He loved his shoulder blades.

The words were sharp on the tongue, sounded strong and solid and unbreakable. And they were Kanda's, so shoulder. Blades. The punning was as important as the actual form of the bones, visible, touchable through the thin, existentially non-existent (if you had one eye and swung Yuu's way) muscle and skin.

He loved them big time, the same way that great big African finder Anfony, him with the six plus feet in stature and the blood of glorified warriors in his veins, the way Anfony would celebrate the death of an Akuma with a deep, whooping shout that Lavi almost, almost understood, the way Anfony and his long arms would hug him in tremendous joy.

Big-time love.

Not the pseudo semi-affection more unreal than the boy he was when he was Personality Number Twenty-Seven, small time liar's love he was sure he felt for Kanda.

For a given value of sure, of course.

Bookman said so, so there! No one knew as much as that old man, with his wispy single pony-tail and punched-in eyes.

Obviously he was right when he said that Lavi didn't, couldn't feel big-time love for other people (couldn't be like the big and boisterous Anfony, really), because what did Personality Number Forty-Nine know?

So Lavi didn't. He told Kanda that he could, that he did, and oh god Kanda believed him, which was why when Lavi says strike, he means Strike!

But if you hear him, you probably aren't seeing what he means.

So he kept small-time love, thin love for Kanda and Allen and Lenalee and them, all of them, and his big-time love was for harmless things, things that the Bookman hasn't said he couldn't feel for.

Like Kanda's shoulder blades.

"Love ya"

He'd say, kissing the smooth, hard things, Kanda unwilling to make weak sounds but vibrating with contained pleasure (Ha, Kanda could feel pleasure, could you believe it) into his pillow, and Lavi worried that his partner would choke on the feathers and the fabric, because Kanda sucked at all shows of physical affection, even now, and could asphyxiate himself when he should be feeling very very warm and very very happy.

But he wasn't his love-r. Oh no no no. He didn't love ink, that would be stupid. How many bottles had he used up in the years he'd been alive?

(For a given value of alive, too)

No, he couldn't love the fussy bitch with the angry heart, but he could love bone and skin and sinew and goosebumps.

That was fine.

So he would, for as long as he could, for as long as Bookman believed that a man wasn't just a sum of his parts.

Because a man wasn't.

Unless all you had to love were just parts, his fingers and eyelids and ankles and back. And that love was big-time love, stupid and loud and deep and bloody determined to not let go.

Then it was a brilliant substitute. Love the curve of his back, love the glint in his eye, love the way his hair fluttered, love the warmth of extended muscle, and he may not love Kanda Yuu, the man in all his agonising (agonised) glory, but he loved enough of him that it was enough.

Enough that when it was dark and they were alone, he could sling an arm around his shoulder and not be killed for it.

And the sight of Kanda's narrow back in dark leather, slicing through everything in his path with a bloodied sword, always walking down and away that running got Lavi just the ability to always keep that back in sight, even when they were both panting and sweaty and Kanda was breathing into his mattress and Lavi was breathing into Kanda's back.

He didn't want to stop looking at it.

He was obsessed with Kanda's back, by sight and by feel.

Because it was hard and delicious to press his fingers into, press so hard that the knuckles bent at right angles to each other, blood rushing away into places that needed it more, when he was the one with his back to the mattress and Kanda was looming over him, angry and maybe a little loving (for as much as Kanda could be, which was also just enough) and making him vibrate. Only Lavi didn't mind making shameful noises and made them he did, feeling overheated and half-blindedly delighted to feel Kanda Yuu's shoulder blades kissing the pads of his fingers.

It was a love affair; only thing was, they loved in parts.

Kanda loved part Forty-Nine of a story that has lived eighteen years.

And Lavi, he loved Kanda's voice and palms and navel and cheek and hipbone.

Lavi loved everything about Kanda.

The only thing he couldn't love was Yuu.

But Kanda didn't know that, and for as long as Lavi could touchtastesee Kanda's shoulder blades, then there wasn't much of a difference.

Not enough of a difference to make a difference.

It was a small-time love that would probably never be allowed to make it big, and Lavi loved Yuu like that, because the small-time was all that he was allowed.


A/N: Don't own! First DGM fic, just so you know. Posted for the RK fest that should be getting WAY more attention. A RK story everyday 'till it's LaviKan! day, and what an utterly wonderful day that will be XD Reviews make me happier than chocolate (and that's a lot of happy, mmhmm), so do oblige!