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Sing Your Heart Out To Me

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(Y/N)? Can you promise me something?” You look over at the figure next to you and smile, your eyes glimmering in the darkness.

“You know I will!” you promised, turning your ten year-old body towards your companion.

“Promise me that whatever happens, we’ll always be best friends,” she spoke, her eyes filled with hope. You reached your small hand over to grab hers, giving it a gentle squeeze.

“I promise.”

***

You sat up, covered in cold sweat, your heart racing and your breath short.

Just a dream, you thought, taking deep breaths to calm your heart. It’s just another dream. Glancing at your clock, you sighed. Instead of hoping for an hour or two more of sleep, you only had five minutes until the damn thing went off. Deciding to just get up, you turned off the clock and crawled out of your bed. The air was slightly chilly, but you found it comforting as it was unusually warm for the beginning of spring.

“Miss (Y/N)?” You glanced over to see your butler, Arnold, standing at the door. “Shall I prepare you some breakfast?”

“No, thank you,” you replied, fishing out a bra and underwear. Arnold shifted to his right foot.

“Are you sure, Miss? It’s your first day at the academy, you know,” he informed.

“I’m very aware of that,” you mumbled under your breath, staring at the clothing in your hands. “I’ll be fine with a slice of sourdough toast and butter with watermelon juice,” you said out loud. Arnold nodded and bowed, closing the door silently behind him as he retreated to the kitchen. Your mind buzzed with your recent dream as you walked into the bathroom to shower. With the air soon filled with steam, you stripped of your pajamas and stepped into the shower, a familiar yet foreign face burning before your very eyes. With a sigh, you washed your hair and body, taking your time before you had to leave.

***

The academy was certainly bigger than you anticipated. You shifted, feeling uncomfortable in the yellow school uniform. You never were one for dresses, and the thought that you’ll be wearing this terrible thing until you graduate sent a shiver of disgust down your spine. With a deep breath, you walked to the main entrance of the large school.

Inside, girls gossiped and boys talked about sports, everyone seemingly glowing and ignoring you, not that you minded. You were here to fulfill a dream that wasn’t even yours, and making friends seemed like a distraction. Besides, in your mind, it was you and them. You against the world. No one could ever understand you. The only person who could…

You shook your head. Now wasn’t the time to think about her.

Biting your lip, you glanced at a wrinkled piece of paper that held the schedule you were to follow until June. With the academy at least three stories tall, you were sure you’d get lost within ten feet. Hearing every girl in the direct vicinity gasp, you turned, only to see seven extremely attractive boys walking down the hall. With an eyebrow raised, you looked at the girls surrounding them.

Huh, they must be the popular kids, you thought, wrinkling your nose. You watched as the tall blonde in front lift some girl’s chin with his finger, getting so close he could kiss her. The others seemed to do the same, except for the short blonde kid. Was he even a high schooler? He looks like he’s five.

“Ah, good morning, Princess,” the tall blonde turned to you, a soft smile gracing his features. You bit the inside of your cheek and fought back the urge to roll your eyes. “You must be new here. What’s your name, Beautiful?”

“And why should I tell you?” you snapped, clenching your hands. The boy looked surprised, almost as if he expected you to melt to a puddle at his feet. You heard the girls murmuring around you, but frankly, you don’t give a shit.

“Well,” he said, composing himself and hiding his shock with a smile, “I’d like to know the name of the beautiful maiden standing before me. Is that such a bad thing?” You snorted, narrowing your (E/C) eyes at him.

“Yes, because you’re bothering me.”

“Boss,” a ginger said, somehow next to the first boy.

“Let us handle this,” another ginger finished. You instantly realized that these gingers were twins, a scowl adorning your face. The first twin, Thing Number 1, you decided to call him, smiled slyly at you, moving to your side.

“You’re new here, aren’t you?” he purred, wrapping an arm around your shoulder. You tensed, feeling your face turn red with anger.

“Either you get your arm from around my shoulder, or you’ll have a broken arm and all your teeth will be knocked out of your skull,” you hissed, turning to glare at him. Thing Number 1 blinked before moving his arm. “Let me get this straight with you idiodic assmunches. I’m not here to be flirted with man-whores, and I especially don’t want anything to do with twins,” you spat. The hall was silent as everyone stared at you. You hadn’t felt this amount of attention since…

Before you could finish your thought, you shoved through the crowd, storming off to find your first class. Every student backed away, murmuring rude things about you as you walked off. Not that you care, though. You planned to spend the rest of your high school career alone.

It’s you against the world.

Your first few classes were a breeze. When the teacher introduced you, you gave a false name.

“Leila.”

The teacher would nod and point to your seat, to which you silently took. They found that as a second year, you were incredibly smart and ready to learn, but you preferred to keep your distance. Your health teacher would describe it as you ‘avoiding everyone as if they had the plague.’

Of course, you didn’t mind. You knew what you were here for, and nothing will change that.

As you avoided everyone, everyone avoided you. You heard their whispers behind your back. You felt every glare and curious look that was thrown your way. No one attempted to talk to you, nor did you attempt to talk to anyone. Three of the seven boys were in your class, and that was something that bugged you greatly. You felt their eyes on you throughout the morning, though it was tempting, you didn’t stare back. The twins, you noticed, whispered to each other as they watched you.

You stared straight ahead.

It wasn’t long before the bell rang for lunch. Instead of following everyone out the door, you remained seated, staring at your folded hands. You thought of all the classwork and homework you had to catch up on, but it wouldn’t be a problem. You thought of the teachers. They were nice enough, you concluded. Your classmates? You could care less.

“Excuse me?” You looked up to see one of the seven males standing in front of your desk. You frowned.

“May I help you?” you responded coldly. The male didn’t even blink.

“My name’s Haruhi. Would you like to eat lunch with me and my friends?” Haruhi asked. Your frown deepened.

“And why would I do that?”

“Well, you look like you could use a friend. My other friends wouldn’t mind you sitting with us at all. Just ignore their flirting,” he asked. You studied him for a moment before standing.

“Just this one time, got it?” Haruhi cracked a small smile.

“I don’t think you’ll have lunch with us just once. Come on. We eat in Music Room 3.” You wordlessly gathered your belongings and followed Haruhi. Girls stared at you both, gawking at the sight of you, a new nobody, with one of the most handsome guys in the academy. You rolled your eyes, half heartedly listening to him as he talked about his friends and some club he’s in. In all honestly, you could care less about whatever club he’s talking about.

“Ah, there you are, Haru-chan,” a tall male with dark hair and glasses spoke. “Is this the same girl from earlier?” You felt his cold eyes examine you as the room grew silent. Still, you kept your chin up.

“Yes. This is Leila. Leila, this is Kyoya-sempai,” Haruhi introduced. Kyoya stood and bowed slightly, the girls in the room going wild. You only scoffed.

“What a pleasure to meet you,” Kyoya said, straightening. You pursed your lips, noticing the other ‘club members’ walking over to meet you.

“Since everyone’s here, let me introduce you,” Haruhi said. He gestured to each member. “That tall blonde is Tamaki, the short blonde is Honey, the tall ravenette is Mori, and the twins are Kaoru and Hikaru. As I was saying, we’re the Host Club.” You looked at Haruhi, frowning.

“A host club,” you deadpanned. “You can’t be serious.”

“I’m afraid we are, beautiful maiden,” Tamaki said dramatically. Rose petals seemed to float from around him. “We are a club dedicated to making girls happy and-”

“Where’d the rose petals come from?” you murmured to Haruhi as Tamaki blabbered on, striking dramatic poses. Haruhi sighed.

“I’ve been wondering that since the day I joined,” he mumbled back. You nodded slightly, watching the blonde, clearly unimpressed.

“And that is why we are known as the Host Club!” Tamaki finished, huffing proudly.

“Are you done yet?” you asked. Tamaki’s confidence seemed to deflate as he stared at you. “I’m not here for the weird club thing you have going on here. Haruhi only invited me for lunch.” You watched, confused, as Tamaki sulked in a corner. “What’s his problem?”

“Boss is just over dramatic,” one of the twins said. You noticed he had a soft voice, and his hair was parted to the left.

“So don’t mind him. This happens all the time, especially with Haruhi,” the other said. His voice was deeper, and his hair was parted to the right. You made sure to make a mental note of that. Twins liked to be identified correctly, even if they acted like they didn’t. Haruhi shot them a glare.

“Can you two please knock it off? I’m trying to make her comfortable.” A small tug on your dress caught your attention.

Oh, you thought. It’s the man baby thing.

“What’s your name?” Honey asked, blinking up at you with large brown eyes. Once more, you felt everyone’s eyes on you. Even Tamaki paused his sulking to look over at you.

What is with this school and staring at people?

“Leila (L/N),” you replied, sounding bored. “May I go eat my lunch in peace, now?” Without waiting for a response, you walked over to the corner of the room, sitting on the window sill to enjoy a small lunch packed by Arnold. You pulled out your homework and began working on it as you ate, unaware of the Host Club members watching you closely.

“She doesn’t like people, does she?” Honey said after a moment of silence. Mori nodded.

“It surely seems that way, doesn’t it?” he said.

“Is it just me, or does she seem to hate us?” the twins asked in unison.

“Maybe she has a thing against twins?” Tamaki suggested, shrugging his shoulders.

“No, I don’t think that’s it,” Haruhi said, tilting her head. “Perhaps you both went on her too strong. She is new here, you know.” Kyoya stayed silent, the gears in his head turning.

“Leila (L/N)...” he mumbled after a few moments, gaining the attention of his fellow club members. “I feel as if I’ve heard that name before.”

“Really? Where?” Haruhi asked. The genius looked down at the girl, his expression unreadable.

“Just somewhere. I’ll look in on it right away.” He looked up at you with a frown. “Though, I don’t have a good feeling about her.”

“How come?” the twins asked once more. Kyoya pushed up his glasses and turned away, his laptop under his arm.

“I just do.”

Chapter Text

”(Y-Y/N)! Help!” You spun your head around, your hair flying and your eyes wide. She was laying on the ground, blood pooling around her. You quickly noticed the gash on her forehead, her left leg bent at an odd angle. Fear overwhelmed you as you ran down the hill to get to her, careful to not catch your foot on a root.
 
“I’m right here!” you cried, falling to your knees before her. She was bleeding badly, and you just knew you had to get help. The only other option was to attempt to drag her back to town, but you knew that would only make problems worse. She was likely to bleed out if you did that. “I-I’m going to go get help!” She protested as you stood, running back up the hill and onto the trail you both were previously following. You sped down the way you came, back into town. Upon seeing the townspeople, you screamed for their attention.
 
“Why is that girl screaming?” a woman asked. A young male, no older than twelve, turned, recognizing you immediately.
 
“Mutti, that’s (Y/N). She’s in my class,” he said, his eyes wide. You ran up to them, heaving and gasping for breath. “(Y/N), what’s wrong?”
 
“Th-there’s been an accident,” you huffed, hands on your knees. “We need the ambulance!”
 
Time seemed to fast-forward as the ambulance was called. You had led them the way, only to find her unconscious from blood loss. A polizist walked up to your shaking form, kneeling down to you.
 
“Miss (L/N), do you mind telling me what happened here?” he asked, his blue eyes softening as he studied you. You took a shaking breath.

“W-We were having a picnic down by the pond, but we forgot a blanket. We went to go get it when she yelled,” you said, doing your best to stay composed. The officer nodded, silently urging you to continue. “When I looked back, she was on the ground and bleeding. I-I think she tripped on a root or something.” When the officer stood, you looked up at him. His brown moustache curled up in a smile.
 
“Well, young one, you were very brave to come get help. Now, Officer Weber will be taking down your name and address, just so we can inform your parents of your little misadventure.” You nodded and gave your information, soon going with your parents to the hospital to visit her.
 
She wasn’t entirely the same after that.
 
***

The bell rang for class, ripping you out of your daydream. Surprisingly enough, no one came to bother you, and the Host Club members seemed to forget you were there, too busy wooing other girls. Standing, you wrapped what you didn’t eat and placed it back into your bag. You knew Arnold was going to have a fit, seeing as you had only eaten a bite or two, but you knew you were to remind him that even a few bites were a huge accomplishment.
 
“Baby steps,” you had told him. He had frowned, but saw no other choice but to let you eat as much as you could stomach. You were lucky to be eating at all. The past month was a living hell.
 
“Kon’nichiwa, Leila-chan,” Haruhi said, suddenly appearing next to you. You jumped, not seeing him as he appeared. “I’m sorry for startling you. How was your lunch?”
 
“It was…” you trailed off, realizing that you didn’t as much as taste what you had eaten. Arnold was sure to give you an earful about that as well. He was very prideful in his cooking. You shrugged. “It was alright, I guess.” The male nodded slightly, staring ahead. Narrowing your eyes slightly, you studied him. He had girlish features, you noticed. His eyelashes were long for a male, and with just a once-over, you could tell he had a petite body. He glanced over at you, eyebrow raised.
 
“Is everything alright?” Haruhi asked. You blinked and looked up at him.
 
“Can I ask you something?” The Host nodded, looking curious. “Are you a girl?” The words were out of your mouth before you could even register them. It was times like these where you cursed your bluntness. She always poked fun at you for it. She was never as blunt as you are. You mentally scoffed at yourself. Instead of looking offended like you thought Haruhi’d be, he smiled.
 
“I don’t really care if I’m a girl or a boy, but yes, I am,” he-no, she, answered. You shrugged, mumbling a small, ‘cool’ to her. Blunt, but accepting. People thought that was a nice quality. “I'm sorry I didn’t spend my lunch with you, but I’m glad you came to the club.”
 
“It’s no problem,” you replied, keeping your responses short. You momentarily forgot that you weren’t here to make friends.
 
“So, why’d you come to this school?” Does Haruhi ever shut up? No, wait. Bad, (Y/N). Be nice.
 
“To work towards owning my own fashion industry,” you said. Haruhi nodded, a small smile on her face.
 
“You know, you can always ask the twins for help if you need it. Their mom’s some famous fashion designer, and I’m sure the Hitachiin family will be more than willing to help you,” Haruhi offered. You crinkled your nose in disgust at ‘twins.’
 
“Erm, no thanks. I have some...friends, you could say, that’re already helping me. I appreciate the offer, though.” And you did. You don’t know a damn thing about Haruhi, and yet here she was, offering help to some stranger she just met. You wouldn’t consider her your friend, but perhaps an acquaintance. There was no time in your schedule for friends. Besides, you knew from past experiences that any friends you had would leave without sparing you a second glance.
 
“No problem. Just wanted to let you know,” Haruhi smiled. You felt a smile threaten to tug a your lips. “By the way, Kyoya-sempai’s curious about you, saying you looked familiar to him.” Your stomach dropped as a cold sweat seemed to embrace you. You felt like your heart had stopped.
 
No, you thought, your eyes wide. He can’t know. If he knows, if anyone knew, my life’s over. Might as well say goodbye to Arnold. Bye Mom, bye Dad. Thanks for giving me life.
 
“Leila, are you okay?” your companion asked, raising an eyebrow in your direction. You looked at her, your face pale and your hands shaking.
 
“I’m fine,” you quickly replied. Without another word, you sped to your next class, unaware of the dark eyes following your figure.
 
***
 
“Ah, good afternoon, Miss (Y/N). How was your first day at Ouran Academy?” Arnold greeted, taking your school bag.
 
“I think someone’s going to figure me out,” you whispered, clenching your dress. Arnold looked surprised.
 
“Already? It’s only been a day!” he exclaimed. You nodded grimly, your hands still shaking. You hadn’t said another word to Haruhi since she dropped the bomb, and you honestly felt a little bad for it. However, your safety was, as selfish as it sounds, more important. “Well, aside from that, how are your classes?”
 
“They were fine. I like my teachers,” you said, letting yourself smile a little. You were thankful you had your butler-turned-best friend. He always seemed to know how to get your mind off things, even if it were for a moment. In all honesty, he was more of a grandfather to you. You were ninety-nine percent sure that he thought of you as his granddaughter. Afterall, he had been around for most of you life.
 
“That sounds wonderful! Have you made any friends?” You sighed, sitting on a counter in the kitchen. This was your favorite place to be while talking to Arnold. Ever since you were little, he’d let you help in the kitchen and teach you different recipes.
 
“Not really, but I was practically dragged into the Host Club.” Arnold paused whilst gathering ingredients to make a light snack, looking over at you. You put your hands up in surrender. “It was only because this chick, Haruhi, wanted me to eat with them so I wouldn’t be alone,” you explained. The butler relaxed visibly, continuing his task.
 
“I see,” he replied. You nodded, watching him. The silence was comfortable, just as it always is when you hung out with him. He grabbed a knife and began slicing strawberries, his tongue poking out from between his lips. You studied him. His gray moustache was neatly trimmed and gelled, his salt and pepper hair slicked back. His rough hands were gently holding onto the sweet fruits, his sleeves rolled to his elbows. He was considered one of those ‘hot grandpas,’ though he didn’t have any grandchildren. Your nose wrinkled at the thought of teenage girls and young ladies ogling over him. He was nothing more than family to you, so seeing him in a different light sickened you.
 
“Making a parfait?” you asked. Arnold looked up at you and smiled.
 
“Your favorite,” was his response. More silence. “(Y/N), are you up for playing the piano or guitar yet? If you’re not ready, I’m not going to force you to play.” Your body stiffened, memories that you were failing at keeping below the surface threatening to take over your mind.
 
“So soon,” you whispered, Arnold pausing in his actions. You held your head in your hands, your shoulders shaking. “It’s so soon. I don’t think I’m ready. It’ll only bring up memories of her.” Warm arms engulfed you, holding you close to a strong chest.
 
“Why don’t you go upstairs for a nap? I’ll wake you when the parfait’s ready. Would you care for schnitzel tonight? With mashed potatoes and corn?” You nodded, pulling away from your butler’s embrace.
 
“That sounds good,” you agreed. Arnold smiled and helped you off the counter, ushering you out of the kitchen. Your legs were on autopilot as they walked you up the stairs, but instead of going to your room, you stopped at a closed door.
 
The music room.
 
It had been a month since you had entered any music room of any sort, feeling as if you’ll disgrace her name. With a sigh, you turned the knob and entered.
 
Three guitars hung on the wall, a keyboard under the window. A drumset was off to the side, and a recording mic near a small recording room. Multiple other instruments sat around, including a glass grand piano, each and every one of them collecting dust. It had been too long, but too soon. Glancing at the piano, you walked to it, sitting down on the bench that accompanied it. You pressed a few keys, relief washing over you to hear it was still in tune. A book of sheet music lay open, a familiar song just begging to be played. You took a deep breath.
 
And you played.
 
I heard there was a secret chord,
That David played and it pleased the Lord,
But you don’t really care for music, do you?
Well it goes like this:
The fourth, the fifth, the minor fall and the major lift,
The baffled king composing Hallelujah.
 
Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah.
 
You smiled at the familiarity of the song, and the feeling that washed over you as your fingertips brushed the keys, a sweet melody echoing throughout the room.
 
Well your faith was strong but you needed proof,
You saw her bathing on the roof.
Her beauty in the moonlight overthrew ya.
She tied you to her kitchen chair,
She broke your throne and she cut your hair,
And from your lips she drew the Hallelujah.
 
Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah.
 
Arnold stood just outside of the music room. His green eyes filled with tears as he listened. You had never sounded so broken, but it was understandable. Your life had taken a terrible turn for the worst, and if he were completely honest with himself, he didn’t expect you to touch another musical instrument, much less sing again. He said nothing and listened on, tears slipping down his cheeks.
 
Baby, I’ve been here before.
I know this room and I’ve walked this floor.
You know I used to live alone before I knew ya.
And I’ve seen your flag on the marble arch,
And love is not a victory march!
It’s a cold and it’s a broken Hallelujah!
 
Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah.
 
Two sets of ember eyes rose to the sky, confusion mirroring between the Hitachiin Twins. Hikaru and Kaoru glanced at each other, both wondering where the music was coming from. The faint voice they heard was filled with grief, yet as sad as it sounded, it was beautiful. It was nothing like they had heard before, filled with such raw emotion. They both felt completely alone throughout their childhood and early teens, and though they hid those emotions since joining the Host Club, all those years spent against the world came rushing back to them with this one song. Kaoru slipped his hand into his twin’s, desperately needing the comfort. Hikaru squeezed his hand, understanding what his other half needed. In this cruel and dark world, they only had each other to truly rely on.
 
There was a time when you let me know,
What’s really going on below,
But now you never show that to me, do ya?
But I remember when I moved in you,
And the holy dove was moving too,
And every breath we drew was Hallelujah.
 
Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah.
 
Tamaki paused his conversation with Mori and Honey, hearing the music. His companions paused as well, listening for the tune. They looked for where the music was coming from, only to see a manor a ways away. Their stroll to Haruhi’s home was cut short as they listened.
 
Haruhi opened her door, humming along to the melody. She waved to the boys, a sad smile adorning her face as she thought about her mom. Her death anniversary was approaching, and this song was slowly breaking down the wall she fought so hard to keep up. Eleven years, and the pain was still tearing her up inside. Tamaki instantly jogged to her upon seeing the sadness and grief in her smile, pulling her into a strong embrace. Mori and Honey watched the scene, lost in their own thoughts as they listened to the music.
 
Maybe there’s a God above,
But all I’ve ever learned from love,
Was how to shoot somebody who outdrew ya.
And it’s not a cry that you hear at night,
it’s not somebody who’s seen the light,
It’s a cold and it’s a broken Hallelujah!
Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelu-
Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Halleluuuuuujaaaaaaah!
 
Kyoya looked up from his laptop, his dark brown eyes peering out the open window. He recognized the voice easily, but said nothing. With a silent sigh, he turned back to his laptop, a picture of two girls on the screen. They were grinning largely at the camera, one with her arms around the other’s neck and shoulders. The ravenette stared at them, his eyes narrowed. He clicked open another tab, inserted a few words, and clicked on the most trustworthy news site. His eyes scanned the article, pressing his lips into a fine line. A small, ‘hmph,’ sound escaped his lips as he closed his laptop. Kyoya was right after all, and he couldn’t wait for everyone to know.
 
Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah…
 
You finished the song in a whisper, staring down at the keys. It had been too long, way too long.
 
“Miss (L/N)?” You looked over to see Arnold smiling sadly, holding a tray of parfaits. You returned the sad smile, ignoring the wetness on your cheeks. He wordlessly offered you a cup, to which you accepted.
 
“Thank you,” you whispered, looking down at the delicious delicacy. Well, it was a delicacy to you, simply because it was your favorite. Arnold gestured you to follow him. Standing, you followed the gentleman to the lounging room, where he had set up a simple game of Uno. You sat on a couch, picking up your cards. Two blues, a green, three reds, and a plus-four wildcard. You had a pretty good hand, you concluded. Arnold sat across from you, examining his own hand. You could tell by the twitch on his lips that he, too, had a good hand. This would be interesting.
 
“You played beautifully, as always,” he said, not looking at you. He drew a card from the pile to start the game, revealing a yellow. Well, shit.
 
“Thanks. I’m a bit rusty,” you replied, taking a bite of your parfait. A smile graced your lips at the taste, but it fell into a deep frown when Arnold put down another yellow. You weren’t about to use your wildcard, so you drew a few cards until you reached a yellow or the same number. Your hand of seven was now a hand of thirteen.
 
“I agree, but all you need to do is get back into practice. If you’re up for it, we can start practicing everyday for an hour. Of course, you don’t have to. Just tell me when you’re ready, and we’ll go back to your old schedule.” You nodded, watching him put down another card. You thought about his offer, placing down cards and drawing them whenever your turn came around.
 
"Just give me a little more time, and I'll be back to practice. Two months, I promise," you told him. Arnold nodded, knowing that you needed your time. He wasn't going to force you to play if you weren't ready.
 
 
“Uno!” Arnold cried out, laughing as your groaned. He had one card left, and you had two. You mentally smirked, eyeing your plus-four card and your last blue card. He had accidentally revealed the color of his card, which was red.
 
“Not so fast,” you said, placing down your wildcard. Arnold’s eyes widened in shock. “I choose blue, and boom, I win.” It was silent for a moment before the both of you laughed.
 
“Good game,” Arnold complemented, patting your head. You smiled and shuffled the cards once more.
 
“One more round?” Arnold nodded, putting the dirty dishes in the kitchen sink before returning. For the first time in a month, your upside-down world was finally returning to its place, but deep down, you knew a shitstorm would be hitting you soon.
 
And that was something you weren’t prepared for.

Chapter Text

The water felt so nice and cool against your legs. It was surprisingly hot today, reaching almost one hundred degrees. You couldn’t remember the last time it got this hot, especially considering that Germany was one of the cooler countries. At most, it was at least eighty-nine or ninety degrees.

“Man, this blows,” the girl next to you said, kicking her bare legs. You watched her lazily, noticing the purple paint on her toenails was beginning to chip off.

“Tell me about it,” you responded glumly. Your parents kicked you out of the house to enjoy the sun, but all you wanted to do was stay inside your air-conditioned home and watch horror movies while munching on popcorn or eating some ice cream.

The two of you were seated at the edge of a lake, hoping to stay cool in the shade. The shade, it seemed, turned against you, offering you little protection against the sun’s burning rays. The wind wasn’t present, which made the hot day seem even hotter.

“I don’t even want to do anything,” you grumbled, leaning back against a large oak tree. The girl next to you did the same.

“Me neither, but anything sounds better than just sitting here.” You nodded in response. The ice cream trucks weren’t running, due to the fact that every child in the area wanted ice cream. That left very little for the older generations, and it sucked that the driver was able to swipe some for himself. You knew this because as he drove past you, he was eating a fudgesicle. That lucky bastard.

“I almost hate to say this, but wanna go explore?” The girl next to you lifted one shoulder lazily, letting it drop.

“I guess so,” she responded. With a groan, you both stood and stretched. You both knew the area like the back of your hand, but there were more lakes to explore. You thanked whatever god may be out there for the luxury of lakes.

“C’mon, Twinkletoes. There’s a lake I wanna check out,” you said, stretching your arms over your head. Your companion gave you a half-hearted glare.

“I told you, that was one time,” she said, annoyance in her voice. You gave her a cheeky grin.

“What, when you poured glitter glue all over your toes and ran buck-ass naked down the street?”

“I was five!”

“And I was laughing!” Twinkletoes punched you in the arm. “Owwwww,” you complained, holding your arm. She gave you another glare.

“I’m going to get back at you,” she warned. You rolled your eyes and hopped onto your (F/C) bike.

“Yeah, whatever.” The two of you rode across town, not surprised to see the local gelato parlor overflowing with customers. “Aw, damn,” you complained, coming to a stop. Twinkletoes did the same, frowning over at the parlor. “I wanted a cup of (F/F).”

“Honestly, that sounds super good right now,” she agreed. With a last longing look at the parlor, the two of you continued your ride until you reached the outskirts of town. People rarely went here due to the density of the forest, but you found you didn’t mind. The heavily wooded area provided a refreshing amount of shade, to which you sighed in relief to. Twinkletoes sighed as well, stopping her bike to pull up her hair.

“It feels so nice here,” you said, embracing the shade. Twinkletoes nodded, her eyes closed in bliss. “We have like a mile left to go, so might as well head over now.” You both began pedalling, carefully avoiding any roots or branches in your way. You had an idea of where this mystery lake was, though you weren’t too sure if people actually used it. “Almost there!” you called.

“Okay!” Within minutes, you both arrived at the lake. The water was crystal clear, and boy did it look relaxing. You both examined the area, eyes wide and mouths hanging open. It was obvious that no one came here, seeing how overgrown the brush and shrubbery were. Catching sight of something man-made, you squinted your eyes.

“Hey, there’s something over there,” you said, pointing to the object. Twinkletoes squinted her eyes as well, leaning forward to get a better look. She nodded when she caught sight of it, and you wordlessly followed her to whatever it was. When you finally got there, you discovered it was some old boat house.

“What the hell?” you said in unison. The boat house was old, the wood rotting and the red paint on the roof fading away. It was as big as a small convenient store, the doors appearing as if they were stuck in place. You hopped off your bike and leaned it against a tree, going up to the old building. You craned your head back to observe it completely. It was windowless, but beautiful. You grinned.

“You thinking what I’m thinking?” you asked, not looking at your companion. You knew she knew.

“Turn this place into our private getaway?” she said. You heard her get off her bike.

”Richtig,” you said with a smirk.

“Seems like a helluva summer project,” Twinkletoes stated, standing next to you. She crossed her arms, examining the boat house. “Think we can handle it?”

“Hell yeah,” you responded immediately, looking over at her. “We have all summer to fix this place up. It doesn’t take long to get here, and when we get it done, this can be our getaway. Our escape from reality.”

“And people,” she added.

“And people,” you agreed. You both looked up at the building.

“You know,” Twinkletoes said after a moment of thinking. You hummed to inform her that you were listening. “We’re going to need a lot of paint, lumber, nails, and bandaids. Maybe a few tweezers.”

“Don’t forget about chairs and books and solar lamps,” you said. You could tell Twinkletoes was forming a mental list.

“Maybe get a fridge or something in here. Should we risk any instruments?” she asked, glancing at you. You made a face and shook your head.

“Nah. This is our private getaway, remember? I don’t want any of that shit here. It’ll ruin my mood.” Twinkletoes nodded, returning her gaze to the building.

“Fair enough,” she mumbled, mentally calculating how much the materials would cost. “Should we get started?” You looked at her and grinned.

“Hell yeah.”

***

“Oh my god, I’m going to smash that thing with a fucking hammer,” you grumbled, reaching over to turn off your alarm clock. It screamed at you to wake up, and just your luck, it didn’t have a snooze button. You were always raised to get to your destination on time, and though your parents weren’t present in your household due to the current circumstances, you were still held to those standards. Arnold made sure of that.

“Miss (L/N), time to get ready for school.” Speaking of the Devil. You groaned, covering your head with your blanket. You heard Arnold sigh before his footsteps grew closer. “Miss (L/N), I must insist you wake up,” he said, a warning in his voice.

“No,” you argued childishly. Yes, childishly. You were a high schooler and acting like a child. This was a trait you never grew out of. Yes, you hid it, but with Arnold, you didn’t hold back. It annoyed him greatly, but offered you amusement.

“Alright, have it your way,” Arnold grumbled. He gripped the edge of the blanket and tore it clean off your bed and your body. You yelped, covering your body with a pillow. It was extremely cold in your room, and your pajamas, comfy as they were, weren’t helping. Fleece couldn’t always save you from the cold, you discovered.

“But I don’t wanna go to school! I’m being found out!” you whined, hiding under the pillow, only to have it ripped away from you. You peered at Arnold, who stood with his arms crossed and your beloved pillow in one hand and your warm blanket in the other. You weakly glared at him, to which he gladly returned the action.

“It’s not going to help if you don’t show up,” he said. As always, he was right. “And today, you better eat your lunch. Your health is greatly suffering from lack of nutrients.”

“I know,” you mumbled, unwillingly sitting up in bed. You glanced at the window. Dark gray clouds blanketed the sky. Instead of frowning and moping about the weather, you found yourself waking up a little more. Dark clouds meant rain, and rain meant not going outside to - ugh, must you even think it? - socialize.

“You have twenty minutes to dress and come downstairs. Your refill of pills came in, so you’re going to take that with some applesauce. Then, you - don’t give me that look, young lady - you are to get in the car and I will have Seth drive you to school. At lunch, you will text me a picture of how much you ate so I can be sure that you’re properly eating. No ifs, ands, or buts. When you return home, you will have your afternoon snack, do your homework, join me for dinner, and you will have free time,” Arnold blabbered on. You blinked lazily at him, fighting back yawns.

“How many parenting books have you been reading?” you asked once he was finished. Your butler frowned lightly at you.

“Why would do you ask-”

“Because I know how you are,” you interrupted, finally getting out of bed. He sighed, pinching the bridge of his nose. “You know, teenagers aren’t that hard to manage. Just gimme something to do and I’ll be fine.”

“Will you at least eat your lunch?” he questioned, politely looking away as you searched for a clean school uniform. In all honesty, he hated that shade of yellow, but felt somewhat amused to see you in it. It was as if your pain entertained him.

“No promises that I’ll eat all of it, but I’ll try to eat more than a few bites,” you said, walking into the bathroom. You closed the door behind you, feeling your stomach tighten in knots at the sound of food. Though your stomach was extremely hungry and eager for the nutrients, you just...you just didn’t feel hungry. Arnold sighed.

“Anything is better than nothing, I suppose,” he mumbled. “I will prepare your pills and a raincoat and umbrella. It’s supposed to rain today.” You made a hummed, thinking about what you should do in your free time after school. Should you read a book on one of the balconies, or should you watch a new horror movie?

You quickly prepared yourself physically for school, mentally dreading the events to come. It would be a smart move, and certainly safer, to avoid that Kyoya guy. Who knows who he was associated with? You shivered, silently chiding yourself to not think about that. It would put you in a bad mood, and today was a day for you to relax.

In no time, you were at the school. You had nearly vomited eating the applesauce, which left a disgusting taste in your mouth. It wasn’t that you didn’t like applesauce, because you absolutely loved it, but it was because you couldn’t stomach much of anything.

Your classes went by quickly, as usual. Your teachers were pleased to find that you had completed half of the missing assignments, including yesterday’s homework, with no problem. When you told them you were willing to do the missing assignments, they were wary that you weren’t able to finish them, but you proved them wrong. You liked keeping up with the class, even if it meant doing the unnecessary work. Lunch was here by no time, and once again, you found Haruhi standing before your desk. However, instead of staring off into space, you were sketching your boat house on a blank paper in your sketchbook.

“Are you coming to lunch?” You jumped, not expecting Haruhi to be standing before you. You watched her for a second.

“Are you sure it’s okay with the rest of your club?” you questioned, not moving an inch. Haruhi smiled at you.

“I’m sure it’s completely fine with them. They’re curious about you, you know,” she informed, waiting patiently as you gathered your sketchbook and lunch bag. You stilled momentarily at her words before taking a deep breath.

They’re only curious because you’re new, you told yourself. Only because you’re not falling victim to their pretty rich boy game.

“Okay,” you muttered. Haruhi watched you momentarily.

“You’re more of an introvert, aren’t you?” she questioned. You nodded, walking out the door with her. You were always like this, though you had gotten worse recently due to events you hate thinking about. “No worries. I talked to the guys, and they agreed to back off, at least for a while.”

“Thank you,” you replied, grateful for her. She smiled at you.

“Anything for a friend,” she replied, leading you to Music Room Three. Wait, what? Friend? No, no, no. You were not friends, no matter if you wanted friends or not. Not only did you have absolutely no time for friends, it was dangerous. Past events were proof of that. Deep down, however, you longed for a friend. You wanted someone other than Arnold to keep you company. Maybe find someone to have those things, what were they called? Sleepovers? You’ve never had one of those. At least, not recently. Back when you had a handful of friends, you’d have something like them, but not anymore. It was more like your friends refusing to leave your house and damn near forcing you to hide up in your room.

“Friend? You consider me a friend?” you asked, looking over at her. Haruhi raised an eyebrow at you and nodded.

“Well, yeah. You look like you need one, so here I am.” A smile forced its way across your lips. Maybe, just maybe, you could work at having a friend, but you’ll keep the dangers in mind. “The Club isn’t in business today, so we’re free to just chat with the members. If any of them starts giving you trouble, I swear I’ll stop them,” Haruhi promised.

“Oh, okay. Thanks, I guess,” you said, nervousness beginning to eat at you. What would they think of you? Would Kyoya or the twins do anything?

Haruhi opened the door, only for a white light to blind you both as red rose petals fell around you.

“We welcome you to our world of beauty,” a voice purred. Once you could see again, you noticed it was Tamaki who had spoken. He was seated in a nice chair, the other Club members surrounding him. The twins, for whatever reason, were gazing lovingly into each other's eyes as they held hands. You scrunched your face, knowing that most of the girls that attended the academy loved the twin….incest...twincest. Yeah, that’s the word. But honestly, it grossed you out.

“Really, guys?!” Haruhi exclaimed, rubbing at her eyes. When her vision returned, she glared at the males. “We’re not even open today!”

“O-Oh, sorry, Haru-chan,” Tamaki apologized, instantly standing. He looked sheepish as he rubbed the back of his neck. Haruhi only stared at him, her face expressionless whilst her eyes were full of annoyance and exhaustion. You hid your amused smirk, struggling to keep a straight face. It was clear Tamaki liked Haruhi, and judging the look the twins shared, they had a thing for her, too. It made you wonder how they could stand to be in a host club with that crush of theirs. Maybe they hid their feelings for the girls? Yeah, that was probably it. You glanced around the large room, noticing that Kyoya watching you with narrowed eyes. No one else seemed to realize it, but honestly, it was beginning to freak you out.

He knows. He fucking knows, you thought, feeling all blood escape your cheeks.

“Are you okay, Leila-chan?” Honey asks, suddenly beside you. You jumped mile in the air, letting out a yelp. Honey only smiled innocently at you, his light brown eyes soft.

“Yeah, I’m fine,” you responded, looking at Kyoya out of the corner of your eye. His eyes had never left you, a frown settling on his face. You gulped.

“Do you want to come eat some cake with me?” You shrugged slightly.

“I could try. I don’t eat very much,” you replied.

“And why is that?” a deep voice asked. You froze, realizing it was Kyoya whom had spoken. With a deep breath, you turned to him.

“For health reasons, I can only eat six small meals a day,” you explained, looking Kyoya in the eye. All chatter ceased as the Club turned their attention to you. “Not only that, but I can only eat certain foods my butler prepares. My body only allows me to eat certain foods without feeling extremely nauseous.” Well, that wasn’t completely a lie. You just couldn’t eat any form of seafood and very spicy foods. Kyoya hummed, opening the little black book of his and scribbling something down.

“I’m not sure I completely believe you, Leila-chan,” he said, his voice cold. Your (E/C) eyes narrowed.

“Are you calling me a liar? That’s rich, especially since you don’t know a single thing about me,” you snarled. If this were an anime or manga, you were sure you’d have steam exiting your ears and little red, pointy horns poking at the top of your head. Kyoya smiled, and it was clear it wasn’t friendly.

“Keep thinking that, darling.” You watched as he closed his book and walked towards the door. He turned to you, that shit-eating smile on his face. “I look forward to talking to you more,” he purred darkly. With that, he walked out of the room. You huffed, clenching your hands.

“Hey, Leila-chan. What was that about?” Honey asked, looking up at you. You rolled your shoulders, hoping to relieve some of the tension.

“That guy’s just being a dick,” you spat.

“Proper ladies do not swear-” Tamaki started.

“I don’t give a rat’s ass. I’m not going to let some asshole go around and say that I’m a liar.” Haruhi put a hand on your shoulder, and you instantly relaxed. Yeah, you could see her being a good friend.

“Huh, you’re a little spitfire, aren’t you?” Kaoru spoke up, placing a finger on his chin in mock thought.

“She’ll be quite a challenge to woo, won’t she, Kaoru?” Hikaru asked, looking at his twin. You shot them a nasty look, to which the responded with angelic expressions.

“Knock it off, you two,” Haruhi scolded. “She obviously doesn’t want anything to do with that kind of crap, so just stop.” The twins looked down and nodded, their shoulders slumping. You, on the other hand, stared at Haruhi.

“Thanks,” you said, honestly surprised. She smiled and nodded.

“Lunch will be over soon,” Mori’s quiet voice informed.

Shit, I haven’t eaten a thing! you thought, feeling your heart skip a beat. Maybe you could make up some excuse on why you couldn’t eat? Some jerk-face took your lunch? You had to take an important test?

“Man, this sucks,” Hikaru groaned.

“Yeah, we wanted to spend more time with the new chick,” Kaoru added. The rest of the club nodded in agreement, adding their own regrets into the mix. You watched them, blinking.

“We could all hang out at my house?” you offered. All chatter stopped as six pairs of eyes landed on you. You suddenly felt very small and very self conscious.

“Are you serious?” Tamaki asked. You lifted a shoulder and let it fall in a weak shrug.

“Well, yeah. I’ll have to let Arnold know so he could make some snacks or something.”

“Who’s Arnold?” Haruhi asked. You shrunk into yourself a little bit.

“He’s my butler,” you replied.

“Can he make a cake?” Honey immediately asked. You nodded.

“He makes a really good German chocolate cake. Everything’s handmade, too.” ‘Excited’ didn’t even get close to the expression on Honey’s face. He seemingly glowed upon hearing about the cake.

“Looks like we’re going to Leila-chan’s house,” Tamaki said, smiling softly at you. “We will meet at the fountain after school, alright?” You nodded and headed back to class with Haruhi and the twins, listening to the three of them bicker.

The moment you met with them at the fountain, you instantly regretted your decision.

***

“Oh my god, your house is so nice!” Honey exclaimed as everyone walked in. The Host Club, excluding Kyoya, for whatever reason, looked around the foyer of your mansion.

“This is nothing compared to the house I had back in Germany,” you replied, placing your raincoat in the closet. You gathered everyone’s coats and put them in the closet as well.

“Miss (L/N), are these your friends?” Arnold asked, coming out of nowhere. The Club jumped, whirling around to face the older man. You, however, paid him no attention.

“I guess you could say that. Also, please try not to scare them. Wear a bell or something, please,” you said, looking over at him with a twinkle in your eye. His eyes reflected the twinkle, meaning he was going to do whatever it took to scare the Club shitless. Fuck. Yeah.

“As you wish, Miss (L/N),” Arnold bowed. You proceeded to introduce the Club to him. “Pleased to make your acquaintance. I’m Miss (L/N)’s butler, Arnold. If you’ll all follow me, I have prepared a German chocolate cake upon request.” Smiling, Arnold led the way to the dining room.

“He’s so cool!” Hikaru exclaimed.

“Is he one of those hot grandpas?” Kaoru asked.

“I think he is,” Hikaru replied, giving you a sly smile. You gave him a horrified look, your eyes wide. The twins laughed, but froze when they felt a presence behind them.

“Are you giving Miss (L/N) trouble?” Arnold growled, clamping his hands down on their shoulders. “Because if so, we’re going to have a very big problem.”

“Arnold,” you said. His green eyes met yours. You shook your head slightly. With a sigh, Arnold let go of the twins, whom immediately hugged each other.

“I apologize for my behavior,” Arnold mumbled before leaving to the kitchen. You sat at the table, waiting for everyone to sit.

“Have you guys ever played Monopoly?” Tamaki looks at you as he sits.

“Monopoly? What’s that?” he questions. You wait until everyone is seated before you speak again.

“Well, when I visited America, I picked up this board game called Monopoly,” you tell them. Everyone has their eyes on you, but you wait to explain further, seeing Arnold with slices of cake.

“Cake!” Honey exclaimed, bouncing in his chair. You momentarily wondered if he was actually five. Arnold merely smiled and passed out the cake, returning to the kitchen afterwards. You proceeded to explain the rules of the board game, and before you know it, the twins were in a fist fight, Haruhi was buying all the property, Mori was in jail, Tamaki was curled up under the coffee table and crying, Honey was sneaking money out of the bank, and you were sipping (F/B) as you watched friendships being destroyed. You smirked, curious to see how they would react to Risk.

“This was a terrible idea!” Tamaki cried, the carpet soaking with the tears he had shed.

“You’re a fucking cheater!” Kaoru yelled, throwing a punch at his twin’s face. Hikaru blocked it, kicking him in the stomach.

“You stole my money!” he screamed back.

“Did not, asshole!”

“Did too, ape-ass!”

“You fart in your sleep!”

“You broke a hole in the wall while fucking a pillow!”

“What about my nudie magazine, huh?! You thief!”

“I didn’t take it, dick muncher!”

“You’re so fucking ugly, Mom screamed in fear when you were born!”

“YOU’RE SO FUCKING UGLY, MOM SCREAMED IN FEAR WHEN YOU WERE BORN!”

You listened to the conversation, laughing to yourself.

“The moment when one twin calls the other ‘ugly’,” Mori commented, trying to get out of jail. You nearly choked on your beverage, soon laughing so hard, tears were falling. The sound of approaching footsteps was lost over the sound of fighting, laughing, and crying.

“Kyoya-chan, we thought you weren’t going to show up!” Honey exclaimed, looking up. You immediately froze, looking over to where Honey was looking.

Kyoya stood in the doorway, carrying a manilla folder and a shit-eating grin adorning his face as he stared at you.

Chapter Text

Hey guys! Very long time, no see! I apologize about that. However, I come bearing news. I opened up a Discord server specifically for my fics, so feel free to join! We're cool, I swear.

https://discord.gg/7HePKmV

See you there!

Chapter Text

Hello, everyone! Unfortunately, this is not an update. Let's talk about something big called RESPECT. To start off, I'm in college. I'm in college full time as a nursing student. I study eleven plus hours a day, not to mention I work and I struggle to maintain a healthy social life. I created my server so anyone who has a question can ask me directly. However, DEMANDING that I update or you'll come to my house with a weapon is UNACCEPTABLE.

Let me get one thing straight, because quite frankly, I'm beyond fucking pissed off. Today, I received a message saying that someone is threatening to come to my house with either eggs to egg my house, or to show up at my door with a baseball bat. First, this person threatens me, then they demand I update a fic.

NONE OF YOU TELL ME WHEN TO FUCKING UPDATE. YOU DO NOT TELL ME WHAT TO FUCKING DO AND EXPECT ME TO DROP EVERYTHING AND DO WHAT YOU FUCKING SAY, LIKE YOU'RE AN OWNER AND I'M SOME LITTLE BITCH YOU CAN ORDER TO SIT OR STAY OR BEG.

If I receive another message containing a threat or demanding me to update a specific story, without fucking notice, I will delete that story. Do not test me. I am sick of this childish shit. Grow the fuck up and realize that I'm not going to take any of this bullshit.

Also, a HUGE THANK YOU to those of you who understand that I may not update for a long time due to my busy schedule. You guys are fucking awesome and I love chatting with each and every one of you! You guys are the reason why I write these stories, and when I update, I make sure to put out the best possible content that I can. I love each and every one of you, and I hope to talk to everyone more!