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There is no reason to leave.

 

Mikaela thought he was hearing those words in his head again. After all, they were constantly repeating themselves and reminding him to conform.

 

For once, it wasn’t just his own consciousness that reminded him what his people wanted him to think. 

 

“Mikaela, you must land this instant!”

 

Mikaela peered over his shoulder, his heart hammering quickly. Ferid stood below him, shouldered by Crowley. 

 

Ferid’s teal eyes were slits, his teeth were bared and his tail lashed viciously behind him, back and forth. His skin was glowing an almost blinding white from rage. It was startling.

 

Shoot, they’ve spotted me. Mikaela clicked his tongue and shrunk back, bringing his eyes back to the controls before him.

 

Mikaela was in trouble now, but there was no going back. He had his hands on the controls. The ship was slowly floating upwards, the engines firing up. His essentials were packed.

 

It wasn’t like he would land, apologize, and face the punishment he would get for trying to leave their planet- which was one of the core rules of their planet ιριδύων: no one can leave.

 

Mikaela’s fingers skirted along the floating screen in front of him, pressing the appropriate combinations. He sped off, looking ahead of him and away from Ferid’s angrily glowing teal eyes and snarling teeth. He went underneath archways of reddish stone, zipping over a zig-zag stream of brilliant blue water. The blueish grass fluttered under the gusts of wind that his ship released, though the glowing magenta stones that jutted out from the ground remained still. 

 

Mikaela knew he was being chased. He could hear Ferid’s demands and the engine of Crowley’s ship rumbling to life. 

 

It almost didn’t matter- Mikaela knew what he was doing. He had designed this ship specifically for long-distance travel and high speeds. He would be able to get away.

 

Still, it was a close chase, and of course- 

 

Mikaela veered the ship away from a sudden laser beam. The beam whacked one of the stony arches, causing a chunk to fly out and crash into the ground below.

 

They would stop at nothing to take him down. 

 

Mikaela’s tail twitched and lashed behind him. He licked his lips, fingers tapping on the screen before him. He narrowly missed another few shots, dodging the bright and deadly beams before they could potentially destroy his ship.

 

“If that’s how we’ll do this… then so be it,” Mikaela murmured to himself, a smirk on his lips as he pressed a couple more buttons. His own lasers shot out from his ship, flying straight behind him, followed by a resounding boom. 

 

He must have hit what he wanted to hit. The sound of Crowley’s ship crashing into the rocky walls of the arched structures was piercing. 

 

“Mikaela!!” Ferid’s voice was echoing and furious. “You won’t get away with this!”

 

Mikaela knew he’d have a price to pay if he ever returned. He set his engines at full speed directly towards their star, σφαίρα, which glowed bright at the end of the tunnel. 

 

As he passed under the last archway, he rose above the planet at an astonishing speed, enough to even steal Mikaela’s breath away. 

 

The stars were splayed out before him now, far off and waiting to be explored. 

 

Mikaela was going to do what no other φωτεινός had ever done. 

 

He was going to find out what was out there, in the vast unknown of space, and he wouldn’t give up.

 

— 

 

Yuuichirou had piles of papers, books, and pencils displayed haphazardly over his desk. Some pencils laid broken or too small to use anymore. Some books on astronomy and science laid open and were marked with sticky notes. Messy kanji was written all over every sticky note and paper strewn about the room.

 

He would've written in the books themselves, but not all of them were his. The ones he owned were riddled with his notes and highlighting over certain words.

 

He had been crouched over his desk for hours with nothing but a couple water bottles on his desk that were now empty. The small lamp on his desk illuminated the pages laid out. Some pages were graced by Yuuichirou's fingers as he occasionally tried to find certain words before jotting things down in his notably cluttered notebook.

 

Yuuichirou dressed comfortably half the time; studying constellations and stars and anything involving space and science did not require the latest fashion trends. Currently dressed in pajama pants and a hoodie, Yuuichirou was more than comfortable despite being crouched in a seemingly uncomfortable position.

 

"Yuu!"

 

The boy who owned the name jumped considerably, accidentally knocking down one or two books in the process. Yuuichirou took a moment to breathe and calm himself before setting his pencil down regrettably. He pushed himself up to move to his bedroom door.

 

"Yes?" Yuuichirou called back, a hand resting on the doorway for support while he leaned out into the hallway.

 

There was a momentary silence before Yuuichirou heard something thud against an unknown surface. A curse from his guardian followed. 

 

"Dammit-! Ah…” Guren sighed. "Are you gonna come down and eat or do you plan on holing yourself up in your room again?"

 

Yuuichirou let an amused smile pull over his lips. "I think I'll take the second option. What's for lunch?"

 

"Since you're not coming down, I won't care to tell you,” Guren retorted.

 

A roll of eyes was Yuuichirou's reaction, even if Guren couldn’t see him. "Fine by me, you old fart,” he murmured before shutting his door. He never closed it to begin with, it seemed. 

 

“No, I lied, get your ass down here and eat,” Guren called back up, earning a groan from Yuuichirou in response. He really didn’t want to go downstairs and lose the places he had marked mentally with the books he had been reading. At the same time, he didn’t want Guren coming upstairs just to personally drag him down and make sure he actually ate something.

 

Glancing longingly over at his books, Yuuichirou stepped out of his room and shut the door gently behind him.

 

“I’m coming, don’t get your knickers in a twist, alright?” Yuuichirou teased, speaking more-so to himself rather than calling out to Guren this time. He didn’t want to hear Guren’s quip in response, anyways.

 

Taking one slow step at a time, Yuuichirou made his way down the stairs, idly listening to the wood beneath his feet creak-- it was a pretty old house, and he could understand why it sounded like the would could give way underneath him to begin with, despite the wood still being strong enough to hold his weight.

 

The smell of food became more prominent the closer he got to the kitchen. He barely had time to process having a plate full of food being thrust into his face. 

 

Hamburgers and mac and cheese for lunch… sweet! He thought with a smile.

 

“Gee, thanks, Dad,” Yuuichirou grinned up at Guren, who scowled at him.

 

“I’d prefer it if you didn’t call me that.”

 

“Well, that’s no fun,” Yuuichirou muttered to himself, though the grin still stayed evident on his face. Taking a few steps back, he moved over to the dinner table with the intention to set his food down. He chewed on his bottom lip, debating on making a run for it back up to his room now that he actually had his food and Guren was still in the kitchen.

 

Deciding to be the rebel child Guren always dreaded, Yuuichirou grabbed his plate and sped walked back towards the stairs. Just as Guren was walking out of the kitchen, he paused and stared. “Wha- Yuu!” Guren hissed.

 

Yuuichirou grinned at him and wiggled his brows before darting up the stairs as carefully as he could with his newly acquired plate of food. He inhaled the smell of said food for a moment once he reached the top of the stairs, smiling to himself in his small victory as he reached out with one hand to open up his bedroom door. Despite the fact that he had been gone not even two minutes, walking into his room felt like he was walking into his own personal haven.

 

It was such a nice feeling.

 

With the hot plate in hand, he hurried over to his desk to sit down. Now he could both eat and study in peace. He would likely study more anyways; he had such a bad habit of forgetting to actually eat something. 

 

Before he could actually sit down and get back to work, he realized his door was open. He moved swiftly to fix that problem.

 

Just as Yuuichirou closed the door, he heard some kind of sound as if a plane were about to land but it was coming in too hot. 

 

way too hot.

 

Yuuichirou had very little time to react.

 

The walls and ceiling were shattered. A bright light made him close his eyes and shield his face. Yuuichirou went flying back into the door, and he lost his breath as he was whacked against it.

 

When he could hear again, he took in a deep breath, gasping loudly from the shock of such a crash. He heard the walls of his room crumbling and paper scattering.

 

Thankfully, whatever just crashed in his room didn't go through the second floor, but it was clear that Yuuichirou needed an entirely new bed and roof (not to mention his posters that were now torn).

 

Winded, Yuuichirou stared with wide eyes at what had crashed into his room.

 

It wasn't like any typical UFO that was shown in movies, but something entirely more advanced probably bigger. Faintly, he could hear Guren shouting behind the door, asking what was going on and if things were alright.

 

“Uh…” Yuuichirou couldn’t speak. He was in shock, and the sounds of Guren yelling faded away as he centered his focus on what the machine was in his room.

 

When he stood up off of the door, it flew open, whacking him in the back on its way.

 

“Ow!” Yuuichirou hissed. Guren glared at him, then stared at the thing in his room.

 

“What the hell!?” Guren yelled. “The house is fucking destroyed! What on earth is-“ Yuuichirou lifted a hand, cutting him off. His eyes were locked on the ship. Its doors were slowly opening.

 

“Is that a fucking alien?” Guren said, voice strained and almost terrified.

 

“I…” Yuuichirou tensed up. “I think so…”

 

Slowly, a head of blonde hair rose from the space ship. Cautiously, the alien looked around until his bright blue eyes locked on Yuuichirou and Guren. 

 

His tail shot straight up behind him, the tuft of blonde fur spiking out in shock. 

 

He stood up slowly, breath catching at the creatures. He wondered who they were and what planet he was on. He was surprised at how similar their appearance was to Mikaela’s- their species had similar facial features, and they stood on two legs as well. Mikaela wondered if their behaviors were at all similar. Experimentally, he smiled.

 

The taller creature, who’s name was Guren (though Mikaela did not know this yet), simply gawked at him. 

 

Mikaela stood upright, tail swishing curiously. He cautiously stepped out of his ship and approached them, then paused a few feet before them. 

 

The taller creature said something, and Mikaela tilted his head in confusion. 

 

“Ah, another language…” Mikaela said out loud, and the two stared back at Mikaela, just as confused. “Oh, I know what to do. Hold on.” 

 

Mikaela took another step closer. The taller creature stumbled backwards, eyes wide with shock. The smaller one with the brilliant green eyes stood still. He looked breathless with awe. Mikaela smiled at him, then reached up once he was close enough. 

 

“Wow… so soft,” Mikaela murmured when he touched his skin. “And warm…” Mikaela closed his eyes and leaned in, pressing his lips to Yuuichirou’s without any warning. 

 

The last thing Yuuichirou expected  was to have this creature kiss him. 

 

Mikaela's hand felt cold and almost leathery to an extent, making goosebumps erupt over his skin. His lips felt a little softer, but it wasn't something Yuuichirou had wanted to find out.

 

He stood, frozen in place as his face took on even more heat and began to tinge pink. Not only was this all too much and happening at once, but Yuuichirou felt dizzy and crowded.

 

Yuuichirou didn't give himself time to really take in the fact that he was being kissed before his hands suddenly shot up and shoved the creature away. He back pedaled further away from Mikaela quickly. His breathing was heavy as he glanced Mikaela up and down, his heart beating a bit too fast. 

 

His racing heart was mainly out of fear, but he would be lying if he wasn’t a bit embarrassed.

 

Mikaela’s tail lashed at the sudden push away, and he stared, confused as Yuuichirou rubbed at his mouth and turned… reddish in the face.

 

“Interesting…” Mikaela spoke, pupils dilating as he stared at the color on Yuuichirou’s face. He wondered if this species also changed color depending on their moods. 

 

“W-What the fuck?" Yuuichirou stammered, eyebrows furrowing.

 

Mikaela’s tail flicked with interest, but he stood upright once he understood Yuuichirou’s sudden outburst. 

 

Yuuichirou took in the sight of the creature once more, from Mikaela's blue eyes, blue skin, and his tail. The clothing he wore was odd as well. 

 

"I'd rather assume someone hired an actor rather than believe an alien is legit standing in my room right now,” he breathed out a shaky laugh and glanced up at Guren.

 

"Save yourself,” Yuuichirou whispered dramatically while reaching up to grip Guren's shoulder once he stood back up.

 

“Why the hell did you just kiss him!?” Guren yelled, making Mikaela tense up a bit and blink with confusion. At least he could understand this language now, thanks to Yuuichirou. 

 

“I have to be able to communicate,” Mikaela responded in their native tongue. Thanks to the kiss, he was able to speak whatever language they spoke, and in turn, he could understand them. It was one of the many features of φωτεινός that Mikaela was convinced was due to their past of traveling and mingling with other forms of life. Why else would this feature have evolved?

 

“Y-You speak Japanese?” Guren stammered.

 

“Is that this language?” Mikaela murmured. “Japanese…” his eyes looked up and down Guren’s body, then Yuuichirou’s. “My name is Μικαέλα, but in this language it seems to be… Mikaela.” He tilted his head. “What… what are you called?”

 

Guren brought a hand to his forehead and began rubbing. He suddenly had a headache, and he wasn't sure what to do, but he brushed off Yuuichirou's hand from his shoulder and nearly went to confront Mikaela.

 

Yuuichirou's hand shot out and grabbed Guren's arm to stop him.

 

"Guren, wait…” Yuuichirou slowly pulled his guardian back while he stared at Mikaela. If he really was from somewhere other than Earth, Yuuichirou was already interested in him.

 

Yuuichirou's passion was space and what could possibly be out there. He wasn't going to let Guren act recklessly unless Mikaela proved harmful. He did realize that he himself had acted a bit harshly, but the initial shock of having a huge ship crash into his room had more than scared the shit out of him. Now that he had a second to collect himself (and somewhat get over the fact that he was kissed by an alien), he was utterly fascinated by the creature that stood before them.

 

“… Mikaela, I'm Yuuichirou,” the boy introduced himself as he stepped in front of Guren. He held out his hand cautiously towards the creature. "The man behind me, that's Guren.”

 

Guren squinted at Yuuichirou, feeling uncertain about the entire thing. He was currently more concerned about how the hell he was going to fix the roofing and walls. It looked as if it’d cost a pretty penny…

 

Mikaela’s eyes widened at the foreign name. It was all so new to him. 

 

“Yuu-ichi-… rou…” Mikaela said slowly. His tail flicked curiously. It would take him time to get used to a name like that, but he would do his best. Mikaela’s eyes focused down at the hand extended to him, then fidgeted. What did that mean? What was he supposed to do with the hand? It must be a custom of their species. 

 

Unsure and tentative, Mikaela placed both hands on Yuuichirou’s extended one, then lifted it slowly, staring at the fingers folded lightly over his own. “Wow…” he whispered. “Warm…” 

 

Mikaela noticed the concerned and exhausted look on Guren’s face as he looked at the damage, but he focused back on Yuuichirou. 

 

“You…” Mikaela blinked a few times. “What are you? What is your species called?” Mikaela tilted his head, leaning closer to him and staring at his tannish skin. As he inched closer, a pinkish tint spread across Yuuichirou’s cheeks. It was really unusual… and with his bright green eyes and jet black hair, he was really… 

 

“… beautiful,” Mikaela whispered. “Whatever you are, you’re beautiful.” Mikaela’s eyes sparkled. He still was clasping Yuuichirou’s hand and his tail swayed from side to side calmly and elegantly. “I’m a φωτεινός, which is… ah… Foteinós, as you might say...” 

 

“H-Human…?” Yuuichirou practically squeaked out and stepped out of Mikaela's reach. His face felt too warm and he felt like his heart was going to burst because it was beating so fast. Bringing his hands up, Yuuichirou's pressed them against his own face in an attempt to cool himself down. His own hands were kinda cool now because of how cold Mikaela's skin felt.

 

Guren narrowed his eyes over at Mikaela and pushed past Yuuichirou to stand in front of ... whatever Mikaela was. He hadn't cared to pick up on what he had called himself.

 

"Listen, you clearly don't belong here and I don't like you flirting with my son, either,” he hissed out, ignoring the outburst of protest from Yuuichirou. "You've wrecked my house, kissed him, and already overstayed your welcome." Guren was more than irritated with the situation at hand.

 

Not to mention, he didn't know how much longer it would take for the neighbors to peek over and see whatever it was that had made such a noise.

 

"Guren..." Yuuichirou started. He then realized Guren had a point when it came to the house being a wreck now (not to mention his room). He didn't dare to look over at his desk and see if anything had been messed up or torn.

 

Mikaela tensed up, confused at what Guren was accusing him of. 

 

Flirting? What is that? Mikaela wanted to ask, but he figured now was not the time. He didn’t see the issue in kissing Yuuichirou either, since he only needed to learn the language. Did humans not do that? Mikaela glanced around the room again.

 

“Ah… I can fix it!” Mikaela stood upright, hands on his hips confidently. “Leave it to me! I’m a technician. I can fix this structure.” Mikaela looked around. “Ah, but I… I am unsure of the humans.” Mikaela scratched the back of his head and his tail curled downwards nervously. “You don’t seem too dangerous, but I can’t explore quite yet.”

 

He paused, glancing at them before blurting out, “can I stay here while I learn about the culture of the humans?” He smiled widely and added, “I can give you some of my technology in exchange!”

 

Yuuichirou paused and quickly pulled Guren back away from Mikaela once again. "Instead of technology, tell me about the constellations in your star system and I'll let you stay once my room is fixed up.”

 

He heard Guren begin to say something, but Yuuichirou held his hand up to shut him up for a second longer.

 

"I know you don't approve, Guren, and it's possible we'd be arrested by the government for housing an alien, but this could be my chance to make a huge discovery and learn about an entirely new race that wasn't created or evolved on Earth!” Yuuichirou glanced back at Guren, a wide grin on his face, before he returned his attention back to Mikaela.

 

"Will you be willing to tell me about them?" He pressed further, holding his hand out again towards Mikaela. "If so, you've got a deal but we need to... find a way to hide… all… of that." Yuuichirou glanced from the blue skin to his tail.

 

Mikaela’s tail flicked from side to side with excitement. A grin spread across his face and he took Yuuichirou’s hand in his own again, his eyes gleaming. He must have done the correct thing the first time! He leaned forward again. 

 

“I can change colors!” Mikaela blurted out. “It’ll take me a little while, but I can match the color of humans if I have to.”

 

“There’s more than one color,” Guren grumbled.

 

“Eh? Really!?” Mikaela stood upright, still gripping Yuuichirou’s hand. “So why can’t I stay my natural color?”

 

“Humans aren’t ever blue,” Guren said, voice flat and unamused.

 

“Oh…” Mikaela’s tail drooped momentarily. It wasn’t long before he perked back up. “Ah, but I can tell you anything!” Mikaela said to Yuuichirou. “As long as I can stay here and learn about the humans and this planet- ah, what is this planet called?”

 

An exasperated look pulled over Yuuichirou's face, but he sighed and managed to smile slightly. "It's called Earth…” He repeated the name again to clarify what their planet was called. He giggled a bit belatedly at the thought of a human with blue skin. Other than the Blue Man Group, not many others were blue.

 

"Of course, you can stay and learn as much as you want as long as you help me learn, too,“ Yuuichirou promised before he slowly pulled his hand away from Mikaela's hand. "But we should fix this up as soon as possible..." Yuuichirou murmured, frowning.

 

He wasn't sure where he was going to be sleeping tonight, but the couch wasn't too uncomfortable.

 

"Ah-... also how... far did you travel?" Yuuichirou asked, eyes widening in interest before his expression became one of concern. "Have you eaten at all…?” Yuuichirou suddenly remembered the meal he was going to eat before, but now, it was lost in the ruins of his room. He sighed regrettably, glancing pitifully at Guren and hoping he would cook more for him.

 

“Food can wait!” Mikaela said loudly, turning quickly to the ruins behind him. “Let me fix this first. Ah, but my ship…” He scrunched his eyebrows. “Where should it go…?”

 

“I guess we have room in the garage…” Guren sighed reluctantly, running his hand through his hair. “Look… Mikaela. I’m only agreeing to this because you’re fixing the disaster you created by crashing here.”

 

“Ah! You have my thanks!” Mikaela nodded eagerly. “I will get started immediately. But first, the ship…”

 

“I’ll open the garage door,” Guren said, then eyed the ship. “Is that thing okay…? Can you move it?”

 

“Of course,” Mikaela grinned, “I designed it so it wouldn’t be damaged so easily. It needs some touching up from the damage that… Earth? Is that it?” He glanced at Yuuichirou for confirmation before continuing. “Earth’s atmosphere damaged it a little, but it will be fine. I can move it.” Mikaela scurried over to the ship. “Where is this… ‘garage’ you speak of?”

 

“Fly it outside and go down towards the ground,” Guren said, “you will see an opening.”

 

Mikaela nodded quickly and got into his ship, sealing it up and powering it up after Guren left the room. He then slowly propelled his ship outside, and then he spotted a thin-looking door moving up. It revealed a small cave where some other ship-like machines were stored.

 

“Perfect!” Mikaela said to himself. He slowly maneuvered the ship inside, fitting it right next to one of the human machines. When he got out of the ship again, he noticed Yuuichirou standing in the doorway of the garage.

 

“Did you follow?” Mikaela tilted his head with an amused smile. 

 

Yuuichirou, had in fact, followed Mikaela. He had nearly tripped over his own feet when he rushed down the stairs in his hurry to see the air craft maneuver and in action. Seeing and hearing the humming of the craft and its movements, Yuuichirou was left in awe. Nothing he's ever seen, especially not an air craft, had moved so smoothly up until now- and it wasn't even created by humans!

 

Part of him wanted nothing more than to fiddle with it and touch it, but his attention had been pulled back to Mikaela when he saw him wave to gain his attention.

 

"U-uh… sorry, yeah, I guess I did,” Yuuichirou pursed his lips together. A faint blush bloomed over his cheeks once more because he had been caught staring by Guren, who stood a couple feet away from the garage door. "Shut up, Guren.” He muttered, despite Guren not saying anything.

 

Guren merely rolled his eyes and went to shut the garage.

 

"Anyways… uh... welcome to... the garage?" He tried, gesturing with open arms to their surrounding area.

 

Yuuichirou had absolutely no idea how to speak to or handle Mikaela. At least he was able to understand and speak their language now, though that was because of the kiss… which Yuuichirou still couldn't stop thinking about. An alien had kissed him. That doesn't happen everyday.

 

Mikaela’s eyes curiously examined their surroundings. The room was sharp and angular- a cube instead of a dome, like the typical buildings on ιριδύων. The entire house was similar. 

 

“It’s very boxy,” Mikaela said, then stared at what looked like human tools hanging up on the walls. He stepped over to them and reached up, gently taking one shiny object into his hands. It was incredibly similar to a tool he used at home. Mikaela’s eyes lifted to the other tools.

 

They were not much different, besides the fact they were made of a harder, more metallic material. Mikaela tapped them, expecting something to happen, his nail clicking on the metal. When nothing happened, Mikaela tilted his head.

 

Their tools were much less advanced, then. They didn’t even morph like the ones he had. They were incredibly basic, but Mikaela would be able to use them alongside his own tools that he had stored in his ship. 

 

“I can use these and my tools to fix the house,” Mikaela said, turning around to smile at Yuuichirou. “Just give me some time. I will only need a few orb-ticks.” Mikaela nodded eagerly, but Yuuichirou looked a bit lost. 

 

“Do you not know what an orb-tick is?” Mikaela was baffled, but he then tapped his lip and glanced at the light that leaked into the garage. “What is the star’s name that lights Earth?” Mikaela asked. “Our people called our star an orb before they knew what it was, and measured the sky with a special device. Each chunk of the sky is a tick. The time between the orb resting at one tick to another is one orb-tick. Do you have something like that with Earth and that star?”

 

Yuuichirou brought a hand up to rub at the back of his neck, taking a moment to think. He licked his lips nervously, then nodded once he got the basic gist of what Mikaela meant. "Yeah..." he said slowly. He dropped both hands down and started rubbing his hands together as he tried to think of a way to explain it.

 

"Are you talking about how you measure time?" Yuuichirou questioned, tilting his head a bit. "Ours is divided by seconds, minutes, hours, days, weeks, months, and years; there are sixty seconds in a minute, sixty minutes in an hour, twenty-four hours in a day, seven days in a week, four weeks in a month, twelve months in a year... it takes three hundred-sixty-five days to fully orbit the Sun, our star." He said sheepishly, unsure if that would help Mikaela in any way.

 

“A-Anyways, as long as it's fixed as soon as possible, Guren won't care,” Yuuichirou glanced over at said man retreating back into the house.

 

Yuuichirou already felt incredibly befuddled about the way Mikaela viewed things, but it would prove interesting to learn.

 

Mikaela’s head was spinning with the information given to him. He quickly processed it and began to compare it to his way of measuring time.

 

“So an orb-tick is the same as an… hour, as you said,” Mikaela said, turning and walking closer to Yuuichirou. “That means an orb-spin is like a day, and an orb-cycle is a year.” He though for a moment longer before adding, “we don’t have such a thing as a ‘month’ or a ‘week.’” Mikaela was lost in thought before he snapped back to the task at hand.

 

“Anyways! I will fix the room,” Mikaela said. “Leave it to me!” He turned back to his ship and opened a compartment in the back with a few taps of his fingers along the surface. It opened up smoothly and Mikaela rummaged around, pulling out a pouch and slinging it over his shoulder. 

 

He then turned and dashed outside, then skidded to a halt on the driveway. He looked around quickly, spinning in a small circle before facing Yuuichirou again. 

 

“How do I get back up?” Mikaela asked. “Should I climb the wall? I can, but I might break it more...” 

 

Laughter began to bubble up from Yuuichirou's chest and he had to cover his mouth. He motioned for Mikaela to come back inside the garage and pointed towards the door. “N-No, aha... uhm, we have stairs inside the house for you to get back up…” He giggled out, coughing a bit.

 

Yuuichirou dropped his hand from his mouth as he walked over to him, grabbing Mikaela's wrist and pulling him over towards the door before opening it. He paused when he moved to shut the door, quickly turning around and reaching over to hit the button to close the garage.

 

He was still surprised no one had seen Mikaela crash into his house or run out into the driveway.

 

"Come on, I'll show you around the house later once it's fixed,” he grinned, obviously still amused by Mikaela's earlier question.

 

“Stairs…?” Mikaela allowed himself to be taken inside. When Yuuichirou pressed the button next to the door, the door noisily began to close. It made Mikaela jump slightly. Why was such a simple task so noisy? His eyes followed the mechanics of the garage door. 

 

They were so ancient! He hadn’t seen machinery like that in his entire lifetime. Mikaela’s eyes shimmered with fascination, but he was distracted by Yuuichirou’s words and the interior of the house. 

 

Mikaela cautiously crept inside behind Yuuichirou, eyeing his surroundings. There were odd, bulky things crowded on the floor next to the door that looked like they were supposed to go on feet. He squinted at them, then turned and continued to follow Yuuichirou through a few oddly rectangular corridors. He was then presented with a ramp of sorts, with ridges in between.

 

He realized these must be what Yuuichirou had called ‘stairs’ before. Mikaela crouched down and put his hands on them, leaning and taking a step up when the material beneath him creaked loudly. 

 

Mikaela halted, tail shooting out and bristling. 

 

“Why is it- am I breaking it?” Mikaela asked hesitantly, retracting one hand and nervously leaning away from the stairs. “They’re screaming at me...” 

 

Yuuichirou couldn't hold back the laugh this time, taking a moment to step back and look away from Mikaela. He licked his lips, unable to hide the wide grin that pulled over his lips.

 

"You're not breaking it, and they aren't screaming,” he giggled out, running his fingers through his hair slowly as he brought his gaze back over to Mikaela. "You walk up the stairs. I’m surprised you don't know about these, considering you're so advanced by the looks of your ship."

 

The hand that had been running through his hair dropped to his side as he moved to begin walking up the stairs. "Come on up, nothing here bites,” he promised. Yuuichirou extended a hand outwards for Mikaela to take.

 

"If you have any questions, don't be afraid to ask, either."

 

Guren coughed behind them and Yuuichirou jumped, causing the boy to look up at his guardian. Yuuichirou's face reddened slightly before he looked away and grabbed Mikaela's hand to pull him up the stairs.

 

"And don't mind Guren, he's a grumpy old man."

 

Mikaela wondered why Yuuichirou’s face changed color again, but he figured he could ask about that later. He had a debt to repay by fixing their home. Mikaela walked cautiously up the stairs, tail swishing from side to side anxiously. Yuuichirou was rushing up them so quickly, pulling his arm along, but Mikaela was baffled by them.

 

Why were there so many tiny ridges? At his home, there was either a ramp without any bumps, or there were large, far-apart steps. φωτεινός were strong and able to leap up from ledge to ledge. They did not need such tiny steps in between, and because of that, Mikaela was unsure how to use them.

 

Plus, they creaked so loudly! It felt like they were close to collapsing. Mikaela was nervous, but he quickly scrambled after Yuuichirou. Maybe he could fix those while he was here, too. 

 

He turned into the damaged room, examining the chunks of wall that were within the room. Some had fallen outside, but he decided he could extract those later.

 

He noticed some more metallic material that must have been the remains of the structure that he damaged. He would be able to use that… 

 

“Okay, I will get to work!” Mikaela announced excitedly, then stepped over and began gathering the ruins in his arms. They were easy for him to carry, but he didn’t know that what he was holding was actually incredibly heavy for humans. Because of this, Yuuichirou was staring at him with shock.

 

Yuuichirou simply brought his hand up to his mouth. He closed his eyes with his eyes brows raised and his lips pursed, then shook his head in a slow manner. "Nope, nothing, not questioning it,” Yuuichirou murmured to himself. Of course Mikaela would have super human strength.

 

“Is something the matter?” Mikaela asked casually, tilting his head in question. His tail curved upwards, comically curling into the shape of a question mark. 

 

"Nothing is wrong, it's okay,” Yuuichirou smiled reassuringly. He dropped his hand down while moving his body towards the papers that had gone flying. A disappointed frown formed over his lips when he saw that his food had been sent flying as well. There went his lunch; at least the plate itself wasn't broken. Guren would have a bigger fit than he probably already had.

 

He smiled a bit as he thought about Guren being eager to call Goshi and complain about what had just happened but not being able to.

 

"I'll clean up over here and get myself something to eat, hopefully my bed isn't broken…” he sighed wistfully. Even if his bed post was broken, he could just place the mattress on the floor. There wasn't a big deal about that, it just meant more work for him.

 

Mikaela turned back to the ruins, quickly getting to work. He was aware of Yuuichirou’s presence. He knew he was being watched as he fixed things, but he didn’t expect anything else. He was sure the humans were just as curious about other life as Mikaela was about them.

 

As Mikaela built up his wall again, he thought that his roof was a bit mediocre. It was a solid wall, considering the remains that Mikaela was handling and examining. That was too bland. He couldn’t remove his roof and see the sky.

 

Mikaela decided to install the feature into Yuuichirou’s room with his own materials, technology and knowledge. He knew that not all of the elements on Earth were the same, but he was able to work with them quite well. 

 

He wasn’t sure how quickly an ‘hour’ passed on Earth. He had only just arrived, so he wasn’t quite used to how time worked, but he noticed their star, the Sun, beginning to dip low on the horizon. Luckily, he was just about finished. He added his finishing touches, then tested the retractable roof he installed. It worked smoothly and perfectly, and Mikaela’s tail twitched happily. 

 

Yuuichirou had eventually sat down at his desk once his books and room were picked back up. He was currently jotting things down in his notebook again, munching on a Twix bar, and leaning his chair back so he was balanced on the back legs. He carefully rocked back and forth as he wrote, adding even sloppier kanji to the notebook pressed against his knee. As long as Yuuichirou could read it, he didn't really care.

 

Feeling a draft suddenly, Yuuichirou dropped his chair back onto the floor and stood up to turn around towards Mikaela. He dropped both his candy bar and notebook as he stared at the gap in his roof.

 

"I thought you said you were going to fix it?!" He nearly shrieked, rushing over towards Mikaela and grabbing onto his shoulders. "Please tell me it closes, I don't need rain getting everything in here wet or more aliens possibly seeing me!” He whined a bit, shaking Mikaela slightly.

 

“It’s retractable!” Mikaela said proudly, even after being shaken suddenly. He held up a small handheld device. It had a few buttons that Yuuichirou could press to control its movements. “Watch this…” Mikaela clicked the button and the roof slid on. 

 

“I wanted to install a window, but I lacked the proper materials,” Mikaela sighed. “So instead, I decided a retractable roof would work best. That way, you can see the sky anytime!” 

 

Mikaela was unknowing of Yuuichirou’s deep love and passion of space. He did this simply because he felt Yuuichirou’s room was outdated, and it wasn’t too much trouble for him to build such a structure. He put his hands on his hips proudly. 

 

“See? Isn’t it amazing?” Mikaela pressed, eagerly awaiting praise from Yuuichirou. He was excited at the prospect of impressing the first human he’s ever met.

 

The boy paused as he looked up at Mikaela's addition to his room. He seemed to be in deep thought before he looked down at the telescope sitting in the far corner of his room.

 

"I don't have to go outside to look at the stars…” Yuuichirou whispered breathlessly before snapping his attention back to Mikaela. He grinned at him suddenly.

 

"I love it!" Yuuichirou exclaimed, letting go of his shoulders and instead taking the remote in his hand. He pressed it so that the roof opened again, then moved towards the opening in his roof.

 

"I could even climb up here now..." He murmured, standing on his bed with his hands on the edge of the opening. "I could just lay here and... " He started bouncing a bit on his bed that was currently on the floor due to his bedpost being broken.

 

Yuuichirou turned his head towards Mikaela and smiled wide. "Thank you!"

 

Mikaela noticed Yuuichirou’s excitement and genuine smiles. He knew if Yuuichirou had a tail, it’d be swishing from side to side with joy. The thought made warmth bubble in Mikaela’s chest and he smiled. 

 

“I’m glad you like it,” Mikaela said, then followed Yuuichirou’s eyes up to the sky. 

 

The stars were all different here. He wondered if any of them were his star, σφαίρα. Millions of questions danced in the back of his head, but he knew there would be time to ask about everything he wanted to know. 

 

An excited smile spread across Mikaela’s face. 

 

He made it to another planet thriving with life. He finally did what he wholeheartedly believed that φωτεινός were born to do- explore. 

 

Anticipation made his heart flutter with the realization that his exploring had only just begun.

Chapter Text

Yuuichirou didn't find sleeping all too bad, despite his mattress being on the floor. There was a lot less creaking when he moved about, and surprisingly, he slept way better. He had half a mind to keep the mattress on the floor. Guren, however, would probably end up buying him a new one regardless.

 

What he didn't expect was waking up and having Mikaela's face so close to his own.

 

Yuuichirou's heart nearly leapt out of his throat. Instead of even staying and reacting properly to the situation, Yuuichirou shoved himself up and jumped over Mikaela before darting into the bathroom. He quickly shut the door.

 

The cold wood of the door pressed beneath his hands. He stood there for the longest moment before it registered that they had taken in an alien yesterday, and he still wasn't used to it. 

 

"Fuck…” He murmured under his breath.

 

With his tongue darting over his lips to wet them, he shifted over towards the sink to grab his toothbrush. He made quick work of completing the task of cleaning his teeth. The mindless scrubbing helped to calm him down while he stared at his sleep deprived reflection in the mirror. He denied himself sleep quite often due to the amount of work given to him in school and the fact that he studied space on his own for the majority of the night.

 

Thankfully, the bags under his eyes seemed to be getting better and weren't as dark as they used to be.

 

He cupped his hands underneath the running water pouring from the sink, then gathered enough before bending over and bringing it to his lips, sipping just enough water from his palms to swish it around his mouth. He grabbed a towel and dried his hands as he continued to swish for a good minute, then spat it out into the sink. He rinsed out the sink, then stood back up once the water had been shut off.

 

"This'll be quite a day…” He murmured to his reflection before shutting the light off. Guren usually kept the bathroom light on at night so his groggy ass knew where to go when he needed to pee.

 

Yuuichirou soon returned back to his room and peeked in.

 

"Mika..." He called.

 

He still briefly wondered why Mikaela was even in his bed in the first place.

 

Mikaela had woken up easily. He sat up, tail flicking from side to side as he smiled. 

 

“Good morning, Yuu-i-chi-rou,” Mikaela said choppily. He was able to speak their language quite well just from his natural ability, but it wasn’t a perfect feature. It was evolved, but likely still evolving. Due to this, his speech was not perfected, so he had a difficult time sounding out certain things, like Yuuichirou’s entire name. He noticed that Guren called him ‘Yuu,’ but he wasn’t sure about human customs yet, or if it was alright for him to call him the same name. 

 

Yuuichirou was a little surprised that Mikaela wasn't already awake considering the way Yuuichirou had freaked out earlier and practically bolted out of the room. He decided not to question it.

 

"Ah... you can call me Yuu." He smiled slightly. With a slight push off the door, Yuuichirou made his way over towards his closet, opening up the doors and pursing his lips as he took a moment to decide what to wear before it dawned on him that Mikaela was still wearing that ridiculously skin tight suit. Mikaela would stick out a lot with such attire on.

 

“Your nights are really short on Earth,” Mikaela said, unaware of Yuuichirou’s thoughts. He glanced at the window where sunlight began to peek through the blinds. “And why do you have things covering the windows? Do they not darken for you?” On ιριδύων, their windows darkened with just a tap to the glass. It wasn’t like they needed to be darkened often, however; their nights were long like their orb-cycles, or ‘years’ as they are called on Earth.

 

“And Earth only has one μάτια…” Mikaela murmured, slipping back into his natural tongue before realizing what he said. “Ah, sorry, I mean… the big round Eye in the sky at night,” Mikaela struggled to explain. “We call them μάτιαs. We have four, but Earth only has one.” 

 

"Mikaela, come here,” Yuuichirou motioned, pulling out a sweater since it was cold outside. He didn't know what temperatures Mikaela could tolerate, but just in case it was too cold, he wanted to make sure Mikaela had on a sweater. "You'll have to change out of that if you want to venture outside with me later." Yuuichirou explained, casting him a look.

 

It was so odd to him, having an alien in his home. Yuuichirou wanted to touch his face and stuff, just to be sure Mikaela was an actual alien and not some weird otaku cosplayer.

 

Mikaela’s tail dropped with disappointment. Yuuichirou had totally ignored his questions about the windows and the singular μάτια in the sky at night. He didn’t know Yuuichirou was distracted with his own thoughts- but whatever the reason, he stubbornly looked away from the clothing in Yuuichirou’s hands.

 

Sure, it looked soft and warm, but it wasn’t like he wanted to take off his suit in order to wear the clothing they had on Earth. It didn’t look nearly as appealing as his specialized suit.

 

“I don’t want to wear it,” Mikaela said childishly. “It’ll be fine with this. It’s thermo-regulated for me, so I’m completely comfortable in it.” He crossed his arms and stared out the window again. Maybe he could find out about the μάτια on his own. He noticed that it was fainter in the daytime- a soft white, versus the bright and glowing white at night.

 

It must take in the light from the Sun and glow at night. In that way, it really was very similar to one of their μάτιαs called πίστη. πίστη was always glowing throughout the long, dark nights- everlasting and permanent, true to its name, which meant ‘Faith.’

 

The human boy frowned, watching Mikaela stare out the window for a long moment. He hadn't intentionally ignored Mikaela; the questions didn't really register in Yuuichirou's thoughts to begin with. Sometimes, Yuuichirou really wasn't good at listening when people were talking.

 

"Look, if you want to roam around and get to learn about us and our ecosystems and such, you need to wear these,” Yuuichirou explained. "Otherwise, you're going to be left here alone because I need to go to school and I really don't need FBI agents or the Men in Black on my ass." He huffed out, tossing the sweater and jeans at Mikaela. He paused for another moment before grabbing a pair of boxers he never really wears and tossing them to the blonde.

 

"Put those on before the pants, too." He instructed.

 

Afterwards, Yuuichirou turned back to the closet to grab his own clothing before heading back into the bathroom where he took the time to shower and get ready properly.

 

Mikaela glared at the clothing. He let it fall in front of him rather than catching it. He then glared up Yuuichirou’s retreating form as he left the room. 

 

Yuu may be cute, but he isn’t being very nice, Mikaela thought as he turned his nose away from the clothes. For a long time, he ignored them, refusing to do as much as look at them. 

 

After a while, he sighed and looked back at it. He was at least curious enough to inspect the things. The first article of clothing was soft and stretchy, colored a sandy tan. He looked to the thing that was meant for legs. He believed Yuuichirou called them ‘pants.’ He touched the pants and scrunched his nose- they were rough, stiff, and dark blue. He then looked to the last thing that Yuuichirou tossed at him, which was intended for the hips, though thinner and apparently worn underneath pants.

 

It was soft and also stretchy, colored plain black. Mikaela squinted at them, then dropped everything and huffed. 

 

He couldn’t stop thinking about Earth’s μάτια! He wanted to know what it was already. When Yuuichirou got back to the room, his tail perked up happily. Maybe Yuuichirou would hear him now. 

 

“Hey, what’s the μάτια called here-“ Mikaela started to ask, a big grin on his face, but something started making a lot of noise in Yuuichirou’s hand. His eyes darted to it and he cut himself off, but then his tail drooped again as Yuuichirou lifted it to his ear and left the room again. 

 

It was some sort of communication device, it seemed. Mikaela sighed obnoxiously and fell back onto the bed, stubbornly staring at the ceiling and waiting for Yuuichirou to return again. 

 

Yuuichirou had heard the beginning of Mikaela's question, but he had gotten a call. He wasn't one to just leave people unanswered if they called him (he usually only did that through texts). Mitsuba’s voice came through the phone when he answered.

 

"Yuu!" She breathed out a sigh of relief. "Do you think I could borrow a few of your books for science today? I left all of mine at home and I'm literally already standing in front of my class right now."

 

"Wha-..." Yuuichirou hesitated, remembering the amount of notes he had written in those books. "Can't you just borrow them from Shinoa or someone else?" He questioned, earning an annoyed groan from the blonde on the other end.

 

"No, they've all got sticks up their asses and Shinoa needs hers because she's behind two days on work."

 

"Well, that's unfortunate..." He squinted a bit at the wall in front of him where he was standing in the hallway. He knew Mitsuba just didn't want to go around asking people to borrow their books, considering how socially awkward she could get. "Augh, alright, when do you need them?" He asked, rubbing at his face with his free hand.

 

"Er... around two, I don't need them right now because I'm in physiology,” she explained.

 

"Gotcha, I'll bring them over, just don't mind all the sticky notes and shit in them." He promised. She gave a quick thanks before hanging up. Lips pursed, he slipped his phone into his pocket before heading into his room.

 

Yuuichirou frowned when he saw Mikaela still not dressed. "Sorry, I had to take that, but you need to get dressed." He sighed out, stepping over to him. "What were you about to ask me earlier?"

 

While Yuuichirou was talking, Mikaela found the remote that opened the retractable roof and opened it up. He was staring at the sky when Yuuichirou came back. 

 

“That,” Mikaela said shortly, pointing directly at the μάτια in the sky. “What do you call it? And why is there only one?” Mikaela dropped his hand. The tip of his tail flicked with irritation, since this was his third time asking. “I’ll put on the clothes if you tell me,” he added with a bit of a pout. 

 

An amused smile pulled over Yuuichirou's face, looking up to where Mikaela was pointing. "The moon?" He asked. "We call that a moon, and I'm not too sure why we only have one. Jupiter has sixty-seven moons…” Yuuichirou breathed out. He knew almost every single one of them, too. A dazed expression formed as he continued to stare up at the sky in wonder.

 

He quickly pulled himself out of his daze before looking over at Mikaela. "Though for Jupiter, there are only four main ones… some may be able to support life, though we have really only found life on Pluto, which consisted of a small amount of shrimp because that planet is mostly ice." He explained. 

 

Mikaela listened happily as Yuuichirou talked about the other nearby planets. It seemed that Earth was similar to his planet, ιριδύων, in that it was the only planet with intelligent life in its solar system. 

 

Yuuichirou realized that he was probably talking a bit too much and telling Mikaela more than what he originally wanted to know.

 

"A-ah, sorry but… yeah, we're not sure why we only have one, but it's probably a good thing because it helps our satellites and creates gravitational tides for our waters."

 

“A moon…” Mikaela’s eyes sparkled as he looked up at the moon’s faded appearance.  “We call our moons μάτιαs, which means ‘Eyes.’ Each one has a special name.” Mikaela looked back to Yuuichirou. “Is there a name for this moon?”

 

“No, it’s just called the moon,” Yuuichirou said. “Not sure why…” Mikaela hummed, shrugging and sighing.

 

“I want to go to these other planets…” Mikaela mused. But before he got too distracted, he perked up and looked at the clothes. “Alright, I’ll wear them.” He stood up and unzipped the back of his uniform, then began shrugging it off of his shoulders casually. 

 

“Humans haven’t traveled to them just yet, but— woah, hey!" Yuuichirou squeaked when he looked back over at Mikaela, seeing the alien nearly half naked at this point. "Can't you wait until I'm out of the room or turned around?" He hissed out, the blush coming back full force as he tried not to wonder what was possibly beneath Mikaela's suit. It was odd enough that Mikaela was a completely different species.

 

Yuuichirou turned his head away, bringing his hands up to his face in an attempt to calm himself down. Honestly, he wouldn't be so worked up if Mikaela hadn't kissed him before, but Mikaela kept insisting that it had been necessary and seemed deeply confused as to why that caused such a fuss.

 

"Hurry up and get dressed,” Yuuichirou sighed out, running his fingers through his drying hair. "If you need help putting those on, just ask."

 

Mikaela froze when Yuuichirou freaked out at him, confused by his embarrassment. When his face turned pink again, Mikaela stopped and stared. 

 

“That,” Mikaela pointed. His suit was half off, revealing his torso and hanging on tightly to his hips, but he didn’t mind. He wanted to ask what that was about. When Yuuichirou turned back to him, Mikaela came close enough for their noses to almost touch. 

 

“What is that?” Mikaela pointed at his cheeks. “Why is it pink? Are humans also able to change their skin based off of mood? Can you go any other colors besides pink or…” Mikaela watched as his cheeks darkened. “Whoa… I guess, red as well?” He smiled with his tail wagging from side to side. “Wow, humans are so interesting...”

 

Yuuichirou frowned as his face continued to darken more, since his blush and embarrassment was pointed out by the one standing in front of him.

 

"It's a natural emotional reaction to when a human becomes embarrassed,” Yuuichirou sighed out, bringing his hands up to try and cool his face down. "The blood rushes up when either adrenaline or certain emotions arise; concentrating on something too hard or straining ourselves can cause it as well." He briefly closed his eyes as the heat began to disappear from his face.

 

"I guess you could say I blushed because I just became alert suddenly, and it caused me to become shy due to me not being used to having people undress in front of me,” Yuuichirou suddenly yawned, realizing he didn't sleep enough. "To an extent, we can become red in the face, yes."

 

“Ohhh…” Mikaela blinked a few times as he processed the information given to him. “My species does that a little bit, but we mostly glow. Our skin can change due to our mood or our will to blend in to our environment.”

 

Mikaela backed away from Yuuichirou once he noticed the pink fading away from his face. His tail swished, then he looked down to his suit hanging off of his hips. “Oh, I should continue-“ Mikaela paused as he gripped the edge of it. “Undressing makes humans embarrassed, right? Why is that?” Mikaela’s eyes flickered with realization and he glowed slightly, his tail bristling. 

 

“Oh, is it because of an urge to mate?” Mikaela suddenly asked, his heart beating quickly with his own embarrassment.

 

If Yuuichirou were drinking something, he would've done an immediate spittake. His entire expression blanched and he quickly shook his head. 

 

"No,” Yuuichirou said in a firm tone, bringing a hand up to his chest to calm himself. He didn't expect to be having a conversation regarding sex with an alien. “Goodness fuck, no- It really only caught me off guard, but mating isn't ever on my mind, honestly." He dropped his hand down to his side again. “I guess… it’s not uncommon for humans to  be embarrassed about having sex- well… mating, I guess. Some humans do it for fun."

 

It wasn’t usual for φωτεινός to fall in love or have romantic endeavors, but mating wasn’t uncommon. Mikaela knew that nudity, even in his own culture, stirred up an instinctive desire to mate. It must be similar for humans if Yuuichirou got so flustered by undressing and nudity. 

 

Mikaela only got embarrassed at the thought of Yuuichirou wanting to mate with him, but he wouldn’t jump to conclusions just from that one moment.

 

Yuuichirou shrugged and turned away from Mikaela to head over to his desk, grabbing his books. He glanced back over at Mikaela and how much more brightly he seemed to be glowing.

 

Mikaela seemed to be bioluminescent, and it intrigued Yuuichirou to a point. He didn't think Mikaela could glow during the day, however. "Huh…” he murmured, bringing the books up to his chest before he shook his head and moved to grab his book bag to put them in.

 

Yuuichirou was definitely fascinated in Mikaela's appearance, but he was more fascinated by what possible planet and star system Mikaela came from.

 

Mikaela shuffled about, clothes in hand. When he figured Yuuichirou was turned away for long enough, he removed the rest of his suit, then picked up the undergarment that Yuuichirou handed him before. It wasn’t difficult; he got it on easily, fidgeted at the feeling, then looked at the pants. 

 

He inspected the button, removed it, and then unzipped the zipper. After that, he stuck his legs in and pulled it up to his hips, where he assumed he had to button and zip again.

 

Once the pants were secure, Mikaela stepped about. They were scratchy and weird; he wasn’t sure he liked them at all. He held the shirt, then wondered what to do with his tail. With a sigh, he wrapped his tail around his torso, then held the shirt out and shoved his head inside.

 

He flailed his arms about, wondering why human garments were so complicated, but ended up with the entire shirt backwards, one arm shoved through the neck hole and the other clasped confusedly inside the shirt.

 

“I’m stuck,” Mikaela announced, glancing sadly at Yuuichirou. 

 

When Yuuichirou turned around, he snorted. He didn't think putting on the shirt would be too complicated for Mikaela, but it seemed he was proven wrong. He placed his bag down on his desk before walking over and slipping his hands beneath the shirt, not thinking too much about how Mikaela's tail felt against his hand, and helped Mikaela put it on the right way.

 

"For someone more advanced than us, you're pretty goofy,” Yuuichirou murmured in an amused tone. He stepped back and grabbed the sweater before slipping it over Mikaela's head and helping him put his arms through.

 

"If it gets too hot, you can just take the sweater off, I'm not really sure if you work like amphibians when it comes to body temperature but... mm…” Yuuichirou pursed his lips together before shaking his head. "If you're too hot or cold, please tell me and I'll help you out. For now, you need socks and shoes."

 

With a step back, Yuuichirou turned to quickly dart over to his dresser and open one of the drawers up, shuffling around it before he pulled out a pair of black socks. He turned and tossed them over to Mikaela.

 

"Put those on."

 

Mikaela was able to get the socks on without much trouble. They weren’t too complicated to figure out. 

 

“Our clothes fit differently,” Mikaela defended, “and they aren’t so… weird to get on. Human clothes aren’t fitted as much as ours are. They feel so loose.” Mikaela straightened up and watched Yuuichirou get his things together. 

 

“There are tight fitting clothes but I prefer loose fitting, as it's more comfortable for me to lounge in when I study,” Yuuichirou cleared up. 

 

“Do I have to change skin color to match yours?” Mikaela asked and tilted his head. “It takes me some time to do so, and its easier for me to be touching you so I can change that color.” His tail twitched under his shirt, but he stilled it. It was going to be difficult to control his tail while he was in front of other humans who assumed he was a human as well. 

 

Yuuichirou paused and looked at him, eyebrows furrowing. "Yeah, or a lighter skin tone than mine but, you'll probably have to go with mine. Uhm..." He licked his lips nervously before walking over to him. He reached out his hand. "Here, we've got a few more minutes to spare-" Yuuichirou glanced up at the blue tip of Mikaela’s ear peeking out from his hair.

 

Of course, Yuuichirou thought with a frown. There was no way of hiding those unless Mikaela wore a hat.

 

"... You'll… have to make sure no one sees those, either,’ Yuuichirou said. Mikaela looked at him blankly. “Your ears, I mean…” Yuuichirou smiled a bit and reached up to move Mikaela's hair out of the way so he could see them. They were cute, but he realized it was probably weird to stare.

 

"Ah- yeah just, go ahead and do what you need to,” Yuuichirou breathed out.

 

Mikaela nodded and placed his hand gently on Yuuichirou’s wrist. He was much warmer than Mikaela. Mikaela wasn’t ice cold, per say, but his natural body temperature was probably much lower than the average human’s. 

 

Mikaela watched as Yuuichirou’s skin color bled down his fingers and hand, slowly spreading and turning his blue to tan. It would take some time, but once Mikaela knew the color of Yuuichirou’s skin, his own brain would remember and be able to change his color quickly and at anytime, anywhere. 

 

Once it was finished, Mikaela removed his hand and smiled up at Yuuichioru. “Do I look human now?” His tail wiggled again, but he tensed it again. “I’ll do my best to blend in with this culture!”

 

He then had a sudden thought. “Do the humans have sub-cultures, or are they all uniform? Foteinós are different depending on the region they live in… I’m assuming humans aren’t all exactly the same, but I’m still wondering...” 

 

"We have many different cultures,” Yuuichirou smiled at him. "And many different languages here; going to different countries is sometimes difficult because of that."

 

He giggled a bit after explaining and nodded towards Mikaela. “And yes, you look human,” he assured before grabbing his bag from his chair and slipping it over his shoulder. "Come on, we have to get going, I have to give a friend some things before we can do anything else."

 

Yuuichirou headed over towards the door, opened it up for Mikaela to go through first, and then walked through and shut the door behind him.

 

"Guren!" He called. "We're heading out, I've gotta drop some things off and then pick up some school work I never got yesterday."

 

Guren immediately popped his head out of his room and squinted over at the both of them. "If he gets caught,” he said, pointing at Mikaela, “I’m not involved in this. I refuse to be arrested by the FBI."

 

Yuuichirou rolled his eyes. "Yeah, whatever, Guren." He reached behind him and grabbed Mikaela's wrist, pulling him along and down the stairs before Guren could say anything else.

 

Mikaela followed along, trying to observe as much as he could as he was pulled out the door. He stared at the human machines driving down the pathways along where they walked.

 

It wasn’t difficult to figure out, but Mikaela watched with keen fascination as the humans driving by worked the controls and steered their vehicles around. It wasn’t terribly complicated, but it appeared so basic compared to what Mikaela was capable of making.

 

This was the kind of technology that he only heard the eldest talk about. He felt like he went back in time, walking by things that only moved on the ground.

 

His eyes widened as he watched the scenery, staring at the odd Earth plants. Most things were green. Some of the plants had similar structure to the ones on ιριδύων, but there were certainly unique things that Mikaela had never seen before. He wanted to ask a million questions, but he simply watched for now as they walked, entranced at the sight of Earth and its life. 

 

And not to mention all of the humans! There were so many walking past him. He hoped he didn’t stare too long at some of them, but to be fair, they were staring at him a lot.

 

“Do they know?” Mikaela asked self consciously. “They keep staring at me…” He did notice how most people had darker hair, and he wondered if his blonde hair was unusual, at least in this region. 

 

Yuuichirou looked back at Mikaela because of the comment, his lips pursing before he realized why the people were staring. A small smile began to tug on his lips. 

 

"They can tell you're a foreigner, that's all,” he assured. "You landed in Japan, and most Japanese have darker hair colors. Even coloring your hair is odd here, but not uncommon. It just makes it easier for you to stand out, like my friends."

 

Yuuichirou had Mikaela stop at the intersection, making sure he wouldn't just waltz right into traffic. "Once you see them, maybe you'll feel better about it,” Yuuichirou threw another smile at him.

 

Once the signal changed for them to walk across, Yuuichirou tugged Mikaela's arm gently for him to follow. He never cared to glance over at the people within the cars, too busy with trying to get to his destination. He only had Guren's car and not his own, but thankfully the college campus wasn't too far away, hence why he still stayed at home.

 

"Also, be careful around cars, some people can be real idiots,” Yuuichirou added.

 

Mikaela followed along, watching as the machines- Yuuichirou had called them ‘cars’- turned around corners and zipped along roads inside of perfectly marked lines. Their lights blinked when they turned and lit up when they stopped. It was all convenient, albeit basic to Mikaela.

 

He smiled and trotted along. “Are there places on Earth where my color hair is more normal?” Mikaela asked curiously. “There are others on my planet with naturally purple hair, pink hair, and much more… is that common here, too?” He glanced at people walking by, noticing how their hair was usually dark browns, reds, or black. The older ones had gray and white hair.

 

It was all so fascinating to him. Why did they all look so similar? It wasn’t a bad thing, but simply unusual to Mikaela for them all to blend so well. 

 

"Mm, no,” Yuuicirous shook his head. "Our natural colors are brown, black, blonde, and red… orangish." He debated on pulling out a map and showing where most were more common than others.

 

"Blonde people are more found in Russia and Europe, including the Finnish and such, and even America, but America has everyone kinda mixed in,” Yuuichirou tried to explain. “It’s multi-cultural there, or at least, that country tries to be." He smiled a bit and shrugged.

 

He glanced over at him and watched Mikaela look around in wonder, how he seemed intrigued in the simplest of things, despite everything being outdated to him.

 

“Wow… I want to visit the other human regions some day,” Mikaela said, “especially the America you speak of. I could see many different humans that way.” He would have wagged his tail, but it was snugly wrapped around his torso underneath his loose sweater. This way, no one could see the bumps it created.

 

Yuuichirou eventually turned and headed towards a specific set of buildings, which Mikaela assumed was the college that he kept mentioning. From the context of Yuuichirou’s books and the way he used the word ‘college,’ Mikaela assumed it was a place of academic learning.

 

They had that on ιριδύων as well. Mikaela was interested to see what topics humans learned about and what their methods of teaching were like.

 

“Oh?”

 

An unfamiliar voice spoke from off to the side. Mikaela turned to the source. His eyes widened at the sight of a small, female human with lilac colored hair tied back in a bow.

 

“Y-You said humans don’t have colored hair?” Mikaela stammered with confusion. Yuuichirou had mentioned that humans colored their hair sometimes, but he didn’t expect it to look so natural.

 

“What an odd word to use,” the girl said with a coy smile. “Hey, Yuu-san, who is this guy? He looks like he’s from out of town.” She winked, making Mikaela tense with confusion. He wondered if he was supposed to keep the fact that he was an alien to Earth a secret or not.

 

Yuuichirou tensed and looked over his shoulder at Shinoa. He mentally cursed when Mikaela used the word 'human' in such a manner. He turned around quickly and stepped closer towards the both of them, bringing a hand up and grabbing onto the blonde’s arm again.

 

"He's foreign, transferred from Moscow and still learning Japanese,” Yuuichirou said easily without flinching. "This is Shinoa; Shinoa, this is Mikaela." He introduced them before glancing back at the building. "Do you know where Mitsuba is?" He asked, hoping to pull Shinoa's attention away from Mikaela.

 

"Or, better yet, would you be kind enough to take these books to her?" He pleaded, slipping his book bag off his shoulders and unzipping it to pull out the books from it. He handed them towards her.

 

"If not, that's fine, you're kinda mean and snooty anyways,” he teased.

 

“Eh… I’m not mean,” Shinoa huffed. “You’re just an airhead, Yuu-san. Anyways!” She smiled towards Mikaela. “Nice to meet you, Mika-san,” Shinoa held out her hand. 

 

Mikaela stared at it, and remembering how Yuuichirou had done the same thing, he smiled and grasped her hand between his and squeezed. She looked surprised at the gesture.

 

“Oh, I guess Russians don’t do handshakes,” she giggled. “Where did you get a Russian foreigner anyways, Yuu-san?”

 

“Wait,” Mikaela stopped them, curiosity making his tail twitch under his sweater. Luckily, no one noticed. He dropped Shinoa’s hand. “Why did you call me Mika san?“ 

 

“You don’t know suffixes?” Shinoa hummed. “Well, it’s sort of a sign of respect. You can call me Shinoa-chan!” She giggled.

 

“Chan?” Mikaela asked.

 

“You use -chan because I’m cute,” Shinoa informed him. Mikaela stared at her, then smiled brightly and turned to Yuuichirou. 

 

“Then I should call you Yuu-chan, because you’re cute!” Mikaela said loudly, which caused someone else to bust out laughing. When Mikaela turned to the voice, he saw someone tall and with pink hair walking towards them. 

 

“Oh wow, so idiot Yuu’s got a boyfriend now?” The pink haired man taunted.

 

Yuuichirou's entire face became a flame of embarrassment. "No! We do not call me ‘Yuu-chan!’” He hissed as he looked back at Kimizuki. "And I do not have a boyfriend!”

 

"Awe, and you two would've made such a great couple,” Shinoa pouted over at him mockingly, furthering Yuuichirou's embarrassment. Yuuichirou closed his eyes and tried his best to fight down the need to cover his face. He had no idea how this even escalated so quickly.

 

"Anyways, Mika is part of an exchange program and I'm his host family for a while while he's over here,” he explained, rubbing at his temples.

 

He could already feel a headache coming on. Shinoa quirked a brow at him and glanced over at Mikaela, who was staring at Yuuichirou in slight confusion.

 

"Look, just let me take these books to Mitsuba and I'll deal with you two later, I need to be drunk to deal with Kimizuki."

 

“Oi, what’s that supposed to mean?” Kimizuki huffed, crossing his arms over his chest. 

 

“Ah, look, there’s Miichan now!” Shinoa said, then raised her arm and waved it around. A blonde girl with pigtails came over to them.

 

“Thank you so much,” the girl who Mikaela assumed was Mitsuba said. She took the books from Yuuichirou’s hands. “I’ll get them back to you as soon as I can.” Her dark bluish eyes flickered to Mikaela. “Who’s that?”

 

“Mika-san here is a foreigner,” Shinoa gestured to Mikaela, who watched her curiously before looking back at Mitsuba. “He’s Yuu-san’s boyfriend.”

 

“Boyfriend?” Mikaela tilted his head questioningly before Yuuichirou interrupted them loudly. 

 

"I told you, he's not my boyfriend!" Yuuichirou nearly screeched out, shoulders tensing up a bit before a took a moment to calm down. He didn’t know how much embarrassment he could take as he rubbed at his face. He took a deep breath in and clapped his hands together with a smile directed towards Mitsuba.

 

"You're welcome, use them how ever long you need, but don't forget you have them because they're very important for my studies,” Yuuichirou said, only to flinch at Kimizuki's snort.

 

"You and space, I really don't get why it intrigues you so much,” Kimizuki murmured, earning a glare from Yuuichirou.

 

"And this is why you suck at science!" Yuuichirou declared. "Stick to math and English, you bean pole." He huffed out, obviously offended. He wanted to pout but he wouldn't allow himself.

 

Mikaela silently wondered how someone could not be interested in space. He fixed Kimizuki with a somewhat calculating look, but he looked away when Kimizuki noticed his staring. 

 

“Well, I’m off to class,” Shinoa waved. “It was nice meeting you, Mika-san.”

 

“You too, Shin-oa-chan,” Mikaela tried to say. She grinned happily, held up two fingers, then left.

 

“What does this mean?” Mikaela turned to the others and held up the same two fingers.

 

“It’s a ‘V’ for ‘victory,’” Mitsuba explained. Mikaela stared at his hand, wondering what a ‘V’ even was, but he tried not to ask anything else in fear that even Russians would know what a ‘V’ is.

 

“Where’s Yoichi at, anyways?” Mitsuba asked, glancing at Kimizuki. 

 

“Class,” Kimizuki said, “which I should be off to myself. I just stopped to ask about him.” Kimizuki tilted his head towards Mikaela. 

 

“What should I call you?” Mikaela asked carefully. Kimizuki raised an eyebrow at him. 

 

“Uh… just Kimizuki is fine,” he said.

 

“Got it,” Mikaela said to himself, nodding quickly. Kimizuki gave him an odd look before adjusting his glasses.

 

“Well, see you idiots later,” he said, then walked off, leaving Mitsuba, Yuuichirou and Mikaela alone. 

 

Yuuichirou breathed out a sigh of relief, closing his eyes and pursing his lips together. When he opened them back up, he shifted and zipped his bag up to shoulder it. He had many more books in his bag that just barely seemed to hold it; it was quite heavy.

 

"Like I said before, just ignore the writing and stuff I have in there. It gets confusing if you try to go based off half the notes I make,” Yuuichirou explained with an apologetic smile.

 

"That's fine, Yuu,” Mitsuba assured, holding the books to her chest. "And... it was nice meeting you, ... Mika?" She said in an inquiring tone just to make sure she said his name right. When he nodded, she smiled and nodded back.

 

"Right, I'll see you after class,” she said with a small wave before turning and hurrying back down the side walk.

 

Yuuichirou rubbed the back of his head and yawned. "Speaking of, I need to head to class myself... I can sneak you in easily for now."

 

Mikaela’s eyes sparkled with excitement. He would be able to see a human school and their teaching methods right up close and personal!

 

Mikaela nodded eagerly, then followed Yuuichirou with a big grin on his face.

Chapter Text

It was a long, long day for Mikaela to process and handle. He followed Yuuichirou around, bursting with questions, but he held himself back in order to let Yuuichirou do his work and focus on what was important.

 

He found the teaching interesting, to say the least. He was thrust right into the middle of a very complicated astrophysics course, but Mikaela focused and was able to understand the human pattern of thinking. It wasn’t much different than the φωτεινός way of thinking, interestingly enough. 

 

Somehow, Yuuichirou had acquired the right papers to enlist Mikaela in their university. He seemed stressed and nervous about it as he lied about where Mikaela was from. Mikaela watched him fill out the forums, wishing he could help, but he knew none of his answers would be helpful.

 

“Ah, I’m actually 5 orb-cycles old,” Mikaela said softly, and when Yuuichirou gave him a bewildered look, Mikaela smiled nervously. “Uh… I guess an orb-cycle is actually much longer than a year, then…? You wrote down that I was 20 Earth-years old…”

 

Yuuichirou squinted at him further and nodded slowly. “I’m 19, you're probably around 20 Earth years, Mika." He pursed his lips together, trying not to let what Mikaela had just said confuse him. He had mentally done a rounded up calculation from what little information Mikaela had told him before. Yuuichirou was pretty sure Mikaela was around twenty.

 

"Don't worry about it right now, if I put you down as a 5 year old, there's no way they'd let you in unless you were born on a leap year,” Yuuichirou frowned to himself, continuing to fill things out. Mikaela looked over his shoulder, chewing on his lip as he continued with his semi-sloppy hand writing.

 

Once he was done, he dropped the pen and stretched out his hands and fingers because he tended to cramp up after writing a lot. He'd probably end up with carpal tunnel at this rate.

 

Mikaela was fascinated at the writing system. It was beautiful, but so incredibly complex. He was starting to figure it out, but it still was a challenge, since he had to consider the human thought process. Luckily, it very closely paralleled the thought process of his own species. 

 

He squinted at the mug of what Yuuichirou called coffee. It was sitting on his desk, steaming and dark. Yuuichirou had poured a packet of something inside of it. When he set the empty packet down, Mikaela snatched it and stared at it, then placed his finger inside the bag to get a couple grains out on his finger. He licked it, then scrunched his nose.

 

“This isn’t natural,” Mikaela murmured. “This doesn’t taste right… Yuu-chan, is this made by humans or is it made by the earth?” He asked, with his tail out and flicking with irritation. He didn’t have to hide himself when he was at Yuuichirou’s home, after all. He also gave his skin a break and faded back to his natural blue. 

 

Yuuichirou paused and stared at him with a confused expression on his face. "Of... course?" He continued to stare at Mikaela as he reached over to pick up the trash and toss it into the bin. "Humans make things to make them taste better, but I guess the Earth could've made it too?" He pursed his lips. "We just... mix them and make better tasting things?"

 

His brows furrowed and he turned back to the papers to look over anything else that he needed to fill out while Mikaela was doing… whatever he was doing with his tail swishing in such an agitated manner.

 

It's not like they were hurting anything by making unnatural sugar, other than humans themselves, who simply made way too much... Yuuichirou grew suspicious of Mikaela's silent agitation.

 

"Don't you dare think about taking my coffee away."

 

Mikaela tensed up, his tail freezing mid-swish.

 

He had his fingers pinched around a few of the packets of man-made substance, and he held them above the bin where humans discarded their waste.

 

“Uhm…” Mikaela squinted at the packets, then stubbornly looked back at Yuuichirou. “Yuu-chan, I don’t think this is healthy. Creatures should only eat what their planet provides them. For humans to make their own artificial foods… that’s not a good thing for your body, is it?” 

 

He reluctantly put the packets back where he grabbed them from, but the urge to throw them away was still strong. Plus, he was suspicious of the coffee itself. All of it seemed pretty artificial to him. 

 

"I mean, yeah,” Yuuichirou sighed and rubbed his forehead. "Humans are pretty unhealthy, but we do whatever the hell we want because it's available to us.” He flipped over a page once he was finished filling out the packet, then pushed it to the side as he turned his computer chair towards Mikaela.

 

"Don't touch my coffee or my sweets, though..." He warned, squinting over at Mikaela while reaching over and taking the sugar packets away. "And not everyone eats or drinks like this, so it's fine." Yuuichirou frowned at him, clicking his pen. He shifted for a moment before moving to place his pen down and get out of his seat. 

 

"Speaking of food, you haven't eaten yet, do you want anything?"

 

He moved towards the door, placing his hand on the handle. He was turned halfway towards Mikaela still, watching for a response. He was rather hungry himself, despite the coffee. He probably needed a nap, too.

 

Mikaela hadn’t tried Earth food since he landed, and he managed to maintain enough energy to make it around for quite some time. 

 

“As long as it’s made by Earth and not humans,” Mikaela said hesitantly. It wasn’t like he knew the difference, but he definitely would not be trying any of the coffee Yuuichirou drank anytime soon. 

 

He followed Yuuichirou when they headed downstairs, and Mikaela was able to prance down the stairs much easier than he was able to climb them. He liked the scents coming from where the Earth food was stored; he imagined it would taste pretty good. He really was lucky to have landed on a planet with life that was, in some ways, very similar to his own kind. 

 

Yuuichirou paused and furrowed his brows as he looked over in Mikaela's direction. "So… do you… eat meat and stuff?" He asked. He headed into the kitchen and pulled open the freezer, his lips pursing as he looked into it with contemplation. He wasn’t too sure about what he wanted to eat.

 

He grabbed a box of lasagna, then shut the door once he pulled it out. It wouldn't take too long for it to cook in the oven.

 

Yuuichirou glanced back over at Mikaela, watching him look around and touch the cabinets. He didn’t think wood and furniture would be that interesting, but then again, Yuuichirou was used to all of this.

 

"Would it be alright if you tried this?" He questioned further, taking the lasagna from the box to show Mikaela. Placing it down on the counter, Yuuichirou turned the oven on to preheat it.

 

"It's not too bad and not particularly unhealthy."

 

Mikaela was distracted for a bit, not answering Yuuichirou’s first question as he slowly opened and closed the cabinets. They were not even thermo-regulated? Mikaela blinked at them curiously, then noticed Yuuichirou opening up a metallic box that was cold inside.

 

That seemed more like what he had on his own planet. He stared at the box Yuuichirou held, his tail waving wearily. 

 

“Okay…” Mikaela decided he had to start somewhere with human food. He sat down and patiently waited as Yuuichirou prepared the food. Eventually, it was set down in front of him, and he was handed two… sticks.

 

Mikaela stared at them blankly.

 

“How do you eat with these sticks?” Mikaela asked nervously. “Am… am I supposed to stab the food? Like this?” He slammed one of the sticks into some of the ‘lasagna,’ as Yuuichirou had called it, but the food did not stick. 

 

His lips twitching upwards, Yuuichirou picked his own chopsticks up to show Mikaela how he was supposed to hold them. "Mika, these are called chopsticks,” he explained before his smile widened further.

 

"I'll teach you how to use them later, I felt like teasing you a bit… but we don't usually eat lasagna with chopsticks." Yuuichirou reached over and took the utensils away from Mikaela. "That would be really hard to do, but not impossible."

 

He rinsed them off and set them in the sink before moving the a drawer to pull out two forks for the both of them. He returned to his seat and handed Mikaela one.

 

"You can stab it with this, but don't do it so aggressively this time,” he chuckled.

 

“Ah, thank you, Yuu-chan!” Mikaela perked up at the sight of the fork. It was definitely more similar to what he was used to. He stumbled with the fork at first, but then got the hang of it and carefully ate the human food known as lasagna. 

 

It was different- it was certainly foreign and alien to him, but it wasn’t bad. He began eating it relatively quickly, his eyes sparkling at the new flavors and textures he was experiencing.

 

“Earth food is so good!” Mikaela commented, his mouth partially full. He continue to eat more of it until the plate was empty, and he felt much more satisfied than before. “Thank you, Yuu-chan!” He smiled brightly at Yuuichirou. 

 

Yuuichirou was just barely finished with his own plate, since he didn't usually rush himself while eating. He quirked a brow at Mikaela and glanced at his empty plate.

 

"Did you want more?" He took a bite of food and waited to swallow before speaking again. "You eat really fast..."

 

His lips pursed until he jumped when he phone buzzed. He pulled it out and checked what the notification was, only to frown at the message from Shinoa asking more about Mikaela.

 

He would have to come up with a more sophisticated story later on.

 

Yuuichirou shoved his phone into his pocket again and returned to his task of eating.

 

— 

 

At first, the university allowed Mikaela to follow Yuuichirou around as a potential student. They took a few days to actually process his paperwork. This gave Yuuichirou plenty of anxiety, considering it was all fake and made with the help of Guren’s friend Goshi, who winked at him and said it would all be “taken care of.”

 

How reliable Goshi’s fake documents would be, no one would know until Yuuichirou got a response from the university.

 

They must have not doubted Yuuichirou much, because hardly two days had passed and Mikaela was officially a student at the university. 

 

Over the course of those days, Yuuichirou’s friends became more curious of Mikaela, particularly one of them.

 

“So, Mika-san…” Shinoa said one day as they were all eating lunch. “You don’t seem too familiar with the food here.”

 

“It is very different,” Mikaela said, blinking down at something that Yuuichirou claimed was his favorite. It was called ‘curry.’

 

“Really?” Shinoa leaned on one hand with her elbow on the table. “I thought curry was pretty common in Russia.”

 

“It is not,” Mikaela said lightly. He really didn’t know the answer, but for whatever reason, Yuuichirou told him it was very important to keep the fact that he is an alien secret. 

 

It wasn’t until the last friend that had been talked about quite a bit finally showed up. His name was Yoichi, and as soon as he stepped over, Mikaela felt something… different about him.

 

Yoichi breathed out a long and drawn out sigh. He closed his eyes as he sat down next to Shinoa and ignored Mikaela. He seemed to not notice him just yet.

 

"Ugh, guys, I'm not usually one to complain, but the new science professor gives too much homework,” Yoichi gave a lopsided smile. Yuuichirou quirked a brow and immediately got into a defensive attitude.

 

"Too much?" Yuuichirou breathed out. "There is never enough science homework."

 

"Yeah, but I'm convinced science is your guilty fetish and get off on it every night,” Yoichi joked. "'Oh, yes, space is so big!’” He mocked, feigning a moan and what Yuuichirou might've sounded like while getting off.

 

Yuuichirou bristled as his face scrunched up in disgust. Pink tinged his cheeks and ears. "You've been hanging around Shinoa too much…”

 

"Guilty!" Shinoa cheered.

 

"Fuck you,” Yuuichirou grumbled.

 

"Go for it, I don't mind,” she winked.

 

Yuuichirou gagged and rolled his eyes. "I may swing both ways, but the day I swing your way is the day I try acid."

 

All of the jokes went over Mikaela’s head. He watched the exchange, tilting his head slightly, but he eventually lost interest and continued eating the curry. It really was delicious… 

 

… but was it the food that was making his nose itch? He sniffed a few times and his eyes began to water. He had been eating the curry for some time now, so why was he only getting allergic reactions now?

 

Mikaela’s head shot up and he glanced around. There were no creatures with fur nearby… 

 

Mikaela suddenly sneezed and caught the attention of everyone at the table. 

 

“Are you alright…?” Kimizuki asked slowly. “Are you allergic to something?”

 

“Is there any fur here?” Mikaela asked, rubbing at his eyes irritably. 

 

“No?” Mitsuba glanced around. “Ah, Yoichi has a cat at home…” 

 

“A cat?” Mikaela repeated, confused at the word. 

 

“Yeah, uh… I don’t know how to say it in Russian,” Mitsuba murmured, then pulled a picture up on her phone and showed Mikaela. He blinked at it. It was colored dully and its eyes were pretty bright. It looked sort of similar to the creatures on his home planet. 

 

“A-Ah… I’m sorry,” Yoichi said timidly. “There might still be fur on my clothes.”

 

Mikaela stared at him. There was something about his aura… he sensed anxiety coming from him. Humans didn’t give off such a distinct scent. He narrowed his eyes and Yoichi fidgeted nervously. 

 

“Oi, it’s not his fault,” Kimizuki defended. “Quit staring at him like that.” 

 

“Sorry,” Mikaela turned away, but he was still wondering what made Yoichi stand out amongst the others. 

 

Yuuichirou waved his hand to pull the attention away from Mikaela. He sighed and offered Yoichi an apologetic smile which made the brunet relax a bit. "Don't worry too much about it, there are also stray cats that like to wander around campus." He explained, crossing his arms over the surface of the table they were sitting at.

 

Shinoa quirked a brow when she remembered this. "Oh right, Yuu likes to try and bring a lot of them home."

 

"I don't, not anymore." Yuuichirou frowned at her. "It's been three years, Shinoa."

 

"She never forgets anything, nor does she ever let you live it down, Yuu,” Mitsuba stated with a small shrug, placing her phone back within her back pocket of her high-waisted jeans.

 

"Yoichi, how old is your cat?" Yuuichirou asked, resting his chin in his hand as he turned his attention to the boy.

 

"Uhm… almost three years old in human,” Yoichi shrugged, lips pursing. He was never the best at remembering birthdays.

 

In human? Mikaela narrowed his eyes. Why would a human say such a weird thing?

 

The others continued to chatter about Yoichi’s cat, but Mikaela found it difficult to join in when he was so uneasy. Yoichi seemed to notice his stare, for he didn’t meet Mikaela’s eyes once during any conversations. 

 

Mikaela sneezed again, and again, and a third time, then scratched at his nose irritably. 

 

“Are you alright?” Shinoa asked him, tilting her head. Her eyes flicked up to Mikaela’s hair, then focused on something before her eyes went back to his eyes. 

 

“I’m just… my nose is clogged,” Mikaela responded. “I think it’s from the cat…”

 

“Maybe Yuu-san should get you some allergy pills or something,” she said. “If they’d work on someone like you…” 

 

Mikaela tilted his head, oblivious to what she meant, but she smiled and ended their conversation. She turned and interrupted Yuuichirou and the others. 

 

“I think Mika-san needs something for his allergy,” Shinoa suggested to Yuuichirou. “Maybe you should take him to the health clinic.” 

 

Kimizuki perked up. "You probably should, Yuu, who knows what kind of foreign diseases he could have brought." Kimizuki smirked to himself, choosing that moment to take the opportunity to tease the poor blond.

 

"Now you're just not being nice,” Yuuichirou frowned at him, eyebrows furrowing. "But I'll take him, I guess..." He casted a worried look over at Mikaela.

 

He wasn't all that sure what would happen when he got Mikaela there and they found out that he wasn't quite human at all.

 

"Maybe..." Yuuichirou repeated in an almost dazed like state before he shook his head rapidly and looked back at the others with a goofy grin on his lips. "Don't worry, I'll make sure he's okay!” Yuuichirou assured, then casted a half hearted glare over at Kimizuki who merely just looked smugly pleased with himself.

 

“Alright, if you say so,” Shinoa shrugged casually. “Anyways, I gotta get going to class. I’ll see you losers later!”

 

“Who’re you calling a loser?” Mitsuba grumbled as she left with a playful wave. 

 

— 

 

When Shinoa was far enough away, she flipped open her phone and called up her older sister. As usual, Mahiru picked up after only a few rings. 

 

“My dearest sister!” Mahiru’s voice sung on the line. “What brings you to call me today? Love advice?”

 

“Not quite,” Shinoa teased back. “Mii-chan is as stubborn as always, but I’ll update you later. Anyways, tell me everything you know about aliens.”

 

“Aliens?” Mahiru hummed for some time, as if she was wondering what to say first. “They definitely exist. There’s no way they can’t with all that space out there, now is there?”

 

“Of course.” Shinoa sat down at a bench and glanced up at the sky as she spoke. “Is there any chance of them coming to earth?”

 

“Sure there is,” Mahiru answered. Shinoa blinked, her eyes following a few drifting clouds.

 

“What about aliens that look like humans?” Shinoa added. 

 

“There’s old cave markings about something like that,” Mahiru said lightly, as if she was talking about something funny. It made Shinoa’s eyebrows tense and she listened carefully. She knew her sister enjoyed talking in riddles. “They’re kinda cute from what I remember!” A pause stopped her before she continued, “from what I saw of the cave paintings, of course.”

 

Shinoa was probably more suspicious than she was before the call. Her sister was full of mystery. 

 

“I’ll send you a link to the article about those cave paintings,” Mahiru added after Shinoa didn’t respond. “Then maybe you can do some investigating?” 

 

“Thanks, onee-san.” Shinoa swung her legs gently. 

 

“What made you so curious all of a sudden?” Mahiru asked before she could hang up. Shinoa smiled playfully and sighed, feigning deep thought until she finally settled on an answer. 

 

“Just a dream.” She couldn’t hold back a chuckle- she loved teasing her sister in the same way she teased Shinoa. “You should come visit campus sometime soon, onee-san. Yuu-san’s got a new friend from Russia apparently. He’s experiencing some culture shock or something.”

 

“Sounds like a funny guy,” Mahiru sounded curious, but before she could ask more, Shinoa continued.

 

“My class begins in a moment, I’ll be late if I stall any longer,” she said. “It was nice talking to you, onee-san. Bye bye!” 

 

She hung up and stood, thinking all about aliens and Mikaela on the entire walk to her next class. 

 

— 

 

Mikaela wasn’t necessarily new to the idea of showering, but he didn’t realize that humans had to do it so often. 

 

He was handed new clothes that were similar to the ones he was already wearing as well as a fluffy towel. He was told to wash himself off with the soaps inside the shower, dry himself, and re-dress- but with the new clothes, because the ones he wore currently were now ‘dirty.’ 

 

He guess he understood, but humans were so odd to Mikaela. Why were their clothes dirty after such a short amount of time? Why did they have to bathe every day or every few days? Mikaela thought that was too tedious, considering his own suit was advanced enough to stay free of most dirts and bacteria. 

 

Mikaela managed to get the human clothes off, but he stared at what Yuuichirou had called a ‘shower’ and his mind spun. There were only two dials. It couldn’t go so badly, could it? 

 

With a deep breath, Mikaela crouched down and yanked both of the dials, hard

 

That was clearly the wrong thing to do. 

 

Water came spewing out at an alarmingly fast rate, spraying everywhere and making Mikaela scramble backwards in fear. His tail shot out behind him and the fur spiked up with his shock. 

 

He was ready to bolt out from the bathroom to get Yuuichirou, but he knew humans were strange about states of undress. He pulled on his former pair of boxers and opened the door. 

 

“Yuu-chan!” Mikaela called out. “I-I don’t know what I did wrong, but the shower, it’s-!” 

 

Guren's worst fear had happened. He hadn't heard Mikaela shouting but after one drop of water fell from the vents, he prepared himself for more than just that one measly drop. He could hear the water gushing from upstairs and he just knew it was going to cost him a fortune to get it fixed.

 

While knowing this, Guren continued to stand in the kitchen with a deadpan expression, cupping his ceramic mug of coffee and sipping as Yuuichirou darted up the stairs.

 

"Mika- what the fuck?!" Yuuichirou screamed, looking past Mikaela standing in the doorway and at the water spraying from the tiled wall of the shower.

 

"How did you even manage this?!" He brought his hands up to his face and dragged them through his hair before squeezing his eyes shut. "God… dammit."

 

His frustration was contained with a whisper. Yuuichirou had no way of turning the water off without calling the company and asking or having them turn it off. All he could do was stare at the water flooding and dripping into the vent within the bathroom and gushing towards the hallway.

 

Yuuichirou stepped back, but it was inevitable that his socks would become wet.

 

Mikaela paced around with his tail lashing from side to side with anxiety. He knew this wasn’t a good situation. Why was the shower so complicated!?

 

“Hold on, I can try something!” Mikaela said, then scrambled to the garage quickly. He passed by Guren, who continued to sip his coffee as if it was a peaceful day, with nothing to disturb him. 

 

Mikaela rummaged inside of his ship, pulling out multiple tools without thinking too deeply about each of them. He darted back upstairs and pushed past Yuuichirou, stepping in the water and squinting as he got closer to the source. He was getting pelted in water, but he reached over and began cranking, twisting and pushing certain nobs. 

 

He turned something and suddenly, boiling hot water blast out from the shower. Mikaela screeched and ran away quickly. Steam began filling the room and Mikaela looked at Yuuichirou doubtfully. 

 

“I think I made it worse,” Mikaela whimpered. 

 

"Would you stop fiddling around with things and making it worse?!" Yuuichirou threw his hands up as he spoke, turning around towards Mikaela in an irate manner.

 

He clenched his hands into fists before darting back down the stairs and towards the water heater. He stopped for a moment to figure out which dial he needed to turn before reaching over and shutting the water off. He didn’t have any other way of stopping the water from shooting out like it was.

 

Yuuichirou sighed and moved out of the garage, moving back towards the stairs.

 

"Mika, if you don’t know how to do something, please…” He huffed out, kicking at the water in the bathroom. "Ask me."

 

Mikaela nodded slowly, feeling guilty for causing so much damage. He would offer to fix it, but he had only worsened the issue.

 

Instead, he secluded himself in the garage and looked over all of his tools. He would have to fix it somehow. How complicated could a simple Earth contraption be? Their tools had already been obviously primitive compared to Mikaela’s. It would be easy to fix.

 

Mikaela gathered his tools and rushed into the bathroom, splashing about in the water that was still covering the entire area around and inside the bathroom.

 

During this time, Yuuichirou took the evening to do his homework. Mikaela inched into his room, eager to show him what he had accomplished, but still nervous over upsetting Yuuichirou. His tail drooped low and the furry tip of it flicked from side to side with anxiety. If he knew more about the behavior of Earth animals, he would have realized he was acting a lot like a scolded kitten. 

 

“Yuu-chan…” Mikaela spoke softly. “Uhm… could you… show me how the shower works again?” 

 

Yuuichirou lifted his head with a confused frown on his face. He figured his earlier outburst was probably the cause of Mikaela's timidness. He straightened from his hunched over position and sat his pencil down before turning around in his chair, one arm draped over the back.

 

"I can show you how to turn it on, but I'm sure you're perfectly capable of that if you don’t use so much force next time,” he assured, a slight smile pulling over his lips.

 

He lowered his head and pushed out of the chair before reaching over and taking Mikaela's hand to lead him to the bathroom. The carpet in the hallway was still damp- Guren would probably have to steam clean it now so no mold ended up growing- even the bathroom tiles were still slippery.

 

Yuuichirou let go of Mikaela's hand and moved towards the shower. 

 

“Wait- whoa, it’s fixed!?” Yuuichirou stared at the shower, amazed that it looked as if nothing had happened just a few hours ago. Mikaela’s chest puffed out with pride and he beamed at Yuuichirou.

 

“I repaired it!” Mikaela proclaimed.

 

“Wow, thank you,” Yuuichirou smiled. “Well, just to make sure this doesn’t happen again…” He reached down and turn the knobs on while being bent over at an angle where Mikaela could see how to turn it on.

 

"You turn it this way for warm water, and that way for cold,” he said as he demonstrated.

 

Mikaela watched carefully, his tail swishing a bit more enthusiastically now that he was learning new things. He remembered what Yuuichirou told him about showering and removed his sweater, then started to take off his pants. 

 

“Got it, thanks, Yuu-chan!” He dropped the pants and inched the boxers down, but before he could, he startled at Yuuichirou’s flustered reaction and froze in place as Yuuichirou left the bathroom in a hurry.

 

He closed the door behind him and Mikaela was once again reminded about humans and their awkward attitudes about nudity. 

 

“If you’re in a bath together, it’s not weird,” Yuuichirou explained to Mikaela before, “but when together alone or somewhere that you’re not changing at the same time, it’s- … it means something else!”

 

Mikaela remembered and sighed softly. He assumed the bathroom counted as a bath, but Yuuichirou had used a different word. If Mikaela remembered correctly, it was something like ‘onsen.’ 

 

With a shrug, Mikaela dropped the last article of clothing and got inside of the shower. 

 

Yuuichirou exhaled deeply as he paused outside the bathroom door. He had schoolwork to focus on for now and not an alien. The floor creaked as he shifted his weight, moving back towards his room with his socks sliding across the carpeted floor. Yuuichirou ignored the dampness of the floor and merely made it a small task to change his socks once he returned to his room.

 

Sitting down in his computer chair once more, Yuuichirou rested his head in his hands. He stared down at the books in front of him for a long moment before picking up his pencil. However, his mind seemed to lag and exhaustion flooded over his body. He soon placed the writing tool back down to stand up instead, then retreated to his bed and promptly slipped beneath the blankets.

 

I can deal with the rest in the morning, he told himself. Eyes began to close and his breathing soon became shallow. It wasn't often that Yuuichirou put off his homework but he sometimes made an exception to catch some much needed rest.

 

When Mikaela was finished with his shower, he came back into the room, bursting with a bunch of new questions about the water on Earth- anywhere from how much was there, how dependent were humans on it, and the list went on.

 

But before he could ask these questions, he had walked in to a sleeping Yuuichirou. 

 

Mikaela inched out of the room slowly and decided to go elsewhere in the house.  He turned the corner into the kitchen and bristled at the sight of Guren dumping a packet of sugar in his coffee. 

 

Guren turned around and narrowed his eyes at Mikaela. “What is it?” 

 

Mikaela’s tail was lashing angrily. “That’s not healthy for humans,” he argued. “Why do you have that in your home? Why are you feeding it to Yuu-chan?” 

 

Guren sipped at his coffee, then set the mug down on the counter. “Don’t get all health-freak on me. A cup of coffee every now and then isn’t harmful, you know.” 

 

Mikaela crossed his arms, still staring at the offending drink. “It’ll build up and eventually harm your health.” He then went over to the fridge. “There must be something healthier to drink, right?”

 

“Water, I guess,” Guren hummed. Mikaela rummaged through the fridge and found a few colorful cans. He pulled them out.

 

“How about this?” Mikaela held it out to Guren, who raised his eyebrows amusedly. 

 

“Well…” he started, but as he was thinking of a response, Mikaela looked at the can and cracked it open. After a loud snap, a thin fog misted out of the opening and the liquid inside bubbled and fizzed. 

 

“This- this is like σόδα,” Mikaela realized after sniffing at the opening. “The word for it here is incredibly similar… this is soda.” This made Mikaela even more upset. He glared at it, then tipped it and dumped it right down the sink.

 

“Oi, that was a perfectly good can of soda that you just wasted,” Guren complained. “What was that for?”

 

“It’s bad for you!” Mikaela accused, then crumpled the can in his fist and dropped it on the counter. He scurried off to a more secluded area of the house, wondering what he should do with all of the unhealthy things they owned. All of the synthetic sugars in their food was dangerous! He couldn’t let Yuuichirou or Guren consume this stuff!

 

He had to think of a plan, and fast. 

 

— 

 

Sunlight shining in his face due to Yuuichirou's mistake in leaving the roof open ended up waking him up in the morning. He had slept peacefully and comfortably so. It was nice to get a full night's sleep, but even nicer in Yuuichirou’s mind to stay up and discover or reread things about space and science.

 

Being well rested as he was, Yuuichirou rolled over with a groan and covered his eyes to shield them from the onslaught of the sun's rays. He laid there for a few more minutes until his stomach growled. He sighed and pulled his hand from his face and sat up whilst yawning. A stretch of his legs helped him wake up a bit more.

 

He hoped Guren left him some cereal. If not, he could make do with a bagel or something. Anything but cooking.

 

Taking his sweet time with descending the stairs, Yuuichirou ran his fingers through his hair and made a mental note to shower again, especially since he could feel how his hair was sticking up.

 

"Morning…” He mumbled as he entered the living room to get to the kitchen.

 

Mikaela was already up and about. He was chewing on something Guren called fruit, which tasted really good and felt very natural. He felt safe eating it and when Yuuichirou walked in, he turned quickly, his cheeks puffed out with how much food he was trying to chew all at once.

 

After he swallowed, he said, “Yuu-chan, good morning!”

 

His eyes followed Yuuichirou as the human made his way into the kitchen. He opened the cabinet and stared dazedly at it, then scrunched his eyebrows and immediately looked around the counter.

 

Does he realize already…? Mikaela nervously glanced away, hoping that Yuuichirou hadn’t noticed the lack of coffee packets in the cabinet...

 

… but that’s probably exactly what he was looking for. Mikaela held back a nervous laugh, his fluffy tail-tip twitching from side to side with unease. 

 

It seemed there was no cereal left and disappointment quickly fueled Yuuichirou's irritation. He shut the cabinets a little too harshly before moving to the fridge and searching for a bagel. He knew there has to be something left. He didn’t seem to notice the lack of anything else besides what he was searching for.

 

Satisfied with finding the bag of bagels, Yuuichirou pulled them out and made work of taking one out to toast it. He didn’t even seem to notice Mikaela in the other room at the moment. He felt pretty groggy and only food was on his mind.

 

"Guess I'll buy more later..." He mumbled, leaning against the counter. Yuuichirou waited patiently for his bagel to finish in the toaster with some cream cheese waiting beside him.

 

Immediately alarmed, Mikaela’s eyes widened. Now he was almost totally convinced that Yuuichirou knew the coffee was gone. But he must have also noticed that the sugary cereals were also taken away…

 

Even so, Yuuichirou hadn’t picked up on the fact that Mikaela was guilty for the disappearance of the unhealthy foods. Guren was in a hurry when he left the house that morning, muttering something about getting coffee elsewhere. Knowing that Guren could obtain such an unhealthy beverage so easily irked Mikaela, but it wasn’t like he could eliminate all of the coffee on the planet.

 

Well… maybe he could, but that wasn’t his goal in the end. 

 

“Buy what?” Mikaela decided to ask, carefully peeking at Yuuichirou from the other side of the couch. 

 

"Cereal,” Yuu muttered shortly. The sound of the butter knife scraping over the bagel as Yuu spread his cream cheese over it was all that could be heard for a moment, followed by the plate softly clattering against the surface of the granite countertop. Yuuichirou sat the knife down into the sink and grabbed the remains of his mess up, returning things to their places and gathering the small pieces of trash into a pile for now.

 

Taking a moment to indulge himself in his bagel, he took a bite and felt his eyelids flutter shut. He hummed softly at the taste before looking down at his plate and placing said bagel back down beside it's fully intact twin.

 

He grabbed the pieces of trash before stepping over to the trashcan, using the foot pedal to open up the lid. Yuuichirou paused in his task of throwing away trash when he saw his favorite cereal brand name on a box in said trash can. 

 

He closed his eyes and took in a deep breath, knowing full well the damn box was still full of cereal. 

 

Before tossing his hand full of trash into the trashcan, he reached down to grab the box of cereal.

 

"Mika..." He said slowly. "Either you have the money to be paying me and Guren back for throwing out our shit or you don't touch this, got it?" He frowned.

 

Shit, he knows! Mikaela flinched at the sound of his name, then sunk a little lower behind the couch so that only his eyes and nervously waving tail could be seen.

 

“Yuu-chan, it’s not healthy!” Mikaela protested, but when Yuuichirou fixed his eyes on Mikaela in a glaring contest, Mikaela stubbornly narrowed his eyes and glared back at him. Their eyes remained locked as Yuuichirou pulled the box from the trash and set it on the counter. Their contact only broke when Yuuichirou reached into the cabinet for a bowl.

 

“I bet if you try it, you’ll like how it tastes,” Yuuichirou suggested, sending a sly glance in Mikaela’s direction.

 

Mikaela was curious as he heard the sounds of the cereal pebbles hitting the bowl’s bottom, but he immediately stomped it down. The food was hardly real food!

 

“Never!” Mikaela declared, then turned around on the couch with a huff.

 

He’d find a way to make these humans healthy and eat natural foods! It would just have to be a bit more creative than simply throwing stuff away. 

 

It was like Yuuichirou read his mind in that moment.

 

“What are you scheming over there?” 

 

“Nothing!”

 

Mikaela had to learn to be sneakier. Humans were quite clever…

Chapter Text

Everything was new and exciting to Mikaela. From the massive earth plants to the small creatures flying between them, Mikaela was fascinated. He always knew that as a species, he was meant to go explore and discover new and intelligent life, but he never thought that it would exceed his expectation. Mikaela was already exhilarated to learn, but his interest truly was higher than ever now.

 

Mikaela had been living on earth for quite some time now, even though his concept of time was a tad out-of-whack due to the differences between rotation and orbit of Earth and Iridýon. According to Yuuichirou, it had been “a little over a month” since he landed.

 

Yuuichirou noticed Mikaela’s interest in other geographical landscapes. Mikaela kept staring at images on the computer, which Mikaela claimed “was really easy to operate.”

 

It was odd, since Mikaela couldn’t properly work something as easy as a shower, but a computer was nothing to him. That alien was filled with strange quirks.

 

Still, Mikaela was constantly searching up videos and images of the ocean. He had only glimpsed it in real life, but Yuuichirou knew Mikaela wanted to go see it. So Yuuichirou set aside time to partake in relatively mundane things like going to the beach for the sake of Mikaela. For a week, he worked very hard and got all of his work done early so that the weekend was free.

 

When the day finally came, Mikaela was entirely too excited and not too sure how to prepare.

 

“I can just wear this!” Mikaela insisted as he held up his alien suit. When Yuuichirou gave him an apprehensive look, Mikaela lowered the suit. “Is it not okay…?”

 

"People would look at you odd, though if you want a suit, there's a diver’s suit I guess... but no." Yuuichirou shook his head and pressed his lips together as they quirked up a bit in an adoring smile.

 

Yuuichirou moved over to his dresser and pulled out a pair of swim trunks and a tank top before handing it over to Mikaela. "Here, this is a lot comfier than those sweaters, I'm sure." He explained. "Plus I hear it's warmer by the beach, so… this should be fine."

 

Yuuichirou himself wore light clothing, sticking to his shorts that stopped right below his knees. Otherwise he wore a light jacket.

 

He'd been working so hard to free up this weekend because he wanted Mikaela to enjoy himself.

 

“Ah… okay!” Mikaela agreed to the clothing quickly, knowing that Yuuichirou was an expert at Earth culture since he lived here. He’s learned since protesting against wearing anything else in the beginning.

 

Mikaela took the clothes and changed into them in the bathroom, and was told not to wear underwear under the shorts he was given. Mikaela took his word and did as instructed. He wrapped his tail around his torso, hidden under his tank top and then changed his skin tone to appear human.

 

“Let’s go, Yuu-chan!” Mikaela cheered, buzzing with excitement to finally experience Earth’s sea. It was similar to Iridýon’s oceans, but he wondered if the sand also sparkled and glowed like it did at home. From what he’s seen, the Earth’s beaches only do that in a couple locations due to certain organisms.

 

By the time they arrived, Mikaela took off excitedly, running through the sand without a second thought. When it burned beneath his feet, he hopped around nervously, then decided running into the water as quickly as possible was the best solution. The sensitive pads of his feet tingled as he dashed to the sea. He had to slow down as little pebbles and chunks of rock prodded at his toes. He took careful steps to the ocean’s edge, where he finally paused and waited as the waves washed in.

 

Yuuichirou giggled a bit to himself as he watched Mikaela experience the different textures of the earth, sand and water. The sand was a bit hot to him as well, but it was bearable as long as he didn’t stand in one place for too long. He ended up joining Mikaela in the shallow water just for the cooling sensation of the salt water rushing around his feet, pushing and pulling as the tides rolled in. He didn’t mimd the pebbles and rocks, since they weren't particularly sharp where Mika and Yuu stood.

 

"Cool, huh?" Yuuichirou said, crossing his arms over his chest. His attention was drawn to the wide expanse of the ocean and the horizon. Listening to the sound of the waves and just looking out into the distance eased his mind, almost putting him in a trance.

 

"The sand isn't always hot, by the way, only in the summer." Yuuichirou moved his attention towards Mikaela and smiled a little more. "It's nice here."

 

The ocean was more than cool- it was incredible. Mikaela was entranced, his eyes glued to the horizon. He stood still, admiring the massive waves crashing far off in the distance. From here, they looked no larger than ripples. The edges of the waves foamed white and crashed into the rest of the sea.

 

The salty scent breezed past Mikaela, ruffling his hair and soothing the heat on his skin. The water around his ankles was cool and Mikaela grinned, then focused back down to the ocean. He stepped a little farther in until his feet were cushioned by soft, muddy sand rather than sharper rocks and shells.

 

“Whoa…” Mikaela jumped with surprise as a fish darted past him. He remembered seeing those creatures on the computer before! It was certainly something to see them swim by so quickly in real life, and they were so close to Mikaela. It was almost like he could touch them.

 

Mikaela waded deep enough until the water licked at the edge of his tank top. He stood there and sighed contentedly as the cool water surrounded him. The water combined with the breeze was incredibly calming. Wanting to experience this with someone else, Mikaela turned back to look at Yuuichirou. “Yuu-chan, it’s so nice! Come in deeper!”

 

Yuuichirou looked a bit apprehensive on wading further into the water. He still had his phone in his pocket and nowhere to set it down. Pursing his lips, Yuuichirou glanced back then over to Mikaela once more. "I think I'm okay here, maybe next time." He smiled sheepishly.

 

Waves crashing against each other and the sand served as loud white noise, only seeming to become louder but distant at the same time. If he peered out further, hints of dolphins could be seen.

 

"Please be careful with some of the fish, don't get too close…” Yuuichirou warned. Despite the warning, he was still smiling. He knew Mikaela would be fine. As long as he didn't venture out too far into the large expanse of salty water. Then there would be no choice for Yuuichirou, he'd have to jump in after him.

 

"Why don't we walk along the shore?"

 

Mikaela perked up at the suggestion. He cheerfully agreed and emerged from the water, coming closer to Yuuichirou until they were side by side. They stepped out onto the sand, which now felt cooler under Mikaela’s feet now that they were wet from the sea.

 

The tide would come in and wash around their ankles every so often, soothing their steps and bringing tiny shells bumbling across their toes. It was really enjoyable for Mikaela, and he briefly wondered if he ever had so much fun at an ocean on his own planet.

 

As they walked, Mikaela noticed something interesting. It was round and squishy-looking, colored a light pink. His eyes gleamed and he reached down immediately, lifting it within his hands with a broad smile.

 

“Yuu-chan, look at this thing!” Mikaela presented. “What is it?”

 

Yuuichirou was pulled out of his comfortable day dream due to Mikaela’s question. He glanced over at what Mikaela was holding before doing a double-take. His eyes widened suddenly.

 

"Mika!" He hissed. "Put that down!" He urged, reaching over without thinking and snatching the jellyfish from Mikaela. Pain shot through his arms and he immediately dropped it as he tucked his hands between his legs and knelt down. "Fuck!"

 

"Oh my god, holy shit- that fuckin'- hurts…!” He breathed. "That- was a jellyfish, that one isn't deadly but it-" Yuuichirou breathed heavily. “… might've well been."

 

Yuuichirou closed his eyes and blowed on his hand before pushing himself back up slowly. Lifting his hands, he frowned at how red they were.

 

Mikaela watched with wide, confused eyes as the squishy object apparently caused Yuuichirou some pain. He had no idea what it was, but it was swept away by the incoming tide, and Yuuichirou was left looking at his reddening hands.

 

“I-It hurts you?” Mikaela stammered, suddenly feeling guilty for causing Yuuichirou pain. Why did the creature hurt Yuuichirou? Mikaela stared at the human, noticing how sometimes, he could see the blood rise to Yuuichirou’s skin. It made him turn reddish. It must mean human skin is thinner and more sensitive than his own.

 

Still, he had to take away the pain, and fast! Without hesitation, Mikaela gripped Yuuichirou’s wrists, his pupils slitting slightly as he lifted them up. Mikaela leaned down, tenderly pressing his lips to Yuu’s palm. After a second, he moved to the next hand, placing a kiss there as well.

 

“Y-Yeah, it..." Yuuichirou's voice trailed off. He had expected to flinch away from Mikaela’s lips, but the pain radiating through his palms had eased tremendously. He gawked. Despite the flush to his face, Yuuichirou was more in shock than he was flustered. He wasn't too sure how many more surprises Mikaela had in store for him but it was probably many more.

 

"How did-... nevermind," Yuuichirou quickly shook his head and laughed. "Yes, jellies aren't... very friendly. The stinging is a defensive mechanism for them, you see? Their tentacles have... bards sometimes, and they can shock you. Depending on what kind they are, the pain can vary." He explained while pulling his hands from Mikaela. He timidly opened and closed his fists, scrutinizing his skin in bewilderment before he blinked his eyes and shook his head again. He rested his hands by his sides.

 

"Just be careful what you pick up, it seems your skin is… tougher than mine or any other human's." He mused in interest. "Anyways, come on." Yuuichirou reached over and took Mikaela's hand into his own.

 

Mikaela happily followed along, his tail wiggling from where it was hidden underneath his clothes. “Wow, Yuu-chan. Human skin seems to be so thin and soft.” He looked down at their hands, liking how they felt together. To make it more comfortable, he linked their fingers together and immediately liked how their hands fit.

 

It was true that Yuuichirou’s hands were soft. He trailed his thumb pad along the side of Yuuichirou’s hand, content at the smooth texture of the skin underneath. It was also warm, since humans seemed to be quite warm-blooded creatures.

 

Mikaela glanced back up to Yuuichirou and said, “Are you sure there’s not any pain left? I can keep healing, if you need me to.” He didn’t mind, and he wasn’t sure if Yuuichirou minded, but he seemed to have been okay with it.

 

He did turn a bit red, which Mikaela realized was something that humans did when they were embarrassed over something… he wondered why Yuuichirou would be embarrassed over something like healing, but he also got embarrassed when Mikaela had to kiss Yuuichirou to learn Japanese.

 

Mikaela quickly connected the two experiences. They both had to do with lip contact. Before Yuuichirou had a chance to answer, Mikaela blurted out, “Are kisses weird for humans?” Even Mikaela got flustered over that and he averted his eyes. “Sorry for the sudden question, but I just realized that every time I do something with my lips, you turn red. And to my understanding, humans turn red when they are flustered over something. Is that true?”

 

Yuuichirou looked a bit startled at the question but he shook his head. "No, kisses aren't weird." He shrugged a bit, looking down at the water as they waded through the shallow waves.

 

"It's taken as a sign of affection, whether it's platonic, romantic, or parental." Yuuichirou licked his lips slowly as he thought about it before he gave another shrug. He then laughed and looked up at Mikaela. "It just caught me off guard, I've never been kissed in any sort of way," he explained. His hand unknowingly gripped Mikaela's a bit harder.

 

"It seems it means something completely different from where you're from, as it... apparently... takes away pain?" Yuuichirou's eyebrows knitted together and he looked away.

 

Mikaela perked up. “Yes! Using the lips against an injury can heal it,” Mikaela said. “I’m assuming humans do not have that ability…” Unknowing to Mikaela, it must be amusing to humans that the phrase ‘kiss it better’ was literal for his species.

 

Curiosity still tugged at his heart. Mikaela looked over to him again. “Ne, Yuu-chan… what do you mean by romantic…?” He blinked and continued, “What does it mean when humans kiss on the lips? Is that special? Is that ‘romantic?’” He leaned closer to Yuuichirou, unknowingly gazing at his lips as he asked these questions.

 

He just wanted to know the answers, after all… it wasn’t like he knew what he was doing.

 

Yuuichirou felt his heart jump when Mikaela leaned in closer. He let go of Mikaela’s hand and immediately placed it against Mikaela's chest to push him back a little.

 

"Romantic is..." He hesitated, stepping back a half a foot. "When you look at someone and you realize you want to possibly spend your life with that person, when you... when you want to copulate possibly, or... take care of them; you want to hold their hand everyday and keep them by your side because you admire everything about them. You constantly want to learn more about them." Yuuichirou hesitated again before looking away and walking ahead.

 

"I'm not the best one to ask, though, I've never experienced it,” Yuuichirou murmured, playing with the hem of his shirt.

 

Mikaela grinned widely. “I want to know more about you, Yuu-chan!” He exclaimed excitedly. “And holding hands is nice!” He reached out, taking Yuuichirou’s hands in his own. His tail strained from where it was wrapped around his body- how it wanted to wiggle free and wave about. It was hard trying to keep it still to avoid scaring anyone else.

 

He continued to step closer to Yuuichirou, not really noticing the small gestures of being pushed back, or Yuuichirou distancing himself. He simply stepped closer and closer until he was in Yuuichirou’s face again, his eyes sparkling. “It’s only been a while since we’ve met, but maybe being romantic would make us closer!”

 

Mikaela still didn’t quite understand the meaning of romance- to him, it sounded just like a closer form of friendship. He suddenly tensed up, remembering what Yuuichirou said about copulation. “Wait, Yuu-chan, can you reproduce?”

 

Yuuichirou was trying his best to back away from Mikaela without falling. As if it couldn't get any worse, his face bloomed into the darkest blush. Yuuichirou thought his face was on fire and he wanted to run and leave Mikaela on the beach.

 

The question only made it worse.

 

"N-No, wait..." He tried, bringing his hands up to his face in an attempt to calm himself. His head was spinning. "Yes, I can, I-" The sheer embarrassment he felt made him confused and slightly light headed. "You don't seem to understand." He breathed out with a nervous laugh. Mikaela tilted his head.

 

"Romance is when you try and make the other person feel loved, and you want to fall in love and have sex with them, you..." he shook his head vigorously. "Not that I'm saying most couples have sex all the time, but it's perfectly healthy when you're i-in love with someone, I-" He stopped again and made a big 'x' with his arms before spreading them out in a huge gesture saying 'no'.

 

"I can't be romantic with you."

 

Mikaela blinked- once, twice, thrice- confused even more. Sexual acts… that referred to copulation. Only males and females could do that and create children, right? What was the reason that humans had sex- was it for more than just reproduction of their species?

 

“Oh…” Mikaela was only a little disappointed. He still didn’t quite understand the extent of his question or what romance was, but he couldn’t help but to feel Yuuichirou rejected being close to him. “Okay. Sorry, Yuu-chan, I still don’t know what it all means.”

 

Mikaela straightened up and laughed softly. “You need to explain things better, you know! I don’t know what you mean!” He took to teasing Yuuichirou instead, finding the reddish color on his cheeks endearing.

 

Yuuichirou relaxed only slightly and laughed it off. He straightened himself up and fiddled with his hands. "I did tell you I'm not the one to be asking… Shinoa could explain more, probably." He sighed and moved back towards Mikaela. "Let's drop it for now, I just wanna walk around." His voice quieted.

 

Yuuichirou turned and started walking again, sliding his feet across the wet sand as he looked up towards the sky.

 

There were sparse clouds and the sun was bright. He pushed down the confused and anxious feeling in his chest. He wanted to focus on the nice day.

 

Mikaela followed along, cheerful as always, even if his heart ached a little at the realization that Yuuichirou rejected his offer of closer friendship.

 

Maybe there was more to romance than Mikaela understood yet. He tried not to let it hurt too much- after all, he didn’t really understand the extent of what he was asking of Yuuichirou. With time, maybe he could figure it out and ask Yuuichirou again.

 

Now feeling more hopeful, Mikaela walked alongside him, chipper like before. It would be alright for now, surely.

 

 

A week later, Mikaela was sitting in Yuuichirou’s room, lazily examining a book and trying to decipher its meaning. When he got tired, he glanced to the side and noticed Yuuichirou, sitting alone on his bed.

 

It looked comfy. Mikaela decided it would be a good idea to sit on it with him. Now sure of himself, Mikaela sat up and crawled onto the bed.

 

He froze in place when Yuuichirou looked at him, looking shocked and slightly embarrassed. “What is it, Yuu-chan?”

 

Yuuichirou scooted away from Mikaela a little and shook his head. He took a moment to clear his throat before responding with a short answer, "Nothing."

 

He pulled his laptop back over onto his lap properly, hesitating to continue typing his paper. He was acutely aware of Mikaela situating himself beside him and how close he was. He mentally shook his head before continuing his task.

 

He couldn't let anything delay him from his report any longer, as he really took biology seriously. As he did for all of his classes… most of the time.

 

"Just try to keep quiet for a little longer, I'm almost done."

 

Mikaela agreed with a cheerful, “Okay!” And sat silently.

 

But he didn’t understand the distance placed between them. He simple inched himself closer until he was nestled against Yuuichirou, his tail subconsciously curling around Yuuichirou protectively. He stared at Yuuichirou’s screen, fascinated at the act of typing onto a computer. He watched every character display itself across the screen, his pupils dilating at the sight of menus and options creating different characters than before.

 

It wasn’t that primitive compared to Mikaela’s technology. It was old for him, of course, but some of the mechanisms were different, and it was very polished for how old it was to his own planet’s technology.

 

These thoughts ran through his mind, unaware of what Yuuichirou was currently fretting over.

 

Mikaela's tail was wrapped around his waist and Yuuichirou couldn't focus. The words stopped appearing on the screen after a while. He watched the screen and frowned, unable to think. His hands and fingers itched, flexing over the keyboard.

 

Mikaela pressing against him made him feel funny and he ended up reaching down and moving Mikaela's tail from around him. Surely Mikaela knew something of romance, he just wasn't completely used to their language. Right?

 

Yuuichirou suddenly closed his laptop and slipped off the bed. He spun around to face the alien.

 

"Alright, let's... play a game," he tried. "It's called, Go Bother Guren and see how long it takes for him to get angry. Sounds fun, right?" He moved to grab his computer and put it onto his desk. "We'll stop by the campus later, I've got class and I really need to finish this." Yuuichirou said quietly, rubbing at his chest as if it would get rid of the funny feeling.

 

Mikaela’s tail swished with interest. “Yuu-chan, I’ve never heard of a game like that,” he said, eyes wide and perceptive. He had a feeling he was being told to leave, but that Yuuichirou wanted to avoid saying that.

 

Mikaela just wanted to be close to Yuuichirou, but he understood the human’s tone of voice. He slipped from the bed and walked towards him, a small gleam in his eye. He leaned close to Yuuichirou, smiling as he nuzzled his nose against Yuuichirou’s soft cheek.

 

His tail wound around to brush its fluffy end against Yuuichirou’s jaw. Mikaela said, “I know that humans show affection in different ways, and this is one of ours. I’m sorry for bothering you, Yuu-chan.” He spoke low and close to Yuuichirou’s ear, but the next moment, he stepped away entirely and trotted down the stairs happily, unknowing of the state he left Yuuichirou in.

 

Yuuichirou's heart nearly died. He was pretty sure Mikaela really didn't understand the implications and meaning his actions implied. With a nervous lick of his lips, he tried to calm his rapidly beating heart and closed his eyes when Mikaela stepped away.

 

Mikaela had been cool to the touch, but being that close to him was... nice.

 

He couldn't let himself develop feelings for an alien, however. Xenophilia was a thing, but he didn't think he'd be all that into it. He patted himself on the cheek a bit too hard to pull himself back together once Mikaela left the room. He hadn't said anything; he had merely watched him leave.

 

"He's got a lot to learn..." Yuuichirou said to himself, covering his eyes. Maybe once Mikaela started coming to school with him regularly- now that he was enrolled- he'd learn more about romance as well… hopefully. Yuuichirou's heart couldn't take it. He was starting to believe that Mikaela might actually know what it was, but a bigger part of him really doubted it.

 

"You've got a paper to write..." He reminded himself firmly, frowning. He made a note to himself to give a few books on romance to Mikaela at some point.

 

 

A few days later, Mikaela was presented with a novel from Yuuichirou. “Read this,” he said. “It’s about human culture and romance.”

 

Now Mikaela’s interest was piqued. He took the book from Yuuichirou’s hands, curled up on a beanbag in Yuuichirou’s room, and began to read it. Thanks to his knowledge of the Japanese language from the day he landed, he was able to read the language as well. However, even though he could read it, sometimes metaphors and complex ideas didn’t quite make sense.

 

Some things in language needed cultural background and knowledge of the society it comes from. Mikaela could understand this book well enough with the knowledge he had, and as he read on, he was curious of the main character’s feelings for this other character.

 

The protagonist was a female, who seemed to be feeling her heart speed up and her skin warm when she got close to the male she was close friends with.

 

There were descriptions of her stomach filling with “butterflies,” which concerned Mikaela- he hoped those earth creatures known as butterflies didn’t spawn in his gut- but he would ask Yuuichirou about that another time. As he read on, he read how her feelings grew stronger because they trusted each other, respected each other, and enjoyed being around each other.

 

Mikaela’s heart fluttered and squeezed. He thought of Yuuichirou and how he respected him and trusted him. It was true that they hadn’t known each other for very long, but he wanted to experience these things with Yuuichirou.

 

The couple in the book began to press their lips together to kiss. They pressed their tongues together and their bodies rubbed together, creating a sort of heat and friction between their bodies. Mikaela gulped.

 

Why did that sound so enticing? Why did that seem… like something he might want to do with Yuuichirou?

 

The characters continued on, removing their clothing until there was nothing to separate their bare bodies. They got heated, and the male human was filled with an urge to mate, as well as the female…

 

Mikaela set the book down quickly. His face was flushing and he needed a moment to cool off now…

 

Yuuichirou knocked on the door and slowly opened it. "You okay?" He asked, seeing Mikaela's face flushed. "I hope you're not getting sick,” he added, then popped a chip into his mouth.

 

For some reason, Yuuichirou didn't think the book would do much to Mikaela. The alien man had been up in his room for a while; he didn't realize Mikaela might've actually used the entire day just to read a book, not that he hasn't ever done it before.

 

Upon receiving no answer, Yuuichirou said slowly, "Maybe it was too explicit for you..." He glanced down at the closed book then back to Mikaela. He was suddenly amused. "Anyways, let's go eat something, I doubt you're happy with me eating these chips,” he said with a grin.

 

Mikaela followed along, getting to his feet but eyeing the book as he left. He wanted to continue, but he was slightly overwhelmed for a moment. He did need to cool off.

 

But he couldn’t stop thinking about it. He remembered how the humans kissed and kissed, using more than just their lips but also their tongues and teeth. Mikaela itched to experience what it would feel like. He itched to…

 

… kiss Yuuichirou like that.

 

Mikaela’s tail shot out straight in embarrassment. He flittered in place for a second and blurted out, “Sorry, Yuu-chan, I’m going on a walk instead!”

 

His skin tone changed quickly and he wrapped his tail around his torso under his shirt. And then a moment later, Mikaela shot out the front door.

 

Yuuichirou's brows furrowed in worry. Maybe it wasn't the best idea to give him that book.

 

"Okay..." He said belatedly and then sighed. "Chips for dinner it is." He shrugged and plopped down into his computer chair. He spun around in it idly but nearly jumped when Guren barged in without knocking.

 

"What'd you do?"

 

"What do you mean?" Yuuichirou asked, offended.

 

"I mean, how did you manage to scare off an alien and just let him run outside on his own?"

 

"He's not stupid... and I didn’t scare him off,” Yuuichirou argued.

 

"If he isn't back in thirty minutes you better go find him, I don't want him causing anymore trouble." Guren shuddered at the thought of the shower incident.

 

"Fine." Yuuichirou watched Guren leave his room as he ate another handful of chips with narrowed eyes. He probably should've went with Mikaela.

 

He sighed and sat the chips down, brushing his hands off on his jeans as he left the room. He might as well go find him now.

 

 

Meanwhile, Mikaela looked normal in physical appearance, yet incredibly strange to anyone who focused on him. He was blushing and walking briskly to an unknown destination.

 

He was certain of it- he had to feel...  whatever that romance book said, what was the word…

 

… Ah, love. That was the word the book used. Mikaela must be feeling love for Yuuichirou.

 

His heart swelled and swooped. He didn’t quite get it, but that must be it. There was no other explanation.

 

Unless, maybe human love was more complex… he had to look into more books. He turned to head back when his eye caught something colorful.

 

A gorgeous earth plant, with pink petals…

 

Yuu-chan called that a cherry blossom, Mikaela recalled. He couldn’t explain it, but something about the plant's appearance and color was alluring to him. He remembered in the book, the male had given the female something similar- something pink and plant-like- called flowers. Maybe this thing was a flower!

 

Mikaela decided he must do the same thing for Yuuichirou. The female was delighted in the novel, and while Yuuichirou wasn’t a female, Mikaela prayed that the appreciation of flowers was not a gendered thing on Earth.

 

Luckily, Mikaela always kept his laser gun with him in the event of an emergency. It was compact into a notch that could clip onto his belt.

 

Determined, Mikaela pressed the notch and felt as his laser gun unfolded itself into his hand. He aimed the laser down towards the base of the flower and fired, without checking its setting.

 

Unfortunately for Mikaela, the flower burst aflame upon the laser’s impact.

 

Mikaela gaped and staggered back, hurriedly putting the gun away. He looked side to side, panicking as the fire rose to consume the entirety of the flower’s stem.

 

Dark, cloudy smoke rose from the fire and Mikaela knew it was getting the attention of nearby humans. He didn’t want to be blamed for this, but he had no idea what to do next!

 

He turned to his left and, thank his luck, Yuuichirou was there, wide-eyed and frozen in place.

 

“Yuu-chan!” Mikaela called out to him. “The flower is on fire!” He panicked and pointed to the cherry blossom. “I don’t know what to do!” He turned to look at the burning flower, sadness making his heart sink slightly. It was so beautiful, but he just ruined it…!

 

Befuddled and flat out amazed at how this could even happen, Yuuichirou took a bit too long to snap out of it. Shaking his head violently, Yuuichirou pulled his phone out and started dialing for the police. He clearly had a 'fuck this' look on his face.

 

"Hi, yes, fire down near the park, I need help, now," Yuuichirou kept it brief when they answered and then promptly hung up the phone. He stuffed it into his pocket in a rush as he went to grab Mikaela's arm. "I don't know what you did but you can't be here in case they try interrogate you, okay?" He said, tugging on Mikaela's arm. "Let's go. Help will come, but we have to get out of here."

 

He casted a worried glance at the spreading fire before he made a run for it, pulling Mikaela along with him.

 

Sirens were heard in the distance and Yuuichirou kept running. He wasn't even running towards his house. He was just running to get away from the scene and prevent Mikaela from falling into the hands of police or firemen. Both were bad in terms of finding out about an alien on Earth.

 

Mikaela followed Yuuichirou quickly, knowing he couldn’t be caught as the one responsible for the fire. They were far enough away now and he felt Yuuichirou slow down. Mikaela hung his head, his face burning with shame.

 

“I’m so sorry, Yuu-chan!” Mikaela apologized quickly, bowing his head, as he knew it was one of many human ways to show regret. “I didn’t mean to set the flower on fire. I was just trying to harvest it to… to present to you, but everything went wrong.”

 

When he looked back up, Yuuichirou seemed quite confused. Mikaela tried again, “I know it was a large flower, but I thought the more magnificent the flower, the stronger the meaning, so… I thought it was only appropriate. But my harvesting tool seems to be too strong for Earth’s vegetation…” Mikaela glanced to the side regretfully.

 

Yuuichirou brought a hand up to his face and covered half of it for a second. He wouldn't admit that his face felt a little warm, but Mikaela was getting himself into a lot of trouble over the whole thing.

 

"Just... really try to be careful. A lot of things on Earth can catch fire easily, especially if the grass is too dry and it's really hot outside." He said quietly. "There's... a flower shop for stuff like that, and even then you can just pick the flower by hand, or well... harvest by hand, I guess?" Yuuichirou's lips formed a thin line. He dropped his hand down by his side and looked at Mikaela with concern.

 

"You've been acting strange, and that's saying something considering you're from a completely different planet; but whatever it is, talk to me, I'm like... your chauffeur, your tour guide- and I'm here to help you learn things until you decide to leave." After a pause, he added, “I might've been kinda harsh to you sometimes, but you're sending off a lot of signals that I can't be sure of and it's... way too soon for that, if it's even possible for you." He covered his face again but with both hands this time, bowing his head.

 

"Let's just... focus on learning other things and not romance, I don't want to get hurt," he murmured the last part to himself. "Let's go home."

 

Mikaela listened carefully, trying to understand everything Yuuichirou was telling him. The way Yuuichirou was speaking was a bit vague and hard to understand, but he did understand one thing; that it was too soon to try out what Mikaela read about.

 

Mikaela wanted to try, but he guessed it didn’t happen as quickly as he thought. He nodded, feeling his heart sink a little. He didn’t mean to cause so much trouble. Even so, Mikaela didn’t want to cause more trouble by expressing his guilt, so he tried to put on a smile.

 

“Okay, lead the way,” Mikaela settled on saying, hoping that he sounded more cheerful than he was.

 

Yuuichirou paused before his shoulders sagged a bit. He offered a slight smile that seemed a bit defeated and exasperated but he reached over and took Mikaela's hand. "However, this..." he nodded towards their hands, "is fine. Come on."

 

He turned and looked around for a second. He hadn't realized where he had ran off to but it was quiet. For a city, at least. Gathering his bearings, he started to lead Mikaela back to his house. He kept a firm hold on the alien’s hand to make sure he was still there and wouldn't get lost.

 

"Thanks for the thought, though," Yuuichirou said, a tad vaguely.

 

Mikaela grinned, gripping Yuuichirou’s hand a little tighter. Things may not have turned out quite like he expected or hoped them to, but Yuuichirou hadn’t turned his back on Mikaela or abandoned him just yet.

 

His mind was already moving on to new things. Maybe he could visit the so-called flower shops that Yuuichirou had talked about. They were already harvested, it seemed. Mikaela wondered how large the shop was, if the flowers here on Earth were so large!

 

Or so he thought; as they walked, he noticed tiny colorful plants sprouting from the dirt. They looked more suited for human hands, and they were all sorts of colors. Maybe those were flowers, too?

 

Mikaela was struck with a sudden thought. He only had one way to find out what sorts of flowers would be at the shop. “Ne, Yuu-chan! Can you take me to the flower shop sometime?” Mikaela asked, his former sadness put behind him. “I was thinking I could look at the flowers there and compare them to the type I tried to harvest…”

 

For the rest of the walk home, Yuuichirou smiled as he listened to Mikaela’s wild ideas, assuring him that they would definitely visit the shop sometime soon.

 

They held onto each other’s hands the entire way.

Chapter Text

It had been a long day for Yuuichirou. He had three huge tests and an irritating study lecture because everyone around him wouldn't stay quiet enough for him to actually focus on what he needed to write down. Yuuichirou had a habit of wanting to listen into conversations because of his difficulty to focus on one thing, so everyone constantly talking caused him to miss a lot of the information.

 

He could always go back over the books they went over and write down what he needed and didn't need to know. However, that would end up taking much more time than it was worth. If he had made himself focus more during class- if everyone else wasn’t talking- that wouldn’t be necessary.

 

Guren had also sent Yuuichirou on an errand run to purchase more coffee, thanks to Mikaela throwing what they had away, and other things like toiletries.

 

Shinoa and the other's added stress and their complaints for the day also kind of exhausted him. He was the type to listen to whatever they had to say and possibly try and offer advice, especially if it dealt with school.

 

Needless to say, Yuuichirou had had enough human interaction for today and he was ready to go home, copy what notes he needed, and take a nap.

 

When he got home, he ended up fiddling with the keys for a second to find the right one to unlock the door. Turning the knob once the key was in, Yuuichirou pushed opened the door and dropped his bookbag, then stepped inside.

 

Not even two steps inside and already Yuuichirou couldn't comprehend what was currently crawling and bounding all over his house.

 

It was a bunch of cats and kittens.

 

They were all meowing while some were playing and fighting with each other. The culprit laid in the middle of the living room, playing with some of them with his tail swaying idly back and forth.

 

"Mika..." He said, eyebrows drawn together in a 'is this really happening?' type of look.

 

Mikaela flinched, his eyes jerking up to focus on Yuuichirou, who had just gotten home.

 

Mikaela hadn’t thought of an excuse for this yet. He was so absorbed in his time with the adorable earthen creatures that he didn’t even try to think of a way to get them out of the house.

 

“Uh…” Mikaela swallowed, his eyes monetarily detouring to glance at one baby cat- he read they were called ‘kittens’- pawed at his tail. Mikaela flicked it lightly to keep the kitten entertained. “I… collected them. For study of Earth’s other species. I noticed a particular cluster of them alone in between buildings, and once two of them started following me, they all did. I felt some sort of pull, like I was a chosen one, a leader for them to obey… so I allowed them inside with me.”

 

Mikaela finished his explanation with an apologetic smile. “They’re so friendly, Yuu-chan! And soft…!” He looked down at one cat that was climbing onto his lap, its eyes narrowed as it sniffed Mikaela’s cheek. Mikaela lifted a hand to pet the cat on its head. He felt his nose itch with the beginning of a sneeze, but he held it back for the sake of the cat. The cat’s eyes closed and it rumbled softly, which Mikaela learned was a sound of contentment.

 

He loved them. He had only just begun to learn about cats, but they were already his favorite earth creature- aside from humans, of course. Suddenly Mikaela sneezed and a couple of the cats flinched with surprise.

 

"Mika, you can't..." Yuuichirou trailed off. He didn't even know what to say. There were so many cats in his house, it would take ages to clean and vacuum the fur left everywhere. Not to mention he could hear cats clawing at the carpets and the couch and other things.

 

"Oh my god..." He breathed out, bringing his hands up to his face. "Chosen one or not, I need you to get these cats out of my house.” He whispered to himself, “Guren is going to flip."

 

The cats were definitely cute, but there was just too many for it to be okay. Two cats would've been fine, not the cat version of 101 Dalmations.

 

Mikaela laughed nervously, not wanting to upset the humans any more. His tail flicked from side to side, and then suddenly, he was sneezing again, over and over.

 

“Allergies…” Mikaela muttered out loud, sulking at his own reaction. It just wasn’t fair! He loved these cats, but they evoked a bad reaction from his body… Mikaela sighed and rubbed at his nose.

 

He didn’t quite want to give up his collection of animals, however. Mikaela looked to Yuuichirou sadly. “Do we have to get rid of all of them…?” He asked pitifully, his tail drooping and flopping against the floor.

 

Yuuichirou winced at how Mikaela was sneezing.

 

"If you're reacting to them like that, I don't think it's a good idea to keep any of them..." He said slowly. He bent down and picked one up that was rubbing against his leg. "We have to get them out of here, Mika." He scolded lightly.

 

Guren was going to be home soon, too. Yuuichirou knew they were probably going to miss a few stray kittens, and that they were most likely going to be caught with a couple cats.

 

"I wonder if I have anything that'll help your allergies, though..." Yuuichirou mused to himself.

 

Mikaela’s eyes shone with wonder. “Do humans have any herbs or medication to prevent allergies?” He asked, incredibly excited as the thought. He was clutching a small gray kitten in his arms. He sniffled loudly and his eyes were pinkish from how itchy they were, but a grin was spread across his face. “We are working on creating such a medication on Iridýon, but we haven’t made much progress.”

 

Maybe with an example of an allergy-preventer on Earth, they could try and find something similar with Iridýon’s minerals and elements. Mikaela stood up with excitement. “Please show me if you have anything like that, Yuu-chan!”

 

Yuuichirou was a bit surprised. It seemed Mikaela's people were only advanced in technology and not medicine.

 

"So you guys... just deal with the sneezing and not being able to breathe...?" He asked skeptically. Holding the cat close to his chest, Yuuichirou moved into the kitchen while shaking his head.

 

He wasn't sure if it would work all that well on Mikaela's species. It might even be harmful...

 

Maybe I shouldn't give him any kind of medicine... Yuuichirou thought in worry. He shook his head and reached up into one of the pantries to pull out a bottle full of pulls Guren used because of pollen in the summer. It was worth a shot.

 

Walking back to the living room, Yuuichiriu handed Mikaela the bottle. "Only take one, I don't know how your body functions,” he warned.

 

Mikaela’s tail swished from side to side as he examined the bottle in his hand. He was able to open it (after a few failed attempts) and dump one pill onto his hand. It was incredibly tiny and to be consumed by mouth. Mikaela knew that water would help, so he left momentarily to get a glass.

 

Before he took the pill he examined its ingredients, then peeled the label off the bottle and stored it in a small pouch on his belt. He could use the information, certainly.

 

Mikaela assumed it would be safe; after all, it seemed that Foteinós and humans were not incredibly different, not to mention Mikaela had been surviving off of Earthen nutrients since his arrival and felt perfectly healthy.

 

After taking the pill, he returned to Yuuichirou, a smile on his face. “Thank you, Yuu-chan!” He handed Yuuichirou the bottle and turned back to the cats. With a small sigh, he said softly, “We have to get rid of all of them now…?”

 

Yuuichirou offered him an apologetic smile. "Sorry, but we just don't have the means to take care of so many cats, and I’m sure a few have peed on the carpet already..." He pressed his lips together, looking at one kitten who was scratching at the carpet and sniffing the area.

 

He sighed. "Come on, there's a shelter we can bring them to; they'll take care of them." He promised.

 

Yuuichirou knelt down and gathered a few more cats, wincing as he was clawed at. He hissed at one particular scratch and hurried the cats outside. "Well... we can't bring all of them, some are too feral..."

 

He examined the bleeding scratches and kinda shrugged to himself. "We have to hurry, though."

 

Mikaela was distracted with playing with two kittens that he didn’t notice Yuuichirou getting scratched. What had the human done to upset the cats so much?

 

“Now, don’t do that,” Mikaela consoled to the cats, looking at all of them with critical stares. “Follow me, please.”

 

The cats that were hissing and scratching at Yuuichirou before all dutifully followed Mikaela’s lead out the door. Once all were outside, they sat down around Mikaela, looking at him with curious eyes.

 

“You may visit, but not stay!” Mikaela said, as if they would understand him. But these creatures were smart- Mikaela knew his meaning got across to them. The cats all slowly dispersed after rubbing themselves along Mikaela’s legs and purring. Mikaela waved goodbye to them after they were all out of sight.

 

He was absolutely perplexed. It was like Mikaela had an army of cats ready to heed every command Mikaela might give them. Yuuichirou sighed, rubbing at the scratches because they itched more than they hurt.

 

Mikaela turned back to Yuuichirou, “Yuu-chan! I’ve stopped sneezing, how is this possible? The medication works!” He then noticed Yuuichirou’s cuts, his eyes widening considerably. “Oh no, uhm… may I… heal you, Yuu-chan?” He asked, a bit shyly this time since now he knew more about what kissing meant for humans.

 

"I'm glad the pills worked..." He trailed off, thinking about Mikaela's question. He had scratches on his neck and shoulders, a few on his arms, too. He didn’t think he could handle Mikaela getting that close.

 

"They... aren't bad, but maybe the ones on my arms?" He shrugged a little, pulling his shirt up to cover his throat. Thinking about Mikaela's lips on his neck wasn't healthy.

 

"Honestly, I can just put some medicine on it..."

 

Mikaela shook his head. “Your medication would not heal nearly as quickly as my method.” The scent of human blood was different than Foteinós blood, but both substances were strong and jarring. They irritated Mikaela’s instincts, making him anxious and filled with an urge to help. The Foteinós sensitivity to injuries was due to their extraordinary healing abilities via their lips and saliva.

 

Mikaela stepped closer, gently lifting Yuuichirou’s arms. “Please, let me help you…” he murmured, then closed his eyes as he began to press gentle kisses along the cuts on Yuuichirou’s arms. He made his way up until he was tugging aside Yuuichirou’s shirt to kiss at the claw marks on his shoulders.

 

Slowly, he made his way to Yuuichirou’s neck.

 

"W-Wait, Mika..." Yuuichirou's face burned. He flinched slightly every time Mikaela got a bit closer to his neck. It was ticklish and it made him feel funny and a little warm.

 

"Mika, stop, it's fine," he breathed out a nervous laugh. "It would at least take the pain away, though I do... a-appreciate it, I-...!" Yuuichirou sucked in a breath, feeling Mikaela's lips on his neck. His fingers curled into fists and his froze.

 

He felt like he was going to faint. He realized Mikaela was only trying to help but Yuuichirou wasn't used to this, whether it was romantic, heated, or just a way to heal the scratches.

 

Mikaela continued on, not taking Yuuichirou’s words seriously. He just wanted Yuuichirou to stop feeling pain. Plus, Yuuichirou smelled quite nice, and his skin was soft… Mikaela’s tail drifted gently in the air with contentment. He reached up, tenderly kissing the soft spot with a scratch right underneath Yuuichirou’s jaw.

 

Yuuichirou was so warm, so…

 

“Whatever is going on here is gonna have to continue in private,” an unamused voice interrupted the comfortable silence of their moment. Mikaela blinked his eyes open, now pulling away from Yuuichirou’s neck to look at Guren, slightly peeved at the rude interruption.

 

Yuuichirou nearly screamed out loud; he was already screaming internally, at least. His neck felt tingly and part of him wanted Mikaela to continue. However, another part of him was grateful for the interruption.

 

"I... this isn't anything like what you're thinking about, Guren!" Yuuichirou said nervously, stepping back from the blond. "His kisses heal things, and I... had scratches there and... okay, yeah it just sounds like an elaborate excuse, but it's not like that!"

 

His body felt like it was buzzing and it was a bit too warm. He just hoped nothing started to react to the feeling. Yuuichirou really wished Mikaela understood personal space a little better.

 

"Not what it looks like, huh...?" Guren raised a brow. "I won't say anything but if you continue, please take it to your room." He shut the door behind him, shrugging as he walked away.

 

"It's not going to continue," Yuuichirou glared slightly at Guren. He tried to ignore how hard his heart was pounding.

 

Mikaela hummed to himself, his eyes trailing along Yuuichirou’s neck inquisitively. There seemed to be no scratches left, and Mikaela’s anxiety was gone. Still, he was itching with a different type of feeling, his heart fluttering with a mixture of curiosity and something else.

 

He wondered why Yuuichirou smelled so nice. Mikaela had sniffed other humans, but none were as appealing as Yuuichirou. He could think about it later. For now, he just smiled slyly at Yuuichirou and said, “At least he doesn’t know about the cats.”

 

 

A few lazy days later, Mikaela wandered back into Yuuichirou’s room and saw him munching on something perfectly rectangular. Mikaela’s tail shot straight out in attention. He rushed over to Yuuichirou, pointing at the object sternly.

 

“Yuu-chan, that doesn’t look natural! It looks unhealthy!” Mikaela scolded, his eyes narrowing at the food. “It’s too perfectly shaped to be normal. Don’t eat it!”

 

Yuuichirou narrowed his eyes at Mikaela as he took another piece of chocolate into his mouth. "Are you telling me... that I need to stop eating chocolate?" He asked, threateningly. He ate another one, chewing this one slowly to savor the flavor before swallowing. Yuuichirou pushed himself up and stood in front of Mikaela.

 

"Try one, it's good." He offered, a brow raised. "They say it helps you live longer."

 

He was becoming tired of Mikaela telling him what he could and could not eat. It was time to coax him to the unhealthy side and he was going to do it with this small piece of heavenly coated cocoa.

 

"Come on, Mika."

 

Mikaela squinted his eyes more, still skeptical of the food. It didn’t _look_ helpful, or like it would make him live longer.

 

But… maybe he should trust Yuuichirou. He was the expert on Earth culture and foods, after all. Mikaela picked the piece with his fingers daintily, as if he would be tainted by the substance.

 

He brought it closer to his nose, where he sniffed it. It smelled sweet, and actually quite good, but Mikaela didn’t want to be deceived by it. What if its tempting scent was covering up something incredibly dangerous?

 

Finally, Mikaela caved in. He bit into the piece slowly and chewed it. The food was melting in his mouth, and the sweetness pleased his tongue.

 

It was delicious.

 

Mikaela’s eyes rounded and he stared at the rest of it in Yuuichirou’s hand. “Ne, Yuu-chan, give me more,” he demanded softly, reaching out to try and steal more from him.

 

Yuuichirou snorted to himself when Mikaela asked for more. He handed the rest of the chocolate bar to the blue alien. "You can have it, I have more." He assured. "It’s called chocolate. Just don't eat too much or you'll get a stomach ache." He smirked and stepped away from Mikaela, plopping back into his chair and spinning around in it.

 

"Some things may be unhealthy, but it's nice to indulge once in awhile." He said. "Just don't go to America and you'll be fine." He laughed.

 

Mikaela snatched the chocolate from him quickly, downing it with only a few bites. The sheer speed that he ate the chocolate with was alarming to probably any human, but Mikaela didn’t want to wait.

 

With shining eyes, he rushed back to Yuuichirou again, getting right up in his face. “Is there more? Yuu-chan, you said you have more!” Mikaela gripped his shoulders, his tail flicking side to side rapidly. He totally disregarded Yuuichirou’s warning of a stomachache. “Yuu-chan!”

 

He suddenly caught a whiff of the chocolate coming from Yuuichirou’s lips. He darted closer, their lips almost brushing as he tried to sniff at Yuuichirou’s lips.

 

"Woah!" Yuuichirou pushed Mikaela back and frowned. A blush dusted over his face. "Calm down, it’s... you're not allowed to eat it anymore if you don't chill out a bit." He slowly moved his hands away from Mikaela and ran a hand through his hair.

 

"You nearly gave me a heart attack just now," he laughed. "I'll give you another after supper, okay?" He settled back into his chair, relaxing. Having their lips brush caused a spark within his chest but he paid no mind to it and completely ignored it.

 

Mikaela sat back reluctantly, still focused slightly on Yuuichirou’s lips. “Okay…” he agreed slowly, and willed himself to calm down from the chocolate high.

 

When supper was over, Mikaela noticed something very wrong about Guren’s drink.

 

It was that coffee stuff! Mikaela snatched it and dumped it down the drain. Guren was turned away from his mug, and when he went to take a sip, he gawked at the realization that it was empty.

 

“What the hell!?” Guren glared at Yuuichirou instead of Mikaela. “Control your goddamn alien, Yuu!”

 

Yuuichirou frowned. He hated being yelled at and he had to keep himself from saying something back. He didn't feel like arguing.

 

He didn't say anything to Mikaela either. He just continued eating the food he had grabbed for seconds. Yuuichirou kept his gaze down as Guren shoved himself up and moved to get himself a new cup of coffee.

 

"He's just going to dump it out again..." Yuuichirou murmured, resting his head against his hand that was propped up.

 

"Mika," he finally said after a moment. "You can't throw people’s things away, unhealthy or not." He lifted his eyes up towards the blond.

 

Mikaela squinted at both Yuuichirou and Guren. His tail flicked irritably.

 

“It’s not good for you humans,” he argued stubbornly. “It’s bad! Don’t drink it.” He refused to budge from his standpoint. He didn’t trust the things that were melted within that drink were in any way safe or beneficial. That stuff kept Yuuichirou and Guren awake when they were clearly too tired to be! Instead, they should just sleep to regain their energy, not use fake means of doing so.

 

Mikaela glared as Guren poured more of the coffee into his mug. Guren glared back at him.

 

“I’ll drink my coffee, whether you approve or not,” Guren grumbled.

 

Mikaela’s tail lashed angrily. “It’s bad for you.”

 

"So is chocolate, yet you've been eating it," Yuuichirou responded quietly. He closed his eyes and sighed through his nose. His plate was nearly clean but he was still scrapping his fork against the plate, even if the sound was annoying.

 

"You can't be hypocritical, Mika... coffee helps him stay awake during work. It helps people when we need to get things done." He explained. "It's just a bit if a boost, really, we don't consume it that often."

 

Guren sipped at his coffee, continuing to glare at Mikaela. Yuuichirou shook his head and dropped his fork onto the plate.

 

"Besides, you're both being too mean to each other." He scolded, looking up at them as he turned around in his chair.

 

Mikaela huffed, sticking his nose up in the air. “I don’t agree with the coffee,” he insisted. Then, not knowing what else to say but nevertheless feeling irritable, he left the room.

 

It wasn’t until after he left the room that he realized he didn’t know what he was doing. Today was a weekend day and so Yuuichirou didn’t have to go to university, which meant Mikaela didn’t go, either. He was sort of sad about it, since he did enjoy meeting new people and learning about humans, but it wasn’t his choice.

 

He should go check up on his ship inside the garage, he thought. With a decisive flick of his tail, Mikaela went to the garage and slipped inside.

 

He powered on his ship to make sure the engine was still running smoothly and that nothing bad had happened to it while it was dormant on earth. So far, so good, Mikaela noticed as he checked the ship’s vital functions.

 

Mikaela figured his check-up was complete, and he went inside the ship to power it down…

 

...until he noticed the screen. His eyes slitted and widened as cold fear trickled through his veins.

 

There were various alert signals of a nearby Foteinós ship. And Mikaela knew exactly who it could be.

 

 

Yuuichirou watched Mikaela leave the room, brows knitted together. He seemed a bit grumpy today, maybe Mikaela was just having an off day? He pursed his lips together and stood up to gather his empty dishes.

 

Pushing the chair in with his foot, hopping a bit, he soon walked into the kitchen. All the other dishes had been washed, it was only fair that he washed his own. Turning on the water, Yuuichirou grabbed dish soap and a sponge.

 

Guren stood silently beside him, sipping his coffee as he stared at the garage door.

 

"I don't think scolding him is best, he's new to this planet." Yuuichirou said, keeping his voice down.

 

"New or not, he should know to have some kind of manners," Guren retorted.

 

"At least he cares enough to worry about your health," Yuuichirou snapped a bit before closing his eyes and counting to ten. He shut the water off and left the now clean dishes in the sink.

 

He left Guren staring after him as he moved to open the garage door. Seeing the ship hovering, Yuuichirou cautiously stepped into the room.

 

"Mika?"

 

Mikaela whipped around quickly, his eyes wide as he noticed Yuuichirou. He turned back to his controls, rapidly tapping along the screens and zooming in on various reports and statistics. He didn’t think to respond until Yuuichirou repeated his name.

 

“Mika,” he said, his eyes narrowing.

 

“Sorry, Yuu-chan…” Mikaela murmured, his nail nervously swishing as he glanced around his controls. “I’m… having a bit of a hard time.”

 

How was he supposed to explain? Maybe he should just be honest. Mikaela sucked in a tense breath. “Some others from my planet are chasing me.” He turned a worried look to Yuuichirou. “I’m sorry if I ever lied to you, Yuu-chan… but I was never supposed to leave my planet in the first place. I’m being chased down.”

 

"Chased...?" Yuuichirou whispered before falling silent. It made him think Mikaela was some kind of criminal or something when he said he wasn't supposed to have left.

 

Yuuichirou brought a hand up to his face and shook his head. "So-... so what does that mean?" He asked, wanting clarification as he threw his hand up, brows raised. He walked over to Mikaela and into his ship.

 

"You can't just leave," He said, grabbing onto Mikaela's arm. "It's just going to be a never ending cycle if you leave and I-..." he paused. "I can't let myself watch you leave and you're not allowed to think about it, either." His voice was stern. "You can't leave me here."

 

Mikaela sucked in a tense breath, his eyes widening at Yuuichirou’s idea.

 

For a human to come with him…?

 

Mikaela thought it over. Maybe, if he brought Yuuichirou with him, the Foteinós people would finally open their eyes and see there is other intelligent life out there. That they could coexist with others and learn from each other.

 

Mikaela recalled the allergy medication. They could help each other- that’s what Mikaela believed Foteinós were meant to do; to learn from other intelligent species. Clearly, it was built into their DNA with their abilities to learn languages so easily. Mikaela thought that maybe, bringing a human could further prove his point.

 

But… what if Yuuichioru wasn’t adapted to survive on other plants, like Mikaela was? Mikaela was sure his species was made for long distance travel and survival in unfamiliar environments, since he could eat Earth food and breathe Earth’s atmosphere.

 

But if Yuuichirou wasn’t built for that, he could perish as soon as he walked out of the ship and set food on Iridýon.

 

Mikaela shook his head regretfully. “It’s too risky, Yuu-chan… I can’t get you mixed in with these people. It’s dangerous.”

 

Yuuichirou’s heart dropped a bit and he quickly shook his head, pulling Mikaela away from the screens.

 

"Then you're not leaving, I can't let you," his breath shuddered. He was becoming more emotional than he thought he would get. He didn't realize how quickly he had grown attached to Mikaela until now. Yuuichirou didn't think he'd care if Mikaela left.

 

Seems he's proven himself wrong.

 

"I'll get Guren to stop yelling at you, I'll make sure no one finds you, please..." Yuuichirou tried, his eyes watering slightly.

 

Mikaela whimpered, now vocalizing all of his worries. “But Yuu-chan…! I don’t know if you humans can survive out in space. Out on my planet… I don’t know. I believe my species was made for foreign environments. We can survive on the essential nutrients and minerals from most planets. But… humans might be more delicate.”

 

Mikaela bit his lip, feeling Yuuichirou’s grip on his arms tighten. “What if… what if you step outside my ship and can’t breathe? What if you die right there and there’s nothing I can do to save you?” Mikaela whispered hoarsely. “I can’t risk killing you all because of my own troubles…”

 

His tail drooped low to the ground. “I don’t want to say goodbye, Yuu-chan, but I don’t want to put you or any of the humans in danger of these people… Ferid and Crowley… who knows what they’ll do.”

 

Yuuichirou opened his mouth to say something but closed it again. He didn't know what to say. He wanted to risk it; at least, a part of him was worried for the things Mikaela explained to him.

 

He stared at Mikaela, gripping his arm impossibly tight. He pulled Mikaela close and hugged him, tucking his head into the alien’s chest. Yuuichirou closed his eyes.

 

"I'd be stupid enough to risk it, but I guess I have no say." He said quietly. He understood Mikaela's worries. At the same time, he tried to find an excuse.

 

".. I'm not leaving this ship."

 

Yuuichirou pulled away. He wouldn't admit that his eyes were teary even though he could feel it.

 

Mikaela’s throat tightened upon seeing a shine of tears across Yuuichirou’s face.

 

Crying… was something that both Foteinós and humans did. Though Mikaela had never seen a human cry- he had never seen Yuuichirou cry. The first thing he noticed was how beautiful he was, how his green eyes were impossibly greener as he got teary.

 

Mikaela’s heart was twisting and pounding in the strangest way. He knew it was dangerous for Yuuichirou, and he didn’t want to let Yuuichirou come with. But here he was, holding onto Mikaela with a glaze of tears over his eyes, his face flushed lightly as he refused to leave his side.

 

Mikaela’s lips parted. He sucked in a soft breath, a sudden urge welling up inside of him, an urge he didn’t know he could feel. It was an urge he had felt before in small bursts, but not nearly this strong. He felt like his heart was swelling, buzzing with an insatiable feeling that there was only one solution for.

 

Mikaela pulled Yuuichirou closer to him and tilted his head, not understanding what came over him or why. He just knew he needed this.

 

"Wait-..." Yuuichirou tried when he noticed Mikaela leaning in.

 

Mikaela didn’t think as he pressed their lips together, as a shiver rolled down his spine and made his tail curve.

 

Yuuichirou’s eyes widened slightly upon feeling Mikaela's lips against his own. He wasn't physically hurt, he didn't fully understand why Mikaela decided to kiss him. It didn't stop the spark running through his body and he felt the need to cling back to Mikaela.

 

Mikaela was confusing. Yuuichirou felt a thread of guilt when he let himself wrap his arms around Mikaela's shoulders and his eyes close. He pressed back into the kiss a little, returning it.

 

He was kissing an alien. One who he didn't think fully knew what kissing was for humans.

 

Yuuichirou faltered after another second and placed a hand on Mikaela's chest, gently pushing him back. Yuuichirou ducked his head down, looking at the floor as he nervously licked his lips.

 

"I didn't mean to... to do that... I just don't..." Yuuichirou breathed for a moment. "I don't want you to leave me here, I still wanted to show you a lot of things and teach you about our culture..." he murmured, almost pouting.

 

Mikaela’s tail was swishing from side to side now, his eyes were soft with affection and he felt an odd fluttering sensation in his chest. He wasn’t sure what he was feeling, but he wanted to do that again sometime. Yuuichirou was… so incredibly cute, Mikaela felt like his heart was melting.

 

He always thought Yuuichirou was cute, but now feeling his fingers curl lightly against his clothes, Mikaela smiled a little.

 

“I need to get my suit back on,” Mikaela said, feeling himself cave in to Yuuichirou, despite his worries. “And you should bring a few things you may need. I’m terrified, but… if you step out of the ship and can’t breathe, I’ll push you inside again and take you right back home. I don’t want anything to happen to you.”

 

Yuuichirou perked up, stepping back and looking at him in slightly shock.

 

Mikaela was letting him go.

 

He had never even been inside of a spaceship until just now, and now he was going into space.

 

The sheer excitement of witnessing it himself rather than reading it from books had a grin pulling over his face. On top of that, Mikaela wasn't going to just up and leave him. If it was a mere move, Yuuichirou wouldn't mind, but the possibility of not seeing Mikaela again in the vast expanse of the universe kind of hurt.

 

"I'll be... fine, as long as there’s enough oxygen, even if it’s thin, I'll be okay,” he assured. "I'll just feel light headed and won't be able to run until I get used to it!" Yuuichirou shrugged before darting out of the ship.

 

He paused at the door. "...I'm not telling Guren, so don't mention anything when you go back inside, I don't need to argue with him." He glanced back at Mikaela before rushing inside after that.

 

He was no longer thinking about the kiss they shared. At least, not at the moment.

 

"What... what am I bringing...?" Yuuichirou asked himself. He ran a hand through his hair. He had no idea how to pack for a space trip.

 

Meanwhile, Mikaela grabbed his suit and changed into it quickly, then continued to search the maps.

 

It was the best tactic to go back to Iridýon. That way, Ferid and Crowley would just be arriving at Earth and upon not finding any signal from Mikaela, maybe they would be sidetracked and go search other plants before returning to Iridýon.

 

Mikaela would take the opportunity to gather any more materials he needed. He would likely have to stop by Earth again to bring Yuuichirou home (by then, he was sure Ferid and Crowley would be on his tail again, but still just too far behind) and then Mikaela could go to a different planet.

 

He would always be chased, but if he kept going from planet to planet, it was likely Ferid and Crowley wouldn’t catch up to him.

 

Mikaela began shifting the gears in his ship, pressing multiple commands and buttons inside to prepare it for take-off. He licked his lips and narrowed his eyes at the screens, setting his destination as Iridýon and planning for a hyper warp drive.

 

Yuuichirou gathered a few spare clothes- whatever he could grab. The climate and weather was probably going to be a definite change on another planet so he wasn’t sure what he should pack. Maybe he should've asked Mikaela first.

 

"Damn..." Yuuichirou looked at his computer. Maybe he should text Shinoa to copy any notes he might miss while he's gone.

 

He would just ignore her if she asked where he was going.

 

Better safe than sorry.

 

Yuuichirou took a quick moment to text Shinoa before running down stairs and back into the garage. He didn't see Guren on the way; he probably left for work.

 

"Okay, I'm ready." Yuuichirou said.

 

Mikaela nodded, knowing the ship was ready and so was he. “Alright, get in.” Yuuichirou stepped inside and Mikaela commanded the door to close. It sealed shut and after that, Mikaela activated the anti-gravity inside the ship.

 

He knew this would all be a crazy change for Yuuichirou to handle, but he’d have to get to used to all the weird quirks that came with traveling in space as well as exploring a new planet.

 

“You might want to hold onto something, Yuu-chan,” Mikaela teased, his tail flicking back and forth. “We’ll be going pretty fast.”

 

"Wait, you don't have seats?!" Yuuichirou hissed out. He was already a little off balance because there was no gravity holding him down- even his bag was floating away from him.

 

"Please don't crash my garage..." He whined, swimming through the air over to Mikaela and grabbing onto his arm. Still, it was all fascinating to him. He had a feeling, however, that this was going to be the worst 'rollercoaster' ride ever.

 

"You're crazy,” Yuuichirou breathed.

 

Mikaela grinned as they exited the garage, floating above the driveway momentarily as Mikaela prepared to propel himself through Earth’s atmosphere. The engine’s sound raised to a higher and higher pitch as the energy increased.

 

He thought it was quite cute how Yuuichirou was clinging to his arm, and he didn’t bother to shake him off, even if he had the strength to do so.

 

Plus, it was safer than letting Yuuichirou richochet all around the cabin of the ship. Mikaela’s tail reached up, settling around Yuuichirou’s body protectively.

 

“Hold on tight, Yuu-chan!” Mikaela said gleefully, feeling excitement course through his veins even though he was running away from some of the most dangerous members of the Foteinós government. Flying through space was exhilarating, no matter the reason- plus, the first time Mikaela ever did it, he was running from Ferid and Crowley anyways.

 

Mikaela tapped a few more commands onto his screen, and then the ship tilted itself and rocketed up into the sky at an astonishing speed.

 

Yuuichirou's heart dropped and he couldn't breathe for a moment. His hold on Mikaela tightened and the tail around his waist made him feel just a tad safer, but not much. He thought he was going to puke from the speed, but he pushed it down and tucked his head into Mikaela's shoulder.

 

"Why did you let me do this?!" He cried out. He was pretty sure his ears popped multiple times, but that was the least of his worries.

 

Mikaela only laughed and said, “It was your idea, Yuu-chan!”

 

The ship zoomed through the sky and above earth, rocketing into space at an unimaginable speed. Mikaela pressed in the commands onto his screens, and then the hyper warp drive was activated.

 

“Here we go…!” Mikaela said out loud, smiling as Yuuichirou squeezed him tighter.

 

Space opened up for them and propelled them an inconceivable distance.

Chapter Text

When all movement ceased abruptly, Yuuichirou felt relief until his throat began to close up with the feeling of nearly vomiting. He pushed it down and took in slow deep breaths to calm himself and his body.

 

When the urge died down, Yuuichirou gradually lifted his head. His breathing nearly stopped.

 

It was a completely different star system. That was the first thing he noticed. Yuuichirou reached down and slipped Mikaela's tail from around him so he could float over towards the windows. Beautiful hues of blue and pink in gathered star clusters close enough to be seen. He looked away from the stars and towards the rather large planet they were heading too.

 

It looked cold and it was probably so large that it took longer for the planet to rotate a 'day' for them. Their sun, or Orb, seemed a bit smaller than his own, but Mikaela’s planet had many moons.

 

"It looks cold..." Yuuichirou said absently. He was in awe.

 

He didn't think he could ever witness another planet sustaining life, much less, in person.

 

"Do you guys get enough sunlight?" He glanced back at Mikaela.

 

Mikaela hummed thoughtfully as they slowly flew towards Iridýon. “There’s not much on there, it’s another reason why we Foteinós glow,” Mikaela pointed out. “But there’s enough for plant life.”

 

Mikaela’s eyes scanned their surroundings. “Do you see that one, Yuu-chan?” Mikaela nodded towards their largest moon, colored a gorgeous light blue. “It’s called φύλακας… ah, how would I say that to you… uhm, something like Fýlakas. It means ‘Guardian,’ to humans,” Mikaela tried to decipher the meaning of the moon to Yuuchirou. “And if you look to that one…” Mikaela focused on a moderately sized scarlet moon, “it is called πολεμιστής, or, uh… Polemistís. It means ‘Warrior.’”

 

Mikaela looked in the other direction, his tail flicking. “You can’t see it well from this angle, but the smallest moon is called Τύχη, or… Týchi. It means ‘Luck.’ If you can see Týchi, which only happens once in a while, it’s tradition to make a wish and may good luck come your way.”

 

Mikaela smiled brightly. “And you can’t see πίστη… erm, Písti from here, but that one is the one that glows the brightest. It means ‘Faith.’ It takes in the Sfaíra’s light and reflects it upon Iridýon when Sfaíra isn’t shining on us.”

 

Their ship had now fallen into Iridýon’s orbit, so Mikaela adjusted the controls, waiting until they were just the right distance above his home to make a landing and cut through Iridýon’s atmosphere.

 

"... It's kinda neat that you can translate it into what sounds something like Greek, and then Japanese..." Yuuichirou mentioned, turning away from the window and moving closer to Mikaela. "But it's good that one of the moons provide light, or some of it. That's probably how the plants can perform photosynthesis, honestly..." He pursed his lips together. "It would make sense that your species is bioluminescent..." He didn't know why he thought Mikaela's planet would be brighter. "How cold does it get?"

 

Mikaela hummed. “Pretty cold… much colder than Earth during your summer. Though I have not experienced your winter…” Mikaela wondered. He glanced to Yuuichirou’s earthen clothing with slight worry. The suits that the Foteinós wore are specifically designed to regulate their body temperature. Yuuichirou’s cotton shirts and pants wouldn’t cut it.

 

“The first thing I’ll do is go to Lacus and get you a suit,” Mikaela said to Yuuichirou. “He’s a clothing designer near my home. He always has plenty of suits for purchase at any time. He could make you a custom-fit one if you need it later.” Mikaela knew if Yuuichirou didn’t wear the suit, he could potentially become sick during his stay, and Mikaela didn’t want that with the Foteinós’s lack of advanced medication.

 

The Foteinós didn’t get sick often, and when they did, they were healed by their own kind or with the plants on the planet. But when it came to things like allergies and small illnesses, they sort of just dealt with it.

 

For this reason, Mikaela was very excited to introduce allergy medicine to his people.

 

"Fashion designers, huh...? One more thing Earth has in common..." Yuuichirou whispered. He moved and clung onto Mikaela's arm again just in case.

 

“Ah, we’re getting close…” Mikaela murmured as the ship descended further, bringing the houses and buildings into closer view. Mikaela could see the domed tops of trees, colored lavender and glimmering in the faint light of Sfaíra.

 

"It's... pretty,” Yuuichirou murmured. He felt it was prettier, more than Earth. "Your buildings are mostly domes, why?" He glanced up at Mikaela in wonder before looking back down. "Probably more sound than the towers we build." He hummed.

 

He was a little nervous. Yuuichirou was far, far from Earth and he didn't know what it would be like around a completely different race than humans.

 

“They’re economically friendly,” Mikaela informed him, regarding the buildings. “The trees here are dome-like, so we mimic the structure of the trees to provide dark, cool shade for plants to grow around them. Those plants do us favors as well, like heal us, feed us and keep the soil around our houses healthy.”

 

Mikaela shifted and angled the ship downwards. He announced to Yuuichirou, “We’re descending now!”

 

The ship shook a bit more as it went faster, head-first down at one particular location. Mikaela dove underneath some red, stony archways, hovering just above a crystalline blue river that trickled over the blueish-green grass. It was the same place he zipped through on his escape out of Iridýon.

 

After he passed through it, he circled about a particular dome, hovering as the ground suddenly opened up to take the ship within. It opened automatically due to a censor in the base of the ship, allowing Mikaela to settle within.

 

Yuuichirou's grip tightened onto Mikaela's arm at the shakiness. He felt a bit woozy from the ride, but he focused on his breathing to ease the feeling. Instead, he focused on their surroundings outside of the ship.

 

They were definitely a lot more caring about their planet than humans were. It was a bit inspiring, but he didn't think he could motivate 6.5 million people to take care of their surroundings. It was kind of upsetting.

 

"Is that why you crashed into my house?" Yuuichirou said suddenly. "Because you thought it would open up for you?" He pulled away from Mikaela and quirked a brow at him. He looked a little amused. "Your planet is very pretty, though..."

 

Mikaela laughed a little bashfully. “I didn’t know human technology wasn’t as advanced…!”

 

The ship landed at the base of the underground garage, and then the roof closed over it. Mikaela powered down the ship and both he and Yuuichirou were lightly placed onto their feet as gravity kicked in. Mikaela looked hesitantly at Yuuichirou as he opened the ship’s door.

 

Nothing happened yet. Mikaela stepped out of the ship and watched as Yuuichirou followed, his eyes fixed on Yuuichirou’s chest and face and making sure he could still breathe. It seemed there was enough oxygen here for Yuuichirou to be alright.

 

Mikaela released a heavy sigh of relief and he turned to look at the door. He jumped in surprise as he saw someone very familiar to him, looking a mixture of angry, relieved and worried.

 

“συγγνώμη,” Mikaela said he was sorry in their native tongue. The shorter, pink-skinned woman came over to Mikaela with a stubborn glare in her eyes.

 

Ανησύχησα, Μικαέλα !” She snapped. Mikaela flinched slightly, but he was glad to see her. Her eyes shifted to Yuuichirou. “ποιός είναι αυτος?”

 

“φιλε μου,” Mikaela murmured, his eyes soft as he glanced to Yuuichirou. Yuuichirou had his arms wrapped around himself with his bag over his shoulder. He wished he had brought a jacket; it really was cold.

 

“Δεν μας καταλαβαίνει.” Mikaela met Yuuichirou’s confused eyes. “Sorry, Yuu-chan!” He switched back to Japanese. “I told her you were a friend. This is Krul, the woman who raised me.”

 

Stepping out of the ship completely, Yuuichirou gave a nervous wave to Krul. "Hello...?" He tried, casting an unsure glance to Mikaela. As per respect, Yuuichirou bowed slightly as he greeted her. It was something taught within his culture.

 

He was surprised that the oxygen levels weren't too different from Earth's. The air was a bit thin, but he could manage. He couldn't begin to even point out vowels within Mikaela's language. It was too foreign from all the other languages he's heard before. It was true that it sounded somewhat like Greek, but anyone could tell Mikaela’s tongue was incredibly alien.

 

Krul scanned the foreign boy up and down, looking void of all expression. She strode forward to stand in front of him, then reached up on her tiptoes and cupped Yuuichirou’s face in her hands. She brought him down far enough to press their lips together.

 

Mikaela’s tail flicked irritably, but he watched as Krul pulled away. Yuuichirou looked dazed and flustered, which for some reason bothered Mikaela. He was only supposed to have that cute of an expression for him… right?

 

Mikaela shook his head quickly. He had to remember that human customs were different than his own. There was no need to get jealous over Yuuichirou’s reaction.

 

“Where are you from?” Krul asked, now speaking fluent Japanese. “You don’t look like one of our kind.”

 

Yuuichirou had to remind himself that kissing was completely different for them. It still didn't stop the blush forming over his face.

 

"Uhmm..." He hesitated before gathering himself. "Tokyo City, it’s a country called Japan... on planet Earth, in the Milky Way galaxy beside Andromeda." He smiled sheepishly, suppressing the shiver that wanted to surface. It was cold. "I could actually pinpoint the star system I came from, if... given a map, though your star system is completely different, it might take me some time..." He rambled. He was beginning to realize he was a bit too into space and science at this point. He didn't care.

 

His eyes widened at a thought. "What are your constellations and star system, no... what's your galaxy called?!" He asked in an excited breath.

 

Krul examined the alien, nodding along to his information. Andromeda wasn’t too far off from them, but still pretty distant. She said, “Our galaxy is called δίνη, or as your kind may hear it… Díni.”

 

“It’s something like… ‘vortex’ in Japanese,” Mikaela added with a smile. Krul looked back to him.

 

“He is not Foteinós, what is he?” She asked him.

 

“Aνθρώπινο ον,” Mikaela told her. “Human being.”

 

"Actually, Homosapien, but Human is fine..." Yuuichirou shrugged after speaking quietly. He chewed on his bottom lip before he sneezed. Covering his face with his jacket, he shivered. Going from warm air to cold suddenly messed with his sinuses.

 

Krul fixed her eyes back on Yuuichirou. “And his name?” She asked.

 

“Yuuichirou,” Mikaela answered. Krul nodded, then looked suddenly critical. She continued to speak in Japanese so Yuuichirou could understand what they were saying.

 

"You can call me Yuu, though." He smiled slightly. He was, admittedly, amazed to see Krul. She was really pretty and the fact that she also had white freckles was cool. Krul nodded, but focused her attention to Mikaela.

 

“Why would you bring an alien here?” She scolded Mikaela. “And where did you go, Mikaela? Can he even survive here? Why did you run away like that?” She narrowed her eyes. “You have a lot of explaining to do…”

 

Yuuichirou sneezed again. Krul paused to look at him. "I don't think I like how cold it is here," Yuuichirou admitted, sighing as he lowered his jacket back down. He sniffled.

 

“He needs a suit,” Mikaela answered softly. He scratched the back of his head. “And he should be fine.” He avoided the other questions for now.

 

Krul huffed. “Well, if he needs a suit, you should go straight to Lacus. And after that, you come home and tell me everything, Mikaela.”

 

Mikaela laughed nervously. “Alright… follow me, Yuu-chan.” Mikaela nodded to the doorway, where they went inside and were faced with a slope that had rounded ledges. Mikaela’s lips quirked a bit as he bounded up one of them easily due to the strength in his legs. When he landed, he looked down at Yuuichirou.

 

“This is the closest we have to ‘stairs,’” Mikaela laughed lightly. “Do you need help getting up?”

 

Yuuichirou frowned at him. He preferred going down slopes, not up them. He huffed and shook his head before running up the slope. He struggled a bit but, otherwise, he was fine.

 

"As long as you don't have steeper ones, I can get up them..." He murmured, then glanced to Mikaela. "She seems nice... really pretty, but all of you probably are..."

 

Mikaela tilted his head with a sly smile on his lips. He had learned a thing or two from being on earth for some time, and he picked up on what ‘flirting’ was, even if he didn’t grasp everything about love and romance completely.

 

Still, he hadn’t forgotten their kiss before they left earth, even if they had yet to talk about it. Mikaela knew he enjoyed it and was curious about feelings like romance and attraction.

 

“Are you saying I’m pretty, Yuu-chan?” Mikaela teased, his tail swaying from his amusement.

 

Yuuichirou blinked at him, not really catching on at first. "Of course...?" He scratched the back of his head with a frow, but then it hit him.

 

"O-oh..." Yuuichirou's face turned a light shade of pink. "If anything, you're kinda hot..." He shrugged before looking away. He brought his arms back around himself and let out a shaky breath. "It's really cold, my hands are becoming numb..."

 

He reached out and gently pushed at Mikaela. "Whatever this suit is, I need one, please."

 

Mikaela parted his lips to respond, but Yuuichirou had already changed the topic before he could react. Except… Mikaela’s skin glowed a light blue as he felt himself flush warm.

 

From what he remembered… being called hot was implying more romantic and sexual attraction than pretty. Mikaela gulped and tried to pull himself out of his embarrassment, but his heart fluttered quickly.

 

“R-Right, follow me,” Mikaela stammered and turned. Yuuichirou noticed Mikaela glowing and he paused for a second, but he didn't say anything about it and just followed Mikaela. Mikaela climbed the rest of the way until they emerged out into a small field of grass.

 

Yuuichirou immediately wanted to go back inside. It was almost frigid, yet the grass was healthy, and so were the rest of the plants. However, he was so cold and he was half tempted to huddle up next to Mikaela, but he refrained.

 

"How is there no ice here...?" He breathed. He thought he could see his breath.

 

Mikaela shrugged as they continued on. “There’s not as much morning dew here.” He inched closer to Yuuichirou, noticing how his human companion was shivering. He wrapped his tail around Yuuichirou’s waist and pulled him closer, then put his arm lightly around Yuuichirou’s upper back. He rested his hand on Yuuichirou’s shoulder.

 

Mikaela murmured, “We’re getting closer. Lacus lives very close to us. His house is the one up ahead.” He nodded to a domed building resting just ahead.

 

Yuuichirou appreciated the gesture but he ignored how it made his heart stutter. He was more focused on trying to stay warm than on some silly feelings he probably didn't really have. Still, Mikaela was warmer than the air outside.

 

"That's fair," Yuuichirou responded quietly. He still found himself looking around at their surroundings. It was beautiful. Beautifully cold, too. The cold made it hard for him to breathe, but he managed. Once he warmed up, he hoped he'd be okay.

 

Finally, they stood outside of Lacus’s door. Mikaela pressed a button on the door that was similar to doorbells on Earth. Lacus opened the door, his deep green eyes glinting at the sight of his friend.

 

“Μικαέλα !” He grinned, his lavender-tufted tail perking. “Τι σας φέρνει εδώ?”

 

“Ο φίλος μου χρειάζεται κοστούμι,” Mikaela answered, a small smile on his face as he nodded to Yuuichirou, who was shivering next to him. “Είναι από πολύ μακριά.”

 

Lacus stared at Yuuichirou, blinking with surprise. “Τι είναι αυτός?”

 

Aνθρώπινο ον,” Mikaela said. “Είναι παγώνει, μπορούμε να έρθουμε μέσα?”

 

“Βεβαίως!” Lacus exclaimed. He stepped aside and Mikaela ushered him in. The temperature was warmer within the domed house. Lacus grinned and inched next to Yuuichirou. “πως σε λένε?”

 

“Δεν μπορεί να καταλάβει,” Mikaela reminded him. Lacus’s eyes widened and he nodded.

 

“Λυπάμαι!” Lacus laughed, then tilted Yuuichirou’s chin up to kiss him directly. When he pulled away, he blinked and grinned, adapting to Japanese immediately. “Hello! So what is your name? Mikaela said you’re a human? So you’re like some kind of alien?”

 

Yuuichirou really wasn't going to get used to being kissed. It helped warm him up, though, considering his face burned from being kissed yet again. He knew it was just for instantly learning a language but he couldn't stop himself from becoming flustered.

 

He was, however, glad to be in a warmer area again. At least he wouldn't have to worry about freezing now.

 

"Uhm... I mean, a different species, most definitely... I guess I'm an alien," He laughed under his breath. "I'm Yuu... Amane Yuuichirou. Do... does everyone have to kiss me when I'm first introduced?" Yuuichirou asked, looking at Mikaela. "It's common to greet people by kissing both sides of the other person’s face in some countries on Earth, but all this kissing is..." Yuu stopped. He felt a little silly complaining about it.

 

Mikaela was beginning to understand Yuuichirou’s dislike of all the kissing. Mikaela was never bothered by it before, and he still wasn’t bothered because he was used to his own customs. But the tiniest part of him was irked whenever someone else kissed Yuuichirou.

 

He wanted to be the only one to make Yuuichirou so cute and red like he was now…

 

Mikaela stubbornly glared at the floor. Lacus confusedly tilted his head.

 

“Unless you want to hear nothing but gibberish, you’ll have to deal with it!” Lacus chuckled. Yuuichirou huffed before shaking his head.

 

“Anyways, Mikaela said you were cold earlier. You need a suit, I presume?” Lacus turned to lead the duo deeper into his home. “Lucky for you, I have a ton of spare suits of all sizes around here.”

 

"Anything is fine as long as I don't look ridiculous," Yuuichirou grumbled. His lips pursed together. "I'm not all that big, so medium or small might be my size." Especially compared to them, he added to himself.

 

Lacus tilted his head with a thoughtful hum. He looked Yuuichirou up and down before looking at how green his eyes were. Yuuichirou was then yanked over by his hand and further into the domed building.

 

"I think you'll like what I'm thinking of, but first, do you like showing bits of skin?" Lacus whipped around to face Yuuichirou with a grin. He motioned back to Mikaela. "Like how his sides are showing."

 

"Uh... no, no not really... but I'm okay with short sleeves if that's a thing?"

 

"Of course it is!" Lacus patted Yuuichirou's shoulder. Afterwards, Lacus disappeared into another room for a few minutes, leaving Yuuichirou there to fiddle with his shirt.

 

He had long stopped shivering. This building was pretty damn warm- well, warm enough.

 

Lacus emerged from the other room and handed Yuuichirou a suit and a pair of boots. He ushered him towards a room adjacent to the one Lacus had just left.

 

"Change in here, and do come out so I can see it!" Lacus clasped his hands together.

 

Yuuichirou nervously glanced back at Lacus and back into the room. It looked like a bathroom. Yuuichirou stepped inside and shut the door.

 

It took him a bit to figure out how to even put on the outfit, but as soon as he was dressed in the suit, he could breathe without it hurting his lungs. He was no longer cold; in fact, he was very comfortable.

 

The suit itself was kind of nice. One sleeve cut off at his bicep and the rest continued as a rather long glove, showing his fingers.

 

Green accents lined the suit and his... multiple belts. He didn't know why he needed more than one, but he supposed it was just how fashion worked. His boots were a darker greenish-grey color that stopped at his knees.

 

He still felt a little silly, though, even when he stepped out of the bathroom while holding his other clothes in hand.

 

Mikaela’s heart thudded his chest heavily.

 

Oh…

 

Mikaela’s tail twitched from side to side. His eyes were glued to Yuuichirou dressed in clothes that were fashionable here on his planet, which was a totally new sight. Whether or not Yuuichirou was incredibly attractive in his Earthen clothes was somewhat unknown to Mikaela; to him, Yuuichirou’s clothes always looked strange and foreign. He only focused on Yuuichirou’s natural features.

 

But now… now, Mikaela was paying attention to Yuuichirou’s body, seeing how the suit fit him snugly. Mikaela felt his skin heat and glow softly.

 

“Oh, you’re so embarrassed!” Lacus teased, then inched closer to Mikaela with a playfully waving tail. “Hey, Mikaela, is this Yuu your mate?”

 

Mikaela’s skin lit up so fast, he nearly flashed at Lacus. “Don’t assume something like that!” He snapped in defense.

 

Yuuichirou, instead of becoming red, started laughing. It started with his shoulders shaking before it bubbled up into an audible laugh. Mikaela always wondered about why Yuuichirou became red, so now it was funny to see Mikaela blushing for a change.

 

"That's…  that's cute..." Yuuichirou breathed out, a grin stretching over his face.

 

Lacus' tail flicked in interest as he looked at the human. "So you're not mates...?"

 

"No!" Yuuichirou shook his head. "I don't work that way, really... I mean, I do, but I’m not interested in... casually having sex right now." He set his clothing down to the side.

 

"That's interesting," Lacus murmured to himself. He shuffled closer to the young man. "So you... don't just have sex to repopulate?" He questioned.

 

"No... no, I..." Yuuichirou hesitated. "I'm interested in girls, but I have no desire for children right now."

 

Mikaela took in this information carefully. He glowed a little less now as his embarrassment died down, but he supposed that male humans would work the same as male Foteinós in that they could not reproduce together.

 

Same-sex Foteinós mates were not common, since most Foteinós just mated to produce children and then raised them. Otherwise, what was the purpose of being mates?

 

He knew from reading about romance that human mating was different. They based their mating habits around complex feelings labeled with things like “love” and “lust.” And from the little that Mikaela knew, humans would often have sex for… enjoyment rather than for offspring.

 

Mikaela gulped lightly. He had no idea about what was enjoyable about sex; he has never had it, nor had interest in any potential mate he has met.

 

But Yuuichirou… something was different. Was it only Mikaela’s fascination in his alien species, or more…? Mikaela would have pondered more were it not for Lacus clapping his hands together.

 

“Well, there you go! You should be set with this suit for your stay,” Lacus said, grinning widely at Yuuichirou. “If anything happens, come back to me. We’re friends, after all. Right, Mikaela?”

 

Mikaela’s tail swished and he laughed lightly as he cleared his mind of his previous thoughts. “Sure, Lacus. I’ll show Yuu-chan around now.”

 

“Wait!” Lacus stopped them, his eyes wide. “Why do you call him… Yuu-chan? What is the -chan?”

 

Mikaela said, “It’s one suffix that Japanese-speaking humans can use when referring to someone they feel affection towards.”

 

Lacus smirked. “You two seem like an unusual pair.”

 

Before Mikaela could glow with embarrassment again, he grabbed onto Yuuichirou’s hand. “Let’s go. Thanks, Lacus.”

 

"It's also used between brother and sister or siblings, really!" Yuuichirou added quickly before he was dragged away. He was forced to leave his other clothes behind and he huffed to himself. That was his favorite jacket.

 

"Mika, you can stop pulling now," he said, catching up to Mikaela.

 

Lacus watched them leave, tail swaying back and forth. He smiled a bit to himself before returning into his house. Yuuichirou glanced back before the door shut behind them, then returned his attention to Mikaela.

 

"You still don't really talk to me about things, you know...?" He leaned forward towards Mikaela. "I didn't know you glowed when you're embarrassed..."

 

Mikaela tried to look away. He had been thinking so much recently regarding romance and mating and Yuuichirou- he didn’t really want Yuuichirou to know.

 

“It’s what Foteinós do,” Mikaela murmured, trying to keep himself from glowing again. His skin was hot so he was a bit brighter than usual, but he wasn’t glowing as intensely as he was before.

 

He cleared his throat before Yuuichirou could continue to question him. “Anyways, we need to get back to my home- Krul’s home. I need to explain a lot to her. I left without saying anything.”

 

"I..." Yuuichirou began and frowned in concern. "Okay," he decided to agree.

 

He didn't really know why Mikaela was acting strange. He had completely forgotten about how Mikaela had kissed him before they left. He was on a different planet in a different star system and environment; he couldn't focus on small things like being kissed. It suddenly hit him.

 

This was exactly what he could write his final paper on. The one he had been struggling with for weeks.

 

"Mika!" He said suddenly. Yuuichirou grabbed onto Mikaela's arm. "Tell me everything about this place, as much as you can, your star system and everything!" He said, eyes bright while wonder spread over his features.

 

Even if the professor didn't believe him, he could at least write in detail to prove the star system and surrounding planets.

 

Mikaela was surprised by Yuuichirou’s sudden enthusiasm, but he smiled nonetheless. Yuuichirou was really endearing, especially when his eyes lit up to show off their bright green color. Mikaela looked up to the sky.

 

“Well…” Mikaela tapped his chin. “You know about our Sfaíra and our Mátias… which, to you, means our star and moons…” His eyes twinkled. “I can tell you about our Ουρανός… uh, our Ouranós later. It’s our version of Earth’s sky.”

 

They stood before another domed building now after their walk had ended. “This is my home. I need to talk to Krul, but I can show you around afterwards… hopefully.” His tail flicked apprehensively and he pressed his fingers against a small touch-screen beside the door. Once it recognized Mikaela, it opened automatically to allow him inside. Mikaela kept the door open for Yuuichirou to follow.

 

Yuuichirou took a moment to look at where the touch screen had been, tempted to touch it himself. He refrained and quickly caught up to Mikaela.

 

"I'd love to hear about it, maybe even map it out!" He breathed in a voice of excitement. He was practically bouncing as he walked beside Mikaela.

 

Until Krul walked up to them, tail lashing in slight irritation behind her.

 

"Uhm..." Yuuichirou hesitated with an awkward smile on his face, glancing at Mikaela then back to Krul.

 

"Now that you're back, I want to hear everything and just how much trouble you've gotten yourself into,” she said sternly, arms crossed.

 

Mikaela laughed apprehensively, then sat down cross-legged after Krul. Yuuichirou slowly followed after his lead. Mikaela looked at her, sparing a quick glance to Yuuichirou before finally meeting her eyes confidently. “I ran away.”

 

“I know that,” Krul’s tail flicked irritably. “But why?”

 

Mikaela sighed. “You know my beliefs.”

 

“Does he know?” Krul turned their attention to Yuuichirou. “Maybe you should do some explaining.”

 

Mikaela nodded slowly. “Well… as you may or may not know, Yuu-chan, I believe my species is made for long-distance travel. Space travel in particular. We have advanced technology and intelligence to make clothing that can regulate body temperature, to create machinery to travel quickly, and the most obvious; our ability to adapt and learn other languages and cultures.” Mikaela’s eyes were stern, serious. “With just a momentary touch of the lips, we can learn another’s language, and with the way our brains are structured, we can learn about other cultures quickly. Why would we naturally have these abilities if we were meant to stay put on our own planet?”

 

Yuuichirou listened quietly. He couldn't agree or disagree but some of it made him start laughing to himself. He smiled wide when Mikaela finished.

 

"I don't think that's bad," Yuuichirou stated.

 

"It's against the government here," Krul reprimanded Yuuichirou, frowning.

 

Yuuichirou shrugged and loomed over at her. "Our government hides aliens from us and we're allowed to travel into space." He paused. "We haven't gotten very far, but there's shrimp on pluto in our solar system so that's something; there's also a planet called Cancri, it's entirely made out of diamond. Point is, space travel is like exploring your backyard!" Yuuichirou exclaimed, throwing his arms up in the air.

 

"I've always studied the stars and got ahold of books about different planets or documentaries, hoping one day I could major in it, create a career from it... maybe even go into space myself as an astronaut!” Yuuichirou grinned a bit and scratched the back of his head. "I don't know why it's illegal for you guys, but it isn't bad."

 

“You don’t know our planet’s history,” Krul hissed, clearly frustrated and irritated from the situation. “We have enough to deal with.” She turned her attention to Mikaela. “I understand your viewpoint on Iridýon’s politics, Mikaela, but now is not the time to go off and-”

 

“But it is the time!” Mikaela snapped, his eyes slitting with frustration. “You don’t truly understand, Krul. Our people are…” He stopped, hesitantly glancing to Yuuichirou and wondering if he should talk so openly about their planet’s politics in front of a newcomer. He didn’t want to frighten Yuuichirou.

 

But he figured Yuuichirou would be more upset with him if he hid secrets and lied to him, so Mikaela settled on being honest. “Our people are being purged. Secretly and slowly, but every time one of us realizes that we aren’t meant to stay put on this planet on the edge of space, we’re captured and we don’t return. I know that can happen to me. But if I show them… if I show the people someone like Yuu-chan, they will all open their eyes.” He smiled lightly and added, “Ferid can’t massacre the entire Foteinós population, even if he wants to.”

 

He turned an apologetic eye to Yuuichirou and added softly, “I can explain more later.”

 

"If you knew they were killing people because of this, why would you do that?!" Yuuichirou blurted out, not wanting to wait longer for any explanation. His hands were clenched into fists and his eyebrows were knotted together in both anger and worry.

 

Krul tilted her at at Yuuichirou for a moment before returning her attention to Mikaela. "He's right... if you knew what was happening, why would you put your life and his own at risk?" Krul looked over as the human again, unable to read his expression.

 

"Even advanced races kill their own, it's so stupid," Yuuichirou muttered. "For what?" He huffed. "For what purpose are they keeping you guys here?" He pushed himself up and gave Mikaela a hard look.

 

Krul’s tail flicked thoughtfully. Mikaela hesitated, his eyes darkening as he thought of the friends he lost, the ones who were purged…

 

“I don’t know… and I want to find out,” Mikaela murmured. “I think… Ferid wants power. He has power right now, but he knows if someone goes out and brings attention to other civilizations, the people here will realize they’re being… controlled. Dictated.” Mikaela looked to Yuuichirou sternly. “My time spent on Earth taught me about different forms of leadership, and from what I’ve read on your cultures and history, it seems Ferid is what humans call a dictator. A tyrant.”

 

Yuuichirou huffed, crossing his arms. "If that's the case, you shouldn't be reckless." He frowned at Mikaela. He was just worried about Mikaela losing his life over this. "Tyrants aren't one to mess with, it takes years to take one down and even then, even longer."

 

With a decisive look between Krul and Mikaela, he said, "I'll help you with whatever it is, but neither of us are dying, got it?"

 

"No!" Krul interrupted. "Neither of you are doing this. Mikaela, you're taking him back to his planet and-"

 

"And what?" Yuuichirou snapped. "What about Mika? Are you just going to ask for forgiveness and for them to spare his life?"

 

Krul hesitated, her eyes flashing with fear. “I don’t want him to get killed because of this. I understand and agree with him, but he shouldn’t be the one to take action.”

 

“Then who will?” Mikaela argued stubbornly. “No one will do anything about it, ever. We’ll continue to be controlled, purged for whatever reason Ferid sees fit, and then what will come of our people?” Mikaela’s tail lashed angrily. “I know you’re worried about me, Krul. But I can’t sit back and watch our civilization crumble. Yuu-chan will not only prove to Ferid and the others that they are wrong about space travel, but he could give us insight on a better government and method of leadership. Don’t you understand how important other life can be to us?”

 

Krul fell silent. She crossed her arms and looked to the ground as she spoke. “You’re right, Mikaela. I just don’t want to see something bad happen to you.” She looked up to him with pleading eyes. “You’re my παιδί. My only one.”

 

Mikaela nodded, moving to hug her tightly. “I know. And you’re my μητέρα.” Their tails brushed against each other as they hugged, and when Mikaela parted from her, he glanced to Yuuichirou uncertainly. “You didn’t want to get wrapped up in all of this… Yuu-chan, if you need to get back home, I promise I can get you there as soon as possible.”

 

Yuuichirou shrugged and ruffled his own hair. "Don't worry about it." He smiled at Mikaela. "If we go back right now, they'll most likely be there." He looked away sheepishly. "Besides... maybe it'll be kinda fun to overthrow the government." He kicked his foot back and forth.

 

"Please be careful,” Krul requested softly.

 

"Don't worry about me, I'm more worried about what Guren has in store for me." He laughed out nervously.

 

"Guren?"

 

"My... parental guardian," Yuuichirou clarified.

 

Krul still looked slightly confused, so Mikaela murmured to her, “Τον γονέα του.” That seemed to make sense. She nodded and looked at Yuuichirou critically.

 

“Did you tell him where you were? Does he even know what’s going on?” She didn’t even wait for Yuuichirou’s response and went straight to scolding him. “Parents don’t relax when their children are somewhere they don’t know! They can’t sleep! Think of what you’ve done, νεανίας!”

 

Mikaela couldn’t help himself from chuckling at the light insult. Yuuichirou obviously didn’t know what it meant.

 

Yuuichirou frowned at her. "I know what I did and I'm ready to be punished or grounded for it." He looked away with a nervous look. "I didn't tell anybody I was leaving," he admitted. "I only told a friend to copy notes from school that I miss."

 

Krul shook her head with her hands placed on her hips. "Absolutely shameful."

 

"Yeah... I guess I deserve that,” Yuuichirou laughed softly.

 

Mikaela stood beside Yuuichirou and said, “While we’re here and Ferid isn’t, I could show you around while it’s safe, if you’d like.” As he spoke, his tail wound up around Yuuichirou’s waist again, the subtle strength of it keeping Yuuichirou right next to him.

 

Krul's eyes narrowed at Mikaela wrapping his tail around the boy's waist. She said nothing, however.

 

Without waiting for an answer, he reached down to take Yuuichirou’s hand. “So let’s go, there’s no time to waste!”

 

Yuuichirou opened his mouth to say something but shook his head and allowed Mikaela to drag him along. He ignored Mikaela's tail around his waist and how his heart fluttered yet again.

 

Having a tour of the planet would be really nice.

 

"Sure thing, Mika."

Chapter Text

The moment Mikaela pulled Yuuichirou outside, everything seemed brighter- if only a little bit. Yuuichirou could still feel the chill of the air, but he didn't shiver or become bothered by it. He was contently... warm, and gladly so.

 

The grass around them, colored lavender and shades of pink, blew in the slight wind. Old ruins and rocks could be seen in the distance, subtly decorating the scenery. The air he breathed was crisp, yet his lungs no longer hurt to breathe it in.

 

Even with the domed buildings and the few Fotienós meandering around, everything seemed calm.

 

The trees were large and certain fruits Yuuichirou had never seen before hung from their branches. The sky itself was breathtaking. Yuuichirou could clearly see the moons that rested around the orbit of the planet.

 

It looked like something out of a fantasy or sci-fi scene. Yuuichirou loved it.

 

He wanted to take pictures, so he started to pull out his phone, but he stopped. He shook his head to himself and continued to admire the scenery with his own eyes. There was no need to take pictures of it.

 

Even the water was an incredibly blue color, almost as blue as Mikaela's eyes.

 

If he looked around hard enough, there were creatures roaming about. Rather... large creatures. Everything ranged from blues to yellows and there were even some hints of red.

 

Mikaela smiled as Yuuichirou took it all in. They were wandering towards a more populated area, where the Fotienós were buying stuff from the local markets and stopping into various shops. They reached the main road side-by-side.

 

“This is Mικρή πόλη, or… Mikrí Póli. It’s my town,” Mikaela explained. “Obviously, it’s only a short distance from my home. We don’t usually walk everywhere, but if we’re not in a hurry to go somewhere, a walk can be nice.”

 

Some Fotienós were on small flat boards that hovered above the ground. If they stood upright the board slowed down, but if they were squatting, the board would zoom around quicker. Mikaela, like all Fotienós, had one himself, though he only used it if he needed to get somewhere immediately.

 

"So, do you... you wanna, I dunno, walk around...?" Yuuichirou asked with a slight teasing lit to his voice. A smile pulled over his lips when he looked over at Mikaela. He'd enjoy a walk. It would allow him to take in more of the sights and maybe some more animals. Their sky was beautiful, but so was the planet’s surface. Even the Fotienós were beautiful, and maybe even a little intimidating.

 

Yuuichirou, after hesitating, held out his hand for Mikaela to take.

 

"Show me your favorite places," he requested.

 

Mikaela blinked down at his extended hand, his tail waving contentedly. He knew that was a sign of affection for humans. He took Yuuichirou’s hand gratefully, pleased at the slightly intimate feeling it created.

 

Holding onto Yuuichirou’s hand made Mikaela feel like this was his human and no one else’s. The sudden, slightly possessive thought made Mikaela’s skin feel warm, like a glow was about to surface, but it was just not enough to break through.

 

“There’s a lot of those, and it would take countless orbits of Sfaíra to show you everything…” Mikaela lifted his eyes to the sky, noticing it was getting dimmer. It was always darker on their planet than it was on Earth, considering Earth was closer to their star, the Sun, than Iridýon was to Sfaíra. Still, there were varying degrees of light and dark, and it was the evening now on this particular region of Iridýon.

 

Because of that, and because of Yuuichirou’s fascination with space, Mikaela knew the perfect spot. “Follow my lead,” Mikaela told him and began to walk off the main road, heading towards a few hills not too far away.

 

Yuuichirou laced his fingers with Mikaela's as he followed after the alien. He continued to look around their surroundings. It was all so... calming to look at. It was surprisingly similar to Earth, yet it was like everything was painted in a permanent sunset. It was beautiful, and he couldn't find the right way to express how pleasing everything was to look at.

 

He hurried until he was walking side by side with Mikaela. He didn't like walking behind people so much, it made him feel out of the loop, especially with more than one person.

 

"You know... I'm really happy to know you guys take such good care of your planet," Yuuichirou said thoughtfully, turning his gaze towards Mikaela.

 

It was a nice change to see Mikaela in his natural skin tone. The white freckles dusting his skin fit better against the light blue of his skin. It was just too... weird to see Mikaela in tan or pale skin like the people on his own planet. Yuuichirou liked it a lot better.

 

Mikaela hummed and said, “There was a time when our planet was close to decomposing due to our damaging lifestyle. We were so stubborn to move on from our technology that we went as far to blow off the many, obvious environmental warnings as hoaxes. Once Iridýon became almost uninhabitable, some Foteinós got the idea to leave Iridýon behind and find a new planet to live on.”

 

Mikaela lead Yuuichirou up the slope of the hill, step by step- slowly, since he knew humans were slightly weaker than Foteinós. “I don’t truly know what happened when they left, but there was some sort of freak accident. The massive mothership that some Foteinós were in to travel glitched and exploded right above our heads and no one within the ship survived. I wasn’t alive yet when this happened, but… apparently my father was one of the Foteinós who died.”

 

He finally broke the top of the hill with Yuuichirou at his side. Below them was a vast, grassy valley with a gorgeous, shimmering river winding through it. Mikaela began to lead Yuuichirou down the hill as he continued to explain. “The family members of the Foteinós who died, especially the ones who witnessed the explosion, had no one to blame… so they blamed Ouranós. The Sky.” Mikaela’s tail flicked side to side as they walked. “They added on to the fear of intergalactic travel, and I believe this is only one of many reasons why the Foteinós are so against leaving the planet. Many environmentalists say it was an omen, a sign that we had to stay on Iridýon and fix our ways of living instead of running away from the messes we made.”

 

Mikaela brought Yuuichirou to the edge of a field of beautiful, colorful plants a human might refer to as flowers. He stood there silently for a moment, his eyes flicking over the thriving vegetation. “I agree with that… we should not abandon Iridýon after destroying it. However, one accident shouldn’t hold us back from trying to explore ever again. But since this accident happened somewhat recently… it’s the main argument against people like me, who believe exploring is a good thing.” Mikaela urged Yuuichirou to sit down beside him within the soft, cool grass of the valley. “I’m sorry for all the explanation, Yuu-chan. I hope it helps you understand why so many Foteinós are against space travel, and why this is so difficult for me to fight against…”

 

Yuuichirou stayed quiet for a little after Mikaela finished talking. He sat on the grass beside him, focusing on how the wind blew through his hair and how it felt cool against his face. He couldn't feel it much anywhere else due to the suit, but it was still nice.

 

He took in a deep breath and looked up at Mikaela with a sympathetic smile.

 

"You guys are pretty amazing... I agree, it's a little silly they let one accident hinder them in their progress in exploration; but.." Yuuichirou leaned back on his hands and looked up at the sky. The stars twinkled around the visible moons and watching them made him smile. "It also helped you guys fix your mistakes... part of me is glad none of you abandoned this planet, you have this amazing view."

 

Mikaela looked at Yuuichirou curiously, his tail flicking absentmindedly behind him.

 

"I wish humans would fix their mistakes. Our planet is dying, too..." Yuuichirou said quietly. There was a tinge of sadness in his voice. "We have such amazing constellations, too, and so many species... so many who have died out..." He pursed his lips and looked over at Mikaela. The light reflecting off of the moons shone on Yuuichirou in a soft light, making his green eyes that much brighter.

 

"I'm sorry to hear your father died on the mothership, even if you didn't know him." He looked away towards the grass. "It's hard losing a parent..."

 

Mikaela’s tail swished over blades of grass, the fuzzy tip brushing lightly on Yuuichirou’s back. He wasn’t surprised to hear about Earth; from his observation, the humans were tarnishing Earth just like the Foteinós had nearly killed Iridýon. The parallels between their worlds and species were strikingly similar sometimes.

 

Mikaela had noticed that Guren was alone in raising Yuuichirou, but it didn’t surprise him at first, since most Foteinós went off on their own after mating anyways. But now knowing what he did about human courting customs and their tendencies to mate for life… it was striking Mikaela as strange.

 

“What happened to your lost parent?” Mikaela asked gently, carefully, as not to sound intrusive. He had inched closer to Yuuichirou, studying the human’s delicate features, from his dark eyelashes to the curve of his nose. Mikaela’s heart fluttered oddly.

 

Yuuichirou opened his mouth but paused. He suddenly smiled and brought his knees up, wrapping his arms around them as he rested his chin on his knees.

 

"She died pulling Guren out of lake during a typhoon," his smiled faded a little as he spoke. "She fell into it right after Guren was pulled out, and they didn't get to her in time so she ended up drowning..." Memories flooded into his mind but he pushed them back and looked back up at Mikaela.

 

"She was very pretty, Guren really loved her and so did I," the smile faded completely and he averted his gaze. "I was only seven when it happened, though... Japan gets really bad typhoons since it's an island, the wind and currents were just too strong for her."

 

Mikaela was silent as he listened, feeling sympathetic.

 

"... Guren says I look just like her, he's really weird."

 

Mikaela’s eyes trailed over Yuuichirou’s features slowly. His dark eyebrows were probably from Guren, as well as the strong shape of his jaw and his black hair… but the gentle slope of his neck, the fairness of his skin and the striking green of his eyes all looked beautiful and definitely from another person.

 

Not to mention his light pink lips, that appeared to be quite soft…

 

Mikaela knew how soft they were, and he recalled the moment before they left Earth, when Mikaela had spontaneously kissed Yuuichirou- and not to learn any sort of language.

 

Mikaela’s heart began to race, and he wasn’t sure why. His tail inched closer, curling protectively around Yuuichirou’s waist. It brought Yuuichirou’s attention to his face again, causing their eyes to meet.

 

“She must have been… breathtaking,” Mikaela murmured, feeling a strange pull to Yuuichirou. He licked his lips. “Since she created someone as… as beautiful as you.”

 

Warmth began to spread into his face, ears, and neck. Yuuichirou had to divert his attention elsewhere to try and stop how red he was becoming. He was completely flustered and he didn't think his heart could handle it, what with how hard it was beating.

 

"You're just as weird as Guren..." Yuuichirou murmured, hiding his face in his arms. He was sure he'd start steaming at any given moment because of how sincere Mikaela had sounded when the compliment left his lips. "She was, though... very much so..." he said, voice muffled by his arms.

 

Mikaela felt his heart swell happily at the sight of a blush across Yuuichirou’s face. That meant he was flustered… which meant his compliment affected Yuuichirou positively, right?

 

Mikaela thought back to the book he read on Earth. After the human girl began to turn red, or blush… the male human…

 

Mikaela licked his lips. He was filled with curiosity from head to tail-tip, so he sucked in a tense breath and leaned closer to Yuuichirou’s face. His tail tightened around Yuuichirou’s waist, tugging him closer to Mikaela and causing Yuuichirou to look up with surprise.

 

Mikaela closed his eyes and pressed their lips together carefully, silently questioning if this was the right thing to do.

 

The warmth from earlier spread through Yuuichirou’s entire body the closer Mikaela got to him. It became worse when their lips were touching and it made his heart do flips, a spark running down his spine and making his hands curl into fists.

 

Part of him really wanted to pull away but the bigger part of him more than gladly took it. Almost a bit eagerly, too. He felt conflicted, but the feeling of Mikaela's lips against his own clouded his judgement and he couldn't help but to crave more. Just a simple touch of lips made Yuuichirou's skin light up in flames. At least, that's what it felt like.

 

But it wasn't the type to make Yuuichirou pull away. Instead, Yuuichirou's hands came up and gripped onto Mikaela's arms, mimicking the way Mikaela's tail was wrapped around him.

 

Yuuichirou wasn't a stranger to kissing; he's kissed plenty of people, men and women alike, but never anything more. Mikaela, however… he was an alien, and one that made his body react the way others couldn't.

 

You shouldn't be doing this, Yuuichirou scolded himself, yet he ignored it. He wasn't denying his attraction to Mikaela, he was just trying to be wary. He didn't want to let desire run him over and leave him bare afterwards. Yuuichirou wasn't the type to open up to many people, especially not in this way. Not with how he craved Mikaela, even if he forced himself not to think about it.

 

Mikaela’s senses were overwhelmed in the best way possible. Every sound, every breath, every shift in temperature was noted in Mikaela’s mind. He felt Yuuichirou warming, and feeling his hands on his arms made Mikaela feel just as desired.

 

All of these feelings and urges Mikaela was experiencing were unlike anything he’s ever felt. He didn’t know what lust and desire meant… at least, until now.

 

Mikaela was nearly trembling from the heat he felt. His skin was most certainly glowing now and he guided Yuuichirou down onto his back, not liking the strain he got from leaning as he was. Maybe if Yuuichirou was beneath him, it would make their positions easier…

 

Their lips separated for a moment, allowing Mikaela a look at Yuuichirou’s adorably red face and his shiny green eyes.

 

Mikaela’s blue glow reflected on Yuuichirou’s skin, illuminating his eyes and the slight moisture on his lips. Mikaela leaned down again, his thoughts pushed aside as he pursued the feelings that were rapidly manifesting inside him. Except this time, he wanted to try something that he saw in the human book on ‘romance…’

 

Humans seemed to really enjoy tongue-on-tongue contact, and Mikaela was curious about how that felt.

 

Mikaela ran one hand down Yuuichirou’s torso, his fingers tracing the smoothness of the suit covering his lean body. It caused Yuuichirou to shudder and his mouth to part- Mikaela slipped his tongue inside, licking deep within the hot, tiny space of his mouth.

 

Yuuichirou felt something hot well up inside him, shooting down his body and making his skin tingle as it settled deep within his belly. It was amplified when he felt Mikaela's rather long tongue slip into his mouth. His hands tightened their grip on Mikaela's arms to anchor him to reality. He couldn't let himself get lost in this desirable feeling, no matter how tempting it was.

 

Even so, he couldn't stop the way his voice left his throat. It left him in a deep moan riddled with gradually rapid breathing and gasps, hitching out from his throat when their tongues met.

 

Mikaela's hands were distracting but his tongue was the only thing Yuuichirou could focus on. He opened his mouth wider, pressing his tongue against Mikaela's. Even his breathing became shuddered.

 

He became somewhat embarrassed when he began to realize how aroused he was feeling. He wanted to curl up and hide it.

 

Yuuichirou couldn't remember when his eyes fell shut but he was aware of how quickly his mind was becoming clouded with the utter lust of wanting more. The realization was almost enough to make Yuuichirou push Mikaela away.

 

Mikaela didn’t know what was happening to him. His body was hot, his mind was hazy and he was addicted to Yuuichirou’s taste. The human beneath him, squirming and gasping should be possibly alarming to Mikaela… but no, the situation wasn’t alarming at all. He was filled with an urge to continue, to keep evoking those sounds from Yuuichirou.

 

Yuuichirou’s tongue was so small and cute compared to Mikaela’s, which Yuuichirou once commented was slightly similar to an Earth creature’s, called a snake. It seemed to bring Yuuichirou great pleasure, for he continued to suck on Mikaela’s tongue and whimper softly.

 

Mikaela loved it. He loved how he was feeling, and how he was making Yuuichirou feel. His tail was waving around aimlessly behind him, but it snuck around now and curled around Yuuichirou’s thigh. Sometimes, Mikaela’s tail had a mind of its own, and it acted out Mikaela’s subconscious desires.

 

For now, it lightly squeezed Yuuichirou’s thigh and encouraged his legs to spread open wider. Mikaela fit himself with that spot, liking how their bodies slotted together. Mikaela licked his way deeper into Yuuichirou’s mouth, with the tip nearly flicking the back of his throat.

 

Yuuichirou thought he was going to burn up, like he almost couldn't handle how he was feeling. He suddenly let go of Mikaela's arms and wrapped them around his shoulders, pulling him closer- as close as Yuuichirou could make him get. He desired friction, yet he denied himself from moving to get that friction. It only served to frustrate his body further because it wasn't getting what it wanted, the attention it needed.

 

He never thought he'd be doing anything like this with Mikaela. He was a completely different species but when it boiled down to it, Yuuichirou really couldn't deny anything he felt for him.

 

These feelings... Yuuichirou didn't know when they had started. Mikaela had always been a little goofy and a little dumb when it came to certain things, but the blond was utterly endearing and adorable. Said feelings probably surfaced the moment Mikaela first kissed him, but Yuuichirou couldn't be sure.

 

What he was sure of, was that Mikaela's tail felt really nice around his thigh and he really wanted to move his hips and become lost in the pleasure he had only ever given himself in the privacy of his bed room. No one else had been able to get him so riled up.

 

Yuuichirou didn't stop sucking or kissing him. He continued pressing up into the kiss, letting Mikaela's tongue do as it pleased.

 

He tried not to think too hard about the length of Mikaela's tongue or how he could feel it reaching every inch of his mouth.

 

There was just something about Yuuichirou that Mikaela couldn’t get enough of. His hips were moving on their own accord, unintentionally grinding down onto Yuuichirou in a slow, sweet rhythm.

 

Mikaela parted from Yuuichirou, allowing the smaller human beneath him to breathe. His eyes locked onto Yuuichirou as he gasped and panted. He noticed a blue shine across his wet lips; Mikaela’s glow.

 

Mikaela felt satisfied from this, and he would have kept going…

 

… if it weren’t for a massive stampeding animal charging their way.

 

Mikaela leapt off of Yuuichirou, moving quickly to defend his defenseless partner from whatever was headed their way. He stood in front of Yuuichirou, eyes angrily slitted and teeth bared. His tail lashed angrily and he snarled, but the animal skidded to a halt in confusion.

 

Mikaela blinked. “Μέλι?”

 

The animal in question tilted its horned head, blinking its wide fuchsia eyes at Mikaela.

 

Mikaela gaped. “Πώς ήρθες εδώ!?” He rushed forward to pet his pet’s massive head, scratching him between the horns. “Καλη αγόρι, λυπάμαι που σας φοβάμαι.” His tail waved gently behind him to show he was calm, hoping to communicate no harm to Méli.

 

Yuuichirou would rather go back to the sweet friction he had felt just a moment ago. Now, he was just staring wide eyed up at the huge creature standing in front of Mikaela. He scrambled backwards from them both and his erection quickly diminished, as well as his enthusiasm for their earlier activities.

 

"What the fuck!" Yuuichirou nearly screeched out. His face was still red but he was currently trying to calm himself down from the sudden encounter with the large animal.

 

He didn't want to move anywhere near said animal.

 

"... is... is that your pet?" He asked, a look of confusion crossed over his face as he moved to cover his crotch with his hands just in case anything was still showing in any way. He noticed how Mikaela was petting the creature and how the creature responded to his touched. "I thought you were allergic..."

 

Just as Yuuichirou pointed out his allergies, Mikaela turned away to sneeze suddenly. He rubbed at his nose. “Yeah… I am. Usually I just deal with it…” Mikaela glanced over his shoulder, taking notice of Yuuichirou’s state.

 

He was just…

 

Mikaela’s eyes trailed down to where he was squeezing his legs together. His throat suddenly felt tight and he swallowed.

 

He had driven Yuuichirou to that state…?

 

“U-Uh… anyways, I should bring him back home… how did he even escape in the first place? Jeez…” Mikaela scratched the back of his head, his body jerking as another sneeze exploded from his nose. Méli purred and butted his head against Mikaela’s shoulder affectionately. Mikaela sighed and pet him back, even though his allergies just got worse and worse.

 

Yuuichirou let out a shaky breath and lowered his head, thought has was still wary of Méli. Yuuichirou fought with himself to just stand up and ignored how exposed he felt in the stupid suit he was wearing. He felt a bit frustrated but stood up anyways, wishing he still had his jacket with him- at least until his… problem went away.

 

The blush still painted on his cheeks, Yuuichirou took his time with walking up to the both of them while raising a hesitant hand towards the large creature.

 

"At least your allergies aren't fatal, that's good to know..." He jumped a bit when Méli turned his head towards him.

 

"Y-Yeah, we should... get him back home..." Yuuichirou murmured.

 

Their previous antics were shoved to the back of his mind. He didn't feel like talking about it or worrying about it. For some reason, it made his heart ache in worry when he did think about it.

 

He glanced at Mikaela before looking away again and taking a moment to try and pet the large beast.

 

Unsure of the foreign person before him, Méli snorted and turned his head away. Mikaela wondered why Méli would react like that, so he looked to Yuuichirou and noticed the boy’s slightly disgusted expression.

 

Mikaela’s tail flicked irritably. “I know you’re frightened, Yuu-chan, but Méli is a good Βουβάλου λιονταριού. He doesn’t deserve to be looked at like he’s some sort of freak.”

 

He noticed Yuuichirou’s confused expression and Mikaela tried to translate. “Uh… Méli is what you might call a ‘buffalo lion.’ That’s the closest I can get to Japanese to explain his species. But anyways, he’s cute! Don’t be mean to him, Yuu-chan!” He smiled and ruffled Méli’s fluffy cheeks while cooing to him, then sneezing off to the side.

 

He began leading Méli back to the direction of his home with one hand gently holding his horn. The valley they were in wasn’t too far from the home.

 

The walk back was silent. Mikaela could tell Yuuichirou was still riled up over their activities. Mikaela was admittedly still flustered, but he didn’t want to show it so clearly. He didn’t know what to think or how to handle what he did to Yuuichirou and why. He had never experienced something like that before.

 

Yuuichirou immediately felt guilt hit him. He hadn't meant to look at Méli like that; he just wasn't used to how he looked and he was trying to take it all in.

 

"Sorry..." Yuuichirou said sheepishly, looking away from the both of them as he followed behind them. He itched to take ahold of Mikaela's hand as they walked, but he refrained from doing so.

 

He didn't know where he and Mikaela stood at all, or if such a relationship was possible for Mikaela. He didn't know much about how things worked for Iridýon’s people. He's even noticed the lack of 'couples' when they had gone through town.

 

You're thinking about it again, Yuuichirou mentally sighed, pushing everything back for good- at least for today.

 

"Buffalo lion, huh...?" He tried at changing the subject or hoping to lift the tense air. "You're right, he is pretty cute..."

 

“He is,” Mikaela agreed, but he kept his response curt. His head was still rather fuzzy from what they were doing before and he wasn’t sure how to interact with Yuuichirou for now.

 

Maybe once they got home and settled down, they could talk.

 

Mikaela kept his eyes averted the whole way back, and Yuuichirou decided to do the same for lack of anything else to say.

 

 

Back on Earth, Guren was going to have an aneurysm at this rate.

 

Being a father was not easy.

 

He returned home to find the house empty, lacking both Yuuichirou and Mikaela. Worst of all, Yuuichirou’s favorite hoodie was gone and so was Mikaela’s spacecraft- both signs that the two of them were gone and not coming back anytime soon.

 

When Shinoa appeared at the house uninvited with Mitsuba, Kimizuki and Yoichi behind her, Guren yanked open the door and said, “That idiot Yuu is gone,” with panicked expression in his purplish eyes.

 

Shinoa blinked at him, as if this was no big deal. “Yeah, he told me to copy down some notes for him while he was away.”

 

Guren’s eyebrow twitched. “So he’s more concerned over his goddamn classes than his father’s sanity. Real classy, Yuu…” He narrowed his eyes at the college kids on his doorstep. “Come in,” he said and stepped aside for them.

 

"So he actually just up and left...?" Mitsuba stepped inside their home and since Kimizuki was the last to walk in, he shut the door behind him.

 

"It seems so, we haven't seen him in school for the past week," Shinoa pointed out, placing her hands on her hips. "I believe both me and Guren know why."

 

Guren frowned at her, lips pursing. He was nursing a cup of coffee in his hands; it was probably his eighth one. He was trying to calm his nerves but his coffee was only making it worse.

 

"I've texted him multiple times but he hasn't answered." Guren said, diverting the subject a little. "I haven't tried calling him yet, I don’t even know if he'll answer." His foot started bouncing up and down as soon as he sat down in a chair.

 

“It’s obvious Mika-san finally abducted Yuu-san to eat his brains,” Shinoa grinned. “That’s what aliens do, after all!”

 

“Aliens?” Kimizuki snorted. “Such a thing doesn’t exist.”

 

“Yeah, Shinoa, don’t you really know what happened?” Mitsuba crossed her arms in front of her chest, raising an eyebrow doubtfully at her. “Stop speaking in riddles.”

 

“I’m being totally honest!” Shinoa shrugged. “Mika-san is an alien. Right, Guren?”

 

Guren sipped at his coffee, then said, “Right.” Another sip, then he nearly spat it out. He managed to swallow it down before yelling, “Wait, did that stupid kid tell you guys!?”

 

Mitsuba’s eyes widened. “What are you going on about?”

 

“Oops, did I say too much?” Shinoa giggled. “Nope, Yuu-san told me nothing.”

 

“Then how do you know!?” Guren asked, appearing quite frantic. “Is it all over the news? Is the government going to come kick down the door and-”

 

“No, no, no!” Shinoa waved her hands. “Only Onee-san knows. She showed me the proof.”

 

“Proof…?” Guren rubbed away some sweat on his temple.

 

“Pictures of Mika-san’s ship crashing into your home and of it leaving the Earth,” Shinoa said casually. “And hearing from Nii-san, of course!”

 

Guren clicked his tongue irritably. “Dammit, Seishirou…” He tried to put the pieces together and blurted, “Wait, how did you even get the pictures-”

 

“Enough small talk!” Shinoa covered up quickly. “Anyways! Poor Yoichi-san, Kimizuki-san and Mii-chan are here, likely confused out of their minds! Care to explain to them what’s going on?”

 

Guren rubbed at his temples as he sat his cup of coffee down on the table. He didn't feel like explaining anything, he just wanted his son back.

 

"Mikaela crashed into our house about a few months or so ago," he started as he looked over at them. "He's blue." Guren dead panned. "He's blue and he has a tail and everything, he can apparently change colors like a damn chameleon and he constantly throws out my fucking coffee."

 

Yoichi shifted nervously as Guren continued.

 

"He kissed Yuu the moment he walked off that ship, I swear he's got Yuu hypnotized or some shit... Anyways, he's from a completely different planet and everything, the whole package." Guren waved a hand around and looked away from them. Yoichi took a slight step back, catching Kimizuki and Mitsuba's attention.

 

"I know aliens are scary but it looks like you're going to bolt, Yoichi..." Mitsuba patted his shoulder and Yoichi just offered a half assed sheepish shrug.

 

"So... Mikaela took Yuu off this planet...?" Kimizuki squinted, crossing his arms over his chest.

 

"Yes, and I want my son back!" Guren shouted, shoving himself out of his chair to get more coffee.

 

Everyone looked sympathetically at Guren. “We would help if we knew how,” Mitsuba offered, but no one knew what to do.

 

“Do you think Mikaela took Yuu away by force…?” Mitsuba murmured.

 

“From the few times we’ve seen him, he doesn’t seem like the kind to do that,” Shinoa said. “And knowing Yuu-san… well, especially if Yuu-san’s got the hots for this alien guy… he insisted to go with! I bet you anything Mika-san didn’t even want him to go, but since Yuu-san is so annoying, he had no choice but to take him with.”

 

“Well…” Kimizuki adjusted his glasses. “That makes more sense than the eating-brains theory you had going in the beginning.” Shinoa smirked at him and held up a thumbs up.

 

“Now that you say it…” Guren murmured, sitting back down again, “that sounds typical of that brat. I wouldn’t be surprised if that was the case.”

 

“I know my darling Yuu-san unlike any other!” Shinoa laughed.

 

“So do we just… wait for him?” Kimizuki scratched his head. “Wait, this is crazy. Yuu is in space, god knows where, and we’re having a conversation about it in a goddamn dining room. Shouldn’t we… I don’t know, get help from someone more powerful?”

 

“Let’s not get any authorities involved,” Guren grumbled. “Plus, no one’s gonna believe us. Not even with the… suspiciously taken photos Shinoa and her siblings seem to have.”

 

“M-Maybe we should just wait for him, I’m sure it’ll be fine!” Yoichi finally spoke up, laughing nervously.

 

“I guess…” Mitsuba grumbled.

 

“You said you haven’t tried calling him yet, shouldn’t you try?” Kimizuki suggested. “I doubt that a cell signal would reach across space… but if it does, I’ll be pissed that I sometimes lose signal in my own shitty living room.”

 

“That’s not a bad idea…” Guren sighed, looking at his phone tentatively.

 

"Try calling him," Shinoa insisted, leaning over Guren's shoulder and poking him repeatedly in the back.

 

"Alright, alright!" Guren huffed at her, moving away and unlocking his screen before pulling up Yuuichirou’s number. He hesitated and pursed his lips together before hitting the call button. He put it on speaker and it rang a few times. Another two rings and the sound changed, signaling that Yuuichirou had picked up.

 

"Hello...? Woah, rad, I can get calls here..." His voice sounded a bit far away, but there was a loud sound that sounded like a motor boat... almost like purring? Guren couldn't tell.

 

"Yuuichirou, where the fuck are you right now?" Guren frowned, glaring down at the phone as if was the one who had taken his son away.

 

"Vacation, you know... like... aha, I'm sorry I didn't tell you before we left but, uh..." Yuuichirou paused and Guren could almost see him shrugging. "I'm on a really... really big planet right now, it's really pretty, like- holy shit, though being kissed every time I meet someone new is... well, it's a time."

 

"He's rambling,” Mitsuba groaned.

 

“Anyways, onto more important matters!” Shinoa interrupted. “Speaking of kissing, have you and Mika-san had sex yet?”

 

“Wha-” Yuuichirou stammered.

 

“I need to know for scientific purposes,” Shinoa pressed. “This is crucial information, Yuu-san. Reproductive functions in another alien species is a fascinating, unexplored topic, and what better way to study it than to actually fuck the alien-”

 

“We’re gonna move on to something more important!” Mitsuba shoved her aside to shut her up. “Yuu, do you have any idea where you are!?”

 

“Uh… Mika’s mom said… in a galaxy called ‘Díni,’” Yuuichirou muttered. “Though I’m not sure how that would even help anyone on Earth…”

 

“It’s no use,” Kimizuki groaned. “No one’s gonna know where that is…”

 

“It sounds…” Yoichi spoke up, “something like… the Sunflower Galaxy.”

 

“The… the what?” Mitsuba stared at him. “Whatever Yuu just said sounds nothing like sunflower.”

 

“No, I-I saw it somewhere… online!” Yoichi laughed awkwardly. “Anyways! The Sunflower Galaxy is about 37 million light years away from us… it’s also known as Messier 63.”

 

“That’s Yoichi for you, knowing random space facts in the most convenient times!” Shinoa grinned.

 

Suddenly, the call hung up.

 

“What the hell!?” Guren snapped. “That idiot had the guts to hang up on me…!?”

 

“Uh, actually…” Kimizuki muttered, lifting up a cord with a plug on the end from the kitchen table. “I think this is his phone charger… so his phone probably died.”

 

“That moron forgot his phone charger!?” Guren ran a hand through his hair. “You’ve gotta be fucking kidding me…”

 

"At least we know he's safe," Yoichi rubbed the back of his head. Kimizuki half heartedly agreed but looked over at Yoichi.

 

"It's oddly convenient you know what Yuu said," he pointed out.

 

Shinoa wiggled her brows and clung into Yoichi from behind. "Maybe Yoichi-san is an alien too." She suggested, poking his cheek.

 

Yoichi laughed and moved away from Shinoa.

 

"You guys are funny, I just know lots of languages..." He quickly covered. “And what Yuu-kun said sounded a lot like Greek, so I made a quick guess.” Shinoa seemed satisfied with his answer.

 

"I'm more worried about getting in touch with Yuu again,” Guren interrupted.

 

“He’ll figure something out,” Shinoa shrugged. “Mika-san’s an alien, and if he can take Yuu-san somewhere 37 million light years away without an issue… then I’m sure they can find a way to charge his phone battery.”

 

“She’s got a point,” Mitsuba had to agree.

 

“Alright… for now, all of you, get out of my house,” Guren groaned. “I don’t know why you showed up to begin with but… I’m gonna get a headache with all you obnoxious kids around.”

 

“Yeah, Guren’s an old man so he needs his rest,” Shinoa snickered.

 

“Shut the hell up,” Guren groaned. “Get outta here.”

 

“Okay!” Shinoa cheered as she turned to leave with the others following her. “Bye-bye!” Everyone else waved and said varying goodbyes before leaving Guren alone in his home.

 

Guren sighed once the silence surrounded him. Then, under his breath, he muttered, “I’m gonna kill him when he gets back…”

Chapter Text

Yuuichirou cursed down at his phone when it shut off. He had only just realized he didn't have a charger for it. He didn't even know this planet had satellites that let him call across the galaxy.

 

"Well shit... Guren is mad," Yuuichirou sighed out and tossed his phone onto the nearest surface. He leaned his head back and covered his face with his hands. "I can't believe Shinoa asked me that..." He murmured to himself before jumping when he heard Mikaela walking back into the room. He had been situating Méli back into his 'den.’ Yuuichirou didn’t know the proper term.

 

"Oh... hey," Yuuichirou greeted awkwardly. They hadn’t been able to hold a normal conversation because of the other day. Well, Yuuichirou didn't know what a day was anymore on this planet.

 

He felt like he had been awake for a long time.

 

Mikaela smiled lightly at Yuuichirou. “I forget that humans need to sleep more often…” His tail flicked as he added, “There’s only a few more hours of daylight left… so let’s take advantage of it. Then you should rest.”

 

He rubbed at his nose, which was sore from all his sneezing. “Anyways, there’s some friends of mine I’d like you to meet. There’s a Mátia Gathering tonight, so it’s the perfect opportunity to introduce you to many Foteinós that I know.”

 

Upon seeing Yuuichirou’s confused stare, Mikaela laughed lightly. “I forgot humans have a different term for things like Mátia Gatherings… uhm. The closest word I can think of is a party, or a conference, maybe. Every time that our Mátia Týchi can be seen, we like to gather outside and share food and stories with each other. Týchi only can be seen on certain evenings, so the Gatherings happen often, though not all the time.” Mikaela smiled and said, “Plus, Týchi means ‘luck,’ so we like to think we’ll be luckier if we go to these Gatherings.”

 

"It sounds like a fun thing to do before sleeping..." Yuuichirou murmured right after yawning. He rubbed at his eyes and pushed himself up out of the chair he had sat down in during the call with Guren.

 

"Oh-... hey, do you... have any way of charging my phone?" He asked, handing his phone over to Mikaela to look at.

 

He stopped in front of him. His gaze trailed down to Mikaela's lips, feeling a fluttering of want before he mentally shook his head and looked back up.

 

"Also, I'm almost afraid to see what kind of food you guys have,” Yuuichirou laughed.

 

“I could find a way,” Mikaela promised when he took the phone from Yuuichirou. He had learned that phones and tablets were some of the most advanced technology humans had, and therefore closest to his own technology. He could easily find a way to charge the battery in the phone.

 

“The food is totally natural and delicious… unlike those artificial things you put in your foods,” Mikaela added, squinting at Yuuichirou. “There’s none of that here. I promise it all tastes great!”

 

"Wha-... our food isn't that--... bad..." Yuuichirou tried to defend; key word, tried. The truth was, a lot of Earth foods were terrible and full of things their bodies didn't need.

 

Mikaela set his phone aside for the time being. “For now, let’s go to the Mátia Gathering. It will take a short amount of time to walk there. I’m bringing a bunch of χυμώδη φρούταs to the Gathering. Erm- uh… chymódi froúta’s.” Mikaela tensed his eyebrows. “It’s… something like ‘juicy fruit’ in Japanese. Anyways, you should try some when we get there.”

 

Mikaela left momentarily to get his basket of the fruits, which were large and colored light purple. Their shapes were round and smooth; they appeared similar to Earth’s fruits known as grapes, but much larger and colored slightly different.

 

Yuuichirou sighed and pushed his hair out of his face as he looked down at the large fruits. They looked intimidating to even try to eat, yet his stomach was growling. Yuuichirou was losing all sense of time and he wasn't even sure that last time he had eaten but he had to find something to eat, and soon.

 

“Let’s go, Yuu-chan!”

 

Yuuichirou made quick work of catching up to Mikaela and heading back outside. The lighting outside seemed different, but he wasn't sure if it had gotten darker or lighter; he was too tired to really take note of it in the first place. If he had to guess, it was marginally darker outside.

 

His body felt sluggish but he followed after Mikaela nonetheless. The only thing keeping his mind off sleep was watching the way Mikaela's tail swayed back and forth as the blond walked.

 

The Gathering was only a short distance away. Mikaela knew they were close when the soft murmur of voices gradually became louder, and the soft glow of Foteinós alongside dim streetlights illuminated the town centre.

 

“Χαίρετε, Μικαέλα!”

 

Mikaela perked up at the sight of his fellow townspeople greeting him. “Χαίρετε!” He said back, to them. He nodded to Yuuichirou beside him. “Αυτός είναι ο φίλος μου. Είναι Aνθρώπινο ον.”

 

“Aνθρώπινο ον?” One of them with short, curly purple hair said. Mikaela knew her as Chess. She arched her eyebrows as she came closer to Yuuichirou, tilting her head. “Δεν φαίνεται πολύ διαφορετικό από εμάς.”

 

“Αν δεν ήξερα καλύτερα, θα πίστευα ότι είναι ένας από εμάς,” another Foteinós, who was taller and had blonde hair, added on. Her name was Horn.

 

Mikaela chuckled. “Δεν μπορεί να σας καταλάβει. Θα μεταφράσω, λοιπόν-” His eyes widened as he was cut off by Chess, stepping closer and pressing her round lips to Yuuichirou’s.

 

Mikaela’s tail lashed angrily. He set his basket of fruits aside. “I said I could translate-”

 

“But this is easier, isn’t it?” Chess whined. “It’s a pleasure to meet you! What is your name?” Chess said, blinking prettily up at Yuuichirou. “You’re really cute! Aw, do human beings turn red? Wow, his skin is beautiful…!”

 

“Θέλω να του μιλήσω κι εγώ!” Horn said, pushing Chess aside to tilt Yuuichirou’s chin up. She leaned down, slotting their lips together in a slow, tender kiss before pulling back.

 

Mikaela grit his teeth and yanked Yuuichirou back by the shoulders. “That’s enough. We can translate from now on.”

 

"I-I'm..." Yuuichirou really couldn't seem to form words. He was too tired to process anything and he felt a little guilty because he was pretty sure he responded to Horn's kiss by reciprocating it. However, he didn't know if he actually had or not.... but the kiss had been really nice.

 

When he was yanked back by Mikaela, he immediately snapped out of it.

 

"Oh, My name is Yuu..." He finally said.

 

Both of the girls were really pretty and his face was really red. He tried to fight back the feeling of being flustered but, alas, no matter how hard he tried, he just couldn't.

 

"I'd... rather have a translator..." Yuuichirou admitted, agreeing with Mikaela and subconsciously stepping closer to him. "It is a pleasure to meet the both of you, though."

 

“Oh, alright,” Chess shrugged, eyeing Mikaela suspiciously. “What’s got you so ruffled, Mikaela?”

 

Mikaela tensed, feeling his skin grow hot with embarrassment. There was no need to get angry over their own customs; but now that he knew the significance of kissing for humans, he was feeling really defensive and having an urge to keep Yuuichirou’s lips untouched by everyone but himself.

 

Still… he couldn’t explain that to Chess and Horn without sounding silly. Mikaela shook his head. “It’s nothing…” He glanced down at the fruits beside them that he brought along. “Ah, right. Have some!” He kneeled down and stood with the basket once more, allowing Chess and Horn to take some of the fruits and bite into them.

 

Mikaela then turned and offered the basket to Yuuichirou. “Want to try, Yuu-chan?”

 

Yuuichirou had stepped back and was watching Mikaela quietly when he was offered some fruit. He was a little skeptical and hesitant about even grabbing one of the fruits, but he did so anyways just to keep himself quiet about how Mikaela was acting.

 

As he bit into it, his eyes widened a little bit. It was really sweet, but it was a bit too tangy, too. He munched on it regardless while the others talked.

 

He knew there were eyes on him, and he tried to ignore it.

 

"Delicious as always..." Chess hummed, a bit of the juice escaping her mouth. "Your mother should retire and be a farmer instead of a vet,” she suggested, eyes widening at the thought of all the food Krul would possibly grow.

 

"Why not both...?" Yuuichirou murmured.

 

“He has a point!” An unfamiliar voice joined the conversation. Mikaela and the others turned to greet Lacus and his closest companion, René. “It’s nice to see the alien again.”

 

“Oh, you know him already?” Chess tilted her head.

 

“Of course he does, how else would he have a suit?” Horn said, lightly nudging Chess on the shoulder.

 

“Oh, right…” Chess laughed. René quietly looked over the group, then his eyes settled on Yuuichirou. He stared, blinking curiously. Lacus murmured something to his ear, and Mikaela caught on that it was in their tongue and not in Japanese.

 

“I’m sure translating to René will not be an issue,” Mikaela said, a tense smile on his face as his tail flicked irritably.

 

“Oh, but he’s not turning to his natural color anymore,” Horn said, reaching out to cup Yuuichirou’s face. “He’s so sickly pale…”

 

“Wait, it’s reddening again!” Chess squealed. “We’re healing him!”

 

“Really?” Horn blinked, staring as Yuuichirou became a more reddish-pink. “Oh, you’re right!”

 

“No, no!” Mikaela hissed, shoving the fruit basket into René’s arms without thinking and shoving his way in between them and Yuuichirou. “He’s not supposed to be that red all the time!”

 

Yuuichirou stumbled back a bit. He had to reach out and grab onto something to keep himself balanced. That happened to be Mikaela.

 

With his hands sort of gripping Mikaela's waist, he peeked over the blond's shoulder and rested his chin there, mainly because he was so sleepy.

 

He was only awake because of all the commotion.

 

"He isn't...?" Chess said quietly. She played with her hair and frowned at Mikaela.

 

"You're being awfully defensive." Lacus quirked a brow at him. He went to step forward but René grabbed his hand so Lacus stayed put.

 

"Mm... Mika, it's okay," Yuuichirou murmured.

 

Mikaela felt his skin warm again, causing a soft glow to emit from his face. In his own language, he said to them, “Yuu-chan είναι ο άνθρωπος μου, οπότε μην τον αγγίζετε περισσότερο από ό, τι είναι απαραίτητο.”

 

Chess’s eyes widened. “Είναι ο σύντροφος σου, Μικαέλα?”

 

Mikaela felt his heart slam his chest at the thought.

 

Chess had asked if Yuuichirou was his mate.

 

Mikaela felt his entire body heat and he glowed brightly. It even caught the attention of some passerbys. “Μη λέτε μια λέξη, αλλά θα ήθελα…” Mikaela weakly said, his tail winding around Yuuichirou, who was behind him still.

 

“Καλή σου τύχη,” René said softly, bowing his head. Mikaela fidgeted, feeling flustered from talking about such a thing right in front of Yuuichirou, even though he could not understand.

 

Yuuichirou frowned at not being able to understand them, but he didn't want to intrude, either. His hands ended up wrapping around Mikaela from behind, leaning against him more and tucking his head against the other's shoulder.

 

He had to fight to keep his eyes open. Yuuichirou was too comfortable about holding onto Mikaela.

 

He suddenly jumped at a loud sound and cheering not too far off. Yuuichirou immediately pulled away and looked around.

 

"Is someone celebrating too hard or do you have fireworks?" Yuuichirou looked over at them. He wasn't red anymore, even though he had been holding Mikaela in public.

 

“Fireworks… I think our word is Σπινθήρες,” Mikaela said. “Spinthíres.”

 

“Oh, we’re going to see the Spinthíres?” Lacus said, a bright smile on his face. “Count me in!”

 

“We’ll go, too!” Chess added, and Horn nodded alongside her. Mikaela sighed and reluctantly agreed, although he had wanted to get away from them to spend time alone with Yuuichirou. He had envisioned that maybe just he and Yuuichirou could enjoy the Spinthíres together.

 

Which was… an odd thought for Mikaela to have. The viewing of the Spinthíres and making wishes underneath their sparkles was a social activity, to be done surrounded with companions. But for the first time, Mikaela wanted to be with Yuuichirou, and Yuuichirou alone.

 

He was thinking more and more like a human the closer he got to Yuuichirou, it seemed.

 

Mikaela guided Yuuichirou over to the soft patches of grass where he and the others planned to sit and watch the Spinthíres. When they sat down, a few other Foteinós came by and offered them some fruits. Mikaela traded his fruits for theirs, and handed them to Yuuichirou to try new things.

 

"Spinthíres..." Yuuichirou tried to pronounce. He couldn't quite get it but he didn't worry too much about it because Mikaela had handed him some more fruit.

 

He was quite hungry. As the lights went off and exploded in the sky into a shimmering of sparkles,  Yuuichirou munched on whatever fruit Mikaela and the others gave him.

 

"Yuu, right...,?" René sat down on the other side of the human. He curled his tail around himself. It was odd to see René away from Lacus.

 

"Yeah, that's me." Yuuichirou smiled a little. "You're... René?"

 

René smiled back at him. "It's nice to meet you, though... I'd be careful, I know it seems lax here but, be careful who sees you."

 

Yuuichirou blinked at him, then grinned. “Don’t worry. Mika will make sure I’m okay. And I’ve got his back, too!” He held a thumbs up, to which René stared at blankly. He slowly tried to mimic the gesture, unsure of its meaning.

 

“So far, it seems you don’t stick out too terribly from the rest of us…” René observed, his eyes lazily scanning the people around them. “Despite your lack of tail… but it’s possible for Foteinós to be born without them, or for them to be severed in an accident, so it is likely no one has truly noticed your alien species from a distance.” René looked up to the glimmering sky as he added, “The only giveaway might be your pale complexion and black hair.”

 

Yuuichirou reached up to scratch at his head self-consciously. He chuckled lightly, “Yeah, I guess I stand out a lot more here than I do in Japan…” Suddenly, Yuuichirou’s eyes snapped open wider. “Wait, how do you know Japanese? You didn’t… k-kiss me, so-”

 

René’s tail flicked suddenly, then curled around tighter about his seated body. “From Lacus…” René murmured. “So that I could still communicate with you… and so Mikaela would not be upset with me.”

 

“Ohhh…” Yuuichirou nodded. So it seemed that Foteinós could learn new languages from each other by kissing anyone who knew the language. It was quite fascinating to learn that fact. He absently wondered if Mikaela could speak English too, since that was another subject Yuuichirou excelled in.

 

He tilted his head as he bit into another juicy fruit. René glanced at Mikaela then to Yuuichirou. Then, he shuffled closer and leaned in.

 

"How do you feel about him?" René said quietly.

 

Yuuichirou stopped, gradually lowering the fruit down and looking up at René as another explosion erupted in the sky. He felt his heart beat pick up and an odd feeling started tightening his chest.



"I... I don't know what you're talking about,” he said quickly after another moment passed.

 

Mikaela suddenly spoke up, noticing the two sitting so close and Yuuichirou's nervous behavior. "Everything okay, Yuu-chan?" Concern was clear in his voice. Yuuichirou didn't know why until he realized the fruit he was holding had dropped into the grass. He was also much closer to René than before.

 

Yuuichirou hastily picked it up and smiled at Mikaela, though it appeared a little strained. "I-I'm fine..." His voice sounded shaky.

 

Mikaela noticed that the edges of Yuuichirou’s eyes were pinkish and his vision seemed blurry. He blinked, realizing that the days on Iridýon were longer than those on Earth… and that humans needed to sleep quite often.

 

His eyebrows furrowed. “Yuu-chan, when was the last time you slept…?” He continuously fed Yuuichirou to keep his energy going, but it seemed that he needed more rest than Mikaela accounted for.

 

“Not long ago! I’m fine, really…” Yuuichirou tried to argue, but his body swayed slightly. Mikaela came closer immediately, catching Yuuichirou in his arms. Alarm made the fur at the end of his tail bristle.

 

“Yuu-chan!” Mikaela scolded. “You need to sleep…!”

 

Yuuichirou couldn't bring himself to argue, but he moved to push himself away regardless. He could stay awake a little longer to enjoy the festivities. At least, that's what he tried to tell himself.

 

"I'd like to finish watching the... the sp- uhm, fireworks before I sleep. I've always loved them." He yawned, hugging his knees.

 

Despite Yuuichirou's words, Mikaela could clearly see he was falling asleep where he was sitting. With a sigh and a flick of his tail, Mikaela shifted off the grass and gathered the human into his arms.

 

"I'm fine," Yuuichirou argued quietly. He felt himself tucking his face into Mikaela's neck. He inhaled, enjoying the alien's foreign scent.

 

Mikaela disagreed with a hum. “You need rest, Yuu-chan.” He continued to carry Yuuichirou away; the human’s weight didn’t bother him, since Foteinós were naturally stronger. In fact, he quite liked it, since he got to be so physically close to Mikaela. He liked the warmth of Yuuichirou’s breath near his neck and the feel of his body curled in his arms.

 

The walk back to Mikaela’s home was not a long one, and once inside, Mikaela wondered where Yuuichirou would sleep. Foteinós beds were not quite the same as human ones, though Mikaela would argue that Foteinós beds were more comfortable. They had built-in temperature control, so they would automatically warm or cool down to keep the body temperature stable.

 

Mikaela remembered that an intimate thing for humans was sleeping together. This was also intimate for Foteinós, however it was done platonically more often than not.

 

But this time… Mikaela felt a strange, fluttery feeling in his chest. This was a romantic sort of intimacy he was feeling. He could sleep with Yuuichirou like… a mate would.

 

Mikaela gulped, willing himself not to glow so brightly in the darkness of his home. He laid Yuuichirou down and nestled close to him, though his tail perked with surprise when his eyes met with a pair of green ones.

 

“Yuu-chan, you’re awake?” Mikaela murmured softly to his sleepy companion.

 

Yuuichirou gave the slightest of nods and shifted a little closer to Mikaela. He could see Mikaela glowing faintly and part of him wanted for Mikaela to glow brighter. He wanted Mikaela wrapped around him; whether it was because he was really sleepy or because he was too tired to keep his walls up.

 

He lifted his hand, placing it against the side of Mikaela's face in a caress.

 

"Mika..." He whispered, bringing his face closer to the other's. With their noses bumping together and Mikaela trying not to pull his face away, Mikaela let out a nervous breath. They both wanted this.

 

It was gentle at first; Yuuichirou's lips pressing against Mikaela's as a soft sigh left the human's nose. The quiet sound of lips smacking. Yuuichirou, as tired as he was, moved closer and slid his arms around Mikaela. He even hiked up a leg around Mikaela's, trying to get him closer.

 

Yuuichirou felt so drowsy...

 

Mikaela’s tail quivered and stuck out in a straight line with his surprise at first. Then as the warm pleasure began to heat his skin, his tail curled slowly and began to flick with contentment.

 

Mikaela never knew kissing could feel so good. He never knew physical intimacy was something that could be delved into all the time, whenever they wanted… he never knew there was more to mating than reproduction. This blossoming, strong feeling in his heart that made his entire body glow was something he was never told about.

 

Mikaela crawled on top of Yuuichirou, lightly pressing his knee between Yuuichirou’s thighs as he did so. He angled his head, kissing Yuuichirou a bit deeper, a soft moan sounding in his throat. Everything felt warm and comfortable, and as soon as he flicked his tongue against Yuuichirou’s lips, he realized the human beneath him had gone still.

 

Mikaela pulled back slowly, blinking blearily down at him as he asked, “Yuu-chan…?”

 

But Yuuichirou’s eyes were closed and his lips were parted, still slightly shiny from their kissing.

 

He had fallen asleep.

 

Mikaela smiled down at him, a sound similar to a cat’s purr suddenly coming from his lips. Mikaela paused, a bit flustered- Foteinós only made those sounds when they were at their absolute happiest. His tail flicked with embarrassment and he laid down next to Yuuichirou, cuddling close to his heated body and feeling content enough to drift off into a peaceful slumber.

 

 

Yuuichirou had forgotten how nice sleep felt, especially after long days like that. He felt so comfortable in Mikaela's arms that he snuggled closer in an attempt to fall back to sleep.

 

It was in vain. His bladder soon reared its head and his hopes of falling back to sleep were shattered because of the intense need to pee. Yuuichirou sighed and maneuvered himself out of Mikaela's arms before he lightly shook the alien.

 

All he received from Mikaela was a grunt.

 

"Mika, I have to pee,” he whined.

 

Yuuichirou didn't have a clue as to where the bathroom was. Giving up, Yuuichirou clambered out of the weirdly designed bed and decided to find the bathroom himself. He was careful not to open any doors he wasn't supposed to.

 

Yuuichirou cheered himself when he found it and made quick work of unzipping his suit to relieve himself after shutting the door.

 

It wasn't long before he returned to Mikaela's room and into his bed. Yuuichirou kept his distance however due to memories of what he'd done before falling asleep.

 

By then, Mikaela had been woken up by the movement in his bed. Unknowing that Yuuichirou was trying to create space between them, he rolled over and tugged Yuuichirou close to him so that his body curled around Yuuichirou’s. The human’s back pressed against Mikaela’s front, and Mikaela’s tail wound around Yuuichirou’s hip for extra security.

 

Mikaela nuzzled into the back of Yuuichirou’s head, content with the scent of his hair as he basked in the threshold between consciousness and unconsciousness.

 

It was warm and cozy and he never wanted to leave where he was now. He wouldn’t mind sleeping more often if it would be like this.

 

"Hey... uhm, Mika..." Yuuichirou started, feeling uncomfortably warm now. His heartbeat picking up wasn't helping the feeling. He tried to wiggle his way away from Mikaela but, ultimately, being held felt too nice.

 

He was still a bit sleepy, but not enough to allow him to fall back to sleep easily. Even closing his eyes would feel really nice yet he didn't allow himself to do so. "Mika, can you loosen up a bit or back up...?" He asked, hoping Mikaela was actually awake enough to hear him.

 

Brief images of Mikaela climbing on top of him poured into his mind and made him feel funny. His fingers curled into fists and he tried to hide his face into the bed. Yuuichirou wanted to hide beneath a blanket and away from Mikaela.

 

His tired self hadn't been too worried about the possible outcomes; he just knew that he wanted Mikaela.

 

But I can't want him... Yuuichirou reminded himself, lips pursing as he stared down at his hand.

 

Mikaela was still too sleepy to really register what Yuuichirou was saying. He mumbled, “Τόσο χαριτωμένο, Yuu-chan…” He hadn’t realized he spoke in his own language.

 

Purely driven on instinct, Mikaela ducked his head lower, lazily pressing kisses on the back of Yuuichirou’s neck. His tail began to stroke up and down Yuuichirou’s side. It was a lazy, light and delicate sensation that was pleasing to Mikaela as well.

 

“σε θέλω…” Mikaela murmured drowsily, parting his lips more to suck on Yuuichirou’s skin. His tongue snuck out and he licked at it, gradually nipping the same spot and making a dark mark. “Σας θέλω ως σύντροφό μου…”

 

Yuuichirou tensed up, eyes widening a bit. He didn't know what Mikaela was saying, but he did know what Mikaela was doing. He couldn't stop the shiver that ran through his body or the way Mikaela's lips made his skin feel alight... how it made his body tingle and heat up, goosebumps prickling his skin, despite not being cold.

 

He could, however, fight back the noise that wanted to escape from his throat. He could definitely push away from Mikaela. Yet, he almost didn't...

 

Panic welling up from being overwhelmed and confused, Yuuichirou suddenly pulled himself away from Mikaela forcefully, the blush on his face a dark red that reached his ears. His breathing was unsteady.

 

"Mika, I'm hungry."

 

He tried to divert all of Mikaela's intentions as if the previous actions hadn't really happened.

 

Mikaela was finally waking up now, surprised by the sudden way Yuuichirou separated from him. He rubbed at his eyes and looked at Yuuichirou, his head blank for a moment while he processed everything.

 

Was he… maybe crossing a line? Mikaela sat up slowly, looking down awkwardly. “Okay… we can eat.”

 

His heart suddenly felt heavy. Did Yuuichirou not… feel the same way? Humans were complex, complicated creatures- maybe Mikaela was simplifying his body language to something more basic than what it was.

 

It was possible that Yuuichirou liked Mikaela, but not enough to be mated to him for life. Mikaela didn’t understand that sort of temporary relationship known as ‘dating’ that some humans had, and the thought of being used only for some time made him feel… a little worthless.

 

His tail flicked sadly and he got up from the bed, walking silently to the kitchen.

 

Yuuichirou relaxed a little, but he picked up on Mikaela's sudden mood change. It was probably because Yuuichirou was being difficult and sending mixed signals. He watched Mikaela exit the room with a heavy heart full of guilt. He knew fully well that he was the cause of Mikaela's sudden bummed out mood.

 

He quickly climbed out of bed and hurried after him, pursing his lips as he walked behind the blond alien. Yuuichirou wasn't sure how to pick the mood back up but he could at least try.

 

"So... Mika..." He tried, stepping further so he was side by side with Mikaela. "Do you know what dancing is...?" He questioned.

 

Dancing was always a fun way to lighten things up again. Yuuichirou felt anxiety well up within him but he was able to ignore it, hoping Mikaela wouldn't brush him off or stay upset.

 

Mikaela had heard of dancing. He knew of it from what he observed of human culture, but he didn’t… quite understand. He hadn’t tried to dance before.

 

He figured Yuuichirou noticed his change in attitude, and he chewed his lip, feeling a little guilty. He didn’t want to be upset with Yuuichirou, but he was frustrated that this was happening. If only such complicated things like love and romance weren’t affecting him, then maybe it would be easier for him to be around Yuuichirou.

 

“I don’t know much about it,” Mikaela admitted softly. He was in the kitchen now with Yuuichirou, not really looking at his human companion.

 

Yuuichirou lowered his gaze in slight guilt, feeling a bit anxious to see Mikaela smiling again. He pursed his lips in thought.

 

"Would..." He hesitated, his face turning a little red before he smiled sheepishly. "Would you like to dance with me...?"

 

The silence between them stretched and Yuuichirou quickly back pedaled when he didn't get an immediate response. "I-If you would like, and, of course after we eat!" He stepped away from Mikaela in case the other wanted a bit of space between them. Yuuichirou couldn't help but to nervously start playing with his hair and fidgeting.

 

Mikaela blinked at him, his tail waving with question. Yuuichirou was once again being shy and adorable to him- what did he truly want? He wasn’t sure, but he turned back to their stash of food, pulling out a few things that might satisfy Yuuichirou.

 

“Sure… but eat up first,” Mikaela encouraged him. “This stuff is the meat of an animal here. It should taste similar to Earth’s animal, chicken.” He prepared it in a matter of minutes and supplied Yuuichirou with a juice drink as well. He ate his own food alongside Yuuichirou; he was curious about this ‘dancing’ that Yuuichirou wanted to do.

 

He had seen it before, but he knew ‘dancing’ was a pretty broad term. There was all sorts of dancing on Earth, right? Which kind did Yuuichirou want to do?

 

They had finished their meals so Mikaela took the dishes and washed them quickly. It only took a few seconds to completely wash and dry dishes here; he was always amazed that it took humans so long to clean their things. It was much more tedious for humans; and it seemed that was the general nature of human technology. It just wasn’t as fast.

 

Then, he stood beside Yuuichirou, more curious now than anything else about whatever Yuuichirou was about to teach him.

 

Maybe dancing was something intimate to Yuuichirou. Did it mean something about bonding? Was it… perhaps, some sort of necessary mating ritual? Maybe that’s why Yuuichirou pulled away in the morning; because dancing was a step they had to complete first. Mikaela’s head buzzed with questions and he blinked at Yuuichirou, his pupils wide with interest.

 

Yuuichirou watched Mikaela's subtle changes in his facial expressions and he couldn't help but laugh a bit to himself. He moved so he was standing in front of Mikaela and he guided the other's hands into the right positions; one on his hip and the other in Yuuichirou's hand.

 

"Sorry but... I only know slow dancing, though typically you just move to the sound of music..." He explained, looking down at the both of their feet nervously.

 

Yuuichirou licked his lips before he began to move, despite there being no kind of music playing. "Or... you can just get lost in your own music and dance..." He continued, lifting his gaze to Mikaela and offering a bright smile.

 

Mikaela blinked, silently taking in the experience. He stepped awkwardly, not entirely sure if he was doing it right. Yuuichirou wasn’t scolding him or correcting him, so he supposed if he mimicked what Yuuichirou did, he would be alright.

 

“Why do humans do this?” Mikaela wondered out loud, his eyebrows tensing as they circled around. His sense of balance was slightly off, so he kept teetering one way or the other, but Yuuichirou kept straightening him up.

 

It wasn’t like he disliked the dancing; he just didn’t understand what it was accomplishing. But he had to admit, being so physically close to Yuuichirou during this was enjoyable. His tail flicked slightly with contentment.

 

"Because it's fun." Yuuichirou beamed up at him once more. He didn't mind correcting Mikaela here and there or helping him follow his own steps. "It's nice being around someone. Dancing with a partner is better than dancing by yourself."

 

He gave a sheepish laugh, remembering the times when Guren walked into his room without knocking to catch him jamming out to music. He looked away, his smile softening. He was content with being near Mikaela.

 

His fingers curled against the bare skin showing on Mika's sides. "It's nice..."

 

Mikaela was suddenly very aware of Yuuichirou’s hands, his smile, his closeness. His heart thudded and he swallowed, blinking slowly as he took in Yuuichirou’s shy expression, his nervous quirks. He gripped Yuuichirou’s hand tighter.

 

“Yuu-chan… are you scared of something?” Mikaela asked slowly, suddenly noticing some things he hadn’t noticed before.

 

Was it possible that Yuuichirou actually wasn’t against being his mate at all, but instead was just… afraid? Unsure? Mikaela wanted to ease his worries and he tilted his head, trying to find the truth in Yuuichirou’s stunning green eyes.

 

Yuuichirou paused in his steps and stopped moving. He fell silent but he let go of Mikaela's waist and moved to take both of Mikaela's hands into his own as he looked down at them. He fought down the feeling of his throat closing up.

 

It took him a couple of attempts but he looked up at Mikaela finally and made eye contact, holding it despite the nervous flit of his eyes.

 

"I... maybe a-a little..." Yuuichirou gave a half smile before it disappeared and he looked away, letting go of Mikaela's hands as he stepped back slightly. He rubbed at his arm, feeling a bit awkward.

 

Mikaela watched as Yuuichirou shifted around, clearly being found out by Mikaela’s assumption. Mikaela felt his heart twist slightly in pity. He didn’t want Yuuichirou to be scared of him, of… them, as a couple.

 

Mikaela’s eyes softened and he stepped closer, taking Yuuichirou’s hands in his own again. He gripped them tightly and sucked in a breath. “Yuu-chan… I don’t know much about love and romance for humans. I’m… new to all of this. But I know that… I want to try this with you. I want to feel these things you humans rave about, these strong emotions unlike any other.” His eyes shimmered with excitement. “I’m nervous too, but… can’t we try?”

 

"I-I'm not afraid to be with you, I'm... afraid we won't always be around each other,” Yuuichirou explained. “We live billions of lightyears away from each other." Yuuichirou's eyes became blurry as tears prickled and threatened to form and fall down his cheeks.

 

He stopped himself and looked away, taking a moment to clear his mind. Talk about long distance, he mentally laughed, a smile quirking at his lips as he managed to look up at Mikaela again.

 

"Sorry, I'm still a bit tired... uhm..." He shifted, gripping Mikaela's hands. "Fine... we'll... we'll try, alright?" Yuuichirou's voice wavered. "Obviously I'm attracted to you, in both ways but... I'll probably still have doubts. But you're just too adorable..."

 

Mikaela smiled a bit, not totally understanding but grasping enough to get Yuuichirou’s meaning. “Does that mean… we’re in a special relationship that we have with no one else?” Mikaela’s eyebrows suddenly tensed. “I don’t want to share with anyone, Yuu-chan.”

 

He couldn’t imagine anyone else doing things like kissing Yuuichirou like they had kissed. He didn’t like the thought of anyone else being as close to Yuuichirou like Mikaela was. It made his stomach twist uncomfortably. No, Yuuichirou was his human.

 

"No, no one else can have this relationship with me," Yuuichirou assured with a laugh. He rubbed at his eyes and brought his hands up to Mikaela's face.

 

Then, Mikaela puffed his cheeks slightly in disagreement to Yuuichirou’s earlier statement.

 

“If anything, Yuu-chan, you’re the adorable one. You’re… tiny.” Mikaela grinned. Yuuichirou wasn’t much smaller than he was in height, but Mikaela was just larger, being a Foteinós and all. Humans were smaller than his species on average, albeit some exceptions.

 

"I'm not tiny, you're just big,” Yuuichirou defended playfully as he made Mikaela lean down as he leaned up. Their noses brushed before Yuuichirou pressed his lips against the alien's, closing his eyes and rubbing his thumbs across Mikaela's cheeks.

 

He couldn't stop the wide smile spreading over his lips.

 

Mikaela felt his heart soar at the sudden, tender kiss. His eyes slid shut and he hummed softly, his tail waving contentedly as he kissed Yuuichirou back.

 

It would have continued were it not for someone clearing her throat. Mikaela pulled back slowly, turning his slightly dazed eyes to Krul, who had just stepped into the kitchen with her eyes narrowed.

 

“Mikaela, you shouldn’t be thinking about such things so early in your life,” Krul said immediately, cutting straight to the point. “I can see the way your tail is curling. Mating is something to be done when you’re older.”

 

Mikaela squinted at her stubbornly. “I’m old enough to the humans.”

 

“You’re only five,” Krul argued.

 

“That’s not the same as five on earth,” Mikaela huffed. He looked back to Yuuichirou apologetically. “Let’s go elsewhere.”

 

Krul turned her nose away, clearly not approving yet, but Mikaela wouldn’t let that stop him from being close to Yuuichirou as he was.

 

“Sorry about that,” Yuuichirou murmured softly, gripping Mikaela’s hand. “I didn’t mean to get you in trouble.”

 

Mikaela shook his head. “She’s just protective of me. It’s nothing to worry about.” He smiled to Yuuichirou as they settled back into his room. “So… what now, Yuu-chan?”

 

Yuuichirou froze up, his heart suddenly pounding at the slight implication of Mikaela’s words. They were alone, in Mikaela’s bedroom after establishing their status as… lovers.

 

“Do we mate now?” Mikaela asked, his pupils round with question.

 

Yuuichirou made a small yelping sound of surprise, then slapped his palm over his mouth.

 

Yuuichirou tried to think of a way to answer Mikaela’s proposal. His lips parted uncertainly and he froze up, his face reddening with embarrassment.

 

Why did I do this to myself…

Chapter Text

"L-like... now ...?" Yuuichirou squeaked out, scooting back when Mikaela leaned closer to him like he was about to crawl over towards him.

 

Yuuichirou brought a hand up to his face to hide it, his face burning up to his ears and down his neck. He felt so flustered, he thought he'd faint. Which was a bit silly considering he wasn't a stranger to sexual things, even if it mostly only involved himself.

 

"You waste no time..." He nervously laughed, placing a hand on Mikaela's chest to keep him back. "Kissing is fine!" He hurried out, trying to clarify things up. He licked his lips and swallowed, looking away. "Don't rush into things..." He huffed out, covering his face further.

 

Yuuichirou wouldn't mind taking things that far right now, but he just felt a bit overwhelmed from how blunt and straightforward Mikaela was. Mikaela really didn't beat around the bush about what he wanted.

 

He was also a bit nervous about Krul from earlier still. Was it really too early for Mikaela...?

 

Mikaela smiled lightly. “I’m not rushing… I’m only doing what my instincts are telling me to do.” He licked his lips, his eyes unashamedly looking down at Yuuichirou’s mouth. He now had Yuuichirou up against the wall and he paused, his fluffy blond tail-tip flicking side to side.

 

“You said kissing was fine, so we can continue…?” He asked, taking in the redness of Yuuichirou’s face and neck. He wanted to press his lips all over his blushing skin and feel the heat radiating from him. Yuuichirou’s heat was so addictive and so unusual to him, since he came from a species that was used to the cold.

 

He hadn’t realized the pleasure of warmth until he was on Earth, until he was pressed to Yuuichirou. There were all different kinds of warmth and Mikaela sort of missed it over on the other planet, where the weather was tropical compared to Iridýon.

 

Yuuichirou sputtered as he tried to think of something to say, but to no avail. The close proximity between the two of them had Yuuichirou trying to press himself against the wall as much as he could because having Mikaela so close to him like this did funny things to his heart.

 

He didn't hate it or anything; he was just a bit too nervous and had a habit of holding himself back.

 

Letting out a breath he didn't know he was holding, Yuuichirou gave a slow nod, not breaking their eye contact. His skin already felt a little too warm so the feeling of Mikaela's cool skin started to feel really nice. At least, where they were currently touching.

 

Mikaela had really long, blond lashes and Yuuichirou became more distracted by the blue of his eyes than by how Mikaela leaned in until their noses were almost touching. Mikaela really was adorable; it made Yuuichirou's heart twist and flutter.

 

Yuuichirou let out a sudden heavy breath as if he had broken down his own walls and his hands shot up and grabbed Mikaela's shoulders. He leaned up and pressed his mouth to Mikaela's, eyes immediately closing.

 

Mikaela’s eyes closed as well, a pleasant hum sounding in his throat as he kissed Yuuichirou back. He supposed that was the answer to his question in the end. His tail waved and curled as it did when he felt this type of pleasure, his skin beginning to glow lightly.

 

The feeling of Yuuichirou’s lips against his own was pleasant, warm, tingly. He loved it, but he loved their deeper kisses even more. This led Mikaela to licking at the seam of Yuuichirou’s lips, a small smile growing at the edges of his mouth when Yuuichirou opened up for him.

 

He pushed his tongue inside, only letting half of it inside for now. That was enough to fill all of Yuuichirou’s small mouth; his entire tongue was enough to reach the back of his throat.

 

Mikaela pushed his tongue in and out, in and out, mimicking what he wanted to do… elsewhere. His eyes opened just slightly to admire the way Yuuichirou’s skin burned red and how his eyebrows tensed tightly with arousal. It was really too adorable for words… Mikaela almost couldn’t get enough.

 

With shaky breaths, Yuuichirou moved his hands and gripped them into Mikaela's hair in a tight hold, only for a moment until his hands migrated down and around the other's waist, pressing Mikaela closer to him.

 

It was too overwhelming, still. He wanted more, but his feelings were clashing and he became confused. Even Mikaela's devilishly talented tongue that worked him into shivers as it brushed along his own and all around his mouth couldn't distract him.

 

Yuuichirou pulled away with a gasp suddenly and he hid his face in Mikaela's chest.

 

"I can't..." His voice cracked. "I can't decide if this is a good idea or not; I don't want my heart torn apart and I..." he curled his fingers into Mikaela's suit. "I can't leave my family and friends- and you have people here you care about, too; you're being chased and if somethings happens... I can't, Mika."

 

He leaned his head back and looked up at Mikaela. His eyes were shimmering with tears. Yuuichirou felt so confused and unsure about this… No matter how much he tried, he couldn't stop his worries from getting to him.

 

"What if we're separated... what if I lose everyone..." he moved his hands back to Mikaela's face and he bumped his forehead against the alien's chin.

 

Mikaela understood his pain, his fear. He didn’t, at first, understand what it had to do with them being mates. He watched as the tears rose in Yuuichirou’s eyes and shimmered, threatening to spill over. His heart twisted with pain, a desire to comfort Yuuichirou rising in him.

 

But then, it came together. Humans were different than Foteinós in that they mated for life. They held grand ceremonies known as weddings, and made vows to stay together until death.

 

That was something Foteinós had never heard of. Mikaela’s understanding of a mate was a one-time desire to reproduce, and in the case of same-sex mating, it was done to relieve the urge. After that, Foteinós usually didn’t mate ever again.

 

Yuuichirou wanted to be with Mikaela forever, possibly. He wanted more than just a mate, as a Foteinós would say. He wanted a permanent companion.

 

Mikaela didn’t know how to console him, how to tell him his worries and fears would be settled. Mikaela himself didn’t know the answer to the things Yuuichirou was concerned over. He simply guided Yuuichirou’s face up again to kiss his tear-stained lips.

 

Yuuichirou let Mikaela kiss him.

 

He wasn't forcing himself back anymore despite being upset. He sniffled when Mikaela broke the brief kiss and he knew his eyes were red and maybe even a bit puffy now. He moved to wipe at his eyes.

 

"You want a mate and I want a partner… I don't know the workings of your culture, but..." Yuuichirou looked back up at Mikaela. "I want you, always, and if I change my mind in the future then... we'll get to that, but I... don't want something temporary..."

 

He knew he was rambling but he couldn't help it. He fiddled with the belt that usually rested around Mikaela's waist. Mikaela had a very nice body and Yuuichirou kind of wanted to see it. He started chewing at his lip as he raked his eyes over Mikaela's body leaning toward him.

 

"You don't have to answer,” he murmured as he reached back up and wrapped his arms around the other's neck, watching Mikaela's blue eyes.

 

Mikaela noticed the way Yuuichirou looked at him, studying him with eyes so full of want. He wanted to do whatever Yuuichirou was implying as well.

 

Having a forever-mate didn’t sound so bad. Mikaela knew there was no such term, no such concept in his culture about a permanent mate. Love wasn’t impossible for Foteinós, but it was rare. When Foteinós loved each other, he supposed they were forever-mates as well.

 

Mikaela must be one of those rare cases. He put his arms around Yuuichirou for a moment, holding him and hugging his slightly smaller body as he murmured, “Είμαι ερωτευμένος μαζί σου.”

 

Knowing Yuuichirou couldn’t understand him, he released Yuuichirou’s body and held his hands, then backpedaled to the bed until he sat down, looking up into Yuuichirou’s eyes with a light smile on his lips. “I can tell you… what that means later on. But for now… I know I want you as my forever-mate… my companion… as well, Yuu-chan.”

 

"Then... will you be my partner...?" Yuuichirou paused, then shook his head, lacing their fingers together and sniffling again. "No, w-will you be my alien boyfriend?" He laughed, the blush coming back but he was smiling at Mikaela. He tried to make it sound a little silly.

 

Mikaela grinned at him, squeezing his hands as well. “Yuu-chan, that makes you my alien boyfriend as well.” His tail waved with amusement and he chuckled. “Is that the term you humans use? Boyfriend…? I thought it was… ah, a husband and bride…” Mikaela’s eyes widened. “Yuu-chan, you should be my bride, right?”

 

He thought deeper. “Wait, no, that’s for female humans… then, husband!” He beamed. “Is that what this is?”

 

Yuuichirou laughed suddenly and he shook his head. Mikaela’s implications and misunderstanding of relationships of his human culture tended to amuse him. A confused look crossed over Mikaela’s face and Yuuichirou crawled over as he stifled his laughter, sliding his hands up along the other’s legs.

 

“No,” he murmured, an amused smile playing over his lips as he took his bottom lip between his teeth. Yuuichirou glanced from Mikaela’s lips to his eyes frequently.

 

Foteinós were gorgeous creatures, and Mikaela was the finest specimen that Yuuichirou had seen so far…

 

He watched Mikaela tilt his head and Yuuichirou looked up in time to see blue pointed ears poking out from behind blond hair. Mikaela had some pretty big ears; Yuuichirou didn’t know how no one had noticed when they were on Earth. He loved them, though.

 

“You didn’t answer me, Yuu-chan… if it’s not… husbands, then... what is this...?” Mikaela asked. His tail curled and flicked as a sudden shudder of want rolled through him. It was Yuuichirou’s fault. The human had his hands running up and down along his thighs just above his boots.

 

“Lovers... Being my boyfriend means you can kiss me all you want and more,” Yuuichirou promised, leaning forward more and gradually creeping up into Mikaela’s lap. He was still quite nervous and his feelings were a mess, but he knew he wanted Mikaela and that was his goal right now.

 

Yuuichirou wanted to see Mikaela without anything on. He wanted to see how much skin were covered in those star-light, white freckles that dusted Mikaela’s cheeks. He wanted to see the base of Mikaela’s tail and how it connected, maybe even feel it.

 

Yuuichirou really just wanted to run his hands over Mikaela’s body.

 

Mikaela watched as Yuuichirou climbed toward him, all the more curious about Yuuichirou’s answer. Maybe everything would be fully explained later. For now, Mikaela had a growing need for Yuuichirou’s warmth against his skin.

 

“More...?” Mikaela tried, and Yuuichirou nodded with shy smile.

 

“In almost crude human terms... you can have sex with me.” Yuuichirou thought his face would burn off once those words left his lips.

 

Mikaela didn’t need an explanation as to what sex was.

 

A smile appeared over Mikaela’s mouth and he wasted no time in kissing Yuuichirou eagerly. He had to pull Yuuichirou closer to do so, gripping his shoulders. Mikaela’s hands didn’t stay in one place- they began to roam and found their way to Yuuichirou’s waist. Yuuichirou opened his mouth pliantly to accompany Mikaela’s tongue and groaned.

 

Yuuichirou loved Mikaela’s tongue and his kisses. It was so unnaturally long and foreign and it ignited an almost overwhelming feeling of heat within his groin.

 

He had been too afraid and timid about the growing attraction to Mikaela ever since Mikaela had crashed into his room. One worry was an internalized fear of the fact that Mikaela was another species, another worry was the fact that Yuuichirou still had no idea what was going on. He was more used to worrying about his schoolwork and space than he was worrying about his love and sex life, no matter how many times Shinoa and the others teased him for it.

 

Mikaela didn’t seem to have any qualms or worries about wanting to be with Yuuichirou, aside from the one fear of just having a short time fling, as they would call it, with him.

 

Yuuichirou’s worries were being drowned out by the tongue exploring his mouth and rubbing over his own. Part of him wanted the entire appendage down his throat, but he knew he’d choke so he didn’t ask. Instead, he sucked on what was already within his mouth. Having their tongues rubbing together had Yuuichirou feeling fuzzy and warm with sparks of heat shooting down his body. The heat grew and grew, clouding his mind and better judgement.

 

The glow emanating from Mikaela’s skin only grew brighter within the now somewhat dark room. Mikaela’s cold lips grew warm against Yuuichirou’s as they molded and parted with soft suckling sounds and smacks of lips.

 

Mikaela’s tail swayed upwards as he listened to the soft groans Yuuichirou graced upon his ears. They were delightful, and it spurred him on to push Yuuichirou down onto the bed. Yuuichirou’s arms found their way around Mikaela’s shoulders immediately, closing his lips around the long tongue invading his mouth and sucking.

 

He had a brief thought of sucking something else and the thought made his skin tingle. He didn’t know what kind of reproductive organ Mikaela even had, but if he could put it in his mouth, he’d probably be a bit too glad to do so.

 

He groaned. The need for Mikaela and to see him unclothed only grew and he started to grip and pull at Mikaela’s suit. They were both still wearing boots and it frustrated him because he couldn’t just pull off Mikaela’s clothing easily. Yuuichirou really didn’t want to pull away anytime soon; the heat was much too addicting.

 

Mikaela enjoyed having his tongue sucked on, especially when he peeked open his eyes and saw how gorgeously red Yuuichirou’s face was and the way his face contorted with want. He could feel his own arousal growing and he wanted Yuuichirou to feel it too… in more than just one way.

 

He carefully adjusted himself as he parted the kiss to settle between Yuuichirou’s legs. He could already imagine being inside the human. His instincts yelled at him to do it already and he wanted to do so, so very badly.

 

Mikaela’s pupils became dilated. Yuuichirou tried to chase after Mikaela’s lips but his head was suddenly tossed back against the bed with a broken gasp leaving him. Mikaela had begun to gyrate his hips down into Yuuichirou’s and the reaction and sounds he received for it were well worth it.

 

But those sounds…

 

The sounds leaving Yuuichirou... the way he moaned was not held back in the slightest. Mikaela wanted to keep those sounds for himself. He quickly decided to smash their lips together. Yuuichirou whimpered into his mouth as the pressure and friction against his dick only increased. Mikaela swallowed any sound he could to keep for himself.

 

“Θέλω μόνο να σας ακούσω,” Mikaela murmured against Yuuichirou’s red and swollen lips.

 

Yuuichirou shivered at the huskiness of Mikaela’s voice, raising his knees and pressing one against Mikaela’s side. He still couldn’t understand the Foteinós language, but he didn’t need to in order to know that it was almost possessive.

 

He had never felt like this with anyone. Yuuichirou’s skin felt like it was on fire and it was so wonderful.

 

“F-Fuck, no- Mika, come back!” Yuuichirou gasped out when Mikaela pulled away. He wanted to whine and he almost did.

 

As much as Mikaela wanted to give in and rut against Yuuichirou in the blissful heat, he wanted to do more.

 

His top priority at the moment was getting their boots off so he could discard their clothing. Mikaela watched as Yuuichirou’s chest rose and fell in quick successions as his hands reached up and pulled each boot off Yuuichirou’s legs. Trailing his gaze down a little further, he saw the clear excitement straining against the suit.

 

Mikaela licked his lips and Yuuichirou nearly whined in embarrassment.

 

Yuuichirou didn’t want to be stared at; he wanted Mikaela to get on with it. He craved being touched and it only became worse the longer things went on.

 

He shoved a pillow over his face to muffle himself. He couldn’t help how loud he was being; he just felt so sensitive with Mikaela’s hands now rubbing his thighs and palming at his erection. He didn’t see Mikaela lean down and kiss the inside of his suit-clad thigh, but he definitely felt it; along with the tongue that followed after.

 

Mikaela had to admit, he was becoming a little impatient. He wanted their clothing gone.

 

The pillows were suddenly thrown off the bed, leaving Yuuichirou without a secure way of hiding his face. Mikaela wouldn’t lean down enough for him to hide in the alien’s neck or shoulder.

 

“What if I need those?!” Yuuichirou protested. He pushed himself up and Mikaela leaned forward without hesitation.

 

Yuuichirou’s eyes suddenly threatened to fall shut as kisses were littered all along his neck. His suit became loose and he belatedly realized that Mikaela had unzipped him. The suit was gradually pulled down and the coolness of the air didn’t bother him because he felt way too warm and aroused.


He shivered from the feeling of Mikaela licking and sucking at the now exposed skin of his neck. It tickled and he wanted to push Mikaela away but at the same time, he wanted more. He wanted Mikaela to either bite down or suck as hard as he could on his skin. Yuuichirou craved another solid feeling of pure arousal and pleasure. His dick already began to ache.

 

“You won’t need them until after we’re done,” Mikaela whispered against his neck. “I’ll support your weight.” He promised and littered his neck with more kisses. He slipped his hands underneath Yuuichirou’s suit, pulling it down more as Yuuichirou tilted his head back and closed his eyes for a moment.

 

It almost sounded like Mikaela knew what he was doing.

 

Which, of course, he didn’t.

 

It all felt so good already either way; he was dying to know what it would feel like once Mikaela was actually fucking him.

 

Yuuichriou’s skin felt hot against the palm of Mikaela’s hands and lips. He didn’t know warmth could be so addicting- it made him crave Yuuichirou more. A possessive, growl-like groan bubbled up from Mikaela’s throat, sending shivers down Yuuichirou’s spine and causing his skin to erupt in goosebumps.

 

Yuuichriou loved the sound already.

 

“Yes...” He breathed, encouraging similar sounds from Mikaela.

 

With a sudden need to feel Mikaela’s skin, Yuuichirou reached around and began to pull Mikaela’s suit off, unzipping it as he went. Feeling the cool skin hidden beneath the clothing ignited more sparks throughout Yuuichirou’s body.

 

Chewing on his lip, Yuuichirou gently pushed Mikaela back and slipped his arms out from the sleeves of his own suit. Letting the suit pool around his waist, he left Mikaela with a nice view of his chest in which Mikaela immediately began to admire. Yuuichirou was definitely smaller than him frame-wise, but the muscles were there.

 

“Even with all that bad food, you’re so beautiful, Yuu-chan...” He whispered.

 

Yuuichirou didn’t know whether he should be offended or not so he rolled his eyes instead. He reached over and pulled off Mikaela’s gloves, then his suit. At least, up until the belt... Mikaela’s boots were going to make things difficult.

 

He had seen Mikaela naked from the waist up before, but now it was in a completely different light and Mikaela’s skin glowed this time. White specs littered and clustered around his hips and shoulders. Yuuichirou wanted to kiss every single one of them.

 

“You’re not bad yourself after all that chocolate,” Yuuichirou teased right back and they both grinned at each other.

 

In all honesty, Mikaela was stunning. They both thought the same of each other, and Mikaela’s glow only brightened more the longer he stared. He allowed his snake-like tongue to lick his lips as he thought about just how far they were going to take things.

 

“I want to see it,” Yuuichirou suddenly blurted out.

 

Mikaela paused, gradually sitting back on his heels. “See what…?”

 

Yuuichirou went to open his mouth but he covered it with his hand and looked away, fidgeting a bit. He wouldn’t lie; his mouth kept watering at the thought of giving Mikaela oral.

 

“U-uhm... Your…” Yuuichirou trailed off. He had no idea what to call it.

 

Mikaela smiled in slight confusion as he watched Yuuichirou closely. His tail swayed contently behind himself when he finally got what Yuuichirou meant. Heat rose to Mikaela’s face, but he was determined as well.

 

He shifted back enough to pull his boots off, then set them on the ground as Yuuichirou peeked up to watch Mikaela out of curiousness. Mikaela removed his belt and stood with his hands pausing on where the suit was bunched up at his waist. He turned to face Yuuichirou, and the human eyed the erection prodding through the fabric.

 

Anticipation began to rise within Yuuichirou.

 

Mikaela wasn’t moving fast enough, so Yuuichirou scooted towards him and reached out. With small tugs, Yuuichirou looked up at Mikaela’s face as he pushed down the suit all the way down his legs.

 

They both swallowed.

 

Slowly, Yuuichirou dropped his gaze down Mikaela’s chest whistle running his hands up over his cool skin. He noticed Mikaela didn’t have prominent nipples or a belly button. Yuuichirou kissed Mikaela’s navel anyway.

 

He felt Mikaela’s tail slide around his arm gradually the more Yuuichirou trailed his gaze down to the ‘v’ of Mikaela’s hips- and finally stopping at the length in front of him.

 

Foteinós really weren’t that different from humans...

 

“I don’t know why I expected it to not be blue...” Yuuichirou murmured, moving a hand to wrap it around Mikaela’s prick. He heard the other hiss at the contact and Yuuichirou felt his lips twitch upwards into a smile for a brief second.

 

Yuuichirou leaned in close and parted his lips. He brushed his mouth over the slightly more tapered head and stroked his hand along the ridged dick. It felt really nice and heavy in his hand.

 

“Y-Yuu-chan...” Mikaela breathed out, brows furrowed.

 

He wasn’t fully hard yet, but that gave Yuuichirou a reason to use his mouth on him.

 

Mikaela yelped as he was yanked back onto the bed and pushed down onto his back. Was this something mates did...?

 

“W-Wait, are you really putting your mouth o-on-” Mikaela shut himself up when Yuuichirou gave him a sharp and heated, almost desperate look.

 

Yes,” Yuuichirou breathed out, letting his breath roll over the foreskin of Mikaela’s dick.

 

Yuuichirou didn’t waste another moment. He laid between Mikaela’s legs and closed his mouth around the pleasantly different length.

 

How’d you end up with a dick in your mouth? Yuuichirou scolded himself but he could care less in the end. He was content with working his mouth around the gradually hardening length that fell heavy on Yuuichirou’s tongue.

 

Mikaela didn’t know where to hold onto. His breathing was suddenly short and he ended up raking his hands through his hair as he was attacked by the intensely pleasurable feeling.

 

“N-No, Yuu-chan, I...” He tried, but the words died on his tongue and were soon replaced with a moan. His hips rolled upwards into Yuuichirou’s mouth, feeling saliva dripping down the side of his dick. He didn’t care, though, it felt so nice

 

Hearing Mikaela’s moans brought back the heated feeling from earlier. Yuuichirou never realized he was rocking his hips into the bed as he sucked his new boyfriend off. The ridges along the sides of his dick…

 

They felt incredible... and, if he could without becoming frustrated, he’d spend as long as he could with Mikaela’s dick within his mouth.

 

Yuuichirou wanted it. He wanted it so badly and all thought of where he was or why were tossed out of the window and replaced with the intense need to have Mikaela fuck him.

 

He didn’t even care if Mikaela actually entered him or not, he just wanted to feel Mikaela’s dick in some way. Yuuichirou was honestly surprising himself with how lustful he could be.

 

He felt hands in his hair suddenly and Yuuichirou had to shove Mikaela’s hips down. As hot as it was to be throat-fucked slowly or otherwise, he wasn’t in a particular mood for gagging.

 

With a deep inhale as Yuuichirou pulled away, he picked up the slack by pumping his hand up and down along Mikaela’s length. He watched the way the foreskin bunched up then stretched out over and over while licking his lips and breathing heavily.

 

“Fuck, θέλω περισσότερα.”

 

Yuuichirou glanced up when he heard Mikaela murmuring things in the language he couldn’t comprehend. He sounded so breathless and frustrated.

 

Yuuichirou loved it.

 

He ran his tongue all along Mikaela’s dick before taking him back into his mouth. This earned another curse from Mikaela and Yuuichirou tried to not smile around the appendage currently preoccupying his mouth.

 

Yuuichirou began bobbing his head up and down, suckling at whatever he could and focusing on keeping his jaw open enough so he wouldn’t scrape his teeth over the sensitive skin of Mikaela’s sex. He could feel the ridges against the sides of his cheeks and tongue as he moved his head. His eyes fluttered shut.

 

Mikaela suddenly sat up and yanked Yuuichirou up, earning a yelp from the human as he had almost been choked from the sudden movement. Switching their positions, Mikaela shucked the rest of Yuuichirou’s suit off and tossed it onto the floor to be forgotten. Now that Yuuichirou’s skin had been exposed, Mikaela brushed his hands over Yuuichirou’s thighs and chest while eyeing the erect dick standing proudly between his legs.

 

Mikaela was a bit surprised that they were similar in many ways, but he absolutely adored how soft Yuuichirou looked.

 

“Don’t stare, just give it to me...” Yuuichirou panted out.

 

Mikaela looked up in time to see the human licking his lips and wiping the saliva away from his lips. His green eyes looked dark and clouded with lust and it made Mikaela’s insides burn with want. It made his dick ache. He wanted to put it inside of Yuuichirou as soon as possible.

 

Gathering Yuuichirou up, Mikaela had the other drape his legs over his shoulders so Mikaela had a perfect view of the puckered hole that he so badly wanted to push into. He understood enough to know that even same-sex Foteinós couples had other methods of penetration. With the both of them being males, Mikaela decided that he was going to claim Yuuichirou here.

 

“I’m going to...” Mikaela’s voice was deep. It was a promise. One that had Yuuichirou shivering in anticipation.

 

Yuuichirou wanted friction against his dick; he wanted the heat to fill his belly again with the promise of release. His hand shot up to grip his dick as he locked his ankles around Mikaela’s shoulders. He almost cried at the feeling.

 

His dick was so hard, it hurt to a point.

 

He started moving his hand to work on relieving a bit of the pressure- though his ministrations stuttered when he felt Mikaela’s tongue brushing over his ass and towards his hole. He felt Mikaela graze his teeth over his taint and Yuuichirou tried to not close his legs too much around Mikaela’s head.

 

Yuuichirou lowkey wished he still had a pillow to hide his face in, though.

 

“M-Mika- hha-!” Yuuichirou seized up and squeezed his eyes shut. Mikaela had pushed his tongue in just barely and Yuuichirou tried to squirm. Mikaela’s tail thumped against the bed every now and then before curling and uncurling. He pushed his tongue in a little further before pulling out then pushing back in...

 

He was pleased with the sounds Yuuichirou gave him. Neither of them seemed too worried about anyone hearing them, especially considering Yuuichirou had forgotten about Krul already.

 

“More…” Yuuichirou panted, quickening his stroke and building up the pleasure that pulled within his belly. He had to force himself to stop a few times so he wouldn’t orgasm too early, but it was so tempting… but denying himself was also a lot of fun, too. It only served to heighten his desire.

 

Mikaela peeked down at Yuuichirou and watched him tug at his own dick. Precum leaked over his hand and Mikaela wanted to taste it, but he was too busy tongue-fucking Yuuichirou’s ass.

 

“Yes… yes, fuck...” Yuuichirou’s eyebrows furrowed and his head tilted back.

 

Don’t cum, don’t cum, don’t cum, he told himself, over and over. He finally forced his hand away from his dick and gripped at the sheets instead. His hips rolled and twisted, searching for more pleasure and sweet, sweet friction.

 

Mikaela’s eyes became clouded over as he watched and listened to Yuuichirou. He pushed his tongue in as deep as it would go, the tip of it flicking the farthest part within Yuuichirou. The human gasped loudly and Mikaela wanted to smirk. He wanted Yuuichirou to scream out his name and his only. He wanted to be buried deeply into Yuuichirou and push in and out... In and out… Over and over.

 

It sounded so enticing. He wanted it.

 

Mikaela slipped his tongue out and pushed a finger in, hearing Yuuichirou’s breathing hitch. It stung a bit but it wasn’t bad. Pushing two inside earned a whimper as pain began to mix with pleasure that danced around Yuuichirou’s body and made him tingle all over.

 

Pulling away, Mikaela dropped him back down onto the bed and hurried to climb back over him. Yuuichirou opened his mouth greedily when Mikaela pressed their lips together again. Feeling Mikaela’s tongue again had Yuuichirou whining. Yuuichirou’s hands gripped Mikaela’s face, leaning up into the kiss so it was easier for him to suckle on Mikaela’s tongue. His hips bucked upwards and a gasp fell from his lips when their dicks brushed together.

 

He whispered harshly against Mikaela’s lips. He repeated his earlier words,“Give it to me.”

 

Mikaela’s tail flicked sharply and he slipped his hand down, positioning himself at Yuuichirou’s entrance. Yuuichirou silently hoped he was prepared enough to take Mikaela. He knew it was going to hurt either way.

 

Yuuichirou breathed in sharply, feeling Mikaela push in gradually. It stung. Mikaela was huge. Yuuichirou almost started tearing up because of it.

 

Even if they had properly prepped, it would’ve still killed him the moment Mikaela began to push in. Thankfully, Mikaela seemed to slip in easily thanks to his copious amount of saliva. It also seemed that Mikaela discharged more precum than Yuuichirou ever could.

 

Yuuichirou would’ve been interested about it if he didn’t have Mikaela’s dick currently stretching his ass open.

 

Mikaela then shoved himself the rest of the way in and Yuuichirou had to throw a hand over his mouth to keep himself quiet. He had lost himself a bit too much in the pleasure that he had forgotten to be careful.

 

“F-Fuck, go slow!” Yuuichirou scolded, legitimately tearing up now. It didn’t feel like anything had been torn, and he was too into things to make Mikaela stop. Regardless, the width of Mikaela felt incredible, especially for Yuuichirou's first time.

 

“Sorry…” Mikaela murmured sheepishly. He leaned down and nuzzled into Yuuichirou’s neck. With a sigh, Yuuichirou brought his hands up and ran his fingers through Mikaela’s hair as he adjusted and shifted to become at least a tad more comfortable.

 

“Just watch it next time...” He murmured into Mikaela’s hair. He felt a bit fuzzy about knowing that there was currently an alien... balls deep inside him. But even from inside he could feel those sinful ridges.

 

“Come on, come on...” Yuuichirou shifted, urging Mikaela to get moving. He wanted to know how it felt. He was too eager.

 

Mikaela huffed and pushed himself up onto his hands, pulling out a little bit before pushing back in. The movements were gentle, yet heat exploded throughout Mikaela’s body. It felt almost too overwhelming but he couldn’t get enough. How fast would Yuuichirou let him go?

 

Mikaela wanted to lose himself within the pleasure. His dick was snug and secured by Yuuichirou’s inner walls that clenched and unclenched around him.

 

He started moving in timid movements of his hips. His dick was already slippery with precum and saliva; it quickly became easy for him to push in and pull out over and over without it causing as much pain to his human.

 

My human, he thought possessively.

 

Yuuichirou gritted his teeth, not because of pain but because of how many time those perfectly shaped ridges bumped against his prostate. He’s used toys and such on himself before out of curiousity but this... felt utterly fantastic.

 

It was difficult to hold himself back from being foul-mouthed and trying not to orgasm when he was so so close to doing so.

 

“Oh, g-god...” Yuuichirou gripped a hand into his own hair, then wrapped a leg around Mikaela’s waist for a better angle and to feel more secure. The angle was perfect.

 

Yuuichirou didn’t know if it was because Mikaela’s dick was so well endowed with wonderfully pleasurable features, or if having sex just came too natural to the broader male- but he knew that he couldn’t even keep his eyes open anymore. He heard sounds, his own sounds. Moans and mostly whimpers of, “please, yes, more,” fell from Yuuichirou’s lips.

 

He’d later hate how vocal he was currently being.

 

He couldn’t believe he was doing this. He was having sex with an alien and he was nowhere near home, either. He couldn’t even believe he was having sex with someone to begin with.

 

If he were home, he’d brush all advances off so he could study some more, but he didn’t even have his books. All he was studying was how damn good Mikaela felt thrusting into him over and over despite the slight burning pain.

 

Even Mikaela couldn’t believe he was getting to do this. Yuuichirou was so tight around his dick that it spurred Mikaela on to move faster, pulling cries and keens from his human lover. Yuuichirou was being awfully loud, but Mikaela didn’t mind. Mainly because their panting and his own heartbeat sounded louder within his ears.

 

“Mika, M-Mika... Hn, please go faster...” Yuuichirou practically begged, sweat forming on his brow even though the air was cool.

 

Mikaela grunted and gathered Yuuichirou up into his arms, bending down at an angle that allowed him to pick up his thrusts. It left Yuuichirou almost speechless, as he couldn’t begin to even form a proper word or sound. Everything quickly became drowned out by the sound of skin slapping against skin and Yuuichirou’s broken moans accompanied by Mikaela’s groans and grunts.

 

Mikaela was so good… he felt so good inside of him, and Yuuichirou couldn’t get enough. He knew, however, that afterwards he’d be quite sore.

 

Yuuichirou locked his legs around Mikaela’s waist and it only took a couple more thrusts for Yuuichirou to reach his goal of climaxing. His thighs shook, as well as his entire body. Spurts of semen shot out between them and made a mess of Yuuichirou’s stomach, yet it didn’t compare to the mess Mikaela soon made.

 

Yuuichirou’s eyes shot open as he felt himself become filled with hot... Semen?

 

He could feel it dripping out and down his ass onto the bed. It would’ve been highly arousing if he hadn’t just climaxed and weren’t so sensitive. Yuuichirou still found himself groaning wantonly and rocking his hips either way.

 

In the height of his pleasure, it felt so good...

 

“Fuck...” Yuuichirou muttered softly, looking down between them but not letting Mikaela pull away. “... That’s so much...” He breathed out in amazement. Mikaela’s dick happened to be covered in his own mess, and then some.

 

“Ah...” Mikaela started but he was shaking too much from the aftershocks of pleasure that he flopped down and curled around Yuuichirou. He tried to curl his tail around the other, but he had a bit of trouble moving at all until the intense waves of pleasure began ebbing away.

 

“Mika...?” Yuuichirou blinked, lips pursing in unconcealed concern.

 

“I’m fine.” Mikaela hid his face into the human’s chest and held him close, keeping himself buried within Yuuichirou. “J-Just… tired,” he assured.

 

“Then why don’t we get some rest?” Yuuichirou suggested, patting Mikaela’s back gently. “After cleaning up…”

 

Mikaela hummed softly at the thought. They had just slept- and Foteinós didn’t sleep so often… but Mikaela had never mated before. He was exhausted- it took a lot out of him. He nodded in agreement, feeling his vision blur as he started to doze off.

 

“H-Hey, Mika…!” Yuuichirou protested softly. “You’re heavy…! Get off me first…”

 

“I will…” Mikaela murmured sleepily.

 

More silence stretched on. Mikaela still didn’t move. Yuuichirou groaned- this would take more effort than he thought. With a sigh, he decided to relax and wait for a moment, a content smile on his lips.

Chapter Text

Waking up was a bit of an effort, especially with Mikaela laying on top of him and the soreness pulsing through his body in a dull ache. Despite this, Yuuichirou felt it was nice waking up in Mikaela's arms, even if he felt disgustingly sticky around his groin and between his legs.

 

That was going to take awhile to get out, but Yuuichirou wanted to go back to sleep a little longer. Neither of them had moved much since they had suddenly fallen asleep after Mikaela hadn't moved off of him. He couldn't even remember when he had fallen asleep.

 

Yuuichirou's body protested, but he persisted and clenched and unclenched his fists to get the blood flowing through them again. With all the aches and pains in his body, he still felt pleasantly sated and content after everything that had happened earlier.

 

He almost couldn't believe what had transpired. And it had been amazing.

 

Yuuichirou suddenly felt giddy and he shifted underneath Mikaela to burrow his face into the alien's chest with a happy grin on his face. He wanted to just hold onto Mikaela and kiss him a lot now.

 

As he laid there, he could hear what sounded like birds. He had to remind himself that they weren't on Earth anymore. It was still pleasant to hear something that sounded like home, though. He felt like he was in such a good mood.

 

Mikaela begin to stir as well, his tail moving before anything else. It swished back and forth, clumsily bumping into whatever was in its way. He accidentally tickled Yuuichirou’s feet slightly, making the human beneath him squirm and laugh.

 

Mikaela’s eyes peeked open and he grinned, feeling Yuuichirou nuzzling into him and cuddling him. Although his body ached from their mating a few hours before, his heart was warm and he felt closer to Yuuichirou than he has ever been.

 

His mind was hazy, unaware and not worrying about anything else in the world right now. He rolled to his side, but his arms remained locked around Yuuichirou, a giddy smile on his face. “Yuu-chan… you’re so cute,” he murmured, affectionately nuzzling into Yuuichirou’s hair.

 

Yuuichirou tried to move his feet away from the tuft of Mikaela's tail. When it kept brushing against his feet and tickling him, he was convinced Mikaela was now doing it on purpose.

 

"Mika..." He whined through a laugh, smiling a little bit. He pressed a kiss to Mikaela's chest and held onto him while he rolled over to face him. Mikaela had finally moved off of him, but he suddenly wished Mikaela hadn't because it was so cold in the room.

 

He peeked up at Mikaela with a sleepy grin on his face. "You should really move your tail away from my feet."

 

Mikaela grinned softly, though behind his smile was mischief. He flicked his tail again, letting the bristly ends of them tickle the pads of Yuuichirou’s soft feet. “Why should I? Is it bothering you?” He asked innocently, but he was smiling uncontrollably.

 

Even Mikaela was a little chilly since his suit was off. Without their suits, their bodies didn’t adjust to the cooler temperature as easily. Mikaela groaned and threw his arm around Yuuichirou again, seeking his body heat. “I don’t wanna get up…” he protested, his mind still feeling groggy from their activities a few hours before.

 

Yuuichirou giggled and tried to move away from Mikaela the best he could. He managed to curl his feet into the sheets just as Mikaela moved to cling onto him. It didn't help that Mikaela was pretty cool to the touch, but at least he was warmer than the air.

 

"We have to, I don't wanna lie around with your..." Yuuichirou's face turned a slight shade of red. "Stuff... all over me, I want a shower,” he huffed out. Yuuichirou nosed at Mikaela's chin and kissed his neck before he managed to pull himself away from Mikaela. He felt very exposed and very cold.

 

"Do you not have any kind of blankets...?" Yuuichirou murmured. If he was handed one, he'd most likely lay back down and go to sleep. He'd be so comfortable…

 

“I do,” Mikaela answered, a soft sigh escaping his lips as he accepted the reality of the situation. They couldn’t sleep forever, and they were both in need of a bath. “But it’s time to get up, Yuu-chan.” He finally gave up and got off of Yuuichirou. He sat up and stretched, yawning widely.

 

He peered over his shoulder, a little hint of flirtatiousness in his eyes. “Should we shower together…?” Mikaela asked honestly in case Yuuichirou’s legs felt too weak or if he was in a little too much pain to bend and reach certain parts of his body, but he also asked because he loved being intimate with Yuuichirou. He would take any excuse to keep kissing and touching his new mate.

 

"You tell me you have blankets, yet you backstab me and make me get up…” came the quiet grumble. Yuuichirou pouted up at Mikaela as he gradually scooted over towards the other. He winced a bit. The pain was just now settling in, but it wasn't extreme, which he was glad for- but he couldn't bring himself to stand up.

 

"I can walk," Yuuichirou lied. He reached up and grabbed onto Mikaela's arm to help pull himself up. "...kind of,” he mumbled.

 

Mikaela smiled, another deep sound similar to a purr rumbling in his throat. He reached over, scooping Yuuichirou up into his arms so that he had one under Yuuichirou’s knees and the other supporting his upper back. “Then I’ll carry you.”

 

He didn’t want Yuuichirou straining or stressing himself if he didn’t have to. He wanted to pamper Yuuichirou, even if he could handle himself. It was only natural, since his instincts were telling him to protect and nourish Yuuichirou. He just wanted him happy and comfortable above all else.

 

Yuuichirou was his mate now, after all. Mikaela would stop at nothing to please him and protect him.

 

Yuuichirou grunted as he was picked up and held by Mikaela's strong arms. His weight didn't even seem to faze the alien at all. His arms naturally wrapped around Mikaela.

 

"Uhm.. alright...- but if you're carrying me outside of the room, I don't wanna be seen like this..." he admitted, curling his fingers into Mikaela's hair. It was really soft beneath the pads of his fingers. He couldn't help but to start playing with it.

 

“Krul isn’t home,” Mikaela assured. “She is at work by now.” Mikaela took him out of the room, glanced around just to be sure, and headed to the bathroom. Once inside, the door slid shut behind them.

 

“See?” Mikaela said, a smile on his lips. “Let’s get cleaned up…”

 

 

After cleaning up, putting their suits back on and eating a small meal, Mikaela felt pretty relaxed and comfortable. He was buzzing with joy, experiencing a post-mating bliss that he was told about once. Except to him, it felt much stronger than just that.

 

It had to be the love that Yuuichirou told him about. The thought made Mikaela smile.

 

He left Yuuichirou briefly to go tinker with his spacecraft, especially since it needed to be charged up and it was due for a general check-up. Mikaela’s job was being a technician on his planet, so he really enjoyed touching up his machine, even if it didn’t need it.

 

Once finished charging it, he emerged from its storage space to find a familiar neighbor of theirs approaching the house.

 

In his native tongue, he approached the silver-haired man. “Shinya, what is it?”

 

warning

 

“Mikaela!” Shinya jerked with surprise, his deep blue eyes looking almost… sad. “I’m glad I found you before anyone else did. I’m… not sure what’s going on, but Ferid’s returned and he’s resting, but officials will be at your home any moment now. I wanted to warn you, since I heard it-”

 

“What?” Mikaela’s blood ran cold. He looked to the house with slitted eyes.

 

“Mikaela…” Shinya trailed off. “Do you… have a mate?”

 

He likely noticed the way Mikaela’s tail began to lash and how his teeth were bared.

 

“I do,” Mikaela hissed out. “I need to make sure he’s safe…!”

 

Without speaking to Shinya further, Mikaela streaked past him and rushed into his home, where he found Yuuichirou safely inside. He was glad to see that, but there was no time to waste. They had to get going again.

 

“Yuu-chan!” Mikaela said, his eyes slitted with panic. “Gather your things. We’re leaving, now.”

 

Yuuichirou jumped a bit at the sudden urgentness of the situation. He had been laying with a cloth like towel around his neck as his hair was still drying.

 

He had put his jacket on over the suit just so he felt less exposed.

 

"Wha-what, like- right now?" Yuuichirou pushed himself up out of the place he was sitting and grabbed his phone. He didn't even know where he had placed his backpack. "We're just going to end up bouncing back and forth..." He pointed out as he hurried closer to Mikaela.

 

"I'll grab my bag later if we come back, it’s just snacks, but... what’s going on?"

 

Mikaela’s tail bristled with anxiety. He darted about their home, looking for anything he may need. He pushed past Yuuichirou to grab some essentials which he stuck to his belt. “Ferid. He’s back and after me.”

 

Mikaela turned around, fixing Yuuichirou with a serious look. “Yuu-chan, this is too dangerous. I need to take you back to Earth before I think of anything else to do, and-”

 

“Mikaela!!”

 

The alien in question flinched with surprise, his eyes now tiny slits from terror. However, he relaxed when he saw Krul rushing towards him. “Mikaela, this is why you shouldn’t have done anything! Now what are you going to do!?”

 

“Leave, of course…!” Mikaela hissed back. “What other option do I have?”

 

Krul stared at him, looking just as panicked. “I’m coming with you.”

 

“What?” Mikaela’s tail lashed suddenly with fear. “No, I can’t get you involved too…!”

 

Yuuichirou tried and failed to come up with something to say… but he felt that he should say something. Mikaela being so nervous and talking about having to bring him back to Earth had his anxiety and fear racking up.

 

"W-Woah…” Yuuichirou managed to say as he brought his hands up in a 'slow down' motion. Shaking his head, he continued. "Mikaela, calm down… i-it'll be okay and… Krul, I don't think coming is a good idea… but you're his guardian or… mother, so I can't stop you." He chewed on his lip nervously and played with his jacket. "Let's just focus on getting somewhere safe, and quickly,” he suggested, the spotted his backpack not too far away. He went and grabbed it before anything else happened.

 

"Well, I'm not letting him leave again,” Krul sternly said. "Not without me, and not without a week’s punishment of no hundleberry fruits!"

 

Mikaela’s tail drooped at the thought of being deprived of his favorite food, but he couldn’t sit around and pout when the government was threatening to come and… do who knows what with Mikaela.

 

“Fine… we need to leave though, now,” Mikaela said quickly, no longer arguing against Krul coming with. “Grab your things and I’ll drive the ship.”

 

“Where are we headed to first?” Krul asked speculatively. “Going straight back to Earth may not be the best…”

 

“We’ll stop somewhere along the way,” Mikaela said. “That way, if Ferid and Crowley still try to chase us, they’ll be thrown off. I’ll leave a faux tracker there so they think we’re staying there.”

 

Krul stared at him, likely questioning silently if this was a plan that would work, but she finally nodded resolutely. “Right. Let’s get going.”

 

It wasn’t long before they were all inside the ship and Mikaela was powering it up. “I don’t know when we’ll be back, but it won’t be soon,” Mikaela said, his tone grave. “I hate to leave without saying anything…”

 

“So do I,” Krul admitted as she peered out the windows. The spacecraft was slowly lifting above the ground as it powered up. “But we have no choice.”

 

Yuuichirou suddenly felt apprehensive. He stayed quiet as he held onto Mikaela's arm, since he was currently more preoccupied with not ricocheting around the spacecraft. Still, he couldn't help but to feel his heart squeeze with worry and doubt about this maybe not being such a good idea.

 

He held his breath once he felt the spacecraft lifting up and off the ground. It briefly made him feel sick.

 

"Breathe."

 

Krul had her attention on Yuuichirou, catching the human off guard. "It'll make it worse if you don't breathe."

 

Yuuichirou's lips pursed together and he slowly let out a shaky breath. It felt like too many things were happening at once and he didn't know if he could handle it in the end. He still kept quiet and held onto Mikaela.

 

Krul eyed him for another moment before turning her attention away and towards the large window of the large machine they were in.

 

Mikaela controlled his machine with expert fingers. After all, he was the one who built this thing. He was the one who invented this machine and its ability to hyper-warp drive at the speed it does.

 

Ferid and the others have their own methods of traveling billions of light years in a short amount of time, but they didn’t have the technology Mikaela did. Mikaela kept it a secret for a reason. Because of their ability to travel so quickly, he knew they could escape from Ferid and get out of there in time.

 

Still, they couldn’t rest for long.

 

Mikaela propelled the ship into the sky, narrowing his eyes as it broke through the atmosphere. And once it was far enough away, he tapped in some coordinates and the ship shot itself into a hyper-warp drive.

 

 

When the ship shot out from a pocket in space, Mikaela stared at their surroundings. It was just as he planned; a halfway point between Iridýon and Earth, which happened to be an inter-galactic cafe. What perfect placement.

 

“How did you do that!?” Krul hissed, looking around in shock. “That was… much faster than any traditional Foteinós technology, Mikaela…!”

 

Mikaela grinned at her, his tail flicking with pride. “I did it myself.”

 

Yuuichirou pulled away from Mikaela and moved closer towards the window. They were still really far from Earth, but seeing a cafe made his stomach growl; though, part of him was afraid of what kind of foods said cafe had.

 

"He scared me the first time when he brought me to your home..." Yuuichirou said quietly, almost absently mindedly. "I nearly puked." He laughed under his breath before he fell quiet and glanced at the both of them.

 

His gaze didn't linger long. Yuuichirou moved away from the window and crossed his arms over himself after pulling his jacket tighter around his body.

 

Krul raised a brow at Yuuichirou but didn't say anything. She was still in the midst of being amazed by her son's work. "You've always been better at complex machines and never simple ones," she mused, patting her son on the arm.

 

Mikaela hummed happily from the praise, moving the ship to hover in front of the cafe. There seemed to be only one or two other kinds of ships there, and Mikaela stared at them curiously. He wanted to spend time inspecting the ships and getting to know these species as well, but right now he was focused on humans. If he continued to escape from Ferid, he could explore all the other planets he wanted.

 

“We should get something to eat before we continue on,” Mikaela suggested. “Plus, we need to stall for enough time while the ship gives off a signal for Ferid and Crowley to follow. Then we can get back to Earth.” His tail flicked and he looked around, noticing how the other ships were connected to the cafe via some sort of clear tube to ensure a safe entry inside of it.

 

“I think you need to hook up to one of those,” Krul said, nodding to one of the cafe’s ‘doors.’ “Try it.” Mikaela controlled the ship to reach one of the doors and watched with fascination as it registered what kind of ship he had. Then, the tube shifted its shape and size to fit his door and connected to his ship by a vacuum seal.

 

“Wow…” Mikaela murmured. “This is handy… well, should we go inside?”

 

Yuuichirou let go of Mikaela immediately. He stepped towards the opening with little hesitation due to his overwhelming, growing excitement of meeting other kinds of species. Krul seemed a bit surprised to see Yuuichirou walk in first, but she shared a look with Mikaela before following the human boy.

 

Did they have translators here? Yuuichirou wondered. There had to be; especially with all the different kinds of people and aliens that probably visited this place for food. It made Yuuichirou happy. Something as simple as a cafe could bring anyone together.

 

His stomach growled at the strange smell of different kinds of food. He was a tad nervous about the food… he imagined he would be eating different kinds of things that could possibly be grotesque, like what he's seen in movies.

 

"You're stalling,” Krul mused as she pushed past Yuuichirou. Though, she too was nervous about being in an unfamiliar place. She just hid it well. She never let herself show fear, not even around Mikaela (unless he's done something stupid, like when he had ran away from his own planet).

 

"U-Uhm…” Yuuichirou intelligently mumbled out. "I suppose I am…” he admitted. He continued further into the cafe a lot slower than when he had walked off the ship. Part of him wondered how the workers got to work every day, but then he remembered the different types of technology they possibly had.

 

Yuuichirou felt his nerves begin to rack up and he shuffled over to Mikaela. "Can I hold your hand...?" He whispered. He kept his gaze lowered, but there was a small blush on his cheeks that was accompanied by a nervous look.

 

Mikaela nearly cried as he wondered how was Yuuichirou so cute. His tail perked happily and he reached over, threading their fingers together in the traditional way to show their status as mates for humans. It made him happy that Yuuichirou wanted to express that regardless of where they were.

 

Yuuichirou gripped onto Mikaela's hand firmly. He took a deep breath in the further they got in. He didn't know how they were going to communicate, but he really hoped Mikaela wouldn’t try to kiss anyone. He shuffled a bit closer to Mikaela in slight possessiveness.

 

They explored inside the cafe, which was mostly dark colors. The entire place was polished clean and mostly empty. There were a few other species seated about the cafe, but everyone was keeping to themselves and eating various drinks and pastries.

 

Mikaela gazed around, stricken by the cafe’s dark blue atmosphere. It was comfortable and fitting with its surroundings. He guided Yuuichirou deeper inside with Krul on his other side. Her tail flicked from side to side apprehensively. Soon, they approached the counter, where some creature was standing there, looking down at them with multiple sets of eyes.

 

It didn’t have a mouth or anything similar to what both humans and Foteinós had, so he wondered if he could even learn the creature’s language. He looked to Krul, completely unsure what to do in a situation like this.

 

Once they reached the bar counter, Yuuichirou reached forward and grabbed one of the menus. The words were hard to read for a split second before the letters rearranged to form kanji characters. Yuuichirou's lips parted in slight awe. They had burgers here?! He figured other aliens wouldn't even know about Earth; much less their terrible foods.

 

"Oh my god..." Yuuichirou whispered. He was still more amazed by the act that the letter changed so he was able to read them.

 

Perhaps they moved by recognizing Yuuichirou's skin or fingerprints? Had humans even been here before, or were aliens simply studying abroad or something more... complex than that? So many questions ran through his mind, but he found himself grinning like an idiot. He wanted to show Mikaela but he didn't want to make a scene.

 

"What's 'oh my god?’" Krul peeked over at Yuuichirou's menu. She was too short so she had to climb up onto a stool placed behind him to look at it.

 

Mikaela looked over at the menu as well, noticing nothing but an odd variation of lines and dots. But then, right before his eyes, the letters rearranged and shifted to create the Foteinós language.

 

Mikaela lifted his eyes, looking to the menu board on the wall behind the counter. The same thing happened- they rearranged to form words he could read.

 

It seemed impossible. How was that even happening? Mikaela wondered what would happen if he spoke in his native tongue, or at least Yuuichirou’s language of Japanese.

 

“What currency do you accept?” Mikaela asked out loud in Japanese. The alien creature blinked down at him with its many eyes. And then, a voice was emitted from it, even though no mouth was there to move.

 

“Anything legitimate from your home is acceptable,” it said. “The currency will adapt to our own.”

 

Mikaela was stunned. These creatures didn’t need any sort of physical contact to communicate. How was that even possible…?

 

“What do you want to order, Yuu-chan?” Mikaela asked, looking to his mate curiously.

 

Yuuichirou was absolutely breathless, but there was such a wide smile over his face. He almost didn't hear Mikaela until Krul patted Yuuichirou's shoulder to catch his attention. The human boy sputtered. He sheepishly looked over at Mikaela.

 

"Just... a burger... topped with jalapenos, lettuce, tomato, uh... and sweet peppers?" Yuuichirou trailed off. He felt so giddy. Space was utterly amazing.

 

Krul scrunched her nose up at the sound of jalapenos. Foteinós didn't enjoy anything particularly spicy, and just the sound of it sounded oddly hot. Yuuichirou, however, wanted something that wasn't so sweet.

 

Mikaela flicked his tail and said, “I’ll have amvrosía with néktar sauce.” Krul also ordered her food, and the alien inputted it into something in front of it. Mere moments later, the food was extended to them on separate, obsidian platters.

 

It was odd how quickly the food was produced, but Mikaela wasn’t too surprised considering the modernity of the place. “Ευχαριστώ,” he thanked in his native tongue, then took the food from the alien and found a comfortable place for them to all sit together.

 

Mikaela’s food in particular was sweet and sugary; exactly like food at home, but there was something strange about it. It was clearly made by someone else, someone foreign. Mikaela didn’t mind it; it was unique, new and refreshing.

 

“How’s yours tasting?” Mikaela asked to Yuuichirou and Krul, glancing to both of them cheerfully.

 

Both Krul and Yuuichirou were munching on their preferred food happily. Neither of them immediately responded, but Yuuichirou was the first to perk up after catching a pepper that had fallen out. "It's really good!" He cheered. He then held the pepper out to Mikaela. "I dare you to try it; but firstly, are you allergic to spice...?"

 

Krul lifted her gaze to the food in question and narrowed her eyes. Her pupils became slitted. There was no way she was letting her son eat that. Krul glared at Yuuichirou and smacked his hand down. Yuuichirou frowned and looked over at Krul.

 

"What...?" He mumbled, a blush rising to his face out of embarrassment.

 

"He's not eating that," she said sharply. She stuck her nose up and continued to munch on her snacks she'd ordered.

 

Yuuichirou deflated a bit. He dropped his gaze down to the rest of the burger before decided to just enjoy it himself. He hadn't meant to offend her at all but he tried not to let it bother him.

 

Mikaela just laughed it off and continued to eat until everyone was finished. Krul paid for their food with their currency and they made their way back to the ship to continue going on. After crawling through the vacuum seal, Mikaela powered up the ship to see their coordinates in relation to other Foteinós ships.

 

Sure enough, Ferid and Crowley had noticed their location and were slowly headed that way. Mikaela smirked, proud that their plan had worked.

 

“Okay… now, back to earth,” Mikaela announced once the ship had detached itself from the cafe. It was an interesting stop and Mikaela made a note in his mind about its location so he could maybe return someday.

 

They drifted far from the cafe; far enough so that none of their ship’s energy could damage the cafe or cause any disturbance. With a few taps on his screen, the ship went back into hyper-warp drive and zipped into a pinpoint of space.

 

After all the shaking for a moment or two, they flew out and soared, slowly coming to a regular speed far above Earth’s atmosphere. Mikaela blinked out of his windows, glad that the ship was projected out way up here rather than directly at the planet like last time- which was when he couldn’t stop himself from crash-landing.

 

“We made it!” Mikaela sighed, relieved at the sight of Yuuichirou’s home planet far beneath them.

 

Yuuichirou breathed a heavy sigh of relief. He was glad Mikaela didn't crash into another house this time; it seemed Mikaela was getting the hang of his own personally created technology.

 

He's still such a goof, Yuuichirou thought to himself with a cheeky smile on his face.

 

Krul looked at the planet with wide eyes before looking at the human boy.

 

"How do you live on such a small planet?!" She questioned.

 

The sudden ridiculous question made Yuuichirou laugh. Krul's face was quick to glow but she hadn't meant to make an outburst. She's just never seen any other kind of planet.

 

"I-It's pretty though..." She grumpily defended.

 

"Thanks," Yuuichirou replied softly. He returned his attention to Mikaela. "You remember where I live, right?" He asked as he slid an arm around Mikaela's.

 

“Yes, the Earthen country called Japan!” Mikaela said, angling the ship to begin its descent. It was going to be tricky; the atmosphere of Earth was powerful and unrelenting. They were going to be thrown down to Earth’s surface at an incredible speed. Mikaela only had a couple seconds to control his ship before they could crash into something and damage it.

 

The ship began to shake as it came nearer to Earth. The gravitational pull began sucking them downwards and Mikaela prepared himself, his fingers poised above the many controls. He didn’t want to destroy Yuuichirou’s house this time.

 

Their destination was set to Yuuichirou’s home, and if all went according to plan, they would land right in the driveway.

 

But that was only if it went according to plan.

 

“Here goes nothing…” Mikaela murmured now as the ship began rocketing towards Earth, speeding up faster and faster as gravity began to get stronger and stronger.

 

"Mika!" Yuuichirou cried out just before hiding his face into Mikaela's back. Fear gripped at his heart as his stomach dropped. This is why he hated roller coasters, and this was probably the longest, fastest drop he's ever felt in his entire life.

 

Not even their descent onto Iridýon was this bad.

 

Krul gripped onto whatever she could, but there wasn't much. She managed not to go flinging into the back of the ship, at least. Even as the speed grew in intensity, faster and faster as they descended. The force on Yuuichirou's body felt like it was too much for a certain period of time.

 

Yuuichirou thought the feeling would never stop, but once it did, he collapsed onto the floor of the ship. His body could only take so much and he felt sick again. He wouldn't have been surprised if he blacked out. He was just relieved that the motion stopped.

 

"Are you okay?" Krul's brows furrowed in concern. Yuuichirou just gave a slight nod. He needed some water.

 

Mikaela had made sure to shift the controls just in time, rearing the ship back and bringing it to a calm hover above the ground. And then, very gently, the ship settled on the pavement of the driveway.

 

“We’re back!” Mikaela said cheerfully, like the descent didn’t almost just make Yuuichirou pass out.

 

Their arrival didn’t go unnoticed. Mikaela blinked, familiar with the person now slamming the door open, glaring at them with a cup of coffee.

 

“Oh, it’s Guren,” Mikaela laughed at the grumpy man with his eyebrows tensed together. He looked like he just woke up, with his hair messy and flattened on one side.

 

“Who is this?” Krul hissed, shrinking behind Mikaela as he powered down the ship.

 

“Yuuichirou’s Mitéra,” Mikaela said. “Erm… not… Mitéra… uhm… Fýlakas!” Mikaela corrected himself after accidentally referring to Guren as Yuuichirou’s mother. “Like the Mátia, Fýlakas. Yuuichirou’s guardian.”

 

“Oh…” Krul relaxed slowly, and then the spacecraft opened up. Immediately, Guren stomped over to it and glared at Yuuichirou as he stepped off.

 

“What the hell are you wearing?” Guren muttered before anything else.

 

Yuuichirou knew he was really in for it the moment he saw Guren while feeling like his stomach wasn't settling very well. It would be really hot outside if it weren't for the suit he was still wearing.

 

"You..." Guren said shakily as he pointed a finger at Yuuichirou. He knew his father's tone of voice all too well. He was definitely in trouble. He was just surprised Guren hadn't grabbed him by the ear yet and dragged him inside. "You have the fucking balls to just up and leave like that?!"

 

Yuuichirou winced at the harsh language and how close Guren's face was to his own. He went to say something but Guren made an expression that told him he better keep his mouth shut.

 

The grumpy older human suddenly stormed back inside while dragging Yuuichirou behind him by the hood of his jacket.

 

Krul watched the scene curiously before looking up at Mikaela. "I should've done that to you when you came home,” she tutted before tentatively walking after them. She was more so curious about the interior of the house than anything.

 

It was so... boxy. "Primitive architect..." Krul muttered under her breath.

 

That's when Guren noticed Krul. Guren bristled and yanked his hand away from Yuuichirou; he looked nearly about to explode.

 

"You brought another one home?!"

 

"H-Hey, I didn't... bring anyone!" Yuuichirou argued.

 

“She insisted she came with,” Mikaela corrected. “Anyways, I’m here to return with Yuu-chan for some time, since we are mates, after all!” Mikaela said happily, coming up behind Yuuichirou to wrap his arms around his waist and nuzzle into his hair. His tail wound around Yuuichirou’s hips lightly.


“Isn’t that right, Yuu-chan?” Mikaela said sweetly, his skin glowing lightly with happiness.

 

The coffee mug Guren was holding suddenly slipped from his hands and shattered all over the ground. Mikaela flinched from the sound, but he blinked at it and then looked back up to Guren’s shocked, gawking expression.

 

“You fucked the alien!?” Guren snapped.

 

"I-I...!" Yuuichirou's voiced cracked. His face, from his ears to his chest, grew a dark red and he felt like he was going to scream from embarrassment. The only good thing was that his stomach seemed to calm down, but now it was replaced with butterflies and the intense need to hide.

 

Yuuichirou ducked his head down and pulled the hood of his jacket over his head to cover his face. He let out a small, muffled scream. What was he supposed to say?

 

His reaction was more than enough confirmation for Guren's question. Even Krul had a hand to her temple.

 

"I can't believe you fucked an alien..." Guren breathed out. He knew his son was gay or bisexual of some sort, but being with an alien? He didn't know how much more surprises he could take.

 

Yuuichirou peeked out from the hood and made a shrugging motion with his hands. He licked his lips nervously. "I-I mean, you... always did tell me you'd love me no matter what...?" His voice was small. With all the yelling and embarrassment, Yuuichirou's eyes teared up a bit because there were too many emotions going on at once.

 

He took a deep breath and closed his eyes.

 

"Y-Yes, I... had... sex with him..." Yuuichirou looked away. A funny feeling surged through him after saying such a thing.

 

Mikaela smiled as he looked at the redness spread on Yuuichirou’s face. “So cute, Yuu-chan.”

 

Guren sighed deeply, then glared down at the mess he made by dropping his coffee. “Shit, I liked that mug…” He reached up and scratched his head, then turned around to go to the kitchen so that he could clean it up. “Don’t step on it,” he called over his shoulder, for Krul began to follow him.

 

Mikaela and Yuuichirou slowly went behind her, edging around the mess carefully and going into the kitchen. Guren passed them again and took care of the mess, and once he returned, he squinted at the sight of two aliens seated at his table with his son dressed in some weird garment of theirs next to them.

 

“So? Are you gonna tell me he’s pregnant or something?” Guren said. “I don’t know how your weird alien biology works…”

 

“Oh, no!” Mikaela shook his head. “Only females can get pregnant, like humans. Plus, I was the one who mounted Yuu-chan, so if anyone were to get pregnant-”

 

“Mika!” Yuuichirou hollered, his face flaming up red again. He flailed and tried to cover Mikaela’s mouth.

 

“Oh, so I see, you were fucked by the alien,” Guren grumbled. “Aye…” he looked to Krul. “And who the hell are you?”

 

Krul narrowed her eyes. “Mikaela’s mother. And he is far too young to be mated. Your son is tainting his innocence.”

 

“You’re creeping on a guy younger than you?” Guren snapped to Yuuichirou.

 

“I am at an acceptable age,” Mikaela argued back to Krul, pouting a bit stubbornly at her.

 

Krul frowned at her son, narrowing her eyes. "No, you're not." She firmly crossed her arms over her chest. She didn't look happy about them being together at all. Yuuichirou wanted to melt away somewhere and just not have to deal with this sort of thing ever again.

 

"Fucking mounted... what kind of weird words do you choose," Yuuichirou muttered under his breath, but it was loud enough for Mikaela to hear. "Look, you can't just... go around declaring things like that, Mika..."

 

Mikaela tilted his head, but didn't get a chance to say anything because Guren just let out a frustrated and annoyed groan like scream.

 

"Look, Yuuichirou Amane," Yuuichirou flinched at his full name. He spun around to face Guren immediately. "You ran away, you didn't tell me, you had sex a million or so light years away, you left your friends to do your school work for you and the teachers to constantly call me so I had to tell them you got sick or whatever, and you brought more of these... ‘people’ to Earth." Guren huffed out. Suddenly all of the energy left him and he looked incredibly tired. "You're grounded, Yuu..." He said in a defeated tone of voice.

 

Yuuichirou's brows drew together as he studied his father. He looked really tired like he hadn't gotten any kind of sleep whatsoever. Guilt started to rise within his belly. He didn't even try to argue.

 

"Okay..." Yuuichirou murmured as he walked forward to make sure Guren stayed standing up. "But you should go lay down..."

 

Guren glared at him a bit, then sighed. “Sure, just… don’t explode the place while I am. And stay here, dammit.”

 

“We’re not going anywhere,” Mikaela assured, a grin on his face. Guren narrowed his eyes at him.

 

“And stay in separate rooms, I don’t want any freaky alien fluids all over my goddamn house,” Guren added, then stalked away to his room.

 

Yuuichirou sighed and laid his head on the table, feeling way too embarrassed to handle any of this.

 

“Fluids…” Krul murmured to herself, to make it worse.

 

Watching over a couple of aliens was much harder than Yuuichirou had ever thought it would be.

Chapter Text

Guren really did make them stay in separate rooms. Even Krul backed him up on it, which bummed Yuuichirou out a bit for two reasons. One being that he just wanted to be near Mikaela, and two, Mikaela had a lot of information that Yuuichirou could ask him about for his paper.

 

Yuuichirou chewed on his lip while staring at his computer screen. It was late at night by now and he had gotten through more than half of his make-up work. His eyes stung and his stomach growled.

 

He'd forgotten to eat, but when he was finally able to get to his final essay for the ending semester, Yuuichirou's main focus was cranking out over ten pages of Mikaela's star system and his moons. Yuuichirou took the time to describe each and every moon. Guardian, Warrior, Faith, and Luck. He described what he had seen and how the light reflected off of it in order to offer UV rays and other such things plants needed to photosynthesize and grow.

 

From the ruins littered over the ground to the abundance of hues of pink within the planet's vegetation, he had taken in so much information from just being there for a week, even if it hadn't felt like it.

 

Currently, he was a bit stuck. Trying to pinpoint Mikaela's planet directly was difficult. He already knew where his galaxy was and what it was addressed as on Earth. Finding one planet out of trillions...

 

Yuuichirou sighed and leaned forward. He ran his hands through his hair out of frustration. He still hadn't changed out of his suit because it really was quite comfortable. Thinking about it made part of him want to explain how they worked, but his paper was about the planet and its star system, not about the inhabitant's fashion or other such things. It would become incredibly suspicious if he were to even mention the Foteinós.

 

"I couldn't do that to him..." Yuuichirou murmured. He sunk down further in his chair while wistfully staring at his computer screen as if it would start typing itself.

 

If he could just figure out where and which planet Mikaela's was, he could continue and end his paper perfectly. The teacher would just write it off as extensive research on Yuuichirou's part, right?

 

Yuuichirou pushed himself out of his chair and walked over to the star map spread over his bed. He glanced down at it for only a moment before looking out the window in his roof. The stars were clear tonight but they weren't clear enough to show him the answer.

 

He was tired. His stomach growled, reminding him angrily that he needed to eat something soon.

 

Yuuichirou dropped his head down into his hands and knelt down. He was becoming frustrated with this paper even more so than he had been when he had first gotten the assignment.

 

He needed a great one. Yuuichirou wanted to get into the top career for astronomy and possibly work for NASA in the United States one day, discovering new planets and naming them, finding inhabitants and aliens while keeping it a secret from the rest of the world. It sounded amazing.

 

But he couldn't even remember the key constellations around Mikaela's planet to even find it!

 

Yuuichirou wanted to pull his hair out.

 

Someone had crept down the hallway silently until slowly, Yuuichirou’s door cracked open. Mikaela was delighted to see that Yuuichirou was still awake. He had snuck out of his bed, feeling a sort of ache in his heart for hours as he laid there awake. It wasn’t like Mikaela needed sleep quite yet, so he didn’t mind relaxing in the dark, but he missed being near his mate.

 

Especially since they had just recently became mates. Mikaela’s instincts were screaming to be near Yuuichirou, to hold and love him now more than ever. He didn’t want to be apart from him, so he decided to take a little risk of being scolded to sneak into Yuuichirou’s room.

 

“Yuu-chan…” Mikaela murmured, now stepping inside and closing the door behind him. He was once again wearing a sweater and pants rather than his suit, and it was strange to get used to again. Still, part of Mikaela loved it and he did enjoy the scent of Yuuichirou all around him as he wore it. “Why are you still awake? What are you doing…?”

 

He came closer to peer at Yuuichirou’s books and computer screen curiously.

 

Yuuichirou jumped when he heard his door open. He hoped Guren didn't either when he saw that it was just Mikaela.

 

He let out a frustrated noise as he walked over and threw his arms around Mikaela's shoulders. Yuuichirou closed his eyes as he pressed his face against the other's chest.

 

"I'm working on my school paper,” he admitted. Yuuichirou sounded tired but he couldn't let himself sleep yet. "I can't pinpoint the location of your planet and it's one of the main requirements for the paper." Yuuichirou stepped back and nosed at Mikaela's neck. Being around him eased his stress a little.

 

It was his fault for up a leaving and letting himself get so behind on school work.

 

"Can you help me?" He asked. "I just need to confirm which constellations your planet sits between."

 

Mikaela was content when Yuuichirou came up and cuddled him immediately. His heart warmed and his body hummed happily, generating a light glow that shone through the fibers of the sweater he wore.

 

“You’re doing what…?” Mikaela blinked, peering at the papers again from over Yuuichirou’s shoulder. “Yuu-chan… I don’t think I should talk to you about that.” He felt bad, but his tail rose up to curl around Yuuichirou’s waist slowly. “Ferid and Crowley are dangerous… if humans find out about Iridýon, they might get hurt… or the humans may even damage Iridýon…”

 

A lot of fears rose in Mikaela’s mind about it all. “We should start small. With you, and the people around you. But for all of your kind to know about us is… maybe moving too fast.” Mikaela felt bad and he hugged Yuuichirou tightly. “I’m sorry, Yuu-chan…”

 

He felt his stomach drop at Mikaela's words. He'd just wasted nearly ten pages...? Yuuichirou pulled away from Mikaela, looking a little desperate as he searched for words.

 

"B-But it... I didn't mention anything about your people, just... the moons and vegetation, the galaxy..." He wrapped his arms around himself. He couldn't lose all of that... Yuuichirou had no idea what else to write his paper on.

 

"They'll just write it off as extensive research on a planet; it... it has to be original and I can't just throw all of that away!" Yuuichirou's voiced raised a bit as he stared down at the floor in anger and frustration.

 

His stomach growled, making him bring a hand down to his stomach. Yuuichirou deflated with an audible sigh. He understood Mikaela's worries; he just didn't know what else to write his paper on. There was nothing interestingly new about Earth's constellations.

 

Mikaela felt pity squeeze his heart. "I know you have good intentions... but it just might not be safe..." His tail stroked up and down Yuuichirou's back slowly to console him.

 

"Don't get rid of that research, though," Mikaela compromised. "It will be valuable for you and the humans someday."

 

He leaned forward to press a kiss to Yuuichirou's forehead. "You need something to eat and then you need to sleep. Come on, let's get something to eat downstairs, okay?"

 

He did feel bad for denying Yuuichirou the information he needed to complete his paper, but it was for the better. For his species especially.

 

For a brief moment, Yuuichirou almost allowed himself to explode at Mikaela. But once food and sleep was brought up, his anger faded as soon as Mikaela kissed him. He did need to eat...

 

"Okay." Yuuichirou nodded. He gently pushed Mikaela's tail away as he moved towards the door.

 

He nearly fell down the stairs because he had gotten so used to walking up and down slopes. He thankfully caught himself on the railing and straightened himself up.

 

Yuuichirou glanced back at Mikaela and took his hand into his own again. He'd figure out his paper once he was well rested.

 

 

The following morning, Mikaela was lucky enough to wake up before Krul or Guren. He wasn’t exactly asleep, but he was entirely relaxed, not caring about time or the world around them for a few quiet hours of the night. He slowly detangled himself from Yuuichirou, bundled him up in his blankets and moved back to his own room.

 

He waited in there for some time before he heard movement about the house. It was then he finally emerged from his room, pretending to have been there all night, and freshened up.

 

It took Yuuichirou a little longer to wake up, but he eventually came out and had breakfast with the others. They had only just finished eating and were relaxing when a few rapid knocks rattled the door of Guren’s house.

 

“Who’s here so early…” Guren sighed, trudging to the door and opening it slowly. “For fuck’s sake, it’s too early for me to deal with a bunch of brats…”

 

“Is it true he’s back!?” One excited voice exclaimed.

 

“Is he brainwashed?”

 

“Does he still even have a brain!?”

 

Guren groaned and was shoved aside by Shinoa, Mitsuba, Kimizuki and Yoichi, who all piled into the house to see Mikaela and Yuuichirou seated on the couch. “You’re alive!” Shinoa cheered.

 

Yuuichirou was still snacking on cheerios when they all bombarded him. He was still waking up from his long night of homework so all the commotion kind of irritated him.

 

"Why wouldn't I be?" Yuuichirou quirked a brow.

 

"Because Mika-san is an alien!" Shinoa threw her hands up and clasped either side if Yuuichirou's face. Making him turn his head in weird ways to make sure there were no incisions made. "Oh thank goodness, you haven't been cut open..." She sighed in relief and hugged Yuuichirou.

 

Yoichi plopped down beside Mikaela and leaned forward towards him. Mikaela rubbed at his nose as it had begun to itch.

 

"Are you really an alien?" Mitsuba and Yoichi asked at the same time.

 

"Eugh... what makes you think he's an alien...?" Yuuichirou murmured. He seemed cautious as he brushed Shinoa's hands away from his face.

 

“Because he’s… blue?” Mitsuba pointed out, as if he was dumb. Yuuichirou blinked, looking to Mikaela, who hadn’t hidden his own skin color.

 

“Wha- Mika!” Yuuichirou stammered out, not even having noticed that Mikaela didn’t camouflage himself.

 

“They came in so quickly, I didn’t have time,” Mikaela sighed shrugged slowly.

 

“Is that a tail!?” Kimizuki suddenly pointed to the tufted appendage that rested around Yuuichirou’s waist. The fluffy tail flicked, as if it was waving hello.

 

“It is!” Mikaela chirped.

 

“And who’s she?” Shinoa asked, staring at Krul who was sitting in one of the recliner chairs, staring at them all with slitted eyes.

 

“My mother,” Mikaela explained.

 

“She looks awful young…” Kimizuki murmured.

 

“Not really,” Yoichi added on lightly. Mikaela squinted at him, then felt a sneeze rize in his senses before it exploded out. Mikaela shook his head, the force of the sneeze making his entire body flinch.

 

“Oh, and why is his tail wrapped around you all snuggly, Yuu-san?” Shinoa asked, a grin beginning to spread on her face. “You two seem awfully cozy together right now!”

 

“It’s because we’re mates!” Mikaela responded cheerfully. The last incident of telling this to Guren didn’t faze him in the slightest.

 

“M-Mates!?” Yoichi stammered, his cheeks reddening quickly. “A-Already?”

 

“That’s what I said,” Krul muttered from her chair.

 

“Whoa, whoa, whoa…” Mitsuba looked between them. “You two had… s-... s-...”

 

“Sex, Mii-chan!” Shinoa said for her, all-too-loudly. “They embraced each other in the throes of passion, making sweet love in an exotic, far away place…”

 

“Idiot Yuu is into some weird kinky shit if he’s willing to do that with an alien,” Kimizuki sneered, enjoying all the teasing going on at the moment. He didn’t notice the way Yoichi looked to his hands slowly.

 

"Mika!" Yuuichirou jabbed him in the side with his elbow. He didn't need everyone knowing. He sighed and slumped in his place beside Mikaela.

 

"Yes, fine; we had sex and it was great, whatever," Yuuichirou mumbled. His face tinged pink. "And the age of maturity for humans is 18-21… Mikaela is 20 in human years, but I didn't know he was too young for it so I apologize for that." He glanced at Krul who raised a brow. "But to be fair, Mika started it."

 

Guren snorted somewhere off to the side.

 

"Also, I don't know how you guys couldn't tell he was an alien in the first place, the guys ears are big and pointy." Guren shrugged, leaning against the side of the couch.

 

Yoichi fidgeted a bit with a round pod in his hands. He seemed to be trying to set, or rest, some kind of timer.

 

Mikaela was immediately fascinated with the object. He could just tell that thing was not made from Earthen materials. It was clear to anyone who had an eye for alien things.

 

Not thinking twice about it, Mikaela reached over and snatched it from Yoichi’s hands. “What is this?”

 

“D-Don’t touch it!” Yoichi stammered, but it was too late. The object slippery in a sense and it flew from Mikaela’s grasp, then came to a grand crash on the floor.

 

It shattered. And as it shattered, everyone’s eyes were on it.

 

“The hell is that?” Kimizuki grumbled. He looked up to Yoichi for an explanation, but froze in place and gasped at what he saw.

 

Yoichi was sitting there, the same way he was before… but he was wearing entirely different clothes, firstly. He wore Earthy colors, which was ironic considering he was clearly not from this planet.

 

He was furry. And ears, akin to a deer’s, flattened on his head as he stared at his friends around the room. The expression ‘like a deer in the headlights’ had never been more accurately depicted.

 

Mikaela sneezed suddenly. He knew there was a reason for his allergies acting up as they were… there was something animal-like around, and it was Yoichi. Mikaela knew the entire time, hence why he said, “I was surprised you didn’t find out about me earlier. Your friend here has been an alien the whole time. Humans are pretty dense…”

 

“You’re…” Shinoa blinked widely. “An alien too…?”

 

Yoichi hesitated before throwing his hands up and weakly saying, "Surprise...!" He clearly looked uncomfortable being around them suddenly. He couldn't hold eye contact with any of them for long before he ducked his head down. He reached over to grab the glamour pod- the object that broke- and sighed at the damage just dropping it had caused.

 

"This things are so delicate..." He whispered.

 

Yuuichirou's eyes widened considerably, but not out of disgust. He launched himself forward and cupped either side of Yoichi's furry face to have him look up. It caught Yoichi by complete surprise.

 

"You're like an adorable teddy bear...!" He exclaimed. He backed away a bit and took Yoichi's hands into his own. "Which galaxy are you from?!"

 

Mitsuba looked nervously between the three aliens. Had they always been around? How many more were hiding here on Earth...? Kimizuki noticeably stepped away from Yoichi, who immediately took notice to it.

 

"Why didn't you tell us...?" Kimizuki asked suddenly. The tone of voice caused Yuuichirou to look up at him with furrowed brows. Why was his tone... harsh?

 

Yoichi stared at him silently, his throat tightening nervously. “I couldn’t just… outright say I was an alien one day… could I?”

 

“But this is who you are…!” Kimizuki continued, looking more agitated. “You’ve been lying to us this whole time? Who knows what else you’ve told us is a total lie? Who… who even are you?”

 

“Oi, Kimizuki…” Mitsuba said slowly, but the same doubt shimmered in her eyes.

 

Yoichi felt his heart began to sink. His deerlike ears flattened further against his head. “I… I just… I w-wasn’t…” What was he supposed to say? His vision was watering now and he trembled. He guess he had been a huge liar, a fake to all of his friends…

 

“Yoichi didn’t mean it!” Mikaela snapped, glaring angrily at Kimizuki with unhidden slitted eyes. “He must have a good reason for hiding this. Humans are scary, they experiment on things they don’t know about! That could be one reason he stayed hidden! You should be more considerate.”

 

With a dismissive lash of his tail, Mikaela turned his head away from Kimizuki and the others, then sniffled and tried to hold back another sneeze. He really was allergic to Yoichi, it seemed.

 

Yuuichirou casted a glance at Mikaela then back to Kimizuki. He still had Yoichi's hands clasped within his own but he slowly let go of the boy's hands. He returned his attention back to the newly revealed alien and patted the side of Yoichi's face.

 

"He's only different in appearance, I don't know why you would think his personality would be any different," Yuuichirou offered a sympathetic smile to Yoichi who seemed to be surprised by it.

 

"It doesn't... but I..." Kimizuki tried to think of what to say, to explain the sudden conflicting feelings colliding inside of him. Yoichi knew why Kimizuki was so frazzled. He had recently admitted to liking Kimizuki but now... Kimizuki just looked disgusted with him and confused.

 

Guren rubbed at his temple, eyes closed. Too many surprises and drama for a week; he didn't need anymore.

 

"I... I'm here as a transfer student of sorts..." Yoichi timidly spoke. "I've been to other planets and I know of Mikaela's species and quite a few others." He sighed as he lowered his head. Yoichi pushed himself up and clasped his hands together in front of him. "I may have hidden who I really am or… what I am but… that doesn't mean I've ever lied about being your friend."

 

Shinoa brought a hand to her mouth. Yoichi was too cute, she didn't think she could take it. Mitsuba and Kimizuki still looked apprehensive.

 

“Wait, you’ve been to Iridýon before!?” Mikaela asked, suddenly turning to Yoichi. He sniffled heavily and itched at his nose. “Is that… object that I broke something you can use to disguise yourself as any other species?”

 

Yoichi nodded slowly. “Yeah, I… disguised myself as Foteinós when I studied on Iridýon. It was crucial that I was not revealed, because of your situation…”

 

“Situation?” Shinoa tensed her eyebrows, looking between Mikaela and Yoichi. “Wait, like what?”

 

Mikaela hesitated for a moment, looking about the group before sucking in a tense breath and just taking the risk to trust them. “Foteinós are not allowed to leave. I should not have ever gotten here to Earth, but I escaped from my government and they’re chasing me now.”

 

“You’re a convict!?” Kimizuki hissed. “What the hell?”

 

“But for a good cause,” Mikaela said quickly. “I believe my species- the Foteinós- are biologically evolved and perfected for long-distance travel and communication. We can learn an entire language by a simple kiss.”

 

“I was wondering how you knew fluent Japanese…” Mitsuba murmured.

 

“Oh, a kiss…” Shinoa grinned, looking to Yuuichirou with a smirk on her face. “So you two had been something since the day we met him, huh…”

 

"No!" Yuuichirou squeaked out. He puffed his cheeks out and crossed his arms over his chest. "The first thing he did was kiss me, I shit you not, not even three steps out of that ship..." He lightly squinted at Mikaela before looking away. He wouldn't admit to attraction at first sight.



"Foteinós language was pretty hard to learn; it's a bit unfair you guys pick up speech patterns just through a kiss." Yoichi sighed.



Another sneeze from Mikaela.

 

"Mika, I thought I gave you allergy medicine?" Yuuichirou quirked a brow. "You took the entire bottle from me."



"It's safe for Mika to take our medicine...?" Shinoa asked. "Their bodies our different from ours, Yuu-san would know." She giggled to herself.



Yuuichirou glared at her. "He's taken it before,”he huffed out. A brief image of Mikaela's body flashed through his mind and he found himself red.

 

Mikaela made a happy purring sound in response to Yuuichirou's flustered nature. He couldn't help but to admire just how cute his mate was. Due to his protective nature, both as his own personality and due to his Foteinós biology, he really loved it when others commented on and acknowledged their relationship as mates. It helped Mikaela feel assured that they would not interfere with their connection and respected it.



But his happiness aside, he put his attention back on Yoichi, entirely forgetting to answer about the allergy medication. He might have to take some soon, but he was too excited at the moment. "Your species has made devices specifically for disguises... and to study abroad various cultures and planets... you are part of a program of many students, right?"



"Right..." Yoichi answered shyly. "My older sister is part of the traveling as well."



"Wait- so when you said she was studying abroad, you mean on other planets?!" Shinoa gawked.

 

"Yeah..." Yoichi laughed softly. "She's about 78 million light years away right now..."

 

"Whoa..." Mitsuba breathed.



Mikaela, meanwhile, was processing all of this. What he would give to travel as Yoichi and his kind do! His government must encourage and fund this sort of education. He had to see Yoichi's planet someday; it seemed too good to be true. He wondered… Why did Foteinós have to be so far behind them...?

 

"Despite our technology for travel and other such things, we're pretty behind on everything else; we're moreso known for our remedies that can pretty much cure anything and shipping is intergalactic I believe..." Yoichi played with the pod, trying to rewire a few things. "Which is the only reason we can travel so well through space; no one wants to wait a whole lifetime for medicine." He chuckled.

 

"That’s actually pretty neat," Mitsuba muttered.

 

"So... what constellations do you travel by?" Yuuichirou asked suddenly. "I tried to do my paper on Mika's but he's... paranoid we'll invade because of my paper, but if you know any rogue planets with no life, I'd like to know about them," he pressed. Yoichi pursed his lips, glancing up at him.

 

"There are plenty of dead planets... saddening to know but the only one I really remember is one that’s bigger than your sun... kind of scary, but... I'll tell you later." Yoichi sat the device down, giving up. "I'm surprised none of you called me an anthro, or furry or something..."

 

During their chatter, Mikaela finally reached into one of the packs attached to his belt and fetched some of the allergy medication Yuuichirou had given him. He took one of the pills with the water he took from the fridge earlier and sighed softly when he put the bottle away.

 

“I live in what the humans call the Black Eye Galaxy,” Yoichi admitted. “It’s about 17 million light years away from Earth. I… might be able to help you, Yuu-kun. Just give me a little time…” He furrowed his eyebrows at the broken glamour pod in his hands. “I need to fix this first…”

 

“I can help,” Mikaela suddenly offered, a small smile resting on his face. “I’m a technician at home; I can fix most things. Even things that are alien to me.”

 

“You broke it…” Kimizuki muttered, even though he had been quiet for a long time.

 

“I know… but I can fix most things I break,” Mikaela promised. Yoichi hesitated for a moment, then handed it with all its broken parts to Mikaela slowly. Mikaela took them gently and looked at the fractured pieces, then stood and darted to the garage.

 

Left behind in the room, Krul felt uneasy, but she simply shrunk back in her chair more and said nothing. Shinoa stared at her longer, seemingly curious, but even she stayed silent. The silence in the room stretched on as everyone processed what they just found out about each other.

 

Yuuichirou breathed out a happy sounding sigh. "He's so cute..." He murmured. Yuuichirou hadn't realized that he'd said it out loud until he heard a few giggles from his friends. His face grew warm but he refused to try and hide his face. He could deal with the embarrassment of admiring his alien boyfriend.

 

"My son... is beyond help," Guren breathed out. He finally moved away from the couch and into another room. It was quiet again until Guren came rushing back in and pale. The fact that Mikaela was somewhat of a fugitive had finally settled in. "So him… being here… wh-what does… that mean?" He was using unnecessary hand gestures. Yuuichirou pursed his lips.

 

"That there are people currently after both me and Mikaela as we speak," Krul said nonchalantly.

 

"And you were worried about our government, Yuu," Guren hissed. He brought his hands up and covered his face. "Oh my god, he's actually dating an alien fugitive and had sex with him."

 

"Can you please stop reiterating the fact that I had an alien dick up my ass?!" Yuuichirou shoved himself up. His face couldn't get any redder. Yoichi timidly raised his hand.

 

"I... have more glamour pods at home if... you ever needed a better disguise..." He suggested.

 

“That might be cool!” Shinoa said curiously. “Wait, could it make me have boobs as big as Mii-chan’s, if not bigger!?”

 

“That’s not what it’s made for,” Mitsuba rolled her eyes.

 

Mikaela returned suddenly with the glamour pod in his hands, completely fixed and appearing as if it had never broken in the first place. “All done!”

 

“That fast?” Yoichi blinked. “Wow, thank you…” He took the pod back to inspect it, noticing it looked good as new. He didn’t need to disguise himself right now, but he glanced to Kimizuki, who was still silent and keeping his eyes on the ground. With a guilty feeling making his heart sink, Yoichi activated it and appeared human again.

 

“Why did you do that?” Mikaela asked, tilting his head. “You don’t need to hide.”

 

“Maybe it’s… easier for everyone if I do,” Yoichi responded softly, a small, strained smile on his face. “Sorry…”

 

Mitsuba shrugged. “Whatever you’re comfortable with.”

 

Still, Mikaela watched his expression with a bit of confusion and pity poking at his heart. The only one having a very negative reaction to Yoichi’s alien nature was Kimizuki. And considering Yoichi’s sadness over this, rather than anger… Mikaela wondered if Yoichi desired Kimizuki as a mate.

 

To have been so sourly rejected for who he truly was… must hurt. Mikaela turned away and sat down slowly, close to Yuuichirou with his tail naturally winding around his waist again. He couldn’t help but to feel lucky for Yuuichirou and his love for Mikaela, even despite their huge differences.

 

"Okay, but are they like... big dudes, girls, whatever they are...?" Guren made a buff motion as he spoke. "I might run away on you if they show up here, Yuu, no hard feelings." He wasn't paying any attention to the tension between Kimizuki and Yoichi at the moment.

 

"Wow... thanks dad." Yuuichirou narrowed his eyes.

 

"The first time you've called me dad in ten years and it's to be an asshole!"

 

"Says the one who won't stick around when the aliens invade to save your own son!"

 

"You got yourself into this mess, I didn't do this."

 

Yuuichirou squinted at Guren further. "You being my parent requires you to stick around even if I somehow become pregnant."

 

"Fuck.”

 

Mitsuba snorted. She had to turn her head away from the two in order to keep from laughing. Even Kimizuki cracked a sort of smile. "And you." Yuuichirou, regrettably, pushed himself up off the couch and towards Kimizuki. "Mr. Telephone Pole, I've seen the way you look at Yoichi, but you won't even look at him now just because his true appearance is different?"

 

Kimizuki's face reddened. He shot a glare up at Yuuichirou and crossed his arms over his chest. "But he's...-" His words stopped forming quickly.

 

Yuuichirou widened his eyes and inclined his head towards Kimizuki, expecting an answer.

 

"Humans sure do fight a lot..." Krul rested her head on her fist.

 

Yoichi suddenly jumped at the sound of his phone going off. He answered it quickly, fumbling with it before raising it to his ear slowly. And then… a completely alien language fell from his lips. “பாட்டன்?”

 

Mikaela stared at him intensely, wondering what it was. Yoichi continued, “ஆம், அது உடைந்தது. ஆனால் நான் பாதுகாப்பாக இருக்கிறேன், இப்போது அது சரி செய்யப்பட்டுள்ளது.”

 

“Holy shit,” Mitsuba breathed with fascination.

 

“நான் பூமியில் இருக்கிறேன். இங்கே வேறு வெளிநாட்டினர் இருக்கிறார்கள், ஒளிரும். ஒருவேளை நீங்கள் வர வேண்டும்.” Yoichi nodded a few times, then said his goodbyes- or what sounded like them- and hung up slowly.

 

“What the hell was that?” Guren asked.

 

“My grandfather,” Yoichi said. “He should be coming here. He can explain better than I can.”

 

“What’s his name?” Krul asked suddenly.

 

“கெக்கோ,” Yoichi replied. “Ah, uhm… in Japanese that might be something like… Gekko.”

 

“Then…” Kimizuki spoke up slowly. “What’s… your name? Your real name…”

 

“விருது,” Yoichi murmured. “Virutu.”

 

A silence settled in the room as everyone glanced to each other uncertainly. Yoichi smiled a little awkwardly. “You don’t need to call me that… in my language, ‘Virutu’ means ‘award,’ so I selected the Japanese name closest to that… and ended up with Yoichi.”

 

“But that’s… not your real name,” Kimizuki whispered. “All this time…”

 

“It is my real name,” Yoichi insisted. “It… it’s my human name.”

 

Kimizuki stared silently at him, unsure of how to combat that. “Do you feel more human than… uh…”

 

“ஆவி,” Yoichi supplemented. “I am an Āvi. But living here for as long as I have, I feel… more human than anything else…” He admitted softly.  

 

"Your language is absolutely amazing..." Yuuichirou started bouncing in his place. Yoichi blushed faintly and turned his gaze away. He forgot how excitable Yuuichirou could become about such things, especially about space.

 

"Kimi, stop being so mean to him..." Mitsuba's brows furrowed as she turned towards him. "He's clearly upset about you’re just... glaring at him, as you have been this entire time… and it's really shitty of you." She walked towards the other and flicked Kimizuki's arm. "You clearly like each other, don't do this."

 

"How-" Yoichi started but Shinoa raised a hand.

 

"The same way I can tell Yuu has kissed girls before even though he claims he's strictly dickly."

 

"I never claimed that!"

 

"First year of high school, yes you did."

 

Yoichi fiddled nervously, looking down. He didn't know what to say to Kimizuki to make it any better. He could see where the human was coming from but… he was hoping Kimizuki wouldn’t have had such a negative reaction.

 

“Anyways…” Mitsuba rolled her eyes. “How long until your grandfather arrives?”

 

“He should be here in less than an hour,” Yoichi guessed.

 

Everyone in the room stared at him, absolutely amazed. “What!? And how far away is he?” Guren stammered.

 

“He’s at home, so 17 million light years,” Yoichi laughed softly.

 

“Can anyone travel like that?” Mikaela asked, his eyes wide with wonder.

 

“It’s a bit expensive… but yes, anyone has that technology that can afford an average life,” Yoichi said. “My grandfather has been retired for a while now, but he worked had all his life and has a lot of savings. It’s why he can afford to let Tomoe-nee and I travel around as we do.”

 

“Still, at such an astonishing speed…” Mikaela murmured, calculating in his mind just how easily the Āvi must travel. “And nearly everyone has access…” Mikaela was jealous, to say the least.

 

And sure enough, not much time passed before a strange sound was heard from the front of the house. Yuuichirou darted up to watch from the window as an entirely new kind of spacecraft sank to the ground, then landed lightly. The others joined his side to peer at the new alien.

 

Out stepped an older alien, tall and broad, yet clearly worn down by age. His hazel eyes- the same color as Yoichi’s- settled on them in the window, and Yoichi opened the door to come outside. “பாட்டன்!” Yoichi called.

 

“விருது…” Gekko responded, a smile on his lips as he hugged Yoichi for a moment. He then lifted his eyes, seeing the group before him. Without a hitch, he began speaking in Japanese. “I see we have two Foteinós with us,” he said. Turning to Krul and Mikaela, he suddenly spoke the Foteinós language. “Καταλαβαίνετε Ιαπωνικά?”

 

“Μιλάμε Ιαπωνικά,” Mikaela assured. “Σας ευχαριστώ για την εκτίμησή σας.”

 

“Splendid, I will speak in Japanese,” Gekko said while clapping his hands together. “May we go inside, as not to attract attention of other humans out here…?”

 

“Sure…” Guren murmured, looking dazed. He felt like this was all some sort of fever dream. First one alien crashed into the house, and now his son was tangled up in all of these weird alien politics. When would be ever get a break…?

 

Kimizuki rubbed at his temples. He didn't know how much more he could take, and he found himself drifting off from the group once they were all inside. He felt like he needed to leave and clear his head. He couldn't bring himself to look at any of them, especially not Yoichi.

 

Shinoa noticed Kimizuki exiting into the kitchen and away from them, but he didn't completely leave the house.

 

"I... don't think having spaceships in the parking space does any less..." Yuuichirou pointed out. His lips pursed together and he looked over at Gekko. It was so cool having aliens at his house, but he wasn't exactly sure why Yoichi had his grandfather come by. And after traveling such a distance in such a short amount of time... Surely that had put some kind of toll on the man's body.

 

"Nope!" Guren threw his heads up and started heading upstairs. "The neighbors already think we're weird, so just leave them there; maybe we'll get our government involved, too." He huffed out.

 

Yuuichirou squinted at him along with Mitsuba. Guren was so melodramatic.

 

"Uhm..." Yuuichirou turned his attention back to Yoichi and his grandfather. "So... I know what's going on with Mika, but I'm a bit lost…”

 

“Yeah, why did your grandfather come?” Shinoa asked, as if reading Yuuichirou’s mind.

 

“Because, ah… he’s the commander of foreign affairs for our planet,” Yoichi said softly. “He’s retired from traveling, but when I told him there were Foteinós here, he insisted he came immediately.”

 

“An occasional travel won’t wear me out so easily,” the old man said as they went inside, a toothy grin on his face. Once back into the living room, he sat down across from Mikaela and Krul and fixed them both with a serious gaze. “I came here because my grandson reported the presence of Foteinós. Why in the universe are you here? Has the situation worsened?”

 

“He ran away,” Krul gestured to her son, exasperated. “Against the government’s wishes. He’s a criminal, at this point. They’re chasing us down as we speak. But their ships are slow, so we have an advantage. Still… it’s dangerous.”

 

“You escaped…” Gekko nodded, seemingly taking in some information from her words.

 

Mikaela stared at Gekko, stunned. “Wait… you know what’s happening?”

 

Yuuichirou looked between Gekko and Mikaela. “You said no other Foteinós had contacted other life before, Mika… so how does he know about you?”

 

“That’s what I thought,” Mikaela murmured. “But… it seems there’s… a lot of secrets about the Foteinós and Iridýon that I don’t know…”

 

Gekko’s hazel colored eyes gleamed with sympathy. He took in a deep breath and leaned forward, looking between Krul and Mikaela as he spoke. “I know a lot more than you think, young one. Allow me to explain…”

Chapter Text

“I’ve monitored Iridýon my whole life, just like my mother, and her mother, and her father,” Gekko explained. “The job as commander has been passed down my family. But suddenly within my lifetime, Iridýon harshly cut communications and became isolated.”

 

“They cut communications on purpose…” Mikaela breathed, putting the pieces together. “Have you tried to find us?”

 

“Oh… we did,” Gekko recalled darkly. “I sent my daughter to reach them and notify me if anything was wrong. Yoichi went with her… and she had to return alone. She barely lived, since she had to fight against the Foteinós in close combat. She protected Yoichi and allowed him to escape somewhere that he could activate his glamour pod and blend in with the Foteinós. This was because Yoichi insisted he stayed behind and learned as much as he could, no matter how dangerous, and thus successfully disguised himself as Foteinós.”

 

“You did…?” Krul looked to Yoichi curiously. “If this was after the incident, then… how old are you…?”

 

“The same age as Mikaela, biologically… but we live much longer than Foteinós,” Yoichi told her quietly.

 

“How did you manage to escape?” Mikaela asked him.

 

“My spaceship is faster than your government’s top ship,” Yoichi said. “It wasn’t hard to slip away due to that. But it was pretty scary… so I’m amazed you could escape, Mika-kun.”

 

Mikaela felt proud as he responded, “I built my ship to be fast. I think that’s the only reason I got out.”

 

“So… you just gave up on us once Yoichi returned?” Krul asked, looking slightly betrayed.

 

“I said it was dangerous, and the Foteinós were all convinced that their ruler was correct,” Yoichi defended Gekko. “I said that they needed someone within their society to rise up and lead a rebellion. Then, they could reconnect with the rest of the universe again.”

 

“That’s why… I think it can be you, Mikaela,” Gekko said, meeting Mikaela’s eyes. “You need to take action, and fast. If the Foteinós keep living like this, they will fall behind technologically. And if every Foteinós who has an instinctive urge to explore, as you’re biologically inclined to do, is killed off… then your entire species could be wiped out.”

 

Mikaela felt his heart tense. “My feelings and urge to explore is in my blood…?”

 

“Yes,” Gekko confirmed. “Everyone feels it. They will be easily convinced once you speak up. You just need to find out what’s holding everyone back and what’s suppressing them.” Gekko looked sternly to Krul, then back to Mikaela. “I suspect it’s some type of… mind control, but I need someone from the inside to find out and report to me. Unfortunately, as Foteinós yourselves… you may fall under whatever spell or trick the others are under.”

 

Gekko looked intently to Yuuichirou, who was seated right beside Mikaela. “That’s where you are important. You humans, especially you- connected to Mikaela through a mated bond- will keep Mikaela’s sanity grounded and his senses in tact. Yoichi is an essential part of this journey, as he can disguise as Foteinós, but he cannot do this alone.”

 

“Count me in,” Shinoa grinned. “This is so cool!”

 

“How did you know about humans, though…?” Kimizuki asked slowly. “Was Yoichi telling you information…?”

 

“Yes…” Gekko said, “but I have official connections through a female human here, known as Mahiru Hiiragi.”

 

A silence settled in the room before suddenly, everyone rounded on Shinoa. Yuuichirou yelled, “Your sister is in contact with aliens!?”

 

“I didn’t know everything she did,” Shinoa said with a smirk on her face. “But she’s always been… shady.”

 

Yuuichirou looked around the room, then to Mikaela, making a decision in his mind. “Alright… we’re going to overthrow an alien government, and we’re going to need all the help we can get. If you guys aren’t down for this… I need to know, now.”

 

Everyone glanced between each other slowly. “I’m in,” Mitsuba said with a nod.

 

“So am I!” Shinoa added. “I’ll let Mahiru-nee know.”

 

Yuuichirou looked to Kimizuki pointedly. “And you?”

 

Kimizuki looked at them all doubtfully, then, with a heavy sigh, he nodded. “Fine. But I better not get my arm chopped off by some laser beams or something.”

 

Yoichi's eyes widened and he gained a bright smile. He was at least a little bit happy to know that Kimizuki wasn't completely against him or the other aliens in the room. He jumped up and grabbed Kimizuki's hands into his own without thinking. He was just too relieved to know Kimizuki would still help them. "Really...?!"

 

"You guys are really cute..." Yuuichirou muttered under his breath with a fond smile over his lips as he watched Yoichi. Yoichi had started rocking back and forth on the balls of his feet as he smiled up at the pink haired human.

 

Kimizuki hesitated at the elated smile on Yoichi's face. He pulled his hands away from Yoichi's and took a step back. He saw Yoichi's smile falter.

 

"Y-Yeah..." He muttered lamely.

 

"Ohhh, what would I look like as one of you guys..." Shinoa murmured to herself as she looked at Mikaela and Krul. She had a finger to her chin as she daydreamed about her possibly different appearances.

 

"Short." Krul mentioned.

 

"You are too..." Shinoa frowned over at her.

 

“So… what exactly are we doing?” Mitsuba asked, looking to Gekko inquisitively. “I have no idea what the hell this alien place even looks like… only Yuu has been there.”

 

“Apparently… my urge to explore is biological,” Mikaela explained to her, as well as everyone else in the group. “I don’t know how I’ve been able to resist the government’s control, but… my guess is that Ferid has been using the fear amongst the Foteinós and manipulating the people to suppress their instincts.”

 

“You think it’s through the power of speech rather than any legitimate mind control?” Yoichi asked carefully.

 

“Yeah…” Mikaela nodded, looking to Krul. “She’s been worried, but not really against exploring.”

 

Krul’s tail flicked hesitantly. “It’s… interesting.”

 

“I’ve noticed your growing enjoyment of being away from home,” Mikaela pointed out to her. He looked back to the group. “I think if we can find the documentation and proof about our species that Ferid is hiding and expose it to the Foteinós, and then inspire them to keep trying to explore, we can change their minds.”

 

“It sounds easy in theory, but… Gekko mentioned how his daughter, Yoichi’s mom, almost died trying to escape from them,” Kimizuki pointed out. “What kind of violence are we talking? Will we have to risk our lives?”

 

Mikaela shifted a little. “I don’t know… Foteinós like me who get curious about exploration usually disappear… and it’s safe to assume they’re killed, or held captive. If that’s the case… we are getting into something really dangerous.” Mikaela admitted this with saddened eyes. “But as long as we can get the truth out in the opening, the rest of the Foteinós can take it from there.”

 

Admittedly, Yuuichirou was slightly frightened by the whole prospect- more so for Mikaela rather than himself. Thinking about Mikaela getting hurt, or worse, made his heart twist painfully. Yuuichirou had to look away from him.

 

"So he wants to become a martyr..." Yuuichirou sighed out to himself.

 

Yoichi glanced at Yuuichirou, a frown gracing his lips.

 

"I can't do it if you die," Yuuichirou said suddenly. He crossed his arms over his chest and tilted his head with a pout on his face like a four year old.

 

Shinoa almost mimicked his stance before catching herself. "Yuu-san's right, I don't want to think about anyone dying for this."

 

Gekko shared an understanding smile but said nothing. What could he say to ease their worries? Ferid was relentless in his beliefs and would stop at nothing to get rid of those who defied him. The fact that Mikaela had escaped him three times already would already make things worse.

 

"For once, I may agree with your… human mate here, Mikaela." Krul straightened up. "I need you to be careful because I can't lose you like I did my husband." She frowned briefly as an image of him flowed through her thoughts. "I know Ferid, he's got a soft spot… but otherwise, he's pretty much extremely devious, and Crowley is even worse. He can crush you without a second's thought and he won't feel any sort of regret or sympathy." She paused before continuing in a softer voice. "I've seen it happen, I don't want to see it happen to you, too…”

 

“That’s the key!” Mikaela hissed defiantly. “You said Ferid has a soft spot. We need to strike it. That’s our only chance…” His eyes hardened with determination. “We can’t keep sitting around and doing nothing. We have to try. If anything might go wrong… we will run again. But if we never try, then what good are we?”

 

No one really had a good argument to that. It was then that Gekko straightened up, his deer-like ears perking on his head.

 

“This is why you, Mikaela, are the best for this challenge,” Gekko said. “You have a way with words. I believe with your abilities, your passion and good intentions… you can do this successfully. And I promise, myself and the Āvis will support you. We will offer our help for planet Iridýon as soon as you take control.”

 

“You’ll become the new ruler!?” Shinoa gasped. “Wow, that makes Yuu-san like… the queen, or something!”

 

“We don’t have a monarchy,” Mikaela laughed softly.

 

“Then, your mistress! Or the First Lady…” Shinoa thought about it while Yuuichirou’s face reddened slightly.

 

“He is my mate,” Mikaela corrected her. “The sole person I trust with my life. My equal.”

 

Krul shifted her eyes from Mikaela to Yuuichirou, beginning to take her son’s feelings more seriously. He did truly love this human… and she should start accepting that, too. She smiled a little at the passionate expression on Mikaela’s face.

 

“I can offer my help,” Krul added on. “I know Ferid… or at least, knew him before everything changed with the incident.”

 

“You do?” Mikaela asked, turning to her with surprise. He didn’t know this before.

 

"Yes,” Krul said shortly. She hesitated in thought before continuing. "He used to be quite kind before the incident; I went to school with him." She sighed out. "Anyways, Mikaela, you're still young, I doubt he'll actually kill you... Ferid’s got a weird father complex because he lost his father in the incident."

 

Mitsuba rubbed at her face while crossing her other arm over her chest. This just seemed like all too much, and she didn't know if she really wanted to put her life in danger. But Yuuichirou was her friend and Mikaela was his... boyfriend? So she felt the need to help out at least as much as she could.

 

Yuuichirou, however, looked like he was having second thoughts. He was nervous and unlike Foteinós, humans weren't all that tough. He wanted to stand by Mikaela no matter what, but he couldn't help how pale he looked. He reached over and nervously gripped onto Mikaela's hand. "Mika...-"

 

"Yuuichirou," Krul interrupted. "Please, I need you to help keep my son safe." She slipped off the chair and walked over to him. Yuuichirou gripped onto Mikaela's hand tighter.

 

"I don't know if he'll spare young humans… but I need you to make sure you're both alright; Ferid is incredibly smart and cunning when it comes to ruling over others through his speeches. But Yuuichirou, you're smarter than he is when it comes to thinking things out... and that's just by how I've seen you talk about things when we were back on our own planet."

 

Yuuichirou quickly shook his head. "Please, don't put your faith into my knowledge or how well I can perceive things…”

 

"You should see all of the work he puts into his classes and interests..." Shinoa murmured quietly. "Even if he did disappear for a week."

 

"Mikaela, you're amazing with technology and getting people to listen to you,” Krul said to him. “Yuuichirou could very well help you with getting our people to listen, or at least Ferid."

 

Mikaela nodded in response, his tail waving as his mind drifted off in thought. They would have to get to Κεφάλαιο, their capital city, where Ferid would be. It would require them to break in to το κέντρο and try and find the data- and possible captured Foteinós- and release them to the public to expose the truth.

 

Then, somehow… Mikaela would need to get control of the σήμα, which was what Ferid used to broadcast his speeches to all of Iridýon. It was pretty much like a television on Earth, but more advanced. Mikaela would hopefully get his words out to the people before Ferid found him- or they could even see the discussion Mikaela would likely, inevitably, have with Ferid.

 

As long as they saw the truth and were snapped out of their fear, Mikaela felt they could do this.

 

He looked at the humans in the room- as well as Krul, Yoichi and Gekko- and nodded. “We can do this. And we need to do it as soon as possible. We have some time, since Ferid and Crowley are still chasing us down, likely trying to stop me from getting together a group like this.” Mikaela’s tail lashed back and forth with his excitement and anxiety.

 

“We need to move, and fast,” Mikaela declared. “They are slower than us, but not by much.”

 

“Then let’s go,” Krul said. “There’s no time to waste.” She turned to leave, and everyone went to follow her.

 

“Περιμένετε!”

 

Everyone’s heads whirled at the sudden, unfamiliar voice that sounded in the doorway.

 

Mikaela gawked. “Μεσάνυχτα!?”

 

The man in question- Shinya, of all people- sighed deeply. “Χαίρομαι που σε βρήκα!” He wiped his forehead and sighed deeply, his tail drooping from how exhausted he was.

 

“Εξηγήστε, πώς μας βρήκατε!?” Mikaela gawked, but then noticed the utter confusion in the room by everyone but Krul, Gekko and Yoichi, who could understand their language.

 

“Ah…” Mikaela hesitated, looking around the room at everyone. Then, he pointed to the one nearest to Shinya. “Φίλε τον έτσι μπορούμε όλοι να καταλάβουμε.”

 

“Εντάξει!” Shinya said, then turned to the man Mikaela referred to. Guren stared at him, frozen in place as Shinya stepped closer, angled his head, and pressed his lips to Guren’s.

 

“Oh, how cute!” Shinoa giggled.

 

Immediately, Guren shoved him away and staggered back, his face reddening quickly. “What the hell!?”

 

“Ah… Japanese is the language?” Shinya spoke slowly as the words and nuances of the language slowly registered in his brain. “Wow… well, anyways! I’m here!”

 

“Why!?” Krul hissed. “There’s no way…”

 

“Actually…” Shinya hesitated. “Uhm… I’m sorry, Mikaela!” Shinya clapped his hands together and bowed his head slightly, his tail slipping between his legs. “I was… sort of spying on you while you made your ship. And my urge to explore has been growing lately, so I tried to mimic what you did and built my own…”

 

“You copied my work?” Mikaela blinked. “You should have just asked for my help!”

 

“More importantly, you want to explore?” Krul pressed. “Why?”

 

“Will anyone explain what is going on and who he is!?” Yuuichirou suddenly yelled. He was growing more anxious by the second. He pulled his hand away from Mikaela and moved away from everyone to give himself some space. "We're all talking in circles and more and more aliens, people, whatever the hell keep showing up and this…” He gestured widely, “is just becoming a bit too much."

 

"Yuu-chan…” Mikaela murmured.

 

"Mika, I stand by you,”  Yuuichirou cleared up after seeing the slight confusion on his boyfriend's face. "I'm just a bit confused and overwhelmed." He relaxed a little and rubbed at his temple.

 

Krul stepped over to Shinya and pulled him further into the room, leaving Guren a blushing and angry mess. "This is Shinya, he's a gardener,” she clarified. “And apparently a mechanic, if he can build a ship like Mikaela’s.”

 

Shinya offered a hesitant wave. He looked at Yuuichirou as he noticed the suit he was still wearing. It seems Yuuichirou kept forgetting he was even wearing it.

 

"Is this your mate, Mikaela?" Shinya quirked his head in interest.

 

"Y-"

 

"Me being anyone's mate isn't the issue, we need to stop all the idle talk and get going!" Yuuichirou was becoming frustrated quickly. It didn't help that he had little to no idea to what he was getting himself into, but he would do anything for Mikaela.

 

"Yuu-san's right..." Shinoa brought a hand to her chin.

 

"Ferid's ship is getting closer,” Gekko said suddenly, shutting a monitor he had been looking at.

 

“We need to get moving,” Mikaela declared. He noticed Shinya, who had just arrived, and he thought about what Shinya should do. He came to a decision quickly. “Shinya, please stay here. Ferid is tracking and following me, not you, so you should be safe. Stay here and help Gekko in case he has any issues regarding our language and behavior; since he hasn’t been in contact with us in decades, it’s possible he might need some help.”

 

“I thank you for the consideration,” Gekko nodded his head to Mikaela. Shinya nodded quickly, likely not really knowing what was going on in depth, but agreeing nonetheless.

 

“I’ll stay here with… uh… these two,” Guren gestured to Shinya and Gekko. “You kids better return with your heads still attached…”

 

“No worries! Decapitation is not likely to happen!” Mikaela said, a bit too chipper. “Let’s go!”

 

“Are we all gonna fit in your ship…?” Kimizuki grumbled.

 

“It’ll be a tight squeeze, but we can manage,” Mikaela said. “Everyone, follow me!”

 

Mikaela lead the way to the driveway, where he got into the ship and waited for everyone to board it. Sure enough, it was quite a tight fit, but it would do the job. They could get to Iridýon and do what they had to do.

 

Mikaela powered on the ship and the antigravity commenced, earning quite a few reactions from the group aboard, and then the ship began to hover above the ground and float up towards the sky.

 

"Wait-!" Yoichi nervously shuffled through the bag he had brought onto the ship before handing the four humans a glamour pod each. "Even if we don't need disguises, these glamour pods will still help your body adjust to different atmospheres.” He handed one to Kimizuki last, avoiding eye contact with him.

 

Yuuichirou rubbed his thumb over the pod, tilting his head. "How do you-" Yoichi reached over and tapped the side of it to activate it. He did the same for the other three and his own. Yuuichirou looked down at his now green skin, freckled with white. "Oh…” He jumped when he felt a tail that wasn't Mikaela's, feeling it hit against his leg.

 

Yoichi brought a hand up to his mouth, a grin hidden behind it.

 

Shinoa looked down at her own hands before looking at Mitsuba. "Oho, Mii-chan looks nice in those suits." She teased, wiggling her fingers in an unspoken threat. Mitsuba's face warmed and she quickly covered her chest with her arms.

 

"Don't you dare!" She hissed out. Shinoa looked away innocently, clasping her hands behind her back; her tail waved deviously low behind her.

 

"This is... weird," Kimizuki murmured. The fact that everyone was bunched together in the small space of Mikaela's ship really didn't help because he was forced to be so close to the others. Yoichi was pressed to his side.

 

They all lurched when Mikaela began to speed the ship up. Yuuichirou internally dreaded another space warp. He really couldn't take another one if it was anything like last time.

 

Mikaela had to focus on getting back to Iridýon as soon as possible, no matter how badly he wanted to admire how cute Yuuichirou looked as his own kind.

 

They went shooting up to the sky, rocketing through the atmosphere at a ridiculous speed unlike anything they had experienced before- save Mikaela, Krul, Yuuichirou and Yoichi.

 

“Holy shit!” Kimizuki yelled as they flew higher and higher above Earth. Shinoa was pressed against the window, watching with wide eyes as they soared above their planet. Mitsuba had her eyes closed tightly and Kimizuki was too busy gripping onto whatever he could.

 

Mikaela programmed what he had to initiate a hyper-warp drive, and then space opened up. They flew inside, their entire ship shaking and enveloped in light for a few heart-stopping seconds before they were spit out millions of light years away. There, just beneath their ship, was the glossy purple surface of Iridýon.

 

“O-Oh my god…” Shinoa stammered, still pressed against the window throughout the whole journey. “We’re seriously across the universe!?”

 

Mitsuba opened her eyes slowly, managing to take in what she was seeing. Kimizuki looked around as well, awed at their surroundings. Mikaela smiled happily, knowing they were likely admiring the colorful Mátias orbiting Iridýon.

 

To the humans, it looked like something straight from a sci-fi movie. They couldn’t believe their eyes. Mikaela focused on bringing the ship down towards the atmosphere, but instead of going to his home- as his ship was usually programmed to do- he made sure its destination was Kefálaio, the capital city.

 

It was riskier, but they had to move quickly. He truly wished he could take his time to show the humans around, but maybe that could happen once they figured out how to fix their screwed up government.

 

Yoichi saw his phone light up. He pulled it out. “Ah, my grandfather has contacted me. He said Ferid’s ship must have been modified and updated, because they are going faster than they used to. Not as fast as Mika-kun’s ships, but faster than the average… hence why they almost caught up with Mika-kun and Yuu-kun.”

 

“Really…?” Mikaela murmured, surprised at the news. No wonder the cafe stop didn’t really shake them off for too long. They must have done some revisions on their brief stop on Iridýon. “Well… we have no time to waste.”

 

“Yeah, they’re already on their way back to Iridýon, according to Gekko,” Yoichi said. The ship dipped lower and lower to the surface and was beginning to be sucked in by Iridýon’s gravity. “So we don’t have a lot of time, anyways.”

 

Yuuichirou placed a hand on his stomach, leaning forward. He really doubted he'd ever get used to this sort of thing. He breathed in deeply before looking out of the large window and down at the city. Yoichi offered him a bottle of water, which Yuuichirou took from him in a haste.

 

"This... you leave here?" Shinoa looked from Mikaela's planet to Mikaela. "No wonder Yuu-san was gone for a week..."

 

"I was gone for a week?!" Yuuichirou paled, looking over at his friends. His sense of time had been jacked up entirely. He sighed and rubbed at his eyes. That explained how tired he was and why he had so much work to do. "Fantastic..." Yuuichirou murmured.

 

"Hey, you're the one who left to get dicke-"

 

"Shhh!" Yuuichirou snapped a bit before pouting.

 

Shinoa frowned at him, looking at the way Yuuichirou's pseudo tail bristled. He didn't seem like he was in the best mood, so she decided to tone down her teasing for awhile.

 

"Alright, I'm ready to get off this ship." Mitsuba pushed past Kimizuki towards where the door opened. She was becoming just a tad more impatient.

 

They had parked in a darker place, behind a hill at the edge of the city, away from where anyone could see them first. It wasn’t uncommon to see a ship flying around, so they didn’t look too suspicious to the general observer. Still, Mikaela wished to keep his ship aways from the heart of the city in case anything happened.

 

It would be fine to leave it farther away, just to be safe. They stepped off the ship and came over the rise of the hill, staring at the city before them.

 

The Kéntro was before them, where they had to do their work. Mikaela paused to look behind him at the others, all disguised perfectly as Foteinós.

 

“Yuu-chan…” Mikaela’s heart warmed at the sight of his mate. He looked quite adorable as Foteinós, with greenish skin and a black, fluffy tail… Mikaela’s tail waved happily and he stepped closer, reaching out to cup Yuuichirou’s face. He leaned in, pressing a tender kiss to his lips. “You’re beautiful…”

 

“Do your kind not care about privacy?” Kimizuki asked, looking to Krul uncomfortably.

 

“Not necessarily,” Krul shrugged. “But we must get moving.”

 

“Aw, they’re smitten with each other,” Shinoa acknowledged.

 

Yuuichirou's tail swayed behind him at the sudden affection. As much as he wanted to pull Mikaela into another kiss, Krul was right. He brought his hands up and gently pulled Mikaela's away from himself but not before kissing the top of Mikaela's nose.

 

"Thanks, but we have to go." Yuuichirou laughed under his breath.

 

Mitsuba shook her head. "Totally smitten..."

 

Yuuichirou stepped away completely and looked towards the others. "Which way are we going?" He questioned as he joined the others outside, water bottle in hand. Krul pointed to a larger dome-looking citadel.

 

"Great," Kimizuki murmured under his breath.

 

Krul looked upon the disguised humans before turning and walking ahead. She pulled the band out of her hair to place it in a bun instead, since she didn't feel like tripping over it.

 

"Let's go," she ordered simply. Yoichi immediately headed after her, followed by the two girls then Yuuichirou. Kimizuki hesitated for a long moment before following after.

 

"Just... act natural, Foteinós don't act that much differently, besides the fact that they have no rare concepts of love and… well, sex and romance," Yuuichirou explained while he glanced at the others. He ignored the look Shinoa was giving him. "Just don't cause a scene..." He huffed out.

 

Their trek to the Kéntro was without interruption or issue. Mikaela kept his eyes trained on the building as they got closer. There wasn’t tight security, considering there wasn’t much crime on Iridýon in general. It wouldn’t be hard to get inside. But it would be hard to get to the data they needed- it was then they would need to be creative.

 

“This is the Kéntro,” Mikaela told the others, realizing he hadn’t explained what the building was beforehand. “It’s where all the information… and possibly previous Foteinós who tried to escape… might be hidden. Getting inside won’t be too hard, but there are Foteinós everywhere in there, all with identification and reasons to be there.”

 

“We need to get as far as we can without having anyone notice us or ask us what we’re doing,” Krul told them. “As soon as we’re noticed, then we have to fight.”

 

“Fight…?” Mitsuba murmured, slightly awed and scared.

 

“Just simple martial arts, as you humans call it,” Mikaela said. “Enough to distract and temporarily harm, but not damage permanently.”

 

“I don’t know how to fight…” Kimizuki grumbled to himself nervously.

 

"Erm..." Yuuichirou tugged on Mikaela's sleeve to catch his attention. "Only me and Mitsuba know a bit of self defense..." He whispered. He licked his lips and glanced at the others. He was starting to think this was a bad idea.

 

"Is... there anywhere the others could stay?" He glanced at everyone. "Mika, I don't want any of us to be hurt..."

 

Yoichi fiddled with his bag. He was a pacifist, so fighting was never his thing. Shinoa only knew how to win arguments.

 

Mitsuba rubbed her arm and both her and Shinoa glanced at each other. She spoke up. "Yuu-san, we'll be okay."

 

“We’ll do most of the fighting,” Krul assured. “The others can open doors and check our backs for us. Either way, Foteinós are easily convinced. We can try to persuade them to let us through before fighting.”

 

“Not many of us like Ferid,” Mikaela murmured. They were now by a side door of the Kéntro; an unguarded door, leading into one of the more neglected parts of the building. Krul pressed her hand to the tablet outside the door. The building recognized her as a normal citizen. When it prompted her to state her reason for visit, she inputted that she was doing research.

 

The doors slid open and they all proceeded inside. Then, the doors closed behind the group, and they were officially inside.

 

“We can get pretty far in with my excuse of research,” Krul insisted. “Come on. We’ll get as close as we can before we have to take action.”

 

Mikaela’s tail naturally went to rest around Yuuichirou’s waist as they walked, keeping his mate close to him out of his protective urges.

 

As they traveled further inside, the group stayed huddled together. Yoichi was a bit behind them, but only to keep a look out. He was on high alert and nervous about being attacked. The last time he was here was the reason he was a little jittery.

 

As much as Yuuichirou enjoyed having Mikaela's tail around him, it made him feel a little crowded. Even so, he couldn't bring himself to say anything or push Mikaela's tail away. Instead, he focused on his breathing to distract himself.

 

"Ah..." Krul paused in their walk when she was suddenly denied access. She licked her lips and turned towards Mikaela. "They blocked off another section." She glanced up at the words along the top of the door that read: Ιστορία των Μοιραίων.

 

Yuuichirou tilted his head but Yoichi read it aloud. "History of the Deceased...?" His brows furrowed. "Like... bibliographies or something?"

 

"Sounds more like a name record room where some come to visit to leave gifts... like a memorial?" Yuuichirou turned to look at Yoichi then back to Krul. Her expression was set into a hard look, clearly thinking.

 

She placed her palm back on the scanner and typed in 'Δώρο'. The scanner seemed to hesitate before flashing green, allowing them access into the room.

 

Mikaela glanced around, seeing that no one was questioning them or anything. They all proceeded inside the room, where the door then slid shut behind them. The room was dimly lit and… overwhelming, to say the least.

 

Names were all listed on the walls of the circular room… names of dead Foteinós. Around the room were various gifts left likely by surviving family, friends and mates. However, there was something odd about the entire place.

 

This couldn’t be all the dead Foteinós ever. There were just too many, and plus, there were other memorial sites. Why were these in the Kéntro…? And so far into it, hidden away from many others…?

 

Mikaela’s eyes then found the massive words, stretching above all the names of the deceased Foteinós.

 

In the Foteinós language, it read:

 

Here we grieve over the Foteinós who died due to their curiosity. In their attempts to leave the safety of our home planet Iridýon, they perished due to multiple mistakes and malfunctions. May we take these names as a lesson and a reason to stay on Iridýon and stop risking lives, once and for all.

 

Mikaela narrowed his eyes. “This is…” He stalked over to one of the walls, seeing one row of names.

 

Immediately, he recognized one of them. “Κόκκινος!” Mikaela gasped, his pupils slitting thinly with his emotions.

 

How had he forgotten about her…?

 

“Who is that…?” Yoichi asked, recognizing Mikaela’s exclamation as someone’s name. Mikaela was still for a moment as memories of his childhood washed over him. It’s been so long since he’s thought of being young, but… he recalled his former classmates and neighbors, all who he occasionally saw… except, for one.

 

“In Japanese, her name would be something like…” Mikaela had to think about it before it came to him. “Akane.”

 

“Akane…” Krul murmured. “Κόκκινος… that young girl?” She seemed to remember her, and Mikaela nodded quickly.

 

“Yes, she was… a great friend of mine,” Mikaela explained. “She always was looking at the sky, expressing an interest to go ‘up into Ouranós,’ but then she moved when we were just kids, and… we lost contact. I thought she was alright, but maybe…”

 

“She might have been too vocal about her interest,” Mitsuba muttered gravely. Mikaela turned back to the engraving of her name, not wanting to believe it was there.

 

“She can’t be dead…” Mikaela said. “But if she’s one of the people on this list, amongst others that… have shown a curiosity towards travel… it’s likely that Ferid and the others took them away and pretended they killed them.”

 

“Or actually killed them,” Krul reminded him. “It’s possible…”

 

“But they could still be here, in the Kéntro!” Mikaela argued. “We have to keep looking…!”

 

“Maybe… over here?” Kimizuki spoke up, and it made everyone turn to look at him. Kimizuki was pointing towards the corner of the room, where a discreet door was hidden away in shadow. “Should we try to go in?”

 

Yuuichirou slowly crept over towards the door. He glanced back at the other, but Kimizuki followed after him which made him feel a tad better. The door creaked open as Yuuichirou had to shove it open. It seemed to be malfunctioning at this point.

 

Yuuichirou lifted his gaze to find glowing pods lined up in rows.

 

There were people inside of them.

 

… Not people, but other Foteinós.

 

"Mika..." Yuuichirou looked over at the other in question. His brows furrowed. "I think this is where they all went..."

 

Krul appeared beside him, peeking inside and pursing her lips. She hurried over to one of the pods and glanced at the monitors above them, standing on her tiptoes.

 

"They're alive…” She confirmed.

 

Yuuichirou let out a breath he didn't know he was holding. He was glad to know he didn't just walk into an alien morgue.

 

“There she is… Akane…!” Mikaela rushed over to one of the pods, seeing the red-skinned, brown-haired girl he once called his best friend. She was older and larger than she was when they said goodbye as kids, but her braid was still resting on her shoulder as it always had. Mikaela whimpered, immediately feeling terrible for her. She was held up in this tube for who knows how long…

 

“Yuu-chan…” Mikaela murmured, with his hand resting against the glass of Akane’s tube. “Or… anyone. I need you to record this on your cell phone, right now. For evidence.”

 

“On it,” Shinoa said, tugging her phone out and immediately videotaping the entire room. She strolled around, getting multiple angles of the captive Foteinós, all appearing as if they were asleep, immersed in some bubbling glowing liquid.

 

“I have no idea how to get them out…” Mikaela whined, feeling a bit frantic. Why did he think he could handle something like this?

 

“I believe the instructions are over here…” Yoichi pointed out timidly, getting Mikaela’s attention. He came over next to Yoichi, where he saw a few levers and buttons. Beside them were glowing letters telling the one using it what they did.

 

Mikaela pressed the button that indicated ‘drainage,’ then tugged the lever that said ‘release.’

 

A few clicks and strange sounds were emitted from the room, but then the liquid in the tubes began to drain out from the bottom into clear pipelines that descended underground. The Foteinós within the tubes stayed in their place, rooted in their tubes by form-fitted padding. Mikaela watched, entranced at the sight until all the liquid was gone. Then, the padding deflated, and some sort of gas was expelled into the tubes.

 

The doors of the tubes slid open, letting the steam-like gas out. And instantly, Mikaela and the others heard the Foteinós begin to breathe and cough.

 

“They’re waking up…!” Mitsuba gasped in wonder.

 

Mikaela was already stepping towards Akane’s tube, his eyes glistening with emotion. He could see the shapes of the Foteinós emerging from the steam, and as it cleared, their colors began to show. First, tails were breaking through the clouds of gas around them. Then, glowing skin shone through the gaps as their bodies woke up.

 

Mikaela’s heart soared happily when Akane stepped out from the steam, blinking at Mikaela with instant recognition. “Μικαέλα? Είναι πραγματικά εσύ?”

 

“Κόκκινος!” He called out, then ran towards her to hug her. When he backed away, she was tensing her eyebrows in confusion, looking as if she had some sort of headache.

 

“Where am I?” She asked in their native tongue, looking around. “Why… why are all these Foteinós here? Mikaela…”

 

Mikaela looked at her sadly, answering back in their language, “You’ve been locked here for years, Akane… we’re breaking you out. A new age is beginning now.”

Chapter Text

Akane went to say something, but turned when she heard the others coughing. Yuuichirou, Mitsuba, and the others has all rushed to help a few stand up. Some were even younger than Mikaela. There were so many rows of pods, there was no telling when Ferid had started this.

 

Krul sat one by one down to check them over. She may be a veterinarian, but she still could check over these Foteinós for wounds or other such injuries.

 

Yuuichirou was a bit surprised that some Foteinós could be so tall. He felt small compared to them, even with Mikaela. He couldn't think about that right now, though. He had to help as many as he could out of their pods.

 

Once there were quite a few out, Yuuichirou returned to Mikaela and glanced at Akane. He knew she wouldn't be able to understand him but he spoke anyways.

 

"They all seem to be okay, but we need to get to that... broadcaster thing," Yuuichirou pursed his lips. As soon as he had spoken, Akane's eyes widened. There was no such language on Foteinós, so she automatically deduced that he was an alien. "We have to get this out to the public before Ferid comes back."

 

"Τι γλώσσα είναι αυτή?!" Akane turned her attention back to Mikaela and gripped his arms. "Δεν είναι φωτεινός. Τι είναι αυτός?"

 

Yuuichirou frowned, looking over at Akane. He felt a bit nervous which resulted in him taking a step back. There was so much going on and her excitable attitude made it a bit worse.

 

“Μπορώ να εξηγήσω αργότερα, πρέπει να φύγετε τώρα!” Mikaela told her, pushing her along with the Foteinós that were being lead out the doors.

 

“None are injured physically,” Krul assured to Mikaela and the others. “Not that I can see.”

 

“Good…” Mikaela breathed a sigh of relief. He looked to Akane. “Κόκκινος… Σας υπόσχομαι να σας πω τα πάντα. Αλλά πρέπει να ξεφύγετε.”

 

Akane studied him, looking sadly at Yuuichirou, for she clearly wanted to know everything now. “Καταλαβαίνω. Καλή τύχη, Μικαέλα.” She then complied and went with the other Foteinós, peering curiously at Yuuichirou and the others who spoke another language. They didn’t look different due to their glamour pods, but she didn’t know they were in disguise.

 

“Kimizuki, Mitsuba,” Mikaela said, gaining the attention of the two humans. “Guide these Foteinós out the way we came. You may need to kiss one so they can communicate with you. Don’t be so embarrassed, it does not mean the same thing as it does to humans.”

 

“Eh…” Kimizuki groaned. “That’s so weird…”

 

“Suck it up and deal with it,” Mikaela told him, turning abruptly to Yuuichirou. “And yes, we do need to get to the Síma.” He glanced to Shinoa, who was dutifully recording the entire scene. “We’ll hook up Shinoa’s phone to it so that everyone can see the footage.”

 

“Let’s hurry,” Krul said. “I’m sure Ferid and Crowley will be arriving back here very shortly.”

 

Mikaela nodded, seeing now that the room was empty. They left it behind and headed out the room labeled ‘Ιστορία των Μοιραίων’ and back into the halls of the Kéntro. Now there was so much commotion with the released Foteinós that they were able to head to their destination swiftly.

 

Mitsuba and Kimizuki pointed the Foteinós to the exit doors, and then left them to rejoin with the squad.

 

They were met with a ramp with a glowing floor, leading up higher and higher to a podium that was used for announcements- it was the Síma.

 

“There!” Mikaela gasped with delight, amazed it was so easily accessible. He darted up the ramp and the others followed him. Mikaela stood before the controls of the Síma, his eyes wide at the sight.

 

He was just now realizing this was really happening. His heart began to pound and he took a deep breath, his tail waving side to side with his anxiety.

 

Yuuichirou placed a hand on Mikaela's shoulder. He could see Mikaela's nervousness and excitement clear on his face. He slipped his hand down and rubbed the blond's lower back reassuringly.

 

He was just as nervous, if not more. Yuuichirou had no idea what was really going on but he had been thrown into a government conspiracy that turned out to be horrifyingly true. It was almost like one of the horror reality shows or something, just... bigger.

 

Shinoa hurried up and handed her phone to Mikaela without really thinking about it. Yuuichirou had let Mikaela mess around with his phone a few times so hopefully it wouldn't be an issue since they had similar phones.

 

Yuuichirou felt some kind of feeling swell within his chest. Was it… pride? Yes, he was proud of his partner; very much so.

 

"Alright, we-" Shinoa paused. "Do you have any kind of speech rehearsed?" She questioned, pursing her lips. Yuuichirou looked at her strangely.

 

"Not everything has to be rehearsed when it involves a speech," Yuuichirou reminded. Shinoa made an 'o' with her mouth and kept quiet. She looked to the side, feeling her face warm a bit which, in turn, made her skin 'glow'. She was just all new to this and even she was quite nervous about the whole thing, too.

 

Krul glanced behind them before pulling out a monitor Yoichi had given her while they were helping the Foteinós out of their pods.

 

"They're almost here..." She murmured nervously. She was quite small for a Foteinós, so she wasn't sure just how big Ferid or his guards were up close. They were quite broad from the distance she could see them.

 

The Síma went live, and Mikaela blinked down at the people he could see from his elevated position. A glass, dome-like window surrounded them at all angles at an elevated height, and any Foteinós that were in Kefálaio could see him. Most of them stopped, confused and curious at the sight of Mikaela rather than Ferid.

 

Mikaela was frozen for a minute, unspeaking, unmoving. Fear had gripped his core, but he knew there was no time to waste.

 

“People of Iridýon!” Mikaela spoke in his language, trying his best to project his voice. “You must listen to me. There is no time to waste.”

 

His heart was hammering, and he knew Ferid and the others were there, not far behind him. However, after a quick glance over his shoulder, he saw that Ferid had stopped in his tracks.

 

He was likely realizing that there was nothing he could do now to cover this up and come out innocently.

 

Mikaela narrowed his eyes at him, then turned back to the people. “Events we think to be inconsequential can affect the future unintentionally!” Mikaela announced. “What if you had the power to affect monumental change?” A pause. “Would you let fear consume? Or would you overcome?”

 

The people were captivated now, staring up at Mikaela, at the projections of the Síma- and were likely doing the same all over the planet as well.

 

“We were given a warning,” Mikaela continued. “Courtesy of alien peoples.” The people looked shocked, so Mikaela continued. “I escaped this planet successfully! And with me, I found new species: human beings, and Āvi’s.” Mikaela reached out, tugging Yuuichirou closer to him. He tapped the glamour pod, knowing how it works now, and his Foteinós disguise went away. Then, Yoichi stepped in on his other side and turned his glamour pod off, revealing his true appearance.

 

The Foteinós all watched, marveling at the sight of alien species, all gasping and pointing.

 

“Why do we have the power to learn a language via a simple touch of the lips?” Mikaela announced. “Why can we change the color of our skin to blend in with other people? Why can our bodies adjust to temperature changes and various atmospheres? Do you truly think we are meant to sit idle on our planet forever?”

 

Mikaela’s eyes met Yuuichirou’s, and Mikaela felt the support he needed. With a curt nod, Mikaela faced the people again. “Ferid, our leader, has silenced people like me for countless orb-cycles. He’s marked them off as dead due to various circumstances, but they are alive, and they have been this entire time!”

 

Mikaela made sure to now project the videos on Shinoa’s phone to the people. The Foteinós watched, wide-eyed. Many of them cried out, noticing their loved ones who they previously thought as dead. And Mikaela looked down, seeing them emerge from the Kéntro into the crowds.

 

“Ask your fellow people!” Mikaela went on. “They were held captive, unable to escape, pronounced as dead to their loved ones!” Mikaela continued, “And worst of all, Iridýon has been in the dark of intergalactic monitoring. If we continue to be ignored, we will fall behind, and our race could go extinct!”

 

“Μικαέλα!” Ferid’s voice roared out, and Mikaela continued on, despite his racing heart.

 

“Though this story is not inevitable, and a society does evolve, we can change our fate!” Mikaela proclaimed. “We can change our future! We can change the past!”

 

Yoichi glanced back at Ferid, who was storming towards them. Yuuichirou immediately stepped between them and held his hands up as Mikaela glanced over his shoulder. All the Foteinós seemed to buy Mikaela's story, which was fantastic. Mikaela couldn't believe how much response he was getting.

 

The system suddenly glitched out thanks to Ferid who had shoved them both aside. He didn't look too happy about what Mikaela had done.

 

"Τους πείσες να ρισκάσουν τη ζωή τους!" Ferid whipped around and stalked closer towards Mikaela. There was a fire in his teal eyes. He was frighteningly pretty, but Yuuichirou still didn't like how close Ferid was getting to Mikaela.

 

"Ταξιδεύοντας σε νέα μέρη είναι πάντα επικίνδυνο, αλλά πρέπει να μάθετε από τα λάθη σας!" Yoichi suddenly intervened. Ferid's gaze snapped to Yoichi, immediately noticing him as a different species. There was a look of slight disgust on his face. Ferid didn't think any other species should know their language.

 

"Stop!" Yuuichirou placed his hands against Ferid's chest when he went to go after Yoichi in a fit of rage. Nothing really seemed to calm Ferid down. A large pair of hands grabbed onto Yuuichirou's shoulders and picked him up. Yuuichirou squeaked in surprise.

 

"Typical,” Yuuichirou muttered under his breath. He couldn't move considering his feet weren't even on the ground anymore.

 

“Μην τον αγγίξετε!” Mikaela snarled, stalking to Crowley while baring his teeth. Crowley blinked down at him, looking only slightly surprised at his ferocity.

 

“Έχετε έναν σύντροφο τώρα, Μικαέλα?” Crowley murmured. “Δεν είναι ούτε καν φωτεινός.”

 

“Είναι δικό μου, έτσι τον βάλτε κάτω!” Mikaela snapped, his tail lashing angrily. Crowley slowly lowered Yuuichirou to his feet and as soon as they touched the ground, Mikaela stepped between them and shoved Yuuichirou behind him protectively.

 

“Εάν ανησυχείτε τόσο πολύ για το μέλλον μας-” Ferid began, but was interrupted suddenly.

 

“Μοναδικός!” Krul snapped, approaching him with brisk steps. “Αυτό είναι απαραίτητο για να τους καταλάβετε.” Then, she grabbed Ferid’s shirt collar and yanked him down. Their lips connected for only a moment, for that was all it took.

 

Ferid then blinked a few times, glared at Yuuichirou, and then back at Krul. “So you expect me to speak in this language now?”

 

“Whatever you have to say to us can be heard by them,” Krul argued.

 

Yuuichirou gripped onto Mikaela, peeking over the blond's shoulder at the larger, lilac-colored Foteinós who had picked him up earlier. He frowned at how large he was, with his bright red hair that faded to a black braid down his back.

 

"You know, picking someone up isn't very nice without asking," Yuuichirou huffed out. He gently patted Mikaela's back to calm him down. He didn't need him all riled up; Yuuichirou didn't want Mikaela making any kind of stupid mistakes.

 

"They're not in this! Why would I talk about this around them?" Ferid hissed out. Yuuichirou scowled.

 

"Because Mikaela is someone special to me and I'm here, so you should say to not only us, but to all of those people you trapped within those pods!" Yuuichirou's voice raised as he stepped out from behind Mikaela. He seemed set and determined to not put up with any of Ferid's bullshit and excuses.

 

"I understand being concerned for your kind, and I'm glad to know you didn't actually kill them,” Yuuichirou went on, “but you hid them away from their friends and family!" Yuuichirou stepped forward and Ferid stepped back. The paler Foteinós seemed a tad nervous. "You're messed up about this whole thing because of that incident, but does it really justify what you've done?!"

 

“You don’t know the half of it,” Ferid spat back at him. “You don’t understand any of this, human.”

 

“They understand more than you,” Yoichi countered. “What have you been doing with my planet’s signals? Does planet Vaṉa sound familiar?”

 

Ferid’s eyes slitted and he froze. “Are you…”

 

“From there?” Mikaela narrowed his eyes, speaking up again. “Yes, he is. And it’s your fault that the entirety of Iridýon has been marked down as missing for ages. You have isolated us, your people, from communication with the rest of the galaxy.”

 

“We never knew you existed before!” Ferid tried to argue. “How were we supposed to know that Vaṉa was trying to help us and not attack us?”

 

“Maybe if you had kept Saito’s best interests in mind, you would have cared enough to decipher the messages,” Krul said, dropping the name that caused Ferid to act the way he did. “Saito would have been ashamed.”

 

“Enough!” Ferid yelled, his tail bristling. “Do not bring up my father in this! He died because of his ridiculous instinct to explore, and it cost him his life! I don’t want the same to happen to all of us! That’s what would bring us all to extinction!”

 

"And extinction will come faster if you don't let your people evolve," Yuuichirou's voice broke. "Humans are so far behind that we're killing our planet... but we're adapting and learning better ways to save it.” He lifted his eyes to meet Ferid’s. “If you can't learn to adapt to your own planet and your instinct to explore and learn new things, you'll just reprogress." Yuuichirou sighed, bringing a hand to his face to rub the bridge of his nose.

 

"This is all ridiculous," Yoichi timidly stepped in again. "Planets are willing to help, to prevent another accident from happening and to my understanding, your people have poor understanding of medicine."

 

Ferid flinched but refused to look at any of them.

 

"If some kind of epidemic broke out, you would all die because you wouldn't have any knowledge of how to treat anything other than wounds," Yoichi said and pursed his lips. Ferid spared him a glance, his tail flicking indecisively.

 

"Stop being afraid of change." Shinoa stepped in front of Ferid. She was incredibly short compared to him considering she was about the same height as Krul. "Embrace change. Maybe setting safety regulations would help… but don't isolate your planet."

 

“I’m stepping down.”

 

The sudden words from Ferid’s mouth shocked everyone in the room. They all stared at him in silence, amazed at what they heard.

 

“What?” Kimizuki finally asked. “After all that?”

 

“I’m not fit to be a ruler,” Ferid admitted. “I can’t do this.” But then, Mikaela’s eyes slid down to notice Ferid’s hands, slipping into… something just behind his back. “But I won’t let you destroy all I’ve worked to protect!”

 

It happened quickly. Foteinós weapons were terrifyingly designed, although rarely used. They could be as compact as a toothpick but then suddenly expand to become a full-length sword, a gun, a scythe, anything at all.

 

Mikaela saw it in time to leap in front of Yuuichirou, protecting him from the sudden, wide semi-circle that Ferid cut into the air. Krul cried out and fell down with a gash in her side, and Mikaela turned around, seeing Ferid rushing at him wildly.

 

“Σκατά!” Mikaela hissed, shoving Yuuichirou back as far as he could- which was pretty damn far, considering the strength of Foteinós. He reached behind him and whipped out his own weapon, which instantly turned into a glowing broadsword that blocked Ferid’s slash just in time.

 

“Are you okay!?” Mikaela heard Shinoa tending to Krul, and with sudden fear, he saw Crowley standing to the side, watching it all silently.

 

But he made no move to attack. Mikaela focused again on Ferid, who he was struggling to keep held off. “Παραιτηθεί, Μοναδικός!” Mikaela growled, trembling as he kept his sword in the strained position it was in. “Μπορούμε να είμαστε ειρηνικοί γι 'αυτό!”

 

“Δεν σας αφήνω να μας βάλλετε σε κίνδυνο εξαιτίας των ζωηρικών ενστίκτων σας!” Ferid shouted, rearing back and then recharging for another blow.

 

Their swords clashed and clanged. Mikaela was slipping down the ramp that lead up to the Síma. He grit his teeth, forcing his ferocious gaze on Ferid with challenge.

 

Then, he shoved Ferid back enough to take one step, then another, and another until he was charging back up it, pushing Ferid to the very top. Mikaela held him there, their swords crossed, their eyes glaring at each other angrily.

 

"M-Mika!" Yuuichirou clenched his hands into fists as he pushed himself back up. The push Mikaela had given him had knocked him back onto his ass. There was a dull pain there now, but Yuuichirou wasn't all that focused on it.

 

The sight before them caused Yuuichirou's anxiety to rise. He didn't know what they were saying but he knew Mikaela's life was in danger. He knew that Krul had been hurt.

 

Yuuichirou shoved himself up to his feet, but before he could run and tackle Ferid away from Mikaela, Mitsuba had grabbed onto him from behind. "Let go, he's going to kill Mika!"

 

Mitsuba still held Yuuichirou back. "Sorry, Yuu… but I can't let you get hurt, either!"

 

He soon stopped struggling because he simply didn't have the energy for it. Yuuichirou still couldn't bring himself to look away from the scene even though he wanted to. He wanted to know that Mikaela would be okay. He couldn't bear to lose him.

 

Yuuichirou let out a defeated breath. He glanced over at Krul.

 

Shinoa had managed to stop the excessive bleeding thanks the her knowledge she'd learned from the few medical courses she took. Krul still looked like she was in a lot of pain.

 

Mikaela was pushing Ferid back, farther and farther, not breaking their eye contact in a show of dominance. He would win this fight…

 

Except, there was a sudden blow to his ankle and he fell, losing his balance suddenly. He knew it was Ferid, swinging out his leg when they were so close. It was a dirty trick. Mikaela was suddenly on his back, breathless for a moment with his vision wavering.

 

When he focused on the sight before him, his heart stopped for a moment.

 

Ferid was coming down at him, his sword pointed, aiming right for Mikaela’s heart.

 

“Δεν θα βασιλεύσετε!” Ferid hissed, looking wild, crazed, and long-gone.

 

Mikaela had no choice. He had to act immediately.

 

He grabbed his sword, pointed it up, and rammed right into Ferid’s chest before Ferid could end his life.

 

“Όχι, Μοναδικός, εσείς δεν θα βασιλεύσετε,” Mikaela said, his eyes meeting Ferid’s and watching as their glow began to fade.

 

Ferid coughed as blood spilled over his lip, dripping onto Mikaela. Mikaela narrowed his eyes, trembling and knowing that his sword was currently embedded within Ferid’s body, its glowing, red-hot blade likely a searing pain in his flesh.

 

Mikaela pulled the sword back, making Ferid lose his balance and fall backwards with a thud.

 

Mikaela sat there, trembling as he stared at the former leader’s body. His eyes were dull and his skin was much paler than it was originally; an obvious sign of lifelessness.

 

Ferid was dead. Mikaela was splattered in his blood. His sword retracted and he quivered more, feeling sick and shaken by the incredible adrenaline that was just controlling his every move.

 

Yuuichirou had been so scared that Ferid nearly managed to stab Mikaela. There were obvious angry tears dripping down his face and he suddenly yanked himself out of Mitsuba's hold after Ferid had quite literally fallen. He nearly fell as he hurried his way over to Mikaela, pulling him up into a hug and burying his face into the blond's neck.

 

"You're such an idiot…” He whispered. He tried not to think about how Mikaela had just taken a life and how Ferid was laying on the floor with his own blood pooling around him.

 

Shinoa looked up to the scene before having to look away. Crowley took in a deep sigh, then looked away from Ferid's body a moment before walking over to gather the lifeless Foteinós in his arms.

 

"Ένας ηγέτης τρέχει από φόβο." Crowley stood back up before walking past Yuuichirou and Mikaela.

 

Yuuichirou lifted his head to watch the larger Foteinós walk away with Ferid. He eventually dropped his gaze back down to Mikaela as fresh tears spilled down his cheeks. "That could've easily been you, I ought to slap you." His voice was shaky. He didn't think he had cried this much since his mother had died.

 

He was beginning to realize just how much he cared about Mikaela.

 

Mikaela’s world was spinning. It was like everything that just happened was an illusion; it wasn’t real. It was only a hallucination he had. He didn’t just… actually kill Ferid, did he?

 

But it seemed it was real. Yuuichirou was hugging him, scolding him, and Mikaela was looking at the blood Ferid had left behind.

 

“Yuu-chan…” Mikaela murmured, blinking and trying to refocus on what was happening. He lifted his hands, holding Yuuichirou as well, beginning to feel his emotions catch up with him. His anger and fury faded away and instead was replaced with… something indescribable. He had just ended someone’s life.

 

Mikaela’s eyes watered and he felt himself begin to cry, unsure of what he was feeling. He clutched at Yuuichirou, shaky and stunned at what he had just done with his own two hands.

 

It was terrifying. It was strange. Mikaela clung to his mate, crying and crying, despite the feeling of victory in his heart.

 

Crowley had called for help for Krul and slowly, the world became aware of what had just happened. Apparently, Crowley hadn’t really been interested in helping Ferid… he only did because his life was threatened before. No wonder Crowley had stayed silent throughout everything, not lending a helping hand to Ferid.

 

Mikaela had begun to calm down, his tears slowing now. “Yuu-chan, what have I done…?” He asked softly, unsure of himself, of his future, of everything.

 

Yuuichirou, truthfully, couldn't bring himself to answer Mikaela in more direct words. He was too emotional over what had happened to really put things together. More tears just fell and he held Mikaela closer. "I almost lost you..." He whispered, cradling the back of the blond's head. "I-If you hadn't... I would've lost someone I love so dearly."

 

He leaned away from Mikaela, stroking his cheek with his thumb. Yuuichirou sniffled. "I love you too much to lose you like that; you protected yourself..." He breathed out. "If you hadn't..." Yuuichirou's voice cracked. He took a moment to try and calm himself down.

 

Really, he hadn't meant to get so worked up, but everything had happened so fast. Seeing Mikaela cry made Yuuichirou's heart ache. He helped Mikaela into a sitting position and leaned back as he rubbed at his eyes.

 

A small hiccup left him as his body calmed down from all of the adrenaline and fear. "It doesn't make you a bad person, it was self defense..." He almost winced at his own words, but he didn't want Mikaela dwelling on what had happened for too long. "You're okay. Everyone is." He took Mikaela's face back into his hands and offered a weak smile.

 

Mikaela blinked at him, nodding, processing his words slowly. “Yeah…” His heart was beating at Yuuichirou’s confession of love. He licked his lips and smiled a little, responding softly, “I love you too, Yuu-chan… I think I finally understand what that means.”

 

He still was shaken over everything. He was sure he would be for a long time, but… it was all over. The chaos, the isolation of his planet, the running from his government, from his home.

 

Now, Iridýon could be rebuilt, one step at a time. Beginning with their severed connections… Mikaela looked over to Yoichi, who was watching on with a small, gentle smile on his lips.

 

Kimizuki was at his side, his hand on Yoichi’s shoulder. He still appeared as Foteinós alongside Shinoa and Mitsuba, as they hadn’t turned off their glamour pods quite yet. Mikaela noticed a new understanding in Kimizuki’s eyes; it seemed he was more open-minded after walking in an alien’s shoes.

 

Krul had been bandaged up, by whatever means Mikaela wasn’t sure- he was so wrapped up in what just happened that he didn’t process it all until now. Crowley had returned, approaching the top of the Síma slowly. Mikaela struggled to get to his feet, but he managed and brought Yuuichirou along with him. They stepped down the ramp slowly as Crowley spoke to the public again, explaining what had happened and how this would cause a drastic change in everyone’s lives.

 

Mikaela took a deep breath.

 

He had done it.

 

A new era was beginning. He stared at the faces of the alien people around him- some appearing as Foteinós, some as their own kind- and his heart warmed. Without their help, Mikaela knew he wouldn’t have been able to do this on his own.

 

It was because of alien species that Iridýon could change like this. Mikaela had always known that other cultures and other people were far more important than anyone was giving them credit for. He gripped Yuuichirou’s hand tightly, feeling like this was all a dream, that it hadn’t truly happened.

 

It was surreal. Mikaela needed time to realize the impact he had just made.

 

He had just changed the world- and possibly even the universe, to some extent.

 

--

 

Yuuichirou's hands trailed through Mikaela's hair. He was leaned back against the equivalent of a headboard with Mikaela's head resting on his chest. The large windows had been opened for them both to see the stars instead of keeping the windows opaque. It was nice to relax and not worry about anything life threatening anymore.

 

A few days had passed since the event happened. His friends were taken back to Earth but Yuuichirou decided to stay a little longer. Of course, he made no plans of staying on Iridýon forever, but he still wanted some time with Mikaela.

 

His hands paused when they brushed against Mikaela's ears. Yuuichirou smiled as he brushed his fingers over them. He wasn't sure if Mikaela was asleep or not after they had spent the evening being rather intimate. Yuuichirou had made sure to find the blankets this time so he wasn't cold afterwards and he was able to keep the pillows this time around.

 

Yuuichirou reached over to grab his phone as he leaned over to see Mikaela's eyes closed. He then proceeded to take a picture of him, forgetting that the flash was on.

 

"Oops..." He murmured. He hoped Mikaela was still asleep, but he felt the other shift against him.

 

Mikaela slowly blinked awake, feeling more well rested than he has in a long, long time. His tail stirred to life, swaying back and forth slowly as he became conscious. He saw Yuuichirou above him, a beautiful vision coated with a layer of starlight.

 

He smiled, feeling warmth spread from head to toe. He glowed softly, nuzzling into Yuuichirou’s stomach lightly. Mikaela’s mind was at ease for now. Krul was recovering quickly and she was taken back to Earth to be treated. There, she interacted with the intergalactic commander of Earth, Mahiru- apparently Shinoa’s older sister, as Mikaela had found out. Mahiru was already communicating with Crowley, who had temporarily taken over Iridýon.

 

Krul was returning to Iridýon today with Shinya, apparently. Mikaela sighed at the thought; then, he and Yuuichirou would continue to care for her for a little longer until she was able to watch out for herself. Shinya would offer his help, as he had been helping her on Earth already (and apparently being very annoying, according to Guren, who had called Yuuichirou a few days prior).

 

“There’s so much to do…” Mikaela groaned, since his head had already begun spinning the moment he woke up. “Yuu-chan… I’m tired.”

 

The human blinked before a fond smile pulled over his lips. Yuuichirou sat his phone down as he leaned over to kiss Mikaela's cheek. "I know. You can lay here a little longer, but you'll eventually have to get up." His smile widened as Mikaela's glow only brightened. "Keep this up and I'll have to deem you my personal nightlight.” Yuuichirou gave a small laugh. Mikaela pouted in response, closing his eyes with a small, airy sigh.

 

He glanced at his phone when it went off. It was from Guren, but Yuuichirou made no move to check it. Guren claimed he hated having aliens within his home, but the way he claimed Shinya was annoying was a bit different than from how he complained about Mikaela and Krul being there.

 

His father never really changed; Guren used to do the same with his mother.

 

"Also, I thought your name was Mika, not 'tired.’”A cheeky grin pulled over Yuuichirou's face. Mikaela already looked confused and all Yuuichirou wanted to do was kiss him because he was so cute when he woke up.

 

Mikaela let out a deep sigh. He rolled over off of Yuuichirou’s lap, looking at the ceiling sleepily.

 

On his way out from the Kéntro, Crowley had stopped him, saying simply in their own language:

 

You’re a born leader. I think this is your responsibility now.

 

Mikaela hadn’t responded, but his words had drifted around in Mikaela’s mind ever since. Crowley respected that he needed time to recover and sort things out, but it would be a lie to say he wasn’t thinking about what Crowley had said.

 

He hadn’t told Yuuichirou, because he was nervous and afraid. Becoming the leader of Iridýon would mean he might not have as much freedom to be with Yuuichirou as he’d like.

 

The thought made Mikaela’s heart clench sadly. What was he going to do about it…?

 

Yuuichirou's smile faded as he watched Mikaela. He didn't respond to really anything he had said and Mikaela looked... conflicted and concerned about something. Yuuichirou didn't know how to ask but he shifted and placed a hand on Mikaela's chest as he leaned over him.

 

"Mika...?" He slid his hand up to have Mikaela look at him. Ever since Mikaela had struck Ferid down, he'd been off. "Hey, tell me what's on your mind..."

 

He felt like he was prying, but Mikaela was beginning to worry him. Yuuichirou pursed his lips and moved his hand away. When he moved, he grimaced. Yuuichirou needed a shower, but figuring out what was wrong with Mikaela was his top priority.

 

When he didn't receive an immediate answer, Yuuichirou averted his gaze as he rested his head on Mikaela's chest.

 

Mikaela sighed deeply, curling up a little from guilt. “Sorry, Yuu-chan… I’ve been keeping secrets from you…” He bit his lip, taking in a deep breath. “Crowley… he told me that I should become leader. Of Iridýon… since I took control.”

 

Some silence stretched between them and Mikaela continued, “I’m too… too young for that, aren’t I, Yuu-chan? I could lead, but then I don’t know what would become of us, if I had constant obligations to Iridýon… I couldn’t just go to Earth and enjoy myself. It’s not fair to you if I lead… I don’t know what to do.”

 

Mikaela was really having a hard time with it. He wanted to lead, and he knew he could grow to be a great leader of Iridýon, but what about Yuuichirou? Could he travel as much as he liked, even as leader…?

 

Yuuichirou pursed his lips. That fear from before, the fear of never seeing Mikaela came back… but he stomped it down. Yuuichirou pushed himself up and moved to straddle Mikaela's torso, a determined look on his face.

 

There was some confliction there, but they could work their relationship out. "This… is a big deal, I think you should do it." The words falling past his lips hurt him a little, but he ignored it. "Mika, you could lead your people on a brighter path and if you ever have time, you know where I am."

 

He licked his lips and briefly looked away. His eyes looked glassy with tears that Yuuichirou wanted to deny. "I can't leave and simply give up my life on Earth…  but if you give me a ship, I could probably visit often; of course, you'd have to teach me." He laughed, a small smile appearing. "I'll always find a way to see you, Mika..."

 

Mikaela thought on that for a moment, his fears starting to go away. Yuuichirou could learn to pilot the ship, maybe… or if other Foteinós would be willing to give him rides as they traveled, it would be another option.

 

He worried over if it was even worth all the trouble though. Was it worth it, even though they lived galaxies apart? Even though Mikaela would live for much longer than Yuuichirou and age at a different rate? Even when Yuuichirou would likely be happier with a human mate…?

 

Mikaela hadn’t realized he was tearing up until it was happening. His lips parted and he whispered, “Yuu-chan… you don’t have to… do all of this. Not when… not when it will be so hard for you…”

 

He was so incredibly happy that Yuuichirou wanted to keep seeing him, no matter what it took… still, he couldn’t help but to feel guilty about it. Was he really worth all that trouble?

 

"Of course it's going to be hard!" Yuuichirou suddenly blurted out. His fists clenched against Mikaela's chest and he dropped his head down until he was laying against Mikaela. "You age so much slower, I won't be able to see you and I'm so... in love with you, it kills me to even think of not waking up with you beside me." His voice was shaky. "But I'm willing to let you live your life and do what you need to do as long as I can still be a part of it."

 

He slipped his arms around Mikaela's shoulders and lifted his head, brows furrowing. "It's not hard for just me... it's hard for you too, you can't deny that." Yuuichirou sighed. "The fact that we have shorter life spans already bothers you, I can tell... but please, I want you to do what you need to and I will be here for you. I-I'll even give you a phone or something." He brought his hands up and brushed his fingers over Mikaela's face.

 

"I want to see this beautiful face for as long as I can… but don't chain yourself to me and pass this opportunity up, alright?” Yuuichirou finished.

 

Mikaela gazed at him, his heart warming at the sight of his gorgeous, loving mate. He leaned into Yuuichirou’s touch, his body relaxing slowly. His tears dripped down his cheeks, but he only cried for a moment before he nodded, a light smile on his lips.

 

“I got it…” Mikaela murmured. He took Yuuichirou’s hand and kissed it, feeling warm and comforted. “I’m sorry for worrying you, Yuu-chan… I’m stressed out. But thank you… your comfort means a lot to me.”

 

He pulled Yuuichirou close in a tender hug, pressing a kiss to his head. As long as they could lay like this for just a little longer, the entire universe could wait. To Mikaela, Yuuichirou was the most important, and he always would be.

Chapter Text

Eight Years Later

 

Yuuichirou had a couple of folders labeled NASA to his chest as he briskly walked down the street. He kept them discrete within another plain folder. He didn't need anyone trying to take these important papers away from him. He needed to bring these to Mahiru as soon as he could to settle a trading dispute between a few planets and their own.

 

Seeing spaceships other than their own was a common thing nowadays. Nearly nine years had passed since Mikaela had taken Ferid down and Yuuichirou had to return to his own planet. Thanks to Yoichi, Yuuichirou was able to make an outstanding final essay for his class which, unsurprisingly to Yuuichirou, brought him about an internship with NASA about a year later. He had been excited about it, nonetheless. So much so that Guren had dropped yet another coffee mug. One of which had been a favorite of his.

 

Guren often questioned when Shinya might visit again or the others; though, Yuuichirou never had an answer and usually just smiled at his father.

 

Yuuichirou had been able to visit Mikaela a few times whenever he could. He'd been taught to navigate Foteinós ships and, of course, Yuuichirou's stomach never got used to it. It was something he learned to deal with in order to visit his alien lover.

 

The first few months, nearly up to a year, had been incredibly hard to adjust to. Yuuichirou often missed Mikaela beside him and he had no way of contacting Mikaela then. Even now he was rarely able to, mainly because Mikaela was always busy with something. Yuuichirou never did find someone else to be with, but he never really minded much.

 

Shinoa had reverted back to calling him a cherry boy because he never went out on any kind of dates with anyone unless it was a harmless double date to get some ice cream somewhere.

 

Now, nearly twenty-seven of age, Yuuichirou was practically Mahiru's assistant in alien affairs and trades.

 

Green eyes lifted up to the sky to find what he recognized as a Foteinós ship. It was easy to spot considering he had one in his garage for whenever he was actually free to spend more than a few days to see Mikaela. Sadly, a few Earth days was only a day on Iridýon.

 

Yuuichirou turned slightly as he saw the ship lower down to the ground. He had to lift an arm to keep any kind of dirt from flying into his face. Yuuichirou peeked out once the Spacecraft settled in the middle of the road. Thankfully, there were no cars around.

 

He half expected it to be Shinya, who sometimes dropped by more often than Mikaela did. In fact, Mikaela hadn't visited Earth in years so Shinya was who Yuuichirou had expected to see step out of the ship.

 

No, instead it was who Yuuichirou most wanted to see.

 

Out stepped the utterly beautiful Igétis of Iridýon, Mikaela.

 

Mikaela was looking more dignified than ever, with a broader stature since he was at his full-grown size. He was much taller than before, with aged features and a wisdom in his eyes that grows every year. A graceful cape draped behind him, signaling his regal position on his planet.

 

Despite all of this, a soft, loving expression made his gaze tender as he breathed out, “Yuu-chan…”

 

The loving nickname hadn’t gone away, even after all these years, and even after both of them had changed and grown significantly. Mikaela stepped forward, his heart pounding with joy as he pulled Yuuichirou into his arms, cradling his smaller, yet adult human lover in his arms. “I’ve missed you… that business trip took so long, and I didn’t mean to be gone for so long…”

 

Ruling an entire planet was a busy job, as Mikaela had known it would be, but luckily he had Crowley and Krul to rule alongside him. Akane had also gained a high position in government and had become great friends with Yuuichirou and the other humans on earth. She was even responsible for giving them rides to Iridýon a lot of the time, especially when Shinya stayed on Earth longer than he said he would to “look at the plants.”

 

This was true, but they all knew he wanted to spend more time with a certain, begrudged father who had a tendency of breaking coffee mugs.

 

Mikaela had his own responsibilities anyhow, and it was difficult to see Yuuichirou at times. Now was one of those times, but a window of time had finally opened up to Mikaela to pay a personal visit to his beloved mate.

 

Mikaela’s tail wandered, freely wrapping around Yuuichirou’s waist as it always had done to hold him close.

 

Yuuichirou's eyes had widened the moment Mikaela set foot off the ship. He nearly dropped his folders as the sudden urge to jump into Mikaela's arms arose.

 

As soon as Mikaela's arms moved around him, Yuuichirou was quick to jump up and wrap around him, burying his face into Mikaela's neck. He was a bit glad Mikaela was so sturdy and immediately shifted his hold on Yuuichirou so neither of them would fall. He felt a bit childish with his legs wrapped around Mikaela's waist, but he had missed the other so much.

 

Just hearing Mikaela say his name was enough to make his heart explode.

 

Gripping the folders tightly in one hand, Yuuichirou leaned back and placed his free hand to Mikaela's cheek. "Hey... long time no see; don't worry about it." He breathed out a laugh, a giddy smile on his face. He looked upon Mikaela's features, tracing over his jawline and glancing down at his clothing.

 

Mikaela really did look older. Yuuichirou was sure he definitely did too. He was a bit surprised Mikaela even recognized him. He'd gotten broader and a bit taller but Mikaela definitely beat him in the aspect of being tall. It was kind of unfair but Yuuichirou didn't really mind.

 

"Tell me you're done growing, because I could never reach your height,” Yuuichirou laughed out. "I'm only going to get shorter from here on out." He grinned, though there was a hint of sadness there.

 

At the moment, he was just too happy to see Mikaela.

 

Mikaela laughed a bit, squeezing Yuuichirou tightly. He hadn’t been separated from Yuuichirou for too long- only about 4 or 5 Earth years- but it still felt like far too long. “I’m fully grown,” Mikaela assured, his eyes still gleaming with laughter.

 

They had definitely aged, but Yuuichirou was still just as cute as Mikaela remembered. Not caring of the world around them- it was pretty quiet on this side street, anyways- Mikaela tugged him close, bringing their lips together in a well-needed kiss.

 

Mikaela’s tail curled, tightening around Yuuichirou’s waist. He only savored the feeling for a moment before pulling away, gazing lovingly at Yuuichirou. “Of course I’d recognize you, Yuu-chan… how could I forget what my mate looks like?”

 

Not only that, but now that he had been mated to Yuuichirou, he had a sort-of tracker embedded in his brain biologically. Foteinós could detect who was their mate from far, far away- hence why Mikaela could spot Yuuichirou from bird’s eye view.

 

“You’re still so adorable,” Mikaela gushed, cuddling Yuuichirou close to him again. “I think about you every day…”

 

The blush that spread over Yuuichirou's face was rosy and his smile was wide. He'd missed Mikaela so much that he couldn’t help but to steal another kiss from him.

 

"And you're just as dorky as I remember." He shifted to slip out of Mikaela's grip so he was standing on his own two feet again. He straightened the folders back out. "I think about you just as much, if not more." Yuuichirou sighed out, casting his gaze to the side. "Even at work."

 

He pushed some hair behind his ear and peeked back up at Mikaela. "I see you're doing well for yourself... how long will you be staying?" He asked. "I've got a few things to run to Mahiru and I'm free."

 

He was always afraid to ask how long Mikaela could stay because they both had things to do. Yuuichirou just only wished they could spend more time together.

 

Mikaela smiled warmly, keeping his tail resting against Yuuichirou’s side to maintain some form of contact. “I can stay for an Earth month, actually… I’m getting some time off because Krul is helping me.” Mikaela fidgeted a little bit, looking off to the side shyly. “I hope that’s alright, Yuu-chan…”

 

Mikaela then lifted his eyes back up to Yuuichirou. He had his own place now, after all. That meant they didn’t have to worry about bothering Guren anymore. “It’s your birthday soon, isn’t it, Yuu-chan? We can celebrate together!” He then paused, seeing the folder of papers again. “Ah, right, uh- go do that first. I’ll fly over to your house. I remember where it is.”

 

But first… Mikaela leaned in, pressing another sweet kiss to Yuuichirou’s lips. “I’ll see you there?”

 

"Do you?" Yuuichirou smiled against Mikaela's lips. He reached up and patted the side of Mikaela's face before stealing yet another kiss. He'd missed Mikaela so much, all he wanted to do was stand there and kiss him. His mood raised even more at the fact that he'd be spending an entire month with him.

 

He leaned away and offered his hand to Mikaela. "I actually moved since the last time you visited, NASA is pretty kind with pay." He grinned, hinting at the fact that he'd been given his career choice. "I'm sure Mahiru wouldn't mind meeting you."

 

Mikaela smiled; he had been in contact with Mahiru before, as leaders need to communicate, but he hadn’t actually talked to her in person. It would get one diplomatic meeting out of the way in a more casual comfortable setting. “Okay… if you don’t mind. I can give you a ride!”

 

Mikaela nodded to his ship, then guided Yuuichirou over to it. Since they met, it had been rebuilt and fixed many times, upgraded and polished. Mikaela’s ship could now travel even faster, and the rest of the Foteinós population now owned ships like the first model that Mikaela made. It was revolutionary that now, any Foteinós could travel anywhere.

 

They both got into Mikaela’s ship; it wouldn’t take long, since Yuuichirou was walking to begin with and they weren’t far from where they needed to be, but it was a nice favor from Mikaela to Yuuichirou.

 

A short ride later, they got where they needed to be. Mikaela didn’t bother disguising himself as he used to. Humans were now aware of and acceptant of alien species, considering how Earth has stopped being so secretive about their contact with aliens. He strode in alongside Yuuichirou, simply happy to be with his mate, nodding politely to passing humans. Most of them stared in awe, already knowing about Mikaela and his superior position on his own planet.

 

They entered a classy office space, where Mikaela immediately recognized the woman he had spoken to via voice call and video call. She had her lilac hair loose around her shoulders as she circled something on a white board. She heard the entrance of others and turned over her shoulder, blinking her long eyelashes at the two.

 

“Μικαέλα?” Mahiru said in perfect Foteinós-speak. “Τι έκπληξη για να σας δω εδώ! Ή μήπως όχι…” She shifted her eyes to Yuuichirou with a knowing smile on her lips. “I suppose it’s only natural for you to want to spend time with your mate, after all.”

 

Mikaela beamed, looking to Yuuichirou with all sorts of love in his eyes. “It’s been too long. It’s a pleasure to finally meet you in person. Χαιρετίσματα.”

 

“Χαιρετίσματα,” Mahiru returned with a little nod. She shifted her attention to Yuuichirou with an amused glint in her brown eyes. “So, Yuu… I hope you don’t get too distracted from work with your hunky σύζυγος around!”

 

Mikaela blushed from the term, seeing how she translated a Japanese word- husband- into Foteinós-speak. It was a term that didn’t exist for Foteinós, but Mikaela completely understood the connotation behind it and it flustered him. It implied a lot of human behaviors and social impressions. His tail flicked, amused by her teasing.

 

Yuuichirou narrowed his eyes at the word, feeling a blush rise to his face. He'd been studying Mikaela's language for a few years so the term didn't pass over his head like some other words did.

 

"Funny..." Yuuichirou sighed out before placing his hand on his hip in a sassy manner. "I just might get distracted from work because of my 'Καυτός εραστής,’ don't test me." He frowned at her. He wasn't able to translate 'hunky' so 'hot' would have to do. He stuttered a bit when speaking those words but overall, Mahiru seemed impressed.

 

"I see you can't pronounce σύζυγος just yet, but lover works fine, too,"she giggled a bit to herself. Yuuichirou's face reddened further and he looked away. He quickly walked over to hand her the folders while avoiding eye contact.

 

He cleared his throat. "There's been a minor issue with a trading route, a few rogues have them blocked off; they want to know what you suggest doing." He finally looked over at Mahiru. "Also, there's been a new star system discovered that you might be interested in; it's listed in there as well."

 

Mikaela watched silently as Mahiru and Yuuichirou discussed what they had to, flipping through paperwork and mapping out where the star system was. He made his own mental notes as well, but he couldn’t lie- he was incredibly distracted by Yuuichirou, noticing how he looked more worn and aged, with a less-youthful glow to his skin.

 

He was still adorable, of course. Mikaela loved him nonetheless, but he was certainly different than how he was when he was 19 and 20 years old. He felt proud to have known Yuuichirou for so long to have seen this change; he was even more proud to have been head-over-heels in love with him all this time as well.

 

Soon their discussion was over and Mikaela followed Yuuichirou’s instructions to his new home. It saddened Mikaela to know he lived here alone most of the time, even if he had Guren over sometimes as well as his friends, it must get lonely for him. Mikaela’s heart ached, wishing he could be there permanently.

 

This feeling of guilt faded away as they walked inside. He was just glad to be there as much as he could, for as long as he could. And even throughout all these years, Yuuichirou had been loyal to him and loved him back… so of course it was worth it.

 

Yuuichirou pushed the door open to his home and pursed his lips. "I suppose he isn't home yet..." He said quietly. Yuuichirou stepped inside and removed his shoes as he ran his fingers through his hair. His jacket came off last as he turned towards Mikaela and smiled at him.

 

"Make yourself at home." He hung his jacket up and placed his hands up. "You'll be disappointed to know that I have tons of coffee in my cupboards as well as other things you hate." Yuuichirou was being cheeky.

 

"But…” he held up a finger. "The one thing you love is here; and that's me." Yuuichirou pursed his lips and looked to the side. He rubbed the back of his head before opening his mouth to continue. "Also, there's someone else-"

 

The door opened just then and a kid around the age of six or seven came running inside. He looked similar to Yuuichirou, but someone could easily tell they weren't related, plus the boy's hair was a lighter brown than Yuuichirou's.

 

"Papa!"

 

Mikaela was, at first, wondering if Yuuichirou had tried to get another mate. He knew some humans were open to that sort of practice, but Mikaela’s blood ran cold at the thought. He was particularly protective of his mate and the thought of him being with anyone else deeply unsettled him.

 

But when a small boy came into the home, Mikaela’s heart stopped. He stared at the child, too stunned to react for a moment. The child had just referred to Yuuichirou as his guardian…

 

He turned quickly. “Y-Yuu-chan, did I actually impregnate you!?” Was this child his own? Then why didn’t he have any Foteinós traits? To Mikaela’s knowledge, male humans couldn’t bear children, but what if something was different-

 

“No, no!” Yuuichirou shook his head quickly, his cheeks reddening fast. “I adopted him. His name is Kouta.” Yuuichirou smiled and knelt down beside Kouta, putting a hand on his shoulder and nodding to Mikaela. Kouta was staring at him with wide eyes, likely stunned from his appearance.

 

“This is the Mika I told you so much about,” Yuuichirou said. “Say hello.”

 

Mikaela was standing there, his tail waving side to side with joy. He looked down at this child with so much love in his heart that he was smiling. He felt an instant connection with Kouta, as if this child was truly his own.

 

If he was Yuuichirou’s child, then he was Mikaela’s as well. Mikaela said, “I’m Mika. Your name is Kouta…?” He knelt down, smiling warmly at the boy. “In my language, your name would be ευωδιά, or Evodiá.”

 

Kouta stared in awe. He timidly walked over to Mikaela and placed a hand onto the alien's face. "Papa, he's so cool!" He breathed out, a wide grin over his face. "Papa loves you a lot, I can see why!" He giggled and raised his arms. "You're really tall, it's funny because that makes Papa really short."

 

Yuuichirou frowned for only a second but he couldn't help but to laugh to himself. He stood back up and brushed himself up. "You're always an odd one, Kouta... I adopted him three years ago after his parents threw him out." He stepped over and picked Kouta up as Mikaela stood up again. Kouta wrapped his arms around Yuuichirou's shoulders as he continued to stare at Mikaela.

 

"It's less lonely around here with him around, but... I still wish you were here to help raise him." His smile took a melancholy turn. "I hope you'll come to visit him even after I'm gone."

 

"I've got two dads..." Kouta breathed.

 

Yuuichirou's smile returned. "You sure do, Kouta."

 

“Hey, wanna play?” Kouta asked, squirming in Yuuichirou’s arms. “Can you be the villain and I’ll be a hero? And then you have to chase me and I’ll fight you, and…”

 

Kouta continued to ramble on, beginning to make less and less sense. Mikaela laughed warmly, finding a pause in his rant to say, “Okay, let’s play!”

 

Yuuichirou set Kouta down, allowing the little boy to dart into his room to get what he wanted to dress as a superhero. Mikaela turned back to Yuuichirou, his eyes gleaming.

 

“He’s perfect,” Mikaela said, stepping closer to pull Yuuichirou against him warmly. Inside, he promised to find a way to visit far more often instead of years at a time. Now that there was a child involved, he was sure he could find a way to get more time to spend with them. He nuzzled into Yuuichirou’s cheek, pressing a soft kiss there. “I love him… I love you.”

 

Yuuichirou closed his eyes, looking more than content as his arms slipped around Mikaela's shoulders. He returned the kiss to Mikaela's jaw instead of his cheek. "I can't believe you thought I birthed him." He laughed out. "You're such a goof… but I love you so much, Mika."

 

He stepped back and brought his hands to Mikaela's face. "You always amaze me." He leaned up and briefly pecked Mikaela's lips. With a sigh, he glanced over at Kouta struggling to pull his toy sword out. "I don't believe in second lives… but if they exist, maybe we can spend our lives together all the time then." His gaze moved back to Mikaela. "But I'm content with my life as is, just knowing you has made it better; not once has it made it painful for me in the end."

 

He paused. "Sorry…” Yuuichirou laughed out. "It's just been so long since I've spoken or seen you, I suppose I'm saying strange things but I really do miss you..." His eyes became watery for a moment.

 

Mikaela pulled him close again, squeezing him tightly as grief pinched his heart. “I’m sorry, Yuu-chan… I promise I will come by often. At least once an Earth-month…” He rubbed up and down Yuuichirou’s back lovingly. “And you and Kouta can come to Iridýon when you have time.” He then pulled back to smile at Yuuichioru. “How does that sound?”

 

Yuuichirou smiled back at him, but before he could give a formal answer, Kouta darted out from his room with a cape thrown about his shoulders. “Let go of Papa, you villain! I’m the toughest hero around!”

 

Mikaela grinned, reaching down and scooping Yuuichirou into his arms. With an evil cackle and a swishing tail, he went, “Never! He’s my hostage now!”

 

“Wha- Mika!” Yuuichirou gasped, blushing and laughing with surprise at being lifted up.

 

“I’ll catch you!” Kouta declared, running after Mikaela soon after Mikaela began his escape with Yuuichirou in his arms.

 

“Save me, Kouta!” Yuuichirou cried out dramatically, laughing harder as he tipped his head back to peer at his son from over Mikaela’s shoulder.

 

In that moment, nothing else mattered. The universe continued on, and both Mikaela and Yuuichirou knew how huge it was. They know so much about its politics, its people and its troubles. They were millions of light years apart, and yet, no amount of distance could make them stop loving each other.

 

Today and forever, they were family, and they always would be.

 

END