So much had happened in the past twenty four hours, too much for Haruka to comprehend, and to be brutally honest, they were not hours that he wished to reflect upon. They had been filled with tears and worry, shouting and gasping, and he was glad that they were over, that silence had taken over in their place.

That the person at the center of his world was still there, sleeping soundly beside him.

He stared at Makoto closely, as if he would disappear back into the ocean if he took his eyes off of him at any given moment. His hand twitched at his side, eager to draw himself closer to his best friend, to close the space between them, but he held back, instead continuing to study his peaceful face.

Even after the emotional hell he had just gone through, Makoto still managed to put up the same perfectly serene front he always did. But Haruka knew better that to just accept his constant reassurances that he was all right. He knew that inside Makoto was still hurting, still terrified, still hoping that someone would pick up on his subtle signals and just help him.

Haruka himself was terrified, too, but it was different than Makoto's. Never had he considered the fact that he might be scared of water, of what it could do. He had always felt so relaxed and at ease when it came to the water, to being in it, and while he always knew what it could do - the power that the liquid possessed - he had never truly experienced the terror it could bring to a person until the night before.

Even if it had only been for a split second - when he had seen Makoto flailing helplessly in the ocean waves with Rei in tow it suddenly occurred to him that he could lose him - Haruka had felt that fear of water, of the possibility of something, someone so important being ripped away from him, and the feeling had lingered and he couldn't bear to be away from Makoto.

He now figured he understood the crippling fright Makoto had gone through when Haruka himself nearly drowned when they were twelve. He had felt his own heart seize up, his mind become frenzied, a certain numbness take over him at the thought that Makoto might leave his side - he could sympathize because he knew now, too, of the pain it caused.

Sighing heavily, Haruka turned to face Makoto again, scooting a minute distance closer. He cared far too much about Makoto to ever let something take him away, couldn't imagine an existence where they weren't together, and it was then that he silently vowed to protect him from anything that might bring about such fear again - he never wanted Makoto feel so powerless or terrified if he could help prevent it.

Absorbed in his thoughts, Haruka didn't realize as Makoto's green eyes fluttered open ever so slightly, peering at him from the little space between them. He was broken away from his line of thinking when a soft murmuring of his name entered his mind.


With a blink, Haruka looked at his friend, surprised by his awakening. "M-Makoto."

"What are you still doing up?" It was an innocent question. "You, too, have been through a lot in the past little bit. You should get some rest." There it was - that pure concern for everyone but himself, and Haruka felt his brow furrow, and after a few seconds of consideration, a question fell from his lips.

"Makoto," he began, voice low. "Are you okay?" Haruka wasn't looking for what Makoto claimed to be helpful lies - he wanted the truth, and if that involved tears or not, he didn't care, for he would be there for him.

Makoto didn't seem taken aback by the question, but more so curious. Haruka was never one to be so forward, so Makoto knew that he was serious as he could be in that moment. He weighed his options then - he could feign being emotionally steadied like he had been, even if Haru knew better, or he could tell him how he truly felt, and he knew that was what his friend wanted to hear. He trusted Haru more than anyone, could tell him anything, and so with a shaky sigh, he answered honestly for the first time since it had happened.

"No, I'm not." His eyes were downcast for a few moments, before flashing up to Haruka's. "But…" He reached down in search of Haru's hand, to hold it close and tight like he always did when they slept together like this… when he found it, he squeezed it in his grasp and continued, "I will be with you here, Haru." He felt a genuine smile curl on his lips then, and Haruka wondered if he imagined the speeding up of his heart at the action.

He gave a nod at that, a silent confirmation that he would be there for Makoto whenever he needed him, and finally he allowed himself to move closer, his familiar grip on Makoto's hand comforting him as he tightened it. He felt his eyes begin to grow heavy suddenly, and before he knew it, sleep was overtaking him, and the last thing he heard and felt before he drifted off was a warm set of lips pressing against his knuckles and a, "Thank you, Haru."

A contented smile formed on his features and then he was out, Makoto following suit into a comfortable slumber.