Perhaps he should have thought better of ignoring his cousin. Perhaps he should have taken Shisui's drunken confession with a bit more grace. Perhaps, perhaps he shouldn't have chuckled weakly and walked away from Shisui and his empty promises.
Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps. But he hadn't done any of those things.
He's walking away before he can think about it, too sure that Shisui's just really, really drunk. That this is just a silly mistake brought on through too much whiskey.
Karaoke night at the local pub is loud; laughing, drunken businessmen serenading them with awful renditions of 90's pop hits. The place smells worse than it does on most nights, the usual medley of vodka and bile mixing with the bitter, sour scent of stale sweat. It's crowded, so he has to shove through the crowd, brushing past girls in skimpy tops and overweight men hoping to get lucky.
Itachi wishes that he hadn't come, wishes that he'd just stayed behind in his empty apartment and eaten his leftover curry while watching a rerun of Hell's Kitchen. Wishes he hadn't given in to Shisui's cajoling, because even the one shot of vodka churns and sloshes about in his stomach.
The door is ahead of him, looming like the gates of Valhalla with promises of fresh, cool air, and a lack of lovestruck, inebriated cousins. He thinks Oh thank god, right before drunken businessman number 3 is knocked off the stage, static feedback grating against his ears as the mic is stolen. The pub is fading to abrupt silence while the instrumental of Lollipop plays on, and he thinks, no no no no.
His stomach sinks. He won't turn around. He won't, he won't, he won't-
"We should be lovers..."
Shisui is flushed, pink cheeked and bleary-eyed, lolling about the stage and grinning out across the crowd. His smile is sweet, earnest enough that Itachi feels affection curl through him unwittingly. Soft and warm, curling up his spine to wrap it's way around his heart.
Everything about this moment is cliched, banality glimmering back at him from every dusty corner, in every curious eye trained on his cousin, in the fact that the words we can't do that curls up his throat to lick at his teeth, desperate to be let loose. Cliched and ridiculous because this takes him back to summer nights when his mother sat them down with a copy of Moulin Rouge, told them to behave while she and his father were out. How Shisui had sung Ewan McGregor's lines solo for weeks until Itachi had finally given in and played along.
"We should be lovers! And that's a fact."
Shisui's grin is silly. His eyes are unfocused. They're surrounded on all sides by strangers and colleagues alike, and Shisui is singing a love song to the beat of an utterly filthy, innuendo ridden rap song.
"We could steal time... Just for one day."
It's ridiculous and silly and childish for his heart to tremble in his chest when Shisui drops the microphone and staggers off the stage- fumbles his way to where Itachi is standing, shell-shocked. Ridiculous that he lets out a light gasp when Shisui feathers light kisses along his jaw, purrs, "We could be heroes..." into his ear, like a secret.
The sounds of the pub pick back up, someone picking the microphone off the floor to finish off the round of Lollipop, a woman shrieking with inebriated laughter. The volume picks right back up, so no one hears when Itachi leans in and whispers the words against Shisui's temple, just as monotonous as he had when he was a kid- save the faintest hint of warmth.
"How wonderful life is," he whispers, curling an affectionate hand over the curve of Shisui's cheek, "Now you're in the world."