Although it had only been a few days, the living room of his older brother's apartment has already become like home for Tatsuha. He had set up his computer over in one of the corners just a day ago, knowing that it'd be better off. Sure, it was fun to see Eiri irked at him at times, but in all reality, that seemed like the only way Tatsuha could get even a small conversation out of the blonde.
His gaze drifted over to his laptop from across the room, seeing the download window up as it covered a small portion of the screen. The teen figured that, hey, he might as well let it sit, and not interfere by using any other programs.
That being set, Tatsuha leaned back against the couch. He was seated on the floor in front of the furniture, his legs crossed at the ankles and stretched out in front of him. His eyes were closed, and upon his head were a well-worn pair of headphones.
Eiri had been closeted in his office for upwards of twelve hours now. He might have slept at some point, but he wasn't sure. The new medication had some disturbing side effects that he wasn't entirely happy with--like going through significant portions of his day without remembering what he'd done. He'd skipped his evening dose, though, and felt more lucid now. Lucid enough, in fact, to emerge from his personal cloister and have a cup of coffee. He brewed the stuff and brought it into the living room, briefly startled by his brother's presence before he remembered why Tatsuha was there.
Cracking open one eye to check the download again, for probably the fifth time in the past thirty minutes, Tatsuha noticed Eiri was in the room. He had to admit, it was almost strange to see him. ..or, at least that day it was. "Wow," he murmured, reaching up to pull one of the speakers off his ear.
Eiri glanced at his brother before sitting down. "What?"
Tatsuha shrugged. "Just am surprised to see you. Thought you would fall asleep in there or something."
Eiri took a sip of coffee and shrugged. He didn't really want to admit that he wasn't entirely sure that he hadn't. "I've got deadlines to meet. That's all."
Reaching up again, Tatsuha pulled the headphones off completely, letting them hang around his neck. "Do..you always have such tight deadlines? I mean..jeeze.." He paused a moment to turn off the MP3 player. "It seems like all you ever do is write. ..or maybe just try to write.." another shrug was given.
The elder brother contemplated his coffee cup, then shrugged in his own right. "It'd be easier if I didn't wait until the last minute. Doesn't stop me, though."
"Cause you've gotta make a living somehow, am I right?" He closed his eyes again, not wanting the day to pass, just because it meant that it would be one day less that Eiri would let him stay.
Eiri sniffed slightly, feeling oddly candid. "Not really. I suppose I could stop, considering what I've got now, and the royalties. Of course I'd have to kick the car-wrecking habit."
"Heh.." Tatsuha smiled a bit at that. "Then why don't you? Last time it ever seemed like you actually enjoyed writing was years ago."
Eiri shifted slightly, uncomfortably, giving his brother an odd sideways glance. ...That's strange. I didn't think he remembered that. "I enjoy writing," he countered, though not with much passion.
The teen glanced up to Eiri for a moment before pulling his legs up closer to his body, crossing them. "It sure doesn't sound like you do."
He shrugged and took a sip of coffee. "I don't suppose it really matters any more. It's what I do."
"Yeah, it is." Tatsuha murmured, almost a thought out loud. "Though, I would think that for a job, a person should really enjoy what they do." Getting up, he slid the MP3 player into his pocket and went into the kitchen. He had gone out the other day to get a few more things to eat for himself, given Eiri had nothing. Grabbing a Coke from the fridge, he went back and sat down, this time on the couch. "I'm sure you don't write for no reason at all.."
Eiri seemed genuinely nonplussed at the direction of the conversation. "It's something to do, isn't it?"
Tatsuha sighed and leaned back into the couch. His eyes drifted over to the small laptop for a moment, checking the percentage, only to see it wasn't even at 50 yet. "Yeah, I guess." He wasn't going to argue with Eiri because he already knew his brother wouldn't say anything.
The writer frowned a bit. There was something on Tatsuha's mind, and he knew it. We used to talk, when we were younger. I'm sure we did. ...Didn't we? It was so hard to remember that far back. Frowning, Eiri sipped at his coffee, for once not feeling inclined either to smoke or drink. The silence bothered him somewhat, though he couldn't tell why. "...What are you downloading?" he asked, more to make conversation than anything else.
"The Nittle Grasper concert you told me about, that I missed." A smile cracked at the teen's features, but Tatsuha obviously didn't glee like Eiri probably expected, even though he was excited for it to finish. "Shuichi said he has it on tape though. He's letting me borrow it." He smiled a bit more then, but didn't go on, taking a drink instead.
"He'll be here tomorrow," Eiri offered. "Sometime in the afternoon."
"Mhm!" Tatsuha nodded and grinned a bit. "So I've read. He seems happy to see me again." Unlike you.. the teen frowned a bit, though it was only mentally.
"He's terminally happy." Eiri was a bit nervous about the bouncing ball of pink-haired energy coming back after so many weeks, though he couldn't tell why. It would be just like before, wouldn't it? And he hadn't minded that.
Tatsuha just chuckled a bit and shook his head. Sure, he didn't get to talk to the singer often, but he could tell that Shuichi truly loved Eiri, no holding back.
Eiri glanced at his brother, wondering what the kid had been thinking of the writer's extended absence. He glanced at the clock, then started, shocked at how late it was. "...Did you eat dinner?"
Tatsuha shrugged a bit and raised the can. "Not dinner exactly, but I had a poptart and soda and..that's it I think.." He had bought some things when he was in town, but nothing really equivelant to what one would eat for dinner, exactly.
Eiri stood up, placing the coffee cup on the table. "Let's order something. I can't remember when I last ate." It was odd to think of something like that. He hadn't actually felt hungry since he started the new medication, but he was sure his body wouldn't mind some nutrition. Good thing Tatsuha's presence had reminded him. Then again, Tohma would probably get on my case sooner or later. Oh, well. One way or another, I suppose I have to eat. Might as well make him eat too.
"...?" At first Tatsuha just looked at his brother as if there was some alien presence standing there, instead of the author, but then he just smiled. "Okay. ..What are you in the mood for?" His mood changes with every day that I know him...
"Whatever you want," Eiri offered, standing up. "There's a stack of menus in the drawer next to the fridge. I'll be right back." He headed towards the bathroom.
Nodding, Tatsuha rose to his feet and headed to the kitchen. Like Eiri had said, there was the stack of menus. ..and shit, there were a ton! Why the heck do you have all of these if you barely eat..? he mused. Flipping through the pile, Tatsuha finally came to a decision between the local Italian place, and this oldfashioned American deli type cafe. At least that's what it looks like, he studied the menu a bit more, but couldn't read much of it at all. "Italian it is, then~" At least that menu was in Japanese, for the most part.
Eiri stared at himself in the bathroom mirror. Do I really look like that? Damn. He splashed some water on his face and grabbed a towel to dry off. Heading back into the living room, he saw Tatsuha with the menu. "Hnh. Good choice."
Tatsuha was leaning against the wall by the couch, his gaze focused upon the menu, until Eiri came back in. "Anything you'd reccomend?" He asked, though he probably didn't need to.
"The pollo sorpresa is good there, but I'd steer clear of the seafood." His accent changed minutely when he spoke the Italian terms, sounding more like an American speaking in Italian than a Japanese man.
Not like Tatsuha really knew what that dish was, but he'd take Eiri's word for it. Giving another nod, he looked back to the menu. "Na, aniki.."
"Mmm hmm?" Eiri was lighting a cigarette.
"Ever think you could teach me some English some time..?" Tatsuha smiled a bit, partially hopeful that his brother would actually say yes.
Eiri started, almost dropping his cigarette. He recovered quickly, but frowned a bit. It took a lungful of smoke to calm him enough to answer. "...What do you want to speak English for?"
"Because..I want to...?" Tatsuha let out a sigh and shook his head a little. "Nevermind," he mumbled. It was an expected answer from Eiri, so why was he so disappointed..? "I probably would learn better from you, anyways. Opposed to the school system." He shrugged. Plus Sakuma-sama speaks it~ I could have conversations with him and everything~~~ <333
Eiri was not fond of the English language. He never spoke it if he could avoid it, and in fact went to great lengths to stay away from any mention of it or its home countries. He didn't want to speak it. Hell, he didn't want to hear it. He... "Perhaps when I finish this next chapter. I should be less busy after that." ...he had just agreed to teach it to his little brother. What the hell am I getting myself into?
Tatsuha blinked. "Eh..? Really?" His expression was a one of surprise at first, but then the teen grinned widely, nearly beaming. "Thanks!!" Of course, Tatsuha wasn't excpecting to get full-out lessons and everything, but he wouldn't mind learning even a little bit.
"Mmmnh. Just don't run me ragged." To tell the truth, Eiri was a bit uncertain of his own abilities, but he figured that considering their relative levels of fluency, Tatsuha wouldn't even notice.
Tatsuha laughed a bit. "Saa.. don't worry, aniki, I don't expect to be a walking American dictionary or whatever." The teen replied back with a smile still on his face. Sure, he didn't really speak of it, but Tatsuha cared deeply about his brother, it's not like the boy was going to run him up a creek. Even though I probably do at times...
Eiri grunted and changed the subject. "Did you decide what you wanted?"
Tatsuha nodded and studied the menu for a moment again. "The..chicken fe..fettucini.." His nose wrinkled up slightly, almost in frustration as he attempted to pronounce the word.
"Fettucini," Eiri corrected absently, still with the American accent that he himself did not notice. "I'll order." He picked up the phone and dialed the restaurant from memory. He greeted the person on the other line in Japanese, but switched to Italian to order. When finished, he hung up the phone and set it on the coffee table as he moved to sit on the couch.
Tatsuha listened with silent amazement. How many languages does he know? After that was done, the teen went back to the table and grabbed his Coke can, drinking the last bit of it. After setting it in the kitchen, he made his way to the other part of the room, checking on the download.
Of course, the Italian was simple and American-accented, but Eiri had picked it up on his European book tour. He lit another cigarette and sucked in smoke, enjoying it thoroughly.
Ahh..finally, it was past the 50% mark. Pleased with how the internet connection was doing a bit better, as well as the download, Tatsuha made his way back to the couch and slumped down on it. "Ever think of how that could affect Shuichi's career?" He asked casually, glancing to Eiri and the cigarette.
Eiri looked genuinely startled. "...What?" It was obvious that he had no idea what his brother was talking about.
"The smoking. It could be damaging to him, his throat."
He looked at the cigarette as if he'd never seen one before. For a moment, he hesitated, seeming to consider putting it out, but then he shrugged. "Hasn't hurt him yet." When he put it back in his mouth, though, it was with slightly less enthusiasm than before. Eiri had been a chain smoker for a solid three and a half years, ever since he left the psychiatric ward. He couldn't stop now. Could he?
"Just saying." He murmured and shrugged a little. Why can't he just talk to me? Like we used to..? With a barely-audible sigh, Tatsuha got up again and went to sit by his bag. He rummaged through it for a few moments before pulling out a magazine that had all the latest music news. He had read it twice already, but he figured it'd be more entertaining than trying to talk with his older brother.
The silence lengthened. Eiri felt uncomfortable, but he couldn't quite tell why. At length, he stubbed out the barely-smoked cigarette in the ash tray on the coffee table. He scowled at the butt, as if it had personally offended him. Luckily, further awkwardness was avoided when the doorbell rang. Eiri stood with relief and went to fetch his wallet.
He glanced up briefly when the food had come, but then looked back to the article he had missed. It was tiny, but it gave Tatsuha something new to read.
Uncharacteristically domestic, Eiri actually took the time to dig up some plates (how long had it been since he'd used them...?) and ladling the food into a more civilized form than the styrofoam containers it came in. "More soda?" he called to his brother.
"Sure," Tatsuha replied and set the magazine down. Getting to his feet again, he made his way to the kitchen. He almost was startled at the sight. He couldn't remember the last time he had eaten with Eiri, and to see the plates being taken out, well..it just made Tatsuha genuinely happy.
Eiri had forks out, but he was frowning. "You know," he remarked, "I don't even remember where I keep the glasses." He opened one empty cupboard after another until he finally tracked them down.
Again came the surprised look, and Tatsuha just smiled to himself. Whether Eiri was doing this just to be curteous to the teen's presence - which Tatsuha doubted - or actually trying, Tatsuha didn't really mind. It was nice.
Finally managing to acquire two complete table settings, Eiri handed Tatsuha a plate, glass, and fork combo and took his own towards the coffee table. He didn't have a dining table; he'd never needed one before. Eiri knew he was far from being the greatest host, and he wasn't the greatest brother, either. But he was trying. That had to count for something, right?
Tatsuha took the set and followed Eiri back into the living room. "Thank you," he said sincerely, looking up to his brother after having sat down. It wasn't exactly something to be heard from Tatsuha often, but he was thankful for what Eiri was putting up with, for him.
Eiri glanced at his brother, then back at the food. "Mnh," was his only reply, but in the silence a sort of bond seemed to grow, as if a connection between siblings that had been dropped long ago was just barely beginning to strengthen.
As he dug into the food, Tatsuha hid a bit of a smile. Maybe things really would work out. Then again, maybe they wouldn't. But as long as he could attempt to get closer with Eiri, like they used to be, the teen wasn't going to give up. When it all came down to things, he would much rather be close with Eiri, and not Mika or their father.
The writer ate quietly and neatly, a product of his oddly fastidious nature--odd, of course, considering the lack of care he usually showed towards such protocols as tableware. When he'd finished, he stacked the dishes in preparation for washing. As oddly relaxing as this night had been, he needed to get back to work--his shrink would be awaiting him at nine AM, and Eiri had things to get done before he left. It might be another all-nigher. He hoped not. Standing, he picked up his dishes. "I should probably get back to work."
Tatsuha finished soon after. "Yeah, okay." he nodded a little. It was expected, of course, that Eiri would go and work. Standing up, he gathered his own dishes and brought them into the kitchen. "I..can take care of the dishes." Tatsuha offered, knowing it'd probably surprise the author. He just wanted to try and prove to his brother, though. He wanted to show that he really wasn't as rambunctious as Eiri probably thought him to be, despite his wild habits that usually shone through. "Just try and sleep a little, at least. Okay?" He glanced back to Eiri as he spoke.
Eiri blinked. He certainly was surprised. When he'd allowed Tatsuha to stay, he'd honestly expected that the teen would spend half his time drooling over Ryuichi and the other half out on the town, but none of that had happened. He looked at his brother in a slightly new light. Well, it's true that we haven't exactly seen each other in a while. I suppose it makes sense that the image Father and Mika present of him isn't exactly what he is. "...Yeah. I'll try," he promised.
"Thanks," he smiled. It wasn't unexpected of course, seeing the faint change of expression upon Eiri's face when Tatsuha had spoken again. As for the rest of his own night, the teen planed to toy around with that new journal of his, maybe see what else was on the thing. He wanted to go out more, but with little money, it wasn't always the most entertaining thing. But hey, he tried.
With a last glance at Tatsuha (it felt odd to have someone else doing the dishes, especially his little brother), Eiri headed to the office. The sounds of clinking dishes and running water seemed out of place at first, but in all honesty, Eiri found them somewhat comforting. Settling into his chair, he got ready to write.