Shizuo smirks to himself in pursuit of Izaya. Finally, the fog is lifting. He’s glad he didn't give up. The fog may impair him, means he can’t throw anything without the risk of incidentally hitting a passing child, but it impairs Izaya too, means he can’t leap from building to building like the urban Tarzan that he is. And now the fog is lifting, the gloves can come off: he can throw whatever he finds, and Izaya can run all he wants.
Izaya seems to think so too. He is standing there smirking, waiting for Shizuo to catch up.
They avoid the street with Russia Sushi with exaggerated care. Simon and Dennis had given them such a look the last time they had fought outside that Shizuo was surprised to make it out alive.
"But it brings crowds," Izaya had protested, while Shizuo had nodded along, one of the rare times he agreed with Izaya. "Which brings custom. People may like to nosh on sushi while they enjoy the show."
And the two Russians had just glared at them.
" 'No violence."
Shizuo couldn't argue with that.
Far from Russia Sushi, Shizuo picks up a vending machine. He holds it above his head, taking aim - even he trembles a little with the weight of it. He is about to hurl it when a group of girls appear between them, facing Izaya, and ask for directions in faltering Japanese.
Izaya switches to English and takes a look at the guide book they’re showing him.
Shizuo wobbles dangerously, just about managing to drop the machine before crushing himself with it.
Izaya takes no notice. He is telling the girls where to go, and they laugh at something he is saying. They ask for something else, and then they are posing in front of Sunshine City while Izaya takes their photo.
He sighs impatiently while Izaya takes shots from different angles, backing up to get as much of the mammoth building in the shot as possible. Then one of the girls trots over to him, and the process is repeated on a different phone. Shizuo is beginning to wish he'd thrown the vending machine after all.
“Arigato!” They say cheerfully, when they're finally done. Izaya waves them off.
He shrugs when he sees Shizuo glaring at him.
“Tourists,” he says. Then he takes off before Shizuo can pick up the vending machine again.
Shizuo growls, and tears after him.
They have made it out of the boring part of the city, near the overpass where Izaya will start making his way up rather than across, when the informant’s sisters appear in front of him with disconcerting speed.
“Hi, Shizuo,” they chorus.
Shizuo just barely manages to stop without plowing into them.
He looks up for Izaya desperately. The informant is too far ahead to hear them, but he seems to sense something anyway and turns back. Shizuo can tell he’s frowning.
“Hi guys, sorry, I - “
“Leave Nii-san for a minute, Shizuo,” Mairu says impatiently. “Sometimes I think you like him more than you like us.”
“No I don’t, of course I don’t, I just…”
He drifts off as they start jabbering, pretending to pay attention to something about his brother, glancing up at Izaya every few moments to check he’s still there. The informant plays on his phone, looking bored. Shizuo knows he will not stick around for long.
“So you’ll tell him?” Mairu prompts.
“Yes,” Shizuo promises, relieved, seeing his way out. “I’ll definitely tell him, as soon as I see him, I promise. Nice catching up, see you round.”
Izaya has already taken off, and Shizuo hurtles after him.
The twins stare after them for a moment.
“They’re so stupid .”
They’ve barely built up speed when it is Izaya who stops, so suddenly as if he has come upon the edge of a cliff.
Shizuo slows, too far away to see, but he gets an uneasy feeling in his stomach. In this part of the neighbourhood, it could be anything from a body to body parts.
Shizuo stops, stunned, when he gets closer. Running around Izaya’s feet are kittens. There are usually one or two cats in this part of the neighbourhood, but there are about ten of them here, spread out like they owned it, playing, napping, gromming themselves, taking up so much of the narrow alleyway that even Izaya would struggle to jump and dodge at speed without hurting them. They wind round his ankles. A couple of them spot Shizuo and trot over to him as well.
Izaya turns around awkwardly, trying not to disturb the kittens, to gauge how far away he is.
“They’re feral. They probably have diseases.”
He says this, but immediately squats and starts playing with them. Shizuo sighs. Even he can’t get violent in the presence of kittens. He sits in defeat and allows the kittens to crawl all over him.
He doesn’t know long how long he stays there, playing with the feral and diseased kittens, but a group of adult cats slink out of the shadows a little later, and the kittens immediately trot to them as if called in for dinner.
A moment later he and Izaya are alone. It takes them a moment to remember what they were supposed to be doing.
Izaya is ahead of him again, and he doesn’t sound happy.
“Now what?” Shizuo calls. The sun is setting. A fight had never taken him so long before. They are on the roof of the parking lot, where the CCTV started petering out, where Izaya would normally start the rooftop run. Shizuo catches him up and sees what the problem is.
The nearest roof - the only accessible roof from here, in fact, is occupied by some very familiar looking Yazuka in an impromptu huddle. Even Shizuo knows he and Izaya cannot disturb them. Even fighting here would make too much noise.
“ Fuck ,” Shizuo curses. He wants to kick something. “You know what, let’s just give up. Nothing is going right today. If we go somewhere else it’d probably start fucking snowing or something.”
“Agreed,” Izaya says. “Let's call it a day.”
He hoists himself up on the lot’s outer wall and sits there cross-legged, out of sight of the Yakuza.
“...what are you doing?”
“Catching my breath,” he says. “Plus, the sun is setting.”
So it is. Shizuo normally chases Izaya by day or moonlight, never in between. Shizuo also takes a seat on the wall, next to another pillar that keeps him out of sight.
He regards the world below them that they’d hurtled through and that had been pissing him off all day, now bathed in gold. The Yakuza leave, but neither of them notice. Shizuo thinks he hears Izaya sigh at one point, but he’s not sure if he’s imagined it or not.
After he's calm, he wants to say something, something that’s not violent and that won’t make Izaya laugh or sneer at him.
He turns to the other pillar, but the informant is gone. Shizuo blinks, swivelling right round, but the lot is empty.
Shizuo sighs, a deflated feeling in his chest, and watches the rest of the sunset alone.