A/N: Okay, this is the final installment of this fic, my dears! Thanks so much for all your support, I hope it's a suitable ending. Also, I seem to have some sort of fetish with embarassing underpants, so just bear with me.
I didn't base this one on a particular lyric, so here's one from the same song that fits well enough, just to keep with it.
"Trusting things beyond mistake.
We were in love. We were in love."
Also, there's a Panic! At the Disco quote in here that was halfway accidental. Just so you know.
You could never tell from the cramped disarray of the main room, but Merlin's house was actually very roomy. If you could manage to find the door to the right corridor, you'd end up in a labyrinth of tall doors and wide hallways, libraries and sitting rooms and even a ballroom. The only slight problem was a shortage of bedrooms, but that could usually be solved easily. In one of these bedrooms lay Sora, head pounding and stomach growling, alone in bed because Riku had insisted that he stay there while he made breakfast because "that's what you do for someone you love. You take care of them." It was proving difficult, however, for Sora to resist following the boy, and great deal of shatters and crashes from the kitchen later, Sora drug himself out of bed and made his quiet way into the kitchen.
He was met with the sight of Riku's svelte hindquarters thrust up in the air (though he was now clothed in a pair of pants and an undershirt, which Sora thought was a terrible shame) as he dug deep into the annals of a cavernous cabinet below the stove, clattering around and presumably searching for another pan. The counter next to the stove was strewn with eggshells, dry pancake mix, and measuring cups. There was a bowl of pancake batter and a wooden spoon situated next to a half-full bottle of vegetable oil that lay on its side, its contents spilled out over the polished surface and dripping down to the stone floor. A few pots and pans were scattered about the countertop and floor, and various cooking utensils were overflowing out of a number of open drawers, a few dangling haphazardly like ornaments. Pancake batter was splattered all over the floor by the stove where a skillet sat with raw pancakes bubbling away inside it, and tiny dollops of the substance that hadn't quite made it to the pan were emitting little streams of steam as they died a slow death.
"Aha!" came Riku's voice, triumphant and echoing off of the pots and pans. One of his hands emerged, placed a spatula next to the stove. There was a series of loud banging and clanging about as he tried to cram everything back into the cabinet, and on his third try he had managed to shut the doors.
"Quite the domestic goddess, aren't you?" Sora commented fondly. Riku spotted him finally and shook his head with one of the first sheepish smiles Sora had ever seen grace those smug lips. As if on cue, the cabinet doors burst open and heavy metal bowls, lids, dishes, pots, pans, and cauldrons came spewing and crashing out all over the floor and, more importantly, Riku's bare feet. A yell and a curse later, he was hopping around on one foot and angrily struggling to force everything back once more. Sora moved forward to help, but Riku waved him away, part out of pride and part out of concern for the younger boy's well-being. So he watched, rather entertained, as Riku finally slammed the doors shut, stripped off his belt (soliciting an "Oh my…" from Sora), and fastened it securely around the door handles.
He straightened up once more, sweeping the silver hair out of his eyes and adjusting himself in a smooth maneuver that inexplicably made Sora want to jump him right then and there.
"You okay, Riku?"
He looked desperate. "I made coffee," he offered, pointing helpfully to the steadily dripping (or was it leaking?) coffeemaker.
Sora scrunched up his nose. "I hate coffee. With a deep, fiery passion."
Riku looked at him in what he hoped was a threatening way, choosing to ignore the way Sora's nose twitched when he sniffed the brew with distaste and how adorable it may have been. "Ohhh, no. It took me twenty minutes to figure out how to operate that piece of shit, so you're going to drink the coffee and you're going to damn well like it." With one swift movement of the hand not holding the spatula, Riku grabbed a coffee mug from a nearby shelf and pressed it into Sora's hands.
"Well." Sora grimaced and picked up the coffee pot, then poured some of the strangely thick concoction into his mug. There were a few foreign objects that looked suspiciously like little bits of coffee filter swimming around in there. He cringed, but took the cup nonetheless. He wasn't one to be pushed around, but he decided to humor the older boy. After all, he was working so hard. "I guess we see who wears the pants in this relationship."
And with that he moved his boxer-clad self over to the empty space behind Riku and in front of the pantry. Primarily, this was so he could make noisy slurping noises so that the silver-haired boy would think he was actually drinking that putrid elixir, but now that he was there, he saw it as an opportunity to partake in one of his favorite pastimes: Riku Poking.
Riku shuddered as he struggled to flip a pancake that was sticking stubbornly to the bottom of the pan.
"We have frozen waffles, you know."
"Yes, but toasters and I don't go well together, remember?"
"Do you have a death wish?"
"Oh, but I think you do."
(It's annoying, isn't it?)
Riku shot a glare over his shoulder, and Sora somehow managed to catch it, twist it into one outstanding puppy-dog pout, and throw it back at an unsuspecting Riku.
"Ah." Riku turned back to his pancakes – Sora's pancakes – and tried to stave off his sudden rush of affection for Sora, because he knew that was exactly what the boy wanted. The poking recommenced. "I get it. You're cute. But I swear to God, if you don't stop poking me immediately…"
"You'll what?" Poke, poke, poke.
That was it. Two could play at that game, and Riku knew how to get what he wanted too.
He set his spatula down next to the stove; then, with the agility of a carefully choreographed martial arts move, he whipped around, seized Sora mid-poke, and pushed him by the upper arms against the pantry door behind him. Lukewarm coffee and flecks of porcelain went flying in all directions as Sora's mug smashed against the stone kitchen floor, but neither of them seemed to notice or care. Riku was leaning in, closing the distance between their faces slowly but surely.
"You've got pancake batter in your eyelashes," said a bemused Sora, whose hangover seemed to be long forgotten. He could feel Riku's sharp hips pinning his against the pantry.
Riku counted the freckles on Sora's nose. Seven. "I'm going to kiss you now, if you don't mind."
Sora's eyes were half-closed, but never before had they been so blue. He felt the older boy's hot breath on his lips. "Please. Be my guest."
And kiss he did, like it was going out of style, like it was all that ever mattered – and to him, it was. His lips were warm and gently dominant, and Sora could feel him mouth the words "You bastard" into his own lips when the boy didn't taste the coffee in his mouth. He lifted his chin and ran his fingertips over the cotton of Riku's undershirt, right below his collarbone, and he sensed that responsive warm shiver. Ha. Honestly, the boy was so easy to turn on once you found the switch. Riku's hands had moved from Sora's arms to his bare hips, and soon one was snaking around to the small of his back while the other traced a teasing path over his unclothed ribs as their mouths clashed. Though Sora was being held tightly by Riku and pressed firmly against the wooden door, he couldn't help his strange spreading sensation of freedom. This was right. This was it, was all he'd ever need: to have those hands to hold and those lips to drink and those eyes to blaze with passion for him and him alone, like they were the only ones that really, truly existed when they had each other. For how could anyone else ever feel this complete?
But alas, they weren't the only ones in existence. Not for long, at least.
"Your pancakes are burning."
There were two identical gasps and a tiny smack and the kiss was over. Riku jumped back, and they caught sight of Tifa through a cloud of acrid smoke. She was turning off the stove with a look of passive amusement, despite – or perhaps because of – having just witnessed Riku ravishing Sora against a pantry door. Riku shoved his hands in his pockets in an attempt at nonchalance. Sora looked around frantically before snatching a cookie sheet off of a nearby countertop and covering his bare chest with it.
"Tifa!" Sora's voice was a squeak.
"What?" she looked up at him serenely, picking up the pan and putting it in the sink. "Am I supposed to be surprised?"
Riku concealed a grin as he glanced at Sora's bright red face and was about to speak, but stopped short at the sound of bare feet padding into the room. Moments later, a head of remarkably unruly hair announced Cloud's arrival. He had his eyes shut while yawning, and when opened them he stopped in his tracks. Apparently, he hadn't been counting on anyone being in the kitchen to see him, because he was still wearing his pajamas – more specifically, a blue sleeveless undershirt that clashed terribly with his boxer shorts, which upon closer inspection were adorned with little figures that bared an uncanny resemblance to… yes, those we definitely fuzzy pink bunnies.
Long awkward pause…
"What?" Cloud said defensively to the way Tifa and Riku were looking at him. Sora on the other hand was too busy looking scandalized, and besides, he didn't have much room to talk about embarrassing underpants. "Haven't you ever seen bunnies before?"
"Yeah, but not on a grown man's ass," Riku remarked. Tifa smiled, no teeth. Cloud shot Riku a look of annoyance and fell in with Tifa, taking the spatula and helping her scrape the charred remains of the pancakes out of the bottom of the pan. She stooped and began carefully picking up shards of the coffee mug.
"What happened in here?" Cloud asked, his voice once again monotone.
"Riku and Sora were making out," Tifa replied casually. His head snapped up, and he looked up at Tifa, then over to Riku and the half-naked Sora with an expression of mild disturbance, then merely shrugged and went back to the pan.
With a blink and a quick look around, Sora took a breath and two cautious steps towards the door, hoping that somehow he could make a break for it. Riku must have sensed it though, for without even turning around he caught Sora by the wrist and pulled the smaller boy up beside him, murmuring out of the corner of his mouth "Oh, no you don't. We're in this together." It was spoken too quietly for Sora to distinguish whether his tone was intended to be threatening or comforting, which he thought was very much like their relationship in a nutshell.
"Good morning!" came an exceptionally perky voice from around the corner, and no one even had to look to see who was coming in.
Brilliant, let's just have a party! Everyone come join the awkward silence! Riku thought to himself.
"Hi, Yuffie," they said in a monotone chorus.
She came to a halt staring at Cloud's bunny boxers, giggling. Cloud looked about as highly irritated as his personality would allow, which wasn't much, and maneuvered his lower half behind the counter. "They made out!" he said quickly, pointing an accusatory finger at Riku and Sora. He had always been good at diversions. Riku, maintaining a tight grip on Sora's hand, rolled his eyes and groaned. Yuffie looked at Riku, then Sora, then their clasped hands, then back at Cloud.
"Well, it's about time," said a low voice that most certainly did not belong to Yuffie. No one had noticed when Leon had come slinking silently in and slip between Cloud and Yuffie, who was now mopping up pancake batter. (Riku muttered something to the effect of "Haven't you people ever heard of closing the goddamn door?") He ogled a now extremely aggravated Cloud, taking in his cutesy boxer shorts with a derisive snort.
"One word," Cloud growled, brandishing the spatula at Leon. "One word about the bunnies and I will not hesitate to castrate you with this spatula."
"Touchy, touchy," he replied coolly, nudging Cloud's cooking instrument aside. Rather than making himself useful in the clean-up effort, he leaned casually on the countertop. "So did the two lovebirds wreak this havoc?"
"Surprised?" Cloud quipped.
"Oh, come on!" Sora said, finally breaking his silence and dropping his cookie sheet with a clatter. "Why isn't anyone shocked about this? Is there just something about us that screams 'flaming homosexuals?'?"
"Don't answer that."
Fin... for real this time.
P.S. For those of you who care, there's info about my next Riku/Sora project in my profile. Woo!