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Tell Me Something Sweet (to get me by)

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I just feel complete when you’re by my side.

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Hanagaki Takemichi does not participate in gossip. He doesn’t participate in it, and he certainly doesn’t care about what people think of him. He knows he’s weird with his curly wayward hair that sticks up in every direction, and his almost horrific taste in clothing (Mitsuya’s words, not his), and he’s never been foolish enough to listen to the drunken, giggling words of Hakkai and Souya.

No, he would never do that.

So, he doesn’t know what to do with himself when he browses the web and checks to see if the rumours are true for himself, it’s past midnight and well into the early hours of the morning and his headaches from staying up too long finishing his reports and completing puzzles.

He's quite sure that the rumours are 100% bullshit, just something someone made up for a laugh.

Better safe than sorry, although, he’s not sure which would be worse in this situation – safe or sorry.

Fuck.

He ignores the weird, hollow feeling that he gets in his chest and continues to browse through social media for the image everyone is talking about, and there it is. It’s a nice photo, he’s willing to admit that. And he unconsciously smiles, as his eyes trace over Mikey’s features.

Mikey and the girl, he reads, Mako, both look so happy in the picture, both smiling widely (which is uncommon for Mikey, unless he’s around the gang) with their arms around each other. He hadn’t wanted to believe it, even staring it in the face, he still doesn’t want to believe it.

She is so fucking pretty. And she’s young, all beautiful long blonde hair, and pretty brown eyes, eyes that are framed with the longest and blackest lashes he’s ever seen.

And something in the back of Takemichi’s mind whispers that maybe this is all his fault. Maybe he wasn’t a good enough boyfriend, maybe he didn’t put out enough. Maybe he didn’t pay enough attention to the one he loves more than anyone else in the fucking world.

Shit – probably.

It doesn’t make it any easier to process though. No less painful.

He’s hunched over too long, concentrating hard on the way Mikey’s smiling and the way his toned arm is wrapped around Mako’s shoulder.

He can’t look away.

He still remembers the feeling of that arm wrapped around him. How safe it made him feel, all muscled warmth and protectiveness. But this is different though. He’s not the one in the picture, instead, it is a pretty girl who looks like a fucking supermodel compared to him, and he – well – he’s just Takemichi.

Plain and ordinary, a little too pale and skinny but that’s all. So Takemichi can’t help the insecurity that wells up inside of him, he can’t help it when they look so fucking perfect together.

Takemichi realizes that he’s been sitting at his computer desk for far too long, and his expression wavers, his smile loosening until it falls away completely. He really does try to smile through the wave of jealousy that comes over him, but it swallows him up faster than he can control. The weight of all the unpleasant emotion inside of him cracks like a ruptured volcano in his chest.

He clicks on a few more of Mako’s pictures and there they are again. Mikey’s smiling in the picture again, and Takemichi feels his chest constrict more painfully. Mikey of course smiles a lot, but those smiles are usually filled with mischief and teasing, but this smile is small and intimate. Something only reserved for the ones that are close to his heart. And his eyes skim through the comments below the picture.

You look so good together.’

‘Mako, you didn’t tell me you had a boyfriend.’

The picture entitled, ‘Grabbing breakfast with my partner in crime.’ Makes something bitter rise like acid in the back of his throat.

Not at all caring of the damage that may be caused to his computer, he cuts the power by flipping the off switch at the mains and sits in the darkness of his bedroom, listening to the pitter-patter of the steady rain falling against his windowpane, his temples throb and he sucks in a deep breath, forcing himself to count to ten.

A small hiccup worms past his lips as he screws his eyes shut, willing the sobs in his chest to die before they escape.

Don’t fucking cry; he mentally scolds himself, angrily biting down on the inside of his cheek. It doesn’t help, and within minutes hot tears are slipping down his cheeks.

Reluctantly, he uncurls his stiff muscles, and moves to his bed he lets himself fall back and sink into the mattress, curling up into a foetal position, stomach clenching painfully as silent sobs wracked his frame. Gradually he falls asleep on his tear-soaked pillow, praying that when he wakes everything will be back to how it originally was, and his broken heart is mended.

That night, Takemichi dreamt of the scars that were scattered along his body were stitched together with red threads that glittered gold in the shine of the sunlight, red threads that wrapped tightly around his little finger, and he dreamt of Mikey, his Mikey.

Mikey, whispering words of love and affection, whispering to him that the future was buried under his flawed, scared skin and not in the stars above. He dreamt of eyes as dark as twilight, that chased away the nightmares that lingered in his unconscious mind, for at least a little while.

When he wakes; it’s with his phone shaking in drawn-out buzzes, he groans, batting uselessly at the hard vibrations of his phone, and only manages to knock it off his nightstand. Sighing, he blinks blearily at the far wall before groping at the floor, fingers sleep clumsy and numb.

He taps on his phone a few times, clumsily answering it and buries his face in his still slightly damp pillow. ‘Lo?” he answers his eyes and throat a little raw from crying.

The voice on the other end of the line is so familiar to him, that the pang of hurt that shoots through him, is a lot sharper than he’d expected.

Takemitchy~” Mikey’s voice was bright and upbeat, the delighted smile on his face was clearly heard in the tone of his voice. Perhaps a tad bit too upbeat, Takemichi’s chest constricts painfully as he forces himself to speak.

“M-Mikey,” he croaks, voice barely heard over his own pulse, his heart was beating a little too fast and his breath caught in his lungs at the sound of Mikey’s deep voice.

He loves him so fucking much.

“Are you alright?” Mikey asked worriedly, and the clear concern in his voice makes everything so much worse.

“Yeah,” he gasps out, “I just – just woke up, long night and all.” He laughed shakily covering his face with his arm.

Do you want to talk about it?” Mikey offers his tone gentle. He hates this, hates being away from Takemichi for long stretches of time. He hates that when he’s away, the nightmares that Takemichi suffers through make a return, and there’s nothing he can do to stop them. He can’t run his hands down the smooth slope of Takemichi’s spine to calm him. He can’t whisper words of comfort into his ear, and he can’t curl his stronger body around Takemichi’s protectively.

He can’t and it kills him.

“No,” Takemichi mutters, his voice muffled by the arm across his face.

Oh – okay!” Something is wrong, Mikey can feel it deep in his bones. The line is silent for a few minutes, and he can Takemichi stretch on the other end, yawning quietly and humming as his joints pop. He can picture it clearly in his mind’s eye, something that he’s seen Takemichi do probably hundreds of times. His muscles moving underneath his pale skin, he can picture him arching his spine and letting out a long – low moan of satisfaction.

His throat is suddenly dry, and he wishes that he was with him instead of Manila, instead of being 5 hours away doing stupid business deals with Tenjiku.

“When does your flight leave?” The obviously still sleepy man asks.

“In a couple of hours, Izana-nii and Kakucho are coming with me, instead of going back home to Yokohama, and we’ll meet you at Pah-Chins for the gathering!”

There’s silence between them again, which feels so wrong. They are never quiet together, their either laughing like maniacs, or moaning and singing their love for one another. He misses him so fucking much.

I love you,” he whispers out so softly that Mikey almost misses it.

Mikey isn’t sure about a lot of things in his life, but there’s one thing he’s absolutely positive about and it’s his love for Takemichi. He has never, and will never love anyone like he loves Takemichi, not even pretty girls with long blonde hair, who everyone thinks he’s dating.

Takemichi is the only thing he knows for sure. Takemichi is his always.

So, it’s no surprise that he whispers back, with so much fondness in his voice it almost hurts, “I love you too – so much.” He closes his eyes, hands gripping the phone near his ear even tighter than before that its shape would probably imprint into his hand.

“I’ll see you when I arrive.” Takemichi whispers, his throat tightening against the words. “Chifuyu and I have the address to Pah-Chins, so we won’t get lost.”

Mikey laughs, and the sound sends a mixture of warmth and sorrow through Takemichi’s chest. “Yeah, please don’t get lost, I need you.” Swallowing past the lump in his throat, he laughed along with Mikey, “I – I need to go now, I need to shower and change before Chifuyu picks me up.”

Okay,” Mikey says quietly from the other end of the line, “Be safe.”

“I will, bye.” He says before hanging up and throwing himself backwards onto his bed. Maybe it was all just what he thought it was, just rumours. Mikey wasn’t a cheater; he wouldn’t do anything to hurt him.

You hope, the little voice at the back of his head whispers to him.

 

~

 

A few hours later, they're on the road and the drive to the huge house that Pah-Chin owns felt like a blur to Takemichi, he was lost in his own little world, his mind playing scenario after scenario of what would happen when he met up with Mikey and the others. Would Mikey still hug him tightly in greeting and gently kiss his neck? Would Mikey still hold his hand in public? Would Mikey admit that the rumours were true?

And the others, did they know about the rumours? Did they know if Mikey and Mako were secretly dating and were sparing his feelings? Because he was known as the ‘cry-baby’ within the group.

The thoughts ran in circles around his head. The others offered to pick them up, but Chifuyu refused, stating that he liked to drive places, and the others shouldn’t go out of their way.

Throughout the drive, Chifuyu kept sending him worried glances, asking him if he was okay whenever they stopped at red lights. He couldn’t lie to his best friend, Chifuyu would see through every fib he said anyway so it was pointless. So, he told him the truth, told him about the pictures online and how everyone thought that Mikey and Mako were dating. He watched as Chifuyu’s hands tightened on the wheel of Chifuyu’s Porsche, his knuckles turning white.

“Have you said anything to Mikey-Kun?” Chifuyu asks, turning back towards the road and waiting for the light to turn green.

“No, I don’t know if it’s true or not,” he said, leaning his head against the cold window as they started moving again.

Chifuyu hummed low in his throat, “You should talk to him, and tell him about the comments. If it worries you, then it should worry him too. He’ll understand.”

Takemichi stayed silent, watching the scenery pass him by; Pah-Chins home on the other side of the city, was vastly different from the ones the others of Toman owned in central Tokyo, and Takemichi wanted to absorb every site that he could.

Their car pulled to a stop outside a fancy house that was lit up like a beacon. He could hear music distantly through the car window, turning to Chifuyu they both smiled. This was where their friends were. It had been several months since the whole of Toman had gathered together. 

Everyone, together.

Getting out, they pulled their bags out of the trunk and made their way towards the front door. Chifuyu led the way and raised his large hand and knocked loudly on the door.

A few seconds later, the music was turned down and the door was opened revealing Pah-Chin. Pah was a sight for sore eyes, his black hair was styled in a slicked-back look, and he was dressed from head to toe in black.

“Fuck Pah-Chin, you look like you’re on your way to rob a bank!” Takemichi exclaimed laughing along with Chifuyu.

Pah threw his head back and laughed heartedly at the comment, “Takemichi! Chifuyu! It’s been too fucking long. C’mon in.” he gestured towards the stairs. “This place has plenty of room, so, pick any room you want, but some are already taken. Let me know if you guy’s need anything.”

Takemichi and Chifuyu nodded, heading towards the stairs with their bags. Pausing at the bottom, Takemichi turned to Pah-Chin, “Who’s all here?”

Pah-Chin stopped at the entrance to the living room, his hand on the door handle. “Everyone, you guys are the last to arrive.” The door in front of Pah opened, causing the third division captain to let out an embarrassingly high squeak in surprise.

Peh-Yan giggles at the noise his captain lets out, lumbering his way past Pah and Chifuyu, and pulling Takemichi into a bone-crushing hug.

“Pe-Peh – I can – can’t breathe,” he wheezed, struggling in Peh-Yan’s tight grip. Pah laughed at his red face before telling Peh-Yan to put him down. “Mikey will kill you if you break him.”

Peh just hummed in agreement, before letting Takemichi go with a small pat on his head. Grumbling in annoyance, he poked Peh in the ribs and continued his journey to find a room and ignoring the laughter coming from behind him. He could always share with Mikey; he didn’t think Pah-Chin would mind, seeing as their friends were comfortable with their relationship. It wasn’t a secret; everyone knew that they were dating. They weren't exactly - subtle with their feelings for one another. 

Pah was, after all, their biggest supporter and always made happy sighs and cooing noises at them whenever they hugged. But he didn’t want to push his luck, with Mikey and with Pah's hospitality.

Having a room to himself could also be his escape if he needed to breathe. He found a nice, empty one on the furthest side of Pah-Chins house, away from the loud music and hecticness of the party.

Unpacking his stuff, he quickly changed into his favourite ‘A Day to Remember’ shirt and some black, ripped skinny jeans, before there is a knock at his door.

“Partner; are you ready?” comes Chifuyu’s voice from the other side.

Together they make their way through the surprisingly crowded house. They spot the Kawata twins, Baji, and Draken sitting in the corner of the living room, Emma’s off to the other side of the room giggling with Hakkai and Mitsuya. Pah-Chin was right, everyone was here.

Nahoya takes a swig of his beer and catches a glimpse of them standing at the living room entrance, he cheers and waves them over with his perpetual grin stretching across his face, his cheeks slightly flushed from the alcohol he had consumed.

Draken's dark eyes watched them as they made their way through the crowd of people dancing to the music blaring in the background from Pah-Chin’s state-of-the-art speakers. Takemichi and Chifuyu looked good, both of them smiling happily, but there were dark marks under Takemichi’s eyes, his normally bright and shining eyes were a little dulled.

“Glad you boys could make it,” Draken said, offering them both a beer from the cooler at his feet. Chifuyu raised an eyebrow at the cooler, confusion written all over his face. “You’re probably wondering why we’ve got a cooler, and not keeping the beers in the fridge?” Baji asked, noticing the glance his vice-captain gave.

Takemichi and Chifuyu nodded their heads.

Draken gave a long-suffering sigh, “Wait a few minutes and you’ll understand why,” he muttered under his breath.

Takemichi titled his head to the side in the adorably confused way he always did when he didn’t understand something, then he heard a high-pitched giggle, unlike anything he had ever heard before that pierced through his ears.

“And – there it is ~.” The twins said together in a sing-song voice.

“What the holy fuck was that.” Chifuyu looked utterly appalled, looking around for the origin of the noise. The other people around him laughed slightly at his dismayed expression.

“That would be one of Pah-Chin’s friends. He invited some of his other friends, who in turn invited their friends, and that’s why the place is so crowded.”

Takemichi’s eyes widened, and he gasped in mock outrage, “Pah-Chin has other friends!”

Baji snorted into his beer and Draken shook his head at the bizarreness of his friend. In the distance between their corner and the kitchen, he could see Sanzu towering above everyone else in the kitchen, no doubt keeping an eye on their wayward commander.

From the corner of his eye, he could see Hakkai fumbling his way through the mass of partygoers towards them and in an instant, he’s scooping Takemichi up in a bear hug.

’Mitchy, it’s good to see you, it’s been ages!” Hakkai coos, his strong arms wrapping tightly around his saviour and lifting the smaller man off of the floor.

“Likewise, Hakkai,” Takemichi gasps out before spasming theatrically, taking a deep lungful of air and going limp in Hakkai’s arms, playing dead with his head heavy on the taller man’s shoulder.

“Oh no, I’ve killed him.” Hakkai laughed, raising Takemichi’s dead arm and watching it flop back down again. “I believe, I need to get rid of the evidence before the commander sees my dastardly deed, hmm. Chifuyu, help me bury ‘Mitchy.”

Chifuyu, leaving his wayward partner in the capable hands of the other captains and the vice commander, had wandered around to mingle within the divisions of Toman that had gathered, looked up from across the room and laughed at Hakkai holding up a deadweight Takemichi, and scampered over to them moving to pick up Takemichi’s legs.

“Eek!” Takemichi squealed as his feet left the floor.

“If you two bury me, I’ll haunt your skinny asses for eternity. And I won’t be a regular ghost, I’ll fucking pop up at the most inconvenient times.” Baji and the twins were rolling around the couch, gasping in stitches as Draken shook his head with the others at the younger’s actions, a fond smile curling his lips.

“I’ll sing Barbie Girl to you when you’re about to fall asleep, I’ll move your shit around so you can’t find anything, and most importantly, I’ll give you a live fucking commentary when you’re having sex.”

Baji was wheezing, watching Takemichi howl with his musical laughter.

“No. Fuck this. I’m out.” Chifuyu declared, his cheeks flushed from laughing and along with Hakkai, they swung Takemichi’s legs and set his body directly on top of Draken and Baji.

He loved Toman gatherings, where everyone was together, Takemichi was always the life of the party and Chifuyu loved his captain with all his heart. Loved the way he laughed when he was with his friends, loved the way he felt with all of them together. Like the whole world could end and he wouldn’t care, because he was surrounded by the people who he loved the most.

“Fucking hell, that was hilarious,” Baji gasped, his face flushed a brilliant red and Takemichi’s head was in his lap.

Takemichi giggled, “You know I like to be dramatic,” he stood up looking around, “Where are the others?” he inquired, looking around the crowd of unfamiliar faces that were now paying attention to them.

“They’re in the kitchen,” Draken nodded to the area where their commander was now visible through the parted crowd.

“Okay, I’ll be back soon.” Takemichi nodded to everyone and made his way through the crowd of strangers with little difficulty. The kitchen was a lot more crowded than the living room, seeing as it led to the beautiful back garden and pool. Many people were in bathing suits of some sort, taking full advantage of the still-warm day. Takemichi looked around the room, looking for the familiar pitch-black eyes and pale blonde hair. The high-pitched giggle was heard again and Takemichi smiled to himself, ducking his head as he heard a course of groans coming from the living room.

The kitchen was big, and as he made his way through the cluster of people, he finally spotted Mikey – who was sitting next to the girl in the social media pictures.

Fuck his entire life.

Their heads were bent together, whispering quietly and they were sitting so close that Takemichi was surprised one wasn’t in the other’s lap. They were oblivious to their surroundings, and Takemichi felt his heart stutter in his chest.

“They look happy together, don’t they?” A random girl Takemichi had never seen before, gushed in his ear.

Takemichi looks behind him at the girl and then flickers his eyes to the duo in front of him. However, after doing so, he felt the inside of his chest tightening, the blood under his skin boiling, and the feeling of his jaw clenching with such force, he swore his teeth would shatter.

He's no stranger to the dull, empty ache that comes with losing someone he loves. His parents divorced when he was a kid, his family coming and going throughout his life, childhood friends moving across the country to attend different schools. His one and only girlfriend in his life, Tachibana Hinata, left him when he refused to be her dirty little secret because her family disapproved of their relationship.

The only real and good things in his life was his mother, his middle-school friends and now Toman. They were the only things constant in his life. People he loved with all his essence, heart and soul. But now he’s scared, looking at Mikey and Mako still enraptured in their own world, he’s terrified that everything is tumbling down around him.

Takemichi clenches his fists against his hip and a dull ache goes through him. When he thinks of the small cuts along his hips, shame pinches at him. He wasn’t suicidal, he wouldn’t leave his family alone in the world, it would also break his mama’s heart. And he wouldn’t leave Chifuyu without his best friend, but the small cuts were a comfort, the small drops of blood that dripped down his hip reminded him that he was real and that he was alive.

He just wanted to feel something other than the loss and emptiness he felt weave about the delicate curves of his too fast-beating heart. When Mikey entered his life, he didn’t look at the scars in disgust like other people did when he undressed. He was a virgin when he and Mikey first had intercourse, the absolute worship in Mikey’s eyes and the gentle kisses he placed on the scars brought him to tears.

And Takemichi tries not to be selfish.

Honestly, he does.

He tries to keep the dark swirl of emotions that harbour in his chest from coming out because he’s never been good at dealing with his emotions, he’s a big fan of ignoring a problem until it goes away, and honestly, he’s not worth worrying over.

Mikey throws his head back, laughing at something Mako says, and the joyful sound sends unexpected sorrow through him. He was just fooling himself into believing he was more. And God, does that make him angry. Their group is big, huge by other gangs’ standards, and for as long as he can remember, he’s always thought that his spot was by Mikey’s side, after everything they've been through. And now he realizes that he was wrong, so, so wrong.

He feels like he’s struggling to keep his head above water, tight panicked sensation in his chest, and it’s hard to breathe, he’s sure he’s drowning on dry land.

It’s all too much.

He doesn’t want to be selfish, so when the girl asks him if he’s okay, he turns to her smiling and laughing agreeing with her that they do look happy together before walking back out of the kitchen and back towards Chifuyu and the others.

He’ll keep this hurt to himself because everyone deserves to be happy, even if he’s not and he’s okay with that. The laughter surrounding him is enough for him, for now.

 

~

 

“So, are you okay now?” Mikey asks, his dark eyes intent on Mako’s own. “I know how difficult things can be, just don’t let everything get to you. You know me and Emma are here for you, yeah?!”

“Yeah,” Mako replies, smiling brightly at him as he looks around the kitchen for the first time since they started their conversation.

“When did all these people get here?” Mikey looks so confused that Mako giggles at his expression.

The kitchen is so crowded that Mikey can’t even see the living room anymore, but he sees Sanzu by the back door, his eyes intently watching them and the people around the kitchen for any signs of possible danger. Mikey sees Pah at the poolside and excuses himself to go speak to his third-division captain.

Mako simply nods, and moves through the crowd to the living room, she waves at Emma and quickly takes the empty spot on the couch next to a girl with auburn hair – Yuzuha – if she remembers correctly. When Yuzuha’s beanpole of a brother, comes back from wherever he disappeared to a new crate of beers in hand, he raises a brow at her, shaking his head before moving to the crowd of people sitting by the other sofa, some with their backs against the wall, he takes a seat next to Emma’s boyfriend, Draken, and a man with dark curly hair and pale skin.

They’re playing cards – poker – she thinks, and Draken is looking over the man’s shoulder, giving tips while the little circle of people complains that they're cheating. A man with long black hair and golden eyes declares war, and the two twin men shout random illegible words around mouthfuls of chips.

The man with dark hair laughs, and it’s the same musical laughter that she vaguely heard from in the kitchen. She hears him call, what seems to be his close friends, sore losers. Her attention is once again stolen when she hears a commotion of people talking to the host of the house. Mikey is with him, and she smiles at the attention they’re getting.

Mikey deserves to be in the limelight, always. He’s sweet and funny, and he knows how to treat a girl kindly.

The group of people playing cards look in their direction, cheering and asking if their commander wants to play. Mako shakes her head, calling out Mikey’s name over the loud music and laughter surrounding them, but he doesn’t seem to hear her, instead, his dark eyes lock onto something and as she follows his gaze, she sees the pale man nod towards her childhood friend and gives him a smile that seems a little strained around the edges.

Mako watches as Mikey moves through the crowd once more, and kneels down towards the dark-haired man. Draken gets up to leave, his hand on Mikey’s shoulder in greeting.

The curly-haired man smiles at Draken as he stands to watch the card game, Draken nods before the man puts down his cards and shouts, “Royal Flush bitches!”

The circle of people groans loudly as the room bursts into laughter, loud and contagious. The man jumps up and high-fives Draken. Mikey laughs in delight along with them, and something buzzes warm in Mako’s stomach at the sound, buzzing underneath her skin and sending warmth to her face.

She’s blushing, she knows she is.

“He doesn’t love you the way you love him.”

Mako startles and gasps, she looks up and there’s Emma sitting perched on the couch next to Yuzuha, they both have a gentle smile on their faces as they watch their brother’s and their friends.

“I don’t know what you mean,” Mako replies to her old friend, and Emma just smiles back at her. Her honey-brown eyes are drawn back to her brother and friends as Baji declares a re-match. “Mikey-nii, he’s changed a lot since we were kids, and he's already in love with someone else.”

Mako narrows her eyes at Emma, trying to figure out if she’s lying or not. Mikey’s not in love, she would have noticed if he had someone or not. “He didn’t say anything about being in love or having someone.”

“He doesn’t have to,” Yuzuha injected quietly, still smiling at her. “He’s been in love for years, since middle school,” she chuckles quietly. “Mikey-Kun's just didn’t realize it until a couple of months ago.”

Mako turns her head back to look at Mikey; he’s playing Poker now with his friends, and the others in the room are placing bets on who’s going to win. The dark-haired man who won earlier excuses himself from beside Mikey and goes to exit the living room.

The man who looks more like a tiger than a human, with his golden eyes, calls out a question as to where he’s going.

“To take a leak.” Is his flippant response, causing laughter to break out around the circle. A few moments pass before Mikey climbs to his feet and does the same, flipping off the golden-eyed man when he coos at him. A pretty blonde with a black undercut whispers something to him before he exits, and Mikey’s mouth tightens slightly before he nods.

Mako turns back to Emma and Yuzuha, questions of the tip of her tongue and Emma just shakes her blonde head of hair and offers her another beer.
She’ll find out the truth, not right now though, with Emma walking over to kiss her boyfriend and whisper something into his ear. She sees him glace her way; there are too many eyes on her at the moment, she’ll bide her time. She’ll find out, one way or another.

 

Exiting the upstairs toilet, Takemichi is greeted with the sight of Mikey leaning against the opposite wall. He’s dressed in tight black jeans, and a black button-up, his sleeves are rolled up and he looks fucking hot as sin.

Flashing his commander a smile, Takemichi moves towards the stairs, but Mikey’s muscled arm blocks his way.

“You’re angry with me.” He says, all conversational like. Takemichi feels his heart stop.

“No,” he says, eyes trained on the floor, “Of course not.”

“Chifuyu says that you told him you were.”

“I lied,” Takemichi replies, forcing himself to make direct eye contact with Mikey.

Bravado is so fucking his middle name – sometimes –

“I lie all the time. It’s horrible, a bad habit really. I need help, can you recommend a therapist?”

“No, you didn’t lie,” Mikey says, completely used to Takemichi’s rambling. He leans closer and stares him dead in the eyes. “I can tell when something is wrong, and I know something is.”

Takemichi swallows hard and shuts his eyes for a moment; he wishes the world would open up and swallow him whole. He doesn’t want what he has with Mikey to ever go away. He loves him so fucking much, and he’s so out of his depth that for several beats he’s breathless.

He can smell Mikey’s cologne; he can feel the heat emanating from his large body and when he opens his eyes, he can see the worry in the depth of Mikey’s pitch-black orbs.

He whimpers softly in the back of his throat, and it’s hard to tell who closes the distance – maybe it’s both of them at the same time – but suddenly they’re kissing, and Mikey finally melts with relief at the familiar taste of Takemichi. He’s with him, in his arms, and he’s never been so happy – he puts all of that into the kiss as best he can, trying to communicate without words how important he is, how important this is.

Takemichi laughs when there is a break in the kiss so they could both answer the subtle ache of their lungs for air, the laugh sounds broken and hollow and Mikey furrows his brows in confusion.

“Takemitchy, please. Tell me what’s wrong.”

“What’s wrong?” Takemichi whimpers, “You shouldn’t be kissing me, if you’re in love with someone else, that’s what’s wrong.”

“Wait – what?” Mikey’s mind skids to a halt, his eyes searching Takemichi’s damp ocean-blue orbs for any signs of joking. “Who – what – oh!”

The conversations he previously had with the others suddenly makes sense to him now, why Mitsuya and Kazutora were suddenly very interested in his relationship with his and Emma’s childhood friend, Mako. Why Draken kept repeating that he’s never seen him so happy than when he’s with Takemitchy, and why everyone else was keeping both their eyes on Takemichi, even Chifuyu who always was protective of him, was glued to his side.

“No, Takemitchy, I would never want anyone else.” Mikey cupped Takemichi’s face in his hands. “Don’t you get it? You’re it for me.”

Tears leaked out of Takemichi’s eyes, and his lips tingled from the memory of that bruising kiss, and the spots where Mikey’s fingertips were digging into the notches of his spine only moments ago were like pinpoints of sensation, impossible to ignore. He sighed as though the entire world was lifted from his shoulders, and he went lax in Mikey’s embrace, his eyes gleamed haunted from the inside out as he spoke with a strained tone, “I thought that I’d lost you.”

Mikey pressed kisses to his forehead, and to his cheekbones, down his jaw to his lips and whispered a quiet 'never' against them.

Pulling Takemichi away from the wall, he took his hands in his and walked back towards the room Pah had given him. It was huge, with a king-size bed and an en-suite bathroom.

Takemichi hesitated at the door, he stood there, looking lost, helpless, and ready to crumble.

Mikey felt sadness fill him, how could this fucking glorious man think that he didn’t want him? He loved him, and if he didn’t believe that, then he would have to show him. Taking Takemichi hands in his again, he watches as Takemichi had an internal fight with himself, before stepping over the threshold and into Mikey’s room.

Sighing with relief, Mikey moved towards the door and closed it, turning the lock so no one would interrupt them. He turns to Takemichi who’s sprawled himself across his bed, those hypnotizing eyes closed and his chest rising and falling rhythmically, and as Mikey moves towards the bed, Takemichi sits up, moving to the edge to greet him.

It all seems like a dream – but Takemichi knows it’s not, not when Mikey’s hands gently caress his cheek and whispers, ‘I love you.'
Pressing the words into Takemichi’s mouth like he’s known this for years instead of a few months like this is a secret that the two of them have had for a lifetime. Mikey’s hands move along Takemichi’s clothed body, not removing clothes just caressing the shape of his hips over the jeans and the long slope of his spine through his t-shirt.

Takemichi moves his hands to run over the broad expanse of Mikey’s shoulders, and tugs at the fabric that’s covering them. Mikey moves back from where he’s leaning over Takemichi and tugs his shirt up and over his head, and when he looks back Takemichi has done the same thing, his pale skin beckoning Mikey’s fingers to touch it, to mark it.

Mikey’s hand moves along the flat planes of Takemichi’s stomach, rough and warm, the pads of his fingertips pushing into the sides of his hips, Takemichi gasps, his eyelids fluttering closed. And when he opens them again, Mikey is hovering over him, and Takemichi tilts his head to the side to let Mikey kiss his neck. His movements are hungry, scraping teeth and searching lips, and Takemichi lets out a sigh, a moan, and a whimper all mixed into one.

“I love you,” Mikey whispers again, and again, the vibrations travelling down the length of Takemichi’s spine. “I love you.”

“I want you to listen to me very closely; can you do that for me, baby?” Mikey enquires as he slowly removed their trousers, stopping short at the sight of Takemichi wearing very familiar boxers, his.

Takemichi whimpers as the cool air hits his overheated skin, but he nodded at Mikey, signalling that he was listening.

“Okay, here goes.” Mikey states, “I love you, and I want you to know that I don’t love you because you’re practically famous around here, I don’t love you because you’re insanely handsome, and men and women everywhere fall all over you.” Beneath him, he hears Takemichi chuff at the comment, “It’s true, I’m honestly worried that I’ll have to resort to chasing off your admirers with something distinctly sharp and pointy.” He says trying to lighten the mood.

His voice is even softer now. “I love you because, after everything that’s been done to you, you still smile so brightly, and you still love everyone so fucking much. Because of that, I love every scar you bear.” He says with a gentle kiss to his clothing covered scars. “Every memory of hard choices you have had to make to save Toman, to save Baji, Emma – me. I love the dark and terrible parts of you that you’ll never share with me.”

“I love the colour of your eyes, and I love the way they shine.” He continues as he stared into the ocean-blue eyes beneath him, they were brimming with tears, overflowing like a tsunami wave breaching the shore, and he leaned down to kiss the dampness from his cheeks. “I love your voice when you sing a little off-key when you think no one is listening, and when you talk. I love it even more when you call my name.”

His voice is heartbreakingly gentle, “I love everything about you. I love how focused you get, that sometimes you don’t notice anything else in the room, except for me. I love your smile. I love your laugh, no matter how childish you think it is. I even love your mad face, when your cute little nose scrunches up in anger. I love you Hanagaki Takemichi. Now, forever, always.”

Takemichi is openly crying now, tears leaking from his blue eyes as he stares up at his boyfriend. He’s speechless, but Mikey is apparently not finished making him cry yet, as he leans down to lap at the tears on his cheek, humming gently at the salty taste of them.

“You say my name like it’s your first and last word, you cherish it like it’s something sacred. You say my name like it’s the only name you ever want to say, and I love the way it rolls off your tongue, almost as if your tongue is caressing the syllables.” And through his tears, Takemichi groans a wreaked-out version of his name. His real name.

Manjiro.

“I love your hair,” he says as he runs a hand through the dark curls, “So soft and silky between my fingers.”
“I love your throat,” his lips moving to press kisses to his jugular, “The way it constricts when I make you gasp. And I love the way you moan beneath me.” As if commanded a moan rips its way out of Takemichi’s throat, strangled and filled with longing.

Mikey moves back to look down at him, his pupils dilated and his eyes looking almost feral. He gazes down at Takemichi until blue meets black and he drags one of his large hands down Takemichi’s stomach to his hips and grasps him through his underwear, Takemichi gives a startled cry and bucks up into his hand.

“I love the way it feels to be inside you, the way you tilt your hips just right so I can go even deeper. I love how you clench around me, holding me inside like you never want to let me go. I love how perfectly I fit inside you like you were made for me, and only me.”

 

~

 

Takemichi was breaking apart, and he loved it so much.

Never in his life would he have imagined Mikey to be saying such things, the words made his heart sing.
He trusted Mikey so much, he loved him so much.

This much – enough to let him do as he pleased with his body. He could have taken a knife to his heart, and Takemichi knew that he would probably just whine and ask for more.

There was very, very little that Takemichi could focus on. Everything had dialled down to mostly just feeling. Only Mikey. He was the only one Takemichi could ever trust like this. He was the only one that made everything quiet enough for him to think, and to let go like this.

Giving himself over to Mikey set him at ease, submitting to Mikey’s every word and action, and letting someone else be in charge of his body. The reality was that it terrified him more than it exhilarated him. He only trusted Mikey this much, only trusted Mikey to take him apart, piece by piece, and then rebuild him and put him back together.

If he was being truthful, then Takemichi supposed it didn’t dial down to just feeling. It dialled down to Mikey, Mikey, Mikey.

He gasped when Mikey moved closer to kiss the corner of his eyes, his temples and down to the tip of his nose. He dropped hotter, wetter kisses over his mouth and jaw, fingers gently tracing over his cheeks. He hadn’t stopped there, he had continued his little body worship game all down Takemichi’s body, mouthing along his neck and biting at his shoulders.

His fingers had skimmed down his sides, teasingly over his stomach. They never went quite low enough, but he was pliant and malleable under Mikey’s watchful gaze. He could feel it on him, even without seeing it.

“Takemitchy~” Mikey’s voice just barely calls him back to reality. He was shaking, “Are you okay?”
The softness in his tone, the gentleness that he always treated him with, was so very apparent, and Takemichi couldn’t help another shudder from running down his spine.

“Ye-yeah. I’m alright.” His voice was softer than he expected, it was more muted but held a slight floating quality to it.

For Mikey. Only for Mikey. Always only for Mikey.

“Okay,” Mikey’s hands were back; sliding up over his hips as he left increasingly wet kisses up his bare thighs.

Takemichi couldn’t help the little noises that escaped him, shuddering when Mikey noses along the crease of his hips, mouthing gently at his boxers. He was shushed with just the feeling of Mikey’s fingers drumming along the jut of his hipbone. He nodded, even though he couldn’t tell if Mikey could see it or not.

Mikey was taking his sweet time, though, and Takemichi felt like he wanted to scream. It was maddening, how close he was to being touched without actually being touched. There were wet kisses being placed along his hips and thighs. There was a map of marks along his inner thighs on both sides and along his stomach, marking him up with what he was sure were going to be dark purple and red bruises.

He knew Mikey hadn’t broken the skin though, he wouldn’t without Takemichi’s permission first.

Takemichi moaned when Mikey shifted his legs up, bending them at the knee and then moving to press them into his chest. He felt hands run up the underside of his thighs, and spread them a little more, the same heat curling low in his stomach spread throughout his body.

He's been hard and flushed in his boxers the entire time. During Mikey’s ministrations, he’s only gotten harder and harder, shaking, and shuddering to the point that Mikey had to stop and ask if he was alright.

“You’re being such a good boy for me,” Mikey cooed as he ran his hands down Takemichi’s toned stomach, his breath hitching in his throat as he stared at his boyfriend squirming impatiently beneath him on the bed.

Takemichi’s body trembled, and he couldn’t help the small whimper that leaves the back of his throat as Mikey’s large, calloused hands caress his smooth skin, running his fingers along his ribs, counting them gently as he passed and stroking along the curve of his waist, his touch always remaining feather-light and dizzying.

Mikey’s strong fingers ran tenderly down his waist, and over Takemichi’s hipbones and he smiled as Takemichi arched, whimpering into the touch. Takemichi felt his stomach leap against the touch, his toes curling and digging into the mattress as Mikey continues along his hip bones, before being interrupted by the black boxer-clad waist and Takemichi moans low in his throat as Mikey delicately massaged the tense muscles there with his fingertips.

He laughed quietly to himself as he felt his body heat up, desire rushing like liquid fire through his veins and the tingling of his hips where Mikey’s fingers were dancing over just seconds ago. Mikey always takes such good care of him, massaging him and kissing every inch of his skin.

His lips feel puffy and tender from where he’s been biting them, stopping himself from making loud and obscene noises, and he lets Mikey’s careful fingers have their way as they slowly pull down the black fabric and he pulls the older man in for a crushing kiss, cupping his cheek with his hand and raking his nails through silky blonde locks in an attempt to busy his trembling fingers and bitten lips with Mikey’s.

He gasps and throws his head back, breaking the kiss as Mikey slides his thumbs under the band at either side of his hips and begins to slowly slide them off but stopping halfway down, being sure to only touch him lightly, driving him to the brink before bringing him back.

Gasping and keening he moves to entangle his fingers with Mikey’s and presses Mikey’s palms flush against his slick skin, needing the contact more than the air he was greedily sucking into his lungs.

“Please – “ he whimpers against Mikey’s lips. His insides were curling and alight with arousal in a way that made him a whining mess against Mikey’s hands and lips, arching up from the bed and pushing his body against Mikey’s once again, surrounding himself in the older man’s warmth and the musky scent lingering on his skin.

Mikey chuckles lightly from above him and gives in and quickly removes the dark underwear from his lithe body. Takemichi groans out a breathily ‘Oh, God – ‘ grinding his hips against Mikey’s, desperately needing some form of friction and Mikey tuts at his actions.
“I thought I taught you better control than this.” He murmurs quietly in Takemichi’s ear and keeps both of his hands on his hips to keep the younger from bucking up. His dark eyes are fixed on Takemichi’s, and Takemichi feels himself fold, submitting to Mikey.

His body calming and stilling underneath his weight, and he closes his eyes breathing lungful’s of the man above him and Takemichi knew he wasn’t allowed to move. Mikey had given him an order not to, accompanied by a sharp look, and that had been that.

Takemichi spreads his legs and at the back of his mind he acknowledges that he must look utterly obscene, but he doesn’t care, not when Mikey hums a satisfying sound at the back of his throat. He reopens his eyes to see Mikey surveying his body, nodding approvingly. He feels himself grow warm with the unadulterated love in Mikey’s dark eyes.

“You’re such a good boy,” Mikey murmurs. “My good boy.”

“I’m yours,” Takemichi replies immediately without hesitation.

Mikey nods, a slow please smile curling at his lips. “You’re mine.” With that, Mikey spreads Takemichi’s legs apart a little further, and he didn’t know when, but Mikey had apparently procured a bottle of lube from somewhere – no doubt he had eagerly stocked up before coming home and popped the cap on it. He could hear the little squirt as Mikey squirted some into his palm. It made an obscenely wet sound as he rubbed it around his fingers, warming the liquid and lubing them up.

There was hardly a moment between Mikey lubing them up and then pressing two directly into him. Takemichi gasped, arching up off the bed and spreading his thighs wider and tipping his head back further. He hadn’t expected this.
He’d expected Mikey to continue his slow, teasing touches, but this – this was Mikey working with purpose now, pressing and twisting inside of him in all the ways he knew that drove Takemichi absolutely insane. He could already feel his orgasm building, his control teetering on the edge. His hands reached up and curled his fingers through Mikey’s long blonde locks, marvelling at the softness, wondering vaguely if Mikey would ever be inclined to tie him up.

Mikey’s fingers pressed deeper inside him, and he lost that train of thought, he was amazed that Mikey hadn’t gotten bored with the small, whining noises he was making, the breathless gasps for air.

Mikey’s mouth moved along his stomach, placing hot, wet kisses along the trail below his belly button and down towards his hips. The scratch and scrape of Mikey’s slight stubble of facial hair against his skin, sensitive as it was, was driving him closer to the edge and to the brink of madness. He whined, pressing up into Mikey’s mouth only just so, seeking permission to continue and Mikey chuckled darkly, pressing him back down into the mattress effortless, and with that Takemichi had his answer.

Takemichi lets out a moan, the sound low and drawn out as Mikey pressed into him just so, in that way Mikey knew would make Takemichi cum. And he would have too, if Mikey hadn’t immediately withdrawn all of his fingers, his tight grip on him preventing him from rolling his hips down onto him for that last bit of pressure that he needed.

He could feel himself at the edge, whining and writhing trying to find some stimulation to push him, just that tiniest bit over and into orgasm, but he couldn’t find it.

Mikey’s mouth wasn’t on his skin anymore; there were no fingers inside of him, no palms sliding over his sweaty skin.

There was only Mikey above him, looking down at him with his dark eyes and his own heartbeat in his ears.

“Calm down.” Was the first thing Mikey said when his heart started to slow its racing beat, Takemichi whimpered, falling, and sliding away from the edge almost as quickly as he’d gotten there.

Mikey’s voice was calm and reassuring, but the hint of command in it, had him holding back, holding still. Mikey’s hand came up to cup his cheek and turn his mouth into a soft kiss. It was all gentle motion and warm heat. Mikey knew how to make him cum so hard he blacked out, but he also knew how to keep him edged for so long that he would beg and sob, crying out for mercy that only Mikey himself could provide.

“Feeling better?” Mikey asked against his lips.

“Yeah – yes.” He replied and was rewarded with a hand, heavy and solidly anchoring him down, sliding down to rest on his stomach. He gasped, nearly choking on the sound as Mikey wrapped his fingers back around him. His breath was drawn out into a long, low moan.

Mikey’s wrist twisted at just the perfect angle to make him arch up. He nearly whined when Mikey’s other hand came up to push his hips back down.

“I want you to beg, Ta-ke-mitchy.~ I want you to beg to cum and I want you to beg me to fuck you.” Mikey removed his hands, and before Takemichi could whimper out a response, he felt the hard flats of Mikey’s palms move along his ribs, down his sides, over his hips.

“Please, Mikey.” He whined, spreading his legs and all but presenting himself. “Please let me cum, please take me apart.”

He could feel his face flushing, his cock leaking hard against his stomach. He was bringing himself even closer to cumming, just by talking about what he wanted. “Please.”

His voice was little more than a whisper by then, murmured into the air and the feeling of desperation palpable in the air. When he glanced up at Mikey, he saw the pleased look on his face.

The fingers were pressed back inside of him, both at once this time. Probing and slow, they were moving and stretching with purpose. Mikey mouthed his way up to his neck, pressing hard against the spot inside of him that made him see stars and whine so loud that he thought the others downstairs, might be able to hear them.

He’s almost there, when Mikey pulls out his fingers once again, then there’s a slick sound in his ears.

Mikey spreads Takemichi’s legs a little further, and Takemichi sighs happily as Mikey finally, finally pushes in.

This is what he’s been waiting for, this is what he wants. Needs. He wraps his legs around Mikey’s waist and arms around his shoulders, clinging.

So needy,” Mikey murmurs teasingly, but Takemichi can hear the affection in his tone. Mikey then begins to fuck into him hard, grunting and thrusting, and Takemichi is clinging and whimpering.

He feels so protected, so safe with Mikey. Mikey would never let anything hurt him. He was stupid to believe any differently.

“You’re so good, Takemitchy.” Mikey says breathlessly, “So good.”

Takemichi loves it when Mikey praises him like this, it feels like he can do anything when he does. He lifts a hand and catches the back of Mikey’s neck and pulls him into a kiss, it’s clumsy and messy, and he’s murmuring incoherent babble and Mikey just knows he’s close.

Mine,” Mikey moans, shoving in deep and gripping Takemichi’s hips tightly. Feeling Takemichi tighten obscenely around him, and then he’s tumbling over the edge.
Takemichi moans when he feels Mikey’s release painting his insides and his own orgasm races through him, shooting up his spine as he arches his body into Mikey’s.

Yours,” Takemichi sobs, “Yours, yours, yours. I love you, so much.”

Mikey marvels at the sight beneath him, pale skin flushed and Takemichi’s ocean-blue eyes shining brightly, the sun pouring in from the window illuminating his body, Takemichi’s so fucking beautiful, and he tells him so.

“You’re so fucking beautiful,” he whispers, “You’re so beautiful and you’re mine.” He leans down to kiss those red bitten lips and the kiss is hot and deep and wet, and Mikey bites his lips until they sting and burn. "I love you."

They spend another hour, worshipping each other with gentle caresses and whispered declarations of affection, before getting dressed, stopping every few minutes to kiss the other. Mikey helps him in getting redressed, running his fingers through his curly hair to tame it back into place. Takemichi reaches up and tangles their fingers together, placing a kiss on both of Mikey’s palms.

Together they make their way back downstairs.

 

~

 

“Have you seen Mikey-Kun?” Mako enquires to the tall man with a peach-coloured afro whose name she still didn’t know.

“Uh, no. I haven’t seen him.” Nahoya replied, glancing around the room looking for his commander. “Have you checked outside? Maybe he’s swimming with Draken and Takemitchy?” Their commander did like to show off in front of Takemichi, a lot.

The other’s around him nod in agreement, laughing about that one-time years ago when Mikey had stretched and flexed his impressive physique in front of a blissfully ignorant Takemichi in his swimming trunks. Or the time when he pretended to drown if only to get Takemichi to perform CPR on him.

Their commander was a little bit love dumb when it came to their youngest captain.

“No, he’s not there, I just checked.” Mako huffed getting annoyed, she knew some of the people here, but she only came to spend time with Mikey, and now he’s gone and ditched her.

“I’ll check upstairs then.”

Walking towards the door, it open in front of her and in walks the man she was looking for. “Mikey-Kun,” she gasps, her eyes widening at his content, borderline sated expression. Behind him, is the man who won the game of Poker earlier, and her eyes travel down to their entangled fingers.

Oh!” she says, stretching out the syllable as her mind finally connects the dots from what his sister and friends had said earlier to what she was now seeing right in front of her very eyes.

-fin-