Get Your Act Together
Thomas tastes the question before Fuuya says it. In truth, it’s been on Thomas’s mind lately - are they friends? They’re co-workers, sure, and maybe Thomas wonders if he’d like to date him but are they actually anything beyond two sides of the same broken mirror? It’s a strange and interesting thing that they are…
So it’s with great surprise to himself that Thomas leans over and kisses Fuuya, lips lingering for a moment while he leans over the table and opens his eyes to study the face in front of him.
Fuuya’s just as fractured as he is, and he’s younger…. so much younger, he doesn’t deserve this. He doesn’t deserve all the black and blue agony and baggage and Thomas drags with him as he trails from person to person looking for stability.
He’ll leave his bags at Fuuya’s door if he’ll take them.
“I think so,” he murmurs, their lips barely brushing as he speaks. He pulls back to sit back down, sipping his drink and then licking his dry lips. “We could be more, if you swung that way,” he adds light-heartedly, chuckling as he winks and reaches for his meal. “What do you think?”
If Fuuya’s voice weren’t caught in his throat, he’d probably scream. He’s mortified not because IV kissed him again but because this time Fuuya was actually sure that-
Oh god he-
He liked it.
All he had asked was if they were friends, something so innocent that he had asked when he was a child, and IV kissed him, let a shiver go through his and so much blood go to his head that for a moment he thought he might faint. Was… Did IV like him that way?
Of all people for someone like IV to be interested in, why Fuuya? Why someone who was hurt so easily, who wore his false identity like armor?
Was IV mocking him?
For everything Fuuya was thinking, staring at IV as though there was nothing behind his own eyes, he had to blurt out
“Are you asking me out?”
Bruce: Hi Fuuya! How's it going? I was playing around there. Sorry that I confused you. That was some reference to something. (pats his soft head gently) Anyways, thank you for rising nicely Fuuya, you're quite intelligent.
Fuuya huffs, shaking his head to unruffle his hair.
“I see, I see- My apologizies for not understanding!”
Get Your Act Together
Thomas shuts his eyes for a moment and drinks in the memories of the WDC. Mostly he recalls the heat and the flames - Tron’s bite and Ryoga’s fury. He remembers darkness and slipping away into nothingness until he was yanked awake. It was a disappointing, really.
Sometimes he thought it would’ve been kinder if Tron had just killed him then and there rather than holding his soul hostage.
So nothing really made Fuuya tick. There was no soul in the way he spoke - it was like reading lines or calling back to the director.
Where was the joy? The life?
Desperation and frustration were a dangerous concoction that Thomas was far too familiar with. Fuuya was barely any more stable than himself! He wonders if the sadness leaks into his every movement the way it does with Fuuya. At the heart of it all it’s a depressing mess of pills, late nights, and shame; cold dishes of self-served loathing eaten alone in dusty corners where there was nothing left to call it home.
Somewhere they’d lost themselves. It’s a terrifying and overarching thought that Thomas wonders if they could find themselves together.
The together sort of together.
He doesn’t date, though, and he wouldn’t subject Fuuya to what double-sided tongue he had tucked between his lips. Already he’d wounded the boy with words and that was when he was being (mostly) unintentionally mean.
Don’t catch me on an off day, Kid.
“You’re better off never having dueled me,” he replies. “You’d probably have been in the hospital if I had. But I had no interest in you. Nor did my… superiors.”
To put it lightly.
The thought of going back to the hospital- after a duel, no less- fill Fuuya with dread. He hated hospitals. He hated the rush to get him there, he hated the questions he was bombarded with when he could barely remember his own name.
And IV would have ended up putting him there again.
“It couldn’t be any worse than what I’d put myself there for-“
Fuuya cuts himself short. Did he just… confess that? That, of all things, to someone like IV? Maybe with that scar IV understood. But IV was someone so painfully opposite Fuuya. He couldn’t…. He couldn’t possibly understand….
There’s something in IV’s eye though. The way he speaks, carries himself. He knows what it’s like to be there, and Fuuya knows this because he saw that look in himself the week after he had come home from the ER, drained, a wisp of a person.
Maybe that understanding is what Fuuya had been looking for for so long. Reaching out into something too bright and hoping a hand would take his to guide him.
Was IV the one who would do that?
“I don’t think I’d be of much interest either way. I’m no duelist, you’d have nothing to gain. No social standing… like crushing an ant…”
Fuuya sighs, sipping his drink and licking his lips. He had only ever been this honest with Yuma, and even then, he was so desperate, scrambling to get a hold on some semblance of normality that he didn’t bother to tell him why he was such a wreck.
“Are we friends?”
He doesn’t mean to voice it, but the question hangs in the air for IV to take or leave,
The Story of the Hero and the Boy
“Hmm….” he hummed contently, observing the empty playground absently a- “Waaahhh-” he made a suprised noise as he was suddenly gently pushed foward, becoming light-hearted laughter. “Ah, thank you!”
“The point is…” He carefully held his index finger up without losing balance. “The point is to believe in yourself and that you have no limits! It’s what my dad taught me! It is the spirit to never give up and always challenge yourself everyday at different place in a different time! So that you can keep moving on!” Yuma flashed a bright smile, holding onto the rope again. Began swinging by himself as a spark suddenly caught him. His eyebrows furrowed slightly in a challenging expression. “Limits are just there to be surpassed!”
He swung highter and higher and higher and-
And tumbled onto the sand, limbs spread in all four direction.
Yuma blinked, touching his forehead with his fingers, cringed a bit before shaking himself. “It doesn’t matter if you fall or not! The point is to try again and again!” Yuma stopped for a moment to look up into Fuuya’s face. “A father..?” He thought about it. Wait! Did Fuuya…? Yuma looked down, not knowing what to say…Suddenly sat up! “I know! I know! A dad puts a band aid on your knee when you fall down and hurt yourself! He puts you on his shoulders and carries you home making train noises! But…hmmm, he doesn’t do that forever! He can’t!” Yuma laughed. “Next time he teaches you how to put on a band aid yourself! To patch yourself up together and stand up by your own strength!” Another smile. Charming imperfection. “Yes, dads are awesome!”
[ooc: No need to match length. I just needed it to explain right ;).]
Fuuya felt a pang of longing, smiling softly, if not forced. Yes, it might have been nice to have a dad. Someone who could have encouraged Fuuya to do more that try to please his mother, who could have let him go to school or do things he had seen dads and their sons do on TV.
Fuuya had almost always had to do things himself, but even so had always felt so dependent on others. How could he not? He had spent the majority of his life hoping to be called by his real name. He needed to work harder, always harder, so that he’d finally be accepted as himself.
“It sounds nice,” Fuuya mumbled. “I wish I had a father, you know? Just someone… someone to teach me how to do things right.”
He shook his head- This was no time for thoughts like that! If Fuuya was going to spend some time with Yuma, he would absolutely make the most of it!
He sat in the swing next to the one Yuma had fallen out of and grinned.
“C’mon! This is fun!”
Bruce: I like to call Fuuya to the stand. Fuuya, would you please rise?
Fuuya frowned, confused. Nonetheless, he stood.
The Story of the Hero and the Boy
“There are lots of things around the corner if you look!” Yuma exclaimed. He looked at Fuuya with a wide smile.
Yuma didn’t like the thought of growing up and having people say he can’t do this or that or or anything! He was just…curious. He wanted to reach out for the unknown! To see and taste and experience and just be around everyone! Yuma wanted to weave bonds! He wanted to fight and clash their souls and fight and protect and one day stand on a hill together and look back and smile and running down to new adventures…
“You know, I always wished I could remain here forever! When Mom and Dad and Akari-neechan took me here back then…” Yuma let himself fall onto one of the swings. He rooked back and forth, slight movements on the sand. “But it’s in changing and surpassing our own limits over and over that we truly become ourselves!”
Fuuya looked at Yuma with a quizzical expression, but smiled nonetheless. He walked up, giving Yuma a light push on the swing- That’s what people did, right? What friends did?
“Sometimes I think you don’t have any limits. You’re just so… you. What was it that you used to say? Kat… ‘Kattobingu’?”
Fuuya beamed, reminded of those few instances with Yuma that ultimately changed his life for the better. Without Yuma to pull him out of that dark rut, Fuuya didn’t know what would have happened.
“Yuma, I… This may seem like a really silly question, but what is it like? Having a father?”
It was something Fuuya had wondered countless times. However, he never bothered asking his mother- He knew why he didn’t have a father, and he never once questioned it.
Well, I think you look cool as yourself and a hero(star). Plus you have nice white hair and fun as well as being a good duelist and a joyable one and super! Absolutely and gracefully SUPER!
“Y-You really think that?”
Fuuya smiled, not bothering to mention his hair was actually blue.
Of course! I'm a fan and you're absolutely right! I have great interest in certain people and you're one of them.
“Well, I’m flattered! So, may I ask what’s so interesting about me?”
(star decends, Bruce appears) Hiya Fuuya. I'm Bruce. It's wonderful to meet you. I heard and seen so much about you.
“Ah! Br-‘Bruce’? I’m sorry, that name’s a bit difficult for me to say! And you say you’ve heard and- seen?- so much about me? Are you a fan, too?”
“A factory island? …” So maybe the course of history had been altered. “Then the future is no longer in despair.” He smiled a bit. “I never got your name.” He still thought the boy reminded him of Rua, well, a less confident Rua, but nonetheless. “Also, how can I get out of this place? I’m not sure if in this time period if people are used to artificial intelligence.” He shrugged. “It would be appreciated if you could lead me out of here.” He pondered why people would have left Neo-Domino, but stayed silent about that part. His priority now was to find a way out of the studio and back to Ark Cradle.
“My name is Fuuya Okudaira! And, uhm, as for getting out of here, I can help. As long as you’re with me, things will be okay.”
Fuuya reached out his hand for the man to take, the stark difference making Fuuya feel immensely small.
“And as for artificial intelligence, well, there are these robots, you see, that go around the city and clean. They have AI, but the scientist are a little bit worried about making anything more complex, I hear. The most intricate ones belong to Kaito, but that’s because he needs them.”