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Visions Are Seldom What They Seem

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It started with a fight. There wasn’t any preamble, no verbal sparring before the physical blows fell, just straight in, in media res, LaRusso’s fist in his solar plexus. While he was doubled over, he grappled him around the waist and they fell together to the floor. LaRusso flipped them, got on top of him, and pinned him like a butterfly against the mat and then suddenly it was something else. He wasn’t aware of a moment where they moved towards each other, it was like a hard cut from LaRusso’s face glaring into his while they both took huge gasping mouthfuls of air to them kissing fiercely. He tried to get the upper hand, but LaRusso pushed him down and growled into his mouth.

Then LaRusso was between his legs, sucking his dick and staring up at him with hate in his big, brown eyes and Johnny was half afraid he was going to bite it off. He tried to reach out to put a hand on the other man’s cheek, but he was blocked and his wrist pinned on the ground next to his hip. LaRusso growled again and Johnny came down his throat.

He woke up to the sun streaming through his window and his dick tenting the boxer shorts he had gone to sleep in. He slipped his hand through the open fly, pulled himself out and gave himself a few slow strokes. His dick twitched in his hand as he remembered the dream. He could still almost feel LaRusso’s lips around him. It didn’t take long.

Once he had come, he pulled his stained boxers off and threw them to the far corner of the room where his laundry was piling up and wiped his hand on the sheet next to him. He imagined LaRusso’s lips pursed up like a dog’s asshole at his lack of concern for the cleanliness of his bedding and let out a low chuckle.

So that was new.

It didn’t concern him though. LaRusso got his blood pumping and his sleeping brain had gotten a few wires crossed. It wasn’t a big deal. Kind of hot though.

He got up and walked, naked, to the shower where he pulled himself off again thinking about the flash of LaRusso’s brown eyes filled with anger.

*

It happened on and off after that. There were variations on the theme, but they were all fairly similar. They’d fight then they’d fuck. If anything bothered him about it it was that he never imagined having the upper hand. It was always LaRusso manhandling him, pinning him down (like that little stick insect could). And apparently he was into that.

Maybe, he thought generously to himself, roughing LaRusso up would bring up bad associations. Maybe he didn’t want to be a bully in his dreams. Wanted to imagine a rivalry rather than a rehash of his senior year when he’d been a little monster.

It still didn’t really bother him. Not until… well.

*

He fell asleep in front of the TV, his last conscious memory being blinking heavily as a LaRusso Auto commercial played in the background.

Daniel walked over to the couch.

“Hey,” he said. “Come on, sleepy head. You’ll tweak your back sleepin’ out here.”

“Mmm,” he protested mildly and Daniel laughed at him.

“Come on, hotshot,” he said, putting his hands under Johnny’s armpits and hauling him upright. “Oof, you’re heavy.”

“All muscle,” he replied and Daniel laughed again.

“Sure it is,” he said and pushed Johnny’s hair away from his face.

He leaned in and brought their lips together softly. No tongue, just his soft, dry lips pressed against Johnny’s.

“Come to bed,” he said, without heat.

Johnny woke with a start and winced at the pain in his back. Goddamn it. What the fuck was that?

*

He couldn’t stop thinking about it. Sex was one thing, but what was his subconscious doing feeding him this bullshit?

He was haunted by it. Every time he saw a LaRusso Auto billboard, every time the stupid commercial come on, he felt the phantom press of lips against his. It was, no exaggeration, ruining his life.

Then, of course he ran into the guy. Or, rather, he came storming into his dojo.

He knows, Johnny thought illogically for a second and then gave himself a shake.

He could barely pay attention to the man’s ranting and windmilling hand motions, his eyes kept dragging back to his lips.

“Are you even listening to me?” LaRusso’s voice finally cut through.

“Huh?” Johnny said.

“Unbelievable!” LaRusso threw his hands in the air and tossed his whole head back as he rolled his eyes, revealing the long line of his throat.

Johnny swallowed.

“No, I’m listening,” he lied. “You’re… mad at me?”

“No shit, Sherlock,” Daniel said and Johnny’s eyes flicked to his mouth again as he licked his lips. “Seriously, I got something on my face or what?”

Johnny’s eyes snapped forward.

“What?” he asked.

LaRusso’s expression softened.

“Johnny, are you okay?” he asked. “You’re very spacey. Do you have a concussion or something?”

He stepped forward and tried to take his face in his hands to peer into his eyes. Johnny shook him off.

“I’m fine,” he said. “Jesus.”

“So you’re just ignoring me?” LaRusso took his hands back and put them on his hips.

“You surprised me is all,” Johnny said. “I was… surprised. To see you.”

LaRusso’s face softened again.

“You want to get a drink or something?” he asked.

*

It took him fewer drinks than he would have liked to admit to LaRusso what the problem was.

“I wouldn’t worry about it,” LaRusso said and slapped him on the arm.

“Easy for you to say,” Johnny muttered and took another swig of his beer.

“No, really, I’ve had dreams like that on and off since high school,” LaRusso continued and Johnny inhaled half his beer.

He coughed several times while LaRusso patted him stoutly on the back until his breathing went back to normal.

“Excuse me?” he said.

“I hardly think you get to react like I’ve shattered your paradigm of how the world works when you just told me that you have sex dreams about me too,” LaRusso rolled his eyes. “It’s not a big deal, Johnny, stuff gets mixed up when you’re asleep.”

“Yeah but,” Johnny swallowed. He lowered his voice to a hiss: “What about that other thing?”

“Oh that?” LaRusso said. “Well that one does mean you’re in love with me actually. Sorry ‘bout it, pal.”

Johnny glared at him and he sniggered into his martini like the little shit that he was.

“Oh lighten up,” LaRusso said. “You said yourself you’d just seen the commercial. I was on your mind and you were probably just trying to remind yourself to go to bed. It really is not a big deal.”

“Yeah, maybe,” Johnny said, tugging at the corner of a coaster. “So… do you just have dreams like that about me, or…?”

“C’mon, Johnny” LaRusso said with a scoff. “Who else would I get confused like that about?”

He felt a warmth spread through him, starting at his chest.

“Oh,” he said. “That’s… you too, man.”

“Thanks, Johnny,” he said and it almost sounded sincere.

*

When they finally wove out into the parking lot, LaRusso convinced him to share an Uber with him instead of driving.

“Can’t have my soul nemesis bend himself around a lamp post on the way home,” he said with a laugh.

“Shut up, man,” Johnny said.

In the car journey back, LaRusso’s head swayed until it came to rest, heavy, on Johnny’s shoulder. He let him sleep.

When they got to his place, he tried to extricate himself and LaRusso’s arms came up around his waist to cling to him.

“I gotta go,” he said, shaking him awake. “Hey, Daniel, I gotta go.”

“Okay,” LaRusso blinked sleepily and straightened up. “See you later.”

“In your dreams,” Johnny smiled at him and the other man laughed.

Before he quite knew what was happening, he was being kissed. Pretty thoroughly. He kissed back. It was only polite.

LaRusso pulled back from him and smiled.

“Sweetheart, I ask no more than this,” he warbled off-key. “A kiss to build a dream on.”

“You’re so wasted,” Johnny laughed. He ducked forward and gave him another quick peck. “Text me so I know you’re home safe.”

“Okay, Johnny,” LaRusso said and then yawned.

The Uber driver cleared his throat meaningfully.

“Yeah, I’m going,” Johnny said shortly. He gave LaRusso one last kiss on the cheek and then left the car.

Ten minutes later his phone buzzed.

Home the text read simply. He smiled and rubbed his thumb across the screen.

That night when he went to sleep, he didn’t dream.