Summary: Kurogane decides to confront the idiot mage, also known as Fai, who has had nightmares for the last few nights.

AN: First of all, yes, this is exceptionally cliché, but I decided to do it nevertheless, this being my first fan fiction (apart from the fan fictions I wrote when I was a little kid, though they are ridiculous when reading them now, aha~). This was to try the pairing (whom I adore very much) and in general just fan fiction, because I have wanted to write a fan fiction in quite some time now. I think – hope – it turned out well.

This story takes place after Shara/Shura and before Tokyo. Somewhere in between. So there are spoilers, though I do not believe they are that great.

So without further ado:

Haunted by Nightmares

- A fan fiction by Nathalaia

Disclaimer: I own nothing and am very happy by stating that fact; I couldn't have tormented Fai in such a way if I had made Tsubasa~ Besides, I couldn't even draw if my life depended on it.

Crimson eyes were watching the sleeping form carefully. The whole body was trembling and now and then a low groan or a whimper made it to his ears. The mage was having yet another nightmare.

No matter what, the ninja couldn't find the reason behind those terrible dreams. The dreams that took hold of the blond immediately after he had succumbed to sleep. What fears did the man have? What grief could make him wake up screaming after mere hours of sleep, night after night?

Not that Kurogane cared, of course. He was simply tired of waking in the middle of the night because of the idiot's whimpering and restless sleep.

The ninja watched as the salty tears cascaded down the pale cheeks on the other. He was tossing and turning, shaking and crying.

It had started a week ago. Or, that had been the time Kurogane had noticed the dark circles under the mage's eyes; a sign that he didn't sleep well at night. He didn't ask about it, but the wizard had felt the eyes on him and had smiled cheerfully before calling him one of those stupid names.

Kurogane knew it was meant as a distraction, making him chase the laughing mage with his sword, swearing and threatening. Damn mage.

They had come to this world some days ago – Kurogane didn't remember the name of the world and quite frankly, he didn't care either. But as some stupid higher being wanted, he and that idiot mage had ended up sharing a room, much to the ninja's annoyance. Or, so he told himself. Of course it was annoying. Annoying as hell.

But it was then, the first night in the room, that Kurogane's trained ears had picked up the sounds. The crying. The whimpers. And then he had known the reason for the dark circles: The idiot was having nightmares.

At first, he had ignored it, tried not to care – and he still didn't, dammit! But it had been the same every damn night; the mage would wake with a start, sometimes a gasp, and he would have a haunted look in the cerulean eyes.

Kurogane had pretended to be asleep every time while watching the mage trying to calm himself. And although he would lie down again, Kurogane knew that he wouldn't get any sleep for the rest of the night. That damn fool. He should know that it couldn't go on like this forever. The mage would turn into a walking dead.

So tonight, Kurogane thought while watching the whimpering magician, he would get answers. He would confront that idiot about those dreams that troubled him every night.

Again, he didn't care. He just… Couldn't sleep. He didn't want to comfort the mage nor did he feel the need to wipe away the tears with his hand. No. Definitely not.

Now he just had to wait.

Fai awoke with a muffled cry, hand covering his mouth as on reflex – which it might have become. A quick glance towards the ninja told him that he was asleep and he let out a shaky sigh, hands now grabbing his hair.

Why wouldn't the dreams leave him alone? Why did he have to wake up in the middle of the night, drenched in cold sweat and shaking from fear? The dreams – no, the nightmares – of his past. Of Ashura and his brother… The one he had caused death.

A whimper escaped his lips and he pulled his legs up against his chest, arms hugging them.

New tears welled up in his eyes, cascading down his cheeks, following the traces of the first ones, landing on his knees.

Why oh why wouldn't those dreams release him from their grip? Why…

Because he deserved it. He had killed his brother, had he not? Had been the cause of his own brother's death. His only family. And only he had survived. And still–

A scream nearly left him as a rough hand was placed on his shoulder. He looked up with wide, teary eyes, looking directly into red ones. Fai smiled at the scowling ninja, though the smile was only a shadow of his usual ones. "You should be sleeping at this time, Kuro-puu~"

Kurogane looked at him with narrowed eyes. "Spare me that fake smile. You have had nightmares every damn night these past days. Don't you dare try to deny it. I have been watching you."

Fai just smiled, as always. All the sorrow hidden away behind the false cheeriness. "Everyone has nightmares, Kuro-tan. It's quite normal."

The ninja scowled at him. "Shut the hell up! I thought it to be unimportant at first, but when they didn't stop bothering you–"

"It really isn't something you should worry about." Fai's smile had been replaced by a frown and a faraway look in the sapphire eyes. His voice was soft, almost a whisper.

"Of course it does, especially when we are sharing a room and you make too much noise!" Kurogane had raised his voice slightly, glaring at Fai. "So don't give me that crap. You have been talking in your sleep too, you know. About that Ashura and yourself. And you have been sleeping restlessly."

Red eyes narrowed at the sight of Fai's eyes, blank with salty tears just waiting to be shed. And something else. Fear? Remorse? Sorrow? All of them?

"You turned pale that time, too…" the ninja said, slowly. "That time we got separated from the kid and the princess. And that white puffball. The same name."

Fai had started shaking again, hugging himself, as if to protect himself from whatever. His eyes were downcast, bangs falling down in front of his eyes, hiding them.

Since when had it gotten that long?

Pushing that thought aside Kurogane sat on the bed, observant eyes never leaving the mage.

"Who is he?" Kurogane asked darkly. Not because of anger towards the person for doing this to Fai. He didn't care, remember?

"Look at me," he ordered when Fai didn't answer. He leaned closer to the wizard, placing a hand under his chin and lifted his face, now looking into teary blue eyes.

But that smile. That damn fake smile. The idiot still wore it, despite the tears flooding down his cheeks and the distress clearly visible in his eyes.

"Go to sleep, Kuro-tan," Fai whispered, lips trembling. "Don't worry about me. I'm not worth it."

Kurogane growled and gripped Fai's chin harder. "Don't say that. Don't you dare say that! Whoever made you believe that about yourself? You should know by now that your foolish antics don't deceive those of us who have been around you the last year. Even the kids are starting to notice the fake smile you give us every day, hoping to let us believe everything is fine. It's not."

Fai was finding his hands unbelievable fascinating at the moment. "It's for the better. Please," he said quietly.

"Like hell it is!" Kurogane spat and forced the magician to meet his eyes once again. "Get that? It isn't! You're just worrying the kids even more!"

"They just keep coming…" Fai whispered and grabbed his head with his hands, eyes sealed shut. "No matter what… And they're getting worse. It used to be once in a while, maybe two times a month. But now… Every day. Every night, when I close my eyes, it starts…"

Kurogane's brows creased. The nightmares had troubled the mage for longer than that week? And he hadn't noticed. How could he not have? They had shared room often, and yet…

Without thinking he reached his hand out to touch the blonde's shoulder, but he shied away, breathing too irregular. A whimper escaped the trembling lips.

"Oi, stupid mage!" Kurogane said and looked at the figure crumpled against the wall behind him, eyes shut, hands gripping the hair.

The mage was panicking. Lost in the memories of the nightmares and Kurogane didn't know what to do.

"Ashura…" Fai whimpered.

Kurogane's eyes flared up and he grabbed the mage's wrist. "Hey, idiot! Nothing in those dreams is real! Stop with the delusions!"

"He will come after me…" Fai whispered and looked at Kurogane with pained eyes. "He won't sleep forever… And when he finds me…" His mouth clamped shut, as did his eyes. He was shaking even more now.

Kurogane growled and grabbed the magician's other wrist and hauled him into his embrace. His mother had done the same thing to him when he was a child and had nightmares. He didn't know if it would help the mage, but he felt… Something by looking at the panicking magician. Not anger nor annoyance, just the… Longing to comfort.

His actions seemed to ease the blonde, as the shaking slowly subdued, a whimper escaping him now and then.

When the mage had finally stopped shaking, Kurogane released his hold and pushed the magician backwards to look him in the eyes.

"Is everything all right now?" he asked, more softly than intended.

The magician nodded silently and even though Kurogane knew it was yet another lie, he didn't say anything. It may be okay for now, but the nightmares would come back, he was sure.

Kurogane withdrew from the embrace altogether. "Go to sleep. I'll watch over you." He added the last part quickly, seeing the magician open his mouth to argue.

That clearly didn't stop the idiot. "But-"

"Sleep." His voice left no room to argue whatsoever, so the mage lay down and smiled a tiny small at him. "Thank you…" he breathed and closed his eyes.

Kurogane stayed silent and the magician was asleep within mere minutes. He leaned back against the wall, sitting in the idiot's bed, drifting in and out of sleep, keeping an eye on the sleeping mage; making sure no more nightmares would bother him, if just for that one night.

At dawn the next day, the ninja woke up to find the idiot missing. The aroma in the air hinted that the magician was in the kitchen though, preparing breakfast for the group.

Kurogane stretched his muscles, sore from sitting in that awkward position the whole night. Then he made way towards the kitchen from where he could hear happy chattering; the kids were up.

"Ah! Just in time as always, Kuro-sama," a happy – and annoying, don't forget annoying – voice called.

Kurogane glared at the mage, not only because of the stupid nickname, but the mage just smiled.

"How many times have I told you not to call me-"

"Kuro-sama! Kuro-tan! Kuro-rin! Kuro-wanwan!" Fai laughed.

Mokona joined in, repeating the names Fai had just said and added more.

"That's it!" the ninja roared and unsheathed his sword, "I am gonna kill you, damn asshole!"

Syaoran and Sakura sat at the table, watching the two 'grown ups' running around the kitchen.

"Stay still, bastard, so I can cut you up!"

"Kuro-daddy is mad again!"

"Fuck you, damn puffball!"

And the laughter of the running mage, easily avoiding the ninja's sword. Syaoran was smiling, Sakura giggling, albeit a bit nervous for Fai's safety.

While chasing and screaming at the damn mage, Kurogane found himself thinking that he wouldn't forget this incident. He would keep an eye on the idiot, protect him when needed. No matter the cost. He would wait till the day when Fai would tell him about the past and the dreams.

He would give up everything, do anything in his power… To see a real smile on the idiot's lips.

AN: Well! What do you think? A kind of sappy ending, I know… Do make my day and write a review! Also, I would like to know how I did. This is my first fan fiction after all, as mentioned in the start. Either way, reviewing or not, thank you for reading! I hope you enjoyed this one-shot.