Happy Holidays, everyone! I know things are sort of quiet in this community, but I thought I'd share something that's been sititng on my computer for a while. I always enjoy when there's new stuff here.
I've been a long-time Fushigi Yuugi lover and have been writing fanfiction, mostly in the Supernatural fandom, for about a year now. It's a piece of Grade-A silliness. I hope you enjoy it!
Title: Just Like That
Rating: PG-13, for cursing and small, modest amounts of naughty
Word Count: 4,400ish
Summary: Chichiri and Tasuki have always been close, but Tasuki realizes just how close he'd like them to be...
Disclaimer: Give the glory to Yuu.
Tasuki was fucking tired. He desperately needed to sit. Parts of him he didn’t even know existed were now very alive with aching. But Chichiri was still just sitting there, and it seemed to Tasuki that the monk had been crying for days.
Hotohori was dead, now. It’s down to us…a masked weirdo and a fanged idiot. And, I hope to Suzako, Tama’s out there in Miaka’s world, safe and sound. Asshole.
It was hours ago that Chichiri and Tasuki had wandered silently and stiffly away from Hotohori’s still body, already being attended to by his wailing servants. They walked away from it towards the palace without thought or words or feeling. That is, until Chichiri finally stopped moving, somewhere in the imperial gardens. They were only a few feet from relief and the comfort of warm beds and, Tasuki hoped, warm sake. When Tasuki turned to see why his friend had stopped, Chichiri’s mask was crumpled in his hand and he was shaking all over. But with controlled motions he went down on his knees and wept. They started as soft, injured sniffs at first, then viciously escalated into screams of horror and agonized sobs that strangled the crying man.
Tasuki, who had not moved since Chichiri went down, didn’t know how much more he could put up with. Not because it was uncomfortable, although it was really fucking uncomfortable, or because he was exhausted and wanted bed more badly than ever before, although that was very true too. He just wanted it to stop. Because it was fucking breaking his heart.
Come on, you unbelievable jackass! Tasuki snarled at himself. Do something! Do anything! Help him! Hug him! Say something! Fer the love of Suzako, at least move, before ya turn into a freakin’ statue! He had nearly almost maybe just probably decided to make a move towards Chichiri when the monk suddenly swung sad eyes up at him, catching Tasuki totally off guard and knocking the wind right out of him.
And Tasuki’s heart was in a million little pieces.
“You don’t have to stay here with me.”
And now it was in a hundred million pieces.
Tears still streaked from Chichiri’s good eye, but the sobbing had sudsided, thankfully. Tasuki was shocked by Chichiri’s small smile that looked like something bordering on…gratitude? Tasuki kicked himself for not doing anything that had earned a smile like that. He wished he’d done something.
He wished he could breath.
He could feel bad things happening to him. His stomach was falling into his boots, his head was throbbing and he was feeling slightly dizzy and fuzzy in the brain. The name Chichiri kept fluttering around in his head and hovering just inside his lips. Damn it. Tasuki wanted to blame it on being dog-tired from a day of battle and bloodshed. He really, really wanted to.
But something had just clicked. Shit, Tasuki thought, I get it. I just now understand all those sappy pain-in-the-ass speeches Tama likes to pour out whenever Miaka’s in trouble…which is all the god damn time. I suddenly get having something that special that you don’t want anything to touch it…Chichiri…oh, fuck.
Tasuki felt the situation to be entirely unfair. He was off the battlefield…and here was the hardest blow yet. He stood, debating whether to run to Chichiri or far, far away from him, when, without warning, the monk was on his feet and passing Tasuki by.
“Thank you, Tasuki,” Chichiri said, putting a hand on the other’s shoulder. The contact forced Tasuki to bite his tongue to keep from letting out a little yelp of surprise. To his dismay, Chichiri was already smoothing the mask back on. “You’re a good friend, no da.”
As soon as Chichiri was out of ear shot, Tasuki let it all out. “YOW! My fuckin’ tongue!”
He continued his out loud thinking as he stomped miserably towards the palace. “As if Mr. Bad Boy Nakago wasn’t enough for me to worry about…now I’ve…I’ve…fallen…oh, fer cryin’ out loud, I can’t even say it! Where the hell do they keep the booze around here?!”
Tasuki slowly rose to the surface of consciousness just as the night sky was beginning to blush. His ass was sore. What the…? Why was he outside? Outside…of Chichiri’s bedroom, he realized with horror. Oh, Suzako. No more sake before bedtime.
The last thing he remembered was trying to wash Chichiri’s crying out of his head…with alcohol. He had wandered over to the monk’s room, telling himself he was just strolling over to make sure the crying had stopped for good, although he knew it was.
Tasuki somehow understood that Chichiri’s frightening outburst was the best thing that could happen. Now he’d gotten it all out of his system. He’d be strong and focused, and ready for the fight that was never very far away…
Tasuki gingerly pushed himself off the ground, a hand to his aching back. I’ve got the cushiest bed in all of Konan, and I go and pass out on a hardwood floor. Go figure.
It’s because of him, a voice in the back of his mind whispered through the throbbing hangover.
“Shut up,” Tasuki muttered. With one hand on the wall to steady himself, he made his way to his room and his very big and empty bed.
It wasn’t the first time he’d fallen asleep in that very spot, truth be told. Anytime the Seven had been through a particularly hellish day, he’d find himself pointed in the direction of Chichiri’s room. He’d never knocked or gone inside, but just being there seemed to calm him down. Like some of the monk’s serenity was seeping through the walls and Tasuki could soak it up.
Now, staring up at the ceiling of his own room, after many hours of deep, drugged sleep, Tasuki could feel none of that serenity. It wasn’t just his peace that made it impossible for Tasuki to not think about Chichiri.
He’s got a great body, Tasuki thought, with a dopey fanged grin. He hated to admit it. Jeez, what would poor Chichiri think if he heard me sayin’ this stuff?
He always had seemed so naïve, so innocent…maybe that was part of it. Something so pure…
I am a god damn bandit, Tasuki told himself. I take what I want. No questions…even if what I want is…is…god damn it. He shook his head, which, he realized momentarily, was a bad idea. I’m a fucking Suzako Celestial Warrior! Why can’t I quit actin’ like some sissy school girl?! What would Nuriko do?
Tasuki tried to calmly evaluate the situation, while picking apart the threads of his blanket. It seemed he had feelings for Chichiri. Big feelings. Scary feelings. Try as he might, there was something there he couldn’t ignore. He’d always felt a lil tugged towards the other warrior, but last night, it all hit him square in the face. So, he reasoned, this must make me…gay.
He let out a small groan. Did it mean he had to dress up in ladies’ clothes? Was there some local guild he’d have to register with? Would there be fees? Was love always this much of a pain in the ass (no pun intended)? And if he did have to dress like a woman, could he ever be as frighteningly good at it as Nuriko?
He was just trying to figure out what colors would look good with his fiery hair (red, he decided, was out of the question), when Chichiri’s voice slapped him out of his introspection.
“Tasuki-kun? I’ve brought you some breakfast, no da.”
“Oh! Hi Chichiri! Yah! Breakfast, I’m starved. Bring it on in!” Tasuki babbled, striving for cheerful.
The ever smiling Chichiri entered and walked the tray over to Tasuki, who fought a wave of panicked giddiness when the monk took a seat on the edge of the bed. Hold it together, you crazy fruit, Tasuki told himself.
“Hey, this isn’t breakfast,” Tasuki said, looking at the tray.
“For the rest of the world, it is lunch time, no da. If you want real breakfast, you’ll have to get out of bed before noon, no da,” Chichiri explained with that grin.
“Yah, yah,” Tasuki growled. “It was a late night.” Tasuki turned his attention to the tray and ate ravenously, stuffing his mouth so it couldn’t do anything too stupid.
“Next time you camp out, you should bring a blanket, no da,” Chichiri said obliviously.
Tasuki choked. As he hacked out bits of food, he searched his mind for something to say once his airways were cleared. He was drawing a giant blank.
“Chichiri, man, I—“
“It’s okay, no da. You were worried about me. I just apologize, for scaring you like that last night.”
“I wasn’t scared.”
“I saw your face.” Chichiri got a lil quieter. “I terrified you.”
Tasuki would have said that he knew what Chichiri thought of his face, how much he hated it. He would have said that in fact, Chichiri was beautiful, scar and all. He would have said all the mushy crap that people say when they’re intoxicated by another person. Except that Chichiri had started to lean towards him, and that made Tasuki unable to breath, again.
Chichiri calmly rested his forehead against Tasuki’s forehead, and for a moment, Tasuki worried that the monk might be able to hear all the awful but exciting thoughts racing in the bandit’s mind.
“We’ve got to look out for each other. I’m glad you’re still here,” Chichiri sighed.
“I’m not goin’ anywhere!” Tasuki blurted out. Stupid stupid stupid.
“Yah, I’m not too worried about you leaving,” Chichiri said, standing up abruptly. “You’ve have to get out of bed to do that, no da. Later, Tasuki.”
Tasuki meant to toss out a casual, “Later!”, but all he could manage was a weak wave at the monk’s back. Tasuki stared at his hands for a while, his face red, until he let out a growl and punched the wall next to him.
Why does he do that to me? How does he do that to me? This isn’t how it’s supposed to go. Either I’m in love with Chichiri or I’m crazy! Or both…That’s it, he decided. I’ve got to figure this out.
It was the bad side of the village. Very close to the good side of the village, because there wasn’t that much village. Tasuki had imbibed what he thought was a sufficient amount of booze for the task at hand. But, cautiously, not so much that he wouldn’t be able to carry out his particular mission.
He’d fucked women before. He supposed it was fun, but he couldn’t really see what all the fuss was about. Some of the bandits had acting as though a piece of tail was actually worth 200 hundred reo. Hence, Tasuki had never paid for sex. He preferred alcohol, and lots of it. He found that where one flowed freely, you could pretty easily pick up the other. He was more than irritated that tonight would break his record.
Chichiri was the only person that made him feel this way. He had to be certain that it was love and not…an allergic reaction or something. Some kind of trauma from Hotohori’s death. Or maybe he was possessed by Nuriko’s ghost. He just had to be sure this was what he thought it was.
This is pathetic, Tasuki thought, sitting on the bed at the by-the-hour inn above the tavern. He held his heavy head in one hand, watching the prostitute out of the corner of his eye. What would his Highness think of this…or Miaka…or, Suzako forbid, Chichiri?
The prostitute took time letting her kimono slid down her silky body, allowing her black satiny hair to swing elegantly down her back. Her breasts were pert and her ass was firm and her eyes were a familiar shade of mahogany. She was beautiful. She was also really pissed off that Tasuki hadn’t seemed to pay a bit of attention during her performance. If he didn’t appreciate a true artist, she decided, she’d skip right to the main show.
She approached the silent man and knelt before him, cozying up between his legs. He looked startled, and panicked. Jeez, she thought, hasn’t he ever done this before?
She reached a hand up to tug at his pants.
“Whoa! Hey! Can we just…hang on, will you?”
She let out an impatient sigh, but took her hands back and waited. Tasuki appeared to be deep in thought.
Experimentally, Tasuki reached down and grabbed a breast. Not awful, he thought. Entertaining. Squishy. I could do this.
The prostitute was feeling pretty irritated. There were no sleazy intentions in Tasuki’s grin. What the hell was wrong with him? And he was gonna have to stop honking her soon, or she would have to deck him.
Eager to get the whole thing over with, she reminded herself to tell him about her no-refund policy, and aimed her lips at Tasuki.
Tasuki panicked at the sight of the rapidly approaching face, all a-pucker, and lost all interest in the boob. Frantically, and without thought, he suddenly intercepted her by the forehead, and without thinking, pushed her backwards—not enough to hurt her, but just enough to enrage her beyond reason.
As Tasuki sprinted through the streets of the small village, screaming, violent prostitute very close behind, he cursed silently. Damn it. I guess that settles it. I’m only interested in one thing.
Despite the threat of death by hooker, Tasuki grinned. Knowing what you want is the first step to getting it.
When Tasuki peered around the corner of the hall leading to Chichiri’s room, he was surprised to see the monk already seated at Tasuki’s occasional post outside his door.
His first instinct was to flee. His second instinct was to confess everything. He was sure about his feelings, but he wasn’t quite ready to completely test his newfound conviction. He decided on nonchalantly strolling past and stopping for a quick, civil chat. Very coincidental, very innocent. He shoved his hands in his pockets and commenced a casual whistle, and aimed himself at the love of his life.
“Well, hey there Chichiri! Fancy meetin’ you here!”
Chichiri blinked. “It’s my room, no da.”
“Well, exactly. Why aren’t you…in it?” Tasuki recovered. Man, this guy is poison to my pride.
“I thought you might want company, no da,” Chichiri smiled.
Flustered, Tasuki sputtered out, “Hey…last night was just a one-time thing! Just to make sure you were okay.”
Chichiri raised his eyebrows. “Tasuki. You know I can sense your presence, no da.”
Suzako damn it! Why hadn’t he remembered that? Of course Chichiri knew, all those times, only a few feet away from where Tasuki sat and stared at stars and eventually drifted to dreams. Well, damn, now that he’d gone and denied it, Chichiri must have realized something weird was going on. But if he did, his face didn’t show it. In fact, he patted the ground next to him.
“Why don’t you sit with me?”
Tasuki’s brain never even got a chance to command his body to sit—it just did.
“So, how was it?” Chichiri asked after a few peaceful moments (peaceful, except for every muscle in Tasuki’s body being clenched).
“How was what?” Tasuki asked, refusing the urge to put his head on Chichiri’s shoulder.
“Well, I thought you went to town looking for your own company, no da.” Chichiri’s voice held no judgement, no malice, but it was just a shade softer than usual. Tasuki would have wondered about it, if he could force his brain to resume normal functions, which was proving impossible. Fuck it. This is too much emotional strain for me. I’m going back to the god damn mountains to steal shit and fuck women. He must think I’m such a pervert, the sweet naïve guy. He hates me now. I’ve ruined everything.
“I’m sorry. I followed you, no da,” Chichiri said, sheepishly, but without shame.
“Followed? Me?! Why?!” Tasuki felt a strange glimmer of hope. Could it be perhaps that Chichiri followed him for a reason? One involving uncontrollable lust? Could it be that he was jealous of the whore? Ha! It had all gone according to plan. Except, not at all, but, hey, all’s well that ends well, Tasuki figured.
“Tasuki, you drink all night and sleep all day, no da. It’s not a healthy, for your body or your spirit, no da. We could be facing an attack at any time. I need you healthy and strong…not hung over and smelling like sake, no da.”
The grin Tasuki had been suppressing wilted. A fucking lecture? No jealousy? No lust? Not even concern? Just fucking duty. Just celestial warrior business as usual? Is he serious? Does he care at all about me?! Jerk! I can’t take this anymore!
“God damn it, Chichiri! Is that all you think about? The next attack?” Furious, Tasuki jolted to his feet. “You wanna talk healthy—the other night was the first time I don’t know how long I’ve seen you without the mask! There was that, and now you’re gonna go back to that stupid happy act and…and…I hate that god damn mask, you know that?”
Chichiri looked up at Tasuki, with a childlike expression of concern and questioning. Tasuki realized that Chichiri didn’t understand. He didn’t love him, and he wouldn’t…not as Tasuki wanted him too. Tasuki’s heart sank miserably. He was just going to have to give this up.
“Never mind, Chichiri. I’ll try…harder. Be a better warrior. I’m going to bed right now, see?” Tasuki turned and headed towards his room. He was a fool for ever imagining there might be something…
He was nearly round the corner when he almost missed the barely audible “Tasuki…”
He turned back. Chichiri didn’t look at him, but stared out into the stars.
“People are uncomfortable when they see my scar. I don’t want to make anyone uncomfortable. I didn’t…you…I didn’t mean to upset you. Do what makes you happy.”
Chichiri looked down into his hands. “Everyone should be happy.”
Fuck. I am an asshole, Tasuki realized. He was worried. He does care. And I just ripped him a new one. What in the hell do I do now?
“It wasn’t good,” Tasuki said, words without thinking.
“Hunh?” Chichiri swung his masked face to Tasuki.
“You asked me how…the company…was. Nothing happened. I realized there was somewhere else I wanted to be.”
Tasuki walked back to sit down next to Chichiri, who didn’t really seem to get what had just taken place, but still had that simple smile as he gazed peacefully at the night.
“I’m sorry I said that, Chichiri. About the mask. I know…it’s a big deal for you.”
“I’m sorry too.”
Chichiri let out a long sigh. “Lots of things,” he replied. When he didn’t go on, Tasuki decided not to pry, though he was dying to see what was behind that beautiful face…his real face. All he really wanted was to sit and be quiet and listen to Chichiri’s voice go on and on and on…but listening to him breath would be good enough, for the time being.
Tasuki didn’t remember falling asleep, because he dreamt of sitting next to this beautiful boy he was madly in love with, watching the night grow old.
“I like you.
I like you a lot.
I like your ass a lot.”
Tasuki was having a very hard time. He woke up in bed, though he didn’t recall ever actually going there. The moment he’d woken up, he’d gotten a pen and some scroll and set to work.
It had been three hours. He wasn’t getting very far.
I’ve got to tell him. If I don’t, I’ll go fucking nuts. Tasuki figured something terrible would slip out eventually, and he preferred that he be sober and prepared for it.
“I want us to stay together, for as long as you can stand me. We’re the only ones left.”
Tasuki stared at the words, and as he read them, and re-read them, his ache stabbed deeper and deeper. Gods, what the hell had happened? How could they really all be dead? Tasuki ground his teeth into his lower lip until it lost feeling. A few rebellious tears escaped.
He took a deep breath, and crossed out what he had just wrote. Whether the others were dead or alive, he would still have fallen for Chichiri. It may have taken more time to realize, but Tasuki had to admit that from the moment Chichiri had scared the crap out of him on their first meeting, he hadn’t wanted to be away from him. He didn’t want Chichiri to get the idea that Tasuki was just lonely. How could he explain such a feeling to the innocent and oblivious and presumably straight seishi?
“I love you, because you’re…”
Tasuki hesitated, unsure how to say what he meant with out using such utterly ridiculous words as “awesome” or “hot,” and still steering clear of overly sentimental descriptions such as “amazing in every way” or “the cutest damn thing on two legs.”
“I love you, because you’re everything I’m not.”
It felt true.
“Chichiri…I love you, because you’re everything I’m not. Patient, generous, cool-headed and kind.”
He was on a roll.
“Everyday,” he continued to scribble, “I’m a little better because I’ve known you a little longer. If I lost you, I would lose the best part of me.”
Well, hell, if I didn’t freak him out last night, this will sure do the job, Tasuki thought, rolling eyes at himself. Let me try not to lay it on too thick…He stared down at the paper, still gnawing at his lips, and slowly, his words sank into him.
“If I lost you, I would lose the best part of me.”
Tasuki was losing nerve, fast. He’ll leave you after this. What would a monk possibly want from a stupid pervert like you? You’ll either have to keep this quiet and stay with him, or confess and never see him again. You idiot, how did you get yourself into this?!
To be without him was unthinkable, but to keep this bottled up seemed impossible. Tasuki’s chin sank to his chest as he cursed himself angrily and struggled to keep tears in check.
“Tasuki-kun?” Chichiri always did have lousy timing. Tasuki felt paralyzed. He didn’t trust his voice one bit, and his muscles all seemed to be sending the same “fuck you” response to his brain, that was frantically commanding movement. “Tasuki?” Chichiri asked again, sounding worried. Tasuki’s mouth drooped open, but Chichiri had already flung the door open, panicked.
“Oh, thank Suzako you’re alright, no da. You scared me…why didn’t you answer? Oh, is this a bad time?” Chichiri was obviously drawing some conclusion from Tasuki’s naked torso, the rest of him covered in blankets, as he was still in bed. “I’ll leave you alone.”
Tasuki had still not said a word. His eyes were fixed on Chichiri, his mouth still hanging slightly open on the off chance that something might come out. The scroll in his hands seemed like it was burning…what the fuck should he do with it? If he looked at it, Chichiri might notice and ask. He could lie. He could ignore it. He could crumple it and eat it. Hell, his mouth was already open anyway.
“Tasuki…are you alright?” Chichiri was coming towards the bed. Shit. Shit. Shit. Tasuki’s mind echoed over and over, as though even his brain had given up and was as stuck as the rest of him.
“Is this a letter or something? Bad news, Tasuki-kun?” Chichiri, looking sweetly concerned, sat next to Tasuki on the bed and looked down at the paper. Tasuki thought stopping him might be a good idea. That was as far as his brain would go. He watched helplessly as Chichiri read the gibberish. Oh god…even the bit about his ass.
At first, Chichiri had no reaction. Then, he smiled. Then, he laughed. Then, Tasuki wanted to kill himself. Where the fuck was that tessen?
“It’s not a joke!” Tasuki yelled indignantly. Oh, it was awful. He’d expected shock…maybe even disgust…but amusement? “Fuck off,” Tasuki muttered miserably.
“Oh, Tasuki,” Chichiri grinned, throwing his arms around Tasuki, who went even stiffer than he had been. Chichiri nestled his face happily against Tasuki’s chest. “No wonder you’ve been acting like such a weirdo!”
“Well, fuck, if you’re calling me a weirdo…”
“Tasuki, why didn’t you just say something?”
“Oh, sure, hey Chichiri, lovely day, by the way, I’m queer and I wanna do you.”
Chichiri let out his cheerful laughter again. “Well, I see. When you put it like that. Didn’t
you know that there’s nothing you can’t say to me? Didn’t you know that I’ll never push you away? Didn’t you ever once catch me staring at your ass?”
Tasuki’s mind was blown away. He was very much mind blown. So much for sweet, innocent Chichiri. Tasuki didn’t even think Chichiri would say the word ass, much less check one out.
“You?” he said uncertainly.
“Oh yes. Your ass. Exactly. I mean, it’s so firm!” Chichiri reached under the covers to wedge his hand between the ass in question and the mattress and give a little squeeze, causing Tasuki to yelp in a way that was less attractive than he’d intended.
Chichiri snickered while Tasuki tried to glower at him, despite the glee that was evident in his face. His glee was stunned out of him as he watched Chichiri pull off his mask, revealing a true smile underneath. Tasuki felt breathless. “Gods…”
Chichiri turned his good eye to Tasuki nervously. “I’m sorry. I’ll put it back,” he said quickly. Tasuki managed to grab his wrist as it was raising the damned mask back to the his worried face. “No. Don’t.” Tasuki thought for a moment. “Ever.”
Chichiri relaxed with a small smile and stared down at his hands. “Okay.”
“Really? Just like that?”
The mask vanished from the monk’s fingers.
“Yes. Just like that.”
All at once, Tasuki kicked aside all shyness or restraint and planted his hands on the sides of Chichiri’s face and pressed their lips together triumphantly. Chichiri was kissing him back. Holy Suzako, Tasuki thought. There are happy endings after all.