Chapter 1: "Nowaki"
How can I forget him now? Why did I lie to him? He believes I did it to help him, to make him live his dream of being with Takahiro but it's not true. I wanted him to feel me, to desire me, to love me…I have dreamed about how it would feel to be his, not his friend, but his lover. I wanted his lips against mine. I wanted his hands on me. It was only a few moments, his body hard against mine, the pain, the pleasure…if only he had said my name, at least once, it would have been perfect. But it was Takahiro he was thinking of, it was him he was imagining behind that blindfold, not me. Now I can only remember the way his hands felt on my skin, so cold…Akihiko…
His hands shook as he closed the diary, putting it back on the shelf behind the book of literary theory where he had found it while cleaning. He continued dusting the shelf, ignoring the cold sensation creeping up on his chest and the way it hurt as he took deep breaths. But above all, he ignored the way his heart was breaking.
He really shouldn't have been that surprised; Akihiko had been in Hiroki's life first and even now that man was always present in some way. He knew it was stupid to be upset by some words written more than six years ago but he couldn't help it, especially because they were about Akihiko. He knew Hiroki had been in love with Akihiko and he had started their relationship knowing who he was competing against. Hiroki had accepted him, given him the change to love him but had never told him of this, of what he had done. Now he knew the extent of Hiroki's love for Akihiko and it hurt. He wasn't hurt because Hiroki had done that. No, he was hurt because Hiroki had never done anything of such magnitude for him.
He was trying to compete with the past again, wasn't he?
Why couldn't he be content with what Hiroki gave him? He should have felt lucky for the opportunity to be with the person he loved, and yet his heart was breaking. He had spent the last six years waiting for something that was never going to happen. Hiroki would never love him, at least not in the way he loved him.
Taking a seat on the couch, Nowaki looked around their tiny apartment. It was filled with books and Hiroki's things. Yes, he was the one who had moved in, but there was nothing of him on sight. He turned to the bookshelf and he saw them. Akihiko's novels. They had bothered him at first, the way Hiroki kept them as prized possessions but as time passed he had accepted them because accepting them was accepting Hiroki and everything that he was. But they now seemed to be there to remind him of what he would never accomplish.
He would never be part of Hiroki's life. He would never be able to completely possess Hiroki.
As he licked his lips to get some feeling back into them he was reminded of Hiroki's adamant rule of not being touched. Two days ago, the night they had last been together, Nowaki had taken Hiroki on the floor of their living room. It hadn't been easy; Hiroki had fought him at first, telling him he didn't want to and had pushed him away. But he already knew Hiroki did the same thing every time and that with a little coaxing he was able to get him to give in. He was still wearing his pants around his knees and Hiroki was still wearing his unbuttoned shirt. He always wondered why they never took them off completely, but he never attempted to because he was afraid that if he did, Hiroki would lose his interest in the middle of the whole thing.
His thrusts were quick and shallow as he gripped Hiroki's hips. His lover was on his knees and forearms, pushing slightly back to meet each one of his thrusts. He leaned forward to place kisses on his exposed shoulders and between them, tasting sweat and that particular taste that defined Hiroki, a taste he knew he would never get tired of. He tried to lace his fingers with those of Hiroki but the professor moved his hand away, grabbing what he could of the carpet to hold on. He still continued raining kisses where he could, as his other hand reached around the front of Hiroki's hips to find his cock hard and leaking beads of moisture.
He watched as Hiroki arched his back and pushed back harder against him, a small grunt escaping his lips. That was another thing Nowaki didn't understand. Hiroki tried so hard to stifle the sounds he made while they did this as if it was a bad thing. He continued his stroking while he increased the depth and speed of his thrusts and he felt as Hiroki's abdominal muscles tensed with each push of his hips. He watched captivated as Hiroki's body tensed before shuddering and letting a moan escape his lips. With the way Hiroki tightened around him, it only took a couple of thrusts before he climaxed as well.
He lay on top of his lover as they tried to catch their breath, and after a moment, he brushed his lips along his lover's cheek -- once, twice, before Hiroki pushed him away.
"Ugh stop it," the professor said and Nowaki couldn't help but smile.
"But you're so cute right now Hiro-san," he whispered as he lowered his lips for another kiss but Hiroki pushed him away again. Nowaki chuckled and tried again, enjoying how cute his lover looked when annoyed. He finally withdrew from Hiroki's body and the professor quickly sat and reached for his discarded pants.
"Brat. I still have tomorrow's class to plan and you already made me waste my time," Hiroki grumbled.
Nowaki sat behind him, "But it was fun Hiro-san. You liked it," he teased with a soft smile and aimed for another kiss but Hiroki moved away.
There was a small struggle until Hiroki pushed his elbow back and stood up, leaving quickly and with angry words escaping his lips. He didn't look back so he didn't notice Nowaki reaching up to touch his lips to find a spot of blood. He had split his lower lip and it stung as he cleaned the blood away.
As he licked his lips again he could still feel the slight sting of the small cut.
I wanted his lips against mine.
Nowaki stared at Akihiko's books again. Hiroki pushed him away every time he wanted to touch him; he fought him every time he got close and yet…
I wanted his lips against mine.
Akihiko's lips. Not his.
But he couldn't voice his concerns to Hiroki. His lover was always reminding him of their age difference and of the many different things that were separating them. Hiroki would call him a child and that four year difference would again wedge itself between them. He had once thought their age could cause them trouble, that's why he had gone to study abroad. Not because he thought he was too young for Hiroki, but because he wanted to be someone his lover could be proud of.
He had returned one year later and after the misunderstanding about him leaving had been cleared, he had thought they would be fine. One afternoon, returning from work he found Akihiko on the doorstep talking to Hiroki. He watched from down the hallway as Akihiko spoke before reaching out to ruffle his lover's hair. Hiroki looked like he didn't want the touch but made no attempt to move away and Akihiko smiled before turning to leave.
Hiroki always pushed him away when he wanted to hug him or give him a kiss while they were out grocery shopping. In the mornings whenever he reached to kiss him, Hiroki would get annoyed and accuse him of making him late for work.
I wanted his hands on me.
Akihiko's hands. Not his. Never his.
Standing up he walked to the bookshelf again, taking out the book of literary theory to reach for the diary again. It was wrong, this was Hiroki's personal writing and he had no right to be reading it, but he wanted, needed to know if he was included in this at least. He searched for the dates around the time he had met Hiroki, during the time he had left to study abroad but there was nothing. Hiroki talked of his classes, of Akihiko's novels, even of his boss but not of him.
Later, some time after he had started making dinner, Hiroki came home. He usually greeted his lover with a kiss and a hug that was promptly rejected but today he simply turned and forced a smile on his lips.
"Welcome home, Hiro-san. How was your day?" he asked before turning back to cutting the vegetables.
There was a moment of silence before Hiroki began talking about his students and the way they wasted their time on their phones and how nobody paid attention to him. Nowaki smiled. He liked hearing Hiroki speak, it didn't matter that most of his words were always filled with annoyance either at his students or at him. He couldn't help being quiet during dinner, he couldn't get what he had read out of his mind. For a moment he thought about telling Hiroki, to question him about their relationship but when he turned to look at his lover, the professor was eating with a frown on his face. He was still in a bad mood and he knew that when Hiroki was in a bad mood all he could expect were shouts and arguments.
As he washed the dishes his mind kept replaying him the words he had read in the diary. He felt sad. Lost. Cheated. What did Akihiko have that he didn't? Couldn't Hiroki see how much he loved him? But Hiroki probably didn't see him like a lover. He was a pest, someone that had followed him around like a puppy since the start, bothering him and taking up his time. Now he was just a fuck buddy and nothing more. Maybe he wasn't even that. Maybe Hiroki felt sorry for him and was just pretending. Perhaps that's why he was so reluctant to be touched.
Yet, despite knowing all that, he wanted to be with Hiroki that night. He had already decided what he was going to do and he knew this would be their last night together. He would leave the next day. He would free Hiroki of his burden even if it meant he would be unhappy for the rest of his life.
Hiroki fought him, pushing his hands away and calling him a pervert when he tried to move his hand down his pants. But Nowaki pushed until Hiroki was accepting his kisses between protests and pushing his hips against his hand. He unbuttoned his shirt, bringing his other hand up to pinch and roll his lover's nipples between his fingers. Hiroki still fought him but his movements were weak now and his words were ending in gasps and soft moans. Nowaki finally slid his pants off, pushing him onto the bed and kissing him before lowering his lips to his chest.
He didn't listen, his lips busy with his lover's skin, caressing with lips and tongue and teeth. Kissing. Tasting. Memorizing. By the time he got to his lover's erection, Hiroki was holding on to the sheets beside his head, his eyes closed even as he still told him to stop. But his protests were weak, accompanied by small sounds of pleasure before they were stifled. When he reached for the bottle of lubricant on the nightstand, Hiroki turned around on his stomach. Nowaki rolled his lover's shirt upward to kiss his back while he prepared him.
There was always a small sound of pain when he pushed inside him but he always made sure to stay still until his lover had adjusted. He lifted Hiroki's hips, his ass in the air and his face pressed against the bed. He began a slow pace, enjoying the heat around him and the sensation of being with the one he loved. He wished he could see his lover's face, but Hiroki seemed to prefer this position. He thought of the diary again. Was Hiroki imagining Akihiko? Was that the reason he preferred to be taken this way, so he wouldn't see his face? Was that the reason he was rarely allowed to talk during these moments?
"Hiroki-san," he whispered, leaning forward. "Hiroki-san."
"S-shut up," he heard Hiroki groan.
Was he ruining the fantasy by talking? He felt the sting of tears in his eyes and he bowed his head, resting his forehead between his lover's shoulder blades as he kept thrusting, his hand already moving between Hiroki's legs. He was doing what Hiroki had done for Akihiko, wasn't he? When he felt it was safe to talk again without giving away his sadness he moved until he was able to kiss Hiroki's cheek. He wanted to see his face in pleasure even if it was just for a moment.
"Hiro-san," he couldn't help but whisper, just to say his name.
"Shut up you idiot! Shut-"
…if only he had said my name, at least once, it would have been perfect.
"I love you, Hiro-san." He felt his lover stiffen and grunt, arching his back and pushing his hips back one last time before he collapsed on the bed with a relieved moan on his lips. Nowaki came a moment later even as he wanted to cry at the same time.
Hiroki fumbled with the covers as they finally settled on the bed. Nowaki watched as Hiroki lay on his side facing him but there was distance between them. One of his lover's hands was resting on the pillow and he reached to touch it. It was immediately pulled away beneath the covers with an angry growl. Nowaki smiled, endeared by the professor even as his chest hurt and his eyes filled with tears.
The next morning he cooked breakfast, and when Hiroki came out of the room complaining about not being woken up in time, he walked toward him and kissed him. His lover stepped back, moving away and wiping his mouth with his sleeve.
"What's the matter with you? I need to go to the university," Hiroki exclaimed, walking toward the sofa to get his briefcase.
"Hiro-san…" his voice trailed off. He knew he was stalling, waiting for him to say something, anything to make him stay. But there was only silence and a scowl.
"I love you Hiro-san," he whispered again but Hiroki was already walking and leaving without looking back.
Packing was easy, he didn't have a lot of belongings and most of them were in boxes. The only thing he wasn't able to leave behind was the picture that he had placed on the refrigerator's door. It was a picture of him and Hiroki on the living room. He had used the timer on the camera and had promptly hugged the professor only to be yelled at. The final result had been a picture of him reaching for a kiss and a Hiroki with a scowl on his face.
"You really are cute, Hiro-san," he whispered to the empty apartment.
It was raining as he made his way down the street. A moment later his vision blurred and he felt hot trails down his cheeks. He kept on walking. It was the rain. He wasn't crying. That would only prove he was the child Hiroki thought he was. It was the rain, it had to be.
Chapter 2: Hiroki
With Nowaki gone Hiroki must decide whether his pride is more important than love.
When he opened the door to the apartment he immediately knew something was wrong. There was no one to say 'welcome home' or hug him without his permission. Instead he was met with silence. Closing the door, he took his gloves and scarf off, placing them on the sofa before unbuttoning his jacket.
"Nowaki?" he called softly but nobody answered. He checked the bathroom, cautious since he knew Nowaki had been trying to get him to take a bath with him in the last few days. This could very well be a trap and he was not in the mood for games.
But all he found was an empty bathroom. The bed was made and the small piece of paper in the middle of it caught his attention. Something lurched in his stomach and he stood at the end of the bed, somewhat afraid of reaching for it. Finally picking it up, he carefully unfolded the note and read what it said.
Last time I left you were angry at me for not telling you. I don't want you getting mad at me, so I wanted to let you know I left the apartment. I don't want to keep bothering you with my presence and I know you sometimes don't want to see me when you get home. This way you'll be free of me and you can be happy. If you are happy, I am happy. I already miss you Hiro-san and I will love you forever.
He should have felt relief at the news; he didn't have to suffer the man's attentions anymore. He was free now.
Free to be unhappy.
He sat on the bed feeling the weight of the letter's words on his shoulders. He clutched the piece of paper in his hand against his chest, and for a horrifying moment he felt the burning sensation in his eyes that could only mean one thing. But he manage to hold back the tears, he wouldn't cry for that idiot.
But as much as he tried to hold the tears inside, he finally felt one trail down his cheek. It only took one before the others came down without him being able to stop them and he doubled over as his shoulders sagged and shook with every sob.
This was the reason he had refused Nowaki's advances in the beginning. He had never wanted to feel this again, this heartbreak over someone. First Akihiko…his childhood friend whom he had loved for years and the person he had sacrificed his dignity for. And all for just for a few moments together. He closed his eyes as new sobs raked his body. He didn't cry because he still pined after his friend; on the contrary, he felt he had finally gotten over it. He cried because he still couldn't bring himself to believe he had actually done that. How stupid had he been to think Akihiko would love him for doing something like that. His friend had only wanted Takahiro and he had taken advantage of his friend's desperation. He had used Akihiko's longing to experience a few moments of pleasure with him and yet…what had that left him? Nothing but feelings of shame and sadness, a pride lost and a shattered dignity. Akihiko had gone back to his life, never mentioning that again, and he had been left feeling cheap and lost.
And then…Nowaki had stumbled and wormed his way into his life without any warning. He didn't understand what a boy like Nowaki had seen in him, someone with such a bad temper and little patience. Nowaki was the opposite; calm and sweet. Too sweet. He lay down on his side on the bed; the note still clutched to his chest.
It was difficult for him to swallow his pride and admit when he was wrong, but more than that, it was hard for him to talk about his feelings. The reason? He was afraid. He would never admit it, especially to Nowaki, but he was terrified of what he felt. He didn't want to be seen as clingy for fear of being pushed away. It was one of the reasons he disliked being touched by the boy. He was afraid of getting used to the simple hugs and touches and miss them the day they stopped. It seemed like the time had come.
There was no Nowaki to welcome him home. There was no Nowaki to pull him into bear hugs that felt suffocating but that were addicting at the same time. There was no Nowaki to kiss him or look at him with a soft smile on his lips. There was no more Nowaki.
"Idiot," he whispered and he did his best to ignore the way his voice broke as more tears spilled down his cheeks.
Later as he ate dinner he kept wishing he could hear Nowaki's voice telling him about his day at the hospital or asking him about his day at the university. He felt a stab of guilt as he remembered the way he usually answered Nowaki's questions; always in angry words. He looked down at the food on his plate, trying to imagine Nowaki on the chair in front of him. He stood up suddenly, throwing away the food in the garbage and getting a drink from the refrigerator.
He could do this. He had lived alone for many years before Nowaki had come into his life. He could do it again. But as he sat on the sofa of his living room, he felt the emptiness that surrounded him. He was probably just used to the boy's presence. He would get used to living alone again.
He heard his cell phone ring and he scrambled to get it, flipping it open and taking it to his ear without checking the name on the screen.
"Yes?" Please be Nowaki.
"Ah Hiroki, I'm glad I caught you."
"Akihiko…" he couldn't help the disappointment in his voice.
"Don't sound so happy to hear me," he heard his friend say dryly.
"I had a bad day at the university," he said as he slid off the sofa onto the floor. Lifting his knees up, he leaned forward to rest his forehead on them. "Did you need anything?"
"Ah yes. Could you read my latest manuscript? The deadline is next week…" Hiroki couldn't concentrate on what his friend was saying, but he still said yes and a moment later his friend was saying goodbye, telling him he would meet him at the university the next day.
That night he tossed and turned in bed; not even the three cups of tea had managed to relax him enough to help him sleep. He was laying on his stomach, looking at the light coming from the alarm clock on the nightstand beside the bed.
Was Nowaki working his night shift at the hospital? Was Nowaki thinking of him? He missed him. He missed him terribly. His pride wouldn't even let him voice this thought out loud, but in his mind, Nowaki's name was being said like a mantra.
Hiro-san...I love you, Hiro san.
He closed his eyes as a tear trailed down his cheek. He wanted to hear his voice and yet, how often had he told Nowaki to shut up, to stop saying all those embarrassing things about love? Too many times.
One of the reasons he didn't like Nowaki telling him all those sweet words was because every time his lover said he loved him, he felt he was going to break down and tell him about his own feelings. He was going to fall apart and confess how every word Nowaki said made him happy and he wouldn't be able to hide how much he loved him.
Even when they were having sex, he was afraid of opening his mouth and giving himself away. He had always wanted to see Nowaki's face in pleasure but he was afraid of what his own face would reveal. In those moments of pleasure he wouldn't be able to hold back and his love would show clear on his face, and it wouldn't take long before he started babbling all those sweet words he hated and criticized even though he yearned for them every day. It was because of that reason that he fought Nowaki every time the boy tried to touch him. But his struggles were fake; always moving in a way to get touched even while his mouth lied and said he didn't want it.
He just wasn't used to being loved so completely and selflessly like Nowaki loved him. His pride and fear didn't let him enjoy it. But hadn't he wished for this with Akihiko? His friend had never looked at him like Nowaki had. And now he could say without doubt that while he had loved Akihiko at one point of his life, his heart belonged to Nowaki now.
"Nowaki," he whispered into the empty room, the hot trails of tears not stopping. He was too late. He had never been kind to Nowaki who had given him everything good he had in his life. What use was it now to admit his feelings?
He closed his eyes as he tried to replay the day before in his mind. He had come home in a bad mood, desperate for a kiss and a hug from Nowaki. Even while he never admitted it, those kisses and hugs drove the bad memories of the day away. But when he had opened the door of the apartment, Nowaki had only smiled at him and gone back to cooking.
He opened his eyes. Had Nowaki already decided to leave him by then? Was that why the boy had kissed him and touched him so desperately? And what had he done? He had called him an idiot and told him to shut up…
He buried his face on the pillow, his shoulders shaking with sobs. Nowaki had done the correct thing in leaving him. He didn't deserve Nowaki's love. Nowaki deserved someone who could love him without fears. Someone different from him.
The days passed slowly. The semester ended and he immersed himself in his research, losing track of time and everything else in hope he would forget. He wanted to forget how empty his apartment felt and the silence that seemed to accompany him reminding him how alone he truly was.
He had gone to that coffee shop in front of the flower shop where Nowaki worked. He had remained hidden; promising himself that after making sure the boy was well, he would leave. He watched as Nowaki talked and smiled with two girls who were obviously flirting with him. But he had no right to feel jealous. Nowaki was free. Nowaki had wanted to be free of him and he would respect that. He was willing to suffer in loneliness if the boy was happy.
Days and nights passed, his mind becoming numb to everything else but work. Another semester had started and with it another set of students who disliked him for his bad temper. His nights were often spent in bed without any sleep. He missed the way Nowaki used to hold him. He had even placed a big pillow behind him but the pillow wasn't warm. The pillow wasn't able to hold him or whisper those three little words he missed the most.
The date he feared and wished to avoid had finally come. Valentine's Day. He was forced to see as some of his students exchanged gifts and couples kiss while they thought no one was looking. Even Miyagi had received a visit from that boy that always seemed to want to murder him with his eyes. He had gone home early, doing his best to ignore the hear-shaped balloons that were everywhere on the streets and the couples that walked hand in hand, giggling and whispering.
It was only when he tried opening the door of his apartment that he realized his vision had blurred and that tears were running down his cheeks.
"I can't do this," he whispered to himself as he finally entered his apartment. "I can't do this anymore."
He couldn't continue like this. He didn't want to. He wanted Nowaki back.
"I want…I want…" his voice trailed off as he stood in the middle of the living room, his hands covering his face. "I want Nowaki back."
He didn't stop to think what he was doing, he didn't want to give himself time to get afraid and back down. He was going to do this. He was going to get Nowaki back. He took the phone, flipping through the yellow pages until he found the number. It seemed like an eternity until the person on the other line answered.
This is Genesis's Flower Shop, how may I help you?
"…I want to send a bouquet of red roses," he said, his voice trembling. With fear, with happiness.
Will there be a message?
"Yes. 'I know I don't deserve it but would you have dinner with me tonight at 7 o'clock at the same restaurant? I'll wait for you. If you don't come, I'll understand'."
"No, thank you."
The name of the recipient?
Chapter 3: Aftermath
Nowaki and Hiroki meet at their usual restaurant, but is it a simple meeting, a date, or the end?
He looked at his reflection in the mirror. He had ironed his black dress shirt until no creases remained that it still felt warm against his skin. He fixed his maroon colored tie around the collar of his shirt, and he fumbled with it until it was perfectly in place. Taking the bottle of hair gel off the sink he squeezed it until some of the thick substance was coating his hand. He grimaced as he rubbed his hands before pulling his hair back off his face. He wanted to be presentable and this was the way to go. Right?
He stared back at his reflection and his face contorted again in disgust. What was he doing? He looked ridiculous with his hair like that. He tried again to style it but he had used too much gel and since it was already drying his hair was sticking out the more he moved it. Feeling a moment of panic he considered taking another shower to get rid of it but looking at the clock he decided against it. It was fifteen minutes past five and he didn't want to be late. Using some water, he pulled it back. He might look strange, but at least it was somewhat presentable. He put on his black blazer and he did the buttons before undoing them again a few seconds later. His hands were shaking and he realized he hadn't really thought this through.
"What am I going to say?" he muttered as he walked to the living room. How was he going to explain his invitation to dinner? He had already admitted to himself that he missed Nowaki but he now needed to swallow his pride and actually tell him that. Taking his keys, he made his way out of the apartment. As he walked to the restaurant he thought about what he wanted to do; he wanted Nowaki back but doubts were starting to creep in. What if Nowaki didn't want him back? Months had passed since they had last seen each other and he wondered if Nowaki's feelings for him had changed.
He just needed to stand in front of that idiot and tell him that he loved him, that he missed him and wanted him back. Nowaki would smile and hug him, and then they would have dinner and come back home.
"Home?" he asked himself. Did Nowaki even consider the apartment his home anymore? These doubts made him turn around and walk back to the apartment before stopping and turning around again.
Coward, you can do this. Don't be a child!
It was almost six when he arrived at the restaurant. He always did this, arriving way too early for his dates with Nowaki.
No, this is not a date. It's just dinner. Maybe I should just take a walk until the time for our date- it's not a date! It's just a dinner.
He was already flustered and talking to himself wasn't helping. Deciding to take a walk, he turned and immediately bumped into a much taller person. He was about to open his mouth to yell about looking out where he was walking when he noticed who it was.
"Nowaki!" he said, standing straight and pulling on his blazer to get it in place. "What are you doing here so early?" His heart was racing and he was glad for the noise of the cars and people around because he was afraid Nowkai would be able to hear the way it was pounding against his chest.
"I remembered you were always early and I didn't want to make you wait," Nowaki said. I wanted to see you so badly.
His eyes were going over Hiroki, trying to take in the sight in front of him. It had been months, exactly five months since the last time he had seen him. Hiroki looked different with his hair pulled back like that and he wondered if this was his new style. He stood awkwardly, fighting the urge to hug Hiroki and still nervous about what this invitation was really about. He had been at the hospital going over one of his patient's charts when he had been called to the reception desk. There, on the desk, was a bouquet of roses waiting for him and he had even asked the delivery boy to make sure they were for him. In all the years he had worked at the flower shop he had never received flowers himself and the gesture had made him happy. At first he had thought it was from one of his patients but when he had checked the message that had come with it, he had been more than surprised.
"Flowers? For me?" he heard the words before an arm was placed around his neck. Nowaki turned to smile at Tsumori, his mentor, before looking back at the small envelope in his hand.
"Someone sent me flowers," he said.
"What are you waiting for? Open it, I want to see what it says," his mentor replied and when Nowaki hesitated for a moment Tsumori took the envelope from his hand to open and take out the small card inside.
"I know I don't deserve it but would you have dinner with me tonight at 7 o'clock at the same restaurant? I'll wait for you. If you don't come, I'll understand. From Hiroki Kamijō," Tsumori read aloud.
"Hiro-san? Hiro-san sent me flowers?" Nowaki asked and Tsumori was hard pressed not to roll his eyes. Nowaki was truly a kid when it came to this type of things. Taking Nowaki's arm, he dragged him to one of the more isolated hallways and pressed him to one of the walls.
"Don't tell me you're going to go to that dinner," he said, crossing his arms over his chest.
"But Hiro-san sent-"
"Yes, yes, he sent you flowers. How nice. But aren't you forgetting you have the night shift tonight?" Tsumori asked. He saw the kicked puppy look on the boy's face and he let out a sigh. "I'll let you go but…are you sure you want to go? Do you remember those first few days after you left him? You were barely able to function; do you want to go through that again?"
Nowaki looked down at the floor. He wanted to see Hiroki again, but Tsumori was right, he didn't know if he could go through a second goodbye, especially in person.
"But he might need my help or-"
"So now he contacts you because he needs your help? How selfish! I can't allow you to go," Tsumori said, shaking his head.
"What if he just wants to see me? I need to see him, mentor. I…" he struggled for words for a moment before he felt Tsumori's hand on his shoulder.
"Go. But if you come back tomorrow with a sad face, I'm firing you," he said and Nowaki smiled before jogging away in the direction of their lockers. It was already four thirty. He had just enough time to go home and take a shower. He wanted to arrive early in hope that he could see Hiroki before their dinner. His heart was racing with anticipation and happiness even though he knew he shouldn't be getting his hopes up. It had been months and Hiroki had never called or looked for him. Why now? He remembered it was Valentine's Day but he quickly disregarded the idea. Hiroki would never ask him out on that holiday. But the possibility that he had was making him nervous and giddy. He would be the happiest man alive if that was the reason for the invitation.
"Oh…well…the reservation is at seven, I don't think we can go in yet," Hiroki answered. It was awkward, he didn't know what to say or do. He had expected to have at least an hour before dinner to prepare what he was going to say. He was now standing in front of Nowaki and he didn't know how to properly greet him. Was he supposed to pretend it had been perfectly normal to have invited him out for dinner after what happened between them? Nowaki was looking at him but wasn't doing anything. No usual smile or hugs. He felt a crush of disappointment, but really, he didn't have anyone else to blame but himself. What had he expected? To be greeted with open arms?
His own eyes were going over Nowaki. He looked good, he looked healthy and handsome and perfect. For some reason, Hiroki wasn't happy about this. He wanted Nowaki to look miserable, to look like he hadn't slept in days because of his absence. In truth, he wanted Nowaki to look just like he did. He had been forced to place cold towels over his eyelids to get some of the redness out of his eyes caused by sleepless nights and he knew he had lost some weight as well. He had lost himself so much in his research that he had barely gotten two meals a day. All because of this boy, who had come into his life without warning and turned his world upside down and then had left him. He felt a stab of bitterness and he looked away. How dared he look so good? He was dressed for the occasion, but on Nowaki it seemed that he hadn't even tried. On the other hand, he felt ridiculous with his hair all slicked back and dressed as if he was going to a meeting. He suddenly realized how absurd this was; what had he been thinking asking Nowaki out for dinner?
Why had he even done it in the first place?
He turned back and found Nowaki's soft gaze on him and he felt it. That pull, those damned butterflies only Nowaki could cause and he remembered. He wanted him back; he wanted Nowaki to hold him and kiss him and be as ridiculous as he wanted.
"Have you lost weight Hiro-san? Are you taking care of yourself?" Nowaki asked anxious and it didn't help Hiroki's mood at the moment. Of course Nowaki would notice, he was going to be a doctor after all.
"My research has taken a lot of my time," he said. It's because I've missed you.
"But Hiro-san, you have to take care of yourself. You have-"
"I know, I know!" he snapped. It's your fault I feel this lost.
Nowaki was quiet; he had made Hiroki angry again. "But you still look good Hiro-san," he said softly.
Hiroki looked away, feeling the blush on his face and thankful for the lack of light in the dark street. He knew how he looked; sleep deprived and ridiculous, but the butterflies were now even more excited with those words and he wondered if he was going to throw them up at some point during the night.
"Can we go for a walk?" Nowaki asked, "Until it's time for dinner?" I just want to spend time with you.
Hiroki nodded and they walked down the street, both silent and all too aware of the distance between them. Hiroki remembered the times they had gone out to eat or grocery shopping. How many times had he gotten angry with Nowaki when the boy tried to hold hands or kiss in public? He glanced in the direction of his companion and noticed Nowaki was deep in thought, not even looking where he was walking. Was he remembering that too? He didn't want him to remember the bad aspects of their relationship, not now when he was trying to get him back.
"So how's your work at the hospital?" he asked, desperate for conversation. Nowaki finally turned to him, a small smile on his lips and he felt the butterflies hitting his ribcage.
"It's good; long hours and a lot of work but I like it. Keeps me busy," Nowaki said. It keeps me from running back to you. "What about the university? How are your classes going?" He didn't care what they talked about, he only cared that he was finally seeing Hiroki and talking to him again.
"Same as before, filled with lazy students," he replied. He really didn't want to talk about his work now. This was small talk and he hated it because he didn't know what to say or ask. Had their communication been this bad before? He had never really taken the time to ask Nowaki about his work, what he wanted to do or what he liked. No wonder the boy had left him. His determination to get him back was waning by the second. He just didn't know how to bring the subject up. After all, there wasn't an easy way to say 'I fucked up, big time. I'm sorry,' was there?
"I see," Nowaki answered and the awkward air around them thickened. Both were trying to thinks of something to say, both afraid the other one would soon realize this hadn't been the best of ideas and would want to leave.
Both stopped as they realized they had started talking at the same time.
"What is it Hiro-san?" Nowaki asked first.
"No, no…what were you going to say?" Hiroki asked, stalling and knowing he was wasting time.
They kept walking and Hiroki realized they would soon arrive at the little park they sometimes met at after Nowaki's work ended. They made their way over some stairs that left them standing against a railing that allowed them to see the city lights.
"Why did you invite me out for dinner?"
Hiroki turned surprised to see Nowaki looking at him with his hands deep in the pockets of his own blazer. Yes, the boy was way too direct with his words. Now he was being forced to say what he had come here for and he didn't know if he even had the courage. But he thought back on the lonely nights and just how empty his apartment felt without Nowaki. In how empty he felt.
"I…I wanted to see you. I wanted…" I want you to come back to me. "It's been a long time and I just figured that uh…a dinner would be nice…to catch up…on things," he finished, each word making him mentally wince.
"Oh." Nowaki felt the small hope he had allowed himself to feel disappear. So that was the reason? Perhaps his mentor had been right in not wanting him to come here tonight.
Hiroki saw the disappointment evident on Nowaki's face and that gave him a small hope that perhaps all was not lost. "Nowaki…I…that's not exactly true…I did want to see you but…" He was blushing and again he was thankful there wasn't a lot of light around. "I…see…I wanted to ask you if…well…why…why did you leave the apartment?" Why did you leave me? "Were you tired of me?" The last question came out in a whisper and he knew this was the moment he had been dreading.
"What? No, Hiro-san, that's not why I left!" Nowaki said as he took his hands out of his pockets and took a step closer. Hiroki almost expected the hug but it never came. Nowaki seemed to remember where they were and the situation they were in and he remained where he was, just a couple of steps away.
"Then why?" he asked, forcing himself to meet his eyes.
Nowaki struggled for words; what was he supposed to say? The truth? Hiroki would think him a child, immature if he said what he had been worried about, what still plagued him even if they weren't together anymore. But if Hiroki wanted to talk about it, he would be honest. Perhaps Hiroki just wanted a sense of closure, and even if it pained him, he would tell the truth, say good bye and then leave again.
"When I met you six years ago I thought I could handle being Akihiko-san's substitute but-"
"I couldn't. I can't," he said, ignoring Hiroki's attempt to talk. He knew Hiroki would probably try to make him feel better, but there was no need to pretend anymore. "I thought that if I loved you with everything that I had, that perhaps you would forget about him and feel the same way about me."
"Hiro-san," he interrupted again, not wanting to lose his courage. "In all these years we lived together I always wondered if you were just shy with your affection or if perhaps you just weren't used to it. But then I…I'm sorry Hiro-san…I found your diary."
Hiroki wanted to stop him from saying all those things because he knew that he had been the one to fail him but then his mind registered what Nowaki had said at the end. His diary? He was confused for only a moment before he realized what diary Nowaki was referring to.
"It was an accident, really. I was cleaning the bookshelf and I saw it and I just opened it and…it was that page. I know Hiro-san. I know what you did for him," Nowaki said softly. He wasn't really mad at Hiroki for what he had done; that had been in the past, before they had become lovers. What hurt him was the way Hiroki thought of Akihiko; the way he desired his hands and lips and love. None of the things he had wanted from him.
Hiroki wanted to be angry at him. He had read something personal, something that nobody had the right to read. He should be furious and ready to leave Nowaki for good but all he felt was shame. He felt guilt and sadness for the man in front of him. He finally understood. All those fits of jealousy, all those silences when Akihiko was mentioned, all those times Nowaki had felt like he was competing for his affection. He knew exactly what he had written in that diary; his desire for Akihiko, his words of love for him. Suddenly he remembered that last night with Nowaki, the way he had said his name and told him he loved him. And what had he said?
Shut up you idiot!
He closed his eyes, already feeling the prickling sensation behind his eyelids. "Nowaki," he tried as he opened his eyes and the vision of the man in front of him blurred for a moment. "I-"
"There's no need to explain anything Hiro-san. This was my fault. I wasn't able to settle with what you gave me and I wanted more, I wanted to be your number one. It's selfish of me, I know, but I can't help it. Whenever I saw you with him or with anyone I felt inadequate and I-"
"Stop it!" he finally snapped. He was tired of being interrupted. "Stop comparing youself with him. You're nothing like him," he exclaimed, his hands clenching in fists.
Nowaki heard the words and took them the wrong way. He turned away, knowing this was it. He had been prepared to fight, to do anything to get Hiroki back but Hiroki had just told him he would never be like Akihiko.
"Stop being an idiot!" Hiroki exclaimed again, his anger rising as well. "I know you Nowaki, I know what you're thinking and you're wrong. I'm telling you that you're nothing like him and it's the truth. But…but…I like that about you. I… I like the way you are. He's my childhood friend, my first love, yes…but you're…" his tongue felt heavy in his mouth but Nowaki was now looking at him with wide eyes and he wouldn't back down. "You're the only one I…"
"Hiro-san?" his voice came out soft, almost breaking. Was Hiroki saying what he thought he was? "Hiro-san…" Had he gotten everything wrong? If only Hiroki could say those three little words. He saw him struggling, but he also saw the slight flush on his cheeks. Was he embarrassed? Had he been right to think that Hiroki was only shy? He wished he could hold him now, but they were in public, there were more people nearby and he knew Hiroki disliked public displays of affection. He then thought of something and he didn't know if he wanted to know the answer but at the same time, knowing the answer could help clear some of his doubts. "Hiro-san…why didn't you mention me in your diary?" There was something stupid about the question, he thought, but he still needed to know.
Why wasn't I important enough to be included? Why him? Why not me?
Hiroki tried to make up a lie, a small one so he wouldn't have to say why he hadn't included Nowaki but he couldn't concentrate. Not with Nowaki looking at him with those eyes that seemed to be looking into his soul, those eyes that spoke volumes and were now looking at him with sadness and hope. Swallowing his pride, he decided to be completely honest.
"I don't share very well. I didn't want to share you…not even with a piece of paper. My memories of you are mine and mine alone." He was blushing; he felt it and part of him was annoyed at the fact that he was being this corny. He looked down at the pavement, finding the small pieces of used gum stuck to it fascinating. Soft fingers touched his chin and forced him to tilt his head back.
He's going to kiss me.
Nowaki brushed his thumb from side to side on the soft skin of Hiroki's chin, wanting to kiss him and knowing he wouldn't. But the fact that Hiroki wasn't moving away, the fact that his eyes had closed for a second as if expecting and wanting the kiss meant more than those three words that hadn't been spoken.
"Later…we'll do it a lot, okay?" Nowaki whispered, echoing the words from another time, from another misunderstanding that had also threatened to break them apart.
Hiroki moved his head away, disliking the absence of the warm, soft lips he missed and the fact that the butterflies in his stomach had made their appearance again. Nowaki was now smiling at him, a smile full of relief and sweet happiness that something in his chest tightened at the fact he had caused it.
"It's almost seven, we should go to our dinner," Nowaki said softly and they started walking down the same streets they had come from. The distance between them now was smaller but still there and Hiroki's mind kept flashing him the times Nowaki had tried to hold his hand. If he tried now…would Nowaki accept? He glanced down and noticed Nowaki's hand wasn't in his pocket. He looked up, they weren't walking on an isolated street but right on the main one, with shops lining up on the sides and people all around. But if he could just reach just a little…just enough…his fingertips brushed Nowaki's fingers even as both kept looking straight ahead.
"Excuse me!" A kid pushed himself between them, running and laughing as another one followed him. Hiroki heard a woman's voice, ordering them to stop running but they didn't pay attention.
Bratty kids! He scowled, not even glancing at Nowaki again for the moment had already been lost.
When they sat at their table, Hiroki busied himself with the menu, still feeling awkward and lost about what to say. It seemed they had finally cleared their misunderstandings but things weren't back to normal. Their plates came and Hiroki realized he was too nervous to be hungry, the butterflies in his stomach taking too much space for him to eat anything else.
How could he have been so blind? Nowaki tried to make conversation, asking again about his classes and then telling him stories about the children at the hospital. That seemed to calm their nerves for at least they were now talking. More than ever Hiroki wanted to open his mouth and say what he had come out here to say but his courage was failing or perhaps his pride was just winning. Just three words, just a small confession. But in the end, his pride won and he stuffed his mouth with pasta. When he looked up again, Nowaki was staring at him, looking at him like he usually did. That look that made him dizzy and nervous and those damned butterflies were there again, tormenting him.
"Is it hot in here?" he blurted out.
"No Hiro-san…but it might help if you took your scarf and your jacket off," Nowaki replied, looking at his attire and Hiroki realized he had completely forgotten to take them off.
"Of course, duh!" As soon as the word was out of his mouth he cringed. Had he just said duh? As an English professor he had no excuse, Miyagi would probably be rolling in his grave if he was dead. Daring to glance up again, he found Nowaki looking at him with a tiny smile on his face, betraying his amusement and he scowled. He wouldn't allow Nowaki to make fun of him!
"You're being very cute Hiro-san."
And with those words he melted and he had to fight to keep his scowl in place. When it was time for dessert, Nowaki surprised him by telling the waiter he wanted the check.
"We'll have the dessert at home," Nowaki said and Hiroki blushed to the roots of his hair. What had he meant by that? The butterflies, no, they weren't butterflies anymore; they were horses stampeding around inside his stomach.
When the check came Nowaki reached for the black billfold only to have it snatched away by Hiroki. The young professor took out his wallet and placed some bills inside before placing it on the desk again. Nowaki wanted to reach for it again, to at least pay half of it, he could certainly afford it now, but he also knew how proud Hiroki was so he decided against it. After a moment of silence, Hiroki spoke up.
"I was the one to invite you out to dinner." Nowaki didn't reply for a moment, unsure on how to take that but then he realized something. Hiroki was sporting a new hairstyle, one that while it looked good on him, wasn't exactly him. He was also wearing formal clothing and had now paid the check. They were out on a date.
Hiroki had asked him out on a date. Not only that, but had done it on Valentine's date.
"Hiro-san…is this a date?" he asked, because this would surely end all of his worries.
"What? No! Of course not, this is not a date," Hiroki answered, embarrassed, taking the billfold in his hands and playing with it. "This is just a dinner between two people who…who have certain feelings for each other….and it happens to be on this day. But it's not a date. No."
Nowaki hid his smile behind his hand, amused at how flustered Hiroki was but happy because his question had been answered. It was a date.
"You are really cute Hiro-san," he said and Hiroki hissed and looked away, an obvious blush on his cheeks.
When they made their way out of the restaurant, they started walking in the direction of the apartment. Both had questions they were afraid to ask.
Will you stay with me?
Can I stay with you?
While Nowaki had said they would have dessert at home, Hiroki wasn't sure what he had meant by that and whether or not he was staying. They were a few blocks from the apartment when it started raining. At first it was just a few drops but just a few moments later, the rain was heavy and he realized they would not make it home without getting wet. It was at that moment that Nowaki caught him by surprise by taking his hand and tugging.
"Come on Hiro-san," he said smiling before starting to run, dragging him as well. He ran out of instinct because all he could concentrate on was the fact that Nowaki's hand was warm, different to the raining falling over them. It was on the corner of the street where the apartment was located that one of his feet slipped on the wet ground and he would have fallen if strong arms hadn't caught him in time. When he looked up, he found Nowaki's eyes on his and when they moved down to his lips, Hiroki unconsciously licked them.
"I'm sorry Hiro-san…but I can't wait," Nowaki murmured.
He had only a second to think that they were right in the corner of a street right under the rain and about to kiss. Their lips met tentatively, almost afraid to touch and he held himself against Nowaki, wanting this simple kiss more than anything. When both were assured the other wouldn't pull away, lips parted and the simple kiss became passionate. Heads tilted to the side, tongues getting reacquainted again and if there was a soft moan, it was lost in the noise of the rain.
When they finally broke their lips apart, Nowaki was smiling as he took Hiroki's hand again. They walked the rest of the distance to the apartment in silence, not caring about the rain or the thunder that lightened up the sky every few minutes. Hiroki had to let go of his hand, albeit reluctantly, to open the door of his apartment. Once inside, Nowaki stood by the door.
"You should take a quick shower Hiro-san, so you don't get sick."
"Take one with me," the words were out of his mouth before he realized what he was saying and he looked away. This was something Nowaki had always wanted and that he had always refused. Why? Because he had been afraid of experiencing all those things and falling even more in love. It now sounded like a ridiculous reason and he wanted to give this to Nowaki. Turning to look at Nowaki, he found him looking back at him with soft eyes and a smile on his lips. Not needing an answer, he turned and made his way to the bathroom, listening to the footsteps that followed him.
It felt awkward to undress in front of Nowaki and in a moment of panic, he thought of walking out, but the boy seemed to notice because he walked closer and began to help him. He had to stand there, letting Nowaki take care off his clothes while both remained awkwardly silent.
He opted for the shower instead of the tub because it was quicker and once inside, he turned around, not wanting to look at Nowaki. His body was already responding to just his presence and if he looked, he knew he wouldn't be able to stand it. The shower was quick, the purpose of it just to warm their bodies and as he got the last bit of soap off his body, two arms reached from around him to turn off the shower. Nowaki was standing right behind him, his body pressed to his and he felt the hard evidence on his backside that could only mean he wasn't the only one affected with the situation. Soft lips pressed again the curve of his shoulder and he shivered. But in the next second that warm body and those soft lips were gone and Nowaki was moving away, reaching for their towels. Hiroki wrapped one around his waist and used another one to dry his body while Nowaki did the same. They moved to the bedroom and the stampeding horses returned. He dared to look up at Nowaki.
"Are you staying?" Nowaki walked closer, his bare feet over the carpet, until he was standing right in front of him.
"Do you want me to, Hiro-san?" Both didn't want to make assumptions, too afraid to take the wrong step and destroy what they had achieved until now. Hiroki didn't know how to answer, but this was exactly what he wanted. He had set out to apologize and get Nowaki back. While he hadn't apologized yet, he wanted to get his feelings across. Both wanted this, he could see that at least. Without thinking more about it, he reached to undo the towel around Nowaki's waist. It was a bold move, uncharacteristic of him but it was the only thing he had come up with to answer Nowaki's question. The room was dark, the only light coming from the outside thunderstorm and he was again glad for it because he knew he was blushing. The worst thing was that Nowaki wasn't saying anything. When the towel hit the floor, he returned his hands to his sides, not knowing what to do with them. Again Nowaki tilted his face up with his fingers on his chin and Hiroki saw him smiling.
"I told you we were going to do it a lot, didn't I?"
Those were the last words he heard before his lips were captured in a kiss. It wasn't like the kiss under the rain, this time it seemed like Nowaki wanted to possess him.
Nowaki parted his lips with his tongue, sliding it inside to taste and tease while his hands went to take off Hiroki's towel. When their bodies pressed together, both had to break the kiss to gasp at the sensation.
Hiroki thought he was falling but then his back met the bed and they were kissing again and this time he returned the kiss with the same enthusiasm. They only stopped the kiss when the need to breathe became urgent but Nowaki's lips were then at the sensitive line of his jaw and right under his ear where he sucked for a moment until he let out a soft moan. He wanted to stifle the sounds he was making, he had always done it because he disliked letting Nowaki know how much he affected him but it had been months, too many months without Nowaki.
Nowaki moved his lips lower, nipping and kissing every inch of skin he came into contact with. He took one of Hiroki's nipples into his mouth, tugging gently with his teeth before letting his tongue dart out his to soothe the small ache left behind. He gave the other the same treatment, while his hand moved lower, down Hiroki's navel to between his legs. He could feel every shiver from the man beneath him and he couldn't help but smile. When his lips were just over the soft skin of his navel, Hiroki was already clutching the sheets on either side of his head, his body straining against his hold. He moved his head lower, taking Hiroki into his mouth and using his tongue to tease. He held Hiroki's hips down while his head bobbed up and down, stopping each time to lick at the tiny opening at the tip of his erection. He enjoyed Hiroki's ragged breaths, the way his body tensed and the little groans that sounded like his name. He heard Hiroki's warning when he was close, but he kept the movements of his mouth until he felt the professor arch off the bed and the warm liquid spurt down his throat. He swallowed and licked Hiroki clean before moving up while leaving kisses behind.
"Why…why do you do that? You're not supposed to swallow that-" Nowaki stopped his words with a kiss and his eyes widened when he tasted himself on Nowaki's tongue. He didn't know if it was because it was Nowaki or something else, but he found the taste not as unpleasant as he had thought it would be and he closed his eyes, enjoying the kiss this time. His body was still tingling with pleasure when Nowaki moved away and sat on his heels between his parted thighs. He watched him reach inside the nightstand for the bottle of lubricant and a small foil packet. He knew what was coming next and he made a move to turn on his stomach but a strong hand held him in place.
"Please stay like this…I want to see your face."
They had never had sex like this and Hiroki wondered how many times Nowaki had wanted this only to be denied. He did it because in pleasure he wouldn't be able to hide the emotions in his face and he felt less vulnerable in the other position.
"Okay…just…just don't look at me," the words sounded childish to his own ears but Nowaki didn't laugh. He just looked at him with a soft smile on his lips, not of amusement, but of understanding. Nowaki was gentle with his preparation, too gentle perhaps. He wanted to tell him he wasn't going to break, that he was ready but he knew that in this Nowaki would deny him. His body fought the first intrusion, reminding him that it had been too many months without this. Nowaki kissed him softly, trying to distract him from the pain of a second finger. Those fingers moved inside him knowingly, going directly to that pleasure point inside him that took his breath away. They moved gently, pressing with just enough force to make him tilt his head back and groan. When a third finger was added, he found himself pushing against Nowaki's hand, wanting more, wanting him.
The fingers were withdrawn, leaving him feeling strangely empty and he opened his eyes, not really remembering when he had closed them. Nowaki was reaching again for the foil packet and he reached out, grabbing his wrist. Nowkai looked at him, a question clear on his eyes.
"Let me…I want to do this," he replied. He pushed Nowaki onto his back, following him until their positions were reversed. He had always being selfish with past lovers, wanting only his own pleasure to think of theirs, but not this time. He lowered his head, parting his lips before taking Nowaki into his mouth. He didn't know if he was doing it right for he was only following what Nowaki did to him. He had no experience but he was eager to please and the first moan out of Nowaki's lips encouraged him, prompting him to take him deeper and down his throat. He didn't get enough time because only a few minutes later he was being pulled up and down and when he opened his eyes he was laying on his back with Nowaki on top of him again.
With shaking hands, Nowaki ripped the foil packet open, taking the condom out and putting it on. Coating himself with the lubricant, he positioned himself, kissing Hiroki as he pushed his hips forward. He hated that first sound of pain that always escaped Hiroki on the first push and he forced himself to stop, giving him time to adjust before pushing a little further. He pressed his forehead against Hiroki's, breaking the kiss to let him breathe and relax around him.
The only sounds in the room were their harsh breaths and the thunderclaps outside. The first thrust was a mix of pain and pleasure and he groaned. The second made him moan and he held on tightly to Nowaki's shoulders. The third made him cry out and push his own hips against Nowaki's. He wasn't sure why he was being this way, so open with his emotions and actions. Was it just because he was back with Nowaki? If he could admit it out loud, he would say he had always wanted this as well. To see Nowaki's face in pleasure, to see how he closed his eyes for a few seconds as if the sensations were too much for him, and his lips…his lips were parted and the sounds he made added to his pleasure. No matter the reasons, he wanted this and for the first time he allowed himself to express it.
Their movements were slow, their lips meeting in heated kisses and for some reason, this all felt new. Like that first afternoon when Nowaki confessed his love.
"Hiro-san…" his name was moaned and he couldn't help but tense. He wanted to ask him not to talk but when he tried, his demand ended in another groan.
"Hiro-san…" Nowaki's thrusts were faster now, more desperate and Hiroki clutched his shoulders.
Nowaki was aware of the change in Hiroki and he knew he wouldn't be able to last much longer. This was the first time Hiroki was like this and his body was demanding release. He couldn't help but say Hiroki's name again and this time Hiroki was able to get the words out of his mouth.
Nowaki slowed down, an old fear creeping his way through the pleasure fog in his mind. There it was again, Hiroki's reluctance to hear him talk.
"Why?" he asked, his body tense but this time not in pleasure. It was as if the whole evening hadn't occurred and he was back again to that day he had read Hiroki's diary.
If he hadn't been so immersed in pleasure, Hiroki would have noticed the change in Nowaki. But his body was feverish, preparing itself for climax and his mouth wasn't working with his brain anymore.
"Because…because your voice…it makes me…it makes me want to…" his voice trailed off in a moan when Nowaki pushed inside him again.
Meanwhile, Nowaki was trying to make sense of what Hiroki had said, but his body was betraying him and he couldn't help but move.
"Hiro-san," he murmured again and Hiroki moaned. It suddenly dawned on him why Hiroki didn't like him speaking and happiness threatened to bubble up in his chest. His new found discovery, however, was lost as his body demanded his full attention. He thrust back, moving out of Hiroki's body and feeling his legs around his waist tightened to force him back in. It didn't take them long before they were again near their peak and he lowered his lips, right beside his lover's ear.
"I love you Hiro-san."
The words alone were enough to make him groan and arch off the bed as his orgasm hit him. Hiroki was aware he had groaned Nowaki's name but he didn't care because his body was pulsing with pleasure and shuddering with the intensity of it.
Watching Hiroki in pleasure was enough for Nowaki to reach his climax and he pushed one last time inside him as he pressed his mouth to Hiroki's neck to stifle his own cries. They lay panting, not wanting to move but knowing they had to. It was Nowaki who placed a kiss on his cheek before pulling away. He watched him through half-lidded eyes as he sat on his heels to take the condom off before cleaning himself with one of the discarded towels. After that was done, Nowaki settled beside him on the bed but made no move to touch him at first. A few minutes later, he felt Nowaki's hand on his hair, tousling like he always did but then he moved it away again.
He didn't want this, not after the evening they'd had. It took him a few moments but he swallowed his pride and gathered his courage and he moved until he was able to rest his head on Nowaki's chest.
"I'm cold," he whispered. He was nervous, afraid of being rejected because…how many times had he done the same to Nowaki?
But Nowaki's arms went around him and then kisses were being placed on his forehead. Hiroki wanted to tell him to stop, that it was bothersome and corny. But he couldn't bring himself to put a stop to it because the truth was…the truth was that he loved it. Because with every caress, with every kiss and every soft word, Nowaki was helping him. Because the stupid, stupid boy was mending his heart.
It wouldn't be easy, it wouldn't all be happy moments and roses. But he was willing to do everything he needed to make it work because it was Nowaki. His Nowaki. Because if he had to work and suffer to make someone happy, he wanted to go through it only for him. Because he was the only one he wanted. The only one he wanted to love.