Chapter 29:

A Love so Sweet

A Love So Sweet, I Get Confused

Chaos was ensuing back stage as stage hands and actors a like were getting everything prepped and ready for the debut show. Emi started to panic, going around asking if anyone had seen Mitsu has he wasn’t in his dressing room. She looked around, seeing Akio entering through the back door. He was her only hope at the point. “Akio,” She cried running over to him. “Please tell me you know where Mitsu is!” The look on Akio’s face was all the answer Emi needed. She started to breath erratically, a panic attack starting to settle in. “The star of my play is missing!”

Karasu ran over, kneeling Emi down to the floor encouraging her to take deep breathes. Akio coughed, pointing in the direction of the bathrooms, proclaiming he would try there before anywhere else. He sighed, opening the door, hearing mumbles coming from the stall at the far end. He smiled, nodding to himself, feeling proud that he was able to understand his boyfriend’s actions. He shooed away the other people out of the bathroom, locking the door once they were all alone. He decided to lean against the stall door, falling to the floor and sitting comfortably, expecting that he would be here for a while, even though he didn’t have much time. “So,” He started to say, using the back of his hand to knock on the door, bringing the mumbling to silence. “Freaking out in there.”

On the other side of the door, Mitsu was sat against the door, knees up to his chest. “Yeah,” he answered.

“Everyone is looking for you,” Akio said, getting no reply. “Want to talk about why you’re hiding in a bathroom stall?”

“I’m scared,” Mitsu replied, his voice shaking. “What if I let everyone down?”

“And what if you do?” Akio tried to joke, making Mitsu’s blood begin boil. “As long as you have fun tonight, I’ll be proud of you.”

“You will?” The idea of Akio still being proud of him, calmed his blood down. He pushed himself up, opening the door, seeing Akio had been sat back-to-back with him with the door between. Akio nodded, standing up and cupping Mitsu’s cheeks. Mitsu’s face had certainly matured over the pass year.

Tonight, was Mitsu’s big debut, preforming a play written by Emi specifically with him in mind for the lead. His hair had gotten a little longer and his eyes showed an air of maturity from his time in therapy and coming to find himself. Akio kissed him deeply, Mitsu’s body going limp at the touch and the love from the kiss feeling him with joy. Letting go, Akio had a smug look on his face. “You seem a lot calmer,” He winked.

Mitsu smirked, returning Akio’s kiss with a quicker one. “I guess I am,” He laughed, taking Akio’s hand as they walked back out to the back stage. “Hi everyone.”

Emi stood recovered straight from her position, going over and hugging Mitsu tightly, sending silent prayers to the person who led Akio to him. She pulled away, sighing and shaking her head. “Just talk to me,” She ordered Mitsu, putting her forehead against his. “I’m nervous too, you know?”

“I’m sorry,” Mitsu apologised.

“But seeing you no,” Emi took a deep breath. “I’m a little less nervous. In fact, I excited to see you up there and smash this performance.”

“Thank you, sis.”

The bell indicating for the patrons to take their seats rung and the stage crew started to add the final touches to the set. Akio gave Mitsu one last kiss, wishing him the best of luck before running off to his seat. Akio joined Mitsu dad and his sister in the front row, getting comfortable beside his sister as the curtains opened. The lights of the room dimmed and a spot light was placed on the stage, making Mitsu the main focus. He was knelt before a grave, dressed all in black and his face perfectly sad for this scene. “Mom,” He spoke up, his voice clear and word enunciated well for all the theatre to hear. “A lot has happened recently and I think I know where to start.”

The play went on, Mitsu’s performance never faltering, even when an area of the set failed to stand up. He was truly professional from start to encore. Everyone in the audience being brought to tears when the cast, stage help and writer all came forward, holding hands and taking a bow. Mitsu’s dad was the first to his feet, his cheers roaring so loud, they were heard above anyone else’s, reaching Mitsu and Emi who started to sob and wave to him. Akio stood, grabbing a bouquet of flowers from a nearby stagehand and walking on stage to present them to Mitsu. Mitsu blushed, happily taking the flowers as the audience started to cheer louder. He took the mic, standing straight as he faced the audience. “Thank you everyone for coming,” His words becoming clearly as the cheers started to die down. “This play means a lot to me, as it represents a journey, I’ve taken alongside those I love. Thank you for coming to our first performance of ‘The Flower that Brewed Sweet Honey’ and we hope to see you at our future performances.”

After clean up, Mitsu went back to Akio’s apartment, this place becoming his second home over the year. Already having a set of pyjamas, a toothbrush and even his favourite drink available. Stretching hi arms up as he left the bathroom, he found Akio sat on the bed, his shirt removed, only his in sleeping bottoms and with a bag beside him. Akio grabbed the bag, pushing it into Mitsu’s chest, eager for him to open it.

Mitsu blushed, embarrassed by his boyfriend’s sudden thrusting actions. He dove his hand into the bag, pulling out a small box that was drowning form the oversize bag. His heart began to speed up, the box small enough to hold a ring. In a panic he rushed to open in, the contents falling to the floor with a clink as it bounced under the bed. “I’m sorry,” Mitsu cried, scurrying to the floor, expecting to find a ring but what he pulled from under the bed was a key. “I don’t understand.”

Unable to move from the floor in shock, Akio decided to kneel down beside Mitsu, his smile soft as he used an index finger to stroke under Mitsu’s eye to catch the tears threatening to escape. “I’ve been offered a place at a cooking school in Tokyo,” Akio said, using his free hand to hold Mitsu’s sweaty hand tightly. “I want you to come with me.”

“Go to Tokyo?” Akio nodded, praying to hear a yes. Mitsu burst out in tears, a huge smile breaking through them. “We promised, didn’t we?” He asked, laughing. His emotions fighting with each other, not really knowing how he should feel in the moment. Mitsu looked behind Akio, seeing ‘Hana’ giving him one last smile and a wave as she disappeared. His heart didn’t hurt in that moment, seeing ‘Hana’ one last time confirmed; this is who he was meant to be with. He didn’t need ‘Hana’ anymore. “We promised that we’d help each other with our dreams.”

“So that’s a yes?” Akio asked hopefully.

“Of course.”

Akio leant over, holding Mitsu tightly throwing him onto the bed and crawling on top. He leant down, a kiss full of passion taking over and the two entering a world of their own. It was a love that was passionate yet sweet.

A love so sweet, that you can get confused.