*stumbles out of a giant gift box beneath a Christmas tree and hands Dendrite her (...his?) Christmas wish* :)


Captive Hearts

_Chapter Four_

In His Arms

TheseScarletDropsofINK

Water fell like rain from the silver shower head that was filling the luxurious room with a light fog. Bare feet padded quietly across a marble floor, the creaking of a heavy door following in their wake. With a soft rustle, a white dress crumpled around a pair of delicate ankles like a man falling to his knees to worship the one he loved. Long brown hair slowly plastered to a nimble body, clinging like a lingering embrace over creamy skin as the heated water erased the tempting scent of humans away. For a few minutes, the slender figure stood beneath the warmth of the falling water, enjoying the hush of the shower. Then, slowly, the spray narrowed into nothing but remaining drops that fell from the tips of her hair and raced down the curves of her body.

With a soft sigh, Yuuki Kuran made her way towards the white tub centered in the midst of the foggy room. There was warm scented-water cradled in the arms of the porcelain, shifting beneath large clouds of bubbles as she carefully sunk down into the bath in the hopes of relaxing. As the warmth settled around her once more, a memory, unbidden, of her earlier encounter with Zero began nibbling at the back of her mind.

"How old are you?" he asked, tipping the edge of his glass against his lips as the alcohol lapped at his tongue. She could hear as the cool liquid went down his throat, reminding her of a thirst she'd mastered controlling even amongst the sea of easy victims. When his gaze returned, there was irritation filling them. "You shouldn't be allowed in here. You're a minor and it's a school night. Go home and stop worrying your parents."

A drop of water splattered onto the surface of the bath as Yuuki held her arm up, watching with mild fascination as the liquid pearls trickled down like stars falling from heaven. Soap suds clung to her skin, taking their own time to vanish; tarrying much like clouds did. She watched each drop quietly, listening to the distant ringing of her own laughter in her mind as another memory fought to take shape in her mind. It was a memory from decades past.

"Have you come to join me? The water is refreshing!" She called out, her short hair dripping with the droplets from the fresh lake in the forest that surrounded her home. She was in her morning gown when Zero had found her splashing in the water without a care in the world. He'd been searching the grounds for her and was left breathless by the time he reached the edge of the lake, scowling down at her invitation.

Taking a moment to compose himself, he glanced away from her inappropriate attire, acting as though there was no blush on his face from the sight of a lady scantily dressed and in a lake, no less. When his gaze returned, there was irritation filling them. "How old are you? This is why you cause your brother to worry."

Water fell from the bath as Yuuki raised her knees, her arms tightening around her legs as she leaned forward to prop her chin against them. That person really is Zero…. She'd had her doubts, but meeting him face to face…Surely, this nostalgic and painful feeling was the very same thing Kaname must have felt that first time he'd met the boy. There was absolutely no mistaking it. His scent, his eyes, his personality; the air about him, everything- it was all Zero. But even so….

The shadow loomed over her as she stood on trembling legs behind the tall figure before her. There was a loud bang as the gavel slammed against a surface, the sound harsh and sharp, ringing out like a gun shot to her ears. Too dark to see clearly in the mist of shadows, even to eyes as trained and powerful as her own, she heard, rather than saw, the ominous voice that bellowed those haunting words….

"It is the council's final decision..."

The water sloshed, splashing onto the floor as Yuuki's arm tightened around herself, a whimper pleading for that memory to be washed away- to have never existed to begin with. However, even with her eyes clenched shut, the tears managed to stream out, the words continuing to echo around the room.

"Kaname…"

_Chapter Four_

In His Arms

"Sleep with me."

Zero gaped at Kaname. His fingers clinging to the edges of his glass as he mentally struggled to the surface of clarity, only to find himself flailing into the depths of befuddlement. His neglected drink was arrested in the air, yearning for the warmth of the lips that were parted in surprise. In the back of his mind, he was pretty certain of what he'd heard, yet, with the alcohol buzzing so noisily, he was also pretty sure he was wrong. He had to be. Otherwise, Kaname had just told him (because that hadn't been a question, really) that he wanted to have sex. With Zero. Together. The two of them. With each other.

Ever so eloquent, he breathed a, "…huh?"

Kaname, who was having a difficult time of deciding which he'd prefer to do: kiss the adorable expression off Zero's face or force out a chuckle and play those words off as a joke, was deliberately nonchalant. He turned away, distracting himself with his wine as a couple walked passed behind them. Deciding on his latter choice, Kaname began to speak, only to hear another voice whisper at the back of his head, its hot breath teasing the nape of his neck with the delicious temptation of: what if he says yes?

"Have you ever had one night stands, Zero?"

The question threw Zero off. Of course he'd had them. Dozens of times…okay, no. Maybe less than that, but he'd still had them. Unsure of whether his answer would protect or harm him, he answered in a hesitating tone. "…yes."

"This is no different," Kaname explained, turning to meet his gaze. The low lighting lit up the russet of Kaname's eyes, giving them a red-glowing effect. It made him look a bit otherworldly, and why Zero was suddenly distracted by those eyes, he had no idea. Then Kaname added, "Aside from me being a man, of course."

Of course, Zero nodded taking a quick drink. Then the words hit him and he blinked into the bottom of his cup before returning surprised eyes to Kaname. So he was serious? He had actually…. "You…" he began, but couldn't find the words to continue. Kaname, the mysterious (stalker) customer, had actually told him to sleep with him… Zero wasn't sure how to react to this, so he just gaped. He gaped until he felt an inane need to laugh bubble up inside of him. Because, he scoffed, "that is a whole lot different."

Seeming to find the same humor in the situation, Kaname's lips pulled up into a small smile. "I suppose it might be," he admitted good-naturedly. Seeing the open humor in his present day lover was refreshing. Frankly, Kaname was glad that Zero hadn't threatened to kill him at this point and opted to make light of the situation.

He couldn't say he wasn't disappointed, however.

The quiet between them resumed, but it was not one filled in awkwardness. It was comfortable, even after Kaname's slip up. They'd be separating soon, Kaname realized as he finished up his wine. Out of the corner of his eye, he watched Zero. There was a thoughtful expression on his face- it was one Kaname had often thought suited Zero's profile perfectly. His silver earrings glinted with the orange glow of the low lighting beneath the strands of hair that brought shooting stars in the sky to mind. Eyes lowering, Kaname admired the smooth expanse of skin that ran across a strong jaw line and tempting neck like a succulent invitation- one that was agonizing to ignore.

Forcing his gaze higher up, he peeked at Zero's face. At the dark sooty lashes that encased eyes unlike any gem in existence and lips- lips that were like a phantom touch over his own: a whispered memory that reminded him that Zero Kiryu was his. He belonged to Kaname and he had been stolen away…

The sudden tumult of bitter emotions burned in his chest. With his fingers near to snapping the stem of his glass as the anger of his loss was brought back to life, Kaname fought to calm himself. Over the years, his anguish could not be assuaged, but the rage and hatred that had all but consumed him had withered in the face of time and sorrow till there had been nothing left of it. The emotion had been unsettling; it had licked at his insides with white hot flames till he was all but insane with the need to put them out in anyway possible- even at the cost of his own life.

If they hadn't taken Zero from him, Kaname wouldn't be sitting here with his cherished lover and pretending to be a stranger. He wouldn't be holding back so valiantly because Zero would be-

"Okay."

Kaname's thoughts stuttered to a stop. He turned to Zero, who was still staring at his empty drink on the bar, as though Kaname had only imagined his voice and he hadn't spoken at all. Was Zero accepting or had Kaname missed something in the midst of his sudden brooding? So lost had he been in his bitter emotions that the quiet bar, with its soft lights and the soothing piano in the background, had all but faded from his consciousness.

The piano music stopped playing and all that was left was the sound of the bartender dumping tins into the ice bin and the soft chatter of the few other occupants in the room. There were a million thoughts that were screaming in Zero's head, but he was pointedly ignoring them all. "I'm not gay, but I'm not opposed to those sorts of things. So, okay. I'll sleep with you."

"Are you certain?" Kaname asked quietly, as though the words were clinging to his throat in hopes that Zero wouldn't have a chance to change his mind. Zero was leaning forward, his hair trying to hide away those precious eyes from Kaname's sight. He nearly reached out to move them when Zero's lips twisted into a wry smile.

"Yeah...I might be a bit drunk, though."

*.。. o ~o .。.*

The hotel room was beautiful. From cherry wood furnishings to silk tapestries and sofas that looked like they'd cost five times as much as his own did. Zero had suggested they go some place else, maybe even back to his place, but Kaname had insisted on paying for a room for the night- despite Zero offering to pay half the price. Kaname had instantly refused, which didn't sit well with Zero at first. But the truth remained; he was a struggling student after all. It wasn't like he could afford a place like this. That must mean Kaname had a lot of money. That, or he was way too prodigal.

Walking towards the large window to stave off his sudden nerves, Zero took a peek at the view of the night. Lights lit up the town in soft hues of white, blue, and orange just up to the borders where nature prevailed. In the distance, the dark forest stood proud like a gateway to the mountains that looked over their fairly large town. The moonlight above, borrowing its light from the sun, generously cast a glow over what the artificial lights could not reach.

A figure suddenly appeared among the night view, and Zero shifted his perspective, watching quietly as Kaname approached him through the reflection of the window. Their eyes met through the glass, Kaname lifting his hand and offering Zero a flute of red wine. Turning, Zero took it with a quiet, "thanks." He made it a point to play oblivious to the way Kaname's fingers purposely brushed his own. He raised the glass to his lips, if only for a distraction; the red wine flowed smoothly down his throat.

Curiously peeking at Kaname, Zero found him staring out into the view that he'd been admiring a few seconds ago. Not knowing what to say, Zero studied his drink. It was ridiculous to think the wine would help him to relax when the alcohol he'd consumed beforehand had already done that and more. If he were fully sober, Zero was sure he wouldn't be here right now. Turning the glass flute in his hand, Zero stared at his own reflection in the dark liquid. "Can I ask you something?"

Kaname turned his russet eyes to regard him and when Zero glanced up, it was like he was still staring into his own glass. "Of course."

"Is there..." he hesitated, then continued in a careful voice, "Is there a reason you visit the restaurant every night?"

Lilac eyes caught the pressing of Kaname's lips just as the man turned away. He was slowly swirling his glass of wine, but Zero doubted he was even aware of it. Kaname's gaze was out into the distant night, a heavy look in his dark eyes. Unsure of whether his question would be answered, Zero distracted himself by imbibing at his wine. Maybe he shouldn't have asked.

"A very long time ago, I lost someone very precious to me." Zero looked at Kaname surprised. "Since that day, my heart has never been able to rest. Yet, every time I step into that restaurant...it makes me feel closer to the one I lost." When Kaname looked at him, Zero felt something heavy settle over his heart. "Being there helps to ease my mind. Even if only a little."

Captivated by the open emotions stirring beneath the surface of Kaname's wine eyes, Zero found it hard to turn away. He hadn't been certain of what he'd been expecting to hear, but it hadn't been that. Despite Ichiru's claim of Kaname only showing up to stalk him, Zero had always felt that there was a genuine reason that Kaname came by without fail. Feeling guilty for prying, Zero began to apologize, but was interrupted by Kaname, who gestured towards the middle of the room.

"Would you like to sit down?"

With a nod, Zero followed Kaname over to the ivory sofa. Inconspicuously, he sat at the far end, faintly admiring the furniture's comfort as he placed his glass over the coaster on the low table. There was a thick, elegant vase that made an impressive display with the healthy green stems of white orchids covered in butterfly-shaped blooms that branched far out of its hold. Zero wasn't the type to understand what or how flowers had meanings, but he wondered if these flowers were appropriate for the occasion. Well, unless there were flowers that meant 'hey, thanks for the sex, man,' he doubted any would be appropriate for the situation.

There was a tugging in the pit of Kaname's stomach- the kind that made one feel as though someone were forcefully tearing away at his body in search of something; searching for the lock that would tear open his wounds and allow him to spill the entire truth to Zero. Searching for a way to change the boy's fate. Again. However...the memory of his bloody body, of the light fading from such vibrant and determined eyes...he just couldn't bring himself to loose his lover once more. The fear of such a thing was too intense for any force to break through, claw away as it might.

Touching the flute glass to his lips, Kaname tasted the crimson liquid that swam through his body, assuaging the hunger that was adamant in waking Zero. It was not the rich, aromatic taste of the wine he'd procured, but rather a mixture of chemicals with a lingering trace of blood. Casting a glance at Zero, Kaname noticed the way the boy was staring at his lap, his fingers fidgeting over the fabric of his jeans.

"Are you nervous?"

Zero started. "I've never had sex with a guy," he spluttered, his eyes wide as his own words reached his ears; a soft tinge of embarrassment colored his cheeks. "Um..."

Kaname chuckled. "I remember."

"What?" Zero frowned, feeling like an idiot.

"Earlier, in the bar, you mentioned never being with a man before," Kaname clarified, watching Zero's memory working behind those sharp eyes of his. "Do you not remember?"

"Yeah, I guess I forgot," Zero mumbled lamely, chewing his bottom lip as he tried to clear his head. Kaname watched the simple action as a faint memory began niggling at the back of his mind...

"Why must you constantly do such things?" Kaname demanded, leaning up against the door frame of his study. The young man sitting behind the large oak desk glanced up from his book, his lower lip slipping free from his teeth; his eyes daring an invitation. Kaname stepped closer, intent on capturing those lips with his own. "It's as if you are constantly seducing me. Do you want me so badly, Zero?"

"I think I-" Zero broke off as Kaname shifted closer, their legs touching as Kaname's eyes bore into him. Zero's heart gave a thump against his chest, his eyes widening a fraction as the russet pair of eyes smoldered into a darker, more alluring shade. Swallowing the lump in his throat, Zero remembered that breathing was a necessary survival process and he should probably be doing it right now...

"May I?" Kaname's voice was a breath against his skin, drawing Zero's attention towards the lips that were reaching for his own. In reply, Zero nodded, so imperceptibly, he was sure it had gone unnoticed; not that it stopped the butterfly touch of the other man's lips against his own. A small breath spilled from Zero lips as he pulled away. The tips of fingers grazed gently against the curve of his cheek and a warm palm settled against his jaw. Zero's eyes flickered over Kaname's face, wondering at Kaname's expression. Just who was this man and why did he make Zero feel so...

"Can I kiss you again?"

Zero's laugh was soft as he reached up to catch the hand against his face and leaned into the touch. "I kinda think its ok not to ask," Zero murmured, then said with more certainty, "You don't have to ask." So Kaname didn't. Pressing his lips firmly over Zero's for a few seconds before backing away and leaning his forehead against his.

Kaname watched Zero's eyes flutter shut, his tongue running over his bottom lip to taste Kaname's kiss, his pale throat constricting as he swallowed. Moving his thumb towards Zero's mouth and watching its progress, Kaname followed the path Zero's tongue had taken. The soft breath that tickled the tip of his thumb was a sweet reminder that his Zero was here. Still breathing. Still alive.

Still in Kaname's arms...

Ignoring the constriction in his throat, Kaname's thumb fell to the dip beneath Zero's lips. Do you still remember the touch of your lover? The words echoing in his heart demanded, and with little pressure, Zero's lips came apart; Kaname rewarded them generously.

Zero inhaled a rush of air upon contact, his mouth easily molding to Kaname's own as Kaname kissed him. The scent of sweet vanilla filled his senses as the pressure of Kaname's lips pushed against his mouth. Teeth sank gently down onto his lower lip, scraping softly as Kaname took his time pulling away; leaving Zero's thoughts to become nothing but muffled mumblings in the distance, too overwhelmed in the light of Kaname's soft kisses to continue existing.

Never before had Zero kissed nor been kissed this way; with small, sensual and lingering movements that felt so raw to the touch. The warmth of Kaname's hand on his jaw, his thumb stroking intimately against his cheek. Kaname's lips building a gentle force against his own- it all felt too-

"...Zero..."

A female voice chimed in his head.

Zero flinched, incidentally breaking the kiss as his eyes snapped open. They were greeted buy a surprised pair that quickly showed concern. "Are you okay?"

"Yeah," he replied, a beat too quickly. Kaname gave him a suspicious look, but said nothing. Instead, he rose to his feet. His hand, which Zero was still unconsciously holding, gave a gentle tug, urging Zero to follow suit. When he stood, their eyes met and it was as if Kaname was looking for something in the depths of Zero's soul- reassurance, maybe? When he seemed to find whatever it was he was searching for, he gave Zero a small smile and lead him towards the bedroom. Disregarding that strange voice, Zero followed.

The alcohol must still be buzzing in his system, after all.

*.。. o ~o .。.*

There was a large window in the bedroom, much like in the living room, it showed off a beautiful view of the night. They hadn't bothered with turning the lights on, choosing instead to allow the moonlight to provide the lighting beneath its gaze, which was currently fixed on the large bed like a spotlight. The blue haze illuminated the white, crisp sheets and soft pillows that looked a lot like fluffy clouds. When Zero thought of what that bed would be used for, he couldn't help but swallow nervously, turning his gaze to the man he'd be sleeping with.

Kaname was cast in the shadows, just out of the moonlight's magical reach. Even so, Zero could see and feel the intensity of the man's eyes as he turned to him at the foot of the bed. Beneath his chest, Zero's heart gave a sudden tug, as though it were trying to get his attention.

"I'm sorry," Kaname whispered, lifting his hand, Zero's fingers caught in his grip as the man brought them to greet his lips. Again, he repeated, "I'm so sorry."

Sorry for what? Zero wanted to ask, but could only battle off the urge to blush at the tender action. Zero wasn't used to being treated so affectionately that he almost balked when Kaname pressed a kiss to his palm, taking a deep breath of Zero's scent. Tugged by the very same hand that Kaname had been kissing, Zero was pulled a step closer, eliminating the distance and bringing him into Kaname's personal space. Taking a moment to look over his face, Kaname bent forward and touched his lips, hands reached up to hold his head in place.

Zero gripped the sides of Kaname's shirt as he fell into the sensations of Kaname tasting every inch of his mouth. When a light press of lips touched the corner of his mouth, Zero's eyes lazily fluttered open. Kaname pressed another kiss to his cheek then lowering his lips to Zero's jawline, draping his lips beneath Zero's ear. Turning his head, Zero willed the man to continue. As if in reward for his efforts, firm lips rubbed against the edges of his tattoo, forcing Zero to draw a sudden breath into his lungs- especially when a simple kiss in that area failed to suffice. With a few more teasing pecks and gentle nibbles, Kaname began to mouth his neck.

Zero bit at his lip, swallowing hard as a hot tongue ran over the sensitive region, followed by another nip. Zero was surprised to find himself reacting this way over an area he hated people touching- it had been why he'd gotten the tattoo in the first place. It was meant to be like a 'no touching' sign to warn people off. Of course, it often had an opposite effect by calling attention to it, but never mind that. Back then, with all the alcohol in his system, it had all made perfect sense when Ichiru explained it. Lifting his chin, Zero let out a soft sigh as Kaname continued on his original journey before his detour of the inked skin.

His Adam's apple worked as a kiss was pressed over his throat and lips rubbed along his skin, dropping kisses on their way back up. It was the same route Kaname had taken on the other side, only in reverse. Kaname's destination, this time around, would be to his lips. Zero, expecting and patiently waiting, fell into it with a deep, open mouthed kiss.

Their mouths played a sensual game of give and take, back and forth as their lips met. Reaching out, Zero wrapped an arm around Kaname's waist, the other sliding up into the man's long hair. Kaname, much on the same page, caught his hips and pulled him in close. The feeling of another man's body pressing against him broke through the fuzzy haze of Zero's pleasure, reminding him that he was not in the arms of a woman. And then Kaname's tongue slid along the seam of his parted lips and the thought sunk beneath the haze once more.

Kaname's blood was humming, seeming to come alive with the realization that his lover was pressed against him once more; like he had never been gone to begin with. It set his insides alight with a warmth that threatened to consume him. The soft touch of his tongue on Zero's lip was gifted by a slight tightening of Zero's fingers in his hair, the tip of his tongue darting out to flick against Kaname's. The touch was quick, retreating in an instant that Kaname could have only imagined it happened. And then Zero did it again, as if he was too shy to taste. Or perhaps he was merely teasing him. Either way, Kaname forced Zero's mouth open with his own, a soft growl giving away his possessiveness, and ran his tongue over Zero's for a longer taste. The moan his lover let out was like electricity in Kaname's body.

With Zero's hot breath crashing against his in their desperate kiss, Kaname slid his hands down Zero's back, feeling the strong muscles at work as he dipped his fingers into every contour of Zero's body. With Zero's mind a muddled mess, it took him a moment to realize Kaname's lips were now on his collarbone, the strands of dark chocolate hair tickling his face. There was a hot tongue gliding against his skin and hands that were working to glaze his mind over with pleasure. It was working, too; the sensations were swarming him and making his head spin. Or maybe it was the alcohol. It could have been both, really. At this point, there was no telling. Not that Zero cared either way.

There was something strangely desperate about the feelings coursing through his body that Zero really didn't know how to handle. The stress of his nightmares on a daily basis; his pathetic love life, his work and school- they were all taking their toll, and he'd be lying if he said this wasn't some kind of way to escape from it all. A rushed breath stuttered into his lungs when Kaname finally moved away to let him breathe. He took Zero's hand (again, he noted) and ushered him to sit at the foot of the bed.

Obediently sitting (and not because he was weak-kneed), Zero watched as Kaname lowered himself, kneeling before him. Graceful fingers caught Zero's leg, sliding down a jean-clad calf as he removed his shoe. Zero blushed, a bit flustered by the act of someone doing something that felt so intimate.

"Kaname," he began, his voice filled with his uncertainty.

A small smile lit up the brunet's face as he placed Zero's shoe to the side and began pulling his sock off. "I wonder what sort of fools those women must have been," Kaname murmured, "to be able to have had someone as stunning as you and still walk away."

There was an ache burning a whole through his chest and all Zero could do was stare down at this handsome man- this stranger- who was making Zero feel like...Dark eyes lifted beneath heavy lashes and as their gazes locked, Kaname lifted his ankle, pressing a gentle kiss to the curve at the top of his bare foot. His wine-like gaze burning into Zero's as his warm breath teased his skin.

A heat began to spread across Zero's face as Kaname set to work on the laces of his other shoe, as though he hadn't just stolen Zero's breath away and sent scattering signals of emotions throughout his body. Zero had never dwelled on his failed relationships, but to say they hadn't left an emotional scar would be a blatant lie. Kaname no longer spoke as he went about removing Zero's shoe, though his hands left lingering messages in the form of gentle caresses. He repeated the same kiss on that foot as well. Averting his gaze, Zero held back a rush of strange emotions as Kaname's fingers slipped around his neck and pulled him forward for a kiss.

Kaname lingered there for a moment, simply breathing in Zero's heavenly scent and savoring the taste of his lover's lips against his own; enthralled by the mercy of being able to feel him once again. There was a soft pressure as Zero kissed him back, and it was only then that Kaname hooked his tongue under Zero's upper lip, tugging carefully as he nipped at it. It drew a sigh from his lover and with a final kiss, he pulled away. They breathed in each others' air and Kaname, taking the opportunity, began to openly memorize the stormy gaze of Zero's eyes.

He was so stunningly beautiful, it was overwhelming. To think that Kaname had survived decades without being able to look into these lilac eyes that smoldered into such a beautiful dark shade whenever he was aroused; to have been able to go on without the one he loved more than anything in the world. It had been so unbearable...

Zero frowned as Kaname leaned his forehead against his shoulder, his hands resting on the bed on either side of him. Licking his lips to savor their last kiss, he spread his legs a bit and pulled Kaname closer. The brunet seemed surprised, judging by how rigid his back suddenly went, but he obliged nonetheless. As Zero threaded his fingers through Kaname's hair, he remembered what Kaname had said earlier and things sorta clicked into place.

"The person you lost was your lover, wasn't it?" he asked quietly. Kaname didn't react as he kept his face burrowed in Zero's shoulder. "Do I look like him?"

Without a word, Kaname pulled away, kneeling before him with his head lowered and eyes raw. Zero watched him silently, waiting for him to speak, but Kaname didn't say anything. So Zero reached out to touch his cheek. "I don't mind, Kaname," he murmured quietly, but Zero had never been good with words. Hoping Kaname was good at reading actions at least, he leaned forward and pressed a kind kiss to the corner of the stranger's mouth.

I can't be your lover, but at least for tonight...

Whether he understood or not, Zero didn't know. He was too busy getting lost in the kiss that, as Kaname angled his head, grew deeper until he was dropping kisses down Zero's throat and nuzzling the curve of his neck. Kaname mouthed his collarbone as his hands slid up Zero's toned sides, bunching up the fabric of his shirt and dragging it upwards until it was over Zero's head and falling to the floor. The shiver that ran through Zero's body had nothing to do with the chill of the air and more to do with the dark eyes that openly swept across his body.

Kaname took a moment to appreciate the flawless skin on the boy's body, uncertain of whether it pleased or dismayed him when he realized the familiar scars he had once taken enjoyable hours to memorize were all gone. A fleeting disappointed flickered through his mind, reminding him that this lover wasn't the same. That he'd died once, and the ache clenched at his heart. Wanting to be rid of such pessimistic thoughts, he moved closer, his hands sliding over to grip at strong hips.

Kaname's tongue traced an imaginary line down Zero's collarbone to his heart, repeating the route several times before Zero realized the path was making him sigh from pleasure and something else; something more poignant, he couldn't quite explain. As warm hands ran gently across his newly exposed skin, his muscles flinched away from the touch before being warmed over by the heat of Kaname's smooth palm. Running his hands up Kaname's clothed arms, Zero realized Kaname's shirt was still securely on and decided to remedy that.

There had been a scar here, Kaname remembered, kissing at its invisible trace gently. Kaname had never known the reason for this one scar. Zero had had plenty of them and Kaname had learned every reason for them. All but one, that is. When it came to this scar, Zero had never told him. Kaname, however, had always been aware that it was the one that hurt him the most. So Kaname had done all he could to erase the bad memories that came with that scar and create his own.

Zero's hands were trembling as they sought out the black buttons of Kaname's silk shirt. It was like being tortured, Zero decided as he closed his eyes, biting his lip against the sounds that were close to tumbling out of his mouth. Since when had he been so sensitive? Zero wondered as Kaname began drawing patterns up and down his body, finding everyone of his weak spots like he was the only who put them there. His fingers dipped over every curve; never giving any area more than a seconds worth of attention before they'd sweep around to his back, nails sinking slightly into his skin as he raked them softly down to his hips.

When Kaname's lips found his again, their kiss was languid and unrushed, though Zero's fingers were impatient as they tugged Kaname's shirt apart. His mouth opened and closed against Kaname's, their tongues seeking each other out. As the kiss became heady, Zero's hand snuck passed the gate of Kaname's shirt, sliding against the warm, toned skin of his chest. It was definitely different than the soft, pliant feel of a woman's body.

Kaname broke the kiss to whisper his name against his lips and Zero felt the shiver that ran through Kaname under his own palm. A firm hand pushed back against his shoulder until Zero was lying back against the bed. Kaname leaned over him, his black shirt falling on either side of him to hide Zero's body from the gaze of the moon.

This is it...Zero thought as he felt Kaname's hand sweeping down the flat of his stomach, pausing as it stumbled across Zero's belt. A jolt of excitement ran through him as he felt Kaname's breath against his mouth, his hips pressing slightly down against Zero's. Heat rushed to his cheeks as Kaname began nibbling on Zero's lip. His hands began to undo the belt buckle as thoughts raced through Zero's mind. Slowly, Kaname set to distracting him. First with his lips, then with his hands, and finally with his body.

Zero...

...forgive me...

...I can't let you go after all...

*.。. o ~o .。.*

Something was off. Yuuki snapped awake, instantly reaching for her weapon on the bedside table. However, her hand was caught and she was pinned down to her large bed by an overwhelming strength. Her eyes were wide as she struggled, staring up into the crimson pair that burned through the darkness of her room. Fangs bared as strong fingers pulled her face away from her neck- they sunk down with a sharp sting.

She tugged at long hair desperately, whimpering as she felt her blood surging into a hungry mouth. She couldn't...she didn't want him to see... Clenching her eyes shut, she tried frantically to clear her mind- her heart-, but she knew it was useless. He would see it all. "Kaname..."

Judging by the way his eyes had burned with such an intensity, she knew he wouldn't stop. The way he was drinking her blood, draining her...He hadn't been this despairing since Zero died. Cradling the back of his head, she felt something wet against her cheek and knew it wasn't her blood.

Don't cry, Kaname, she wanted to say, even as her own tears fell.

*.。. o ~o .。.*

There was a distant sound of water trickling from a river and the chirping of birds as they flit playfully through the air. Some sounded close, some too distant to possibly be heard. Yet, he did. He heard them. There was a small breeze that blew through the leaves, making them rustled in contentment. He shifted, sinking into the fresh comfort of the sheets and the mattress that was swallowing him alive.

"Are you awake yet...Zero?"

Someone was touching his cheek; tracing his lips...placing a gentle kiss... Who...? Zero's brows pursed as he tried to open his eyes, but they wouldn't budge. "Zero...don't make me wait an eternity...its time for you to wake up now..."

Forcing his heavy eyelids open, silver lashes fluttered as he stared at the blurry outline of the man hovering over him. He could just make out brown hair and a smile...that smile... "Are you awake now, Zero?"

"Ka...na..."

Zero blinked, staring up at the ceiling of the hotel room. The distant sounds of nature were replaced by the sounds of the town bustling out the window. The sudden switch from his dream to reality had been too abrupt and it left his head spinning. The light that was spilling in from the room was almost painful and his brain gave a nice little throb to thank him in kind for drinking past his limit last night.

As he laid there, allowing the tendrils of his dream to return in vague pictures, he knew, without needing to look that there was no one sleeping beside him. There was no one else in the room. Running a hand over his face, he let out a sigh that sounded more like a groan. As he shifted himself up into a sitting position, he couldn't help but wince. Memories of last night rushed through his brain like a flood, too rapid for him to catch much of. Not that it mattered. He got the gist of it. With a lingering glance at the cold space beside him, Zero got out of bed and headed for the bathroom.

*.。. o ~o .。.*

"This place is sooo boring," the young seventeen year old girl sighed as she meandered down the street. There was nothing but humans in this boring old town and none of them were even remotely interesting. With a wistful sigh, she wished she was back home in the place she'd grown up in. At least there, she wouldn't be so bored out of her mi-

"Ow," she mumbled as someone crashed into her, nearly making her topple over and drop the umbrella that was protecting her from the nasty little bit of sunshine.

"I'm sorry, are you all right?"

"I'm fine," she began to grumble as she glanced up at the human who'd come close to running her over. Her breath caught at the sight of a young man with silver hair and pretty eyes that reminded her of a purple gem her mother had bought her for her fifteen birthday once. Her heart gave a little bump beneath her chest. She hadn't known humans could look this beautiful before. Oh no! What-what should she do? The man was looking at her strangely. She could feel her face being lit up like a fire.

"You sure you okay?" he asked her and even his voice was sweet to her ears. She quickly nodded, beginning to back away as her heart thumped painfully. She'd never felt this way before, how was she supposed to handle this?

The silver haired boy sighed as the girl began to walk away, stammering under her breath like he had cooties or something. Running a hand through his hair, he let out a sharp breath. He really didn't understand girls. Pulling his phone from his pocket, he dialed his brother's number, hoping to actually get through this time. Just where the hell was he? Didn't he say he was going home last night?

There was a small click as the phone was answered and he scowled. "Hey Zero, where the hell are you? I wanted pancakes like an hour ago."


TBC

Wow, talk about awkward transitions, right? And foreshadowing *makes creepy sounds* Oh wait, I'm late. Halloween passed, huh? Oh well, at least I made it in time for Christmas, ne? I think I started this fic around this time too. Ooh~ I got it right on time! Its the fic's one year anniversary~ *sighs dreamily* Happy Birthday to you~ Happy Birthday to you~ As a gift, be sure to leave your pretty little reviews below. :D (I should be embarrassed that its been a year and I've only written five chapters...)

Ah, I only wish I could have worked the kinks out of this chap. Honestly, this is not my best work. I can't even begin to express my frustrations over this chapter. I rewrote the lemon for this around four times and the final result was a lime. *throws her hands up in surrender* Kaname didn't even get to shove his *gets her mouth covered by Zero* Ah, well. Plot wise, it turned out best this way. Almost as though there are missing puzzle pieces in the story somehow. But seriously, this was the hardest lemon-not-quite-lemon I've ever had to write. This story is hard to write. Writing from Kaname's perspective and all that he knows and then switching to Zero's 'he knows nothing' perspective while trying to find a balance between the two- its all headachy and...and...I'm loosing my hair, guys. I'm seriously going bald. ;A;

Okay, okay, I'm done complaining. Thanks to every one of you who hangs in there (even though I'm a horrible author when it comes to updates). Plus, I might be posting up a new story or too (...-_- wrong two...I knew it, I'm going to fail my Eng exam...), which might not be a good idea, but these plot bunnies...they're quite intimidating when they want to be. Anyway, I hope everyone has a good time and isn't like me- sneaking away from family to post a story. Wah, its almost midnight! *needs to sneak back* Oh, Merry Christmas and stuff. :)