My first finished piece of the new year and it's my first ever attempt at smut. Happy 2016, everyone.
The idea for this fic came from a conversation I had with Oort on AO3 (yo, thanks for talking about this with me!)

Aural (adjective) au·ral \ˈȯr-əl\: of or relating to the ear or to the sense of hearing

The only reason Youichi's still up is because his legs are restless. It happens sometimes when he moves around too much or too little during the day, and today was definitely the former. Coach had been less than pleased with Seidou's performance during the last game, despite their eventual win, so he'd sent the team on sprints until the first years had all dropped. Youichi, of course, had to keep up his reputation as a senpai and first string player, so he'd been one of the few standing at the end. It's definitely taking its toll now, though.

Youichi flexes his feet and rolls his ankles, staring up at the ceiling with a frown. He stretches a little and shifts to face the wall, wishing that there was something that would help him get to sleep. He doesn't want to be wiped out for morning practice tomorrow.

There's a scratch and a click as a key slides into the door. Youichi doesn't look over, but there's a flash of light on the wall from outside before the door clicks shut again. He hears shuffling of feet as shoes are kicked off and is that… giggling? Yes, it's definitely laughter, and that's definitely two people, not just Sawamura. It's immediately obvious who the other person is when Youichi hears the smack of lips on skin: Miyuki. He and Sawamura have been out to the team for about a month, though Youichi suspects they've been seeing each other much longer.

"Ugh, stop," Sawamura sighs between kisses. "You've been looking at me like that all night and it's driving me insane."

"We could do something about that. I know it would be difficult for someone loud like you," Miyuki quietly teases in the near silence of the room, "but do you think you could be quiet if we…?"

There's a scandalized gasp from Sawamura. "You think we could… in here? Now?" For once, he ignores Miyuki's insult entirely.

"Kuramochi's asleep, isn't he? As long as we don't make too much noise, it shouldn't be a problem."

Youichi opens his mouth to argue that point, but: "'Shouldn't be a problem'? You're not the one he's going to murder if he wakes up and finds us both! Somehow it'll be my fault, even though you're the one who suggested it!" Damn right it will. Youichi grins and mentally picks through his favorite punishments.

Then there's a rustling sound and a sudden moan from Sawamura. Youichi's mouth opens again but his vocal chords lock up, unable to speak as his throat goes dry. "Convinced?" Miyuki murmurs, and Youichi can distantly hear the grin in his voice. Youichi's still stuck on that noise Sawamura just made.

"Shut up and keep doing that," Sawamura replies.

Miyuki laughs a little breathlessly and oh god now Youichi hears the bedsprings creak and the bedframe shake a little as they both scramble on. More giggling, a muffled ahh from Sawamura, an ouch as someone's elbow hits against something sensitive. Then it's just sounds of kissing and panting.

Youchi's mouth is still open, but now instead of shouting at the two idiots to knock it off and keep their hands to themselves, his breaths go shallow and he can feel his heart pounding as if he'd just finished up those wind sprints again.

Come on, he tells himself. Tell them to stop messing around. One word will do it; Sawamura, at least, will be too embarrassed to continue. Miyuki… well, Youchi's not sure Miyuki has any shame, but if Sawamura decides that they're done for the night, he can't picture Miyuki ignoring Sawamura's wishes. It'll only take one word to end this. That's not hard, right?

So why can't he do anything but keep listening?

"Nngh, oh yeah, Miyuki," Sawamura sighs, and oh damn. Heat sears through Youichi until his whole body feels flushed. Every nerve is tingling with desire and their sounds keep replaying in his mind.

"Sawamura," Miyuki breathes, voice huskier than Youichi's ever heard, so intimate that his embarrassment skyrockets still further. It's also turning him on? Youichi's hand slides to his stomach, then to the dusting of hair below, and –

Wait, no, why is this hot? Sawamura's obnoxious and not sexy at all, and Miyuki's a nerdlord with horrible fashion sense. They're his friends; he's not attracted to them.

He swallows with difficulty and takes advantage of the noise they're making to roll onto his back. He can stare at the ceiling and count the flaws in the paint – that distracts him from his thoughts sometimes. Yeah, he can do that until his tongue comes unglued from the roof of his mouth and he can yell down at the stupid couple in the bottom bunk for going at it with company in the room. Youchi's breath shakes. God, what morons they are. Both of them are so dead tomorrow.

"Ah, faster," Sawamura demands, louder than he's been so far, and then Youichi's jerking himself off before it even registers that he's pushed down his waistband. He bites his lip and strokes in time with the creaks from Sawamura's bed and the other noises they're making. Shit, why is Youichi getting so hot over this? How can they sound this good?

Sawamura quietly moans again, "C'mon, c'mon, I'm almost there."

Miyuki laughs on an exhale. "What, are you in a hurry to be somewhere?"

"I just don't wanna get caught, you ass."

"Oh, so we have time for you to appreciate my ass now?"

Youichi lets out a soft groan at Miyuki's lame attempt at humor, and thankfully the sound is covered up by a similar noise from Sawamura. "Ugh, you think you're so cool, don't you, Miyuki Kazuya? So wrong." For once, Youichi and Sawamura's thoughts are in perfect alignment, and Youichi wishes the three of them weren't in this situation so he could reach down and high five Sawamura.

"Stay quiet, would you? You're gonna wake him up."

Amazingly, Sawamura listens, but Miyuki's panting increases in volume as he starts to lose control. That's really, really hot for reasons Youchi doesn't want to examine too closely. "Mmm, ah Sawamura, hng…"

It sounds like they're both near the end, and worry suddenly pours into Youichi's system amid his arousal: the fact that he can hear them means that they could also potentially hear him if he finishes too loudly. Shit shit shit, Youchi's not usually quiet during his private time, but he'll have to make an effort this time or be labelled a pervert by his two closest friends. He bites down harder on his lip, tasting blood, and struggles to quiet his breathing as he picks up the pace.

He hears Miyuki come first with a sharp breath and a desperate moan that will be branded into his mind forever. It pushes Youichi over the edge: he stifles a groan at his own release and rides out the shocks listening to Sawamura coming undone as well. Sawamura sounds absolutely wrecked as he finishes and right now Youichi would give just about anything to see his face. He whines a little.

"Shh, shut up Sawamura, did you hear something?" Youichi goes still, fear flooding his veins. The silence stretches for what feels like hours, broken only by heavy breathing. He prays that Miyuki didn't hear anything incriminating from the top bunk.

Then, there's a sigh from Sawamura. "Whew. Guess he didn't wake up." Youichi hears him pull tissues from the box next to the bed and clean them up. "Just so you know, though, this is never happening again. He really would kill me if he caught us getting off in here."

Miyuki exhales. "Whatever. Move over, drama queen." Youichi hears the two of them shifting on Sawamura's bed. "He won't look too closely at us if he gets up in the middle of the night, and I'll leave before he's up tomorrow. Sound good?"

"Yeah, stay." The bed creaks as they get comfortable and then there's silence.

Youichi knows he should be very worried about several things at the moment, but a wave of exhaustion overtakes him, forcing his thoughts away. His eyelids droop, heavy as lead. He makes a note to wash his sheets tomorrow, since he'd pushed his boxers down earlier and he can't exactly get out of bed now to clean up.

Then, he drifts off to sleep, restless legs forgotten.

Kazuya toes open the door to the laundry room, basket in hand, and blinks in surprise when he notices that he's not alone.

Kazuya does laundry after Friday practices because no one else does and he doesn't want to fight for an open washer. Practice ends earlier on Fridays and his teammates are usually busy getting ready for whatever they do that isn't baseball. Homework, hanging out with non-baseball friends, going to events off campus, sleeping.

Why Kuramochi is here now is a mystery. Kazuya knows that he borrowed an old horror movie earlier in the week and had been planning to round up a group to watch it with.

Kazuya debates making a comment, but it would be weird to start a conversation with "You don't usually do laundry on Fridays." That would suggest that he keeps track of Kuramochi's laundry schedule, which, no.

Kazuya clears his throat and Kuramochi jumps like he's been caught with a hand in the cookie jar. "Miyuki! What are you doing here?" His eyes are wide and his grip on the bottle of detergent is tight enough to practically dent it.

Kazuya raises an eyebrow and lifts the basket. "Laundry."

Instead of yelling at him, Kuramochi flushes at the unspoken "duh" in Kazuya's tone. He's been doing that all day, blushing and stuttering guiltily, and it's making Kazuya very curious. He hadn't noticed anything during morning practice, but it was pretty obvious during class. Kuramochi kept shifting in his seat and fidgeting with his eraser, mumbling to himself. He'd snapped two pencils, two mechanical pencils. Whenever they'd made eye contact during lunch, Kuramochi had turned an adorable shade of red and immediately looked away. Practice after school wasn't any better. Kuramochi's hits had been almost comically erratic and he hadn't once tackled Sawamura to the ground in punishment.

All in all, it's suspicious.

"Someone seems a bit worked up today. Is something wrong?"

"What? Wrong? Nothing's wrong!" Kuramochi exclaims, gesturing widely to emphasize his statement. "Everything is just peachy, in fact!" He shoves his bedsheets the rest of the way into the washer, clearly in a hurry to look away.

"You're as red as a stop sign."

"It's, it's just the heat! My room's been feeling really hot, for some reason."

"Is that so?"

"Yeah! No need to be worried about me, haha, I mean not that you would worry or anything."

Kuramochi dashes out after starting up the washer and Kazuya loads his own clothes into another machine. He'll let Kuramochi stew for a little bit before confronting him again about whatever's bothering him. Ooh, maybe he could crash Room 5 under the pretense of visiting Sawamura, who's probably worried about Kuramochi too. The three of them could watch that horror movie together on Sawamura's bed (assuming the moron had changed his sheets) and hopefully fix things. Kuramochi would get to bitch about Kazuya and Sawamura cuddling together in front of him and laugh at Sawamura's terror during the film, which might bring the shortstop back to normal.

Yes, that sounds like a plan. Kazuya drops his now-empty basket on the bench and spies the cap to Kuramochi's detergent on the ground. He absently sets it next to the bottle on top of the washer, and that's when it actually clicks that Kuramochi is washing his bedsheets.

All at once, it falls into place: Kuramochi's guilt and overwhelming embarrassment, Sawamura and Kazuya's activities last night, a furtive laundry run today by Kuramochi, and the distinct feeling that Kazuya had heard something from Kuramochi's bunk when they'd finished getting off.

Kuramochi had overheard them, but he hadn't told them to stop. Hadn't wanted them to stop, maybe.

Kazuya's mouth turns up in a grin. He and Sawamura need to have a talk. One of their longstanding discussions may be ready for a resolution.

This is a nightmare. An actual nightmare, because this can't really be happening.

It's been three days since the incident, and in that time Youichi's been able to return to almost normal because it didn't look like Sawamura or Miyuki knew about his part in their personal time. Youichi's taken to doing extra swinging outside of practice because he can push his anxieties to the back of his mind during baseball, putting his full concentration into every swing, every step, every throw. His intensity isn't out of the ordinary on a team like Seidou, and the only one who probably notices his mood is the younger Kominato, who pats him comfortingly on the shoulder at the end of each day.

The point is, Youichi had been doing so well. However, Miyuki's quick "Oh, by the way, could you put off your extra swinging until later, Sawamura and I want to talk to you about something" at the end of practice has thrown Youichi back into a mix of emotions. There's a spike of pleasure at the memory of the other night (god that was hot), but there's also a shitload of guilt that comes along with it, because he definitely wasn't supposed to hear that. It was a private moment, something between two people who were dating. Also, there's the raw fear that he's about to lose two people he cares about because his dick had a mind of its own. He loves them (platonically, he'd assumed, but after the recent surprises he doesn't really have grounds to rule anything out) and whether or not he's attracted to them doesn't change the fact that they matter to him and that this conversation will hurt.

God, losing friends sucks, and he can't even avoid these two after the fallout because they're all first string players on the same goddamn team. Everyone's gonna know that something's different once Miyuki and Sawamura stop talking to him, and then the whole mess will be public. This can't be happening. Couldn't he just return to a save point and try again, like in games?

Oh, yep, it looks like he's a little bit in denial too.

Thanks to Sawamura and Miyuki's presence, Youichi takes the fastest bath of his life before escaping to his room, where Sawamura and Miyuki probably want to have that talk with him. Youichi opens his textbook, hoping to stumble through some math homework before the inevitable crash-and-burn, but the two of them enter a few minutes later with still-wet hair, chuckling together at something.

Youichi swallows and stands up from his desk, feeling like he's walking to the gallows. Are they going to make fun of him? Or just be creeped out? Youichi can't decide which would be worse. Miyuki closes the door behind them and Youichi gulps at the finality of the sound. The panic that he's poorly managed to reign in comes loose and suddenly it's very hard to form a sentence, let alone come up with a non-perverted reason why he might have been awake that night but not said anything.

"So we've been thinking about something for a while," Miyuki starts, hand slipping comfortably around Sawamura's waist.

"O-oh?" Real eloquent, Youichi, nice going.

"Neither of us were really sure how to bring it up, because we've never had experience with anything like this before. When we got together, it wasn't exactly the shoujo moment that Sawamura expected," he continues, nodding at his boyfriend.

There's a pause where Youichi is clearly supposed to respond. "Okay?" He hadn't really been expecting them to have experience rejecting someone who'd intruded on their sex life.

Miyuki takes a deep breath. "We think about you differently than the rest of the team; you're our teammate and friend, but there's also something else." Here it is, here's the part where they tell him to stay the hell away from them because he's a pervert. "Long story short, Sawamura and I like you and we want you to join us. Our relationship, that is."

"It's okay, I understand that you don't want to talk to me," Youichi says. There's a beat of silence, and then: "Wait, what?"

Kazuya had noticed Kuramochi's anxiety when they entered the room, but figured it was related to a bad test score or something. Normally he'd procrastinate on his math homework for at least another hour.

Now, though, it's apparent that Kuramochi hadn't been worried about school.

Kazuya's offer still hangs in the air, but Kuramochi's outburst and bewildered expression don't serve as a clear answer. Did they spring this on him too quickly? Kazuya had been all for slowly getting closer to him, bringing him along on outings and date-like activities, just the three of them, but Sawamura didn't want Kuramochi to be left out any longer. "We both like him," Sawamura had said, "and if you're right about the bedsheets thing, then Mochi wants us too. Why shouldn't we go for it?" Kazuya hadn't been too difficult to persuade.

"W-what are you talking about?" Kuramochi finally answers, face scarlet.

"Please go out with us, Mochi-senpai!" Sawamura demands, despite their agreement that Kazuya would be doing the talking so as to keep the conversation at a reasonable volume.

"Go out with you? But… why? Why me? I'm not, you're, you're already dating each other."

Kazuya holds up a hand. "Let's start over. Kuramochi, why did you think we wanted to talk?" Kuramochi's response before hadn't matched what Kazuya was expecting.

Kuramochi turns even redder. "No reason."

He recalls Kuramochi's apprehension and suddenly understands. Kuramochi had correctly guessed the catalyst for the meeting – Sawamura and Kazuya finding out that he'd been awake – but he'd expected this conversation to go in a very different direction than they intended. Kazuya doesn't know how to seriously address the fact that Kuramochi thought he was getting rebuffed, so he falls back on teasing: "You thought we were here to scold you, huh? Is being punished something you'd like too? Like you enjoyed listening to us have sex?"

"I didn't!" Kuramochi blusters. "There was no eavesdropping going on, nuh-uh, I didn't even know you two were that serious! I slept soundly through Thursday night, no interruptions at all!"

Kazuya's stomach flips pleasantly at the incriminating lie. No one had mentioned anything about a specific night.

"Whoa, it sounds like you were right, Miyuki."

"Of course I was," he replies, flashing a grin at Sawamura.

Kuramochi huffs. "You most certainly were not right!" Kazuya and Sawamura just stare at him. "Okay, I'm still not saying you're right, but what makes you think that?"

"Your suspiciously timed laundry run. That was your first chance to do it after what happened Thursday evening."

"What? Are you serious? That's it?"

"The fact that you were embarrassed all day kinda gave it away too."

"Most people wash their sheets regularly! Geez, Miyuki, what kind of pervert looks at a guy washing his sheets and automatically assumes it's because he's been, you know, having some private time?!"

"I don't know, Kuramochi, what kind of pervert gets off on his two friends giving each other hand jobs in the bed below him?"

"Have you two even heard yourselves?" Kuramochi blurts out, indignant, and then immediately backpedals. "Fuck, I didn't mean that, forget I said that!"

Kazuya's smile stretches. "What was that, Kuramochi?"

Sawamura elbows him. "Stop teasing him for a sec, Miyuki Kazuya, he hasn't given us a straight answer yet."

"Pretty sure we're not hoping for a straight answer," Kazuya snickers, but he nods at Sawamura to take a turn at talking to Kuramochi.

Sawamura carefully takes Kuramochi's hand. "Mochi-senpai, we really like you and we want to do dating things with you, but if you don't want that, we'll back off."

"I…" Kuramochi looks lost, but he doesn't pull away from Sawamura. "I don't know. I'm not sure if what I feel for you is like that, but I'm not sure that it's not like that either, you know? You're my friends. It's confusing."

Sawamura beams. "It's not an all-or-nothing deal, Senpai! Whether you decide you want to make out with us or not, you're still special to us."

He blushes again, and because Kuramochi's attention is still focused on Sawamura, Kazuya subtly flips open his phone to snap a picture or five. "So we don't have to do it all right away, right? Things like sex, I mean? I'm not sure that I'm…"

Kazuya stashes his phone. "We'll move at whatever pace you're comfortable with."

"Yeah, and Miyuki won't even tease you about being really slow at something!"

"Oi, who said I'd be really slow?" Kuramochi demands, his embarrassment vanishing as he pulls Sawamura into a headlock.


"Your boyfriend just said we could go at whatever pace I want! So it looks like you're the one who thinks I'm gonna be 'really slow', huh?"

"Nooooo, Mochi! I don't think that, you don't have to use your wrestling moves!"

"Hyahaha, if you thought you'd get out of punishment because I might be going on dates with you, you're the slow one!"

"Miyuki, help!"

Kazuya laughs. If Kuramochi's back to wrestling Sawamura, then he's comfortable around them again, which is a start. "No way. So, Kuramochi, are you free this Friday?"

Kuramochi doesn't look up as he pulls Sawamura into another wrestling hold, clearly more painful if the distressed noises from Sawamura are any indication. "What'd you have in mind?"

"The cheap theatre's got a horror movie playing at 10pm."

"Oh no," Sawamura wails. "Not another horror movie!"

"Oh yes," Kuramochi replies with mischievous delight. "You can sit right in the middle, Sawamoron. Your boyfriends will make sure that you don't sneak off anywhere to escape bonding time."

"'Boyfriends', huh?" Kazuya murmurs with a hint of a smile. The two idiots continue their struggle, seemingly unaware of the fact that Kuramochi has unconsciously agreed to join Kazuya and Sawamura in a new kind of bond.

Hit me up on my tumblr (meridiangrimm) if you want to talk about gay baseball players.