"I think," Takamiya said, looking off into the distance. His eyes rarely finding him now. "That we should spend some time away from here. Just the two of us. I think we need to getaway from all of this and try to remember why we have stayed together for so long."

Izumi looked at him and then at the bookcase filled with so many translations. Fifteen years. Fifteen long years they had been together. Izumi couldn't believe it. Almost half of his life had been spent with this man. And after fifteen long years, there was this gap between them. A deep abyss that couldn't be filled even if all the rocks on Earth were brought to close it up.

"I think your right," Izumi returned. There was no redness in his cheeks. Time had gotten rid of that. Though there was always that embarrassment. And always that struggle. But fifteen years was too many just to call an end to this relationship. They needed a chance. A chance to be able to say, "I love you" again without having to go through the formality of gift giving or sex. It should turn into something that is said when leaving for work or sipping tea, or eating dinner, or just simply saying it in a casual conversation. It should no longer be this forced thing that it has become.

"Where should we go, you pick." Takamiya turned to Izumi. Trying to the make eye contact that he so rarely made.

"Out of this country," Izumi said, his eyes still on the bookcase. "I'm tired of speaking English."

"So you want to go back to Japan?" Takamiya asked, trying to get Izumi to notice that his eyes were staring so intensely at him.

"Japan sounds nice. Let's just travel. Do the tourist thing, you know," Izumi noticed the gaze. He had for while, but he was ignoring it.

"Sounds like a good plan. When do you think you could get vacation days?"

"I don't know. Probably next month. I'll get two weeks. Let's go to Kyoto, too. I want to see my family."

"I don't think your mom likes me anymore," Takamiya said, trying to laugh. But it came out coarse and forced.

"Doesn't change the fact that I want to see them."

Takamiya realized that it was useless trying to get Izumi to look back at him so he returned his gaze back to the computer screen where his latest translation was on its way.

"I'll start making the reservations."

"'K," Izumi walked off. He didn't want to be in there anymore.

But Takamiya's footsteps were soon heard. Izumi turned, looking at the murky brown eyes that used to make his stomach swirl and his lips curl into a smile. Now it only brought a distant stare and an unmoving mouth. "Yeah?" Izumi asked.

Takamiya breathed deeply, as if to say something, then released it as if he all but forgot—or didn't want to tell. He reached out, as if to touch Izumi's face, but paused. He stared at the forming wrinkles and darkening patches on his own hand. Had he really become that old?

"You okay Takamiya? Need something?" Izumi asked, slight concern laced in his voice.

Takamiya snapped out of his trance, "Nothing, I was jus thinking we could stay at Aoe's. We could ride horses; you love doing that. There's camping and fishing. Everything."

"That was a long time ago."

"Does it really make a difference?"

Izumi stared at the floor, looking at the intricate lines the wooden planks made as they flowed towards the white wall. "Yeah…it does."

Izumi pushed passed Takamiya and went to his office, sitting in the chair that almost broke when Takamiya snuck in and handed him a hot cup of tea "just because he looked tired." Then he sat on Izumi's lap "just because he looked lonely." That was the first night Izumi had ever been the one to make love rather than have love made to. He remembered Takamiya's face as he climaxed, the tight clench of his eyes, all muscles in face tense, almost as if in pain, then, pure relaxation and joy. It was the first and only time Izumi saw his face like that. Izumi took Takamiya many more times so that he could see that face again, but it seemed to be a rare event that the Gods bestowed upon him for just that one day.

Izumi stared at the computer screen filled with pictures from the photo shoot the other day that needed to be place in ads. He sighed. When had life become like this? Just sitting at the computer, doing work, getting the paycheck, paying off the mortgage, come home, get a kiss on the cheek before bed, repeat. Every day. Same routine. He wondered if his father's life had become like this, but doubted it since his younger brother, Katsumi, stilled lived in their house. That might add a bit of difference to a routine.

Izumi minimized the photos and went on the Internet; maybe he could find some things to do for their vacation. Mountain climbing (too tough), nice hotel in city (too loud), Aoe's house (…no), Hot springs (sounds…relaxing. Romantic possibly?).

"Takamiya," Izumi shouted louder than he wanted to, gruffer and angrier than the sound he wanted.

Takamiya entered his office, pain in his eyes. Was he in trouble? "Yes?" He asked, his voice weak and passive.

Izumi put on a small smile, "I was looking at some places, and found this. How does going to some hot springs sound?"

Takamiya thought about it. When they were younger, fresh in their relationship, Takamiya always begged Izumi to go to hot springs or bath houses, but Izumi always refused, too embarrassed about being seen as a couple in an open place. And this made Takamiya think, when had Izumi become so bold? When had he become some one who was not afraid to let people know of their relationship? Why now?

"That—that sounds nice," Takamiya said, stumbling over his words.

Izumi broke his small smile and turned it into a grin. Takamiya's stomach swirled; he loved that smile.

"Ok," Izumi said, small bits of glee in his voice. "I'll find a nice one and we can go there."

Takamiya nodded and walked away, he needed a chance to think—his stomach hadn't swirled like that in a long time.


Hello, k, this is ch.1. Yay! ...I'll try and update this weekly ^^

But yeah, this is a Love Mode Fanfic and if you've never read the manga, it's by Yuki Shimizu and is absolutely amazing. A must read ^^

Well, until next week.