Pairing: Junba (main!), Sakumiya, Ohno/?, others possible
Rating: up to R
Genre: AU, romance
Plot: Although they are both young students at college, both the youngest brothers within three, and both part of high society, there are worlds between Jun and Masaki. Jun comes from a rich, traditional and conservative family, while Masaki's family gained wealth and fame by luck. Masaki is cheerful and enjoys life to the fullest. Jun is unusually earnest and distanced. Although part of the same glamorous world, their paths would have never crossed, they would have never even talked, but then Masaki's brothers decide he needs to catch up with his studies, and hire Jun as his tutor. With being so different it seems they will never get closer, until they realize that they both hold a sad secret.
Note: This is dedicated to yukitsubute. I had (and still have) a lot of fun writing this, and I wonder where it takes me to. I can promise you some fluff, some fun and some drama (the usual ^^) There might even be some hurt & comfort.
When Masaki rings at Jun’s door, he feels unusually nervous. This time though it’s not the maid opening the door but Jun himself, and in an instant Masaki doesn’t feel nervous anymore, instead he feels expectant and fuzzy. Boy, he has it bad, really. They look at each other for a while, before Jun smiles and steps aside. “Come in,” he says, sounding unusually strained too. Good, Masaki isn’t the only one feeling awkward and a bit scared about this here. Masaki squeals inwardly when he realizes that this here really feels like a freaking date!!
They hug awkwardly, and Masaki isn’t sure if he can kiss Jun now, or if he should do something else… or… what the hell is he supposed to do.
“So,” Masaki stutters when he pulls away and slips out of his shoes and takes the slippers Jun offers him.
“So,” Jun answers.
For a moment they look at each other, then they burst into giggles. Jun takes Masaki’s arm and carefully pulls him along. “Let’s not make it more awkward than it’s supposed to be,” he says firmly.
Masaki nods, letting himself be tugged along by Jun. “Did you prepare some movies?” he asks.
“Yes, all the horror movies you told me I just have to watch,” Jun points out. “And something to eat.”
Masaki looks at him reproachfully. “I told you not to do too much,” he scolds.
“It isn’t much,” Jun chuckles. “I just prepared a cake I can eat too. And maki.”
“Really?” Masaki asks happily. “And is there popcorn?”
“Yes, and chocolate.”
“Great,” Masaki teases. “And I brought beer. And pizza.”
“But I told you not to bring anything!” Jun frowns. “I invited you. It’s impolite if I asked you to bring something for us!”
“You didn’t ask me,” Masaki smiles. Jun’s traditional and conservative way to see things is kind of difficult but also cute. He assumes they’ll need a while to work around it. “Besides, I told you not to cook something.”
Jun sighs. “That’s not the same.”
Masaki grabs his arm and brushes his finger down to Jun’s hand, happy that Jun lets him. “Does it matter?”
Jun smiles. “No.”
They make themselves comfortable in the huge living room because Jun is – as always it seems – alone at home. They watch two pointless horror movies, getting jump-scared in between and making fun of the cheap special effects and horrible plot. At one point Sho comes home, smiling at them when he says hello, but much to Masaki’s surprise he doesn’t ask any weird questions towards Jun and also doesn’t enlighten him with his typical old-brother attitude. He just asks if they had a nice day and tells them he is in his study if they need something. Jun seems to be surprised too.
“That’s a new attitude,” Jun muses.
“Really?” Masaki asks in interest.
Jun shrugs. “You know, Sho is… Sho. He is like, I don’t know, very smart. But he is hard to read, and he is bossy and he sometimes has this know-it-all attitude going. So, tonight was different.”
“I see,” Masaki muses.
“Masaki-kun?” Jun looks at him surprisingly earnest. “May I ask something?”
“Sure,” Masaki answers in surprise, kind of worried what Jun wants to tell him. Hopefully he won’t tell him that he just sees him as a friend or doesn’t like him enough or…
“Don’t be mad at me, okay? But I know it’s just a façade,” Jun mumbles. “I just don’t get why you do it.”
“Huh?” Masaki blinks.
“This whole I’m too cool for the world, crazy party-maniac thing. It’s not you at all.” Jun brushes through his black locks thoughtfully, looking at Masaki through these dark eyes of his. “You are kind and supportive, always there for your friend, and you enjoy it to lie on the sofa and watch horror movies. So, why the crazy party thing?”
Masaki blushes, there is something about Jun and the way he looks at him that makes his stomach clench. And before he can stop himself, he hears himself say. “ Because I’m stupid.”
“What?” Jun blinks.
“I’m stupid,” Masaki stutters, wondering once more what kind of buttons Jun pushes in him that he just can’t lie to him. “I mean, as in: I’m not smart enough. Money is all I have. If I don’t throw parties, people will realize that I really… am nothing.”
If he pretends not to even try at university, not to care, he is sure the others will believe he is just that typical careless rich kid. It’s better than everyone realizing he is just too stupid to do anything right.
He wonders if Jun can make anything out of his random explanation, but Jun is smart, and he has a feeling about people, surprisingly insightful actually. He squeezes his eyes, staring at Masaki for a while, and looks like he isn’t sure if he should smack him or hug him, then he goes for something in between and squeezes his arm. “You are NOT stupid. How can you even think that? You are a wonderful person, everyone loves you! Your social intelligence is probably twice as high as everyone else’s. You are airheaded sometimes, but that’s nothing to be ashamed about. Having problems with integrals doesn’t make someone stupid,” he huffs. “I never want to hear something like that from you again!”
He looks hot like that, Masaki thinks, the way he looks mad all of a sudden. “It’s difficult not to think it,” Masaki explains carefully.
“Who told you, you are stupid?” Jun wants to know all of a sudden, surprisingly insistent. “Or does this thought really solely come from yourself?”
All colour gets basically drained from Masaki’s face. How the hell did Jun even guess it? How did he know? Jun seems to be scared too all of a sudden, like he just realized that he hit a sore point. “I’m sorry, Masaki-kun, I didn’t mean to stir in any wounds, I…”
Masaki smiles, wrapping his arms around Jun’s neck and pulling him closer. “Sh,” he says before kissing him softly. When they pull apart and Jun looks at him through questioning eyes, Masaki smiles sadly. “I’m not sure if I’m ready to talk about it yet. But I will, I promise. I will. Are you going to talk to me too once we are both ready? About why you are so serious, and don’t want to have fun.”
Jun eyes widen in horror but Masaki doesn’t move his gaze away, well aware that he needs to hold it if he wants Jun to open up to him at one point. Jun nods carefully after a while, pulling his glance away, and Masaki knows he has won this little important fight. “I can’t promise you that I’ll be ready soon,” he mumbles, and looks sad all of a sudden. “I wonder if I’ll be ever ready to talk about it, but I promise once I am you are the first I’ll talk to.”
Masaki nods. It’s enough reassurance for him. He hugs Jun tighter, his fingers brushing through his thick hair. He smiles a bit when he feels Jun’s hands wandering over his back too. The fact that Jun doesn’t push him away means so much to him, he has no words.
Sho and Nino have decided to meet once a week in a restaurant Sho is going to choose so that they won’t meet any of Nino’s friends. Nino runs late this time because his class takes longer as he wrote Sho. When he finally comes through the door wrapped in his scarf and his jacket, with cheeks painted in a beautiful red from the cold air, Sho can’t help but take his image in for a while. He looks so young and fresh, but Sho has learned to see the difference between Nino and a kid. When he first saw him, he thought he was barely a teen, but now that he knows him better, he realizes more details about him, like the knowing eyes, and the slight tiny dimples around his lips, the bags under his eyes when he studies too much. The way he moves and talks, and smiles, it’s nothing like a kid’s way to do something. By now Sho wonders how he could ever mistake him for a middle schooler. No wonder Nino was mad at him first.
“Are we eating something which name I can’t pronounce?” Nino asks with a chuckle as he sits down on the other side of the table.
Sho chuckles. “They have soba here.”
Sho grins. “But you liked the seafood we had last time and the risotto.”
“Yes, I did,” Nino admits. “But I promise I’ll like soba more. So,” he pauses. “Did you try out your new strategy?”
“You mean, not to come over as prying and how did you put it-“ Sho smirks teasingly. “Know it all?” Much to his delight Nino blushes slightly. He tends to slip occasionally and is pretty direct then, but Sho doesn’t mind. At least there is someone who tells him what’s going wrong. “I think it went well. Jun even came to me later on after Masaki-kun left and asked me if I want some of the sushi leftovers. He has never asked by himself before!”
Sho realizes that Nino smiles dreamily, like he is just listening to a wonderful story. Maybe his talk is so boring that Nino is drifting to a daydream? “We can talk about something else,” he offers.
Nino blinks in obvious confusion. “Why?”
“I don’t want you to get bored with our meetings,” Sho points out.
Nino’s eyes widen. “I’m not bored,” he defends himself. “And even if, would it be important?”
Sho chuckles lightly. “Well, I wouldn’t want you to get bored of me. Otherwise I couldn’t look forward to our little meetings!” Much to his surprise Nino blushes slightly at his words. Did he say something funny? To his relief though Nino starts chatting about his day at university all of a sudden. Apparently Sho’s words didn’t unsettle him.
“Tell me I’m not the only one who finds this weird,” Satoshi whispers at Nino, Masaki and Shingo, and points at the three brothers in the living room. “What is this? Three stoic brothers are sitting in the living room… I don’t even know who is the scariest.”
“Yeah,” Nino agrees, though he sounds somewhat half-hearted “A joke could start like that.”
“I know who looks the scariest,” Masaki whispers, and points at Takuya.
Shingo just laughs. “Don’t overanalyse it,” he chuckles. “I’m sure they are really cute and nice.”
They have finally managed to meet, all of them together in one place. Masaki has seen Sho a few times already, but he has never really talked to him a lot, and Takuya? He hasn’t seen him at all. He looks kind of intimidation with his tall stature, and his earnest expression, the strong eyes. Shingo however seems to be kind of accustomed to him…?
Jun looks a bit overstrained by the situation too, and Masaki just wished they could go somewhere else and just hang out. The unsettling look on his face makes Masaki’s heart ache slightly.
Jun looks at Sho and nods towards the salt. “Sho-san, could you please give me-“
Jun isn’t able to finish his sentence because Shingo spits out his drink through his nose again. He coughs, nodding thankfully when Takuya frowns but gracefully hands him a handkerchief. “Did you just call your brother, Sho-SAN!?”
Jun blinks. “Yes,” he says.
“Are you always so formal towards your brothers?”
“That’s how my family calls the older siblings,” Jun points out with a frown.
“You don’t?” Sho asks Shingo in return now.
Shingo laughs. When Sho looks at him in bewilderment, he manages to go for a more serious expression. “No, in fact I’m sometimes Shin-chan, and Satoshi is called Sa-chan. This kind of etiquette is not our real forte.” He smiles, and gladly decides to change the subject. “You are really good at your studies, Jun-san, right?” Shingo asks while he takes a spoon full with rice. They have all worked together today and cooked for hours to make something that would be good enough for their guests. Even Nino helped which earned him an invitation to the gathering. Actually Masaki is relieved to have him around. Makes the situation less tensed for him.
“I’m alright.” Jun smiles slightly. “It’s nothing really… In comparison to my brothers I’m just middle-class. Sho-san is very intelligent, he did a lot better than I can ever do. I don’t think I can live up to his expectations.”
“But you are on top of your classes all the time!” Masaki exclaims in shock before Sho can even react. He glares at Sho. “How can that not be enough for you!?”
“I’m sure it’s just a misunderstanding,” Nino intervenes, much to Masaki’s surprise. When Masaki throws him a questioning glance, he just blushes slightly. “It’s just my intuition,” he mumbles.
Satoshi throws him a warning glance. “Masaki,” he whispers so that the others can’t hear it. “Shut up.”
Sho however has blushed furiously at Masaki’s remark. “But it is enough,” he defends himself. “It really is!”
“It is not,” Jun argues calmly, and Masaki is stunned that he actually has the guts to speak up against Sho. And to say what he thinks. His heart swells slightly and his stomach feels warm when he realizes that Jun indeed changed since they met for the first time. He is able to speak his mind, at least sometimes. “Really, it doesn’t matter to me anymore, Sho-san, don’t worry. You don’t need to hide your feelings or anything. We both know that it’s impossible for me to come even remotely close to your expectations.”
“Hm,” Shingo tilts his head thoughtfully. As always his calm and casual way of handling things comes in handy this time too. “When Satoshi and I ended up raising Masaki, I bought a book. It’s called-“ he makes a dramatic pause, and Masaki knows whatever he is going to say is either embarrassing or awkward or weird or everything at the same time. “Parental advice. Education and expectations towards your kids. And it says that you shouldn’t pressure your kids with your expectations and dreams. You need to give them room to breathe, and also chances to fail here and there,” he recites like he actually learned it by heart. “Give them confidence to grow and turn into good people, and develop their own talents.”
They bought a freaking book after their parents died in an accident!? In any other situation Masaki might have burst into a giggle fit.
“Did you really pressure Jun that much, Sho?” Takuya asks all of a sudden, a frown gracing his face now and making it look even firmer.
Sho sighs. “Apparently I can’t do anything right at the moment. Last Saturday when the three kids went to the concert, I apparently didn’t react so well either. Although I just wanted them to have fun! And about Jun’s studies… I never said anything! As long as he tries I promised myself not to complain!”
“Concert?” Satoshi blinks and throws Masaki a surprised glance.
Uh, busted. Masaki sighs. Why did Sho have to mention the concert he had been hiding so well from his brothers. However, he has no time to think about that now. “This means you never said anything at all, right? Nothing? Not even some praise or a compliment?” He ignores the way Satoshi tries to kick him under the table to make him shut up. “This is so mean! I mean no one ever considers Jun-kun’s feeling. He is a kind and smart person. What about his feelings?”
Sho stays awkwardly silent after that, a deep frown on his face like he is going through his mind and tries to remember if he ever praised his little brother.
“What?” Takuya wants to know. “Did you? Never praise him?”
Sho frowns in highest concentration. “I’m trying to remember,” he stutters.
Masaki rolls his eyes in annoyance and glares at Sho. When he looks into Jun’s direction, he sees a warm smile gracing his lips. He secretly angles for Masaki’s hand under the table and squeezes it. “It’s okay,” he whispers so low that only Masaki can hear him.
There is not much Masaki can say though because Takuya picked up the cue now. “I can’t believe you,” Takuya grumbles.
“Wait a moment,” Sho suddenly says with a frown on his face. “Did you?”
“Did you praise Jun for something?” There is something in Sho’s eyes, an angry glance and it reminds Masaki of how Jun told him that they are all graced by short temper. “Because really, you aren’t even home much to do so!”
“Anyone, a glass of white wine?” Nino intervenes all of a sudden, basically jumping to Sho’s aid again because Masaki is sure one should rather not piss Takuya off. This time however Nino really manages to deescalate the situation, together with Shingo of course, because both of them start providing everyone with drinks, telling weird stories, and soon Masaki can feel the tension subsiding.
Jun is still holding his hand.
In a calmer moment they both manage to meet in the kitchen alone, telling everyone they are catching the dessert.
“Everything alright?” Masaki whispers.
“For now, it seems yes,” Jun answers. “This is not over though. I know them. They are going to pester me the whole way home about what I feel and how I feel, and if I really believe Sho thinks low of me.”
Masaki feels bad all of a sudden. He just wanted to jump in for Jun, not give him a hard time. “I’m sorry,” he says meekly.
Jun shakes his head, smiling at him in the most beautiful way possible. “No, don’t be. Because no one ever defended me in the way you did today. So…” he blushes and steps forward, kissing Masaki softly before pulling away again. “Thank you.”
A/N: So... Jun and Masaki had a date, or something like that (they are too shy to give it a name :D) And Sho and Nino are meeting regularly :D
And can you believe that Jun spoke up against his brothers and told them what he feels and thinks? All thanks to Masaki and his whole-hearted support. I had kinda fun writing the dinner, because each person defended someone else. Shingo was there to save Takuya, Masaki for Jun, and Nino for Sho.
Next chapter will be a little dramatic, and soon we'll be diving into Masaki's and Jun's pasts. And the reasons why the are they way they are.