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Illusion of Divine Control

Chapter Text

Study nights were when Ritsu came closest to mass murder.

Emi was the only semi-competent one in the group, and the few times Takenaka had shown up, he had proven to be a quick learner. Tome, Ichi, and Tenga, on the other hand.


"I can and will leave right now if you three don't pay attention." Ritsu sighed, pinching the bridge of his nose. He could feel the irritation building in his shoulders and the stress trickling down his spine. Lord, he would either need a drink or partake in a particularly destructive hobby if he could get through this last essay worksheet. Emi had already escaped for the evening, and with it approaching eleven-thirty, Ritsu was desperate to be alone.


"Aw, come on, Ritsu, we can finish tomorrow. Come with us to Asahi's party!" Ichi stood while shoving all her papers, pencils, and books into an already overstuffed bag. Ritsu's' eye twitched. God, he hated parties.


"Fine. You can go, I might stop by later it depends."


"Ritsu, you are officially the most goody two shoes I have ever met." Tome stuck her tongue out, slinging her messenger bag on her shoulder. 


"Tome a dollar for overused descriptors." Ritsu had made over one hundred dollars off of Tome alone for calling him; goody two shoes, nerd, and bookworm. It was a deal he, Tome, and Ichi had made when they met for the second official study night. 


"Ichi, you got a dollar I can borrow?" Tome rolled her eyes at Ritsu and held out her palm toward Ichi. Predictably Ichi had a dollar; she knew the price of making fun of Ritsu, and sometimes she found it was worth it. The three left Ritsu and the study room laughing and jostling each other. Ritsu decided he needed a drink. 

******

Ashais' house was packed.  As it happens, the house is lived in by five students, but Ashai was the one who had the fake ID, so when one of the roommates wanted to throw a party, and there would be alcohol, people called it Ashais' party. Ritsu physically winced as he saw someone puke behind the sofa. He had couch surfed for a bit when he moved to the city for school, and he had stayed on that couch the longest. 


"Little bro! You made it!" Teru slung a neon glitter-covered arm around Ritsu taking a swig of what was probably sickly sweet tub juice. 


"Not for long. I just came to get a drink." One-touch and Teru's glitter was all over Ritsus sweatshirt. Damn, he hated parties. 


"Fine fine," Teru peeled himself off Ritsu and meandered to the kitchen. "We've got tub juice, vodka, and someone brought beer."

If Teru hadn't slammed his head into the wall when he leaned against it, he could have passed for just buzzed. Ritsu grabbed a plastic cup from the cabinet above the sink and filled the bottom with vodka. He wouldn't be sober tonight, but he also refused to act like that. Ritsu watched Teru walk towards a group of people outside the kitchen and barely miss running into the doorway, then start to tip over only to catch himself and continue socializing as if none of it had happened. Ritsu chugged his cup and shivered. After shuffling around in the fridge and ending up finishing a half-eaten can of pears, Ritsu made his way to the living room where most of the people were. Music contorted around the conversations, and Ritsu could pick out the more than ten or so party crashers. Perfect. Empty cup in hand, Ritsu swayed to the music inching to the outer edge of a group of first-timers. They stood out with nervous smiles and slurred laughs that were just a little too loud. Just as Ritsu was about to seamlessly join the group, one of the others started singing. Then they all did. Not the song playing, of course not, they started wailing some song they had all learned in elementary. Ritsu skittered away, as loud and overwhelming as the entire party was that was just beyond what he was able to handle.

A hand grabbed his elbow as Ritsu moved between groups. An older classmate, probably a Junior, smirked at him. Oh?


'Let's see where this goes.'


"Hey." Ritsu returned the smirk.


"Wanna go to the roof?" The older man gestured to a joint half-concealed in his pocket.


'Ugh gross.'


"Sure." 


Turns out 'the roof' was just the balcony off of the master bedroom. The upperclassmen closed the sliding glass door behind them. He slunk over to the edge and sank, setting his cup down. Ritsu slowly sat after him. As Ritsu watched, the guy lit the joint and took a deep pull. Then blew the smoke in Ritsu's face.


'Is this supposed to impress me?' Ritsu held back a grimace.


"Here." The Junior held the joint out. Fucking hell, Ritsu hated parties. 


"I'm good!" Ritsu waved him off. 


"Well, then how about," He reached in his coat and pulled out one of the half-emptied bottles of vodka from downstairs. "This?" 


"Sure." Ritsu held out his cup and let the upperclassmen fill it halfway. 


'No way I'm drinking all this.' Ritsu took a sip and hid behind his cup to gag. 


"So," The older man filled his cup halfway and took a huge swig. "You go to the university?"


"Yeah, you?" 


"Not really. Used to but not anymore." Another swig.


"Oh? What'd you major in?" 


"Started in business, then tried an art degree. What about you?" Another swig.


"Political Science." A sip.


"Ah-Ha! I thought ya looked like a nerd!" A swig.


'Dollar for an overused descriptor idiot' Ritsu frowned. The upperclassman didn't notice.


"Hmm. Hey, you know what? Let's get outta here." The Junoir stood teetered then gave Ritsu a wobbly half-lidded look.


'Oh. He's already drunk. Alright.' Ritsu set down his still full cup and stood holding out his arm to steady the lurching man.


"Alright, let's go. My place is close by."


'It isn't.'


"Sure thing!" Ritsu scrunched his nose as the older man breathed vodka infused pot vapors in his face.

 

*****

 

Ritsu really had to stop doing this in the alley between the school and the river as simple as it was to be able to wash the blood down into the water and hike back across the campus to his apartment. 


'Not that I'm hiding that much.'


He had passed by Teru on his way out with the upperclassman, and Teru had asked him where he was headed.


"I'm just gonna go kill this guy and head home. See you tomorrow!"


Teru had laughed.


The upperclassman hadn't made a sound as Ritsu sliced open his neck, ear to ear, with the envelope opener now staining the inside of his pocket. The drunk ones always bled more, and he expected that as alcohol is a blood thinner, so Ritsus sweatshirt was now covered in not only Terus' glitter but also this guy's blood. It smelled sharp and overwhelming. It pulled something dark and dangerous out of him, something that made Ritsu feel powerful. Made him feel in control and quelled the unease and tension he held in his neck and hands.


"Why are you so fucking heavy?" Ritsu murmured, dragging the body out of the alley and pulling it onto his shoulders. Carrying it like it was a drunk friend, he was giving a piggyback ride to — a bloody friend. Ritsu started down the empty street, walking toward the privet shipyard on the riverbank. Down the road through a gaping hole in the fence up a few shipping containers, and Ritsu was in arms reach of the water. 
The body slapped the water and sunk, leaving trails of blood swirling in the current. Then another slap.


"The fuck?" Ritsu whispered, looking up frantically. There on the stack of shipping containers next to his one container up. There was someone else. And from the looks of it, they had also just thrown a body in the river.


"Hey!" It was a boy about Ritsus' age. He waved down to Ritsu before crouching and leaping down to where Ritsu was.
Covered in blood, just like Ritsu, his eyes glowed with exuberance. He had brilliant orange hair that stuck up like he was wired with electricity. He was breathtaking. 


"Hey there! I'm Shou! You dumping a body too?" And an idiot.


"Uh yeah." 


"Cool! Was it alcohol poisoning? His blood reeks. Oh wait, I bet it was a car accident, but you don't have car insurance, so you had to get rid of your dear friend otherwis- Oh wait! I got a better one!"


"Nah," Ritsu shrugged him off and grinned darkly. "I slit his throat with a letter opener." Shou's smile and eyes widened.


"Oh! Wow!" He strolled closer to Ritsu until he was almost toe to toe with him. He smelled like blood and orange zest.


"Hey uh Pretty Boy, you've got glitter on your shoulder," Shou laughed before looking at Ritsu with his piercing blue eyes. "It kinda takes away from this amazing, dangerous aura you've got going on." Ritsu frowned slightly.


"What?"


"I said you've got-"


"Yeah, no, I heard that i meant what did you call me?"


If it were possible to smile any wider Shou did.


"I called you Pretty Boy!" 


"Oh. Well, Shou, if you must know, I was at a party earlier, and some idiot was doused in glitter, and it got everywhere." Shou turned and looked out over the water.


His cheeks are covered in freckles. They danced across his face like constellations.


"Well, Pretty Boy, I think I'm gonna sit here for a while. Have fun at your party." Shou sat on the edge of the shipping container feet dangling, kicking the side with a hollow thunk.


"Oh, uh ok." Ritsu paused and sat down next to him. Shou startled and looked at him for a moment. Ritsu closed his eyes and let the breeze coming off the water caress him. As energetic and hectic as Shous' aura was, it was nice to sit here with him. When Ritsu opened his eyes, Shou was still staring at him, an odd look frolicking across his face.


"I snapped his neck. The guy I threw in the river. I snapped his neck and removed his teeth and fingers." Shou pinched his face like he was worried Ritsu would yell or worse report him. Ritsu smirked at him 


"Sounds smart. No identification."


There was a pause before Shou burst out laughing like a madman.


"Pretty Boy, you're interesting! I like you!" Ritsu rolled his eyes and bit back a smile.


"Don't call me that." Now Shou had a turn to roll his eyes.


"Well, then what's your name?"


"Ritsu."


"Well, Ritsu I'm planning a party, its right here right now you wanna come?" Shou reclined propping his hands behind his head and looked up at Ritsu.


"Sure." Ritsu smiled at him and looked up at the sky, leaning back, propping himself up with his arms. So they stayed there like that, two boys covered in blood staring at the sky, searching for shooting stars and ignoring the world outside of the shipyard.


God, Ritsu, loved parties.

Chapter Text

Ritsu honestly hadn't been out looking for someone to kill. The evening had started only slightly more stressful than usual; the study group had collectively realized at midnight that the library had closed, and none of them owned a printer. So Ritsu, the three idiots, and Takenaka piled into Tome's rickety little Subaru and skittered across the city to the only printing place still open. They got there at one in the morning. Ritsu had a throbbing headache, and the tension in his neck started crawling down his back. But it was okay; he just needed a second to himself.


"Ritsu! Yours is done! You ready to go?" Ichi waved to Ritsu from inside the shop. He took a deep breath of the night air; there was no way in hell he was getting back in that car for another hour.


"Yeah go ahead, I've got to get a few things while I'm up here. I'll grab an uber later." Ritsu shoved his hands in his pockets.


"Are you sure?" She had looked hesitantly out into the night.


"Yeah, what's the worst that could happen on a Tuesday night?" Hed practically invited trouble.


It must have been the guys first time holding someone up because between his shaking and stuttering, Ritsu had ample opportunity to pull out his letter opener, kick the knife out of the guy's hand and slice through his neck. Traditionally Ritsu would cut from behind, better leverage, and you avoid most of the initial blood gushing. He also usually wore darker clothes, easier to get blood stains out.


"Fuck." Ritsu pulled his sweater away from his body as it dripped. Red does not come out of heather grey as well. Hopefully, the trains were still running because there was no way he could get a ride while dripping everywhere. 


'Now what to do with this...' Ritsu glared down at the body crumpled on the ground.


"Pretty Boy?" The voice made Ritsu snap his head up. On the roof of the apartment complex, the attempted mugging had taken place near, was what could only be Shou. He was the only one who could move down the fire escape as swiftly as this shadow was, and he was the only one who called Ritsu Pretty Boy.


"Shou?" He watched Shou jump off the ladder on the fire escape and land right in front of him. A dazzling grin pulled at his freckles.


"Hey, Pretty Boy! Another friend of yours?" Shou nodded at the sprawling body.


"Heh yeah, sure."


"What happened?" 


"He tried to mug me." Shou frowned. If Ritsu looked, he'd see something dark swirling behind Shou's sharp blue eyes.


"Oh? Need some help?"


"Yeah, actually! I gotta get this to the train to get back across town." Ritsu nudged the body's arm with his foot. Shou leaned down and poked a puddle of blood.


"Why? If you need it, I've got a place we could take it like fifteen minutes by train from here." He grinned up at Ritsu rubbing bloody fingertips together.


"Are you sure? Why?" Ritsu shifted back.


'Is this a trap?'


Shou stood, wiping his hand on his jeans, leaving red streaks.


"You're smart, Pretty Boy. Figure it out," Shou motioned to the body.


"grab his shoulders; there's a train station down the street."


'What does that even mean?' Ritsu furrowed his brow and pulled an arm around his shoulder. 

*****


It had to be a peculiar sight, Ritsu covered in blood, Shou with his brilliant red hair on end, and the body in between with its toes dragging and covered in blood. And if either of other riders on the train had a problem, they were probably too drunk or high to say anything much less stop the trio when they stumbled off. Shou nodded, leading Ritsu to an empty lot snug between two office buildings. Dropping the body, Ritsu followed Shou as he dug around in a pile of what appeared to be junk.


"Here." Ritsu caught the shovel Shou threw.


"Are you kidding me?"


'I knew he was an idiot, but this is too much.'

 

"Nope! You know how to throw off cadaver dogs, right?"

 

'Oh. Yeah, of course.'


"Yeah." Ritsu started digging.


It took two and a half hours. It was four in the morning. Ritsu was so lucky his first class on Wednesdays started at noon.


"I'm glad I ran into you. I found this poor guy on the side of the road and wanted to give him a proper burial." They had dug a hole so that the body was buried feet first standing with a solid four feet of dirt before what could pass as a shallow grave. Shou had a raccoon wrapped carefully in a tarp he set in the hole. He stayed on his knees a moment it looked like he was praying.


"Alright! That was fun!" Shou hopped up, grinning wildly. "What's next?" Ritsu paused.


"Uh, well, I'm gonna go home and try to sleep before my class at noon." Shou's smile drooped a bit.


"But um you could come by, if you want, I've got stain remover if you wanna try and salvage those jeans." God Ritsu would kill a hundred men if it made Shou light up the way he did then.


"Yeah!" 


"Alright, let's go." Ritsu smirked, rolling his eyes.


'What an idiot.'

 

"So Ritsu, what does a Pretty Boy like you do when you're not slashing throats and dazzling people with your intellect?" Shou threw his hands behind his head and walked backward, giving Ritsu a shit-eating grin.


"And why would I tell you, someone, I know could kill me, that?" Ritsu returned the grin.


"Oh, come on, Pretty Boy! Here you answer a question; I'll answer a question!" Shou stuck his tongue out.


"Hmm, fine. But if I choose not to answer, you change the question."


"Deal" The two got on the train sitting at the back of the empty car.


"So...?"


"I'm a student; what about you?"


"Ughh details, Ritsu! Details!"


"I'm a political science major in my second year."


"Ooo fancy!"


"Shou."


"Yeah yeah," Shou waved his hand, dismissing Ritsu. "I work for my dad. I uh, take care of problems."


"Take care of problems?"


"Yeah." Shou ducked sheepishly. 


'Okay, sore spot, got it.'


"Well, what's your favorite food." They both relaxed into mirror grins.


"Spicey pork curry from the restaurant downtown!"

*****

 

"You can leave your shoes there." Ritsu kicked off his shoes by the door of his apartment. Shou quickly ensued, tossing his varsity jacket on the back of Ritsu's sofa. 


"Nice little place you got Pretty Boy! Oh, is this your kitchen? Cute! Wow, is that your bedroom? Is the bathroom back there?" Shou darted across the little living room to the open kitchen before poking his head into the bedroom doorway.


"Yes." Ritsu closed the door to his bedroom before Shou could dash in.


"Give me your pants." Ritsu pulled off his sweater ordering the other.


"Pretty Boy! Please! So forward!" Shou mockingly gasped, tugging at his jeans.


"God, you're a nuisance!" Ritsu blushed. Shou's laugh was intoxicating. 


"You know what you're covered in dirt, and getting mud on my floor ill get you a change of clothes, and you never make a joke ever again, okay?" Ritsu slid into his room to grab spare clothes and hide a deepening blush.


'Idiot.'


"Here." Ritsu opened the door and shoved some pajamas at Shou. Ritsu changed in his room, leaving Shou in the living room. When he went back out, Shou was standing, looking at the overstuffed bookshelf next to the sofa.


"You can sit down, you know?" Ritsu called out startling Shou.


"Heh yeah." He looked sheepishly at Ritsu before sitting on the sofa hands shoved between his knees.


"Hey, smooth guy! Want some ramen?" Ritsu called from the kitchen, lighting the stove and putting the kettle on.


"Sure!" Shou bounced his leg looking around at Ritsus framed posters.

*****

 

"Okay, here, it's hot, so give it a second." Ritsu handed Shou the bowl sitting next to him on the sofa.


"Thanks, Pretty Boy!" Shou immediately started in on the food burning his tongue.


"Idiot!" Ritsu laughed as Shou choked on his food.


"You can stay here tonight if you need to." Ritsu grabbed Shou's empty bowl and started to the kitchen.


"Really! Thanks!" 


"Just promise you'll be here when I wake up, okay?" Ritsu called from the kitchen. He missed how red Shous' face turned or how he clutched his heart to make sure he could catch his breath.


"Sure!" Shou called back. "After all, you've got my clothes."

 

Then to himself, Shou whispered. "And gave me pork ramen."

 

 

 

Chapter Text

 

"Stop ringing." Ritsu groaned from under his weighted blankets and mountain of pillows. A hand reached out blindly from the mess grasping at air until it found the buzzing phone.


"This had better be important," Ritsu growled voice still sticky from sleep.


"Hey, Kageyama." Takeshi Hoshino's voice wavered. He was scared.


'Good'


"Hoshino, you've got two seconds."


"Okay, yes, sorry, uh, well, I've got psych in ten minutes, and I uh forgot my textbook back at home, well my home since you moved out, anyways is there a chance I could borrow yours?" Stumbling over his words, Takeshi finally got to the point. Ritsu squinted at the alarm clock on the bedside table, 10:36 flashed angry red at him. May as well get up for the day.


"You owe me. Got that, Hoshino?" Ritsu sat up, pushing the pile of pillows and blankets to the side.


"Of course, Kageyama! You're a lifesaver!" It must have been a testing day if he was this desperate, it was quickly known fact that Ritsu will cash in favors and those unlucky enough to owe him never owe him again.
After stumbling around his bedroom, pulling on pajama pants and a sweatshirt, washing his face, and brushing his teeth, Ritsu scooped up the textbook from his bag and tiptoed into the living room. Shou was sprawled across the couch, facedown. Ritsu sighed, relieved; he was still here.


'How does he breathe like that?' Ritsu quietly pulled a sticky note off the little table he claimed was his dining room set and scribbled a quick note just in case Shou woke up in the next ten minutes it took to walk to where he was meeting Takeshi, Ritsu left it on the floor next to the sofa.


"Thank you, Kageyama! I got a call from Rei that we were gonna have an open book pop quiz and well you kno-"


"Stop, Hoshino." Ritsu held up one hand to stop the blabbering and used the other to pinch the bridge of his nose. It was too early in Ritsus' day for this.


"Oh yeah, of course. Uh, I'll give it back in History?" Ritsu nodded as he walked away.

 


Shou was still asleep when Ritsu got back. Only now, he had curled into a ball with just the tips of his hair sticking out. Ritsu threw out the note and started his rice maker, a gift from someone who had owed him. After waking up, Ritsu had developed a pattern to his mornings; make breakfast, write in his journal, get dressed, and pack his bag for class.


"If you decide to wake up, there's rice and stuff in the kitchen." Ritsu nudged the lump of Shou with his foot.


"Hmmph." Shou rolled over but showed no sign of getting up.


'Lazy.'


"Alright." Ritsu situated himself at the table, opening the window a crack. Writing was Ritsus second love, after completing an entry about the previous day (Minus a few details, its bad practice to journal your murders and homework in the same place.) He would allow himself a few pages for some short stories. No one saw any of these, not even Mob. It was Ritsus' second love and second-biggest secret.


"Whatchya doin'?" Ritsu jumped, slapping his journal closed.


"Shou! What the fuck!" Shou threw his head back, laughing as he set down the plate Ritsu had made him. Shou looked calm, relaxed. The energy that usually came off him in waves was still. Shou sat across from Ritsu and gazed out the window. His eyes crinkled at the corners; his hair was wilted and hung around his face framing a still sleepy smile and calm blue eyes. Ritsu was hypnotized. Shou reached up stretching Ritsu blushed as he realized the shirt he had lent Shou had ridden up, exposing a sliver of his stomach.


'Look away. Look away!' Ritsu looked out the window, shoving the last of his breakfast in his mouth, praying Shou didn't notice his staring.


"What you up to, Pretty Boy?" Shou finally took a bite of breakfast, guiding Ritsu out of his spiraling thoughts.


"Just," Ritsu waved his journal in the air. "Writing ya know."


"I don't. Anything interesting in there?"


"Not really."


"Oh come on Ritsu, we both know that's not true."


"It's just a journal."


"Oh? Should I be worried?" Shou raised an eyebrow.


"And what would you be worried about?" Ritsu returned the gesture.


"Pretty Boy!" Shou whined.


"No, Shou," Ritsu sighed with a grin. "why would I write that down anywhere much less with everything else happening in my life? Don't worry; I'm not writing about you." Shou smiled, but there was something sad in the corners of his eyes.


"What's up?"


"Uh well, I was just-" Ritsus phone started ringing back where he left it in the bedroom.


'Stop ringing.'


"Go on."


'Stop ringing.'


"Don't you need to get that?"


"What? Oh yeah, I guess."


'Stop ringing!' Ritsu ducked into his room and snatched the phone off his bed.


"Hello?!"


"Ritsu? Is this a bad time?"


'Oh shit, oh, fuck!'


"Nii-san! Hey! No, what's up?" Ritsu slowly tilted his bedroom door closed.


"I was calling to see how you are. How are classes going?" Ritsu sighed his shoulders relaxed, but the stress in his neck stayed.


"Classes are good. I've got Intro to Political Theory in half an hour. Hows traveling?"


"..."Ritsu waited a bit, Mob was either a bit distracted or exhausted as he often was, Ritsu had gotten used to it and in many ways respected his brothers' resilience. Mob responded


 “Ah, I’ve been working on a project close to your campus. It's going to take a week to finish, and in the meantime, Hanazawa offered me a place to stay.” Ritsu could picture the scene of Teru trying to impress his brother to come to his place so he could spend time with Mob. He thought about the redhead at his dining room table. Ritsu supposed every Kageyama had their own Idiot to deal with.

"That's wonderful, Nii-san! We should go get dinner sometime." A few more minutes of pleasantries and a promise to meet up soon led to Ritsu hanging up and desperately hoping Shou would still be at the table where he left him. He wasn't.


"Shou?" Ritsu pushed down the panic rising in his chest.


"Yeah?" Spinning around, Ritsu found Shou in the kitchen washing the pairs dishes.


"Oh, uh, sorry, I thought you might have left." Shou stopped scrubbing the bowl.


"Did you want me to leave?" He asked, haltingly with wide eyes.


"No! I mean its- uh- well- you don't have to I just I didn't know if you like did things or if you had school or a job well I know you have a job but what I mean is-"


"Uh, sorry to interrupt this great speech Pretty Boy," Shou looked from the stuttering deep red Ritsu to the clock in the kitchen. "But didn't you say you had a class today at noon?" Ritsu followed Shou's gaze to the clock.


"Damn!" Ten til noon. Ritsu had less than five minutes to get ready and out the door. Shou laughed good-naturedly at the other as Ritsu tore his way around the apartment. He threw his books and papers in his bag, getting dress the door not totally closed. Shou finished the wash and was about to call out to Ritsu when whatever witty thing died on his tongue, Shou wasn't trying to peep, but he caught sight of Ritsu's back and the nape of his neck right before it got covered with a shirt and as if to add insult to injury a jacket. His breath hitched, and heat crawled across his face; when he had met Ritsu, there was something deliciously dark and playful in his expressions, and every interaction with him left Shou addicted and wanting more of Ritsu.


"Alright, I gotta go uh if you leave lock the door before you go. Or I'll be back in two maybe two and a half hours." Ritsu talked as he walked, collecting his things.


"Okay, oh, wait up!" Shou scampered from where he had frozen in between the kitchen, dining room, and bedroom doorway. He held out his hand.


"Augh! My phone!" Ritsu snatched his phone out of Shous hand and shoved it in his coat pocket.


"Bye, Pretty Boy! Have fun in class!" Shou waved down the hall watching Ritsu sprint out.


Shou was not at the apartment when Ritsu got back. His laundry had been unceremoniously dumped on the sofa, and Shous clothes were missing.


'What a nuisance.' Ritsu thought fondly even as his stomach dropped, and a kind of loneliness invaded his head. It swarmed around him for days, manifesting into a headache that Ritsu suffered through for two days.

*****

 

"So then I told her and-" The slamming door cut off whatever nonsense Ichi was about to spout off.


"Geez, nerd, what crawled up your ass and died?" 


"Kurata dollar. Mezato, you two the only ones here today?" The two exchanged a look. Ritsu was always professional and usually held a neutral face, sometimes if he were upset, he would frown a bit. Today Ritsu sported a scowl that had carved into his face. They hadn't seen him in this horrible of a mood ever.


"Yeah, the other three have tests, and Emi has work." Ritsu felt the massive headache tick. There was no way he could do this today. Ritsu sat down head in his hands to quiet the pounding and opened his mouth to speak when his phone started ringing from the depths of his backpack.


'Stop ringing!' Ritsu shut his mouth, grinding his teeth. It kept ringing.


'Stop ringing.' Every ring was like a nail pounding into his temple.

 

'Stop ringing' Finally fed up with the overwhelming sound and pain Ritsu dug into his bag like an animal. Ripping out his phone, Ritsu answered before looking who it was.


"What?" He snapped.


"Hey, little bro! What are your plans for this evening?" Ritsu was going to kill Teru.


"Why? What do you want?"


"Well, there's gonna be this party tonight at some juniors house over a few blocks away, and I finally got your brother to agree to go to a party only thing is he refuses to go without a designated driver. Could you- uh-huh? Yeah, I'm asking him now. Oh yeah, I'll tell him. Hey, your brother says hi! Anyways could you be our driver?" as Teru prattled on Ritsu took several deep breaths.


'A party might not be a bad idea.'


"Fine. Text me the details, and I'm driving your car?"


"Yeah! Thanks, little bro!" The things Ritsu did for Mob.

*****

Ritsu could smell the alcohol as soon as he opened the car door. Teru was speaking a mile a minute, waving his hands telling some story to Mob that only Ritsus' brother could decipher. And Mob was nodding along with a small smile gracing his face. Ritsu nodded to the couple before separating as soon as the group walked in the door. He had some hunting to do. The stress and pressure sliced through his body, fueling his bad mood and the reason Ritsu had initially agreed to go.  Most of the people there were older students, friends of Terus, or people who had heard and needed to forget for a night the looming end of semester papers and projects. Ritsu wandered into the kitchen, scooping up an empty cup and filling the very bottom with some fruity drink closest to him on the counter. As he meandered to the back porch, Ritsu passed a group of girls who started giggling as he walked past them.


'What is this middle school?' Ritsu rolled his eyes and sipped his overtly sweet drink. Someone tapped on his back.


"Uh, excuse me," One of the girls had broken off from the group she smiled up at Ritsu.  She giggled a bit, resting a hand on Ritsus' arm.


'This one should be easy.' 


"Hi." A cold smile flashed across his face. Not a minute later, she's hanging off his side on the porch as Ritsu waits. The letter opener hung heavy in his coat pocket, tempting him. The girl leaned into Ritsu half whispering half laughing.


"Let's get out of here."


'Finally.'  He rolled his eyes, the duo wove their way back inside when Ritsu hears it. Well, he more feels it then hears, his phone is ringing. He pauses, pulls out the phone and pales. It's Shou. He must have put his number in the other morning while Ritsu was rushing around,  he had saved as Nuisance <3. Ritsu instinctively relaxed, breathing a bit better and frowning less. The prospect of talking to Shou filled his very cells with and adrenalin only comparable to getting away with murder. Unfortunately, Ritsu couldn't hear anything.


'Please keep ringing.' He thought as he let go of the girl.


'Please keep ringing.' Ritsu lost her in the crowd as he rushed for the nearest door. If he could just get outside, he could hear.


'Please keep ringing!' Ritsu begged as he bolted out the door down the drive practically into the middle of the street.


"Shou?"