Reigen was not sick.
He was just a little tired, just needed to make sure to drink some water later, just needed a breath of fresh air and he would be fine. Definitely.
He’d skipped breakfast that morning due to his lack of an appetite, and that was probably why he felt weird. Not sick at all; just weird.
The clamminess was him being his normal sweaty self; some people sweat in the winter, it wasn’t that big a deal. At least that’s what he kept telling himself as he adjusted his sticky collar.
He’d long since abandoned his feeble struggle to keep wearing his suit jacket, deciding he could put it back on if a client came in.
Besides; today Serizawa and Mob’s days off had overlapped, and he couldn’t simply leave the office unattended. All he had to do was sit here and schedule any walk-in clients to come back next week. He couldn’t afford to lose them, after all.
He figured opening the window behind him would be enough to help him power through... well, however many hours were left in the work day. He’d lost track a little while ago; looking at the clock took too much effort.
He stood up to open the window, and found himself swaying slightly. He’d only stood up too quickly, it was fine; the window was only a couple steps away, and- oh
...So maybe he was a little sick.
But that was fine, really, nothing he couldn’t handle for a bit before going home for the weekend. Wouldn’t be his first time powering through something like this, and it most likely wouldn’t be his last. He would be fine, he just needed to.. take a moment first.
Really, the floor was a lot more comfortable than it looked. He hadn’t slept well last night due to his definitely-not-a-sickness, and sitting here for a second probably wouldn’t hurt.
He glanced at the window he’d been aiming for- the bastardly thing was still closed. How rude.
He lamely stuck out a leg to push at it, and it opened about an inch before the sole of his shoe obnoxiously squeaked off the glass. He winced at the noise and let his leg fall back down. This was fine.
He was jolted back to the present by the sound of a door opening- shit. Laying on the floor wasn’t the best strategy for impressing clients.
He shot to his feet, slurring out half of his slogan- “Welcome to the Spirits and Su-uu-h-” before finding his vision going black, tipping forward once more.
Welp. Looks like this one won’t be a repeat client.
He braced himself for the impact of the floor, but instead found himself falling into something soft and warm- scratch that- some one soft and warm.
He looked blearily up at them and- “Serizawa?” What was he doing here?
“Ah-! Reigen-san, are you okay?” Serizawa looked anxious, like he’d be fluttering his hands about if he wasn’t holding him up.
Reigen blinked the residual darkness from the edges of his vision, pushing himself up. “Mm..Yeah, I’m fine, what’re you doing here?”
Reigen took note of Serizawa’s continued grip on his arms.
“I called you for something and you didn’t pick up, so I got a little worried, and I was already on this side of town anyways and-” Serizawa seemed to notice he was rambling, and cut it off with a question of his own. “Well, why were you on the floor?”
Reigen inwardly winced- so he hadn’t stood up fast enough, huh? “I was just, uh.. meditating.”
“..Right. Maybe you should meditate at home.”
“Ah- yeah- good idea, I’ll uh- do that later. When I get home.” Reigen fixed Seri with what he hoped was a confident smile, but it didn’t seem to work very well- he was looking at him skeptically.
Then he began to lean in. Reigen couldn’t back away, what with Serizawa’s hands still on his arms, and froze as their foreheads touched.
Serizawa pulled away a couple inches before he spoke. “Reigen-san, you have a fever.”
The muddled cogs in his head took a minute to turn. Seri had just been checking his temperature- nothing else.
He could only croak out a quiet “Ah,” in response, cheeks flushing.
And with that, Seri seemed to finally take note of their proximity and let go- jerking back as though he’d been burned.
Reigen found he missed the contact.
Apologies began to tumble from Serizawa’s mouth. “Oh! S-sorry, I just-”
Reigen cut him off from another bout of rambling with a wave of his hand. “It’s alright. I guess I really should get some rest, huh?”
No use protesting anymore; he’d clearly been caught.
Serizawa relaxed at that. “Yeah.”
Reigen turned to grab his suit jacket from where he’d tossed it over the arm of his chair, listening to Serizawa talk.
“I think.. maybe I should uh, walk you home? I mean, you passed out twice, and I don’t.. I think maybe you need someone to keep an eye on you.”
Did he just invite himself over?
Reigen turned back around, smiling a little. “My, aren’t you forward today?"
He watched for a minute, amused, as Serizawa tripped over his words even more. He couldn’t help the quiet laugh he let out, waving his hand once more.
“It’s all right, Serizawa, it was a joke. I’d appreciate the company.” The walk home, though fairly short, seemed daunting by himself today.
Serizawa visibly relaxed, appraising him for a second before letting out his own soft laugh. “Yeah, okay.”
Reigen finished up gathering his things (with Serizawa anxiously hovering the whole time) and they locked up, setting off.
They didn’t talk much, though Serizawa watched him like a hawk, arms shooting out every time he stumbled over a crack or a bump in the pavement. Though, he couldn’t really complain; he probably would have eaten shit a few of those times if Serizawa hadn’t caught him.
Though that didn’t make it any less embarrassing.
By the time they got to his apartment, Reigen was thoroughly exhausted.
He struggled with his keys for a moment before dropping them, and stared blearily down where they landed, wondering if he could just sleep by his front door.
Serizawa graciously picked them up and unlocked the door, ushering Reigen inside.
Reigen flopped over onto the nearest available surface- his couch- and sighed quietly as he sank into it. He wasn’t aware he dozed off until he woke to Serizawa gently shaking him.
“Here, take these.” Serizawa handed him some pills and a cup of water, which he accepted gratefully. He then found himself being laid back down, and a damp rag placed on his forehead.
Serizawa placed a hand on his cheek and he leaned into it, closing his eyes. It felt nice. Cool, soft-
“How do you feel?”
The hand on his face stilled, and Reigen cracked an eye open. Serizawa’s face glowed a brilliant red.
“Y’okay?” Reigen opened his other eye, struggling up just enough to make the rag slip before he was guided back down by a gentle hand on his chest.
“More than okay, Reigen. You get some rest, alright?”
Reigen hummed, his eyes slipping back shut. “M’kay. G’night, see ya...”
And with a quiet sigh, he slipped back off into sleep.
When he awoke again, he did so slowly.
He snuggled into his pillow, and then paused. He didn’t recall going to bed yesterday. Actually, he couldn’t recall a good portion of yesterday.
Through the lingering haze of his fever, he slowly registered that he was still wearing his suit pants. No shirt, though.
He struggled a moment longer before remembering that Serizawa had come home with him yesterday. Was he still here?
Reluctantly, he climbed out from under the blanket and stood, dragging the sheet up around his bare shoulders.
After a long stretch that popped his back, he shuffled out the door, taking in his surroundings. Serizawa sat at the couch reading, and the scent of food hung nicely in the air.
Had he cooked something?
He shuffled the rest of the way to the couch, and plopped down next to Seri who gave him a gentle smile.
“Good morning Reigen-san, how are you feeling?”
Reigen almost spat out his routine “fine, never been better, yadda yadda” before pausing. This was Serizawa. He could trust Serizawa.
“I… not my best, but definitely better than before. Thank you, Serizawa.”
He blushed lightly and looked back down. “Ah- that’s good. No need to thank me though, I didn’t do much.”
Reigen grinned and lightly elbowed him in the ribs. “Aw, come on big guy, let me give you credit where it’s due,”
Serizawa blushed harder. “T-thank you.. Or, I mean, You’re welcome.” He perked up a second later. “Oh! I made eggs. You should eat, it’s important when you’re sick.”
Reigen smiled softly and watched Serizawa trot off to his small kitchen. He pulled his feet up onto the couch and curled up. He felt- absurdly happy.
He couldn’t remember the last time he’d felt this warm and fuzzy inside, especially in his own apartment, which was always empty besides him.
Serizawa came back in with a bowl and some water and handed them to him before settling back into the couch next to him.
Reigen clicked on the tv to fill the silence, idly watching the weather while he poked at the eggs. He was attempting to go slow, due to both the fact that he was sick, and that all he had yesterday was a couple granola bars at the office.
He did not want to make himself throw up, thank you very much.
Eventually he finished and found himself sliding lower and lower into the couch, once more exhausted. Serizawa must have noticed his feeble attempts to stay upright because he put an arm around him, pulling Reigen against himself and letting him nod off on his side.
He woke up once more, later in the morning, and found himself still curled up beside Serizawa- who was dozing quietly. Though he was more so on top of Serizawa than next to him now.
The sheet had fallen off at some point and was lying on the floor, but Serizawa’s arm kept him warm just fine.
Just as the thought crossed his mind, Serizawa made a soft noise and shifted- and Reigen was suddenly acutely aware that he was shirtless, clinging to Seri’s arm, and cuddling him.
When Serizawa spoke, his voice was thick with sleep, and that did funny things to Reigen’s stomach.
“Did you sleep well, Reigen-san?”
Reigen cleared his throat, all too aware of himself. His body, how he looked, how he laid- man, he was even starting to ramble like Serizawa. What was he, some kind of kid with a crush?
“Yeah! Yes, I slept well, thank you,” His face heated up and he blamed it on his fever.
Serizawa reached out and felt his forehead. “Feel’s like your fever’s gone down, that’s good!”
“Yeah, thank you Serizawa. It was… nice being taken care of,” His face heated up further at this admission, but fuck it, he was feeling mushy.
Though he wasn’t looking at him, he could practically hear Serizawa’s blush as he spoke. “Of course! You, you’re uh- important to me.”
Okay, this was too many feelings for Reigen now. Time to deflect.
“Course, who else would sign your paychecks?” He laughed with an edge of nervousness.
Serizawa didn’t respond, and when Reigen looked back up he was looking at him with… pity?
Reigen tensed slightly. He didn’t want pity. Serizawa was supposed to laugh- this wasn’t going according to plan.
“Reigen-san, I mean it. I care about you."
“I.. care about you too, Serizawa.” Probably more than he should. More than was good for him and his stupid, stupid heart.
Serizawa took his hand. “You’ve helped me so much and I just, I could never repay you.” He paused, and then realization dawned on his face. “Not that- I’m not saying I did it because I owe you, I mean- I don’t think I owe you, I-”
Reigen squeezed his hand, quieting him. “Thank you.”
The words came out softer, more loaded than he’d meant them to.
Serizawa smiled. “You’ve gotta believe me when I say you’re a good person, and a good.. friend. I know you aren’t the best with compliments, but they’re true.”
Being so open like this left him shaky and clammy- but not in the same way he was yesterday. Not only was he emotionally bare, but physically as well, still missing his damn shirt. But he could tell this was important to Serizawa, so he could deal with it.
Well, at least in his own Reigen-esque way.
He let a smile grace his face. “Damn Serizawa, at least let a man get his shirt on before you get to the heavy stuff,”
Serizawa smiled in return, surprisingly wide as a playful twinkle lit in his eye. “Maybe I like you like this,”
The retort Reigen had loaded stuck in his throat. “I- ah- you-”
Serizawa laughed and pulled Reigen closer by their linked hands, though he didn’t seem to realize he did.
The laughter was infectious, and Reigen found himself leaning into Serizawa, laughing with him.
He was sure he looked like an absolute mess, having not touched his hair since waking up and still running a mild fever, but he somehow found himself believing Serizawa when he complimented him.
Something about the man was always just so sincere.
Reigen sighed, his laughter calming, and let his gaze linger on Serizawa.
Serizawa looked down at him, and grinned even wider, and Reigen’s heart skipped a beat.
He’d offhandedly thought the man was attractive before, he couldn't deny that, but seeing him so openly and unabashedly happy was something else entirely.
Before he could help himself he found the words pouring from his mouth: “I think you’re cute too,”
Serizawa looked startled, and then self conscious. He averted his eyes, and Reigen decided to push his boundaries, scooting even closer.
“I mean what I’m saying, too.”
Serizawa paused, and seemed to consider his next words, which was- slightly out of the normal for him. In this context, at least. In moments like these his mouth usually worked faster than his head, and he would stumble after himself to fix any errors in what he’d said.
When he next spoke it was something Reigen had definitely not expected to hear.
“You scared me, you know.”
Reigen tipped his head forward a bit, encouraging Serizawa to keep going.
“W- when I walked in, and you were just- so out of it. I was worried something happened while I was gone.”
He laughed quietly, shyly. “I didn’t even actually need anything. I just.. missed you, and so I decided to call. But then you didn’t pick up, and you always pick up.” He shifted a little. “I called you two more times, and still no answer, so I.. I just went ahead and went looking for you.”
Had he called three times? Reigen hadn’t even noticed his phone ringing- and it had been in his pocket. He didn’t think he was that far gone.
“And you just- you could hardly speak right, and you kept trying to say everything was fine, but you didn’t look like you were all there and it was scary and-”
He looked at Reigen again. “It.. it’s okay to ask for help, Reigen. You’ve told me that.. a lot of times, but I don’t think you let that apply to yourself, really.”
Reigen found himself fidgeting again. Here came more emotions.
“I.. yeah. Thanks Serizawa, I’ll.. remember that.” He was startled to find himself choked up.
“I care about you, Reigen, I really, really care about you.”
Oh boy. More emotions.
“S-so I’ve heard,” Reigen laughed weakly. It was a poor attempt at a joke, but he really didn’t know how else to respond.
Other people’s emotions he could handle. People’s emotions about other people he could handle.
People’s emotions about him? Well, that was a whole different ball game.
“ Reigen .” Serizawa sounded alarmingly stern.
Serizawa had taken his face between his hands, and before Reigen could get another word out, he found their faces smashed together.
He made a quiet, startled noise, and before he could try to reciprocate Seri was gone and far away.
He blinked dumbly at the empty space where Serizawa had just sat, and then looked up to where he now stood.
“Oh my god Reigen I’m so sorry that was inappropriate and I-”
“-and you’re my boss, oh my god, I should have asked first- no, I shouldn’t have even thought-”
Seri cut off what sounded like an anxiety attack in progress, and looked down at Reigen.
“Yes, you should have asked-”
“ I’msorryIwon’tdoitagain- ”
“BUT-” Reigen held up his hand, motioning for Seri to listen to him. “It’s okay. I- I, uh… It was nice. And I’d- like to do it again.”
Realization slowly dawned on Serizawa’s face.
“Wow.” Serizawa barely breathed the word, and Reigen giggled quietly despite himself.
“Yeah. So if you would-” Reigen motioned to the spot next to him.
Serizawa nodded, not taking his eyes off Reigen, and sat down next to him.
This time it was Reigen’s hands that found Serizawa’s face, and he guided them gently together.
It was nothing more than a chaste press of lips against lips, stiff and unmoving, but it was still nice.
He pulled back and looked at a starry-eyed Serizawa.
“I- yeah, we.. we’re good.”
Reigen smiled slightly. “Not gonna bolt on me again?”
Serizawa laughed quietly. “No, not gonna bolt."
And with that, he brought their faces together again, letting his head tilt to the side to deepen the kiss.
Serizawa’s lips were soft, and warm, and Reigen had a flash of self-consciousness over his own probably chapped lips. The thought soon left his mind when he felt Serizawa’s lips part against his own.
He let his own mouth open in return, and then it was… a little bit less chaste.
And also incredibly amazing.
They soon parted, breathing heavily, neither too ready to go farther than this for now.
Serizawa swallowed and spoke quietly. “That was…”
“Yeah,” Reigen smiled softly. “yeah.”
He sighed and leaned into Serizawa’s chest, a wave of exhaustion hitting his still-sick body. “I’d be all for continuing, but also I might just fall asleep on you."
Serizawa chuckled. “Alright, let’s get you to bed,”
Reigen moved to stand but instead found himself scooped up by Serizawa. Startled (and flustered) by the sudden display of strength, he threw his arms around Serizawa’s neck.
Serizawa smirked, all to happy with himself. “What? How’d you think I got you into bed last night?”
Reigen laughed. “Should I be worried about the state of my shirt?”
Serizawa grinned. “If I hurt it I’ll give you one of mine. Besides, you’d look great in a boyfriend shirt.”
Reigen hated how much he loved that idea.
He tried to make a wisecrack in return but found himself yawning instead.
Serizawa smiled and set him down on the bed, then sat next to him, and Reigen found himself grateful that he didn’t leave.
If he was left alone he’d probably convince himself this was all some fever dream.
He took Serizawa’s hand, and with one final tired smile up at his boyfriend- (the word gave him a quiet thrill)- he closed his eyes and let himself drift away to sleep off the final dregs of his fever.
And when he woke up later that day, Serizawa would still be there with open arms and a smile, and Reigen would find himself happier than he’s been in a long, long time.