Actions

Work Header

Opportunities Taken

Work Text:

The party was boring, but the alcohol was free, so Kiro wasn't complaining too loudly. At least the people watching was fun given how many names were at the do. Industry parties could be so tedious as their management trouped them around to meet people, but at least the catering was good at this one. He'd been eyeing up the chocolate cake on the buffet table for a while and was wondering if he could get away with a piece.

Having just taken a quick trip to the loo, he was on his way back to find one or more of the others, but when he heard the band's name he stopped. Someone was standing just around the corner back into the main room, away from the majority of the party.

"What about Cinema Bizarre?" said a second voice.

"Did you see them?" replied the first, more excited, person that Kiro sort of recognised from their voice.

"Kind of hard to miss," replied the other, sounding disinterested. "Why?"

"God, Tom, if it doesn't have tits the size of melons you don't pay attention do you?" said the first voice and Kiro began to think he knew who he was listening to and he couldn't help smiling. "I'd give my left arm to get into one of their wardrobes."

That grabbed his attention even more; not really what he'd been expecting to hear from who he thought was speaking. There was a moment's silence and Kiro moved a little closer.

"But, Bill," Tom said, confirming to him that he was indeed listening to the Kaulitz twins talking, "your wardrobe's the size of a house already."

"So?" Bill replied and Kiro grinned; Bill sounded like Strify. "The jacket their singer is wearing is gorgeous."

"Then go and ask him where he got it," Tom said, sounding completely uninterested, "and leave me to ogle the girls."

There was the sound of a hand hitting fabric and Kiro could only conclude that Tom had just been slapped.

"Hey!" was the response. "Watch it, you almost spilt my drink."

"Wouldn't make any difference to that monstrosity you're wearing anyway," was the petulant reply to that.

They'd sort of met Tokio Hotel on a couple of occasions, but only at a distance and everyone had been in professional mode then and Kiro couldn't help being entertained by the more private conversation. It occurred to him that Bill and Strify would probably get on if they had long enough to get to know each other.

"What's with you today?" Tom asked after a few moments.

"Nothing," Bill replied, "I'm just bored."

"You're always bored at things like this," Tom said almost straight away, "but that doesn't make you pissy. What's up and why the sudden obsession with Cinema Bizarre? It's not like we haven't seen them before."

Kiro wished he could see the pair when there was more silence; there was clearly body language going on and he wanted to know what it was.

"Okay," Bill finally said as if it was being forced out of him, "did you see the little one, um, Kiro; he looked utterly delicious."

"Ah," Tom said in a knowing tone, "you're bored and horny."

Kiro was a little stunned. There was another slap and he began to wonder if he should really be listening to this. Bill Kaulitz fancied him; who knew?

"You try pretending to be straight the whole time and see how frustrated you get," Bill said and Kiro could have sworn he heard a pout in the tone. "One day I'm just going to announce to the world on international television that I'm bi and be done with it."

"It would be worth the fall out just to see David's heart attack," Tom agreed with a laugh. "You shouldn't have been so adamant you were straight when we first started."

"I was a kid, what did I know?" Bill said derisively. "So if I kidnap him, will you cover for me?"

Tom laughed again.

"You know David has Bill seeking radar," Tom said, "nothing I can do about that."

"You could throw yourself in the way, sacrifice yourself for me," Bill said dramatically, but there was a laugh in his voice.

"Yeah right," Tom replied, "that's not in the twin contract."

Kiro found himself smiling again; the Kaulitz twins were not quite how he had thought and he liked it.

"Spoilsport," Bill said with a huff.

"Go talk to him if he's so delicious," Tom suggested and Kiro began to wonder if he could get past the pair without them seeing him.

"I would, but here comes David," Bill replied, tone changing completely; "time to get back to work. I don't want another lecture on being professional."

And that was it, conversation over.

Kiro gave it a couple of seconds and then walked to the end of the little corridor. He was just in time to see Bill and Tom striding into the crowd and he waited until they disappeared into the sea of people before making a beeline for where he had last seen Strify.

"We were just about to send out a search party for you," Yu said as he joined the huddle where the band seemed to have regrouped.

"I was eavesdropping," he replied with an unrepentant grin, "on a very enlightening conversation."

"You know what they say about eavesdroppers," Strify said in a haughty tone.

"What?" Romeo said, as if on cue.

"They hear all the juicy gossip," Strify said with a grin to match Kiro's; "spill."

Kiro laughed; he was going to enjoy this.

"Well we were definitely noticed when we came in," he said, pulling the others in for a conspiratorial huddle, "and we have one big-shot admirer at least. That's why I stopped, I heard us mentioned."

Strify's eyes lit up.

"Who?" was the immediate question.

"One Mr Bill Kaulitz," he replied with great relish.

"Really?" Strify sounded honestly surprised.

Tokio Hotel were basically music industry royalty in Germany and although they'd been herded to the same places sometimes, Tokio Hotel were in their own bracket. Kiro couldn't help liking the fact that they'd been taken notice of by such big names. Cinema Bizarre were on their way, but the heights of Tokio Hotel were a dream for most bands.

"Oh yeah," Kiro said, grinning, "and I quote: 'The jacket their singer is wearing is gorgeous.'"

It pleased him no end when Strify stood up a little straighter at that; there was always a bundle of nerves under the confident exterior their singer showed the world.

"And he wants into the rest of our wardrobes too," Kiro added, thoroughly pleased with the effect he was having on his friends.

They took as much, if not more, shit than Bill Kaulitz for their style and to find that a big name admired them was good for the ego.

"There's got to be more," Strify said looking him in the eye; "you're far too excited."

Kiro grinned again; it was so much fun.

"Oh I haven't told you the best bit," he said, wiggling his eyebrows.

"Then tell us," Yu prodded as he didn't go on.

"This is from his own lips," Kiro said after making them wait a few seconds more. "It seems that Bill is not as straight as his management want him to be."

"No way," Shin finally piped up to voice what all the others seemed to be thinking.

"But all the interviews are so adamant," Strify added, as ever, completely unembarrassed about admitting reading about other bands.

"The curse of being young and in the public eye," Kiro replied, grinning even more, "he hadn't figured it out."

Yu looked over the heads of the rest of the room to where Kiro could just about see Bill and Tom, sometimes he cursed not being tall; he wanted the nice view too.

"Wonder what his type is," Yu said and then grinned at the others lecherously.

"Back off, Hair boy," Kiro said with a mock challenge, "I saw him first."

That made everyone laugh just like it was supposed to, but Kiro couldn't help wondering if maybe he did have a shot. His eyes flicked back in the direction of the Kaulitzes, but someone annoyingly tall was now in his line of sight and he had no view at all. When he looked back to the others Strify was looking at him with a worryingly contemplative expression.

"Right," he said, moving on quickly, "gossip shared, hadn't we better get back to schmoozing before we get told off?"

"No rest for the wicked," Rom agreed.

"And we're all very wicked," was Strify's comment before everyone put on their professional faces and prepared to re-enter the fray.

Not many people would believe it, but it was hard being entertaining and Kiro mentally prepared himself while trying to decide if making a play for Bill would be too much of a risk. To have Cinema Bizarre spoken in the same breath as Tokio Hotel would be good publicity if nothing else, but he wasn't that mercenary and there were the dangers to be taken into consideration. He turned, preparing to go play nice with the industry types and then caught sight of Bill across the room as the tall person moved and decided that Bill was quite possibly worth a hell of a lot of effort. There was beauty and then there was a Kaulitz.

The fact that his cock stirred at the very idea gave him a hint that, a, it had been too long since he had had any company apart from his hand and b, Bill pushed all of his buttons. He had to try or he'd regret it forever.

"There's something you didn't say," Strify said, lightly grabbing his arm before he could get away completely.

The others were already dispersing, but Kiro knew Strify would not give up. Kiro rolled his eyes and then dragged his friend towards the side of the room.

"Do not tell the others," he said in a conspiratorial whisper, "but I might just get lucky."

Strify's eyes went wide and round.

"You're not seriously thinking of going after a Kaulitz are you?" Strify asked, clearly thinking the whole idea was mad.

"I wouldn't, but seems he spotted me first," Kiro revealed the big secret. "Don't tell me you wouldn't have a go given a chance."

Strify looked kind of undecided for a few seconds and then shrugged and rolled his eyes.

"Okay," Strify admitted, "I would, but be careful. If he's anything like his brother he'll use you and drop you like a stone."

"Strify," Kiro chided, "it's not like I'm looking for undying love."

His friend just looked at him.

"Yeah, and remember how long I've known you," Strify replied as if talking to an idiot; "you'll come back floating on air and when he doesn't call you'll be a wreck."

"Will not," he said with a dismissive shake of his head; "stop worrying."

It was sweet how Strify did worry sometimes, but Kiro had no intention of losing his heart, just a little sexual tension. That was if he could separate his prey from the pack for long enough to take him down.

"Like I said," Strify told him as they parted, "be careful."

Kiro laughed it off and decided on a strategy. Bumping into his target directly seemed so clichéd, so instead he just headed in Bill's general direction. There was no problem spotting where the Kaulitz twins were because they were so tall and he picked his direction and began heading towards the buffet table right through Bill's eyeline. So many people at these things had given up eating that there weren't many standing around it, so he had plenty of space to play with.

As soon as he was in Bill's line of sight, he felt the other musician's eyes on him and he went with step one. Pulling a ring off his finger as if he was playing with it while trying to decide what to do, he dropped it. The room had a thick carpet, so he knew it wouldn't go far and, swearing quietly to himself, he bent down to retrieve it. That had to have given Bill a view of his arse in the tight white jeans he was wearing.

With the first phase complete, he walked over to the food and made a show of looking everything over. He didn't overly like celery, but he wasn't above being completely blatant, so he picked up a stick, used it to scoop up some of the dip next to it and then, with relish, sucked all the dip off of it. There wasn't really time for subtle and if Bill's blood wasn't rushing south, Kiro wasn't sure what would do it.

Picking up a plate, he put the celery onto it and then went looking for other things. There were some very sticky looking prawn things on a nearby platter so he picked one up, ate it and then cleaned his fingers very thoroughly; with his mouth.

Turning, he caught Strify's eye across the room and grinned and waved. He received an eye roll for his trouble, which just made his grin widen; that had cute down too, so he was sorted. Then he set about working his way across the buffet table and making every choice he made as sexual as possible. Even he was beginning to feel a bit hot under the collar by the time he was half done.

"So," a semi-familiar voice said from behind him as he went to pick up a carrot stick, "are you trying to give every man in the room a hard on, or do you eat like that all the time."

It seemed he wasn't going to have to play much longer and he turned and grinned at Bill Kaulitz who was now standing a half metre or so away.

"I was bored," he said unrepentantly, "and it seemed like fun."

That earned him a grin back.

"Hi," Bill said, "Kiro isn't it?"

"That's me," he replied and put his carrot stick down to offer his hand, "and I'd have to be dead not to know you're Bill."

Bill grinned a bit wider at that and shook the offered limb.

"Pleased to meet you without hundreds of slathering fans all over the place," Bill said, coming to stand next to him and peering at the buffet table. "This party is getting more boring by the minute isn't it?"

"I don't know," Kiro said, giving his companion a sideways look, "I think it's beginning to look up."

Flirting wasn't something he had been very good at as a teenager, but his current life had given him a lot of practice. The way Bill's eyes slid over him then let him know his interest had been noted.

"You might be right," Bill replied, finally picking something from one of the trays and popping it delicately into his mouth.

They chatted for a little while, picking over the offerings in front of them, flirting all the way, but it was clear to Kiro they were both holding back because there were eyes on them.

"Want to find somewhere where everyone's not watching us?" Bill finally said when they all but bumped into each other while reaching for the same tray. "I feel like a goldfish in a bowl and I'd rather talk without a hundred eyes keeping score."

"Sure," Kiro replied, very glad that he hadn't had to make the suggestion.

Given how hot under the collar all the flirting had made him, he would like nothing better.

"We can talk if you like," he said and gave Bill a very suggestive look before glancing around the room looking for an escape route.

For a moment Bill looked startled, but then relaxed again and tilted his head towards a darker spot on the other side of the room. Carrying their plates of half eaten and, in Kiro's case, mostly forgotten, food they threaded their way through the throng of people and found a less public place to chat.

"How long do you think it'll be before people forget we're here?" Bill asked, smiling as if Kiro had just said something funny.

Bill really did seem to be very good at the public act.

"The back side of never," Kiro replied, playing along, "but give it five minutes and you go one way, I'll go the other and I'll meet you down that little corridor over there."

He saw the excitement spark in Bill's eyes then and it was more than clear that Bill didn't do this often. That made it all the better as far as Kiro was concerned, since neither did he. It actually took a great deal to get his attention and he usually liked to get to know people a lot longer; Bill Kaulitz was an exception to most rules.

"Sounds like a plan," Bill told him, remarkably managing to change his expression to one of partial disinterest.

Kiro was impressed and did his best to look equally bored.

By the time they went their separate ways he was pretty sure no one would have suspected they had any interest in seeing each other anymore. Bill had polite dismissal down to an art form and when Bill left him Kiro almost thought it was real. He gave it another minute or so then ditched his plate and wove himself back into the crowd to get to the other side of the room.

He made it before Bill, in fact Bill took another ten minutes to turn up and he was beginning to worry.

"Sorry," Bill said the moment he appeared, "I got caught by David."

"Management," Kiro said, feeling just a little nervous all of a sudden, "can't live without them, not allowed to install a mute option."

Bill really was stunning, all long lines and fine features and Kiro suddenly felt very short and not in the least bit fabulous. He had a momentary flashback of being a teenager and overlooked as the geek of the class.

"Just so you know," Bill said and Kiro gained the distinct impression that Bill was as nervous as he was, "I don't normally do things like this."

That made Kiro's chest flutter a little, but he tried to ignore it.

"Me neither," he said with what he hoped was a confident grin; "you know every one has a list, well mine just has one name on it; yours."

If was quite dim in the little corridor, but Kiro thought Bill might have been blushing.

"Tom says I'm too picky," Bill replied, eyes roaming all over him; "I think his list is about four pages long, mine's very short."

"Discerning," Kiro said, not really believing he was actually having this conversation with Bill 'I am king of the world' Kaulitz; "not picky."

It was so clichéd, but Kiro grabbed Bill's hand and then dragged him in to the cupboard he had noticed earlier. It smelt of cleaning products, but Kiro really didn't care as Bill reciprocated by pushing him back against the now closed door and quite neatly removing all concept of personal space. Given that Kiro felt his cock go from semi-hard to hard in a matter of moments and he could feel an answering hardness against his thigh he thought they were both on the same page. It occurred to him that kissing may be a little intimate for what really was a quickie in a cupboard, but he reached up and grabbed the back of Bill's head, bringing their mouths together before that thought really rooted in his brain.

He was very grateful when Bill kissed back enthusiastically and he opened his mouth, sucking in Bill's tongue the moment it was offered. The tongue stud was a new sensation and he wasn't overly sure he liked it when it clacked against his teeth, but the way Bill's hands were beginning to wander distracted him more than enough.

Being a lot shorter than Bill he was at a severe disadvantage when it came to deciding how this was all going, so he reciprocated with the wandering hands. It was as his hand brushed down Bill's chest that Bill squeaked quite loudly and pulled back a bit. Only then did Kiro realise there was something much harder than flesh under his fingers.

"Nipple ring," Bill said in a breathless voice, "quite new, quite tender."

Kiro moved his hand.

"We'll leave that for a little later then," he said and grinned before reinitiating the kiss.

The kissing and the over the clothes groping was nice, but Kiro soon wanted more and he decided to up the game by attacking Bill's belt. It was an ornate buckle, but Kiro was good with belts and it undid easily and, as he slipped his hand into Bill's trousers, he was rewarded with the most wanton moan. They were being quiet because they were hiding in a cupboard, but that didn't take any of the heat out of the sound. Kiro could have been palming his own cock for all the difference it made.

Bill broke the kiss, but moved on to his neck, nibbling down the side and sending shivers through Kiro as he did his best to concentrate. Now the tongue stud came into its own because Bill seemed to know just how to use it on skin to make his victims shudder in delight.

"Oh god," Bill moaned into his ear a little while later.

So far Bill had not reciprocated with any attention to his cock, but Kiro was rather enjoying the reactions he was getting for his trouble, so he didn't overly care. Bill was a very responsive human being and the feedback was fantastic. For every touch Kiro gave, Bill had a reaction and it was amazing to experience.

"Can I ..?" Bill asked, most of the sentence being lost in a moan, but Kiro wasn't about to say no.

He hummed rather than spoke an affirmative and he felt Bill's cock twitch in his hand in response. Then Bill was gone, or rather disengaged and it took him a while to figure out what had happened. Then he looked down and his brain whited-out with shock because Bill was on his knees and was working very diligently on opening his jeans. Kiro felt most of the blood left in his brain travel south leaving him lightheaded as Bill freed him from his jeans and his underwear and sucked him into that oh so clever mouth.

Any brain power Kiro might have had left was now summarily nuked and he grabbed the door handle and one of the near by shelves to prevent himself falling over and completely making an idiot out of himself. Any previous dislike of the tongue stud was irrevocably forgotten as it turned out Bill knew how to use it down there as well. For long moments of time Kiro forgot how to breathe as every thought in his head was concentrated on his cock. He decided after a little while that he had died and gone to heaven and at some point in his life he had been a very, very good boy because he was in paradise.

The fact that his nerves went from screaming 'too much' to 'more' and back again was doing nothing for his equilibrium and eventually he actually had to pull Bill's hair to get him to stop. Bill's eyes were dark with completely blown pupils when the younger musician looked up at him and it was clear Bill was almost as far gone as he was, but he wasn't about to do anything as irresponsible as coming all over Bill Kaulitz.

With willpower he was sure he didn't always have, he dragged Bill to his feet and demanded another kiss while slipping his hand into Bill's jeans. It didn't take Bill more than a second or so to get the idea and then a hand took over from that incredible mouth and they both reached for what they wanted. Given the tremors he could feel in Bill, Kiro was sure they were as desperate as each other and they were not going at each other with finesse anymore.

The angle was awkward and the setting not overly conducive, but that didn't seem to matter to either of them. Bill went first, breaking away from the kiss and muffling his cry in Kiro's shoulder, but to Bill's credit it didn't stop him seeing to Kiro for long and Kiro didn't need much more help to fall over the edge as well.

The heavy tightness in his balls constricted even more, then he was coming into Bill's hand, biting his lip to prevent himself making enough noise so most of the party would know what they were up to. It was difficult; he had always been quite vocal when it came to sex and his orgasm almost made him forget where he was.

Kiro let his head fall back against the door and did his best to breathe. That had been incredible. Either he had been without sex for longer than he remembered or Bill did it for him with a capital 'D'.

"Wow," he said very quietly because he wasn't sure his voice was actually working.

"Yeah," Bill said, moving back slightly from where they were leaning on each other.

Bill looked a little dazed, almost as if he couldn't believe he had just done that, but at least Bill did have the presence of mind to grab a box of tissues from the shelf beside them and hand him some. It took him a little while to clean himself up and put his clothes back together and then he remembered why things like this weren't advisable; suddenly it was incredibly awkward.

"Look," Bill said as they just avoided each other's gazes, "I'm not very good at this, so I'm going to just lay it on the line. I enjoyed that..."

Kiro waited for the 'but now I've got to go' and tried to harden his heart that he had promised would not be involved.

"...and I like you and I'd like to meet up sometime," Bill continued and Kiro almost didn't realise what his companion was saying for a while. "Of course I'll just shut up if you're not interested."

It dawned on Kiro he was just standing there and then he smiled.

"I'd love to," he said and went fishing for his phone, only to realise he didn't have it.

Bill already had his in his hand by the time he looked back up.

"What's your number?" Bill asked with a delighted smile.

Kiro quickly rattled off his number and then sheepishly showed his empty hands to Bill.

"Strify borrowed my phone earlier because his battery died," he said with a little shrug, "and he forgot to give it back, but if you ring me later I can save your number."

"Sounds good," Bill agreed brightly, bouncing on the balls of his feet.

It was hard to believe, but Kiro thought he might just have a new friend and Bill seemed as pleased as punch.

"So, how do we get out of here?" Bill asked after a few moments and Kiro had to admit it was a good question.

If anyone caught them coming out of a cupboard together there would be hell to pay. Then he had an idea and pulled a packet of cigarettes from his pocket. The party was being held in one of the few completely non-smoking venues and he knew the perfect excuse for hiding. If they got caught sneaking out of a cupboard smelling of smoke no one would think twice. Bill grinned and took an offered cigarette. It really was a terrible habit, but it did have its uses.

====

Kiro knew Strify had warned him and he hadn't listened, but it didn't stop the ache every day that went past and Bill didn't call. Somewhere along the line his heart as well as his dick had become involved and there was nothing he could do about it.

"Hey there," Strify said, sitting down next to him on the sofa, "I'm not going to say I told you so, but there are three tubs of Hagen Dazs in the freezer and we can worry about the calories later if you want to feel better."

He managed to conjure up a smile at that; Strify really could be very sweet when he wanted to be.

"Um, actually there's two," he said sheepishly, "I ate one last night."

Strify put his hand on his heart and opened his mouth in a very overdramatic representation of shock.

"You had an icecream binge and you didn't invite me?" Strify said and did a good impression of that being the end of the world.

If Kiro hadn't known Strify so well he might have believed it.

"I was privately moping," he replied, feeling somewhat better just by having Strify there.

"No, Kiro, I'm afraid you weren't," Strify told him, "but we decided someone had to stage an intervention because you're beginning to infect the rest of us now too."

"Oh right, thanks," he said, even though he didn't mean it, "I only count when I'm affecting you."

Strify sighed at that and rolled his eyes.

"Yes, of course, that's it," Strify said and patted him on the knee, "now hurry up and cheer up so Yu can come out of his bedroom without wanting to jump out the window."

That made Kiro crack another smile; overdramatic was Strify's middle name.

His big problem was that he wasn't good at casual relationships even when he tried to tell himself he was. He needed some relief just like any other hot blooded male and sometimes his hormones got the better of his head and then he had to deal with the consequences. He'd gone into the whole thing with his eyes wide open and if he and Bill had just had some fun and then brushed each other off he thought he might have been okay, but Bill had been so insistent that he wanted his phone number. It had seemed like Bill had actually enjoyed his company for the time they had spent together, but clearly he had been forgotten just as quickly.

Bill had not been what Kiro had expected and he actually liked the singer, which, it seemed, was how his heart had ended up mixed up in all of this. Mentally shaking himself he sat up straighter; this was just silly.

"Let's go for the ice cream," he decided; it was time he shook the doldrums and a pig out with Strify sounded like fun.

They would both pay for it later, but some things just had to be done.

Half an hour and a good portion of ice cream later the door bell rang.

"I'll get it," Kiro said, standing up.

There was nothing like pretending they were a couple of teenage girls to cheer him up, so he was almost feeling cheerful as he headed for the door.

"Don't leave me with the rest of this ice cream by myself for long," Strify warned from the living room; "if I eat it all you are taking the consequences."

"I'll be right back," Kiro promised with a laugh and then opened the door.

He had to look up at the person standing there because they were a great deal taller than he was and then he froze.

"Um, hi," said what appeared to be a very nervous Bill Kaulitz.

For a moment Kiro considered that he might have fallen asleep on the sofa and was, in fact, dreaming.

"Hi," he said, at a loss for anything else to say.

"Um," Bill said pulling off his very large sunglasses, "Tom managed to drop my phone down the toilet and the sim card went up in smoke. I was going to call, but I lost all my numbers and so I asked around and eventually I found someone who knew where you lived and we were in town so I thought that ..."

"Come in," Kiro said as he finally found his voice and Bill looked incredibly relieved and stopped talking.

Bill Kaulitz was standing on his doorstep, well actually Bill was stepping over it, but it all amounted to the same level of disbelief. Kiro's brain was having trouble coming up with a sensible thought.

"We were ... um ... just ... um ..." Kiro started to say the first thing in his head, "eating ice cream, want some?"

He mentally kicked himself the moment it was out of his mouth because it was so lame, but Bill's face lit up with a grin.

"What flavour?" Bill asked, sounding incredibly pleased.

"Well we just started the strawberry," Kiro said, deciding that he might as well dig himself in deeper since he was already up to his neck, "and there is a little vanilla, but I left Strify alone with it so that might all be gone now."

Bill grinned at that.

"I should warn you I'm mean with a spoon," Bill said and Kiro grinned back.

"As mean as with a tongue?" Kiro asked before his brain caught up and then blushed as he realised what he'd said.

The way Bill blushed as well made him feel a little better.

"Could be," Bill replied, recovering somewhat.

"Hey, Strify," Kiro said, leading the way into the living room, "prepare to defend the ice cream, we have a guest."

The look on Strify's face was a picture when the singer turned and saw Bill, and Kiro threw himself onto the sofa with a huge smile.

"Have a seat," he invited and Bill took the offer.

"Hi," Bill said brightly.

"Hi," Strify replied, or at least tried to, but since he still had a spoon in his mouth it came out rather mumbled.

Kiro grinned even more and passed Bill the spare spoon they'd got out in case Yu chose to join them. He felt like he was floating and the way Bill beamed back at him made him forget his previous depression completely.

"So," Bill said, waving the spoon around experimentally, "who do I have to duel to get some of this ice cream."

Strify's face finally lost its astounded expression and Strify took the spoon out of his mouth.

"That would be me," was the challenging reply.

Kiro sat back; this was going to be fun.

The End