An itchy feel in the legs disturbs Hibari’s sleep. He recognizes it as the body’s rebellion against sleeping in the same position for too long — countless are the times he experienced the pain — but before giving in to his body’s request he opens his eyes.
Hibari expects to see the plain, fair ceiling of the room he shares with Dino, in his mansion in Italy, as well as the ostentatious chandelier right in the middle of it. Yet, there’s no trace of either. In their place, a sequence of thick and thin wooden boards define a square motif which several modest lights of the same shape are hanged to. Below him his fingers feel the tangles of a tatami instead of the mattress he recalls falling asleep on; around him he sees minimalistic, oriental furniture.
Everything is familiar, too familiar, painfully familiar. Hibari doesn’t take more than an instant to understand where he is right now. He closes his eyes, his legs still begging for even the most miniscule of movements, but calming down his breath takes priority at the moment.
He hasn’t been in that room many times yet he unfortunately perfectly remembers any detail about it. He can’t really tell what made him believe that squeezing his eyes before reopening them would bring him back to the western bedroom he has become accustomed to. He doesn’t question why he is back to his childhood house — neither does he think it’s weird that he doesn’t question it, because on a very unconscious level he is aware of what’s happening. What he really knows is that he doesn’t want to be there.
The feeling of distress won’t lift, rather it only gets worse when Hibari sits back up and notices the puddle of blood almost touching his bare feet. He can’t smell it but there’s no doubt about the entity of the fluid. He has seen floods of blood in his life and many times he has been the cause of it spilling.
The red stain in the receiving room of his old house is the only trace of murder that gives the man anguish even after all the time that has passed, after all the times the flashbacks have creeped up on him in the form of nightmares.
Hibari doesn’t need to raise his head to know that in front of him lie the lifeless bodies of his parents, mercilessly betrayed and slaughtered by so-believed trusted allies almost twenty years prior. However he does look up: he is prepared to the umpteenth sight of his family’s murder as well as the detached personification of himself as a child, crying because everything he had has just been taken away from him.
But once again, what’s past his eyes is not the scenery he expects.
Hibari freezes on spot, swallowing is suddenly too hard. He can’t hear himself but he has just muttered broken laments before going silent again.
In that room with him, there is only one more person lying face down. Despite the blood covering the body in red almost whole, the blond hair and the flames tattooed on the left hand can unmistakably belong only to one person that Hibari knows well.
Hibari’s vision goes blurry for a bunch of seconds that feels too long. Even without actually checking, something is telling him that it’s too late.
Too late for any attempt to save Dino’s life.
Too late to hear “I love you” one last time.
Too late for yelling at him that he shouldn’t dare die by the hand of someone who isn’t his.
Too late to make the culprit pay for their crime.
Hibari walks up to the cadaver. Staining his feet isn’t a concern. He keeps control of his body the best he can and he’s deadly quiet, like everything else in the room, had it not been for the hands he doesn't manage to stop shaking and his breath still too deep and too loud for a composed person.
He can’t tell how much time passes simply staring down at Dino, incapable of everything, including crying. Especially crying.
He can’t stand the sight of his wide back anymore and eventually bends down to hold him, refusing to admit to himself that he is dying to look at his husband’s face one more time before accepting that, just like during his childhood, he has been deprived of what — or better who — he loves.
But as if all that hadn’t been cruel enough, even though Hibari’s is holding Dino’s head in a way that the two are facing each other, he can’t actually see his face. Not because the Cavallone has been disfigured to that point. It’s like looking at a cropped picture but Hibari can’t put it into words, not now. Neither he can keep his composure anymore, his rage and grief getting out of control, his shouts echoing in the whole room - and yet he still can’t hear his own voice.
The next thing Hibari knows is that he’s sitting on a soft surface, in cold sweat and panting. A dim, warm light is giving shape to a set of fancy furniture, very much different from the minimalistic kind he found in the Japanese room.
Kyouya, the Kyouya in question hears, but for some reason he processes the voice as distant. His eyes still pointing at an indefinite spot in the room.
"Kyouya," now the voice gives the impression to be much closer, other than pretty panicked, even though Dino has been sitting next to Hibari since earlier. "Are you okay?"
Hibari looks at him as if he couldn’t explain why Dino is there in the first place. (Understandably so.)
"You let out an awful yell and jolted awake. I’m worried." Dino can perfectly tell by himself that he had another one of his usual nightmares, but Kyouya rarely snaps out of them with such a reaction. And also, it had actually been a while since his last one.
Hibari swallows and looks away. The hand that is firmly holding his own is giving him enough proof that this is reality. That Dino is right there.
With the adrenaline rush gone, all Hibari feels is exhaustion. He’s not sure he’ll fall back asleep that night, though.
"I need water," he utters, but he doesn’t make any movement that prompts he’s going to get some. Dino is going to do it for him, but Hibari stops him. Some years in the past he’d have been reluctant to admit to himself he needed that presence. Now he’s almost asking for him to stay, in his way — hence not asking at all, at least not with words.
Dino smiles gently as he watches his husband sink back into the pillow, then does just about the same.
Hibari’s eyes are shut but his frown suggests he still hasn’t completely relaxed. He feels Dino’s ringed hand caressing his cheek, then moving down to his waist. The warmth of that hug doesn’t feel uncomfortable, and he hugs him back.