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Lost (but still with you)

Chapter Text

"Those that go searching for love, only manifest their own lovelessness. And the loveless never find love, only the loving find love. And they never have to seek for it."

~{&}~

"Hey Kuro! Let's promise that we'll never separate from each other ever in a thousand or a million years! We'll use this bell to seal our pact— or, something like a contract together, alright? This will act as the base for our contract together so we can make sure that we'll always be connected. Through this bell," The young boy smiled as he held out a yellow bell with a string attached to it.

Kuro eyed the bell carefully and gently took it. It glistened and shone in the sun. It was obvious that it had been polished by the boy himself. It looked simple yet there was a warm and heartwarming feeling to it that resounded the boy's feelings, and he knew that it was mutual. He stared up at the boy who's smile resembled the sun and couldn't help but feel comfort from it.

He smiled back as he placed the bell around his neck, hearing it jingle softly with the rustle of his hair as the wind breezed by. It was as if a bond that was as tough as steel formed through their hearts, linking them to each other silently, making sure that the other wouldn't stray so far from the former. They were connected to each other.

Their feelings to each other were mutual and nothing in the world, no matter how sharp, how hard or how strong was ever going to break their bond; they were meant to be, and they both knew that fact even from a young age.

"Okay. We'll be together forever."

And forever's a long time that they'll spend together.

But little did he know that it would turn out to be the biggest lie that he has ever told anyone before in his life.

~{&}~

The tired teen with permanent eye bags that were covered by his baby blue bangs yawned and stretched his limbs as he stepped into the apartment, overseeing his new and temporary home.

It was a safe haven for him and he was glad he bought it. No more annoying siblings, no more distractions, and most importantly, no more memories that reminded him of his best friend from a decade ago, someone who he cherished with all his life and someone he could call his own.

His partner.

He sighed as he shook his head, his old yet polished bell that had a long string attached to it to keep it on his neck swaying with the wind and earning him a jingle, and he smiled softly. However, doing so reminded him of who exactly gave him that bell and he gritted his teeth.

No, he could not afford to bring bad omen to his new house now. It was a fresh start from everything that had lead up to this point in his life, and he was going to muster up any energy that he still had and could salvage to make it into a good fresh start. No more. He couldn't afford to remember anything else from his dark past just when he was about to start anew.

If he did, then there wouldn't be any point at all, right?

He shrugged to his own question and decided to explore his apartment, having unknown of what it looked like inside because he signed the contract without even seeing the interior of it due to the temptation of the cheap costs it had.

He shoved his hands into the pockets of his hoodie and was about to strut off, but something else was shoved into his face, albeit he felt nothing from it.

Though, he could definitely see it.

A translucent form that was halfway through the wall and halfway into the hallway popped out of nowhere, and creepily enough (if it wasn't already creepy at that point), it had the facial features of a boy who could not be older than twenty but not younger than fourteen, probably around sixteen to eighteen of that age.

The apparition turned to him, and judging the way how he could permeate through the wall — a feat he knew was impossible due to common sense — he could deduce at least one thing through the midst of it all.

This guy was a ghost.

It was obvious that the ghost— or, the boy was about to go to another room but was halted by his presence, and both locked eyes with each other in a slow but stress-inducing way with the Earth's clock seemingly stopping itself at that moment.

Time slowed down so slowly that he managed to watch as the boy finally gathered his bearings and saw the shock overwhelming him, if his wide eyes and gaping mouth was any to note.

The human teen however, was not consumed yet by the delayed feeling of shock, and his mind seemed to wander off to another place as he realised a key and crucial factor that explained the landlords apprehension when he told him that he wanted to buy this apartment.

The apartment was haunted by a ghost and he had bought it on a whim.

'Ah,' he thought woefully as the feeling shock finally enveloped him,'so this is why the apartment was so cheap.'

Maybe he should've checked it out first before buying it.

~{&}~

Kuro Ash, a high school student, rented out an apartment for a steep and cheap price and expected to live his life forever restlessly in solitude after his best friend died mysteriously without any explanation a decade ago, a memory that he doesn't ever want to recall ever again. A painful thorn that he has pricked himself with in a garden full of roses. Or a painful chapter in a novel that everyone wished that they never read, per se.

He rented it out in hopes of escaping the past, away from his siblings who try and reach out to him to help him but to no avail. He rented it because it was cheap and near to his school and since he was just a mere student, it was a win-win for him. It was impossible for him to not jump on this chance.

However, he should really check the apartment out before he signs the contract and not judge it just based on the price itself.

Especially if that apartment has an unwelcome roommate who floats and is slightly invisible and can pass through objects easily.

But why does his roommate act like a housewife and order him to live his life healthier, even going so far as to berate him when he eats instant ramen instead of home cooked meals?

And more importantly...

Why does his new roommate look exactly like his best friend from a decade ago?

Sadly, only time and a lot of unraveling of uncomfortable truths can tell.

~{&}~

"I'll always be with you, be it in body or soul."

Chapter Text

"Kuro!" A boy called out to him, voice as lulling as the ripples in the lake and as alluring as the boy himself. The cool wind fluttered the boy's soft brown hair and he looked beautiful even if he wasn't even doing anything. He jested that the boy didn't know what he was making him feel nor of the scale of his beauty. He was on par with the gods, maybe even higher.

Or maybe there was a god living in his body with the god's blood flowing in his veins.

The brunette flashed him a grin as wide as the cheshire cat's but instead of the usual mischievousness the cat held behind it's smile, he could easily see that the boy held no malice and was genuinely grinning his heart out. The brunette wore his heart on his sleeve and that was one of the aspects that he cherished about him.

"Yes?" He replied, voice unusually deep and monotone for a child.

Many adults berated him about it, telling him that he should be 'more expressive' and that having a monotone voice was boring. For awhile, he did believe them and tried to change his tone, faking emotions and putting a mask on to seem 'normal'. However, he was hurting himself inside and desperately wanted for someone to tell him that his voice was alright, that it was pleasing to hear.

And the brunette granted his wish to him when no one else would, telling him that his voice was calming to hear and it felt powerful, as if his voice alone was enough to make his worries rest at bay.

God, what on Earth did he do to deserve such a perfect guy like him?

After hearing his reply, the brunette extended his hand forward, beckoning him to take it. As if on instinct, he followed suit, the other's aura warm and welcoming.

He barely noticed the dark orange hues that tinted the sky, casting it into a soothing colour that coincidentally looked a little like the brunette's eyes. His eyes were drawn up to it. Huh, weird. He didn't realise that time had gone by so quickly. It was already time for the sun to set and to let the moon cast it's cooling and alluring shadow over the surface of the Earth.

His eyes scanned his surroundings and also noticed that they were still in the shrine that was located at the top of the small hill, the shrine that was also owned by the brunet's family. The boy invited him to come to the shrine that was located just a bit further from the district that their homes were at whenever he could and they both usually cycled an hour to get here, but he didn't complain about the duration. He enjoyed using the time to talk to the brunet and share how their lives were going about.

Yeah, their district's layout was a bit weird. If you had the stamina to cycle for an hour or so, you could reach a part of the district that was connected to the forest. It was a bit more rural than the modern districts where the forest was usually out of sight but still more modernised than most rural areas in Japan.

Done with observing his surroundings, his eyes were drawn back to the brunette who was already sitting by the steps that led down to the bottom of the small hill. He walked through the torii, making sure to walk down the side of the path rather than the middle to respect whatever deity was watching him at the moment, be it through his own eyes or through somebody else in the vicinity's body. He sat down by the brunette, and watched him.

"The sunset is really beautiful, isn't it? Especially from our shrine's point of view. You can capture the whole scenery here," The brunet whispered with his eyes drawn at the sky, mesmerised at it's beauty. Though, Kuro could refute that claim and say that the other's beauty outshone the sunset's.

His words were gushing out of his mouth before he could interrupt it,"While it is beautiful, one could easily say that you outshine the whole world by itself."

Hearing what he said, the other turned his head towards him, registering the words before chuckling with a pink tint on his face (he tried to ignore that he felt some of his own blood rush to his cheeks as well) and smiled,"Aw, thanks, Kuro. That's wonderful to hear."

He couldn't stop the heat from his cheeks as he averted his gaze away, eliciting more of the godsend chuckles from the former, blessing his ears with all it's glory and melting his worries away. He turned back to the brunette and saw a literal angel sitting before him, and he knew that no matter how many times he said it, the angel would deny him being one and that he was just a mere human.

'A mere human that could captivate anyone's heart,' his mind filled in for him and he found himself agreeing with it.

"Hey, Kuro."

Hearing the angel's soft voice again, the owner of the said name, Kuro, turned his eyes towards him with a questioning gaze and admired the boy's ability to wash all of his insecurities away just by being there and smiling at him.

The brunette smiled again, and whispered with hints of longing inside his voice,"Hey, promise me that no matter what happens, we'll always be together, alright?"

Kuro stared at him in silence, his heart growing wary at that sudden question. Why did he ask that? Did he doubt his loyalty towards him? Did he doubt their friendship? Did he doubt their bond?

"...Why do you ask?" He questioned back, wanting his fears to be quelled by the boy's reassurance that nothing was going to happen, that he didn't doubt their friendship, that he wanted to stay with him, that he wasn't being a burden. He just wanted any kind of reassurance.

He didn't want to lose him.

The brunette in question glanced to the shrine for a second and he swore he saw desperation and sadness in those eyes, increasing his feeling of a bad omen arising before the boy turned back towards him and gave a lighthearted (but clearly forced) shrug,"No reason. I just wanted to know. Just answer it. We'll always be together forever, right?"

Kuro didn't even need to think twice of his answer— his heart already knew what he was going to say, and he acted on it.

He used one of his hands to grab onto the brunette's one before promptly bringing it to where his beating heart was, and he answered truthfully with a warm smile on his face to try and get his point across, to relieve the brunette of whatever was weighing his heart down.

He didn't know what it was, but he wasn't going to pressure him to spill. He'll wait for him to tell him, like how he has always waited for him as well.

"Of course. We'll always be together forever. Mark my words. I'll never let go of you so you better not lose grip of my hand as well, okay?"

Once hearing that, a wide grin was spread onto the boy's face, strengthening their bond or contract together. Nothing was going to break the two of them apart, and they were sure of that. It relieved the boy's heart to think so, that there was actually hope outside of his circumstance.

He entwined their fingers together with a look of hope and promise on his brown orbs that spoke volumes of emotion. Those of which were hope and compromise in them.

"Don't worry, Kuro. I'm always by your side so don't stop smiling. I'll always be with you, be it in body or soul. Remember that and keep on living and smiling for my sake. Promise me that, alright?"

Kuro could only gulp but nodded back nonetheless, feeling their unbreakable bond in the air,"I'll always be by your side as well, Mahiru. I'll keep on living and smiling for your sake— for our sake. I promise you that. And our promise shall reign through the heavens with a loud and thundery roar, never to be shaken. So smile for me as well. Smile like the sun— my sun."

He brought their entwined hands together his lips, planting a soft kiss on it, signaling the contract's seal as a bond stronger than any god can break formed between them, strengthening their connection to each other.

He smiled as he whispered softly only for the bright brunet, the only source of peace in his life to hear, his words solely for him and never to be for anyone else.

"You're my ray of light, Mahiru. I'll always be with you, be it in body or soul. I love you."

~{&}~

A shock of electricity ran through a certain blue-haired man's spine, tingling every nerve in his body and sending it alive. It jolted him out of bed and sent raspy breaths through his lungs, his lungs fighting to contain the oxygen and to stabilize his heartbeat. His baby blue hair was plastered onto his forehead from the sweat, the same sweat that trickled down his cold back. It was like someone forcefully plunged his whole being into the cold waters and he was fighting for his life through it all.

A gaping hole formed into his chest, deeper than the dark and permanent bags under his eyes from the weeks and months or even years of insomnia from that fated one's death, the countless nights where he woke up without any purpose in life, the nights where he woke up wondering why he had to be the one to go and not him.

He was his sole purpose of living in life and without him, he had no reason to keep going. But yet he did since if he were to end it all, it would break their promise they had back then.

He gripped the sheets of his bed with a clenched fist, desperately trying to ground himself back to reality through the sensation of the fabric. Soft and silky, a sleek contrast to his sweaty palms. He desperately tried to grasp onto that foundation to build himself up back to reality.

Once that was done he focused on his breathing. He couldn't sit there gasping for air forever after all. He recalled the breathing techniques that therapy from all those years ago taught him— breathe in deeply, hold it there for a few seconds, release and then rinse and repeat until he felt like his lungs were cooperating with him again.

He focused solely on his breathing, crushing whatever thoughts that came to his mind immediately while closing his eyes and felt the air flow into his nostrils and then into his lungs. He felt the way his chest expanded and felt all of his worries melt away like he was one with the bed. All of the tension in his muscles decreased and he could think clearly.

With a deep sigh, he opened his eyes slowly and watched how his view formed again. Colors at a time. Then it shifted to the outlines and finally, the resolution sharpened. He could see clearly again without a clouded vision.

He released the death grip he had on his sheets and brought the hand to his chest where the gaping hole was still evident in. No matter how many times he breathed in or focused, it couldn't be filled up. He grasped onto his shirt, digging slightly into his chest to find the mole that was digging the hole deeper but couldn't find it. He gave up his pursuit and groaned, having failed yet again.

He has repeated this cycle for months now. Get a nightmare and wake up with that caving hole in your chest. And it wouldn't wear off. He carried it everywhere he went, his feelings of empathy and contentment being thrown into the abyss of it.

He knew what was causing the hole but it irritated him that he couldn't do anything about it. It was etched deep into his mind, a part of himself having been torn away from his soul— that part being his happiness that is.

And what caused the pain of having himself ripped into half was that boy's death.

Once when he was young, he had a partner. They were inseparable, always fighting on any troubles that life may have thrown at them together. Every time you tried to take one of them away from each other, they always worked their way around it to connect with the other again.

That partner was called Shirota Mahiru, and he loved him. Even if he was young and was still naïve to the perception of love, he could say with all honesty in his heart that he loved him with all his soul.

But unfortunately, after years and years of being together, the grim reaper thought that enough was enough and finally took one of them away which ended up to be Mahiru. He grieved greatly and to this day, he still hasn't gotten over his death.

He sighed yet again. He really should be over his death by now. It's been years since his funeral and everyone has moved on— but not him. He knew that he should've moved on by now, but he couldn't bring himself to.

No amount of therapy could bring back his true self and that made him question whether he truly was broken or not. It was as if that boy was a part of him and his death caused his entire soul to be corrupted. Like a red string of fate. Like an entwined pair that was sealed by destiny from god. To tear one of them apart was to tear both of them from existence.

And he was the remaining partner left.

He blinked back the tears that were threatening to rain down on his face. He was used to this. There was no point in crying anymore. Crying wouldn't bring him back as he was dead. And moreover, he had to carry on with life as per usual— it wasn't like time was about to stop for him just to mourn after all. He wasn't a god— nor did he have one residing inside of him. He had to move on.

With a low grumble, he wiped the tears away and swung his feet over the edge of his bed and used force to stand himself on his own two feet. He gave a few stretches, listening to the pops of his joints and enjoying the satisfaction it gave to him before quickly bringing himself to the mirror in order to grab his comb to brush his (probably) bed-hair.

Another day, another day of acting 'normal', he supposed.

Finding his comb at the desk that propped the mirror up, he quickly grabbed it and started to comb through his silky hair. He caught sight of himself in the mirror and feeling out of it, he peered in closer, studying the minute details.

His face was pale. Paler than all those years before. The eye bags that were probably permanent by this point had grown in size yet again and his eyes were devoid of any emotion but apathy. His hair's light color only proceeded to further accentuate how pale his skin was that he almost looked inhuman— like a vampire, maybe.

He sighed before pulling his gaze away from his reflection. His looks didn't bother him at this point. Years ago, if you were to tell his past cheerful self that he would turn out like this in the future, his past self would have ran away in horror. But there was no changing it now; this was how he looked and it would take much energy to bring him back to his old self— energy that he didn't have.

It felt tiring to even move a muscle. It was like a mountain had been planted onto his shoulders and he was expected to cross the whole world with that weight on— only that the 'journey of the whole world' was just him walking to the toilet and back. If he could, he would just lie in bed in an eternal sleep, never to be woken up. Maybe it would be for the best, actually.

But that would break their promise. And he always returned his promise, even if the other didn't return it back. It was like an oath that he would never dare to break, even if it suffocated him.

Out of the corner of his eye, he spotted something that was merely laying around on the desk. It piqued his curiosity as he went forward to pick it up and flipped it around.

Turns out, it was his student ID card with the bold and capitalized letters of 'KURO ASH SERVAMP' written in full display at the top, first name first, last name last so that the security guard could identify him easily. Below that was a picture of his face so that everyone knew it was him. After all, it was hard to find a guy with eye bags that deep in and crimson eyes to top it all off.

His family, the Servamp family which comprised of eight siblings, were practically celebrities in their neighborhood. His family consisted of seven brothers (including him) and one sister.

His brothers' names were Tsubaki, Jeje, Hyde, Lily, Hugh and Ildio while his sister was named Freya. The family order went something like this; Lily being the eldest followed by Freya and then Tsubaki, Jeje, Ildio, him, Hyde and Hugh in that same order.

People gawked at them and claimed that their eyes were almost equivalent to vampires', even though they knew that they were human. They said that it pierced into their soul like a god was watching them, seeing all they had to offer and it entranced them.

Maybe that was why many girls (and boys) swooned over them. Two of his siblings which were both blond, Lily and Hyde, attracted a lot of followers for their eccentric antics, with Lily having a habit of stripping out of nowhere while Hyde playing lot of roles in plays that portrayed him as a knight in shining armor.

His sister, Freya, had long purple hair and a nasty glare. She had also gained quite a fan base (though smaller than Hyde and Lily's) for her sharp and cold yet stunningly beautiful looks with most girls following her wherever she went. She has been labeled 'Wolf of Wrath' due to her characteristics, with everyone switching between 'Wrath' and 'Wolf' every now and then.

Jeje has long black hair and was known as the school's snake as he appeared cold and preferred to be alone and covering up his face and due to this, some edgy kids have taken an interest in his behavior. He was also kind of the informant in school— and did he mention that he was skilled with guns? Too skilled in fact that it was scary.

Ildio, a silver haired boy, wasn't necessarily popular with everyone, but he wasn't unknown as well. He has ranked up in the hierarchy with him winning competitions in sports left and right with his good physique, but that was also questionable since everyone who has seen him eat before had become horrified at the sheer amount of food he ate. Nonetheless, he was amazing to sports so people continued to cheer him on.

Hugh (a brunet) was still in primary school but he has been known throughout the neighborhood as a prodigy with the grades he was getting— straight As in whole life and he has skipped two grades. He was the teachers' favorite and he was friendly with his peers as well. Although, he did have this weird habit of claiming that he was a vampire but people all assumed that since he was just a kid, he was letting his imagination run wild.

Tsubaki (a raven haired asshole) was...well, he was maniacal. So much so that he has a cult following him— exaggerated, of course. It was just a clique. But the way the clique worshipped him like he was a god and how the members also had something wrong in their heads (like one time a certain cabbage head that was named Sakuya was almost arrested for bringing more than three knives to school) made everyone think that it was already a cult.

Everyone in his family was famous in their neighborhood, including him. He didn't know how he seemed appealing to others with how he always slept in class and just played games. People claimed that he was 'attractive' with his long blue hair and that he was a bit rebellious with how he always shrugged back at the teacher when the teacher reprimanded him. They nicknamed him 'Sloth' (which, to him, low key sounded cool so he didn't mind it).

But unlike the rest, he didn't like the attention. In fact, he loathed and despised it. All he wanted to do in school was to lay low and because of his siblings even that was impossible to achieve.

He didn't have eyes for anybody. He didn't have a preference. The only person that made his heart feel as if it had found it's one true love was that boy, who was no longer around. Everyone else looked like monkeys to him and he didn't care about them. So you could imagine the antagonizing pain he felt every time a girl tried to confess their love to him.

It was nauseating.

Plus, they always berated him whenever he rejected and made the girl cry. Friends of that girl be scowling at him, claiming that he was vermin. But what could he do? Force himself to give his already stolen heart to someone else that he didn't even know and act throughout his whole life? It wasn't fair at all.

But it was okay. It was tolerable. He had his siblings drive away most of those girls from him, claiming that he just didn't like the attention and that there were more fish in the sea. He appreciated their efforts and tried to lay even lower.

"Remembering all those events where a girl tried to confess to me... is such a pain. I don't want to remember those at all," He grumbled as he finished combing most of his bed hair off.

He glanced at the calendar that loomed on his desk, glaring at him with it's form as if chiding him for having the audacity to look at it again after not using it for a week.

Well, in his defense, he had a portable calendar with him and it was called his phone so he didn't really use that calendar. All he had to do when he was free was scroll up and the date would usually be displayed clearly. However, his phone was not in his hand at the moment so he had no choice but to bear with squinting his eyes at the calendar's date.

He approached it slowly and picked it up from the desk, trying to remember where he left off. Remembering that there was no school yesterday, that meant that it was probably a weekend. Sunday, in fact. Eliminating his choices since there was only one Sunday in one week, he quickly found the day's date and shrugged. Just a normal weekend with no plans scheduled.

He yawned as he got up and did his daily routine— wake up, check the date, take a shower and eat breakfast that one of his siblings cooked. He hoped it was either Freya or Lily since they were good chefs. Hyde's one usually became burnt and he didn't like tasting charred pancakes.

After taking a shower, he quickly grabbed his black shirt and his white trousers plus his iconic blue coat that had a cat's hood attached to it. The end of the coat was a bit ragged and messy as it turned to black but he didn't mind it. This was a look he was usually seen in when he wasn't at school.

Yawning one last time, he reached for the handle of his door and slowly creaked it open...

...To see seven of his siblings (excluding Tsubaki) all waiting patiently outside with Hyde's hand over an invisible handle.

They had a staring competition for a while, seven against one lone cat, before a hedgehog with blonde hair squeaked out of embarrassment and immediately retracted his hand from the handle and backed off.

"N-Nii-San! Hello!" Hyde, the said hedgehog, shrieked as he quickly backed away from shock and ended up bumping into Lily's shoulder, who just happened to be there when he needed it the most.

He continued to stare at him for a few more seconds before nodding slowly as a response. He glanced at the rest of his siblings before returning his gaze at Hyde, who visibly squeaked when he received the newly found attention and he asked,"...What are you all doing outside my room?"

The rest immediately snapped out of their dazes at that question, as if a switch was turned on inside of them. Lily, being the most mature and supportive of them all, quickly answered,"...Well, uh... Kuro, we're a family, right? And it's a free Sunday morning, right?"

Kuro could only imagine where this would lead to,"Yeah?"

"Well... since this is a rare morning where all of us are free, how about we all eat breakfast together, at the same table and at the same time? They do say meals taste better when with someone else," Lily chuckled lightly as a cover up to his sheepishness and Kuro could feel himself weighing his options.

It's been a while since they've had a breakfast together (with the exception of Tsubaki since he was mostly away all the times) and since he just woke up, he couldn't find any cons to it. They could probably catch up with each other on some things at the table and he could taste how freshly cooked breakfast that didn't have to be microwaved for a second time tasted like.

They could bond together like how a family should.

With his mind coming to a decision, he shrugged lightly, much to the relief of many of his brother's faces who were anticipating and expecting his answer with many hints of rejection only for them to be proved wrong. It made him wonder just how many times he had rejected spending time with them to make them already anticipate his answer to be a refusal in the first place and it caused a gaping hole of guilt to erupt.

"Splendid! I'll go and get the table ready. Freya, Ildio and Jeje, help me place the plates in their designated spots please? Hyde, Kuro and Hugh, you three can just watch TV first. Breakfast will be ready in a bit!" Lily squealed in excitement as Freya, Ildio and Jeje nodded and they all rushed down the hallway to carry out the given instructions while Hyde, Hugh and him were left standing there at his doorway.

"Hah! A vampire like me doesn't need to watch TV! All I need is just a drop of blood and a sacrifice to stay entertained for a whole week!" Hugh proudly announced as he flaunted his hand-sewn cloak by Lily and Freya around, something that he always brought along with him whenever possible.

Kuro and Hyde stared at him and both shrugged as Hyde replied,"Yeah, yeah. You're an amazing vampire and we get it. If you say that you don't need to watch TV then I'll just hog it for myself. Heard that the newest episode of Toilet Bound Hanako-Kun is screening today."

Hearing the title of his favorite anime, Hugh brightened up with stars glistening in his eyes and sprinted down the hallway faster than the speed of light while screaming something along the lines of 'it's screening today' and 'I'm gonna use the TV for the whole day today'. Kuro and Hyde glanced at each other again before sighing.

"Thanks for agreeing to eat with us today, Nii-San. You don't usually do this so I'm grateful for it," Hyde thanked with a big smile. Kuro blinked at him once, seeing a duplicate of that boy in Hyde for a moment before it flashed away, leaving him to reality.

Shrugging it off, he sighed,"Whatever... don't mention it. I'm hungry anyways. What's for breakfast today?"

"Pancakes!" Hyde exclaimed and seeing his little brother get hyped up from the littlest of things, it brought a small smile from Kuro.

Maybe he should really hang out with his family more.

"I'm looking forward to it."

~{&}~

A graceful figure fitting loose traditional Japanese clothing, her slender arms snaking through the threads and moving with it as if she was one with the wind, her pale complexion contrasting her black hair that further proceeded to accentuate her form's beauty, was looking down from high above as to what was thought to be the clouds.

There was something about her that provided tranquility and peace to her surroundings as everything felt calm for once. She batted her eyelashes down as she continued to peer down from her spot in heaven.

She snapped her fingers and almost immediately, a translucent orb appeared in front of her. Images started to form inside the orb slowly and once it stabilised, it showed two males; one a blond and the other sporting baby blue hair, both bickering amongst themselves.

She chose to ignore the blond and instead focused in on the bluenette, watching his slightest movements and noticing the changes in his mood that seemed to  change every time the blond said something ridiculous. She scoffed lightly as she watched the exchange between them two.

She sighed as she leaned back from her previously hunched position, eyes closed as concentration filled her mind. It was as if she was searching for something in the archives of her memory, and when she finally grasped onto it, her eyes slowly revealed themselves again.

She leaned into the ball again and eyed the bluenette, feeling hints of mischief and slight pity fill her voice,"So this child is the vessel for that god for his generation, huh? Seeing as both vessels for both gods end up finding themselves being drawn to each other no matter how different they are, you must've experienced tremendous amounts of torment and guilt, huh? Poor child."

The graceful lady sighed deeply as she fluttered her eyelashes shut,"How long is he going to keep this up for, snatching precious lives left and right just for his own power which will never meet mine? How long is he going to keep tormenting that god's vessels for, even though he has no knowledge of it? Even after all these millenniums, he's still frustrated at me? When will he move on?"

Feeling a dilemma rising upon her shoulders, the lady shrugged as it was futile at this point. However, she peeked an eye open again at the orb, seeing the bluenette continuing to converse with the blond.

A smirk grew on her face at that,"Well, it is not my problem. Childish gods have no say or right in serious matters, nor should they coddle around with each other. I do also hope that the conflict shall be solved soon, but we'll have to see."

Her sharp eyes zoomed in on the male, gaze never leaving him as she analysed his form. Digging deeper, she could feel an underlying will within the boy, something that could be the key to everything.

Feeling satisfied, she ended her analysis as she entwined both of her hands together and placed them on her lap,"A marvel millions of years in the making, where the womb of Earth chaotically meets the surface. Under a clean blue sky, an expanse of bliss— but beneath gray rolling clouds, an endless enigma. The easiest would to get lost in is one where everything can be found . Time is ticking. I wonder if you'll become the map for this maze that your pitiful god has caused, Kuro Ash. Because if you don't in the time limit..."

A pitiful and hollow smile spread across her face.

"Shirota Mahiru's soul may cease to exist in both worlds anymore."