title: Waiting for the King
fandom: Hikaru no Go
characters/pairings: Hikaru/Akira
rating: G/Teen
warnings: mentions of drinking
summary: Hikaru and Touya wake up in a strange place...
notes: for blind_go round 008

He shot right up, bolt upright, and looked around.

And then regretted everything he'd just done very intensely.

"Ow," he complained, rubbing his head. But. There was a window with dark curtains that went all the way to the floor. The TV was on a cabinet at the foot of his futon. Futon? The room was tiny. There was another futon... He rubbed his chest. "Where the fuck... am...?"

There was a soft groan coming from the futon next to him, and then the covers shifted and rolled, like a covers beast turning over. A tiny dark hole appeared at the top. "Why are you awake?" Touya blearily complained.

"I don't know," Hikaru sighed. It wasn't his choice. He looked around for a clock, and then realized he was still wearing his watch. "Seriously, where the fuck are we?"

"Kyoto," Touya wearily said.

Kyoto?

"Kyoto?" Hikaru rubbed his face. Damn, he needed to shave...

"Yes, Kyoto... are you really committed to this being awake thing?" Touya grumbled.

"I don't remember anything about getting here," Hikaru mused. Futons. Tiny room. A travelers' hotel? Motel? Tiny hole in the wall? What?

There was more shifting and grumbling next to him, and then he could see Touya's eyes. "Do you remember last night?"

Last night... "Waya's party. He made the Honinbou league..." Man, there had been a lot of drinking. And Hikaru dragged Touya along because for a man his age, he needed to learn to drink! Hikaru groaned. "I hope Waya is ten times as shitfaced!"

"I can hardly see how that's likely, unless he's dead," Touya deadpanned in that totally Touya deadpan kind of way. It was funny and cute but more wry and bitter than laugh-inducing.

Hikaru grinned. "Serve him right. What the fuck were we drinking, anyway? My mouth feels like a rat crawled in there, had babies, and then they all died." He stuck out his tongue for emphasis.

Touya just rolled his eyes. "It was called tequila. And I'm never, ever getting anywhere near it again. Ever."

Hikaru nodded. Good call. "So... Kyoto?"

Touya sighed, and clearly decided that Hikaru was, in fact, committed to this being awake thing. "Yeah. The party broke up early because Waya had to go to Morishita's house. You said it was too early to give up. You convinced Isumi to buy us some alcohol, and then you saw the train station, grabbed me, and said you knew just what we should do."

"And we took the train to Kyoto?" Hikaru asked, incredulous.

"Clearly," Touya dryly returned.

"And you agreed to that?" Hikaru asked, incredulity doubled.

Touya sighed. "Well... apparently..." He looked a bit embarrassed.

Hikaru decided not to delve any deeper. He threw off his covers, and looked down at his totally wrinkled clothes. Nice clothes, too! Why was he wearing his nice clothes? At least Touya had, apparently, been alert enough to take off his shirt and pants. Damn. "Well. Kyoto... hm. I guess we can grab some breakfast, and get the train back..." He rubbed his face some more. Touya didn't have to shave! So annoying...

"...We don't have to feel rushed... right? Do you have plans for today?" Touya asked, sounding... sheepish?!

Hikaru looked at him. "Well... no. Heck, as long as we're here... we could go... someplace." It had been a while since Hikaru had been in Kyoto, after all. Since, well, then. That was... five... six... years ago? Yeah, he'd sort of like to go there.

"Maybe... a temple..." Touya shrugged. "Or... a kabuki theater." Touya cleared his throat and looked down.

"Huh?" Kabuki? What? "That sounds like a school trip! ...Wait, Touya. Are you saying that you've never been to Kyoto before!?"

Touya glared at him, but his cheeks were definitely flushed, visible even in the poor light of the closed up room. Hikaru almost laughed out loud, but had enough sense to stifle it. "I didn't say anything of the sort!"

Hikaru did laugh, but pleasantly, very pleasantly! He stood up, feeling absolutely ancient. Tequila. He'd have to remember to never order that again. "All right... breakfast, then touring. I don't have any plans. It'll be... fun." Actually, after saying that out loud, it did seem like it would be fun.

Drinking was bad for the brain, it seemed...

+

"I should have known you'd want to go here," Touya ruefully shook his head.

Hikaru gave him a playfully dirty look, but. He wasn't feeling much in the mood for frivolity. This was a bad place to start, maybe. Maybe.

"Paying homage to your great hero," Touya loftily continued.

"He's no hero to me," Hikaru said, surprised at himself at the bitterness in his voice. They were, after all, standing at the grave of Torajirou. Sai wasn't here. Sai was never here.

"What?" Touya scoffed. "Right. Shindou-honinbou. Ready to go to blows against anyone who besmirches the good name of Shuusaku."

Hikaru sighed. He pulled out from his pocked the bottle of sake they had left. It only had a few drops in it, but. Of course, he had no idea if Torajirou drank. He must have, right? He must have... Must have.

"Someone from the Heian period... eighteen, nineteen, twenty... our age... he would have been married, right? Probably even had a kid or two." He never asked Sai, and Sai only cared about go. And maybe that was all that was needed, because at the time... but there was a lot of life going on around the go. And Hikaru knew nothing about any of that, not from Sai.

"Huh? Shuusaku didn't live in the Heian period," Touya corrected him, confused.

"I already said, this isn't about Torajirou!" Hikaru huffed. Like he didn't know that Torajirou wasn't from the Heian period!

"Ok... well..." Touya stared at the headstone, confused. "Yes, I suppose so. I think people got married... at like thirteen or fourteen. People didn't live very long back then."

Hikaru considered smashing the sake bottle against the headstone. But, no. That wasn't right. He capped it again, and sighed. "It's funny. It's not like we're that old. But we're not kids anymore... well, you never were one." Obviously, since Touya was Touya and didn't go on silly school trips to Kyoto. "It feels like it was all a dream. But it wasn't. I don't know when it happened... but for so long, it was like... one day just lead into the next. And then, suddenly... you turn around, and your childhood feels like... something someone else experienced."

"Shindou..." Touya started out, sounding concerned. "Last night didn't cause brain damage, did it?"

Hikaru laughed. Touya was making jokes now. That was incredible. He shook his head, and looked up to the sky. He held up the empty bottle, and shrugged. "Here's to you... Joe DiMaggio."

"Huh?" Touya looked at him, bug eyed.

That just made him laugh more. He put his arm around Touya's neck, and led him away. "C'mon. Let's do the school tour."

"Hey!" Touya complained.

For a second there, Hikaru felt like he might have been on the cusp of telling Touya... lots of things. Things that didn't even make sense to him anymore, except he used to be closer to someone that he could ever be close to anyone again. And obviously, there was no way to explain that, especially when he barely knew Sai as anyone but a teacher.

+

They blinked, walking out of the theater. The sun seemed extraordinarily bright after being in the dark, and the world seemed supernormal, after that.

"Well." Touya rubbed the back of his neck. Maybe he was still unused to it being bare. Hikaru liked Touya's new hair cut, but he did look like a totally different person. A grown up, disconnected to the child he'd been. "I bet the evening shows are... better. I mean. Afternoon... that's just tourist trade, right?"

Hikaru shook his head. "Kabuki is the origin of visual kei, you know."

Touya looked vaguely ill for a second. "How do you know that?"

"Akari had a phase..." Hikaru shrugged. "Anyway. That stuff's not for everyone."

"That's so... unJapanese," Touya laughed.

"We're professional go players. We don't need weird makeup to be totally Japanese. Though, I guess go is actually Chinese..." He laughed a bit. Still. Kabuki was weird, and that was the point.

"Let's go to the temple?" Touya suggested, grinning.

"Let's go," Hikaru agreed immediately.

+

They tiptoed around the zen garden. They threw in coins and rang the bell. They even bought fortunes. Hikaru's said something about great love or something, and Touya's said that prosperity was in his grasp. They laughed about them.

They went out onto the veranda of the temple, and looked down on the whole of Kyoto.

Hikaru, in his rumpled clothes, leaned down on the banister, feeling... a bit embarrassed to show up in a place like this in his condition. The sky was clear and bright, and the air just cool enough to feel comfortable. They were silent for a while, each mulling his own thoughts.

It was peaceful.

"Have your parents..." Touya started out, his voice a bit hush and calm, "started to nag you about getting married?"

"Aha!" Hikaru quickly bit down on that, but. Married? Hell no, he wasn't ready for that. He hadn't even mastered the art of doing his own laundry. He went to see his mother every Monday and brought it for her to do. He did simple chores around the house in compensation! He wasn't a child, and anyway, men shouldn't know about such things! "No... no, my parents wouldn't do that, though."

"Really?" Touya looked at him, honestly surprised. "But you're an only child, too."

Ah, of course. Hikaru straightened up, taking a deep breath. "Yeah, well... my parents aren't likely to do that to me. Your parents are?"

Touya expression bittered, and he looked away. "My father... thinks, well. I'm supporting myself, I've got a good name, a stable income... it's the last step to... becoming a man."

Hikaru grunted in understanding. Why was becoming a man so complex? Seemed like it was something that was just supposed to happen. Why did it have to be so much work? Was becoming a woman just as hard? He'd ask Akari, but she'd definitely make fun of him. Then again, she'd already had some hard times with her boyfriend... he was still a bit in shock about that pregnancy scare a few months ago. "Shouldn't you be a kid first?"

Touya just sighed. "Seriously, your parents don't care about this stuff?" He gave Hikaru a searching look.

Taking a deep breath... yeah, ok. Well. He'd never told anyone this, anyway. "My dad... when he was in college... he had a roommate."

Touya looked unimpressed.

"In a one bedroom apartment."

At first, Touya still didn't react. And then... "...Ah! You mean...!"

"My dad still hangs out with him sometimes." Hikaru shrugged. "Like, they go out drinking and stuff. His name is Miyake. He's a nice guy. He's got a wife, and three kids. His daughter's a lawyer."

"So... wait... your dad..." Touya furrowed his brow, holding his hands shoulder width apart, like he could work it out with sign language or something.

It was... well, cute. "I don't know. Honestly, I don't. I didn't even know Miyake was anything more than... a friend of my dad's, not for the longest time. I'm sure as hell not about to ask my dad if... they were... you know, in love or... what. So, I don't know." He shook his head. It was amazing, how much you could not know about the people you were closest to, after all. "One time, a relative made a comment about setting me up with some nice girl, and my dad said, really forceful and all, Hikaru will do what he wants to do. And that's all I've ever heard on the subject, ever."

"Wow. ...Are your parents... in love, or...?" Touya asked, still trying to work it out.

"How should I know?" Hikaru laughed. "Are your parents in love?"

Touya instantly stiffened, and looked at Hikaru with dismay.

"I mean... no offense or anything!" Hikaru quickly held his hands up. "It's just... your family is so... traditional, and..." Love wasn't traditionally part of marriage.

Touya looked back out at the vista, a bit green around the gills. "...How should I know?" he echoed. "I once asked my mom. If she was happy. She... looked at me, surprised. And then she patted me on the head and said I was a good boy." He shrugged, helpless.

"Wow," Hikaru sighed. "I would never ask my mother that. What if she actually answered me?"

They both stared out at the city, once again lost in their own thoughts. The sun was heading off to the west, getting brighter and harder to look at.

"Let's get sushi," Hikaru suggested.

+

The train made a dull whooshing sound as the black outside streamed by. Hikaru kept smoothing out his pants, but honestly, his mom was going to roll her eyes at him when she saw them. He didn't think it was possible for anyone to be so wrinkled.

He looked around. There was an old woman two rows ahead of them, knitting. A couple on the other side of her, three businessmen behind them... Hikaru sighed, feeling constrained. He turned his head toward Touya.

"Were we really drinking on the train last night?"

Touya grimly nodded.

"I can't believe we didn't get thrown off or something," Hikaru sighed. Wait, they couldn't really do that, could they? What did they do to drunken disorderlies on trains?

"We were the only ones in the car," Touya sighed.

"How come you remember so much of last night?" Hikaru asked, feeling a bit cross. It wasn't right that Touya should remember, and he shouldn't!

"There are things I'd like to forget," Touya grumbled. What? Like what? Hikaru didn't puke or anything, did he?

Damn, that was annoying. "Hey, Touya." Hikaru put his head down on the back of the seat, repositioning himself for a nap. He looked at Touya's profile. "Are you happy?"

Touya gave him a funny look, bemused, maybe, and then he patted Hikaru on the head. "You're a good boy."

"Hey!" Hikaru laughed, messing up his hair.

He closed his eyes, and imagined that Sai was watching over them. It was harder and harder to see him these days. Hikaru's go had changed a lot, naturally, over time. And Hikaru had no idea how Sai would react to him getting drunk and getting on a train with Touya. Had Sai ever gotten drunk?

There were too many things he didn't know, but it was how it was.

"Wake me when we're home," he sighed.

Touya made a soft sound of agreement, but Hikaru suspected that Touya was already asleep himself.

+








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