My Best Friend's Secret

Chapter Twenty Two

There had never been a more nerve wrecking moment than now. Misaki traced the room seeing the many eyes that were laid upon him while he stood there at the front. He could feel his Adams apple shudder in his throat, he honestly had no idea what the right words were. But mostly, he didn't know where to really begin. His whole story was a book waiting to be read by the world; a story that was untold and he deserved justice. It was about time he opened that first page.

"I-" He started slowly becoming more tense at his brother's hollow gaze from across the way. God, he felt as if he was betraying him after all the cruel things he had done to him. Misaki knew he should hate him with everything he had, he couldn't though, Takahiro was still his brother. No matter how far he ran or where he hid and even how many times he pushed him out of his mind. Takahiro and him were linked, bonded forever by blood.

"I..I-" Tears were stinging his eyes he had to avert them to the floor even by looking at his black shined shoes he couldn't stop them, the teen tried so hard not to cry but it was a struggle. Misaki frowned knowing this was the time to be strong and hell he was going to be it.

"I was beaten.." The first words out of his mouth were a blessing for Akihiko who stood among the crowd with relief embracing his face. Takahiro was stiff as a statue, secretly fuming Misaki didn't even have to look at him to see his brother's fury. He could feel burning into him.

"In the morning N-Nii-I mean Takahiro would come up with breakfast and a bucket to use for the bathroom he'd empty it twice a day." Misaki uttered grimacing at the horrible memories of still having to release into that pail. "I was poisoned when I was little he used bleach in a bowl of broth.. After I was tested and looked over by the hospital the doctors found I couldn't take in food properly because my stomach lining has been.. badly affected and I still have difficulties with eating now."

The judges spoke among themselves before Takahiro's lawyer butted in however there was evidence they had gathered over Misaki's physical state when he was in hospital.

It was becoming too much for the teen he couldn't find it in himself to raise his voice and shout all he could do was whisper or mutter like a mouse. But when everything was suddenly twisted everyone in the entire courtroom was stunned at the teen's outburst.

"Self inflicted?! Asking for it?! I was beaten! I was raped when I barely even knew what sex was by my brother!" He screamed crying his eyes out. "H-How can you even say that? You don't know what it's like to be locked away from everything you ever knew, after having your parents r-ripped away from you right before your own eyes! You've never experienced the loneliness and fear I felt when he tied his own belt around my throat threatening to hang me and forced me to eat my excrement!"

Even Akihiko's mouth hung open slightly, he couldn't seem to register it all in that his Misaki was fighting for his own right. His Misaki, Akihiko thought on that for a second and he liked it. Good and so he should be fighting, they would both fight to the end to get the bastard behind bars.

There was more whispering half of which hadn't been mentioned in statements yet. "So don't you tell me.. When you have no idea yourself! You don't know anything! You're making me seem like I'm an unruly animal teenage boy who wants to get back at his brother.. Well I am getting back at him, after what he did to me he deserves everything that comes his way! You ruined me N-Nii-chan! You.. You destroyed me.. Almost-"

The corners of Misaki's lips tugged into a small smirk and for the first time in the court room he looked over to him. Brother to brother, Takahiro's burns swept over his once crystal clear features. They always said God moved in mysterious ways after all.

"Almost.." Misaki repeated much calmer this time. "It didn't work though, I only came out of your torture stronger. You told me about the dangerous men out there in the world, how they would come and get back then take me away to hurt me. I should be hiding so you could keep me 'safe' you said. When.. I should have hidden away from you."

Misaki sniffled out loud pursing his lips before he continued.

"A few nights ago.. I just.. I.. For some reason I remembered when was six, some boys from my class picking on me and I told you about them. You said you'd always protect me, you said you loved me and you would never let anything happen to me." Misaki sure he saw his brother briefly flinch at the cracking of his voice when Misaki announced "love" aloud.

I know somewhere, inside of you that you're still Nii-chan. People will probably think I'm crazy for saying this but, I forgive you."

Akihiko scowled. He couldn't seriously believe Misaki was spewing out such rubbish. He took a deep breath and exhaled his fingers reaching the top of his tie to loosen it by a tad. He felt anger and confusion considering he would never be able to understand what the hell was running through Misaki's brain. The Author had to respect Misaki's decisions after all they were brothers.

He thought about his own brother that moment too. Of course, he and Akihiko were half siblings with no real interest of getting to know one another or anything literally. Akihiko knew if it were Haruhiko that had done this to him he would have probably killed him with his own hands.

After more discussion and talk the judges made it perfectly clear Takahiro would have to pay a price. Turned out it wasn't just Misaki's case but he had also assaulted some people and was involved with dirty dealing. When it was his turn to speak the man couldn't; he didn't bother defending himself.

Instead Takahiro stood there and laughed hard. His giggles turning into shrieks then fell into disgusting snorts. Everyone looked at him as if he had gone mad and he actually had.

Authorities took him away on a stretcher while he remained screaming and laughing. It was decided Takahiro was being put away and it didn't seem he was getting out anytime soon. Misaki alone watched the van speed off down the street; sadly his eyes drooped and faintly under his breath he whispered "Goodbye, Nii-chan."

The Author watched him from afar until he joined the teen's side placing a hand on his shoulder he gave it a squeeze and Misaki clasped it intertwining their fingers. Even then he realized how much of a perfect fit they were like a needle and thread.

"Come on let's go home."

Giving it a final pat Akihiko turned his heel and Misaki soon followed after him forcing himself not to look back at the vacant road. It was all over now, Takahiro was gone from his life now being a fragment of his memory Misaki had to carry on. Everything was as it should be.

The teen smiled though at the Author's words. Finally, he had a real loving home.

Standing in the mirror Misaki gazed back at a pair of emerald eyes that belonged to him. Green as grass just as his mother's had been, absolutely beautiful. Currently he was fixing his tie after all it was a very important day.

"You nearly ready Misaki?"

Now twenty-three Takahashi Misaki was excited but a little nervous after all this was the first time he would be going to anywhere as elegant and opulent. He would be socializing with the higher-ups, meeting and greeting so he had to look his best. It was Akihiko's book award ceremony his latest novel had blasted up to the top charts knocking all Authors out the way and burrowing an exhilarating path of his own right past them.

You could say Misaki's life had played out better than he had hoped. Still, he was scarred for life. He had problems eating which hadn't left and suffered from many other traumatic happenings. He got over them though, gradually but they never really went away. There had been many nights that Misaki woke up screaming from his bedroom and Akihiko had rocked him asleep minus falling into a dose himself before breaking out into a barrel of snores.

God, Misaki would devote his life to the man if he could. After everything Akihiko had done for him; Misaki still didn't know how he could ever repay him apart from being by his side forever more. He was so happy, Misaki didn't know whether he could be happier than happy. It still didn't seem real sometimes.

"Misaki?" Akihiko asked once more now emerging into the room.

Misaki hadn't heard his footsteps still thinking he was lingering outside the door he gasped when he caught his gaze in the mirror. Turning Misaki smiled at him, Akihiko noted the crooked state the tie was in and immediately took hold of it to undo.

"Aw.. I finally did it and you've just took it apart!" He pouted childishly.

Akihiko snorted. "It was messy, at least you're getting there though. I've taught you well, haven't I?"

"I don't know about that.." Misaki teased grinning only causing Akihiko to do the same.

As Akihiko shown him again how to do the tie Misaki thanked him.

"You're not too anxious to attend are you? If so I could always-"

"No!" Misaki snapped his face now serious. "We can't, I'll be okay I promise you. I've never been to anything like this before.. If it's for you then I'll be there and besides you deserve it after all the effort and time you spent in making your latest novel."

Akihiko held back a sigh truthfully he was the one who didn't really want to go. He didn't like these types of events and avoided them at all costs but Aikawa and Isaka made sure this time he would be going liking it or not. But after buttering Misaki up Akihiko had no choice but to go now.

"Fine, fine if you're sure that is." Gliding a hand through Misaki's hair he gritted his fingers into it. "I will admit, it still feels awfully strange with you having shorter hair now Misaki."

Not too long ago Misaki had willingly let the barber crop a great deal of his hair off. He felt it was just too long and now was a new beginning. He wanted a change Misaki liked it this way.

He swayed his shorter bangs from his forehead feeling his cheeks go a bit pink it didn't take a lot for him to go coy. "Is it really that bad? I-I like it you know."

"No, my Misaki is growing up that's all."

Resorting his hands into his pocket Akihiko left the room and after Misaki gathered his wallet and such he left too. There was still a matter of time before the ceremony and Misaki got himself a quick drink of tap water.

Akihiko watched him from the corner of the room while he was playing with the buttons of his now cuffed sleeves, eyes glittering even just by observing Misaki gulp from the glass.

"Misaki" He called out as gentle as lambs wool.

Peeking up from his drink he looked over to him.

"You're beautiful," He said.

Glowing from that unexpected comment Misaki turned to the side out of the man's direction. Akihiko smirked it was so obvious Misaki was embarrassed as fun as it was to see he truly meant what he said. After five years they had both come a long way Misaki now schooled and had a part-time job of his own Akihiko didn't understand why as he had already discusses the financial side of things but Misaki was determined. He had said that he did not want to waste anymore time after his childhood was destroyed Misaki wanted to live life to the fullest and accomplish his dreams.

From time to time he did still attend counseling but not as much now. Now there he was, with his special suit on ready to attend his own formal observance. He'd noted that Misaki had grown much more taller too not an incredibly amount but enough.

Misaki's attention flickered over to the best seller on the coffee table just lay there among gifts, flowers and other things Akihiko had received. Picking it up he traced his thumb across the title the materials felt expensive and even the smell of fresh sheet paper smelt alluring. Now being able to read Misaki had some trouble but he managed and he found that he enjoyed it. Mostly manga and graphic novels but books were good too words could also be nice.

"You should read it when you get the chance, I know you're rather busy these days but I think it may capture your interest." The Author moved to the counter collecting his keys.

Chuckling in his throat Misaki bowed his head into the book smiling away then rose up biting at his lips.

"What's so funny?" Akihiko arched up an eye brow.

"You dummy, I've already read it."

"Have you?!"

Misaki frowned at him. "I told you already.. Don't you listen? Well, actually, I've read most your books I just never tell you."

Akihiko slipped his keys into his trouser pocket walking to the smaller man. "And why not?"

"Just.." Misaki began. "I think I prefer admiring you from a far sometimes, mainly through your work. This isnt my favourite though-"

"Misaki" Akihiko sounded stern causing Misaki to look up at him. "I'm sorry if you think.. I'm sorry if it hurt you."

He waved off his hand to the writer. "No, it's okay after all I told you to right?"

"I thought you were joking at first Misaki-"

"I don't care, it's over now anyway right? Even if this book is based on me I'm glad you wrote it because now people know my story. Sure, ha, they'll never really feel what I felt back then but.. You write.. Almost like what I felt y'know? You see me."

Akihiko put a hand on the back of Misaki's neck and they continued to chat about the book, the upcoming night and everything else their way. But he blocked it out only to concentrate further on the warm moist juice resting on Misaki's lips as he spoke; the adoring amount of freckles coating his buttonish nose skin stars in their own little constellation but mostly his eyes greener than grass. The kid had turned alright in the end.

Now heading to the car Misaki put on his seat belt and while Akihiko doing the same the shorter man stopped him for a second. Akihiko was just about to turn the key as Misaki clasped his forearm.

"I just want to tell you," Misaki said staring straight into his surprised gaze. "I love you, Akihiko."

"I know,"

Nervously shifting his fingers away Misaki nodded for him to start-up the car. In a swift moment the Author nearer closer, hot breath tickling Misaki's cheek and clenched his eyes shut when feeling the softness of the older man's lips press on him.

He found it sweet how Misaki lay his fingers on to the spot he'd pecked. Even after a couple of minutes had passed the spot never stopped tingling and Misaki swore to high heavens hoping it would never end.

The vehicle revved into life seconds later and they were down the road. It was early evening the skies a mixture of lavender and cotton candy the clouds were a delightful milky colour Misaki had his eyes on them as they drove. Slowly they were fading with the sky its self, preparing for nightfall.

He had the window open, only a little. The frosty winter air biting at his face, cold but Misaki promised himself he would never take the outdoors for granted again.

Taking another look at the sky and then looking over to Akihiko in the corner of his eyes Misaki pursed his lips. His hand wandered to the Author's kissed mark he'd left and rubbed at it once more.

"You were right,"

Now at the lights the older man furrowed his brow looking slightly confused. "Hm?"

"The sun really did come out, didn't it?"

Akihiko's face was Christmas morning.

"Well, you can always count on tomorrow for things to get better."

"Yeah, yeah, that's true." Misaki leaned his head back watching the world pass out the window. Then looking at his reflection he stared back at the Author for a moment.

"No more rain"

On the very last page of Usami Akihiko's award winning best seller there were the words imprinted from Misaki which stating "Hope carries feathers, rests within the soul while singing the tune with no words and never stops at all."

Hey Guys,

Alright well it appears to be the end of the story sadly enough. Sorry.. I hope you've all enjoyed it! I appreciate every single one of your reviews and favourites! Really it's so sweet! I never honestly, honestly thought this many people would be captivated by this strange tale.

Ye-ah some people messaged me or wanted the story to be sexual and full of kissing.. I didn't want it to end up like that. I wanted Misaki and Akihiko's relationship to be more of a.. Father and Son type one? I mean.. It just didn't fit. Akihiko loves his Misaki and Misaki loves Akihiko, he's more or less thankful for him being there. I hope you guys understand? But thank you!

*Also the quotation at the end is just a reincarnated version of Emily Dickinson's which is one of my absolute favourites and I find it so beautiful I didn't want to use it exactly but I love it.

Sorry for the slow updating.. I'm not really on the Junjou Romantica fandom as much now I've kind of wandered off to other anime fandoms but I think I might have a final story of my own I'd like to share on this fandom. Keep an eye out!

Thank you all so much for the support I'm glad you liked it! Everyone's happy weeeeeeeeeeeeee!