Chapter 1: Stolen keys
Sitting on a chair, a red-head hummed a summer song, his fingers agreeably strummed his Nylon strings. His eyes were shut, feeling all its lovable essence. Craving for it to take better shape, his mouth slithered as the notes spread all over the room.
Could it be this?
The stories in your eyes
Tell of silent wings
You fly away on
"Oto-" His feet stopped, enjoying the view of his lover, carefree, playing his instrument. Leaning against the doorway he too closed his eyes, smiling.
"Hum?" Tokiya stepped close to the guitarist, pecking his cheek.
"What were ya doin'?"
"Listening to you. What were you playing?"
"Seven days in sunny june, from Jamiroquai. Ya know them?"
"I heard." Reaching a bag, he shifted to the entrance door, waiting for the other to come. "Have you finished packing?"
"Humhum." *Zeeeeep!* Otoya closed his small bag, lifting it to his shoulder and passed by his lover, still standing at the doorway. "We haven't seen them in some time, it'll be fun!"
"I wonder how they are doing."
"Are you sure you didn't forget anything? We won't be able to return once we are in the cab." He closed the door behind him.
"One thousand per cent sure~" The red-head joked pecking Tokiya's cheek, receiving a smile.
It had been six months since they debuted. After performing some times and advertise their recently formed band - photo shoots, interviews, autograph sessions and whatnot - ST RISH had a three-month break. In spring they would join Haruka in the Master course but they still had some batteries left to recharge. Aside from it, they were apart for two months, far too much for them to handle. That was why the bunch was going to spend an unbroken weekend at Syo's house. Finally, men quality time.
Many things happened while those months went by. Otoya moved into Tokiya's house, since they were in a relationship and shared a room in the academy, it didn't make sense for them to live in different houses. If Saotome ever asked something about it, they were sure they would make something up. Masato and Ren encountered each other several times and were now facing a new beginning, as a couple. Natsuki, with much insistence, was finally able to slip a ring around Syo's finger, both wanted it for a while though Syo never showed it. They didn't know when they would marry but neither care, for now at least, and the day they begin the Master course would hide, much to their dismay, their engagement rings.
All were too well aware of the rules: "if you love, you're fired" but they would hide their secrets with their lives. Maybe one day Haruka would know about it, perhaps someday they would change the rules but it was too soon for that. They still were educing their path through the music industry.
"Welcome, Ittoki-kun, Ichinose-kun." A blond greeted as he opened the door.
The red-head's face bended in bewilderment. "Tokiya, why isn't Syo wearing a hat? And why did he call us by our surnames? Could it be…?"
"Because I'm his younger brother, Kaoru." A chuckle flew to the air.
"Ah! That's why, it all makes sense now!" Rubbing his hair, the boy smiled apologetically.
"Nice to meet you two, it was about time!" The smaller beamed, bowing.
The red-head quickly curved. "Call me Otoya, my friend's brother 's also a friend of mine!"
"Nice to meet you." The bluenet dedicatedly bent. "You can call me Tokiya."
"Come in, come in! Syo 's waiting for you in the living room."
"What 'bout Nacchan?"
"He is busy, arranging something for you but we don't know what it is…"
"Food." Tokiya guessed, an ache already filling up his stomach.
"No." He shook his head. "We chained the kitchen. But come!" Kaoru signalled them to step in.
They, especially the bluenet, noticed how everything was clean and tidy as they walked in. Fashionable was the better word to describe how the place looked like but it wasn't a big surprise, they were at Syo's house after all.
"Otoya, Tokiya, hey!" Jumping off the sofa, the blond met his friends in a rush.
"Hey, Syo!" Otoya punched the blond's fist.
"How are you?" The bluenet, by the red-head's side, asked.
"Great, I was watchin' TV, make yourselves at home guys!" He exclaimed, pointing to the two mini-couches beside the one he was seated moments ago.
A cup of fresh tea was settled on the coffee table between three couches. Meters ahead the bigger one, a modern shelf leaned against the wall. Inside of it, a plasma displayed any program while big and tiny blue squares mixed with décor around it. Statues, photographs freezing happy memories. Two small blonds smiling. Seven people surprised and amused at the same time, sitting at a restaurant table as Natsuki pushed Syo's face onto their birthday cake. Many others displayed heart-warming feelings and memories, all enlightened by a large window gifting the rest of the room with light and delight.
"I head you to moved in together." Syo leisurely sat.
"We did." Tokiya smiled to his ex-classmate as he sat on a mini-couch, Otoya sat beside his boyfriend, on the sofa's arm.
"Congrats. Remember to invite us some time, we can throw a party there." He winked.
"We also have to congratulate you for the engagement."
"Thanks!" Syo rubbed his head's back.
"Ya planned a date yet?"
"Nah, not yet but we won't leave ya waitin' for a long time."
"Ya better don't. Hey, Tokiya what 'bout us?"
"Us?" The bluenet looked to his boyfriend questioningly.
"Ya made me a proposal two days ago."
The bluenet looked away for a second. "That can't be possible."
"Why not?" A hopeless pout formed.
"I would remember it." He said, sounding matter-of-facty.
"But ya did. We were at home, it was after dinner."
"We were drunk."
"Ah, so you remember!" He smiled. "The-"
"Proposing when you're drunk doesn't count." He pinched Otoya's nose. "And trying to lie about it doesn't count either."
"Fuuuu…." Otoya puffed his cheeks. "Damn, I can never fool ya…"
"No." The air the boy was retaining left noisily as Tokiya's finger pushed his cheek. "You can't." Kissing it lovingly afterwards. "I know you too well."
"Geez, you're too lovey-dovey to my tastes."
"Haha!" The red-head rounded his lover's shoulder. "Hey…" He whispered to Syo. "Does your brother know 'bout your engagement"?
"Of course I know, I'm his brother!" Kaoru, accompanied by two other people promptly answered, sitting beside his brother.
"Hello everyone." Masato and Ren stepped near the bunch. "We haven't seen each other for a long time."
"Hey, Ochibi-chan, Ikki, Ichii."
"Ren…." The smallest boy growled, rolling his eyes.
"Take it easy, Syo! Ren-kun's just kidding." Kaoru shook his hands as a droplet of sweat run down his face.
"Where is Natsuki?" Masato asked as he and Ren sat on the couch opposite to the other couple.
"Kaoru-kun said he was doin' something but no one knows what." Otoya turned to his friend, interested. "Syo?"
"I'm scared of what he might be doin'… Better check on him."
"Ochibi-c-" Azure eyes glared to Ren mortifyingly as he stood up. "Where do we put our stuff?"
"In your rooms, but 'cha can leave them here for now."
"Alright. We'll sleep in Ochibi's room!" Ren teased.
"No." The violinist snarled. "I'll go check on Natsuki."
His hand would touch the handle if it wasn't for Natsuki suddenly opening the door, resulting on a red mark all over the smaller boy's face.
"Hi everyone! Huh? Syo-chan…? Your face…why…?" He inspected the door, slowly understanding the crime he committed.
Bit by bit the boy's body descended until his back slammed the tiles.
"Syo!" Everyone shouted.
"I'm fine…" He pulled his hat back onto his head, sitting up, but then a red waterfall majestically slid through his nostrils.
"Wow…never saw a cascade of blood before." Otoya looked at his friend in awe.
"What the hell?! Nasuki, gimme a tissue, gotta dry this."
The criminal's concerned hand quickly slid inside his pocket, taking Pyo-patterned tissues off. "Here ya go."
"What were ya doin' by the way?" The boy asked as he rolled his eyes, taking the paper from his fiancé's hand.
"Nothing." He grinned.
"That's suspicious." Syo frowned.
"Aw, don't be like that, Syo-chan!" The older's arms squeezed the blond in a deadly hug. "Guh! That…makes…it…more…suspicious…!" He managed to speak before passing out, a small ghost leaving his mouth.
Otoya was concerned about his band member yet all those happenings were too much for him. His eyes shut, splattering tears all over the others, rolling and laughing incessantly on the floor.
"You can never be serious now can you, Otoya?"
"I know I-I shouldn't be laughing b-but… this was so hahhahaha!"
"Haa…" Natsuki, let him go at once, Ren get me a glass of water, Masato and Kaoru-kun help me taking him to the sofa…"
"What about me?" Rhe red-head wallowed near his lover, an invisible tail wagging behind him.
"Huh? Oh, come on! Why?"
"You are too busy laughing."
"But'cha gotta admit all that was kinda funny to watch." Otoya followed them, slapping his friend's face smoothly as soon as the body rested on the sofa.
An hour later, after his brother's wakening, Kaoru left the house saying he had a friend to visit. Yet he was worried about his brother, Natsuki might involuntarily assassin his lover… again…But he was a grown boy and the others were there in case he needed help. And he did, hours later when tried opening the room's doors, apparently locked, their keys were missing. The culprit…
"I swallowed them." Emerald eyes closed childishly as Natsuki grinned widely.
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