|zukafuji post-a-day part troix
||[Dec. 6th, 2006|03:34 pm]
title: Dispelling the Darkness
A Companion piece to "Dead Ends in the Darkness"
Tezuka, for the sixth time that day, finds himself doodling eyes on his legal pad.
In blue ink.
Fuji spends his first week in Eiji's house. The noisy, chaotic house where there are children, dogs, cats, uncles and random houseguests underfoot, where Eiji's mother offers him tea every five minutes, because the way Eiji explains it, Tezuka beat Fuji up and left him for dead.
He smiles, and he says, no thank you, no to tea, and to tennis and to Tachibana, who Eiji practically dragged over one day "just to say hi".
No one comes to say hi bearing wasabi sushi.
Fuji thinks, randomly, of alliterations and how he wouldn't say no if it were Tezuka.
"Tell me where he is," Tezuka growls into his phone as he alights from the train. At the other end of the line, Oishi looks at Eiji's murderous face and he tells Tezuka, "I don't know."
Which is sort of true.
Last week he was at Eiji's house.
And the week before that, in Yuuta and Mizuki's apartment, until Fuji took it into his mind that setting Mizuki's closet on fire was a very good thing to do, under circumstances.
("It was self-defense," Fuji reasoned idly, as Oishi hustled him out of there, avoiding Mizuki's grief-stricken face and Yuuta's oddly grateful one.)
Tezuka growls his good-bye and hangs up.
He stares at his phone and starts to dial.
Atobe picks up after three rings.
"I could, maybe, find him for you," Atobe leans back in his chair and takes his peacock feather quill pen to make a small notation in his planner. "If you agree that you won't go near him."
Tezuka doesn't reply, waiting for Atobe to realize the stupidity of that statement.
"I know what you're thinking. It's not stupid. You see, Fuji is... delicate, if I am to trust his ridiculous friend's ramblings of why he can't have dinner with me. He compared Fuji to this lovely doll everyone wants and someone finally gets, and then that someone goes and drops him off the top floor of a condominium."
"Atobe," Tezuka finally exhales, keeping his eyes glued straight ahead. "Are you drunk?"
After the third week, wherein Fuji finally agrees to a game with Jirou, if only to get out of Echizen's cramped Tokyo headquarters, crawling with fans, random agents, salespeople and bitter rivals, Fuji also confesses, after the fourth game, that he misses Tezuka.
There are no gradients in Fuji's affections, only absolutes.
Jirou bites his lip and then serves.
On the train home, Fuji says it, softer this time, more to himself than to Jirou.
He whispers it as the wind whips past his face when he opens Echizen's bathroom window to look at Tokyo's lights at night.
And this is what he hears in the wind as it rushes into his hair and his ears and his head, breathing him alive again.
It's a long commute, but Tezuka thinks it's worth it if it means going home to sheets that still smell, even just a little, of Fuji.
Coming home to plates that Fuji picked out and the toothpaste that Fuji used. Coming home to traces of Fuji seems better than coming home to no Fuji at all.
It is, Tezuka thinks grimly as he climbs up the three flights of stairs to the apartment, the right thing to do, which is probably why it hurts so much.
He finds Fuji sitting on the floor outside the door.
"Eiji had the locks changed," Fuji says, blankly, like he can't believe how far his friends will go to protect him.
"Yes," Tezuka says, thinking of how Fuji tastes, and wondering if he still tastes the same.
"Welcome home," Fuji finally says, smiling up at him, using his own hands to propel himself upwards so he can meet Tezuka's eyes better.
Tezuka says nothing, but he takes Fuji's hand as he opens the door, and he turns the overhead bulb on, flooding their world with light.