Learning to Fall. 
by Suteishichic

Chapter Seventeen

Warnings: Yaoi, Love, Angst, Fluff, and Lots of Sex. Some kink. You've been warned ;)

Disclaimer: Nope not mine. Still in my dreams. ;)

Oishi's parents asked Eiji to dinner, actually his Mom made it impossible for Eiji to say no, especially if he had not known anything was wrong. Eiji said he would have to ask his parents but otherwise agreed without once looking at Oishi. Everything about Eiji's behavior and demeanor was subdued and respectful for Oishi's quiet family. Oishi watched, again impressed, as Eiji again charmed his parents by not charming them.

His Father asked Eiji, not Oishi, what happened at school and Eiji told him. He told him calmly what happened. He did it without any reservations or any fears, without trying to make them laugh, or worry them. It was almost like he was a different person but the same person all at once. He seemed like just a good teenager describing a strange accident he had seen but not being afraid of what he saw or what happened.

Oishi's Father asked how Eiji was. Oishi had mentioned to his parents when Eiji was injured. His Father asked if Eiji was caught up in school. Eiji was and said so. He told him both Oishi and Fuji had helped him and that his injury was healing now. Oishi's Father asked how he was doing in the ranking matches. He said that he participated, did well in the today, but was out now. He thanked him for asking.

Oishi's Father asked how Oishi was doing, to Oishi. Oishi half expected Eiji, his friend, to jump in, and he almost cringed. However, his friend said nothing and let Oishi answer. Oishi told his Father the truth. He did well today. He only lost to Fuji and thought he would be able to secure a regular spot this time around.

Oishi's Father asked if Eiji could begin studying up in Oishi's room so they could talk to Oishi. Eiji excused himself saying he would call his parents to ask them permission about dinner and start setting up his homework. Oishi was very proud of him. He knew his Father was at best overbearing, even to Oishi. But Eiji not only held up well, he instinctively attuned himself to his Father's frequency and, Oishi felt, came out way ahead.

Oishi expected his Father to lambaste him. To be furious. That would have been better. Instead his Father took off his glasses, rubbed his eyes looking tired, and said he was only thinking of sending Oishi to Saint Rudolph's because he was concerned. He worried that with everything Oishi was involved with, school, tennis, student government, friends, and now girls that Oishi was losing his focus. The school at Saint Rudolph's had more attention to individuals who tended to fall behind or get lost without more attention. His Father said he was considering it out of concern and love, not malice.

Oishi's Father was also concerned that Oishi spent too much time without parental supervision because his family was so often at his grandparents house due to his grandmother's long illness, and he would have more supervision at Saint Rudolph's. Oishi did understand but he wanted to stay at Seigaku. Plus he knew he was a good student, a good son, and none of this was his fault. He did not explain or defend his actions as his Father would not respond or respect either. Oishi realized how much like his friend Tezuka his Father was, and that people so set and rigid had a hard time seeing the world for what it was instead of through their own eyes.

Oishi's Father also asked after Fuji. And not just because he was another guy who went on the terrible movie date that started this mess. Pretty much every parent liked and admired the tensai who could be going now to university if he chose, not junior high. Oishi's Father asked if the tensai and Eiji were really friends. He seemed surprised. Oishi confirmed that indeed, they were good friends. Oishi also told his Father the tensai's younger brother went to Saint Rudolph's and then wondered if he should have. He didn't know anymore. He felt lost, drained, drowning, and the only place he wanted to be was with Eiji, holding him and being held.

Eiji's parents of course agreed to let him stay for dinner. Eiji asked Oishi's mother, after he told her he could stay, thanking her, if he could help her with anything in a perfect way. She said no smiling and Oishi understood, that it was not his mother that wanted this school change, just his Father, and that was the reason for her inviting Eiji to dinner. She was giving Eiji and even Oishi a chance.

Oishi went upstairs, and closed his door. Eiji was standing, staring, watching his fish. Oishi was not sure if he took a step to Eiji or if Eiji stepped towards him but they threw themselves into each other's arms, needing to touch each other. They stood that way for a long time.

Oishi kissed Eiji on his forehead, his face, and his lips with soft brushing kisses between almost every other word. "Thank you, thank you, thank you. You're amazing did you know that? I'm so sorry for all this."

Eiji looked at him and smiled slightly, "Nya. Its okay." Oishi was amazed Eiji had not cracked and that at the least, his friend was not crying. Oishi certainly felt like crying. Eiji cocked his head to the side, winked at him, and said, "Hoi. When you aren't strong, I am." by way of explanation. Oishi held him close and took a deep shuddering breath, smelling Eiji, feeling him, and wrapped his arms tighter around him. He made this feel almost bearable. Oishi was also dimly aware that had this happened half a year ago, or at least before Eiji, Oishi would not be nearly as devastated as he felt right now. Eiji hugged him back for a minute and then said softly, "Oishi, homework."

Oishi smiled at Eiji reminding him to study for a change. They settled down and had just started working when there was a knock at his door. His mother brought them both tea, and told them dinner would be about another hour. Then she said to Oishi, "...unless the noise is bothering you both studying, you should keep your door open a little and let some air in here." Oishi knew his house was nearly silent and this was a strong suggestion from his mother trying to calm his Father down. His Father did not need more fuel for his fire. Oishi thanked her and complied.

Eiji gave a half smile and nodded as if saying with the door open a crack they could not hold hands or touch like they had been, he understood, and knew that this was important now. He was willing to give up the short term for the long. They got a lot of work done by the time dinner was ready. They still had about an hour to go each, but were well on their way. Eiji was totally focused on his work without complaint for once. He had even called Fuji and asked him questions as Fuji was the only one out of the three of them in class that day.

Oishi had often wished he was in their class because although he had the same teachers and same classes, somehow, Eiji's notes were always more complete than his. He once asked why and Eiji shrugged saying it was the things he picked up and things Fuji picked up that he added to his notes. Oishi's notes were boring, dry, and lacked the insights Eiji's often had. On a lark, after discovering this, Oishi borrowed Tezuka's notes saying he had lost a page of his. Tezuka's looked to be an exact copy of Oishi's which made him laugh. He told Eiji this who said as if Oishi should have known, "Hoi." leaving Oishi to wonder at it.

While working, Eiji quietly filled Fuji in, talking softly into Oishi's phone. Eiji saw Oishi looking, looked upset, and turned his head away. Oishi could not hear what was said or see Eiji's face as he talked with his head facing the other way. After a few minutes Eiji was quiet. Oishi saw him nod a few times, and when he turned back, Eiji looked calmer than he had before. Oishi gave Eiji a half smile and Eiji nodded as if to say he was all right now.

A few more minutes passed, and Oishi had no idea what the cool tensai was saying, but was glad for the calming effect he was having on Eiji. Oishi knew, that he seemed okay but he was seeming okay only for Oishi. Inside Oishi felt certain his friend was probably as tense as a bowstring about to snap, Oishi certainly felt that way. Eiji had turned back to his homework, filling out things, and listening. "Fujiko-chan on page 224..." Eiji started and then looked up past Oishi. Oishi's Father was at his door watching them. Oishi had no idea how long his Father had been there.

"Excuse me. I am sorry to interrupt. Dinner is ready. Is that Fuji-kun on the phone? May I speak with him?"

Eiji told Fuji and passed the phone to Oishi's Father who walked down the hall with it. The boys washed up and went down to dinner. Everyone waited for Oishi's Father to join them. He did a long time later, a very long time.

"I didn't know that you had beaten Fuji the other day in tennis. You never told me that. He says you are doing very well and should make regulars this time around even though you are only a Junior."

"Yes, Father." Oishi said.

"You are doing well in school." A statement, not a question.

"Yes, Father."

"This is something we still should consider."

"Yes Father." Oishi felt sick to his stomach and hope he did not throw up at the table. Especially with Eiji there.

"Then its settled. Tomorrow evening, you will stay at your friend Fuji's house. His younger brother Yuuta attends Saint Rudolph's and will be home. You'll have the chance to get to know him and talk."

"Yes, Father." Oishi barely ate and what he did choke down, he was forcing himself to. He tried to focus on the rest of the conversation but little involved him. Usually dinner was a quiet affair with Oishi's Father and rarely his mother asking their children or each other questions about their day and then silence after the polite short answer.

Oishi was exhausted and very emotionally overwrought with frustration, tension, and anxiety. He needed sleep. He knew he had been running on sheer stress and adrenaline for hours now and would crash soon. Occasionally he felt a brush of someone's knee on his own. He hoped it was Eiji, although Eiji seemed engrossed in the conversation, what little there was, and paid Oishi no mind. A sudden sense of foreboding went through Oishi as if this would be the future with him and Eiji. Sitting far apart not talking or touching. Oishi felt a wrenching inside his gut at the thought and felt like he was going to be ill again.

A sharp step on his socked foot made him pay more attention. It was Eiji and he was forcing Oishi to stay with him. Oishi was very grateful and looking over at his friend, not acknowledging what he did, being the perfect dinner guest, complementing his mothers bland cooking, answering any questions Oishi's family had for him as if nothing was wrong. Basically, winning them over by being a polite muted version of his regular self. Oishi was overwhelmed with feelings for his friend. If Eiji had asked him right then and there how he felt about him, Oishi did not think he would ever have enough words. Dinner was over, Oishi and Eiji cleaned up, Eiji insisting politely even though Oishi's mom said it was not necessary. Eiji even asked Oishi where everything went, even though Oishi was sure he knew.

They went up to Oishi's room and Eiji surprised him by saying he had to go home. It was getting late and they had practice early in the morning. He would finish his work at home and call Oishi if he had any questions. Eiji said it quietly but knew in the nearly silent household it echoed, everyone heard. Even with the door open he brushed Oishi's lips with his own and whispered so softly in his ear, "Hoi Oishi. Its going to be all right. Fujiko said so too. Its going to be all right. I'll call you later. But I'm leaving my bike here, okay?"

Oishi knew that the bike was just that Eiji wanted to leave something of his behind. "Sure." Oishi smiled and whispered very quietly, "You're all right walking, you don't want my parents to drive you?" Eiji nodded yes to his first question and shook his head emphatically no with wide eyes in horror to his second. Oishi could not help smiling, "Fuji said it would be all right?" He whispered to Eiji brushing his lips across Eiji's sensuous mouth softly and with regret at there not being more time for anything more before leading him down the stairs. Eiji nodded at his question. He wanted to go with Eiji. He wanted that or Eiji to stay. Oishi wanted to believe it was going to be all right because he felt quite the opposite was true.

"Thanks, for all your help Eiji." Oishi wanted to say more. Much, much more but couldn't.

Eiji saw, knew, understood, and then smiled. "Thank you, and please thank your parents again for dinner, Oishi-senpai." Oishi's jaw dropped. Eiji had never called him that before and it felt like Eiji was a million miles away. Eiji gave him a big grin and a wink making his fingers into a V for victory. Oishi looked sadly at him, not understanding. He closed the door even though he felt like running after Eiji and running away. He went back upstairs starting back on his school work and waited anxiously for Eiji to call him.

On to Chapter 18!!