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Written for the kkmvday exchange over at livejournal.

Title: Messy Faces and the Invention of Hot Chocolate
Name of Recipient: pollinia
Pairings/Characters: Shori/Murata (or, in other words, the pairing that never crossed my mind until I got the prompt)
Warnings: None.
Disclaimer: Not mine, obviously.
Original Request: Shori/Murata, wherein there is cocoa and a snowstorm.
Prompts: rhythm, complacent, genius
Summary: In which they finally come together.
A/N : Happy Valentine's Day! Well actually, I guess that was a while back. I kept waiting for the reveal, but I guess it’s not gonna happen? So I decided to go ahead and post. (if you see any mistakes, please point them out!)

Murata liked to think that there was a good chance things could work out. He's not as sure about it as he'd like to be, but sure enough to give it a shot. He's been thinking about it for a while now, how they fit together like just the right pieces of a puzzle. Shori's a worrier, especially when he's trying to act like he's not, and Murata has an experienced soul.

There's been this pattern. This rhythm of sorts. To these feelings: want, love, lust. Avoid, avoid, avoid. Never has this been the sage's style, but he knew this time would be different. For a while now they've had a beat, a song between them that crescendos and crashed and could be loud enough to shake the world if anyone else could hear it. There's a little something missing though. An extra measure that would really make things fit, make them easy and right and the way they should be. Personally, the sage thought it might have something to do with the way Shori denied, denied, denied.

"What about Yuuri and the others?" Shori warmed his hands with his breath, a so far fruitless attempt.

Murata shuffled through the cabinets. He was just a bit too stubborn to call the maids back in after making such a big show of sending them away. He shoved away odd dry meats and spice jars, rolling his eyes at the absolute clutter the servants are keeping it in. "Hmm?" he asked, absent-mindedly. "They should be in the next kingdom already. I doubt they're even getting a cool breeze."

"And we're stuck here in a snowstorm." Shori muttered. "Are you sure we can't make it back to the temple?" He was petulant, which Murata found endearing.

"I guess next time you decide to visit I should check Yuuri's schedule, right?" Murata laughed. His fingers grasped his sought for object and he cheered. "Got it!"

Shaking the dark canister in his hands, Murata smirked at Shori's blank look and explained, "It's Shin Mazoku's version of cocoa. Grab a pot."

"Cocoa?" Shori echoed. He fumbled with frozen fingers to pull a pot off the kitchen-ware rack. "Mmm-hmm." Murata continued, tapping his fingers on his chin. "You know, now that I think about it, I seem to remember being the…inspiration behind its invention. It was my idea to harvest the choko tree."

"And I bet everyone thought that was pretty smart." The taller male commented.

"What can I say?" Murata asked, smirking. "I am a genius."

"You're not a genius." Shori complained, glaring at the kitchen appliance he'd set the pot on. It looked eerily like the stoves on Earth, but was about thirty times more difficult to use. No doubt it was an invention of Anissina. When the flame finally flickered, Shori glanced at Murata. "You're just a conceited jerk who knows more than he should."

"I'm not conceited." Murata laughed. "I'm confident. And there's nothing wrong with that, especially if I'm right, which I am. I mean, it's not conceited for me to say that you want to sleep with me, right? Because you do." Shori's face blushed a deep scarlet from the tips of his ears to the tip of his nose.

"I knew it." Murata said smugly.

Of course, that's where things got awkward. And despite all his teasing, it'd never been the outcome Murata was looking for. It was supposed to be complacent and comfortable between the two of them. By the time the milk is bubbling away on the stove, Shori still hadn't looked anywhere other than a completely boring brick in the kitchen wall.

But today would be different. Shori was there and finally, through Murata's brilliant planning and a massive amount of sheer luck, they're alone. And today would be their new beginning.

Murata scooped some powder into mugs, enjoying the fierce look of over-exaggerated concentration on the taller man's face as he poured the boiling milk. "To us." Murata said, cheerfully, and they clinked mugs in a small toast.

The cocoa was thick and warm, a liquid chocolate sweet to the tongue and good for cold cheeks. Good for sipping to avoid conversation. Good for gazing into to avoid looking at the person next to you.

Shori, serious big brother Shori, sipped his cocoa with the same expression that Murata had always imagined he'd wear post-sex. The great sage gulped a mouthful of steaming liquid for distraction.

"You've got something…" Shori said suddenly, gesturing vaguely.

"Huh?" Murata asked. He wiped at his cheek.

"No, its…" Shori's hands were large and rougher than they looked. The pads of his fingers trailed down Murata's face. Behind them was a mess of invisible heat. Shocking heat, burning heat, freezing heat that expanded and multiplied and grew until Murata could feel the tingle all the way down to his toes. When those hot hands fell away with a smudge of chocolate, they left behind a messy mass of want.

"You've got something on your face, too." Murata said, before he could even start thinking again.

Shori froze. "Yeah?" The sage grabbed his hand before it lifted. "Let me." He ordered.

Then he licked Shori's lips. Licked them and kissed them and refused to breathe until he felt Shori kissing back. It was the movement of Shori's fingers threading through his hair that created the thud and thump of his heart, like the beat of a drum.


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