Bubble pop

"Humph… This really sucks."

"Really? I fid moments quiet moments like this with you quite pleasant, Battler~ Pu ku ku…"

"S-shut up!" Battler snapped, face turning red- perhaps a little predictably so- as he angrily splashed a mountain of soap suds in Ronove's face.

That damn demon butler deserved it, he really did. It was bad enough that he made fun of Battler all the time anyway, b-but in a situation like this

Useless, it was all useless!

Battler glared at nobody in particular, face still colored with embarrassment, as he folded his arms against the rim of the bathtub. The porcelain was cold under his bare skin, which was still damp and running with rivulets of warm water, in a manner that made him shudder slightly and his skin prickle.

Resting his head on his arms, Battler muttered, "…If the hot water in this place is so damn limited, the why couldn't I have shared a bath with one of those cute, big-boobed sisters instead? That'd be a lot better. Tch…"

Ronove smiled at Battler's bad mood and laughed softly to himself. This, of course, only made Battler pout more.

He was sure those cute sisters wouldn't laugh at him.

Not like that.

No… they'd probably just complain that he was taking up all the space in the bath (not likely, given how big it was), and then they'd stake him to death. The water would turn red. Then, nobody would be able to use it to get clean, and even more warm water would be wasted.

Of course, it would somehow all be twisted around so it was his fault.

At least Ronove wasn't temperamental enough to murder him on a whim.

He had that to be thankful for, right?

But the sound of his annoying laugh wasn't helping matters.

Che… …

Well, this was a pretty damn awkward situation; being in a bath, naked, with another guy. Granted, that was only to be expected, give it was a little difficult to have a bath at all with all clothes on… but whatever…

Was this arrangement one of Beato's ways of trying to screw around with his head, or did it have something to do with those very odd 'romance' books he'd caught Virgilia reading a few days before?

Who knew, and who the fuck even cared?

To Battler, he wasn't all that worried about how he got into this situation.

He was more worried about what would happen now he was in this situation.

It was making his skin crawl.

"Stop laughing at me," Battler snapped. "In case you haven't noticed, being too lost in your own amusement, this is a pretty weird situation and- H-hey, what are you-uu… aaahn… …"

It seemed, by this point, Ronove had tired of acting the part of a gentleman- a role that he fulfilled half-heartedly whenever Battler was around anyway. Ronove was far more given to invading personal space and light insults when he was with Battler; and he had admitted, when Battler asked, that being around him made him feel a little more childish than usual.

Beato had then gone on to explain that everything about Battler was so unimaginably ridiculous, from his hair to his stupid way of wandering about with his hand in his pocket, that it could have an actual impact on a person's intelligence.

Battler soon shut her up by throwing a piece of Ronove's strawberry cheesecake in her grinning face. He admitted it wasn't one of his wittiest comebacks, but the sight of Beato, the 'proud Golden Witch', with her eyes wide with surprise and her cheeks covered with cake was worth it.

Even Ronove had been unable to stifle his laughter at that.

…Come to think of it, that had happened only yesterday.

Now that Battler pieced all the evidence together, he got a pretty solid impression that the cake-throwing incident from earlier was the cause of this awkward situation right now.

Beato was trying to punish him for his disrespect.

She was doing a pretty damn good job, too.

That damn witch loved tormenting Battler, but she really couldn't take a joke herself at all.

She must've known that Ronove, despite his guise of a gentleman, would be unable to take his hands away from Battler when presented with him, completely naked. Yeah, that damn bitch must've been watching his whole awkward scene right now, an ugly smile on her face, laughing.

Ronove… was massaging Battler's shoulders.

His grip wasn't too firm or too soft; it was just a steady pressure, that slowly worked out the knots of stress that had been developing in Battler's tensed muscles throughout the fourth game, and…


Creepiness aside, and trying to ignore the fact the person pressing their fingers against his bare flesh was Ronove, i-it felt… r-really kind of nice…

With a small sigh, Battler arched his back into the gentle, soothing touches; unable to keep himself from emitting a small, breathy moan.

His face flushed light pink.

Suddenly, the water that sluiced about his thighs seemed a lot hotter, whilst the porcelain bath tub was even colder- a sharp contrast that made him shiver.

"Y-you… damn bastard…" Battler hissed.

His words contradicted his actions completely. He was still pressing himself, almost subconsciously, against Ronove's fingers. In the end, he only said them just to have some vague feeling of control over this already impossible, unmanageable situation.

Aaah, if Ronove kept touching him like that, he…

"Pu ku ku~ You really are complaining a lot, Battler… regardless of the fact we have done this kind of thing a few times in the past~ In fact, I do believe you were the one to initiate it at first?"

Battler gasped. Those fingers were still pressing into his wet skin, gently smoothing out the tension that had been building up inside him during his mind games with Beato, and-

"A-aahn! F-fine, t-that… i-it feels pretty good, okay? I-it'd feel nicer if it was one of those sexy sisters but- but… aaaaah… D-do that again… just there…"

"Hm?" Ronove tilted his head to one side, smiling softly. "Have I, perhaps, found a weak spot?"

"Y-yeah, yeah… whatever. You can stop gloating, everybody has weaknesses like this, right…? It's not that incredible… Just don't tell Beato about it…"

"I would never dream of it. I find this side of you incredibly endearing, Battler; I have no real desire to share it with anybody. Pu ku ku…"

Battler glared. Of course, the glare was directed at the white tiled floor of the bathroom, given his back was facing Ronove, so it was quite pointless- but that didn't matter. It made him feel slightly better, damaged pride aside.

"S-shut up. Shut up and just keep… doing whatever you're doing, okay? I-I don't want to think about it too much."

"You'll only get a headache?"

"Heh. Being with you is a headache enough as it is."

"My, how rude. But I will certainly acquiesce to your humble request… because I enjoy listening to the sounds you make in situations like this~ If I was a person who took your words to heart I would be quite offended now, though."

"Pffft. Yeah, right- like anything I say could make you stop. You've been dying to get your hands on me again haven't you, you pervert?"

"Ah, how cruel. I believe something like this would be more enjoyable if you weren't insulting me?"

A small smirk tugged at Battler's lips, and he laughed softly; the sound breathy. "Ihihi~ We always insult each other, regardless of what's happening. That's not gonna change."

"Probably not… Ahaha~ Arguments like this are quite fun as well, though, so I don't mind. It makes it more satisfying when you're unable to retort~ That's why I'll keep doing this, if you really want…"

All of a sudden, those fingers were pressing against Battler's skin again, in a manner that made him shudder. Ronove was trailing soap suds down his back and carefully, skilfully massaging that exact spot that made Battler gasp with small, circular motions so a tremor ran through Battler's whole body. That demon butler was pretty damn good at this, a-and Battler had to wonder how he got so skilled- b-but asking might yield some creepy results, and soon Battler was completely unable to ask anyway (he could hardly form a coherent sentence in his mind anymore, let alone in his mouth) as he threw his head back and arched his spine, gasping, face bright red.

I-if he was this sensitive at just a little contact like this, then what would he be like when, when…

Aaargh, just thinking about it was making him get hard, and nothing had even happened yet- but the light sensation of Ronove's wet fingers, free of their gloves for once, trailing down his back was just so…


Yeah, it probably was a good thing he hadn't been put with one of the seven sisters after all. Despite Battler's idle fantasies, they wouldn't be nearly as good as giving massages as Ronove was.

Battler didn't even want to know what their idea of soft, romantic interaction was- but it probably involved a lot of staking and gouging; the head, chest, knee… stomach, was it… …?

That was kind of un-sexy.

And painful.

Definitely not what Battler was in to.

So… he was 'in to' weird demon butlers with rather feminine hair and an irritating manner of teasing him in every other sentence, was that it?

God, his preferences really had gone to hell ever since he became tangled up with Beato and all her magical girl friends. If he escaped from this sojourn with a crippling fear of women in general, imagining them all to be cruel witches, killer bunny girls or evil stake sisters, it'd cut his chances of getting a girlfriend down considerably. Then again, he could always just do this…

This was pretty nice…

R-really nice, actually…

It was just a shame that Ronove was laughing softly; evidently amused at Battler's sudden reaction to his gentle touches- and, aaargh, t-that… was kind of pissing him off… i-it wasn't fair that he should be completely relaxed in a scenario like this, whilst Battler had been reduced to an almost senseless, blushing, trembling wreck.

Battler's pride simply wouldn't allow this situation to be some completely unequal; he refused, damn it!


Ronove blinked at Battler curiously, hands frozen in mid-air- mainly because Battler had, with a considerable effort, turned about and caught his wrists in a tight grip.

They were facing each other now; Battler's face flushed, breathing heavily, and Ronove looking irritatingly calm and composed, with that small smile on his face even now.

Voice lower, and a little more… feral… than usual, Battler muttered, "That smile. It's pissing me off."

"Hm? What's wrong with it…?"

"You're just trying to act like you're in complete control, of me and your own feelings… but…" A challenging spark rose to Battler's eyes, and a small smirk tugged at the corners of his lips. "Ihihi~ That's wrong, isn't it? That's totally wrong. Yeah… it is wrong.

"You're forgetting that I know exactly where every single one of your weak points are as weeeell, ihihihi~"

Ronove opened his mouth, perhaps to make some sort of retort- but whatever that retort was, Battler never heard it.

He didn't want to hear it.

Ronove talked way too much, anyways. Battler, loathe as he was to admit it, did enjoy their light-hearted conversation and pointless back-and-forth arguing (though Ronove always dressed his comments up in a manner that didn't make them look nearly as insulting as Battler's were), but still…

There was a time and a place for talking.

This wasn't one of them.

Not when Battler was trying to make a point.

Battler rested his hands on Ronove's bare shoulders- and then, after a moment brief consideration, pressed his lips firmly against Ronove's.

Ronove's lips were already parted slightly, as he had been prepared to make some kind of comment before he was so rudely interrupted, and Battler took advantage of that to his fullest. Within moments, he had introduced his tongue to the deep, heated kiss, in a demanding manner that could hardly be considered elegant by any stretch of the imagination. Then again, things like this- sharing saliva, whilst pressing Ronove against the back of the bathtub so the icy cold against the demon's skin contrasted sharply against the warm water- rarely were.

Ronove moaned into the kiss, willingly opening his mouth wider to allow Battler better access; his face now just as flushed as Battler's, body trembling slightly.

Yeah, that was a really effective way of keeping him quiet, ihihi~

That damn demon butler liked to act like he was in control, but it wasn't entirely true, was it? Battler wasn't one to back down from a challenge- which was exactly what this kind of 'relationship' was.

A constant challenge.

That was the kind of thing Battler had always liked, though. Hadn't he always said his favorite type of girl would be the kind who teased him; who was fun and easy to talk to? The blonde hair and big boobs kind of had to be pushed to one side when it came to Ronove, but other than that, this was… shockingly enough… something that Battler didn't really mind.

In fact… he enjoyed it.

It would be a lie to say there wasn't any tender emotion involved, though. If that wasn't the case, Battler wouldn't- beyond his own arousal- have been trying so desperately to ensure Ronove was enjoying himself, and that his kiss wasn't forceful enough to truly hurt.

When Battler finally broke away, a string of saliva still connecting their open mouths, he was pleased to see Ronove's face was light pink.

Ihihihi~ Good, that was pretty good- but Battler still wasn't done yet~

"B-battler, you- aahn…"

Once more, whatever Ronove was going to say was cut off by Battler's mouth; now pressed against the juncture between his neck and shoulder. Battler had known all along just how sensitive this exact spot was for that demon- and, judging by the small sounds that emitted from Ronove's mouth, he hadn't been wrong.

First, Battler slowly- almost hesitantly- licked the small expanse of skin with his tongue, in a tender motion. Then, with a little more force, he started to use his teeth; biting down gently, not hard enough to break the skin or draw blood, on his already abused skin. At the same time, Battler's fingers gently squeezed Ronove's nipples.

The response to Battler's touches was instantaneous. A series of breathy moans and sighs fell from Ronove's mouth; lips parted, cheeks red, and for one of the first times in quite a while he found himself completely unable of saying anything at all.

Words failed him.

Battler grinned against Ronove's neck, and bit down just a little harder. Now he had enough courage to finally trail his fingers down Ronove's torso, dipping them under the surface of the warm water and-

"W-w-what the hell?"

Battler jumped so violently he very nearly hit himself in the face with his own fist. Ronove, meanwhile, flinched, as though a bucket of icy water had been poured on his head.

There, stood in the doorway of the bathroom… was her.

The newcomer to Beato's game.


Her eyes were wide, her mouth open, as though she'd just walked into an orgy- and, really, minus the fact there were only two people there… she kind of sort of had.

Battler didn't blame her for looking so horribly embarrassed. Her face was as red as her hair.

Ronove's small, polite, "…Hello, Miss Gretel. It's a pleasure to see you," didn't really help matters.

"Ah, um… nice to see you, gentleman…" Gretel muttered distractedly- and then, suddenly aware once more of exactly what she'd seen, she gave a gasp of alarm.

Turning about 180 degrees so sharply her cute pigtails bounced, she clapped her hands over her eyes tightly- as though trying to keep them from falling out of their sockets from shock.

Battler wondered whether she'd been so traumatized from the sight of him necking with Ronove her face would start melting.

W-well, it was alright for Gretel acting so horrified, b-but he was pretty damn mortified as well!

"A-aaah, useless it's all useless!" poor Gretel cried. "T-t-that damn witch told me nobody was using the bathroom, she told me… Aaaaah, it's all useless! I'm going to kill her!"

And with that half-embarrassed, half-murderous exclamation, Gretel vanished in a burst of butterflies. Her towel emblazoned with the Ushiromiya family crest, which she had brought with her for her own bath, did not vanish with her. Instead, it fell to the floor, resting in a crumpled heap.

Just like Battler's pride.

He backed away from Ronove, and turned his head away; demurely beginning to clean his hair all by himself.

That had completely killed the moment.

"B-beato…" Battler muttered darkly, "y-you did that on purpose, didn't you? If Gretel doesn't kill you, then I will."

Battler swore he could hear Beato cackling at him, but he wasn't sure whether it was his imagination or not.

Some time later, when Battler had towelled his hair dry and was attired in his usual clothes, he found himself seated in the usual hexagonal room where frequently he had his arguments with Beato. The Golden Witch had yet to arrive, as did anybody else, so he was killing time by wallowing his own humiliation- reliving the past events over and over in his head.

It wasn't helping anything.

He just wanted to take his head in his hands and whine 'useless, it's all useleeeeess!'

Not that that ever got him anywhere.

And then, in an unwelcome burst of butterflies, she appeared once more.


Her face had regained its typical emotionless frown, her eyes were eerily empty, and she had her arms planted on her sides. She looked exactly like a parent ready to scold a child.

Battler gulped.

This didn't bode well…

"… …You've developed an odd method of trying to deny witches and magic," said Gretel coldly, after a small pause.

Battler winced.

T-that kind of hurt…

"But, it's really none of my business who or what you do," Gretel continued smoothly, taking a seat opposite Battler. Crossing her legs, and smoothing down her white skirt, she said, voice authoritative, "However, I am working as your ally in this fight, so I will have to ask you a few questions about your… relationship…" she wrinkled up her nose at that word, "…with that demon butler."


This definitely had parent-child vibes. Was she going to give him a sex talk? Really? That strange girl with the perpetual frown who made fun of his haircut?

Battler sunk down in his chair, praying for a black hole to open up and swallow him.

Sadly, it didn't happen. Gaap was elsewhere tormenting Virgilia, and so was unable to heed his desperate prayer.

"Now. First things first," said Gretel. "You have been practising safe sex, yes? He might be a demon, but I'm still concerned about the prospect of STDs. I don't want my 'ally' catching something life-threatening, it would be such a pain if you dropped down dead."

Battler's face turned redder and redder.

W-why the hell were they having this conversation?

Aaaah, this was a nightmare!

As Gretel's intensive questioning continued, Battler started to fall into himself, just like a collapsible telescope. He was beginning to envy those damn telescopes, that could fold themselves up neatly into insignificance. Maybe, if he had a skill like that, he wouldn't have be involved in such an awkward conversation.

Battler was slumped forwards with his arms wrapped round his middle, as though he were trying to compress his body into non-existent anti-matter.

It wasn't really working.

No matter what he did, Gretel still stared at him, and still asked him questions.

Even his ears had turned red.

Nothing had tortured him to this extent on Beato's game board before...

At least it looked like Gretel had almost finished. There couldn't be any more questions she wanted to ask... right?

"And finally," Gretel said, to the thoroughly dispirited and despairing Battler, "this is the most important question."

There was a small pause.

Hope welled up in Battler's heart. Maybe he'd be able to escape after this, and then go eat Ronove's cookies and complain to him... or maybe they could try and continue the events from earlier, but in private? That sounded pretty nice~ Battler knew all about that demon butler's other weak points, not just his neck~ He really liked it when people played about with his hair as well, didn't he? Ihihihi, it was kind of funny to watch...

But Battler's idle musings soon came to a cold, stony end.

Gretel's eyes had lit up.

A smile rose to her face.

Battler... didn't like that smile.

Battler had never seen her smile before, so it was incredibly shocking.

"You just have to tell me this, okay? Who's the top and who's the bottom? Which one of you is on the recieving end? It has to be you, right, Battler, given you're shorter, and Ronove is probably more experienced? Ahaha~"

Instantly, Battler's hopes were crushed underfoot.

He very nearly choked on his own tongue.

"W-what the hell? T-that's private! Why the hell do you want to know thaaaat?"

Gretel's instant response was firm. Stabbing a finger in Battler's direction, she declared powerfully, and without any trace of irony,

"Because it's hot!"

a/n: oh god what is this I don't even XD
It's a trashy oneshot so it deserves a trashy title from a trashy song XDD;
But it's okay, I love Hyuna really~

I imagine Beato would only ever be okay with a situation like this if she could use it to routinely humiliate Battler, and also write yaoi doujinshi and then sell it at Comiket with her fellow fangirls, Virgilia and Ange XD And even then she would only be 'okay' with it if it took place in some stange universe slightly different from Umineko's XD I blame those Ougon Cross endings for this, really…

Um, and thank you Magu-chan, for ensuring me this is decent enough to post ^_^;; I'm still a little iffy about writing stuff like this so it was nice to have your opinion on it, ehehe x3

~renahhchen xoxo