[identity profile] stormymood.livejournal.com posting in [community profile] arashi_exchange
A piece of rainbow for  [livejournal.com profile] phrenk Part 3



9


Jun wakes up alone. If it’s not for the messy state that he’s in, he would have thought that he was just dreaming. Nino has left when Jun was still asleep and he left no traces at all. There’s no notes or anything. He has taken his phone from Jun’s bag too and it’s the right one this time.

Jun sighs happily remembering the night before. He has never dreamed of being able to hold Nino in that way again. Now that he did, it confirms that he couldn’t—and shouldn’t—let Nino go from his life again. He still loves Nino, even after all this time, and Nino is worth to fight for, even if it means that he has to overcome his mistakes from the past.

Jun takes his phone from his bag and unlocks it, failing twice before succeeding because he’s too used with inputting Nino’s passcode. He gets a message from Sho with a photo of a certain payphone stall attached and even though the photo is dark, he could figure out who are the two guys kissing inside the stall. The posters didn’t do a great job in hiding what’s insight, after all.

Jun laughs and checks for any messages from Nino, which is none. He wonders at what time Nino boarded the plane, or if he has boarded at all. Jun tries his luck by calling Nino’s number—feeling funny that he no longer has to dial in his own number—and finds that it’s unreachable. Jun takes it as a sign that Nino is still on his way, so he decides to get up and take a shower, trying to clear his head up since he’s about to make a big decision that he couldn’t mess up.

After he finishes his shower, Jun fixes himself a sandwich for breakfast and turns the TV on. He checks his schedule and receives a call from Tackey that tells him that he’s going to pick him up in an hour. Jun then asks Tackey if he could have a day free this weekend and practically begs for it, and Tackey says that he would try if he could do something to free up his schedule for a day.

Jun smiles contently. A day is all he needs. He’d fly to Osaka, find Nino, and finally do the right thing, which is coming clean to Nino and asking him to be a part of his life again. He knows that there’s a probability that Nino will get mad at him after he’s telling the truth, but it’s still worth the shot. He might come home happy or heartbroken, but there will be no more regret clinging to his heart.

When Tackey arrives, he comes with the news that he managed to free up Sunday for Jun. He throws a questioning look and Jun answers it shortly with Nino’s name, trusting that Tackey will understand the situation. Tackey only nods to that and they go to Jun’s first location of the day. Jun is lucky that he’s going solo in this one, which means that he is saved from Toma’s and Sho’s endless teasing that he knows he’s about to receive.

While he’s getting his hair done, Jun tries to call Nino again. The number still can not be reached and Jun furrows his forehead, finding it strange. Even if Nino just gets on the plane when he first tried to call him, he would have been arrived by now. Jun checks his watch again and does the calculation in his head, making sure that his initial calculation is right. It is right, and Jun couldn’t help but having a huge question mark in his head, but he brushes it off by thinking that Nino might be going straight to work and ran out of battery. He was on a business trip, after all, there must be a lot of things that he has to do the moment he arrives at work.

Still, Jun leaves a message for Nino so Nino would message him back once his phone is on.

Matsumoto: Nino, have you arrived?
Matsumoto: Let me know when I can call you. [smiling emoji]

Jun puts his phone down and smiles, knowing that he’ll feel better by doing so. He tries to focus on his job after that, but he still finds himself checking the clock every now and then, making Tackey ask if he’s waiting for something. Jun says no to that and Tackey warns him to focus before he gets another complaint from the photographer like the last time. Jun slaps himself internally upon that, hating himself for failing in being professional two times in a row.

The job is done within two hours and Jun immediately rushes to check his phone after he greets everyone. There’s still no message from Nino. The number is still unreachable and Jun can not dismiss the bad feeling that is creeping up his spine now. His brain starts to make scenarios of what is happening. His mind wanders to the thought that he already had before, but has been pushed away after they spent the night together.

What if Nino doesn’t want to talk to him anymore? What if the end of their swapped phones case also marks the end of their communication? What if everything that happened between them in the last few days is just a one-time thing—a stunt that Nino pulls because the situation is fitting to just do so? What if it’s just another way of having fun for Nino? What if it doesn’t mean more than a silly act, if it means anything at all?

Jun has been prepared for this, to be honest. He has accepted that there’s a possibility that Nino wouldn’t want to have anything to do with him anymore after everything is resolved, since their only reason to keep in contact would disappear after that. He has braced himself for that. Actually, that’s the only scenario that he had in mind until last night.

But then, things happened between them. Jun wants to believe that something between them has sparked last night—that they still have a connection, a desire to be together. He believes that every touch and every kiss mean something, something that is definitely not Nino intending to leave him completely without words.

Failing to calm himself down, Jun calls Aiba, the next best way he knows in reaching for Nino.

“Yes?” Aiba answers. Clattering voices are in the background, showing that probably Aiba is working in his restaurant right now.

“Aiba,” Jun breathes out, getting a little bit calmer because at least Aiba is picking up. “Has Nino arrived?” he asks.

“Oh, yes. He has, he has,” Aiba answers, a bit distracted. “He texted me earlier. He’s having a day off, he said.”

“He texted you?” Jun asks, starting to feel really bad about this.

“Yeah, he sent me a message through LINE,” Aiba confirms. “What’s up?”

“I... can’t reach his number. I sent him messages on LINE too but he hasn’t read it.”

“Oh, that’s weird,” Aiba sounds concerned. “Did something happen? He doesn’t usually ignore messages.”

“I’m not... sure,” Jun says truthfully. Well, some things happened for sure, but he is not sure if any of those could lead to this.

“Well, probably he’s—” Aiba is cut by a person talking to him in a loud and hurried voice. “I’m sorry, MatsuJun, it’s kind of hectic here now. I’ll talk to you again later, okay?”

Before Jun could say anything, the connection is already terminated by Aiba. Jun sighs, throwing his head back to the back of the sofa. His feet tap the floor in a fast pace, showing his restlessness. He tries to think of what to do, but his head is a mess because of the panic that starts forming.

“What did you do?” Tackey breaks the silence by asking.

Jun whips his head to Tackey’s direction, not realizing that his manager has entered the changing room while he’s calling Aiba. He wants to talk to Tackey, but he gets an idea so he postpones the talking and asks instead, “Where’s your phone?”

Tackey takes out his phone and gives it to Jun, a confused expression on his face.

Jun dials Nino’s number with Tackey’s phone. It connects. He dials the same number with his phone. It’s unreachable. He tries dialing the number with Tackey’s phone once again and it still connects.

Jun gives Tackey’s phone back and slumps on the sofa. The realization hits him so bad. It also explains why his LINE messages are left unread.

“Nino blocks me,” Jun declares, feeling all hopes dissipating to the thin air.

Tackey furrows his brows. “Why?”

“I don’t know,” Jun massages his temple, everything is confusing and it’s giving him a headache.

“Did you... do something wrong last night? Did you break up or something?” Tackey asks carefully.

Jun sighs, remembering that Tackey thinks they’re dating for real. He swings an arm to close his eyes and starts spilling the beans, telling the truth to Tackey from how he swapped their phones out of an impulse to how they end up pretending to be boyfriends. Tackey is definitely not amused by the story and he makes sure Jun knows he thinks that everything that Jun did is stupid.

“Everything went smoothly. To me, at least,” Jun sighs when he reaches the end of his confession. “I mean— After all the things that we’ve done together, does it make sense that he suddenly wants to disappear from me?”

“And what is it actually that you’ve done together? Playing around? Making fool out of everyone?” Tackey snaps. “Listen, Jun, swapping phones is your first mistake, but not the biggest. Your biggest mistake is to pretend,” Tackey stresses the last two words strongly. “Look now, are you sure everything went smoothly? Are you really sure? Or is it just a part of the pretend?”

“We slept together, Tackey, do you really think a pretend would go that far?” Jun explodes.

“It wouldn’t, but it builds the perfect atmosphere,” Tackey points out.

Jun couldn’t reply to that and he starts reconsidering everything. It is stupid to play pretend when he has a real feeling towards Nino. But, was it all really entirely just a pretend for Nino? Jun hopes it’s not.

Tackey sighs and lowers his tone. “But still, though, it’s weird that he blocks you all of the sudden. Are you sure you didn’t do anything wrong?”

“I can’t remember doing anything wrong. I mean, he still looked pretty happy last night, right before we fell asleep.” Jun opens the LINE app again, checking if Nino finally reads it. He frowns when he finds that his messages are still unread and he idly scrolls through their previous conversation. Nothing is amiss.

Tackey exhales a long breath. “So is this why you want a day off?”

Jun smiles bitterly. “Actually, I wanted to confess or something. But then, I can’t even contact him now.” Jun closes the conversation because it starts to look like it’s mocking him. He scrolls through the chat list instead and finds that a few of his friends has left him messages since he left his phone with Nino. Nino has told him about this, but he hasn’t checked them so he starts opening them one by one, starting from the newest one.

“Just go there and talk to him. Stop all the pretend—”

“Wait,” Jun jumps on his seat, stretching an arm to stop Tackey. He has a chat window opened from a friend from college, someone who he doesn’t even remember the face. It’s dated today, around 2 AM. It has been marked as read, so Nino must have opened it before he left.

The message it contains makes everything make sense.

Izumi: I heard you’re with Nino now
Izumi: isn’t that the freak back from college?
Izumi: the one you dated for a dare?
Izumi: lol what about that?
Izumi: another stupid dare?


10


When Aiba doesn’t pick up his calls too, Jun knows that words have traveled. He knows the only way he could make things right is by flying to Osaka and tell the truth about everything, but, unfortunately, his responsibility holds his back. He has to wait for two days before his schedule allows him to fly to Osaka and it’s killing him to not be able to do anything in the meantime.

When Tackey gives him a clear sign on Saturday evening, Jun doesn’t waste any time and goes directly to the airport. He books the first flight he could board on and arrives in Osaka in about an hour. He has no idea where he could find Nino, but he remembers the name of Aiba’s restaurant and finding the location is not that hard with the help of internet. He goes there and the restaurant is packed with guests.

“Aiba,” Jun calls out when he reaches the counter.

Aiba spares a glance to Jun and hardens his expression. He ignores Jun completely after that, making sure that Jun knows he’s not welcomed. He doesn’t offer Jun a seat or anything. He acts as if Jun is not there at all.

Jun sits right in front of the counter. He wants to get Aiba’s attention, but he couldn’t think of any way that wouldn’t make a fuss that might make the guests uncomfortable. He checks the clock and decides to just wait there until everyone is out. The restaurant is closing in an hour anyway.

Aiba’s wife thinks that Jun is a regular customer, so she asks what he would have but Aiba pulls her away from Jun and tells her to just ignore Jun as well.The wife looks confused but Aiba doesn’t budge when she asks about it, so she just throws an apologetic smile to Aiba and continues serving the other guests. Getting an obvious rejection like this makes Jun doubt if he’s going to make it, but he stays anyway.

Once the restaurant is empty from the guests, Jun makes his move again. He approaches Aiba who is cleaning the counter.

“Aiba,” Jun starts. “Aiba, listen to me.”

Aiba’s wife sees this and pats her husband’s shoulder before leaving them alone. Aiba might not say anything to her, but she understands that they need time to be alone.

Jun nods a bit to the wife, expressing his gratitude, and moves closer to Aiba who keeps wiping the counter clean.

“I know how it sounds like, but I swear, it’s nothing like that,” Jun says.

Aiba keeps ignoring Jun. He flinches when Jun moves closer to him and swats Jun’s hand away when Jun tries to grab him. Jun understands very well that Aiba is angry too at him—and he has the right to be—but Aiba is his best bet to get to Nino, so he stands his ground. Aiba deserves the explanation too, anyway.

“I can explain about what Nino read—”

Aiba finally stops wiping and looks at Jun straight on the eyes. There’s anger in Aiba’s kind eyes. “You want to say that it’s a misunderstanding? A lie? That there’s never any dare? Save your breath because I will never believe that.”

“That’s not what I was about to say,” Jun grabs Aiba’s arm. “There was a dare, but I really loved him. I still do!”

“Oh, do you, really?” Aiba snaps. “Didn’t you laugh with your friends after that? Talking about how silly Nino’s face is when he said yes or something? About how stupid we were for believing that you loved him for real?”

“Aiba, that’s not—”

“How could you, Jun? I thought you’re a nice person. I sincerely thought of you like that. You talked to us even when people call us names. You hanged out with us. When I heard that you confessed to Nino, I was very happy to see you both together. Even when you guys broke up, we both still thought that you’re a great person. We had no idea that you’re laughing at us with your jerk friends behind us.”

“That’s not it!” Jun groans in frustration. He knows explaining this wouldn’t be easy, but being faced with those words just ruins him. To have both Aiba and Nino doubt him is not a thing that he looks forward to. They both have always been dear to Jun, since they are two of the most sincere people that Jun have ever had the privilege to be friends with. “Listen, I was drunk, okay? I didn’t remember a thing, and when I woke up, the man that I love so much is calling me his boyfriend.”

“You could have told him after that!” Aiba points out

“And risking to lose him?” Jun makes a point by asking the question to Aiba. He sighs, knowing full well that it is his biggest mistake. “I admit that it’s a wrong thing to do, but I was afraid that if I told him, he’d be angry and I’d lose him forever. I mean, look at us now. This is the exact result that I was afraid of.”

Aiba stares at Jun’s eyes, assessing if he could believe in Jun this time.

“Masaki, believe me. Do you really think that I fake everything? Our friendships, our times together, the fun we had and the laughter, just for the sake of a goddamn dare?”

“It all could have been some sort of prank for all I know. You could have been laughing at us for it too; two freaks thinking that they could be friends with the popular guy.”

Jun feels his heart break upon hearing that. It doesn’t feel so good to be doubted by a friend he truly cares. “Do you really think of me like that?” Jun croaks.

Aiba closes his mouth at that. He is still staring at Jun, his eyes showing that he’s having an inner battle with himself. “Why should I believe in you?” he asks finally.

Jun wants to ask ‘why shouldn’t you?’ but he’s aware that there are more reasons for Aiba to not believe him at this point. He has been lying for years to both of them, after all, it’s just natural to lose faith in him. He takes a long breath and exhales it before saying, “There’s absolutely no reason for me to call you the other day other than that I wanted to see you again. And Nino too, because I knew you’d invite him. I know I had the worst kind of friends during college, but I’ve always thought of you guys as my best friends. More than them. That’s why I called you when I haven’t even once called them after college.”

Aiba observes Jun’s eyes for a few seconds more and then he closes his eyes. The tension slowly leaves his body as he exhales a long breath. His defense is crumbling. He’s giving in.

“I... honestly couldn’t believe it when Nino first told me, but it’s Nino who said that,” Aiba says, explaining himself. “It’s been rough for him. I just... don’t want to see him in a mess like this.” Aiba sighs and pours a glass of drink. He slides the glass to Jun and finally sits down. “All of this, if it’s true—”

“It is,” Jun reaffirms.

“It would be easier to accept if Nino heard it from you, not from some LINE messages that he read by chance,” Aiba says. “He has been through a lot, knowing this through this way just shatters everything for him.” Aiba opens a can of beer and sips it. “He thought it was because of him that the relationship didn’t work. He didn’t say a word but I know he’s blaming himself when you guys broke up. He was so, so happy when I told him that I was meeting you, and it took a lot of coaxing before he gave in and came along. He thought you wouldn’t be very happy to see him again.”

“I am more than happy to see him again.”

“But he had no idea,” Aiba points out. “Then, the whole mixed up phones happened and he grinned all the time, telling me how silly you were and such,” Aiba smiled a bit. “He turned into a teenager in love and it’s almost disgusting, but he’s happy so I thought all is good. He went to Tokyo with a smile on his face. He even joked that he would take the wrong phone deliberately just so you need to keep calling him every day.” Aiba frowns. “But then he came home with this news. Could you imagine how broken his heart must have been?”

Jun looks down to his glass. He knows he screwed up big time. He should have been telling everything to Nino when he has the chance, not playing pretend and fooling around instead. Now that everything is too late, he couldn’t blame Nino for hating him to the guts. “I’m sorry,” he mumbles.

Aiba sighs again and takes a paper from the drawer. He scribbles something and gives it to Jun. “Tell that to him. You owe him that,” Aiba says.

Jun reads the writing on the paper. It’s an address.

“I believe you,” Aiba lets Jun know. “But if he doesn’t, then I can’t do anything about that. So go see him and make him believe in you.”

Jun’s heart races. Aiba believes him and has given him the opportunity to explain everything to Nino. His body trembles in happiness. Even having a chance is already a luxury for him at this point.

“Thank you, Masaki,” Jun squeezes out the words as he stands up, taking the paper with him and walking backward towards the door.

“Go,” Aiba says and Jun runs to where Nino is.


11


As soon as Nino sees who is knocking at his door so late at night, he freezes on his spot and throws an incredulous look at the uninvited guest. It’s already close to midnight and there Jun is, standing in front of Nino’s door with his guilty eyes. Jun expects that Nino would slam the door right in front of his face or tell him to go, but Nino steps aside instead and lets him in.

Jun steps in unsurely, knowing that he’s not in the position to get this kind of peaceful treatment. Nino closes the door and takes brisk steps to the sofa and clears some items from there before gesturing to Jun to sit there. Nino himself opts to stay standing up, leaning on the dining table across the room. From the expression that he has on his face, Jun knows that Nino is angry.

“Speak,” Nino says after a few seconds of silence. He has his arms folded in front of his chest and he stares at Jun with a pointed glare.

Jun stands up because the distance between them is too big for his comfort. “Nino, I—”

“Don’t get closer,” Nino says fiercely. “Say what you need to say but don’t get closer.”

Jun stops. He stays on where he is but he doesn’t go back to sitting position. “Nino, I’m sorry,” he says with all the sincerity that he has. “I should have told you about the dare but, believe me, the relationship that we had was not a part of the dare. I did confess to you because of the dare—because I was too drunk and I didn’t know what I was doing—but I stayed in the relationship because I really loved you. I love you! I still do!”

Nino doesn’t say anything. He just looks at Jun with the same pointed glare. He stays completely still, like he’s waiting for Jun to finish.

“I’m sorry that I was a coward,” Jun continues. “I’m sorry that I didn’t stand up for you and Aiba when my jerk friends make fun of the both of you. I’m sorry that I didn’t have the guts to ask you out without being drunk and dared first. I’m really sorry that I also was not brave enough to tell you about the dare while we’re dating because I was afraid that you’d leave me. I’m sorry that I ruined our relationship. It kills me, knowing that I hid something from you. It kills me so much, that in the end you left me anyway. It was never you. It was always me. Me being stupid and me being a coward.”

Nino still presses his lips together, not giving any response, making Jun feel like he’s being judged, like what he’s doing is pointless. Jun stutters because he’s beginning to lose focus on what he’s about to say. He stammers, getting nervous at Nino’s lack of response.

“I know my friends were a bunch of jerks. They— they make fun of you and such. But, I swear, what we had is real. It’s not something that I did just to make fun of you or anything. I—”

Nino sighs and finally opens his mouth. “Aiba might make it sounds like it, but the bullying and the making fun of us are not the things that I have a problem with,” he says, sounding calm enough, but the hint of anger is still there. “It’s just another kind of prank, another kind of bullying. I am used with that. Even if you really did confess to me because you thought it would be funny, I’d not have much problem with that. In that case, you’d just be another bully, another unimportant someone that makes things a little bit harder for me.”

“But I—”

“Shut up, I’m not done yet,” Nino glares at Jun, giving him a warning. He continues, “My problem is that you’re lying to me. My problem is that when I asked you to end our relationship, when I thought it didn’t work out because there was something unfitting about us being together, you didn’t correct me and told me the truth. You just said yes instead. You let me go.”

Jun can not utter anything. Now it’s his turn to be the one staring while standing still.

“Years, Matsumoto. Years have passed and you have never said a thing to me. In all of those years, I thought that maybe I was in the wrong. I thought that maybe you didn’t love me or maybe the love faded out because of something that I did. I thought that we’re a failure—two people that aren’t meant to be together. I thought we’re a lost cause. I thought we’re just not meant to be.”

Nino takes a breath. His hand is shaking when he does the hand gesture while he’s talking and his eyes are red and glassy of anger. “But then I learned the truth. There was nothing wrong with us. You’re lying when you said that yes, we’d better off as friends. You’re lying when I asked you if you’re changed because you’re uncomfortable with the relationship. You picked to keep your silence rather than fighting for our relationship. You had the options and you. Chose. To. End. Us.”

Jun is stunned by the words. Everything is true but he has never thought about it in that way before. Having it being put in words like this makes Jun feel terrible. He knows that he’s at fault, but this is a whole new level of wrong. He didn’t realize that he was choosing to lie over trying to keep the relationship. All he had in mind when that happened was that he couldn’t bring himself to say the truth to Nino and that the guilt he had in him made it hard to keep the relationship going. Seeing it in a new light like this makes him feel terribly stupid to ever agree on breaking up with Nino.

Jun feels his heart fall to his feet. He swallows the lump in his throat and forces his voice to come out. “I’m sorry, Nino,” he says.

“Sorry doesn’t change anything,” Nino snorts. He pushes himself away from the dining table and walks to the door, opening it. “I think our conversation is done now.”

Jun almost walks out of the apartment in defeat. Almost. He feels so stupid and wrong that he feels unworthy to be there—that it’s just natural for him to get lost. But, luckily, his brain catches up soon enough. If he accepts his defeat and walks out of the apartment and from Nino’s life, then he will only repeat his mistake all over again. He will choose to easily give up on their relationship again. He will once more become a coward and lie to Nino about his feeling.

Jun doesn’t want that. He has done enough mistakes already. So he stands his ground and says, “No, it’s not.”

Nino turns to look at Jun at that, clearly taken aback because he is not expecting that.

“Because even though I ruined our past relationship by being a dumb fool that I was, I’m not going to ruin our current relationship by doing the same,” Jun states.

Nino scoffs, “There’s no current relationship between us.”

“And that’s you lying to me,” Jun points out. “To us.” Jun walks to Nino and closes the door. He looks into Nino’s eyes and asks, “Now tell me without lying, did you really feel nothing between us the past few days? Is everything that we did—the touches and the conversations and everything—just purely pretend?”

Nino doesn’t answer. His eyes are fixated to Jun with a bit of surprise reflected on it.

“Tell me, Nino, will you not be heartbroken if I were to walk away from that door when you told me so?”

Nino’s eyes start to become glassy, probably because Jun is agitating him in the ways that he has never encountered before.

Jun grips Nino’s shoulders and shakes him, “Tell me, do you not love me now? Answer yes to all of my questions without lying, Nino, and I’ll walk away.”

Nino swats Jun’s hands and pushes Jun away from him. He opens the door once again and shouts, “Get out!”

“Answer me!” Jun demands. He’s not going to give up on this.

“YES!” Nino yells especially loud. He grips Jun’s arm and shoves him through the door. He pushes Jun with all of his strength until Jun loses his balance and hit the hallway’s wall and closes the door before Jun could prevent it.

Jun knocks on the door desperately. He doesn’t care if it’s past midnight and if he’s going to be reported by the neighbors. He isn’t done talking with Nino yet.

“Nino, answer me!” Jun yells through the door.

There’s no answer from Nino. Jun is not even sure if Nino is still listening to him. He pounds on the door several times more and realizes that he’s doing it in vain. He finally stops, losing his hope. He slides down to kneel on the floor, his forehead and fists still attached to the door.

Jun decides that yelling will not give him anything, so he stops doing it. He then talks instead, deciding in pouring out everything that he wants to say even though he’s not sure if Nino is listening. “I was planning to ask you to start all over again,” he starts, remembering the day when he met Nino and Aiba in the cafe. “Just before I knew you found out about the dare, I planned to fly here today and come clean to you so we can try again with a clean slate.” Jun turns around and rests his back on the door. “I wanted to confess everything. So I guess, I’m going to do it now anyway.”

The silence that Jun gets as a return is not encouraging but he is determined to keep on. The chilly air of the night bites to his skin but he could feel nothing but the ache in his heart.

“First, I want to confess about the actual reason why I started to talk to you during college. It wasn’t because I needed to know more about the book you were reading. It’s because I couldn’t take my eyes off of you and it had been weeks and I couldn’t stand it anymore.”

Jun closes his eyes. It’s easier to pretend that Nino is listening to him when he closes his eyes.

“Second, if it’s not because of the dare, I might never have the courage to confess to you, so I am somehow grateful that I had some fuckers that dared me to do that as friends.”

Jun smiles a bit. He remembers how mixed up his feelings were when he realized that he had confessed to Nino.

“Third, I cried myself to sleep after we broke up. I didn’t catch a cold a day after that. I skipped classes because my eyes were swollen and I didn’t want anyone to see it.”

Jun had never admitted this to anyone. He had never admitted that he has ever cried after he’s 15. He even tried to convince himself that he was not crying that time. It was just the allergy, he told himself right then. Allergy of being very sad.

“I thought of contacting you when we’re apart but, again, I didn’t have the guts to do so. I stalked you through SNS and I felt wrong about it but I kept doing it anyway.”

Jun remembered that one time when he found out that Nino was dating someone else. It was a very unpleasant experience that stopped him from excessively following every single update of Nino online.

“I bought the book. The one you were reading when we first talked.”

Jun still had the book by his bed. He has never read it because he doesn’t like the book, he is just very fond of the memory it brings.

“I got really excited when we’re pretending to be boyfriends.”

Jun smiles bitterly.

“I didn’t have any plan to go to the festival with Sho and Toma. I just wanted to spend more time with you.”

Jun stops. Somehow, it feels more painful to admit all the things that are recent. It should be a happy thing. It should be something that they both laugh on together. Saying it out loud to no one like this underlines the fact that, after this, it all would mean nothing at all.

“And I... took your phone instead of mine is not by mistake. I took it on purpose. I wanted to have a reason to talk to you again.” Jun bites his lips. He starts to feel like this is the end. “I—” Jun swallows, finding it hard to continue talking. He stands up, facing the door once again. There are still a lot more that Jun wants to say to Nino, but he feels like it’s useless now. Nino has closed the door on him. Nino has shut him out of his life and there’s nothing more he could do. Jun wants to keep on trying but it seems useless when Nino blocks him away like this.

Still, Jun tries once again. “I—”

The door is suddenly opened, revealing Nino who has glassy eyes, red face, and a crumbling frown on his face.

“What kind of stupid person takes the wrong phone rather than striking up a conversation on LINE or something?”

Jun is baffled for a few seconds. He didn’t expect a question like this when he saw Nino opening the door again. Then, he smiles because Nino opening the door means that a chance is opening up for him.

“Apparently, this kind of stupid person,” Jun answers.

“Okay, listen,” Nino inhales sharply. “I have questions for you.”

Jun stares at Nino with eyes full of hope. Whatever question that Nino has at this point, he is ready to answer it.

“Is there anything else that you’re hiding from me? Another dare or anything?”

“No,” Jun answers readily.

“Do you genuinely consider Aiba as your friend?”

This is out of the topic but Jun answers anyway, “Yes.”

“The pretend in front of Sho and Toma, do they really not know a thing or is it another prank that you’re pulling on me?”

“They still think that we’re boyfriends.”

“Do you really, really think that you’re in love with me? Even now?”

“Yes.”

Nino takes a deep breath and then exhales it. “Last question,” he stares at Jun, “Are you okay to start over with a hypocrite that bitched the hell out of you for lying and then lied to you the second after? Because I definitely lied to you when I answered ‘yes’ earlier.”

Jun almost couldn’t believe his ears. He grins so wide that his jaws are aching and he swears his heart is doing some kind of acrobat moves in his chest. It takes him a moment before he could find his voice to answer, and when he finally answers, he does it right in front of Nino’s face.

“I’m more than okay with that,” Jun spells out and seals it with a kiss on Nino’s lips.

Date: 2016-09-13 05:09 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ica-90.livejournal.com
awwwwwwwwwwwww what a sweet Matsumiya in this. my first smile of the day. i love everything in this.
Sneaky Jun taking Nino's phone and the whole LINE conversation. Along with the whole Pokemon eggs hatch things. funny.
i thought that it would be so much easier for Jun after the night but somehow the past is cruel somehow. thank god he was brave enough to face this while trying to make it right between him and Nino again.
Thanks a lot for writing this. this is lovely. <3

Date: 2016-09-13 06:27 am (UTC)
falkner: photoshoot picture of Sakurai Sho from Arashi (嵐 ☆ goggles)
From: [personal profile] falkner
Wow, this fic is a real rollercoaster of emotions! Loved it.

Date: 2016-09-13 06:57 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] nihonarashi.livejournal.com

Ahhhh i love this fic. 1st im glad even they're ex you dont write them as angst!
Sneaky jun is cutee. Nino also cute. He also enjoying the play too.  Im happy they can solved their issue at the end and come back together ><
Thanks for this fic 😉

Date: 2016-09-13 09:16 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lazypervkami.livejournal.com

Omg I  loved it so much ! I'm a suckered for Matsumiya with happy endings xD
The phone exchange thing was a good idea !

Date: 2016-09-13 01:12 pm (UTC)
reveetoile: (Omiya kuscheln)
From: [personal profile] reveetoile
I loved this story. It was so cute and I really liked the fun messages they exchanged. It was so great to read :D

Date: 2016-09-13 01:44 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] nicefinalbeam.livejournal.com
I looooooove your Nino voice as he and Jun are getting to know each other again. His subtle teasing but overall friendliness and easy-to-get-along-with nature was perfect. The LINE messages were super fun to read through and conveyed just that right amount of flirting that I think built the tension between them well. It was so good to see one of Jun's BFFs in the story, they don't always make it to Arashi fic but Toma and Shun hang out with him so much it just seems right to have one of them around. Plus a Sho friendship! Super refreshing. I loved their interactions too.

Swapping phones intentionally was such a creative and awesome way to give Jun and Nino a reason to connect again. I'm glad that with all the miscommunication and missteps, they were able to be honest in the end ♥
Edited Date: 2016-09-13 01:45 pm (UTC)

Date: 2016-09-13 11:01 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] negai3104.livejournal.com
I love this story so much! This fic is wonderful. The flirting, teasing, playing pretend, the lying, and finally the revelation... It was a wild ride, one that I very much enjoyed :) I love this pair so much. 💛💜

Date: 2016-09-14 10:18 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] astrangerenters.livejournal.com
Ahhhhh Matsumiya! I am of course sad about the sad misunderstandings in their past but I'm so here for the future that lies ahead for them. Jun taking Nino's phone was so silly but I still ate it up eagerly because it led to all the adorable back and forth between him and Nino. OMG plus plus plus Jun is a model and has sexy model friends like Sho and Toma LMAO. I loved all their teasing and of course their encouragement of Jun and Nino's relationship. I also liked that it started out as a "fake" relationship but Jun wanted it to be real. I am such a sucker for fake relationship tropes, it's insane.

This was great, loved it!

Date: 2016-09-16 03:33 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] inaudible-d.livejournal.com
I loooooove this fic! ❤️❤️❤️
Jun taking Nino's phone on purpose because he wanted to stay in touch with Nino is probably the dumbest thing ever but I'm so glad that he did anyway. ;D
The scene where they run inside a phone booth is my favorite! And the fact that Sho then took a photo of it and sent it to Jun is A++.

P.S. I love the title ;D
Edited Date: 2016-09-16 03:42 am (UTC)

Date: 2016-09-16 06:59 am (UTC)
phrenk: (je: Jun and Nino)
From: [personal profile] phrenk
I knew the happy end to the last part was too good to last but then it all works out anyway, phew!! I'm so happy these two who've loved each other for so long with so many misunderstandings are finally honest with each other and can be in love and together and happy and and and jfl;kdsfjkal YAY.

Thank you so so much for writing this fic for me!! I had so much fun reading it and just smiling the whole time and even the hard parts made the sweet parts better~ I love that you included everyone and that Nino and Jun were so cute and sweet and hot together jkfldsjflksa oh my gosh, and the plot is amazing (SWITCHING THE PHONES! TALKING ALL THE TIME! FAKE BOYFRIENDS!!) and I love it.

♥♥♥!
Edited Date: 2016-09-16 07:28 am (UTC)

Date: 2016-09-21 02:05 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] pupilurker.livejournal.com
💜💛~^O^~

Date: 2016-09-23 05:57 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jtaytt.livejournal.com
Love the story n the whole idea of switching phone. Made me cry with its ups and downs. Thank you for a lovely piece of work.

Date: 2016-10-03 04:31 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] aprelia-chan.livejournal.com
What is it ? Really, it's midnight here . . And the last part made me cry for sure . . .
I swear tomorrow I'll get up from bed with swollen face 😂😂
It's too sweet of matsumiya 💜💛

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