Series: Weiss Kreuz
Warnings: Angst; hints at Crashers
Disclaimer: I don't own any of the Weiss boys and am only borrowing them for the purposes of writing something for my honey. ^~ No infringement is intended.
Crossposted: ayaxomi and _tsukiyono_omi_
Thanks: To Amet for betaing and encouraging this.
Author's Notes: I haven't written Weiss Kreuz (Kapital and not Gluhen for once) in a few months but sandinmyshoes requested something Aya and Omi oriented with a bit thrown in about Aya's Crasher's coat for a ficlet meme I put up and I couldn't not write it for her. So this is for Amet whom I dearly love and adore in the hopes it might brighten her day a little.
A Weiss Kreuz story
The rag sailed across the room, fueled by frustration, Hidaka Ken sensing something coming his way and ducking but not before the dirty white cloth nailed him in the back of the head. They all watched it bounce, falling in silence at Siberian’s feet.
It really was possible to feel the tension in the room tighten, Omi thought idly, turning the bottle cap in hand without looking at it, listening to it thump-thump against the table top, too loud but anything was better than the silence. Things had been silent for far too long already.
“Yohji,” Ken grimaced, lips curving as if he wanted to grin, the name tearing itself through his clenched teeth as his hands found his hips, nudging the cloth on the floor with his toe, “What the hell was that?”
Crossing his arms, Yohji rummaged around in his apron, finding first his lighter and then his cigarettes, a sure sign that something was up given how much Momoe hated him smoking around the flowers. There was an almost angry clicking of his lighter, his thumb striking it in quick jerks before lowering his face, cigarette already between his lips, into the flame, waiting until the tip was glowing before he took a drag, tipping his head, “Off-hand?” He murmured around the white stick, reaching up to take it between his fingers flicking the ash, “I’d say a nine-pointer. I was going for ten but your hard head got in the way.”
“Awesome, Yohji. Really, awesome. And is there any particular reason you’re being a prick right now or did I just get lucky?”
There was a soft, contemptuous snort, “Please. You wouldn’t know what to do if you did get lucky, Ken. Not unless it was black and white and round. What’s it like being soccer ball-sexual?”
Ken bent down, picking up the discarded cloth, rolling and balling it in his hands, hard gaze fixed on Yohji though he was smiling now, or rather attempting to. It looked painful to Omi. “Keep this up, Yohji and we’re going to do a little experiment. It’s called how far can I kick a soccer ball up your –“
Omi sat up out of his hunch, turning his bottle cap one more time, murmuring, “I’ll do it.”
Both men fell silent, Ken staring at his shoes, cloth caught between his hands, tugging hard enough that Omi was surprised it didn’t tear while Yohji’s eyes narrowed, free hand lifting to rake through messy blond locks, taking another puff of his cigarette, the minute lines around his mouth tightening. Then he shook his head, flicking his cigarette again. “No. Not you. I’ll do it.”
Omi almost said why not me but was beaten to the punch by Ken who lifted his head, chin thrust out, looking as if he were still scrapping for a fight and daring Yohji to try him. “I don’t see why we have to. There’s no need. It’s just what he does. He—he goes out sometimes and we don’t see him for days. This is nothing new.”
“He’s not a damn cat,” Yohji drawled, stubbing out his cigarette in an empty planter, “We didn’t let him out and he’s not just going to pop back up, not after this long. It’s been over a week – almost two. We have orders from Birman. While I like to be as constant and true as the next guy –“
“You? Constant and true, Yohji? Give me a break.”
“Oh very nice, Ken,” Yohji replied after another interminable staring match, “My point is that he didn’t just wander out. We lost him. In the middle of a mission. There’s been no contact made, no sign of his bitchy red head. Nothing. Nada. Zilch. So far? We’re batting zero in the Fujimiya Aya department.”
“There’s no body either. That means something,” Ken insisted.
Yohji shook his head, crossing his arms, “That means shit, Ken. Sometimes bodies don’t get recovered.”
“Oh wake up. This is not some goddamn movie. There isn’t going to be a happy ending with tears and chicks for all. We’re not bringing our buddy home on his shield. Kritiker doesn’t work that way.”
“Well, maybe it should.”
Omi watched the two of them, then pushed his chair back, reaching around behind to unlace his apron, lifting it with quick, deft movements over his head and tossing it on the table.
“Omi, I said that –“
“I know what you said, Yohji-kun.
“Omi, we can wait, you know. Yohji’s being an ass about all of this because he hasn’t gotten laid in the last couple of nights. You don’t have to do this and certainly not now,” Ken shook his head, sympathetic.
Omi paused, looking at the both of them, almost helplessly, “Yes, Ken-kun, I do. Everything has to be catalogued and put away so it can be… “He shrugged, turning away. “It has to be me, Ken-kun.”
It probably said more than a little that Ken backed off, Yohji turning away to stare moodily out the window at the row of girls already outside. It was just as well that Omi had other things to do; he wasn’t ready to face the question of where Aya was yet again.
He’d never been sure what had started things between them, when he had started to look at Aya as something more than just his partner, another member of the team. Or when Aya had started seeing him as more than a resource, Omi sometimes waking up to find a trench coat draped over his shoulders, keeping him warm in the cold damp of the basement. When sure touches, simple brushes of their fingers while reaching for potting soil had become something more, something that burned, that kept him awake at night. There was so much he didn’t know about Aya, so much he might never know about Aya, and it had intrigued him, that sense of mystery, a deepening well that confused him, making him wonder if part of the attraction was that he didn’t really know Aya at all.
It certainly didn’t help that Aya could be damn near unreadable, scowling when puzzled and about as welcoming as a sore-toothed bear at times. There were just some places you didn’t go with him, lines that he could only cross in secret, half-afraid Aya really would kill him if he knew about those times he shadowed Abyssinian’s hospital visits.
Hospital visits. He wondered about those now. About the girl lying in that hospital bed, in a place that reeked of cold death and empty machinery, with little more life than a waxen mannequin. Presumably, it would be taken care of; Aya had to have made arrangements, he was too careful with her, too punctual in his visits, too predictable for him not to have.
What if she woke up? Omi shuddered at the thought.
He couldn’t think on that, on the possible expressions that might flicker across that pale, thin face if she learned Aya was dead. Not now, not when he was boxing up Aya’s room, box by box slowing only when he had to construct a new casket of cardboard, laying inside what few personal effects Aya kept with him. There wasn’t much, a few books, some journals, and the occasional oddity, like a small doll he’d found buried in one of the drawers, singed and dirty around the face and dress, dark eyes a little too knowing as he’d examined it, spooking him until he’d packed it away, swathed in paper, shielded from that gaze but feeling it still just the same. Almost everything else seemed of little consequence, a comb here or there, a loose buckle under the bed, and Aya’s work clothes draped over the arm chair in the corner, ready for him to come in and put them on.
Something in Omi closed up, just shriveled to think he never would again.
There was something wrong with him. That he felt so cold, so empty and just drained. He’d thought if any of them had … well, if they’d lost anyone, he’d be in tears, inconsolable or maybe raging. Instead, he just was, moving, mechanical, still not entirely believing because this was Aya, Aya who’d always seemed so much more than mortal, more like a force of nature, a force of vengeance and justice. That Aya could die seemed impossible. No, Aya could not die. Not like this, not on some simple mission, regular as clockwork.
Except, it seemed, he had.
There was nothing left now but the closet, Omi opening the doors and staring blindly at the clothes hanging. There wasn’t really that much left, just a few hangers of jeans and a couple of coats and a rather large, plastic bag towards the back. It drew his eye, the neat white bag obscuring its contents, revealing nothing more than black and he reached for it, shoving those other hangers out of the way, leaning and wiggling until it came free, surprisingly heavy for a garment bag. He held it, the bag folding on itself near the bottom, lifting it as far as his arm could reach above his head, feeling the weight of it, looking around until he found the door hook and hanging it there. Omi took a step back, rubbing his upper arms then crossing them, tilting his head, moving closer then away as if to take it all in.
It was normal plastic that met his touch when he overcame his hesitation, coming easily undone when he reached for the zipper, the scent of worn leather and a familiar aftershave that he easily identified as Aya reaching his nose. There was a plastic squeal, a rumbly rustle of material as he peeled back the semi-transparent flap, watching the way the light played off the silver buckle of the collar hanging loosely around the lip of the hanger, still polished and free of any hint of rust or tarnish. He reached with careful fingertips, hesitating then brushing the edges of the leather strap, pushing away first one corner of the bag then the other, another swish of sound following as it fell away, pooling near his feet.
He could not have been more startled. It looked like something that belonged in Yohji’s closet, not Aya’s. It wasn’t so much the fact it was another long coat, what should have been a trench coat, rather it was what had been done to the coat, the strategic cuts and zippers in places no Aya coat should ever have -- zippers and buckles and straps, more than he’d seen anywhere outside of the red light district. It seemed alive, more so than anything else he’d packed away, flowing around and off the hanger, the nearly detached sleeves hanging lower, almost expectantly. Waiting to be put on again, he supposed and he reached out without thinking, almost flinching at the butter-soft leather, worn in the right places, no longer new and tight with uncomfortable bunchings. There were leather pants on a lower attachment just behind it, with yet more buckles and straps though there were more tears in the fabric than modesty warranted.
There was something wrong with this, something wild and feral and not fitting at all with what he knew of Aya. Which admittedly wasn’t a lot. It was uncomfortable, almost painful, just as finding out about the girl in the hospital had been, having to see Aya in another light, in another life and knowing, knowing …
That he was never mine..
“Look at you,” he murmured, feeling the need to speak, to break the oppressive stillness. “I wonder where you came from.”
Omi didn’t start, he didn’t jump or screech or do any of those things he might have done had someone been writing his story. Instead he went still, eyes darting for the split second it took him to identify that harsh, smoky whisper, turning his face to glance over his shoulder, finding familiar violet eyes staring back, wide and …was that a cut in the corner of the left one, nearly hidden under a dried splash of blood? He pivoted around in a slow circuit, feeling the world tilt as he did so, impressed that he wasn’t doing anything more than just blinking at Aya, at the way he was half-in, half out of his bedroom window, one torn, bloody leg resting unsteadily on the floor, the other bent on the sill. His coat had definitely seen better days, torn and not in strategic, alluring rips like the coat behind him, but ones that spoke of nails and explosions, the blood splattered all of Abyssinian, his face and hands, even gumming in his hair making Omi wonder how the hell he’d managed to get this far without drawing attention.
But then Aya had his little ways.
“Kyoto?” Omi repeated, voice low, almost hushed, taking one step, then halting, almost afraid, afraid to draw near and find out –
Aya was watching him, eyes dark beneath drawn brows, sweat beading there. He looked tired, dead on his feet really but he wasn’t moving, not towards the bed, not away from the window, instead that piercing violet gaze was almost probing, boring into Omi’s, neither frowning nor scowling. Omi took another tentative step forward, followed by another and another, pausing only when they were near enough to touch, his hands rubbing against his shorts nervously.
“What were you doing in Kyoto?”
That other foot came down, heavy and thumping against the carpeted floor, as if there was no strength behind it and Omi winced, particularly at the odd angle it was being held. But Aya’s eyes were fixed on the coat, distant and almost unfocused before they found Omi again, “Finding myself.”
Omi drew in a breath, “And did you?”
“No,” Aya admitted, the words slow, followed up with a half shrug, “But I was pointed in the right direction.”
“And the coat?”
Aya shifted, his katana resting against his thigh, gaze drifting over it, “Trophy of war. Skin of a leopard, if you want.”
“Are you going to imply you changed your spots?”
Aya tilted his head, looking wearier than he’d ever seen him, “That would imply I’d changed.”
“And you haven’t?”
“Do any of us really change? Really?”
“I’d like to think so. Though,’ Omi found himself smiling, the expression feeling strange, unreal, “given how you’re just sitting and bleeding all over the floor – maybe not. I should have known not even an explosion would knock some sense into you.”
Aya winced, shifting again and glancing at the coat, “If they couldn’t do it, then something like that certainly isn’t going to.”
Omi chuckled or meant to, the sound catching in his throat and chest, startling them both, what might pass for concern for Aya flitting across his bloodied features as Omi shook his head, “You’re not going to tell me who they are, are you?”
“I was going to say, complicated.”
Swallowing, Omi let himself reach out then, with just as much ginger care as he had with that coat, setting aside those questions and brushing eager fingers against Aya’s forearm, looking up at him then over him, fingers tightening, needing to know that he was there, that he was really there, and not another ghost, not like the leather and buckle one behind them, that dead feeling inside giving way to something more frantic, smoothing his hands over his chest and arms aware of the liberties he was taking but unable to stop himself. Not even when Aya pressed a hand against his face, lifting it and he was blinking again for an entirely different reason now, Aya’s face closer than he remembered and then he couldn’t see anything at all, aware of nothing more than the taste of blood and smoke, of warm lips and surprisingly steady hands gripping his cheek and arm, of being pulled close and held as he never had been and had always wanted. The way they never had before, all those furtive touches and glances paling in this one moment, feeling as if they’d belonged to someone else’s life, the world seeming to tilt yet again and he wondered if he was that faint or if it was just the feel of everything changing, that seeming click before something new could begin.
“Omi, I – “ Aya managed somehow to murmur, the words finding their way past the press of hungry lips and stolen breath, his heart beating faster as he shook his head.
It could wait. All those little questions and mysteries and maybes, they could wait. What he wanted was right here and now and he wasn’t going let it pass by, one more shade added to the balance of all his regrets. Not when everything was colliding together in one perfect moment, one that he knew wouldn’t last forever.
It didn’t have to. Right now was enough.