Summary: The night is coming to a close and Touya wants his new friend to stay over. Awkward and funny moments will be had in this final chapter. Thank you for all of your support so far! It means a lot! R/R!
Disclaimer: You know the drill! Except this time, I also don't own the Yu-Gi-Oh TCG. You'll find out what I mean as you read.
I would like to thank the following reviewers:
caitlin/Ed: Look, it's DONE, DONE, DONE!:::lol::: Thanks for your support!
yaoihime: You're too good to me!:::glomps:::You support me through everything! Arigatou gozaimasu! I love you my kawaii imotou!
Shuuichi's Kindred Spirit: What else can I say, except AISHITERU my hikari! I didn't know about the 'no comma between names' rule! I'll remember that! Arigatou!
Inu Rin-chan: Arigatou Chii-chan! Yes, it would be nice if this was a reality!:::sighs and glomps back:::
After dinner, Touya and Yuki went back upstairs to Touya's bedroom. As soon as they entered his room, Touya turned to Yuki and asked, "Hey, Yuki... would you like to, uh... stay the night? It's getting late and I'd hate to have you walk home in the dark." He was surprised at how nervous he was asking such a simple question.
Yuki was stunned. Not only was this guy still considered a mere acquaintance, but staying the night at someone's house usually signifies an established friendship. He really didn't know how to respond, but standing there in silence was out of the question. Walking home at night wouldn't be a good idea and he got the feeling he could trust Touya and his family, so he saw no problem with staying over.
"Sure, Touya. I don't mind staying over. Is it really okay with your dad, though?"
"I'm sure he'll have no problem with it. He's already quite fond of you. More or less, he's just happy I'm finally bringing friends over." Touya chuckled. "Just wait here. I'll be right back."
Upon entering the kitchen, he spotted Fujitaka doing the dishes. "Hey, dad, I'd like to ask a favor of you."
"Oh, Touya-kun, good timing. If I remember correctly, it was your turn to do the dishes tonight." He pointed absently to the white board hanging on the wall that documented the family's daily agendas.
Touya sighed heavily as he stared in dismay at his name and chores written in black ink. "Dammit, I forgot! Okay, then I have two favors to ask of you, dad. I promise to do two extra nights of dish washing in return for letting me off the hook tonight and allowing Tsukishiro-kun to stay over. Is that okay with you?"
Fujitaka turned to his son and smiled warmly. "That sounds like a great deal to me. Be sure to write the days in which you will be washing dishes on the white board so we both don't forget. I think Sakura-san is doing it tomorrow, so you can take over during the weekend." He returned to his chores before continuing. "By the way, I'm happy you have found friendship with Tsukishiro-kun. It's been so long since I've seen you bring friends over. For awhile, I was worried about you. You used to sulk around the house every single day as if nothing mattered to you anymore. But..." he smirked, "... today... when I saw you walk through the front door with Tsukishiro-kun, smiling... you really don't know how relieved I was. As your father, I only want the best for you. I want you to live your life to the fullest with no regrets."
Taken aback, Touya merely stood frozen in place as he listened to his father's confession. "Dad, I-"
Snapping out of his thoughts, he turned to Touya and laughed halfheartedly. "Oh, I'm sorry for rambling. I got caught in a tangent. Anyway, Tsukishiro-kun can spend the night and I'll do the dishes this time. You can go now, Touya-kun."
Touya beamed. "Thanks, dad. I owe you big time." He turned to walk away, but was stopped by his father's voice.
"By the way, Touya-kun, when you get upstairs, could you thank Tsukishiro-kun for me?"
Touya looked puzzled. "For what?"
Fujitaka turned and smiled knowingly at his son. "You'll find out in time, son. Just know that I will always support you and love you no matter what. Now go have fun with your new friend and please keep the noise level down so your sister can sleep."
Touya's brows furrowed in confusion. It seemed like his father knew something important, but didn't want to let Touya in on it. Though he wanted to question his father further, he also didn't want to make Yukito wait any longer. He ran upstairs to announce the verdict.
As he opened the door, he saw Yuki waiting patiently on the floor in front of Touya's little table. Both exchanged a smile while Touya sat opposite to Yuki on the floor.
"So, what did he say?" Yuki inquired.
"Just as I expected, he agreed. Oh, and he also wanted me to give you his thanks."
Yuki cocked an eyebrow. "His thanks? Have I done anything to warrant his praise?"
Touya simply shrugged. "I have no idea. He was acting rather odd down there. When I asked him why he was thanking you, he said, 'You'll find out in time.' I thought it was really strange and I have no clue what he meant."
Yukito rubbed his chin curiously. "Hmm... that does sound quite strange, indeed. Then again, I don't really know your father, so my opinions wouldn't exactly be justifiable, right?" He smiled sheepishly.
Touya smiled back. "Your opinions are justifiable. My father was acting weird, after all. Anyway, let's change the subject. I don't want our first sleep over being spent talking about my dad." He laughed.
"That's true. So... what shall we do?"
"Hmm..." Touya glanced over at the clock which read 9:43PM, "... well, we don't have time to play any games that last a long time. In that case..." he got up and began looking through his collection of games. "Oh, hey, have you ever played the Yugioh trading card game? I haven't played in awhile, so I'm probably quite rusty." He took two decks out from one of his desk drawers.
Yuki tried to subdue laughter, but caved in eventually. Touya glared at his friend. "What's so funny?
Yuki spoke in between laughs. "You... you still play that game? That's... so..." He burst out laughing again.
Touya's face was red with embarrassment. "S-Shut up! I think it's a fun game! Dammit, stop laughing at me! If you didn't wanna play the game, you coulda just said so." He stomped over to his desk to put the cards back.
"No, Touya... ha ha... I didn't mean to hurt your feelings. I'm sorry." He wiped away the tears that remained after his laughing fit. "Honestly, I thought it was cute."
Now Touya's face was red for a new reason. He stopped dead in his tracks and turned to Yuki. "You... you think my liking the Yugioh tcg is... cute? Why?"
Realizing it was too late to take back what he said, Yuki scrambled for a reasonable response. "Oh... uh... well, the fact that... you like a kid's game is... cute to me..." In order to hide his beet red face, he hugged his knees and hid his face in them. What the hell am I saying?! Oh god, how embarrassing! I can only imagine how uncomfortable I made him feel. Stupid, stupid, stupid!
If an amplifier was attached to each of their chests, the beating of their hearts would be heard in the awkward silence that fell over the room. Touya was about to close the drawer containing the cards, but as he stared at them, he heard Yuki's voice in his head reminding him that his hobby of playing the game was cute. He looked back at his curled up friend and smiled affectionately. He took the cards back out and re-sat himself in front of Yukito.
The atmosphere was still awkward, so Touya wanted to break the ice. "Hey, Yuki...? Do you still wanna play?"
Yuki looked up from his hiding place within his knees and saw the sincere smile on Touya's face. The young boy's heart felt as light as a feather. He looked away, still ashamed for how he acted. "I'm sorry about what I said. I didn't mean to-"
"Thank you... for complimenting me." Yuki quickly looked over at Touya who had interrupted him unexpectedly. "It's been a long time since someone has given me a sincere compliment. I hear praise all the time from fellow students at school, but most of them are superficial. It's like they're saying such things to get on my good side. It's rather annoying. But you... you're different. You're honest and... I can't believe I'm saying this but... I have never heard anyone laugh so beautifully."
Yuki felt his whole body burn up, so he hid himself back in his knees. "I... I do not have a beautiful laugh. Why... would you say such a thing, Kinomoto-kun?"
Touya couldn't help but laugh through his nose and admit how adorably shy his friend was acting. "Yuki..." He reached across the table to pet Yukito's soft hair. Feeling Touya's hand on his head, Yuki looked at his friend curiously. "I said that because I meant it. You have a beautiful laugh. Don't be embarrassed about it. I'd like to see you laugh more in the future. Promise me you will, okay? And remember to call me 'Touya' from now on. You slipped up just now."
Such kindness. The gray haired teen boy had never experienced such a thing from someone he'd just met. It was overwhelming and he didn't know how to react. The emotions welling up inside frightened him. He was never taught how to express deep feelings, or what they might mean, even. As such, he didn't know what word best described how he was feeling at that moment. So he simply let it go and hoped he'd find an answer in the near future.
He smiled warmly and allowed himself to feel relaxed in Touya's touch. "I promise. In return, I'd like you to promise me never to give up your love of children's card games, okay?" He giggled playfully. "Oh, and sorry about slipping up. It'll take awhile for me to adjust to saying your first name." He smiled sheepishly.
Touya laughed as he removed his hand from Yuki's head. "You got it, man. Truth be told, I even have a collection of Pokemon cards. Don't you dare laugh!" He pointed with authority at Yuki.
Tsukishiro merely chuckled a little. "Seriously, after learning you love the Yugioh card game, how can I bring myself to make fun of another of your childlike hobbies? Plus it makes me happy to know that that side of your personality seems to flourish instead of fade. I don't really have any hobbies of my own."
Touya began shuffling each deck. "Well, then, I guess I'll have to invent a hobby for you, won't I? We'll start with the Yugioh tcg. Which deck would you like to see get beaten into submission?"
"Haha! You have that much confidence in your abilities, eh? You never know, though. I might just kick your ass in no time flat." Yuki winked.
Touya dismissed the claim easily. "Yeah right! You're a noob at this game, Yuki. You could never even dream of defeating me. I will take you down so fast, your head's gonna spin." Ego flaring, he picked the deck he felt would dominate the game more effectively and handed the other to Yuki.
Yuki, on the other hand, was staring at Touya breathlessly, a wide spread blush encompassing his features. He still wasn't accustomed to hearing such affectionate nickname. It wasn't a common place for guys to do so with their friends. So, why...? Yukito cleared his throat, then timidly asked, "Hey, Touya...?
"Hmm?" Touya looked at him, confused as to why his friend's demeanor changed so quickly.
"Um... w-why do you wanna call me 'Yuki'?" He tried hiding his face behind one of his pale hands.
Touya's breath hitched while his face turned a shade that matched perfectly with Yukito's. If he had to be honest with himself, he really had no clear cut answer as to why he wanted to give his new friend a nickname. He just... really wanted to. It felt right. "I... I guess it just sounds... nice?" He muttered under his breathe. He groaned as he pinched the bridge of his nose. What kind of lame ass excuse was that? "Look... I'm sorry if it makes you uncomfortable. We barely know each other, so I completely understand why me giving you a nickname freaks you out. I'll stop calling you that fro-"
"No!" Yuki's sudden outburst shocked both himself and Touya. The brunette's head jerked up to stare at his friend in disbelief. Embarrassed by his actions, Yuki averted his gaze and scratched the back of his head awkwardly. "I-I mean... it's okay if you call me that. I... um... don't mind at all." He let his face fall back into his knees with a groan. This was far more awkward than the moment they had prior. They both didn't like the tension, even though they still didn't know what caused it to begin with. Their thoughts were a quandary of confusion, happiness, and uneasiness.
Touya took a deep breathe and attempted to sort through his emotions. "Oh... okay." He was confused - that he knew for sure. He looked over at his friend who was huddled in an uncomfortable ball and spoke earnestly. "Hey, Yuki-" - just by hearing Touya's soft voice calling his name sent Yuki's heart racing a million miles an hour - "-please look at me."
With much resolve, Yuki did as he was told. He slowly made eye contact with the boy across from him until their gazes were locked.
'Ah... it's definitely there,' Touya closely observed as he stared into his friend's eyes. 'It's a bit different... but it's there, none-the-less. I don't know why or how this happened, but, surprisingly, I'm not freaking out about it. I feel comfortable and alive when I'm around him. That much I'm sure of. I barely know him, so I'll have to see how this friendship pans out. I want to learn all I can about him. Who knows? Maybe someday, he'll reveal to me why he's not human. But, until then, I will work hard to gain his trust. I really think I'm starting to...'
"Touya? Are you alright? You're... staring at me so intently." Yuki withdrew a bit from discomfort and uncertainty. He wished the butterflies in his stomach would take a break.
Coming out of his thoughts, Touya reassured Yukito, "Oh, I'm sorry, Yuki. I got kinda lost in my thoughts for a moment."
"No worries. Happens to me all the time." Yukito sat up straight and tried relaxing a bit.
"Shall we start our game or do you want to turn in for the night?" Touya looked over at the clock which read 10:23 PM.
Yuki did the same. "Oh, it's getting late, isn't it? We have school tomorrow, so we should get some rest. By the way, where am I supposed to sleep?"
Touya got up and headed for the hallway. "We have an extra fold-out mattress. I'll go get it."
After setting up for the night, Touya shut off the lights and got into bed. "Good night, Yuki. Sleep well."
Yuki snuggled under the covers and reciprocated, "Good night, Touya."
"By the way, Yuki...?"
"I wanna hear you say my name one more time before I fall asleep. Please?" Touya's voice was barely above a whisper as he prepared himself to have his wish granted.
Yuki blushed deep crimson as he clenched his blanket hard within his hands. "O-Okay, sure. Um... sweet dreams... Touya." He pulled the blanket all the way over his head to hide his embarrassment and, hopefully, muffle the sound of his heart pounding against his rib cage.
Touya's heart soared. He inhaled deeply with contentment, then fell asleep with a smile on his face. One thought crept out of his mind before heading to his dreams: I wonder what the future holds for us...