Disclaimer: The characters and the VK world belong to Matsuri Hino.
Chapter 1: Feeling lost
My head was terribly splitting as if someone had just banged me with a big hammer. My hands ran on the hair, pulling it roughly, but the harder I tried, the worse my condition got. It felt as though I was going to explode. Helpless. There's no way to stop it.
I started out of sleep all of a sudden, bathed in perspiration, my hands were really holding my head. But the temperature in the room wasn't that hot, I felt strangely tired with no reason. Too dark to say what time it exactly was. I sluggishly sat up, the blanket slipped off my naked body. Ah, so dizzy! I shook my head a little, trying to get better, and waving to switch a lamp on. This was a hotel room, quite nice and tidy, except the bed where I was on. Extremely quiet, no doubt I was alone now, but I wouldn't be able to create such a rumpled bed on my own. Who had been with me? It's really a bad headache, I couldn't remember anything. Wait, I meant everything, not only why I was staying in this hotel. The idea got all my hair stand on end, what the hell was going on? Why didn't I know my own name, my job, and my home address? What happened to me?
I jumped down to a pile of clothes on the floor, assuming they were mine. Nothing in my jacket and shirt, I didn't bother to look at the underwear, there must be something in my trousers. Thank goodness, a cell phone and a wallet. No missed calls and two new messages.
"Zero, are you free tonight? I really miss you."
Sounded like a girlfriend, however, her number wasn't saved in my phone list, I wasn't sure what the relationship between us could be. But if she sent this message, it meant she didn't meet me last night. At least I knew my first name now.
"Thank you, son! I'll see you tomorrow." From Kaien Cross.
I checked my 'Sent' folder and found a message to him "Happy Father's day! Are you coming back tomorrow?" Was he my father?
There were several credit cards and VIP club cards in my wallet. Here it was, my driving license with a picture of mine.
Full name: Zero Kiryuu
Permanent address: xxx xxxxxxxx xxxxxx xxxxxx xxxxx
My last name wasn't Cross. Perhaps I wasn't his son, but did love him as my father. We really needed to talk as soon as possible. I read those vital information of mine over and over, trying to learn them by heart. It's giving me a chill, realizing I didn't have any tiny idea of myself. My memory was all empty, today was like the first day I'd been born. What had happened to me? Was it an accident or a conspiracy? If someone wanted to have my memories erased, why didn't they kill me instead? Well, it would be their fatal mistake, I was going to disclose the truth behind all this and get them paid dearly.
The phone on the nightstand rang, this world started interacting with me.
"Good morning, Kiryuu-san! I would like to remind you it's about time to check out."
I grabbed my supposed watch nearby to check the time "OK. I'm getting ready."
I wasn't planning to stay any longer. I knew my enemies wouldn't be coming back here, they must have finished whatever they wanted to do to me last night. It's time for me to do my things. I stood up, entering the bathroom.
Could I say it's the first time I'd seen myself in a mirror? I didn't really remember my looks, but I felt very pleasant, my whole body was fine, no symptoms and marks of any injuries. When I was soaked in water, I figured my best part sticky. Yeah, a young man had no reason to spend a night alone in a hotel. But the person who had stayed with me was a prime suspect, especially when she left while I was still sleeping. She hardly left anything behind to help my investigation.
I tried to ask who my companion was but the receptionists had no idea. My being a regular customer was another thing I found out, perhaps they didn't pay attention to the different girls I came with each time. Luckily, I signed by instinct, but it turned out to be my correct signature. So the check-out was settled smoothly and I walked out of the hotel. I wanted to go home, but what if they're the perpetrators? I hoped not, anyway my wallet and phone were left to me for a reason. If I hid from them, I would never find out my past. Someone called me when I was about to cross the street.
I turned to the voice and saw a middle-aged man with glasses and his long hair tying into a tail walking toward me, he looked pretty easy-going, his smiling face had no precautions, "What are you doing here?" His smile disappeared after he glanced at the hotel "What did you do last night?"
Ha, it sounded like he knew me. I examined him carefully, but my damaged memory refused to tell me who he was. "Hm, you know who I slept with." I smirked.
"How should I know?" He got confused and somehow mad "It's not a healthy lifestyle, Zero! No bed is better than your own one at home. You've already had much more luck and responsibilities than an ordinary man."
He's acting as a father admonishing his son, which gave me a feeling that we're very close. However, I wanted to test more.
"Which side are you on?" According to him, I was married and he wanted me to stop sleeping with other women. My question could be understood that I was asking about who he would support between me and my wife. But he would think I was suspecting him, if he's involved in the plot of erasing my memories.
"If I was on Kaname's, I would've already killed you." He glared at me "You used to be a very good boy. I don't know what changed you. Be responsible, son! And be my pride!"
It looked like I had disappointed him a lot. I really felt guilty and sympathy with him. He called me son, was he Kaien Cross? It's not easy to have a debauched son, and his debauched son had forgotten him. "Where are you going to?"
"I came back last night. Now bringing a box of tea for a friend near here. Later I'm going to the headquarters to give some to you and Yagari. Takuma kept reminding me to buy it, he said you like this kind of tea."
So he didn't take part in what had happened to me. He just came back last night and was surprised to see me here. He was disappointed at me, but still cared for me. My heart told me he's not lying, and I should trust myself. "Are you Kaien Cross?" I asked sincerely.
"What? Are you kidding me?" His eyes widened behind his glasses.
"I'm sorry. I think I've lost all memories. I don't remember Kaname, Yagari or Takuma. I don't even remember who I am." At last, I showed my uncertainty and vulnerability to him.
He stared at me in shock for a while. Suddenly he held my wrist "Go with me!"
Kaien Cross dragged me to his home, inside Cross Academy. He asked if I got injured or anything, but I assured him that I was quite fine, except for the loss of memories. I couldn't find a familiar trait in the place where I had stayed and studied before. It's terrible.
We sat with a mug of coffee for each and he started telling me about my past. My name was Zero Kiryuu, 23 years old. My parents had been killed, my twin brother - Ichiru Kiryuu disappeared on the same day, Cross took me in and brought me up.
"Who killed my parents?"
"Ehhh… Do you believe that vampires exist?" he asked cautiously.
He's afraid I would think he's crazy, but I didn't find it ridiculous at all. "I've seen some outside. I am one too." I said calmly. It's nothing wrong with it, when I saw someone, I would know whether he's a human or a vampire as easily as telling male or female.
He was relaxed "Oh, that's not bad. I was worrying about how to explain all this. Your parents were killed by a pureblood vampire named Shizuka Hio. Do you have any idea of vampire hunters?"
Well, if there were vampires, there should be vampire hunters. Cross said my family had been vampire hunters from generation to generation. We used our hunter powers and weapons to fight. I was a hunter too, even though I had been turned into a vampire by Shizuka. With his and my mentor – Yagari Toga's support, I had become the president of the Hunter Association. However, two sides were working on living peacefully together. This academy, where both humans and vampires came to study, was a proof.
"I forgot all of my powers, as a hunter and a vampire." I felt and smelt like a vampire, but I wasn't aware of any special abilities in me.
"Don't worry. We're not in war anymore and I'll give you a gun." Cross shook my shoulder to assure me and sipped his coffee.
"Father…" he paused, then put his mug down, his eyes flashed happily bright as if my word cheered his heart. I continued "What kind of person am I? Am I an unfaithful and irresponsible husband? Don't I love my wife?"
Cross signed, "I did ask, but you've never told me why. What are done are done, I only hope you won't continue in the future. Try your best to take good care of them."
With no memories, I didn't understand his advice thoroughly, anyway I guessed my marriage was very bad now, and it's seemingly my fault. Why had I done what I had done while I was having a feeling that I wanted to be a good man with a sense of responsibility? Did the loss of memories change my personality too? Or something had happened between my wife and me? "Please tell me about my wife."
"You two studied here and got married after graduation. His name's Kaname Kuran."
"Excuse me, you said 'his'?" I cut in.
"Yes, he's a male. You sense you're a vampire but can't sense your sexual orientation?"
I was astonished. Cross's story became somehow unreasonable, I didn't discriminate against homosexuality, however, it's not what I was feeling about myself.
"It's not right." I shook my head.
"Oh, that's what Yagari and I said when you informed us you would marry him." Cross raised his voice, his madness was very sincere "Yagari almost killed you but you said you would abandon us, abandon your position, abandon everything to go with him if we didn't change our mind."
The atmosphere sank in silence. My headache returned to swing my mind. Should I trust him? Should I go to my house and find it out by myself? What if it's true? Should I use the loss of memories as an excuse to walk out of this unusual marriage? Oh, I'm thinking as an irresponsible husband!
"I'm not fooling you. I have your wedding photo." Cross left the room, then got back to hand me a photo.
There were many people, but I focused on the two guys in the middle, who wearing similar black suits and red bows, their hands entwined to each other. One of them was me, smiling, and the other must be Kaname, his brown hair curled lightly, hugging his neck, his eyes sparkling under delicate brows, and his smile was enchanting. He's absolutely gorgeous, however, he's a male. I suddenly got a weird feeling.
"You said you didn't accept us." I saw Cross and another middle-aged man, probably was my mentor, in the photo.
"We gave in at last. You're our son after all."
My attention returned to the gorgeous man's image. Not feeling love or lust, but somehow I didn't want to hurt him when fondling his beautiful face by my eyes. Was it my sense of responsibility? Kaname looked very happy on our wedding day, both of us did. "If I didn't come back, he would be sad."
"Not only him. Five of them would be." Cross grumbled.
"After marrying Kaname, you seduced and married all his close friends. We didn't know why you did that, but we're speechless." Cross explained "They're there too. Let me show you."
He put the photo on the table and pointed each of my other partners to me. Gentle Takuma, charming Hanabusa, solemn Akatsuki, youthful Senri, one similar trait was they're all breath-takingly handsome.
"Hold on, how can I do that? Marrying the same-sex and many of them?"
"It's not legal in our current law, but you all are vampires and it's eligible in the vampire society."
I was dumbfounded. I had already hurt Kaname. I had gone against my foster father and my mentor to marry him, then betrayed him. Suddenly I thought I wasn't going to see his smile when we met again, and it saddened me.
In general, the me that I had forgotten was a male having five male partners at home and still sleeping around with the others. It's almost certain that the one I stayed with last night was also a guy. "I feel that what I truly want is a normal family with a wife and children."
Cross widened his eyes, then shook his head "We'll find a way to regain your memories first, then you'll decide it later."
I stayed at the academy a few days so that Cross would fill me up all necessary information. He also showed me my old room and many pictures since I had been a kid to my graduation day. I walked along the school yard, visited the classrooms and met with several teachers who had taught me before. Nothing revoked a piece of memory. We decided to limit the fact that I had lost my memories within a group of trustworthy people. Yagari-sensei had gone away before I had a chance to meet him, but he heard the news and hurrying his job up to come back.
Cross suggested me staying with him until I retrieved my memories, but I wanted to go home. My situation seemed to be a result of a conspiracy which was involved in a supernatural influence. It would need a lot of researches and experiments to undo it, but I didn't want to hide and wait until that day, I must start correcting my life and investigating who the culprit was. He finally agreed with me and called my partners to inform my current condition as well as the fact that I might have turned heterosexual and asked them to treat me carefully.
A couple of hours later, Minori came to pick me up. This hunter was my courtier, Cross said I could trust him completely as his grandfather was one of the trio of senior hunters, and he had personally known him for a long time.
"Kiryuu-sama, five masters are worrying to death since hearing your news. All of them have skipped work to wait for you at home." The boy said. He's about nineteen or twenty years old, good-looking for a teenager.
I was also worried, wondering how to deal with five at once. It's scary to think about all of us living under the same roof. It wouldn't be like a husband with many wives in the old times, would it? "Is there a schedule that says whom and when I'll sleep with?" I murmured.
Minori chuckled "No schedule. You just decided in a whim."
"Do I have my own room where I can stay if I'm not in the mood for anyone?"
He didn't answer me, but burst into laugh "Have you really turned straight?" Was it funny? How couldn't I lift my lips?
The main door was open, everyone gathered at the lounge, waiting for me. Now I could see them more clearly in person, they looked even more beautiful than in that wedding photo.
"Welcome home, Zero-san!" Senri cheered heartily, making me feel pretty awkward, knowing it wasn't a greeting from a brother or a friend.
"We're glad that you've come back safe." A warm smile from Takuma. His tone sounding like a sincere friend calmed me down a lot. I hoped they would go easy with me as I was trying to get to know them all over again. I smiled back to him gratefully.
"Have you really forgotten us? Do you remember anyone else?" It was Hanabusa, his eyes glaring at me. He looked jealous and I really felt sorry for both - all of us.
"I don't remember anyone." I would be honest to them from this moment onward. It's a promise I had made after decided to come back home. I wanted to apologize to each of them for my unfaithfulness and give us another try. Even though there was no satisfaction and happiness with the situation, I wouldn't play an irresponsible husband. Before making my decision, I would like to learn about my reason for having married to them.
"Welcome home." Akatsuki whispered, not showing any special expression as if we're merely acquaintances. How had I hurt him?
My eyes turned to the last one who didn't say anything. He was standing opposite to me with a distance, and had observed me since I walked through the door, but kept silent. I wanted to hear something from him. Although I forgot all feelings, he's the one I had said I would leave everything for. I had been thinking a lot about him. If I hadn't married him, I wouldn't have married the other four's. What brought us together? How had we fallen in love? Why did he accept me to marry more?
My eyes still stuck with his. The silence between us got 'all of their attentions. I was about to break it, but suddenly couldn't find my voice. A strange feeling jolted in my heart when a teardrop waveringly fell down his face. We stood still, our images reflecting in each other's eyes, somewhere from the bottom of my heart rising an urge to wipe his tear off, and tenderly say to him "I'm home.", but I hadn't enough courage to do it, my feet obstinately remained unmoved, though my mind was yelling and my heart was melting. Kaname eventually got my hesitance and turned away, I also took my eyes off.
Posted: 17 May 2010
Revised: 15 December 2012