Title: Holiday Lights
Rating: M (for explicit references)
Disclaimer: I do not own One Piece.
Spoiler warning: No spoilers, other than it takes place post time-skip.
A/N: Written for kumiko-sama-chan's first annual zosan holiday exchange, in which 31 different authors release a holiday/winter themed zosan story for each day of December. For the rest of the fics, check out kumiko-sama-chan on tumblr or search "zosan christmas exchange."
What a complete and utter catastrophe.
Sanji wanted to lash out at Zoro in frustration, but really, it was entirely his own fault. He was the one who had let that gorgeous woman get the best of him.
She was clearly an enemy, and whatever she planned on doing to him was doubtlessly going to make him suffer—but the cook did nothing to prevent it. Even if he had wanted to (and he didn't—she was far too ravishing for him to resist), he was simply incapable of telling a dazzling woman no. And so, when she reached into a small pouch provocatively dangling from her shapely hip, and hurled a handful of some kind of powder in his eyes, he didn't even try to look away from the eyeful of cleavage she thrust in his face as she did it.
At first it felt like nothing more than sand in his eyes; painful, a little troublesome, but nothing that would completely debilitate him. But as the fight progressed, and all of their enemies were subsequently defeated, Sanji's eyes started to burn, and the sunlight pouring down the sky and reflecting off of the white blanket of snow on the ground seemed to inflame his retinas.
By the time he and the swordsman had retreated to the woods, Sanji could barely open his eyes. Everything was coated in ice and snow, and even in the shadows of the trees, the sunlight made everything shine with a dazzlingly bright brilliance.
After only a few minutes of running, his head ached, and he found himself covering his eyes with his hand, trying to block out the agonizing white luster. He cursed loudly as he tripped over rocks and tree roots, buried beneath the snow, trying his best to make his way forward despite being virtually unable to see in front of him.
Of all of his nakama he could be stuck with, it had to be the shitty marimo; the idiot who couldn't tell the difference between east and left. Without Sanji's guidance, how the hell could Zoro navigate them anywhere?
Once they had covered some distance, they slowed to a walk.
"Ah, it's snowing," Zoro said suddenly, stopping in his tracks.
Sanji tried to peek at him through the hand he was cupping over his eyes, but it was just too bright.
"All the more reason for us to hurry up," Sanji said with frustration. "Come on, we need to find the Sunny, or at least shelter, before it gets worse."
As they kept walking, the temperature began to plummet, and the wind started to howl with a fierce intensity.
An hour passed, and the snow began to fall more heavily.
Sanji hadn't uncovered his eyes for some time now. His head throbbed with an unprecedented ache; he couldn't ever remember having a headache that seemed to encompass his entire cranium, with the forefront of the burning pressure right in his eyes. It was undoubtedly from whatever the hell the woman had thrown into his eyes, making him so inordinately sensitive to light.
But it was also making matters worse that they were probably lost. Sanji was completely flipped around and had no idea what way was what. And dammit, he knew he couldn't trust the marimo to get them in the right direction... His only hope was that, at least if they moved, they had the chance of finding someplace habitable.
"We keep passing caves," Zoro mentioned, breaking a lengthy silence between them. "It's getting worse out here. We should wait it out inside of one of them."
Sanji stopped abruptly. "We keep passing caves?" He repeated incredulously.
"Ah, this is the fifth one."
The pounding in his head rose to a blinding crescendo. He lost his footing for a moment, one knee landing in the snow with a crisp, crunching noise, the coldness instantly permeating the fabric.
"Just tell me it's not the same cave."
He was met with silence.
"Oi. Answer me, marimo."
"It's a damn cave, how am I supposed know?" The crunch of the swordsman's footsteps in the snow drew closer to him. Unexpectedly, a strong arm wrapped around him, wrenching his body upright. "But let's go in it. It's snowing so hard, I can barely see in front of me anymore, and you look like hell."
Sanji wanted to argue; the unbearable urge to just lash out at Zoro, to take out all of his frustrations, was simply overwhelming. But the truth was, his head throbbed so hard, he thought he might vomit, so with gritted teeth, he let Zoro drag him out of the storm.
He would not have thought it possible for him to sleep in such conditions, but once he was enveloped by the darkness of the cave, an unbearable pain still surging through his cerebrum, Sanji quickly slipped into a dreamless and unrestful sleep, his body ungracefully slumped against the wall.
Sanji awakened to the feeling of a hand brushing against his chest. With a start, he sat upright, reaching out to grab whoever had been touching him.
His hands met a strong forearm, muscles obvious even through the bulge of a parka sleeve.
"The hell are you doing, shitty swordsman," Sanji muttered, slowly pulling his hand away. He noticed he couldn't see a damn thing; then he realized it was absolutely freezing in the small cave. Instinctively, he hugged his arms around himself.
"Give me your lighter."
"Just hand it over," Zoro grumbled. "I got some wood, so I'm going to start a fire."
"Oh. Why the hell didn't you say so to begin with?" he asked with irritation, blindly digging around in the front pocket of his coat. "Here, marimo."
As Zoro set to work, presumably lighting the fire, Sanji reached up and realized there was a piece of cloth tied around his eyes. Even in the brisk cold, he caught a faint whiff of the scent of steel on it. "Oi, what's this?" Sanji asked.
"To block out the light. Just leave it on, it's still bright outside."
"Tch, I bet I'm fine now," Sanji said, peeling it back slightly. Yet even in the shadowy cave, rays of sun penetrated the darkness like lasers, making his retinas burn. "Dammit," he cursed, squeezing his eyes shut as he pulled the mask back over his eyes.
"What'd I tell you, dumbass cook," Zoro called out languidly.
Sanji wanted to retort, but he was too preoccupied with clutching the side of his throbbing head. Even that meager light was enough to once again make his head feel like it would split open.
A pained expression on his face, he groped at his jacket pocket for his pack of cigarettes, sticking one between his teeth with a trembling hand.
"Give me back my lighter," he said lowly, once he could feel the other man's presence near him again.
The swordsman sank in next to him. Sanji impatiently held out his hand, waiting.
"Oi, are you going to do that when you can't even see what you're lighting?"
Sanji scowled. "How many cigarettes do you think I've lit in my life, marimo? I can handle it."
"Tch, I'll do it."
"I'm lighting it now. Suck in or whatever."
"The hell is wrong with you..." Sanji muttered. But feeling the flame near his face, he puffed on the cigarette, satisfaction washing over him as the smoke filled his lungs.
After a few drags, Sanji felt his splitting headache start to subside slightly. At least now he could think a little bit more clearly.
He could feel the heat from the fire slightly raising the freezing temperature. After a few moments, he also became aware of a more troublesome warmth to his left.
"Oi, aren't you a bit close, shitty swordsman?"
"It's fucking freezing in here, just deal with it."
"How long was I out, anyway?" the cook asked somberly.
"A couple hours, maybe."
Sanji sighed heavily, leaning his head back, his cigarette loosely hanging at the corner of his mouth. "So it's still awhile till sunset."
"It sounds pretty bad out there," Sanji commented, as the sound of howling winds echoed throughout the cave.
"Ah, but it's dying down."
"That so. Then maybe it'll be over when the sun's down... I'll be alright by then," Sanji muttered, taking a long drag on his cigarette.
Zoro didn't say anything else, though. Despite the fact that the two men spent unruly amounts of time arguing with one another, the green-haired man wasn't really much of a conversationalist. If Sanji couldn't feel the heat from his body radiating toward him, and hear the swordsman's slow and steady breathing just a short distance away, he may have thought he wasn't there at all.
The throb in his skull continued to pulse painfully. When he finished the cigarette, he ashed it on the ground of the cave next to him, and held his hands up to the crown of his head, hoping he could somehow alleviate the pressure if he pressed the right point. It was a futile gesture.
In the back of his mind, Zoro noted that his jaw hurt slightly; he had been clenching his teeth for some time now. This kind of situation made him feel uneasy. He glanced over at Sanji frequently, noticing that even with his eyes covered, the cook was making obvious grimaces of pain as he periodically reached up to clutch at his head.
And then suddenly, he heard a quick sliding noise, followed by the sensation of something slumping against his shoulder. Blinking in surprise, he turned his head and saw that Sanji had fallen asleep again. Even his sleeping face looked like it was in pain.
"Oi, get off me, cook," Zoro muttered lowly. The other man didn't stir, however; in fact, the only movement Zoro felt was a faint shaking sensation.
Slightly surprised, he glanced down at the blonde man again. Although it was barely noticeable, he could just barely make out a slight trembling of his thin body; he was shivering.
Zoro frowned deeply, realizing that the other man's coat was actually quite thin. His wasn't much better, but he had a high tolerance to freezing temperatures from training. The cook, however... His slender body seemed to have so much less mass to it to keep in the heat.
"Tch, dumbass cook, you should've worn a thicker coat," he said.
The blonde head twitched slightly, and Zoro felt surprisingly silky blonde hair brush his cheek. He started in surprise.
But then, his expression softened slightly, and he reached out his arm and wrapped it around Sanji's shoulders. "You better feel okay by the time you get up, curly-brow. I don't want to sit in a damn cave with you all night."
Sanji awakened with a gasp.
He clenched his fist; what an inappropriate place to have such a lecherous dream... That kind of pleasurable, lustful dream that left his body filled with a sort of needful, aching warmth in his core that still lingered long after he had awoken.
Although his mind was a little bit muddled, between the chill on his lower back and ass from sitting on the hard stone ground, and the faint heat of the fire barely reaching his cold nose and cheeks, he quickly recalled where he was.
But to his surprise, there was an unidentified warmth around his shoulders that he hadn't expected. He shifted slightly, and realized that he was resting his head on something very comfortable.
And then, he realized what that sensation was; the warmth of a human body. The remnants of lust from his untimely dream seemed to renew. Unthinkingly, he raised a hand upward, reaching out for the figure holding onto him so firmly.
...And then a shudder, far more violent than any temperature could have caused, raked through his body. With budding horror, he realized there was only one other person in the cave with him—and that man should not have ever invoked that pull of lust down beneath the layers of his clothing, no matter how desperate he was.
Sanji tried to pull away, but in addition to the swordsman's stupidly strong arm wrapped securely around his shoulders, Zoro's head was also tilted across his own, his square jaw lightly pressing into Sanji's forehead.
"Oi, marimo, what the hell are you doing?" he said loudly, trying his best to smooth out the panic in his voice. The fact that he was still blindfolded was probably contributing to his rising hysteria; he wondered if he could remove it yet, and if the sun had gone down. But more than anything, he had to get away from this hazardous predicament.
To his surprise, the swordsman suddenly let out a small gasp. Sanji's heart felt like it briefly stumbled in his chest; it was just a slight sound, but it was uncharacteristically high compared to the other man's usual baritone voice, and somehow, it sounded a little bit... erotic.
Sanji started to feel heat rushing to parts of his body that had no business being warm in the frigidness of the wintery cave. He tried to struggle to free himself again; this time, Zoro began to stir.
"About damn time, shitty swordsman," Sanji muttered.
"—while you're doing that to me," Zoro mumbled, his words barely audible.
"Hah? Doing what to you?" Sanji asked. But as Zoro grumbled a few more incoherent words, he realized the other man must have been talking in his sleep.
Gradually, Zoro started to awaken, and Sanji impatiently dug an elbow into the other man's ribs, trying to speed up the process. Finally, he felt the other man's head pull away from his own.
Sanji was breathing a bit harder than he should have been. The cook tried to urge his racing heart to slow, but suddenly, he felt a powerful hand grab his jaw.
"Oi, cook," Zoro breathed, his low voice startlingly close to Sanji's face. "Your face..."
"What the hell are you talking about?" Sanji asked nervously. With the blindfold, he couldn't see the swordsman's face, but that breathy tone was unlike anything he had ever heard come out of the swordsman's mouth.
"You're red," he said, the hand along his jaw traveling up to his cheek, sending another shiver down his spine.
"Hah? Probably because we're in a damned freezer," Sanji shot back.
"But you're breathing really hard," he continued, the low intonation of his voice drawing nearer to his ear.
"Yeah, I bet you are, too, shitty marimo."
He laughed shortly. "Ah, probably." Suddenly the hand slipped down to Sanji's shoulder, and he tightly clenched the fabric of the cook's coat.
"What are you..." Sanji started to ask, but his voice faltered as he realized he had started to raise a hand upward, unconsciously reaching toward the other man. Cursing inwardly, he wondered what the hell was wrong with him. He didn't understand why he was feeling this damned magnetic pull toward the swordsman...
But Zoro sure as hell wasn't helping. Rigid fingertips made their way from his shoulder, down the front of his chest, tracing firmly across the front of the fabric; a touch so close, yet so far away.
He couldn't take it anymore; he had to see what kind of face the swordsman was making while he was doing these things. He didn't know if this was his idea of a gag or a practical joke, but just hearing the hitch in his breath as a second hand reached forward and grazed the side of his cheek made him wonder if Zoro was feeling the same unreasonable desire as he was.
Before he could remove the blindfold, a cold, calloused hand abruptly covered the top of his hand, fingertips wrapping around the inside of his palm. "It's still bright out," Zoro said. "The sun will be down soon. Try it then."
"I don't care, I'm trying to see what you're up to," Sanji protested.
"From the looks of it, the same thing as you, ero-cook."
"What's that supposed to mean, shitty swordsman?"
"You probably won't forgive me if I explain it to you," Zoro said carefully.
"I have no idea what you're talking about, shitty mari—"
Sanji was instantly silenced as a mouth crushed against his own; he let out a muffled gasp of surprise.
The lips were rough and demanding, unlike any mouth he had ever felt before. And yet, that connection sent an unrivaled flood of anticipation through his lips and tongue. Suddenly uncaring of the consequences, he hungrily kissed back, moaning in pleasure as a forceful tongue made its way into his mouth.
The feeling of the soft, warm tongue lightly brushing his gums, the roof of his mouth, the side of his tongue; it made him shudder again, his body starting to tingle in expectation. He felt the swordsman pluck loose the top buttons on his coat and slide an eager hand inside. The slight rush of cold that hit his chest was nothing compared to the exciting rush of heat as he felt hands touching him through only his thin layer of clothes underneath.
A strange feeling fluttered through his chest, making his heart race erratically. A hand, icy at the fingertips, but warmer at the palm, reached around and grabbed the back of his neck. Sanji shivered at the touch, or maybe from the cold; he had no idea which.
The thick fingers at the nape of his neck roughly gripped tendrils of blonde hair; though it pulled and hurt, for some reason, the sensation made Sanji gasp inwardly as though he had been touched in a much more sensitive place. Their lips parted for a moment as he moaned, and Zoro took the opportunity to peel back the collar of Sanji's coat and shirt, and place his mouth on Sanji's exposed neck.
Teeth raked sensitive skin, and Sanji's back arched as he unwillingly pressed his body closer to Zoro's.
Sanji's mind spun in a thousand directions, but the lustful cries of his aching body were winning any logic by a landslide.
"You're right, marimo," Sanji said suddenly.
"Hah?" Zoro breathed into his neck, momentarily releasing the bit of skin he has been lightly sucking. Sanji shivered, despite the heat of his breath near his ear.
"I won't forgive you for showing me this."
"That so," Zoro murmured, unbuttoning the first and second buttons of the collared shirt Sanji was wearing underneath his coat, so that he could trace the outline of Sanji's collarbone with his tongue as the cook let out a faint whimper of pleasure. "Well, fair enough, but I won't forgive you either, cook."
"What the hell have I done?"
"You didn't stop me."
Sanji wanted to get angry at him for that. Really, the bubbling fury was right at the tip of his tongue. But then the swordsman leaned in, nipping at his neck again. With a shiver of anticipation, Sanji realized that his own mouth was also very near to the swordsman's neck. He reached up a tentative hand, feeling out the exposed skin, which burned with desire even in the cold, and he realized he couldn't resist it.
Sanji leaned forward and pressed his mouth against the side of Zoro's neck, nipping gently at first, testing the waters. As the swordsman let out a small, throaty moan, however, excitement flooded the cook, and he bit a little harder.
The hand at the back of his neck slipped downward, past the collar of his open shirt, the faint clawing of short fingernails somehow making him let out a gasp. It was too high for his voice; embarrassment flooded him, but it was nothing compared to the electrifying pressure building in his lower core.
In fact, the building pressure was starting to mingle with a faint ache, desperately crying for relief. Unthinkingly, the cook lowered a hand to his own groin, pressing against the painful bulge in his pants.
Then he caught himself, and suddenly he yanked himself back a few inches, pulling his teeth away from the skin of Zoro's collarbone. He hadn't really intended to touch himself like that. He couldn't see Zoro's expression, couldn't tell what was going through his head, or if he had noticed the reason for Sanji's sudden withdrawal.
Then a strong hand pressed the inside of his thigh, deliberately sliding upward, pressing firmly, sensually, as it made its way to the front of Sanji's pants. The cook realized he was panting heavily, mouth wide open, but he couldn't help it; the feeling of a hand that wasn't his own, even over his clothes, was indescribable.
The swordsman's feverish mouth pressed against his, taking advantage of the opening. Sanji realized he was clutching the front of Zoro's unbuttoned parka, yanking him closer. He grabbed the swordsman's shoulders, pinning his body against his own. Whether it was because he was freezing or just unimaginably turned on, he didn't know; but his body was growing warmer, flooded with heat and arousal.
And then, Zoro's hand was inside of his pants, fingers tightly wrapping around Sanji's unbearably hard flesh. The cook bit down on Zoro's lip as he cried out.
"Oi-i," Zoro stammered, and for the first time, Sanji noticed the other man's breathing was just as heavy as his own. For some reason, it made his already racing heart begin to pound ever-harder. After several gasping breaths, Zoro leaned forward, taking a moment to run the tip of his tongue across Sanji's ear, before he whispered into it. The cook's jaw dropped open and his back arched as another shiver made its way down his spine. Then he whispered, right next to Sanji's ear, "To me, too."
It was stupidly vague, and the kind of shit that Sanji would have normally berated the other man over. But he understood it and there was something more important than a petty quarrel happening right now.
Although Sanji couldn't see, by feeling around the inside of Zoro's clothing, he could figure out how to get through the layers of clothes to find the target.
As he wrapped a hand around Zoro's thick erection, the swordsman lurched forward until his head was right next to Sanji's, his lips touching the cook's sensitive earlobe. "Shit," he cursed under his breath.
The low, sultry voice of the other man coupled with the incessant rubbing in his lower regions sent a vigorous tremor through Sanji's body, more violent than all the rest. The swordsman clutched him a little tighter.
"Stop that, ero-cook," Zoro said breathlessly, a peculiar hint of a plea in his voice.
"I don't understand," Sanji barely managed to mutter in response.
"Stop reacting like that," Zoro demanded, resting his head against Sanji's shoulder. "I can't take it."
"I can't exactly fucking help it," Sanji shot back.
"Tch, is your will that weak?" he taunted.
"You should hear yourself," Sanji pointed out, increasing the tension of his hand clutching the swordsman's erection. Zoro jerked in surprise, unconsciously pulling the cook closer to him, letting out a rumbling moan that seemed to reverberate across the entire cave.
The mixture of the unbearably cold chill of the air mixed with the feverishly hot skin of the swordsman was new and exciting. It was too cold to undress, but Sanji wondered what would have happened if they could. As it was, they both had their coats and shirts open in the front, chests exposed for easy access to hands, mouths, whatever other skin they could touch.
Even the ache in his head was starting to subside as his desire climbed higher and higher, until he felt like he could barely contain himself any longer. A primal urge was taking over, and he couldn't even comprehend what he could do to make himself stop.
"Let's do it," Zoro murmured into his ear; the same thought lingering at the back of the cook's mind that he didn't dare voice.
Sanji couldn't form the words to reply; it was too difficult, too embarrassing, to admit he wanted it. But he crushed his mouth against Zoro's, stroking his erection with increasing intensity. Even if no more words were exchanged, it was a very clear affirmative reply.
For a short time, Sanji was able to forget about the ache in his head and the chill of the winter air; there was just Zoro, and pleasure, and his body trembling with unparalleled blissful sensations.
As soon as Zoro pulled his body off of Sanji's, freezing air flooded his exposed chest, slick from sweat. With a smirk, he watched the cook clumsily try to button his clothes as quickly as he could with shivering hands; no doubt the ero-cook was regretting all his cumbersome buttoned clothes right about now.
Zoro's gaze shifted to the entrance of the cave. "The sun's almost down," he noted.
"Tch, so we did kill some time then," Sanji muttered, reaching up to pull the blindfold off of his face.
"Oi, hold on, I'll put out the fire first," Zoro said. He started to pull himself to his feet, a bit taken aback that his legs felt a little bit wobbly. Well, it had been a hell of an orgasm, so he supposed it was to be expected.
"Alright," he called out, as soon as he was through stomping out the meager fire.
Nodding, Sanji reached up and pulled the piece of fabric from over his eyes. Although Zoro wasn't able to make out very much in the darkness, he could see that Sanji was staring at the piece of cloth for an inordinately long time.
"Oi, isn't this your shitty bandana?" Sanji asked in surprise, holding it out toward the swordsman.
Zoro knelt down in front of him, leaning in until his face was right in front of Sanji's. "Ah. It's all I could think of." The swordsman smirked in amusement as the cook started in surprise at his close proximity.
But then, the cook averted his eyes back to the bandana, deep in thought at he stared at it, turning the piece of cloth over in his hands again and again. Finally, he held it up to Zoro, handling it back to him.
"How are you eyes?" Zoro asked, tucking it into his pocket.
"A lot better," Sanji said, glancing toward the mouth of the cave. "We'll see once we get outside, though."
"Shit, it's cold," Sanji muttered under his breath, jamming a cigarette into his mouth.
As they trekked forward, quickly putting distance between them and the cave, Zoro didn't say a whole lot. Normally, if they weren't bickering, it was sort of normal for them to fall into a comfortable silence—but for some reason, after what had just happened between them, the quiet felt awkward and thick with uncertainty.
The trees were starting to thin out, and gusts of frigid wind began to feel stronger than before. Sanji clutched his crossed arms tighter against his body, trying to stave off the cold.
And then, as they approached the end of the treeline, Sanji realized they were at the edge of a steep plateau. As he stared down at the scenery below, he felt his breath catch in his throat.
The town was below, at the bottom of the valley, and it was swirling with beautiful colors. Every building, every house, every tree was illuminated with innumerable multicolored lights. Like a shimmering oasis in the middle of the desert, the beacon of holiday lights emanating from the town below shown amazingly bright and filled Sanji with relief and a sort of happy sensation that he would not have expected.
"Oi, your eyes," Zoro said suddenly, stepping closer to Sanji, peering at him with unmasked concern. "It's really bright down there."
Sanji smiled slightly and shook his head from side to side. "I'm alright."
And he was; the last traces of the blinding headache had disappeared with his orgasm, and now his vision seemed to be returning to its normal state. His eyes no longer stung at the effort of being open, even in the extreme cold.
Even the cold suddenly felt a little less biting, Sanji suddenly realizing, momentarily lifting his eyes away from the beautiful scene below.
And then he realized that Zoro had taken another step closer to him, and that he was gradually leaning in, more and more, until Sanji could feel the warm body begin to press against him.
Sanji turned toward him, haltingly meeting his gaze; he was a bit startled to see that the swordsman was looking at him with such a smoldering magnitude. It made his heart beat a little faster; made his body lean in a little closer.
And inexplicably, Zoro leaned in closer as well, until their lips gingerly pressed together. At first, the kiss was subdued and tender; but then the burning intensity from a short while earlier seemed to return, and they kissed a bit more desperately.
Except this time, Sanji could open his eyes during the kiss and catch a glimpse of the swordsman's expression. His eye was clenched shut tightly, his brow slightly furrowed from the effort of the kiss.
He glanced to the side, taking in the glittering, colorful lights below one more time. They were indeed splendid, somehow making the town look completely encompassed in a world of color. As the kiss deepened, Sanji realized he could even hear the faint hum of music coming from the town, hauntingly floating to the top of the trees. It was melodic and filled with joy, perfectly complimenting the dazzling scene below.
Then Sanji closed his eyes and shifted his attention back to Zoro's kiss; after all, he had something in front of him far more dazzling than all the holiday lights in the world.