Hakuba was so tired after the heist that when he was offered a ride in Mouri Ran-san's car, he didn't even think of asking where it was taking him. He just allowed Mouri-san to bundle him in the backseat -- along with her boyfriend whom he had had sex with a few hours prior, while the girlfriend of the other young man he'd recently had sex with, Toyama Kazuha-san, rode shotgun. The silence could have risen to new heights of awkward, but for the fact that everyone present was just as exhausted as he was, and the only one not halfway to sleep was, hopefully, Mouri-san herself.
When the car turned out to park beside the Hattori residence, having followed Hattori-kun's motorcycle, and Hattori-kun told him they had enough rooms for everyone, Saguru merely sighed and called the hotel to cancel his reservation. It was that or asking Mouri-san or Hattori-kun for a ride, and the first would only feel guilty for getting his destination wrong, and the second would scare ten more years off his life.
(There were some risks he could accept for an excuse to hold on to an attractive kendoka's trim waist, especially when the engine was too loud for said kendoka to speak. A strong likelihood of being dumped at high speeds onto the pavement wasn't one.)
He was shown to a guest bedroom, and did not have even one passing stray thought to wonder about who would sleep where and with whom until the next morning, as he lay half-awake contemplating the ceiling.
His next thought was that it wasn't his business anyway, and that it was really quite crass of him to be curious.
It was fifteen past eleven in the morning, so he went to freshen up and then ventured out in search of other people. He was just glad Hattori Senior and his wife were currently on vacation. Now if he could just find Hattori Junior, convey his thanks for the hospitality, (try not to remember yesterday evening too much,) and go catch his train...
But there was no one to be found in any of the unlocked rooms. Apart from the kitchen.
Mouri-san was cooking.
She was wearing an apron over her clothes and had a spatula in hand; very domestic. She turned to the door, blinked slightly-too-wide eyes upon recognizing him. "Hakuba-san, good morning."
He hesitated before he stepped in. "Ah. Good morning. I was wondering where everyone else was..."
"Still in bed, I'm afraid." Mouri-san turned back to the kitchen counter, casually. "What do you usually eat for breakfast?"
"Don't concern yourself--"
"No, no, I insist."
He relented. He wasn't extremely hungry, but it would have been rude to refuse, and he really didn't want to be rude to Mouri Ran. She was close enough to making him feel guilty already. He sat at the table. "I'll have whatever you're making. Thank you."
She couldn't possibly ignore that yesterday only, he had slept with her boyfriend. She was still making him breakfast, calm as you please.
He watched her for some time as she moved around the kitchen with brisk efficiency, and noted that Kudo-kun wasn't the only one who seemed remarkably at home at Hattori's. Mouri-san generally knew where everything was, even if she sometimes had to double-check.
"I wanted to talk to you," she said, and turned away from the rice cooker to give him a frank, long look.
Saguru braced himself. He wasn't sure what to expect -- a 'this was only a one-night-stand, it didn't mean a thing, don't get expectations now' warning perhaps? Kudo was too smart to get involved with someone insecure and unstable enough to unwillingly allow him close to her boyfriend and then threaten him into keeping away...
"Are you alright?"
He stared in shock for a second. The way Mouri-san's eyes searched his face was surprisingly earnest. "Ah. I'm merely a little tired, Mouri-san," he deflected, still baffled. "The heist..."
This wasn't what she was talking about, they both knew it, and from the little twitch of her eyes, embarrassed, wanting to slide away, it was costing her to broach the subject. He thought avoiding it would be somewhat cowardly.
But oh was it embarrassing.
"I have to admit," Saguru started cautiously, coughing in his fist, "that I am still a tad... confused."
"Is there any etiquette I should keep in mind?" he asked, a burst of sudden amusement pulling a smile out of him. "I don't think Emily Post ever wrote about this."
Mouri-san smiled back, the set of her shoulders relaxing. "Wouldn't it be practical if she had?" she replied, still smiling, though a blush was rising to her cheeks. "I think... perhaps we just have to be polite and honest, and hope it'll be enough."
He watched her busy herself with the tea pot, pour him a cup.
"Hakuba-san, I wanted to ask -- it occurred to me -- that it seemed a bit sudden, and the two of them are ... such guys about things, and --" She cleared her throat. Saguru tried not to react to the unsaid 'Ah, but I didn't mean you weren't a guy!' "Well, you seemed the type to like the guidelines explained more clearly."
That he was. He wasn't certain he really needed an explanation -- it was done and over with, and unlikely to happen again -- but he was curious as to their motives, their psychologies. It had always been his greatest point of interest.
"I'm not jealous," she said. "Kazuha-chan won't be, either. Not about you."
"Ah." He sipped at his tea. "Because of my gender, or because this was a one-time event?"
Mouri-san looked up at him, startled. "No -- that's not it. Well, I wouldn't mind... Oh, this is so awkward."
Saguru took another sip of tea to disguise the twitch that wanted to turn into a smile. She'd just more or less implied he was welcome to sample Kudo-kun again. "Why, thank you for the invitation."
Thankfully she didn't get offended at the light teasing but laughed, rueful and blushing all over again. "You'll still have to sort it out with him. As for what Kazuha-chan will think..." She paused there. Saguru's gaze sharpened. This was her real point of concern. "We just have rules. Compromises. What will hurt us, what won't... We're all different, so our relationships need different rules too. Heiji-kun and Kazuha-chan, for example..."
"Ah," he said, remembering the discussion yesterday when he left the bathroom, reinterpreting it now with his new info. 'This ain't the category she needs ta be called about.' His gender wouldn't be changing anytime soon, so... "Would she have a problem with, hm, another visit, then?"
He was surprised to find the thought disappointed him. He just...
Hattori-kun was good. Saguru still remembered his hands, the way he kissed the back of his neck -- the way he moved inside him, oh god, this so wasn't a thought for the present company. He looked down into his tea cup. Ahem. Awkward didn't even start to convey it.
"I don't know. The only rule I know is that there can be no other woman for Heiji-kun," Ran said, voice controlled, cautious. "No other man for Kazuha-chan either. But I don't know if..."
She turned away, started rustling pots and pans in a way Saguru could tell was a pure attempt at looking unconcerned. "I'm sure we all seem very -- you know, like we know what we're doing, but you're the first. You and --" A strangled whisper that might have been a name, if a very short one. "But anyway, for Heiji-kun or Kazuha-chan... Outside of the four of us, you're the first for them, and it's different. I don't know how Kazuha-chan will take it if... for a long-term arrangement, I mean. She doesn't mind Shinichi, but, I don't know, it's not the same. They've been friends for so long."
Saguru gave a polite nod. Of course Kudo-kun and Hattori-kun's bond was entirely unlike anything they had with other people. Stable, easy, comfortable. Enduring. It did relieve him of a great deal of pressure. He wouldn't have liked damaging it.
"I don't think she needs to worry about any long-term impact. Half the time Hattori-kun and I don't even get along. I seriously doubt it'll become a concern."
Mouri-san muttered something under her breath that sounded remarkably like 'that's the problem, half the time he doesn't get along with Kazuha-chan either.' Saguru blinked in mild alarm.
The thing was... Kudo-kun's body was going to keep him distracted for a while to come, and his mind was a formidable, fascinating machine Saguru could see himself analyzing for years, but there wasn't enough personal spark for Saguru to feel more than passing regret at the thought that he ought to cut the affair short before he could get emotionally involved. (Well -- any more emotionally involved. He hadn't expected to attach such weight to Kudo-kun's approval. But it was the sort of craving that would be soothed with a professional or platonically friendly approval, too.)
Hattori-kun involved him simply by breathing, even if that was a negative, antagonistic kind of involvement. He just... grated. Saguru couldn't keep him at a smooth, polite distance, and that was... more dangerous.
Mouri-san wasn't watching him; poking at the omelet with her spatula, she had thankfully missed Saguru's moment of distraction.
"Now, our rule... Shinichi and I... is that we -- we... tell each other. What happened." She looked over her shoulder then, looked at Saguru, who was suddenly feeling distinctly uncomfortable. "But I don't think he told you that first, did he? And I have a feeling it would bother you very much. So if you don't want me to hear it, then I promise I won't."
... This was mortifying. He rubbed a hand across his face, feeling exhausted. "If this is one of the rules your relationship rests on, then I don't wish to be the cause of--"
"Hakuba-san. This isn't balancing a checkbook or paying bills." She gave a little smile, blushing, eyes averted. "I can cut him some slack, this time."
Saguru was suddenly violently reminded of that picture, her legs and the white top hat. He supposed after an experience like that it was understandable that she would feel lenient -- oh god, what a horrible train of thought. Low of him. As if the only reason Mouri-san would feel inclined to be generous was that she'd gotten hers too.
He was distracted -- rather abruptly so -- by the footsteps making their way to them, much too close for him to only notice them now. He twitched, turned to look.
Kudo-kun walked in, paused in the doorway. He was in a polo shirt and clean jeans which still managed to remind Saguru of the ones he'd unbuttoned just yesterday, kneeling on the floor before him.
"Good morning," Saguru said, somehow.
Kudo-kun nodded a greeting at him, expression calm and void of any hint that he was reminiscing about oral action or anything of the sort, and stepped up to Mouri-san, who was closest. He whispered something in her ear, and turning so that the angle of their bodies mostly blocked Saguru's view, stole a kiss. Saguru dived back into his teacup. It was almost empty.
In the middle of their silent exchange, Saguru caught Mouri-san glancing his way, meaningfully, and the expression on her face, coupled with the personality she had shown... When she pointedly turned her back on the two of them, as if saying 'here, you have some plausible deniability', Saguru was pretty sure he had understood her meaning. When Kudo-kun looked at him askance he couldn't entirely hide his moment of dread at the thought that Kudo-kun might kiss him hello too.
Kudo-kun only smirked faintly at him, said "Good morning, Hakuba-kun, did you have a good night?" and sat at the table without leaning any closer. Saguru gave him a grateful nod. He was sure Mouri-san meant well, he just -- not in public. Not even if she wasn't looking. Not in such a casual, everyday way.
He probably shouldn't even have kissed Kudo-kun on the mouth at all. It seemed to presume so much.
Then a weight landed across his shoulders, and he was halfway to elbowing the newcomer in the throat when he identified Hattori-kun's laughter and stopped himself. Damn it. Being both distracted and on edge was a bad combination. What was it with this situation that ruined his composure so? ... Alright, so that was a question that contained its own answer.
Hattori had somehow managed to drape himself across the two of them, even though Saguru and Kudo-kun weren't sitting that close. "Hey guys! Hey, neechan. Sleep well?"
... Bare arm. Around his neck, skin to skin. Against his shoulder he could feel Hattori-kun's chest vibrating with his voice. A little prick of sense memory hit him -- that voice whispering against the back of his neck -- and he had to look away; for a second he forgot to shrug Hattori-kun's arm off.
"Mmh?" Hattori-kun made an inquisitive noise and leaned over his shoulder to peer at his face.
Saguru looked away more pointedly. "Will you please remove yourself," he droned, not hoping much.
It was astonishing but he could almost feel the smirk in the air. He certainly noticed when Hattori-kun let Kudo-kun's neck go and slid his way to Saguru's other shoulder, to peer at him from there. Saguru couldn't help it, he twitched his head away again. Kudo-kun was snickering in his hand. Saguru immediately turned back to glare at Hattori.
Which was, of course, when a still smirking Hattori dropped a kiss on the tip of his nose.
"Oi, oi," said Kudo halfheartedly. Mouri-san was giggling guiltily at the stove, her back still pointedly turned. Huh. Good reflection on those saucepans, wasn't there.
Saguru stared at Hattori-kun.
Well. This kind of kiss was more teasing than intimacy. Still ... friendly. Unexpectedly friendly. Which ... wasn't so bad. Was it?
"Should I assume you will be draping yourself on me regularly from now on?"
Hattori made a show of pondering the question. "Think so, yep."
Saguru let out a long-suffering sigh, and told his traitorous hormones that this wasn't a good thing at all. Truly, it wasn't. Then again, letting Hattori visibly annoy him was only invitation for Hattori to keep doing it.
Likely this was all it was. Hattori-kun was a tactile person, was all. It didn't imply he believed his girlfriend wouldn't mind; dense as he had showed himself to be on occasion, it was likely he hadn't thought that far yet, anyway.
Saguru wondered if they were going to get along from now on. Now that would be strange. He smiled faintly. "Well then, I suppose I'll get to practice my judo more often."
"Thank you for the occasion, Hattori-kun," he said, and hid a smirk into his teacup.
Hattori slunk off him, glaring sulkily as Kudo laughed. Saguru's smirk grew an inch smugger.
Alright. Yes. This might not be half-bad after all.
He took his leave soon afterwards. Train to catch, things to do back home, it was nice seeing you, thank you for the hospitality. No, no double entendres there, truly.
Mouri-san caught up with him on the front steps. She was holding a plastic bag. "Wait, Hakuba-san. I made -- that is -- do you want a bento?"
... She was a nice person.
"Ah -- Mouri-san."
Making his decision was easier than telling her he had done so. He gave her a rueful smile.
"What Kudo-kun chooses to tell you, and what you choose to hear... I'm
leaving it up to you. My one personal rule, though -- please do not mention
it again," he added quickly, mildly chagrined. "I have to admit it's
Mouri-san gave a snorting giggle, a blush blooming high on her cheeks. "I promise. I'll keep it a secret, you don't have to worry."
Saguru expected he'd be able to tell if she had asked and how much Kudo-kun had seen fit to share in the ten seconds that followed their next meeting. Hopefully by then he'd have gotten desensitized to the idea. Giving a last chuckle, he picked up his bag and accepted the bento from her hands.
"Well then, I'm off. And -- thank you. It was nice talking to you."
Really it was amusing, he thought, and deeply weird, that as little as he was physically or mentally attracted to Mouri-san, she might be the whole reason behind any potential second encounter with her boyfriend. Emotionally, she was... ah.
Extremely unlikely to allow anything damaging to occur, was one way to put it.
(Safe was another.)
(It felt safer, knowing there really would be no unwarned negative fallout, no uncomfortable strings attached. Safe enough to risk it again, maybe.)