1. The bells Kantarou wears on his wrist are the only thing his mother ever gave to him. Though Kantarou claims he despises his family, Haruka knows it's just his way of coping.
However, despite what Kantarou believes, the bells are not actually enchanted; for anyone else, they are just normal bells. But because Kantarou is the one who wears them, they are tuned in to his huge well of power. They ring when oni are around because Kantarou can sense them.
Haruka does not know if Kantarou knows this and decides not to tell him. Despite the cocky attitude Kantarou puts on, Haruka knows he does not have even half the self-confidence he displays. It isn't important, and anyway, Kantarou probably wouldn't believe him.
2. Haruka does not know how Kantarou got his chest wound until he sees it for the first time himself. He nonchalantly asks Youko about it the next day, and sighing, she tells him about one of Kantarou's Mission-To-Find-Onigui-Tengu gone wrong.
"Kan-chan has been more selective about the offers he takes now since he met you," Youko finishes, still mildly annoyed at her master's carelessness, but her eyes twinkle and a small smile graces her lips, thankful to Haruka. He snorts, incredulous because he has yet to see Kantarou turn down a job.
At first, it bothers him that another has marred something that is his and only his, but then changes his mind and decides it's just another claim of his possession over Kantarou. After all, the other man would not have it if it was not for him.
Recently, he has taken to tracing the scar when they make love, possessively whispering to him, "Mine." Kantarou does not argue, his mind too saturated with lust to do anything more than gasp and moan. In the morning, Kantarou smiles as he sits down and calmly sips his tea while Youko rambles on about money, grumpy at loosing another good night's sleep. He looks softly at the black-haired man, and Haruka can't help but think that he agrees.
3. Kantarou does not like Sakura because of the old stories of dead bodies buried beneath them. Ironically, however, he loves going to the cherry blossom festival every year.
The first year Haruka is with him, he whines so hard that Haruka agrees just to shut up him. That is the only time Haruka sees his master drunk because Kantarou is a cheating little sneak when it comes to drinking contests. It is also the first time Kantarou kisses him.
4. As pathetic as it sounds, Kantarou is the extremely jealous type whose biggest rival in life is not Hasumi, but sadly, Haruka's rice bowl. Though he does not say it, Haruka sees Kantarou glaring at it every once in a while, and can only imagine the heinous thoughts running through the other man's head.
Eventually, Haruka tires of it and chastises Kantarou who then mopes around with a kicked puppy look for days. After a week, Youko confronts him, annoyed, and demands he apologize. Haruka then tries to explain the importance of his rice bowl to her; Youko will have none of it and returns to her chores, but not before giving him one last glare.
Haruka thinks about what Youko said and decides to compromise with himself in the end. After all, even though his rice bowl is his rice bowl, Kantarou is his lover, and his rice bowl will always be with him, though Kantarou will not. So, he decides that focusing more attention on his lover and less on his rice bowl is due, though he still carries it around with him, but only takes it out when eating. Haruka also notices Kantarou no longer seems to be plotting the untimely demise of his precious rice bowl.
5. In his attic, there is an old dusty bin filled with marbles from the ramune bottles. Kantarou no longer collects them because they no longer interest him, but every once in a while he takes them out again.
Haruka likes the bottles more than the marbles, though truthfully, the only part of ramune he likes is the bottle. Sometimes he wonders why Kantarou is so fascinated with ramune because the drink is utterly repulsive in his opinion. Kantarou doesn't seem to care much for sweet things either, so Haruka can't help but wonder and makes a mental note to ask Kantarou about it sometime.
6. It still completely mystifies Haruka why Kantarou does not consider himself attractive. Granted, his piercing red eyes and silver hair are not traditional, but that does not equate to unattractive.
Unfortunately, Haruka is also the jealous type and often has to chase away with his glares Kantarou's little following of spirits, youkai, and blushing girls, which, not so surprisingly to him, isn't much smaller than his own. Still, Kantarou does not notice, and exasperatedly whines about Haruka's fangirls. Haruka does not really mind that he doesn't know though because Kantarou is his and he isn't willing to share with anyone.
7. When he has new clients, Kantarou usually introduces himself with the title of folklorist or spiritualist, depending on what type of help they're seeking and how much he wants to impress them. However, he always claims the other as his side-job, non-committal to which one he really does for a living.
Haruka asks him about it one day, and Kantarou smiles lightly and tells him, "My full-time job is to make memories with Haruka." Haruka lets his expression soften and decides that's the best occupation Kantarou can have, even if it doesn't put food on the table.
8. Haruka finally notices the first month after he returns that Kantarou has a fascination with his wings. He is unwilling to let Kantarou touch them at first, afraid the other man will mess them up. After all, tengu are vain creatures, and Haruka is certainly no exception. Not to mention that he would never hear the end of it if Sugino found out.
However, he soon succumbs to Kantarou's begging. Kantarou's touch is soft and gentle as his finger rift through his feathers, and Haruka finds himself calm as Kantarou leans on him, brushing lightly against his black wings.
Remembering the words Kantarou had helped Edwards preach, Haruka asks softly why he prefers Haruka's tainted, pitch-black wings—why he doesn't like Sugino's pure white ones more. Kantarou smiles and whispers to Haruka that he doesn't want to be saved.
9. On the tenth day he comes back, Youko leaves the house for groceries, and Kantarou breaks down and tells him everything that happened from the time he left to the time he came back. Haruka does not know what to say as Kantarou's sentences start running into each other, his words turning to strings of incoherent mumbling as Haruka holds him close, waiting for him to let out all he'd been holding in the past few months. The other man eventually quiets down, silently pressing against him.
"I love you," Kantarou tells him quietly, his voice strained from all the tears he shed earlier. Haruka tenses, not knowing what to say because he is not good with words. But Kantarou pulls back a little, red eyes looking up at him scared but hopeful, and Haruka leans down to press his lips against Kantarou's.
In the morning, Haruka wakes up to a pair of bright eyes, no longer sad and worried, and he lets himself grace the other with smile. "I love you," the voice tells him again, and though Haruka still can't say the words, neither of them really care. Kantarou knows the power of words, but it no longer matters because more importantly, he knows that Haruka loves him.
10. Kantarou does not really like ramune because, though he seems childish at times, it is something he outgrew a long time ago. Still, he enjoys taking Haruka out to buy the soft drink, though whether it is out of sadistic pleasure or he just likes drinking ramune with Haruka, the dark-haired man is still not sure. Regardless, Haruka humors him and goes along, mostly because he takes amusement from the antics of a sugar-high Kantarou.
"Ne, ne!" Kantarou nags and tugs on Haruka's sleeve, his voice high and giddy from all the caffeine. "Have some ramune, Haruka~!"
"I think I will," Haruka smirks and leans down for a kiss. Kantarou squeaks indignantly, but does not protest. Though he has a certain distaste for the drink, Haruka decides he rather likes the taste of ramune on Kantarou's lips.
11. Though he is no where near as strong as Haruka, Kantarou seems insistent on jumping in front of Haruka to protect him when something goes wrong on his jobs. This frustrates Haruka to no end because unlike him, Kantarou is human, and his wounds heal a lot slower than Haruka's.
"Why do you always do this?" Haruka mumbles, gently wrapping a bandage around Kantarou's arm after Youko refuses to, annoyed due to her master's endless display of stupidity.
Kantarou sighs and doesn't say anything for a moment, but then looks up at Haruka with his piercing eyes, and without a hint of doubt, he tells Haruka, "More than anything else, I want to protect you."
Haruka realizes Kantarou is a lot stronger than he has given him credit for.
12. Sometime between then and now, Kantarou decides that a random hour of every day must be "together time" with Haruka. Haruka finds this notion completely absurd because it wasn't as if he didn't spend the other twenty-seven out of twenty-three hours of the day with his master, and they do nothing special anyway.
Kantarou hates it when anyone interrupts this "together time," even Youko to bring them food or Reiko to nag Kantarou about his manuscript. Eventually, all of them learn that Kantarou will refuse to do any work for the rest of the day if anything comes between him and his Haruka-time. Haruka plays along even though it drives him crazy because he wants there to be food on the table for dinner.
13. Kantarou does not like Sugino's village because of the mountain god, but mainly because of the bad memories he has of it. Still, either out of pure masochist or strange devotion, he returns every year to check that the seal he put on the dragon god will not crack.
One thing Kantarou does like about the village, though, are its hot springs. Haruka reluctantly agrees to go with Kantarou after he promises not to jump on Haruka this time, though Haruka does not believe him one bit. Kantarou keeps his promise.
He tells Haruka, his voice small and meek, about how it was like for him to grow up there, about how no one would play with him, how the bullies always picked on him, how the everyone was scared of his red eyes, and how glad he was to finally leave. Haruka listens, and realizes he doesn't like this side of Kantarou.
Pinning Kantarou against one of the rocks, he decides to help him make one good memory of the village, and makes love to him in the hot spring.
14. Because he does not like the memories of his childhood, Kantarou takes every chance there is to make memories with Haruka. This drives him crazy, of course, because there's only so much anyone can take of Kantarou at once, and Haruka is the one who has to put up with him all the time.
He also likes informing Haruka what his new favorite memory is about once a month, usually something they did a week earlier. Haruka just rolls his eyes at Kantarou's indecisiveness because every memory Kantarou has with Haruka seems to be his favorite. Still, he listens quietly to his master's animated chattering.
Eventually, he asks what Kantarou's favorite favorite memory is, finally understanding that he likes them all, and Kantarou just smiles at him and says, "The one where you came back to me."
15. Despite all his expertise in the subject, every once in a while, Kantarou makes little blunders when he performs exorcisms, though it might just be his luck.
Once, he falls down a flight of stairs and injures his leg, and Haruka ends up carrying him around for a week. Girls stare at them returning home from town, giggling and green with envy. Even Youko does not miss a chance to tease them.
The word spreads, and Sugino comes around a few days later after hearing tell and whines to Haruka about how the mighty ogre-eater has become the slave of a human. Haruka ignores him for the most part because he doesn't really care what Sugino thinks.
He's also found that Kantarou's small body fits neatly against him, and despite his master's protests, decides to carry him around for a few more days after his leg heals.
16. Other than ramune and Youko's pastries, Kantarou does not often eat sweet things. He does, however, rather like strawberry candy. He buys them once in a while when he has a craving or when he stumbles upon some in town. Kantarou offers them to him when he has them, but Haruka never takes him up on the offer, knowing his master's taste in sweets.
"They're good, Haruka!" Kantarou explains, holding out a piece for him to take. "They're kind of sweet, but not rot-your-teeth-out-sweet, like most candies. Kind of like you!" he ends excitedly.
Haruka rolls his eyes and leans down to kiss his lover. The taste of the candy is strong on Kantarou's lips, and despite his explanation, it was still too sweet for Haruka's taste. He doesn't mind though, and continues to kiss Kantarou breathless.
17. On warm summer evenings, Haruka likes sitting on the roof of their house to watch the moon. Noticing this pattern of behavior, Kantarou often plans their "together time" in the summer accordingly. Sometimes, particularly after a paycheck, he will bring a bottle of sake for them to share, and Haruka doesn't complain even though it's seldom very good.
After a few cups between them, Kantarou is thoroughly drunk, giggling, and pressing seductively against Haruka. Haruka has the vague notion that Kantarou is a bit of an exhibitionist, but Kantarou's red lips are tempting, and Haruka leans down and kisses him anyway. It's really too bad neither of them are romantics because they never notice how poetic the faded moon in the sky is.
18. Some nights, Haruka wakes up to the sound of Kantarou sobbing in his sleep, terrorized by nightmares. Haruka does not wake him from the dream, nor does he ask his lover about them in the morning. They are something Kantarou deals with by himself because he is afraid they make him weak.
Kantarou only tells him about one of his nightmares, the night he wakes up shivering and crying, pressed close against Haruka's chest. His body is ice cold like death, and Haruka holds him close, trying to help him regain the warmth he doesn't have.
"I-I," Kantarou chokes out, unsure of what to say, and Haruka waits patiently though he knows that Kantarou had dreamt about dying. Kantarou's red eyes look into his, tears still falling from them, and his trembling voice tells him instead, "I dreamt I never met you."
19. Kantarou likes spring of the sakura festival, but he especially likes it because of the butterflies. The swirls of color and intricate patterns fascinate him, and though he catches them sometimes, he always releases them back to where they belong.
Haruka thinks that Kantarou is like a butterfly sometimes, with his captivating beauty and delicate air of freedom. Then, in the back of his mind, he remembers a priestess whose name he's already forgotten that loved butterflies and was like a butterfly. He changes his mind, thinking that it may be for the better that Kantarou is not like one. After all, butterflies are fragile creatures with short lived beauty, and Haruka finds Kantarou's enduring strength more beautiful than anything a butterfly offers.
20. Haruka knows many things about Kantarou; he knows the grooves of his body, what makes him gasp and moan, where he is ticklish, and other things outside of the bedroom. He knows some of Kantarou's past, what he is doing now, and what his dreams and aspirations for the future are.
And though Haruka is the person who knows Kantarou the best, there are still many things he does not know about his master. He stays with Kantarou because he does not stop wanting to know absolutely everything there is to know about him.
More than anything else, Haruka knows the most important thing about Kantarou: he is Kantarou's most important person. And that, he knows, is the only thing that really matters.