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something there that wasn't there before

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Everyone knows that soulmates can't lie to each other.

That fact, however, has never been a problem for Kokichi Ouma. He didn't have a soulmate, of course, so why would he have to worry about that?

When he found himself stuck in the Ultimate Academy for Gifted Juveniles, he found himself in his element. An air of lies and deceit, perfect for him to thrive.

The day they arrived, he made sure to introduce himself to everyone in the same way.

"Hi! I'm Kokichi Ouma, the Ultimate Supreme Leader! I have this craaaazy big organization. We've got over ten thousand members!" That always got a scoff from the other party. Nobody believed him, of course, but that was fine. He didn't want them to anyway.


 

Kokichi was in the warehouse, playfully teasing Keebo when the two people he hadn't met yet showed up. He glanced up, and...

Wow. His breath was taken away by the gorgeous sight in front of him. There was a tolerably pretty blonde girl, which he made note of as she went off to speak to the robot, but beside her was the most gorgeous man Kokichi had ever seen. He stumbled forward, plastering a wide grin onto his face in preparation of his introduction.

"Hey there, gorgeous!" He winked, which caused the other boy to blush a bit and hide his eyes with that weird hat he was wearing. "I'm Kokichi Ouma. I'm the Ultimate Supreme Leader!"

"Ah, I'm...Shuichi Saihara. Ultimate Detective..." Oh, he was nervous! This was great. The shyer they are, the easier they are to tease, right?

"I have this great organization that I'm the leader of! There's about ten of us, but it's like a little family!" Wait, what?! 

Kokichi's eyes widened slightly. That was not what he'd planned to say. He quickly wiped all traces of shock from his face and tried again. I'll just...tell him he's kinda cute. I like how flustered he got before.

"You are the most handsome man I have ever met in my entire life." Well, fuck. That sure got Shuichi to blush, but definitely not the way he'd wanted to.

"I'm just off my game today," he thought, though he decided to just keep his mouth shut for the moment. Shuichi was visibly quite flustered, and he continued to hide his face with his hat even when the blonde girl returned. 

"Oh, Shuichi, did you make a new friend?" Already on a first name basis, huh? Something in Kokichi reared its head angrily, but he pushed it back in favor of making a two-fingered salute in the general direction of the girl.

"He said his name is Kokichi Ouma. He's the Ultimate Supreme Leader, but-"

"Stop! Dear, sweet Saihara-chan doesn't want to reveal everything about me, does he?" Kokichi winced at the panic lacing his voice, but it seemed...easier to at least hide the truth with this girl here. Shuichi was obviously taken by surprise at the sudden outburst, but he shut his mouth anyway.

Again, Kokichi decided to ignore the intrusive thoughts that came with his sudden inability to lie. He didn't have a soulmate. This was just a personal fault because he's in front of a hot guy and doesn't know how to function. Yeah, that's it.

He came back to reality when a hand was waved in front of his face. Ah, he spaced out again. 

"Did you hear anything I said?" The girl crossed her arms over her chest in annoyance, and Kokichi shook his head no, even though he meant to say something else. She sighed, pinching the bridge of her nose before speaking again.

"I'm Kaede Akamatsu, the Ultimate Pianist," she said, the exasperation clear in her tone. "You're not a very good listener, are you?"

"I was just-" No. He bit his bottom lip harshly to avoid continuing that thought. Since he couldn't seem to lie it off, he just shrugged and turned away, determined to just haul ass out of that warehouse and go scream into a pillow or something.

He skipped out of the warehouse, whistling an old tune that he didn't even remember the name of. He'd deal with that issue later, if it ever came up again.


 

It came up again. Time after time, Kokichi would try to lie to the detective, only to find himself blurting out the truth. 

Eventually, he did resign himself to the knowledge that his worst fears were coming true. Kokichi did have a soulmate, but it seemed that said soulmate was just...destined to hate him.

That was fine. He didn't deserve anything more, after all. He was nothing but a deceitful trickster, and Shuichi deserved more.

He bounded into the cafeteria, his absolutely fake grin plastered on like the mask it was. Catching sight of Shuichi, he skipped over.

"Good morning, my beloved! How did you sleep?" 

"Terribly." The response seemed to take Shuichi by surprise, and he slapped his hand over his mouth reflexively. Kokichi felt a pang of worry in his chest. He glanced around, seeing the rest of the table looking in their direction, and he frowned a bit. He motioned for Shuichi to go to a more private corner, though he didn't say a word as to why. Though confused, Shuichi complied, and the two moved to a corner mostly hidden from the eyes and ears of the others.

"Have you been having bad dreams, Saihara-chan?" Kokichi's tone was light, but there was an unmistakable hint of concern. Shuichi seemed to hesitate, grappling with himself, but he eventually nodded. Up close, the dark circles under his eyes were quite prominent.

Shuichi bit his bottom lip before speaking. "Why can't I hide anything from you? I don't feel like you should be trusted, but yet I still do." He winced at his own words, but Kokichi understood. 

He also knew that if he opened his mouth, the truth would inevitably come spilling out, so he just shrugged. Of course, Shuichi didn't buy it. He frowned, crossing his arms and raising an eyebrow as if to say 'just spit it out.'

Kokichi hesitated, but eventually spoke up. "My dear Saihara-chan doesn't know? What's the one thing in the universe that keeps two people from lying to each other?" The question took a few moments to sink in, but when it did, Shuichi's face flushed a brilliant shade of crimson. 

He spluttered for a few moments, waving his hands vaguely between the two of them. It made Kokichi giggle a bit, and reached out to grab one of the flailing hands and hold it. 

The touch seemed to settle Shuichi down, but he still looked unsure. "You're saying we're..." He trailed off, but Kokichi nodded. 

"Yeah, we are. Are you okay with it?"

Shuichi made a soft noise of complaint at the direct question and looked down as he answered. "I'm absolutely okay with it. I've liked you since the moment we met."

That was the truth, Kokichi supposed. That was the truth for him, as well, and he figured there was no point in hiding it anymore. He'd be found out anyway, so it might as well be on his own terms.

"Yeah, I feel the same about you." Shuichi glanced up at his words, something shimmering in his golden eyes that hadn't been there before. 

And as Kokichi looked into those eyes, a genuine smile found its way onto his lips. Maybe there was some hope in this place after all.