Ryuji was in a good mood. Akechi watched him talk about some video game, letting the words fly over his head as he looked into Ryuji’s eyes, a soft smile taking over his face. He was like a ray of sunshine, bright and bubbly, eyes glimmering in the yellow lights of the ramen shop.
It was Ryuji’s idea, and Akechi had to admit that the ramen was good but what made him agree to come to such a place wasn’t the food. He had to get Ryuji to spend time with someone who actually cared and didn’t constantly tease him.
“Hey, are you even listening?” Ryuji asked him, pouting slightly. Cute.
Akechi blushed, trying to ignore his stupid mind. “O-Of course I am!” he spluttered out, telling himself to calm down. “The game you want is coming out next week.”
Ryuji grinned, and for Akechi that was the only thing he could see, everything around him disappearing, his eyes focused on Ryuji’s face, his heart beating so loud that he swore everyone could hear and a warm, tender feeling spreading throughout his chest. It was…different. He didn’t mind it. He snapped out of his trance to smile back, feeling a genuine smile come out easily-which was rare for Akechi.
“You guys are friends?” someone interrupted their moment, looming over them. Akira. Of course, he would turn up and ruin a good moment. Ryuji made a choking sound, a faint dusting of pink on his face.
“You guys are friends?” Akira repeated his question, a hint of malice twisted into the words. Ryuji shrunk back in his seat, eyes darting up to look at Akechi as if asking for help.
“Yes,” Akechi answered, being as blunt as he could to match Akira’s energy. If he had the nerve to be rude, Akechi would be rude right back. “Issue?”
“No…just Ryuji didn’t hang out with us today and I wondered if he was ok.” Akira talked like Ryuji wasn’t right next to him, listening to every word that snake said.
“I think you’ll find he’s quite alright.” Akechi stared steadfastly at Akira, his words polite but his gaze sharp and cutting. He hoped his message would go through Akira’s thick skull.
Leave. Ryuji. Alone.
Akira made a ‘hmph’ noise and sauntered off, the cat muttering something Akechi couldn’t hear, no doubt some cutting remark about Ryuji. Akechi scowled. That stupid idiot had ruined Ryuji’s good mood. The bubble atmosphere had faded, replaced with a mix of angry and uncomfortable. Turning his eyes to Ryuji, he noticed that Ryuji was staring at the table with an unreadable expression, hands resting on the table. Annoyance specifically reserved for Akira simmering in his mind, Akechi reached over and squeezed Ryuji’s hand, turning away when Ryuji looked at him but keeping his hand there.
Ryuji held his hand back, and they sat in silence for a few minutes.