Hei didn't get the obsession with them kissing. It wasn't something he'd ever even thought about, and yet whenever they were forced into a ballroom setting, a crowd inevitably gathered to demand a kiss. He'd been on the run with Yin for about a year, and though their connection had grown and she'd become a staple in his life -he hardly entertained the idea of them being together like that. Well… maybe a little- but any possibilities had been ruled out.

Yin had changed, of course but she couldn't feel that, and even if she ever figured that out, her devotion would never be for him.

Still, having to put on public performance was an issue. So he'd suck in a deep breath and pucker up whenever he needed to. His senses would linger on the memory of her skin near him, of her hair between his fingers and taste of the punch pulling off her soft, soft mouth. -It wasn't that he liked it…! It simply had to be done. A few minor exceptions had to be made if they wanted to survive

In the beginning they'd keep things short. Oftentimes giving nothing more than a lingering peck. If things got a bit too hairy Hei would turn to Li and simply chuckle nervously as he flushed red. In fact, he tried to avoid large events altogether, attention was the last thing they needed if they ever wanted to fully escape the Syndicate alive.

Just as he was getting comfortable navigating such lavish parties, an older man in his mid fifties leaned over to talk to him.

"That's quite the pretty little thing you snagged there,"

"Um," Hei still wasn't entirely comfortable talking about Yin as if they were really together. He might've been on the path to redemption now, but he still didn't think he deserved a reality so pleasant.

"No wonder everybody wants you to give 'em a show. You've got good chemistry."

Hei nearly let an incredulous 'What?!' slip past his teeth, but he knew better. He'd been playing the game for years, now was the time to act. "Haha, yeah. I'm glad you think so."

"I mean real good." Hei tried to lean away as the man spoke. "Sometimes it looks like there's nothing in that girl's head... But she really blossoms next to you."

"Uh, okay." Hei made a fist under the table. 'Dick.' That man understood so little of the world of contractors and dolls, and yet there was nothing in Yin's head? Fuck off.

"You two should really get into the business, I would love to watch you tongue her down."

'What the fuck?!' Hei wanted to punch him, but that would hardly fall in line with the Li persona He'd set up for all these people. "I have to go find my wife," He spoke curtly.

Though Hei refused to tell Yin about the incident, they both agreed to take a break from Balls for a while.

Even then, Hei couldn't stop thinking about what he'd said about their chemistry. What was everyone else seeing that he couldn't? Though the thought of that creep made Hei sick, he had to admit that they did get singled out more often than not. It happened to other couples, but it followed them to almost every outing! And if what he said about Yin blossoming beside him was true… then he didn't want to take that away from her.

A big piece of him had begun to adore Yin, and not in any of the ways that applied to a platonic partner.

He wanted to ignore it, tell himself he didn't care either way. But a part of him couldn't help but hope...


But as time went on, Hei couldn't confidently say he remained consistent in his methods. The kisses grew lengthier. He would press his mouth hard against hers and bite down on her lip as hard as he could without hurting her. His hands would find her hair, her hips, her back, her face, -and they wouldn't stop roaming until satisfied.

If asked for an encore he'd comply without hesitation, growing more and more heated as the seconds ticked on. At times he'd peek at her and see her pinkened face and her eyes closed as though she were in utter bliss, and he'd kiss again without the peoples' demand. He'd tell himself after that he was only trying to sell it, but in truth, in those moments he'd been praying for time to stop, begging for just a second more of her lips on his.

His wariness of the grand setting subsided, and he began to look forward to such events. Even going as far as seeking them out on more than one occasion. He couldn't help it, Yin didn't seem to mind… it was keeping them safe after all. And if he got to touch her like that for even a moment longer, then how bad could it be?

It wasn't until one fateful evening that Hei knew something was off. Something in him had shifted, changed. So absorbed in the night, he nearly missed the first sign. -He couldn't stop touching her. When she asked his help with an elaborate bun, he tangled his fingers in her hair- thinking of nothing other than its soft texture and sweet smell. When he finally finished he ran his fingers down the back of her neck. With his light longing touch willing to explore. His hands fanned out and curled around her shoulders.

He leaned in close to her ear, the room softened and warmth filled them both. Unwittingly, their closeness gave away to their secrets, reveal all they kept hidden; a confession love and affection. Of need. Finally, he whispered. "Do you want me to zip you?"

"Mmh," She moaned. Hei let out a heavy breath, letting his fingertips slide down the bare skin of her back before zipping up her dress. He kissed her shoulder blade and she cooed, -thrilling Hei further.

"You look wonderful." He spoke softly, kissing her again. Only this time he opened his mouth slightly so she could feel the gentle press of his tongue on her skin. She 'eep!'ed. He froze. His entire face shined with a redness not even Li could pull off. He stepped away. "I'd better get ready." He said, despite the knowledge that he was completely good to go.

He splashed his face with water, trying desperately to deny the fact that he'd become the doting husband he should've only been pretending to be.

~o~o~o~

Later that night he crossed the line again.

There they were, -being singled out again to kiss… it was everything Hei was secretly hoping for. The music swelled, the lights were just right, and he was with Yin in her perfect radiant glory.

He kissed her.

Cradling her face in his hands, he stepped closer as his body filled with a need to touch hers. Her hands gripped his shoulders and a desperate whine filled his throat. A firm hand pressed onto her lower back, further pushing her against him. He wanted to be with her completely.

His tongue slipped out without thought. He ran it across her lips feverishly in hopes of dampen the deep ache running within him. It wasn't until she'd moaned softly and shivered against him had he realized what he'd done. He could almost feel her opening up to him, but he didn't care. He pulled away, his shocked blue eyes staring back into hers.

"I- I'm so… that wasn't, ...this is…" He fumbled. Shame filled her eyes and Yin looked away from him. An icy cold spread over Hei's skin like a strike to the chest. His throat went dry as he searched for something to say.

The obnoxious noise of the crowd entered his senses, and for a moment he hated them. He thought this was what he wanted, to be able to kiss Yin- to pretend for a night. But he'd really only wanted to be alone with her. He wanted whatever was between them to be real. Tracking down all these venues, finding the closest place to stay so they go out on a whim… it'd been a mistake.

Forcing Yin into these situations wouldn't make her love him. She deserved better than to be made a spectacle of these people-these cruel unfeeling strangers.

He grabbed her wrist and pulled her out from the center of the crowd, despite the jeers that now surrounded them. "I'm sorry." He apologized on the way back to the hotel.


About a month had passed since then, and feeling (a little paranoid) in need of a change of scenery, they set sail to America… hoping to be safe. Unfortunately, this timezone brought him smackdab in the middle of February. Well, not quite the middle… more like the beginning of the month. The 14th to be exact. And in this commercialized country, that meant he was trapped in Valentines day hell for 24 hours.

All the romance surrounding him, only made him feel worse about things between him and Yin. They hadn't spoken about what happened that night, but Yin seemed distant, sadder. All that blossoming the strange man spoke about seemed non-existent now. He knew he never should've taken his words to face value. Now it was weighing on him.

The perky clerk broke Hei out of his reverie. "OH! Before you go, I'm inclined to inform you that we're having a special Valentine's dinner here at the hotel so if you'd like to join us tonight-"

"Yes, absolutely." Hei completely zoned out at the Valentine's and gathered his things as he grabbed Yin's hand to lead her away.

Yin breathed a soft disappointed sigh as she stared in the direction of the clerk a moment longer.

~o~o~o~

Hei crawled into bed later that night, wanting to do nothing more than sulk until he fell asleep. He felt like a failure for some reason, like he'd just missed out on something big. But he figured that wasn't such a change, considering how bad things had gotten with Yin he guessed missing out was becoming a new trend for him.

He closed his eyes and tried not to think of the unknown pleasures she'd shown him and grand high he'd gotten just from being close to her. Her bed stood a foot away from his, and though they'd slept in separate beds before, it seemed so much worse now. Back then a certain sense of satisfaction and simmering anticipation remained, now they'd never seemed so far apart.

He sighed, trying harder to find sleep. He was close to rest, -until he heard the creak in his bedsprings and felt a weight next to him. He breathed in sharply, turning to find Yin beside him. "Y-Yin! What're y-!" She place her fingers to his lips, but not in the usual one finger 'shush' kind of way. It was the kind that said she needed to touch you.

She stared and stroked at his lips, and he stared at hers -heart pounding furiously. Her fingers slid from his lips and down to his neck. She lingered on his adam's apple and Hei fought the need to swallow nervously. "Yin," He sighed her name longingly. He knew he should back away, but he couldn't bring himself to. "...What is this?"

"For one last time," Her voice was soft, mournful. "I want to touch Hei."

"What?"

"I know you don't want me anymore…" She wrapped her arms around his shoulders. "I… I understand, I… accept it."

Didn't want her?

"Yin, I only want you to be happy…" She closed her eyes, kissing his neck softly as she held his face in her hands as if it were her greatest treasure.

"I miss the dances…" She confessed. "You don't hold me like before,"

"I- you liked the galas?" She gave an affirmative hum against his throat, making the coil in his stomach tighter. All this time, she'd been enjoying herself just as much as he had? And for the same reasons! But her eyes, something wasn't right. The look she gave him was real. -She'd hated what he'd done.

"But I thought, …on that last night it seemed like you didn't…"

Yin looked down. "No one ever touched me like that before…" She buried her face in his chest at the memory. "I tried, but… I couldn't do it."

Wait… so then, She wasn't disgusted with him! She simply thought she was a bad kisser! Which was very very far from the truth. He flipped them over, pinning her to the bed. Despite being a doll, her shocked expression seemed surprisingly human.

"Hei?"

"Forget about what happened before, Yin." For a moment she looked defeated. "I've always wanted you… I never stopped."

"Hei-!" She cried before he cut her off using her trick.

His voice hushed to a whisper. "You don't have to wait until we're at some fancy event to touch me, you can kiss me anytime."

He leaned down to give her neck the same affection she gave his. His pulse drummed in his ears but he didn't care. She wanted him. Him!

"Hei!" With her legs wrapped around his waist and her soft delicate hands running through his hair, Hei felt complete and total bliss. His lips found hers and he kissed her, totally. Without restraints. His hands gripped at her body without shame, and his tongue entered her mouth without fear. -And now that they were alone, he could let out all the loud lusty moans he kept hidden for the sake of public decency.

He could love her out in the open at last.

"Hei," Yin momentarily pulled away, "What time is it?"

He checked the clock on the side table. "11:58?"

She smiled and small smile, leaving Hei in awe.

"Happy Valentine's Day."