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Of Family Jewels and Zenitsu's

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i. 14

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“Eh?”

“Eh.”

Two pairs of eyes bulge out, staring at each other from across the frame of the shaken princess. Upper lips pressed over lower lips petulantly, both demon slayer and shinobi take in the sight of each other for a good amount of time, equally befuddled.

Zenitsu is the first to break.

“WHO THE HELL ARE YOU?!”

He shrieks as another demon crashes in right through the paper doors the princess’s guards had been stupid enough to implement. Heart nearly flying out of his throat, Zenitsu swings his sword up to deflect – and by some miracle, manages to do so.

The demon slayer is panting furiously, eyes wide, blood vessels and all stretched within them as he shifts his swimming ambers over to the mahogany-eyed shinobi over at the other side of the room.

“Are you okay?” He is gently cradling the princess he is carrying in those typical western bridal carry.

“Y-Yes.” There’s even flowers popping up all over the princess’s flushing face! GOD DAMN IT!

What kind of tyranny is this?! What kind of unfairness of the life is this?! Why can’t Zenitsu be the one right there, faced by the sparkly eyed expression the princess is currently wearing?! Some! One! Tell! Him! Why!

“Kyaah!” Zenitsu lets out another shrill shriek as he leaps and bends strangely to avoid a curved attack. “N-N-N-N-N-No more—I-I can’t handle anymore—”

Both Zenitsu’s heart and teeth and sword are clattering, goddamn it!

“Oi! The shinobi bastard over there! Who the hell are you and why the hell are you stealing my thunder?! I’m begging you—HIIIIH!Do something about these bastards…!” Zenitsu whimpers as he waves his toothpick of a sword at the darned thing that just attacked him.

“Hm?” The shinobi looks over his shoulder. “What are you talking about?”

Eh?

The shinobi points a finger at him.

“You are a demon slayer, aren’t you? You were hired to slay the demons that are after the princess. So do your job already and stop being such a whiny, hissy cunt about it.”

Gasp. Even Zenitsu’s mucus which has previously been hanging out from his nose goes sucking back into his nose at the harsh words of this guy.

How daring. How intimidating. His sweat practically goes evaporating too, and—No, as if he’s going to take this shit lying down.

“Good riddance. Let’s get you to safety already, alright—” The shinobi is turning back to talk to the princess nicely, when Zenitsu grabs him by the back of his shirt and swings his feet into his face with all the speedy breath of thunder to send him sailing.

The princess screams at the breaking furniture as Zenitsu lays her gingerly on her feet.

“No. YOU CLEARLY DON’T GET THE FEAR OF DEMONS IF YOU’RE SHOVING THEM SO EASILY ON ME, YOU HEARTLESS SKINHEAD!” Zenitsu jabs a finger in the other boy’s face, one hand protectively pulling the princess in, because – that’s obviously something at play here.

It doesn’t stop Zenitsu’s knees from buckling or his eyes and face from filling with tears though, even as he tries to look tough in front of the fairer sex.

“Do you know how scary demons are?! Or how weak I am for that matter?! Don’t you understand that you've literally just tossed me in death’s grip?! How can you do that to a man while he’s down?! What kind of heartless, cruel man are you?! WAAAAAH, WE’RE ALL GOING TO DIEEEEEE!!!” Zenitsu wails aloud, holding his head.

Even the princess is hovering, trying to comfort him.

“You…” A piece of wood drops off to the ground as the muscular skinhead rises to his feet. Zenitsu stops crying abruptly. “You…”

Knuckles crack.

“Haaah………!!!” Zenitsu is drained of all colour when he takes a peek at the shinobi smiling at him, mahogany eyes dilated with veins and all.

“…You’re dead.” The shinobi hisses.

“HYAAAAAH!!!” Zenitsu screeches, picking up the princess on his back and – momentarily melting into a fluff at the feel of the ‘boing’ on his back – Wait. No time to enjoy this now. He needs to run away from the more imminent threat.

“How can you be so cruel, you hideous bastard?!” Zenitsu shrieks at the shinobi later as he’s fleeing, eyes wide and veins bulging from his now tearless eyes. “It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity! All men should enjoy it! And yet…! You…! How can you deprive me of such bliss?!!!!”

Rage powers up Zenitsu. Thus, Zenitsu goes up to four times faster than his usual speed, outrunning the shinobi.

This is alternatively a tale of the meeting of the future Sound and Thunder Pillar. A terrifying tale passed down the generations to come, of an exorcist and a banshee who set the mansion on fire, leaving a trail of slayed corpses behind them. Only the princess will be there to fondly recount the actual events involving a chivalrous shinobi and cowardly demon slayer, but who’s to say she is telling the truth?

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ii. 16

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The next time Agatsuma Zenitsu runs into him, it is a bi-annual pillars’ meeting. 

“IT’S YOU!” Zenitsu shrieks, enraged, abandoning all etiquette the moment he sees that guy standing right in front of him, beside the Oyakata, and more importantly, smiling smugly down at Zenitsu whilst standing where Zenitsu is bowing to.

Zenitsu rises up into a standing posture on instinct, even as he ignores the rough smack of his Gramps’ hand over his head. (Gramps here is attending as an advisor for the Thunder Pillar as this is still his first year of tenure. But more importantly--) Zenitsu glares up at those smug mahogany eyes, ignoring the other pillars’ wondering eyes. He jabs his pointer finger, unyielding, unafraid, and more than that, accusing in all the action.

“Don’t think I’ve forgiven for your actions.” Veins practically bulge in either sides of Zenitsu’s head with how hard he’s glaring. “You’ve ruined a man’s romance because of your petty grudge. Don’t think I’ve forgotten how you abandoned me to the wolves!”

The shinobi angles his head upwards.

Hiiiiiih! Zenitsu’s practically boiling over with rage! Such a small action – even that arrogant slight tilt of his nose upwards at him makes him irritated!

“Don’t think I’ve forgiven you too.” The shinobi – the New Pillar, add Zenitsu’s hissing effect to that – says. A series of gasps run through the crowd at the ‘cordial’ middle finger the shinobi brandishes at him. “You tossed me into a table. You challenged me to understand your fear of demons. Well, I’m here. And look. I’m still unafraid.” He smirks.

“How juvenile are you?” Zenitsu returns in a pointed deadpan, shoulders slumping with a blank look up at the other on the engawa. (‘You must be dumb’, it speaks to the twitching Uzui.) “What are you anyways? Three? Five? Because if you’re the same age as me, that’s got to be some premature balding that you have there. Your attitude suggests you’re probably senile though.”

A vein pops on the shinobi’s head. He pulls the bandages off of his skinhead and – wow. Look. He’s got hair. Impressive.

“I. Am. Not. Bald!” The shinobi seethes, eyes glaring as dark as the abyss. Now, normally, this would be enough to make Zenitsu afraid. However—Today, he must be feeling mighty pissed still from the Princess Incident because he goes on to snort with a theatrical snicker that he muffles most patronizingly, eyes looking down, one mocking quirk of his lips slipping. 

“Yeah, right. White.

Veins pop in the shinobi’s head. They unsheathe their blades in ready to battle. The Oyakata chuckles and remarks on how happy he is that they’re getting along as the other pillars and advisors join the fray to pull apart the two feisty pillars.

Zenitsu will neverNEVER! – get along with Uzui Tengen.

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iii. 18

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Their rivalry grows to be a fearsome one within the Demon Slayer Corps. The last time Zenitsu checked, apparently, even the wisteria houses now know of their reputation. It had come to him as a massive shock when one wisteria house shut its doors abruptly upon seeing him. It had opened only shortly thereafter when Kanae, who he was doing the mission with, came within view.

“You there. We are able to take you in though.” The old lady had said.

Zenitsu stared at them plaintively with a look that spelled out a desolate, miserable, “Why.”

“Uzui-kun probably is in there. Are you sure you will really like to be with him?” Beautiful gorgeous Kanae sang out in her lilting voice as she brushed passed his shoulders and skipped forward into the wisteria house of the shifty-eyed old lady.

Zenitsu’s face had gone black at once.

Again, it’s Uzui!

Wherever he goes, it’s almost as if that guy’s coming back to bite him in the ass!

Skip over town to get some sushi cravings satisfied at the seaport village? Uzui is there.

Go back to the estate and check in on some of his demon slayers? Uzui has been there.

Go on a long-term mission somewhere far away where he probably won’t run into Uzui? Freaking Uzui is still there.

“What is it with him?! Why is he following me everywhere?! Doesn’t he get that I deserve a break from him as much as I do the demons?!”

Zenitsu cries over a cup of sake at the sushi restaurant (because such is the woe of a travelling demon slayer without friends).

“I’m going to die for god’s sake on the next mission! I know I definitely am! Somebody, come and pity and comfort me please!!!” Zenitsu wails and begs at the counter whilst being patted under the gentle tousling hand of a waitress.

It’s only moments later that freaking Uzui appears again, dressed in an unusual kimono and out of his shinobi attire, wrinkling his nose still at this unseemly sight.

“What’s with you?!” Zenitsu roars out at the still, blanching look he’s given. He hugs his large bottle of sake closer to himself. “Why are you looking at me like that?! You’re all a bunch of freaking bastards, you guys are!”

He waves a drunken finger at the multiple copies of the shinobi.

“You’re fucking pathetic.” Uzui sighs. Oh, that just stabs an arrow into his heart, doesn’t it?

Zenitsu goes quiet when he is carried single-handedly over Uzui’s shoulder, which has grown to become one monstrous chunk of muscle in the years that passed. He sniffles, snot drying up with his tears.

“…What’s with you. Being all kind like this.” Zenitsu whimpers into Uzui’s kimono, quietened.

“Miss. Thank you for taking care of this piece of trash. I’ll take him out to the dumpster now.” Uzui places a wad of cash in the flustered waitress’s hands.

And that, of course, pisses Zenitsu out. He swings his feet down at Uzui’s inhuman chocolate bar abs with his speedy, powerful breath of thunder-infused feet. Uzui makes a hurt grunt “OMPFH!!!” when Zenitsu’s coincidentally, primely located kick connects with one very sensitive place. Zenitsu’s amber eyes go wide, suddenly trembling - very much sober - and shaking free of his falling hair whilst Uzui crumples, holds him tight by the thighs, and gently lowers Zenitsu down to his feet to just… curl up. Right there. Right then. Zenitsu takes a couple steps back.

“H-Hold on. I-I didn’t mean to do that—” And sure, Zenitsu is just going to defend himself when he bends down to survey the damage. But—

Holy shit. Is that Uzui Tengen crying?

Zenitsu gasps, eyes blanking with his mind despite raised hands.

He’s fucked this time round. For sure.

“…Y-Y—” Uzui’s voice dies out in another pained moan. His extremely strong fingers crawl over the wood of the counter. Zenitsu’s voice dies out all the more in the back of his throat, incapable of even screech, as he spots wood cracking, all the way up to three metres from them. The waitress lets out a high-pitched hiccup of a shriek, muffling her own mouth. “You—”

Mahogany. Eyes. Painedpainedpainedpainedpained – scaryscaryscaryscary—

“D-Don’t—” Zenitsu’s voice finally comes back to him. He takes one step back. Sees the questioning look in Uzui’s eyes amidst the pain. And – he spins around and races the hell outta there. “DON’T KILL ME, PLEAAAAASEEEE!”

“Come back!” He hears roared after him.

Zenitsu raises his hands in surrender even as he runs all the way with waterfall tears trailing down his face. Come say hallelujah to death! At least maybe in death, he doesn’t have to deal with all these pillar responsibilities and demon slaying!

But for some reason, Uzui doesn’t come after him this time.

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iv. 19

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Kanae dies. Shihan loses a limb. Urokodaki resigns. They’re still down by two freaking pillars from before. And Uzui decides to go on an impromptu vacation.

Zenitsu will take apart his bones one by one and he’ll listen to his explanation thereafter.

Unsurprisingly, it’s as if hell’s decided to rain down upon them this demon season. (That’s slayer speak for winters, if you weren’t aware, you dumbass.) Hail and winter. One pillar covering the work for two each. Somebody up there had better be keeping track of Zenitsu’s good deeds. He doesn’t think he can handle one more pillar’s paperwork in addition to the four others he’s doing. Why is he the Thunder Pillar such a pushover and bullied into paperwork by others anyways?!

Maybe, it could just be because Kanae was a really sweet girl. And Shinazugawa is scary as hell. And Urokodaki just somehow tricked him into it.

“I’ll leave it to you, Youngster.” Urokodaki’s shoulder pat now feels a billion times heavier.

What ‘I’ll leave it to you’? What had he left with him? His assets? The pillars’ sanity? Aha. What is he saying? Urokodaki must be referring to the lack thereof. It’d be nice if Urokodaki had left his successor with him, because Zenitsu really needs a kind human being right now!

“Somebody… Anyone… Is there anyone out there…?” Zenitsu bemoans.

Zenitsu’s current situation is like this:

One Happy-go-Lucky Thunder Pillar decides to take a tea break off his and four other pillars’ paperwork. Well. It’s not too bad. It’s just exchanging his soul for taking break off the field which other pillars now have to work triply hard to cover. But lo-and-behold, he runs into a freaking lower first moon who uses elemental attacks down by the edge of the city.

Now, consider his unpreparedness with nothing but his sword and a tea leaf. Consider the Thunder Pillar’s frequent race for the door to escape both hell (fieldwork) and heaven (paperwork). He’d somehow managed to scrape together a plan to defeat the demon, but the Earth and Water Demons managed to make a mess of him, and now, he’s tied down to the base of a pitfall by freaking weeds of all things. And the water still spilling in from the river drainage’s coming up at him from within.

It’s fully certain now.

Zenitsu smiles blissfully, putting his hands together fully in zen mode.

There’s no reinforcement coming. He’s going to die.

………………

“NO! I DON’T WANNA DIE YET! HEEEELP!! SOMEBODY! ANYBODY! IS THERE ANYONE UP THERE!? *gurglegurglegurgle*”

“Still looking as pathetic as usual, Blondie.” Comes a familiar voice from above.

Zenitsu’s eyes bulge when he sees him crouching over the edge.

“YOU!” He shrieks, not unlike the first time they got reunited.

“What an awful lot of mess you’re in, aren’t ya?” Uzui deadpans. “Go on. Say something flattering if you want the great me to grandiosely save you.”

Uzui pauses, waiting. Zenitsu gives him one long deliberating look while the water level’s climbing up to his nostril. He turns his head away, unable to bear continue looking at the size of this man’s ego, and Uzui bursts out.

“Oh, come on! Do you really want to die that much?! Well! Go die for all I care!”

Zenitsu sputter at the dirt he kicks into the pitfall. This… Zenitsu exhales furiously out of his nostrils, eyes wide. This infuriating man really is heartless!

“Your…shoe is tied really neatly.” Zenitsu looks away after Uzui leans in with a cupped ear, squeezing his eyes in pain at this blatant lie. Why does he have to compliment a single thing on this man, for hell’s sake…?!

“What kind of compliment is that.” Uzui deadpans, squatting back down in enrapt attention.

“SHUT UP! YOU WERE THE ONE WHO WANTED ME TO SAY IT!” Zenitsu jabs an accusing finger at him.

“Well, yeah. Do you really want those to be your last words before you go?” Uzui digs his ear with a pinky, smirking languidly down at him. This man… really has got to be this world’s worst.

“Your muscles are really inhuman!” Zenitsu tries again.

“Put a little more buck into it, will ya?” Fuck. You.

“That eye tattoo of yours looks ridiculous but cool!” Urgh! It pains Zenitsu so much just to think about it!

“That’s not really complimenting a thing about me!” Uzui calls down.

“Your family jewels have gotta be worth something.” Zenitsu grudgingly admits. “They’re so big.” 

Uzui pauses for a second. He levels down a brilliant smile at Zenitsu.

“You’ve got that right, at least.”

One explosion and a usage of his blades later, Zenitsu crawls up onto ground level, coughing and sputtering at the water that drenches them both.

“You…” Zenitsu glares weakly at the smug Sound Pillar now swinging and sheathing his connected swords. “…You are absolutely the worst.”

He drops his head down on the ground. He’s dead. Count him dead to the world. Don’t bother to revive him.

Amber eyes shift drearily, following the motions of taped hakama edges as Uzui walks over to crouch down by his head. Zenitsu stares blankly when he is picked up by the head and by a less than kind palm.

“…I’ll freaking kill you when I’m able to move again, you little fucker.” Zenitsu curses out at him, ambers wide and veins bulging in the corners of his face. “What the hell did you just make me spit out. Where in the seven realms of hell have you been this whole time. Do you know how many people’s worth of paperwork I’ve been handling – oomph!”

Zenitsu is unceremoniously dropped to the ground.

All the more reason to seek revenge when he isn’t so utterly drained of sleep and adrenaline and hurting all over.

“I was summoned back home by my Pops.” Uzui lays a hand in a palm propped up by his elbow as he peers into the distance. “Got engaged to three kunoichi sometime without me knowing. I broke it off, because obviously, they deserve better than me.”

THREE KUNOICHI?! THREE WIVES?!” Zenitsu’s practically bleeding from the eyes at the thought of it. He writhes. He wants so badly to reach and claw this man’s throat out. He doesn’t know how lucky he is. “WHY DID YOU REJECT THEM?! HOW COULD YOU REJECT THEM?! YOU COULD AT LEAST HAVE PASSED ONE OF THEM TO ME, YOU WIMP! ARE YOU EVEN A MAN?!”

“Oi. That wasn’t what you were saying before.” Uzui deadpans down at him. He reaches up and taps the Uzui family crystals attached to his headband.

“I’ve got some nice ‘family jewels’, remember?” Uzui snidely reminds and sneers mockingly as Zenitsu grinds his teeth and tries his best to punch the lights out of the other. Nope. He can’t muster a single fart or movement.

“Anyways. As for why I’m still here,” Uzui pauses, running mahogany eyes over him. He smiles. “I just enjoy this sort of life better.”

Zenitsu goes limp. He stares back piteously at the other man in awful silence, remembering the last time he saw him. Uzui makes a humming sound in question and quirks a brow down at him.

“...I didn’t know you were such a sucker for pain—”

“I think you better shut this mouth of yours now.” Uzui pops a vein, slapping a hand over Zenitsu’s face.

Zenitsu keeps his gaze averted pointedly from the direction of Uzui’s crotch and nods jerkily. Who the hell knows what else this pervert might do to him if he doesn’t listen?

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v. 23

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It’s a sad, sad day you know, when Zenitsu has to intervene to save the day.

“Why didn’t you defeat the demon within the first second?! How could you make me have to lift my sword and fight?! Do you know how scary that was?!” Zenitsu shakes freaking Uzui by the cuff of his shirt.

“For heavens’ sake, you’re a goddamn pillar.” Uzui deadpans as he’s shaken. “Just learn to deal with it already.”

Zenitsu puts his head close to him, red veined eyes wide and boring into his soul.

“I will smack it into you for the millionth time, that I’m a coward and I’m a wimp of a fighter.” He utters, slow and in a dark whisper. “I’m not the strong person you think I am. Learn to accommodate me already. Protect me with your life, or I’ll die a second in.” Every word is gravely serious.

“You pansy,” Uzui rolls his eyes when a fussy and worried Tanjirou enters their peripheral sights. Zenitsu blinks at the rough pat he feels on his back from the muscular arm still slung around him. “Whatever, alright? This is lameass timing and all, but I’ll protect you with my life. Make sure you stay close to me from now on.”

Amber eyes bulge before they blank at the kiss that’s planted on his lips.

“Agatsuma-sa—” Tanjirou freezes where he’s been calling him.

His boar-headed friend freezes where he’s been catching up.

Even Uzui’s goddamned kunoichis-supposed-to-be-wives freeze up where they’ve been standing on the rooftops, arm still in mid-wave frozen solid.

Zenitsu’s fully stiffened when he feels a wet warmth swipe against his lips, gruffly seeking for permission. He wants to scream in – in horror? In fear?! This can’t be love!!!!!!!! – as he unwittingly lets his jaw hang slackened, amber eyes going hollow with shock as the rival of his life smooches the hell outta him, lips that he’d seen lick his bloody kunai mouthing at him and all.

Zenitsu is frozen stiff when Uzui pulls back.

His mind has been blown to god knows what other universes there is.

At Uzui’s smug smirk and a mocking wipe at his lips, Zenitsu’s cheeks colour in realization of what has been done to him.

“I… I like women.”

“There’s ‘men’ in ‘women’.” Uzui answers.

“I like boobs. And thighs. And bums.” Zenitsu lists out facts that he knows dictates his life without really thinking. He’s incapable of thought at the moment. No thanks to this bastard.

“Well, sucks to be you. Unless you like my chest, you’re going to have to be the nice and soft one in this relationship.”

Zenitsu’s face colours unwittingly. His eyes flash down to Uzui’s man boobs and he realizes, with belated horror, how he’s grown comfortable enough with this freak of nature to lie on top of him where he’s hauled Uzui over to, the warm weight of the arm snug where it’s around him.

Each and every insinuation of Uzui’s words are only now hitting him full on. Taking a step back, Zenitsu prepares to swivel on his feet—

“GUH-!” – Only to flinch and whimper when a knee comes up against him, sending him collapsing down on the ground.

“Y-You… You bastard…” Zenitsu looks up at the other, practically in tears.

“Like you’re any better, you hypocrite.” Uzui snarks. It’s absolutely terrifying when he grins, lifting his hand to squeeze down on Zenitsu’s shoulder. “Come on. I’ve been waiting for close to four years. There’s no way you’re this freaking oblivious. That’s why… You and me are now going to find somewhere to sit down. And we’re going to talk.”

Zenitsu can only whimper pitifully as Uzui picks him up.

There are shouts and there are shrieks and Zenitsu tries multiple times to make a dash for it. But in the end, they spill their hearts out – with class, like the adults you know they are – and they get together. No more details for you nosy people, you got that?

(“We are practically married anyways.” Was the most convincing reason, said with a shrug. But next to that—)

(“Feel my boobs.”

“What kind of play are you into now—” Zenitsu shuts up when his hand is pulled up to Uzui’s chest. His mouth drops open in awe. “It’s – It’s warm, like my mommy’s tummy.”

Uzui’s mahoganies bulge. He whacks the Thunder Pillar over the head.

“Who the hell focuses on that?!” He screeches. “Focus on the softness! The softness! Are you sure you are really into women—” Uzui makes a face at the other.)

In the end, they have some hard and fun times. Uzui puts a ring on him. Literally… and well. Just maybe, *ahem* the other way as well. (Yes, it’s exactly the way you’re imagining.)

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vi. 23

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Zenitsu shrieks as he races straight into Tanjirou’s arms.

“Save me, Tanjirou!”

“E-Eh? Why?” Tanjirou blinks, smiling wryly.

“There is sex maniac on my heels and I don’t think my ass can handle anymore of it!” Zenitsu wails in his face.

“E…Eh…?” Sex…? Tanjirou’s smile falters.

Suddenly, he thinks he gets why the other demon slayers look so traumatized at the Thunder and Sound Pillars’ training field.

But as one of those who bore witness to the start of their relationship, Tanjirou must find some way to support them!

“B-But… If you don’t like it, couldn’t you just tell Uzui-san?” Tanjirou tries to smile sympathetically, though he doesn’t know how to sympathize with this scenario in the slightest least. “I’m sure Uzui-san will surely understand.” Probably.

“Eh…well… It’s not that I don’t like it or anything,” Zenitsu releases his grip on Tanjirou, hands still hovering on the other’s waist even as he lowers his head, cheeks slightly pink and flustered. “I love that guy and all, even if he’s a freaking monster of a human. And you are one too. But…” Zenitsu trails off.

“But…?” Tanjirou cocks his head encouragingly.

“HOW DOES HE MAKE LOVE LIKE THAT?!” Zenitsu suddenly blurts out in a scream, eyes just purely curious. Tanjirou’s expression freezes on his face again. Zenitsu tries to emphasize it with the movements of his hands. “It’s all – gentle – and warm – and the sounds that he makes are just so—” Tender, Tanjirou thinks he heard in that dropped whisper, if he did not hear wrong. Zenitsu averts his gaze, now completely flushed red. He shifts uncomfortably. (It makes Tanjirou want to do that too.) “—It makes me feel so warm at heart, it’s unbearable and sometimes, I just want to run away, but Tengen always pulls me back down on his—”

“AHH!” Tanjirou makes a sound intentionally to cut off whatever Zenitsu had been about to say.

Timely enough, it captures the attention of the Sound Pillar who had just been walking past the training field. Uzui struts towards them, looking none too pleased by Zenitsu’s running.

Hiih! He’s here again!” Zenitsu tries to hide behind him. It’s a futile attempt though Tanjirou lets him try, the twenty-something taller though thinner than him.

“Hey there, Tanjirou, Wimp. You doing good on your training?” Uzui greets.

Tanjirou brightens up. “My training’s been going perfectly fine, Uzui-san—”

Uzui’s gaze suddenly grows more intense. The reason, Tanjirou realizes, is because of the smooth middle finger Zenitsu is brandishing behind Tanjirou. And the Thunder Pillar’s doing that with that silky smug look too! The Thunder Pillar lets out a squeak when Uzui reaches out at the speed of sound and latches onto said offending finger. “L…Let go… Let go…!” Zenitsu struggles futilely even though he eventually loses. Tanjirou watches them in worry as Zenitsu’s captured over Uzui’s shoulder once again.

“Ah, almost forgot to mention it.” Uzui remembers something. “Tanjirou,” Said slayer blinks and straightens under the mention of his name. “Though this guy’s like this and all, I’m counting on you to look after my wife henceforth, alright?” Uzui squeezes Tanjirou’s shoulder.

“You… You’re really delusional, if you think we can get married in a country like this.” Zenitsu looks at Uzui patronizingly.

“Shuddap.” Uzui whacks his arse, ignoring Zenitsu’s scandalized screech, and marches away with him on his shoulders.

Hm. Tanjirou rubs his aching shoulder with a wince. So that’s what you call furious love between lovebirds, huh. Makes him wonder what Uzui’s jealous of him for, even though Zenitsu looks like he’s really in love with him too. …The more Tanjirou thinks about it, the more he scratches and cocks his head. …Somehow. That also reminds him a lot of Iguro for some reason. He wonders if Iguro also needs advice on his relationship with his partner too.

Tanjirou smiles.

He should try doing that the next time they meet. Maybe they’ll get along.