reason ii: meeting someone new

Light from the setting sun streamed through the open windows leading into the small balcony. Soon, night will fall and the hustle and bustle of Yokohama will gradually settle down.

Dazai, busy cleaning and unpacking all day long, let out a puff of air.

Aside from the three boxes and the bag he had brought from this morning, he had placed a few moving boxes into his new apartment some days ago. The only things the moving company will deliver tomorrow were the dishes and utensils, almost all of his books, and furniture he was too fond to leave behind.

Paying heed to his rumbling stomach, he quickly called for take-out and busied himself with setting up the chabudai which was graciously left by the previous occupant.

Once he had finished his dinner and threw away the trash, Dazai snuggled into his futon, one of his favorite books in hand and an opened bottle of wine and a wine glass filled halfway nearby.

He was so absorbed by what he was reading that he didn't notice the wine slowly draining from the wineglass. When he absentmindedly reached for it, Dazai was surprised by the light weight.

"What the- I could've sworn this was half-full... huh, interesting."

Dazai shrugged when he felt the hairs on his nape stand up... someone was watching him. Calmly setting aside his book, he pretended to stretch and yawn. As his eyes narrowed into thin slits, he glanced around-

-and saw a blurry silhouette hovering a few feet above and away from him.

Forcing himself to relax and restraining his natural instinct to jump up, Dazai closed his eyes.

Still feeling curious eyes on him ('hmm, no hint of malicious intent'), the ravenette leisurely opened his mouth.

"You know, I would have gotten another wineglass for you."

A startled intake of breath then-

"... you can see me?"

Dazai, caught off guard by that husky voice and prompting his eyes to open, frowned when he processed the timidly spoken (achingly tinged with hope) sentence.

"Yes? Of course I can see you, you're floating in mid-air!"

Dazai had the impression that the figure hesitated before drifting closer, his once obscure image shaping into sharp angles and stark hues. He blinked. Once. Twice. Then stared.

"... what."

The figure turned out to be a man who looked the same age as Dazai - unruly fiery hair draped over petite shoulders and a pair of piercing gray eyes studying him.

The features that intrigued Dazai the most were the curled horns at the side of the man's head and the crimson and ebony markings scattered all throughout the other man's body with the most concentrated at his hands.

"Oi, did you get brain damage or what?"

Caught ogling, Dazai coughed and scratched the back of his head. "Ah, sorry, it's not everyday I get to meet a, uh, demon, I presume?"

The creature-man-demon- whatever (?) snorted, lips twitching, then crossed his arms.

"Well, fuck, you got that in one go. What gave it away? The horns? The markings?"

A show of sharp canines.

Dazai bluntly answered, "Stupid, you were floating."

The other man jolted then scowled. "That's because I thought you can't see me, dumbass! And who's the stupid one that ignored the delicious wine, huh?!"

The ravenette suddenly grinned, pointing at the redhead. "Aha! I knew it! So you were the culprit!"

"Wha- I thought you were sure it was me!"

"Eh, not really, but thanks for the confirmation!" A cheeky grin.

Mad twitches of the eyebrows were the answer. "Teme-"

Muttering a quiet 'uh oh', Dazai smoothly stated, "I haven't introduced myself - my name is Dazai. Dazai Osamu. May I inquire what yours is?"

Dark brown expectantly gazed at gray.

Too low mumbles.

"... Could you repeat that, please? And maybe a bit louder?"

Silence. Then-

"I don't have one."