I don't own Bakumatsu Kikansetsu Irohanihoheto.

Enomoto musing on Soutetsu... more serious... I think...

This started out as a drabblet for akumasama (a friend on LJ) then... degenerated into a full-blown Yaoi fic...

Warning: Eno/Sou...

I HATE Enomoto... why am I writing him? Tell me people...

Read and REVIEW!


Betwixt Scenes Lies The Truth

In between all the filing, the letters, the meetings and the hours spent pouring over the map, Enomoto sometimes wondered. A second of time musing on this mystery. It was more apparent when the playwright rose gracefully to his feet, excusing himself politely for the night. And passing the man's door, Enomoto knew, by the crack of light at the lintel that, yes, Ibaragi-kun was up (yet again) writing. And then, perhaps, in the dark, he wondered even more.

He asked Hijikata off-handedly, jokingly, during a tea break of one particularly long strategic session. But the Shinsengumi shrugged, a scowl on his face - and Enomoto couldn't help but chuckle at the samurai. For all his expertise and experience, Hijikata couldn't grasp the meaning behind the playwright - and it bothered him. Obviously. It was there in those secret glares between them. Something silent and growing. An edge to the tension... It was amusing... But didn't answer Enomoto's question.

What were Ibaragi-kun's plays like?

Katsu-sama could have told him. His eyes would have lost their sparkle and grown dark in serious thought, the sake in his cup swirling around idly as he tried to put the whole matter into words. But words can't describe history on stage. One only can watch the devastation helplessly, knowing that behind the act, there was a darkness and truth.

Akidzuki could have told him. But the boy was silent in the face of the suave playwright and kept his opinions to himself. Besides which, meeting Enomoto would hardly end with a thoughtful discussion on didactices of playwrighting. Nor would there be time to discuss the machinations of Soutetsu-san.

So Enomoto never found out. Nobody told him. And sometimes, when there was that moment of idleness that he would find every now and then in the late evening - when the men had dispersed for drinks, or bed, or better yet, a woman - Enomoto would find his way to the playwright's room. To discuss the finer points of something considered earlier on that day. In reality to watch the straight back and listen to the careful scrawl of the pen on paper.

It never occurred to the General to ask his...

What do I call you, Ibaragi-kun...

Inferior?

It never occurred to the General to ask the playwright what his plays were about. He had heard that they were historical thrillers about supernatural events. The Troupe acting them had gained a great following. There was a rumor that they were in town...

But there was something quiet - withdrawn - not submissive, certainly - in the writer's air, and Enomoto, respecting those spaces between them, hadn't asked. And even though that day came, when the evening had seemed to last even longer than normal, and the silence was oppressive - and suddenly, the wide fort wasn't so welcoming anymore - Enomoto found some satisfaction in the stifled grunts of his partner as he slowly pressed deeper and deeper into that darkness.

When the playwright rose stiffly, Enomoto said nothing. He had a feeling the man harbored some deep seated anger then - but it was heady stuff. He was after all their leader, in charge and owned everything through sheer will. With the help of certain individuals who had been lucky enough to follow his star - but nevertheless...

It never occurred to the General, that Soutetsu found it amusing - when Enomoto came to him for aid.

"You write well, I heard." The General had said stiffly, his eyes roaming around the room - the spartan style evidenced in the general lack of decoration and flounce. Even the bed was smooth as a board, leaving no traces of their...

Not lovemaking... mating... no...

Well... I regret these lack of words - but then... I'm no playwright...

"I thought, perhaps, you would like to write my speech for me for tomorrow night... If you have the time that is," he paused as he remembered the small stack of papers headed out earlier this morning - a whole bunch from Ibaragi-kun to the Troupe.

"Certainly."

There was no pause in the careful writing. Nothing was out of place.

Not a single hair.

And Enomoto couldn't help but chuckle (back in the privacy of his cabin) at the memory of Ibaragi-kun's clenched teeth, the fists wrinkling the sheets and the long black hair messy beneath this fingers as he pushed the man down -

It made him hard all over again, just thinking on it.

In the end, Enomoto never saw a play of Ibaragi-kun's making. The rumors had to suffice. And when word trickled back of a Joan of Arc performance, where a stirring call to arms was made. He wondered - then shook his head.

Enomoto never knew - what Nakaiya found out the hard way -

The players had their roles already written, already enacting - and the stage had been set by Sensei's hands. Never was fiction so factual, for he had written both of their lines.