After graduating university, it really didn’t take long for Oikawa’s volleyball career to truly take off. Given his impressive performances while in school, talent scouts had been keeping an eye on him. While he did get a degree in education, his only true career in his mind was professional volleyball.
When the first offer arrived, Oikawa cried. He took the first train home to Miyagi, to celebrate, to tell his family and friends the news. Of course, no one doubted that Oikawa would get something given how hard he worked, his history, his obvious devotion to the sport. Still, it was a relief when he did start getting formal offers to play for various teams. Yes, plural. After the first letter, there were a couple more.
Oikawa was not just wanted. He was being fought over. Iwaizumi reminded him to not get a big head about it, but it was obvious he was just saying it. The pride that radiated off his boyfriend was nothing short of radiant.
He had to do his research on the various teams, seeing who the coaches were, the other team members, their ranking, their location. Ultimately, Oikawa knew that he could get along with whatever team members he wound up with, whatever coach he got would push him to his best, and that ranking didn’t matter since he’d bring them up anyway… So it ultimately came down to location.
Iwaizumi and he had talked about it, once the second offer came in.
“Go with whatever team is best.” Iwaizumi had told him, lounging in Oikawa’s room like he had for years. His back was against the wall, relaxed on Oikawa’s bed. A familiar sight. “I can see you overthinking it. Just go with your gut. You haven’t been wrong before. Don’t rush in, sure, but… trust your instincts.”
Oikawa frowned. “What makes you think I’m overthinking?” He asked, deflecting Iwaizumi’s obvious and legitimate concern.
Iwaizumi rolled his eyes. “Your nails are bitten down too far. You only do that when you’re really stressed out. So stop stressing. Or at least tell me what’s making you so anxious.” Despite his gruffness, there was genuine worry in his voice.
A pause. “Most of the teams are far away. Further than Tokyo.”
Iwaizumi waited, expecting Oikawa to say more. When he didn’t, he tilted his head. “That’s it?”
Oikawa’s frown deepened. “Iwa-chan, this is serious!”
“No, yeah, I know it is. I’m just… you’re seriously putting that much thought into it? You’re basically already moved out from here anyway.” Iwaizumi reminded as he motioned to the room. Most of it had already been cleared out, Oikawa had moved most of it to his apartment in Tokyo. It still had his bed and desk but anything personal was long gone by now. “And your parents won’t mind. I mean, not to speak for them but. They know how important volleyball is to you. They may not see you as often but they’d be happy and supportive of you anyway.”
Oikawa nodded, idly picking at the corner of his phone case. Clearly that wasn’t it, Iwaizumi noted. “What else is on your mind?”
Oikawa smiled, that sad and empty smile that Iwaizumi despised. Iwaizumi shifted, now sitting on the edge of the bed, in case he had to get up in case Oikawa decided to run from the conversation or needed a hug. Or both.
“Isn’t it obvious?” He asked, looking Iwaizumi in the eye for the first time since the conversation began. Before Iwaizumi could answer, Oikawa continued. “This isn’t just for school anymore. It’ll be… for the foreseeable future. I won’t be able to come home as often or have as much time off. I’ll be far away from here… from you .”
“Tooru,” Iwaizumi reached his hand out. Oikawa got up and took it wordlessly, sitting in his boyfriend’s lap. Their fingers laced together as Iwaizumi craned his neck up so he could press their foreheads together. “You lovable moron.” He smiled. “Why are you worrying about that, sweetheart? We’ve done this for a few years now. Distance has nothing on us.”
Oikawa’s lower lip trembled. “But… but our schedules will be different again. And we don’t have the guarantees of weekends and holidays and breaks. And-”
Iwaizumi cupped Oikawa’s face with one hand while the other squeezed Oikawa’s gently. “Babe. We started dating when we were both still in school. Our second year. We both didn’t know what the future would hold but we made that call that winter to get together despite the distance between us… And even when I stopped going to school, we stayed together because we made it work. We made our schedules work. We made time for each other. And… yeah. It was hard at times. But I didn’t confess to you in hopes that you’d, what, transfer schools so we’d be closer. I didn’t hold out through the distance so you could move back to Miyagi after you graduated. I confessed because I liked you. I stayed with you because I love you. I’m here for you regardless of where you are. So if that’s a component of your stress, let it go, okay? We’ll make it work like we always have. You have your dream , Tooru. Don’t get yourself so wrapped up in your own head that you miss out on it.”
At some point, Oikawa started crying from relief. He had been so worried that Iwaizumi wouldn’t want him, that the distance would be too much, even when he was trying so hard to line the pieces of his life up. And to have Iwaizumi do what he always did, to pull him in and unravel his anxious-entwined thoughts and tell him exactly what he needed to hear… It was middle school all over again. He felt invincible. They were invincible.
And that was that.
With the air cleared, Oikawa could properly handle his research with laser focus. He spent hours upon hours over the different teams, making pros and cons lists, spreadsheets, anything to help organize his thoughts.
Ultimately, he decided on the team in Tokyo. Ironically, they weren’t exactly the best in the league but… Oikawa was trusting his gut on this one. This was the team. His team.
He called Iwaizumi as soon as he decided, despite it being four in the morning.
Iwaizumi answered, his voice thick with sleep. “Are you okay?”
Of course that’d be the first thing he’d ask.
“I’m perfect, Iwa-chan.” Oikawa replied as he finally set his laptop aside and crawled into bed. “I decided.”
“On?” Iwaizumi asked, his mind not entirely awake. A moment passed before it clicked. “Oh. That’s great babe. Where?”
“Tokyo.” The grin was evident in his voice. “I’ll be staying here in Tokyo. I have a good feeling.”
Iwaizumi hummed before he yawned. “That’s good. Trust your gut. You sound happy.”
Oikawa laughed a little, part delirium and part relief. “I am Iwa-chan. I am.”
“Good. Now go the fuck to sleep and we can call when it’s a decent hour.”