Kaidoh lets Inui in. "Thank you for inviting me," Inui says. Two months training with Kaidoh, two weeks dating, or whatever this is, and this is the first time he's seen Kaidoh's house.
Kaidoh's been over to Inui's twice, but that was before this thing. Some hand-holding, some sitting next to each other on the team bus, Kaidoh's knee nearly touching Inui's. Two quick kisses in the back of the club room before Horio almost caught them.
Inui thinks that's dating. He looks at Kaidoh, his bare head, bare feet, bare arms. Inui wants to touch him everywhere. He does touch Kaidoh, three fingers on Kaidoh's shoulder, his thumb on Kaidoh's collarbone.
"They're out," Kaidoh says. "For the afternoon." He looks down.
Inui looks down too, at the faint flush on Kaidoh's cheeks, at the rise and fall of his ribcage. His own pulse is elevated and he can't make himself want to count it.
Kaidoh turns and Inui's hand falls away. Kaidoh's mother comes into the room and Kaidoh introduces them.
"Inui-kun," Kaidoh's mother says. "Thank you so much for taking care of Kaoru."
"It's nothing." Inui smiles, at both of them, and to himself.
"Please continue to look after him." She smiles back. "Kaoru, I'm taking Hazue shopping after his guitar lesson, so we'll be back about five." She turns back to Inui. "Kaoru doesn't have many friends, so I'm glad he has such a nice boy to take care of him."
"Mom!" Kaidoh growls. She laughs and the door closes behind her. Kaidoh looks up at Inui, meets his gaze for a moment. "I have a TV in my room," he says, "if you want to watch something."
Such a nice boy. Inui's stomach twists. "Let's do racquet swings in the yard."
"Will you help me with my math homework?" Kaidoh stops Inui by the cafeteria. "It my first class after lunch."
He's not meeting Inui's eyes today. He's looking to the side, though all that's there is the wall, a few torn posters still advertising clubs that need members. His mouth is turned down, just a little, and Inui wants to put his thumb in the corner, run it over Kaidoh's lower lip.
"The clubhouse should be free," Kaidoh says.
Inui puts his hand in his pocket. "The library is better for studying."
"I think I hurt my ankle." Kaidoh slows to a jog, stops by a bench and sits down.
"Your gait looks fine to me." Running behind Kaidoh, watching his shoulders, his thighs, his ass, Inui has been watching everything but Kaidoh's gait. Has been thinking about everything he wants to do.
"Will you check?" Kaidoh lifts his left leg and Inui has no choice -- no choice -- but to put his hands on Kaidoh's calf, wrap his fingers around Kaidoh's ankle, press them into Kaidoh's skin.
"It's fine." Inui sit down too. He passes a hand over his face, looks out at the trees in the park. He tries to think about tennis, about math, about what a nice boy he is.
Kaidoh wipes his face with a towel. "Do you want to come over?" Maybe he's looking at the trees too. "I got that movie you recommended."
Inui can't even remember what movie that is. "We should hit some more," he says. "Nationals is almost here."
After practice, Inui can't find his tennis bag. When he finally locates it under a bench, everybody is on their way out. The club room is dusty and quiet. He changes with his back to the door and he's just doing up the buttons on his shirt when he hears someone come in.
He doesn't have to look to know it's Kaidoh. He can feel the tension in the air, almost hear it, a twanging string from Kaidoh's brother's guitar, and he doesn't turn around.
"Kaidoh," Inui says. "Do you want to go to the sports complex with me and use the ball machine?"
There's a rush of feet and Inui turns around just in time for Kaidoh to slam him back against the cubbies.
Blood throbs in Inui's head, in his ears. Kaidoh twists the front of Inui's shirt in his hand. He looks Inui in the eye and Inui can't look away, he's pinned, like a moth on a card.
"What the hell?" He shakes Inui. "What the hell is going on? I thought--" He shoves Inui away and Inui barely keeps his balance. "I thought you--"
Kaidoh turns his back. His shoulders heave and he swipes his arm across his eyes.
It's like Kaidoh punched Inui in the gut, the wind knocked out of him, pain radiating all through his body. "Kaidoh." Inui takes a step, then stops. "I do," he says. "I do."
"Then what the fuck is wrong with you?"
"I'm trying--" Inui takes a deep breath. "I'm trying to be a nice boy."
Kaidoh turns around. His face is red and his eyes are terrible: not angry, just sad. "Then be nice to me."
Inui's heart squeezes in his chest. His eyes sting, his breath stops. Then he's falling forward, reaching out, holding Kaidoh in his arms, crushing him, being crushed.
They slide to the floor and kiss and kiss, so badly at first, but Inui doesn't care. He gets one hand up the back of Kaidoh's shirt, Kaidoh pushes his knee between Inui's thighs, and they roll together until Kaidoh's phone rings.
"I'm with Inui-senpai," Kaidoh says. He looks at Inui. "Do you want to come over for supper?"
Inui nods. He's not a nice boy but he'll be as nice as he can. "Can we watch that movie afterwards?"
Kaidoh puts his phone in his bag. "We should probably go out to hit."
"You're not a nice boy either," Inui says and they make out until they're late for supper.