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Brand New Sun

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It’s an early Saturday morning when he feels his wife’s alarm go off. It wakes him up but he tries to not stir too much. There was a storm last night and Eito had asked them if he could sleep with them. When they said yes, instead of getting in the spot between Eijun and Wakana, he had settle for Eijun's right side, the closest to the window. That’s why he tries to stay still, to avoid waking up their toddler.

He hugs Eito tightly and cuddles with him under the covers, when he’s about to fall back asleep he feels Wakana touch his shoulder, he looks back slowly and when he sees Wakana's crying face he untangles Eito from his body and gets up to talk to his wife.

“What happened?” he asks concerned, “are you okay?”

“I’m leaving,” she says in between hiccups and sobs.

“What do you mean?” he already knows what she means, but doesn’t want to admit it. They had been married for over 10 years, and together for even more time. He knows Wakana well, and he can see enough to know that this was coming, but never thought it’d be this soon. He asks mostly due to shock and because he’s still half asleep, even maybe to feel that this isn’t real.

“I’m leaving, I’m tired and I wanna go,” she cries.

“Where are you going? You can’t just leave like that. How am I supposed to take care of Eito by myself?” he’s getting desperate, he has to go to work on Monday, today and tomorrow he can manage, but what about the rest of the week, the rest of the month? “When are you coming back?”

“I’m not.”

“What do you mean?” she can’t possibly mean what Eijun is thinking.

“I’m not coming back.”

He knows there’s not much he can do. She already packed most of the stuff. Eijun came back, from an away game, rather late last night, so he didn’t notice all her bags near the entrance, or her part of the closet empty. He’s wondering if she packed in front of Eito, if it was like that, what did she say to their son.

“You can’t just leave us like that. You can’t leave Eito like that, he’s just a toddler, he can’t just… you can’t leave him like that,” he’s shouting and he only notices when he feels Eito clinging to his legs. He lifts him up and wipes away the tears going down his face, while he does that, though, Wakana exits the room and he chases after her.

“Please,” he begs with his crying child on his arms, “don’t leave him.”

“He doesn’t even like me,” she spits, crying.

“Don’t say that.”

“He’s gonna be better without me.”

“Stop,” now he wants to cry too.

“Good-bye, Eijun.”

He doesn’t have time to retort something back before she grabs her bags and leaves.

“Daddy?” Eito says, he puts his tiny hands in Eijun’s face and then wipes the tears Eijun didn’t realize he shed. He does it the same way Eijun did it to him. “Where is mommy going?”

He has no idea, Wakana is a complex person and even when he knows her so well, he sometimes has no idea what’s going through her head. He doesn’t know. He doubts she’s going back to their hometown, and she still has to go to work on Monday so maybe she didn’t go that far away. She could always get transferred or she can quit. There are so many possibilities and so many decisions she could take.

 “Daddy?” Eito asks again, it cuts him off from his trance-like state, immediately. He’ll talk to Wakana, no matter what it takes. He can’t do this alone, he can’t raise his child alone.

“What do you say about breakfast, buddy?” he tries to divert the question, it’s not gonna last forever but it will have to do, for now. Eito’s eyes light up and it’s enough to make Eijun stop crying and try to get it together, at least for the weekend.


They decided to meet in a café near Wakana's workplace, he’s waiting on the table, it’s been about 10 minutes and Wakana still hasn’t arrived. He’s starting to think she’s not even going to show up when the doorbell chimes.

“I’m sorry I’m late,” she apologizes. The first face-to-face words they exchange since Wakana left on the weekend.

“It’s okay,” Eijun reassures her, and then they stay quiet. He’s not sure how to approach the topic, he has so many questions he needs to ask her and all of them seem too important to let out. But still, there’s one that he’s been desperate to ask.

“Why?”

She takes a deep breath, like she already expected that to be the first question. “You know we’ve been together for 20 years, right?” Eijun nods. “in all those years, did you truly felt happy? I’m not asking about maybe the first few years or when we got married, I mean in general. Did you picture yourself with me for our whole life?” Eijun nods again and she looks surprised. “Well I didn’t.” she says, after a while.

She’s really calm, not even a hint of regret on her face, and as impossible as it may sound, she looks better. Eijun though, he’s exhausted. It’s not like he didn’t take care of Eito before, there’s a reason why he is so attached to Eijun, but most of the times, his schedules are all over the place, so he can’t make lunch for him every day or take him to the kindergarten or just spend that much time with him.

When Wakana was home they took care of everything together, getting Eito ready, making breakfast and lunch, driving him to the kindergarten and after that the daycare, preparing dinner for them, it depended on their schedules but they had a routine, now he has to do it all by himself. He’s just lucky that Eito is rather independent and willing to help Eijun, maybe he just wants to be with Eijun but regardless. He helps a lot.

He never realized how much they did because it wasn’t that much with the two of them. If he barely did everything for a weekend and when he didn’t have to work, he doesn’t know how he’s going to do if Wakana never comes back, so he asks her again when is she coming back.

“I already told you I won’t come back, you’ll do well without me.”

“There’s no way you know that, and this isn’t about me, Wakana,” he tries to reason, “this is about Eito, about you, you can’t just abandon your family like that, we’re married, you don’t get an out so easily,” he’s angry. He doesn’t get angry that much, but this situation is too much for him to handle, and who can blame him.

“I don’t love you anymore,” she says, way too loud apparently because now the café is completely quiet and looking at them, none of them care, though. “I don’t love you. You think it’s easy for me to go back every night to my house when my own child likes my husband better because I can’t be with him all the time? Do you think it’s easy for me to sleep next to you when I don’t want to be with you and I know you don’t want to be with me either? Do you think it’s easy for me to pretend like there’s nothing wrong with our marriage? I’m so used to you I don’t even see you as my husband anymore,” her eyes are glossy but she doesn’t dare to cry, she’s acting tough.

“You made me so happy, Eijun.” She’s talking quietly again, it’s almost a whisper. “I have never been as happy as in our wedding day, or the day you proposed. I can still remember the day I confessed, over 20 years ago… that was the best day.” She sighs. “I don’t feel that happiness or love anymore. Not for you or Eito… or myself.”

He looks down, she’s not completely wrong. The magic between them is long gone. It feels more like they’re siblings or roommates. It’s hard for him to admit it because he’s been pretending that happiness for years. He’s been pretending he loves her, he does love her, just not like that.

It makes him feel bad because he always wanted this domestic life, a good job, a wife, a son, a house… everything he has is what he always wanted, but it was different for Wakana. She didn’t want children, or settling down, she wanted to travel and be free. Their marriage and their kid and everything else just happened because they thought that’s how it was supposed to be, not because they truly wanted, or at least Wakana didn’t.

And Eijun knows this is it. He knows there’s not going back. They’re already old, if Wakana has made up her mind, that means its definitive. She’s not going back and Eijun is not going to force her into it because he would only make her miserable, so he just accepts it.

I’m sorry,” she says and now she looks like she is sorry, but still, no regret. “Please tell Eito I love him and that I’ll visit him when I can.”

“I will,” he says and then she’s gone.


It’s on his way to where he parked his car when the realization dawns on him. He needs to pick Eito up from the kindergarten and take him to the daycare, he thinks about what he should say but nothing comes up, so he ends up calling his boss and asking him for the rest of the day. He’s lucky he likes him enough to say yes.

He stops in front of the kindergarten and doesn’t dare to get out of the car for a while, he has to tell the teachers he’ll be the only one coming for Eito from now on, and it's gonna spread like wildfire and the rumors won’t stop for a long time, but there’s nothing else he can do.

He finally gathers enough courage to do it and the nasty looks he gets from the other moms who heard make him think that maybe he should change schools but the situation is bad enough already to make it worst by either moving or transferring.

Eito runs to him as soon as he sees him and that makes him forget everything, he’ll be a mom and a dad now, he can’t break under pressure, not when there’s someone else depending only on him. And he’ll try his hardest to be the best dad, he’ll try even more now, he loves his son so much, he’ll do everything for him, no matter what it takes.

They will get out of this situation, together. Just the two of them.

Chapter Text

“Ei-chan?” Eijun calls his son. It’s already past 7 in the morning and both of them are late. He can simply make an excuse for Eito but pulling the 'single parent slash just divorced' excuse isn’t going to work anymore. It’s already been more than 2 months, after all… and he isn’t divorced just yet.

When Eito doesn’t answer and he can’t hear him at all, Eijun gets worried. He’s usually slow getting ready, not being fully used to it, but he’s taking more than usual. Eijun decides that it’s better if he goes to check what’s his son up to. He finishes packing their lunchboxes and goes to the end of the hall where Eito's room is. The door is open and Eito’s on the bed looking at his feet. He's wearing just the left shoe, while his right foot is half socked.

“What’s wrong, Ei-chan?” Eijun asks concerned when Eito doesn’t even look at him.

His son stays quiet and unmoving, Eijun wonders if he even noticed he’s there.

“Ei-chan?” he kneels in front of Eito and puts his right shoe on, “what’s wrong?” he asks again… this time he sits on the bed and cradles Eito on his arms. He kisses his forehead and rocks him gently, being late be damned.

“When is mommy coming back?” Eito says softly, he’s at the verge of tears but he’s acting tough, just like Wakana used to, still does? Who knows. He can’t think now, doesn't know what to say, either.

Honestly, he’s devastated. He’s been trying to hide it. To hide he can barely sleep at night or think clearly through the day. He'd been with Wakana for so many years, the thought of doing this by himself never crossed his mind. At this point Eijun doesn’t know if he misses Wakana or just how easy it was to do stuff when they did it together. And he knows Wakana won’t come back, and he also knew that the time when Eito asked about that would be near, but he still doesn’t feel prepared enough to answer. He needs to get Eito to the kindergarten and he needs to go to work.

He thinks of an excuse but he comes empty handed... Lately, it happens a lot.

“Come on, bud. Gotta go to school…” he says standing up with Eito still on his arms. He grabs his son’s backpack and the lunchboxes he left in the kitchen. Eito looks sad, and it breaks Eijun’s heart but there’s not much he can do.

He sits Eito in the car seat, locks the seatbelt and finally gives in, “I’ll tell you everything about mommy when we get home, okay?” Eito smiles and he lets the topic go, for now.


Luckily his boss understood the situation and only scolded him a little for being late. After that half of the day is a blur with Eijun thinking what to tell his son. He’s sure that as soon and he opens his mouth, he’ll start crying. And whoever said adults or men don’t cry, didn’t know Eijun.

He gets to the conclusion that lying will only make it worse and Eito doesn’t deserve to be lied to after he helps Eijun so much. The problem is that he’s still a kid, a baby for Eijun, so he can’t just say it how he would say it to an adult, no matter how mature Eito is.

So, he makes an entire plan of how to say it and what to say to Eito. He’ll end up saying whatever he thinks of in that moment but it’s always good to have a strategy, one that won’t blow up on his face as soon as he talks.

First, though, he has to take Eito to the daycare and needless to say, he seems uncomfortable. It looks like Eito haven’t forgotten what his father promised him and apparently, according to his teacher, he didn’t want to participate in any activity they did today. Despite being so like Wakana, the way he worries about something for hours and even days, is the same as Eijun. 

The drive to the daycare is a quiet one. Luckily is not far. While the kindergarten is closer to the house, the daycare is closest to the college where Eijun works. They tried to look for a kindergarten that offered an after-school program, but the only one was in the next town and too far for either Wakana or him to pick Eito up. So, it ends up being a very uncomfortable 15-minutes ride.

Before he goes back to work, he talks to the lady who takes care of Eijun and asks her to please tell him how Eito acts today, plus to not force him to participate in games because he feels down. The lady gives him a look, like all the other did when they found out he was going to take care of Eito by himself. He’s gotten used to the looks, but they still hurt a bit.

What’s left of the day, for Eijun, is spent by over-thinking every little thing that could go wrong, silly as it is, it’s not like Eito is going to run away or hate him… but part of him feels like his son could blame him because his mother left, but that’s just the worst-case scenario.


As soon as they make it home, Eito runs to the kitchen and opens the fridge, that’s the first thing they do when they make it home, cook dinner for themselves, Eijun is glad that at least that’s staying the same. They (mostly Eijun) take his time making dinner, while he chops veggies, Eito sets the table and the like. It usually doesn’t take a lot to do it, but because some of the plates and bowls are in places Eito can’t reach, Eijun takes more time to hand them to his son.

In a matter of time, they sit in front of each other on the table. He thinks about talking after they’re done eating but he only ends up chewing the same for ages without being even able to swallow it, he looks to his son who had no problem whatsoever, his bowl and plates are completely empty already.

“I’m done,” he says rather proud and Eijun smiles.

“You wanna watch a movie?” he asks his son.

“I wanna talk about mommy.”

“Wanna do it in your room, maybe?” he asks again. Hoping that his son will say yes.

“Now,” Eito demands and Eijun is not a really strict father, or strict at all but he makes note to talk to his son about how he asks for things... later.

He sighs. “Mommy isn’t coming back."

“Why?" Eito looks confused, and then, completely unfazed he says "She doesn’t like me anymore?” Meanwhile Eijun is about to burst in tears, that's another one of Wakana's qualities, how he can be so calm about some stuff.

“No, she doesn’t like me anymore.” 

He looks down, forces himself not to cry but he’s been holding it in for so long he can’t help it. He’s frustrated and exhausted, he hasn’t had a good night sleep in 2 or so months. At works he gets to distract himself with something he loves, be it training the students, helping them or coming up with new strategies they can use with the coach he’s assisting, at home, he gets to be with Eito, they watch movies and make dinner and sometimes bath together, but when the night comes and he finds himself alone in bed, all kinds of dark thought pop in his mind.

While he loves his job, and couldn’t ask for something better, economically speaking he can’t take care of Eito like that, though right now it’s not a problem, he’ll eventually have to pay for school and supplies and he still has to pay their place, the car, the groceries and, it’s just too much for him to make it alone.

He’s been trying to act strong and all for Eito but just one simple question shatters the façade he created and leaves him feeling raw and exposed.

“Daddy?” Eito asks, now next to his father.

“I’m sorry mommy left,” Eijun cries.

“I don’t care about mommy, I don’t like her anymore, she’s bad.” It takes a moment for Eijun to process what his son said and when it does, his sadness becomes anger and he’s standing so fast Eito has to backtrack a little.

“Don’t say that,” Eijun grits his teeth, Eito is shocked and sobbing but he’s so mad, he doesn’t stop talking, “Don’t ever say that, Eito. Your mother is a good mom. She had her reasons. You get to question her as much as I get to. She loves you and she misses you, don’t talk about her that way.”

“Mommy made daddy cry. Mommy is bad,” Eito screams, burying his face in Eijun’s lower stomach. He tries to calm down before he scares his son more and then talks.

“Don’t say that, Ei-chan, you love mommy, right?” Eijun feels him nodding. “And you love daddy, too?” nods again. He takes a deep breath and finally asks what he’s wanted to ask since Wakana left.

“Do you want to go with mommy?” Eito detaches himself from Eijun and looks at him straight in the eyes. “It’s okay if you want to be with mommy, I’m not gonna get mad.” He kneels in front of Eito to be, somehow, the same height. To make Eito feel like they’re equal.

“I love daddy,” he says, hugging Eijun again. “I love mommy, too. But I wanna be with daddy more.”

And that’s enough to make Eijun breathe again.


He tugs Eito to bed, though it’s a little hard because he’s clinging to Eijun’s neck but he manages. It’s only past 9 p.m. but after dinner both of them were so tired, Eito fell asleep as soon as he curled next to Eijun on the couch, so he decides to call it a night after taking a quick bath, which he had to end sooner when he heard the doorbell ring.

He opens the door without checking who's out, but he feels like he made them wait a lot so…

“Oh, hey,” the stranger says. It's a man, he’s slightly shorter than Eijun and way thinner, his spiky hair is combed in a mohawk and has a greenish color. He's smiling but it looks more like a smirk. It looks good on him, though. To be honest, he’s pretty handsome… not like Eijun should be thinking that, but it's not the first time he thinks that way, anyway.

“Hi,” Eijun replies dumbly, eyeing the stranger.

“I’m Kuramochi Youichi, Mochi for short. I’m your new neighbor.”

Chapter Text

He honest to God has no idea how he made it home. His legs are all wobbly and his knees are about to give in. Kuramochi Youichi, 36 years old, single and gay as fuck for his neighbor. 

It’s not only for his neighbor, he’s has that ‘preference’ since he can remember and it’s not like it bothers him. Back in elementary school, while the rest of his classmates talked about girls in other classrooms, he couldn’t help but feel absolutely nothing. It wasn’t until years later, in high school, when he got a crush on one of his upperclassmen that he realized he was gay. 

Coming out was a whole different deal, not in a hard way… to his family he was still the same. Most parents would’ve been worried about their kid getting bullied, but the only thing that worried his mother was Youichi being the bully. Go figure. 

One way or another, he felt like his level of gayness went up when his neighbor opened the door. He, the neighbor that is, only had a pair of yellow sweatpants on, while his chest was bare, with only a towel on his head, which made Youichi think that he interrupted his shower and… well, to put it bluntly, the guy was uppercase hot. He was taller than Youichi, brown haired and looked slightly older. His skin had the most delicious caramel color, his broad shoulders were but a clusterfuck of freckles and his bright orange-y colored eyes were almond-shaped and big. And just when Youichi thought he could not get any more perfect, he talked. 

His voice was a melody to Youichi’s ears. It wasn’t really deep or anything, but it had this warm feeling that relaxed him in a second and made all his nervousness go away. And because he is a fucking pervert, the first thought that came to his mind was hearing that lovely voice moan under him, or riding him… he was okay with both… His voice was loud too so that was a huge plus. 

And his name,  Sawamura Eijun... wasn't particularly special or memorable but thinking about calling him just 'Eijun' sounded very nice. 


Saying that Eijun was “gay” would be a lie. It’s just that some people are more aesthetically pleasant than others and he knew how to appreciate that.  

Take his neighbor for example… and only that… shorter, thinner and younger than Eijun. His wolfish smile and green Mohawk looked very good on him… if it were Eijun, he could never pull that look, and that was okay… it suited him better. His name, too. Kuramochi Youichi, Mochi for short. Something in it sounded wild and perfect for him. His skin was lighter than Eijun’s, and his eyes were a sort of fire-y color, that made him look even wilder. 

So yeah, he was very nice to look but that didn’t make Eijun gay, right?  

Their first encounter was anything but good. He was in such a hurry that he didn’t even put a shirt on… he opened the door with only sweatpants on and his hair still wet. It was too late for him to realize and only did when his neighbor gave him what looked like a once over. Embarrassing as it was… he tried to play it cool. Luckily his neighbor, Mochi, excused himself rather quickly and that was it. 

He thought of maybe cooking something for Mochi but decided not to for the sake of not being creepy. He still was thinking about it, though.


Youichi glanced at the bedside table where the clock was and realized it was only 6:33 a.m. for some reason he woke up early, despite having a day off thanks to the moving and his new boss being a total sweetheart, so he tried to go back to sleep. “Tried” being the key word because as soon as his head touched the pillow, he heard his doorbell… that was probably what woke him up. 

He opens the door on his pajamas and regrets it immediately when he sees the eye candy who’s at the door. 

“Kuramochi-san,” Sawamura Eijun says, standing in front of him, wearing a suit, at 6:33 am, while Youichi is wearing nothing but sweatpants and an old ratty shirt. 

“Mochi,” comes out of his mouth. 

“Right, Mochi-san, I made this for you, as a welcome to the building… I’m sorry our first meeting wasn’t so nice,” he apologizes and Youichi only catches half of it. Eijun offers a lunchbox to him and he unconsciously grabs it. “I'm sorry,” his neighbor continues, “did I wake you?” 

He’s barely awake, though. “Don’t worry, I was already awake.” He won’t know anyway. 

“Oh, okay.” He smiles and Youichi dies a little. “I’m not really a good cook, by the way. My wife usually takes care of the cooking, so.” Now he dies for real. “Have a nice day, Mochi-san.” He says and walks to his place where Youichi sees him open the door to let a little kid out. 

Fuck… he’s married, if that doesn’t scream straight and out of your league, the little kid who looks exactly like him, does. He sighs and gives up on sleeping, mostly because that probably tasty lunchbox made by his hot married neighbor, is calling him. 

He opens the lid and takes a look at the food. It looks magnificent. The taste, though, was… not so tasty. Not in a non-eatable way, but in a ‘there’s room for improvement’ way… a lot of room, actually. He still eats it all. And then decides to have his last lazy day before he has to go back to work. 

At the end, his lazy day is spent unpacking and re-arranging his furniture, or at least half of the day the other half he thinks about how to get the lunchbox back without looking like a creep. It slips his mind that giving back something he, sort of, borrowed, is no reason to feel like a creep. But alas. 


 He's running late… again. It’s happening more and more, lately. He got just in time for work in the morning but at midday when he had to pick up Eito and leave him at the daycare, he barely made it. No matter how much of a super father he thinks he can be, he needs help, and to make matters worse, later that day he got notified and delivered the information about the divorce plus the papers he needs to sign to be done with everything, including child custody. 

By the time he arrives to the daycare, he’s over an hour late. If you ask him what breaks his heart more... it’s not seeing Eito waiting for him, but Eito being completely okay and cooperative to him being late. 

He tries to make small talk, asks Eito how he’s doing, how was his day, what did he do… and all that stuff. And Eito actually talks and talks and talks a bit more...

They make it home and Eito is still talking. While holding his bag and the folder with the divorce and custody papers in one hand, with the other hand, he carries his son out the car and up the stairs and notices that he likes to do that a lot. His son might be a little too tall and heavy for his age, just like Eijun was years and years ago, but that doesn’t change the fact that he still sees him as a baby and after Wakana left, doing this feels like being closer to Eito. 


 It's the fifth time he hears someone coming up the stairs and the fifth time he opens the door to take a peek, finally glad that, this time, the Hot Married Neighbor is the one coming up the stairs… with his cute son on his arms. And boy that kid is big, so how fucking strong must Hot Married Neighbor be. Bet he could bench press Youichi.  

“Hey,” he greets them when they’re opening the door, mostly Eijun, while getting his son down. 

“Hi,” Eijun says back, and then, “How was the food?” 

“It was great!” …again, he'll never know. And even if it is a lie, he’d do it again if he gets to see Eijun smile so brightly like he is doing right know. 

“Wanna come in and have food with us?” 

It takes all of Youichi's willpower to not scream yes and jump him, but he manages a civilized “Won’t your wife mind?” and it immediately seems to him like he stepped on a landmine because Eijun laughs awkwardly and scratches his nape while looking down. And Youichi is no people person but he knows those uncomfortable signs. 

“Just us boys tonight,” Eijun says… still looking down. And isn’t that peachy, just what Youichi likes, so he says yes. He closes his door and leaves his phone in so nobody interrupts him, specially Miyuki who, even at this time and age, has the worst timing ever… and then he walks back to where Eijun is, still holding the door for him. 

Eijun’s place is slightly bigger than his, the floor is littered with toys and sheets with a bunch of unreadable scribbles. The first thing Eijun does as soon as he gets in is throw the folder –Youichi didn’t notice he was holding– on a pile that’s on the couch, the papers tilt to one side making the whole pile fall, it’s basically a mess, but if feels homey and well, like someone actually lives here, whereas Youichi’s place has one room less so everything has to fit in his bedroom and living room, but because he just moved, everything looks empty and smells generic and fake, not even new. 

He faintly hears Eijun telling him to sit wherever he wants while he helps Eito, and Youichi guesses that’s his son’s name, who during their whole exchange only hid behind Eijun’s legs. So, he sits on the couch, after putting some of the papers aside on the coffee table in from of the T.V. but one of them catches his attention… it’s the folder Eijun was holding. 

Most of the papers are half out, so it’s completely by mistake that one of them falls to the floor, and hey Youichi is just trying to help so it is also completely by mistake that he sees the uppercased bold letters at the top of the sheet that say “Divorce Agreement”. 

Eijun catching him holding the sheet is also a mistake, one that he thinks he’ll have to pay with going home without dinner but instead Eijun just smiles sadly. 

That wakes something up in Youichi, the sad smile and the papers. It’s a strange feeling. It’s a mix of hope and sadness… it’s mostly sadness. Knowing that Eijun is more than available is nice and all, but no matter if he thinks his Hot Divorced Neighbor is cute, or if he hates him, being in this situation is not something he'd like anybody to go through, his mother did and it almost killed him to see her. 

He doesn't want to see that sad smile on his face anymore and he’ll try his hardest to avoid it, and well, who knows… maybe one day he’ll have the chance he wants and maybe he’ll get to fall in love with someone the same way that person would fall in love with him… and maybe he wants that person to be Eijun… even if he barely knows the guy and probably just finds him hot, what he’s seen is enough to prove him that Eijun is a good father and that’s the only thing Youichi needs to know right now.

Chapter Text

Their friendship comes rather easily for people who know nothing about each other, but that’s what friendship is about, getting to know the other. At first, it feels like a dance, one of them does something that the other mirrors. Eijun knocks Youichi’s door every other morning to give him food, and in exchange he knocks Eijun’s door every other night to return the plastic containers.

And it’s one of those nights that completely accidental, Youichi tells Eijun he can cook and he’ll like to return the favor. It’s that same night when Youichi decides he should cook dinner for the Sawamura boys.

And who can blame him. There’s something satisfying about cooking for your neighbor and his toddler, mostly because he gets to see Eijun and Eito's face change in bliss every single time they eat his food, like they’re doing it for the first time.

Thanks to that night, they fall in a routine where Eijun gives food to Youichi (he’s improving more and more everyday) and Youichi offers to cook dinner for them. Most of the time he takes the lunchboxes to work so he can wake up a little later than usual because he doesn’t have to prepare anything… the nights he doesn’t cook for the Sawamura's, he eats Eijun’s food for breakfast.

And it’s a weird thing. It’s been a little over two months since Youichi moved but it feels like they’d known each other for longer, though he’s too embarrassed to say that. And while it feels really good to be with him… with them, it worries him that his feelings for Eijun might grow into something more real, something he won’t be able to control.


Being friends with Mochi is not what Eijun expected at all. He might look easygoing and like he doesn’t care about people but it’s the complete opposite. Lately he’s come everyday to make dinner and just to hang out with Eijun and Eito. His son loves him, and that’s honestly the most approval he can get.

It might be because he’s new in town and Eijun is the only person he talks to in the building, or because he genuinely likes them both, but one way or another, it makes Eijun happy, and it keeps him distracted from his life and what's going on in it, so that’s a huge plus.

Mochi cooking for them is what brought them to the situation they’re in, right now.

They’re both sitting in from of the T.V. but on the floor and with their backs on the couch. It’s Friday, way past midnight and they might have had a little too much to drink. With Eito put to bed and even if it is a free day tomorrow, it’s not like they, or at least Eijun, can go out. So, Mochi offered to accompany him and they ended up drinking in Eijun’s place, that way he can keep a better eye on Eito in case something happens.

He notices how much of a light-weight he became. Ever since Eito was born, he started coming back home right after work… there were a few occasions where he would go drinking with the other professors and coaches but he always left early. So, his body is not used to drinking anymore, and even with only a couple of beers, he’s feeling dizzy.


Eijun is definitely drunk. He’s slurring and his eyes are only half open. Youichi can’t really tell what he’s saying anymore but he has this goofy grin that makes him smile. But it’s not like he can talk about Eijun when the slight buzz he was feeling a few moments ago, is already much more than that.

“Have I ever told you about Wakana?” Eijun slurs. Youichi doesn’t know who Wakana is, or if that’s even what Eijun meant to say with how drunk he is, but either way he shakes his head no.

“You see,” Eijun sits straight turning to Youichi, who does the same. “She confessed to me when we were 15 years old. We were in the same middle school and had known each other forever. So, I said yes. I mean I was a teen, anyone asking me the that would’ve gotten the same answer.” Youichi laughs just when Eijun takes a sip of his beer but he ends up laughing too so the beer he just tried to drink ends up dripping down his mouth and chin, which makes both laugh even more, but eventually Eijun calms down enough to continue the story.

“So, we started dating. At first, I thought we could never last, because I had no idea how to be a boyfriend. Surprisingly enough we were still together when we graduated high school. You didn’t hear wrong. We were together for about 5 years, and for the sake of all those years, we decided to continue dating even during college. The first few months were a living hell. I mean, we went from being in the same classroom, high school and neighborhood to miles away.” Youichi is starting to figure he might be talking about his ex-wife. Though he’s a bit skeptical because there is no way in hell that two people can be together for so long.

“Needless to say, we got used to it rather fast. She’d visit me every weekend, and I'd do the same. We tried to match our schedules to be free the same days, or to go back together to our hometown.” He’s opening another 2 cans of beer while he talks and gives one to Youichi. They should stop drinking but he’s way to interested in how such a love story could come to an end. He takes the beer and mumbles a quiet ‘thank you.’

“Cut to college graduation, we decide to move in together. You know, we’re adults, who by that moment had been dating for I think 10 years, can’t remember. So, while I work for free in a high school as a student-teacher, and take a night part time job, she tries to get a job in advertising, and also works in a sports store full time.” Youichi is starting to think that Eijun is way far gone, because that story cannot be true at all.

“And if we thought college was hard, it was nothing compared to what we were going through. Just when we were about to give up and go back to our hometown, she finally got a job and I got promoted to a teacher, with a stable income and all. It’s not what I wanted but I figured that’s how you start. At the end, we finally got enough to move to a better place and, well, I popped the question. You know, I actually asked her to marry me on our 10th anniversary. Anyway, she says yes and all and we started planning our wedding.”

Eijun finally puts his drink down and Youichi is grateful for that. After all, he doesn’t look like the kind of man to go out every other weekend to drink, mostly because Youichi knows about Eito, but in general he just doesn’t look like it. He’s about to put down his own beer too and call it a night, but then Eijun changes his posture to a more comfortable and (thank god) closer to Youichi, when his beer tips to one side and he notices that Eijun put the beer down because he already finished it all. For someone who doesn’t look that outgoing, he sure can chug down those beers.

“So, as I was saying,” Eijun continues, without a beer this time. “There’s just one little detail. With the rent plus the groceries and all the living expenses, we don’t make enough to pay for a wedding, so I start looking for a job, though we know that won’t be enough, but we don’t really care. I mean, we’re together, that’s what matters. When I do get a job, the one I have right now—” he stays quiet, thinking and says, “—Side note, I work with a college baseball team. I’m the assistant of the coach, hoping to become their coach. Anyhow, to celebrate, we just go to the nearest courthouse and get married. Then we live happily ever after.”

That confuses Youichi. He divorced her, right? He spends more time in Eijun’s place than his own and he didn’t even know who Wakana was. He sees no photos of her and not even Eito mentions her name, plus the Divorce Agreement thing... that can’t be the end of the story. And he’s right because Eijun sighs and talks.

“That’s a nice story, isn’t it?” Youichi nods.

“Five years later, we have the biggest blessing I could ever ask for. And part of me thinks, this is what life is about, a family, a job I like, being economically stable, sadly enough, Wakana doesn’t think the same way. Give it another five years and I wake up a Saturday morning to Eito sleeping with me and a crying Wakana with her bags next to the door—”

“Wait, wait,” Youichi interrupts him. “She just, like… left you, her husband, on a Saturday morning while you had your toddler in your arms?” Youichi can’t believe it. “After 20 years together, she just left?” Eijun nods. “How could she?”

“I don’t blame her,” Eijun says.

“What?”

“She never wanted to get married or have babies—”

“That’s not an excuse, Sawamura.” He’s so mad. “If she didn’t want that—”

“It’s my fault.”

“How is that your fault?” Youichi asks exasperated. “You’re not the one who left her to take care of a baby after being together for 20 years. She’s so selfish, you don’t deserve her.”

“You know, Eito said he hated her,” he smiles sadly. “After she left, I talked to him and he said he hated her for making me cry, I mean he’s barely 5 years old but he’s smart enough to say stuff like that. Not only that but he helps me so much. My life was falling apart without her here but he still kept me busy and helped me when I needed someone the most. You do, too Mochi-san. Every time you make dinner for us, every Friday you keep me company. Every morning that you accept my awful food. Every time you knock on my door, helps me so much. And I’m so grateful I don’t even know how to explain it.” He looks up to Youichi who stays speechless and unmoving where he is.

“Thank you.” Eijun tears up. He’s about to cry for real, but even like that he manages to talk in such a genuine way that Youichi’s heart skips a beat. There’s no hesitation or doubt in his voice. He really means that thank you. And then it comes to Youichi that maybe Eijun is not as drunk as he thought.

And he can’t help it when he looks at Eijun's eyes and really sees what saying that ‘thank you’ meant to Eijun. And he can’t help it when his right hand moves to touch Eijun’s left. And he can’t help it when he moves closer and closer to Eijun's lips, and he thinks Eijun can’t help it either, because he also gets closer to Youichi. And he swears he hears a drumroll when their lips are millimeters apart, or maybe it’s just the sound of their heartbeats, but it feels real and it tickles, he doesn’t know where but it does.

They’re so close, their lips are almost touching and he closes his eyes and dives in.


They’re kissing.

It’s not a deep kiss, or maybe not even a kiss at all. Their lips are just touching but not moving. It feels warm. He’s never kissed anybody but Wakana. Kissing Wakana wasn’t like this.

He wants to wrap his hands around Mochi’s neck but he doesn’t dare. He’s afraid that if he moves, the moment will end. He doesn’t want this to end.

“Daddy,” Eito calls him from his room and the moment ends.

“I’m…” Mochi stutters. “I’m sorry.”

“It’s okay,” Eijun stands up.

“It’s not. You were vulnerable and I took advantage of that… I should go home,” he says standing up too but just that, not moving closer to the door.

“Daddy!” Eito screams louder and Eijun is thankful for that because who knows what would’ve happened if they kept going.

“Ah, yeah… you should. But remember that you didn’t force me to do anything.” He emphasizes the last part because Mochi didn’t do anything wrong by himself. Eijun didn’t stop him and he even got closer too. Hell, he wanted to kiss him. “I’ll call you later.”

He hears the door close behind Mochi when he’s on his way to Eito’s room and regrets he didn’t tell Mochi to wait for him to be done. He doesn’t know what he’d have said but still.

That night, Eijun goes to sleep with a bittersweet sensation, his lips feel warm despite the cold temperature out and his head is still fuzzy but he can’t help the smile that creeps up his face.


That night Youichi goes to sleep with a bitter feeling, his lips burn so much he can’t stop touching them and it's hard for him to go to sleep because of a headache.

Part of him feels bad... he made Eijun do that. But regardless, he goes to bed with a smile and the promise of a call.

Chapter Text

He doesn’t dare to go back to the Sawamura’s place. It’s not like he’s scared, he just doesn’t want to deal with the aftermath of their kiss. He regrets it… so bad, but it was just one of those things you can’t just not do.

Ever since Ryo, he promised to never get involved with a straight guy again, they’re nothing but trouble. Besides, Eijun isn’t just straight, he also has a son and pretty heavy baggage, Youichi has enough with his own.

To Youichi’s advantage, avoiding them was rather easy. Eijun, having to take care of Eito, was too busy to be seeing that much, and honestly, Youichi was grateful for that. The poor guy has no time for himself, at all… but every little thing that could help Youichi about Eijun, was good.

He knew they had to talk eventually, but alas. Denial was Youichi’s middle name.


 

If he didn’t have so much to do, he’d have gone crazy ages ago.

Mochi was avoiding him, that was pretty obvious, it took no brainer to notice the panic on his face the first time they saw each other after the kiss. It’s been two weeks already. Eijun thought about giving him some space, or something but it was getting ridiculous already.

He’d thought about just wait and then confront him, but Mochi could be sneaky, that’s the very reason why he was trying to come up with a plan to get them to talk, though, he wasn’t sure about what he should say.

Their kiss, the reason behind all the tiptoeing, was mostly something that just happened, maybe they got caught up in the moment, or whatever but it happened and now they have to deal with it. Whether they want it or not. Which in Eijun’s case, he did want it and he hoped Mochi did too.

They were attracted to each other, it was almost palpable in the air whenever they were next to each other. He just didn’t know in what way. Hell, he remembers thinking he wasn’t gay a few months ago. It didn’t matter how much he thought about the topic, he needed to talk to Mochi, or well, it was more like he needed to know what was that he was feeling.


 

He misses Eijun, not because he likes him or whatever but because Eijun is, was, part of his routine. He’s been cooking way too much for himself and that’s what’s keeping him alive every morning because with Eijun’s lunchboxes gone, he now eats the leftovers of whatever he cooks for dinner.

Youichi thinks he’s ready. Ready to talk to Eijun, ready to accept whatever he has to say and everything that comes after that. He’s not ready to continue as friends after they’re done talking so he’ll have to stay away from them for a while, but to talk, he is ready.

And because people always say that the best way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, he finds himself in front of the Sawamura household with a pot of food, enough for three because Youichi is trying to get a much more positive approach and he hopes he doesn’t get kick out of their house before they eat.


 

He’s washing the dishes when there’s a knock on the door, its barely audible and he heard it because right in that moment he finished with the dishes. He dries his hands when Eito screams he’ll open the door so he takes his time.

He can’t see who’s at the door from the kitchen or hear what they’re saying but he does hear Eito rambling happily to someone. He rounds the counter and heads to the door but stops dead in is tracks. He can’t quite believe who just came.

“Mister Kuramochi Youichi,” he mocks.

“Hi,” Mochi answers shyly with a pot on his hands.

Eijun walks the rest of the way to help him and walks back to the kitchen, with Mochi following him close and smiling rather awkwardly all the way.

“Did you guys have dinner already?” he asks and when Eijun turns where he is, now sitting, he notices Eito clinging to Mochi’s legs. He hasn’t seen his son so happy in days and it makes him a bit jealous but he feels the same way now that Mochi is here.

They already had dinner, after all, it’s a little past 8 p.m. regardless, Eito says no. Eijun only gives him his best “dad look” and his son pouts back to the living room to watch tv, leaving them alone in the kitchen.

“So,” Eijun says.


 

“So,” Youichi says back.

“I’ve got beer and snacks, if you feel like it.” Ah, Eijun, always being the bigger man. Youichi knows they’ll have to talk eventually but at least it’s going to be easy with alcohol in their system, so he says yes to that.

They move to the living room where Eito is sprawled all over the couch, so they end up sitting on the floor, the same place they were last time when they kissed. If one of them feels awkward about it, none of them say it.

They finish the first six-pack in no time, Eijun goes to the convenience store next to their building to get more while Youichi looks after Eito who fell asleep an hour or so ago, but when Eijun tried to get him to his room, he woke up and begged them to let them stay there.

It’s an odd thing. Youichi never pictured himself with kids, by the time he figured he was gay, every thought of having kids disappear completely and it’s not even like he thought seriously of it. But now, seeing Eijun with his son and taking care of him, too, makes him reconsider his decision.

Having kids was never part of his plans for the future and it still isn’t, the idea of having them, though, that was different. Maybe he was being influenced by his neighbors or he wanted to get on Eijun’s better side, but he genuinely enjoys the time he spends with Eito.

He was a ball of sunshine, much like his father and always said the craziest and cutest things… like his father. It was like taking care of a mini-Eijun, or at least that’s what Youichi thought he was like.

Today, though, Eito had completely fallen asleep on his lap, that’s why Eijun had to go out. None of them dared to wake him up so Youichi offered to stay. The convenience store wasn’t really far but it was cold, maybe even bordering the below zero temperature, so Youichi was more than happy to stay behind

When Eijun got back, he hadn’t even moved an inch and he was glad because when he saw them both like that, he had the dopiest smile ever.

Youichi thinks he’s already drunk as fuck because he’s remembering all that, that happened just a few minutes ago. With their second six-pack halfway done, he realizes he’s about to go over his limits of beer for a night but with Eito sleeping on his lap and Eijun giggling next to him, he doesn’t really care.

He sighs, the situation seems so impossible, right after his sigh he starts giggling, it sounds stupid because of how drunk he is, but he’s comparing his giggles with Eijun and that’s enough disadvantage for him.

Whatever type of smile Eijun made, was simply glorious. Youichi isn’t sure why he is laughing, he just is. They don’t even know what is it that they’re watching, the tv has been on all the time, first it was a comedy, then a baseball game but after that… he has no idea.

They haven’t turned off the tv because that’s the only thing lighting up the room, Youichi is thankful because, honestly, Eijun is already like the sun, lighting up all the room with his smile, he’s not sure what he’d do with an actual light on.

Eijun looks at him and only then he sobers up enough to notice he’s been staring at him, for quite some time now. Eijun gives him a confused look with a lopsided smile and, and it just… it just comes to him like word vomit.

“I like you!” he practically screams, too late to be embarrassed. Eijun just looks at him with his eyes wide open and his mouth trying to form words. Youichi wants to run away but he still has Eito on his lap, but then he thinks it through and decides to stop running away from his feelings for Eijun, though he’s making it really hard by not saying anything.

“M-me too!” Eijun screams even louder and Youichi smiles.

“I like you, too!!” They both jump when Eito talks. They thought he was sleeping, but they were wrong. Youichi looks at Eijun who looks back.

“It’s not like that, Ei-chan,” Eijun says, completely sobered up.

“Why?” Eito asks.

“We like each other like mommy and daddy used to.” It’s a weird analogy but Youichi thinks it’s appropriate but apparently, Eito doesn’t. after he processed what Eijun said, he started crying, hard. It’s been a couple of minutes and they still can’t say anything else because Eito’s crying won’t let them. Eijun’s tried to calm him down more than once but he doesn’t want to listen.

After another while more, they don’t know what to do, Youichi is new to all this and Eijun seems to have run out of ideas, he doesn’t want to leave things like this, he wants to talk to them but Eijun is desperate and ends up asking Youichi to go back his place. At the end, he doesn’t know what happens.


 

“Ei-chan?” he asks him to no avail. “Ei-chan, please.”

Eito doesn’t respond. He can’t think of anything else but to cradle Eito on his arms and take him to his room, he’ll eventually get tired and maybe then he’ll talk.

It’s been a bit over 20 minutes when Eijun starts to fall asleep with Eito still crying on his arms. He wants to go back to his bed, Eito’s bed is really uncomfortable and it barely holds one of them but he doesn’t want to leave him alone.

When Eito stops heaving, he thinks his son fell asleep, so he tries to go to the kitchen to get  him water but he doesn’t even get up from bed when Eito grabs him by the back of his shirt so hard, he even yelps.

“Ei-chan,” he coughs.

“Daddy,” Eito starts crying again.

“What’s wrong, Ei-chan?”

“Daddy… I like Mochi-san.”

“I like him too, Ei-chan,” it’s not like he can show it, but he is truly happy about that. Eito is the most important person for Eijun and if he likes Mochi, that’s enough for him. “Why did you cry when we said we liked each other?” he doesn’t know if he’s pushing the topic or not but he needs to know, for him and for Mochi.

“I…” he tries, “I don’t want Mochi-san to be with daddy like mommy,” he finally says and Eijun sees white. He wants to ask him why, now he’s desperate, because even if he didn’t notice how strong his feelings were, now he does. And they’re strong enough to try to make this right. And he knows this wasn’t going to be easy.

There’s this part of his mind that’s been thinking of the implications of liking Mochi and Mochi liking him back, or not just that, but dating a man, when you’re already this old and with a kid, plus just divorced, he luckily didn’t end up scarred or traumatized.

He wants to ask Eito for an explanation but he’s crying so much, he can’t do nothing more than try to console him, which actually fails and Eito just cries himself to sleep.


 

An hour or so ago after he went back to his place, he hears a knock on the door and given how late it is, he can only think of one person. He’s right, when he opens the door, Eijun is there, looking down and like he has the weight of the world on his shoulders.

“Hey,” Youichi greets, hurrying Eijun in. He tells him to sit in the only couch he has and makes him tea to help him relax. “How’s Eito?”

“He finally fell asleep… he’s not waking up until tomorrow so we’re good for now.” He smiles sadly and for some reason, Youichi feels this isn’t going to end well. “I really like you,” Eijun says eventually.

Despite the worry, Youichi smiles too. He smiles because he knows Eijun is not toying with him or anything, he really means it. “I like you, too.” He answers back and when Eijun places his mug on the coffee table, he cups his face and kisses him.


 

The kiss is similar to the first one, just their lips touching, trying to convey what they feel for each other. It’s nice and simple. But with the situation at hand they need more… more contact and reassuring and while this isn’t the correct way to do it, right now it’s the best.

Mochi has no trouble deepening their kiss. At first is only a hand on Eijun’s waist, slowly making its way up his back to his nape, while the other one stays on his hip. It’s not only him, though, Eijun’s hands are now around Mochi’s neck completely hugging him and there’s no space between them anymore.

The only sound in the room is their ragged panting and heavy breathing, the couch shifts under their weight and Eijun feels Mochi pushing him back until he’s completely lying on the couch and Mochi between his legs.

The hand that used to be on his hips is now under his shirt, touching his muscles and feeling the sensitive skin.

“H-hey,” Mochi pants, but Eijun just hums. “Let’s take this slowly.” And just as soon as he says the last word, the spell is over.

They sit on the couch again and Eijun straighten his shirt. They don’t say anything for a while but then Moichi breaks the silence.

“What happened with Eito?”

“He doesn’t want us to be together,” Eijun says simply.

“Why?”

“I don’t know.”

“What are you going to do?”

“I don’t know.”

“Eijun,” Mochi finally snaps. “Is it really that hard to decide? You gave your life to a wife that left you and you’re giving the rest to your kid? When are you going to give yourself the love and attention you need? When Eito turns 18? When he leaves for school? When you’re too old to do something?”

“Stop,” he whispers.

“No, I won’t stop. You need to understand you can’t neglect yourself forever-”

“And you think that doing it with you will give me that peace of mind or attention I need?” he scorns.

“That’s not what I mean.”

“That’s exactly how it sounds.”

Mochi doesn’t say anything and Eijun eventually gets up from the couch and walks to the door, but before leaving the apartment he turns around, “Eito will always be the first and most important person to me, if you can’t understand that, there’s nothing I can do.” Mochi doesn’t follows after him.

**

He throws himself on the couch but doesn’t sleep, just stares at the ceiling thinking about Mochi and Eito and what can he do to make this better. He doesn’t think he’s wrong. For a parent, their kids are a priority, over everything else, even themselves, he’s just doing what any caring father would do.

He only gets up when the alarm on his room goes off. The usual routine in the morning is an unconscious and zombie-like one, even for Eito who wakes up by himself. His eyes are red rimmed and puffy but he’s not crying anymore, Eijun will have to think of an excuse to say to his teacher.

They open the door ready to go and see Mochi who is already out and Eijun guesses he’s waiting for them. When Eito sees him, he hides behind Eijun like the first time they met Mochi.

“I can wait,” he says instead of greeting them, but Eijun has no idea what he means so he only looks expressionlessly at him. Mochi gets closer to Eijun and Eito recoils but that doesn’t stop him. “I’ll wait for you. There is no way for me to know what you feel because I obviously don’t have kids or even siblings to understand what you do but I’ll wait for you, no matter how long.”

“Mochi-“

“Don’t say anything, please just let me have this. I really like you and I’m willing to wait for you to accept me or to let me share part of your life. I know that for you he is the first and,” he looks down to where Eito is hiding behind Eijun and just about to cry again, “I understand how much you love him… I love him, too. Please, let me wait.”

Eijun is dumbfounded, he never expected this from Mochi but he’d be lying if he says he’s not happy. He can’t say anything, too amazed to talk so he just smiles and nods. Mochi breathes in, out, and smiles too, wide smile with even his canines showing and damn Eijun loves that smile, but he only gets to see it for a few seconds because when Mochi looks at Eito again the smile is gone and he only excuses himself and leaves to work.

Eijun sighs and kneels in front of Eito to hug him as hard as he can until his son complains about not being able to breathe.

It’s okay, this is okay. Eijun can wait too.