Title: Building Blocks and Condom Boxes.
Author: SYNdicate 930.
Summary: AU. Romano, a young kindergarten teacher, is finding it increasingly hard to come up with rent money by the ends of each month now, so he decides getting a roommate to help alleviate the stress of paying for everything himself would be the best solution. However, all he needs now is a solution for handling his new roommate, Antonio, the pornstar. Spamano. Rating will most likely go up at some point. Smutty-fluff.~
Note: I'm gomen for last chapter being a flop. I just needed to get that over with. Uwaa. I saw someone post on tumblr something about me updating and they seemed really excited, so I thought I would update again. I'm stalking posts about this fic heheh.
Also, in Japanese culture, I remember one of my aunts saying red camellias are supposed to mean, like, true love or just love or something so yeah (others say it's supposed to be death or something, but I'm going with the first one)~*~*~
OH AND I will be posting a link to my updates for this fic on my RP/derp tumblr (Bakaomine) in the Spamano tag. So, uhm, yeah? You can bug me on there if I'm taking too long to update.
Chapter 15: The Partner Rule/Lost and Found.
Antonio was relieved to find he and Gilbert unharmed, or scolded, Romano doing no more brushing them off lightly and with not so much as a curse or cold glare (or, at least not glaring immediately). Though, there were a multitude of reasons as to why Romano would have wanted to leave them unscathed.
For one thing, they were in a public setting. This meant that there were more than enough people to jump in and call the police in the worst case scenario in which Romano would literally tear Antonio and Gilbert into shreds with his bare hands. Violence happened a lot in the city and were blasted all over the news every evening and in the newspaper over one horrid thing or another, so the police grew to getting where they need to be in an incredibly short amount of time. This also meant that, if he were to dispose of the men's ripped bits and pieces, he wouldn't have any time to hide them before running for his life.
Also, judging by the large crowd of children sitting on the grass in front of him and the little boy with the glasses and strange cowlick who ran up to Matthew and referred to Romano as 'Mr. Vargas', he was much too close to his students, and any sort of foul language or violence in front of his kids would have surely gotten him in trouble the moment they returned to school. Even if Romano wasn't the best role model himself, he took pride in his professional life regardless.
Or maybe he was just keeping in his anger for later. It was a scary thought; saving up all of his rage and then letting it all explode at once.
He had seen the way Romano would lash out on Gilbert and Francis for all the times they had tried getting in bed with him while he would sleep in the middle of the night; waking up to the sound of Romano yelling angrily, sometimes in English, and, on nights where the two went too far (trying to get in bed with Romano naked), sometimes with some bits of Italian wedged in between.
In the unlikely case of his personality taking a quick one-eighty, there was also the possibility that Romano hadn't found anything wrong with what he saw. Antonio had found himself between Gilbert's legs every so often—what with their shoots and videos together—so he had no problem being in such a compromising position, and neither did the albino. The only thing that made embarrassment flare in the pit of his stomach was having Romano stare at him like that. And this was surprising.
After being helped up by Matthew, the two men were invited to stick around with him and Romano until it was time for the children to leave. When asked why, they were told that today was a half-day, and that the children's parents were to pick them up at the park while they waited for each guardian to arrive.
As expected, Gilbert jumped on the chance to spend more time around Matthew, draping an arm around his shoulders and pulling him close, his strong arm slipping downwards to hook around the blonde's waist sneakily and with a coy smile. Matthew's face lit up in a sharp color of red instantaneously in that way Gilbert remembered from their first encounter at the Halloween party a little while back. Matthew didn't put up much of an effective fight or stop towards all of Gilbert's advances; with every step Matthew took away to separate themselves—even if it was just by a little—Gilbert would follow, eliminating whatever distance stood between them, stuck together at the hip for the remainder of the day. They remained together as the children threw out their garbage and got up to leave, to keeping an eye on the last two or three children waiting to be brought home at the park's front entrance.
On the way back to the entrance, Gilbert and Matthew walked in front of the children to lead, while Romano and Antonio found themselves at the back, watching over them to make sure there were no strays. Antonio found it amusing the way Matthew would try to pry Gilbert off himself, only to have the man return to him like a strong magnet drawn towards a metal surface.
That poor man. Antonio's known Gilbert for so long, that he knew a small 'no' was not enough to get him to leave Matthew alone. Gilbert was a persistent one. It was one of his worst and best traits.
Walking just a step in front of him, Feliciano made quick friends with some of the boys in Romano's class. Antonio recognized one of them immediately to be Matthew's younger brother, the young blonde lad with the strange cowlick, glasses, and electrified blue eyes who had his hand over a shy Japanese boy's. From what Antonio's seen so far, it only made sense that Feliciano was naturally likeable, what with that endearing way of his capable of pulling people into his sweet and affectionate orbit.
"Hi, my name is Feliciano and I like pasta! Vee~ What are your names?" Was the Italian boy's introduction, to which Matthew's brother replied enthusiastically.
"My name's Alfred, and I'm a hero!" he pointed to himself proudly, and then to the boy beside him, "And this is Kiku. He's not that much of a hero, but he's just as cool!"
"It's nice to meet you, Feliciano." Kiku gave a small bow. Antonio could tell he was a polite little boy. "Why aren't you holding someone's hand?"
Feliciano tilted his head, "What do you mean, Kiku?"
"It's Mr. Vargas' rule that we have to have a friend to hold hands with whenever we go out on field trips like this. That way we all stick together." Replied the Japanese boy. A smile broke out on Antonio's face as he glanced over to the other kids in line all holding hands with their respective partner, unable to keep a straight face at the thought of Romano creating and enforcing such an adorable rule. It was cute.
"Where's your partner?" Asked Alfred. Feliciano said he didn't have one. "What? You don't have one!? Then the three of us will be partners!" Alfred held out his free hand and Feliciano took it with a smile. "The hero has to make sure no one is ever left behind!"
Antonio eavesdropped on the trio for a small while, remembering what it was like to be young and to make friends so easily; a small introduction, smile, and a large friendship was already in the making and quickly blooming.
At this age, people were much more guarded and cautious around others. Adults were cold, and that was one of the things Antonio didn't like about most people his age. It made it harder to get to know others when they had such strong walls around themselves. Though he's always been able to find a way into someone's heart one way or another, there were people like Romano who let little to no one in. Then again, he never really minded. Antonio liked that part of Romano that was cold; it was the cool, refreshing burst of a winter's breeze to his overly warm disposition. He really liked Romano as is.
"Hey, basta—Antonio," he glanced away from the three children to the man beside him. Dressed as stylishly and expensively as always, Romano walked beside him with crossed arms and a soft scowl on his features; Antonio could tell he was keeping face and refraining from using any harsh language for the children, and having a hard time of doing so. "What were you, Feli and that idio—I mean, Gilbert doing here?"
"Well, I woke up and I was alone in the apartment with Feli. To tell you the truth, it was him that woke me up. He said he was hungry, so decided to take him out for some breakfast," Antonio made sure to leave out that it was at Ivan's pub with a small bite of his lip, which sent a blush to Romano's face. But Antonio didn't notice, of course. The Spaniard never noticed those sorts of things, "And then I decided to let him play and took him to the playground here. While we were here, we ran into Gilbert and Francis."
He thought Romano would be glad to see him taking care of Feliciano, and he tilted his head. Maybe he was mad. "How so?"
"You said you ran into Gilbert and Francis. There's Gilbert," He nodded in the German's direction, who was currently trying to get his hands in the back pockets of Matthew's jeans. Matthew swatted his hands away, to which Antonio snickered at. That poor, poor man. That isn't anywhere near enough to keep Gilbert at bay. "Then where's that perver—Francis?"
Antonio blinked. He'd almost forgotten about Francis. Antonio hadn't seen or heard from him since they had split up in the garden. "I'm not sure. He's probably with a pretty lady right now. He has a tendency to flirt a lot."
Romano snorted. "Don't the both of them?"
He chuckled lightly, Romano's eyes lingering over the way Antonio's lips quirked upward, "I guess you're right."
"Hey, fratello?" Their attention shifted from one another to Feliciano, who was looking over his shoulder. Alfred and Kiku turned their heads as well. "Alfred and Kiku told me about the Partner Rule. Where's your partner?"
"What are you talking about?" Chimed in Alfred.
"Isn't that man beside Mr. Vargas his partner?" Asked Kiku.
"You mean Antonio? Oh, I didn't think of that," The blush that spread across Romano's olive complexion went unnoticed yet again as Antonio listened to the kids talking amongst themselves. "Wait, but they aren't holding hands."
"Yeah, you're right," Turning his attention away from his friends, Alfred said to the men behind him, "You guys should hold hands then!"
"We should what?" Romano blinked hard, wondering if he had heard right.
"It's only fair that he be your partner and you hold hands with your partner. It's the Partner Rule!" Alfred tried to reason confidently. Kiku and Feliciano nodded in agreement. Romano didn't want to hold Antonio's hand. He didn't. He didn't. He didn't. He had a big problem with this. "You have to hold hands with your partner, Mr. Vargas!"
Romano's face was getting redder by the second, especially at the way they used the word 'partner' so freely and easily. If only Matthew were around to shut his little brother up.
In their world, a partner was someone they stick around with; synonymous to the word 'friend'—a buddy they make sure didn't get lost during these sorts of outings. But, in the adult world Romano and Antonio were more or less well-versed in, the word 'partner' had a much bigger meaning, and this brought up strange thoughts of life as Antonio's lover—thoughts he had to shake his head free of, exterminate completely. When he looked to Antonio, he saw that he was nodding along in understanding. That idiot wasn't hearing it the way he was. And of course he wouldn't. He may have been a man, but he had the maturity of a boy.
He refused to admit he was getting all flustered and that the heat in his cheeks was more than his mind playing tricks on him. Romano sighed; there was no use in being or thinking like this.
"Isn't fratello going to hold hands with Antonio now?" Asked Feliciano. Antonio didn't seem to have a problem with it, and Romano had a problem with that as well. And he was conflicted. There was that pleading look in the little boy's large amber irises. "Partners have to hold hands! It's the rules, right?"
Biting his lip, Romano stepped closer, unaware of the extra pairs of eyes watching him, as his hand slowly inched close, to his surprise, Antonio's hand collided into his softly before wrapping around his own, his eyes going wide as the Spaniard smiled down at the boys. In his ever cheerful tone, Antonio's accented baritone rung through Romano's ears like music, "How's that, boys? Mr. Vargas and I holding hands like partners now."
The three boys were delighted, and took an automatic liking to Antonio as well as some of the other little boys and girls closer towards the end of the line. They asked him many questions: like what his full name was (to which they repeated, thinking it was cool to have such a long name, especially with the way he added some accents), what his favorite color was, the kind of food and music and sports he liked, and just about anything they could think of. Antonio answered each and every single one of them with a smile, his natural ability with kids shining brightly.
But Romano remained silent and paid no attention to that, though. Not with that able hand over his, and fingers intertwined with his own and the light fluttering of his quickly beating heart at the feel of Antonio's addictive warmth. He feels drawn towards him, but Romano would never admit to something as unbelievably absurd as that.
Sitting on the bench a few inches away from Romano, who sat silently, Antonio leaned back on his hands a little nervously. The fear that Romano was bottling up his fury and then releasing it when they are alone still carried through and he began to shake his restless leg.
Romano was the type to always find fault in him and everyone and everything around him, so why was he being like this? He was supposed to be swearing at him for doing something wrong and as little as something like forgetting to put the cap back on the toothpaste or as innocent as leaving his condoms—still in their wrapped packaging, of course—lying around the living room. Instead, he hadn't said a word since asking about Gilbert and Francis, who, speaking of which, still hadn't reared his blonde head of long hair.
Antonio should have been grateful, but he was more on edge because who knew? Maybe he should apologize. They had spoken a little on their return to the park entrance, so Antonio had no idea as to why he was being so silent other than the scary prospect of him being angry at him.
"Bye, Kiku. Bye, Wang." Said Romano, who waved to the little Japanese boy and his brother. He was the last of the children to go. The two walked away hand in hand, though Kiku a tad reluctant, and Alfred, who remained as Matthew was his guardian, glaring daggers at Gilbert who was taking all of his brother's attention away from him, broke away for a split second to run after him.
"Hey, Kiku!" The little boy turned around to look at him with dull, brown eyes, tilting his head curiously at the sight of the little boy in his red, white and blue shirt running towards him.
"Ah, Alfred. Is something the matter?"
"I forgot I picked this for you while we were walking in the garden on our way back," He held out a small, red camellia. "Since I know you like the color red, I thought you would like it!"
Kiku's fair cheeks turned a light shade of pink, and he bowed, accepting the pretty flower and then looking up at his brother. Turning his attention back to Alfred, he grinned, "Thank you, Alfred."
The two said their goodbyes, and Kiku was off with his brother, Alfred running back to his brother's side, tugging on his pant leg to take back the spotlight Gilbert had stole from him.
"Well, that looks like the last of them," Said Feliciano, staring up at Matthew and Gilbert from his spot on the bench. He sneered a little in disgust at the way Gilbert touched his best friend everywhere and anywhere he so pleased. "Guess it's time to go. Hey, albino, get your hands off my friend."
"Why should I? Mattie over here likes it, don't you?"
"He's been trying to get you off of him the whole time you've been with us, it's obvious he doesn't—"
Sitting on the other side of Romano, Feliciano poked his brother in the lap, the annoyed teacher's attention falling onto him immediately, "Fratello, I'm getting hungry."
"Yeah, me too!" Alfred said to Matthew.
The two elder siblings looked each other and quickly came to an agreement and to make lunch for all of them, including Antonio and Gilbert, at the Italian's apartment just a few blocks away. Feliciano and Alfred clapped and cheered happily, though a little disappointed Kiku wasn't going to be there to join them.
Getting off the bench, Romano led the way, Feliciano scurrying off after him with Alfred close behind Matthew and Gilbert. Antonio walked by himself a step behind, still wondering where in the world Francis was. The six of them filed into the apartment minutes later, the children darting up the stairs and onto their floor and into the hallway with Romano following close behind with his keys. Antonio noted the hall smelled of McDonalds.
Hopping up and down, Feliciano was excited to play with Alfred and vice versa. Romano tried to shoo them away so he could unlock the door for them. Meanwhile, Gilbert took a brief second to turn away from Matthew to ask Antonio, "Hey, where's Francis at? We lost him and still haven't found him."
Antonio shrugged and heard the soft 'click' of their door unlocking, following Romano into the apartment. "Lost him? Haven't found him? You make him sound like a lost hat. I'm sure he'll turn up eventually."
Crouching down to cover the boys' eyes immediately upon entering, Romano along with Gilbert, and Matthew paused with wide eyes to stare at the flushed mess of tangled limbs and clothes strewn across the living room floor; lustful and surprised green and blue eyes staring back at the group in shock.
Shirtless and sweating, his long blonde hair kept in a messy ponytail, Francis lingered in the space between Arthur's spread, bare legs, who's naturally shaggy hair was mussed up and damp with sweat as a sinuous aura dwelled between his naked body and the Frenchman's, on the wooden floor beside the coffee table in the living room; the ending credits of a long forgotten movie playing on the flat screen the only noise that filled the otherwise awkward silence that settled between they and those at the door. For a moment no one said a thing, not even Alfred or Feliciano, who stood still with Romano's hands over their eyes, blinded and frozen where they stood wondering what was going on. Even Gilbert had nothing to say.
Antonio pointed to the pair on the floor "Hey, look, Gilbert. I found Francis."