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Alternative Support Group

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“I just want them to see me and not scream and run in fright when I show myself.  Is it too much to ask for a little human interaction with all the yelling and fainting?”  The lights flicker as the temperature drops.  The spectre who is loudly wailing is flickering between the image of a beautiful boy and the image of the same boy, but covered in deep cuts and blood.

 

“I’ll give him some human interaction.”  Someone whispers, too loudly, from across the circle before a chair goes flying towards the person who had spoke.

 

“O-okay!”  Yachi claps her hands to try and dissipate the fight before it really gets started.  Hajime doesn’t feel too bad, Yuuji deserves a chair in the face every once and awhile.  But as much as Yachi tries to get the meeting back on track it’s devolved into the usual bickering.  Tooru, the beautiful and very much dead boy, is making things float and fly in the air with his anger.  Hajime is use to it and dodges another chair.

 

“Sit down Shittykawa!”  Hajime barks out and everyone generally settles down at that.

 

Hajime always found it a little funny that in a room full of monsters, he might be the scariest one.  Or at least the scariest one to monsters.  He was human after all, but he someone had gotten caught in both worlds.

 

Yachi, a tiny little witch, had organized the support group over a year ago.  She called it an “alternative” support group, everyone else called it the Monster Support Group.  Tooru had stumbled upon it and promptly forced Hajime to go, despite the fact that he was very much human and made everyone extremely nervous when he first showed up.  It wasn’t exactly easy for Hajime to be surrounded by creatures that nightmares and children-eating fairytales are made up of either, but mostly they were alright.

 

Well, Yuuji was an asshole and Wakatoshi was as emotional as a toothbrush but most everyone else was okay.  Tooru also needed to talk to other people besides Hajime and their two other friends once and awhile.

 

“So I purposely scheduled this meeting for Halloween because I know it’s a hard time for most of us, does anyone want to talk about their fears or worries?”  Yachi asked, gradually turning more red the longer the spotlight was on her.  Yuuji mumbled something, probably perverted, and a whole table flew into the back of his head.  Yuuji laid sprawled out in the middle of the circle of monsters.

 

“Tooru.”  Hajime ground out.

 

“What?  I was right here the whole time.  You can’t prove anything!”  Tooru sing-songed happily.

 

“You are a poltergiest who can-”

 

“Shut up Ushiwaka!  No one asked you!”  Tooru snapped, face flashing to the one of a horrendous car accident victim before smoothing back out to it’s usual 18-year-old perfection.  Perfection that would never age, which Hajime thought was a damn shame.  He had always looked forward to the moment vain Tooru got his first gray hair or wrinkle.

 

Realizing they would never get back on track, Yachi dismissed the meeting and directed everyone to the only table left alone during Tooru’s tantrum.  It was full of hot beverages and sweets.  Takahiro made his way straight to the creampuffs, Issei following leisurely at his heels before casually asking how many creampuffs Takahiro could fit in his mouth.  Hajime looked away in slight horror as Takahiro took that as a challenge on his very honor.

 

“Oh no I’m late!”  Shouyou yelled in anguish as he appeared in a bright flash.  Shouyou was not, strictly speaking, a monster but a minor God.  Yachi hurried over to the distraught God, trying to cheer him up as the large golem, Takanobe, wandered over to say hello.  Shouyou brightened up at the appearance of his friends, cheering up and making the entire room appear brighter for his smile.

 

“So, how is halloween difficult for you?  We should get the human perspective every once and awhile.”  A warm and deep voice came from Hajime’s left side.  He had been watching Takahiro in horrified fascination as he fit yet another creampuff in his mouth and was taken off guard by the sudden appearance of Daichi.

 

If Hajime was being perfectly honest Tooru was the reason he first started to attend these meetings, but Daichi was the reason he continued to show up.  Tooru didn’t need him any longer, except maybe to keep his spectral tantrums to a minimum and help Yachi control the crowd, but mostly he was just a silent witness.

 

“Sometimes children show up to my door for candy and Tooru tries to scare them but they just think he’s a lame trick and then I have to deal with a skulking ghost all night.”  Hajime says in a deadpan tone as he looks over at Daichi, hoping that he can get through one conversation, just one damn conversation without making a total ass of himself.

 

It doesn’t help that Daichi is about ten different kinds of attractive and adorable and his laugh and smile are so warm and inviting.  He’s shorter than Hajime, though not by any amount that really matters, but he has broad shoulders and the slightest dusting of freckles over his nose and cheeks.

 

Daichi is a huge damn problem and he doesn’t even know it.

 

“That does sound difficult.”  Daichi gives Hajime’s shoulder a comforting squeeze, which makes Hajime feel as if his very stomach is being squeezed tight.  “You have my condolences.”  Hajime laughs, he can’t help it, because Daichi sounds so serious but Hajime knows the other man is teasing him.

 

“Have you tried the cookies?”  Hajime offers up the plate without really looking at them.  Yachi made them so they are most likely delicious.  Daichi looks down at the plate than up at Hajime before looking back at the plate.  Hajime looks down in confusion at the bone-shaped cookies that are frosted white.

 

“Are you asking me if I want a bone?”  Daichi asks slowly as Hajime’s face burns.

 

“Oh my god,” Hajime groans, trying to hide the plate but Daichi laughs as he takes one and bites into it.

 

“I’m teasing you.”  Hajime looks over at Daichi’s grinning face.

 

“Asshole.”  Hajime grumbles but he’s smiling anyways.

 

“Little bit.”  Daichi shrugs without remorse.  Daichi was a werewolf, so he had probably heard every dog-joke in the book.  Daichi wasn’t the only werewolf Hajime knew, there was Kentarou who was missing from the meeting because, well mostly he hated these things.  Hated most places with a lot of people gathered.  But a big reason was-

 

“Isn’t the full moon tonight?”  Hajime asked before immediately regretting it.  He did download an app on his phone that told him the phases of the moon each month but there was no reason for anyone to know about that.

 

“Yeah, I’ll have to leave soon.”  Daichi said as he took another bone-shaped cookie.

 

“Do you want me to come with you?”  Hajime asked because why the hell not?  He had already fully embarrassed himself so what was putting himself on the line one last time going to do?  Daichi gave him a curious look, half of the bone cookie sticking out of his mouth.  “I just remember you said sometimes it gets pretty lonely.  And people think you’re a wild dog.  A lot of people will be out tonight and if they see us together they’ll just think it’s a guy with his-”  Hajime cut himself out as Daichi ate the remaining cookie.

 

“Dog?”  Daichi grinned and Hajime wished the lighting was a little better in the room because he could have sworn Daichi was blushing.  “You remember I said that?  About being lonely.”  Daichi didn’t really gripe all that much during the meetings, mostly he was a good listener and he helped out other people.

 

“Yes.”  Hajime shrugged, feeling slightly self conscious.

 

“Don’t you have a party or something?  Isn’t that what humans do on Halloween?”  Daichi asked but not in a dismissive way.  It was like he was giving Hajime an out, as if Hajime had offered out of some sort of obligation or pity when in reality he just wanted to spend time with Daichi outside of this small, dimly lit room full of monsters.  Even if that time was spent with a wolf, at least that wolf would still be Daichi.

 

“Maybe a couple years ago I would have but I’m too old for that.”  Hajime shrugged with a grin as he glanced around the room, saw Tooru hovering around his old junior.  Tobio looked older than Tooru now but something had mellowed him out in the years since high school.  He took Tooru’s teasing easily, or easier than he had when he was 15.

 

“You sound like a grandpa.”  Daichi teased him, drawing his attention back to him.  “Back in my day we really partied it up on Halloween, not like you youngins now a day.”

 

“At least people don’t call me Dadchi.”  Hajime grinned as Daichi let out a sound of disbelief.

 

“Who says that?”  Hajime laughed as Daichi looked around, eyes narrowing on the angelic form of Suga.

 

“So,” Hajime grabbed his mug of tea to give his hands something to do.  “Do you want some company tonight?”  Hajime glanced over at Daichi.

 

“I’d really like that.”  Daichi said with a slowly growing smile that warmed up his entire face.  Hajime returned the smile, felt his ears burn as he ducked his head and snuck out of the room before Tooru could tag along.