Ren-sama's Note:

Hi, everyone! Thank you for all the enthusiastic reviews that I received from the last chapter! For those who have some questions, don't worry because they will be answered little by little as the story progresses. Anyway, here's the next chapter! ˆoˆ


Chapter 8

Zero went back to his room before he sighed. He sat on his table and started writing the report on his emergency mission. It was brief and no other hunter was mentioned in the letter. He mentioned that there seemed to be more Es hiding in the place and that some noble class vampires were sent to hunt down the Level Es as well, but that they all left without contact with Zero after the Level Es were exterminated.

He knew he was kind of hiding his interaction with the vampires, and the mere fact that he was covering some information on his report was kind of shocking even to him. He was not the kind to actually withhold any information. But the deep guilt was eating him from the inside out… And now that he saw how Kaname and the others lived here peacefully and quietly, he didn't know if what he was doing was really right.

He knew he was having some confusion because of the earlier incident, but he couldn't help it. His supposed ally had turned his back on him and even indirectly participated in turning him into a vampire, ambushing him twice while his supposed enemies were the ones helping him when he was in a pinch. Anyone would have doubts… He knew he swore loyalty to the Association, but it was only because they were the ones who treated him as family, and he wished to repay them. But if the Associations were the ones behind this… Zero gritted his teeth and immediately shook his head. He was just here for a few days and his loyalty was already wavering. How could he stoop so low..?

After some more inner struggles, he only took a little break before he started writing again, this time more serious and longer than the other one. It's his first report about his secret mission. He wrote that for now, he saw no alliance or any of the sort between Cross and Kuran that went against the law of the Association. The only thing that could have been tying them together was the fact that both of them seemed to be wishing for co-existence between vampire and humans. The Cross Academy was indeed divided between humans, or the Day Class students, and the Night Class students, which were the vampires. The Day Class students and their teachers didn't know anything about the true nature of the Night Class students and treated them as celebrities because of their physical appearance and their mental capabilities. But aside from that, they didn't seem to know anything at all. And the vampires were all following Kaname Kuran's orders. They did not bother Day Class students even though some of them did go to school grounds in the light of day. Prefects serve as the ones who took care of students and patrol at night, and Zero had become one of them. The vampires didn't drink blood, but a kind of pill that relieved their thirst. Of course, there were those who couldn't take the pills because their body wasn't used to it. But those vampires were said to be drinking from other vampires as well, not from humans. It was Kuran's order.

Of course, Zero didn't mention anything about the attack on him which turned him into one of those vampires and the hunter who shot him.

After that, he slept for the night while thinking of how he would sneak out of school tomorrow to deliver the letters to the town's post office.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Before Zero knew it, two weeks had already passed without much incident. He started patrolling the school, only to end up being in the same roses-filled lakeside every time his mind wandered off. There wasn't much contact between him and the other vampires and he was partly grateful, for no one was bothering him at all, and also partly irritated. His mission was going very slowly but he knew he should be patient. He knew that rushing things would most likely bring more failure than success, based on experience. He was still the same aloof and cool person that his female classmates tried to devour with their eyes. And even after two weeks, the only classmates' name he knew of were Yuuki's and Kaori's, but he had never talked with the latter. He always ordered different meals in the school cafeteria but the only thing he drank was milk. He also realized that many of the students in the cafeteria also drank milk now.

Today was Saturday morning and he knew there should have been a letter for him from the Association. He woke up with the intention of going directly to the post office, but was interrupted with a knock on the door.

"Come in." He said as he put on a sleeveless shirt. The garment had a white v-shaped collar but its overall color was black.

"You're looking really cool in there." Cross smiled as he entered the room and saw Zero dressed like that. Zero gave him a small smile. By now, Cross knew that smile meant that the hunter was embarrassed, but nevertheless happy.

"What's up?" Zero answered casually as he let Cross enter. He knew it wasn't like Cross to come in his room so early in the morning just to greet or praise him.

"There's a letter for you, from the Association." Cross answered, and Zero was glad he was able to receive that information without any panic or fear showing on his face.

"A letter?" He asked simply. "Must be their answer to my report about the incident last week."

"It's here." Cross simply answered as he put the black envelope on the bed. Zero gritted his teeth when he saw it. He knew that Cross was also a hunter. There's no way the Chairman wouldn't realize that something about it was off. That Zero had a secret mission…

"Why did they have to deliver it to him of all people?" Zero thought as he uttered a 'thank you.' Cross though, even if he knew something, simply smiled and turned around to leave. Zero was quite surprised that he voiced something he knew he shouldn't have. "Aren't you going to ask about it, Chairman?"

Cross turned around. He was still smiling. "About why is the envelope black if it was about the answer to your report? Even though the envelope last week was obviously red in color? Because it wasn't the answer to that red one, right?" He then sighed as he walked closer and patted Zero's head kindly. "Zero-kun, it's a black envelope. It means you mustn't disclose any information about it to anyone. It also means that it's not my place to ask."

Zero felt more like crap than ever. He looked down as he let Cross pat his head. "Sorry…"

"Now, now, Zero-kun." Cross chuckled. "There's nothing to apologize for. I'll leave now so you can open the content." He turned around again and this time, he opened the door and left.

"I'm really sorry…" Zero uttered as the door closed behind Cross. He sighed as he looked at the envelope. He sat on the bed and took it. The content was a simple 'good job' and some crappy half-assed gratitude about his work. The Association didn't find his report satisfactory at all. Aido's words of 'you did a good work' had more sincerity in them than the letter. And now he thought he knew the reason why. Because he didn't report any anomaly… He sighed again as he put the letter back in the envelope. Now, he needed to burn it as a form of secrecy. He lit the corner of the envelope with a lighter and let the fire eat everything.

He looked at his desk and saw a small bottle that was still half full of crimson-colored pills. He was already thirsty since the other day but he didn't want to take the pills anymore, at least he didn't want them as long he could bear the thirst. There were fewer students today because there were no classes on Saturday and Sunday, so he thought he could at least hang on until Monday before he would take at least one of those disgusting pills. He now wondered how those damned vampires could take something as disgusting as blood pills.

"Zero?" He heard Yuuki call on the other side of the door followed by some knocks.

"Come in." He simply said as he put the bottle in his pocket.

Yuuki poked her head on the door and smiled when she saw Zero. "My friends and I are going to town to have some fun. Come with us."

"Your friends are all females, right?" Zero asked. "No, thanks."

"No, no! There are males too!" Yuuki said as she tried to persuade him. "I just think that it will be better if you will come with us…"

He looked at Yuuki and saw how those chocolate puppy eyes tried to persuade him. He couldn't help but smile. "Alright. But I will immediately leave if I get bored."

The look on Yuuki's face was so dazzling he couldn't help but smile again. "Alright! I'll make sure you're not bored then!"

He didn't change his clothes anymore because he just put it on a little while ago. He wasn't the type to dress appropriately just to suit the occasion after all. Four people, two males and two females, were waiting for them in the living room and Zero immediately thought how he wanted to go back in his room. The four of them were all Zero and Yuuki's classmates but Zero only recognized Kaori among all of them so Yuuki had to introduce them to one another. The cool guy wearing black long sleeves was Yoru. Sai was the one with the glasses and Rika was the one with waist-length braided hair. That much Zero could remember. They were very friendly, except Yoru who kept on annoying the hell out of Zero by visibly ignoring him or snorting every time he tried to talk. And thus, their little stroll in town started.

"Ah, let's all go to the cake and ice cream shop!" Rika suggested happily. Kaori and Yuuki also looked excited and the guys had no choice but to follow. Yuuki looked at Zero and she looked really happy when he nodded. She didn't want Zero to feel out of place at all.

They all ordered their favorite flavors of ice cream cake before they sat on the table beside the glass window. They all talked animatedly while waiting, except Zero who just waited in silence. He waited for his order to come as he watched the people outside walk. Some of them looked very busy and some were walking very idly. He wished his life was more like the latter. Not that he disliked his current life. He just felt very far from the students beside and in front of him, talking about nothing but school and social life, talking about others' situations, and about their dreams and everything. He couldn't have that. Especially because after this, he'd die…

"I bet he'll drink milk again after finishing the cake and ice cream." Zero's thoughts were interrupted when he heard the lines. It seemed Yoru was really doing his best to annoy him this whole time. The hunter didn't react nor look at his classmate. He knew it was infuriating the other to be ignored.

"What's wrong with that?" Yuuki pouted. "It's not like there's a law that says a person cannot drink milk after finishing an ice cream cake…"

Sai chuckled. "He was just joking, Yuuki."

Zero turned his attention to the waiter who held a tray containing all of their orders. He was just too glad he could finally eat and get the whole affair over with. He didn't like hanging out with these kinds of companions much longer. He was the serious type of person and he didn't know why the hell Yoru was picking on him. He didn't realize it was basically because he was a serious type that his classmate found it fascinating to irritate him on purpose. Zero's order was a chocolate ice cream cake. He looked at it for a while, thinking why the hell he ordered something so sweet when he wasn't that much of a fan of sweet things. He smiled when he realized it. Well, because it's chocolate in color…

"What, you remember something from chocolate ice cream cakes?" He looked up only to see Yoru smirking. It didn't feel that he was simply teasing Zero at all. The guy was mocking him.

"What's wrong with you?" Zero asked. He was seriously annoyed by now that he longer cared about their so-called socialization, if one would call it that. Yuuki and the others stopped from eating and worriedly looked at the two of them. "You've been annoying me ever since earlier."

"Z-Zero-kun…" Yuuki called. "Yoru-kun, stop picking on Zero-kun!" Yoru shrugged and started eating. Zero also calmed down a bit with Yuuki's words and ate his fill silently. But all of them ate with so much tension that the ice cream cake didn't taste much delicious anymore. The moment Zero finished, Yoru started again.

"It's not like I find you really boring, but I just think you're not the type to hang around with us." Yoru continued, ignoring Yuuki's words earlier. "I suppose you feel too out of place right now. It's not like you're really part of our group anyway. You only bring tension to us by making us conscious of you. It's really annoying, you know. Well, feel free to leave."

"Just say it if you don't want me here." Zero's glare was starting to turn deadly. "I'll leave." And as he said that, he immediately stood up. He was beside the glass window so it was an effort to get to the isle.

"Ah, Kiryuu!" All of them turned around when they heard a very familiar voice. Aido looked surprised to see them. Zero looked very annoyed earlier, but he too was surprised.

"Aido." He simply said before he went out of the damn place. Aido followed him with his blue gaze.

"What's wrong with him?" He asked, more to himself than to Zero's former companions. But before he could even think too much, Yuuki almost bumped into him and ran after Zero. He then looked at the remaining members of Zero's group who equally stared at him. At the far corner was a guy who looked really annoyed. He smiled because aside from annoyance, he could clearly see that the guy also felt concern.

The blonde vampire bought some cakes before he too went out of the place.

"Zero-kun! Wait!" Yuuki called as she ran after the silver-haired hunter. Zero was really annoyed at the moment so he didn't want to see Yuuki or anyone. He continued walking briskly without looking back, like he was hearing nothing. He didn't even know where he was going. He knew he was not welcomed in that school. He was someone who lived his life everyday with the thought of not seeing the next sunrise. He was hunting and killing vampires so that ordinary humans could enjoy an easier life. His life was too different from theirs even though they were in the same age group. He was currently doing a mission which could kill him any moment. And after that, he was resolved to killing himself just so he would not attack anyone. It hurt so much. It hurt how he lived in constant darkness, like the race that he hated. Or rather, used to hate.

It hurt how he felt so alone… He felt so alone suffering just so others could live ignorantly.

Just now, when he saw Aido, he felt that the blonde was someone who knew him better than any of his classmates. Aido was sometimes annoying, and really annoying, but Zero felt that he was warmer than any of the Day Class students, except Yuuki of course. Maybe it's because he was really changing into something he wouldn't have imagined he would be. Maybe… maybe, just maybe, he was starting to see himself as one of the vampires…

After some minutes, Yuuki was at last able to catch up to him and immediately grabbed his arm. "Zero-kun, wait!"

He sighed before he turned around. "What?"

Yuuki saw nothing in his eyes but quiet pain and rejection. She couldn't take it so she cupped Zero's cheeks with her small hands. "We're sorry… I'm really sorry…"

"I just realized…" Zero voiced quietly. "I don't belong here."

"N-No! Of course not, Zero-kun!" Yuuki couldn't help it when her tears started falling down her cheeks one by one. "Y-You… You just think that way. It's not like that for me at all!"

Zero smiled painfully. "Sorry for making you cry." He started wiping Yuuki's tears just as she hugged him. He was distracted by a loud round of applause and as he looked at their surrounding, he immediately felt his cheeks colored. They were in a busy street and they just created a scene. Some of the people were also teary-eyed and touched, and some thought it was a film shooting. Zero immediately held Yuuki by the wrist and walked away without another word. He was embarrassed to the bone.

"Ah, s-sorry, Zero-kun." She voiced, also a bit embarrassed. She was also sorry for Zero because she knew the guy was relatively a shy type.

"Ah, no. It's alright." Zero said. He turned to Yuuki and smiled again. "Thank you. Will you still go with your friends? I'll go back to school."

Yuuki was still undecided but she knew Zero needed space. "Of course." And she ran towards the opposite direction. Zero looked at her leaving figure for a while before he started walking again.

How he wished he could just be like her… warm and free…

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

The town was crowded despite being relatively small. Zero decided he didn't want to lose his mind by hearing so much noise and voices at the same time so he went to a more secluded place in the area. He saw a small shop of pasta and decided he wanted to eat something aside from the cake. He opened the door of the shop and saw, to his surprise, Ruka and Kain sitting at the far corner. The two noticed his presence immediately but they didn't react much. They just glanced at him before they talked to one another again.

Zero sat in one of the tables and immediately noticed that the place, a small restaurant, was somehow high-class. The people wore office uniforms and many wore branded clothes made by famous fashion designers. And Zero, who was only wearing a sleeveless black shirt and tight jeans, was relatively ignored by the waiters. But the waitresses were very much happy to serve him because he looked so gorgeous and cool despite what he was wearing. He ordered the thing he usually ordered in restaurants, carbonara and milk, before he let himself relax. He didn't know why he felt quite relaxed even though there were two noble class vampires present in the place. And now there were four of them, excluding Zero.

He glanced at the door to see who had just arrived, even though he could already recognize their presence, and saw that it was Takuma followed by a petite guy whose name was Shiki, or so Zero remembered. Shiki was a famous magazine model but he was second only to his very beautiful mother. Zero's eyes darted back to his own table as he watched Takuma and Shiki sat at the table beside Ruka and Kain's. The four of them greeted one another briefly before they all went back to their privacy.

Zero felt that another vampire entered the restaurant and he sighed. The place was starting to be filled with vampires and his hunter senses was starting to get really alert. He felt the fifth vampire get nearer to his table until he was merely some feet away from Zero.

"Oy, Kiryuu." Zero sighed again when he heard who it was, not that he didn't recognize the male's presence earlier. Aido looked annoyed when Zero didn't act like he heard him. "Oy, Kiryuu!"

"Shut up. I heard you the first time." Zero looked behind his shoulder and saw Aido with a scowling face. "What is it?"

"Why did you leave your friends back there?" He sat in front of Zero's chair, across the table even though he wasn't invited.

"What is that to you? And they're not my friends." Zero simply answered. Aido was silent for a while. A waiter immediately asked about his order. Aido simply said that he would be ordering what Zero ordered. The hunter immediately arched an eyebrow. "Do you even know what I ordered?"

"Of course not! Why would I know something like that?" Aido said like he was too proud of it. "I simply said that so they will not bother me anymore. And you didn't answer my question."

"If you don't like being bothered, then don't go to restaurants." Zero answered. "And I don't have to answer. Like I said, it wasn't your business."

"But that guy looked really…" Aido shrugged as he let go of the topic.

Actually, he was more concerned that Zero headed to some place where there weren't much people. The hunter couldn't have handled those Level Es in the old church if he was alone. It was obvious to the blonde that the mission was somehow a trap made to ambush Zero. His Kaname-sama said so too. The blonde, after leaving the cake shop earlier, immediately looked for the hunter in the town and finally felt his presence inside the restaurant.

The two of them didn't talk anymore. Zero just looked at Aido with half a glare and half curiosity. He didn't know what the blonde vampire was plotting. He could've just gone together with his four vampire friends but he was sitting with Zero, on the other side of the restaurant. Aido acted like he was cool and surly, glaring at Zero with more intensity than the hunter's. After a while, their order came and Aido looked really shocked at the meal he was about to eat.

"W-What the..?" He blurted out as he saw the pasta filled with milk and the glass of hot milk. It was almost lunch time and Aido couldn't believe Zero would order something like that.

"I told you. You should've asked me what I ordered before you ordered the same thing." Zero couldn't help but smile a little at the shocked expression of the blonde in front of him. He felt really victorious at the fact that Aido wore an expression far from his usual surly or cool or lady-killer expression. "And by the way, why don't you sit together with your friends? Surely you noticed their presence ever since you entered?"

"Are you an idiot!?" Aido hissed, flabbergasted at Zero's lack of consideration. That's why he thought the hunter was really annoying. "Can't you see the four of them are in their own world?! They are all too occupied with their lovers!" He sighed in exasperation at the obvious fact that he had to say.

"T-They're lovers..?" Zero was only too surprised to hear that. He looked at the two pairs and saw that the way Takuma looked at Shiki was indeed very different from the way he looked at other people. Kain, whom the hunter found as someone very annoying, also looked very warm and happy right now. They all appeared more dazzling than usual. "Even Ichijou and that guy Shiki..?"

"Of course!" Aido was too surprised at Zero's reaction. "Can't you see how they can't seem to take their eyes off one another? Really, Kiryuu, I thought hunters have really keen senses…" He shook his head in disappointment. "Do you know that vampire lovers tend to drink only from one another?"

"…Really?" Zero didn't know that.

"Of course, sharing blood is something someone will never let his or her lover do with anyone else." Aido said in an academic manner. "It's because sharing blood is also a form of sex." He couldn't help but blush at his own words.

"Really? So you did what you did to me knowing all of that?" Zero arched an eyebrow. He wouldn't like it if Aido nodded. But to his relief, Aido actually disagreed more than enthusiastically.

"You're wrong! Sharing blood is very different from just biting another person!" Aido sighed at the thick-headed hunter in front of him and Zero had to fight the urge to strangle him. "Listen, blood sharing is only possible when two lovers are bonded together… Oops, I cannot tell you any more than that. Even though you're a vampire now, you're still basically a hunter. Hunters are our enemies." He simply said and shrugged. He doubted if Zero would have a reason to actually do anything against his friends. The hunter would be someone totally heartless if he did that. And Aido would do everything to hunt him down. He thought that but the innocent way Zero's face looked as he stared at the two pairs of lovers was simply stunning Aido couldn't help but stare at him. So he was innocent to those kinds of things…

"What?" Zero asked when he noticed Aido was looking at him in a rather peculiar way. He felt like the blonde wanted to eat him or something. "You look like you want to eat me. Don't tell me you're thirsty again…"

"Of course not!" Aido visibly reddened at the accusation. Although Zero's assumption was innocently wrong, it wasn't too far off. "How about you? Aren't you thirsty at all? I mean, you haven't drank blood from anyone ever since you became a damn Lev–, vampire."

"It's none of your business." Zero merely said as he started eating his meal quietly. Aido too was forced to eat his order because he couldn't bear to be accused of being snobby when it came to food, especially by the hunter. After their meal, Zero was satisfied and full. Aido found the meal not as repulsive as he originally thought. In fact, he kind of enjoyed it.

"Where are you going?" Aido asked when Zero put the money on the table and stood up.

"I'm going back to the dorm." He simply answered before he left Aido on the table.

"Oy, wait!" Aido did the same before he too stood up. He was about to run after the hunter but when he saw the two pairs of vampire lovers stifling their grins, he immediately stopped and glared at them. Kain chuckled as he told something to Ruka. The female vampire laughed softly at the supposed joke which Aido knew was about him. Takuma went back to talking with Shiki as the latter shrugged. Aido was really annoyed as he walked out of the place. And by then, he had already lost the hunter who also had a habit of hiding his presence.

Zero walked in the crowded street alone. Some people would glance in his direction with malicious grins or eyes that wanted to devour him but he didn't have any time for any of them right now. He knew he should hurry back to the Sun Dorm because he could feel his throat burning again. But that was precisely the reason why he also didn't want to go back. He didn't know if he should hurry up or if he should stay away from the school. He just knew he should stay away from this many people. Zero started to run in a direction with fewer people to at least keep his thirst at bay. He could smell their blood even though he could see no crimson liquid flowing outside their bodies. It had been two weeks since he last drank from Kaname and he was already thirsty. He took three pills last Saturday and also three pills last Wednesday but they weren't enough to completely satisfy his thirst. The pain was too intense that just thinking about the feeling was making him feel sick. He abruptly stopped when he realized something. He fumbled his pocket for the bottle he knew he was carrying. He was thankful when his hands felt the familiar bottle. Even though his black sleeveless would immediately turn red later, he knew he needed to take the pills or he would lose to his vampire nature right here and now.

Zero stopped in a seemingly abandoned alley and hastily opened the lid of the bottle. His eyes were glowing red and his fangs were so aroused. They wouldn't forget the first time they bit someone, and they were visibly aching to do that again. Zero immediately put three pills in his mouth and swallowed them without water. He leaned on a wall and looked at the clear sky. The sun didn't hurt him much but he still felt a bit uncomfortable. He wondered how Aido and the others were able to endure the prickling heat of the sun. They had their lovers with them so he guessed they wouldn't even notice there's a blazing sun up in the sky right now…

He felt his muscles relax a little as the pills did their momentary role, to lessen his thirst, and not to completely satiate him. He only looked at his surrounding when he already felt better. The place was filled with debris of different sizes. He started looking at the familiar place and found that he was leaning on the side wall of an abandoned old church. This place again… The last time he went to the place was about two weeks ago but there wasn't much change in the area, except for the fact that there's a vampire presence in the church right now. Zero instinctively reached for his belt, only to find that his Bloody Rose wasn't there, again. The vampire was a pureblood and he somehow knew it was Kaname even before he entered the church and inhaled the pureblood's scent. He walked as silently as his vampire and hunter nature allowed, even though he knew the other party had probably already sensed him even before he sensed the pureblood.

"Do you know how it shatters my pride when you to choose taking the pills you hate while constantly depriving yourself of my blood?" A voice behind him said and he knew, even before he turned around, that the pureblood was already watching him ever since he entered the place.

Zero was surprised even though he already knew the vampire was there. For Kaname to suddenly speak from behind him somehow alerted his hunter senses. If Kaname had the intention of killing him, the pureblood would have probably succeeded without Zero being able to fight back. If Kaname would be the one to hunt him down… He'd surely die before Cross could even shoot him. He wasn't afraid but he felt very uncomfortable being alone with Kaname in a place where he was almost ambushed to death. "What are you doing here..?" He was visibly tensed when he spoke.

"Investigating." The pureblood answered simply before he walked gracefully, approaching Zero, stopping only a mere foot from the hunter. "Why do you want to take those pills more than my blood?"

"Like I said, I don't want to drink blood from anyone, especially not you… at least as long as my mind works." Zero looked away. He didn't like it when Kaname was so near his face. He could feel the pureblood's breath on his cheeks and it was making him uncomfortable.

He was looking away so he didn't see how Kaname smiled. "I didn't think you'd swallow your words this fast."

"I'm not swallowing my words!" He glared at the vampire. He felt really offended. Of course, Kuran wouldn't understand his situation because the damn pureblood was born a vampire. He didn't know that a human would find it really horrible and disgusting, on top of being inhumane, to bite another creature just to suck blood. He wouldn't understand how horrible it was to feel so helpless when he's thirsty; or how terrifying it was to feel his mind going blank as his hunter virtues and beliefs goes outside the window.

Zero was about to walk towards the door, which was behind Kaname, when the pureblood grabbed his arm. Zero wondered why people liked grabbing his arm. Yuuki did the same thing earlier. He turned around sharply and Kaname was surprised at the intensity of the emotions hidden deep beneath those amethyst hunter eyes. "What is it that you want?!" Zero growled at him. "Do you find it really amusing that I suffer and try to struggle in obvious futility?!"

"No, actually…" Kaname's eyes, which Zero noticed were closed, finally opened. They weren't chocolate in color anymore, but crimson, deep glowing crimson that made the pureblood look even more powerful and intimidating. "Actually, Kiryuu, I'm thirsty too… You just had to get near me in the worst possible time…" Zero's eyes widened when he realized the situation he was currently in.

Kaname found Zero's reaction very amusing. Those slightly parted lips and those wide amethyst colored eyes were really gorgeous and awfully seductive. Zero felt Kaname's hand on his chest and he was pushed gently. He didn't know what happened until the impact of that act shoved him on the wall just beside the door, at least three meters from where he was standing earlier. Zero felt like all the air in his lungs was forcefully pumped out by the force. He coughed some blood and it flowed out of his mouth in a way that made Kaname lick his lips. He stared at Kaname as the latter, who seemed really amused, smiled seductively. Zero knew that if he was just an ordinary human, he would've immediately passed out, or worse, had many of his bones broken.

"K-Kuran… What do you think… you're doing..?" He asked while in pain. He was about to wipe his mouth with his hand when Kaname suddenly appeared in front of him and held both of his hands above his silver hair. The pureblood used only one hand and his other hand slipped under Zero's sleeveless shirt and explored the hunter's muscle toned but slender stomach. Zero gasped at the cold hand and tried to struggle from Kaname's grip, especially when the pureblood's hand continued to travel upward.

Zero felt his heart beating faster as Kaname's hand slowly went nearer and nearer it. The pureblood wasn't satisfied and he started nibbling Zero's left ear. His mouth travelled lower and lower, sucking the skin behind the hunter's ears. Zero shuddered as the hot mouth and tongue started to turn him on. His mind was starting to black out from the intense pleasure of the touch and it was hard fighting it. "Kuran… Don't… please… stop it…"

Kaname wasn't really the type to lose control from thirst. He just had to isolate himself for a while and go back to the dorm after sunset because the sun would drain more of his energy. But then the hunter just had to go to this abandoned church of all places. Zero's hunter blood was just too strong to resist and before he could even prepare himself, he already lost it. He was acting on his instinct and he felt that making Zero feel deep pleasure would make his blood even more wonderfully mouth-watering and delicious.

The hunter couldn't help but groan when he felt the pureblood's totally aroused fangs graze the skin of his neck. Kaname was gripping his hands tight and his body was basically trapped between Kaname's warm, and also hard, body and the wall. He gritted his teeth as he tried his hardest not to scream or worse, moan. He almost forgot to breathe when Kaname's fingers pinched his nipple. He thought he would really pass out. He didn't know these kinds of sensation because the only sensations familiar to him were the senses of pain, danger, and death. Kaname's mouth travelled down his neck until he abruptly stopped and proceeded to the other side of his neck, the one where there's no hunter seal. Zero's whole body felt so hot and he knew he was kind of blushing from either the heat or embarrassment.

"Kiryuu… You smell like milk…" The pureblood whispered seductively. "Do you want me to feed you a different kind of milk..?" Zero at first couldn't understand what the pureblood meant, but when the meaning dawned to him, he was so shocked and embarrassed that he originally wanted to say something really harsh. But when Kaname started licking his ears again, he felt his strength draining away as he shivered, leaving nothing but weak moans escaping from his parted lips.

He shut his eyes tightly when he felt Kaname's fangs poking his skin. But Kaname didn't thrust them in but continued licking his neck. The pleasure was too much for Zero to handle and soon, he couldn't help but moan with every stroke of Kaname's tongue and every movement of the pureblood's hand under his clothes. Kaname was about to dip his fangs in the hunter's neck when from the back of his mind came a nagging thought. Zero was seriously thirsty and biting him would only increase his thirst. And above all, by biting him so forcefully like this, he would be hurting the hunter… again. His partially opened mouth slowly closed with much stronger self will than he could ever muster, even though the tips of his fangs still protrude. He let go of Zero's wrists and took a step backward, still slightly shaky because of his thirst.

"I'm sorry…" He voiced when he saw the almost petrified and wide-eyed hunter looking at him. His amethyst eyes reflected fear and embarrassment, and his body was trembling so much.

Zero was surprised that Kaname stopped. He was really sure the pureblood would bite him. He was first bitten when he was still human so the pain was so excruciating he didn't know if he would fight or would just let himself pass out and die. And now, the same thing was about to happen. Kaname was basically gentle in his caresses and his fangs were really not that intimidating. But Zero's experience was still so raw and his hunter side was rampaging inside him. He didn't even notice he was trembling until he saw that his hands were. But aside from those, he felt that he was really blushing deeply and a part of his body aside from his fangs was also aroused.

"Sorry…" Kaname repeated before he left the place in his pureblood speed.

Zero felt his knees give out when the hard body pinning him on the wall suddenly disappeared. He was breathing raggedly and he knew it wasn't all because of fear. He stayed in the old church for a while, alone and uncaring, until the sun set and the place was enveloped with darkness.

"You're late!" Cross yelled at Zero in his child-like manner the moment the hunter came inside the dorm. "Yuuki said you're supposed to have been here before her but she got back an hour ago!"

"Sorry…" The young hunter smiled guiltily.

"By the way, we have a visitor." Cross turned serious again. "Come eat dinner with us, Zero-kun." It was Cross's turn to look apologetic.

Zero wondered who the visitor was. He came to the kitchen with Cross and saw, to his shock and embarrassment, the person he didn't want to see at the moment, or maybe forever. At that same time that he stepped into the kitchen, Zero felt the presence of pureblood inside the room. Kaname must've been trying to conceal his presence from him. Kaname, however, didn't act like there was something wrong. He merely glanced at Zero before he went back to talking happily with Yuuki. But it was Yuuki who talked to Zero when the latter came in so Kaname couldn't do anything.

"Zero-kun, you're back!" She said happily. "Yoru said he's sorry…" Zero was a bit surprised at the sudden topic. Actually, he had already forgotten about that because of the more recent incident with a certain snobby pureblood vampire with chocolate eyes. When he didn't answer, Yuuki continued. "We scolded him pretty hard for saying those things to you."

"You didn't have to." He said casually and felt an overwhelming hostile aura from the pureblood. Kaname was glaring at him and he didn't know why, until Yuuki told him the reason.

"Um, this person is my older brother." She introduced them. "He's Kaname-senpai. I'm sure you've seen him…" Zero was only too surprised at what he heard. And his eyebrows immediately creased. "Kaname-senpai, this is Zero-kun, my classmate and also a prefect. I'm sure you've already seen him in his patrols."

"I thought I told you not to call me Kaname-senpai. Just call me nii-san or nii-sama." Kaname said in a very gentle tone that Zero didn't know existed. And aside from that, Zero realized that Kaname actually didn't even pretend to greet him. The pureblood simply ignored the introduction by saying something like that. The young hunter sighed as he sat as far away from Kaname's seat as possible, though he wasn't that much successful seeing that the rectangular table was not a large one. He looked at Yuuki and Kaname. The two did have many things in common. Their eyes had the same color as well as their hair. They also had the same slender stature and the same creamy-colored skin. But Kaname was a pureblood vampire, the Leader of the Moon Dorm, and Yuuki, though sometimes a bit of a monster when she's angry, was definitely and unmistakably human. How could they be siblings..?

Kaname and Yuuki, and sometimes Cross too talked animatedly while eating. Zero ate his share in silence but he didn't have the time to listen to their sibling conversation. So in a sense, the three of them – Cross, Kaname, and Yuuki – were a family… And he, he's nothing but an outsider eating with them tonight.

He remembered how he used to eat together with Ichiru. The two of them often ate alone because their parents were always in some mission or another. "Ichiru…" The name was nothing but an unconscious and silent whisper, but Kaname heard it nevertheless. And Cross too.

The older hunter immediately stopped talking and looked at Zero worriedly. "Zero-kun, are you alright?" He was beside Zero so he immediately put his hand on the hunter's back and patted Zero gently.

Zero looked at him in half surprise and half anxiety. He felt that he was caught doing something forbidden. "Of course. What is it?"

"Nothing. If you're alright, then that's okay." Cross tried to smile but knew he couldn't relax anymore after hearing that name. It's been a long time since he last heard it. The incident also hurt him so, and he knew Zero felt worse.

After their dinner, Yuuki wanted Kaname to talk to Zero more but Zero excused himself. "I'm still going to do my homework." Yuuki pouted but she still nodded. Of course, he had done that homework ages ago. He just needed some privacy, and possibly, some alone time in some place where there was no pureblood presence in the air.

"You can do that later, right? It's just Saturday. Why are you in so much hurry to leave, ZERO-KUN?" Zero felt like hitting a pureblood when Kaname uttered those words. Kaname was really testing his limit. He didn't know what was wrong with the pureblood earlier but Zero guessed that Kaname was back to his old annoying self now.

"Ah, KANAME, right? I really have to do that now because I'd be too sleepy later. I'm not someone who doesn't sleep at night. And I'll have so many things to do tomorrow." Zero answered. Both Cross and Yuuki looked at each other and the girl silently asked her guardian about the two males' relationship. Cross smiled and simply shrugged. The two males obviously knew one another, and their relationship wasn't that good.

"Zero-kun, I told you, you should call the Night Class members senpai." Cross sighed as he tried to interfere in the conversation. Zero snorted and Kaname suddenly looked so smug and satisfied that the hunter was lightly scolded on his account.

"Kaname-senpai, stop teasing him!" Yuuki feigned a pout and Kaname chuckled. Zero had never seen the pureblood like that, so alive and happy. To have a family was a really wonderful thing… He couldn't bear to see anymore of that sibling relationship. It was reminding him of something he had lost a long time ago. Something he would never be able to have no matter how hard he tried to dream of it… He immediately turned around and left the kitchen without uttering another word. He ascended the stairs and entered his room quietly. As usual, his hand unconsciously locked the doorknob before he let go.

"Yuuki, who's that Yoru guy?" Kaname asked Yuuki casually, smiling like he usually did when he was on edge.

"Ah, he's a classmate. He said something hurtful to Zero-kun earlier so I had to apologize to Zero in his place. I was the one who invited Zero to hang out with us after all." Yuuki explained as he looked at Kaname. "Why do you ask?"

"Nothing." Kaname smiled gently when Yuuki looked at him innocently. "Are they close, Kiryuu and that guy?"

"Not really…" Yuuki looked at Kaname more keenly. "Why are you asking, nii-sama? Your face tells me it's not a mere question out of curiosity."

"It's just curiosity." Kaname laughed softly. "I just didn't think that that obnoxious and snobby hunter has a friend." Yuuki pouted but didn't ask anymore. She knew Kaname was lying to her, but if he didn't want to tell her, then she wouldn't pry anymore. She leaned her head on Kaname's shoulder and Kaname put his arms around her.

Actually, it was because a guy Kaname didn't know was mentioned that he immediately glared at Zero earlier. He knew he was being weird, getting annoyed because Zero knew someone in the school which he didn't know of. Maybe it was because he was too used to seeing Zero alone or with Yuuki only. Yes, that was it…




Ren-sama's Note:

This is all for today, people! Thank you for reading, everyone! ˆoˆ