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Glittering Youth

Chapter Text


 

 

Can I be Him

 

 

Yuuri watched as the silver hair wrapped around the lithe form, gracefully settling at his hips.  The youth on the screen lifted his eyes, startlingly blue and Yuuri gasped in realization that maybe he wasn’t ace.  “Phichit, can I go to jail for these thoughts?”

 

His roommate chuckled as he took a swig from the beer they had smuggled into their room, both were underage according to U.S. standards but they never would let such things stop them.  “He’s only a year younger than me.  I think he turns seventeen soon, in fact.”

 

Yuuri chewed on his lip thoughtfully.   Seventeen.   I’ll be twenty-one at the end of November, though.   “Maybe we should be friends first,” he said under his breath.

 

Of course , Phichit thought, listening and giggled quietly.  “Perhaps.  I mean, there are worse foundations for a relationship.”

 




Grand Prix Final - Goyang, S. Korea - December 11-13, 2008

 

It wasn’t until the following year that Yuuri would receive the opportunity to try.  Victor was just shy of eighteen the first time they faced each other on the ice.  Yuuri spotted the nervous teen after the skate, watching as the boy’s gruff coach systematically critiqued the program delivery and elements as they walked down the hall towards him.  Victor stopped, his breath catching at the sight of Yuuri’s regard.  He blushed, and if Yuuri hadn’t been charmed before, he was now.  He stepped forward towards the youth who glanced hesitantly towards Yakov before falling away from his side.

 

“Hello,” Yuuri murmured fighting his own shyness and anxiety but needing to speak to this beautiful person.

 

“H-hi,” Victor stammered, his cheeks pink, shy uncertainty filtering through his actions as his fingers flitted around self-consciously before settling on his hair.

 

“I’m Yuuri Katsuki,” Yuuri introduced.

 

The other man nodded playing with the end of his ponytail.  “I-I know.  I’m Victor Nikiforov.”

 

“We hadn’t met as of yet, but I noticed your skating when you took the gold in the Junior Grand Prix Final then again at Junior Worlds,” Yuuri continued, uncertain if he was being too forward but pushing his anxiety back into the recesses of his mind.

 

The youth glanced down, studying his shoes.  “I am worried I’ve peaked.  I can’t seem to get anything right,” he admitted self-consciously.

 

Yuuri considered his words.  “You’ve grown in the last year and are probably still growing.”  Victor confirmed with a nod.  Yuuri smiled warmly.  “Don’t be discouraged.  I remember when I went through my growth spurt.  Every time I put on a pair of skates something felt off.  So…I danced.  Dancing before skating helped me to find my center of gravity once more…and it is more forgiving than the ice.”

 

“Oh, thank you!” Victor’s eyes looked up with gratitude.  “I didn’t know that.  I kept wondering why I couldn’t find my feet.”

 

“I’m surprised your coach hasn’t told you this,” Yuuri commented with a raised eyebrow.

 

Victor shrugged.  “He might have.  I’ve been…distracted lately.  Finishing up with high school and such.”

 

Yuuri smiled encouragingly.  “If you like, we can keep in touch.  Sometimes we are more comfortable talking to someone closer to our own age.”

 

Victor’s eyes widened.  “You don’t mind?”

 

“Not at all,” he answered handing his phone over, open to contacts screen.  Victor quickly filled in his information and handed it back to the other man.  Yuuri smiled as he spotted the bunny he placed next to his name.

 

“I’ve got to get back to my coach.  Thank you.”  The smile that touched the boy’s lips seemed to reach his eyes and lighten his steps.

 

“Of course.”  Yuuri watched him go then quickly typed an introductory text to the younger man.

 

Yuuri/ I enjoyed talking to you.  Let’s climb up the podium together.

 

Pressing send he watched Victor draw out his phone and glance back his direction, his eyes lit up with promise and a smile finding its place once more on the younger man’s lips.

 

Friendship .  It’s a start.

 





Yuuri/ Happy 18 th birthday!

 

Victor/ I can’t believe you remembered!

 

Yuuri/ I sent you a present.  I don’t think it had time to arrive.

 

Victor/ Really?!!!  I can’t wait!  Thank you!

 

Yuuri/ My pleasure!

 

Yuuri stared at his phone with a smile as he walked to the rink.  It would be deserted.  Christmas Day in the states meant family and gifts and large meals.  He and Phichit would join their coach and a few other rink mates later but for now, he would skate while he thought about a boy across the ocean.

 




Two days later…

 

Victor/ It came!  Did you make this card?

 

Yuuri/ Yes.  I have a few talents other than skating.  ;-)

 

Victor/ It’s beautiful!  So detailed.

 

Yuuri/ Thank you.

 

Victor/ It’s a bunny!  My mother, she always called me her bunny!  She always bought me bunnies for my birthday.

 

Victor/ I’m overwhelmed!  Thank you.

 

Yuuri/ I didn’t know that about your mother.  I just wanted to send you something and the bunny made me think of you because of how you entered your name.

 

Victor/ {Photo of Victor hugging the bunny}

 

Victor/ I love it!  So very thoughtful!

 

Yuuri/ You’re welcome.

 

Friendship .  The picture reminded Yuuri that there was a lot of child left in the boy.   I have time.

 




Over the next month…

 

Victor/ I can’t seem to land my 4S this week.

 

Yuuri/ Don’t injure yourself.  Dance and work through your balance.  Do you have a harness?

 

Victor/ *pout* Yes.  Yakov has been pushing me to use it.

 

Yuuri/ Do it!  I still do when I’m trying to work through a new jump.

 

Victor/ Okay…I will.

 




Victor/ {Video of 4S on harness}

 




Yuuri/ {Video of 4Lo on harness}

 




Victor/  Wait!  You’re just working on your 4Lo?

 

Yuuri/ Jumps don’t come easy to me.

 

Victor/ I picked up my triples easily.  Yakov says I have the height for quads on most.  Just…balance.

 

Yuuri/ And without balance, you eat ice.

 

Victor/ Too many times.






Victor/ {Picture of Victor and Makkachin}

 

Victor/ Rest day.

 

Yuuri/ Wish I could say the same.  What are you doing today?

 

Victor/ Taking Makkachin on a long walk then playing in the park.

 

Yuuri/ Are you going with friends?

 

Victor/ No.  I don’t really have anyone I’m close to.

 

Yuuri/ I’m close to Phichit here.  He’s my new roommate.  Celestino thought I needed one because I don’t make friends easily.

 

Victor/ I had a couple of friends at school.  Most people find me overwhelming.

 

Yuuri/ How so?

 

Victor/ I’m high strung.  Too much energy.

 

Yuuri/ I’m shy.  And I have anxiety that really kicks in when I’m around new people.

 

Victor/ You talked to me.

 

Yuuri/ I almost didn’t.

 

Victor/ I’m glad that you did.

 

Yuuri/ Me, too.