A/N: I'm really not sure about Koteshi's name, but when
gingaktb first requested this fic, she referred to him as
Koteshi, which I seem to recall as being what Tsunade called him
in the scanslations I've been reading. But when I looked him up
online, I got Kotetsu. ^_^;; I basically did the mental
equivalent of flipping a coin and decided to call him Koteshi,
if only because the fic was written for the pleasure of
gingaktb, who called him that in her original request. Whatever
his name actually is, I assume it's just a difference of or
mistake in translation- like the Genma/Gemma thing.
And for those who don't know (because really, these two are not
high-profile guys), Izumo and Koteshi are the examiners who pull
that unofficial first test before the chuunin exam and find
Sakura-chan after Sasuke knocks her out. They always seem to
show up together and are usually standing right on the edge of
each other's personal space. X3 I had to fudge a bit on their
personalities and backstories, though, since they've only shown
up a couple of times so far. Some of it I based off what they
seemed like from their dress and posture, but a lot I just
pulled out of my ass. *guilty grin* Most likely, they'll never
become detailed enough for this to matter anyway.
. . . yeah. Like any of you read all that. Anyway, SHOUNEN AI.
That should catch your attention, ne? ^_^
"Reasons Not To Go To Sleep"
Koteshi's hair is even more of a mess than usual and he is
sprawled over his bed like a gangly starfish. Izumo is watching
him from the kitchenette through his own hair, already on the
morning's third cup of coffee. He needs to get off the stuff,
but sometimes he feels like he can't keep up with Koteshi
without it. Even right now, he's very tired. He didn't sleep a
wink all night.
The thing about Koteshi is that he can sleep anywhere and
anywhen. His bed, Izumo's bed, the floor, the kitchen table-
he's fine where and whenever. The thing about Izumo is that
he's an insomniac. He can't sleep no matter what he does. He
can get home from a six-week mission, give a three-hour report,
and spend the rest of the day running after Koteshi, and he
still won't be able to drift off after. It's extremely
irritating, but he simply can't get his mind to shut up for long
The only time that Izumo ever remembers falling asleep easily is
the first night he slept in the same room as Koteshi. He was
absolutely content for the first time in his life and simply
curled into the bed and felt totally okay. Before he knew what
was happening, he was out.
Koteshi told him the next morning, teasingly, that he looked
kinda cute while he slept.
Izumo was never able to sleep again.
He knows it's stupid, but he cannot regain that sense of peace
and safety any longer. He can't let himself relax because he's
afraid of what will happen to Koteshi. That he will disappear,
or just go away.
That's why they're always together. That's why Izumo never
Because he's scared that Koteshi will die or get lost or be
stolen or just finally recognize him for the clingy, needy
bastard that he is and leave him. Because he's scared that
he'll have to go back to his old life again.
The problem with Izumo's old life is that he doesn't remember
anything about it. Oh, he knows, on a practical level, that he
must have had some kind of parental figures or at least a
guardian at some point, but he doesn't recall them at all beyond
a vague impression. He isn't sure what happened to him- whether
he was hit on the head or with some repression jutsu, or whether
he's the one doing the repressing himself. He's never asked
anyone about it or even looked at his own files, though he's had
more than enough opportunity to do both.
Izumo has this funny feeling that whatever he's forgotten
doesn't really want to be remembered.
He leaves it alone, just in case he's right.
Koteshi wakes up slowly. The first thing he sees is, as usual,
Izumo in the kitchenette, doing paperwork on the counter and
drinking coffee. He doesn't feel anything upon noticing this
Koteshi likes to be with Izumo. He gets the feeling that if
they ever WERE separated, they'd spend the whole time looking
for each other anyway. And he kind of likes always having
someone around to bail him out or bounce ideas off of. He can't
even remember the last time they were more than a few meters
apart. Even when one of them is in the bathroom or the shower,
the other tends to gravitate towards that room.
Their apartment is a loft, so as far as "rooms" go, there is
only the first floor, where they keep the kitchen and the living
area and the second, where they both sleep. Then there's a
closet upstairs and a bathroom downstairs, and that's really
everything. You can see every area from almost every angle, and
they are constantly in each other's line of sight, which is the
unspoken reason as to why they chose this apartment in the first
place. The only time they CAN'T both see each other is when one
of them is in the bathroom.
When Izumo takes his showers, Koteshi usually ends up pressed
against the door, waiting for him. Izumo is subtler, but he
still has a habit of doing his paperwork in the closest chair
whenever Koteshi is taking his.
This wouldn't necessarily mean anything to most people, but
Koteshi knows that Izumo has never liked that chair. It's
squishy and overstuffed and covered in cushions. Koteshi likes
to sink into it bonelessly, like jelly into a jar, but Izumo can
never get comfortable in it. He prefers straight-backed chairs
with wicker seats.
They're always quick in the bathroom. It's kind of a rule.
Izumo broke it once, and when Koteshi couldn't have waited
another second without going insane, he barged in and caught him
in a rather compromising position.
After that, the bathroom door just stayed open all the time and
they stopped dealing with their hormones. It was easier to just
suppress it. Izumo, probably, can deal with it at night if he
really needs to, but Koteshi can't remember the last time Izumo
fell asleep before him.
Actually, he can't even remember the last time he saw Izumo
asleep. Once, maybe, when they were still genin- or maybe back
in the academy.
For some reason, he has this image of the current Izumo in
repose in his head, but it's nothing he's ever seen. He likes
to think about it, though. Izumo always seems a little tired.
It would be nice to see him sleeping a little more.
Izumo seems to have finished the form he was filling out.
Koteshi takes this as a sign to get out of bed.
"'zumo," Koteshi calls drowsily from upstairs. "You're up
"Yes," Izumo answers unnecessarily. He is the sort of person
who does things like that. Koteshi's used to it.
"Idiot," Koteshi mutters. "You don't sleep enough." Izumo
doesn't say anything. Koteshi's a little too good at figuring
out when he's lying. It's easier to stay quiet.
Of course, Koteshi knows that he knows this.
"Izumo, when did you go to bed last night?" he asks with a
Izumo's silence is, as always, answer enough.
Koteshi grimaces and jumps off the loft, completely forgoing the
stairs. He lands on the kitchen table, sending all of Izumo's
papers flying and knocking Izumo himself neatly off his chair.
Izumo still doesn't say anything. Someone else might be angry,
but he can never be angry with Koteshi. You can't live with a
person for the entire duration of your remembered life and get
upset with them so easily.
Well, actually you can, but Izumo has always been too worried
that Koteshi would leave if he ever did such a thing. If you
spend so much time with someone and care so much for them,
losing them is something you would do anything to avoid.
Keeping his temper was hardly a challenge considering the
"You're so stupid," Koteshi grumbles. Izumo only get to his
feet, shrugging listlessly.
Koteshi grabs him by the arm and drags him back upstairs,
grumbling all the way. Izumo follows, because why wouldn't he?
Koteshi pushes him down on his own bed and gives him a look that
very clearly says, "stay." Then he returns to the kitchen and
scribbles something on a piece of scrap paper, throwing it and
all of Izumo's forms in a manilla envelope and tying it off
neatly. He goes to the window and yanks it open, leaning much-
too-far out of it and scanning the street below.
"Oi, kid!" he yells, waving at a vaguely familiar and unoccupied-
looking genin. "Drop this off at the Hokage's office. Tell 'em
it's Izumo's work." Then he drops the envelope right on his
poor victim's head and flashes her a grin before vanishing
As Inner Sakura curses up a storm in the street, Koteshi returns
to the top floor and his bed, giving Izumo a dubious look.
"You didn't have to call in sick for us," Izumo says with a
sigh. Koteshi rolls his eyes.
"You," he says firmly, "are going to sleep." Izumo gives him a
blank look. He's kidding, right? Except he knows Koteshi too
well to think that.
"I'm not tired," he lies, and Koteshi sees through it
"I am going to make you sleep for at least once in your life if
I have to hold you down!" Koteshi declares stubbornly.
Izumo just sighs and gets back to his feet. "Koteshi, knock it
off. We have to get to work or we'll be-"
"Koteshi . . . ?" Izumo asks blankly, staring up at the ceiling
in confusion. When did he end up on his back?
"You are going to sleep," Koteshi repeats calmly, pressing his
body down on Izumo's a little more firmly. "I'm not moving
until you do." Izumo blinks up at the ceiling, not speaking.
He already knows that he isn't going to be able to sleep, but
it's not at all for the same reasons as usual.
Warm . . .
* ende *
. : insomnia's a bitch : .