Four-seasoned clover

x

Warnings/notes : Otogi/Honda, small hints at Seto/Joey and Yugi/Anzu, slightly weird/silly.

Disclaimer : I don't own Yu-Gi-Oh.

written at 19th october 2004, by Misura. This drabble was written in reply to the First Line Meme of cairnsy, which means the first line of this drabble comes from a fic of hers.

"For some reason it felt appropriate that Ryuuji was returning to Domino as autumn slowly begun to swallow summer." (I slightly reworded it, sorry.)

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For some reason, it felt appropriate that Otogi had returned to Domino as autumn had slowly begun to swallow summer, as the warmth was starting to seep out of the days, and wind and rain were doing their best to let people know the winter was coming.

He met Honda about two blocks away from his apartment, by some cruel dictate of fate. Otogi would truly have preferred not to have anyone see him in his current state, his hair tousled, his clothing rumpled from sleeping in them on the plane, his shoulders slumped under the weight of his bags ...

Initially, neither of them spoke. They just stood there, surrounded by dancing leaves.

"I didn't know that you were back," Honda said finally, his voice so neutral that Otogi might have suspected him of hiding something, had he not been too exhausted from his flight.

"Just this morning," Otogi replied, before his habitual manners kicked back in. "I mean, I returned just this morning. That's why I carry these." He lifted the bags a few millimeters.

"Oh." Honda frowned, appearing to think for a while. "Will you be staying long?"

Otogi shrugged. It made the bags swing back and forth a little, endangering his balance. "Probably, yes. I need to work on the new edition of Dungeon Dice Monsters."

Honda nodded.

"I'd better get going now, before it starts raining," Otogi added.

Honda nodded again, and offered to carry his bags for him.

Otogi surprised himself by accepting.

x

Autumn seemed to pass both too slowly and too fast, with long days that never ended spent behind his computer, and months vanishing from his calendar without Otogi making any revolutionary changes to the 'old' version of Dungeon Dice Monsters.

He only noticed that it had become winter when he was hit by a snowball on one of his weekly excursions to the supermarket for groceries. Hearing a familiar laugh coming from behind him, Otogi turned to find Joey standing there, waving happily.

If Honda hadn't stood there as well, Otogi might have shrugged the incident off as Joey still not having grown up and acting childish, but Honda -was-, brandishing another fresh snowball.

Deciding that twenty-something wasn't -that- old, Otogi opted for revenge, hoping that his luck would even out the unfair odds of two against one.

In the end though, Lady Fortune didn't need to intervene, since Mokuba popped up as well, teaming up with Joey while Otogi gained Honda as an ally. The division puzzled Otogi a little, and he inquired about it later, sipping hot chocolate made by Honda.

Honda laughed a little uncomfortably and mumbled something about Kaiba and Joey having spent time together recently. The topic apparently wasn't to Honda's liking, so Otogi diplomatically asked about Yugi next, making a mental note that he needed to get out more and find out the truth about Joey and Kaiba.

Yugi, apparently, had hooked up with Anzu. Honda offered to show him the pictures of their wedding, and Otogi sighed while Honda did so, not even having awaited his reply. He'd never been very interested in other people's good luck, especially not when he himself had had so little recently.

x

Spring arrived with lots of rain, causing Otogi to cut down the times he ventured outside of his apartment drastically. He stubbornly refused to lug about an umbrella or, worse, a raincoat to keep him dry, since they didn't fit in with his sense of style and fashion.

The sound of water ticking on the roof, and the sight of it trickling down his window, did little for his inspiration. By the end of April, he found himself only half done with the work he'd hoped to have finished two months ago.

Nobody had tricked him on April Fools, and he'd only received about a dozen Valentine-cards.

Otogi decided he had good reason to feel more than a little neglected and forgotten. He toyed with the idea of calling Kaiba for aid, cashing in on some favor Kaiba surely still owed him.

He decided against it in the end, telling himself that Kaiba might be an expert on Duel Monsters, but knew next to nothing about Otogi's creation and thus would hardly be able to be of any assistance.

Honda brought him a surprise-visit later that week.

For some reason, their conversation bordered on being awkward, stranding more often than Otogi had thought possible, on the silliest of subjects. He did gain the information that Kaiba and Joey had broken up, which logically indicated they'd really been a couple for a while, and that Honda was pleased about that.

Joey wasn't. Predictably.

More out of curiosity than because he'd changed his mind about wanting Kaiba's help, Otogi called Kaiba Corp.'s main-office after Honda had left. A nervous secretary told him Mr. Kaiba was not available at the moment; might she take a message to be delivered to Mr. Nibanme, who was dealing with the most pressing matters right now?

Otogi thanked her politely and hung up.

x

"I don't understand why Joey went back to that bastard," Honda complained, lying in the soft summer-grass of the park, staring up at the blue sky.

"Maybe it's true love between them," Otogi suggested, more to fill the silence than because he believed it.

"They fight and argue all the time," Honda pointed out. "That doesn't sound much like romance to me."

"Romance only exists in books and movies," Otogi answered. "In real life, love can be as much of a burden as fame or fortune."

"You'd know about that," Honda snorted.

Otogi remained silent.

"Still ... " Honda mused aloud, "I think I kind of like you."

Otogi thought about replying with something frivolous and teasing, like 'Doesn't everyone?', or something self-assured, like 'I think it's more than 'kind of liking' '.

Instead, because it was a hazy, lazy afternoon he chose something simple.

"I think I kind of like you too."

OWARI