Setting: Before the manga.
Summary: Ryo wouldn’t trade his parents’ bed for anything.
Word Count: 977
Written For: Prompt: #014 - Secondhand at fandomweekly.
Disclaimer: I don’t own FAKE, or the characters. They belong to the wonderful Sanami Matoh.
The bed had belonged to his parents; they’d bought it brand new shortly after their wedding, a new bed for their new home and their new life together. Some of Ryo’s earliest and fondest memories revolved around that bed; finding safety and security there between his parents after having a nightmare, and all the birthdays and Christmases that had started with the three of them sharing the warmth and being a family.
After his parents were murdered, when he’d moved in with his aunt and uncle, he’d had to sell most of their furniture; there hadn’t been enough space in his aunt’s small house, and storage fees had been too high. He’d kept their bed though, unable to face the thought of getting rid of it. Sleeping in it made him feel closer to them even though they were gone.
When he moved out of his aunt’s house, the bed had gone with him, first to a small, cramped apartment where its king-sized bulk barely fit, and then when he started work as a uniformed police officer, to a slightly bigger one-bedroom just outside the precinct he was assigned to. Although it was several years older than him, it was so much a part of his life now it was more like a member of the family than mere furniture.
A girl he briefly dated asked him once why he didn’t get a new bed instead of making do with a crummy old second-hand one. He’d tried to explain how much it meant to him, but she hadn’t understood and they’d split up shortly after, at least partly because of his refusal to replace it. He never seemed to have much luck when it came to dating, and to be honest, he didn’t miss the girl; he couldn’t even remember her name or what she’d looked like now, even though it had only been about six years ago and he usually had a very good memory for names and faces. He suspected that he would have missed his bed far more if he’d been forced to part with it, but given the choice between some woman he barely knew and his bed, the bed would win every time.
That was the past though; now his life has taken another turn. He’s newly promoted to detective and has been assigned to the 27th Precinct in Manhattan, necessitating another move because the commute would be ridiculous from where he’d been living in Flatbush. His new place is a two-bedroom apartment on the top floor of an old brownstone in the Bronx. It’s a pretty nice area and he feels as if he’s going up in the world. New job, new home, but the same old bed; nowhere could ever feel like home without it.
The movers haul everything that won’t fit in the elevator up the stairs, bitching about it the whole way, but finally all his furniture and the mountain of boxes containing his other belongings are in the new apartment. With the movers paid off and gone, he’s left alone to sort himself out, decide what to put where, and unpack everything he spent ages packing not so long ago. It’s a daunting task, and one he doesn’t feel up to tackling right at this moment.
His parents’ bed is now in the spacious front room that’s to be his bedroom, but there’s a problem; it’s been damaged in transit. It’s not serious damage, thank goodness, but one of the legs has come off the base and the nut and bolt by which it had been attached are now missing. It’s late and Ryo is worn out from the long day; he’s been up since before first light and now it’s evening and he’s barely sat down except for the drive over here. Aside from the absolute essentials, he’d been intending to leave unpacking and arranging furniture until morning; he’ll be refreshed and ready for anything after a good night’s sleep. But he’ll be sleeping on the floor if he doesn’t fix his bed right away, and he doesn’t fancy a night on hard floorboards, not when he has a well-sprung and very comfortable bed.
Wearily he locates his toolbox among all the piles of boxes and digs through it for what he needs. He knows he’s got some spare bolts in there and just hopes he can find one that fits; even a temporary repair is better than nothing. He finds one that will work for now, although it’s a bit too long and the only nut he has that will fit it is a wing nut that he doesn’t remember ever seeing before. Toolboxes seem to breed such things, so he just shrugs and sets to work. Tomorrow, he’ll hit the hardware store and get a proper replacement, plus a few spares just to be on the safe side. All that matters now is that he can fix the leg and spend his first night in his new home snug in the familiar old bed.
No matter where he goes in his life, Ryo knows his parents’ bed will always go with him. It’s the one thing he owns that is absolutely irreplaceable, even more so than his photographs of his family, because he knows his aunt has copies of all of them, and anyway, he keeps the negatives stored with his other valuables in a safety deposit box at the bank these days. The bed is the embodiment of home; even now he’s grown up, sleeping in it gives him a sense of security and he never sleeps as well anywhere else.
As he sets to work lovingly fixing the old bed, Ryo can’t keep from smiling; he’s looking forward to being able to climb beneath the covers and relax. He thinks that if his parents are watching over him from heaven, they’d approve.