Hello, final chapter. Hello. *runs for tissues*
Summary: When little Kyouya was five years old, he accomplished the herbivorous thing called "getting lost". However, when snow falls on Namimori, he does not die. A sakura fairy kept him safe. And as he grew up, he realized that there was only a one in seven billion chance that he could stay by Tsunayoshi's side.
Notes: So very partially AU. This is more like child!18 x TYL!27
Children Can See You Mr. Supernatural
"Yare, yare. It's winter again, huh?" a tall figure sighed, looking at the sky that was showering snowflakes all over Namimori. The tree he was leaning against quivered, as if sharing his sentiments about the change in season.
The brunet closed his else, trying to sense if any of his wards were damaged by frost yet. Winter was a busy time for him, a 72-year-old sakura guardian. Technically, he was a sprite, but Sawada Tsunayoshi liked the sound of "guardian" better. Sprites were diminutive supernaturals that didn't have much Flame power and took care of small plants and animals. Fairies were bigger and had bigger duties along with their size. But he was a supernatural the size of human adult, and the caretaker of all the sakura trees in Namimori and the surrounding 20 kilometers.
You would get a flaming fist to the chest if you dared call him a sprite.
He spread his senses further, drawing back the moment he felt the cold, clammy sensation of frost slowly killing the roots of one of his wards. Tsuna, as he liked to go by, sighed. Of all trees, it had to be one in the business area. He hated that place. It stank of humans that didn't give two yen about nature and his trees.
But his duty was his duty, and he was not going to let a tree die with him around.
Tsuna leapt from his previous standing position, dashing off into the cold snow, stepping lightly as so to not sink down. The suit-jacket outfit he wore ever since he had been promoted staved off the cold easily, so the supernatural was completely safe. Furthermore, the clothing didn't make him stand out amongst the humans, so he would be able to travel through the city unmolested. He shuddered at the memories of when he had been a fairy and had been stuck in gossamer silk garbs that had looked like a freaking dress. During those days, he had barely dared venturing into the city without at least seven layers of disillusionment spells on him to get the creepy people away from even touching him.
This was why he was now a guardian, not a sprite or fairy.
The seemingly 25-year-old "man" ran off towards the business district of Namimori, not realizing that "following his duty" was going to get him a lot more than another promotion.
The boy sneezed, curling up under his jacket in order to keep warm. The tree in which he was hiding in its branches shivered, the wood drawing back a bit as if to try to warm him, comfort him. But he was only imagining things.
How he, Hibari Kyouya, had managed the herbivorous thing called "getting lost" was infuriating to him. Not to mention that the 5-year-old boy could tell that he was already getting ill due to the penetrating cold.
He didn't know where he was for the life of him.
Hibari knew he was somewhere in the bad part of the business district, the part full of herbivores that he truly badly wished to bite to death for illegal activities. But he had yet to build a reputation and strengthen this weak, herbivorous body of his in order to do so.
Somehow, he had fallen off the rooftops whilst he was exercising during the night, and had managed to find himself in front of a bar. Someone had shouted at him, and the child had run away as fast as he could.
But now he was lost and didn't know where he was except that he was in the business part of Namimori..
And to add insult to injury, he had managed to become ill, of all things.
Off to his right, he could hear bawdy herbivores doing certain things and yelling loudly. He could sense the smell of a drunkard's alcohol-soaked breath, the smell of a person burning a substance he had heard was crystal meth. He did not sense anyone, though, anyone that would help him.
... not that he, a carnivore, would need help.
The snow on the street crunched, and all of a sudden, someone was there, looking up at the tree he was in. "Darn it. This isn't good," the person muttered, and Hibari watched, transfixed as the man stretched forth a hand, fingertips barely brushing the wood, and intoned a single, barely audible word.
A small, flickering flame sprang forth from the man's hand, travelling to what the boy belatedly realized was a sakura tree. The orange fire seemed to enter the tree, fading into the bark before the wood flashed brightly, a searing orange that matched the color of the fire. The hue seemed to run up and down the tree, invigorating it. Frost melted off the roots, and Hibari, in direct contact with the wood, gasped at the feeling of warmth, of safety, of protection...
Of all the things he had never received, always fought for.
Tsuna's ears picked up the sound of a sharp intake of breath. A human reflexive action - probably from someone that had seen him. The guardian looked around sharply. All the human around him were above the age of eighteen, none of them had reacted to his presence at all. Who had seen him?
He looked at the tree itself, eyes going up until they settled on - oh. Oh.
A child had seen him.
The boy was staring at him in shock, mouth partially open. "Who are you?" he asked curiously.
Guardian-sama, Guardian-sama, this child will freeze to death if he remains here any longer. The tree he had just healed sang out to him. Tsuna nodded imperceptibly, and then stepped up to perch on a large root that jutted from the ground.
"Are you okay?" he asked with concern, holding his hands up. "Get down here; you'll get hypothermia if you stay up there any longer."
The child backed away from him, looking at his fingers cautiously. "F-Fire. Your hands."
Tsuna grimaced to himself. So this was the child that had seen him. "Don't worry, that flame will not hurt you. Nor will I. Hurry, come here."
The boy looked around carefully, and still shivering, jumped from where he had been curled in fetal position amidst the tree branches. The supernatural caught the boy easily, immediately holding him closely to warm up the kid.
Tsuna marveled at the feel of skin contact before casting a disillusionment spell on the boy; he didn't want anyone to see anything weird about an invisible person carrying a child which... if he had not been a gentleman, he would have cursed. The already pale-skinned child had fainted in his arms.
The guardian fell low to the ground, leaping up into the sky as brilliant orange Flame-wings flared from his back, appearing to normal humans as a mere shooting star as he flew the child to his shrine.
When Hibari opened his eyes, he was in an unfamiliar room with virtually no furnishings, lying in a futon with an unknown arm holding him. Before he could bite the stranger to death, a kind voice questioned, "Are you feeling okay, kid?"
Hibari rolled away from the man as quickly as possible, standing defensively as the unknown herbivore yawned, stretching his back. "You... that flame- where am I?"
"Geez, you're polite, aren't you?" the herbivore laughed, standing up. He wore a black and orange patterned yukata, and to his dismay, Hibari realized that he was in a black yukata. "Don't freak out, child. I don't know where you live, so I brought you here. I had to change your clothes because they were wet with the melted snow. Anyway, since you're apparently completely healthy, you should probably go home now."
The black-haired boy stared at him dubiously. "Who are you? What was that fire yesterday?"
"What is your name?" Tsuna asked patiently, ignoring the questions. He could ask his trees about the boy's home and tell him how to get there.
"Answer my questions first, herbivore," Hibari growled.
The guardian smiled at the boy. "Well, since you'll forget about me in a couple of years, I guess I can tell you. My name is Sawada Tsunayoshi, and I'm a supernatural being. I guard all of the sakura trees in Namimori and in a 25-kilometer radius. And what's your name, little one?"
Tsuna wasn't surprised at all when the boy looked at him weirdly. "That can't be true," the child deadpanned.
He spread his arms in a shrug. "It is the truth, though. I have no reason to lie." The boy seemed to ponder on this for a while. "So, your name?"
"... Hibari Kyouya. And I still don't believe you."
Tsuna closed his eyes momentarily, searching through the records of his trees for a child of the same name.
The sakura whispered to him of a boy with black hair, a boy that had a martial artist as a father and was skilled with the tonfa. Hibari, the boy that dreamed of protecting all of Namimori and keeping the discipline with an iron fist. The boy - ah, there! "Hm, do you know how to get back home, Hibari-kun?" the supernatural inquired, opening his eyes again.
The reaction was immediate. "Don't call me like that, herbivore," he snapped.
"Mmm, I'll take it that you don't know how to get home, then. So you were lost yesterday?"
Tsuna regarded him curiously, folding his arms together. Perhaps this child had a fondness for ecology, with referring to him as "herbivore". Not to mention a sizeable ego with that attitude of his. "I'm trying to help you, Hibari."
"I don't need anyone's help," he stated stubbornly, heading for the door.
"One moment there, kid. You're in my shrine in the middle of Namimori Forest. Do you really believe that you can make your way home from here?" the brunet voiced his thoughts incredulously. "And you couldn't find your way home from the Business District, at that. Also, be kind to your helpers, Hibari. You could have died of hypothermia last night," he chided.
The mortal looked up at him, stubbornness turning into resignation to helplessness to unveiled, childish curiousity. "... Thank you. Are you actually a sakura fairy?"
A vein popped on the supernatural's forehead. "I prefer guardian or supernatural, thank you very much. Fairies are little supernaturals that are stuck in white silk clothes and can be seen by mortals. I. Am. Not. A. Fairy."
Hibari blinked. "Ah. Do you know how to get me home them, Supernatural-san?"
"And here I thought you'd never ask, egotistic boy." Tsuna ran his hands through his hair. "Change into your clothes- they're out back laying on some rocks - and then I'll meet you out front."
Hibari's mind raced as he did the simple task, observing his surroundings. He had been in a one-room shrine that was obviously for a Shinto nature deity. There hadn't been anything other than the futon and a... watering can in the room, so "Sawada Tsunayoshi" didn't seem to need any sustenance.
But the thing that made him believe that this person wasn't a person wasn't that mysterious flame last night. It was something else. Like the way the sakura trees around the shrine were blossoming still, even before their season. How they seemed to bend down to greet him. And how those brown eyes were full of wisdom and knowledge and care.
If Sawada was actually human, the carnivore swore he would go hit himself for falling for such a lie.
"Come along, Hibari-kun," Sawada called. "Leave the yukata on the rocks."
As he ran towards where the sakura guardian stood, Hibari watched with fascination as the black yukata he had been wearing slowly turned into hundreds of small, pink sakura petals.
The two walked down a small, beaten-down path in the forest, Hibari looking up at the other with interest. "What do you have to do as a sakura guardian? Do you age like humans? What was that flame yesterday? Can normal herbivores see you?" he questioned rapidly. Tsuna laughed at the innocent curiousity. He didn't mind answering the questions; it was nice to talk to someone every once in a while, even if that someone was a child.
"All I have to do really is make sure the trees don't get ill or die unnaturally or get cut down be humans. I have to make sure that seedlings are planted in the correct places, and when winter sets in, make sure the frost doesn't damage any of them. The fire you saw yesterday is something special called a Dying Will Flame," Tsuna answered easily.
"Dying Will Flame?"
"Mmhmm. All creatures have it, but only supernaturals can actually use it. It's a person's resolve to do something manifested as a form of energy." Tsuna had to refrain from laughing as the child which would seem frightening to other children cocked his head in confusion. "Basically, when we want to do something with our Dying Will, the flame appears." That was an overly simplified explanation, but he wasn't going to go into the seven types and the atributtes for a kid that wouldn't understand half of the terms.
"Can I use the Flames?" Hibari asked eagerly.
"I'm not too sure about that, boy. Humans who can access their Flames are very rare." Tsunayoshi could have sworn Hibari pouted. "But maybe you can someday."
The boy blinked up at him. "How do you know that?"
"Well, you can see and touch me, can't you? Usually, children, when they are younger than 5 can see me at least. After their fifth birthday, they are blind to me. Ones that can see me when they are older usually stop at ten. The very few that can come in contact with me afterwards..." Hibari observed a shadow of sadness go across his expression. "They can't see me the moment they turn twenty. And to top it off, they forget." Tsuna laughed nervously. "It's kind of rare to find someone that can see me. Being a supernatural can be lonely when there aren't very many other supernaturals around."
Something tugged at the boy's heart. Impulsively, he blurted, "What if they can see you after they turn twenty?" Now they were on the edge of the suburbs, and Hibari began recognizing familiar places.
The guardian smiled softly. "That... There is only one human in the entire world that will be able to do that. That human is the one that Kami-sama has destined me to be with. But for all I know, I'm destined to be with either another supernatural or no one at all." He closed his eyes.
"Now, I believe this is goodbye, Hibari Kyouya."
The man disappeared in a gust of sakura blossoms, and Hibari found himself standing on his own doorstep, no mysterious sakura fairy in sight.
"Kyouya? Is that you? Father and mother were worried!" the boy's older sister, I-Pin, cried as she opened the door.
Hibari didn't answer, head filled with the image of the final, melancholic expression of the fairy.
May 4th, the night before his tenth birthday, Hibari informed Mammon-okaa-san and Fong-otou-san that he would be taking a quick patrol of Namimori. His parents, knowing full well that their son was a formidable enemy to any normal troublemaker considering his skill with the tonfa, simply nodded and told him to be back before midnight.
The black-haired boy ran as fast as he could when he was out of sight of his house. His shoes pounded on the dirt of a beaten oath that he remembered, to the place where the lonely supernatural that had helped him all those years ago slept at night. He still remembered that person, that expression, and how the sakura guardian spoke. He remembered that fire, that conversation, the sakura trees that had responded to their keeper.
Hibari didn't want to forget.
He wanted to see that person again. See him before he couldn't see him ever again.
Panting hard, Hibari reached the clearing with the shrine. The sakura was in full bloom, and the moon was full behind the small building. Tentatively, he stepped towards the shrine, raising up a hand to knock on the sliding door. But before he could knock, a hand opened the door, and the supernatural looked down, wearing a glimmering orange and black yukata. "Well, hello Hibari-kun. Never expected to see you again."
"I don't want to forget, herbivore," the still-child blurted. "I... I don't want to forget."
Tsuna simply smiled down at the boy nostalgically. "I have heard those words many times, Hibari Kyouya. I can do nothing about the forgetting, though. Nothing." A hand rested on top of the boy's head, ruffling his hair.
The mortal boy stared up at the supernatural. "Are you strong?"
Startled by the sudden question, Tsuna blinked several times. "I believe so yes, why?" he answered in puzzlement.
The supernatural stepped to the side, dodging the tonfa that had been punched towards him. Tsuna smiled helplessly, conjuring a pair of normal gloves to spar with the child. He had a feeling that this was Hibari's way of wanting to say goodbye.
"Oh, heavens. What is this?" Tsunayoshi grit his teeth and huffed in indignation. Apparently at the middle school, a large fight had occurred and one of his trees had gotten half it's branches burnt off when a lighter set it afire. The sakura guardian changed from his yukata to his classic suit with a snap of his fingers and began sprinting away from his shrine to Namimori-chuugaku.
The school came in sight shortly, and the sounds there indicated that fighting was still happening. Tsuna sighed, simply walking in anyway. It wasn't like anyone there could see him. For a moment, he considered the dark-haired boy from six years ago, but shook his head. It wasn't good to hope for such high things and be disappointed continually.
Turning a corner, he saw the damaged tree. Righteous fury welled up in him. How dare humans do such a foolish thing, he thought scathingly, walking up to the poor sakura and holding his hand out. He closed his eyes to concentrate on his Flame, and then he heard a somewhat familiar voice. "For damaging that sakura tree, all of you will be bitten to death more," someone growled. There were sounds of screaming and pleas for mercy, but the probably one-sided beatdown didn't stop. Tsuna smiled to himself. At least this time around, idiotic humans were getting punishment.
"Be healed, pretty one," he murmured, Flame flickering up onto his fingertips as he brushed the wood softly, unaware of the prefect that had just completed his disciplining and was staring at him with uncharacteristically wide eyes. A globe of Sky Flames entered the tree, energy running up and down it as it regrew its lost branches and seemed to upright itself from its former sad droop. He smiled at the sakura, stroking the bark.
"Tsunayoshi?" the voice that had said it would bite the troublemakers to death asked. The guardian whirled around in shock, utter surprise going across his mind as he saw that boy that had asked him for a fight - the child from ten years ago. But he wasn't a child anymore...
"You can see me?" Tsuna uttered. "You- you remember me?"
His only reply was the teen's abrupt punch. "Fight me, Sawada Tsunayoshi," the 16-year-old Hibari demanded in a feral voice, smiling dangerously.
The sakura guardian had never been so happy to fight before. He could see, touch, and hear him! He remembered.
If anyone had eyes that could see the supernaturals, after that short sparring session they would have seen a grown man tackling a teenage male and crying on his shoulder with relief.
"So how are you these days, Kyouya?" Tsuna asked mildly, looking down at the prefect. The teen cracked an eye open from where he had been napping under one of the sakura trees near his shrine, sitting up when the man came over with a tray of tea.
"I'm fine," he muttered, nodding his head politely before drinking the tea.
"Why didn't you visit when you realized you remembered?" Tsuna asked. It had been a month after he had found out that Hibari remembered, and he had never gotten around to asking this question that had been nagging at him.
He was silent for a moment. "I-I couldn't believe it at first," Hibari stated simply. "I couldn't believe that I still had those memories of you. So I dismissed it as a fluke, that I wouldn't remember after my birthday passed. And then when I woke up the next day and remembered, I still dismissed it. Eventually it came to me not caring... I apologize."
Tsuna smiled down benignly at him. "It's fine," he reassured. "I'm glad that you still remembered me."
"... Can you come to my school when you can?" Hibari requested under his breath, reminding Tsuna of the child he had been so many years ago. The brunet smiled, reaching down to pat his head.
"Of course, Kyouya."
It was at this point in time which Tsuna still saw the teen as the child from so many years ago.
And yet, it was seeing the supernatural in the loose patterned yukata that Hibari realized that somehow, the way he remembered and saw the guardian had changed.
"So today's your graduation? You're eighteen, right?" The guardian whispered, leaning down to talk in the ear of the Head of Namimori High School's Disciplinary Committee. Hibari suddenly froze, pen stopping mid-signature. Tsuna laughed, reaching down to pat Hibari's hair. "Eighteen, ne? You grew up so fast," he commented wistfully.
"Yes, today is my graduation," Hibari confirmed, relaxing and going back to writing.
"Man... soon you'll be twenty and you will be gone," Tsuna murmured, more to himself than anything. "I'll miss you."
The prefect went stiff again, the pen in his hand breaking with the sudden force that he had gripped it. Ink ran down his fingers, the pieces of metal flying everywhere. "Sorry," he apologized abruptly, standing up to wash his hands.
The supernatural tilted his head to the side curiously, following him into the restroom. "Why are you so antsy today, Kyoya?" he questioned, leaning against the restroom door. He laughed, "Graduation worries? No idea what you have to do in the future?"
"No, I intend on joining the police force when I graduate from Namimori University," he replied stiffly.
Tsuna leaned his chin on his shoulder. "Geez! You're taller than me now. And if so, then what's wrong?" He didn't notice how Hibari seemed to freeze up for the third time as he whispered in his ear.
In Hibari's mind, something snapped. He twisted around, and Tsuna suddenly found himself being pinned to the wall, the teen glowering darkly above him. He gasped in surprise, and a hand yanked on his collar, popping off some buttons and revealing his collarbone, which Kyouya suddenly bent his head and bit down on on. Hard.
He found himself helpless, unable to summon enough will to push off the mortal. "Wh-what are you doing, Ky- augh!" Tsuna cried out as Hibari began sucking on his flesh, soothing the wound which he had just inflicted on the other. The sensation was utterly foreign to him.
When Hibari drew back, Tsuna attempted to push him off, but then the pinned-against-a-wall situation turned into a pinned-to-the-floor-with-Kyouya-on-top-of-him situation. "Tsunayoshi," the teen growled, face inches away from his, "Do you still see me as a child?" When the sakura fairy didn't reply, too much in shock to think coherently, Hibari growled in his throat, closing the gap between their lips instead.
Tsuna's mind was reeling, stunned by his friend's sudden reactions. "What do you mean? he gasped.
Hibari drew back, eyes filled with something akin to frustration. "I am a man now, Tsunayoshi. I- I..."
I love you. I have loved you.
Something clicked in the supernatural's mind. He sighed, propping himself up on his elbows, and held onto the teen's shoulder. "Ah."
So... you love me.
"I don't like the thought that out there, there is only one herbivore past the age of twenty, probably not even deserving of you, that can see you. And is destined to be with you," he spat. Brown eyes looked grey ones, and Tsuna's hand trailed up to Hibari's cheek, stroking the pale skin.
"I'm sorry for treating you like a child, Kyouya," Tsuna murmured, "But are you sure that-"
Are you really sure you are in love with me?
I do. I do not want you to be anyone else's.
The two of them stood up silently. Sometimes, silence could communicate so much more than words.
A year later, May 4th.
"Good morning, Kyouya." Hibari opened his eyes to look at the beautiful creature that laid next to him in his futon, reaching to hook Tsuna's waist and pull him closer. "It's May 4th already..." the guardian said sadly, gripping onto Hibari's hand.
The black-haired nineteen-year-old simply held him closer, nuzzling into his boyfriend/mate/lover's neck. "Tomorrow, I turn 20." Hibari dared to utter the frightening truth.
There was only a one in more than seven billion chance that when he woke up tomorrow, he would remember and be able to sense the supernatural.
1/x7,000,000,000 was the definition of no chance.
"Kyouya, I love you." Tsunayoshi turned around to smile up at him. "I hope that you can... move on when you... forget."
"You will always be mine," the younger stated matter-of-factly. "Even if I forget you... I doubt you will forget me. As long as one of us remembers..."
The pair fell silent, enjoying what was probably their last day together, Tsuna with a breaking heart and Kyouya with a heart that was now impervious to love from any other person.
"Happy birthday, since I won't be able to say it to you tomorrow."
Hibari was woken up rudely when his older sister whacked him on the head with her textbook. "Happy birthday, otouto," I-Pin greeted cheerfully. "How's it feel to be a real adult now?"
The man got out of his bed, glaring at his sister, who was sadly impervious to his death glare. "Why did you have to wake me up like that-" he froze mid-sentence.
In his memory, a cheerful brunet complained, "Kyouya, why did you have to wake me up like that?"
He was twenty years old.
He was that one person that could be with Tsunayoshi.
"Tell otou-san and okaa-san that I'll be back at noon!" he commanded, rapidly changing before vaulting out his window. "I need to go somewhere."
A breeze blew around the room, and I-Pin was left blinking in shock. "Did he just..."
"He's acting like he's in love! The world is going to end!"
Tsuna smiled to himself sadly, sitting on the rocks that Hibari and he had often napped on together. "I wonder what he's going to do for his birthday today...?" he questioned to himself, then shook his head. "Tsuna. Stop it. He's twenty now..."
We can't be together anymo-
Warm arms wrapped around his body, and a chin rested on his head. "Tsunayoshi. It's me. I remember."
Tsuna cried, tears welling up and flowing from his eyes. "I love you, Kyouya."
"Hn. I will never leave you again."
... This plotbunny turned into a monster.
I really hope you all enjoyed this one! This is my last chapter for Of Skylarks and Sakura Sprites, as 1827 month ends tomorrow. However, I'll be posting 3 more oneshots for this AU separately. It was a fun ride, mates!
Please review? I find it sad that I have many, many followers, but only seven reviews every chapter.
Note: Hibari, since he is bonded to a supernatural, will not age, but only die when Tsuna dies. So they have a lifetime together, ne? *wipes tears away*
Comment and tell me what you liked about this story the best!
Until next time- Exile