Theme: Lyrics # 6. Lyrics are located at the beginning of the fic.
Warnings: Sap, angst.
Pairing: Tora (alice nine.)/Aoi (The GazettE)
Disclaimer: Standard disclaimer applies.
Summary: Tora had always been his rock—had always been the right person to lean on when life threw him a curveball. Now it’s Aoi’s turn to be Tora’s rock.
Comments: Written for 10_encounters. The lyrics, which are at the beginning of the fic, are from BLOOD’s Sensual Moon. NOT porn, OMG. No, I went in an entirely different direction with this. I actually wrote this weeks ago, but have been trying to catch up with posting fics that have been finished for longer… so. Yeah. This fic deals with Tora’s injury, and how both he and Aoi feel regarding it. I hope you all like this fic. ^_^
a pained sigh
Intoxicated by the flow between our entwined bodies, we comfort each other
Aoi had always considered Tora to be one of the strongest people he’d ever met. So unlike Aoi himself, who often felt anything but strong. Tora had always been his rock—had always been the right person to lean on when life threw him a curveball. Tora had never complained and had never asked for anything in return (it was just Tora’s way of doing things), though Aoi had always done his best to make sure his lover was content.
Tora was always quiet about things that bothered him, too. He never complained, and if anything seemed out of place to him, he never made a big deal out of it. Perhaps some considered him aloof, but Aoi always knew that that wasn’t it at all—Tora didn’t think he was better than anyone else, he simply preferred silence most of the time.
He even kept his pain to himself. Aoi – and everyone else in Tora’s life – noticed that he was taking painkillers, and noticed the grimaces that Tora would make when he thought that no-one else was looking. But, being the stubborn man that he was, he didn’t go to the doctor. He didn’t request a break from work. He simply took more pills and continued on, working as hard as he ever had.
When Aoi expressed concern and tried to convince Tora that he needed to see the doctor and take it easy, Tora brushed it aside with a kiss on the forehead, a broad smile, and reassurances that all would be well and that he was really okay.
That didn’t stop Aoi from worrying, though. He knew that Tora was a strong individual, but he also knew that Tora was a very stubborn individual, and sometimes, that wasn’t a good combination.
Even knowing that, Aoi wasn’t anywhere near prepared for the phone call that he received on Saturday afternoon. The call was from Shou, and even before Aoi answered, he knew something had to be wrong.
Soon enough, his suspicion was confirmed.
“Uhm, Aoi-kun…I don’t… I don’t know how to say this, but Tora-shi… he’s gotten worse. We had to cancel the live—he went to the doctor and his arm… he can’t use it right now.” Shou sounded as worried as Aoi now felt.
“Will you quit the dramatics, Shou? You’ll give my boyfriend a heart attack. Give me the damn phone.” Tora’s voice. It was so good to hear his voice.
But Aoi couldn’t seem to make the room stop spinning. “Tora-chan, you’re okay?”
“Yeah. I’m fine. I just… I can’t play. Not right now. But I’ll be well soon enough.” Tora did sound fine, but Aoi didn’t buy into it. If Tora couldn’t play, then there had to be something terribly wrong.
“Your arm, though...” Aoi trailed off, trying to find the words that he wanted to say. “For you to not be determined to do the live anyway, you have to be hurt pretty badly, Tora-chan. I know that much. I know how you are. You’re stubborn.”
“I did try to keep going,” Tora admitted after a moment’s silence. “But I wasn’t allowed.”
Aoi licked his dry lips. “Do you… do you want me to come get you?”
Again, Tora brushed off Aoi’s concern: “Don’t be silly. It’s too late, and I’ll be home tomorrow anyway. I’ve been told ten thousand times already to take it easy. And I’ve got a neck brace, so that should help. Really, I’m gonna be okay, Aoi-chan.”
“I’ll come see you tomorrow, then.” Aoi would have preferred going to see him today, right this damn minute, in fact, but Tora had said no. “You won’t be able to get me out of your hair, come tomorrow.”
“I look forward to that.” Tora was smiling. Just a small smile, but Aoi could hear it in his voice. “And I’m sorry if Shou scared you half to death.”
“It’s all right,” Aoi answered softly. “I’m supposed to worry about you.”
Before they said their goodbyes, Tora told Aoi again that he was okay, and that everything would be fine soon. It reminded Aoi of a broken record.
It made him wonder if Tora was trying to reassure him, or if the other guitarist was trying to reassure himself.
As promised, Aoi was at Tora’s place by late-morning the next day. Finding the door unlocked, he let himself in. “Tora-chan?” he called, though softly, not wanting to alarm the other man.
He didn’t find him in the living room or in the kitchen, and he figured the next logical place to try was the bedroom.
That’s where Tora was, lying on his bed, propped up on a few pillows, staring blankly at the far wall. He was wearing the neck brace, and though Aoi knew better than to hope for any immediate improvement, perhaps the neck brace and lots of rest would help. Day by day, perhaps Tora would grow stronger. At least that’s what Aoi was hoping for. He knew he wasn’t the only one with that hope, either—there were the other members of alice nine., and there was the rest of PS Company. Not to mention the fans.
“Tora-chan?” Aoi asked as he approached the bed, his voice whisper-soft. “I’m here now. Is there anything I can do for you?”
Tora didn’t look at him. For several tense seconds, he didn’t even acknowledge Aoi’s presence. He didn’t speak. He simply continued to lay there and stare at the wall. He looked exhausted, like he hadn’t slept well at all for the past few days. That was to be expected, though, wasn’t it?
Finally, Tora said: “I let them down. My bandmates. The fans. I let them down.”
Aoi could have sworn that he felt his heart break at those words. He moved even closer to the bed and reached over, grasping Tora’s right hand and squeezing gently. “You haven’t let anyone down, Tora,” he replied. “You’re hurt. You pushed yourself and kept on pushing until you reached the breaking point. I think you should have stopped before then, and I’m sure the others feel the same way but… They’re worried for you and upset that you’re in pain, but you haven’t let anyone down.”
“I feel like I’ve let you down. I’ve always wanted to be strong for you, Aoi-chan. And now, I’m just… I’m weak.” Tora sighed, and if at all possible, that small exhalation sounded even more pain-filled than his words. Then he fell silent again, blinking rapidly. He was holding back tears.
Aoi had to force words past the lump of emotion clogging his own throat. “You aren’t weak. You’re injured. There’s a big difference. And I….” He trailed off, gingerly sitting on the edge of the bed. “I can be strong for you. I can give you my strength, until you feel like you’ve got all of yours back.”
Though Aoi didn’t feel like a very strong person, he knew that he would have to be, now. For himself and for Tora. He could be strong. He had to be strong.
“I couldn’t even play my guitar. That was terrifying. It still is terrifying. Not being able to do what I’ve always been able to do… it’s like… it feels like my left hand’s been amputated, or something. It’s useless right now, at any rate. Might as well consider it to be non-existent.” Tora closed his eyes. “I hate this. I want to play. I want to be all right again.”
Tora hadn’t said these things on the phone. He had reassured Aoi—had told him that he knew everything would be okay. That Tora was gone now… or perhaps he hadn’t really been there to begin with. Perhaps Tora had only been trying to keep Aoi from worrying so much.
Aoi’s lover was brave, even now. Even when he was mostly failing at keeping his emotions in check. He’d rarely seen this side of Tora. The Tora he was more familiar with was the calm, cool, collected Tora who always said that he was fine and nothing was wrong even when he wasn’t fine and everything was wrong.
Aoi knew that it took strength for Tora to show his feelings like this. It made him love and appreciate the other guitarist even more. “I know you do, Tora-chan. But you have to get better first. Everyone will help you. I’ll help you. I’ll do anything you need me to do. You just get some well-deserved and much-needed rest.”
“Aoi?” Tora asked quietly, opening his eyes. “Can you do something for me, right now?”
“Of course I can,” Aoi replied without hesitation. “Anything.”
“Can you stay in here with me for a little while?” The lone tear that slid down Tora’s cheek did not go unnoticed by Aoi.
And Aoi was certain that the sheer emotion in his own voice did not go unnoticed by Tora. “As long as you want, Tora-chan.”
Aoi then proceeded to move around to the other side of the bed so that he was on Tora’s right side, and he joined Tora, lying down beside him and curling as close to him as he could possibly get. He gingerly slid one leg over both of Tora’s and positioned his arm so that it rested on Tora’s abdomen and chest. “Comfortable? If you’re not, I can reposition and--”
“It’s fine,” Tora interrupted, the fingers of his right hand running lightly up and down Aoi’s side. “It’s better than fine.”
They stayed like that for what could have been hours, limbs entwined. They fell silent, words no longer necessary. Tora quietly held onto Aoi, relying on him, needing him, while Aoi equally as quietly held onto Tora, lending him comfort.
Lending him strength.
Can we say sap? XD Oh, man, angsty fluff. Gotta love it. I’m glad that Tora seems to be doing better, from what I’ve read, but with him being the stubborn man that he is… I don’t know. I still worry. <333333