Me and Hizashi are sitting next to the aisle. Hitoshi is sitting next to me and Eri next to Hizashi. Hizashi is squeezing Eri’s hand. I didn’t know he was afraid of flying.
“It’s okay, papa, I’ll keep you safe!”
I smile at Eri’s attempt to calm him down and look at Hitoshi. He’s already turned on some movie. We have about eight hours left of the flight, I might as well sleep for a while. I get my neck pillow and eye mask from my bag and wrap the blanket we all got in little plastic bags around me. I poke Hitoshi.
“Wake me up if they come with food or coffee.”
We’ve dressed in way too warm clothes for the weather in Fiji. We’ve been outside for barely five minutes, and I’m already sweating. Eri insisted on pulling her own bag, but she’s not doing too well. We’re waiting for the taxi sent out by the hotel outside the airport. Eri is sitting on top of her bag. Hitoshi is removing the hoodie he wore on the plane. No one here speaks Japanese, so Hizashi has to do all the speaking. I mean, Hitoshi does speak some English, but I do not remember anything from high school. Eri is too young to have English classes. A taxi stops in front of us and the driver asks us something in english.
I look at Hizashi. I have no idea what he just said. Hizashi starts talking to the chauffeur for a moment before he turns to us.
“It’s our taxi. Come on, let’s go!”
The driver gets out of the car and starts loading our bags in the back while we get seated. Eri gets to sit in the middle, since she’s the smallest. Me and Hitoshi sit on either side of her. Hizashi gets to sit next to the driver, since he’s the one who can communicate. He’s still speaking with the driver as they enter the taxi. I understand a couple of simple words, like “ten” and “Wednesday”. I have no idea what they’re actually talking about. Eri tugs at my sleeve.
“What are they talking about?”
“I have no idea.”
We’re all getting dressed in lighter clothes in our hotel rooms. Me and Hizashi shares a room, and Hitoshi and Eri shares the room next door. I’m borrowing a lot of clothes from Hizashi, since most of my clothes I own is black or grey. I didn’t think that’d be very fitting for a vacation to Fiji. Hizashi suddenly turns around to me.
“What do you think?”
He’s wearing a pair of wide, high-waisted pants and a red shirt, completely unbuttoned.
“Hizashi. I love you, but please, button your shirt. You can not walk around looking like that.”
“Aw, come on, don’t you like it?”
“Hizashi we are eating dinner with our children and a lot of other people. Button your shirt.”
I’m borrowing a shirt with pineapples on it and a pair of blue shorts. It feels weird to wear… color that isn’t dark blue.
“I think your shirt might be a bit too small for me.”
I can’t seem to close the last two buttons. Hizashi is a lot skinnier than I am, since he doesn’t need a lot of hand to hand combat, and therefore not a lot of muscle. I, however, rely a lot on hand to hand combat. My arms and chest are a lot larger than his.
“Well… just leave them open then.”
“You can see half of my chest, ‘Zashi!”
“No, you can see your neck and collarbones. Not half your chest. You’re such a prude, Sho, you need to relax a bit!”
“I’m not a prude, I just don’t like showing skin!”
“So a prude.”
I sigh and keep the last two buttons unbuttoned like he said. The shorts are slightly tight but I can still wear them. Just wearing shorts feels weird. I never show my legs outside my house. I catch myself fidgeting with my ring. I never wear jewelry either. But this is not the same, this is something else.
“Did you… did you like the ring?”
“Did I- oh Sho of course I did! Why wouldn’t I?”
“I don’t know, it’s very visible. And your fans might-”
“I don’t care if my fans find out that I’m married, even less that I’m married to a man. I don’t care if less people listen to my show or follow me on instagram or twitter. I don’t need people who dislike me in my life anyways.”
He puts a hand on my cheek and moves a strand of my hair with the other. His hands are so soft, unlike mine which are rough from years of fighting.
“The ring is gorgeous, my love. I wouldn’t change it for anything in the world.”
He caresses my cheek with his thumb.
“...also you look really cute in those shorts…”
“And you ruined the moment. Great.”
“What? It’s the truth!”
He kisses my cheek before letting go.
“Will you shave before we leave? Pretty please? Your cheeks are rough and uncomfortable to kiss.”
“You should have thought about that before you married me, you fucking banana.”
“Hey! I haven’t had my hair up for like… twenty-four hours!”
“Wow, a new personal record.”
“You’re being rude.”
“Another thing you signed up for when you married me.”
“I didn’t marry you, Nemuri drove me with a blindfold and suddenly I’m walking down the aisle!”
“Don’t lie to me, banana man, you enjoyed it.”
“No I didn’t.”
“Yes you did.”
“Yes I did.”
“Stupid banana, can’t even lie properly.”
I stand on my tiptoes and kiss his cheek.
“I’ll shave just for you.”
I grab the bag with my razor and toothbrush and all that stuff and walk inside the bathroom. There’s a couple of small tubes with shaving cream along with soap, shampoo and conditioner. I put some shaving cream in my hand before applying it to my cheeks. I hate shaving. It’s boring and takes a lot of time.
“Get in here!”
I slowly pull the razor down my cheek and wipe off the excess shing cream. Hizashi enters the room.
“Ho ho ho, Merry Christmas.”
“What are you talking about?”
“You look like Santa.”
“Make up your mind, do you want me to have a beard or not?”
“Well it depends on if you’re gonna grow a full beard or just keep it like… this.”
“Says the man who can only grow facial hair in two spots under his nose.”
“Stop bullying me! Why did you want me to come in here anyways?”
“Can you sing for me? I never get to hear you sing anymore.”
“Oh, okay then…”
He starts singing a song in english. I don’t understand the words, but they sound pretty.
“Won’t you sing for me, songbird? Sing for the lonely ones? Sing me away from here with the words of the broken?”
He wraps his arms around my stomach and closes his eyes.
“You can fly where I can not fly. Sing for me songbird. Sing.”
His voice is so soft, like honey. He used to sing for me a lot more in high school but now… he barely does it anymore. I guess he doesn’t have that much time.
“You should sing more often.”
“You think so?”
“Maybe do it on your radio show sometime. I bet your listeners would love it.”
I can see his cheeks getting red through the mirror.
“Even if I don’t understand the words, your voice is still beautiful. Today’s music is just J-pop and K-pop anyways.”
“You don’t listen to music, Sho. There’s more than just J-pop and K-pop.”
“Not on the radio. You should play other genres on your show too. Maybe your listeners wouldn’t appreciate it that much, but I’m a listener too, you know?”
“You’re too sweet. You have shaving cream on your nose.”