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Verbal Expression

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Title: Verbal Expression
Author: Triste
Fandom: No. 6
Pairing: Nezumi/Shion
Rating: PG
Status: Complete
Disclaimer: Not mine


Finding inspiration is the easy bit. Bringing life to the words inside his head proves much more difficult.

“This is terrible,” sighs Shion, frowning unhappily at the end result. “I never thought writing poetry would be so hard.”

It’s something he’s wanted to do for a while now, something he’s found himself thinking about ever since he first met Nezumi, but the clumsy composition in his hands only serves to remind him how bad he is when it comes to expressing himself.

“Maybe I should just give up,” he mumbles.

“Or maybe you should just try harder.”

The sound of Nezumi’s voice makes Shion jump. He’s done it again, the thing where he seems to appear from out of nowhere without being noticed, and he snatches the piece of paper away before Shion can react.

“Don’t read it!” Shion pleads, but Nezumi only smirks and stays out of his reach.

“You must be joking,” he says, keeping Shion at a distance with one hand while holding the paper over his head with the other.

But Shion is deadly serious, not that it matters much to Nezumi, and all he can do is watch helplessly. There’s a moment of silence before Nezumi’s lips start to twitch. Then he snickers quietly. It doesn’t take much longer for him to burst out loudly into laughter.

Shion is left wishing he could disappear somewhere, that a hole would open in the floor and swallow him up out of sight, but nothing is ever so convenient. It’s a thousand times more embarrassing than being caught screaming into a storm, and he doesn’t need to see his reflection right now to know how red his face must be.

“I can’t believe you wrote a poem,” Nezumi gasps out, his voice shaking, “about my eyes.”

He pauses to catch his breath. Then he snorts, and the laughter starts all over again.

“It’s not that funny,” Shion says sulkily. Nezumi’s expression tells him otherwise. “And it’s not very fair. I bet even Shakespeare’s first attempt wasn’t perfect.”

“But it wasn’t this bad.”

There’s no way Nezumi can know for sure, but he seems convinced anyway. Shion secretly agrees with him, but he’s too busy trying to soothe his battered ego to admit it.

Finally, after what feels like forever, Nezumi calms down. “Why did you write it?” he asks, his expression genuinely curious.

“Why do you want to know?” Shion counters.

“Because I’m interested. Stop trying to avoid the question.”

Shion hesitates, unwilling to confess, unable to articulate his feelings. It’s stupid, really. He’s intelligent. He’s eloquent. He shouldn’t have to struggle so hard to transfer his thought process to speech. He shouldn’t have to be this vulnerable.

“That night,” he begins hesitantly, “when you gave me your name, I remember thinking about how it didn’t suit your eyes somehow.”

“Because they were like the colour of the sky just before dawn breaks?” Nezumi prompts, quoting directly from the poem (oh god, Shion thinks in desperation, he’s memorised it already).

“Yeah.” Shion shrugs. “I like your eyes. They’re all elegant and pretty and... stuff.”

It’s painful how awkward it sounds, but it’s the truth. And it’s only a matter of time before Nezumi decides to mock him.

Strangely enough, he doesn’t.

“Nobody has ever written a love poem for me before.”

Shion blushes fiercely in response. “Who said it was to do with love?” he stammers, refusing to meet Nezumi’s gaze. “I don’t recall writing anything about that.”

“Well,” Nezumi says, leaning in so that he’s uncomfortably close, “it was kind of obvious.” And then, when Shion doesn’t reply, he adds, “Aren’t you going to continue denying it?”

Then, his fingers unexpectedly gentle, he tips Shion’s chin so that he’s looking up, and it’s not his eyes Shion finds himself focusing on but his lips. They’re warm and dry and soft against his own, but that’s not what surprises Shion. There’s no aggression, no insistence, not even any tongue.

“That was a kiss for little kids,” Nezumi explains afterwards, his usual smirk back in place. “Or, if you prefer, for clueless blue bloods. I’m afraid you’re still not prepared for the adult version yet, Your Majesty.”

Shion pouts before he can stop himself. “You’re underestimating me, you know.”

“And sometimes you actually prove me wrong.” Nezumi ruffles his hair with a grin. “Don’t worry, you’ll get better. All it takes is practise.”

Shion has no idea whether he’s referring to the poetry or his kissing.