This is the end of twenty five, pathetic years...
His heavy lids closed. His lips parted. The last drop of his tears ran down to his hairline. He was dead.
If he was dead, why could he still hear the door banging. If he was dead, why could he feel his eyes trying to open up to look towards the noise. It was seriously breaking the peace of his sleep.
Through the thick flames, a dark silloutte came nearer. It came closer to him. And he felt something heavy and thick and cold wrap around him like he was a sushi roll.
"Ritsu? You with me?"
Ritsu narrowed his eyes but he could only see red and yellow everywhere.
"You're safe with me. Hold on."
He couldn't make it out. The man was wearing a mask. His huge like a fat man in red and shining yellow line against his chest. Ritsu's weak lids searched the eyes behind the mask. It was burning hazel hues he saw before everything turned white.
Ritsu turned to his left but the ticklish sensation wouldn't go away.
The feathery touch on his face was so light it felt like a dream. The softness of wherever he was felt like paradise. He was sure he was really dead. But the annoying ticklish sensation on his face was starting to get into his nerves.
He shot his green eyes wide only for him to shut them again. The bright light dizzied him.
"Agh~" he grunted aloud. The smell of something unfamiliar filled his nose. It didn't smell like alcohol or antiseptic. It smelled of antiquity.
He lifted his heavy hand on his face to slap whatever fly, or mosquito was bothering him. But instead, he caught a hand dancing ever so lightly on his scar.
Ignoring the pain from the bright lights, the brunette dared to open his eyes and saw a face he was familiar with and yet a stranger to him.
"Glad you're awake. You've been sleeping for 2 days straight."
Ritsu still have the fingers caught in his hand while roaming his pulsating pupils around the room. Three reddish suits where hanging on the wall. A black helmet full of scratches rested on top of an old cabinet. And trophies he couldn't make out for were lined up neatly on a shelf. To the other side of the room where books piled one after another. Even the floors had been occupied by numerous bounds of books. And at the lower side of the small window was a basket and a black cat cuddled in it.
"This...isn't the hospital isn't it?"
"No it's not. You're in my house."
Finally letting go of the wriggling fingers between his grasp, Ritsu's gaze fell on the exposed knee under the blanket and all the memory of the fire almost eating him up alive came back to him.
His worried eyes shot to the hazel eyes.
Before he could utter a word, the hand pestering his face patted his head. Strangely it calmed him.
"No and yes."
"What?" Ritsu uttered dumbfounded.
"No. You weren't the cause of the fire if that's what you are thinking. There was a faulty electrical wiring above the ceiling of the room to your left."
A relief rushed to Ritsu's features. Sighing, the brunette peeked once more at the man being so very kind to him.
"And the yes?" he asked meekly.
"The yes...I don't have any idea."
The man stood. That was the time Ritsu noticed the man barefooted walk around the room as if pacing.
"How did I end up here?" Ritsu again asked. Sizing up the situation, this guy was being too nice to him. What was the catch?
Takano turned to Ritsu with a grin. "Didn't I tell you that knowing my name would be handy for you?"
Trying to sit from his position, Ritsu stared at the man in the middle of the room.
"You were calling out my name during the fire. Honestly I shouldn't feel that way, but I was happy. And I would have taken more time to know where you were if you hadn't called out that loud. You could've really died."
The man didn't answer. Takano turned his back to leave Ritsu alone to get food. But Ritsu called out once more. "Why were you there?"
"It's my job. I'm a fireman, if it isn't that very obvious."
By the time Ritsu was completely healed, the brunette realized he'd been staying at the old house for five days straight already. He shared the clothes, the food on the table and everything in the house but never did he hear a single complain from the darkhaired man.
They'd eat in silence. Breakfast and dinner had become a ritual. But most of the day the man wasn't in the house and Ritsu was left alone to think things through.
Think about his life and his heart. He couldn't anymore.
He'd been stabbed in the heart too many times there was nothing left of his flesh for another knife to sink into. When he peered at the convenience store one time, he noticed it never opened again. His job had left him. He had no training or proper education. His apartment was now ashes. He had nowhere to go.
The more he thought of his situation, the more he suddenly realized that it might have been better to have been engulfed by the fire in the end.
Wearing the oversized pyjamas of the man he was burdening, Ritsu almost got a heart attack at the sudden continuous doorbell ringing.
His eyes searched the wall clock. Five in the afternoon. It was too early for Takano to be home by that time. Still, the brunette silently walked his way across the spacious living room towards the door.
"Takano-san?" Ritsu asked nervously. Doing this felt strange. Like he was actually waiting for the man to come home.
"Ritsu...it's me. Arashi."
It hasn't been long since they parted but Ritsu could see how much the man had lost weight. The two sitting across each other with the unevenly shaped center table in between them. It was Arashi who broke the silence.
"How have you been?"
"Unfortunately, still alive as you can see," the brunette smiled bitterly, his fingers dancing on his lap. "How about you and your soon to be baby?"
When Ritsu asked, he regret it. There was still a pain inside him.
"She had a miscarriage."
That one line froze everything in Ritsu's mind. What was he supposed to do with that information? Leap out of joy? Mourn? Most importantly, why was Arashi telling him this?
"Ritsu...come back to me."
Ritsu looked straight into the blue eyes before him. He could feel his blood boiling within him. His pulse started to race as his heart started drumming inside his chest.
"Is this a joke?"
The man who was wearing a black jacket, probably for mourning smiled sadly.
"I really wanted to make things work out between us. You have nowhere to go right? You cannot burden the owner of this house any longer than you already have. Besides Ritsu," the man looked desperate. "I miss you."
A lump started forming inside Ritsu's throat he felt like he'd suffocate. "You were able to toss me aside very easily Arashi, then you want me to come running to you since you are no longer going to be a father?"
The shaking hands took hold of the brown throw pillow on the sofa and came soon flying towards the blonde's direction. It landed on his shoulder.
"What do you take me for you freaking bastard!?"
Arashi just watched his ex-lover glare at him. He wasn't really expecting this to be easy. But he just thought that maybe, if Ritsu saw how serious he was, the man would forgive him for hurting him so much.
"Ritsu, don't you love me anymore?"
Both of them stood. The room seemed to be swirling around him, Ritsu felt nauseous.
His eyes full of hatred, the hatred he had for all the men who trampled him finally escaping the lid he tried heavily to shut. But instead of shouting, a low, heartfelt voice escaped his lips. It surprised Ritsu at how natural it rolled off his tongue.
"We're not meant to be together," the brunette whispered in a voice barely audible. Yet his emotions were all there every word felt so heavy towards Arashi.
Ritsu stared at the back of Arashi leaving. He wasn't sure for how long had he stopped breathing as he watched the back he clung to desperately before grow farther. He was seriously letting it go this time.
The moment the door clicked shot, his knees gave out. His trembling hand flew towards his mouth stiffling a painful cry.
"Thank you," was the last words Arashi muttered to the darkhaired man who was standing by the walls. "Take care of him for me."
Takano touched for the knob of the door. "You needn't to tell me."
Opening the door that had just closed moments ago, Ritsu's form was the first thing Takano saw. In the middle of his messy living room, there the brunette sat on the floor. Knees to his chest, his face buried on them. There was not a single cry he could hear but a silent, deep breathing like he was choking.
Slowly, he walked towards the man quietly like what a kid would to not scare a feisty cat away. He stood before the form and called out the name he really wanted to call ever since.
The red eyes gazed up. Confused at the first name basis. Confused at the gentleness. Confused at everything. All was so complicated he felt cornered, lost, helpless and alone.
"I am really glad you refused him."
"What are you saying?" the brunette spat for the first time. "Eavesdropping aren't we?"
Too bad for Takano, the irritation and anger the man seated on his floor seemed to be poured out on him instead.
The green eyes watched the tall figure bend his knees and seat before him. That time they were on eye level and the kind hazel eyes were peering straight to his soul. Ritsu felt unguarded.
"This is really bold of me but..."
In an instant, there was no other way for Ritsu but to stare ahead. Stare into space as the lips of his savior brushed his own softly. Ritsu wasn't even so sure what was happening anymore. Was he kissed? What happened?
His cheeks still being cupped gently by huge, rough hands, Ritsu stared dumbfounded at the man before him. The eyes, the honey colored eyes that gleamed despite the shadows stared back without faltering.
"What's this? You took me in because you wanted to screw me?"
"No. I kissed you because I love you."
At the words, Ritsu started laughing. From all the crazy relationships he had, this has got to be the funniest.
"Love me?" Ritsu slapped the hands away. "We met only a couple of weeks ago! Why don't you just tell me the truth that when you saw me being fucked in that dark alley, you think you could also do me?"
Takano's lips were in a thin line.
After Ritsu's delirious laughter that echoed through the entire house, the brunette pulled on a serious face. The ticking of the clock nearby sounded strangely loud. And then Ritsu sighed. His fingers started running down on the first button of his borrowed pyjama. His fingers clumsily, one by one unfastened the buttons. Slowly his flesh became exposed at Takano who didn't move an inch.
"Come on. I have no money. I couldn't repay you. I guess sex is the only way for me to repay your kindness."
Flesh hitting flesh filled the room. The hard slap on Ritsu's left cheek left him speechless. He looked at the floor holding his hot cheek not uttering a single word. The pain, it rattled inside him. Before he knew it, the tears he even didn't shed for Arashi dropped on the floor silently.
"Don't you make light of how I feel for you! If fucking you is the only thing I have in mind I would have done it when you were there sleeping soundly on my bed for two days! I wouldn't even care if you're conscious or not!"
It was the first time Ritsu heard the man raise his voice. It pierced every single nerve in his body. He didn't want to cry, but his eyes won't stop as he remained looking down on the floor.
"How do you expect me to trust you? You don't know how many men have told me they love me. But in the end they left me..." Ritsu mumbled to the floor. And abruptly he glared back at the hazel eyes watching him.
"WHAT MAKES YOU DIFFERENT FROM THEM!?"
The man being yelled at didn't say anything. It was as if he was just listening to the brunette pour out whatever he have inside.
"They filled me promises I know they wouldn't keep because I am stupid. I believed them anyway because I am stupid. I got hurt because I am stupid! I am so freaking tired of being toyed at! I don't want to be involved with anyone anymore, forever!"
Huffing at his outburst, Ritsu wiped his face with the back of his hand and gritted his teeth.
"You look like you have all the things in the world. You look good, you carry yourself well, why would you fall in love with me?"
"Why shouldn't I?" the voice countered. It was more calm now, like a lake undisturbed by even a leaf falling into it.
Ritsu faced Takano, not hiding anymore. The burden in his heart, he wanted to pour them out already. Or else he felt he would go insane.
"I don't have anything I can be proud of, I have nothing. I have NOTHING," Ritsu grabbed Takano's hand and led it to his cheek with the uneven, brownish skin. "This, I am so ugly," the look of someone who despised their own self flashed at Ritsu's green, now lifeless eyes. "Tell me, why should I believe that someone could love me like this?"
"The reality is I am just good for fucking. But not with real relationships. I've come to understand that when Arashi asked me to come back to him. He misses his fuck buddy."
"I am so tired of forcing myself to believe there is one who'd accept me like this. I am really, really, really tired."
Takano started once again to caress the scar on Ritsu's face. He looked at it intently, seriously. Not a mock can be hinted from his eyes it rendered Ritsu silent. He didn't know anymore how to handle Takano's strangeness like the man was fond of his scar.
"You're the most beautiful person I met."
Takano leaned closer. His lips resting warmly on Ritsu's skin licked by the fire when the brunette was still young. It made the green-eyed man shiver.
"You should be wearing your head up high and be proud," the deep voice whispered into his ears.
Although feeling weak, Ritsu tried to push himself away from Takano and felt his back hit the sofa lightly. His eyes not leaving the hazel ones, Ritsu smiled bitterly.
"Proud that I look hideous?" he asked with mockery. "You're really twisted aren't you?"
Clicking his tongue out of impatience, the older man lifted his black turtle neck off his body and tossed it on the floor. His finely chiseled muscles were plain obvious. But the very reality that the man had removed his shirt without so much as a thought in front of Ritsu, made Ritsu felt like he was going to be be finally raped anytime soon.
A sudden fear crossed his chest and he tried to stand and run only to sink back on where he was sitting.
"Look at me and listen carefully," Takano's voice was deadly serious. Ritsu could see the muscles on the man's chest grow tense.
Thumb caressing his scar on his face, while the other hand of Takano gripped him still on the shoulders to not let him escape, Ritsu's nervousness crawled in the entirety of his body. The gaze coming from the once kind and patient eyes was too much he wanted to gaze away but it was as if there was a hidden magnet making him stare back.
"I know you're wounded, physically and emotionally," Takano began. His voice low as a whisper, his thumb on Ritsu's scar gentle. "You try to hide them. You try to hide this scar, not wanting to show weakness. But Ritsu, I would consider them as a medal of honor."
"I don't get you..." was Ritsu's weak response. His brain was so muddled up with everything.
"Look at me," Takano ordered. And turned his back so that Ritsu would see it clearly.
A silent gasp escaped Ritsu's mouth. More than being afraid, Ritsu was shocked. To see a scar so uneven without a shape spread across the toned back of the man saying he loves him was unbelievable. It was terrifying.
Silence ate the words off of Ritsu's mouth. He didn't know what to make with Takano's scar.
"You still don't get it?" Takano asked, turning around once more. "If not for you, I must have been dead a long time ago."
Ritsu's expression turned from a baffled one to a face having a nightmare.
He was pulled back to a hazy memory of ten years ago. Being orphaned at a young age, he grew up in an old orphanage. He was always a happy child if not clumsy. Always getting scolded by the nuns but everyday was a playground to him.
Him being a curious boy loved wandering around the old premises. Even at the wing where older children stayed, he decided to break in. And one night, an explosion woke the entire orphanage. In a fleeting second, the darkness was enveloped by red. Screaming, shouting, dying.
He remembered running swiftly towards the exit. He was agile and fast. But a cry stopped him.
In one of the huge rooms was a boy pinned on the ground with a burning timber on top of his back.
Ritsu couldn't remember where he got the strenght. All he could remember was the fire on the timber reached out towards him and licked him on the cheek. It hurt he started to shed tears but he did everything to lift off the heavy timber off the boy.
The orphanage had been in a chaotic state after the fire. Some kids running away. And that included Ritsu. He thought that life outside of the orphanage was easy. But he was dead wrong.
He didn't know what had happened to the boy he helped. He left him in an ambulance outside and never looked back. His own injury left untreated.
Takano seemed suddenly tired. His hair fell on his face hiding what expression he had. Ritsu just stared into space as he felt the soft hair rest on his shaking shoulders.
"You're alive..." Ritsu muttered, his voice pained.
"I am. Because of you."
Ritsu just looked at the searching hazel eyes at him. His chest full of emotions he couldn't almost contain.
The rough hands touched the base of Ritsu's neck and they went up to the man's flushed cheeks. "I've been searching for you. You are the reason I chose this profession. I wanted to thank you but you were not in the orphanage anymore."
"When I was assigned here, I didn't complain at all despite being out of the city where I thought you'd be more likely to be. So the first time I saw you in the convenience store, I couldn't believe it."
Now, resting his forehead on Ritsu's, Takano's hand went down on the man's back, hugging the brunette for the very, very, first time. "I found you when I least expect it."
"Please believe in me. This time, you've finally met a man that will never ever make you suffer."
The arms around Ritsu was strong and it smelled of the scent of the rain. He could have been imagining it but Takano emitted the feeling of the calmness and the tranquility of rain on a cold night.
All the things that happened that day, the burst of hundreds of emotions and revelations tired Ritsu very much he found himself closing his eyes and resting his chin on Takano's shoulder.
The arms around the brunette grew tighter, but instead of being unable to breath, a warmth and a comforting feeling enveloped him as the two of them stayed in that way for a long while.
All judgements and rationality were swept away the precise moment Ritsu felt himself leaving the floor. He was so overwhelmed his chest was so full that he only buried his face on the strong shoulders that carried him towards the bedroom he had been using. With the light only coming from the lamp posts outside through the windows with it's thin curtains, it only intensified the dreamy, suffocating air of lust. The darkness only made the desire clearer.
Unlike being tossed on the bed with rapid movements, Ritsu felt himself being showered with light kisses on the face, on the neck like he was the most precious thing on earth that he started to whimper. He could feel how the man before him was trying to be patient for him.
His finger tips searched for the lenght of Takano's arms until he reached the hands grasping the sheet. Everything was hazy and he wasn't sure if he was still conscious or just dreaming. Such gentleness only appeared in his dreams.
"Takano-san," his soft voice was just like a breath to Takano who had leaned closer to listen carefully. His hands dancing on the soft strands of darkbrown in the darkness. "I am the kind who...who gives everything I have to anyone who promises me forever. But this time, if you end up being like them..."
The wetness on Ritsu's lashes was visible that Takano had the urge to kiss them away.
"If you end being like them...I swear I'll kill you first before comitting suicide," Ritsu declared with eyes shut. He looked like he must be joking. Even Takano had to laugh. But Ritsu just remained shaking under the comfortable weight on top of him.
"I'm sorry..." Takano muttered, his voice sounded like he was smiling. "You will never have the chance."
A month has passed since the fire. And within this month, Ritsu found himself being able to stand on his own surprisingly in a fast rate. He would still stay at Takano's house, but he found himself a new job.
He wasn't anymore the guy who cowered away when someone looked at his scar. He now wore them confidently. Like what Takano said, it was a symbol of triumph. A medal of honor to serve as a reminder that he was able to survive the harsh life until now.
He couldn't change that much in a short span of time but he was taking one step at a time. With Takano guiding and watching him.
The rain outside started to pour, making a background of noises for the two men entagled together in the shadows. Both naked not just in body but also in soul all for each of them to see. Their skin against each other felt so natural. As if it was an extension of their long lost self finally reunited.
No words uttered. No sweet nothings. All they wanted to tell each other was communicated by their own body languages.
Takano was always the one to lead. His mouth stealing Ritsu's breath away, not allowing the brunette to escape for just a second. His hands, rough and calloused by work, felt like sandpaper crawling on the soft, supple skin of his loved one. And it was only making Ritsu shiver from anticipation.
Hearing Ritsu pant under him just urged Takano to do more. He left Ritsu's now swollen mouth and traced the smoothness of his jawline down to the sweet neck where he kissed and sucked. Leaving traces of him that will show the word that Ritsu was only his alone. The sensation of being sucked at the nipples, while being stimulated in his painful erection made Ritsu arch his back. The pain was too much he wanted to scream. The flow of all the sensations on his body, pain, pleasure, everything was unbearable it was making him lose sanity.
He reached for Takano's neck and bit down hard on the man's shoulder. Takano only grunted but never stopped from what he was doing.
"Masamune...hurry..." Ritsu begged, biting down on the salty skin before him. Salty, a taste of sweat and Takano's scent just intoxicated Ritsu even more he started moving his hips. It was only a matter of time before he would also taste blood on it.
A kiss was planted on the tip of his nose instead.
"Be patient Ritsu..."
A shock wave strong enough to blurr his vision ran through Ritsu's spine as he felt something foreigh making its way into his opening. He was left clingling helpless on Takano.
Amuffled cry of pleasure was only Ritsu could muster as he was feeling being loosened up all the while his mouth being stuffed with Takano's probing tongue. Ritsu's toes started folding, his knees quivering, his entire body shaking.
"Shussh...just a little more Ritsu...I don't want you hurt..." the man, with raspy voice from lust said while sucking on Ritsu's tongue.
Despite 'not being hurt', Ritsu's erection was already painful like he'd burst any moment. Despite not being touched there, he'd gone hard alone just by all the tease he got from his bottom. Embarassing.
By the time Takano had his three fingers scissored inside the softness of Ritsu, Ritsu was already in a daze, crying.
"You're too gentle...you're too gently I can't take it..." Ritsu cried, burying the side of his face on the pillow.
"What you want to play S&M?" Takano whispered in Ritsu's ears.
"That's not it!" Ritsu exclaimed. "You're always to gentle with me...it's unbelieveble. It's scary."
Strong hands, gripped Ritsu's thighs and spread them as far as it could go. The touch of the burning, throbbing sensation in his waiting, twitching opening made Ritsu but his lip hard.
Hands on Ritsu's hips, Takano showered more of his gentle kisses on Ritsu's collarbone. "Didn't I tell you this time you are with the right man?"
There was no time to answer. The thing Ritsu was waiting for was already inside of him throbbing, expanding, molding his insides into its shape. And he didn't hate it one last bit. It was always so different with Takano. He never felt pain. Or perhaps his pain was transformed into pleasure even before it took place. They both remained connected while sucking the life out of each other. Allowing Ritsu to adjust at his hardness, at his size.
Licking the sweat on Ritsu's chest, Takano pushed forward. "I'm going to move now, Ritsu..."
The cries and grunts of pleasure echoed through the night. The rain pouring so harshly outside the house, hitting the brick roof, making a rythmic enchanting noise. But the fire inside that room and inside themselves just got stronger and more vivid.
chapter end notes:
Hello. thank you for reading this long shot. i tried to be as mature as possible in this. not about mature content...lol..i mean how characters acted in the midst of problems and situation. not too much fluff too coz love isn't always fluffy and that's what i tried to explore in this fic.
as for smex. it's been a while since i wrote one and since i am getting rustic, i just tried to play with words instead of actually describing what they're doing! hehehe
i hope you enjoyed it the least bit. the theme was calming for me. ^^
please tell me what you think. this is my first attemT for a one shot. it ended up a longshot though. pfft.^^