Characters: Dee, Ryo.
Setting: After Vol. 7.
Summary: There’s no place Dee and Ryo would rather be than right where they are, vacationing on a tropical island.
Word Count: 1955
Written For: Jae’s Monthly Drabble Challenge 162 - Beach, Cocktail, Sunglasses, Swim, Tan Line(s).
Disclaimer: I don’t own FAKE, or the characters. They belong to the wonderful Sanami Matoh.
The white sand of the beach shimmered like crushed diamonds beneath a clear blue sky, while the sun’s rays refracted dazzlingly from the surface of the turquoise sea. The whole scene reminded Dee of the too good to be true, most likely airbrushed photos in travel magazines and brochures, offering ideal vacation destinations that never lived up to your expectations, only none of this was faked; it was one hundred percent natural perfection, all his dreams made real. He could only marvel that such places actually did exist in the real world.
“This,” he said with a contented sigh as he lay back in his beach chair, soaking up the warmth as if sunshine was going out of fashion, “is the life for me.”
“Mm,” Ryo agreed from where he was lounging next to his partner. “Life doesn’t get much better than this, that’s for sure. Just sun, sand, sea, and relaxation; no traffic, no work, nowhere we have to be, no time clock to punch… As vacations go, this is pretty much perfect.” A dreamy smile curved his lips as he considered how lucky they were to be here on this tropical island, far from the noise, bustle, and pollution of New York. Everyone back at the precinct must be so envious… He’d have to remember to send their friends a suitably idyllic postcard, just to remind them where he and Dee were and where the rest of them could only wish they could be.
“Yeah, our own little piece of paradise where no one’s in a hurry, and everybody’s just livin’ it up on island time. Y’know, maybe we should think about ditchin’ New York for good, move down here to the tropics, live the beach bum life for all we’re worth. Whaddaya think?”
Beside Dee, Ryo chuckled, turning his head to peer lazily at his lover through the dark lenses of his sunglasses. “And what exactly would we live on? There are expenses even in paradise, you know; our savings wouldn’t last forever.”
Dee shrugged idly, completely unconcerned. “Ah, that’s easy; we could pick up some bar work whenever we got low on cash, or wait tables in one of the restaurants. We wouldn’t need all that much money anyway; rent’s way lower here than in New York, it’s always warm so there’d be no heatin’ bills, no need for a car either. We could spend our days lazin’ on the beach, go fishin’ in the early mornin’ and roast our catch over an open fire…” he trailed off, yawning, the fresh air and the slow pace of life in the small island resort making him pleasantly relaxed and sleepy. This beat napping at his desk any day of the week.
Against his better judgement, Ryo allowed himself to fantasise about the tropical idyll his lover was describing; he had to admit Dee painted a tempting picture, but…
“Wonderful as it sounds, we’d probably be bored stiff inside a couple of months. Besides, the weather isn’t always this good, what about hurricanes and tropical storms? Days of torrential rain and gale force winds, storm surges washing away everything in their path… I’d just as soon not have to cope with that kind of extreme weather if I don’t have to.”
Glancing Ryo’s way, Dee pulled a disgusted face. “Why do ya always have to trample on my beautiful fantasies with your logic and common sense?”
“Someone has to keep you grounded or you’d just float away,” Ryo teased. “It’s a lovely dream, Dee, and while we’re here we should make the most of every moment, but if we lived here all the time the novelty would eventually wear off and the dream would lose its shine. We’d stop appreciating all the things that make this place so magical and it would become mundane, just our everyday world.”
“Damn you for always bein’ right,” Dee griped good-naturedly.
“Sorry I burst your happy bubble, but one of us has to be practical, and it’s never going to be you.” Ryo could be a dreamer too, but he still managed to keep his feet firmly on the ground while Dee tended to let himself get swept away by his flights of fancy.
“Guess it’s a good thing I have you to keep me in check,” Dee said through another yawn. He fell silent for a bit then, eyes hidden behind his shades so that Ryo couldn’t tell whether his partner was still awake or had dozed off, lulled by the warmth of the sun and the gentle shush of the sea. Finally Dee stirred and sat up, feet on the ground and stretching luxuriously, like a cat waking from a nap.
Ryo peered over the tops of his sunglasses to better appreciate the view, enjoying the way his lover’s muscles flexed beneath lightly tanned, olive-tinged skin. He was so absorbed that when Dee spoke again, he almost didn’t hear.
“Think I’ll take a swim to cool off a bit. You comin’?”
Ryo dragged himself out of his reverie and smiled. “Sure, why not?” Taking off his sunglasses and setting them aside, he scrambled to his feet, stripping off the loose t-shirt he was wearing, noticing as he did so that despite frequent applications of sunscreen, even after just two days on the island he was already developing tan lines on his upper arms where the short sleeves ended. He hadn’t wanted to expose too much of his body to the strong sunlight right away, and unlike Dee he wasn’t entirely comfortable with wandering around just one step away from being naked, but maybe Dee had the right idea wearing nothing but his trunks; he at least was getting an even tan.
Dropping the t-shirt on his beach chair, Ryo followed Dee down across the hot sand to the water’s edge, where the sea lapped at his toes, the water feeling refreshingly cool in comparison to the hot, moist tropical air. He barely hesitated before wading out into deeper water, relishing the contrast in temperature.
As soon as the water was chest deep, Ryo kicked off the bottom and with strong, steady stokes swam towards the far side of the bay. The tide was coming in so the water was at its deepest and there was no chance of getting accidentally swept out to sea. Not that the currents here were at all dangerous in good weather. During a storm it would be a different matter, but this wasn’t storm season; the water was calm, stirred only by the gentle tidal swell.
Catching up to Dee, who was by now floating on his back and drifting slowly towards the beach, Ryo trod water alongside him.
“If you’re not careful you’ll wind up running aground,” he joked.
“Doesn’t matter; I can always swim back out again.” Dee idly flicked water in his partner’s face and when Ryo retaliated, he rolled upright, flashing a wicked grin at his baby. “Oh, so you wanna play, do ya?” He scooped a handful of water in Ryo’s direction.
“Hey! You started it!” Ryo protested indignantly. Nevertheless, as the water fight got underway he gave as good as he got, until Dee abruptly dove beneath the water and before Ryo knew what was happening, pulled his lover’s trunks halfway down. “DEE! What’re you doing?”
Surfacing well out of reach, Dee laughed and crowed, “Gotcha!” From his satisfied smirk he was obviously pleased with himself.
“That was so not fair!” Blushing furiously, Ryo tugged his trunks back up one handed.
“It’s fine, babe; not like anyone could see anything.”
“That’s not the point! What if they’d come right off and floated away? I’d have been stranded out here stark naked!”
“Aw, c’mon; don’t be mad at me! I would’ve never let that happen. I was just messin’ with ya; we’re supposed to be havin’ fun!”
“That wasn’t what I’d call fun so you’d better not do it again.”
“Okay, I won’t, I promise. Am I forgiven?” Dee swam closer, right into Ryo’s personal space.
Ryo sighed. “I suppose so.” How could he possibly stay mad at his lover when Dee was looking at him that way, full of love and desire?
“Good.” Tugging Ryo against him with one arm looped around his baby’s waist, Dee kissed him, long and slow.
There was no knowing how long the kiss might have continued if they hadn’t forgotten where they were and sunk beneath the water. Breaking apart, they resurfaced, spluttering.
“Okay, that might not have been one of my better ideas,” Dee gasped. “It always looks so hot in the movies, but I guess it might’ve worked better in shallower water.”
Ryo slicked dripping wet hair back from his face, laughing. “We’ll just have to remember that in future if we want to avoid drowning.”
“Yeah, that would put a serious crimp in our vacation,” Dee agreed.
They stayed in the water for a while longer, alternating between swimming further out and then floating back towards shore again, until at last they let the tide carry them into the shallows. Wading ashore and making their way up the beach to where they’d left their towels, they dried themselves off and helped each other apply a fresh coating of sunscreen, then flopped back into their chairs and put their feet up, right back where they’d been an hour ago.
Silence reigned as they relaxed.
This time Ryo was the first to speak. “I think I need a drink. All that salt in the water; feels like I swallowed half the sea when you almost drowned us.”
“Want me to go get you something?” Dee pushed himself up on one elbow.
“No, it’s okay, I’ll go. You want anything?”
“Yeah, sure; a drink would be good. Gotta stay hydrated in this heat.”
“I’m not fussy, anything tall and cold will do me just fine; you choose, you know what I like.”
“Okay. I’ll be right back.”
Dee watched Ryo amble unhurriedly away towards a kiosk selling refreshments, his damp trunks clinging enticingly to his ass. “Hope he gets me somethin’ with plenty of ice in it,” he murmured to himself. “’Cause I’m gonna need it to cool off from that view.”
When Ryo came back, he was carrying two tall, frosty glasses of what looked like some kind of fruit juice, adorned with crushed ice, chunks of fruit on skewers, and fancy cocktail umbrellas.
“Here you go.” He handed one glass to Dee and settled back onto his beach chair, sipping his own drink through a straw.
“Not quite what I was expectin’,” Dee commented, searching through the decorative paraphernalia until he located the straw.
“You said tall and cold,” Ryo reminded him. “This is as tall and as cold as the drinks here get. I could’ve got us sodas, but we can get those back home. When in the tropics…”
Dee slurped his drink, fruity and refreshing. “No, this is great, just the decorations took me by surprise is all. They’re a bit… over the top. Cocktail umbrellas?”
Ryo laughed. “I know! How much more tropical can you get? JJ would be in heaven.”
“He’d have cocktail umbrellas in his beer given half a chance.”
“Maybe these umbrellas are to keep the ice from melting too quickly in the sun,” Ryo mused.
“Could be.” Dee rested the bottom on his glass against his belly, almost shivering at the deliciously icy chill. He smiled dreamily; they still had another twelve days of this bliss before they’d have to catch their flight home. Yep, he’d been right, he decided as he snagged the skewer of fruit from his glass and bit off an icy chunk of sweet mango; life really didn’t get any better than this.