hermiones: (pot // hyoutei)
Cat ([personal profile] hermiones) wrote2008-10-04 06:49 pm

PoT Fic: "Taking Stock" (2/3) (Atobe/Shishido/Oshitari)

Title: Taking Stock (2/3)
Pairing: Atobe/Shishido/Oshitari
Rating: R
Summary: Birthdays. The Big Three-Oh. Part 2/3. Part 1 is here. Part 3 to come later this month. ;)
Warnings: Rude language, some sexual content.



Oshitari likes to 'phone Atobe at work when he's bored of playing Minesweeper. Atobe is rarely bored at work – at least, not because he has nothing to do – and so he is pleasingly annoyed by the frequent interruptions. It reminds Oshitari of throwing wads of paper onto Atobe's desk in the middle of maths class. Sometimes, he leaves messages. Occasionally, they're rude.

“Keigo,” he says, after the beep. “If you don't pick up I'm going to su-”

“Yes, hello,” Atobe says, hurriedly. “What do you want.”

“Are you with somebody?” Oshitari says.

“What,” Atobe says. “No. My secretary. Wait a second.”

“Is she wearing those patent heels again,” Oshitari continues. “Is that why you're flustered?”

Atobe puts him on hold. Atobe has the most annoying hold music in Tokyo – more annoying even than the car insurance lot. Mostly, Atobe's hold music features Oshitari's favourite classical pieces played on an out-of-tune keyboard by a blind monkey on crack. He's halfway through a massacre of Chopin by the time Atobe returns to the 'phone.

“Please,” Oshitari pleads. “Change your hold music. Please.”

“Why,” Atobe asks. “I don't have to listen to it.”

“You secretly wish to destroy me,” Oshitari says. “I knew it.”

“I could think of better ways to do it than hold music,” Atobe says, loftily. “And besides, I'm not doing anything until you stop my 'cell from going 'Priiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiime' when people ring me.”

“Not a chance,” Oshitari says, smugly. “Too many good stories have come out of it.”

“The Chinese businessman story is not a good story-”

“No, true, it's an excellent one,” Oshitari says. “You are Megatron. Admit it.”

“I am not,” Atobe says.

“Yes, you are,” Oshitari says. “Puny humans. Must destroy.”

“I'll put you on hold again,” Atobe says.

“Anything but that!” Oshitari mock-howls. “How can you treat me this way. So cruel and so heartless. I feel desperately unloved.”

“What do you want,” Atobe says. “I'm meeting the Americans in fifteen minutes.”

“Take food,” Oshitari says. “Lots of food.”

There is a long pause. “You're making gluttony jokes?” Atobe asks, incredulous.

“That was ill thought out,” Oshitari admits. “Anyway, I rang to check you're still booked off for the 3rd to the 7th.”

“Yes,” Atobe says. “I've had to move around some things, but yes. I wish you'd tell me what we're doing. You know I don't like surprises.”

“I like surprises,” Oshitari says.

“It's not your birthday,” Atobe says. “And it's not a surprise for you, is it?”

“I like surprises for other people the best,” Oshitari says. “Don't go all prissy on me.”

“I am not prissy,” Atobe says. “I am perfectly manly and mature about this significant change in my life.”

“Are you having a meltdown?” Oshitari asks, gleefully.

No,” Atobe says.

“Oh,” Oshitari says. “Damn. I need a partner. To hold somebody's hand during the Armageddon.”

“Yuushi,” Atobe says. “There is no Armageddon. We're just getting a year older. Calm down. I can't believe I'm telling you to calm down. Doesn't that tell you something?”

“Yes,” Oshitari says. “It does. How horrifying.”

“Are you calm?”

“Not now I'm not,” Oshitari says. “I'm turning into you.”

“Thanks,” Atobe says. “I am a glorious thing to turn into. You are very lucky.”

“Horrors,” Oshitari says.

“We're not going to Casablanca, are we,” Atobe says, a sudden feeling creeping down his arms.

“Ah, you shall see soon enough,” Oshitari says. “It is a secret, after all.”

“Oh, Christ,” Atobe says.




“Ryou,” Atobe says.

Shishido tries to put him on speaker-phone. It's too loud so Dog starts barking at the apparent voice of God in the study.

“Hang on,” Shishido says, trying to manhandle Dog away from his print-outs and out of the door. “Dog's gone nuts – speaker's too loud. Oh, fuck, hang on-”

“Ryou,” Atobe says. “I have an important meeting in five minutes. I don't have time to listen to Dog having a trauma. Unless that's you having a trauma, in which case-”

“Right, right, what,” Shishido says. “What do you want.”

“Do you know what's happening on my birthday?”

“Yep,” Shishido says. “Overnight you're going to develop a gut and grey hair and your face is going to start sliding off and you're going to-”

Ryou,” Atobe says.

“No,” Shishido says. “Yuushi won't tell me anything. Says I'll be bribed into giving the game away. I think Dog knows – do you want me to put him on?”

“He might be more use,” Atobe says. “How do you not know? Search the apartment. I want information.”

“Keigo,” Shishido says. “I have a job.”

“You're not working,” Atobe says. “You're playing with the dog.”

“I am not playing with the dog,” Shishido complains. “I'm trying to work. You come and search the apartment. Or hire a detective. Or have that secretary of yours come over. Is she wearing those hot shoes-”

Atobe hangs up.

When Shishido rings back, he ignores it.




The 'phone rings again, just as he gets back into his office.

“What?” he answers. “Ry-”

“This is your father,” Atobe's father says. Pointedly. Fatherly.

Shit, Atobe thinks.

“Oh,” Atobe says. “I'm sorry. I've just returned to the office. Difficult meeting.”

“Yes,” Atobe's father says. “The Americans are having a tough time of it.”

“Yes,” Atobe says.

“Your mother wishes to invite you for dinner tonight.”

“Okay,” Atobe says. “Tonight is fine.”

“I know you're going...on holiday,” Atobe's father continues, his tone suddenly cold. “This weekend, so I suggested tonight. It is short notice and not especially convenient, but as you insist on-”

“I'm quite busy,” Atobe says. “So I don't have time to discuss this now. Tonight is fine. Please apologise to my mother for the inconvenience. I hope she knows she can contact me at the office herself.”

“Women do not ring men at work,” Atobe's father says. “As you would know, if you had one.”

“Women are not possessions,” Atobe says, ratty from too many round with the American bankers. “And my mother can ring me at work if she wants to.”

“Your mother would feel better if you were married,” Atobe's father retaliates. “That way, she could call your wife instead.”

“As I said,” Atobe says. “I don't have time to discuss this now.”

“Are you still living with those boys?”

“Yes,” Atobe says. “My mother can contact Yuushi, if she wants to. She's always liked Yuushi.”

“Your mother does not possess good taste,” Atobe's father says.

“I agree,” Atobe says, and before his father can reply, adds, “I know you want me to get married. I know that that's part of your plan for me. But I am home for roughly half an hour a day and any woman I married would go stir-crazy with loneliness.”

“Your mother survived.”

“My mother is a class-act,” Atobe says. “As you know.”

“Yes,” Atobe's father says. “You think too much. Any woman would be proud to bear our surname.”

“That's not the point,” Atobe says.

“The point is that you're going to be thirty, unmarried and childless,” Atobe's father says. “People will wonder what's wrong with you. You're only lucky you're not a woman and your time doesn't run out. But every year you remain single is worth a chunk of our fortune, you understand that? By the time you want to get married, the best women will be gone and the ones left will have us for breakfast.”

“Did your father say this to you, when you were a kid?”

“I married at 23,” Atobe's father said. “You're not a kid and neither was I.”

“Did he say it?”

“Yes.”

“How did you feel?”

There's a long pause.

“Be home by six. Don't be late.”




Shishido is sitting on the kitchen bench, tying Atobe's tie. He's good with ties, surprisingly, for somebody with such clumsy hands. Oshitari is making dinner and supervising.

“Looks good,” he says. “Smart but not apologetic.”

“I'm not apologising,” Atobe smarts.

“Good for you,” Shishido says. “You should tell him you're marrying your secretary. We could all have a foursome.”

Atobe snorts, adjusting his cufflinks. “He doesn't know about there being two of us, let alone three. I think he'd have a heart attack.”

“You should let me come with you,” Oshitari says. “I shall be charming and distracting in equal measure.”

“You are not going anywhere near my mother,” Atobe says.

“I would not touch your mother,” Oshitari says. “Though she is beautiful, our love can never be-”

Shishido gives him a Look. “Don't fucking start this again,” he says, hopping down. “He's got to be calm when he goes over there. Not pissed off.”

“It's fine,” Atobe says. “Yuushi's not getting any sex for a while.”

Shishido starts to cackle, starts to air-punch, until Oshitari turns him around by the cooker and covers the back of his neck with kisses. Atobe watches, fascinated, because Oshitari is height and black hair and black eyes and long fingers and full of endless mystery – and Shishido is short, stocky, full of determination and fire and the hopelessness of a child. And Shishido squirms against Oshitari, his breath coming out like hard footsteps.

“Fuck off, Yuushi,” he groans, as his muscles go limp.




When Atobe returns, it's past one in the morning. Shishido is asleep, flat on his back. Oshitari can't sleep. Every so often he draws the curtain back and looks out at the stars, listens for a car beneath. Atobe doesn't drink when he goes to see his parents. He's learnt not to.

Atobe's eyes are dark and drawn when he walks into the room. He looks as though he's had to fight a thousand expressions off his face and Oshitari supposes that he has. He potters around in the bathroom for a bit and when he comes to bed and kisses Oshitari's mouth, there's toothpaste in his kiss. When Oshitari burrows his hands under Atobe's vest, his skin is warm. Atobe climbs into bed and onto Oshitari.

They lie still for some time. Oshitari knows that Atobe prefers lying on Shishido because Oshitari has bones, elbows and knees hard like diamonds. But he moves less and strokes Atobe's hair, so he has his benefits. He mutters things, things that Atobe can't quite hear or make sense of, things that strangely seem to soothe.

“Was it awful,” he mutters.

“Yes,” Atobe says. Then, “ngh. Your hands.”

Oshitari works a knuckle over the nape of Atobe's neck, which makes him shiver. He turns and considers swatting him – Oshitari can see the moment of contemplation in his eyes, but he doesn't do it. Atobe's not stupid. Oshitari runs his hands down Atobe's back, into the small, thumbs circling his hips. Atobe begins, slowly, to grind.

“Oh,” Oshitari says. “Can we have that. I'm not sure we can have that.”

“Shut up,” Atobe says.

“I thought you said I wasn't getting any sex,” Oshitari says. “That I've been very bad?”

“Shut up,” Atobe says.

“Hmmmm?” Oshitari says. “I'm not sure what you're asking for, Keigo. You'll have to be clearer.”

Atobe narrows his eyes, hard, and then leans it for a kiss that steals Oshitari's breath away. It's soft with bite, Atobe's lips like fruit, like fruit at its perfect moment, just there and ripe and good. Atobe runs his teeth over Oshitari's lips and Oshitari rubs the back of his skull.

“I see,” he says, smiling. “Well, in that case-”




With Shishido, Atobe is rough, wild. Shishido taps into a part of Atobe that Oshitari doesn't completely understand. The two of them seem to speak a different language. Animalistic, something deep within that Oshitari doesn't have. Shishido and Atobe are competitive over everything. They fight over the shower in the mornings, the cars, the answer-machine message. Usually, it ends well. Sexually, with hands in hair and jars going all over the kitchen floor. Oshitari likes that about them.

He doesn't understand what drives Atobe towards Shishido, towards competition – his own competitive instinct is rounded, softer. Only certain things, certain very important things, get Oshitari so riled up that he has to have them. Otherwise, he prefers life to be peaceful. Stressing makes him look ugly. And besides – Atobe does a lot of chasing. Oshitari doesn't mind being chased.

With Oshitari, Atobe seems calmer. Oshitari taps into a part of Atobe that Shishido doesn't completely understand. A need for civility, for romance, for nostalgia. For all of the awful films they've watched together and the ones they haven't, yet. Oshitari's need to bond is greater than Atobe's need to dig his nails into somebody and both of them understand that. With them, hands are around faces and Keigo goes all over the bed, spread out and kissed until he shakes and shakes. Oshitari likes that about them.

Shishido sleeps on, peacefully unaware. Atobe turns over and climbs up on top, lies down until he can feel Oshitari's heartbeat against his chest. Rolls his hips until Oshitari is gasping, until he's wrapping one set of fingers around Atobe's hipbone and slowly pulling him down.

“Oh, God, Keigo,” he mutters, never loud, never caustic. Just honey and milk. Just soft and dark and delicious. “You are so beautiful.”

Atobe would hit him if he didn't know, didn't feel the weight of Oshitari's heart in it. He lets Oshitari drive upwards, wrapping his arms around his neck and burrowing his head in Oshitari's throat.

“Tell me it's always going to be like this,” he whispers.

“Always,” Oshitari grunts. “Until we are all gnarled and unlovable.”




On the day of Atobe's birthday, Oshitari wakes up feeling no different from usual. This is probably because things are no different from usual – Atobe is bunched up against him and Shishido is pressing up against him. They're chasing each other into Oshitari, somehow. Oshitari taps Atobe's head and Atobe makes a pathetic angry noise.

“Hello thirty year olds,” Oshitari says. “From the twenty-something.”

“Shut up,” Shishido grunts. “What time is it.”

“Seven,” Oshitari says. “Time to get up.”

“No,” Atobe says, matter of factly, turning over in a betrayed sort of way and burrowing back into Shishido.

“Thirty years ago you'd been born by now, lazy bastard,” Oshitari says. “Get up.”

“Ten more minutes,” Atobe moans.

“Ryou,” Oshitari says, heading for the shower. “Wake him up, will you.”

“Mm,” Shishido says. “Yeah, whatever.”




When Oshitari comes out the shower, they're both fast asleep. Atobe is lying on Shishido, who is back to lying on his back, a little like Dog. Only Dog is sitting on the floor fluffing his tail up and down and looking faintly disapproving.

“Right,” Oshitari says. “No, I completely agree. I completely agree with you, Dog.”

He leans over the bed, takes the duvet clean off.

“Shower, now,” he says. “Both of you at once. I want you up and dressed and breakfasted by 10am. We have a long journey.”

Atobe squints, stretches his body so that Shishido grunts. Atobe smirks, a little coy look over his shoulder. Oshitari suddenly understands that showering is not going to make them clean. Atobe turns his face back to Oshitari, says, “so, we're going where?”

“Secret,” Oshitari says, gleefully. “I'm not that stupid. Go get washed. Then get washed again. Take the dog with you.”

Dog looks up, his tail starting to wag. “No, not you,” Oshitari says. “The other one.”




Oshitari walks the dog, loads up the car. Suitcases in the boot, food in the front. Dog in the back. When he walks back into the apartment, Atobe is wearing his shirt on his wet skin. It sticks and when he looks up, his eyes are dark and he's smiling and Oshitari feels like he did when they won the Nationals. When they were sixteen years old and knew everything and nothing.

Atobe tilts his head to one side. “You're thinking deep romantic thoughts, aren't you?”

“I was thinking about lunch,” Oshitari says, wolfishly.

Atobe smirks, saunters over. “Tell me where we're going,” he says.

“No,” Oshitari says, even as Atobe winds his arms around his neck and slides his chest against his.

“Please,” Atobe says, low and sexual and just ever so slightly submissive.

“No,” Oshitari says. “Are you on tiptoes?”

“No,” Atobe says, suddenly horrified. “No I am not.”

Shishido walks out of their bedroom wearing a gigantic sombrero. “Who's on tiptoes?”

“Mexico?” Atobe says.

“Mexico's on tiptoes?” Shishido says.

“No,” Oshitari says. “Atobe is.”

No,” Atobe says.

“Ole,” Shishido says.




They drive. Atobe sticks his head out of the window, looking for road signs.

“We're not going to the airport,” he says.

“No,” Oshitari says, cheerfully.

Priiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiime,” says Megatron.

Atobe goes still. “Ryou,” he says.

“It was Dog,” Ryou sniggers, from the back.

“Teenage son,” Oshitari says.

“Shut up,” Atobe says. “All of you. My father was right. I should've married some cold Russian princess who wouldn't collect Megatron toys or kidnap me on my birthday or mock me for being short.”

“Russians can be quite tall,” Oshitari says.

“And she might've liked Megatron,” Shishido says.

“And kidnapping,” Oshitari agrees.

“Shut up,” Atobe says.

“Arriba,” Shishido says.

“Can't we throw him out of the car?” Atobe says. “It's my birthday.”

“Afraid not,” Oshitari says. “Abandoning our son would seem neglectful.”




They drive for hours. Atobe eventually falls asleep, placated by food. Shishido falls asleep because he does, usually, on long car journeys. When they arrive, it's almost dusk and Atobe opens his eyes to pure, undiluted quiet.

“Oh God,” he says. “Where are we?”

“Why so afraid,” Oshitari says.

“Because you and quiet is sinister,” Atobe says. He looks out of the window and glances around. All around him are woods, deep and silent. And then in the middle, a giant lake with a surface so flat it looks like glass. Atobe slowly opens the door and steps out. The air is fresh, clean.

“God,” he says. “It's so quiet.”

“Home for the next few days,” Oshitari says. “It's not Casablanca, but it's something.”

“It's beautiful,” Atobe says. “I just want to read. And think. And-”

“Jet-ski,” Shishido says.

“Toast marshmallows,” Oshitari says.

“Absorb the quiet,” Atobe says.

“Abseiling,” Shishido says.

“Sleeping under the stars,” Oshitari says.

“Ghost stories,” Shishido says.

“Picnics,” Oshitari says.

“Sex,” Atobe says.

“Yep,” Shishido says.

“Yep,” Oshitari says.

They stand looking out at the lake, the three of them against the car, the dog circling their feet. Atobe breathes in, breathes out, and feels the whole world slipping away.




They set off too early for that morning's post. Atobe's mother sends him a separate card.

Keigo, it reads.

Hard to believe it's been thirty years, isn't it? Sometimes it seems like yesterday, sometimes it seems like a lifetime ago. I can still see every moment of your life, so clearly. You made me cherish my life – I hope that you know that. I hope that you can cherish your own life, too. Perhaps because you are so precious to your father and I, we expect so much of you, but please know that to make me happy, all you need do is be happy yourself.

Happy Birthday, and love, always.

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