Disclaimer: Nobody in the Gravitation universe belongs to me. I claim no kinship whatsoever and sing Maki Murakami's praises. The only thing I'm getting out of writing these is sick sadistic pleasure out of making the characters' lives even more difficult.
Chapter 28: Return of Seguchi
A watch flew across the room, skittering along the floor with a metallic clatter as it protested the rough treatment it was receiving. The leather wallet followed after it with a softer thud. Cigarettes. Lighter. Handkerchief. One after another, a slow steady pile was forming a trail across the floor from bedroom to kitchen. Letting out an exasperated breath, Eiri tilted his head back and ran his fingers through his bangs in the classic pose he used when he was being dramatic. Gone, they were all gone. Every single fucking pill. The jars had suspiciously vanished from his coat pocket, the night stand AND the desk drawer where he'd tucked the refills away. At first, the novelist had suspected Shuichi but dismissed the thought almost immediately after it had formed. The noisy brat nearly suffered panic attacks every time he missed a dose, alternating between being helpful and being a complete moronic pain in the ass.
Both Tatsuha and his father knew better than to mess with his medication and they hadn't been to his house. Correction, Tatsuha had been to his house but brother's case was closed since he hadn't been there long enough to find all of his hiding spots. Mika was a firm believer of pushing pills, almost to the point of making him believe that she was taking a cut from the doctors, or owned a majority of their stock. That only left…..
The sound of the doorbell rang through the house, which Eiri immediately stormed over to answer. It gave him a brief respite from hunting in vain, not to mention granting him a convenient punching bag (if only verbally). A brief glance at the clock told him that Shu wasn't due home for hours. "Tohma," he finally growled out, amber gaze glaring at his brother-in-law. "Why am I not surprised?"
Hat tilted back on his head, Tohma looked more like a twelve-year-old than a man of thirty-two. Fur collar framing the boyish face, the N-G president held up a bottle of liquor in his hands almost like a shield as he chirped, "Good morning to you too, Eiri-kun!" Without asking, he stepped past the taller blond and made himself at home, placing the bottle on the kitchen counter on his way to the fridge.
"What do you want, Tohma? I'm busy." Eiri asked, his voice still low and dangerous as he shut the door and stalked closer. No witnesses were a good thing to have none of.
Tsking over the abandoned items strewn across the floor, Tohma shut the refrigerator and slid a glance towards the younger man, unafraid of the vicious mood he was being subjected to. He knew Eiri would never truly hurt him. At least, he was 87% sure. "I can see that." Another sly glance at the abused objects revealed a malicious sparkle in his eyes. "Shindou-kun finally rubbed off on you so much as to give you bad cleanliness habits, Eiri-kun?"
"If all you came over for was to make jokes and help me kill my liver, then fine. Job's done. Get out."
"Really, Eiri-kun, you're SO rude." Tohma pouted, taking his hat off and laying it next to the bottle of his brother-in-law's favorite booze. That the novelist wasn't immediately going for it could either be a bad sign or a good one. He just had to find out which.
"How are you only noticing NOW?" The words were muffled as Eiri's hands had come up to rub his face. "Time to go, Seguchi. I can't find my prescriptions, move it." Picking up the abused necessities, he stuffed them into their respective pockets almost haphazardly as he headed for the door. He knew that Seguchi would come or go on capricious whims despite the fact that he usually tagged along like a puppy.
"You mean I'm actually invited, Eiri? I'm honestly shocked." Tohma's stunned expression lasted only a moment and at least appeared authentic. One could never tell with him though, what his true emotions were. A true adept at emotional manipulation, both his own and everyone else's, Tohma Seguchi was not one to trifle with lightly. Even Eiri himself gave in to him more often than not, a fact that the older man found more than satisfying, despite Eiri's own feelings on the matter.
Eiri tossed Tohma an irritated glance over his shoulder, his hand on the knob of the already-open door. "Stop trying to play innocently obtuse. It's annoying and noisy." Stepping out into the corridor, the novelist didn't care if Tohma came or went. Technically, he would prefer it if he'd left altogether, but at least if the president of N-G was bugging ~him~, then he couldn't harass his employees. "Don't you have a new son to ruin the life of? He's not going to turn out as another creepy clone like Fujisaki did, is he?"
Tohma frowned almost petulantly as he was left behind. With a resigned sigh, he shut the door behind him, making sure it was locked. It was his own fault that his little Eiri-kun had sunk deep into his ultra-asshole mode after all. He could hardly complain now that it had occurred. Plastering one of his smiles into place, the shorter blond slid into the car before the grumpy blonde could ditch him. "He's far from ruined, despite Shindou-san's attempts to the contrary. Fujisaki is not a creepy clone of me either!"
"Leave him out of this…. And yes he is." Eiri immediately growled, pulling out at thirty miles an hour and cutting someone off who nearly collided with his rear bumper. Glaring into the rear-view mirror, he dared the other driver to hit him.
"By the way, how IS Shindou-kun these days? Has he been causing you grief?" Tohma asked perkily, keeping a wary eye on the car behind them. Hopefully, there weren't any nearby police officers, he'd hate to try to talk their way out of a ticket right now.
"Wouldn't you like to know? Aren't you the one running him ragged right now?" came the snide question back as Eiri spotted the street he wanted quickly approaching. "Drop it Seguchi. You can ask me after I get my pills." Without warning, he turned the corner, nearly clipping a pedestrian in the process.
Eye to eye with the would-be victim for a few seconds, Tohma's smile finally slipped as he murmured, "Of course, Eiri-kun." The last thing he needed at the moment was an accident to occur. Hastily he made sure his seat belt was fastened.
The receptionist on duty knew the pair quite well and smiled to them both as they stepped up to her counter. "Good afternoon, Yuki-san. Seguchi-san. What brings you here?"
"Refills." Tohma said as he gave the young woman a tiny smile in greeting while he watched Eiri out of the corner of his eyes. As usual it seemed as if his young charge was going to play his games to get what he wanted.
Eiri leaned closer to the woman and sniffed at her a moment before murmuring, "You're wearing something new, aren't you Arisa-san?" Taking another sniff, he continued, "It smells really good on you."
"Charmer," Arisa chided, waving him off as she rose from her seat. A big fan of the Yuki x Shindou pairing, she wasn't about to let Eiri ruin that or be the cause of said ruining. "Again? Didn't we just refill all of your prescriptions?" she asked, already getting up to retrieve his file.
"Lost them," Eiri growled shortly, eyeing Tohma warily. He could swear that the man was up to no good, he just couldn't prove it yet.
"Let's see what we can do then," Arisa replied, turning the pages of Eiri's rather thick folder. "Help yourself to some coffee while you wait."
"Thanks." Giving her cheek a peck, Eiri made his way over to the staff's coffee machine without offering one to Seguchi. It was infinitely better than the sludge the staff offered the waiting room guests. Out of the corner of his eye, he kept watch over Tohma who'd asked for a cup despite the rude snub.
Waiting until he was sure that Eiri was distracted, Tohma leaned over and whispered into Arisa's ear, "Is there a way we can also speak with Eiri-san's therapist? I think he's stressed over the past few weeks but he won't talk to any of us."
"I'll check on that as well," Arisa promised, heading over to the pharmacy section. If Tohma had waited to ask without Yuki-san standing next to them, then obviously discretion was in order.
"Thank you," Tohma replied cordially, turning towards the coffee machine to see what was taking Eiri so long. Coffee never took that long. Aqua eyes widened when all he saw was a steaming cup waiting for him, a mother with a sick child and a man with a cast. He'd forgotten that Eiri could read lips and had probably realized what he'd been up to. Now it would take forever to track him down again, time he didn't have with the party that night. "Damn."
Having left the car in case Tohma had bugged it with a tracer (knowing him that prospect was more than likely), Eiri stalked down the block, a look of death warding off all potential interference. "Fucking Seguchi, messing with my life again, even after he'd promised to lay off. If he didn't manage to distract Mika once in awhile and keep her off my ass, I'd be more tempted to kill him."
A sad-eyed woman tripped in front of him and he paused to step around her, eyes widening slightly as he realized she was partially translucent.
"I'm sorry," she whispered. "I didn't mean to get in your way." Standing, the woman dusted off her old-fashioned coat. From the way her voice sounded, it was as if she didn't expect to be heard. Like she was used to being ignored by everyone around her, yet apologized anyway.
"Don't worry about it," The novelist immediately responded before his brain caught up with his mouth. Apparently, his ghost-thing was still turned on, something he hadn't noticed in his preoccupation with pesky individuals. Not to mention sex. Sex was good. Seguchi was not.
The sad eyes widened to their fullest as she brought her hands to her mouth. "You… you can see me? Hear me?" It seemed as if she wasn't sure whether he really could, but hope flickered across her features.
Panic flickered briefly across the novelist's features as the implications shoved themselves in his face. The panic immediately slid into resigned weariness, he really didn't have time for this. "Fuck."
Two hours later, keys rattled against the door before it opened, revealing a haggard blonde, coat hanging off of one shoulder and an expression that blended exhaustion, stress and annoyance into a chaotic latte with a double shot of aggravation espresso thrown in just for shits and giggles. He'd finally managed to get that damned ghost to leave him alone. The upside was that he had finally learned where to accurately place his fingers for the monk's exorcism of sending them on their fucking merry way.
Dropping his things, he began looking up houses to rent, plotting on getting two of them. One that he didn't care if Seguchi invaded, one for him to hide out when he didn't want to be bothered by anyone. He would put it in the last place that Tohma would ever think to look. This time he wasn't going through a real estate agent either, he suspected Seguchi had all of them on his payroll. There wasn't any other way the man could know his new address THAT fast otherwise. Picking up the phone, he began dialing the first number, "Hello, yes? I'd like to talk to you about…."