by Rei (レイ)
illustrated by ah_chan
Sato always knew that his family wasn’t normal. He knew it the moment his mother explained why they named him Sato.
Well, we actually wanted to name you Sabbath, but that sounded a little weird, can you imagine calling you Sabbath-kun? It’s also a little hard to write out in katakana isn’t it? So we decided on Sabato, but your first cousin is named Sabato, do you remember him? He came to our house last year for Halloween, dressed as a psychopathic killer, I remembered how you screamed when he tried to stab you–
(At this point, Sato shut out his mother.)
Sato always knew his family wasn’t normal. Normal mothers don’t keep dead plants in the house. Normal fathers don’t buy skeletons to place in doorways to improve feng-shui. Normal sisters don’t keep spiders and snakes in their rooms (tarantulas! Green boas! Sato was horrified). No, his family wasn’t normal.
Which was odd, because everyone at school thought he had the coolest family ever.
Sato goes to a normal school, with normal people, with normal teachers. He likes that. He likes that a lot.
He eats lunch with Endo every day, who usually has a sandwich while Sato eats his homemade bento. Today, his bento includes rice with over-grilled pieces of nori artistically placed to look like a broken heart; some sort of vegetable that Sato hopes didn’t come from his mother’s garden and a meaty looking substance that clumps together. Sato pokes it twice just to make sure it wasn’t alive (it wasn’t).
Nice Bento, says Endo.
Very funny, says Sato.
After lunch, he and Endo both still hasn’t figured out what the meaty substance was. Some things are better left unknown, thinks Sato.
Sato listens to Kobukuro and ELLEGARDEN and plays arcade games in his spare time. He likes graphic t-shirts and lives cargo shorts most of the time. By his definition, he’s very normal indeed.
Endo on the other hand, listens to D’ESPAIRSRAY and jealkb in his free time and wears pants with chains and more zips than he can actually count. Sometimes, Endo wears striped coloured socks and black ripped arm-warmers. He has five piercings; three in his ears, one in his lip and another on his right eyebrow. He smokes sometimes, behind the large water tank on top of the school roof – always Mild Seven, never any other brand.
Still pretty normal by Sato’s definition.
Endo likes his family.
Sato thinks that maybe Endo isn’t so all right in the head, after all Endo is normal; his family does not treat him like an experiment (Sato remembers that time he woke up with the word meat written on his left cheek), when he wakes up he does not see black walls instead of white (Sato is guessing, he hasn’t exactly been into Endo’s house, but he figures Endo’s house must look pretty normal), his family does not gang up on him to scare the living daylights out of his dates (the last time he brought a girl home, his father had a noose tied around his neck; he still can’t bring himself to call Ayumi) — he could go on and write some sort of a book.
Endo likes coming over once in a while and unlike the others, he isn’t fazed by the level of weirdness that goes on in his family. Sato’s sister loves Endo and brings him blood-red candy whenever he comes visit. Endo at least, has enough sense to not ask what’s inside the candy when he eats it.
Endo has a tattoo. A black fleur-de-lis about the size of his palm, on his stomach — Sato knows. Sometimes, when they’re both in class and Endo stretches too high, his school blouse rides up and Sato can always see black edges and nothing more.
He would like to see more though, see what the whole design looks like, feel the design beneath his skin, which is a rather weird thought so he tries not to think about it so much. He never asks Endo though, although Sato is sure he will not mind showing it to him.
Endo works part-time at a video store, twice a week (Thursday and Friday), always night shifts. It’s the time when only the perverts come out, he tells Sato’s parents. (Perverts are always good, says Sato’s mother. Why is my family so weird, thinks Sato.)
The video store he works at is never updated with the latest movies; instead, it has a very impressive pornographic section. Sato knows, he’s been to Endo’s work place enough times to know that the schoolgirl porn is always on the left, second shelf to the top. Not that he watches schoolgirl porn (yet), but who knows, that information might come in handy some day. Sometimes Endo gives him discounts if he rents enough videos, it’s a good enough perk.
Sato works part-time at a karaoke place, twice a week (Monday and Wednesday), sometimes he works the night shifts but if he’s lucky, he’ll get to work the day shift.
He isn’t lucky very often.
Endo comes sometimes, and flirts with the girl behind the drinks counter. Hazumi is her name, and she has a rather reputable reputation. Endo never manages to get anywhere with her anyway, but that’s probably him not trying hard enough, Sato tells himself.
Sato has crushes all the time. Usually they don’t pan out. Or if they do, the relationship is ruined once the family is introduced. He likes girls who smell like flowers and sunny days, with smiles that remind him of the endless blue skies, who would wear pretty yellow sundresses as they walk along the beach holding hands. Once though, he dated a girl who didn’t mind his family, which he thought was great and started making plans about marrying her. That weekend they met, she came dressed in one of those white gothic lolita dresses with a lace patch over her eye and fake blood smeared on her lips.
That put a damper on his plans.
He thinks that maybe, he will die unmarried, unloved and a virgin.
When asked when everything happened, Sato will lie and say that it was a Sunday. Which Endo will play along and agree, because it actually happened on a Friday, when he walked into Endo’s video place at 9.54pm, slightly drunk and upset after his latest date, Miyuki, told him in no uncertain terms that they were better off “as friends”.
She dumped me, wails Sato and slumps onto the counter, doing a very good imitation of a dead whale.
Here, have another beer, says Endo and pushes an open can towards him.
Half an hour later, Endo has him up against the counter, hands on his shirt and sucking on his tongue, while Sato has his hands on the waistband of Endo’s pants, which are black and very much in the way. He tells this to Endo, who laughs and says, sorry, I’m taking advantage of you. Its okay, says Sato and watches the way Endo’s long earrings catch the shitty video store light, thinking fuzzily through the haze in his brain that maybe it’s true.
Then Endo’s hands move lower and Sato buckles against his hands and tries not to bite down on his tongue. Endo’s hands are hot and rough and the metal rings on his fingers are burning a hole through his skin. Sato wants more, and more. Then Endo smiles against Sato’s chin and jerk his hands once, and twice again, sending Sato slamming against the counter, his hands skittering over the smooth top and brushing against the empty beer cans. They make a light hollow metallic sound as they crash to the floor.
But Sato is too busy paying attention to Endo’s hands and Endo’s mouth and Endo’s eyes.
Endo fucks Sato in the pornographic section, with Sato’s hands braced against the pale orange walls. And if Sato turns his head left, he can see that’s where all the bestiality porn is kept which is sort of weird because Endo is fucking him and he’s making all these broken noises at the back of his throat and he knows that he will always associate his first time with Endo, pornography and bestiality.
That thought troubles him a little, but Endo is hitting all the right spots and his hands are warm and rough and oh god–
The “after” is actually more uncomfortable than just mere awkward, especially when it involves them being rather naked and Sato being more sober than he was an hour ago. It also has Sato leaning against the counter wearing Endo’s pants worrying over how his ass hurts and Endo on the floor beside him, in Sato’s white boxers with red lips printed all over them and nothing else.
It’s a nice sight and Sato appreciates it a lot, but it’s still very awkward.
Sato though, is anything but unpractical because it’s past twelve now and the trains would’ve stopped running an hour ago so he doesn’t say no when Endo offers to bring him back to his place for the night. Because well, the trains have stopped and he had no way of going home and Endo stays only ten minutes away.
Yes, Sato is very practical indeed.
They make it through the front door with their hips firmly glued together, Endo’s hands in Sato’s hair and Sato’s hands on Endo’s ass. Mnnn, says Endo but Sato is too busy focusing on how he’s rubbing against Endo and oh man those zips and chains are making Endo writhe even more because it’s like hard-on on hard-on and oh god this was some sort of weird frottage thing wasn’t it, because Endo can’t stop making these hot little noises and Sato can’t stop grinding down.
Endo makes a particularly choked sound in the back of his throat before Sato pushes him onto the floor and straddles his hips before leaning down to kiss Endo, tongue slipping in easily as his hands tugs on Endo’s shirt with their stupid chains and ripped holes which only serve to turn Sato on even more.
This frottage thing was getting pretty handy because oh god Endo was moaning and making those hot growling noises and he couldn’t stop touching Endo and Endo’s hands are on his ass and making him go faster and oh fuck–.
In the morning, Sato learns a couple of things.
First, Endo’s bedroom walls are not white, instead they’re lime green. Painted three months ago, he informs Sato when the two of them are very much naked on Endo’s bed.
Second, Endo has a very comfortable bed. Sato knows this first hand. And second. And third.
Third, Endo’s parents are seldom home, which explains the daily sandwiches because there’s a convenience store just right across the street. (He knows the way well, they had to make an emergency stop last night, on the other hand, the whip cream was really tasty.)
Fourth, Endo’s tattoo is a fleur-de-lis, but Sato already knew that a while back. What he didn’t know was that Endo designed it, with all its angular sides all stretched over Endo’s taunt stomach. Now, Sato is well-acquainted with the tattoo and Endo’s stomach. He’s licked it enough over the past 8 hours to commit that slice of skin to memory.
Sato doesn’t tell his parents about this new change of plans, but they find out anyway. (He doesn’t know how — Endo hasn’t told him that it was probably because Sato started going home in his clothes.)
And the parental unit promptly sends Endo a package, much to Sato’s horror, including in no particular order; a bouquet of dead flowers and black roses, together with rusty handcuffs, red candles, studded dog collars, a long black velvet leash and a large silver knife (the note said for sacrifices).
Sato specifically told Endo not to tell him what was inside the package too.
At the end of it, Sato’s mother still cultivates dead plants in her little garden lovingly. His father still brings back odd objects to display around the house to improve feng-shui (how was a stuffed crocodile suppose to improve feng-shui? No, Sato did not want to know). His sister still keeps her tarantulas next to her pillows and allows her pet boa the free crawl of the room. Yes, not quite normal indeed.
Sato’s not given up on the idea of normal though, neither has the both of them given up on the girls but sometimes, Sato heads over to Endo’s house where they might fool around on Endo’s large and comfortable bed or maybe Endo will feel a little kinky and fuck him while he’s bending over the kitchen counter. Or maybe Endo will put the collar and leash to good use and Sato will have to limp back home, sore and tired and sticky.
Sato is currently eighteen years old and it’s probably the closest thing to normal that he knows.