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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80. Press Conference

The phone buzzing at his waist startled Kaoru and he dropped the ribbon wrapped bundle of mistletoe with a curse. Trying not to overbalance and fall off the ladder as he put the finishing touches on the decorations in the main Library, Kaoru fumbled to grab the phone before it went off again. The message had him scrambling to get down.
 

 

We are going down now. They had to open up all the Ballrooms of the Hotel in order to accommodate the number of press. Wish us luck brother – we need it. HH

“Guys!! Renge! Mai! Get in here, the Press conference is about to start,” Kaoru ran to the foot of the stairs and yelled. Waiting for the others he grabbed the remote and put on the local news channel. Falling back on the couch, he sent a response.

 

 

You have it. Now kick ass and get back here as soon as you can. KH

Tamaki and Renge ran into the room, Tamaki’s fingers flying as he typed on his phone. “Kyo just sent me a text. They are starting.”

“Already on it,” Kaoru said as he grabbed a pillow and wrapped his arms around it, eyes never leaving the screen.

The rest of the group made their way into the room and took up seats around the TV. Tamaki and Renge taking either side of Kaoru, while Mai sat on the floor next to Renge and Hani and Takashi sat on the armrests. In unspoken understanding, none of them spoke as the breaking news logo flashed on the screen. Tamaki grabbed the remote and turned it up.

“… We are waiting for the HDC contingent to enter the room. We were informed that both Kyouya Ootori and Haruhi Fujioka will be speaking as well as Yuzuha Hitachiin. As you know there was an uproar in the conservative community earlier this week when Ms. Fujioka and Mr. Ootori came out on the red carpet as both being in a relationship with Hikaru Hitachiin. Kyouya Ootori’s father Yoshio Ootori publically made a statement that has caused controversy and either enraged or enflamed people on either side of the political spectrum. Now we have received word that Yoshio Ootori has been arrested and charged with kidnapping, battery and being an accessory to sexual assault. For those of you who are wondering why the French media is making such a big deal over some Japanese businessman and his family, let me remind you that HDG Design Group, led by Yuzuha Hitachiin, has their global offices based in Paris and currently employs over 2500 people across the European Union. Ootori Global Enterprises owns several hospitals across the world including one in Paris and one in Lyon. Aside from their respective businesses this situation has also sparked intense debate among the LGBT and conservative communities who feel that the relationship among Hikaru Hitachiin, Haruhi Fujioka, and Kyouya Ootori opens a door to a wider discussion on marriage and equality rights.

They are entering the room…”

 

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

Haruhi felt like her heart was going to burst out of her chest. The flashing of the cameras and the murmur of the crowd echoed in her ears along with the tympani of her heartbeat. Making her way across the stage, she felt Kyouya’s hand brush lightly against her back. Pulling as much strength from the contact as she could, she sat down in her assigned seat between her boyfriends, and looked up into the wall to wall crowd. On either side of her, Kyouya and Hikaru did the same. Risking a glance, she saw the same bored expression that Kyouya had frequently worn at Ouran - an expression that she later learned was his way of hiding his emotions. Hikaru had his face turned away from her, but she felt his hand brush against her and give a quick squeeze. On the other side of the podium holding all of the microphones, Ranka, Remy, and Akira took their seats. Haruhi’s heart settled a tiny bit as Akira caught her eyes and gave a small smile.

All attention focused immediately on the center of the room as Yuzuha stepped up to the podium. In a clear voice she greeted the crowd. “Hello and thank you for coming. As you well know, this week there has been a bit of an uproar that has centered around Yoshio Ootori, his son Kyouya, my son Hikaru, and a friend of theirs Haruhi Fujioka. Some of you may wonder why I am leading this press conference as at first appearance HDG is only nominally involved. Aside from the fact that both Hikaru and Ms. Fujioka are both employees of HDG, an instance occurred last night at the Fashion Week Grand Ball hosted by HDG that necessitates the direct involvement of myself and the legal team at HDG. Last night one of my employees, Ryouiji Fujioka, known to his friends as Ranka, was kidnapped from the Ball, sexually assaulted, and beaten. Ranka Fujioka is also the father of Haruhi Fujioka. The person who arranged for the kidnapping, assault, and battery was Yoshio Ootori.”

A hand shot up and a voice shouted out, “How do you know that Yoshio Ootori was directly involved with the kidnapping attempt?”

“Because we have video of him talking to Ranka while Ranka was bound and tied in an unused warehouse.”

The room erupted. So many voices shouted questions at once that made them all unintelligible. Yuzuha held up her hand for silence and called on another reporter once the din had settled.

“How can you be sure that the video wasn’t doctored?”

“The video was taken by a well-respected member of the press, who happened to see the kidnapping as it happened. This person and another attendee followed the perpetrators, while sending the information to the Morinozouka Security team. Akira Morinozouka to my left was in charge of security for the Ball that night, and by working with the Police, they were able to rescue Ranka.”

“Mr. Morinozouka, what security measures did you have in place at the Ball?”

Akira bent forward to speak into the microphone, “We had over 50 security officers patrolling the estate. Going into the Ball, we were aware that threats had been made regarding certain members of the HDG contingent, so in addition to the security patrol, Mr. Hitachiin, Ms. Fujioka, Mr. Ootori, and Ms. Hitachiin also had undercover bodyguards assigned to them. It is my biggest regret that we did not have additional security assigned to Mr. Fujioka. At the time, we were not aware that he would be targeted.”

“How were the perpetrators able to kidnap Mr. Fujioka if there were security patrols everywhere?”

“They used a catering van. We are still trying to determine at this time if the van was stolen or there was a deeper plot that we missed. All of the catering was done by a very well-respected, vetted, and bonded company that has been used before so there was no reason to suspect prior to the incident.”

“But how was the perpetrator able to get Mr. Fujioka into the van?”

Ranka took a deep breath. Leaning into the microphone he spoke, “I was drugged. The drugs used made it look like I was drunk. My attacker used that to his advantage as we just looked like any other couple that had over-indulged.”

“Mr. Fujioka, you say you looked like any other couple, could you clarify what you mean by that?”

“My attacker was in a very high-end tuxedo and looked like any of the other 500 male guests at the party.” Ranka’s knuckles were white as he gripped the edge of the table. I know what the next question is going to be… Please don’t ask.

From the other side of the table Haruhi could see her father struggling and knew what was going on his mind. Meeting his eyes, she nodded to show her support.

The reporter was undeterred, “and you, Mr. Fujioka?”

“I was in drag, so while a male/male couple might have caught a security patrol attention for a brief moment, the appearance of a female who had too much to drink and was being escorted out was not. I could make a comment here about harmful assumptions, but this is not the time or place.”

“Could you please clarify? You were in Drag – meaning you were dressed as a female?”

Yuzuha put her hand on Ranka’s shoulder. “For the last six months Mr. Fujioka has been under contract with HDG as a consultant for a new line of designer clothing that will cater to the emerging population that enjoys alternative expressions of beauty. He is a well-known Drag Queen in Tokyo and as such was an extremely valuable resource. On the night of the Ball, he was preparing to debut the first item in the collection.”

“Does that mean you are gay? Is that why your daughter is ok with sleeping with two men?”

The room erupted again as everyone at the tables except Haruhi jumped to their feet.

Yuzuha slammed her hands on the podium and said forcefully, “Enough!! This press conference is about the attack on Mr. Fujioka and the actions that he and others will be taking. It is not a forum to indulge your need for prurient gossip.”

“Yuzuha, please. I would like to respond,” Haruhi said into her microphone. “Aside from my father’s drag persona, which is his artistic expression and something that have always fully supported, and there is no need for him to justify it, I want to address the underlying intent behind the way you phrased your question. You are implying that my father’s alternative lifestyle in some way has made me a, pardon the phrase, Slut, and therefore anything bad that happens is either his or my fault rather than the fault of the person who committed the crime. Aside from blaming the victim here, and make no doubt, my father was definitely the victim of a horrific crime, you are insinuating that my relationship with Hikaru and Kyouya is something that is wrong. It may be currently outside the main stream views of society, but the love I feel for both of these men is very real. I am honored that they love me as well.”

“A marriage should be between a man and a woman!” a reporter shouted from the back.

Hikaru glared out into the audience, “I don’t know who said that, but even if it was true considering same-sex marriage is legal in France, it’s not the point. None of us are talking about marriage. We are still young and while we are happy in our relationship, marriage is a long way off. Seriously, how exactly does our relationship affect you?”

Several hands shot in the air. Yuzuha picked one that she knew was from a reporter who worked for a LGBT rights paper.

“First let me say, that I support you. To answer your question, though, you are high profile enough that while you may not directly effect day to day interactions with people, you are a symbol that opens up a conversation and we all know that the far right conservative party does not want to talk about equality or the right to love who we want. But my actual question is for Mr. Ootori. Your father has been very vocal to the media that he feels that you have been conned and trapped in a situation that you cannot get out of. How do you respond to that?”

“I have separated myself from Yoshio Ootori and all of his holdings. My choice to love whomever I want aside, having worked in his company for several years, I do not respect his business practices or his unethical scheming to intimidate or blackmail those that oppose his views. I have been financially independent from Yoshio Ootori for two years. His blatant disrespect for my girlfriend and her family has been the final straw. I disassociated myself formally from him last week and no longer consider him my father. He has no rights or responsibilities with the title. I am keeping the Ootori name as an honor to my ancestors, but I have no kinship with Yoshio Ootori.”

The room sat in silence for a moment at the end of Kyouya’s speech. Tentatively another hand raised.

“So what is going to happen now?”

Yuzuha stepped back up to the podium, “As you know, at this point Yoshio Ootori has been charged with several crimes against Ranka Fujioka. While lawyers from HDG will be representing Mr. Fujioka, his case is separate. HDG will also be bringing slander charges against Mr. Ootori and from what I understand Kyouya Ootori may be bringing a civil suit as well. We are working to keep the trials in France as we feel there will be more impartiality here. We will keep you informed if anything else changes. Thank You.”

 

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

“…and there you have it, a stunning amount of information that will be the discussion for many in the weeks to come. We will keep you informed of any new circumstances as they develop. We now return you to your regularly scheduled program.”

Kaoru let out a long sigh of breath. “That went better than I thought it would. Hopefully that will keep the vultures at bay for a bit.”

“It gives them something to chew on,” Mai said. “I was worried for a minute there, but Haruhi handled that beautifully and Kyouya – wow!”

“That’s why we love them,” Hani grinned. “Now we show them when they get here.”

“Yes,” Takashi said quietly.

Tamaki reached out and shut off the TV, before turning it on the stereo and setting the channel to a Holiday station. “We have maybe an hour before they get here. Let’s finish the decorations, so when they get here, they can just relax.”

“Sounds good Tama-chan.”

As one, the Hosts moved towards the last of the boxes holding the decorations. With a festive spirit and the upbeat music in the background they moved toward the fresh fir tree that stood in the far corner of the Library.

   
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