The Only Constant is Change

It's Haruhi, Kaoru, and Hikaru's final year at Ouran. Dynamics are changing and evolving... What will happen to the Host Club Members?

Author's Note: This story takes place about 8 months after the events in A Faire Shot at Mythology. It can be read as a stand alone, but it references events and items from that piece as well. If you are reading my work for the 1st time, I would humbly suggest reading my other stories The Game and A Faire Shot at Mythology before reading this to completely understand some of the relationship dynamics that I use. I promise that if you like this style of writing you will like those too. =)

http://archiveofourown.org/works/681492/chapters/1250078

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76. After the Ball

A rustle of blankets and the squeak of a mattress spring woke Haruhi. The night previous - when she, Kyouya, Tamaki, and Marika had arrived back at the Hotel late the night before they discovered that the others had pulled the mattresses, pillows and blankets from the various beds in the suite and made a large nest in the middle of the room. All of the other hosts, as well as Renge, Mai, and Marika’s partners Jon and Mel, were all sleeping in various positions on the mattresses. As exhausted and emotionally drained as she was, Haruhi still had cracked a smile at the way her friends had solved the sleeping issues of separate rooms or trying to find extra rooms in a Hotel that was completely full. When she looked at the others who had entered with her, they all nodded to each other in shared amusement before slipping off their shoes, loosening their clothing, and sliding into any available space. As Haruhi stepped forward, she saw Hikaru lift his head and reach out his hand to her silently. Without a word Haruhi and Kyouya slid into the space next to him, while Tamaki slid in next to Kaoru and Marika next to her partners. “I love you both” were the only words that Hikaru had whispered before holding them tight. Within moments, all had fallen asleep still wearing their clothes. 

But the sun creeping through the curtains, the rustle of so many people sleeping in the same room, and an urgent need to pee, finally motivated Haruhi to leave the warmth of the nest to use the facilities and see if there was any coffee that could be made in the suite. I could probably order it from room service, but I don’t want to wake the others if I can help it. Spying a full sized coffee pot in one corner of the small kitchen in the suite, she opened the provided coffee packet and started a pot. While waiting for it to brew, she made her way silently to the window, drawing back the curtain slightly. A casual glance down at the street had her backing away from the window as fast as she could. The window looked out over the front of the hotel, and she could see at least twenty-five different news agencies, countless paparazzi, and hundreds of gawking onlookers in the park across the street from the hotel. It was clear that only a police presence kept them from swarming the hotel and blocking traffic. “Oh my gods!” Haruhi whispered as she stared blankly at the curtain which had fallen across the window again. 

“What is it, ashke?” Takashi’s voice was barely above a whisper as he stepped quietly up to her and put his hand on her shoulder. 

“There are reporters everywhere,” Haruhi responded as she turned in to put her arms around his waist. “I have never seen so many in one place. The police are keeping them from the hotel, but there is no way that we are getting out of here without going past them.” She mumbled against his chest. “I just want to go back to the house and spend the last two days we all have together, just hanging out and doing nothing. The last week has been incredible, but it has been so busy.” 

Takashi held her tightly, “I am so very sorry ashke, so much has happened that it has been overwhelming for all of us. But you, Kyouya, and to a lesser extent Hikaru have been in the center of a hurricane of activity. I understand your need for quiet and calmer activity. I have not had to deal with nearly as many obstacles, and I am also feeling the pressure.” He took her hand and led her into another room. Lifting the exposed box spring, he set it at an angle, with the frame next to it to clear a space in the middle of the room before turning back to her. “Do yoga with me? I feel the need to calm my mind before we have to deal with the day.” 

“Please,” Haruhi answered simply and stripped off the shirt she was still wearing from the night before down to the camisole underneath, silently grateful that the pants she had thrown on the previous night before going to the police station were loose. It wasn’t her usual practice gear, but it would allow her to move relatively freely into most of the positions. 

Takashi stripped off his shirt and removed his belt, pants riding low on his hips without the belt to hold them in place. He stepped to the center of the room. 

Despite the emotional exhaustion of the previous night, Haruhi felt a quick flash of lust and heat in her cheeks as she watched Takashi remove his shirt; his body sculpted perfection that always managed to make her heart flutter even before she was able to acknowledge it openly. Out of reflex, she tried to squelch it as she joined him in the center of the room. 

Takashi smiled as he took one of her hands and laid a kiss on the palm before setting it on his heart. He bent down and kissed her softly, before murmuring in her ear, “I love that you flush every time I remove my shirt. Even back when I thought there would be no place for me in your life, I cherished each look and expression. If I could have nothing else of you, at least I knew that your reaction was all for me.” 

Haruhi flushed even brighter before a stray thought crossed her mind. “Wait… if you knew I was checking you out every time… How many times did you deliberately wait? Now that I think about it, Hani was always in a full gi, or already shirtless when I arrived at the dojo. But you always took a moment to get ready once I was there.” 

It was Takashi’s turn to flush, “Do you want to begin with breathing exercises?” 

“Don’t change the subject, ashke,” Haruhi teased. 

Takashi sighed and mumbled. “Catching the first look was an accident. After that, I may have deliberately done it a few more times. Hani would tease me mercilessly about it once he caught on to it.” 

“I bet he did,” Haruhi laughed at her partner’s discomfort. Standing on her toes, she stretched up and placed a kiss on his lips. “But as sexy as you are shirtless, now that I know what is underneath everything and not just physically, you are insanely gorgeous. I am beyond fortunate to have you in my life.” She nipped at his neck before sliding her body down his slowly, knowing the tease would be appreciated by both of them. When she was flat-footed again, she took a tiny step backwards. Not enough to break their connection, but enough to say, “Breathing exercises?” 

Takashi smiled at the woman he loved. “Begin on three…”
 

 

********************

Still mostly asleep, Hikaru stretched an arm out and found an empty space where Haruhi had been the night before. He could feel the residual warmth from where her body had been, and if he stretched further, he could touch Kyouya’s chest, since his other lover had fallen asleep on the other side of her. Lifting his head he caught a glimpse of her in one of the bedrooms, obviously in the middle of a yoga pose transition. A quick look around confirmed that Takashi was no longer in the nest, so it didn’t take much of a leap to let him know what the pair were up to. Moving into the spot she had vacated, he took the rare opportunity to cuddle into Kyouya, sighing in gratification when Kyouya pulled him against his body even as he still slept. Within moments, he had drifted back into a light sleep.

The sound of a shower running woke him about an hour later. Yawning he stretched and felt Kyouya move behind him.

“Good morning, Hika,” Kyouya murmured quietly as laid a gentle kiss on Hikaru’s neck. “Is everyone still asleep?”

Hikaru rolled over and placed his hand on Kyouya’s hip. “I think Haruhi and Takashi are in the shower. I woke up earlier and they were doing yoga.” A hint of anger crept into his voice. “What happened at the police station last night? I tried to go down there, but Takashi’s father teamed up with my mom and wouldn’t let me. I tried to sneak off but one or the other was always with me. I’m sorry l wasn’t there, love.”

“There wasn’t much that you could have done,” Kyouya replied. “Once we got there, Ranka, Tamaki, and Marika had already given their statements and shown the evidence to the police. I guess that Marika was able to get video footage of what happened. Neither Haruhi nor I were allowed to see it, but Tama said that he felt desperate and helpless as he was watched. Even he won’t give me details.”

“It must have been bad then,” Hikaru shuddered. “How is Ranka?”

“He is definitely shaken up, but he is hiding, or at least trying to hide it from Haru. There was enough evidence to charge the man caught on the tape with sexual assault, battery and a few other charges.” Kyouya’s hand unconsciously tightened on Hikaru’s hip. “There was also enough evidence to bring charges of kidnapping, premeditated assault, and assisted sexual assault against my father.”

“I’m so sorry, Kyo,” Hikaru wrapped his arms around Kyouya and held him tight for a moment. “How are you doing?”

“Honestly, I am a just glad they caught him and arrested him,” Kyouya held tight to Hikaru, “He had chartered a flight back to Japan tonight. If he had made it back, the chances of the arrest actually happening and the charges sticking dropped dramatically.”

“Did you see him?”

“No,” Kyouya said sharply, his mouth in a tight line. “As soon as they police left to make the arrest, the 4 of us – Haruhi, Tamaki, Marika, and I were ushered out of the station and told to come here to the hotel. Just before we arrived here, we saw a news bulletin come across the TV in the limo showing footage of my father’s arrest. That’s the only reason how I know that my father was actually arrested. The lawyer for Ranka said that they are arranging for a press conference later today to address everything.”

“I know mom is highly protective of Haruhi and Ranka, so that doesn’t surprise me. I just wish there was something I could do to help you through this.”

“You already are,” Kyouya replied. “Just by being here. It’s more than I have ever had from my own family.”

Dual buzzes made them look over and grab their phones. Looking down, they said at the same time.

“Mom.”

“Akira.”

At that moment, Haruhi walked into the room, hair wet from the shower, wrapped in a white bathrobe, and holding her phone to her ear. “…mmmmhmm… okay Dad. We will see you in a few minutes. I will order breakfast for everyone. I love you.”

She clicked off the phone and looked over to see Hikaru and Kyouya sitting up and looking at their phones. “I take it you just got the same message?”

“Yes,” Hikaru got up and wrapped his arms around her. “How are you doing, love?”

“I’m ok. Worried about my dad, but he seems to be doing ok this morning. He won’t tell me everything that happened, but that is to be expected. He, Yuzuhra, Akira, Yorihisa, and the lawyer are on their way over. I guess there is going to be a press conference to address the vultures outside later today, but first they want to talk to us about how we want to handle everything.”

“I guess we better wake everyone up then,” Hikaru looked at the rest of their sleeping friends. “Did your dad say how long before they would get here?”

“About an hour,” Haruhi replied. “I’ll start some more coffee and order breakfast if you want to start waking the others up. I really like Marika and her partners seem nice, and I adore Renge and Mai, but I think for this first meeting, I need a bit more privacy.”

“Hani and I will go with them and meet you back at the house,” Takashi entered wearing his pants from the night before and towel drying his hair.

Kyouya laid his hand on Takashi’s shoulder, “I don’t have a problem with you staying and I know Haruhi doesn’t either.”

Takashi returned the gesture, “I know, my friend. But for appearances sake, if nothing else, it would not be right for us to remain. We will return to the house.”

“You guys can help me with the decorations,” Tamaki piped up from bed. The friends turned and looked at him. “Sorry, I know you guys were trying to talk quietly but it was enough to wake me… plus I smelled coffee.” He stretched and got up from the bed to join the discussion, still managing to look casually sexy in his rumpled tuxedo pants and undershirt. “That was kind of the plan for today anyway.” When the other’s looked blank, he continued. “Remember the whole Christmas thing? I know that we used the Maison de Roses for the Ball, but Yuzuha assured me that everything would be cleaned up and we would be able to have our Christmas celebration tonight. That is if you guys still want to do it…”

Haruhi gave Tamaki a hug, “that sounds great Tama. I think we can all use a bit of cheer after last night. Are you going to have enough time to get everything done though?”

“Well, I am going to use some of the stuff from the Ball, but there are a few specific things that I wanted to get. I was going to send you all off somewhere today, regardless, so I could get everything ready, but I admit I could use a bit of help decorating.”

“We can definitely do that Tama-chan,” Hani piped up as he sat up on the mattress before poking Kaoru, who nodded. Clearly indicating that they had overheard the conversation.

Haruhi smiled, “Is there anyone who is still asleep?”

“I don’t think so,” Marika said with a grin as she opened her eyes. “Don’t worry. We aren’t offended that you need to have a discussion without us. Honestly, it has been a kind of crazy night and I would love to have a bit of quiet time with my partners.”

“You are welcome to come back to the Guest House tonight for the festivities, Frizz,” Tamaki said. “It’s going to be fun. I planned games, food, caroling, and even a Santa Claus.”

“Sounds like fun. We will be there. Just send me a text and let me know what time.” She got up and stretched, while Jon and Mel sat up and started to make their way to the edge of the mattresses.

“We can help too,” Renge added as Mai grinned. “We used to have great Holiday parties at my parent’s house and I know how to put together a fantastic scavenger hunt!”

“It’s settled then,” Tamaki grinned. “Haru, Hika, and Kyo will stay here and take care of the hard stuff while the rest of us go have fun.” He winked at Haruhi to let her know he was teasing before kissing her cheek, “Seriously though, let us know if you need anything. We will be running around and have everything ready by the time you guys get back.”

“Thank you, Tama,” Haruhi kissed him back. “I appreciate your understanding… and I have a feeling that we are going to need some of that Christmas fun after this discussion.”

“That’s what friends are for, princess.”

   
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