Javi let his bag fall on the floor, beside the bench, where he sat slumped, yawning loudly while stretching his arms, making his bones crack and complain. It was too early, having to wake up at five in the morning should be banned. Javier, strangely, had arrived earlier than Yuzuru, who tended to be there nearly half an hour before his appointed time, already skating around the rink and doing simple jumps when Javi started his stretches. He lazily changed his clothes to more comfortable ones, and walked to the gym.
Nearly one month had already passed since he had broken up with Miki. It seemed strange, after so much time with her. He missed Himawari, but the relationship had been withering for a few months already. They barely saw each other, or even called each other. They were still in different parts of their lives: Miki was ready to settle down with her daughter and have a quiet life, meanwhile Javi felt he was still too young to take care of a child, a child that wasn’t even his, or settle down in one place. He still had a few more years in him to skate and travel around. And then… And then there was Yuzuru. He knew he felt something for the boy when he started his relationship with Miki. Hell, he even knew it when he was going our with Cortney. However, Yuzuru had always said he was straight in interviews, and although they touched each other a lot and were closer than anyone else, he hadn’t dared to approach him in a romantic way. That did not mean he hadn’t loved Miki or Cortney, he had loved them a lot. But he Yuzuru was always there, and in the end, both girls had noticed it.
Miki had ended up growing quite jealous of the Japanese boy. Miki saw Yuzuru a lot due to living in the same country and ending up in the same interviews, and Javi had always tried to spend time with him too when he was in Japan. Sometimes too much time, according to Miki. Yuzuru had never been nothing but polite to his Senpai, but Javi was sure that he could feel the animosity from her. And it was entirely Javier’s fault, Yuzu had done nothing to spite her; just exist and be adorable.
Then, as if fates had called him, the Japanese boy entered the gym with his tight clothes and greeted Javi with a sleepy smile, his eyes almost disappearing. Javi’s heart leaped in his chest as he greeted back, his smile growing. Yuzuru left his Pooh, his towel and his water bottle on the floor along with his skates and then sat down on the floor in front of Javi, starting his stretches too.
“Hey, earlier than you today eh!”
“Only because I lost pants and have to search.” Argued Yuzuru, making a face.
“Sure, Mr. Hanyu, what a lousy excuse.”
They continued their friendly banter until both of them had stretched enough and then they went to the ice rink, seating down to tie their skates up. Yuzuru was quite fast tying them, while Javi took his time and did it parsimoniously, making sure they were tight everywhere they needed to be. Yuzuru stood up before him and grabbed his Pooh, hugging it to his chest while staring at Javi, his dark eyes piercing him.
“What?” The Spaniard asked, with a playful smile, when he finished tying up his skates. Yuzuru then took his eyes off Javi before directing them to the floor.
“Kanako tell me you and Miki break up.” Yuzuru murmured, as if afraid Javi was going to hear his words. But the Spaniard did, and he only smiled sadly and nodded, retrieving his things to put them near the ice.
“We did break up. About a month ago.”
“A month??” Yuzuru shrieked. “You not tell me! Why?”
“You were still in competition season, I didn’t want to worry you! And we also didn’t want to make any drama out of it. We’re still friendly with each other, it’s not like we hate each other’s guts now.”
“But I am your friend! I console you!”
Javier sighed, blushing at the double meaning those words held for him.
“It’s okay, really, Yuzu. I am sad, I was, but I’m okay now. I do not cry all day, you see? It was for the best. Long distance wasn’t easy and we barely saw each other so it just died. We weren’t meant to be.”
“Oh…” Said Yuzu only, his expression still of deep worry, while looking at Javier suspiciously, as if trying to decipher if the older one was telling the truth. Javier ruffled the younger one’s hair, earning an annoyed whine while Yuzuru slapped his hand away and they both made their way onto the ice. They were the first ones to arrive, but Brian would be there shortly along with Tracy, but then, they had the ice to themselves and they thrived in skating at full speed around the rink, trying simple jumps or fast spins.
Yuzuru attempted a triple axel but he under-rotated it and fell on his butt, sliding a few meters on the ice. Javier watched as Yuzuru didn’t get up, instead stayed seated on the ice, dusting off his pants meticulously. Javier approached him and crouched down, getting his face on the same level al Yuzuru’s. The Japanese boy looked strangely serious and he did not met his friend’s eyes with his usual mirth.
“What is wrong? Is something bothering you?” Javier asked, seating down beside Yuzuru, who still refused to look at him.
“No.” Lied Yuzu, his nose scrunching like a bunny.
“Aw come on, you’re the worst liar ever.”
“I never lie!” The Japanese boy argued, throwing a half-hearted punch at the Spaniard’s chest. Javier grabbed his wrist and forced Yuzuru to look at him. However, the Japanese boy defiantly refused to meet his eyes and struggled against Javier’s hold, the both of them starting to play fight on the ice. Their laughs echoed on the rink walls. The sun was just rising, casting an eerie glow inside the spacious room. They hadn’t bothered to switch on the lights, and Brian would probably scold them for it after, but at that moment, Yuzuru looked soft and precious under the dawn light and Javier couldn’t care about anything but him. He wanted to tell him, he wanted to tell him badly, but Japan wasn’t known for his homosexuality acceptance, and he didn’t know where Yuzuru stood. He didn’t want to risk their friendship.
“Please tell me. I am worried when you are worried.”
“Well, I worry if Javi worry too. That is… That is why I become angry. Because Javi don't tell me everything but I want help him.” Yuzuru mumbled, his accent even more thicker than usual, so thick that Javi had to wait a few seconds to process everything.
“Y-You are upset because I didn’t tell you I had broken up with Miki?” Javi snorted. Yuzuru looked offended and his brows scrunched, his glare looking mighty even though Javi knew he wasn’t capable of hurting anyone.
“Yes! Because I-I am… You are my best friend, so, I want help. I thought I am Javi’s best friend too” Yuzuru stood up from the ice with a stomp, his eyes shining with unshed tears, his blades sending ice flying towards Javier.
“Hey, hey. Come on, Yuzu, I didn’t… I didn’t mean it to sound like that. I wasn’t making fun of you!” Javi stood up quickly and skated behind Yuzuru, who had started skating angry laps around the rink until he threw himself in a triple Axel that he over-rotated due to the force he was carrying and landed on his side, so hard that Javi swore that he even heard some bones crack. The Spaniard rushed instantly to Yuzuru’s side, but the Japanese had already stood up, albeit wincing, when he reached him.
“Why did you do that! God, let me see, that must have hurt. Dios, Yuzuru, que susto me has dado!*”
“Not hurt.” Yuzuru croaked, feeling frustrated both at Javi and at himself. Javi, however, didn’t let Yuzu slide away, and he held him in place, grabbing his arms softly and, with care, he pushed up Yuzuru’s shirt, gazing at the side he had fallen on. A nasty bruise was going to form there, but aside that, everything seemed to be okay, and although it did hurt when Javier touched it, as Yuzu’s scowl and wince made it clear, it didn’t seem to be very bad.
“Hey, come on. Please, hear me out.” Javier pleaded, still holding Yuzuru so the boy wouldn’t go away, because he sure had the intention to. “I… I didn’t tell you because we didn’t tell anyone. We decided to wait until things calmed down after the competition season to tell our friends, so you know, the media wouldn’t bother anyone trying to find out anything. You are my best friend, Yuzu, don’t ever doubt that. But you have to believe me, I’m okay. It was for the best. Sure, it did hurt, because you know, we did spend a lot of time together but… It was for the best.”
Yuzuru had calmed down and was listening to Javi, and when the Spaniard ended his speech, the Japanese nodded and looked back at Javi. The Spaniard smiled at him and Yuzuru smiled back at him, his cute small smile that melted Javier’s heart. Javi pinched Yuzuru’s nose like he was a little kid, and they both laughed, pushing against each other to be free from each other’s grasp.
The sun was higher, and the rink was almost out of the darkness, however, nobody had yet appeared, yet, Javi and Yuzuru continued some exercises on the ice, helping each other improve their jumps, and Javi making sure Yuzuru didn’t attempt a Quad Axel without Brian’s supervision. He would be damned if he let the Japanese get more hurt today, either physically or emotionally.
An hour had passed already, and still not trace of Brian or Tracy, or even the other Javier, who tended to join Yuzu and Javi during trainings. They decided to take a break and eat something. Yuzuru was panting harshly, his asthma making itself present after his hard training.
After eating their respective breakfasts, they just sat down against the wall, staring at the silent and still ice. Yuzuru, still trying to regain his normal breath, rested his head against Javier’s shoulder, so Javi took the opportunity to rest his on Yuzuru’s hair. They stayed like that during various minutes, neither of them saying anything, yet feeling completely comfortable in their silence. That is, until Yuzuru left his water bottle, that he had been holding between his hands, on the floor and proceeded to sneakily take Javier’s hand with one of his and lace their fingers together, like it was the most natural thing to do. And it felt natural. It felt as natural as breathing, but as exhilarating as landing a perfect quad.
Javier’s heart skipped a bit entirely and then started thumping hard against his chest, feeling the heat rise to his face. With a small smile, he shifted so his nose was resting on Yuzuru’s hair. They were both quite sweaty and in need of a shower, but Yuzu still smelled like Yuzu, like Javier’s favourite hugs, like training days in Toronto, like nights spent playing video games instead of following their sleeping schedule. He smelt like home.
Yuzuru moved his head a bit, so Javi detached his nose from his hair and stared at him. Yuzuru had titled his head enough to look at Javier yer still be lying on his shoulder. It was a weird neck angle, but Javier had the chance to look directly into the Japanese deep dark eyes, who kept moving from one place to another until he closed them and then Javi realised that Yuzuru was going to kiss him, so when he felt Yuzu’s breath on his lips, he closed his eyes and let himself enjoy what he had been waiting for so long.
They didn’t move at first, their lips barely touching, until Yuzuru moved his head, their lips detaching for a moment before Yuzu kissed him again, this time moving his lips against the Spaniard’s, his neck at a normal angle so they both would be comfortable. Javi inhaled sharply with his nose, his free hand travelled to Yuzuru’s neck, and he held it tight, fearing that Yuzu would regret that at any moment and pull away. He wanted to prevent that, he wanted to enjoy that kiss for as long as he could.
But Yuzuru didn’t pull away, instead, his free hand grabbed a handful of Javi’s shirt, pulling him towards him forcefully and without hesitance, because Yuzuru got what he wanted. And Javier wanted to give him everything. Their blades made a clinking sound when they met, as Javier and Yuzuvier tried to push their bodies flush, never once breaking their kiss.
However, a ringing, strident sound caught them off guard, making them stumble out their kiss. Yuzuru’s phone was vibrating beside them on the floor, so when it stopped, Yuzuru detached his hand from Javier’s shirt and checked the called ID.
“My mum…” He whispered. It all seemed so silent suddenly, a thick tension. Their hands were still tightly clasped together, and they felt sweaty, but they didn’t want to let go. But then, Yuzuru looked at his phone again and frowned, his mouth forming the shape of an O. “Javi…”
“What…?” Javier said tentatively, alarm bells going off in his head. And then Yuzuru turned to him and showed him his locked screen, but it was in Japanese so Javier didn’t catch anything.
“It’s Sunday. No training today.” Yuzuru clarified, thrusting his mobile on Javier’s face to make his point clearer. “No training, but we both here.”
“It’s Sunday.” Javier said.
“Yes.” Yuzuru answered.
“There is no training on Sundays.”
And then, they both burst out laughing like mad men, tears gathering on the corner of his eyes. Their hands, however were still joined between them, against their joined thighs. They had both forgotten it was Sunday, and it was pure chance they had both forgotten it at the same time. But Javi liked to believe it was fate. He and Yuzuru were the ones who were meant to be together, he was sure of that.
“So,” Javi said, pecking Yuzuru’s lips softly, aligning his body towards the Japanese. Yuzuru did the same, and smiled at Javi. “there is no rush, is there?” Javier made his point by grabbing Yuzu’s neck again, bringing their mouths together. In-between kisses Yuzuru chuckled and shook his head.
“No, no rush.”