Characters: Dee, Ryo
Setting: After Vol. 7.
Summary: Dee and Ryo’s date was going so well until…
Word Count: 1324
Written For: Prompt # 454: Broken Zipper at slashthedrabble.
Disclaimer: I don’t own FAKE, or the characters. They belong to the wonderful Sanami Matoh.
A/N: This is the much longer version of the ficlet I posted at the community.
“You okay in there?”
They were out on a date, and Ryo had gone to the gents before leaving the restaurant, but he was taking a long time and Dee was getting a bit worried.
“Fine, but… Um, I think I might have a problem; the zip on my pants seems to be broken.” Even through the closed door, Ryo sounded flustered.
Oh, was that all?
“Want me to come in there and un-jam it for ya?” Dee was only half joking.
“I didn’t say it was jammed, I said it was broken. Big difference, Dee. The slidy bit’s come off the teeth on one side!”
“Slidy bit?” Dee snorted.
“I’m not a zip expert, Dee, I don’t know the technical name for it! Not that it matters right now. Point is, my fly won’t close, I’m not wearing a jacket because it’s so hot out I didn’t think I’d need one, and I can’t walk through the restaurant, never mind take the subway home, like this! Everybody would be staring!”
Dee couldn’t see his lover, but he didn’t need to; it was obvious from Ryo’s tone that he was blushing furiously.
“Okay, yeah, I can see how that might be a problem. Right, d’you think you can fix it?”
“That’s what I’m trying to… Oh no!”
“The slidy bit’s come right off both sides! There’s no way I can fix that. What am I going to do now?”
“Don’t panic for starters. Look, stay there; I’ll think of something.”
“I don’t know yet. Just… hang in there. Or, y’know, hang out, as the case may be.” Dee couldn’t help himself.
“Dee! That’s not funny!”
“Aw, c’mon, babe! It was a little funny!”
“You have a twisted mind, Dee Laytner.”
“You say that now…”
“Fine, okay, just stay put.”
“I wasn’t planning on going anywhere,” Ryo muttered. “With my luck I’d get arrested for indecent exposure. How would that look on my record? Dee?”
There was no answer; Dee had already gone.
Stepping back out into the restaurant, Dee stopped, frowning. What exactly could he do to fix the situation? He’d come out without a jacket too, thinking the same as Ryo. Who needed to cover up in a heatwave? Trading pants wasn’t an option because the problem would still be there, just on him instead of Ryo, and he didn’t know any more than his lover did about fixing broken zippers.
“Sir? Is everything alright?” Dee almost jumped out of his skin at the unexpected voice right by his elbow. It was one of the waiters.
“Uh, not exactly.” Dee kept his voice low so nobody else would overhear. “My partner’s stuck in the men’s room because the zipper on his pants has broken,” he explained. “I need to come up with a solution to the problem, but I’m drawin’ a blank.” Then an idea hit him. “You wouldn’t happen to know where I could get a couple of safety pins, would ya?”
“Sorry, no. I didn’t think people used things like that anymore.”
Dee sighed; that had been a long shot at best. “Only in emergencies,” he said wryly. “Might haveta start carryin’ some around with me; they’d come in handy right about now. Thanks anyway; I’m sure I’ll think of something.”
“I could loan you an apron, I guess.”
Dee thought of Ryo on the subway in a borrowed apron… Maybe taking a taxi would be a better idea. If they could flag one down.
“I’ll keep that in mind as a last resort, but hopefully it won’t come to that.”
“I’ll be around if you can’t come up with a better solution.”
The waiter carried on with his duties, leaving Dee deep in thought, considering his options. Looking around, hoping for another, more helpful brainwave, he happened to glance out the restaurant window and that was when he spotted the shop, just across the street. He’d seen it before, but it hadn’t quite registered until now. Dee smiled; it was just what he needed, and thankfully, even at this late hour, the lights were still on. Must be late closing today; that was a stroke of luck. Dashing outside, he dodged through the evening traffic and pushed his way through the door.
“Sorry, we’re just closing.” As she spoke, the woman didn’t so much as glance up from what she was doing, hanging things back on a rail.
“But it’s a police emergency!”
That got her attention, and as she turned towards him, Dee flashed his shield and her eyes widened
The badge on the woman’s blouse identified her as the store manager. She smiled up at Dee, her manner suddenly completely different. “Oh! Well in that case, what can I do for you, detective?”
“The zipper on my partner’s pants broke, so he’s had to take refuge across the road in the restaurant bathroom. He can’t leave without flashin’ everyone in the place.”
“Oh dear, how embarrassing!” To her credit, the manager was at least trying to keep a straight face, even if she wasn’t quite succeeding.
“Yeah. So if I could just…?”
“Oh, by all means! Take your time; I still have things to finish up.”
“I think my partner would rather I didn’t keep him waitin’ too long.” Dee dashed down the shop and was back at the checkout a few minutes later, paying for a reasonably decent pair of stonewashed denim jeans in Ryo’s size. “Thanks, you’re a lifesaver.”
“You’re welcome. I’m always happy to assist the police in any way I can.”
Dee was out the door before she could finish speaking.
Dodging back across the street, he strode purposefully through the restaurant and rapped on the bathroom door. “You still in there, babe?”
“Where else would I be?” Ryo sounded testy.
“Good point. Open up.”
The door cracked open and Ryo’s head appeared. “Did you…?”
“Yep! Didn’t I say I’d think of somethin’? Here.” He shoved the bag through the narrow gap. “Try these for size; got ‘em at the discount clothing place across the street, so they’re nothin’ special, but at least the zipper works. I checked.”
He caught a brief glimpse of Ryo’s relieved smile, then the bag vanished and the door closed. Dee leant against the wall, waiting impatiently, until Ryo finally emerged, dressed in the jeans, which fitted pretty well, and with his other pants now in the bag.
Dee straightened up, grinning, and gave Ryo a quick but thorough once-over. “Lookin’ good there! Feel better now?”
“Much better, thanks. That was embarrassing.” Ryo looked down at the jeans. “You even got the size right.”
“Course I did!”
“Well anyway, thanks. I’ll pay you back.”
“No need; call ‘em a gift. I’m just glad the shop hadn’t closed yet, otherwise you might’ve been stuck in there for hours!”
“Don’t even joke about it!” Ryo shuddered at the thought, leading the way out of the restaurant and onto the busy sidewalk. Suddenly he chuckled.
“What’s funny?” Dee glanced at his partner, curious; Ryo’s moods could change in a heartbeat, often leaving him wrong-footed.
“Just thinking; this is one date neither of us will forget in a hurry, just for all the wrong reasons.”
Dee snickered. “Yeah. Just be thankful your zipper didn’t give up the ghost in public; that would’ve been really bad.”
“Oh God!” Ryo blushed. “I guess I was lucky.”
Reaching for Ryo’s hand, Dee squeezed it. “Probably never have anything like that happen again for the rest of our lives, but I think from now on, I’m gonna start carryin’ safety pins everywhere I go, just to be on the safe side.”
“You know what the worst thing about all this is?”
Ryo bit his lip and grinned sheepishly at Dee. “Usually I do, never know when they might come in useful, but tonight I left them in my other pants.”
Dee threw back his head and laughed. “Only you!”