While ITW6 is still in progress amidst of chaos that is Jo's life, we are aware that ITW7 may not be out by end of May as we projected. But we also don't want to be empty handed at Fanime either. So, going off from a survey from looooong ago about what kind of side story would interest people from FB, a portion said they would be interested in Katsuya's backstory. Although we planned quite a few of them, they are in the ITW timeframe and we couldn't post them until more of the story's revealed. Pre-ITW time frame of Katsuya in NY was an interesting discovery we've had. The character David had good feedbacks (maybe because he's not an asshole and he genuinely liked Katsuya... not in the unreciprocated way as seen in ITW). Developing a story pre-ITW avoids any kind of spoiler, which is a plus. However, we are still working this character and can only hope David is up to par of carrying a story with Katsuya.
And Jo promised that David will be a very good looking. ^_-
So, this is part 1 of 2 of this unnamed story now that we are developing as an illustrated short story (it may be up to 20-25 pages) along with ITW liner notes and working sketches, etc. We'd like to put this out as a companion with ITW vol. 1 manga DMI will be releasing then. DavidXKatsuya pairing's also a focus for us for Summer Comiket, We would like for you to read this (and NY Minute if you haven't already -- link HERE ). We want to gauge general interest in this pairing and the storyline since this is very different from ITW. Katsuya's also younger and not as jaded. Not quite a queen yet. More of a princess.
You can send us comments via the LJ or email if you don't want to leave it here. At this point, we just want to collect information from our readers on this storyline. At the least, we want to fix characterizations if Krause or Katsuya read very irritating. The 'squishy romance', as one of my friends called it - I hope wasn't too much either. Well, I didn't think so. I've seen more make-out at a grocery store.
He hadn’t expected the call from the desk sergeant which interrupted his seminar, pulling him from the class.
“Can it wait? I have only one more hour – “
“Afraid not, Doc,” the sergeant said, his thick city accent causing Katsuya to squint involuntarily as he tried to decipher his words. “Krause wants you to meet him at the scene.”
“Dunno. Just know it’s a messy suicide. He needs you down there by two."
A look at his watch told Katsuya he had half an hour to get wherever he needed to be. “Give me the address.”
“’sokay. Already sent a car to get you. Just wait outside. He should be here any minute now.”
Katsuya thanked him and hung up before annoyance could be heard in his voice. He shoved the phone into his pocket and returned to the classroom. He collected his briefcase as he made his apologies, adding a promise to the lecturer to attend the next class and left.
The twenty year-old, garrulous patrolman who picked him up in a marked sedan was only months out of the academy. Katsuya sat in the passenger seat quietly as the young man spoke rapidly about his decision to become a cop. Katsuya nodded occasionally, hearing very little.
“Here we are,” the cop said, as they turned into an apartment complex. Katsuya pulled himself up straighter in the seat. The normally quiet, gated complex was filled with curious onlookers penned behind a police line. Several forensics trucks, a coroner’s wagon and four cruisers, their lights still whirling, were parked in front of a building that had “2211” painted on the side. He saw Krause’s sedan double parked by the fire hydrant.
“It was good talking to you, sir,” the patrolman said, pulling up to the entrance.
Katsuya gave him a smile and told him to have a nice day as he stepped out. He watched the patrol car do a wide three-point turn and leave.
“Detective Krause called me,” Katsuya said to the cop posted at the single point of entry. Yellow police tape wound around the building and ended in a three foot gap at the curb. He dug into his pocket for his identification and showed it to the cop who looked bored.
“He said you were coming,” the cop said and spoke into the mike clipped to the epaulet on his shoulder, asking for Krause to come out. “Said to wait for him here. There ain’t no need for you to go in.”
Confused, Katsuya only nodded and walked a few steps away from the cop, so there wouldn’t be any chance of his having to engage in any conversation with the man. He was annoyed. He didn’t want to be here.
Ten minutes passed before Krause emerged from the building. Katsuya grimaced, even as Krause gave him a brilliant smile.
“What do you need me here for?” Katsuya answered Krause’s greeting briskly. “I was in an important seminar that I waited months to get into.”
He followed Krause to his sedan and out of earshot of the other cops.
“Isn’t it your birthday?” Krause asked, as he opened his trunk. He leaned against the bumper, using the toe of his left shoe to step on the heel of his right. Katsuya watched him, confused.
“It doesn’t matter,” Katsuya said. “It’s just another day.”
Krause’s smile remained as he slipped off the shoes and bagged them in thick plastic.
“I change my shoes before going into crime scenes. Once blood gets into the seams, it’s impossible to get rid of,” Krause explained. “Even if just a drop of blood soaks in, the shoe is ruined, and you could walk into a slaughterhouse at any of the calls.”
Krause stepped into another pair of dress shoes on the ground by the trunk, and straightened.
“It’s your birthday,” Krause said again, closing the trunk and gesturing for Katsuya to get into the car.
“You are just going to leave this case -- ?”
“It’s a suicide,” Krause said and shrugged. “No one to look for. What’s the point of being the senior of the section if I have to hold everyone’s penises so they can pee? I’ve already assigned two guys to this.”
Katsuya didn’t want to go with Krause. He suddenly felt dumb, being pulled into a crime scene so he could be whisked away for an impromptu birthday date. He looked around him again, only getting into Krause’s car because he didn’t want to argue at the crime scene.
“It’s selfish of you to assume that you know what I want to do today,” Katsuya said, as soon as Krause pulled the car into traffic. “You should have asked.”
“And you would have gone out of your way to make sure I couldn’t find you. What is it about your birthday and certain holidays that makes you afraid of being with people?”
Krause took his right hand from the steering wheel and placed it gingerly over Katsuya’s left hand.
“Those days don’t mean the same to me as they do to most people.”
Krause curled his fingers, holding Katsuya’s hand loosely in his.
“It means the world to me that you exist,” Krause said, his eyes still fixed forward. “And now you are here with me.”
Katsuya almost smiled. “Pretty good,” he finally said. His sour mood was temporarily forgotten. “I must say, Americans certainly know how to talk about these things casually and unflinchingly. I can’t get used to it.”
Krause laughed. “I know what lines work,” he said. “And don’t worry about the seminar. That old guy gives those lectures to the Feds all the time in Quantico. I’ll ask the chief to send you down there next month.”
“He doesn’t like you.”
“But he likes you,” Krause said. “I wouldn’t put it past him to accompany you to the seminar and have the clerk ‘accidentally’ book you two into the same hotel room.”
“Anyway,” Katsuya said, “your meaning well doesn’t excuse the fact that you’ve strong-armed me into spending the day with you.”
“I’m not sure how to feel,” Krause said. “This has never happened before.”
“When I was in a relationship before, it was an expected duty, if you will. Even if I was called out on a job on a birthday, anniversary or holiday, the fault was still mine. I sort of understood it. Even if I was on the receiving end of anger I didn’t deserve.”
“I’m not sure if you are trying to say I am or am not high maintenance, emotionally.”
“I don’t know either,” Krause said. He turned to give Katsuya a smile. “It’s nice not to be pressed for unreasonable expectations in a relationship. By the same token, I would like to spoil you. Would you please let me?”
“You can spoil me any time,” Katsuya said. “It doesn’t have to be an occasion.”
They were quiet then. Krause kept a grip on Katsuya’s hand. Neither spoke until they neared Krause’s condo.
“Sorry,” Krause said as he eased his car into his parking slot. “I didn’t mean to hijack you. It means a lot to me to spend today with you.”
“You don’t need to apologize,” Katsuya said. “I’m a little annoyed, but I’m not angry.”
“Then you’ll let me spoil you?”
Katsuya hooked an arm around Krause’s neck and brought him close for a kiss.
“You’re supposed to,” Katsuya said. “Every single day.”
Another kiss, featherlike, with lips glancing over one another. A sudden awareness of where they were made Katsuya lean back and break the built up tension with an uncomfortable cough.
“We shouldn’t...here.... ”
Krause smiled and gave Katsuya a kiss on the cheek.
“Right, right...you don’t like PDA,” he said. “I hope you’re hungry. I have a nice big juicy steak with your name on it.”
Katsuya tilted his head to the side. “You do have strange euphemisms.”
Krause laughed. He couldn’t help but snatch another quick kiss from Katsuya. “You may have that, too, after I cook for you,” Krause said. “As much as you like.”
Katsuya shed his jacket and left it draped over an armchair in the living room. He took small, careful sips of tea from a ceramic cup that said, “Homicide Dept: our day begins when yours ends”, speckled with red droplets. He sat at the kitchen table and watched Krause dress two sirloins that he’d cooked in an iron pan on the stove top.
It was interesting watching Krause work. The concentration he invested in arranging the food on the plates was that of an artist about to complete a masterpiece. His furrowed brows and precise motions had been learned from the uncle who had raised him. Krause had told him the man had been an executive chef.
“My cooking’s more legendary than my other skills,” Krause told him with a trace of sadness. “If only if I could close cases as well as I cook.”
Katsuya took more sips of tea, trying to stifle the hunger that had been triggered by the savory scent of his birthday meal. He tried not to appear too eager when he was finally served the steak with a glass of red wine. He ignored the salad that came in the ornate glass bowl and cut into the steak.
“This is wonderful,” he said, nodding with approval after the first bite.
Krause beamed. “I would have baked you a cake but....”
“I would rather have meat,” Katsuya said. “Make me a steak cake.”
Krause rose from his seat just enough to lean in and give Katsuya a kiss.
“Anything you want. Happy Birthday,” he said. “Whether you like it or not.”
Katsuya smiled -- a genuine, happy smile. Krause returned it with another kiss.
“Thank you,” Katsuya said, gesturing for Krause to start on his own plate. “I’m glad you interrupted my day. You’re right; I think I might have been angry with you if you had ignored my birthday.”
Krause settled back down into his seat and fanned the linen napkin over his lap. “I’m a trained detective.”
“Your partner told me something interesting about you a few days ago,” Katsuya said, after taking a sip of the Merlot.
“Couldn’t image what,” Krause said and cut off a piece of his steak. “He does have a lot of dirt on me.”
Krause smiled, still chewing. “He knew me back when I was still doing patrol.”
“He told me you used to be a Dominant, in the BDSM scene.”
Krause’s face did not change expression. He ate another cube of steak. “It wasn’t a lifestyle,” Krause said and took a drink from his wineglass to wash down the steak. “I was with someone who was into it and I obliged.”
“A person who asked you to.... “ Katsuya said, pausing to look for words.
“Yes,” Krause said. “Did it for about a year. I did it to make her happy.”
“It was a woman?”
“I drive on both sides of the street,” Krause said with a smile. “Anyway, I was kind of glad when I didn’t have to do that anymore. As much as I understand the psychology of pain that’s part of it, I wasn’t entirely comfortable. I felt like a misogynist afterwards, when I was out of the moment. ”
Katsuya pulled himself up straighter in his seat, his food temporarily forgotten. “Why?”
“It’s a very intense experience,” Krause said. “It’s a superficial understanding of BDSM that the play’s deeply rooted in trust and that the concept of inflicted pain is subjective. It’s a lot more than that. You have this human being, who’s been stripped bare of their sense of self, sense of identity and ego -- everything. Now you are responsible for protecting an absolutely defenseless being and for making them feel -- making them what they are, for that brief time. I was in charge in the purely physical sense. She was in charge of everything else. I suppose I would have been more into it and gotten more out of the experience if that had been my lifestyle. I couldn’t deny that there were some very powerful sexual connections involved that were like owning something very pure, and the love or lust in those few moments felt unconditional. However, it’s a lot of work to arrive at that point. Sometimes it felt like trying to wring an erection out of an impotent man. Does that make sense? ”
“I loved her and did what made her happy,” Krause said. “So...that was the only reason I was in the scene. It’s not that dirty a secret. I’ve done worse.”
“Is that why you’re no longer with her?”
Krause tilted his head to the side and thought for a moment. “Part of it, I suppose. I didn’t want a slave; I wanted a girlfriend.”
There were a few moments of silence. Krause continued to carve small bites from his steak and eat, while Katsuya sipped his wine.
“Were you good at it?”
“Of course I was. Fucking with people’s minds is one of my natural talents. I have the highest confession rate in the department for a reason.”
Although Krause had said it with a smile, Katsuya didn’t doubt that it was true. Many supervisors didn’t like Krause on a personal level, but they couldn’t deny that he was one of the best. He was one of the commissioner’s favorites.
“For my birthday...,” Katsuya asked, “if I asked you to take me to a place where I could experience that with you, would you?”
Krause placed his knife and fork down on the plate. There was a frown on his face. “Would you settle for me getting into my uniform, talking dirty and giving you a light spanking instead?”
“I’m certain it’s not the same.”
“Have you always had an interest in this?”
“Purely as a student of psychology. I’m intrigued by the change of pain into pleasure.”
“It’s not always there,” Krause said. “The concept of pleasure derives from the fact that you are able to completely be nothing while hoping for someone to give you everything. Unless you’ve always had this kind of inclination and are willing to explore it, the pain can easily translate into humiliation. That can damage you. It can damage us.”
“I believe I can endure it,” Katsuya said. “I want to know what it’s like to receive pain from someone that loves me.”
“That sounds more perverse than what the game really is,” Krause said. “I am really uncertain if you can will yourself to be nothing.”
“You are a very strong, proud man,” Krause said, his voice dropping, softening, “but there’s something so damn fragile about you inside that makes people want to protect you. Someone like me."
“You think I would break if someone hurt me?”
“I don’t know,” Krause said. He rose slightly so he could lean over and kiss Katsuya on the mouth. “I really don’t want to find out.”
“I’m more resilient than you think, David,” Katsuya said. “Do you know why I don’t think a day like my birthday is special?”
Krause sat back down.
“I don’t have an anchor, like most people do.”
Krause’s eyebrows knitted together, in puzzlement.
“People are tethered to each other by a need to have an identity, an ego. I am my father’s son, my brother’s brother, my wife’s husband, my children’s father, a friend to my friends. We network with other humans in this way to be what we are. For most of us, our most fundamental identity comes from our parents – as our very first introduction to the known world. I don’t have that.”
Krause was quiet as he waited for Katsuya to continue.
“I’ve never known my parents, although I wasn’t an orphan in the traditional sense.”
“Meaning you knew your parents, but your parents didn’t know you.”
“I never knew my mother. Only hours after I was born, I was taken by my paternal grandfather. I’m not even sure my father was present when I was born. It was made clear to me from the day I could understand it, that I exist because of the guilt two people felt after I was conceived.”
“I mean no disrespect to your family, but it’s pretty shitty to tell a kid he had absentee parents because he was an accident.”
Katsuya shrugged. “Even if he had said nothing, I would have known eventually. It would have been obvious to me that other children had parents and I didn’t. Having a dysfunctional family is less acceptable where I come from than it is here.”
“So a day like a birthday, which demands a temporary focus on the day you were ejected from a womb however many years ago, is meaningless to you because of how you came to be.”
Katsuya smiled. “It just doesn’t seem that special anymore,” he said. “You are very good at psychoanalysis, Detective. Have you hidden a formal education that I’m not aware of?”
“Nope,” Krause said and picked up his knife and fork again. He sawed a corner of his steak off. “Just many years of dealing with both extremes of good and bad people. Eventually, you figure out that humans aren’t wired that differently. People who are kind and generous have very similar motivations to those who are every degree of asshole. But, I still think a day like today is important. The point is moot on why you exist, you simply do. That’s all I care about. That’s all you should care about.”
Katsuya’s smile remained as he watched Krause chew his steak.
“And so...am I over-thinking it that you want to experience this so-called psychology of pain, just to feel something...different?”
Katsuya swallowed. “You are not wrong, but in this case, it really is curiosity above all else.”
“You are not emotionally compensating?”
Katsuya laughed. “If I wanted to compensate,” he said, “I would have slept with half of the city by now.”