The Piano Trilogy

BY : Nakkinomiko
Category: Weiß Kreuz > Yaoi - Male/Male
Dragon prints: 1281
Disclaimer: I don’t own Weiss Kreuz or any of the characters—last I knew that honor went to Koyasu Takehito. I make no money from this…I just like to play with them.


 



Disclaimer: I don’t own Weiss Kreuz or any of the characters—last I knew that honor went to Koyasu Takehito.  I make no money from this…I just like to play with them. 



A/N: So, I totally should have posted this a few weeks ago, as the 2nd part of this trilogy is a Christmas story.  I’ve had this one written for a very long time, but just rediscovered it.  Please be warned, there is a yaoi lemon in this one…guys loving guys.  So if you don’t like that, please read something else.  Also, people are a little emotional and sometimes out of character, but it makes sense in the storyline.  I’ll be posting the next two parts as I get them edited and properly formatted.  Hope you all like this.



 



*****



The Piano Trilogy



Part One: Moonlight Sonata



 



It was by pure accident that their paths crossed.  Yohji might even have missed him if the woman he had been so valiantly trying to pick up at the bar had not told him she was already taken and walked away.  He watched her stroll away, a vision of black leather and nylon clad legs and rich auburn hair, a wry smile upon his lips.  And that was when a flash of familiar crimson-orange caught his eye.



What the hell . . . Green eyes narrowed as he scanned the sea of gyrating bodies on the dance floor.  He had seen it--he knew he had--and sure enough, there it was.  Schuldig!  Yohji felt a shot of adrenaline hit his system as he identified the Schwarz assassin, and he had to actively suppress the urge to check and see if his watch full of wire was still on his wrist.  What is he doing here?   And even as he asked himself the question, Yohji instinctively knew the answer.



Schuldig was there for the same reason he was--to forget for a while.



Yohji forced himself to relax, and he lifted his beer and took a drink without taking his eyes from the German.  Schuldig was dancing solo in the crowd, his eyes closed and his head thrown back.  He was dressed in black leather pants and a green silk shirt that clung to his lithe form like a second skin.  Yohji found himself staring at the German as he moved to the pounding beat.  Schuldig moved with a fluid grace that was mesmerizing to watch. 



“Shit,” Yohji murmured to himself.  He had always known that he wasn’t completely straight, but it was a very rare thing indeed for him to actually find a man that made him sit up and take notice.  He found himself more than a little startled by the realization that in that moment Schuldig had become one of those men.  Yohji could not have said why he had never noticed the German’s beauty before, save for the fact that he and Schuldig were usually trying to kill one another whenever they crossed paths.  It was the first time Yohji had ever seen the German outside a mission.  And Yohji found himself thinking that Schuldig was sexy as hell.



And perhaps that was why, when Schuldig abruptly left the club moments later, Yohji followed.



*****



I should stop this now, Yohji thought to himself.  He paused in a shadow and tried to figure out where the German had gone.  He’d followed him into the warehouse district by the bay and had seen Schuldig head for a particular warehouse, and then the German had all but disappeared.  Yohji worried his bottom lip between his teeth, trying to decide whether or not to go on. 



It could be a trap, a little voice in his head told him, and Yohji instantly dismissed it.  He had faced Schuldig in battle enough to know that if the German had known he was there, Schuldig would have turned on him a long time ago.  And Yohji had been very, very careful to keep his thoughts to himself and his body at a considerable distance from the man.  Which is why Yohji had lost him in the first place. 



Yohji quickly ghosted across the street and melded with another set of shadows cast by the warehouse he thought Schuldig had disappeared into.  Hell, I’ve come this far, might as well see it to the end, he thought to himself.  Not that he was sure what that end might be.  He was pretty certain that he was being reckless, but he’d had two drinks at the bar, and that was enough to make it so that he didn’t really care.  His libido was awake, and his curiosity had been sharpened enough that he wanted to know what the Schwarz assassin was up to alone out there. 



Yohji circled the dark warehouse once, trying every door he found, and finding every one of those locked.  Damn it!  I know he went in here!  How did he get in . . .  He circled the building again, this time keeping an eye out for fire escapes and less obvious doors that he might have missed earlier.  Again, he was frustrated when he found nothing that indicated where the German might have slipped into the building.  He was no longer sure that Schuldig had come here. 



Well, damn, Yohji thought to himself.  He sighed heavily and turned to leave.  Schuldig obviously hadn’t come here.  He stepped off the curb of the sidewalk to cross the street again when he heard it.



Yohji froze on the edge of the street and turned to look at the warehouse.  His eyes grew wide as he read the sign that he had failed to notice before:  Midikawa Piano Co.  It was barely readable in the pale moonlight, but if the piano music lilting in the air was any indication, Yohji was pretty sure he had read it correctly.  He stepped back up to the sidewalk and decided to make one last turn around the building, just for the hell of it. 



He found the broken basement window in the back of the building, and for the life of him, couldn’t figure out why he’d missed it the first time around.  Yohji was thin and lanky enough that it was almost criminally easy to get inside the window that was, for a basement window, fairly large.  He hit the floor with near silence, which was no small feat, considering the heeled leather boots he was wearing.



Darker than hell in here, he thought.  He fished a small penlight from another inner pocket in his leather jacket and turned it on.  He was definitely in the basement, and it looked like a workshop.  All around him were pianos in various stages of completion, and some were already crated for shipping.  There was everything from grand pianos to small uprights here.  The air smelled of wood dust and varnish, and it was all Yohji could do to not sneeze as he carefully made his way deeper into the darkness and towards the stairs on the far side of the room.    



He couldn’t hear the music in the basement, but as he climbed the stairs out of the workshop it started to become tangible, and by the time he’d reached the top of the stairs he could hear it clearly.  He paused and cocked his head to the side, a slight frown on his lips as he tried to place the music.  The frown disappeared after a moment and he smiled slightly.  Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata, and whoever was playing it, was really fucking good. 



It wasn’t as dark on the first floor, and Yohji snapped the penlight off and returned it to its proper place within his coat.  He waited a few moments for his eyes to adjust to the lack of light, and then he was moving again, deeper into the building and towards the music.  Once his eyes adjusted, it was easy to see where he was going.  Nearly the whole roof of the building was comprised of a massive skylight, and it was clear out, and the moon shone brightly through the surprisingly clean glass.  He silently ghosted his way around several more piles of boxes and crates, the music growing gradually louder, until he turned a corner.  And froze. 



The center of the warehouse was clear, and in the very center of that clear spot was a square platform, upon which rested a grand piano.  And at that very same piano sat Schuldig.  The German’s eyes were closed as he played, his fingers gracefully and easily moving over the keyboard.  Yohji felt his eyes prick with tears as the music flowed over him and through him.  The beauty of the music and the sheer etherealness of the German’s graceful form bathed in moonlight was nearly overwhelming.  He hadn’t been sure what to expect when he had followed Schuldig, but he certainly hadn’t thought he’d find the German pouring his soul into playing a piano. 



And it was beautiful.  Yohji had always liked Beethoven, even when he was a boy, and he had heard a lot of different people play the piece of music he was hearing now.  But no one had ever played it with the intensity of emotion that Schuldig was, and Yohji sighed at the perfection of it.



He found himself moving closer, and he silently removed his coat and lay it across the far end of the piano before he quietly boosted himself onto the closed cover.  He sat there with his eyes closed and his guard completely down and allowed the vibrations of the instrument beneath him to seep into his body and consume his soul.  Schuldig, who just had to know that he was there, played on.  After a moment, Yohji lay back and opened his eyes to stare up at the stars and the moon beyond the glass above him and let the few tears that had been pricking at his eyes slide unheeded onto his temples.   



Schuldig could have killed Yohji then, and he would have died a happy man.



Yohji lay quietly as Schuldig finished the first movement of the piece and then moved on to another composer, this time Chopin.  Yohji’s breath caught as Schuldig effortlessly performed the difficult pieces, one Etude after another, until time seemed to slip away from them and he was lost in the music. 



Nearly an hour later Schuldig stopped.  The last note of Chopin’s Etude no. 3 in E major hung in the air for seemingly endless moments before the German spoke softly.



“They took me away from my family on this day.” 



Yohji sat up and turned his head towards the German.  Schuldig still sat with his hands poised on the keyboard and his head bowed, and Yohji knew by the slight trembling he saw in the man’s shoulders that Schuldig was trying not to weep. 



“They?”  Yohji spoke the words softly.  He so desperately did not want to break the peaceful moment, but his curiosity was aroused now, and he wanted to know.



“Estet.” 



Schuldig took a slow, deep breath and unbowed his head and opened his eyes.  Yohji was taken aback at the raw pain he saw there--he had only ever seen cruelty in those green orbs. 



“The people you work for?”  Yohji said after a moment.



“I don’t work for them, Balinese.  They own me,” Schuldig clarified, his voice still quiet.  The German sounded almost like a frightened child. 



“It’s Yohji.  Balinese isn’t here tonight,” Yohji said softly.



Schuldig just stared at him for a moment before he gave a slow nod and let his gaze drop back to the keyboard. 



“Today is the day they killed my family.”  Schuldig said a moment later.  He lifted his hands from the keyboard and turned them over so that he was staring down at his palms.  Schuldig’s fingers curled slightly inward, and Yohji thought he saw a tears sparkle in the moonlight as they fell from Schuldig’s eyes into the palms of his open hands. 



Yohji waited silently, somehow knowing that Schuldig would continue if just given the time to do so.  Nearly ten minutes later, his patience was rewarded.



“I was twelve,” Schuldig whispered.  “I was studying to be a concert pianist.  They called me a prodigy, I was so good.” 



Yohji wasn’t going to argue with that.



“I lived for the music,” Schuldig whispered.  “And my family was very supportive.  My mother, my father, my older brother and sister--they all encouraged me to follow my dream.  We were a very close family.”  More minute sparkles of moonlight reflected from teardrops as the German spoke. 



Yohji still did not speak.  He wasn’t sure he’d have words, anyway.  He waited, and again, it paid off.



“Estet wanted me for my latent talent.  I still don’t know how they even knew I was a telepath--I didn’t even know it then.  Mother and Father refused to let them take me when they asked.  It didn’t stop them from getting what they wanted.  They came on this very night and took me away and burned the house to the ground.”  Schuldig’s hands fisted and his head bowed again. “I still hear their screams in my dreams, sometimes.”  Schuldig looked up, and Yohji could see dampness on the German’s cheek reflecting the moonlight.  “Usually I can forget about it, but this night . . .it’s hard for me this night.”  Schuldig paused and looked away.  “It’s hard to forget your own birthday.” 



“Bastards.”  Yohji surprised himself at the level of venom in his own voice, but he didn’t like what he was hearing.  He was getting a vague sick feeling in the pit of his stomach as his brain started to apply logic to what Schuldig was saying and came to conclusions that were horrific at best.  “Then Schwarz . . .” 



“It’s the same for all of us,” Schuldig whispered. 



Yohji swallowed the sudden bile that wanted to rise in his throat. 



“Why do you stay?”  Yohji finally managed, his voice hoarse with horror and disbelief. 



“Schwarz is strong, but not strong enough to go against the whole of Estet,” Schuldig whispered.  “They would kill us, and even though our existence is miserable, we are still human, Yohji.  We still have that basic desire to survive, no matter what the circumstances.  We all believe that someday something will happen to free us.  Until then we do what every other human being in the world does when they are faced with so much horror and so much desolation.  We hope.”  Schuldig paused and gave Yohji a wry smile.  “And we try to forget.  But I can’t . . .not on this night.” 



Yohji just stared into that green gaze for several moments before he slowly blinked, as if waking from a dream.  Something had changed between them, and Yohji found himself swallowing nervously as Schuldig slowly stood.  Yohji was no stranger to the tension brought on by sexual attraction, and it was suddenly thick in the air.   



“Has anyone ever told you, Yohji, that you are beautiful?”  Schuldig whispered.  The German stalked around the piano until he was near where Yohji was sitting upon the piano. 



“Here and there,” Yohji managed, his voice breathless as Schuldig seemed to spear him into place with his green gaze.  The air seemed to grow thicker as Schuldig drew closer, and Yohji found himself having to concentrate on just breathing. 



“Ne, Yohji?  Feel like giving me something for my birthday?” Schuldig asked, his voice a low purr. 



“Nani?”  Yohji managed.



Schuldig paused, and for a moment the anguish was back in his green eyes, and the German swallowed convulsively before he spoke again.



“Help me forget.”



Yohji’s expression softened, and he held his hand out to the redhead.



“Come up here,” Yohji whispered. 



Schuldig hesitated for a moment.  “Are you sure?”



“I’m sure,” Yohji whispered, and he motioned for Schuldig to come closer with his outstretched hand.  “Whatever you need to forget,” Yohji whispered as Schuldig took his outstretched hand and came closer.  “I don’t care what it is.” 



And he meant that, God help him. 



Schuldig licked his lips nervously as he drew closer, his fingers cold against Yohji’s hand. 



“I want to lose myself in you,” Schuldig whispered.  He stepped between Yohji’s legs and freed his hand from Yohji’s.  “I want to touch you,” Schuldig said, and he lifted his hands to frame Yohji’s face.



“Touch me, then,” Yohji said, his voice a hushed whisper.  He shivered when Schuldig’s fingers ghosted across his cheeks before moving lower to touch the skin at his throat.  Yohji closed his eyes as Schuldig’s hands dropped to the hem line of Yohji’s midriff t-shirt.  He felt Schuldig’s cool fingers ghost across his bare abdomen before they shifted lower still to touch the waistband of his jeans.  Yohji opened his eyes and found that Schuldig was watching him closely with emerald eyes. 



“I want to taste you,” Schuldig whispered, and he leaned in and tilted his head back so that he could press his lips against the pulse in Yohji’s throat. 



“Oh!”  Yohji gasped and exposed more of his throat to Schuldig’s lips, and now he felt the German’s tongue flick across his flesh in a moist caress.



Schuldig’s hands moved again, and this time he used them to gently pull Yohji’s head down so that he could capture the Weiss assassin’s lips with a slow kiss.  Yohji leaned into it, and had it not been for Schuldig pressed close against him he might have slipped off the edge of the piano.  Schuldig broke the kiss but did not move away.



“I want you,” Schuldig whispered, his breath warm against Yohji’s face. 



“I’m right here,” Yohji replied. 



Schuldig stepped away then, and Yohji tried to recover his breath as he watched Schuldig slowly open his white leather trench coat.  He stayed where he was when the German ghosted around the piano and spread the coat out over the closed lid of the instrument. 



“Undress for me.” 



Yohji shivered as Schuldig’s voice washed over and through him.  He slid from the edge of the piano to stand, and had to reach out to steady himself against the piano.  He couldn’t remember the last time he’d felt this weak in the knees.  Yohji lifted his hands, caught the edge of his shirt, and pulled it over his head.  He tossed it aside, not really caring where it fell.  He bent and unzipped his leather boots before pulling them off, and then undid the buttons on the fly of his jeans before sliding them over his hips and letting them pool on the ground beneath him. 



“Very nice,” Schuldig all but purred. 



Yohji smiled slightly as he stepped away from the pile of clothes and turned to face the German.  Schuldig’s eyes practically glowed in the moonlight as he looked across the piano at Yohji. 



“Okay,” Yohji whispered.  “Now what?”



“Get up there and lie down,” Schuldig commanded.  The German started to undress himself as Yohji lifted himself back onto the piano and did as Schuldig had told him.



Yohji sighed as he lay back on the coat Schuldig had spread out for them, and he realized that the coat was lined with silk.  It felt coolly smooth against his bare skin, and he closed his eyes and savored the sensation.



“Comfortable?” 



Yohji opened his eyes and rolled his head to the side.  His breath caught as he took in the sight of Schuldig completely nude.  The German was fair to begin with, but in the moonlight his pale skin seemed to glow with an inner luminosity that made it look as if he had stepped right from the pages of a fairy tale.  Schuldig’s body was all whipcord muscle and lean--for the life of him Yohji couldn’t see an ounce of fat anywhere on the German. 



“Yes, I’m comfortable,” Yohji finally answered.  He blinked slowly as Schuldig lifted himself onto the piano and stretched out beside him before rolling onto his side and reclining on an elbow. 



“Good,” Schuldig whispered.  He smiled down at Yohji before lifting a hand to ghost it across Yohji’s chest.  “Let’s see what we can do about making you more than comfortable.” 



“God!”  Yohji was barely able to force the word out of himself as Schuldig’s hand dipped lower and encircled his hardening erection.  He gasped sharply as Schuldig squeezed slightly before slowly running his hand down his hard length. 



“I want to taste you again,” Schuldig whispered.  He shifted and placed a kiss on the tip of Yohji’s erection before opening his mouth wide and taking it in. 



“Ah!”  Yohji’s hands clutched at the coat beneath him as Schuldig started to bob his head in a slow rhythm. 



So good, Schuldig whispered into his mind.



“You can say that again,” Yohji managed with a breathless laugh.  Good was an understatement! 



It’s going to get better, Schuldig promised.  He took one last lick of Yohji’s hardness before he pulled away.  He shifted again and bent down to kiss Yohji. 



Yohji moaned softly as their lips met, and he gave in to the urge to reach up and pull Schuldig closer.  Yohji parted his lips and their tongues entwined as the kiss deepened and became more passionate.  Schuldig’s mouth tasted like the clove cigarettes he smoked and something else that was unique to the German.  Oh, and it was good, Yohji thought.



Schuldig’s hands were moving again, his palms mapping out the planes of Yohji’s chest and shoulders.  His touch was gentle, and it left Yohji shivering and trembling with need. 



So pretty, Schuldig whispered into his mind.  And all mine . . .



Yes, Yohji thought back.  His mouth was much too busy with Schuldig’s to reply out loud.  All yours . . .



Need you.  Schuldig’s voice was sultry in his head, and Yohji moaned softly into the German’s mouth. 



Then take me.



Schuldig kissed him again before breaking away.  He shifted slightly and seemed to be looking for something in the pocket of the coat they were laying on, and a moment later came up with a small tube of lubricant.



Yohji grinned.  “Came prepared, did you?”



“I never leave home without it,” Schuldig assured him. 



“Lucky me,” Yohji said, his lips quirking in a smirk.  The smirk disappeared when Schuldig settled himself between Yohji’s legs.



“You’re sure?” Schuldig asked, once again seeming hesitant. 



“I’m sure,” Yohji replied without any hesitation at all.  “If you don’t believe me, then read my mind.” 



“No,” Schuldig said.  He lifted one of Yohji’s legs to hook around his waist before taking the tube of lubricant and opening it.  He quickly slicked his fingers with the viscous gel before flipping the lid shut and tossing it aside. 



Yohji closed his eyes and exhaled softly as Schuldig eased first one, and then two fingers inside of him.  He willed himself to relax as the German prepared him.  It was easy, really, for Schuldig’s touch was, once again, gentle.  Yohji was a boneless heap by the time Schuldig removed his fingers and positioned himself at Yohji’s entrance.



“Yes,” Yohji breathed as Schuldig sank into him slowly.  “Oh, God, yes!”  Yohji opened his eyes and found that Schuldig was watching him intently, his green eyes flashing in the moonlight.  He met and held the German’s gaze, and Schuldig paused for a moment.



“Mmm, nice,” Schuldig breathed.  He bent down and kissed Yohji softly before rotating his hips in a small circle.



“Oh!”  Yohji’s eyes grew wide as Schuldig’s hardness brushed against his prostate and sent a shock of pleasure through his system.



Schuldig’s hands moved to Yohji’s hips and held him in place as he began to slowly move within the assassin.  Yohji met and held Schuldig’s gaze as the German made love to him.  Each thrust was slow and deep and felt better than anything Yohji had ever experienced before.  And even though he knew it sounded cliché, it seemed as if they had been made for each other.  Schuldig’s hardness was touching all the right places within him, and Yohji knew he wasn’t going to last much longer.  It was just too good. 



“Schuldig, I’m . . .” 



“I know,” Schuldig interrupted breathlessly.  “I’m right there with you.”  He began to move faster, and Yohji groaned softly when the German once again encircled his hardness and gave it a slow pump. 



Yohji gasped sharply as a wave of pleasure broke over him and flowed through him.  It was sharp and intense and almost too much for him to bear, and he cried out softly as it overwhelmed him. 



So good, Schuldig’s voice whispered.  Schuldig made a soft sobbing sound as he found his release, and then allowed himself to slowly collapse onto the man beneath him. 



Yohji caught him and held him close, his hands coming up to smooth the German’s red hair away from his eyes.  Schuldig shuddered, and Yohji held him tightly as tears started to flow from the German’s eyes. 



“Sh,” Yohji soothed.  “It’s okay.” 



“No,” Schuldig whispered.  “No, it’s not.  It never is on this day . . . but thank you, none the less.  For the first time in many years it is bearable at least.”  Schuldig shifted and rolled off of Yohji and sat up next to him.



“You’re stunning,” Yohji whispered, and he lifted a hand to ghost it across the German’s pale skin.  “I can’t believe I’ve never noticed that about you before.” 



“I can,” Schuldig said, his tone gone wry.  He turned his head slightly so he could meet Yohji’s gaze.  “Usually when I’m touching you, Kudoh, it’s to hurt you.” 



“Hm,” Yohji murmured.  “I guess so. . . “ 



Schuldig’s expression was abruptly serious, and his gaze was troubled.  “We should forget this ever happened.”



“Yeah, we probably should,” Yohji said.  And yet, he couldn’t find that he felt any regret at all for having given himself to the German.  He offered Schuldig a wry smile.  “But, then again, I’ve never been known for doing anything that was remotely healthy for me. . . I smoke and drink far too much.  Adding ‘sleeping with the enemy’ to the list seems like the next logical step to me.” 



“I’m not your enemy tonight,” Schuldig said softly. 



“No,” Yohji agreed.   He raked a hand through his hair before glancing upwards at the skylight.  It was still early in the night--Yohji guessed that it was probably around midnight, and he knew none of his own teammates were expecting him back before dawn at the earliest.  “Ne, want me to stay?” 



Schuldig made a surprised sound and looked down at him.  “Why would you want to do that?” 



“I know what it’s like to be alone with bad memories,” Yohji said softly.  He tried to push the memory of Asuka away from himself, but as usual, he couldn’t.  Her face came to mind, and he blinked away the sting of tears. 



“You loved her,” Schuldig whispered.  The German’s fingers found the scars left by bullets on Yohji’s chest.



“Very much so,” Yohji whispered.  He closed his eyes as tears welled and fell, and he felt Schuldig kiss them away.  He couldn’t find it in himself to be angry with Schuldig for picking the memory out of his head.  He was probably projecting like mad, anyway, and Schuldig was a powerful telepath. 



“Some memories, even though hurtful, are worth keeping,” Schuldig whispered to him. 



Yohji gave a dark chuckle as he opened his eyes and looked up at him.



“This coming from the man that just used me to forget the death of his family,” Yohji said, his smile taking some of the sting from the rebuke. 



“I didn’t do it so much to forget as to just take the edge off the pain,” Schuldig admitted.  “And you could have walked away.’



“No,” Yohji said.  He reached up and placed the palm of his left hand against Schuldig’s right cheek.  “I couldn’t have walked away and lived with myself, not when I know what you are feeling.  Besides . . .I wanted it.” 



Schuldig’s eyes widened slightly as he made the admission, and tears filled the German’s eyes. 



“You mean it,” Schuldig whispered.



“Yeah, I do,” Yohji said.  He moved his hand and slid it around to cup the nape of Schuldig’s neck and pulled the German down so that he could kiss him.



“Yohji . . . “ Schuldig kissed him back before pulling away enough so that he could focus on the man beneath him. 



“Again?”  Yohji whispered.  “I want to forget for a while, too . . .” He wanted to forget that he had caused Asuka’s death.  And he desperately wanted to forget that when the night was over he and the fey-looking creature making love to him would be mortal enemies again.  That thought almost pained him more than Asuka’s memory. 



“Yes,” Schuldig whispered, and he bent to place his lips against the pulse in Yohji’s throat.  “Again.” 



With a fluttering sigh Yohji gave himself over to Schuldig’s care.



*****



He couldn’t forget it, of course.  He couldn’t forget Schuldig’s tears or his music or the way the German’s heart had been in his green eyes before they had gone their separate ways.  He dreamt of Schuldig almost every night now, and wondered if it were a side effect of the intimacy he had shared with the telepath.  Not that he really cared.  He enjoyed the dreams and the memories of Schuldig’s gentle touch on his skin. 



And he refused to feel guilt for that night.  He and Schuldig had not been Weiss and Schwarz that night.  They had been something else entirely, and Yohji, if ever confronted with that night, knew he would defend his actions to the bitter end if it ever came down to it. 



That night had been magic for Yohji.  He often wondered if Schuldig felt the same.



“Balinese!  Report!” 



Yohji started as Ran’s stern voice came through the earpiece of his communicator, and he silently cursed himself for letting his memories of that night interfere with a mission.  It was beyond stupid, and would get him killed.  Yohji firmly pushed all thoughts that were not mission related aside and lifted a hand to activate his radio.



“This is Balinese,” he whispered.  “I’m almost to the target area.  How are you guys doing?” 



“Nearly there,” Omi’s voice said. 



“Christ, this place is huge,” Ken’s voice commented.  “I’m there.  Seems like a typical warehouse staging area.  No sign of the targets yet . . . wait. There he is.”  There was a pause, and then:  “Shit!  Schwarz is here!” 



“Damn it!”  Ran’s voice was annoyed.  “Everyone get there and then hold positions.  I want to get a good look at what is going on before we go in.” 



“Roger that,” Yohji whispered into his radio.  His voice was deceptively calm.  His heart, however, was racing.  It had been nearly a month since he had allowed Schuldig to have him, and he hadn’t seen the German since.  He wasn’t entirely sure going into that room was a good idea.  He was surely projecting emotions, and Yohji wasn’t sure he’d be able to get them under control in enough time to avoid Schuldig’s detection. 



None the less, he moved at a swifter pace through the duct system until he found the air vent that overlooked the large area, and sure enough, there was Schwarz with their target and a few other people Yohji didn’t recognize. 



“This sucks,” Ken’s voice said.



“Hell yes it does!” Omi replied.



“Shut up,” Ran’s curt voice commanded.  “I’m trying to hear what’s being said down there!” 



The radio link fell silent, and Yohji slowed his breathing so he could hear the conversations coming from the floor below them.  It took a moment, but he was finally able to make out the individual voices. 



“I do not understand your hesitance in this matter,” a woman was saying.  Yohji shifted position slightly so he could see her through the vent’s grid, and found that the woman looked to be extremely old and wizened. 



“Perhaps it’s because I’m tired of listening to this bastard’s thoughts on how he’d like to rape Nagi,” Schuldig replied flatly.



Yohji’s breath caught in his throat as Schuldig’s voice floated up to him.  He had not been prepared for the sudden rush of emotion the sound of the German’s voice brought.



Oh, god.  I’m in so much trouble, Yohji thought. 



He wasn’t going to be able to hurt Schuldig. 



“Are you directly disobeying an order, Schuldig?”  Crawford’s voice was cold.



There was a moment of silence, and then Yohji heard Schuldig give a humorless laugh.



“Fuck.  Yeah.  I guess I am,” Schuldig finally said.



Yohji heard surprised gasps over the radio link.  Yohji shifted his position again, and he could see the German.  He was standing tall, his back rigid and his expression resigned. 



“Schuldig . . .” Crawford’s voice was almost pleading.



“I’m sorry, Brad, but I can’t do this anymore,” Schuldig said, his voice quiet but intense.  “I just can’t continue pretending that I’m okay with the things these people make us do.”   



“Then kill him, Crawford!” the woman commanded.



“Hai.” 



Yohji’s heart leapt as Crawford drew his pistol from its holster and took aim.  Even from where he was Yohji could see the anguish in the American’s eyes as he readied himself to execute his teammate.  No, God . .



We all believe that someday something will happen to free us.



Schuldig’s words were clear in Yohji’s mind, almost as if the German were speaking them again.



Below him, Crawford clicked the safety off the gun and it echoed unbelievably loud in the warehouse.  Yohji looked down and found that Schuldig was staring at his leader with an unreadable expression on his face. 



“Make it quick, ne?”  Schuldig said.



“Aa,” Crawford replied, and he squared his aim. 



“NO!”  Yohji wasn’t sure when he’d started to move, but he was dimly aware of Ran’s voice screaming in his ear to stand down as he kicked the grate out of the vent and dropped to the ground right in front of Schuldig.  He saw Crawford’s eyes widen as the gun went off, and Yohji grunted as he felt fire rip into his shoulder.  The force of the bullet threw him backwards and he felt strong arms wrap around his waist and ease him to the floor.



The room was suddenly thrown into chaos, and Yohji closed his eyes for a moment and tried to internalize the pain so that he could get off the damn floor and make himself useful.  When he opened them again, Ran was looking down at him, his amethyst eyes snapping with anger and another emotion that Yohji couldn’t quite define.  Fear, perhaps?



Ran, I didn’t know you cared. 



“What in the HELL are you doing?” Ran shouted at him. 



Yohji found that he couldn’t speak, for the world was starting to fade away.  He realized the warmth he felt on his shoulder and beneath him was his own blood, and it gave him the moment of clarity he needed to look his leader in the eye.



“Free them!” Yohji whispered, desperately hoping that the Weiss leader would understand.  Ran’s eyes grew wide as he whispered the words.  “Free them.“  The shouts in the room swirled away into one giant cacophony as his eyes grew heavy and slowly closed.



“Yohji!  Hold on!” 



It occurred to Yohji as he slipped into unconsciousness that the last had been spoken not by Ran, but by Schuldig. 



Curious, Yohji mused, and then he knew no more.



*****



He woke to piano music.



Yohji opened his eyes slowly, his brow knotted in confusion.  Where was he?  And why did his shoulder hurt like a son-of-a-bitch? 



“Hello there.” 



Yohji’s brow knotted further as he turned his head to find the source of the coolly confident voice.  He wasn’t quite prepared for the sight of Brad Crawford seated in an expensive looking rocker.  The Schwarz leader’s jacket was off and his white dress shirt was open at the top, the tie loosened considerably.  An open book rested in his lap, and he regarded Yohji with a slight smirk on his lips.



“What happened?”  Yohji managed after his shock had disappeared.  He noted, idly, that the piano music was Beethoven again. 



“You happened,” Crawford said, and he sounded infinitely amused.  “You are extremely lucky I was able to move the aim on that shot, or it would have taken you in the throat.” 



“I’m surprised you bothered,” Yohji returned, not entirely joking. 



“I might not have, had a vision at that very moment not told me that your action had precipitated a series of events that would free us from Estet,” Crawford returned, not entirely serious.  “As it is, your leader listened to your last words of entreaty before you slipped into unconsciousness.  He killed the Estet bitch himself.  I’m impressed at his ability to take a bare minimum of facts and piece together the big picture out of them.  I think he had a handle on the truth of the matter just mere moments after you told him to free us.” 



“That’s Ran for you,” Yohji said, his smile weak with his fatigue.  “I was counting on that.”  He closed his eyes as a shock of pain throbbed in his wounded shoulder.  “How long have I been out?”



“A day and a half,” Crawford said. 



“Where are we?”



“A penthouse suite that apparently your people have kept for such an emergency.  I think the only person that knows where we are right now is that red head woman that gives you your assignments,” Crawford said. 



“Everyone make it out?” Yohji asked. 



Crawford’s expression suddenly lost all humor as he nodded slowly.



“Yes, thanks to you, Yohji Kudoh.” 



“Good,” Yohji whispered.  He became aware of the piano music again, and it grew slightly louder as the door to the room opened and Ken came into the room. 



“You’re awake!” Ken exclaimed, smiling brightly.



“Hey,” Yohji said, and managed to return the smile.  “Did you guys run out and buy music or something?” 



Ken stopped abruptly and shook his head.



“No, that’s Schuldig,” Ken said.  “There’s a baby grand in the living room.” 



Yohji’s breath caught as he tried to sit up.



“Easy there!” Ken exclaimed.



“I want to go out there,” Yohji gasped.  His shoulder throbbed, but he didn’t care.  He couldn’t explain it, but he had a sudden, overwhelming urge to see Schuldig, and it wouldn’t be denied.   



“Then let us help,” Crawford said, his voice calm as always.  Strong hands helped him to sit up and then Ken and Crawford were helping Yohji from the bedroom.



“Hey, it’s Yohji!”  Omi exclaimed happily as the blonde was escorted into the living room. 



“Hey, Chibi,” Yohji greeted.  He noted that Omi and Nagi were seated cross legged on the floor, a chess board between them.  “Enjoying your new chess partner?” 



“Kicking my ass is more like it,” Nagi said with a slight smile.  He met Yohji’s gaze and gave the Weiss assassin a slow nod.  “Thank you.” 



Yohji merely smiled in reply before he turned his attention to where the piano took up most of the far end of the large living room.  He noted that Ran was stretched out on the sofa nearest to the piano--the room had two--and was reading a book.



“Yo,” Ran said as he looked away from the book long enough to acknowledge his presence. 



“Yo,” Yohji returned.



“Feeling better?”



“I’m not dead,” Yohji returned, smirking.  He flicked glances at the two men that were practically carrying him across the room.  “Still pathetically weak, though.”



“Your strength will return with time,” Ran said as he turned his attention back to the book. 



“Ran, thanks,” Yohji said.  “Thanks for trusting me.” 



“Hn.” 



Yohji knew he wouldn’t get anything else from Ran, so he allowed Ken and Crawford to take him closer to the piano.  Schuldig never paused in his playing, but he did slide a bit down the huge bench, and Crawford took over and eased Yohji onto the bench beside the German. 



“There you are,” Crawford said, his mouth set in something that was much more a smile than a smirk as he wrapped a comforter around Yohji’s shoulders and backed away. 



“Thanks,” Yohji said, his voice soft.  He forgot everything and everyone else then and leaned against Schuldig, hoping it wouldn’t disrupt the German’s playing if he rested his weary head against his shoulder. 



“It’s fine,” Schuldig said softly, his playing never wavering. 



“I love your playing,” Yohji said.  He let his eyes close as Schuldig started to play Chopin’s Etude in E major.  It was the same one he had first played on that night.



“I know,” Schuldig replied.  It wasn’t arrogant--he probably did know. Schuldig could probably read his emotions like an open book. 



Yohji paused and opened his eyes and lifted his head so he could look at the German’s face.



“I’m going to love you,” Yohji said, not really caring if the others heard him or not.  “I’m going to love you so much that the thought of it scares the living shit out of me.  I haven’t loved anyone since . . .”  He couldn’t say her name.  It still hurt to think of it.



“I know,” Schuldig said, his tone still soft and neutral.  His fingers danced across the keyboard effortlessly as he coaxed the music out of the piano, the tones surrounding Yohji with their beauty.  He finished the piece, and let the last note die before he removed his hands from the keyboard and carefully wrapped an arm around Yohji’s waist and held him close.



“Kiss him, already,” Farfarello quipped from where he was lying on his back in front of the fireplace. 



“Most excellent idea, Farfie,” Schuldig said, his lips quirking in a quick smile.



Yohji closed his eyes as Schuldig bent and sealed their lips together in a slow, languorous kiss. 



Love is scary sometimes, isn’t it, Kitten?  Schuldig’s mouth parted and their kiss grew deeper. 



Fuck, yeah, Yohji sent back as their tongues entwined.  Yohji lifted a hand to run it through crimson hair and ignored the pain it sent through his wounded shoulder.  They broke the kiss slowly, and Yohji blinked once before he glanced away from Schuldig.  He felt a blush warm his cheeks as he realized the others were staring at him.  Omi and Nagi were hiding smiles behind their hands, and Ran’s brows were arched slightly, a knowing smirk on his lips. 



“I love you, Yohji,” Schuldig said, his voice effectively bringing Yohji’s attention back to him.  “I loved you the moment you offered to help me forget.” 



“I’ll help you forget whenever you want,” Yohji whispered.  They kissed again before Yohji rested his head against Schuldig’s shoulder again.  He was going to have to lie down again, very soon.  But until then . . . “Play for me some more?” 



Yohji closed his eyes as the soft strains of Beethoven’s Moonlit Sonata rose and wrapped around him, and he smiled contentedly when Schuldig spoke into his mind.



Whenever you want, Liebe.



*****



End 



 



 



 




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