Mamma Mia by ABBA playing on the radio:
I’ve been cheated by you since I don’t know when
So I made up my mind, it must come to an end
Look at me now, will I ever learn?
I don’t know how but I suddenly lose control
There’s a fire within my soul
Just one look and I can hear a bell ring
One more look and I forget everything, w-o-o-o-oh
Ryū frowned as he turned the radio off while he was driving back to Ohara to get some of his clothes. “Of all the songs, why did it have to be this one?” He muttered to himself. It just made him remember what had happened that night. The scene wherein Shirō was standing in front of Kichirō, with their faces close to each other’s, kept on flashing back in his mind. He shook this thought off of his head then firmly grasped on the steering wheel.
It was a little after two o’clock at the moment. He did not have any classes until five in the afternoon, so he might as well as get some of his clothes. He did not want to borrow clothes from his idiotic best friend. Who knows if what germs Ken had on his body?
As soon as he reached the front porch of Ken’s vacation house, that was now his and Kichirō’s so-called ‘home,’ he saw Kichirō’s father petting Kuro on the front lawn. Kuro looked happy with his tail gently moving and his eyes closed as he purred with every stroke Akihiko made on his back. Suddenly, the little kitten opened his eyes when he sensed the arrival of his master. He dashed off toward Ryū, making Akihiko look back on who just arrived. Seeing that it was Ryū, Akihiko pleasantly smiled at him which in turn made the other smile back.
Akihiko stood up while Ryū carried Kuro in his embrace and walked over toward his father-in-law. They sat together, side by side, on the lawn. “Son, it’s been 4 days since you’ve left. How much longer will you keep dragging on with this drama?” Akihiko asked.
Kuro crawled up to Ryū’s left shoulder.「I miss you, daddy. Mommy also missed you.」It was obvious that Kuro also missed Ryū so the boy hugged the kitten as he rubbed Kuro’s back.
Ryū looked at Akihiko, and with a sad look on his face, he replied: “I’m sorry, Otōsan. I can’t return unless your son admits that he was wrong.”
“Heh, my son’s so stubborn. He’s just like my wife… I wonder why of all the traits my son could inherit from her, why did it have to be her stubbornness?” Akihiko chuckled.
Ryū did not respond and just continued to pet Kuro.
Akihiko patted Ryū’s back and said: “You know for a fact that he really didn’t kiss Morioka-kun, right? I know my son. He may be stupid at times, but he’s no liar.”
“I know, Otōsan. I was just hurt. He even defended that guy. Do you think that’s reasonable?”
Akihiko heaved a deep sigh. “Yoseyo , just kiss and make up already. Be a man, okay?”
( “For heaven’s sake” or “oh stop.”)
Ryū looked at Akihiko and with an indifferent tone, he said: “But, we’re gay.”
“Nice try. Stop with the dry jokes and just do what’s the right thing to do. Okay, I’ll go ahead. Don’t want to keep the missus waiting.” Akihiko stood up, dusted his pants, and headed home, leaving Ryū and Kuro behind.
Ryū looked up at the bright February afternoon sky. The sun that was hiding behind those fluffy white clouds earlier was now slowly boasting its radiance, as the clouds drifted apart. Ryū squinted his eyes when the sun’s warm rays shone on his face. He heaved a deep sigh, as he thought of the possibilities… Would they break up? Would Kichirō choose Shirō over him? There were a lot of questions that bothered Ryū. At long last, he stood up and released Kuro to the ground. When he was about to enter the house to get some of his clothes, he noticed that Kuro dashed off to another place. Ryū followed the kitten with his gaze and saw that Kuro was prancing around a familiar figure — it was Kichirō.
Ryū looked at Kichirō and the other looked back. There was an obvious longing on each other’s face, yet neither of them was willing to lay down their pride and approach the other. In the end, Ryū dodged Kichirō’s gaze and walked into the house.
Kichirō was glad to see that Ryū went home, but his heart immediately sank when the other gave him the cold shoulder. He thought that Ryū had forgiven him, even though he knew that he did nothing wrong. It was all just false hope since Ryū immediately left the house, after he was able to get his clothes. Kichirō could feel his chest tighten, but what else could he do? He could not put all of the blame on Ryū since this all started because of him. He was the one who ran away with Shirō. He was the one who talked to Shirō, as if Ryū was not around — but what was the point in all of this useless sulking? Kichirō was well aware that he no longer had any feelings for Shirō and that it was Ryū whom he adored now… or was he wrong about his understanding of his own feelings? Could it be that he really still felt something for Shirō? That, he could not tell. He was confused about his own feelings.
While Kichirō was sitting on the sofa, he suddenly had a bright idea. He looked up to ceiling and started to mutter: “Since I don’t have classes later, should I go talk to Ken? Maybe he can give me advise because he’s Ryū’s closest friend.” After saying that, he looked at Kuro and picked the kitten up. He looked into Kuro’s eyes and asked, “What do you think, Kuro-chan?”
Kuro tilted his head and blinked his big green eyes as he looked at Kichirō.「Mommy should chase after Daddy!」
“You understand where I’m coming from, right? I’ll go talk to Ken and get this sorted out, ne Kuro-chan?” Kichirō smiled sweetly and hugged Kuro.
It was a quarter before six. Kichirō sat by the balcony as he waited for Ken and Ryū’s class to finish. He sent a text message to Ken earlier about his intention to meet up. The other agreed because he was also concerned about what was going on between the two. Ever since Kichirō told him and Naoki about what happened in Osaka, a few days ago, Ken felt that this was a serious matter that Kichirō and Ryū needed to sort out as soon as possible.
Finally, the bell rang and their class has finally ended. Kichirō sneaked a peek at their classroom’s door. He could see the students, swarming as they went out of the room. The last ones to leave were Ryū, Ken and Seijirō .
( Please refer to chapter 56 if you can’t remember this senpai. Hehe.)
“Bro, you can go ahead with Nakashima. I just need to meet with my wife, heh,” Ken smirked.
Seijirō laughed and said, “Yeah, yeah… Go to your wife. You haven’t introduced her to me yet. Is she pretty? Tell me she is. I know you well, Hirano-kun, ha ha.”
Ryū gave Ken a side-long glance and flashed a smile of ridicule. Ken broke into cold sweats and punched Ryū’s arm, out of embarrassment. “Cut it out, man. Don’t give me that look.”
Ryū chuckled, “What did I do?”
Seijirō looked puzzled, so he asked: “Did I miss something? Oh~ don’t tell me she’s a freak. Oho, the university’s Casanova has a weird taste, tsk.”
“Ie, it’s not like that. It’s just… ha ha, I’ll introduce you to that person soon. I gotta go, guys.” Ken ran off. The two watched as his figure disappear into the wake of the crowd.
At the cafe near their university, Ken and Kichirō sat opposite to each other. Kichirō was drinking a strawberry shake while Ken was drinking a cup of hot chocolate. Ken took a sip of his beverage while Kichirō happily drank his with a straw.
“So, what do you want to know, Kichi?” Ken asked. “Are you sure about what you’re drinking right now? It’s a bit cold tonight. Ryū will kill me if he finds out I’ve let you drink something cold on this winter night.”
Kichirō waved his hand and negated: “No, don’t worry. I’m fine… By the way, what does Ryū like? I mean, what’s his favorite food? Anything that he enjoys doing? Tell me all about him. Please.”
“Eh? You two are dating, but you don’t know a thing about that guy? Heh. To be honest with you, I don’t know if he’s got a favorite drink or food. Ever since we were kids, he never paid too much attention on things like food or toys… There’s one thing that I do know… He’s fond of his mom. They were really close when she was still alive. Ryū was like his mom’s shadow. They were literally inseparable. Ryū became cold and aloof when his mom passed away. He was really affected by his mom’s death. Too bad, his mom was really nice. She even treated me like her own son. It was unforeseen. He didn’t speak for more than a year. We thought he wouldn’t talk again. His dad even brought him to different doctors just to get him treated, but they all failed…”
Kichirō was speechless. He never knew these things about Ryū. When he would try to ask Ryū about his family, the other would just avoid the topic and talk about something else. He did not know that Ryū also had a sad past. “So, what made him talk again?”
“Beats me. That’s for you to find out. I can’t tell you everything. It’s something that must find out on your own. Hey Kichi…”
“Why don’t you just kiss and make up? Like, why don’t you just come clean. Be honest about your feelings. Surely you won’t choose that Shirō guy?”
Kichirō touched his chin while he was deep in his thoughts. “Hmm… Good point. I’ll do that, but I need to treat him well first. Let’s see how he will respond to me chasing after him.”
Ken sighed and shook his head. “Suit yourself. Don’t say I didn’t warn you. You might end up getting treated like one of those fan girls that has been chasing Ryū.”
Ken looked Kichirō in the eyes, then said: “He hates being chased after. That’s one thing he hates the most. I may not know what he likes the most, but I’m sure I know what he detests, he he.”
“Oh… I’ll see what I can do…”
To be continued…