Other World Wednesday: Closer Than Ever, part 15

OWW

 

Welcome back to Other World Wednesday! For background and an introduction to the story, go here.

 

Disclaimers:

Please remember the characters and world within this story belong Abe-sensei for the manga and Ishihira-sensei for the anime. I do not own anything, nor do I wish to make money off this.

This story is mature and not for under-18’s. It also includes twincest, so be aware.

You can read the previous parts here:

Part 1Part 2Part 3 ♦ Part 4 ♦ Part 5 ♦ Part 6 ♦ Part 7 ♦ Part 8 ♦ Part 9 ♦ Part 10 ♦ Part 11Part 12Part 13Part 14

And without further ado, part fifteen:

 

* * *

It took all Shima had to wrestle her off him. “God dammit, Higurashi-san!” He unceremoniously dumped her onto her butt, then managed to get to his feet. He glared at the woman still sitting on the floor as he dragged his arm across his face to wipe off her kiss.

“What, Shima-kun? Why?” She blinked up at him, looking more than a little confused.

Shima blinked at her. “What part of “no” don’t you understand? I said no. I don’t want to kiss you. I don’t want to have sex with you. I don’t want to do anything like that with you. We’re not even dating, for fuck’s sake.”

“But… we don’t have to date for that, right?”

“I do.” Shima closed his eyes and took a breath. “You know, it doesn’t matter. I’m not doing this, not now. You need to get your stuff and get out.” By the time he was done, he was shouting louder than Aki ever did. He couldn’t help it, though. He certainly didn’t like being forced, but the look on Aki’s face before he bolted was a thousand times worse. He looked like he’d been shot. Shima had promised Aki he wouldn’t do something like that and while it wasn’t exactly the same as what had happened with the girl before, it was too damned similar. So Shima could understand all too well why Aki would have reacted. He would have expected more shouting, rather than that look and Shima wasn’t sure why Aki had looked like that, but it didn’t matter.

That look hit Shima like a punch to the gut. It took his normally-calm emotions and threw them into a whirlwind. He was caught between his insides twisting up in fear and hurt and pure fury at the girl still on the floor.

Haru stepped into the room from the direction of the cafe. “What’s up? What’s with all the shouting?”

“I… I have to go get Aki. Can you make sure she leaves?” Shima glared as he pointed at Higurashi.

Haru blinked down at her, then looked up at Shima. He wasn’t sure what Haru saw on his face, but without hesitation or question, Haru nodded once. “Go.”

Shima didn’t wait another second. He wasn’t sure if he touched the floor between his spot by the couch and the genkan. It took every ounce of patience he possessed to stop long enough to actually make sure his shoes were on right, but he did it. He also managed to grab an umbrella before running out the door.

He prayed to every deity in existence that Aki would go where Shima expected him to. Even nearly running, it was taking way too long. He had to wait for traffic to clear before he could cross the street. Then there were too many umbrellas on the sidewalk and he had to try to dodge those. Finally, the path was clear and he could make it into the park.

He’d never been so annoyed with the curving paths of the park. The delay of going around the fences—just a little too high and sharp to jump—was pissing him off. Just one more curve, though, and Shima pushed between the bushes and was standing next to his brother.

Shima squatted next to Aki, taking in the bowed back and shaking shoulders and tried to figure out where to begin. “It wasn’t what—” Shima shook his head. Too damned cliché. “I didn’t want that,” he said instead. “I didn’t kiss her.”

“Bullshit,” Aki said, voice muffled by his arms.

“I didn’t. She kissed me. She pushed me down.” He reached out with one hand but before he could touch Aki’s shoulder, Aki slapped the hand away.

“Don’t. Just…” He shook his head. “I don’t… I shouldn’t give a fuck.”

Shima swallowed, not sure how to take that. The wind kicked up then and despite the bushes and trees, the rain blew sideways for a moment. “Come on, we can talk at home out of the rain.”

“I don’t care.”

“You’ll care when you’re sick.” This time he grabbed Aki’s arm before his brother could fight it. “Let’s go.”

Aki glared up at him then and Shima was taken aback at the pain in Aki’s face. Despite the rain, Shima could clearly make out tear tracks among the raindrops. What the hell?

Shima stared for a moment at the expression, trying to wrap his head around why this reaction from his brother was so strong. Like the comment before about how Aki shouldn’t give a fuck, he didn’t know what to do with this. Taking a breath, Shima pushed the thoughts down firmly. He didn’t know exactly how to read this and they had bigger things to focus on right then, anyway.

“Please?” Shima said, softly.

It took another moment, but finally Aki stood up. He was soaked all the way through. Shima, in fact, was wet too, but he didn’t pay attention to that. He was worried first about getting Aki home.

They stepped out of their clearing and back onto the path. Shima tried to figure out how to begin. “I didn’t—”

“You said we’d talk at home,” Aki reminded him.

That surprised Shima. Aki had never shied away from a fight, never been one to delay it, either. He didn’t know what to do with it, though, so he kept his silence as they walked.

Awkward didn’t begin to describe their walk home. Neither spoke at all, and as they walked, worry, fear, and doubt piled together in Shima’s head. Aki’s reaction, even with the promise Shima had made about the people he tutored, seemed out of proportion.

Aki had never seemed to mind before when Shima had a girlfriend. Shima tried to remember if he’d ever kissed a girl in front of Aki, but he couldn’t seem to come up with a single instance. He hadn’t wanted to see Aki’s girlfriends, but that had been because of his frustrating unrequited feelings. When he thought it through, though, he really couldn’t remember ever seeing Aki so much as kiss any of his girlfriends, but they hadn’t exactly spent every single minute around each other when they’d been dating others, either. Shima frowned at that line of thought, but all it did was frustrate him more.

Gratitude filled him when they stepped into the house. Shima was glad to see Higurashi had left and Haru was nowhere to be found, either. Shima guessed he’d gone back to the cafe.

“We need towels.” Shima  kicked his shoes off quickly and left Aki in the genkan as he hurried to the bathroom, grateful there was one on that floor. He was back in only a moment with towels, one of which he draped over Aki, who had apparently taken off his own shoes.

“I can dry myself,” Aki muttered, making Shima sigh.

“It’s my fault you’re wet.” Shima batted Aki’s hands away and worked on drying his hair.

“I ran out of the house.”

Shima didn’t reply to that directly. Instead, he asked, “why?”

Aki didn’t say anything for a long moment and Shima pulled the towel aside, finally meeting his twin brother’s eyes. Emotions Shima never expected to see from his brother were written clearly on Aki’s face. Naked pain, love… and want were plain to see.

“Aki?” Shima whispered.

But Aki didn’t reply. Instead he ran past Shima and was half way up the stairs before Shima realized what had happened. He chased after his brother, but by the time he caught up, Aki was in his room and the door was closed.

Except Aki hadn’t closed it entirely—though he had attempted to lock it—and Shima took advantage of that. He pushed the door open and stepped into the room.

Aki sat in the corner, once more curled in a ball, his face in his hands.

Why was this so big? What about this hit Aki so hard?

Shima stared at him for a long moment, the gears turning in his head. Could it be…? Was there a chance that… Aki felt the same way he did?

Ren’s voice piped up in the back of Aki’s head. He’d never hate you. Did he risk it? I don’t think Aki would react like that… There had to be another reason for this reaction, but Shima couldn’t come up with anything no matter how much he grappled for the answer.

His heart pounded as he squatted in front of Aki. He swallowed hard, his stomach twisting into some rather impressively complicated knots. If he was wrong, if Ren was wrong… he’d lose not only his brother, but possibly his whole family.

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