Title: The City And The Stars
Characters: Ryo, Dee
Setting: After Vol. 7.
Summary: Night comes early in winter, but sometimes the darkness brings unexpected beauty.
Word Count: 621
Written For: My own prompt ‘FAKE, Dee/Ryo, The City And The Stars,’ at fic_promptly.
Disclaimer: I don’t own FAKE, or the characters. They belong to the wonderful Sanami Matoh.
Night came early to New York in winter, but in the centre of the bustling metropolis it never really got dark, the lights of the city that never slept drowning out the stars. New Yorkers were used to it, even relished it, but sometimes Ryo wished he could really see the night sky.
Leaning on the wall that surrounded the flat roof of the precinct house, he looked out across the city, a mass of multicoloured lights twinkling as far as he could see. The bridges that joined Manhattan to the shore would look like strings of fairy lights, if they were visible from here; as it was, all he could really see were buildings lit from within, and the endless streams of headlights along the roadways. It was beautiful, even comforting in a way, but tonight it made him feel a little lonely.
“There you are,” a voice came from behind him. “I’ve been looking everywhere for ya, what’re ya doin’ up here in the cold?”
“Just looking at the lights.” Ryo didn’t bother to turn, just stayed where he was, staring out into the night. He felt rather than saw Dee coming to lean against the wall beside him.
“It’s pretty.” Ryo could hear the smile in Dee’s voice.
“Of course. Why wouldn’t I be?”
“I don’t know. You’ve just seemed a little… distant all day.”
“Don’t apologise, dope. If something was bothering ya, you’d tell me, right?”
Ryo looked at his partner then, a faint smile curving his lips. “There’s nothing wrong really, I just feel… I don’t know, kinda restless.”
“Because of this case?”
“I don’t know. Maybe.”
They were silent for a while, shoulder to shoulder, both lost in thought. Finally, Dee nudged Ryo. “We should probably get back inside, it’s getting colder.”
But before either of them could move, the lights of the city suddenly blinked out, plunging them into darkness. Dee sighed. “Oh great, that’s all we need. Brownout.”
Ryo reached out blindly, tugging at Dee’s sleeve. “Dee, look!” He sounded almost breathless.
“What? Can’t see much of anything with the lights out.”
“The sky, Dee, look at the sky!”
Dee tipped his head back, looking up at a black velvet expanse scattered with a myriad sparkling diamond stars, and his breath caught in wonder. With not a wisp of cloud to obscure the view, the cold, crisp winter air seemed to make everything sharper, clearer, as if the stars were almost close enough to touch.
“It’s beautiful!” Dee’s voice was barely more than a whisper.
“We almost never get to see the stars; sometimes I miss that.”
Side by side, they leaned back against the wall, just staring up at the night sky, transfixed with wonder, and there they remained, drinking in the sight, until at last the power came back on nearly an hour later.
Straightening up, they eased the kinks out of their necks and backs and looked at each other.
“Pretty damned amazing!” Dee’s teeth flashed white in one of his trademark wide grins.
Ryo nodded agreement. “Incredible.”
As they made their way back inside, Ryo’s blue mood had completely vanished. His eyes were sparkling as if the light from the stars had settled in them and there was a lightness to his step; he felt reenergized.
Even though they couldn’t often see them, the stars were always there, shining down on them from above; that simple truth felt to Ryo like a revelation, and it lifted a weight from his heart he hadn’t known was there. He squeezed Dee’s hand, glad that he’d been able to share such a magical sight with the man he loved. It was something neither of them would ever forget.