Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Fanfiction - Doing the Math Part 2 -- DRRR Shizuo x Izaya

Doing the Math 2 – Durarara Shizuo x Izaya

by DL Warner

It was a short ride from the sinkhole to Anri's home, but it was almost too much for Shizuo. He was still whipped from the night before. He needed safe shelter and rest. The females taking care of him, however, had other ideas first. Celty texted ahead to make sure that the schoolgirl, Anri, was home and that all was ready. Shizuo sighed. They meant well, and he would soon be safe.

“Welcome, Shizuo-san,” Anri said as he struggled to get out of his shoes.

He grunted with a small bow which was enough to please the girl, it seemed.

“The bath is ready,” she continued as he was guided deeper in the house. It seemed the place was better furnished and decorated than before. There sure were thicker and longer towels folded up on the shelf in the bath. There was also a man's robe and a long night shirt.

“You shouldn't go through so much trouble,” Shizuo mumbled.

“It's no trouble,” she said. “Your last visit gave me a reason to make this place more livable.”

That seemed to mean that she expected him to return on occasion. In his weakened, fuzzy headed state, he couldn't think of an argument against that idea. After all, he had returned and only a few months after his first visit.

“I'll be back as soon as I can with the food,” Celty texted.

“Take all the time you need to be careful,” Shizuo said with quiet intensity. “I'm sure those fuckwads know we're friends. So take your time. Keep watching everything. I'm going to get clean, drink a lot of water and go to sleep.”

Celty nodded and was gone.

“I'll be nearby if you need anything,” Anri said while blushing deeply.

“Thank you, Anri-chan,” Shizuo managed. “Very much.”

The girl bowed as the blush grew deeper. She all but ran from the room. Shizuo set about peeling off his clothes. He was going to forego a full bath, but his skin felt itchy from the time spent in that cavern. He scrubbed down and rinsed off thoroughly but efficiently, so he could spend a bit of time relaxing in the tub. He sighed as the water lapped at the tops of his shoulders. The hot water made him feel every bruise, scrape and pull along his long body. The bath was a very good idea.

Shizuo sighed again as he sank onto the futon. He hadn't bothered with the robe since the soft, light weight nightshirt went well past his knees. Anri had been reading in the living room as Shizuo shuffled by with a weak wave. The schoolgirl had left a bottle of chilled water by one of the large futons. That bedroom had definitely been renovated since his last visit. There were two futons with thick mattresses and nice, soft blankets. He had almost half the large bottle of water before stretching out on the futon nearest the window and covering up. He quickly fell into a deep sleep.

A while later, Shizuo was unsure of how long, he was pulled from sleep. Someone was in the room. Anri had been through the room before, but she was always moving. First, she placed his phone nearby on a charger. She replaced the water bottle another time. She flitted through silently and swiftly, seeming to know that a lingering presence would wake him as this presence had. His face was being gently caressed next. The long fingers were gentle as they skimmed over his features then smoothed his hair. The touch was inquisitive more than affectionate. Still, Shizuo was not accustomed to anyone touching him in that intimate way. Then, he noticed a pleasant scent. It was the enticing aroma of asari ramen. Shizuo forced his heavy eyelids to open. His gaze fell upon Izaya who was seated on the futon very close to him. He looked at Shizuo with a challenge in his dark eyes.

Before he could voice his rapidly growing ire, he heard light footsteps running along the floorboards with the distinctive sound of a sword being unsheathed. Shizuo sat up as he put Izaya behind him with one arm.

“Anri-chan? Why are your eyes glowing red, and what's with the giant sword?” He asked in alarm. “Izaya won't hurt me! We have a truce.”

The red eyes were gone, but she merely lowered the sword a fraction. She did not stand down completely. Shizuo noticed her posture had changed as she gazed hard at Izaya. Maybe there was a lot more scary things about this girl for him than her boobs. It did begin to explain why Celty thought he'd be safe there.

“You do?” Anri asked suspiciously.

“Yes, for now,” Shizuo said. “You can check with Celty. Please.”

“Very well,” she said as she left the room.

“You were protecting me,” Izaya said quietly.

“I was keeping Anri-chan from making a mistake,” Shizuo countered mildly as he eased back onto his pillow. “She'd actually regret it. Why are you in my bed, Izaya?”

“Ah, well, it seemed that Namie Yagiri, my assistant, was more able than I thought,” he said ruefully. “She hacked well into my network and found even my most obscure safe house.”

“You left clever little clues about, didn't you?” Shizuo asked dryly as he had some water.

“Well, yeah...”

“She ran a big scientific place, didn't she?”

“Yeah, but...her father left her that,” Izaya muttered. “I didn't really think she had the chops.”

Izaya seemed to zone out a little looking at Shizuo. And then, he reached out to touch his face again. Shizuo didn't turn away. In an instant, he realized that the wiser course would be to let the man indulge. He closed his eyes and allowed the gentle, curious touch that lighted across his face.

“You do have long eyelashes,” Izaya murmured.

Shizuo frowned as he opened his eyes. “You do, too, you know? Do I smell ramen?”

“Really? Oh, I slipped into Russia Sushi on my way here,” he replied absently as he handed Shizuo the bag. “There's chopsticks and a soup spoon. Is there a mirror in here?”

“Thanks, and I don't know or care,” Shizuo replied amiably. He was still extremely tired, but the aroma of the soup roused him enough to get hungry while Izaya checked out his eyelashes in a wall mirror.

Anri seemed relieved to find them that way when she returned. Shizuo figured that she was glad they weren't fighting.

“Anri-chan, I was very much hoping to take refuge here with Shizuo for a time,” he said with a bow. “I can pay for some of the food.”

“You'll pay for everything,” Shizuo murmured between slurps. “She's on her own.”

“Of course,” Izaya said. “I would be delighted.”

“Thank you,” Anri said with a bow. “I've drawn a bath for you. Come this way. You should go back to sleep, Shizuo-san. You still look very tired.”

“No argument there,” he said as he had the last slurp from the take out container. “Thanks again, Izaya. We have to figure out how to get Russia Sushi to become a ramen house. I don't know....'night...”

Shizuo slid back under the warm blankets and fell deeply asleep once more. He was aware of Izaya's return some time later. After some soft words from Anri about water and calling if he needed anything, the room went quiet and still.

The next time he woke, the toilet was calling. Though he moved very carefully, Izaya still stirred in the next futon.

“Where you going?” he whispered.

“Toilet. Where the hell else?”

“Get me some more water?”

“Sure,” he replied, pulling on the robe. It was dusk and the room felt a lot cooler. Anri was reading as he passed by the front room the first time. She was talking with Celty when he passed by on the way back with the water.

“Hey,” Shizuo said. “How is everything going out there?”

“Is Izaya-san awake?” Anri asked. “You should both know about this plan.”

“Plan?” A soft voice asked from behind Shizuo. Izaya stood behind him pulling on a robe.

Shizuo pushed aside the thought that Izaya had been listening to him the whole time he was gone and went to sit next to Celty. It was easier to see her phone.

“Tom Tanaka's clients and some others think that the brains behind this move on you two will surface to try to lay down the new law if you don't turn up soon,” Celty typed.

“He's right,” Izaya murmured. “The attack on us was designed to take us down fast. That means they have a plan to move in on the big players in Ikebukuro fast. Luckily, no one saw me at my safe house. They didn't know how to stay hidden very well.”

“As far as they know, they succeeded and we're rotting in the sewer,” Shizuo said.

“Exactly,” Celty typed. “You can take advantage of this belief and find out who is behind this.”

“I'd like to know whose face I'm going to bash in,” Shizuo agreed quietly.

“As would I,” Izaya agreed. “What do we do?”

The women fixed their focus on Izaya as Celty typed.

“You must get along quietly for another 24 hours – maybe as long as 48,” Celty typed. She shoved the image at Izaya forcefully, startling the man.

“Why is everyone looking at me? I don't throw vending machines!” He snapped irritably.

“You have my word that I'll keep my cool,” Shizuo said, seeking and holding Izaya's gaze. “I may sleep most of that entire time. Besides, we need to be able to hear anyone coming up on us. We can't do that fighting.”

“No, we can't,” Izaya agreed quietly. “I'll watch over you while you sleep, Kohai.”

Anri's eyes grew huge, but Shizuo chuckled. “I guess that's progress. What else do we need to do?”

“Celty thinks and I agree that I should go to school tomorrow and do what I normally do,” Anri said. “Everyone known to know either of you is being closely observed. But you may need something while I'm gone...”

“I can't be seen here too often,” Celty typed.

“Simon can fill in for a run,” Izaya suggested with a smile. “He makes deliveries, he'd know if someone was tailing him, and he'd keep leading them back to Russia Sushi for the business.”

Shizuo laughed softly at that thinking of how frustrating that would be. Izaya smiled at him, obviously delighting in their shared mischief.

“You can send Erika and Walker on their own,” Shizuo said thoughtfully. “They're too weird for anyone to follow for long. They'd also know if anyone was following them. No telling where's those poor suckers would be lead by them.”

“We just have to make sure we aren't making out when they arrive,” Izaya said huskily. “It would be all over Ikebukuro in no time flat.”

“Tell them that you're kidding,” Shizuo sighed. “Please...Senpai...”

Izaya blinked back his surprise then smiled with his usual sly smile.

“There's nothing to say,” Izaya said easily. “The ladies already know that I'm full of shit.”

Shizuo rolled his eyes causing Anri to smile a small smile.

“Yeah, right. How about we eat and do some planning while I'm awake?” Shizuo said. “Can you stay a little while, Celty?”

Celty nodded. The next thing Shizuo knew, he was seated at the kitchen table with the Dulahan while Anri and Izaya cooked the meal. He had had stranger days in his life but not that many.

“Izaya-san cooks?” Celty typed.

Shizuo shrugged. He would have never have believed it, but there he was chopping vegetables for curry while Anri washed the rice.

“So, you can cook?” Shizuo asked.

“I wondered if you'd say anything,” Izaya murmured though he never stopped working. “I had to cook or my sisters and I wouldn't eat.”

“His sisters!” Celty typed with urgency. “Won't they be worried? Are they even safe?”

“Celty, Izaya-san's sisters would never believe that some hose-heads could take us out,” Shizuo assured her. “And they can more than take care of themselves.”

“We could end this in bloody fashion immediately by turning them loose on these assholes,” Izaya said quietly as he began to stir fry the chopped vegetables. “But now, I want them to suffer at my hands.”

Anri set the dishes out within Izaya's reach and then addressed the tea kettle. Each seemed very content in their tasks and enjoying the goings on at that moment. Shizuo paid attention to everything Celty was texting, but he also watched Izaya carefully. He'd never had such an opportunity before. Shizuo watched incredulously as Izaya not only plated their meal like a restaurant chef, he also made a bento for Anri's lunch, winked at her and got her to smile.

Izaya ended up opposite Shizuo at the table. Though it seemed that he was riveted on Celty's accounts of the last few hours, Shizuo knew he was aware of his and Anri's first bites and their reaction to the food.

“This is good curry,” Shizuo said quietly. Anri agreed. Izaya smiled. They then got down to business.

“I can give you no more than another 24 to 36 hours,” Izaya said. “Beyond that, some of my less than loyal associates will join the rebellion and make matters even worse than they are.”

“Same here,” Shizuo said. “Tom's business will go into the toilet without my...influence.”

“He said as much,” Celty typed. “When should we send people to check on you?”

“Noon and three I'd say,” Izaya replied. “Then, you can bring ingredients for supper in the evening, Celty.”

“Okay,” she typed.

“No one comes into my house,” Anri said. “You'll be safe until you're ready to go as long as you stay quiet and out of sight.”

“We will,” Shzuo said confidently. “When we leave, we'll take to the roofs, so no one can tell where we came from.”

“Thank you,” Anri said with a bow.

“Let me help with the dishes,” Shizuo said.

“No, Shizuo-san,” Anri said. “You still look exhausted.”

“You do,” Celty typed. “It's too soon for you.”

Shizuo nodded. “Yeah. I'm gonna crash. Thanks and good night.”

He heard Anri banish Izaya from the kitchen as well. By the time he was back under the covers in the cool, dark room, Izaya was in the room as well and closing the door.

“Shizuo,” he said quietly. “I need to be on the same futon as you.”

“Why?!” Shizuo demanded tiredly.

“I throw very sharp knives, as you know,” he explained. “I need to know where you are in the room should that become necessary in the dark.”

That actually made sense. Shizuo turned on his side facing the window.

“I don't want to wake up with you on top of me,” he muttered.

“Fair enough. Do you mind if I work on my laptop for a while?”

“Long as you haven't planted clues everywhere pointing here,” Shizuo murmured.

Izaya laughed softly. “I will be a ghost that no one will recognize. Goodnight.”

He felt Izaya settle down next to him. It remained a puzzle to him that he was so comfortable with this man who was still trying to kill him just last week. That laugh didn't even grate on his nerves.

“Goodnight, Izaya.”

He drifted off to sleep listening to Izaya tapping away at the laptop. Sometime later, he was aware of the room going completely dark with the shutting off of the computer. Izaya was close to him but not unduly close. Shizuo slipped back into a comfortable sleep. He got in hours of the best kind of deep, deep sleep before thirst nagged him awake. Izaya was not on top of him. He was wrapped around him. One arm was around his waist. His head was resting between Shizuo's shoulder blades.

“Well, he sort of listened,” Shizuo thought with a sigh. He didn't think Izaya was trying to irk him. The man was still fast asleep. He was probably seeking warmth. Shizuo managed to have a deep drink of water from the chilled bottle by the futon and settle back to go to sleep without jarring his bedmate awake. As Izaya nuzzled him, Shizu made a note to extra kill the fuckwads that got him into that situation.

Morning sunlight was seeping beneath the blackout drapes when he next awoke. Izaya was stirring. Shizuo heard him chuckle softly as he gently disengaged from his sleeping position. He gently caressed Shizuo's hair before quietly leaving the room. Shizuo rose a short time after that as he smelled coffee and something tasty cooking.

“Ohayou Gozaimasu,” Shizuo murmured as he tied his robe. Izaya was cooking while Anri was eating.

“Ohayou, Gozaimasu, Shizuo-san,” Anri said brightly.

“Grab some coffee,” Izaya said. “Breakfast is almost ready.”

“Thanks,” he murmured. “Smells great.”

“It tastes great,” Anri said. “You didn't need to do this.”

“Yes, I did,” Izaya said. “You need a good breakfast to study, and Shizuo needs one to be less homicidal.”

“That's a theory,” Shizuo said as he sipped his coffee. He couldn't help but smile at how much he and Izaya were amusing the schoolgirl.

The plate Izaya set before him was amazing. There were rolled egg crepes to go with a nice piece of fried fish and rice.

“Hmmm, nice,” Shizuo murmured happily. “Thank you for the food.”

Izaya nodded. “Eat up.”

“Excuse me,” Anri said. “I must finish getting ready for school.”

“Of course,” Izaya said.

“Sure thing,” Shizuo added.

He and Izaya ate in silence for a time. Shizuo wanted to enjoy the food uninterrupted for as long as he could. He was almost finished before the first question popped into his head.

“What did your ghost find out on the net?”

“These guys aren't net savvy at all,” Izaya said. “It's just the regular denizens chattering away about the take over attempt. Everyone save for those closest to us thinks we're dead. The sink hole flooded some time after Celty got us out.”

“Wow, that was kind of lucky,” Shizuo said giving him a sidelong look.

“Yeah, lucky,” Izaya laughed. “Those who think we're dead want to fight off any outsiders coming in.”

“That'll help when we turn up,” Shizuo said as he finished off his plate.

“How are you healing?”

“Another day will help,” Shizuo said. “But I'm ready to kick ass now, if necessary. Are you bored?”

“No. I've been watching Yagiri-san slowly panic about my returning. She is far too smart to think I'm gone,” Izaya replied. “And I'm looking for new safe houses to rent that no one will know about and that are this nice.”

“Yeah,” Shizuo sighed. “I'm re-thinking my place as well.”

“Hmmm,” Izaya murmured before he smiled. “Besides, how can I be bored sharing a bedroom with you?”

Shizuo raised a brow at him. “Tell me you aren't watching me sleep.”

“No, that would be boring. You hardly ever move,” Izaya chuckled. “The idea of what everyone would think of me sharing a bedroom with you is endlessly entertaining.”

“Freak,” Shizuo murmured amiably. “Let me do the dishes this time.”

“The women folk have left their orders,” Izaya said ruefully. “Your job is to rest those amazing bones and defend our honor.”

Shizuo was going to say something profane, but Anri was in the room with books in hand. She still worried about leaving them.

“Stay back from the windows and be very quiet until we walk away. Masaomi and Mikado are very curious, and I am so dull and predictable,” she said with a blush. “I'll text you if anything keeps me later than expected. Simon-san will be here around noon.

“Anri, your strength is in your willingness to stay in the shadows,” Shizuo said quietly. “You've saved us both this time.”

“He's right, Anri-chan,” Izaya said. “Never underestimate your personal strength.”

She bowed before them before scurrying down the hall. Before Izaya could address the dishes, they heard the front door open. Her young friends could be heard outside.

“I think I should be close to the door to make sure it's locked,” Izaya whispered.

Shizuo glared at him incredulously. “Stay where you are, idiot.”

“No, I really think...”

Before he could think about it, Shizuo's hand shot out and grabbed Izaya by the wrists. He pulled the man into his lap and held him firmly, but the battle was far from over. Izaya was still struggling and could say something loudly enough to be heard outside at any second. Shizuo didn't want to escalate the struggle with a long day and night ahead of him, but he had to keep the troublemaker quiet. The calculations went through his brain faster than he could really focus on what it all meant. As always, he simply acted.

Shizuo grabbed Izaya by the hair at the back of his head, tilting his head back while bringing his shoulders up. The kiss was more fierce than the first they shared. Shizuo was exasperated and annoyed to be in that situation. Izaya was startled and quickly melting. When he moaned into the kiss, Shizuo gently ended it, resting his forehead against Izaya's.

“Why?” Izaya asked softly.

“I did the math,” Shizuo replied. “It was the fastest, most effective way of keeping you quiet.”

“You ran the math? What was that like? How does a not gay guy decide it's best to kiss a man to silence him?”

“I ran that part of it, but there was our safety to think of. I also didn't want you to think I was trying to hurt you physically,” Shizuo said. “And one part of me thought was I afraid that a kiss or two would suddenly make me gay. Then, one part was daring the other.”

“And no one pushes you around,” Izaya smiled.

“Damned straight. Not even me,” Shizuo said dryly. “But I was worried about doing this.”

“You really thought I could turn you gay?”

“No,” Shizuo replied patiently. “I didn't want you to think I was using your feelings to get my way.”

“How did you get around that?”

“I made sure you enjoyed the kiss,” Shizuo replied simply. “I wanted you to know that being this close is kind of nice.”

Izaya took that in for a moment. “Did you really do the math about throwing vending machines at me?”

“You don't have my bones,” he shrugged. “Something that heavy should have squished you.”

“I miscalculated with you,” Izaya smiled. “Delicious. But you have been thinking a lot this morning, my Kohai. I'm told that dealing with me is exhausting.”

Shizuo smiled ruefully. “More so than chasing you through the streets.”

“Go back to sleep. I'll make sure we're locked down and do the dishes,” Izaya murmured. “But for messing with my feelings, I want another kiss.”

Shizuo rolled his eyes before lowering his head. That kiss was more gentle, but Izaya moaned again before Shizuo finally released him.

He didn't think about what had happened. It had to be done. Struggling with Izaya could have easily turned into a vicious fight in a room with too many knives. The way his mortal enemy melted in his arms told him his course of action was sound. Shizuo only hoped that Izaya understood that while he hadn't minded the kiss, he was not ready for anything more. Sleep came quickly, and he slept deeply. It was such a deep sleep, he didn't realize that Izaya had returned to the bedroom. He was gently shaking him.

“Shizuo...wake up...”

“Hmmm? What's wrong? Why are you dressed?”

“You can't know how sexy that question sounds from you in that deep, sleepy Shizuo voice,” Izaya smiled. “Simon will be here soon. I thought it best if we were dressed when visitors came.”

That was a good idea. Aside from not wanting Erika to see them in matching nightshirts, something could go wrong during either visit that could force them to run. His clothes were neatly folded on top the dresser. He stumbled to the bathroom and and pulled the nicely cleaned uniform on without putting on the tie. Izaya was already at the end of the sofa working on his laptop. Shizuo reclined on the rest of it. He felt Izaya cover him with a light blanket a short while later.


“Don't mention it.”

“I won't,” Shizuo murmured affably.

Izaya chuckled while patting Shizuo's exposed ankle. He left the hand there occasionally as he worked. It was only a short bit of time passed before Izaya was suddenly alert. Shizuo sensed that and sat up silently.

“Yeah?” Shizuo barked.

“Delivery from Russia Sushi,” came Simon's muffled voice.

“Oooh, lunch!” Izaya said while he bounded out of the living room.

By the time Shizuo rose, stretched languidly and ambled into the kitchen, Simon was inside dwarfing everything in the room.

“Did you have any trouble?” Izaya asked.

“I had company for first few times I leave,” Simon replied. “I lead them back to Russia Sushi for the lunch special.”

“How many were there?” Shizuo asked.

“A whole counter full,” Simon replied brightly. “Chef not let them leave until plates are clean.”

“Thanks for this, Simon,” Shizuo said with a chuckle.

“You my best customers but never together,” Simon remarked giving them the once over. Shizuo noticed that Izaya had drifted within reach of him once more, and they were at ease with each other that close.

“We have a truce,” Shizuo explained. “And Izaya's safe houses weren't safe, so he came to stay with me.”

“I find I like his company,” Izaya added. “He's really great at math.”

“And Izaya is a comedian,” Shizuo quipped.

“You two have Glasnost finally! I'm very happy,” Simon smiled before crushing them both in a bear hug.

Shizuo was a little wobbly when Simon set him back on his feet, so he sat down while Izaya pulled out bowls and put on the tea.

“Something smells great, Simon,” Izaya said. “It's ramen but different from Asari.”

“Yes, Chef included our staff meal today which is like Sapporo style with pork and chicken broth,” Simon said with a smile. “And lots of toppings! Also, special dragon sushi.”

“Yes!” Shizuo sighed.

Izaya uncovered the take out with keen interest. Then, he smiled.

“A work of art, Simon,” he said. “Thank the chef for us.”

“I will,” Simon said as he packed up to go. “When will we see you at the restaurant?”

“Tomorrow afternoon,” Shizuo said.

“We may be just running past, but you'll see us,” Izaya said. “Maybe you could bring us something to snack on in the park and don't make a secret about who you're delivering to.”

“That works,” Shizuo said with a grin.

“Good, good,” Simon said. “And you keep with your Glasnost after these pests have gone. You look very happy together.”

Shizuo almost choked on the soup he was enjoying.

“Eat slowly, my friend. Good day.”

And he was gone. Izaya followed to lock the door. Shizuo was enjoying his ramen when he returned. They ate in silence for a time. It was surprising to Shizuo that Izaya could be so quiet for so long.

“It took me a long time and a lot of manipulation and fights and bribes – you name it – to build the network I had at school,” Izaya said quietly. “I needed a network that would follow me into adulthood, so I could make a living. I also needed to protect myself and my sisters. Somehow, I knew that being a salaryman was not in the cards for me.”

Shizuo smiled at that, but he said nothing.

“Everything was perfect, and then the news broke about you coming to school,” he said ruefully. “It was only natural that everyone wondered if someone as strong as you could take me down. And then came predictions that my days were numbered.”

“I never knew anything about that,” Shizuo said quietly.

“That didn't matter,” Izaya countered softly. “You arrival meant I would be challenged. And then I saw how good looking you were. I knew all the females – both students and teachers – could be on your side. I had to destroy you or make you look like an out of control monster.”

Shizuo thought about that for a little while. There were things Izaya was not saying like how he needed that network to protect a short and slight loner from everything that could befall him and his sisters in Ikebukuro. Ironically, he was the type that Shizuo would have protected if given the chance.

“Why are you telling me this?” Shizuo asked as he finished his ramen.

“We have shared a bed for basically 24 hours,” Izaya replied. “Since the truce, you have slept near me with absolute ease knowing that I'm armed. You have trusted me in a way I couldn't have ever imagined.”

Shizuo nodded though he didn't see it that way. The truce was a logical tact for them to take. There was absolutely no gain in going back on it when they needed each other to live through their predicament. But he accepted the confession and felt better about their past having a logical explanation.

“Thank you for telling me,” Shizuo said. “It does make a difference.”

Izaya was very happy. He stood to do the dishes once again. He also noticed Shizuo discomfort.

“You can do the dishes the next time we're holed up. That is, if you remain unhurt,” Izaya said happily.

“We can't keep imposing on this girl,” Shizuo muttered.

“I know,” Izaya said. “Her friends are clever. They also speak before thinking about who might be around to hear them.”

“Where do you think we should go,?” Shizuo asked wondering why he was including Izaya, but it made the man happy.

“Do you remember the sex toy warehouse?” Izaya asked with a demonic smile.


“The owner had an amazing apartment on the top floor of that building for him and his mistress to meet,” Izaya continued with glee. “Until wifey found out and took him for everything in the divorce. I bought the building for a song months ago under one of my legit holding companies. I just remembered that apartment this morning. I've had a cleaning company from Tokyo clean it out and a maid service replace the linens and stock the place in every way I could think of.”

“What about your assistant?”

“She knows nothing about those holding companies. No one in Ikebukuro does,” Izaya said. “They are under layers of businesses out of Tokyo.”

“Why have those businesses at all?”

“Insurance against problems,” he replied simply. “There should always be a mix of money coming in both legit and not so much. The place is now a jobber for Okatu crap. The entrance to the apartment is off the back alley. A private elevator goes to the top floor. No one sees who comes or goes.”

“Makes sense. How is security once inside?” Shizuo asked as they made their way back to the living room.

“Cameras are everywhere and there are feeds in every room. There are great alarms that will lock off the elevator and the stairs for anyone not carrying the key chip. And we have a fail safe escape to three nearby roofs.”

“Access to the apartment from these roofs?”

“Six foot fences that we can bring down with one lever pull,” Izaya said. “It was meant to keep private eyes from getting proof of an affair,” Izaya chuckled.

“How did the dip shit get caught?”

“Cheated on the mistress, so she spilled to the wife,” he laughed.

Shizuo took up his spot on the sofa with Izaya at the end.

“Idiot,” he yawned. “How do I get this chip?”

“Celty will have yours with her tonight,” Izaya replied.


It was a nice gesture on the lizard's part in Shizuo's opinion. But he really hoped he would be able to just go to his home the next day. He was nearly at full strength. Undoubtedly, his impatience with Izaya's endless game playing would strain them if they continued to stay together in such close quarters. Or maybe that wasn't what worried him at all. Shizuo didn't want to think about how he didn't mind this Izaya so close to hm. He didn't feel the need to pull the foot away from the hand resting warmly on it when Izaya wasn't using the mouse. He really didn't want to think about why he didn't mind him so close when they slept. But what was there to fear from this Izaya? Maybe if Shizuo offered his friendship the way Tom had bravely done in school for him, he wouldn't feel the need to be such a sadistic monster – at least, not be one all the time.

Izaya was quiet and mostly still through the afternoon. He left once or twice, but never for long. There was very cold water within reach when Shizuo sat up shortly before their next delivery was due.

“I'm sorry you're stuck watching me sleep,” he muttered.

Izaya smirked. “I don't mind. My work is getting done. Do you usually sleep so much?”

“No,” Shizuo chuckled. “I'm on call with Tom 24/7. I only get a few hours on any given night or day. I really only sleep like this when I'm hurt. I guess I'm catching up on all that I missed.”

“Will you go back to those hours after we dispatch our little problem?”

Shizuo's brow went up. Why in the fuck would he care? But then, they did have a lot of time to kill.

“Not right away,” Shizuo replied with a wry smile. “After I go majorly berserk, Tom's customers usually cough up with no problem. My hours are normal for at least a week. Doesn't matter though. My building is loud until late, late at night.”


“I've been saving for a new place.”

Izaya took that in quietly. And while he was quiet and still and attentive, Shizuo needed to get something important really clear.

“Winding up Erika can be fun, but she's not exactly discreet when she's losing her shit over us,” Shizuo said quietly. “I once heard her shrieking 'bottom top bottom top' for blocks. So...behave.”

Izaya laughed with great glee. “Behave, huh? What do I get if I behave?”

Shizuo was going to say that he wouldn't get a punch in the face, but this was truce time. Instead, Shizuo looked at him levelly.

“What do you want?”

“I want you to tell me why it's so wrong to make out with me until you make me hard,” Izaya murmured. “And why you don't want anyone to know that you could bring yourself to touch me without hurting me.”

His voice was soft, but a hardness had returned to his eyes that Shizuo didn't like. He found himself reaching out to grasp his hair at the nape of the neck.

“I don't think it's wrong or I wouldn't have done it,” Shizuo said with an edge of his own. “I'm trying to wrap my head around what's happening here. I don't think we need everyone else's opinion or perversions in the mix while we sort this, okay?”

“You said we twice in the same sentence,” Izaya said softly. “That really makes me hard.”

“Will you shut up?”

“Make me...hmmm...”

That kiss was even hotter than any before. Izaya seemed to like being held down. God damn if he wasn't messing with his head and his body. Shizuo found that he was hard. Damn him to hell! The doorbell ringing broke them apart. Shizuo felt as wild to get at him as any day they fought. Izaya looked as ready to take him on.

“I'll get the door,” Izaya said hoarsly. “I'll be careful.”

Shizuo nodded as he let him go.

“You'd better put a blanket over your lap,” Izaya smiled as he headed toward the door.

“I won't need to, fucker,” Shizuo snapped but without his usual heat as Izaya chuckled.

“Are you guys decent? Shizuo heard Erika ask breathlessly.

“When have we ever been decent?” Izaya asked.

“Really?” She all but squealed before nearly exploding into the room. Needless to say, she was very disappointed to find Shizuo having a sip of water while half reclined on the sofa.

“Have a seat,” Shizuo said. “Thanks for coming by.”

“Did you have any trouble?” Izaya asked.

“We were followed,” Walker said as he set a large paper bag on the table. “They couldn't keep up, and they didn't know the neighborhood.”

“We lost them easy,” Erika said. “The idiots thought we went into Kagami-san's house.”

“The cat lady?” Shizuo asked. A smile tugged at his lips.

“Yep,” Walker laughed. “Those jerks are probably still dodging flying cats!”

Izaya laughed heartily as he flopped next to Shizuo who did not move to distance himself. Erika noticed the ease with Izaya's closeness, but she kept talking.

“We've tagged all of their vehicles,” she said with a cackle. “Give the word and we take them out.”

“When is the meeting set with the bosses?” Izaya asked.

“It'll be dark by 4, so Tom set it for 4:30 at the Club,” Walker replied.

“We'll show up in the park just after that,” Izaya said.

“We want the sharks to be inside when word gets out that we're back,” Shizuo added. “Take out all but one vehicle.”

“There won't be that many leaving,” Izaya said with an evil smile.

“Awesome,” Walker exclaimed. “It'll be great having you guys back. All sorts of freaks have been coming out of the woodwork trying to be bad asses without you two around.”

“Great, are we going to be fighting more than one group of assholes?” Shizuo demanded.

“What do you think?” Izaya asked.

“Balls,” Shizuo muttered. “What kind of snacks are in the bag?”

“Onigiri and some soft drinks,” Erika replied. “Celty is buying a bunch of groceries for someone to cook, so we thought we'd bring something light.”

“Nice,” Shizuo murmured as he opened the bag. “Thanks. Pay them, Izaya. You still have my money.”

“What?!” Erika asked with excitement.

“He robbed me while we were in that hole,” Shizuo explained. “You want pineapple or strawberry soda?”

“I was pooling our resources and strawberry.”

“We don't need any money,” Walker said. “Tom paid us and gave Kadota-san some cash.”

“Where is he?” Izaya asked.

“He and Togusa-san are going to meet us a couple of blocks from here,” Erika replied.

“You should leave through the bedroom window,” Izaya said. “You can take the roofs to just about where he'll be and see if anyone is looking for you.”

Erika all but bit her tongue while whipping her head at Walker.

“Good idea. I'm sure those jizzbags are well and truly pissed at us,” Walker said. “Lead on.”

“Don't eat all my onigiri,” Izaya said almost playfully.

“Don't take too long, then.”

It all seemed to go well. Shizuo didn't actually hear Erika squeal until she was quite a ways from the house. By then, Izaya was seating himself again. He met Shizuo's curious gaze.

“I forgot that our night shirts and robes were folded up next to each other on the bed,” he explained.

Sizuo rolled his eyes. “I guess it could have been worse.”

“She saw enough,” Izaya said ruefully. “We should have been more uncomfortable on the same sofa. But don't worry. I told Walker to keep her close and quiet until we turn up tomorrow.”

“It's okay,” Shizuo said. “It'll be fine.”

Izaya nodded before tucking into their snack. They made short work of it, saving one for Anri, before quickly cleaning up. Shizuo followed Izaya into the kitchen while he made tea.

“Izaya,” he said quietly. “We can't go any further while we're here. It isn't fair to Anri or to us.”

Izaya raised his brows at that.

“Why not fair?”

Shizuo leaned against the door frame. “You know how we fight. We're all over the place, we make a lot of noise and we break things. How do you think we'd fuck?”

Izaya laughed at that. Then, he smiled sinfully.

“I don't think I'll be able to move too much with you holding me down, but I get your point,” he said. “I can wait. It'll make my fighting all the more vicious for having to.”

“I'm going to extra special kill them,” Shizuo said quietly though he smiled.

“Speaking of killing,” Izaya said as he put on the kettle. “How do you want to handle the fight? We've never fought together. I don't want to get in your way, and I don't want you in mine.”

“Not having cars will take away their long range advantage with their guns,” Shizuo said thoughtfully. “They have to come into the park after us. I plan to have something long and metal to knock them on their asses then disarm them. I think we'll have some help with that and some others bringing weapons.”

“What we'll need is some full blown Shizuo rage,” Izaya said. He was light in tone but serious expression. “Their muscle won't be used to that kind of rage and power from one man. You can scare them and badly.”

“That will make them careless,” Shizuo murmured. “Good.”

“Can you get your rage on?” Izaya asked. “You've been very mellow these last couple of days.”

“I am like that kettle of water, always just a few degrees from boiling over,” Shizuo replied easily. “One of them will do something to piss me off and all the anger from the past few days will come back. I don't like being chased into sewers or kept from my job or kept away from everything. I don't mind any of this between us or the sleep, but none of it was on my terms.”

“Well said. And I feel the same,” Izaya said. “They make me want to throw a vending machine or two. But I can't regret all of it either.”

His voice had gone sensual. Shizuo gave him a cautioning look.

“Don't worry. I'll behave,” he chuckled. “Do you want tea? Dinner will take a while.”

“Sure, What are you going to make?”



“It's been nice to cook again. I'll do it more often if I'm not alone,” he replied softly. “And that apartment is very quiet. A whole empty floor separates it from the jobber business.”

“You go all in, don't you?” Shizuo murmured.

“So do you, Shizuo-san.”

Anri arrived just as Izaya was filling the teapot with hot water. She looked happy to see them though a little flustered.

“I'm sorry I'm a little late,” she said. “I swear Masaomi can read minds. It took all my excuses and finally Mikado from having him walk me home.”

“I'm not surprised,” Izaya murmured. “He's a clever lad. I made you some tea, and we saved some onigiri for you. You relax while I wash the rice.”

“Thank you, Izaya-san! This is so thoughtful!”

“I can do thoughtful, and Shizuo-san can do math.”

“Huh?” Anri asked.

“Don't mind him. He's got cabin fever,” Shizuo said to Anri. He looked up at Izaya. “Shut. Up. Senpai.”

Izaya chuckled, turning back to the rice. Anri enjoyed her tea and snack while chatting about Shizuo's condition. Before they could get too far, Celty arrived. She had hidden her motorcycle because she'd been followed for a good part of the trip there from the market. She was very concerned about their weaponry which was considerable and that they had recruited some local talent that may be overlooked until they were too close to stop.

Izaya's reaction was to have Anri help him put together the tonjiru. Shizuo sat a very upset Celty down and told her about the plan they put together with the Scoobies.

“We have eyes all over the place watching these ass wipes since they first turned up,” Shizuo said.

“I have people who are gathering info on the traitors,” Izaya said. “They think it's for some heavily connected Tokyo broker like me. No one will be getting the drop on us. You, Tom, Kadota-san and the Scoobies will know every face that is a danger to us.”

“Can I see those faces, too?” Anri asked. “Just in case they are watching me and my friends.”

Izaya nodded at Anri with a smile. “Of course. I'll send them to your phone, so you have them with you. I'll send them to you as well, Celty. Help us, if you can.”

“That sounds dangerous, Shizuo frowned.

“They won't take any chances,” Izaya said. “Both of you take care. We need to be only worried about our own fight, got it?”

The females nodded enthusiastically. The room relaxed a bit as the smells of the stew filled the air. Celty fretted about having that motorcycle squad chase her. Izaya informed her that there would be a tractor trailer container near the park that she can hide in to give the cops the slip.

Celty pulled out a padded envelop next and handed it to Shizuo. Inside were three identical devices that looked like electronic car keys that were half the size and flatter on smooth necklace length chains.

“Izaya, are these the safe house chips?” Shizuo asked.

“Yeah. The red button opens doors. The little lock symbol locks them,” he said as he plucked one from Shizuo's hand and put the chain around his neck. “One for you and the third is for Celty. I thought it might be good to have another safe house across town from here. We don't want to push our luck with your safety, Anri-chan.”

“Oh, thank you,” she murmured while blushing. “But I don't mind the company, and I really can handle myself.”

“We aren't saying that we won't ever be back,” Shizuo said ruefully as he put on the necklace then hid it under his shirt. “I know my luck with finding trouble. We just want to make sure that no one finds out about your helping out this way, so we can come back and still feel that you and we are safe.”

“Thank you. I understand,” the girl murmured.

“Celty, you can bring your motorcycle into the entrance and onto the elevator,” Izaya said.

That made the Dulahan happy. She put the necklace on and hid it as well. Dinner was as weirdly fun as the night before. It seemed more like a party after the most recent intel was discussed. Izaya was very amusing and not in a scary way. The females were very tickled by him, and he basked in the attention. Much of his antics were aimed at Shizuo. He was trying to entertain him and pull him closer. It was obvious to Shizuo but didn't seem so to Celty. That was good, because they needed her friendship. And Shizuo liked her. But she got freaked out by the thought of him with Izaya. Shizuo had stopped wondering why he wasn't freaked out by him and Izaya. He was going on instinct with the man. It was all he had.

After dinner, Shizuo was banished from the kitchen again. He walked Celty to the door. She had smokes for him and some final worries.

“Take care with Izaya,” she typed. “He could be playing a game with you.”

“I know,” Shizuo smiled. “I find I know him better than I realized. I'll be fine. See you at quarter past four. Thanks for the cigarettes.”

Celty nodded before carefully slipping out of the door. Shizuo considered going out on the roof for a smoke, but he opted for a soak in the tub. He really had no idea where he would be twenty-four hours from then. And it was a really nice tub. His aches weren't as pronounced as the first time in the hot water. It all felt really good. He could still hear Izaya and Anri in the kitchen when he climbed into bed.

He dozed for a while propped up on pillows. Anri brought them cold water before saying good night. And then Izaya was leaning over him.

“Were you waiting up for me?”

“Hmm? Yeah....seemed wrong to just go to sleep when you were cleaning the kitchen.”

“Seemed wrong?” Izaya asked softly. “What seemed right to you?”

Shizuo reached up to grasp Izaya's hair at the back of his head. It was a gentle, sleepy couple of kisses that made Izaya sigh.

“Goodnight, Senpai,” Shizuo murmured as he slid down the mattress to lie flat on the mattress. “Your work won't bother me, so go ahead.”

Shizuo heard Izaya chuckle to himself before he gently pulled back the blankets.

“Damned if you don't have me seizing the moment and ignoring the close on Wall Street,” he muttered. “Let me in.”

Shizuo allowed him to rest his head on his chest. He held him lightly, resting his chin on the soft, dark hair. He didn't wonder about why that all felt right.

Anri's alarm stirred them just as dawn broke. Shizuo squeezed his bedmate to make sure he was awake.
“Come on...we have to have breakfast with Anri,” he murmured.

“Right...” Izaya said, sitting up. He looked toussled and amused in the weak morning light. “I sleep well this way, Shizuo. I'd prefer not to go without it.”

“Good morning, Senpai,” Shizuo countered softly before kissing him gently until he sighed. “Relax. I don't plan on getting this wrong. If we get this wrong, one or both of us will be dead.”

Izaya raised his brows with a huff of breath. “True enough. Come on, I'm hungry.”

“I'm going to miss these meals,” Anri said. “Not just the food but the company. You guys are funny together.”

“That's a new word for it,” Shizuo said ruefully.

“You needn't wait for us to return to have nice meals with company,” Izaya said. “Invite your young friends to breakfast or dinner. I'm sure they'd jump at the opportunity.”

“But...once they come here, I could never keep you hidden here,” she said a little bleakly.

“Anri-chan, if they are worthy enough trust to come into your home, you can trust them with knowing we're here,” Shizuo said with a reassuring smile.

The girl blushed before smiling and nodding. “Thank you.”

“We'll be gone when you get home,” Izaya said. “We'll lock up and leave through the bedroom window. I'll send you that intel on your phone before we head out.”

“I will use it very carefully,” she said. “And I will be careful. I will be invisible.”

“We will be in your debt. Thank you,” Izaya said.

“Stop being dramatic,” Shizuo said, rolling his eyes. “Thank you for everything, Anri. Please, stay safe.”

“You are most welcome. And I will,” she said with a shy smile. And then she left, carrying Izaya's nicely made Bento with her.

“Get dressed, and take up your post on the sofa,” Izaya said.

“Alright, but you are going to teach me things, so that I keep up my end at the warehouse,” Shizuo said. “I don't like being waited on like this.”

“Fair enough. Watch how I do the dishes and set up the rice for Anri's supper,” Izaya said. “Ideally, this should be done last thing at night and after breakfast is cleared away.”

Shizuo dried the dishes over Izaya's protests. He then watched the multi-step process involved in setting up the rice. It seemed easy enough. Izaya told him that all the proper measuring cups are there with the rice cooker. They moved to the living room where Shizuo propped himself up on the couch with his feet up. Izaya settled next to his feet in the corner of the sofa.

“So, how do we not get this wrong aside from you using my body to satisfy your sexual needs whenever they arise,” Izaya asked mildly as he seemed to work on his laptop.

Shizuo glowered at Izaya for a moment.

“I'll get to the satisfying part last,” Shizuo said ruefully. “Mainly, let's not lie to each other – not even to spare feelings. And that covers not telling each other something – no matter what it is. Once we stop trusting, it's over.”

“I agree,” Izaya said quietly. “I worry about what happens when we leave here separately.”

“Tell me about it,” Shizuo murmured. “But this is where trust comes in, Senpai. I'll kiss you senseless before we leave if that helps.”

“I appreciate that, Kohai,” he quipped ruefully. “You were going to talk about using me to satisfy your lusts.”

“You do know that as a not gay guy or formerly not gay guy, I've never done...that...with a guy.”

Izaya smiled a very happy smile. “I would be honored to guide you through your first time. It will be good that we'll be fighting first though, or you might tear me apart.”

“I don't want to hurt you,” Shizuo muttered. “I'm not into that.”

“You won't hurt me,” Izaya said softly. “I can handle a pounding.”

“I know that much, wise ass,” Shizuo retorted. “But I don't want to get this wrong – especially this part. Besides, what's the point if we don't enjoy it to distraction.”

“Yeah, especially since this is an incredibly dangerous fire we're fooling with,” Izaya said. “But I have a strong feeling that we will really enjoy it.”


“Because we only really feel anything when we're after each other,” Izaya said quietly. “Just your voice is making me crazy.”

“Izaya – Senpai...I...”

“I can wait. I can't tell you how it makes me feel that you want everything to be just right before we do it,” Izaya said quietly.

“The only way this will work is to treat it right,” Shizuo shrugged. “Another way is what we're doing now. We have to talk to know what the other is thinking. Being close doesn't mean I know what's in that head of yours. And you can't know what's in mine unless I tell you.”

Izaya laughed at that. “Ah yes. The theory that sex enables mind reading. That theory gives me no end of entertainment. It leads to such incredible public fights. And I don't believe that talking ruins the magic or excitement.”

“We have enough of that without trying to make some,” Shizuo muttered. Then, he smiled a small smile. “And there is always Erika-chan who would be ready to make up more drama than we ever could.”

Izaya smiled at that as he turned on the laptop. Shizuo settled down and let himself drift. He wasn't really sleeping, at least not all the time. He spent some of it making a list of what he needed to do before he ended up in bed for the night. He had to check in with Tom and the Boss man. Then, he had to hit his stash and pay rent before heading to the warehouse.

“What time is dinner?” Shizuo asked over lunch of leftover tonjiru and rice. “I know I'm going to have to check in with Tom and the Boss.”

“I have to go into my office as well,” Iziaya said. “Just text me when you're on your way.”

“Do we need anything?”

No, just you and your stuff,” Izaya said. “If you get there before me, just start the rice and have a bath.”

“Okay, that works.”

“You nervous?”

“Fuck no. Not about what we have to do anyway,” Shizuo said. “Beatin' in heads I know how to do. The rest is all new for me. I don't see a lot of action.”

“That's probably been my fault,” Izaya smiled.

“It was.”

Izaya laughed at that. “I'll make it up to you, I swear. You can use me all you want to get off.”

“God help us if you change your mind next week,” Shizuo mumbled.

“I could say the same.”

“No. I don't go back once I've decided something,” Shizuo said quietly as he dried the dishes.

“What made you decide? That took more than math,” Izaya said. “I wasn't even trying to push you.”

“No, you weren't,” Shizuo agreed. “At first, I liked the idea of a simple truce between us. But I realized after the first kiss that you wouldn't be happy as just friends. But I thought if we spent time alone together that maybe you could accept the friendship anyway.”

“I didn't know that you were such an optimist,” Izaya quipped. “Something changed your mind.”

“When I kissed you to keep you still,” Shizuo said. “I kinda liked it.”

“Kinda...I'm flattered.”

“Don't push it. Not gay guy here,” Shizuo smirked. “I liked your company. I liked you close to me in bed. I liked kissing you. I really liked the idea of a life with a little peace.”

“Just a little peace?”

“It's us, remember?” Shizuo asked with a snort. “I never know what will be chasing me or gunning for me for reasons that I usually have nothing to do with me or you. And I can't begin to imagine what you've been up to that could follow you home.”

“Point taken,” Izaya chuckled softly. “It won't be dull, right?”

“Yeah. I'll have to figure out how to get groceries on a dead run,” Shizuo muttered ruefully.

“You are so funny, Shizuo – san,” Izaya laughed.

“That's me – hilarious. Come here,” Shizuo said as he backed Izaya into the nearest corner.

Shizuo pulled Izaya close while pinning him against the wall. That time, he offered his mouth expectantly. His eyes were dreamy. It was such a vulnerable and trusting expression. Shizuo found his blood rising at the thought of his abject surrender. He also found himself feeling powerfully protective of the slighter man. That kiss was deep and powerful, leaving them both breathless.

“What were we about to do again?” Izaya asked softly as Shizuo kissed him along his throat.

“We're going to kick some ass, eat some...”


“ some katsudon and you're going to teach me how to fuck you. Then, we'll catch some sleep.”

Izaya smiled. “Sounds good. Let's get to it.”

Shizuo reluctantly released him. “Yeah, I'm ready to bash some faces.”

“And not mine this time!”

“I owe you a pounding, but that's for later.”

Izaya smirked as he pulled on his coat.

They made their way out of the house through the bedroom window. Shizuo closed it until the latch caught, completely locking the house. He gave Izaya a reassuring gaze before putting on his sunglasses.

“The Scoobies should be just a few houses away. I'm going to meet Celty a block away,” Shizuo said. “Race you to the park!”

It was the right thing to say to lighten the tension of parting. Izaya grinned. “I'll beat you to the fountain!”

Gorgeous diplomat Carson thought his lusts finally led him to ruin. The obsession with Eli, a well connected intern, doomed him to exile on a planet many light years away from his luxurious home. He was to be the first humanoid Emissary on a strange far flung world. Instead of a deary outpost, Carson found a paradise where he was world famous, and his every whim was to be satisfied. However, all was not as it appeared. The sophisticated android tasked to service him looked and sounded like the delectable Eli, but he was the one bending Carson over his own desk and everything else instead of the other way around! Correcting those overly sensitive aliens could ruin his position. Carson was unsure if he was caught in a hell of his own making or if he was on the best ride of his life!

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