Takashi Sui glanced around once more. He’d been sure that he had heard soldiers but they were nowhere in sight. Stepping from the shadow of an old building in Ward 2 of the Kanto region, Sui made his way through the desecrated temple. The ruins appalled him but that did little to halt his progress. He had no time to mourn the loss of his country. He needed to return to the ‘Burrow’ before night set; and he was currently being tracked by some livid foreigners. That was to be expected, considering the contraband that currently sat tucked in his right breast pocket. He had been exiting the black market in Ward 4, having just purchased a copy of Egoist’s new CD, Limelight, when he’d bumped in to the Monitors. It was a careless mistake but luckily they seemed more distracted by the fact that they’d been touched by a Jap than by the fact that he was leaving an illegal selling ground.
Gunshots rang in the distance and Sui quickly ducked around an old shrine, bumping in to a young boy with emerald green eyes. The boy hit the ground with a soft thud and a gasp of air hissed through clenched teeth. Sui held out a hand in apology and was shocked when the boy smacked his hand away and quickly snatched up the small case off the ground. Spotting the Egoist CD now clenched in the boy’s hands, Sui reached out in anticipation.
“What?” The kid’s voice was warm like caramel and Sui couldn’t muster any anger towards the child who was now clutching the CD as if his life depended on it.
“Can I have that back?”
“Back? This is mine.” He chimed, the brisk air causing puffs of breath in front of his face. Sui scowled slightly, trying to decide how to handle the little thief and then sighed.
“Look kid. I just want the CD back. I went through a lot of trouble to get that. If you need money for food then I will give you some.” Sui said, his eyes softening as he took in tattered clothes and mused hair. “I know times are tough so I’m not angry. I just want it back.”
The child before him looked offended before scoffing, “Kid? I’m 15 years old and this CD is mine, old man.”
Sui’s expression hardened and he reached up to his pocket, feeling the lining of his disk. Slightly flustered about the mistake, Sui bowed his head. “I apologize. I thought that was the one I just purchased.”
Thinking the boy would be angry, Sui was shocked when his face lit up. “Are you a fan of Egoist?”
Sui couldn’t help but answer him honestly, considering his eyes were looking at him with such earnest hope and excitement. “I am. You too?”
The boy glanced away at the setting sun and looked back to Sui in consideration. “Come to the old tavern in Ward 5. I’ll be waiting.” He chimed before running in the opposite direction. Sui stood rooted to the ground in surprise. He’d not only confessed to being a fan of Egoist, the underground rock group that was heading the Korean Resistance, he’d told a complete stranger who, for all Sui knew, was a spy for the Koreans. Sighing at his own naivety, Sui turned towards the ‘Burrow’ before pausing. He couldn’t help but wonder if this was all a trap to get the resistance under control but Sui was compelled to go to the Tavern and meet with the young man.
Something about him tugged at Sui’s heart, and other places. Making the decision to risk everything for one night, Sui began walking in the direction of Ward 5. The trip was nerve-wrecking and made him a little sick to his stomach but he kept his feet moving, one after another. Before he knew it, the Tavern was in site. What caught Sui’s attention was the soft sound of music filtering through the air. Sui went to open the door only to find it locked. Wondering what he’d expected, he turned to walk away and spotted an older gentleman sitting near the end of a dark alley. He approached the man cautiously and watched as the guy pointed down the dark alley.
Sui glanced down the alleyway and spotted a small door. Walking slowly down the path, Sui kept glancing back to make sure that he hadn’t been trapped by soldiers. As he approached the door, it creaked open and another gentleman waved him in. Sui hesitated only momentarily before walking into the unlit building. The man immediately began patting him down and pulled out the Egoist CD as he reached his breast pocket. Sui panicked. It was all over. Or so he thought. He was shocked when the man handed it back and motioned him to the opposite wall where another door laid waiting. Sui forced himself forward and turned the handle. The second the door cracked, he knew that it had been worth the risk. Music filtered from the room, filling his pounding ears. Walking down a flight of stairs and turning into a large underground club, Sui spotted hundreds of people now focused on the empty stage before them. Music was filtering through speakers but no band was playing. Sui walked closer, his hesitation all but gone, and received the true reward for his efforts.
The speakers died out and several musicians filtered onto the stage, taking up their positions at various instruments. The band started playing and Sui immediately recognized the song, Luminescence, Egoist’s first single back in 2022. What happened next turned Sui’s life upside down. The young boy from this morning, the one with the soothing voice of an angel, walked onto the stage to an uproar of cheers. His appearance had changed quite a bit, his earlier mused black hair now brown with blond highlights, but his emerald eyes still pierced through Sui like nothing he’d ever experienced. The boy took the microphone into his hands and grinned as the fans went wild.
“Thank you all for coming tonight. My name is Yuki and we are Egoist.” He said confidently, the timid boy from earlier being crushed beneath the weight of this young man. He closed his eyes and the sound that filtered from his mouth left the crowd staring in awe. Their CD’s were amazing, there was no doubting that, but them in concert was divine. Sui stood in the center of the room, all attention focused on the boy who had brought him here. This was Egoist, and that boy was the salvation that Sui had been searching for.
As the concert ended, Sui made his way to a small bar and sat down, hoping that he might catch Yuki on his way off stage. Instead, a young girl approached him, hands firmly on her hips. “Yuki-sama wishes to speak with you.”
Sui stood and followed the girl through a door in the corner of the concert hall and into a small room where the band now sat scattered. The girl motioned for Sui to sit and he did as she walked into another room and returned moments later, Egoist’s lead singer close in hand.
“You came?” He chimed cheerfully, his voice that of a child’s once again.
Sui nodded as Yuki rushed over and held out his hand in greeting. “Satou Yuki. 15 years old. Egoist’s lead singer. Aries.” He rambled off as Sui took his hand.
“Takashi Sui. 18 years old. Leo.” Sui replied, his body responding in unprecedented ways to Yuki’s touch.
“You forgot to say Shade’s bass guitarist, right?” Yuki asked and Sui stared in surprise. Yuki quickly answered his questions and quenched his doubt by continuing, “I was a huge fan before you guys broke up. I went to your last concert before the invasion”.
Sui watched as Yuki reached into his back pocket and pulled out one of Shade’s old CDs. “Could I get an autograph?” Yuki chimed and the guys in the room burst into laughter. Yuki’s face turned beet red and he plopped onto the couch across from Sui.
“Sorry about our kid here. He’s been a fan of your band since your debut.” One guy, about 20 from the looks of it, mumbled as he sipped a beer.
“You’re supposed to be the star here, Yuki.” Another older gentleman, in his late 20s, scolded.
Yuki pouted and Sui couldn’t resist the urge to laugh. The sound startled Yuki but it seemed to please him more than Sui could understand. Reaching across the gap, Sui took the CD from Yuki and grabbed a sharpie off the side table. Signing his name on the inside of the cover, Sui handed the disc back to Yuki and winked.
“I figured I’d suck up a little. Will you sign my disc for me?” He asked as he retrieved Egoist’s new CD from his breast pocket. Yuki smiled brightly and took the case, signing his name in return.
The oldest of the band mates walked over and handed Sui a beer. “Have a beer with us. If you’ve caught the attention of our little devil, you’re going to need it.”
Everyone laughed lightly and Yuki scowled before storming into the room he had come from. The guys went silent and glanced from one to another. The eldest motioned for Sui to follow Yuki and Sui stood and closed the distance to the door before knocking once and opening the door.
Yuki lay draped across a round bed in the center of the room, his face hidden by pillows. Sui pushed the door closed and approached the bed slowly before taking a seat on the floor beside Yuki. “Why are you so upset? I’m sure they didn’t mean anything by it.”
“They’re right. I’m extremely difficult to deal with so it’s hard for me to make friends. Everyone who knows Egoist sees me as their lead singer and nothing else, but that’s not even the real me. I only started singing with the group to…” Yuki trailed off.
Concerned by the sudden silence, Sui pushed himself off the ground and moved to sit in the small space on the edge of the bed beside Yuki. “To what?”
Perhaps he’d been expecting him to say something about meeting him, or perhaps not, but the answer that came left Sui panicked to try and comfort the boy. “To replace my brother, Sota. We’re twins with completely different personalities. Sota has always been cocky and confident while I’ve always been mild mannered and meek. I merely lucked out with the fact that my personality changes when I go on stage. Otherwise, I’d never be able to sing in front of all those people.”
“Where’s your brother?” Sui asked, although the answer was evident by the tears in the boy’s eyes.
“Killed by the Koreans two years ago.”
Sui brushed hair out of Yuki’s face and pulled him up gently, wrapping his arms around him. “I’m sorry about your brother.”
Yuki cried in silence for what seemed like hours, his shaking body the only indication of his pain, and then leaned back with a small smile. “This wasn’t how I’d imagined meeting Shade’s infamous Sui.”
Sui laughed before leaning forward and pressing a gentle kiss on Yuki’s moist cheek. Yuki’s face flushed and his grip tightened on Sui’s shirt. “Will you kiss me? A real kiss?”
Sui nodded as he closed the distance and covered Yuki’s mouth with his own. Yuki hesitated, unsure of what happened next. Sui grinned into the kiss and used his tongue to nudge Yuki’s lips apart. Obeying Sui’s will, Yuki was rewarded as Sui slipped his tongue in and gently massaged, a sensation unknown to the innocent teen. Pulling back slowly to allow some time for restraint to take control, Sui watched Yuki’s face play several emotions. His face was flustered, his lips still moist from their mutual affirmation of feelings. Yuki’s breath came in short pants and he bit his bottom lip.
“Again?” He whimpered and Sui’s hope of restraint collapsed. Wrapping his arm around Yuki’s back, Sui leaned him back gently, and pulled himself to cover his body. Closing the distance once more, he captured Yuki’s mouth in a kiss so demanding, Yuki trembled against him. Yuki, panicked by the fierceness, pushed against Sui’s chest only for Sui to intertwine his fingers into Yuki’s, sliding his hands above his head where he held them hostage. Yuki’s body relaxed momentarily, only to tense up once again as Sui slid one hand down to tease Yuki’s nipples through the thin material of his shirt. Yuki turned his head, breaking the kiss, and was shocked as a moan escaped his parted lips.
He hadn’t expected the sound and it was clear that Sui hadn’t either. “Can I keep going?” Sui begged, his voice shaking in the heat of passion. Yuki hesitated once more and then gave a small nod. Sui moved his hand over the material of Yuki’s pants and slowly pulled the zipper down only to be interrupted by a soft knock on the door.
“I hate to interrupt.” Came the voice of Yuki’s eldest band mate, “but it’s time for our next set.”
Yuki sighed in frustration and Sui growled deep in his chest. “Any chance I can see you again tomorrow?”
Yuki shook his head and smirked. “Who said you get to leave? I finally have Shade’s star to myself, I won’t let you go.” He remarked as his stage personality emerged and he captured Sui lips in another kiss.