Title: Painful Days and Stormy Nights Chapter 26: A spark of hope
Pairing: RyoJin, Ohno/Aiba, KimuShingo, Takki/Sakamoto, Sakumiya, Nagase/Koichi and one-sided Miyake/Sakamoto, PiKame or TegoPi? Jun/Uchi
Genre: AU, family, friendship, romance, angst, drama
Disclaimer: The drama reaches its last round... What will happen when the brothers try to find out the truth? Everything turns into the wrong direction when Ryo finally realizes what's lying deep inside his mind...
“Wow.” Koichi mumbled as he watched the little scene between Takki and Ryo, his voice sounding impressed. “And I thought our family life is desperate, right?”
Tsubasa rolled his eyes a bit, smiling apologetically at Takuya. Secretly he gritted his teeth…His brother. Mr. Sensitive.
“Right Tsubasa?” Koichi asked again.
“Shhh…” Tsubasa made, trying to shut his brother up.
“But what amazes me the most is this here.” Koichi put his hand on Takki’s shoulder, padding it. “Is that really the cool and inscrutable Takki?”
“Would you shut up now?” Takki glared at him through teary eyes, an angry expression on his face, while he was still hugging his brother tightly.
“Well…” they could hear Nagase’s friendly and loud voice, though he wasn’t able to hide a relieved tune. “Didn’t Tsubasa-kun say something about pancakes before?”
Takuya smiled thankfully at the change of topic. “Pancakes?”
“Blueberry pancakes.” Nagase smiled.
“Ah.” Tsubasa nodded his head, glad about this input. “Sure. You’ll be our guest, Nagase-kun, right?”
Nagase smiled. “If it’s okay?”
They both looked at Koichi now, who blushed deeply.
“Yeah…why not?” Koichi mumbled, trying to look at anything else but at Nagase.
“Will you eat with us?” Tsubasa smiled at Takuya.
Takuya tilted his head a bit, looking at Takki and Ryo. “Do you two want to eat something here?”
Takki looked up, shrugging a bit helplessly. Then he stroked over Ryo’s hair. “Do you want to eat here?”
Ryo wavered for a moment, then he took a deep breath. “No…thanks” he mumbled. “I really want to go home now.”
Ryo paused for a moment when he got out of the car and saw his home right in front of him. Takki patted his shoulders. “What is it, Ryo? Everything alright?”
Ryo blushed a bit. “It’s just…” he wavered. How should he say that now?
Takuya blinked for a moment before he laughed heartedly as he understood what Ryo’s strange behaviour was about. “Really, Ryo, you totally can’t avoid the upcoming fuss now.”
Takki smiled a bit. “He is right. No chance. Everyone is already waiting like crazy…”
“Everyone?” Ryo asked carefully.
“Yep.” Kimura smiled.
Kimura smirked. “Believe me, it’s definitely a worst case scenario for you.” he teased. “It’s really…everyone.” With that he simply grabbed his younger brother’s arm and pulled him to the door. “Hey everyone!” he called out. “We are back!”
Before Ryo even knew what was going on several hands were already grabbing him to hug him or to pat his head or to mess around with him in a similar embarrassing way. He was just glad when he could recognize his brothers’ and Jin’s arms out of the many hands and arms around him. He also felt safe when he found Sakamoto’s hands stroking through his hair a bit. As for the others… the mess was too huge to recognize anything or anyone.
As the biggest fuss was over Ryo could hear Ohno’s calm voice. “So… someone else feeling hungry?”
“I’ll cook something!” Aiba chirped happily.
“Hey…” Ryo looked at Takki, feeling a bit unsure. They hadn’t talked much during the evening, mainly because of the huge fuss that was going on. No matter how much Ryo had wanted to avoid such a fuss, he had suddenly started to enjoy it. But he felt a bit reluctant that he didn’t have much time for his brothers…and for Jin… He didn’t know when or how it happened, but suddenly he longed for some warmth.
Takki smiled down at his brother, putting an arm around his shoulders and pulling him closer to hug him. “It was a bit tiring, right?”
“Well…” Ryo admitted, not sure what he should answer now.
“Why don’t you go the bed?” Takki suggested.
“But…” Ryo stuttered, not sure how to voice what he wanted.
Takki blinked a bit, his eyes growing wide. “You want to talk?” he asked in utter surprise. He was well aware of the fact that they had to talk…but he thought Ryo wouldn’t be too happy with that.
Ryo shrugged helplessly. “I don’t want to be alone…” he admitted.
Takki smiled sympathetically. “Well…that’s something we can avoid.” He looked around a bit. “Why don’t you take Jin and go upstairs?” he suggested. “Jin is already going insane because he couldn’t talk to you till now…”
“Is he angry?” Ryo asked carefully.
Takki grinned at that. “Why don’t you find it out?”
“And then?” the younger one wanted to know.
Takki smiled. “I will drop by later” he promised, patting Ryo’s shoulder. “…for now have some fun with Jin.” He frowned over his own words. “I don’t mean THAT kind of fun.” he mumbled more to himself than to Ryo, making Nino and Takuya chuckle in amusement.
“Uh, looks painful” Jin said, pointing at Ryo’s red cheek as he sat down next to him. “But you totally deserved it. Takki must have been so worried.” He paused for a moment, glaring a bit. “I was worried too, by the way.” His voice sounded almost angry.
Ryo nodded his head in agreement before he looked at Jin guiltily. “Sorry.” he mumbled.
Jin grinned a bit, pulling at Ryo’s arm. “Don’t give me such a face. It’s okay, I’m glad you are back.” He paused for a moment, raising one of his arms, but before he could do anything, Ryo already robbed a bit away from Jin. His friend chuckled a bit. “What? You think I want to hit you too? Don’t be stupid. Once is enough.”
Ryo sighed in relief, as Jin’s hand just stroked over his face, his fingertips tracing the sign of Takki’s hand. Soft and fondly to not hurt him. Ryo gulped a bit. Jin was so different now, not his cheerful and random self, he was so earnest and gentle. Jin must have caught his look because he suddenly drew back again, remembering what he was doing here. He blushed a bit. “I guess I should get you some ice…” he stuttered.
“Thanks, but my brother is already getting some.” Ryo smiled, though he still wondered about the strange moment from before. But as Jin just complained about why he wasn’t allowed to do something his best friends, turning back into his dorky self, Ryo shoved his thoughts away. Jin just wanted to be nice, he was totally sure about that.
After they had messed around with each other a bit, Jin lied down on Ryo’s bed, next to the younger one. He sighed a bit. “Don’t tell me you are grounded again. Sneaking into your room in the middle of the night is so bothersome. Climbing over the tree. And trying to escape out of the Host Club while Junichi gets upset and Sho pretends he doesn’t see what’s going on and Aiba pretends he doesn’t know anything at all. And all of them try to hide it from Sakamoto-kun because he would never lie to Takki…”
Ryo gulped a bit. “I’m not sure…” he admitted sheepishly. “I don’t think they will let me go away with that… But I didn’t dare to ask…”
Jin grinned at that. “I kinda understand that… I wouldn’t ask either.”
“Sorry.” Ryo sighed. “…for being so bothersome.”
Jin chuckled a bit, biting into Ryo’s shoulder playfully. “Nonsense.” He smiled. “You are never bothersome for me.” He shrugged. “I will definitely climb over the tree to get to talk to you, if they ground you for more than two days.”
“You would be able not to talk to me for two days?” Ryo teased, feeling pretty content that Jin promised him to stay at his side.
Jin grinned. “Probably not.” Then he sighed a bit, getting more earnest again. “Why?” he asked out of a sudden. “Why didn’t you ask me?” His voice sounded a bit upset now. “I would have followed you to wherever you wanted to go…”
Ryo bit his lips at that. “Sorry.” He looked at Jin warmly. “But…I really didn’t plan it… and… I so didn’t want to bring you in trouble…Takki would have killed you.”
“He most probably would have.” Jin admitted, wincing a bit at the thought of having to face an angry Takki. A really angry Takki… since it would be about his brother then. “But still…I would have done that for you.”
“Really?” Ryo blinked. “But why?”
Jin bit his lips at that, blushing slightly. Then he smacked Ryo’s shoulder a bit. “Don’t ask such stupid questions.” He breathed out, voice sounding a bit rough to hide his embarrassment. “You are my best friend after all. My only one.”
“Hey…” Takki knocked at Ryo’s door. He had just convinced Jin to leave so that Ryo could sleep a bit…after an endless discussion of course, because apparently Jin was too afraid that Ryo could leave again. But now they were alone. Takki smiled a bit, sitting down next to his little brother on the bed and handing him over some ice. Then he lied down next to the younger one. They stayed silent for a moment, then Ryo shifted a bit to look directly at Takki. “Aniki?” he paused, gathering all his courage. “How mad are you with me?”
Takki blinked. “I’m not angry at all.” he answered honestly
“Why? I worried you so much…”
Takki smiled weakly. “I’m just glad you are back…Really, I was so worried and concerned, but… now I just feel relieved that you are here again. And alive. It’s more important than anything else.”
“How will you punish me?” Ryo wanted to know, finally deciding that it was better to no know what was going on.
Takki sighed deeply, rubbing over his head a bit. “I…” he smirked teasingly. “Actually I would love to ground you till Christmas. But…”
Ryo blinked in surprise. “But?” He had actually expected Takki to lock him in for months.
“I guess I won’t.” Takki admitted, stroking over Ryo’s face.
“Why?” Ryo looked at the other in surprise. “Why don’t you punish me? Ground me? I would definitely deserve it.”
There was a pained glance in Takki’s eye when he lied down, looking at the ceiling. “Because you are not feeling happy. You always do things out of reasons – that’s how you always did it. What you did was an important sign for me that you are not feeling happy… that you have problems that are more important than grounding you.”
Ryo sighed silently at that. “It’s not that I’m not happy at all, but…”
“But you’re not really happy. Punishing you won’t be any help here. It’s just making things worse.” He turned around a bit. “Hey…when did we start getting apart from each other? You used to love me so much. But now I can’t even grasp you anymore.”
“That’s not true.” Ryo argued, trying to avoid this topic, but Takki shook his head.
“I saw you with Takuya. And with your friends. I still remember the things your teacher told me. It’s as if you are a different person with them… Why me? What did I do? You used to talk to me, but now you are so far away.”
Ryo crawled a bit closer to his brother, not knowing what to say or what to do. He took a deep breath to smell Takki’s shampoo. He was still using the same one like ten years ago. It felt a bit like home.
“Tell me.” Takki begged him. “When was it? When did you start avoiding me?”
“I’m not sure…” Ryo stuttered. “I… didn’t really realize it myself. It’s just that I felt so overstrained sometimes… I…” he shifted around a bit. “It’s not about you.” he finally admitted. “It’s about me.”
“It is?” Takki looked at the younger one piercingly. “Are you sure I didn’t do anything?”
Ryo shook his head. “I’m sure it has nothing to do with you… But it lies so deep in my mind… I…can’t even remember properly.”
Takki wavered for a moment, remembering what Tsubasa had told them when they were searching for the boys. He put one of his hands under Ryo’s chin, turning the younger ones face a bit to force him to look at him. “Do you want to remember? Do you want me to help you to remember everything?”
Ryo wavered for a moment, wondering what he should say now. Fighting to find out the truth sounded so bothersome… But then the pictures he saw…the dark feelings that sometimes overwhelmed him. He bit his lips. Wasn’t that worse than not knowing the truth? If he found out what was going on inside him, he would be able to get over it.
Takki sighed a bit. “Listen Ryo… we have to do something. We can’t go on like that… Are you content with our relationship?”
“No.” Ryo shook his head. “I hate how things are between us.”
“Well…” Takki grinned weakly. “At least we think the same about that…” he sighed. “But… you know we have to talk, right? Just that it won’t work if you don’t want to…”
Ryo sighed a bit. “You said you won’t punish me…”
Takki chuckled. “Talking is the same for you as a punishment?”
Ryo blushed a bit. “Difficult talks…yes…” he smiled a bit. “Don’t you want to ground me instead?”
“No.” Takki grinned, shaking his head at his brother’s suggestion. “Ryo …” he paused for a moment. “Don’t be afraid, okay? There is nothing that can happen to you… I’m here after all, right?”
“Yes…” Ryo mumbled. “You are here…” he bit his lips a bit as he felt the fear spreading through his body again. What if Takki would also disappear suddenly? Or leave him alone? Or kill himself? He couldn’t live with that… Takki was his only steady constant in his life.
Takki frowned a bit when he saw the scared expression on Ryo’s face. “Ryo?”
Ryo took a deep breath, looking at his brother insistently. He feared to find out the truth, but what he feared even more was to loose what he had right now. Takki, his half-brothers, Jin.... “Okay.” He finally said, clenching his fists. “I want to fight it. I want to find out the truth.”
A/N: So...Takki and Ryo slowly get closer again ^^
And Jin... oh Jin XD
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