Pairing: Gokudera/Haru, mention of Tsuna/Kyoko
Word Count: 1,263
Disclaimer: KHR and its fabulous inhabitants belong to their rightful owner. I'm only playing with them.
Summary: Haru has lost her eyesight in a certain attack, and Gokudera was the only person around to keep both of them alive at the moment.
The only light in the room was the sliver of sun that seeped in from a tiny window. The sun was setting, casting a dusty orange haze around the wooden furniture in the crowded chamber. It was quickly getting dark, but this did not seem to bother the young woman sitting on the bed, whose attention remained fixed to the book in her hands. When the door swung open, she hardly even noticed.
Gokudera Hayato stepped into the room and frowned. Flicking on a small table lamp to his right, he asked, “Why didn’t you turn on the light?”
Miura Haru turned to the voice, her lips forming into a smile instinctively. “Don’t have much use for it now, do I,” she said with a shrug.
Gokudera’s frown became harder at her words, but he said nothing, only closing the door behind him a little louder than usual. Haru did not flinch or even stir; she simply considered him with the same smile and empty eyes. Of course, this only served to fuel his frustration.
“You cut your hair,” he said, using all strength he could muster to keep his tone calm. He looked at the long locks of hair lying on the floor, then at her head. Where a neat ponytail had been was replaced by messy tufts of short hair, and her bangs were conspicuously missing. It would have been amusing if anyone else were spotting the hairstyle, but now all he could feel was alarm.
How? he asked himself. He had removed all sharp objects from the house. The possibility that she might have pulled her hair out crossed his mind, and his expression darkened.
“Well thanks, Captain Obvious,” she replied airily, swiping her newly short hair with one hand. Then, as if she could read the emotions on his face, she sighed. “Second cupboard to the left, in my sewing kit.”
A sewing kit. He never imagined one to be in her possession. Without another word, he went to the cupboard and disarmed her of a minute pair of scissors, so tiny and harmless in his large hands. To cut off so much hair with them… she was indeed a very patient person.
Then again, she had a lot of time.
“What were you thinking?” he raised his voice, but managed to choke back the more colorful choices of words he would really like to use.
“Haru was hot,” she muttered in defense, resorting to the childish speech pattern she had given up a few years ago. “There isn’t even a fan in here.”
Suddenly, he felt like a deflated balloon.
“Just… don’t do it again, woman,” he said, rubbing the bridge of his nose. He would kill for a cigarette right now. “Dinner’s on the table. Go ahead and eat first.”
He watched as she gladly moved towards the door, happy that they avoided a confrontation. Or perhaps happy to get out of his sight. Before she left the room, she turned and asked, “Has Tsuna-san come today?”
The hope in her voice stung. He shook his head before remembering that she couldn’t see the gesture, but she already understood his silence. With a sad smile, she retreated.
He bent down to scoop up the scattered hair. Then, he pushed open the window. The wind caught the strands in his palm and they flew, spiraling upwards to the burning clouds. Finally, a lone lock was left. He tightened his fingers on it, no longer able to let go.
Blindness was nothing like Haru had imagined. She had thought it would be like closing her eyes for a long period of time.
It was nothing like that.
No funny colors or shapes danced behind her eyelids now. The black was silent and complete, like the snow after a blizzard that covered everything in sight. She used to love the town after a snowstorm: no school, and everything looked fresh and new. Yes, she was being encased and muffled in a layer of dark snow now, but that simply meant her world was new.
At least, that was what she kept telling herself all these months, to keep her grasp on sanity. It wasn’t easy, but she had eventually settled down into her routine and identity as a blind person.
Not permanently, Gokudera assured her. According to the optometrist he fetched from somewhere (she preferred not to think about how), her eyes were fine. They were blinking and reacting to light and everything, only unseeing. After that declaration, she heard a sound that she had become accustomed to over the years—a slight sizzling—a bomb being ignited. The doctor hastened to add that her eyes were fine physically. She could not see because of a psychosomatic impact, and that he could do nothing about.
She wondered what could have made a “psychosomatic impact” on her seeing abilities when Gokudera kicked the man out, threatening him not to mention the incident to another living soul.
Gokudera had, since then, speculated—or rather, convinced her—that it was the shock of the attack. The Bevington Family had surprised them by the sheer incredibility of the attack. No one had thought the up-and-coming gang would have the nerves to take on the Vongola just yet, though the intention was certainly there. Perhaps they had thought that right before the Tenth’s engagement party, everyone would be too busy to pay them any attention.
So Tsuna-san hasn’t actually got engaged yet, Haru always thought at this part of the story, feeling happy and then immediately feeling guilty for feeling happy. She had decided to be nothing but supportive to Kyoko-chan, and jealousy and bitterness were certainly not from the supportive department.
But a small part of her couldn’t help but feel relieved that she was blind and wouldn’t be able to see their wedding with her own eyes.
Not that it changed anything, of course. Tsuna-san had not stepped foot in here in the past months, and even though Gokudera said that was for safety precautions, she knew he was busy protecting his betrothed. As for her, his Storm Guardian appeared to be enough.
Shaking away the pangs in her chest, Haru sat down in front of the table and sniffed. Instant curry from a box. She found the ladle and stirred; at least the concoction didn’t seem to be watery like last time. Sighing, she began to eat.
She sure wished the battle outside would be over soon. The food here was barely edible, and Gokudera wouldn’t even let her near the stove.
Gokudera punched in a few numbers into the small device he was holding, then cursed when it replied with a blank bleep. Still no luck. Sometimes he really hated the Vongola’s excellent security. For months he had been searching for their underground base, which, naturally, changed location right after the war broke out. He wondered if they were still in this town.
However, he supposed he wasn’t the one to say anything, because the family hadn’t been able to locate him yet, either. Of course, he could easily find one of their men on the streets, but he did not want to leave her alone for long. He was determined to not join the fight (which had turned increasingly ugly) until she was returned to the Vongola stronghold.
He looked at the warm glow stealing into the room through the crack under the door, and made up his mind once more. Yes, he would not leave until then—no ulterior motives whatsoever. He was simply doing his job.