Disclaimer: Does not belong to me.
With the craziness that had been going on with Yuuri lately, he had completely forgotten all about the upcoming baseball game. One of the first in the season and he hadn't been practicing at all. When he had apologized to Mr. Weller, he had only smiled and said he understood. The man was so nice and just how could Wolfram not like him? If Shouri could have been half as nice as Mr. Weller, things would have been so much better.
But that wasn't the worst of his problems, so Yuuri stopped thinking about that and instead worried about what was actually important: convincing Wolfram that baseball practice was a lot more important than an egg and spending time with him, probably discussing the best way to raise the egg. Or something. Honestly, Yuuri didn't know what Wolfram expected from him when they hung out. Either way, he just couldn't do it today.
Wolfram was waiting by his locker, Liesel's carrier in his hand and Liesel safely snuggled inside.
"Ah, Yuuri, listen--"
"No, you listen!" When Yuuri realized what he said, he blinked in shock and then laughed awkwardly. "Sorry! Just really excited and I'm just worried you aren't going to like this and might want to argue with me." That had been the wrong thing to say. Yuuri had known that as soon as he had said it. Around Wolfram, he needed to think about what he was going to say and he never did. When was he going to learn?
"What are you implying? That I'm unreasonable?" Wolfram didn't look pleased and for once, Yuuri couldn't really blame him.
"No! I mean, okay, yeah, you don't listen to me sometimes--" Wolfram began to look angrier and Yuuri panicked. "But you're not unreasonable! I'm sorry! I just need to tell you I can't hang out with you today because I have baseball practice!"
"That's what I wanted to talk about. Conrad told me and I figured I could just sit on the benches and wait for you to be done. I think this could be considered family bonding time."
For a minute, Yuuri wondered how Wolfram could have known any of that before Yuuri remembered that Conrad was Mr. Weller and he had probably told Wolfram so he wouldn't say no right away. Mr. Weller really was a great guy.
Yuuri smiled and nodded. "Okay then. You know where the baseball field is, right?"
"Hmph, of course I do."
"Okay! Then meet me there and--"
"And then we're having dinner at your place again," Wolfram said and just the way he said showed he wasn't going to allow any room for argument. Things had gone well the last time, no house fires and nobody had lost an eye or anything, so Yuuri didn't bother to say no.
Though 'we're having dinner' made it kind of sound like a date and--Yuuri stopped himself from going any further with those thoughts with an awkward laugh. Seriously, he was over thinking things way too much.
"Class! I am pleased to see so many eggs still living!" Mr. Kleist then sighed and looked to the people who were eggless. "Though I am sad to see a few have left this world. Ah, thank goodness these were not real children. Who in the world throws their children like a ball?" Two boys looked away and snickered a little. Mr. Kleist frowned at them and then went back to cheerfully smiling. "But I really would once again to like point out how well Bielefeld and Shibuya have done with this task! Honestly, buying a carrier for their child. I don't think I have seen two fitter parents."
Wolfram actually had the gall to look smug at the praise Mr. Kleist is giving them. All Yuuri could think of doing was hiding his head in the crook of his elbow on the table. All the other kids in the class thought they'd gone too far and they had. Or at least Wolfram had. But that didn't matter to Wolfram because he just seemed to take any compliment from anybody as a reason to smirk and feel proud.
At the least, Yuuri thought to himself, he must not suffer from low self-confidence.
"Is there anything you would like to say, boys?"
"As a matter of fact, yes." Yuuri groaned and closed his eyes, pretending he was at home, watching a baseball game on his television. "I think how seriously everybody has taken this project really does show how you consider raising a child. Which is kind of disturbing actually. These kids are our future generation!"
"Bielefeld?" One girl raises her hand and looks a little unsure of herself. "I get where you're coming from because yeah, kids are the next in line for the world, but I don't think how well you take care of an egg shows what kind of parent you're going to be. I mean, I really want to be a mom and I love kids, but I'm not about to go buy an egg a baby carrier. That's kind of crazy."
Wolfram turned around to face the girl, who squeaked and looked like she wished she hadn't said anything. "I can understand where you're coming from, but the point of this project is to consider this egg as if it were your child. That is exactly what I'm doing. I wouldn't let my kid be uncomfortable."
The girl looked like she wants to say something else before she shakes her head and Yuuri could understand exactly just how she felt. He felt like that all the time when he was around.
"He's just so serious! It's so refreshing!"
"I can be serious too…"
Wolfram was there waiting for him by his locker again when school had ended. Even though all classes end at the same time, Wolfram is there before him and Yuuri wonders how he is able to do that. It's weird and the idea that maybe Wolfram has some kind of super speed goes through Yuuri's mind for a little while before he brushes it away, laughing.
"Practices are around an hour and a half. Are you sure you really want to stick around for that long? I don't mind if you don't. You could just come to my house later?" Yuuri asked as he walked to the changing rooms. He's standing outside the door.
Wolfram scowled. "Wimp, be quiet. If I said I want to, then I will."
"Aw, you hadn't called me wimp all day." He was very disappointed by that actually and it was probably obvious because he frowns, though it would look like a pout to some.
"Then you shouldn't act like one."
"But I don't act like one! I didn't do anything to be called that! I never have. It's not like I run away crying all the time or something."
"Whatever." Wolfram picked Liesel's carrier back up where he had rested it by his feet. "Just go hurry up and get changed so you don't keep your teammates waiting. There's nothing I hate more than bad manners." He walks away, leaving Yuuri very confused.
Isn't it bad manners to keep calling somebody a wimp when they've done nothing to deserve it? He's used to it now so Yuuri does as Wolfram told him to do and just changes into his outfit. When he gets outside, Wolfram is sitting on the benches with Liesel next to him. He looks so serious and Yuuri chuckles kind of awkwardly. At least it isn't too hot out so he doesn't have to worry about Wolfram getting sunstroke or Liesel bursting from being too hot.
He's doing his stretches and warm-ups when one of his teammates runs up to him. "Hey, Shibuya?"
The guy looks to Wolfram and then back to Yuuri. "I've…been hearing rumors."
Yuuri could feel his stomach drop down to his feet. Honestly, if he looked to Wolfram and then said that, common sense dictated the rumor was probably about Wolfram. Knowing his fan girls and just how Wolfram handled this entire situation, he couldn't help but start panicking in his mind; imagining their yearbook with a picture of him and Wolfram saying "Cutest Couple".
"W-what about?" He stuttered.
"You and Bielefeld. I mean, everybody's been kind of laughing how you and Bielefeld keep that stupid egg in that carrier. 'Cause I mean, wow, Shibuya. Wow. But the girls think it's cute or something, but y'know, girls. Anyway, point is, are the rumors true? Are you actually dating him? It's totally fine if you are! Not judging over here. Got a gay aunt. She's awesome and like, my favorite aunt too! "
It's as bad as Yuuri had worried it was and he let out some noise that sounds a lot like a groan but it's too high to be that. Yuuri shook his head and smiled nervously. "Um, no. We're not dating. His fan girls are just really weird." Really, really weird if they have started saying that.
"Oh! Okay! Haha, oh man! I was so confused because dude, I've seen you staring at the girls' track team like the rest of us and I mean, yeah there's bisexual guys but you've never stared at the guys."
They laugh for a couple more moments and then go to practicing. The entire practice, Yuuri thinks about the rumor and worries how far it's already gone. Some of the guys keep looking at him and then at Wolfram then they look away and what the hell does that mean? But thanks to his own worrying, the practice is a bust and he barely manages to gain anything from it.
When it's done, Mr. Weller goes up to him, looking worried. "Yuuri, is something bothering you? You're usually on the ball and this time--"
"I sucked, I know." Yuuri laughed and sighed. "I guess I'm just tired." It wasn't like he could just go and tell Mr. Weller that the entire reason was because there were rumors he was dating his little brother. Like that wouldn't be awkward at all. "I promise I'll be better next practice."
Mr. Weller smiled kindly. "I'm not worried about that at all. Just make sure you go to bed early and get a good night's sleep, okay?"
"Aye, aye captain!" Yuuri jokingly saluted Mr. Weller, who laughed and walked away. Yuuri sighed once more and walked back to the locker room, where Wolfram was waiting near his locker. Yuuri jumped when he saw him there.
"What are you doing in here?! This is the guy's locker room!"
Wolfram set Liesel down and put a hand on his hip in annoyance. "For the love of--yes, I know. In case you haven't noticed, I am a man."
"That's half the problem…" Yuuri muttered as he sat down on a bench.
"What was that?"
What happened next kind of shocked Yuuri. Suddenly, Wolfram sat down next to him and put a hand on his shoulder. Friendly and in a comforting manner. Yuuri had been half-expecting Wolfram to get irritated with the way he had been acting and tell him to just calm down. It wasn't that Wolfram was mean. Hard to handle and not really the easiest person Yuuri had ever worked with. But he wasn't mean and that wasn't one of the words Yuuri would have ever used to describe him. He really just seemed to be the 'no nonsense!' type. Straight to the point and get it over with kind of person.
"Conrad told me you're a pretty good player and really, I took Liesel out there to see you and so he could be proud of you." Yuuri wasn't even going to bother with the fact Liesel was an egg. That particular fact would never go through Wolfram's head. "Something is bothering you and so I think it's best if you just tell me what and get it off your shoulders."
He removed his hand and waited patiently for Yuuri to tell him, who wasn't even sure if he did feel comfortable telling him. It felt awkward because they were just rumors. Somebody like Wolfram was probably used to them. Yuuri felt kind of like an idiot for letting some stupid gossip bother him. Thinking back on it now, Yuuri was sure that those fan girls of Wolfram probably didn't even say they were dating. They had probably been talking about something else and somebody had misheard them.
"You know, never mind. I think I was just overreacting. See, there's this rumor that we're dating and--"
"That? You were worried over that? Hmph. Here I was worried something serious was going on and you were just worried over that stupid rumor."
"Well, it just surprised me because I never--wait! You're talking like you knew all about the rumor."
Wolfram looked over at him and furrowed his eyebrows. "Of course I heard the rumor. It's about me. The girls that hang around me told me about it and I told them it was a lie. Honestly, acting like a wimp and worrying over stuff like that. What kind of second father does our child have?"
Yuuri gawked at Wolfram, trying to make sense of how he didn't seem affected. "Tell me your secrets! You don't even seem to care."
"That's because I don't. Do you have any idea how many times I've been involved with rumors? Before everybody knew I was gay, somebody saw me with my mother and actually thought I was dating her. Like I'd date somebody that much older than me."
That really was kind of ridiculous. "Wow, I guess I can see why you don't take rumors seriously then," Yuuri said. Now he was glad he'd never been popular enough to have people gossiping about him. That had to be a pain.
"Yes, so don't worry. Besides, when this project is done and we're not around each other anymore, they'll see we aren't dating and probably never were."
It had never hit Yuuri before, but this project wouldn't last forever. Hanging out with Wolfram every day after school, keeping that goofy-faced Liesel around, being called a wimp when he'd done nothing wrong…it would all end one day. Most of it seemed silly to just miss, but he was beginning to get used to Wolfram and actually like him. He wasn't bad at all when he acted normal and didn't seem so uptight. This was the third day of project and it was due in four more days.
He hadn't really expected it and probably had thought it was impossible so soon, but he was beginning to truly consider Wolfram a friend. It'd be kind of depressing to not hang out with him anymore.
"You knew about the rumors?!"
Murata laughed over the phone. "Shibuya, everybody has heard the rumors."
"I hadn't! And they were about me!"
"You aren't the type to pay attention to people whispering and murmuring things to themselves. You're not cut out to be a snoop."
Yuuri frowned at the phone in his hands. "That doesn't matter. What matters is that I can't believe the school thinks I could be going out with Wolfram! I mean, okay, we're around each other a lot lately and all, but I'm not even gay. I really like girls."
"There's bisexuality," Murata offered. That had been the second time that word had been used today.
"But I've never even thought about guys that way. I don't even look at other guys when I'm changing in the locker rooms. We've taken baths at the public bath, too. I didn't stare at you."
"Maybe that's because you're not interested in me. Or any of those guys."
Murata seemed to have an answer for everything. "Anyway." He didn't want to talk about the possibility of him liking guys. It was kind of uncomfortable. "It just bothered me that they think that. I'm not homophobic, but--"
"You couldn't have the hate in you to ever be homophobic. I think you could find it in you to love somebody who burnt your house down."
Yuuri laughed at that because it was probably true. "I don't know why it bothered me so much. It didn't bother Wolfram. He didn't seem to care."
"He's probably more used to rumors than you. And you were probably bothered by it because people were talking about you and spreading lies. That's normal, so I wouldn't think about it too much.
"Yeah, that's probably it," Yuuri mumbled half-heartedly into the phone. Honestly, he was sure it was more than that. It was kind of annoying to have people saying things that weren't true about him, but that really didn't enter his mind too much. "Oh! Today at dinner, Mom made this meal with eggs, right? I can't remember the name, but you should have seen Wolfram's face! I felt kind of bad for wanting to laugh because he seriously seemed disgusted by eating eggs. Mom kept apologizing for being offensive, even though, you know, nothing offensive about eating egg."
Murata laughed at the story and at the moment, Yuuri decided to just forget about the rumors. They were just rumors anyway.
Notes: Would you believe me if I told you guys that I wanted to update this a while ago but my laptop broke so I couldn't? 'Cause that actually happened. :( In some funny news, I've been writing a lot lately. For a bunch of different fandoms and genres and when I wrote this? Let's just say you guys are lucky I proofread my stories because you almost got severely OOC Yuuri. At one point, I had him talking in a valley girl accent. Let's like, just say that like, Yuuri totally talking like this and wanting to go paint his house totally does not work! Totes OOC. I've read over this story time and time again, but I'm still scared someone will catch a terrifying error. :(