Silent Melody

by Talya Firedancer

He has a key to the apartment and he can just walk in and so he does, stepping out of his shoes into a dark and silent place. He weighs the keys in his palm for a moment before slipping them into his pocket. He’s had keys before, tipped into his hand by pretty ladies with fake smiles and speculative eyes. His brother’s leavings. This key is different.

There is a place for him here.

He knows the habits of this place and he walks into the apartment to the furthest place, the study at the back of the loft where thin light shines beneath the crack of the door. Now he can hear something. He waits a moment. It’s a thread of a capella melody, the vibrancy of a remarkable tenor coming through with low intensity.

He weighs the bag in his hand a moment, debates interrupting, then opens the door. This is one treasure that won’t wait.

The song breaks off upon his entrance and he is sorry for it. Brilliant as he is on stage, an idol striding in hammered light with constellations of sound at his fingertips, Ryuuichi at home and improvising is the full measure of prodigy. The dark head bent so intently over the work desk lifts; the seated figure swivels.

“Tatsuha!” Ryuuichi’s expression is all welcome gladness.

“I didn’t mean to interrupt,” Tatsuha begins, but this is not precisely true. Where there is a chance of seeing him, Tatsuha can’t wait. There’s this one person who can do this to him.

“It’s okay, I was writing a love song.” A frown flits over Ryuuichi’s face and refuses to settle. “Now that you’re here maybe I’ll get new ideas.”

Breath lodges inside him, waiting for the moment he can exhale. This feeling, there’s nothing like it. And even now he’s not sure Ryuuichi knows how weighted his words are, how much... “I brought you chocolate crepes.”

The light in his face before is now pure joy. “Tatsuha! You DO know the way to my heart!” Ryuuichi rises from his chair, setting the seat spinning round and round with a careless hand.

...How much he means to him.

“Oof.” Tatsuha fields an armful of Ryuuichi and lets him disentangle the bag from his hand. “Yes, well, I know you like–”

“Love!” Ryuuichi corrects. He devours the first and a blissful smile lingers. He remains in the circle of Tatsuha’s arm. If Tatsuha brushed his fingers just so he could trace the chocolate on his smile.

“I know.”

“Mm, now I think I can write the rest.” He sings a brief snatch of melody and leaves Tatsuha breathless again, wanting more, wanting the touch of the song. Tatsuha wishes his English was as good as his brother’s. The lyrics are foreign to him.

“Can I help?” Tatsuha asks, knowing the question is ridiculous. The creative process is internal, the fires come from within. All he can do is wait, without, for results.

“Oh, but you have,” Ryuuichi says gravely, then gives him a smile subtle and sweet. “You brought the rest of the song. So the rest of the night is yours, okay?”

Now Tatsuha dips his head and takes what he wants. Chocolate kisses. “I think I’ll have you,” he says thoughtfully, as if ordering from the menu.

Ryuuichi’s eyes glimmer. “That you can have.”