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☽ ♕


The first time Tsukishima Kei meets Kageyama Tobio, Tsukishima Kei already decides that he must hate Kageyama Tobio. 

Kageyama Tobio looks stoic, carefully avoiding Kei’s eyes, instead only looking at Akiteru, and he looks like he would rather be anywhere, but in front of the entrance of the palace next to his father, with his blue garments perfectly styled, accented with gold, that Kei thinks he must’ve gotten tailored just for this occasion. This visit that will cement their future, and shape this marriage.

Kei can’t see the gold. Can’t see the blues. Can only see red as he continues to stare at Kageyama Tobio, who still refuses to look at him, gaze fixed at Akiteru and the King exchanging pleasantries, and all Kei wants is for Kageyama to look at him, and show him that he’s as angry about this as Kei is. 

A twitch of a mouth, a tight fist, or even a stoic glance.

Kei just needs something. 

But all he gets is the side of Kageyama’s profile. Jaw sharp and accentuated from years of sword-wielding that the Kageyamas are known for, and Kageyama is the number one genius in that almost everyone knows, not just their two kingdoms. Kei wonders briefly when was the first time Kageyama touched a sword, and when he got crowned the genius of it all. Kei looks more, and sees that Kageyama has a perfectly slanted nose, as well as a perfected stance only a royal could have, and and his expression is one of an obedient son, doesn’t show anger and remorse like Kei’s face right now, probably.

On his head, there is a crown, and it fits him so well, Kei feels his own one gets heavier.

They have that meal, and Kageyama still doesn’t look at him.

Kei stays silent the whole meal, not saying anything as Akiteru and the King discuss the wedding, letting the adults talk. Kageyama doesn’t, too, and Kei is just about to think that maybe Kageyama Tobio is doing his own way of showing remorse and hatred for this arrangement between them before it crosses his mind that the reason why they’re both so silent is because neither of them were included in this conversation, and something larger than anger burns further in his chest.

After the atrociously long dinner, the King asked Kageyama to show him around the palace. 

They walk in silence, and Kageyama Tobio still doesn’t look at Kei.

It’s outside in the gardens, under the gleaming moonlight watching over them, with the guards walking behind them in a respectable distance, that Kei finally snaps.

“Say something,” Kei says, and while anger is there, it almost sounds like he’s begging instead. A plead, and Kei feels fucking embarrassed, but he powers on. Kei takes Kageyama’s arm to stop him from walking, and Kei can hear the rustles of swords being pulled out by the guards behind them before Kageyama sharply tells them to stop, and this is the first time Kei hears his voice that Kei lets a little bit of relief colour his chest.

“Stop,” Kageyama says, glaring at the guards, putting his hand out to stop them, and the guards immediately backed away, putting back their swords to its sheath at Kageyama’s command, the crown prince’s words must be taken seriously after all. He fixes a look at the two guards. “Leave us be.”

The guards are rendered silent for a while, and Kageyama seems to be ready to say it again before one guard bravely speaks out. “Crown Prince,” the guard starts, eyes huge and confused, and suddenly he doesn’t look as scary as he did when he unsheathed the sword earlier. “The King said we must accompany you. He said—”

“He’s my fiancé,” Kageyama cuts sharply. “I trust him.”

All Kei can think of is that he shouldn’t. One day, Kei might snap and kill him in his sleep for not being as affected about this as Kei is.

“But, sir,” the guard then pauses, cutting himself off, after seeing another look from Kageyama. The guard then nods respectfully, in sync with the other one. “We’ll leave you to be.”

So they’re alone. The moon gleams under the darkness of the night, and Kei finds that he doesn’t know what to say, where to begin, so they’re silent. Kageyama is looking at the moon, seeming to not want to start the conversation, and it makes something burn in Kei’s chest again, that it’s going to be just Kei that starts this conversation and Crown fucking Prince Kageyama will just take it all, like the obedient son he is. 

Kei wants to kill him. 

Right now. Under this gleaming moonlight. 

Kageyama Tobio might be the number one in sword-wielding, but Kei isn’t bad either. 

He could. Take it out right now, and just let the blade take over. 

But he can’t. 

Because this marriage is happening, and Kei can’t do anything about it. Can only accept it. That he won’t be King of his own kingdom, which he’s okay with. But that means he can get married off to Kageyama Tobio, someone more important who’s in need of a spouse, and who will be the King eventually, with an even larger crown. 

Kei grips his sword, before sighing, letting the anger dissipate. Not worth it. Kei turns away from the moonlight, away from Kageyama Tobio, into the entrance of the garden, to get out of that space, since Crown Prince Kageyama Tobio is apparently too cowardly to even look at Kei, what more say something to him. 

“Prince.” Kageyama’s voice sounds through the night, and Kei stops. Kei turns to look back at him, to find him looking at Kei with an unreadable look on his face, eyebrows furrowed. His eyes are so blue. Just like his garments. He looks befitting of the title Crown Prince. “I’m sorry—”

Kei’s face hardens, gaze sharp as he looks at Kageyama Tobio. “What for?” 

Kageyama fixes him a look. “Whatever you’re angry for.”

Something burns, burns, and burns in Kei, and Kei takes out his sword, pointing it to Kageyama. Kageyama doesn’t even budge. Doesn’t take out his own sword. Just stares back at Kei, as if making up for the time he spent not looking at Kei, and Kei hates him. How he doesn’t react the way Kei wants him to, how he doesn’t mind the blade almost touching his chest. Kei feels like he’s living up to his words earlier. He’s my fiancé. I trust him.

“You don’t know why I’m angry?” Kei bites out, angry, breath laboured. The blade is still threatening to touch Kageyama’s chest, but he still doesn’t budge, looking back at Kei with a look Kei can’t read. “Are you fucking stupid?” 

Kageyama’s face finally hardens. At least he’s human. “No. I’ve accepted my fate. You should too, Kei.”

“You don’t get to call me that,” Kei breathes out. He’s angry. He’s so angry. He doesn’t know what for. What to be angry for. Too many. At this wedding. At Kageyama. At Akiteru for marrying him off. At this stupid time he’s living in. Kei then scoffs, finally lowering his sword, putting it back in its’ sheath. Kageyama doesn’t budge. As if he didn’t even notice Kei’s sword was out. “Fate. Of course, you’d call it that. Is it really fate when bigger people than us are deciding it for us? When humans are playing Gods? You want to call that fate? Is that what you say to yourself ever since the agreement to make yourself feel better?” 

Kageyama looks at him. Kei wishes he would look angry. Just once. “Maybe. Maybe because I think spending my life with you wouldn’t be too bad.” 

Kei steps forward, pushing on Kageyama’s chest. “You’re fucking with me.” 

Kageyama stares back, unrelenting. “I’m not.” 

“We just met today. We’re getting married on our second meet. You’re fucking insane. You are actually insane.” Kei says, unable to stop the confusion from tinting his voice. He’s still angry. So angry. Who does Kageyama Tobio think he is? 

Kageyama shrugs, finally looking away. He stares at the moonlight, and the moonlight colours him. He looks majestic. The light from the moon bouncing off his crown, highlighting the gems encrusted into it, all the diamonds. Kei wonders how heavy it is. To be wearing a crown of a crown prince. The moonlight covers his face well, accentuates his jaw, his cheekbones, his raven hair. Kageyama breathes out a sigh, looking at Kei again. “I just think it’s better to take advantage of a situation when you can’t change it. I just think you should stop being so angry. You should trust me too.”

What Kageyama probably means: we could make this work. Both of us. Only if you try as well.

What Kei hears: I’m the Crown Prince. This doesn’t affect me in any way. I just need someone to marry, and you’re the perfect prince, without a Kingdom to inherit for it since I could also spread my Kingdom’s influence. 

“You don’t get to tell me that I should stop being angry,” Kei spits out, and he changes his expression into one of mockery. “This won’t affect you at all, won’t it, King? You just need someone to be with you when you become King, and I’m perfect for that. You don’t have to move away from your Kingdom. You’ll just have to sit here, and be pretty while I have to move my whole life for you.” 

“Prince,” Kageyama starts, eyebrows furrowed. “That wasn’t—” Kei immediately cuts him off.

“Fuck you.” Kei spits out, and Kageyama’s eyebrows furrow even more. “Watch out on our wedding night, Kageyama Tobio. Crown Prince?” Kei says, before scoffing. “What a joke.” 

Kei walks away, and Kageyama Tobio doesn’t even try to catch up to him, standing still, with the moonlight backing him up.

What a joke.


☽ ♕


The thing is, on their wedding night, it’s given that people expect them to fuck. 

It’s just given, one of those things that are naturally expected of a couple from a wedding night. The thing is, they’re not a couple. They’re not. They met for the second time, and now they’re here, with the tie of a marriage between them, and influences in both their Kingdoms. The wedding had been long, and Kei kissed Kageyama Tobio for the first time there. Chaste and quick, as if Kageyama doesn’t want to linger longer than needed. It makes Kei feel sick. 

Kei looks around their wedding chambers. The way their wedding chambers are set up, white sheets, with candles all over the room, smelling distinctively of cinnamon and vanilla, the fact that there are no guards behind their doors. It’s late. The huge arched windows outside are showing the gardens, the exact one they talked in last time. If someone is out there tonight, they would be able to see them fuck.

It makes Kei both want to both laugh and belch, at these expectations enforced onto them. As if marrying each other to spread influence is not enough.

“I won’t touch you,” Kageyama says, breaking Kei out of his trance, and Kei snaps his head back towards him, a frown already on his face at Kageyama’s words. Kageyama looks back at him impassively, starting to open his garments, starting from his jacket, the gold heavy on his shoulders. Kageyama’s helpers didn’t even help him take off his garments since they wanted to leave them immediately for their wedding night, as if expecting them to immediately fuck as they get left to their own devices. Kageyama’s crown is still heavy on his head as he fixes a look at Kei, taking off his dress shirt, starting from the first button. “And you won’t touch me.” 

“I didn’t say that.” Kei says, because he didn’t. He didn’t say he wouldn’t touch Kageyama Tobio. Kei is also starting to  take off his jacket. His gold is not as heavy as Kageyama’s. His crown is also lighter on his head. 

Kageyama chuckles at that, rolling his eyes at Kei, and that’s the first time Kei ever sees him so human. “Sure. You’ll touch me. To kill me. Right? That was your words. Last time.”

Kei approaches him. Kageyama already has his dress shirt off, so it’s hanging loosely against his shoulders. His body is toned. Years and years of sword-wielding and being out on the field. The leading commander. Such a perfect Crown Prince. Kageyama is looking at him, eyes heavy-lidded, not expecting Kei to step closer to him. 

“Do you want to touch me, King?” Kei asks, not egging him on for once. Because he’s curious, for once. What the answer to this question will be. Kei starts to open his dress shirt.

Kageyama looks at him, swallowing the lump in his throat as he studies Kei, and he backs away, closing his eyes. “Not when you’re still like this. No.” 

“Still like this?” Kei questions.

Kageyama opens his eyes, breathing hard, fixing a hard look at Kei to get his point across, and Kei doesn’t think he would see Kageyama look this undone so quickly. “About us. About me. About this marriage. I can’t touch you. And you can’t touch me. Unless you trust me.” 

Kei feels his mouth dry out at the blunt words. Before Kei can dwell on it much, Kageyama heads towards the bathroom. On the way there, he blows out the candles he passes, and the room smells more of cinnamon, the little smoke the candles let out flowing through the air, and the chamber gets progressively darker. 

“I’ll bathe first, Prince,” Kageyama says, calling him that because Kei said he can’t call him Kei from last time. He remembers. “Then you’ll go. We’ll have to sleep on the same bed. I’m sorry.” 

The heavy door of the bathroom shuts, and Kei is left to his own thoughts. 

That night, after Kei bathes longer than needed, Kageyama Tobio is already sleeping on their bed. The smell of cinnamon is still in the air. Kageyama Tobio doesn’t look much like a Crown Prince with his crown not on his head, looking peaceful instead. There’s a reasonable space between Kageyama and the place where Kei is supposed to sleep. Kei just sighs, tucking himself into their bed, and Kageyama next to him shuffles a little at Kei, but he remains asleep.

On their wedding night, Kei doesn’t kill Kageyama Tobio. 

Kageyama doesn’t seem to believe him either way. That Kei could kill him, and Kei doesn’t know what to think of it, so he sleeps.

The next morning, he wakes up early to find Kageyama Tobio on the arched windows, looking out the gardens, looking unreal in his white sleeping garments, with a cup on his hand. 

Kageyama looks at him when he hears the rustles, and says softly. “You didn’t kill me.” 

Kei sighs, looking away from the windows to look at the ceiling instead. It’s painted, looking sacred and religious, that Kei finds it amusing that they were supposed to fuck in this room with the angels watching them from the ceiling. Kei sighs again, replying belatedly. “I didn’t.” 

“Good.” Kageyama says. “I knew I wouldn’t have to watch out on our wedding night.” 

Kei just groans slowly, forcing himself to go back to sleep.

Kei thinks he can hear Kageyama chuckle. 

Kei should’ve killed him.


☽ ♕


Kageyama finds him in the gardens, mulling over the flowers with the gardener, and the gardener, seeing the Crown Prince up close, immediately scampers, going over to the other side of the gardens where the Crown Prince is definitely not. 

“You scared her away,” Kei mumbles, narrowing his eyes at Kageyama, watching as the gardener gets started on planting a new seed without Kei, and Kei stares forlornly. Kei sighs, getting up, brushing away at his knees to get rid of the mud. At least he’s wearing his outdoor wear today. Kei turns to look at Kageyama to find him looking sheepish. 

“I’m sorry,” Kageyama says softly, and Kei just grunts, not knowing what else to say. It’s not as if Kageyama could control the superior power he has over this palace, being the Crown Prince. It’s just natural to be scared of him, so Kei can’t exactly blame the gardener, too.

“Whatever.” Kei just mumbles, not knowing what to say again. 

It’s been awkward these past few days, ever since they got married. 

Kei doesn’t exactly want to kill Kageyama Tobio anymore, so there goes his life plan, and they’re both awkward around each other ever since the prevalent sexual tension between them that wedding night, so they both just float around each other’s existence ever since that wedding. Having meals together with the King, and then during the day, Kei goes off to do anything he wants in the palace, whereas Tobio attends to his Crown Prince duty, and then they go to sleep on the same bed at night with a reasonable distance between them, and Kei just has tomorrow to look forward to in order to get rid of the awkwardness between them. 

One of the things he picked out while seeking for things to do in this palace is gardening, and this is the first time ever since the wedding that Kageyama sought for him during the day. 

“What are you doing here?” Kei asks roughly, walking along the path of the gardens. Kageyama is walking next to him, hands on his back as he walks, eyes on the ground, ridiculously polite. “Don’t you have Crown Prince shit to do?” 

“You and your language,” Kageyama says absentmindedly, and Kei looks at him, rolling his eyes.

“You should try cursing, King,” Kei suggests mockingly. “Get rid of that obedient Prince edges you have.” 

“I’m not the King yet,” Kageyama chooses to say instead, and Kei sighs. Of course that’s what he chooses to point out. But then he says: “Fuck.” 

Kei laughs at that, incredulous at the sudden way Kageyama said it, and Kageyama’s eyes light up. “Oh, god.”

“You laughed,” Kageyama points out, in awe, and Kei wants to push him to the mud. White clothes be damned. 

“I laugh plenty of times,” Kei says indignantly, rolling his eyes at Kageyama. Just when you’re not here. Because you suffocate me, you remind me so much of how useless I am when I’m here. 

“Not with me,” Kageyama points out softly, voicing out what Kei is thinking.

“You should start by being funny,” Kei suggests, mocking, again, because that’s all he can do when it comes to talking to Kageyama. Or get angry. Or both. It’s a blurred line at times. 

“I’ll try,” Kageyama says, and Kei scoffs, at the thought of Kageyama taking this seriously. 

“Why are you even here?” Kei asks, because this is rare. They usually only meet again during dinner, where they’ll have a meal together with the King. 

“I have some spare time,” Kageyama says, and Kei feels the need to take offence.

“Of course,” Kei starts. “You come to me only when you’re bored.” 

“No,” Kageyama immediately says, and he walks in front of Kei, walking backwards so that he can look at Kei, and Kei wishes he could trip and die. “I thought you wouldn’t want me to disturb you during the day.”

Kei scowls. “You look like an idiot.”

Kageyama ignores him instead, asking softly, voice earnest. “Do you want me to come more to you during the day?”

Kei swallows the lump in his throat, looking away from that sincere look on Kageyama’s face. “I’m not a kid you have to look over.” Kei sighs frustratedly. “Why are you here? You’re that bored that you decided to seek out your husband?”

Kageyama finally stops his awkward walking, but instead he stops Kei from walking, placing a grip on Kei’s arm to stop him, eyes wide in surprise, and Kei looks at him in question, scowling as he does. “We’re husbands.” 

“Congrats, did you finally notice that huge as fuck ring on your finger? We are,” Kei snaps, breaking out of Kageyama’s grip, continuing to walk. Kei doesn’t hear Kageyama walking for a moment, but then he hears a quick rustle, and finds Kageyama already next to him.

“I was thinking if you would want to spar with me?” Kageyama asks softly, looking at Kei, and Kei stops to look at him. Kageyama stops, too. Kei wishes he would stop looking so earnest. 

“Was that why you came over here?” Kei asks.

“Yes,” Kageyama replies easily, shrugging as he does, rubbing at his neck, so unlike a Crown Prince, shy, for God knows what. “I also just wanted to see you.” 

Kei ignores those last words, instead nodding. “Yes, I want to spar. You could’ve opened with that.” 

“I wouldn’t have talked to you, then,” Kageyama says honestly, and Kei wants to deck him. To push him towards the mud, and leave him there until the gardener notices.

Kei sighs, gripping Kageyama’s arm, to drag him to the sparring center. “Let’s go. This is the only chance I get to pretend that I could kill you.”

Kageyama just chuckles at that, letting himself get dragged away.


☽ ♕


Kageyama Tobio is nice. 

Crown Prince Kageyama Tobio is really fucking nice. 

Is what Kei thinks when he can’t sleep one night, head too full with his constant thinking. 

One would think that being married for almost two months now would make him get used to Kageyama’s behaviour, his mannerisms, and just him in general. 

But the thing is, Kageyama Tobio is a constant enigma. Something that Kei keeps having to get used to whenever he shows parts of himself to Kei. 

When they spar, he looks happy, smiling with the sweat dripping off his face, looking at Kei with that blue of his eyes that Kei can see despite the face gear, not taking Kei’s threat of killing him too seriously. Maybe it’s because he is the best at sword-wielding, hence he thinks Kei is not that much of a threat, but one time, Kei won, trapping him on the floor of the sparring centre, straddling him, with his thighs on both sides of Kageyama’s hips. and what idiot Crown Prince Kageyama Tobio did was open his face gear, grinning so big at Kei, his hair wet with the sweat pooling on his hair, and he didn’t flinch when Kei pressed a sword to the metal of his armour, laughing more instead, eyes fixed on Kei. 

When they sleep, Kageyama still keeps a respectable distance between them, never breaching, scared maybe, and Kei lets him, not wanting to breach it either, scared maybe. But ever since that day in the gardens, he says good night to Kei every night without fail. Soft, each time, tentative, as if asking for permission, as if asking if it’s okay to do it, if he’s stepping over the boundaries again, and Kei wants to take him by the collar to tell him to stop being like that. Stop treating Kei like this. 

During the day, he visits Kei a lot. Twice, sometimes thrice, sometimes four times, which is ridiculous, because breakfast ends at nine, lunch at twelve, and dinner at seven, and Kei wonders what the hell does he even get done if he sees Kei so much. Sometimes it’s a brief walk at the gardens, asking Kei what he is doing, and getting genuinely interested when Kei tells him about all the different types of ferns and flowers. Sometimes, it’s over at the stables, where Kei has grown to love this one horse, riding into the sunset at times. Kageyama joined him one time when Kei was out on the fields with that horse, probably near dinner time already, with his own horse, looking at Kei, not saying much, just watched Kei as Kei watched the sunset, and Kei didn’t know what to do with that gaze, so he pretended that the heat of the gaze was from the sunset, and not from Kageyama’s gaze. Sometimes, it’s even at the library, with Kei surrounded by books, he barely notices, but one cough from Kageyama tells him he’s there, and they get to talking.

And god, they talk.

They’re still trying. 

Sometimes, Kei uses too much sarcasm and mockery, it ruins the whole conversation.

Sometimes, it’s a decent conversation, with Kei replying to Kageyama’s constant questions, and Kei sometimes asking back. Sometimes, it’s just asking what they would have for dinner, and sometimes it’s just mindless talks about Kei’s own Kingdom that he has yet to visit. Been two months. Sometimes, Kageyama asks about what Kei does in his Kingdom, and he describes it. The people there, the adventures, the places the West has that the East doesn’t. He talks about Yamaguchi, too,  mostly, his attendant that he truly misses, and that’s when Kageyama gets all weird, so Kei only brings it up when he wants to piss off Kageyama, which, to be honest, is getting less and less these days. 

Kei thinks about it all one night, and shakes Kageyama awake. 

“Prince?” Kageyama’s voice sounds groggy, but he turns, and he looks at Kei, rubbing at his eyes. 

“You still call me Prince,” Kei points out, and Kageyama makes a noise of confusion. He still sounds a bit sleepy.

“Yes? Aren’t you a Prince?” Kageyama asks, and he’s looking at Kei, a clear space between them, but with Kageyama’s eyes, bright and blue, it doesn’t feel like there’s any space between them. Kei shuffles closer, and Kageyama stiffens slightly. 

“I can’t get close? Are you uncomfortable?” Kei asks, voice no hint of malice, just soft, inquiring. 

“No,” Kageyama says, and his voice sounds parched. Kageyama clears his throat. “You can. Please.” 

Kei swallows at that, shuffling closer. They’re close now. There’s still a distance, just enough that they don’t have to be cross-eyed as they look at each other. “Why do you still call me Prince?” 

Kageyama swallows, staring at Kei, at his eyes, then his lips, before darting back to his eyes. “You told me I don’t deserve to call you by your name. Don’t you remember?”

Kei does. Kei remembers well. Just want to hear Kageyama say it. Kei sighs, closing his eyes, settling deeper into his pillows, so that Kei doesn’t have to stare at the blues of his eyes. “Yes. I remember.” Kei is silent for a while. “Sorry. You can call me Kei.” Kei hears the rustles of their sheets, and opens his eyes. He finds Kageyama sitting down properly on the bed, not looking at Kei. “Kageyama?” 

“Tobio would be nice, too,” Kageyama says, and Kei chuckles. 

“Tobio,” Kei says, and Tobio finally lays back down, looking back at Kei. 

“I’m sorry you feel forced into this marriage,” Tobio says first, because of course he does. 

Kei just looks at him. “You were too. Not just me.” 

Tobio looks at him, earnest, always, and sighs as he does, then closing his eyes, mumbling: “At least I love you.” 

Kei’s heart stutters at hearing that. Love? Kei starts chuckling. “Love?” Kei asks.

Tobio opens his eyes again, and Kei can see hurt. It’s the first time Tobio looks like that. Tobio doesn’t get hurt when Kei says he would kill him, he laughs. Tobio doesn’t get hurt when Kei has the blade of his sword pressed against his chest, he smiles, looks at Kei like Kei was doing something cute rather than threatening to kill him. Tobio doesn’t get hurt when Kei mocks him, he just takes it all in stride, bringing up another topic. 

This is new. 

This hurt. 

“Is me loving you funny to you?” Tobio asks, timid, eyes hurt and wide, and Kei feels like going over to his side of the bed to kiss that hurt away from his eyes.

Kei swallows the lump in his throat, at the sudden guilt. “No, not funny at all,” Kei says honestly. “Surprised. A little. I don’t treat you that nicely.”  

It’s Tobio’s turn to chuckle, and the hurt dissipates from his eyes, but it still looks hesitant. “How are you surprised? I make it obvious from the very beginning.” 

“You don’t want me to touch you,” Kei says, although it doesn’t make sense. Kei thinks he knows where this is going. He just doesn’t know if he wants to hear it.

“I do,” Tobio replies, voice hard, and he looks away from Kei to look at the ceiling instead, running his hand over his face in frustration. “So much. It’s always been about waiting for you to be ready, Kei. Not just about, you know. Just. Waiting for you to trust me.” 

The wide room feels suffocating. Kei wants to go. Somewhere. “Why would you want to wait so much for me?” 

Tobio shrugs, glancing at him. “Maybe love is blind.” Tobio then chuckles, noticing how stupid that answer sounds, and he shrugs again, moving closer to Kei, and Kei lets him. They’re so close. Kei can feel Tobio’s breath, hot against his face. “Because I hoped you would trust me. You were right. The fact that your position as just a Prince gives you a disadvantage. But I didn’t see you that way. I just saw you as someone I could spend my whole life with.” 

“Even when I’m angry?” Kei asks, because it needs to be asked. This disparity between them is too large. Feels unfair. Both of them. 

“I had hopes. I heard a lot of good things about you. Before you came to the palace,” Tobio replies. His eyes keep darting towards Kei’s lips, so Kei leans forward, and closes the gap between them, closing his eyes. Kei can hear Tobio’s gasp at the sudden touch of Kei’s lips against his, but he leans in more, fervently kissing into Kei’s mouth, moving his head expertly, and cupping Kei’s face gently, directing Kei’s lips against his. Their mouths are hot against each other for a few moments before Tobio pulls away forcefully, breathing hard, and Kei looks at him in confusion. Tobio breathes hard for a few seconds, before continuing where he left off with his words. “So I had hopes. God knows why. That your annoying fucking attitude would dissipate the more we spend time together. It did. I know you know that. I didn’t mean to say you’re annoying. Sorry, you’re not. Never. Just. Mean?” 

“You cursed,” Kei chooses to say instead, and he wipes his mouth, and Tobio, seeing that, leans in again to plant a chaste kiss on his mouth, and Kei wants to deepen it, but Tobio pulls away again. “Why do you keep doing that?” 

“Because we’re such a mess,” Tobio says, rubbing at his eyes, closing his eyes, so that he doesn’t have to look at Kei so undone. “We need to talk. But I keep wanting to touch you.”

“We can talk later,” Kei says, and he straddles Tobio, putting his thighs over both sides of Tobio’s hips, and their crotch might touch if Kei grinds just a little. It feels a lot like their sparring match, whenever Kei won, except this time Tobio doesn’t have that pleased smile on his face, just looking overwhelmed that Kei is on top of him. “Do you not want this?” Kei asks, then about to get off Tobio, but Tobio presses a strong hold against Kei’s hips, making him stay.

“Nooo,” Tobio whines, and this is new, too. Being so petulant, and desperate. He is usually the composed one. The more patient one. “Kei, Kei, Kei,” Tobio chants, although Kei isn’t even doing anything to him, so Kei grinds down a little, and Kei can feel Tobio’s cock against the thin fabric of his sleeping wear. Tobio’s cock rubs against Kei’s own, already slightly hard, and Kei feels his breath stutters at the touch, and Tobio, who has his mouth near Kei’s ear, bites slightly on the earlobe at the feel of their cocks touching. This is still with both of them still covered. Kei can’t imagine when they’re both naked. 

“Tobio?” Kei asks softly, still grinding their cocks against each other, and Kei moves to take off Tobio’s sleeping wear, and Tobio allows him, fervently lifting his ass up so that he can slide off the garment, along with his shirt. He’s not wearing any underwear, like Kei, and it kills Kei that they’ve both been like this for two months. Wonders how they were even able to resist each other. Because he respects you, something in Kei whispers, and Kei finds himself agreeing. “Tobio?” Kei tries again.

“Yes?” Tobio breathes out against Kei’s ear. Kei involuntarily shivers. Tobio moves his hand from Kei’s waist to Kei’s own sleeping wear, sliding it off easily, and Kei lifts his legs on either side of Tobio so that it can fully slide off, then taking off his shirt for a good measure. Tobio’s hand rests against Kei’s ass, cupping it slightly. His voice sounds strained. “You’re not wearing underwear.”

Kei turns to look at him, to find Tobio with a fucked out look on his face as he gropes Kei’s ass, and Kei finds it hilarious at how affected Tobio is because they’re just grinding against each other right now, still. Kei leans down to press a kiss against Tobio’s mouth, then licks his way in for just a moment, before pulling away, and a string of saliva follows them, and Tobio chases it, kissing him again chastely before Kei pulls away. “You’re not wearing one, either.” 

“I know. I don’t find myself hot, though, so it doesn’t matter,” Tobio says easily, and Kei chuckles against Tobio’s mouth, pressing in to kiss him again, while their cocks continue to rub against each other, leaking pre-cum. It feels so immature, just doing this, but Tobio looks like this is all he wants. Tobio then presses a finger into the cleft of Kei’s cheek, and Kei gasps a little at that. It’s dry there, but Tobio continues to press it on to his hole. 

“Tobio,” Kei breathes into his mouth. “Could you—”

“D’you know how long—” Tobio breathes out, pressing more of his finger into Kei’s dry hole, touching his prostate just slightly, and Kei moans a little. “I’ve wanted to hear my name with your voice?”

“Two months?” Kei guesses jokingly into his mouth, pressing an open-mouthed kiss against Tobio’s lips again, and his hand goes down to grip both their cocks. Kei can’t hold both their cocks fully, just enough that he could make them touch, and Kei rubs slightly on the slit of Tobio’s cock, which Tobio moans at. Kei then tries to slide his hand against both their cocks, gripping them together. It slides a little, with how slippery it is with their pre-cum, but it still feels a little dry, while Tobio presses more of his finger into Kei’s hole. “Tobio. Use lube.” 

“Ah, sorry,” Tobio says, and his finger slips out of Kei’s hole, and he pulls away from Kei’s mouth, to go over the side table, taking the lube from the drawer, and Kei laughs, gripping rubbing against the slit of Tobio’s cock again, which he moans at, as he slathers lube on just one of his fingers before handing the lube over to Kei, and Kei generously slathers it on his fingers, so that their cocks can slide against his hold smoothly. 

“How long has that lube been there?” Kei asks, sliding their cocks together, and Tobio bucks his hips slightly, while still trying to put that one finger into Kei’s hole again, so Kei moves a little so that he’s straddling Tobio with his face near Tobio’s neck, sucking on the spot below his ear. 

“Dunno,” Tobio moans out, and a spurt of pre-cum comes out of his cock, landing on his chest, and he presses deeper on Kei’s prostate, which makes Kei gasp a little, biting at Tobio’s neck now. Kei’s own cock spurt out a pre-cum at that, a reaction to Tobio’s ministration and Kei’s own hand moving his and Tobio’s cock together. “Maybe before the wedding. We were expected to fuck.” 

“You cursed again,” Kei pants out, looking at him. 

“I did,” Tobio says, and he slides that one finger in and out of Kei’s hole so fervently, that Kei’s cock finally gives out, cumming, his cock twitching once, and twice, letting it all out. Some of his come lands on Tobio’s lips, and Tobio licks at it, which makes Kei groan. Tobio presses on his prostate one last time before pulling his finger out, then panting against Kei’s ear. “I’m close, Kei.” 

“Did you wait long to use my name, too?” Kei whispers against Tobio’s ear, and Tobio only whimpers.

With his own cock softening, Kei focuses on just Tobio’s cock, sliding it up and down in his hand, enjoying how sloppy and wet it is, with Tobio’s pre-cum mixing with the lube, as well as Kei’s own come. Kei presses against the slit of Tobio’s cock, and Tobio finally comes, his cock spurting out the liquid, and Tobio moaning every time his cock twitches. Some of it lands on Tobio’s chest, mixing with the Kei’s come, and Kei licks at it a little, just near Tobio’s nipple, which Tobio makes a warbled grunt at, before pulling away, passing out next to Tobio, knees tired from straddling Tobio the whole time. 

They’re silent for a while, Tobio’s pants filling the air, before Kei speaks out. 

“We should talk,” Kei suggests, and Tobio looks at him, sitting down properly, and then leaning down to press a kiss on Kei’s lips. 

“Okay,” Tobio says, and he gets a towel first from the bathroom, wiping them wherever they used the lube, and wherever their comes landed. 

“I’m sorry,” Kei starts, when they finally settle down, and their lust is not in the way. They’re both leaning their backs against the bed frame, just staring at nothing. “It must’ve been hard dealing with me.” 

“I’m sorry you felt like you were forced into this marriage,” Tobio says back, repeating his earlier words, in case it got lost somewhere. “I promise I don’t see you as just someone to have by my side.” 

Kei swallows the lump in his throat at that. Because it is what Kei didn’t like about this marriage. He doesn’t have a Kingdom to inherit. Akiteru had always been the one as the Crown Prince, much like how Tobio is. And Akitery got married to someone from the South. Kei, being just the Prince, had no real purpose in their Kingdom. Better to use him as someone to tie the bridge with the East. With Tobio. It was never Tobio he was angry at. It was this situation, and the fact that Tobio didn’t need to get married off like Kei was. 

And Tobio understood that.

Not wanting to take advantage of him, not wanting to be the one to make the first step, always waiting for Kei. Merely because he had hopes Kei would come by. Not even believing in him. Just a tiny bit of hope allowed him to wait for Kei. 

“I don’t think I love you just yet,” Kei says, honest, looking at Tobio. Kei is surprised to find that Tobio doesn’t have that hurt on his face. Just relief. 

Tobio leans in, holding Kei’s shoulder, and planting a kiss at the corner of Kei’s lips. “I know,” he whispers against his lips. Tobio then pulls away, just smiling wistfully. “I’ve always waited for you. I think I can wait just a little more.” 

“Sorry,” Kei says again, and Tobio kisses him again, before pulling away. 

“When I take the crown,” Tobio starts, and Kei lifts his eyebrow at the odd opening. “This will be your Kingdom too. I promise.” 

Kei’s mouth feels dry at that. “You don’t have to make stupid promises.” 

Tobio looks at him incredulously. “Who said I am? We’re husbands. When I become King, you’ll be one, too. I’ve heard. You made one of those decisions to stop the war your Kingdom was about to start, right? I trust that we could do this together.” 

Kei just looks at him, the earnesty in his eyes, the honesty in how he says his words, and thinks: Crown Prince Kageyama Tobio really looks like someone Kei can love for the rest of his life. Looks like someone Kei can trust, looks like someone who would wait for Kei when he’s behind one step. 

Kei swallows the fear, the bitterness, and nods. “Okay.” 

Tobio responds by kissing him. It tastes like victory. As if Tobio is saying to him finally, you trust me. Finally, you’re here with me.