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Light, Like the Flutter of Wings

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Akutagawa still wasn’t used to the feeling of Chuuya’s hand in his. Chuuya’s fingers were rough and callused like his own, but his skin was warm. The way he occasionally caressed the back of Akutagawa’s hand with his thumb sent shivers through him. It was embarrassing how even such a small thing could be so intense, could send heat rushing into his cheeks. He knew Chuuya found it endearing, but it was still rather mortifying. Every brush of their skin, sometimes even mere eye contact, had Akutagawa reeling.

It had been a month since Chuuya had shown up at the door of Akutagawa’s office to ask him out. Akutagawa still didn’t quite understand why — he had nothing to offer someone of Chuuya’s caliber. Still, for some reason, words of agreement had tumbled from his mouth even as panic rose in his chest. Or at least, that was how he interpreted his frantic heartbeat.

Chuuya had been a perfect gentleman, taking him to a fancy restaurant, pulling out his chair, explaining anything on the menu Akutagawa didn’t know about without making him feel stupid. He’d been nothing but kind and considerate, and had told Akutagawa from the beginning that there would be no hierarchy between them. That he was absolutely free to turn Chuuya down without any consequences whatsoever, now or in the future.
Akutagawa believed him. Which was why his own acceptance to go on a second date, and then a third, had confused him at first.

In the weeks since, he had begun to notice things about himself. Anytime Chuuya was near, Akutagawa could feel his presence much more acutely than that of other people, and he realized that this was not a new thing. It had been that way for months, possibly years. His gaze would always be drawn to the executive, to the way his hair gleamed, to the slant of his smirk, the dare in his eyes. Watching Chuuya train and fight was mesmerizing. He had a grace and fluidity of movement Akutagawa could only dream of. And if, sometimes, his gaze had lingered on the definition of Chuuya’s bare torso, well. Anyone would look, right? It didn’t mean anything. Or so he had thought, blissfully ignoring every clue his body tried to send to his brain. Chuuya was strong, in body and mind, and Akutagawa respected and admired strength. It was only natural, then, to admire his superior. There was nothing odd about noting details of Chuuya’s mannerisms and habits that Akutagawa never bothered to look for in other people.

What an idiot he was. After a month, it was time to admit that Chuuya’s mere presence made his brain go haywire, jumbling his words and confusing his every move. Coherent thought and action were nearly impossible at times. His nerve-endings fired off so many impressions — the brilliance of Chuuya’s eyes, the warmth of his smile, the mischievous curl of his lips, the rumble of his voice — that it was hard to keep up with everything.

Other times, there were moments of quiet as they sat together in Chuuya’s office, enjoying a cup of tea or a glass of something stronger, when Akutagawa was comfortable in a way that felt foreign and familiar all at once. Peaceful. The need to prove himself gone, the voice telling him that he was never enough silenced for a few hours. It was a type of bliss he had only known intermittently in his life, when he was with Gin, or when he was lost in a particularly good book.

Or at times like now, when he was engrossed in a fight. Few mafia members presented a true challenge to him, which was part of the reason why he liked to throw himself headfirst into as many missions and against as many enemies as he could. However, today Chuuya had asked him to spar.
He really should have thought this through better before agreeing. Chuuya in a tank top was terribly distracting. Akutagawa was just glad that at least Chuuya wasn’t barechested, or else he’d be absolutely useless.

As it was, the fight was fun. Chuuya came at him so hard that he was soon too busy to waste time thinking about his own awkwardness. Chuuya’s speed was unparalleled, and the force of his punches nearly cracked Rashoumon’s shields several times. Chuuya’s feral grin was infectious. Akutagawa felt himself mirroring the expression, matching Chuuya hit for hit. They fell into a rhythm that was at least half instinct — if Akutagawa took the time to properly think about it, he would never be able to keep up.

When Chuuya used his ability to float upwards out of Rashoumon’s range, Akutagawa lashed out immediately. He had Rashoumon wrap around Chuuya’s ankle and give a harsh pull downwards. The one-sided force knocked Chuuya off balance, and Akutagawa sent out more tendrils to pin Chuuya’s arms to his sides. Chuuya’s face as he struggled was almost comical. He exerted considerable force to tear himself away from Akutagawa’s hold, but Akutagawa pulled with all his might.

He should have known what was coming as soon as he saw Chuuya’s smirk. The executive stopped resisting. It was as though Akutagawa had fired a slingshot at himself. Drawn in by Rashoumon’s power, Chuuya shot towards him at high speed. Ryuunosuke shut his eyes and braced himself for impact.

Instead of the full body punch he had expected, soft fingers caressed his cheekbone. He blinked open his eyes. Chuuya was hovering in front of him at eye-level, Rashoumon still loosely draped around his body. His eyes shone with soft admiration.
“You really would have let yourself get tackled,” he said.
“Yes.”

Chuuya’s hold shifted, hand sliding into Ryuunosuke’s hair, to the back of his head.
“Can I…?” His lids lowered, gaze straying down to Ryuunosuke’s lips. Chuuya’s mere attention was enough to make them tingle.
Heart in his throat, the dark-haired man could do nothing but nod.
Chuuya leaned in slowly, angling his face. His nose brushed against Ryuunosuke’s and he closed his eyes, unable to stand the intimacy of gazing into Chuuya’s at such close proximity. He felt the warmth of Chuuya’s breath before he felt the touch of his lips. The kiss was soft, innocent. Barely more than a slide of lips against each other. Ryuunosuke still felt it shoot all through his body and was unable to help the shiver going down his spine, or the way he trembled in Chuuya’s arms. Instinctively, Rashoumon pulled Chuuya closer.
Chuuya chuckled, then pressed his lips against Ryuunosuke’s once more. This time, the touch was firmer. Chuuya’s lips were plump and soft, lightly moving over Ryuunosuke’s own. He gasped when Chuuya nibbled on his bottom lip, then returned the favor when Chuuya retreated.

By the time Chuuya pulled back for good, Ryuunosuke was melting, knees unsteady and cheeks on fire. He did not feel mortified, though. When Chuuya released his ability and let his feet touch the ground, his knees nearly buckled. There was no need for embarrassment while lying in each others’ arms, hearts filled with laughter and tenderness.