3 - Swallow Me Down, I am Your Alcohol

332 10 0

A/N: This is still a rough draft, more or less. I'm planning to add on to it. So, if there's something you'd like to see in this chapter or even this story, comment and let me know, 'kay?  Or if you just like it.


The room was filled with flickering blue light, but the house was otherwise dark. Exaggerated voices and an occasional ridiculing snort of laughter were the only sounds. Kurogane leaned back on the couch, one arm slung over the back, the other supporting the can of beer than rested on his knee.

He was watching some game show, though it had nothing to do with any interest in the show. His cousin, Tomoyo, had left the TV on earlier when she visited, and he'd been too lazy to change the channel. As he watched a colorful wheel spin across the screen, his thoughts drifted.

He was trying to herd them away from speculations about the half-lit house next door when there was a knock on his door. He stood quickly, hoping-though he'd never admit it-that it might be the kids, and that they might have something to distract him from his own empty house.

Instead, slumped shoulders and messy blond hair met his eyes when he opened the door. Dim blue eyes were hidden from him by the silky hair falling into the pale face, but Kurogane could feel the seemingly lifeless gaze focused somewhere around his knees.

It had been almost a week since he'd last seen the idiot. Since his sudden fever on Monday, his seat had been empty. Kurogane had assumed he needed rest and hadn't checked up on him.

Now, his heart pounded painfully as conflicting emotions flooded him. Fear gripped him, because he knew that something was seriously wrong if Fai was coming to him without those annoying fake smile. At the same time, his attraction to the blond came back full force. Gods, he was beautiful...Next came anger, both at Fai for not having come to him sooner and at whoever had left the blond in this broken state. Most of all, he wished he had kept an eye on this idiot so things like this wouldn't happen.

"Can I...come in?" Fai asked softly, his hesitant voice breaking Kurogane's daze and twisting his heart painfully.

"Yeah," he replied quickly, his own voice soft but gruff with emotion. He stepped aside, but Fai didn't move. Kurogane side and reached out to take his arm, drawing him into the warmth of the house.

Fai stopped when Kurogane released his arm. Those blue eyes flickered around the darkened room like a skittish animal, uncomfortable and hyper-aware of his surroundings. Kurogane ran a hand through his dark hair, wondering how he could get the other boy to relax. His eyes fell on the can sitting on the corner of the coffee table.

"Uh, do you want a beer or something?" he offered, feeling a bit out-of-place himself.

The blond nodded absently; Kurogane wasn't sure his offer had really been processed and understood. Nevertheless, he left the room to retrieve ther beverage.

When he came back, Fai was standing exactly as he had left him. Biting back a sigh, Kurogane decided it was his job to manipulate his newfound drinking buddy into a more comfortable setting. He approached the blond, his ruby eyes watching intently for the slightest sign of an adverse reaction, and pressed the cold can into the long-fingered hand before steering the boy to the couch.

The movement seemed to rouse Fai. He blinked at the can he found himself holding and raised his hand slowly to open it. Satisfied, Kurogane let himself settle back into his previously occupied corner of the couch and return to his own drinking.

The swirling colors of the game wheel recaptured his attention for a moment, but a bright flash in his peripheral drew his gaze back to his companion.

His jaw dropped as he watched Fai tip up the can and guzzle the liquid inside. The blond's Adam's apple bobbed rapidly, his pale skin practically glowing in the dim light. When the can was finally lowered, empty, to reveal vaguely disappointed features, Kurogane snapped out of his stupor.

"What the hell! You aren't supposed to drink it like that, Idiot!" He'd meant for it to be an incredulous but relatively calm scolding, but his gruff voice and concerned surprise made it sound as if he'd shouted the reprimand. Fai looked up at him with wide eyes. They were less glassy than before, but there was no indication he understood any more than when he'd appeared in the doorway.

Fai giggled suddenly, and Kurogane's eyebrow twitched in response. He watched warily as a grin slowly spread over those tempting, pale lips. It wasn't one of the usual fake smiles, but instead a sort of sloppy grin. Fai's eyelids drooped, and his half-lidded gaze was fixed on the lower half of Kurogane's face. The darker man swallowed hard. He had a sneaking suspicion of what the blond-who was now crawling towards him across the length of the couch-might have in mind.

"Meow, what are you thinking?" Fai asked, invading Kurogane's personal space.

The black-haired man blinking. "Are you seriously drunk?" he asked, staring at the still-meowing teenager trying to crawl into his lap.

"Of course not, Kuro-chuu, meow," Fai denied, but his already-flushed cheeks betrayed him.

Kurogane shoved at the blond's shoulder, trying to push away his tormentor and his own sneaking sense of disappointment. Fai moved away, and a premature wave of relief washed over Kurogane.

It disappeared when the blond suddenly grabbed his own can from his hand an downed that too.

"Hey!" Kurogane snapped, "That one wasn't even yours!"

"That's okay," Fai giggled, "You would've shared with me anyway, right, Kuro-chan?"

"I would not!" Kurogane roar, feeling heat that didn't come from alcohol staining his cheeks, "And stop with the damn na-Hey!"

Fai had suddenly slumped forward, landing on the broad chest under him with more force than Kurogane had thought possible for such a slight frame. He pushed back the blond bangs in disbelief, but it looked at if the other really had passed out already. The empty can rolled away silently across the carpeted floor.

"Lightweight," Kurogane grumbled to himself. He began to stroke Fai's thick, soft hair absentmindedly, his eyes focused on the tv without really seeing the bizarre crime drama that had replaced the game show.

Instead, his mind's eye was once again running over the various bruises decorating the body that rested across his own. A small part of him was cursing his inability to overlook any injustice, but it was overruled by the inability itself. An even smaller part tried to suggest that there was more to the situation, something to do with the victim himself, but Kurogane forced himself to ignore it.

Fai shifted his weight in his sleep, bringing Kurogane's thoughts back to himself. He blushed at the sight of his bronzed fingers tangled in the golden locks. He'd never admit it, but maybe that tiny, ignored part of his consciousness had a point.

He slid himself out from underneath Fai, carefully moving the unconcious blond onto the couch. He thought about leaving it at that, but the good manners his parents had once ground into him wouldn't allow it. Grumbling to himself, he found a pillow an a blanket.

As he spread the blanket over the immoble form, he caught a glimpse of the blond's sleeping face. He found himself crouching down, studying it as he had before. Now the pale skin was flushed with alcohol, not fever, but the effect was the same. Kurogane found himself just as captivated. Without the mask of the forced smile, Fai was even more beautiful.

Shaking his head to clear it of such girly thoughts, Kurogane stood and headed toward his own room. At the doorway, he stopped and looked back. Fai looked so innocent, and an ache in Kurogane's chest reminded him how much he wanted that to be true.

Almost as an afterthought, he turned back to turn off the TV. He had no idea how he ended up back at the couch, his sharp eyes picking out now-familiar features in the darkness.

"Eventually, you will tell me what's happening to you," Kurogane promised himself and the sleeping figure. Without thinking, he leaned down and pressed his lips to Fai's temple.

Then, wondering how concerned he really should be about his own actions, he went to bed.