The fact that Miyuki actually thought he could get away with disappearing into his dorm and pretending to be sick the day of his birthday only goes to show that his catcher was impressively dumb. It was true that Eijun didn’t have the best memory for dates, and couldn’t plan anything to save his life. The only thing he was worse at than planning was keeping secrets, and the only thing that beat that was Mario Kart.
Luckily, Miyuki was easier than Mario Kart.
Besides, Eijun was lucky, he happened to be best friends with Harucci and Mochi-senpai, and that made up for all of his mental deficiencies.
“Oi, Miyuki Kazuya, open up!” Eijun yelled, knocking on the door of his dorm. It was already after practice, and it had taken all day to set things up. The sun was disappearing with it’s last drags, splashing warm light against the bottom lip of the door. He tapped his foot impatiently, staring at the vivid outlines of a shadow for a moment before realizing that there was no sound from inside.
The pitcher blinked and then frowned.
Rummaging in his pockets, he yanked out a set of keys and cheerfully unlocked the door. After being best friends for months, and more often than not sleeping in Miyuki’s dorm the man had finally just given him one of the extra keys so he could stop opening the door for him all the time. Eijun had very successfully scared his catcher out of his skin more than once when the man swung open the door only to find Eijun doing homework or passed out on the bed.
Eijun loved his dorm and his dorm mates, but he also enjoyed being quiet and alone more than other people assumed and Miyuki’s room was like a safe haven of comfort.
The door clicked open, late afternoon sun spilling in. It was dark and quiet and it took a second of squinting to find a human shaped lump curled up on the bed.
So perhaps Miyuki hadn’t been lying when he said he was sick.
“Mmm- Ei’un?” The lump rolled over and a head popped out of the top, searching blearily in the darkness. The pitcher flushed and closed the door, choosing not to turn the lights on and swiping a water bottle off the desk.
“Hey, Kazuya, sorry, I would’ve come sooner, I didn’t think- ha, I didn’t think you were actually sick.” Eijun whispered, padding to sit on the bed. The lump squirmed, resituating to curl around Eijun. He smiled and pressed the bottle against Miyuki’s forehead. The man sighed, listing into the cooler temperature absentmindedly.
“S’okay, why’re you here though?” Kazuya lifted his head, doing his best attempt to look attentive. All Ejiun could see was the swirl of messy bedhead and soft, drooping eyes. There was a flush to him as well, it wasn’t a very imposing figure to cut.
“Well, I swung by to check in and possibly drag you out, but then I found you sleeping, so I’ve been turned into a nursemaid now, apparently.” Eijun said, leaning forward and pressing the back of his hand to Miyuki’s forehead. It was warm, but not feverish.
“Ha, serves you right.” Miyuki said.
Eijun flicked him.
“Anyway, you think you can muster the strength to get dinner?” He asked. Miyuki groaned.
“Is it really that late?” The covers rustled and flopped over. Miyuki sat up, creaky and achey. “Alright, let’s get some rice in my body, or I’ll probably keel over.”
Eijun snorted, and stood up, holding out a hand. Miyuki looked up, pushing on his glasses sloppily and shoving his feet into the slippers tucked under the bed. He grabbed the proffered hand and hauled himself up, shirt off kilted enough to expose a collarbone and pajama pants slung low on his hips.
“We can just go like this, it’s not like anyone cares.” Eijun said. Miyuki shrugged in agreement, yawning. He did grab a sweatshirt hanging off the bed frame, slapping on a hat as a final thought. Eijun opened the door. Cold November swept inside immediately and the pitcher was glad for his own jacket.
“You just couldn’t go one dinner without your hat, huh?” He teased.
“Shut up, my hair looks awful.” Miyuki whined.
The walk to the cafeteria was quick, even with Miyuki yawning and shuffling along at about half the speed he usually went. He was glancing around, eyes completely unfocused with an unusually slouched posture. One could tell from just a glance that the catcher was tired, but he didn’t seem too under the weather, the day’s rest had done him good. Eijun was suddenly glad he’d been busy, because he definitely would have bothered the man earlier otherwise.
When they arrived at the cafeteria doors Eijun reached out and rattled the doorknob, then knocked against them three times. Miyuki didn’t even notice the weird behavior. There were three muffled slams in response and Eijun grinned.
“C’mob, let’s get you some food.” He said, ushering his catcher forward. The door opened and he stepped through-
And was promptly blasted by the entirety of the first string, the coaches, and then some all yelling ‘Surprise!’ at once.
It was completely worth the effort.
Miyuki’s face froze, and then his eyes widened. It was an expression of pure wonder, and one the pitcher felt singularly privileged to have caused. The cheers broke off to individual shouts and Eijun leaned forward against his catcher.
“Happy birthday, Kazuya.” He murmured. Miyuki swallowed, the bobbing of his adam’s apple visible from this close and then he looked over, craning his head to make eye contact.
“You… you did this?” He said. Eijun smiled, something private and soft.
“Well, I figured it would pass in silence otherwise. I do have a present, by the way, but I’ll give it to you later.” Eijun said, and then cleared his throat. “Now, come on, there’s cake to eat, and then you can go back to sleep.”
Kazuya rolled his eyes, and if he had to blink away something mysteriously wet, well, no one knew.
“Ah, Miyuki, there you are.” Kazuya felt like he’d been punched in the stomach and jerked up to find Chris smiling down at him.
“Chris-senpai, I, I didn’t think you’d be here.” He said, almost squeaking. The half-Japanese man flashed a look over to Eijun, who appeared to be in the midst of telling a story, all wheeling arms and ridiculous grins. Kazuya swallowed.
“I couldn’t very well miss a party, besides, today you’ve become an adult.”
Honestly, Kazuya had completely forgotten about his birthday. It was a big deal, of course, turning eighteen always was, but the celebration with his father wouldn’t be for another week or so, and he had been distracted with everything else that had been going on.
“Thank you.” He said earnestly, and they continued chatting for a bit before others came up to congratulate him and Chris flashed a final, proud smile before meandering off to chat with others.
Kuramochi and Haruichi, were the real masterminds, he figured out.
“Kyaha, as if were going to forget, if you imply I’m that bad again I’ll kick you.” The shortstop slung an arm over his shoulder, squeezing threateningly even as he laughed.
“Happy birthday, Miyuki-san, Ei-chan said you were a bit under the weather? I hope you feel better.” The younger Kominata flashed a small smile.
It was a little overwhelming. He always had people paying attention to him, but that was because he was the captain, and it was his job to lead. Positive attention like this was different.
Even Tetsu-san was there, and his first thing after a terse congratulations was to gesture forward very seriously. Kazuya nearly rolled his eyes at the shōgi invitation, shaking his head ruefully. Spitz-senpai was yelling, Zono-senpai looked happy, there was cake, and even the coach sent him a respectful nod. He also received a few cards and gifts, small things, a scarf from Ryo-san, an large package of athletic socks from Chris.
Practical, just like him.
He felt like he might pass out.
It was a half hour into the party when Eijun reappeared, obviously having just finished speaking with Chris, as he was almost glowing.
“Miyuki Kazuya, you look tired, wanna head out?” He yelled, barely sparing a glance over his shoulder to Kuramochi. They apparently communicated telepathically because a moment later he was sweeping his jacket back up and pulling it on.
“Don’t go deciding my plans for me, Bakamura.” Kazuya teased without heat, secretly glad for a reason to leave. It was amazing for people to not only remember his birthday, but also plan a celebration, but excitement didn’t make him less sick.
He was also curious about Eijun’s present.
“Have a good night.” Chris waved and both pitcher and catcher waved enthusiastically because if there was one thing they could agree on at all times it was that Chris-senpai was the best.
Everyone else yelled out their goodbye’s, while a few jeers were thrown in over the fact that they were leaving together.
“Don’t get too close now!”
“Leave the birthday boy for the rest of us!”
“If he’s limping tomorrow, I’m looking at you!”
Eijun flushed in embarrassment. Kazuya cackled
“Shut up! I am not a threat to Bakayuki’s virtue!” The pitcher yelled back, stomping out of the cafeteria. Kazuya was nearly in tears laughing. If only he knew.
By the time they got back, Kazuya had never been so grateful to see his bed. He collapsed down, only pausing long enough to yank off his hat, and jacket. The slippers flopped off his feet from gravity alone, collapsing in the pile he’d left on the floor. He sighed contently, the bed soft and comfortable.
Then Kazuya became aware of Eijun dithering by the doorframe.
“Oi, Eijun, get in here already, you’re letting out the heat.”
The door closed and there was the telltale sound of footsteps before Eijun sat on the other bed.
The timidity was out of character and irritating.
“So, you said you’d give me your present later, right? Well, it’s later.” Kazuya turned his head to grin, only to falter at the sight of a flushing Eijun. His stomach dropped, toes curling against the hardwood floor. “I thought you said you weren’t a threat to my virtue.” The catcher teased, smirking, but Eijun didn’t start yelling.
In fact he just looked sort of mortified.
“Um, r-right. I’m just- I forgot-“ He turned for the door and Kazuya jerked into movement, grabbing his hand. It was warm and big and lined with calluses from pitching every day for years.
“Woah, don’t freak out on me just yet, Bakamura.” He said, squeezing. “I won’t bite, unless of course you want me to.”
Kazuya has never seen the pitcher so nervous, not even when he had the yips, the man can’t make eye contact and is biting into his lip like he plans to chomp right through it. Making a snap decision, Kazuya doesn’t let go of his hand and instead pulls him closer, so Eijun is standing between his knees, practically towering over him. He always did better with physical contact, and Kazuya figures he should probably do something that won’t involve his foot in his mouth for the third time in as many minutes.
Golden eyes flicker up, flashing over his face before Eijun sighed and flushed a deeper red.
“I did get you a present, it’s on your desk, but I, um-“ He faltered, and Kazuya found that while he normally hated waiting, he could probably wait for an eternity for the rest of that sentence. “I also had something- that I wanted to talk to you about.” Eijun sucked in a breath and tugged at his hands. Kazuya held on and the pitcher scowled. “I’m not going to run away you numb nut, I’m getting your present.”
With a snicker, Kazuya let him go, feeling a bit bereft without those hands in his. Which was probably the most sickening thought he’s ever had, but hell, might as well go down with the ship.
“When did you even put that in here? I’ve been in my room all day.” Kazuya said, gaping slightly when Eijun reached into the unused closet on the right side of the room and pulled out a wrapped package. It was a bit messy, and you could see the tape, it was especially funny as the paper was definitely for christmas not a birthday.
Kazuya said as much.
“Oh, shut up. I wasn’t to buy a whole roll for one gift. Besides, what’d you think I was gonna’ do, cover it in little baseballs, maybe draw a heart?” Eijun sneered, rolling his eyes.
“Look who’s getting uppity, I think I’m rubbing off on you.”
“Just open the damn present.”
He did. Inside was a book, relatively plain, blue, and was just named ‘Recipes’. Kazuya’s breath caught and he cracked it open. A photo was taped inside, the first string, along with the past first string, taken after their practice game earlier in the fall. And there were notes in the bottom, little congratulations, signatures. One just said.
‘Happy Birthday, Bastard.’ He had an inkling of who that might’ve been.
Another said ‘now you have a girly book to go along with your girly hobby, four eyes’. He would eat his glasses if that wasn’t Kuramochi.
Tetsu-san’s was only one word. ‘Shōgi?’ Good god. Wait, tacked on underneath was a tiny message, ‘don’t worry so much, you’re doing great’.
Kazuya was not going to cry. He was absolutely not going to cry.
What was he supposed to say? Thank you? He flipped through the book and realized that the recipes were handwritten, and from all over the place, an odd amalgamation of types and styles. Oh shit, one had handwriting he’d recognize anywhere.
In case you want a challenge. - Chris It was an American recipe, something called chili, though heaven knows what that meant.
“It’s from all of us. It’s a bunch of recipes from everyone’s family. I thought about just buying a cookbook, but seeing as a lot of the senpai are gone now, a present from everyone seemed better. Do you, uh, like it?”
Did he like it.
Fuck, if the panic attacks, or the feelings talks didn’t totally ruin Kazuya’s credibility with Eijun, this was about to. He was absolutely not going to get a word out without busting into gross tears, so he went for the next best thing. Setting the book reverently to the side, he stood and stalked across the room to where Eijun was fidgeting nervously beside his desk. He looked irrationally afraid that Kazuya was going to punch him. Instead he yanked his pitcher forward, wrapping his arms tightly enough to restrict air and burying his face in the man’s shoulder.
“Do I like it?” He snorted, the words muffled against Eijun’s hoodie. “I am just on this side of hysterics, and the kid asks if I like it.” And there they were, right on time, the knot in Kazuya’s throat was suffocating, but as Eijun’s arms squeezed back he wasn’t quite sure he’d ever felt happier, or more appreciated in his entire life.
Did he like it, fucking Eijun.
“So that’s a yes?” Eijun squeaked out. Kazuya couldn’t help it, he started laughing, his entire body shaking with it. He pulled back with a grin, lopsided and vaguely open-mouthed, all of his teeth showing.
“Yes, now can I please kiss you?” He lived for the moments he could strike the pitcher speechless, but this one took the cake. Eijun’s eyes widened comically, grip going limp for a moment, but he ended up having the last laugh. Before Kazuya could move, Eijun had snaked his hands up to his face, and surged upward.
The actual kiss was deceptively light, and while chaste, something warm unfurled inside Kazuya. It wasn’t fireworks and excitement, that was reserved for Eijun’s pitching. No, it was like coming home. This time Kazuya started it, cupping the back of Eijun’s head and sinking against him.
Eijun’s head was spinning. This was not going to plan, nothing had really gone to plan all day, honestly.
But Eijun wasn’t really the type to follow the plan anyway, and as long as one reached the end objective it didn’t really matter how they got there in his opinion. He did rather mourn the loss of a perfect shojō moment, though.
Or perhaps the first kiss after an important gift could count.
Eijun didn’t really have the capacity to care.
Miyuki’s lips were soft and warm and the planes of his jaw was something Eijun had been wanting to run his fingers along for weeks. Actual weeks, that was a long time to ignore temptation for him, it had to be a record, or something.
“You’re totally messing up the plan.” Eijun grumbled, failing in his attempt to look annoyed when he was smiling like Christmas just came early.
“Oh, there was a plan?” Miyuki murmured, close enough that Eijun could feel the air moving against his face, and feel the vibrations under the palm of his hand.
“Yes! I was going to ask you out to dinner first, because at least I know the proper order of things.” Miyuki laughed, looking ever so slightly down with those sharp, gold eyes. Eijun was sincerely shocked he hadn’t popped a boner yet, it was definitely coming. Hell, sometimes it happened for no reason at all.
“Of course it was for food, did you have a place in mind?” Miyuki said.
“Mmm, your favorite place in Tokyo. You know the area after all, and I figured it would be more comfortable.” Eijun said. Miyuki blinked and flexed his hand against Eijun’s shoulders.
Were they still having this conversation? They could be kissing, that would be even better.
“Mmm, I’m always thoughtful, Bakayuki.” And that was enough talking. He pressed forward again before Miyuki could continue teasing him, reveling in the warmth and comfort in the action.
It was a little awkward, but this wasn’t his first kiss, so at least he’d avoided that bout of humiliation. His cheek caught on Miyuki’s glasses for the fifth time before the catcher irritably shoved them up onto the top of his head, pinning his hair back as well.
The next one involved Miyuki angling his head just right and then swiping his tongue along Eijun’s bottom lip. A spark of heat ran through him and his hands spasmed for a second. He opened his mouth, sighing as their bodies sank closer together. Miyuki stroked the roof of his mouth, which sent a delightful feeling right down to his toes, and he traced the other’s teeth, basking in pleasure when Miyuki moaned against his lips.
“God, you’re perfect.” Miyuki muttered hungrily.
Oh, there was the boner.
The praise ripped a small sound out of him and he canted up against Miyuki before pulling away with a gasp. It took more than a few seconds of heaving breaths before Eijun could think clearly enough to speak Japanese.
“I’m glad you liked your gift.” He smiled. “And that you accepted my invitation. Now, I’ve got planning to do, and you have sleep to get.” The urge to pull the catcher over to his bed was feeling stronger by the second, and for once, Eijun wanted his own dorm. Eijun settled on poking the older man in the chest and grinning.
Then it hit him.
“Oh my god, I just made out with a sick person!”
Miyuki’s cackling followed him all the way out the door.