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I'm So Happy

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The Beginning

I love you. I love you. I love you. I love you. I love you.

He really did.

It was such a feeling that he almost believed he might actually implode had he not let out those words, yelled them, sang them at the top of his lungs.

Of course, no one else could know their true meaning or to whom they were really directed. But it didn’t matter, as long as he knew, as long as he sang that not only to himself, but to the whole world. His words to Sakura.

I’m So Happy was a special, intriguing song. It was a declaration of his own love, but also a representation of Sakura, who he was, how he felt, what he was going through. Everything.

It was a song that was truly theirs. Not just Hyde’s, not just Sakura’s. It was a shared creation, a unique connection, an intimate conversation. It’s the kind of song you can’t tell where one speaker ends and the other begins. Or rather, the speaker was both of them and none at the same time. Singing that song, they were one.

Above all, it represented how they were in this together. Not just as band mates.

It was the most confusing of times. As L’Arc~en~Ciel grew more and more famous, Sakura fell deeper into his own abyss of drugs and emotional alienation, all while Hyde fell deeper in love with him.

They loved each other harder every second it came closer to falling apart, as if desperate to hold it all together. That was I’m So Happy. A desperate cry for your loved one not to quit on you as you become more and more of a wreck and also the feeling of utmost admiration for the one last thing you can hold onto: that unwavering love.

It was both beautiful and exasperating. And he could not fake nor hide it when he sang that song. Even if for just a second, it was impossible not to look at him.

I love you.

He just had to look at him.

In the media, it was not so much of a problem to say that song was his and Sakura’s. It was not like the others could put those pieces together.

And similarly, Sakura also thought it was just harmless to slip in the word “hide” in the name of the one song he wrote. It was not spelled with an “y” after all, so it was no big deal right?

It was also no big deal that he was falling apart, calling desperately for everyone to look at things the way he saw them, no. It also meant nothing that the most revealing lyrics he could write were in English, a language none of them understood.

Sakura was shouting a secret at everyone’s ears without actually communicating at all. Simple as that.

Hyde, on the other hand, was hanging on to a fleeting moment like it would never go away. Like nothing would ever grow worse. Like things could still get better with just the right amount of love, patience and devotion.

The band was at stake. Ken and Tetsu were really working their asses off too. And Hyde, he had a secret and overbearing responsibility of keeping it all together. He never knew he could give so much.

Outside, he seemed aloof with his ever so distant eyes. Sakura, however, was scarily intense and surprisingly capable of such kindness. You could say one was more truthful than the other.

The other band members could only have some idea of what was going on between the two of them, but no real confirmation, no evidence, no clue.

It was easier for Hyde to tease and play along with Tetsu on stage exactly because with the two of them it was just a silly joke, just some eye candy for the fans. With Sakura… it felt dangerous. They flirted like it was just for fun, but there was always something in the air. Something strange.

Hyde could not tell when exactly it all started, but since the beginning, their relationship just seemed to be shaped differently.

Early on, Sakura was the scary guy in black and Hyde was the hungry dork who ate all his food. Then, they became drummer and singer. They saw the first glimpse of admiration and respect during a jam session together. That was their primary connection, a bond shared with Tetsu and Ken.

It was Ken who began all the joking around Sakura. Tetsu, himself, wouldn’t shut up about how ideal his “actors” were and how it was all finally coming together. He literally offered his own roof to Sakura just so they could all be together.

Hyde, on the other hand, was the last to join the “Sakura train”, so to speak. As usual, he was quiet and also a bit suspicious, but he played along for the sake of the band and well, out of politeness. Then, little by little, he found out how sweet Sakura could be if he only felt like it.

The scary man who was once angry at Hyde’s gluttony was now gently pushing a tray of food to Hyde’s side, just so the short guy wouldn’t have to stretch his arms. He did it without anyone asking for it. Sometimes, he would give out cigarettes and just check on him for no real reason. And whenever he looked at Hyde, he really looked. Not as if his eyes could pierce through someone’s soul or that kind of bullshit, no. Rather, you could just tell he was paying attention.

Those were things Hyde really came to notice and with that, he realized just how much good intentions could mean. Although Sakura was still the same imposing guy, he did come across. There was no option but to let him in.

And so the jokes started. Like with everyone else on L’Arc, they were funny. Ken, as expected of the happy-go-lucky guitarist, was the “joking bridge” of the band, but soon there was no need for anyone else to mediate their fun. It just happened on its own. And even sooner, they no longer needed any words. It got dangerous.

Jokes about each other’s sexiness. Comments on what kind of underwear they were (or were not) wearing. Sex position jokes. Innuendos. Casual bondage. A kissing dare. Drinks.

Jokes when everyone was listening, as if it was nothing. Jokes when nobody was around, like they would not dare.

And they hadn’t, until one fateful night they stumbled on each other in the hallway of a hotel, coincidentally when no one else was awake or around.

And they just kissed. Like it was about time. Like they had dared each other enough.

With no need for further conversation, innuendos or jokes, all the “foreplay” had been painstakingly and exhaustively done. They had just the right amount of alcohol in their systems to be a little bit bolder, a little bit braver, a little less self-conscious.

It was really about time.

So they kissed, right there, in the middle of the hallway where all the crew was staying as if no one would ever dare to walk in on them.

First, there were only Sakura’s hands on Hyde’s hair and their lips pressed against each other’s for some long seconds.

Then, they broke away and looked. Not at anything or anyone, but at themselves. They may have faced one another, but it was rather a gaze inwards, at their own desires which proved to be very real at last.

This was no joke, no dream and, hopefully, no delusion either.

Milliseconds of breath taken inwardness were enough. So they kissed, again. This time with Hyde’s hands on the nape of Sakura’s neck while Sakura pushed and pressed him against the wall, his lips urgently reaching for Hyde’s. Tongues slipped in and it was not long before Sakura’s tasted the sweet skin of his newfound lover’s neck, ear...

They felt each other’s skin, under their shirts, undoing their pants as moans and groans filled the silent room. And as things escalated, Hyde finally remembered they were in public.

“The keys” he whispered between his breath.

“What?”

“To the room… They could see us…” Sakura backed his head away and eyed him. There was vulnerability in Hyde’s eyes. That’s when Sakura came to the realization that they were actually going through with it. It was not just a drunk kiss in the hallway. It was an invitation to come in. Quite literally.

It was happening.

At that moment, blood rushed to his head. He felt his “manhood” waste away, and such terrifying thought pushed him to the edge of escaping. No Hyde, no sex, no kiss, no nothing.

But reality pulled him in with the feeling of Hyde’s hands still touching his belt, lightly tugging on it in expectation, growing loser every second, but never less lustful.

So Sakura kissed him, and those kisses seemed to never stop coming. They were driven by impulse and with such drive, Sakura quickly broke away to take Hyde’s hands and lead him to the nearest of their rooms.

Just from holding his hand, he could feel Hyde’s racing heart, as if connected, his responded with a rush of its own. They pulsated in sync.

What are we doing? What are we going to do?

He closed the door behind them and pressed Hyde’s small body against it. They kissed over and over, but what was meant to be passionate and rough turned out to be a little more self-conscious than expected.

In a rushing heartbeat, along racing minds and cold sweat, they started to sober up.

Hyde swallowed dry and pushed Sakura away gently, to which the other his breath in fear. He looked up at him firmly and pulled his own shirt over his neck, showing his smooth skin and ripe nipples.

They couldn’t turn back.

With a throbbing ache, Sakura held Hyde’s waist and pecked his lips, his forehead, his cheek, his neck, his collarbone, his chest, his navel, each kiss growing deeper and more desperate, all while Hyde wrapped his arms around his neck and entwined his fingers on his hair. There was no longer any garment covering up his body.

Hyde tugged and moaned and blushed and felt such inescapable sensations he was not even aware were possible. With a gasp, he pushed Sakura away, stopping him before it was too late, and pulled him up to undo the buttons of his shirt as he filled him with maddening kisses.

They were going through with it.

He kneeled over Sakura, skillfully undoing his belt and touching him. The movements of his hands followed the rhythm of their lips before Sakura pulled him closer, positioning him.

Hyde’s heart skipped a beat.

“Wait.”

“What’s wrong?”

“You can’t go in dry.”

Sakura had never thought about that. Or anything of the sort at all, for that matter. And was there even time to think at such a moment?

So he just stared back, at loss, at the boy biting his own lips right above him.

“Wait…”

Hyde rushed to the drawer of the nightstand, searching for anything of use, but only found condoms, which, ok, were important but not really the concern at hand there.

He looked in his luggage and found body lotion. Gulp. It would have to do. And yet he still was not ready enough.

Quietly, he walked over to the bathroom and closed the door.

Sakura had no idea what that really meant, but he could only wait and, well, hope for the best.

Those were not the easiest minutes of their lives, especially Hyde’s. It had all escalated so quickly after ages of built up tension and zero action. He had no time to think and no time to prepare. This was it.

With no guidance, no experience and so many worries it made him dizzy, he prepared himself as best as he could.

They were moving forward.

Two knocks on the bathroom door.

“Hyde, are you ok? Everything all right there?”

“Right…” Hyde breathed.

He came out the door with expectant eyes and the body lotion held tight between both hands. He handed it to Sakura quietly and threw his best “cool” aloof expression.

“Please treat me well” he said.

In return, Sakura eyed him for a whole second before bursting in laughter. He held him close in a caring hug and pulled him to bed.

It was real. And nice.

He carefully positioned Hyde and, as they gazed deep into each other’s eyes, he entered him slowly.

And it was not easy. It was painful. It felt tight. It hurt.

Hyde gripped Sakura like he could transfer the pain with scratches on his back and pulling on his hair. Their bodies moved in rhythm amidst pain and a growing sense of pleasure. They gained momentum as things became a lot less delicate and a lot more animal. The headboard banged frantically against the wall.

They kissed between breaths and moaned and groaned and Sakura grabbed the sheets, the wooden board, just anything he could use to push even deeper as Hyde tried to wrap his legs around his hips.

Sakura pulled out and rolled him over. In one thrust he was back in, making Hyde cry out so loud he might have woken up the entire hotel.

A confusion of hands and hair and imbalance as both moved closer and closer to the wall with each thrust, trying to connect deeper with one another. Sakura kneeled up, grabbing Hyde’s hips with such fierceness he almost bled until they came.

It happened.

They were exhausted. Covered in sweat. Confused. And happy. So happy.

It felt like they could stay awake forever, just wondering at what was, but as things go, sooner than later they just fell into deep sleep.

The Next Act

The next morning was nothing like the night before. They didn’t talk about it. Sakura woke up, admired Hyde for a minute, put on his clothes and was just gone to his room.

Hyde took a long shower and pretended, even to himself, not to think about it. Just a normal day for the band. Casual.

The jokes lessened. They didn’t talk alone much. It was not so perceptible to the others at first, but after a few days questions began to rise. Ken checked in on them, trying to know if something was up. Sakura and Hyde just chuckled it off.

It was time to joke around again. They did not want anything to be weird, right?

Even though every day and every night they secretly perspired to the memories of each other, to the point it was exhilarating and almost unbearable, they didn’t talk. At least not about it. And it hurt. So it was time to get normal and start to be friends again.

It started with lunch. And then casually smoking together. Next they were chit-chatting about the day. And opening up more about music, of course. Random ramblings took place. They joked around Ken, then by themselves. No sexual innuendos. Then yes sexual innuendos. And they looked at each other a different way.

It was not just vaguely dangerous anymore.

They both knew. Sakura and Hyde knew what beautiful heart wrenching wreck this could become. And each time, Sakura looked at Hyde more, in frequency and intensity. In return, Hyde tried to ignore those stares. However, every once in a while he would let out a fleeting glance that spoke more than a thousand words.

Hyde pretended not to pay attention to Sakura’s endless rambles, but sooner than later he ended up laughing like a smitten teenage girl, and for him it really felt like every word that came out from Sakura’s mouth was just so smooth and funny.

They gazed at each other, awkward smiles playing on their lips, and for once they simply appreciated that heartwarming, once in a lifetime friendship. With one’s blatant care and attention, and the other’s secret sensitivity.

It was something else.

What Hyde nurtured for Sakura was not the admiration and reliability he felt for Tetsu. It was not the brotherly camaraderie he developed with Ken. If they were all family, and at that point they really kind of were, Sakura did not play the part of a blood relative. What he was, Hyde did not dare to think.

They could not talk about it, but it became clearer each day that sex was not even the point anymore. It became all encompassing. He felt warm inside when they had long talks or just hung out in silence. He ached when he thought about the distance between them. He felt sick when he saw him flirt with others. And his scent, ah, it drove him mad to the point Hyde could smell him even when he wasn’t there.

He drowned those feelings in alcohol, and he knew Sakura couldn’t be up to any good either. He just did not know how bad it was.

The next step to take was a mystery, and maybe it was right to simply turn back. And in turn, one way or the other, all this could ruin the band. Together or not.

Eventually, it became time to seek help from a friend. The problem is it did not help either. Instead, talking about it with others just made things messier for every part.

Around Sakura, Hyde could never find the right words. It was always either awkward silence or a fail attempt to bring up the topic before changing it completely as if nothing ever happened. And, inevitably, their vibe became weird again, in ways Hyde did not quite understand until Sakura casually asked him if he was into “some girl”.

No. No. No!

A new misunderstanding had arisen, and just then Hyde realized what a majestic fuck up it was to tell the other band members about it. Well, unless he could turn that whole situation around on his favor.

“Well… there is this one person.” Hyde cocked an eyebrow, eyeing Sakura from the corner of his eyes.

“Oh yeah, yeah… Cool...” Sakura nodded repeatedly, also gazing away. Each step further apart. It felt uncomfortable. “So what is she like?” He finally asked, and Hyde took his time, playing with his hair amidst thought, panic and his mysterious overcompensation for what a mess he was inside.

“Uh… you could say, the name is pretty girly”. She’s uh, she’s very good looking…” he spied on Sakura again “It’s a person who seems kind of scary at first.” He laughed. Sakura did not seem to find it so funny though.

“Scary how?” It was a weird way to talk about a girl after all. Hyde’s smile spread into a grin.

“Very dark, always in black clothing, kind of a martial arts fighter…” Come on. He had dropped all the hints. Sakura, however, took his time to digest it though. At this point, Hyde was questioning who was the dumb one now (since he was infamous for being the airhead of the group). It would have been a sweeter victory to brag about if it only were not so nerve wrecking.

“Some girl you got there” was all Sakura said. In stalemate they were, in stalemate they continued. Hyde just looked dead at him. That was it. That was the conclusion Sakura took from it. Unbelievable. And yet, true.

Thus longing turned to frustration. Ache became annoyance, which became anger. And for fuck’s sake, Hyde was ready to find a girly named girl to set things straight.

L’Arc~en~Ciel moved on with the tour, new concerts came along, Hyde’s clothes were practically torn apart by groupies and Hyde was ready to pick one of those up when he was pushed against the wall by Sakura. Again, a corridor, this time on the backstage of the venue which they hadn’t left yet. Hell, they hadn’t even changed.

In the seconds that followed such a brash encounter, Hyde was breathless, just staring dead at him. Sakura might have been drunk. As soon as Hyde got back on his senses from the shock of the situation, he rolled his eyes and averted his gaze. His heart still raced though, so much so he knew Sakura’s hand on his wrist would feel it. What on Earth was happening?

“What’s up?” Sakura demanded an answer.

“Ha… You ask me?” Hyde gazed back and forth from Sakura’s hand on his wrist to the man’s eyes. Seriously, what?

“You’re giving me the cold shoulder.” Yeah, clearly that justified this action.

“Do you think so?” dodging questions was an art they had mastered in that band. They made sure to show it on every interview, but sometimes it showed off on their personal lives too. It did not pass unnoticed though. A low blow.

“Yeah, I do think so, so will you tell me what’s up?”

“I think you’re just mistaken. So will you please let me go?” The way Hyde looked at him, it was not vulnerable. Rather, he acted like he was scolding the drummer, who let go of his wrist, but did not move a step further.

“Hyde. Come on. I’m not blind and I hate your fucking lies.”

“HAH…” he widened his eyes “Then how about you be truthful to yourself?” this time Sakura was the one taken aback “Yes, that’s right, how about you stop stringing me along? Or you know, leave me alone?” it turned out Sakura was not the only one who was not sober after that concert.

“... What...?”

“Yeah you go all stupid face around me and then give me that stupid kiss and then you leave next morning and then you act like you care? Hah!” he wasn’t mumbling, but words spit out so fast one hit over the other, each one a personal slap on Sakura’s face. Hyde had broken their silent pact. He broke it. He broke it. It was out in the open now. It was real. It was not a dream.

“What are you staring at?” Hyde went on “Oh Big Mr. Truth, Mr. I Hate All Bullshit.” he actually mimicked Sakura’s deep mumbling voice. “You can’t just…” he never said the end of that sentence.

Sakura’s lips pushed so hard against Hyde’s his head hit the wall. Hyde wrapped his arms around him, oblivious to pain, oblivious to his surrounding, pulling his hair and scratching his back and doing everything he could to feel it was real and there in throbbing pain.

They moaned audibly and on the first sound of steps surrounding them, Sakura grabbed Hyde’s wrist and pulled him to the nearest supply closet, locking it up with whatever equipment he found in the place, pushing Hyde’s sweaty body against the shelves, rocking against him so hard things fell on them.

He did not bother to take Hyde’s rags off, and for Hyde it was all the easier how Sakura was only wearing leather pants, which did not resist against the force with which he pulled them down, taking Sakura’s member inside his mouth at once, like he always provoked on stage.

Sakura ran his fingers through Hyde’s hair, making it an even bigger mess than before, closing his eyes and letting his head fall back as he took in all the pleasure from Hyde’s tongue licking all over his length and deep throating him. He gripped onto strands of hair and gasped as the sultry lips moved back and forth, tightly wrapping around his length.

He pulled Hyde’s head up only enough for the short one to look at him, staring straight into his eyes as Hyde slowed down the movement to suck him sensually, enjoying every inch, and lowering his lips right below the head, sucking on it with expertize. Running his tongue in a circular motion and kissing the tip before taking it all in again.

Sakura gasped, holding the shelf behind him with his spare hand as he tried to find balance before he pushed Hyde’s head away, meeting the singer’s confused eyes for a spare second before he pulled him up and devoured his lips, wrapping an arm against his waist and groping his behind. Hyde held him tight, feeling Sakura’s stiffness poking his belly, as his partner’s tongue traveled from his lips to his neck and ear, which he provoked with a bite.

In a team effort, Sakura undid his belt and Hyde kicked off his pants, leaving the way open for the drummer to pull him up from his thighs, allowing Hyde to wrap his small legs around him as he cupped his lover’s face and kissed him, already feeling Sakura’s hard dick rubbing on his entrance with shivering anticipation.

Holding Hyde up against the shelves like the tiny singer weighed no more than a feather for him, Sakura’s right hand moved around looking for just about anything that could ease his way in. He lubed himself with God knows what and with two wet fingers entered Hyde, who let out a high pitched moan as Sakura skillfully moved around, widening his way in as Hyde carved his nails on his back, his own dick already dripping with pre-cum.

“You like that, huh?” Sakura whispered on a low husky voice, and Hyde, who had used the last of his throat, had no strength to reply with anything more than a moan, throbbing for so much more. His eyes rolled to the back of his head in pleasure and anticipation and unbearable longing for that person who was just now touching him again after such a long time apart, being within his arms’ reach, but unable to touch until then.

“...Please.” was all Hyde could say and Sakura, who could no longer wait anymore, removed his fingers, grasping Hyde’s thighs with both hands before he went all in at once, making the singer cry out.

Sakura rest his head on Hyde’s neck, groaning into his skin and making circular movements with his crotch as Hyde panted in pain and desire, holding his lover tightly as he took some time to recover before nodding gently against Sakura’s head, who responded by moving back and forth, halfway slowly at first, but soon gaining momentum — neither could hold back.

Your hair and your skin, I still want to touch them

Hyde didn’t quite know where to put his hands. He clumsily tried to hold on to the shelf behind him, but did not find any balance as it shook harder with every merciless thrust, forcing him to hold onto his lover like his life depended on it.

Your eyes wet with tears

Sakura thrust deeper and harder and faster, so much it ached, deliciously. A pain they desired. Disoriented, desperately coming closer to one another, closing in the distance, thrusting and rubbing skin to skin, dirtying Sakura’s abdomen with all of Hyde’s pre-cum, which felt like a caress against the toughness of his torso. All the sweat making a mess of his body paint, flowers blurring into nothingness. Bodies opened wide, at the same time closing in.

Your voice, your fingers, your smile, ah

Hurt, hurt, hurt and pleasure, the roughness of the shelves, the brashness of contact, Sakura’s teeth sinking into Hyde’s skin, marking him as his own, claws running down the drummer’s back, banging noise and pants and cum shot inside Hyde with a loud groan, fingers closing around his thighs so tightly he would get sore, the vocalist’s orgasm following soon after, completing the picture of Sakura’s blurry chest.

All I think about is you

They rest their heads against the shelf, falling slowly onto the floor, where Hyde sat on Sakura’s lap. They breathed into one another’s skin, gazing softly at the other’s eyes, before instinctively touching their lips again.

I love you, I love you

I love you, I love you

I love you, I love you

I love you, I love you

They were tired, but happy. So happy. As they sat there, their scents mixed into one. And all they experienced was then and there.

I love you, I'm so happy with love

Epilogue

Right now I may look to you

Like I'm in a great deal of pain

But still, please don't kill me

Until I close my eyes for real

Sakura and Hyde were no longer playing by the rules of the past. They still hid it from the others, but they were no longer going to run away from their feelings.

That night, Sakura left the supply closet first, as if nothing unusual had happened. There were no big news there, just sweaty and messy Sakura after a long performance.

Hyde left second, giving a couple of minutes time so no one would suspect anything. He played dumb in such a straightforward Hyde way he looked like a guilty cat. That was not unusual either, or nothing anyone cared about anyway.

Averting each other’s eyes on the way to the hotel, they got into their respective separate rooms. Just like any other day, they showered, they had dinner and then back to bed. And, as if in a new silent agreement, neither fell asleep. Instead, they waited. Awake until no one else was. And, again, in a hallway they met. This time without a kiss, but with a quiet procession to Sakura’s room, where they made love all over again and slept into each other’s arms.

This time, they were not letting go.

A new routine was established. One of tiptoeing around others. Of making jokes they thought no one else would understand, but never giving too much away. Of sneaking out at every opportunity, into bathrooms and supply closets and of climbing into each other’s bed at night. Of leaving early in the morning before the others were up, of coming up with excuses whenever they got caught, of finding reasons to be roommates whenever there was a chance.

They did not do as much as avert each other’s gaze anymore. At least, not when there were any cameras around. Sometimes, even when there were. They just looked. And laughed. And smiled.

During concerts, Sakura made a habit of carrying Hyde on his shoulders. Silly, but subtly territorial. On interviews, they whispered into each other’s ears, and you could notice just the slightest bit of jealousy when Hyde played around with Tetsuya.

Even if they did not say a word to the others, for one another, they became confidantes. The problem were the things that could not be said, even more serious for the press it would be than a relationship between the two of those. The things that happened outside of the honeymoon.

Way more obvious than any fling between the two of them was Sakura’s drug abuse. It was not like the others were fully clean. Even Tetsu, the tidy and perfectionist leader, messed around with substances. The issue was why and how much Sakura used it. He did not stop himself from getting high before anything that mattered to the others: interviews, concerts. You could see his wild eyes, hear his incoherent sentences.

It did not seem to be a problem at first. They did not feel like they had the right to complain at first. However, things escalated gradually. He began to lose weight. He was late to rehearsals. He was unwilling to do things that everyone had to. And on the worst days, he would not show up at all. It drove Tetsu insane.

For Sakura, creating and performing the Dune songs was incredible. It was his first time as an actual member of a band. He was learning how to be part of a team; he exchanged experiences with amazing musicians and formed a bond with people that became like his own family. It was his first glimpse of how powerful it could all be, he could be.

And next, they debuted as a major band with Tierra. That was when things began to take a different direction. It was still a truthful work, but the pressure to write more commercial songs crept in gradually, only worsening with Heavenly.

Yes, Heavenly. The so suitably titled album that represented the time when they first got together. There was no need for words. They were happy with one another, at last.

The moment of Truth was when it all came spiraling down. The big reveal was not of love, but of open wounds. While together, Hyde and Sakura worked on two songs: I’m So Happy and Good Morning Hide. Two sides of the same coin: one presents hope, the other, despair.

How did not you notice?

Sometimes, even if you are aware that a certain problem exists, you may just not realize the actual magnitude of it. Like when a friend of yours is always sad and exhausted, and you just assume that is how life is, until that friend kills themself and you realize for the first time it was not “just anything”. And then, every cry for help comes screaming back into your mind, and you will always know that it was there all along.

Sakura was in one of those situations. No matter what lyrics he wrote, how he refused to give meaningful answers doing interviews, or even to speak at times, how he perceived his entire behavior to be as self-explanatory as possible… At the end of the day, he could not communicate directly with others, and they could not see what was going on. And when shit hit the fan, it struck everyone as an awful “surprise”, when, as a matter of fact, it was an announced tragedy.

One side neglected the signs.

The other failed to express them properly.

And as the outcast of the group failed his duties, he had to be left behind, for the sake of a greater good, the survival of the majority. Not because he did drugs, but because he got addicted to them. Because he got caught, and Japan would take a while to forgive. Because he had been showing signs that he was no longer committed to the band, not the way the others were anyway, no matter what his reasons were. And it hurt.

It weighed like a cross of guilt on both Sakura and Hyde’s shoulders.

Because one failed his comrades.

And the other left his lover behind.

It was no easy choice.

After Sakura’s arrest, the first reaction of the band and crew was to take care of the problem. But for all of them, it meant getting off the radar for a while. They could exchange a few words with Sakura, but nothing much. Nothing too private, too close. They were torn apart.

When Sakura got home, things were already sorted so that the band could return to the scene. That meant replacing Sakura with a capable and emotionally available drummer. Tetsu made the rational call, and everyone followed, including Hyde. Even though he wanted to find another way, even though he loved Sakura and did not want to replace him with anyone else, even if it was only in his role as a drummer. At the end of the day, however, he could only agree. It was something else. It was everyone’s career. It was their precious L’Arc~en~Ciel, which they were not even allowed to call by its name at that point. It was also the fact that no one could really tell if Sakura even wanted back. And so, they could not take that leap of faith. Not when they did not even know what the name “L’Arc~en~Ciel” meant for Sakura anymore.

Thus, a love story fell apart. The lovers chose not for love, but for necessity. They did not break up, they were torn apart. They could not be together, this time, not physically. They could not stay in touch. They could not be there.

There was one thing that could not be erased though. I’m So Happy would remain. In L’Arc~en~Ciel concerts. In HYDE concerts, as they came to be. In Lion Heads concerts. Wherever they were. Together or not. It is their song. Until this day.