As they walked in silence and the mansion came into view in all its magnificence – extravagant and yet so intimidating, - Yuu could easily notice Mika flinching, before stalking closer to his side, brushing their shoulders together and lowering his head, staring at the ground.

Yuu instinctively took the blond's hand and squeezed it reassuringly. Mika didn't take his gaze off of the ground, but Yuu could feel him relaxing slightly. The ravenette smiled to himself, knowing that at least he was there for Mika and that he would help him through whatever the future awaited.

About that… The smile vanished of his face and he gripped his free hand, also tightening slightly the hand holding Mika's on accident, causing the blond to finally look up at him, questioningly. Instead of looking back at the other boy, Yuu stared at the silver haired vampire's back, who was walking just a few feet ahead of them, his pace not unlike the one of a top model on a catwalk, and it just annoyed him all the way more.

If looks could kill, Ferid Bathory's head would've already exploded from the sheer hatred emanating from Yuu's stare alone. He finally spoke up. "Why do we have to stay with- with you?"

Yes, he had asked this before and, yes, he had gotten his answer from the queen herself. He had even already somewhat resigned himself about his predicament, but seeing Mika in so much distress caused his hate and stubbornness to come back in full force.

He stopped walking and so did the other two. Mika looked at him with concern. Ferid turned around slowly, a smirk clear on his face. How can someone be so annoyingly… cheerful?

"Oh, I thought this had been already explained, but ok," Ferid shrugged, while Yuu still stared at him without moving an inch. "Well, the queen is a very busy person, and probably because I was already involved in the problem," he then held one hand up to the side of his mouth, covering it as in a lame gesture of secrecy, "you see, what she did was something very wrong and that she would rather keep as a secret," and he dropped the hand and went back to full joyfulness, "so she picked me to babysit the two of you for now!"

Yuu groaned in frustation, this answer being far from what he expected this confrontation to go. But Ferid went back to his marry way, completely unfazed and practically skipping on his way.

He then turned around to face Mika, ready to rant some about how irritating the noble was, but he completely forgot about it when he noticed the blond's distant expression and furrowed brows. He was concerned at first, but soon relaxed when he realized that he was just deep in thought.

"Hey, Mika…"

"Uh?" The boy turned to face Yuu, still somewhat absently.

"You were spacing out just now," Yuu pointed out.

"Oh," he raised the hand that previously held Yuu's to rub the back of his head, finally seeming to snap out, "I was just thinking about what Ferid had said-"

"Oh, don't waste your time thinking about this stupid idiot", Yuu snapped, annoyed once again.

"What?" Mika asked confused, but realization finally deemed on him. "Oh, no, I wasn't thinking about the babysitting part, I was wondering about what he had said before, about what Krul had done to us being wrong."

Then it was Yuu's turn to be confused. "What do-"

"You two, aren't you coming?" They heard Ferid asking in the most annoying singsong voice, already far away down the path.

Yuu groaned once more, pondering if he should just say 'no' and turn around, but Mika just sighed and took the ravenette's hand once more, surprising him. "Let's go, Yuu-chan. We better follow him."

And Yuu let himself be led by the blond, who had already went down this same path tons of times before.

The moment Mika passed through the doorstep, all the memories of his previous trips to this mansion came rushing back to him, all the time that he willingly came down this path and made his extra blood donation on his own free will. No, he did not do this for free, and he had a clear goal set in mind, but he couldn't help being ashamed of all the times that he had given his blood to the Noble and of the unwanted pleasure that he felt in the process, which felt absurdly intimate and just plain wrong.

But before he could go even further into these poisoning thoughts, Yuu-chan's 'wow' of amazement caught his attention. He was confused for a second, but then it hit him. Oh, right. All his memories tainted his view of this place, so he forgot for a moment how impressive the mansion actually was.

Everything was so lavish and finely decorated, every detail - from the intricate tapestries to the renaissance paintings on the walls - was extravagant and expensive.

Mika had expressed a similar reaction when he had first come to the mansion, being it the first time that he had ever seem something so luxurious in his life, even before the virus had been spread and they had been taken to the filthy part of the underground city, in which the vampires kept the livestock.

"You can appreciate the place all you want later, as you're going to be staying here for a while." Ferid probably didn't meant much with these specifics words, but it started to fill Mika with a sense of dread. "But for now, I think you two might need a bath."

That, on the other hand, suddenly made Mika self-conscious of his current state. He felt sticky with sweat, his hair was a huge mess and completely dirty, and a dried pool of blood still stained his not-so-much white shirt. A look on Yuu-chan made him realize that the other boy was in a similar state, with the difference that only some blood coated his shirt – probably from Mika lying on top of him – and more of the red liquid covered his black hair to add to the mess.

"Well then, follow me." With a bit of apprehension, Mika did as the silver haired vampire had said, figuring that Ferid wouldn't be up to anything else for now, and also because he just really needed that bath. He looked back to be sure that Yuu was also following them, which he did after a moment of holding his shirt and staring at it as if it was its own fault to be dirty.

He looks just so cute sometimes.

Ferid lead them down the hall and into a bedroom close to the far end, on the right side. It was fairly big and just as luxurious as the rest of the house, although not as extravagant as other rooms, probably being some sort of guest room. It had twin beds and, surprisingly – or not so much actually – there was also a bathroom connected.

The bathroom was also quite big, but that's not what caught Mika's attention. No, it was the huge, round, bathtub on the corner. Mika kept staring at it, probably gapping, while Ferid opened the tap to fill it, right before turning and leaving the bathroom, just as Yuu arrived, glancing up at him as he passed through the doorstep.

"Hey, what are you lo- wow look the size of this bathtub!" His eyes might as well have been sparkling as he practically vibrated in excitement.

"Here," both of them looked back as Ferid entered the room once more, putting two white towels over the sink. "I will look for some shirts for you, tomorrow we find more suitable clothes. Have fun with your bath!" That said, he left the room and closed the door, leaving both of them alone.

They glanced at each other, a blush creeping its way to their cheeks just by the thought of bathing together. Mika started to turn around, going towards the door. "Uh, you can go first, I'll just w-" he started to say, but Yuu was quick to cut him off.

"What? No way, look at that tub, it more than big enough to two of each of us, I'm not going to make you wait outside!"

Mika blinked at Yuu's reasoning, but felt himself slowly nodding nonetheless. "Uh, ok."

Stripping down his clothes and getting into the tub was somewhat awkward, while both avoided looking at the other. It was so awkward, in fact, that Mika decided to look around the room in search of a distraction, and that's when he noticed a shelf filled with bottles and flasks, one in specific catching his attention.

"Hey, do you think it's bath salt?" He said while pointing a bottle containing what looked like pink sand.

Yuu immediately perked at that, and he grabbed the bottle, analyzing it for no longer than two seconds before saying, "Let's find out!" And he put on the water what was probably way more than necessary.

Mika just stared at him while he put the bottle back to the shelf. "Seriously?" Yuu simply shrugged.

But after a minute and splashing some water, they were proved right when they were rewarded with way too many bubbles, not that they were complaining. Actually, they even started playing like little kids, splashing water at each other and on the floor. It was pretty stupid and Yuu bit his tongue once, but they were still perfectly fine with it.

And as Yuu-chan splashed more water at him, Mika raised both hands in a peace gesture. "Ok, ok, you win, Yuu-chan", he said amidst giggles while opening his eyes, which had been closed to avoid the water. "Now come here, let me wash your hair."

The ravenette complied while he scanned through the bottles to find a shampoo. After finding the right bottle, he poured some of the contents on his hand and started rubbing the boy's hair, all while humming a song that he used to sing to the kids.

Oh, the kids.

"Mika, are you ok?"

"Uh?" The blond came back to reality and went back on washing Yuu's hair. He had apparently stopped for a moment, and that's probably what caught Yuu's attention. "It's nothing."

But the ravenette just turned around and grabbed both of his still raised hands. "No, it's definitely something. Mika, after everything, are you still trying to keep stuff from me? You don't have to carry all this burden alone, I can help you. So please, just me with this!" His voice had an edge of exasperation, and his eyes were pleading.

His heart skipped a beat. "Y- Yuu-chan! It's- It's not that I don't trust you, it's just that, eh, I don't you to worry about this-"

"You idiot. You keep worrying about everything and everyone, but who will worry about you?" He flinches at that. "Mika, you're not perfect, you can't do this alone, and you don't have to." Yuu's tone then became softer, although still dripping with concern. "So please, just tell me what's bothering you."

Mika then looked down to the side, trying to avoid Yuu's gaze. He had always kept all the burden to himself, never wanting to worry the others or putting them in danger. And even though Yuu-chan had confronted him countless times before on this precise matter, this time Mika didn't have the mental strength to dismiss his concerns.

"I… I was thinking about the orphans."

Yuu's grip on his hands softened. "See? Was it so hard to say?"

Mika glanced at him for a couple of seconds before going back staring at the water, still half filled with bubbles. One more bubble popped.

"If… if I had been able to protect them, or if we hadn't even left our house then-"

Yuu dropped his hands, instead embracing him in a side hug, which caused the blond to lose his trail of thought. Yuu never initiated this sort of physical contact. "Mika, it was not your fault. If anything, it was clearly that damn idiot's with whom we are unfortunately stuck with." He pulled back and Mika looked at him. His expression was comforting, even if his brows were still furrowed. "So just promise me that you will stop blaming yourself for something that was never your fault."

They finished washing themselves mostly in silence, and then got off the tub to grab the towels. And even though they had dried themselves, Mika's feet were still wet when he was opening the door to leave the bathroom – they had somehow managed to wet the entire floor during their bath.

But then he turned around for a moment, just to realize that Yuu was staring intently at the mirror. "Yuu-chan, is there something wrong?"

Yuu turned his head in his direction. "Uh? Oh, I was just looking, you know… these," he said while pointing at his pointed ears. But before Mika could say anything, he just turned around and left the bathroom ahead of him, leaving mini water poodles on the wooden floor. Mika followed him to the bedroom without a word.

Even though the room was wide, it wasn't so large in width, so each of the twin beds was put beside opposite walls. Yuu had chosen the one on the left, so he picked the other one. Over the bed was a dress shirt, which was quite big for him and probably covered his thighs. It would do for a pajama.

"Oi, Mika, do vampires even sleep?" Yuu asked as Mika put on the shirt. He stilled for a moment.

"I think I read once that it's not necessary, but I don't think that they would even have beds if they couldn't." Yuu nodded.

Thinking about that, it made sense them wanting to sleep even if it was unnecessary. Mika couldn't even phantom having to live for all eternity in a constant stated of consciousness. The thought made him shiver.

Mika pulled the covers and went to turn off the light, being momentarily surprised by his new night vision, and then went back to his bed, with Yuu doing the same.

"Goodnight, Yuu-chan", even as he said that he was pretty sure that it was still morning, probably around 10am, but he paid no mind to that.

"Goodnight, Mika." Yuu replied.

And he closed his eyes.

He really did think that, as soon as he closed his eyes, darkness would creep on him and take him to unconsciousness and that maybe, just maybe, when he woke up, he would realize that it was just a bad dream and everyone would be very much alive and well.

But he was proved wrong when a few minutes had already passed and he was still pretty damn awake, maybe because he couldn't even sleep after all and would have to deal with it for the rest of his now painfully long life, or because Yuu-chan just wouldn't stop turning to and fro on his bed, making Mika unable to concentrate on anything else.

He was about to address the other boy when he just suddenly stopped and loudly groaned. Mika then sat up, eyes half lidded – not because he was tired, though – and asked, "Is there something wrong, Yuu-chan?" He was half concerned and half expecting a headache out of this.

"It's so annoying!"

He stares nonchalantly. "What's annoying?"

"The eyes!" Yuu said as if it's the most obvious thing. Mika blinked and raised an eyebrow.

"Yuu-chan, you got to be a bit more specific."

Yuu made a frustrated noise. "It's just that- it barely makes a difference if the lights are on or not, I can still see every freaking thing!" He said-yelled while gesturing wildly with his hands.

Mika sighed. "Then just close your eyes," he said simply.

But the answer didn't seem to satisfy the ravenette. "It's not just that…" He murmured, but Mika had no trouble understanding him.

"Then what is it?" He then said in a more tender tone, starting to realize the other boy's problem.

Yuu sighed. "It's just- ugh! Everything is wrong. Not just, uh, me, but… the room too! It's cool and stuff, but it just feels too wide, too fancy and comfy… It's not really how it was supposed to be." Then he just rolled around and laid with his back on him, staring at the wall.

Mika felt a pang on his heart. He rarely saw Yuu-chan looking this defeated, he was always strong and ranting about the most absurd things, not letting the problems get to him. And even just a little while before, while Mika had his own little breakdown, Yuu-chan was there to try to bring some sense to him. So seeing him this hopelessly now felt way too wrong.

He had to fix this.

Mika stood up and headed to Yuu's bed, only being acknowledged by the other when he raised the sheets and climbed on the bed beside him. "Hey! What are you doing?"

"Didn't you say it was too wide and comfy? Well, I'm making this all crumpled up."

"Idiot, it's too narrow for both of us!"

"But Yuu-chan, you're so skinny!" A smile made its way to Mika's lips as he thought that anything was worth it if he could see that adorable blush on Yuu-chan's cheeks.

But as seconds stretched into minutes and they still hadn't found a confortable position, Mika started to rethink his decision. "Uh, I think you might be right, maybe I should…" But before Mika could stand up and go back to his own bed, Yuu stopped him.

"Wait a second, let me just…" And he held Mika and changed their positions so they were spooning, with Yuu being the big spoon. Mika felt his cheeks heating up, but he soon relaxed as he felt the comfort in being embraced by Yuu-chan and having their legs tangled together.

It was almost automatic and felt so right. All the distress, worry and self-loathing that Mika had been feeling for the last couple of hours started to drip away, being replaced by a feeling of belonging – even if only for a little while.

"Goodnight, Mika," Yuu said once more.

"Goodnight, Yuu-chan," and as he said these words this time, he could feel his consciousness fading away.

When Yuu woke up, they were still in the same position, with Mika still sound asleep in his arm. Actually, Mika was extremely still, worryingly so. His breathing was shallow and the beats of his heart were too far in between, and Yuu thought that there was something wrong at first, but then he realized that the blond's heart rate was just as slow as his own.

Uh… It might be just a- a vampire thing then.

Mika was turned to the other side, so Yuu couldn't see his face, being faced with a mass of blond, curly hair instead. After a moment of hesitation, Yuu brought his hand – the one that wasn't circling the blond – to Mika's hair, fiddling with his locks.

Only a few minutes passed before Mika stirred in his arms. Yuu retracted both of his hands as the other boy turned around, becoming face to face with him. "Morning," Mika said in a somewhat groggy voice.

"Morning," Yuu replied, right before knitting his brows together. "Talking about morning… What time is it exactly?"

Mika furrowed his brows as well. "I don't know… But I think I've seen a room that had this tall, wooden clock with some details in gold and stuff," Mika said, half distracted and dragging on the words.

"So you saw a fancy clock?" Yuu resumed.

Mika nodded. "Yeah… I think I'm going to check it. Hold on." And so he stood up slowly, with Yuu sitting up on the bed as he did so, watching as the blond left the room. Yuu then sighed and stood up, going to the bathroom, which was still filled with a fair amount of water poodles.

The ravenette went to the sink and looked at himself on the mirror that hang over it. His now dry hair was a total mess, sticking to all possible directions. With a groan, he started brushing it with his fingers, doing a fairly good job, except for one specific strand of hair that just wouldn't go down. After fighting with it for a while, he eventually gave up, being done with his hair.

His attention then moved to his face, and he flinched when he saw the reflection of his own eyes, still green, but now slitted. Then he quickly turned his gaze towards his ears, which stuck out of his somewhat combed hair. He hesitantly raised his hand, touching with his finger the pointed tip of his ear. It felt weird.

And then his eyes went to his mouth. But, rather then opening it, he reached with his tongue to his teeth, accidently getting it pricked by the keen tip. He winced with the sharp pain and stuck his tongue out to look at the tiny hole that had already started to heal.

Pain aside, Yuu recoiled his tongue and opened his mouth wide, looking at the fangs themselves. The two on the bottom roll were visibly sharper than a human's canines, even if they were fairly smaller than the ones on the top roll, even if these were retracted in the moment.

This was the inspection that he was about to do after their bath on the previous day, but had opted to leave it for another time for Mika's sake. Not that Yuu himself was ok with their situation, but he couldn't help feeling somewhat… curious. Well, maybe that wasn't the best way to describe it, but for a lack of better word… Anyway, Mika, on the other hand, was certainly drowning in too much self-loathing to relate with Yuu's curiosity. And Yuu was trying his best to somehow make the blond get over it, but he wasn't exactly good at th-

"AH! Get off me!" Yuu forgot everything as soon as he heard Mika's scream, clear as day.

The next think he knew, he was running, and in just a few seconds he found the blond. On the other side of the mansion. "Mika, what is it?!" He said as soon as he entered the room, only processing the situation after spilling these words.

Mika, stunned by his sudden entrance, looked at him wide eyed with his hands raised to his hair. By his side was Ferid, one hand halfway stretched towards the blond and the other holding a plastic bag, and a smirk stamped on his face.

"What's happening here?!" He was the first to break the silence, his words practically setting the others back into motion.

"Oh, nothing much, I was just greeting dear Mika!" Ferid said as he moved his hand to reach the other boy, but Mika slapped his hand away, right before lowering both hands and closing them into fists.

"I told you not to touchmy hair!" And he started glaring at the taller vampire.

Yuu walked away from the doorway and to Mika's side, joining him at glaring at Ferid, who just seemed to ignore them.

"Anyway, I got some clothes for you!" He said while raising the plastic bag that he had been holding, before offering it to the two.

Mika hesitantly took the bag. He opened it slightly to peek inside, and Yuu noticed him stilling for a fraction of seconds before closing the bag again. "Thank you…" He murmured without looking at the silver haired vampire.

Then he took Yuu's hand and led them out of the room. But when they were passing by the doorway, Ferid called again. "Oh, and Mika-kun," and Mika stopped, even if visibly reluctant, "you two can take that off," the vampire said as he gently pulled his own red ribbon, as to illustrate what he was saying.

Yuu's hand instinctively moved to his neck, feeling the familiar material of the collar. The livestock collar. His eyes widened momentarily. He had grown so used to the collar that he had completely forgotten that he was even using it. But before he could muse more on the matter, Mika started pulling him once again towards their bedroom.

Once they got there, Mika closed the door behind them and went to his bed, turning the bag upside down and emptying its contents.

Yuu reached and picked up one white shorts. It was of a much finer material than the ones that they had as a livestock, and it was also shorter, ending in the middle of his thighs, as it seemed. Yuu turned to Mika, seeing how the other held and stared at a white button up coat with sleeves just long enough to reach the elbows, much similar to the uniform that they had seen some of the vampires using.

Yuu sighed and dropped the shorts on the bed, then proceeding to take the coat from Mika's hands, causing the other to look at him questioningly. "Look, there's also a black shirt," he said while picking up a button up, short sleeved shirt.

Mika looked at the new shirt, his brows still furrowed. Then Yuu's gaze lowered to his neck, where the blond's fingers gently pulled at the collar, as if it was giving him a choking sensation.

"Here, let me…" Yuu trailed off as he reached for the other's collar. Mika looked at him questioningly at first, but understanding became apparent on his features as soon as Yuu started to fight with the damn thing's clasp.

After a minute or so and some cursing, Yuu finally freed Mika from the brand, and tossed the collar on the bed. "There you go!" he said with a triumphant smile on his face.

Mika massaged his neck for a moment, his gaze – distant and pensive – on the tossed collar. "Thank you," and then he went to do the same for Yuu.

Yuu could feel Mika's soft and warm fingers brushing against his skin as he struggled with the mechanism, although for not as long as Yuu had. And as soon as the offensive thing was out of his neck, he could feel the relief washing over him.

"Thank you, Mika."

"No problem, Yuu-chan."

"Oh, by the way, what time is it?" Yuu asked as he turned to look at the blond.

Mika stilled, his face paling as he replied, "I don't know."

Half an hour or so later, already dressed – just the black shirt and shorts, they ignored the coat and belt – and still having no idea of the time, they decided to leave the room, just to have Ferid popping out of nowhere and start screaming "Look how cute you two look!" And then they thought it would be for the best to just stay inside their room.

Two days later, as soon as he woke up, Mika realized that the dull ache on his throat had turned into a painful burning sensation, and he knew what this meant, as well as the fact that Yuu-chan was going through something similar, even though neither would acknowledge that.

But they did leave the room anyway and, per usual, Ferid didn't take long to show up. And it only took him one look at them to know exactly what was going on. "Follow me, you two," and he lead them to the kitchen without saying a word. No jokes, no teasing.

Mika was almost glad for his mindful silence. Almost.

When they arrived at the kitchen, Yuu and Mika sat on the stools by the counter, while Ferid got around to get to the fridge. He retrieved two vials of blood and poured the contents on two glasses. The smell assaulted Mika's senses immediately, and he was almost lunging towards the glass when Ferid offered them to the two boys. But then a thought struck him and he stopped himself mid movement.

"Is it- is it human?" He asked uncertainly as Ferid positioned the glass in front of him. Yuu already had his glass in hand, ready to drink, Mika's question being the only thing to stop him.

In that moment, Ferid, who had been wearing a neutral expression this entire time, flashed a wide grin, with fangs and all, and said in a dizzyingly sweet tone, "Of course not!" And then he just turned around and left the room in a swift motion, leaving Mika gaping.

And that's why Mika would never let himself truly believe in any act of kindness coming from that crazy bastard: because he was always the first one to remind him why he shouldn't be trusted.

Mika slowly turned around and faced Yuu, who seemed pretty much confused. The two stared at each other for a moment before Mika finally break the silence, "Was he being sarcastic?"

Yuu then shrugged and said, "I sure hope not." And then he did the last thing Mika would have approved him doing: he simply took the glass once more and turned it, drinking everything in one go. Yuu drank it in such a haste that some of the blood flooded and dripped from the corners of his mouth and down his chin, being licked clean as soon as the glass was empty.

And, for the second time in less than two freaking minutes, Mika was left gaping. Yuu then simply laid the glass back on the counter and dared to look at Mika with an expression that clearly asked 'What?' in all its innocence.

Mika intently stared at Yuu for a while longer, just until he was sure that nothing was going to happen. Yuu's eyes remained an emerald color and nothing seemed to change. Ferid wasn't lying then.

The blond then mentally counted to ten while massaging his temples. He sighed. "Yuu-chan, sometimes you can be so… inconsequential."

"Eh?" He even looked a bit indignant right before turning his head to the opposite direction, avoiding looking at Mika. Mika just rolled his eyes, more than used to Yuu-chan's antics.

He then took his own glass, staring carefully at the scarlet liquid. It was almost hypnotizing, with the overwhelming smell that made it all the more tantalizing. He felt his fangs nip at his bottom lip and the venom start to drip. For a moment, he wondered just what monster he had become.

To crave such thing…

But there was absolutely no avoiding. And, with a defeated sigh, he turned the glass, tasting the luscious flavor of the cupric substance that invaded all his senses and entered his system, blissfully quenching his thirst and subsiding his pain. He greedily drank each mouthful of blood, being nearly impossible to stop, and when the glass was empty – too soon – he almost wished he had more.

He laid the empty glass on the counter, staring at it for a moment, before seeing something from the corner of his eye. He then turned around just to notice that Yuu-chan had been staring at him this whole time. It was his time to ask, "What?"

Yuu flinched and immediately turned a cute shade of red – a completely different shade from the blood; it was sweet, innocent, far from being sinful – and turned back around. "N- nothing, you idiot!"

Mika felt a smile tugging on his lips – crimson and stained with blood.

Even if they were all too aware of how painful it was to go even one day too long without blood, it didn't stop them from avoiding it until they couldn't anymore. And it was just one week later that they learned their lesson.

That day when he woke up, Mika could practically smell oh so sweet blood permeating the entire mansion, and he could swear he could hear the faint sound of beating hearts.

That's it, it's been gone way too far. One look on Yuu-chan – who was restless on his bed – told him just how disturbed the boy really was. Without dwelling further on the matter, he just stood up, got dressed and headed to the kitchen, Yuu in tow.

As he got closer, the smell only seemed to get stronger and the quick beating of a human's heart louder, and it was driving Mika insane. It was only when he turned the corner to enter the kitchen that he saw it, causing him to stop dead in his tracks.

Inside the kitchen were two girls eating by the table. Mika took a sharp intake of breath – which only caused him to inhale more of that honey smell. Through the little clarity of mind that he still possessed, he wondered how funny it was that, even though he had been one of these kids to visit the Noble's mansion himself, he had completely forgotten about them.

Thinking about that, he hadn't seen a single human on the mansion since their arrival, which probably meant that Ferid had forbidden their visits for the sake of the two of them. But it seemed that the pervert couldn't stay that long away from his weird fetishes.

Yuu-chan, who had been behind him, went to his side, freezing as well once he saw the girls. By then, the two humans seemed to notice them, and not just that. If the way that they flinched was anything to go by, they had also noticed that Yuu and Mika were not human, while having their heartbeats speeding up as fear stroke them like it should.

Mika could feel his fangs elongate and start to drip with venom. He took one step towards them and the delicious smell that emanated from them. But then he felt a hand gripping tightly on his wrist, preventing his progress. His first reaction was to try to free himself, but the grip only got stronger. He was getting desperate, he just needed to reach them, his prey, to-

"Mika!" He froze, Yuu-chan's voice momentarily bringing him back to his senses.

When he looked again at the two girls he realized that they were clinging to each other, expressions twisted in horror and on the merge of tears. And he had been the one to cause it.

Shock and shame bubbled inside him, and he dropped his gaze to the floor, unable to face the human girls, who seemed no older than what Akane was. He clutched the fabric of his shirt on the spot above his heart, wanting desperately to leave the room, but being unable to do so, the smell too luring to let him go.

Yuu-chan's hand moved from his wrist to his hand, and he led Mika inside the room, to the opposite way that the girls were and towards the fridge. Mika did not raise his head at any moment, feeling the stares of the girls piercing him as he heard Yuu opening the fridge.

When Yuu offered him one vial of blood – the smell not as good as the fresh human blood just beside them – he noticed that the boy's hands were shaking. Mika looked up to see his face, noticing that his smile, although sincere, was faltering.

Mika gulped, feeling so utterly weak. Even though Yuu-chan was suffering just as much and fighting his own internal battle, he was still able to control both himself and Mika, who had temporality lost to his sickening desires.

The blond took the vial and frantically drank Krul's blood, sweet and soothing. And once the burning on his throat had subsided, his mind was no longer hazy and there was barely any crave mixed up with his self-loathing.

Yuu looked relieved himself, and when he took Mika's hand once more to lead them out of the kitchen, his grip was softer and his hands were no longer shaking.

Mika stopped by the doorway, gaining a confused and slightly concerned look from Yuu-chan. Mika summoned all his strength to turn around and face the girls, who had been too afraid throughout this whole ordeal to even flee.

He took a deep breath and said, just loud enough to be heard, "I'm sorry," and he ran with Yuu back to their room, without waiting for a reaction.

They resigned themselves to stop postponing drinking after that.

It was just a couple of hours after Yuu and Mika had woken up. Even though they didn't really needed to sleep, they kept doing that every day – yes, day, as they found out when they finally remembered to check out what time it was – because they silently agreed that it was a way to keep a small sense of normalcy. And, just like the first day, they kept sleeping in the same bed, even if not right away, they would eventually go to that arrangement.

And in that moment they were both sitting on Mika's bed reading a book that each had picked up on the library on the previous day.

At some point during their first week stuck with Ferid, they had decided to take advantage of their situation and use their free access to the Noble's library. This was the room that they most frequented, with exception of their own room, and only avoided going there – or anywhere at all – in the following days to the previous week's 'incident'.

It was just three days prior that they had summoned the courage to go back there. The kids there seemed uneasy, and so were they, so they just made their visit as short as possible.

The second time they had gone there was pretty much the same at first, but then they saw a little kid, maybe eight years old, trying to reach for a book in a higher shelf, without succeeding.

And then Yuu watched, somewhat shocked, as Mika headed towards the boy and picked up the book for him. The kid seemed shocked as well, but then he took the book from Mika with a "Thanks!" and a smile.

When they left that time, Yuu noticed, with some satisfaction, that Mika was smiling as well.

Yuu was turning another page of his book when he heard footsteps heading down the hallway. Once their room was in the far end of the hallway, kids didn't usually head their direction, so that fact perked his attention immediately.

But he did not expect, though, that the kid would stop right in front of their door and, after a moment of apprehension, knock it. Yuu exchanged a curious glance with Mika, without really knowing what to do.

A couple seconds passed and they heard yet another knock, this time more certain. "I- I have a message from Ferid-sama." A faltering, girly voice came.

Yuu watched as Mika stood up after a moment of consideration and headed to the door. Without opening it, he asked "What message?" His voice was soft, as to not scare the kid more than she already was.

The girl took a deep breath and said, this time barely faltering, "He said to tell you to get dressed and meet him by the door, he's waiting."

Mika blinked. "Ok, thank you." And the girl left running.

Yuu stood up and walked towards Mika, who had his brows furrowed, pensive. "I wonder what Ferid wants with us…" he trailed off, looking at nowhere in specific, deep in thought.

"What do you think it is?" Yuu asked.

Mika looked back at him. "I don't know, but he hasn't asked for us to leave up till now, it must be something important then…" Yuu nodded.

So they quickly got dressed on their full uniform and left the room. On their way to the entrance they passed by some kids, who kept staring at them. Some of them had calculating eyes, others were apprehensive, and just one or two looked sincerely curious.

The walk took less then a minute, but all the attention that they were receiving made it extremely uncomfortable, so much that Yuu almost felt relieved when he saw that bastard's annoying face.

Ferid stood by the opened door, talking to other two vampires, one with purple hair and the other with black hair. In the moment that the two of them approached the group, the silver haired vampire turned towards their direction with a wide grin in place. "Mika-kun, Yuu-kun, we were waiting for you! And look how c-"

Yuu groaned on the prospect of being called 'cute' once again, but Mika saved him of the pain by cutting Ferid off. "Yeah, Yeah, just… what do you want?"

Ferid had his mouth shut, barely containing a grin. Yuu practically could listen to him thinking 'how cute!' He snorted. "Well, I've got some things to do and it's probably going to take a while. So Lacus and René will take care of you in the meantime!" He said while gesturing to the other two.

"We don't need to be babysat!" Yuu angrily spat.

"Oh, but of course you need! The queen said so herself, she doesn't want you two out of sight," he then flashed yet another smirk, and Yuu could feel his blood boiling, "but look at the bright side, you can walk around for a bit, get some fresh air!"

"We are on the underground," Mika stated with a 'so done' expression.

But Ferid wasn't shaken on the slight by his remark. "Even so! It's been what, a month that you don't get out of here?"

"Two weeks and a half," Mika's correction went ignored.

"Anyway, I need to go now, have fun, kids!" And he left the house.

Yuu blinked and Mika sighed, before finally returning their attention to the other two vampires that had remained silent throughot the whole exchange. The shorter one, the one with purple hair, waved at them while flashing an amused smile, while the taller one just rolled his eyes and looked at the other side while wearing a tired expression.

Yuu groaned for the third time.

"I thought we had a deal," the human angrily stated as soon as Ferid arrived.

"Hello, for you too."

"I'm not here for jokes. You said you were getting me a Seraph, and I waited for five hours without seeing a single one." As he said that, he unsheathed his katana, pointing it just a few inches from the vampire's face.

Ferid raised both hands in a peace gesture. "No need for animosity. You see, I was going to deliver your precious Seraph, but things took an unexpected turn and I was unable to do so."

"Oh, really?" The human had his eyes narrowed.

Ferid hummed in agreement, completely ignoring the threat carried by his tone. "The subjects are now being watched in a close eye by the queen, and it won't be easy for me now to sneak them out. Trying to talk to her at the moment is also out of question."

"Ferid Bathory, I am leaving the two under your care for the time being, only because I don't want any other lower ranking to look after my two Seraphs... And because it's your mess to clean."

"Of course, your highness-"

"But don't be a fool, try anything and I'll be off with your head. I've warned the guards, and if they notify me of anything suspicious coming from you, you're done, Bathory. No more excuses."

"My, my, you sure is worried! But don't worry, Krul dear, they'll be in the best of cares, for sure."

"But don't worry, there's still another option!" Ferid continued, shaking off the memory.

The human retrieved the katana and sheathed it once again. "Keep talking."

The vampire smirked. Now we're talking business.