Summary: Rihito just finished an exam and then Daisuke called him. Of course.
Written for cairnsy as a yuletide treat.
By Dark Ice Dragon
Rihito had just finished his exams of the year, and he felt fairly good about it. He had been able to answer all of the questions, and he'd finished with a lot of time to spare, using that time to expand on his answers. Bundled up in needless layers, he walked the busy streets, seeing his breath fog up in front of him, slipping past the people who walked alongside him.
He stopped in a quiet area of the city, where there was far less people about and he leaned against a wall, staring up at the stars after pushing his glasses up his nose, his hands stuffed in his pockets. Now that he was done with university for now, he didn't have anything else to do but –
There was the familiar feeling of the collar yanking Rihito off his feet. The road disappeared and between one blink and the next, Rihito found himself face down, arms and legs sprawled all over the place. He could recognise that particular smell of cooking, and the ground he was on top of was also something that he knew quite well. Rihito leapt to his feet and glared at Daisuke, who was looking at him from the corner of his eyes, holding a small plate of food in front of a ginger kitten. Rihito groaned, closing his eyes and rubbing his forehead.
"Can't you think more before you say something?" he growled at him.
Daisuke didn't react much to that, still crouched in front of the kitten, a disinterested expression on his face. The kitten hadn't been disturbed by his yelling either, purring loudly as it ate its fill.
"I didn't call you; I was talking to the cat."
"And our bond doesn't differentiate between who you're talking to!" Did he ever listen? This happened far too much if he did. Rihito was pretty sure that was the same kitten Daisuke had been feeding before, when he'd ended up at Daisuke's house the last number of times he'd been called. "You say 'come here' and my body reacts to that!" It didn't seem like Daisuke was paying him his full attention, petting the kitten in long strokes, turning the plate so that it could access the food easily.
Used to the situation, Rihito turned away and checked that he had enough money on him to get home. "Thankfully I'd just finished my exams," he muttered to himself. Having to explain how and why he'd disappeared in the middle of an exam when he hadn't left the room would not have been an easy thing to do.
"…You're studying?" Daisuke's petting slowed down, and the kitten meowed at him, trying to get him to start again.
He nodded, folding the money back into his pocket. "Of course; being a reindeer isn't my entire life, and I won't allow it to be." Most of his family did, Kaito going so far as to bumping into every single person he could, on the off chance that he would meet his santa. Which had ended up happening, and his brother had never been so happy in his life.
Being happy while being a slave? No, Rihito wasn't going to be that, and he was glad that, while Daisuke forgot himself and ended up calling him, he wasn't that interested in spending that much time with him either.
Daisuke resumed petting the kitten, looking down. "So being a reindeer is really inconvenient for you."
It felt like a vein had begun throbbing in Rihito's forehead when he heard that and he glared at Daisuke. "You're only just realising that now?" He never quite knew when he was going to be called, and couldn't not obey whatever Daisuke said, no matter if he was being serious or not.
"You know more about me than I do about you." Daisuke glared back, dropping his attention from the kitten altogether.
"Why do you need to know about my life?" he snapped, glare intensifying. He didn't want to tell him about his life, but one sentence from Daisuke could have him spilling every single thing that had happened to him.
They stared at each other, eyes narrowed to slits for a few minutes, ignoring the complaining kitten at their feet. Daisuke was the one to look away first, eyes sliding away, sighing and leaning back on the wall. "Fine."
Slowly, Daisuke rose from his crouched position, wiping his hands clean of any food that he'd touched. It didn't really help the unsettled feeling that was beginning to grow in Rihito's stomach, and he watched as Daisuke rubbed at the muscles in his back. "I'll kiss you."
"What?" Rihito screeched, taking a step back. "I don't want to kiss a guy!"
An annoyed look flittered across Daisuke's face, and he turned away. "I don't either, but you've got your life and I've got mine, and this," -he waved a hand to indicate everything that happened between them- "is getting in the way."
Rihito gaped at him, mind twirling in different shapes as Daisuke closed the gap in two easy strides, studying his face the entire time.
He was completely frozen as Daisuke's hand came up to gently lift his chin up and then their lips were pressed together. It was gentle, and it only lasted a second before Daisuke pulled away again, taking a step back, holding his own wrist up to inspect the dissolving rein.
And Rihito could feel it dissolving, could feel his knowing of Daisuke being right there in front of him just disappearing. And – and, this isn't what he wanted. He didn't want to be a slave, didn't want to be a reindeer, but Daisuke had never treated him as such, had always treated him like a person, even if they just never seemed able to get along.
Then, the connection was completely gone, the reins becoming tattered strings before breaking apart and winking out of existence in front of their eyes. They stood there in silence, both looking at where the reins used to be.
"I… should be leaving then," Rihito mumbled, not understanding his thoughts. Shouldn't he be elated that he was no longer Daisuke's reindeer? So why was he feeling so lost? It was like a part of him had gone missing, and he had no idea where to look to get it back. Which was ridiculous, because he'd lived his entire life without Daisuke, so it wasn't like this was going to be any different from what it used to be. But that was before he'd been a reindeer for someone.
"Yeah," Daisuke said, just as quietly, moving out the way.
Taking a step forward, Rihito's mind was still trying to process what had happened, and he didn't look at where he was going. So he didn't notice that the kitten, no longer getting the affection it wanted from Daisuke, had begun wandering over to him. As soon as he felt the slight resistance, Rihito's eyes widened and he twisted around to make sure he didn't hurt it.
And fell into Daisuke. They hit the ground with a crash.
Rihito ended up on top of Daisuke, his head around Daisuke's chest area. Between one breath and the next, the reins reformed around them, and Rihito relaxed at its presence, feeling it curl protectively around his neck. The heavy feeling in his stomach lifted, making him feel lightheaded at the suddeness of all the change happening to him.
"Rihito… get offa me – you're heavy," Daisuke groaned under him.
Scowling, Rihito got up, eyes trailing over and following where the rein connected from his neck to Daisuke's wrist. "I am not."
"Whatever," Daisuke said, hauling himself up and scratching at where his rein rested. "You staying for something to eat?"
He grimaced, taking a tentative sniff of the air. There was the smell of food, and it seemed like it could be recogniseable as something. "Did you cook it?"
"Yes, I did."
"Then I'd better make sure its edible."
Together, they went inside, bickering all the way.