"Well, then spill it out!" Hide protested after a few minutes of silence. He was not the most patient young man in the world, Kaneki thought. "You said you needed to tell me something."
"Yeah" Kaneki muttered, looking away from his friend. It was hard coming to grips with his new reality, and worse even having to admit it out loud.
Kaneki was terrified; Hide would freak out and run away. Then he'd lose the person he cared the most, and he'd truly be alone. Horribly alone, half a monster, half a human, nothing in between.
"Is this about why you've been acting so weird lately?" "Yes" Another silence, still thick and almost palpable. Hide was worried, terribly so, but pretended he was just annoyed to soothe Kaneki's mind.
"Out with it, Kaneki!"
"That accident I was involved in. The one that landed me in the hospital. I--- Well, something happened to me in that surgery, the one that saved my life."
"The organs that were transplanted into me were---well, they were tainted."
It was Hide's time to be silent then, staring at his best friend with a frown. He wanted to comfort him, somehow, but he couldn't find the right words for once in his life.
"The organs belonged to a Ghoul" Kaneki continued talking, forcing himself to speak. Slowly, he removed the patch that covered his eye. The eye that turned red when he was angry or hungry or...
well, when he was experiencing intense feelings. And Kaneki was terrified to lose his best friend.
Hide opened his eyes wide, and his jaw hung as he noticed the unmistakable red hue in Kaneki's gaze. He gulped silently, feeling his hands tremble.
"I'm never going to hurt you, Hide..." Kaneki muttered but still took a step back, feeling he was about to be told to leave and never speak to Hide again.
Instead, the blonde teenager moved forward, wrapping his arms around Kaneki and hugging him tightly, tousling his friend's hair playfully.
"And do you think I'll let you abandon me just because you are...well, whatever you are now? Nah, I'll get too bored if I have to be all alone in class!"
Kaneki hugged Hide back tightly, discovering he was sobbing from relief in his friend's arms. They remained there, relieved this horrible secret was finally out in the open.
Hide was scared and Kaneki was worried, but at least now they knew where they stood, and they also knew, at last, that neither of them was going to walk out on the other.
Hide would always be by his best friend's side, through thick and thin, even if he risked getting eaten alive. He'd do anything for Kaneki.