Raphael's observations about the relationship between Valon and Alister. Yaoi one shot.
Your best friend is taken. You never thought he would be taken by anyone, much less by one who is little more than a child. Yet you know better than to assume that he is anything like a typical fourteen year old boy. You know his past just as you know your best friend's past. They don't know that you know and they most likely never will know that you know. They probably don't even want you to know. Too bad. You know anyway.
Master Dartz told you the secrets of the younger Swordsmen of Doom. Even now you are surprised that he did such a thing yet you are not. You are the first of the three. You know all, except what Master Dartz doesn't want you to know. You know that Valon, the youngest and last member of the Swordsmen, isn't just Australian. He's also Greek, Spanish and English mixed into one. It's all he knows about his parents. He does not remember anything, except for his name, before the age of six, but when he is ready to kill because someone grabs him the wrong way, you realize it's for the best.
As for your closest friend, Alister, he makes it difficult to decide who among you three has the worst past. You lived on a desert island for a few years when your entire family was killed in a typhoon, but you'd take that and Valon's childhood wrapped in a sandwich over the hell he went through. War is hell, especially in a country where eight thousand people were killed in fourty-eight hours; a country whose beautiful capital was blown to pieces. Alister is Bosnian and Scottish, a combo one doesn't see everyday, unlike you being French and German. Whatever he is, you know he blames Kaiba Corporation for his baby brother's death and you're not certain if you can blame him or not.
You have no intention of using your knowledge against them and you have no intention of mentioning too much of your own past. Mutual silence, at least for the most part. You know that Alister and Valon have told each other a little of what had happened to them, but neither one of them know the full details. You don't fault them for that. You don't know of many people who would tear their hearts out by saying too much of their painful pasts and you never understood those that do.
Alister and Valon almost never understand each other, which is why your surprised that the two of them are together as lovers. You thought they'd simply be colleagues who simply disliked each other, but made sure to get their jobs done. Not the first time you've been wrong. Then, you thought they'd be like brothers who argued constantly yet cared deeply for each other. Just friends. You amaze yourself at just how often you can be wrong. Not that you have a problem with their relationship. Alister is still your best friend and Valon is close too. Like the three Musketeers in a way, only two of the members are fucking like rabbits.
Their relationship is full of lust, yet when you speak to Alister, you could swear that he is glowing. He never glowed when you frist met him. Quite the opposite. He seemed dead and made it clear that he wasn't in Doma to make friends. You didn't care about his feelings; you weren't there to make friends either. Within less than a year, the two of you were inseparable, equally loyal to one another and hostile to any intrusion.
When Valon came into the picture, you were simply stunned but accepting. Alister, on the other hand, was furious under the unconvincing guise of indifference. Valon sniffed it the way a shark sniffed blood and he pounced, making damned sure that Alister would be driven insane. Worked like a charm then and still does now. Only Alister is living again. He smiles more often and you sense that at least some of his heart is coming back to life.
You suppose to makes sense. Alister asks how it's possible to resist Valon's beautiful blue eyes. You can think of about a dozen ways, but you don't fall for the eyes of another male. You don't even know what it's like to glow and you're not sure if you want to know, but you can see how Alister would fall for the child.
Valon can have anyone he wants. Incidently, so could Alister, only it would anyone male. Both are pleasing on the eyes, but Alister has grown from a cute young boy to a beautiful wom--oops. A beautiful feminine male. Sometimes you wish he were a woman, then you can tell Valon to go fuck himself because you know that you can have anyone you want too. Just that you don't have any interest in other men and would prefer to keep it that way. So, you'd never fall for Valon's charms, but even you can't help but admire him.
Irrepressible people are easy to admire. You know that Valon has lived in his own hell when he grew up yet he never let it get the best of him. He is always gleaming with mischief and a cheerful smile. He swears up and down that the world's problems won't stop him from living or becoming a stronger duelist. Sometimes you and Alister want to take turns smacking him, but you wonder if it's simply envy. Neither you or your best friend think the way Valon does. You just try to shrug it off, but Alister is just driven nuts by it. That is, when he isn't horrified. Valon knows this and quite naturally plays on it.
You keep telling Alister not to allow Valon to get under his skin, but you might as well be talking to the wall. There's a lot about the world that you can't stand, but you know better than to shriek about it. Alister can't seem to keep his mouth shut about Valon's very different beliefs. Hell, you know he's incapable of keeping his mouth shut about anything, which drives Valon crazy. You figure it's a sort of payback. Kind of a tit for tat sort of thing and you're the referee.
"Knock it off!" Has become your mantra everytime the two of them start shit, but you can only say it so much at home. You may lead the Swordsmen of Doom, but Alister runs the house. He always has.
You groan. Alister is screeching for Valon and you balk when you find that it's about toilet paper and how Valon uses a ton of it. You understand how Alister feels because you know what it's like to have to ration even the smallest things, but you also know that none of you have any wants now. The three of you have the money to spare for a huge box of toilet paper, but you realize that you could buy enough toilet paper to wrap around the United States and Alister would still find a reason to complain about the overuse of it. He even tries to tell Valon how to fold the paper properly. He does it a thousand times and can never seem to understand why Valon is having none of that.
"All you have to do is just wad it up!" He says.
"No, Valon! You fold it so you don't use so damned much of it! We can't keep buying toilet paper!"
You want them to knock it off, but at the same time, you can't help but be amused. Alister suddenly throws his hands up and threatens Valon with coffee filters and newspapers should they ever run out of toilet paper. You can't help but chuckle. That'll never happen and even Alister himself knows it, but he just can't help but be annoyed.
Then, of course, there's the toilet paper roll itself. Valon never seems to bother putting it in the holder, a fact that drives Alister up the wall. Even you get irritated with that. Laziness. Not something you forgive easily, but you let Alister handle it as you try to watch some TV in the living room.
"How hard is it to put the toilet paper in the holder?" Your best friend asks, trying not to grit his teeth.
Valon just stares at him with a gleam in his blue eyes. "I don't want to do that."
No, of course not. That would make things too easy for Alister and Valon just can't have that. You tell Alister to just do it himself and he walks off, grumbling. Valon grins and you shake your head. When Alister returns, he plops on the couch next to Valon.
"You drive me fucking nuts, you know that?" He grabs the younger boy and holds him in a right embrace while giving him a flurry of kisses.
You know that inwardly, Valon is saying yes, but he knows better than to actually say it. He'd like to have some sex tonight.
The walls on your room have ears and mouth and they know how to use them. When you sit on your twin bed with your grey cat on the other bed, you wonder why you even bother watching television. After all, Alister and Valon are entertaining enough. This time Alister is titting for tatting. Literally.
"Look at these flabbies."
You chuckle, knowing that it's just teenage baby fat that Valon has yet to outgrow. Alister knows it too, but he loves needling his younger boyfriend. It's a revenge thing, especially since Valon has often made fun of Alister's well-muscled chest too.
"I don't have fucking flabbies!"
Everyday, you hear it. Alister makes fun of Valon's "flabbies", Valon claims he doens't have them and you're about ready to bellow "knock it off" or laugh your ass off. Neither one of them dare make fun of your pecs, but you figure it's because you can bench press their combined weight rather easily.
"Yes, you do! I know you do and you know how I know?"
"I don't have flabbies!"
"You haven't had your exercise, that's how I know."
And so it begins and never ends. Both you and Alister know damned well that Valon does exercise, but that's never stopped your best friend from having some fun.
"Damnit, Alister, I do exercise! I'm just not nuts about it like you and Raf are."
"That's why you have flabblies, flabby!"
You can't help but think the same thing. Even your cat is amused as she licks her paws.
"You know what I'd like to do to your flabbys?" Alister is mischievous now and you know what's coming.
"What?" Valon knows what. Hell, you know what. Even your cat knows what.
Even though you've never seen the two of them do anything, you sure as the ocean hear Valon's sharp intake of breath and Alister's loud grunting. Oh well, at least they're not screaming. Alister is a notorious screamer, both in and out of bed. You have the television to drown out any sounds those two are making and you're glad that a damned good game show is on now.
Alister is beautiful when he smiles. Even you can't ignore that. The wind just loves him as it lifts his red hair. It's cool today and the sky is littered with only a few clouds. You stand beside him on the balcony that overlooks the Pacific Ocean, which looks like blue gold under the afternoon sun. Alister folds his arms across his chest.
"I'm going to teach Valon to drive."
You're not surprised.
Alister turns to you, still smiling. His grey eyes shine in the sunlight. "Can you believe he wants to learn with our Camaro?"
"He's not going to." You reply, knowing that your best friend would agree. The two of you have a standing rule when it comes to the black car: No one drives it but the two of you, who made it.
"No. He's asked too." Alister snorts. "I told him exactly what you told me, only a little less quieter."
"Heh. I figured you would. You drive it more than I do."
Both of you can hear Valon playing video games nearby, but he's so engrossed in whatever fighter game he's got on that you know he doesn't hear either one of you. Alister looks towards the room and smiles once more.
"I'm going to get him a Jeep." He announces. "I think it suits him, don't you agree?"
You do. You can see it now. Valon in his goggles, his hair more wild than ever as he speeds in the open air. You figure that he only wants to learn on the Camaro just to piss you and Alister off. You decide that's not going to happen. You wouldn't want Alister's hair to turn white.
You nod. "Make sure it's a manual. I think he'd like that."
Alister agrees because his smile widens. The both of you believe that if a car isn't a manual, it doesn't quality as driving. Snobbish? Yea, sure, but everyone has their moments of snobbiness.
"I'll do that." He walks towards Valon's room.
He turns, eyebrow raised. "Yes?"
Alister smiles once more. "I know, I remind him every chance I get."
You see the Swordsmen as Doom as a pattern of some sort or one who passes down a skill from one to the other. You taught Alister to drive--really drive. You taught him to ride a motorcycle and you taught him to fly both a helicopter and three kinds of airplanes. Alister in turn taught Valon to ride and to drive. He has yet to convince Valon to fly any aircraft, but you know he will eventually. Alister is persuasive that way. All three of you have something to offer and you can't imagine anyone else, except for Dartz and your deceased family, being all that important.
Sounds harsh, sure, but life itself is harsh--a fact all three of them learned early on in their lives. It doesn't seem so bad now. The three of you do as you please and can have whatever you wish. You smile at that thought. Dartz spoils all three of you, but you most of all. He favors you and you enjoy having it. In return you give him loyalty that would put the rest of the world to shame. Only Alister matches your faith. You know this because Valon often voices his doubts while telling Alister not to say anything. He doesn't, but you don't need either one of them to tell you anything.
The walls have ears and a big mouth, a fact the two of them often forget. You're not worried though. Valon is loyal to you and you know that he cares deeply for Alister, even though it's masked in devilish mischief. Alister would do just about anything for Valon and you see it in your best friend's intense grey eyes.
"I just have to protect him." He says to you while the two of you are sitting together on the couch. Valon is once again playing video games--games Alister bought him.
You're not surprised he would say that, but you can't help but wonder if that urge is the result of what he lost five years ago. You know Alister blames himself for his little brother's death and you know it's projected onto Kaiba Corp. You don't mind. So long as the world is returned to it's pure state, you don't care if Alister blames the Vatican. However, you know that Valon is not Mikey, but you don't say that. The last thing you need is your best friend exploding.
"Valon doesn't need protection." Your statement makes Alister's eyes flash.
"Valon is a child. He's wild and I think he needs guidance."
"And discipline?" You ask.
Alister nods. "He thinks everything is a goddamned joke." He leans back against the leather couch and sighs. "I just don't want to lose him..."
"Of course not." You smile. You know your best friend's feelings. Much as he tries to cover them, his emotions are much stronger than his masks. "I doubt you will though. You two have a great time together."
"Yea, I guess we do." Alister looks towards the room he and Valon sleep in.
You wonder if Valon can hear the two of you, but don't believe he does. "I'm glad you met him."
"Oh?" Alister raises an eyebrow before stretching his arms over his head. "Is it because I'm finally happy? I mean really happy?"
"Yea. I know it sounds weird, but sometimes when you are in love, it can make you stronger. The urge to protect them, to encourage them, to take care of them. All of that can give you strength you never thought you had."
"Hmm..." He looks into your eyes. "For five years, I thought love made you weak. That it was nothing more than a stupid trick. I thought only stupid people fell in love" He looks back to his room. "Only now I realize how asinine it was to think that way. I know things are complex and I know that people have suffered dearly thanks to love, but with Valon, I feel like I could do anything. I never felt that way."
"I know how that feels". And you surely do given your own strength as a duelist and how you've grown much in the years you've been with Dartz and your only two friends.
"Yea, I can imagine. There's no getting around that you've always been the strongest."
"Only I've never been in love." You shrug.
"You don't have to be in love. I mean, you have us, and you've always been a good friend to me." He sighs before smiling. "I've made a lot of sacrifices for him and I don't regret that. I guess I'd do anything to keep him smiling. He's just adorable, especially when he gives me his begging look when he wants something. To be honest though, I refuse to spoil him anymore than he's already been spoiled."
"So, why did you get him all those video games?" You ask, knowing Valon will be in his room all night thanks to those games.
Alister rolls his eyes. "Because I'm stupid."
All your life, you've been taught to expect the unexpected. It's one of the reasons you survived on a desert island. It's also how you manage to survive being sandwiched between powerful wind and strong earth. You observe the two of them, often bemused, sometimes irritated, but always with some sort of joy for them.
Alister holds Valon close to him as they watch television together. He runs his hand through Valon's dark hair while giving him kisses. They are silent, a rare treat for you and your cat. You know that later on they'll be loud again and you might have to be the umpire as Alister tries to toss Valon to you. You know that you'll hear the two of them enjoy themselves in bed together and you'll know how Alister will fly or drive Valon wherever he wants to go. Sacrifices will be made, you know that too, but they're good sacrifices because they are done by someone more than willing to make them.
Your best friend is taken, but that's okay. Alister is beautiful when he smiles.