"Because someone did something nice for me."
Shizuo replied evenly to Izaya's unusually furiously loud words, feeling a strange sense of peace and calm.
"Even if it's you."
He paused, then spoke the words he felt from his heart –
"Someone...went to such lengths to let me know he appreciated my existence."
"I don't appreciate your existence, I would never!" Izaya spluttered, digging his nails into the fabric of Shizuo's shirt.
"I just did that so that Shizu-chan would get mad because he realized I tricked him!"
"Well, too bad, you said 'Happy Birthday Shizuo', it's practically saying to me you're celebrating my existence, celebrating the day I was born."
"As if I would ever celebrate the existence of a monster!"
"Oh shut up and stop complaining," Shizuo said in annoyance as he pushed Izaya's face further into his chest.
"Although it's so much better when you're honest, you're noisy and it pisses me off. And before you get any ideas, if you continue yapping, I will kiss you."
Izaya fumed, his cheeks so warm Shizuo could feel the heat through the fabric of his shirt. "I hate you."
"As an informant, you should know I already have that information," Shizuo said dryly and Izaya didn't even have the energy to retort, "Why don't you just admit it already?"
Shizuo paused, and said the word which contained an emotion he had felt so many unbearable times –
Had anyone had been able to see the two small figures on the top of the Ferris Wheel, they would have seen a truly strange sight.
They would have seen two men, one on his knees and the other with his arm around him. These two men held no fear as they situated themselves on the curved edge many feet away from the ground.
This was because they both had excellent parkour skills and one of them had chased the other to the top of the Ferris Wheel, and although it was a stretch from their usual tall buildings, it was not anything new but routine for them.
For they were Orihara Izaya and Heiwajima Shizuo.
But at that moment, as Heiwajima Shizuo held Orihara Izaya in his arms and spoke to him about the common emotion he knew they shared, they were just two men who knew what it was like to be alone, to be shunned for who they were.
And although Orihara Izaya did not admit it, his heart was lifted by Heiwajima Shizuo's presence
At his side, above everyone else - above all his humans –
- On top of the world.
"While I'm with no particular person, I'm not alone. I'm a God, so I'm solitary. Lonely is such a depressing word. And how can I be depressed when I'm amused by my lovely humans? How can I be lonely when I have my humans?"
"You don't have your humans," Shizuo said, "Because your humans have each other. So you're like me," he inhaled, "Alone."
"Then what is Shinra? What is Celty?"
Izaya's eyes flashed.
"What is Tom? What is Vorona? What is Akane? Acquaintances? People you don't know?"
He gave a dry laugh.
"Shizu-chan would call them friends, wouldn't he? Friends. Because Shizu-chan has his friends, my humans are taken away from me."
Izaya spat, glaring into Shizuo's eyes.
"By a monster."
Shizuo said in sudden realization, staring at Izaya as if in a new light.
Shizuo blinked. His eyes scrutinized Izaya.
"Envious, aren't you? You're envious of me."
"Why would I-mpf!"
Shizuo had leaned down and covered Izaya's mouth.
"Shut up for a moment."
Izaya glared, until Shizuo took his hand away. His eyes posed a fiery question.
"Who knows." Shizuo said in reply.
"Anyway, sorry….I guess. I didn't know -"
The hand reaching for Izaya's hair was slapped away.
"Yeah ignorance is bliss isn't it, Shizu-chan? And don't touch me."
Shizuo inhaled, then spoke again.
"Alright fine, I try to understand you and I fucking apologize, and I get this shit? Fine, I'm leaving then, forget it, what the hell was I thinking?"
As he muttered the last words, he withdrew from Izaya and stood up, turning around.
Fear bloomed like a dark flower in Izaya's eyes. The man in a bartender suit with his back to Izaya moved –
And the information broker reached out, grasping onto the fabric with tense fingers.
Izaya said. But the other man seemed to not notice, and Izaya tightened his grip and tugged as he felt movement –
"I said wait!"
Shizuo's voice was gruff, the roughness scraping and forcing open Izaya's heart.
"You can't….just leave…."
"And why can't I?"
"I don't know…."
The words that told that Izaya was lacking information slipped from the information broker's lips.
"Don't waste my time, flea –"
"I said I DON'T KNOW!"
There was silence after Izaya's outburst. But Shizuo still did not turn, and Izaya leaned forward. He couldn't reach the taller man's neck, so he buried his face in the broad back.
- I don't know why I'm acting like this.
- I don't know why you have this kind of effect on me.
- I don't know why the hell seeing your back made me react
- I don't know how you can read me with your protozoic brain
- I don't know why at this moment I don't want you to leave.
- I know everything about everyone.
- But when it comes to you I don't know anything
- Even this plan I was so sure would work, has backfired like all my other plans
- Because of you.
- You're just gaining more and more leverage on me, when I have nothing on you
- That's why….I really…
"I don't want you to leave."
Izaya said, his bangs covering his eyes.
"I don't know why, but I don't want you to leave. I-I'm sorry. I'm sorry, alright?! There, now we're even! We've both apologized! So –"
Izaya swallowed. He couldn't finish his sentence, his throat was suddenly dry. He blinked rapidly, then decided to remain silent, hoping Shizuo got his point.
"….You know I hate you right?"
Izaya swallowed past the dryness in his throat when he realized he was supposed to reply.
"I….I hate you too."
Silence, as Shizuo's back shook.
- He's laughing?!
Izaya spluttered, withdrawing from Shizuo's back as if his cingulate cortex had told him he had just touched a hot iron –
A painfully hot iron.
"Why are you laughing?! What the hell, Shizuo?!"
- You force open my heart and then you laugh at me?!
Izaya's mind was whirling with confusion and anger, which rushed to his face in angry red.
"Stop laughing! You insensitive brute!"
He told himself he didn't sound like the girlfriend he had pretended to be.
WHO FUCKING KNEW –
That there's someone like me?
I never, EVER THOUGHT –
That there'd be someone who has the same feelings as me –
That understands rejection and loneliness the way I do
AND TO THINK IT'S NONE OTHER THAN THE FUCKING FLEA!
FUCKING FLEA, YOU REALLY DO SCREW EVERYTHING UP, DO YOU?
EVEN MY IMPRESSION OF YOU –
Ah damn it…..
I R EA L LY H A TE Y O U
To Shizuo, it was as if he had found a kindred spirit in his enemy –
- In Orihara Izaya.
It was almost a novel feeling.
"HAHAHAHA! THAT'S FUCKING HILARIOUS ALRIGHT!"
It was then that the flea spat out words, words that should make Shizuo concerned he had hurt a person's feelings –
But he wasn't, because Izaya was just a flea.
A lonely flea.
"HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!"
"HA HAH HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!"
Izaya underestimated Shizuo. He didn't know Shizuo had searched the dictionary for the meaning of the word he kept labelling him as.
And found out a 'protozoan' was a single celled organism, which didn't make sense to Shizuo who was biologically a human who had many cells in his body.
As usual, the flea didn't make sense.
Shizuo wondered if it was Izaya's loneliness that made him say things normal people wouldn't say.
But Izaya was still a flea. And so Shizuo didn't have to worry, didn't have to ask someone like Celty or Kasuka for advice on what to do if he hurt his so called girlfriend's feelings.
Not that Izaya was his girlfriend since Izaya wasn't even a girl – but his words and showing of emotion was almost as if he was Shizuo's girlfriend and Shizuo had just upset his girlfriend because he wasn't good with words –
But as Shizuo thought to himself before, he didn't have to care.
He didn't have to worry or feel insecure.
He didn't have to care at all –
Because Izaya was the flea.
And he had never cared about the flea.
But the flea was still there and not dead.
Shizuo didn't know much about relationships or romance. But he had often seen couples, a boyfriend and a girlfriend and the boyfriend would show, practically lavish affection on his girlfriend so he guessed that was what a girlfriend was for – someone to show affection to.
Someone to pay special attention to.
And ironically, he did pay special attention to the flea, even if the attention was negative –
Shizuo was pretty sure throwing vending machines and trash cans and sign posts –
Hurtling public property at a man who couldn't even reach his neck, was considered negative attention.
-In a fucked up way –
- IN A REALLY FUCKED UP WAY –
- I guess he's my 'girlfriend'
- …Ahhh, I'm really screwed up aren't I
- Having the flea as the closest thing to a girlfriend
With a grin to himself, Shizuo turned around, to face Izaya who was glaring at him, his face red in anger.
But there were no tears in his eyes, and so Shizuo thought he didn't have to worry about tears – as he would have to worry about with a normal girlfriend.
And so he grinned wider, and Izaya glared harder, glared and spoke.
"If you made me tell you my feelings just so you could fucking laugh at me, I swear I'll make you pay."
"Tch. I'm not like you, fucking flea. I had no such scheme in my head."
"Then why….the hell…..?"
Izaya spoke slowly, as if trying to control the emotions in his eyes.
In the unlikely but still possible case those emotions would turn to tears and ruin Shizuo's novel idea, Shizuo gave him his reply.
"I was amused, that we both have something in common. But you don't have to know, shitty flea."
As Izaya's glare intensified instead of receding and Shizuo took a moment to process his own blunt words, he thought he could see why Kasuka had told him he wasn't good with words –
Which he agreed with, which is why he reached out to pull Izaya to him.
The expression on Izaya's face was as if he didn't expect Shizuo's movement. Shizuo grinned at this.
He liked upsetting the expectations of the holier-than-thou flea – to put him in his deserved place.
"Whatever I say, you don't like my words. So this is better, right?"
"…..I hate you."
Izaya muttered, but his hands came to clutch at Shizuo's shirt, as his heart slowed down in relief.
Since Shizuo was right – the man in a bartender suit's hug told him he wouldn't leave, despite his hatred of whom he had deemed as the 'flea'.
And Izaya thought he deserved some relief from the sudden turmoil that had assaulted his heart in his chest, which was why he remained silent as Shizuo held him close –
And ruffled his hair in response to his words, saying nothing as if he understood how Izaya felt.
- Really, how is a brute like him so perceptive…
- ….Something in common huh.
His fingers tightened on the bartender shirt of the man who had the courage and honesty to say he was lonely.
Unlike the information broker who had been alone all his life but refused to acknowledge the information about himself unless he had to.
- Overturning all my expectations
- Making me feel like this
- Giving me no choice but to admit these bothersome feelings
- I really hate you, Heiwajima Shizuo.
He couldn't remember ever being held.
It almost felt as if he had been defeated –
As if, after all those years -
He had finally lost.
To Shizuo's own surprise, he felt no apprehension when Izaya clung on to his shirt.
Because it was just the flea clinging to him like the flea he was.
In fact, even though it was the flea, Shizuo felt something like gladness envelop his heart that someone was not showing any fear in close contact with him.
That they were not afraid even though they knew his arms around them could crush their bones.
That they were not afraid of him like they logically should be.
It made Shizuo feel an extraordinary sense of calm, as if he too had no reason to fear his own strength hurting the person.
And so he held the lonely flea who wasn't afraid of him and stroked the glossy black hair, smiling silently in his open but avoided heart.
After some time, Shizuo allowed Izaya to pull away from him. He watched as the flea looked at him.
"So, what now?"
"Does that matter?" Shizuo responded evenly.
"Huh? Of course it matters! In case you've forgotten, we're enemies, enemies don't just hug each other and comfort -!"
Izaya spluttered, his incredulity at Shizuo's calm reaction preventing him from finishing his sentence.
But Shizuo just shrugged, "I don't know." He said, "And I don't really care. I know your feelings, you know my feelings, can't we just make it up as we go along?" He shrugged again.
"Enemies or not, who cares what we are? As long as we don't do something crazy like fuck all of a sudden things happen for a reason and things'll happen as we go along."
"Shizu-chan has a dirty mind," Izaya said snidely, "But too bad for you Shizu-chan, I don't fuck monsters. I only fuck humans."
"Oh that's fine, Izayaa-kun, because this monster will be the one fucking you, eh?"
Red rose to Izaya's cheeks even as he said, "We'll see about that."
Shizuo just grinned, as if he enjoyed the light banter he had with the flea. "Will we?"
Izaya said, seeing the direction the conversation was heading in, a direction that brought more warmth to his cheeks.
Shizuo chuckled, and resisted from teasing the flea who was flustered at the notion of physical intimacy. Well, the flea was always so untouchable after all.
"Relax, I was kidding." He said, reaching out to take hold of Izaya's hand and raise it in the space between them.
"Oh Shizu-chan, if you wanted to hold my hand you could have just said so!" Izaya seemed to have recovered from his near embarrassment, as that annoying smirk was once again on his face.
Shizuo said absently. He turned Izaya's hand over, trailed his fingers over the back of the smooth hand, then turned it over again, touching his palm to the smaller hand.
He did this for a while, until Izaya said, "You know, I'd rather you crush my hand."
"I said shut up, didn't I?"
"…..In case your protozoic brain didn't get my meaning, stop doing whatever you think you're doing."
"Because it's weird! What the hell are you doing anyway? What's so interesting about my hand?!"
"I have no idea." Shizuo said honestly. "I just felt like doing it. I've never held someone's hand before."
Izaya was silent, and Shizuo raised his gaze. His gaze turned bemused.
"Flea, I'm only touching your hand. Why are you so embarrassed?"
"Only?" Izaya spat. He tried to tug his hand away but Shizuo held on. The warmth filled his cheeks. "You might be satisfying your curiosity Shizu-chan but normal people would consider doing – whatever you're doing as intimate!"
"But you're not normal."
"That isn't the point! Just let go of my hand already!"
Shizuo tilted his head as Izaya averted his gaze.
Perhaps the flea was more normal than he thought.
Suddenly feeling like the abnormal one, Shizuo reluctantly let go of Izaya's hand, which shot back to Izaya's side as if the flea was afraid he'd take hold of it again.
Knowing Izaya didn't want him to touch his hand, Shizuo leaned forward and ruffled his hair instead, only to have Izaya snarl at him like an angry cat.
"What are you doing now?"
"Touching your hair."
"Since I can't touch your hand, I decided to touch your hair."
Shizuo replied logically. Unfortunately, Izaya didn't appreciate his logic and pushed his hand away.
"Stop that! Why are you so touchy all of a sudden?!"
Shizuo felt annoyance build in him. He snorted.
"Me? What's with you, shitty flea? You ask me not to leave and you let me hug you, and when I touch your hand and hair you kick up a fuss? Isn't a hug more intimate? I've already touched your whole body and you complain when I touch your hand and hair? Tch, I really don't get you!"
Red rose to Izaya's cheeks – "T-That's different!"
- Because I'm no longer in control! Because of that stupid hug and your stupid words you stupid monster!
Izaya's thoughts sounded ridiculous even to himself. So he decided not to voice them and resumed glaring at Shizuo.
"You're being really emotional all of a sudden, damn flea."
- Anyone would be emotional in a situation like this!
- ….This is why I never allow anyone to hug me, it screws my head up.
Even though it was clear to Izaya that Shizuo was being honest in his words and truly didn't know why he was reacting in such a way, it was almost as if it was his plan.
It was almost as if Shizuo was getting his revenge –
For Izaya's face had never felt so hot until that moment in time.
Izaya cleared his throat, then continued on in a voice with deceptively less emotion –
"I'm not comfortable with people touching me, alright? That hug was just a spur of the moment thing, it's not as if I could get away from you, monster, so it doesn't mean anything. It doesn't give you the right to touch me –"
"I see….I thought since you aren't afraid of me I could touch you. I want to touch you. But I can't huh…"
Shizuo mumbled as if to himself with dejected eyes, causing Izaya to be slaw-jawed for a while before he shouted.
"Don't say things like that!"
"Huh? Why? I'm only telling the truth –"
"Even so, you can't say things like that!" Izaya looked away from Shizuo's searching eyes, "I-It's not fair!"
- It's like I'm the one at fault! Wait why am I even feeling guilty in the first place?! Shizu-chan is just –
Shizuo looked confused as Izaya panicked internally. He blinked and said, "I don't get it."
Izaya twitched, then hit him on the head.
Shizuo made a surprised sound, then rubbed his head with an annoyed look in his eyes.
"Oi flea, why did you do that for?"
"Because you were being stupid."
"Hah? How –"
"Even if I try to explain it to Shizu-chan, you won't understand so just take it as you're being stupid alright?!"
Shizuo blinked twice. Then, he slowly smiled in amusement as he caught sight of Izaya's flustered expression.
He caught hold of Izaya's wrist when he tried to hit him a second time, and pulled him close.
"Let go, Shizu-chan!"
"Nah, I don't want to."
- My flea girlfriend is quite cute.
The thought passed absently through Shizuo's mind as he grinned tauntingly at the struggling flea.
He raised his hand to block the knife towards his face.
The blade, which sunk only five millimetres into the monster of Ikebukuro's skin, flew away like a projectile into the night sky when Shizuo flicked his hand.
It soared through the dark sky, almost hitting and destroying the wing of an aeroplane, nearly impaling a bird who was trying to find its way back to its nest in the darkness and producing a squawk of surprise, and embedding itself into a tree trunk, causing the birds in the nest to jolt in fright.
But Shizuo didn't know nor care about the destination the knife had reached, as he jerked Izaya towards him and Izaya squeezed his eyes shut as if not wanting to see his lips meet Shizuo's –
Only to find his lips meeting something hard instead.
Izaya opened his eyes, and found that his face was shoved into Shizuo's shoulder.
"I'm not touching you. I'm holding you."
Shizuo said as if he thought his words would answer Izaya's unspoken question.
Izaya said as if he didn't know what else to say. Thankfully, his face felt at a normal temperature once again.
The shoulder he was resting on lifted up, then down. Izaya sighed, then relented as the monster held him close.
"Can't you do something more normal."
The words were said casually, almost lazily, but they got Shizuo thinking.
To be honest, Shizuo didn't know what to do. So he just did whatever he felt like doing. And he felt like holding the petulant, suddenly adorable flea.
But he was so awkward in relationships – wait were they even in a relationship?
….Well, since he had decided the flea would be his girlfriend for today as the flea himself had said, he supposed they were in a 'relationship' albeit a temporary one. Boyfriend-Girlfriend was a relationship, right?
…..So, Shizuo supposed they were in a relationship, what were normal things people would do in a relationship? A hug was normal, right?
So why was the flea still complaining?
- Tch, such a fussy flea.
Shizuo thought in annoyance. But then the flea seemed to snuggle a little into him and his annoyance faded away like the clouds at the arrival of night.
Shizuo tightened his grip on the flea who was trying to make himself comfortable against his shoulder, smiling a smile Izaya couldn't see.
- But the flea can be surprisingly cute too. Must be because he isn't spouting shitty words.
Shizuo thought idly as he held the flea. He couldn't help but think the flea – Izaya wasn't doing anything but letting him do as he liked. He complained, but he didn't resist. Shizuo might be a monster with inhuman strength but if Izaya really had not wanted him to touch and hold him, he would have put up much more of a fight. He would have struggled and resisted much more, instead of surrendering himself and his precious dignity to Shizuo's actions.
Had Izaya really disliked Shizuo's actions, he would have left. He wouldn't have stayed.
He wouldn't have wanted Shizuo to stay.
Shizuo mused at this. Did that mean the flea accepted him, accepted his actions?
Did that mean Izaya wanted him?
The warmth of hope filled Shizuo's heart at that thought.
Someone wanted him. Even if it was the flea.
Even if it was the flea, someone wanted him.
Someone could actually -
His brain was suddenly working, his mind racing at the possible notion –
"Shizu-chan, you're….crushing me."
Shizuo jolted slightly, surprised.
He said. Quickly, he loosened his grip and Izaya took the opportunity to dart out of his arms when they opened for him, brushing himself off with a grimace that dampened some of the warmth in Shizuo's heart.
It was as if he hadn't caught the flea.
"You want me to do normal things, right?"
"Huh? Well I'd rather you not do anything at all really, but of course normal things would be preferred to the weird things Shizu-chan did, but I suppose because Shizu-chan is a monster –"
"….What is it?"
Izaya asked almost cautiously, pausing in his usual belittling of Shizuo to look at him expectantly, almost warily.
Shizuo took a deep breath, then met Izaya's eyes and spoke –
Next chapter: Fireworks, Ferris Wheel and the Flea
"I'm not supposed to be here. Shizu-chan was supposed to lie and believe I can't do anything good so that I can laugh and then jump off and be chased by Shizu-chan until Shizu-chan's birthday ends…So why the hell am I still here with Shizu-chan?"
"I hate you too. I like your hair though."
"Girlfriends shouldn't be upset being called pretty and we both agreed you're my girlfriend today so suck it up shitty flea."
"Boyfriends should be more gentle with their girlfriends."
"Say to me what I want to hear. With my real name. Or I'll kiss you. Oh don't worry, this time I'll be really gentle.
I'll kiss you like you're my real, really pretty girlfriend. Isn't that reassuring, Izaya-kun?"
"Orihara Izaya here. While I know you are no doubt experiencing grief right at this very moment and though I'm amused by it, I'm busy right now with an important matter. And no, I don't care how much you want your revenge or my information. Your emotions are amusing but I suggest you make this quick. Didn't I tell you not to contact me today?"
"So, I can't change your mind, huh? You're just going to make all of us here wait while you have Shizuo all to yourself."
"What are you smiling about, Shizu-chan?"
"It's so much better when you don't talk."
"Shizu-chan kissed like a lover. I don't like it."
"Too bad. I like to do the things you don't like."
"Ugh, put that out, Shizu-chan! The smell is horrendous."
"You stink more."
"Such a monster, leaning back and smoking on top of the ferris wheel like you're on a park bench! Shizu-chan really is a monster!"
"Shizu-chan likes my hair? Is that why you haven't pulled out my hair with your monster hands? Wow, I'm so surprised."
"I like pretty things."
"But pretty things don't like Shizu-chan."
"Doesn't matter. I like them anyway. They don't have to like me back."
"Ah, how long has it been since I last called that guy?"
Hello again after 100+ days. Has it been over 100 days? Feels like it...
This was supposed to be posted earlier but the preview took some time. The next chapter will be really long, I feel like I'm not even half way through so I'm splitting it into parts. It should have about three or four parts and has Shizaya all around lol. Until you'll get bored of it maybe. I wrote some of it in the past, so it'll probably be easier to write than this chapter, which I started from scratch after a long break from this story.
Anyway sorry for the long wait, and thank you for the encouragement :) But like I said, I was studying and writing my other stories, I needed time for that. Well IJH reached the part where I wanted it to reach so I can go back to this :) Sorry to readers of IJH (It Just Happened), now I'll have to pause that for a while...lol. It's tough juggling stories...I also want to complete the drunk (not really) Shizuo story so I have less to juggle. Hmm.
Hope you enjoyed this chapter! :) Feels like we've gone one whole round. First it was Izaya's Plan and now that Izaya's plan has been revealed, it's time for Shizuo's Plan. Well Shizuo is definitely more simple minded than Izaya so his 'plan' will be simpler too. Too simple actually. To catch the flea.
See you in the next chapter ~