Jyuushiro couldn't help but feel upset as he sat on the couch in his living room, Toshiro by his side. It hurt that he had to do that to Shunsui, but he honestly couldn't handle it anymore; knowing that Toshiro was now being targeted because of his feelings...

"I'm sorry..." Jyuushiro hated how weak and pathetic he sounded; he felt so useless being unable to stand up to the brunet for his lover.

Hitsugaya shook his head. "What for?"


Toshiro sighed as he shook his head; he couldn't say he wasn't annoyed Jyuushiro was taking this so seriously – it should have been himself who was worried for his older lover. Reaching out, he took the pale hand in his own, rubbing it with his thumb.

"I think he's made it clear how he feels about this," Toshiro said, his voice as cold as his ice Zanpakuto. "He doesn't care about you; he's just jealous. You don't need someone like that in your life, Ukitake. Just forget about him and you'll be happier."

Jyuushiro ducked his head, knowing that the other was right but not wanting to admit it. He hurt enough with the betrayal of his best friend and, to be torn between the two he loved the most...

"Toshiro-kun, I..." Before Jyuushiro could explain how he felt about everything that was happening, there was a knock on his office door. He looked at Toshiro before the other stood up and moved to answer it, not wanting to add any extra stress onto the other.

Toshiro's green eyes narrowed as he stared at a ragged Shunsui, the brunet reeking of sake. Grey eyes were bloodshot, but it looked more as if he had been crying than anything else; stains that looked suspiciously like tears marred his stubbled cheeks.

"What do you want." Toshiro was tempted to slam the door on the other, not wanting to hear whatever was to be said. "Haven't you done enough?"

"I'm sorry..." the words that left the drunk man's lips were slurred, but not from the alcohol, from pain. "...I'm so sorry... I need to see him... To apologise..."

"You honestly think an apology can wipe away all the hurt you've made? Fuck you."

"Wait!" Shunsui's eyes widened and he rushed forward, putting himself between the door and Toshiro, staring behind the smaller boy as if in awe.

Toshiro looked behind him, confused as to what could have elicited this reaction from the Eighth Captain. He turned, finding Jyuushiro standing behind them, tears running down his cheeks.

"..." Jyuushiro didn't speak to his friend; he instead ducked his head, quietly instructing Toshiro to let him in.

As much as Toshiro didn't want to, he stepped back, allowing the other room to come in. He shot a nasty glare at the stubbled man before he followed his two elders further into the room. No one spoke until they were all seated, Jyuushiro behind his desk, Toshiro beside him and Shunsui on the couch that lined the office wall.

Shunsui was the first to speak, quiet and almost timid, as if he were terrified of hearing his best friend's response.

"...I'm..." tears welled up in the man's eyes, "...so sorry... I... I-I was so selfish...! Jyuu, I... I completely understand that I've been such as ass to you! I'm just... I'm just so fucking sorry I did this! I didn't think... I... I fucked up... My best friend... I was a coward...! I couldn't admit that I was the one who was wrong in this... I blamed you... But I... I just don't know what else to say other than sorry... Please... I-I get it if... if you hate me... I can't blame you... Just please... Don't leave me without letting me say sorry..."

"..." Jyuushiro closed his eyes, hiding tearful green orbs. "...You've really hurt me... And now that I'm finally happy, after all these years... It felt like you were just trying to use me... Like you didn't care... It hurt so much... Ky... Shunsui... Don't come and apologise like this after so many years... You need to leave me alone... I am happy now... Don't take that away from me..."

A large hand reached up to wipe at his tears as Shunsui shook his head. "You... You're my best friend...!"

"You were mine... But... You're not good for me... I have to take care of myself, now... Just let me be... I want to be alone... It hurts too much to pretend this never happened... Please... Understand..."

As much as Shunsui didn't want to, he could only nod, knowing that he had fucked up, unable to fix the damage he had caused. Maybe Jyuushiro was right. Maybe he had merely been jealous, attempting to use Jyuushiro just to spite Toshiro. If that was the case... They were better off away from each other, starting fresh with their lives. It would kill him inside, but... if it was what Jyuushiro wanted...

"...Okay..." Shunsui bowed his head in defeat, standing up to leave. Though he had never been one to accept defeat easily, he knew when he was fighting a losing battle. Jyuushiro was determined, he wanted to be alone, he didn't want Shunsui in his life anymore... "...Be happy with Toshiro..."

As he turned around to leave, a warm hand grabbed Shunsui's. He turned around, finding Jyuushiro watching him with pained eyes, tears slipping down his pale cheeks.

"...I'll talk to you at the next captains' meeting?" A hopeful tone filled Jyuushiro's soft voice.

Shunsui's eyes widened; did Jyuushiro... Still want to be around him...? "...What...?"

"...It hurts to be like this, but..." Jyuushiro coughed before he continued, "...it hurts more to know that we'll never... be friends again... I... I want to start over..."

As realisation watched over Shunsui, he couldn't help but smile, squeezing the hand that held his. He nodded, knowing that this could be the answer to their problems; they would never fix what had happened between them, but maybe... Just maybe... starting over could help ease the pain better than completely severing their relationship...

Jyuushiro smiled back. "Hi. I'm Jyuushiro Ukitake."

Shunsui couldn't help but laugh before he replied, feeling tears of happiness slide down his cheeks, mingling with his stubble. "Shunsui Kyōraku. Nice to meet you."

Toshiro watched from the desk, ready to intervene the second he felt something was about to go wrong but, as he watched, he couldn't help but notice the genuine smile gracing Ukitake's face. Having gotten his best friend back... Jyuushiro was happy again.

As long as things would work out this time, if Jyuushiro could be happy than Toshiro could, too, even if he would never get over his resentment for Shunsui. But, looking at them now, he didn't think either of them would hurt the other again.

What a cheesy ending! I originally planned to have them completely cut ties but it was too sad to do so XD If you notice anything you think should be different to make it not as cheesy, please do point out! XD