With a frustrated grunt, Rin rolled over for possibly the hundredth time that night in another futile attempt at finding a comfortable position in his sleeping bag. He had no idea what time it could possibly be, but it felt as though he'd been vainly fighting to fall asleep for hours. But through the thin material of the tent, he could tell that the sun had not yet begun to rise.
It had been Kou's idea to go on a camping trip. The girl had insisted that her friends needed a break from their repetitious daily activities, and naturally, she ended up dragging her older brother along with them. Rin never had found it easy to turn down her requests. He came reluctantly, just to keep her happy.
Haru had initially been unwilling to come as well. However, the very second Kou mentioned that there would be plenty of lakes and ponds to swim in, he'd jumped on the opportunity.
The corner of Rin's mouth twitched upward into a brief smirk. Typical Haru.
He shifted his bright red gaze to the right in order to observe the other boy. Haru slept soundly in the opposite side of the tent. Each of his limbs were sprawled out in all directions, and he was only half covered by his sleeping bag. His mouth hung open slightly. Listening carefully, Rin could hear him snoring very faintly.
Rin stared longer than he originally intended to. He envied how peaceful and comfortable Haru looked. The first night in the woods was already a living nightmare; Rin doubted he would last for the remainder of their outing.
Dragging his eyes away from Haru, Rin tried once again to fall asleep, but to no avail. He sat up with a grunt, sighing miserably. It wasn't the constant hum of the crickets that kept him awake, nor was it the hard, earthy ground, but was simply the lack of a pillow. He could have sworn he'd grabbed one before he left home.
He debated staying awake for the rest of the night, but that would do him no good. Kou would undoubtedly pester him about it in front of the others, and that was the last thing he needed. Rin fell back with a huff and stared blankly at the tent that loomed over him. Eventually, his attention returned to Haru.
An idea appeared out of nowhere that could potentially save him from this painfully restless night. What if…?
He scowled. It was a stupid idea. It's not like Haru would allow it.
Or would he?
Rin turned onto his side so he was facing the black-haired boy. Summoning all his willpower, he mumbled, "Haru?"
Haru did not stir.
Frowning, Rin persisted. "Haru."
This time, Haru awoke, but he did not open his eyes. He stretched, letting out a small groan as he did so, and asked, "What, Rin?"
Rin hesitated. He hadn't thought this part through. Idiot!
One of Haru's cobalt blue eyes slid open and scrutinized him closely. He waited quietly for Rin to speak.
A handful of seconds ticked by before Rin finally muttered, "I can't sleep."
Haru stared at him. He understood Rin's situation rather quickly; back when he and the others were in elementary school, they'd had sleepovers every now and then. Rin had always been the heaviest sleeper and was the first to pass out whenever the group attempted to pull an all-nighter. Nothing would keep him awake then, not even music that was blaring at full volume or constant chatter. As long as there was a pillow beneath his head, Rin could sleep through anything. It appeared that Rin had forgotten to bring a pillow on their trip. How he managed to forget one was a mystery to him.
Some things never change, Haru mused. "I don't have a pillow, either," he murmured, yawning. "So I don't know how to help you."
Rin gazed at him in silence. His face reddened and he broke eye contact. "Right. Never mind," he grumbled, hastily turning his back to Haru. "I'm not a little kid anymore. I can sleep without one."
Haru stared at him again, blankly; if that were true, Rin wouldn't have woken him up in the first place. "You're a pain," he murmured softly. He edged over to Rin until they were less than a foot apart.
Rin felt his temper bristle like the spines of a porcupine, and he turned over to face Haru, to question his words – only to see the boy's face precariously close to his. His eyes widened in astonishment. "What-"
"You'll be up all night if you don't use something as a pillow," Haru said. "Your constant tossing and turning kept me up long enough when we first went to bed, and I don't want to deal with that again."
Rin's shocked expression morphed into a grimace. "Haru, I don't-"
Haru pulled Rin even closer to him. Once his burgundy-haired rival was situated snugly against his body, he closed his eyes and mumbled, "Shut up and go to sleep, Rin."
Rin's mouth suddenly felt dry. He swallowed, feeling the blood rush to his face again. Whether it was from embarrassment or something different, he wasn't sure. "Fine," he said tersely. Quite awkwardly, he rested his head on Haru's chest. It was far more comfortable than he expected, and was surprisingly warm. He could smell the faint scent of chlorine on his body. Haru's heart pounded in a steady rhythm that made Rin drowsier with every passing second.
Ba-dump, ba-dump, ba-dump.
Rin sighed contently. He was fast asleep in mere minutes.
Kou ducked out of her tent, rubbing her eyes sleepily. The girl shivered as she stepped into the chilly outdoors. The campsite was empty, save for the weakly smoldering bonfire from the previous night. The sun shone brightly between the trees, sending beams of orange light slicing through the early morning mist.
Rei would love to see this, she thought. It was a beautiful sight.
She didn't have to wait long. Rei came stumbling out of his tent minutes later, still half asleep, his glasses sliding down the bridge of his nose. "Morning, Kou," he greeted, pushing the glasses up to their proper position.
She smiled. "Good morning, Rei. Sleep well?"
"More or less. Nagisa kept kicking me in his sleep."
Nagisa peeked out of the tent drowsily. "I did not," he protested. Yawning hugely, he turned his head towards Kou and said, "Hi, Gou-chan."
Kou's smile dissolved into a pout. "It's Kou."
"Hey, everyone," Makoto said, emerging from another nearby tent. Out of everyone standing in the campsite, he appeared to be the most well-rested. Makoto's eyes explored the area for a moment. "Are Haru and Rin awake yet?"
"Guess not," Kou said. "I'd better wake them up; we have a lot to do today."
But as the girl partially unzipped the flaps to their tent and peeked inside, ready to rouse them both, she paused.
Haru and Rin were snuggled comfortably together in the center of the tent. Rin's head was on Haru's chest. One of his arms was draped across his body, and fingers on one of Haru's hands were entwined in Rin's hair. The two boys were still in a deep sleep.
Kou smiled tenderly at the sight and carefully zipped the tent closed. Letting them sleep for a few more minutes won't hurt anybody, she decided.
A/N: This is my first Free! fic. I hope you enjoyed! :'D Rin/Haru is my OTP for this show, I love them both and just had to write something of them aaaa
Expect Rei/Nagisa fics in the future. I ship them as well and have some ideas rolling around in my head.