Okay, I started this right after I posted the last one. Seriously, within two minutes of posting… BAM. This one was started.
Don’t own or make anything
After that last punch, I was angrier than a bull in a circus. It wasn’t so much that I couldn’t take getting hit, it was just that I was getting beaten by the new guy (no offense intended to Matt). I knew I couldn’t stand up to that fighting style for very long either. I concentrated all of my power into the final move, and I sent a huge chunk of earth catapulting in Matt’s direction.
The only thing I could bring myself to think was, “Oh shit!” I knew I overdid it and the attack was approaching so fast that I couldn’t do anything about it at this point. Even if I could’ve, I was too exhausted to clear that distance in a minute or two let alone a few seconds. My blood went cold when I heard a smash, but it was only the chunk breaking up. In the clearing debris, I saw a boulder fly straight into Matt and launch him a couple of feet then bouncing off of him like a cowboy on a rodeo bull. Forgetting my exhaustion, I sprinted to his side and the first thing I saw was the blood running down his jaw. He had a couple of small cuts and one big gash on the side of his forehead near the temple. My knees hit the ground and the others crowded around him like a dead squirrel. They were buzzing like angry bees over him, but he wasn’t moving. I prepared to do some amateur “CPR”, but Matt chose that moment to come spluttering back to life.
“Ay! Clay, you broke him, dude!” Rai screamed, obviously not helping the situation. Kimiko came around to his other side and stroked his hand while he attempted to sit up.
“That was most impressive, my friend,” Omi said, putting a hand on his shoulder. He stepped back when I put my arm under his neck.
“Shh shh. Easy now,” I cooed, helping him into a sitting position, and as ironic as it may seem I told him, “You wouldn’t want to hurt yourself now.” I decided to ignore Rai’s snort with Matt in this condition.
A shadow appeared over my head, and I looked up to see Master Fung looking down at us. “That was a very good match, Matthew. I too am impressed with your abilities. I hope that when you recover we can continue your training”, before his final statement he raised an eyebrow at me, “without some of the unnecessary injury.” I felt a pang of guilt at that last part. Boy Clay, you really over-did it this time.
“Clay? Would you be so kind as to carry Matthew to his quarters? He should be fine aside from some bruising and soreness for the next week or so.” With that, Master Fung turned around and returned to the temple in his usual mysterious way.
While I was watching Master Fung leave, I felt a hand clutch the neck of my robe. My head snapped back and I saw Matt motioning me to come closer. His warm breath on my ear sent shivers down my spine. He whispered, “That… was cheap.” before collapsing into my chest with a small smile. I couldn’t help but laugh at his humor, especially considering his situation.
“Clay, I’ll kill you if you pull something like that again on him”, Kimiko hissed, glaring. It brought me back to the realization, they must be going out or something. Wow, that was just the cherry on top of an exceptionally bad day. I felt lower than a rattlesnake’s belly button. Without responding, I picked Matt up and carried him over to the temple, leaving the others to chatter behind me.
He was pretty heavy considering his size. I guess it was all the muscle packed into the small frame. As I walked through the garden alone with Matt in my arms, I couldn’t help but imagine this situation again with Matt still conscious. What I wouldn’t give for that… but I guess it wouldn’t amount to anything if it really did happen. Kim’s got her claws in him already. Deep. Again, my imagination formed a picture, but this time it was of Kimiko as a lion with pig-tails pouncing on a very cute, Asian gazelle which I assumed was Matt. I chuckled at the image and I heard a soft groan from around my elbow.
Oops, I guess my laughing woke him up. Matt’s eyes opened groggily and I stopped at a garden bench. “You okay?” I asked, sitting him up on the bench. Jesus, that was a stupid question. He was sitting there on a garden bench with ripped, bloodied robes with an equally bloody face.
“Just peachy”, was his reply, wincing a bit when stretched the broken skin on his left cheek. When I looked at it, it was a very shallow cut, so it wouldn’t leave that big of a scar. Pulling himself up, he attempted to walk towards the temple. It wasn’t long before he nearly collapsed, but I caught him and scooped him up into the cradling position once again.
“Easy now,” I murmured, using the same voice I used when he first woke up. “I think I’ll be doing the walkin’ for now. Just ’till you can get around yourself.” I could tell he would’ve objected to the involuntary ride if it was within his power. “Aww, c’mon Matt. It’s just ’till I get you to the temple.” He just rolled his eyes and turned away from me. Apparently, it wasn’t far enough because I saw a small smile creep onto his lips and a blush spread to his neck and ear. I guess today’s not such a bad day after all.
When we got back to his room, I brought in a towel and a bowl of warm water. Although he objected to it at first, I sponged off most of the dried blood from his face and neck. After that, I handed him the towel while I went to fetch a couple of bandages and antiseptics. I found some in an ancient first-aid kit and I ran back to the room. As I parted the curtain to Matt’s room (more of a stall really), he’d cast off his robe top and was wiping the blood off from his back and shoulder blades. My heart sped up at the sight of his bare torso. My groin stirred his exposure and I debated on whether or not to just leave the bandages or continue forward. When I recalled the shower incident, I guess it didn’t really matter as much as before so I shrugged to myself and continued in.
“I got them bandages, Matt.” I called while I stepped towards him. He turned around and I could see that his smaller cuts were barely visible. My greetings were returned with a wan smile. I broke out the bandages and alcohol and began to prepare to clean Matt up. I dabbed the alcohol with the towel and raised it up to Matt’s temple. “This may hurt”, I mumbled. When I pressed it on his cut, I heard a yelp and Matt squirmed under the rag. It was almost more than I could take to see him in such discomfort, but the pain soon subsided and he regained his composure. I pressed a bandage across the cut and it was almost impossible to tell how bad the gash had been moments earlier. Once I was satisfied with my work, I grinned and looked Matt in the eyes. He returned my smile with a flash of his dazzling pearly-whites.
The urge to pull him into a long tight hug nearly overtook me, but then I thought, “Kim’ll give him one later.” The thought saddened me to the point where I could even imagine my hat drooping. I could’ve sworn that it was for a moment but I realized it was just tipping forward.
“What’s wrong?”, Matt asked me. He was bending so that he could look up from under the brim of my hat with those puppy dog eyes of his. I raised my hat so that he could look at me comfortably. “If it’s about the sparring, then don’t beat yourself up about it. It wasn’t your fault I was too slow or too stupid to dodge the attack”, he sighed forlornly.
“How could you even think that?” I asked a little too passionately. “You were awesome! I could barely even keep up with you.” He cheered up at that part. “Honestly, I think that was the only way I could’ve won.” I admitted, giving him a playful punch. My knuckles grazed against his cheek and he pushed it off. After he returned mine, I noticed his bandage was slightly wrinkled. I reached up to smooth it out and Matt’s eyes followed my hands.
My tongue parted my lips slightly in concentration, and he made small giggle before averting his eyes. He sure did have a cute laugh. “What?” I asked with a smile. “D’you find something funny?” The playful questioning renewed his laughter. His laugh was loud and sincere and it was the kind of sound that did the heart good.
“Nothing. Absolutely nothing at all”, came his answer between giggles. When he settled down, I let my eyes travel down to his and found them staring at me dreamily. My hands stopped working and slid slowly down his cheeks onto his shoulders. I would’ve been squirming now if I could move at all. His eyes seemed glazed over and I could practically see my reflection in them. It was then that I decided to throw away my inhibitions and follow my heart to see where it led me. It couldn’t hurt to like him. Or could it?
He slowly leaned into my touch and between my arms. From his shoulders, I could feel his arms come up and I began leaning further in too. The distance continued to wane and when they came within inches of one another, I closed my eyes. I shivered in anticipation. It was like waiting for the stroke of midnight on December 31st. A second later, I felt his body press into mine, but only momentarily before becoming a trite embrace; much like one I would get from Omi or Kimiko.
“Thank you, Clay”, was all I got before he slipped his arms from my shoulders and moved away. I swear I could’ve burst into tears right then and there, but it wasn’t long before Matt turned at me with a questioning look. He was already fully clothed and I hurried up and out of his room after grumbling a quick, “You’re welcome.”
Aww, so sad for Clayyy. Oh well. Well, review if you’d like. I’m going to continue regardless if I feel like it and if I can find the time.