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Stay through the Winter

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Early snowflakes reminded him that sometimes, the weather was just odd. Well, it wasn't that bad because they actually were in the mountains right now, but it was still weird because of the fact that it was September. This stretch of four days was one of their breaks, just so both of them didn't wear themselves out.

As crazy as his stamina was, Yuuri knew that he didn't want to try and skate with a cold, or worse. That would be too cruel to his body and to his mind.

Yawning some, he tried to relax more into the seats of the train that they were in, but his mind continued to wander. It was like his mind wanted to continue to ramble on, and god did he want to turn it off. Why wasn't it easier to clear his mind?

He knew that if he actually did clear his mind, he would feel a lot better.

“Yuu~ri~!” Jumping and scrambling a bit when he felt arms wrap around his shoulders, he sputtered a bit as he realized that Victor had pulled him close enough that if he wasn't sitting down, he honestly could have been in his lap.

Just what—they were in public!

It wasn't as bad as being in a mall or anything but...

Blinking a few times in shock when he felt something flick his forehead, he whined some.

“What was that for?”

Victor grinned, looking quite angelic for the evil thing that he just did. It would have been worse if he was half asleep, but it still did kind of hurt. “You were ignoring me of course!” He replied, chuckling when he saw the look on his student's face. Yuri almost covered his eyes with a hand, because yes he knew that he had been doing so. Not intentionally of course, but he could feel Victor prodding at his side.

It was the fact that his mind didn't want to stop whirling around in several tangents that he hadn't responded right away to Victor's questions. It was hard to think sometimes when his mind was going several different directions at the same time.

That was something that even Victor understood.

Yuuri smiled apologetically, rubbing at his forehead.

“Sorry, my mind doesn't want to shut off right now.” He blinked a couple of times and almost pouted. Almost. “Did you have to flick my forehead that hard though?” Yuuri didn't mean to be whining about it, but it did surprise him more than anything. Hell, he almost admitted that he'd prefer another way to get his attention, but he knew that if he had said that aloud, Victor would take that idea and run with it.

Which could be interesting, or very, very bad for his heart.

He was hoping that if he ever did say that, Victor wouldn't give him a mini heart attack.

Victor hummed in agreement. “Even better actually. You do need to rest some, and that's why I booked us that four day stay in the mountains!” He was sad that Makkachin couldn't ride on the train with them, and he would miss his beloved dog dearly, but he was glad that he did get to spend some time with his student as well. It was nice being able to have some time to hang out with Yuuri, even more so because he was becoming more comfortable in his presence.

That felt like a victory on his part. A big victory, because he really did see the gem underneath all of the anxiety and awkwardness. Now that he knew Yuuri better, he saw that as part of his charm. He could be painfully awkward, but it was endearing. His smiles—the ones that just lit him up from the inside out and made him practically sparkle were things that he never tired of seeing. Victor knew that he would continue to try and make Yuuri smile, just because it made him smile in return.

He was still tossing the idea around that they could skate together some while they were on this break, just to relax.

Just thinking about it took his breath away. Yuuri, when he was on ice and doing something that he loved was breathtaking. It would take his breath away even more if he was beside him.

It would be something new too, because of the fact that he had never skated with anyone before. That was going to be a new thing that they both would share. Hopefully, if he had his way, they would keep it that way.

Was it a bad thing that he was more than elated that he got to spend four days alone with Yuuri? He wasn't going to complain one bit, and honestly if he had to admit it, he'd enjoy every minute of it. It did help that the mountains had received some snow recently, and even with the bit of homesickness he had, the cold and snow would do him wonders. Yuuri had confided in him that winter was his favourite season as well, so it was like a treat to the both of them that they'd be able to relax in the splendor around them.

Once they had crested several of the hills that eventually would rise into the mountains themselves, Yuuri gasped in awe as he realized that it had indeed been snowing. “Look at the snow!” he gasped out, letting himself forget that he had been thinking about so many different things all at once, things that honestly hadn't mattered as much as this did right now.

He was itching to just jump into the snow, wanting to just make a snow angel at first. There were several things that he wanted to do, and relaxing with a cup of hot chocolate was right up there on the top of his list besides playing in the snow.

Oh, there were so many things they could do when they finally were there at the mountain resort!

Victor couldn't help but to smile as he saw just how quickly Yuuri had caught sight of the white snow in the corner of his eye out of the window, and he had practically plastered himself to the window as he took in the sight of everything covered in snow.

It was a rather cute sight.

Completely unable to stop the laugh that came from him, he could feel himself being extremely pleased at the fact that he had already made the younger man so happy. He'd have to chide him some to take it easy, but this was going to definitely be a good way to get him to relax. He didn't want Yuuri to be skipping sleep or being too wound up to even function properly, so this was the first thing that came to mind. Now that he had already seen his reaction to the snow, he knew that he would revisit this idea several times.

After all, he did deserve to unwind as well. It just took him and his roundabout ways to figure out one of the perfect ways to get Yuuri to actually do that.

“Victor look! I just saw a fox rolling around in the snow!”

God, why did Yuuri have to be so damned cute?

Glad for once that he kept his phone with him, he took a picture of Yuuri looking out the window with an excited smile, the sun playing off of his mocha coloured eyes very well. In fact, now that he took a look at the picture, it looked like they sparkled.

He set that as his lock screen picture and stashed his phone away before he was found out.

Victor didn't want to make Yuuri sulk—though it would be completely adorable.

No, he wanted him to have fun and if that meant reigning in on teasing his adorable little student, he would.

Ah, that reminded him. He knew that Yuuri liked him, more than he would admit—and it was flattering as hell. He would actually tell him when he was being annoying, and even if he was having one of those down days, he would help him by just being there. Honestly, he hadn't thought that he would have ever brought more out of coming to Japan beside his idea to coach Yuuri, but Yuuri—wonderfully awkward yet adorable Yuuri, had brought out more in him that he thought he had buried ages ago.

Seeing the eager look on Yuuri's face as he took in all of the snow around them as they moved further in the mountains had him humming in delight. They were actually closer to Mount Fuji than anything right now, and even though they had to leave Yu-topia, the Katsukis cheered them on and shooed them both off to have a fun stay.

With every day that passed, he was more and more grateful that he had met Yuuri, and by extension, his family and friends. They had made him feel more at home than he did in Russia of all places at times. That, was something he was forever thankful for.

Brought out of his thoughts by Yuuri's laughter, he almost sneezed as he felt something brush against his nose.

“Ah!” He cried out, crinkling his nose as he tried not to sneeze. Yuuri had plucked a feather out of the down pillow that he had been using to cushion his back against the seat, and was now using it to rub against his nose.

The scoundrel!

He couldn't just go and let Yuuri get away with it, that was for sure!

Smirking, he leaned over and wrapped both arms around him, crushing Yuuri into a tight hug. “You're lucky I can't do what I really want to do right now Yuuri~ You'd find out just how much I love to get payback.”

Yuuri froze in Victor's grasp, clearly not expecting him to hug him like that. Though he was getting even more used to being in contact with Victor, and with how they were both throwing around the idea of actually being together more seriously—they hadn't actually flat out said it.

He was hoping that would come soon enough. Honestly, for once, he wasn't scared to admit that he had fallen for Victor. What he was scared of was that maybe Victor didn't feel as strongly as he did for him, as Yuuri did for Victor.

That was the real reason that he had kept quiet about this, but when anyone else In his position would have spilled their thoughts already.

Shivering some, he chuckled nervously, trying to get more air in his lungs.

“I-is that so?” He began, trying his best to act innocent. He had known what he was doing after he saw Victor staring off into space, a bit of a goofy grin on his face.

Seems like he wasn't the only one that had been lost in thought.

“Yuu-ri~ Don't be mean to your coach!” He squirmed some when he felt Victor poke his side, trying not to burst out into laughter. That was going to be hard, because he was pretty ticklish.

“Victor, stop!” He whimpered, trying his damndest not to make a scene.

If Victor wanted to torment him by tickling him, at least let them not be in a crowded train. That would at least give him more time to run away at least.

Feeling more pokes along his sides and the feeling of warm hands pressing against his stomach he squirmed and giggled. “S-stooop!” He cried out, amazingly able to keep his voice as low as he could. A few guffaws came from him, and Victor finally relented when he trailed his fingertips against his hip.

“Fine, fine. You'll get the rest when we're actually there. Okay, Yuuri?”

With how easily Victor said that, he was both looking forward to and dreading what he had in mind. Would his sanity still be in tact?

Still giggling a little as he calmed down, he noticed that Victor was in a really good mood. Of course the Russian was usually all smiles and found fun in a lot of things, but Yuuri could tell that he was relaxed already, and he seemed like he was almost glad that they weren't surrounded by too many people.

“You've needed this too, haven't you?” He found himself saying, not really realizing that he had said that aloud. Victor of course had been tense while they had been working on what he would do for his short program and his free skate, and though he had been dealing with anxiety attacks at times, he still noticed that he wasn't the only one that had to deal with this. Victor didn't get the anxiety attacks that he did, so it was a bit harder to see how tense he was at times, but now that he had been around him more, he could tell that his movements got stiffer. His smiles would be more fake when he was feeling particularly tense, and his eyes tended to be more cold.

It was refreshing seeing Victor return to the one that he had grown to know again.

“Yuuri?”

Hearing Victor call his name, he blinked a couple times and then felt himself grow a bit hot. Ah, he did say that aloud, didn't he?

The curiosity in Victor's gaze told him everything.

Sighing, he mentally chided himself for speaking without thinking, but he nodded lightly. “I've noticed that you've been tense too. You try to hide it, but with how you're always around now...I can see it. It's easier for me because we've been living together.”

Yuuri's words were enough to quiet Victor some, and as Yuuri studied the look on his companion's face, he realized that it was thoughtful, more introspective. He knew that Victor had set up this trip for him to mainly unwind, and that he did have work in mind for himself to do—not nearly as much as he would have usually, but enough—and that just didn't sit too well with him. If Victor wanted him to relax, he was going to have to do so too.

“You never fail to surprise me.” Victor finally said, his voice lower and barely shielding the awe that was now in his eyes. He felt flattered, knowing that Victor appreciated the fact that he realized that he was wound up too, and the feeling of a warm hand squeezing his own had him looking down at their now hidden yet joined hands and smiled. He was glad that he was able to help, even if it was in a little way like this.

“Most forget that I'm actually a person, and instead they just wait for me to continue to be seen as untouchable.” Victor continued, sounding rather disappointed at the whole situation. Yuuri could feel his heart clench. He had idolized Victor when he was younger—he still did in a way, but he knew how damn hard he worked to get to where he was. Every skater did, considering the work they went through to get better at what they loved to do. So hearing that so many people thought that, and actually acted like Victor couldn't feel stress or even anger—that had him gritting his teeth.

“That doesn't make any sense! You're a five time grand prix medalist, but at the same time you're human. You feel emotion, you can get annoyed and tired, and you can just as easily get frustrated. Why doesn't that make any sense to anyone that hasn't been on the rink before?” His chest heaved a bit as he got this out in a rush of emotion, practically unable to stop or even breathe. Seeing the way that Victor carried himself after they were out from under the camera's eye after events had him reeling all over again—he wanted to berate everyone for forgetting that figure skaters were human too.

Victor felt a rush of fondness come over him, and he was unable not to smile—the urge to just wrap his arms around Yuuri and nuzzle against his face was paramount in his thoughts. Though he wanted to do it, he couldn't do that right now. Bumping their legs together and squeezing Yuuri's hand in thanks however, was something he could do right now.

He'd glomp him later. Because he would do that and more with how much Yuuri worried for him. It just made him feel more human, like he mattered more than just his talent.

Yuuri was so important to him, and this time he was going to be able to show it more.

“Thank you, Yuuri. You don't know how much that means to me, hearing you say that.” He had to take a bit to reply, because he had wanted to reply in Russian as the feelings he was going through were able to be understood, because at that moment his understanding of English had failed him.

This overwhelming feeling of comfort, of being happy to the point where he didn't care who knew he was happy to be around Yuuri was hard to hide. He did hide a lot of what Yuuri made him feel, he was used to having his own form of mask that he put on for the world, after all. It wasn't hard for Yuuri to stay his adorably shy self to the media, and he would open up some when they were alone.

The mere thought of it thrilled him. Yuuri liked being around him.

Yuuri smiled some and squeezed Victor's hand back.

“It's not a problem, Victor. Someone had to say it. I, had to say it.” It's what he believed after all. Who couldn't see the brilliant person Victor was? Sure, you could be blinded by his smiles and laughter, but when you really took a good look at him, even with his faults, Victor was caring and a genuinely great person.

Victor made a small, pleased sound and leaned against him just a bit.

“You're nice and warm, Yuuri.” He murmured, an adoring smile tilting his lips upwards.

As much as he wanted to blush and stutter, he could only nod and feel his heart beat faster. “Yeah, it helps that you bought me this coat.”

That made Victor feel even more pleased. Yuuri had been hesitant for him to even buy him anything, but once he figured out that the coat he had wasn't going to work in even more colder climates, he had acquiesced to his demand that he needed to get a warmer coat.

It was one that he would have chosen for himself, actually. Though once he saw that it came in a deep sapphire blue, he knew that it was going to be uniquely Yuuri's.

He did have a good eye for fashion, after all.

“Good. I like you wearing it more.”

It was different, now that Yuuri thought about it. Though it was his coat, Victor liked to wear it himself. When he did and actually did give it back, Yuuri found himself wearing it even more because it smelled like Victor.

It had him warm all over knowing that Victor had worn the same coat, and he could still smell that bit of spice that was attached to the skater's cologne that just had him sighing in comfort. It really did suit him, and he knew that he was going to attribute the scent to him.

He laughed at himself mentally. He knew that he was head over heels for Victor, and that from what he could tell, Victor felt the same.

Maybe he wasn't the only one that was scared that things could change if they actually voiced what they were feeling?

That was comforting at least. Because knowing that he wasn't the only one dealing with nerves was easier on the mind, and he knew that he would be able to speak up easier. Knowing that they would be at a resort for four days did help out quite a bit too—If he could actually muster up the courage, he had the perfect way to spring that question on Victor.

Hopefully he wouldn't chicken out.

He needed to do this, damn it!

Closing his eyes some, he wanted to drift for a while. It would be a little bit longer before they reached their destination, and after being on the train for a few hours, he knew that they'd both love to get out and stretch their legs.

Victor chuckled some and stroked his thumb over Yuuri's hand. He marveled over the fact that he was so relaxed, and that he could actually do this now.

There were a lot of things that he could do now, that he hadn't been able to months ago.

Whatever god there was up there, he gave them all of the thanks.

It just felt like he was home, being by Yuuri's side like this. It didn't matter where they were, but being around Yuuri in Hatsetsu, it just made everything feel like home.

He wanted to take Yuuri to meet his parents. He needed to meet his mother, and god he'd understand why he loved Yuuri's mother so much. They were definitely kindred souls, and that just made his stay at Yu-topia so much easier.

“I want to take you to meet my mother when we get some time.” He finally said, his accent a bit thick as several emotions coursed through him. He wanted to do so much, and the snow that was around him was reminding him of so many more things that would just be perfect.

Yuuri blinked a couple of times, his mind took a few seconds to register what Victor had said before he turned bright red. While he knew that it wasn't too far of a stretch because they'd be in Russia eventually, but to say that out of the blue like that with other people that could hear was a bit embarrassing.

Yet it was something that he had wondered about. Victor had told him a bit about his mother, and he had wondered if he'd like her as much as he did his own mother.

Yuuri realized that he had been lost in thought and giggled some, nodding. “I can get all of the embarrassing stories from her!” he finally said, smiling in amusement. Victor had heard several of the things that had happened to him through Mari, his mother, and Minako, but he would love to hear things that no one knew about Victor.

Now that...wasn't what he had been expecting. Though he was more than amused and surprised that he had gone that route. It was a bit of their own thing, to surprise each other—he should have expected that at least, but for this he hadn't expected it.

“Really? Here I would have thought you would be scared at the thought of meeting her.” He replied, chuckling at the thought. His mother would simply grab Yuuri and pull him into the biggest hug she could. That's just how she was.

Yuuri looked up and smiled.

“Why would I be? You've told me about her some, and she seems like a wonderful person. She has to be with how much she supports you.” He said honestly, and Victor felt himself falling for Yuuri all over again. How could he be this damned cute?! He wasn't sure, and for the love of him, he was going to ask Yuuri to be his boyfriend.

The thought of him being with anyone else was wrong to the point of being actually painful.

Victor knew that he should at least tell Yuuri how he felt, and while he was still afraid that Yuuri would shy away from the idea of them being together, he at least had the idea that Yuuri liked him back.

“Victor?”

Shaken from his thoughts by Yuuri calling his name, he smiled back.

“Sorry about that...was lost in thought.”

Yuuri found that adorable. He had a bit of a scrunched up nose and he reached out, poking the tip of it.

“Hopefully nothing too big. We're almost there. I want to play in the snow.” He uttered the last part of his response as a demand, because he knew that he would eventually drag Victor outside if he didn't come willingly. Though because Victor loved snow as much as he did, he knew that it wouldn't be too hard to get him to come outside.

That got a rather amused laugh from Victor. Oh, he knew the hard way that Yuuri loved winter and even more so the snow, so hearing him say that had him beside himself in amusement. “Of course, of course. I know that you'd do something evil like pack my pillowcase full of snow if you didn't.”

Yuuri's eyes sparkled at the idea.

“Oh good idea! I was wondering what I could do if you woke me up early...” He trailed off, a bit of a smile on his face.

He was a bit evil when he was tired, but knowing him he wouldn't do anything too mean. Though if he was tired enough...well, that just depended upon his mood.

Snow was a way to wake someone up, and if he was going to be up early, he'd make damned sure that Victor was wide awake too.

Tilting his head some, Yuuri snickered a bit as he saw the look on Victor's face. He actually looked quite afraid at the idea. Maybe Yuri had done that to him before? That would definitely be interesting to hear about. “Don't worry...I won't be that mean...yet.” He commented with a sunny smile. He wasn't kidding, and though he did have a few ideas that he wanted to use with snow, he wasn't going to go and spill them all.

Was Victor pouting? Taking another look at him, Yuuri laughed. He was! It was actually pretty cute—shit, was he blushing now?

Feeling Victor poke at his cheek he could feel himself heating up a bit more.

“Yuuri~ are you going to pass out on me?”

Damn it Victor! He knew exactly what he was doing to him! He knew that he was unable not to be a bit overwhelmed by him, and damn it all to hell if he wasn't attracted as fuck to him too.

Victor hummed lightly and this time gave into his urge to nuzzle his face against Yuuri's. “Don't pass out just yet Yuuri, I still have more to show you~” Yuuri was silent, trying to calm down his beating heart. That was hard enough, so when the train finally came to a stop, he sighed in relief.

When his wits came back to him, he grinned ear to ear.

“Victor, come on! We can finally get in the snow!” Yuuri spoke, his eyes wide with delight at the idea. He was glad that Victor had the foresight to send their bags before them, because he would have forgotten as soon as they stopped.

If he hadn't realized that he had left his gloves in his bag, he would have forgot.

Victor chuckled and nodded, still holding on to Yuuri's hand. “Alright, we should be off in a couple of minutes if we move with the crowd.”

Yuuri smiled and squeezed Victor's hand, not caring when he shoved their conjoined hands into his coat pocket. It felt nice, having Victor's hand against his own as they walked.

Was he glad that Victor chose the longer way around instead of the shinkansen? Oh hell yes. That meant less people to stare, and less of a chance that he'd have a meltdown.

He didn't want to have one, and he was even more glad that they were now surrounded by snow~!

As much as Yuuri wanted to pay attention to what was going on around them, he let Victor lead them to the resort, and once they were getting close enough to the path leading to the front door, he stopped.

“Yuuri?” Victor asked, wondering why he stopped.

Yuuri knew that if he didn't say anything now, he probably would choke up again later. God, he knew that he had been waiting to say this, that he wanted to hear Victor's answer.

His heart was beating quite fast, and he smiled some as he felt Victor squeeze his hand some in worry.

“Victor....”

Baby blue eyes stared at him in worry. “Yuuri, you're not coming down with a cold, are you? You're kind of red.” Victor let go of Yuuri's hand, only to lift them up to Yuuri's flushed face, brushing the backs of his hands against his cheeks.

“You're a little warm....”

Yuuri leaned into Victor's touch, sighing some. “I don't think so...but I do want to ask you something.” He murmured, not wanting to pull away from him just yet.

That sparked his curiosity, and Victor hummed in interest. “What is it?”

Yuuri was so damned glad that they were alone for the time being.

He was also glad that he realized that he wasn't the only one that had feelings for the other.

Hopefully Victor's answer would be favourable, because he wasn't sure what he'd do if it wasn't.

“Victor...will you continue to stay by me...and be my boyfriend?” How he managed to get that out and not pass out he wasn't sure, but it was practically a miracle for him to do so. He held his breath some, waiting for the man he was head over heels for to answer.

The Russian skater looked at Yuuri with slight surprise. Now he had thought that he would have said this first, but for Yuuri to? It was a welcome surprise, and he swooped down, picking Yuuri up in a tight hug. Twirling him around, he was greeted with Yuuri's laughter and comments about him going to be dizzy if he kept that up, he grinned ear to ear.

“Of course~! I was hoping to say that first you know.” He set Yuuri back down on his feet, taking in the sight of the Japanese man's face flushed from both the winter cold, as well as the current situation. If anything, it was something that he was going to remember forever.

Yuuri let out another breath, and giggled.

“Oh god, I thought I was going to pass out after I said that.”

Yuuri's comment had Victor laughing. “I can't have that, can I? If that happens, who else am I going to tease?”

Yuuri gasped and scowled at the idea. “Oh, so you just like to tease me?”

Victor smiled and kissed his forehead. “That's not the only thing I do like about you Yuuri, but it is one of the things that I do love to do.”

Yuuri felt vindicated when a bit of snow that had been on a branch above them fell on Victor's head. He was so amused that he snorted and started laughing.

“I think the snow's on my side!”

Once Victor let go of Yuuri to brush all of the snow off of his head and shoulders, he gave his now boyfriend a bit of a glower.

“We'll see what side it's on once you get some snow down your shirt, won't we?”

That was enough to make Yuuri gasp and sprint off, knowing full well that if Victor caught him, he would do just that.