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[personal profile] caffeine_buzz
Title: Last of Days
Fandom: K Project
Rating: T
Pairings/Warnings: Sarumi.
Summary: Sometimes it felt as if the day Fushimi had joined Homra he’d received a deep cut to the vein and he’d been bleeding out slowly ever since.

It was raining by the time he reached the bar.

Fushimi had stopped briefly by the apartment he and Misaki shared and he wasn’t quite certain if he was disappointed or relieved when Misaki turned out to be absent. Fushimi had briefly dealt with his wound, contenting himself with simply swathing it in just enough bandages to slow the bleeding. Then he’d taken a quick moment to change clothes before leaving to find Misaki again.

It had been raining when he’d left the apartment, too, but Fushimi hadn’t really had much of a choice but to walk in it. He didn’t own an umbrella.

(The sky was gray and threatening and Fushimi stood stupidly in the doorway of the school, staring at the rain as his fellow students surged out around in him in groups of twos and threes, talking excitedly with each other as they went, umbrellas in hand.

Fushimi shifted slightly and stared up at the cold sky with dull eyes, white hands tight around the handles of his school bag. Three boys from his class ran by, looked at him once and then dashed past, snickering. Fushimi didn’t bother to watch them go and continued to stand there unnoticed, staring at the rain.

It wasn’t like he cared. All of this, it was always nothing to him.

“Saruhiko!” The yell was the only warning he had before the Misaki dive-bomb hit and nearly bowled him over. “I didn’t think you’d still be here!”

Fushimi shrugged.

“I was waiting for the rain to stop.”

“It’s still raining?” Misaki peered around him to look outside and scowled. “It’s been crappy like this all day.” He glanced back curiously at Fushimi. “Did you forget your umbrella?”

“….Yes.” It was easier to say that. Easier not to mention the broken umbrella he’d tossed in the trash a short time ago, the one that had been neatly sliced to ribbons. Easier not to mention finding it broken and listening to three of his classmates laughing and slapping each other on the back behind him, as if they’d just enjoyed a great joke.

All of it stupid things, annoying things, things that had no meaning to him, so easier not to say it.

“Oh.” Misaki seemed to consider that for a second before giving an thoughtless shrug. “Then you can just share mine, I guess.”

“What?” Fushimi’s eyes widened in sudden surprise.

“Well, we’re friends, right?” Misaki said, as if it was all no big deal to him. Something he might say to anybody. “I’ll just walk home with you and you can share mine on the way so we both don’t get wet. I mean, unless you don’t want to…”

Something he might say to anybody, but Fushimi was the one he was saying it to.

“No, that’s fine.” Fushimi couldn’t stop the smile from coming over his face and Misaki seemed to light up at the sight of it. Fushimi felt something catch in his throat.

Misaki held out the umbrella with one hand and Fushimi wrapped one of his hands over the hilt as well, fingers just barely touching Misaki’s, and together they walked out into the rain.

Fushimi silently made a note to never replace that umbrella.)

The rain fell heavily on him and Fushimi clenched his teeth, and kept walking.

Kusanagi looked up as Fushimi entered and the greeting that had been on his lips died the moment he caught sight of the state of Fushimi’s being.

“Fushimi? You’re soaking wet!”

“I didn’t have an umbrella,” Fushimi said testily, scanning the near-empty bar with an irritated click of his tongue. The only person visible besides Kusanagi was Anna, sitting on a stool in the corner. Misaki was nowhere to be seen and Fushimi immediately turned as if to leave.

“Wait a minute, you’re not going back out there.” Kusanagi directed him over to a chair. “Let me find some towels, you’re dripping everywhere. Anna-chan, come help.”

Anna dutifully hopped off her stool and followed Kusanagi upstairs, glancing curiously up at Fushimi as she went past.

“Ah, Fushimi?” Totsuka’s face suddenly appeared from the stairwell. “There you are, we wondered what happened to you. Yata tried to call you, but your phone wasn’t picking up.”

Fushimi glanced up sharply at that and then quickly looked away. Totsuka was smiling at him again and it was pissing him off. Fushimi’s hand ran over the PDA still in his pocket, fingers sliding along the edges.

Misaki had tried to call. He didn’t know why it mattered, but it did. That was something, wasn’t it? That Misaki had called.

Fushimi bit his lip and kept his head lowered, trying his best not to meet Totsuka’s eyes. Totsuka always had a way of looking at you that suggested he knew exactly what was happening in your head, and Fushimi thought that was the thing about Totsuka that he hated the most.

There was the sound of footsteps coming down the stairs and Fushimi looked up slightly as Kusanagi came back down with a towel in his hands and Anna at his heels, the girl nearly buried under the weight of the two large fluffy towels she was carrying.

“Here, dry off.” Kusanagi held out the towel with no hesitation at all and Fushimi felt his irritation spark again.

Every single one of them. They all acted as if he was one of them, as if they were some kind of family. It was ridiculous. It made him sick. Fushimi knew better. He knew better than to trust that sort of thing.

(The hand reaching out and slapped away every time, until there was no point in reaching out anymore and that was lesson he wouldn't forget.)

Fushimi’s fists clenched against his pants, twisting the fabric between his fingers. He hated it. He hated everything about it. They weren’t family. They weren’t comrades. He didn’t need any of that useless stuff. He only needed Misaki. Misaki was the only one who had ever been important to him and these people had taken Misaki away. And now they had the nerve to keep acting like that was nothing, like they hadn’t hurt him at all. It made Fushimi sick, being surrounded by all this false warmth.

A light touch on his hand made him start in surprise.

“Saruhiko.” Anna stood beside him, holding out a towel. Fushimi stared back at her for a long moment.

“Tch.” He clicked his tongue and took the towel, trying his best to dry off his sopping hair.

“You should probably get out of those wet clothes before you catch a cold,” Kusanagi said, going back behind the bar. “You should go home as soon as the rain stops.”

“I’m fine,” Fushimi said dismissively, pulling the towel over his head as if that would somehow make them all disappear. Even so, he could feel the soft gaze resting on him.

Don't smile at me like that. Don't be kind to me. I don't need it at all, that useless affection. I've never needed such things.

Fushimi kept his head lowered, wishing he could be anywhere else. He hated being alone at the bar without Misaki, forced to deal with all these people who kept thinking they knew anything about him, who kept wanting to make him think they cared.

All these worthless things, things he had never had or needed. It made his heart clench and his breath clog in his lungs. It was pointless. Everything was pointless. He didn’t know why they felt the need to act like this towards him, every time. He didn’t need Homra. He didn’t need friendship, or comrades. He didn’t need a group or a king, didn’t need people to fuss over him or smile at him or pretend he was one of them when he knew that he never, ever would be.

Every time the Red King was around Fushimi felt stifled and twitchy all over, like he was being smothered. No one else was like that. It was only his weakness, his alone. That was the mark that he could feel deeper than the one on his chest. He wasn’t part of this place. How he’d ever been able to take any of Mikoto’s powers was a mystery even he didn’t want to think about. But it was clear from the very start that he’d never been like the others. So he didn’t need it, didn’t need them to act like he was the same. In the end, it would be the same as every other group he’d ever dared to join until he realized that joining groups was pointless. He didn’t need any of them, not like this.

He just needed Misaki, and Misaki was drifting away. Fushimi bit his lip and the wound in his side ached.

The door slammed open and cool air blew into the bar, and suddenly Fushimi felt as if he could breathe again as Misaki’s voice floated over to his ears.

“—and I told you, that’s stupid because--”

“But Yata-san, what about--”

Kamamoto was on his heels and they were both brandishing open umbrellas. Misaki was waving his around in emphasis to something he was saying, just missing a shelf full of wine glasses.

“Yata-chan, umbrella,” Kusanagi said warningly and Misaki turned to look at him sheepishly, as if just noticing the group clustered around one section of the bar.

“Ah, sorry, Kusanagi-san, I was just saying—Hey!” The umbrella snapped shut as Misaki made a sound of angry surprise. “Saruhiko! Where the hell have you been?”

Misaki stalked over to him, holding up the umbrella dramatically and using it as a pointer.

“You moron, you’re all wet! You didn’t bring an umbrella, did you? You’ve always been like that, even in middle school I was always having to let you use mine or else you get sick and then--”

“Don’t point that at other people, idiot,” Fushimi said darkly, placing one hand on Misaki’s umbrella and pointing it downward. “Stop being so dramatic.”

“Me?” Misaki snapped. “You’re the one who disappeared! I’ve been calling you for hours, you never answer your phone--”

“I wasn’t aware I needed your permission to go anywhere,” Fushimi said coolly. This was all right. This was familiar, arguing with Misaki like this. He could almost forget where they were and who was surrounding them. It was like old times, just him and Misaki.

Only the two of them. Just like it was supposed to be.

“You’re always like that,” Misaki complained, throwing himself down on the chair beside Fushimi. “You can’t ever work with other people properly, geez. If Totsuka-san hadn’t asked about you I wouldn’t have even noticed you were gone…”

Fushimi's fingers twitched almost imperceptibly, as if he was reaching for a knife. Misaki was still talking but the words sounded far away, as if he was listening from underwater.

(“If Totsuka-san hadn’t asked about you I wouldn’t have even noticed you were gone.”)

(“There you are!”

“Hm?” Fushimi opened his eyes languidly to see Misaki’s irritated face staring back down at him. The sun was shining down behind him and a warm breeze was blowing.

“You skipped class.”

“I didn’t feel like going.” Fushimi felt too tired to even shrug, so he simply closed his eyes again and let the sun warm his face.

“Hey, Saruhiko!” Misaki yelped indignantly. “I had to go look for you, you know. It was really no fun when I saw you’d run off.”

There was the sound of movement and he opened one eye curiously. Misaki had flopped down next to him, hands behind his head, staring up at the clouds.


“Next time tell me when you’re skipping,” Misaki muttered irritably. “I’ll skip with you, okay?”

Fushimi stared at him for a long moment, watching as the clouds made shadows across Misaki's body.

“If I don’t tell you,” he said after a moment’s consideration, “will you come find me anyway?”

“Well, yeah!” Misaki’s eyes snapped back up to meet his. “It’s always way more interesting when you’re there, Saruhiko!”

“All right.” Fushimi closed his eyes again. “Misaki.”

“Hm?” He could feel Misaki’s eyes on him but Fushimi didn’t bother to look at him.

“Come find me again. Every time.”

“That’s what I said I’d do,” Misaki said, annoyed. “Just tell me next time, okay?”

“If I’m not there, come find me. I want you to find me.”

“Saru…” Misaki’s voice was low and irritated. “Hey! You just like making me run around, don’t you?!”

“Definitely come find me next time.”

“You’re weird, Saruhiko.”)

“Hey! Hey! Are you even listening, Saru?”

“Was someone saying something?” Fushimi said dully. “I just heard a dog’s yapping.”

“Who are you calling a dog, you shitty monkey?” Misaki demanded, grabbing his collar for a moment and then pulling his hand away with a yell. “Your shirt’s all soaked too! Seriously, why don’t you ever just buy an umbrella?”

“Normally I’d borrow Misaki’s, but it wasn’t left for me,” Fushimi said, leaning against the bar.

“That’s because you ran off!” Misaki stated. “That’s what I was saying before, if you’d just stay with everyone like you’re supposed to--”

“Like I’m supposed to?” Fushimi said mockingly. “Unlike Misaki, I’m not a kindergartner who needs his hand held every time he goes outside.”

“You…you’re just trying to piss me off now, aren’t you?”

“Now, now.” Totsuka waded between them, waving his hands in a placating manner. “There’s no need to fight about it. Fushimi’s all right, so it’s okay. You were worried, weren’t you, Yata?”

"Hmmph." Misaki snorted dramatically and looked away, crossing his arms. "Like I'd be worried about a stupid monkey."

"I didn't ask you to worry about me, Misaki." Fushimi made certain to place extra emphasis on the name and felt gratified when Misaki gave an indignant yelp.

"And don't use that name! I tell you that every time and you never listen, ever since we met..."

"Was someone speaking?" Fushimi mused, looking away.

"You shitty monkey..." Misaki growled, swinging the umbrella upwards again and just missing shattering a nearby bottle.

"Yata-chan," Kusanagi warned again, death in his voice, and Misaki lowered the umbrella with a nervous smile. Kusanagi sighed. "Anyway, what are two doing back already? Weren't you supposed to be collecting intel about that group for Mikoto?"

"Hey, where is Mikoto-san?" Misaki's attention was immediately swayed and Fushimi felt the sudden painful throbbing in his head again.

"He went out," Kusanagi said. Misaki replied but Fushimi couldn't hear the words at all. Blood was pounding in his ears and his fingers dug into the skin of his palms.

It’s always about Mikoto-san. Who cares about where he is. I'm here. I've always been here. Isn't that enough?

It's disgusting. Fushimi lowered his head slightly, letting the towel slip down to shadow his face. And I'm just as bad. Wagging my tail for every scrap of attention he shows me. Fushimi grit his teeth in frustration. No better than--than Misaki.

Why does it even matter? I don’t need any of this.

Not even Misaki. I’m fine on my own.

I’m fine.

His head hurt too much and his chest felt like it was on fire. Bleeding out again, the same as always. How was he supposed to even think, when his head hurt so much?

A hand pressed against his forehead and he froze.

“Are you all right, Fushimi? You look a little pale,” Totsuka said. Fushimi’s wide eyes met his and Totsuka smiled at him. The smile made his chest burn and Fushimi's face twisted into a scowl.

You don't know me. Don't look at me like that.

Don't care about me like that, not when you don't know anything at all.

"Huh?" Misaki's head snapped back and an exasperated look came over his face. “I knew it! You caught a cold again, right? That’s because you don’t take care of yourself, you stupid monkey, I told you--”

“Shut up,” Fushimi growled. The pain in his head made him suddenly angry at everything, at Misaki, at Totsuka, at the stupid bar and the idiot people who all kept acting like they had any idea of anything about him.

I never wanted to be here with any of you. I never asked to be near anyone like this.

“Don’t you tell me--”

Even Misaki—

Everything hurt. His head, his side, his chest, and Fushimi didn’t even know why.

If Suoh Mikoto walked in right now, he would look away.

The thought was like a blade across an open wound and Fushimi stiffened.

If Suoh Mikoto walked in right now, it would be no different than if I was alone.

Fushimi stood abruptly, letting the towel slide off his head onto the floor.

“I’m leaving,” he said to no one in particular as he walked quickly towards the door, ignoring Misaki yelling after him.

It was cold outside and the rain was still falling lightly. The chill seemed to hang in the air like a physical weight and Fushimi felt as if it was clinging to his entire body, weighing him down. Every breath felt heavy, a block of ice sliding down his throat and settling in his chest. It seemed like his legs should be too heavy to lift, but he still forced himself forward.

I don’t want this. I don’t want this.

(It would be better if everyone went away, wouldn't it?)

What I want is...

(Don’t come near me. I don’t need any of you.)

What I want…


“Idiot, you’re getting soaked again!” And then Misaki was there next to him, stretching in order to hold the umbrella over his head. Fushimi looked up dumbly, face blank. Misaki was staring up at him with a face that was a mix of annoyance and concern. “If you get sick this time I’m not taking care of you!”


“And don’t call me that!” Misaki was walking in step with him. “What’s wrong with you today?”

“Nothing.” Fushimi looked away from him. “Stop following me.”

“Hey.” Misaki grabbed his wrist and the touch stopped him dead. Misaki’s hand felt warm against his skin and Fushimi could image the fingers burning their image into the flesh, scarring him with the touch, a piece of Misaki branding him deeper than any Homra tattoo ever could. “Saru. Just stop and listen to me for a minute, okay?”

“Let go.” There were words he wanted to say but Fushimi could never seem to get them to come out right. Misaki’s hand was on his wrist and he suddenly felt like a cornered animal, like he had to get away before he was swallowed.

Which was ridiculous. This wasn’t the Red King, this was Misaki. Idiot Misaki, who got into trouble all the time if Fushimi wasn’t there. There was no reason for him to be afraid of someone as useless and stupid as Misaki.

He still wanted to run.

“Saruhiko…” Misaki was staring at him as if he was a stranger and the hand fell away from Fushimi’s wrist. All of the fight seemed to drain out of Fushimi and he looked down at his hands, as if he could see it dripping like blood from his fingertips.

“Why did you come after me?”

“Well…you were gonna get wet again, right?” Misaki said it as if it was the simplest thing in the world and Fushimi’s chest ached. Why did all these words come so easy for Misaki, when Fushimi’s mouth would never open when he wanted it to? “Hey, are you really sick again? I always have to tell you to be careful you idiot, every time it rains--”

“I’m fine.” He wasn’t, but lies had always tasted better in his mouth.

“Hmm.” Misaki was eying him suspiciously and Fushimi kept gazing steadily past him out at nothing, unable to meet Misaki’s eyes. Finally Misaki gave a heavy sigh. “All right, all right. Well, then you can come help me out, right?”


“Kamamoto and I were trying to get info on those drug dealers Bandou caught in our territory last week,” Misaki said, face suddenly bright and eager. “We finally figured out where a few of them were hiding. Kusanagi-san told me to go take care of them, so I’ll let you come along.”

“Why should I?” Fushimi looked away again, irritated. It was always about Homra now.

(Is everything you people do for a king?)

“Well….you’re my partner, right?” Misaki smiled.

Misaki smiled at him, and Fushimi felt something catch in his throat. He nodded and didn’t even realize it until Misaki gave a cheer and grabbed his wrist again, pulling him forward.

“All right! Come on, let’s go kick some asses!”

Misaki, leading the way, and every time Fushimi could not stop himself from following. Wherever Misaki went, he’d always followed, even when the road had led straight to Homra. It was a compulsion he’d never quite been able to break.

Fushimi moved his hand so that his fingers could entwine themselves in Misaki’s, and let himself be led.


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