Title: Two Sides of the Same Coin
Word Count: 1127
Pairing: None, though maybe you could look at it as very slight Barnaby/Kotetsu, if you squint.
Topic: T&B Anon Meme Prompt: "Glasses!Kotetsu"
Type: Alternate Reality, Glasses!Kotetsu-verse
Disclaimer: I don't own anything from Tiger and Bunny. Tiger and Bunny belong to Sunrise and their respective creators.
VTM: Okay, just giving a quick warning, this is a "Glasses!Kotetsu" fic, what is "Glasses!Kotetsu"? Oddly, on pixiv there is a strange trend in fanart that features Kotetsu in glasses and portrayed as being timid/nerdy/"moe". This is a little bit of my take on it, so if characters seem a little OOC, I apologize. With that being said and out of the way, I hope that you enjoy the show!
Barnaby could feel them, honey gold eyes behind a modest pair of glasses, staring at him. Barnaby tried to ignore them at first, hoping that their owner would take the hint and would leave him be. But after a while he could see from the corner of his eye that Kotetsu kept getting distracted from his paper work just to look at him with a look of concern.
Barnaby sighed and looked at his partner. "What do you want?"
"A-ah! N-nothing!" The veteran hero stuttered as he nervously played with the ends of sleeves of his baggy brown sweater. He obviously wanted to ask the younger hero something, but the moment Barnaby looked at him he lost all his nerve. He then looked back at his computer screen and went back to typing, looking as meek as a mouse.
Barnaby couldn't really understand his partner, he often wondered if Kotetsu had a split personality at times. On one hand, you had this Kotetsu, who Barnaby had dubbed "civilian Kotetsu", a meek and mild man that almost seemed like he was scared of his own shadow at times. He dressed in clothing that usually seemed to be too big on him and very conservative.
On the other hand, you had what Barnaby dubbed "Hero Kotetsu", or better known as "Wild Tiger", Kotetsu's hero persona in more than just name. Whether Kotetsu was dressed in that ridiculous looking blue outfit, or the suit that Saito had designed, or even just that stupid little mask he'd wear, Kotetsu's personality would completely change. As soon as that mask was put on, gone was the stuttery, nervous wreck of a man that Barnaby had to deal with for most of the day. Instead, he was given a new problem to deal with. "Wild Tiger" was as wild and brash as his name suggested. He was loud, blunt, prideful, and reckless. His fashion sense even changed considerably, while still conservative, in a classic kind of way, he'd manage to dress in classy way that still managed to show off his figure. It was easy to forget just how well built Kotetsu really was when he was in "Civilian Mode".
Barnaby just really couldn't understand it, it confused and irritated him. He gave a sigh as he logged off his computer. "Come on, old man...We have to go to another photo shoot today."
Kotetsu jumped slightly at this bit of news. "H-huh?! A-again? Since when?"
Barnaby frowned a little. "Loyds told us when we arrived this morning."
Kotetsu scratched the back of his head and gave a sheepish grin. "O-Oh, I guess I wasn't paying attention..."
Barnaby was less than impressed by this display. "...You were playing World of Warcraft again, weren't you?"
"N-No..." Kotetsu avoided eye contact with his partner, but he could feel Barnaby's green eyes burning holes right through him. "...Yes. I'm sorry, Mr. Brooks."
Barnaby shook his head and made his way towards the door of their office. "You're so hopeless."
"...And you're just a stuck up brat."
"Excuse me?" Barnaby said as he turned around to give his partner a glare. It was then that he saw that Kotetsu had already switched his glasses for his hero mask.
Kotetsu got up from his desk chair, straightened his posture, and removed his baggy brown sweater, revealing his green dress shirt and white and black vest underneath it. As he made his way toward Barnaby, he slicked back some of his hair and put on his paperboy cap, completing the outfit. "You heard me." He said with a shrug. "By the way Bunny, have you been eating properly lately? You're looking a bit thin there..." He then walked on ahead of him and out the door leaving a confused Barnaby.
After the rookie hero had a moment to regain his composure, he followed after Kotetsu. Though he couldn't really understand his partner, in a way he figured that his partner's change of personality had to do with "confidence". When he had the glasses he was just "Civilian Kotetsu", an ordinary man that couldn't seem to do much right. When he was in his hero suit or just wearing a mask, he was "Wild Tiger" a hero that could do amazing things to help people, and even if he didn't get many points, who the hell cared what anyone thought?
That was the simplest way to look at it, or so Barnaby figured. It was either that, or Kotetsu really did have a split personality. And if that was the case, then which one of them was the real Kotetsu T. Kaburagi? And just how the hell did that guy ever manage to get married and have a kid? Who'd put up with that? Barnaby rubbed the temple of his head as he walked down the hall towards the elevator. So many questions, his partner was such a headache.
"Oi, Bunny-Chan..." Kotetsu said suddenly. He was waiting for him by the elevator. "You okay? You look like you have a headache or something."
"It's none of your business, old man." Barnaby said with a slight stubborn tone in his voice.
"Of course it is, we're partners, remember?" Kotetsu said with a smirk. "I have some aspirin in my car, I'll fetch it before we leave."
"Would you just bud out of my business?" Barnaby snapped.
"Nope." Kotetsu said in a blunt tone. "You're just going to have to deal with it, Bunny-chan." He then gave Barnaby a cheeky grin.
Barnaby could feel his eye give a slight twitch at the nickname, he was starting to miss the more timid Kotetsu at this point.
The elevator then arrived with a faint "ding" as its doors opened. The two heroes stepped inside and Kotetsu hit the button for the ground floor.
The blonde gave an annoyed sigh, but deep down he actually appreciated being offered something for the growing headache he was getting. Even if it was the old man's fault to begin with. Kotetsu T. Kaburagi was a very confusing man, one that Barnaby just could not understand. Much of the time he'd like to think that he hated the man. But sometimes, on those rare occasions, he found that Kotetsu wasn't as bad as he seemed. While he flipped from one personality to another, both shared an almost fatherly quality to them. It was a quality that Barnaby found he was starting to like about his partner. As foolish as it was, he couldn't help but wonder which side of Kotetsu he liked better. Barnaby tried to shake the thought from his head, what was likable about that annoying old man? Absolutely nothing. Besides, why would he have to choose anyway? It's not like things were going to change between them anytime soon, right?
However, unknown to Barnaby, Kotetsu was in his own thoughts, going over a disturbing conversation he had with his old boss, Ben Jackson, just days before. Kotetsu was left thinking about an uncertain future.