Title: Trying New Things

Word Count: 864

Summary/Notes: This takes place after the end of the flashback in episode 20, after the twins meet with Tamaki at the host club for the first time, but before they begin taking customers. I feel the ending is abrupt, but I don't know what else to do.

The two sat in quiet consideration, glancing occasionally from one another to the small stack of reading material piled on the bed between them. Each had in his lap a selection from said pile-- Kaoru was half-way through a boys love manga, while Hikaru was looking at doujinshi. They both seemed unsure of how to react to what they'd read. Finally, Hikaru broke the silence with a brief laugh.

"Any girl who would take this stuff even remotelyseriously is a gullible ditz," he said, smirking. Kaoru mirrored his twin's expression and nodded.

"I bet it would be easy to make them fall all over themselves." Kaoru closed the manga given to him by Tamaki and set it beside him. Their smiles faded and the silent stillness of the bedroom suddenly felt oppressive.

"We already went to the first meeting," Hikaru said.

"So we may as well do it," Kaoru finished. He couldn't help but think that this decision was somehow important.

On the other hand, the whole thing was absurd-- just hours earlier, they had listened to that impressive dolt, Suoh Tamaki, spewing all sorts of nonsense about how wonderful the host club was to be, and how proud they all should feel to be part of it, before dumping these books on them and instructing them to go home, study, and practice their "techniques." All of the manga given to the twins had some sort of shonen-ai theme, and most of the doujin was about incest. At first, it was mind-boggling to think that they were expected to act this way, much less that girls would respond to it. But all this literature wasn't popular for nothing, was it?

Absurd, and yet, it wasn't entirelystupid. It... might be fun, actually. Like a game.

"Well," Hikaru said suddenly, setting his doujinshi on top of the pile and pushing it all out of the way. "Let's at least try it out."

"What? Try what out?" Kaoru's eyes widened as Hikaru scooted closer to him on the bed.

"You know... thatstuff. If we're going to be in his club, we'll have to do it eventually."

"Uh... I guess," Kaoru replied nervously, twisting the hem of his shirt in his hands and averting his eyes. The corner of Hikaru's mouth quirked into a half-smile.

"You're acting like the boy from the story I just read. It was about two brothers, and the younger one was all shy. The older one wanted..." Hikaru trailed off, blushing. It was somehow comforting to Kaoru that his brother was at least a little embarrassed as well. But if Hikaru was brave enough to suggest they try it out, Kaoru decided to meet him half way.

"Okay," Kaoru said with resolve, facing his brother. "Kiss me." Hikaru seemed as taken aback by this as Kaoru was with Hikaru's first statement. He rubbed the back of his neck with one hand, looking at the floor. When he looked up again, Kaoru was leaning forward with his eyes closed (more like clenched shut, as if anticipating an attack by a monster) and lips puckered. Hikaru resisted the urge to giggle at the face his twin was making. Instead, he leaned forward and met his brother's lips with his own. He expected Kaoru to jerk away when they touched, but he didn't. If anything, Kaoru may have leaned into the kiss a little bit.

After a few moments, the two pulled away from each other. Kaoru had relaxed considerably; he even opened his eyes. Hikaru didn't quite feel relaxed-- less nervous for sure, but now he felt charged. He tried to shake the feeling.

"Kinda weird," Kaoru said.

"Yeah," Hikaru agreed. "But not... reallybad."

"No. Not really bad."

The twins stared at one another for a few moments that felt like several minutes to them both. Kaoru's cheeks flushed pink in embarrassment. He opened his mouth to apologize for the awkwardness, but before any sound came out he found his mouth covered by Hikaru's. It was startling, but Kaoru melted into the kiss much easier than he expected, and soon found his finger's in his older twin's soft hair.

Finally they pulled away, both with racing hearts, unsure of just what had happened between them.

"I think it's better if we don't do this in front of girls," Kaoru said softly.

"Alluding to a relationship will be much more effective," Hikaru agreed.

They started working on scripts to perform in front of the female customers, adapting lines from sappy shonen-ai mangas. True to their agreement, they never kissed in front of the girls, but merely implied what was going on behind closed doors in the Hitachiin household. Only the craziest fangirls truly believed in the act; the other host club members assumed it was a fabrication, and for the most part it was.

But sometimes before sleep, Kaoru would curl against his brother's back and press a kiss to his shoulder blade. Or Hikaru might distract Kaoru with a slow kiss when the younger concentrated on his homework too hard.

Neither was sure where this was heading. But there was nothing wrong with trying new things.