Sup! InsanityPushedMeOffTheEdge here! Thankyou to everyone who was concerned over poor Yamamoto. If it was an upsetting scene then it means I did it right! Even tho I felt bad for him too….
Apologies for any crappy spelling in this chapter and any previous/future ones! I don't have a beta and I'm usually too excited to post the next chapter to properly proofread it ;P Sorry!
Also, I sincerely apologise for the long-ass wait but I can't help it! I just take ages to write.
Disclaimer: Despite wishing upon a star numerous times, I still do not own Katekyo Hitman Reborn.
Chapter 6: You&Me Darling
It was hours after the final customer had left and Yamamoto Tsuyoshi had not stopped worrying about his son. Takeshi hadn't spoken a word to his father after an incident with dropped food. His face had remained sombre and somewhat impassive for the remainder of the day. Usually, Takeshi kept up a face of false cheer; Tsuyoshi didn't know which look sickened him more, the obviously fake happiness or the abundantly clear depression.
Despite all protests otherwise, Takeshi helped Tsuyoshi clean up the shop for the night. Afterwards he turned to Tsuyoshi with a look that churned his stomach.
"Can you teach me how to use the sword?" Tsuyoshi scrutinised his son for a moment.
"No." Takeshi reeled back in shock.
"B-but Dad… why?" Tsuyoshi, distressed, shook his head. He didn't want to tell Yamamoto the reasons why, Tsuyoshi knew it was information his fragile son might not be able to take.
"Tell me, Dad. " Takeshi whispered with a sharpness that told Tsuyoshi that Takeshi would not back down until he had heard Tsuyoshi's reasons.
"I can't" Tsuyoshi replied in a tone firm but worn.
Tsuyoshi made no move to leave or get closer to his child, sensing a divide between them.
"Is it because I'm weak?" Takeshi spoke, voice hardening and warping the longer he did so. "Is it because I'm not strong?! Because I'm a weak-willed coward?! A good-for-nothing who couldn't even protect himself, let alone others!" Takeshi screamed into the air, frustration boiling over as he continued to mock himself.
"It is none of those things!" Tsuyoshi screamed back at his son, desperate to end the words coming out of his son's mouth. "Strength has nothing to do with learning the sword! It's all about purpose!" The words flowed from his mouth before he could stop them. "You are not capable of being a skilled, honourable swordsman the way you are now. You have no goals, no determination, no loyalty. I refuse to teach someone so unstable!"
Taking a deep, shuddering breath, Tsuyoshi immediately regretted his words. "I'm sorry." He spoke once more, quietly. "Goodnight Takeshi." He would not take back his words.
Shock, anger and resentment ran deep within Takeshi's body as he watched his dad's weary back. He felt like a scolded child, frustrated and unable to do anything about it. Quickly, it all drained from him as he thought over his father's words. Who in this world would he fight for? And who would fight for him?
He ran up into his room and slammed the door shut. Curling up into a ball, Takeshi cried into his knees. The feeling of solitude weighed down upon him.
As the weeks went by Yamamoto's emotional state continued to deteriorate. At first he started turning up late to baseball practices, which were irritating him anyway because no matter how hard he tried, his pitching and batting was getting worse. He became angrier and consumed himself in self-hate. He started fights with delinquents and eventually, even the local Yakuza.
On the surface he kept his plastic smile but started isolating himself from his father and his so-called friends. Who, he quickly noticed, only cared about the fact that Yamamoto was no longer the stellar baseball player they wanted him to be.
His nightmares about his Mother's death and Amami's kidnapping became longer and more frightening than before. It was so bad that Takeshi had bags under his eyes and was bordering on being an insomniac.
He thought about the two often, his Mother and Amami. He wondered what his Mother would say if she saw him in this sorry state. Would she hold him close and rock him back and forth like she did when he scraped his knee as a kid? Or would she scold him for letting himself become like this?
Amami too, he often gazed across the classroom to the sleeping figure of the girl he finally recognised after all those years. He daydreamed about what it would be like to be friends with her, a part of the tight-knit group of people who she had celebrated her birthday with.
He didn't doubt that Amami could've been a true friend. Unlike all the people who befriended him because of his looks or sports skills.
Amami wouldn't care about any of that; only looking at who he was as a person. He longed to become one of her precious people, but believed that he didn't deserve the chance to walk up to her and try to be friends.
He didn't think of himself as worthy.
So here he was, stood atop a small grassy hill near the edge of Namimori. A gun stolen from a Yakuza held firmly in his shaking grip.
He stared at the cold, black piece of metal that would easily take his life in a couple seconds. It was heavy in his hands and glinted harshly in the radiating Sun.
Slowly, he raised the lethal object. Placing the muzzle in his mouth, Takeshi took a deep breath. The metal grated against his teeth and he could taste a cool, metallic tang on his tongue. His finger trembled as he placed it on the trigger.
"What are you doing?" Startled, Takeshi ripped the gun from his mouth and turned to face the person behind him as he held it tight in his grip.
Amami's deep-sea eyes observed him calmly, almost frigid in their lack of emotion. Yamamoto Takeshi flinched as he stared into the blank eyes of the girl he had been yearning for to look at him with warmth and kindness.
Her sharp voice cut through his thoughts. "Don't you want to live?" He blinked, surprised he spoke at all. He shook his head.
"I-I don't think it's worth it." Amami was startled by the amount of agony and honesty in his tone.
"I don't understand." She spoke softly. "Life is always worth living."
Yamamoto became a little angry at that. She didn't understand, no one did.
"You just don't get it!" His voice cracked at little and the anger was replaced with desperation. "How it feels to lose someone that your whole life depended on. How it feels to be utterly worthless and alone! E-ever since she died, I've felt like I was alone. And no matter what I do it just doesn't get better!" Yamamoto's face scrunched up in anguish. "And I hate myself for just watching it happen. And over the years, I was stupid enough to believe I was getting better about it, you know? Because those strangers at the funeral had told me that with enough time, I'd stop feeling the loss, I'd stop crying every time I thought about her. And they were kinda right, I can't cry anymore when I think about her. And a part of me has always hated that. But I thought it meant I was moving on."
He paused and had difficulty starting again. "But then I saw you being taken away. It all just came rushing back and I-I just feel like such a goddamned idiot. I don't want to feel like this. I hate it so so much."
Amami's gaze widened at his words, and she felt like the worst person in the world to have ignored his even once. He was suffering because of things out of his control and she had been selfish enough to disregard it. Mentally smacking herself, she swore to help him even if it killed her. It was the very least she could do.
Moving close, she wrapped her arms around him from behind and dragged them both to the ground. He tensed in her arms and after a long, long while, he turned his head and sobbed dry tears into her shoulder.
At no point did she let him go.
I stretched my legs out on either side of Yamamoto's as he rested his head on my shoulder, exhausted.
"Yamamoto?" He turned his head towards my neck. "Do you wanna play a game?" He made a curious noise in the back of his throat.
"We'll have fun together, I promise. But it can be very dangerous sometimes; especially in the future." I could feel him frown into my neck.
"I'm not sure I understand..." He said in a quiet voice. Gently, I ran my hand through hin short, brown locks.
"It'll be a game that we play in real life. Us and our friends against enemy teams. And we'll have to fight, to protect eachother. People will get hurt, and some will die." He began to raise his head but thought better of it and laid it back on my shoulder. Twirling a lock of my hair, he asked,
"Do we have to play this game?" I sighed.
"I have to, yes. Because of forces outside my control. And the people I'm around get dragged into it too. So it's fine if you don't want to play, but that means…" I trailed off and he gripped my lock of hair. I was giving Yamamoto an option to not be apart of the dangers I would live in. Despite the fact that the mere idea of letting Yamamoto go was killing me inside. I'd become very, very attached in the few hours we'd spent hugging on the grass.
"I want to be your friend, even if that means having to play this game." He mumbled hesitantly. I broke out in a closed-eyed grin and nuzzled his cheek. Playfully, he tugged on my hair to get my attention.
"What is it called?" He questioned, distractedly flicking my hair around.
"The Mafia Game." I replied.
Amami lay back on the grassy hill and took a deep breath, closing her eyes. Takeshi quickly joined her, relaxing to the feel of the hot Sun on his skin, the cool breeze through his hair and the warm body beside him. He smiled when he felt her snuggle up into his side.
What must've been hours later, I woke up to a deep blue and orange coloured sky.
I smiled when I noticed what position Takeshi and I were in. In our sleep I had managed to curl up into a ball with Takeshi curled around me, his arms wrapped around my shoulder and middle.
Smiling again, I gave him a light poke to the cheek and moved my mouth close to his ear.
"It's time to wake up Yama-chan" A few seconds passed before he registered what I said. Snapping his eyes open, he blushed when he noticed our position and how close my face was to his but gave a small grin.
"Morning Amami-chan." I rolled my eyes in amusement.
"More like night time, Yama-chan." His blush darkened but he made no move to move his arms from my body or his face away from mine.
"Yama-chan?" I winked cheekily.
"Would you prefer Take-chan? Or Shi-kun?"
"It's been a long time since anyone but my dad called me anything but by my last name so I prefer those to Yama-chan." He replied both bitterly and hopeful.
Taking a brief moment to relax against the slowly brightening and comfortable boy, I leaned up and gave Takeshi a quick peck on the cheek.
"It's time to go, our parents are probably worried." Nodding, the rosy-coloured teen languidly moved his limbs and stood.
After taking Takeshi's hand in mine, we began our trek back home.
"Yes Take-chan?" He turned his head towards me slightly.
"How did you know I was here?" I tilted her head upwards and gazed at the sky.
"Intuition?" I saw him raise an eyebrow but he fell silent once I turned my eyes towards him.
"Does… this mean we're friends now?" He voiced uncertainly. And it broke my heart to see him so vulnerable.
"Of course. Now and forever." I told him with an irrefutable determination. He simply nodded and smiled as he turned his head away.
The door creaked as Amami opened it. Ushering Takeshi in, she shut it quickly. Swiftly, she moved into the hallway and shoved her phone in Takeshi's hand before nudging him towards the direction of the kitchen.
"Call your father." Seeing his hesitant nod, she grabbed his hand. "It's okay. I'm staying with you."
Having a friend was so amazing.
I gulped as the phone rung and tightened my grip on Amami's hand. Looking into her unwavering gaze for a few seconds, I brought the phone to my ear.
"Yes?! This is Yamamoto Tsuyoshi speaking? Have you found my son Takeshi?!" Guilt reared its head in me as I listened to Dad's panicked voice.
"Hey Dad it's me."
"Takeshi!" Relief flowed through the phone. "Where have you been! I was so worried!"
"I'm sorry Dad. I tried to do something stupid. Someone stopped me though, and I'm so glad she did. Can I tell you what happened tomorrow? This isn't the sort of thing to talk about over the phone." I heard him sigh.
"Are you safe Takeshi? Are you happy where you are right now?" Glancing over to Amami and then our entwined hands, I replied.
"Yeah I am."
"Then I'll see you tomorrow. I love you, Takeshi." He sounded so weary, I silently apologised for being the one who made him like that,
"I love you too."
I smiled at Take-chan's tired demeanour. Taking his hand, I lead him up the stairs and into my room. Gently, pushing him towards my bed.
"Sleep." He blushed when he realised we'd be sleeping together but otherwise didn't argue.
I threw him some of Tetsuya's spare pyjamas for when he slept round mine and turned away as I made quick work of my own clothes. Slipping on one of Kyoya's shirts, I waited for a couple of minutes before facing Takeshi once more.
Giving him a small smile, I nodded my head towards the bed. Hastily, he got in, swiftly joined by me. I felt him arms encircle my waist and snuggled into him.
His breathing evened out near immediately. I took a few more moments to enjoy his warmth before I too dropped off the edge of consciousness.
I awoke to the near unnoticeable sound of sobbing. Takeshi's arms around my waist were gone and it made me feel cold. Cracking an eye open, I noticed he had moved to the other side of my bed and was dry heaving into his forearm.
Blinking in worry, I shifted closer and hugged him. He let out a gasp, stiffening in my arms. Slowly, he moved his arms from his face and looked me in the eye. His eyes were red and panicked.
"Shh, it's alright. Everything is alright." His face scrunched up in a mixture of fright and relief. Pulling me even closer, he continued shake. I rubbed his back in comforting circles.
Some time later, Takeshi spoke, his voice muffled by my shoulder.
"I-I had a dream." His whole body flinched.
"It's okay." I soothed. "You don't have to tell me until you're ready okay? Why don't we get some rest." He gave a tiny nod and gripped me tighter.
"Promise you'll still be here when I wake up?" His voice was small and weak, like a lost child.
"I'll definitely be here. Promise." I watched him fall asleep and continued to watch long into the night.
When Yamamoto went home the next day he came upon a sleep-deprived and worried father. A pang of guilt ran through him at his dad's bedraggled state. He hugged his dad for what felt like hours and they leaned on eachother for support as they both cried into the other's arms.
Takeshi apologised profusely for being so foolish.
Tsuyoshi merely grinned at his alive son; the euphoria he got from the knowledge his son was still breathing and healthy and not dead, was indescribable.
Amami stood outside, wanting to give the two space. She grinned at the sound of Tsuyoshi's joyful cries.
Patiently, she waited for the two to gather their bearings so she could go inside and introduce herself.
"Dad." Takeshi pulled away from his dad so they could face eachother, but kept a firm grip on his arms.
"Yes Son?" Tsuyoshi took a moment to wipe his eyes so he could properly look into his child's serious brown depths.
"Will you teach me how to use the sword?" Tsuyoshi raised an eyebrow as he searched Takeshi's eyes for a shred of doubt, fear, hesitance.
"Have you found a reason to learn?" Takeshi's eyes took on a steely glint of determination before melting into the happiest look Tsuyoshi's had seen in years.
A bright and most importantly real smile broke out on Takeshi's face. Tsuyoshi was stunned.
"I did Dad. I met someone who I can proudly call my friend. She's a little odd and has a mean type of humour." He admitted, hands twitching as he resisted the urge to rub the back of his head. "And I know that I'll follow her to the depths of Hell and back again. She saved my life Dad. I'll forever be in her debt."
Tsuyoshi's face slackened in surprise at the admission. Immediately he felt gratitude at whomever this mystery girl was, thanking her for being able to do what Tsuyoshi couldn't. But at the same time, he felt sorrow. He was teaching his son how to kill, and he had no doubt that both Takeshi and his mystery friend would have to.
"I'll teach you." He said without regret, despite the fact he had always wanted to keep his precious son away from the bloody life that always followed the picking up of a weapon.
If anything, Tsuyoshi could only be glad it was because Takeshi wanted to protect someone else, not to just kill meaninglessly.
Tsuyoshi slid a critical eye over the matching grins of the girl and his son. She was a small thing, rather curvaceous. Quite beautiful. He could already see Takeshi's crush forming and inwardly chuckled. He very much approved.
From what he could gather in the last half hour he had sat and chatted with her, she was… not kind per say, in fact she was actually quite self-serving. But at the same time not. She cared deeply for her family and friends and placed their needs above anyone else's. Conversely, she didn't have the slightest care about people that weren't apart the aforementioned group.
She had told him without hesitation, about how she first interacted with Takeshi. It was heartbreaking to say the least, listening to both Amami and Takeshi's sides of the story.
He was ashamed for being unable to help Takeshi when he needed it.
But now Amami cared for him, and Takeshi looked better than he had for years. Watching the two interact lightened Tsuyoshi's heart, it was obvious that they were already very close.
They also told him about The Mafia Game. It tore at Tsuyoshi's heart to know that the life he had fought so hard to run away from would consume his own son and his only friend.
The only thing he could do was teach them all he knew and hope it was enough.
He desperately hoped it was enough.
Omake: My Time In Italy With XanXan: A 'Little Prank'
"Now Amami-chan! Papa has to sign some boring paperwork but he will be much less bored if you come and help him!" Iemitsu said with a bright grin, as if he hadn't already asked this question twenty times before in the last half hour.
I pouted stubbornly and crossed my arms.
"No. I'm going to spend the day with Xanxan!"
"What?! Amami-chan why would you rather be with that ruffian than your own Papa!?" He dropped onto his knees in depression. I rolled my eyes.
"'Cause he's better" Iemitsu burst out into full-blown tears and grabbed the hem of my shirt. In the corner of my eye I saw Xanxan turning the corner into the hallway I was in as well as a few maid attendants dotted here and there. Looking down at the annoyance below me, a devilish thought popped into my head. Taking a deep breath, I screamed.
"Hentai! Pervert! Somebody help me!He's trying to take me away to his disgusting, creepy, kink lair!" I started crying loudly, as if my scream hadn't brought everyone's attention already. The maids gasped in horror and rushed to my side, pulling me away from Iemitsu, consoling me as I sobbed into their arms.
Xanxus on the other hand looked livid. His wine-red eyes rippled with anger. Knowing that Iemitsu was my Father did not help in any which way. Slowly, he raised one of his X-burners and pointed it at Iemitsu's face, who had already gone white with shock and terror. The maids gave him a few choice insults whilst Xanxus spoke only one word.
Iemitsu looked towards me, disbelieving of his situation. I smirked at him over one maid's shoulder and gave a cheeky wink. He was frozen until he heard the click of Xanxus' gun. Then he sped off down the hallway in the blink of an eye.
Xanxus turned to me, anger still in his eyes but they softened considerably when he checked my body for possible injury. I gave him a wicked grin.
"I'm fine. Go ahead." Xanxus returned my grin with his own bloodthirsty twist of the lips before he headed in the same direction Iemitsu had only moments before.
So that's where Tsuna got his girly scream from.