katsuo was such a sweet person and actually treated her subordinates kindly, getting along well with them and always making her employees enjoy their time at work.

"Would you like to work tonight?" Katsuo asked, a smile in her voice.

"…" Izuna looked up at Madara who was sitting down on the couch with Hashirama at his side, and Izuna bit his lip – he didn't feel like going to work but he knew that even when he went to work unhappy, he always cheered up – it was hard to stay sad around such happy people. "Okay… I'll be there soon…"

"Thank you so much, Izuna! I'll see you soon! Bye, bye!"

"Bye…" Izuna hung the phone up and approached his brother. "Aniki, I told Katsuo that I would work tonight…"

Madara frowned. "Do you feel well enough to go? It's your day off – spend it grieving if you need to, okay? You don't have to go to work like this. Do I need to ring Katsuo back and explain about the fune –"

"—Aniki, it's okay…" Izuna's soft voice said. "Really… I can work… I need to do something…!"

Madara bit his lip but nodded anyway. "…Okay… Go and get ready and then I'll drop you off."

"Thank you, aniki…"

Izuna quickly left the living room, heading to his bedroom to change into his work uniform, and after bringing his hairbrush down to the living room to give to Madara so the older Uchiha could brush his extremely long, spiky hair for him, he got his shoes and met Madara out in the car while Madara took Hashirama into his bedroom to let him have a sleep.

Everything seemed to be normal once Izuna arrived at his work. He bought some lunch beforehand and sat out in the tearoom, eating peacefully, conversing with his co-workers-slash-friends, having a great joke with his boss for the hour or so before his shift started, but not even half-an-hour into his shift, the phone behind the registers begun to ring.

Izuna, seeing as he wasn't busy with any customers at that current moment, answered the phone like he was supposed to.

"Good afternoon," Izuna said gently into the phone, "how may I help you?"

"Izuna-kun…?" Came the reply from the other line.

"Oh, hello, Hashirama-san!" Izuna said bubbly, smiling happily. "What's up?"

"Izuna-kun…" Hashirama said quietly, and Izuna could detect deep emotion in the Senju's voice.

"What's wrong?" Izuna frowned. "You sound like you're crying. Did something happen?"

"…I need to come and get you…" Hashirama whispered, his sad emotion in his voice stronger than before. "I'll come and pick you up."

"W-what?" Izuna was startled – no one just came and got Izuna from his shifts whenever they felt like it! "Why...?"

"It's Madara…"

"Aniki…" Izuna whimpered. "W-what happened?"

"…Madara's sick…" Hashirama sobbed.

Izuna felt his whole world shatter at these words, and all he could do was grip the phone like a life-line, tearing up, not able to care as customers started to queue at his register, waiting for service. "Is he okay…?"

"I need to come get you," Hashirama repeated.

"No!" Izuna cried out. "What happened! Tell me! Please! Is he okay!"

"…No…"

"…" Izuna didn't know what he was supposed to do as he heard these words. "But… I just lost Tobi... I don't want to lose anyone else!"

"I know…" Hashirama's strangled sob sounded. "I'll come get you…"

"I'll put you on to my boss," Izuna whispered, unable to keep a steady voice. "You'll need to talk to her…"

With that, Izuna put the phone-call on hold, calling his boss over the P.A with a cracking, teary voice. He stood at the register, serving his customers, trying to distract himself with the task of scanning and bagging, and once his boss arrived, Katsuo took the phone-call, concern on her face as she looked at Izuna's tear-stained face.

"Good afternoon, this is Katsuo speaking," the boss spoke into the phone. "…Oh! …Oh, dear… No, of course you can come and get him! …Right. …I'll send him out into the tearoom until you arrive. Goodbye."

Izuna lowered his head as his boss approached him, and he was aware of the customers' eyes on him, pity and concern in them. Katsuo placed a hand on Izuna's shoulder, squeezing gently.

"Izuna, you go sit out in the tearoom and once your friend arrives I will call you over, okay?" Katsuo smiled.

Izuna nodded, handing the lady her bag and leaving Katsuo to handle the rest of the customers. He kept his head down as he walked out to the tearoom, and Izuna flinched when he heard one of his co-workers call out his name.

"Hey, Izuna!" Izuna turned to face his friend, Kasumi. The older girl's happy expression immediately changed to one of concern as she saw the tears staining Izuna's otherwise happy face. "Izuna, what's wrong?"

"…" Izuna choked on tears as he struggled to find his words. "My brother… he's so sick…! I-I just lost my friend! I can't lose anyone else!"

Kasumi hugged Izuna tightly, rubbing the younger boy's back, and she walked him into the tearoom and sat down with him, listening to the young Uchiha cry his heart out.

"A-aniki…!" Izuna sobbed. "Please don't leave me…! Please…!"

"Izuna, it's okay – I understand what you're going through…" Kasumi spoke gently. "I lost my father three years ago, and even now… it still doesn't feel real… But you have to know that the people who are gone are still with you, and losing someone close to you will only make you stronger… It's going to be okay…"

"But… Tobi… and then aniki…!" Izuna choked on his sobs, clutching at his chest. "…I… I can't…"

"Izuna, I know that it's hard – it's something that no one wants to ever go through – but you have to pull through it, okay? It's going to be okay. Just go and see your brother and tell him that you love him. You've got to tell him this before he passes, okay? Just tell him that you love him and you'll miss him heaps, and you'll feel a lot better for it. When my grandma was put into hospital, my parents found it too hard to go and see her, and as much as I wanted to, I couldn't visit her for months, and then I found out that she was only getting worse, and I planned to go see her – but my mother said that I couldn't see her because it was so bad. I know how hard it is, Izuna. I know…"

Izuna hugged Kasumi tightly, burying himself in close to the warm body, and all he could do was cry until he was called to the front of the store over the P.A – Hashirama must've arrived. Kasumi walked Izuna to the front of the store and hugged him goodbye, and all Izuna could do was run to Hashirama's car and stare at the Senju's red, tear-stained face.

"Are we going to see him?" Izuna whimpered.

Hashirama nodded. "Yes… We're going there right now… But… It might be too hard for you to see, Izuna…"

"I know… Just please let me see my brother…"

Hashirama nodded and pulled the car out of the park, driving extremely cautious in an attempt to take his mind off of his own best friend. He could hear Izuna beside him, crying harshly, and he knew that Izuna wouldn't be able to cope with this properly, but he wouldn't hurt the young Uchiha by denying him the right to see his brother – for what was most likely going to be the last time.

Hashirama himself had no idea what had happened to make Madara so ill in not even two hours without warning – all he could remember was screaming as Madara fell to the ground, coughing up blood, crying out as pain wracked the poor Uchiha's body, and the Senju vaguely remembered calling an ambulance, trying not to think about his deceased brother.

The ambulance had arrived and taken Madara away to the hospital, and Hashirama had gone to see how Madara was doing, but just five minutes after stepping into Madara's hospital room, he had to leave, and it was then he decided that he would go and get Izuna and hopefully they could visit the Uchiha together.

So now, as Hashirama pulled into the hospital parking lot, Izuna begun to shake in what Hashirama could only guess was terror – he felt the same way.

"Let's go," Hashirama said softly as he turned the car off.

Izuna nodded and got out of the car, following closely behind Hashirama. He rubbed at his sore eyes, and the walk down the corridor that only took ten minutes felt like an eternity to Izuna before Hashirama stopped them outside Madara's hospital ward door.

"He's in here," Hashirama whispered, wiping tears out of his own eyes. "If it's too much for you to handle then leave the room and wait for me outside – I'll take you home."

Izuna nodded and gulped as Hashirama pushed the door open, and he gasped when he saw his brother lying on the bed, so still it looked like he was already dead. Madara was hooked up to a respiration machine, a heart monitor beside the bed, and there were so many drips sticking out of the Uchiha's skinny body, Izuna almost fell to the ground with an agonised scream.

"Izuna…" Hashirama whispered, concern in his voice. "Are you okay…?"

"…" Izuna looked up at Hashirama, his eyes overflowing with tears. He wasn't okay, but he wasn't going to lose this chance to say goodbye to his brother.

Izuna stumbled towards Madara, Hashirama behind him, and Izuna was sickened to know that Madara was barely responding to anything. Izuna cried loudly as he reached Madara's side, and reaching out, he took the older Uchiha's hand, squeezing it tightly, and Izuna could almost feel his heart falling into the depths of his stomach as Madara slowly turned to look at who had grabbed his hand – but what hurt more than that delayed action that was performed so slowly it was almost like Madara could barely move, was the look of emptiness – no, the lifeless look in those coal-black eyes.

"Aniki…" Izuna sobbed, climbing up onto the bed and snuggling in close to his brother, crying hysterically into Madara's chest – so it was finally his time, now? "Oh, aniki… I… I love you so much, too…! You were right… What you said that day… about telling people that they're amazing and beautiful… I only told you that I loved you, but… you told me more than that… And now I don't even know if you can hear me… Aniki, you're so beautiful, too…! And you're amazing! I love you so much, too! You've always taken care of me! Always! And… you've always put me before yourself… You never let anything bad happen to me, even at the cost of your own happiness or wellbeing… You were the definition of selfless and loving, aniki! I'm going to miss you so much, but… I know that you'll be going to a better place, now… You're not going to be in pain anymore, and you won't have to be sad… Kasumi said that you'll be looking down upon me, guiding me and taking care of me, and… I know that she was right… I love you so much, aniki… So much…"

With that, Izuna hugged his brother tightly one last time, placing a deep, loving kiss on his brother's forehead before turning to Hashirama.

"You can say goodbye…" Izuna sobbed.

Hashirama nodded, wiping at his eyes and sitting down on the bed beside Madara.

"Madara," Hashirama began, "you were a great friend to me and my otouto… Izuna was right – you are a selfless, loving person… You always knew how to cheer me up and take care of me… I'm sorry… I don't know what else I can say to you… But please know that I love you so much… So very, very much… I'm so sorry, Madara – I-I'm no good at goodbyes… But please take care of my brother for me, and… make sure he's going to be okay… Tell him that I love him and miss him, and… I promise you, Madara, that I'll take care of Izuna for you from now on. I'll treat him with love and think of him as my… as my other little brother… I know that you would want that… You love Izuna too much…"

Madara's lifeless, tired eyes drooped down a little more at Hashirama's last words, and a loud, strangled cough sent a quiver through the Uchiha's body. Izuna's breath was trapped in his throat as he heard the heart monitor increase rapidly, and he could only cry hysterically as Hashirama desperately jumped to his feet and started screaming for a doctor.

The doctors arrived seconds later, but Izuna knew it was too late – all the blood that was splattering on his face from the force of his brother's coughs only made that reality sink in deeper. Izuna knew that the coughs weren't what had killed his brother, but once the heart monitor went flat, Izuna knew that his brother had finally succumbed to whatever had been plaguing him for eighteen out of his twenty-one years of life.

Izuna didn't know how to react to his brother's passing – he wanted to cry, but he just couldn't. Instead, he snuggled in closer to his brother's body, closing his eyes and trying to fall asleep, just wanting to feel that comfort that he once felt whenever he was in his brother's warm embrace. He was aware of Hashirama screaming out in emotional agony, but that didn't matter – what mattered was being in Madara's arms for the last time.

-XX-

I can't believe that you're gone so soon…

Without saying goodbye…

The world won't be the same without you now you're gone…

You shall remain in our hearts…

It's hard to believe that you're not here with us…

Looking back at all the years…

The world won't be the same without you…

Now you're gone...

You'll be remaining in our hearts…

You shine like a star…

A brighter than anyone…

Your smile is like a star…

You are the only one…

You shine like a star…

Brighter than anyone…

Your smile is like a star…

You are the only one…

You will shine like a star…

Brighter than anyone…

You are the only one…

Izuna had, once again, sung at his brother's funeral, and received the same happiness that he had after singing at Tobirama's funeral. The Uchiha hurried down to Hashirama's side after bowing once again to the crowd, and Hashirama picked Izuna up, holding him tightly – Madara always had been rather weak and frail due to his illness and had never really been able to pick Izuna up.

"If you were to leave next," Hashirama whispered into Izuna's ear, "I would sing the exact same song for you… I love you, Izuna-kun…"

Izuna sobbed and wiped at his wet eyes. "I love you, too, Hashirama-san… You're a beautiful, amazing, and wonderful person to be around…"

Hashirama smiled softly. "What made you say that, Izuna-kun?"

Izuna rubbed at his eyes. "…It… it was something aniki told me… After Tobi died… he said that people only realised someone's true beauty and worth after they were gone, so we should tell everyone that when they're still around to hear it…"

Hashirama smiled and kissed Izuna's forehead. "Your brother was a wonderful man and he raised such a beautiful brother. The coffin is being lowered now…"

Izuna nodded and snuggled in close to the Senju, watching with heartbreak in his gaze as the coffin disappeared from sight. Izuna knew that it would hurt, but he would have to continue on living, for both he and his brother – besides, it was just like Madara had said – the only thing that suicide did was leave broken hearts and confusion behind. Izuna could never do that to anyone else, no matter how lonely he felt without his brother.

"…Goodbye, aniki…" Izuna whispered. "…You're beautiful, and I love you… Rest in piece…"

A/N So this is a vent fic. Just a few days ago one of my friends committed suicide. As hard as that was, my past week was almost exactly like this fic – I only found out about my great grandfather almost ready to pass the same day as the funeral at work. Though he hasn't passed just yet, his time is near, and coupled with my friend's suicide, that hurts more than anything. I had to write this or else I wouldn't have been able to stop crying.

The song that Izuna sings was actually the song my friend, Monga, wrote for my friend's passing. It's called "You Shine, Maddi" and can be found on Youtube if anyone is interested in paying respects to the beautiful girl who was bullied to suicide.