It’s early. So early, in fact, that the sun isn’t fully risen yet (won’t be for another half-hour, at least). Kaito’s been up for the better part of an hour, watching as strands of silver hair moved with every even breath.
He looks good like this, Kaito thinks, but he could be bloody and bald and Kaito would still think the same thing.
Kaito could laugh at how nauseatingly cheesy his inner dialogue sounds, even to himself, but he can’t bring himself to break the comforting silence. Instead, he shifts so that half his face is pressed into the pillow and inhales deeply. It smells just like Chris and a little bit like soap, sweat and something that makes the tips of Kaito’s ears flush pink. He stays there, watching the rise and fall of Chris’s chest from the corner of his eye.
It feels surreal. He almost pinches himself to make sure he’s not dreaming, but stops himself when he remembers that he’s not. Still, the movement is enough to rouse Chris from his sleep, and when he reaches up to rub his eyes with a soft moan, Kaito pretends to be asleep.
“Jesus Kaito, what time is it?” He asks, not fooled for a second.
Kaito doesn’t answer, just keeps his eyes closed and smiles.
The phone rings halfway through Diamonds Are Forever (Chris can’t believe that Kaito’s never seen it) and he gets up to answer it in the other room. Kaito wonders if he should pause the movie, if that would make it too obvious that he’s trying to listen to what Chris is saying to the person on the other end. He doesn’t pause, but he does lower the volume a few notches and stops paying attention to what’s happening on the screen. He wasn’t that interested anyways.
Chris comes back two minutes later and smiles at him, something is off. Kaito stares blankly at the moving pictures on the screen and silently runs the scenarios in his mind. Why did he answer his phone in the other room? What did the other person want? Why hasn’t he left yet? James Bond is halfway through extracting himself from a pipeline when Kaito excuses himself to use the bathroom. He ends up kneeling in front of the toilet and dry heaving for fifteen minutes before getting up to splash his face with cold water.
There’s a post-it note on the mirror and Kaito reaches for it automatically, leaving wet fingerprints where he pinches it, between his index finger and thumb. Kaito’s Birthday! Don’t Forget! is written on it, in red ink, underlined about twenty times. Kaito’s breath evens out as he crumples the note and sticks it in his pocket.
He feels a bit silly, standing in the bathroom now.
Outside, Chris has the movie paused. He looks concerned and Kaito smiles. He’s still there, he’s not leaving.
“Sorry,” Chris says, and it’s the first apology Kaito ever remembers hearing from him.
There’s a beat of extended silence before Kaito realizes that he’s waiting for a reply.
Chris looks as utterly confused as Kaito feels, “Didn’t anyone ever tell you that it wasn’t- isn’t your fault?”
Kaito shakes his head, not understanding. Who would have ever told him something like that?
Chris laughs a little, but it sounds sad. He takes Kaito’s hands in his, ignoring the way he flinches at the contact, and looks directly into Kaito’s eyes, “It’s not your fault.”
Kaito wants to pull away and cover his ears, but Chris says it again before he can.
By the time he gets his hands over his ears he finds that he’s crying. Still, he’s not sure he understands what Chris is trying to say.
The rain beats down on Kaito as he sits on the ground, the puddle soaking through his pants as he stares up at the angry expression on Chris's face. His cheek stings, but he’s been hurt worse before. If he’s crying, he can’t tell.
He can barely hear what he’s saying over the sound of his own heart beating, but nothing is making sense. What did he do? How can he fix it? Why is he leaving?
He doesn’t call out when Chris turns around and leaves. Just sits in the rain and thinks, everything good eventually ends.
Kaito is thirteen when he’s first introduced to Christopher Arclight. Chris is older, knows more things about space than even Kaito does and if Kaito’s noticing, he’s impossibly beautiful. His hair practically forming a halo of light around his head, with how the sun reflects off it. They spend hours in the library together, pouring over books about space. Sometimes Haruto needs Kaito and Chris is called in to help out in the lab, but every other waking moment is spent in each other’s company.
Chris doesn’t seem surprised when Kaito leans over the table abruptly, one otherwise unremarkable afternoon, and knocks their teeth together painfully. Instead, he holds Kaito’s face still with one hand under his chin and presses his lips against Kaito’s properly, licking into his mouth when he gasps at the feeling.
“I want to go to the moon someday,” Kaito confesses, when they break apart.
“I’ll go with you,” Chris replies, completely serious.