Last year, Christmas had honestly kind of sucked.
Sure, Mikey had spent the earlier part of the day with Draken. He liked spending his Christmases with Ken-chin , with his sister before heading back to the house to spend the evening with Grandpa Sano. But his Christmases were lonely without Shinichiro being there, and he’d desperately tried to fill that void while he could.
But now, Emma wasn’t around to spend his Christmases with. Nor Izana or Shinichiro, and none of his old friends were even options anymore. It was more than bad luck, honestly. It was like Mikey himself was some sort of death omen or something. An orphan, with only his grandpa around because none of his family had survived to this year. And now that Mikey was starting to get into deeper things, he didn’t want to involve his Grandpa in it at all.
This was going to be the first Christmas without Emma or Draken. Draken, who he’d separated himself from alongside pretty much everyone in Toman because he wanted to keep them safe. And keeping them away from himself was keeping them safe.
They didn’t deserve to be mixed up in all of his bad stuff. Mikey was a good leader, after all. He looked after his own.
But last year, he’d spent time with Draken. He’d been crazy enough to take them for a bike ride, wishing that Shinichiro and Baji were by his side, riding with them. But on that bike ride, he’d sensed something off. An impulse. Mitsuya’s.
And then they’d later found themselves inside a church, standing off against the Black Dragons and the leaders of it. Who were so entangled with Toman members. The Black Dragons, once being Shinichiro’s gang had gone so far from what his brother had dreamed for himself.
It was certainly eventful.
But that was all in the past now.
Mikey had felt a pit in his stomach ever since December arrived and the holidays drew closer. Withdrawing himself a bit from his new gang, brushing off Koko’s attempts to get his attention. He’d told Koko it was because he was busy with his grandpa and family stuff- which was a joke. Mikey didn’t have any family left to celebrate Christmas with other than his ojiisan, and he would make damn certain he’d come home at the end of the day to be with him. Being alive was the greatest gift that Mikey could grant him, after all. Perhaps he’d go out and buy his grandpa some festive foods for holidays sake.
His grandpa was getting along in years, and Mikey did his best to look after him. It had always been more of Emma’s thing and while he did come off as particularly lazy, he hadn’t picked up nothing after all.
Someone had to step up when there was nobody left, after all.
Mikey would stare wistfully at the festive lights and Christmas trees that started to appear around town. The light displays were brilliant to look at, but he lamented the fact that he didn’t have anyone he could go look at them with. Sure, he knew that Sanzu would jump the gun to come with him and he could always ask Koko to accompany him, but it wouldn’t be the same as going with the one person that came to mind when he thought of such things.
But the Takemitchy that was here- in Mikey’s present was the past version of Takemitchy. Thinking about it too much tended to give him a headache the times he’d tried to ponder it, but he knew that Takemichi now wasn’t his Takemitchy.
And if it wasn’t his Takemitchy walking around Japan, that then meant he wouldn’t remember any of it in the future after he grew up. But whether Takemitchy had the same presence as the one he grew to love didn’t matter- because it was still Takemitchy in the end. Past, present, future. Whatever. Takemichi grew up into the present version of him that he’d known, and Mikey would pine after him all the same.
Really, Mikey knows better than to reach out, but he doesn’t think he can be alone on Christmas. Not this year. Is it terribly selfish to spend time with someone who won’t remember it?
Yes, it was.
Was that going to stop Mikey?
And so, Mikey came to the conclusion that if Takemitchy wasn’t going to remember it in the future, then he had nothing to lose. He’d start stealing moments with the past version of his Takemitchy, who would certainly grow up to never remember their times on Christmas together.
He’ll let himself be selfish just this once, just this once before he leaves Takemitchy be for good. Then go their separate ways.
Besides, it wasn’t like he was doing past Takemitchy any harm. He’d make sure they had a good holiday together, would keep Takemitchy safe and away from any harm while he had him in his clutches. And if Takemitchy told anyone about their holidays- well, he was pretty sure that no one would believe it.
Mikey did like the idea that the memories they’ll share together would stay between the two of them. He’ll always treasure those memories in his heart, even as Takemitchy inevitably forgot them.
Asking Takemitchy to not tell anyone would help too. Hopefully, Takemitchy would listen to him.
From what Mikey remembered, Takemitchy had parents that weren’t around a lot. Which meant that his friend wouldn’t have any Christmas plans that had to do with family. They were alike in that way, at the very least for the holidays. But he had no way of knowing if Takemitchy had already made any plans with anyone. The very idea of it made Mikey’s heart twist, disliking the notion of it. He was determined to spend Christmas with him- Christmas Eve.
It starts with a text.
He messages Takemichi, asking if he’s got any holiday plans.
It’s much bolder than he’d ever normally be. But he’s got to be straightforward with Takemichi right now, to try to prevent any opportunity for the bleach blonde to ask anyone they both know what he means.
And to be frank, he was hoping that the past version of Takemitchy was…. thick enough to not catch onto the fact that they weren’t supposed to be talking. And all the connotations of them being together on Christmas Eve.
It’s apparent that an angel’s smiling down upon Mikey at this moment, because Takemichi messages him back with an affirmation that he’s free of any plans.
Mikey then texts him back, saying that he’s made plans for the two of them on Christmas Eve. Takemitchy offers up his house for Mikey to spend the night so they get more time to hang out together. It all works out beautifully, and Mikey further clarifies that he wishes it to be just the two of them.
He wants Takemichi to have a memorable Christmas, after all. To have a nice time together with him, before things inevitably got worse and it would no longer be safe for them to spend time together.
Mikey no longer feels a knot in his stomach when he thinks about Christmas. Instead, he only feels a sense of anticipation and excitement. He wonders how Takemitchy’s going to act, but Mikey’s certain that with the festive atmosphere they’re going to be surrounded in, he’ll loosen up a bit. They’ll take these few days to really enjoy their youth before any last bits of innocence slip away from them. They’d just be two teenagers together, two friends (Some part of Mikey still considered them friends), a boy with feelings for the kindest and bravest person he’s ever known. His crybaby hero.
He deserved to have a nice time.
Mikey’s planned for them to go ice skating. He doesn’t remember the last time he’s ever ice skated, but it surely couldn’t be that hard could it? It wasn’t like he was going to be attempting to do any jumps or quadruple lutz’s or anything. He knows he’s gone before, but it must’ve been when he was very small. But simple skating would be good enough. He could already picture the two of them ice skating. Bundled up in coats and scarves, Takemitchy with a set of fuzzy ear muffs on his head with his hair down. Mikey with a freshly made taiyaki in his mouth, desperately trying to stop it from dropping onto the ice below them while keeping his balance at the same time.
Takemitchy, laughing at him. Being more graceful on the ice than he could’ve expected.
It’s a nice little daydream.
Hopefully, he’ll be able to convince Takemitchy to go ice skating with him. He’ll coax him out onto the ice if he had to.
Mikey figured it would be a manner of faking it till he makes it.
Tomorrow’s Christmas Eve, and although Mikey would never admit it, he’d secretly beside himself in excitement. He’s already packed an overnight bag for him to bring to Takemitchy’s house when he drives his Babu to pick him up in the morning. He’s slept over at Takemitchy’s house before, a futon set up in his room beside his bed. But he’s not sure if this Takemitchy remembers it, but he’s certain he’ll sleep in his room again.
Mikey never did actually sleep in the futon that Takemitchy set up for him.
They’d slept next to each other, a few times. It was all perfectly platonic, they’d sleep with space between them on the bed. It’s just that Takemitchy’s bed is so comfy and he can’t resist snuggling himself into the covers when he’s faced with a really nice bed. Mikey loves his sleep and he loves his comfort while sleeping.
However if this Takemitchy insists he sleeps on the futon, then on the futon Mikey would sleep.
Sure he may protest on principle and maybe beg a little, but he'd ultimately bend to Takemichi's wishes. He didn’t want to truly upset him, not on a holiday and especially not with a version of him that he wasn’t used to dealing with.
It’s hard for Mikey to fall asleep.
His mind runs rampant with thoughts of how their day is going to turn out being. Perhaps part of that excitement is because of the knowledge that it’s going to be a little secret between the two of them. Something that the two of them could have for themselves.
Mikey needs the holidays to turn out well for them, he doesn’t know what he’ll do if things end up going sour. He’s already told Koko and Sanzu to take the holiday for themselves and to inform the rest of the gang of that fact. He's not going to have a meeting or request anything of them on Christmas Eve or Day.
The next morning, Mikey wakes up way earlier than he usually did. But no matter, because the faster he got ready and drove over to Takemichi’s house, the sooner that the two of them could spend time together. It’s with sleepy eyes and sluggish limbs that Mikey climbs out of the warmth of his bed, brushing his hair with his brush. Before then putting his hair back in it’s usual half ponytail with some of the front pieces hanging out. He makes sure to brush his teeth especially well, before dressing himself warmly for the day, since there’s snow outside.
Bundled in a warm coat and scarf, Mikey slings his overnight bag across his shoulder before heading outside, to where his Babu is parked. He messages Takemitchy, saying that he’s on his way and to expect him soon.
Due to Mikey making last minute plans for the two of them, he doesn’t actually have a present prepared for him. Gifts aren’t too common other than just for kids or between couples, but Mikey’s definitely not a couple with Takemitchy. But still, he wants Takemitchy to have something to remember him by- so he figures he’ll buy something for Takemitchy when they’re out together, when the bleach blonde isn’t looking.
He does think it’ll be kind of romantic- Emma certainly would’ve approved of it.
Again, Mikey wasn’t usually the type to be bold about his feelings. But he didn’t have anything to lose today, and it was the bit of bravery that he needed.
Of course, nothing would top the twin bike he’d gifted Takemitchy as a present. But he wasn’t looking to do anything too grandiose, he just wanted Takemichi to be happy in his presence.
Mikey drives his bike, navigating the streets and weaving in and out of cars to get to Takemichi’s house. He parks his bike outside the familiar house, before walking up the entryway and knocking at the door. Less than half a minute later, Mikey’s greeted with the familiar figure of Takemichi.
“Hello.” Mikey greets him, hoping to god that things won’t be awkward because they hadn’t really interacted since the last time Toman was actually a thing. “Merry Christmas Eve.” Mikey tacks on, his hands shoved into his pockets.
Takemichi seems to take it in stride though, hand curling into a thumbs up position before jerking his hand backwards. “Come drop your stuff off in my room.” He’s instructed by the bleach blonde. Mikey nods once, stepping inside the house and looking around him.
There’s not too many decorations on the wall. There’s a few Christmassy things set up, but that’s about it. He makes the familiar trek to Takemitchy’s room, still knowing the way even though he hasn’t been here for quite a while.
Mikey sets his bag down on the ground, where there’s already a familiar futon set up on the ground. He pats his pockets once to make sure he has his wallet with him, before turning towards Takemitchy and leveling him with a look.
“Are you ready to go?” He asks, spinning his keys around his pointer finger.
Takemichi’s hair has grown a bit longer since the last time he saw him. He looks good though, his hair’s down and he’s dressed warmly for the weather. He doesn’t know if Takemichi’s wearing any of those tees with weird writing on it again, but his sense of style seems to have slightly improved.
Takemichi nods at him, eyes shining with curiosity as to what they were going to do.
Mikey didn’t have an itinerary or anything, but he did have a basic idea of what he wanted them to do for the day.
Mikey leads them out of the house, briefly pausing when they step outside to let Takemichi lock up behind him. Then, he seats himself on his bike and starts it up, waiting for Takemichi to settle in behind him and wrap his arms securely around his waist. Mikey glances behind him briefly, telling Takemichi to “hold on tight” before he starts driving. As Mikey drives through the streets, speeding up the pace of the bike to get to their first destination faster, Takemichi presses himself closer to him. Mikey can feel the way Takemichi presses his forehead against his back, it making him feel all warm inside.
Takemitchy’s warmth contrasts the cold around him, which he likes very much. Mikey keeps his gaze forwards though, determined to get them to their destination safely.
Driving at this speed gives Mikey a rush, feeling the wind through his hair and hearing the roar of his bike. He can’t help but crack a smile at the feeling of it all, so content to have Takemichi here with him in these moments.
They finally park somewhere that’s close to downtown. Mikey hasn’t eaten yet, and he suspects that Takemichi hasn’t either. So his first objective is going to find them some food to eat for breakfast as they wander around and look at all the sights. The square’s bustling with people- couples, families, the like. There’s so many lights everywhere, and there’s Christmas trees set up with tinsel and pretty ornaments. It’s enough to put Mikey in a bit of a good mood already.
Side by side they walk, crossing the street to get close to the hubbub. He perks up a bit when he spots a KFC, ushering Takemichi to walk faster with him so they can order food and snag a spot before it fills up completely. Despite it still being pretty early in the morning, things are already starting to fill up.
Ordering KFC chicken on Christmas is a tradition in Japan, after all. It wouldn’t be a proper Christmas celebration between the two of them if they didn’t indulge in any traditions at all. “Find a spot for us to sit at.” Mikey instructs Takemitchy, getting into line already to order for them. He pushes away the offer of Takemitchy’s wallet, shaking his head. “I asked you out. I’ll pay.” He insists.
It’s a few moments later that he realizes the implications of his words. But Takemitchy had already walked away by then, so Mikey just straightens up and pretends he didn’t say something that could potentially make things awkward between the two of them. Glancing down at his phone, which he’d flipped open to check for any messages. There were none waiting for him, but he went ahead to his messaging app to type out a text to his ojiisan.
‘Happy Christmas, I’ll see you tomorrow. - まんじろう ’ Signing off with his name, although there was nobody else that would be sending his grandpa well wishes for the holidays.
Once he moves up in line, he orders a small bucket of kentucky fried chicken to split with Takemitchy. He opted for one of the smaller sizes since there was no doubt that the two of them would be eating throughout the day, so it was pointless to over eat so early on in the day. Once Mikey has the bucket of chicken in hand, he weaves through the people in the shop to find where Takemitchy has decided for them to sit. He places the bucket down in the middle of the table before sitting down across from him.
Mikey offers Takemichi a closed eye smile, leaning closer to the table. “I didn’t get anything that was too big, so we’d still have room to eat food from different stalls.” He explained, before looking at his friend for his reaction. Takemichi peers down at the bucket of chicken, before looking back up at Mikey.
“I didn’t know you were the type to adhere to traditions like these.” Takemichi points out. Mikey can only shrug at him in response, before the two of them exchange smiles. “We may as well go the extra mile now.” He says, since they were already going to be spending the entire day together.
The two of them take their time eating their way through the bucket of chicken. Mikey didn’t get the option that came with cake, certain that he’d be able to buy strawberry shortcake for them pretty easily as they walked around downtown. Yet another Christmas tradition, but he kind of wanted to buy a big slice that the two of them could share.
Once only bones were left in the bucket, Mikey wipes at his mouth and stands up from his seat. Takemichi moves before he can, grabbing the bucket and throwing it away before rejoining him at his side.
“Stay close.” Mikey tells Takemitchy, almost tempted to grab onto his wrist. “I don’t want to lose you in the crowd.” A few seconds go by before he thinks fuck it, and grabs onto Takemitchy’s wrist. It's not anything he hasn’t done with Takemitchy before, but the last time it happened it was with Takemitchy from the future. He holds Takemitchy’s wrist in a gentle yet firm grip, before leading him out into the crowd.
He figures they’ll look around for a bit and just stop when they see something that really catches their eye. It’s been a long time since Mikey’s been at the center of Christmas celebrations and it’s a bit overwhelming, there’s so much to look at. But he’s happy to have Takemitchy here with him, happy that he can steal these moments with him and pretend like everything is okay.
Mikey’s heard that the past version of Takemitchy is a bit cold. But he’s spent time with him before, he must’ve. And Takemitchy right now, seems so, so warm. It seems as if they’re both infected with the holiday spirit, as fleeting as it may truly be. He wishes to cherish what they have right now. They’ll both live in the moment for the time being, instead of pondering the past or future.
They walk around for a little while, occasionally stopping to look at the little trinkets. Eventually, they come by a stall that sells freshly made taiyaki. Before Mikey can stop himself he’s already stepping up to order, leading Takemitchy with him. Mikey leans in close, asking what flavour Takemitchy would prefer to get. He has to speak a bit loudly because of the volume of noises around them, but he easily gets an answer from Takemitchy.
Mikey orders six taiyaki, three in the original red bean paste flavour, and three others in flavours that Takemitchy had picked. Apple pie, chestnut paste, and chocolate. More festive flavours than he typically gets for himself He pays for them once again, before slipping his wallet back into his pocket and standing off to the side with Takemitchy. He asks Takemitchy if there’s anything in particular he’d like to do, the bleach blonde taking a few moments to think it through before requesting to see the different light displays.
Done, and done.
There’s so many beautiful light displays they’ll be able to look at in the area, and Mikey almost wishes he brought along a camera to capture Takemitchy’s form against the lights when they do go look at them. He supposes he can take pictures on his flip phone, and maybe ask a stranger to take pictures of the two of them later on.
They’re given a little paper bag filled with the taiyaki when it’s done cooking, the ones he’d ordered are on one side and the rest on the other. Mikey happily takes one into his mouth, holding it in between his teeth. He offers the bag to Takemitchy, who opts to try the apple pie flavour first.
Mikey has to eat it a little bit slow since it’s still hot, but it just tastes so good and he thinks that it’s well worth it. He eats through his first taiyaki, finishing it faster than Takemitchy does. He turns towards him, tilting his head slightly as he looks at the other. “How do you like yours?” Mikey asks, it’s a flavour he’s never had before. Takemitchy affirms that it’s good, before lifting it towards him and offering him a bite. Mikey leans down, biting into the taiyaki before straightening up as he starts chewing.
It’s pretty good, he finds. Although red bean paste will always remain his favourite flavour. With the bag in one hand, he grabs onto Takemitchy’s wrist once more. “Let’s eat and start heading towards the larger light displays.” He proposes, taking the lead. The pair walk towards the lights, which glimmer happily as they come closer.
There’s some that imitate wisteria flowers, hanging down from the above as they walk underneath some store awnings. The bushes and trees nearby are fully lit up with lights, with there being little penguins made out of lights as well. Fake flowers entirely made out of lights frame the walkway as well, and over in the more grassy area away from some of the shops are some Christmas trees entirely made up of lights.
It’s all wonderful to look at, as they eat their way through the taiyaki Mikey bought for them both. At some point, Mikey asks for Takemitchy to stay still before stepping back a few paces and snapping a picture of him on his phone. He immediately makes it his lock screen, before flipping his phone shut and slipping it back into his pocket.
Once they have their fill of the light displays, they head back towards the more urban part. There’s a stand handing out free hot cider and hot chocolate- the two of them get one cup each. Mikey getting the hot chocolate and Takemitchy the hot cider. They wander through the streets together, occasionally exchanging drinks before switching them back.
Mikey tries very hard to not think about how they keep exchanging indirect kisses.
They’re soon empty handed, having eaten up all their taiyaki and hot drinks.
Mikey ponders for a moment what they should do next, before brightening up. “Come, follow me!” He declares, grabbing Takemitchy’s wrist. The two of them race through the crowd, heading back to the area he parked his bike in. “Where are you taking me?!” Takemitchy questions, his voice full of laughter.
Mikey doesn’t look back, instead just singing out “You’ll see!”
Fifteen minutes later, they’re walking up to an outside skating rink. Just as he’d daydreamed last night, except Takemitchy isn’t wearing any ear muffs. Mikey’s not got any taiyaki in his mouth either, but it doesn’t matter. The two of them rent ice skates, Mikey fitting his feet into them and lacing them up with a bit of difficulty. It takes Takemichi a bit longer to lace up his own, before they take baby steps towards the ice.
Takemichi glides onto the ice first, arms pinwheeling as he attempts to catch his balance. Mikey can’t help laughing at him, sticking a red lollipop he’d snatched earlier from a shop into his mouth as he steps onto the ice after him. Mikey’s arms are stuck out to balance himself, but he does a much better job than Takemitchy. “Have you ever skated before?” Mikey asks, talking around the lollipop currently in his mouth. Takemichi’s answer is as expected, when he shakes his head at him. They skate further onto the ice, approaching the middle of the rink.
Mikey lifts a hand up to remove the lollipop from his mouth, eyes glinting. “I can tell.” He teases, popping the candy back into his mouth before skating towards Takemichi. He quickly heads straight for him, reaching his hands out and wiggling them at his companion. Takemichi can’t skate backwards in time, ending up tripping over his skates and falling backwards on his bum, propped up on his elbows.
Mikey’s eyes widen, and he opens his mouth- only for the lollipop to plop down onto the ice, a curse escaping from his lips when he can’t stop himself from gliding forwards on time. He crashes into Takemitchy, falling on top of him, only managing to stop himself from dropping his weight on Takemichi when he throws his hands out to catch himself.
Their faces are incredibly close for a few moments, as Mikey attempts to catch his breath. Both of their cheeks are dusted pink- he can’t tell if it’s because of the cold or not. They blink at each other, before Mikey cracks first, bursting out into laughter.
He rolls away from him, sitting by his side on the ice. He hadn’t laughed this hard in a long time, his thoughts racing at how close they were to kissing each other. Once Mikey gathers himself, he moves so he’s standing up, brushing off his pants before extending a hand out to Takemitchy to help him stand.
“I can really tell you’ve got no experience.” Mikey teases.
“Oh, can you shut up about that.” Takemitchy returns.
Mikey doesn’t skate threateningly towards Takemitchy after that, but he doesn’t let go of his teasing. He silently mourns the loss of his cherry lollipop, which he can still taste the remains of on his tongue.
The two of them skate around the rink for a while longer, Mikey grabbing onto Takemitchy’s hand at some point so they can skate together, supporting him. By the time they finally tire of ice skating, both of their cheeks are red from exertion, Mikey having loosened the scarf around his neck at some point.
They eventually leave the skating rink, exchanging their skates for regular shoes before purchasing bottles of water from a nearby vending machine. “Skating’s harder than it looks.” Mikey comments, Takemitchy humming in assent. Once they’ve cooled down a bit, Mikey looks towards Takemitchy once more.
“There’s a Christmas Market nearby. We can easily walk there.” He suggests, Takemichi easily nodding along. “Sounds good to me.” Takemitchy agrees, and so the pair start heading towards the direction Mikey had pointed out. It’s not long before they arrive there. There’s so many shops that are set up, all glowing with lights. Everything he can see is Christmas themed, creating an inviting atmosphere with the music that’s playing all around them.
Mikey can’t help himself from buying some cute knick knacks, keeping them in a little bag he was given. Takemichi buys some too, insisting to use his own money this time. They were in the middle of looking at one of the stalls when Mikey spotted something in the corner of his eye. When he turned his head to look, it was a couple carrying a slice of Christmas cake- strawberry shortcake. He’d wanted some earlier.
Mikey frowns slightly, leaning a bit to look at the direction of where the couple came from. Once he spotted the stall, he tugged at Takemitchy’s sleeve to nag him.
“Takemitchy, lets go.” He implores, dragging Takemitchy by the sleeve and towards the stall that was selling cakes.
“Okay, okay. Sheesh.” Is Takemitchy’s response, as he has to quicken his steps to catch up.
Once they’re first in line, Mikey orders a slice of strawberry shortcake for the two of them to share, asking for two forks. Once Mikey pays and has his prize in hand, he turns to Takemichi and extends the plate out to him.
“Have some.” Mikey says, giving Takemichi a fork. Mikey slices a bit of cake with his own fork, helping support the plate with his other hand. He made sure to get a piece with strawberry in it, before shovelling it into his mouth. Chewing for a bit, before swallowing and licking over his lips. “Mmmh,” He says, setting his fork down for a moment. “I never get tired of cake.”
Mikey watches Takemitchy for his own reaction to the cake.
“It’s really good.” Takemitchy says, nodding positively. “I haven’t had Christmas cake for a while.”
“Did you miss it?” Mikey asks, keeping his eyes on Takemichi.
“A little bit.” Takemitchy allows.
‘I’ve missed you,’ Mikey thinks. He has to keep in mind that Takemichi in front of him isn’t the version of Takemitchy that he once knew.
Mikey picks up the fork once more and starts slicing another piece to eat with the edge of his fork.
They start eating their way through the strawberry shortcake in front of them. When Mikey decides he’s done, there’s only a little piece left that he’ll let Takemitchy eat. “You can have the rest.” Mikey informs, setting his fork down on the plate. They’re already standing pretty close, but the amount of people around them forces them to be closer than they normally would be. It’s when Mikey’s this close that he really gets a proper look at Takemitchy’s face again, admiring the blues of his eyes before his gaze flickers down towards the faux blonde’s mouth.
Takemitchy has a bit of whipped cream at the corner of his mouth.
Before Mikey can think twice, he’s leaning in closer and lifting his hand towards Takemitchy’s face, using his thumb to wipe away the cream there. “You just have a little something…” His voice is a little lower than usual, as he turns his thumb around and brings it to his own mouth. Mindlessly sucking the cream off his thumb, licking at it before he drops his hand to his side.
Takemichi’s eyes are wide, as they share a look. They stare at each other for a few moments, Mikey’s heart picking up it’s pace in his chest. Seeing who gives first.
It’s Mikey who gives first.
He doesn’t even know if Takemitchy’s still together with Hina, but he can’t bring himself to even care in this moment.
Mikey reaches up to cup Takemitchy’s cheek, gently rubbing his thumb across his cheekbone. Mikey moves in closer, before stopping at the very last moment before their lips touch. He whispers against Takemitchy’s lips; “Can I kiss you?”. Takemitchy breathes back a yes, and it’s all the permission that he needs before he connects their lips.
It’s sweet. Takemitchy tastes like strawberry shortcake and the cider from earlier.
Mikey pulls away for a brief moment, before closing the gap once more. Mikey’s first and second kiss now officially belong to Takemitchy, and he wouldn’t have it any other way.
He doesn’t even notice that somewhere along the way, Takemitchy had dropped the plate of cake onto the ground, it being upended next to them.
Mikey finally pulls away once more, feeling the heat starting to rise in his cheeks. “I’m sorry, I just couldn’t help myself.” He said, scratching at the back of his neck.
“It’s alright. I didn’t mind it.” Takemitchy’s words sound reassuring.
Mikey looks back up at Takemitchy, full of surprise. “Really?” He clears his throat, before speaking once more. “It was my first kiss.”
“I wouldn’t have guessed.. you’re not a bad kisser.”
“I’m not? So, that means you liked it then?” Mikey’s now looking at the ground, avoiding Takemitchy’s gaze for once.
“Yeah. I mean, I’ve kissed Hina loads of times before. But I liked kissing you the best.”
Mikey can’t help brightening up at those words, looking back up at Takemitchy. “Oh.” He says stupidly, wiping his suddenly sweaty hands on his pants. “That’s good to hear.”
He’s got no idea at all how to be smooth. He smiles at Takemichi, before noticing the cake that’s dropped onto the pavement below them. “Oh no.” He says, kneeling down to pick up their mess.
“Oh no.” Takemichi echoes, squatting down as well to help clean up.
They end up trashing the rest of the cake alongside the utensils, before continuing to wander around the Christmas Market.
Mikey later pretends to get lost, before running off to buy a gift for Takemichi. He ends up buying them matching ornaments, before getting Takemichi a snow globe with a little cherry blossom tree on the inside. When he finds Takemitchy once more, he presses the gifts into his hands.
“Don’t mention it.” He says, the corners of his lips curving up into a small smile. “I just wanted you to have something to remember this night by.”
Christmas was normally a holiday celebrated by couples, which the two of them definitely weren’t. But them having a kiss on Christmas Eve was pretty fucking romantic, even if Takemichi’s not going to remember it when he grows up. It’s why he wanted Takemichi to have something tangible to keep.
He wonders if present Takemichi’s going to have a little cherry blossom snow globe somewhere in that apartment of his.
They spend the rest of their day in similar fashion, wandering around different shops and buying things that caught their eye. When evening starts to approach, Mikey drives them all the way back to Takemichi’s house. It’s together in Takemitchy’s bed that the two of them watch all sorts of Christmas movies together. Takemichi sat on the bed, leaning against the headboard. Mikey with his head in Takemichi’s lap, his eyes half lidded as his hair’s played with.
The day’s been exhausting for them both, and they both end up falling asleep in Takemichi’s bed.
If Takemitchy woke up sometime in the middle of the night, he never bothered to wake Mikey up and tell him to go sleep on the futon.
When Mikey wakes up, it’s with a pit in his stomach. Yesterday was the happiest that he’s ever felt in a long time, but all things have to end eventually. The little bit of happiness he’d experienced yesterday wasn’t meant to last, it shouldn’t have happened in the first place. It was stolen happiness, stolen moments with the boy he felt such deep feelings for. But even so, he can’t help but to not regret any of it.
Mikey sits up in bed, looking down at where Takemichi’s still fast asleep. With a gentle motion, he brushes some hair away from Takemitchy’s face, before his fingers trace his lips. He leans down a bit, hardly daring to breathe. Mikey’s given Takemitchy his first and second kiss. He wants to steal a third, just for him to remember and cherish.
He’s going to do it.
Mikey leans down further, pressing their lips together for a brief moment, kissing him. He pulls away and sighs softly, stroking Takemitchy’s cheek. “Goodbye, Takemitchy. I won’t forget our time together.” He promises, before climbing out of bed. He picks up his overnight bag and shopping bags from yesterday, not looking back as he leaves Takemitchy’s room. Mikey’s intent to fulfil his promise from last year, to ride with Baji and Shinichiro on Christmas Day. He’ll come back to his ojiisan afterwards with some food for them to share, and then life will go back to normal.
He’ll leave Takemitchy alone for good, keep going on whatever path he was currently going down with the Kanto Manji gang.
If Mikey had looked back, he would’ve seen Takemichi sitting up in his bed, fingers touching his lips as he stared inquisitively at the other’s back. “Won’t forget?” He whispers to himself, a small frown on his face. The goodbye sounds awfully permanent.
Takemitchy’s been awake the entire time, and he can’t even begin to wonder what Mikey was going on about. But since Mikey had asked him to keep quiet about their holiday together, he’ll honour that wish.
If it snows the hardest on Christmas Day than it has all month- well, it may or may not be related to the cold that’s starting to seep into Mikey’s heart with every step away from Takemitchy he goes.