Characters: Bikky, Ryo, Dee.
Setting: After Like Like Love
Summary: Bikky’s home for the holidays and seeing his new room for the first time.
Word Count: 977
Written For: My own prompt ‘FAKE, Bikky, Finding his old skates packed away,’ at fic_promptly.
Disclaimer: I don’t own FAKE, or the characters. They belong to the wonderful Sanami Matoh.
Bikky was home for the holidays, the first time he’d been back in New York since starting college in the fall. He’d had other options for the mid-winter break, but despite having to get used to the cold again, there was nowhere he’d sooner be over Christmas than with his foster father and his best girl, even if that meant being around his nemesis too.
This was the first time he’d seen the perv’s new, improved apartment since work on it had been completed and he was grudgingly impressed. It looked great, and as per his demands, he had his own room, complete with en suite bathroom, at the opposite end of the apartment to the room Ryo shared with Dee. It was no cramped cubbyhole either, although because of the stacked boxes that took up a quarter of the space, it looked smaller than it was.
The new bed, a luxurious double to replace his cramped childhood bed, was impressive too, and much appreciated, considering that Bikky hadn’t stopped growing yet, but those boxes would have to go.
“What do you think?” Ryo asked, sounding a little nervous.
“Awesome! But what’s with the boxes? Is the perv usin’ my room as storage space?”
Ryo laughed. “Those are all your things from our old place. I figured you’d want to sort through them yourself; I have no idea what you’ll want to keep. The closets are all empty, so you can put things where you want them.”
Bikky stared at the boxes, amazed. “All that’s my stuff?”
“Yep!” Dee said from the doorway. “Me and Ryo had to lug all that lot up four flights of stairs, so you’d best be grateful.” He handed out mugs of coffee. “It’s good to have you back, kid. Ryo’s been missin’ you big time.”
“Thanks.” Bikky accepted his mug and drank, old enough now to have coffee rather than a glass of milk or soda.
“So, what’re ya gonna do with all that junk?”
“Won’t know until I see what there is.” Bikky put his mug on the windowsill and started opening boxes, eager to see what was inside.
“I’ll leave you two to catch up,” Dee said, draining his mug. “Don’t forget we’ll be leavin’ here at ten tomorrow to pick Carol up at the airport, so you’d better not stay up too late. If you oversleep, I’m leavin’ without ya”
“Bikky will probably be up at the crack of dawn, ready to go,” Ryo teased. Carol had won a scholarship to study in England for the fall semester, so she and Bikky had been keeping in touch by email, phone, and skype.
“Count on it, I can’t wait to see her! Hey!” Dipping into one of the boxes he’d opened, Bikky pulled out a worn pair of skates, now way too small for his enormous feet. “My old skates, the ones I hid the drugs in when dad was killed. I thought they’d been thrown out years ago when I outgrew them and you got me a new pair.”
“You threw them out, but I rescued them,” Ryo admitted. “They were one of the few things you had that your father gave you. I know it’s silly and sentimental, but…”
“Thank you.” Bikky hugged the man who had taken over as his parent all those years ago. “I went down to the bins the next day, but they’d been emptied and I figured my old skates were gone for good. I always regretted ditching them like that because I forgot about this.” Sitting down on the floor, he pulled a small tool kit out of his luggage and used it to pry open a secret compartment beneath the sole of one boot. “There’s one in each boot, that’s where I hid the drugs, and this.” Bikky pulled out a wad of tissues, unfolding them to reveal a delicate gold locket. “It was my mom’s, I thought I’d never see it again.” Triggering the catch, he opened the locket and showed Ryo the pictures inside. “Mom and Dad, these are my favourite photos of them. I’ve got a couple of others, but these are special.”
“I had no idea that was in there,” Ryo said in wonder, taking the locket.
“Dad and I made the secret compartments, so I could always have some cash and the apartment key available for emergencies. When Dad died, I hid the locket because I didn’t want anyone to take it away from me. It was the most valuable thing I owned. Now thanks to you, I’ve got it back.” He looked at the skates. “I think I’m gonna keep these too, they’re still in pretty good shape. Maybe one day Carol and I will have a kid who can use them.”
Ryo nodded. “That’s a good plan.” He handed the locket back. “We should turn in, Biks; maybe you and Carol can go through the rest of the boxes another day; I’m sure the contents will bring back a lot of memories for both of you.”
“Yeah, prob’ly.” Bikky looked up from studying the faces of his birth parents. “Goodnight, Ryo, and thank you.”
“You’re welcome. Goodnight, Bikky. Sleep well.”
Bikky barely heard Ryo leave the room and close the door, lost in memories of the past. A lot had happened to him since the long ago day when the police came to tell him his father was dead. It had been the worst day of his life, but it had also been the beginning of a new and in many ways better life, and he couldn’t help thinking that maybe all this time his mom had been watching over him, like his own personal guardian angel, making sure he’d be okay.
“And I have been,” he said softly, smiling as he closed the locket and gripped it in his hand. “Thanks, mom.”