Reno: The doctor –a slender man with a long black pony tail– sadistically shined his light in my eyes for a third time under the guise of checking my pupils. "Doctor Hojo," Tseng growled from beside me. "What's wrong with him?" "He has a concussion," breezed a lady-doctor with a lovely face and long, straight brown hair. Her brown eyes shined with disapproval at Doctor Hojo before she looked at Tseng. "Thank you," Tseng told her softly. "Don't mind my colleague. He can go a bit overboard on examinations," she told me, her voice as lovely as her face. Hojo gave her a rather dirty look before leaving. "So what can we do, Doctor Crescent?" Hm. Tseng and his 'we' business might make me start thinking he cared. "That depends. Mr. Sinclair, do you live alone?" "Yes." "Do you have a friend that can stay with you? Since you're just showing symptoms now, someone needs to stay with you to make sure the symptoms don't get worse." Her voice betrayed her concern. "For tonight, at least." "I'll stay with him," Tseng volunteered from the seat beside me. Oh, I am totally screwed six ways to Sunday! And not in the fun way! "Alright. You're also his boss, correct?" "Yes." "Okay. Tonight, watch for headaches that get worse or don't leave; weakness, numbness, or decreased coordination; nausea or vomiting; slurred speech; extreme drowsiness or being unable to wake him; confusion, restlessness, or agitation; loss of consciousness; or difficulty recognizing people or places. Until he's better, he also shouldn't do anything that's physically or mentally strenuous. Mr. Sinclair, you're also not to drink." "Aw. Now he's gonna enforce that, too," I complained, pouting slightly. She laughed at that. "Let me finish. I think you're okay to drive. Take ibuprofen for any pain you experience." She smiled. "I don't think you're going to have any complications, Mr. Sinclair, so you should be fine in under a week." "Thank you." Tseng sounded like he meant it. "Doctor Crescent, I've had concussions before. I'm usually better in about two days." "Come back in then, Mr. Sinclair. I have a feeling you're hard-headed." "You have no idea," Tseng murmured. She laughed, the sound pretty and bell-like. "Oh, I have other doctors' notes. I have a notion." "May I go home and sleep?" I asked. Dealing with doctors was stressful. Tseng rolled his eyes. "I'll get him out of your hair."
Reno: "Remind me why we're going to your place, again?" Tseng asked as he parked in front of my building. "More space." I shrugged. He studied the building silently for a moment. "I remember this place. It's a movie theater." "It was a movie theater, but buildings, like people, can retire. I have the entire third floor to myself. The only downside is no elevators." I shrugged. "It doesn't bother me any." "And here I was under the impression that you're a terminally lazy creature." I laughed lightly. "I thought you knew me better than that," I told him, opening the car door and sliding out. My balance had returned and the dizziness had eased away for the time being, so I was okay on my feet. Tseng got out of his car as well, his concerned gaze pretty much glued to me. There was a monstrous lump in my throat at the concern in his gaze and in his actions. If he kept acting like this, I was going to start thinking he cared for me as more than just a friend. As it was, I wasn't sure I could handle having him this close to me all night, hence me wanting to go home. If all else failed, I could lock myself in my own bedroom.
Tseng: Reno's home was… well… homier than I'd expected. It smelled like coffee and cigarettes and something earthy and musky that was so familiar yet hard to place. He'd decorated in mocha and crimson with black accents. Everything looked simply functional. There was no elaborate scroll-work on the tables or trim, despite his love of the theatrical, exotic, and occasionally ostentatious; everything had straight edges and a lacquered finish. And the furniture was simple and tasteful. Above all, it looked and felt like a comfortable, lived-in space. He smiled slightly. "This is the living room. The kitchen is just over that way," he told me, pointing to the elaborate kitchen on his right. "This floor was originally intended to house four tenants and the bathroom, lounge, and kitchenette were to be shared. But when no one else showed any interest in the other apartments, Mr. Soto let me have the entire floor." "Most landlords won't let you redecorate as you wish," I commented. "I'm buying the building from him," he told me, shrugging. "A little at a time so he doesn't ask how I make so much money." Well. That was a bombshell. Reno never struck me as the type to need the stability of a home base, yet I was standing in his. "It's a nice place, Red. You have good taste." A blush rose to his cheeks and it took him a moment or two to gather his thoughts before he took my hand and pulled me through the open doorway of the living room. "C'mon, I'll show you the other rooms and you can have your pick," he murmured, not looking at me. Silently, I willed him to look at me, to show me the adorable blush on his face, to let me see a side of him no one else got to see.
Reno: I warmed under his compliment, but I was too afraid to show him that side of me, too afraid to admit that he was the first person aside from Elena to see my home. So instead, I gave him the five dollar tour of my rooms, ending off in my bedroom. He stared at the room like he'd expected something different. I'd painted the room cerulean blue and the various shades I could achieve by adding a white and black to the color. It looked oddly like a piece of renaissance art, aside from the pale yellow 'stars' scattered on the ceiling. "It's breath-taking, Reno. Who would have thought you had a classical bone in your body?" I could feel the truth in his words the same way I could feel the blush blooming like a rose on my cheeks. I glanced away, hoping to collect myself. "Didn't you tell me this was intended to hold four tenets? I've only seen three rooms." The moment he said that, I knew exactly which room I had neglected to show him. I swallowed hard. "I must have forgotten that one," I murmured, tugging him back into the hall and down to the room beside mine. Pushing the door open, I showed him the room I'd designed while lingering on thoughts of him. The walls were a medium jade, but the silver accents truly gave it an ethereal feel. Above the bed, I'd painted a tribal-style dragon in black. "Wow. I really like what you did with this room." He slightly smiled at me, and it was breath-taking. "Then this can be your room," I returned slightly gruffly. He was, after all, who it was designed for. "Oh, I can't!" "No one else is sleeping in it," I shot back smartly. Sighing, I felt my expression soften. "Enjoy this room. Please." It was made for you. "Alright," he said, setting his bags on the floor beside the bed. "I'll let you get settled. I need to make a phone call," I told him, suddenly remembering Reeve's threat if I didn't call him. He smiled. "I'll be here."
Tseng: Reno had done a remarkable job sound-proofing the rooms –I had seen the evidence of his work in the drywall he had stacked in the first bedroom he had shown me– but I could still hear bits and pieces, never mind the fact that the bedroom doors were wide open and this place had great acoustics. "Don't play with me, Reeve," Reno growled into the phone. "I'm calling, just like you demanded." I couldn't hear what Reeve said back to him, but with the response he received, I really wished I could. "N-no!" Reno sputtered. I could almost hear him blush. Whatever had been said, it ticked Reno off. I heard the phone drop to the floor. "What the hell?" he yelled. "Why on earth would you say that, you pervert?" The man replied with something else I couldn't hear. "Reeve!" Reno almost whined in reply, his voice breathy. Needy. "Don't do that!" Reeve mush have said something patronizing next, because Reno growled at him. "Fuck you, Reeve. I have a concussion." I had no clue what was said next, but Reno's reply shook me a bit. "Tseng's in my apartment, you shit," he growled. "So stop." What in the hell? Are they having phone sex? I wondered before Reno threw back a harsh reply. "How can you even fucking ask that?" Whatever he said next pissed Reno off even more. "Bastard! Stop saying things like that!" Reno demanded, his voice trembling slightly. What made his voice tremble that way? Probably something dirty, I concluded. "Reeve! Stop it now," Reno barked. "Some days, I don't know why I even put up with you. You say such perverted things!" Well there was the confirmation of my suspicions. "I am not having this conversation. Talk to you when your mind is out of the gutter." I heard a beep and then I heard him throw the phone at the wall. "Fucking perverted bastard," he growled. "That is why I didn't tell him. He just found out this morning and he's already using him against me." What in the hell is going on here?
Reno: I really wanted to kill Reeve. It had never happened before, not in my long acquaintance with the perverted technological genius. He usually just drove me up a wall on occasion, but I seriously wanted to hurt him. Where in the hell did he get those fucking ideas from? Who asks their friend those kinds of things? "How often do you dream of him, hm? How often to you dream about him naked and at your mercy? How often do you dream about him taking you hard and rough?... Are you fucking him now?... You are aren't you? Naughty boy.… Or are you still touching yourself and pretending he's the one touching you?" I mean, hell, I had phone sex that hadn't embarrassed me this much! Someone knocked on my open door. Oh, fuck me. I'd left the fucking door open. There was only one someone in the apartment aside from me. Rookie mistake, Sinclair. You'll remember in your afterlife that a rookie mistake is what did you in. "What in the hell is going on, Reno?" My gaze shot to him. His emotions were hidden behind a blank mask, but it made me want to run like a frightened rabbit. I knew that danger lurked when he hid behind an emotionless mask. Instead of running, I motioned him into my room He sat down in the chair beside my bed. Close enough to not be impolite, but not close enough I could touch him. I sighed. "Just how much of that phone conversation did you hear?" I asked, reaching for the recording device I had attached to my home phone. "Half of it. Your half." I nodded, trying to hide my panic, my fear, as I tossed him the mp3 recorder that had the phone call on it. Then I tossed him a pair of headphones. "If you want the rest of the story, here you go." Then I stood up and walked out of my bedroom.