This feeling was a new one.
That was all it was, a feeling.
It didn't include any thinking or speaking, because the pain didn't allow Kaoru that much.
It hurt, to put it bluntly.
It was the kind of pain your body wants to reject, but can't because the pain is too strong, too combative, too persistent to cause you harm.
The kind of pain you can't remember afterward because your mind doesn't want to.
The initial shock of the pain left Kaoru breathless, his eyes blurring with yellow and red, his mouth filled with blood.
His fingers twitched and his toes were burning so hot he could have believed they were ablaze.
His entire body was screaming in agony.
He blinked to clear the spots from his tear filled eyes and saw a flash of metal approaching the exposed skin of his neck
Not again, please, please, not again…
He leaned back and bowed his head, clenching his teeth as terrified tears rushed down his trembling cheeks.
Kaoru wanted to die.
Tama rocked forward and back, forward and back.
He had been wrong.
Now he would have to listen.
He had been wrong.
His eyes grew wet as he let guilt and shame engulf him.
His IPod wouldn't be loud enough.
"Snow." Haruhi said, holding one hand out to catch a perfectly formed flake.
She blew it back into the air and watched it sail away.
The snow made her sad. She knew that both Hikaru and Kaoru adored the snow.
She was sitting on a log next to the van, which was stopped at the side of the street. The van held the rest of the host club. It was too muggy in the van, and Haruhi had requested they pull over for a quick break so she could clear her head.
She couldn't take being around the rest of her friends any longer, partly because it was exhausting, but mostly because she could keep her tears back anymore.
She allowed them to fall from her long lashes, tracing wet tracks along her face.
She hated crying, especially in front of other people.
But she couldn't help it. She was scared, terrified, of losing the twins.
She cleared her throat, trying to dissipate the knot in it.
Now she had to be strong, she had to suck it up and help the twins with everything she could offer.
She had to keep the host club in good spirits.
The twins had been gone for almost a day.
Anything could be happening to them...
Haruhi stood and wiped away the wetness, breathing in heavily.
She glanced at the van and realized with relief that nobody had seen her in her moment of weakness.
She pulled on a hopeful face and opened the door to the van, climbing inside with her welcoming friends.
Kyoya nodded to her and turned back to the windshield. He was in the passenger seat, next to a police force driver.
He thought what he had just witnessed was curious indeed.
He had sometimes considered Haruhi a bit ignorant, and even a bit unfeeling.
But to see her cry was difficult for him, perhaps because he sometimes saw a little of himself in Haruhi.
She had never really shown her emotions openly before.
Maybe, like him, she was just being strong for the sake of her friends.
"You're so stupid. You're a coward, a worthless coward. Why can't you do anything right?" Tama whispered to himself while sitting on his bed, hiding his head in his knees. He had abandoned the IPod when it stopped blocking the sound out and was now listening to the heart wrenching screams of that poor boy, that innocent boy.
Tama jumped up from his bed with a yell. He stormed over to where his lamp was lying on its side and picked it up.
He threw it against the wall with a deafening crash.
"WHY?" He screamed, reaching up at his hair and pulling it. He collapsed onto his hands and knees. His eyes seeped warm salty tears and his nose started to run as he allowed himself to sob.
Why was he like this, so scared, so selfish?
He pounded at the floor, throwing a tantrum like fit. He shook his head back and forth, his tears staining the carpet.
He hated himself.
Yet he didn't do a damn thing to change what he hated.
Hikaru couldn't breathe.
He was exhausted and he was beaten. His hands were bruised and bloody, his head ached, and he had probably broken few toes, because his feet were throbbing with horrible pain.
Kaoru had to be getting worse.
He was still screaming that horrible scream, the scream that Hikaru despised to hear.
He wondered if Kaoru was dying.
Hikaru collapsed onto the floor and clenched his bleeding fists.
He winced and clamped his hands over his ears as his brother screamed again.
Only this time it was cut short.
Hikaru froze, expecting the worst.
He jumped up and shoved his hand through the mail slot, trying to see what had happened.
Everything was quiet.
He couldn't hear the doctor talking, Kaoru, nothing.
The doctor didn't go too far, did he?
Hikaru's heartbeat fluttered to an alarming rate as he watched the bathroom door slowly creak open. Sweat dripped down his face as he watched the doctor come from the room, back first.
Dr. Hirato turned around and Hikaru gasped as he spotted his baby brother lying limp in his arms.
Kaoru's not…he's not…
"WHAT THE HELL DID YOU DO YOU SICK BASTARD? I'M GOING TO MURDER YOU!" Hikaru bellowed through the mail slot, regaining his strength. He tried to jam his arm through the slot but it didn't fit.
He wanted his brother back one way or another. He rammed against the door, screaming at the top of his lungs. He punched, kicked, bit, and crashed against the door, but the lock held firm.
"LET ME OUT!" He screamed.
"SHUT THE HELL UP!" The doctor bellowed just as loud. Hikaru froze, shocked. The doctor was really pissed off.
Hikaru realized he should listen to the doctor, since he was carrying his brother in his arms, and in doing so, carrying his life.
Dr. Hirato could take it whenever he wanted to.
"Sit against the back wall of the closet. Now!" Dr. Hirato barked at Hikaru. Hikaru closed the mail slot and followed his instructions.
Dr. Hirato moved forward and rolled something through the crack of the door. Hikaru picked it up. It was a little test tube with Styrofoam rap at the top tied with a rubber band to keep the liquid inside. The liquid was runny and honey colored.
"Drink it." Dr. Hirato said forcefully. Hikaru hesitated. Then he ripped off the plastic wrap.
"Drink it." He growled again at Hikaru, glaring through the slot. Hikaru put the glass tube to his lips and drank. It tasted terrible, but that was the least of his problems.
He stood and stumbled unsteadily to the door.
"Give Kaoru back." Hikaru said, falling onto his hands and knees. Whatever the drug was doing, it was happening quickly.
Hikaru heard the click of the door lock and it swung open to reveal Kaoru on the floor outside the closet. The doctor pushed him into the tiny room with his foot.
Hikaru crawled over to his brother, noticing strange burns across his neck, and the fact that he was soaking wet.
"He isn't dead?"
It was more of a plea than a question.
"Not really." Dr. Hirato said, with a twitch of the mouth. He wasn't smiling as often anymore.
"What the hell is that supposed to mean?" Hikaru growled, but he fell onto his stomach before he got an answer. He could no longer move his body.
He was once again paralyzed.
"I'm hoping you might stay conscious a bit longer. Kaoru's a pretty one, but he's not very tough. He can't stand pain worth a damn and he threw up all over my shoes. Disgusting." Dr. Hirato hissed vehemently. Hikaru glared at him with a passion, since he had lost his ability to speak.
"Who knows," The doctor said with the slightest smirk, "Maybe you'll be my new favorite."