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. =)


72. Clarity

Jon opened his mouth to start to tell the story, but Kyouya held up a hand. “Wait. The others will want to hear this and it will save time if you don’t have to repeat it twice. Follow me.” Without looking back he strode purposefully to the group surrounding Yuzuha Hitachiin. Approaching Akira Morinozuka he whispered urgently into his ear. Akira’s face tightened as he glanced across the group to Yorihisa Haninozuka and gave him a hand signal. Without another word, they slipped off and four men dressed like guests but with the unmistakable bearing of professional bodyguards, took their place.

“Gather your friends and meet Yorihisa and me in the Dojo. Do NOT rush out. I know this is time sensitive, but we do not want to attract any undue attention if we can help it. I am going to see what I can find out from the security patrols,” Akira said urgently.

“Yes Sir,” Kyouya tried to look casual as he walked back to where Haruhi and the rest of the group were dancing, but the churning bitter feeling must have shown through, because the moment he got close to his lovers, they immediately knew something had gone wrong.

“What is it?” Haruhi asked immediately before her gaze flicked over the couple standing awkwardly behind Kyouya. “Who are they?”

“This is Melissa and Jon, Tamaki’s friend Marika’s partners,” Kyouya said. “We need to get up to the dojo as soon as possible. Something has happened. But we can’t just rush out.”

“Kyouya, tell us what happened,” Hikaru demanded as he grabbed Haruhi’s hand and immediately glanced around the room, instinctively seeking out his friends and the people that he cared about.

Kaoru immediately appeared on Hikaru’s left, still holding Renge’s hand, drawn by the spike of fear that shot through their twin bond. “What’s going on? Where’s Tamaki?!?”

Kyouya glanced up to see that a small group was now forming around them as Hani, Takashi, Zhi, Sakura, and Kaziki all approached rapidly.

“We need to get all of you out of here, right now,” Zhi’s voice was businesslike and brisk. Turning to Melissa and Jon, he said loudly enough to be heard by some of the other guests who had started to notice that there was something juicy happening. “You must be Tamaki’s friends. He got something on his jacket and ran upstairs to change, but I know he wanted to greet you. Why don’t you follow me and I will give you a tour on the way?”

“Thanks,” Jon replied with a sense of relief in his voice. “I was hoping to get to see more of the building.”

With a smile that never quite met his eyes, Zhi replied, “Follow me.”



Haruhi could feel the urgency in Kyouya’s hand as it lay on her lower back. Has something happened to Tamaki? The tension in her neck and shoulders grew as the group reached the door to the dojo. Upon entering, she was approached by a grim-faced Akira Morinozuka.

“Haruhi-chan,” Akira took her hand and held it as he spoke the words that had her heart sinking, “It appears that your father has been kidnapped by Yoshio Ootori’s men. They were clever in their attempt. We are trying to determine what happened.” He turned to Jon and Melissa. “Perhaps now that we are in a private place you can tell us what you know.”

Jon stepped forward, “When Marika, Mel and I got here, Tamaki was waiting for us. We were talking for a bit when he saw your dad [he looked at Haruhi] coming down the stairs. Your father was stopped at the bottom by a handsome man in a suit. It looked like they were flirting, though we were too far away to hear their conversation. Tamaki explained a bit about your family and then thought it might be nice to introduce us to Ranka. When we started to follow them, we saw the guy pull Ranka around a corner and inject him with something that made him pliable and look drunk. Tamaki and Marika decided to follow them, but told us to warn you. He gave me that bracelet to vouch for us, since you hadn’t met us yet.”

Haruhi hand shook as she reached out and took the silver bracelet she had given Tamaki a year earlier. Tears started streaming down her face and both Kyouya and Hikaru pulled her closer. “Where are they now?”

Akira put his hand to his ear, touching the ear bud communication devices all on guard duty were wearing, and spoke a few rapid-fire sentences outlining what he knew. He jaw visibly clenched as he listened closely to the conversation on the wire among his security staff. “Ok it appears that two vehicles have left out the small gate being used for deliveries. The first was from a catering vendor that had previously been cleared and the second was young master Suoh. Now might be a good time for someone to call young Tamaki.”

All the host club members ran to the dressing stations they had been using earlier. Kyouya was the first to reach his phone and without looking at the keyboard called Tamaki, automatically putting it on speakerphone so everyone in the room could hear.

“Took you long enough,” Tamaki’s voice was tense as he answered the phone, skipping the formality of a greeting. “I take it Jon and Melissa were able to find you and gave you the run down on what is going on?”

“Yes,” Kyouya answered. “Where are you at?”

“Following a van from La Patisserie Boulange and trying to stay inconspicuous. The way all the vendors were parked blocking the garage, the only vehicle I could get out was the Aston. Unfortunately it is a bit too high profile to blend in easily with the traffic in this part of town. I don’t think they have seen us yet, since they aren’t trying to make any evasive moves, but I don’t want to alert them unnecessarily. It looks like we are heading South into the industrial area outside Paris, but I am not certain. Can you track my phone?”

“We are working on that as we speak,” Yorihisa cut in as he typed away on a tablet that had appeared in his hand. “Ok we have a fix on your location and are alerting the Parisian police now. I am also sending a few specialized units from House Zuka. It would be better if we can get the police to be the rescuing party, but I will not leave Ranka Fujioka in the clutches of Yoshio Ootori for long. If they are unable to cooperate, we will take matters into our own hands.”

“You might want to hurry, they just turned down a road that leads to an area of abandoned warehouses,” Marika’s voice came over the speaker. “I did a story on them a while ago. Most of them were torched in a drug bust, but there is one or two that may still be standing. The whole area though is condemned and littered with debris. There’s no way we are going to be able to get the Aston in there without alerting them to our presence.”

“We don’t want you getting hurt. Park somewhere and get out of the way,” Akira responded. “We have your location and if the police aren’t there in 15 minutes, my staff will be.”

“We will do so,” Tamaki’s voice confirmed. “Hey Kyo, is there any chance that your father has holdings out here? I thought Ootori Group’s holding were mainly in Japan and Asia, but there is something not quite right about this. I know your dad is a cutthroat businessman, but kidnapping? That seems out of character.”

“I stopped underestimating my father a long time ago,” Kyouya replied. “I don’t know of any hold-.” A sudden thought hit him with such ferocity he staggered a few step and gripped the back of a chair. A chain of seemingly unrelated events clicking into place.

“What is it, love,” Haruhi rushed over to put her arms around him as his visage went pale.

“I don’t want to belie….,”

“What is it Kyo?” Tamaki interjected, concern for his best friend coming through the phone line.

Kyouya took a deep breath and asked tonelessly, “Marika, when did you do the story on the drug bust? And what was the name of the company who owned the buildings?” He held Haruhi’s hand in a death grip as he waited for the response.

“It had to have been May or June of last year. The police did the drug bust and some minor players were sent to prison for a few years, but they were never able to tie it to a higher cartel. There was some speculation that it might be tied to organized crime, but again there was nothing that they could pin down. The company who owned the buildings Dashart, Inc turned out to be a shell company under another series of shells. I tried to dig deeper, but was never able to find the actual parent company.”

“No… oh gods… nonononononononononoo,” Kyouya crumpled into the chair.

“What is it lover?” Hikaru put his hands on Kyouya’s shoulders as he glanced worriedly at Haruhi.

“I never thought he…,”

Akira stepped into view, “Kyouya-chan, you are an honorary member of my House. Whatever protection House Zuka can provide for you it is yours. But if you know something that may impact this rescue, I need to alert both my team and the police.”

“I was doing some research through the Ootori Group computers a few months ago, when I came across an email that mentioned the destruction by fire of a few minor holdings last May. It never mentioned the location of those holdings, which I thought odd, but before I could ask my father about it, the entire email train was wiped from the servers. While that seemed slightly odd at the time, it has been a routine practice to purge the email system every few months to maintain efficiency and storage space. I then forgot about it. About month later, my father came downstairs one morning in a foul mood yelling into his phone. I only caught parts of the conversation but from what I could figure some minor Ootori cousin was convicted of a drug charge. I remember hearing the name Dashart and my father say something about having to clean up the mess before they found out about it.” Kyouya took a deep breath. “I thought at the time he meant the board and stakeholders, but now I wonder if he meant something else.”

“What else?” Hikaru asked.

“Contrary to what the business world thinks, Ootori Group has been struggling to stay afloat for the last few years. It’s part of why I started my own company to start with, to show that even as the third son, I had a head for business that my brothers did not and that I would be a worthy successor to turn the company around. You all know the rest of that… but what you don’t know is that I still get the financials. It is probably an oversite on my father’s part, but in the last two years there have been unexplained increases of cash flow that don’t correspond to anything.” He paused a moment and gripped Haruhi’s hand before asking, “Marika – What type of drugs were confiscated in the drug bust?”

Marika’s voice came on the line, “high-grade narcotics mostly from what I remember.”

Kyouya’s nod was grim. “Ootori Group owns a few small pharmaceutical companies as well as hospitals. But their profits have officially remained flat or had only modest increases in the last couple of years. It’s not enough to explain sudden influxes of cash unless the cash is to allow production off the books.”

“What are you saying, love?” Haruhi said quietly as the rest of the group all turned to look at him.

“There’s only one entity I can think of who would be able to front that much cash and have the ability to cause Yoshio Ootori to sign a deal with the devil so he wouldn’t lose face in the business community.” Kyouya looked directly at Akira Morinozuka.

“Yakuza.” Akira responded, making the word a statement not a question.

“Yakuza,” Kyouya agreed.

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