Almost a year later, Keito was still uncertain about his relationship with Seri.
Of course, he really had no reason to be, which Seri would tell him over and over. They loved each other, and anything they had thought was in the way was just a misunderstanding on one or both of their parts. But still, it wasn't easy for Keito to change, and the longer they were together, the longer he had to become attached to him and worry that Seri didn't care for him nearly as much as he did for the other man. Keito's love for his boyfriend consumed him, to the point where if he were braver, or maybe just meaner, than he was, he may have been like Seri's old boyfriend, the one who came by and insisted they get back together even if Seri didn't care about him anymore.
But Keito would never do something like that. Seri probably believed it was because he actually loved him, and he knew there were certain boundaries you shouldn't cross if you want to have a healthy relationship. That part was true, to an extent. But the real reason Keito couldn't fight for Seri was exactly because he wasn't brave. He saw himself as tall, awkward and scary, and the more time he had to think about it, the less reason he could find for why Seri would want to stay with him.
There was one thing Keito could do to try to keep Seri, though, and that was to continue to love him. He considered himself lucky that Seri stayed with him this long, and he wanted to give him as little reason as possible to want to break up with him.
That didn't, however, prevent him from worrying. Such worries came up one day when Keito went over to eat dinner and spend the night.
"Hey, Keito-kun," Seri said with a smile as he opened the door to see his giant of a boyfriend standing there. He stepped aside so Keito could take his shoes off in the genkan. Since it had been a day off and he didn't need to go out for anything, Seri just had a t-shirt and sweatpants on.
Of course, Keito would probably find him breathtaking in anything, and for that matter, nothing.
"G-good evening, Seri-san," Keito said. He also had a smile on his face, but it was so much brighter than the one Seri wore. It wasn't, of course, that Seri wasn't happy to see his boyfriend, but Riri-chan had been right; Keito just lit up in Seri's presence, to the point where even if they didn't know they were together, it would be easy for an outsider to tell that Seri was special to him somehow. "I brought things to make soba so if you want, I can make it- or we can make it together, I don't mind…"
Seri sighed and smiled, pulling Keito down into a kiss. "We can make it together, Keito-kun. Don't worry so much."
Keito knew Seri was right, but as he put on his slippers and went to the kitchen to take out the block of soba and things for the broth, he knew that just saying it wouldn't help. He wouldn't, after all, change that easily.
The trouble began when they'd finished prepping the soba and had it cooking on the stove. Seri's cell phone was on the counter, and even though Seri had been ignoring it, Keito couldn't help but notice that it had been constantly vibrating for about fifteen minutes now.
"Seri-san, are you sure you don't want to answer your phone?" Keito asked, looking over at it. It had started vibrating again, and when Seri didn't answer, it vibrated again once, meaning the person had left a text message.
Seri looked a little irritated. Not at Keito, but at the phone itself, like he was really mad at it. Whoever kept calling and texting seemed to be someone Seri didn't want to talk to, and it was getting harder and harder for him to avoid answering. He just shook his head, though, picking up the phone and hitting the side volume panel until his phone was put on silence.
"It's just someone from work, Keito-kun. But I don't want to talk to them right now." He put on a warm smile before dropping his cell phone onto the counter again, then using his now-free hand to tug Keito down into a kiss. "This is our time, remember? We haven't seen each other in a while because of your studies…"
Keito, true to form, immediately melted into the kiss. His worries about there being something wrong weren't completely gone, but he always did this when Seri kissed him first. It wasn't as if it was a strange occurrence, because despite usually being on the receiving end in bed, Seri was actually quite dominant in their relationship. But even after a year, getting a kiss from Seri made Keito's heart flutter and his world melt away until it was just them, standing there and sharing a sweet kiss while they made dinner together. It was like they had been together for years, instead of less than a year. It might have just been because Keito never had that many close relationships, let alone a romantic one, but Seri was his world, and he couldn't imagine what would happen if he were taken away.
The trouble continued after dinner. Because Seri had turned his phone to silent, they hadn't had to worry about hearing vibrations or a ringtone while they ate. Keito had been a little upset about Seri being in a bad mood, and Seri had climbed onto his lap and let him feed him. It was gestures like this that made Keito's smile even goofier than usual, mostly because he tried to do things like feed him or open the door on the car when he borrowed one from his parents to drive them around and Seri usually told him he didn't have to go to that kind of trouble.
But as soon as Seri got up and went to put his bowl in the sink for draining, he notice the front display on his phone was lit-up and he sighed. Keito expected him to ignore it again and go about washing the dishes, but he picked up his phone and headed for the bedroom. "Keito-kun, could you wait a minute? I'll make us lattes once I answer this call."
All Keito could do was nod. After all, if this person was trying so hard to get in contact with Seri, it had to be important. He wasn't going to tell him not to answer just because he was getting a bad feeling in the pit of his stomach.
Even though Seri would be taking out more dishes that would need washing when he made lattes, Keito decided to wash the ones from dinner, anyway. It never hurt to have a little less work to do, right? But as soon as he finished running the water into the dishpan, he could hear Seri in the bedroom, talking to whoever it was on the phone.
"I already told you, you can't come over today!" His voice was unusually loud, and it scared Keito. He couldn't remember the last time Seri yelled; it had certainly never been at him. Unless it was to his ex-boyfriends, Seri was usually happy and carefree, to the point where Keito suspected it would take a lot to frazzle him. The bad feeling in the pit of his stomach came back and, abandoning the dishwater, Keito went to the bedroom.
Seri had closed the door.
"Yeah yeah, I know you've been asking for a week now, but it's not a good time," Seri was saying, his voice going down to a more appropriate level. He sighed, the kind of sigh he always let out when he was trying to calm down after seeing an ex. "Maybe another time. I'm working tomorrow so I'll see you then and we can talk about it."
The bad feeling was moving from Keito's stomach to his heart, and he slowly stepped away from the door, feeling tears spring to his eyes. Seri didn't let the conversation go much longer than that, though, and before Keito could go back to the sink and make it look like he'd been scrubbing their bowls, he emerged again.
"Keito-kun?" he asked, furrowing his eyebrows as he saw his boyfriend standing halfway between the bedroom door and the sink, looking upset. "What's the matter?"
"N-nothing, Seri-san!" Keito said, waving his hands, then using one to wipe the tears from his eyes. "D-do you still want lattes? Mama has been helping me practice at home so I can make them today."
Seri shook his head and went to get what he'd need. "It's all right, Keito-kun."
Keito didn't fight it, instead going to the living room and sitting on Seri's low couch. Seri had left his phone in the bedroom so neither of them had any way of telling if that person tried to call or text again. But the feeling Keito got when he heard Seri talking to them wasn't leaving, and no amount of watching Seri hum happily as he moved around the kitchen was going to make it go away.
Is… is Seri-san cheating on me?
Inspired by an RP; I'm seri-loves-lattes over on Tumblr. This is also cross-posted to yourfanfiction. I made an account on there under the same name because apparently all the cool kids were doing it~ Hope you all enjoyed, despite the angst ;_;