Summary: Rowing Club AU. A ficlet set after To Be Found Next Summer on a Riverbank. "It's called suffering for your art," Sho had joked.
Word Count: 600+
Disclaimer: All not mine.
Notes: Thank you to forochel for looking through this. This was meant to be a drabble, but obviously things turned out differently. The title is a reference to Seamus Heaney's lovely poem of the same name.
Ohno was aware that Nino refusing to speak to him was entirely his fault.
("It's called suffering for your art," Sho had joked, but when he'd caught sight of Ohno's expression he had suggested giving Nino some time.)
"I'm just wondering when you got the chance to do it," said Nino, when Ohno tried to apologise again, early one morning. He was standing there on the grass in his rowing shorts and a t-shirt Ohno was quite certain used to be his, and all Ohno wanted to do was to touch him, to have Nino say it was okay without all of the nasty things that had to go in between.
"It was that night," Ohno told him.
"Which night?" asked Nino.
"You know," said Ohno meaningfully, and when Nino merely raised an eyebrow he mumbled, "When we had a day off from training because of terrible weather and we want back to your place and we... well."
Nino quite evidently remembered this, because he was blushing furiously. "And?"
"And then you fell asleep," said Ohno.
"And then you nicked it."
"Well," said Ohno cautiously, "I actually asked."
"Oh, did you?"
"I did," said Ohno, "And you said that I could take whatever it was I was digging around for as long as I got back under the covers because it was freezing and you didn't know where your trousers had gone."
"Ah," said Nino.
"I'm sorry," said Ohno after a long moment in which Nino studied his feet and Ohno studied the way his mouth turned down at the corners, perfect for drawing. Or kissing, but Nino would let him do neither. "I really am."
"You're not," Nino told him, "Because it's an amazing piece and you're glad you did it."
And in many ways he was correct - Ohno was sorry for not telling Nino properly, but he didn't actually regret the deed itself. Sometimes it surprised Ohno how Nino just knew these things; most of the time, however, he put it down to Nino being Nino, sharp and clever and all too lovely. Ohno had no such talent himself, and right now he was no longer sure what Nino wanted - whether it was an apology, plain honesty, or just to step past Ohno and get his boat into the water.
"I suppose you're right," he said eventually.
"You suppose?" said Nino, and when Ohno glanced at his face he was frowning, but it was more considering than angry.
"I'm still sorry," said Ohno truthfully, "Although not as much as you might like me to be."
After a pause, Nino nodded, with that vaguely exasperated not-quite-smile that Ohno liked to think was reserved for him alone. "I'm sorry for walking out of the exhibition," he said, before quickly adding, "But it's still your fault."
"Okay," said Ohno.
"And you owe me," Nino continued, grabbing Ohno by the wrist and pulling him in the direction of the boathouse, where his single scull was still waiting on its trestles. "You can start by helping me carry my boat out."
"I always carry your boat out."
"And that's quite possibly the only reason why I have you around."
"Good to know," said Ohno, wriggling his arm out of Nino's grip and taking his hand instead, curling their fingers together with a thrill of relief.
Later, when Ohno was pushing Nino's boat out, Nino paused over his oars and asked, "Is the exhibition open on Tuesday evenings?"
Assemblage and installation
ASSEMBLAGE: oil, acrylic, housepaint, fabric, cardboard, crushed glass, metal, brocade, buttons, beads, paper, and KDDI cell phone decorated with rhinestones and swarovski beads on canvas; price on inquiry
Hardwood shelf carved in style of Taisho period; price on inquiry
Hand-crafted jewellery; prices on inquiry
Glass and iron picture frames; prices on inquiry (photographs not included)
Neriage bowl and teacups; prices on inquiry
Imari sun-plates on loan from Tessaido (Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto)
Stamp collection on loan from Aiba Yuusuke
Baby shoes on loan from Sakurai Yukiko
KNTV Guide and FILM 2.0 magazines on loan from Ikuta Hiromi
Bronzed Nintendo controller not for sale