Yes, I bring to you all another kink meme fill that I just finished and am very proud of. Enjoy!~

When Tom Tanaka heard the small, distracted greeting on the other line, he was surprised when it sounded choked and wet. The topic he had been about to bring up to him was suddenly forgotten.

"Shizuo, are you okay...?"

A loud sniff, a throaty cough, and a barely audible swallow. A few seconds' pause, and then, "Yeah... I'm fine."

But, as it happened, Shizuo Heiwajima was not fine.

It had all started a month ago. Shizuo's boss had, much to his displeasure, relocated his office, and the former bartender turned debt collector's bodyguard was now forced to take a different route on his way to work. It was a part of town that he had never known very well, so his first time through was like making a new friend: he'd warm up to all the awkwardness and strange encounters eventually.

Each morning started off firsthand with a cigarette drawn between his lips, a flick of the lighter, and a pull back as he sat on the edge of his bed to stare out the window and get accustomed to the view of both of Ikebukuro's Sunshines. He remained in his sleepwear, which consisted only of a pair of worn grey sweatpants, until the urge hit him to finally get up and move. Each morning, he would trudge the kitchen, make a simple scrambled eggs breakfast, and head out clad in his brother's black and white gift and sunglasses coolly adorned. Each morning, as he stepped out of his apartment building, a new cancer stick moved in to replace the old one.

The only break in routine was this new course to his boss's office. Why he still had to trek there when he could just meet up with Tom, he never knew. The new route was anything but relaxing, as he was always on edge and finding new things he would rather not have discovered.

Each morning, Shizuo would grab a cup of coffee on his way to work, loaded with enough sweetener to kill two elephants, and find the office with a decreasing amount of difficulty as the days went on.

It was the first night of this new routine that brought about the curt conversation with Tom over the phone, but Tom never brought it up afterward.

The walk back to his apartment is not a short one. Shizuo stops on occasion to catch a breath and counterproductively light a new cigarette, taking those few moments to absorb the novel, foreign surroundings. Not like it's a bad part of town – in fact it's almost endearing, now that he thinks about it; sorta reminds him of where he grew up – but what irks him is that it's on the outskirts of Ikebukuro and, unfortunately, those outskirts happen to be neighbors with the outskirts of Shibuya. Shizuo has to remind himself that there is a stick of nicotine and filters in his mouth before he tries to bite down in his anger. He shoves his hands back into his pockets and forces his legs to keep walking.

And that's when it happens. A few sounds emanate from somewhere above, prompting Shizuo to crane his neck up. The tune is so faint that it takes him a couple of moments to realize that it is music, floating out from the window above. The soft taps of piano keys remind him of raindrops, the steady triplets ringing high on the keyboard while a lower set keeps a seamless yet effervescent melody. Just with the first few notes, Shizuo's anger is forgotten, swept under the floorboards with the key, melting from him as he absently remembers that it's stupid to still be wearing his sunglasses at night and puts them in his front pocket. The music is traced to its source: a window a good four floors up, only the raised edge of the glossy black piano visible from the sill, and the shadow of a figure swaying to the light, somehow mournful rhythm.

As if it's not fingers that play this melody but falling tears.

The music swells to a more mezzo forte passage, far more passionate and rubato as Shizuo finds himself closing his eyes. In his inner mind, the refrain mimics the image of thousands of droplets creating ripples in a pool of water. Never in his life had he thought that a piano could elicit such a sound and provoke an array of emotions all at once, each and every one of them tugging an individual string at the blond's heart, pulling him toward the notes that now hang in the air. Their breath is still ever present, he clings to the echo that is slowly fading in his head, and probably for the first time in all his life Shizuo finds himself without words.

But he smiles, because he needs none.