It didn't take long for Atsuro to realize that he shouldn't watch Sakuya sing while he was trying to play. One or two nasty stumbles on his guitar earned him enough dirty looks from the rest of Lucifer that he burned the lesson into his mind. He was already the weakest member in terms of technique and experience; he didn't need to compound the problem by distracting himself.
Because Sakuya was definitely distracting at the best of times, and when he sang he was downright entrancing. Even in practice sessions in the well-lit studio, there was something almost magical about him. On stage in a live performance, with the fans screaming and cheering and the band playing its heart out, Sakuya truly seemed to come alive with energy.
That would have been bad enough, but it was... damn it, it was the way the man practically made love to his mic that made Atsuro forget what he was supposed to be doing and just stare. Sakuya would cradle the base in his hands like something precious, and croon into it with his lips just a breath away from the surface, a lover teasing his partner with the promise of something he might not deliver.
It didn't help that his voice was pure sex, the sort of husky sound that belonged in the bedroom - or in a porno. Atsuro couldn't avoid listening to his singing, but he could at least not make it worse by watching Sakuya as well as listening to him.
He asked Towa about it, late at night after a practice session that had gone particularly badly for him. "Is it just me?" he wanted to know, half desperate. "I mean, am I imagining it? Once I look at him, it's like I can't look away, and then I'm screwed because I'm not paying attention to my playing, just to him."
"It's not just you," Towa said, a wistful smile playing over his lips. "Sakuya may claim not to care about the band or the music, but when he sings he puts his whole soul into it. He can't seem to help it, and it is hypnotic. Isn't that the reason we formed the band in the first place, because we all wanted to keep playing with that voice?"
Atsuro bit his lip. He didn't think he was quite conveying the nature of his problem to the older man, but then again he was pretty sure that explaining further would make him sound incredibly gay. It was one thing to fall in love with Sakuya's talent, any musician would do that. It was another thing entirely to find yourself getting hard while watching your lead singer go down on his mic.
He strengthened his resolve not to look at anything but his guitar, and for a while that dealt with the problem. Sakuya's voice still resonated straight through him, but that only spurred him to play even better, so that his playing wasn't holding back that phenomenal potential. The others teased him a bit about 'stage fright', but Atsuro just let the ribbing slide off his back without ruffling him. If they knew the truth, it would be so much worse.
Eventually he was able to look up, out at the audience or over at the other band members, which certainly made it easier to move with the flow of the music and join Yuki and Towa in jamming riffs off each other. Being able to see the audience reaction made his heart pound in time with the music as he soaked up the energy and excitement, and improved his playing all the more.
It was the reopening concert for the Cradle that tripped him up. They were all so hyper, ecstatic to see the live house that was their birthplace open for business again, that everyone but Santa was fairly bouncing around the stage. Atsuro was playing back to back with Yuki, sweat pouring over his body and his fingers flying over the strings, when he made the mistake of looking up just at the moment that Sakuya turned in his direction.
Atsuro's throat went dry, and he was caught before he even realized what had happened. Sakuya's vivid blue eyes were half closed as he threw himself into the song, and the look on his face was almost orgasmic. Then he turned again, enough so that Atsuro's view of his mouth wasn't blocked by the mic, and Atsuro's heart went into double time.
They swung into the last song they'd planned, Datenshi Blue, and the fans went wild. Vaguely Atsuro was aware that Yuki had moved away to jam with Towa instead, leaving him with nothing to distract him from Sakuya. That tiny coherent part of his mind cringed, waiting for him to start making mistakes, ruining the amazing energy that had run through this whole concert.
Instead all the gruelling hours he'd spent practicing finally paid off. His fingers knew the music even without instruction from his brain, flying over the strings in perfect counterpoint to Yuki's melody. He could have played this song in his sleep - probably had. With a little thrill Atsuro realized he didn't need to feel guilt or fear because of his obsession, and he truly let himself go for the first time.
Everyone talked about Sakuya's eyes, but Atsuro had always thought his most attractive feature was his impossibly perfect mouth. His lips were full but firm, his teeth flashed white even under the coloured stage lights, and as he sang he shaped the words with all the care of an artist sculpting a masterpiece.
"We are all half angel and half devil, with our hysteric lips drenched in diamonds of sin..."
The opening lyrics resonated with Atsuro more than ever before. Sakuya was surely an angel and a devil, and it was his lips Atsuro couldn't look away from. Sakuya was being even worse than usual about going down on the mic, and as always it went straight to Atsuro's cock. Already worked up from the thrill of playing, in seconds he was so hard he was dizzy.
Every time Sakuya ghosted his mouth just above the surface of the mic, Atsuro's too-vivid imagination imagined him doing the same thing to Atsuro's cock instead. When he licked his lips at the end of the verse Atsuro's eyes tracked the slide of Sakuya's tongue over the man's full bottom lip. Then Sakuya threw his head back and purred out the chorus, and Atsuro whimpered helplessly.
The drums pounded through him like a second heartbeat, and the notes of the bass and other guitar prickled over his nerves like fingers dancing on his skin. He wasn't even aware of what he was playing anymore, just that it fit perfectly with the rest of the band in a way he'd never felt before. Atsuro gasped for air, but the heat of the stage lights and too many bodies in the tight space had stolen all the oxygen. The only thing left to breathe was the music itself. Every note wound him tighter, pushing him up and up in a dizzying spiral until he thought he could reach out and touch the sun.
Then Sakuya turned and looked right at him, and Atsuro forgot about breathing entirely. There was no mistake, Sakuya was singing at him. He never did that, reserving his attention for the audience, trusting his backup to do their jobs without any prompting from him. The only times he'd ever glanced at Atsuro before were those times when Atsuro had screwed up.
Sakuya wasn't upset with him now, and it was more than just a glance. The heat in his eyes was so intense they looked like blue flames half hidden by his dark lashes, the same 'fallen angel blue' from the song. They were in the bridge, the guitars and bass duelling for dominance in a three-way struggle, freeing Sakuya from singing for a moment. He licked his lips again, slower this time, drawing the motion out.
Gods, was he doing it on purpose? Did he know? Atsuro stared back at him, unable to look away or do anything to hide his reaction, and Sakuya's lips curved in a satisfied smile that made Atsuro's leather pants go from tight to painfully tight.
The bridge wailed to an end, and Sakuya returned his attention to the audience as he launched into the last chorus. The hint of a smile remained, and Atsuro swore he could feel Sakuya's breath gusting over his cock instead of the mic.
He wasn't sure if he remembered to join the others in singing the harmony to the chorus or not. He wasn't sure it mattered. The music was already too perfect to bear, the energy higher than it had ever been before, and he thought he might die if it got any better.
Then it did get better, as everything came together on the last line and they slammed into the downward slide of the last few notes. Atsuro was certain his heart had stopped, the drums taking over entirely, as if he was made of the music instead of flesh and blood. Forget about sex, this was the ultimate possible climax.
It was over too soon, too abruptly. The fans went mad, screaming and shouting louder than he'd ever heard before, though the crowd was far from the largest they'd ever drawn. Atsuro was left panting for air, feeling at once drained and energized, his whole body trembling.
He moved to join the others leaving the stage area, and flushed hotly as he realized the inside of his pants was sticky. Maybe it hadn't been such a figurative climax after all. Thank the gods the leather wouldn't show the wetness or stain.
Someone pounced on him, nearly knocking him over. "You!" Santa crowed, knuckling the top of Atsuro's head. "What was that all about, huh?"
"What was... what?" A chill ran down his spine. Gods, had they all realized what an idiot he'd been making of himself? He was sure he hadn't made a mistake in his playing this time.
"I think that may be the best I've ever heard you play," Towa said, smiling gently at him. "You've improved by leaps and bounds, but that was amazing."
"You were totally on fire," Santa agreed, slinging his arm over Atsuro's shoulder and grinning.
"I could hardly keep up with you," Yuki chuckled. "Play like that every time and we'll be international stars before you can say 'Lucifer'."
"Every time?" Atsuro barely stifled a groan at the thought. Watch Sakuya sing every time they played? The whole way through every concert? Forget about just embarrassing himself, he'd die of sensation overload.
"Good work," Sakuya said, the words soft but sincere. Atsuro blinked, astonished. "Definitely keep it up."
Then he turned away and moved out into the crowd, greeting the fans and signing autographs. Atsuro watched him go, wondering again if Sakuya actually realized what he was doing to Atsuro, or if the older man only knew that Atsuro had played well for some reason tonight.
Glancing back over his shoulder briefly, Sakuya smirked at him, the same satisfied smile that had gotten him so worked up in the first place. This time Atsuro didn't manage to stop the tiny moan that escaped him, and he knew he would do anything to see that smile directed at him again.
At least when the overload killed him, he would die playing and with the image of Sakuya's lips as the last thing he saw.