Hey there~

I know I've already posted a fic for Gil's birthday, but inspiration struck me like lightning at like, the eleventh hour of the 5th. It wouldn't leave me alone until I got it down on paper, and eventually I decided to transform it into a proper story. It may be two days late, but better late than never :) So, here it is; my second birthday fic for Gil! (I know it's belated, but this time it actually has something to do with his birthday XD)

As it is a romance fic, the pairing is Gil/Oz with a tiny bit of Oz/Gil. This story was inspired by the weather that I've experienced for the past few days, and most of the weather-related description in here is from what I've seen/felt. Also, just a slight warning but some of you might hate me since most of the story may seem quite gloomy. But don't worry, I made sure to put in an ending which you guys should (hopefully!) like :D Finally, I proofread this fic about three times (which took up most of the day) but please do forgive me if I missed out spelling or grammar mistakes. If you spot any then do let me know so that I can correct it.

Anyways, enough with the rambling and on with the story!

Disclaimer: I do not own Pandora Hearts. It belongs to Jun Mochizuki.

'4:13 am'

Gilbert grumbled incoherent curses while sitting up when he saw the time. He had been having a somewhat peaceful, dreamless sleep until he was rudely awoken from his slumber by the offensively irritating sound of his window creaking due to the strong wind. After some time, he fell back while simultaneously pulling the blanket over his head, but after several minutes it was obvious that any attempt at going back to sleep would be futile, since the weather seemed hell-bent on keeping him awake.

For the past three days or so, the weather had taken a turn for the worst. The sky was as dark as night during the day; fat grey clouds clotting together, thus blocking out the sun's rays. The winds blew mercilessly for most of the nights, causing shutters to slam, open doors to creak and windows to groan under its sheer force. Trees would bend back at forty-five degree angles while the branches whipped around wildly, and not a single soul dared venture outside unless absolutely necessary since sometimes, the heavy tension that kept the rain clouds at bay would break and a thunderstorm would erupt out of the blue.

With that said, Gilbert must've been soulless as well as mad for he was currently getting dressed in his white, long-sleeve silk shirt, long black coat and boots, preparing to go out for a walk.

Since the weather had been bad, everyone had been cooped up in the mansion for three whole days and with no missions to give a valid excuse for going out, Gilbert had started feeling suffocated by the third night. He was so used to going out for one reason or another, whatever the weather, but was forced to stay indoors under Oz's insistence. He wouldn't even let Gilbert go out to balcony to smoke, complaining that Gil could get sick. Now, Gilbert was touched by Oz's concern, but his addiction to tobacco tampered with his train of logical thought, telling him that smoking was more important (and that it was best done outdoors where his Master wouldn't inhale the smoke that could harm his little lungs).

So, since Gilbert couldn't go back to sleep anyway, now was the perfect chance to relieve some stress while the other residents of the mansion were fast asleep.

"What perfect weather to spend one's birthday; It woke me up hours before dawn and it's still getting worse."

Of course, Gilbert was only being sarcastic, nor was he the type to fuss over birthdays. He had never really cared about them in the first place, and it had been that way ever since he was young.

That is, until Oz entered his life.

Oz was the very first person to concern himself with Gilbert's birthday, while little Ada followed right after. With a fond smile, Gilbert remembered that one day when both the Vessalius siblings had approached him, claiming that since Gil had no memory which meant that he couldn't remember his birthday either, they would celebrate it on the anniversary of their meeting. Gilbert had tried to argue, saying that he had already picked a day, but he was promptly told to shut up by Oz. Gilbert took no mind to it however, since he had known very well that Oz was simply being his usual, cheerful and caring self.

Oz had kept to his word, and every year the siblings, under Oz's planning and supervision, would successfully surprise Gil with a wonderful party that Gilbert was absolutely convinced he didn't deserve. Uncle Oscar and even Mrs. Kate would also participate without fail, and deep down Gilbert felt truly happy. During those days, Gilbert could truly feel thankful for being alive and having spent another year with his wonderful Master as well as the others. It was thanks to Oz that his life; his very existence, had any meaning to it.

That all changed when Oz was dragged into the Abyss.

Without Oz by his side, Gilbert simply didn't have the mood, reason, or even the right to celebrate his birthday. It had been that way for ten years, during which the habit and the joy of that day slowly died. But Oz was back now. His reason to live, his reason to celebrate, his reason to be thankful for the life he was living, was back, giving Gilbert a reason to value this day again.

A sudden pang of sadness welled within Gilbert, and for a fleeting moment he wished he could go back to his younger self, back when their lives were carefree and back when Oz could truly be happy. That was the time when Oz would always be with Gilbert, caring for and looking after the younger boy in his own special way. Now, Gilbert was a grown-up man, so no matter how much he wished for it, for Oz to constantly be by his side and spend the day with him would be a little immature. He would never say it out loud, but spending quality time with Oz, seeing his excited smile and just being the focus of Oz's attention especially when they celebrated Gils once-meaningless day of birth was the best feeling ever; one which Gilbert still yearned for after ten long years.

With a soft sigh, Gilbert finished getting dressed and quietly left his room, making his way down a corridor which was both a shortcut to the ground floor and didn't pass by most of the other residents' bedrooms, including Oz's.

It was all wishful thinking, he concluded. With all the pandemonium they had faced after Oz's return, the young Vessalius heir was probably much too stressed to even remember this day, so spending time with him was most likely out of the question and therefore, he had dispelled any fanciful hopes much earlier on.

Gilbert was pulled out of his vague thoughts the second he stepped foot outside the mansion. Almost immediately, Gilbert reached for his cigarettes, lit one, and inhaled deeply the second it was between his lips. The satisfaction he felt was stronger than usual, since it had been three whole days since he smoked. Eight times he tried, but Gilbert could just never get over the intense feeling of breathing from the diaphragm, as well as the addictive tobacco.

Gilbert settled into a slow pace, strolling through the vast gardens while staying near the shadows, lest someone were to wake up in the middle of the night and see the light from his cigarette (Oz would definitely throw a childish fit if he had known Gilbert was up and out at this hour). It was colder than he had anticipated, but in all honesty the weather wasn't as bad as it seemed from within the mansion. The strong, cold February breeze that gently tugged against his skin, making his long coat billow back as well as push his long raven bangs back was actually quite refreshing (though he was thankful for leaving behind his precious hat, or it would've been miles away by now), the way everything around him was shrouded in a cloak of darkness soothed his tired eyes, bringing peace to his nerves and the way the wind sometimes wailed like a banshee served as a stark reminder of the fearsome power of nature.

With a crooked half-smile, Gilbert couldn't help but think how different he was now. Despite Oz's insistence, they both knew that Gilbert had in fact changed, but only in the sense that he now had new personality traits. Only a few of the original ones had actually changed, like, for example, had he been the young boy he was before Oz's disappearance then no way in hell would he dare venture out in such fierce weather (not unless it was the weather or a cat, in which case, he would definitely pick the former), and yet here he was ten years later, enjoying it.

Gilbert wasn't sure for how long he walked. The entire time he had been caught up with smoking as much as he possibly could without murdering his lungs right there and then. While he smoked, his mind drifted off once more, occupying his head with random thoughts and memories, but gone were all thoughts of birthdays. There was no point in pondering over something which had no more reason to be thought over.

Eventually the wind became colder and the breeze, faster. There was something else mixed with the howling of the wind, something that Gilbert identified as a distant rumbling. As soon as he thought it, light raindrops started falling from the sky and Gilbert made for a run for it, discarding his third-and-a-half cigarette on the way. Just as he had predicted, it got heavier by the minute and by the time reached safety beyond the mansion doors, it had begun pouring like there was no tomorrow.

Thankfully, Gilbert had made it inside just in time so his clothes, apart from the several drops of water that had landed on his coat while he ran through the drizzle, were dry. Before shutting the doors completely, he watched as millions of fat water droplets cascaded down to the earth, veiling the previously black scenery in a distorted curtain of translucent grey.

After a while, Gilbert slowly made his way back to his room. This time he opted to take the regular, longer route with the intention of checking up on Oz on the way. It was something that he always did whenever he randomly woke up in the middle of the night (Gilbert had a strong hunch that it was Oz's need for his servant in his sleep reaching out to him through some otherworldly link which he would never understand, that woke him on nights unlike this one). Oz would always be sound asleep whenever Gilbert checked up on him, but still, it was a habit that he had no intention of giving up anytime soon, and not just for safety reasons.

As the raven-haired man strode down the long corridor heading to the bedrooms, he witnessed several loud claps of thunder that illuminated his path, casting window-shaped shadows on the carpeted floor and walls. Tonight's thunderstorm, compared to the one from two days ago, was rather intense. He then hoped from the bottom of his heart that the weather improved quickly, since Gilbert knew that Oz was much fonder of warm sunshine and gentle breezes rather than cold, gloomy skies and harsh winds.

Gilbert had just turned a corner and approached Oz's bedroom door when he noticed it was slightly ajar. This was in his benefit, since he was always afraid that the light creaking of the door might accidentally rouse his Master from his slumber. Oz's room was just as dark as it was outside; the only source of light came from the occasional flash of lightning, otherwise Gilbert could barely make out the objects in his path. Judging by the lack of any other sounds or movement, Oz must've been asleep as usual. But Gilbert was in for a surprise however, when he ventured further in the room until he came within view of his Master's bed where Oz sat upright and definitely awake.

Despite the lack of sufficient lighting in the room, both their eyes met and Gilbert could just make out a breathless gasp of "Gil" from Oz, as if the breath had been knocked out of him. As soon as his name left Oz's lips, a particularly loud and bright bolt of thunder split the sky into two, lighting up the room brighter than daylight ever could and that's when Gilbert saw it; the startled expression on Oz's face. The boy was definitely pale, this much Gilbert could tell, his eyes were wide while his eyebrows were tilted upwards, almost like he was worried, and his mouth was set it a tight line as if he were trying hold back something.

To Gilbert, it seemed like Oz had just seen a ghost.

But then again, Oz's surprise was probably justified, since it wasn't every night where a tall, dark ominous figure appeared in your bedroom at some ungodly hour during a thunderstorm.

Or rather, it never happened.

But there was something about Oz's lingering anxious gaze that made Gilbert realise that perhaps his sudden appearance wasn't the only thing bothering his young Master.

"Oz? Is something the matter?"

The sound of Gilbert's gentle voice must've snapped Oz out of whatever daze he was in, for during the next moment, he blinked. When he reopened his eyes, most of the shock had vanished from his expression but Gilbert knew better; there were still traces of anxiety etched into that beautiful, young face.

"N-nothing really," he answered after a brief period of silence. "It's just that all this noise woke me up."

Oz stuttered. Oz never stutters. Not unless...

"Are you absolutely sure nothing's wrong, Oz?"

There was something about Gilbert's voice that made Oz pause to think about his answer rather than just flat-out deny his servant like he originally had planned. It was probably how calm and soothing his voice was that managed to coax out a response from Oz, who eventually forced out a grin and said, "W-well, it's just been a while since I've seen such a fierce thunderstorm. I guess I'm just not used to it, since I've been having a little trouble with going back to sleep..."

There was another sudden clap of thunder, during which Gilbert heard Oz suck in a sharp intake of air. Once again, he had the same expression from a few minutes ago, only this time it was a little less shocked but a little more disturbed. It was then when Gilbert realised it.

Oz was scared.

It was a very rare emotion displayed by the blond teen, and even now it was simply uneasiness rather than actual fear itself. But anyone would be shaken up by this weather; Gilbert himself had felt a little uncomfortable going through that long, gloomy hallway on the way to Oz's bedroom. The fact that the brilliant light from the lightning made the halls glow an eerie white didn't help either.

"Would you like me to stay for a while?" offered Gilbert. Deep down he really hoped that Oz would say yes despite feeling a little tired again, because there was nothing better to him than spending time with his beloved Master. His hopes were not dashed.

"If you don't mind..." was Oz's soft answer.

At that moment, Gilbert was even more confident than ever that his occasional night time routine was not in vain, and that perhaps he and Oz really did share some otherworldly conscience bond. But naturally, he kept these thoughts to himself. Instead, he nodded once, before shedding off his coat and draping it across the nearby armchair before making his way to Oz's side and sitting on the edge of the bed.

Despite the look fear he was sporting not too long ago, Oz briefly pouted in dissatisfaction before smiling broadly and patting the area next to him. Gilbert looked at him as if asking 'are you sure?', and Oz simply nodded. So, Gilbert kicked off his boots, crawled onto the bed across Oz's outstretched legs until he reached the boy's other side, after which Oz began to shuffle forward. Gilbert immediately understood what he was expected to do, and with the faintest of blushes, he moved to sit behind Oz, leaning back against the headboard while spreading his legs apart and drawing them half-way up on either side of the blond-haired boy. Oz then leaned back onto Gilbert's chest, shuffling a bit to get more comfortable.

After much hesitance, Gilbert lifted his arms from his sides and slowly wrapped them around Oz's torso securely. Unbeknown to each other, both males had warm blushes blooming on their cheeks at this slightly intimate gesture. Oz then snuggled back into Gilbert's arms before resting his head against Gilbert's upper arm. Gilbert then rested his cheek on his Master's head and breathed in the unique scent of Oz's silky golden hair while Oz sighed in content. They both stayed like that for quite some time, during which Gilbert felt Oz relax fully into his arms. He couldn't help but smile at how beautifully Oz fit against the contours of his body, as if they were made for each other. Oz, on his part, wondered with amazement at how comfortable it was, being held by Gilbert like this. Never in his life had he felt so safe and warm and cosy than he did in Gilbert's arms.

"Hey, Gil?" murmured Oz, finally breaking the content silence. "How come you came to my room this late?" he asked, purely out of curiosity; not a hint of suspicion in his voice.

"I was checking up on you," answered Gil, as gently as Oz did.

"You woke up just to do that?"

"No. To be honest, I couldn't sleep either."

It was then Oz registered the fact that Gilbert had been wearing his black coat earlier.

"You went out, didn't you?" asked Oz with a faint smirk. He knew how worked-up Gil would get if he asked, which was exactly why he did. A flustered Gilbert was always Oz's favourite.

"I-I just wanted some fresh air!" exclaimed Gilbert, instantly feeling a sense of panic wash over him. Oz couldn't help but laugh softly when he felt Gilbert stiffen. Even after ten years, Gilbert was the same as ever.

"I guess it's alright. I'm starting to want to go outside too."

"Don't worry, Oz. I'm sure the weather will clear up soon."

"I hope so."

There was a long pause, which Oz broke once more when he began chuckling quietly.

"What?" asked Gilbert, as the corner of his lips tugged upwards in a slight smile.

Oz shook his head before saying, "I just remembered something."

"And what was that?"

"This situation. We've been in it before, remember? Only that time, I was the one comforting you."

It took Gilbert an entire minute before he remembered which incident Oz was referring to, since his mind had to go back an extra ten years in the past before matching the same time-frame as Oz.

"Ah, I remember now. That's right; our situations were reversed that time. It had only been a few months since I had become your servant. Then one night there was a thunderstorm like this one..." Gilbert trailed off, as the memory replayed itself in his mind.

"And that night I was the one who came to check up on you..." continued Oz, as he too became lost in thought. The thunderstorm that night hadn't been as bad as the one they were facing now, but both boys were young at that time; young and scared. Still, as Gilbert's Master, Oz convinced himself that it was his job to comfort his servant, and perhaps himself as well. So, Oz had dashed for Gilbert's room where the poor boy quivered beneath the blankets at the verge of tears. Oz had slipped into the bed beside Gilbert and held him close to sooth him, which led to both boys falling asleep in each others' arms some time later.

They lapsed into silence once more, during which Oz suddenly started to feel restless with emotion. Here they were, ten years later, and now Gilbert was literally the grown up comforting Oz. That led him to focus on the fact that he had been away from Gil's side for ten years. Knowing Gilbert, he probably didn't even acknowledge his own birthday even once during those ten years, most likely because he started thinking silly things like there was no point in celebrating the day he was born since his life was meaningless as he failed to protect Oz. This thought greatly pained Oz. For ten years, such an important day came and went by and Gilbert probably spent the day being miserable. Ten years worth of the most important day to Oz, all gone; never able to be redeemed no matter how much he wished for it.

And it was all because of Oz.

"Gil always cared for me, accepted me so readily, he was always there for me when I needed him, he constantly kept trying to save me for ten whole years, and protected me several times when I returned even if it meant putting his own life in danger..."

These were the things that Oz were thinking, but he was so lost in thought that he hadn't realised that he had just spoken aloud his train of thought, albeit quietly, but Gilbert was close enough to hear every single word with growing confusion. The rest of Oz's thoughts remained unspoken.

No one had ever made him feel so special, so wanted, and so loved except for Gilbert, for which Oz was truly grateful for because had it not been for Gilbert's presence in his life, Oz was certain that he would've gone insane from grief by now. And so Oz wanted nothing more but to show Gilbert just how much he valued the day of his birth by making the older male feel just the way he made Oz feel. It was something he should have done much sooner – ten years sooner – while he still had the chance. But now, he had a second chance which was a miracle considering where he managed to escape from.

The final thought was what probably made Oz do what he did next.

Oz swiftly yet smoothly turned around to face Gilbert and craned his neck up a bit, bringing his face closer to Gilbert's before whispering "Happy birthday, Gil" against the older male's lips, and then closed the gap. Gilbert's eyes went absolutely wide in shock and he sat there as still as a statue while Oz kissed him. It was a somewhat chaste kiss; nothing more than a firm press of the lips, but when Oz slowly moved back what seemed like ages later, Gilbert found himself breathless.

As soon as he pulled away, Oz felt a strange flittering sensation in his stomach and a sudden wave of panic hit him. He knew Gil cared for him deeply, much more than a servant and probably even a friend did, but what if Oz had been mistaken? What if Gilbert didn't feel the same way...? An even scarier thought followed, and Oz felt paranoia infiltrate his system. What if Oz had just broken the bond of trust and friendship between them? Would Gilbert leave him? As utterly selfish as it was, Oz would do anything in his power to stop Gilbert from doing so, for he was absolutely certain that he couldn't live without the older male. Gilbert was his anchor to reality; the only thing keeping him sane as he experienced the hell he easily could've ended with his own two hands known as his life. If he were to leave then that was a fate worse than what Oz could've inflicted upon himself.

Oz's only consolation was that at least Gil hopefully wouldn't hate him for what he had just done.

The silence stretched on for what seemed like forever. Gilbert wordlessly stared down at Oz; the look of shock still fresh on his face, while Oz averted his eyes but still faced the man who's first kiss he had surely just taken, and had given his own first kiss to (Oz had long ago consoled himself by establishing a fact that Alice was merely forming a contract with him, and that the connection of their lips that time did not count as a kiss).

Finally, Gilbert spoke. But what he said was so unexpected by Oz that the teen's paranoia simply diffused into thin air, only to be replaced by a sense of incredulousness towards his servant.

"O-Oz, you... You remembered...?

It took Oz all his self-restraint to resist the urge to facepalm. That's what Gilbert was shocked about? And-

"-What kind of question's that, Gil? Of course I remembered! How could I possibly forget such an important day?" Before Gilbert could respond, Oz boldly added, "Y-you mean the world to me, Gil... This day is even more important than my own birthday. There's no way I could ever forgot. How could you even think such a thing?" Oz wanted to say something more along the lines of 'You're more important to me than my own life. I love you; how on earth could I forget?' but his growing embarrassment altered his speech at the last moment. Oz didn't want to sound too cheesy.

And then, he was suddenly pulled forward in warm embrace by Gilbert, who held the boy flush against his own body while burying his face in Oz's soft hair. Oz immediately felt an uncharacteristic blush spread across his cheeks at the spontaneous act, but didn't even think about breaking free. He did, however, discreetly shift his legs to rest on either side of Gilbert's hips to get more comfortable, thus effectively half-straddling him. Gilbert, who felt all this, pulled Oz a little closer and drew his legs together so that the boy was properly sitting in his lap with his legs on either side of Gilbert's body.

"I never thought you'd remember," mumbled Gilbert, after lifting his face slightly out of Oz's hair.

"I never thought you'd think I'd forget," mirrored Oz, with a faint smile playing at his lips.

A pause, during which Oz could feel Gilbert smile against his hair, and then "That was the best gift I've ever gotten, by the way." Oz immediately felt some warmth return to his cheeks and his heartbeat quickened since he knew exactly what Gilbert was referring to, as well as the implication of his words. He then internally scolded himself for being so flustered when that was Gil's job.

"That? What're you talking about; that was nothing! Wait till you see what we've got planned for today. It's going to be amazing and-"

Oh. Wait a minute. It was supposed to be a surprise birthday party.

Oz's eyes widened.

"A-and... Um, that was- I mean- I didn't-" Oz was panicking again. Gilbert's earlier words had thrown his mind in a state of chaos so he couldn't think straight, which ended up in him pretty much revealing the epic surprise birthday party he and the rest of the group had planned for weeks (under Oz's guidance of course) for this day.

Sharon and Reim had been the most resourceful as well as helpful, coordinating with Uncle Oscar and Ada for the decorations and other formalities while brilliantly keeping Gilbert occupied somehow whenever he was around. Vincent and Echo were in charge of searching for good places to buy the gifts as well as keeping Gilbert busy while he was outside, in order to prevent him from coming back at the wrong moment. Break was only too happy to take care of the cake, as well as the other treats for the party. Even Alice was excited, though she tried to hide it by claiming that she would 'grace seaweed head's little party' with her 'amazing presence', since there would be no meaning if she were not there, before promptly breaking out into a fit of evil laughter.

Thankfully pretty much everything had been in place before the bad weather showed up; otherwise it would've been almost impossible doing everything they did while Gilbert was around the whole time and obviously, Oz couldn't let him go out either. It would be no fun, after all, if Gilbert was sick on his own birthday.

Gilbert, after seeing the almost comical look of worry on his young Master's face, chuckled softly before offering, "I'll pretend I didn't hear anything."

Oz pouted a little since 'pretending' was just not good enough, but he didn't press on any further. It was best to quickly accept the situation and adapt, after all. And so, he quickly began scheming; he went through the entire plan in his head while trying to find a way to still surprise Gil and inform the others of the slight change of plan in time (while somehow omitting the details of how exactly Oz, of all people, had nearly ended up telling Gil everything).

He was suddenly dragged out of his thoughts when he felt Gilbert's hand on his face, stroking his cheek with his fingers before sliding it below Oz's chin and tilting it up with his index finger. Oz's mind went completely blank when Gilbert then leaned down and gently pressed his lips onto Oz's. Oz's eyes went wide and he gasped – a muffled one – against Gilbert's mouth which the older male didn't hesitate to take to his advantage. Gilbert shyly slipped his tongue past Oz's lips, briefly exploring the younger male's moist cavern before slowly pulling back, much to Oz's dislike.

"Thank you, Oz" mumbled Gilbert against Oz's lips, so softly that it was almost a whisper.

Both males knew that Gilbert was thanking Oz for much more than just the kiss. He thanked Oz for pretty much everything he had done for him, both in the present and past, as well as being there for him, caring for him, and bringing meaning into Gilbert's once-questionable existence. But most importantly, he thanked Oz for returning his love; the best present he could ever wish for.

It truly was the best birthday he'd ever had.

Gilbert opened his eyes, which he had closed when their lips had met, and stared into a pair of gleaming emerald ones while resting his forehead against Oz's. Even without his peripheral vision to notice the obvious tinge of red, Gilbert could easily feel the wonderful warmth being emitted from Oz's cheeks and he was quite sure that Oz could feel the same from him, too. The sight of Oz blushing this much was very rare indeed as well as unbelievably adorable, but Gilbert just managed to resist the urge to tell him that in fear of ruining the mood.

After noticing the tiredness hidden in Oz's expression, Gilbert carefully shuffled lower while leaning back until he was lying down on his side and placed Oz to lie beside him without once breaking their physical contact. Oz snuggled even closer, slinging one leg over Gilbert's as well as an arm around his waist and closed his eyes, while Gilbert pulled the blanket over their entwined frames before closing his eyes as well.

"I love you, Gil," muttered Oz, just before falling asleep. Gilbert's eyes shot open at the sudden confession, but then he smiled fondly down at the precious boy in his arms before leaning down to press a soft kiss to his forehead.

"I love you too, Oz," whispered Gilbert, before dozing off himself.

Both males were completely oblivious to faint rays of sunshine rapidly peeking out from the horizon melding into the now-cloudless midnight blue sky, bleaching it to a dull but lighter blue shade.

By the time they drifted off to the land of dreams, the first rays of sunshine in four days had poured into Oz's room, bathing the sleeping figures in brilliantly warm, golden light as well as on everything else, making it seem almost like the room itself was aglow.

It was going to be a beautiful day.



Gilbert dreamed of his younger, fourteen-year-old self being led by Oz to the parlour of the mansion they were staying in now, where a surprise birthday party then took place just for him. Break was wolfing down pretty much most of the exquisite cake as well as most of the other treats, while Reim tried in vain to stop him before there was nothing else left for the others. Break did nothing except shove a large piece of cake in Reim's mouth before continuing to finish his own. On his shoulder, Emily taunted the bespectacled man for choking on a measly piece of cake and Break laughed heartily. Reim simply sighed – after taking care of the delicious cake of course – before smiling hopelessly at Break.

A grown-up Vincent was somewhere behind them, flirting with a red-faced eighteen-year-old Ada while a silent Echo stood by his side, ignoring her master and observing her surroundings with concealed interest while occasionally taking a bite of her cake. Uncle Oscar was there too, but he was too busy glaring daggers at Vincent from behind Ada. On Gilbert's other side, Alice was devouring each and every meat dish she could spot without even pausing for a drink, and behind her, Sharon berated her for being so unladylike before brandishing her signature paper harisen from goodness-knows-where, getting ready to strike.

Before Gilbert could enjoy the spectacle of the stupid rabbit attempting to fight back for dear life while her powers were sealed, his mind's eye shifted to himself and Oz, sitting next to each other in the middle of all the chaos. He couldn't see it but he knew Oz was holding his hand under the table, swinging his legs freely while feeding spoons of cake to his younger, blushing self. At one point, Oz even sneaked in a quick peck on young Gilbert's cheek when he was absolutely sure no one was paying attention.

Back in the world of reality, a soft smile slowly spread across Gilbert's face.

It was the best sleep he had in ten years.

Phew! I think this is the longest fic I've published so far (well, for Pandora Hearts at least). I could've posted it yesterday if I forced myself to think harder, but I didn't want any part to sound rushed since things written from natural inspiration always sound better :) Therefore, since the 5th had already passed, I figured it wouldn't hurt to delay publishing this for an extra day if it means I can be satisfied with what I wrote. Oh, also, just in case it isn't clear: In the omake, Gil began dreaming shortly after he and Oz fell asleep :)

Anyways, I hope the ending was to your liking! Reviews are also most appreciated :D