Title: Painful Days and Stormy Nights Chapter 8: Aftermath
Pairing: Ohno/Aiba, KimuShingo, RyoJin, Takki/Sakamoto, might also become Sakumiya, Nagase/Koichi and one-sided Miyake/Sakamoto (As for the others I don't know yet... (PiKame or TegoPi? KameUchi? What's with Jun?)
Genre: AU, family, friendship, romance, angst, drama
Disclaimer: I don't own them or anything else JE-related. But the story is mine of course^^
Summary: It's all about the aftermath: Kame's and Uchi's plan failed and they have to deal with different problems... Yamapi has to face Ryo while Koichi fears about his reputation and Jun explodes.
Takki and Sakamoto talk to each other the first time after their argument, same goes for Ryo and Takki.... and Ryo calls Ueda, in concern about Maru... while Maru has to deal with his problems alone.
And in the meantime Aiba has to consider if Ohno is worth it to fight the shadows of his past.
A very sleepy Koichi opened the door when Sakamoto ringed at it. It was his only day off, the only night where he could sleep long and calmly. “Yes?” He eyed the guy in front of him grumpily. Why was this guy here? At such an hour? And with two strange ladies and a young boy?
“I believe those two belong to you, Koichi-san?” Sakamoto smiled wickedly, a sarcastic tune in his voice. The moment he saw Koichi's surprised look, he had slowly started to understand the meaning behind this event, including Ryo’s upset expression.
Koichi was awake immediately and stared at the guys in front of him in disbelief. “Uchi? Kame?” Then his gaze wandered towards the boy, even more surprised now. “Ryo-kun?”
Ryo forced himself to smile a bit. “Good evening.” He mumbled.
“And you are?” Koichi stared at Sakamoto.
“Sakamoto Masayuki” The man answered simply. “It’s a pleasure to meet you.” he teased sarcastically.
Koichi nearly fell out of the door again, his eyes scanning Sakamoto in disbelief. “Takki-san’s mentor?” At that Ryo glared at him, making Koichi feel slightly uncomfortable as he knew that Ryo was pretty well aware about everyting. “Do you want to come in?” he asked politely. In his minds his thoughts were already going crazy. His gaze was pinned at Uchi and Kame, both guys looking pretty uncomfortable, Uchi totally pale and even Kame looking scared. While this Sakamoto guy was really intimidating... Koichi had never met him before in person, but he had heard about him, his reputation was immense and so was his aura.
When the door to Yamapi’s room flew open and he heard a well-known voice, he nearly jumped. He blinked at Ryo in surprise. “Ryo-chan? What are you doing here?”
Ryo stared at him, staying quiet for a moment. He clenched his fists to stay calm. “Real estate? Architecture?” he finally asked without even answering Yamapi’s question.
Yamapi stared at him, biting his lips nervously. How did Ryo find out? When? Why was he here so late at night? “How?” he whispered.
“Because these two idiots sneaked into my brother’s Host Club, dressed as girls…” Ryo grumbled angrily.
Yamapi blinked at him in disbelief. Who did what? It couldn’t be Jun who had such a stupid idea… Uchi? Kame? Yamapi shook his head a bit, shifting around, feeling totally uncomfortable. But it was definitely not the right moment to wonder about this, since Ryo was still glaring at him angrily. “I can explain it…”
“Well, then explain!” Ryo demanded.
Yamapi took a deep breath. “Koichi and your brother hate each other… they had a huge fight some years ago…”
“And?” Ryo asked impatiently.
“They absolutely dislike each other!” Yamapi tried to explain.
Ryo stared at him in annoyance, his eyes sparkling angrily. “That’s it?? Because my brother doesn’t like your cousin? This reason is too stupid to be the real one!”
Yamapi looked at him sheepishly. “I just thought you wouldn’t like to be my friend…no matter what you say, your brother’s opinion is important for you. Or what if your brother knew about Koichi being my cousin and told you not to meet me?”
“Are you nuts?” Ryo yelled, eyes sparkling in wrath. “Takki would never do something like that! And even if… Maybe it didn’t cross your mind, but I give a shit about what my brother thinks!”
“Yo!” the door to Yamapi’s room flew open and a very sleepy Jun blinked into the room. “Pi, please turn the TV down a bit… I can’t sleep with so much noise around…” He blinked for a moment when he saw Ryo, immediately forgetting his sleepiness, his eyes looking at the other in his earnest Host-way. “Oh… Ryo-kun? You are here? How nice.” He smiled a bit.
Ryo stared at him, his eyes still sparkling. “Yeah… but I have to go now.” With that he turned around, hurrying out of the room, leaving a very confused Jun behind. “What was that?”
“Kame and Uchi, these two idiots went to Takki-san’s Host Club… undercover... as girls.” Pi breathed out, nearly crying.
For a moment Jun was speechless, he stared at Yamapi in disbelief. “Kame… and… Uchi… did…” he took a deep breath. “WHAT!?” He padded Yamapi's shoulder absent-mindedly, before he turned around to rush out of Yamapi’s room, heading downstairs. Out of the corner of his eyes he could see how Ryo and Sakamoto left the house, but he was too pre-occupied with staring at Uchi and Kame in utter shock to even think about who Sakamoto was.
“What are you wearing?” Jun pressed out.
Uchi looked at Jun in utter shock, to intimidated to say anything now, while Kame thought it would be wiser to simply not to answer this question..
“Are you NUTS, you IDIOTS!!” Jun yelled at them, eyes sparkling in wrath. “You did… You really did… You… I can’t believe you did THAT!”
“Sorry…” Uchi mumbled sheepishly, tears glittering in his eyes.
Kame stared at Jun, feeling uncomfortable. “Did Ryo-kun talk to Yamapi?”
“Is that your ONLY PROBLEM! You IDIOT!?” Jun blurt out in anger. “You are…”
But before Kame got to know what he was, a door on the second floor flew open and Tsubasa leaned over the stair-case. “I know you guys are free…” he mumbled sleepily. “And you can sleep tomorrow. But do you have to make such a fuss here? You know... some of us have to go to work tomorrow.” His eyes suddenly discovered Uchi and Kame, but he was too tired to wonder too much. “Why are you two looking like girls? Carnival?” With that he turned around again, planning to go back to sleep, when his eyes caught a very gloomy Yamapi, standing somewhere at the corridor. “Yamapi?” he asked carefully, approaching the younger one.
Lucky for Uchi and Kame Tsubasa’s appearance had distracted Jun. The latter shook his head, glaring at the other two. “I need a glass he water…” he grumbled, before eyeing the two guys angrily again. “We’ll still talk about that!” Then he pointed at Uchi. “Stop crying!” he demanded, sighing a bit. “It’s ruining your make up… You look even more grotesque like that!”
“Yeah.” Koichi agreed firmly, watching how Jun went to the kitchen. The moment Jun had closed the door behind him, Koichi looked at Kame and Uchi, different emotions fighting within him. He wasn't feeling angry like Jun... he was actually feeling really worried. What if word spread around that some of his guys spied on another Host Club. It might totally ruin his reputation. The feeling of not knowing what Sakamoto might be up to made Koichi go crazy... Or what Takki would do when he found out about it. Would he ruin Koichi? Well, he could... definitely.
Koichi sighed deeply, at least he could make the best out of it. He looked at the boys curiously. “So?”
Kame blinked at him. “So what?”
Koichi’s eyes still looked at them quite disappointed, but there was also a curious glance. “How was it? Since you were stupid enough to go to this place with these clothes and ruin my reputation… at least tell me: How is the Host Club? I just heard it’s really fancy… So?”
The kitchen door flew open again. “I can’t believe you!! Koichi!!” Jun called out angrily, shifting his anger towards the older one now.
“Everything alright?” Sakamoto asked carefully when he drove Ryo back home.
“Sure.” Ryo mumbled, sounding rather depressed than convincing.
“Yes… of course.” Sakamoto smiled at the boy, though he didn’t believe a word. But before he could say anything else, Ryo pointed at a street sign. “Could you drop me of at the Host Club?”
Sakamoto sighed a bit. “I know you are free tomorrow though it’s Monday, but don’t you want to go to sleep a bit?”
Ryo looked out of the car’s window, leaning his forehead against it. “Yes… but I…”
“You want to see Jin?” Sakamoto ended his sentence. “But Jin is already asleep… and he has to work tomorrow.” When he caught the expression on Ryo’s face, he sighed a bit, stroking over the younger one's hair. “How about… Sleep over it. Get some distance so that you can see everything better. Sometimes it helps…”
“Maybe…” Ryo mumbled.
“And when you wake up tomorrow, you can talk to Jin about everything.” Sakamoto suggested, his serious and soft way to talk calming Ryo down a bit. It was difficult for him to stay stubborn around Sakamoto. “Alright.” he agreed.
“What’s going on?” Takki asked when he met Sakamoto later. They had finished work in the Host Club. Okada and Sho were already asleep, while Aiba had sneaked out of the Host Club after work… acting really suspicious. Takki slightly wondered if there was something going on in Aiba’s life…Hopefully something good, he would hate it to see Aiba crushed again.
And Jin? Jin had gone to bed when he came home from his meeting with Ryo… And when Takki had closed all the doors, setting the alarm, he had finally found the time to wonder about Sakamoto’s absence. He was still feeling uneasy because of the talk they had about Ryo-chan.
He knew Sakamoto was right, but it was difficult to admit that. It was true… maybe he was afraid. But how should he ever approach Ryo like that? Force him to talk about his problems? It was already difficult enough to make him talk about simpler things that were going on in his life… Maybe everything would calm down with time? Takki didn’t know why or when it happened that he and Ryo grew apart like that… they were so close before… and he didn’t know how to ask Ryo about that… It was impossible, he thought. He had to solve this in a more sensible way. Yes, maybe he was too afraid to face Ryo directly like that. But the thing he was afraid the most was to loose him completely.
He shifted his attention back to Sakamoto, looking at him through questioning eyes.
Sakamoto smiled weakly. “Well, well… let me ask you a question instead. Alright?”
“Sure.” Takki blinked in surprise.
“Do you remember Koichi-san?”
Aiba sat up a bit, his gaze shifting to the person lying next to him. He stroked over Ohno's skin carefully, it was so soft... his hands so warm... and gentle. Aiba had never met someone with such gentle hands before. He flinched at this thought, his mind going his way, back into his memories.
Aiba sank bed into his bed, eyes looking up to the ceiling, remembering long ago incidents. He sighed a bit. Damn. Why couldn't he simply let it rest and start new? But deep inside his mind he knew it wasn't that easy... it was never easy. Was Ohno worth it to try it? Would Ohno hurt him? Would he be able to bear the truth?
Aiba jumped out of the bed, not being able to hold such thoughts now. He sneaked into the bathroom silently, slipping into his clothes again, before he wrote a note for Ohno, telling him he suddenly had to leave for work. It was a lie. But better than to let Ohno wake up alone, not knowing what had happened.
Aiba took a deep breath when he stepped outside, feeling the cold morning breeze on his face. His mind cleared up a bit as he looked up to the window of Ohno's apartment. Was Ohno worth it?
“Yes?” Ueda mumbled into his phone, still a bit sleepy. He had planned to sleep really really long. Monday… and the day was off!! How rare was that? But the phone ringing had woke him up. Okay… it was already 11 AM, but still…
“It’s me. Ryo.” Ryo tried to sound as friendly as he could. Nothing against Ueda, he was just totally not in the mood of talking now. But gladly Ueda wasn’t the type who was chatting a lot. “I’m calling because of Maru.”
“Ah.” Ueda made, slightly wondering why Ryo was sounding so strange. “And?”
“Well, we’ll wait a bit and try to find out what’s going on.” Ryo explained, carefully avoiding it to say Yamapi’s name out loud. “We could follow him after school and see what’s really happening.”
Something in Ueda’s mind was telling him that this maybe wasn’t the best solution… maybe too dangerous… too much risk… what if something would happen to them? But he shrugged it off. He was 15 after all! Not 25! And following Maru on his way home had also come to his mind already. “Alright.” he agreed.
Ryo blinked for a moment. “You really want to join us?”
“Yes. You think I’m chickening out?” Ueda nearly sounded defended.
Ryo grinned a bit. “Not really…” he paused for a moment. “I just thought you wouldn’t care that much.” He took a deep breath, realising that what he was saying here might have sounded impolite, though he didn’t mean it like that. “Sorry. Not really ‘not caring’. More…well… you are a bit hard to read through.”
Ueda smiled a bit. “I got what you mean… no need to apologize.”
“So…” Ryo tilted his head a bit. “You’ll come with us?” he asked though he slightly wondered how they would manage to follow Maru while he and Yamapi were still fighting.
“Yes.” Ueda agreed, pausing a bit, before he took a deep breath, wondering why he cared so much. “What’s with you? You sound so strange…”
“Nothing…” Ryo tried to reassure him. “I just didn’t sleep well.” Well, that wasn’t even a lie, he thought, hoping that Ueda would buy it.
Apparently he was lucky, because Ueda sounded a bit relieved. “Alright then.” Ueda smiled a bit. “See you tomorrow then.”
“Bye.” Ryo said before hanging up, his head resting against the wall now. He so needed to see Jin now...
Ryo turned around, seeing how Takki came down from upstairs. He sighed a bit. Hopefully Takki wouldn’t ask… questions. He surely had met Sakamoto yesterday… just how much did he know?
“Good morning.” Takki smiled weakly, actually wanting to ask a hundred questions, starting with Koichi’s house, Koichi’s little cousin, the two boys that came to the club yesterday and Ryo’s problems with Yamapi. But he decided to better not intervene too much.
Ryo sighed in relief as Takki didn't ask anything immediately. He forced a tiny smile on his lips. “Good morning.”
“You are on the way to meet Jin?” Takki asked carefully.
“Yes.” Ryo nodded his head. “I’ll be back for a late lunch.”
Takki smiled softly. “Well…Subaru is still asleep. And Nino already left to meet Sho-kun. So you can take your time.” Takki sighed a bit, wondering slightly why Nino was so busy with Sho recently...
“Alright.” Ryo smiled a bit
Takki looked at him thoroughly when the younger one was about to leave the house. “It’s okay.” he reassured him.
Ryo blinked at him. “Eh?”
Takki tilted his head, smiling at him. “It’s okay to be upset, just… don’t overreact.” he paused. “And there is something else… I would never tell you not to meet your friend just because I’m not on good terms with his cousin.” he finally made clear.
“I know.” Ryo sighed a bit. “I didn’t know who his cousin is.”
Takki smiled a bit. “ I just want you to know that I don’t want you to hide such things because I snapped last time.”
Ryo rolled his eyes a bit, but it was more a friendly way of being annoyed than really being grumpy. “I know.” he reassured Takki again.
Takki watched how Ryo left the house, he couldn’t help a tiny smile appearing on his lips. Maybe Sakamoto was wrong, maybe they could destroy the wall between them without trying to break through Ryo forcefully like Sakamoto had suggested it. Takki nodded to himself as he decided to go for this way first.
He bit his lips a bit. But no matter what… Something in his mind kept teasing him, telling him that his decision was not right, just the easier one. That he wouldn’t solve anything like that. That things would get worse instead of getting better. That Sakamoto was right with his prediction. That the only chance the both of them had was to learn to talk to each other again through a lot of painful and difficult tries. But Takki shoved these thoughts aside… he didn’t want to think about that…
Maru looked up a bit, hiding his bag behind his back. Then he smiled softly at his mother. “Yes?”
“You are late, dear.” his mother said softly.
“Sorry...” Maru mumbled. “I totally forgot time...”
“Don't worry.” his mother smiled softly. “I'm glad you have friends. It's okay if you meet them. I'm happy.”
“Yeah...” Maru's smile grew pained. “Thanks.” He sighed when he finally closed the room to his door, sitting down on his bed, his nearly totally destroyed bag in his hands.