A/N: This is the prequel to Proposal, but you don't necessarily need to have read Proposal in order for it to make sense. After adding about 400 more words to this, I had to bump up the rating, haha.


Of Vague Notes and Shiny Surprises

The sunlight creeping through the dusty glass of the window was bright. Frustratingly so.

Hiroki hissed, shielding his eyes before simply rolling back over and covering his head with a pillow. He cursed himself for forgetting to shut the blinds the night before. Not that it could have been helped with Nowaki assaulting him so passionately like he had, anyway.

The summer storm of yesterday night wasn't long, sudden yet relentless while it lasted. Nowaki had returned home damp, hair and neck glistening in raindrops. In the darkness, his eyes seemed to glow with an unspoken need. Hiroki felt powerless under his penetrating gaze.

Nowaki was still as he stood at the foot of their bed, saying nothing and looking as though he didn't intend to any time soon. It was as if he were a statue. A glorious statue. Somehow, Hiroki didn't think that Nowaki was planning to warm up by taking a bath. He saw it there, in his eyes, and he felt it there, in the air between them.

He peeled Nowaki's clothes off one by one, insisting that he should change and take a hot bath nonetheless. And while Hiroki had complained and scolded the entire time he did so, Nowaki was so impossibly cold that Hiroki rubbed at his lover's skin in desperation.

He paused, laying his hand flat across Nowaki's chest and letting his fingers wander across the solid planes of his stomach. He liked the sturdy feel of Nowaki's muscles. Perhaps a little too much.

Nowaki watched him with that polite smile and those translucent blue eyes of his. He didn't shiver until Hiroki licked his midriff. Though Hiroki's expression showed anger, his cheeks were burning red.

Nowaki was triggered to pounce.

Hiroki still considered pushing him off, or at least he tried to convince himself he had, until Nowaki started touching him and his body felt alit, burning in all the right places.

Almost too slowly, he realized he wanted this man. Ohh, how he wanted this man. He wanted this man as much as this man wanted him. And it was ridiculous really, how much he couldn't tear himself away from him.

He itched to cry out, biting his lip as he threw his head back and tried to regain control, but Nowaki continued unevenly massaging him and Hiroki felt the need to touch him, too, touching Nowaki anywhere and everywhere he could reach. Skin touched skin. Hiroki crushed their lips together, breathing in his air, his scent, the sweet smell of him.

"Hiro-san!"

The sun returned the following morning as Hiroki was forced to observe.

The sheets felt cool against his bare skin as his hand slid across them, grasping at the spot beside him. It was empty. Of course it was; he should know to expect that. He sat up.

As Hiroki blearily blinked around, he couldn't help but notice how empty the apartment was. Silence echoed throughout their seemingly large bedroom and into the next room.

It was lonely without Nowaki, Hiroki admitted bitterly. This was their 'sanctuary' after all, the one place where they could be together without fear of unwelcome stares. Hiroki felt a little awkward being here, having this been one of his only days off in which Nowaki wasn't able to join him.

Was this how Nowaki felt when he wasn't there?

Hiroki planted his feet firmly on the floor. He drowsily leaned on his bedside table, wrist half-sliding on a small sheet of wrinkled paper. He would have dismissed it had he not recognized Nowaki's stiffly scribbled kanji.

Hope you like it.

-Nowaki

He stared at the note for a moment, utterly confused by the extreme vagueness of it, before squeezing it into a ball and thrusting the note at the floor, his expression livid.

That big idiot clearly needs to be taught how to communicate a message, Hiroki thought angrily.

But as he reached up to scratch his head, something passing in his vision made him freeze. Something gold.

His mind slowly pushed things together. There was nothing else it could be, after all. It also explained Nowaki's strange behavior the previous night...

As realization dawned on him, he gasped, heart skipping a beat. "Oh God..."

His hand flew to his face, covering his eyes as his cheekbones stained pink. His heart raced, pumping faster and faster. He swallowed, took a deep breath, held out his arm, and peeked between his fingers.

Hiroki's stomach did a strange sort of somersault as his eyes landed upon the ring wrapped delicately around his finger. The sun made it glisten as he held it under the light.

It was definitely something. A shiny, gold 'endless' something.

The hand covering his face dropped to his lap. Hiroki didn't know what to say as scattered, nearly incoherent thoughts bounced around in his head, but he held his hand unknowingly close, cradling it to his chest like a treasure.

Engraved on the inside of the ring was a special note:

I'll always love you. We are forever.

-Nowaki

Hiroki thought maybe his lover wasn't so bad at writing messages after all.