Disclaimer: All belongs to Yoko Matsushita, the genius that she is. I only play and put them back when I’m done.
Summary: Tsuzuki’s eyes were always shining, but Tatsumi knew that they held more than what he saw.
Tatsumi’s eyes scanned his partner from behind clean lenses, Tsuzuki’s lips parted in a silent whisper, a continuous stream of “no, no, no.” Tatsumi closed his eyes and tried to both expel and drown in the horrible-wonderful sound of the sobs, the soft whimpers that made those shoulders tremble, those hands pulling at the decapitated teddy bear clutched in pale fingers. The blood was everywhere, staining Tsuzuki’s face and hands, and Tatsumi had to admit that it was a beautiful sight. The face of an angel, distorted by death.
Tsuzuki’s breath hitched once, one hand coming up in an attempt to wipe the dark red blood out of his bright violet eyes, but it only smeared, like paint on a canvass. “No… no… no…”
“Tsuzuki-san,” Tatsumi whispered, fingers threading through Tsuzuki’s blood-damp brown hair. In response, Tsuzuki merely whimpered again, leaning into the touch like a lost child deprived of physical affection. “Tsuzuki, we have to leave now. We have to go.”
Tsuzuki’s legs moved, shoes squishing in the puddle surrounding him. “Tatsumi… no…” Tears rolled down his cheeks, making clean tracks through the red that dripped from his chin. “Oh God, no…”
“We have to leave,” Tatsumi repeated, chest tightening at the sight of Tsuzuki so broken, like a shattered wine glass that seemed so safe on its balance only moments ago. “Tsuzuki, please… don’t cry…”
“Tatsumi!” Tsuzuki held the bear close to him, stuffing sticking in the drying blood on his open shirt. He sobbed, shoulders shaking, beautiful eyes shining with tears waiting to be shed. “No…” His breath came in short, shaky gasps, sobs wrenching their way out of his throat.
Tatsumi took a handful of Tsuzuki’s hair. This was too much. The child still lay face-down in the puddle of crimson, eyes probably empty and glossed over, while Tsuzuki’s hands squeezed the head of the toy that had belonged to the victim.
The boy had been dead for no more than a second when Tsuzuki had so easily broken, falling to the floor and sobbing out Tatsumi’s name. Tatsumi tried to remain calm at the sight of the tears, as the image of Tsuzuki’s tear-streaked face burned itself of Tatsumi’s memory.
I made him cry again.
It was a familiar sight, almost too familiar. A woman with a pretty face and a soft voice, long hair falling in front of dark blue eyes, eyes filled to the brim with tears.
It’s all your fault, Seiichiro! You broke me. You killed me.
You killed me…
Tatsumi shook his head, his heart skipping a beat at the memory of his mother. He’d made her miserable, he’d made her cry and brought her nothing but pain and sorrow. He wasn’t able to handle it, just like he wasn’t able to handle this now, and he’d fixed the situation the only way he knew how:
He’d ended her life.
This wasn’t fair.
Tsuzuki’s eyes were so pretty when they shined, like sparkling gems with secrets behind them. Laughter, a soft “I love you”, even if it was only due to excitement of a promised dessert. Tsuzuki had such a nice voice, cheerful and always on the verge of laughter. Nothing like his mother’s, really…
But then again, the laughter was so empty now, those eyes oddly sad, that voice always low. Tatsumi could see the sadness accumulating beneath the surface, and as the weeks dragged on, it only became worse. Tsuzuki would cry more often when he thought that Tatsumi wasn’t watching, forcing a smile when he knew that Tatsumi was. It wasn’t fair of Tsuzuki to become more and more like the woman in Tatsumi’s nightmares, with tear-filled eyes and blame in the whispering voice.
It wasn’t fair.
I didn’t want to kill you.
“Tatsumi,” Tsuzuki whispered, as more and more sadness became visible in the once-beautiful eyes. In truth, they continued to be beautiful even when they were shining with tears, the lashes darkened with the tears that he’d tried to hold in. “Tatsumi… I couldn’t… I’m sorry…”
Tatsumi’s eyes wandered over to the boy again. Decapitated, just like the toy, his head severed and half a foot away from his body. He was probably no more than ten years old, and the Shinigami would have to be gone before his parents and sister showed up.
“I… I don’t even know his n-name,” Tsuzuki sobbed. “Tatsumi… no… I couldn’t just…”
Tatsumi swallowed and pulled a little at Tsuzuki’s hair, making Tsuzuki wince. “We have to go. Now.”
Tsuzuki nodded, and he did eventually obey, rising from the floor to leave the bloodstained bedroom and the corpse of the unnamed child.
He took the bear with him.
The bar was dim, and Tatsumi could smell the alcohol, sharp and bitter in the air, as he rested his arm on the sticky bar-top. The barman kept looking at him, silently asking him to buy a drink so that he could stop waiting with his hands on his hips for the man with the purple eyes to buy another.
Tsuzuki did, though. He downed shot after shot after shot, finishing off an entire bottle of Akita gin before the sun had even set. He looked slightly sick, eyes trying like an elderly man with arthritis to focus on Tatsumi and mouth trying to force another smile that would pull at Tatsumi’s heart.
Tatsumi watched with mild interest, not interfering because on the whole, it didn’t really matter. True, it wasn’t healthy for one to consume so much alcohol at one time, and the dose would be fatal for a mortal man, but they weren’t mortal anymore. Tatsumi had to wonder if Tsuzuki ever was, with eyes the color of irises, his voice lined with sadness as he spoke of his sister.
“You shouldn’t drink so much, Tsuzuki-san,” Tatsumi told him, not really expecting the other man to take his advice. He never did. An unhealthy eater, an alcoholic, and suffering from chronic depression, Tsuzuki would never really listen. He’d nod, eyes glazed over as they searched the room for more interesting things to do, but he wouldn’t listen.
Tsuzuki’s mouth curved into a small smile. “I know.”
Tatsumi admired the way Tsuzuki’s fingers looked through the glass, the color of freshly-churned butter when you saw them through the beverage. Tsuzuki always had a talent of being pretty, almost a gift, his hair artistically mussed, his eyes permanently shining no matter how dim the light was.
“Maybe we should go home.” Tatsumi rested his hand on Tsuzuki’s shoulder, trying for a friendly gesture and his heart sank when his partner flinched at the touch.
Abusive. He knew that their relationship was nothing but abuse, hurting one another until the relationship would eventually fall apart. It was far too late to repair the damage done, but it wasn’t too late to stop more hurt from happening. Tatsumi was a coward for making Tsuzuki stay with him merely because Tatsumi loved to catch the rare moments when Tsuzuki would genuinely smile, without force and sadness behind it.
Tsuzuki nodded slightly, setting down his now-empty glass to emit a small sigh.
“Just one more and I’ll be done.”
“Tatsumi… What did you say?”
Tsuzuki’s cheerful expression fell into a look of slight confusion, lips parted and eyes wide, eyebrows raised. Tatsumi sighed, his breath heaving as his chest tightened horribly again.
“I’m sorry, Tsuzuki. I’m not coming with you on this mission.” Tatsumi had a difficult time even looking at him as he said it, the guilt setting in.
Tsuzuki tried to smile, but failed. “That’s okay. It’s an easy one anyway. I can handle it… alone…” He paused, his mouth still trying to give that false sense of happiness when his eyes gave him away. “I’ll see you next time.”
“No,” Tatsumi said, his tone raising in an attempt to make Tsuzuki understand. He didn’t want to do this. He wanted to stay, wanted to make sure that Tsuzuki was in his sight, but those eyes…
Tsuzuki’s sad eyes, always deep with emotions that nobody could comprehend.
I hate you. Don’t come near me, and whatever you do, don’t look at me with those eyes.
“I’m not coming with you next time either…”
Don’t look at me like that.
“Or the time after that…”
“…or the time after that.”
I love you.
“I’m never working with you again.”
He waited for the explosion, the flood of tears, the sobs to escape the man that Tatsumi had called “partner” for the past three months. Instead, he received a long and silent pause, in which he could almost feel the sadness in Tsuzuki’s heart expanding, taking over his soul.
Tsuzuki’s eyes were still shining even when there was certainly nothing to shine about at the moment. “Oh. Okay.”
“Tsuzuki…” Tatsumi began, but Tsuzuki waved an impatient hand, his mouth smiling again.
“No. It’s fine, really… I’m used to this sort of thing.”
Tatsumi stared for the longest time, trying to understand the meaning behind that smile.
Tsuzuki’s smile faded, and he turned to go. “Sorry for making your life hell, Tatsumi.”
I love you…
“Tsuzuki…” Tatsumi said, reaching for Tsuzuki’s hand. They brushed fingers, but then the other man walked out on him, his eyes no longer shining but a dull, empty violet, his steps hollow in the otherwise empty hallway.
“Be with me,” Tsuzuki had once said, his tone as empty as those wide purple demon eyes. “Hold me. Don’t make me be alone. You can hit me, you can hurt me, but please don’t ever make me be alone.”
Tatsumi had tried. He’d held Tsuzuki, hugged him, caressed him like a dead child’s toy, trying to give him something resembling the love that he felt for Tsuzuki. He had tried.
But to be with Tsuzuki – to be around him, touched by him, to see those tears glistening in his eyes – only reminded Tatsumi of his own pain. The pain that brought back the memories of the horrific sadness that had led up to his mother’s death and eventually his own.
I can’t stand to be with you.
Whenever they passed in the hallways now, Tatsumi could see the genuine happiness in those eyes, a happiness that had never been for Tatsumi. Hisoka was Tsuzuki’s lifeline now, something to anchor him down and keep him from sobbing his heart out on a bloodstained floor.
And Tatsumi, though he still loved Tsuzuki and wished for Tsuzuki’s happiness, had to admire from afar.
I can’t stand to see your sorrow.