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Yamada Ryosuke & Chinen Yuri

Relationship

Yamada x Chinen

Ship Name

Yamachii
Yamachine

Type

Chaptered Story

Genre

Angst, Fluffy, AU, AOB, Alpha/Omega

Rating

R (Non-explicit) at the start, but the Epilogue will likely be NC-17

Warnings

MxM Relationship, Alpha/Omega Traits, AU

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Synopsis

When he left to take a shower, Yuri watched him until the bathroom door closed, staring at the black wood for so long his eyes grew dry and he was forced to blink them, and then...he cried.

Grabbing Ryosuke’s pillow and burying his face in it, he wept into the fabric that smelled so strongly of him it was like drowning in it, glad he had enough time through the night to perfect his thoughts, to hide his true feelings from the bond, thankful he’d left when he did so he could release all of his tears for what might have been. For the dreams he’d naively fostered, for the plans his fragile heart had made through the years...for all the moments that would never be.

Best friends.

It’s better than not having him at all, isn’t it?

He wasn’t sure how he could do it, how he could recondition his heart to not love Ryosuke but for the sake of their friendship, for the sake of having him in his life—he would have to try.

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Story Rating

What we know so far: (refer to this section at the start of each chapter for recaps of the chapter before)

Our Members–

Ryosuke:
-discovered a scent that seemed to be the perfected smell in the universe eminating from Yuri
-feels a violent need to protect Yuri, growing stronger
-sensed a change in Yuri’s smell when he was being threatened
-his need to smell Yuri’s scent is ampliphied by Yuri’s need for his
-has something intense happen to himself when he is exposed to his neice for the first time
-Yuri’s presence brings the crisis to a close
-coming as a surprise to no one–he is a hybrid lol

Yuri:
-instantly felt healed by being in the same room as Ryosuke
-felt himself take on qualities that were Ryosuke’s (resulting in some of Ryosuke’s scent shedding from him) when being threatened
-knows that he and Ryosuke will always be together
-discovers he’s attracted to Ryosuke
-can smell Ryosuke’s Alpha scent
-doesn’t want to address this with the others
-resolved the physical situation happening with Ryosuke by touching him

ABO–
-a cycle forms with the emotional and/or physical responses between the AO
-for example, if one of them becomes fixated on the other’s scent, then the other will feel compelled to smell the other, and the desire will grow from them feeding from one another’s responses

Alphas:
-can be arrogant and self-centered

Omegas:
-the more important part of the ABO system
-biological system designed to help with repopulation
-physiology is unique
-have abilities the Alphas do not
-responsible for the development of love in the ABO system

Ryosuke was exhausted.

The level of physical fatigue had reached an alarming point, and he knew that the others would be insanely angry at him for letting things go this far for a role, but he did have the care of a doctor and he was doing things the best he could that would ensure his own personal safety but also allow his full commitment to the role.

That said, he was starving.

He had literally been awakened by the loud rumbling of his stomach.

Minutes ticked by as he contemplated what he should do. Whether he should cave in and get a nibble of something to eat—or if he should persevere through this, see this to the bitter end and force himself to sleep.

He jumped, his entire body fused with fight or flight when someone knocked on the door, his eyes darting to the clock which shone at 3:00am.

“Yes?” he had the covers pulled up to cover himself, his eyes peeking over the edge to the door like if a specter or demon had come to visit him and was kind enough to knock they would be deterred by his duvet.

He sighed in relief when the door moved slowly and Yuri peeked his head into the room, he seemed timid and shy, his voice soft, “I’m sorry to come bothering you at this hour…but…”

Ryosuke shifted, moving up onto his elbows to better see Yuri as he came into the room, closing the door before he moved over to Ryosuke, a tray in his hands, uncertainty in his words, “I know it…it’s…probably…presumptuous of me to have done this…but I…I was worried and…”

The first thing Ryosuke smelled was Yuri, his toes flexing as he felt the wave of pleasure rush across his system, and then he smelled something else—curry.

He jerked up to look at the tray Yuri was holding, discovering a bowl of curry there with a side of rice and what smelled like it was a sort of herbal tea, his eyes wide as he looked from the tray of food to Yuri, “What is…is this for…me?”

“Yeah,” Yuri nodded, gesturing with his head for him to make room for the tray, which Ryosuke did, watching as Yuri leaned over the edge of the bed to carefully place the tray on the bed where he’d given him space.

Ryosuke had a moment of curiosity, about Yuri arriving with this food at this exact moment, about so many things, but he couldn’t really piece together any kind of truly coherent thought, not with the smell of Yuri and the food invading every sense.

He picked up the bowl of rice, unceremoniously dumping it into the larger bowl that held the curry, picking the chopsticks and the bigger bowl to shovel a large bite of the stew into his mouth without preamble.

Yuri sat slowly down on the bed, his eyes wide as he watched Ryosuke eating the food he’d made. He wasn’t sure if it was any good, after all, he wasn’t the cook in this friendship—rather he was the needy child—but somehow, in the last few weeks, he’d realized that wasn’t, in fact, absolutely could not be the only role he had to play. He’d asked Ryosuke’s mother to share her curry recipe and she was delighted to do so, actually having him come by her house so she could teach him to make it herself. He’d replicated everything he’d learned that day to make the stew he had given to Ryosuke.

Ryosuke hummed in satisfaction as the bite of food caused him to become lost in nostalgia, knowing this flavor, this taste, and somehow it was made even sweeter because he knew that Yuri had made it.

Whatever self-control Ryosuke had used up until this point to stay true to his diet was lost the moment the stew touched his tongue, quickly taking another bite, too excited to use proper manners, his mouth full as he chewed and attempted to talk at the same time, “Oh my gosh, Yuri…this…this is so delicious!”

Yuri stared at him for a moment, processing the noises he made to attempt to make sense of the words he meant, finally understanding and smiling brightly, “You like it?”“

Ryosuke shook his head violently, taking another bite, “LOVE it!”

“I’m glad,” Yuri spoke softly, feeling unbelievably fulfilled to see Ryosuke finally eating something, “I worry about you.”

Ryosuke had taken enough bites to not be quite so ravenous, slowing down as he looked over at Yuri, realizing it was 3am and he was awake feeding him curry. He cleared his throat, setting the bowl and chopsticks down on the tray, “I don’t mean to make you worry…but…I’m glad you care enough to be here.”

“Of course,” Yuri responded, shrugging, as if there was no where else he was meant to be at this moment, and to him? Maybe there wasn’t?

“Are we…ummm,” Yuri tried to figure out how to say what he wanted to say, nervous, his hands twisting in his lap, “It’s just that you and I are…will we ever…just talk about this?”

Ryosuke didn’t even have to contemplate what ‘this’ was. He knew, in his heart, he’d felt this coming for a while now—too many moments of words and questions sitting on the tip of their tongues for them to continue to ignore it indefinitely. He knew there was going to be a day when they had to discuss the strange things going on and what they meant, what they were going to do and how they’d handle them…maybe he didn’t expect it today, but it didn’t matter when or where or why—it would be a challenge.

“I’m a hybrid…and I think you are too,” Ryosuke blurted out without even considering how shocking the words would be…but if they were indeed, shocking, it would be impossible to tell because Yuri just held his gaze, a small smile tugging at his lips.

“Ya think so, do you?” Yuri grinned then, shrugging, “Took you long enough to figure it out.”

Ryosuke scoffed, not believing that somehow Yuri already knew the truth, “Surely, you aren’t trying to say you knew?”

“I didn’t know what it was called specifically, like hybrid or whatever, not at first,” Yuri admitted, his hands clasped together in his lap, “But…I knew from long ago that I was not a normal human and I had started to research all the way back then to figure out who I was and what this was all about.”

“Huh,” Ryosuke was surprised, not remotely expecting for Yuri to have such an explanation nor understanding for what they were experiencing.

“So…you’re an Alpha, I’m Omega…what does this…actually mean for us?” Yuri sneaked a peek over at Ryosuke who had slid the tray of food across the bed, his head tilting as he looked at Yuri.

“I dunno,” Ryosuke meant it, he really, genuinely had no idea what it meant, “I just…there’s a lot of information out there that seems wrong, or is clearly fabricated—it’s hard to say what’s true and not though, ever since the government locked everything down…it’s…really hard to find reputable sources for information…I mostly learned from these letters my grandmother left me.”

“You what?” Yuri was surprised by this, looking around the room for wherever this treasure was located.

Ryosuke laughed, shuffling to the edge of the bed, carefully retrieving the tray to set it on his dresser, and then ducked under his bed to pull the box and binder out. He gestured for Yuri to look, “It’s okay, you can read them?”

Yuri watched as he took the lid off the box of letters, reaching over to run his fingertips across them in reverence, “They’re letters from your grandmother?”

“Yes,” Ryosuke nodded, opening the binder and turning it so Yuri could see the first letter, his eyes widening when he saw how many letters there really were, “She was a hybrid too.”

“Whoa!” Yuri was shocked, his eyes wide as he considered this information, “But…I thought they had only started to appear again in the last few decades?”

“Just stupid stuff the government wanted to say, they thought that it wasn’t going to continue to expand and mostly just wanted to shut everyone up about it,” Ryosuke shrugged, “There are quite a few like her but most of them ended up in psych wards and institutions because the government convinced their families that they were just crazy and there was nothing unique about them biologically.”

“I’m sorry,” Yuri reached over to touch Ryosuke’s hand, and he felt the sincerity of his feelings.

“Thank you,” Ryosuke smiled, squeezing his fingers in return, “You really can read them if you want, I haven’t finished sorting them, it’s just overwhelming so it’s taken me far longer than it should have.”

“You’re sure? It’s okay for me to read them?”

“I’m positive, there’s nothing I want to keep from you. Not now, not ever.”





Ryosuke stretched, a tiny squeak sounding as he felt his muscles extending and then he drew his arms and legs back up quickly, startled awake when he’d felt someone else in the bed with him. His memory flashed back to the night before, to Yuri and the stew and the letters.

He glanced over to discover Yuri curled up into a small ball on the top covers of his bed, the box of letters now completely empty and the binder filled to the brim with all the letters in protective sleeves.

Ryosuke’s eyes were wide as he gingerly slid the binder over to look at it, careful to not disturb Yuri, fascinated as he flipped through all the letters he had not read yet.

He jumped when Yuri spoke softly from beside him, “Did you know she had an Alpha?”

“Who?” Ryosuke was confused by the question.

“Your grandmother,” Yuri gestured to the letters, “She explains it in there.”

“I…I…no, I didn’t know,” Ryosuke admitted, suddenly wondering what other types of mysteries were held in the letters he hadn’t gotten to.

“She did, she married him, it’s why your parents were so mad at her…”

“I thought that was because of the whole hybrid thing?” Ryosuke was confused, because that’s all they ever said.

“Yeah,” Yuri yawned, stretching like a tiny kitten and all Ryosuke wanted to do was to hug him, his voice still soft with sleep, “That was just an excuse they used, it wasn’t that, it was about the Alpha, they didn’t approve.”

“Huh,” Ryosuke was surprised, and wondered if after all these years if his parents would talk to him about it and explain why they felt the way they did, “I had no idea.”

“Everything in there is very…” Yuri took his time choosing the right word, “Enlightening.”

“Enlightening, huh?”

“Yeah,” Yuri nodded, “Your grandmother was a brilliant woman—she had a doctorate degree in a special branch of science that studied human growth and forms including hybrids—she was on the cutting edge of research, even though she wasn’t respected among her peers thanks to the government’s influences.”

Ryosuke felt a little guilty that Yuri had found all of this out about his grandmother instead of him, but he dismissed it when Yuri shook his head, clearly knowing what he was thinking, “Don’t do that, your grandmother wouldn’t care about who found out, only that it was found.”

“I guess,” Ryosuke flipped through the pages, “What else was there?”

“Well, the obvious—you’re an Alpha and I am an Omega. Alphas can have more than one partner…but really, she says they don’t normally, because it’s sort of rare, since most of them end up in a committed relationship.”

That immediately caused Ryosuke to frown, not able to imagine a world where he would want a partner that wasn’t Yuri and the very thought of Yuri with anyone else made his blood boil.

“Alphas actually change the chemical composition of their Omega—it’s actually pretty crazy.”

“What do you mean?” Ryosuke was curious, finding the scent thing a little insane to be honest.

“Well, like…Betas smell good, like not great but not bad either, sort of neutral. But Omegas who aren’t marked will smell good too—like it’s their advertisement of sorts to all the Alphas that they’re available or whatever.”

“Wait…” Ryosuke’s head was spinning, “I mean, so people can just end up with anyone? It’s just sort of random?”

“I don’t think it’s quite that simple, I mean I think there’s some physiology stuff, pheromones and things like that which all play a role on a biological level.”

Yuri shrugged, “But I suppose everyone has a ‘type’…it would be more like if that ‘type’ was one the trait recognized I suppose.”

“Huh…” Ryosuke wondered a bit about that, curious if he had never met Yuri would he be this convinced he’s the one for him?

“When an Alpha marks an Omega as their mate—it’s like their scents become combined—it changes completely on a cellular level—based on several things like composition of hormones, pheromones, and even how ‘highly ranked’ the Alpha is—it’s sort of weird that those kinds of things can effect it—but the Omega who has been marked smells bad—like become repulsive to other Alphas to deter them from messing with the Omega when they are marked to someone else.”

“What is marking?”

“Oh,” Yuri blushed furiously, causing Ryosuke sit straight up, paying close attention to him.

“Well,” Yuri drew the word out, clearly hoping Ryosuke would think of something far more important he wanted to know, something that wasn’t nearly this embarrassing, but when he didn’t throw out a new question he cleared his throat, “Umm…Your Granny mentioned it so I sort of looked it up online—to find out what it was and why…but apparently hybrids don’t really have a marriage ceremony like humans do…well, I mean I guess they do it normal now, but as far as their own practices—like cultural but really physical and biological as well—it is initiated by…biting each other’s neck.”

“What?” Ryosuke tried to wrap his mind around this concept—because frankly, hurting each other doesn’t seem very much like marriage making material.

“It…It’s not really the neck…it’s this gland, like right here,” Yuri’s hand lifted, pointing to the juncture where his neck met his shoulders, “That’s where they…umm…bite each other, and ah…” Yuri’s face turned an even deeper shade of red, “It doesn’t hurt, it apparently feels good.”

“Wha—” Ryosuke couldn’t piece this information into a proper place, his mind whirling when Yuri blurted out words so quickly they combined together into a single long word, “…becausetheybiteeachotherwhilethey’rehavingsexsoitdoesn’thurtitfeelsgood.”

Ryosuke’s head tilted to the side as he attempted to decipher what Yuri had actually just said and when he finally did, he understood the way he was blushing, his own cheeks heating up as he thought about that, his eyes shifting to Yuri’s neck, the collar of his t-shirt loose, exposing his collar bone on one side and all Ryosuke could think was literally one word.

Yes.

I need.

He shook his head, trying to get a hold of himself, worried Yuri was going to pick up on all of his feelings through the aura, but instead, Yuri sat up, rubbing his eyes and all Ryosuke could think was how absolutely adorable he was, yawning loudly before he continued talking, “There’s so much more to it all…more than what I’ve ever read before according to these letters—your Granny…she had visions…it was part of her gift—and she saw a special kind of hybrid evolving—she was convinced that you were the first of the new race of hybrids for some reason.”

“Me?!” Ryosuke couldn’t imagine why she thought such a thing, confused by this information, “Why did she think that?”

“She saw it in her visions, she doesn’t really expand on it, it was like she was trying to be sure to not reveal too much to stop you from letting it become too important in your life—she had a lot of respect for the trait—something pretty rare when it comes to those who speak openly about it.”

“The only thing she said about the thing she called ‘super-hybrid’ was that they were created to be powerful, to be leaders of the new era of hybrids.”

Ryosuke tried to understand, “You mean they have special powers?”

“Well, I don’t know,” Yuri stretched lightly, “I mean, like I said, she was rather vague on things—but…the one thing she did say is that they weren’t like the other hybrids because they were capable of this thing called ‘soul-bond’ which set them apart from the other clan members. It made the two of the strong, powerful because they had a special bond that allowed them to access one another’s powers, thoughts, energy, and will when they needed it.”

“Huh…” Ryosuke tried to keep his expression impassive, trying to stop the link from betraying his reaction to that information because he’d seen a bit about that on the internet and he knew, without a doubt, that it was the kind of Alpha he was. He could sense it on a molecular level, and unless he was stupidly mistaken, he could not help but believe that Yuri was his soul-bond Omega. He knew, full well knew, that Yuri was definitely not ready for level of insanity so he was determined to keep him from thinking it.

“Did anything you read help you with what…with us?”

“I think it’s okay to just keep being me and you, isn’t it?”

Ryosuke studied him, checking the air around them for any sign that Yuri was somehow misleading him or covering up something but sensed nothing untoward, “We don’t have to…change anything?”

“No,” Yuri shrugged, “I guess…there are still choices to be made, and we don’t have to make a choice we don’t want to. So, we can just stay best friends and everything will be fine.”

Ryosuke stared at Yuri’s hand, as it absently touched the smooth surface of the page he was on, then looked up at him, his eyes looked normal, calm and clear, and he seemed sure of what he was saying, so he swallowed down the words he wanted to say, the ways he wanted to protest, choosing to honor Yuri’s desires, working hard to ensure the connection between them didn’t betray him, to exude enthusiasm and happiness over this decision, “Okay then, best friends is great!”

When he left to take a shower, Yuri watched him until the bathroom door closed, staring at the black wood for so long his eyes grew dry and he was forced to blink them, and then…he cried.

Grabbing Ryosuke’s pillow and burying his face in it, he wept into the fabric that smelled so strongly of him it was like drowning in it, glad he had enough time through the night to perfect his thoughts, to hide his true feelings from the bond, thankful he’d left when he did so he could release all of his tears for what might have been. For the dreams he’d naively fostered, for the plans his fragile heart had made through the years…for all the moments that would never be.

Best friends.

It’s better than not having him at all, isn’t it?

He wasn’t sure how he could do it, how he could recondition his heart to not love Ryosuke but for the sake of their friendship, for the sake of having him in his life—he would have to try.

He knew the truth, after contemplating everything about the bond, about their connection about what was and what could potentially be–after allowing himself the freedom to imagine and dream–and to consider the chances of overcoming his own irrationally fearful feelings about the Omega trait–he realized that there was an entire facet he had not considered.

He could only imagine that Ryosuke had not as well.

Ryosuke would lose everything.

He would lose everything in his world he had worked so hard for.

He would lose his career, his fans, his life.

Yuri knew without even having to think about it–Ryosuke would give it all up for him, he could feel it in the bond so many times when Ryosuke wasn’t actively trying to pretend to be unaffected, Yuri knew it, but he also knew that he could never let him do that–he could never let him give up everything he wanted, all the things he’d striven for. 

Impossible.

I love him too much to hurt him that way.

Ryosuke slid down the door, his hands scrubbing at his eyes as the tears fell, moving into his hair to pull hard on it in frustration. He had no idea how to do this, how to be a ‘friend’ to Yuri when all he wanted was to just tell him how deeply and truly he loved him.

But he needed Yuri to be happy, and if he couldn’t see Ryosuke that way, then he knew it was his only choice to be willing to settle for friendship—because having him in any way is better than not having him at all. This wasn’t a time in his life to be selfish, to think only of what he wanted, it was a time to take Yuri’s feelings into consideration and do what was best for him–not force an outcome that would only make himself happy and not Yuri.

I love him too much to hurt him that way.


Ryosuke was trying to keep his mind in the dream, loving the way the purple water tipped over the edge of the waterfall, the splashes making Yuri blink his eyes at the cool mist, laughing softly as he pulled him closer–but, it was useless, his brain telling him there was something more important happening, and as he drifted in the space between dream and reality he tried to make sense of what he was hearing.

“Ryosuke!”

His eyes opened slowly, his hand reaching out before he was fully aware of what was happening, reaching for Yuri, his body in motion without comprehension—help him.

Of course, he wasn’t there, his hand landing on the emptiness on the other side of his bed…scrubbing at his eyes trying to make sense of what he’d heard, why his heart was pounding like a drum in his ears.

He heard it then, the sound reaching him from the room next door, a plea, a cry, his name, and he was in motion, running out of his room, the door to Yuri’s room slamming into the wall so hard he was sure it had punched a hole but he didn’t care.

He rushed to the bed, his vision limited in the dark, his hands frantic hitting a pillow, shoving it away in frustration as he tried to find Yuri in desperation, a disturbing energy emanating from where he finally discovered Yuri curled up in the middle of the bed.

His body was shaking, eyes moving to where Ryosuke was half on, half off the bed, a soft whimper reaching between them, his expression contorted in obvious pain as his body curled more deeply in on itself, his arms clenching around his stomach.

Ryosuke scrambled over to him, touching his forehead, checking for a fever, but his skin didn’t feel hot at all—rather, it felt cool to the touch, trying to keep his panic at bay, he swallowed hard, “Yuri?”

Yuri’s eyes seemed to be fighting to stay open, his brows drawing down, mouth opening and closing before he shook his head, the words hoarse on his dry lips, “It—It hurts.”

Ryosuke was in motion, lunging across the bed to grab Yuri’s cell phone, unlocking the screen to call the emergency services but Yuri’s hand shot out, grabbing his wrist to stop him. Ryosuke twisted to look at him in confusion, Yuri’s eyes pleading.

“Let me call someone for help,” Ryosuke tried to pull his hand away, but Yuri wouldn’t let him go, his head shaking.

“Why not?” Ryosuke couldn’t understand and was seconds away from using more force than he’d like to in order to get Yuri to let him go.

“It—it won’t…” Yuri bit his lip as another wave of whatever was happening hit him, causing him to gasp, and then he forced the words past his lips, “Th-they can’t help me with this.”

Yuri’s hand dropped, using all of his energy, he groaned, his eyes clenching closed tightly, then he pushed at his cellphone still in Ryosuke’s hand, the word pained, “Browser.”

Ryosuke fumbled with Yuri’s phone, watching in horror as his body melted into a trembling mass as he wrapped his arms around his abdomen, his fingers clumsy in his desperation to get the phone open, to get whatever answer might be held here, but once he opened the screen he was still confused, because there were at least twenty tabs open in Yuri’s browser, but none of them made any sense.

stabbing exploding pain in lower abdomen

Looking at the results—most everything was referencing issues that women had with their periods and such…so Ryosuke clicked to the next tab.

stabbing exploding pain in lower abdomen in a guy

This one had different answers, mostly involving the bladder and urinary tract infections.

can your bladder explode

Long story short…yes.

If your bladder explodes will you die?

Shorter still. Yes.

What is the feeling of your bladder exploding a symptom of?

Ryosuke slid the screen down as he looked for anything that could give him a clue as to what was happening, and then he saw it.

Somehow, using this single question an obscure Alpha/Omega site had shown up in the search results, and while he knew Yuri didn’t click on that link, he also knew it was enough to make him wonder.

So, he was not surprised with what he discovered as the search terms for the next tab

stabbing explosive pain in the abdomen that feels like you’re dying +omega

There were fifty-five results returned.

Ryosuke’s mouth went dry, his heart clenching in his chest, his eyes flashing over to Yuri and then back to the screen as he tapped on the final tab which contained an article written by some doctor who expounded on a theory about what would happen to modern humans if their Omega trait was activated.

As Ryosuke’s eyes skimmed the article he became more and more alarmed—because if even part of this were true…

His mind whirled when the words popped up off the page to him.

Theoretically, the subject would transition through a series of changes, in all probability rapidly, which would allow the biological and physical aspects of the trait to function properly. It is believed in this way, that it would be akin to the process of evolution within a developing fetus—the tissue necessary to create the organs are already present, lying dormant until they are needed. At the time when the trait is activated it is considered that the most likely response from the Omega’s physical form would be to also initiate the changes necessary to become a fully functional Omega.

There are changes necessary for a female Omega, however, by comparison they are minor, and the few biological changes would happen fairly quickly which would undoubtedly result in pain.

For male Omega, the process would be more involved, and likely last quite a bit longer, with high levels of pain given the overarching changes necessary involving present organs and those which would be evolving. The body would go into a state of transformation in which the dormant tissue would expand and multiply to form the Omega’s functional reproductive system. At this same time, the Omega glands throughout the body which would have been present at birth but not fully developed will also emerge and begin to mature.



Ryosuke searched the text desperately for information on how to help, what to do, how to fix it—but there was nothing. Throwing the phone to the side, he turned to Yuri who was staring at him, his eyes soft but clear with pain, his lips pinched into a thin line as his body jerked as a new wave of pain hit him.

“What can I do?” Ryosuke begged, “Please, what do I do? How can I help?”

Yuri shook his head, his eyes clenching shut as he groaned, his arm flinging out, desperately needing Ryosuke near him. Ryosuke laid down, moving over to hold Yuri in his arms, careful to not hurt him, pressing a tender kiss against his forehead, feeling completely helpless, not a feeling he was particularly used to feeling—being a man of action and problem solving.

“Hold me,” Yuri murmured, “Please.” He whimpered, pressing his face against Ryosuke’s chest as he pulled him further into his arms.

Ryosuke held Yuri as close as he dared, worried still he might hurt him, and he could feel it, the way every single muscle in his body was tensed from the pain, it was like they were all contracted at once, and there was a low level vibration that was shaking him ever so slightly, his fingers clenched onto Ryosuke’s shirt as if he were his only tether to the world around him.

Ryosuke tried to focus himself on sending comfort to Yuri through their connection—because if they could use it for so many other things, why couldn’t they use it for this? Why shouldn’t he at least try—so he pressed his lips against Yuri’s forehead beaded with sweat, his entire being focused on Yuri’s breath against his chest.

In his mind’s eye he could imagine the soft waves of an ocean crashing at their feet, the smell of the salt in the air that would brush cool against their sun-heated skin. The echo of wings flapping in the sky above, and the feeling of warm sand between their toes. Their eyes sparkling as much, if not more, than the water cresting beyond the breaks—holding each other close so that nothing beyond that single moment could touch them, and he felt it when Yuri’s shoulder relaxed, so he kept his mind in that dream, holding them both there, hyper focused on every minute detail.

This worked for a while, even to the point where Ryosuke was fairly certain Yuri was sleeping through some parts of the transition—but then he bolted, his entire form smacking into Ryosuke’s as if he were trying to get away from whatever was trying to hurt him.

“Yuri!?”

Yuri’s eyes were wild with fear, his breath coming out in rapid bursts, his expression twisted in pain, his fingernails digging into Ryosuke’s arms, “I—I can’t…it’s…”

Before he could say anything else his body flew back against the mattress, his form contorted and twisted and Ryosuke felt himself suddenly caught up in the connection between them and he felt it, he could feel the pain sneaking around the edges of his own feelings, his hands clenching into fists as he knew whatever he was feeling was just the part that made it past the natural barriers into their connection.

But it was enough, he knew…he could tell, and then Yuri was crying, his voice broken as he plead for help, for it to end, and Ryosuke grabbed him up into his arms, intent on taking him to the emergency room, regardless of whether they had any idea what this was, or how to help him, surely they could do something for him, anything for him, because he couldn’t do this—couldn’t watch this—had to do something.

“I’m gonna get you help,” Ryosuke whispered, trying to drag himself and Yuri both to the edge of the bed, but Yuri had latched onto him, his arms and legs wrapped around him as he sobbed into his shirt, his voice frantic as he spoke words that didn’t make sense, didn’t even sound like real words at all, and then when Ryosuke’s feet hit the floor, and he tried to lift Yuri, he realized, the room was silent.

Apart from the sound of Yuri’s breathing against his chest, there were no other sounds, which should be comforting but he found it unnerving, borderline terrifying after so many hours of chaotic pandemonium.

“Yuri?” He tried to pull back, tried to drop Yuri onto the mattress so he could see him, so he could make sure he was okay, but Yuri wasn’t having it, his arms clung to him tighter, shaking his head against his chest, his voice muffled in his shirt, now wet from his tears, as he spoke the word, “No.”

Ryosuke sighed, doing his best to shift against him to get them onto the bed fully, pulling him to the side until he could at least tilt his head down to see Yuri’s face, which seemed smooth and serene. There was nothing there that he could see that indicated he was suffering anymore, and instead, he was fairly certain he had fallen asleep.

“Yuri?” As much as Ryosuke was loath to wake him up, he could not possibly live without knowing he really was okay—because what if he’d just passed out from the pain? That was a thing—he knew it was…there were too many variables he didn’t have answers for, so even though he didn’t want to, he shook Yuri, forcing him to wake up.

Yuri’s eyes blinked open slowly, lifting up to look at Ryosuke, his death grip on him loosening as he drew his arms forward, to touch Ryosuke’s cheek, his voice cracking, rough and dry, “The beach…was…nice.”

Ryosuke felt relief flood through him, laughing softly as he pulled Yuri against him, holding him as close as he dared given the fact he wasn’t sure how he was feeling physically at all, “Are you…” he drew back, needing to see him to be sure, “Are you okay?”

Yuri seemed to contemplate this, doing an inventory of himself, pulling away a bit to stretch his legs out, to roll onto his back, though his hand stayed connected to Ryosuke, refusing to let go of him, he twisted his back, shoulders, stretching and pulling his body to test it, to see if there was anything happening.

Ryosuke’s hand moved of its own accord, slowly drifting across Yuri’s form until it settled on his abdomen, soft and tender there on his belly as it rose and fell with his breathing. Yuri’s hands moved to touch his hand there, to lay over top of it, somehow both asking to be sheltered, and providing shelter at the same time. There was something so soft, so sacred, so intimate about this moment it took his breath away—his eyes fluttering closed for a moment as he savored the connection between them, impressed it upon his memory so he would never forget it. His lips curling up into a smile as he felt the comfort and the peace and the absolute joy this single moment offered him, opening his eyes to study the sight of their hands together on his form, enamored with how treasured he felt.

Then he smiled, turning his head, breaking his eyes away from their hands to look at Ryosuke, “Nothing…it’s…the pain is gone now.”

“Thank God,” the words burst out of Ryosuke’s mouth, leaning his head down to rest on Yuri’s shoulder as he took what felt like the first breath since he’d awakened at the start of this.

Yuri’s fingers moved up his back, threading through his hair, holding him close as he let him feel his feelings, let him sort through them—patiently waiting, humming softly a tune he didn’t recognize as he gently maneuvered them to face one another.

Ryosuke’s eyes blinked open, tears wet on the edges and Yuri reached out to touch his cheek, “It’s okay, everything is okay now.”

“I was…”

“Perfect,” Yuri announced factually, “Thank you.”

Ryosuke wanted to correct him because in all the world of all the things he could have done, ways he could have helped, done anything at all, how could he say such things when all he felt was lost and helpless and useless.

Yuri made a sound with his tongue, an admonishment, his lips pursing as his expression morphed in his displeasure, “You’re a fool.”

Ryosuke was starting to hate this connection and the insights it gave Yuri without his permission, opening his mouth to speak but cut off when Yuri’s finger pressed against his lips silencing him.

“You never see yourself clearly,” Yuri stated firmly, “I’m going to see to it you eventually do.”

Ryosuke couldn’t be sure about that but, the truth was, he knew if anyone was able to do it, it would be Yuri, and surely, as with most aspects of their life together, he was always up for a challenge when it came to Ryosuke.

“Are you really okay?”

“Yeah,” Yuri answered, “I…I seriously thought I was dying, I like realized I didn’t have a will or anything.”

“A will?”

“Yeah, I mean if something happened to me, I would want to make sure you got everything I had…”

“All the things I bought you, you mean?”

They laughed, and Yuri grinned, “Listen, you know as well as I do that there’s nothing at all you love more.”

“That’s true,” Ryosuke couldn’t remotely deny it, “Maybe except for you.”

In another time, in another moment, this soft confession in the midst of a moment of laughter would have caused them both to stop and to overthink and make a big deal about it, especially in light of their current agreement, the decision they’d made to remain friends. But…in this moment it just felt so natural, so pure, and there was no part of either of them that wanted to change a single aspect of it, Yuri just reached forward to bring his head down to touch his own, smiling, “Me too.”


Days had turned into weeks, which turned into months, and a delicately balanced dance had formed between the two of them–one which kept the other always at the furthest reach, still engaged in the motion, still involved in the steps, but never reaching the inner circle of the closed position–never quite facing one another.

It had become a normal part of their lives–to mask the growing heartache and pain…to cover up their sadness with business, to joke when they wanted to cry, and to walk a thin line between taking care of one another in the way they simply could not bear to not do and keep enough distance between the two of them so they would not go insane.

Ryosuke had arrived to the house before anyone else had come home, taken a shower, and then sat down in the fluffy love seat in the living room. He meant to pull out his script to work on the next scene he had to shoot the next day, he also meant to grab a snack, and maybe put some music on—but instead, he found that forty minutes had passed and he hadn’t moved.

His eyes were fixated on a picture on the entertainment center. It was a group picture of Jump from way back at their debut—the JUMP dynamics present, all of them being their typical silly selves, and he wondered at how much affection he had for them, how much he cared about them—how much they were all as brothers to him.

At that time here were ten members in the group picture but now…of course, there were only nine left. He knew that the agency did what they were supposed to do, really, what they had to do back then, because they were a group with young members and younger fans—and it wouldn’t do for them to be promoting bad behavior, let alone illegal ones.

He might understand it, but it didn’t make it any easier to cope with it—he had really struggled with it, they all had.

So much has changed since then…so much is still changing, even now.

He’d turned 20.

He was an adult now.

But…he didn’t really feel like an adult. Instead, he still felt like everyone else had power in his life, control over him, over his choices.

Illusions, paper houses, everywhere around him…and to those looking in from the outside, he was sure it seemed like a different story they were reading, something special and beautiful and lovely, but really, at least right now—it wasn’t.

My God…you’re so jaded in your old age Yamada.

He laughed softly at himself, it was the least he could do, because honestly, he needed to express some emotion and he figured laughing was preferred to crying in any case.

They’d relocated, he and Yuri—they’d secured an apartment in an upscale community—just the two of them, and it had been really great.

Most of the time, but then, there were times when there was so much silence it was deafening. The wrong kind of silence can be painful, and he felt so lonely sometimes, in the darkness in a house filled with the one person he didn’t dare to let inside his boundaries, he just couldn’t—Yuri could never know the truth.

Growing up had become so…hard.

He knew it was stupid…you grow up, you move out, you go have a big life and be independent and become a fully functional adult, you fall in love, you get married, you live a full life.

Simple.

Easy.

Complicated.

It was not what it was for others, of course, how could it be? There were no self-help books for becoming an Alpha. There were no websites or hotlines for ‘those with reactivated Alpha traits in crisis’…no there were no guidebooks, helpful forums, or social groups there for him. The few places on the internet where you could find anyone talking about this stuff–well, suffice to say that it was unsavory at best, and horrifying at worst and he only tiptoed into that cesspool when absolutely necessary.

All of this left him feeling lost, like a tether to the earth had been severed and he was floating aimlessly in the wind, unable to direct the current, weak to where it would take him.

He wanted to be different.

He could see a future he wanted to live for, honestly, when he closed his eyes? He could see a future, in bright vibrant colors, a path illuminated with joy, and by his side?

Yuri–he was always there, always next to him, always the one.

Ryosuke wanted to make it happen, he could feel it, taste it, and wanted it with everything inside himself.

But he saw it for what it really was.

An impossible dream…just like writing his own diary—filled with pages that looked the same over and over again, blank and without stories to fill them—because to see his dreams come true, it would mean hurting the person he loved—and he would never do that—so in this way—he was resigned to being alone.

There were many reasons for this, of course, not the least of which was his desire to honor Yuri’s feelings about their connection. This couldn’t be something that could be undone? It wouldn’t be right to pressure him into changing his mind, and that wouldn’t be how Ryosuke would want it anyway.

In truth, even if Yuri wasn’t in the mindset that they should remain friends–there would be other things they’d have to consider–serious issues with serious consequences starting with how their fandom might react. They had responsibilities, of course they did, and who could even begin to guess how violently they would react to this whole Alpha Omega thing? It was highly probable they wouldn’t, couldn’t understand it–writing them off to pretend characters in a manga instead of living breathing humans with genuine feelings and hopes and dreams.

Still, even if they could have full approval from their fandom, even if Yuri were crazy in love with him and returned his feelings the truth was they’d have an uphill battle with the agency.

They would never allow such a thing.

Honestly, it was one of the things he despised the most about the agency…he’d heard rumors when he was younger, so he wasn’t surprised when they began to counsel him on a regular basis, advising him against “meaningful friendships”. He really wanted to tell them to go fuck themselves and do whatever he wanted. He wanted to go pay a call girl to walk on the streets with him, to make the worst scandal ever to bring a black mark onto them, but he wouldn’t.

He wouldn’t because he knew damn well that it wouldn’t really happen that way.

He would never be let go.

Everyone else? Sure, they were expendable…but him?

Never.

He saw the threats for what they were, empty, idle threats that held no real power—because he was money for them—he knew when they looked at him, they saw dollar signs and not a human being.

No, I could do pretty much anything, probably produce my own amateur porn film and they’d applaud me, pay people off, and I’d get five more contracts.

Yet, back then, when they were still a fledgling group, they’d lost a member–not just ‘a member’ but a friend, and a talented asset to Jump.

The agency put out some stupid public statement, but they’d all been told the truth right up front.

He would not be back.

He was not returning.

Move on and keep your chins up—the public needs to see you’re okay and that this isn’t going to effect your group, that you’re still going to be strong and move forward.

He’d never been more angry in his whole life—not ever—because they told them their feelings didn’t matter, that they would not have a reaction to this, that they weren’t allowed to feel what they felt, to just do what they were supposed to.

It infuriated him then, and it infuriated him now.

They were STILL telling him what he could and could not feel, think, do or say.

Ryosuke’s fist flew out, hitting the coffee table, but he couldn’t make himself care about the pain that radiated up his arm into his shoulder, because it paled in comparison to the pain that was within his heart.

If I had been a better leader, if I had paid better attention that wouldn’t have happened.

He never said it out loud, never admitted that he felt completely responsible for what happened with Morimoto. That he believed he could have helped him. He should have seen it.

I should have realized, they all look to me to lead them and I failed everyone.

If I had only noticed.

If I had just asked him…I know if I had just reached out—maybe he would have told me, confided in me, I could have helped guide him to make good choices.

His fist flew out again.

Fuck that, I wouldn’t advise him of anything—I‘d tell him to get his shit together, this is a lifestyle he chose and we don’t have the luxury of making mistakes that can come and haunt us in the future. I would have told him to do the right thing, stop being a complete dumb ass and to do his job properly.

Ryosuke knew it was ridiculous to use the wisdom he’d gained in the years since then to imagine how he might have properly reacted then but he couldn’t help it.

He felt a tear hot on his cheek, his shaking hand rising to touch it, confused, when he saw the red streak run down his arm.

“Huh…” he twisted his hand, looking at the gash on his knuckle, but it just infuriated him. It wasn’t enough, it was never going to be enough.

“Who’s next!?”

His hand flew out, his body propelled forward off the chair, as he slammed it into the center of the coffee table, his scream echoing off of the walls, “WHO IS NEXT!?”

Again, the sound of his fist hitting the table resonated deeply within his soul—the pain somehow giving him one more breath, one more note to the song his heart seemed to be intent on writing.

His eyes moved to the picture, stumbling to the entertainment center, his hands shaking as he grabbed it off the surface, his eyes blurry…

When did I start crying?

He tried to focus, tried to see what was there in that picture.

To make sense of the blurry faces, smiling at him, seeming so happy—happy together.

But…he’d let them all down, he’d let everyone down.

All those years ago, and still over and over again today.

He had a job and he’d failed.

He still fails.

How long until he failed like this again?

Who would they lose then?

His heart clenched as his vision drifted across the faces of his members, of the boys he loves as brothers, landing on Yuri’s face.

The boy he loves.

“No.”

The word was a whisper, a soft breath in the deepest part of his soul, and he shook his head, frantically searching for a place within himself that could stop the spiral, stop the way he was moving into himself at a pace that matched the rhythm of his heart.

But…he didn’t know how to do that.

Hell, as much as the world seemed to think he had it all together, as much as his members relied on him and turned to him for his leadership, he felt lost most of the time, and then there was all of the complications of being an Alpha to contend with, the fact that he couldn’t just be normal, and in fact, couldn’t even be a normal Alpha either, and all of these things the big and small both meant one thing.

I’ll end up alone.

And there it was.

As much as he wanted to pretend everything was about everyone else, about their expectations of him, about his role in their lives, about what he was supposed to do for who—when it all was broken down into the smallest degree the truth was more than clear.

He wanted a life with someone whom he couldn’t have. Yuri was satisfied with his choices and he didn’t want to be with Ryosuke. Since Ryosuke couldn’t find it in his soul to even remotely consider another person, not on any level, it meant he would never have anyone.

Not ever.

I’m going to be alone.

I am alone.

He felt the floor shift underneath his feet, his body slumping down onto the floor, his entire spirit feeling like it fell away from him, everything spinning, because the truth was devastating.

It was a deep, brutal blow to his heart—too much, too much…

He knew he was shaking, he could feel himself trembling, he knew he was crying, but he didn’t know where he ended and the pain began—and for a moment, he wondered if this was to be the sum total of his life?

Is this who I am?

Who I am going to be?

He couldn’t imagine anything apart from this pain, and then he let himself go, gave himself over to it, allowing the black depths of despair to engulf him whole.

He didn’t know how long it had been, how much time had passed, not really, one wave of heartache and pain melted into the next—one cruel, hateful thought blended into the next—all warring with one another to create the deepest wounds.

Then he felt it.

The softness teasing around the edge of the darkness.

It was like it was calling out his name, dragging him from the arms of pain that had been holding him a willing prisoner.

“Please,” he felt like his voice was hoarse, his throat hurt, had he screamed?

Were those his cries he had heard?

“Shhhh…” there was a new sound in his ear and he froze, listening for it, trying to place it.

“Where…where are you?” he swallowed roughly, his hands moving blindly in the space in front of himself, unsure if it was his imagination or reality at this point, “I can’t find you.”

“I’m right here,” the voice whispered, and then there was something wrapping around him, and he felt warmth, a tender warmth that flowed across his skin, pulling him further from the darkness, dragging him into the light.

“I…I don’t want to be alone,” he felt tears hot on his cheek.

“You’re not,” the voice affirmed, “You never will be.”

“I’m scared.”

There was silence.

“Please, don’t leave me,” he sobbed softly against his shoulder.

His mind became suddenly silent, and the space around him, the darkness that he now recognized as their living room was silent.

Except for the tiny, little gasp, close to his ear, and he jerked back, trying to twist so he could see who was there, but it was impossible, the room was so dark.

How long was I sleeping?

He heard the noise again, a broken echo in the space around him, then he realized, recognized the sound in his ear, voice rough when he spoke, “Yuri?”

The sound was louder then, and he felt it, felt the trembling body that was pressed up against his back, curled around his form where he had fallen to the floor, probably in the exact same place, yet, there was the warmth of Yuri’s body pressed up against him, wrapped around him, comforting him.

“Yuri?”

Ryosuke tried to move, his body stiff and angry at him for the abuse he’d put it through, twisting to try to face Yuri who sobbed louder, his arms and legs tightening, forcing Ryosuke to stay where he was.

He moved his arms, wrapping them around Yuri’s, pulling him impossibly closer, drawing in a ragged breath as he felt a fresh wave of tears stream down his face, but this time they were different, they were speaking a new truth into the darkest parts of his soul.

Is this my life too?

“Yes,” Yuri whispered, a tiny hiccup against his back as he sniffled, “This is our life.”

Our life,” Ryosuke repeated the words, wonder filling him as he considered this.

Yuri’s hands held him tightly, squeezing him so hard he had trouble taking a breath, and then he was gone—a cold emptiness where he had been.

“Yuri?” Rysouke jerked around, intent on figuring out where he’d went, but he really wasn’t there, even if he could see clearly in the dark he couldn’t sense him even remotely near him, “Yuri?”

He heard him across the room, noises in the kitchen and then the bathroom, and he sat up, the room spinning, blinking at the harsh light when Yuri turned on the hall light, the indirect light still too much after so many hours of darkness.

He lifted his hand up to block the light, seeing Yuri approaching him and all he could think was that he looked like an angel, a halo of light surrounding him as he moved closer. He blinked rapidly when he sat down in front of him, trying to clear the fog from his eyes, startled when he saw his face.

His eyes were swollen, his cheeks, red and blotchy, even now, there were tears slowly making a path down his cheeks. Ryosuke’s hand moved forward without his permission, swiping across his cheek, brushing the tears away, hating every one of them.

He should never suffer.

Never hurt.

“You’re a damn idiot,” Yuri snapped, another wave of tears following despite the rough words.

Ryosuke couldn’t argue, just grunting in response then screeching when he felt the stinging sensation on his hand, attempting to jerk it away from Yuri, but he wasn’t having it, not one bit of it, his eyes flashing from the wounds on his hand up to his face, “Hold still.”

There was a tone in the words, an order of sorts that Ryosuke wanted to rebel against, wanted to tell him no, and shove him away, but he couldn’t, so he nodded slowly, relaxing his hand into Yuri’s grasp.

He watched as he tended to his wounds, carefully cleaning them, then bandaging them with their meager supplies he’d clearly cobbled together with whatever he could find, stifling the protests he wanted to make when he’d hurt him in the process.

When he’d finished, Yuri lifted his head, his eyes moving slowly, somehow bashful after all of this, to look at Ryosuke, drawing his hand up to place a tender kiss on top of the bandages.

Ryosuke’s eyes widened, his heart soaring as he watched Yuri bend over his hand, the kiss lingering as his eyes fluttered closed, his face so beautiful with his long lashes laying across his cheeks, relief flooding through him when he realized, finally, there were no tears marring his beautiful face.

Ryosuke felt a wave of emotion rush across his skin, but more than that, it felt like it was washing through his very soul. Where there was darkness suddenly there was light, and his body began to tremble under the magnitude of this moment, of the raw power flowing between them—of the raw intimacy of this moment.

He’d never felt anything like this before, never dared to dream of such a feeling—maybe not with anyone, but in particular, not with Yuri.

He dared not hope, but when Yuri lifted his eyes from his hand to look up to him, speaking softly he couldn’t help but feel the tiny spark of possibilities flare up within himself.

“We need to talk.”

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