title: Closer
fandom: Prince of Tennis
characters/pairings: Tezuka/Fuji
rating: G
warnings: domestic
summary: Fuji helps Tezuka get ready.
notes: for telephonedeath, by way of waxfeathers. merry christmas! ^_^

Like any other couple, or any roommates, even, they had a morning routine. Tezuka would use the bathroom first, and he would be less than five minutes, always. Fuji would use the bathroom next, and he could be as much as twenty minutes, depending. Tezuka would make breakfast during this time, and they would eat together, partaking in minimal conversation. Even though Tezuka would always be awake for about an hour before Fuji, doing his morning exercises, he was not really at his best in the morning.

After breakfast, they would go back to the bathroom together, to wash up and get ready to get dressed.

Tezuka shaved every day, though his hair was fine, and grew in lightly. Still, he shaved every morning, and even more charmingly, he always used a straight edge. Fuji would watch him as he brushed his teeth. Fuji only shaved every other day, or when he thought about it, because he just wasn't prone to facial hair. They went on vacation once, camping, forgoing little things like shaving. At the end of the week, Tezuka's chin, jaw, and upper lip were covered in almost fleecy brown hairs, but Fuji still appeared to be clean-shaven.

Shaving was a ritual for Tezuka, and Fuji imagined, though he never asked, that it was something his grandfather had taught him. Many of his rather rigid customs, like tucking in bedsheets, and making tea, he learned from his grandfather. He started out with running the water hot, and wetting his face thoroughly. Then, he would get out the shaving mug soap and his shaving brush, and he would coat his face with a thick lather. He'd wash the blade, and then start at his side-burns, cheeks, the sides of his neck, the middle of the neck, the upper and lower lip, and finally his chin, always with the growth of his hair, not against it. He moved the blade slowly and cautiously, angling it for maximum efficiency.

Fuji watched this ritual every morning, until he had it memorized, and his fingers itched to wrap around the handle of the blade, and clear away the sections of lather the way that Tezuka did. He would lean over as he brushed, spiting into the running water Tezuka used to clean his blade, and he would watch the meticulous movements of Tezuka's hands.

He loved Tezuka's hands, anyway, in whatever task they were set to. Tezuka's hands were long, strong, and precise, his tapered fingers moving gracefully when he was writing, or typing, and his hand as a whole seemingly designed to hold a tennis racquet firmly.

It was only a matter of time before Fuji needed to hold the blade himself.

"Mm, 'Mitsu. Can I finish your shave?" There was nothing particularly tempting about this morning, except that Tezuka had made Fuji favorite breakfast, French toast with honey, and it left Fuji with a full and satisfied feeling.

Tezuka's hands did not falter, but when he was done with the stroke of the blade, he set it down, and looked to Fuji. "Excuse me?"

"I want to try. I've been watching you. I know how it works." Fuji beamed.

Tezuka looked skeptical, but he held out the blade for Fuji to take, regardless.

Fuji took the blade, his fingers brushing against Tezuka's as he did. It seemed like such an overwhelmingly casual acceptance of trust, that Fuji felt a bit awed. Tezuka occasionally had that effect on him.

He turned to seat himself on the counter, next to the sink, and he pulled Tezuka to stand between his legs. He hooked his feet around Tezuka's legs, resting them at the back of Tezuka's knees. He washed the blade, and then he indicated to Tezuka that he wanted Tezuka to lift his chin.

He was taking over at the middle of the neck, so there wasn't that much more to do, but he was supremely careful to put the blade at the exact angle that Tezuka used, and the same speed. It was hard to gauge the pressure exactly, solely based on visual learning, but he looked into Tezuka's eyes, and pressed until Tezuka looked like he might be about to wince.

As he cleared away the lather, he ran his fingers over the skin, checking for smoothness. Of course, Tezuka really didn't need to shave every day, but that wasn't important.

He held up Tezuka's nose as he did the upper lip, and it was amusing him slightly, the way that Tezuka was looking away as his hands were clenched at his sides, but he said nothing.

Fuji finished up the shave, and then took the bottle of moisturizing after shave, and spread it over his hands, so he could cover Tezuka's face with a fine layer of it.

He loved the smell of this stuff. Musky, but clean and fresh, a masculine scent, but not overpowering. Tezuka was watching him as he tended to Tezuka's skin, and he found that his hands were a bit unsteady.

Really, the straight edge was unnecessarily sharp and large! They made many fine electric razors that were just as good as the blade. Tezuka's grandfather should learn to update to the modern era, so Tezuka could adopt a safer habit for his morning ritual.

Fuji was a bit lost in his thoughts of Tezuka's risk-taking. He was concentrating on Tezuka's bottom lip. He should have seen it coming, but he was completely taken aback by Tezuka's kiss.

It was a good kiss, too. He quickly adjusted to it, and made sure he enjoyed it.

"Thank you," Tezuka said stiffly, and then he shifted over to clean up after himself.

Fuji smiled. "You can shave me the next time I need it."

Tezuka raised an eyebrow, but didn't turn his gaze to Fuji. "With the straight edge?"

He considered it for a moment first, and then he hopped off the counter, and kissed Tezuka's smooth cheek. "You can use any tools you like, as long as you don't cut me." He winked warningly at Tezuka.

"Of course not," Tezuka replied dryly.

Fuji walked out to their bedroom, going to the closet to select clothes for himself and for Tezuka, if Tezuka chose to wear what he selected. He most often didn't. He opened and closed his fists, looking down at his hands in wonder.

"I had your life in my hands, you know," Fuji observed quietly, knowing that sufficient time had passed that Tezuka would be out of the bathroom.

"Syuusuke. You always have my life in your hands." Tezuka spoke with such a placid, deadpanned voice that it took a moment for Fuji to really hear what he had said.

But now, Fuji was just watching Tezuka again, so Tezuka had the chance to get to the closet first, and select clothes for himself and Fuji. Fuji didn't mind. Tezuka was better than he at that sort of thing, and Tezuka had picked a shirt of his own for Fuji.

Fuji smelled the collar before slipping it on. It must not have needed washing since the last time Tezuka wore it, because it still smelled of Tezuka, of his sweat, and of his aftershave. Fuji breathed it in deeply, and then pulled the shirt on, holding it closed so as to affect the appearance of the shirt holding him tightly.

"You're in a strange mood this morning," Tezuka remarked lightly.

Fuji just grinned. "All according to schedule," he replied with a laugh.

Helping Tezuka to shave would need to become an irregular part of the morning routine from then on.