Kaiba entered his bedroom and did a double-take. He blinked twice, about-faced, and marched back into the hallway. After the door swung shut behind him, he stared at painting hanging on the opposite wall.
He was hallucinating. It was the only explanation.
Mokuba had warned against pulling two all-nighters in a row. But market forces waited for no man to get a full eight-hour rest. Kaiba was successful because he knew when to strike while the iron was hot and acted accordingly. But now that the work was done, he wanted nothing more than fall into bed and sleep for a week.
The hallucination was preventing him from doing just that. While the amount of caffeine consumed over the last 68 hours explained why he was hallucinating, it didn’t explain why his brain had conjured that.
Maybe it was gone now. He returned to the bedroom. Nope, the hallucination remained.
“Heya, Kaiba,” greeted a very real and very naked Jounouchi Katsuya sprawled across his king-sized bed. “Wow, you look like shit.”
Unable to stop himself, Kaiba’s gaze moved from the bare feet, up the toned muscles of Jounouchi’s calf, past the knobby knees, up to the sculpted thighs… His eyes snapped to the ceiling, intent on admiring the crown molding.
“Work, ” Kaiba replied. His voice sounded too thin and high-pitched, as if he couldn’t get enough air into his lungs.
Maybe he hadn’t gone home. Maybe he had fallen asleep at the office and was having some bizarre nightmare/wet dream. In that case, he hoped Mokuba or Isono came along soon to wake him up. He reached over and pinched himself.
“You work too hard,” said Jounouchi, infuriatingly calm— as if he wasn’t sitting on Kaiba’s bed in his birthday suit.
“You don’t work hard enough,” he fired back on auto-pilot.
Surreal: it was the only fitting description for this situation. No, “absurd” worked nicely too.
Lowering his gaze and keeping it firmly affixed above Jounouchi’s shoulders, he opened his mouth to ask a question. At first, no sound, not even a squeak, escaped— probably because his body forgot how to produce saliva. He swallowed and tried again. “Is there a reason you’re naked in my bed?”
Jounouchi rubbed the back of his head, finally having the decency to look sheepish. “Uh, surprise, I’m here to seduce you?”
Kaiba stared— still not allowing his eyes to wander south of the collarbone. Shit, he’d have to keep north of the collarbone he now wanted to nibble on. Hell, now the tendons of Jounouchi’s neck was causing similar issues.
Jounouchi stared back with his bright amber eyes. “Shit, Kaiba, did I break that giant brain of yours?”
“Cuz I like you, jerkface!” Jounouchi huffed and blew some stray bangs out of his eyes.
“I can’t deal with this right now. I need to lie down,” he muttered to himself in a daze.
Stumbling in the general direction of the bed, Kaiba banged his knees against the frame. Jounouchi thankfully had the good sense to roll aside and make room. Otherwise, Kaiba would probably be burying his face in something other than his mattress.
“You can’t sleep in your suit like that.” Jounouchi’s voice came from above and somewhere to the left. He hadn’t gotten out of the bed. It was okay. The bed was big enough for the two of them.
Dismayed by his own thoughts, Kaiba grunted. Several moments later, he crawled up toward a pillow and rolled onto his side, turning his back to the probably-still-naked-Jounouchi. Between his sleep deprivation and the dim room, the drowsy presleep stage found him immediately. He welcomed it.
“Should I go?” Jounouchi sounded far away.
Slowly, Kaiba turned to look at the other man over his shoulder. Uncertainty painted Jounouchi’s face, even his body seemed to have shrunk. Kaiba’s eyelids drooped as he said, “Do whatever you want. You always do.”
“You’re not kicking me out?” Some confidence crept back into Jounouchi’s voice.
“No.” Throwing Jounouchi out now would require touching him. “But we’re talking about this in the morning.”
The lamp on the nightstand switched off, plunging the room into darkness. Then the mattress shifted as Jounouchi wiggled under the duvet.
Just before Kaiba slipped under the sandman’s spell, he murmured, “And if you try to take advantage of me, I will hang you by your entrails.”
A soft chuckle and a caress against his cheek following Kaiba into his dreams.