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Broken Promises

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"Oi, Heathcliff!"

The short, black-haired boy called out across the courtyard to the blonde, who was sitting in the garden with his back turned. 

He jumped, but didn't turn around. 

"Ah…..hey, Shino." 

If you listened hard enough, you could tell something was wrong. You could tell he was upset about something. But what, exactly? 

"Heathcliff. Oz needs us in the North." Shino said. 

"You're coming, right?" 

"Ah...Y-Yeah! I'll go….", Heath stuttered a little bit. 

There went his plans for the night. 

Heathcliff mounted his broom and took off ahead of Shino. He wanted to just finish. He wanted to get as much as possible done and be back before everyone.

Why was he so eager?

He soon landed in a snowy clearing, not far from the grounds to which he was supposed to be inside of. He trekked through and Oz came into view. 

"You're early." he points out. "Where's Shino?"

Heathcliff sighs. "Behind me. He'll be here soon."

"Good then." Oz turns his head. "You can get started now."

"Thank you, Master Oz." Heathcliff thanks him. 

Soon, Shino arrived and landed right beside Heathcliff, who was busy with his own task. 

"Heath!" he shouts.

Heathcliff jumps. "S-Shino! What took you so long?"

"What was that for!?" Shino spat.

Heath averted his eyes. "What was….what for?" 

Shino stamped his heel. "You know what! What if something happened? Why did you take off so far ahead!?" 

Ah, right.

Suddenly, Heath's head felt heavy. He was so caught in his thoughts lately, he forgot. He forgot how he and Shino were bound. 

How selfish for him to think what he was while his best friend reprimands him for being reckless.

That's all he was, right?

It was certainly all he knew. 

He stumbled over to Oz. 

"Master Oz, forgive me. I'm…a little tired. May I go back to the manor, please?" 

Oz glared, surprised. "Aren't you usually the last one to leave, though?"

"Y-Yeah….today is just a little off. I don't think I slept very well last night. If I may, please excuse me."

Heath bowed, and started to speed walk to his broom. He could feel the tears coming on, only to freeze on his face due to the extreme cold of the North country. He mounted his broom again and took off once more. 

"HEATH! OI, HEATHCLIFF!" 

He ignored Shino's desperate, angry calls. He watched Oz clap down on his shoulder, disallowing him from following Heath back home. 

Selfish as it was, he was glad that Shino wasn't allowed to follow him back.

Of course it was selfish. 

Here he was, wishing he wasn't a wizard, when others would kill for the power. That was the most selfish wish he could make, right?

If only the only way out didn't also hurt Shino.

The tears flowed more as he neared closer to the manor. He had to dry his eyes before landing. All everyone knew was that he was shy and quiet, and no one knew deeper.  Not even Shino. If anyone were to see him cry, they'd be curious and Heath would clam up. 

Heathcliff landed in the courtyard looking like he had before he left. Completely normal, right? These thoughts still haven't left his mind, and now all he can think of is Shino and how he'll react. Well, he was already selfish enough to think these thoughts, so why not act on them? That's what Heath thought, anyway. 

Heathcliff dragged his feet inside and up the stairs to his bedroom. No one seemed to be in sight. He took this opportunity to clean up his room, and pack up everything all neatly and nicely. He opened his door quietly, as if he expected someone to be waiting for him, to ask what he's going to do. Thankfully, no one was. He shut the door behind him and sank down. 

The tears were back. He bit down and buried his face in his sleeves. He didn't want to sit for too long in case Shino was on his way back, so he pulled himself back up. Heath pulled a box out of the closet and put all of his trinkets and parts inside of it. He labelled it:

"For Shino, should anything go wrong."

Heath dropped the box back into the closet. All of his clothes were hanging up neatly….there was no need to mess with those for the time being. His nightstand was cleared in a matter of minutes, another box taped shut and stowed away into the closet. Only one thing remained outside of a box or drawer; a pocket knife that Shino gave to him for defense back when they first made the promise. 

He left it on his desktop, what used to be his mini-workshop. Maybe leaving it out isn't such a good idea; he stows it into his jacket pocket. 

No. 

He takes it back out.

Staring at it, the sharp edge of the beautiful silver blade, the H.B engraved into the handle, ever so delicately. He felt sick looking at it. He felt his skin paling and the desire growing larger in his heart and mind. 

Just do it.

He won't have to deal with you anymore.

It'll all be over. 

It's a risk to take, but he screams. He prays no one hears him.

"GET OUT OF MY HEAD!"

With flourish, Heathcliff lets out several bold sobs in a row as he drags the once-stainless silver blade across the skin of his pale wrists.

Shino bursts through the door, frightening Heath. The blood pooling on Heath's wrists drips onto the bedsheets and he begins to writhe in pain. 

"Heathcliff, what the hell!?" 

Shino snatches the blade out of Heath's hands and grabs him by the shirt collar. 

"What the hell are you doing? What is this!?" 

He's shaking. Tears are welling up in Shino's eyes.

"P-Put me...down….", Heathcliff manages. 

He drops to the floor. Using the bedframe, he pulls himself back up and retrieves the blade from by the window. 

"You…. weren't supposed to see that…"

The only feature of his face that was visible was the crooked, sheepish smile plastered onto his lips.

Shino balls his fists. "You were going to hide this!?"

Heath tilts his eyes upward. Tear streaks are visible and so is the pain he feels.

"How else was I to escape?"

"Escape!? From what? To where?"

Now, Shino's hysterical. He's watching his best friend crumble right in front of him. 

"I can't take it anymore, Shino. I've tried so hard only to amount to nothing in the end."

"Who the hell said you amounted to nothing!? I'll kick their ass!"

Heath averts his eyes.

"Oh, Shino….you can't do that."

He faces him again. 

"Because it's all in my head…"

"Heath, I—", Shino starts. 

Heathcliff cuts him off. 

"I've only lived this long because of our promise. Remember that."

"You're so fucking selfish !"

"I know."

Shino stares at the blonde. Heath chuckles.

"I'm sorry."

It all happens in a flash.

Heathcliff cranes his neck to the side, puts a finger to his lips, and smiles one last time before the silver blur of the knife being driven into his throat can be seen. 

Like a box of rocks, he drops to the ground.

Shino drops to his knees and holds Heath in his arms, his red eyes redder from crying. Heath coughs up a small mouthful of blood.

"Why….? Why…!?", he shouts. "Why would you do this!?"

Heathcliff weakly reaches for Shino's face and pulls it close to his. He gives him a weak kiss, a small kiss, the best he could manage, leaving blood on the other boy's lips. 

Shino's eyes widen and he touches his lips before looking back down at the dying blonde in his arms. 

"Why…..?" he repeats

"I'm sorry."

Heath's eyes finally close as he lets out one last breath, and a scream of lamentation resonates throughout the manor.