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Is It Too Late?

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The Japanese boy skipped towards the Russian, talking animatedly about some jump or another or how perfect you are on ice, Plushenko-san, that triple axel!, the Japanese’s smile growing wider when the Russian replied with some compliment to him, smiling softly at the younger skater. Javier watched all this happen from a few steps back, behind Marin and Miki, who were talking in rapid-fire Japanese and paid no attention to the sulking Spaniard.

 

It had been a few months since the Worlds, when Shoma had approached Javi with a nervous face and had told him in broken English that Yuzuru-san like you very much, he always talk of you so please make it stop! The Spaniard had bothered Shoma the rest of the night, pestering him about what he meant that Yuzuru liked him “very much”. He had first thought: well, of course he likes me, we are friends! But Shoma had just shaken his head and rolled his eyes, throwing some commentary in Japanese. Probably an insult. So, it had been a few months since he had been told that Yuzuru liked him romantically. And during these months he had paid extra attention to all the interaction Yuzuru had with him, comparing it to the other skaters because, there is no way he likes me. But yes. He liked him. Yuzuru himself had confirmed in an uncomfortable talk in the locker room. The Japanese had been terribly embarrassed and flustered, nearly leaving the place before Javi got a hold of him. But they had talked and it’s okay Javi, I know you like girls. And it was okay, because nothing changed between them, at least on Yuzu’s part. But Javi…

 

Javier had really avoided giving a name to the feelings he had for Yuzuru. He did not want to analyse them but faced with the fact that to Yuzuru he was more than a friend, he had had to come in terms to what he himself was feeling. It was not easy. As if figure skating wasn’t gay enough… Now I am actually gay? But he was not gay! He would be lying if his eyes had not wondered to the occasional male butt, after all, he was surrounded by them: locker rooms, practices, competitions, and man, a skater’s ass is wonderful. Still, he had not ever wondered, the thought had not even entered his head: to have a relationship with a guy.

 

That had been in his head for the past few months. Did he actually return Yuzuru’s feelings? Was it just that he liked the attention the boy gave him? His feelings towards him had not changed: he had been feeling that warmth in his chest when Yuzu smiled at him from the first day, he had always loved those warm brown eyes that almost disappeared when Yuzu was happy. His feelings had not changed, what made him think that maybe what he had been feeling all this time was… Love, and not in a friendly, bro, way.

 

He had tried really hard to not let Yuzuru think he was uncomfortable around him after the revelation but the Japanese had probably noticed his hesitance: he was not uncomfortable, not at all, he still longed to tickle him, make quad battles and hug him tight as he had always done. But every time he was around the boy he noticed acutely what he made him feel, all the clichés that he had heard in movies and read in books: this warm and nice dizziness, the bubbly feeling in his chest that made him want to smile for no reason - just because he was there - .

 

So, Yuzuru had noticed, and he had distanced himself from Javier. Something that hurt the Spaniard too much. Watching Yuzuru mingle happily with the other skaters, letting them hug him when it had always been Javi that was the giver of those warm and tight hugs, it hurt. And it was stupid, because even though Javi knew that what he was feeling was deeply embarrassing and was expected from a 15 year old, not a grown up, - he had decided to name it jealousy, but not quiet, because it hurt more than any type of jealousy he had ever felt -, Yuzuru had his right of having his own friends and was free to give hugs to anyone he wanted. But what really hurt is that he did not give any more hugs to Javier.

 

And the Spaniard had certainly not expected that being together for almost a month with Yuzuru and Yuzu’s idols, Evgeni and Johnny, would be so effing painful. Any chance he got, the Japanese would scurry to talk to the Russian or the American, babbling happily about whatever that came to his mind, a slight blush on his face from being so close to his own skating gods. How Yuzuru’s eyes shone when he watched them skate, how his mouth hung open in amazement, unable to move his eyes from the skater.

 

And even if - who was Javi kidding, there was no if - he did feel romantic feelings towards the Japanese boy, what right had he to act on them when Yuzuru was probably well over his crush on him, already moving on. What right had he to decide that yes, now I want you even though I rejected you. What right had he… Oh, but his blood boiled like a cauldron on fire when he watched those lingering touches on Evgeni’s arm, Johnny’s arms curling around Yuzuru’s super small waist.

 

He had no right, but he wanted to tell him, he needed to tell him.

 

So Javi found himself on Yuzuru’s hotel room door in Makuhari, shuffling nervously from one foot to another. He rattled his knuckles too hard against the door and cleared his throat, going over the speech he had planned in his head. He had it all planned out, he would say what he had to say and he would leave before he regretted the decision.

 

“Javi?” He had not even noticed Yuzuru opening the door, who now was watching Javi curiously, one eyebrow arched and an almost-smile in his lips. The Japanese boy, ever so polite, left Javi space to enter the room and the Spaniard had to gather a lot of courage to step through the threshold.

 

Yuzuru’s room was a mess. The bedding was all rumpled and over the bed there were all kinds of things: his Nintendos, training clothes, different Poohs (because THE Pooh had his own special place on the bedside table), mangas, his iPad and his multiple notebooks. It was so Yuzuru. Before really knowing him he would have thought him to be a really tidy and neat boy, with a pristine bedroom. But no, Yuzuru was as messy as they come; his room back in Toronto was a jungle.

 

“Sorry for mess, I was not expecting visitors.” Yuzuru said with a nervous laugh.

 

“Aw come on, we’ve roomed together before, I know how messy you get.” Javi joked half-heartedly, trying to ease the the tension off his body. Yuzuru smiled at him embarrassedly, staring at the mess that was his bed. “Yuzu I wanted to tell you…” And thus his speech began. But he was quickly cut off who shook his head rapidly, his eyes clenched shut.

 

“I know what you want say. But I… I’m sorry. I don’t want you to know because I know this happen. You don’t want being my friend. I know, because you are disgusted or… I don’t know. But it’s okay. I understand.” Yuzuru rambled, staring at the floor the whole time, his hands tightly gripping his sweater.

 

“What? No! No! No, Yuzu, that’s not it at all! It’s-it’s actually the contraire!” Javier exclaimed, approaching the Japanese boy. “Why would you think I am disgusted?”

 

“Because you not talk to me, you are not like before! I notice you don’t want being with me so…” And then Javier could not hold it back anymore. He cradled Yuzuru’s head with his hands and stared at his eyes, forcing him to meet his stare.

 

“Hear me out, Yuzuru. I avoided you because I am a coward who was too afraid to face his feelings because… Because I did not want to believe I could be attracted to a guy, I’m just this stupid but… But seeing you here.. I-I… I can’t hold it anymore, Yuzu. I’m sorry. I know I rejected you when you told me and now I am going to be the asshole telling you that I actually feel something towards you. I’m sorry. You have probably already gotten over your crush and here I am, making this more of a mess than it already is and-”

 

“Javi?” Yuzuru cut him off, with a smile on his lips. “Shut up.” And then with too much force, the Japanese boy clashed their lips together. Their teeth clashed painfully and they both gasped, pulling apart. Their hands flew to their mouths, checking if there was any damage. But then their eyes met and they started laughing like mad men, tears that they had been holding out of tension slipping down their cheeks. And in the midst of their glee, Javi cupped Yuzu’s cheeks and brought their lips together softly, slotting them like a puzzle.

 

It was long before any of them parted and it was for Yuzu’s need of air they did. Still, they remained as close as they could, their foreheads and noses touching, breathing each other’s air.

 

“To think we could have done that for months…” Javi whispered, like it was a secret. Yuzuru smiled mischievously.

 

“Javi have to make up for these months.”

 

Javi laughed and kissed Yuzuru again after whispering: “Oh, I will.”