Title: Operation Get Aoi and Rehiko Together
Pairing: Ryo/Shota, Subaru/Ohkura
Summary: Shota tells his lover about his secret. Ryo gets very angry and breaks up with Shota. Subaru and Maru try to get the lovers back together.
When Kitagawa Johnny had formed Kanjani 8 he had called it his first girls group. Everyone had laughed at the joke, not telling anyone how close to home it was. The group was home to three transvestites, one who called himself transgender and three whom everyone assumed was the normal ones. Of course when one of those normal ones was Yasuda Shota, who didn't believe in lines between female and male everything become more complicated.
Shota was getting ready for his date with Ryo. His macho, manly boy friend had been out of town for two weeks and Shota was excited at the chance to spend some time with him.
"What are you wearing tonight?" Shota’s roommate Subaru asked, he was dressed as his real self Bara-ko who was female. "Something pretty?"
"Why do you think I should wear something pretty?"
"You need to dress up for Ryo. Has he ever seen your new violet yukata?" Subaru suggested. "I could do your hair for you."
"When Ryo goes out with a man, he wants him to be a man." Shota brushed his hair.
"You wear skirts around him." Subaru reminded him.
"Yes I do, but I'm not Aoi when I'm near him." Shota tried to explain. “I don’t think he would like to see me as a girl.”
"Ryo-Chan’s bisexual. Why wouldn't he want to go out with Aoi?"
"Ryo-Chan doesn't know about Aoi." Shota admitted.
"You have to tell him about Aoi."
Shota looked at Subaru. "I think Aoi needs to stay at home."
"Ryo loves you. He understands about my other side, he will understand yours." Subaru paused. "Aoi deserves to be loved too."
"I'm afraid he'll break up with me." Shota confessed.
"Ryo loves you," the older man pointed out. "He'll love Aoi. Come on, you have to tell him."
"All right, I'll tell him." Shota told his roommate.
Shota always looked forwards to his dates with Ryo. Because they were famous, they really couldn't go out to many places. Ryo always made up for it by creating a dating spot inside his apartment. This time Ryo had sent out for something from a fancy cafe. He had set up a small table in the living room laid with his best china and silverware. Candles bathed the room in a warm glow.
"I've really missed you." Ryo told Shota when they were finished eating. They sipped on red wine.
"I missed you too." Shota admitted.
"I hate that Johnny-sama keeps me so busy." he told him. 'I liked it when NEWS was on hiatus. We could spend more time together."
"I don't mind, as long as you come home to me."
"Home...." Ryo pulled something out of his pocket, it was a small box. "We spend so much time together, but at the end of the day one of us always have to return home."
"That's because we don't live together."
"I have something for you." Ryo passed the box to Shota.
Shota opened it, inside was a key to Ryo's apartment.
"I want us to live together," Ryo told him. "Please Sho-Chan, let's make this our home."
Tears stung Shota’s eyes. "I would really love that."
Ryo got up; he went to Shota kissing his lover's lips. "You've made me the happiest man in the world."
"I love you so much Ryo-Chan." Shota smiled happily.
"I love you too." Ryo took his hand. "Let's celebrate."
"All right." Shota realized that if they were going to live together, he had to tell Ryo the truth about his other side. "Now that we're living together, there is something you have to know about me."
"You can tell me anything," Ryo's eyes full of love for Shota.
"There is a girl that stays with me." Shota admitted.
"A girl?" Ryo gasped. "You live with a girl?"
"Her name is Aoi." Shota tried to explain.
"What is Aoi to you?" Ryo demanded.
"She's my other half…." Shota began.
"But she's with you?" Ryo interrupted.
"Yes, all the time." he admitted.
"You told me that I was the only one in your life." Ryo spat. "And I find out that you have a girl friend?"
"She's not my girl friend." Shota tried to stay calm. "She's..."
"Bullshit!" Ryo thundered. "I trusted you! I thought you really loved me!" the slap came out of no where. "You're a slut, nothing but a slut!"
"Ryo please, listen to me." Shota begged. "You're the only one in my heart."
"But not in your bed!" Ryo exploded. "She probably has big tits! That's what you would like in a girl!"
"We're finished! Go back to your whore!" Suddenly his fist connected with Shota's eye. Shota fell to the ground. He was tough, but what Ryo did shocked him. Ryo had promised Shota he would never be like his other boy friends, the ones that had beaten Shota. He had sworn that he would never, ever hit Shota.
"You lied to me! You promised!" Tears poured down Shota's face.
"No wonder you got beat by your other lovers." Ryo hit him again. "You've probably betrayed them too!"
"I'm going." Shota told him. "I'll never come back."
"Tell that little slut of yours that I hate her!" Ryo told him. "I hate you too!"
Shota had promised not to go home. He knew the apartment was Subaru's that night, and that Subaru had a date with Ohkura. Shota didn't care. There was no where else for him to go. His whole body hurt from the beating. The relationship that Shota had believed would last forever was over. Not only that, but Ryo had broken his promise to Shota.
Shota went into the apartment. He barely got the door closed when he began to cry uncontrollably.
"What is he doing here?" He could hear Ohkura sigh.
"Shut up darling, she's crying." Subaru shushed his lover.
"I'm sorry, I'll leave." Shota tried to stop his tears but he couldn't.
Soon Subaru was at his side. "Who hit you up?"
Shota could only sob. His heart hurt too much. Pain and grief bubbled up like a volcano.
"What happened? Where's Ryo?" Ohkura asked concerned. "Why didn't he protect you?"
"He did this to me. He says I betrayed him." Shota sobbed. "He promised, but he's like the rest."
"Come here," Subaru took Shota in his arms, rocking him.
"Why did he do this?" Ohkura demanded.
"I tried to tell him about Aoi. He didn't want to hear about her! He hates her!" Even more tears fell.
"How can he hate her? He's never met her." The drummer sounded like he couldn’t believe his ears.
"Ryo wouldn't listen to me. He didn't understand that it's my other half. He thinks I have another lover." Shota clung onto his friend. His heart felt like it would never heal.
Ryo felt his insides tear out. Shota his wonderful Shota had a lover. A real girl, not someone like Ryo's other side Rehiko. Ryo went to his closet and took out a silk yukata and changed into it. He wondered if Shota was with Aoi. Ryo could just see her in his mind's eye. She probably had large breasts, long hair. Everything that Ryo wished he could be.
His roommate Maru returned to the apartment about an hour after Ryo had thrown out his lover.
"Where is Sho-Chan?" Maru asked.
"I threw him out." Ryo told him. "I had to..."
"I don't understand," The bass player said confused. "You were going to ask him to be our roommate."
"Sho Chan had a girlfriend." Ryo fought back the tears. "All this time, he was with a girl. A real girl. Not someone like me."
"That hurts, doesn't it?" Maru sat down beside him.
"I wonder, if he had known about Rehiko, would anything have changed?" a tear rolled down his cheek. "Would he have left Aoi for her?"
"You should talk to him. Try and explain to him about Rehiko. That inside you feel as if you’re a girl. Perhaps he’ll change his mind." His friend suggested gently.
"I can't," he admitted. "I promised Shota that I wouldn't hurt him like his other lovers. That I would never hit him. But I did. I punched him."
"Do you want him back?" Maru asked.
"Of course I want him back!' Ryo told him. "But he's got a girl friend!"
The tears came, Ryo sobbed broken hearted. Maru sat beside him, taking him into his arms.
"If only," Ryo kept telling himself. "If only I was a real girl, Shota might never have left me."
It was a secret meeting. Maru and Subaru had locked themselves into a disused dressing room. They knew it would take the both of them to figure out what went wrong with their roommates.
"So what's this meeting about?" Subaru asked.
"Shota and Ryo broke up." Maru reminded him. “We thought we should discuss it.”
"You mean Ryo beat up Shota and tossed him out."
"It's more then that." Maru told him quickly. "Ryo was jealous of Shota's girl friend."
"Shota's girl friend?" Subaru couldn't believe his ears. "Shota doesn't have a girl friend."
Maru took out a pad and looked at it. "Ryo told me her name is Aoi. She has long hair and big tits.”
Subaru began to snicker. He turned away from Maru to compose himself. "What else did he tell you?"
"Just that he's heartbroken that Shota likes girls."
"Ryo likes girls." Subaru pointed out. "So I don't get why that's such a big deal."
"This Aoi chick lives with you." Maru began. "Tell me about her. Is she nice or is the only reason Shota likes her is because of her tits?"
“Her tits?” Subaru repeated. “Does Ryo have a thing about girl’s tits?”
“No, he just thinks that Aoi had big ones.” The bass player told him. “Ones so big that Ryo would never be able compete against them.”
"Aoi is Shota." Subaru said quickly. "Shota's transgendered."
"Why didn't he tell this to Ryo?" Maru sighed.
"Shota tried to last night." He pointed out. "But Ryo lost his temper, again."
"Ryo is a baka." Maru decided. "An even bigger baka then me."
"Why would you say that?"
"Ryo is jealous of Aoi, because he wonders what it would have been like if Sho-Chan had met Rehiko." Maru explained. "Ryo's transgendered too."
"This is insane." Subaru decided.
"Really insane." The bass player agreed.
"Hina, Yoko and I are trans. You're a drag queen. Why on earth would those two bakas think they had to hide their real selves from anyone?"
"But to make everyone happy. We're going to have to get Rehiko together with Aoi." Subaru decided.
"How are we going to do that?"
"We'll come up with a plan." Subaru decided. "And to make it work, we'll talk Ryo into going along."
"Ryo won't do what you tell him." Maru reminded him.
"I know I'll make him think our plans his idea." he smiled at Maru. "Come on, we have to do something."
"You're right, we do." Maru decided.
The two friends began to plan Operation get Aoi and Rehiko together. They considered if they should ask the rest of the group to help, but they didn’t want to get the plan too involved. They just hoped that by the time Valentines Day came, that Shota and Ryo would be back to being lovers.
Just like that, we had broken up. Just like that it was over.
The song played on the radio, making Ryo's heart hurt even more. Loosing Shota had changed Ryo's life. It was like his heart had been ripped from his chest and Shota had stomped on it. Ryo could feel himself tear up again. He didn't want to cry again for Shota.
It had been three days since Ryo had broken up with Shota. He had worked with Shota after the break up, but they hadn’t' talked or even looked at each other. Shota stayed away from Ryo. Either Subaru or Ohkura was at his side, protecting him. The bruises were still there, even though the make up ladies had tried to cover them.
"I need to talk to you," Subaru came into the group's dressing room. He shut and locked the door.
Ryo reached over and turned off the radio. "What's up?"
"It's about Shota." Subaru began.
"I don't want to talk about him." Ryo cut him off.
"Why not?" he demanded. "You thought it was okay to beat up your boy friend?"
"I only beat hum up after..."
"After what?" Subaru interupted. "What could Shota have done to you that would make you hurt him like this?"
"He cheated on me!" Ryo snapped.
"Shota would never cheat on you!" Subaru moved to hit Ryo, but he stopped himself. "He loves you!"
"All this time he was with Aoi!" Ryo tried to control his temper. To keep the pain he was feeling out. He couldn't let Subaru know just how much he hurt. "Shota led me on! I loved him! I thought we had a future together, and then he asks if I want to meet his girl friend."
"You don't understand about Aoi."
"What's there to understand?" He spat. "He told me that there is a girl staying with him. He lives with her."
"Aoi is Shota!" Subaru picked Ryo up, shoving him against the wall. "Shota's like me. He’s transgendered!"
"I know Shota; if he was Trans he would have told me!"
"He was afraid to tell you! He told me that you would leave him. I didn't believe him!" Subaru screamed. "I talked him into telling you! I told him you would understand! If anyone betrayed someone, it was you!"
"We never kept secrets from each other." Then Ryo realized that both of them had kept secrets. "I'm just as bad as Shota. I kept Rehiko from him."
"Who the hell is Rehiko?" Subaru paused for a moment; the angry seemed to visibly drain from his face. "Oh my god, you're Trans."
"Yes, I am." Ryo closed his eyes, waiting to be punched. He knew that he deserved it.
"Do you still love Shota?"
"Of course I do." A tear rolled down Ryo's cheek. "But I ruined that forever. I did something to him that he'll never forgive."
"I have a plan; I think it will get the two of you back together." Subaru told him. "But you'll have to trust me."
Ryo nodded. "I do trust you."
Shota didn't tell anyone just how much he missed Ryo. He hadn’t' talked to Ryo since their break up. When they had worked together, Ryo went out of his way to avoid him. Ryo had gone back to Tokyo, to work with his other group NEWS. But it was different this time, Ryo no longer sent him messages, no longer called him in the middle of the night just to see how he was.
Shota was alone. He hated being alone. Shota went on, pretending that nothing was wrong. He smiled for the cameras. But inside his heart was breaking.
Shota had gotten home late from work. But then Johnny's never had normal hours. He found his roommate sitting on the couch with his lover Ohkura. They where watching a movie on TV, both ate from the same bowl of popcorn.
"A package arrived for you when you where gone." Subaru told him.
"A package?" Shota tried to keep the hope out of his voice.
Shota picked the package up off the table. It was a small one. He turned it over in his hands. It was postmarked Tokyo. Could it be from Ryo?
He quickly opened the package. Inside was a guitar pick made of gold. It was carved. "To Aoi, with all my love Rehiko."
He felt his heart sink. It wasn't from Ryo. It was some stranger that Shota had never met. He wondered if somehow a fan had gotten a package to him. But why would that fan call him Aoi?
"Baru-ko, do you know anyone named Rehiko?" Shota asked.
"Rehiko's a good friend of mine." Subaru told him.
"Why is your friend sending me a package?"
"Because he thinks Aoi is beautiful and wants to go out with her."
"I can't." Shota set the package down on the table. "Please tell your friend to stop sending me things."
"I will next time I see him." Subaru promised.
In the three weeks since Shota had broken up with Ryo, things began to arrive daily for Aoi. First a box of Aoi's favorite truffles. Then other things, many things. No matter where Shota went, something from the mysterious Rehiko was waiting for him. All the notes with the gifts said. "To Aoi, I love you. Rehiko"
It was beginning to really worry Shota. This friend of Subaru's was acting more and more like a stalker.
Subaru wasn't giving Shota any answers about the mystery of Rehiko, so he decided to ask Ohkura.
"What you know about this Rehiko guy?" Shota asked his friend.
"What's there to know?" he shrugged.
"Have you ever met him?"
"Of course I have, you have too." he looked around to see if Subaru was coming. "I'm not supposed to tell you anything."
"So you know him." Shota realized.
"Yes, I know him." the drummer admitted.
"He's from Tokyo right?"
"You could say that."
"A Tokyo Johnny." Shota mused. “Well, Yamapi loves cross dressers. So does Kame. Which one is it?"
"I'm not supposed to tell you." Ohkura looked both ways again. "Baru-ko Chan will kill me if I tell you."
"Tell you what; I'll give her that black teddy that you love."
"The black teddy...." Ohkura murmured. His eyes got a far away look. "Baru-ko looks so sexy in it. If you gave it to her right now, she could wear it for me tonight.""
Shota had to get Ohkura out of fantasy land. "Tacchan, I wont' give it to her if you don't give me some kind of clue!"
"Humm...Ryo works closely with him." The drummer finally said.
"Is he in NEWS?" Shota guessed.
"Yes, he's in NEWS." his friend said perkily.
Just then Subaru came out of the bedroom
dressed as Baru-ko. Ohkura went to his lover, kissing his lips.
"What was that for?' Subaru asked.
"Aoi is going to give you my favorite black teddy!" The drummer enthused.
"Really?" Subaru asked.
"Yeah she is! I can't wait to see you in it!"
Shota smiled to himself. Rehiko was really Yamapi, a good friend of Ryo's. Shota decided that he had to make Ryo jealous.
"Baru-ko, can you do something for me?" Shota asked.
Subaru pulled away from his love. "Sure what?"
"I want to thank Rehiko for sending me these gifts. Do you think he would like a photo of me?" Shota asked.
"A photo?" Subaru repeated.
"It's the least I could do." Shota tried to smile innocently. "Aoi will put on her prettiest dress, and perhaps it will make Rehiko happy."
NEWS was traveling together on a bus. It was a cold February night. Ryo had been sending things to Shota for three weeks without any response. He wondered if he was simply wasting his time.
Everyone was waiting for the leader of NEWS to arrive so they could go. Yamapi finally boarded the bus and plopped down beside Ryo.
Ryo's phone beeped. It was late, but because of work he still was up. He glanced at it.
"Who’s calling?" Yamapi asked.
Ryo looked at the phone. It was a text message from Ohkura. "Tacchan."
Ryo looked at the message. "Aoi thinks she has figured out who Rehiko is. Shota thinks Yamapi is Rehiko!"
He didn't answer the message. But a few moments passed, and it beeped again. This time it wasn't a message, but a photo. Ryo opened it. It was a photo of Aoi, taken in Subaru's living room.
"Let me see!" Yamapi grabbed the phone from Ryo. He looked at the photo.
"Oh it's Shota!" the leader of NEWS gasped.
"Her name's Aoi."
"She's very beautiful." Yamapi smiled. "You'd think she'd go out with me?"
"No! She's mine!" Ryo grabbed the phone from his friend.
"You broke up with her," his friend reminded him. "She's free. This means I can go out with her!"
"Go to hell!' Ryo snapped. He turned from his friend.
Then he looked at the photo again. Yamapi was right, she was beautiful. Ryo still loved Shota very much, and looking at the photo he also loved Aoi.
The doorbell rang; Shota didn't bother to answer it. It would probably be another gift from Yamapi. Since he had solved the mystery of who Rehiko was, he felt his heart break a little bit more. He had hoped that somehow Rehiko could have been Ryo.
"You have a delivery!" Subaru came into the living room carrying two boxes. "Who are they from?"
"I don't know until I look." Shota took the packages from him.
Shota read the first one's card. "You're hot. I would be honored if we went out." It was signed Yamapi.
Inside the package were some chocolates. It wasn't anything that Shota really liked, and that was one thing. Rehiko always knew what Shota liked.
The next package was from Rehiko. He read the note. "Ohkura sent me a photo of you. You are so beautiful my beloved Aoi. I sometimes wish that things could have been different. But I have a hard time controlling my temper, and I hurt my beautiful Aoi. Please wear this to remind us of what we used to have. How my not trusting you took you away from me. Every time I close my eyes, I dream about you. I love you so much. Rehiko."
Shota read the note over and over to himself. He knew who Rehiko was from the moment he read the note. It was Ryo.
"What does the note say?" Subaru asked.
"Nothing," Shota shoved the note into his pocket. He opened the package. Inside was a diamond and sapphire tennis bracelet. Shota could remember looking at it with Ryo, but it had been too expensive for him to buy.
Shota put the bracelet on. While he looked at it, he realized one thing. Ryo still loved him, not only that he was sorry for what he did to Shota.
"I'll get you back." Shota promised himself.
Maruyama was sick of Ryo’s moping around. He decided that Ryo needed to dress up. He knew that going out would make him feel better. He had set Ryo up for a blind date. Maru had told him that this man liked girls like Rehiko. Ryo didn't want a date. He had gone along with Maru. Hoping that a date it would make the pain go away.
Ryo sat on his bed sulking. He wore a black silk robe. He knew he should dress up, but he didn’t feel like it. All he could think of was his lover Shota. He wanted to go to Shota and beg him to take him back.
"Rehiko Chan, you need to start getting ready!" Maru told Ryo. 'We're going on a double date tonight!"
Ryo knew that no matter how wonderful the blind date was, he would only be one night. He wouldn't let the man touch him, would let him kiss him. It wouldn't be Shota, whom Ryo loved so desperately.
Ryo felt hollow inside. He didn't want this date. He wanted to roll back time and be back with Shota.
"Why aren't you getting ready?" Maru asked again.
"I don't feel like getting ready." Ryo repeated for the millionth time. "If your friend wants to date me, he can date me like this!"
“Come on Rehiko,” Maru said gently. “It’s just going out to eat. It isn’t anything but that. You won’t have to sleep with him.”
“Just a meal?” He asked suspiciously.
“We’re going to a good café, so you have to look good.” Maru smiled again, and Ryo realized that his friend was hiding something.
Thirty minutes later, Ryo sat in Maru’s room, wearing his favorite red bra and panties under a silk robe. Maru was going through his closet, desperately trying to find something that would make someone as depressed as Ryo look good. "Now where is it?"
"I'm not sure I should dress up." Ryo sighed. 'What if we get caught?"
"No one will catch us." Maru pulled out Ryo's favorite black dress. "Here you are, hiding from me."
"That's my dress." Ryo gasped. "You expect me to borrow something you stole from me?"
"You gave it to me as a gift!" Maru countered.
"No, I said you could wear it one time for a date, and you never gave it back." Ryo snatched the dress from Maru. He took off his robe and put it on. "See, I look much better in it then you do."
"I look like Audrey Hepburn it."
"You do not! You are too big to look like Audrey Hepburn!"
"Hina-chan says I do." Maru smiled at his friend. "Please let me have it back when you're done with it."
"I'll think about it."
"If you don't, I'll tell Aoi you've got a thing for her belly piercing." he threatened.
The timer on Ryo's hot rollers beeped. That was something else Maru had borrowed, the bass player smiled. "All ready to do your hair."
"Why did you have to steal my hot rollers? You have short hair.""
"So do you Rehiko.” Maru snapped. “Why don’t you wear a wig?”
"I don’t feel like wearing a wig." Ryo moved towards the curlers. "I guess I better curl my hair."
"You will not" Maru shoved Ryo back into his seat. . "I'm making you feel special, so I do your hair."
"All right," Ryo agreed with some trepidation.
Maru rolled Ryo's hair in curlers. Maru always adored making over Ryo. He was much prettier then the bass player.
Then Maru decided he better dress up too. He picked out his favorite dress, put it on, and then did his make up. While he did, Ryo moped again.
"I wish I could be dressing up for Aoi," Ryo sighed.
"You'll never do that again.” Maru began to go through his make up case. "You need to look like a knock out."
"We're just going out to eat." Ryo reminded him.
"So? Why can't you look beautiful when you’re eating?" Maru picked out some make up. He began to put foundation on Ryo's face. "Just close your eyes and pretend you're going out with Shota."
Ryo didn't' say anything. Just sat there while Maru did his face.
A few minutes later, Maru took out Ryo's hot rollers and brushed his hair. Then Maru took a good look at him. "Eyeliner! I forgot to line your eyes."
"You can't go without eye liner."
"All right," Ryo closed his eyes, and let his friend apply liner to his eyes. He could just imagine for a moment that he was dressing up for Shota. That his lover would smile at him, and tell him he was beautiful.
The doorbell rang. Ryo didn't move to get it. He didn't want to answer it. He wanted to hide away. Now that he was ready, he realized he didn’t want to go out with any friend of Maru’s.
Maru tapped on the door. "Your new boy friend sent you something."
"He sent you red roses." Maru showed them to Ryo. "Aren’t' they beautiful?"
"Can you put them in something for me?" Ryo asked.
"What is it?" Maru asked.
"I had always wished Shota would have brought me roses." he tried to fight the tears. "I'm still not sure I can go out with this man. I feel like I'm cheating on Shota."
"Why not have a date, and then decide?" Maru encouraged.
Shota took a taxi to Ryo’s apartment. He was dressed as Aoi. Maru had told Shota that Ryo really wanted to speak to Aoi. Shota still felt afraid, what if Ryo rejected Aoi?
"Rehiko's almost ready." Maru told him.
"Are you sure she really wants to talk to me?" Shota asked.
"Of course she will!" Maru smiled.
With a lot of encouragement from Maru, Ryo came into the living room. It wasn't Ryo, it was Rehiko, Ryo real self. She was wearing a tight black dress that fell high on her thigh. Her hair was curled tightly against her scalp.
"Aoi! What are you doing here?" Ryo gasped.
"Hello Rehiko,” Shota told him. "I thought we could go out."
"We can't. Maru-Chan set me up with someone else. I'm sorry Aoi-Chan." Ryo turned and ran back into the bedroom. He shut the door behind him.
"I thought she wanted to go out with me." Shota told Maru. "Is she going out with someone else?"
"Why didn't you tell her I was coming?"
"It was part of the plan. Do you want me to talk to her?" Maru offered.
"No, I'll go."
Shota went to Ryo's bedroom. The door was unlocked. He found his friend sitting on the bed.
"What are you doing here?" Ryo asked.
"I wanted to meet you Rehiko." Shota moved closer to him. Shota sat beside him on the bed.
Ryo looked down to his hands. "I wanted to tell you I'm sorry. I thought I you had a girlfriend. If you had explained to me about yourself, I would have understood."
"I was afraid that you wouldn't understand."
"I never thought we were so much alike...” Ryo looked down to his fingers. "At least you've had Baru. You've dated men who desire who you are."
"What are you talking about?"
"I got so jealous of Aoi, because I wondered why I wasn’t good enough." Ryo almost whispered. "I wondered if you met Rehiko-Chan, would it have been any different. Would she have been enough for you? Or did you want a real girl?"
"A real girl?"
"I hated Aoi when you told me about her. I thought she was a real girl." Ryo tried to explain. "Rehiko-Chan has to hide in a man's body. No man’s ever looked at her and told her he loved her."
"That isn't true!"
“Please Aoi, don't lie to me."
"Who says I'm lying?"
"Rehiko Chan had so much hope when the obachan were announced. Then everyone laughed at her. They called her ugly. Even the man she loves more then anything. Sho-chan said she was ugly, so she knew she was." Ryo didn’t want to cry, but he felt a tear fall down his cheek. "But this isn't really about Rehiko, it's about Aoi. I had something I wanted to tell her."
"What did you want to tell me?"
"I just wanted you to know, that I'm sorry that I hurt you." Ryo moved towards the door. "I love you, but that no longer matters. Sayonara Aoi."
Shota got up, he ran to the door, standing between it and Ryo.
"Please Aoi, let me go."
"I can't let you go." Shota confessed.
"I hurt you. I beat you up when I should have listened to you." More tears fell.
"We both did something we aren't proud of." Shota admitted.
"What did you do?"
"Rehiko-Chan, I wanted to tell you how sorry I am." Shota bowed low. "When I laughed at you during the obachan skits, I laughed at the costume they forced you to wear. The real Rehiko-Chan is very beautiful."
"You don't have to lie to me." His voice was hoarse. "Rehiko-Chan knows she's ugly."
"I'm not lying. Rehiko-Chan is like a rare flower." he paused. "Please forgive me."
"Yes, I forgive you." Ryo looked at him.
"Don't ever call yourself ugly." Shota took his hands in his. "We are alike you and I. We both had to hide ourselves."
"No more hiding," Ryo squeezed his hands.
Shota stood with Ryo, waiting. Ryo had always been the one who always made the first move in their relationship. Now he waited. For what?
Shota reminded himself that this wasn't Ryo; it was Rehiko who had never had a boy friend. Who was still terrified of rejection.
Shota let go of Ryo's hands, then he touched Ryo's cheek gently. Then he kissed his lover. He could feel Ryo's lips tremble beneath his.
Shota pulled away from him. "Rehiko, if you don't want to be lovers..."
"Rehiko’s scared." Ryo confessed. "She's never been with a man before."
"But Rehiko won't be with a man, she'll be with a girl." Shota pointed out.
"You're right. Aoi-Chan is a girl." he agreed. "Take me back."
"Silly, I all ready have." Shota told him.
They kissed, this time Ryo didn't pull away from him.
Shota always loved dates with Ryo. This time their date involved breakfast. His lover had put a tablecloth on the small kitchen table. Before, Ryo would have ordered out food for the pair. But Rehiko was different, she liked to cook.
"Rehiko, do you want any help?" Shota asked.
"No, I think I've got it." Ryo had a sing song quality to his voice. A timer pinged. Ryo grabbed pot holders and took something out of the oven. He set it on the stove. He took the muffins out of the container and put them into a bowl with a towel in it. He took it to the table and set it down.
Ryo then took plates filled with scrabbled eggs and hash browns and set them in the two places.
"That looks good.' Shot grabbed a pair of chopsticks and began to eat. "Wow! Why didn't you tell me you were this good at cooking?"
"Girls got to have some secrets." Ryo smiled.
"My mother used to tell me if I ever found a girl that could cook this good I should marry her." Shota smiled.
"Marry?" Ryo repeated.
"Yeah, want to get married?" Shota asked.
"I would love that." Ryo told him.
The door to Maru's bedroom opened. Ryo's roommate stumbled into the kitchen. He stopped at the coffee pot and poured himself a cup. He took a long drink.
"Morning." Maru moaned.
"Guess what Ryu-chan?" Ryo bubbled.
"Rehiko is engaged to Aoi!" He bounced with excitement.
"You're kidding." Maru put down his cup of coffee. "What did you put in the coffee?"
"Nothing!" Shota grabbed Ryo and pulled him onto his lap. "I love Ryo; I'm going to marry him. Right Rehiko?"
"Right Aoi!" With that Ryo kissed Shota.
Shota didn't know what the rest of his life would be like. He only knew that as long as he had Ryo he knew his life would be very happy.