Everything about Leorio was so damn comforting, and it had been so long — too long — since Kurapika had been comforted.
His eyes were itchy and swollen from crying, and he was simultaneously nauseous and headachy; Kurapika felt like a vase that had been shattered and then carelessly put back together with weak glue. One wrong move, and he would break all over again, sobbing like a newborn.
But Leorio’s touch was gentle, soothing, and Kurapika melted into him like he’d always been meant for it. It wasn’t fair to either of them — and it especially wasn’t fair to Leorio, because he was just trying to be a good friend, had always been trying to be a good friend. Deep down inside, Kurapika knew he had no right to dump all his emotional baggage…show more content… Leorio smelled like juniper and sage, old books and cigarette smoke, the spicy-sharp cologne he’d always disliked. It made him smile, but it also made him feel sad, in some deeply undefinable way, and Kurapika knew he had to pull away, now, before the feeling overwhelmed him.
“I’m…” Kurapika lifted his head, sighing quietly into the space between them. “Leorio, I’m so sorry, I…”
A hiccup interrupted him, sudden and embarrassing, and Kurapika blushed, realizing how horrible he must look with his tear-stained face and runny nose. He wiped the snot away with the back of one hand, wincing internally at the indignity of it all, but Leorio didn’t seem to mind his hiccups or the conspicuous smear he’d left on the front of his dress shirt; there was nothing but kindness in Leorio’s big brown eyes, and Kurapika would always be grateful for that.
“No, I’m sorry,” Leorio replied, self-consciously rubbing the back of his neck. “I didn’t mean...I didn’t mean any of those things I said. I was just so angry…” he drifted off, into silence, his Adam’s apple bobbing as he swallowed. “...but that’s no excuse. I shouldn’t have yelled at…show more content… “I yelled right back, you know. It’s okay, Leorio, really. I deserved some of that. I’ve been a terrible friend, to you, to Gon…” Kurapika squared his shoulders, meeting Leorio’s gaze head-on. “Can you forgive me?”
Leorio exhaled shakily, a cocktail of relief-fondness-surprise flashing across his expression; it used to annoy Kurapika how easy it was to read him, but now it just made him smile, the way Leorio could never hide anything, the way he was always so upfront.
“Of course I forgive you, Pika. I —” Leorio paused, uncharacteristically hesitant, his brows furrowed in consternation.
“Yes?” Kurapika asked, suddenly nervous.
“Nothing, it’s...ugh. Nevermind. Can we...can we please just sit down and talk for a bit?” Leorio’s voice softened, became pleading, “Please?”
“Ah...sure,” Kurapika mumbled, shuffling over to the bed on stiff, awkward legs to take a seat on the very edge of the mattress. He felt vaguely uncomfortable, and wondered if it would have helped had he chosen the couch instead, but the thought of crossing that room suddenly seemed like too much effort; it didn’t really matter anyway, because Leorio simply knelt down in front of him, firmly taking his hands in his