Summary: Yuto and Keito get the most ridiculous Valentine's Day photoshoot concept, but the camera never lies.
AN: Tomochoco for Ri, and I guess anniversary present too since that's coming up soon. Prompt 27: Both single, A-kun and B-kun decide to hang out together for Valentine's Day. Their bromance becomes a romance.
The rest of JUMP all point and laugh at their Valentine's Day photoshoot assignment, and Yuto can't really blame them. Yabu and Takaki got sexy date, Yamada and Chinen got cute date, and Hikaru, Inoo, and Daiki got fun date.
Yuto and Keito are stuck with romantic date.
"Yeah, yeah, assholes, laugh it up," Yuto blusters at them, making them all laugh harder while the staff person tries futilely to get the meeting back on track. Across the conference table, Keito is shaking his head, bemused.
"It's like some kind of rom-com setup," Keito tells him when they can talk about it later. "Is this where you tell me you've really loved me all along and then trip and fall into my arms?"
"Who would fall in love with your weird face?" Yuto retorts easily as they fall into step on the way to dance practice.
"If you fell into my arms you'd probably crush me," Keito says, then yelps when Yuto punches him hard in the arm. It starts a scuffle that only lasts a couple seconds, because Yabu strolls through the middle of it and yanks the back of their shirt collars like a cat scruffing her kittens.
"Awwww, it's like a middle school crush," Yamada calls, making Chinen and Hikaru both hoot with laughter. Yuto vows to put all of Chinen's things on the top shelf in the lockers.
At least they say that Yuto can take his own pictures, so they can just go out normally instead of trailing a photographer along with them. It's weird enough that Yuto has to go on a romantic date with his best friend and bring back evidence; the last straw would be if a middle-aged man was tagging along taking pictures of it. That's what the paparazzi is for.
They decide on a date at a cafe, and then a walk through the park to get ice cream. Keito insists the ice cream is a key component.
"But it's freezing!" Yuto protests, shouldering his camera bag.
"That's what's romantic about it," Keito insists. "Trust me, girls eat that shit up. It's quixotic."
"Yeah, you'd know what girls eat," Yuto says with a roll of his eyes. "And don't use your made-up English words on me!" Keito just laughs and says yes he does, yes he does. Then both of them put on three more layers because it's mid-December, which is when popular idols go on Valentine's Day dates for magazine shoots, obviously.
Keito has to argue with the cafe barista for five minutes to get a hot cocoa with a heart drawn on top instead of a Christmas tree, which Yuto is still laughing about when he tries to take the first set of pictures.
"You're making me all blurry!" Keito complains. Yuto kicks him under the table and the next one is crystal clear but definitely not going in a magazine since it's obvious what curse word Keito is mouthing. Yuto admires it with pride on the digital display, thinking about putting it up in his bedroom for posterity.
"I know I'm hot, but hand it over, we need some shots of you too." Keito holds out his hand. Yuto makes a distressed face at handing his baby over, but Keito is right after all. He pries Yuto's camera out of his hands with only a token struggle. "And don't lecture me about your f-stops, you kinky freak."
"That's a real camera thing!" Yuto protests. Keito snaps a shot of his indignant face, and Yuto spends the next gives minutes blinking the flash spots out of his eyes.
Fully caffeinated, outside on their walk through the park, the camera shots get progressively more ridiculous. Keito blows the sleaziest kiss possible at the camera, and then does a fake slow-motion run at Yuto before stealing the camera back. Yuto takes his revenge by hollering that Yuto is a cheater and a cad and slept with his sister and also their homeroom teacher, and then when a handful of passersby are staring at them openly, Yuto hooks his arm through Keito's and they stroll off for their ice cream.
Keito gives Yuto a bite of his Strawberry Cream and doesn't want any of Yuto's Mint Popping Showers, and Yuto announces to everybody else in the 31 Flavors that this is the best date he's ever been on, hands-down.
"Wait until I start using my hands," Keito says, making Yuto choke laughing on his next bite.
A few days later, Yuto is going through the pictures on his laptop, trying to decide which ones he wants to submit to the magazine staff, when Yamada plops down beside him on the dressing room couch.
"Rough night, pal?" Yuto asks, sparing half a glance for Yamada's unbuttoned silk shirt and Snoopy-print boxers.
"Shut up, I can't get on my photoshoot pants without help and Chinen's too short to have enough leverage ," Yamada says. He glances at Yuto's screen. "And you're too busy putting together a creepy slideshow about your boyfriend."
"It's for the magazine shoot, asshole," Yuto says easily. Yamada's cheek comes to rest on Yuto's shoulder, and the two of them sit peacefully for a whole minute whole Yuto clicks through his favorites again.
"You know…" Yamada says, and Yuto expects him to mouth a couple more insults or something. He is not expecting at all for Yamada to say, "Keito looks different when you photograph him."
"The hell does that even mean?" Yuto asks. On his screen, Keito is blowing on his coffee, long fingers curled possessively around the cafe mug. "He looks like Keito."
"No, it's…" Yamada trails off, apparently not able to put what he means into words. Yuto shrugs him off, preoccupied with his task. It's hard to pick just a couple when he wants to tell more of the story, and Yuto wonders if Shige always feels like this when he tries to put together his column.
Gradually the others drift in and out, also getting dressed and complaining about photoshoot assignments. All of them praise Yuto's photographs, and Yuto beams from the praise like a tropical plant soaking up sunshine.
"These are really good!" Hikaru says, and Yuto doesn't even care that Hikaru's usual volume is making him deaf in one ear. "You look okay, but Keito looks like a professional did these, and they aren't photoshopped or anything! Wo~w!"
"Thanks, thanks," Yuto brushes him off, because he does need that ear for singing, probably. Inoo leans in beside Hikaru, and Yuto just hands him the laptop because he needs to get dressed himself and Yamada still can't get his pants on with the power of 7 combined.
Inoo has a funny look on his face when he hands the laptop back to Yuto, making Yuto ask him what's up.
"That's how you really see him," Inoo says, and it's on the tip of Yuto's tongue to say something flip, but Inoo's serious expression stops him.
"Well…yeah," Yuto says. They're pictures from his point of view, aren't they? Shouldn't they necessarily be how Yuto sees Keito? Inoo doesn't try to explain any further, just nods and pats Yuto's shoulder and goes on his way. Yuto shakes his head, long used to being surrounded by weirdos.
For some reason, when Yuto goes to get the staff's opinion on which pictures to submit, Yamada tags along. Yuto asks him if he doesn't have some hot frontman shit to do or something, but Yamada says nope, they got enough of him that morning while he was packed into those photoshoot pants.
"Too bad we didn't have vocal practice after, I could have hit a high E," Yamada says, making Yuto snort.
"You couldn't hit a high E with three boxes and a ladder," Yuto says with affection. Yamada helpfully lets go of the door so that it swings into Yuto's face.
The staff member is full of just as much praise as the other members, enough so that Yuto starts to get a little embarrassed about it after all.
"We just had fun, is all," he protests. He's pleased to see that his favorite is the first one the staff member picks, though. It's the picture of Keito blowing on his coffee, cheeks still a little flushed from being outside, eyes partly shut.
"I like this one, though," Yamada speaks up suddenly, tapping the arrow key forward. The next shot is only slightly different, with Keito's face turned a little more towards the camera, his eyes on Yuto.
"That one's a little…" The staff member looks a little awkward. "It's a little too direct. It feels more like…a private moment thats been interrupted?"
"It does, doesn't it," Yamada murmurs, looking Yuto right in the eye. Yuto blinks, looks at the picture, looks back at Yamada, and then he finally gets it.
That is how he sees Keito. That's what's making Keito look so good in all those shots, because that's what Yuto sees when he looks at him. And what's worse, now everybody else can see it too.
"Oh," Yuto says weakly, feeling like he can't get any air into his lungs. The staff member rushes to assure him that he did an excellent job, really, but Yuto barely hears. It's a struggle to sit through the rest of the meeting and pretend to focus on what they're talking about, but somehow Yuto manages. Yamada only has to kick him under the table twice. By the time it's over, Yuto wants to sprint from the room, except that he isn't even sure where he'd be running off to.
Maybe to hide in the bathroom. Forever.
"You can't hide in the bathroom forever," Yamada calls through the stall door. Yuto bites down on the urge to call back yes he fucking can; he's hiding and that would give away his position. "Seriously, come out here and man up. So you took some pictures that are gonna get published and reveal to millions of fangirls that you're in love with a bandmate. It's not that big a deal."
"I hate you," Yuto calls through the stall door. "You're stupid and short and go away."
"Open this door right now," Yamada orders, voice saying he's through fooling around. "I refuse to stand in a bathroom when you could be having this breakdown just as easily in a perfectly hygienic Starbucks or something."
Yuto meekly opens the door. Honestly sitting on the toilet seat was kind of getting to him too.
"No coffee, though," Yuto says, mind filled with Keito's fingers curled around a mug. Yamada rolls his eyes, but takes him out to a frozen yogurt place where they can sit in the corner and not be bothered, because who on earth wants frozen yogurt in the middle of winter.
"Eat it," Yamada orders, sitting down a cup of mixed chocolate and salted caramel with some crushed waffle cone pieces on top. "My sister says that's the best flavor combination for tormented best friend love discussion."
Yuto wants to ask why all the Yamada siblings are so fucked up, but it seems like the pot calling the kettle black at the moment. Instead he takes the little green spoon and stirs the two flavors together restlessly. "What am I supposed to do?"
"Do?" Yamada asks. He's got a heap of toppings in front of him that borders on sickening, and Yuto shudders to think what flavors of yogurt are underneath. "You don't have to do anything."
Yuto frowns and stirs harder.
"Do you want to do something about it?" Yamada asks, playing along. He takes a large bite of his concoction and goes on talking through his full mouth. "Basically you can tell him or not tell him. Then he either likes you or doesn't like you. Or maybe he likes you but still says no. Or maybe he doesn't like you like that but says yes because he doesn't want to hurt your feelings and dating girls is a hassle anyway and fanservice is good for your popularity and—"
"What part of this is supposed to make me feel better?!" Yuto demands.
"I'm not trying to make you feel better, I just wanted frozen yogurt," Yamada says. He holds his nonchalant expression for about three seconds before breaking into a grin. "Aw, come on, it's not as dramatic as all that."
"It feels dramatic," Yuto grumbles. He eats a spoonful of chocolate and waffle cone and it does actually help, a tiny bit. "I can't keep a secret worth a damn, you know that. I'll have to tell him and then everything will be weird and it'll be all my fault. Even if I don't tell him, he'll still see the pictures. You figured it out, and you're an idiot." Yuto buries his face in his hands. "I'm an idiot."
"I'm pretty sure Keito knows that, though," Yamada says, the closest to comforting that he's managed so far. "He did go on a romantic date with you, and he even let you take creepy pictures. All my parents did on their first date was go bowling, and look what they produced."
Yuto looks up to see Yamada framing his face with his hands, making an exaggerated :D face.
"You are literally the worst friend in the entire world," Yuto informs him.
"That's why you're going to name your first adopted child after me," Yamada says, patting Yuto's hand. "Now eat your yogurt so we both get yelled at by manager."
When they finally do turn back up from their extended break with chocolate-smudged faces, they do indeed get yelled at, but Yuto's satisfied that Yamada gets the worst of it, after that morning's incident with the pants.
"Hey," Keito says when Yuto shuffles into the dressing room. "I have something to show you."
"Yeah?" Yuto asks, puzzled. Keito reaches for his bag and rifles around in its cavernous depths for at least a minute before he pulls out a little plastic bag, folded flat.
"Here," he says, handing it over. He watches expectantly, and Yuto is even more puzzled as he unfolds the bag and pulls out what feels like a small stack of pictures.
They are in fact pictures. They're unmarked photographs from some shady idol shop, because the two of them got paparazzi'd on their date, strolling along down the sidewalk, posture relaxed. In one, Yuto's tipping his head back to laugh, and in another Keito is sticking his tongue out at him.
"They aren't as good as yours," Keito says, making Yuto look up. "And they didn't get a shot of you calling me a homewrecker in the park. But you know, we look pretty good, don't you think?"
"Haha," Yuto forces himself to say, the direct way that Keito is looking at him making Yuto wish suddenly he had the safety of his camera to hide behind again.
"Together, I mean," Keito adds, and Yuto stares, skin going cold with surprise and then hot. "You've got something you want to say, right?"
Yuto opens his mouth, but nothing comes out. He gives up after a few seconds, shaking his head.
"Hikaru said our date looked like a date, and I told him that was funny because it felt like a date too," Keito says, taking back over. "You thought so too, right?"
"I don't know," Yuto whispers. He can't seem to make his voice come out any louder. Keito won't stop looking right at him and his heart is doing a funny thing and Keito will probably not think it's cute when Yuto throws up frozen yogurt on his shoes.
"Ah, well if you aren't sure…let's do it again?" Keito suggests. He's smiling, a little shy but hopeful, and damn, Yuto is really sorry he doesn't have his camera now. "You know, just to make sure."
"YES!" Yuto shouts in Keito's face, finding his voice all at once, which makes Keito startle and bump into Yuto because they're standing too close, and the pictures go spilling to the ground. Keito starts laughing first, and then Yuto does too, nerves spilling out in high-pitched giggles like he's a soda that somebody shook too hard and then opened suddenly.
They're still laughing a little when they're on their hands and knees to gather up the pictures. Yuto holds out his half of the stack and Keito's fingers brush his when Keito reaches to take them. It feels nice, and Keito smiles at him like he felt that too. Yuto leans forward on impulse and kisses Keito's cheek, just a soft brush of lips. When he pulls back, the way Keito is looking at Yuto goes right through him, eyes low-lidded and focused just on him.
"I don't think you should bring the camera this time," Keito says, and Yuto agrees that yeah, that would probably be best.