Learning to Fall. 
by Suteishichic

Chapter Twenty Three ~ Fuji

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

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

Fuji Syusuke was annoyed when he woke up. He had fallen asleep straining to listen to his friends. He was expecting there to be at least some loud moaning and yelling. Perhaps even a few screams and instead heard only a few soft noises which could have been light moans, laughter, or even only talking. Although they weren't his usual fantasy, he had come very nicely the night before, thinking of being in the middle of his two virgin friends on what he guessed was supposed to be their first night making love.

They both had beautiful, cut bodies, strong hands, and soft mouths, so it was a nice fantasy. Oishi, Fuji was sure, had experience with girls but this would be all new to him. Eiji, while eager for affection and attention was new to everything, and would glut himself on pleasure as he did with everything he enjoyed. They would be very curious, very eager, and very willing. Even now the fantasy gave Fuji a little thrill as he thought about it. It was better than the frustration he was dealing with in his own love life or, lack of love life he thought to himself wryly.

He woke up at his normal time and went to Yuuta's room, enjoying the irony of his friends consummating their new relationship there. He might just tell his brother to torture him one day. The door was open. The window was open a crack, the room looked clean, the bed made, and in fact the bed looked unused. He even checked under the blanket and there was no sign of anything on the sheets. Maybe they used the futon? The floor? He checked the trash, nothing. He went down the hall to the bathroom. The room was clean. It was only the drying water that let him know the shower had been even used a while ago.

Fuji turned on the water, removed his robe, and stepped into the still cold spray letting it sting his skin. He could not understand it. Fuji ran his hair under the water, smiling and wondering when the last time he showered here in the morning before school was. He wondered idly if he would be missed. He suspected so.

He turned his thoughts back to his two friends and what could have gone wrong. Eiji had called him crying the day his leg was hurt at practice with Oishi. He would not tell Fuji what was wrong or what had happened. Fuji had hoped that Eiji would connect as a friend with gentle, reserved Oishi, he was not sure. Fuji had dated both men and women preferring to fall for the person rather than the gender. He did sincerely like his friend Eiji, and once or twice, had thought about taking him for a lover.

Fuji was very selective in his potential lovers. He liked not just Eiji's beautiful, naturally sculpted, agile body, but he also found, once he peeled back the layers of silliness and jokes the guy wore like armor, inside was a very sensitive, very loving, sweet soul with a quick, intuitive, nimble mind. Fuji knew immediately to let Eiji go. When Eiji did fall in love, whoever he fell in love with, he would love them completely and consumingly. He would need to be loved and adored constantly. It was much too much for Fuji to casually play with.

Fuji also liked Oishi. Oishi was calm, dedicated, and though he probably did not realize it himself, Oishi was eager for affection. He yearned to be loved. Fuji had heard the rumors of Oishi's love life with a long string of littered broken hearts. At first he thought Oishi was perhaps cruel but then to his surprise, Fuji found Oishi sincerely did not know why these girls kept falling in love with him. He didn't feel worthy of love and at the same time he burned with a need for it. So of course the girls he attracted were mostly needy girls. Needy of his time, his attention, and his affection which Oishi could only give if he ever received boundless supplies first. He couldn't give what he didn't have.

Knowing Eiji's need for attention and Oishi's need for affection Fuji thought only that the two of them could be good friends. So, Fuji, sort of, set them up, letting Eiji know how much he liked Oishi, and vice versa. Then Fuji backed off and let whatever would be, be. He was pleased that his friends asked him to the movie for their three couple date. He saw a few side glances from Eiji to Oishi and Oishi to Eiji and decided to play with Oishi in case his date turned out to be boring.

Oishi seemed to be upset by this. Fuji assumed it was his attentions upsetting Oishi and let him be. Fuji was so distracted by his own confusing love life that he thought nothing of the girls and guys kissing in the theater. Instead, Fuji distracted himself even more completely with Eve.

The girl was pretty, cocky, flirty, outrageously overt in her sexuality, and then told Fuji that he wasn't her type. How could Fuji resist a challenge like that? Especially when Fuji arrived in a playful mood and was wishing for a new toy just at that very moment. He was discouraged by his love life and wanted a distraction. He used a few simple speed seduction phrases, a light dose of NLP, really, barely anything, and told the girl when she was no longer sure what her type was anymore, that all he wanted was a kiss. One kiss.

The cocky girl said as if they were playing blackjack, "Hit me." Fuji adored her response and kissed her. Making her swoon. Making her want him. Making her his. She was fast and lusty, she moved his hand up her inner thigh as they kissed, and smiled when he experimentally ran his hand further up her short skirt and grazed her clit lightly with his finger. A very nice diversion indeed.

But, she wasn't who he wanted. She would not replace or erase who he wanted, what he wanted from his mind. Her sweet strawberry lip gloss taste suddenly made his stomach turn. He excused himself and went to the men's room with a sudden urge to wash his hands, his mouth, to shower. A pang of missing someone else overwhelming him. Eiji was there and seemed upset but would not say why. He didn't even respond when Fuji joked around with him. As if on cue when Eiji left a moment later, Oishi shows up and also is upset. Fuji jokes around with Oishi and again he also doesn't really respond.

Then Fuji noticed after that Oishi would not look at Eiji, and Eiji looked upset when he looked at Oishi. And Eiji looked at Oishi a lot. Something had happened but no matter how much Fuji tried to get Eiji to say any details, their entire walk home, he will not. Eiji is suddenly unable to talk about something. Fuji was intrigued.

Fuji was really surprised then on Monday when Eiji called him devastated after being hurt. He asked Fuji to come right over after practice and to ask Oishi to bring him his homework, but Eiji needed to talk to Fuji before seeing Oishi. Fuji left immediately after practice taking the bus straight to Eiji's, to find him needing to cry, be held, and to talk.

The hurt was not his leg. It was his heart. Eiji never said exactly what had happened, he outright refused in fact, but it did not take a tensai to figure it out. Fuji had learned that to teach or let Eiji work through a problem or situation, the best thing to do was to give Eiji a hypothetical situation. Once Eiji was able to remove his mercurial emotions and get some distance from the situation, Fuji was truly impressed at how his quick mind would leap through the problem and come up with a solution. This worked in real life situations, geometry proofs, philosophy proofs, whatever it was, if you give Eiji a way he can look at it from a distance without emotions, he would find an answer.

Eiji was even able to solve some university level philosophy proofs Fuji had struggled weeks over within a few moments. Even more surprisingly, he was able to do it succinctly and originally, coming up with answers and solutions Fuji had not even considered. Fuji had even written to a favorite professor he corresponded with, forwarding the theorem proofs to him. Even his friend was floored, wanting to know who the genius Fuji was talking with was. Fuji smiled thinking of Eiji's face, if he knew someone brilliant, ne, anyone was calling him a genius, and not kidding, not even a little.

So Fuji gave a distraught Eiji a hypothetical. Two good friends who spent a lot of time together, had a lot of things in common with each other, liked each other, even cared for each other, and even maybe touched each other. One was embarrassed or ashamed or afraid and withdrew, the other was hurt. What should the hurt one do? It was Eiji entirely who solved his own proof and decided to withdraw as well insisting Oishi stay away. He had the opportunity as he was healing to be out of school. He would not see Oishi until he earned it.

Fuji even tried to talk Eiji out of this, tried to convince him that Fuji sincerely, surely, believed that Oishi was straight. He may have experimented with Eiji and may have had feelings for him, but that is a long way away from someone wanting to be your boyfriend. Eiji, no matter what hypothetical Fuji gave him to try to dissuade him, believed in Oishi and in his heart.

Fuji watched Oishi closely as Eiji had asked him to all week. Oishi was devastated. His playing was terrible. He felt guilt and worry about hurting Eiji and that was keeping him from dealing with his own sense of loss and hurt. Missing Eiji. Lost without his friend. But it was more than than. More than guilt. More than wanting to be friends with Eiji again. Fuji saw Oishi missed him in his heart.

It was Eiji who knew it all along. Fuji had gone to Eiji's every night bringing his homework and letting him cry or talk or just vent. Finally seeing the pet shop pictures on Thursday, Fuji asked Eiji what could he do to help. Eiji believed in Oishi. Even telling Fuji that if Fuji wanted he could challenge Oishi to a game, and it was Eiji who told the tensai with total trust that Oishi would beat Fuji to see him if he believed there was no other way.

Fuji was surprised, and then incredulous as it happened exactly as Eiji said. Fuji would have also thought Eiji would cave sooner, allowed Oishi to see him, cried to him, demanded that Oishi talk to him. But Eiji had held firm even in the wake of the thoughtful gifts Oishi brought him. Surprising gifts of sentiment and even romance, that shy and reserved Oishi gave without a second thought. Eiji held firm, even after listening over and over to Oishi's many phone messages begging Eiji to talk to him.

Fuji watching realized, he did not think even he had Eiji's resolve when Eiji really wanted something. And Eiji really wanted Oishi. He really wanted his heart. In exchange Eiji would give him no less than his own. Fuji watched in awe as his two friends danced around each other and towards one another at the same time, the unlikeliest of matches. Fuji would never have bet on it, and yet here they were.

Or were they? Fuji had no idea what had gone wrong. Eiji had again called Fuji crying, even more seriously now, that Oishi was about to be sent away to another school. Eiji told Fuji flatly that night, right after it happened, that he would go with Oishi if he was sent away, wherever it was. Fuji was stunned. He asked Eiji if Oishi knew he felt this way but all Eiji said through tears was it was too soon. He didn't want to scare Oishi away. Fuji then asked if Eiji had any indication that Oishi felt the same. Some was all Eiji had said, just like always. Never admitting and never denying. Just believing in Oishi, and in them with his entire heart.

So Fuji calmed Eiji down on the phone, at Oishi's. He volunteered to help his friends. He gave Eiji a hypothetical of the situation and then the two of them came up with a plan.

But it was Fuji who thought Eiji should spend the night with Oishi at Fuji's. It was Fuji who told Eiji what to buy just in case. Fuji did not want either of them to get hurt and it seemed a simple solution all around. Fuji told Eiji to ask any questions he might have about what might happen between two men. He expected Eiji's questions to be naive and innocent, silly ones more about placements, or who went where and did what, and terms. Instead they were direct, to the point, and yet, vague.

Fuji had no idea who would be the seme or who would be the uke. None. At first he assumed Oishi was top and then it sounded like it could be Eiji. In a moment of sheer frustration Fuji just outright asked Eiji. Eiji laughed. Laughed! And said, it doesn't matter. He didn't even care! Fuji who had been dancing around another always in control man for months now almost poured his heart out then to...Eiji!

Fuji realized then that Eiji loved Oishi with all his heart. He trusted him completely. Fuji had by then seen the two of them together and knew, even if Oishi had not realized it yet, Eiji's feelings were absolutely returned. They were in love with each other. Deeply. And this was not a crush or a fling, or two guys experimenting. They loved the essence of the other. They fit.

In so short an amount of time, the two had linked their hearts without any apparent reservations, while Fuji and his would-be love were still dancing around each other wrestling for control and dominance. Fuji, simply said, was jealous. Oh it wasn't that Fuji wanted Oishi for himself or Eiji, it was just that while watching, Eiji had simply given his heart and taken Oishi's. Oishi was a guy who had huge control issues, and while he had a big heart, Fuji often wondered at whether the guy would ever be able to let go and relax, let alone love. Especially seeing how he grew up. Yet Eiji had walked in and slowly, lovingly, wrapped him around his little finger with a gentle loving touch. And Oishi adored him for it--even if he did not fully realize it himself, Oishi loved him.

And Oishi, when not stressed out by his father recently, was better as a person for Eiji's love. He was more secure in himself. He smiled easier. He reached out to Fuji in friendship when he had not before. Fuji suspected Eiji had probably told Oishi about their one disastrous kiss, that one night when Fuji was having an unusual bout of weakness and ended up feeling Eiji out. Fuji was only looking for a little attention and affection and discovered Eiji burned too brightly for Fuji to taste. To Fuji's surprise, Oishi had not shown one iota of jealousy towards the tensai. Instead, he protected him, befriended him, and allowed himself to be helped. Incredible.

Eiji with Oishi, Fuji noted was calmer too. He smiled more if that was possible. He looked to be more complete as a person as well. He played better. He was more confident. His jokes were not as biting or as sarcastic. He seemed more at ease within himself. Happier. More balanced. Extraordinary.

So Fuji had guessed that last night was the night the two virgins were supposed to give themselves to each other in some, as yet undefined, who was on top, way. But it appeared that had not even happened. Fuji hoped everything was all right. He hoped Oishi had not freaked out or that Eiji had not spooked him. He hoped that Eiji had not gotten upset or defensive or that they decided to break up both their relationship and their friendship. Or that no one was hurt. Or that this love between two guys was not too much, too fast, for serious, reserved, Oishi. Fuji hoped they could work whatever was wrong out, because as unbelievable as the paring was, they really did work well together. They just...fit.

Fuji finished his shower. Dried off and went to his room to dress. He grabbed his things for school, and with a determined sigh, and a smile as always on his face he went to put whatever happened to go so wrong, right again with his friends.

He went downstairs to find his friends...having breakfast. Eiji had cooked a huge pile of food and was feeding Oishi something with his fork. Eiji blew it cool before putting it slowly in Oishi's mouth. Oishi closed his eyes, he moaned enjoying the food, and Eiji was kissing Oishi on his lips, licking powdered sugar off them. It was incredibly loving, and incredibly sexy. Fuji put that one in his fantasy file for another day, while he waited until their kiss ended before making any noise. The tensai had long ago learned how to walk silently through his own home.

"Fujiko!" Oishi turned beet red while Eiji jumped up to hug Fuji. "Good morning! Sit! Eat!"

"Good morning Eiji, Oishi, did you sleep well?"

"Good morning, Fuji-senpai, yes, we did thank you." Oishi said blushing, Fuji and Eiji laughed at how red in the face Oishi was.

Eiji covered Oishi's face with a dishtowel saying, "Hoi. Come out whenever you're done, Oishi." Even Oishi had to laugh. He spun the towel and made to whip Eiji's bottom with the crack of the towel, missing it on purpose by a meter.

Eiji gave a little squeak trying to get away and get Fuji's food on a plate. Fuji was laughing at their antics. "What are we having?" Fuji asked.

"Hoi! French toast." Fuji smiled as Eiji handed him a plate laden with one of Fuji's favorite western breakfasts, provided it was spiced properly.

"Hoi, Oishi pass Fuji the hot garlic jelly, please?" Eiji turned back to his own food.

"Hot...garlic...jelly?" Oishi said reading the label and looking. "Is it...good?"

"Wonderful." Fuji said smiling as Oishi went to open the jar and try it.

"Nya Oishi!" Eiji intercepted him, taking it from him, and shuddering, "You do not want to try that." He looked disgusted thinking about it.

"That bad?" Oishi asked curious.

"Nya! Worse!"

Fuji shrugged. Everyone laughed. Fuji watched his friends closely as they ate. If anything, they seemed closer than before. It was the little things, the little gestures, the little smiles, the little touches, the looks. Fuji again felt a touch jealous but enjoyed seeing his friends so happy, even if he had no idea what happened.

"Fuji-senpai, thank you again for last night, and the use of your brother's room. So, what do I tell my father when he asks?"

Fuji told Oishi all about Saint Rudolph's while they ate. He made certain to tell Oishi to say certain phrases to his father and had Oishi repeat the list of 9 things seven times.

"Why?" Oishi asked.

"It takes the human brain 6 tries to memorize anything on average. The seventh is for luck. You will say those 9 phrases which will trigger negative memories I said to him while we were talking. If you have a chance to repeat any of the 9 phrases you can but you must say all 9. If your father again wants to talk to me again, which I believe he will, I will also re-enforce those negative phrases. Then all you have to do is make it as a regular."

Oishi and Eiji looked at each other and nodded. Then turned back to Fuji.

"What?" Fuji said smiling innocently, "Its just basic NLP."


"Nothing..." They said at the same time.

Then they all laughed.

"Ne, you two might also want to put some," Fuji looked for the right word, "distance, between the two of you at school, and, well, in the tennis club room. Particularly the shower area? At least until rankings are over?"

Oishi blushed furiously again and Eiji said "Hoi. We...know."

"Mn. If its all right, I'll stay around Oishi," Fuji said this to Eiji and then looked at Oishi, "warm up with you and wait for you if I finish early."

"When you finish early." Oishi, still blushing, smiled.

Fuji inclined his head slightly at the complement. "Mn. That will also help me. Those two will be even angrier today and most likely at both of us." Fuji turned back to Eiji, "Ne, Eiji, I don't want you to get caught in the middle or try to diffuse the situation. If you can, warm up with Tezuka or Kawamura and stay close to either of them. In fact, watch either of their block's games, unless you have somewhere else to go today?"


"Ne, Eiji. We'll be fine. Right, Oishi?"

Something about Eiji being distressed made Oishi overcome his normal shyness or embarrassment at showing affection openly to Eiji in front of Fuji. Fuji watched fascinated and surprised, as shy Oishi said softly, "Its okay, love." Then he took Eiji's face in his hand and kissed him gently, lovingly, and comfortably, as if they had done it a million times already. Their kiss deepened as Eiji leaned into him. It was beautiful to watch.

Oishi ended the kiss and put his forehead on Eiji's with their arms wrapped around each other. The two looked into each others eyes and talked very quietly in one word sentences. Ne, Fuji thought smiling, getting up to clear his plate, and taking their dirty ones too, it was just oh so sweet it needed hot garlic jelly to take.

Fuji thought he was going to have a hard time prying the two away from each other but instead they both were up, helping him with the dishes. Oishi helping and Eiji, well directing actually, and then they all headed for the door. Eiji gave Oishi one more kiss, which Oishi returned like they would never see each other again, before Fuji finally was able to open the door. Fuji rolled his eyes and smiled.

They caught a bus to school, Fuji enjoying being around two people who were so obviously smitten with each other. Fuji found his jealousy turned into a welcome warm camaraderie that he had rarely experienced with others before. His friends warmth and affection towards each other spilled over onto everyone around them. Especially now that they could not touch each other it was comfortable being around them. Fuji sat in between them at the back of the bus and they talked and laughed about tennis and sports and things that only other guys would find interesting.

On to Chapter 24!!