Disclaimer : I do not own Vampire Knight.
I'm sorry for the late update, I really am. :(
Reviews' Replies :
kanamexzero fan : Haha, I hope you are still here. :D Sorry this took me for a while, kind of having so many problems at one time. :/ The story, hopefully, will progress by your expectation but who knows? ;D Thanks for reading this anyway! (hugs)
nz : ;D We shall see about Zero's boyfriend, yeah? I hope I didn't put you into waiting that long. :( One more chapter and this story shall be completed, don't you worry. :D Thanks for reading this anyway! (hugs)
This story is edited by : faded. brilliance. I love you, mate. ;D
The next time they met again, Kaname was having his cup of tea at a restaurant near his mansion. He was so unaware of his surroundings until he didn't realize that Zero came in. All he knew that once someone took a seat across the table, in front of his, his whole body stilled in surprise.
Zero looked at him with an amused smile on his face.
"You mind if I join you?"
Kaname blinked his eyes before he shook his head slightly. "No, you're already sitting anyway."
His remark caused the silver haired man to roll his eyes, but in a good humorous way. Kaname found it amazing that such simple yet almost friendly gesture made him feel as if they had known each other for years.
"I always see you, almost everywhere."
Zero's sudden statement caused Kaname to freeze in his action. He blinked confusedly at the younger man, thinking that his mind was playing tricks with him. It was always Kaname who often saw Zero, not the other way around. He ended up faking a cough to break the suddenly awkward atmosphere and almost blushed when Zero laughed. He wasn't sure whether Zero was laughing at him or something else than that, but Zero has a nice laugh. It was wonderful and Kaname wanted to keep that laughter solely for him.
"Really? It must be a coincidence." He settled down with those words and Zero raised an eyebrow at him.
"Funny, I thought you're a stalker at one point."
This time, Kaname did cough; choking on the drink he was sipping. Zero looked concerned when his coughing took quite a while to ease while Kaname inwardly created excuses in his head to cover his action.
"No, I… I'm your fan, yes, but not that much." The brunette managed a chuckle and he was grateful it didn't sound too awkward. Zero titled his head slightly to one side, the act was adorable and Kaname found himself aching to touch his light strands of hair. Fortunately, a waiter came to take Zero's order, which gave Kaname time to get himself into a more proper state of mind.
Once the waiter left, a sense of awkwardness started to creep between them. Kaname saw Zero turn his eyes to the walking stick that he put next to his chair. The dancer, for a second, look concerned and hesitated to put forth a question. Kaname gave a small smile and decided to take him out from his misery and curiosity.
"I was a soldier."
Zero blinked his eyes at him but said nothing, and Kaname took that as a sign to continue.
"I lost my leg during an explosion, my left leg to be exact."
Kaname expected an apology to come or anything that indicated sympathy from the emotionless pools of lilac. But Zero just looked at him, his eyes softened slightly and he reached out a hand to give Kaname's hand a gentle squeeze. It was comforting and the brunette couldn't speak when Zero said the thing in his mind.
"You must be proud of yourself."
Slowly, a smile appeared on Kaname's face and he let out a heavy sigh, laughter followed and suddenly everything felt so light. The burden of others' thoughts on him, the heavy feeling of incapability and the ache his heart held for so long at his misfortune, slipped out all together.
Kaname thought that he had looked at life like a half-filled glass, not a half empty one but Zero looked at him with a new light, something that even Yuuki was unable to do. Zero saw him for the deeds he had done, not for the aftermath that fell on him.
And it felt wonderful.
"Thank you." Kaname managed to mutter under his laughter and he barely missed the radiant smile on Zero's pretty face. The dancer nodded his head and turned to look around him, as if he just realized the surroundings of the place he just entered.
"By the looks of it, this is an expensive restaurant." He commented and Kaname gave a small shrug.
"Their tea is lovely." Kaname said and Zero raised an eyebrow at him.
"Really? You must be a rich person. You said that you always come to see my performances although my performances are not that cheap. To enjoy such things is not easy for a lower class man."
Kaname chuckled softly and shook his head slightly.
"So pray tell, Kiryuu-kun, why is my status is important? Do you not wish to befriend me if I am a lower class person?"
Kaname expected something awful to come by his awful remark but Zero simply leaned back on his chair, one hand toyed with the white napkin on the table and his eyes darted to meet Kaname's.
"Most rich people that I have met are very arrogant, egoistical, and thought that they own the world. I don't like them."
Kaname blinked his eyes at the reply, something inside of him running fast – maybe his blood, maybe his heartbeat – when Zero drummed the silver tabletop with his slender fingers. His lilac eyes were brighter when he looked at Kaname again and that something inside the brunette – that had ran so fast, so quick, so exhilarating – burst into something unexplainable by Zero's next words.
"But I like you."
It was a shame to say that everyone actually saw the change in him. Kaname found himself smiling by himself at times; when he was in his study, working on the paperwork of his company, when he was in his bed, staring at the ceiling, when he was having his meals during the absence of his younger sister and somehow, it didn't bother him at all to hear rumours about him spreading through his own house.
They said he was seeing someone, that he was in love and that he was ready to commit himself into a marriage. Kaname didn't want to deny all of that. It was true that he was seeing someone but that someone already has someone else tied to him. Homosexuality was not something rare – no longer something loathed by most people – in his place but Kaname wasn't sure how Yuuki would react if she found out that he liked a man.
His friendship with Zero was getting stronger by the day. They sometimes meet at restaurants to talk about their lives, their ideals and Kaname was surprised to know that the man Zero was dating was actually his childhood friend. Kaname didn't know much about him, about Kaito, but Zero said he had helped him a lot when he lost his family and when his career was in the doldrums. By how Zero had talked about him, it made Kaname doubt whether they were actually even in a relationship.
Zero always looks absentminded when he spoke of him. All smiles and emotions on his face were wiped off and his eyes went blank and Kaname was filled with anxiety and curiosity when it happened. He felt as if Zero was hiding something that might hurt anyone – might hurt himself – and it was maddening to not know anything.
It was Christmas Eve when it happened.
Yuuki was unable to return home, as there was something important that needed to be done at her college. Kaname had first felt a little disappointed because he was expecting them to celebrate the day together. He settled down to visit his parents' graves alone. Maybe leaving them flowers and a little bit of talking would make him felt better.
Now he stood in front of his parents' gravestones, smiling absentmindedly as he knelt down to put a bouquet of flowers in front of them. He can barely remember the fond look on his father's face, the love in his mother's touches, and they were nothing similar to the frozen memories of them – the pictures – in their mansion. Yuuki was only five when the accident happened and Kaname sighed softly, remembering the face of their butler when he just came back from school; remembering his look of horror and pain and sympathy. And after that, Kaname forgot when he had ever lived for himself again.
He shook his head quietly, not knowing what to say to the remains of his parents buried 6 feet underground. Maybe a glass of red wine and a book would be nice to settle him down for the night.
He turned to leave, already thinking to invite his butler to have a small dinner with him. The maids and others had already left; he couldn't find it in himself to stop them from celebrating the day with their own families. However, when he was about to go past the gateway, he saw it.
The familiar light silver hair.
"I am going to say that this is fate." Zero raised an eyebrow at him as he raised his tin of warm coffee as well. Kaname chuckled, allowing himself to enjoy the 'fate' as his companion had said. They were sitting under a tree, with a blanket spread on the ground and a couple of warm pastries on top of said blanket. Kaname had asked him to join him at his house but Zero waved him away as if that was something unimportant. Frowning, Kaname had followed him and Zero led them to a bakery – that was surprisingly still open despite the hour and the day – and bought them those.
They sat on a top of a small hill, where they can watch the whole town. Kaname had sent his butler home and managed to assure him that he would be fine. He'd find a way to return back later by his own.
"So what were you doing there?" Kaname inquired as he tightened his trench coat around him. The air was cold but their attire suited the situation. His butler even left them a thick blanket in case if they were to need one. Kaname inwardly debated whether he should make a fire and share the blanket with Zero, but at the end of it, he decided to just stay still.
"I was dancing, Kuran. What do you think I was doing?" Zero replied sarcastically with a roll of his eyes. Kaname frowned slightly before he shrugged it off. They stared at the magnificent sight of the town, quietly as singing voices – singing carols from the town – were carried by the cold winds to them.
"Fine, a little bit shaken if you are concerned."
A small chuckle answered him and Kaname grinned. He shifted to sit closer to the silver haired dancer and he was surprised when Zero leaned on his side once they were close enough. Kaname took the thick blanket and gently wrapped it around them. He could smell the other man; the scent of mint and vanilla smothering his olfactory senses but in a good way.
"They had died today."
Maybe it was the tone that he used, maybe it was how the way his eyes closed, or the sudden shift in his body, that caused Kaname to freeze. However, he managed to find his ground within the next second and carefully wrapped an arm around the dancer's shoulders. They sat there for another moment, watching the cold night take its toll on the citizens of the town as the houses start to light up.
"Did yours die today too?" he heard Zero question him and he shook his head in return.
"No." he answered and Zero said nothing else. He didn't know what happened but later, he felt a hand creep on his left knee and his breath stuck in his throat. Brown eyes wide, Kaname looked down at Zero, who was touching his leg with his eyes fixed on it. He wanted to pull away, because below what the dancer was touching, he could feel nothing. But he didn't dare. And Zero seemed to know that he wouldn't dare to do it too.
It was only one touch lower and Kaname let out a small gasp, the non existing pain was raw in his chest but Zero paid it no mind as he gently returned his hand back to Kaname's knee and rubbed on it gently, as if comforting it.
"Why are you not celebrating Christmas Eve with your boyfriend?" Kaname quietly asked, trying to ignore the warmth the other body was providing because he was not his. Zero just shrugged a little, leaning a bit so that his head was resting on Kaname's shoulder. Kaname sighed softly, turning a little so that his head was rested on top of Zero's instead.
"Well, I think it's past midnight… Happy Christmas, Zero." Kaname quietly murmured and felt Zero shifted even closer to him. "Happy Christmas, Kaname."
He was waiting for Zero as he sat alone in the private booth inside a restaurant. But what he didn't expect was for the silver haired man to enter the booth, looking pale and also determined at the same time. He took his seat across him and his body was shivering out of cold. Kaname wanted to ask what was wrong but he beat him first to it.
"I broke up with Kaito."
Kaname blinked his eyes slowly. As his brain started to process the fact, half of him was jumping in happiness but the other half was worried and concerned. Zero undid his scarf around his neck and discarded his gloves, eyes looking down as if he was trying to find words to explain further. The brunette just sat still in his seat, thinking perhaps not saying anything will make the dancer feel less edgy.
"We're not really in love, you know? Well, for sure, I know I'm not." he started, his lilac eyes looked up to see him and Kaname held himself from commenting. Zero never spoke of his relationship in such a way and he definitely would not even bring it up if Kaname didn't ask first. Then he ran his fingers through his silver hair and sighed.
"I think he was obsessed with me. He found out about you and started to say bad things about you. It pissed me off. This is my life and I have the right to control it as how I see fit." He muttered under his breath and took a sip of warm tea that Kaname had ordered for him earlier. Kaname continued to sit still, his hands gripping his slacks under the table as he waited for Zero to continue.
"So I told him that I had enough of him controlling everything I do and his attempts to stick his nose into whatever business I have. It's annoying. He's just, ugh, infuriating. Too much, Kaname. I feel like killing him at times… and I don't want anything to do with him anymore. It is better to remain friends with someone like him."
There was silence hanging in the atmosphere for a moment. Kaname stared at the silver haired dancer, watching him as he looked down at his cup. He looked forlorn, he did and Kaname wanted so badly to comfort him, to make him feel better.
"So what you want to do now?" he asked him instead. Zero looked up at him and his stare went right through Kaname's soul. Kaname stifled a gasp from escaping when Zero blushed slightly and looked down again.
"You think?" he quietly asked. Kaname's brown eyes softened as he watched him searchingly.
"I'll do whatever I can to comfort you-"
"I have come to a conclusion that I have developed a feeling towards you, Kaname and I am very sure this is not just a crush or something close to that."
Those blunt words caused him to lose his ability to talk again and Kaname almost laughed at the irony of it. He shook his head slightly and a weak chuckle escaped his lips.
"Zero… you're just imaging those feelings."
Zero frowned slightly.
"No I'm not…"
"Yes, you are. I… I really do like you, not just as a friend, but more than that but for you to like me in such manner, that is… ludicrous."
Kaname looked at him, sincerity visible in his gaze and his words, maybe those were the things that caused that ugly frown to appear on Zero's pretty face towards him. The silver haired dancer stared at him, hard, for almost a minute before he put both arms on the table, his expression showing his annoyance. Kaname had come to learn his body language, to read his expression and he understood his gaze so well until it left him to wonder; why is this person still isn't his at all?
"Explain." Zero demanded quietly. Kaname sighed and looked down at his own teacup, shifting his gaze anywhere as long as it's not at the person sitting in front of him.
"I'm… incapable, Zero. I'm imperfect. I have no left leg and your perfection is too beautiful to be associated with me. I can't even dance with you, when dancing is your love." He stated in a quiet tone, almost painfully. He dared himself to look up and saw Zero looked at him with a blank face. Kaname bet the realization must finally dawned upon him because he didn't even think about their differences before. But then Zero reached out a hand and cupped his cheek gently.
Kaname's brown eyes were wide as Zero's serious but sincere lilacs stared at them.
"There will always be someone prettier. There will always be someone richer. There will always be someone better…" his voice whispered like the beautiful melody that always accompanied his dancing, "But they can never be you."
Maybe it was the adrenaline of the moment. Maybe it was because the sincerity was too clear in his lilac eyes that it hurt. Maybe it was because Kaname's heart beated too fast at his touch. Maybe because it's just Zero and Kaname had loved Zero for so long to deserve this.
When Kaname leaned forward and Zero allowed their lips to touch, there wasn't any electric shock-like feeling or any fluttering butterfly in the stomach sensation as what people always said. Their first kiss didn't induce any goosebumps to erupt on their skins. There was no heart-pounding intensity as their hands found each other cheeks to pull them closer. No electric shock, no goosebumps, and no heart-bursting feeling.
But the Earth moved.
A/N : Thanks to Love332, SoulReaper Rukia, kanamexzero fan, ben4kevin, fujoshii92, Polarbear Trancy, bloody child, PeachyQ73, Brookie cookie17, L0N3RBuM, irmina, Lovesucks01, nz and Gwen Truong for all those lovely reviews. :)