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[20] I’ve Got You (September 2018, Dating Rumor)
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Reading Time: 20 minutes
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Details
Idol

Yamada Ryosuke & Chinen Yuri

Relationship

Yamada x Chinen

Ship Name

Yamachii
Yamachine

Type

Collection

Genre

Pure Angst most of the story, Fluffy at the end, Hurt/Comfort, this is really hard, this one hurts, supporting each other no matter what, romance, sweet love, slice of life, marriage, domestic

Rating

PG-13

Warnings

MxM Relationship
This is very….tough to read…it’s sad/angsty, but it does have a positive resolution.

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Synopsis

I've Got You (September 2018, The Dating Rumor Response--ie The RING)

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Story Rating

Ryosuke wasn’t sure how he’d managed to make it through the afternoon with all of the subtle stares and the awkward conversations, the escalation of things in the press, throughout the internet…it was a huge issue–though, he supposed it was just one of those weird situations that most people wouldn’t dare to bring up to him and ask him forthright about.

Of course, that was true for everyone apart from his manager who had texted him about three hours before.

When Ryosuke had opened the message his heart felt like it was being grasped in a vice grip, his blood running cold as he used his fingers to scroll through the message, his mind already racing at the implications.

R: What the fuck!

M: I’m sorry, I couldn’t fix it…

R: Well, if you think I’m going to lose it, then just wait until Yuri sees this shit!

M: I understand. Give me a few hours to see if I can’t change their mind…

M: Just…don’t hold your breath.

He’d avoided everyone as he went to the bathroom upstairs, down the hallway where no one was working, allowing himself a few moments to cry–really wanting to smash his fist through the mirror–but he kept it together, attempting to get it out of his system, doing his best to compose himself, splashing his face with water because he still had another meeting to attend and he needed to get through this.

This wasn’t the first time he’d dealt with this kind of garbage, of course it wasn’t, but…somehow it felt different.

This felt…like a violation.

Rumors that had besieged him before were nonspecific and generally could be attributed to overactive imaginations and too much connecting the dots. The recent articles didn’t do that…rather they used absolutes. They framed everything in a way that made it appear as fact, rather than some money hungry person who sold them half-truths and improbabilities.

The internet did the rest.

Yuri is going to freak.

He ran through his head, but found himself frustrated when he couldn’t remember where he was today, quickly opening their shared calendar and sighing in relief when he realized that he would have finished work already and be on his way home.

He had no idea…

No idea at all as to what would be waiting for him at home.

****

Yuri scrambled forward, his legs shifting over Ryosuke’s so he could fit onto his lap, curling inward as he allowed himself to be sheltered, bending to press his face into his chest as he shuddered, whispering apologies as strong arms wrapped around him, gasping for a steady breath as he felt the first tear fall from his eyes making a slow path down his cheek.

That was all it took, all he really needed to allow so that the carefully constructed wall of emotions he’d been trying to conceal all day were given freedom to burst open, his body trembled as it was wracked with the power of his anger melting into utter grief, finding no consolation in the tenderness of Ryosuke’s hands rubbing up and down his back as the low and sorrowful sound of his heartbreak filled the room from the sobs shaking his small body.

There were no other noises for what seemed like hours, almost as if time had slowed down to stand still, the atmosphere seemingly serene apart from the soft whimpers from Yuri, interspersed with mostly nonsensical complaints and diatribes about how stupid people were and how much he sometimes despised their careers as idols.  

His mind was a whirlwind of conflicting thoughts at war with one another for importance.

It’s not fair!

Why should there be so many words said about a relationship that doesn’t even exist when we spend every minute of our lives outside these walls ensuring no one knows about us!

All of the words, the hateful mean words aimed at Ryosuke that cut me straight to the core.

They hurt me, but they surely hurt him more…which in turns hurts me again.

I suffer twice because of horrible people.

People who call themselves his fans screaming about how he should quit the group!

Step down from center!

Leave off being an idol!

They’ve said the most horrific things about him!

All I can do is a big fat lump of nothing!

I can’t tell the truth!  

I can’t defend him!

I just have to carry on like I’m unaffected,  like it’s of no import to me at all,  like I couldn’t possibly care less!

Except I do care!

That is not just my husband they’re trying to destroy…

He’s not just that but also my confidant, my heart living outside my body….

My true love…

My soulmate…

My very best friend…

My everything.

And all I can do is just sit quietly, obediently, and pretend to be unaffected.

Normally, Yuri would be tuned in enough to be drawn out of his internal monologue by the soft sniffling from Ryosuke, who despite his best intentions of saying strong so that Yuri could sort through his own feelings found himself overwhelmed with his growing despondency as Yuri released his own despair into the air around them.

Both of them were giving themselves and by extension one another the room to explore what they felt and to be honest about it…

With themselves and maybe even more importantly, with one another.

It was hard, it was one of the hardest things they might have ever had to face since becoming idols. Surely, it was the most difficult since they’d married…this was uncharted territory, as they’d managed to seclude themselves, to build their own quiet little spot in the world where it was easy to pretend the obstacles and negatives outside couldn’t touch them when they were away from work and the spotlights–yet, they both knew that it was like a candle burning at both ends most of the time, and neither of them could deny that there had been a growing sense of impending troubles for a while now.

It still took them by surprise, each for different reasons, that this issue had escalated the way it had.

“I never thought it would go this far, ” Yuri spoke through his tears, his mouth pressed against Ryosuke’s shoulder, his body weak from exhaustion,  “I thought it would flare up and then it would go away… But… But this time it didn’t…it…it hasn’t…”

Ryosuke hummed softly, clenching his eyes closed for a moment as his fingers traced lines across Yuri ’s back, refraining from slapping his hands over Yuri’s mouth because every syllable felt like razor blades to his skin.

He knew it was bad, neither of them were stupid, they’d both known…And for a few days they’d laughed it off, had the audacity to actually make fun of it. But then…the tone of speculation and rumors changed among the fans, a underlying anger and resentment which hadn’t been there anytime before, even with rumors as volatile as this one.

Ryosuke had known when the report was sent to his phone about the Jimusho contacting the model’s agency to make arrangements of how to handle the situation to ensure as little damage as possible for both parties the day before that things had taken a terrible turn. It wasn’t something they normally did, to respond, to get involved, so when they acted in a way to determine a unified front to the public he knew.

All hell’s gonna break loose.

He thought there would be press conferences and talk shows and interviews and statements, he’d dreaded them all, but would be relieved to set the record straight, in fact, he’d begun preparing notes so he could handle himself properly, with that in mind, not in his wildest imaginings could he have ever thought or have predicted the plan would be to remain utterly silent.

On one hand, he understood, he really did…but he sincerely wanted to speak out about it, to clear things up, for his own sake, but even more so for that poor model’s sake–as she was being drug especially hard by his more rabid fans. She didn’t deserve the horrible things she’d been subjected to being said and implied about her just because she’d been associated with him.

She was a victim here,  same as he was.

And then there was Yuri….

My Chiisana

Oh…Ree…

Yuri, who had tried to keep a brave front for the most part as the slow build began to reveal how truly insidious the rumors were becoming, but Ryosuke knew him better than that. There was a tightly coiled anger boiling up inside of him–and Ryosuke knew underneath that was the real truth–a painful, cold, truth that Yuri would hate to ever have exposed.

The fact that there was nothing either of them could do about these kinds of things.

Their hands were tied and they’d never be able to pretend otherwise no matter how much they lived with great effort to try to be normal.

They weren’t.

His rage had finally reached its peak and exploded only minutes ago, blessedly waiting until his arrival home, resulting in broken glasses, vehement swearing and threats, and in the end, Yuri squalling hysterically in Ryosuke’s lap over his desire to educate his fans on the facts.

Ryosuke doesn’t even like girls.

Ryosuke wasn’t interested in a model because he was in fact married to me if you must know.

He’s married to ME!

They haven’t even officially met though they had mutual friends and had been at different events at the same time in the past.

They don’t have matching jewelry.  

Not phone cases or bracelets and they sure as fuck don’t have matching rings.

Matching rings!

Fuck!

Not much else had been able to send Yuri into a rapid tailspin leading to an epic meltdown more than when he’d been sent an update on the issue from his manager just before arriving home twenty minutes before Ryosuke, reading the text detailing the side by side images that had been published by all too inquisitive fans showing Ryosuke’s ‘always present’ ring and a supposedly matching ring on her hand.

He’d broken three of their crystal glasses against the kitchen wall when he’d read it.

The ring had nothing to do with anyone or anything else that they’d ever be able to acknowledge publicly, the inscription inside it held all the truth there would ever be.

Beloved.  

The fact was, the ring was the one he’d slid into Ryosuke’s finger on their wedding day.

****

(Flashback)

“You know…” Yuri twisted around onto his side so he could lean up onto his elbow to look down at Ryosuke who was laying with his arms under his head, “There’s something you probably need to think about.”

Ryosuke’s eyebrows rose slowly, “You mean something other than the fact that you’re now officially my husband and I can have my way with you anytime I want now?”

Yuri blushed furiously, the feeling of being married to Ryosuke after all of this time washing through him again, and he had to resist the urge to pinch himself as it still seemed too good to be true. In all fairness, it had been less than twenty-four hours and they were completely naked, but still…

“Well,” Yuri grinned, leaning up to kiss Ryosuke softly, groaning as his skin tickled when his hands shifted, one arm wrapping around him, drawing slowly up his back to clench his fingertips on his shoulder, not letting him draw back too far away from him, “There’s that…but…”

Ryosuke hummed, his other hand sliding through Yuri’s hair as he finished his thought, “…I was more thinking about this…”

His hand slid between them, grasping Ryosuke’s wrist, then pulling his hand down, tapping the top of his hand before he began to slowly twist the ring on Ryosuke’s finger, “I’m actually talking about this.”

Ryosuke leaned his head up to watch Yuri’s actions, his head tilting as he tried to understand what he was talking about.

Yuri’s expression was serious, his eyes not leaving Ryosuke’s face, “You won’t be able to keep wearing it, Ryo.”

Ryosuke’s eyes moved slowly back up to connect to Yuri’s, sighing softly as he plopped his head back down, “I don’t want to talk about it already.”

“But we…”

“Just wait until we get home…just that…alright?”

“Alright.”

******

They’d unpacked the suitcases and Ryosuke had thrown himself down on the bed, stretched out, exhausted after the crazy week they’d had–from both jetlag and far too many hours of romance and long walks on the beach, sleeping on the sand, swimming in the ocean, and learning more about each other on every level moment to moment–emotionally, physically, spiritually.

He grinned when he felt the bed wiggle from Yuri crawling onto the bottom of it, his eyes opening as Yuri loomed over top of him, his smile full of mischief.

“I have a plan for you,” Yuri whispered, then squealed loudly when Ryosuke suddenly bolted up, grabbing him around the waist and flipping him over to straddle him, his voice soft, “Is that so?

Yuri laughed breathlessly, his heart thundering from the way it still felt so new to have Ryosuke’s weight pressing down on his body, Ryosuke’s voice laced with seduction, “What exactly would those plans be?”

Yuri blinked, having mostly forgotten what he’d even been planning to say under the spell Ryosuke always seemed to cast, “I…ahh…”

Ryosuke laughed softly, leaning down to press a wet kiss against Yuri’s neck, his body shuddering at the contact before he pressed his hands against Ryosuke’s chest, urging him to move back up, “Wait! Wait! I remember!”

Ryosuke huffed, pulling himself back up and looking down at Yuri expectantly, “Okay…what?”

“I know you don’t want to talk about it but you can’t keep wearing that ring and I think I know what you can do so you can keep it on!“

The words were a blur, spoken fast so that Ryosuke wouldn’t be able to stop him from speaking them. Ryosuke stared at him, taking a moment to make sure he understood what he’d said, and then nodded slowly, “Okay…so…then what’s your idea?”

Yuri’s tummy dropped out, because the moment Ryosuke spoke he realized that this was something that had been weighing on Ryosuke heavily, maybe even before their wedding, he couldn’t be sure, but the fact he was willing to listen to his idea made him think that he was sincerely desperate for a way to not have to remove the ring.

Yuri carefully pulled his hands up between them, lacing his fingers through Ryosuke’s, squeezing them tightly, before he released them, his fingers moving to touch the ring, causing Ryosuke to groan, and pull his hand away when he felt Yuri trying to pull the ring off of his finger.

“Ryo,” Yuri spoke firmly, holding his hand tightly, “Please, just trust me.”

Ryosuke stared at him for a moment, then sighed softly, offering a curt nod before he held his hand out to him, his eyes fixated on what Yuri was doing when he slowly drew the ring off of the finger where he’d placed it only a week before, and then whispered, “I love you, you know that?”

Ryosuke’s eyes tore away from where Yuri was holding the ring in front of his hand, taking a deep breath, his eyes soft, “I love you too, Ree…but I don’t want to take the ring off I wan–”

Before he could finish his thoughts he blinked rapidly at the sensation on his hand, looking down to discover that Yuri had moved the ring from his ‘ring finger’ onto his middle finger instead, he studied the ring there, tilting his head to the side as Yuri’s hand reached up to stroke his cheek, drawing him over to look at him.

When their eyes met, Yuri whispered, his voice soft with emotion, “I know it’s not exactly the same, but it’s still on your hand because I put it there…and maybe if it’s not on the finger everyone associates with commitment and marriage…then…maybe people won’t notice or care at all about it.”

Ryosuke stared at him, his mouth opening and closing and then he smiled, holding up his hand to look at the ring, then his arms moved to grab Yuri under his back, bending forward until he was hugging him, his face pressed against his neck as he laughed softly, his entire body shaking, and then…he cried.

Yuri had shoved him sideways, forcing him onto his side so he could see him, make sure he was okay, his face twisted in grief, as the feelings overwhelmed him and the bed shook with his sobs, Yuri whispered softly, “Oh, Ryo…”

He shuffled forward to draw him into his arms, holding him as close as he could get him, letting him cry, because he understood without words all of the warring thoughts in his head, the complexities of their lives now, of things that should be simple like wedding rings and such, and after a while, Yuri cried too, because Ryosuke’s pain was his own–it had always been so, and he suspected it would always be so…and all he knew, as an absolute fact–was that they would always take care of each other.

Whether times were good or bad–they’d vowed to it, and neither of them intended to ever break those promises.

Ever.

****

The truth was that from the very start Ryosuke had been loathe to move the ring into his middle finger though he knew it would be the wise thing to do. Still, despite their marriage and their happiness together, Ryosuke remained ever the consummate professional, so he’d moved the ring because it was good and right for him to do so in order that his fans would be protected from the truth and also to ensure there wasn’t undo speculation about relationships or marriages whether related to Yuri or not. 

Despite the ring holding great meaning from the day he’d placed it on Ryosuke’s finger, Yuri never felt the need for such symbols, apart from the fact that he could barely tolerate anything on his hands in general, something that would be there apart from a costume, well, it would be torture to him. Ryosuke, of course, understood his decision to not carry a physical symbol of their bond anywhere, rather contented with the truth in his heart.

Though, he always understood why Ryosuke wanted to wear it, even if it was a foreign concept to him. So, Ryosuke had worn it since the wedding unless expressly asked to remove it for a program, filming, or photo shoot for whatever reason, which honestly very rarely happened.  

That ring held absolutely no meaning to anyone else, not really, but to Ryosuke, and by extension even without fully understanding it, Yuri–it was a glittering symbol of the day they’d married, of the vows they spoken, the promises made, of their love and unity.

Over time, even Yuri saw the ring as something special and he found himself irritated when Ryosuke was made to remove it, though he surely understood. So, when he was told the news that he’d need to remove it, Yuri hadn’t expected such an explosive reaction, yet, the raw fury that radiated within himself at the idea of anyone dictating to Ryosuke that he needed to take it off was immeasurable.

How dare they!!

It was infuriating, and when Yuri realized what he had done he scrambled to clean up the mess of glass. He’d been in the floor, using the dustpan and broom to clean up the glass when Ryosuke arrived home, entering the kitchen, unknowing of what had just happened minutes before, and ultimately leading Yuri into the complete breakdown they were currently experiencing when he had revealed the message that he had received from his manager.

Ryosuke, I know this isn’t what you want to hear but the situation is continuing to escalate and they’re not going to change their minds. The executives think it in the best interest of yourself and to assuage the fan’s emotional pain that you remove the ring–no negotiating to be done about it. I can’t say when or if it will be okay to put it back on.. But if it does happen I’ll let you know. I’m sorry. Tell Yuri I’m sorry…I’ll continue to try to persuade them, but as of right now there’s no way to change their decision. I’m really sorry.

Yuri sniffled, his body feeling loose and uncoordinated, unclenching his fists from Ryosuke’s shirt, shifting back with a wet smile and a huffed laugh as he patted the wrinkles down, trying to smooth them out, but Ryosuke’s hands reached up to grab his wrists, his voice soft, “Stop, it’s fine.”

“I…I hit you…and I ruined your shir–”

“Ree,” Ryosuke released one of his wrists, his fingertips running along Yuri’s jaw to his chin and then tipped his face up to his, “It’s fine.”

Yuri shuddered, his expression crumpling when he saw the grief that was written there on Ryosuke’s own–of how he’d was struggling and suffering and feeling all of the things Yuri was but maybe even more–but he’d stayed quiet, and he’d tried to hide it just so he could comfort him.

“Y-you…”

“I’m fine,” Ryosuke nodded, tilting forward to press his lips softly against Yuri’s forehead, drawing slowly back, his eyes blinking in affection, “I’m worried about you.”

“Shut up,” Yuri laughed softly, shaking his head, no humor in his words, “I don’t…I want…”

“I know,” Ryosuke sighed, leaning back against the counter, his eyes drifting over the glittering glass in the floor behind them, glad that there hadn’t been anything else for Yuri to throw when he’d come unhinged.

Instead, he’d come at Ryosuke, moving like a whirlwind across the kitchen, his fists slamming into his chest out of sheer panic, completely inconsolable when faced with the pain he’d seen reflected ten-fold inside Ryosuke’s eyes.

He’d not resisted when Ryosuke grabbed his wrists to stop him, letting him pull him into his embrace as he begged, demanded that he ‘fix this’, his voice filled with a heady combination of anger and complete loss, his entire body alight with a strange combination of agitation, anxiety, and hopelessness.

Ryosuke drew his arms up to rub his eyes as he let his head tilt back against the hard surface, his eyes satisfied with the darkness he was offering, the few seconds flashing before his eyes.

Once Ryosuke had stopped him, having grabbed him up into his arms Yuri had become as still as a statue, which in some ways was far more frightening than the fireball Yuri.

Ryosuke understood the feelings, the complete irritation at having so much of their lives dictated by those beyond their walls. Not just the Jimusho, but even the fans they’d never know the names of who wield enough power to effect real life changes to things that were deeply personal and private.

“I’m sorry,” Yuri’s voice broke through the memory, causing Ryosuke to hum softly before he dismissed him with a huff, “You didn’t mean anything.”

“Still,  I…”

Rosuke clicked his tongue sharply, his tone dismissive of whatever responsibility Yuri was trying to take into himself because what was happening was neither of their faults, and it was only natural that their reactions were raw and that was also okay, the corner of his mouth twisting up a bit as he whispered,  “Shut up. Stop that. It’s fine.”

Yuri studied, him, unable to see his face, but watching his pulse in his neck, the rise and fall of his breath and he shook his head, his voice a whisper, “O-Okay…but…Ryo…I-I don’t…want to say it…but…I think that we should ta–”

“Then don’t say it!” Ryosuke snapped as he felt the words Yuri was speaking take hold of him, the disorienting feeling of being out of control threatening to swallow him whole, his head jerking up to stare at Yuri, his eyes flashing with anger, “Don’t!”

It’s too soon,  please,  I need more time to come to terms with this.

Please.

Yuri couldn’t help but grin, first because he could read Ryosuke like he’d spoken his thoughts aloud and he damn well knew there would never be a time he’d freely agree to this, at the same time he also recognized the fact that Ryosuke was so stubborn and absolute when he got something in his head–but they both knew the truth.

They didn’t have a choice, not at all.

It’s a good thing I know you.

Oh, my beloved.

I’ll help you.

Take care of you.

Don’t worry.

Yuri shifted, moving to close the distance between them, smiling at the way Ryosuke attempted to move away from him, though impossible, it didn’t stop him from frantically pressing his back into the cabinet, tilting his face even further away from him, but it was useless…he knew that and he knew that Ryosuke knew that too, but they’d play it his way, after all, he was suffering and all Yuri wanted to do now that he’d managed to get his emotions out of his system is to help Ryosuke come to terms with what was happening, and what they needed to do to help the situation.

Yuri’s fingers slid slowly across Ryouske’s shoulders, his eyes focused on the heavy lashes laying across his cheeks as his eyes fluttered closed, Ryosuke’s lips pursed in frustration before he bit out, “I don’t want to!”

“I know,” Yuri whispered, “I know…I do…” his fingertips smoothing across Ryosuke’s cheeks to hold his face within his grasp, lifting himself onto his knees so he could look down at Ryosuke, discovering his eyes open, staring up at the ceiling.

When they moved slowly to meet Yuri’s he gasped at the sheer depth of pain he saw there, “Oh, Ryo…”

“I–I–” Ryosuke took a shuddering breath, his hands lifting up between Yuri’s to scrub at the fresh wave of tears spilling down, “Damn it.”

“It’s okay, it’s alright,” Yuri whispered, grabbing his head and pulling him up to hug him tightly to his chest. Ryosuke let himself be moved, his body limp, all fight having left him, within the solace offered by Yuri’s embrace, and Yuri held him, running his fingers through his hair as he spoke softly, soothingly, “I know how you feel, I do, you know I do.”

Ryosuke hummed in agreement, his hands moving to rest on Yuri’s hips, fingertips pressing inward and loosening reflexively as Yuri spoke.

“I never understood it before, at first I didn’t know why it mattered, but over time I came to understand–it was important to you, and because of that I cared about it, for you…but…now, I know, I see it was something traditional that you wanted, just one little thing that could be a symbol like others get to have. I see it now.”

Ryosuke’s body shook as Yuri’s words spoke straight to his soul, causing Yuri to hold him impossibly tighter, desperate to convey his feelings to him, his words fierce, voice coarse, “If I could I’d storm right out that door and scream to the whole world the fucking truth, but I can’t…I can’t do that, and…I hate it! I hate this!”

Ryosuke nodded against his chest, his voice broken and wet from his tears, “Me too.”

“But…Ryo, we have always had a complicated life…you know?” Yuri laughed but it was without humor, his voice softening further, “We knew this, both of us…and…this is just one of the ways it happens to become a choice for us, and we can make the selfish one or we can make the right one.”

There was a part of Yuri that could still picture running out the door and screaming the truth to the world, a big part of him that wanted to do nothing in the whole world more than that, but the other part, the one keeping him there holding Ryosuke in his arms was the one that mattered, the one who had the strongest will, the one who spoke the right truth into the situation, his hands moving to gently push Ryosuke back.

“Yes, you’re my husband…” Yuri felt a tear slowly sliding down his cheek, not even realizing he was crying, taking a deep, shuddering breath before he spoke in terms of absolution, “But you’re also an idol.”

Ryosuke groaned, not wanting to do any of this, wanting to go curl up in bed and sleep until all the chaos had abated, but Yuri wasn’t going to have it, his hands grabbing his face, forcing him to stay in the moment with him.

I’ve got you.

“You can’t keep it on,” Yuri stated firmly, his voice raising when he saw the objection rising up in Ryosuke, “No! You know you can’t…you know the truth.”

Ryosuke’s eyes were fixated on Yuri’s, taking him in, pulling strength from him, feeling the way Yuri’s conviction swam in the air around them, and he slowly nodded, feeling weak and uncertain, nervous and despondent but knowing deep down inside it was always a risk, always a gamble, and now he’d lost.

I’ve got you.

“I love you,” Yuri whispered, his voice reverent as the words floated in the air between them, “I love you with every single breath I take, with every moment I live–with every single part that is me, I love you, I will always love you.”

His emotions swelled for a moment, threatening to stop him from what he knew he had to do, because this was another one of those times in their life where the balance shifted between them and it was up to Yuri to be the one to take control, up to him to be strong enough for both of them, so he drew a ragged breath, forcing away his tears, pushing conviction through his heartache so his voice reflected his determination, “I love you, Yamada Ryosuke.”

Ryosuke whimpered, feeling Yuri shifting, knowing what he was intending, his entire body trembling under the weight of his grief, the words he wished to say, both good and bad, in response stuck in his throat, feeling Yuri’s hands moving to grab his own, and as Yuri leaned forward, pressing his lips delicately against his, their eyes connected, words and feelings and emotions passing between them as one of Yuri’s hands held his wrist and the other, with great care, slid the ring off of his finger.

“I love you,” Yuri murmured, his lips soft against Ryosuke’s as he drew the ring into his palm, closing his fist around it, “I love you.

“I–I…” Ryosuke sobbed, a fresh wave of tears flowing from his eyes, his hand jerking closed as he felt the emptiness where the ring had been for so long, reminding him, always shining at him to say ’I have this beautiful, precious gift, it’s mine’ since he couldn’t tell the world, he often felt like it was a way to acknowledge how blessed he truly was not just privately or just in public–but every hour, every minute, every single moment he lived.

I’ve got you.

“Shh,” Yuri shushed him softly, tucking the ring into his pocket before he affectionately brushed the tears away from his face, his eyes fixed on Ryosuke’s as he tried to make things right, “I love you, and it’s true with or without a ring on your finger, right? Isn’t it?

Ryosuke nodded weakly, but Yuri wouldn’t let him get by with it, “I’m here, I’m your husband, I mean honestly, I willingly went through all of the fiasco to have your damn name as my own–so, you know, I’m yours forever, there’s no getting rid of me. We have a marriage certificate hanging up in the hallway that verifies we’re really married, I mean, if you want to go take a look at it again, just to prove it to yourself–because I am your husband. Yesterday, before this, today before this moment, and tomorrow and every day even after this…I’m yours.”

Ryosuke shook his head, wanting to protest, because while he understood this, he still didn’t want to do it, but Yuri wasn’t finished, “Plus, one day…”

Yuri swallowed thickly, his eyes fluttering closed for a moment as he allowed himself to imagine his greatest desire, and when they opened, he spoke with such passion, Ryosuke’s breath was stilled within him, “Someday, I believe that they’re gonna let me go down there to the municipal building and I’ll have the honor of placing my name into your koseki the right way, so I can be yours in every way…officially, even here in Japan. No loopholes, no clever manipulations, no international weddings, just the simple act of making you mine, and me yours in the only way that could make us any more official than we already are.”

The words were reverent, laced with a promise held together with so many layers of love and affection it made his heart beat faster, Ryosuke blinked in affection as he thought about a future where they really could put their names onto his registry together, on the proper lines, permanently written in indelible ink, and when Yuri leaned forward, pressing a firm kiss to his lips, grinning, his voice was soft and gentle, “But until then, I’m yours in all the ways I can be for now–and that ring–it was just a symbol–it doesn’t hold any power or truth we don’t already have right here between us already.”

Yuri smiled when Ryosuke nodded, because he knew it was true, of course he did, but…

“I know you liked the way it felt, the weight of it on your finger, the meaning it held,” Yuri smiled humming in understanding, his voice laced with tenderness, “I understand how you felt about it, but we’ll find another way for you to express the meaning…okay? Together we’ll figure out a way…”

Ryosuke couldn’t help but smile at how earnest Yuri was being, his voice watery and broken, “Chiisana…”

Yuri shuffled forward, his hands holding Ryosuke’s cheeks, tugging gingerly to pull him up, closing the distance between them, his voice a whisper across his skin, “I love you.”

“I love you,” Ryosuke returned, his voice delicate and gentle, lifting his head to rub his nose against Yuri’s with great affection before he pressed a delicate kiss to his lips, drawing back only far enough to see him clearly, “Thank you.

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