Title: A New Game in Town
Rating: PG (R18 stuff will be posted separately)
Genre: A mix of Romance, Drama, Humor and maybe kinda Mystery too...?
Note: this is actually from kink meme, I just decided to de-anon so that I can be more serious in completing this story xD
Prompt: "Shizuo is staring out the window of the cafe he frequents when Izaya stops, stares, and kisses where Shizuo's mouth is from the glass. Is this how love begins? - AU."
Heiwajima Shizuo knows his life won't be the same again after that kiss—the one that has been sneakily stolen from him. But it is too late, nothing he can do to get rid of Orihara Izaya's existence from his head. If anything, succumbing to the sinful attraction may be the best choice. But of course Izaya won't let it happen so easily.
Other links: Ao3 - FFn
Standard fanfiction disclaimer applies. Alternate Universe. Thanks so much to annalisemarie99 annalisemarie99 for beta-ing this fic! Sorry for forgetting to post it here... I've posted this a long time ago on FFn and AO3 (I think it was last year...?). xD;
Should I laugh? Should I laugh?
Hey , should I laugh?
You see . . . people will never change.
I will never change.
Then the world, too, will never change.
Boring. Boring. Boring.
. . .
Can I really laugh?
A New Game in Town
"Shizuo, you're cracking the counter!"
Jolted back to his senses, Shizuo eyed the one who had grabbed his wrist in alert—Kyouhei. His eyebrows had curled down so sharp, Shizuo thought it was almost funny. Nonetheless it was Kyouhei's words that sank into his brain and forced him to release the poor piece of wood from his death grip. Yes, he couldn't afford to lose yet another job now.
"Wow, you're strong," Izaya said, mildly surprised, as he sat on the stool. His voice held an odd fluidity that seemed like dry breeze on a summer day. However, it was the way he smiled as he articulated those provoking words that ticked Shizuo off. Anyone else would be freaked out—but Izaya was different. If anything, he regarded it with such lightness; akin to mockery. "Anyway . . . what could you fix me?"
"Anything you'd prefer. How about Red Death?" Shizuo bit out.
"Uh, Shizuo?" Laughing awkwardly, Shinra apparently had caught the sparks of danger radiating from the interaction. "Izaya, you too—"
"Interesting offer." Izaya raised his right hand in a swift motion, the smile on his face never faltering. "But I'd prefer some Water Moccasin."
Shizuo didn't answer, ignoring the fact that Izaya's choice of beverage was that with a snake's name—a sharp comeback from the guy. But the last thing he wanted was to have more conversation with Izaya, therefore he chose to work on the requested drink in silence, refusing to see or hear anything from the man before him.
"Isn't the night still too young for Water Moccasin, though?" Shinra quickly started a conversation again, torn between the temptations to dig further into whatever happened between his two friends, or help Shizuo secure his new job.
"Are you a heavy drinker then?" Sensing the atmosphere was thicker than before, Kyouhei added in. "I understand it tastes good, but it's one hell of booze," he glanced warily towards Shizuo who was putting too much concentration on shaking the drink. At this question, Izaya laughed.
"I did drink a few sips for warmth in Russia, but I'm actually not that fond of alcohol."
"Really?" Kyouhei arched his brows so high, they disappeared into his hat.
"Really, really. I'm not drinking anything tonight." Izaya nodded, complacent. "But it's a waste if I didn't at least order something to see our beloved bartender's skill." His eyes trained solely on Shizuo as he spoke, and the cocktail shaker dented at once under Shizuo's tight grip, fluid dripping freely onto the floor.
"What?" Shizuo hissed.
Izaya looked intrigued by the show, and it seemed like he had somehow expected Shizuo's reaction concurrently—as if he was only confirming whatever suspicion he had in mind. "Ah, you ruined it. Now you have to fix me another one." He smiled all innocently while tilting his head to the side. "Right?"
"Shizuo, I need a second!" Kyouhei promptly butted in, holding his empty glass just to emphasize his purpose. Shinra mirrored the conduct immediately once he sensed Kyouhei's glare in his direction.
"Ass." Muttering through gritted teeth, Shizuo snatched the two empty glasses off the counter, and briskly dumped them into the sink at the corner. For a while he struggled to clear his mind, dripping water over his hands just to feel its coolness. In the background, he could faintly hear Kyouhei and Shinra had started talking casually with Izaya.
Taking a deep breath, he went back to the counter, preparing the ingredients needed for the drinks. He was bending down to take another cocktail shaker from the shelf under the bar, when Kyouhei asked Shinra to properly watch their friend's temper while he had to go to the restroom. Hearing Shinra's approval, Shizuo munched on his inner cheek in annoyance.
Why couldn't he live without making other people worry about the damage he'd cause?
However, a rather familiar, cheerful melody sung then, unceremoniously meddling with the mellow song that was flowing from the loud speakers. Shinra excused himself from whatever chat he was having with Izaya, before ecstatically jumping from his seat at the displayed caller ID. Without waiting any longer, he sent apologies to both Izaya and Shizuo, and stormed out of the bar to seek more privacy. Shizuo had to resist the urge to roll his eyes. Leave it to Shinra to forget his promise to Kyouhei that easily.
"Is that his girlfriend calling? He's rather excited." Izaya chuckled, his gaze still followed Shinra's trace. Yet, as he realized the answer would never come, he leaned over the counter to observe the crouching Shizuo more closely. "Shizu-chan?" he cooed.
That succeeded in making Shizuo snap his face upward, only to catch a pair of mocking eyes staring down at him.
"I'm Shizuo Heiwajima," he snarled in much hatred.
"Hence, Shizu-chan," Izaya answered lightly.
Standing up so fast, Shizuo had to catch himself to not slam a bottle of martini onto the counter. He put out two glasses, and opening the seal of the Martini, he began to prepare new cocktails for Kyouhei and Shinra. Fuck the dumbass—Shizuo would not listen to anything he said. The moment Izaya talked again, however, his resolution crumbled.
"When I came in just now—that was the second time you stared at me."
Scrunching his brows together, Shizuo paused what he was doing, though he didn't say a thing. Izaya continued.
"Coincidences do happen, yes? To think that you're a friend of Shinra . . ."
"So you usually do that to random people?" Shizuo narrowed his eyes, now locking them with Izaya's.
"What?" Izaya seemed confused at first, nonetheless he quickly proceeded to chuckle. "Oh—that. Of course not. But I admit, it was partly your fault."
"The fuck are you talking about," Shizuo growled. He poured the Martini into the glasses, trying to divert his attention whilst the familiar tension had begun spreading in his veins.
"You were staring at me, as if you were asking to be molested, Shizu-chan."
The liquid had spilled over the full glass, but Shizuo still stubbornly holding the bottle as it was—letting drops of Martini cover the floor. His eyes wide, jaw firm for he was clenching his teeth. "Oh, you don't mean it," he said through gritted teeth.
Again, Izaya chuckled—mockingly. "Not in a good mood aren't you, Shizu-chan?"
"I'm Shizuo," he nearly shouted, glaring whole-heartedly at the ever smiling creature before him.
"Shizu-chan." Transforming his nonchalant smile into one arrogant smirk, Izaya waved his index finger playfully. "Don't tell me you wish for a real kiss?"
And that did it.
In a flash, the bottle of Martini—now empty—had been thrown onto Izaya's head in clean strike, sending said man to stumble on his seat, nearly knocked to the floor if only he hadn't gripped the counter in time.
The crowd around him scattered backward, yelling in shock and some had panic painted on their faces. But Izaya himself was silent. Blood trickled down from the left side of his forehead, dampening his fringe and tracing his cheek painfully slowly. Then, a soft laughter was heard. Beginning in a low cadence, the laughter grew louder and louder—it practically shook Izaya's whole body. Sensing something shot through his spine, Shizuo instantly grabbed the front of Izaya's jacket.
"What the hell is so funny!?"
Izaya appeared to be having difficulty in stopping his laughter. Though as Shizuo shook him mercilessly, he finally did, setting his gaze right on Shizuo's with a smirk. At that very moment, Shizuo was caught off guard by the look in Izaya's eyes.
Mixed with the blue hue of the bar lamps, it was a contrasting shade compared to the fresh blood tricking on Izaya's cheek. Darker, less brilliant, like dry blood, or the ugly remains of rotten cherries Shizuo often found in the corner of his family's fridge when he was little. On top of it all, the way the eyes shone—it sent chills down Shizuo's spine. It was just like the eyes of someone that Shizuo had seen before. It was like—
"How interesting," Izaya howled, pulling Shizuo out of his trance. "Now you're staring at me like you're seeing a monster! But aren't you the real monster?"
Numerous snapping sounds resounded in Shizuo's head, and that was all it took for Izaya to be thrown onto the farthest side of the wall, making him slide down into the floor, right next to the entrance. Luckily, there was no other victim to Shizuo's rage; the guy who was standing there had leapt to the side in horror, a second before Izaya was slammed onto the wall. Though, the Marilyn Monroe poster was hardly recognizable now.
Shinra emerged from the door, followed by Simon who was quickly learning what had caused the commotion. By now the people in there had fled for their lives; the women were screaming, although some were still stubbornly watching the strongest man in Ikebukuro in action. Outside the restroom, Kyouhei merely shook his head in defeat.
Stomping outrageously, Shizuo headed towards where it was Izaya painstakingly balanced himself to stand with the help of the wall—the smirk on his face was unwavering, nevertheless.
"You know, Shizu-chan? Just because I purposefully let you injure me, doesn't mean I can't fight back," he said in a tone that was as light as air, yet something sharp could be sensed about its edge. His right hand swiftly moved, and in a split second, a black, spring assisted knife was ready in his hand. Several gasps rang from the audience at the side of such a dangerous weapon—a monster of Ikebukuro was already more than enough, and now there was another madman with a knife. The prospect was not at all tempting.
Shizuo growled dangerously. "Yeah, right. Let's see what that stupid knife can do to—"
He was forced to bounce backward; Izaya had ducked and stormed towards him in an insane speed, grinning all the while as he swung his knife repeatedly towards Shizuo. Said guy brought an arm to protect his eyes, letting the sharp surface of the knife leave traces of scars and blood through the ripped fabric of his uniform.
"Bastard," Shizuo roared; his free hand reaching for something, someone, or whatever available to throw, but there wasn't anything. Izaya continued to laugh with each slash, as though he was having the best moment in his life. Shizuo jumped to the side, ducking and swaying away from Izaya's painfully perfect aims, until he felt the hardwood of a table against his hip. Letting a sadistic grin grace his face, Shizuo raised said table above his head, before marching in Izaya's direction. Yet, as Izaya's lips twitched into a smirk and his whole body screamed of something equally crazy, Simon stepped between them and caught both of their collars in tight grips.
"Fighting is bad," he shouted in choppy Japanese, Russian accent underlying his words. "Bar is broken! People are scared!"
For a moment, Shizuo was still hissing, eyes narrowed into slits, and hands still attempting to shove the table up onto Izaya's cocky grin. After Simon shook his body more violently, lifting him off the floor by the collar, he was jerked back to reality.
Izaya still looked batshit crazy, and he swore he really wanted to kill the man. But the bar was indeed damaged—tables scattered and shards of glasses spread about the place. His attempt to not fight—to keep this last chance of a job Tom had given him, was once again proven to be futile. The wooden table slipped off of his hands, meeting the ground with a loud 'crack'.
"Calm down. Get to the backroom," Simon instructed as he released Shizuo, who stepped backward half-wobbly—lost in thoughts. Kyouhei was pulling his arm, carefully leading him far from Izaya, who was now wiping the blood on his cheek with his palm. Simon pushed Izaya back until Shinra seized him with a masked glee—a bit too eager to check on the wound and listen to the stories, if any. Simon nodded as he made sure the two were going separate ways. "Peace is good," he said one last time.
Fiddling with the keys, Shizuo groggily climbed up the metal stairs to his apartment. It was almost four in the morning, and the neighborhood was as 'lively' as a graveyard was; what with only sounds of that of an occasional dog barking and the roaring police sirens from afar—probably because some gangsters caused problems again—could be made out. Besides, the two-story apartment with only eight rooms, each occupied by unique, if not weird people, was located quite far from the bars, clubs and love hotels district. Thus, Shizuo was used to coming home without anyone to greet him back.
Unlocking the door tiredly, he stumbled inside, slipping off his shoes while reaching for the much-needed cigarette in his pocket. He kicked the door closed carelessly, not bothering to lock it again—no one was crazy enough to break into the room of the monster of Ikebukuro anyway. Plus, he didn't have anything fancy—T.V and computers could only arouse his anger, so he had no need for those.
He flicked his cigarette on, taking a long drag before tossing the lighter to the corner. He slid off the sticky bartender vest, fumbling with his tie and the buttons of his white shirt. The flickering green light on the desk stole his attention then, making him realize that he hadn't had his cell phone on him all day. He took the old, orange cell absentmindedly, checking for the emails or missed-calls that had triggered the indicator light.
Three emails; he took another long drag.
[ Subject: none
To: Heiwajima Shizuo
Sender: Heiwajima Kasuka
Brother, I heard you got a new job. Where is it?
Sent at 9.50 PM, March 18]
Shizuo let out a twirl of smoke rather exasperatedly.
Kasuka, his brother, as expressionless as a human can be, still had the warmest of hearts Shizuo had ever known. In fact, he persistently tried to be a bartender was all because of Kasuka.
That one time Shizuo tried to mix drinks in Kasuka's apartment three years ago, was far from success. He only read this book, with a recipe of Blue Lagoon on one of its pages, and tried to make use of Kasuka's lonely yet extravagant personal bar simply because he was bored. Being a rising actor, Kasuka had too much stuff he didn't even need provided by his agency, and Shizuo just wanted to do something to stop his mind from thinking that—he, who was a reject of the world, didn't belong to such luxurious place.
That fail Blue Lagoon, however, was downed empty by Kasuka, despite the fact that he wasn't really a fan of alcohol. Shizuo didn't even need any compliments, nor did he want to see Kasuka's flat expression transform into a smile. But it was more than enough. He decided to learn to be a capable bartender from that moment on. The gift from his dear brother—three full boxes of bartender uniform that carried the meaning of 'never give up'—just strengthened his will to keep trying, despite his monstrous temper always getting in the way.
Now though, he had just lost his last chance to work in Ikebukuro—or in all of Tokyo for that matter.
Slumping onto the bed, Shizuo stared at the ceiling. No, he didn't know what to say to his brother now, but maybe, maybe tomorrow he could start looking for a new bar, or even a club, or—
He sighed. That was impossible now, wasn't it?
He reached for his phone again, attempting to jail the horrible, disgusting sensations swelling up in the pit of his stomach, and read the other emails.
[ Subject: none
To: Heiwajima Shizuo
Sender: Kishitani Shinra
Sorry for leaving early. Izaya's fine. Just four stitches on the temple!
Sent at 1.13 AM, March 19]
Shizuo cringed. Four stitches, huh? As much as he hated the guy, guilt still could snake its way up to his heart. The dry, glaring reds on his arm would soon heal without the need of thread and needle, and it was a little unfair, now that he thought of it. But as the offending image of Izaya laughing like a madman and provoking him flashed in his mind, he immediately scowled, biting the cigarette with a hiss.
Four stitches were not so bad. That bastard deserved his lesson; after all he did say he purposefully let himself get injured.
With that thought, Shizuo shrugged and proceeded to read the last email.
[ Subject: none
To: Heiwajima Shizuo
Sender: Kishitani Shinra
As expected of him, Izaya dodged the questions, so I couldn't ask for what happened. But I know it was partly his fault, so I convinced him to take the responsibility! Now have a good rest, I'm going to spend the night with my beloved!
Sent at 2.21 AM, March 19]
Now Shizuo frowned, partly puzzled, partly concerned.
Responsibility? What had Shinra mean by that? If there was one thing Shizuo was sure about his friend, it was that Shinra wasn't the best person to be relied on—given his mischievous upbringing and constant nagging just so that he could get a blood sample of Shizuo's. And now this Izaya person . . .
Thinking about that guy was enough to make the familiar fury swirling inside him. He bit the butt of his cigarette and wrinkled his nose. It was clear that Izaya was only playing around with his emotions—even from the first time they met, the bastard had done that. But what was it that made Izaya manage to crawl under his skin so easily; as if the bastard had known him for ages? And why did his eyes see the world with that kind of . . . of . . .
Sighing loudly, Shizuo rose from his lying position to put out his cigarette into a metal ashtray. He stayed still for a while in that position, contemplating, remembering the swish of adrenaline rush tonight. Then for the first time in the last few hours, he allowed himself to think of those particular words Izaya had spat at his face.
"Now you're staring at me like you're seeing a monster! But aren't you the real monster?"
Shizuo laughed, dryly.
"Fuck you. I don't need you to remind me."
The Orihara Hospital had always been one of the most well-known private hospitals in Tokyo. Izaya should have been proud of it, or perhaps he was, but never had the interest to show it. When he was in elementary school, he used to play in the hospital; secretly throwing pranks to the nurses and doctors, or simply observing people's expressions when they spent their lives there. The joy when their acquaintances paid a visit, or the painful, broken heart expressions when their loved ones said goodbye, or even the ghostly pale faces they had when they knew about their illness—they were just exhilarating for the young Izaya
But that was it; nothing more special was there. Even now as he walked through the crisply white hallways after nine years of only knowing the numerous renovations and developments from pictures and emails, he couldn't feel the slightest bit of comfortable feelings one usually got whenever they visited their most memorable places. The fact that people stared at him, probably because he was passing the staff only area, didn't help at all. He combed his bangs out of his forehead in weariness, albeit his visage remained calm. As his fingers touched the cotton surface of a bandage circling his forehead, though, he smiled at the reminiscence of last night.
He was jobless and there wasn't any human trafficking report he should write, but this city was still interesting. Thrilling, if only because of one certain monster. And it was—
"Excuse me, the president director is not in his office, do you have an appointment?"
Stopping his journey to the big door on the farthest wall, Izaya turned towards the petite woman behind the desk. Rather than quickly answering her, however, he studied the way she looked at him instead—wide eyed, a little bit flustered as she strived to sit straight under his scrutiny. Her brown, shoulder-length hair was slightly messy; Izaya silently thought why someone as incapable of keeping her hair neat as this woman could be a secretary of a president director.
"Ah, it's not surprising I don't know where my father is," he said without much care, walking slowly towards the lady. "Is he even in Japan?"
"I'm Orihara Izaya."
"Oh!" She quickly slid her hair behind her ear, nervously fumbling with the pocket sized agenda on the table. "He's just—wait a moment, please—yes, he's in a meeting with the Yagiri Pharmacy director."
And you don't even remember his schedule?
Raising his brow contemptuously, Izaya kept his smile unfazed. After all, he had known his father was still in the same city as him, albeit he still hadn't done so much as to show himself to any of his parents. Well, he attempted now, but his mood to pay a family visit had vanished as fast as it came.
"He's with Yagiri Seitarou-san, yes?" he confirmed, not quite surprised to the fact that his dad is now probably talking about his return, which led to deciding a date for his wedding with the Yagiri Pharmacy's one and only 'princess', Namie.
"Yes, it should be over soon. Perhaps you would like to try his cell phone," the secretary suggested, her cheeks slightly flushed."Or would you like me to call him for you?"
Izaya laughed. "While I'm grateful for your offer, I have no interest in calling that man." At that, the lady tweaked her brows together. "But I will come again soon, when I can officially work here." He curled an ominous smile, slightly bending over to set his eyes on the same level as hers. "When that time comes, please take care of me."
The secretary clutched her agenda tighter, eyes flickering in what only could be the result of nervousness. "Li—likewise," she said, bashful. Izaya let out a snicker from his lips as he sauntered away, waving his hand heedlessly.
Humans and their predictable actions—he would never get bored of them.
But on his way passing through various divisions and halls, his amusement started to dissipate again. Watching the running children and some old people chatting with each other about their families, he indifferently noted the fact that, again, nothing special had happened. The boredom was coming, he could feel it teasing the rim of his patience. Huffing while keeping his pace steady and light, he scooped out his phone from his pocket, fiddling with the number before putting it on his ear.
After several rings, the one on the other line picked up.
"Mairu," he said.
There was a gasp, then, "I can't believe you never come home! Aren't you in Japan now?"
Sighing, Izaya rested his back against the wall, already having the urge to press the 'end' key. "At least I've told you about my coming back."
"You know it's not about me. Mother and father asked—"
"About that . . . she's out for business, aren't I right?"
"Well, like usual . . ."
If Izaya was irked by the fact, he didn't show it. "Then I don't need to come home. Not yet, anyway."
"Don't pretend you want to see me."
"Well . . . I guess seeing you after nine years won't hurt."
"Thank you. You're a wonderful little sister, Mairu." He tried to ignore the giggles on the other line. "Either way, let me know when mother comes back."
"Mm-hm, only if I remember."
Izaya hung up.
If Namie couldn't make his twin sisters to cooperate—he was sure Kururi only agreed to Mairu's stupid demeanor—then nothing could. Clucking his tongue against the roof of his mouth, he pushed himself away from the wall. Good, his mood for family time was sinking deeper and deeper now. But really, it didn't matter. If anything, the only thing he was concerned about was that he needed to delay his check-out to the hotel he was staying. But the change of plan required him to call Shinra, and that would be—
Blinking, he stopped thinking as he spotted someone—a person who clearly wasn't supposed to be there this early; judging from his outfit—getting ready to knock on one of the chambers' doors with one hand holding a bouquet of pink roses. Izaya's eyebrows rose intriguingly. At the same time, said person met his gaze, looking as confused as he was, before it looked like something had hit the boy's mind.
~to be continued~
Chapter 3 will be up soon. Thanks for reading!