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Ryuji, as usual, is never good at controlling his rage, although this time he has a good reason for that. None of the other Thieves could bear it when they see all the discolored bruises on their Leader's face and body. Lucky for him, they have yet to check his ribs and right thigh to find the shoe marks still freshly imprinted on his skin. Ren does not have any good explanation or reassurance on his part, so he just tries to laugh it off and tells them that he does not remember anything because of the drugs, and thus does not feel anything; but that only feeds to the team's already rising suspicion and anger. But what can he do otherwise; his role as Leader is to keep the members well and together, even as the lingering pain and desolation in that interrogation room are still crawling under his skin, like invisible hands lurking in the shadow, waiting to grab him into darkness' gnaw when he lets down his guard.

"Stop beating around the bush, Ren, we're worried sick about you! We're in this together, remember? How can we just let it slide when you're being treated like that!?"

"I don't think we should dwell too much on this matter. We have a lot more ahead to think about." The raven-haired boy leans forward, fingers crossed on the table. "I've already accepted the risks when we decided on our plan anyway."

"If we knew things would turn out like this, like hell we would have let you go! They tortured you, Ren! Do you really think we can just turn a blind eye?" Ann is even more heated up than Ryuji, blue eyes on the verge of tears.

Tortured .

"No, not now."

Ren looks at the darkness lurking behind with gaze of cold steel, as if he has never left the room, where men in black suits encircled him, trying to pry on every little bit of information out of his teeth. "No." He speaks to them as if he himself never knows fear.

"Ryuji, Ann, calm down. It's not his fault." Makoto stands up between them, bailing him out like she always does when things get tough. "Ren has gone through a lot since then. Yelling at him like that is not our way to say thanks to him."

Ryuji and Ann turn away in silence, complying to Makoto's peace treaty for now, but both of them know they will not leave the matter at that. Though, Ren has a lot to thank Makoto; he is just barely holding himself together just now. He knows full well he is in no state to laugh it off, he knows he needs to seek some help for the lingering trauma of that terrifying event, but what good would it be if he lets them know, aside from making them even more worried and agitated?

And so he conceals it from sight, under the smile of Joker.

"All I care now is that we won," Ren smirks, hands sliding into pockets. "If you want to settle this score, better keep those feet moving."




"Where are you going at this hour, Ren?"

The raven boy jolts up at Morgana's sudden gaze, cat eyes glowing eerie blue in the dark. It has been a week since his release from the interrogation room, yet there has never been one night when Ren has a peaceful long sleep. Though, he always pretends to lie still in bed and wait till morning, so that Morgana will not be worried. But now his patience finally reaches its limit, restlessness eating away at his mind like a flame, fills it with ill thoughts. Ren sits up, puts the grey hoodie on along with his bag. It is past midnight, so he thought Morgana must have been deep in his sleep, but no. Nothing can get through that damn cat.

"I just need some fresh air. You know, for easier sleep…"

"And your bag?"


"Ren, you've been acting really strange lately."

"We're about to have an important battle ahead, who wouldn't be anxious? Just go ahead and sleep, I'll come back soon. Just need to cool my head a bit."

"Then at least let me go with you—"

"You still wanna keep tabs on me even now?! Can't you leave me be for just a single minute? What are you afraid of, me doing something foolish? Or did they tell you to watch over me like a kid that doesn't know what's right for himself?"

Morgana sits still, dumbfounded. Silence sends a sliver of guilt down Ren's spine. Deep in his heart, he knows they are only worried about him, and everyone has tried their best not to make him feel like being watched, but at this stressful time, even the slightest agitation gets on his nerves. He knows he is totally in the wrong, but right now he just wants to be by himself. To be away. From everything.

So, he leaves the still-quiet Morgana behind his back and walks away from Leblanc to someplace unknown, only leaving the sound of the doorbell ringing in place of a silent cold night.




"At this hour? Who the hell—"




"…! Ren?"


"Wait, kid, don't hang up! What happened?"

"…Heh. Nothing really, I just really miss your voice all of the sudden. Long time no sees, Mune ."

"Shit! Don't scare me like that in the middle of the night! I have a kid here, ya know." Iwai curses under his breath. "But I miss you too, kid."

Iwai turns on the light and sits up, turns on the phone's external speaker, then puts on his turtleneck sweater. It's been a month since they last met, and although Ren tries not to mention much, Iwai always has his way of finding out what is going on. Because of that Ren no longer has to be wary of him, because none of his secrets is safe anyways. Iwai was one of the first to receive a notice of Ren's escape, but he did not pounce on him immediately but waited for things to settle down.

" I miss you too , why so sappy?" Ren chuckles.

"Say the person who called at midnight." Iwai smirks. "What's up? Don't change the subject, I know you gonna. Spill it. "

"Hmm ... I just got into a fight with my roommate. I'm the one who started it. "

"It doesn't sound like you. And I don't remember you having a roommate. "

Iwai opens the door. He himself is worried about Ren's strange behavior but he doesn't say anything yet, but he will use questioning to get what he wants to know. Kaoru has never succeeded in hiding anything from him.


"So where are you now?"

"In bed." Ren replies in a naughty voice as if he has always had hundreds of jokes, ready to tease others at any time.

"Then I'll drop by."

"No kidding, right now ?" Ren laughs.

"Uh huh, I miss you. Besides, you don't seem to be about to sleep. "

Iwai cuts the ground under Ren's feet. Ren has no answer to that.

"Alright, I'm not at home."

"So, where are you? I'll drop by."




It is nearly 1 AM, and the children's playground looks like it came out of a horror movie. Not a single person is there, only a light bulb is on and the rain sprays little particles of droplets into the air. In the midst of that silence, there is only one teenager swinging on a steel frame shaped like several stacked-up cubes. If anyone else sees this, they may think that the kid is high on drugs to be playing outside at this hour, but Iwai realizes that something is bothering him. Seventeen years old, thrown to a completely different place from home and somehow becoming the leader of the "Thieves of Hearts" gang; taking responsibility for many things, becoming the target of many people. There are so many problems on his shoulders; if this child was Iwai's then he probably would have been worried sick. But Ren seems to be no longer a kid, so the relationship between him and the man is somewhat different.

"Hey, kitten ~"

Ren looks toward the source of the noise. His movements are not as swift as usual - he usually could even let go of his hands and drop right into Iwai like a real cat (believe him, it is not an exaggeration) but for some reason, he doesn't tonight, his posture is like a tired office worker. Iwai also climbs up to play with him even though he is old and as big as a bear, but at this hour there is nobody here to laugh at that.

"That is my line, what's with meeting at midnight? This is new."

"Because you sounded like you were trying to say something, but had no one to confide in."

Ren gets quiet. He stamps his foot, pushes his body up, flies all over the steel bar and immediately positions himself above Iwai, as gently as if he has done these thousands of times in a place no one could see. Ren's shadow is beautiful, standing proud under the light, provoking like a challenge. In the dim light, Iwai sees the bruised wrist exposed under his hoodie.

"You’re injured?" Iwai squints.

"While resisting arrest." Ren smirked.

"Pray tell the whole story?"

All of a sudden, Iwai grabs Ren's wrist, pulls him down in a sharp motion. He's decided to end his cat-and-mouse game here because it would never end if he wasn't the one to put an end to it. Ren is completely taken aback by the loss of balance, he can only try to hold on whatever he can grab, which in this case is Iwai's collar. But it is actually impossible for him to fall because Iwai grabs his belt, his grip like a strong pincer pinning Ren onto his body. Ren is aghast, his heart pounding furiously, his face hot with anger.

"Bastard," He growls.

"Don't play around while talking with adults. Haven't you learned how to behave, kid ?"

"I'm not a kid."

Because right in front of his nose is Iwai's soft and defenseless ear, Ren bites it with his sharp fangs. His lips feeling Iwai's body slightly jerking, Ren smirks contentedly inside. Iwai mumbles something in his mouth, his other hand slowly releasing the steel bar to bring both of them to the ground. He has a cat that needs to be disciplined.

His heart is pounding in his chest as the big man presses him against the steel frame and makes him look like a trapped bird, their bodies pressed against each other hotly in the cold night rain. Iwai kisses his hair, his cheekbones, and down his neck, before their lips clashes, breaking. It is no longer a strange feeling when Iwai's tongue sinks into his mouth, he greets it merrily and responds in the same way, as if to prove that he is a worthy partner. Calloused fingers slide into black hair, lightly grasping, pulling back, forcing Ren to face up, allowing Iwai to regain dominance. Ren breathes out in pleasure. He has been longing for the warmth of Iwai's body, his strong embrace is like a vicious flood, drowning his mind into blank white. It is as if all the storms and the cold of the world outside could not reach where they are, inside here only warmth and peace exist. Ren smiles. His hands mischievously draw circles on the chest of the man in front of him, his body jerks slightly as Iwai blocks his thigh between his legs, rubbing. Iwai is like a machine with gears clamping his body and crushing it into an utter mess.

"Mune ... st... stop!" Ren breathes heavily when one of Iwai's hands slides under his shirt.

"Thought you would never say that." Iwai licks his lips, his eyes are of a predator playing with his prey.

"What I mean is..." Ren still has to adjust his breathing after that moment. "I want to do that."

Iwai freezes.

"We have always been doing that until now."

"You always treat me like a  child."

"You are a child."

"Ok, then consider this." Ren's eyes flash with a sly glint. "We're gonna do it, and after that, I will tell you what I was thinking. Agreed?"




Unlike what Ren expected, that after they having been away from each other for a long time Iwai would hold him in a tight cuddle with a burning passion and genuine enthusiasm as soon as possible in a small hotel that they could easily walk to, he seems to have another plan for Ren instead. Iwai leads him through the streets of Yongenjaya which he knows like the back of his hand, but seems to be a different place when it is already past midnight. The shops are closed, and because of the drizzling rain, the street is even more quiet than usual, with only some lonely streetlights and the light from vending machines. It is like there is only Ren and Iwai in the whole neighborhood, just like that one scene in a movie about a  post-apocalyptic world that was abandoned and deserted but somehow still had a very poetic sight. Because there is no one on the street, he and Iwai are hand-in-hand; Ren's hand is stuffed into Iwai's large jacket pocket, their fingers entwined. On a normal day, even a slightly over-intimate gesture will receive a cold look from Iwai as he spits "Didn't you have enough trouble to deal with, kid?"; but when there is only them, Iwai is always determined to prove his feelings to him without shying away nor second thoughts. Just as proud as the way he takes on the task of becoming the father of a child, Iwai lives without remorse.

He is the type of person that even at that age still has people head over heels for him. Ren knows that all too well.

"If you want to do something ‘serious’, eat up first." Iwai separates the chopsticks and hands them to Ren.

"You seem to be familiar with this place, I thought that your place is in Shibuya." Ren was surprised.

"Before I call that place home, my home used to be the whole of Tokyo." Iwai receives his ramen bowl, not forgetting to thank the cook. He took Ren to a small ramen stall, which is not a rare thing here. "Eat wherever I can, sleep wherever available. This small ramen stall happened to be the place I used to visit at midnight when I felt lost."

Ren could imagine the life of a young man with a crewcut, working in the only organization to foster an orphan with nothing in his hand, eager to have something for himself so that he felt less lost in this cruel circle of life. Ren, in some aspect, is like that boy; broken from his family like a stray button, he is already used to Tokyo but still wonders, always, where he really belongs.

"Is it possible to find the way just by eating?" Ren's eyes widen. "I have to ask the owner for the recipe then!"

Iwai rolls his eyes but still bursts into laughter and suddenly reaches out to mess up Ren's raven hair that is slightly wet from the rain. Ren absolutely doesn't like being treated like a kid, but since he is in the stall, he couldn't make a scene. However, the feeling of fingers slipping into his hair is also comfortable, making him want to lean against that hand for warmth.

In the end, Ren cannot finish his ramen and Iwai has to help him; he knows it's impolite when he was the one invited to eat, but ever since he got out of custody, he has lost his appetite. Normally Ren eats very well, he can even eat the whole gigantic hamburger of Big Bang challenge. Fortunately, Iwai does not question the reason for it. Anyway, his body warms up after that meal, so he has more than enough energy to play all night.

After the meal, he suddenly remembers that he has not taken his medicine. It is a new drug from Takemi (that she assured him was fully tested but Ren couldn't find it anywhere in the market), an analgesic that speeds up healing and also acts as an antidepressant. It has a minor side effect (any medicine made by the suspicious back alley doctor always has a small side effect). Remembering that, Ren puts the medicine back in his pocket.

Iwai looks at it, then looks at the plasters on his face with suspicion.

"Yeah, the people in the investigation department are not very gentle."

"I know." Iwai is certainly no stranger to being dragged to the police station when he was young. They do not tolerate much even with teenage criminals. But for Ren, a pupil who, had he never stepped into Iwai's shop and Iwai only ever encountered on the street, he would never have thought was a delinquent let alone a dangerous criminal? "But why do you suddenly put it back, aren't you taking it?"

"Well, I don't need it." Actually, it is quite necessary, because if he doesn't take it his body will start to ache uncomfortably. "Besides, I don't like its side effects. It makes me ... distracted. "

That's an understatement. The last time he took it, he was high as hell.

"‘S okay, just drink it. I will be your guide, step by step . "

Iwai crosses his arms, smirking. Ren blushes, and dares to shoot a glance at the arrogant man. Then he drinks the two pills.




Their next destination is a convenience store that opens overnight, to buy condoms and lubricants along with some hot drinks they can use later. Iwai does not seem to have much interest, but Ren jumps like a squirrel to one shelf after another and finds the most bizarre condoms.


"Okamoto 0.01 Zero, one of the thinnest condoms ever in the solar system, warrants surreal feeling as if playing bare. Okamoto 0.02 Large is for men with a monster cock, warrants freedom of movements. Flash Condom Pikkarinko Chan with luminous coating makes Iwai-kun glow like a lightsaber ... "

"I can read it myself, you don't need to advertise for the whole shop to hear." Iwai rubs his forehead; he is busy comparing some types of lubricants together because the last time he had sex there were not as many types available.

"Or buy this: smart design with G-spot stimulating particles ensures he reaches top-notch climax."

Iwai rolls his eyes, then grabs Ren's jaws in a blink. He is frightened but Iwai's hand is too strong for him to squirm. Iwai kisses him for very long despite the dead stare of the saleswoman behind the counter.

"Then buy this one." Ren says with floaty tone, his face flushed. "There's no need for lubrication, I have it in my pocket."

"Why didn't you say it earlier?" Iwai is taken aback. "You already have it? Since when…?"

"Are you jealous?" Ren's eyes brighten; it turns out that Iwai is also a very possessive man. Iwai does not answer, just glaring at him. He simply wants to know why a high school student has that thing in his pocket. "Don't worry, I'm still a virgin."

Ren winks. Iwai sighs. Even if Ren was a playboy who had fun with many young girls of his age, Iwai would not be surprised; Ren is really handsome when he's not wearing his obedient student mask. But Iwai suspects that the lubrication bottle is for other purposes.

"Anything that makes you comfortable. The first time is not gonna be easy. "

Iwai brings the condoms that Ren wants to buy for scientific purposes to the counter. Next time he will prepare all these things first to avoid bringing this naughty cat with him to another condom-shopping trip.




In the end, they don't go to a hotel as Ren thought, but Iwai takes Ren to his home instead. Ren stands idly for a moment before Iwai takes his hand and leads him inside. Despite having been dating for nearly a year, this is the first time Ren has ever been taken home by his boyfriend. Iwai feels weird when the naughty demon who's not afraid of anything hesitates to enter a stranger's house. (Wait, isn't "illegal break-in" actually Ren's job in the first place?)

Ren slowly walks through the doorway, even when Iwai is already inside he is still standing there slowly observing everything. The small house on the western edge of Shibuya is quite tidy despite being home to a single man and a teenager. Looking around the house, Ren could recognize Iwai's lifestyle: the interior and the layout is minimalist followed by the thoughts of a simple man, but the small pots in the corners of the house and the set of cute tea cups show that the father of the family has gentle and meticulous care.

They say that the room shows the personality of a man (which, for being a mind-thief Ren must have understood all too well). If Untouchable was his cold, tough surface and was even a dangerous part, this house was a hidden gentle and considerate part. Ren understands why Iwai's been dating him for a long time but never once offered to take him home. It seems like a private place, where only the people he trusts can enter.

"Are you going to break into my house later on? What are you planning, Mr. Phantom Thief ?" Iwai teases.

"I'm not that pathetic to steal from people." Ren retorts.

"Hey, you know I didn't mean it, don't you?"

Iwai approaches Ren after hanging their clothes on the hanger (Ren had only a thin vest on). Although he never says it, Iwai could understand how a proud young man like him would be very self-conscious about his indigence.

"I came today to get something that belongs to me." Ren suddenly tiptoes with his arms over Iwai's neck, locking him into his arms. "Legitimately."

Iwai smirks. He wraps his arms around Ren's waist and hips, lifting him up as easily as eating candy. Ren clings to Iwai's waist like a cat clinging to its master. The two of them keep that position until Iwai unlocks the door to his room, violently pushing Ren into the wall. Ren breathes out, his heart beating hard. In the dimness of the bedroom there is a slight scent of wood and the smell of fabric softener, Ren notices as the rough firm hands of the man he loves fumbles through his body. Stroking those smooth thighs, squeezing firm buttocks. Ren should have been the initiator and demanded something that belonged to him, but faced with Iwai's erotic gestures and those eyes that made no effort to hide his burning lust, Ren comes back to being a clumsy virgin.

"Huh?" Ren is surprised.

"You said you wanted to use the back, didn't you?" Iwai smiles, a finger stroking the crack of his butt. "We do have condoms, but we can play bare if you like. You can rest assured that I am safe and tested ."

In the moment of intense excitement, Ren forgot about it.

"Uhm, me too. I will borrow the bathroom for a bit." He kisses Iwai on the cheek, preferring to be prepared for his first time. "Obediently wait for me, big boy ."

Because Ren has previous experience, he deals with it quite quickly. Yes, Ren prepared for this day long ago; he is not the kind of person who likes being passive. The lubricant bottle he put in his bag (because he doesn't want Morgana to suddenly find it in his desk and become curious ) was for when he tried his first fingers. Now he can stuff the whole toy in and still feel comfortable. It's his body, who can forbid it?

"You seem to know what you're doing. I love it."

Iwai half-lies half-sits on the bed, holding a magazine, his upper body naked for the first time before Ren's eyes. Damn, those breathtakingly beautiful tattoos. Ren feels the fires inside him burn up when he sees the tattoo patterns of a crocodile swimming between lotus flowers on Iwai's perfect, firm muscles. The things that Iwai has always covered under his turtleneck are proudly exposed.

"Then I'm not a kid anymore, right?"

Ren gets onto the bed, sitting up straight on Iwai's body in a provocative way. He knows Iwai will have a damn nice view of his young but not any less lewd body.

Ren brings his hand up to take off his shirt, but then he decides not to. It will ruin the mood...

But Iwai immediately catches his hesitation. He lifts up Ren's shirt.

It's like as a peaceful thousand-year-old forest is suddenly struck by lightning, flaring with anger burning down into the ground, the way Iwai's eyes look at him. Ren is scared. He knows that there is a fit of hidden shimmering anger that the man has been keeping deep down inside, but if he ever loses control of it, the end is near.

"I told you ... the people in the investigation department are not very gentle."

"Those fucking bitches..." Iwai growls. As an adult, he's never supported Ren's anarchy activities, but he probably has no reason to stop it now. Looking at those horrible wounds, even though they are healed, he knows what those used to be. What absolute scum, those police officers.

"You lost interest ..." Ren sounds disappointed. He tries so hard to forget about it to have fun with Iwai. Iwai will now spend the rest of the night cursing and asking if he's alright, just like his friends. "Had to run away from home, but even here I ..."

Hearing this, Iwai sits up, grabs Ren's shoulders, and pulls him down onto the bed. Their lips entwine and the tension vanishes.

"Turns out you ran away from home because of this. If you talked about it earlier, we didn't have to waste time playing cats and mouse. "

"Talk and then what? You pity me and pet me like a wounded cat? Reminding me of how pathetic and helpless I was?"

"Shut up. You know I know better than that. "

Iwai climbs up and Ren was in a passive position, perhaps with Iwai he doesn't hate being passive. He feels like Iwai's strong grip helps him calm down because no one else can keep him so tight in their embrace. Iwai seems to know that, perhaps from an experience, he had when caring for a sensitive child like Kaoru? Carefully, Iwai pulls Ren's shirt up to reveal his body full of bruises, looking at him naked. Iwai told him the truth; those eyes are not of pity.

"Like shit. My first time is in this pathetic body, what bullshit. "

"You have no idea. Maybe you are even more beautiful now. "

Those eyes suck in the sight of Ren's naked body, savoring it. Ren gulps.

"Didn't know you have that kind of language in you..." Ren raises an eyebrow.

"Well, I love a person and not a statue. We humans struggle to thrive, these scars in the process just make you more beautiful to me. "

Iwai pulls Ren's hand down, touching the bulge in his pants to prove that he's not lying, making the teen blush. He opens his mouth to say something, but suddenly feels the salty taste of skin at the tip of his tongue instead.

"Beautiful but too stubborn. A man like me just wants to stuff this sinful thing into that beautiful mouth when I tame the beast inside you. "

" Bashar ." Ren murmurs around Iwai's fingers.

"You like it."

Ren doesn't answer, in response he uses his tongue to caress the fingers in his mouth. Iwai waits no longer and takes off both of their pants and pulls Ren's legs out, rubbing his hot vein-wrapped member against Ren's small entrance. Ren shudders slightly. When he feels the cool lubricant circle his entrance, he hears the sound of a plastic wrapper being opened.

"Raw me."

"Hmm, always impatient."

Iwai uses his fingers to open Ren, thrusting in. Ren tried with toys every once in a while but, God, Iwai is huge. He has never been so full before, his body stiffens, tears coming out at the corner of his eyes. He seems unable to breathe. Iwai kisses his neck, his shoulders, his the sensitive nipples perking up so cutely. He patiently keeps at it like that until Ren breathes back steadily. There is a very different feeling showing on his face.

“Deeper, Mune ... Where is the beast inside you?" Ren grins, but his head is on the cloud.

"Ya asked for it."

Mune starts to move, though not as rough as he tries to show, but enough for Ren's body to dance. It's like he's dancing on a pile of red coals. The heat, the friction ... make him crazy.

Indeed Ren adapted very quickly, soon he's pushing himself towards Iwai like a hungry cat. Their breathing synced, the difficult ride slowly becomes comfortable. Iwai also shifts his position and the angle of his thrusts so that Ren cannot get the hold of it, so he feels like he's just a boat pushed back and forth by the unpredictable sea.


Ren's eyes are half-closed because pleasure suddenly open, as if Iwai has touched something that should not be touched. Iwai knows what it was, and that's what he has been aiming at from the start. Ever since that first touch, Iwai has repeatedly pushed, stabbed, ground, raped the damned spot that makes Ren go out of his mind and wrecked each time he is touched. This is just too much, too much.

"N ... no... Mune .... don't ... "

"No?" Iwai cautiously slows his movements. And for the first time since they started dating, he sees Ren's eyes widening in terror. He did not expect them to be so big, it's as if his soul is being sucked out.

"Don't stop!!!" Ren shouts, half-orders half-begs.

Iwai can't do anything else but comply, right?


Ren grits his teeth when he comes so hard, the body seizing to release the sensuality that's pushed to the extreme from his pitiful body, he could only take so much. Iwai also comes at the same time, hugging the teen closely, grinding into the weak spot inside him even though Ren tries helplessly to push away on instinct. Cum shoots into the warm channel, filling the void inside. Ren still groans after the climax washes through his body.

"You can come right in the first time we try... Such a natural!" Iwai praises Ren without any mockery.

But Ren can't react anyways. He's in space.

However, Iwai is right. He likes that.

"Hey, what the..."

Even though Iwai has yet to recover, Ren shoves his head down and his hips up, his butt right at Iwai's face. He smiles at the man through semen-streaked legs, where from his abused hole semen has dripped down in opalescent white drops. He's got a lascivious smirk on his face.




"Ren, Ren!"

Ren wakes up when he hears someone calling him very loudly while shaking his shoulders hard. Ren wits up but his body is still shaking, his hair wet with sweat. In the nightmare he was awakened from, the darkness of the interrogation room caught up to him, dragging him into endless pain and humiliation. "Ren Amamiya, do you think you can get out of here in one piece?" "Amamiya, you think that your courage is a big deal?" "Amamiya ..."

It takes him a few minutes to realize that his pants are also wet, not just his hair and his shirt. Ren… urinated without restraint, because he was too scared. He gasps, glancing at Iwai in horror and shame, then covers his face in his palms. Tears heavily drenched his eyelashes but he still tries to keep himself from crying, as if he had some pride left to save. Iwai ignores all that, hugging him loosely, swaying his body in slow motion. Iwai learned to calm people down when Kaoru was still little and scared of so many things when he would pull Kaoru into a hug then gently rock him back and forth. Indeed, that is also helping Ren with his shaking.

"I'm just a stuck-up liar... Always speaking loudly about ‘don't pity me' but so afraid to sleep at night and even pees on the bed like a fucking child." His voice trembles against Iwai's chest.

"That's normal, Ren. The human body is like that, it is not because you are a coward. I know that."

For someone who lived twenty years in constant fear of not knowing when he would die in a gunfight, Iwai knows better than most how fear is inevitable. Ren could be an extremely brave and reckless guy, but he was still just human. Not to mention what that young mind has had to go through is worse than nightmares.

"Look at me, Ren."

He still does not dare to look up, but Iwai pats him on the back as if urging him, to say that it is safe to talk about it and he would not in any way make light of Ren. But for Iwai to help him, he needs to be honest.

"This is really serious, Ren. It's not simply because you're weak or anything, you're having a problem. I don't know what it is and I don't have the ability diagnose it, but I can see the signs. The joy and sense of safety in your eyes are gone. You look pale and lifeless. This is not the person I've always known."

Ren sits quietly in sadness. Could it be that he had lost all his strength while his friends need him the most? If he is not the inspiration for them, where will the Phantom Thieves go? He should have been stronger, not broken and sad because people scare him a bit.

"I know what you're thinking, that you need to be stronger, to endure this to protect people. But that's not the way."

Ren stares at Iwai with teary eyes, eyes that look bigger than usual when his are quite large compared to a common teenage boy. People still call him a weird, confusing person, but Iwai sees through his heart.

"Do you remember, a month ago, what you said when Tsuda pointed a gun at Kaoru and threatened to take everything from me? When I thought that only I could solve everything and protect my family."

Ren is silent for a moment. How could he forget it, the sentence he thought over and over the moment their lives were hanging on a thread, crazily happy when it actually worked and Iwai finally let the burden roll off his shoulder.

" Believe in Kaoru. Believe in your loved ones ." Ren whispers.

"Can't hear you, can you repeat?"

"Believe in Kaoru. Believe in your loved ones." he speaks a bit louder.

"What?" Iwai still pretends not to hear.


Ren uses all his strength to scream at Iwai and, as he leaps up, he grabs Iwai's shoulder, pinning him to the bed like a predator that has just regained its position. He devours Iwai's kiss, grabbing and messing with his hair while biting his neck. Then he lets go of him, smiling. The smile is not as radiant as it used to be, but has regained some life.

"That's right, Ren. Do you understand? "

"Uh uhm... You're right. I have to face it instead of running away." Ren buries himself in Iwai's chest. He strokes Ren's curls affectionately. It takes quite a bit of time for people with as great pride as they have to realize that they are not a shield for people to hide in, but they are too a part of the family where everyone relies on each other.

"Well then, let's go change and replace this sheet." Iwai sighs. Ren wet Iwai's body with his urine when he climbed on him. "Tomorrow morning, you come back and apologize to your roommate. I'll take you to the psychiatrist when you feel ready, okay? "

Ren nods against Iwai's chest. In front of the others, he is always the perfect Joker, but when he is with Iwai, he's like a child who's just pretending to be an adult. Ren hates that Iwai calls him "kid", but that is not always a bad thing. He's still not ready to become an adult, still wants to be under Iwai's protection for a little longer. Iwai sits up, but Ren is still attached to him like a horseshoe crab, as he is carried into the bath princess-style.

"I was always right to rely on you ..." Ren shifts his voice into a seductive tone, his slender fingers drawing hearts on Iwai's chest. Iwai feels a bad omen. "Please take good care of me, Daddy ."

Iwai wants to let go of the male slut in his arms immediately, but doesn't because today, only today , he will take care of Ren like a princess.

"Didn't we do it three times... Did you drink something strange before going to bed?"

Ren just chuckles. Takemi's medicine normally makes him dazed and floaty, but when combined with making love it acts like ecstasy; he didn't even feel hesitant trying different weird poses with Iwai. He's gotta ask her for another prescription.