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7 Days, 7 Reasons to love You

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Monday

 

Inui hated Mondays. The beginning of another boring week, going through life again. The thought of it exhausted him to no extent. He hated waking up from a Sunday slumber, making his coffee, and going to work. He didn’t hate going to work but mornings were a drag. 

 


“Inupi,” Draken whispered softly as he slightly shook him. “Wake up, it’s time!” He said.

 


“Come on, sit up!” Draken scolded him, putting a hand under his head to support him. Inui didn’t want to get out of the comfort of his bed, it was so inviting that he just wanted to… lay there. He grunted in his half asleep state. Fuck the sun for rising up. Fuck the world for creating the concept of working. Fuck capitalism. Fuck the government. Fuck Draken for waking him up. 

 


“Here, I made coffee, just the way you like it.” Inui blinked. Coffee? With milk and extra sugar? He took the mug and took a sip. It tasted exactly the way he liked it. He found himself smiling. Inui was sure there were flowers and sparkles behind him at this point but he wasn’t complaining. Draken knew just how to help him find a way out of endless Monday blues and the despair that accompanied. So… Thank you for that? 

 

Tuesday

 

“How much longer Inupi? We’ll be late for the party.” Draken said, impatiently tapping his foot and checking his watch. Draken and Inui had finished working and were about to head home to get ready for Hakkai’s birthday party but Inui’s bike refused to start.

 

Inui could definitely fix it, he had the skill but unfortunately, he was panicking and not thinking straight. His beloved Black Dragons ride was now getting old and it was possible that it was leaving his side too. Everything, everyone who meant something to him, they all would leave him after a while. He had never-

 


“Inupi. I get why you love the bike but you need to leave it here for today. I promise I’ll fix it myself tomorrow. Let’s just go right now.” Draken said to him, continuing to impatiently tap his foot against the concrete flooring.

 

 “I’ll show up at the party, I swear. Lemme just-” Inui rambled, not looking up at Draken. His bike was his priority right now.
“Inupi,” Draken said softly as he crouched next to Inui. “Look at me.” He said, holding Inui’s face in his hands. Inui could feel himself go red from Draken’s action but hopefully the lowlights of the streets covered for him. 

 


“You need to stop worrying so much. I’ll fix your bike tomorrow okay? Let’s go for now. I promise you I will fix your bike no matter how many customers I have to turn down for it.” 

 


“You don’t-” Inui started but was stopped by Draken placing a finger on his lip.

 


“Shhh. I said I’ll do it, so I will. Let’s go for now okay?” Draken said, smiling widely at him.
Oh god, was Inui feeling butterflies in his stomach or was the devil tickling his insides?
“Start the bike, I’ll just head inside to park yours.”

 


Inui didn’t know what to make of Draken’s actions. Was he just being good to him? What was he exactly playing at? Was the skinship really… necessary? Not that he was complaining, he  loved it when Draken held him close but it only left him bewildered.
“God damnit Draken! What are you doing to me?”

 

Wednesday

 

“What are these flowers doing here?” Inui asked Draken as soon as he entered their shop, careful not to accidentally knock down the bouquet.

 


“I put them there,” Draken replied, looking up from the bike and grinning widely. He looked incredibly proud of his flower arrangements and it made Inui smile too. 

 


“What flowers are those?” He asked, walking towards the mini fridge to get himself a drink. 

 


“Orchids and peony.” 

 


“Pretty. Looks like something you’d see at a wedding.” Inui said. He didn’t understand why Draken went out and bought flowers for the shop but if it made him happy then it was all good. 

 


“That’s because they represent good luck, good fortune, prosperity etc.” He explained. Looks like someone’s been researching flower symbolism. 

 


“Nice. Don’t you think it would’ve been better if you got the flowers when we opened the shop?” Inui questioned, taking a seat on the counter.

 


“Better late than never right?” He replied getting back to the bike he was working on.
“Yeah. You forgot a bouquet on the table though.”

 


“No I didn’t. Those are for you.” He replied not looking up from his work. Was he just concentrating or perhaps… blushing?

 


“For me? Why?” Inui asked, surprised. Why would Draken buy him flowers? It wasn’t his birthday, it wasn’t Christmas or any other special occasion. Well, Christmas can’t be celebrated in the middle of May but whatever, it wasn’t the festive season either. 

 


“Because I went to buy flowers and wanted to give you something too.” He said, still not looking up from his bike.

 


“Cool.” Inui said, picking up the flowers to sniff them. He didn’t notice the card that fell when he picked up the bouquet. It read:

 

Dark Red Carnations: Love, Fascination, Distinction 

 

Thursday 

 

“The engine company wrote back. They’ll deliver the engines by next week.” Inui informed Draken as he tore open another envelope. D&D motors checked their mails every Thursday and though it could be boring, it was important. Inui didn’t like such boring tasks, he’d rather do the finances instead. 

 

After years of being in Koko’s company, he knew how to properly handle money. “You should know how to handle your money,” Koko used to tell Inui everytime he made his bills and stuff, showing Inui how to correctly add the taxes and what not. Inui used to say that it wasn’t important for him to learn all this because he’d (hopefully) always have Koko to do the bills but well, that didn’t end up well. On the bright side, he knew how to efficiently handle the bike shop’s finances. 

 

He picked up an envelope which was addressed to him, not D&D motors. Did someone get the wrong address? He tore it and read it,

To Inui Seishu,

 


Call me whatever names you want for not being able to say this to your face but atleast I’m trying. We started off as co-workers, business partners, whatever you’d like to call it and I don’t remember exactly when we became friends. I found myself appreciating your company more and more and soon I wanted to be someone you appreciated and valued. I don’t know how that works but it happened and I was happy with being your friend.

 

People say that nothing is ever enough. Never quite understood that till I wanted to be more than just your friend, Inupi. I wanted to hug you, wanted to brush your hair out of your face, wanted to be the one whom you whispered and giggled about in your sleepovers. Very ‘girly’ I know but it's a metaphor, hopefully. I’m not thinking straight, sorry. Point is, I like you. And I often day-dream about what it would be like to call you my boyfriend. Will you let me Inupi?

 

Sincerely,
Ryuguji Ken. 

 

Inui got up from his seat and walked up to Draken. He lightly knocked on his back, somewhat like a magic door. “Knock Knock” he went. Draken turned around to face him and before he could say anything, Inui bent down and pressed a feather-light kiss on Draken’s lips.

 

 According to Draken, it felt like a scene out of a fairytale; it looked like one too. Inui’s long hair slightly flying because of the fan, his hands clasped behind his back, eyes closed and him bending down to kiss a very shocked Draken. Yes, this was from ‘Tales of Inui and his Warrior Prince’, chapter 17. 

 

Inui obviously got flustered and left the shop after that but not before saying “I’ll be back soon. Don’t miss me too much, boyfriend.” first.

 

Friday 

 

“What are we watching today?” Inui asked Draken, as he plopped down on the couch reaching out to get some of the snacks for himself.

 


“You choose.”

 


“Mean Girls.” He joked.

 


“We could watch Mean Girls, you know.” 

 


“I was joking. We’re not 17 year old high schoolers Ken.”  

 


“What about 17 Again?” Draken suggested.

 


“You wanna watch 17 Again? Got a crush on Zac Efron or what?” 

 


“Listen, are we watching Mean Girls or 17 Again?” 

 


“17 Again.”

 

There was a comfortable silence between Inui and Draken as they watched the movie, the only sounds coming from the TV. Halfway into the movie, Draken spoke, “What would you do if you were 17 again?” He asked. Inui smiled softly, he hugged his knees and laid his head on them as he looked at Draken. 

 


“By the time I was 17, I had already lost all the things I wish I could change.” Inui’s eyes looked distant, he was thinking back to his past but Draken couldn’t figure out the exact emotion in them. 

 

Guilt? Suffering? Regret? Draken didn’t know, he wished he did. 

 


“But if I had the chance to be young again, I’d save my sister.” That’s all he said. His sister, not Koko, not Black Dragons but his sister. Maybe it was because the fire in his house was the beginning of everything else that followed; the snowball effect as you might call it. 

 

Draken understood that too. For him, it all traced back to Shinichiro-kun’s death. He wished he could go back in time like Takemichi and tell Kazutora that he doesn’t need to steal a bike to show Mikey his gratitude. He wished he could tell Kazutora that the only thing Mikey wanted for his birthday was their company and Taiyaki maybe. 

 

He didn’t blame Kazutora for his shitty life and all those shitty experiences he went through. He didn’t blame Kazutora for Shinichiro-kun’s or even Baji’s death. But that was where it started going wrong and Kisaki took advantage of that. By the time he found out the truth, it was already too late. So he could do nothing but repent now, and appreciate the life he has been given. Tomorrow wasn’t certain, it was always better to live everyday like it’s his last. 

 

No one knows when their last day will be. Shinichiro-kun didn’t know he’d die that day when he stayed in the shop after closing hours. Baji knew he’d die on the 31st, what was going through his head that day when he was getting dressed. Did he ask his mother to make him some special breakfast? Did he tell her he loved her? Draken didn’t know, just like Baji’s mother didn’t when she let him go out of the house that day. 

 

“What about you? You’d save Emma right?” Inui asked, interrupting Draken’s thoughts.
“In a heartbeat.” He replied. He didn’t have to think it over, he’d sell his soul to Satan to have Emma back, but sadly that’s not how the real world worked. Once someone is gone, they really are gone.  

 

“Would you stop Koko from leaving?” Draken asked.

 


Inui smiled. If there was one thing he could redo in his life, it was this. He didn’t mind if he got completely tainted by sin and blood, he’d still have his love by his side. And that was holy enough for him. 

 


“I’d go to hell with him.” 



Saturday 

 

“Where are you going?” Draken spoke to Inui for the first time since last night. It’s not like the two had argued about something, there was just a weird tension between the two. 

 

Would Inui choose Koko over Draken if he was asked to? Would he go running back into Koko’s arms as if the past 5 years didn’t even happen? Was he using Draken as a replacement for Koko? Was he using him to fix his broken heart? Inui hoped not. He had always been shit with his emotions and having to face them just stressed him out even more. 

 


“Just going for a walk. I'll be back soon.” Inui said as he left their shared apartment. He needed some time alone and having Draken in the same house as him somehow felt suffocating. It wasn’t like Draken suffocated him or that their relationship felt binding and like a burden to him. 

 

Draken wasn’t the problem for Inui at all. It was his own emotional baggage, his own mind, his own feelings, his self-formed prison. He needed time alone to poke the locks he placed on his emotions and ponder about what he’s going to do. 

 

When Inui was younger, Akane used to help him with his homework. He didn’t need a private tutor, Akane somehow always managed to stay on top of her own grades and still tutor her little brother. Because of that Inui started viewing Akane as the one person who would always tell him what to do if he’s facing a problem. 

 

He trusted his elder sister enough to tell her about his problems and ask her for guidance. He knew she wasn’t here with him anymore but she was still his one and only guidance in life. Koko wasn’t the only one who was holding onto Akane’s ghost; it was Inui too.

 

“Ane-san.” Inui whispered as he sat down at Akane’s grave. 

 


“I brought you your favourite candy.” He said, putting down the strawberry candies at Akane’s tombstone. 

 


“I think it’s been around two-three weeks since I started seeing someone again. I’ve told you about him, he’s come here to visit you too. You remember Draken right? Of course you do, he got you flowers, that show-off.” Inui laughed softly.

 


“So yeah, he’s my boyfriend now. He’s too mature to be just my boy-friend though. He’s my man-friend, but it doesn’t work that way either. But the thing is, boyfriend is such a high school term. We’re not kids anymore you know.”

 


“I’m kind of glad that we’re not kids anymore. I had a shitty childhood. You left, Shinichiro-kun left, Koko left, everyone left at one point; it’s why I don’t like getting attached. We’re having issues already, you know. But I guess it comes with the whole having a boyfriend package.” Inui stopped to breathe and looked at Akane’s name engraved on her gravestone. 



“Call me Seishu, will you? No one’s called me that in ages. It’s always Inui, Inupi, Inui-kun, blah blah, never Seishu. I sometimes fear that I’ve completely lost myself. I’m just what is remaining of our Inui household and nothing else about me matters. Koko made me feel that way- Like I’ve never been Seishu, always Inupi, Akane’s brother Inupi.” A beat passed before he continued. 

 

”I still loved him though. Guess I just wanted to be accepted and loved that bad because ever since I lost you and Shinichiro-kun, I don’t think I felt love again. It didn’t matter to me that the love Koko gave me was never truly meant for me or if it was second hand. I heard a little love is better than none, yeah? ” A rueful smile took over his features. 

 

“I’m afraid that if I see him again I’m gonna go running back to him. I’m not even sure if that’s what I want. Hell, I don’t even know myself anymore. Am I even Inui Seishu anymore?”
Inui knew that he was crying by now but he didn’t care. He deserved to let it all out. He knew that his sister wouldn’t judge him either; She’s seen him cry before, this was nothing new to her. 

 


“Ane-san. Am I even a person of my own anymore? Sometimes it feels like it wasn’t you who died but it was me. Does Seishu even exist for anyone anymore? Koko saw me as you, and I’m afraid Draken sees me as Emma. Is he like Koko too, ane-san? Will he hurt me like Koko did and use me as a physical replacement for someone who’s gone-”

 

“Seishu.” He knew that voice well. Inui couldn’t turn back and face him, he didn’t have it in him. The man kneeled beside him and sighed softly. 

 


“Akane-san.” He whispered. “I knew your brother would be here, I hope you forgive me for listening in on your conversation. I didn’t mean to but I couldn’t stop him when he was pouring his heart out to you.” He stopped for a second, gathering his thoughts.

 

“ I wish he was comfortable enough to tell me about what he’s feeling because then I’d tell him that he’s not Emma Sano; I don't see him as Emma Sano. She was my first love, I know, but that doesn’t mean I shouldn’t move on. I know that it might be hard for him to choose between me and Koko, he’s known Koko longer after all and I think- no, I’m sure he was way more emotionally attached to Koko than he is to me, but I’d still want him to choose me.” The raven hair covered his face, emotions obscured behind the curtain of black.

 

“ I know it’s not possible for Inui to just suddenly change his mind and redirect his emotions into a whole other direction but I’m sure I can prove myself worthy of his love. I’ll work on it Akane-san, I’ll keep your brother happy, I’ll show him what love is till he learns to truly love me back.” Draken paused to breathe. 

 

“Inupi.” He said, turning to face him and taking his hands into his. 

 

“This is not a challenge to me, or to you, or to Koko or to anyone else. I just want you to know that you deserve love, happiness and all the other good things of the world; and I want to be the one who can actually make you fall in love again. It might just be possessiveness on my side but I mean no harm.” There was a spark of determination in his eyes.

 

“ When I look at you, I think that you deserve to be happy, and I want to be the one who makes you happy. When I look at you smile, I pray that you never stop smiling. The future is uncertain but I certainly want you to be there with me.” 

 

He took a deep breath before speaking up to him softly, “ Will you stay Inupi? I won’t force you, but I want you to stay. More than anything else, I want you.”



“Draken. Why?” Inui asked when he finally looked up to face Draken. 

 


“Wha-” Draken started but Inui stopped him.



“You’re the reason for all my questions. But at the same time, for every question “why?” you were my “because.” 



“I won’t lie to you, Draken. I don’t love you, not yet at least. But I know I can, I can learn to. I’ll get there one day, I believe I will. And when that day comes, I’ll tell you I love you as many times as you ask me to. Just wait for me, Draken. I’ll love you one day, I promise I will.”



Sunday 

 

Seishu Inui - Journal Entry 

 

Koko, I forgive you. I forgive you for using me as a replacement for ane-san. I feel like we could’ve been best friends if it wasn’t for what happened in the fire that day but oh well, that’s something which will happen in a parallel universe. 

 

Remember the time we discussed parallel universes and paradoxes? We both knew shit about astronomy but we still liked to discuss all that, and I think that was what made us great friends. You’ve always been an important part of my life and though I’ve spent a good amount of time hating you for all that you’ve done, I realise that I could never really hate you. 

 

No matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t live peacefully and hate you at the same time; it’s my own little paradox. So if I want to move forward with my life, the first step is to let go of my baggage. So yes, I forgive you and wish the best for your future. Not like you’ll read any of this but I’m hoping you’re peaceful and happy. 

 

Because I am, I’m happy, I’m at peace. I’m getting better and I’m finally learning to love again. It’s true you left me broken but thankfully, I have a second chance right now and I hope I don’t blow it. Black Dragons was my first shot at life, and you were my first shot at love. Without you two it felt like I’m just a ship floating aimlessly. 

 

But then I met him. He was like a sailor and his heart anchored me. And you know? Every day I wake up grateful that I’m no longer lost at sea. That was very poetic of me, you know I love literature so I don’t think it’s very surprising. I know you’ll understand it though, you’ve always been good at picking up on metaphors. I sometimes felt like you read my books when I slept but you could just be smart like that. 

 


Did you know Draken bought me a book the other day? He doesn’t particularly like reading but he still bought me the book. I’ll read it out to him, maybe he’ll fall asleep on time then. He has this bad habit of staying up late and it’s not good for his health. I care about him and I only want him to take care of himself more. 

 

After all, he’s the reason why I’m still here today, sane and thriving. 

 

If it wasn’t for him, I probably would’ve drowned in my own misery. I’d loathe my life, and I’d loathe you. Draken was my redemption and I hope I don’t lose him the way I lost everyone. I want him to be there by my side, I want to love him the way I loved you. 

 

Koko, I am fully committing my heart to Draken and I just hope that he stays by me till the time I can completely, confidently say that I truly love him, and only him.

                                                            

***

 

There comes a time when patterns are broken. There comes a time when a loop finishes executing its function. There comes a time when change happens. And for Inui, that is exactly what happened. 

 

“Everyone leaves at one point,” he once said, but Draken didn’t. Draken stayed. Through numerous Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays, he stayed. And one fine Monday morning, when Inui smelt the familiar coffee and felt soft lips on his forehead again, he realised it. He knew this feeling but this time it was 10 times stronger. 

 


“Draken,” he said, lightly pushing the coffee mug out of Draken’s hand and cupping his face in his palms. 

 


“Draken I- I love you.”