A Gravitation Fanfic
N-G Studios was more than a skyscraper. It was a testament to the success of the band that had first formed it. It was home to the top bands of the music industry. And it was where NG president Seguchi Tohma was currently facing off with a pink plushy bunny.
"Yes." Tohma stated calmly.
"No!" The bunny replied firmly.
"Yes." Tohma repeated, his voice firmer this time.
"No! No! No!" the bunny responded diligently.
Tohma sighed. "Ryuichi promised."
"But photoshoots are so boring!"
"The calendar was his idea."
"But why does there have to be solo shots?" Ryuichi stood up with a huff - leaving Kumagorou perched on Tohma's desk.
"Because there's fifty-two weeks in a year and seeing the three of us together fifty-two times would get too repetitive."
"Why couldn't you have done a twelve month calendar instead?"
"We're doing a thirteen month as well, but weekly calendars are a hot item right now. I think we need to take advantage of it."
"Why not stock photos then?"
"Fans are going to buy this expecting new photos. You wouldn't want to disappoint them, would you?"
"Ugh." Ryuichi collapsed on the corner couch.
"You didn't object to the group photoshoots."
"You and Nori were there. Makes it fun. I don't suppose..."
"I have work."
"Ugh." Ryuichi covered his face with a pillow.
"I got Himechi for you. She's your favorite photographer." Tohma prodded.
"That makes it slightly more bearable, but no less boring. Turn left. Turn right. Unbutton your pants. Lighting check. More hair gel!"
"..." Ryuichi peeked out from behind the pillow.
"You have to do it."
Ryuichi puffed out his cheeks, then stuck out his tongue at his bandmate before hiding back under the pillow. "Another day."
",,,maybe there's someone who could come with me."
Tohma frowned. "Not Shuichi. If K catches word of the calendar, he'll rush one out for Bad Luck."
"I wasn't thinking about Shuichi."
Tohma blinked, then frowned. "Ryuichi..."
"That would make things alot more fun."
"Do you know the earful I got after the zoo visit? Mika doesn't want anything like encouragement."
"Because wearing animal mascot costumes at the zoo is so unbelievably sexy?"
"When compared to a calendar photoshoot with Himechi, it certainly is the epitome of innocence."
"He's older now."
"He's still underage."
"I'm not climbing into his pants, Tohma. I just want to hang out."
"He wants in your pants."
"I can handle myself."
"More than that, he wants in your heart."
Tohma studied Ryuichi - who's expression was still hidden by the pillow. "Mika wants to protect him."
"Maybe she's protecting him from the wrong things."
"She'll make me sleep on the couch."
"Isn't doing a favor for your best friend - and one of your most valuable assets - worth it?"
Ryuichi peered out suspiciously at Tohma's cheerful tone. The keyboardist's trademark smile was in place.
"But, Ryuichi, sometime in the next five to ten years, I'm going to ask you for a favor. And to do it would mean you will end up sleeping on the couch. But you'll say yes, because you owe me."
Ryuichi hesitated. Either contemplating the seriousness of the threat, or simply letting it sink in. Then he sat up, offering a cheerful grin of his own. "Okay."
Tohma sighed. "You were supposed to reconsider."
Ryuichi bounced over to his desk, holding out his hand. "Phone number."
Tohma glanced at him suspiciously. "He'll meet you there."
Ryuichi deflated a little, pouting, but Tohma ignored him.
Tatsuha couldn't believe his luck. Even though it meant owing Tohma a huge favor - which was always dangerous - it was still incredible luck. He was going to hang out with Ryuichi. More, he was going to get to watch him do a photoshoot for a Nittle Grasper Calendar. It was a fanboy dream. Or the beginning of one atleast.
He noticed several cars were already there. Just staff? He wondered. Or were one of the vehicles Ryuichi's? He headed into the front lobby, offering the receptionist his most charming smile. "Uesugi Tatsuha." He introduced himself first. Tohma had assured him he wouldn't need a pass of any kind, but he wouldn't put it past his brother-in-law's sense of humour to lie about it just to give him a hard time. "I'm-"
"Yes, yes, you're on the list." The receptionist didn't even spare him a glance. Tatsuha felt slightly insulted after all the effort he'd put into the greeting. "You better hurry - you're late."
Tatsuha blinked at that. "I am?"
"Make-up's been waiting. Hurry up - second door on the right."
Despite feeling a little confused, Tatsuha followed her instructions. He found himself in a warehouse-like room. Lights and cameras surrounded what was currently a blank backdrop. Crew scurried to and fro setting up equipment and checking readings. He approached a woman who had a piece of equipment she was holding in front of her pointed at the lighted backdrop. He wasn't sure what it was. It looked more like something a scientist would use while testing for radiation or something. "Excuse me?"
"Just a minute." She told him. "Okay! All good so far! Let's have props ready!" She shouted loudly. The crew scurried to do as she said, and she lowered the machine - turning to face him. "Lighting check." She said as if that explained everything. "Okay, who are you and what are you supposed to be doing?"
Tatsuha blinked. "Er...I'm Tatsuha Uesugi and-"
"Oh, good - you're here. Listen, not to be a hard-nose, but I don't like it when people are late. It throws off schedule and it's just plain unprofessional."
Tatsuha scratched his head, confused. "Sorry? I caught the earliest Shinkansen from Kyoto I could."
"You were coming from Kyoto? Geez, Seguchi could have atleast warned me. In that case, I'll let it slide. Mori!" There was no space or breath between subjects, or before the sudden shout. She rambled straight through, like someone on a continuous coffee buzz.
A young man came up. "Himechi-san?"
"This is two o'clock. Hair, make-up, wardrobe - the works. Yesterday."
"You got it boss!" Mori grabbed his arm, pulling him to a side room.
"Er. I think there's been-" Tatsuha began.
"No worries! Himechi's the best, and she only works with the best." Mori urged him into the make-up chair, patting his shoulder. "Yesterday, people!" He shouted.
It was the only warning he got before no less than three people surrounded him with make-up brushes, nail files, and hair gel.
"Himechi-chan!" Ryuichi threw himself at the photographer, who neatly side-stepped - sending him crashing to the floor.
"Not when I have equipment, Ryu. We've been over this."
Ryuichi pushed himself up off the floor, and turned a pout and watery eyes on her. "Himechi-chan..." He whined.
Himechi sighed, handing off two cameras to an assistant. "Alright, alright, now."
"Himechi-chan!" Ryuichi reenacted the glomp, clinging happily. "I haven't seen you in forever!"
"Okay, okay, let me breath!" She protested.
Ryuichi let go. "Sorry. Sorry." He grinned. "So, I bought your photobook. It was gorgeous."
"Is it on your coffee table? Do I get bragging rights?" Himechi asked.
"Of course, brag away!"
"You rock." Himechi took her cameras back from her assistant.
"That's how I make my living." Ryuichi smirked.
Himechi snickered. "Get your ass over to make-up. We're behind, but we'll catch up."
"Oh, but I was waiting for someone. Tohma said he'd meet me here. Uesugi Tatsuha?"
Himechi blinked. "I thought your shoot was for the calendar."
"But Tohma said-"
"Hey, all set! Do we have the best crew or what?" Mori's voice broke in.
Ryuichi turned, and froze.
Gel slicked Tatsuha's hair away from his face, and make-up accented his lips and evened his skin tone. A long earring dangled from one ear. He wore a tank, and several chain necklaces. Jeans slung low on his hips and clung to his legs. Chains hung from the belt loops and leather boots hugged his calves. A leather jacked was over one arm. Mori was tugging the reluctant young man up to the group.
Himechi paused as well, studying the transformation. "You make it work, kid. Not bad at all. Eh, Ry-" She cut off when she noticed the way Ryuichi was studying Tatsuha. She'd seen the singer assess models before. There was nothing professional about the way he was looking at this young man. Smirking, she turned back. "Definite potential - provided you come across on film as well as you do in life. Ryuichi there is the bane of my existence. He's the least photogenic of Nittle Grasper."
"Hey!" Ryuichi protested, glaring at her.
"Seriously, in real life Ryuichi is amazing. Motion picture? Fabulous. But still photography? One in ten is good - and that's being optomistic. Ever noticed how many distant shots are in the concert outtakes?"
"Kumagorou Beam!" Ryuichi shouted. The pink bunny promptly beaned Himechi in the back of the head. Himechi clutched the back of her head, but only laughed in response to the attack. "Kumagorou says Himechi is being mean!"
"But I didn't say anything about Kumagorou. He's very photogenic, way more than Ryuichi!"
"Grr..." Ryuichi started to chase Himechi - who ran, though she was laughing so hard she couldn't run very fast.
"Um..." Tatsuha watched them blankly.
"Don't worry, this is normal." Mori assured him. "You have to expect the unexpected when Sakuma-san comes on set."
Ryuichi promptly tripped over a wire, crashing to the ground and making a light fixture sway dangerously. Mori dodged over to hold it up. Tatsuha ran to Ryuichi, pulling him away from the light.
"Ryuichi-sama, are you okay?"
"Look at all the little Kumas. They have cute little wings." Ryuichi said dazedly.
"Oops." Himechi reappeared. "Uh, Ryuichi? You okay?"
Ryuichi blinked to clear his eyes, pausing when he realized Tatsuha had one arm around him to hold him up. A sly smirk slid across his features before he leaned against the young monk. "Ow-ie. My head hurts."
Himechi frowned at him suspiciously. "Funny, I don't see any bruises or bumps."
"Oh, no! Ryuichi! Do you need a doctor?" Tatsuha began to panic.
"No, no!" Ryuichi interjected hastily. "I just need to sit down."
Himechi rolled her eyes as Tatsuha picked Ryuichi up and carried him to a nearby couch.
"Is that better? Do you need ice? A drink?"
Ryuichi let go of him with a sigh. "I just need to rest a minute. Maybe a cool drink would help."
Himechi grabbed Tatsuha's shoulder before he could dash off to get the requested refreshment. "Mori. A glass of water. Relax, kid, Sakuma Ryuichi here is a known drama queen. Stop messing with the kid's head, Ryu."
"You so deserve the joke Tohma played on you. Even Kuma agrees." Ryuichi replied before Tatsuha could jump down the photographer's throat.
"Joke?" Himechi's eyes narrowed. "What joke?"
Ryuichi smirked. "Tatsuha only came here to keep me company. He's not a model. He's Tohma's brother-in-law."
"Huh?" Himechi blinked. "But Tohma said he was sending..." She froze, and pieces of her hair began to fray as angry marks crowded around her. "Damn Seguchi's sense of humour! Oh, I'm so giving him an earful when we talk next!"
"Can someone explain this to me?" Tatsuha interjected.
"Tohma told Himechi he was sending you here at two. He didn't say why, knowing Himechi would jump to conclusions, and set you up for a photoshoot before I arrived."
"Why?" Tatsuha tilted his head, a frown turning his mouth. The long earring clipped onto his ear swung against the curve of his neck and shoulder. Ryuichi watched it, momentarily distracted.
Watching the pair, Himechi smirked. "This being Seguchi, he had layers of reasoning. But foremost is simply the fact that he has a sadistic sense of humour."
"No kidding." Tatsuha rolled his eyes.
"Well, since Ryuichi no doubt needs a few minutes to recover from the trauma of tripping over his own two feet-"
"It was your light cord!" Ryuichi protested.
"And it would be shame to waste my team's hard work. What about it, kid?"
"What about what?" Tatsuha asked, not following her.
"What about doing a photoshoot with me? You're already all dolled up with no place to go, right? I promise it'll be an experience you'll always remember."
To Be Continued...
I know, I should be working on The Price for Loving You. And I am! But this little story refused to not be written. So here it is. Some of you may recognize the inspiration for it from The Price for Loving You. This is where those pictures on Ryuichi's MP3 player are supposed to come from. I just thought it would be cool if Tatsuha got a taste of what the famous people in his life experience. And it would be great if it was connected to Ryuichi, because I love them as a couple. Another piece coming soon! Review, pretty please?