Well, finished with this sooner than I thought. Short-ish mainly because I ran out of paper. Will make up for it in the next chapter.

Rating: PG-13
Pairing: Kamui/Subaru, Seishirou/Subaru
Summary: Kamui has gone with Seishirou to keep an eye on Subaru.
Timeline: X12 going waaay AU
Disclaimer: Not mine, Clamp's. Just playing.
Warning: Shounen-ai, sappiness, OOC

Home And Heart

Chapter 3: In the midst of death, we find life

By Beth


Subaru looked pointedly at the Sakurazukamori's hand still holding his. He wasn't very surprised that Seishirou merely smiled and held his grip, as if it was the most natural thing in the world. The Sumeragi tried to pull himself up.

Suddenly the world spun in front of his eyes. Dimly he heard Kamui's panicked yelp and the tensing of Seishirou's fingers on his own.

Then a pair of strong arms helped him up, steadying him on his feet. He slumped gratefully against a broad chest and tried not to think about how warm and strangely safe it felt.

"Kamui-chan, there's soup on the stove; go heat it up," Seishirou commanded while steering his burden towards the bathroom. "Just don't burn it!"

Subaru almost blushed at the word Kamui muttered before rushing out of the bedroom. Still, it was good that the boy was being more assertive...


Fifteen minutes later Subaru relaxed under a stream of warm water. He gazed at Seishirou, who was leaning nonchalantly against the sink.

"Do you have to stand there and watch?" the younger man asked resignedly.

"Would you prefer I join you?"

A glare was all the Sakurazukamori received in return.

"Unfortunately," he continued, "the prospective detrimental effects of you falling and cracking your head open outweigh those of a permanent full-body blush." He smirked. "I trust you're not afraid I'll take advantage of your weakened state?"

"It's not your style, Seishirou-san. And not with Kamui in the kitchen."

"The bedroom's soundproofed," Seishirou offered.

Subaru rolled his eyes and decided to change the subject. "Why is there a seat in the shower stall?" He gestured to the elegant tangle of aluminum tubes on which he was sitting.

"My mother had it installed after she broke a leg jumping down from a rooftop." The Sakurazukamori picked a towel off a rack. "Get out of there already. You're clean enough and you need to eat."

"I guess so," Subaru agreed, taking the towel.

Once the patient was dressed in a fresh set of pajamas, Seishirou led him carefully back to the bed. Kamui was waiting with soup and a look on his face that said he did not want to know what the other two had been doing in the bathroom.

Subaru sat down heavily and shot an annoyed look at Seishirou when the other man reached over to fluff up the pillows.

"I'm not buying this act," he whispered into his ear.

The Sakurazukamori merely smiled and ruffled his hair. Kamui handed Subaru the soup bowl, and for the next few minutes the three managed to keep conversation to the barest minimum. Finally Subaru finished his meal.

"Can I have a glass of water?" he asked.

Seishirou nodded and headed to the kitchen. The younger onmyouji immediately turned to Kamui.

"Why are you here?"

"I had to take care of you." The boy shrugged. "I'm alright, and he hasn't tried anything yet. It's kind of fun."

The sound of footsteps alerted them to Seishirou's return. After he came in, a white-furred head insinuated itself inside the room, followed by the rest of the cat's body.

"Hello, Pochi-chan," Subaru said softly when she jumped up onto the bed. He looked up when he heard a choking sound. "Yes, Seishirou-san?"

"P-pochi??" Seishirou gasped. "Subaru-kun, how could you do this to a lady like her? Don't you know it's a dog's name?"

Kamui laughed and Subaru couldn't help but blush. For a second he recalled a similar tableau - himself recovering from spellcasting, Seishirou-san teasing him and loud, raucous laughter from the third person, however concerned she was about him.

"Or," Seishirou continued gleefully, "I seem to recall a certain incident with a party line..."

Subaru blushed even harder and buried his face in Pochi's soft fur, muttering something that sounded suspiciously like "drop dead". The cat started purring; she curled up on the pillow beside her human, gracing him with a concerned gaze.

"I believe Pochi-san has the right idea," Seishirou said. "Sleep now, Subaru-kun."

"Will you leave me alone if I do?" the younger man asked.

"Of course. Pleasant dreams."

Kamui spared Subaru one last concerned look before leaving the room as well.


In the living-room both Dragons studiously avoided each other's gaze. Kamui browsed through the books on the shelves until he found a framed picture tucked between two tomes of Marcel Proust. Before he could look at it, Seishirou snatched it from him.

"I think I've had quite enough of your meddling with my property," the Sakurazukamori said. Then he smiled. "Subaru-kun, for instance."

Kamui's amethyst eyes shot lightning at him as the boy turned on his heel. "I'm sick of you speaking of Subaru as if he was a pet. He does not belong to anybody, he's a human being and can choose for himself!"

"Like choose you?"

Kamui flinched.

"Stop deluding yourself," Seishirou continued coldly. "He's been bound to me for almost all his life."

"If you feel nothing for him, it's a one-sided bond!" Kamui spat. "It can be broken... easily!"

In a flash and whirl of movement, Seishirou's hands were at his throat, holding him above the ground. The air smelled of sakura.

"You don't understand!" the Sakurazukamori snarled.

Amethyst eyes stared into gold and gray, unblinking. "Then make me understand."

Seishirou let the boy slump against the wall. "It started sixteen years ago, when I met a child that tried to exorcise the Sakura. On a whim I made a bet with the boy... that in the future I'd live with him for a year. Then if afterwards I felt something for him, I'd let him go. Otherwise I'd kill him.

"I marked him then, and seven years later recognized him in a Tokyo subway station. During the next year I got to know him... him and his crazy sister, that is."

He picked up the photo that had fallen to the floor in the scuffle. It showed two young people with almost identical faces, but one wore a simple if colorful jacket while the other was dressed in a catgirl outfit, complete with cat ears and a bell around her neck.

"You'd like Hokuto-chan."

"But you killed her."

"She offered herself in her brother's stead. It is an old custom. That was after I... revealed my nature to him and reminded him of the bet he lost." Seishirou smiled wistfully. "He looked striking then, with those lovely eyes full of hurt. I felt-"

Kamui raised an eyebrow. "You felt?"

"I felt nothing."

"But you didn't kill him."

"Hokuto's death was an equally strong blow to the Sumeragi clan."

"She wasn't as powerful as Subaru is."

"Subaru-kun was a toy that had outlived its usefulness. Nothing more."

Kamui smiled. "Is that why you let him go?"

Seishirou's hand flew up, then stopped mere inches from the boy's chest. He took a step back.

"Watch it, Kamui-chan. Destiny does not value wisdom in her champions."

Moments ticked by, and the only sound in the room was quiet breaths.

Finally, Seishirou smiled.

"What do you want for dinner?"


"Do the others know you're here?" Subaru asked.

As Seishirou had pronounced the patient still unfit for walking to the kitchen, the three Dragons were eating their dinner in the bedroom.

"I left a letter behind," Kamui explained between bites. "And I called Imonoyama-san today."

"The Chairman of Clamp Campus?" Seishirou asked.

"Yeah. He threw a fit. I wonder how Sorata's taking it - Arashi-san probably thinks I'm crazy."

"I'd hate to hear what Kishuu-san thinks of me," Subaru sighed. "But at least you'll be able to explain in school soon."

Kamui nearly choked on his rice. "School?"

Subaru looked surprised. "It's Monday the day after tomorrow, right?"

"Exactly, and Kamui-chan shouldn't miss school when I'm home to take care of you," Seishirou stated.

The boy looked unconvinced.

"I promise I won't try to seduce Subaru-kun when you're out!" Seishirou laughed.

Kamui chuckled. "I think Subaru's disappointed by this!"

Subaru blushed. "You're a bad influence on him, Seishirou-san."


~To Be Continued~




Author's Notes:
Modesty, no modesty, Subaru's in no shape to protest against Seishirou seeing him naked. And Sei-chan does not object ^_~
If you suspect that the fact that the Sakurazukamori's bedroom is soundproof will come in handy, you're right.
The 'party line' comment Seishirou makes pertains to Tokyo Babylon volume 3: Call A, when Subaru contacts three amateur spellcasters over a party line and gives his name (at Seishirou's hint) as 'Pochi'.
Marcel Proust is the author of "In search of lost time", a cycle I'm perpetually planning to read.


In the next chapter: It looks like this arrangement will last for a while. But how's everyday life treating Seishirou, Subaru and Kamui? There might be trouble, quarrels and fashion mayhem, but despite all, "It can't rain all the time"

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