Title : Because Mine is Bigger
Summary : Sometimes, size does matter.
Time-Fit : Before Sweet Titbit.
Disclaimer : I do not own the characters. They and Saiunkoku Monogatari belong to Sai Yukino.
Rating : PG13
Genre : Humour
Warning : Yaoi
Pairing : Kijin/Reishin
"May I be spared from answering that question, Your Highness?"
Ryuki studied his Minister of Personnel. The legendary inscrutable face was of course impossible to read. But were those cheeks just a shade pinker than normal? It could be just the humiliation of being under "detention". Ryuki had kept Reishin in after the morning court session ended.
Half afraid of his usually intimidating Minister, the young emperor stood his ground, his curiosity piqued by the pink cheeks.
"Secretary Hong, is it reasonable to expect me to accept your apology, without an explanation for your behaviour in court earlier?"
The cheeks turned a darker shade of pink.
"No, not reasonable."
Ryuki leaned back, hiding an un-kingly grin.
"Good. Now explain."
Shoka, as custodian of the Imperial Archives, did not attend morning court sessions. That, however, did not stop him from piecing together the salient points of that day's hot topic. One, his younger brother had embarrassed himself by failing to follow the discussion, and giving an answer that had no relation to the question asked. Two, the emperor had requested a closed-door talk with his errant Minister. Three, the yellow robes of the Minister of Finance had been spotted tailing the Minister of Personnel silently, falling back only when favoured with a withering glare.
Therefore it did not surprise Shoka to see Reishin enter the Archives, followed shortly by the yellow shadow. Given the situation, Shoka acknowledged Kijin with a nod, but did not include him in his verbal greeting.
"Ah, Reishin. Can I get you some tea?"
"I think I need to get drunk right now, Brother Shoka!"
"Oh dear. Was His Highness too harsh?"
"No, no, no, he was too gracious! He even went so far as to say it was partly his fault for announcing that the court session would be delayed by forty-five minutes, and following that with a second announcement ten minutes later that the first announcement was void."
Reishin fanned his flushed face vigorously.
"You should have heard him, Brother Shoka! In an oh-so-understanding voice, and nodding sagely, he said that ten minutes is ample time for THAT to happen! And all the while silently laughing at me with his golden eyes!"
Shoka's brows furrowed.
"... for what to happen?"
Kijin, who had crept closer, spoke for the first time.
"Surely you don't need him to say it, Lord Shoka. Reishin and I were alone in his office, and had an hour to ourselves. We made out, what else?"
"Ah so ... and you were interrupted ten minutes later. Oh dear. How compromised were you?"
"Fortunately we were still fully clothed. It's just the unfinished business that was the problem."
Turning to his younger brother, Shoka said in gentle understanding,
"So it was your unfinished business that caused you to be distracted in court? Well, the only person who knows that is His Highness. That's not so bad, right?"
Reishin stomped his foot.
"Not so bad? Which part is not so bad, Brother Shoka? Not so bad that I had to tell the Emperor I couldn't concentrate in court because I was nursing a hard-on? Not so bad that I had to endure the humiliation of being solicitously assured by that snot-nosed teenager that 'it didn't show'?"
Kijin started to laugh, but switched to a hoarse coughing at the glare he received.
Witnessing that exchange, Shoka was reminded of the question he wanted to ask.
"Reishin, how is any of this Secretary Ko's fault?"
"He's a big bully."
They stared after the messenger.
"Five minutes? We have five minutes? That's not enough time to finish!"
"It's enough for just one of us. Do me, Dumpling."
Pressing himself aggressively against Kijin's, Reishin hissed.
"And what about mine? Why yours?"
"Because mine is bigger than yours."
Shoka, shocked into momentarily opening his eyes wide, looked askance at his brother's lover.
"Really, Secretary Ko, that is ... putting a whole new meaning to 'big bully'! What kind of reasoning is that? How is size relevant to who gets done?"
He turned to his brother.
"I can't believe you swallowed it, Reishin."
Reishin blinked stupidly.
And then he blushed, struggling to find the right words.
"You see, Brother Shoka ... um ... the idea might be abhorrent to a straight man like yourself … but for Kijin and I, it's really quite normal, swallowing, that is ... KIJIN! Stop laughing and support me in this!"
Supporting himself against a bookcase, Kijin laughed even harder at the expression on Shoka's face.
"Oh, oh, you are priceless, my precious Dumpling!"
Shoka said gravely.
"I was using 'swallow' metaphorically, Reishin. I meant, how could you let Secretary Ko get away with using size advantage against you. And here I'm using 'size'literally."
The bookcase rattled, causing Shoka to turn his attention to the yellow-robed man hanging from it.
"Secretary Ko, do you mind clinging to a table instead? That bookcase, much like my younger brother, is not built to withstand the overbearing weight of the Ko family jewels."
Kijin lifted his hands off the bookcase, and held them up defensively.
"Whoa, Lord Shoka, I wasn't casting aspersions on the Hong family jewels! I am myself particular fond of that specimen, in fact. As with most miniatures, it's quite exquisite ... "
Covering his face with his hands, Reishin whimpered in exquisite mortification.
"Please Brother Shoka, you didn't hear that!"
"Do you have a point, Secretary Ko?"
"Of course. In the context, Reishin didn't have a meaningful hard-on."
Reishin forgot his mortification.
"I am intrigued, Secretary Ko. What context would that be?"
"The context of being a public spectacle. I wasn't bullying your little brother, Lord Shoka. Size was relevant, especially combined with the fact that my robe is more revealing than Reishin's multi-layered skirts. As our young sovereign so kindly pointed out, Reishin's predicament 'didn't show'. Mine would have been difficult to miss."
Shoka ran his eyes down the length of the yellow robe. Yes, indeed. The slim-cut robe, the soft light-coloured silk, the close-fitting black-belt that caused the tunic to hug the pelvis even more snugly, the ornamental blue ropes that crisscrossed the slim hips … even without a "predicament" to speak off, the impressive carats of the Ko jewels were already discreetly hinted at.
"Granted, but why do you choose to dress that way in the first place? Not that it does not become you, it's just opening yourself to unnecessary embarrassment. The wind does blow strongly, and reveal too much, Secretary Ko, even in the palace grounds."
"Ask your brother. He designed my look, right down to the last detail."
Chuckling, Kijin speculated.
"A well-hung trophy-lover perhaps, eh, Dumpling?"
His Dumpling made a delicate dismissive sound.
"You got the wrong asset. It's to showcase your silky ink-black hair."
Kijin jumped. Angling his body to catch the sun rays streaming in from the Archive windows, he scrutinized his crotch anxiously.
"Does it show?"
"The sun does shine strongly, and reveal too much, Secretary Ko, even in the palace grounds."
Shoka burst out laughing.
"You two make a fine pair! Equally brilliant, and equally dense!"
"Oh, for goodness sake, Kijin! Not everything revolves around your crotch! I was referring to your beautiful hair that reaches to your knees. You wear it loose and down your back. An outfit with too many layers, like mine, would interfere with the flow of your hair. I kept your tunic close-fitting so that your hair would fall in a solid curtain. I was concerned with how well your hair would hang, and not how well-hung you are!"
Reishin paused to roll his eyes.
"The ego of the exceptionally-endowed is excruciatingly embarrassing!"
Red in the ears and convulsing with laughter, Kijin collapsed to the tiled floor in a heap of yellow robes and silky ink-black hair. He reached out a hand and tugged at Reishin's hem.
"Forgive me, Dumpling?"
Shoka cut in.
"You have to, Reishin. You dress him so snugly that he can't hide anything. That makes his predicament higher in priority than yours."
Reishin smiled at Shoka, and then got down on the floor next to Kijin.
"I'm sorry. When I designed your outfit, it didn't cross my mind that your silhouette would warp! Do you want to wear something else?"
"No, I like this outfit. Besides, the clothes make the man, it is said. These clothes make me your man. I want to keep it that way. As for the other issue ... "
Kijin placed his palms on the floor and bowed low.
"... please take good care of my silhouette."
Reishin gurgled and purred.
"It will be my pleasure."
Shuddering at the suggestion in his lover's voice, Kijin whispered hoarsely.
"It's starting to warp right now."
Reishin looked up to ask Shoka sweetly,
"Brother Shoka, may I? There'll be no mess, I promise."
"Rrrrright ... you swallow."
Laughing at his blushing younger brother, Shoka shook his head in resignation.
"Excuse me while I go guard the entrance."
FOR THOSE NOT FAMILIAR WITH THE SAIUNKOKU MONOGATARI FANDOM
(1) The phrase "Shoka, shocked into momentarily opening his eyes wide, ..." is an insider joke of sorts ^_^. In the anime, Shoka is always drawn with crescent eyes. There was only ONE short scene where we got to see his eyes open!
(2) Kijin is a weirdo who wears masks all the time when in public.