Purpose of Displacement

The sound of his heavy breathing bounced against padded walls, accompanied by his partner's occasional gasps.

It felt as if there wasn't enough air; like he was choking.
His nails dug into the taller man's skin, his arms wrapped around his back as he was taken, just like every other night.

If he was once curable; if his condition was not a hopeless case, then what could be made of the now?

He felt his lips caressed by hot breaths and an eager mouth. The desire they held was bruising yet not painful.
Fingers tightened around his sensitive flesh, stroking him as an intense heat traveled through both their bodies; restless as it shifted and spread all over and inside of him. He arched into it; taking the man who held him deeper.

His mind filled with nothing but longing and anticipation for more and for release.
It used to be filled with nothing but confusion and disorientation. He used to be so unused to this... however it never bordered on repulsion or hate.
Countless times when he was alone, he found himself wondering if that meant that there had actually been attraction-- if this could possibly be love.

"Ivan...!" he called out, tangling his fingers through the man's hair, nearing the limit.

When he reached it, he closed his eyes tight, burying his face into the man's chest.
After the searing white came the slowly departing tension. His body was significantly weakened; vulnerable.
It was at these moments that he would think that maybe he was disillusioned. Maybe he only withstood all this for the climax it promised.
But then... he would feel the planting of a soft kiss on his neck and his face would be cupped by a warm hand.

"Did you feel it...?" his partner's voice, raspy from exhaustion, would ask, "Did you feel something beyond the sex?"

Placing a smaller hand over the big, warm one on his cheek, he would turn and kiss the back of the man's palm in return, reciting in his mind what he knew would come next.

"Yao, I want to know... if my love got across..."

That was the entire point. That was the only reason.

Love. In a padded cell. In the mad house.

Ivan wasn't even supposed to be in his room. The blond was located in a cell two rooms down where they were currently in.
He was the small asylum's Russian schizophrenic and Yao was the displaced Chinese boy.

He wasn't even qualified to be in this place. It used to be just mild delirium wherein he would talk to his white stuffed cat as if it were sentient... until he was passed around from hospital to hospital and his condition worsened.

Still he stood by his sanity. He questioned it and believed in it.
The boy who came unto him on the third day of his confinement would change all that.

"I've been watching you Yao." he had said when they had come across each other in the corridor. "I think you're very cute."
The smile that came afterwards was innocent. It was a pretty smile, Yao thought.

He knew the boy was named Ivan. Nurses called him that all the time. They never said his last name, Yao never asked and he himself never introduced himself at first; at least not as Ivan.

"My name is Russia." he would say sometimes, "I am the largest nation."
He would say this as they sat in the garden and watched the clouds in the sky. Yao would look at him, trying to read his expression.
He truly believed he was a country.

He's really a lunatic.

Yet after that thought, a chuckle would escape the Chinese boy's lips. Rather than a dangerous man, he saw Ivan as an overgrown boy trapped in a little child's imagination. He was in one long game and he was always playing.
Yao was his playmate.

"If you are Russia, then who am I?" Yao finally played along on the third week. It was a tempting game.

The pale boy looked at him, as if wondering if he was serious.
"You are China da?" he laughed, "How could you forget who you are?"
"Right...how silly of me." Yao shook his head as he plucked the petals off a flower he had picked earlier.

The first time he introduced himself as Ivan was when he had just come back from treatment. It was the first time he had broken in Yao's room.

Sleeping restlessly, Yao opened his eyes to see a figure bent over him, kissing his forehead.
He got up with a start, his heart pounding. Then his heart relaxed when he saw Ivan's familiar face.
The boy looked tired. His hair was unkempt and his amethyst eyes were dull.

"Russia?" he called out.

"Yao..." he whispered, barely audible, "It's me, Ivan."

"Ivan..." Yao repeated. Despite the unsettling sight and the initial shock, he was somehow relieved that the boy finally said his real name... he didn't spout the name of another nation or something equally preposterous.

"Be my friend?" he said, imploring.

He looked hurt. Yao didn't dare ask what kind of treatment was given to him to cause him to regress to such a disturbing state. Instead he pulled the taller man closer into an embrace.
It was an impulse; Ivan looked like a lost kid.

"Of course." he reassured, stroking the man's back and feeling an unfamiliar twitch in his heart as Ivan's arms returned the embrace, pulling him in tighter.

He wanted at first, to get out of the place.
That would be the goal of any sane person who was wrongly sent to a mental hospital.
Regular medications, therapies, solitary confinement and unecessary treatment-- they were all pointless.
He was not crazy and he had no reason to be here.
That was what he thought.

Ivan spent even more time with him after that incident. He would break into Yao's room more often. Mostly he would sleep next to him or leave him a kiss on the forehead or the back of the palm before he stared into space for a few minutes and then returned to his own cell.
Once Yao had asked how he broke the locks. He replied by saying that he had stolen the spare key. The one guard never found out about it and there were no reports of any suspicious activity so the matter wasn't really taken seriously. They left the locks as they were, not bothering to replace them.
There were no cameras, no alarms... nothing stopped him.

"I want to see you." was his reason.

As Yao was pressed down against his mattress, Ivan's lips finally connected with his mouth and not just his forehead or his hand. Whether Ivan was familiar with the act of kissing or it was pure instinct, Yao didn't linger on the thought as he focused on reciprocating.

'I want to see you' slowly became Yao's reason to stay.

Everytime he doubted his emotions, Ivan would say it for him; show it to him.
As they continued to meet, their touches became more intense. They could barely stay in the room together without contact.

"Patient number 10 and 30 seem to have developed an intimacy." Yao overheard one of the two resident nurses tell the head doctor.
"That might be a problem since Patient 10 is showing a significant improvement."

"He'll be able to leave the asylum soon."

Yao felt his head throb.
Since when did the idea of leaving make him feel sick?

Ivan collapsed unto him that night after they came. Their breaths mingled in the small room and minutes passed before anyone spoke.

"If I went away, would you miss me?"
It was a stupid question, yet the urge to say the words persisted in Yao's mind.

Still panting, Ivan's fiery eyes briefly caught his as the man sat up from the bed; the friction lost.
"It's not a matter of 'if' my dear Yao." he breathed out, "They will take you away from here because it's procedure."

Yao shifted from his lying position so he could see Ivan's face.
Of course he knew... he wasn't oblivious. Too often had he mistook the child-like demeanor for ignorance and just as often was he reminded of his misconception.

"You're well. You're not like me, Yao."

It was strange how Yao thought that was the saddest thing. They were not the same and now things would be righted and he would be free. He would be able to live like a normal young man.
He once heard that a bird, despite being able to fly wherever it pleased, was not truly free until it had a home to return to. That was probably why his release no longer felt like freedom.
He could accept this and move on. It's not like he would never see Ivan again. He could visit the asylum and they could still see each other. It's not like it was the end.
As he tried to convince himself, he imagined what he would do away from the blonde and there was nothing but blank empty spaces.
He suddenly felt the desire to feel Ivan against him. He pulled him down into a kiss and it betrayed his fears.

"Don't fool yourself my China." his voice was more childish now. He was Russia again. "I won't let them take away what's mine."

He didn't want to leave Ivan but he didn't want to stay here. It was a tough decision... or so he thought.

"We'll escape." was the simple proposal. "It's easy."

The hospital was small and only had five patients, two nurses, a doctor who only checked in during the day and a guard.
Ivan had planned escape many times but never really brought it into practice. It would have no point to leave. The torment of treatment was reasonable payment for his food and shelter and besides, he had his own worlds to keep him happy.
Outside he was dangerous. He used to kill people and he would wake up soaked in regret and blood that wasn't his. In here he was controlled.
Yao was a plus that ruined the balance.
The scales tipped in favor of everything that had to do with keeping the boy.

Ivan explained their plan of action as his Russia alter-ego like they were allies at war.
Everyone needed to be either knocked out or locked up. Then they would set the place on fire.
Records of patients and evidence would be consumed by flames. Bodies would be charred beyond recognition and they wouldn't even be remembered. No one would notice the two missing orphan boys who escaped the fire because they had started it.
The Russian man was strong and Yao was stealthy. It really was easy.

The carefully-concealed trap door under Ivan's bed held a lot of stolen items. Among the stash they found what they needed: chloroform, scalpels and matches.

Yao attended the private sessions with the head doctor like usual. The man told him of his improving state and his arranged transfer to a better rehabiliation center before his ultimate release half a year later.
Just thinking about it reinforced his determination.

The night before his arranged transfer, Yao sat in his cell, awaiting Ivan's arrival. The lock turned and Yao got up, pulling the taller man inside hastily by his shirt.

"Ivan... tell me this will work." he whispered after they had greeted each other with a long kiss.
"If you want it to Yao, then it can't go wrong."

The nurse on patrol that night finally came. She stood by Yao's door and peeked into the window to see two patients on the bed instead of one. They were lying next to each other, seemingly asleep.
Taking out her key, she opened the door and went in.

"Ivan! What the-- how did you get in here?!" she reprimanded, pulling the Russian up from the bed by the scruff of his shirt. "Get up! We're going back to your cell!"
Scrambling to his feet, Ivan whipped out a white towel and held it over the nurse's face. He placed a hand on the back of her head so she couldn't pull away and he ignored her hands which pushed at his chest.
A short muffled gasp escaped her lips before her arms went limp and she passed out.

Yao, who had just gotten up, helped lay the woman down on his bed.
It was a good start.

They locked her up in the room and proceeded with the remaining nurse at the nurse's station.
Walking up to her casually, Yao called out to her.

"Yao!" she exclaimed. "Is something wrong? Why are you out of your room?" she leaned over the counter, her face worried.
The Chinese boy tried to look distraught. He went on with the distraction as Ivan crept behind the nurse and finally knocked her unconscious the same way as the first.

This time she was locked up in Ivan's cell.

The parking lot held about four gasoline jerry cans the last time Ivan had been able to check. When they pushed open the garage, there were only 3 left but that would still do fine, the mastermind reassured his partner. Hauling in the cans, Yao did his best to spread the contents all over the one-storey asylum. Ivan, on the other hand, got the place ready by turning on every stove and the oven.
Yao was just taking down the two fire extinguishers to make sure they aren't found when the security guard rushed in.
He looked around frantically, not understanding what was going on.

"Officer!" Yao dropped what he was doing, "Help!"
Ivan emerged from the kitchen to find Yao crying to the guard. "He-- that patient! He was going to set the place on fire! I was trying to stop him..."
The guard turned to look at Ivan, ready to pull out his gun from its holster when he felt something stab at his stomach. Yao grabbed his gun and tossed it aside while his other hand went on with the stabbing. Each stab growing in force as the man's blood pooled into his fingers. His scalpel's wooden handle had snapped and he could barely hold it properly.
Seconds later, he was strongly pushed away and he fell to the floor, the back of his shirt getting in contact with the gasoline.
Yao braced himself for the kick to the head that he saw coming. Instead he heard a loud thud and opened his eyes to see Ivan atop the guard. His companion had thrust a scalpel down the man's throat. Ivan was smiling as he watched the expression of pain and the squirting of blood.

It was a different face that Yao had never seen before.
For once he finally understood why Ivan was feared and detested by the staff. He could finally imagine what Ivan had probably looked like before he was committed and when he was still dangerous.
They had successfully locked up his dark side in this isolated place. Now Yao was going to set it free in exchange for the fulfillment of his own selfish desires.
He corrected himself; he had already set it free. There was no turning back now.
Not that he really wanted to...

After throwing the guard's body together with the nurse in Yao's cell, they proceeded outside the building.
Ivan turned to Yao and without warning, bent down to take off the smaller man's shirt.

"Ah, Ivan..?" Yao simply looked at him in wonder, not really protesting.
"Your shirt has gasoline. We better take it off for safety." he answered, balling up the shirt and tossing it inside the hospital through the open front door.

"Here." Ivan held out a folded white cloth in front of him instead. It was a doctor's coat.
He had probably taken it from the doctor's office knowing that they had to get rid of Yao's shirt.
Slipping the coat on, Yao watched as Ivan lit up an oil lamp with the matches. He had seen a lot of the man's different faces now. With every new side that was exposed, he was expecting to be repulsed. Probably the next thing he would find out would finally scare him and drive him away from Ivan; breaking the haze of allure that he felt towards the man.
However, despite all the lunacy, it never came.
In fact it had become the opposite. Now he can say with certainty what he felt. He could now say it without the initial doubt that he held.

He loves Ivan.

They both watched at a safe distance as the building was engulfed by flames. In the backdrop of fire, Ivan bent down to taste his lips. Yao held him closer, wrapping his arms around the taller man as he kissed back; the passion of his confirmed emotions coursing through their tongues and lips.

It was a long hike towards the next town but they both didn't mind.


A/N: Thanks for reading!!! This was supposed to be a Halloween fic, but then it became less and less scary and I didn't know what had become of it anymore. I just wanted to write a short one-shot I guess. -sigh-