Yuuri looks up from where he’s sorting out his laundry, a sock in one hand and a shirt in another. He puts the sock to one side and begins folding the shirt, Victor’s shirt that he keeps forgetting to give back. “Oh, that? I got that keyboard a long time ago—before I went to Detroit, even.”
Victor tilts his head from where he sits on the bed, feet stretched out before him. Blinks and looks at Yuuri. “Do you still play?”
“Play for me?”
Smiling, Yuuri sets aside one of Victor’s scarves and stands. “Any requests?”
“Your song,” the Russian says decisively after a heartbeat of thinking. “Yuri on Ice.”
“Hmm. I never learned it,” Japan’s top figure skater admits. He shakes his head and pulls out the keyboard from where it sits propped against his closet. “But I can try.”
“You can do that?” Victor asks. The words, You’re that good at playing? go unsaid.
Yuuri shrugs, plugs the keyboard into the wall and turns the machine on. “Sure,” he answers, fingers running over scales like water pouring from a fountain. The sound is crisp and clear, and Victor finds himself pleasantly surprised. He wonders why.
“I’ve skated to this song so many times it’s practically engraved in my head,” the brunet continues, moving into arpeggios and rhythmic exercises. The keyboard moves slightly as Yuuri presses into the keys, the device pushing into the yielding mattress. “Just give me a second to warm up.”
As Yuuri’s fingers drift over the keys, Victor swings his feet back and forth. “How did you start playing?”
Yuuri’s fingers don’t stop, unheeding of or perhaps disregarding the conversation. Yuuri turns to look at the older man and hums. “I saw a video of someone playing the piano and decided to learn.”
“Did you take lessons?”
“For a time, yes.”
“How old were you when you started?”
Yuuri huffs a laugh from his nose and tests out various chords. “Is this an interrogation now?”
“Well, I never knew you could play. Is it so wrong to want to learn more about your boyfriend?”
“Mm.” Yuuri pauses, looking down at his hands. “I started when I was relatively young. Six, I think?”
“That is young.”
“Well, I stopped being so serious about it when I began taking ballet lessons. And then skating took up most of my time after that.”
“But you still play?”
“I still play.”
Yuuri begins then, starting with the sixteenth note triplets, and Victor closes his mouth and just listens. It’s lovely—reminds him of when he first listened to it, half asleep and with Yuuri excitedly leaning over his lap. Reminds him of his former student, of his lover before they became lovers.
“You’re very good at this.”
Closing his eyes and letting himself visualize the music inside his head, Yuuri leans back and feels his lips quirk into a half-smile. “I’m not the type to let a skill atrophy without practice.”
“That’s not you, no,” Victor agrees.
And they both listen, then, to the music pouring out of the cheap keyboard roused from its sleep. He times his breathing to the swelling of the melody, to the rise and fall of the notes, to the cadence of the moment. Victor leans against Yuuri’s shoulder and Yuuri leans back, the two of them content to relive their memories through the passage of sound.
It’s a peaceful moment filled with peaceful feelings. Victor tells himself to ask Yuuri to play more music for him from now on.
Man sometimes I just think about how mad it is that Buffy delivers one of the most painful, dramatic episodes/reveals in song form. Like wtf Joss get it together. WHY IS THIS EPISODE SO GOOD. IT HAS NO RIGHT.
1. if you turn the volume all the way up, and listen to your favorite song with your eyes closed, you will feel less alone.
2. when you fall in love with being alone you will learn a lot about who you are; then, when you are surrounded by people, you won’t feel so afraid, you won’t feel so out of place. because when you are sure of yourself you don’t feel so obliged to fit, in some place.
3. you will meet people who have never heard your favorite song. and you may not fully understand, but somehow you will trust them with enough of your heart to recommend it to them. those who matter will listen. and they will surprise you.
4. in all your years on this earth, you have learned more than you think. you are more capable than you realize.
5. you don’t know everything. you are not the best, at anything, and you are never the only one. you are not the only one looking for a place to exist honestly - you are not the only one willing to create a place, to exist honestly. people will surprise you.
6. people love you - people will love you. even when you don’t want them to. even when you are ready to give up, even when you are at your lowest point and everyone you love doesn’t have the words you need to hear - they still love you. they will always love you, in whatever way they know how. and it will be enough.
7. God exists. there are shadows you will try to hide behind, and excuses you will try to build - but God exists in the realest way imaginable.
8. these things, this growing, takes time. do not rush it. do not expect to be something, or someone, you’re not - just because someone says you should be. take time to breathe. don’t worry so much about who you’re becoming, rather, focus on what you’re doing. make art. love others. write poems about your love for the moon; learn to love the sun. don’t cling so tightly to the identity that has been handed to you. don’t be so afraid to do what the ache in your chest is telling you to do; do not be so afraid to reach for something, to act on something, bigger than yourself. and you will find, with time, that you’ve become exactly who you need to be.
9. eventually everything will fall into place. it is hard to believe now, that this heartbreak is preparing you for love. it is difficult to grasp, that this displacement - being thrown into such harsh uncertainty - will light your path home. but, listen: you are not a mistake. you are not an accident. you are living, with purpose, and everything surrounding you - every person connected to you, every moment that touches you - is going to make sense one day. i promise, it will all make sense one day. just wait.
I would just like to express once again how much I appreciate Bastille as human beings and as a band. Their talent and hard work put into their music alongside their humble personalities just combine together perfectly to make a lovable band that not only myself adores, but the millions of other people around the world and I can not express my love for them enough. They deserve every award they are nominated for, and even if they don’t win it they are still considered to be the best band to me and that’s all that matters.