Characters: Inoo Kei, Yabu Kota, Takaki Yuya
Pairings: Inoobu, mentions of Takabu & Takanoo
Genre: Slice of life (ish), drama, angst, romance, friendship
Summary: I found myself lost in another's body. My name is Inoo Kei, apparently. And they say I have amnesia.
Notes: Yay an update finally, kinda shortish sowwy :(
Chapter 3: A Talk, a Confession, and a Lie
Something that puzzled Inoo from the day he had amnesia was the seemingly lack of clues that were around him to lead him back to the life he lived previously. When his mother gave him his phone at the hospital in hopes of finding something familiar, he found his entire photo album completely empty. Not only did he not have any photos, but Inoo also had no text message chats. The phone couldn’t have been brand new, because his plastic phone case was dirty with dark spots and games on his phone showed obvious signs of strenuous, long-term efforts to achieve new high scores. So he didn’t believe that he never used the camera nor texted any body. His phone wasn't even the only suspicious indicator. Two photo frames rested on his bookshelf without pictures. One of his class photo albums appeared as if a picture had been taken out; four pieces of tape that had originally kept a picture in place stuck two pages together instead. His laptop held only research papers and projects for school.
He was left with clues that led nowhere.
Inoo smiled. “That’s nice…” he whispered to himself after Takaki and Yabu passed by him and he waved to Takaki. He felt an indescribable envy. Putting his hand to his heart, Inoo raised an eyebrow. Inoo didn’t like Takaki (and especially not Yabu) in that way, so he couldn’t comprehend why he felt this way. What did he feel jealous about? Inoo tried to shake off the feeling, but it lingered. He turned around, again watching the backs of his two upperclassmen, once again unsure and unaware of what piece of him was missing.
That night, he sat with Takaki in Takaki's dorm room. Takaki was from far, so he lived in a dorm, rather than a house (with his family) like Inoo.
As he sat drinking coffee at 11pm, Inoo noticed how attractive his friend was. Takaki's hair was pushed back gently, revealing more of the tan skin of his face. His facial structure was much more defined compared to his own soft ones. His skin was without blemishes, but Inoo snickered as he saw the other coming out of the shower with nothing but a towel around his hips.
Takaki raised an eyebrow as he walked to his clothes drawers. "What are you laughing at?"
"Nothing." Inoo smiled innocently.
"Yeah, you're weird," he sighed, slipping on a pair green and blue boxers and removing his towel. "What's been up?"
"Not anything eventful," Inoo half lied. “Well...I spoke to Yabu like two days ago...I had forgotten my watch in one of the lecture halls.”
Takaki blinked a few times, then leaned against the armrest of the chair. “I’m...surprised. What was it like…?”
“Talking to him?”
Inoo groaned. “He’s such a bastard,” he commented flatly. “He needs an attitude fix.”
“He does,” Takaki agreed immediately, but then thought about what he was saying to Yabu’s lover. “Yabu is an asshole. And that won’t change for a while, unfortunately. But be nice to him, okay?”
Inoo glared at his friend. “Hell no. To him? Do you know what he said to me?”
“He was like Sorry, I don’t want to be around someone like you; he doesn’t even know me, okay?! What did I ever do to him?”
“Correction, you don’t know him,” Takaki stated.
“I know that we were dating before or whatever, okay?” Inoo snapped, slightly annoyed now. “He’s just annoying and arrogant.”
Takaki’s eyes widened. “Who told you that?!”
“Chinen,” Inoo answered honestly. Takaki cursed under his breath.
“That little snitch.”
“Why are you all hiding so much from me?” Inoo demanded. “I just want to know about Kei. Is that really too much to ask?”
Takaki bit his cheek, at a loss for words that would satisfy Inoo. He hated to admit it, but Inoo was right. For two months, all they told Inoo was to wait. And that was exactly what he did. Inoo searched for answers on a road alone when everyone else around him had them, dangling them on poles in front of Inoo’s face. They were pulled away when Inoo reached to grab one.
"...who was Inoo Kei...?" Inoo asked, his voice soft now, almost as if he was begging for the answer. “Takaki...please.”
Takaki gripped the armrest, sighing slowly.
Inoo wanted to know.
Inoo needed to know.
The person he loved needed to know.
Takki slowly breathed in.
"Inoo Kei is my best friend," he started. He grabbed Inoo’s hand tightly with both his own. "He's a bright, random person. During the first year here, he and I never talked to each other, even though we were in the same friend group. He, no, that's not right. You and I never got close until last year. We weren’t on bad terms or anything, but we never interacted unless we had to. The first year you came here, you began dating Yabu, and so I couldn’t not like you. You made him happy, and you were friends with my friends, so everything naturally fell into place. You and Yabu go back since you guys were in elementary school. But we all grew close over these years. We’d going drinking, and karaoke, and all kinds of other stuff normal college students do. But we didn’t really get what it meant to be friends until we saw you in the hospital that one day.
I realize how much you meant to me, to us. We don’t know what happened to you, and obviously you don’t either. But you fell into a coma for about a week. When you woke up, well, it’s just as you remember. Or don’t, for that matter. The thing is…”
Takaki got closer.
“I promised Yabu that I wouldn’t tell him that you two were dating. He was afraid. He’s still afraid of seeing you, because well, well...fuck, I don’t even know. He wants you to live everything as it is now. I don’t know what’s going through his mind anymore. But look, he looks out for the best for you, but he’s...he’s not doing it right…!”
Takaki began to get off track in his speech, and his face got even closer.
“He and you might have known each other for years, but he doesn’t understand. He doesn’t understand the pain you’re going through, right, Inoo-kun? Inoo-kun, listen to me. Yabu can’t move on without you. He can’t move on without seeing you. But...but it’s better that you don’t.”
“What?” Inoo lifted his eyebrow, Takaki’s explanations getting even more puzzling by the second.
“I’m better for you than him!” Takaki yelled, and he leaned forward, quickly capturing Inoo’s lips.
The younger one sat shocked, unable to move. His eyes widened, frozen.
And their lips pulled apart, Takaki staring into Inoo’s eyes. “Because...more than him...I understand...I understand how frustrating it is. To live without answers.”
Silence prevailed, until Inoo slowly met with Takaki’s eyes.
“...can I ask one last question?” Inoo whispered.
“Aren’t you dating, Yabu, you prick?”
Takaki fell, his cheek stinging in pain as Inoo’s fist met with it.