A/N: So, had to think this one over for a while, but finally got back to it.
And for those of you who were wondering… that last chapter was probably the most explicit it’s going to be. Which isn’t to say that there won’t be any more sexuality. It just won’t be quite that intense. It’ll also be less confusing!
Happy Endings Are All the Same:
Dinner had been even more excruciating than the night before, hemmed in by his mother and his friend, aware of his actions that morning. He’d waited a long time before returning to the room, even after he’d taken his shower, and Toshio had been gone. He’d been hoping for some respite before he had to see the other man, but he had had no such luck.
He had left them over tea, apologizing profusely and insisting that he had to do some writing before it was too late. He’d gotten behind on his manuscript – which was true enough, but he stared vacantly out the open door at the gathering fireflies instead, unable to focus. By the time Toshio walked in, he had barely written a half page.
Seishin stood up too quickly, tipping the writing desk and scattering his mostly blank pages. He dropped to his knees quickly, hastily gathering them up, searching for the pen. Toshio joined him, and handed him the elusive pen, “What’s the rush for?”
Seishin put the paper and the pen back on the desk, straightening up once again, avoiding Toshio’s eyes, “I… I’m going to go to bed. I have to wake up early to-morrow, and the futon hasn’t been rolled out yet.” He moved past Toshio, going to the bureau for pajamas, “So… I want to get that done so I’m not up so late…”
Toshio frowned, “But the futon is already out.”
“I’m not sleeping in here.” He said thickly, “The guest room.”
He froze as her felt Toshio grasp his arm, his hands warm, “What do you mean you’re not sleeping in here?”
“I…” He let his hand drop against the clothing in the open drawer, and swallowed, “I… can’t.”
He could feel a flush creeping up his neck, coloring his pale skin, but Toshio was saying nothing. His breathing was just barely audible, if only because the summer insects had mainly gone to their rests. The quiet season was setting in; all that would bring noise now would be the howling winter wind around the treetops and hills.
Seishin swallowed again, forced himself to speak, his voice barely louder than a whisper, “Because… if we sleep in that bed… I’ll…” A pause, “I’ll want to touch you… and I’ll want you… to touch me…”
The grip on his arm was still tight, but he couldn’t bring himself to turn and look at the other man. So he stood, gazing down into the bureau drawer, his heart pounding, a sort of misery already preparing him for the worst.
Toshio cleared his throat, almost said something, didn’t. He thought back to the morning, and his thoughts at the clinic, the envelope, too, although he hadn’t yet opened it.
He blinked, surprised he’d said it, and Seishin had turned to face him, shock clear on his face. But it wasn’t surprising, was it? Toshio knew that he wasn’t always swift about everything, but it was pretty easy to connect the dots in all of it, wasn’t it? When one is fourteen, everything means a hard-on. When one is twenty-seven? And has kissed you? And is tightly up against you, wrapped in your arms?
Seishin turned away again, refusing to look him in the eyes, “Don’t do this to me…”
“I’m not trying to hurt you.” He pulled him closer, his own heart racing, his mouth going dry, “Seishin, I… I’m not sure what I’m doing, but” He forced the other man to look at him, “I know that I don’t want to lose you.”
“Toshio… don’t do this just because you’re afraid of what I might do to myself.” There was unhappiness clear in his voice.
“Dammit, Seishin, that’s not what I’m thinking!”
“Then what is?”
“I… I don’t know.” He was frustrated, and he loosened his grip suddenly, “Dammit, I don’t know!”
“Let go of me, Toshio.” His head was angled away, and he looked uncomfortable, “I’m tired; I want to go to sleep.”
“Seishin… Seishin, just look at me, okay?”
There was a hand on his face, he realized, gently bringing him to face his friend again. It stayed there, light but insistent, and he heard Toshio take a deep breath before he kissed him.
It didn’t last long, but he was definitely being kissed by the doctor. When it ended, he let Toshio embrace him, could feel the hammering of the other man’s heart even above his own.
“We don’t have to sleep in the same bed. And I don’t really know what I’m doing. But I’m not going to hurt you. Don’t sleep in the guest room. Stay here.” He hesitated slightly, and then added, “Please.”
Although he regarded it as a moment of weakness, he said it nevertheless: “Yes.”