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The Quieting Powers of a Kiss

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Fuyuhiko wakes up to a scream scorching his throat. Sharp edged fragments of his nightmare—memories and twisted concoctions of his own broken mind he can’t tell apart, doesn’t want to tell apart—leave more scars that he doesn’t think will ever fade.

He sits up in his bed, in the Future Foundation facility turned Remnants of Despair boarding house on the real Jabberwock Island. His room is sparse and dark, only just lit by moonlight through the window. Fuyuhiko sighs and closes his eyes, his eye, because the other he’d—the other one is gone. The scar throbs but Fuyuhiko knows it’s a psychosomatic twinge. Still, he presses the heels of his hands to his eyes and tries to regulate his breathing, counting through inhales and exhales to keep him from thinking about anything else. Not that it ever really works.

Tonight is one of those many times it isn’t going to work. He gets out of bed and throws on a jacket just in case the winds are colder than usual. He needs to go outside, get out of his head because even though they’re exiled to a deserted island and are monsters to the entire world, the outside is better than anything that goes on in his head when he’s alone in a dark room.

But when Fuyuhiko opens his door someone’s standing on the other side.

“Kuzuryuu-kun,” Hinata says, surprised even though this is Fuyuhiko’s room. He’s got one hand raised as if to knock, but he lowers it as surprise melts off his face and is replaced by concern reflecting from his dual colored eyes. Fuyuhiko latches onto the green one, the one he grew familiar with in that program, that he could look into when he was scared and worried and spiraling out of control, and yet, still trust.

But he’s not the same Hinata from the program. None of them are. Fuyuhiko’s still not sure if who they were in the program was even real. He wants it to be true but their actions in the real world have more physical reminders and lasting effects.

“Hinata.” Fuyuhiko steps back, letting Hinata in. Hinata flicks on the light as the door shuts behind him. “Did you need something?”

“No.” He pauses. “Do you?”

“Why would I?” Fuyuhiko crosses his arms over his chest, stands a little taller, not that it does much.

“I heard you,” Hinata says, almost apologetically. “I was going to get some fresh air and I passed by your room when… Wanted to check that everything was alright.”

Shame colors Fuyuhiko’s cheeks. He is—was—the Ultimate Yakuza, heir to the Kuzuryuu clan yet he’s screaming through walls from stupid dreams and the guy who had been experimented on and used and locked away was checking up on him like he’s a child.

He looks away. Away from Hinata and his green and red eyes that see too closely, understand too much. “Just a dumb nightmare.”

His missing eye itches, the scar throbs. Fuyuhiko holds back from rubbing it, doesn’t want to draw attention to it, but Hinata notices.

“What’s wrong?”

Since he’s been caught, Fuyuhiko rubs his eye and the phantom pain ebbs, the itch appeased for now. “My eye hurts, it’s nothing.”

Hinata frowns. “It sh—”

“Shouldn’t,” Fuyuhiko says with him. “It’s a phantom pain. It happens. Sometimes it feels like there’s something in it and I’ll go to rub it or try and blink but then, oh wait.” The smile that forms on his face isn’t a nice one, most would find some way to leave.

But Hinata, the idiot, is there, worrying and understanding and Fuyuhiko doesn’t know which is worse. He wants to feel something other than guilt and the echoes of despair. He doesn’t even want to think about hope.

Hinata’s rambling something about going to the infirmary, waking Tsumiki even though Hinata has the knowledge of Kamakura somewhere in his stupid ahoge. Hinata had been Fuyuhiko’s eye surgeon when they woke up, before he went on to create the World Destroyer and wake everyone else up.

“Hinata, shut up.”

“If there’s something wrong—I’m not an actual doctor! I don’t know how much of-of-him is reliable. Why haven’t you mentioned any pain? What if it isn’t just phantom pains? Kuzuryuu-kun, you need to—”

“I need you to shut up,” Fuyuhiko interrupts. He reaches out and grabs onto Hinata’s shirt, a good fistful of cotton and drags him down. Fuyuhiko meets Hinata’s rebuttals and concern and words he doesn’t want to hear with lips and teeth and force.

He’s not sure what he had intended but there were few ways to make someone shut up and Fuyuhiko is tired of fighting and pain. He’s had more than enough of that. He just wants to stop thinking.

But now his mouth is on Hinata’s, and Hinata is finally quiet, but he’s not moving away. Fuyuhiko closes his eye at Hinata’s widened ones, closes it against the surprise and shock and confusion battling for dominance. He’s had thoughts. Thoughts of what it’d be like to be with Hinata but there’s never been an appropriate time, appropriate situation or circumstance. What idiot thinks about kissing another boy when they’re in the middle of a killing game? When they’re coming to terms with their actions, with long overdue grief and guilt and despair? When they’re saving the world and taking the blame for its near end?

When Fuyuhiko pulls away, Hinata is staring in wonder and Fuyuhiko’s having trouble keeping his gaze. “I told you to shut up.”

Hinata laughs, delayed, “That’s, yeah, you did.” But when his eyes unmistakably land on Fuyuhiko’s scar, his smile wanes, he draws his bottom lip into his mouth. “I’m sorry.”

Fuyuhiko rolls his eye to cover up the drop in his heart, releases Hinata’s shirt from his fingers. “For what? You didn’t gouge out my eye and replace it with a crazy dead girl’s. Or abuse your family and followers, your empire, to murder hundreds of people. Use your best friend as if she was nothing more than a tool. Or—”

And now it’s Hinata kissing Fuyuhiko. Softer, gentler than Fuyuhiko’s silencing kiss but just as effective and just as brief.

“That’s pretty effective,” Hinata says, barely above a whisper, as if something will break if he’s any louder.

“Shut up.” Fuyuhiko can feel the heat in his cheeks, the echo of Hinata’s lips pressed against his.

Hinata smile slants at an angle. “You could make me,” he offers, and Fuyuhiko glares up at his teasing tone. He doesn’t know what going on anymore, how they got to this point, miles away from the anger and frustration from only moments ago.

As if reminded, his eye feels like it twitches, the scar throbs its presence. Fuyuhiko winces and Hinata’s smirk smooths away into something thoughtful, a little concerned. Fuyuhiko resignedly prepares for another round of batting off unnecessary concern for his mutilation but he’s stopped short when Hinata leans down and those soft and gentle, careful lips land on his disfigurement. It’s a barely there press and Hinata keeps Fuyuhiko in the moment with a solid hand on his shoulder.

When Hinata pulls away, his smile is self-conscious, a little embarrassed. “If a kiss can quiet a person, maybe they’ll quiet other things too.”

It takes a moment for Fuyuhiko to process and respond. He shakes his head, his ears as warm as the blooming feeling in his chest and stomach. Gathering some of the warmth into courage, he feigns a calm and casual mien, but can’t help running his hand through his hair. “It’s not guaranteed. But I wouldn’t mind testing it. With you.”

Hinata’s grin is knowing, a little shy, but happy. “I’d like to kiss you a lot more, too, Kuzuryuu-kun.”

Fuyuhiko blushes hard and argues that that is not what he had said, but Hinata takes a proactive approach to begin their tests of the quieting power of a kiss.