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Title: Taking Care
Fandom: K Project
Rating: K+
Pairings/Warnings: Sarumi.
Summary: After Yata is injured, Fushimi attempts to take care of him.
Notes: For Sarumi Fest :) I really like how this turned out.


“I'm so bored!” Yata groaned loudly and there was the sound of something being thrown against the far end of the bed. “I'm gonna get up now, okay?”

“Stay put, idiot.” Fushimi crossed the room to where Yata was still squirming in his bed, head and one ankle covered in bandages, leg propped up on a pillow. “Kusanagi-san said to stay off your feet for now, remember?”

“But there's nothing to do.” Yata sighed heavily.

“It's not my fault you keep throwing your game system around,” Fushimi said, picking it up from the floor where Yata had thrown it and tossing it back at him.

“The battery's almost dead, though,” Yata muttered, pouting. He eyed Fushimi expectantly and Fushimi sighed.

“You can use mine then, if you're going to keep complaining.”

“Yay! You're the best, Saruhiko!”

“Just don't touch my save file this time,” Fushimi said, climbing up to his bunk to retrieve the aforementioned game system. He winced slightly as he grabbed hold of the ladder with his right hand, but grit his teeth and continued pulling himself up.

“But you're farther than me,” Yata protested. “I can't get past the boss on level 4.”

“That's not my fault.” Fushimi jumped back down from his bed and handed the game to Yata, who cheered quietly as he took hold of it. His face, Fushimi noted, was distinctly red, and Fushimi turned without a word and headed towards the bathroom.

When he came back, thermometer in hand, Yata had set the game system down beneath the bed and was trying to climb to his feet. Fushimi immediately glared daggers at him.

“Misaki...”

“S-sorry.” Yata laughed weakly and sank back under the covers. His face was definitely red. “I'm—I'm just kinda hot sitting here. And I was feeling a little hungry, so...”

“Do you even listen when people talk?” Fushimi said with a sigh. He held up the thermometer with his left hand. “Here, mouth.”

“What's that for?” Yata eyed him suspiciously and Fushimi gave him a flat look.

“What does it look like? I'm checking to see if you have a fever.”

“Don't have a fever,” Yata stated, averting his eyes. “I just hurt my ankle, that's all.”

“And hit your head and cut yourself on who knows what,” Fushimi said. “If you weren't such a reckless moron all the time these things wouldn't happen and you wouldn't be stuck in bed right now.”

“H-hey, stop calling me a moron!” Yata argued. “I was helping Mikoto-san!”

“He didn't need you on the roof with a skateboard,” Fushimi said darkly, all but pushing the thermometer into Yata's mouth. “Honestly, what did you think would happen? You're lucky you just fell down the fire escape and not over the edge of the building.”

Yata replied something that came out as gibberish with the thermometer in his mouth and Fushimi glared at him again. Yata snorted and crossed his arms, waiting impatiently until finally Fushimi took the thermometer from his mouth and glanced down at the screen, clicking his tongue.

“What I was saying,” Yata continued as Fushimi started to walk back towards the bathroom, “is that it worked out okay anyway. You caught me, right?”

“Because you all but fell on top of me,” Fushimi replied darkly, trying to ignore the sudden throbbing pain that was shooting through his right wrist again. He set the thermometer on the edge of the sink and came back. “38.3. I told you you'd end up with a fever.”

“That's barely a fever,” Yata argued. “Can't I just get out of bed to go to the bathroom, at least?”

“You just did that half an hour ago,” Fushimi said. “Stop trying to aggravate your injuries, stupid.”

“This is the worst,” Yata groaned. “Seriously, Saruhiko, I'm gonna die like this. I'm gonna fall over and die of boredom. You have to help me.”

“Try actually thinking ahead next time, then,” Fushimi said without missing a beat.

“And I'm kinda hungry,” Yata added. “We don't have any leftovers from last night, do we?”

“We ate at the bar last night,” Fushimi said quietly, voice even and emotionless.

“Oh, right.” Yata laughed easily. “It was really fun, wasn't it? It's kinda cool staying up late and eating with everyone.”

“Cool,” Fushimi echoed dully.

“We did end up staying up real late too, didn't we?” Yata said slowly. There was a note of drowsiness to his voice. “And then we got up early for the raid this morning...maybe I'll just take a nap or something. It'll rest my leg, right?”

“Do whatever you want,” Fushimi said, shrugging.

“You're not a very helpful guy sometimes, Saru, you know that,” Yata said with a groan, falling back against his pillow. “Okay, I'm gonna take a nap. I can still use your game system when I wake up, right?”

Fushimi shrugged again. Yata gave him an exasperated but fond smile and then rolled over to face the wall. He shifted his injured leg slightly and bit back a small whimper of pain as he closed his eyes.

Fushimi sat there in the center of the room for several minutes, watching Yata sleep.

Idiot. Idiot. Fushimi bit his lip and his gaze strayed towards their small kitchen area.

There hadn't been many leftovers at all recently – “Saruhiko, come on, let's go see everyone at the bar, Totsuka-san said he'd cook something today!” – and they didn't have much in the way of food because neither one of them had gotten around to going to the grocery store recently. Still, Yata always managed to find ingredients whenever Fushimi said he was hungry.

Fushimi glanced furtively at the sleeping Yata and then got to his feet, walking towards the kitchen. There was another spike of pain along his arm as he stood and Fushimi pulled down his right sleeve, clicking his tongue as he surveyed the small collection of bruises that dotted his right wrist.

It was all because Misaki was an idiot, like always. They'd been raiding some gang causing trouble for Homra – Yata had probably told him why but Fushimi hadn't bothered listening – and Mikoto and a couple of the others had ended up fighting some of the gang on the roof. Misaki, moron that he was, had managed to get his skateboard up there and had probably been showing off or something, who knew, Fushimi had been trying to keep an eye on him but Misaki had gotten away when he wasn't looking and had of course run his idiot head straight into trouble. He'd been fighting on the roof like a moron and then someone had run into him and he'd lost his balance and fallen down the fire escape.

And Fushimi, clearly infected by all this idiocy, had seen Misaki start to fall and had made a beeline for the fire escape. He got about halfway up and managed to stop Yata's fall just barely but not quite in time to save Misaki from a bruised head and a fractured ankle, and then like a moron Fushimi had probably sprained his own wrist while he was at it.

Fushimi clicked his tongue in disgust as he pulled his sleeve back over the telltale bruises. It was pointless anyway. He'd sat back while Kusanagi bandaged Yata's injuries and had promised to keep Yata off his feet, and then helped him back to the apartment and didn't bother to feel his own injury. There wasn't any point to it anyway. If he left it alone it would heal in time either way, so there was no reason for anyone to fuss over it.

Fushimi stared blankly down at the stove in front of him, fidgeting.

Whenever he was sick Misaki always made him something to eat, right? There was that okayu thing Yata said he'd learned to make from his mother. It tasted all right. That was the sort of thing to make someone when they had a fever, even a small one. They probably had ingredients enough for it, and Yata had said he was hungry.

Fushimi fidgeted again, unsure. Yata always did all the cooking because Fushimi had no real interest in it. Fushimi didn't really care about food much anyway and cooking seemed boring, so he'd never bothered to learn how to do it.

And a very small voice in the back of his mind pointed out that Misaki had learned to cook from his mom, that learning to cook was something parents taught their children so they could take care of themselves when they grew up, and Fushimi immediately shut that thought down and buried it deep inside with all the other quiet thoughts he didn't intend to waste time dealing with.

It couldn't be that hard, right? Fushimi reached for a pan, careful to use his left hand, right arm held straight down at his side until it stopped all that irritating throbbing. He was reasonably certain he knew what the ingredients were and if not he could find them easily enough online. It couldn't be that difficult, if even an idiot like Misaki could do it. And besides, Fushimi had made Yata's watch all on his own and had programmed his own computer from spare parts and even fixed a broken kotatsu by himself, how hard could cooking be?



Very hard, it turned out, as Fushimi sat staring at something that definitely didn't look very much like what Misaki usually made, his eyes narrowed in irritation.

He'd tried, he really had. The recipe had looked easy enough online, and they'd had the right kind of rice and he'd even tried adding an egg like Yata always did. But the rice had seemed like it was taking forever to boil and Fushimi had gotten bored so he'd turned up the heat and walked away for a little bit, and then the pot had boiled over and he'd hurt his wrist again grabbing the lid to throw over the pot before it got too messy. Then he'd put the entire egg in before realizing he was supposed to break it first (none of the recipes online had said anything about breaking the egg first, he thought peevishly, why did people just assume everyone would know what to do when it said to add an egg, an egg was an egg, it should have said to add the insides of an egg or something) and then he'd had to scoop bits of shell out. By the time he'd finished half the rice was burnt and the whole thing was sort of thick and vaguely glue-like, with little yellow bits of scrambled egg stuck to it and probably eggshell pieces hidden somewhere inside like the opposite of a toy surprise.

Fushimi had poured what looked edible into a bowl and hoped it would look better out of the pot but that hadn't helped at all. He picked at the edges with a chopstick.

It probably tasted better than it looked. Once Yata woke up, he'd have Misaki test it out.

Fushimi bit his lip and pulled at his right sleeve again. He felt restless and annoyed and vaguely disappointed and he wasn't really sure why. He didn't care about cooking, after all. If he was bad at it, it didn't really matter, except maybe Yata would tease him a little and if they were going to play that game, well, there were all kinds of things Fushimi could do that Yata couldn't, so there. It wasn't like he was actually lacking something in not being able to cook. That was what he had Misaki for anyway, and for everything else there was takeout and pre-made convenience store food.

Even so, he felt like there was a lump growing in his throat and it bothered him even more so that he almost wanted to throw the entire thing on the floor just to distract himself from it.

A sudden knocking on the door made him jump.

“Who the hell...” Fushimi muttered irritably under his breath as Yata stirred behind him.

“Hmm...Saruhiko? Wha's goin' on?”

“Some idiot has the wrong apartment,” Fushimi started to say when an immediately recognizable and far too cheerful voice came from the other side of the door.

“Yata! Fushimi! Is anyone there?”

“Eh? Totsuka-san?” Yata sat up as if about to go answer the door and Fushimi waved him back down.

“Stay there, idiot, how many times do I have to tell you?” Fushimi stormed over to the door and pulled it open to reveal a smiling Totsuka, accompanied by Suoh Mikoto and a pot of something steaming.

“Aah, good, Fushimi, I was worried we had the wrong place!” Totsuka laughed as he let himself inside, blithely ignoring Fushimi's look of obvious distaste. “King and I thought we should come see how Yata's doing. Yata, hi!” He waved towards where Yata was still sitting dumbfounded in bed.

“M-Mikoto-san!” Yata immediately sat up a little straighter.

“Kusanagi-san thought we should make sure you were staying off your feet,” Totsuka said, walking over to him. Mikoto followed calmly after and leaned against Yata's bed as if it was no different than his own room. Yata's cheeks seemed a little redder and Fushimi felt his fists clench. “Oh! And Anna-chan and I made you this! Tell me if it tastes good, all right?” He handed Yata the pot.

“What, you made it for me?” Yata said, accepting it with a smile.

“With Anna-chan's help, she also wanted you to feel better,” Totsuka said. “There's enough for Fushimi to have some too, I thought you both might need something to eat.”

“I'm not hungry,” Fushimi said flatly, turning away and walking to the opposite side of the room near the kitchen. His own failed attempt at cooking stared mockingly back at him and he hunched his shoulders, trying to block out the sound of Yata and Totsuka's happy chattering and Mikoto's occasional grunts of approval from behind him.

Fushimi's fingers clenched and his wrist hurt. The floor was still damp where the water had boiled over and there were small wet grains of rice everywhere. The pot sat half empty in the sink, burned rice stuck all over the bottom. Fushimi turned on the water, letting it run as loud of as he could to drown out the sounds of talking from behind him. He poured a little dish soap into the pot and watched as the soapy water filled it to the brim and spilled over into the sink.

Stupid. Stupid. Stupid. His head was starting to hurt and Fushimi grit his teeth. He wanted to go curl up in bed but he couldn't because of all the idiots behind him.

“Fushimi? Are you okay?” Fushimi's head shot up as Totsuka peered over his shoulder. Fushimi glared at him and Totsuka smiled airily. “You looked a little pale.”

“I'm fine,” Fushimi sat flatly, knocking the pot over in the sink and letting the water run into the drain. Totsuka was looking at him as if expecting something and over his shoulder Fushimi could see Yata still talking animatedly with Mikoto, face bright and smiling. “How did you know where we live?”

“Oh, is that all you were wondering?” Totsuka shrugged. “Yata told me once. I was a little worried about you two, Kusanagi-san didn't think you'd really be able to keep Yata off his feet. And you didn't look so good when you left the bar.”

“It wasn't that serious,” Fushimi said blandly, lowering the water level to a slight trickle and letting it run through his fingers. “I can take care of Misaki by myself.”

“I wasn't talking about Yata,” Totsuka said, and he was giving Fushimi that knowing smile that Fushimi had always hated. “I thought you didn't look good.”

“I'm fine,” Fushimi said shortly, almost involuntarily tugging his right sleeve further over his wrist.

“That's good, I'm glad I was wrong,” Totsuka said lightly, too innocent. His eyes suddenly alighted on the bowl of food, still sitting on the counter. “Hmm, what's this? Fushimi, did you cook—”

He hadn't even finished speaking before Fushimi's eyes widened and he almost slammed his hand into the bowl as he grabbed it and dumped all of it into the sink.

“Aw, that's no good, I wanted to try it...” Totsuka said sadly as Fushimi turned the water level back up, the remains of his cooking experiment washed straight down the garbage disposal. “Did you make that yourself? For Yata?”

“It doesn't matter,” Fushimi said coldly, eyes fixed on the sink. Small bits of burned rice were still visible around the edges of the drain. “It wouldn't have tasted right anyway.”

“But you didn't even taste it at all, did you?” Totsuka leaned his head on his palms as he looked sideways at Fushimi. “It might have tasted all right. You should have let Yata try it.”

“It doesn't matter,” Fushimi repeated again, not looking at him.

“You tried, though.” Totsuka's smile was gentle and made Fushimi's skin tingle with irritation. “I think Yata would've been happy, that you tried to make him something.”

“It wasn't any good anyhow,” Fushimi said. “I should have just gotten rid of it right away.”

“But that's only your perspective, right?” Totsuka said. “You shouldn't just throw it down the drain because you think it isn't important. You put a lot of effort into it, right? Someone else might be happy just to know that, even if the way it turned out wasn't perfect. Just because it seems like it's no good to you doesn't mean it's completely worthless, if you put your whole heart into it.”

“I don't know what you're talking about,” Fushimi replied blandly, still staring down. Totsuka shook his head and gave another smile.

“Next time when you try again, let me taste it, okay?”

Before Fushimi could reply Totsuka had already moved away, walking back towards where Yata and Mikoto were.

“King, we should probably get back. Yata needs his rest, right?”

“No, really, I'm fine!” Yata insisted. “I feel loads better now!”

“You should still probably take it easy though, or Kusanagi-san will scold us,” Totsuka said, tugging Mikoto's arm to get him to his feet. “We'll see you later, okay?”

“Ah, wait, the food...” Yata reached for the pot he'd left sitting on the floor at the foot of the bed and Totsuka touched his shoulder to stop him.

“It's fine, you can bring back the pot the next time you're at the bar,” Totsuka said. “You left some, right? In case Fushimi gets hungry later.”

Yata laughed weakly and ran a hand through his hair, smiling sheepishly.

“Bye, Fushimi!” Totsuka sang as he half-dragged Mikoto out the door, waving. Fushimi ignored him, still leaning over the sink.

The door closed and there was a long moment of silence as Fushimi turned the water off.

“Aargh, I'm back to being bored,” Yata proclaimed. “It was all right when Mikoto-san was here but now it's no good again.”

Fushimi clicked his tongue and walked over to the bed.

“I'm taking a nap now,” he stated. “If you get up while I'm sleeping, I'll notice and I'll pin you to that bed with my knives, got it, idiot?”

“What's with you all of a sudden?” Yata said, half-annoyed and half-concerned. “Whatever, anyway, you said I still get to use your game system, right? Where'd I leave it...”

“It's right here, can't you even remember something so simple for a minute--” Fushimi thoughtlessly reached for the game with his right hand and couldn't stop the soft whimper from escaping his mouth as pain shot up his arm and he dropped the game system on the floor. Fushimi fell to his knees, holding tightly to his injured wrist.

“Saruhiko?” Yata was sitting up in an instant, pulling himself over towards Fushimi without any regard for his own injury. “What is it, what's wrong?”

“It's...nothing.” Fushimi grit his teeth, trying to will the pain down. He swallowed hard, trying to gather himself as he stood back up. “Nothing. I'm fine.”

“You're not fine, you're hurt--” Yata started to stand and Fushimi pushed him back down.

“Don't get out of bed, idiot!” Fushimi half-yelled at him. He was aware that he felt hot and his right hand was shaking. “Really, you're such a moron, so annoying, always running off and getting hurt when I'm not looking, and then you can't even follow simple instructions, it's really irritating...” He cut off and pressed his good hand against his head, suddenly feeling dizzy.

“Don't you call me an idiot, idiot,” Yata said quietly, pulling himself up and grabbing Fushimi's right wrist. Fushimi immediately hissed in pain as Yata yanked up his sleeve, revealing a patchwork of bruises. Yata stared at the injury for a moment and then sighed. “Seriously, Saruhiko, what am I even supposed to do with you sometimes? Sit down, okay? Kusanagi-san gave me extra bandages, I have them here somewhere...”

“I'm fine,” Fushimi said shortly, even as he sat down weakly next to Yata's bed.

“Yeah, yeah, just keep telling yourself that, stupid monkey. Hold still for a sec. We don't have a splint or anything, so I'll just wrap it tight and then you try not to move it, okay?” Yata gently took hold of Fushimi's injured wrist and began to roll bandages around it. “You've been taking care of me all day and totally ignoring yourself, no wonder it looks so bad.”

“It's nothing,” Fushimi muttered, eyes averted.

“Doesn't look like nothing.” Yata paused. “You...you got hurt when you saved me, right? Because you tried to catch me when I fell.”

Fushimi's only reply was a click of his tongue.

“Saruhiko...” Yata paused and then shook his head, smiling. “Well, anyway....thanks.”

“If you want to thank me, don't be such an idiot next time,” Fushimi muttered.

“Yeah, well, maybe we're both the idiots this time,” Yata said. “You should've just said something if it hurt.”

“I told you, it's not important.”

“It's important to me,” Yata said pointedly. “You're always doing this kind of shit, getting hurt and not saying anything. How's anyone supposed to know, if you hide it all the time? If you just tell me, I'll take care of you.”

“Tch.” Fushimi clicked his tongue again and watched Yata wind the bandages around his arm.

It wasn't like he'd ever asked to be taken care of in the first place. Fushimi didn't really see the point in things like that. Nobody had ever taken care of him and that had always been just fine. He didn't even want that sort of thing anyway. Doing something he wouldn't normally do just to make another person happy, letting someone bind his wounds...that was all pointless, stupid. There was no value in it at all.

“Just because it seems like it's no good to you doesn't mean it's completely worthless, if you put your whole heart into it.” Totsuka's words rang in his head and Fushimi pushed them down, down, deep inside with all the other things he refused to think about, a hundred small boxes in his soul that he never intended to open again.

“All right, done,” Yata proclaimed, tying the last bandage securely.

“Can I go sleep now?” Fushimi asked dully.

“Tsk-tsk, no climbing with that hand,” Yata said authoritatively. “It won't heal if you're not careful, you know.”

“Then what do you expect me to do?” Fushimi muttered and Yata suddenly grabbed him by the waist and all but dragged him into the bed. There was barely enough room for two and one of Fushimi's legs was dangling off the side. “Misaki, you idiot, what are you--”

“Just take a break, all right, Saru?” Yata pushed Fushimi's head down so that Fushimi was leaning against his chest and then reached over and grabbed the game system with his other hand, maneuvering himself so he was leaning against the wall. “I promise I won't get up, so stay here and rest until you feel better. Just relax and sleep, okay?”

A hundred sharp replies ran through Fushimi's head, a hundred scornful refusals, and somehow when he opened his mouth none would come out. Misaki was looking right at him, smiling softly, and it made Fushimi feel strange, almost dizzy. Yata placed a hand on his head.

“I'll take care of you, all right, stupid monkey?” Yata said. “So get some sleep.”

“Shut up,” Fushimi said quietly, even as he buried his head in the crook of Yata's neck. The pain in his wrist had subsided to a dull throbbing and he suddenly felt very tired.

“Yeah, yeah. Rest, okay?”

Fushimi mumbled his assent against Yata's skin and closed his eyes, feeling strangely warm and...safe, somehow, in a way he didn't quite understand. Somewhere deep inside all the things he locked away seemed to finally grow still and calm, and Fushimi fell asleep to the comforting sound of Yata's steady breathing.
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