VEREITELUNG (Frustration)

A Weiss Kreuz Sekkushiaru Roman

By Sailor Mac

The walls were shaking . . . they were crumbling around him . . . and then the floor gave way. He grabbed for something, anything, but there was nothing to grab onto, just the air and the bits of debris around him. And then he was falling down, toward the ocean that roared beneath them . . .

Omi sat up in bed, gasping. His hands clutched the sheets as the last remnants of the nightmare faded away.

It's over, he thought. I'm just reliving it in a dream . . . it's all behind us, and we're safe.

He lay back on the too-firm hospital bed, breathing in the antiseptic air. He and the others had all been in the Kritiker hospital ever since that last fight with Schwarz. Omi still didn't know how they'd survived it . . . he'd passed out during the free-fall, as had Ken. Yohji had said something about "something catching us . . . kinda like a net." Omi figured that either Kritiker had sent someone to help him, or Schwarz had done something with their psychic powers to save themselves, and accidentally saved Weiss in the process.

All he knew was he had woken up stiff and sore, No wonder . . . he'd been slammed hard into a wall by sheer psychic force. But it wasn't his injuries he was concerned with . . . it was Ken's. His lover's head had been repeatedly bashed into concrete by the psychotic Farfarello. The doctors had assured Omi there'd been no serious damage . . . they'd taken CAT scans, run all kinds of tests . . . but Omi still wasn't entirely convinced. I'll have to watch him, he thought, and make sure nothing shows up later.

The sound of someone in the doorway made him start a little . . . even though they were in Kritiker's secure hospital, there was no telling if one of the enemies had somehow found out the location. His hand reached automatically for the nighttable drawer.

"No need to get out the darts, Angel," Ken said, entering the room. "Unless I did something to make you mad."

Omi breathed a big sigh of relief. "Ken-Ken! I just . . . I had a nightmare about what happened."

Ken approached the bed and held his arms out to Omi. "It's okay. I think we all will be having nightmares for awhile." They began to embrace . . . and then pulled back a little.

"Still sore?" Ken said.

"A little," Omi replied.

Both boys shifted their positions . . . a few inches this way, a few that way . . . until they nestled into a position which was comfortable for both of them.

"We're making progress," Ken said. "When we first came here, we couldn't even touch each other without pain, let alone hug."

"Good," Omi replied. "Maybe they'll let us out soon."

Ken kissed the top of his head. "Miss the flower shop?"

"Mmm," Omi replied, gingerly resting his head on Ken's shoulder. "I want to get back to something that feels like normal life . . . even for us."

Ken gave him a broad smile. "Does that mean you miss all those girls who hang around you?"

Omi pulled back a little and turned crimson. "Ken-kun! You know I'd never, ever cheat on you!"

The sound of high heels walking toward the doorway made them pull away from each other, quickly. They knew the distinctive footfalls of their commanding officer very well. Sure enough, a redhead in a short-skirted business suit came into the room, bearing a briefcase.

"Hello, boys," she said. "I'm glad I have two of you here together, I can tell you both at once.

"Tell us what, Manx?" Ken said, sitting down in a plastic bucket chair at Omi's bedside.

Manx pulled up a second chair and sat in it gracefully, crossing her long, shapely legs in a way that would have made the boys' hearts flutter . . . if they were inclined that way.

"You have new orders from Kritiker," she said. "You are not to return to the Koneko."

Ken and Omi looked at each other, blinking. Not to return . . . did this mean they didn't have to be Weiss anymore?

"Excuse me," Omi said, trying to keep the hope and enthusiasm out of his voice, "but does that mean we're discharged from duty?"

"By all means, no," Manx said. "Kritiker considers you more valuable than ever . . . none of our teams has dealt firsthand with Schwarz before. No, we've got a new cover operation for you." She opened the briefcase and pulled out a drawing of a large trailer.

Ken and Omi exchanged glances again, this time of disappointment. More valuable than ever . . . that meant their chances of ever getting away from Weiss were even lower than they were before.

"This is a mobile flower shop," Manx said. "You will use it to drive around the city . . . even to other parts of the country, if necessary. This will both keep you on the run so it's harder for Schwarz to find you, and allow you to expand your base of operations beyond central Tokyo."

She took out a second illustration, a cross-section of the van. "As you can see, your greenhouse area doubles as meeting room for Weiss . . . Omi, your computer equipment will be there. And these couple of rooms over there are your living quarters . . .

The boys looked at the illustration and blinked in alarm. The "living quarters" consisted of one room with a television, a table and four bunk beds, a small kitchenette, and a bathroom.

Oh, no, Omi thought. This can't be! After we've had our own apartments for so long . . . "You mean, we're all going to be LIVING . . . in *one trailer*?"

"Of course," Manx said, putting the illustrations away. "More than one trailer would arouse suspicion."

Crap, Ken thought. Just *crap*. How the hell are we gonna do this? We sure as hell can't tell Kritiker about our relationship. They're not gonna like two of their guys being in love . . . they'll think we'll put each other above the mission, and they'll end up assigning us to different teams.

"When do we . . . move in?" Omi said.

"As soon as you get out of the hospital," Manx said, rising to her feet, "which should be tomorrow. I have to get back to headquarters now. I will talk to you again once you're settled into the trailer." She turned and left the room, and the boys listened until her footsteps faded away.

Omi let out a deep sigh. "Gods . . . I can't believe this . . ."

Ken got up and began to pace. "There's gotta be a way around this. I mean, there's just gotta! Maybe only a couple of guys are expected to live in that thing at a time. I mean, did it really look big enough for four?"

Omi shook his head. "No, no . .. it's definitely for all of us. There were *four bunks*.

"And now, we have to act like kids at summer camp instead of adults in love," Ken said. "Nice."

Omi put his head in his hands. "Short of telling them, there's no way that . . ."

And then, a familiar voice in the doorway said, "Helloooo, bishounens!" Yohji ambled into the room, looking as calm as ever. Of course, *he* could be calm . . . he wasn't the one who was romantically involved with a teammate!

"Hi, Yohji-kun," Omi said. "Did Manx talk to you, too?"

"Oh, yes," Yohji said, sitting in the same seat Manx had occupied just minutes before. "Seems we're about to become roommates again."

Ken let out a deep sigh. "They could have done something rather than make us all live together in a room the size of a Pocky box,"

"Hey, it won't be so bad," Yohji said, taking his cigarettes out of his robe pocket despite the "NO SMOKING" signs on the walls. "I've lived in smaller places before." He gave them a teasing smile. "But I know what you two are worried about. Hey, we can time-shift the beds."

Ken stiffened. "WHAT?"

Omi blushed. "Yohji-kun!"

"Sure," Yohji said, lighting up. "That way, I have nights to take dates there, and you two have nights to . . . well, you know."

Omi just turned a deeper crimson. Ken clenched his fists and stammered, "What do you mean by that?"

"Oh, I think you can figure it out," Yohji said, getting up. "See you at the trailer tomorrow!"

When he was gone, Ken stormed in the direction of the door, growling, "He had better not be planning on making snarky remarks about our relationship all the time. Because, so help me, I'll . . ."

"Ken-kun!" Omi said, getting out of the bed and walking over toward him. "We're just going to have to make the best of this. There's no way out of it. And I don't think Yohji-kun will spend all the time making fun of us. Remember, he helped get us together in the first place."

Ken flopped down in one of the chairs. He remembered all too well Yohji giving him that clout in the jaw for refusing to acknowledge that he was in love with Omi. If it hadn't been for that . . . they would have never become lovers.

What good is it doing us now, Ken thought, if we can't be intimate with each other when we want to anymore?

He reached out and took Omi's hands in both of his. "Angel . . . what are we gonna do now?"

Omi tried to think of some solution . . . some miraculous way out of their predicament . . . but he was coming up totally empty.

He shook his head and said, "I don't know."

* * *

Yohji ambled down the hall, pausing to check out the nurses' desk. To his disappointment, the pretty little number he'd been flirting with before wasn't on duty. A severe-looking older woman with steel-gray hair and a uniform so starched it seemed to be made out of wood was there in her place, looking through the patents' charts . . . no doubt trying to find mistakes her younger colleagues had made so she could call them on the carpet for it.

People like her, he thought, make me glad we're getting out of this place tomorrow.

He continued on to the room at the end of the hall. The occupant of the single bed had his red head lowered over a book, and he seemed quite immersed in what he was reading.

"Have you been out of this room *once* since we got here?" Yohji asked him, leaning over the doorway.

Aya reached for his bookmark on the nighttable. "We're supposed to be here to get better. Not run around socializing with the staff."

"You should try it sometime," Yohji said, sitting at the side of his bed. "You might actually find out you like people."

Aya just replaced the book on the nighttable with a small thud. He had no desire to socialize. They were killers who lived in secret . . . what good would it do them to make social contacts? Especially now that they were going to be uprooted?

Besides, there was only one person in the world that he would ever love, and he still hadn't given up hope of seeing him again . . . despite the fact that his searches over recent months had turned up fruitless.

"I just spoke to the lovebirds," Yohji said, learning back in his seat. "They're not happy about the new arrangements."

"And I take it you're not, either," Aya said, sitting up a bit more in bed.

"Well, it *is* going to cramp my style," Yohji said, taking out another cigarette. "Kind of hard to entertain a lady for the evening when your living quarters is full of other people."

"This is a mission," Aya replied in a cool tone. "We do what we are assigned to do."

"Huh," said Yohji. "I kinda wish Kritiker would let *us* have some say in things once in awhile."

"You want to get killed, that's your prerogative," Aya said. "We cannot afford to take chances. Not after this last mission."

"Eh, I know," Yohji said, standing up. "All the more reason for me to want to go after Schwarz . . . for ruining our off-duty lives."

"When it comes right down to it," Aya replied, "there's no such thing for us as off-duty lives."

"Maybe, maybe," Yohji replied, headed for the door. "Still . . . we need to enjoy ourselves sometimes, right?"

"Hmm," Aya said.

As he walked away, Yohji thought . . . he's accepted this trailer thing without question, all right. But is he going to be so frosty when we're in close quarters with two horny teenage boys who can't keep their hands off each other?

Back in the room, Aya picked up his book and tried to read again. I'm the only one who's accepted this, he thought. They need to realize how serious our situation is.

But a voice in the back of his head said, would you be so accepting if you had found Yuushi again, and the two of you had to live in that trailer with everyone else? And he knew full well what the answer was.

Deep inside, he was just as unhappy over the move as everyone else. Because he knew it decreased his chances of ever finding Yuushi again.

* * *

"Thank you very much!" Omi said, handing the change over to the green-haired young girl in the blue-and-white sailor uniform. "Come again!"

The girl giggled. "Are you going to be here for a long time, Omi-kun?"

"We usually set up camp in a certain area until business dries up," he said. "We should be here at least a little while longer."

"Terrific!" she said. "I'll get my friends to come down here, too! 'Bye, Omi-kun!"

Omi sighed as he watched her go. There were plenty more where she came from. In fact, their trailer was completely surrounded by young girls, most pretending to be interested in the flowers set up on the moveable displays, but really ogling the boys running it.

It's just like the Koneko, he thought. Only in a different place. How do they manage to find us so fast? We've only been here a few days!

Several feet away, Ken was waiting on two girls at once, each one trying to command his attention away from the other.

"I want that pot of pinks over there," said the short-haired blonde in the brown school uniform.

"I want that pot of gladiolas next to it," said the redhead in the softball uniform next to her.

"I want gladiolas, too!" the first one said.

"And I want to see what you have in long-stemmed roses!" the other countered.

The first girl turned to the second and snapped, "Haven't you got a practice to go to?"

"Practice broke up early. And I thought *you* had a debating club meeting after school?"

Great, Ken thought. I'm the object of a catfight. This is going to be a *long* day.

When he had days like this at their old place, he'd take a long, hot shower and wait for Omi to show up at his apartment. Omi would tell him he still looked stressed, and offer to give him a massage. And that, very often, led to . . .

He firmly pushed the thought out of his mind as he ran here and there, getting everything the two girls wanted. Gods, how long had it been since he and Omi had made love? It was probably the night before that last mission against Estet and Schwarz . . . which seemed like an eternity ago . . .

They'd managed to control themselves very well in their new surroundings. At least so far.

But I'm starting to feel . . . empty, Ken thought. I miss having him with me. I miss being able to touch him, hold him, kiss him, whenever I want. I miss his warmth in the bed next to me.

And then, there was the small matter of missing the feel of his smooth, soft skin under his fingers, his lips, his tongue . . . the sound of his gasps and moans as Ken drove him higher and higher toward the peak of pleasure . . . the taste of his . . .

Both girls shrieked as the pot slipped out of Ken's hands and shattered on the ground.

He felt the eyes of all the girls on him . . . and all his teammates.

"Ken-kun?" Omi said. He knew it wasn't like his lover, the ex-professional athlete, to be clumsy.

"Sorry," Ken said, hurriedly picking up the shards of pottery, the clumps of dirt. "I'll get you another one right away . . . just wait a minute . . ."

Yohji watched him from within a cluster of girls and sighed. I have a feeling, he thought, we're going to be seeing a lot more of that.

* * *

Omi woke up and looked over at the clock on the bureau across the room. Three a.m. He hadn't slept through the night since they'd moved into this trailer.

It wasn't as if the bunk he was on was uncomfortable. Not at all. And Yohji, who had the bunk above him, was pretty much a quiet sleeper.

It was just that his bed felt so very, very cold and empty. And there was Ken, sleeping right across the room from him . . . so close, and yet so far . . .

I just want to be close to him for a moment, Omi thought. Just to warm up a little. And then I'll go back to my own bunk.

He scurried across the room and slid under the covers next to Ken. Oh, gods, it was so good to be pressed up against his warmth, to be breathing in his scent . . . Omi felt like he'd come home after being away for a six-month journey.

Ken's eyes opened, and he felt the familiar body snuggled against his. Instinctively, his arms came around Omi, and the younger boy gave a small purr of pleasure.

"Hi, Angel," Ken whispered. "This is a nice surprise."

"I just wanted to be close to you," Omi whispered back. "Just for a moment, and then I'll go back . . ."

"Don't rush it," Ken murmured, kissing Omi's cheek, then forehead. "We have all night . . . let's just enjoy being together for a little while."

"Ken-Ken . . . " Omi breathed, melting at the feel of those familiar lips. He wanted more . . . just one kiss, just one quiet kiss . . .

He sought out Ken's mouth with his own, and they came together, gentle and sweet, softly caressing. They broke apart, kissing each other's cheeks, noses, chins . . .

Then, their lips met again, and it was hotter this time, the kiss deepening rapidly, Omi's tongue almost involuntarily flicking at the place where their mouths were joined. Ken opened to him with a gasp, and they rolled so Omi was atop Ken, arms tightly wrapped around each other, tongues seeking each other out, finding each other, caressing, dancing, moving together, hot and wet and . . .

Omi moaned deeply in his throat, and there was a stirring in the other two beds as the occupants woke up.

Suddenly, the lovers snapped back to harsh reality. Omi rolled off Ken as if he'd been blasted ouf of a canon, quickly getting out of the bed and hurrying back to his own.

He could see the other two semi-sitting on their beds. Aya's face bore a look of indignation, as if he resented being awakened in the middle of the night. Yohji bore a smile bordering on a smirk.

Suddenly, Omi felt less like sleeping than ever before.

* * *

"How much is this basket, Omi-kun?" the freckled redhead asked, giggling.

Omi stifled a yawn as he tried to remember the price. Sleep had been entirely a lost cause after the incident with Ken's bed. Oh, his eyes had closed and he'd nodded off . . . but he'd been plagued with dreams of Ken's body pressed against his, Ken's hands moving over him slowly, Ken's mouth . . .

"Twenty five hundred yen," he heard himself saying. He had no idea if that was the actual price, it just sounded right. And that annoyed him. "Just sounded right" was not the way he usually did things. He prided himself on his knowledge of their inventory.

As the girl handed over her money and left, Omi felt a hand slam down on his shoulder. "Hard night last night?" Yohji said.

"Yohji-kun!" Omi said. "I don't want to talk about last night . . . I'm busy!"

Yohji was taken aback. This short temper . . . it wasn't like Omi. Not at all.

"I told you, if you want to time-shift the trailer . . ."

"We'll talk about this later!" Omi said, seeing another customer wave him over.

What's happening to me? he thought. I don't think I've ever felt this way before, except when I was sick . . . this feeling of being downright uncomfortable all the time, no matter what I do . . .

Across the sales area, Ken was besieged by another crowd. Gods, he thought, does it ever end? I can't deal with this . . . not today. I just feel like I could explode. I'm tired and I'm cranky and I'm . . ..

"I want to see one of those pots of tulips!" one girl said.

"I want to see one, too!" the chubby girl beside her chimed in. "And one of those table centerpieces!"

"Can you get me some white roses, Ken-kun?" said a tall blonde on the other side of her.

"Hey, I was talking to him first!" the first girl said.

"And I was here before ANY of you!" snapped a purple-haired girl at the edge of the group. "I get to talk to him before ANY of . . ."

"QUIET!" Ken yelled, suddenly. The girls all took a step back, looks of shock on their faces. "Look, this is a place of business, not a playground! You'll all get waited on eventually!"

Aya, who was waiting on his own group of customers, excused himself and walked over toward Ken. "That's enough, Ken," he said. "I'll handle this."

Ken whirled toward him, a look akin to fury on his face. "I have this under control, Aya!"

"No, you don't," Aya said. "Go cool down in the trailer for a few . . ."

They were interrupted by the sound of a crash. Ken and Aya both turned around to see a smashed flowerpot, Omi staggering in front of it. It was obvious what had happened.

"Omi!" Ken said, rushing over to him. Gods, first I break a pot, then he does, he thought. We're going to have the entire inventory destroyed before the week's out.

Aya regarded both of them with a steely glare. "I see the two of you have a problem," he said, cooly. "Please make sure you take care of it." He turned back to the customers.

Ken and Omi looked at each other and sighed. They knew what was wrong with them. They were losing concentration, losing their tempers and screwing up because of unfulfilled passion.

It was one thing to screw up while selling flowers . . . but if they screwed up at their *other* job, their real one . . . it could mean their lives.

"Tonight," Ken whispered. "We're going to do something about it tonight."

* * *

Ken listened until Aya's slow, even breathing assured him that his teammate was asleep. They didn't have to worry about Yohji . . . he'd said something about going clubbing in town and taken off hours ago.

Their trailer was parked right near a sizeable clump of bushes. It would be no problem at all to go out there and utilize them. Ken felt like a 16-year-old again, when he used to make out with Kase in the bushes at the edge of the practice field.

He picked up the shopping bag he'd hidden in their small closet, packed with beach blankets, lubricant, condoms and a small towel. Crossing the room silently, as only experienced assassins can do, he shook Omi's shoulder.

The boy's eyes opened, and he knew instantly what to do. He looked at Ken and nodded, then got out of the bed. It was all happening with perfectly timed precision . . . as if they were in the midst of a mission.

Ken pushed the trailer door open, and they slipped out. The nearly-full moon had colored the landscape a shimmering silver, and they were able to pick out their target easily.

They moved swiftly toward the bushes as Ken removed the blanket from the bag. He spread it on the ground, and they wrapped their arms around each other, their mouths coming together fiercely, kissing each other hard, wet and deep. Ken slid his tongue into Omi's mouth, slowly, and a shudder of hot desire passed through him as he felt his lover respond, fluttering his tongue against Ken's.

Their bodies began to move together, rubbing, grinding, trying to create as much friction as possible. Omi flung his leg over Ken's hip, thrusting his pelvis, feeling himself rub against cloth . . . Gods, Ken felt a million miles away from him, the clothing they both wore was like brick walls . . .

"Yes," Ken moaned, moving his own hips as well. "Omi . . . oh, Angel . . ." He pulled his lover downward, his whole body ablaze, determined to get him flat on his back and out of those clothes. They landed on the blanket, wrapping their arms around each other tightly, rolling over and . . .

Right into someone else, who gave a high-pitched shriek.

Both boys sat up with a gasp. There was a maroon-haired, heavily made-up woman, trying to cover her ample, bare bosom with a discarded shirt . . . and next to her was . . .

"Well, I see we're going to have to time-share the *bushes* now!" Yohji said, looking highly amused.

Omi turned crimson. "Yoh . . . Yohji-kun!"

"Look, maybe I'd better get out of here," the woman said, starting to put her shirt back on . . . and giving Ken and Omi a full view of her bare top, making Omi blush even more.

"No, no, no, that's okay!" Ken said, getting up and pulling Omi to his feet as well, the mood broken. "We're going!" The boys began running back toward the trailer as if the hounds of hell were on their heels.

"Oh, no," Omi whispered, still beet-red. "Oh, gods, oh, gods, oh, gods . . ."

"Don't worry about it," Ken whispered back. "We'll try again . . . in the morning . . . I've got a plan . . ."

* * *

The sun was peeking over the horizon as Ken's alarm went off. He'd stuck the clock under his pillow so nobody else could hear it but him.

Once again, he slipped across the room and shook Omi awake. The younger boy was on his feet almost instantly, following Ken across the room.

The boys went into the bathroom and shut the door. Ken immediately turned on the shower.

"If we keep it quiet," he whispered, "the noise of the shower will cover any noises we make." He leaned over, bringing his lips to Omi's as his fingers moved down to his lover's shirt, grasping it from the bottom and pulling it up and over his head.

"And we always did like making love in the shower," Omi giggled, pulling Ken's shirt off as well.

"Some of our best performances were underwater," Ken said, teasingly, yanking Omi's shorts off, then his own. They flung their arms around each other, kissing fiercely as they headed for the stream of water . . .

Outside, Yohji was awakened by the sound of the shower. Good gods, he thought, who's up at *this* hour! This is the middle of the night . . . Of course, he had only gone to bed a couple of hours ago, so that wasn't helping matters.

He looked over to the other side of the room. Aya was sitting straight up in bed, looking at the bathroom door with a slight frown on his face.

"You do know what's going on in there, don't you?" he said.

"Ah, it's none of our business," Yohji yawned, laying back down. "Let them have their fun." He didn't want to tell Aya that *he* was the one who had gotten in the way of their fun the night before.

"I'm afraid their fun isn't going to last long," Aya said, lying back down.

"What do you mean by that?" Yohji said, pulling the blankets back up.

"Because," Aya said, "as you recall, we were told to stagger our showers, to all shower at different times of the day."

"What's that got to do with anything?" Yohji mumbled, more than half asleep.

"It means," said Aya, "that this trailer's bathroom has a rather small . . ."

And then, a pair of unearthly shrieks erupted from the bathroom, like the howls of the damned . . . or the scream of a couple of lovers whose ardor had just been doused with cold water. Yohji sat up with a start.

" . . . hot water tank," Aya finished.

Yohji lay back down again, yawning. "I think we're going to have another day with a couple of very cranky lovebirds."

* * *

Omi just wanted the girls to go away.

His tolerance for them had just hit an all-time low. They were everywhere, simply everywhere, giggling, whispering, pushing each other to get his attention . . .

"Omi-kun," giggled a redhead in a navy blue jacket and skirt uniform, "I want another one of those pansy baskets."

"You bought three of them already," Omi reminded her.

"Well, what's wrong with a fourth?" the girl said.

Omi gritted his teeth. He wanted to yell at her, "Get a life! Why do you have to spend all day hanging around a flower trailer? Don't you have any boyfriends? Don't you have places to go? Don't you have anything in your life besides *us*?"

He took a deep breath, turning away from them. What's happening to me? he thought. I'm not like this! I've never treated the girls this way before! I've never even *thought* of them this way!

Taking another breath, he forced himself to calm down, then turned back to the girl.

"Sure," he said. "I'll get you another basket."

He was going to one of the back racks when he saw a familiar figure in spiked heels approach, briefcase in hand.

"Boys, I think you'd better close early today," she said. "We have a business meeting to go to."

Omi almost seemed relieved to see her. A mission, he thought, will at least take my mind off my frustration.

He brought the flowers back, took the girl's money, and said, "All right, ladies . . . we have to close for the day." He was greeted with a series of disappointed groans and scattered boos, but they began to disperse. Omi rushed into the trailer, hoping he didn't seem too eager.

Manx was setting up the video for the others. It definitely seemed odd for them to be getting their mission on the same TV they had watched Iron Chef on the night before.

"Our first mission as a road act," Yohji said, leaning back in his chair. "I feel like this is a special occasion."

"Nothing particularly special about this one," Manx said. "It *is* a group of dark beasts who need to be stopped, and soon."

Ken nearly dragged himself in, feeling like his energy had been drained from his body. He flopped down on the couch next to Omi. Usually, they'd smile at each other, maybe touch hands . . . but now, they just sat there, side-by-side.

"All right," Manx said, pressing the button to start the tape. The familiar image of the computer-generated Persia appeared, and the voice said, "Good afternoon, Weiss. An international smuggling ring that brings counterfeit goods into the United States for sale is operating out of the small airport in this town. This gang has been particularly ruthless in eliminating rivals, or anyone who might bring them to justice. They have already been responsible for the deaths of several policemen." The screen displayed pictures of the murdered bodies, and Omi winced. Persia wasn't kidding when he spoke of the brutality of these killers.

"The group is scheduled to make another transaction at the warehouse adjacent to the airport tonight," Persia continued. "White hunters, hunt the tomorrow of the dark beasts!"

Manx ejected the tape. "Are we all in?" she said.

Ken and Omi both said quickly, and in almost perfect unison, "I am!" This took everyone in the room by surprise . . . neither one usually accepted a mission without expressing shock or indignation at the activities of the criminals, as if they had to justify the killings to themselves.

"Well, if everyone else is so enthusiastic, I guess I'm in as well," said Yohji. Aya merely nodded in the affirmative.

"All right," said Manx, handing out information packets. "As it said on the tape, the next major transaction is tonight. The location of the warehouse is in here . . ."

Ken opened the folder and looked inside. A mission, he thought. Something to *focus* on. Something to keep me from thinking constantly about Omi, and how much I want him, and how much it seems impossible now . . .

He actually found himself indulging in a fantasy of them using the warehouse after the mission was completed, and mentally smacked himself. I'm not desperate enough that I'd do it at the site of a mission! he thought. Or . . . am I . . .

* * *

The boys crouched in the shadows outside the warehouse, watching the door.

"Geez, what are they waiting for?" Ken said. "We've been here for over two hours!"

"It's not as if we had an invitation," Aya retorted.

"Yeah, but still!" Ken slunk down a bit. "Kritiker's usually not this inaccurate about . . ."

"If I didn't know any better, I'd say you were eager for this mission, Ken," Yohji said, giving Ken a sly smile.

Ken wheeled on hiim. "What's that supposed to mean?"

"Well, you usually need a damn good reason to do this kind of thing," Yohji added. "Instead, we have two very eager pretty boys, who can't wait to . . ."

Omi put up his hand. The targets were arriving, and he was glad of it. He didn't want a full-blown brawl in the middle of a mission.

They're carrying boxes, he thought. They can't move too fast . . He left their hiding place and headed for the group, slowly . . .

Something flew through the air, and before Omi had time to react, it landed around his head, quickly pulling tight against his neck. He gasped, putting a hand up and pulling against it, trying to free himself . . .

"Who are you?" a gruff male voice said. It suddenly struck Omi how absurd it was to ask someone a question while attempting to strangle them. He reached for a dart, hoping to be able to break the rope . . .

Someone else broke it for him. The blade of a sword cut Omi free, as its owner said, firmly, "We are *Weiss*." As Omi managed to get the noose off him, he saw Aya pulling his katana from the thug's corpse.

"Concentrate, Omi," Aya said. "You could have been killed."

That's nothing anyone has ever had to say to me before, Omi thought, tossing the rope aside. "I'm fine, Aya-kun."

"We'll see about that," Aya said, walking into the warehouse proper.

Omi followed. I just got a little off that one time, he thought. But I'll be fine for the rest of the mission. I always am . . .

The room was almost in total darkness . . . except for a couple of dim lanterns at the far end. There was the sound of quiet talking, and boxes being moved around the floor. Omi held his crossbow at the ready, prepared to strike at any second . . .

He wasn't expecting the hulking henchman to slam into him with his entire body, sending Omi skidding across the floor. He tried to stop himself by putting out his hands . . . and slammed straight into a packing crate.

Twice, he thought. The targets got me twice in one mission! This has never happened before . . .

Meanwhile, Ken was struggling against another target, a lumpy-looking bald guy who was a lot faster than he looked. Every time Ken tried to swipe with his bugnuks, the target danced away from him, laughing.

"What's wrong, pretty boy?" he said in a voice that sounded like the wheeze of a dying car engine. "Can't get those shiny toys of yours to work?"

Dammit, Ken thought, I'm usually unbeatable against guys like him! Why have my reflexes slowed down? He attacked again . . . only to have the target dodge out of the way, like a bulfighter away from a charging toro. Ken nearly landed on the ground . . .

And then, he caught sight of Omi. The boy was across the room, looking open-mouthed at what had fallen out of that crate.

Sex toys. All shapes and sizes. Small, wandlike ones, enormous ones attached to strap-ons, double-headed ones . . .and ones that looked like a realistic erection, like the one that had landed right in front of Omi.

The boy was just staring, eyes open wide. And Ken could do nothing but stare himself. This was a reminder of everything they were denied, everything they couldn't share . . .

He saw the thug he had been trying to attack behind Omi, a stiletto raised in his hand. And Omi didn't even know he was there . . .

"OMI!" Ken shouted, and launched himself at the man, bugnuks drawn, ready for a kill . . .

The man moved away again, and Ken did crash to the ground this time, landing next to Omi, feeling dazed.

The criminal turned toward both of them with a smirk, reaching into his belt, pulling out a pair of switchblades, ready to attack both at once . . .

A wire flew through the air and wrapped around the man's neck. "Sorry," Yohji said, "but these two are not for fun and games, even when they're surrounded with toys." A tug on the strings, and the target slumped to the ground, lifeless.

"Yohji-kun . . ." Omi said, getting up. "Thank you . . ."

Yohji watched them clamber to their feet. "Hey, what was with you two tonight?" he said. "You were both acting like you *wanted* to be killed!"

"Guy was just too fast for me," Ken mumbled, getting up and brushing himself off.

Yohji frowned. He knew that wasn't the case. And he figured he had an idea as to what was wrong with Ken and Omi.

I never thought it was possible to die of lust, he thought. But they almost managed it tonight.

He began wishing like hell he could do something to help . . . but what could he do? Sure, he could give them a night alone in the trailer . . . but would that be enough?

He watched them start to walk away from the site of the mission, heads down, hands in their pockets. They knew they were a failure tonight, although the mission itself had been successful.

Of course, he thought, I always *could* turn on the charm with the one person who *can* help them . . .

* * *

Omi sat at his computer, his fingers moving slowly over the keys as he typed in the mission report. Usually, he did these in a flash . . . but it was almost distasteful to type in the data now.

Because, he thought, I can't stop kicking myself over last night. The mission was accomplished, but it was almost a disaster . . . because of Ken-kun and I.

Maybe, he thought, it's best that we just tell Kritiker and accept the consequences. They'll split us up . . . put us on two different teams . . . and it's probably for the best.

A sob rose in his throat and choked him. The idea of having to sacrifice his relationship with Ken, the brightest spot in what should have been a dark and troubled life, was unbearable. But it could literally be a matter of life and death.

He didn't hear Ken enter the trailer, didn't hear the quiet footsteps behind him. When Ken wrapped his arms around him, he jumped and gasped.

"Are you okay, Angel?" Ken said.

Omi just shook his head, looking down.

"I know it didn't go well. But we'll make up for it next time. We'll be used to living like this, and . . ."

Omi took a deep breath. "Ken-kun . . . maybe it's best if we . . . we let them separate us."

Ken pulled away from him abruptly, and Omi felt the loss of his warmth like the cold hand of death stealing over him.

"You . . . you can't mean that, Angel!" the older boy stammered.

"I do mean it," Omi said, swiveling his chair around. "We almost got killed last night, Ken-kun. We can't function as Weiss because we have our relationship . . . or the lack of a relationship, nowadays . . . on our minds all the time. So . . . maybe it would be best for both of us if . . . there was no relationship at all."

The words hit Ken like a series of grenades. Split up? He couldn't be serious! Their relationship was the only thing that kept him from falling completely apart!

He dropped down to his knees, gripping the arms of Omi's chair. "Listen, Omi! We can still find a way around this!"

"How?" said Omi. "Kritiker said they weren't going to buy us a second trailer."

"Who said we had to live in the trailer? Kritiker can get us some kind of apartment near the trailer, right?"

"We have to be ready to leave at a moment's notice," said Omi, looking down at the hands clasped in his lap. "Remember, half the reason we have this trailer is we're on the run from Schwarz."

Ken got up and started to pace. "There's gotta be something we can do! Maybe there's another hiding place outside . . . or a love hotel in the neighborhood . . ."

"No love hotels," Omi said, quietly. "I checked already."

"Or maybe . . . maybe . . ." Ken stalked toward the window like a tiger pacing its cage. Dammit, he thought, we've got to find something, somewhere! His eyes scanned the horizon. He saw a row of little stores, a small park, a public bathroom near the park . . .

His eyes stuck on the bathroom. He'd seen that from the window of the trailer late at night, when he had trouble falling asleep. And there were people coming in to use it, probably coming home from bars. It was, apparently, open 24 hours.

He pointed toward the bathrooms. "Omi . . . okay, it's not the most romantic of settings, but . . ."

Omi's head turned. "A public bathroom?"

"If we hit it between the hours between when people use the park . . . and when people are coming home from the bars . . . it should be empty. We'll lock ourselves in the stall, and just try to be quiet."

Omi frowned. It was definitely not the most pleasant of settings . . . in fact, it was probably the last place in the world he'd want to rendezvous with someone he loved.

But it was privacy. And it would do for a quickie, just to release the tension so they could think straight, and come up with a more long-term solution.

He took a deep breath. "All right."

Ken hugged him. "We'll slip out about 10 tonight, then. Don't worry, Omi . . . we *will* work this out. There's no way we'll have to separate."

Omi held him closer. Please, please, let this work, he thought. I can't lose him.

* * *

Aya watched Ken and Omi walk away from the trailer. He had no idea where they were going, they just said a quick "We're going out for a bit" and slipped out.

He could hear Yohji's voice from the stockroom, probably chatting to some woman he'd met on one of his late-night prowls on the cell phone. I shouldn't be surprised that our new living arrangements haven't changed *his* behavior at all, he thought.

He put down the book he was reading and walked over to Omi's computer. Maybe, tonight, he'd have better luck with his search.

Every time Ken and Omi went out somewhere, he'd been using Omi's computer to try to get into Kritiker's records, to see if they had any information as to what had happened to Yuushi.

A few clicks of the mouse brought him into the private BBS Omi used to file his mission reports. A few more brought up a menu of listings. He scanned them, looking for the ones he'd tried already. The obvious ones - "Crashers," "Red Skies" - had come up empty.

He'd tried to get into the recent mission reports filed by other Kritiker teams, but that just led to a brick wall. He'd manage to figure out one password, only to be met with a request for another password.

If I were the paranoid type, he thought, I'd be wondering whether they knew I was trying to get into their records. But I can't afford paranoia.

He knew that he still couldn't feel much of any kind of emotion, let alone paranoia. Even though his sister was alive and well and happy, it didn't help. He'd always thought that if Aya-chan came out of her coma, he'd feel like himself again.

It was quite the opposite. He felt the same as always. He even kept using his sister's name. Because he knew he couldn't be *Ran* again until he was back with Yuushi.

It had been a few months since he had saved Omi's life during the mission involving the radical right-wing group the Omega Guard. Since then, there had been no more signs of him.

Another series of windows opened on the screen. Aya scanned them, looking for any sign of all of the information he sought. Nothing helpful at all. It was as if Yuushi had never been a part of Kritiker.

There's got to be a way to find out, he thought. Even if I were to find out he were dead . . . at least I would know *for sure* what happened to him. The worst thing about all of this is the *not knowing*.

He looked away from the screen for a moment, and out the window. Ken and Omi had completely vanished from sight.

Hopefully, he thought, they've found some way to deal with their problem, he thought. Their frustration is going to literally kill all of us.

Aya turned back to the screen, clicking at yet another window.

In his own way, he was just as frustrated as they were.

* * *

Ken and Omi slipped into the men's room, peering around. There was no sign of other people.

"All right," Ken said. "We're lucky."

"I hope we stay lucky," Omi said, looking around. As public men's rooms go, it wasn't too horrifying. The tile was cracked, and the sinks a bit dingy, but at least it looked like it got regular scrubbings, and you could breathe without putting a hand over your nose and mouth.

"The stall down the end . . . that looks like the biggest one . . ." Ken grabbed Omi by the hand and led him along the row, pulling him behind the designated door. He closed and locked it behind him, pulled the younger boy into his arms, and began to kiss him, eagerly.

Meanwhile, across the street, Patrolman Isamu Tamiya sat in an unmarked car, watching the doorway. It fit the familiar pattern . . . two men went in together, and didn't come out after the normal time it took to use the facilities.

What a pain, Tamiya thought. He'd been forced to work this beat every night, ever since that jerk of a mayor decided that part of his reelection campaign platform would be cleaning up all the sexual corruption in this part of town. The love hotels had already been driven out, the Soapland put out of business, and now the police were being told to target the public bathrooms used as rendezvous spots for male prostitutes and their johns.

"The hell with the real crime," he grumbled. "We gotta spend all our time busting a bunch of guys who aren't getting any at home, so they hire pretty boys." Small wonder the air was filled with rumors of vigilante squads who took out the criminals the police couldn't catch. Tamiya doubted such a team really existed . . . he almost wish they did. "I'd probably join them," he muttered, as he hoisted his tall, broad body out of the car and headed for the facilities.

In the bathroom, Ken had Omi's shirt unbuttoned and was kissing the boy's neck, heading for his chest, as he fumbled with his zipper.

"Hurry," Omi panted. "I want to feel you touch me . . ."

"Just a second, Angel," Ken groaned, pushing his pants down. "Just a second, and then we can . . ."

Something slammed into the stall door, forcing the lock and pushing it inward. The boys jumped back, yelling, and Omi instinctively reached down for his pants and the emergency dart he kept in a pocket.

They found themselves facing a large man with close-cropped navy blue hair, a trenchcoat, a badge and a gun.

"Police!" he barked. "You're under arrest for solicitation!"

"For . . . WHAT?" said Omi.

"Don't you play innocent," Tamiya shouted . . . he'd heard this act a million times before. "Tell your story at the station! Now, zip it up and move it!"

Ken and Omi looked at each other. Their situation had gone from bad to worse. Now they were the last place in the world they ever wanted to be . . . about to be hauled into a police station.

Because if they could be connected to Kritiker in any way, it would mean their executions . . . and probably the deaths of everyone else in the organization as well.

* * *

The car screeched into the police station parking lot, and the driver got out, her high heels clicking on the asphalt.

It's a good thing Yohji talked to me about the situation, she thought. She'd arrived at the trailer to talk to Ken and Omi a half-hour ago, only to find them gone, and the other two having no knowledge as to where they went.

She'd been walking out of the trailer and back to her car when the police car had sped past her, with the two familiar figures in the back.

These boys know better than to try any kind of investigations or anti-criminal activity not authorized by us, she thought. So they must have been up to something else . . . and I think I know what it was.

She approached the desk. These suburban police departments were so primitive compared to the main Tokyo office . . . there was just a few battered desks and a couple of antiquated computer terminals. She was used to something that more closely resembled the United States Pentagon, with high-tech equipment as far as the eye can see.

A clerk was sitting at one desk, a heavyset woman in her mid-30s reading a "ladies' comics" manga magazine. She looked up at Manx and made a face, as if having to actually do her job was distasteful. She got up and shambled toward the counter, walking like she had all night.

"Can I help you?" she said in a bored voice.

Manx held up the police badge which Shuichi Takatori had given her a long time ago. "I believe there's been some kind of misunderstanding. You've arrested a couple of our special officers."

"Huh? You mean those kids? Sorry, they're not special operatives. They had no police identification on them at . . ."

"Well, then I believe I'm going to have to reprimand them," Manx said, crossly. "But that still doesn't change the fact that they were arrested in the middle of an investigation."

The clerk folder her arms. "What would the Tokyo police want with this town?"

"We're trying to catch an international prostitution ring, which may have one of its bases here," Manx said. "Those boys are part of the investigation. Now, let them out . . . or do I have to put my boss in touch with your boss?"

The clerk backed off at that one . . . she started to look very worried indeed. Manx suspected she'd been in trouble with her higher-ups several times before.

"Not a problem," she said. "I'll get them."

She watched as the boys were led out from the holding cell. "These the ones you mean?" the clerk said.

"Yes, those are our operatives," Manx said. "Thank you." To Ken and Omi, she said, "Come with me. I'll speak to you back at headquarters."

The boys looked at each other. This is what they had been dreading. Manx would reprimand them, then separate them for good.

As they left the station and settled into the back seat of their car, Ken reached for Omi's hand and squeezed it as they braced themselves.

There was a moment of stony silence as Manx pulled out. Then, she said, "I've known about your relationship for a long time, you know."

The boys' heads swiveled as they looked at each other, then up at her. "You . . . you have?" Omi said.

Manx glanced at them as she stopped for a red light. "I have eyes and ears, Omi. I've watched how you two behave with each other at the mission briefings. You may think you kept a tight lid on your feelings, but . . . there were times when your eyes would meet, or one of you would lean over to touch the other's hand when you thought I wasn't looking. And I can tell."

Ken leaned over the seat. "You knew . . . and you didn't tell anyone above you in Kritiker?"

There was another pause. Then, Manx said, "I've been in your position, Ken. I know what it's like to be in love, and have to hide it."

An image filled her head of the only man she'd ever loved . . . Shuichi Takatori, the man the boys had known only as Persia. They'd carried on a secret relationship for years, hidden from the eyes of police department and Kritiker officers alike, fearful she'd be accused of sleeping her way into her position.

"Manx?" Omi said, quietly. He wondered who the man in question was . . . although he had his suspicions. She worked very closely with my uncle, didn't she? he thought.

"Never mind," she said in a voice that sounded a bit choked. "It's not important." She pulled into the parking lot next to the trailer. "What *is* important is that Yohji contacted me . . . he was concerned about you. So, at his suggestion, I've made arrangements to get you some privacy."

Ken and Omi looked at each other, faces alight with surprise and joy. "You . . . you have?" said Omi, nearly leaping into the front seat. "What kind of arrangements?"

"There's a small hotel a few blocks from here," Manx said. "You probably didn't know about it . . . it's not well-marked, or well-advertised. It caters mainly to people who want to visit their relatives in this town, but can't bear to actually stay with them. I've established an account for you there. Don't use it every night, but . . . it will give you a rendezvous spot a couple of times a week."

Omi wanted to hug her. "Thank you! Thank you!"

"We have to make sure your needs are provided for, you know," she said. "You can start using it tomorrow night."

"Manx . . . thank you so much," Ken said, feeling choked up. It was almost too good to be true. Manx knew about them . . . she didn't care . . . and finally, they were going to have a place to make love!

"Now, get some rest," Manx said. "And, Omi . . . I hope you E-mailed me your mission report."

"Yes!" he said, hopping out of the car with Ken. They grasped hands, waved goodbye to Manx and nearly ran toward the trailer. They knew they were going to sleep well that night . . . because they needed their energy for tomorrow.

* * *

Ken pulled the last of the dishes out of the dishwasher and put it back in the cabinet. Omi was in the bathroom, already getting ready to leave.

"Guys, we're going out," Ken told Yohji and Aya, who were back in the inventory room, checking their supplies. "Don't wait up."

"Well," Yohji said, hanging a flower basket back up. "Looks like you two have discovered the clubbing life."

Ken felt himself turning red. "Um, not exactly."

"Hey, if you need any advice on picking up women, just ask me," Yohji said, picking up another basket.

Ken took a step backward. "I don't need advice!"

"Ken-kun," Omi said from behind him, "are you ready to go?"

"Ready," Ken said. "We'll probably see you in the morning." He rushed out of the inventory room and opened the closet, grabbing a black bag he had secretly packed that morning. He didn't want Omi to see its contents . . . there was a surprise in there.

Omi almost hopped out of the trailer after him. "I can't believe this place was just a couple of blocks away all along, and we never knew about it!"

"Manx said they don't publicize it," Ken said, grasping his hand. "Gods, if she didn't find us last night . . ."

Omi shook his head. "We're not going to think about that, Ken-kun. We're just going to enjoy tonight."

Ken suddenly threw an arm around Omi's waist and squeezed him tightly. "I just can't wait to get my hands on you!"

Omi laughed. "Ken-kun! You've waited this long, you can wait a few minutes longer!"

"No, I can't! Gods, you make me nuts . . ."

Omi pulled away from him and started running. "You're going to get us arrested again!" he yelled over his shoulder.

"Oh, you're running away?" Ken said, starting to run himself. "Well, I'm going to catch you!"

The two ran along the sidewalk, laughing, oblivious to the curious looks of passerby . . . until they reached what looked like two houses fused together, joined by a windowed corridor half the height of the two buildings.

"This is it," Ken said. "You wait out here, I'll get us checked in . . ."

Omi stood on the sidewalk, feeling a bit breathless. Finally, he thought. It's going to happen. Ken-kun is going to come back, and we're going to go in the room, and . . . we'll be together. Naked, hot, moaning . . . A shudder of desire passed through him. He had to concentrate to keep from being visibly aroused then and there.

Ken came out, twirling a key around his finger. "This is it," he said. "The building over there, second floor."

They began walking rapidly . . . not quite running, but definitely not a normal stroll, either. When they reached their destination, they took the steps at a brisk jog, and Ken's fingers fumbled as he unlocked the door.

He pushed it open, and they got a look at their surroundings. It was rather plain, with beige walls, a dark wood dresser with an oval mirror, a couple of chairs, and a queen-sized four-poster covered with a blue floral print, quilted spread.

To them, it was the most beautiful room they had ever seen in their lives.

The door closed and locked behind them. They looked at each other, their breath caught . . . Ken pulled Omi into his arms . . . and almost instantly, they were kissing, hard, wet, insistent, running their hands along each other's backs. Their mouths opened quickly, tongues reaching for each other and colliding. Omi lifted a leg, hooking it over Ken's hip, and both began grinding their pelvises, desperate to feel, to experience what they had been denied for so long.

Omi leaned his head back, moaning, and Ken began to nibble along his neck, tiny, hot nips that sent small pulses of electric heat through the younger boy. When he swept his tongue from the bottom of his neck to the top and back again, Omi's knees sagged and his whole body went limp.

"I need you," he whispered, hoarsely. "I need you so much . . ."

"Gods, Angel, get out of those clothes now," Ken growled, reaching back to grab Omi's bottom and give it a firm squeeze. Both of them knew this first coupling was going to be hard and fast, a release for the pent-up passion.

Omi yanked his shirt over his head, then tugged at Ken's, wishing he could make the damn thing just disappear. Pants and underwear landed on the floor seconds later, and they threw their arms around each other again, mouths colliding like two freight trains, their tongues tangling and stroking with urgency. Omi slid a hand between their bodies and over Ken's chest, finding a nipple and gently squeezing it between thumb and forefinger. Ken let out a deep moan.

"Angel," he panted, "do that again and I may come right now."

"Come inside me, then," Omi purred.

Ken pulled away from his lover, grasping him by the shoulders, spinning him around and pushing him down so Omi was bent over, head and arms leaning on the bed. He positioned his legs so they were spread just far enough, then reached in his bag for the lubricant and condoms. His fingers trembled with desire as he got the rubber out of the package and put it on, then coated it with the gel.

He wanted to ram himself into the boy right away, but he gritted his teeth and forced himself to be patient. Coating his fingers, he slipped one gently inside Omi, the boy's deep groan just serving to heighten his own desire.

Omi felt the finger leave him, and he felt hollow inside . . .but it pushed back in, along with a second, and Omi let out another loud moan. The small amount of pain didn't even matter . . . the sensation of being filled was so, so good, he'd missed it so much . . .

He felt Ken grasp his bottom and position himself, then start to slide in, slowly . . too slowly . . . Omi's hands gripped the bedspread as the pain came, and he willed it to go away quickly so Ken could take him, *really* take him. Another thrust . . . slowly . . . and then Ken pushed in hard and fast, and Omi felt a wave of tingling heat burst over him, radiating outward from his passage to the very tips of his fingers.

"Ken!" he cried. "Please . . . please *do it*!"

"Oh, love . . ." Ken moaned . . . he thought he'd go mad from the pleasure of the boy's tight, hot sheath gripping him. He began to thrust . . . hard and fast, holding nothing back, leaning his head back and letting out a deep moan as the pleasure intensified, multiplying over and over. He leaned back over him, his chest against Omi's back, skin slick with sweat rubbing together as he buried his head in the juncture of Omi's neck and shoulder, panting and groaning.

Omi bucked under his lover, raising his hips over and over to meet every thrust, trying to drive Ken as deeply into him as possible. A knot of heat was building deep within him, getting bigger and hotter by the second, and all he wanted was release, release . . .

As their bodies continued to move frantically, Ken kissed Omi's ear, teasing the hole with his tongue, thrusting it in and out to the same rhythm as his manhood, and Omi's moans grew louder, his breathing heavier, as his whole body started to tremble.

When Ken took the lobe in his teeth, biting gently, that did it. The knot within Omi exploded, flooding his entire body with electricity as he cried out his lover's name, shuddering over and over until he sagged to the mattress, limp.

Ken thrust again, and again, and suddenly his own body began to shudder with heat, wave after wave of tingling sensation crashing over him until he felt drained.

He fell on the bed beside Omi. His lover turned to him, and they grasped hands and kissed, tenderly. No words were spoken. None were needed.

Ken pulled away just long enough to dispose of the condom, then get a towel to clean both of them up. Omi, purring contentedly, was already asleep.

Ken stroked his hair. Gods, he thought, I don't know if it ever felt so good to touch him before. I think I had taken it for granted, being able to make love to him whenever I wanted. Well, never again.

He snuggled against his lover, and drifted off as well.

* * *

Omi woke up and snuggled closer against Ken. How long have we been asleep? he wondered. A quick glance at the clock reassured him it had only been a couple of hours. He didn't want to waste this night.

He began to gently kiss Ken's closed eyelids, his cheeks and nose. When his lover's eyes fluttered open, he kissed his lips as well.

Ken hugged Omi close, yawning. "Hey, there, Angel. Gods, I love waking up next to you."

"I hope we'll be able to do that every morning again," Omi said. "I don't want to stay in that trailer forever."

"Eh, Kritiker will get tired of that soon enough," Ken said, stroking Omi's hair. "Then we'll have our old flower shop back, and you and I can get a place of our own." He kissed Omi's lips, gently. "But . . . enough about the trailer. We have other things to think about."

Omi smiled, blushing a bit. "What kind of other things?"

"Like the reason you woke me up." Ken kissed Omi's neck. "I do think it's because you want more of what you had earlier. Am I right? Hmm?"

Omi turned crimson. "Ken . . ."

"Ah, you do want more!" Ken said, running a hand back and forth over the boy's stomach. "You called me just 'Ken,' not 'Ken-kun' or 'Ken-Ken.' You only do that when you want to play."

Omi just blushed some more.

"It's okay," Ken said, rolling away from him. "We can play now. We have time. Watch . . ."

He reached into his bag and took out four glass pillar candles, putting two on each nighttable. He lit them, turned out the lights and crawled across the bed back toward his lover, pulling into his arms and kissing him hard. Omi responded eagerly, pushing his tongue into Ken's mouth as their arms wrapped tightly around each other.

Ken rolled both of them over so he was on top, his mouth caressing Omi's as his hands swept up and down the boy's sides, tickling his ribs a bit, making him shiver. His mouth moved downward, leaving little nipping kisses on his jawline, then down his neck.

Omi moaned as Ken's teeth scraped lightly along his pulse line, then his lips left tiny, maddening kisses there. His body stretched and arched upward, urging him to kiss lower. He was taken aback for a moment when Ken pulled away, only to feel his mouth, hot and wet and incredible, close over a nipple.

Omi began to writhe, tangling his fingers in Ken's hair as the older boy sucked at the little bud, pulling back to run his tongue slowly, lovingly across it, back and forth, then sucking again.

"Ken!" he cried. "Ohh! Gods!"

Ken pulled back. "Angel . . . I have something I want to show you."

No! Omi thought. Don't show me anything! I want your mouth on me again! I want your mouth all over my body!

But Ken was going into his bag, rummaging around and pulling something out . . . which he held below the bed level, out of Omi's view.

"When we were on that last mission," Ken said, "I brought something back. I didn't know if I'd ever get the chance to use it, but I wanted it on hand, just in case . . ."

Omi looked at him quizzically. "What is it?"

Ken raised his hand, and Omi gasped. He was holding what looked like a disembodied erection . . . except it had a wire coming from its base, attached to a battery pack and controller.

"Are you curious, Angel?" Ken said. "Do you want to know what one of these feels like . . . what it can do?"

Omi just stared at it, turning red. A sex toy? he thought. I never, ever thought about sex toys! Even during the mission . . . I was just staring at them because they reminded me of Ken . .

But he became aware of another emotion deep inside him, and that made him blush even more. A wonderment about what that would feel like inside him, whether it would feel different than Ken . . .

That . . . that's like cheating! he thought. But . . . it's not really cheating if Ken's the one using it on me, is it?

Slowly, his head bobbed up and down, nodding in the affirmative.

Ken leaned over and kissed him. "Lay back, sweetheart . . . relax . . . this will be good, I promise you."

Omi obeyed, closing his eyes, feeling his heart pound in anticipation. It was a long time since he'd been facing the complete unknown when it came to sex, and he was feeling like a total virgin all over again.

Ken turned the vibrator on, putting it on a low setting, and Omi heard a low buzz that sounded a bit like an electric razor. He kissed Omi's lips, and then touched the toy to the nipple his mouth had just been pleasuring.

Omi jumped a bit and gasped. The sensation was a concentrated point of tingling pleasure that shot through his whole body like a rocket.

"Ah, you like that, don't you?" Ken said, teasingly. He moved the vibrator to the other nipple, doing the same, and Omi cried out again as Ken moved it in tiny circles on the nub. "This is just the beginning."

He took the toy away and turned it off, and his fingers began to slide, with maddening slowness, down Omi's stomach. He tickled the flesh, swirling his fingers around and around, making Omi let out a deep groan of frustration.

"Do you want my hand here?" he said, his fingers brushing, feather light, across Omi's erection.

Omi let out a strangled cry. "Yes!"

"No," Ken said, withdrawing the fingers. "I don't think I'll put my hand there."

Omi groaned in disappointment, his whole body flushed, covered with a sheen of sweat, as desire built and built within him.

"I'll put something else there instead," Ken said, touching the head of the sex toy to the head of Omi's erection. He turned it on, and the shock of pleasure made Omi feel like the top of his head was going to blow off.

Ken moved the buzzing device in slow circles over the head, leaning over to lick at a nipple as he moved it down over the shaft, the buzzing mingling with Omi's whimpers of pleasure. He raised his head and looked at his lover's face, eyes shut, mouth open in an O, cheeks flushed . . . Ken thought he'd never seen Omi look more beautiful.

"Good?" he said, teasing the base of Omi's hardness with the toy as his other hand played with a nipple, running his thumb over the bud, then squeezing it gently between thumb and forefinger.

"Ooohhh!!" Omi cried. "So good . . sooo good, please don't stop . . ."

"Do you want me to make it feel even better?" Ken said, moving the toy down to the sac beneath his erection, moving it around it slow circles that made Omi give another loud moan, raising his legs and hips to give Ken better access.

"B-b-better?" Omi panted. I can't see how it can possibly get better than this! he thought.

"You watch," said Ken, taking the dildo away and turning it off. Omi groaned, but in frustration this time.

"Don't worry," Ken said, as he rolled another condom onto the toy. "Relax . . . it'll just be a second . . ."

Omi heard the squish of the lubrication tube and he thought he'd explode. He didn't know when he'd ever felt so hot. Every nerve seemed to be on fire, every centimeter of his body tingling and hyper-sensitive.

Ken's finger pushed inside Omi, and he moved against it, wanting it deeper inside, as deep as Ken could put it. His groans must have told Ken how much he wanted it, because the second finger followed quickly, moving in and out, just making Omi grip the sheets harder, moan even louder.

And then, something was pushing at his entrance . . . it was a similar size and shape as Ken's erection, but different . . . a bit broader, a bit harder. Omi felt the familiar pain as it slid in, but it went away quickly.

"Hmm," Ken said. "I think I'll start on slow . ."

He turned the switch, and Omi nearly screamed. It was vibrating from the inside, a hot tingle more intense than anything he'd ever experienced, taking every sensation and multiplying it a thousandfold. He moaned and tossed his head side to side.

"Let's see how that feels when I move it," Ken said, and started a slow thrust, in and out, around and around a bit here, a bit there . . . buzzing on different points of Omi's passage, looking for the sweet spots.

"Ken!" Omi cried. "Gods! That's so . . . so . . ."

"Good, isn't it?" Ken said, thrusting rapidly, reaching up with his other hand to stroke and caress his nipples. "You like having it inside you, don't you?"

"Yes!" Omi cried. "Please, please don't stop!" He felt it fill him again, buzzing, vibrating, sending shock waves through his whole body, then retreat, letting sanity return for a second . . . then it thrust into him again, purring, and Omi could only purr along with it, his blood feeling like it had turned to lava.

"Mmm," Ken said, leaning over and beginning to lick along Omi's erection as he continued to push the buzzing toy in and out. He slid his lips down over the head, taking it in as far as he could until he began to pick up the rhythm with the dildo.

"OoooOoohhh!!!" Omi cried, writhing uncontrollably, thinking he was going to explode, that his brain and body couldn't take so much sensation, that he was about to die from sheer pleasure. Wet . . Omi thought. Hot and wet . . . delicious . . . and. . . on top of the other . . .

And when the vibrator hit his sweetest spot . . . the spot right over his prostate . . . he shrieked.

Ken raised his head. "Hmm. . . right here, is it?" He put pressure on that particular spot again, moving the toy in a tight circle, making Omi cry out louder.

"All right, Angel," Ken said. "Relax . . . it's going to get even better." His mouth closed over the head again, and he flicked the vibrator onto "high," thrusting it in quick, small strokes that stimulated his sweet spot over and over

Omi gasped . . . ohh, gods, oh gods, oh gods . . . and thrust his hips . . and writhed . . . the sensations were colliding in his brain, the heat and wetness, the suction, the vibrating, the tingling and pleasure and madness . . . The world froze in place along with Omi's breath, and then, it exploded.

"AAAHHH!!!" he screamed, his small body wracked with pulses of heat so intense he thought he'd set the bed afire. He arched upward, like a dolphin arcing out of the water, again and again, as more and more fiery waves flooded him, as he felt, yes, yes, it's over now, and then yet another was upon him, making him cry out anew as he was flooded with more delicious sensation.

Finally, he collapsed onto the bed, trembling, whimpering, tears running down his face. Tenderly, Ken slid the toy out of him as he swallowed Omi's essence, then turned it off. He pulled his lover into his arms and kissed him, noticing he was trembling as never before.

"Are you okay, love?" Ken said.

Omi's eyes opened, slowly. "Yes," he whispered, kissing Ken's lips. "Thank you. That was . . . gods . . . it wasn't like anything I ever experienced . . ."

"It was intense, wasn't it?" Ken pulled away long enough to pull off the condom and clean the toy, and Omi couldn't help but notice he still had a full erection.

He smiled to himself. Maybe, he thought, I can return the favor.

"Do you want to know what it felt like?" Omi said.

Ken was a little startled -- he hadn't expected that. He figured Omi would pleasure him with his mouth, or that he'd end up giving himself release. Omi's getting bolder, he thought.

He handed over the toy. "Do you know what to do with it? You have to put a condom on it first, and use a *lot* of lube, more than you would with normal lovemaking."

"I will," Omi said. He leaned over and kissed Ken's lips, then neck, then moved down to his nipples, sucking on one gently. Ken let out a small moan as the boy's lips tugged at him, his tongue lashed at the little bud.

Omi kissed down Ken's stomach, then pulled away just long enough to prepare the toy, putting the condom on it and a little lubricant. He switched it on low and touched it to the right side of Ken's erection . . . as his tongue began to caress the left side.

Ken let out a deep groan, the combination of sensations so intense he thought he was going to come right away. But he gripped the sheets, getting control of himself . . . which he almost lost again when Omi moved the vibrator slowly down his shaft, continuing to lap at the head. When he reached the base, he swirled it around a little, making Ken moan loudly, tossing his head around.

Then, the vibrator moved slowly upward, the tongue swept slowly downward, and Ken almost lost it again. "Omi!" he cried.

Omi ran the toy around the head, making slow circles as he kissed and licked at the base. He's close, he thought. I should make my move . . .

He pulled both mouth and toy away, quickly coated the device with lubrication, and did the same to a finger, bringing it to Ken's opening, massaging it gently, coaxing it to open.

Ken let out a moan as Omi's finger pushed inside him, and he couldn't wait for the boy to open him up, to make him ready, to put that lovely toy inside him. The finger left him, and was pushed back in, along with a second, and Ken let out a low, pleading moan.

"Do you want it?" Omi said, teasingly, showing Ken the vibrator.

"Yes!" Ken gasped. "Please . . ."

It slid into him slowly, and Ken gritted his teeth against the pain . . . unfortunately, that part of it was still like having a human erection inside him. He must have grimaced, because Omi said, "Are you all right?"

"Yes," Ken gasped. "Don't stop!"

Omi began a slow thrust, and Ken could only lean back and moan . . . gods, this was so incredible! His whole body seemed to be vibrating, throbbing with pleasure, and even the tips of his toenails felt ready to burst into flame.

"More!" he gasped. "Faster . . . harder . . ."

Omi increased his stroke, leaning over to lick at Ken's nipples, taking one in his mouth and sucking hard. He wanted to give his lover as much pleasure as he'd been given, and Ken's groans and panting were beautiful, beautiful sounds to him.

"Gods," Ken groaned. "Omi! This is . . . this is . . ."

"I love you, Ken," Omi whispered, kissing his lips, his neck, then lowering his head to suck a nipple again. He turned the vibrator on high and began to thrust it hard with one hand; the other encircled Ken's erection, stroking it rapidly, wanting to give him just enough to bring him over the edge . . .

Ken made one long, low sound of pleasure after another, his body twisting and writhing under the triple assault, moaning, sighing, thrusting his hips up into Omi's hand, down onto the throbbing dildo, and always that hot, wet little mouth, teasing and licking and sucking and nipping . . .

And then, Ken was shouting his lover's name, and he was being wracked by spasms of pleasure more intense than anything he'd dared even dream of before, liquid fire flooding him over and over until his entire body was limp.

He lay on the bed, panting, feeling warm and soft and dreamy, not to mention a bit dizzy. Dimly, he felt Omi kissing him, Omi's fingers gently cleaning the seed from his stomach.

When he was done, Omi snuggled against Ken and pulled the covers over them both. They kissed, tenderly.

"I love you," Omi said.

"I love you too, Angel," said Ken. "That was worth waiting for, wasn't it?"

"Mmmm," said Omi, nestling onto his lover's chest.

"Next time," said Ken, "I'll make off with a two-headed one!"

"WHAAA?" Omi lifted his head. "What would we want with THAT?"

"So we could use it at the same time."

Omi wrinkled his nose. "I think I like taking turns better."

Ken laughed and kissed him again. "I'm only kidding, Angel."

They snuggled up into each other's arms and drifted off to sleep, the soft candlelight flickering over their faces.

* * *

"Thanks! Come again!" Omi called out to the last customer, waving to her as she walked away, centerpiece basket in hand.

"You look like you're in a better mood today," Yohji remarked as he began to pull in the outdoor racks.

"Oh, I am," Omi said, grabbing another rack and helping him. "I guess I'm . . . just getting used to living in this trailer."

"Oh, yes, I'm sure that's it," Yohji said, smiling to himself. He definitely owned Manx one. It was going to be a lot more peaceful for all of them now.

Ken began to count the till. "Looks like we took in more today than we have for the rest of the week!" he said.

"Maybe that had something to do with the fact that you didn't snap at the customers today," Aya said, coolly, putting the rest of the racks away.

"Hey!" Ken said, slamming the money box shut. "You're one to talk! I never see you being a ball of social fire!"

Aya felt a quick stab of pain at that . . . he didn't want to be a ball of social fire. There was only one person in the world he wanted, and he wasn't going to give up on finding him again. But he shrugged, and said, "I don't normally have girls adding '-chan' to my name, either."

Omi watched the other two go back into the trailer, then he grabbed Ken around the waist and hugged him. "We *did* have a good day today, didn't we?"

"I can't remember the last time I felt so relaxed," Ken replied. He tickled Omi's ear a bit. "Guess that means toys aren't just for kids, doesn't it?"

Omi turned crimson. "Ken-kun! Not out loud!"

"All right, all right," Ken laughed.

Omi leaned against him. "I wish we could do that every night."

"Well, we can't . . . not for now, at least. But . . ."

Omi raised his head. "But?"

"We have to make up for lost time . . . so when I signed us in last night, it was for *two* nights. We have the room again tonight."

Omi hugged him. "Ken-kun!"

"Now . . . it's been a *long* time since we did a 69. I think that'll be the highlight of the night."

Omi got a mischievous gleam in his eye. "Unless I have something else in mind."

Ken looked interested. "Something else?"

"Oh . . . you'll see." Omi started to wander back toward the trailer.

Ken chased after him. "Hey! What is it? At least give me a hint! Omi!"

Aya watched them impassively from the kitchen window. "At least they'll be easier to live with now," he said.

More than that, Yohji thought. They're back to the guys we know and love again. Amazing what a good, hard orgasm will do for you.

He figured it would be another quiet night around there, Ken and Omi off to their love nest, Aya turning in early. And he himself was going to go partying again. But not without a phone call first.

"I think," he muttered to himself, "that Manx should get *me* a love nest, too!"




The basic concept of this story, and the central idea for the lemon scene, came from online discussions I had with my friend Lady Cosmos. This story is dedicated to her, because she made it all possible.

Thanks also to my editor, Steve Savage, and my friends Sonya-chan and Cheyne. And thanks tons to all the people who've told me how much they love my Weiss work! It's because of you that I decided to return to this fandom after a year without writing any Weiss.

I'd also like to thank Media Blasters for doing a good job with the subtitled official release of Weiss, and for finally giving fans a chance to see what the seiyuu are saying in those "fooling around in the studio" segments! Yes, now the entire English-speaking fandom knows about Seki's fascination with porn queens!

Weiss Kreuz is owned by Koyasu Takehito and Project Weiss. These characters ain't mine, I'm just borrowing them for a little while.