Now that he was in control of his own body again, Ritsu seemed to be back to normal. Shigeo was relieved. He hadn't been all that afraid of the bakeneko spirit that had briefly possessed Ritsu, but it had been strange to watch his brother walk on all fours, and hiss at anyone who got close, and try to eat Master Reigen. He much preferred the brother who unbent his spoons for him and helped him with his math homework.
There were a few lingering oddities. For example, at dinner, instead of cleaning his plate like usual, Ritsu had devoured his sanma straightaway and left the rest of his food untouched. And after nightfall, when he'd snuck into Shigeo's bedroom in the way that was starting to become a habit between them, he'd bit and scratched a little more than he normally did -- not hard enough to hurt, but in enough places that Shigeo was glad it was now winter uniform season at school. But aside from that, he was the same familiar Ritsu as always.
Or so he'd thought, until Ritsu leaned over to swipe his tongue in a long wet stripe down the back of his head.
"You licked me." Shigeo reached a hand up to his hair, just to check. It was damp.
"Oh -- um. Sorry." In the moonlight, Ritsu's eyes were wide. "I wasn't thinking. It was sticking up, and I just ..."
"It's okay." It didn't feel bad, really, though if he had the option he'd prefer to detangle his hair with a comb. Still, for Ritsu he could endure this and more. "Do you want to do it again?"
"No. No. I'm fine," Ritsu said, his cheeks pink. "Let's just go to sleep."
"All right," Shigeo said. He laid back down on his pillow. After a moment, he could feel Ritsu curl up beside him. Once they were both settled, he reached for Ritsu's hand under the blankets, and rubbed their thumbs together.
As he nodded off to sleep, he swore he could hear Ritsu start to purr.