Chapter 5

(Earlier on Friday, April 2nd, After 16:00)

Zero Hr Ch 5“Why do I always feel better when you touch me, Maseo?”

“I can’t really explain that.”

“Why not?”

Maseo looked down at Jin.  “Because you would never believe me.”

“I don’t believe in you anyway.  You’re a figment of my imagination.  Some kind of hallucination brought on by the detox process.”  Jin’s beautiful light brown eyes were warm and soft.  He was very relaxed in his jeans and gray sweater.  He looked at his bare feet, wiggling his toes.

Maseo pushed up his glasses.  “Is that what your doctors say?”

“Yes.  It’s the only explanation.  How else are you able to get into this locked room past all that security?”

They were sitting on the floor at the foot of the unmade bed in the master bedroom suite.  When Maseo had arrived earlier, Jin had been playing his guitar and singing softly in broken English.  He had been playing his favorite Dylan song, something about Johanna.  Maseo had sat down silently, watching him.  After the song had ended, he’d scooted closer and slipped his arm around Jin’s shoulders.

“It has something to do with desperation and need.  I need help and comfort so I constructed you.  As a way to get through this rehabilitation,” Jin continued.  He smiled, seemingly pleased with this explanation.

“Yes, whatever works for you,” said Maseo, nodding, “I’m all for it.”

Jin chuckled then pulled away.  They sat side by side, not touching.

“You remind me of him in a way,” said Jin, “And you both smell really good though I think your scent is even nicer than his.”


“You know.  Ryuichi.”

“I suppose that’s some kind of construction of yours right there.”

“It does reinforce the idea, yes.”  They looked at each other and laughed.  “I mean, if I’m going to make up an angel, he might as well be like Ryuichi, right?”

“Ryuichi is no angel, Jin.”

“No, but I love him all the same.  He’s my personal angel.”  Jin sighed and looked at the door.  They could hear voices outside in the hallway. “So Angelic Version of Ryuichi, tell me why I feel better when you touch me.”

Maseo stared intently at the door then looked at him again.  “Well, as your resident angel construct, part of my job is to make people feel better and give them hope.  And I can do that by touching them.  A single touch can bring a person a feeling of peace and well-being.”

Jin’s eyes were twinkling.  “If that’s true then what’s it like when you make love?”

Maseo blushed.  “I’m a construct.  Constructs don’t make love.”

“Hmmm.  What about when you fall in love?”

“I’m not…in love,” said Maseo.  But he looked at the door again.  They could still hear the voices.

“Go ahead, ask me about him,” said Jin, “I know you want to.”

“Don’t know what you’re talking about,” Maseo muttered.

“Kirishima-san seems fine today.  I talked to him less than two hours ago before they left.  He came to see how I was doing and asked if I needed anything.  He also said everyone was very pleased to see me last night.  He’s wearing a dark gray suit, white shirt, and a solid navy blue tie,” said Jin, reciting everything like a schoolboy.  He’d folded his hands in his lap.

“What do you mean by ‘pleased see you’?” asked Maseo.

“I…I went to Ryuichi last night.  He was standing by the windows, looking out at the view as usual.  You should have seen his eyes when he turned to look at me.”

Maseo smiled to himself then reached over and hugged him.  “I knew it.  How was it?”

It was Jin’s turn to blush.  “It was wonderful.  We went out to dinner and talked and talked.  He has an important meeting tonight but promised he would come straight home.  We’re going to spend the entire weekend together, Maseo.  He’s cancelled all his appointments.”  Jin wiped tears from his eyes.  “I’m so happy.  Thank you for encouraging me to go see him.”

Maseo squeezed him gently.  “You’re welcome.  It looks like your angel construct has done his job.”

“We even,” Jin stopped for a moment then continued on, “We even slept together.  It was difficult but he was so sweet and patient.  And I felt safe for the first time in a long time.”

“That’s good.  Very good.”  Maseo sighed and kissed Jin gently on the top of his head.  “I’m proud of you.”

“And what about you?”

“What about me?”

“You really like Kirishima-san, don’t you?  Admit it.”

“No, I can’t talk about that right now.  Besides, that’s none of your business.”

“Oh, come on!  You asked me all about my feelings for Ryuichi so now it’s time for you to tell me how you feel about Kirishima-san,” said Jin.  He was looking up at Maseo.  “When are you going to do something about it?”

“Do something about it?” Maseo frowned.  “I’m not supposed to do things.  Not really.  I’m an observer and I make people feel better.  I don’t…do things.”

Jin turned to face him, his beautiful eyes wide.  “Really?  So if you’re observing someone and something bad happens, you can’t interfere?”

“I….” Maseo looked down.  A deep seated pain was starting to well up inside.  “I’m not supposed to.”  He looked at Jin.  “That’s why I didn’t come after you when you were kidnapped.  Things happen for a reason, apparently, and part of my job is to step back and let them happen.”  Maseo closed his eyes.  “It’s painful.  Watching people suffer and not helping.  Yet, it’s not in my nature to interfere.  Doing so feels…unnatural, I guess.”  He looked at Jin.  “So I’m always caught between wanting to do something and feeling like I shouldn’t.  I don’t know how I can stand it sometimes.”

Jin laid his hand on Maseo’s arm.  “But if you’re talking to me that means you’ve decided to do something, right?  You’re taking action right now.”

“Yes, but I’m also helping you feel better so it’s okay.”

Jin squeezed Maseo’s arm.  “But you’re here.  With me.  That means you’re having an effect on things.  And you have feelings for Kirishima-san.  If you’re here just to observe and make people feel better why would you develop feelings for him?”

“I don’t know.”  Maseo took a deep breath.  “I’ve been wondering about that myself.”

“You must want him.  Even angels need love.”

Maseo flushed scarlet.  “Want him?  As in make love with him?!  That’s…ridiculous!”

“You’re blushing, Maseo,” said Jin, giggling.

The thought was making him dizzy.  He glanced at the rumpled sheets on the bed.  Jin laughed harder, clapping his hands.  “The wheels of love and desire are turning inside your head, Maseo!  Imagine yourself holding him in your arms, kissing him, and —”

“Stop it!” Maseo yelped, putting his hands over his ears.  He was trembling because the heat was rising in his body then he dropped his hands and turned suddenly, staring at the bedroom door.

The voices were right outside in the hallway.

“It’s Tsuji-san.  He’s going to accompany me on a walk so I can get some exercise.  You should leave, Maseo.  It’s a good thing no one can hear our conversations when you’re around,” said Jin.   He looked at him, eyes slightly wide.  “You’ll come back, won’t you?  Even if I’m all better now?”

“I promise.  I always come back to the people I care about.”

Jin swallowed.  “Okay.  I believe you.  Bye now.”

Maseo leaned over and gave him one last squeeze then stood up.  He waved at him and then turned away.  He was gone by the time Tsuji rapped on the door and let himself in.

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