Idol Comforts

by Kirisaki Nizuki (霧崎弐透)

(mirrors http://s2b2.livejournal.com/248974.html)

Idolatry > Active Units > S > Saisuke & Shizumu > Events > [5th ARC] Ticket Purchase Masterpost

1: moku∫[email protected]: 2086/04/29(Mon) 23:18:15.92 ID: e6b82b70c
Hey SS Fans! Tonight's the big night - tickets for the 5th Album Release Concert go on sale shortly.

The concert will be held at the Ganymede Ingentodome on Wed. May 1st at 19:00 UTC.
This thread is to coordinate last-minute ticket orders. Please use it only for ARC tickets.
See my SS Merchandise & Memorabilia thread for other orders.

The 4th ARC tickets sold out rapidly, so for those fans from colonies far from Ganymede,
transmission lag might prevent you from getting your ticket before they sell out.

Please post your address locator, prefecture, and colony, as well as the number of tickets you'd
like to reserve. Trustworthy fans who have paid consistently in the past and whose names are on the
whitelist can provide payment information later. New fans will need to private message me
(moku∫[email protected]).

Hope to see you all at the concert!

2: [email protected]: 2086/04/29(Mon) 23:18:53.44 ID: fcec61f78
pl7829β,naonobu-ken,luna,12

3: §[email protected]: 2086/04/29(Mon) 23:20:17.62 ID: fe5f2b7d5
As always, it is ever so considerate of you to assemble such a lovely and thoughtful post for us,
Thank you so incredibly much, mokuSeito. I'm ever so sorry to find myself unable to type that lovely
curvaceous S in your display name, so if you would see fit to consider forgiving me, I would be ever
so much obliged.

In the event that you might still be willing to allow me the privilege of having a ticket purchased
on my behalf once again through your ever so generous offer, my contact information is as follows:

Address Locator: RS-95167-δ
Towada-ken, Titan Colony
Tickets: 3

4: moku∫[email protected]: 2086/04/29(Mon) 23:22:49.50 ID: e6b82b70c
solarsyzygy - Could you confirm that you want twelve tickets? It's not a typo for 1 or 2?
§aturnalian - Sure thing, §at.

5: [email protected]: 2086/04/29(Mon) 23:22:57.91 ID: fcec61f78
yes

6: [email protected]: 2086/04/29(Mon) 23:25:08.34 ID: 1cd1362a6
i"m new to the boards & to SS fandom in general
can u still get me a ticket? i"m in saheki-ken on mars.

7: moku∫[email protected]: 2086/04/29(Mon) 23:26:47.72 ID: e6b82b70c
miSSweetie - Welcome to the board. I'd be happy to order you a ticket!
Just PM me with your contact info and financial data.
I need to make sure you're not a scammer or anything.

8: [email protected]: 2086/04/29(Mon) 23:28:30.16 ID: 1cd1362a6
i"ll pm you my info right away! when do you need the money by?

9: [email protected]: 2086/04/29(Mon) 23:29:41.85 ID: fcec61f78
asap.

“Tickets go on sale on Monday night at 00:00 UTC. As is customary, Tier 5+ fan club members in
good standing will be eligible for pre-purchase fifteen minutes ahead of schedule.”

10: moku∫[email protected]: 2086/04/29(Mon) 23:32:12.39 ID: e6b82b70c
miSSweetie - Got your PM. Everything checks out; I'll forward you the ticket the moment I get it. 🙂

11: [email protected]: 2086/04/29(Mon) 23:33:58.41 ID: 1cd1362a6
thanks moku! how many tickets are there anyway?

12: [email protected]: 2086/04/29(Mon) 23:35:02.88 ID: fcec61f78
not enough.

“For the benefit of fans limited to sublight travel, the concert will be holographically
simulcast at the usual local venues. Total capacity for all venues, including standing room, was
calculated to be 65,870,000, so tickets are expected to sell out quickly.”

13: moku∫[email protected]: 2086/04/29(Mon) 23:36:30.97 ID: e6b82b70c
solarsyzygy - Agreed. They need to build more venues. There are far too many fans who miss out.
I missed a ticket for the 3rd Album Release Concert and cried for a month. T_T
Then I went and bought a membership. It was expensive, but absolutely worth it!

14: [email protected]: 2086/04/29(Mon) 23:38:44.52 ID: 6bfdc0a1f
genuine !!!! <3 its right in my backyard for once !!!
so glad i get to have sai and shizu right here <3 <3
havent seen them live for like a year or sthg.. i missd them so much !!!!!

15: moku∫[email protected]: 2086/04/29(Mon) 23:39:36.01 ID: e6b82b70c
saisuki_59 - So I'm guessing if you're there already you don't need a ticket, right?

16: [email protected]: 2086/04/29(Mon) 23:40:25.93 ID: 6bfdc0a1f
right !! ive been camped out w my fellow saisuke groupies for 3 days already <3
well have our tickets forshure !!! cant wait to see saiii~ <3 -swoons-

17: §[email protected]: 2086/04/29(Mon) 23:42:10.32 ID: fe5f2b7d5
Ah, my dearest saisuki_59, even were you to have ever so incredible an imagination, you would still
only with the greatest of difficulty be able to try imagining how incredibly jealous I am of your
home colony and its location with respect to the impending concert.

18: [email protected]: 2086/04/29(Mon) 23:43:58.70 ID: 6bfdc0a1f
uh.....thanks !!! i think....
<3

19: moku∫[email protected]: 2086/04/29(Mon) 23:44:02.66 ID: e6b82b70c
Okay, it's time! I'll go ahead and purchase the tickets.
If anyone else still needs one, I'll be getting a few extra just in case.

20: [email protected]: 2086/04/29(Mon) 23:47:35.76 ID: 1cd1362a6
thanks again moku your the best! yay early tickets
it must be sooo genuine being an idol! u get to sing and dance all day,
never have to go to school, everbody luvs u and camps out to see u...

21: [email protected]: 2086/04/29(Mon) 23:49:12.19 ID: 6bfdc0a1f
and dont forget being surounded by beautiful men everywhere you go! <3 <3

22: §[email protected]: 2086/04/29(Mon) 23:51:47.21 ID: fe5f2b7d5
Considering the exorbitant cost of membership and concert tickets, I'd be ever so surprised if they
didn't live in the epitome of earthly (or whatever the equivalently similar adjective or adverb
might happen to be for a complex located on one of the other colonies) luxury and delight.

The recording studio was stifling. Even those who weren’t dancing were gulping down water and sweating buckets. For the two pop stars wrestling with complicated choreography under the heat of a dozen polycrystalline metal halide lamps, it was almost unbearable.

Shizumu tried to endure, stretching his arms wide as he belted out the refrain of their latest hit for the twentieth time. He basked in the applause and cheers from the mountains of projected fans rising up around him. He imagined what it would be like at the actual concert—they might have a bit of a breeze there, at least.

But it was too much. His voice faltered and his vision blurred. Breaking gaze with the the cameras, his partner Saisuke looked over at him, mouth still smiling, but eyes showing concern. A few bars later, he broke choreography and danced over to Shizumu, the followspot still tracking his unexpected movement. He put an arm around Shizumu to help his balance and started singing both parts of the call-and-response.

Shizumu looked his thanks up into his partner’s eyes before he collapsed. Saisuke almost toppled under the sudden shift in weight. The stagelights blinked out, leaving a dazzling afterimage of the stage that obscured the fading mountains as the noise of the projected crowd faded into static.

By the time Saisuke had lowered his unconscious partner to the ground, the bland white walls and equipment- and litter-strewn floor of the recording studio were back. Two dozen members of the crew and a couple of security guards were all that remained around them.

“Cut!” shouted the director, running over to the stage along with the rest of the crew. They were quickly forming a circle around the idols. “What happened?” he asked irritably.

“You pushed him too hard, that’s what happened,” said Saisuke, feeling the same exhaustion aching through his muscles. “We’ve had so many rehearsals and events this week. He needs to rest.”

The director, as usual, didn’t get it. “We don’t have time. There’s too much to get done before the concert. We’ll resume in half an hour, alright? Someone get Shizumu a bottle of water.”

“But sir,” said Saisuke, “he needs a break! He’s been under way too much pressure.” Seeing he wasn’t getting through, he added “What are you going to do if he has a mental breakdown on your set with just two days to go ’till the concert?”

The director downed the rest of his water bottle and stared at it for a moment before throwing it across the room. He turned to the scheduler. “Fine. Five hours. Get him to Psych Support.”

“No can do,” said the scheduler. “Psych Support’s booked solid for the rest of the week.”

“What about Keigo?” said Saisuke, brushing Shizumu’s sweaty hair out of his face.

“Excuse me?” said the Director.

“Keigo, from Psych Support. He used to perform with us. I’m sure he’ll take on another charge if it’s Shizumu.”

The scheduler looked cross. “That’s not the proper protocol, we—”

“Do it,” said the director. He then turned to the crew. “We need the recording ready for the New Sendai concert by Friday night. Get that last solo edited up. We’ll re-do this song and the other two when he gets back. You’re all on overtime tonight.” Without a second look at the idols, the director stormed off, no doubt to report the latest inconvenience to management.

A few huffs and sighs erupted from the crew as they filed out, much to the chagrin of the duo’s scheduler. “Yes, sir,” he said to the director’s back. He then turned to his own staff. “All right, cancel today’s photoshoot; we can use some of the spare shots from last week’s. Taito was at rest yesterday; he can take the interview instead. You there, get Shizumu to Keigo’s on the double.”

The handlers scurried around, making calls and tapping away at their displays. Two of them carefully affixed low-grav pads to Shizumu’s wrists and ankles, ignoring Saisuke’s protests.

“He needs more than just a few hours,” Saisuke said to the floor.

The scheduler sighed. “Our resources are stretched thin as it is, Sai. If this release doesn’t get our ratings up by a point and a half, our budget’s going to get cut again. Good luck getting Psych Support then. Good call with the Keigo idea; I hope he can help.”

Keigo was sitting at a low table with one of his charges. This latest room they provided him was even larger than the last; specially designed to amplify emotional acoustics, it had enough space to comfortably support a family of ten. Keigo was its only permanent resident, of course, but it had a lot of temporary ones, as evidenced by the half-dozen bunk beds arrayed along the sitting room wall.

He was rapidly reaching the upper echelons of the Psych Support department, being shuttled around between Complexes to help the idols wherever the company needed him most. With his schedule constantly overbooked, Keigo sometimes worried that attrition might be what was speeding his ascent. It was a taxing job caring for the well-being of an army of present and future interstellar superstars. He would know—he used to be one of them.

Across the table, Aki was taking his time sipping the tea, his fingers wrapped around the cup soaking up every ounce of warmth. A stranger might mistake him for Keigo’s younger brother; Both were lean but toned, muscles built up from years of dance training. In Aki’s downcast eyes, Keigo saw himself a few years prior (and several inches shorter), singing himself hoarse, clinging tightly to the dream of a miraculous debut.

The group he’d been in was called Solar Synergy, and while it was no longer around, he still treasured the close bonds he’d forged with his four stagemates as they strove to capture the hearts of billions. They had been Performers in Training at the time—PTs as their adoring fans called them, ‘pits’ to the more cynical. Identified by genetic screen as having the potential for extraordinary beauty and talent, they were selected before birth by discerning recruitment agents and signed away by proud parents so they could begin full-time training as early as possible.

As teenagers, Keigo and friends had been able to fill the biggest auditorium in the PT Complex, even in off-season. Solar Synergy had garnered more fans than some of their professional predecessors and had been on the fast track to greatness. But although only Saisuke and Shizumu had reached the end goal and debuted into mainstream stardom, their years together working toward that goal had been Keigo’s motivation each day.

He could feel the same earnest hope from his present charge across the table. But at the same time, he could feel the anxiety. What had seemed like innocent fun was rapidly becoming serious, and the expectations had really begun to pile up. There were more and more demands on Aki’s time, and worries about meeting them had given way to fear about how awful things might become if he couldn’t live up to them.

To be honest, when Keigo had first been pulled out of the Performance stream to start a new career in Support, he’d felt betrayed. He resented the company that had provided him so much only to take it away again. He hated being separated from the friends he’d grown up with. But as his psychic powers developed under the patient tutelage of master telepaths, he began to develop an appreciation for its ability to help others.

He observed Aki’s anxiety ebb and flow around him with each sip of tea. “You’re spending an awful lot of energy trying to predict the future, Aki.”

Aki looked into his cup for a moment and nodded. “If I mess up, though, if I can’t handle it, I might get kicked out. Where would I go then?”

Having been a PT himself for many years, Keigo was uniquely suited to help them out. He knew what it was like more than outsiders brought in on contract ever could. And as a member of one of the premier PT units, many of them had spent years looking up to him.

“Listen, Aki,” said Keigo, “It’s okay to think about the future sometimes, really. That’s how we prepare for it, right? But you have to remember what they say about the future: ‘one inch forward is darkness.’ We may think we can predict what’s going to happen, but we can’t. If we could, life would be easy.”

Aki looked up at him, his lower lip trembling ever so slightly.

Keigo took a moment to refill Aki’s cup, sharing some optimism with the room. “Every time you worry about missing a step, or forgetting a line, or posing awkwardly for the camera, it happens for you in your head. Every time you imagine people mocking you, or scolding you, or bullying you, it’s like you’re living through it. You may thinking you’re just trying to figure out how to avoid these things, but you’re not avoiding them at all. You’re experiencing them over and over in your head.”

Aki gulped down another sip of tea and sniffed.

Keigo smiled warmly. “It’s natural to think like that,” he said, “But if you really want to debut, you’re going to need to find a new way to deal with those worries. Try this: Next time you notice yourself thinking about the worst thing that could happen, I want you to focus back on the task at hand, okay? Concentrate on the next step and nothing else. ‘A thousand-mile journey begins with a single step,’ right?”

Keigo doubted the proverbs meant much to Aki, but he figured it was worth a shot. He never really knew if they would stick, but ever since he was a kid, he’d found them to be a useful way to hold onto a little bit of wisdom when his emotions had other plans. It was hard enough to think these things through with a cool head, let alone a head full of anger or fear.

“Sounds hard,” said Aki, looking down at the tatami. Sensing the hesitation, Keigo let flow a trickle of determination. “But I’ll try,” Aki added.

“You can do it,” said Keigo, happy to see a faint smile cross Aki’s lips. “Now go get some rest—you’ve got dance practice in a few hours.”

Aki looked over at the half-occupied bunk beds and wrinkled his nose. “Are you going to sleep too?”

“No,” sighed Keigo, “I’ve got a lot of work to do.”

When he saw Aki look longingly toward his bedroom, he added, “Alright, you can use my bed if you want. Just don’t start dancing in your sleep and knock over the lamp this time, okay?”

Aki grinned. “Thanks, Kei-chan.”

Keigo smiled despite his fatigue as he watched Aki dash off toward the bedroom. Even after Solar Synergy had disbanded, he still couldn’t seem to shake that nickname.

Keigo had been the shortest member at the time, so he was a natural role model for the younger PTs. It didn’t seem to matter that he was the tallest now. That ‘-chan’ was still embedded in the young idols’ collective memory, even if he and the group had been mostly forgotten by fickle audiences outside.

Idolatry > Active Units > S > Saisuke & Shizumu > Discussion > [fics] need reference -plz help

1: [email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 01:52:39.14 ID: 6bfdc0a1f
hey im writing a sai/shizu fanfic and does anybody know whos that guy who used to be slashed w shizu?
like a few years back there was another guy who everyone slashed w him but i dont remember

2: [email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 01:52:58.26 ID: fcec61f78
ask Savour_the_Synergy

3: [email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 01:55:23.79 ID: 99b70ea3c
Somebody called. I responded. What can I do for you?

4: [email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 01:55:31.18 ID: fcec61f78
^^^read.

5: [email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 01:56:07.39 ID: 6bfdc0a1f
hi there im wondering about whos the guy who used to be slashd w shizu
one of the pits or something.i think his name begun with a g maybe??

6: [email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 01:57:30.76 ID: 99b70ea3c
Ah, yes. You're thinking of Keigo. He was one of the members of Solar Synergy.
It was the PT group that had Shizumu and Saisuke before they branched out on their own.
They had some pretty good songs: link <-- Check out that one. It's my favourite.

7: [email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 01:58:42.55 ID: 6bfdc0a1f
nice yeah so this keigo guy was everyones otp with shizu or something right

8: [email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 02:00:29.64 ID: 99b70ea3c
They were pretty close, that's for sure. You could tell at the concerts.
Hey syz, do you still have that article about the ESP testing?

9: [email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 02:00:43.18 ID: fcec61f78
sec

10: [email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 02:01:59.41 ID: 6bfdc0a1f
what esp testing

11: [email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 02:03:36.79 ID: 99b70ea3c
They do routine psychic testing at the PT Complex. Psychics are pretty rare,
and they're really valuable to the company as Enforcers, Prostitutes, Support, etc.
They don't usually find too many, but they always check.

12: [email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 02:05:49.81 ID: fcec61f78
here

“Routine psychic testing at the Terran orbital Performer in Training (PT) Complex last week
discovered emerging empathic talents among some of the Performers in Training (PTs). Out of 1854
individuals tested, 7 were found positive for psychic potential. While most of the PTs identified
were in training cohorts, one was in the active PT unit Solar Synergy. As a result, the unit will be
disbanded and its members re-streamed. In the press release issued by the PT Media Relations
department, the…[Press M for More]”

13: [email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 02:07:29.33 ID: 99b70ea3c
To tell you the truth, I miss seeing Keigo and Shizumu together. They had a fun dynamic.

As he stooped to gather the teacups, the door chimed. Keigo closed his eyes and took a deep breath. The door chimed again, more insistently this time. It wasn’t like the idols they brought in unannounced didn’t need his help; he would certainly feel bad if he turned them away. But once, just once, it would be nice if the handlers could be bothered to follow the protocol.

Waiting with his hand over the door panel until the chime sounded once more, Keigo opened the door, doing his best to look downtrodden and exhausted—which didn’t require much effort. But when he saw who it was, his face lit up: Keigo hadn’t seen him for months, except on the holocasts.

“Shizumu!” said Keigo. “I haven’t seen you for ages! You look great—”

“Keigo-san,” said a man behind Shizumu who Keigo had barely noticed. From his sombre suit and practiced manners, it was clear he was some low-ranking minion. “By decree of the director, this young man is to be provided five hours of treatment. Your co-operation would be appreciated.”

The emotional acoustics outside his room were pretty awful, making it a little harder for Keigo to read the man’s thoughts clearly. Nevertheless, he was clearly inexperienced. He also apparently found Keigo intimidating; that could be useful.

“Since when does a director get to make decrees?” asked Keigo. “Was this approved by management?”

The man cleared his throat. “Managerial approval is pending. If you—”

“The standard protocol for appointments is to contact my secretary and request one,” said Keigo, slowing down for the last three words. His wink at Shizumu elicited a weak smile. Something was wrong; Shizumu usually rolled his eyes when he saw Keigo playing around with someone. “But I’d be happy to spare a bit of time to catch up with an old friend.”

“It is not a question of sparing time,” said the handler, trying to reinforce his injured sense of authority. “The New Sendai release concert is in two days. This is top priority. You have four hours and forty-two minutes remaining. Your early morning appointments have been cancelled. Kindly relinquish your other charges and we will escort them to the dormitories.”

Keigo’s eyes narrowed as two large bodyguards stepped into view. Now that was pushing it. Why do they even write protocols? He could feel faint threads of pain from Shizumu, though, and that was disconcerting. “I accept Shizumu into my charge, but I’ll be damned if I let you take Aki and the others before they’re ready.”

One of the guards spoke, a stout man with a thin beard; Keigo could feel little patience or esteem from him. “When the director gives an order, your place is to carry it out, mind-reader.”

“Yasuo, stand down,” said the handler.

“Shizumu,” said Keigo, projecting an aura of threat while motioning Shizumu into the room. “Please come in and make yourself at home.” He kept his eyes trained on the aggressive bodyguard’s.

Shizumu stepped gracefully across the threshold and stood side-by-side with Keigo, head raised in regal solidarity. The moment he crossed into the room, Keigo could feel the cracks and fissures in his soul, but he maintained the defiant stance nonetheless. “I’m sorry for the intrusion,” he said.

The tension in the air was palpable enough that even the handler seemed to feel it. “I’ll ask you one more time,” said the handler with forced politeness. “If you would see fit to release your other charges into our custody that you might devote your energies to Shizumu’s well-being for the full—”

“No,” said Keigo with a blunt finality. “But rest assured that Shizumu will receive the best care I can provide, as do all my charges.” The men stared at one another in silence for a moment.

“Alright,” said the handler, “please take care of him.” He glared at the guard and the shadowy entourage left down the corridor together, fuming.

Keigo closed the door before he let his composure evaporate. “I’m sorry you had to listen to that. It really is great to see you.”

“It’s okay,” said Shizumu weakly. “He deserved it. I doubt he’ll last long anyway.”

“Yes, well,” said Keigo, “‘even a fool has a talent.’ He might be good protection when you’re on tour, you never know.”

“That’s probably why they hired him,” said Shizumu. “They doubled my security detail last month.”

“For the upcoming concert?”

“Not exactly. Long story.” Shizumu rolled up his sleeve, revealing a silver tattoo that resembled a calligraphic flourish. “Do you mind?”

“Not at all,” said Keigo. “We’re all idols here. Well, except me, I guess—but I used to have a tattoo like that myself, so I don’t really count, do I?”

Shizumu smiled and traced a slender finger along one of the tattoo’s thicker lines. The air momentarily hazed around him and the divine radiance disappeared, leaving a rather plain and bedraggled young man. His hair was a mess, his pale skin covered in sweat, and his hands were shaking. It was all Keigo could do to pull up the chair for him before he collapsed on the floor.

“Shizu,” said a startled Keigo, “what happened?”

He paused before answering. “It’s been a busy week,” he said. “I’ve probably been overdoing it a bit.”

“A bit?” Keigo glared at him. Typical Shizumu, never blaming management for their inhuman demands.

“Look, I’m really sorry to impose,” said Shizumu. “I’m sure you’re busy with other charges, and—”

“It’s no trouble,” said Keigo. Even if it were, it’s not like he could turn Shizumu away. They’d been very close during their Solar Synergy days. Of course, that all changed after the psychic testing. Psych Support desperately needed more people, and a gifted empath who’d been an idol himself was a rare and ideal candidate.

Sadly, they opted to reorganized the whole group: After Keigo was shipped off for training, Shinji was moved into the acting stream and Taito into the pornography stream, leaving the two most popular members to debut alone. Stationed on different colonies, Keigo rarely saw them these days. He wondered sometimes if they still resented him for it, but he could feel nothing of the sort from Shizumu.

“You sure?” asked Shizumu. “The handler was arguing with the director; he said you were overbooked.”

“That’s an understatement,” said Keigo. “But really, it’s fine.”

Shizumu closed his eyes and rubbed at his neck. “Do you think there any chance you might, you know, be able to do something about the pain?”

It wasn’t like him to complain about things. ‘Stumble seven times, recover eight’ was like Shizumu’s life motto. For him to ask for help, it must have been really bad.

“Sure thing,” said Keigo. “Just sit back and relax.” He looked briefly toward the bunks and the bedroom; thankfully the others were all sleeping, so they didn’t need as much attention.

Leaning forward, Keigo opened up his mind and his heart, allowing Shizumu’s pain to vent in. At first, it was so strong that it made him wince. It was like a deluge of anguish and distress, flowing out from a punctured pipe. Keigo’s trained defenses took the brunt of it, though it buffeted at his mental walls for what felt like a solid minute or two.

Gradually, it began to subside, the emotions reaching an equilibrium between them. He could see Shizumu’s posture relax, his head sinking back onto the neck of the chair, his breaths becoming deeper and more regular. Keigo couldn’t drain his pain completely, but at least he could help bear the weight.

Shizumu had stopped trembling and was looking up at him with a bleary-eyed gratitude. “Thanks, Kei-chan. You have no idea how much better that feels. I’d forgotten what it’s like to be this light.”

“Anytime,” said Keigo, stretching his back. He was already at work kneading out the negativity; it would take a while to disperse this much.

“Sorry for putting you out tonight.”

“Stop apologizing,” said Keigo. “You’re going to be okay, Shizu. Take all the time you need.”

Shizumu smiled up at him. “I missed you.” The genuine affection he could feel from Shizumu was even clearer than he remembered. Keigo’s empathy had just begun to emerge the last time they’d been intimate, and it had still made an impression on him that he would never forget.

Unfortunately, Keigo couldn’t so much as hug him now; his tattoo had been removed when he’d stopped performing. Now he was just like any other fan, forbidden to ever touch an idol. He had to settle for draping a blanket over Shizumu’s shoulders. “I missed you too,” he said with a wistful smile. “Now shut up and get some sleep.”

After he finished writing Aki’s report and had a bite to eat, Keigo walked over to the bunks. He could see Shizumu’s eyes darting back and forth under their lids, his legs twitching occasionally as he performed in some sort of dream.

He wrapped his mind loosely around Shizumu’s; though he was sitting only a few metres away, it felt to him as though he were holding Shizumu close, keeping a close watch for anyone who might disturb his sleep.

Back when they’d shared a bunk in the PT dorms, Shizumu had always been the first one to fall asleep. The moment he lay down and closed his eyes, he was gone—and it wasn’t easy to wake him. He once managed to write “Property of Kei-chan” in blank ink across Shizumu’s chest without waking him. Their handlers had been furious, but Shizumu had simply laughed and smiled—he loved the attention.

When Keigo looked at the bunk beds, with their wooden ladders and rumpled sheets, he felt like he was in those old dorms again. The way every third bed had an arm or a leg inelegantly jutting out at an awkward angle was enough to make him forget for a moment that these were supposed to be paragons of grace and beauty.

But at the same time, he felt a profound sense of mono no aware, an awareness of the transience of things. It was as if he had returned to a childhood home to find a different family’s belongings adorning once-familiar rooms in unfamiliar arrangements. It was no longer his home, not in the same way he remembered.

Maybe it was just part of growing up. Keigo tried his best to care for his charges, to shield them from the stress of their tightly-scheduled lives. It felt weird to think of it as sheltering, though. As demanding as their job could be, their daily concerns were very different from those of their fans. Just as ‘a frog in the world does not know the great sea,’ a young idols could never truly experience the world outside.

After all, they had people to take care of every aspect of their life: chefs to prepare nutritious meals, trainers to guide them through detailed exercise routines, wardrobe teams to select appropriate fashions, facade artists to keep them looking their best. Only the richest of their fans might have access to a personal staff like that. It brought them to an almost superhuman level of perfection; they never had to worry about education or unemployment or finances.

What they had in resources, though, they lacked in autonomy. With the ever-vigilant security and constant escorts, the place often ended up feeling more like a prison than a palace. Yet as he walked by, Keigo could sense Aki’s dream: a free-flowing, exploratory dream about soaring through the sky with his friends. It was no doubt the sensation of the anti-gravity packs and holographic wings from the latest PT concert burned into his muscle memory, but still—how many kids could afford that kind of experience?

Idolatry > Active Units > S > Saisuke & Shizumu > Discussion > [Shop Pics] Shizumu at the Hot Springs 2086

1: §[email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 03:24:19.65 ID: fe5f2b7d5
I was wondering if any of you might happen to possess the shop pictures from Shizumu and Saisuke's
recent visit to the hot springs at the Venus terraforming station and the generosity of spirit to
consider sharing them. I heard there are a number of them showing the two in aesthetically pleasing
swimwear.

2: [email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 03:27:48.11 ID: f73de2f42
OMG YES Plz share, Shizumu so hawt! Topless Shizumu is rare sight for to see.
Only because official pictures are able to actually capture delicious body.

3: [email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 03:29:15.83 ID: 6bfdc0a1f
why not just buy them? their not that expsneive

4: [email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 03:29:19.20 ID: 6bfdc0a1f
expensive*

5: §[email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 03:31:36.55 ID: fe5f2b7d5
On the contrary, they are ever so expensive, or rather, one would think that the expense is relative
to one's means. Having just recently purchased the data crystals for the 4th Album Release Concert,
I'm afraid that I'm unable to afford to spend any more and still make the minimum debt payments to
the consortium this month.

6: [email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 03:34:01.87 ID: 6bfdc0a1f
sais so perfect tho so i had to buy them anyway
screw the consortium

7: §[email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 03:34:54.19 ID: fe5f2b7d5
That sounds ever so unwise, though. I'm not sure, they really do charge quite a bit for them.

8: [email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 03:41:22.68 ID: f73de2f42
WOO found a pictures. Here, look at hot Shizumu his hot torso: pic1 pic2 pic3

9: §[email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 03:43:29.59 ID: fe5f2b7d5
Ah, thank you kindly, Shizumunekyun. That's ever so kind and generous of you. Wow, Shizumu is ever
so attractive, even more than in last month's magazine photoshoot.

10: [email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 03:44:12.78 ID: f73de2f42
SOOO hot. Gotta love Shizumu. He so perfect body.

11: [email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 03:44:15.30 ID: 6bfdc0a1f
wow look at that hes got his arm around sai
they make such a genuine couple
they absolutely must be doing something under the water there

12: §[email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 03:45:59.63 ID: fe5f2b7d5
They are ever so close, those two. If only we could be so close to them.

13: [email protected]: 2086/04/30(Tue) 03:46:47.11 ID: f73de2f42
YES close, SO close. Shizumu is so so hot always!!

As Keigo came back to Shizumu’s bed, a twinge of distress woke him from his reverie. Pulling up a stool, he took a seat. He wished he could hold Shizumu’s hand to give him comfort; they’d made a tradition of it in the moments before curtain time. When they held hands, it was like they were sharing their stress, reassuring one another that there was no need to be nervous.

But now he had another way to stay close. Sitting back in his chair, he carefully felt out the boundaries of Shizumu’s dream. Once he was ready, he took a deep breath and dove in.

The countless hands were everywhere. He twisted to try and get away, but someone in the crowd had him by the wrist. His skin burned, not used to being touched. As he kicked hard with his one free leg, he felt a sickening thud and heard a scream. An arm around his neck pulled him back as another groped blindly at his belt.

He kicked again, but something caught his ankle this time. He heard fabric tear as what was left of his shirt was pulled away. He looked pleadingly around, but none of his assailants met his gaze; their eyes were all hungrily eating up his body. He felt hands rubbing over his chest and grabbing hold of his crotch.

His exposed tattoo had started to glow brightly, iridescent filigree shimmering into a dangerous shade of red. As he swung his free hand at the invasive arms, every one he touched recoiled like a startled animal. It was hard to tell his own shouts from those of his attackers.

He felt a thud across his face and his ears rang as he fell to the solid floor, relieved that at least one angle of approach was now blocked. He grasped the arm that held his neck and felt the expected jolt course through him, then heard the loudest shout yet, and a stench like burning meat pervaded the air.

When the grip at his neck slackened, he pulled free from the smoking arm; the hands—ever close yet losing their grip—were beginning to fall away. There was more shouting, cursing, and gurgling before he dared to open his eyes again.

He could see nothing but a pile of charred and melting bodies, torn clothing lying around as if there had been some kind of explosion. He skin still stung, afterimages of the seared fingerprints demanding to be washed off. He tried in vain to calm his rapid breathing, but could do little to shake the enormity of the morbid scene around him.

As his tattoo faded back to its usual silver as if nothing had happened, he found himself wondering why. Why had they done this? How could they? Everyone knew what would happen. The scent of dissolving flesh and the sight of the contorted smiles were gruesome. He choked and began to cry, and as he cried, he just barely managed to dissociate from the dream.

Keigo woke with a start, nearly knocking over his chair. He couldn’t get the putrid smell out of his nose. The faces had seemed almost feral before the biotoxin had kicked in. He wondered if they would have still decided it was worth it had they known what it would feel like firsthand.

He loved and respected most of the fans, but with over two billion of them, some were downright insane. And while he felt the managers were to blame for skimping on security, he couldn’t bear to see Shizumu hurt. If he’d been there, he would have fought just as vehemently to protect him.

Why hadn’t they brought more guards? Why were they travelling at street level? Keigo couldn’t help feeling that it was somehow his own fault—that if Solar Synergy had still been together, perhaps such a thing could have been prevented.

Shizumu woke up a moment later.

“Sorry,” said Keigo. “I didn’t mean to wake you.”

“It’s okay,” said Shizumu. “I was having a bad dream anyway.”

Keigo was looking down at Shizumu’s fluffy blue socks. “Shizumu,” he said, unsure what to say in this kind of situation, “I saw what happened in your dream.”

Shizumu looked first at his left eye and then his right. His face was expressionless, but Keigo could feel a mix of surprise and vulnerability from him.

Keigo cleared his throat. “I hope you’ll forgive me for intruding on your privacy… I just—I felt you were in distress, and I wanted to make sure you were okay, so I—”

“Did you manage to get any sleep?” asked Shizumu. Keigo was getting an odd blend of feelings from him still, but wasn’t sure what to make of it.

“No, too much work to do,” said Keigo. “Besides, Aki’s using my bed. Look, if something like that happened to you, I couldn’t—”

“Keigo,” said Shizumu flatly, “I’m fine.” How did that one go again? ‘Poke around in a bush, and a snake might come out.’ Shizumu didn’t seem to feel fine, but pressing him about it would be the wrong thing to do.

They sat together in silence. Keigo was still feeling queasy after what he had seen, but after a time, he started to feel a warm affection from Shizumu. It was like a bit of relief that someone knew about the incident and sympathized. Management had probably banned anyone from talking about it.

“Shizumu,” he said, “have you ever thought of leaving this place?”

Shizumu said nothing for a moment, but Keigo already knew what his answer would be. “I can’t, Kei-chan,” said Shizumu. “No one wearing this tattoo can leave the complex, you know that. Look at all the bullshit we have to go through to go on tour.”

“But how can you stay here? They take advantage of you and work you half to death. If it weren’t for Psych Support—”

“If it weren’t for you,” said Shizumu, “I couldn’t do it. I’d have to worry about paying the bills and putting food on the table. I might have to take a ‘real’ job. I might have to work at a convenience store or a gas station. I might have to find a wife and have kids. Or worse yet, file taxes.”

Keigo could feel Shizumu’s sincerity; it was steadying.

“It’s not the place that keeps me here, Keigo, it’s the work—the people,” said Shizumu. “If I didn’t have access to venues like this, my only audience would be my dog.”

Keigo felt a bit of sadness well up at the thought, though he couldn’t tell whose it was. “But Shizumu, listen,” said Keigo. “The managers, the directors—they don’t care one bit for your wellbeing.” Keigo sometimes felt like he was the only one who did.

“They’re just doing their jobs,” said Shizumu.

“But all they care about is—”

“Money,” said Shizumu. “They care about making money, money without which none of this would be possible.” He gestured at the chambers around them and the enormous self-contained complex they both knew was beyond. Crowded as it was, the place was more luxurious than even the classiest orbital casino hotel. Keigo had become so accustomed to it that he sometimes forgot the impression it made on outsiders.

“Yeah, but—”

“They know what they’re doing, Kei-chan. They’ve been doing it since before our parents were born. On my own, I’d be lucky to get a few gigs at the local club. But with their help, their resources—whatever their motivation—I’ve got half the world as my audience.” His eyes shone and Keigo could feel his enthusiasm.

“I just wish you didn’t have to go through the pain, Shizu,” said Keigo.

“I know,” he said, “but it’s my choice. I choose to. I hope you can understand that.”

Keigo looked up from his socks.

“I want you to know how grateful I am to have you rooting for me and supporting me, even if I don’t get to see you as often as I’d like. It means a lot to me.”

“Shizu,” said Keigo, for once having difficulty containing his own emotions.

“Come on, let me show the world what I’m all about.” Shizumu made a cheeky photoshoot pose and Keigo couldn’t help but smile back.

“You got it,” said Keigo. “I figure this room could use a few Shizumu posters to brighten it up anyway.”

Shizumu laughed. Even without his digital facade, with every freckle, pockmark, and wrinkle on display—every imperfection that the holographers would work for hours to eliminate—his smile was stunning.

“I wish I could kiss you again,” said Keigo. “It’s been so long. If there’s one thing I miss most, it’s that.”

Shizumu giggled. “You know,” he said, “there’s something else we could do instead.”

Keigo rolled his eyes. “I can’t do that either, Shizu.”

“Oh, come on,” said Shizumu. “You haven’t even heard my idea yet.”

“You and your ideas,” said Keigo, but he leaned forward to listen nonetheless.

“All right, so: You can get in my head, right?” said Shizumu. “How deep can you go?”

Keigo coughed, eliciting a laugh.

“I mean, like, you can read my feelings, right? What about my literal thoughts?”

“It’s hard to explain,” said Keigo. “It’s not like I can listen to the words you’re thinking to yourself inside your head, but I can tell how you feel about whatever’s on your mind. Especially if you’re in this room. It’s built to channel emotions. If I’m really tuned into you, I can even learn things that you might not consciously realize yourself.”

“What about… physical sensations?”

Keigo thought about this for a moment and licked his lips. “You’ve thought a lot about this,” he said.

“More than you can imagine,” said Shizumu. “‘Learn the rules so you know how to break them properly,’ isn’t that what you used to say?”

Keigo laughed. When he was with Shizumu, sometimes it felt like they were still just two mischievous young PTs goofing around.

“So what if you can’t touch me? That doesn’t mean you can’t feel me.” He smiled.

“Wow, Shizu, you really have thought a lot about this.”

Shizumu smirked. “So how would you like a private idol strip show?”

Keigo’s eyes went as wide as his grin. “Won’t the tattoo kill the power if you get naked? I mean, the radius on that pulse is huge, and it’s not like I’ve got any windows.”

“Got any candles?”

Keigo laughed. Their growing excitement was playing off one another, a mischievous echo in Keigo’s head. “Someone’s bound to notice the power outage though.”

“Eventually,” said Shizumu. “We’ll have to be quick.”

Keigo walked over to the cabinet, shaking his head in disbelief, and took out a few tea candles. “Some people get more mature when they get older, did anyone ever tell you that, Shizu? You’re as full of ridiculous ideas as ever.”

“Remember that time we stole all the cookies from the dining hall?” asked Shizumu. “I think I ate more that one night than I have in all the years since.”

“Our trainer was so mad,” said Keigo.

“He had me doing triple sets for weeks after that,” said Shizumu. “It was brutal.”

Keigo lit the candles and set them on the nearby tables and cabinets. “He was probably afraid you’d gain weight.”

“They all took everything so much more seriously than we did,” said Shizumu. “That’s probably how we made it through. We didn’t care.”

Keigo smiled as he sat back down in his chair. Shizumu slid the opposite chair away, then sat cross-legged on the floor. He lifted his shirt over his head, leaving a white tank top. A little silver pendant with the Solar Synergy symbol lay against his chest.

“I guess that symbol stands for ‘Saisuke & Shizumu’ now,” said Keigo.

“It’ll always mean Solar Synergy to me,” said Shizumu, lifting the tank top off and tossing it toward Keigo.

Keigo caught it and laughed. “I wonder how much your fans would pay for this.” Shizumu’s scent on it brought back memories.

“Don’t let the managers hear you,” he said. “They’d start making us change clothes every hour so they could start a new line of merchandise.”

Keigo grinned. “I call your boxers.”

“Perv,” laughed Shizumu. He stood up and slid off the track pants he was wearing, leaving just the blue boxers and fluffy socks. The tattoo began to glow.

“Shh… don’t laugh so loud. What if Aki wakes up?” said Keigo.

Shizumu smiled as he slid his thumbs into his waistband. One swift motion later and the entire room went dark except for five glowing candles.

Keigo hadn’t even noticed the ambient hum of the devices that comprised his chambers until they had shut down. “You got a light switch hidden in there or something?”

As his eyes began adjusting to the dark, he reached out with his mind and felt his charges. They were all still asleep, except Shizumu, who had moved closer and was now on his side of the table, barely a metre away. He began shifting his focus, drawing his psychic attention back from the others and attending to Shizumu alone. Keigo could feel his every breath, his every thought, as if they were his own.

“See for yourself,” said Shizumu.

The candle behind him backlit his silhouette, delineating his slim torso and long legs. The candles on the side table lit his stomach and crotch, a thin trail of hair tracing its way downward from his belly button to a wispy tuft around his uncut cock.

“Taito may have gotten into the porn stream on sheer size,” said Keigo, “but your cock is the sexiest I’ve ever seen.”

“Their loss,” said Shizumu with a grin, flexing it once or twice in front of Keigo’s face.

Keigo could feel his own cock twitching in his pants in sympathy. As much practice as he’d had distinguishing feelings, he hadn’t ever felt something like this. His and Shizumu’s pleasure were beginning to intermingle. Every move Shizumu made echoed in his own body before he’d even observed it consciously. He reached down to undo his own pants, but Shizumu shook his head.

“Just feel it out,” said Shizumu. “I want to see if I can make you come just through this.”

“If you insist,” said Keigo.

“Oh, I do,” said Shizumu with a playful smile.

“Though you could probably do that even without my ESP.”

Shizumu took hold of his own cock and slid the foreskin back. The head glistened in the candlelight. Keigo’s memories of having it in his mouth, under the blanket at the dorm, backstage at the PT auditorium, even once in the cargo hold of their shuttle—they all came and felt almost real. He licked his lips again and looked up into Shizumu’s eyes. The angles of his face seemed starker in the dim light.

“Spit on it,” said Shizumu. “If you dare to get close enough.”

“Getting me back for that game of truth or dare back on Europa?” asked Keigo.

“Hey, you’re not the one who had to streak through the town!”

Keigo held tight to the arms of the chair to steady himself, lest he trip and touch Shizumu’s body accidentally, or worse yet, on purpose. A mere inch from the head, he let few drips of saliva fall down onto it before sitting back again.

“I feel so tuned into you,” said Keigo, savouring the sensation of the drop trickling down the length of Shizumu’s cock. “It’s almost unreal.”

Shizumu grinned and began rubbing himself. Every so often, he let up, sliding his palm a few times over the slick head. Keigo squirmed a bit in the chair. He cast his eyes up and down Shizumu’s body. They rested on his lustful face, then on the hand that was feeling his own chest, then the cock he was pumping with alternating speed and pressure.

“It’s so hot to have you watching me,” said Shizumu.

Keigo’s own muscles tensed as he felt an invisible hand tweak his left nipple. He shuddered as he felt the shadow of Shizumu’s slender fingers squeeze his shaft. He felt his tongue rubbing along his own lips, his feet rising up on his own toes, his butt clench as his own hips thrust forward. He was seeing all of this unfold in front of him on Shizumu’s body, not his own, yet he could hardly tell the difference.

“I’m getting close,” said Shizumu. “Can you feel it?”

Keigo nodded. Shizumu slowed the pace a few times, edging himself forward ever so gradually until he saw Keigo’s white-knuckled grip on the arms of his chair, body shuddering with pleasure.

“God, Shizu, it’s like it’s reverberating through my body. You’re—we’re so horny I can almost taste it.”

“Haven’t had time alone for almost a week,” said Shizu, jerking off furiously now, the pendant swinging against his chest. “Ready?”

“I’ve been ready for—”

Shizumu grinned. “Here goes—”

He arched his back and thrust forward as he came, shooting his load a good metre and a half, straight at Keigo’s face. His cock quivered with each spurt, as did Keigo’s inside his pants. Three of Shizumu’s spurts made it to Keigo’s lips, though, whereas Keigo just felt his pants grow wet. But their eyes were locked and they felt like they hadn’t felt for years.

Shizumu grinned. He always loved pleasing his fans.

Keigo licked what his tongue could reach. “Finally I get to taste you. At least your tattoo doesn’t affect this.”

“Good thing,” said Shizumu. “It’d suck to take a piss and end up dissolving the toilet.”

Keigo began to laugh heartily, but caught himself partway, not wanting to wake the others. Spreading out his emotions took more concentration than usual, as his head swam, but it seemed they were all still sleeping soundly.

“Here,” said Shizumu, taking a marker from a nearby desk. “This is for you.” He picked up and autographed his blue boxers, handing them to Keigo once he was done. “You can keep them or sell them or whatever. Knock yourself out.”

Keigo smiled. “I could buy my own ship for how much these would go for,” he said. “But I think I’d rather keep them.” After all, they smelled like Shizumu, and facade or no, he smelled sweet.

“Suit yourself,” said Shizumu, putting on the rest of his clothes. “Wonder if the crowd will know I’m not wearing underwear for part of the video!”

Keigo smiled. “We’d better get cleaned up. Not that much time left.”

The lights came back on shortly after Shizumu was dressed. “Alright, alright. Kei-chan… thank you. Really.”

The announcer’s voice boomed over the loudspeaker, filling the arena: “Here they come! Let’s hear it for SAISUKE – AND – SHIZUMU!”

One of their hit songs began to play, but Keigo could barely hear it over the roar of the audience. It’d been so long since he’d actually been to one of the concerts in person that he’d almost forgotten what it was like. The emotions of the crowd were almost overpowering, but they were so raw and unanimous that it seemed like a single entity.

The sounds and sparkles were bright, but he had no trouble seeing Shizumu’s shining perfection. His facade was in full swing, this time making him glow like an angel as he flew around above the stage. Compared to the tsunami of longing from the crowd, Shizumu’s joy and exaltation shone as clear to Keigo as his massive holographic wings.

A single tear rolled down Keigo’s cheek. He finally felt like he could understand why Shizumu put up with it all. As he felt Shizumu’s glee soaring in an expanding spiral above the stage, for a moment, he could almost feel the sensation of wind across his skin.

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