A/N: A special thanks to MonyMoon98 for beta editing! Hopefully this looks mistake free now. And thanks to the people who faved, followed, alerted, reviewed, and continue to read!

Disclaimer: I'd say I own everything, but then that'd earn me a hot seat in court, and possibly a "get into jail free" pass. I don't think I'd last in prison. I heard it's a great place for people who love to shank though...


Misaki

I woke up in an unfamiliar room, with an unfamiliar face staring at me. "You're awake," the male doctor said. He was an old, pale, bald guy. "You know you had one hell of a heart attack, Takahashi-san."

Another doctor—a female doctor—entered the room just as he spoke those words. She shook her head, and fixed her glasses. "No, I think it was a panic attack."

"Heart attack," the first doctor clarified. While I tried to process what was being spoken, he began looking at some documents on his clipboard. "When a patient has to be resuscitated and then a defibrillator is used on them, it means they've died. Panic attacks don't lead to death. Strokes and heart attacks do."

"Panic attack," she argued.

He glared at the blonde woman, but kept his composure by sighing. "He was pronounced dead for three minutes." What…? How in the hell…? Where was Usagi-san?!

"I know you're the new intern," he continued. "But this should be basic knowledge for you. I've worked here for many years. Remember that my opinion is the professional one, not yours." She stuck her nose up at him and left. I honestly didn't see why she entered in the first place.

When he looked at me, I asked, "Where's Usagi-san?! Is he okay?!"

He darted his eyes towards the monitor, watching the lines beeping. "Takahashi-san, you need to calm down."

"Where's Usagi-san?!" I inquired again, ignoring his demand.

He furrowed his brows. "Who?"

My jaw was taut. "Usami Akihiko. Where is he?" I didn't want him seeing me like this, but I needed to know he was okay. I doubt he would be after our phone conversation, and after anyone telling him that I died. I can only imagine the pain I'd put him through.

"Please keep calm as best as you can," he said. "If you can't do that, I'll have to sedate you."

That only made me panic more. "Please don't put me to sleep," I begged.

I think I must have been appealing to the man in some way, because his face flushed. It became uncomfortable for the both of us when he saw that I noticed the large erection growing in his trousers. He probably hadn't had sex in years—either that or he denied his sexual preference his whole life—and constantly thought about what could've been. Either way that sucks, but if he tried anything, I'd slit his throat.

"I'll let your guests know that you'd like to see them," the doctor concluded, hurrying away.

"One of them," I corrected. He disregarded me and exited the room.

A short moment later, the door opened. My face lit up, only to lose all life when I saw the first visitor enter. He wasn't the man I wanted to see. "Don't look so down, shorty," Isaka said. He pointed over his shoulder. "He'll be back soon. He had to get some preparations ready after his last visit." Last visit?

"How long have I been here?" I asked, sitting up.

He crossed his arms and leaned against the wall. "Two days."

"Oh." I began fiddling with my fingers, noticing that the skin was mostly its normal shade again. There was cream on some of the spots that were still blotchy and red, but they didn't hurt like they did when I made them. It looked like I was a psoriasis patient though.

"Your lips are still healing," he stated. "They've scabbed over in some places, but your doctor said they'll heal in a little while." I touched them, feeling some lip balm on them. It was probably medicated. I frowned when I felt the hard scabs, mostly on my bottom lip. I shouldn't have tried to rub the skin off. That was stupid of me, but…

"When will Usagi-san be back?" I asked.

He shrugged. "Not long." I couldn't hide my pout.

My reason for being wasn't here.

"That Shinobu kid will be too," he added. "He looked reluctant to leave yesterday." Shinobu? The brat? "The others will be returning too, but I'm on watch while Akihiko's gone."

I plopped back down on my pillow and clasped my hands over my stomach. How could I do that to myself? How could allow myself to be the victim again? It just didn't make any sense. I was used to being able to defend myself but every time I was around Raiden, he—well he just made me feel lower than dirt. The feeling of always being on my knees—of being submissive—it hurt more than I allowed anyone to know.

I thought it was over. I thought Raiden would leave me alone… Then again, there were a lot of things I thought would happen in life, but didn't. It's just one big wave of disappointments that I could never understand.

Why was this happening to me now, when everything was so perfect?

"Just out of curiosity," Isaka said. I wish he'd leave, but then again I didn't want to be alone knowing Raiden was in the city. "Where'd you put it?"

"Put what?"

"Your medication. Akihiko said it wasn't at the house." He raised an eyebrow at me, giving me this challenging gaze. "He was so upset he got into an argument with me and Aikawa about it. I've never seen him so livid before."

I frowned. "Why did he—?"

"Because your doctor said you had no medication in your system when you were checked for substances," he explained. "Meaning you neglected taking it, and that triggered several anxiety attacks afterwards. They also said you were so overly stressed that when the anxiety attacks stopped, your body reacted by giving you a heart attack instead. So let me ask you again: Where's the medication?"

"I…" I slowly shook my head, and he didn't seem to like that. "I don't know."

He scoffed. "You used to be good at lying, shorty."

"You used to drop it and leave it be," I retorted.

He smirked. "Well none of us are really who we say we are these days. You should know all about that right? Pretending to be a normal college student and all..." I didn't know how to respond just yet. I knew Isaka wasn't to be trusted since the day that I met him, but I also knew that most people could say the same about me too.

"Quite a track record," he continued. "I'm amazed the school allowed a person like you entry. Akihiko must have omitted some of your records huh?"

That stung, even if he was right. It think that's why it hurt worse. "You think introducing yourself as a murderer is easy?"

He sighed and waved his hand at me, glaring. "You want my honest opinion about you, Misaki?" I knew it was bad since he called me by my name.

No. "Yeah."

He walked over to my bed and lifted his chin, scrutinizing me. He waited a moment before he spoke. "I don't understand how Akihiko could even think about jeopardizing his whole career for some juvenile ex-convict. Sure you're attractive. You've got looks—I'll give you that. But what else is there, Misaki? What do you have to offer him?" He sure knew how to make me feel worthless.

"To offer him?"

"You've been living with him for a while now, and yet you do nothing. He's your only source of income. You just seem like the boy toy he pays to stay with him on the side—"

"We didn't even start sleeping together when we met," I replied. "He's never paid me for it either, so fuck off." My tone must have sounded like acid, because he flinched and rubbed his temples.

"I'm not calling you a street whore, but I am saying that Akihiko won't always be there to secure you. He shouldn't be now either. I don't like the idea of him neglecting his work just to see about you. It's unhealthy, and quite frankly disrespectful. But as long as he has an interest in you, I can't do anything about it. I'm fucked because he dictates every second of his life based on what someone like you would want."

"So you're pissed at both of us?" I asked. I began nodding to myself, already knowing the answer to my question.

"Yes, but mostly you." I figured as much.

I shrugged. "Good to know?"

"It is." He was the first to openly admit that he wasn't comfortable with me around. Even though Isaka always gave me a bad vibe to begin with, it kind of hurt to hear the truth out loud—okay it hurt a lot—a hell of a lot actually.

"You really can't stand me, can you?" I asked him.

He scoffed. "Not at all." I never understood what I did to make him so angry. Then again, I never understood him and he definitely didn't understand me.

"Misaki!" Aikawa shouted. She entered with a basket of food and orange flowers. There was no makeup on her face today, and there were prominent bags under her eyes. She looked as if she'd been crying, but I didn't want to ask what for.

When she reached my bed, she sat down on the edge, and placed the basket of food down. I thought it odd that she looked so timid. She wasn't even sitting beside me, but at the foot of the bed, biting her bottom lip. "Are you... Are you feeling any better?" she asked after a while. Her voice was hoarse, nothing remotely close to her usual hyped tone.

I nodded. "I think I'm feeling better than you look." She looked like she'd been through a struggle.

She laughed lightly, but it was forced. After averting her eyes and brushing her hair behind her ear, she burst into tears and stood, rushing over to me. I allowed her to hug me, and I scowled at Isaka's retreating back as he started exiting the room. "You were dead for three minutes," Aikawa cried.

Slowly, I lifted my arms, returning the hug. Aikawa cared if I died?

She pulled away to get a view of my face. "Don't you ever do this to yourself again! Do you hear me?!"

"Aikawa-san—"

"Do you hear me?!" When I nodded, she wiped at her tears furiously and examined my skin, shaking her head. "Do you know how many people you made cry in that emergency room?!"

"People—people cried because of me?" I couldn't help but be stunned.

She responded by slapping me. "What?! Do you think no one cares about you, Misaki?!" Realization flashed in her gaze, and she lowered her tone. "Misaki, do you really think that?"

"Sometimes. I know Usagi-san loves me, and Takahiro. I just—I guess I just figured that you're putting up with me because Usagi-san is…" Isaka made it clear he was.

She cupped my face in her hand and kissed my forehead, making me blush. "Don't ever think you're alone. If you need me for anything know that I'm right here. Alright?"

"Alright…"

She stood, just as Shinobu and Miyagi entered. "I'll be back later," she assured me. "Remember what I said."

"I will," I answered. She patted Shinobu's cheek on her way out, squealing in her fan girl way. I could only imagine what she was picturing him doing with Miyagi.

Shinobu's face was bright red, but he still had a pout on his face. In his hands there was a beautiful bouquet of flowers, yellow and peach in color. He kept his gaze fixed on the floor, and sat down right next to me on the bed, making room for himself without permission. I scooted over a little and waited for him to speak. I couldn't tell if he was mad, or just hoping to get some nerve to talk to me.

"We got you these," he grumbled, placing the flowers in my lap. "They're Baby Romantica."

I traced my finger over one of the soft petals in the arrangement. They were perfect. "Thanks," I whispered.

He frowned and folded his arms, leaning back against the rest. After he turned his head away he whispered, "I'm glad you're okay."

I found myself unable to hold back my smile. Shinobu was a little rough around the edges, but he was a nice person—although he did have a bit of an attitude problem—then again so did I. "Thank you."

He just grunted and made himself comfortable beside me, lifting his legs up on the bed as if it was his to begin with. Even though he didn't admit it, I could tell he didn't want to leave again. I actually found that aspect so cute about him.

He blushed when he noticed me staring. "Is—is it alright if I stay here for a while?" I had to wonder why Shinobu was suddenly attached to me, not that I minded, but the last time I saw him he was a bit of a terrorist.

I nodded, smirking. "Yeah. It's fine."

Miyagi cleared his throat and sat down at the edge of the bed. "The police were here to ask you questions earlier, but you had gone back to sleep." I groaned and he chuckled. "They're the good guys."

"No, they're the assholes that do nothing until after you've been violated." I shivered when I thought of Raiden's tongue in my throat. I was beginning to think that being even the least bit attractive was a sin, and that God was punishing me by allowing all this shit to happen. It really wasn't fair. If I could throw a tantrum I would.

"What exactly happened that made you do that to yourself?" Miyagi asked me. When I peered over at him again, he lifted his hand and shook his head. "If you're too uncomfortable—"

"The guy that spent years raping me broke into my boyfriend's apartment and molested me," I explained in a dull voice. "I don't…" I closed my eyes, reliving the moment where he put his hands in my jeans. "I don't know where he went, but I know he's not far." I slowly opened my eyes, gazing at my hands again. "I know he's watching, and I can't do anything about it."

I didn't look over at Shinobu, who I could see staring at me from my peripheral vision. I think I would have broken down if I had looked, because I knew the look he was giving me, that one of sympathy. Miyagi was a cool guy, because when he sensed my discomfort he changed the subject. "You're Kamijou's student?"

I raised a brow. "Kamijou?"

"Kamijou Hiroki," he stated.

"Oh, yeah. He's a pretty nice teacher."

He chuckled. "Ah, you're the first student to say that." Beside Nowaki...

Although my face flushed, I grinned. "Yeah. He's not really a people person, but neither am I."

"You're doing well for a loner," he commented.

I shrugged and sat up, bringing my knees to my chest while I hugged them. "Is Shinobu your boyfriend?"

I laughed when Shinobu's face turned three shades of red. Miyagi didn't seem to mind, and answered right away. "Yes, and I love him very much—even if he is a bit of a brat. He's my brat." Aw, I loved his honesty.

I examined how uncomfortable and embarrassed Shinobu was, but he was also smiling a little. They were so cute. They kind of reminded me of the relationship that Usagi-san and I had—our age gap thing.

"At least you didn't call me a kid," Shinobu muttered.

"Do you want me to?" Miyagi asked. He had a grin on his face. He was a very playful man, but... I think he'd been through a lot. Most adults that I knew like him were.

Shinobu mumbled something to himself. It was probably 'I'm not a kid.'

I chuckled again. "It's annoying isn't it?"

"You have no idea," he grumbled.

"I'm gonna have to disagree with you there. I've got a thickheaded idiot at home who treats me like I'm an eight year old who scraped his knee—even though he's got the mind of one."

Shinobu's face brightened, but it faded back into his small pout all too quickly. "Do you cook?"

"Little things, but they don't taste as good as what my brother's fiancé makes. I'm learning though, for Usagi-san. Why? Do you cook?"

"I make cabbage," he stated proudly. He leaned closer to me and whispered, "But it's not that great. Miyagi doesn't help when he lies about it tasting good either. I can't improve if I don't know what part of it tastes bad."

I patted his shoulder. "Don't worry. If there's one thing I know, it's how to cook cabbage. That's about the only thing I've got right so far—cooking vegetables I mean. I can teach you."

He smiled appreciatively and nodded. "Okay, but then I get to teach you to be more social," he murmured.

I scoffed. "No way," I argued.

"Take it or leave it. I want you to meet my friends," he hissed. "You can't love hanging around boring business people all the time, can you?"

I sighed. He had a point. My days were a bit repetitive. "Can I bring my sister Oichi when you feed me to your pack of lions?"

He lifted his brows, surprised. When he leaned closer to me, he asked, "You've got a sister?" I don't know why we started whispering but it was fun. Our heads were practically touching as we spoke, and our hands were covering each other's ears. It was like watching two siblings exchanging secrets.

I nodded to his question, and he seemed intrigued. "Oh I've got a sister," I replied.

"I thought you just had a brother?"

I positioned my hands so that it looked like I was praying, and gazed towards the ceiling. "The lawd works in mysterious ways," I said. I used an accent I saw after watching an episode of The Boondocks. There was this funny episode about a pimp and his hoes.

He snickered. "So she's related to you by blood then?" Au contraire...

"Nope. My sister was born from different parents."

"Surrogates?"

"Nope."

"Foster care?"

"Nope."

"Test tube?"

"Hell no."

He blinked, and when he shook his head, our hair brushed against each other. "…I'm not getting this."

"It's alright. Usagi-san didn't get it at first either, but just wait 'til you meet her." We sealed our deal with a handshake and smirked. I liked Shinobu, quite a lot.

Miyagi watched us curiously, probably wondering what we were talking about. "I don't even want to know."

"You're a smart man," I stated with a smirk.


Later that day, Oichi had visited. She met Shinobu and Miyagi, and a short while after her leave, Aikawa and Isaka had entered the room again. Isaka was sporting one hell of a shiner on his right eye, and Aikawa seemed mighty satisfied when she saw that I had noticed it. She wouldn't… would she?

Isaka said nothing to me, but kept his gaze on the wall, silently fuming. Nowaki and Hiroki entered right behind them, and when Nowaki approached me, he gave me a big hug. I missed his hugs, even though I do recall him hugging me during the car ride, before I passed out. Not my fondest hug from him though...

He pulled back to see my features, and began fixing my bangs by brushing them to the side. "Misaki, you had us so worried!"

"I'm sorry," I apologized. For some reason seeing Nowaki's frown hurt the most, probably because he reminded me so much of Takahiro. Speaking of which, where was my brother?

"Hiro-san was pacing the apartment all night," Nowaki reported. "We even took a day off yesterday to see you."

I frowned after hearing this. "Nowaki, you've got a lot of side jobs. You can't just—"

"You're more important," he assured me.

He seated himself on my right side, since Shinobu was on my left. Wow, I never thought I'd be sharing a bed with so many men. I wonder how many people had these fantasies?

Miyagi greeted them with a wave, but the look on his face was so mischievous, like he wanted to bother Hiroki. The shenanigans we could get into against Hiroki were endless. Where had this man been all my life? "Kamijou!" Miyagi called. "You're back!"

"I only left for a few hours," Hiroki muttered. He took that as the time to hand me some flowers. "Baby Romantica," he said. They were more pinkish in color than Shinobu and Miyagi's, but all the roses I received today were precious.

"Thanks guys," I said. "It really means a lot to me that you're here."

"We care about you," Aikawa stated. She glared at Isaka for a fraction of a second, before beaming at me. Yeah, she'd definitely hit him. I smiled, only for it to slowly fade. Someone was missing.

Where was my reason for being?

Why the hell was he taking so long? I swear I was having withdrawal symptoms. I needed Usagi-san.

"You okay?" Shinobu asked me. I don't think he'd ever get that pout off his face, or the blush.

I glanced at the monitor. Its beeping was increasing. I was panicking.

"Misaki," Hiroki called me. "Not again… Aikawa, go get—"

"I'm on it," she replied, hurrying to the door.

It opened before she could get to it though, and the most beautiful man to ever grace this earth appeared in all his distraught, mystifying glory. I got the same giddy feeling I had when I had come home to see him, right before the Raiden incident. This was my life, my world.

This was my Usagi-san.

His eyes locked with mine and all anxiety was erased from both our expressions. He blew out a small breath of air, while my monitor quieted. I practically bounced in my bed when he began walking over to me. I could just picture an eight year old me saying, "Usagi-san's here! Usagi-san's here!" I had the delight of a child on a hot day who had just spotted the ice cream truck they'd been waiting for. I had the eagerness and adrenaline of a thrill seeker about to sky dive—of a winner just about to get handed his trophy after being announced—of a lover waiting for their soul mate to make their way through the crowd just to give them that electrifying kiss they'd been craving.

Translation: I was on fucking cloud nine.

Nowaki and Shinobu held me in place when I attempted to get out of bed. "The doctor said he doesn't want you out of bed until you're permitted to leave," Nowaki explained.

Shinobu peered up at Usagi-san when the man had made his way over, and slowly scooted off the bed so that Usagi-san had room to place a small, timid kiss on my lips. I think he thought he might hurt me. I did have scabs, and medicated lip balm on them after all.

He combed his hand through my hair and seated himself at my side, right where he belonged. "Misaki," he spoke up. God, I think I had a mini orgasm right there. "How are you feeling?" He started stroking my cheek with the back of his hand and I nearly purred. The things his touch did to me… The things I wanted his hands to do to me right now…

"Better," I stated, covering my palm over his. I breathed in his cologne and shut my eyes. When I opened them again, I said, "Much better."

He looked like he'd been crying an awful lot, and I lowered my gaze, ashamed. I made Usagi-san upset. I hurt him, even if I didn't mean to. It wasn't right.

He lifted my chin, forcing me to look at him. "You have to tell me and the police exactly what happened, alright Misaki?"

I was about to protest, but then I noticed that he too had bags under his eyes, just like Aikawa. "O-okay… Where's Takahiro?"

"I made him go home and rest," Usagi-san stated. "He looked worse than me this morning." And Usagi-san looked like he hadn't slept since the dawn of time. Where was his coffee?

The door opened, and I expected to see a doctor, but a nurse came in. She pointed an accusing finger at Usagi-san, although she was turning red after seeing his flawless features. "Usami-san, you can't leave all those arrangements in the lobby! The doctors are furious—but they are really beautiful. Good choice." She shook her head frantically. "But they need to be removed now!"

He waved the statement off. "Misaki needs to walk out of here on floors filled with lilac petals, and beautiful hanging vines, just like Nebuchadnezzar's hanging garden. Besides, it was too boring to have him walk out with all those sick people lurking about."

"You mean people waiting to be checked out?" Hiroki asked with a bored tone.

"Those would be the ones." I rolled my eyes. They were so… rich.

Shinobu arched his brow, and cocked his head to the side. "Why does Misaki need to walk on lilac petals?"

They met eyes and Usagi-san grinned. I got an urge to whistle when he said, "Because all of the Baby Romantica at the nearest flower shop were gone."

Shinobu didn't see his logic, and I'm sure that wasn't the response he was expecting. "O-okay…?"

Usagi-san shrugged. "And I know his favorite color is purple, so I bought lilacs."

I face palmed. "You're not normal."

He pouted. "I thought you'd figured that out by now."

Shinobu looked at Miyagi and arched his brow. "What's my favorite color?" Well this wasn't going to end well.

Nowaki smiled and looked at Hiroki. "Hiro-san, what's my favorite color?!" He reminded me of a puppy wanting love from its owner. It was a shame he might get rejection today, considering Hiroki looked like he was searching his brain for an answer he didn't have.

You could just feel the tension building in the room when none of the semes spoke. I frowned at Usagi-san and punched his arm lightly. "You did this," I hissed. "Oh don't look so innocent!"


After I had gotten checked out, Usagi-san and I spent the afternoon at the police station, filing a report. The talk with the police was terrifying, and Usagi-san was there the entire time, listening to what happened with a scowl on his face. He looked ready to kill.

When it was over, I told Usagi-san that I needed a moment and went to the restroom.

Once inside I leaned against the sink counter and took some deep breaths, allowing myself to cry. My body shook as I did, and I began sobbing. Raiden was still out there, and there was nothing I could do about it. To make matters worse, Usagi-san was now involved. I just wanted to go back to the day before all this mess happened, when I was carefree and finally happy with my progress about fitting in with society. Now all I wanted was what the suicides craved, a way out.

"I can't keep doing this," I whispered between sniffles. I was getting nervous again, and my heart was pounding. Raiden was going to toy with me before he had his way with me again. This was just the beginning of all the bullshit.

Usagi-san entered the facility amidst my sobs, and met my gaze in the mirror as he approached. He rubbed his hands up and down my arms, soothing me. "He won't touch you again," he said. His voice was raw, stern, determined, like he was making a declaration of war, not assuring me.

"Don't do something stupid," I begged, wiping my tears. "Please don't do something stupid."

"Everything I do is because I want to protect you, Misaki," he told me. He spooned me from behind, hugging my waist.

"You can't do anything crazy," I told him. He couldn't protect me if he was dead either.

"I won't."

"You have to promise."

He chuckled and lowered his head slowly, watching my gaze in the mirror. I held back a sound when his lips and tongue met with the skin on the crook of my neck, but I couldn't contain the shiver that went through me.

"Usagi-san, we can't do this here. It's—it's inappropriate—tch!" Oh fuck it, just fuck it all...

To say that I belonged in a jail cell was adequate, considering that me and Usagi-san screwed around in the most holy all bathrooms, the ones in the police station. It was fun, thrilling even. It was a distraction, watching our love making in the giant bathroom mirror...

But once it was over and we left the building, I was upset again. As we headed to his car, the anger in me was rising.

He didn't promise.


"The penthouse is that way," I stated when he drove by the building.

He kept his eyes on the road for once, with a glimmer of determination in his eyes again. What was he up too? "We're not staying there until this whole thing is sorted out," he stated.

"But our things—"

"Are already packed," he explained. "We're going to stay at a hotel until the flight's ready."

I gaped at him. "What flight?"

"We're going away," he said matter-of-factly. "We're going to my home."

"England?"

"That would be correct. Until then we're staying at a hotel. I made reservations."

"Can we go say goodbye to Takahiro and everybody else first?" I asked. I had made two new friends. I intended on keeping them. Suddenly disappearing felt wrong, especially after Shinobu and I made plans.

He shook his head. "No."

He wasn't serious was he? "U-Usagi-san—"

"Takahiro's coming with us. His fiancé is too."

I was still concerned about the others, but a little relieved that Takahiro would be coming. We were leaving...

We were leaving?

We were going to run away?

I didn't like that idea, but it did seem wise. "That's all?" I asked, suspicious of his plan.

"That's all."

He was lying.


Arriving at the hotel was a stress reliever, and when we got to the elegant room Usagi-san and I took a soothing bubble bath. I sunk lower in the tub, sitting between his legs, while I closed my eyes. "You didn't promise earlier," I said. I started stroking the arm he was holding me with under the water. Eventually he started lathering my chest with suds.

"I don't need to," he replied. I hated the way he talked to me sometimes, the same way Miyagi talked to Shinobu, like a child. It was annoying. I kind of wanted to hit him.

"You always promise if I ask," I stated.

"But you didn't ask."

As I gazed up, I glowered. "I'm asking now."

"No."

"Usagi-san—"

"No. You don't get a say in this. You tried that already. You lied to me."

I shook my head. "I only lied because I wanted to protect you!"

"Well I'm not lying when I say that I'll do anything and everything to protect you, Misaki. I'm in this whether you want me to be or not."

I wanted to smack that superior look right off his face. As I got out of the tub and covered myself with a towel, I sighed. "You don't know the whole situation."

"And whose fault is that?" His words stung like poison.

I started to exit the bathroom, only to stop and shake my head. I was getting the last say. "You know what?! You always get to know about my past, even when some of it's sugarcoated!"

"So?"

"So my point is that you never tell me about any of your bullshit, Usagi-san! All I know is you've got some family issues with your father and brother! But so far you know that I'm a murderer, that I've been to prison, that I've been raped, and that some sick asshole is out to get me! So far I know nothing about you and you know way too much about me!"

"I don't have to tell you my business," he replied.

"Oh, so I'm the only one who has to keep their shit out in the open?!"

"Misaki—"

"Don't try to talk your way out of this! You're not ignoring this! You're not!" When he looked at me, there was a scowl on his face. "How do you expect me to open up to you when you can't even do the same for me?! Just this once is all I'm asking for, Usagi-san! Meet me halfway just this once! Please?!"

He lowered his gaze. "There are things you don't need to know about my life."

My blood boiled. "Like what?! Name them!"

He was getting pissed. "All of them," he said, giving me that superior look again.

"Ugh!" There was no winning with him!

I left the bathroom, slamming the door behind me. I searched the luggage for my clothes and halted when I saw my diary. Grabbing it, I went to the bed and sat down. I took a pen that was on the nightstand, and after unlocking the chains from the book, I wrote like hell.

Entry 4

I lost my dad when he became gay.

There. I said it.

This morning was the calm before the storm I was about to cause, because after today I would be free. I woke up like usual. I climbed out of bed, but on my way to the bathroom, dad was there. He looked the same as last night, lustful. I gulped when he yanked me by my arm and knelt.

The term eye-fucking had never been more accurate than it was that day.

"Good morning," he greeted me.

I started trembling when his nosed pressed against my cheek. "Please let me go," I whispered.

He looked like he was in pain. "Don't beg me, Misaki." He grabbed my jaw and said, "Open."

My mouth stayed tightly shut. It opened when I gasped though, when his hand had startled me. I was only eight, but I knew that his hand wasn't supposed to be there. He wasn't supposed to do that to me, not to me. I was his own flesh and blood. He was supposed to protect me from people like this, sick people like him.

He took a whiff of my morning breath, inhaling it like a drug addict. A wet kiss was placed on my cheek.

"I—I need to use the bathroom," I announced. Although after his inspection of my body I was sure that I had already soiled myself.

His face brightened and he stood, holding my hand. "I'll go with you," he said.

I yanked my hand free. "I can go by myself…" I frowned and retreated a little when he started shaking his head. I wasn't going to get out of this. "Please, I don't need you—"

"Don't beg me like that!" he snapped in a harsh whisper. He was clearly enraged, and I took a step back, only to have him drag me towards the bathroom. "Don't you dare scream," he warned, before locking us both inside.

It's hard to urinate and shower with a parent watching and getting pleasure out of it. Even brushing my teeth sent this man in ecstasy.

When we had finished, I exited the bathroom in my towel and went to my room to change. He started to follow and I fought back a scream. My expression was blank, void of any emotion that would give away how much I truly wanted to run from him. So I kept quiet and went through the motions.

I changed into my school clothes and left, pretending he wasn't there the entire walk to the kitchen.

My mother noticed my stoic gaze as I sat down. Why didn't she go looking for me? I saw it then, more bruises on her skin. This time it was on her collarbone and arm. She tugged at both areas of her shirt and fixed them so that they weren't exposing that purple and black flesh. When she smiled, I greeted her with a hollow stare. My will to fake a grin was gone.

I glanced at Takahiro. He had his head low, eyes focused on his breakfast while he ate. He knew what was going on. He knew what dad was thinking whenever he looked at us, and yet there he sat. My mind kept screaming at him to do something. Why wouldn't he help us?! But I knew the answer...

Everyone was pretending again.

The front door opened and I stiffened. They were back, the man and woman from last night. My mother glared at my father. "You gave them keys to my house?" she asked.

"Our house," he corrected. "Besides my names on the lease, not yours. I paid for it."

"Hey Misaki," the woman greeted me, ignoring my mother. I simply stared at my filled breakfast plate, too repulsed to eat. I just wanted to become invisible.

Takahiro greeted them as if they were saviors. He was always nice to people, even the ones that deserved no kindness. He also had a hard time with change, since it still hadn't sunk in his head that dad and these idiots were the enemy.

It was okay. When the evening hit, they were going to be gone.

I had it all planned out. Mom was going to be working late again, leaving me to fend for myself. I could handle it. I knew how to end them. The idea of finally being free from their perverted eyes excited me. So when I came home from school with Takahiro, and he told me he was staying at his friend's house, I smiled.

"Good," I said.

He raised a brow. "Good?"

I nodded and hurried to my room. "See you later!"

"Um…?" He said nothing else, and I grinned when I finally heard the front door close.

Showtime.

Dad walked in and he was surprised when I spread my arms for him to hug me. Don't mistake my motive. I knew what I was doing. He embraced me, yet again smelling my childlike aroma. "How was school?"

"It was fine," I stated, kissing his cheek. I had to make this believable, so I didn't even flinch when he grinned at me. "How was your day, dad?"

"Better now that you're here," he assured me.

"Do you want to play a game later? It's called heat and triggers."

He held me by my waist, nodding. "I'd love for us to play a game later, Misaki. I've never heard of that one before though. How do we play?"

I smirked victoriously. I'd win. "I'll show you later. You'll love it. It's… it's very different."

I took his hand and led him to his room. It reeked of sex, just like his friends, but I kept a tight smile on my face. "When was the last time you morons bathed?" I asked. I made sure that there was humor in my tone.

The man laughed at my outburst and smiled when he noticed my grin. "You seem in a better mood than last night kid."

"I am in a better mood," I stated, crossing my arms. "Dad and I are gonna play a game later, but seriously you two reek."

"Mind if we take a shower?" the woman asked me.

"How about I run you two a nice, relaxing bath?" I offered. "It's the least I can do for throwing stuff at you yesterday." They believed my innocent, deceiving smile, but my inner me was jumping for joy.

I rushed off to the bathroom and began running some hot water. As the water poured, I went over to the sink and looked in the cabinet underneath. "Nope," I murmured. My item of choice wasn't in the bathroom.

Walking down the hall, I heard them talking about me. "He's in a bright mood. I think you should do it. He could be willing."

"Don't bring that up around Misaki," dad warned. "I want to ease him into this experience." Like he eased it into me this morning? I didn't think so.

I went into the utility room and grabbed a bottle of fluid that dad used at the last family barbeque. There was satisfaction in my eyes when I returned to the bathroom and mixed the entire bottle into the bath water. I quickly covered it up by adding a bunch of bubbles.

Just as I placed the bottles in the lower cabinet under the sink, one of dad's friends walked in. It was the man. "You like bubbles?" he asked me.

I nodded, faking a smile again. "I love bubbles. Maybe next time the two of us can take a bath together."

He seemed delighted by this thought, and moved his head eagerly. "I'd like that."

I grinned at him, and even brushed my hand over his as I left. I'd feel the least guilty about killing him once it was all said and done. When I walked to the living room, I picked up the phone and dialed Takahiro's cell number. He answered on the first ring. "Misaki, are you okay?!"

I waved a dismissive hand, rolling my eyes. I was better than okay. I was about to perform one hell of a liberation. "I'm fine," I stated, sounding so innocent.

"Then what's wrong?"

"What if I destroyed something of yours? Would you be mad at me?"

He sighed. "Misaki, whatever you broke—"

"Destroyed," I corrected.

"Whatever you destroyed, I wouldn't be mad about it. I'd forgive you."

"Promise?"

"I promise."

"You can't take this back Takahiro." I couldn't chicken out now. What I required was freedom. To get that I had to eliminate the jailer.

"Misaki, I promise."

"Okay." Before he could say anything else I hung up. I took the matches out of my pocket and smirked.

"Misaki, I'm sure the water's high enough! Some of it's pouring on the floor!" one of them called. Excellent...

I tossed the match box up and laughed lightly on my way to linen closet. After getting some towels I whispered, "I wonder where dad keeps his gun…"


Tsu-chan: Lol in high school, no we couldn't use cell phones. In college classes, it depends. Some of my teachers don't care, and some just say if you've got a call or whatever do it outside. I still pull my phone out when I need to show them something though, and they don't mind. When you text and ignore them then they do. My friend got kicked out of the class for that once. The next day she apologized and came back, but the teacher used her as an example and made jokes about it for the rest of the semester. She was embarrassed. I think everyone besides the bigots in the world want a gay friend! P.S. I hope you recovered from your illness!

Tech Savvy: Smash both their faces lol but smash Raiden's more. He's got more power and henchmen. It is funny that you mentioned burning... heh-heh. Anyway, I think it'd be too nice for Raiden to die in a hole, then the vultures couldn't get to him, but the bugs and rats could so never mind. He'd still be feasted on! Is it bad that I can easily imagine that stuff happening in my mind right now? :)

annonymous: Thank you! I will! You're just as amazing!

Guest-Nov. 25: Thanks! Glad your mood was boosted!

Guest-Dec. 11: Thanks for reviewing! Updated it is!