Chapter 1: Act I
“So, you’re telling me that I’m being considered to play one of the lead roles,” Sakusa asks carefully, “... but my tentative love interest is going to be Miya Atsumu?”
His manager winces, having prepared herself for this kind of reaction. “Well… yes.”
Shimizu Kiyoko, bless her fucking heart, has been Sakusa Kiyoomi’s manager ever since his career started at seventeen. He’s twenty-two now and he finds himself constantly impressed at how she’s managed to keep up with him for the past five years. For as long as he could remember, long before he’d even started acting, friends, classmates, teammates, and even his own parents, had given him the reputation of being “too high maintenance.”
That reputation had followed him all the way to his stardom. Sakusa doesn’t know what exactly was considered to be too high-maintenance. As far as he’s concerned, he’s just someone who’s always had a lot of goals. Set goals that he was dead set on achieving, that he wanted to achieve in a certain way, wanted the people around him to understand that he needed to achieve it this certain way, and he made sure that he reached those goals he’d set for himself by doing it that way.
If that was being too high maintenance, then so be it. He was too high maintenance.
One of those said goals (He had a list. He started writing it when he was fifteen. Komori says he’s a loser for it, but he can go fuck himself.), was to star in a gay film. He’d decided on that particular goal before his age had even reached double digits.
This goal was only born because one of the first gay films he’d ever seen was Brokeback Mountain and he’d wondered if it was really necessary to make the cowboys so miserable for years, giving them just a couple of high altitude fucks once or twice a year for over a fucking decade, only to kill one of them off in the end.
His nine year old self who’d watched that movie at the lowest possible volume while his parents were dead asleep upstairs, stared at the TV screen as the credits rolled and thought, wow that sucked… also wow, I’m probably a little gay.
As he grew older, that small goal turned into a high priority one, as he grew more conscious of the lack of proper LGBTQ+ representation in media, especially for people of color. They were almost always miserable and had sad endings. Sakusa detested that because being gay in real life was miserable enough. Do people really think that that’s all gay people wanted to see all over media too?
And sure, a lot of them were beautiful, important, and progressive for their time, but now that Sakusa’s in the position of someone who has the power to give his community good representation, he wanted to grab it the second he got the opportunity.
He first saw the script of Make It Count when he was turning eighteen. It had been going around for a while by then, because the original actors that the director Ukai Keishin had wanted, in their words, ‘had too many worries about the way the public might view them because of their roles and couldn’t bring themselves to take it, despite how beautiful the script is.’
Sakusa had scoffed when he’d heard that. Just say you’re homophobic and go.
It was an open secret in the industry that Ukai Keishin was gay and that he had a long-term partner and so, Sakusa had read the script with high expectations and by the end of it, he’d never wanted to get a role so badly. He was a little too young for it at the time and he knew that, but he let it be known that he wanted it, that he could do it, and that if he was given the chance, he wouldn’t let them down.
That was a little over four years ago now. He’d been dreaming about hearing those exact words for so long.
‘They want you for Make It Count, Kiyoomi-kun!’ Kiyoko said more excited than Sakusa had ever seen her. ‘They want you to play Rui alongside Miya Atsumu as Takeru.’
He genuinely hears glass shatter.
“Miya Atsumu?” He repeats, just to be sure, because he had to have heard that wrong.
Please, he better have heard that fucking wrong.
Kiyoko looks like she’d expected that reaction, but tries her best to lift his spirits, anyway.
“Yeah, that handsome child actor. And you’re the same age as him, aren’t you? They’re considering him as your partner. Isn’t that just… great?”
“So, you’re telling me that I’m being considered to play one of the lead roles,” Sakusa asks carefully, “... but my tentative love interest is going to be Miya Atsumu?”
“Well… yes.” She says, her fists clenched to her sides, like she’s currently fighting with all her might to convince him of something, “That’s exactly what I said. You know, Miya Atsumu, double Academy Film Prize nominee, one time winner by the time he was twenty, that Miya Atsumu?”
Miya Atsumu. Double Academy Film Prize nominee, one time winner by the time he was twenty. He’d started acting when he was only two years old, starring in a milk commercial with his identical twin. He was, by all means, Sakusa’s senior by a long-shot. He was talented, too. Ridiculously so. Sakusa could at least admit that much, having seen most of, if not all of the guy’s works.
But Miya Atsumu was also… a child star. (Dun, dun, dun.) You’ve heard all the horror stories and you’ve heard all the rumors about how children who grew up in the limelight always ended up, and it was never good. And while Sakusa didn’t want to stereotype, Miya Atsumu fit the stereotype pretty perfectly.
By the time he was sixteen, he had the reputation of being a wild party boy who drank too much, dated too much, and was caught doing scandalous things by the paparazzi too much. People who’d worked with him claimed that he was a genius, talented beyond belief, and that his natural talent and love for acting shone brightly, no matter where he went.
But on the other hand, because of course there had to be another hand, he was known to be irresponsible, loud, and had the tendency to cause delays in filming because of how often he wouldn’t show up. And even when he did, he’d be late and usually hungover. At age sixteen.
Sakusa knew he had his own rumors that went around, usually about him being cold and stuck up, but none of those rumors ever said anything about his skill or level of professionalism. And in the end, that’s what mattered when it came to getting jobs.
Miya Atsumu was a child star party boy… who’d also recently disappeared off the face of the Earth. One day, he completely stopped posting on social media, stopped accepting any roles, and no one physically saw him for a little over a year. Sakusa remembers. He wasn’t one to lurk on social media and know all the latest celebrity gossip, but even he’d wondered what the hell happened, because no one seemed to be able to give a clear confirmation as to where he went. So, this was going to be a big deal.
This movie, this role, was the first one Miya Atsumu was taking after his sudden disappearance.
But still… Sakusa winces, thinking about how he was potentially going to have to film his dream movie with an actor who had a reputation that could only be likened to fucking Justin Bieber.
“Fuck.” He groans, “Can this not be happening to me?”
Kiyoko raises her eyebrows, amused at the uncharacteristic dramatics, “Okay, drama queen. Are you saying you won’t do it? Should I tell them you don’t want to?”
“I didn’t fucking say that, of course I’m doing it.” Sakusa huffs, sinking horizontally into his couch, and burying his face into a throw pillow.
He groans into it before turning to face Kiyoko. “Are they sure they want Miya Atsumu? It can’t be… I don’t know, literally anyone else?”
“Of course they’re not sure, silly.” She chirps, more cheery now that she’s sure he’s taking the role. “They aren’t even sure about you. They still have to do some screen tests, check on your chemistry with each other. You know the drill.”
“Right. Chemistry reads.” Sakusa blinks. “Chemistry reads...”
He sits up abruptly and Kiyoko jumps a little at the sudden movement.
“Okay, this isn’t so bad.” He says, his mood suddenly improving drastically. “Because there is absolutely no way that Miya Atsumu and I are going to have any chemistry.”
“I don’t know about that, Kiyoomi-kun.” She tilts her head, taking a sip of her wine as she stares at him pointedly, “He’s a good actor and so are you.”
“Then, I can just make it so that I show off my acting skills and passion for this role, all the while making sure that I show no chemistry with him at all. I’m good enough to pull that off, aren’t I?”
Kiyoko looks at him like she’s horrified.
She takes another sip of wine. “You concern me.”
“So, it happened exactly like you said.” Atsumu’s manager slash childhood best friend, Suna Rintarou says, as he gets off the phone. “They pretty much jumped at the opportunity to get you onboard.”
“What’d I tell ya?” Atsumu says lazily, staring at the ceiling as he squeezes his stress ball. “Of course, they’d want me. Imagine the traction they’d get when people find out that Miya Atsumu’s first movie after his hiatus is a gay film.”
Suna rolls his eyes, kicking Atsumu’s thigh to give him more space in bed. Atsumu scoots over as Suna collapses beside him with a sigh.
“They want you as Takeru.”
Atsumu swivels his head to the side to look at his friend, shell-shocked.
“What? They gave me the good boy role? Who the fuck is gettin’ Rui then?”
“Apparently, their eyes are set on Sakusa Kiyoomi.”
“Oh, great.” Atsumu scoffs. “That bastard, huh?”
“Hey, be nice, alright?” Suna scolds, whacking Atsumu on the stomach with a pillow. “He may not have the best reputation out there, but don’t forget that yours is leagues worse.”
“Hey, fuck you, at least I’ve managed to fix mine.” Atsumu argues, “His attitude issues are still ongoin’ and based on what I’ve heard, they’re goin’ strong .”
He was relatively new to the industry compared to him, having only started five years ago as part of the main cast of that star-studded action movie that Atsumu had forgotten the name of. He worked alongside Jun Matsumoto. Atsumu’s been acting for twenty fucking years now and he’s never worked with Jun Matsumoto, and Sakusa Kiyoomi gets to do it for his first major role? What the hell is with that?
He could just tell that the guy had strong connections in the industry. He’s rumored to have grown up in a well-off family, too. Probably never had to work too hard for a goddamn thing in his life.
Sakusa Kiyoomi, a young actor rumored to be incredibly pretentious and stuck up ever since he was a newbie, who didn’t have too many friends in the industry because of just how cold and unfriendly he was. He’s professional to the point of being dull and a perfectionist to the point of being a diva who made things harder for everyone around him.
He’s good and he’s professional, but he’s a hassle. He’s talented, but he’s hard to please. He’s good-looking, but he seems emotionally unavailable, even as a friend.
People always used such fancy words to try and describe him. In Atsumu’s opinion, they can just say he’s anal and leave it at that.
Now, Atsumu wasn’t going to be a hypocrite. He’s heard all the horror stories about him, alright. He got way too drunk way too often, started too many fights, sparked too much drama, dated too many girls (and boys, but the public doesn’t know that) and broke too many hearts. He delayed filming all the time, he was an inconvenience to cast mates, directors, and producers, yada-yada. He’s heard that particular spiel enough times for him to have it all memorized.
He’s a child star gone down the wrong path. But that’s, like, ninety percent of child stars. Sue him.
The only reason he’s back after spending over a year in hiding and self-isolation or whatever term it is the articles are using, is to prove that he has not reached a dead-end at the age of twenty fucking two years old. His career was only just beginning and there was so much left for him to do, to achieve, and to prove not only to everyone else, but to himself.
Because he owed himself that much. Because he owed his family that much, his fans that much, and Suna that much. That’s why he’s worked on it. That’s why he’s here.
That’s why he’s okay now and why he’s going to make damn sure that he will be for the remainder of his career.
That’s why he wasn’t going to let Sakusa Kiyoomi ruin it for him.
“Are they sure about the guy?” Atsumu asks, “If they want me to be paired with a fuckin’ rookie who’s never been the lead of a romantic movie, they’ve gotta make sure that he can keep up with me. This is the gay role I’ve been lookin’ for my whole damn career, so he better not ruin this for me.”
He says that knowing full well that Sakusa Kiyoomi could not only keep up with him, but that he’ll be able to do so perfectly.
“Relax, you big-headed superstar. Obviously, nothing’s final.” Suna retorts, “You’ve both still gotta do some screen tests and chemistry reads. See how well you guys are gonna work together, you know? Same shit as always.”
“Test my chemistry with him, huh?” Atsumu sighs, turning over in his bed, comfortably. “Great. Then, that means I’m not doin’ this movie with him, ‘cause we won’t have any.”
“Whatever you say.” Suna says, “Or you can just admit that you’re panicking ‘cause you think he’s hot and you jerked off to that cologne commercial he did recently.”
Atsumu turns to him, betrayed. “I told you that in confidence.”
“Live your dreams, Miya Atsumu.” Suna encourages, like the best friend that he is. “Live your dreams.”
“Just ‘cause yer my brother’s boyfriend, doesn’t mean I won’t beat yer ass.” Atsumu glares, kicking him off the bed, and pulling his blankets over his head. “Now, go away so I can nap. And by the way, I don’t get crushes on straight men so you can go shove it.”
“Who the fuck is straight?” Suna laughs as he’s successfully kicked off the bed and onto the carpeted floor. “Sakusa Kiyoomi used to date Ushiwaka , are you fucking kidding me?”
There’s a meaningful silence, before Atsumu slowly pokes the top of his head out of the covers.
“... Wait, he’s gay?”
Suna howls in laughter as he ducks from the pillow Atsumu throws at him.
“I knew it! You think he’s hot!”
“Shaddup! Go away! Ya useless manager!”
Sakusa’s in the middle of reviewing his script when someone plops down onto the chair next to him. He doesn’t even look up because he already knows who it is. He can see all the blonde from the corner of his eye. And he can smell his cologne.
It smells like something only assholes would ever wear.
He hears rather than sees the man bring out his own script. Sakusa tries not to let out a relieved sigh at that, hopeful that reviewing their lines side by side in peace would be the extent of their off-camera interaction for today.
“Hey. Yer Sakusa Kiyoomi, right?”
If he could only be so lucky.
“Yes.” He answers, still without looking up. “And you’re Miya Atsumu.”
“The one and the only!” He exclaims, a little too loud for the quiet waiting room, “How would ya know that when ya haven’t even looked at me, though?”
“Your blonde is eye-catching.” He deadpans. “Shouldn’t you be rehearsing your lines?”
“Nah, I know my lines just fine, thanks.” Atsumu retorts, leaning towards Sakusa, resting his elbow on the armrest and his chin against his palm. Sakusa can practically feel him breathe against his ear. “I wanna get to know you more.”
“Yeah? Well, we can do that if you get the part.”
“Wow. Feisty.” Atsumu raises his eyebrows, impressed at the sheer audacity, “And rude. I’m yer senior, ya know. D’ya really think it’s a good idea to be an asshole to me like that?”
Sakusa’s eye twitches.
“Okay, look, just because you’re—” He snaps his head up to give his senior a piece of his mind and comes face to face with…
“... too close.” Sakusa ends up saying breathily, instead of whatever he had planned.
The only up side is that Miya Atsumu looks just about as flustered as he feels. Small mercies.
“Right.” Atsumu gulps, as he backs away. “Too close.” He repeats.
Sakusa isn’t sure if his eyes are just playing tricks on him, but he’s almost certain that Atsumu’s ears are red.
Suffice to say, it’s awkward after that.
Sakusa tries to turn his focus back to his script, but he can’t now that he knows how long Miya Atsumu’s eyelashes are, and Atsumu tries to focus on updating Osamu about how embarrassing this all was and how no one had warned him about how hot Sakusa Kiyoomi was in real life, without letting the man next to him see his screen or notice how badly his hands are shaking.
After he sends Osamu a very telling keyboard smash, two other actors appear. One that Atsumu doesn’t recognize, and the other being Kageyama Tobio. Ooh. Atsumu guesses he’s being cast as Yuki.
But the silence, unfortunately, doesn’t get any less awkward.
It takes a few minutes later for Suna to come back from his bathroom break, sitting next to Atsumu when he does.
Atsumu instantly sends his manager an SOS with his eyes, to do something, anything, to help him start up his failed conversation with Sakusa Kiyoomi again.
Suna winks at him like he’s got it and fishes his phone out of his pocket.
Atsumu is about to sigh in relief, until Suna seemingly finds what he’s looking for and presses something with his thumb.
Breaking the silence, the Wii Menu music starts playing from his phone, echoing loudly against the four walls of the formerly peaceful room.
Atsumu ever so slowly turns his head to look to his right and Suna just nods at him with a shit-eating grin.
Kageyama Tobio and the other guy also look up from their scripts. The one guy doesn’t say anything while Kageyama starts to bob his head along to the beat.
He’s doing it unconsciously too, Atsumu thinks. Bless him.
Sakusa has his eyes squeezed close next to him, like he’s in agony.
Sometimes, definitely not all the time, but sometimes, Atsumu truly regrets choosing his childhood best friend as his new manager slash agent.
What the fuck, Atsumu mouths angrily to Suna.
“What?” He shrugs, innocently. “I thought you wanted me to break the silence.”
“You’re the worst person I’ve ever met in my life.” Atsumu says.
The Wii Menu Music continues to play as Atsumu and Sakusa read their scripts silently side by side as a few more actors arrive. Not another word is spoken between them.
The two are pretty sure, at that moment, that everyone in the room was all thinking the same thing, as the Wii Music switches to that French song from Ratatouille.
Wow. They are never getting cast together.
They’re doing the post breakup scene for the chemistry read, except it’s not really a break up scene. The set-up being that Rui and Takeru are childhood best friends who’d been secretly in love with each other all their lives, but Rui’s about to get married, and so they cry and yell at each other by the sea. It’s a whole thing. And it’s apparently the toughest scene in the whole movie.
According to Ukai, if they can do this together and do it well, they can easily do everything else. Sakusa takes it as a challenge.
His first try was with someone who looked familiar, except he couldn’t put a name to match the face. He only finds out from Ukai that his name is Terushima Yuuji.
Sakusa knows his lines well, tries to channel Rui the best that he can and thinks he does it well, but he also knows it’s far from being his best. Yuuji is too nervous, too stiff, and stutters through a few of his lines. Sakusa can’t even bring himself to tear up when he says the ‘Why? Why are you doing this now?’ line.
His second try was with Kageyama Tobio. He’d heard from Kiyoko that he’s apparently meant to play Takeru’s other friend Yuki, who’s in love with Takeru while he’s pining over Rui, but they’re trying him out for Takeru too, just in case.
In Sakusa’s humble opinion, Yuki deserved better in the storyline but he’ll take that up with the director later on.
He learns that Kageyama Tobio is good. Technically, Sakusa already knew that, considering he’s seen two of the guy’s movies, and he’s pretty sure he was nominated for an Academy Film Prize last year. His performance alongside Hinata Shoyo was impressive.
But he’s truly good. Outstanding, even.
This time, the director doesn’t say cut too early and lets them finish more than half the scene. Sakusa has a good feeling about it and hopes to god they give him Takeru instead of Yuki.
Atsumu could do Yuki. At least then, Sakusa wouldn’t have to do too many scenes with him. He remembers reading a particular one where their characters argue and Rui apparently tries to punch him in the face.
Sakusa could do that. Easily. Gladly, even. They didn’t even need to do a chemistry read or anything for that.
“Alright, that’s enough, that was good!” Ukai says, clapping his hands. “Thank you, you two. Sakusa-kun, do you need a break? Or are you alright to go one last time?”
Sakusa wipes away the stray tears from the corners of his eyes, wanting to get the worst over with as soon as possible. “I’m alright, sir. I can go again.”
“Okay then, if you’re sure.” Ukai says, turning to look at the only remaining man waiting for his turn. “Atsumu-kun, you can go ahead.”
“Finally.” Atsumu huffs as he jumps out of his seat, walking over to Sakusa with the swagger of a man who’d done this a thousand times before, like someone who had absolute confidence that he was going to get this part whether he liked it or not.
Sakusa wanted to ruin him. In what sense, he couldn’t be sure.
When Atsumu stands in front of him, he stares him down. And when Sakusa meets his eyes, the man has the nerve to smirk .
Sakusa wonders if it’ll lower his chances of getting cast, if he punches him in the face right now.
“Alright.” Ukai says, after he finishes writing something down in his notebook. “Whenever you’re ready.”
Sakusa closes his eyes, takes a deep breath, and tries to remember that he’s Rui right now. Rui. Not Sakusa.
And Rui’s in love with Takeru. This is Takeru, and not Miya Atsumu.
By the time he gathers himself and opens his eyes, Atsumu already has tears running down his cheeks, lower lip wobbling.
What the fuck.
“Are you really marrying her?” He asks, voice hoarse and shaky in a way that makes it sound like he’s been crying for hours, and jeez, how is he doing that? “Rui… are you really doing it?”
Sakusa pulls himself together. He can’t blow this. He won’t blow this.
“I don’t know what you want from me, Takeru.” He says, “I don’t have a choice. You know that.”
“Yes, you do!” Atsumu exclaims, throwing his arms out to his sides. His talent is so palpable that Sakusa is almost intimidated. “Are you fucking kidding me? Of course, you have a choice! Run away with me!”
“Are you an idiot?” Sakusa bites back, rushing forward to put his hand over Atsumu’s mouth, because they’re supposed to be outdoors in this scene, “Stop yelling, someone will hear you. And I can’t fucking do that. How would we do that?”
“We’ll figure it out.” He begs, clutching onto Sakusa’s wrist to move his hand away, more tears spilling down his face as he does, “We’ll figure it out, like we always do. Like we always have. Run away with me. You don’t even love her.”
“Yes, I do.” He says, stiffly.
“No, you don’t.” Atsumu insists, grabbing him by the shoulders. “You know you don’t. And you know she doesn’t love you, either. Neither of you even want this. Just… please, Rui.”
“Why?” Sakusa’s tears start rolling down his cheeks, and he doesn’t even realize he’s crying until he feels them dripping down his chin. “Why are you doing this now?”
His voice trembles. This line was supposed to be yelled out, this line was supposed to be angry, and yet he was too overwhelmed to say it as anything more than a weak and quivery whisper.
“You know why.” Atsumu says, stepping forward, and Ukai’s supposed to stop them now.
He’s supposed to yell cut at this point, but he doesn’t.
So without a hint of hesitation, Atsumu rests his hand on the back of Sakusa’s neck, leans forward, and kisses him.
The script said that it had to be desperate and full of passion. A kiss that contained an entire lifetime of longing.
And Atsumu does it. He does it well. Too well.
It’s wet and salty and they’re both sniffly, but both as Rui and as Sakusa, he completely melts into it, if the whimper he lets out involuntarily is anything to go by.
He doesn’t know when his fingers had ended up tangled in Atsumu’s hair. He doesn’t know when they’d started fully pressing their bodies together.
All he knows is that he feels tongue . That is… very real tongue.
For some reason, Sakusa feels like this is a competition and that he can’t lose to him, so he bites Atsumu’s bottom lip slightly, pulling it down to make him open his mouth wider.
The man moans into his mouth and Sakusa realizes he needs Ukai to yell cut soon, and by soon he means now, because he’s getting hard.
Oh god, he’s getting hard.
They’re both still crying and kissing, when he hears Atsumu whimper something into his mouth that sounds suspiciously like ‘.... Omi.’
Oh, wow. This is hell. He’s in hell.
“Okay.” Ukai says and his voice is soft, but it sounds loud in the dead silence of the studio. “That’s… enough. Uh. Cut! Yes, cut. That’s what I meant.”
Sakusa is the first to pull away and so he’s able to watch the almost ethereal beauty in the way Atsumu’s eyes slowly flutter open to look at him, hazily.
And for a moment, that’s all they do. They just look at each other.
At their debauched states, tear streaked cheeks, and the spit string between them. They both know what had just happened.
They completely broke character.
“Holy shit.” Ukai says, turning to his producer.
“Holy shit.” The producer nods.
Kiyoko’s mouth is agape at the side of the room while Suna’s next to her, holding back a bout of laughter by hiding his mouth behind his fist. His expression looks a lot like he’s saying, I knew it.
When Atsumu and Sakusa stare at each other, they know exactly what they’d just done.
They broke character.
And yet, it was the most chemistry they’d ever felt with an onscreen partner. And only a potential one, at that.
“Holy shit.” Atsumu says more to himself than to Sakusa. “We’re gonna get it.”
Sakusa gulps, Atsumu’s wrecked voice moaning ‘Omi’ into his mouth playing on repeat in his head.
“Yeah. We are.”
The car ride back to Sakusa’s apartment is silent, but he can tell just by his manager’s face that she has a lot to say. He hated when people acted like Kiyoko was an actual angel on earth to put up with being his manager for as long as she has. The only reason she’s been able to do it is because she’s secretly a pompous little shit.
The second they walk into the apartment and she closes the door behind her, Sakusa feels her smug expression burn holes into his back.
“And you said you wouldn’t have any chemistry.”
And there it is.
“Shut. Up.” Sakusa says, shrugging off his jacket, and pointing at her warningly. “I mean it. Not a word from you.”
“I’m just saying,” She says, hands up in the air like she means no harm, “— last time I ever saw you kiss someone like that was when you were still dating Ushijima-kun.”
“Who did he kiss?!” A voice yells from the kitchen.
Kiyoko squeaks and Sakusa flinches so harshly that he thinks it hits a nerve in the back of his neck.
“Ow, fucking— Komori, you piece of shit. I gave you a key for emergencies.”
Komori appears from behind a wall, bringing chips. “I ran out of Doritos.”
Sakusa rolls his eyes so hard that it gives him a headache. “You know, if we weren’t related, I would’ve filed a restraining order against you.”
“Well, what are you gonna do? We are related.” Komori smiles sweetly, popping a chip into his mouth as he plops onto the couch as if it were his, patting the space next to him. “Now, come on you two. Come and sit with me and tell me who my cousin apparently just swapped spit with.”
“I’m not telling you sh—“
“Miya Atsumu.” Kiyoko replies.
Sakusa swivels around to look at her, betrayed.
“Oh. Sorry.” She says, slowly sinking down onto the couch. “Was I not supposed to say it?”
“Miya Atsumu? The child star?” Komori exclaims with a mouthful of Doritos. “Wait… hey, didn’t you have—“
“Don’t finish that sentence.”
“— a crush on him in high school?”
“I did not.” Sakusa bites out venomously, tossing a throw pillow at his cousin, which he easily catches with one hand and tosses back to him.
Damn volleyball players. Damn liberos.
“Yeah, you did.” He argues, “I remember vividly walking in on you jerking off to his swimming scene in—“
“I am going to kill you and mail your dead body to your team’s doorstep.” Sakusa deadpans.
“They’ll… probably thank you for it.” Komori says, “But that doesn’t change the fact that you used to have a crush on Miya Atsumu.”
“I am learning a lot about you today.” Kiyoko says amusedly, looking more entertained than she should.
“I hate you both. You’re both fired.” Sakusa says, giving up and settling into his couch. “As my manager and as my family.”
He’s completely ignored.
“I thought you’d gotten over your crush on him, though.” Komori points out, “Especially after his whole cheating scandal with those two actresses he worked with in that horror movie he did.”
“I never had a crush on him.” Sakusa says, stubbornly.
“Could’ve fooled me.” Kiyoko says, leaning towards Komori, talking behind her hand, making a whole show of pretending to whisper, all the while saying it loud enough for Sakusa to hear. “He made a big deal out of making sure they wouldn’t have any chemistry but they made out with tongue.”
“Oooooooh, tongue on your first day? I’m impressed, Sakusa Kiyoomi. You never kiss on the first date.” Komori teases, leaning forward to meet Sakusa’s eyes. “Just admit it… you still think he’s hot, don’t you?”
You still think he’s hot, don’t you, he says. Hell no. Sakusa does not think Miya Atsumu is hot. He’s an irresponsible, cocky asshole, who thinks that he’s better than everyone else just because he’s been doing this longer than everyone else and he uses tacky cologne, has an ugly dye job, and stupidly long eyelashes, pretty brown eyes that sparkled under the studio lights, soft lips, a skilled tongue, and a husky voice that sounded almost like a symphony when he moaned—
“Shut the fuck up!” He yells, standing abruptly, taking his two friends by surprise. “I do not think he’s hot and if anything, he’s the one who found me hot, and that’s what got me into character! That’s all it was!”
Kiyoko sighs tiredly. “Denial city, as always.”
Komori closes his eyes with a grave nod. “Denial City, Superiority Complex Street.”
Atsumu slams his apartment door closed, ripping his coat off, and chucking it to the side. “I hate that bastard. What a prick.”
Suna snorts. “Is that what hate looks like these days? Wow. Wish I had that.”
“How’d it go?” Osamu asks from his comfortable position on the couch, sitting beside Kita Shinsuke, who as far as Atsumu was concerned, was supposed to be in Korea for filming. “I heard you two pretty much shot an opening scene for a porno today.”
“I gave you a key for emergencies.” Atsumu scolds, “And what’re ya here for, Kita-san? Aren’t ya supposed to be in the middle of shootin’ a blockbuster?”
Osamu says, “I wanted to make fun of you”, at the same time that Kita says, “That ended yesterday and Osamu asked me this morning if I was in the mood to make fun of you.”
Atsumu sighs tiredly as his manager skips his way to his twin brother, kissing him full on the lips. He tries not to throw up, and all but drags his feet toward his unwanted company of three, throwing himself face down onto his beanbag chair.
“What happened to you?” Kita asks, eyebrow raised. “I haven’t seen you in months and the first time I do, you’re having another one of your overly dramatic meltdowns?”
Atsumu turns his head slightly to give him a half-hearted glare. “You don’t care about me at all.”
“That’s a lie and you know it.” Kita says.
Kita Shinsuke, fellow child actor, Three Time Academy Film Prize Winner, and the youngest one to ever do it, at that. He was one of the lucky ones whose time in the industry left him untainted. He’d seen all the ugly, experienced all the bad, and yet he was as perfect and refined as he always was. His reputation remains as squeaky clean as it’s been from the beginning.
How he managed to do it, Atsumu wishes he knew so that he could follow by example. The only explanation he’s managed to come up with was that Kita Shinsuke is half human, half God.
(Atsumu may or may not have had a long-time crush on him that lasted a couple years. They don’t talk about it.)
“He’s cranky ‘cause he has to do a gay film with a hot guy he hates.” Suna explains.
“Ah,” Kita says, like it makes sense, “That doesn’t sound so bad. Before we filmed our first movie together, you were also just a hot guy whose guts I hated. That turned out alright.”
Atsumu lifts his head. “You thought I was hot?”
“That’s all you got from that?”
“Yer bein’ dumb, Tsumu,” Osamu says, with that tone he always uses when he’s about to give Atsumu a piece of his mind, “It’s not like this is the first time yer gonna have to work with someone ya find hot or that ya don’t like.”
“Yeah, but it’s the first time I have to work with someone who I don’t like and find hot at the same fuckin’ time.” Atsumu groans.
“What do ya even call that?” Osamu asks quietly.
“Horny hatred?” Suna answers.
“Homosexual resentment?” Kita adds.
“Isn’t that just homophobia?” Atsumu asks, “Wait, no, can we go back to my crisis, please? What am I gonna do? Saaaaamuuuuu,”
“No.” He answers, before Atsumu can even finish whining.
“Can’t ya do it for me?” He begs, crawling towards his brother and grabbing his foot. “Jus’ dye yer hair for a few months or somethin’. I’ll attend yer Master’s classes for ya.”
“No, you’ll make me fail.” Osamu deadpans. “And I haven’t acted since I was fifteen so that’s just gonna be a disaster waitin’ to happen.”
Atsumu groans even louder.
He loved Osamu. There was no one he cared about more in the entire world and that was including himself. But a part of him still hated him, just a little bit, for leaving the industry. They’d started together and half the reason Atsumu didn’t find himself breaking from the pressure earlier than he did, was because he had Osamu with him. In his head, he’d unconsciously associated his brother with safety and stability.
Which had clearly been a mistake, because losing him cost him those things too.
Sometimes, he still wondered if maybe he wouldn’t have had to disappear for a year if Osamu had been with him. But he never brings that up, especially not in front of his brother. After that whole episode last year, Atsumu knows that Osamu probably hated himself a little, too. He knows Osamu blames himself for it and while Atsumu secretly blames him a little bit, just because he’s petty like that, he knows none of it was his fault.
It was Atsumu who’d fucked up.
Osamu kicks him lightly. “Don’t be a fuckin’ baby. This is the movie you’ve been wantin’ to do for years now, ain’t it?”
“Oh.” Kita interjects, raising his eyebrows. “Wait, is this Make It Count? That script you made me read a few years ago?”
“Yeah…?” Atsumu says, “What’s with that face?”
“Then, isn’t this the script with that fairly intense sex scene?” He points out.
There is a pregnant silence. The kind of silence you only ever hear when you know someone is fucked.
This time, Atsumu doesn’t groan. He screams.
Sakusa has done a fair amount of acting workshops throughout his lifetime. And he was well aware of the fact that they were going to have to do a little bit of that, considering that this was both his and Atsumu’s first gay roles. Hell, this was his first time being the lead in a romantic film, period.
But that didn’t make anything about their situation more bearable. A part of him understood because yes, sure, they’ve never tackled roles like these before, but another part of him wanted to yell at everyone in the room.
Excuse me, hello, sir, ma’am, sorry, can I just ask why exactly you’re asking a bisexual man to practice how to act bisexual?
And he wasn’t an idiot. Nobody had ever really said it out loud but it was an open secret that Miya Atsumu wasn’t exactly particular with the people he dated or slept with. Gender didn’t ever seem to be a factor to him and he’s done a good amount of romantic movies before, so Sakusa thinks it’s pretty fair to assume that neither of them needed this workshop and they could just go straight to filming whatever they needed to film, so they didn’t have to be around each other and touch each other more than they already have to in the first place. But alas…
“Okay, now…” Ukai says, motioning for Atsumu to come closer, “While Sakusa-kun is leaning against the balcony like this, you have to come over slowly and hug him from behind, gently.”
“Gently.” Atsumu repeats. “I can do gently.”
“Maybe we wouldn’t have to keep doing this shit if you didn’t keep putting your clammy hands up my hoodie.” Sakusa bites back.
“Are ya stupid? Ya think I’m doin’ that ‘cause I want to? That’s what it says I have to do in the script!” Atsumu defends.
“Your hands are fucking freezing!” Sakusa yells back.
“It isn’t my fault ya didn’t wear a shirt under yer hoodie, are ya fuckin’ stupid?” Atsumu scoffs.
“Stop calling me stupid, you’re stupid!”
“Please,” Ukai rubs his temples. “Let’s just get on with it.”
“I’m very sorry about them.” Kiyoko whispers to him.
“Alright!” Atsumu says, too chippy for someone who was just trying to pick a fight. “Don’t ya worry, Ukai-san, Omi and I are just goin’ through a rough patch but we’ll get over it!”
“Don’t call me Omi.” Sakusa hisses, angrily turning around to lean against the balcony railing, waiting for Atsumu to approach him with a back hug for the third time.
He slightly turns to Ukai once Atsumu is out of hearing range.
“Does it really have to be him?” He almost begs.
“Hey,” Ukai shrugs, “ You were there.”
Curse their damned onscreen chemistry. Curse that damned kiss. Curse Miya Atsumu’s bright hair, pretty eyes, soft lips, and skilled tongue. He hopes he rots.
In the middle of his hateful internal monologue, he once again feels strong arms wrap around his middle, gently, and this time thankfully, not under his hoodie. A cheek rests against Sakusa’s left shoulder and he forces himself not to freeze up at the touch. He tries to look as natural as possible, as he brings one hand down to rest it on top of Atsumu’s joint ones around him.
His hands are rough.
“Mmmm,” Atsumu hums contentedly, pressing himself closer, “Ya smell nice, Omi-kun.”
Sakusa exhales loudly, leaning back to rest his head against Atsumu’s shoulder. He hates to admit it, but this was… nice, kind of. Or it would be if Atsumu wasn’t constantly trying to get on his last nerve.
“I said to stop calling me Omi-kun.” He says under his breath, so that Ukai doesn’t hear.
“Omi-Omi, then.” Atsumu says simply, turning his head to bury his face in Sakusa’s neck. “Ya smell like baby powder.”
“And what about it? I have sensitive skin.” Sakusa says, feeling the need to defend himself for some reason. “You’re breathing too hard against my neck, Miya.”
“And what about it? I’m comfortable.” He whines. “And just call me Atsumu. How can ya still call me by my last name when my tongue’s been in yer mouth?”
“If you keep talking, I will punch you.” Sakusa threatens and he means it.
Atsumu doesn’t seem to pick up on that.
Sakusa closes his eyes, silently praying for his exasperation to dissipate. “What?”
“Are ya ticklish?”
He opens his eyes. “Huh?”
“Yer not answerin’ me.” Sakusa feels hands creep up his hoodie once again before he can do anything about it. “Guess I’ll have to find out.”
“Wait, I told you your hands are too cold—” Sakusa’s cut off abruptly by fingers digging into his sides, making him burst out into loud laughter, “Miya— hey, Atsumu, stop!”
Atsumu gasps excitedly, instantly retracting his hands. “You called me Atsumu! If all I needed to do to get ya to do that was make you laugh, ya could’ve just said so!”
Sakusa turns around with a vicious glare, trying to catch his breath. “I’m going to punch you.”
“No, ya won’t.”
Sakusa dives forward with a fist in the air, fully prepared to hit him, before he’s being held back by Ukai and Kiyoko, while Atsumu is being dragged away bodily by his manager, who mumbles something like ‘You would have deserved that’ .
“Okaaaaaay,” Ukai says pointedly, “Maybe, we should try doing something else.”
Sakusa ends up sitting at a table for two, face to face with Atsumu, with a tall glass of ice cream positioned on the table between them. Sakusa can see where this is going and he’s read this part of the script enough times to know what they’re going to have to do.
“For fuck’s sake,” Atsumu beats him to it, “This is the almost kiss scene, isn’t it?”
Sakusa narrows his eyes at him. “Don’t act like this is the worst thing in the world. If anything, I should be the one complaining right now.”
“Is anyone else seein’ this shit?” Atsumu asks, looking around the room, “Am I the only one seein’ this rookie bein’ really fuckin’ rude to someone who’s like, I don’t know… fifteen years his senior?”
“Maybe, if said senior wasn’t such an annoying, cocky asshole, this wouldn’t be happening to him.” Sakusa throws back at him.
“ Maybe , if the rookie wasn’t such a stuck up, self-righteous prick, this wouldn’t be so goddamn hard to do—“
“Holy shit. Just eat the fucking ice cream.” Suna interrupts.
Thank you, Ukai mouths to him. The manager merely bows his head.
“You two know what scene this is.” Ukai says tiredly, “Just go ahead and do your thing and please… please try not to kill each other. Your faces are expensive.”
Atsumu and Sakusa reach for their respective spoons in unison, grabbing them with pointed displeasure.
“And… action.” Ukai says, clapping his hand once in the action of a slate.
“So, Rui,” Atsumu starts, seamlessly transitioning from himself to Takeru in the span of half a second, “Are the rumors true? I heard that they want you to marry the Sato family’s oldest daughter.”
Not in the mood to lose to him today, Sakusa pushes himself to forget about his irritation, falling into character.
“I guess so.” He says, taking a small bite of his ice cream.
Damn. He’s not a big fan of mint chocolate.
“Then,” Atsumu starts, avoiding eye contact, playing with his spoon, like he’s nervous. “How do you feel about that?”
Sakusa clenches his fingers around his spoon and stops chewing, because the script tells him he has to be tense. “Why does it matter how I feel?”
“Of course, it does.” Atsumu says softly, in such a gentle way, so unlike the real him that Sakusa’s heart skips a beat.
“You’re my best friend, aren’t you? So… it matters to me.”
Sakusa looks up to meet Atsumu’s eyes and they’re shining. He stares at him in such a naturally tender way that it makes him wonder whether it’s still acting or not. And he guesses that’s how you know an actor is good at what they do.
When even their damn co-star can’t tell.
It feels like a magnetic pull that he can’t drag himself away from when he leans forward, as if being reeled in by Atsumu’s charm.
Takeru’s, he keeps reminding himself. This is Takeru and he is Rui.
Sakusa’s gaze goes from the man’s eyes, to his nose, to his pinkish cheeks, then down to his lips. As they get closer and closer, Sakusa inhales lightly and smells… was that strawberry?
Was Atsumu wearing strawberry flavored chapstick? Holy hell.
Atsumu’s eyes lower down to stare at Sakusa’s lips and he seems to tense up at the sight of it. Once again, he isn’t sure whether it’s acting or not.
Just as Sakusa is about to say his line, he sees Atsumu’s tongue poke out of his lips.
He chokes on a small piece of chocolate and accidentally spits it in Atsumu’s face.
“What in the name of fu—” Atsumu sputters, leaning back and frantically reaching for the tissues that Suna is already wordlessly handing him from behind. “Fuck you! Ya meant to do that, didn’t you?!”
Sakusa’s cheeks blush furiously as he reaches for his own tissues from Kiyoko to wipe his mouth with. “Why would I mean to do that?!”
Suna, Ukai, and Kiyoko sigh to themselves on the sidelines.
“Okay,” Ukai lowers his head, “Let’s do something else.”
“Now, where can we go wrong with a nice, good, slow dance scene, eh?” Ukai says encouragingly, more for himself than for anyone else, “It’s cute, it’s warm, and you’ve probably already done it for a PE class once or twice. Easy like Sunday morning.”
“I can already picture so many different ways that this could go wrong.” Suna mutters to himself, crossing his arms as he leans against the wall.
“The only thing I’m worrying about right now is which of them will be the one to throw the first punch.” Kiyoko says, with one hand holding onto something hidden in her bag.
Suna raises his eyebrows. “What are you holding? That isn’t pepper spray or something, is it? ‘Cause Atsumu had a can once and tried spraying it into a corner of the room to test how strong it is and everyone ended up having to evacuate so—”
Kiyoko shakes her head, stopping him. “It’s an air horn. I’m gonna press it to make them stop if things get out of hand.”
Suna holds back a laugh. “You sure are something to be able to be Sakusa Kiyoomi’s manager.”
Kiyoko looks up at him. “I could say the same about you being Miya Atsumu’s manager.”
“Childhood best friend too, actually.”
Kiyoko shrugs. “Even worse.”
“You have absolutely no fucking idea.” Suna sighs, “This is a goddamn headache. Their chemistry is insane… or it would be if they stopped trying to kill each other every other minute.”
Kiyoko bites her lip. “I think it’s because of that chemistry that they’re trying to kill each other every other minute.”
Suna snorts. “You think I don’t know that?”
“So,” Ukai claps, “Like it says in the script, this scene is supposed to have a very… domestic feel to it. You two are at home, just the two of you, listening to 80s music, and slow dancing in the living room wearing nothing but your boxers. It’s supposed to be peaceful and tender. You know what I’m trying to say?”
“Yes, we know.” Atsumu huffs, before turning his attention back to Sakusa with a glare. “You better not ruin it this time.”
Sakusa rolls his eyes. “You’re such a diva. It was just a little ice cream on your face.”
“ I’m the diva. Yer tellin’ me I’m the diva,” He scoffs, “Are ya hearin’ yerself right now? Mr. Don’t-Talk-To-Me-When-I’m-Getting-My-Makeup-Done and Mr. Don’t-Touch-Me-Your-Hands-Are-Cold, Mr. Fuckin’—”
His angry rant is cut off by I Melt With You suddenly playing from the bluetooth speakers and Ukai motioning for them to start dancing.
Sakusa sighs, holding a hand out. “Let’s just get this over with so we can go home, Miya.”
“I said to call me Atsumu.” He says, getting huffier by the second, but taking Sakusa’s hand, anyway. “I bet ya can’t even dance.”
Sakusa pulls Atsumu closer, a little too harshly. “You don’t know shit.”
Atsumu steps closer, looking him straight in the eye, and they’re so close that the tips of their noses are nearly touching.
He tries to act like he isn’t bewildered by their sudden closeness, desperately swallowing down whatever noise was about to come out of his mouth.
In the midst of trying to get his heart rate in check, he accidentally steps on Sakusa’s foot.
“Ouch, you bastard!” Sakusa hisses, “You meant to do that!”
“Why would I mean to do that?!” Atsumu argues, echoing the man’s words from earlier.
Sakusa doesn’t take that lightly, lifting his foot subtly, and landing it right on top of Atsumu’s big toe, hard.
“Mother fucker.” Atsumu cries out, bending down to hold his foot. “Wow, now that was on purpose, ya fuckin’ shitstain.”
Sakusa smirks. “You deserved that.”
Atsumu pauses, straightening up decidedly, before reaching for his phone in his pocket, only to toss it to Suna. He catches it easily.
“What the fuck?” Suna says, blinking at the latest iPhone in his hands. “Thank you?”
“Keep it safe.” Atsumu says, folding up his sleeves, before lunging for Sakusa. “‘Cause I’m about to beat this bitch up.”
And Sakusa is fully aware of the fact that he’s been completely unprofessional and acting nothing like himself ever since they’d started working together, but it’s almost like he can’t help it when he lunges back, reaching for Atsumu’s collar.
“Great, ‘cause I’ve wanted to ruin that pretty face of yours since the first d—”
Atsumu and Sakusa instantly let go of each other, hands flying up to cover their ears. Everyone in the room does the same thing.
They all turn to Kiyoko standing proudly in a corner, air horn in hand, raised above her head.
It lasts for almost ten entire seconds.
When it stops, there is only a long, meaningful silence as they all stare at Kiyoko Shimizu with what could only be described as a mixture of pure admiration and sheer terror.
She huffs indignantly, straightening her jacket. “That is enough.”
“Miss Kiyoko, I’ll have you know that if I wasn’t too gay to function, I would’ve fallen in love with you just then.” Suna smiles, impressed.
Atsumu turns to Sakusa. “Wait… did I just hear you say that you thought my face was pretty?”
Sakusa closes his eyes, and he’s never done this before in his life, but he starts praying for strength. His mom would be so proud of him.
“God. I hate you. I hate you so much. I’ve never hated anyone more.”
“But you think I’m pretty.”
“And… scene.” Suna mumbles to himself.
“I’m sorry, Ukai-san.” Kiyoko says looking genuinely apologetic, “But I think I have an idea on how to help them get along.”
“Well, the floor is yours.” He says, “Because God knows I’m all run out of those.”
She nods, decidedly. “Leave them to me.”
The day ends with Miya Atsumu and Sakusa Kiyoomi sitting side by side in Shimizu Kiyoko’s appointed Time Out Corner, hands forcibly joined together between them. Fingers interlaced and everything. Atsumu has his face buried in the juncture of his arm, while Sakusa hides his own in his free hand.
“Fuck,” Suna is having the absolute time of his life, snapping pictures from different angles, as he wipes away tears from all his laughing. “Oh god, wait ‘til Samu gets a load of this shit.”
“This isn’t so bad. I think it’s gonna be an interesting story to tell in interviews.” Ukai comments. “Like how Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams didn’t get along in The Notebook and ended up dating for three years after the movie? I think this is something like that.”
“This is nothing like that.” Sakusa says gloomily.
Kiyoko stands in front of them, arms crossed. “You aren’t allowed to let go of each other’s hands! Not until you apologize to each other and promise to be nice and professional.”
Sakusa has refused to consider any moment so far in his career to be his lowest point, but he thinks this was pretty close to being exactly that.
“Fuck! I hate it here!” Atsumu yells into his arm, “Fine! I’ll be nice! I’m sorry, okay?!”
Sakusa takes a deep breath and decides to swallow his pride.
“Fine. I’m sorry, too. I’ll be professional and…” He grits his teeth, “... nice.”
“Great!” Kiyoko says, her demeanor quickly shifting from strict to cheery. “See? You two can be friends as long as you give each other a chance!”
Atsumu and Sakusa instantly rip their hands away from each other, wiping their sweaty palms on their jeans.
Demon. Sakusa thinks, as he glares at his manager. Hell-spawn woman.
“Alright, that’s a wrap for today.” Ukai says exhaustedly, like he’d just spent the day carrying the weight of the entire world on his shoulders. “See you all and… let’s do this all again… tomorrow.”
There’s a chorus of groans.
Sakusa stares down at his hand and it twitches as he thinks about the feeling of Atsumu’s hand in his, like a lingering warmth.
Like a spark that he finds himself looking for again, now that he’s felt it.
When he looks up, he sees Miya Atsumu staring at his own hand, a little like he was feeling the exact same thing.
“So, we agree we don’t want a repeat of what happened yesterday.” Atsumu says, as he plops down onto the seat beside Sakusa.
“Obviously.” He answers, without sparing him a glance.
“And we agree that we can not like each other and still be perfectly civil and professional?” Atsumu adds, “Because, listen. This is my comeback performance after a year long hiatus and I’m not about to fuck this shit up and I’m not letting you, of all people, fuck it up for me, either.”
Sakusa turns to glare at him.
“For your information, doing this film is just as important to me as it is to you, if not more.” He says sharply, “So, no, I’m not ruining this for you and you better not ruin it for me.”
“Good.” Atsumu says, flipping his hair back with all the arrogance in the world, “At least we’re on the same page. Good talk, Omi-kun.”
Sakusa breathes through his nose. “Just so you know, this doesn’t mean I like you. I’m merely tolerating you. For the sake of this damn movie.”
“We don’t have to like each other, Omi-Omi. Do ya know how many movies I’ve done with people I didn’t like?” Atsumu laughs, “We just have to be professional. And though ya haven’t done a very good job at showing it so far, yer supposedly an expert at that, aren’t ya?”
“Sure.” Sakusa says, gritting his teeth. “As long as you behave.”
Kiyoko leans towards Suna, motioning for him to lean down so she can whisper in his ear. “This is about to get bad, isn’t it?”
“Did you bring your air horn?” He asks.
“No.” She says, looking horrified. “Should I have?”
Suna shakes his head, zipping his backpack open, letting her take a peek. “I brought… this.”
“Wow.” She exclaims quietly, “I haven’t seen one of those since I was in high school.”
“What the hell are you two whispering about over there?” Atsumu asks as he swivels around in his seat, narrowing his eyes at them.
Suna instantly zips his bag closed, looking up to smile sweetly at him. “Nothing that concerns you. Go on and rehearse your lines or something. There’s another long day ahead of you.”
“Hmm…” Atsumu hums suspiciously, slowly turning back around to flip through his script. “Whatever. I don’t want any funny business later, ya hear me?”
“Course.” Suna says, crossing his arms. “When have I ever partaken in any funny business?”
The day ends with a jumbo sized jar labelled Sakuatsu Jar sitting on a table beside Ukai, that had already been filled with fifteen bills in the span of three hours.
“That’s not your line!” Sakusa yells, a hair away from getting carried away and getting sued for first degree murder, “That is literally not your line!”
“It’s called improvising, ya idiot! Haven’t ya heard of it before? I thought you were supposed to be an actor!”
“You egotistical fucking asshole—”
“You pretentious, pathetic excuse of a—”
“Sakuatsu Jar.” Kiyoko and Suna say in unison.
The two pause in the middle of their squabble, looking at each other.
“This isn’t going well, is it.” Atsumu says.
“No.” Sakusa answers.
“I’m not gonna lie, if this goes on three more times, I’m gonna run out of bills to give and I’m gonna have to put my credit card in there.” Atsumu admits.
“Don’t you dare.”
Kiyoko turns to Suna, as if looking for sympathy. He merely shrugs, like he’s past the point of being tired and has accepted their fate.
“I’m just glad we don’t live too far, honestly.” Suna says, “I need a fucking nap.”
“Really?” Kiyoko says, surprised. “Kiyoomi-kun doesn’t live too far from here, either. He’s only about fifteen minutes away.”
“Wow, that’s…” Suna blinks, a devious smile slowly forming on his lips. “Interesting information. Say, Kiyoko-san, would you indulge me in this idea that I have?”
“If it is what I think it is, then it’s a yes.” She says instantly, “It’s definitely a yes for me.”
“What’s going on here?” Sakusa asks with Atsumu right behind him, their eyebrows furrowed after having to each drop yet another bill in the jar.
“Oh, we were just having a conversation about how we’re gonna get home.” Kiyoko says, “See, I have to stay here for a bit longer to discuss something with the producers, and I know you wouldn’t wanna stay here any longer than you have to.”
“What? They don’t have anything to discuss with you…” Ukai mumbles, questioningly.
Suna shushes him gently.
“Anyway,” Kiyoko continues, “I found out from my new friend, Suna-kun, that you two actually don’t live too far away from each other! So, I figured…” She turns to Sakusa with a bright smile, “Why don’t you just hitch a ride with them for today?”
They both gape.
“Demon.” Sakusa says under his breath, “Hell-spawn woman. Deserter.”
“Fuck that!” Atsumu yells, “Don’t I get a fuckin’ say in this? I’m not gettin’ into a car with him!”
“You sure about that? Because again, Sakuatsu Jar.” Suna deadpans, boredly pointing to the said jar. “And I know you don’t have any bills left in your wallet, so you’d do well to just listen to me.”
Atsumu glares at him, like he’d never been more betrayed in his life.
“Cocksucker.” He seethes.
“Proud to be one.” Suna smirks, looking way too happy with himself. “Just one cock, though. Your brother’s, actually.”
Atsumu’s only response is a loud, high-pitched screech.
By the time they drop Sakusa off at his place, because of both Suna and Kiyoko’s insistence that the two of them sit next to each other in the back seat, Atsumu has a blooming bruise on his bicep, Sakusa has a scratch mark on the back of his hand, and Suna has a ten minute clip on his phone of the two wrestling each other down, all the while yelling a fresh collection of very colorful swear words that Suna had never heard before in his life.
( Cocking fuckhole shit sounded like it’d make a good title for a diss track.)
Suna feels like maybe if he watched the clip back muted, it’d look a lot like an angry sex tape.
Once Sakusa had stomped his way into his building and Atsumu had huffily plopped himself down on the passenger’s seat, slamming the door, it’s only then that Suna turns to him and says;
“Well. That was strangely sexy.”
“Just fuckin’ take me home before I throw my shoe at ya.”
“Oh and Atsumu?” Suna adds, a smile forming on his face.
“What.” He spits out, “What more could you possibly want from me?”
“Nothing.” He shrugs, “I just wanna point out that you’re hard.”
Atsumu looks down, pauses, and then closes his legs, looking out the window. “Fuck you.”
“No thanks. Try asking him, though.”
With that, Atsumu really does chuck his shoe at him.
“No. Kiyoko. I’m not doing it. I can’t do it.” Sakusa says, all the while popping more mints into his mouth.
“Kiyoomi-kun, I’m sorry to tell you this, but no one dragged you here.” She says, “In fact, you were the one who dragged us to leave the house thirty minutes earlier than usual. I hadn’t even finished doing my makeup. If I didn’t know any better, I’d think you were actually excited for today.”
“Ugh,” Sakusa groans as he pops the cap of his chapstick off and starts applying a generous amount on his lips, “I can’t believe you’re forcing me to do this.”
“I am literally just standing here.”
“Uh, guys?” Ukai interrupts, walking up to them, staring at Sakusa like he’s a foreign creature, “The mattress is set up. We can start anytime you’re ready. Don’t worry too much, Sakusa-kun. It’s not gonna be anything too intense. Just some cuddling and a little kissing, alright? Think of this as a dress rehearsal.”
“Who’s worrying?” Sakusa says, rapidly combing through his hair, “I’m not worrying. Let’s get this over with.”
Kiyoko hides her mouth with her hand and whispers, “He didn’t get any sleep last night.”
“Ah,” Ukai nods, like he understands, “That’s okay. When I checked up on Atsumu-kun a while ago, I overheard him asking his manager, in verbatim, ‘No, this is a valid concern. It’d be so embarrassing. Do you think he’d believe me if I used the it’s just my phone in my pocket excuse?’”
“Let’s get this shit over with!” Atsumu suddenly yells from the other side of the room, dressed in nothing but an oversized white dress shirt and boxers. “Omi-kun, ya ready or are ya scared?”
“Who the fuck is scared?” Sakusa argues, but it’s lacking his usual bite.
His eyes can’t help but roam over Atsumu’s body and he gulps as he makes his way towards the mattress set up in the middle of the room.
He adjusts his half open dress shirt, similar to the one Atsumu has on, except it’s in black, and drops himself down onto the mattress.
“Just get over here already.”
If Atsumu was feeling any nerves, Sakusa doesn’t see it as the man easily sits down right beside him, scooting closer and closer, until their bare thighs are touching.
The skin on Miya Atsumu’s legs are as smooth as a baby’s buttocks. Sakusa could’ve lived his whole life without knowing that.
“Well, here we are. Tell us what ya wanna see, Ukai-san!”
“So, this scene is on Page…” He flips through the papers swiftly, until he finds what he’s looking for, “Fifty-Seven. This is the part where they’d just gone through a lot, they’d just had a long day, and now they’re just lying together in bed, face to face.”
God help me, Sakusa thinks.
“And so, they’re lying face to face...” Ukai says, mimicking what he wants with his hands, “And they’re… basking in each other’s warmth and finding comfort in each other’s presence and touch.”
I’m gonna fucking die, Atsumu thinks.
“And after a few minutes of staring at each other lovingly, caressing each other’s skin, you slowly come together and kiss.” Ukai says, slowly pressing his palms together, “Tenderly, with all the love and fondness that you can muster, making it build up into… something more passionate. Think you can do that?”
Not without losing my mind.
“Of course, we can.” Sakusa says, fluffing up his pillow to find something to do with his hands.
Not without embarrassing myself.
“Easy peasy.” Atsumu adds, already lying down and positioning himself on his side.
“Okay. Whenever you two are ready.” Ukai says, taking a few steps back to give them enough space to get into their zone.
Sakusa takes a deep, calming breath before lowering himself down on his side, only to come face to face with Miya Atsumu, who seemed to already be in character.
His blonde hair is splayed almost artfully against his pillow, his cheeks slightly tinted pink and Sakusa couldn’t be sure whether that’s the makeup or just him. His dress shirt is riding up ever so slightly, making some of the skin on his hip peek out.
He looked so… undone.
He completely lies down, as carefully as he can as to not rearrange the covers, their faces close enough for him to feel Atsumu’s breath against his lips.
For a moment, they just stare at each other. They don’t touch yet, giving themselves some time to completely get into their characters and immerse themselves into the scene.
The expression on Atsumu’s face is unreadable, but it’s something soft. It’s something free of his usual unfounded animosity.
He wonders what it is that’s so different about today. Why he couldn’t find the energy to argue or find something to complain about. He doesn’t know why today, just today, he doesn’t have to fight an urge to just get this all over with.
Right now, Sakusa realizes that all he really wants to do... is touch him. In the back of his mind, he thinks that maybe that’s all he’s really wanted to do all along.
It’s Atsumu who breaks the stillness, reaching a hand out to gently run his fingers through Sakusa’s curly locks.
He can’t help but close his eyes at the feeling.
“Your hair looks pretty today.” Atsumu whispers. His breath smells like coffee. “You look pretty today.”
He isn’t sure whether it’s Atsumu or Takeru speaking, so he decides to play it safe and go with, “That feels nice.”
Half because he thinks Rui would say that and half just because it’s the truth.
When Sakusa blinks his eyes back open, Atsumu is smiling softly. He almost can’t help himself when he brings a hand to the man’s hip to lightly thumb at the soft skin peeking out, and he thinks he feels him shiver a little bit at the touch.
“Your hands are so warm.” Atsumu says, subconsciously pressing closer to him.
Sakusa reaches his free hand up to hold onto Atsumu’s wrist, bringing the hand in his hair down to his cheek, before pressing a tender kiss into his palm.
“Yours are always so damn cold.”
Atsumu snickers, scooting even closer, until the tips of their noses are touching.
“You gonna warm them up for me, then?”
Sakusa presses their foreheads together, giving him a little eskimo kiss. He thinks he feels Atsumu’s breath stutter at that and he takes it as a win.
“How do you want me to do that?”
The exhale that Atsumu lets out is fragile and shaky as Sakusa creeps the hand in his shirt up a little higher, running it over the side of Atsumu’s torso.
In response to that, Atsumu shuffles closer, slotting a strong thigh in between Sakusa’s legs.
Holy fuck. Dear God.
Sakusa knows he’s losing his grip on himself but he’s not going to lose. He is not going to lose. So, he takes it up a notch and rests his hand on Atsumu’s thigh (and god, it’s a muscular one), and squeezes it purposefully.
The silence in the room is almost deafening, so the little squeak Atsumu lets out at that, could just as well have been a scream.
“So?” Sakusa whispers teasingly, pressing his nose into Atsumu’s jaw, “Are you gonna kiss me or not, Miya?”
“Fuck you.” Atsumu grits out, lifting Sakusa’s head with a finger under his chin, and finally pressing their lips together.
Ukai had told them to be gentle and loving.
This wasn’t exactly that.
It’s a little too heated, too insistent, Atsumu moaning low, quiet profanities into his mouth as Sakusa’s hands roam all over the man’s body.
Atsumu still has a leg resting between his thighs and he, without warning, presses it up against Sakusa’s crotch.
He was already sporting a half chub so he can’t really help the way he lets himself grind down, just the tiniest bit, to give himself some much needed relief.
“Fuck,” He breathes hotly into Atsumu’s half open mouth, “Oh, fuck.”
“Touch me too.” Atsumu sighs quietly, in a tone that sounded almost desperate, like he was begging, as Sakusa ducks down to press kisses against his neck, “Touch me, Omi.”
Just as Sakusa is about to reach down in between them and chuck his hand into Atsumu’s boxers, they’re interrupted by an almost frantic voice.
“Okay! Cut! Wowza! That sure escalated quickly! ” Ukai exclaims, clapping his hands loudly, like he’s slightly panicked, “Amazing! Showstopping! Legendary! Right, everyone?”
Atsumu and Sakusa freeze completely, eyes wide, staring at each other horrified, hands stilling in each other’s shirts.
“Oh, wow.” Kiyoko says in a way that sounded like she didn’t even mean to say it out loud.
Suna whistles from beside her, lowering his phone. “Wow, am I glad I filmed that.”
“Well, with that, I don’t think we need to give them any more chemistry lessons, don’t you think?” Ukai says, turning to look at the rest of his crew. “Because honestly, it just felt morally incorrect to be watching that.”
It’s like everyone comes to a silent agreement that official filming can start as soon as possible, as Atsumu and Sakusa rip apart from each other, coughing awkwardly, straightening their clothes, and avoiding eye contact as they sit on opposite ends of the mattress.
Because they both felt that and they both heard that.
Atsumu had called him Omi. (Again.) Highly unprofessional for someone who’s supposedly been doing this whole acting thing his entire life. Sakusa was also literally a second away from wrapping a hand around the man’s cock, and he would have done it, if nobody had stopped them. Also highly unprofessional for someone who took pride in just how professional he was.
They’d both completely forgotten where they were and what they were supposed to be doing. And now, they were both really fucking hard.
Wasn’t that just the cherry on top of this Layered Cake of Horny Horrors?
“Great. Glad that’s over with.” Sakusa says, hurriedly getting up and pulling his dress shirt down to hide his lower half. “I’m gonna go get a drink.”
“Me too.” Atsumu says, heading straight for the water dispenser without a single glance at anyone else.
Once they’re successfully out of hearing range from everyone, Atsumu grabs two paper cups and hands one to Sakusa.
“So. Funny question. Feel free to pretend I never asked this if ya think it’s weird. But wanna go home together later and fuck this out of our systems?”
Sakusa doesn’t even look at him as he takes the paper cup Atsumu hands him, and fills it with water. “What do you prefer?”
“I’m asking if you top or if you bottom.” He clarifies.
Atsumu tries not to choke on his spit.
“I’m down with both, but I’ve mostly topped.”
“Good, ‘cause I’ve mostly bottomed.” He says, pausing to gulp his water down, before swiftly tossing the cup into the trash. “Your place.”
Atsumu nods, raising a shaky paper cup to his own lips as Sakusa casually walks away, like they hadn’t talked about anything out of the ordinary.
“Of course. My place.”
It’s only once he’s hydrated, walking back towards Suna, that the reality of his situation sinks in completely.
Wait. Atsumu thinks. Holy shit. Did I really just make plans to have hate sex with Sakusa Kiyoomi?
“Atsumu,” Suna says, snapping his fingers in front of his face, “What the fuck is wrong with you?”
Atsumu shakes his head, blinking at his manager. “Nothing. Nothing’s wrong with me.”
Suna narrows his eyes, examining his friend, a knowing smirk forming on his lips.
“You guys are gonna fuck, huh?”
“The hell we are!” Atsumu glares at him, huffing as he walks away, brushing past his shoulder. “Just because we have untouchable onscreen chemistry doesn’t mean we actually wanna have sex with each other, okay?”
“Oooooooh, fuck,” Sakusa moans loudly, spreading his legs wider, clutching onto the sheets beneath him for dear life. “Right there. Harder.”
“Fuck, Omi.” Atsumu whines, scissoring him open, two knuckles deep into his dripping hole, “If yer this loud with just my fingers, how pretty are ya gonna sound with my cock inside ya?”
“Shut the fuck up.” Sakusa pants, pressing down insistently, fucking himself onto Atsumu’s fingers. “ God, that’s good. Add another one.”
Atsumu obeys, slipping his index finger in along with the other two, making Sakusa hiss, canting his hips.
“Yes.” He sighs, eyes rolling into the back of his head before closing them completely, losing himself in the feeling. “Just like that.”
“Yer so fuckin’ sexy.” Atsumu groans, leaning down to take one of Sakusa’s nipples in his mouth, sucking on it. “ So goddamn hot. Christ, I hate it.”
“Fuck , Atsumu,” Sakusa groans, a hand flying out to pull at Atsumu’s hair as he tightens around the man’s fingers, “Don’t do that if you don’t want me to come.”
Atsumu presses a wet kiss against his pink nipple, looking up mischievously.
“Hmm,” He hums, “Ya think you can come twice tonight?”
“I’m not risking that.” Sakusa says breathily, pawing at Atsumu’s wrist. “Get the fuck in me right now.”
“Always so rude.” Atsumu tsks, slowly pulling his fingers out, wiping them on his bedsheets for him to deal with later. “Someone’s oughta teach ya some goddamn manners.”
Sakusa grabs the condom and lube by his head and chucks it at Atsumu, wordlessly.
He catches it but instead of putting the condom on and popping the lube open and lathering some on his cock, he hums as if thinking about something, before pushing Sakusa’s legs closed, and climbing over him.
“What the hell are you doing?”
Atsumu scoots up until Sakusa’s head is caged between his almost unrealistically thick thighs and he looks down at him, holding the tip of his dick to his lips and asks, “Suck me off?”
Sakusa huffs and rolls his eyes as he reaches up to stroke it like it’s a chore, acting like his own cock didn’t just twitch at those words.
“What would you have done if I’d said no?”
“Then, I’d say sorry. But ya were lookin’ at my cock like it’s a fuckin’ dessert, Omi.” Atsumu pants, rubbing Sakusa’s cheek with his thumb, “Open yer fuckin’ mouth.”
Sakusa is no stranger to sucking cock. He’d call himself an expert, even. He was almost as good at it as he was at acting. He may not have done it for too many people, but he has done it a lot. His experience shows.
“Oh,” Atsumu moans, his thighs shaking almost instantly at the warmth that surrounds him, holding on tightly to the bedpost to ground himself, as Sakusa hollows his cheeks and presses his tongue against the underside of his cock. “ Fuck, baby, that feels good.”
He gently and shallowly thrusts in and out of his mouth, Sakusa taking it easily, humming as he does it, sending vibrations that Atsumu can feel down his spine.
Damn. He doesn’t remember the last time he’d been so vocal over a blowjob.
He feels himself getting closer and closer to the edge quicker than he usually would, so he pulls himself off.
“Christ,” He breathes, “Yer really good at that.”
“Good enough for you to start fucking me already?” Sakusa asks, wiping his drool on Atsumu’s pillow, which he’ll also have to deal with later.
“Impatient, are we?” Atsumu smirks, as he positions himself, stroking his cock lazily, using Sakusa’s spit as lube, as he pokes the tip against Sakusa’s rim.
The man hisses, hips twitching insistently as Atsumu rubs it back and forth, teasingly.
“Atsumu,” He growls, reaching for the man’s cock as if to put it in himself, “Hurry up.”
Atsumu’s running on his final shred of control too, so as he hurriedly rips the condom packet open and rolls it onto his dick with expert hands, he asks, “Want it hard?”
Sakusa moans, head knocking back into the pillow, as he holds his own thighs open and says, “As hard as you fucking can.”
“God,” Atsumu almost cries, pushing Sakusa’s thighs back until his knees touch his shoulders, and his legs are thrown over Atsumu’s own, finally slowly sinking into him, “ God, yer hot. Where the hell have ya been all my life?”
“Haaaaah,” Sakusa keens, back bowing, toes already curling, as Atsumu starts to slowly thrust in and out of him, “I thought… I told you… to fuck me hard.”
“What the hell are ya in such a hurry for?” Atsumu complains, arms shaking from the exertion of holding himself up while also trying not to come in twenty seconds like a fucking teenager.
“Because you’ve been teasing me with your fucking fingers for nearly thirty minutes, Atsumu,” Sakusa bites back, digging his nails into the skin of his back, “I want you to make me come and make me come now.”
Oh, he means that. Atsumu can tell, as he looks into Sakusa’s blazing eyes. He really means that.
“Yeah, yeah. Remember ya asked for it when ya can’t walk right tomorrow.” Atsumu says, taking a deep breath. “Here ya go.”
That’s the only warning he gets before he all but slams into the man with full force.
All that comes out of Sakusa Kiyoomi is a strangled moan straight from the depths of his chest.
“Yes,” He gasps more than says, like he’s never been more relieved in his life, as he uses one hand to press against the head of the bed, and the other to dig into Atsumu’s back, “Yeah, shit, Atsumu, fuck me like you mean it.”
“Look at ya,” Atsumu grunts, pounding into him almost animalistically, watching Sakusa’s leaking cock bounce against his sweaty, toned stomach, folded in half, moaning garbled profanities as tears leak down the sides of his face, “Look how fuckin’ bad ya want it.”
“Oh.” Sakusa lets out, his entire body jumping as Atsumu hits a certain spot inside him.
He reaches down to pump himself frantically, eyes squeezed shut. “Right there. God, right there, don’t fucking stop.”
“ Shit Omi, ya look so fucking good touchin’ yerself like that,” Atsumu says, fingers digging into the bedpost, “Come on my cock, baby.”
The bed springs are squeaking, the headboard banging against the wall loudly, the bedsheets coming undone as Atsumu keeps pounding into Sakusa’s abused hole, as fast and as hard as he thinks is even humanly possible.
The man beneath him lets out a desperate sob, his hand quickening in its pace, his entire face screwing up in a way that Atsumu will never forget.
“Come for me, Omi."
Sakusa keens, body twisting unnaturally as he comes, cock twitching once, twice, before making a mess all over his fist, his torso, his neck, his face, up to the wooden headboard above them.
That sight is all he needs.
“Oh shit,” Atsumu grits out, as he thrusts into him deeply one last time.
He blacks out as he comes, he’s pretty sure he’s shaking, and that he’s releasing an entire string of swear words with his face buried in Sakusa’s neck, but it’s all blurry.
All he feels is the euphoric twist in his gut and the overwhelming relief as he lets it all go inside the man beneath him, who’s still shivering from the aftershocks of his own orgasm.
By the time they both come down from their highs, they’re breathing like they’d just run a 100 meter marathon. Sakusa has an arm over his eyes, shaky legs still thrown over Atsumu’s shoulders, while Atsumu is barely holding himself up from crushing the man underneath his full weight.
“Fuck,” Sakusa breathes out, slapping Atsumu’s chest, the stickiness finally getting to him, “Get the fuck off me.”
Atsumu groans as he slowly pulls out, making the both of them hiss at the feeling. When he finally does, he collapses onto his back next to Sakusa. They let out a sigh of relief in unison.
More than just the relief of a really good orgasm after a long dry spell, it was also the staggering relief of finally getting rid of all that misplaced angry, pent up tension.
Atsumu pulls his used condom off and reaches for his wet wipes on the bedside table, handing some to Sakusa. They both silently and tiredly wipe themselves down, side by side.
Once they’re done with cleanup and are lying on their backs, they’re left only with a comforting peace and a sense of contentment being in each other’s presence that’s felt by both but left unsaid.
“Huh.” Atsumu observes, “Maybe hate-fucking is effective.”
Sakusa can’t help but silently agree.
Atsumu weakly turns his head to look at him. “Was that a one time thing or are we doin’ that again? ‘Cause I’ll be real and say that that was the best sex I’ve had in fuckin’ years and that’s sayin’ something ‘cause I’ve had a lot of it.”
Sakusa wants to glare at the man for having the sheer nerve to ask him whether or not he would ever willingly touch him again. And he would be glaring , if he didn’t just come so hard that he saw more than just stars.
He’s pretty sure there were planets, too. He feels like he might have orbited the entire Solar System and then returned to Earth in the span of a single orgasm.
He decides on something then and there.
“What if we just do this until the end of filming?” He suggests carefully, “Having sex helps us not kill each other. So, technically, it’d purely be for professional reasons.”
Atsumu can’t help the smile that makes its way to his face. Sakusa Kiyoomi, was admittedly, kind of cute.
He doesn’t know how to tell him that nothing about the way they’d been acting from the moment they’d first met had been professional.
“Professional reasons.” Atsumu repeats, amused.
Sakusa nods, like he’s fully serious, keeping his eyes on the ceiling. “Completely.”
Atsumu bites back a laugh, humoring him. “Alright. Deal. For professional reasons.”
Sakusa closes his eyes. “Once I get some feeling back in my legs… we’ll sign a contract.”
“Okay.” Atsumu hums, closing his eyes too, basking in the comfortable silence and the ever pleasant post-coital afterglow.
A few seconds later, his eyes snap back open. “Wait. We’re signing a what?”
“I can’t believe yer takin’ all the fun out of bein’ fuck buddies.” Atsumu deadpans, staring down at the pen and paper laid out on his small kitchen table. “How do ya do it, Omi? How do ya suck the joy out of everythin’ good?”
“I’m not sucking the joy out of being fuck buddies, I’m being practical.” He says, pushing the paper closer to the man in front of him. “And professional, like I said. Just sign it.”
Atsumu pouts, narrowing his eyes suspiciously at the paper, before giving up and taking it.
“Fine. Let’s see what weird shit ya have written here.”
Miya Atsumu and Sakusa Kiyoomi’s Co-Stars With Benefits Arrangement Contract
1. The span of this arrangement will only last up to the very last day of filming. Anything past that is forbidden.
2. This arrangement will be kept top secret. For obvious reasons.
3. Absolutely no getting emotionally attached.
4. No kissing outside filming.
Atsumu immediately makes a face.
“What the hell do ya mean no kissing? We literally just had sex, we just kiss— oh. Wait. No, we didn't.”
“That falls into the no getting attached portion.” Sakusa says, crossing his arms. “Sex is one thing, but kissing is too intimate. We’re already gonna be doing a lot of that for the movie, so it’s best not to indulge off camera.”
Atsumu squirms. “Are ya sure about that one? I’m fine with everythin’ else, but sex without kissin’ just seems weird.”
“We did it just now, though. And it went perfectly fine.” Sakusa points out.
“Yeah, but that was…” Atsumu scratches his head, searching for an excuse, but he doesn’t find one. He sighs, deflating into his seat. “Yer so fuckin’ weird. God. Fine. No kissing.”
Sakusa motions insistently to the pen on the table and Atsumu grabs it sluggishly, signing one of the two blanks on the bottom of the paper.
He then hands it over to Sakusa, who does the same thing. He gives the document one last look over, before nodding contentedly.
“You keep this safe in your drawer or something.”
Atsumu purses his lips, taking the paper as he stands, folding it, before proceeding to chuck it in one of his drawers.
He turns to look at Sakusa, tiredly. “Are we good now, sir? Have I humored you enough today, my Lord?”
“If you were into that, you should’ve just told me.” Sakusa says casually, as he stands up, still slightly unstable on his legs.
Atsumu nearly chokes.
He puts on his coat and his shoes, getting ready to leave. “I’ll see you for filming then, Miya.”
Atsumu scoffs, opening the front door for him. “If you’ve already moaned my name as you came, might as well just call me it all the time, don’t ya think?”
Sakusa blushes slightly at that and Atsumu feels a little victorious at the sight.
He walks out the door and without turning around, says, “I’ll see you, Atsumu.”
Atsumu’s kind of glad that the man doesn’t turn around, so that he doesn’t get to see the stupid smile that he’s sure is plastered on his face.
“See ya soon, Omi-Omi!”
“Hey, Samu?” Atsumu says over the phone, as he helps Suna haul some of their luggage out of the trunk of the car. “We just got to the airport. Our flight’s in about an hour, I think.”
“Ah. Around two months, right?” His twin clarifies, “I know Suna’s gonna be there with ya so I’m not that worried, but fuckin’ take care of yerself out there, okay? Promise me.”
Atsumu would make fun of his brother’s protectiveness, but after everything that’s happened over the years, he knows that Osamu isn’t kidding around and that his concern isn’t unfounded.
“I will. I promise.”
“Okay… okay. ” Osamu says, exhaling like this is taking years off of his life. “Do well and have fun in Okinawa with Sakusa Kiyoomi. Try not to kill each other, please.”
“I told ya we’ve worked that out!” Atsumu argues, clicking his tongue. “Anyway, I’m giving the phone back to Sunarin. I’ll see ya in two months and I love ya! Say it back!”
“I love ya. See ya in two months.” Osamu says.
Atsumu smiles to himself and hands the phone back to his manager. “There ya go. Say goodbye to yer stupid boyfriend.”
As Atsumu fusses with his carrier, he thinks he hears Suna say things like, ‘Yes, you know I will’ ‘We’ll be fine’ ‘He’s doing a lot better, you can trust that much’ ‘Yes, I know, don’t worry, and I love you too’ and he almost rolls his eyes but doesn’t, because Kita had constantly reminded him that Osamu was only like this because of how much he cared about him, and so Atsumu was going to take it all in stride, like the good brother he is.
When Suna hangs up, Atsumu huffs out a laugh, “He worries too much, doesn’t he?”
“You can’t blame him.” Suna defends, starting to pull his luggage into the airport.
“I don’t.” Atsumu says easily, following behind him. “Anyway, is Omi here? I haven’t seen him in weeks!”
“You have sex one time and suddenly you’re excited to see him.” Suna smirks.
Atsumu scoffs, theatrically. “We didn’t have sex!”
Suna shoots him a deadpan stare.
“... Okay, so we had sex, whatever. Don’t tell anyone, ‘cause Omi will have my head if he finds out.” Atsumu admits, “But it helped, didn’t it? We don’t wanna kill each other anymore and everythin’.”
Suna faces forward, pursing his lips.
“I know I’ve been making fun of you guys, but I thought we were kidding. I’m not gonna tell you what to do ‘cause I know you already know what I’m gonna say, but just… be careful, alright?”
“I know. I will. I’ll be fine.” Atsumu assures, “I’m not plannin’ on gettin’ attached, Sunarin! My priority numero uno will always be the movie ‘n my career, alright?”
“Your priority numero uno right now should be taking care of yourself, you dumbass.”
“And that too.” Atsumu winks. “So, don’t worry. Omi and I aren’t gonna turn this into anythin’ messy. Now, where is he? I’m in the mood to annoy him.”
“Oh… well, they’re here.” Suna glances at his phone as it lights up with a few messages. “And I’m sure you’ll get all the opportunity for that later. You guys are sitting next to each other on the plane. The poor guy.”
“ Ooooh, fun.” Atsumu grins.
“Omi?” Atsumu calls out delicately, attempting to reach out and touch the man who resembled something akin to a wounded animal.
Sakusa, eyes remaining closed, raises a hand to stop him. “Don’t talk.”
“No, but Omi…” He tries again.
“Do not touch me.” Sakusa says, “Do not perceive me. Pretend you aren’t seeing anything.”
“Omi, but yer sweating.” Atsumu says, genuinely concerned. “And yer pale. I’d think you were airsick or somethin’ except we haven’t even taken off yet, so I’m wonderin’ if yer comin’ down with the flu or somethin’. Should we go and tell Ukai-san?”
Atsumu is about to stand up to do just that, until a clammy hand reaches out to hold onto his wrist.
“No. I’m not sick. Just…” Sakusa squeezes his eyes shut, taking deep breaths, “Just don’t… go anywhere.”
Atsumu cautiously sits back down, eyes focused on the man next to him.
“Omi, yer scarin' the hell outta me. What’s happening right now?”
Sakusa inhales deeply and then exhales shakily, hand still holding onto Atsumu’s wrist in a tight grip. After a moment’s hesitation, he speaks.
“I don’t like planes.”
Atsumu blinks rapidly, letting that information sink in. He doesn’t like… planes.
“Damn. That kinda sucks, Omi. I mean, yer a celebrity, y’know? We’ve gotta ride a lot of planes.”
“Gee, thanks a lot for that reminder. I did not know that.” Sakusa says robotically, “You’re really helping me out here. I appreciate it.”
Atsumu settles down, less worried now that he knows what’s going on. “Have ya never been on a plane before? Or are ya just like this every single time?”
“I can deal with bigger planes just fine now. I just make sure to knock out before we take off or listen to classical music or something.” Sakusa gulps, “But I’ve never been on a plane like this before. I never liked the idea of small planes. People say they fly a lot faster.”
“It’s not too different.” Atsumu comforts.
“I don’t like it.” Sakusa insists.
“Well,” Atsumu starts, craning his neck to look around the plane, “Where’s Kiyoko-san sitting? Wouldn’t she know what to do about this?”
“There’s nothing to do about this.” Sakusa says, still seemingly working on doing his breathing exercises, “It’s not a big deal. I just need to wait it out for a bit, that’s all.”
Atsumu bites his lower lip, worriedly. “You want me to swap seats with her?”
Sakusa shakes his head no. “I’m not a child, Atsumu.”
“Being scared of flying doesn’t make ya a child.” Atsumu assures, “Okay, but just… tell me if I can do anything to help, alright?”
Sakusa manages a weak smile at that, though his eyes remain closed. “You’re being scarily nice and agreeable today. What’d you have for breakfast?”
“I’m not about to be the asshole that was a dick to someone for bein’ scared on a plane. What kinda person do ya think I am?” He huffs, taking out a magazine from the pouch in front of him.
If he notices that the man hasn’t let go of his wrist, he doesn’t say anything about it.
Sakusa seems to calm down considerably after a few more minutes, alternating between looking out the window and taking peeks at the magazine in Atsumu’s hands.
That is, until the engine roars and the pilot’s booming voice tells them that they’re just a minute away from take off.
Sakusa very visibly tenses up at this, his breathing quickening up in pace again, squeezing his eyes shut. Atsumu inwardly panics, a little scared that it would transition into a panic attack of some sort.
“Hey, Omi? Ya gotta breathe, okay?” He comforts gently, resting his hand on his trembling arm. “Do those breathin’ exercises ya were doin’ a while ago.”
“Atsumu?” He says in a fragile voice, like he’s scared he’d go somewhere else.
Atsumu shushes him, pulling one of his jacket sleeves down, using it to wipe the cold sweat off Sakusa’s forehead.
“Yeah, that’s me. I’m here. And I’m calm, see? We’re gonna be fine.”
Sakusa twists the arm that Atsumu has a hold on, until their palms meet. For someone whose hands were usually naturally warm, Sakusa’s hands right now were abnormally cold and sweaty.
He’s squeezing his hand a little too hard, so Atsumu squeezes back to make sure his own doesn’t end up breaking from the pressure. He rubs the back of Sakusa’s hand with his thumb, back and forth, back and forth.
That seems to help ‘cause he starts trying to breathe in tandem with his strokes, the grip on his hand gradually loosening into something still tight, but less painful.
All the while that the plane lifts off, Atsumu is whispering things that he hopes are calming, and he’s not exactly sure what he’s saying but Sakusa seems to be holding onto every word so he keeps doing it.
You’re okay, Omi. We’re good. We’re alright. I’m right here.
After a little while, his breathing goes back to normal, his head bobbing to the side in exhaustion until it rests against Atsumu’s shoulder.
“Atsumu…” Sakusa mumbles, turning to his side, and snuggling his face into Atsumu’s neck.
He doesn’t seem to be in his right mind. Atsumu really is not allowed to be enjoying this as much as he is.
He closes his eyes, bites his tongue, and tries to convince himself that this was not happening and he wasn’t feeling anything. He was not feeling warm, he was not feeling giddy, and he was simply being a good co-worker and friend by helping him out during a scary moment in his life. That’s all.
“I…” Sakusa murmurs breathily into his skin, “... fucking hate you.”
Atsumu’s eye twitches. How on brand of him.
He sneakily tries to wriggle his hand out of Sakusa’s firm grip, but the boy whimpers in his half asleep state, burying his face deeper into Atsumu’s neck.
I am going to cry, Atsumu thinks as he clenches his fists, he is so cute and I am going to start crying on this plane if nobody rips him away from me right now.
But he also realizes that Sakusa had just been completely and utterly terrified. And in that moment during the peak of his fear and vulnerability, the only one he could hold onto was Atsumu.
He finds himself feeling almost… honored to be in the place that he was.
So instead of trying to run from the situation, he makes himself more comfortable in his seat, and decides to join him in taking a nap for the next three hours.
As he closes his eyes and rests his head on top of Sakusa’s, he wonders if holding his fuck buddy’s hand while they slept counted as getting attached.
And then, he makes a conscious decision not to think about that.
“Did you get that on camera?” Suna asks Kageyama, who’d been seated directly across them.
The boy nods. “I have a few pictures and a short clip of Atsumu looking like he wants to explode.”
“Nice.” Suna says, patting him roughly on the shoulder, before turning to Kiyoko. “I can’t believe you just let that happen when your kid almost had a meltdown.”
She shakes her head, looking relieved that everything turned out okay. “I didn’t make him do anything. He’s the one who said he wanted to sit next to Atsumu-kun.”
Suna raises his eyebrows, unable to hide his surprise. “Why?”
“His excuse was…” Kiyoko smiles lightly, “... that maybe if he sat next to someone annoying, he’d be so annoyed that he wouldn’t have the time to feel scared.”
Suna bites back an amused laugh, as he turns to the two unconscious actors, heads pressed together, hands intertwined on top of Atsumu’s lap.
“Is that what being annoyed looks like these days?”
Kageyama posts the sleeping picture on his Instagram with the caption ‘On our way to Okinawa to make history’.
#SAKUATSU is trending #1 on Twitter by the time they land.
Sakusa buries his face into the mattress to muffle his moans, fingers clenched tightly around the sheets, as Atsumu fucks him from behind.
“Fuck, Omi,” Atsumu groans, grabbing his ass cheeks and squeezing them in his hands, pulling them apart, “Wanted to eat ya up ever since I fuckin’ saw you this morning.”
“Shit,” Sakusa grits out, spreading his legs wider, arching his back for a better angle, “Touch me. I’m so close.”
Atsumu reaches down between Sakusa’s legs and starts pulling on his cock.
Sakusa’s arms give out at that, making him drop down to his elbows. “Yeah, like that.”
“You always make me come so fast,” Atsumu says breathlessly, pounding into him as he keeps stroking, “Always so fuckin’ sexy for me, baby.”
“Close, close, close,” Sakusa chants, “Atsumu, I’m gonna—”
Atsumu manages to catch most of Sakusa’s come in his hand, to show some consideration and respect for whoever’s gonna end up cleaning their hotel rooms.
It doesn’t take long for him after that. After a few more shallow thrusts, he grunts and shivers as he comes into the condom, pulsing so hard inside Sakusa that he thinks the man might feel it in his gut.
They’re both still panting, trying to recover, Sakusa’s face buried in the sheets and Atsumu’s forehead resting on the small of his back, when they hear a knock on the door.
“Are you two in there together?” Kiyoko calls out, “Because we have to go and get ready now!”
“Was that enough to sate ya for today?” Atsumu asks, pressing a wet kiss to Sakusa’s spine.
The man only reaches back to smack him on the arm weakly. “Get off. We have to take a shower.”
Atsumu groans, pushing himself off, before trying to shimmy back into his sweatpants, throwing the used condom, and looking for something to clean his hands with in the process. Sakusa turns so he’s lying on his back, as he similarly tries to drag his underwear and jeans back up.
It’s in the middle of their lazy after-sex routine that Suna suddenly yells, “You guys better be clothed!” and without any further warning, pushes the door open.
Fuck managers and their extra card keys.
He walks right into the sight of half of Atsumu’s ass sticking out and Sakusa in the midst of pulling his zipper up.
Suna blinks, disappointed but not surprised, while Kiyoko yelps from behind him, instantly covering her eyes.
“Fuck.” Sakusa sighs miserably, “Thought we’d manage to hide this from them just a little longer.”
“They’re having sex?” Kiyoko whisper screeches.
“Where have you been?” Suna throws back at her.
“Is this supposed to be new information?” Kageyama asks, walking past the door eating a popsicle, “I thought they’d been doing it ever since the first chemistry read.”
“Okay, enough fuckin’ gawking here.” Atsumu waves them all off, grabbing Sakusa’s outstretched hand, and pulling him up to his feet. “We’re fucking, yeah, now we all know. We’re doing it ‘cause it helps us perform better, alright?”
“And I’d appreciate it if you guys didn’t tell anyone else.” Sakusa adds, scratching the back of his neck. “I just don’t want the public to find out that I actually don’t mind touching this guy.”
“Hey.” Atsumu gripes, “I’m pretty sure ya more than just don’t mind me, if yer sex noises are anythin’ to go by.”
Kiyoko makes a distressed noise again, waving her hands in front of her. “I don’t wanna hear anything else! Just, please get decent so we can go.”
“Aye-aye, Captain!” Atsumu says, saluting playfully. “Come on, Omi. Let’s make today count!”
“Gross.” is all Sakusa says to the movie title reference, as he prepares to shower and change in his own room, but Atsumu can tell he’s biting back a smile.
Atsumu fights the urge to fist pump. It’s another win for him today.
“Did something happen with them?” Ukai asks Kiyoko and Suna, motioning to the two lead actors, sitting side by side, the tops of their heads pressed together, as they discuss their next scene.
Thankfully, the weather in Okinawa is perfect for shooting a movie set mostly on a beach. The sun is warm, but the air isn’t humid. And so Sakusa Kiyoomi, known for his complaints about… everything, hasn’t complained about a single thing so far, other than the amount of bugs. And Miya Atsumu, known for his lack of professionalism and punctuality, has been nothing but professional and punctual the past two weeks.
“Nothing at all.” Kiyoko says, shaking her head, smiling in a way that she probably hoped looked convincing, but only managed to look unnatural. “Absolutely nothing. They’ve just managed to build a very good friendship.”
“... Right, okay.” Ukai narrows his eyes, obviously unconvinced, but decides not to push the topic, “Atsumu-kun! Sakusa-kun! Are you two ready for the next scene?”
“Yeah,” Atsumu says, snapping his head up, “Just one question, though. When Takeru and Rui tackle each other to the sand and everythin’ and we freeze and look at each other, is it like a romantic freeze or a horny freeze?”
Ukai furrows his brows. “Hmm… what feels more right for the two of you?”
Atsumu turns to look at Sakusa the same time that Sakusa turns to look at him.
They nod in unison and say, “Both.”
With that, they stand and make their way to their marked positions, hair and makeup staff rushing after them to keep them in perfect condition. Everyone stares.
Ukai turns to their two managers.
“They’re seeing each other, aren’t they?”
Suna shrugs, like he doesn’t know anything. “I don’t know what you’re talking about.”
He turns to Kiyoko, who also makes a clueless face, and then to Kageyama who simply looks away, turning his attention back to his script.
A few minutes later, after Ukai yells ‘Action!’ gone are Miya Atsumu and Sakusa Kiyoomi, replaced completely by the childhood best friends, Takeru and Rui.
“Say, Rui,” Atsumu says, kicking the sand beneath his feet as they walk side by side, “Remember when we were kids and we had those family beach trips every summer?”
Sakusa smiles. “How could I forget? My personal favorite is the year you fell off the canoe and hit your head against the paddle trying to get back up.”
“Hey, screw you,” Atsumu shoves him with his elbow playfully, “That was your fault.”
“Oh, it was my fault that you kept trying to stand up?” Sakusa teases, shoving him back.
“It was your fault, because you were the one egging me on to do it!” Atsumu says, finally shoving him as hard as he can, pushing them both to the ground.
“Hey, stop that!” Sakusa yells, rolling over so he has Atsumu pinned to the sand, as he starts tickling his sides.
And he’s in character, he swears he is, but the laugh that Atsumu lets out is a real one. The wide smile on his face is real and for a split second, just for that short while, Sakusa thinks that there’s nothing he wouldn’t do to stay locked in that moment, for just a little while longer.
The thought disappears as quickly as it came, as Atsumu growls and pushes Sakusa off him, throwing a leg over him, pinning down both his arms with a strong grip on his wrists, their faces so close that Sakusa could kiss him if he raised his head just a little bit more.
This position… felt way too close to certain real life situations they’ve been in together.
Sakusa feels the telltale twitch of his cock against Atsumu’s. They both gulp, staring at each other dead in the eye.
“Okay, cut!” Ukai says, “That was good! Let’s do another take from a different angle!”
Atsumu hurriedly pushes himself off, turning around, and patting the sand off his clothes. “Good?”
Sakusa exhales, willing his dick to calm the fuck down and wait for work to be over. “Yeah.”
Ukai, once again, turns to the managers, speaking purely with his eyes.
Suna yawns, casually fanning himself with a spare script. “I dunno what to tell you. I don’t know anything.”
The shoot lasts late into the night, so by the time the hotel room door closes behind them, they’re past the point of desperation.
Sakusa throws his arms around Atsumu’s neck and wraps his legs around his waist. “Right here.”
“What?” Atsumu asks, pressing Sakusa against the door to ease off some of his weight, “What do ya mean right here?”
“I want you to rail me against the fucking door.” Sakusa clarifies, already using one hand to pull his swimming trunks down, so that his already hard cock peeks out. “Fast. Hard. Now.”
“Oh, Omi,” Atsumu damn near moans, burying his face in Sakusa’s neck to ravage him as much as he can without leaving lasting marks, as he pulls his own trunks down to his ankles, “Yer gonna be the fuckin’ death of me.”
The next morning, they’re back to business as usual. There’s a few suspicious bruises on Sakusa’s neck that they have to cover up with makeup, and fairly light but still slightly obvious long scratch marks along Atsumu’s back that they also have to cover up with makeup, but other than that, nothing out of the ordinary.
No one asks questions and it becomes yet another open secret.
Everyone on the set knew that Miya Atsumu and Sakusa Kiyoomi were gay and that they were fucking. Atsumu and Sakusa also knew that they all knew. But nobody says a word, because stranger things have happened in showbiz, and if the sex was the reason that filming had been going better, quicker, and smoother than anyone had ever expected it to, well then, who were they to complain?
And it becomes a routine. Wake up, fuck, shower, film, fuck, eat, film, fuck, film some more, eat some more, fuck some more, shower, sometimes together, sleep, but never together, repeat.
It’s a routine that works. Better than the routines Atsumu had in the past to keep himself sane, at least. And it’s a routine that keeps their onscreen chemistry burning and their relationship as co-workers civil.
So in a state of desperation to keep that routine, Atsumu tries to ignore the growing feeling in his chest, the feeling like vines trying to wrap themselves around his heart, like venom in his veins, that are causing him to hyperfocus on Sakusa’s contented smile whenever he takes his first sip of iced tea or watermelon shake in the mornings, how unruly his already curly hair gets whenever it gets wet with ocean water, how his nose scrunches up cutely when he complains about the way he can never get the damn sand out of his clothes, and the way he says his name when he’s seconds away from an orgasm, clutching onto any part of Atsumu he can reach, like he’s never wanted to hold onto anyone more.
He ignores it because the last time he’d gotten this addicted to something, the last time he’d allowed himself to get drunk on it, it had ruined him.
He wasn’t going to ruin himself again.
And he wasn’t going to let himself ruin Sakusa Kiyoomi, either.
“Atsumu,” Suna says, squeezing his shoulder as they’re being driven to their next location, “You’re sure about what you guys are doing?”
“Yeah,” Atsumu says, flashing him a practiced smile that he knows looks genuine, “I told ya not to worry too much about me, Sunarin.”
“It’s my actual job to worry about you.” Suna counters, “I’m your manager and your best friend. So, double whammy.”
Atsumu’s heart squeezes a little bit at that, so he leans down to rest his head on his shoulder. “I’ll be fine. I have you around, don’t I?”
Suna pauses. “Just don’t get too attached, alright? I don’t want to see you get into another mess when I just got you back.”
“I won’t.” Atsumu says. “I can handle myself. I promise.”
Sometimes, Atsumu truly asks himself, how many times he’s going to have to say that out loud until he’s successfully convinced himself of it, too.
Atsumu ends up bent over in half, hands clutching onto the boat’s railings so tightly that his knuckles are turning white.
He seemed to have picked up on Sakusa’s breathing exercises on the plane just a few weeks back, counting his breaths.
Sakusa has a hand over the man’s back, rubbing it comfortingly. “Idiot.”
“Be nice to me, ya dick.” Atsumu manages to get out, even after he’d just puked his guts out over the edge of the railings, “Think about how kind I was treatin’ ya on the plane on the way here. And now yer callin’ me names?”
The boat dips at a particularly big wave and Atsumu’s stomach lurches again. He groans loudly, closing his eyes, trying to go to his happy place.
“Well,” Sakusa sighs, “At least, you managed to hold out until after we finished filming the scene.”
“Thanks for acknowledging my fuckin’ level of professionalism.” Atsumu spits out, “But that’s not helping.”
“Didn’t you take any motion sickness pills?” Sakusa scolds lightly, “You knew we were gonna film on a boat today.”
“Well, they didn’t fuckin’ work now, did they?” Atsumu says bitterly, “Fuck. How much longer ‘til we get back, Rin?”
“Just a few more minutes.” Suna says, sitting with his legs crossed and sunglasses perched on his face, like it’s just the same shit as always, “Why don’t you come here and lay down or something?”
Atsumu responds to that by bending over and throwing up into the ocean for a second time. Sakusa winces, inching away from him, but continues rubbing his back as moral support. Not much comes out of him as compared to the first time, though, which Sakusa guesses is a good thing.
Atsumu spits one last time before groaning loudly, crouching down and resting his forehead against the railings.
Sakusa presses a cold bottle of water to the boy’s cheek. “Drink.”
“Yer a saint.” Atsumu mumbles with his eyes closed, taking the bottle and gulping it down.
“Slowly, you idiot.” Sakusa chides, reaching out to push his hand down, “If you don’t wanna get sick again.”
Atsumu sniffs miserably once he’s done drinking, reaching a hand out for Sakusa to hold, “Carry me.”
“Atsumu, the seats are right there.” He points out.
“After I comforted you, held your hand, calmed you down,” Atsumu whines, “... after how good I ate you out this morning—”
Sakusa takes the boy’s hand and lifts him into a fireman's carry.
“NOT LIKE THIS!” Atsumu complains, punching Sakusa’s back, weakly. “I hate you! Can’t ya romance me, just a little?!”
Sakusa drops him down onto the bench and once everything is right side up again, Atsumu’s face screws up, as he holds onto the edge of the seat to ground himself.
Sakusa feels sorry but is also kind of entertained, never having seen the man look so weak.
He reaches for his temporarily abandoned glass of wine on the nearby table and takes a sip as he cheekily asks, “Care for a drink?”
“Don’t offer him that.” Suna complains.
Atsumu only glowers at Sakusa, venomously.
“Fuck you,” He burps weakly, “I feel fuckin’ sick, you asshole.”
His miserable form makes Sakusa feel a little bad, so he sighs and plops down next to the boy.
“Alright, I’m sorry.” He placates when Atsumu shoots him a betrayed glare, motioning to his thighs, “See? I’ll let you borrow my lap, even if you’re absolutely fucking disgusting right now.”
That seems to be more than enough to make the simpleton happy, because he almost instantly falls to his side with a contented hum, making himself comfortable, as he buries his face in Sakusa’s shirt as if they’ve done this a thousand times before.
“Mmmm,” Atsumu hums, “Yer always s’good to me, Omi-Omi.”
Sakusa scoffs at the quick change in attitude. “Yeah, yeah.”
After just a few seconds of hair petting, he’s pretty sure Atsumu is already completely knocked out.
He takes the opportunity to examine the boy’s face. It wasn’t all the time that he got to be in Atsumu’s presence when he wasn’t being a pain in the ass… in more ways than one.
He was admittedly… pretty. He was mostly sharp, but soft in all the right places. His eyelashes are unfairly long and his skin is ridiculously smooth for someone who probably only ever used body wash for his face. When he laughed, it was radiant, so bright that it lit up a room. And when he’s like this, peaceful and quiet, Sakusa liked it the most.
It’s almost dumbfounding how someone could be so effortlessly beautiful. So annoyingly gorgeous when they weren’t even awake to know.
“You like him, huh.” A low voice says from behind him and he whips his head around to see Kageyama, nursing his own glass of wine. “Reminds me of when Hinata got carsick and I had to go through the same thing.”
“Oh shit, he went there.” Suna comments quietly to himself while Kiyoko pointedly turns her attention elsewhere.
Sakusa hadn’t filmed too many scenes with Kageyama since Atsumu was the one he was always filming with, so they weren’t exactly what you’d call close, but he was comfortable with him to an extent.
Not comfortable enough for this conversation, though. So, Sakusa only turns back around.
“I’m just paying back a favor.” He answers simply.
“I don’t…” He starts to say, but chokes on his own words as Atsumu moves in his sleep, tilting his head towards Sakusa’s hand, snuggling into his palm with a soft noise. He gulps, “... like him.”
Fuck, that was cute.
Sometimes, Sakusa wished that there was an instruction manual on How To Successfully Be Co-Stars with Benefits. Because these days, he’s been wondering how many times he needs to tell himself he doesn’t like him for it to be true and to remain true.
He looks down at his lap, running his thumb softly over the unconscious boy’s cheekbone.
Because for some reason, these days he feels like the more he says it, the further it gets from being the truth.
They only have a week left in Okinawa, the first time that Atsumu pops him the question.
“Hey, Omi,” He says without looking at him, as they fix up their things after a particularly tiring day of filming, “Wanna have dinner with me?”
Sakusa freezes. Dinner?
That… would be the first time that they’d ever actually be spending time together outside filming, that wasn’t either them rehearsing their lines or having rough, animalistic sex.
In hindsight, he knows that the automatic answer should be no. They signed a contract. They’re in this only for the movie and for the sex. There was no getting dinner together involved in their arrangement. No getting attached. So, Sakusa should say no. He was going to say no.
It’s definitely a no.
But when he looks up and sees Atsumu’s eyes, all he can see in them… is this delicate expression of hope. It made him look both excited and frightened at the same time and there was something so raw about it that somehow, when Sakusa opens his mouth, what comes out instead of ‘no’ is;
“Where are we eating?”
The smile that Atsumu gives him is ethereal and Sakusa decides that maybe bending the rules of their contract just this once wouldn’t be so bad.
They end up in a hole in the wall restaurant not too far away from where they’d been filming. When Atsumu had looked at the rest of the crew and told them, ‘Hey, Omi and I are gonna go have dinner, just the two of us’ no one had even blinked. He thinks he’d even heard Omi’s manager, Kiyoko go, ‘Damn, finally.’
Atsumu doesn’t know what the fuck that was supposed to mean.
Sakusa scans the barren place, as if trying to make sure it’s clean and safe. Atsumu fights the urge to roll his eyes.
“Okay, Mr. Fancy Pants, I get it, you’ve never eaten dinner out anywhere that didn’t cost a whole kidney and a lung.”
Sakusa makes a face, as he pulls out a chair. “What? How much money do you think I have?”
Atsumu raises his eyebrows as he does the same, “So, you’re not from a rich family then?”
“God, the media always exaggerates everything.” Sakusa sighs, “We were well-off, but it’s not like we lived in a fucking mansion. We had a nice car, I guess. If anything, aren’t you supposed to be the rich kid, Mr. Child Star?”
A waiter approaches their table with menus in hand and they can tell from the starstruck look on his face that he recognized the both of them, but much to their appreciation, he treats them like he would any other customer.
“Well, we weren’t exactly making a fortune off fuckin’ milk commercials and two minute guest appearances on TV shows with shitty ratings, Omi-kun. And we were flat broke to begin with.” Atsumu retorts, “And I’ll just get some Tonkotsu with some Coke, please. Thank you.” He says, facing the waiter with a smile.
“Yeah, yeah, then you and your brother hit the jackpot with The Parent Prank. ” Sakusa says, “I know, I’ve watched all the interviews. And Miso Ramen for me, please.”
The waiter bows at them nervously before shuffling away.
Atsumu smirks. “So… you’ve watched my interviews, huh?”
Sakusa freezes for half a second, before composing himself with an awkward cough.
“Whatever. Screw you. I was an aspiring young actor doing research on other famous actors. I was being professional and learning from you.”
“Being professional would be watchin’ my movies, what did my stupid interviews have to do with anything?” Atsumu teases. “Plus, I was hungover half the fuckin’ time. I don’t think ya could’ve gotten anythin’ of substance from any of ‘em.”
“Oh, I could tell.” Sakusa says knowingly, taking a sip of his water. “I could really tell.”
Atsumu chuckles lightly. “But hey, that ain’t fair. Ya know all about the backstory of how I got into acting, but I dunno jackshit about you. You’ve barely even done any interviews.”
Sakusa raises his eyebrows. “What does my backstory have to do with you?”
Atsumu pouts indignantly. “I know how ya sound when you come in so many different variations, depending on whether I’m usin’ my mouth, hands, or cock ‘n yet I don’t even know what yer mother does for a living.”
Sakusa’s eyes widen, leaning forward. “Atsumu, what the fuck, shut up, we’re in public!”
“Loosen up, ya damn square, we’re the only customers here.” He waves his hand to lazily motion around the place, “If ya really want me to shut up, then humor me and just tell me about yer life.”
Sakusa huffs, settling into his seat with his arms crossed, like a child being told to do something he doesn’t want to.
“... My mom wanted to be an actress when she was young.”
Atsumu perks up with interest, leaning in. “And?”
“It didn’t work out. It was a pipe dream, she said. She ended up becoming an elementary school teacher. But she was in charge of the drama club there.” Sakusa explains, a warm smile making its way to his face unconsciously.
Atsumu’s heart softens at the sight. “So, it was yer dream ‘cause it was yer mom’s dream, huh?”
“Something like that.” Sakusa says at the same time that two bowls of ramen are placed in front of them. “That and because I watched Titanic and kept thinking that I wanted to be Leonardo Dicaprio.”
Atsumu follows the waiter with his eyes as he walks away and once he’s out of sight, asks, “You wanted to be him or do him?”
Sakusa shrugs. “Both.”
Their eyes meet and slowly their lips curl, until they burst out laughing in unison.
“Fuck you.” Sakusa chuckles, reaching for his chopsticks. “Let’s just eat.”
Atsumu realizes that there’s probably nothing in the world he wouldn’t do to keep making Sakusa Kiyoomi smile at him like that.
“So ya told me ‘bout yer mom… how ‘bout yer dad?”
Sakusa hums into his noodles, chewing a bit before talking. “He was a failed actor. He didn’t want me to go down the same path… said it ruined his life and he didn’t want me to ruin mine. I did it anyway. I’m glad I did and so is he.”
Atsumu hums in acknowledgement, digging into his own ramen.
“Ruined his life?” He asks, curiously.
Sakusa lowers his gaze to his bowl. “He’s a recovering addict.”
“He’s been clean for over five years now.” Sakusa adds quickly, “He’s made some mistakes that I’m still trying to forgive him for, but he’s been making up for them.”
Atsumu smiles gently but doesn’t look up from his food. “Good man.”
“He does his best.” Sakusa says. Eager to change the topic, he adds, “What about you?”
Atsumu makes a questioning noise. “What about me? Haven’t ya watched all my interviews?”
Sakusa shoots him a dirty look. “Will you fucking let that go?”
“Never.” He winks, “I’m holdin’ it over yer head for the rest of yer life, Omi-Omi.”
Sakusa sighs tiredly, but decides to let it slide.
“I mean, tell me something you haven’t talked about in any of those interviews.” He says, “I want something coming from an older, wiser, less hungover Miya Atsumu.”
“Hmmm,” Atsumu croons, “So yer lookin’ for a fresh scoop on me? Ya gonna rat me out, Omi-kun?”
“I told you things about me that the public doesn’t know.” Sakusa replies easily. “So, it’s a fair trade.”
Atsumu narrows his eyes at him playfully, examining him, but Sakusa only regards him with a tilted brow.
Atsumu shrugs, going back to his meal.
“Okay. Then…” He says, mixing his soup, “Sunarin actually only started officially bein’ my manager this year. Before that, he was just my childhood best friend slash my brother’s boyfriend. I hired him ‘cause my last manager was an asshole who didn’t actually give a shit about me.”
“What does that mean?” Sakusa asks, “What’d he do?”
“You saw me.” Atsumu huffs out a laugh that sounded anything but humorous, “The whole damn world saw me. I was a teenager goin’ off the rails and what was he doin’ about it? Absolutely fuckin’ nothing. Nothing other than sellin’ out information about me for money, anyway.”
Christ. It isn’t the first time he’s heard something like that happen, but still.
Sakusa bites the inside of his lip, wanting to ask something, but not knowing whether it’s the right time or place. Or if it was something Atsumu would ever want to answer, in the first place. But he does, anyway.
“Why did you go off the rails?”
Sakusa had always wondered that. He knew full well how difficult it was to live in the spotlight. The past five years for him had been amazing, almost dream-like… but overwhelming all the same. He never really wondered why so many child celebrities ended up the way they did. It’s hard enough being a kid, figuring yourself out, growing up, and making mistakes along the way. What exactly do you do when the entire world is watching you do it? What do you do when everyone is telling you what to do and who to be, when you haven’t even grown enough to know who you really are?
Sakusa wasn’t one to lurk on social media or religiously read articles and watch videos on celebrity gossip, but he has heard all the theories. There were a lot of them. Some saying it was a bad breakup, some saying it was family issues, some saying it was just friends being bad influences, but most of them were centered around the fact that Miya Atsumu started going down the wrong path after his more responsible twin brother decided to leave showbiz, leaving him behind to get all the spotlight and shoulder all the pressure of being the breadwinner of the family.
“Well,” Atsumu says, visibly gulping nervously, avoiding eye contact, “To be fair to me… while some of the rumors about me weren’t too far off from the truth, a lot of them weren’t true at all either.”
“I never cheated on those girls from Scream. Hell, I never did anythin’ with either of ‘em.” Atsumu says exasperatedly, “I dunno where the hell those rumors came from and why the fuck I just kept gettin’ linked with all these actresses I’d never even spoken more than two words to, and it sucked ‘cause everyone believed ‘em no matter what I said.”
Sakusa feels a twinge of guilt for buying into all of it, too.
“But I guess I couldn’t blame ‘em. I had a reputation and that reputation was my own fault.” Atsumu continues, “I… well, I was goin’ through a rough patch, that’s all. And I made some mistakes because of it.”
He looks up at Sakusa and smiles weakly.
“There’s somethin’ I never said in any of those interviews.” He says softly, “That I was goin’ off the rails… because I was just havin a really fuckin’ hard time. And I didn’t know what to do.”
Sakusa recognizes when Atsumu starts acting, because his face doesn’t change at all, but his hands are trembling in a way that looked like he couldn’t help it even if he tried.
He doesn’t really think before he does it, his body working faster than his mind when he reaches out to lay a hand on top of Atsumu’s. The man instantly turns it so it’s palm up, taking Sakusa’s hand in his and squeezing, taking a deep breath.
A silent thank you, I appreciate it.
Sakusa can recognize when someone had gone through something they’d rather not talk about.
“Wanna keep eating?” Sakusa asks quietly, after a few moments of comforting silence to give Atsumu time to pull himself back together.
Atsumu recognizes it as the man giving him an out of this conversation, so he takes it with a nod.
“Yeah. The food here is good, isn’t it, Omi-kun?”
Once Sakusa’s sure he’s okay, he gently pulls away, naturally going back to his normal demeanor. “I guess your taste in restaurants isn’t so bad.”
Atsumu bites back a smile as they continue eating their meals.
The walk back to their hotel is relatively quiet, both comfortable and tense at the same time. Because they’d come to realize that what they’d just done doesn’t exactly fall into their strange arrangement . Did co-workers who have casual sex also have late night dinners like this? Did they not?
What exactly were they supposed to do with the answer?
It’s only by the time they’re in front of the doors to their rooms, standing side by side, that they realize that they hadn’t even had sex at all the entire day.
There’s a silent question hanging in the air, wondering which option was worse.
To have sex even after all that, just to keep from breaking the routine more than they already have, or to not have sex after all that, because if they did then it’d feel way too personal for co-stars with benefits.
They pause and then Sakusa motions to the other with his hand.
“You go first, then.”
“Uh,” Atsumu hesitates, a hand flying up to rub the back of his neck awkwardly, “Do ya wanna maybe… end the night with a bang?”
Sakusa holds his breath. “Meaning?”
“We don’t have to have sex.” Atsumu says, voice low in case anyone was out in the hallways, “I kinda just really wanna eat you out.”
Sakusa feels a heat start to build in his groin at an impressive speed.
“Fuck you,” He sighs exasperatedly, yanking Atsumu away from his door by the front of his shirt and pulling him towards his own room, “How the fuck am I supposed to say no to that?”
Ten minutes later has Sakusa splayed naked on his back, holding his own thighs open by the back of his knees, as Atsumu fucks him with his tongue until he’s a garbling, incoherent mess.
“That feels s’good, shit” Sakusa slurs, pressing into Atsumu’s mouth deeper, toes curling as the man stiffens his tongue inside him, “Fuck, Atsumu, god , lick my ass.”
Atsumu loved it.
He loved how he could turn Sakusa Kiyoomi from this competent, kind of frigid, always put together actor to this babbling, sweaty, trembling mess put on display for him right now.
He fucks, licks, and slurps, drowning himself in every curve, every noise, every little detail of him, as the man moans and shakes, fingers tightening impossibly in Atsumu’s hair.
“Shit,” He gasps urgently, “Atsumu… fuck, don’t stop, I’m gonna come.”
Only he gets to see this. Only he gets to see him fall apart like this. Only he can make him fall apart like this. Only he can see him be so goddamn bare, beautiful, and filthy.
“Fuck—” Sakusa’s cock twitches as he comes completely untouched, his mouth open into a silent scream, one hand clenched tightly around his leg, digging into his own skin, and the other buried in Atsumu’s hair, pushing his face deeper into his ass, Atsumu feeling his pretty little hole flutter against his tongue.
Once he’s done trembling and Atsumu’s cleaned them both up, Sakusa smiles at the ceiling, closing his eyes, looking mollified.
Atsumu lies next to him, close enough for their arms to touch. It’s warm.
“Fuck. Thanks. I needed that.” Sakusa exhales, turning his head tiredly to look at the man beside him. “What do you want? Do you want me to suck you off?”
He’s glowing, Atsumu notices. Sakusa always glowed after a really good orgasm and his skin would be flushed into this gorgeous color, but it was different tonight. Maybe the ramen was just that good, or maybe it’s because he’d smiled a lot more today with him, more than he ever has.
He was just... radiant.
Atsumu realizes something at that moment. Something that scares him down to his bones and he can only hope that the smile that he gives him doesn’t look as fragile as it feels when he says, “I’m alright. I’m kinda tired tonight.”
“Oh.” Sakusa looks suspicious, but doesn’t push it. “Okay. If you’re sure.”
And Atsumu knows he rushes more than he usually does out the door, but he doesn’t know what else to do. Because he knows exactly what he wanted at that moment, and it didn’t have anything to do with orgasms.
He just wanted to stay. He just wanted to hold him until they fell asleep in each other’s arms. He just wanted to make him smile more. He just wanted to make him laugh.
And in that moment, more than anything else, Atsumu thinks as he walks into the darkness of his own room and collapses into his cold, empty bed, he just really fucking wanted to kiss him.
The next morning, they find out there’s an article out about them, along with a few pictures of them eating together in a hole in the wall restaurant in Okinawa taken from a distance, titled ‘SAME AGED STARS MIYA ATSUMU AND SAKUSA KIYOOMI, SEEN DINING OUT TOGETHER IN OKINAWA IN THE MIDST OF FILMING ‘MAKE IT COUNT.’’
Sakusa scans the article and doesn’t see anything out of the ordinary. There’s a mention of Atsumu’s disappearance and linking Sakusa to it, wondering what role he could’ve played in bringing him back from the dead, but he doesn’t even want to get into how stupid that was.
“See, if one of us was a girl, it would be an instant dating rumor.” Atsumu points out, “The double standard of it all.”
Sakusa blinks at the iPad screen. “This is a good thing, though, right?”
“Sure.” Ukai says, shrugging. “It’s good publicity.”
Sakusa keeps staring at the pictures, at the bright smiles on both their faces and at the glimmer in his own eyes that he doesn’t recognize. He’s glad that they hadn’t caught them holding hands, but still.
It was there and it was visible.
That comfort and warmth that he knew was there but wouldn’t let himself acknowledge.
If one of them was a girl, it would be an instant dating rumor, Atsumu had said, and he was right.
Because it didn’t matter how Sakusa looked at it, it didn’t matter how much he thought about their dumb contract, and their sex for professional reasons only arrangement. It was a date.
Last night, they’d gone on a fucking date.
Chapter 2: Act II
Warning: The last part is a flashback scene of the aftermath of an accidental alcohol/drug overdose. Nothing graphic, though. And without going into any specifics and mainly focuses on the feelings of his loved ones. But if that still makes you uncomfortable, just don't read the last italicized portion of this chapter!
So, it’s awkward. It’s a mess. They hadn’t slept together at all in six days. It’s weird and it’s everything they both promised it wouldn’t be, and honestly, they’re just glad that there’s only one more scene left to shoot. They’d managed to hold it together the past week, no one even noticing that anything was off, probably thanks in big part to the fact that most of the scenes they’d had to film weren’t with each other.
But they survived and that’s what matters.
The problem was that the only scene left for them to shoot was the climax. A dramatic late night fight by the sea that leads to a passionate, semi-public sex scene. The same scene that they’d done for their first chemistry read, that’s now been changed, fixed, and tweaked to perfection.
So, that was convenient.
“Kiyoomi-kun?” Kiyoko asks, concerned at the man’s stiff posture as the hair and makeup crew work on him, “Are you… doing okay?”
“Yeah. I’m fine.” Sakusa answers, trying his best to make his facial expression match his words, “Why?”
“Because you’re reading your book upside down.” She points out.
He looks down at his lap. “Oh.”
She sighs, taking it out of his hands, and closing it with a snap. “Is this related to Atsumu-kun?”
He blinks rapidly, turning away from her, because he knows if he looks at her for any longer, she’ll be able to read him because she’s terrifying like that.
“I don’t know what he has to do with anything.”
She purses her lips, as if evaluating her words, before going, “Suna-kun says he hasn’t heard you guys have sex through the wall in days.”
“Oh my god.”
“It’s normal.” Kiyoko tries to comfort, “We’ve all heard you. You two are kinda loud, sometimes. It’s okay.”
“How the fuck is that okay?” He exclaims, humiliated. He thinks he even hears his hair stylist snicker.
“Did you fight again?” Kiyoko asks, ignoring his mental breakdown. “Because he’s been acting kind of off too, according to Suna-kun.”
Sakusa genuinely thought they’d been hiding it better. But he guesses neither of them could hide much from two of the people who knew them best.
“We didn’t fight. It’s nothing like that.” Sakusa says, because it’s true.
“It’s nothing like that implies that there is something wrong, though.” She points out. “So, what is it? Because I don’t want you two to be at each other’s throats on our last day. And during the filming of the most important scene, too.”
There are many things that Sakusa is worried about right now, but him and Atsumu fucking up this scene wasn’t one of them. Because he knows that he wasn’t going to fuck up. He wouldn’t allow himself to do that. And after two months of knowing him, working with him, and seeing him work, Sakusa realizes that this is the first time he’s working with someone (other than Jun Matsumoto), who he trusts isn’t going to fuck things up, either.
“We’ll be fine.” Sakusa says. “We’re going to finish this movie and we’re going to do it well.”
The words come out of him so easily, only because he truly believes it.
He trusts Atsumu completely. He trusts him and realizes that he means it in more ways than one.
He trusts him in a way that he’s only ever trusted one other man before. And that right there was the problem.
The rain starts pouring down heavily the second they finish setting everything up to film their last take.
“For crying out loud,” Ukai groans hopelessly, staring up at the traitorous sky as the rest of the crew scramble to put on rain gear, “Are you kidding me?”
Sakusa stands like a damn sim, miserable and dripping wet from head to toe. “What was the point of all that hair and makeup then?”
Everyone seems to be in a panic, save for Atsumu who’s casually lounging on his artist’s chair, pushing his wet hair back.
“I don’t see the issue. Wouldn’t rain match the vibes of the scene perfectly? It would fit all the dramatic cryin’ and yellin’.”
“And the sex?” Sakusa adds, pointedly.
“It’s the emotional sex on top of wet sand for me.” Suna comments, in the middle of trying to help move chairs under the tent. “Think about them grinding and making out and Rui having to pull away ‘cause he got fucking raindrops in his eyes and Takeru’s got sand stuck in his buttcheeks.”
“You’re making it worse.” Kiyoko scolds, smacking him on the arm.
“No, wait, he’s right.” Ukai says, raising a hand up. “Wait… yeah, Atsumu’s absolutely right.”
“See?” Atsumu shrugs, standing up with a huff. “I know what I’m talkin’ about, I’ve been in this business for twenty years. It’s all about the experience, baby.”
“What.” Sakusa deadpans.
“It’s actually perfect.” Ukai says, eyes wide like he just had an epiphany. He turns to the two actors, “Are you two willing to film the whole thing under the rain?”
“Sure.” Atsumu says, casually. “At least we’re not shootin’ in a heat wave.”
Sakusa tries to visualize the whole scene in his head the way that he has a hundred times before, but this time under the rain, and he hates to admit it but it’s better. It’s perfect .
“Fine.” He spits out, taking the edge of his shirt to twist all the water out, “But let’s make this quick.”
He looks up and meets Atsumu’s eyes and… he just smiles at him, and it’s the first time he’s smiled at him in days.
Sakusa’s traitorous heart skips a beat.
“It’s our final goodbye, Omi-Omi.” He says, quiet enough for only him to hear, “Let’s make it count.”
If Sakusa already feels like bursting into tears, he blames it on being Rui.
Lights. Camera. Action.
The wind is biting cold. Their wet clothes stick to their skin, hanging heavily on them and turning see through.
And a lot of people don’t know this, but rain normally isn’t very visible on camera, not unless it’s a downpour. And this was a downpour. The palm trees sway and the ocean waves rise a little higher than usual, but Atsumu and Sakusa, despite the storm going on both around them and inside them, do what they came here to do.
“Rui,” Atsumu says, voice huskier than it usually is, completely rid of his Kansai dialect, “Are you going to keep doing this? Are you going to let them tell you what to do? Are you really going to marry her?”
“Yes, I am. I’m doing it because it’s what I need to do, okay?” Sakusa says, clenching his fists as he walks away from him. “I don’t know what more you want from me, Takeru.”
Atsumu grabs him by the wrist, spinning him around. When he meets Atsumu’s eyes, they’re moist with unshed tears.
“Yes, you do.” He says, voice low and firm. His hold on his wrist tightens. “You know you do.”
The crew watching them stay completely silent, watching in awe, the only sounds being the howling wind, the rustling leaves, the waves crashing, and the rain hitting the ocean, as it continues to come down.
After a few seconds of silence, Sakusa rips his arm away from him.
“We cannot ruin our lives for… whatever this is.” He says, with a grave voice, motioning to the two of them. “I won’t let us do that.”
“Whatever this is?” Atsumu repeats hysterically, pushing his hair back in exasperation, “Why don’t you say it, Rui? Huh? Why don’t you say out loud exactly how you feel about me?”
Sakusa’s pupils shake, biting the inside of his mouth, as he turns back around to start walking away.
“We can’t do this. We’re not having this conversation.”
“Yes, we fucking are!” Atsumu yells, blocking his way, insistently. “Yes, we are! Because I love you! I love you, do you hear me? I’m fucking in love—”
Sakusa’s eyes widen, raising a hand to cup it over Atsumu’s mouth, urgently. “Will you stop screaming?! Someone will hear you!”
Atsumu pulls his hand away from him, tears streaming down his face now, and Sakusa almost laughs at how he finds it hard to differentiate his tears from the rain.
When Atsumu speaks, it’s shaky in all the right places, sincere down to its core.
“I know you love me too, Rui.” He says it softly, with all the tenderness he has in his body, “Run away with me.”
Sakusa’s crying now too, running a hand over his face in pent up frustration and pain, “Are you fucking insane? We can’t do that! We can’t just throw our lives away!”
“But isn’t that already what you’re doing?!” Atsumu yells, “You’re doing whatever they want you to do when you don’t even wanna do it, you’re going to marry this girl who you don’t even love and who doesn’t even love you, and you’re running away from me!”
Atsumu’s openly sobbing now, gasping and hiccuping through his words and Sakusa doesn’t even have to try .
His face screws up in a way that he knows is ugly but raw with emotion, as he asks, quietly, “ Why? Why are you doing this now?”
Atsumu takes a step closer, cupping Sakusa’s face with both of his trembling hands, pressing their foreheads together.
God, his hands were always so fucking cold.
“I just want you to let me love you.” He says, reverently, voice breaking, “I want you to let yourself love me.”
Sakusa sobs, hands reaching up to rest them over Atsumu’s. “How?”
“Just…” Atsumu whispers, “Please, Rui, I’m begging you. Please don’t get married.”
He feels Atsumu’s hand slowly slide into his hair and he matches it with a hand on his waist. Atsumu leans forward first, but it’s Sakusa who closes the distance.
It feels a lot like their first kiss, but at the same time, it’s nothing like it at all. There’s that same hunger and desire, that same heat and passion, but there’s something more, too.
There’s this unrecognizable ache in his chest, one that he knows has nothing to do with Rui or Takeru. An ache and an overwhelming need to keep kissing him, to kiss him until neither of them can breathe, to kiss him and just never stop.
Sakusa tastes rain and salt, he feels frantic hands go from his hair, down to his neck, face, back, arms, and up his wet shirt. He’s still crying and Atsumu is too, but their whimpers go from pained to desperate, as Atsumu drags him down to the sand.
“I want you.” He sighs into Sakusa’s mouth, “I want you so badly.”
I want you, Sakusa says in his head, I want you when I know I shouldn’t. I want you so much that I pray they never yell ‘cut’.
As they fall against the sand, Sakusa hovering over Atsumu’s body, their lips still pressed together, he almost wants to forget about the camera, forget about the movie, forget about everything, and just take him right here, in front of everyone, for all of them to see.
But he knows he has a job to do and that Atsumu is giving it his all right now. So, he steadies himself, reminds himself of where they are, and what they’re doing. He thinks about the camera angle and what would look good. Because they’re just acting, he tells himself.
They’re doing a job.
They kiss, they keep kissing, and Sakusa knows that they can stop kissing now, they should stop kissing now, but he just can’t seem to stop. Atsumu can’t seem to stop either, as they pretend to fumble with each other’s swimming trunks, pretend to grind their crotches together, and pretend that Sakusa’s pushing his cock inside of him.
They pretend, they keep pretending, and even as they stop kissing, they keep their heads pressed together, the tips of their noses touching, staring into each other’s eyes as the rain keeps pouring down.
There’s sand all over them and Sakusa’s never wanted to take a hot bath so badly in his life, but god, Atsumu was so beautiful .
After what feels like the longest minute of their lives, they pretend to come in unison, closing their eyes and moaning weakly into each other’s mouths.
And it’s softer than a whisper, so soft that he barely even hears it, so soft that Sakusa knows the mics wouldn’t have picked it up, but he knows that at the very end, Atsumu says his name.
Sakusa feels something inside of him break completely.
He doesn’t hear Ukai yell cut. He doesn’t even notice when people rush over to them, covering them with towels and holding umbrellas over their heads. He can only vaguely hear the crew clapping and cheering for them.
Because in that moment, all the two of them can bring themselves to do is sit in the sand, hold each other, and sob.
Everyone in the set can only watch, some of them probably thinking that they just got way too into their roles, and Sakusa knows that he’s probably going to chalk it up to that, if someone were to ask him later on.
“Omi,” Atsumu sobs into his shoulder, squeezing him tighter, “We did it. It’s over.”
“Yeah.” Sakusa says, voice tired and weak as he continues to hiccup. “It’s over.”
But Sakusa knows that right now, they weren’t Rui and Takeru at all.
They were just Miya Atsumu and Sakusa Kiyoomi, holding onto each other for dear life.
Later into the night, after their celebratory dinner with cast and crew, they wordlessly walk into Atsumu’s room, knowing that something had changed.
Everything had changed.
There’s nothing frantic about the way they kiss and nose at each other’s necks and chests, their hands languid as they rid each other of their clothes, as Sakusa pushes Atsumu into bed, pressing gentle kisses to his stomach as he pulls down his shorts.
There’s something delicate about Atsumu tonight that usually wasn’t there when they had sex, something so beautifully vulnerable in his eyes that Sakusa can’t put a name to.
He doesn’t remember ever wanting anyone this badly.
“Omi,” Atsumu sighs, caressing Sakusa’s cheek with the back of his fingers, “Can you fuck me tonight?”
Sakusa’s breath hitches, blood rushing downwards at an alarming speed at the mere thought. “Are you sure?”
“Yeah.” Atsumu nods, clinging onto him, wrapping his legs around his waist like a koala. “Just… be gentle.”
They both know they didn’t do gentle. They’d never done gentle before.
But Sakusa nods, rubbing Atsumu’s hip comfortingly.
“Okay. But just so you know, I come too fast when I top.”
“That’s okay.” Atsumu smiles, “I come too fast when I bottom.”
The first press of Sakusa’s fingers against Atsumu’s hole already has him hissing.
“Painful?” Sakusa asks, pausing worriedly.
“Sensitive.” Atsumu explains, closing his eyes, “Keep going.”
There’s something magical about being able to watch Miya Atsumu slowly fall apart. The way his face goes from pinched to pleasured, the way the muscles in his stomach and his thighs twitch, how firmly he holds onto Sakusa’s arms, his grip tightening every time he hits a particularly delicious spot.
His noises gradually get louder and Sakusa knows he’s ready once he starts subconsciously fucking his hips down against his hand.
He was so goddamn pretty.
“Omi,” Atsumu moans loudly, twisting against the sheets, “I want you inside me now.”
Sakusa shushes him. “You know the others can hear us? I just found that out today.”
“I don’t care.” He responds, pulling Sakusa closer, “I don’t care. Fuck me. Let ‘em all hear me. I want ‘em to know how good ya make me feel.”
Sakusa wondered what it was about Miya Atsumu that somehow got him to do everything he probably never would have, if he hadn’t met him.
“Wait, I have to get a condom—”
“Are you clean?” Atsumu asks. “‘Cause I am.”
Sakusa freezes. He looks down at the man. “Yes. I am.”
“Then, we don’t need one.” Atsumu says, “Just get in me.”
“I’m sure, if that’s what you’re worried about.” He says, “If you don’t want to, it’s fine, but… I want it. I wanna feel you inside me.”
There was no possible way Sakusa would’ve ever found the strength to say no to that.
When Sakusa pushes into him, he does it slowly, as slow as he possibly can, half for Atsumu’s sake and half for his own sake.
As he sinks into him, neither of them break eye contact. Sakusa watches as Atsumu’s eyes go hazy, sex drunk, like he couldn’t help but close them, but didn’t want to stop looking at him. His mouth opens into an ‘o’, and Sakusa feels the heels of his feet digging into his back, sees his fingers closing around the bedsheets.
“Fuck,” Atsumu gasps, “ Shit, that feels good.”
“Atsumu,” Sakusa breathes out, running a hand through his golden hair, “You feel amazing.”
He smiles at him, raising both his arms up and winding them around Sakusa’s neck.
“Fuck me, Omi. Make it last.”
When Sakusa fucks him, he does it like it’s their first time. He pulls out gently, slowly, and then fucks into him hard. He does that again, again, and again. They take their time, running their hands over each other’s skin, pressing soft kisses to any part of their body they can reach that isn’t their lips, Atsumu moaning his name over and over, like it’s something sacred.
They never stop looking at each other. No matter how much it gets, Sakusa doesn’t close his eyes, keeping them trained on the man beneath him. Laid out wantonly, looking at him like no one had ever made him feel better, like he was the only one who’d ever made him feel so good in his life.
His eyes are hazy, drool dribbling down the side of his mouth, skin tinged red, and Sakusa had never seen anyone so fucking beautiful.
“I’m gonna come,” He whimpers, face scrunching up gorgeously, “Fuck, Omi, yer gonna make me come.”
“Keep looking at me, baby.” Sakusa says, the pet name that Atsumu usually used on him, rolling off his tongue so easily, “And come for me.”
And Atsumu does. He comes untouched and he comes hard, the sticky liquid going all over both their torsos, but he doesn’t close his eyes, not once.
Tears gather at the corners of his eyes, his nails digging into Sakusa’s back so deeply that it draws blood, and he’s shaking from head to toe.
“Omi,” Atsumu garbles, “Come inside me. Please.”
Sakusa topples over the edge almost immediately at those words, Atsumu whimpering as he makes a strangled noise, cock twitching as he releases inside of him, riding out his orgasm coming in strong waves.
For a long time after, though it couldn’t have been more than a few minutes, they lay in their mess, staring at each other, panting, reeling from… everything that’s happened the past few months.
And Sakusa realizes then and there, that he really fucking likes Miya Atsumu.
He doesn’t know if it’s love, he’s never been sure if he actually knows anything about any of that, but he was sure that this had to be something close to it.
But see, the problem was this.
Sakusa always liked to think of himself as a sturdy brick house. He was consistent, he was dependable, he stuck to what he was taught, what was familiar, and he stuck to his roots. He was comfortable with who he was, what he knew, and what he could do. And he liked being comfortable.
He liked being safe.
Miya Atsumu... was like a tornado. He didn’t look like it. Bright and attention catching, loud in all possible ways, more like the sun.
But to Sakusa, that’s what he was.
A tornado that came and messed everything up, turned everything upside down, taking away everything that was comfortable and familiar, and dismantling everything Sakusa Kiyoomi thought he understood about himself.
Miya Atsumu sure is a beautiful tornado, Sakusa thinks as he wipes the man’s stray tears away with his thumb, but I know he’s gonna break me, whether he’ll mean to or not.
The last time Sakusa had allowed himself to feel anything close to love, it had cost him his pride. He wasn’t going to make that same mistake again.
So, when he notices Atsumu leaning forward, as if about to kiss him, Sakusa holds his breath and uses all the control he has left in him, to duck his head into his shoulder instead.
He feels Atsumu freeze before eventually sagging against him in disappointment.
“Ah.” He says faintly. “Fair enough.”
Sakusa isn’t sure what that means, but he doesn’t say a word.
After a little longer, Atsumu starts talking.
“Omi-Omi,” Atsumu says softly against his ear, “If it means anything… I don’t just let any of my co-stars fuck me whenever they want.”
Sakusa lets out a breathy laugh.
“So I guess... this means yer my favorite one.” He says, and for some reason, he sounds so defeated.
“Thank you, Atsumu.” He says, pressing a soft kiss to his shoulder, closing his eyes, letting himself drown in the feeling of him one last time.
“If it means anything… if I wasnt— if I didn’t...”
Sakusa doesn’t exactly know how to say it.
If I didn’t have so many issues, maybe I’d give this a shot. Maybe if I wasn’t so scared of everything, or if I knew how to do this, I’d try. Maybe if you didn’t scare me so much, I wouldn’t run. Maybe if I didn’t have too many priorities, too many things that are more important to me than some whirlwind romance, I would.
Maybe if you weren’t Miya Atsumu.
It turns out, he doesn’t have to say anything.
Atsumu only shakes his head, giving him a smile so warm, so understanding, like he knows, and says, “I get it, Omi. Believe me. I do.”
He doesn’t know how long they hold each other, but they stay in each other’s arms for a long time.
It’s almost like just for one night, they allow themselves to be selfish enough not to let go.
They fly home to Tokyo the next morning. On the plane, Sakusa reads a book with airpods in his ears, while Atsumu looks out the window until he falls asleep. They don’t talk, they don’t even look at each other, but Atsumu had still held Sakusa’s hand until the plane took off.
Suna and Kiyoko only look at each other knowingly.
Sakusa goes home to his apartment, Atsumu goes home to his, and it’s only then that it sinks in that filming for Make It Count was officially over.
Everything between them was over. Because that’s what it said in their contract.
It was over and that much was clear.
Because after that night in Atsumu’s hotel room in Okinawa, they completely stop speaking.
“Oh. He speaks.” Osamu deadpans, looking up from his phone. “Ya finally gonna tell us why ya came back from Okinawa lookin’ like someone died?”
“I need a drink.”
“Hey.” Osamu scolds.
“No, you don’t.” Kita says. “Remember what I told you? Stop turning—“
“— to alcohol as a solution and talk to my friends, yeah, I know. ” Atsumu sighs, knocking the back of his head against the wall above his bed. “I’m not supposed to talk about it, though. It’s in our contract.”
“Contract…?” Suna trails off, “Wait, no one there made you do anything weird, did they?”
“What? No.” Atsumu says quickly, “It’s just… Omi.”
“Of course we know it’s about him.” Osamu scoffs, “We’re asking what the hell happened.”
“Contract…” Suna repeats to himself, as if saving that information in the back of his head to be brought up at a later time.
Atsumu bites the inside of his lip, wondering if there was a delicate way to admit that the sex was so good that he thinks of it every night before bed, that he keeps dreaming of those rare smiles and smooth hands that were always so stupidly warm, that he was stupid enough to fall for his co-star when said co-star literally made him sign a contract that told him not to.
“I caught feelings.” is all he ends up saying as an explanation before burying his face in his hands in shame.
The three who have been residing in his room for the past week as moral support stare at him in silence. This was usually the part where his friends would start to make fun of him and ask if the dick was that good (it was), before telling him to just get over himself and confess.
And they probably would have.
If the person he’d caught feelings for wasn’t Sakusa Kiyoomi and he wasn’t Miya Atsumu.
“Did ya tell him?” Osamu asks.
Atsumu shakes his head. “But I think he knows.”
“Why?” Kita presses, “Does he like you back?”
Atsumu thinks back to that night, when he’d closed his eyes, lifted his head up from the bed, only for Sakusa to turn his face away.
It was a feeling of shame he doesn’t think he’ll ever forget.
“No.” Atsumu says, smiling joylessly. “‘Course not. He wouldn’t let that happen. Not with my reputation.”
“Did he say that?” Suna asks, eyebrows furrowing, both Kita and Osamu’s expressions hardening.
“He didn’t need to say it.”
Kita immediately relaxes. “If he didn’t say it, then don’t put words in his mouth. That isn’t fair to him.”
He hated when Kita was right.
Atsumu sighs heavily, closing his eyes. “I’ll be fine. Just gimme a fuckin’ minute to cope and I’ll be over it. I knew this’d happen, anyway.”
“What the fuck was I even thinkin’?” Atsumu lets out, frustrated with himself, “I finally get my shit together for a second after years of bein’ a mess and suddenly think it’s my chance to be happy and in love.”
“There’s nothing wrong with that.” Kita says firmly.
“But I can’t risk it. For either of us. I have a fuckin’ career to save.” Atsumu retorts. “And he… has better things to do with his time.”
He exhales shakily, running a hand through his hair. “Better people , anyway.”
“Atsumu.” Suna says, and he can recognize the man’s manager voice when he hears it. “If you really think that it’d be the best for both of you not to pursue anything more, then that’s fine. Because as your manager, I’m not gonna sit here and say that I’d be fully onboard with you two dating.”
Atsumu knows there’s a but.
“But as your friend,” Suna says, leaning closer to him to rest a hand over his and squeeze lightly, “I’m gonna need you to stop looking at yourself as someone unworthy of living your goddamn life . You’ve done so much just to get here. You’ve done so fucking good, you hear me? How many people do you know would be able to get through what you did and make it out alive?”
Atsumu refuses to meet his eyes because he feels a lump in his throat and crying right now would be embarrassing, but then he feels his brother throw an arm around him, and he starts sniffling anyway.
“Mmm.” is all he says, before turning and hiding his face in Osamu’s neck. “I’ll be fine. Just gimme a minute.”
As he lets himself cry on his brother’s shoulder a little bit (because Kita always said that he should when he feels like it), Suna’s hand stays in his, Kita draws comforting patterns on his leg with his fingers, and Osamu strokes his hair, he realizes that as long as he has this, then he means it.
“I’m gonna make him some tea.” Kita whispers. “So, he feels better.”
I’ll be fine, Atsumu thinks to himself, just give me a minute.
“Is he okay?” Komori asks under his breath, motioning to the boy doing yoga on the floor. “He only does this when he’s being dramatic about something.”
“I think it has to do with Miya Atsumu.” Kiyoko says, sipping her coffee, admiring Sakusa’s graceful looking Cobra Pose. “They were… something.”
Sakusa turns his head to give them a dirty look. “Will you two leave me alone? I’m trying to relax here.”
Komori ignores him, as he always does.
“Something?” He repeats, intrigued. “Define something. Something as in, the way he was with Ushiwaka? Or something as in, how you and Yachi were acting pre-defining the relationship talk?”
Kiyoko blushes but otherwise doesn’t say anything at the mention of her long-term girlfriend.
“Neither. Based on what I’ve heard… almost every night, may I add—”
Sakusa sits up, shooting her a pointed glare. “Don’t you dare finish that sentence.”
She purses her lips and doesn’t say anything more, but that had been more than enough for Komori to put two and two together.
“So, you were fucking.” Komori waves his hand. “Yeah, gathered that much. But why the yoga? The dick was so good that you have to meditate about it?”
Sakusa almost says yes.
“Fuck you.” He says instead, transitioning from his Cobra Pose to a Downward Dog Pose. “Nothing happened. We filmed a movie, it went well, it’s over, that’s it. End of story.”
Komori clicks his tongue, turning back to Kiyoko. “So, they were fucking and then what?”
“I don’t know.” She shrugs. “That’s the problem.”
“Are you two going to keep talking about my personal life like I’m not sitting right here?” Sakusa grumbles.
“Yes, if you don’t start talking about it yourself.” Komori says, crossing his arms, leaning back on the couch. “I’m your cousin. I need to know these things.”
“For what reason?”
“Obviously, because I care about you and love you and all that.” Komori rolls his eyes, as if it were the most boring thing in the world. “And for blackmail material ten years later, of course.”
“Of course.” Sakusa nods, like he knew that.
“So?” Komori presses, “Tell me. You know the only reason I’m so intrigued is because you haven’t slept with anyone since Ushiwaka. Better yet, you haven’t slept with anyone other than Ushiwaka.”
Sakusa grits his teeth. “What are you trying to say?”
“Motoya-kun, I don’t know if you should—” Kiyoko starts worriedly.
“That you like Atsumu.” Komori finishes. “Don’t you?”
Kiyoko winces, gaze slowly moving to rest on Sakusa’s face, waiting for a reaction that she expected to be explosive.
Instead, he does nothing.
He simply goes down into a Child Pose and says, “No, I don’t.”
Komori raises his eyebrows, genuinely surprised at the lack of anger and defensiveness. “Really?”
“I could have.” He says without looking at them, “But I can’t and I won’t.”
“I don’t think that’s how liking someone works.” Komori points out.
“Well, sometimes it is.” Sakusa argues, “Like this time. Don’t push it. I don’t have anything else to say.”
Komori bites his tongue, holding back from saying anything more, lest he really does piss his cousin off. But it comes out like word vomit, anyway.
“You know,” He says cautiously, “Just because it didn’t work out with one person… doesn’t mean it’s not gonna work out with anyone .”
That makes Sakusa pause, before slowly getting up from his yoga pose, until he’s just sitting on his knees.
He doesn’t look at either of his friends as he starts to talk.
“It’s not about it not working out.” He says, voice so void of any emotion that Komori can’t even be sure whether he’s lying or not. “Wakatoshi and I were only together for a year. I’m not even sure if I was actually in love with him. And I was upset, yes, but our breakup didn’t feel like the end of the world. You know what did, though?”
He doesn’t wait for them to answer before continuing.
“It was realizing that I was only a placeholder for someone he couldn’t have, having my heart broken, and then being reminded of it over and over again through billboards, commercials, and movies everywhere I went. It was not being given the time to forget, the time to heal, the time to breathe, because I had to work. It was wanting to do so much, having so much that I wanted to achieve, but my heart not being in it at all. It was knowing that our relationship would’ve been doomed from the start anyway, because we’re celebrities and we’re gay and can’t come out lest we risk our fucking careers, but taking the risk anyway because I thought I’d be safe with him.”
Komori hears the slight tinge in Sakusa’s voice and so he quietly walks over to him, settling cross-legged, resting a hand on his back.
“Miya Atsumu… god , his name alone is just too big for me.” Sakusa finishes, “I shouldn’t. I can’t.”
“Okay.” Komori doesn’t say anything more, knowing that that was enough for him for today, “Okay. Come on. I’ll do yoga with you.”
“Me too.” Kiyoko says, putting her coffee down, and then getting on the floor on Sakusa’s other side.
Sakusa sniffs, blinking away his unshed tears. “Okay. Boat Pose.”
He doesn’t tell them that the first night he’d spent at home after getting back from Okinawa, he’d grabbed his phone at 2AM, typing and deleting, typing and deleting, wondering what exactly he wanted to say and if he should say it.
It was only after twenty minutes of that, that he’d started laughing. He started laughing so hard, like a fucking crazy person, and he couldn’t even remember if he’d ever laughed like that all by himself before.
It was just so fucking stupid.
What the fuck, he thought to himself with an almost crazed smile as he looked up at his dark ceiling, we never even asked for each other’s numbers.
They don’t see each other at all until premiere night.
“Sunarin,” Atsumu whines as his manager fusses with his suit, “I can’t do this. I can’t get in that stupid limo. I don’t want them all to see me yet. I don’t wanna see him yet, I’m not ready. Can’t ya do it for me?”
“Who am I, your twin?” Suna makes a face, “And it’s been ten months. You’re going to have to do a bunch of interviews with him. If you aren’t ready now, when will you be?”
“Rin,” Atsumu repeats and Suna can tell by his face and the tone of his voice that he’s not just being dramatic right now. “I’m scared.”
Suna sighs, taking both of Atsumu’s shoulders and squeezing them tight. “Listen to me, you problem child.”
He responds with a pout.
“This is your comeback movie.” Suna reminds him, “A comeback movie that I already know you deserve a fucking award for. The both of you. You hated each other at first, remember that? And only started having sex in the first place, because doing this film meant so damn much to the both of you, that you decided to be fuck buddies just to be able to do it without beating each other up.”
Atsumu snorts weakly. “It makes no fuckin’ sense now that you put it that way.”
“That’s because it doesn’t.” Suna retorts, “Now, you’re gonna get out there, walk that red carpet, nail all the interviews, watch you and Sakusa Kiyoomi kill it on screen, and you’re gonna remember just how fucking good you are what you do. Okay?”
Atsumu almost cries, but that’d be embarrassing and would also ruin his makeup, so he smiles instead.
“I know I don’t say this shit enough ‘cause it’s gross, but I’m really glad yer my manager now, Sunarin.”
“Don’t be gross, I’ll throw up.” He responds on autopilot, but presses a chaste kiss to Atsumu’s forehead anyway. “Now, let’s go. I swear to you, once you get there and see Sakusa and Kageyama and the rest of the cast and crew, you’ll realize you’re just being a damn drama queen and that it really isn’t that bad.”
“Oh my god, Rin. Look at him. His suit is sparkly.” Atsumu laments, “I can’t get out of this limo. This isn’t bad, this is worse!”
“Why are you so fucking dramatic?”
“Rin! He looks like he’s photoshopped!” He motions out the window at Sakusa who’s in the middle of smiling and waving stiffly at the crowd from afar.
Oh, that’s his serious voice. “I’m going.”
The second he steps out, he’s bombarded almost instantly with screams of his name, flashing lights, cameras and mics being pointed at him, pictures and posters of him being waved in the air from all directions.
He feels his heartbeat quicken. Whether it’s in a good way or a bad way, he couldn’t be sure. Maybe it’s both.
He straightens his suit, flashes everyone a practiced smile, and waves. Despite having been away from this for nearly two years now, despite all this being the exact reason he needed to get away for that long, something about it felt comforting.
Something about it, despite everything, still felt like home.
When he turns his head, he sees Sakusa staring at him with an expression he can’t read. And then naturally, like nothing had ever happened between them, he nods at him with a slight smile.
He then motions to Atsumu with a hand, pointing the interviewer he’s talking to towards his direction and says, “And that, over there, is the co-star I was just talking about.”
He really is a pro, Atsumu admires. God knows he wasn’t that put together five years into his stardom.
“Miya Atsumu!” He hears his name being called out, a mic being held out to him, “We haven’t seen you in such a long time! How does it feel to be back?”
In response, Atsumu turns his head only slightly towards the mic as he makes his way to Sakusa Kiyoomi, the way he’s wanted to all these months, and then simply says;
“It’s good to be back.”
When he reaches Sakusa’s side, he greets him with a bright “Omi-Omi!” and he is greeted back with a sturdy, comforting arm around his waist. Whether it’s for the cameras or just him, he couldn’t be sure, but he decides not to wonder, for his own sake.
He guesses everything is coming naturally to them right now, because at least this part is familiar.
Several times throughout his career, Atsumu has had to act like he loved someone when he couldn’t stand them, like he was close to someone who he hadn’t spoken a word to outside their scripts, like he knew them beyond their character, or like they were nothing but a co-worker to him when they’d made each other come a week before. It was just another day in the life.
Although in a way, this was still a first.
Because this was probably the first time Atsumu has had to act like he wasn’t halfway in love with his co-star, when he was. Stupidly so.
He’s extremely talented and it’s truly such an honor to work with him. He’s pretty much been a household name for years and I’ve been a fan since I was in high school. It’s like a dream, Sakusa says.
I’ve seen some of his works and he’s just so amazing and I was so excited to hear that we’d be working together, especially since we’re the same age. I couldn’t have asked for a better comeback project and partner, Atsumu beams.
Translation: Oh, we fucking hated each other, but only because we wanted to eat each other up. So, we had sex so we could get through the damn movie. But now it’s weird so here we are, I guess.
Atsumu wonders what it’d be like if all celebrities were just completely honest in every single interview. He has to hold back a snort at the thought.
It passes like a blur. They spend the entire time joined at the hip but not really feeling each other’s presence at all. It’s only after they escape the red carpet, heading to the actual venue, given a moment to themselves away from the camera flashes and screaming crowds, that they get to stop being Rui and Takeru, and just get to be Omi and Atsumu.
Atsumu is the first to break the silence, this time without his on-camera voice.
“Long time no see.” He says, softly.
“Mmm.” Sakusa hums, without looking at him.
A beat later, “Atsumu?”
“After all this, can you give me your number?”
Atsumu almost sputters, almost takes offense, almost asks him why the hell he would delete his number like that as if they were exes, before he realizes.
Sakusa seems to bite back a laugh. “Yeah.”
“Christ,” Atsumu breathes out a laugh, “No wonder ya never kept in touch.”
Sakusa shrugs. “Neither did you. You didn’t even realize.”
Atsumu bites his tongue, holds back from saying that he thought that Sakusa wouldn’t have wanted him to.
He wonders suddenly, a thought that he decidedly pushes to the very back of his mind the second it comes up, what Sakusa would’ve said to him if he could’ve called.
Selfishly, Atsumu hopes that it was to tell him that he missed him. He hopes it was to say that he dreamt of him every fucking night. He hopes it was to say that he wanted him back, just as desperately as he did. He hopes it was to tell him to toss out the contract. He hopes that it was to tell him that his touch was the only thing that could make him feel good.
And he hopes, most selfishly of all, that Sakusa Kiyoomi would tell him he didn’t want anyone else’s touch but his.
“Are you ready?” Sakusa asks, interrupting his thoughts.
For what, Atsumu asks in his head, and then realizes it doesn’t matter, because whether it was being ready for the movie, being back in the spotlight, or sitting next to him and having to be with him again, he wasn’t ready for any of it.
He wasn’t ready. He was terrified. That’s all he’s ever been, all the fucking time, and no one could ever see it.
“Yeah.” He answers. “‘Course I am.”
“Hinata, you dumbass!” Kageyama scolds after his date to the premiere spills half their popcorn before they even sit down. “Now what are we supposed to eat?”
“I didn’t mean to do— oh, Yama-yama,” He whispers loudly in a failed attempt at being lowkey, motioning to Atsumu and Sakusa who are seated just a few seats away from them, “Are they the ones who you said were… you know, boinking?”
“Boinking.” Sakusa repeats disbelievingly under his breath.
“So much for Rule #2, huh, Omi-kun?” Atsumu tries to joke. “Seems like we’re somewhat of an item now.”
“What item?” Sakusa scoffs, squirming in his seat. “We haven’t even seen each other in ten months. Atsumu, why the hell are you squeezing my arm?”
“Huh?” Atsumu looks down and realizes that he’d indeed been squeezing the man’s arm. He hadn’t even realized. “Oh. Sorry.”
Sakusa regards him suspiciously as Atsumu rips his hand away, taking it in his other hand.
“You’re nervous.” Sakusa says and it isn’t a question.
“No, I’m not.” Atsumu scoffs.
“I’ve done this a hundred more times than you have.” Atsumu points out, “Don’t ya fuckin’ patronize me.”
“I’m just saying…” Sakusa shrugs, turning his attention back to the big screen that’s still dark, “You’re all nervous for no reason. You know we did good.”
“Screw you. Don’t act all tough.” Atsumu bites back, his gaze going down to Sakusa’s own hands. “Yer fuckin’ hands are shakin’.”
“They are not.”
“I thought you said they’ve fixed it.” Hinata says, leaning into Kageyama. “Through the boinking.”
“No, I told you, remember?” Kageyama clarifies, “Towards the end, there were rumors that they stopped the boinking.”
“I feel like I’m going to punch someone before I even get to watch this movie and I’m not sure who.” Sakusa announces.
“Better not be me, ‘cause my makeup artist snapped today.” Atsumu says, making a show of protecting his face.
In the middle of their petty squabble, they’re interrupted by a loud noise from the surround sound speakers and the screen going bright.
“Oh god,” Atsumu lets out without meaning to, “Oh wow. I’m gonna pass out.”
“What exactly are you so nervous for? You’re making me nervous!” Sakusa complains.
“Well, I’m sorry but if you were so perfectly calm, why’re ya shakin’ in yer boots, huh?”
“See, there they go again.” Kageyama points to them, speaking in a tone that makes him sound like a narrator in a nature documentary.
“Because this happens to be my first time playing the romantic lead.” Sakusa admits, “Which you can’t exactly say the same for yourself.”
“Well, this happens to be the first movie I’ve done ever since I came back from my hiatus so forgive me for bein’ fussy over it!”
The only thing that actually manages to shut them both up is the big R appearing on the screen as a female voiceover warns the audience that this movie was Rated R and that anyone under the age of 17 required parental guidance.
“‘Cause of the boinking?” Hinata asks.
“In the rain.” Kageyama replies, like it’s something magical.
Once the opening scene starts though, the theater goes quiet. The film opens with a preview of the beach scene, a glimpse of them crying and yelling at each other in the rain, and Atsumu notices just how well it had come out, before it suddenly jumps back in time to tell the audience how exactly Rui and Takeru had gotten to that point.
And it’s only as the film plays on, that Atsumu realizes what exactly he’d been so scared of before coming here. It was something he hadn’t even thought about, something he’d probably unconsciously tried not to think about to save himself from it.
It wasn’t just about seeing the first film he’s done after his stupid hiatus. It wasn’t just about seeing Sakusa Kiyoomi again after ten months. It wasn’t just about being the center of attention, in the middle of all those cameras and flashing lights again. It was this.
It was seeing his tender smile on screen as Sakusa talked to him about his onscreen mother, it was seeing them wrestle each other in the sand and hearing their joint laughter, it was seeing them slow dance, seeing them talk, seeing them look at each other with more fondness than Atsumu could even begin to put into words, seeing them touch, hold, kiss, and it was this.
This was exactly what he was so scared of.
He was scared of sitting here for an hour and a half and not seeing Rui and Takeru’s story, but instead watching himself slowly fall in love with Sakusa Kiyoomi on the big screen for everyone else to see.
An hour in, he hears people sniffing around them, and he doesn’t realize he’s crying too until his tears land on his annoyingly jittery hands on his lap.
He looks to his right and sees one of Sakusa’s hands clutching on tightly to the armrest, like he needed something to hold onto.
Quietly, without any hesitation, Atsumu reaches out to rest his hand on top of his. And just like before, so naturally, like they’d always been meant to do it, Sakusa turns his palm to face his, and holds on.
They watch themselves smile, laugh, fall, fail, and love. And all the while, they keep their fingers interlaced between them, still shaky but safe.
They keep them like that all the way until the end of the movie.
Once the credits start rolling, the audience claps, the lights come back on, and like nothing had happened, they let each other go.
But when they finally turn to look at each other for the first time since the movie started, they’re both in tears.
“See?” Sakusa says, “Didn’t have anything to worry about, did you?”
“Fuck you.” Atsumu sniffs, trying to pull himself together. “Why are gay movies always so damn heavy?”
“Just be grateful that they got together and neither of them were killed off.” Sakusa says and Atsumu thinks, fair point.
Ukai starts talking to the audience and as they wait for their turn to say something, Sakusa asks, “Are you going to the after party?”
Atsumu… wasn’t so sure about that. He’d decided before anything else that he wouldn’t be going to any parties for a long while for the sake of his own sanity. He’d been to enough of those to last a goddamn lifetime.
But Sakusa keeps looking at him like he’s hopeful. Like he wants him there. Like there’s something more he needs from him that he just hasn’t gotten yet.
And a part of Atsumu, even knowing that it would be wrong, even knowing that there wouldn’t be a point to any of this, he wants to know.
“Yeah.” He says easily, like he’d decided on it since the very beginning, “Of course I am.”
Sakusa will admit that he hadn’t thought this through.
His initial plan was to ask Atsumu if he wanted a drink, initiate small talk, slowly ease them both away from the crowd, and ask him if he wanted to talk about things between them.
Easy to follow. Simple. Foolproof.
Except, he’d forgotten to consider the fact that this was a party full of famous people. Most of them being a lot more famous than him and for much longer, too. And of course, he doesn’t know why he hadn’t expected this, but they all crowd around Atsumu because he’s fucking Miya Atsumu, and they’re all probably saying the exact same things based on the stiff expression on his face.
‘Great movie! Excellent performance! Brought tears to my eyes! By the way, where the fuck have you been?’
Sakusa knows this because despite not being Miya Atsumu, he’s constantly been getting the same exact question, to which he wished he could respond, “How the fuck am I supposed to know that?”
He takes another angry shot of Vodka. He doesn’t know how many he’s had but based on the fact that it’s starting to taste a little like water, he’s guessing he should cut himself off soon.
The past ten months leading up to this moment had been… a rollercoaster, to say the least. He has never had to jump so many mental hurdles in his life.
He would go from, “No, Kiyoomi, this is a bad idea, you know you wouldn’t be good for each other, just focus on your job” to “But remember how he made you feel? Remember how easy it was to laugh? Remember how he touched you and you didn’t think it could ever feel so good to be touched?” in the span of a minute.
And that just kept going on and on like a vicious cycle. For ten months. Ten. Whole. Months. He thought he was going insane.
His breaking point came in the form of Miya Atsumu’s new underwear commercial. The aftermath of that was a crack in his TV screen, lots of violent masturbation, and a new bottle of lotion. And at that very low point, he finally came to the conclusion, that you know what? This wasn’t working.
If ten months have passed and he still couldn’t get Miya Atsumu out of his head, then maybe that was a sign. Being with him and having sex with him brought out a kind of fire that Sakusa didn’t even know he had in him. So surely, professionally speaking, it’d be better for both of them to just… let things progress from wherever they’d left off, right? That makes sense.
Maybe, if they just talked about it and then took things slow, then everything would turn out alright. Because he was Sakusa Kiyoomi and he would never allow himself to get to the point of being in the middle of a romantic disaster. Right?
He takes another shot because he figures if he does, his thoughts will start making more sense.
“Omi?” Atsumu says, appearing right in front of him, somehow managing to look both normal but also scarily livid, “Sorry. But can you pretend to talk to me about something important? I’m one more unwanted conversation away from having a full-blown nervous breakdown. I’m not kidding.”
Sakusa can tell that he isn’t. He motions to the mini-bar. “You want a drink?”
“You have no idea.” Atsumu closes his eyes and takes a deep breath. “But, no. Just talk to me.”
Sakusa feels sorry, suddenly. It dawns on him that Atsumu probably didn’t wanna come in the first place and probably knew he was gonna get overwhelmed, but he came anyway.
Sakusa has a feeling that it’s just because he’d asked.
He takes one last shot. He’s a little dizzy now but also, conveniently braver.
“Atsumu,” He says, as he slams his shot glass down onto the table, “Wanna get out of here? With me?”
Atsumu looks at him like he’d never wanted anything more, but holds onto his common sense. “Where? To do what?”
“I don’t know. My apartment? Yours?” Sakusa says, “Anywhere we want. We can just talk. Just us.”
“Sure. Yeah. That’d be… nice.” Atsumu gulps, “To talk, I mean. Just us. Talking.”
“Fuck.” Atsumu growls.
“The contract—” Sakusa says urgently, as Atsumu starts mouthing at his neck the second they close the apartment door, “Where is it? The fucking… the first rule.”
“Are you serious right now?” Atsumu groans exasperatedly, “Yer the one who started fuckin’ palmin’ me in the car.”
“Just get the stupid contract.” Sakusa insists, earning another growl as Atsumu pulls away.
“Fine.” He bites out, stomping towards a nearby drawer, ripping it open, and taking out the infamous pen and paper.
“Here. We better not just have a fuckin’ discussion about that stupid contract, ‘cause Suna’s gonna kill me for goin’ to the afterparty so it better be worth it.”
As fast as he can, Sakusa grabs it, uncaps the pen, and erases the “1. The span of this arrangement will only last up to the very last day of filming. Anything past that is forbidden. ” portion.
He runs the pen on top of it over and over until it’s completely unreadable.
“Shit, Omi.” Atsumu sighs from behind him, winding his arms around his waist, nosing at his jaw. “Yer so thorough. I dunno why, but it’s gettin’ me real hot and heavy right now.”
“Shut up.” Sakusa grits out.
“Ya said we could talk.” Atsumu teases, biting his earlobe, “This what ya call talkin’?”
Sakusa tosses both the contract and the pen and it lands somewhere he doesn’t care enough to check, instantly pulling Atsumu by the collar into what he knows is his bedroom.
“Start touching me before I lose my goddamn mind.”
“Fuuuuuuuuuuuck,” Sakusa moans, long and high-pitched, as Atsumu slides back into him for a third time, the two of them slotting together with ease as if they’d never been apart, “God. God. Please.”
“How d’ya want to come, Omi?” Atsumu asks, voice already ragged, “Want it rough?”
“Jus’ make me come. Been too long.” Sakusa begs, words slurring, hands frantically reaching for any part of Atsumu he can hold onto, “Make me come now. Please. Want you.”
“Shit, Omi, I missed ya.” Atsumu says, as he thrusts into him deep and hard, pushing out a strangled groan from him, “ Fuck, I missed this. Missed hearin’ ya. Missed seein’ ya fall apart for me like this.”
“Atsumu,” Sakusa chokes out, opening his legs wider, eyes rolling into the back of his head, “More.”
How could Atsumu ever say no to something like that?
Atsumu pounds into him, hitting the angle that he has memorized like the back of his hand, fingers digging bruises into Sakusa’s hips.
He pants and writhes, digging crescents into Atsumu’s skin with his nails, biting down onto the sheets to keep his noises in.
Atsumu rips it out of his mouth as he starts pounding him faster. “Don’t do that. Let me hear ya.”
Sakusa whines loudly, thighs beginning to shake, face beginning to twist, the telltale sign that he’s getting close.
“Fucking touch me.” He gasps, a hand flying out to grab onto the pillow behind his head to anchor him. “ Fuck, Atsumu, I’m gonna fucking come.”
With the man underneath him both looking and sounding like that, Atsumu doesn’t even know if he’s going to last. So he creeps his hands up and twists Sakusa’s nipples as he starts fucking into him the exact way he knows he likes, the way that always makes him come too fast.
It makes him scream. He screams.
“Oh god, gonna come,” He says, voice pinched and urgent, “ God, Atsumu, I’m gonna come so hard—“
Atsumu had never seen someone come so hard, untouched. There’s so much of it, shooting all over the both of them, the pillow, all over his own hair, and some continuously dribbling down his cock.
He moans and shakes for what feels like forever, Atsumu helping him ride his orgasm out for as long as he can.
And then something happens.
Once he calms down, hips jerking away from sensitivity, Sakusa opens his eyes, tears falling down the sides of his face as he does.
And then he looks straight at him, looks him right in the fucking eye, and says nothing but his name.
“Atsumu.” He whispers weakly.
He was so fucking beautiful that it hurt.
“Oh, fuck .” Atsumu grits out, slamming into him one last time, burying his face in Sakusa’s shoulder as he comes and comes and keeps coming, wave after wave, and he bites down into the man’s skin because he knows if he doesn’t, he’ll say something stupid like I think I might love you.
They stay still and quiet as they try to catch their breaths, when suddenly he feels Sakusa’s fingers start running up and down his back, gently.
He shivers at the touch, the tenderness feeling unfamiliar.
“Omi,” He moans softly, pressing a wet kiss to his neck, “Ya always feel so fuckin’ good.”
“Yeah?” He breathes out, exhausted.
He feels the man’s hand try to fit itself between his cheek and his chest, so Atsumu lifts his head to meet his eyes.
And he looked like… he looked a lot like he was about to kiss him.
They stare at each other for a few seconds, like they’re testing the waters.
It’s Sakusa who moves first, leaning forward, his eyes fluttering close, and sighing as they get closer and closer, as if he’d been waiting his whole life for this moment.
Atsumu clenches his fists, begins to meet him halfway, for a moment, not caring whether this is the right thing to do, not thinking of anything else, surrendering to the overwhelming urge to just let this happen.
Sakusa breathes hotly against his lips. Atsumu freezes.
It’s the unmistakable strong scent of Vodka. The hairs on the back of his neck rise.
No. This isn’t right. I can’t.
At the last second, Atsumu turns away, Sakusa’s lips landing on his cheekbone instead of his lips.
For a moment, it’s like they’re suspended in time. Neither of them move, neither of them speak, both of them feeling many different things for many different reasons they couldn’t even begin to explain.
After a few seconds longer, he feels Sakusa breathe out something that sounded like sad laughter.
“Ten months too late, I guess.”
It’s not that. You don’t understand. It’s not that.
When Atsumu finally finds the courage to turn his head and meet Sakusa’s eyes, it’s almost like the man is expecting to see a different expression. Because when he sees the probably visible shame in his eyes, Sakusa looks… confused, almost.
“I’m sorry.” Atsumu whispers. He tries not to cry. “I just…”
Sakusa turns away like he can’t bear to look at him any longer. “It’s okay. I get it.”
Atsumu can recognize hurt when he sees it. He’s been the cause of it so many times before. And always to the people he cared about most.
“I’m sorry.” Atsumu says again, “I just don’t want us to ruin each other.”
There’s too much you don’t know about me that I keep praying you’ll never have to, he doesn’t say.
Strangely, Sakusa doesn’t even ask him what exactly he means by that.
It was as if he already knew. It was almost like he agreed with him. Like maybe he’d already spent too many nights thinking the exact same thing.
“Yeah.” He says instead, voice low and resigned, “Me too.”
There are a lot of things that Atsumu is scared of. Failure. Rejection. Losing any of the people he cares about. But these days, what scares him more than anything else, is the thought that maybe it just doesn’t matter anymore how hard he tries.
Maybe, they were all right and this hopelessness was all that’s going to be left of him for the rest of his life.
“So, first of all, before anything else, congratulations to the both of you! To say that the movie is a hit would be an understatement.” The interviewer says, way too bubbly for nine in the morning. “ Make It Count was nominated for Screenplay of the Year, and you two were each nominated for Outstanding Performance by a Lead Actor and Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role!”
“Thank you.” Atsumu and Sakusa accept the praise graciously, bowing the best that they can from their seats.
Atsumu still looked like he was dead inside from having to do hair and makeup at six thirty in the morning, but Sakusa couldn’t really blame him.
He was by all means a morning person and he was ridiculously grateful for the success of their movie, but if there was anything he wished didn’t come with the job, it was these fucking back to back interviews.
“This movie is… absolutely phenomenal. I’ve seen it twice and I cried like a baby both times. Your performances were outstanding.” He says, earning soft laughter and another expression of gratitude from the two actors, “I just want to know what the process was like, considering this was the first time either of you played a gay role. Was it hard? Uh, Sakusa-kun, you can answer first since this was your very first time playing the lead in a romantic film.”
Hard? I don’t know about that, but there were certainly other things that were hard. Body parts, for example.
“I think every character that I play has their own charms and own challenges that come with playing them,” Sakusa answers, playing it safe, “Rui is very… nuanced. And so, I think that more than anything else, was what made the role challenging for me.”
“Ah, I see what you’re getting at.” He nods, pretending to be interested, “And for Atsumu-kun? This isn’t your first romantic film but it is your first gay role, am I correct?”
“Uh, yeah,” Atsumu says and Sakusa can tell that he’s a little more tense now than he was in his interviews pre-hiatus, “I’ve played a lotta really difficult roles that I struggled with but Takeru, I think, wasn’t that hard for me to understand. He’s a very open person and he wears his heart on his sleeve, so it was easy to get the feel of him, ya know? I think the only hard part was havin’ to cry so damn much ‘cause that was exhaustin’, to be honest.”
Not the being gay part, is left unsaid by the both of them.
“There were some very passionate kissing scenes in there, as well.” The interview presses further on the topic, “How did you two feel about having to do that? Was it, uh… difficult to do that as well, having to kiss a fellow man?”
Oh, for fuck’s sake. Get him out of here.
Sakusa starts counting sheep in his head to calm himself down.
“I’ve done a fair amount of kissing scenes throughout the past few years.” Atsumu says, sounding significantly stiffer, “The gender of whoever I’m kissin’ doesn’t affect how I perform. Lips are lips. It makes less of a difference than one might think.”
“Same here.” Sakusa says, before the interviewer can turn the question towards him, “I don’t think it was anything either of us saw as an issue. We were playing a role that we chose to do and that’s all there was to it.”
“Alright, I see you two are truly pros! Bravo!” He exclaims, trying to act like he isn’t disappointed by their surprisingly stale answers. “But… you know, getting more into the process of the making of this film, you two were always caught hanging out and being sweet by fellow castmates and even the paparazzi! Hashtag Sakuatsu even trended a few times because of the obvious bond you two formed making this movie!”
“Right, right,” Sakusa nods, rubbing the back of his neck, “We’ve been made aware.”
Over and over again, actually.
“So, we know that those pictures in the restaurant were just you two having dinner together after work. But what was the story behind that adorable plane picture from Kageyama Tobio’s Instagram?” He asks, leaning forward, “Even holding hands and everything! Was that part of preparing for the role?”
That question, at least, seems to pull a genuine smile out of Atsumu. Sakusa’s heart does not melt a little bit at it. Not at all.
“Omi doesn’t like small planes. He was being a baby so I held his hand.”
His eye twitches in annoyance.
“I am not scared of small planes, I just have certain issues with them.” Sakusa huffs, nudging Atsumu with his elbow, “But yeah, he was… nice about it. I’m grateful for him, I guess.”
“You guess.” Atsumu teases, before turning his attention back to the interviewer. “He loves me, don’t listen to him.”
Apparently amused by their dynamic and probably proud of himself for getting them to loosen up just the slightest bit, the man seems to take this as an opening to be a fucking asshole.
“So, Atsumu-kun, everyone has been dying to know,” Oh, here they fucking go, “Is there a reason for your year-long disappearance and did your friendship with Sakusa-kun here, play a part in getting you back into the acting scene?”
Sakusa immediately locks eyes with Suna Rintarou, Atsumu’s manager, who’s behind the camera, seemingly preparing himself to put a stop to this interview.
But before he can, Atsumu takes a breath and Sakusa realizes that wow, he’s actually going to answer the question.
He doesn’t want to call it concern because absolutely fucking not, he does not care about Miya Atsumu like that anymore, but he can’t exactly say that he enjoys seeing him tense up and put on that expert smile, as he says;
“I was just having some problems in my personal life that I’d rather not go into detail about for the time being,” He says, doing his best to remain calm and professional even as his hands start to tremble, “And while Omi-kun didn’t exactly play a part in why I came back, he was someone who made it easier for me to adjust when I did, so I’m grateful for him.”
“So, just in hopes of clearing it all up: Is there any truth to the rumors that say it was due to problems in the family?” He says, rushing to ask as if he already knew he’d be asked to leave after this question, “Is that what pushed you to act out—”
“Can we just talk about the movie?” Sakusa cuts him off.
Now, he realizes this isn’t going to bode well with his reputation of being unrelentingly level-headed and professional, but Atsumu’s still as a statue next to him and they may not have spoken ever since the last time they slept together, but he doesn’t fucking like the pained look on his face.
“It’s what we’re here for, right?” He continues, expression stern.
Atsumu doesn’t look at him, but his shoulders jump just the slightest bit, the only thing that gives away his shock.
“Alright, I’ve seen enough of this.” Suna interrupts authoritatively, “Sir, can you please leave?”
The interviewer sputters. “It’s just one question, and then I’ll—”
“And your one question was part of the list of banned questions.” Suna says, unmoving in his stance. “Leave.”
It’s sort of a blur. He gets assisted out, Suna is complaining about something and so is Kiyoko, but all Sakusa can focus on is the man sitting next to him, quietly trying to pull himself together.
They haven’t been talking at all. It’s like an unspoken agreement between them that anything that isn’t work related is off limits now, so Sakusa almost decides to just let him be.
A beat passes. And then two.
But then again... you don’t have to have romantic feelings for your co-worker to be really fucking worried about their well-being, right?
“Are you okay?” Sakusa asks, without looking at him. “Be honest.”
“Yeah.” Atsumu says quietly, head still lowered, hands clenched tightly together, “Just gimme a minute.”
Sakusa has heard Atsumu say that a lot. Just give him a minute. To a lot of questions, too.
Are you ready? Just give me a minute. Are you coming or not? Just give me a minute. Can you do it? Just give me a minute. Are you okay? Like, really, are you okay? Yeah, of course, just give me a minute.
It’s such a small thing about him, something that Sakusa wasn’t sure people ever even noticed, so seemingly insignificant that he wonders if maybe he’s just reading too much into things. But there was just something about it that he really didn’t like.
Just give me a minute.
Maybe, it was just because he was a known diva. Too high-maintenance, as they always said, so he doesn’t really get it. He was more like…
Are you ready? Don’t rush me, I will be. Are you coming or not? On my own goddamn time. Can you do it? I will if I want to. Are you okay? Well, I won’t be, if you keep asking.
Miya Atsumu was supposed to be a mega-star. Leagues above him in all aspects, as much as he fucking hated to admit it. And yet, here he was and all he ever asked for from people was a minute.
It was almost like he’s scared he’d be left behind if he asked for more. Like, it’s all he thinks he can afford to ask for, at this point.
Just a minute.
Sakusa takes a deep, steadying breath, knowing that this was going to mess with the already messy, unsaid thing between them, but he does it anyway.
He reaches over to rest a hand on Atsumu’s hunched back, rubbing small circles on it, the way his mother used to do for him when he was young and crying over a lost volleyball game.
“They’re still sorting things out.” Sakusa says, voice low, “You can have at least five.”
Atsumu tenses up for half a second, before slowly relaxing a little more under Sakusa’s calming touch.
When he reaches up to massage the back of Atsumu’s neck a little bit, the man exhales, closing his eyes.
“Thank you.” He says and by the way his voice shakes, Sakusa can tell he means it.
That he truly, wholeheartedly means it.
“Yeah.” Sakusa says, “It’s nothing.”
Because it is nothing.
Why should anyone have to feel so grateful to be given five measly minutes to piece himself back together?
“Hey, Kiyoko-san,” Sakusa asks, scrolling through articles on his phone, “Before we met him… what did you know about Miya Atsumu?”
“What?” She asks, looking up from her papers. “I don’t know. I don’t think I knew much outside what everyone else already knew about him.”
“I mean like,” Sakusa’s eyes land on a particular one titled ‘MIYA ATSUMU’S HIATUS CAUSED BY ALLEGED SUBSTANCE ABUSE?’ “How true do you think all those media articles on him were?”
Kiyoko raises her eyebrows. “You’re an actor. I’m sure you know how unreliable most of them are.”
MIYA ATUMU’S HIATUS CAUSED BY ALLEGED SUBSTANCE ABUSE?
Miya Atsumu, the talented star of box office hits like The Parent Prank, Can You Touch Me, and Scream, has always had rumors and scandals following him around wherever he went, but none as serious as this. A sudden hiatus at the peak of his career. Sure, people say he’s always been a serial cheating heartbreaker who makes all the girls cry. Sure, he’s apparently been late to set one too many times. And sure, we’ve heard more than a few of the people he’s worked with say he’s a genius only when he isn’t being a piping hot mess. But all those things, you can chalk up to a teenage boy just being a teenage boy who has all the room to grow.
However, things get more serious once you hear that this is more than just a young boy who loves to party, and that his daily routine to get through a long day of work is a couple of prescription pills downed with a bottle of Vodka. A reliable source tells us that Miya Atsumu’s behavioral problems and scandals can be blamed on his heavy dependence on alcohol and drugs, things that he’d picked up shortly after his twin, Miya Osamu, had voluntarily left the industry in favor of continuing his studies, followed by the passing of someone who Miya deeply loved, his father, who had been suffering from a terminal illness. All the pressure and tragedy was too much for the young, shining actor to bear, that it eventually sent him spiraling into a dark hole of substance abuse and mental health issues.
Could this be the reason for his disappearance? No one knows for sure where he is, but some sources tell us that he’s taking this very needed time to pull himself back together. We can only hope that Miya Atsumu is privately getting whatever help he needs, so that he can return good as new, and we’ll be able to see more of this talented, young actor in the years to come.
Sakusa thinks about all those dinner parties the cast and crew had that Atsumu either didn’t come to or left early from. He thinks about how he’s never seen Atsumu with a drink in his hand, even when there’s one in everyone else’s. He thinks about the Academy Awards afterparty, about how everyone was pushing him drinks, and he wouldn’t even accept one.
Sakusa keeps thinking back to what Atsumu had said that night in the restaurant in Okinawa.
A lot of the rumors aren’t true, but not all of them are unfounded.
He isn’t sure which category this particular one falls under, but he hopes to fucking God it’s the former.
Because Atsumu’s defeated voice just keeps echoing in his head.
There’s somethin’ I never said in any of those interviews. That I was goin’ off the rails… because I was just havin’ a really fuckin’ hard time. And I didn’t know what to do.
A voice in his head tells him he needs to run.
He just doesn’t know whether it’s telling him to run away or straight on ahead.
“Kita-san, do ya have a date to the Academy Awards?” Atsumu asks the man making tea in his kitchen.
Kita hums. “I’m bringing my leading lady. Aren’t you doing the same thing?”
“My leading man, ya mean? I’m not askin’ Omi to be my fuckin’ date, that’s weird.” Atsumu points out, “For more reasons than one.”
“You guys are still weird?” Osamu questions, groaning like an old man as he plops down next to his brother on the couch. “When was the last time ya even slept together? Wasn’t it ages ago?”
“The premiere, I think.” Atsumu huffs, like he hasn’t been using that night as jerk-off material for way too long because he couldn’t fucking bring himself to sleep with anyone else, “And it ended all… weird. It’s awkward. What reason do we have to talk now that we aren’t havin’ sex?”
“I don’t know, to be friends?” Kita suggests, “To have a good relationship with your co-star who you filmed a really successful movie with?”
“Who I also used to have sex with.” Atsumu reminds him.
“So?” Kita makes a face, “I’ve done that before and it turned out perfectly okay.”
“Because you’re God .”
“I don’t get you.” Suna sighs, wriggling under Osamu’s arm to lay on his chest. “You say you don’t want a relationship with him, but you’re yearning. You’re yearning hard.”
Atsumu makes a face. “Ya know, ‘cause of how much we’re out workin’, sometimes I actually forget that yer datin’ Samu and that it’s gross. It’s nice that I forget. I wish I could forget all the time.”
Osamu and Suna stick their tongues out at him in tandem.
“And I’m not yearning.” Atsumu argues, crossing his arms. “I know damn well why we made a silent agreement to keep our relationship purely professional and I’ve completely moved on from it.”
“All yer liked videos are Make It Count and Sakuatsu FMVs.” Osamu deadpans.
“Why the fuck were ya goin’ through my iPad again?!” Atsumu yells, outraged.
“If ya want, I’ll be yer date to the Academy Awards.” Osamu says, popping a potato chip into his mouth, “It might be fun. It might gimme some more time to spend with Sunarin, too.”
Atsumu whips his head to the side. “Wait. Are ya serious?”
Osamu shrugs, like it’s nothing. “Yeah.”
It’s not nothing. Osamu hated still having the title of child star etched to his name. He hated having to be known as The Famous Miya Atsumu’s twin brother. He hated the fact that leaving showbiz hasn’t rid him of being recognized in the streets and getting asked for pictures. Osamu didn’t revel in the attention the way that Atsumu did. It’s why he left. He’d hated it. In a way, he felt traumatized by it.
Atsumu knows that Osamu’s only doing this because he knows that he’s still overwhelmed. He’s doing this because he knows that he’s scared. He’s doing this because he knows that everything is still a little too much for him. He’s doing this because Osamu feels whatever Atsumu feels, and that’s just how it’s always been. He’s only doing this for him.
Atsumu knows. They’re twins, after all.
“Ya love me.” He bites back a smile as he throws his arms around Osamu, snuggling his face into his neck, hitting Suna’s face in the process. “Yer the best.”
Osamu rolls his eyes. “Yeah, yeah, I’m the best brother in the world. Tell me somethin’ I don’t know.”
Atsumu pulls away, flashing him a grin. “Thanks, Samu. I owe ya one.”
Osamu regards him for a few seconds, like he’s trying to read him. He’s been doing that a lot.
“You’ll tell me when it gets too much again.” He says and he’s not asking, he’s demanding. “Okay, Tsumu? Because I’d do fuckin’ anythin’ for ya, y’know that, right?”
Atsumu does know. That’s why he hadn’t told him back then.
It’s ‘cause he’d do anything for him, too.
“Yeah.” He sighs, “Ya don’t needa keep thinkin’ ‘bout me anymore, Samu. Nothing’s gonna break me this time. I wouldn’t let it.”
“Neither will I.” Suna adds, booping Osamu’s nose. “So, don’t worry too much.”
Kita reappears from the kitchen, somehow carrying four mugs of tea without spilling a single drop on the floor. Half-God, half-human, confirmed.
“That’s enough celebrity talk. It’s not good for our mental health. Atsumu, do you wanna watch that new BTS variety show? I downloaded it for you.”
“Damn, Kita-san,” Atsumu says, sitting up, “I almost married ya just now.”
“Drink your tea.” He says firmly, “You need to be in perfect condition when you get up on stage soon, and accept your second Academy Film Prize.”
In an attempt to hide the sudden wave of gratitude he feels for his brother and friends for still being right next to him, even when they were there to see him at his ugliest, and there to pick up each and every one of the pieces of the mess he’d made, he only says, “‘Course. Who do ya think I am?”
He picks up his tea and pushes Sakusa Kiyoomi out of his mind. Because he has bigger things to worry about.
He still has people to make proud.
“Hair?” Sakusa asks, facing Kiyoko.
“Luscious, as always.”
He adjusts his tie. “Outfit?”
“Stupidly expensive.” She nods. “Have I stroked your ego enough? Can you stop staring at the wall because we look very weird right now.”
It’s not like this is the first time that Sakusa’s attending the Japan Academy Awards. Films he’s been in have been nominated before. He’s even been nominated before. Except, that was for Newcomer of the Year and not Outstanding Performance by a Lead Actor, so this feels pretty fucking different.
Also, Atsumu’s currently in the middle of being interviewed along with his twin who looks constipated and Sakusa’s on the verge of having a public tantrum because fuck, he looks good.
There’s also the fact that Ushijima Wakatoshi is just a few meters away from him, arm in arm with who he knew to be Tendou Satori’s older sister.
Well, that was… telling.
So, both his ex boyfriend and his could-have-been-boyfriend-if-they-didn’t-have-too-much-baggage were here. And they were going to be right there, sitting in the audience, ready to watch him potentially win or lose his category, which would be embarrassing either way.
But, he was fine. Completely fine. He says this in the tone of the this is fine dog meme.
“Incoming interviewer, twelve o’clock.” Kiyoko whispers.
Sakusa inhales, exhales, and once he turns around, he makes sure he’s the epitome of calm and professional and not a gay man yearning.
“Well, look who we have here!” The jolly interviewer says followed by her camera man, “Looking dashing in his suit and tie, the star of Make It Count, Mr. Sakusa Kiyoomi! How’re you feeling today?”
Sakusa pushes out a laugh that he hopes sounds genuine, “I’m feeling good! Nervous but good!”
I’m going to throw up, actually, thank you for asking.
“It’s your first time being nominated for such a big category, Outstanding Performance by a Lead Actor! How does that feel? Are you nervous? Got the jitters?”
“Of course, I am.” He says, “But at the same time, regardless of the results, I’m just honored to be here again and to be nominated alongside such big names.”
“ Make It Count is also nominated for Screenplay of the Year and your co-star and close friend, Miya Atsumu, is nominated for his performance as your on screen lover. What do you think? How much confidence do you have in them winning their categories?”
“Oh,” Sakusa blinks, ignoring the fact that they’d called Atsumu his close friend when they haven’t spoken in months, “Honestly, I think I have way more confidence in Atsumu winning than I do in me winning.”
It’s probably the most honest answer he’s said all day.
“Is that so?” He hears from behind him and he turns around only to meet eyes with Miya Atsumu and Miya Osamu, standing side by side.
They’re both looking at him with expressions he can’t read and Sakusa doesn’t like it.
“Yer makin’ me blush, Omi-Omi.” Atsumu teases, casually throwing an arm around him. He has to fight the urge to tense up. “Ya always were good at doin’ that.”
He’s just doing his job, Sakusa knows that. They have a dynamic full of playful banter and lowkey flirtatiousness to play up in front of the cameras.
So, he leans into the touch and rolls his eyes.
“What can I say, Miya? It isn’t my fault you keep falling for my charms.”
The interviewer squeals while Osamu makes a disgusted face.
“Should I just leave? I think I’m interrupting something.”
Sakusa may never admit this out loud, but he can at least admit it to himself, if only in his head.
He was kind of glad that they at least had an image to protect. He was relieved that they at least had this responsibility to put up an act in front of the public eye. He was grateful that this was something they had to do, to promote their film and make people believe in their bond and chemistry.
Thank fucking God, that even if it’s just for the cameras, they can keep a sliver of what they had. If it’s all they have left, then he was just gonna have to soak up every second of it.
“Well, yer just gonna have to take responsibility for that, aren’t ya?” Atsumu tosses back, turning to look at him with a playful pout.
Sakusa wants to kiss it off him.
Instead, he wraps an arm around his waist, pulls him just the tiniest bit closer, and smiles.
If this is all they have left, then he’ll just have to take what he can get.
Sakusa spends the majority of the program passing the time by talking mad shit with, shockingly, the amazingly knowledgeable Hinata Shoyo. Every single time someone goes up the stage, Hinata would motion for him and Kageyama to lean in closer, and he’d always have something to say.
You know she pretended to date that one director just to destroy him? Yeah, and she only did it so she could expose him as a pervert. She is so powerful. Hey, you know him? I saw him once in a restaurant and he doesn’t tip waiters. And he’s rude to them too! What an ass. You should always leave tips, you know? Oh, look. You know they’re together, right? Yeah! Since they filmed their first movie!
Sakusa wonders how anyone can have so much useless knowledge about celebrities, living in their head rent free. Could never be him. Kageyama seemed to be on the same boat as him, blinking at Hinata with a lost expression plastered on his face. Sakusa’s almost sure that everything Hinata’s saying is going in one ear and then coming out the other.
Just a few seats away from them, Atsumu, Osamu, and Suna whisper to each other as well, holding back bouts of laughter every few minutes. What were they even talking about? They weren’t talking shit about him, were they?
A part of Sakusa, just a very small part, feels annoyed that Atsumu hasn’t looked at him once, not even sparing him a glance, ever since they’d sat down. But he doesn’t care. Obviously, he doesn’t. He doesn’t think any of it. No thoughts, head empty.
The program drones on, Kageyama keeps yawning, Hinata hasn’t run out of tea to spill, Atsumu does not look at him, why isn’t he fucking looking at him , and then the movie Ushijima starred in wins an award because of course it does, all his movies win awards, and Sakusa just really wants this to be over because he’s not gonna win Best Lead Actor, he’s nominated alongside Kita Shinsuke, are you fucking kidding?
“And now, presenting the nominees for Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role, Yamazaki Kento and Tsuchiya Tao!”
Sakusa worked with Kento once. He made a small guest appearance on one of those live-action movies he always does. They’d barely said two sentences to each other, because Kento was sleepy and Sakusa was kind of starstruck.
He was a quiet dude, for the most part. Sakusa loved that in a man.
Also, he was a big fan of Alice in Borderland. He and Atsumu used to watch snippets of it in between takes when they were too lazy to rehearse. And sometimes in bed, when they were still too spent to get dressed or move at all.
What the fuck. Not now.
He shakes the memory out of his head.
He watches Yamazaki Kento and Tsuchiya Tao walk up onto the stage, the card with the winner for Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in hand . This isn’t even his category yet, but he already feels like he’s five seconds away from passing out. Was that normal?
From the corner of his eye, he sees Osamu reach for Atsumu’s left hand to hold onto it. On Atsumu’s right, Suna has a hand squeezing his knee as they call out his name as one of the nominees.
And Sakusa so badly wants to touch him, too.
He wonders if Atsumu still thinks about his touch as often as Sakusa thinks about his.
“And the winner is…”
Everyone holds their breaths.
“Miya Atsumu for Make It Count!”
The crowd cheers, everyone getting up from their seats to turn and clap for him. Sakusa doesn’t even feel himself standing when he does, doesn’t even realize he’s clapping too, doesn’t even realize that his eyes are getting misty.
Atsumu should be used to all this by now. You’d think so, at least. The attention, the awards, the cheers, the praise, the validation. But when Sakusa looks at him, he’s bent down in his seat, head in his hands like he just can’t bring himself to believe it. His brother is shaking him by the shoulders and yelling, Suna is filming him with the widest smile that Sakusa has ever seen on his face since he’d met him, Kita Shinsuke’s face is on the screen, looking proud and teary-eyed.
Atsumu should be used to this by now.
Yet for some reason, he looks like he’d just been given a second chance at life.
When Osamu and Suna finally manage to pull Atsumu up to his feet and hug him, he’s crying.
It isn’t even the soft, pretty crying he usually does for the cameras. He’s full on sobbing like a baby.
It’s only then that Atsumu finally, finally, looks up and meets his eyes. And it’s like everything Sakusa had tried so hard to push down for months, god, for over a year now, just comes rushing up with full force to the surface, bursting like a geyser.
Sakusa already has his arms open before Atsumu even takes a step to jump into them. His ears are ringing and his vision is blurry from all the unshed tears, and when he buries his face in Atsumu’s shoulder, everything around them just completely vanishes.
There’s nothing but that familiar warmth surrounding him, that stupid shitty cologne, and Atsumu.
Sakusa doesn’t remember the last time they’d held each other. Have they ever even done it when it wasn’t for the cameras? Have they ever even done it outside sex? Did it always feel like this?
Did holding someone in your arms always feel so much like the embodiment of relief?
“Omi.” Atsumu cries into his shoulder.
He doesn’t say anything more than a quiver of his name, because what was there to say?
“Get up there.” Sakusa manages to get out, patting Atsumu’s back harshly, “You better have a speech prepared, you lucky bastard.”
The audience keeps clapping as Atsumu makes his way to the stage, still crying like a child, while Osamu’s yelling something like, “Stop cryin’, ya idiot! Ya look so fuckin’ ugly right now!”
Atsumu gets on stage and accepts the trophy from Yamazaki Kento and Tao Tsuchiya with quick hugs for both of them, because of course they’re friends, and by the time he’s standing in front of the mic, he’s out of breath.
And still crying, like he just can’t get his shit together.
“Wow. Holy shit.” is the first thing he says, earning laughter from everyone in the audience.
“I…” He stutters, wiping his tears roughly, “I had a speech prepared and everythin’ just in case, but now that I’m up here I don’t remember a goddamn thing, I’m so sorry.”
That earns another round of laughter, even from Sakusa.
Atsumu gives himself a second to catch his breath, staring at his trophy like it’s some foreign object that he can’t comprehend. But once he starts talking again, he sounds a lot more stable.
“The more I think about this award,” He sniffs, looking out into the crowd, “— the more I realize that this doesn’t belong to me at all. Like, if I could pull a Cady Heron from Mean Girls move right now and split this trophy into several pieces, I would.”
“Not the Mean Girls reference.” Suna snorts, all the while holding his phone up to film him, exactly like Regina George’s mom during the Jingle Bell Rock performance.
“But I can’t so…” Atsumu holds it up to his head, “I dedicate this award to Ukai Keishin, for trustin’ me and believin’ in me to play this role, despite the fact that he had all the reason not to. I dedicate this award to all the cast and crew, who all worked so damn hard for this movie, and put up with me and Omi-kun bein’ such a handful all the time.”
“You better thank us for that.” Sakusa hears Ukai say from somewhere behind him, albeit said with nothing but fondness and pride.
Kageyama nods his head, strongly.
“This belongs to my family. To my dad up there,” Atsumu’s voice cracks again, “— and my mom who I know is watchin’ on TV right now, I hope I’m makin’ ya proud because I’m doin’ my best everyday. And of course, the less good-lookin’ Miya twin, who came with me tonight,”
The screen shows Osamu all teary-eyed mouthing fuck you to him.
“Yer a pain in my ass and I wish you’d stop usin’ my things without my permission all the goddamn time, but I love ya more than anyone else in the world could ever understand.” He hiccups, gasping for air before saying, “And Sunarin and Kita-san too, I love ya both, I wouldn’t still be here without ya, please never get tired of me.”
Suna doesn’t say anything, but Sakusa can tell he’s trying not to cry along with everyone.
And then taking him by surprise, Atsumu turns to look straight at him. Sakusa stops breathing.
He doesn’t even know how he manages to see it, how he feels it, even from this far.
But he knows he’s looking at him.
“And last but not the least,” He says, giving him that private smile reserved for him, that smile he only ever used to give him behind closed doors, “— to my co-star, my Rui, and my Omi-Omi.”
Sakusa clenches his fists, trying to suppress the same feeling he’s been trying to suppress for what feels like forever.
“I… am just so damn lucky for all the things I’ve received through makin’ this film, but I’m luckiest of all for gettin’ to meet someone like you.” He says, raising his trophy in the air.
“So Omi-kun, whether or not ya win yer own trophy tonight doesn’t matter, because this award, just like everythin’ else we created together makin’ this film, belongs to us .”
And Sakusa knows he isn’t just talking about the award or the recognition. He’s talking about them.
He’s talking about Okinawa, about long late nights, hot ramen, heavy rain, sea water, petty insults, shared laughter, soiled sheets, skin against skin, every touch, every word, every kiss, every sound, every memory.
Everything that belonged to them and will only ever belong to them.
Sakusa can’t stop himself from reaching up and pressing his hand against his chest in a pathetic attempt at getting rid of the borderline painful, squeezing sensation building in it.
“Livin’ my life with the entire world watchin’ has been tough, but I’ve realized that... there’s just nothing else I’d rather be doin’. Even if it’s managed to drive me halfway crazy, this place is all I know. So...”
Atsumu shrugs, takes a deep breath, and then beams at them, eyes shining so brightly that Sakusa feels like he has to look away.
“So, world! Just keep on watchin’ me! I’ll give ya guys a show you’ll never fuckin’ forget!”
God. He’s breathtaking.
The audience claps. Actors, actresses, and directors alike. And when they do, he can tell that it’s filled with a sense of respect.
No one knows what exactly Miya Atsumu had been through to get to this point, not even Sakusa. But what they did know, was that it’s really fucking hard to be young. Add being famous to that mix, then it’s just a goddamn nightmare.
All they know is that it must’ve been painful. It must’ve been agonizing. More than anything else, it must’ve been lonely. They’d all know that much. Sakusa would know that much.
And for Miya Atsumu to be in the shape he was back then, and then turn into the person standing before them right now, that alone was something that once you see, you couldn’t help but feel respect for.
In Sakusa’s opinion, Atsumu already knew that he was admired, but not that he was respected.
Respect for Atsumu, was something that Sakusa could tell he’s been working his whole life to receive, all the while not knowing that he’s already long earned it.
He can only hope that he sees it now. He hopes more than anything that he feels it now.
“Thank you!” Atsumu yells, sending flying kisses into the crowd, “Thank you so much!”
That night, Make It Count doesn’t win Screenplay of the Year and Sakusa doesn’t win his category because Kita Shinsuke does, and he’d expected that much but for the first time, he’s not thinking at all about the award or getting any more recognition than he already has. He’s received enough, even in his books.
Because right now the only thought running through his head was… how?
How? Sakusa keeps asking himself.
How was he supposed to forget about someone who lived a kind of life that demanded to be remembered?
“Atsumu! Congratulations! It’s been awhile! I’ve fucking missed you at parties, they’re no fun without you!”
“Christ, dude! Congratulations! It’s been so long since I’ve seen you or heard from you! You haven’t even been answering any texts!”
“The movie was so good, if you didn’t win, I would’ve thrown hands, for real. So, where the hell have you been?”
“Dude, we need to take a celebratory shot together. Where the hell is your drink? Come on, let’s go!”
“He’s fine, thanks.” Osamu says, pushing away the drinks his brother’s being offered. “We’ve gotta head out soon, anyway.”
What a mess.
Atsumu wasn’t supposed to be here. He was supposed to go straight home with Osamu and Suna, even Kita said he’d catch up, and they were going to celebrate by themselves with some takeout and Brooklyn 99. That was the plan.
But right after the program ended and everyone was headed straight for the mini-bar, all hell broke loose.
Atsumu never thought he’d ever experience something like this… but he was mobbed by celebrities.
It is, in many ways, a lot more terrifying than being mobbed by screaming fans and paparazzi.
“Okay,” Osamu had whispered to Suna as they were all being dragged bodily towards where all the ‘magic was happening’ apparently, “How do we get outta this?”
“Let’s just stay and converse for at least fifteen minutes so they don’t start talking and then make a run for it once they settle down.” Suna had said back, “Atsumu, are you gonna be okay?”
“Yeah.” He’d said, craning his neck, trying to look over everyone’s heads, because what else was he supposed to say, and where the fuck was Omi? “Yeah, it’s just a few minutes, I should be fine.”
Barely five minutes in and he’s decidedly not so fine. Osamu and Suna aren’t looking too good either, not used to the crowd the way that Atsumu is.
People are asking way too many questions that he doesn’t want to answer, he’s hearing words of congratulations from people he doesn’t even know, or maybe he just doesn’t remember because he’d been too out of it when he met them, and everyone’s pushing him drinks.
This was supposed to be a good day and it was a good day, he’s just overwhelmed now that’s all, and he almost wants to accept their offers.
Maybe just one drink?
He just won an Academy Prize, he deserved it, didn’t he? Maybe a glass of wine wouldn’t kill him? Or, like, just one shot of tequila—
“Atsumu.” A breathy, familiar voice calls out from behind him, pulling him out of that dangerous train of thought. He realizes belatedly that he isn’t breathing right. “You good? I’ve been looking all over for you.”
There’s an instant calm that settles over him at the mere sight of Sakusa Kiyoomi’s face. He feels an arm wrap around him, protective and steady, heightening that calmness tenfold.
“Yeah.” Atsumu says, licking his lips that he didn’t realize had gotten so dry, “Yeah, I’m… I’m good. I just… need a minute.”
For some reason, Sakusa’s face hardens at that.
“You can have more than that,” He says only loud enough for him to hear, before facing the others and saying, “Sorry, we have something important to talk about. Can I borrow him for a little while?”
Atsumu feels Osamu hold onto his wrist lightly, as if asking him a silent question of are you gonna be okay . Atsumu only nods at him, a silent I’ll be fine, I feel safe around him.
Sakusa doesn’t look at him as he drags him by the wrist away from the crowd, heading for what seemed to be one of the bathrooms. Atsumu just focuses on the warmth of his hand against his skin and starts doing what he always does to calm himself down.
“So, where are ya takin’ me, Omi? Don’t ya think that was very knight in shinin’ armor of ya?” Atsumu asks, “And I’m not gonna lie, the way yer draggin’ me like ya can’t wait to get me alone is givin’ me some really vivid flashbacks. What if they all think we’re sleepin’ together?”
Sakusa pauses. “They wouldn’t be wrong, then.”
“I guess yer right.” Atsumu breathes out a laugh. “Is that what we’re doin’ right now, Omi-kun?”
Sakusa’s grip tightens. “Why? Is that what you want us to be doing?”
Atsumu smiles weakly, even when he knows he can’t see.
“I never stop wantin’ ya, Omi.” He says, leaning in closer so he’s speaking directly against his ear, “I want ya always, however I’m allowed to have ya.”
That seems to do something to him because he starts pulling him more urgently.
“You’re not drunk, are you?” Sakusa asks quietly, making sure.
Atsumu almost laughs. “I wish I was. Maybe then, I’d feel less stupid for this.”
By the time they walk through the bathroom doors, Atsumu’s ready to pounce. He’d been ready to pounce ever since the last time they’d done this. He’d been ready to pounce the second he saw him for the first time today.
Hell, every single time they’d slept together, Atsumu’s always been ready to pounce again the second it’s over.
“C’mere, Omi,” Atsumu growls, fully about to push him into one of the stall doors, “Wanna make ya come so damn hard ya forget yer own name—”
That… was Hinata Shoyo’s voice.
Atsumu and Sakusa slowly, very slowly, turn their heads.
There’s Hinata Shoyo and Kageyama Tobio holding glasses of wine, sitting on the counter. There’s Ushijima Wakatoshi, fixing his hair. There’s Kita Shinsuke, washing his hands. And there’s Bokuto Koutarou, topless, for some reason.
Wow. Would you look at that? It’s like a gathering of Japan’s Top Actors of the Decade except they’re in an award show bathroom and they’d just heard Atsumu say the words Omi and come in the same sentence .
Kageyama turns to look at Hinata. “I told you. Boinking.”
“Congratulations. Truly!” Hinata says, like he really is proud of them.
“You two?!” Bokuto exclaims, eyes wide, “I can’t say I’m surprised but, holy shit, are you two lucky there isn’t a single straight man in this bathroom right now, because you would’ve been fuuuuuuucked. Oh, and Atsumu-kun, congrats on the win!”
Atsumu smiles weakly, still not sure if any of this is real or if he’s in a simulation.
“Atsumu, for Christ’s sake.” Kita sighs, like he’s done with all of it, “What have we said about keeping your sexual activities behind closed doors?”
“Technically, they would be behind closed doors.” Ushijima says, twisting the lid of his hair wax closed and reaching for the tissue box, “The bathroom doors, I mean.”
He then turns his attention to Sakusa and nods politely, “Kiyoomi, it’s nice to see you here. I’m glad to see you’re doing… well.”
“Oh my fucking god.” is all that comes out of Sakusa’s mouth.
Right. Suna had told him that Sakusa used to date Ushiwaka. He’d forgotten about that. Shit.
Well, this was awkward.
Atsumu doesn’t know how he’s supposed to deal with this situation. Are they supposed to explain themselves? Are they supposed to just walk straight back out? Or should they just pretend like nothing happened and start some boring conversation about work?
What actions must one take when you’re caught by top celebrities initiating a bathroom hookup with another top celebrity?
Sakusa beats him to it, walking through the door and then slamming it closed.
For a few tense seconds, nobody moves or says a word. It’s Atsumu who decides to break the silence.
He walks over to the door, knocks thrice, and says, “Elsa?”
Kita facepalms while Bokuto sings ‘do you wanna build a snowmaaaaan?’ with impressive pitch.
“Fuck you.” Sakusa answers, “Go away.”
“You missed the ‘Anna’ .” Hinata points out.
“Omi.” Atsumu tries again, more seriously now, “Ya do know you’ve locked yerself in a bathroom stall, right?”
“Fuck you.” He simply repeats.
“I mean, I was goin’ to.” He sighs, turning around to lean against the door and face the other actors, “Seriously? Why the hell are ya all here? Is this the Met Gala bathroom or somethin’? And Bokuto-san, why the fuck are ya half naked?”
“Honestly, I’ve been wondering the same thing but was too afraid to ask.” Ushijima admits.
“Well, it’s a bathroom.” Kageyama blinks. “And Hinata accidentally spilled wine on Bokuto-san’s shirt, so…”
“We felt bad and just decided to hang out with him in here!” Hinata finishes.
“This is hell.” Sakusa groans from inside the stall, “I’m in hell. Is this because when Kiyoko tried to wake me up today, I threw a pillow at her and it knocked down the crucifix mom gave me? I’m sorry, Jesus. I didn’t mean it.”
Atsumu purses his lips.
“Okay, are ya guys done here? Can ya leave us alone for a minute?”
“Sure!” Bokuto agrees easily, throwing his wet dress shirt over his shoulder, “I’ve always wanted to have an excuse to be shirtless at the Academy Awards.”
“Good luck, Atsumu-san.” Kageyama says, dragging Hinata along with him, “I hope you two work it out. I suggest you be quiet in case someone else walks in.”
Kita leans into his ear before he walks out. “Do you have condoms with you?”
“Who do ya think yer talkin’ to? I always have condoms with me.” Atsumu retorts, waving him off, “Now, go. And tell Samu and Suna that I’m alright, please.”
“Oh, I’ll tell them you’re more than alright.” Kita raises his eyebrows, “And Atsumu?”
“Congratulations.” Kita smiles, ruffling his hair, making him groan and duck down. “I’m proud of you.”
“I’ll be going now, Kiyoomi. I hope you two sort things out.” Ushijima says through the stall door, before following the other four and leaving Atsumu with a bow and a ‘congratulations’.
When they’re finally left to themselves, Atsumu turns his attention back to what’s important.
“Ya alive in there?”
“Are ya gonna come out or are ya gonna let me in?” Atsumu asks, sticking his foot under the door.
Sakusa doesn’t say anything, but he does step on it to send a message.
“Ow, ya asshole.” Atsumu hisses, pulling his foot back, “Stop bein’ a brat. We were both humiliated. We can perish together. So, are ya gonna come out or let me in? ‘Cause if ya pick neither, well, I’m just gonna have to get on my stomach and crawl under there.”
“The floor’s really fuckin’ dirty, Omi.” Atsumu adds, “And I’m gonna give ya a great big hug the second I see ya.”
The door instantly clicks open. Atsumu smiles victoriously.
He’s met with the view of Sakusa Kiyoomi folded miserably into a ball on the toilet lid. Atsumu tries not to laugh as he closes the door behind him.
“Ya look real fuckin’ stupid right now, know that?” Atsumu teases, amused, as he reaches for the trashcan and sits on the closed lid, propping his feet against the wall of the cramped bathroom stall. “This wasn’t exactly what I was picturin’ us to do be doin’ in here but, ya know, stranger things have happened, I guess.”
Sakusa remains silent, stubbornly staring at the door like it’d done him wrong. Atsumu has an idea as to why the man was acting like a child.
“So,” He starts, raising his eyebrows, “Yer ex boyfriend, huh?”
Sakusa shoots him a glare.
Atsumu raises his hands. “Hey, I’m not yer ex, why are ya takin’ it out on me? I just heard about it from Sunarin, that’s all.”
“Whatever.” Sakusa grumbles, resting his chin back on his knees, “It’s none of your business.”
Atsumu hums, drawing lazy circles on the door with his finger. He wonders if it’s okay to ask.
“Did he fuck ya over?” Atsumu asks casually without looking at him, in hopes of making him feel less pressured to answer, “Ushiwaka-kun, I mean.”
Sakusa snorts. “I don’t think Wakatoshi could ever even hurt a fly.”
Atsumu furrows his eyebrows. “I think he could slam dunk me into a basketball hoop using the strength of only two of his fingers, but sure. I guess I can believe that.”
“That’s not what I mean.” Sakusa rolls his eyes, “I mean that he’s a good person. He wouldn’t intentionally hurt anyone.”
“So did you fuck him over, then?”
“Stop phrasing it like that.” Sakusa complains, “It wasn’t like that. There was no fucking anyone over.”
“Then, why are ya actin’ like ya just saw The One That Got Away?” Atsumu questions.
“Are you gonna keep asking until I give you an answer?”
“No.” Atsumu says instantly, “If ya don’t wanna answer, ya don’t have to. I’m just curious, is all.”
Sakusa finally looks at him, regarding him with a strange look, one that Atsumu couldn’t read, but the man seems to catch sight of something he trusts in Atsumu’s expression, and decides to start talking.
“We only dated for a year. A little over three years ago. He’s the only person I’ve ever dated.” Sakusa says as a start, sighing as he unfolds himself from his fetal position, setting his feet down on the ground. “I didn’t know if I loved him. I still don’t know even now, but he was important to me. He was… comfortable. He felt safe.”
Atsumu’s been in enough relationships to know what that meant. When you’re in the spotlight for so much of your life, you tend to hang on tightly to the things that keep you grounded. The things that keep your feet planted firmly to the ground, when you spend so much time up in the clouds.
He feels an ache in his chest at the sound of Sakusa talking about a man who got to have him in all the ways that Atsumu could only ever dream about. He pointedly ignores it because it’s all he can do.
“What happened, then?” He asks.
“ That’s what happened.” Sakusa shrugs. “What happened was that I don’t think we ever really loved each other, I think we just found each other to be safe. He… he’s always had feelings for this guy, a music producer. They’ve known each other since they were teenagers. They felt the same way but couldn’t be together ‘cause the guy’s parents wouldn’t have approved of it. You know how it works for us.”
Atsumu does know. “Did they end up together anyway?”
“Eventually, yeah. He didn’t cheat on me, if that’s what you’re wondering.” He explains quickly, “He talked to me. It was a long talk. He was honest with me, he was kind, and I knew that he cared about me, in his own way, even if it wasn’t exactly love.”
Atsumu licks his lips. “So, ya weren’t in love with him… but it hurt ya, anyway?”
“It hurt but not in the way I thought it would.” Sakusa says and he doesn’t look at Atsumu as he talks, he hasn’t at all, as if he isn’t talking to a person, rather he’s just saying his thoughts out loud. “It was more like… I was heartbroken for being wrong .”
“Wrong… about how he felt for you?”
“No.” Sakusa says, “I was wrong about how I was going about life. Honestly, I think one of the main reasons I started the whole thing with him was just because I wanted to prove people wrong about me being cold and unfeeling.”
Atsumu blinks. “That is… fucked up.”
“Yeah,” Sakusa agrees easily, leaning back, his knees knocking into Atsumu’s outstretched legs, “But I did like him. Like I said, he was comfortable. I never felt like I had to try to be anyone but myself around him, you know? And that’s… nice to feel for people with jobs like ours.”
Atsumu knows that all too well. He doesn’t need to say it out loud for Sakusa to know.
“We had a lot in common and I was so sure that that’d be it. We were safe, we were stable, and it was so peaceful.” He emphasizes, “You know, I used to tell myself that I would never date a celebrity. I kept thinking that it’d probably be a mess and it’d eventually ruin the reputation I’d tried so hard to keep clean. Because when you’re dating a public figure, there’s just no running from ruin. It’s almost inevitable. But with Wakatoshi, I wasn’t worried about that at all.”
He could see that.
Ushijima Wakatoshi’s been in the industry since he was fifteen but hasn’t been caught in any scandals other than that time he had a weird feud with Oikawa Tooru. (He doesn’t know what went on there. It was like homoerotic tension to the highest degree.) But that was about it. Other than that, he seemed to be careful, quiet, and professional more than anything else.
So, that was Sakusa’s type. Atsumu should’ve seen that coming from a mile away.
“I was just so sure that we’d make it and that I had nothing to worry about.” Sakusa reminisces, “I thought I found someone who my parents would approve of despite the fact that he’s a man, someone who understood me, someone who was as goal-oriented as I was, and someone who… who would give me peace in the middle of a career that’s always so unrelentingly loud .”
He takes a deep shaky breath, “Then we broke up because he ended up with Tendou Satori and that left me feeling bad enough, but then I had to put up with seeing him everywhere I fucking went. Ads, commercials, movies, events, and award shows. And suddenly… nowhere was safe. I couldn’t escape from it. It was like… a wake up call, of some sort. Telling me that I was reaching for something so out of reach. And I just kept asking myself the same question.”
He turns to look at Atsumu, eyes desperately searching for answers. “Where the hell do we even find peace in this place?”
Suddenly, Atsumu feels a really strong urge to cry.
Sakusa’s asking him, because maybe he thinks Atsumu’s been living this life long enough to know the answer.
But that’s the problem here, wasn’t it? The fact that Atsumu has been living this life long enough, so if there was an answer to that, he should know. He should’ve found it by now.
If there was an answer to that, maybe Osamu wouldn’t have had to quit, maybe Suna wouldn’t have had to be a manager, maybe Atsumu wouldn’t have had to have a meltdown, maybe he wouldn’t have had to—
He takes a deep breath. “I don’t know, Omi. I don’t think we can.”
A tired sigh.
“Yeah.” Sakusa says, like that’s what he was expecting to hear but it sucks anyway, looking down at his lap with a somber smile, “That’s your problem too, isn’t it?”
Atsumu bites his tongue.
“Yeah.” He manages to get out.
Sakusa doesn’t have to say out loud that this was why. Neither of them ever had to say out loud why they couldn’t bring themselves to be together. Why they were stuck in this vicious cycle of wanting each other so badly, desperately holding onto whatever little they could have, because they know they can’t afford to have all of it.
It all comes down to putting their careers first before anything else. It all comes down to the fear of being each other’s downfall. It all comes down to Sakusa Kiyoomi knowing what it’s like to yearn for safety and then to get the exact opposite of it. It all comes down to... being Miya Atsumu.
“Say, Atsumu,” Sakusa calls out softly, “What about you?”
He hums. “What about me?”
There’s a weighty silence before Sakusa asks. “Why didn’t you kiss me that night?”
It all comes down to this.
“You know why.” He says simply, lowering his head. “I’m sure ya know why.”
“I don’t wanna hear it in the media’s words,” Sakusa insists, “I want to hear it from you. I want the version that’s true.”
“But that’s just it , Omi.” Atsumu says looking up, helplessly, “I don’t even have it in me to tell ya.”
I’m scared, is left unsaid. I’m scared I’m going to crack again and I’m scared you’ll be there to see it. What if I ruin us? What if I ruin you? What if I break completely this time and destroy everything in my wake?
It all comes down to this.
Sakusa Kiyoomi being in search of peace and Miya Atsumu knowing that that’s the one thing he’ll never be able to give.
For a time, neither of them talk. They sit in the cramped bathroom stall, the noise of the after party sounding so far away, as they mourn the death of a love that had never even been given the chance to begin.
“Can we at least be friends?” Atsumu asks, hopeful, his voice cracking unintentionally.
Sakusa exhales heavily, staring up at the ceiling.
“Let’s give it some time. Going from co-workers who do nothing but have sex to just being friends is a weird transition, don’t you think?” He asks, with that familiar soft smile on his face. “So that I can get some peace… and so that you can give yourself more than just a minute.”
God. That familiar smile and familiar lilt in his voice that Atsumu hopes even years from now, will only ever belong to him.
“Okay.” He sniffs, trying to get a hold of himself. “Okay, Omi-Omi.”
Suddenly, he feels a hand rest on the back of his head and the gentle press of a kiss against his forehead. He whimpers.
“Congratulations,” Sakusa whispers, “— my Takeru.”
Atsumu reaches up to hold onto Sakusa’s wrist, urging him to come closer, to stay close for just a little longer, before they say goodbye to this for good.
Sakusa hides his face in Atsumu’s hair, breathing him in, as Atsumu rests his head against the man’s knee.
And he soaks it in. They both do, in hopes that no matter how much time passes, they’ll never forget it.
After a few minutes, Sakusa breaks the silence.
“Can we fucking get out of here now?” He asks against Atsumu’s hair, “My ass is numb.”
“Thank God.” Atsumu says, “‘Cause mine is cold.”
And as they open the door, it almost feels like having to go back into a warzone after finding shelter, and Atsumu realizes that he’s sad but not broken.
Because there are certain things that are more important than whirlwind romances on beaches.
He finds himself hoping, more than anything else, that Sakusa Kiyoomi finds his peace. And that when they meet again, they can speak to each other as old friends in a place where they have all the time in the world to breathe.
“So, that’s where ya disappeared off to.” Osamu hums, playing with the head of hair lying on his lap. “You’ve had a long fuckin’ night, huh?”
Atsumu groans, turning to squish his cheek against his brother’s knee. “Why does my life have to be so dramatic? I came to act in movies, not turn my entire life into one.”
“I don’t know, but it seems to come with the job.” Kita says, “I mean, in your case, of course. Not for me. God forbid.”
“Sometimes, I look at you and think that God really isn’t fair.” Suna says from the floor, positioned between Osamu’s legs. “Like, honestly. If he was fair, then you simply would just not exist.”
“The theory is that he is God.” Atsumu points out, “Get it right.”
Kita makes a face but ignores them completely, as he always does. “How’re you feeling though, Atsumu? Really?”
Atsumu shrugs. “I dunno.”
His brother makes an annoyed sound and pokes his cheek with his pointer finger.
“What do ya mean ya don’t know? Just admit yer sad, no one here’s judgin’ ya.”
“‘Course I’m fuckin’ sad, but what am I supposed to do? Cry about it?” He argues, “It was our decision, anyway. There’s no use whinin’ about it now when it’s my own damn fault.”
It’s quiet for a little while after he says that, until Suna decides to speak up.
“I really don’t like your tone sometimes.” Suna admits, as gentle as Suna Rintarou can possibly sound, “I don’t like how you always talk like you’ve run out of chances in life.”
Atsumu looks away. “Sorry.”
Osamu squeezes his arm, silently comforting him the way he always does.
“You’ve done so well, you know.” Kita assures him. “I know we tell you all the time, but it’s true.”
It’s a weird feeling.
He’s grateful for them. He’s grateful to be so taken care of, to be so showered with affection, to be so loved, and for him to feel it all the time, because they make sure that he feels it all the time.
But it’s still weird and it’s a feeling that he can’t seem to shake off.
Because while he and Kita had always been good friends, he wasn’t always such a fixture in his life. Because while Suna has always had his back, he was the farthest thing from being protective. And while Osamu has always been Osamu and they loved each other and always have, affection wasn’t something he gave out so freely.
He wasn’t like that. They weren’t like this back then.
Atsumu recognizes that maybe the weird feeling in his chest is guilt.
For turning everything upside down. For making them all change completely just because of one terrible night.
“I almost drank, y’know.” Atsumu admits quietly, “At the afterparty last night… if Omi hadn’t dragged me away, I dunno what I would’ve tried to pull.”
“But ya didn’t.” Osamu says firmly, “Ya didn’t and that’s what matters. And we were there, weren’t we? We wouldn’t have let ya.”
“For how long?” Atsumu asks, looking up at his brother, “For how long am I gonna have to keep feelin’ like I’m fighting?”
“Tsumu…” Osamu says, pained.
“For how long am I gonna be too scared to hold onto anythin’ good, just ‘cause I’m scared that it’s gonna get bad again?”
“As long as it fuckin’ takes for ya to get back on yer feet.” Osamu insists, pulling Atsumu up and holding him by the shoulders, “As long as it takes for it to get easier to stay on ‘em. Tsumu, look at me.”
Atsumu looks up.
“Aren’t ya the one who said all that shit about givin’ the world a show and makin’ everyone proud?” He asks, making Atsumu chuckle lightly, “You’ve still got a long, long life ahead of ya. Ya can’t give up. Where the hell is yer stupidly competitive spirit right now, huh?”
Atsumu closes his eyes, letting himself breathe and reminding himself of all the things he always reminds himself of so that he can keep going.
All the people he needs to make proud. All the things he’s had to give up to get here. All the things he’s promised to himself, to his friends, to his family.
“I know.” He says, voice more firm this time, “I won’t.”
“Hey.” Osamu says, reaching up to squish Atsumu’s cheeks with one hand, “I just got my brother back, okay? Ya can’t take him from me again. I’m gonna be pissed.”
“Shtoopid.” Atsumu says, smacking Osamu’s hand away. “I know. I ain’t leavin’. As long as I keep doin’ my best, I ain’t goin’ anywhere.”
“Ya better not.” Suna grumbles. “Then, I’d be fuckin’ jobless.”
Atsumu snorts. “Of course. Of course, that’s what yer worried about.”
“They have cats to feed, Atsumu.” Kita points out. “Think of the kids.”
Atsumu sighs loudly, collapsing against the back of the couch, staring up at the ceiling with a contented smile. “Yeah. M’gonna be fine.”
Osamu leans back beside him, mirroring his position. “So, what’re ya gonna do in the meantime?”
“What the hell do ya mean what am I gonna do?” Atsumu says, motioning to untouched the pile of scripts on the coffee table, with a smug smirk. “I’m gonna get back to fuckin’ work.”
With that, Suna simply nods and turns on the TV, going back to munching on his Cheetos. “There he is. He’s back.”
Not exactly, Atsumu thinks, because this time, he’s going to be even better.
He gathers all the scripts on the table and flashes them all a wink, before turning around to head to his room. “You guys can stay. I’m gonna go get into the zone ‘n pick out the ones I like.”
The three can only watch silently as Atsumu skips into his bedroom, closing the door behind him with his foot.
“He’s changed a lot, hasn’t he?” Kita comments.
“Still cocky as ever,” Suna jokes, “— but besides that, he’s like a completely different person.”
“Yeah,” Osamu agrees, staring dazed at the chipped wood on the bathroom door, before forcing himself to look away, “Thank fucking God for that.”
Kita and Suna silently agree.
Because Atsumu may not remember much from that night, but the three of them, whether they like it or not, will have it etched in their minds for the rest of their lives.
“Have ya heard anythin’ from Atsumu?” Osamu asks Kita over the phone without so much as a greeting, trying to keep his hands from shaking and accidentally dropping the phone.
He checks the time and it’s past midnight. Kita sits up, already feeling in his gut that this was something serious.
“No, I… did something happen?” Kita asks at the sound of Osamu’s panicked breathing. “What’s wrong?”
“He hasn’t been pickin’ up his phone. We were supposed to meet up tonight for dinner and I thought he was just gonna be late like usual or maybe he fuckin’ skipped out on me, but… he at least texts.” Osamu runs a hand over his face, “Rin, can ya drive faster?”
“I’m driving the fastest that I possibly can without getting us arrested.” Suna answers, sounding just as panicked.
“Maybe he’s out drinking?” Kita tries to reason, but all the while already putting on his shoes. “Have you called his manager? His party friends?”
“His manager never knows shit.” Osamu spits out, “And I’ve asked all the people I know he hangs out with ‘n they say they haven’t talked to him.”
Oh, this is bad.
Kita slips into his jacket, not bothering to change out of his pajamas, before grabbing his car keys. “I’m closest. Want me to go check his apartment?”
Osamu lets out a sigh of relief. “Can ya? We’re on our way, but ya still might get there sooner.”
“Yeah, on my way.” Kita says, already stepping out of his door. “Stay on the phone with me.”
He hears Osamu update Suna before saying, “Thanks, Kita-san. I might just be overthinkin’ things but… I have a really bad feeling about this. It scares me.”
Kita starts his car and begins to drive. He’d never believed in the whole Twin Telepathy thing before, but meeting the Miyas changed that, completely. He’d once witnessed Atsumu sneeze, say ‘I think Samu might be gettin’ a cold’, and then have Osamu appear an hour later, sick with the flu. He’d seen Osamu complain about his knee being sore, only for Atsumu to call a few minutes later, saying he tripped in the parking lot and scraped his knee.
He trusted Osamu’s bad feeling. And if he was scared, Kita was sure he had a reason to be.
“Where are you?” Kita asks over the phone.
“We’re outside his… is that you comin’ up?”
“Yeah.” Kita says, dropping the call, getting out of his car, and running towards the two figures hopping out of their own car. “Let’s hurry.”
“Tsumu?” Osamu calls out, knocking on his door, “Hey, ya idiot. Are ya home? Why didn’t ya show up for dinner?”
“Tsumu?” He calls out louder, knocking more insistently, “Ya better not be doin’ somethin’ dumb in there. Tsumu?” He repeats and after another beat of not getting an answer, he starts fiddling with his keys.
“Hey, Atsumu, we’re coming in, alright?” Suna announces, “If you’re naked in there or something, it isn’t our fault!”
Osamu inserts the key and twists the doorknob with haste, pushing the door open.
They’re greeted with... darkness.
The apartment is quiet and still. The TV and heater turned off, the couch tidy, and the coffee table rid of any leftover food or empty bags of chips. Clean, in a way that it never is.
“He isn’t… home?” Suna observes.
Kita shakes his head, the sinking feeling in his gut getting heavier, as he motions Atsumu’s shoes by the door. “His shoes are here and… his coat and his keys are on the floor.”
“Fuck.” Osamu says shakily, “Tsumu? Tsumu?!”
The adrenaline starts pumping at that point. Osamu goes straight for the bedroom, Suna checks the guest room, while Kita heads for the kitchen.
“Atsumu?” Kita calls out, finding that the kitchen is completely spotless and empty as well. He checks the first thing he can think of checking.
He opens the liquor cabinet and finds it… bare.
How could there be nothing? This was Atsumu. He always had liquor.
He looks down and sees an empty bottle of Vodka sitting in the otherwise bare sink.
“Guys!” Suna yells at that exact moment, “The bathroom is locked! Atsumu?! Are you in there?!”
“The…” Kita stutters, before rushing to the other two at full speed, “There’s an empty bottle of Vodka in the sink.”
“What?” Osamu exclaims hysterically, trying to twist the doorknob, as he struggles to push the door open with his body. “What the fuck d’ya mean it’s empty?!”
“It’s empty. Completely empty. He might’ve...” Kita drifts off, not wanting to finish the sentence, the hair on his arms standing up, as he starts trying to help break the door down, “We have to get in there. Who knows what else he took?”
After a few more bodily slams against the door from the three of them without it budging, and without any response from the boy on the other side, Osamu snaps.
He takes a couple steps away from them.
“You two,” He warns, “Get outta the way.”
Osamu had never been that physically strong. Atsumu was always the stronger one between the two, ever since they were kids. So Kita believes that at that moment, it was probably solely the fear and adrenaline coursing through Osamu’s veins that gave him the strength to kick the door open.
Kita and Suna wince as it makes a loud noise, slamming against the bathroom wall. They look down.
Their hearts stop.
“Tsumu,” Osamu says, panicked in a way they’d never heard before, dropping to his knees with a thud. “Tsumu? Hey, hey, it’s me. It’s Samu. Tsumu?”
“Tsumu, wake up. Tsumu,” He shakes, “For fuck’s sake, come on. Tsumu?!”
“Oh my god.” Kita chokes out, as Osamu starts desperately checking for a pulse. “I’m gonna call an ambulance.”
“Tsumu, wake up.” He says, like a broken record, “Tsumu… can ya hear me?”
“I’m calling your mom.” Suna adds with a quivery voice, fumbling for his phone in his pocket, eyes unable to leave Atsumu’s unconscious body.
Of the many things that happened that night and everything that came after, the thing that remains most vivid in Kita’s memory, is the view of Osamu cradling his brother in his arms, and the sound of his voice as he begged.
“God, please, please,” Osamu sobs hysterically, rocking back and forth, pressing his ear against Atsumu’s chest, as if holding onto the boy’s faint heartbeat, “Please, I can’t do it. I won’t survive it. Don’t take him from me. Please.”
Chapter 3: Act III
Warning: Like what's mentioned in the tags, there's mentioned alcohol/drug abuse here, mentioned minor character death (the Miyas' dad), and pretty much references to an emotional breakdown.
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
Sakusa Kiyoomi, Oct. 15
Happy birthday, Atsumu.
Miya Atsumu, Oct. 15
THANK YOU OMI-KUN!!!! I hope you’re doing good!
Miya Atsumu, Nov. 3
I watched your new movie, it was really fucking good. Congratulations
Sakusa Kiyoomi, Nov. 3
Thank you, Atsumu. I’m looking forward to your future work as well.
Miya Atsumu, Dec. 24
Advanced Merry Christmas, Omi-kun!!! I hope you’re having a good time (⌒▽⌒)☆
Sakusa Kiyoomi, Dec. 25
Merry Christmas, Atsumu. I wish you and your family well.
Miya Atsumu, Jan. 1
HAPPY NEW YEAAAAAAARRRRR
Sakusa Kiyoomi, Jan. 1
Happy new year.
Sakusa Kiyoomi, Jan. 20
Congratulations on the film. You’re probably gonna get nominated so I’ll congratulate you for that now, too.
Miya Atsumu, Jan. 20
Always so kind to me, Omi-Omi. Thank you.
Miya Atsumu, Feb.8
Hey, Omi-kun how’ve you been?
An entire year passes like this. When they see each other again, it’s only because they’re both nominated for Outstanding Performance by a Lead Actor. Atsumu for his new action movie and Sakusa for his period drama. Neither of them win because Bokuto Koutarou does.
At the afterparty, they meet eyes as Sakusa takes a sip of champagne and Atsumu is in the middle of a conversation with Nakagawa Taishi. And in that moment, they know almost immediately that that’s all they can bear to do. In that moment, they know if they walk any closer or do anything more, they’re going to fall right back to where they first started.
Fall right back into Okinawa.
So instead, Atsumu smiles, Sakusa nods, and they look away.
Not yet, is what they’re saying wordlessly, I don’t think I can be so close to you without wanting to get any closer, just yet.
“Atsumu!” Suna yells from the living room, “Are you fucking coming or not?!”
“Don’t ya fuckin’ rush me!” Atsumu sasses from his bedroom, “Beauty takes time, Sunarin!”
“Some cases are hopeless.” Suna bites back, “And besides, what are you so panicked for? It’s just another screentest.”
“I don’t think ya understand.” Atsumu says, finally emerging from his bedroom, dressed particularly fancy. “I need to get this in the bag. We’re talkin’ Haiba Alisa here, Rin. If I get to work with her, it’s over for everyone.”
Suna raises an eyebrow. “What, you got a crush on her or something?”
“Are ya kiddin’ me? Everyone has a crush on her, she looks like a fuckin’ woodland fairy.” Atsumu says, like it’s obvious, “But it’s not about that. Ya know what they call her? The Lucky Charm.”
“Christ’s sake.” Suna rolls his eyes.
“No, I’m serious here.” Atsumu presses, “She barely takes any projects, but every single one she’s been in has won awards. Loads of ‘em. That movie she did with Kita-san? Remember that? Won five.”
“So you’re saying, they’re both Gods.” Suna deadpans.
Atsumu reaches for his phone, goes on Google, and shows him an IMDb picture.
There’s a long pause.
“Okay, so they’re both Gods.” Suna says, nodding. “We’re getting you this role.”
“Duh.” Atsumu says, getting into his coat. “So, who’re they considerin’ for the second lead?”
“Uh,” Suna says, suddenly showing his back to him, and pretending to arrange his things, “Well, there’s a few of them. There’s, uh… Kuroo Tetsurou.”
“Ooh, I like him.” Atsumu comments, “I worked with him once when I was, like, seventeen, and he put a blanket over me when I fell asleep on set. He’s cute.”
“There’s also Akaashi Keiji.” Suna adds.
“Oh, Bokkun’s boyfriend!” Atsumu exclaims as he slips on his shoes, “I’ve always wanted to work with him!”
“And, uh…” Suna scratches the back of his head, lowering his voice as he says, “... Sk..s.. Ky...mi.”
Suna heads straight for the door, without a single glance back. “I said, Sakusa Kiyoomi. Let’s go.”
“What?” He spews out, following behind Suna, “Ya couldn’t have opened with that?!”
“Oh, come on, Atsumu, it’s been four years since Okinawa.” Suna tries to reason, leading them to the car, “And you’ve been doing really fucking well too! You’re not… still weird about him, are you? ‘Cause Kiyoko always says that Sakusa’s doing pretty okay.”
Atsumu blinks and then realizes, well, no. He wasn’t still weird about him. A lot has happened since that day in the bathroom stall. They’ve both moved forward, continued working, filmed more movies, slept with other people, grown a lot more, and they’ve by all means, changed.
Who you are at twenty-two and who you are at twenty-six are two entirely different people, after all.
But he’d be lying if he said that he doesn’t see him onscreen sometimes and think back to those months they spent together. He’d be lying if he said that there aren’t certain nights, just some, that he lays in bed, touches himself, and his mind unconsciously drifts back to those hands, those noises, and those hazy eyes.
He wasn’t still holding onto anything, no. But he figures that this was just something that was never going to go away. This was just something that couldn’t be expunged, even when bound by the most unprofessional contract the world has ever known.
Sakusa Kiyoomi was just one of those people you can never stop wanting.
“Whatever,” Atsumu sighs, groaning as he gets into the passenger’s seat, “It’s not like we’re sure he’s gettin’ the role, anyway.”
Suna starts the car.
“And can I just say how fuckin’ weird it is that you’ve kept in touch with his manager?”
“We have double dates.” He defends. “Yachi-chan cooks really good paella, okay? Leave me alone.”
“Haiba Alisa, Kiyoomi-kun!” Kiyoko exclaims, “Do you know how big of a deal this is?”
“Of course, I know.” He says, hastily fixing his hair so that his curls fall in a precise manner over his forehead. “That recent movie she did with Kita Shinsuke got five nominations and then proceeded to win every single one of them.”
“That was the musical, right?”
Sakusa nods. “I watched the interview where she talked about that scene where she was singing while crying. The whole thing was completely live and she only had to do three takes. I feel like maybe if I get to work with her, I’ll get to absorb some of her talent. Hair?”
“Luscious, as always.”
“Outfit?” Sakusa says, twirling around slowly.
“Louis Vuitton.” She nods. “Are you good now?”
“Yeah.” He nods decidedly, exhaling loudly. “Do you know who they have their eye on to play Touma? ‘Cause I’ve been thinking that Oikawa Tooru would be a good fit. Plus, I’ve never gotten to work with him before, so it’d be a good experience.”
“Ah,” Kiyoko winces, “About that…”
Sakusa narrows his eyes.
“What’s with that face? What is it? It isn’t Bokuto, is it? ‘Cause God knows I won’t survive filming another movie with him.” He asks, uncapping his hydroflask to take a sip of water.
“Uh, no. Well,” Kiyoko takes a deep breath, “They have a few people in mind, but they’re sort of already betting on… Atsumu.”
He chokes. “What the fu—”
Kiyoko hands him a tissue.
He grabs it from her, indignantly. “And you’re only telling me this now?”
“I just didn’t think it’d matter anymore.” She defends, “You two haven’t properly spoken in years and I’ve heard from Suna-kun that Atsumu’s been doing well! And even you have to admit that you two worked together perfectly on screen.”
“I mean, we are fine,” Sakusa says, still trying to recover from accidentally snorting water out of his nose, “But…”
But what, he thinks. What was he supposed to say? They are fine, but that doesn’t mean Sakusa doesn’t still dream about him, once in a while? They are fine, but that doesn’t mean that the images of those months have left his super secret vault of jerk-off fantasies? They are fine, but that doesn’t mean that once in a blue moon, when he’s drunk mostly, he doesn’t get the urge to call him and ask if it’s too late to take back their decision?
“Fuck,” Sakusa grumbles to himself, “I don’t wanna sign another contract that has to do with him.”
“Nothing.” Sakusa sighs, “Let’s just go. It’ll be fine. It’s not like we’re a hundred percent sure we’re gonna work together, anyway.”
“So, can we all give a hand for the three talented stars who are officially leading our movie, Sky Blue, to great heights! Haiba Alisa, Miya Atsumu, and Sakusa Kiyoomi!”
Dear God, Sakusa starts to pray. Why me?
The three of them bow to all the cast and crew they’re going to have to work with for the next few months.
“It’s so nice to meet the two of you!” Alisa says cheerily, looking up at the two men standing on either side of her. “I watched Make It Count, like, five times. You guys are so good.”
“Why, thank you.” Atsumu winks, brazen as ever, “I can’t say I haven’t been lookin’ forward to meetin’ ya too. I’ve only ever heard good things.”
Sakusa fights the urge to roll his eyes and instead, bows his head slightly, giving her a polite smile.
“I’m looking forward to working with you as well, Alisa-san.”
“I’m so glad it’s the two of you I’m working with! I actually personally told the director that I’d prefer it be you two,” She explains, “Since, you know, Touma and Hiro are supposed to be best friends, so I thought it’d be the easiest for you two since you’re already so close, you know? So, you’re welcome!” She winks.
“I…” Atsumu visibly falters at this, a flicker of pure rage appearing somewhere in his eyes, before naturally going back to his cocky self. “Yes… thank you, for that.”
“Anytime!” She giggles.
Sakusa is so jealous of people who have no clue what the fuck is going on. They look so happy.
“Well,” She says, motioning back to the rest of the crew, “I’ve gotta go talk to everyone else, so I’ll leave you boys alone now.”
Sakusa simply bows, because he’s scared that if he opens his mouth, all that’ll come out is an anguished scream.
After a few seconds of tense silence, Sakusa decides that this movie wasn’t going to work out if they were awkward and it’s not like they have any bad blood so this should be fine, right?
He turns. When he does, Atsumu is already looking at him.
He’s pretty as ever.
“Long time no see, Omi-Omi.” He smiles gently. It’s the same smile as back then, but somehow even brighter. Like he’s doing better.
“Yeah.” Sakusa says, looking away because it’s all he can do to not instinctually lean into him, “How’ve you been?”
“Good.” He says, easily. “Really. How ‘bout you?”
“Good.” He returns with a nod, smiling because it’s true. “ Really. ”
Atsumu looks down at his feet, kicking at nothing, before taking a deep breath, “Say, Omi?”
“What do ya think about doin’ what we said we’d do,” He says carefully, “... and tryin’ to be friends?”
What does he think?
Sakusa tries to picture what it’d be like to be with Atsumu without all the sex, leaving him with just the talking, the laughter, the stupid jokes, the comfortable silences, and those innocent, warm touches.
What does he think? He thinks he’s only ever really known Atsumu as a fuck buddy and a co-star. So, he’s terrified to ever have to know Miya Atsumu as a friend.
Because then, what would be stopping him from falling in love?
“I think…” He swallows through the dryness in his mouth, “... that maybe it’s about time we did.”
When Atsumu flashes him that genuinely happy grin, so bright that it’s blinding, Sakusa already knows he’s done for.
“You’re paying this time.” Sakusa says the second the camera stops rolling.
“What? I paid yesterday!” Atsumu complains.
Sakusa shoots him a dirty look. “Well, that barely counts ‘cause that was just coffee. I bought us wagyu two days ago! And Alisa went with us so I paid for three! ”
“That wasn’t our deal.” Atsumu huffs stubbornly, “Our deal was that we’d take turns everyday and I paid yesterday, so today it’s yer turn.”
“Fine.” Sakusa says, shrugging as he turns around to lead the way, “But I get to choose what you’re eating. I hope you don’t mind eating nothing but soup for dinner.”
“Wha—” Atsumu sputters offendedly, “Ya wouldn’t do that! We had such a long shoot today, don’t be cruel! Omiiiiii~”
Alisa leans down to whisper into the ear of her on screen best friend, Akane Yamamoto. “They’re cute, aren’t they?”
Akane nods, following the two men with her eyes. “I thought it was just to promote that movie they did. I didn’t think they were actually close.”
“I know a real bond when I see one.” Alisa brags, “Yesterday, I even saw Atsumu-kun sitting on Kiyoomi-kun’s lap and everything during the break.”
Akane tilts her head as the two figures walk further and further away, but she still sees the way Atsumu throws an arm around the man beside him, pulling him closer, as Sakusa smiles softly at him.
He only ever really smiled like that around Miya Atsumu.
Could they be…
“I always love a good bromance.” Alisa sighs dreamily, “Their friendship is so cute.”
Akane looks up at the girl beside her, furrowing her eyebrows. “Do you not have a gaydar at all?”
“What?” She asks, confused.
“Nothing.” Akane says, turning around, leaving the poor girl lost.
Kiyoko turns to Suna and Suna turns to Kiyoko. They speak at the exact same time.
“What are we betting?” Kiyoko asks, crossing her arms.
“Picking the next location for our next double couple vacation.” Suna decides.
Kiyoko makes a smug face. “You’re on.”
Atsumu has his head resting on the arm of the couch, iPad sitting on his chest, Sakusa Kiyoomi’s head on his stomach, the rest of the man’s body caged between his slightly spread legs.
“Hey, Omi?” He calls out, “Does someone die in this anime?”
“I’m not going to spoil you.” Sakusa says boredly, without looking up from his script. “Just watch it and stop asking me questions.”
Atsumu absent-mindedly reaches down and starts running his fingers through Sakusa’s curls. He lets out a low hum of contentment.
“No, but okay,” Atsumu tries to compromise, “At least tell me if Zenitsu dies.”
“No.” Sakusa says. “Will you just keep watching?”
A beat of silence.
“Atsumuuuu.” He whines.
“What now?” Atsumu groans, “Ya told me to keep watchin’.”
“Hand.” He mumbles, reaching up to look for Atsumu’s hand, “Hair.”
Atsumu’s lips curl into a fond smile. “Yer cute, Omi-kun.”
“Hey, lovebirds,” Alisa calls from the door, “Break’s over in a few minutes, so get ready.”
“Got it, Alisa-chan!” Atsumu says, holding up an OK sign and winking at her.
Alisa sends them both a pout at the sight of their intimate position.
“You two are always being so damn cuddly without me. What’s that about? I’m supposed to be the love interest here!” She whines.
“Sorry, Alisa-san,” Sakusa says, amused, “We’ll treat you to dinner again later to make it up to you?”
“You better.” Alisa says, pointing at them, “Drinks are on you too!” She adds, before disappearing.
Sakusa looks up at Atsumu, cautiously. “Are you… okay with drinks?”
Atsumu barely even reacts. “I’m not gonna drink, but I don’t mind if you guys do. Don’t worry about that, Omi-Omi.”
He looks like he’s being honest, but a part of Sakusa still worries. He pushes the concern aside and decides to ask Suna about it later.
“You know, I have a feeling she likes you.” He says, as casually as he can.
“What, Alisa-chan?” Atsumu clarifies, raising his eyebrows. “It isn’t me she likes. I’m pretty sure she’s been crushin’ on ya.”
“No, it’s you.” Sakusa says, shaking his head. “I can tell.”
“Why does it even matter?” Atsumu teases, pinching his cheek. “Are ya feelin’ jealous, Omi-kun?”
“Bite me.” Sakusa says monotonously, swatting his hand away and sitting up, “Come on, let’s go. I’ve gotta go act like I can stand you for a few hours again.”
“Ah,” Atsumu sighs, closing his eyes, “Always makin’ me feel just how loved I am, Omi-kun.”
As they walk out the door to get back to work, their two managers stare after them with disdain.
“Really? That was disgusting.” Suna says out loud, before turning to Kiyoko, “It’s like we aren’t even here.”
“One moooonth, ” She singsongs, crossing her legs and flipping the page of her magazine, “Mountain climbing vacation~”
“You wench,” Suna grunts, sinking into the couch in despair, “Fucking mountain climbing? For fuck’s sake.”
Atsumu and Sakusa had officially chosen a new go-to hole in the wall restaurant. When they’d first walked in, the owner’s entire demeanor brightened up, and he’d went, “Kiyoomi-kun! Long time no see!” and instantly, Atsumu knew he could trust the place.
They’d stayed for almost four hours that night.
‘How’ve you been, Omi-kun?’ ‘Good. Moved to a new place, a bigger one. Closer to Komori, too. You?’ ‘I moved, too. That old apartment was too… well, it didn’t hold too many good memories. Kita-san’s only, like, two minutes away now.’ ‘Poor him.’
‘Hey, Omi-kun?’ ‘Yeah?’ ‘Did ya miss me?’ ‘I dreaded seeing you again, actually.’ ‘So, ya missed me.’ ‘Maybe a little bit.’
Atsumu wants to say it’s like nothing had changed and they went right back to being the way they were four years ago. But they didn’t. Everything had changed. And in a lot of ways, they were better.
This is the second time this week they’d come here. The last time, it was with Alisa and she’d gotten so drunk that by the end of the night, her skin was completely flushed red and she was pressing her entire being against Sakusa’s side.
Atsumu didn’t particularly enjoy that part, but he laughed anyway, if only for the uncomfortable look on the man’s face.
“So, do ya believe me now that it’s you she likes?” Atsumu asks, sending him a teasing grin through his glass of water.
“Shut up.” Sakusa grunts, shoving more meat into his mouth. “She was just being… friendly.”
“Bein’ friendly?” Atsumu repeats, “Omi, she got drunk and practically threw herself at ya.”
“She was dizzy.” He shrugs. “She needed someone to lean on for balance, that’s all.”
“She said, in verbatim, ‘You’re so pretty up close, Kiyoomi-kun’.”
“Am I not?”
“You are, but that’s—“ Atsumu drifts off, realizing what he’d just said which earns a smirk from Sakusa, “Oh, fuck you. Whatever. I can’t believe ya managed to charm Haiba Alisa. Does she even know yer gay?”
Sakusa raises his eyebrows, regarding Atsumu carefully. “I’m not, though?”
Atsumu short circuits, as his extremely vivid war flashbacks to all the positions he’s seen Sakusa in hit him like whiplash.
Sakusa snorts at the man’s confused expression before clarifying, “I mean, I’m not gay. I’m bi.”
“Oh, wow.” Atsumu says, genuinely surprised and knocking himself in the head for never having asked. “Same. I’m sorry for assumin’.”
Sakusa shakes his head nonchalantly.
“It’s fine. I’ve always kinda leaned a lot more towards men, romantically speaking. Last time I ever had feelings for a woman, I was probably in high school.”
“Who was she? A classmate?”
“My English teacher.”
“What the fuck is it with the LGBT and their English teachers?” Atsumu asks, “I’ve always wondered that.”
“I used to overshare in my essays.” Sakusa snorts. “Bless her wherever she is now. I hope she never tells the journalists about my struggle with internalized biphobia.”
“Damn, now I kinda wish I got the regular high school experience. Being home-schooled wasn’t as fun. My tutor always smelled like tangerines though, so that was nice.”
“You’re bi too, aren’t you?” Sakusa asks.
Atsumu merely hums.
“How’d you figure it out? Since you didn’t get the regular high school experience, was it like, you worked with Nishikido Ryo and Erika Sawajiri and didn’t know who you wanted more?”
“I…” Atsumu blinks rapidly, “How did ya know that?”
“You…” Sakusa pauses, bewildered, “You know what, never mind. Forget I asked. I forgot how ridiculous you are.”
Atsumu laughs, turning back to his plate of food. He doesn’t realize he’s smiling to himself until he looks up and sees Sakusa regarding him with a slightly horrified look on his face.
“Why are you smiling like that?” He asks suspiciously, “You’re scaring me.”
Atsumu ignores him.
“Y’know what, Omi?” He says, “I like this. This is nice.”
“What, the place?” Sakusa asks, looking around them. “Yeah, I’ve been a regular here ever since Komori brought me here.”
“I mean, being friends.” Atsumu clarifies, smiling gently, “We shoulda done it from the beginning, y’know?”
Sakusa would be lying if he said he hadn’t been thinking the same thing for a while now. But at the same time…
“So, does that mean you think we shouldn’t have done all that other stuff?”
Instantly, “I didn’t say that.”
“So, you wish we’d been good friends who had a lot of sex then?” Sakusa asks amusedly.
“Yeah.” Atsumu shrugs, like there’s no flaw in that statement.
“Then, isn’t that just being in a relationship?”
“Well…” Atsumu drifts off, flailing his hands, “Ugh. Whatever. Semantics.”
Sakusa snorts. “You obviously weren’t ready for us to be good friends who have a lot of sex.”
Atsumu makes a face at him. “Hey, yer the one who made me sign a fuckin’ contract.”
“Okay, so neither of us were ready. Simple as that.” Sakusa shoots back, “Probably for the better, anyway. What would my parents have said if I brought home another man? Another actor, at that.”
That makes Atsumu pause.
“Yer parents aren’t okay with it?”
“Yes and no.” He says, furrowing his eyebrows like even he finds it confusing. “They weren’t exactly happy about it, but dad was a lot more pissed about me being an actor than he was about me being gay, so that’s saying something.”
“Damn. Did they like Ushiwaka, at least?” Atsumu asks, eyes fixed on the man in front of him, scared of hearing the answer for some reason.
“They liked him as a person, but I don’t know if they liked him as my partner.” He says, slicing another piece of meat. “I don’t think they liked the idea of me dating a man when I’m bisexual. In their heads, I could just easily choose a woman and make my life easier.”
Atsumu chuckles under his breath. “I mean, if it were that simple, wouldn’t that be the fuckin’ dream?”
“And add the fact that he’s a fucking actor, too.” Sakusa groans, like he’s reliving it all. “Dad always did act like choosing to become a celebrity was like… choosing to suffer.”
There’s a meaningful silence.
“Isn’t it though, kinda?” Atsumu says.
“Maybe.” Sakusa admits, “But I always felt like there was something more to it. At first I thought it was that he didn’t want me to succeed ‘cause he’d get jealous. But then…”
“Ya told me back then that he was happy.” Atsumu remembers like it was yesterday, “He was happy that ya made it.”
“Yeah. So, I guess it’s just that… he was scared that I’d end up like him.”
Atsumu purses his lips. “An addict?”
“Not really.” Sakusa shakes his head, “Just… empty.”
Atsumu isn’t sure what to say to that or how to control his expression so that it doesn’t look pained, so he picks up his chopsticks and takes another bite.
“Ushiwaka was… safe to me, because he was the furthest thing from being a mess, you know? Like, yeah he’s a man and an actor, but he has his shit together. I mean, there’s Kita Shinsuke, I guess, but who the hell is in his league, even if he was gay?”
“Ah,” Atsumu exclaims softly, “So, since ya didn’t really see yerself with a woman, ya just wanted the next best thing that yer parents would approve of.”
Sakusa shrugs, but Atsumu knows that’s what it is. He understands it all a little more now. Sakusa couldn’t have been with him back then.
Atsumu was everything that his parents wouldn’t have wanted for him. Atsumu was probably the very reason his dad didn’t want him to date celebrities at all.
“So,” Sakusa exhales loudly, as if trying to shake the heaviness off his shoulders, “I told you too much. What about you, then?”
“Okay.” Atsumu wipes his mouth, “What do ya wanna know this time?”
“Anything you couldn’t tell me then, that you can tell me now.” Sakusa says.
There were a lot of things that Atsumu couldn’t say out loud four years ago. Things that he couldn’t even think about for too long unless he wanted to send himself spiraling into another dark hole. Thinking about those things used to leave him trembling in his own skin. It’s weird now that he thinks about it. It’s strange how everything is still so vivid in his memory, but it’s almost like he’s watching it happen to someone who isn’t him.
Still, a lot of what happened back then weren’t exactly things he could easily talk about over dinner. If not for his own sake, then for the sake of Sakusa not losing his appetite.
So, he doesn’t talk about the bad parts.
“I’ll tell ya one thing, Omi-kun,” Atsumu says, a warm smile already making its way to his lips before he’s even begun, “I was a goddamn mess... but it could’ve been worse. If I didn’t have the people I have around me, it could’ve been miles worse.”
“Because every single time it got too bad,” Atsumu sighs, nostalgic, “— somehow, they always knew. I’d be ten seconds away from doin’ somethin’ irreversible and my mom would give me a call and say she thought about me that day and decided she just wanted to hear my voice. I wouldn’t be able to get outta bed, not even to take a shower, and Suna would come knockin’ at my door tellin’ me that I better get up and that he ain’t sittin’ next to me to binge watch Hunter x Hunter if I didn’t at least try ‘n brush my teeth. I’d get into my head ‘bout how I suck at acting and everyone’s just lyin’ to me, and Kita-san would send me this long ‘congratulations on the new movie’ message, listin’ down every reason why he thought I was brilliant. And Samu—”
His voice cracks at the mere mention of his twin and he has to clear his throat, blinking the moistness he hadn’t realized was gathering in his eyes, “— it was really fuckin’ tough for the both of us when dad died, but I barely even saw him grieve because he was so worried about me. He’s always done so… I just felt so fuckin’ sorry— fuckin’ hell, ”
There’s a hand squeezing his and it’s just as comforting and grounding as it’s always been. Atsumu holds onto it, like he always has because he’s never been able to help it.
“I swear I’m fine,” He assures, taking a few deep breaths, “These aren’t… I’m only emotional ‘cause I’m grateful.”
“I know.” Sakusa says and he sounds like he means it.
“It was a really bad time.” Atsumu says. “But I’m better now.”
“I know.” He says again, rubbing his skin with his thumb.
“I like when ya hold my hand.” Atsumu admits quietly, “It always helps.”
Sakusa doesn’t look at him but he does tighten his grip. “It helped me too.”
Neither of them really need to say it out loud because they both know. But Atsumu decides to say it anyway, because he needs to hear it. He needs to make sure that Sakusa at least knows this much.
“Hey, Omi?” Atsumu says, a little tense but soft and sincere all the same, “For the record, if there wasn’t so much on our plates back then, I would’ve…”
“Yeah.” Sakusa interrupts when he drifts off, because of course he knows. “I know. Me too… for the record.”
When Atsumu looks up, Sakusa’s finally meeting his gaze. And when they look at each other, Atsumu realizes, oh.
This isn’t about sex anymore. This had nothing to do with sex. Maybe, it hasn’t even been about that for a long time now, and he just hadn’t realized.
Because he’s sitting here with this beautiful boy, and all he can think about is how if he were given the chance to be able to spend the rest of his life holding Sakusa Kiyoomi’s hand like this and never anything else, he doesn’t think he could ask for anything more.
“Samu, don’t ya think it’d be okay now?” Atsumu asks his twin over Facetime, “I mean, yeah, it’ll still be tough ‘n there are issues about us that’re never gonna go away, and there are still things he doesn’t know blah blah fuckin’ blah, but we’re older and wiser and all that. Don’t ya think it could work?”
“I dunno what the hell ya want me to say, Tsumu. I ain’t Sakusa Kiyoomi. I can’t give ya the answer yer lookin’ for.” Osamu says, “If ya really wanna go for it, then by all means, go for it. I can’t tell ya for sure though, that he isn’t gonna look at ya and be like, damn, four years later? Have ya not gotten yer dick wet since then?”
“Fuck you, it isn’t about the sex.” Atsumu says defensively, “It’s… we’re friends now, y’know? I don’t even know how it happened, it just did. And it isn’t even the weird type of friendship where I secretly wanna jump him every minute. I just like him. And I know he likes me too, y’know? I make him laugh, he can tell me things he wouldn’t tell other people, he lets down his brick walls around me… he still holds my hand.”
Osamu purses his lips.
“That has to mean somethin’, right?” Atsumu asks, but it almost sounds like he’s begging, “It isn’t too late, is it?”
“Stop askin’ me that like I have all the answers, Tsumu, I don’t.”
“Tell me, anyway.” Atsumu requests. “Even if ya don’t know it. Just tell me it’ll be fine. Tell me that I worked hard enough and that I deserve this much. Tell me it isn’t too late for me to be in love and not have it be trampled by all my emotional baggage.
“Tsumu.” He says with that steady voice of his that Atsumu could trust anytime anywhere, “Yer gonna be fine. Ya worked hard and deserve everythin’ ya want. It’s never too late for anythin’. But I also don’t want ya to get hurt.”
“Neither do I.” Atsumu admits, “But I just… don’t wanna be scared anymore, ya know? Not about this.”
Both he and his brother have changed a lot over the years, especially after that night. But the one thing that hadn’t, the one thing that never would, was the unshakable belief that as long as they have each other, nothing could ever be all that bad.
“Whatever the hell ya say, Tsumu.” Osamu never was one to promise anything that he couldn’t keep, so instead of telling him that it’s gonna be fine and that it wouldn’t go wrong, he simply says, “I’m right here, ‘kay?”
Atsumu realizes he doesn’t need to hear anything more. “I know, ya scrub.”
After a few seconds, Osamu clears his throat.
“So? How was today? Have ya figured out whether the director’s havin’ sex with that makeup artist or not?”
“Christ, ya wouldn’t believe it.” Atsumu begins his (in Osamu’s opinion) overly detailed nightly spiel, “So, we started shootin’ really early, right? And Mika-chan comes in wearin’ a fuckin’ scarf when it’s thirty degrees out, so ya just know she’s hidin’ something ‘cause she’s on to me, I tell ya. And then…”
It all happens, ironically, in the midst of filming the climax of the movie. It’s when Touma finds out that his best friend, Hiro, is in love with the same girl and things get really bad. There’s a screaming match, there’s a fist fight, there are dramatic friendship breakup speeches that are honestly inherently homosexual, so that’s been… something.
It all happens right after he’d literally just asked Kiyoko, ‘Hey, do you think Atsumu might find it weird if I bring up… Okinawa?’ and she just goes ‘Whatever you do, just make sure to do it within a month’ which was a weird answer, but he doesn’t ask. He doesn’t think he wants to know.
It blindsides him, really. It just wasn’t something he was actively thinking about. Because while they had gotten pretty close with Haiba Alisa, while she did drunkenly cling onto him one night, and while he did see where Atsumu (and Akane, now that he thinks about it) were coming from when they’d repeatedly hint to him that Alisa might have a small crush on him, he couldn’t exactly focus on that when Atsumu was always just right there. All the fucking time.
And he’s as devastating as he always is. From the way he looks, to the way he speaks and the things he speaks about, to the way he moves, to the way he dresses, to the way he touches him.
Sakusa learns the hard way that Atsumu’s touch doesn’t have to be erotic to be overwhelming and that’s deemed to be a problem.
It wasn’t so bad four years ago when Sakusa just wanted to have sex with him all the time. Now, he looks at him in the morning when he walks in for hair and makeup and the first thing that pops into his head is ‘I want to cook him breakfast’. That’s when you know there’s no going back. Dinner, you can work with. But fucking breakfast? You’re screwed.
It’s in the midst of this internal mental breakdown that Haiba Alisa hits him with that cursed question.
“Kiyoomi-kun,” She chirps, plopping next to the empty space beside him, “I’m just gonna ask you this now, since you’re always with Atsumu-kun any other time. Are you guys together?”
Sakusa chokes. He wasn’t even eating or drinking anything. He literally just starts choking on his own spit.
He coughs, eyes getting teary, “What? Where… did you hear that?”
Alisa hands him a bottle of water, which he takes. “I don’t know. I guess a lot of us just get the vibe, you know? So, are you?”
“No.” Sakusa denies quickly, squirming in his seat, “We’re, uh… we just have a unique friendship, I guess.”
He doesn’t want to explain any further, so he just hopes she picks up on the undertones and gets what it means.
“Oh… that’s great, then!” Alisa grins, turning to face him fully, “Well, in that case, would you go on a date with me sometime, then?”
This time when he chokes, he spits water all over his lap. Was she not able to translate what unique friendship meant?
Did she not know that directly translates to: ‘ We’re co-stars twice over who used to have sex and almost got together but didn’t, so now we’re just friends stuck in this weird limbo of should we or should we not?’
Alisa only blinks at him expectantly as he continues to sputter.
“So… is that a yes?”
“Are you fucking serious?” Atsumu says through gritted teeth, pulling Sakusa by the collar of his shirt. “Tell me you’re lying.”
“She isn’t your property, Touma.” Sakusa says, reaching up to grab Atsumu by the wrist in an attempt to pull his hand off him, “She gets to decide who she wants to be with. Not you. Not me. Not anyone.”
“You lying shitbag.” Atsumu spits out, pushing him and making him stumble backwards. “You spent all these months lying to my fucking face. When you were canoodling with her behind my fucking back?”
“You left her. The world doesn’t fucking revolve around you.”
And here it comes.
He braces himself as Atsumu charges forward and pretends to sock him in the face. Sakusa falls to the ground, Atsumu tackles him, and Sakusa throws a punch back, and all the while thinks about how happy they probably would have been to be able to do this kind of scene for Make It Count.
They struggle against each other, rolling around the floor, spitting profanities at each other, until they hear the director yell ‘Cut!’.
“That was so good!” He says through his voice amplifier. “Let’s go again in five.”
Instantly, they let go of each other with a tired groan. Atsumu lifts himself off him, lying on his back next to him, pillowing his head on Sakusa’s arm.
“Look at that,” Atsumu says breathily, “I guess our onscreen chemistry also applies to beatin’ each other up.”
Sakusa snorts. “Obviously. Isn’t that how we started?”
It comes so naturally, the way that Atsumu curls into Sakusa a little bit. This part, lying next to each other, panting for breath, this was familiar to them.
Granted, they were usually completely naked.
Sakusa fights the strong urge to reach up and play with the man’s hair or do something even stupider like turn his head and kiss him on the cheek. He couldn’t do that in front of everyone else and especially not right now, because…
“Atsumu? Can I ask you something?”
“Hm?” He hums questioningly with his eyes closed, giving himself a moment to relax.
“Alisa asked me out this morning.” Sakusa says. “She said she wants to go on a date.”
It takes Atsumu a beat longer than normal to respond, but when he does it’s just a teasing, “Told ya so.”
Sakusa waits for him to show any sort of negative emotion. Annoyance? Anger? Jealousy? Where was all of that now that Sakusa wanted to see it?
“What’d ya say?” Atsumu asks.
“That’s what I wanted to ask you about.” Sakusa says carefully, looking at him from the corner of his eye, “I’m… wondering. Do you think I should say yes?”
Sakusa decides on a whim.
If he tells him to say no, he’ll ask him out. If he tells him to go for it, he’ll let go for good.
“When have ya ever asked for anyone else's opinion, Omi?” Atsumu asks, narrowing his eyes at him, “Why does it matter what I think?”
“Of course, it does.” Sakusa says, “It matters to me.”
The look Atsumu gives him at those words lasts for a long time, lasts for what feels like forever, and Sakusa spends all of that time trying to understand what it means, but he can’t.
Tell me to say no. Tell me you want to be with me. One word from you and I’d say no, in a heartbeat.
Atsumu smiles, nudging his side playfully.
“She’s a great girl, ya know. Clean reputation and all.” He says softly, “I want ya to do what’ll make ya happiest in the long run.”
What the hell are you talking about? Just tell me to say no.
“So, if ya wanna say yes,” Atsumu winks at him, “— just make sure I’m gonna be a groomsman at the high coverage wedding, okay?”
In hindsight, Atsumu was right. He’d thought about it, too. Haiba Alisa was a good person, a talented actress, with a clean image. Sakusa doesn’t lean too much towards women, but if he were to fall for any woman, he wouldn’t be able to do much better than Haiba Alisa. He could like her. Maybe, given some time. She was the national sweetheart and she wanted to go out with him. He should be jumping for joy. He probably would have, if this had happened just a few years earlier.
But right now, all he feels is empty.
He swallows down the lump in his throat. “Sure. I guess I’ll update you.”
“Yeah.” Atsumu says.
“You two ready for another take?” The director yells, cutting off a conversation that Sakusa wasn’t sure was over.
Atsumu sits up abruptly, “Always!”
They spend the rest of the shoot the way they always do. Atsumu spends the rest of the day acting like nothing happened. And maybe to him, nothing had.
That night, Sakusa goes up to Alisa and simply says yes. She knows what it means. Atsumu gives him a thumbs up from the other end of the room.
This wouldn’t be the first time Sakusa had agreed to date someone out of pure convenience. He remembers a time that he thought that’s all he’d ever want to date anyone for. He wonders if it’s always felt so meaningless.
He stares at Atsumu from afar, smiling brightly as he takes a selfie with one of the makeup artists.
He feels hollow. Maybe, because he now understands what it feels like to want someone not because they’re safe, but to want them despite the fact that they aren’t.
Haiba Alisa and Sakusa Kiyoomi are all over the headlines not long after they finish filming, because of course the paparazzi catch them going on that date. They’re Haiba Alisa and Sakusa Kiyoomi.
They don’t confirm anything, but they do go as each other’s dates during the premiere and the Academy Awards, and that pretty much speaks for itself. Their movie wins three different prizes. Alisa wins Outstanding Performance by a Lead Actress and Sakusa kisses her cheek when she does. They also win Most Popular Film and Alisa holds Sakusa’s hand, then. Atsumu wins Outstanding Performance by a Lead Actor. Both Alisa and Sakusa congratulate him, giving him one-armed hugs.
Atsumu doesn’t remember what he said in his speech. In fact, he doesn’t remember winning at all. He can’t remember anything other than Alisa leaning her head against his Omi’s shoulders, and looking up at him with that same expression of awe that Atsumu knows he had on his face too once, when he first met him years ago.
During interviews, he gets asked how he feels that two of his co-stars had gotten together and what it was like watching them fall in love.
‘I’m really happy for them. I care about them both and just want them to be happy.’
Translation: Hey, Omi. Does she touch you like I do? Do you touch her like you used to touch me? Hey, Omi. Can I ask you something? Is it supposed to feel like I’m being ripped apart?
Later that night, back in his apartment where it’s safe, Osamu asks him, “Are ya really okay?”
Over the years, he’s managed to get past the point of lying just to look like he has his shit together. So instead of doing that, he’s honest.
“No.” He answers coolly, flipping through the newest script he’d gotten in the mail, “But I will be. It’s not the end of the world that he’s datin’ someone else. Besides, Omi’s only tryin’ it out. They probably won’t last that long, anyway.”
“And what if they do?” Suna asks, “What then?”
Atsumu’s fingers tighten around the paper in his hands. “I don’t know. But I’ll be okay then, too. I have to be. But ‘til then…”
He takes a deep breath and focuses on reading, “I’m just gonna get back to work.”
They see each other once a month, then it turns into once every few months, and then it turns into never at all. Sakusa’s one month with Alisa turns into two, and then six, and then a year. Atsumu often wonders if that has anything to do with it.
Miya Atsumu, Mar. 14
omi omi~ are u free
Sakusa Kiyoomi, Mar. 15
Sorry, just saw this. Maybe next time?
Miya Atsumu, Mar. 20
happy birthday omiiii!! lmk when we can hang out to celebrate!!!
Sakusa Kiyoomi, Mar. 20
Thanks! Will do.
Miya Atsumu, Apr. 9
saw the new trailer!! congrats! you were good 🤩
Sakusa Kiyoomi, Apr. 9
Thanks. Looking forward to what you have in store too.
Sakusa Kiyoomi, May 27
Congrats on the new film!
Miya Atsumu, May 27
thank you omi-omi 🤪
Miya Atsumu, June 13
are you free soon? wanna hang out?
Miya Atsumu, July 17
omiiii are you free?
Sakusa Kiyoomi, Oct. 15
Miya Atsumu, Oct. 15
It’s past midnight by the time Sakusa sees the video while he’s scrolling through Youtube. He almost doesn’t watch it. He isn’t sure how he feels about the man anymore and is too scared to find out. Being friends and nothing but friends turned out to be harder than he thought it would be. He couldn’t do it. Not when he feels like he’s cheating on his girlfriend every time he and Atsumu do literally anything.
He hesitates, but clicks on the video anyway. He pauses it before it can start playing and he goes through the comments, just so he knows what he has to prepare himself for because he always has to prepare as long as Miya Atsumu is concerned.
Miya Atsumu can crush me with his thighs and I’d thank him for it.
he always talks about Osamu with so much love i’m soft :-(
I feel so bad for him because I really feel like the media villainized him before, when he was only a kid. A kid who was going through so much behind the scenes, might I add. To this day, he’s never fully disclosed what exactly happened to him before, but I hope one day he does. He’s been doing so well these days that I wonder what the turning point was for him. He’s such a talented, well-spoken dude who actually seems like a fun person to be around. I hope he’s doing good.
Sakuatsu remains superior.
Did you guys hear how warmly he spoke of Sakusa? I’m CRYING. I LOVE THEM.
I wonder what happened with them, they used to be so close. After Sky Blue, they just stopped being seen together. People say it might have to do with Alisa.
Sakusa knows this is a bad idea. He scrolls up and presses play, anyway.
Miya Atsumu Answers The Web’s Most Searched Questions | WIRED
“Is Miya Atsumu….” He drifts off, carefully ripping the sticker off, “... single?”
“That’s not any of yer business now, is it?” Atsumu says pointedly, looking directly at the camera playfully, “But for the video’s sake, I’ll answer. Yes, I am. Not that it would benefit any of ya, anyway. Next!”
“Is Miya Atsumu… a child star? Yes, I am. I used to be in commercials and was in a famous movie with my brother when we were kids called The Parent Prank. Go watch it. Next!”
He rips off another sticker. “Is Miya Atsumu a twin? Yes, I’m a twin. I’m two minutes older than my brother, Osamu, and he’s an idiot but he’s my idiot. Next!”
“Is Miya Atsumu…” He removes the sticker slowly and once he sees the blocked portion of the question, his breath hitches. He tries not to show any tension. “... still friends with Sakusa Kiyoomi?”
Atsumu gulps down whatever it is he almost says out loud. He feels like it might be, ‘Why don’t you go and ask him?’
“Wow, I didn’t know people were still so invested in my friendship with Omi-kun.” He chuckles and hopes it sounds genuine, “Well, it’s been a long time since Make It Count . It’s been about six years now, I think? And almost two years since we did Sky Blue together with Alisa-chan. So, honestly we haven’t really been in touch these days. But…”
He takes a deep breath and smiles at the camera. “Omi will always be special to me. I’m sorry to everyone else I’ve worked with ‘cause I love all of ya, but aside from Samu who’ll always have the #1 spot, Omi’s probably my favorite co-star and my favorite of all the people I’ve ever worked with.”
“Why is that?” One of the staff asks from behind the camera.
“‘Cause he’s talented as hell, of course.” Atsumu says, “And because… wow, I don’t think I’ve ever said this anywhere. But of all the people I worked with or talked to after my hiatus, he was the only one, the only one, who didn’t ask me what happened. Even when he was the one who had the most chances to.”
Atsumu smiles and it’s melancholy as he says, “This is kind of weird to say because it’s not like we clicked instantly, y’know? Honestly, we didn’t even like each other all that much at first. But… somehow, I don’t think I ever even told him this, but he understood me more than anyone... and gave me room to breathe, without even knowing me. He gave me what I needed most during a time that I didn’t know how to ask for it. For that, I think he’s always going to be important to me.”
After he says that, Atsumu instantly coughs awkwardly, waves it off, and jokes about how he got too serious just then, before hurrying to answer the next question. But…
“Kiyoomi?” Alisa calls out softly from next to him, raising a hand to wipe under his eyes, “You’re crying.”
“Am I?” Sakusa asks, shakily raising his own hand to feel the wetness on his cheeks. “Huh. I guess I am. I wonder why.”
Alisa stares at the man next to her in bed as he stares blankly at the wall. It’s been nearly two years and it’s been two years filled with mostly good things.
Sakusa Kiyoomi is kind, patient, and secretly funny in a way not a lot of people know about. He’s considerate, he’s a good listener, he has a pretty smile, and a gentle laugh. He’s a good cook, he does chores without complaint, he makes an effort in everything he does and of course his relationships fall under that, too. Sakusa Kiyoomi was, in many ways, the best partner anyone could ever ask for.
He gives her advice, he gives her comfort, he gives her his effort, he gives her friendship, he gives her listening ears, he gives her time, he gives her moral support, he gives her a good sex life, and he gives her genuine care.
But that’s it.
And the more that she thinks about it, maybe the signs were all there from the very beginning. Even right now, when he’s lying in bed next to her, he still doesn’t look at her the way he looks at the Miya Atsumu on his phone screen.
She knows and she thinks she always has known, that of all the things he can give her and has given her, none of those things is love.
It’s never been love.
Atsumu’s watching the newest Jujutsu Kaisen episode when Bokuto sends him the link, along with a message asking, “Did you know about this?!?!?!”
Atsumu did not, in fact, know about it.
ARE WEDDING BELLS RINGING FOR SAKUSA KIYOOMI AND HAIBA ALISA? WHAT’S WITH THE DIAMOND RING?
That title caught your attention, didn’t it? Power couple of the past two years, Sakusa Kiyoomi and Haiba Alisa, actually met during the shooting of Sky Blue two years ago, that they starred in alongside fellow actor and good friend, Miya Atsumu. According to Miya, it was Haiba who started harboring a crush first and asked Sakusa out. Sakusa had then asked Miya for advice, Miya then telling him to go for it! Sakusa had taken that advice and they’ve been a solid couple ever since. Miya likes to take all the credit for it.
But this time, it seems Sakusa Kiyoomi has done some impressive romancing that he didn’t seem to need any advice for from Miya Atsumu. Haiba Alisa was spotted out today, wearing a new, never before seen diamond ring on her left ring finger. A reliable source tells us that both their families are fully supportive of their relationship and the two have been thinking about officially moving in together sometime soon, and have even started looking for houses. Is this what moving in together meant?
While we haven’t received any confirmation from the couple, we at least know that their relationship is going steady and that it doesn’t look like our beloved couple will be parting ways anytime in the future. We wish them the best of luck and the sweetest of everlasting love!
This is what leads to Atsumu grab his car keys and go for a midnight drive. He wonders if that article is as disgusting as it makes him feel or if he’s just being bitter. Probably both.
Don’t get him wrong. He doesn’t love Sakusa Kiyoomi. He doesn’t. If he did, then he’d be crying right now, right? If he did, then he wouldn’t have been able to function as well as he has the past two years. If he did, he probably would’ve cracked by now. If he loved him, then he would’ve taken that risk, years ago. He doesn’t love him.
He could’ve. He almost did. But he doesn’t.
He keeps driving, not sure where he’s headed, hands tight around the steering wheel, as he tries to keep his heart rate in check. Why is it beating so fast?
He looks at the speed meter and he realizes he’s driving past the limit. His vision starts to get hazy but he isn’t crying. At least, he doesn’t think he is. His skin starts to tingle and his breathing starts to quicken.
Wait. Where is he right now? He needs to calm down. Focus.
He hurriedly turns on the radio to get rid of the stifling quiet and is met with a radio DJ’s voice introducing a new song, apparently the OST for a recent romantic drama. A ballad. Atsumu could use a ballad right about now.
“This is an original track from the movie called The Letter, sung by Sakusa Kiyoomi himself, Dear You.”
“For fuck’s sake.” Atsumu laments, swerving so that he can stop by the side of the road. “Fucking—”
Sakusa’s low, soulful voice fills the car and Atsumu can’t focus on the fact that he didn’t even fucking know that he was the one who’d sang the OST, because he’s too focused on repeatedly punching his steering wheel and releasing a long string of swear words that he’s not sure who he’s directing to, but it’s most likely to himself.
Sakusa sings about finding true love as Atsumu’s ‘motherfucking shitting fuck’ breaks off on the last word and turns into a sob and he realizes he’s crying and that he can’t breathe. And then he gets mad about the fact that he’s sobbing and that he can’t breathe.
Why the fuck is he crying so hard? They haven’t even properly spoken in years. The last message he’d gotten from him was a measly, impersonal happy birthday. Not even an ‘enjoy your day’ or ‘I miss you.’ Just happy birthday.
And it’s not like Atsumu hasn’t tried (and failed) dating other people over the years. It’s not like Atsumu was still holding onto a sliver of hope that maybe, one day, they could be together. Was he?
Maybe a little bit.
But that doesn't matter because now, apparently he’s getting married. Apparently, he’s engaged. Apparently, he bought Haiba Alisa a diamond ring. Apparently, their families are fully supportive and they’re looking for a house. And Atsumu can’t fucking breathe.
Maybe, he should just call him. Ask him, is it true? Did you really propose? Are you marrying her? If I’d known back then, that me telling you to go for it would lead to you getting married, I wouldn’t have done it. Can I take it back? Are you happy with her? If you weren’t, you wouldn’t have proposed. I should be happy that you’re happy, but I’m not, is that wrong?
Hey, Omi. Do you think it could’ve been me?
He picks up his phone, sees his name, and almost presses the call button. The only thing stopping him is what’s left of his dignity. What would that even look like to him?
You’re newly engaged and your fuck buddy from years ago calls you crying, asking you why? It’s downright pathetic. He’s downright pathetic. He needs to calm down. He needs a drink.
Fuck. No, he doesn’t.
No, he doesn’t . He can’t even drive right now.
His hands start to shake more violently. He squeezes his eyes closed, tries to listen to Osamu’s voice in his head telling him what to do when he feels like this.
Breathe, Tsumu. Just sit for a second, try to breathe, and clear your head. If it isn’t working, call whoever’s closest.
Call whoever’s closest. He can do that.
He blinks repeatedly, trying to clear his vision and his head, and sees that he hasn’t gotten that far from home. The closest is Kita.
Your hands work, Atsumu, call his number.
It’s a struggle, but he manages to click the call button, and he realizes it’s past midnight but he’s going to pick up. He knows Kita’s going to pick up. He always does.
It only takes three rings. Atsumu tries not to audibly sigh in relief when he hears the tell-tale clicking noise.
“Atsumu?” Kita says, groggily. “Why’re you calling so late?”
It only takes hearing his voice for Atsumu to break down, completely.
“Hey Kita-san,” He hiccups, “I’m… I’m in my car. I’m near the 7/11. I can’t drive. I’m sorry. Can ya come get me?”
He hears loud rustling. “I’m on my way. Did you drink anything?”
“No.” He says, but it comes out as a sob, “I just can’t drive. Can ya come get me, please?”
“I’m coming. Stay right there, okay? Do you want me to stay on the phone with you?”
“Mmm. Can ya hurry?”
“I’m hurrying.” Kita says, panting like he really is hurrying.
“I love ya, Kita-san.” Atsumu manages to say, even in the middle of an emotional meltdown.
“I love you too.” Kita answers easily, but there’s a hint of frantic desperation in it. “I love you, so… so stay on the phone with me, okay? Atsumu?”
“I will. Don’t panic.” Atsumu sniffs, closing his eyes, already calming down slightly. “Damn, Kita-san… maybe I should’ve just fallen for you instead.”
Kita pauses on the other line. “Didn’t we decide long ago that that wouldn’t have been the best idea?”
“I know.” Atsumu says. “I just wish it was, sometimes.”
“Kita-san,” Atsumu slurs drunkenly, pressing his cheek against the boy’s shoulder, “Have I told ya… how perfect you are?”
Kita bites back a fond smile, gently ruffling the boy’s hair. “Come on, Atsumu. You’re wasted. Drink some water.”
“No,” Atsumu whines, furrowing his eyebrows, pushing the glass of water he’s being offered away, “I wanna… wanna keep bein’ drunk. Yer nicer to me when I’m drunk.”
“Because you’re whinier when you’re drunk.” Kita retorts, “And you seem to regress in age, too.”
“Jus’ around ya.” Atsumu smiles, rubbing his face against his shirt, “‘Cause yer nice to me.”
“Just around me, huh?” Kita sighs, “Well, that’s good to know ‘cause anyone else would hit you. Come on. Drink some water.”
Atsumu stubbornly harrumphs, throwing both his arms around Kita’s neck, snuggling into him.
“Atsumu,” Kita sighs, tiredly setting the water down so that he can pull the drunk boy off himself, “Get a hold of yourself. You told me you wouldn’t get this drunk. Don’t you have work tomorrow?”
“Hmmmm,” Atsumu hums into his shirt, “I do, but that’s ‘kay. I still work well even when I’m hungover, y’know? It’s a useful skill.”
“It’s not one that you should be getting used to.” Kita scolds, cupping Atsumu’s cheeks to make the boy look up at him, albeit blearily. “What’s happening with you, huh? Why are you acting like this?”
“Acting like what?” Atsumu tilts his head. “I’m… actin’ the way I always do.”
“No, you’re starting to act out again.” Kita insists, trying to hoist him up, but the boy refuses, tightening his grip around him. “I thought we already went over this. I don’t want you to fall off the wagon, Atsumu.”
“Then…” Atsumu starts, lowering one of his hands to curl around the back of Kita’s neck, “... will ya date me?”
Kita freezes, blood turning cold, suddenly. “What?”
“Don’t look at me like that.” Atsumu says quietly, staring into Kita’s eyes, “Ya know I’ve always liked ya. You just don’t wanna acknowledge it, ‘cause then that’ll mean havin’ to do somethin’ about it, right? Yer too scared to reject me, aren’t ya?”
“It’s not like that.” Kita argues.
“Then what?” Atsumu presses, “Why don’t ya wanna talk about it?”
Kita’s grip on Atsumu tightens. He looks at the boy drunkenly clinging onto him, like he’s all he can cling onto, and he knows in himself that maybe if circumstances were different, he would want to be with him.
Even right now, at this very moment, Kita stares into the boy’s clear eyes and thinks, maybe a part of him does want to be with him. Because he loves Atsumu. He’ll always love Atsumu.
It’s because he loves him so much that he doesn’t want to be with him.
“Because you don’t really love me, Atsumu. Not like that.” Kita says gently, “You’re scared and you’re trying to hold onto what’s closest and what feels safest. And that’s me.”
“That’s stupid.” Atsumu spits out, looking genuinely offended. “That’s dumb. That’s not it. If I… if I didn’t love ya… then I wouldn’t be able to do this—”
Kita knows what he’s about to do before he moves. Just as Atumu’s about to lean forward and press their lips together, Kita turns his head away, and presses Atsumu’s face into his neck. Atsumu makes a small noise into his skin.
Kita only runs a hand through his hair.
“Go to sleep, Atsumu.” He whispers, “You’ll forget about this tomorrow. Like you always do.”
Atsumu doesn’t stay awake enough to hear him finish his sentence. His head drops, cheek pressing against Kita’s shoulder, drooling onto his shirt.
The last thing he says is, ‘I… jus’ don’ wanna… be alone anymore.’
Kita fights back tears as he presses a gentle kiss into the boy’s hair.
“See?” He says quietly, to the sleeping boy who can’t hear, “Like I said… you don’t love me. Not like that.”
“Hey, Atsumu. Open the door. It’s me!”
The voice sounds muffled and far away, as if they’re underwater. It’s only when it’s accompanied by loud knocking against his car window that he realizes it’s Kita.
The feeling of relief that overcomes him is instant.
He hurriedly unlocks his door with shaky hands, opens it, and immediately throws his arms around Kita’s torso, burying his face in his stomach.
He’s crying like a baby again, but it feels less painful and more gratifying to have arms wrapped around him as he does.
“Jeez, Atsumu,” Kita sighs, pressing his lips to the top of his head while rubbing his back, “What happened to you?”
“Omi.” Atsumu replies pitifully, muffled into Kita’s jacket, “He’s getting married.”
Kita tenses. “He’s what?”
“Getting married.” Atsumu repeats, “The news said so.”
“Was it confirmed?”
“No, but…” Atsumu sniffs, “She’s wearing a diamond ring. And they haven’t denied it, either.”
“Atsumu,” Kita chides, pulling the man away from him, so he can look at his face, “You’re having a breakdown over something that isn’t even confirmed yet.”
“The thought is bad enough.” He argues, wiping his tears away and doing a sloppy job of it, “I don’t want him to get married. I don’t want him to keep being with her. I should’ve just told him to say no back then.”
Kita crouches down to meet Atsumu’s eyes. “Well. Why didn’t you, then?”
“Because I’m not… I’m not what he’s looking for.” He says, “He wants someone safe. He wants someone with a clean image and a good reputation. He wants someone his parents would want for him. He wants someone… who’ll give him peace.”
Kita squeezes both his hands in his.
“I can’t give him any of those things. I’m not any of those things. I couldn’t be even if I tried.”
“So, you’re not what he’s looking for. And you knew that, back then.” Kita repeats, “So why are you crying about it right now? Two years later?”
Atsumu pauses at that. He’s been asking himself that same question, too. He’s kept telling himself all this time, all these years, that he doesn’t love Sakusa Kiyoomi. That he couldn’t be in love with him.
“Say, Kita-san…” He says softly, “Are ya ever scared that no matter how hard ya work or how far ya go, yer still gonna be stuck in the same place for the rest of yer life, and there’s no way to escape it?”
Atsumu can almost physically hear Kita’s heart shatter just by the look on his face.
“Atsumu, you’ve already escaped.” Kita says firmly, “Look at how much you’ve done. Look at how far you’ve gotten. Look at you.”
“Yeah, look at me.” Atsumu says sarcastically, tears streaming down his face. “Cryin’ like a baby in my fuckin’ car, havin’ to call ya ‘cause I can’t drive myself home, ‘cause I’m havin’ a goddamn meltdown over a guy I’ve had feelings for for six fuckin’ years, who’s gettin’ married, ‘cause he doesn’t wanna be with me ‘cause I’m a fuckin’—” He gasps for breath, “— crazy ass child star who lost his fuckin’ marbles and landed himself in rehab—”
Kita cuts him off with a bone crushing hug.
“Stop talking like that.” He says, voice quivering in a way that it never does, “Don’t you ever talk about yourself like that, do you understand me?”
“It’s true.” Atsumu shudders against his shoulder.
“No, it’s not.” Kita says, grabbing him by the arms and gripping him so tightly that Atsumu’s sure it’ll leave bruises. “I’m only saying this once so you listen to me and get this through you fucking head, okay?”
Atsumu knows it’s real when Kita starts swearing.
“Maybe, it’s true that you messed up. You shouldn’t have turned to alcohol and you shouldn’t have turned to drugs. You should’ve talked to me, to Suna, to Osamu, especially, or to your mom. You did hurt people. And it was hard. For all of us. But, Atsumu, you were just a fucking kid.”
Atsumu’s chin wobbles and he lowers his head to gather himself.
“And when you’re a kid, everything feels like the end of the fucking world and with the things that were happening to you back then? Jesus , if those things happened to me even as a grown man, I’d probably have a breakdown too.”
“No, ya wouldn’t.” Atsumu manages a weak smile. “Yer—“
“I’m not God, Atsumu.” Kita says before he can finish his sentence. “I’m human, just like you. And that’s why I can say what a damn amazing one you are. Don’t be ashamed of yourself. It was hell, but you’re here now, aren’t you?”
He shuffles closer, cupping Atsumu’s cheek with his hand. “That was all you. You’re the one who gave yourself the chance to live again. To try again. Don’t waste it by trying to convince yourself that your life is over. Not when you worked so hard for it.”
Atsumu doesn’t know what comes over him at that moment.
A little bit of desperation, a little bit of neediness, and a whole lot of gratitude. It’s probably just because it’s been a long night and it’s probably just because he was already emotional to begin with, and that’s why he ends up leaning forward and pressing his lips against Kita’s.
The memories are unclear now, but he’s pretty sure he’s tried to kiss him before. More than once. Always when he was drunk.
Kita had never let it happen.
He lets it happen now. He doesn’t exactly reciprocate, but he doesn’t move away, either.
When Atsumu opens his eyes, he sees that Kita hadn’t even closed his. He just stares at him with an unreadable expression. It doesn’t look like shock. It just looks a lot like… love.
And slowly, Kita’s lips curl into a soft smile.
“You’ve at least finally gotten that out of your system now, huh?”
“Fuck,” Atsumu laughs breathlessly, “Shit, Kita-san, I’m sorry. I just…”
Kita shakes his head, pulling Atsumu down so that he can kiss his hair. “I know.”
Atsumu hides his face in his shoulder. “I really did love ya, y’know. It wasn’t just because I was sad.”
“Yeah.” Kita says, rubbing his back. “I know that now.”
“If I told him I loved him now, would it be too late?”
Kita purses his lips, squeezing him tighter. “I don’t know much about what happened between the two of you. But I do know that it’s wrong to insert yourself in a relationship that’s doing well.”
Atsumu groans. “I hate when yer right.”
“Then, you hate me all the time?” Kita asks, pulling away.
“Always.” Atsumu nods.
Kita examines his face for a moment, before asking, “Are you okay to drive yourself home now?”
“Yeah.” Atsumu says, sounding a lot more steady. “Can ya spend the night, though? I kinda don’t wanna be alone now ‘n everything.”
“Sure.” Kita says, ruffling his hair one last time before pulling away completely to get into the passenger’s seat. “Are you gonna be okay now?”
“I guess. Maybe, I should go on a vacation or somethin’ for a while, y’know? Go back to Okinawa ‘n just… let it go once ‘n for all.”
“That idea doesn’t sound half bad. Let Suna know. He’ll understand.”
“Thank you.” He says, sincerely.
Kita only responds by pinching his cheek. “No need for any thanks, idiot. As long as you’re okay. Let’s go.”
Atsumu thinks about how the last time he’d sobbed in his car the way he did tonight, he ended up nearly losing his life, and then landing himself in rehab at twenty years old.
Tonight, he drives himself back home with steady hands.
He wakes up the next morning with a slap to the face and the covers being violently ripped off him.
“Don’t you fucking uuugghhh me! What is this!” A voice that sounds like an upset Suna Rintarou yells.
Atsumu’s eyes blink open groggily and when they start to focus, he sees that Osamu is standing right beside his manager with his arms crossed in front of his chest, next to Kita who looks calm but deeply concerned, and that there’s a phone being held unnecessarily close to his face.
“It’s a fuckin’ mess, Tsumu.” Osamu says, “Yer both trendin’ on Twitter ‘n everythin’.”
Atsumu has a bad feeling, suddenly. He sees the title of the article and instantly bolts into a sitting position, grabbing Suna’s phone frantically.
MIYA ATSUMU AND KITA SHINSUKE CAUGHT KISSING
Yes, you read that right. Not just one, but two of the biggest child stars of our decade, Kita Shinsuke and Miya Atsumu, caught in a liplock and loving embrace just a few streets away from their homes in Minato Ward. These photos were taken just yesterday at around 1:30 in the morning! According to sources, Miya had driven to that place specifically to meet up with Kita. Once Kita arrived, they were instantly locked in an embrace. Miya looked distressed and was crying, Shinsuke seemingly comforting him.
Miya then proceeds to thank him with a… kiss.
We’ve always known that the two were close friends but who could’ve known that two of the most in-demand young actors swung that way and were in a less than platonic relationship all this time? Not us! Looks like Miya’s role in Make It Count wasn’t too far fetched from the real him. This also marks Kita Shinsuke’s first ever scandal, when he’s managed to keep his image clean for years! And to think, it’s one of this nature. We can hear girls’ hearts cracking all over the country right now. Do you think this is going to harm their chances of getting roles? Or are they much too big and much too talented to have this affect them? Leave your thoughts in the comments!
“This… isn’t looking good, guys.” Suna tells them like it is, grimacing as he looks up at them. “We need to do some damage control.”
“Kita-san…” Atsumu whispers horrified, eyes wide and fixated on the phone screen, “I’m so fuckin’ sor—“
“Don’t you dare apologize.” Kita cuts him off. “Don’t.”
“No, I shouldn’t have— I ruined everything, you’ve never even had a scandal before and I…”
“They were going to find out, eventually.” Kita assures, “If they were gonna find out against my will, I’d rather they just find out like this.”
“ Don’t . You didn’t ruin anything. It’s okay. Because this isn’t a scandal.” Kita says, “It’s just the truth.”
“Okay, but…” Osamu starts to ask, “What are ya gonna tell the media?”
Kita shrugs, looking at Atsumu. “Are you okay with telling them the truth?”
Atsumu really doesn’t think Kita should look as calm as he does. But at least his calmness keeps his own panic at bay.
“Yeah… I guess. Might as well do it now rather than deny it and then have to re-explain later. Besides, I don’t know how we can make those pictures look… not gay.”
Suna gives them both a look over before taking a deep breath and saying, “Okay. I can’t promise this won’t be a fucking disaster but if you’re both sure, I support you.”
He then turns off his manager mode for a moment to just be a friend and walks over to the both of them to give them a hug, prompting Osamu to join in.
After a few minutes of warm, comforting silence, his twin ends it in typical Osamu fashion.
“Okay, now that that discussion’s over and done with—“ He pulls away, “Can ya please tell me why in the fuck you two were kissing?”
“So, there’s a lot to unpack here.” Komori says, scrolling through the headlines with squinty eyes. “First of all, holy fuck. I didn’t know Miya Atsumu and Kita Shinsuke were a thing. How long has this been going on? Did you know?”
“No.” Sakusa says with gritted teeth and he doesn’t know why he’s so upset about this, why he’s so fucking worried about this, and why he can’t bring himself to look at the pictures for a second time, but he’d rather not unpack all that.
“Motoya-kun, I don’t think talking about this is a good idea.” Kiyoko says in a low voice. “Kiyoomi-kun, are you okay?”
Sakusa glares at her. “Why? Why are you assuming I would be anything but okay?”
“Because you’re crumpling the script in your hands.” She points out.
Sakusa looks down and the script he’d been reading is indeed damaged.
“Fuck.” He grumbles, tossing it onto the couch and curling into himself. “Whatever.”
“Wait, I’m not done.” Komori interrupts, raising a finger. “Second of all, since when were you and Alisa engaged?”
Sakusa rolls his eyes. “It’s just because of that dumb ring. I didn’t even get her that, she hates being gifted expensive stuff, ‘cause she always says she can buy them herself.”
“Ooh, we stan an independent woman.” Komori praises.
“She is.” Sakusa agrees, “But I didn’t propose.”
“Is it true that you two are looking for houses together, though?” Kiyoko asks.
“What? No, you’d be updated on that if we were.” Sakusa makes a face. “Honestly. Are you guys really going to believe anything the fucking celebrity news articles say?”
Komori raises his eyebrows.
“Funny you should say that, because who’s the one getting all bothered by Miya Atsumu and Kita Shinsuke being called a couple?”
“Well, that’s different! There are literal pictures of them kissing!” Sakusa argues.
“Aha!” Komori exclaims, “So, you admit that you’re bothered.”
Sakusa balks. “I… I didn’t admit to shit.”
“Ugh. King of Denial.”
“If you want my honest thoughts,” Kiyoko says, leaning forward seriously, “While I think that your relationship with Alisa-chan has been good for you in a way, I just don’t think I can imagine the two of you getting married.”
Sakusa fights back the urge to get upset because deep down, he agreed with her.
“You care about each other, but you’re not in love with each other.” Kiyoko points out, “Am I right in saying that?”
God, he hates her. Why does she always have to know everything?
“So? Who stays together just because they’re in love these days?” Sakusa grumbles, but doesn’t say that she’s wrong.
Kiyoko bites her bottom lip, nervously. “You know… I always thought you and Atsumu would end up together, eventually. You two felt something for each other, didn’t you?”
“Aaaand she said it.” Komori says quietly, leaning back, as if to give himself room to avoid the impending chaos.
Sakusa should be mad right now, but all he can think of saying is, yeah, I thought so too. He doesn’t say that out loud, though. He doesn’t know how to explain how exactly he feels about Miya Atsumu without sounding crazy.
Yes, I’ve been dating someone for the past two years but still, he’s stuck in my head? Yes, I’m with someone else but seeing him kiss Kita Shinsuke fucking stings anyway? Yes, I know it’s been two years, but everytime I see him it still feels like the first time? Yes, I know I said I’ve moved on from it, but it feels like my heart was left in Okinawa? Yes, he shouldn’t be my type and I know why we couldn’t be together, but a part of me still wants him, anyway.
A part of me will probably always want him.
He can’t say any of those things. Hell, he can barely even admit it to himself.
“I really did ask him what to do back then. He wasn’t just talking shit in all those interviews.” He says instead, “I told him when Alisa asked me out and asked him whether or not I should say yes.”
Kiyoko and Komori wait for him to continue.
“I decided then and there that if he said not to do it, I’d try asking him out on a real date. And if he tells me to go for it, then I’d give up on him.” He shrugs, “He told me she’s a great girl who my parents would love… and to go ahead. He was right, of course.”
He shakes his head and laughs humorlessly.
“You know, there’s this thing I do. Before I ever consider dating anyone, the first thing I do is I try to visualize a future with them. And if I don’t like what I see or if I can’t see anything at all, then I don’t waste my time.” He says, “Back then… I don’t think I was able to visualize a future for us. Nothing good, anyway. But that day, if he’d told me to say no… I would’ve listened to him. In a fucking heartbeat. Isn’t that funny?”
Komori purses his lips. “You’re an idiot.”
“Maybe.” Sakusa sighs, leaning back. “But… Alisa’s a good person. My parents like her. And he ended up with Kita Shinsuke, who’s pretty much God in human form. So, maybe Atsumu was right. Maybe, this is the best case scenario. Maybe… maybe I should really just go ahead and marry her.”
“Kiyoomi-kun,” Kiyoko says firmly, “Is that really what you want? Is that really what she would want?”
Sakusa scoffs. “It’s not about what we want. When has it ever mattered what we want?”
Komori groans loudly.
“God. What is with you two? It’s like you didn’t learn anything from Make It Count.”
One thing that Sakusa has really liked about being with Alisa was that his apartment feels fuller than it used to be. People who visited him back then always liked to complain that his place was too clean, too empty, and barely felt like a home.
Now, Alisa’s left traces of herself everywhere. The DVDs she always brings, the clothes she leaves behind, and sometimes even hours after she leaves, her scent lingers in the air and all over the couch or his sheets. She has her own toothbrush, towel, even her own assigned drawers.
Sakusa had never been in a relationship long enough for them to have their own drawers at his place.
Sakusa may not be in love with her, but Alisa had unknowingly made his home feel more lived in. Sakusa may not be in love with her, but he does care about her enough to actually like seeing her waiting for him after a long day.
And that’s something, isn’t it?
“Hello, fiance. Welcome home!” Alisa greets playfully, walking over to him and kissing his cheek. “I have to say though, I didn’t know you already proposed to me until I read the articles this morning!”
Sakusa breathes out a chuckle and closes the door behind him. “Shut up. What are you doing here so early?”
Alisa shrugs. “I knew you probably had a long day today, so I decided to prepare your dinner. Since you’re always doing it for me.”
Sakusa raises his eyebrows. “You? Cooking?”
Alisa motions to the plastic bags on the dinner table. “I bought your favorite takeout.”
“Of course, you did.” Sakusa smiles, patting her head. “Thank you.”
They eat their dinner in comfortable silence like they always do and it’s just like any other night, until Alisa clears her throat and goes, “So… today’s headlines sure were something, huh?”
Sakusa can tell just from the tone in her voice that she’s not just talking about their ‘engagement’ this time.
“I guess.” is all he offers her before eating another spoonful of rice.
“Did you know?” She asks, “About Atsumu and Kita, I mean?”
“No. Why would I?” Sakusa shoots back, “We barely even talk anymore.”
“I don’t know.” She shrugs, her gaze fixed on him even as she continues to eat, “Atsumu just seems like… he’s important to you. I just thought you’d know at least something.”
“He was just a co-star that I was close friends with, that’s—”
“Unique friendship.” Alisa says, effectively cutting him off. “That’s what you told me back then. You had a unique friendship.”
“I don’t think I thought too hard about it back then. Maybe, a part of me didn’t want to.” Alisa says, lowering her gaze to her plate. “But… you cried about him, didn’t you? Watching him talk about you?”
“That wasn’t…” Sakusa tries to deny it, but doesn’t know how to do it in a way that sounds convincing. “It isn’t because of anything like that.”
“See, you say that but I don’t think you believe it. You had feelings for him back then, didn’t you?”
“Does that matter?” Sakusa argues, visibly getting agitated. “I’ve been with you the past two years, haven’t I? We’ve been good, haven’t we? Why does it matter how I felt back then?”
“It matters because you’re shaking, Kiyoomi.” Alisa says, reaching over the table and laying her hand over his. It’s so similar to how Atsumu used to do it, but so different at the same time.
He notices that she doesn’t look or sound angry. She doesn’t even seem sad. If there’s anything that he feels from her right now, it’s only quiet understanding.
It makes him feel worse.
“Tell me.” Alisa says softly, like she’s scared that if she speaks any louder, he’ll cower. “Just… talk to me.”
Sakusa bites the insides of his cheeks.
“We both know why we’re in this relationship.” She adds, squeezing his hands tighter. “And it’s never been because of love, has it?”
He doesn’t know what it is, but something inside him starts to unravel.
He tries to speak, opens his mouth, takes a breath, but nothing comes out.
And Alisa, being the damn amazing woman that she always is, only smiles softly and kisses his knuckles.
“I’ll start then.” She says. “I started going out with you because I thought you were cute… and because I knew you’d be someone both my parents and the public approved of. Not that you didn’t already know that.”
Sakusa smirks weakly.
“And I’m simply the luckiest girl in the world, because despite coming into this with only those reasons, I ended up with someone like you.” She smiles, rubbing the back of his hand with her thumbs. “Someone who I may not be in love with, but someone I love anyway, and someone who loves me too. Because you’re my best friend who I want nothing but the best for.”
The sheer warmth in those words makes him break.
He pulls their joint hands closer, pressing a kiss to her fingers once, twice, thrice, before rubbing her hand against his cheek.
“I really do love you, you know that, right?”
“I do know, actually.” Alisa nods. “You wouldn’t have let me keep all these things in your apartment if you didn’t. You don’t even let Komori do it.”
Sakusa snorts. “I just… I just really thought this would be the best thing that I could do for myself.”
“For yourself?” Alisa repeats, “Or for everyone else?”
“Isn’t that the same thing?” He asks and Alisa can tell that it’s truly what he thinks.
“I didn’t… do relationships. I didn’t even really understand what being in love was supposed to feel like. I don’t know if I do even now. I just thought… I have to succeed, get rich, find a decent and safe person to be with, someone my parents will approve of, someone the public will approve, and therefore someone I’ll approve of.”
“That’s all my life has always been about, I think. Getting approval. Doing things and being sure I’m doing the right thing. The smart thing. Keeping my life as quiet as it can possibly be given my circumstances. I’ve had a life envisioned for myself since I was a kid and everything I’ve done so far have just been careful steps that I thought would get me there the fastest.”
“And Atsumu?” Alisa asks, “Where did he fit into that life you had envisioned?”
“That’s the thing.” Sakusa explains, frustrated, “He doesn’t. He messed it up. He distracts me. He doesn’t fit into the plan at all… but for some fucking reason, I couldn’t stop wanting him anyway.”
“Well,” Alisa smiles gently. “There you have it.”
“There I have what?”
“You know exactly what being in love feels like, Kiyoomi.” She says, “You just described it perfectly.”
Love? This was love?
Sakusa wonders, is this what love is supposed to feel like? Is it supposed to feel like destruction? Is it supposed to rip you apart from the inside out? Is it supposed to feel like an annoying itch that just never goes away? Is it supposed to come in the form of a contract you’d wanted to break the second you signed it?
Is it knowing someone’s touch, feeling it once, and spending the rest of your life praying to feel it again, even if it’s just one more time?
He looks up at Alisa with moist eyes and sees that there are tears already spilling out of hers. She’s crying and the more Sakusa looks at her, the more he sees himself.
“Can I ask you something?” Sakusa sniffs, “Are you... in love with someone too?”
There’s something poignant in the way Alisa looks at him at that moment, as she says, “He didn’t think he’d be a good fit for me.”
“Well,” Alisa sighs, directing her gaze to the wall like she can’t bring herself to look anywhere else, “He only started transitioning to male not too long ago. He said he didn’t want to ruin my relationship with my family… and ruin the career I’ve worked so hard for.”
They’d been together for two years now, but it’s only at this moment, that they both truly come to understand each other. Who they are, why they’re here, and how they’d gotten here. Two years and it’s only now that they realize that in a lot of ways, they’re really just one and the same.
Sakusa reaches out to caress her cheek, comfortingly.
“Love him, anyway.” He whispers, “No good person should believe that they don’t deserve to be loved just because of who they are.”
At that, Alisa rests her hand on top of his and looks at him, meaningfully. “Then… go , Kiyoomi.”
She leans forward over the small table to press a chaste kiss on his nose bridge, that Sakusa can tell means goodbye , “Go to him... and love him, anyway.”
“Did ya pack sunscreen?” Osamu asks, peeking into Atsumu’s travel bag, “See, ya bring some but ya always forget to put some on before ya start swimmin’.”
“What do you know? Ya haven’t even gone to the beach with me in years.” Atsumu argues.
“Don’t get fuckin’ huffy with me. Are ya sure ya packed enough clothes? Lemme check—”
“Okay, that’s it. What the hell are ya bein’ so naggy for?” Atsumu complains.
“Let him be, Atsumu.” Suna says boredly from his comfortable position in Atsumu’s bed, wrapped up in the blanket as if he owned it. “This is your first solo vacation. It is yet another first in his motherhood journey.”
“Hey, fuck you.” Osamu glares, “I’m just tryin’ to make sure he has everythin’ he needs.”
“Will ya stop worryin’ so much? How old are we?” Atsumu teases, going through his bedside drawers. “Damn. Where the hell did I put those new sunglasses I got? Samu, I swear to God if ya used them before I did—”
Osamu makes a face. “Bold of ya to assume I’d ever voluntarily wear anything you own.”
“Check the drawers in your closet.” Suna suggests, “Didn’t you rearrange a few months ago? I distinctly remember you saying something like, ‘Sunarin, this makes sense, right? Sunglasses in the closet, sex toys by my bed.’ and I was like, ‘I could’ve lived my whole life not knowing where you keep your sex toys.’ ”
“Great, now I know where he keeps his sex toys.” Osamu grieves.
“Oh, right.” Atsumu says, power walking to his walk-in closet, and then proceeding to go through the drawers. He pauses. “For some reason, there’s a polaroid of me completely naked in here. Wanna have it?”
“I’d rather die. Thank you, though.” Suna deadpans.
Atsumu snickers, filing through what seems to be mostly trash, until he sees a very familiar piece of paper, looking a lot more aged than he remembers, folded into a small square.
“Holy shit.” He says under his breath, picking it up, and slowly unfolding it to make sure his gut feeling is right.
He doesn’t know whether he feels like laughing or crying.
Miya Atsumu and Sakusa Kiyoomi’s Co-Stars With Benefits Arrangement Contract
1. The span of this arrangement will only last up to the very last day of filming. Anything past that is forbidden.
2. This arrangement will be kept top secret. For obvious reasons.
3. Absolutely no getting emotionally attached.
4. No kissing outside filming.
“So, this is the infamous fuck buddies contract, huh?” Osamu says from behind him. “You guys sure fucked that up. Ya might as well just cross everythin’ out.”
“Nah.” Atsumu breathes out a laugh, running his fingers over the paper lightly. “We managed to follow one, at least.”
“It’s not the keepin’ it top secret, is it? ‘Cause it doesn’t matter if ya didn’t technically tell anyone when you two were obvious as hell.”
“No. We’ve never kissed outside filming.” Atsumu answers.
Osamu and Suna stare at him for a few seconds and it somehow manages to translate so many different emotions.
“God.” Suna says awe-struck, “That is so fucked.”
Atsumu finally finds his Gucci sunglasses and pushes his drawer closed.
“I’m bringing this to Okinawa. Wouldn’t it be symbolic to… I don’t know, burn it by the sea? Or like, to put it in a glass bottle and send it out into the ocean?”
“How poetic of ya.” Osamu says uninterestedly, “Do whatever ya need to do. And watch yerself, alright? The media are all over you ‘n Kita-san’s asses right now.”
“And fuckin’ take—”
“— care of myself and call ya every night.” Atsumu finishes for his brother, “I will.”
Osamu pulls him by the wrist and wraps him in a tight hug.
“I’m proud of ya. It’ll be fine. Let go of whatever happened in Okinawa back then, and go ‘n make some new memories. Hear me?”
He lets go of him, “And please wear sunscreen.”
“Yes to the lettin’ go and makin’ new memories.” Atsumu nods, “And maybe to the sunscreen. No promises, though.”
Thanks to Atsumu’s disguise and by disguise he means a mask and a cap like all those k-pop idols always wear when they go to the airport, he’s only recognized three times. Twice in the airport which he’s able to get past peacefully, and then once in the plane. Funnily enough, it’s by a man whose wife starts getting airsick in the middle of the flight. In the middle of making her drink water, he turns to him and goes, ‘Oh my god! You’re Miya Atsumu!’ which Atsumu had replied to with, ‘Dude, your wife is like, dying!’
It doesn’t hit him until he’s in the car service on the way to the resort, and he’s rolling down the windows. It’s the smell of the sea and the feeling of the wind against his skin that takes him back to being twenty-two.
Is six years ago supposed to feel like an entire lifetime?
“Hey, I dunno if this is something you get often…” The driver suddenly says, the old man’s eyes examining him from the rearview mirror. “But you look a lot like that one famous actor.”
Atsumu bites back an amused smile. “I do get that a lot, actually.”
“Man,” He says, his face brightening up considerably, “I mean, if you’re gonna look like any celebrity, might as well be Miya Atsumu, don’t you think?”
“Are you a fan?” Atsumu asks, careful to speak without his Kansai dialect.
“I guess you can say that.” The driver shrugs, “I mean… I’ve pretty much seen all the guy’s movies. Make It Count was filmed here, did you know that? I think I even saw them filming from afar that year. I wanted to go and ask for an autograph but I figured it wouldn’t be nice to disrupt them when they’re working.”
“That’s very considerate of you.”
“Yes, sir.” He nods, “That movie did a lot for my family. It got my son to come out to us. He was scared I’d get upset and maybe I would’ve been, a little bit, if I hadn’t watched that movie.”
Atsumu softens. “Really?”
“Yeah, I saw how miserable those main characters were when their families wouldn’t accept them, and I told myself I would never do that to my own kids.” He says matter-of-factly, “No, sir.”
“And recently, news came out saying that Miya Atsumu and Kita Shinsuke are together, right?” He adds, “I know a lot of the media are crucifying them, but I think they should leave the poor kids alone. Those two have made a lot of people happy with their talent and that’s all that matters. Who they like to bed is nobody else’s business, in my opinion.”
Atsumu tries very hard not to start crying. Once he’s sure he won’t burst into tears on the spot, he says, “I’ll take a picture with ya if ya promise you’ll only post it after three days.”
The driver’s lips curl into a knowing smile. “You are Miya Atsumu, aren’t you?”
“Thank you.” He simply says, leaning against the window. “That… means a lot to me.”
“Keep doing what you’re doing, kid.” He says, probably in a way to comfort him with everything that’s happening, and Atsumu can’t help but hear his own father in him. “You’re doing alright.”
Atsumu didn’t realize until that very moment how much he’d been wanting to hear that from somebody. He wipes a few tears away.
When they reach their destination, they take a selfie in front of the car and say their goodbyes by hugging. And before Atsumu can roll his luggage into the lobby, the old man pauses and says;
“Hey, now that I think about it…” He starts, face scrunching up in thought, “I heard another actor arrived here just yesterday morning. He’s, uh… that guy you worked with the last time you were here, I think.”
Oh, fuck. No. No fucking way. There is no way.
“Sakusa… Kiyoomi?” The driver says, in the tone of a question. “If I’m not mistaken.”
Safe to say, Atsumu spends the rest of the day locked up in his hotel room.
What the fuck was Sakusa Kiyoomi doing in Okinawa? Isn’t he supposed to be celebrating with his fiance? Oh, god. Were they celebrating here? In fucking Okinawa? Now, that’s just cruel. This is their place and they both know it. Celebrating his engagement here would be blatant foul play.
He doesn’t have the courage to go out and eat at a restaurant. He’s too scared to even go down to the lobby and eat at the hotel buffet. So, he resorts to ordering room service for both lunch and dinner like the coward he is.
He spends most of the day staring out the window longingly, thinking about the solo vacation that could’ve been, and ranting to Osamu on the phone. To his credit, he manages to play the part of the empathetic brother for a few seconds, before he and Suna start laughing their asses off. Assholes. And to think, they were so worried about him being here on his own. They can go fuck themselves.
He scans the room and observes that it’s pretty much almost the exact same layout he remembers from six years ago. He can pick out each and every nook and cranny and point out all the places they’d had sex. Right there, against the door. Bent over on that dresser. In different positions, on the bed. Once, on top of the glass table. That was dangerous and Sakusa had told him that they’re never doing that again. (Atsumu still believes it’s just because he got all embarrassed about the ass mark he left on it.) Everywhere in the bathroom. The shower, the counter, the bathtub, not the toilet, though. (“That’s weird as hell, Atsumu. It just feels wrong.” “Yer so weird. Ya let me fuck ya in bathroom stalls outside, though.” “That’s different.” “How is it different?!”) And right here, on the couch he’s sitting on.
They also used to go over their lines together here. Sakusa would say, ‘Will you stop improvising, it confuses me!’ and he would reply with, ‘This is my forte, Omi-kun, it’s what makes me good!’ and he’d roll his eyes and go along with his improvising, anyway. He’d complain but no one Atsumu had ever worked with could go along with his improvisations the way he did.
And that lamp on the bedside table, they used to argue about turning it on or off. Atsumu would say, ‘But I wanna see yer sexy face, Omi-Omi!’ and he would of course, blush and go, ‘You’re so fucking embarrassing.’ They’d compromise and do it lights on one night and then lights off the next.
They used to wrestle a lot, too. Not even in a joking way. They’d somehow always manage to get into a mini argument in the middle of sex, usually around round two, and start pushing at each other until they’d fall off the bed. ‘Be glad the floor is carpeted. If it wasn’t, I’d punch you.’ Sakusa would say. And Atsumu would grin at him, ‘Yer all bark and no bite.’ (And then, he’d proceed to prove him wrong by leaving bite marks on his neck that would last a whole week.)
Every inch of the room reminds him of something. An argument, a joke, the sound of bickering, the sound of his laughter, the sunlight when it would hit Sakusa’s face just right and make his eyes sparkle, the hotel bathrobe he loved to wear, the taste of a shared watermelon shake, playing footsie while watching an episode of Alice in Borderland, the warmth of his hands, the curl of his hair, the two moles above his eyebrow, “Hey, Omi. Now that yer fuckin’ me, I’m not so bad, am I?” “You’re insufferable.” “Ya like me, though.” “That’s only ‘cause I’m a masochist.”
Atsumu smiles at the memory.
They could’ve been together. They wanted to be together. At least, he thinks they did. But back then, it wasn’t about what they wanted. It was about what they needed.
Sakusa needed peace. Atsumu needed time. But Atsumu couldn’t give him peace, not with the way he was, and Sakusa didn’t have time to give, not with all the things he had planned.
What is a man of chaos meant to do when he falls in love with a man of composure?
Sometimes, Atsumu thinks about it. If things had been different, like if they met at a different time and place, or if they weren’t celebrities, or if they met as the people they are right now instead of the people they were back then, would they have had a chance?
He reaches into his pocket, pulling out the contract he’s planning to get rid of. He turns it over in his hands.
“This is all yer fault. It all started with you. I signed ya and suddenly I was bound to him.” He says to the lifeless paper, “I’m gonna have to get rid of ya for good now, ‘kay?”
The contract doesn’t answer. Atsumu knows he’s losing it when he starts wishing for the ability to punch paper in the face. He looks up at the clock and sees that it’s past midnight. That’s a safe enough time for him to go out, right?
He feels the inside of his pocket to make sure his newly bought lighter is still there.
He takes a deep breath, takes one last look around the room, and decides this is it. It’s time to let go.
Sakusa isn’t sure what it is that makes him buy a ticket to Okinawa. Kiyoko had balked at his sudden announcement. After his talk with Alisa, he just figured it was the obvious thing to do. Go back to where everything started for them, think about what to do next, and he can go from there.
Go and love him anyway. That’s what she’d told him.
If only it were that simple. Maybe, if they didn’t let so much time pass, it would be. Six years since the last time he’s been here. Almost two years since the last time he and Atsumu had even met up as friends. Wouldn’t it be presumptuous of him to appear in Atsumu’s life again after everything?
Was he really with Kita Shinsuke? Did he still matter to him? Did he stand by his thought that they wouldn’t be good for each other? Would it be unfair of him to ask that he try anyway?
It’s all of those thoughts that lead him back to Okinawa. Maybe here, he’ll find what he’s looking for. Maybe here, he’ll be reminded of why they were so convinced that they were a bad idea. Maybe here, he’ll find his answers.
He looks out at the ocean and at the night sky that’s clearer than what he’s used to.
The nights here are pretty, Sakusa notices. He was never able to fully appreciate it back then. It’s quieter than most beaches are at night. The noise sounds so far away. He’d never noticed how isolated this part of the island was from everyone else. This is probably why they’d chosen to shoot here, huh.
The waves crash against his feet, the palm trees swaying gently, leaves rustling from the night breeze. Sakusa only wishes it were brighter. He can barely see the sea in front of him. It’s eerie, almost.
He and Atsumu had been out here together at night, once. It was only for the movie, though. A lot of the actual filming is blurry in his memory now, but that night is vivid.
It’s the only time he’d ever filmed in real rain. It was the first time he couldn’t stop crying after a scene. It was the first night he looked at Atsumu and realized he liked him.
Even when he’d told himself not to and even when he didn’t want to, he did anyway. He still asks himself.
What do you do when all you want is peace and you find yourself falling for someone who’s known to move and leave nothing but wreckage in his wake?
He still wonders sometimes, if it was unfair of him. He wonders if maybe they were both just making excuses, when in reality it was all just because they were scared. He wonders how much of Miya Atsumu he still doesn’t know. He wonders if he’ll ever know. He wonders if maybe they had a chance, if they still have a chance, if only they tried harder, if they took the leap, if… if.
Wow. Now, he’s hearing things.
Wait. Wait a fucking minute.
He turns his head. “Atsumu?”
Even in the dark of the night, even without any makeup on, Atsumu looks just as pretty as he does on TV. Maybe even prettier. Or, maybe that’s just Sakusa being biased. He’s holding onto a lighter and a piece of paper, for some reason. Sakusa almost laughs. He looks like an idiot.
It takes a second for it to sink in that they’re not running into each other at an award show or somewhere in the city. They’re in Okinawa.
“What the hell are you doing here?” He asks, bewildered.
“Me? I should be askin’ you.” Atsumu shoots back, sitting cross-legged beside him, but keeping his distance. “Shouldn’t ya be with yer soon to be wife?”
He can’t help but grimace a little at the reminder, turning away to face the ocean.
“What about you, then? Shouldn’t you be with Kita Shinsuke?”
Atsumu smirks. “Touchè.”
For a little while after he says that, they don’t talk. It should be awkward but it isn’t. If anything, it’s the most comfortable that Sakusa has felt in a long while. Strangely, he has a feeling that Atsumu feels the exact same way.
“How’ve you been?” Sakusa asks, hugging his legs. “Since we last saw each other?”
“Well, damn, Omi.” Atsumu chuckles breathily, glancing at him. “That’s a loaded question. Are ya ready to hear all of it?”
He finds that he not only means it, but that he’s excited to hear it, when he says, “Yeah.”
“Hmmm,” Atsumu hums, like he’s wondering where to even begin, “Ah! I’ll start with that movie I did with Bokuto ‘cause ya worked with him too, didn’t ya?”
“Oh, god.” Sakusa groans. “Don’t remind me.”
So, Atsumu does what he does best. He talks. A lot.
He goes from talking about Bokuto, to Bokuto’s boyfriend, to the family of Bokuto’s boyfriend, and then for some reason, it goes to his old makeup artist’s husband who cheated on her. Sakusa finds himself getting absorbed in all of it.
Everything about Atsumu always left him mesmerized. Even when he is just talking about adultery.
“... and that’s the story of how Terushima got chlamydia.” He finishes, “The lesson here is to always use protection, to be loyal, and to get checked as frequently as you can. Right, Omi-Omi?”
“I can’t believe I just listened to all of that.” Sakusa says, a little terrified of himself.
Atsumu snickers, before heaving out a contented sigh. “It’s weird, isn’t it? It’s been so long but it doesn’t feel like it’s been that long at all. Just like comin’ home from a long vacation, don’t ya think?”
Sakusa agrees but just like always, he doesn’t need to say it out loud for Atsumu to know.
“How about the more recent times, though?”
“Kita Shinsuke.” He brings up, finally. “I kinda wanna hear about that.”
Atsumu raises his eyebrows, like he’s testing him. “Do ya really, though?”
Sakusa doesn’t play into it, staying silent. Atsumu relents.
“We’re not together.” He clarifies, resting his chin on his raised knee. “We did kiss… obviously. But, it wasn’t like that. We’re not like that.”
“Then, what are you like?” Sakusa asks.
Atsumu purses his lips, arranging his thoughts before saying them out loud.
“I used to like him back then. Pre-hiatus. But, we wouldn’t have worked out. Not with the way I was. So we just stayed friends. That night was just… not a great night for me. He was there. That’s all that happened.”
Sakusa goes over it in his head.
“You used to like him but it wouldn’t have worked out, not with the way you were…” Sakusa repeats, “You’ve been saying that exact sentence for a long time now, huh?”
“Hey, fuck you.” Atsumu shoots back, “It wasn’t just me. You didn’t think we’d be good together either.”
“I didn’t say anything about us.” Sakusa says, defensively.
“We both know what ya were tryin’ to say.”
They’re quiet again for a moment. And Sakusa decides to ask the question that’s probably been plaguing both their minds the past hour, more than the hundreds of questions they already had.
“Why are you here, Atsumu?” He turns his head, looking him straight in the eye, “Why are you back in Okinawa?”
Atsumu inhales, exhales, and then looks at him.
Sakusa doesn’t know what the look on his face means. It looks sad but it also looks… serene.
Serene in a way that Atsumu never was back then.
He slowly unfolds the paper in his hands, handing it to Sakusa. “This.”
Sakusa has to squint his eyes a little. Once he sees what exactly it is, his breath hitches. “You still have that?”
Atsumu stares at it, fondly. “I was surprised to find it too. I forgot I even took it with me when I moved.”
Sakusa’s eyes go over the rules he’d written himself that he hasn’t read in years, and their two signatures at the bottom.
“We sure messed that up, huh?”
“Everything but one.” Atsumu points out. “Even after everything that happened… we never did kiss outside filming, did we?”
Sakusa isn’t sure whether he feels proud or upset about it.
“What does the contract have to do with why you’re here?” He asks.
Atsumu holds out a blue lighter with his other hand. “I was gonna burn it here. I wanted it to be in this place where it all started for us. So, I could officially let ya go ‘n everythin’. I’ve been havin’ a little trouble doin’ that the past few years, but I just thought it’s about time.”
Sakusa tries not to look like he has his heart stuck in his throat. “You’ve had trouble letting me go?”
Atsumu smiles at him, but it looks resigned. “Pathetic ain’t it, Omi-kun?”
Pathetic. Maybe. Sakusa would know. He’s been in the exact same place. And now, Atsumu’s telling him he’s finally letting him go.
He’s… letting him go?
“Why?” Sakusa can’t stop himself from asking.
“What the hell do ya mean why?” Atsumu scoffs, “Yer engaged, aren’t ya? And besides… it’s stupid to keep holdin’ on to those memories. It’s stupid when we’ve always known we wouldn’t be good for each other.”
“Why wouldn’t we?”
“Omi.” Atsumu gives him a pointed look, “Yer askin’ some real stupid questions right now. It’s not like ya.”
“It’s not stupid, I’m serious. You never told me why. You never gave me the full story. I’ve only ever had those dumb media articles to rely on. Everyone else’s words. I don’t want that.” Sakusa says insistently, “I want to hear your story coming from you. So before you let me go… tell me why.”
Atsumu visibly gulps, staring at Sakusa with an expression so open and yet so complex. Like, it’s right there and Sakusa could figure it out if he tried, but all the important pieces are still missing.
“Tell me why you don’t think you’re good enough to be with anyone.” Sakusa says.
Because in the end, that’s all this is, isn’t it? That’s what it’s always been.
Miya Atsumu, one of the biggest stars in the country, was somehow convinced that he’d never be good enough for anybody.
How does that happen?
“I was too young.” Atsumu says, interrupting his thoughts.
And for the first time since they’d met all those years ago, Atsumu starts talking. About everything.
“Our family didn’t have any money. Dad only worked as a taxi driver ‘n it’s a respectable job, but not one that earns a lotta money. Mom was a housewife. Samu and I gettin’ into actin’ only happened ‘cause people always told my mom that her sons were good-lookin’ and that we’d probably make it as celebrities. So… she took some headshots of us. Gettin’ that first milk commercial was a breeze. We were cute. We were twins. What more could they possibly need?”
“It was tough at first. We were gettin’ some jobs, but never anythin’ that earned enough. Never anythin’ big. But back then, as a kid, y’know, I was just glad to be able to help, even just a little bit. I wanted to do more. When I started actin’, it had nothin’ to do with it bein’ my dream or lovin’ it. I did it because I wanted to earn money for my family and it made me happy when I did. That’s all.”
Sakusa stares, fixated. “But that changed, didn’t it? Eventually.”
“It did. With The Parent Prank. Our first movie. I fell in love.” Atsumu smiles wistfully. “Samu fuckin’ hated it. He liked the acting but not enough to enjoy all the attention. I liked the acting, I liked the attention, I liked all of it. I was twelve years old and already convinced that it’s all I wanted to do for the rest of my life. I stopped goin’ to school ‘n started bein’ home-schooled. And with that, I lost everythin’ of what was left of regular living. I was a full-time celebrity. Hell, by the age of thirteen, I was gettin’ drunk at parties. Think about that. Samu didn’t like that. He said I was turnin’ crazy.”
“Is that why he quit?” Sakusa asks, “Because you two got into a fight over that?”
“No.” Atsumu shakes his head, “No, we fight all the fuckin’ time. We fought a lot those years, but he didn’t quit because of that. He quit because of two reasons. The first, because he hated it. He only stuck around as long as he did, because I didn’t want him to quit. He only stuck around for me.”
“And the second, then?”
“The second…” Atsumu’s throat bobs, “— was because dad got sick. Colon cancer, stage four. We were fifteen. Not exactly swimmin’ in money, but we were rising stars. That’s when he quit for good. Half because he was gettin’ fuckin’ miserable, half because he wanted to help, in his own way. Mom had to start workin’ a bunch of odd jobs to help pay for dad’s chemo so Samu wanted to stay at home. Take care of dad… spend more time with him.”
Sakusa has to clench his fists to keep from reaching out and holding him. “You didn’t get to?”
“No. I went on overdrive. Fifteen to nineteen? That’s when I made all those box office hits. That’s when I started earning all my money. I couldn’t spend any time with my family, but I figured it was okay because at least I was finally earnin’ some good money. Because at least… dad would be cured.”
He takes a deep, shaky breath. “It was a lot. It was a lot for anyone, let alone a fuckin’ kid. It was confusing. I loved acting, I love makin’ those movies, I loved my job. But my dad was sick with cancer, my brother left me to have all that spotlight to myself, and I kept going thinking that if I stopped, dad would die. So, I didn’t stop. Even when I wanted to. Even when I needed to.”
“Did no one… try to talk to you?”
“I never really told my family or friends what was goin’ on or how I was feelin’ and I barely got to see them, either. The only one who was around me most of the time back then was my manager. The more I worked and earned, the more he did too. He started giving me uppers to keep me workin’. I was sixteen.”
“Jesus Christ.” Sakusa says under his breath, closing his eyes.
“I hurt a lot of people durin’ that time. Dated people who cared about me, when the only reason I dated them was ‘cause I needed someone to hold onto. I was a goddamn nightmare. It’s probably why Kita-san wouldn’t be with me, either.” He laughs humorlessly, “I wanted to quit, but I didn’t want to quit. I wanted to stop, but couldn’t stop. I loved the applause, but the noise was excruciating. I didn’t know what I wanted. At that point, I think the only thing I was sure I wanted was for my dad to get better.”
His chin wobbles. “He died when I was twenty. Mom and Samu were there when he passed. I was at a goddamn party.”
Sakusa lowers his head. “I’m sorry.”
“I broke.” Atsumu says, “A whole month long mental breakdown. I don’t remember much of it. I was filmin’ a movie but they fired me ‘cause I barely showed up. I can’t remember any of it. I was drunk or high for most of it. People around me chalked it up to me bein’ a party boy. Hell, I think I kinda thought that too. But then… that last night.”
He doesn’t elaborate but Sakusa’s pretty sure he knows what he means. His heart rate quickens.
“What happened… on the last night?”
“I was supposed to have dinner with Samu. Those dinners were supposed to be a weekly thing, but the busier we got, it became more of a… once in a blue moon thing. I didn’t want him to see me. I knew he’d know somethin’ was wrong with me the second he looked at my face… so that night, I snorted some cocaine and then got really fuckin’ drunk. Drunker than I’ve ever been. Drank a whole bottle of Vodka all on my own. Maybe it was more than that. I figured that if I was both high and wasted, then I’d be able to act happier. Like I was at parties, y’know?”
He pauses, giving himself some time before he continues talking. Sakusa only waits.
“I wasn’t tryin’ to kill myself, Omi.” He says in a quivery whisper, “I just didn’t realize how far I was takin’ it.”
“Can I hold your hand?”
“Yes, please.” Atsumu says quickly.
Sakusa reaches over and rests his hand over his. Atsumu is shaking, so he squeezes it. Atsumu squeezes back. It feels like… coming home after a long vacation.
He takes a deep breath in and then out. He does it twice.
“I almost died.” Atsumu smiles weakly, staring at their joint hands resting on his lap, as if it’s the only thing keeping him grounded.
“They took me to rehab. I was there for 60 days and the rest of the time, I spent at home tryin’ to get myself back together. Kita, Samu, and Suna wouldn’t leave me alone for a minute. They kept askin’ me why. I said I didn’t know because I really didn’t. I couldn’t understand for a long fuckin’ time why it got that bad. Why I couldn’t just bring myself to talk to someone, why I decided that I would shoulder all of it on my own, why did I… how did I let myself get to that point? Why did the thing that I thought I loved most, turn me into that person?”
“You were going through a lot.” Sakusa says.
“We all go through a lot, but not all of us turn into alcoholics and addicts.” Atsumu says pointedly, “And I… It took me a fuckin’ while to understand myself. To forgive myself. To look in the mirror and stop seein’ some pathetic washed up man who fucked his life up by the age of twenty.”
Atsumu turns to look at him. He isn’t crying.
“I’ve been completely sober since I was twenty-one. It got better with time. There’s a comfort in knowing that you’ve already gone the lowest ya could possibly go, ‘cause that means you can only go up from there. Last time I drank was just a little under a year before we met. You were the first person I worked with when I got back, y’know?” He says and it’s the first genuine smile he’s given him since they’d started the conversation, “Sakusa fuckin’ Kiyoomi. Disciplined, driven, goal-oriented, hard working, and talented. Ridiculously talented.”
“Are you trying to flatter me?”
“Ya reminded me of everythin’ I loved about acting.” Atsumu says, sincerely. “Ya reminded me of all the good qualities that I’ve always wanted but never had. I think that’s why I was so drawn to you… other than the fact that yer hot.”
“That night you tried to kiss me…” Atsumu says, softly, like soft is the only way he can say it, “I didn’t do it because when I leaned in, your mouth smelled like Vodka.”
Sakusa’s heart sinks. “Shit. I’m sorry. I didn’t…”
“Don’t apologize. Ya couldn’t have known. It wasn’t something ya would’ve understood. I liked ya. A lot. And I was scared that if I let myself have ya, I’d ruin us the way I’d ruined everythin’ else. Because the last time I was as fixated with anythin’, it was with alcohol. And that ruined me. That ruined everyone I loved. I didn’t wanna do that to us. I wouldn’t have been good for ya, Omi-Omi. I’m not what ya want.”
Atsumu squeezes his hand tightly, smiling gently at him. “If peace was what ya wanted… if safe was what ya wanted, ya wouldn’t have gotten that from me. I don’t think ya ever could.”
He doesn’t say anything after that and neither does Sakusa. Their fingers stay interlaced as they listen to the waves crashing and the faraway dance music coming from one of the restaurant bars.
When Sakusa finds his voice again, the first thing he can think of saying is, “I’m sorry.”
Atsumu doesn’t tell him not to apologize again. Instead he asks, “Why?”
“Because you scared me.” Sakusa admits out loud, for the first time. “Liking you… scared me. It shouldn’t have.”
“So, ya liked me?” Atsumu teases.
He gives him a pointed look. “You know I did.”
Atsumu bites back a smile. “What were ya scared of then? Is it because of yer experience with Ushiwaka?”
“Ya were scared I’d break up with ya and you’d see me everywhere ya went? Were ya scared yer parents would hate me?”
“I was scared of all those things. I was scared I’d risk everything and that we’d fail.” Sakusa says, “Because you were everything I’ve conditioned myself to stay away from, and yet I wanted you anyway. I wanted you more than anyone I’ve ever wanted. I think you might be the only one I’ve ever actually wanted. Not because you were comfortable, not because you were safe, but just because I did.”
Atsumu is looking at him like he’s telling him the secret to immortal life.
“I liked you so much that it terrified me. You made me want to throw out everything I’d ever known and everything I ever thought I wanted.”
“And what ya wanted was… safe?”
“What I wanted was to make my parents proud.” Sakusa says. "Make everyone proud."
Atsumu lowers his head. “And ya couldn’t have done that if you were with me.”
Sakusa looks down at their joint hands. He stares and keeps staring. He rubs the back of Atsumu’s hand with his thumb, the way he always used to do.
“No. I was just stupid.” Sakusa admits, looking up at him. “You know, when I asked you if I should say yes to Alisa… I was hoping you’d say no.”
Atsumu smirks. “Would you have listened if I did?”
“In a heartbeat.” He answers without a hint of hesitation.
Atsumu gives him a hard look, examining him for a few seconds.
“Then, why didn’t ya just say no to her?”
“Because I was thinking the exact same thing you told me back then. My parents would’ve loved her. The public would’ve loved us. We made sense. She was…”
“Safe.” Atsumu finishes.
Sakusa pauses, biting his lower lip. “Safe used to be the only thing I looked for. But the older I get, the more safe just doesn’t cut it for me anymore.”
Safe just didn’t cut it anymore.
The waves crash, the palm trees sway, and for a moment in the quiet, it feels a lot like they’re twenty-two again.
“Omi,” Atsumu says, shaky but hopeful, “If I asked ya somethin’ now… would ya still hear me out?”
Sakusa’s body goes stiff. His fingers tighten around Atsumu’s hand.
“I don’t know. What do you wanna ask?”
“It’s stupid. I’m too late. I know you’ve had a good thing goin’ on with Alisa. I’m better now, but there’s still so much to work on. My reputation and what happened to me will never go away. I’m not safe and I dunno if bein’ with me will be peaceful at all. But I’m selfish, so I’m gonna ask ya anyway.”
He looks him in the eye and this time he’s crying. Sakusa fights the urge to reach out and wipe them away.
“Don’t get married, Omi.” Atsumu begs, quiet but desperate, “ Please don’t get married.”
Sakusa almost laughs. Almost. Because he just doesn’t know how else to react.
It’s borderline hilarious how long it’s taken to them to get this far. How long it took them to learn not to rely on physical touch, but to just sit down and talk to each other.
“I’m not engaged, Atsumu.” He says.
There’s a pregnant pause. When Atsumu does speak, it’s in a high, squeaky voice.
“We broke up recently.” Sakusa explains, “We talked and ended things. It was a mutual decision. I love her and she loves me, but we’re not in love with each other. We couldn’t keep going like that.”
“I…” Atsumu stammers, “What?”
This time, Sakusa does chuckle. “She knew how I felt. And she told me… to go and love you. That’s why I’m here.”
“To love me?” Atsumu repeats, dazed.
Sakusa shakes his head. “To think about things. Get clarity. Decide what to do now that I’m letting go of everything I believed in since I was a kid. And you know what I realized?”
Atsumu stays silent, waiting.
Sakusa raises their joint hands. He lets go slowly and then maneuvers Atsumu’s hand palm up, caressing the skin and lines with his fingers.
“I think I already knew I’d fall in love with you the first day of our workshop… and felt it on that plane to Okinawa, back then.”
“The plane.” Atsumu repeats, like he doesn’t understand what the hell is going on.
Sakusa continues, “I don’t know if I was too stupid to realize or if I just didn’t want to realize. But, you know what? It sounds stupid but whenever you hold my hand… I think it’s the only time I ever feel safe.”
He squeezes Atsumu’s hand so tightly but in a way that still managed to be gentle.
“Atsumu, I think the reason I’ve been so scared is because you’re the only one in my life who’s ever made me feel safe.”
Atsumu is crying in earnest now and Sakusa knows his own eyes are getting teary. He presses their foreheads together as Atsumu hiccups.
“Do ya mean that?” He asks, voice pinched.
“Yer not gettin’ married?” Atsumu repeats, “And yer in love with me?”
“Yes.” Sakusa nods.
“Then,” Atsumu sniffs, pressing closer, “Can I please kiss ya now?”
This time, Sakusa doesn’t hesitate. He doesn’t think about his goals, his list, his reputation. He doesn’t think about Atsumu’s reputation. He doesn’t think about his parents. He doesn’t think about their careers or what the public would say. He doesn’t think about their goddamn contract.
He takes the contract in Atsumu’s other hand, crumples it into a ball, and lunges forward to finally, finally, fucking— finally allow himself to kiss the man he loves.
Because this isn’t wrong. There is nothing about this that feels wrong.
When their lips meet, Atsumu makes a fragile noise, clinging onto his shirt needily, pulling him closer, like no closeness could ever be enough, and Sakusa rests his hand on the back of his head, dragging him closer, like he’ll never be able to bear being any further apart ever again.
They kiss and it’s messy and there’s tears everywhere and it’s all teeth and tongue, but it feels like six years coming to a close. It doesn’t feel like an end. It feels like a beginning.
It feels like life was finally starting.
“Atsumu,” Sakusa says, breathy, pulling away slightly to look him in the eye, “If it’s not too late to ask… will you go on a date with me?”
“A date?” Atsumu repeats incredulously, still pressing desperate kisses all over Sakusa’s face. “Omi, ya better fuckin’ ask me to be yer boyfriend right now or I’m outta here.”
Sakusa snorts, “I was trying to be respectful and give you time.”
“I’ve had enough time.” Atsumu retorts, “You’ve given me more than enough time. I’m ready now. I wanna be happy now.”
He cups Sakusa’s cheek, “I wanna be with you now.”
Sakusa’s lips curl up. “Okay. Then… will you be my boy—”
“Yes.” Atsumu says, leaning forward to kiss him again.
The longer they keep kissing, the more it starts to feel like familiar territory, the way they used to be the last time they were doing this. Kissing in Okinawa.
“Hey,” Sakusa says, feeling adventurous, “Wanna… do an old scene right now?
“The last scene from Make It Right.” Sakusa clarifies, tilting his head to let Atsumu press more kisses to the side of his neck, “You know, where they have sex on the beach.”
Atsumu freezes. “What if we get caught?”
“Then, we get caught.” Sakusa shrugs. “We get caught and I get videotaped riding you like a pony. Or are you too scared now?”
Sakusa isn’t sure where this bout of courage is coming from. If it’s just the adrenaline from confessing or overwhelming joy from finally loving or the petty child in him not wanting Atsumu’s most recent headline to be the fact that he was kissing Kita Shinsuke in a car and would rather have it be Miya Atsumu having sex with Sakusa Kiyoomi by the sea in Okinawa.
He’s never gonna say that out loud. Atsumu’s gonna have a field day.
“Scared?” Atsumu asks, staring at Sakusa like he’s prey, “Omi, Omi, Omi… it’s like ya don’t even know me.”
It’s the last warning he gets before Atsumu pounces on him.
“Are ya sure?” Atsumu asks for the last time, before taking any pieces of clothing off. “Last chance to back out before naked pictures of us are possibly spread online tomorrow.”
“Let them.” Sakusa says, pulling him down to kiss him again, to kiss him forever. “You’re here, right? I’ll be okay.”
Sakusa had never seen a smile so beautiful that it lit up a night. “‘Course. Yer always safe with me.”
They don’t wake up to articles and pictures of them having sex by the sea in Okinawa and Sakusa is just a little disappointed.
But for the first time, he does wake up next to a blonde head of hair, morning breath, soft skin, and an arm around his middle.
He turns his gaze to the sunlight peeking out of the curtains as Atsumu groans, pulling him closer, mumbling, “G’backt’sleep,’mi”.
Sakusa smiles because he recognizes the feeling in his chest, even when he’s never felt it before. Maybe that’s just how love works.
He closes his eyes, knowing that a whole lifetime of searching and a whole list of unanswered questions are finally answered, coming in the form of one person.
“Listen, Omi,” Atsumu says, like a coach giving his student athlete a pep talk, “This is yer fifth nomination ‘n how many times have I told ya you’d win for sure? Zero, right? This is the first. And Samu told me this mornin’ that he woke up feelin’ real happy. Over the moon. So, trust me when I say yer gonna win.”
Sakusa huffs out a breath, trying to get rid of the nerves. “You don’t know that.”
“But I do.” Atsumu says, matter-of-factly.
“And the winner for Outstanding Performance by a Lead Actor is…”
“It’s not gonna be me.” Sakusa rolls his eyes at the sight of Atsumu’s shaky leg.
“It’s gonna be you.” He shoots back.
“It’s gonna be you.” Kiyoko nods, from his other side. “I mean, it better be ‘cause Motoya-kun and I have a bet with Bokuto-kun.”
“Sakusa Kiyoomi for Dr. Stone! ”
“Oh my god, it is me.” Sakusa whispers to himself, as everyone in the crowd stands up and cheers for him.
“I knew it!” Atsumu yells, pulling Sakusa to his feet and giving him a giant bear hug. His cologne smells headache inducing, as always.
Kiyoko has had her phone out, recording everything since before Kamenashi Kazuya had even gotten on stage to announce the winner. Sakusa wants to ask her what she would’ve done if he’d lost.
“Get up there!” Atsumu says, pushing him, reminding him that he has to move.
When he gets on stage, Kamenashi shakes his hand and passes him the trophy. It’s heavier than he thought it was.
(Atsumu would always offer to let him carry his trophies but Sakusa’s always rejected, saying that the first time he ever carries an Academy Film Prize, he wants it to be his own.)
He stands in front of the microphone, thinks about the speech he’s had memorized since the age of seventeen, and then decides to toss it out at the last minute.
“I, uh… Well. Hi.”
What the fuck.
The crowd laughs at him and he almost just wants to just not do a speech at all, until he spots Atsumu. His Atsumu.
Looking up at him and beaming with pride. And he knows he has to do it.
“There are a lot of people I want to thank. If it wouldn’t take me too long, I’d thank every director, producer, every single cast and crew I’ve worked with. But that would take fucking forever, so I won’t do that to all of you. So, I’ll just thank the director, producer, cast and crew for Dr. Stone, thank you for giving me the chance to challenge myself, to learn more, and to become such an interesting and layered character.”
“I want to thank my mom and dad, who I know are watching on TV, everything I do, it’s in hopes that it makes you proud, I love you. Komori, my asshole cousin and Kiyoko, my asshole manager, thanks to you both for keeping me in check and for witnessing me at my worst but loving me, anyway.”
“It’s my contractual obligation to.” Kiyoko mumbles to herself, but she’s crying too hard for it to look honest.
“I wanna thank Osamu and Suna who aren’t here tonight, for somehow, for some reason, becoming two of my manager’s closest friends.”
“Osamu-kun makes the best onigiri.” Kiyoko sniffs.
“He’s been workin’ on it.” Atsumu sniffs back.
“And last of all...” Sakusa takes a deep shaky breath, closing his eyes as if to prepare himself, before looking straight at Atsumu.
Atsumu looks terrified in a way he barely ever is, but also just so ridiculously… happy.
“To my favorite onscreen kiss and my favorite offscreen kiss too, who’s shown me the bravery in fear, the strength in hopelessness, the beauty in chaos, and the freedom in loving with no bounds.”
Sakusa smiles, because this is probably the scariest thing he’s ever going to do, because they’re about to be the first openly gay celebrity couple in the country, because this is Miya Atsumu.
And yet that fear is overpowered only by an overwhelming sense of pride and relief.
“My lover, my Takeru, and my Miya Atsumu, here’s to the rest of our lives.” He hears an audible gasp echo around the venue, senses everyone’s eyes going wide, but he doesn’t care. He doesn’t care anymore.
He’s only looking at one pair of eyes. It’s the only one that’s ever really mattered all along.
So, he raises the shiny trophy above his head, victoriously. But that night, nothing shines brighter than Atsumu’s radiant smile.
Glowing, like he always does. Smiling, like a movie still that you know you’ll remember for the rest of your life.
“So, world! Just keep on watching us! We’re gonna give you a show you’ll never fucking forget!”
Here's to freedom, here's to love, and here's to giving yourself your best chance.