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Small Feet Stereotypes, or the Internet Breaks Yuuri

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Yuuri’s not sure how it’s possible.

Technically, Yuuri has seen Viktor naked. And, even if Viktor was flaccid then, he wasn’t small by any stretch of the imagination. (Not that Yuuri buys into stereotypes, but still, it has to be a thing, right? – Apparently, according to a quick Google search, the scientific jury is still out on that one, but there’s a million other things that correlate with small feet, which is an exaggeration.

Yuuri is surely going to hell.)

Look, it’s not like Yuuri doesn’t also feel like a little bit of a pervert because here he is obsessing over Viktor’s feet and comparing the size of his feet to the size of his dick—which would be so much worst if they weren’t engaged now. But it’s because they’re engaged and back in Hasetsu that Yuuri is currently hiding out under a mountain of blankets in his childhood bedroom, pretending he’s not thinking about Viktor’s feet.

Yuuri doesn’t even have a thing for feet!

But he has a really big thing for Viktor Nikiforov and he’s just a little bit bummed that he will never fit into Viktor’s gold blade skates. Like, before in his fanboy imagination, he didn’t fit because the shoes were a little big, but he could deal with the wiggle room. Now, he probably wouldn’t even be able to get his foot inside, because, sad as it is to admit, Viktor is a shoe size 8 (US).

.

Viktor is the one that starts the whole thing, okay? – It’s all his stupid fault. Stupid Viktor (which Yuuri doesn’t mean because, again, that man is going to be his husband and looks amazing in spandex and fuchsia, and how many people actually look good in purply-pinks?).

They’ve just finished ice dancing together for the world (because it’s beyond ice skating, really, considering how many theatrics they dumped into the mix) and are mid-way through stumbling back into their shared hotel room when – “You have big feet for your frame,” Viktor comments, like it’s completely natural to notice the size of people’s feet. Maybe it’s a totally normal thing. The second time Yuuri saw Viktor naked was the time he got to see Viktor’s feet and they were slim, with nice-sized toes, and not exactly pretty, considering how battered they were at the time.

Yuuri almost trips, “What?”

This is something Yuuri has actually heard before, because he’s a U.S. size 10, which is definitely above the average in Japan. It’s on the high-side of the spectrum and once made for significantly awkward conversations with sponsors, until he got to America, where that was the average size and Yuuri didn’t have to bat an eyelash at his shoe size.

“Can I try on your shoes?” Viktor asks, finger tapping at his chin in that way Yuuri knows means trouble.

“What? Why?” Yuuri squeals, already slipping off his shoes to get into the hotel room and sneak under some blankets. It’s the most dignified way to ignore his future husband.  

Viktor has left his shoes by the door, too, and is curiously staring at Yuuri’s shoes like he’s a minute from poking them.

“I think we might be the same size,” Viktor says. That makes zero sense to Yuuri.

“No way!” Yuuri laughs. “You’re significantly taller than me! Probably just an optical illusion because your shoes are a little narrower.”

Viktor looks down at his socked feet and wiggles his toes (it’s way too cute for Yuuri to handle right now): “You think my feet are dainty?”

“No! Your feet are… your feet,” Yuuri finishes lamely. He has zero thoughts about feet. “It’s just, I was wearing sneakers and you were wearing dress shoes. Dress shoes are narrower.”

“Oh, come on, Yuuri, pretty please?” Viktor pouts.

“Go shower,” Yuuri sighs, just a little defeated. “Then, I’ll go shower. And then we’re going to sleep and stop talking about shoes and feet.”

.

That could never be the end of it, though. Yuuri blames himself. One minute, he’s checking his phone; next, Facebook is reading his mind and showing him articles about shoe size and sizes, and other things. What exactly is Yuuri supposed to do? – Inch closer to the door and sneakily turn one of Viktor’s shoes upside down.

“Oh my god, Viktor’s a size 8?” he whispers, mildly horrified. How is that even possible? This has to be some mistake, right? – Right.

.

There’s a lot of “information” and misinformation out there about shoe sizes and men—and a lot of stigma about being small (in any capacity). That’s why Yuuri can’t just come out and ask Viktor his shoe size, even though now it makes a lot of sense why Viktor would even think they were the same size. It’s not that he thought Yuuri had big feet (which is not exactly accurate as a general statement, but maybe accurate for his height). The complete opposite: He probably thought Yuuri had a size more compatible with Viktor’s small feet.

Yuuri should probably stop calling them small feet until he confirms they are actually small feet.

It’s not that Yuuri loves Viktor any less for having small feet but that this small-feet-thing is beginning to take over Yuuri’s every waking thought thanks to the Internet. This must be the equivalent of an earworm in text. The topic keeps poking at him consistently until they get home.

“Where did you buy your shoes?” Yuuri finally asks during a moment of panic, which just happens to be the exact moment he’s yawning on top of Viktor’s bed back in Hasetsu.

“Oh, these?” he asks, lifting his brown leather moccasins. Viktor can never leave his shoes at the front door because he’s extra and has way too many shoes. Instead, he carries them cradled against his chest and makes sure they never touch the floor, not even inside his bedroom where he has a special shoe rack on top of a rug he bought online. “I got them during a trip to New York!”

And Yuuri decides that then it isn’t some misunderstanding. Viktor is a size 8 (US). Somehow, he can feel the little voice inside his head scream and die in a fire of surprise and shame. I can’t believe I’m actually judging Viktor for having small feet, Yuuri thinks to himself, feeling guilty that he is falling into the usual trends of toxic, fragile masculinity. It’s not Viktor’s fault biology threw him—actually, it’s not even important!

And so Yuuri decides the topic must die.

.

He blames the Swedish. They’re the ones that run that stupid study comparing men’s shoe sizes to life longevity predictions and this matters because Yuuri is going to marry Viktor at some point and they’re going to share their lives together. It is totally Yuuri’s business how long Viktor might potentially live, especially because Viktor is already older so by default they have fewer years together!

Yuuri is going to hyperventilate.

According to this study, Viktor will live between 67 to 72 years, compared to Yuuri’s 73 to 77 years on average, which means Yuuri needs to get used to the idea of Viktor dying a lot sooner than Yuuri expected.

The old Yuuri would’ve sobbed under a pile of blankets or tried to find a giant rock to burrow. The new Yuuri, the one with a gold ring, a silver medal at the last Grand Prix Final, and a bronze-colored poodle son, is not going to cry. He’s going to plan (and then he’s going to take a bath in the onsen with his fiancé and not look at his feet). Granted, it’s not easy because Viktor is already at peak physical perfection and health, even with small feet! Yuuri can’t read Swedish well enough to figure out whether that was taken into account as a control within the study.  

“Where’s my katsudon?” Viktor asks, pouting later that night. Yuuri doesn’t even bother explaining anything to his fiancé as he drops a giant plate of spinach, not even a drop of salad dressing to be seen in the horizon. Yuuri, too, has a plate of spinach for himself, but seeing as he will outlive Viktor by almost 8 years, given their age difference and his relative advantage (thanks to his feet), he decides to treat himself with some salad dressing.

When Viktor tries to reach for it, Yuuri slaps his hand.

“You can’t,” he says cryptically. “Also, we have to reduce your alcohol intake if we want you to live long enough to see your grandchildren graduate college.” – which is an even weirder statement, all things considered, but Yuuri has been researching that reasons to live are important to elongate life.

Viktor’s eyes are the size of eggs: “G—grandchildren? But we haven’t even—”

And Yuuri proceeds to slap his hand over Viktor’s mouth, giving his family an apologetic smile before shoving the spinach into his mouth.

The things I do for love, he thinks.

.

Back for a quick second to Yuuri’s heartbroken inner fanboy who will never know the emotional catharsis of wearing his idol’s skates. There’s really not much more to say beyond that. Yuuri is just heartbroken and seeing Viktor’s skates now takes on a special brand of pain that cannot be qualified by words.

“Yuuri, my love, what’s wrong?” Viktor asks, concerned when he finds his fiancé sitting cross-legged on the ground staring glassy-eyed at a poster of Viktor. Makkachin whines on his lap.

“Nothing,” Yuuri sighs, petting the poodle’s head.

.

The new diet is one thing (and even the crushing of his childhood dreams he can accept), but this whole small-feet-thing is throwing off Yuuri’s relationship game. Yuuri has never been protective or jealous. He’s pretty much happy just to be surrounded by Viktor all the time (contented in the knowledge that Viktor only has eyes for him). Viktor sometimes gets a little weird, but it’s nothing out of the normal.

And then some stupid British study on cheating and shoe size throws him off for weeks.

It’s all Chris’ fault. He’s the one who sends the study! Damn Europeans, obsessed with research about feet.

“Yuuri, you’re crushing my arm; you can’t just not pay attention to your fans!” Viktor complains, almost breathless as Yuuri drags him away, again, from the group of teenagers eager to get Yuuri’s autograph. (Minako would be screaming at him right about now.) They’re too shy to even get close, but Yuuri isn’t taking any chances. According to the study, Viktor is way more loyal than Yuuri—if feet are indicative of anything. And they are, according to the British.

Yuuri is potentially, marginally more likely to cheat than Viktor. Technically, they’re both in the clear zone, but within that there’s a spectrum.

He suddenly can’t trust himself.

The same guy that decided katsudon was his eros is now doubting his own inexperience.

“What’s going on?” Viktor asks, confused. “Yuuri, I’m very disappointed in you.”

“I just really want ramen,” Yuuri lies.

(He ends up going over later at Viktor’s insistence and giving out some autographs and taking some selfies with another group of tourists, but deep down inside, he really doesn’t care about anyone other than Viktor. And his small feet.

This is driving him crazy.)

.

Apparently, different studies all have different ideas on dick size and shoe size. The English and the Turkish are on this battle (okay, not really,) about correlations and it’s all inconclusive enough to drive Yuuri to insanity, because Viktor is definitely an outlier. His dick is beautiful and perfect and… maybe it bends a little too much to one side. So now Yuuri has to think about small feet and—“Check his fingers,” Seung-Gil says, bored when he overhears (from Phichit’s side) Yuuri’s conversation with Phichit. Yuuri wants to die. It’s one thing for Phichit to hear about Yuuri’s crazy concerns. It’s another for Seung-Gil to also hear it!

“Wait, what?” Yuuri is now intrigued. Any little bit of logic is welcome in the whirlwind of feet research that has taken over Yuuri’s world.

“There was a study done in South Korea,” he says, dead-pan. He’s obviously taken the phone hostage from Phichit, who is cackling in the background. Yuuri’s not sure how he feels about that friendship. “Says men with index fingers that are shorter than their ring fingers have a greater chance of having longer dicks; probably fits Viktor better than… the feet theory.”

“Oh my god!” Phichit says in the background.

“He’s checking his hands, isn’t he?” Yuuri asks. Phichit would definitely be the type to check his hands.

“Yup,” Seung-Gil replies. “Are you checking your hands?”

“Is it bad that I am?” Yuuri whispers, mildly embarrassed.

“No. I checked as soon as I read the article. It’s pretty accurate. At least for me.”

.

“Viktor!” Yuuri runs into Viktor’s room and interrupts ‘Makkachin’s brushing’ hour. He jumps onto the bed, eager to check Viktor’s fingers. And, yes, he admits he could and should have tried to be stealthier. “Apparently the Koreans have come up with a theory – never mind. I need to see your hands.”

Viktor frowns, “my hands?”

“Yup! Show me your hands,” Yuuri nods.

Viktor studies Yuuri carefully before his eyes brighten and he gets that heart-shaped smile: “Oh! Is this about that Korean study correlating finger sizes to penis sizes?”

And Yuuri almost chokes on his own tongue.

“How did you know?”

“You know,” Viktor grins, “there’s an easier and more accurate way to figure out the size of my junk.”

Yuuri groans, hiding his face, “You didn’t just say junk.”

“I can just show it to you!”

“Do not show me anything in front of the dog, please,” Yuuri squeaks, holding Viktor’s hand right over his waistband. Makkachin jumps from the bed immediately, and Viktor falls back laughing, like he’d been expecting to torment Yuuri all along.

“What is going on with you?” he asks Yuuri, who replies nothing, as he’s been doing for the last couple of weeks. Yuuri flops down next to him, letting Viktor bring him close. When Viktor’s arms are around his waist, he turns around to hide his face right into Viktor’s—as always—exposed chest. “Hey, careful with my titties,” Viktor says and Yuuri blows a raspberry against his skin.

.

Technically, Yuuri has gone through almost all the stages of grief: Shock (self-explanatory), denial (again, self-explanatory), anger (sort of?), bargaining (fingers versus feet counts, right?), depression (he’s still not fully over the skates-thing, but he’s getting there,) testing (dieting) – all in a weird order, but he’s gone through it. His mobile app therapist (also known as Phichit) thinks he’s doing great!

Naturally, then, Yuuri has finally come to the point of acceptance. Maybe.

He spends half the day deciding that he needs to subtly, but determinedly let Viktor and himself know that he accepts Viktor’s small feet. It’s been a good two and a half weeks. The time has come to take matters into his own hands. He sends Chris a picture of Viktor’s fancy shoes and asks him to confirm the brand: “It’s a British brand called Infinity. Custom-made leather shoes, mainly, but they have a few really nice pre-made pieces on their website. Do you know Viktor’s shoe size?”

“Yes, I’m good, thanks!” Yuuri confirms, hanging up the phone in a hurry.

And so, Yuuri turns to Google for some easy conversions and a really painfully expensive online purchase later, all he has to do is wait for Viktor’s present to arrive.

.

Viktor delivers the box to Yuuri, shaking it all the while as he crawls into bed with him. Makkachin bounds from her spot on a few pillows on the floor to cuddle against Yuuri’s empty side.

“What is it?” he asks, index finger poking a little dented corner.

“A present for you,” Yuuri chuckles, brushing Viktor’s hair back.

“For me?!” Viktor gasps. Yuuri hasn’t been a very good fiancé. He doesn’t get Viktor as many presents as Viktor gets him. This feels like an opportunity to make up for it.

Yuuri nods, pushing the box into his hands: “Here, you open it.”

It doesn’t take Viktor long to rip into the box, even getting Makkachin to help. Yuuri almost wants to tell him what’s inside. The shoes were expensive. He doesn’t want them ruined before Viktor tries them on. Viktor’s first impression gasp is everything.

“Really? Oh! Yuuri, I love it! How did you know this is my favorite shoe brand?” Viktor beams, throwing the box behind him to hug Yuuri.

Yuuri smiles big, “I hope you actually like the shoes…? I wanted it to be a total surprise, so I didn’t even think of asking Chris to vet them.”

“I’m sure I’ll love them,” Viktor whispers, giving him a soft kiss. When Viktor opens the shoe box, his face slowly falls a little as he pulls out a small looking shoe. It looks even smaller than Yuuri expected. According to the Internet, Yuuri had to order a UK 7.5 to get the equivalent of a US 8. And that’s exactly what Yuuri did.

“Yuuri,” Viktor says, pulling out a shoe hooked around his index finger. “I think you got the wrong size…”

“Wait, really?” Yuuri panics. “But I saw on Google that a US 8 was a UK 7.5 and—”

Viktor frowns, “Wait, what made you think I was a US 8?”

“Your shoes! The ones you said were from New York? I saw they had a little sideways eight.”

“You mean the infinity symbol for Infinity Shoes?”

Yuuri’s face falls, “Which is a British manufacturer! It’s only half a size too small? Maybe it’ll still fit? I guess we can return them! I’m so sorry, Viktor!”

Viktor brings Yuuri in for a hug, “Yuuri, I’m not even a UK size 8. I’m a UK size 9.5.”

Yuuri pulls away quickly.

“Wait, so you don’t have small feet?”

“WHAT?” Viktor reacts, looking down at the shoes and then at his socked feet. “Why would you ever think my feet were small? Oh my god. Is that what that narrow comment was about and why you kept trying to check my fingers?”

Yuuri hides his face in his palms: “Don’t even look at me. Just let me melt into the floor and die.”

Viktor keeps him from sliding down the bed.

“Nope!” Viktor laughs. “I like you too much for that.”

“Wait – so, we’re the same shoe size?” Yuuri gasps, head snapping up suddenly.

“I told you so!” Viktor says, pointedly. “I don’t have small feet. If anything, you have big feet for your frame.”

“Oh my god! That means I can fit into your skates!”

Viktor considers this statement briefly, “Oh sure – wait, where are you going?”

.

Okay, so Yuuri is out a lot of money for shoes that don’t fit Yuuri or Viktor (or Yuri, who apparently has clown feet way bigger than both of them and is overdue for a massive growth spurt, the poor kid). He also realizes that they don’t need to eat so much spinach after Viktor prints out information on rotating nutritional greens. The research on penis sizes and fingers, hands, and feet? – Still completely unreliable (and Viktor’s dick still seems to lean a little, but it’s fully functional, so whatever, right?) and unimportant now that they’ve moved to St. Petersburg and have tested the theory that feet size cannot determine dick size. Or, at least they figure that out when they measure against each other. They’re definitely different sizes.

Maybe they will or won’t live the same number of years…

But they’re going to live together, making the most of every second.

And, best part of it all: Yuuri fits perfectly into Viktor’s skates.

“Lapochka, can I have my skates back now?” Viktor whines.

Yuuri simply grins, “Just one more minute, okay?” – even though he definitely said that 30 minutes ago.

The End