I Count The Days by Aqua

I slam the apatto door behind me when I enter. I'm in a royally bad mood. Sparks tend to fly when I'm around Shuichi's bandmate, Hiro. However, this time, his words actually upset me. Usually, I just let them flow off of me like the idle threats that they are. This time, although I did not show any outward reaction, the words left me breathless.

"It will only be a matter of time before he figures it out," the red-head had been saying to the keyboardist.

The quick look that the youth cast me was enough evidence that they were talking about myself and Shuichi. Unlike Hiro, he lowered his voice so that I wouldn't overhear the reply.

"When Shuichi finally figures out how badly he's being mistreated and leaves him, of course. It is only a matter of time before it happens."

I had been waiting for Shuichi, having somehow promised to give him a ride back to the apatto.

As it turned out, Mr. K had wanted to keep him late, so he couldn't come home with me anyway. Not only had it been a waste of time, I had the guitarists words echoing in my mind.

When I first met Shuichi, such comments wouldn't of bothered me in the least. Although I desired him, he annoyed me to no end.

Then, despite my rational mind telling me I was being a fool, I slept with him. I'd never thought I would ever sleep with a man again, muchless willingly. However, that night, I couldn't refuse him. Just as I couldn't say no when he moved in, asked me about my past, and asked me to stay alive for him.

I don't know how he gained this power over me, or when. Maybe it was a consequence of fucking him? Maybe, it was because, the first time he said he loved me, it wasn't clouded by anything. Not even passion. It had simply been three words which he uttered to describe his affection for me. I don't know who was more shocked at the time.

I haven't returned the words. As much as I hate to admit it, he has become the most important person in my life. Yet, I can't tell him or show him my returned feelings. On some occasions, I have wondered why. I am not enough of an idiot not to know that what I feel is love.

For a long time, I have wondered about the reason for my actions. Hiro's words have been echoing around my brain, to the point that they don't make any sense.

I let my body fall to the couch, absently sucking on a smoke. The realization was enough to make my knees weak.

I've been waiting. Counting the days until Shuichi finally gets fed up with me and leaves. I can't help but believe that it will happen eventually. He doesn't ask me for anything, not even money or sex. He doesn't need me for anything, so why would he stick around? I can't help but wonder when he'll come to his senses.

I never thought a time would come when I would actually fear him leaving me. When I would think of a quiet apatto, being able to sleep in, and be able to stretch out over the entire length of my bed, it scares the shit out of me. I know that it shouldn't, but I can't keep the reaction down.

What would it be like to come home and have noone to great me like an enthusiastic puppy at the door? What would it be like to wake in the middle of the night with no warm body next to my own? No reassuring snore in my ear?

I know that I treat him badly, but I am unable to give him what he needs and deserves. One day, he will realize this and I'll be left alone.

Time seems to go by at a snail's pace. I attempt to break from my thoughts by working on my book. However, I've smoked almost half a pack, finished seven beers, and typed exactly three words by the time Shuichi explodes into the apatto.

That is the only way to describe how he comes home. Really, it is the only way to describe how he does anything.

I watch as he kicks off his shoes and, since my office door is open, races toward me babbling a mile-a-minute about practice and how bad he feels about having to stay after I came to pick him up.

"Are you unhappy here?" I ask, cutting him off mid-apology. I hate myself for asking, but the question is pulled out of me before I can stop it.

Shuichi looks confused at the question. "Why, do you think we should move?" he asks, looking around my office.

The innocence of his response causes me to laugh a little, unable to help it. Even if he answered the wrong question, it was still a response to my own.

Still, Hiro's words haunt my mind. "Are you happy with me?" I ask quietly, half-
hoping that he won't hear my words of insecurity.

Shuichi is quiet for a moment, then launches himself into my arms with a enough force that my chair threatens to topple. He wraps his arms around my waist, burying his face into my neck.

"I love you, Yuki! As long as I can be around you, I'm happy," he says to me.

I run my fingers through his pink hair, digesting this information. "I don't treat you well," I point out.

I feel Shuichi shake his head. "It doesn't matter. You can be mean sometimes, but I know that you love me. You show it in small ways. I know that you don't mean to be cold to me. That is just how you are."

"You sound very sure of yourself," I comment.

Shuichi's head jerks up to look at me in surprise. We stare at each other for a long moment, silence between us. Although I'm certain that my expression has remained blank, he suddenly smiles and kisses my nose.

"I am sure," he replies, letting his face bury into my neck again.

Holding him close, I don't let my relief from his answer show in any other way. Still, I think he knows. For the first time, I don't find myself wondering when he'll decide to leave. Although I'm certain it won't take long for my worries to make themselves known again, for now I can hold him in my arms and believe that he'll stay forever.