Tsuzuki dreams. Hisoka just tries to keep them both alive.
Disclaimer: This fanwork borrowed characters and situations from Yami no Matsuei, which is the creation of Matsushita Yoko. No copyright infringement or disrespect are intended.
Distribution: My personal site by default, also my fic journal and The JuOhCho Files. Please ask first if you'd like to archive this elsewhere.
On the bad nights, it's about all Hisoka can do to run the tips of his fingers down the inside of Tsuzuki's arm, tracing the veins and gently-defined musculature. Tsuzuki never says anything, but Hisoka has other ways of listening. He hates the look in Tsuzuki's eyes; the one that tastes like the scars on Tsuzuki's wrist, tastes like guilt and failed redemption.
When it isn't so bad, he can make himself forget long enough to kiss Tsuzuki's scars. Press his tongue against skin, letting the salt and faint leather-bitter impression of Tsuzuki's wristwatch mask the taste he /feels/. This is rare -- more often Hisoka can only brush his fingers across the scars, defiantly, sliding down to the warm hollow of Tsuzuki's palm. He lets his fingers linger there until the nausea writhing at the back of his throat makes him pull away.
On the good nights, Hisoka doesn't let go, cutting off Tsuzuki's half-hearted protests with a sharp tug of Tsuzuki's hair. He knows Tsuzuki's protestations are always for Hisoka's sake. Tsuzuki likes to rest his head on Hisoka's chest, counting the heartbeat that shouldn't be there. Hisoka shields Tsuzuki's eyes with the crook of his arm and lets Tsuzuki's world narrow down to his body, to the flow of blood and warm, moving flesh and hard ribs, where Tsuzuki can stop remembering for a while.
Hisoka's memories are sharp, brittle things. They score him from the inside, cut through his throat to leave a gaping wound, but the bleeding makes him angry. He hates, he fears, he fights back with everything he can muster because Muraki will never -- can never -- win. Each good night is a victory, each bad night ends in a morning where he will start again.
Tsuzuki drowns in his memories, and dreams of roses dyed in blood.
Every night, Hisoka walks the field of nightmares, closing Tsuzuki's eyes from the inside. Tsuzuki's being welcomes him the same way Tsuzuki's body does, pulling him deep with a hunger so boundless that it nearly overwhelms Hisoka's empathy.
Hisoka reminds himself that he refuses to feel afraid. The roses pulse under his feet, wet and hot. Tsuzuki's dreams always begin here, among flowers and echoes of a child's cries overlaid with laughter. Sometimes they end here, too, the roses dissolving into a sea of red.
He never quite remembers everything, but Hisoka keeps a journal of his nightly battles. Wary of the possibility of discovery, he writes only short phrases in English:
pecking at mutilated bodies, stinking in the heat of summer. Intestines gleam where they snake out of eviscerated torsos. The doves stare at Hisoka with eyes like pomegranate seeds, a darker crimson staining their beaks. As one they ascend to the air, feathers fluttering with tall grasses in the breeze. There are hundreds of them, even thousands, momentarily turning the sky black.
Hisoka tries not to breathe. A dove lands beside his feet, its beak heavy with an eyeball. The irises are purple, just like all the other eyes that remain intact.
room is dark, shadows muting sounds and movements. Tsuzuki's eyes glitter in the neon lights outside their cheap hotel, arousal and regret chasing each other. Hisoka is going down on him for the first time, kneeling on the floor between his legs. This isn't right, Tsuzuki thinks: there should be flowers and foreplay and a bed that smells like them. Not this thin-walled room with its bleached sheets, not on a dirty carpet where dozens of men and women have knelt for something less than love.
"Stop thinking." Hisoka glares up at him, narrow-eyed. "You're giving me a headache."
When Hisoka's lips close around his cock, Tsuzuki shuts his eyes tightly, unable to watch. He shivers on the bed, afraid to move, afraid to hurt Hisoka. His fingers clench around handfuls of worn cotton, the tension in his body winding tighter with the clumsy suction of Hisoka's mouth.
He belatedly realises that Hisoka is pulling at one of his hands, placing it on-- Hisoka's hair? Tsuzuki's breath leaves his lungs in a gasp, his eyes opening to stare disbelievingly at Hisoka. His partner pulls away, licking his lips and staring back, quicksilver with anger and challenge.
Hisoka kisses the palm of his hand, right on the heart line, and lets go. Slowly, slowly, Tsuzuki cards through Hisoka's hair with his fingers. Brown hair parts after them like water, marking their passage; down to the nape of Hisoka's neck, pale and fragile in the ghostly light. His thumb caresses the knobs of bone and Hisoka leans down again, sliding Tsuzuki's cock into his mouth.
Tsuzuki's nails scratch the skin of Hisoka's neck when he comes, violent and unexpected. When Hisoka looks up again, the one who looks back at him is not Tsuzuki but Saagatanasu, laughing as his neck is broken in one sharp twist.
don't be weak
so Hisoka devours instead, taking in all the nightmares Tsuzuki has to give. They taste bitter on his tongue, stinging his lips and the inside of his mouth with the sharpness of crushed glass. He ignores the familiar pain and wipes away the blood seeping from the corners of his eyes with an impatient hand. Tsuzuki's anguish spreads through him like poison, but he trusts that he is strong enough.
He knows he can't fix Tsuzuki, even if he wants to. Tsuzuki needs to feel deserving; gifts given too easily are instinctively rejected, under a facade of smiles and enthusiastic hugs. This is something Tsuzuki needs to work for, the same way Tsuzuki wooed him into a relationship -- and finally believed he would stay.
All Hisoka can do is to keep Tsuzuki afloat long enough. Tsuzuki has over ninety years' worth of suffering, and Hisoka is comparatively untouched. He thinks there is still a lot of him left to damage, while he waits for Tsuzuki to learn to heal himself.