AN: I do not support this couple. I see these two as siblings more than anything else, and so, because of that, this is, in my own mind, a crack pairing. Yet, under the terms I describe in the story, they are completely plausible. I don't like it, but who knows what a broken heart will make one do? Sorry that this is so short, one of my friends mentioned that I should work on telling an entire story without using as many words, for I tend to ramble and get sidetracked. This is an attempt to fix that. I still hope that you like it. P.S., this is my ninety-seventh fanfiction! Three more, and I've written one hundred stories! :D

Disclaimer: I do not own Tales of the Abyss. Namco does.

All throughout the House of Gardios silence reined, quiet except for the crackle of the fire and the sizzle of the food that he had been slowly preparing for the past half hour.

The servants had been dismissed a long time ago, every single one of them paid off and set to families that could use their services, and so they were the only ones there.

She would still be in their room, though by now he knew her well enough to know that she would already be awake and dressed when he walked in, prepared to leave through the back entrance as was her norm. He, as usual, would be able to persuade her to eat something before she left, gaining a few more moments of company before he was once again alone. After a few minutes, she would agree, which would eventually lead, after hours of their complicated dance, to her accepting his invitation to share his bed for one more night. The next morning would repeat itself in the exact same way, and through this routine they would survive.

It had been the only thing keeping them alive for the past two years, and even though they both hated themselves and each other for it, both knew that now, after so long, unless something drastic changed, the pattern would just continue. They needed it to.

They weren't in love, no matter what the rumors that swirled around the marketplace said. They weren't a couple, no matter what their actions might otherwise imply, nor would they ever be anything more than friends. Less, even, for from the mutual acceptance of the fact that they were only using each other to forget their pain had come the realization that they actually cared very little about the other's fate. If one was to die, they would mourn, of course, as was proper for old companions to do for those that had passed on, but it would be more for the loss of their comfort that they would weep. If one became ill, the other nursed them back to health with a frantic frenzy only because they needed each other healthy and whole if they wished to continue their deal.

Sometime, they both wished that they could just leave, could just walk away and learn another way to heal their broken hearts. But both knew that it would never happen, so they pushed those thoughts away as best as they could, hoping against hope that their nightly activities would be enough to drive the thoughts away.

Although her eyes were dry when he entered the room, he could tell that she had been crying, just a few tears to mark what she had lost and regret what she had gained. Perhaps, one day, he might join her, might allow some of his own anger and pain manifest itself in a physical form that would be clear for all to see. Perhaps he might curse the name of the person that had driven him into her arms, just as she berated him for never keeping his promise every moment that she could. Perhaps, one day, they would both give up this charade of being happy with their lots in life and would, together, grieve for the pieces of their hearts that were missing.

But that was something for one day. Today, just as he always did, Guy forced a small smile as he placed a gentle kiss on her cheek and their plates on the small table that they always used for their meals. They would eat in silence, as was their norm, before splitting ways for the rest of the day to pursue their own interests. When she mentioned that she had an afternoon boat to catch, he would point out that none of the ships left until dusk. When nightfall came and she was ready to leave, he would inform her that, as a good host, he couldn't allow her to leave with an empty stomach. And when she mentioned that she was tired, he would just hold out his hand and lead her to their chambers.

Later, when their energies were spent and sleep was almost upon him, it would be to the sound of Tear's soft cries that he would sink into the arms of slumber, his dreams already forming the face of the woman he really loved, just as he knew, when he would awaken a few hours later to the sound of her nightmare, his name would the one to fall from her lips.

Both of them knew that they were just being used and that their partner was really in love with another. But, in reality, neither of them cared. So long as there was a warm body next to them when they slept, to keep the growing pain locked away behind iron gates that leaked and were already almost rotted away by their festering wounds, they were glad. Guy was happy to hear through Tear just how his princess was doing with her red-haired new husband, and Tear was overjoyed that she had a place to live out the rest of her life that wouldn't remind her of the young man she was still waiting for five years later.

Both of them knew that their relationship was wrong, a twisted, broken imitation of what might have been had their lives been different, if the correct Luke had returned to them that day. Both of them knew that the two of them were taking advantage of each other, that the hatred within their hearts was well deserved, that things could be different if they just tried, but truly? They couldn't care.

All was silent within the House of Gardios, a painful echo of the words they could never scream. But within that silence, they were content.