They always seemed so damn close, and it irked him.
Whether it was at a crime scene or in the police department, they were always together, him hovering by her shoulder, hands on her arms, neck, head. But that would have been alright apart from the fact that she didn't seem to mind; never complained when he touched her, manhandled her. Higuchi couldn't understand why.
His brain developed multiple solutions for the conundrum, some of which were ridiculous, other which were viable, but only one answer stayed in his mind, festering.
It bothered him. It bothered him more than he'd like to admit.
He assured himself it had nothing to do with the way he felt about the young detective. They were just friends, after all. Acquaintances, really.
No, it definitely wasn't that. Definitely not.
Well, for whatever reason, he was determined to get the truth out of one of them, and since he'd rather die than ask Yako (guys just didn't ask girls that sort of thing, especially if they were only acquaintances, which was all they were, after all), he only had one other option; ask her assistant.
The pair were coming by the station that afternoon; Usui had requested an audience with the detective. Higuchi could only imagine what the asshole was going to say to her, and found himself wishing it was him in there, instead. Why he thought that, he didn't know.
When they came in, Yako was shown where to go by Sasazuka. The assistant, realising he wasn't needed, loitered near the door. Now was his chance.
"Hey." he said casually, approaching. "It's Neuro, isn't it?"
The man turned his head slightly, revealing one blazing green eye. "What do you want?" he asked, and Higuchi was surprised at how deep his voice was. The computer expert was expecting the usual jovial, child-like tone the assistant employed, and it threw him somewhat. To be honest, it was kind of intimidating.
"Oh, er, you know, stuff." Higuchi replied, mentally pinching himself for sounding so stupid. 'Some genius I am…' he thought bitterly.
Neuro turned around fully this time, arms crossed across his broad chest, an unimpressed expression on his face. Those odd, slightly feminine bits of jewellery in his two-toned hair (the guy was getting weirder the more Higuchi studied him) swung slightly as he moved.
"Are you purposefully trying to waste my time, human?"
The way he pronounced 'human' made it sound like an insult. Screw weird; this guy was goddamn creepy.
"I-I just want to ask you something about your boss."
"…my boss?" the assistant replied, incredulous.
"Yeah, you know," Higuchi replied, slightly confused, "Yako?"
The man blinked, but then it dawned on him. He smiled. "Oh, of course. My…boss. What is it you want to know?" He sounded sincere, but to Higuchi his smile looked exceedingly cynical. He decided to stop beating around the bush and just ask the tall bastard what he wanted to know.
"You know, just between us guys…are you and Yako…you know…"
The enigmatic man clearly didn't.
"Are we what, exactly?" he replied, raising an eyebrow.
"Are you…hitting it?" Higuchi whispered, attempting to ease the awkwardness of the question by involving slang, but it only seemed to make things worse, as he could feel his cheeks lighting up.
"Am I hitting it?" The assistant's eyes lit up, and a broad smile curled across his face. "Why yes, I hit it very hard."
Higuchi's eyes bulged out of his head, his glasses slipping of his forehead to smack into his nose as his brain tried to process what the man had said. "Wh…what?"
"I hit her all the time. At least five, ten times a day. It improves character."
"Improves…character." Higuchi repeated, his voice monotonic, a dazed expression clouding his face.
'...wait a minute, did he just say ten fucking times a day?!
"Oh yes!" Neuro replied, and that familiar happy expression came over his face, somewhat tainted by the demonic grin exposing what looked like unnaturally sharp teeth. "It's very enjoyable. You should try it sometime." And he winked.
The bastard winked at him.
Yako emerged from Usui's office, looking flustered and angry.
"Come on Neuro, we're leaving." she said, making to walk past him. Her assistant moved to follow her, but somehow his foot ended up between her feet and made her trip. She landed face first on the floor with a shriek, causing her skirt to flick up. Right in front of Higuchi.
"Oh my, Sensei is so clumsy!" Neuro tittered, grabbing the girl by the back of the neck and pulling her upward sharply.
Higuchi stared at the pair for a second, and then smiled. "Well hell," Higuchi said to himself sardonically, watching Yako struggling to her feet, oblivious of the show she'd just given him. "If I was him, I'd hit it, too."