.

.

There's being dead… and then, there's looking dead. He's used to it.

Everyone starts out looking dead—pale grey skin, colorless eyes, never feeling too warm or too cold. One of the constantly irritating things is the permanent sore-scabs on his lips, festering over Yuri's bottom one.

Viktor became alive soon after the GPF banquet, his fingers milky and soft when they clasped on Yuri's bare elbow. His eyes bluer and clearer than the Baltic sea. He gushes on about meeting the love of his life finally. If it's the drunken slob who embarrassed Yuri at the banquet… ha, good fucking luck with that.

He's not bitter, but mostly annoyed by how loud and vibrantly colorful they are. Viktor and Yuuri—the perfect couple in the skating world. Two men with that warm, rosy heat in their cheeks that makes anyone envious.

It's not bitterness that tinges inside Yuri's mouth—it feels like grief. Otabek's cheeks are brown. His eyes dark and radiantly bright, gazing solemnly on the younger.

Yuri hates himself—hates this dead, clammy skin.

He's not alive, not even a little, but Otabek's touch comes off as ice-cold, just like his.

When their fingers grip together, Yuri realizes he feels the chill, almost painfully, before it turns unbearably hot. He yanks his hand out of Otabek's handshake, letting out a shocked, low noise and cradling his arm.

The other boy appears as confused as Yuri, staring down at his own opened palm.

.

.

It takes another year, but Yuri watches his body change.

Not only through puberty, but he's getting warmer.

"You're not so gross anymore, malenkiy brat," Mila teases him, pinching Yuri's cheek.

He slaps her hand away, glaring. She's lost her grey skin and white eyes since the GPF banquet as well. Yuri suspects the Italian girl who keeps flirting with her. "You're always gross, baba," he complains tonelessly.

.

.

His mouth hurts.

It's bad enough where Yuri's fingernails peel underneath the blood-caked sores, ripping them off.

Fresh, pinkened skin reveals in the mirror, Yuri's lips glistening with sink water.

.

.

The next time Otabek visits him, it's their first kiss. Being seventeen doesn't seem like a triumph. Yuri doesn't make gold in the Worlds, not like he had in the Grand Prix Final against Viktor.

"Would you like to know what color your eyes are, Yura?" Otabek murmurs, stroking fingertips against Yuri's jawline. Yuri nuzzles closer into their hug, pressing up against him and tightening his arms to Otabek's waist. Their cable-knit scarves rumpling between them. He nods, savoring the increasing body-heat.

"Mm?"

"Zhasyl," Otabek's voice sounds faraway and rumbling. "When you wander underneath the trees."

Despite how his heart races, Yuri begins to smirk.

"That doesn't sound like any soldier's eyes, Beka. I think you got it wrong the first time."

There's a little stretch of silence, before Yuri asks uncertainly, "How come you…?" He furrows his eyebrows, ducking his head when Otabek looks at him with a curious semi-frown. "Whatever. Forget it."

"Yura…"

He grumbles wordlessly, Yuri's pale skin flushing red. "How come you looked… alive when I met you?" He mutters, shifting as if to pull out of Otabek's arms, "I mean, when we were in Barcelona…"

"It's not the first time I met you, remember?" Otabek reminds him, his frown softening away, trying to meet Yuri's gaze. The other man stiffens up, eyes going wide. "It's the first time we touched hands though."

"Then…?"

Yuri glances up, astonishment filling his expression. Otabek loved him… even back when they were kids? Had Otabek up and left Russia from Yakov's boot camp, with his skin and eyes darkening to color… knowing?

"Yes," comes a whisper, emitting a frosty cloud.

Otabek's mouth morphs to a smile as Yuri groans out a laugh, thumping his forehead to Otabek's jacket.

Soulmates?

He kinda hates this crap, but Yuri thinks he might get used to it.

.

.


Yuri on Ice isn't mine. LAST DAY OF YURI PLISETSKY WEEK IS HERE! I'm not big on soulmate tropes, or tropes in general, but I found a really cool concept to work with. I actually really liked how this turned out and I hope everyone reading enjoyed it too! Any thoughts/comments so appreciated!

"malenkiy brat" - "little brother" (Russian translation)

"Zhasyl" - "Green" (Kazakh transliteration)