Title: So close, so far 04/12
Genre: AU, fantasy, romantic, angst
Pairing: Junba, Sakuraiba, Ohmiya
Summary: Prince Aiba is the future king of Rainbow Kingdom who has to choose his future partner between marquis Sakurai and earl Matsumoto. The choice seems easy for Aiba who already loves one of them but what if a spell brings him far away from him? Can he believe in him or will he fall in the stained arms of the other?
"What do you mean you were bored?" His master cried out shocked.
"Exactly what you heard. Being all alone for two years is boring. So I helped here and there."
"It's not help, Nino! You ruined the prince's happiness!"
"What?" Ninomiya asked pissed off. He didn't want to be scolded when they just reunited.
"Before coming here, I did a little ritual of divination. You know what? The prince is meant to be together with Sakurai! You don't even know what you did!"
Ninomiya never saw his master so angered. It meant just one thing: what he did was really bad. His master always knew what was right or bad and Nino completely trusted him. Well, we are talking about Ohno Satoshi, the most famous white magician in the whole Kingdom. He was sought after by too many lords because of his powers but he always chose to live in their little house, teaching Ninomiya some magic and sometimes going away on a journey. Plus, he was the godfather of the prince. He helped him to grow up. So if there was someone who knew what to do for the sake of the Kingdom, that was Satoshi.
"Do you even know what Matsumoto plans to do?" The white magician asked. Ninomiya shook his head and felt a bit stupid and helpless. "If you knew, you would have never helped Matsumoto." He said harsh but then looked at the black magician and his heart squeezed. He wasn't able to resist at that cute pout of his lover. "Oh well, what's done is done. I'll help you to clean your mess." He said leaving a sweet kiss on Ninomiya's forehead. The latter smiled brightly and hugged his lover asking: "Where do we start?"
The queen looked out of the window like she was trying to find something in the darkness of the night. The worry was clearly shown on her beautiful face. Her step-son had feelings for the marquis Sakurai therefore chances for Matsumoto to become the next king were low. She couldn't let it happen. For their plan to be successful, the earl needed to marry the prince at all costs.
"What are you thinking, my Lady?" The Queen was startled by the sudden whisper in her ear. She was so lost in her thoughts that she didn't even notice earl Matsumoto coming in her room.
"I always wonder what strange ability you can have to be able to sneak unnoticed in my room." Matsumoto just smirked and placed a kiss on the queen's shoulder. "Jun, we need to do something." She stated and turned around to face his lover.
"I already solved that problem." The earl smirked again satisfied.
"You don't understand! The little fairy has feelings for Sakurai."
"Eh? Did the prince tell it?" Jun asked confused.
"No, he's not so stupid. But I have eyes and I saw how he reacted when he heard Sakurai's name. You won't have any chance, Jun!"
"Damn! I should have killed him." The earl cursed through his teeth and the queen stared at him with a worried expression. She opened her mouth to say something but was immediately cut by Matsumoto. "They will never meet anyway. I just have to fake Sakurai's death and then the prince's heart will be mine." The earl smiled pleased with his own plan but when he looked at the jealous pout of the queen, he couldn't help but chuckle and rising her chin with a finger, he murmured at only an inch from her lips:
"Don't be upset. My heart will always be yours." And then he kissed her passionately.
The sun was already up in the sky when the prince woke up. He felt warm and relaxed like when he woke up next to Sho. But while looking around him, he noticed he was still alone. He was covered with a blanket that he didn't remember to have used the night before. He tried to call his lover's name but nobody replied or to put it better, he couldn't hear Sho's reply. The marquis was still next to his lover with a tired expression. His sleep was haunted by strange nightmares of Masaki not being able to see him but when he woke up, he realized it wasn't just a bad dream. His lovely prince couldn't really hear nor see him and Sakurai didn't understand the reason.
"Masaki... I'm here..." Sho whispered with a discouraged tone and teary eyes.
"Ah, Yabai!" Aiba cried out all of a sudden, startling his lover. "I'm late!" And with that said, he rushed out of the cottage and riding his horse at full speed, he went away.
The marquis was left alone and although the sun was already warm, he felt a sad coldness squeezing his heart. Why Masaki couldn't see him? Was he joking? Of course not! It was impossible for Masaki to fake in a so true way. Sakurai needed some explanation and he needed it immediately so he rode his horse to the royal palace.
He searched through the whole palace for Masaki and he didn't even mind if someone could see him in that crazy state. "Masaki!" He kept on screaming hoping to hear an answer but his screams stopped when he reached the prince's bedroom. He heard someone talking and one voice was his lover's. Although just some seconds ago he acted like crazy, now he felt to be more cautious and slowly opened the door not to be noticed. There were two strange men in front of Aiba. He recognized one of them as the magician Ninomiya and the other one was the famous white magician Ohno, the godfather of the prince. The marquis sneaked next to them to hear the conversation. If nobody could see him, he might as well use this chance.
"What do you mean that you're sorry?" The prince asked to Ohno.
"You need to give up on Sakurai." Ninomiya's voice was almost inaudible and his head was low.
"How...?" Masaki was shocked. These men knew about his relationship with Sho. Well, one of them was his godfather who always seemed to know anything since Masaki was a child. "What do you know exactly?" He asked cautious.
"You have an affair with the marquis Sakurai and you planned to marry him, aren't you, Masaki-chan?" Satoshi replied with a bitter and sad smile.
Sakurai's eyes widened. He realized that Masaki was planning to settle things with him and he was very serious all along about their relationship.
"Your father gave you the chance to choose between Sakurai and Matsumoto." The white magician kept on talking.
"Yes, but I've already done my choice. I'm going to marry Sho."
Sho couldn't feel more happy hearing those words but the smile painted on his face disappeared immediately when he heard what they said next. The prince was a bit aggressive because he didn't really know where these two magicians were going with their talk so he asked resolute: "I don't understand at all, Oh-chan. What do you want from me?"
"Masaki-chan..." His godfather said with a sad tone and looked at Masaki with worried eyes before saying: "Sakurai-san is dead."
The air in the room froze. Ninomiya and Ohno held their breath while the prince tried to understand the situation. "What...? You're joking, right?"
"Unfortunately we are not." Ohno bowed. "Yesterday we kept on looking for Sakurai-san for the whole evening and night but we couldn't find him anywhere. His father sent a messenger yesterday night, asking for his son who didn't come back for the whole day. This early morning the royal guards found him dead in the near forest. It seems he jumped from the cliff."
Aiba couldn't believe those words. Sho would never do something like kill himself. And for what reason? There wasn't any! No, there was something suspicious. "It's not him." He murmured with teary eyes. "It can't be him."
"His father already came. He recognized the corpse." Ohno said with sadness and looked worried at Ninomiya who didn't say a word.
Masaki's legs started to tremble and he fell on the floor crying and repeating: "Why?" The two magicians just stared at him not knowing how to comfort him.
"Masaki..." Sho went right in front of his lover and cried out: "I'm here! HERE!" He tried to touch Aiba's cheek but as before his hands passed through the prince's face. "Masaki..." He whispered like it was the end of everything. He fell on his knees and joined his lover's cries, madly punching the floor.
In the meanwhile, Ninomiya approached the prince, guilt was showing all over his face. He put a hand on Aiba's shoulder before saying with broken voice: "I... I'm sorry." Masaki totally ignored him because he was too confused and focused on his own pain. "The body is in the infirmary right now..." Ninomiya stopped and tried to hold his tears. "If you want to see him for the last time."
"I want to see him." Aiba stated staring blankly at the floor. Ohno knelt down and raising the prince's face with his hands, he gently said:
"I don't think it's a good idea right now, Masaki-chan."
But the Prince wouldn't want to hear anyone. "I will repeat myself just once: I want to see him."
Sakurai felt the urge to let them know that he was there and while the trio was going away he shouted as loud as he could: "I'M HERE!"
Ohno felt a shiver all over his back and turned around. Sakurai met his eyes and felt like the magician could see him. "Yes, I'm here!" He repeated with expectation but Ohno didn't hear him. The door was closed in front of a confused and hurt Sho who wasn't able to move for the shock. It took some minutes to clear his mind and realize the situation. So what was him right now? A ghost? Impossible! Something wasn't right. He didn't remember killing himself. And why? He didn't have any reason for suicide. Plus, he spent the whole evening waiting for Aiba at the cottage and although the prince couldn't see him, they slept together. He needed to find the truth but where to start? First he will wait for the return of Masaki and will try again to talk to him and then he will ask the help of those strange magicians. They surely could help him.
"Yes, that's the only way." He said to himself and sat on the big bed, waiting.