Rating: T (for hot makeouts)
Author's notes: This is a crosspost from AO3 and ffnet.
Kink meme prompt. I won't post the details of the prompt here because it kinda tells you exactly what happens.
"If you paid even the least bit of attention," Yu said in that aggravatingly calm way of his. He even had his hand on his hip like he always did when he wanted to appear so casual.
"I did!" Yosuke declared, more annoyed than he'd ever been at his friend. "You clearly said—"
The team leader shook his head. "You need to listen when I'm talking—"
Chie and Yukiko watched the back-and-forth, the latter girl gripping the former's arm tightly. The boys had been arguing for a full minute and showed no signs of stopping.
"Uh, g-guys, if you keep that up," Chie said hesitantly, "w-we're gonna get kicked out."
It was, perhaps, a good thing they were the only 'customers' in the electronics department today.
"Look," Yosuke went on, heedless of her warning. "You said, 'Use a Garula.' So I used a Garula. Not my fault that Shadow could reflect it!"
"I said don't use Garula!"
The brown-haired teen crossed his arms with a huff. "When have you ever told me what not to do?"
"Maybe if you were listening to me instead of your music—"
"Maybe if you spoke louder...!"
Yu twitched like he'd been slapped. His face, which had maintained a neutral expression up to this point despite the rising tension, flushed. He turned away sharply and strode away, dress shoes tapping out across the store's tiled floor.
Yosuke, breathing heavily, stared after him.
A few moments later, Chie spoke up. "Uh, you're just gonna let him go?"
He blinked at her. "Well, yeah? I mean..."
Then he frowned, his anger deflating as he realized he'd just had a fight with his best friend. It was the first fight they'd ever had, really.
What if Yu would keep a grudge? What if Yu stayed angry at him and ignored him the next day at school?
Just imagining that made him hug himself. When Chie gave him a funny look, he pretended he was just crossing his arms. "Uh... Did you see which way he went?" he asked as nonchalantly as he could manage.
"He went upstairs, to the food court," Yukiko replied.
What, was he going to calm his anger with a root beer float? Yosuke almost rolled his eyes.
He climbed up the stairs and headed to the table that was their secret headquarters, but Yu wasn't there. He knew Yukiko wouldn't lie to him about this, so he looked around the rest of the food court. It took some doing—his friend wasn't at any of the tables, nor the food counter, nor behind any of the decorative bushes or the trash cans—but eventually he spied the gray-haired boy at the playground. He was in the very farthest corner, sitting on the wood encircling the sandbox, his head bowed low. He didn't hear Yosuke approach.
It took Yosuke a moment to realize his friend was sobbing into his hands. His eyes widened. Had their fight been that bad?
He saw two options before him. The first was to turn around and pretend he never saw this. The other...
He took a deep breath to give himself some courage, then walked right on over to his friend, plopped down next to him, and put his arms around him.
It was only fair! Yu had given him a big man-hug just like this when he'd been crying that one time at the river...
Yu didn't really respond to his presence, or at least did he didn't stop crying, though he allowed Yosuke to pull him into a better position. Now his head was against his chest, and Yosuke was patting his back, telling him that he was sorry, he was wrong, he should've listened better to his instructions. "It's, uh, okay, partner, really. I'll, umm—"
"'s not okay," the other boy finally mumbled. His voice sounded like a croak, broken from emotion. "I'm a b-bad leader."
"You are not a bad leader!" Yosuke scolded.
"I'm a bad leader if you can't h-hear me."
"You are not a bad leader," Yosuke repeated, but Yu was stubbornly shaking his head.
"I'm a bad leader, a-and you know it."
"Look at me, look at me!" Yosuke forced Yu's face up and stared into his eyes, which were all puffy and bloodshot and full of hurt. "You. Are. Not—" he began to enunciate slowly, but Yu was already shaking his head in denial yet again.
Frustrated, Yosuke looked away from him, and that's when the idea came to him: something that would surely get his partner's attention.
Without thinking about it further, Yosuke tilted Yu's head just so and kissed him with his eyes closed.
Yu didn't kiss back, not really, though Yosuke could tell he was startled from the way he shifted, but at the same time he hadn't pulled away, and...
"If... if you were a bad leader, I-I wouldn't have done that," Yosuke murmured.
Several beats passed, Yosuke's heart pounding as he worried about how his partner was going to react. Then Yu blinked and repeated, "I'm a bad leader."
"Oh, you are not!"
"No," Yosuke told him firmly. He pressed forward and kissed him again and again. "You are," – kiss – "the best" – kiss – "leader" – kiss – "and my partner."
He finished it with one very long kiss. He was blushing now, because that had been one heck of an admission.
Yu's cheeks were pink, too, and he didn't look all that unhappy anymore. But then he shifted in Yosuke's arms. "Don't believe you," he muttered.
"What? What's not to believe? I'm here right now! You led me here, leader!" He chuckled, and then kissed Yu again. This time he felt the boy smile into the kiss.
He drew back and rubbed his nose against Yu's cheek. Now Yu licked his lips. "I... I'm still not sure."
"You're the one who got us through the castle," Yosuke murmured. He kissed the corner of the boy's mouth, and Yu turned into the kiss, catching him on the lips.
Now Yu was taking the lead here, his hand at the back of Yosuke's neck and the kiss deepening. When he pulled away, Yosuke tried to follow with a disappointed sound. "Yosuke... do you really think...?"
Yosuke nodded eagerly and pressed back into his partner's mouth. He ran his tongue over the other boy's lips. Yu parted them, and then Yosuke began to explore the inside of his partner's mouth. It tasted like Chewing Soul, not a pleasant flavor, really, but at the moment he simply couldn't get enough.
"Partner," he gasped when he came up for breath. "You're the only one I ever want at my side."
He felt Yu's hand at his back travel down to his backside. "Yeah?" the boy said casually while his fingers toyed with one of his belt loops.
"Yeah," Yosuke assured him, very aware of the warmth of his partner's hands through the fabric of his pants. "But... serious talk here. What got you so upset...?"
Yu lowered his head until his forehead was resting against Yosuke's chest. "I just... h-hate raising my voice..." he mumbled.
"I love hearing your voice," Yosuke said. "Uh, uh, I mean... Quiet or loud, it's..."
"Mm," said Yu. "I hate shouting. But you need to be able to hear me in the middle of battle."
"You've been doing great so far," Yosuke assured him. "It was just today things went bad..." He trailed off, aware that Yu's fingers were now curling under his waistband. He swallowed. "Y-yeah, d-don't be afraid to sh-shout at me..." His voice was shaking as much as his body.
"I'll try," Yu murmured, his eyes unfocused in concentration. Yosuke felt his fingers inching their way down under his waistband now. He swallowed again, and when he shifted in his seat, Yu used the opportunity to move his hand down further until his hand was most definitely flush against the skin of his butt.
"F-Feeling better now?" Yosuke murmured.
"No," Yu said, his eyes sparkling from the force of his lie. Yosuke snickered and told him he'd make it better. He proceeded to kiss him, pushing his tongue into the other boy's mouth, and he was rewarded with Yu squeezing his butt.
Then Yu drew away suddenly, pulling back his wandering hands, too. Yosuke frowned at him, but Yu was looking past him. He turned to take a look.
"Mama, watch me go down the slide!" a little kid shouted, running towards the playground.
Yosuke sighed. Customers always ruined everything.
Yu patted his hand. "We're going into the TV again tomorrow..."
"I might... need some more reassurance afterward..." Yu's fingers curled around his hand and squeezed.
Yosuke just grinned.
Summary: Yosuke goes on a first date with his girlfriend. Things go wrong. Or maybe right.
Author's notes: This is a crosspost from AO3 and ffnet.
Kink Meme Prompt: I just want a fem!protag or fem!Souji being cute with Yosuke.
I didn't name the protagonist, but I think I wrote it pretty much like a SouYo anyway...
Yosuke arrived at home in a sheer panic, barely remembering to take off his shoes at the entryway. He raced to his room, almost tripping over his own feet in his haste, and threw his school bag to the middle of the floor with so little care that half the books fell out. He tore open the closet door and proceeded to stare blankly at his clothes.
What the hell should he wear?
"Sweetie, did you have a bad day?" his mom asked from the doorway to his room. She must have followed him from the living room. "You didn't even say hi to me."
Breathless, Yosuke shook his head.
"Well, we're having kakuni for dinner," she went on.
"Umm," he emitted while searching for his voice. "M-Mom, I'm... I'm not gonna be home for dinner."
"Oh, you and your school friends are hanging out again...?"
Yosuke stared down at the messy floor of his room, a blush creeping over his face.
His mom gasped and moved her hand over her heart. "It's a girl!"
"Moooom!" he wailed in protest, his hands making fists at his sides. She didn't have to make a big deal out of it!
A beat passed. "...It is a girl, right?"
"Y-yeah," he said. "I asked her out... I don't even know how... And she said yes, and..." He looked up at her now. "Mom, I've never been on a date before!"
"You should bring her flowers!" she suggested.
"On a first date...?" That sounded way too forward. He didn't think the girl in question would even like that.
"All girls like flowers," his mom claimed. "You don't have to go all out. Just a sunflower, or an assorted bouquet. You know you can get them at Junes."
"I know... I still don't think..." He shook his head, flustered. "She's special, Mom. I can't mess this up."
"Did you just say 'she's special'?" His mom proceeded to 'aww' and gush at him most embarrassingly.
But it was true. She wasn't just any girl. She was the Investigation Team's leader and his best friend. After all they'd been through together, he couldn't disappoint her.
His mother's fussing almost made him late to pick up his date. It was hard to maintain a natural pace and not rush to her house, but Yosuke couldn't arrive out of breath, though that was liable to happen anyway just from nerves. It was like his childhood asthma was trying to make a comeback. Just be yourself, he told himself. That's what she likes about you, right?
He eventually arrived at the Dojima residence, where he stared at the door for a very long moment, wondering what kind of knock he should use. If he rapped too hard it'd be like he was making a demand, too weak and she wouldn't hear it... Maybe he could try to make a pattern?
Then he realized he was just being an idiot and rang the doorbell.
The door opened just a short time later, revealing his date. She was dressed in clothes he'd never seen on her before: a green marble-patterned one-piece dress that went down to her knees. Her long dark hair, normally tied back so as not to be in her way—vital when they were fighting Shadows—was wavy and loose about her shoulders. She wore a simple silver necklace and a matching bracelet on her left wrist.
"Yosuke-kun," she said upon seeing him, the corners of her lips curling up in a shy smile.
"H...hi," he said, equally shy all of a sudden. She was so dressed up!
There was silence for a beat, and then she asked, "What happened to your hair?"
"Ah?" He patted his brown hair absently. "My mom kind of ruined it."
His mom had forced him into a button-down shirt and the nicest pair of pants he owned, a pair that he hadn't worn since the Hanamura family reunion last year that were just a little too tight for him now. In the process of getting him ready, she'd also refused to let him go out with his hair styled the way he normally kept it. 'If your hair is different, she'll notice that you made an effort to look nice,' she'd said. If his mom had her way, he wouldn't go out with dyed hair, either, but thankfully that couldn't be changed. Now his hair was smooth and flat and parted to the left and definitely not him at all.
"It doesn't look right," she mused. "Your mom helped you get ready?"
"N-no," he lied, but the embarrassment on his face betrayed him, and they both laughed.
"Nanako wanted to help me," she confided. "I almost went out with glittery lip gloss."
"Yeah?" he hazarded, trying not to imagine that. "Where is Nanako-chan?"
Instead of answering, she stepped closer to him. In one swift motion, she pulled his chin towards her and pressed their lips together.
He froze up, because she'd just stolen his first ever kiss and he hadn't expected it at all—he hadn't expected anything like this to happen until the end of the date, if that!—and he realized he was being an idiot again and moved his lips softly with hers. The lip gloss she'd finally chosen to wear was watermelon-flavored.
She broke it off first, her blue-gray eyes hazy as she looked over his shoulder. "Suppose I should've let you get in the house first."
"I'm okay with this," he said, shooting her a silly grin.
Smiling lightly, she shook her head and then closed the front door. He guessed that Nanako-chan wasn't around and wondered if he should take his shoes off or if he should try for another kiss, but he hadn't brought her anything, damn maybe his mom was right and he should have brought flowers...
"It's just me, Yosuke-kun," she said, taking him out of his spiraling thoughts. "You can relax. I'm not going to bring Seiryu out to eat you or anything!"
"Wh-what about Genbu?" he asked, naming one of her other dragon-like Personas.
"Maybe Genbu," she said playfully. She sidled up next to him, took one of his hands and tugged until his arm was wrapped around her waist. "What's the plan for this evening?"
"Uh," he said smartly. He hadn't been expecting so much affection from her so soon; this was supposed to be their first date, after all!
He felt the warmth of her body pressed close to his. She tilted her head at him in question, so he moved in to kiss her, but accidentally hit her nose with his own. So he wasn't all that good at kissing yet, but he'd get there...! He tried again and this time their lips met. After a moment, he dared to run his tongue across her lips, but she pushed back with her own tongue, pressing it into his mouth.
He made a surprised sound and, after enjoying it for a moment, pulled away just a fraction. "I-I like you," he told her.
"So I've heard," she murmured against his mouth.
His face grew even warmer. He'd blurted out those same words just this morning at school, his lame lunchtime confession.
But apparently she hadn't thought it was lame. She'd smiled at him, just like she was doing now...
He wondered if they really needed to go out on a date, or if they could just stay here and keep kissing.
No, no... He'd made reservations at a nice restaurant and everything. He was going to treat her. She was going to have a great time. They were going to have a great time!
"Dinner," he said. "That's the plan."
They made their way to Okina City, firmly holding hands on the bus ride there and talking about nothing really important—their classes this morning, something silly Teddie had said, some weird shoes she'd bought for Chie from Tanaka's Amazing Commodities...
Because it was a Saturday evening, Okina was busy. Not that it was a happening place or anything, but it boasted the only movie theater in miles which led to a high population of bored teenagers hanging around the place. In fact, over half of the bus got off at this stop. Yosuke made sure his girlfriend—girlfriend! It made him giddy to think that he could call her that now—was with him when they exited the bus. They walked around the outdoor mall together since there was some time before the reservation at the restaurant.
They stopped in front of the square's fountain and settled into the bench there. She immediately scooted close to him. The warmth of her hand in his almost made him dizzy—he had a girlfriend, and it wasn't just any girlfriend, it was her, the girl who meant so much to him. He remembered how she'd saved him from those Hableries, and then his Shadow, how she relied on him in battle every time they were in the TV...
They sat together peacefully, just enjoying each other's company while they watched the people around them. When Ai Ebihara strode by, followed by not one but two guys laden with shopping bags, he couldn't resist a comment. "Glad you're not like that."
"I could be," the girl sitting so close to him teased. "I haven't made you go shopping with me yet."
""Yet'? Aww man..." He scratched the back of his head with his free hand and chuckled lightly; he knew she was joking.
They watched Ebihara go into a clothing store that was obviously overpriced. "Must be nice to have money like that," Yosuke said. "Her family's rich, did you know? Her dad's paying for all that."
"Isn't your family rather well off? A manager can't be making pennies."
"Maybe," he said. "I've never asked. I mean, how are you supposed to ask? 'Hey Pop, how much money have we made from putting everyone else out of business?'" He sighed. It wasn't something he could do anything about. He didn't like to think of his family as 'the bad guys' like so many people in Inaba seemed to. It was just how the modern era worked.
She squeezed his hand in support. "I don't know about my family, either," she murmured. "They don't even send me an allowance."
"Is that why you've got all those odd jobs?" he asked. "I don't get an allowance, either. Ever since we moved here, Pop stopped giving me one. He wants me to work for my money. It's not all bad, though, because when I finally get my hard-earned paycheck, then I can do things like treat my friends to lunch, or... or take you out to dinner."
He took both of her hands in his own and looked into her eyes. Her smile made him blush self-consciously. He helped her to her feet, then led her to the restaurant.
He had picked out a restaurant that was a little nicer than many of the others around, but not unapproachable. It boasted an extensive sushi bar that he was looking forward to. With his date at his side, he navigated through the throng of guests waiting in the foyer and to the greeting podium, where he told the well-dressed man standing behind it that he had a reservation. "Hanamura. For two."
The well-dressed man squinted down at a list behind the podium. "Hmm... Hanamura? I don't seem to have that name on here."
"Check again?" Yosuke suggested.
The man checked again, but again failed to find it. "I'm sorry, we don't have a reservation for that name," he said, looking up. "Are you quite sure you made one for tonight?"
"Uh, yeah. I called this afternoon." Yosuke shifted his weight, and his date took his arm, sensing his growing unease. He sent her an uncomfortable smile before turning back to the man behind the podium.
The well-dressed man hummed. He looked behind Yosuke, where a line was forming full of other guests requiring his attention. "I think Sato-kun was at the desk then..." the man muttered to himself, drumming his fingers against the podium. "One moment please." He stepped away to confer with another member of the staff.
Yosuke's heart fell as the picture became clear. He recognized the man he was speaking with: a classmate whose family went out of business due to Junes. Yosuke hadn't recognized his voice on the line this afternoon when he'd called the restaurant to make reservations, but it was obvious now. Holding a grudge, Sato-kun likely hadn't put in the reservation at all.
The man returned to the podium. He smoothed down his tie. "I'm terribly sorry, but all I can do is put your name on the waitlist. It's estimated that it will be around a 45 minute wait before a table for two is ready."
Forty-five minutes!? Keeping his anger and disappointment in check, Yosuke turned to his date.
"I want to speak to a manager," she told the well-dressed man.
"Err," said Yosuke, surprised at the authority in her tone. "N-no, it's all right. Come on, let's go." He tugged on her arm gently, ignoring her frown until they were outside of the restaurant.
"Why did you stop me?" she asked when he stopped walking. She looked quite unhappy with him.
"I didn't want to cause a scene," Yosuke explained, feeling super lame at justifying his retreat. "I mean, I get customers yelling at me all the time at Junes, so..." He ran his fingers through his too-flat hair, messing up his mom's delicate part work.
"You shouldn't let people walk over you like that, Yosuke-kun," she chided. "I've let it happen to me too often. People start taking advantage of you."
"I-I know," he muttered. "But it's not like complaining would make a table become available."
"Maybe if we complained for 45 minutes," she suggested with a wry smile.
He recognized it was a joke, but he didn't laugh at it. "I'm sorry," he said. "I really did make a reservation."
"I know," she said. She took his arm and leaned into him, the cold metal of her bracelet pressing against the skin of his arm. He found himself blushing at the contact. She didn't need to try and cheer him up like that, but he was glad that she did.
"W-well, do you want to try another place?" He sighed. "I'm sure they're all going to have long wait times. We could go for fast food, but I wanted a nice dinner."
"There's a cafe by the movie theater," she suggested. "It's nice, and I've never seen it very busy."
Yosuke wasn't much of a coffee drinker outside of the homebrew served to the part-timers in the breakroom at Junes, but it was better than any other plan he had at the moment. The Chagall Cafe had an inviting enough atmosphere, about the same as any other coffee shop he'd been to when he'd lived in the city. A chalkboard by the door advertised specials, and delicious-looking cakes were displayed behind glass at the counter.
The man behind the counter was wearing sunglasses even though it was evening and he was indoors. With his arms crossed, he looked rather intimidating, but she strode right up to the counter and Yosuke followed her.
He peered at the menu, wondering what he should get. There were a bunch of drinks with strange names, including something called a 'Pheromone Coffee.' He wondered what she'd think if he ordered that.
While he was still looking at the menu, she ordered the 'Owner's Original Blend.' After a search, Yosuke spied it on the menu board and nearly jumped. 5,000 yen for a coffee? That was an entire day's pay! For that, they could both go to a movie and buy the mega snack pack there.
He was still reeling when she was taking out her purse to pay. "N-no," he protested, pulling out his own wallet. "I'll get it!" Expensive or not, he was determined to treat her.
She turned her head and narrowed her eyes at him. The corner of her mouth turned up in amusement as she dropped the bills that she had pulled out onto the counter. The cashier took them, counted them out, and then handed her a receipt and told her that her drink would be out in just a few minutes.
Crap, Yosuke thought. Did she not want him paying for her? They should've talked about this beforehand. He'd totally messed up...
Her hand found his and squeezed it. "You can buy the snacks, Yosuke-kun," she said, perhaps sensing his dilemma.
He smiled at her, somewhat uneasily. "A-all right... What do you want?"
"Anything. We'll share." She let go of his hand. "I'll find a seat."
He ended up ordering a lemon cake and chai tea for himself. Even with the cake, his order came out to less than 2,000 yen. He tried not to think about it.
He found her at a table for two. Her side of the table was part of a booth that provided seating to two other tables as well. He took the seat across from her in an oversized blue-green armchair. It was rather comfortable. His only complaint was that the table between them was too large for them to hold hands across it, and the tablecloth hanging over the edge discouraged keeping hands under it.
She smiled at him, and he smiled back, and the moment dragged on until he realized he should probably make some small talk. A first date was about getting to know each other, right? "So, uh, do you come here often?" he asked.
Ugh, could he have asked a lamer question...? Hanamura, at this rate, you're not getting a second date, he thought to himself with an inward sigh. He crossed his arms in his seat, exasperated with himself, because if he wasn't having a good time, there was no way she was.
"Only when I'm in Okina," she reported. "And when I have free time."
"Not often, then," he said, nodding to himself. "You're always busy doing one thing or another."
"It keeps me out of trouble." Her eyes were half-lidded and her smile was playful.
Hmm, maybe he was wrong and she actually was having a good time. "You sure about that? I think it's more about you looking for trouble," he teased. There were quite a few stories going around about her—how she'd scared off some boys who were bullying Chie, and how she'd defended Kanji in some altercation with the police. Man, he needed to get the full stories from her sometime.
"Or maybe trouble just finds you," he mused. "We still don't know why you didn't have a Shadow, and why you have more than one Persona. I mean, there has to be a reason."
"I'm sure we'll find out eventually," she murmured. "Why, are you getting bored with just Jiraiya?"
He thought about it. It'd be nice if he could use a Persona strong against electricity. He hated getting taken out of a fight so easily at times. Why, just the other day—
"It's not that great having more than one," she continued, lowering her gaze to the table. "Sometimes it feels like my head is going to explode. Speaking of, I probably shouldn't have ordered the original blend..."
"And speaking of that coffee..."
The store owner was heading towards their table, carrying a tray. He set down the lemon cake first, and then Yosuke's chai tea. The man raised a bushy eyebrow questioningly when he set down the Owner's Original Blend in front of the girl who'd ordered it. She thanked him for the drink and he grunted before heading back to the service counter.
What's that guy's problem? Yosuke wondered. He dipped a finger in his tea, making sure it wasn't too hot to drink. The scent of cinnamon wafted from it. He took a sip and it tasted like milky pumpkin spice. It was way better than the Dokudami tea available at the Shiroku Store.
"This is great," he remarked. "How's yours?"
She didn't answer. He looked up from his drink and saw her listlessly stirring the coffee with a metal spoon.
"Are you all right?" he asked.
"I shouldn't have ordered this," she muttered.
"Huh? It's no good?" For the price, he thought, it should be some mind-blowing experience.
"It's a bit strong," she said. He spied a faint blush on her cheeks. She was embarrassed about this for some reason. It was cute.
"I could go to the counter ask for some more cream or sugar," he offered. "Would that help?"
She shook her head.
"Well... I don't mind switching drinks, if you'd rather have my tea. It's a bit spicy, but in a good way."
She blinked at him in surprise at his offer. "I do wonder what would happen if you drank this," she mused, staring down at the cup. She seemed to be thinking. Then she looked up at him. "Yosuke-kun, sit over here." She patted the place next to her in the booth seat.
"Uh, that side's supposed to be for one," he said. "If I sit there, then no one can use the table next to us."
"Yosuke-kun," she repeated in a reproachful voice that said, 'You're no fun.'
He glanced around the cafe and realized he was being an idiot again. There were plenty of other open seats, and of course he wanted to sit next to her! He moved his drink over to her side of the table and then joined her in the booth seat.
Soon she took his arm and wrapped it around her back, and then she was resting her head on his shoulder.
Wow, this was nice! He tried not to blush at her closeness, but he couldn't really help it.
"I'm sorry, Yosuke-kun," she said with a sigh.
"Huh? What for?"
She sat up and drank down her coffee all at once, emitting a small whine when she put the empty cup back on the table. Then her body sort of twitched and she fell heavily onto him.
"Hey!" he said while trying to push her body back upright. He called her name a few times, but she was completely unconscious. He gently shook her, to no response.
"She always succumbs," a gruff voice remarked. Yosuke glanced up and the store owner was standing by the table. "She hasn't yet matured enough to persevere against my sublime invention. Are you worried? She'll be back eventually."
"Uh... thanks?" Yosuke said, but the man had already walked away.
What sort of coffee knocked people out like that? Wait, this has happened to her before? Yosuke looked down at her dozing face. It took him another moment to understand that she'd known this was going to happen. Was that why she'd asked him to sit with her? She trusted him enough to watch over her while she was passed out... He wasn't sure what to make of that.
He tried to settle her into a more comfortable position, and he ended up cradling her head against his chest. He brushed a few stray wisps of her long hair out of her face. Her hair was soft like feather down, and he felt a little unclean for touching it in this situation, so he stopped.
Her breath was beginning to warm a patch of his dress shirt; it was making him very uncomfortable. He nibbled his lip and glanced around the cafe. There was an old couple in the corner giving him funny looks, but that was people over a certain age, really. It wasn't like he was kissing her in public!
"Wake up, princess," he murmured.
A few minutes later and she was still out. His stomach began to growl. He hadn't eaten much at lunch—he hadn't an appetite after his confession—and with no dinner... He awkwardly reached over the table, grabbed some of the lemon cake, and ate it.
Finally he felt her weight shift. He tilted his head down to find her blinking up at him. "Yosuke-kun...?" Her eyes unfocused as she tried to recall where she was.
"You had some wicked coffee and passed out," he explained. "Are you all right?"
"I got a new skill card," she reported. She smiled, but her expression was sad. "I'm sorry. I shouldn't have had that coffee."
"Don't be sorry," he said. "You're free to order whatever you want."
Now her smile became genuine. "Thanks for watching over me."
"It's all—" he began, but then his stomach growled again. She could probably feel the rumble since she was still resting against his chest. How embarrassing! "Lemon cake only goes so far," he feebly joked. "I wonder if my mom has any leftovers."
"Oh, she was going to make kakuni, but then I told her I wasn't going to be home for dinner. She usually cooks a lot of food. She's trying to fatten me up, or something."
"You are a little thin," she said. Her nails picked at his dress shirt, teasing him.
With a soft sigh, she sat up so that she was no longer leaning her weight on him. He was somewhat disappointed that she'd moved, but he had been starting to lose feeling in one of his legs.
"Let's get you home, I guess," he said. He began to scoot out of the booth, but her hand lightly grasped his arm, and despite the fact that she employed no force, he stopped in mid-rise as if cuffed. "Huh?"
"Kakuni sounds good," she said.
He stared at her. "...Huh?"
"Maybe... call your mom and ask if she made extra."
He shook his head and pulled out of her grasp to hold up his hands defensively. "C-come on, you don't wanna meet my mom! I mean, it's my mom!"
"We're both hungry," she said, raising her chin. "I'm not afraid to meet her."
She was staring him down like it was a challenge. A challenge that he totally lost. He brought out his phone and went outside to make the call.
"Sweetie?" his mom said. "I didn't expect you'd call. Did everything go well?"
"Err," he said. "I guess...?"
"I'm so sorry, sweetie!" she said in response to his hesitation, assuming the worst for some reason. "When you come home I'll have some cookies ready, okay?"
He rolled his eyes although no one was around to see the action. "Mom! It's okay. Umm, see, we didn't have dinner, so..."
Yosuke almost wondered if the heat present on his face was permanent. He toyed with his kakuni with his chopsticks, violating various etiquette rules, because he was just too embarrassed to listen to his mom and his girlfriend talk.
"Thank you for allowing us to come over, Hanamura-san," his date said politely.
"Think nothing of it!" his mom replied. The woman waited several beats, and then asked, "So how long have you known Yo-chan?"
"Mooooom," Yosuke moaned, burying his face in his hands, both for the use of that nickname and for starting up what was most certainly going to be an interrogation.
But the Investigation Team leader was taking it all in stride. An amused smile decorated her features. "Since the term started. He sits behind me."
"And I suppose he poked your back with a pen every day until he got your attention."
"Mom..." Yosuke protested again.
"He had an Incident in middle school like that," his mom confided in a whisper, leaning forward over the table and hiding her mouth with a hand conspiratorially, as if that would stop him from overhearing. The capital 'I' in 'incident' was unmistakable.
He would have left the table right then, but he couldn't very well abandon his girlfriend like that...
"He hasn't been that bad," she said, "but I do have to whisper him the answers in class sometimes."
His mom reached over, put a hand on his shoulder, and shook him. "You need to be better than that!"
His answer was a groan.
"But I like Yosuke-kun," the dark-haired girl said. "He's reliable. He always has my back. He's maybe a little overprotective sometimes, but I don't see that as a fault."
She was talking about his behavior in the TV more than anything else. He did tend to get inordinately worried whenever she got hit by a Shadow's attack. In his defense, he worried about Chie and Yukiko, too, but it was different with her. He told himself that it was because she was the leader and therefore the most important, but... really, he'd held a flame for her for quite a while now. He wasn't even sure when it had started.
"Well, I'm glad," his mom said, giving him a significant look that said, 'I don't know what you're doing, but keep up the good work!' "Are you from Inaba? I'm sure you know that we aren't."
"I'm not," she replied. "I'm not actually 'from anywhere,' really. My family moves a lot. In fact, that's the reason I'm here. My parents are overseas, so I'm staying with my uncle and cousin, and I'll be leaving at the end of the school year."
"Oh, so you're only here for the year," his mom murmured. Now she was giving Yosuke a different look, one that he purposely avoided by forcing down some pork.
"I like it here," she volunteered. "Everyone's been kind to me. I haven't had any trouble fitting in."
"I'm glad," his mom said, smiling kindly. She turned to Yosuke suddenly. "Yo-chan! Why aren't you eating? Isn't he way too skinny? He never eats even half of what I serve him!"
"Because you try to feed me enough for three people!" he protested. "I mean, look at this." He pushed his pork-laden plate forward. "There's no way I could eat all this!"
The dark-haired girl began to laugh. He began to glare at her, annoyed, but... seeing her here, having a good time... His expression morphed into something else instead.
When he noticed his mom tilting her head and raising an eyebrow at him, he blushed and began to eat his food just to avoid catching her eyes.
Since it was rather late at night by the end of the meal, Yosuke offered to walk his date home, and she accepted. He was glad—he really needed a break from his mom. In fact, his mom was still giving him an embarrassingly knowing look even as he left the house.
They weren't all that far down the street he lived on when he began to apologize. "I'm sorry about that. My mom's nosy. She's always like this. Always asking about my friends and stuff..."
"What's your dad like?" she asked.
He shrugged. "Err... Typical Japanese dad, really. Married to his job. It's why you didn't meet him. He's probably working late at Junes."
"Ah," she said. "I think I understand. But don't worry about your mom. She seems nice. I'm glad to have met her."
Yosuke didn't answer. He wondered what his dad would think of his girlfriend. He might not care either way. Maybe he'd ask if she wanted to work at Junes. Yeah, that sounded like him.
They walked together, and before he knew it, they were turning into the street she lived on. She slowed down her pace, apparently reluctant to go home. "Yosuke-kun...?"
She grabbed his hand and held it as she walked forward. "Thanks for taking me out."
"It wasn't much of a date," he muttered. "I wish things had gone a little better."
"Things could have gone a lot worse," she pointed out. "It could have rained. You could have lost your wallet. We could have run into one of our friends who didn't realize that we're on a date." She paused. "Besides..."
"Besides what?" he prompted when she hesitated to continue.
She stopped walking, and linked by her hand, he stopped walking, too. She moved in close to him, a dusting of pink coloring her cheeks. "Besides," she repeated, "I like you, too."
His stomach felt like it did a flip. He leaned forward, and slowly, very slowly, their lips met in a kiss. It was soft and sweet and it took a car going by to make them pull apart and continue on their way.
They reached the Dojima residence and lingered on the doorstop. "I had a good time," she told him.
"You don't have to lie," he said. His tone was teasing, but there was a trace of bitterness in there since he was still upset over everything.
"No, I did," she insisted. "But next time, I'll make the reservations. And I won't order that coffee. And you'll meet my mother instead, and... I'm kidding about that last one."
"I was gonna say!" He laughed. He held up her hand in both of his. "U-umm, well, I guess I should say goodnight. I really—"
He shut up because she was hugging him now, and looking up at him, and... His face felt like it was burning, and his heart pounded in his chest. He wondered if she could hear it. Heck, she was so close, she could probably feel it.
I might more than like you, he thought.
The front door opened, and they turned their heads as one to face it.
"Big sis...?" Nanako-chan was peeking out at them.
Yosuke whispered, "I'll call you."
She nodded before pulling away from him to turn her attention to her little cousin. "Nanako, I'm home. Let's go inside."
He waved at the little girl before the door closed, leaving him alone on the doorstop. He could still hear the six-year-old excitedly asking her 'big sis' about her date until they moved away from the door. He chuckled to himself, because it was the same interrogation that he'd endure from his mom when he got home.
...Which he should be doing about now. With a soft sigh, he began to head on his way, the faint taste of watermelon on his lips telling him that he really couldn't complain about how it went, all things considered.
Summary: Kanji just wants to be friends with Koromaru. Is that so much to ask for?
Author's notes: This is a crosspost from AO3 and ffnet.
This takes place in the Persona Q universe, I guess around the fourth dungeon. No real spoilers, though. Every time Koromaru backs away from Kanji in PQ, it makes me really sad. I haven't finished the game yet, so I don't know if they do eventually become friends. But as it is, I just had to write this!
Ken Amada walked down the third years' hall of this pseudo-Yasogami High School and stopped in his tracks. He hadn't expected to see Kanji up here. The bleached-blond boy had his back turned to him; he seemed to be looking at the prizes for one of the game booths. They were a bunch of stuffed animals.
Ken was about to offer to play the game with him when he heard the older boy sniffle and wipe his nose on his sleeve. He frowned, because Kanji was too tall to have any real reason to cry. "What's the matter?" he asked.
Kanji jumped in surprise. Then he turned away quickly to hide the tears he was wiping away. "Nothin'," he answered, his voice dry. "It's nothin'. You wouldn't understand."
"Oh, an adult problem, huh?" Ken asked, his tone bitter. He was being treated like a kid, once again...
"Nah, it's not that, but..." Kanji sighed heavily. "You're friends with Koromaru, so..."
Ken's brow knit in puzzlement. "Huh?"
"When an animal doesn't like you," Kanji said, "you can't help but feel like maybe something's wrong with you."
Kanji avoided Ken's eyes, and his shoulders were hunched over. He wiped his eyes one more time and took a long moment to continue in a voice so unexpectedly subdued that Ken had to strain to hear him. "I thought, after meetin' Senpai and joining his team, that I was starting to get everything together, but then Koromaru ran away from me like that earlier when I offered to walk him, and damn, it really hurt. Set me back a bit."
"You want to be friends with Koromaru?" Ken asked.
"Y-yeah," Kanji admitted. "But I guess I'm too big an' scary, huh?" He looked down at his feet, dejected. "It's all well and good to tell me, 'He just needs to get used to you,' but how is that gonna happen when I never get any chance to be near him?"
Ken looked up at him. "Listen, Kanji-san. Koromaru is a very special dog, and sometimes he seems like he's human, but he really is a dog. You'll have to befriend him like you would any other animal."
"H-how?" Kanji asked.
"With treats!" Ken declared. He pulled some out of his pocket and handed them to Kanji. "Here, these are some of the treats Shinjiro-san uses. Oh, but just having them isn't enough. Even with them, he might not come up to you immediately. You'll have to be patient."
"I can be patient, yeah," Kanji said, his expression brightening. "You can't knit a sweater overnight."
"Listen, then," Ken told him. "Here's the plan!"
Kanji was so nervous while waiting for Ken to fetch Koromaru that he accidentally snapped one of the dog treats that he was fidgeting with in half. They were little bone-shaped cookies and he had a suspicion that Shinjiro had made them himself.
It wasn't long before Ken returned with the dog in tow. However, the dog stopped several feet away from Kanji. Kanji bit his lip. Yeah, this was going well already. He should probably give up while he was ahead.
And the sympathy in the kid's eyes wasn't doing anything for his self-esteem. "Err," Ken said. "Koro! Kanji-san has something for you."
"Y-yeah," said Kanji. "You're such a good boy, so, err, here's a treat." Kanji held out one of the cookies in the tips of his fingers and offered it to the dog.
Of course, Koromaru made no move to take it from him, but the dog was eyeing it with interest. He woofed, possibly in complaint.
But Ken had warned him this might happen and had given him a plan of action. Kanji slowly set the treat on the ground, and then backed away several steps.
The dog looked around the hallway, as if sensing some sort of trap, and eventually stepped forward, sniffed the cookie, and then began to eat the cookie.
Kanji let out his breath in relief. At least the dog would accept treats handled by him! It was a start, right?
"Oh, Koro, you're making me hungry!" Ken stated haltingly. "I think I'll go get a snack of my own. I'll be right back, okay?"
Koromaru wagged his tail, but since he was still munching on the cookie, he didn't follow the boy when he left.
Now Kanji was alone with the dog and he wasn't really sure what he should do next. 'Talk to him, quietly!' Ken had stressed.
"Y-you like that, huh?" Kanji tried. "They smell pretty good." Kanji lifted one of the cookies to his nose, but he didn't consider eating it. This Culture Festival had a decent enough variety of food, so he wasn't starving. "Y'know, I thought you might've been the one who took Chie-senpai's meat jelly."
Done with his treat, Koromaru turned around and looked after the hallway Ken had gone down.
"Err, b-but I bet even you have standards, don't'cha? I love meat as much as the next person, but you gotta draw the line somewhere, right?"
Kanji scratched his head and sighed. Koromaru wasn't even listening to him. This clearly wasn't working.
"W-well, I got another treat, so..." He placed it on the ground and stepped away again. Koromaru turned his head and watched him for a moment, then curiously approached the treat and began to eat it.
Kanji leaned against the wall behind him and then slid down it until he was sitting on the floor, his long legs stretched out in front of him. He watched Koromaru eat from the distance. The dog was a beautiful shiba inu, wasn't he? Even with those albino red eyes. His coat looked well taken care of. He probably had Ken to thank for that. A boy and his dog. They made a good duo, that's for sure.
Koromaru finished the cookie and was now looking at Kanji with faint hope. Kanji held out another at arm's length, but Koromaru was still reluctant to approach him, so Kanji set it on the floor and slid it towards him. The dog intercepted it with a paw and then flipped it up and caught it in his mouth.
"Bet you miss having the grass under your feet," Kanji murmured. "Digging in the dirt, and sniffing the breeze. Being trapped in a school, it's no place for a dog. It's the last place I wanna be, too."
Though Koromaru was still eating the cookie with relish, maybe his eyes glanced at Kanji for a second.
"You'd like Inaba," Kanji continued. "We got lots of fields to run through, and lots of cats to chase, though don't tell Senpai that. He's a cat person."
Koromaru wrinkled his nose as if he understood.
"Yeah, I know, right?" Kanji smiled awkwardly, and the dog wagged his tail once. "You know, Chie-senpai has a dog. His name's Muku. I bet you'd be friends. He loves going for walks along the river. Oh, you done? Have another." Kanji slid another cookie towards the dog. "Don't eat it so fast, man, I only got one more."
Koromaru woofed softly in acknowledgment.
Kanji leaned his head back against the wall. "I wonder what's goin' on back home, though. Did we all, like, disappear suddenly? Did time stop or something? I mean, you guys are from two years ago. I don't get it at all, but... I know Senpai's worried about Nanako-chan, and I'm... I'm getting worried about my Ma."
The dog whined, and Kanji continued. "Yeah, my Ma runs a textile shop, and I help her out a lot. Hope she doesn't think I got into any trouble. Well, I guess we did get into trouble, didn't we?" He sighed. "I'm tired of worryin' her so much, y'know? She's worked real hard to raise me on her own, and what thanks do I give her? Nothin' but the police knockin' on her door..."
Kanji closed his eyes with another sigh. "Tch," he said. "I'm a real piece of work, ain't I? It's no wonder you don't wanna hang out with me."
A long moment later, he felt weight on his outstretched leg. He opened an eye to see Koromaru tentatively setting a paw on him. The dog was looking at his face.
"Wh-what? Oh, do you want the other cookie?" Kanji opened his hand and slowly brought the last one up towards Koromaru's snout.
But the dog nosed Kanji's hand away, snubbing the treat completely. Kanji blinked, and the dog pushed forward until he was sitting quite comfortably in Kanji's lap. Kanji raised his arms in alarm, wondering what was going on here. Then the dog looked up at him expectantly.
Kanji's eyes widened in realization. "Oh! You mean... C-can I pet you?"
Koromaru licked Kanji's chin.
Kanji slowly brought his arms down and hugged the dog, careful not to hug him too tightly. And this time, the tears that sneaked out of his eyes were brought on by happiness.
Rating: T (for suggestive themes)
Category: General, but mentions of M/M
Summary: Kanji finds the 'goods' in Yu's room by complete accident.
Author's notes: This is a crosspost from AO3 and ffnet.
Okay, so it's not really the 'goods' but it's close enough! Rated mostly for themes, not content.
Kanji was left alone in Yu's room. His senpai wouldn't be gone long. He was just walking Nanako-chan to her little friend's house down the road.
Kanji was supposed to be finishing up the algebra problems his senpai had left him with, but dammit he'd never been that good at math this complicated. Calculating the cost of thirty spools of 'red #7' embroidery thread, sure, he could do that in a heartbeat. Just business as usual. But put letters that stand for numbers into the equation and Kanji found it a little hard to follow.
He leaned back in Yu's desk chair, which was a bad idea because the top of the wooden chair dug painfully into his back. Tch, sometimes being so tall was a pain in the ass.
In his stretch, he noticed his senpai's bookshelf. Kanji wasn't much of a reader, but there were magazines in a neat little pile up there. He needed a break, so he lazily reached his arm out and pulled the magazines down.
Fishing, more fishing, women's health (??), a TV guide, even more fishing, and, oh, Daruma magazine. A kimono on the cover of this one caught Kanji's eye. Without further ado, he opened up the magazine and flipped through it, though he wondered why his senpai kept around an art magazine that was published in English...
A folded piece of paper fell out. He scrambled to grab it before it fell to the floor. Tch, it was probably just a subscription form, anyway—
Hmm? No, it was an essay of some sort in Yu-senpai's handwriting. He recognized that deliberate script, though the pen strokes seemed to be rushed near the end. As if the writer had been excited...
And then Kanji noticed the content of the 'essay' and his face turned crimson. S-senpai was writing love letters or somethin'?
'Yu-kun,' he whispered in my ear, his breath hot and promising. I moaned as his fingers slipped under my waistband and
And Kanji choked out an embarrassed and surprised cough as the story swiftly took an erotic turn.
Kanji blinked and glanced at the door, gauging whether his senpai would be back soon.
He was still reading it—actually, re-reading it—when Yu walked into the room. He didn't even hear the guy return home because he was so, uh... 'lost in the story.'
"Sh-shit!" Kanji swore, and scrambled to fold the story up and shove it back in the magazine, but it was already too late, he'd definitely been caught. "S-senpai... Uhh..."
His silver-haired senpai blinked at him. "What," Yu began. Then he recognized the magazine even though Kanji was trying to hide the title under his arm. "Oh! Oh... You found that." His face flushed a little at that, like 'pink #5' fabric.
"I'm sorry, senpai!" Kanji exclaimed. "I didn't mean to, uh..."
Senpai pulled the magazine from his unresisting hands and took out the paper, unfolded it, and glanced over it. His blush deepened to 'red #9.'
He looked directly at Kanji. "You read this?"
Kanji considered lying only for a second. "Yeah," he admitted.
"I wrote this."
"I could tell." Yu had been the main character, after all.
Yu chuckled and scratched the back of his head, an action he rarely performed. "I'm sorry you had to see that. Embarrassing, huh?"
"Y-yeah," Kanji said uncertainly. "I didn't know you were a writer, senpai. Or that you, err..."
"Like guys?" Yu finished. "Actually, I have been meaning to talk to you about this."
"Wh-what do you mean by that!?" Kanji demanded, hands clenching into fists. The chair squeaked under him as he tensed up in it.
"Kanji," Yu said, not unkindly. "I'm comfortable now with my sexuality. But a year ago, I wasn't. It's not easy to have doubts—"
"I ain't got any doubts!" Kanji declared, raising his fists defensively.
"Kanji," Yu said again.
Kanji let his indignation fade away. He lowered his fists until they were resting on his knees. This was Yu-senpai, after all. The guy who'd saved his ass just a month ago.
...from his queer-ass Shadow.
"You like guys?" Kanji eventually asked.
"Yep," said Yu, apparently completely unashamed. "Can't explain it. I just do."
"How'd you... know?" Kanji asked in as hushed a voice as he could manage.
"I struggled to figure it out," Yu admitted. "Because I kept denying it, telling myself, 'It's not right,' and fighting it. Threw myself into relationships with girls, trying to prove to myself that was what I wanted. It... wasn't." His voice was a whisper at the end, and the pained look on his face was equally painful to look at.
Kanji couldn't think of anything to say.
"So," Yu continued more brightly. "If you find yourself liking, say, a guy... There's nothing wrong with it, Kanji. And, take your time. You don't have to figure it out right away."
Unbidden, Kanji's mind turned to Naoto Shirogane. That damned cute detective who made his stomach somersault into knots so complicated that probably only Naoto could unravel them anyway. Stupid kid and his stupid fashion sense. What kind of teenager wore plaid? And looked good in it?
Kanji hadn't seen the boy in a while and it was driving him absolutely nuts.
"Ye-yeah?" Kanji managed to say through a very dry throat.
Yu clapped him on the shoulder. "Yeah. And you can always talk to me, all right?"
"Y-yeah. Sure, senpai." Kanji paused. "Uh, about that story..."
"Mm?" Yu turned the story over in his hands. The dirty words popped out and caught Kanji's eye, to his private embarrassment. "Maybe I should work on the sequel."
"Wouldn't mind readin' it," Kanji said, the words exiting his mouth without any input at all from his brain.
Yu smiled at him and patted his shoulder. "Little steps, Kanji. Little steps."
[Author's Notes: Someone suggested that I write a 'Yosuke finds the goods' story, but there are already enough of them out there. So I thought, why not Kanji instead? But him finding a gay porn magazine is too obvious... I've been writing an embarrassing amount of porn lately, so I thought maybe Yu writes porn, too. Self-insert porn!