His phone rang several times but Kyouya ignored it and let it go to voicemail. He knew that it was Erika and he knew he couldn't answer it. He and Erika had a fight earlier that night which ended in her storming out of his apartment. He listened to the cold ring because he wasn't ready to apologize yet. He didn't know why they always ended up arguing over the most trivial things but here they were again.
She wanted to have a Christmas party to announce their engagement and invite both his mother and father. But with his father's busy schedule Kyouya knew that it would be near impossible to get his parents in the same room. Not to mention awkward as well. He thought he was being perfectly logical but Erika insisted that they tried. The argument started then.
Kyouya knew he should pick up the phone and apologize but he was too prideful, too stubborn and too damn stupid to see his mistake.
When the phone rang for the last time, Kyouya wondered if Erika finally gave up. A part of him knew that a passionate woman like her would only be silent for so long. Tomorrow she would be yelping in his ear about family and try to convince him once again. Despite himself, he smiled as he imagined the scene. He could imagine her flushed face and fiery eyes. Kyouya knew that he would give in, they would make up and wait for next fight to run in the same circle again.
That should've been how it went.
It was noon the next day and Kyouya waited outside of the university for Erika. Her class was ending soon and he decided to pick her up. He was prepared to argue with her again but he wasn't prepared to wait for half an hour. He checked his phone again but didn't see any missed calls. There was only one from the night of their fight. He didn't bother to listen to it since he knew that it was probably an angry rant.
Another hour passed and Kyouya found himself sighing. Where was she? It wasn't unusual for her to give him the cold shoulder after a fight so he told himself that she was probably complaining to Sanda or Nozomi. He would just have to visit Takeru's café later to face her but until then he would work on his apology.
It took several tries but Kyouya managed to call his father. The call was short, as it always was, but his old man surprisingly agreed to spend Christmas with him and his mother. For the first time Kyouya realized that this year would be the first time they would spending Christmas as a family again. They would most likely spend Christmas as the broken family they were…
Why was he even thinking of that now? His parents had been separated since he was a kid and it shouldn't bother him anymore. And it didn't until her. He closed his eyes and could see Erika. She was his new family.
The things I do for you, Kyouya grinned to himself. What kind of spell did she put over him that he faced his broken family again? He couldn't remember another person he felt so strongly that he would move beyond the ice wall he built around himself. She was the only one.
After he said goodbye to his father, Kyouya made his way to the café. To Erika.
He could already see the stupidly happy reaction she would make when he tell her that he convinced his father to visit for Christmas. It was the thought of her smile that always made him give in rather than her screaming during an argument. That smile that he fully expected to greet him for the rest of his life.
His loyal wolf girl.
She wasn't there. Kyouya looked into the café but couldn't see her. He wanted to see Erika so continued searching for her rather than stopping to speak with Takeru. His first thought was that she was waiting for him at his apartment. She had a key and would often be there when he wasn't home.
Kyouya came home to an empty house. That fact alone told him that she was still upset and was most likely avoiding him. He took out his phone to call her and was surprised when he heard her phone ring outside his door. His heart tightened at the thought of her being so close to him and rushed to open the door but he didn't let it show when he answered the door.
His irritated words were cut off when he found himself facing two police officers rather than Erika. They looked awkwardly from him to Erika's phone in their hand. After a moment, they asked him if they could speak with him in the privacy of his apartment. Sirens rang in his mind but he let them in.
Sorry. That was the first word out of their mouth which set a stone in his stomach. Then another stone was set on his heart when they placed Erika's phone in front of him and explained why they were there.
Erika had been in an accident.
The explanation sounded like a buzz to him as he tried to process the information. She was crossing the street when a car ran the red light and hit her. But he simply couldn't force that fact through his denial. Dead? He saw her just yesterday! She couldn't be gone in those short twenty four hours. He felt life slip away from him at the thought and couldn't even find the energy to summon anger.
She left him alone.
He didn't respond when the police said that Sanda told them to leave Erika phone with him. Then they said their condolences and let themselves out. Kyouya simply sat in front of Erika phone. He sat there staring at it for a long while. Why would Sanda tell them to give him Erika's phone?
He reached out to touch the charm hanging from it but couldn't. It looked so cold while he remembered thinking of the silly thing warm when he first bought it for her. The dog charm reminded him of her but he told her that it was another collar… Why did he say that? Why was he always saying things like that?
He pulled his hand back and took out his own phone. With numb fingers, he listened to the last message she left him.
"Kyouya? I'm really sorry about bringing up your parents but we need to talk this out. I want this Christmas to be a happy one since I'm going to be a part of your family now. Can we meet and-"
The noise in the background cut her off. But the sound that cut his heart was the dull thud of a phone being dropped. He didn't know why he listened to the entire message when the rest was screaming and noise. Kyouya didn't need to replay the message to hear her voice. It sounded so unsure and worried. It sounded so unlike the sunny voice he knew that he thought it was a stranger's.
They've screamed and fought with each other so often that it seem to take up most of their relationship but those weren't the moment he remembered now. The small moments, that would be insignificant any other day, replayed themselves in his mind. No matter how small his act of kindness were, they always made him smile. No matter how many fights they had, they always found a way back to each other. No matter what anyone said, they were happy.
The cycle of anger, tears and happiness they had was broken. It was broken because he was too prideful, too stubborn and too damn stupid to see his mistake. If he didn't wait and answered his phone, she would be safe in his arms. But he didn't…
Even knowing that it was useless, he called her phone. He purposely let it go to voicemail. He knew hearing her voice would only break his own heart further but it was nothing less than what he deserved. Even if it was a recording, his heart twitched when he heard her voice.
"This is Erika! I can't come to the phone because- Kyouya please stop, I'm trying to set this up! Hey give it back Kyouya!"
"She's busy and can't come to the phone."
"Kyouya that's rude. I'm your girlfriend so you need to treat me better. Tsch, remind me why I love you again."
"What's so good about me?" Kyouya voice answered the beep. He called her phone again and again, thinking that if he found an answer God would give him a second chance. Give him back the woman he loved. The woman whose warm smile freed him from the cold walls around him. The woman that he would be holding now if he answered
But everything was too little, too late.