I am SO SORRY, this is looong overdue! For the past however-long-it's-been I've been moving into college and adjusting to my new home for the next four years! You guys get a much longer update to reward y'all for being so patient with me ;w;

This part is actually a complete rewrite from what was originally posted on LJ. I was very unhappy with what I wrote before, and I'm still not really that satisfied but what's here is much better than what I had. Apologies, and hope you enjoy! *kissus*

Shizuo flopped onto the bed as soon as Izaya left. Who knew being healthy again could turn out to be so exhausting? He peeled away the bed covers and laid himself down without pulling them back over, letting the cold dry him off, and folded his arms under his head.

Something was up with Izaya, but Shizuo couldn't quite put his finger on it, though Izaya seemed to have gotten over whatever cold or flu he'd had. But he'd seemed jumpy and almost embarrassed. Maybe he wasn't used to suddenly coming to good terms with the one person he used to hate most, or that he had gone for a few terrifying moments with the notion he was dead.

Speaking of which, Shizuo still had to tell him about that.

What had happened?

…Maybe Izaya wasn't used to having guests.

Yes, that was probably it. Who knew if Izaya had any real social skills, or if he'd ever had any experience inviting someone into his home, especially– wait, what if Izaya was scared of him? Was it possible that he thought, with Shizuo's regained strength, he might actually attack him?

No, Shizuo knew he wouldn't, not after all they'd been through. But Izaya must've thought it true. He decided, then and there, that he'd stay awake, waiting until Izaya got out, to clear everything up.

He waited…

and waited…

and grew restless…

…and lost his patience…

Izaya was so distracted that he almost walked into the shower stall with his clothes on. Letting them fall to the floor in a heap, he stepped in carefully, until something washed over him that almost made him stagger–

…oatmeal cookies?

How much had the brute used?

Once the water began to run down his back, Izaya put his hot forehead to the cool tile, making him hiss at the contrast. Why the hell had he offered to bring him home? Stupid stupid stupid… And now he had to face all the constant reminders that, once upon a time, they'd slept together. Consensually. (Well, maybe not totally on Shizuo's part, but no one was tied up or screaming.) It didn't help that Shizuo's "death" had completely torn down all the walls he'd so carefully built around himself; his vulnerability now reduced him to a stuttering mess, like a teenage girl meeting Hanejima Yuuhei in person.

He still couldn't believe how toned Shizuo had remained even after all those days being bedri– stop that.

Izaya washed his hair with what was left of the oatmeal cookie shampoo, and was starting to rinse it out when he heard a noise outside the bathroom door.

"Shizuo? …Is that you?"

Izaya barely had time to collect himself before Shizuo burst into the bathroom and pinned him roughly to the wall with his hands cupping his face. Protests died on lips that were now melding with Shizuo's, and it wasn't long before they were both kissing frantically enough for Izaya to shiver against the cool tiles and grasp onto his neck as if to cling for dear life. His fingers soon found Shizuo's hair, and he grabbed and tugged, coming away with nothing and constantly going back for more.

Shizuo began to move against Izaya as those large hands, calloused yet smooth, roamed his body up the shoulders and down his sides. Izaya moaned into the other's lips and raised a leg to drag up the back of Shizuo's calf as slowly as he possibly could. He melted in Shizuo's grip, however, when the blond's tongue found the roof of Izaya's mouth. Gripping tightly onto Shizuo's arms, he tilted his head away.

"Sh-shit… hah…"

Izaya had a faint notion that Shizuo was acting entirely on instinct without experience, but his instincts were damn good. Shizuo attacked his neck first, nipping and sucking at Izaya's throat before gliding off to the side to kiss the junction between collar and neck. It was when he reached the informant's ear that Izaya turned to putty in his hands. Shizuo's lips and the tip of his tongue traced the outer shell and dipped inside teasingly, and at that Izaya's mouth dropped open in a low moan, brows knit together in pleasure, as Shizuo caressed the small of his back with one hand and raced down his abdomen with the other.

He inched forward, face to face with Izaya, and placed a tiny kiss on his lips that made him hold his breath in anticipation. Shizuo placed a hand on his cheek, running his fingertips through the shorter strands of raven hair near his ear, which was still sensitive and made him tremble from head to toe.

"What is this?"

"Hm?" Shizuo seemed distracted, eyes to his lips rather than his eyes. Izaya squirmed.

"Why are you…?"

Shizuo shrugged, then succumbed to his own desires and licked Izaya's lips, which had pursed shut on reflex in resistance. "I'm helping you make up for all those times you didn't visit me."

Shizuo craned his neck to kiss him again, tongue running over teeth and tasting him through and through until they parted to catch their breath.

Words filled with a combination of wonder, awe, and rapture as if Shizuo had just realized it himself, he whispered,

"Izaya, I love you."

Vermillion eyes grew wide in an instant.

The informant moved his lips, but with nothing coherent to say, no sound came out. Finally, his face turned bright red in embarrassment and utter disbelief.

"I… I don't know… if this is the time to–"

"I don't care. I want you to know it."

"But Shizu-chan, this isn't–"

"Then what is the right time?"

"Not in the shower!"

Shizuo stared at him sincerely with big, determined chestnut brown eyes. "But you love me too, don't you?"

It felt as if those eyes held him shackled. There was nowhere to run, nowhere to hide, no masks to find that could rid him of this situation because he knew that, deep down, he wanted it this way. Corner me, don't let me run away, please

Shizuo began to concede, sighing. "Knowing you, I know it's not easy for someone like you to open up–"



Izaya blinked a few times, keeping his gaze lowered just enough so that he was looking anywhere other than Shizuo's eyes. "Y-yeah. I… I do. Too," he added quickly. Saying much more would only further kill what little pride he had left. Couldn't Shizuo just get what he meant instead of making him spell it out?

But suddenly Izaya looked up to see a big, goofy sort of grin on Shizuo's face. His eyes narrowed. "What are you smiling about?"

"Just kinda… makes me happy." He laughed, letting it bubble from his throat. He glowed with a quiet exuberance that Izaya had never seen before tonight.

Izaya put his forehead to Shizuo's. The grin was still plastered on that stupid face, and it would take a lot to make Izaya admit that it was a little infectious.

Was this why he was so happy to see him alive again?

Shizuo leaned forward, raking fingers through dark locks on the back of his head, pulling him up-

and then Izaya put his finger to Shizuo's lips.

The blond raised his eyebrows in surprise. Red eyes flickered like the flame of a candle, drawing to a gentle close as he put his forehead back onto Shizuo's. He breathed in deeply. His nose brushed against the other's.

Shizuo waited.


Izaya's chest shuddered, voice hovering softly.


His voice returned, slightly awkward and more of a question than anything.

"I… admire you…"

A 'snrk' sound came from the back of Shizuo's throat before he suddenly burst into laughter. Izaya frowned, waiting for him to catch his breath and for the shaking to stop.

"It's not funny…"

"But it's cute. I'll get through to you, in time. Small steps."

They spent the next few seconds just breathing, lips ghosting over one another as Izaya's words washed over him in a way that made him almost sigh happily. A chuckle bubbled up from his throat, bringing a smile with it, and he took the informant's face into his hands and kissed him gently.

"Thank you."

"What for? I know it took a bit of courage and self-humiliation on my part, but–"

"For saving me. More than once."

"But what about all the times I've hurt you, and you've hurt me?" His brows furrowed. "Our past isn't something we can just forget. We've come too far for that."

"Then don't try to forget it. Can't we accept this change and grow from what we were?" Shizuo massaged Izaya's temples with his thumbs, caressing them in soft circles. "I'm sorry, for everything. I owe you."

"You've got it all wrong," Izaya said in an almost snarky tone. "I'm the one in debt. But maybe I can consider us even, for now."

It was that edge in the raven's voice that had Shizuo nearly shuddering from how much it turned him on in ways he never knew it could. He'd missed it, the way he managed to press all his buttons— this time, for a different reason entirely.

"You're soaking," Shizuo just realized.

"Speak for yourself, idiot. Now I'm gonna have to find you fresh clothes."

"You're the one who had the shower on."

"You're the one who burst in here and put yourself under the water! The shower was on first!"

"Hmm, stretching out your clothes will be fun."

"That's it, I'm sending you home."

"You've gotta have something that might fit me."

"Won't even be able to get my pants over your ass, one of my shirts will be more like a bra."

"You're exaggerating."

"Oh, my imagination is running wild..."