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August 2026


"Shoma, dios mio."

Javi pinches his nose and fans the blankets, trying to dissipate the stink.

"It wasn't me," Shoma mumbles.

"Eh? Eh? 'It wasn't me' he says," Javi mutters. 

"It wasn't! You fart too, you know," Shoma says.

"Would you both stop arguing so I can sleep?" Yuzu grumbles from Javi's chest. 

Javi sighs and Shoma snuggles against his back. 

They have been fighting more than usual since moving in. Maybe that new flat in Madrid is getting to them. Something about their new life, where they are all retired, which makes them cantankerous. 

Freedom is disquieting after all those years of rigor. Javi is used to it, relishes it, but even after three years, Yuzu chafes against it, and Shoma, having just retired, probably finds it all the more bewildering.

And then there is living together. Everyday discipline: becoming used to one another can be as stifling as freedom. 

So they oscillate between the two, and argue about who farts in bed, which, generally Shoma takes ownership of. 


Another foul plume sweeps over Javi, and he sighs. 

"Shoma --"

"It wasn't me!" Shoma squeaks. 

Javi glares at Shoma over his shoulder and Shoma glares in return, though they can just see the pale outlines of one another. 

"It was me! Both times!" Yuzu grins at his lovers. 

Shoma and Javi groan.

"Yuzu, you know what this means," Javi says.

Some nights when his farts are overwhelming, Shoma sleeps (or plays games) on the couch.

Yuzu's dejection is palpable, even in the dark. 

"Oh," he says, sad over leaving his lovers.

Yuzu plucks up his pillow almost despairingly and rises. He hasn't taken a single step though, when Javi snags him around the waist, pulls him back into bed, and kisses him. Shoma jumps over Javi's shoulder and joins in, smattering kisses against Yuzu's ear and throat. Yuzu laughs. 

"I love you both," Javi says, kissing Shoma and Yuzu in turn. "Even when you stink."

He issues a loud fart then. They all laugh, until they fall into a warm slumber.