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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52. Aftermath

I formally disassociate myself from House Ootori. I am no longer the son of Yoshio Ootori...

The words hung in the air between Kyouya and Yoshio their weight sitting hard on the chests of the assembled group as they waited to see how Yoshio would respond.

Yoshio went ashen before turning a shade of red that Kyouya had only seen once in his life and it wasn’t directed towards him at the time. The world shrank to the two of them and in a voice tightly laced with rage, Yoshio spat, “You have no Respect for the House that raised you. You have no Honor. You choose to give up your name and your heritage for something as worthless and fleeting as love.” His voice sneered on the last word. “By your choice, you are banned from the Ootori estate. Your name will be stricken from the family records and your descendants will be anathema. I have no third son. You are dead to me.”

As the last words Yoshio turned and walked out, slamming the door behind him and never looking back.

As the others watched Yoshio stalk out, Haruhi and Hikaru, immediately wrapped their arms around Kyouya, holding him as tightly as possible while his body trembled in silent emotion, hands balled into tight fists at his side.

“Kyo-love,” Haruhi breathed against his chest. Not saying anything more just holding onto him as tightly as possible while Hikaru did the same.

Silently, Tamaki stepped forward and wrapped his arms around Kyouya’s back.

As if that was a cue, Kaoru, Hani, Takashi, and Renge stepped forward to wrap their arms around the threesome, lending their silent support and love to their friends, while Yuzuha, Yorihisa, Akira, and Yuzuru stood by watching their children. A single heartbreaking sob originating from the center of the group was quickly choked off, but it echoed off the walls. It was enough to cause tears to stream down Yuzuha’s face and blindly turn into the embrace of Akira Morinozuka who just held her, stroking her hair quietly as Yuzuru and Yorihisa stepped closer to put a hand on each of her shoulders, all faces grim.

“I’m sorry, is this a bad time?” an unfamiliar feminine voice said softly, as an attractive redhead stepped into the area, taking in the two huddled groups and the overwhelming air of tension. Since she had nearly been knocked to the ground by an unheeding Yoshio Ootori on her way to the Guest House, she had a pretty good guess as to the reason for the high emotions. However, having a good guess as to the reason did not stop a faint tremble at being the sudden focus of a dozen pairs of hostile eyes when her question bounced off the marble hall.

“Ms. Bellamy, it is wonderful to see you again, how is your family?” Yuzuru stepped forward immediately to warmly greet the stranger, taking both her hands in his and kissing both her cheeks in a traditional French manner.

At Yuzuru’s greeting the eyes grew less hostile and settled to wary.

“Marika!!” Tamaki disentangled himself from the group and stepped forward sweeping her into a hug, while a sudden giggle erupted out of her throat. “I am so glad that you were willing to come out and help us!”

Marika watched as most of the eyes went from wary to neutral at Tamaki’s enthusiastic greeting, further indicating that she was not a threat. Hmmm… interesting… there are three pairs that are still quite unconvinced. One belongs to Haruhi Fujioka – no surprise there – she is Tamaki’s ex and still quite good friends with him, if his last conversation with me is any indication. The second is Kyouya Ootori – still no surprise. He just had an obviously painful discussion with his father and I am interrupting what must be a very vulnerable moment for him. Considering what I know of the Ootori family, emotion is not their strong suit. It’s the last pair that has me the most intrigued. A Hitachiin naturally – All of Paris is buzzing about the HDG Twins, so they are hard to miss, and not Hikaru who still has his hand linked with Kyouya’s. Gold tipped red hair means it’s Kaoru Hitachiin then. Marika watched as Hikaru glanced over at his brother concern then amusement fleeting across his face as he watched Kaoru’s expression slowly go carefully blank, though Kao’s eyes never left hers. It’s a different kind of wary then… not only concern about his brother’s boyfriend but something to do with Tamaki… Oh this is going to be an interesting interview! Out loud, she gave Tamaki a brilliant smile before saying, “Willing?!? This is the story of the year and I am getting an exclusive. I don’t even know how to thank you enough for the opportunity.”

“Honestly, I am just glad that I have the connections to help the people I care about,” Tamaki smiled as he answered.

“You are a good person Tamaki Suoh, I will make sure to be on my best behavior.”

“I was counting you in that statement, Frizzy.” Tamaki laughed. “I was hoping to have a chance to introduce you, Mel, and Jon to everyone while they were here for the break anyway. This just solves two problems at once.”

“You know I hate that nickname, Fuzzy.” Marika laughed.

A spilt second decision made as she watched Tamaki and Marika interact, Haruhi walked slowly toward the laughing friends. Extending her hand in a friendly greeting, she said, “Hello. I am Haruhi Fujioka. I wanted to thank you for taking the time to interview us.” Then with a smirk and an arched eyebrow, she asked, “Frizzy and Fuzzy?”

Marika made a long drawn out sigh, “You know Tama and I went to school together. In the third grade, I had the misfortune of having tightly curled ginger hair. When it got cold, it used to stick out everywhere. The kids used to tease me about it – calling me Frizzy. One day Tama overheard and came to my defense. He happened to be wearing a jacket with a fur-lined hood that day. He said ‘if she is Frizzy because of her hair then I must be Fuzzy because of my jacket.’ Since Tama was always one of the popular kids in the class, the kids stopped teasing me after that.”

“And you and Tamaki have remained friends ever since,” Kyouya said stepping forward. All traces of his earlier tension locked carefully behind his cool façade. “It is a pleasure to meet you. Tamaki has spoken of you often over the years.”

“You as well, Kyouya. I am glad he made such good friends when he left to move to Japan.” Marika replied while offering a solid handshake. “Thank you for entrusting me with your story. I know it is not an easy path you have chosen and to have the fortitude to do it publically is an inspiration. I am sure Tama has told you that I am also in a poly relationship.”

“Yes,” this time it was Hikaru who stepped forward. “I also understand that you must keep it quiet for the sake of your career.”

“Not just mine, but also for my boyfriend’s. He is currently studying Global Politics, in the hopes of working at one of the French Embassies. The French are more forgiving of some romantic quirks, but many countries are not. Our girlfriend Melissa is studying architecture with Tama. Right now, for all appearances we are all just roommates. Even our families do not know of our true relationship. It can be a burden. It is such a relief to know that there are others who won’t judge us.”

“I can promise you that judgment about lifestyle choices are the ABSOLUTE last thing any of us here would do,” Haruhi said with a genuine grin. “It would be a general case of the pot calling the kettle black. I do hope to meet your others before we leave. Any friends of Tamaki’s are worth getting to know.” She changed the topic slightly. “As you can see we are in the middle of a photo shoot for the Maison de Roses website. We are almost done. Do you mind waiting for a bit? I believe we only have one more scene to do.” She looked over at Yuzuha.

“Exactly right, Haru-yoshi. Though…,” She gave Marika a full once over before continuing, “We are still short on females for the last picture. Marika, would you be willing to put on a ball gown and join the group for the last scene?”

Marika, stunned beyond comprehension, stared at the famous fashion designer and opened her mouth to respond, but no words came out.

Tamaki seeing his friend floundering, responded for her with a smile, “She would love to.”

Marika nodded her head vigorously and a squeaky, “yes please!” escaped her lips. OH MY GOD, oh my god, oh my god… first the interview and then being in an HDG original!!! Get it together girl!! She took a shaky breath and replied more firmly trying to sound professional, “It would be my pleasure. Really.”

“Good,” Yuzuha said with a smile and a wink before turning back to the group and gesturing for them to head back upstairs for the final fitting. “Now go. We don’t want to lose this light. Akira, Yorihisa, Yuzuru, would you mind being background for the shoot? We are trying to give the impression of a full ballroom.”

“Of course Yuzuha,” Akira replied warmly as the others nodded.

“Perfect. I believe we have some dinner jackets that will work perfectly. If you will follow me, we can get started.”
 

 

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

Within a matter of minutes the group had reassembled in the ballroom. Yuzuha had taken control again and in no time, there was music playing, two couples dancing and groups chit-chatting, all giving the appearance enjoying themselves immensely.

Finally Kane determined that he had enough and the group was excused, so the photography team could start to edit their photos. At Tamaki’s suggestion, Marika, Haruhi, Kyouya, and Hikaru agreed to meet back downstairs in the Library to conduct the interview, since the upper floors were still overrun with photography equipment and clothing.

Kyouya felt his nervousness start to creep up as he was changing back into something casual. At Hikaru’s suggestion, he was wearing faded jeans, a silk shirt in silver, and a black blazer. The outfit looked far more relaxed than he felt. And that’s the idea… We are going for the comfortable casual look rather than the professional. We want to give the impression that we are just three average crazy kids in love. I just… feel out of my element. Suits and leather pants are their own kind of protection.

“While you are indescribably sexy in leather pants and suits, you still look amazing in simple stuff,” Hikaru said quietly from the doorway, “even if you aren’t completely comfortable in it.”

“How did-?”

“I am learning to read you,” Hikaru said and entered the room, capturing Kyouya’s lips for a kiss.

“It is comfortable. It’s just…”

“The suits and leather shout that you have a certain level of confidence,” Hika continued. “But really in the end, they are just scraps of fabric. The confidence, ability, and intelligence behind them are all you.” He wrapped his arms around Kyouya’s waist and pressed his head against his chest. “I love you. I still can’t believe that you chose me in the end. I can’t know completely what you have given up, but I swear that between Haruhi and me, you won’t regret it.”

Kyouya held tightly to Hikaru for a few moments, calming himself to the beat of Hikaru’s heart. Pressing a kiss against Hika’s forehead, he said, “I realized when my father was talking that I made my choice over a year ago. You and Haruhi were the best things to come into my life. The whole Host Club is more my family than my real family has ever been. In the end, it isn’t hurting as much as I thought it would.” Hikaru craned his head up to look at his lover. Meeting his eyes, he arched a brow, which made Kyouya smile. “I didn’t say it was easy. I am saying that it didn’t hurt as much as I expected it to. My father can do what he chooses and I am now free to live my own life… and I fully intend to prove that I am the better man – in business, in family, and in love.”

“What about your sister and your mother?”

“My mother was always cowed by my father, so I have very few memories of her where she showed love or affection to me.” Kyouya sighed. “I am going to miss Fuyumi. She was always the one I could run to when father was so disappointed in me.”

“I wouldn’t count Fuyumi out,” Haruhi said from the doorway as she entered the room. “If I have learned anything about your sister in the time that I have known her, her Ootori stubborn streak is as wide as yours. And she loves you. I have no doubt that she will find a way to work around your father’s restrictions. It may take a few months, but she will be there for you.” She walked over as Hika and Kyo opened their arms to her.

All three just held each other in silence for a few more moments. Finally Kyouya breathed, “Marika is waiting. Let’s get this over with… Maybe then we can have a few days peace.”

Haruhi chuckled, “I kind of like her. She’s spunky. I can see why she and Tamaki were friends.”

Hikaru added, “My guess is they were something other than friends once. What do you want to bet that she was his first kiss?”

Haruhi grinned, “He never discussed it with me, so I have no idea. Just don’t tell Kao your theory. He seemed to be juuuuust a teensy bit jealous at the way Tama greeted her.”

“Oh he was more than a teensy bit jealous,” Hikaru laughed. “I could feel it through the bond. It did calm a bit when Tamaki mentioned her lovers. Still…”

“Tamaki is falling hard for Kaoru,” Kyouya said. “I’ve watched him and he is doing many of the same things that he did when he was falling for Haruhi. It’s kind of cute.”

“Or the things that he doesn’t realize he does when he is around you,” Haruhi teased. “He is more than a little in love with you too Kyo.”

“Well, I can definitively say, he isn’t with me, since that would be a bit awkward with the whole Kao thing,” Hika chuckled as he squeezed them both. “But since I already have three people I would die for, I am ok with not having another.”

“And there is always the fact that you could play with Takashi or Hani anytime you wanted without it bothering me, Kyo, or Kao.” Haruhi smirked.

“That too.” Hikaru grinned unrepentantly.

“And this is the family I chose.” Kyouya kept his tone light. He kissed each of them one more time before signaling that they should go downstairs. “I definitely made the right choice.”

“We are unconventional, but the Host club has always been that way. It’s why I chose to stay even after my debt was paid,” Haruhi said with a grin. “Notwithstanding I was half in love with all of you.”

“But that’s what makes it fun!” Hikaru grinned as he started to lead them out of the room. Suddenly a thought crossed his mind and he blanched then frowned.

It was enough of a pause to make the others stop.

“What is it Hika?” Haruhi asked, her voice instantly worried.

“It’s nothing… Just Kyo…”

“Yes.”

“Don’t tell Kaoru that I said clothing is just strips of fabric. He would never forgive me.”

Haruhi and Kyouya’s laughter preceded them down the stairs.

   
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