A/N : A Christmas giftfic for azhrarn_vazdru on LJ.

Shameless fluff ;)

The Information Broker Who Came In From The Cold

Of all the nights for Shizu-chan to be late home from work, it had to be the night where a relentless rainstorm left Izaya shivering outside the blond's apartment door, both questioning Shizuo's parentage under his breath and wondering why he was foolish enough to come here in the first place.

Because, really, 'I only come here to come here, Shizu-chan' might have worked the first two dozen times, but now… it was possibly wearing a little thin.

Shizuo – bless his simple little protozoan mind – had even gone to the trouble of giving him a key, but Izaya never liked using it. At least if he knocked on the door and Shizuo answered, or didn't as the case may be, then it could remain a take-it-or-leave-it sort of arrangement. Letting himself in, waiting, smacked far too much of a conscious desire to be here, that he actively chose to be in Shizu-chan's company of his own free will.

But the ootoro was burning a hole in its take-out box, he was drenched through from the rain, and, well… if he didn't want to be here, then he'd be elsewhere, ne? With any luck, Shizu-chan would be too dense to notice the difference.

It was less a criticism of Shizuo himself than it was a scathing judgement on apartment building construction to grumble at the temperamental heating system, but Izaya decided to blame Shizuo anyway. Judging from the way the heating unit had been 'installed' high in the wall, it certainly looked like Shizu-chan's throw-shit-and-see-where-it-lands handiwork, except the unit that spluttered as he cranked it up looked about twice the blond's age.

Replacing the chair he'd had to borrow just to the damn thing to turn it on, Izaya considered the possibility that he was only bitter because Shizuo could probably reach it.

No. Not at all. Besides, bitter is such a protozoic thing to be…

He'd cheerfully helped himself to the best of Shizuo's admittedly sparse selection of towels, his coat hanging off the end of the curtain rail next to the heater to make best use of it, and the ootoro lovingly placed out on a plate when Shizuo's keys rattled in the front door.

And he'd just been about to beam "Go~od evening, Shizu-chan!" because it was funny to watch the blond growl and fuss in an attempt to cover how startled he was, when he heard the blond's voice through the thin door.

"It's not much, but… well, you're only gonna be here one night, right? And you're hardly gonna be paying attention to whether my couch matches the carpet."

Izaya froze, one piece of tuna stuck in perpetual limbo between the plate and his mouth. As wide as it felt, gaping with surprise at the fact Shizu-chan actually showed enough initiative to bring someone home who wasn't him, Izaya could have shovelled the whole plate inside. As the key scraped in the look, door handle turning, his gaze darted around the room as if some magical escape route would suddenly emerge, lit by pixie dust and hewn by unicorns.

This was why he hated letting himself in. Because there was no way to disguise how horribly domestic this was; one of Shizu-chan's towels draped around his neck, his stuff drying on the blond's rickety heater, his food on Shizuo's kitchen counter.

And damn it, he didn't want to see this. Shizu-chan could bring anyone he wanted home, but—

Che, what am I saying? No he can't!

Leaving his food on the counter, he marched over to the door, discarding the towel and letting his sweater hang coyly off one shoulder. Whatever Shizu-chan had dragged home, he could guarantee it wasn't this good.

"There you are, Shizu-chan…" Eyes fluttering closed, he slunk against the entryway wall as the door opened, fingertips that were still a little oily from the tuna tracing a flirtatious line down the side of his neck, stretching the collar of his shirt even further. "Do you know how long I've been waiting here for you to—"

When he cracked open his eyes – slow, sultry, with just a hint of "all fucked out" drowsiness – Shizuo was standing alone in the entryway, his coat shiny with rainwater, hair plastered into his eyes. Eyes that looked more than a little puzzled as they stared at him.

"Huh." Shizuo said after a moment. "I was gonna ask what you were doing here, but I guess you already told me, so…"

Yanking up his shirt, Izaya marched right back to his tuna while Shizuo shook off the rain and began unzipping his coat. "That was…" Okay, there was no unembarrassing way of saying that was because he'd heard Shizuo cooing sweet nothings at, apparently, the blond's imaginary friend. "That was just teasing, ne?"

"Tch…" Shizuo shook his head, tucking something against his chest as he shrugged awkwardly out of his coat while still holding onto whatever he carried. "Well quit that. You coulda made me drop him."

Izaya blinked. "Drop…?"

Kneeling to untie his shoes, Shizuo let the bundle he carried spill from his hands. It unfurled in a matted little ball of fuzz, shaking itself out as it took one tentative step into the apartment before meowing plaintively and running back to tangle around Shizuo's ankles.

"It's a cat."

Well, he thought it might be, under the rain and dirt. A tiny, ratty black and white cat. But still. A cat. Not some random competition. Not someone else who might have caught Shizu-chan's eye.

"You think?" Shizuo looked up at him, deadpan. "Man, all those years of school weren't wasted on you, huh?"

"Okay, let me rephrase." To keep from twirling happily in place, which would be mortifyingly unpleasant. "Why do you have a cat?"

"It was raining," Shizuo shrugged, evidently realizing after ten seconds in which all Izaya could do was stare expectantly at him that that was no kind of answer at all. "Someone dumped him by the park. He's been sitting there all day, and I kept telling myself that if he was still there when I was done with work I'd take him home for the night. He was, and it was raining really hard, so…"

Izaya giggled. "Shizu-chan's such a sap."

"So?" Shizuo bristled, toeing off his shoes and hanging up his rain-slick coat, herding the kitten further into the living room. "Just 'cause I didn't wanna think of the little guy sitting out there on his own all night, doesn't make me…" He narrowed his eyes at the way Izaya couldn't quite stifle his laughter. "Tch. Fuck you, I'll be a sap if I want to be."

"No doubt." Izaya tilted his head, lips pursed thoughtfully. "Still. It's good that you found a friend who's on your same intellectual level, ne?"

Shizuo glared at him, picking the little vermin up in one large hand and cradling it to his chest as he padded into the living room. The kitten seemed pleased with that arrangement, nuzzling a snivelly looking little nose into Shizuo's bow tie and purring loud enough that Izaya could hear him way across the room. Granted, Shizuo's place wasn't very big, but the kitten still had to compete with the rain drumming on the window and the low hum of the space heater.

"I'm not gonna keep him," Shizuo said, one index finger scratching under the kitten's chin. "Just figured it wasn't the sort of night to leave him out there by himself."

"So what do you intend to do with it?" Izaya returned his attention to his tuna. Something about the gentle look on the blond's face as he petted the kitten was difficult to watch. "Maybe it was thrown out for a reason, did you think about that? Maybe it's diseased." He made a face. "Or maybe it isn't housebroken. No one will take it off your hands if it's not house broken, at the very least. And no one keeps cats in the city anymore unless they're indoor cats, ne? You'll have to take it to the shelter."

When he looked up, Shizuo was sprawled on the couch, the kitten gnawing at the edge of his collar. He wasn't sure he'd exactly describe the look in those caramel eyes as amusement, but it came close enough.

"Isn't there someone else's parade you can go crap on tonight, flea?" Shizuo picked the kitten up carefully, setting it down on his lap. Before he'd even withdrawn his hand, the scruffball was back attacking his bowtie. Shizuo didn't seem to mind that much. "Or am I just the lucky bastard?"

"The latter, obviously." Izaya nodded, helping himself to some of his long-awaited ootoro. "Plus it was raining, and you've just admitted you don't like leaving cute things outside to suffer in the rain, ne?"

"Cute?" Shizuo snorted. The kitten started, backing up on the blond's chest, tiny back arched. "Sorry, didn't mean you…" Smiling, he smoothed the ruffled fur with one large hand, inclining his head towards Izaya. "Just meant that not-cute bastard over there who's stuffing his face without even asking if you're hungry, huh."

Instinctively, Izaya picked up his plate from the counter. "It's not having my ootoro if that's what you're thinking."

Shizuo looked at him, big brown puppy-dog eyes at full million watt beam. It was the expression he didn't even think the blond realized he made, and Izaya had no intention of cluing him in. Shizu-chan when he wanted something was insufferable enough already.

"…No!" Izaya clutched the tuna possessively. "This is people food, Shizu-chan. For people! Not for fleabitten strays. Or the cats they pick up on the street."

"Tch, fine."

"If you're so concerned, why don't you get some actual cat food from the convenience store?"

Shizuo narrowed his eyes. "Right, like you won't just throw him out the window or drown him in the bathtub while I'm gone."

Izaya wrinkled his nose. "Well, your little friend could do with acclimatizing himself with the bath. I can smell him from here."

And evidently, the little interloper could smell his tuna just as well. Padding over, it sat neatly at his feet, little scruffy pipe-cleaner tail curling decorously around its butt as it looked up and meowed.

"C'mon, you can spare like… one piece till I get groceries in the morning. He's tiny, he's not gonna need much."

With a deliberately oblivious smile, Izaya popped a tender piece of tuna into his mouth, chewing slowly to savour the taste.


Shizuo arched a brow. "You're all heart, aren't you?"

"Not in the slightest." Izaya shook his head, making a show of fluttering his lashes at how good – orgasmically good, Shizu-chan-does-that-thing-with-his-finger-and-his-mouth-at-the-same-time good – the tuna was. "And unlike you, I know the difference between useless animals and creatures deserving of expensive ootoro."

Besides, to a protozoan like Shizu-chan, that meow was an innocent 'please, mister, spare just a piece of your delicious looking tuna!' Izaya, on the other hand, knew it for the 'I'm gonna take your food, then I'll be sleeping in your bed, and then he'll be giving me all his undivided attention instead of you, so enjoy that tuna because you'll be scraping around in garbage cans yourself by the end of the week' threat it truly was.

You can try, kitty-cat.

Clearly he had the better staying power, because it only took a few minutes for the kitten to shuffle dejectedly back over to Shizuo, meowing timidly until the blond reached down to pick him up again.

"Gotta feed him something, though."

"You decided to adopt it, you can give it your milk."

"Oh." Shizuo brightened. "Yeah, I can. You like the sound of that, little guy?"

Izaya arched a brow. "'Little guy'? Why not go all out and call it Fluffy or Mittens or Mr. Tiddles?"

"Dunno." Shizuo winced as he stood, peeling off a kitten who'd decided to cling to the front of his shirt by its tiny claws. "Didn't seem right to confuse him like that if I wasn't gonna be able to keep him."

"Ah, you say that now."

"Nah, I can't." Shizuo laughed a little at the way the kitten skidded on the faded strip of linoleum that delineated the kitchen from the rest of the living room. Opening the fridge door, he leaned in with a shrug to retrieve a carton of milk. "Can't keep him cooped up in here all day, even if I was allowed to keep pets."

The kitten, clearly understanding that opening fridge doors meant getting something, wove dangerously around Shizuo's ankles as the blond picked up a small bowl from the side of the sink and filled it with milk. Izaya picked at his tuna and pretended he didn't notice the way Shizuo smiled every time the kitten meowed. When he set the bowl down, the kitten almost upended it with its enthusiasm, splashing one small paw into the cold liquid in its eagerness.

"He's going to make a mess," Izaya observed idly.

"So do you," Shizuo glanced up, something dark and warm flickering in his eyes. "I figure if we can clean that up, a little milk won't be a problem."

Izaya turned his attention back to his ootoro to hide his blush, listening to the bowl scrape along the lino from the kitten's efforts to lick a hole in the china.

"You think that'll be okay for him?" Shizuo flicked a concerned gaze to the clock on the microwave. "I could probably make the convenience store before it closes. Otherwise I'm gonna have to go all the way to the twenty-four hour place…"

Yes, sometimes Izaya thought that if Shizuo actually realized how well he played the world with this little boy lost charm, they'd all be screwed. Shizuo already had far too many hangers-on for his liking; the concept of Shizu-chan doing this on purpose and all the consequences it would entail…

Huffing out a breath, Izaya rolled his eyes, breaking up a couple of the biggest slivers of tuna into smaller pieces that might be the right sort of size for a tiny mouth. Tipping them into the lid of the take out box, he set it on the floor next to the milk. As joyously as the kitten trampled the near empty bowl and dove energetically at the tuna, it seemed his 'well, it might not even be hungry' theory went out of the window.

"There, happy?"

Not that he needed to ask. That same soft expression was back in Shizuo's eyes, almost too tender to stare at directly without getting burnt. Or was that the sun? At times like this, Izaya wasn't sure he could tell the difference with a hundred percent accuracy.


"Well, can't let Fluffy-slash-Mittens-slash-Mr. Tiddles starve, now can we?"

Shizuo shook his head, arms folded across his chest as he leaned against the counter. "We could just call him Kitty."

"Hmm." Izaya nodded. "Very imaginative. Unless you're going for some sort of existential Breakfast at Tiffany's 'I can't give him a name or call him anything but Cat because no one can own another living creature' thing…" At Shizuo's puzzled look, Izaya sighed. "Never mind. I forget your closest brush with culture is the mould growing in the bottom of your refrigerator."

"I have no idea what you're talking about," Shizuo shrugged, leaning down to pick up the empty saucer and the now rather soggy take out box. There didn't appear to be a trace of tuna left, but the kitten latched one tiny paw into the side box anyway when Shizuo started to take it away. The blond relented with a chuff of laughter, and the kitten went back to happily alternating between biting and licking at the cardboard. "But I'm not not giving him a name for any reason like that…" Shizuo sent him a slow smile as he turned to ditch the bowl back in the sink. "Right, flea?"

"Oh?" Izaya folded his arms across his chest. "So the cat and I are merely your possessions, ne?"

Shizuo shrugged, grinning, herding Izaya back against the counter with little more than a lazy roll of his hips. "If the collar fits, huh?"

"You really think you can collar me, Shizu-chan?" Izaya's arms looped around the blond's neck as Shizuo's hands braced against the edge of the counter either side of his waist. "That's quite the commitment for a protozoan to make."

"Commitment? Tch…" Leaning in, Shizuo's lips grazed the side of his neck. Izaya shivered, nudging a little closer. "I gave you a spare key, what else d'you want, a ring?"

"Well," hands threading into the raindamp hair at the nape of Shizuo's neck, Izaya closed his eyes as he smiled, "you could have made more of a thing of it, ne? 'Here, take this 'cause I'm tired of having to answer the door for you all the time' is both unsexy and unromantic."

"You're kidding, right?" Shizuo's mouth tracked hot and teasing along his jaw, teeth latching in a slow, drawn-out nip on his lower lip. "I gave you a key to my place. D'you know how hard it is to trust you haven't fricking sold it to gun runners or let some gang trash it, or bought the building and had it flattened, or—"

Maybe part of the reason he took control of the kiss was because Shizuo's mouth was made for far better things that baseless, defamatory accusations about Izaya's good character. But the rest was that he didn't need to hear Shizu-chan finish that thought. Because he had handed over the key. He had left his home wide open to anything Izaya chose to do with it.

Shizuo growled softly against his mouth as Izaya slanted his lips across the blond's, savouring the wet warmth of his tongue as slowly and indulgently as he had the ootoro. But where the tuna was salty, Shizuo was always sweet, in ways no monster had the right to be. Sweet and hot and open, willing to go along with anything Izaya decided he wanted.

Apart from the concept of his own non-existence – and that was less fear as it was the thing was just too ridiculous to accept – Izaya didn't think anything much frightened him. Shizuo's blind, almost desperate trust was the thing that came closest.

I'm no one you should trust, Shizu-chan. I don't particularly think I'm someone I should trust most of the time.

Shizuo's hands slipped from the counter to slide into the back pockets of his jeans, as Izaya tightened his fingers in the blond's hair. Moaning inarticulate pleasure into the kiss, he arched against the warm, solid weight of Shizuo's body, hips shifting of their own accord, and—

"Ow!" Shizuo jerked back with a pained hiss. "What the fuck…?"

For a second, Izaya wondered what he'd done. He couldn't think of anything. He'd been so careful after that incident where he'd forgotten to fold his knife properly and it had been open in his pocket when he'd tugged Shizuo down on top of him on the couch….

But Shizuo wasn't looking at him. Instead, the blond's grimace was aimed directly at the little black and white interloper currently latched around his leg and, by the looks of things, using his thigh for a scratching post.

Limping off, Shizuo cursed under his breath as he tried to detach the kitten that had embedded its claws in his leg and wasn't letting go without a fight. Sighing, rueing the moment that had been well and truly wrecked, Izaya shoved away from the counter, deciding the least he could do was provide running commentary while the blond struggled to free himself of his new friend. Struggle being the operative word; the tension to not be rough vibrated through every muscle as Shizuo took slow, steady breaths, carefully dislodging one tiny paw then the other, never noticing that as soon as he shifted to the next one, the kitten clamped the other three even tighter.

"I hope your shots are up to date, Shizu-chan. If it's drawing blood I'm not sure whether I'm more concerned about you or the poor cat."

"Shut up, it's—"

From Izaya's vantage point, the sudden yowl those tiny lungs emitted was the "hey, what are you doing spoiling my fun!" kind rather than the "Ow, you're hurting me!" kind, because he could barely remember the blond's fingers moving that gently when they touched him. Shizuo froze at the sound anyway, unable to tell the difference. Personally, Izaya thought that the way the kitten was trying to hold on even tighter and didn't want to let go spoke volumes, but there was still an aching sort of nervousness in Shizuo's voice when he looked up with a forced smile.

Well, there went Shizu-chan's good mood…

"Uh… can you help me out? I can't see where he is and I don't wanna…" The smile faltered a little.

"Ah, wait, his back paw is stuck…" It was a convenient excuse to grope Shizuo's ass under the pretext of 'helping'. "There, all better."

Holding the kitten up more tentatively than he had been when he hadn't been thinking about it, Shizuo shook his head with a wry smile. "See? All the more reason I shouldn't keep him."

"Oh, of course. I'm sure all domestic animals ha~ate being pampered with expensive tuna and being allowed to gleefully wound their masters less than an hour into their relationship."

"Dunno." Shizuo sent him a sidelong look. "You did it less than ten seconds into it."

"Only because you hadn't spoiled me senseless beforehand." Izaya shrugged. "Obviously."

"Right…" Shizuo laughed a little, letting the kitten wriggle from his hands to make its way delicately up along his arm to his shoulder. Manoeuvring a little stiffly towards the couch, he bent over backwards until the kitten finally decided that the pillows were probably more comfortable and easier to shred. "If I'd known, I'da given you the flyer for half-price sushi I had in my pocket."

Izaya tilted his head. "Really?"

"No not really." But at least Shizuo was laughing now, watching the kitten knead the couch cushions before settling down to groom. "Shit flea, how am I supposed to remember what I had with me that day? All I really remember about it is you."

Oh, there it went again, that unabashed honesty he genuinely had hated from the start, because he knew what it did to him.

Needing to change the subject before he did something utterly humiliating – and throwing himself at Shizuo surely qualified as that – he rooted around in the pile of papers and old TV guides that had been left out to be recycled.


Shizuo looked up as Izaya flung a week-old newspaper at him. "What's this?"

"Kitty-chan's litter box, ne? Because I still doubt he's housebroken, and you are not bringing that grubby thing to bed. You'll have to keep an eye on him."

"Oi, it's my fricking bed." Shizuo scowled. "You ain't kicking me out of it over a cat."

"Fine." Izaya nodded. "Then when he pees on me in the middle of the night, you won't object if I gut him and skin him and make myself a nice pair of cat-skin gloves for winter, ne?"

"Tch…" Shizuo glared, but there was enough genuine alarm in his eyes to confirm he'd taken the threat as seriously as it was intended. "Okay, fine. I'll watch him out here. But still…" And there it was, that dripping-with-sex smirk, the one that curved Shizuo's lips in a way that drew far too much attention to them. "If you're in there and I'm out here, it means you've kinda had a wasted trip, huh?"

"Not at all, Shizu-chan." Izaya shrugged nonchalantly. "All I wanted was to get out of the rain, remember? And anyway, you're a terrible bed hog. I never sleep properly when I'm with you."

That smirk melted into something even more sinuous. "That's sorta the point, flea."

"Well, if you miss it so much, you know what you can do." Izaya glanced pointedly at the kitten. "You brought it home, you could always put it back where you found it."

And in the second that Shizuo's smile faltered, Izaya knew without hesitation that the blond was considering doing exactly that. For him.

Che… who ever said you had the right to be such a decent monster, Shizu-chan?

"I'm joking," he waved it off with a dismissive flap of the hand. "I have an early start tomorrow, wouldn't have let you get all caveman on me anyway."

He didn't, but Shizuo didn't know that. Shizuo didn't know that one of the only things that had seen him through a day of dull meetings, boring clients, and the sort of jobs that occasionally made him question whether humanity truly needed love or some kind of natural Armageddon that wiped ninety percent of them out, was the thought of coming here and having Shizu-chan fuck his brains out. Or vice versa, he wasn't particularly picky.

Or maybe he did know, because Shizuo suddenly found watching the kitten grooming its little ears demurely with one tiny paw unduly fascinating. "Yeah, but… you were waiting, so…"

"Well, then." He shrugged carelessly, turning for the bedroom. "I won't mind waiting a little bit longer, ne?"

"Oi, flea."


The breath knocked out of him on a quiet gasp as Shizuo pinned him back against the doorframe, ravaging his mouth with a kiss so sweetly aggressive that Izaya felt his knees buckle under the assault. Heat danced down his spine as his body arched against Shizuo's, static charged and magnetized from chest to thigh. Fingers trailed down his arms, leaving sparks of sensation in their wake, and he moaned under the kiss, shameless in his demands for more.

He was still all but humping thin air when Shizuo let go far too soon, stepping away with a wicked smile before turning back towards the couch.

"Sleep well, Izaya."

Sleep well… che.

The first time Izaya woke up after barely twenty minutes' slumber, he blamed Shizuo's uncomfortable bed. The second time, he decided it was either the draughty window or the fact that the blinds didn't block out enough of the ambient neon-tinted light coming in from the street.

The third time, after rolling over to check the time on his cell and realizing it was precisely seven minutes since the last time, he grudgingly admitted to himself that the only problem with Shizuo's bed was that Shizuo wasn't in it.

Kicking off the sheets, he sighed at the ceiling; there really was no hope left for him.

At least the rest of the apartment was still warm, the still-falling rain doing the job of insulating the heat when the building's exterior walls didn't. The shimmering light through the half-shuttered window illuminated the choice Shizuo had made instead of sprawling out in bed with him.

Shizuo was tall enough that he looked uncomfortably cramped in his own bed sometimes. Izaya may or may not have contributed to that with his tendency to take over two thirds of it for himself. On the couch, Shizuo was folded almost in half, head pillowed awkwardly against an armrest that hadn't been padded for years, knees bent up. One arm was draped across his chest, where the kitten lay curled up happily, while the other hung limply at his side, fingers brushing the floor.

"I know I've probably called you a knuckle-dragging protozoan, but you didn't have to take me literally, Shizu-chan…"

Shifting the ashtray Shizuo had left on the floor out of the way with a grimace, Izaya knelt next to the sleeping blond, watching the kitten's whiskers twitch animatedly as it dreamed.

"You're dreaming of my tuna, ne?" he murmured mildly. "Little homewrecker."

The kitten didn't open its eyes, just stretched out small round paws as it made itself more comfortable on Shizuo's chest.

He supposed it was sort of cute. If you liked scruffy strays who were all legs and huge eyes and a calculating charm they passed off as a happy accident of nature.

Resting his chin on his hand on the edge of the couch, he flicked one fingertip against a soft little triangle ear, watching it twitch. After the third time, a paw came up to swat him away, but somewhere between intent and action, the kitten decided it was just a ploy for more adoration. Chirping a soft purr, it rolled onto its back, fluffy tuna-rounded stomach bared for more petting as it watched Izaya upside down. Scratching a finger under one stretched out chin, Izaya laughed softly at the way the purring grew louder, the kitten arching into contortionist-like positions just to make sure it didn't stop.

"Oh, you like that, ne? I'll have you know I'm good at finding the places on your wannabe owner that make him purr too…"

As if to prove his point, he leaned back a little on his heels, free hand reaching up to brush a fingertip along Shizuo's jaw. The blond twitched just like the kitten had, nose wrinkling in a sleep frown, the fist dragging on the floor fluttering ineffectually.

Apparently the kitten was nothing more than an attention seeking hussy who didn't care which one of them was doling it out as long as all the love came its way. Rolling over onto little paws, it kneaded Shizuo's chest as it stood to nuzzle Izaya's hand, rubbing the side of its face against his palm hard enough that it was half-sprawled on Shizuo's shirt.

"Hmm, does Shizu-chan know you're flirting with me?" Izaya shook his head, stifling a laugh as the play the kitten made for him sent it sliding on a chubby little ass down over Shizuo's chest and disappearing between the blond and the couch cushions. Scooping the kitten up before it decided to use its claws to hike back up, Izaya tapped one fingertip lightly against a little black button nose. "Che, you're as clumsy as he is…"

"Nah…" A hand curled against the nape of his neck, tugging him up into a drowsy kiss. "Have you seen me chasing you? I'm a million times more clumsy. He…" Shizuo inclined his head to where the kitten sat innocently, watching them with huge jade eyes as though its graceless tumble had all been part of its master plan. "Kinda reminded me of you."

"Me?" It was hard to frown disdainfully with soft, sweet lips nibbling his. "I'm not a cat."

"Well, you're prissy as fuck, you love tuna, you take over my fricking bed when you sleep…" He felt more than saw the smile that brushed against his mouth. "You purr when you get your belly rubbed."

"Ah, you forgot the most important part, Shizu-chan…"


"I always land on my feet."

And so would the kitten, he decided, as Shizuo drew him into another kiss. Even if he had to take the feral little fleabag in himself and allow Shizu-chan visitation rights. For reasons he could comprehend all too clearly, the kitten made Shizuo happy. So obviously, it stayed.

But it stayed out here.

Lips clinging as he broke the kiss, he got to his feet and held out a hand. "Come to bed."

Ever charming, Shizuo yawned. "You wanna fuck now? What about your early start?"

"Who said anything about fucking?" Izaya shrugged, strolling back towards the bedroom. Although he couldn't deny the appeal of the idea, mostly he just wanted to take a leaf out of the kitten's book and curl up against Shizuo's chest and go to sleep. "How am I meant to hog your bed when you're not in it?"

He heard Shizuo laugh softly, and the mild chirped protest of the kitten as the blond stood and placed it back on the couch. Stretching the crick out of his spine, it wasn't the kitten on the receiving end of that ridiculously tender look in Shizuo's eyes when Izaya paused at the door and turned back.

"Couldn't sleep, huh?"

"It's awful." Izaya grumbled. "I'm more tired now than I was when I went to bed…"

"And the couch broke my spine. So…" Tugging off his shirt as he stalked closer, Shizuo leaned down to brush a kiss to Izaya's bare shoulder as he led the way into the bedroom. "How about we make it an extra early morning, huh?"

Smiling at the blond's back as Shizuo sprawled face first onto his bed with an appreciative groan, Izaya nodded. "I can live with that."

He left the door ajar though, just in case the nameless hussy on the couch woke up and found Shizuo missing and proceeded to wake the entire building with its caterwauling. Glancing through the crack in the door, he couldn't help but smile slightly.

Nestling into the body heat Shizuo had left behind, the kitten curled itself into a tight black and white ball, one small paw reaching out to flatten the tufted fur of that scruffy tail that tickled its nose. Tiny ears drooped a little as it fell asleep, closed eyes barely even visible in the black mask of fur over its eyes. It probably would be pretty cute once he got it scrubbed clean and brushed out.

Turning back to Shizuo, laughing softly at the way the blond's eyes were closed too, breathing deep and steady. He mumbled something ungracious as Izaya climbed back under the sheets and into the warmth of a strong, sleepy embrace.

First things first though, he decided, cheek pressed against the lulling thud of Shizuo's heartbeat, the blond's breath ruffling his hair, the kitten was going to need a name.

And 'Flea' just happened to be taken, thank you very much.