Abyss-Pt.3

A Togainu no Chi Fanfiction

Rating : T ( for violence, language and innuendos )

Pairing : ShikiXAkira

Genre : Romance

Characters : Akira, Shiki

Preview :  To most people, death is the most horrifying thing. But to a certain youth, death may be the only escape from his current situation. If death was to free him from that man’s grasp, then so be it.

 ——

III.

Preview : In this state of utter carelessness, if Akira was to slit his throat or break his neck, the most feared man of Toshima would just end up a lifeless corpse just like his victims.

 ——

It was stranger than his wildest imagination. The fact that Shiki did not force himself on him like usual was not what surprised him; the man was a cold-blooded killing machine, a narcissistic rapist, an arrogant owner but Shiki was not the one to go back on his words, that, Akira harbored no doubts. What confused him was Shiki’s falling asleep by Akira’s side, with his firm arms wrapping around Akira. As if afraid of Akira’s lean form would slip from his embrace and melt into thin air, as if afraid of losing Akira, Shiki held him with such force that it was almost uncomfortable to breathe in. If Akira did not know Shiki better, he would be convinced this act had been carried out of desperation. Shiki was not the type of person to hold another so dear that he would be too frightened to experience the feeling of lost. Once you had gotten used to, perhaps even enjoyed, the sadistic pleasure of slaughtering, you were also immune to love and compassion. That was the image of Shiki that Akira pictured. Still, if he carried on with that train of thought, this act of Shiki was incomprehensible, especially when Shiki had never shown even the tiniest of tenderness to Akira prior to this incident. Not only had he saved Akira (though in his way of saying, it had been only to ‘fix’ his damaged property), tended his wound, Shiki also embraced Akira in his sleep. It was not a pleasant feeling, to be in someone’s tight hug, but it was not so terrible either. With his body enveloped in the heat of another, warmth began to spread to every nook and canny of his being, so cozy that the gradually decreasing temperature in the room and the howling winds out of the creaked window frame seemed like a hazy dream. Despite there was no heater in the room, night chill did not invaded his poorly covered body, a living person’s temperature was more than enough to fight off the coldness. Besides, lying with Shiki in such position, Akira could feel every of his breaths ghosting over the youth’s shoulder, stimulating his sensitive skin; could almost make out every of his heartbeats with the steady rhythm of Shiki’s broad chest. Before he noticed, his own heart had subliminally synced with Shiki’s heart in a harmonious tune. This urged the blood to rush to his pale cheeks, warm them up with unusual heat. It was vastly different from the time his blood boiled in his veins and his face went red with humiliation; it was a strange, unnamed sensation never before the youth had experienced nor imagined to experience with a person he so despised as Shiki. Nevertheless, it was not unpleasant.

Breaths so hot on one’s skin, chest heaving in tune with his heart beats, blood flowing in his veins to verify his existence; under the cold yet fair skin of a mannequin, Shiki was, after all, a normal human, the same as any other humans he had nonchalantly cut down. Only in his sleep that the twisted cruelty in his crimson eyes and the sardonic smirk constantly adorned his lips were absent, leaving his countenance in its genuine pulchritude. Akira could not deny that his blatantly egotistical owner possessed a rare, unearthly charm he had not seen before. One could easily say such beauty was very much akin to a demon’s attraction; it was lethal yet few had the courage to reject it. Even Akira found himself somewhat drawn in it in spite of his full knowledge of what lied beneath such alluring façade.  For a moment, he allowed himself to loosen his guard to appreciate a close view of his master’s face since a chance like this would not come very often.

In this state of utter carelessness, if Akira was to slit his throat or break his neck, the most feared man of Toshima would just end up a lifeless corpse just like his victims. He would not have a chance to fight back nor would he suffer any pains; his heart would stop beating and his brain would stop functioning, a beautiful death like Akira had always thought. When this notion passed his intoxicated mind, Akira’s blood seemed to stop flowing for a moment. All the warmth that had been embracing him vanished like he was, all of sudden, thrown into a black hole and he kept falling but never reached the bottom. What was this unfathomable feeling ? Was apprehension of killing ? Unlike Shiki, whose life might not have gone a day without killing, Akira had never deliberately taken a life. Deep down inside, he feared it. The sight of his adopted father killing a stray cat had engraved vividly in his memory. Death, he perceived, was beautiful; still, the act of killing itself was terrifying beyond his imagination. He had declared to take Shiki’s life whenever he had a chance. When a chance was actually presented to him, he recoiled from carrying the act that would free himself from this nightmare called Shiki. Such was his irony. He was afraid to kill Shiki and he could not help but allowing this hesitation to slowly devour his animosity. Akira did not want to admit it but the truth lied naked in front of his eyes. Somehow, his heart and body had begun to form some kind of attachment to the man who was his captor. This was the root of his demur. Had he not touched the stray cat, not grown fond of it, the image of that cat brutally slaughtered might not have left such a horrifying impression on his mind. Had he not been in Shiki’s arms, had not experienced the warmth of his body, his demur to kill Shiki might not have become so fierce. Yet, once that warmth had gone deeper into his being, passing the barrier of plain physical needs, there was no way for Akira to shake it off his mind. Everything else became surreal, only the pleasant heat of Shiki’s body was real. No matter how much he detested Shiki’s arrogance, he enjoyed the sensation of being enveloped in Shiki’s arms, if not, seeked for it. This was the cage he refused the chance to break; therefore, he had no other choices but to remain trapped in it, endured it till he finally grew tired of it. Though he might resent it in the future, right now, it was his choice.

Blood loss had nearly consumed all of his vitality, his limbs moved with sluggishness and his mind in a haze. Despite, Akira could not call back the sleepiness he had had earlier. Sure he was in fatigue but even if he shut his eyes, he would not be able to drift into his sleep. Because so, he was forced to stay awake. The dawn was far from coming and Shiki was still deep in his slumber, Akira was left with only himself to contemplate the dusty ceiling while wearily waiting for sleepiness to claim him once again. Even such simple attempt was disturbed by savage thirst; right now, he craved for nothing than water. Just one sip of that liquid was enough to lessen the fire scorching the inside of his throat.

Hunger he could bear but thirst was an emergency need demanding to be satisfied. The more he tried to suppress it, forget about it, the more severe it would become.

There was a bottle Shiki had left on the table after his return. Probably water but other drinkable liquid was fine since it could calm his intense thirst. Akira tried reaching out his hand, testing the distance between him and the bottle. It was only a mere inch that prevented him from getting what he wanted; Akira signed in frustration, if only Shiki had placed it a little closer. Stretching out his arm one more time, he reached to the bottle. His fingertips barely touched the surface, feeling cool. If he could touch it, there was a chance he could maneuver it into his grasp.

The sound of broken glass was not pleasant to the ears. When Akira thought he finally had it in his hand, the bottle slipped from fingers and met it ends in dozens pieces. Its content spilled on the cement floor, reeking of a smell that was not water’s. So engulfed in his physical demand that Akira had entirely forgotten about his bandaged hand. It was the hand he had used to punch the window, breaking the glass. Though less severe than the cut, the skin on that hand was littered with bleeding scratches. He had paid them no mind; still, with a rare consideration Shiki had spotted them while tending to the wound on his other arm.  The cloth used to dress the scratches made it harder for him to grasp something with a smooth surface; therefore, the bottle fell from his hand to the floor.

His sleep was disturbed by a terrible noise, Shiki opened his eyes and looked at Akira through a dozy veil.

“What happened ?”

“The bottle slipped from my hand.”

Shiki sat up with his hand casually rubbing his glassy eyes in order to chase away the sleepiness left in them. If Akira did not know Shiki any better, perhaps he would find a half-asleep Shiki very charming.

“You thirsty ?”

Apparently, that question was only rhetorical since he had already registered the situation. If he had not been so thirsty, he would have tried so desperately to get the bottle.

Shiki’s gaze laid upon what had been previously a glass container of some fluid.

“You can’t drink alcohol to quench your thirst.”

Akira arched an eyebrow. That was not really what he had expected to hear.

“You drink ?”

“Once in a while. It’s relaxing.”

Akira did not know how he should react to this newfound knowledge. His mind toyed with the imagination of Shiki getting drunk and losing his normal composure. If such thing was to happen in reality, it would surely a sight to remember.

“It’s a shame. I didn’t bring back water. Only that bottle of alcohol.”

Akira’s temples twitched. Had he intended to leave Akira a whole day with alcohol instead of normal drinking water ?

Shiki suddenly rose up from the bed. He carefully avoided the broken shards on the floor and walked to the corner of the room, where he had laid his trusted katana. Bewildered, Akira watched as Shiki unsheathed the sword and came back to the bed.

“What’re you doing ?”

Shiki did not answer his question. He only cast a quick glance at Akira’s reflecting on the shining surface of the sword he polished with care everyday. Before Akira realized his intention, the edge of Shiki’s katana had sliced open his palm. As if immune to the pain, Shiki’s expression remained stoic when he extended his bloody palm to Akira.

“What’re…”

“You’re thirsty, right ? Take my blood !”

His query was cut short with a tone of dead seriousness. When he spoke with such tone, Akira immediately knew Shiki was not joking.

“Are you out of your mind ?”

Deliberately ignorant of Akira’s protest, Shiki seized his jaw with enough power to keep Akira’s mouth open. A flow of liquid was poured into his mouth; thick, metallic taste assaulted his tongue. It was foreign at first, to have someone’s blood down his throat; nevertheless, it sufficiently cooled the flame tormenting him from within. The steel-like grip on his chin loosened without his notice; as soon as he downed Shiki’s blood, his rationality was clouded with a mild haze. He was unable to comprehend the cause of this sudden bloodlust; all he knew at the moment was he wanted more of that blood. Unconsciously, he leaned toward, holding Shiki’s arm with both of his hands.

His pet’s reaction when he got in contact with his blood brought a satisfied smirk on Shiki’s lips.

“How does it taste ? Good, isn’t it ?”

Apparently, Shiki’s taunt failed to reach Akira’s ears; the boy was too indulged in his bloodlust. “This isn’t enough.” The thought repeatedly resounded in his intoxicated mind as he used his tongue to draw out more blood, hungrily sucking each drop like a baby being breastfed. When blood stopped coming, Akira bit at Shiki’s skin.

A strong hand forcefully grabbed his chin, lifting it up so that his glassy eyes met a pair of crimson orbs.

“Enough.”

The short command pulled him back to reality. Subsequently, his eyes regained their usual light, his hand was brought up to wipe away little blood left on his smeared lips. When he glanced at his teeth mark marring the immaculate skin, a surge of remorse hit his heart but he quickly dismissed it. It was only a small compensation for what Shiki had been doing to him.

Akira was surprised by Shiki’s unexpected act when the man leaned toward him. The distance between their faces was so close that he could feel Shiki’s breath hot on his skin. Was Shiki going to kiss him ? The idea itself was enough to urge the blood to rush to his cheeks. Why did he blush over such trivial matter ? After all, they had gone far more intimate than a mere touch of two pairs of lips.

He half closed his eyes, expecting a fierce assault. It was not like Shiki had never kissed him before. However, all his kisses, if they could really be called ‘kisses’, came without warning and were always too rough that they caused Akira’s lips swollen afterward. Instead of pressing his lips to Akira’s, Shiki just licked away a single droplet of blood clinging to the corner of his mouth and leaned back, restoring their respective distance. Throughout the course of action, his expression showed not even the slightest change. In contrast, Akira was puzzled and disappointed. The wet sensation of Shiki’s tongue lingered faintly on the skin he had licked and the youth swallowed hard when he recalled how Shiki had almost touched his lips. Shiki’s kiss was not enjoyable; nonetheless, Akira was looking forward to it. Heat started to coil in his stomach; he was angry. Did Shiki just toy with him like always ? Moreover, he was angry at his body for having reacted so strongly to a mere, simple stimulation.

“Now, who resembles a dog ?”

He vented out his frustration on Shiki, who was the cause of the oddness proceeding in his body. Akira did prepare for Shiki’s punishment when his remark which sounded suspiciously similar to an insult came out from his mouth. After all, Shiki was a man with enormous ego who could not, would not stay silent at an insult being carelessly thrown at his face.

“First, you bit me. Now, you even dare to bark at your master. For a pet, you have ill manner.”

His tone was strangely calm, like a forgiving owner patting his pet’s head. This enraged Akira even more because the fact that Shiki was not acting like himself confused him. What was going on inside his head, Akira wondered. Was he planning something ? Would it be better if Shiki just went on being the ruthless owner he always was ? As uncertainties piled up in his mind, Akira was prompted to provoke Shiki, to see how much it would take till his composure crumbled and his violent side took over.

“And who are you, the one that fucks a dog ?”

“A master can do whatever he wants with his pet.”

“So, how will you punish me ? Beat me ? Fuck me the way you’ve been doing every night ?”

“Normally, I would. But tonight, I’m not in the mood.”

“Not in the mood.” he said. In the brief moment when these words left his mouth, Akira swore he could see all the arrogance, sadism and cruelty vanished from the mysterious glow of Shiki’s crimson orbs. In those red irises always blazing with a frigid flame existed a deep void that seemed to eat away at his soul. Akira had once heard about a ‘madness’ that lurked in everybody’s minds. Was this void a sign of Shiki’s madness ?

For an instance Akira thought he had caught a glimpse of the depth of Shiki’s soul. Shiki was a man of complexity; every of his actions seemed to be governed by his whims alone, completely lacking reasons. Akira had told himself that he did not give a damn about what Shiki was thinking, nor did he try to comprehend that man; yet, there was a part of him that restlessly aroused his curiosity. He yearned to know Shiki, searching with every chance he could have to find even the tiniest part that reflected Shiki’s inner side. Shiki was undeniably strong; he would not allow others to easily see his weaknesses, especially Akira. His hope had eventually faded until today, when he could finally grasp a spark of Shiki’s mind and what he perceived was a terrible emptiness.

He did not want to care about Shiki. However, the hollow stubbornly clung to his mind, haunting him. Subsequently, he let the reason he had tried to vex Shiki’s anger slipped.

Sulking, he lied down, feeling really stupid. What was the point of getting on Shiki’s nerves and later, getting punished by him while his utmost need at the moment was a peaceful rest ? After all, he had barely escaped the hands of Death.

Though with his eyes closed, he could feel a cool hand lightly touching his cheeks. Instinctively, he brushed that hand off, knowing fully whose it was.

“Don’t touch me !”

“You crave for your master’s touches so much that you can’t sleep ?”

A smile crept up the corner of his lips as Shiki whispered into Akira’s ears.

“Didn’t you say you weren’t in the mood ?”

“I’m not that terrible of an owner who selfishly denies his pet’s needs.”

“I don’t need your so-called generosity!”

Akira turned his face to the wall, feigning sleep. He swore he could hear Shiki’s light chuckles echoing in his ears but he paid them no mind because he started to feel the sleepiness brushing his eyelids.

The secluded space in the room soon sunk in the silence of the full moon. Without the tilted glass, its light seemed to shine more brilliantly than usual.

When he woke up the next morning, Shiki had left. The same routine repeated itself, only without the dull weariness left inside him after their nightly intercourse. Still, he felt weak. It was only normal when he had lost quite an amount of blood in that attempt of suicide. It would take some days, probably, for him to fully recover.

The handcuff was gone, only the whiteness of bandage was seen. When he realized Shiki had considerately changed his bandage before his departure, the warmth in his stomach spread to every nooks of his body. It was different from Shiki’s embrace but equally, it was pleasant.

His stomach harshly complained him for neglecting its food intake. With no reservation, he grabbed the pack of Solids Shiki had prepared on the table. Omurice, his favorite flavor tasted even more delicious when he was starving. Shiki might treat him like his slave but one thing Akira knew for sure: Shiki never left him deprived of food and drinks.

Shards of the broken had been cleaned up. Akira chuckled to himself, Shiki had been overly cautious when he had destroyed any means Akira could use to assist in his self-destruction. Little did he know, the idea of suicide had ceased from Akira’s mind.

The sky outside the small window frame was still the same as always; however, it was also different. A soft breeze came in, gently caressed Akira’s cheeks.

There was something changing in this stale room, as in Akira’s heart.

——

Note : Well, basically, it was the end of Akira’s POV. The next chapter will be written in Shiki’s POV.

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