Fai and Kurogane had discussed eventually giving up their travels and finding somewhere to settle down, but it was Fai who brought up the idea of going to Nipon.
The group had landed in a new world and, for the first time since they started their new journey without Sakura, Fai and Kurogane were able to have some… privacy. When the battle was done and they had beat Fei Wang Reed, the two decided to formally confess to each other, even though they already knew how the other felt (who gives up their arm or their magic to save another person's life, after all?).
They spent that first night together, and the first world they landed in after leaving Clow had a nice, big house for the group to stay in, giving Fai and Kurogane the whole time they were there to do what they wanted without worrying about Syaoran or Mokona.
But ever since they left that world, they'd been stuck in tiny apartments where they all had to sleep in one room. Syaoran had told Kurogane that he felt bad (because he knew that the two liked having their… private moments), but the older male just sputtered and blushed and told the kid to not worry about things like that.
But eventually, months later, they landed in world where they had a big apartment, one where the bedrooms were on opposite sides of the living room. Syaoran had gone to bed early their first night there (he had gone grocery shopping with Fai and then trained with Kurogane, and the kid can only handle so much in one day), leaving Kurogane and Fai to have that whole night to themselves.
"Hey, Kuro-sama?" Fai asked that night, his cheek resting on Kurogane's chest. Kurogane had learned their first night together that Fai preferred sleeping on top of him rather than next to him, but Kurogane got used to it and used the opportunity to run his fingers through Fai's golden hair.
"Hmm?" Kurogane hummed as he massaged Fai's scalp.
"I'm gonna take a bath," Fai said. He propped himself up to look at Kurogane with a smile. "Why don't you join me?"
Kurogane wasn't a romantic. He rarely said he loved Fai, whereas Fai said it practically every five minutes. So of course he felt a little embarrassed when Fai filled the bathtub with bubbles and lit some candles, but he knew that Fai would get him into the tub eventually, so he decided not to fight it.
Fai ended up between his legs, resting back on his chest after washing himself. "I have an idea," Fai said suddenly as he tilted his head back to rest on Kurogane's shoulder. "Why don't we go to Nipon?"
Kurogane looked at the blonde. "Nipon? You really wanna go there?"
Fai smiled and nodded. "Yeah. It's so pretty and relaxed. Seems like a nice place for mommy and daddy to retire."
Kurogane scoffed and shut his eyes, but thought about it. He could work for Tomoyo, live in some beautiful house that was just big enough for the two of them, come home everyday to see Fai in a kimono…
It sounded perfect, but they weren't going to be leaving Syaoran any time soon. Or at least, that's what they thought.
"Fai, what's wrong?" Syaoran asked a few worlds later when Fai stumbled out of his and Kurogane's bedroom, his hand on his forehead. He collapsed onto the couch and took a deep breath before coughing a bit.
"I think I'm sick," Fai mumbled.
Kurogane appeared above him and brushed his hair out of the way so that he could feel his forehead. "You're burning up, idiot! How did you manage to get sick?"
"Hey! You shouldn't yell at someone who's sick!" Mokona yelled as she bounced onto Fai's stomach.
Fai just gave a weak smile and patted her head. "I'll be fine as long as I can rest. Do you guys mind going shopping without me?"
Fai told the team that he was getting better as the days went on, but when they got to the next world, he was much, much worse.
"Hey mage, keep up," Kurogane said as he slowed down a bit to walk next to Fai, who was trailing behind.
"S-Sorry," Fai panted. Kurogane stopped and made the blonde stop as well to lift his face and get a good look at him. Fai closed his eyes and Kurogane could feel the heat radiating off of him and could see sweat coating his skin, but Fai shivered like he was freezing and panted like he had just ran a marathon.
"Oi!" Kurogane called as Fai fell forward, still panting as Kurogane kept him up.
"Kurogane!" Syaoran called, pointing up to a large building. "I think that's a hospital!"
Kurogane sighed and looked at Fai, who was leaning his entire weight onto the taller man, and realized that the mage was out like a light.
When Fai woke up, he was lying in a hospital bed with a woman hovering over him. "Oh good, you're awake," She said. Fai blinked and realized she was a doctor, judging from her white coat and the clipboard in her hands.
He looked around and saw Syaoran sitting in the chair beside Fai's bed and Kurogane leaning against the wall, his arms crossed. "Why am I here?" Fai asked in a raspy voice.
"Well, you passed out," The doctor said. "You're very sick, but we got you on some medication and ran some tests."
"And? What did the tests say?" Kurogane demanded.
"Well, you don't have any life-threatening diseases," The doctor said. "However… It seems as though your immune system is growing weaker; it's failing you."
"What does that mean?" Syaoran asked.
"It means that Fai will get sick much easier and much quicker than the average person," The doctor said. "And when he does get sick, something as simple as a cold can escalate to something much more dangerous that could potentially become life-threatening."
"Is there anything we can do to fix his immune system?" Syaoran asked.
"Well, no," The doctor answered. "But if he takes medicine, it can act in place of his immune system, and if he rests and tries not to go out too much then he should be fine."
"Should be," Kurogane mumbled.
Fai gave the doctor a bright smile. "Thanks a lot!"
The doctor gave him a strange look, surprised by how happy he was, and nodded slowly.
Before they were given the hospital bill, Mokona was transporting them to a different world, and with the help of Fai's magic, the group ended up in Nipon.
"I wish Kurogane and Fai could stay with us," Mokona whimpered, tears growing in the corners of her eyes.
Fai bent down to look at Mokona, who was sitting on Syaoran's shoulder. He patted her head and smiled softly. "Don't worry, Mokona. You can come visit mommy and daddy whenever you like. Mommy's just a bit too weak to keep on travelling."
Mokona nodded in understanding, but didn't stop crying. Syaoran gave a pained smile. Fai knew that he wasn't looking forward to travelling without his friends. "I hope you get better, Fai."
Fai smiled and nodded. "Thanks. If I do, I'll use my magic to try and come find you guys."
Kurogane watched from behind Syaoran as Fai said his goodbyes, scowling when Fai opened his mouth to say more but was cut off by a violent coughing fit.
"You need to rest," He said to Fai.
"How will you two understand each other once we leave?" Syaoran asked.
Fai smiled. "Kuro-sama has already started teaching me some Japanese," He said, his voice raspy and strained as he tried to keep from coughing. He patted Mokona's head and then Syaoran's. "Now get going you two. You have worlds to see."
"Oi, mage… idiot, why aren't you answering? Is this one of your stupid games? You think pretending to be asleep is funny? 'Cause it's not. …Hey… Wake up already. Wake up! Oi… Mage, th-this isn't funny! Open your eyes! Wake up! Wake up!"
Kurogane shot up into a sitting position as if the futon had burned his back. He ran his hand through his hair, which was damp with sweat, and panted lightly. He groaned and shut his eyes. He had been having different nightmares about Fai ever since they had found out about his condition, but they all ended the same way.
Kurogane noticed the sun trying to peak through the window coverings and looked to his left, seeing that Fai's side of the futon was empty. He stood up and left the bedroom, walking out to the dining room where Fai was sitting on his knees and hunched over the short table.
"Oi," Kurogane said, startling the blonde. "Have you gotten any sleep?"
Fai looked up and smiled sheepishly, his skin pale. "No, I guess the time slipped my mind." Kurogane looked at what Fai had been writing and saw tons of worksheets teachers would give young students that still had some vocabulary and grammar to learn.
He frowned a bit. They'd been in Nipon for months now, and Fai was a fast learner when it came to the language. Kurogane doubted he needed any help because they could hold a conversation just fine (even if Fai's grammar wasn't exactly the best). But Fai insisted on becoming fluent, so Tomoyo had given him different books and worksheets.
"Oh, I need to cook breakfast!" Fai cried when he looked out the window. He jumped up and began cooking, coughing as he did so.
Kurogane noticed that Fai never really seemed to get better. He was always coughing and sounding raspy. But fortunately, he didn't seem to be getting any worse, either.
"You should be resting," Kurogane said as he came up behind Fai and placed his hand over the mage's as he cut some onions. "I can cook."
Fai shook his head. "No, you just—" He coughed and turned away from the food. "Just go get ready."
Kurogane touched Fai's neck and immediately pulled his hand away. "You're burning!" He cried as he turned the blonde around to feel his forehead. "You idiot, you have a fever!"
Fai pushed Kurogane's hand away. "I'm fine!" He said, trying to yell but only sounding weak, especially when he began coughing again.
Kurogane began pulling Fai to the bedroom and Fai tried to put up a fight, but was just too weak. Kurogane lied Fai down and knelt beside him.
"I don't understand why you're so stupid," Kurogane sighed. "If you're feeling sick then just tell me, okay?"
Fai pouted and pulled the blanket up to his nose. "Kuro-protective is annoying."
"You—!" Kurogane sighed and shook his head. "I just don't want you getting any more sick. I'll ask Tomoyo for some of that herbal tea again since that helped you last time."
Fai nodded and closed his eyes, not trying to protest the sleep that overcame him. That day, Kurogane stood beside Tomoyo as the princess looked over different documents. He was officially one of her guards, but Nipon was so peaceful that he really just stood there and talked to her.
"How has Fai been?" She asked softly as she signed something.
Kurogane sighed through his nose. "He stayed up all night last night and had a fever this morning. I was going to ask you if I could have some of that herbal tea you made him last time."
She looked up at Kurogane and smiled. "Of course."
That night, Kurogane went home with a jar full of herbs. Tomoyo had given him the instructions to just boil some water and put a couple pinches of the herbs in, but he was still afraid that he'd mess it up somehow.
"Idiot!" He called as he walked inside. He frowned when he saw that Fai wasn't at the table, even though all of his papers were. He put the jar in the kitchen and then went to the bedroom, not finding Fai there either.
He began panicking at that point and looked everywhere he could think, in every nook and cranny Fai might possibly be able to fit into. He finally opened the door that led to their small backyard. It wasn't much of a yard, just a porch and a large cherry blossom tree at the edge of it. It was like a scaled down version of the cherry blossom tree at the palace, because Fai had loved that so much.
Kurogane stepped out and saw Fai resting against the trunk of the tree, his head limp and his hair covering his face.
He ran over to the blonde and lifted his head carefully. His skin was pale and ashy, his lips white.
"H-Hey!" Kurogane said, shaking the man gently. "Wake up!"
"Oi, idiot! Wake up already!"
Please wake up…
Wake up! Please just open your eyes!
"Ahh, why are you yelling?!"
Kurogane leaned back and saw Fai looking up at him with big, annoyed eyes while rubbing his ears.
"You… You idiot!" Kurogane yelled, unable to stop himself as he wrapped his arms around the skinny man. He pulled away to glare at him. "What the hell do you think you're doing out here?!"
Fai pouted a bit. "I was just resting."
"You shouldn't be outside!" Kurogane yelled. He looked around and then picked Fai up and brought him inside, ignoring the man's protests. "It's cold out there and you're sick!"
Fai frowned and crossed his arms when Kurogane set him down on the futon. "Well, I woke up and I was feeling better, so I cleaned a little bit and worked on some papers, and decided to go outside. I didn't mean to fall asleep."
Kurogane sighed and sat beside the blonde, covering his face with his hands. Fai scooted closer to him and put his hand on his back.
"What's wrong? Did I scare you or something?" Fai asked softly. He would usually say something like this in a teasing tone, but he could tell that Kurogane was legitimately upset.
Kurogane groaned. "Of course you did!" He yelled, looking up at the mage. "Every single day I worry that I'm going to wake up but you're not! And you've been doing really well for a while, but then you suddenly got a fever, and… And you look so pale and just…"
He trailed off and Fai smiled a bit. "Come on, Kuro-puu. You know I'm stronger than that."
Kurogane looked down at the blanket. "But you're not," He mumbled quietly. "Not anymore. You're not a vampire, and unless your magic can heal you…"
"I may not be vampire strong anymore," Fai said. "But trust me. I'm not gonna die for a long, long time. I promise you."
"And how do you know?" Kurogane asked.
Fai grinned. "I don't!"
Kurogane could feel his eye twitch. "You…"
"Wah~ daddy looks so scary!" Fai whined. "Help! Help!"
Kurogane gave Fai a light, harmless slap over the head. "Shuddup, you idiot."
Fai just grinned and leaned against him. "You sure you want me to do that? You might get scared that I'm dead if I stop talking."
Kurogane could feel his ears burn.
"I SAID SHUT UP YOU GODDAMN IDIOT!"
A/N: so I'm really into the whole, "kurogane and fai love each other but won't make it official until everything is over" because idk I think it's more romantic? I don't know, it's like… if I were in that situation, I wouldn't want to confess and make it "real" in case the person I loved died, so yeah…
Anyway, that has nothing to do with anything. So first off, sorry if this story seems kind of... rushed. I reread it and i realized that it might seem to move a bit fast and i didn't realize it when i was writing it. but i did write it pretty quickly so i'm not surprised. i did edit a few parts so that it should flow a bit nicer, but still, sorry if it seems rushed to you!
this is actually based off a doujinshi I read, but I can't remember the name of it! If anyone knows, please go ahead and put it in the reviews! Basically the doujinshi starts where Kurogane is having that nightmare and yeah. I changed a few things, like the ending and such and then added that whole long beginning of how they ended up there because I really loved the idea of Kurogane taking care of a sick Fai.
Okay okay I think I'm done. Go ahead and comment! Thanks a ton for reading!