Without breaking the kiss, they fall on the bed - with her left hand, Sayo hugs Tsugumi’s waist, and with her right one, she finds the balance to lay them both softly, without accidentally hurting any one in any way.
Sayo tries to do everything this way - without hurrying, carefully, gently. Tsugumi is certain that she has a list of memorised actions flashing before her eyes, every step of which Sayo tries to follow like a recipe - as if making one inch to the side could send everything down the drain. What a waste of ingredients it would be.
Sayo is nervous and afraid of doing something wrong, and Tsugumi understands that very well - both insecurity and being hard on themselves are the traits they share. Tsugumi also knows that if Sayo wants something, she will give it everything she’s got, be it her guitar or her relationships with people - sometimes she gives far more than could be considered healthy, and this makes them very similar too. Finally, Tsugumi feels loved - Sayo simply and sincerely wants to do everything she can to bring her pleasure.
Is the feeling mutual?
When they part a little and Sayo is leaning down, balance only in her elbows, looking so concentrated, moving the bangs away so gently, Tsugumi is fairly certain she has altogether forgotten how to breathe.
Who knows how real this world is, how real what’s happening is, how real Hikawa Sayo is. How real is everything Tsugumi feels. This - and Sayo - seems to be a fantastic text from one of Himari’s novels in which her friend indulges fairly after midnight.
Sayo is following the recipe from the information she gathered in advance, this much is clear. Like her guitar or her baking, her actions are most accurate and logical. But when her hands stop, just reaching under Tsugumi's sweater, Tsugumi corrects herself - her actions are accurate, logical but hesitating still.
It’s nothing to blame her about - Tsugumi feels her own cheeks burning, her heart bumping against her chest, her skin reacting to every touch of the familiar fingers, calloused from constant guitar practice.
As if this is not enough, Sayo would not be Sayo if she didn’t ask like this - carefully and quietly, focused and visibly restrained. Looking so intently, her gaze clouded with something Tsugumi could relate to. Looking uncertain and guilty. Despite that, even with her hair messy from Tsugumi’s attention, looking so infinitely and irresistibly perfect, gorgeous, and...
Entranced in the moment and intoxicated with her own feelings, Tsugumi reaches out and grabs the collar of Sayo’s black shirt, bringing her closer than she planned, and looks determinedly in these surprised brightly-green eyes (is there a thing about Sayo which could be a little bit more sympathetic to Tsugumi’s heart?).
Like this, the remaining distance between them is crushed in a tight, long, unexpectedly and uncharacteristically greedy kiss.
Just like the first time they met when Tsugumi offered her help, her explanations, and her time; just like their friendship when Tsugumi expressed her wish to spend time together, to support and accept the other for who she was; just like their relationship when Tsugumi was the first one to gather her courage, reach up and, just like now, crush this distance.
The first one to reach out in Sayo’s moment of doubt was always Tsugumi. It didn’t matter if she had a plan or she did not - and, well, experience proved that there was no recipe for moments like this. Behind all of her gentle and balanced image, Tsugumi could and would commit surprisingly spontaneous and even more surprisingly correct choices.
Just like now.
Pulling Tsugumi’s sweater up, leaning her head to the side to deepen the kiss, Sayo thinks that this is all the courage that she has ever needed.