Characters: Dee, Ryo, Mother.
Setting: Vol. 5, Act 14, Vol. 2, Act 6, and most of Vol. 1.
Summary: Ryo is so much stronger, in all the ways that truly matter, than Dee will ever be.
Word Count: 500
Written For: Challenge 185: Strong at anythingdrabble.
Disclaimer: I don’t own FAKE, or the characters.
Dee had always thought of himself as a strong person, not just physically but mentally and emotionally too, and yet Ryo, in his quiet and unassuming way, put him to shame.
Within hours of their first meeting, Ryo had taken an orphaned street kid into his home, committing himself to the responsibilities of single parenthood without a second thought, something Dee knew he couldn’t have done; he wasn’t that selfless. Then Ryo had temporarily taken in a second kid, to protect her from a criminal whose pocket she’d picked, and as if that weren’t enough, he’d used a chunk of his savings to put up bail for the girl’s father, just so he could die at home with her instead of in a prison hospital.
When it came to strength of character, no one had more than Ryo Maclean, and now he was proving it yet again.
Last night he’d been a wreck. Learning the truth about his parents’ deaths, and meeting one of the men responsible for killing them, had shattered him to the point where Dee scarcely recognised his normally calm and controlled partner. It hadn’t just been the tears and the futile rage, but the totally out of character way he’d practically thrown himself at Dee, offering his body to use however Dee wanted. That had been nothing short of terrifying, and yet, after taking a shower he’d gotten himself together again, his normal self seemingly reasserted.
If you didn’t look too deeply into his eyes you’d think he was perfectly fine, but Dee knew better. He could see the shadows that still lingered in the depths of Ryo’s soul, haunting him with truths that might have been best left undiscovered, but only those who knew Ryo best would notice that his smile was perhaps a little forced, and his shoulders bowed slightly beneath an invisible weight. Soon even those tiny tell-tale signs would be gone, and it would be as if the last forty-eight hours or so had never happened.
‘So much for me bein’ the strong one,’ Dee thought ruefully. After Mother had been injured in the explosion at the orphanage, he’d been destroyed. It had taken him weeks to get back on an even keel, something he wasn’t sure he could have done without Ryo’s constant, uncomplaining support and understanding, yet Mother had only been injured! It had been touch and go for a while, but she’d made a full recovery. In fact, she’d been back on her feet and helping to set the orphanage up in new premises while Dee had still been struggling to regain his balance.
Mother was like Ryo, a calm and quiet presence who stabilised everyone around her. She had the same steadfast inner strength that Dee’s partner did and maybe that was part of what drew him to Ryo, because it was something he lacked in himself.
‘Guess I’ve never been as strong as I thought. My strength has always come from the people I love the most.’