Pure sap and kissing errywhere.
Happy New Year?
'tis the season
i - Sunny
It takes Komatsu a second to notice the little sprig of green seemingly hovering in thin air over his head; not just because it's, well, hovering, but because Sunny has him backed against a wall, hand positioned above his shoulder to let Komatsu know this is exactly where Sunny wants him and he's not getting away until the bishokuya lets him go.
Not that he's particularly interested in getting away, and there's nowhere to go besides. They're on a private balcony of one of the many towering restaurants in Gourmet Town, so high that the city's noise is blanketed beneath a softly gusting wind. The stars are out full force tonight. It's cold enough that Komatsu's breath mists in front of his nose, but Sunny is warm and close and the hair coiled around his hands is doing a decent job of trapping his body heat.
Sunny leans over him, blocking Komatsu's view - probably for the best, since he can't get unsteady about how high up they are if he can't see - and he looks lovely in the golden glow of the candles illuminating the room behind them. Komatsu is trying to guess if this is going where he thinks it's going when Sunny lowers the plant between them and smirks.
"You know what this is, Matsu?"
Waxy, pointed leaves, small red and white berries, tied neatly with a pretty blue bow… "Mistletoe?"
"Mmm, that's righ'." Sunny moves the sprig up again, and this time Komatsu follows its progress with his eyes, which is why he doesn't notice there's suddenly a lot more hair wrapped around him, not only on his hands now but pressing against the back of his neck, tightening on his waist and under his knees, lifting him clear of the ground.
Komatsu yelps in surprise, and then there are sweet-smooth lips on his and long fingers under his chin to hold him in place. The kiss tastes of wine, is slow and deep and luscious, and Komatsu sinks into it, cups Sunny's cheeks in his palms. Wispy strands of hair map the planes of his face, sweeping across his forehead and eyes to touch curiously at the join of their mouths, but when the ticklish sensation gets too close to his nose, Komatsu jerks back in time to sneeze into the crook of his elbow.
He underestimates just how much of a hold Sunny has on him.
The Heavenly King sets him down a little harder than he probably meant to, the colorful hair Komatsu sneezed all over whipping around unhappily. "Ugh," he groans. "That's so disgustin', Matsu!"
Smiling sheepishly, feeling really very guilty, he can only apologize. "Sorry, Sunny-san."
ii - Coco
There is mistletoe hanging from the ceiling of Coco's home, right over the table, though Komatsu supposes 'hanging' isn't an accurate way of describing it. The poor plant looks as if it's been hastily forced into a gap between the stones that the circular building consists of, a panicky last minute addition.
Komatsu writes it off at first, thinking the mistletoe a mere holiday decoration even though the rest of the house is bare of adornment. But eventually he notices the way Coco keeps stealing glances at it as they talk; his eyes flick from the sprig to his steaming tea, from the ceiling to the table as he pulls the bandages from his head and drags his fingers through his hair, and, just once, from the mistletoe to Komatsu, rubbing nervously at the bridge of his nose.
When Coco's uncharacteristic restlessness continues, Komatsu can't help but smile despite his own uncertainty, imagining Coco pacing as tries to decide whether to put the mistletoe up or not and just deciding to go for it in the end. Komatsu fiddles with his own cup as he wonders what to do. He knows, logically, that Coco's hesitancy probably stems from living alone for so long, but he can't stand the thought of misreading the situation and being politely rejected.
"Mistletoe," he says, tone conversational, quietly observing the way Coco goes very, very still at the word. "Such a great tradition, don't you think?"
"Ah, I suppose." Coco slowly sets his cup back on its saucer, and now Komatsu is being watched in return.
"It's like a special chance," ah, he can't stop grinning, "for someone who might not have the courage otherwise. Right?" Komatsu wets his lips with the tip of his tongue. When Coco's gaze drops to track the movement, he stands up, intending to join Coco on the other side of the table.
He doesn't get that far; Coco shoves his cup out of the way and actually climbs onto the table, knees scraping across the wood as the bishokuya reaches out to pull Komatsu up with him. Komatsu lets him, too shocked to do anything else, straddles Coco's thigh and opens up to the pressure of Coco's mouth on his.
Then it occurs to Komatsu they're making out on a table, frantic and handsy like teenagers, and he laughs and laughs and can't stop, turning the kiss into something messy, and when Coco starts laughing as well they give up. Komatsu buries his face against Coco's shoulder to wait out the giggles.
He does pull away when Coco suddenly twitches in his arms. Apparently Coco hadn't wedged it in tightly enough; the mistletoe has fallen, landing unerringly on his head. The dumbfounded expression on Coco's face sets Komatsu off again, and he plucks the sprig from dark hair, letting it drop to the table.
Komatsu eventually subsides into hiccups, blushing and clapping a hand to his mouth to muffle the embarrassing sounds. Coco just smiles and brushes a kiss across his forehead.
"Merry Christmas, Komatsu-kun."
iii - Zebra
Komatsu doesn't know who decided to hang mistletoe from lamp posts around the city, but seeing so many couples exchanging kisses on the sidewalk is curious. They're either very young or very old, he's noticed; teenagers stopping beneath each large bough to kiss and laugh and run off to the next, and elderly men and women, who've likely been together since before Komatsu was born, enjoying the comforts of a lifelong partner.
He thinks there are normally more, but most people seem to remember some urgent business that requires their immediate attention when they catch sight of the man accompanying Komatsu today.
Zebra walks at his side, taking up most of the path - people would be forced into the street or up close to the stores in order to pass…not that anyone came near enough for that - which is actually quite useful, since the sidewalks are packed this time of year and Komatsu tends to get pushed around. He's small and easy to miss, after all. It's taken some getting used to, having stares filled with fear and awe aimed in his direction when he's out with Zebra, but Komatsu understands. There's nothing to be done about it at this point anyway. Zebra's reputation as a first-class danger is too widespread, even though he's really not so bad (in Komatsu's experience, at least). The bishokuya has actually been pretty well-behaved today; Komatsu only had to stop him from beating on someone twice.
So Komatsu ignores the wide eyes turn their way as they wait on a street corner for the light to change. But he hears girlish giggling, too, which is not a sound Komatsu normally associates with this particular King - Coco, perhaps, but not Zebra - and when he looks around for the source, Komatsu spots three young women smiling behind their hands. One sees him looking and points upward, winking.
There's…ah. He and Zebra have finally ended up underneath the mistletoe. The giggling briefly increases in volume, though the women fall silent when Zebra glares at them.
Maybe the holiday season is getting to him, but Komatsu feels young and just a little bold. "Will you pick me up, Zebra-san?" he asks, because he doubts Zebra is willing to bend down for him. Not in public, at least.
"Huh?" Zebra stops glowering at their rapt female audience to frown at Komatsu instead. "What for?"
"I want to try something. Please?"
He's expecting Zebra to scoop him up in his arms like Toriko might, but the man fists the back of Komatsu's jacket and lifts him like that, the way a mother cat would hold a kitten in her mouth. It's not the most comfortable position in the world. Komatsu sighs and pulls himself closer to Zebra anyway, leaning forward to place a quick, soft kiss on his cheek.
Zebra jerks Komatsu back but doesn't put him down right away. The women are giggling again, and Komatsu almost wants to join in, because Zebra's face is turning very, very red.
"You're getting really fucking cocky, kid," he growls, but there's a breathy edge to it. Rather than feeling threatened - Zebra blushing is unexpectedly adorable - Komatsu finds himself trying to steal another kiss. He manages two more (one on the crooked part of Zebra's nose, one on the corner of his scowling mouth) before Zebra drops him (gently).
The women are almost hysterical with laughter. Zebra steps forward as if he intends to take his embarrassment out on them instead of Komatsu, but then the light changes, the flashing white man telling them it's safe to cross. Relieved, Komatsu grabs Zebra's hand and tugs until the bishokuya follows him into the street.
Komatsu doesn't dare let go until they're only a few blocks from his apartment. But as his grip on Zebra's fingers loosens, they wrap around his own, holding on just a little too tightly.
iv - Toriko
Feeling nervous while cooking for Toriko after so long is ridiculous. Komatsu knows that - he also knows it isn't really cooking Christmas dinner for his partner that has his stomach in knots and his hands fluttering aimlessly. No, the preparations are going as they usually do; it's the box Komatsu hid under his couch that has him so distracted.
He'd seen it while out shopping for ingredients and hadn't been able to resist. Candy mistletoe, perfect for his particularly gluttonous bishokuya...and easy to write off as a joke dessert if things don't work out the way he hopes they will.
Komatsu bites his lip and refuses to think about what's in that box, or whether or not he'll be able to work up the courage to do anything besides silently handing the package to Toriko. He's far braver than he used to be, and he certainly has more confidence in himself than he did before meeting Toriko, but all of that can be attributed to his partner. Funny how the changes he's so grateful for are failing now Komatsu is trying to turn them to the man who brought them about in the first place.
There's just so much at risk. If Toriko rejects him, he stands to lose not only his closest friend, but his partner. The thought of being separated from Toriko now is an impossible one. Komatsu doesn't know what he'll do if Toriko ever comes to hate him.
In the back of his mind, Komatsu is aware he's being overly dramatic. Toriko won't leave him because of this.
He's relieved when loud banging startles him out of the morbid direction his thoughts are taking. No room to be sad on Christmas, after all. Komatsu pads quickly down the hall and opens the front door before Toriko can knock again; he's half expecting there to be cracks on it.
But he forgets to check when Toriko grins down at him, reaching out to ruffle his hair in greeting. Just that simple, affectionate touch calms Komatsu completely. Even if their feelings aren't entirely in sync, Toriko does like him rather a lot. It's enough.
"Hello, Toriko-san," he says, moving back to make space for his partner to step inside and shutting the door on the cold evening. His apartment is nicely warm, both from the heater and the ovens he still has on to keep dinner at the right temperature. Toriko hums in a pleased sort of way and shakes snow from his hair. "I hope you didn't have any problems getting here."
"Nah. The streets are almost empty. Everyone must already be wherever it is they need to be for Christmas."
Komatsu instantly regrets not asking Toriko to come earlier. He'd thought the bishokuya would be bored, cooped up here (his apartment isn't exactly huge) with nothing to do but watch Komatsu cook, but now he feels like he missed a chance to curl up beside his partner and share in the warmth, maybe sip hot coco as they discussed their next hunt...
He sighs, and Toriko gently bumps his arm against his shoulder. "You okay?"
"Ah, yes! I'm fine." Komatsu straightens up and smiles at Toriko, determined not get distracted. They can still do those things if he convinces Toriko to stay late.
Toriko nods, sniffs the air, then takes a deep, deep breath. "It smells damn good in here, Komatsu."
Of course it does. He's been cooking all day, and now the scent of delicious food has permeated every inch of his apartment. Even Komatsu, with his ordinary nose, can smell it from down the hall. He can't begin to imagine how great it must smell to Toriko, who can pick out the little nuances - the bishokuya probably knows exactly what they'll be eating already.
Komatsu leads Toriko to the living room, gets him settled on the couch, and then ducks back into the kitchen for drinks. Quiet warning bells start going off in his head; he frowns, and it takes a moment for him to realize what the problem is. Toriko on the couch. Toriko's enhanced sense of smell. And the candy mistletoe, which he put...under the couch.
He grabs the wine and two glasses and runs back out into the other room, skidding a little on the carpet. Foolish to put it there, but he'd been hoping making it easier to pull out the mistletoe whenever he wanted would bolster his courage. And now Toriko has the box open in his lap, sniffing curiously at the molded red and green candy inside.
"Sorry," Toriko says, grinning and not looking the least bit apologetic. "I was wondering why there was a tasty smell coming from under the couch."
"I. That's. For d-dessert." Komatsu's pulse is pounding in his ears.
"But why keep it here?"
Komatsu opens his mouth and shuts it again, unable to think of a reasonable explanation for why something that should have been in the kitchen is instead beneath the furniture. Toriko cocks his head slightly and looks Komatsu over, surely taking in his flushed cheeks and white-knuckled grip on the wine bottle. But rather than make a joke and tell Komatsu to bring out the food already, Toriko smiles and gestures Komatsu over.
Komatsu goes, silent as Toriko pries the bottle and glasses from his hands and sets them on the floor, as his partner pulls him down to sit next to him. Toriko drops an arm around his shoulders, draws him close, and plucks one of the shiny berries with his free hand.
"You don't mind eating dessert first, right?" he asks, and when Komatsu shakes his head Toriko presses the ball of candy to his lips.
A tart cherry-apple flavor bursts across his tongue. Komatsu rolls the candy around in his mouth, trying to get more of the taste; it's too hard to bite, but that just means he has to let the flavor come gradually. He blushes when he notices Toriko is watching attentively, thumb rubbing at his jaw and eyes fixed on his mouth. Komatsu isn't sure what he means to do.
"Suck it a little," Toriko suggests. Komatsu does so, blush spreading to his ears and down his neck. "Good. Wait, wait! Don't swallow. Now hold still..."
Toriko kisses him. Komatsu nearly chokes on the candy in shock, but his partner is patient, waiting for him to relax before urging his lips apart. With their mouths sealed tight, Toriko chases the berry until he traps it against Komatsu's cheek, dragging it across his tongue in a vibrant line of sugar as he leans away, taking the piece of candy with him.
He doesn't go very far, staying close enough to nudge his nose against Komatsu's as he takes his time tasting the treat. There's a string of saliva connecting their lips (Toriko had told him not swallow, and Komatsu shivers when he realizes his partner has just gotten a large helping of Komatsu's own flavor) and Komatsu licks at it, giggling when Toriko gives an indistinct murmur of approval. He brings their mouths together again, passing the candy back, and it's all very wet and sloppy and surprisingly enticing, and he doesn't mind even though there's spit smeared on his chin, especially when Toriko laps it up like it's wine instead of candy-stained saliva.
They pass the sticky ball back and forth until it's so small Toriko accidentally cracks it with his teeth. Laughing, Toriko moves the mistletoe out of the way and lays down on the couch, settling Komatsu on his chest as they kiss again and again until there's no sweetness left and they've rubbed all the red coloring from each other's tongues.
Komatsu is shaking a little; he's never been kissed so thoroughly before, and even Toriko is flushed, eyes soft and dark. When Toriko slides his mouth across Komatsu's throat, biting carefully, he groans, hips shifting restlessly as Toriko's hands find his ass.
Then Toriko's stomach growls. Loudly.
"Sorry," he says, chuckling, though he manages to look genuinely sheepish this time. "Everything smells so great and you taste good - I'm really hungry."
"It's okay, Toriko-san. I'm pretty hungry myself." Toriko sits up, and Komatsu settles in his lap for a moment before swinging his feet onto the floor, nearly knocking over the bottle of wine. He grabs it, surprised when there's no condensation; they've been kissing so long the bottle is warm.
Komatsu starts toward the kitchen to trade it for a new one and bring out the first course, but he's stopped by an arm curling about his waist. Toriko has the mistletoe dangling between his fingers, above Komatsu's head, and Komatsu smiles as his partner steals one last kiss.
Toriko puts the mistletoe back in the box and sticks it under the couch again.
"We'll eat the rest later." He winks, and Komatsu laughs and throws his arms around Toriko's neck and hugs him, holding on as tightly as he can.
A/N – Shame I didn't didn't finish these in time for Christmas. Boo.
Last fic of 2011, oh gosh.