Pairing: Takuto Maruki x Zenkichi Hasegawa (HaseMaru | Persona 5)
Summary: Zenkichi Hasegawa's first impressions on Takuto Maruki brought comfort, rather than coming across as a shady detective.
The man before him bore a set of rimless glasses with a square narrow frame, behind them being dark grey irises that glimmered a glint of teal. They lingered on Takuto, blinking ever so often to break the silent stare.
"Do you need something...?" Takuto's eyebrows furrowed, hair falling in front of his own brown eyes. Although his words were stern and wary, his voice gave away his concern, curiosity. He wondered the many reasons the Inspector had been following the group, however, there was another, more pressing thought. 'Why do your eyes fall back to me, when you have done nothing but sought out the teenager that piqued the law's interest once more?' The question merely brought a sigh to Takuto's mind.
“…your companion," Zenkichi—the name almost slipped past his mind—had answered the teenagers' panicked inquiries. Takuto's gaze cleared and his ears returned to the conversation, departing from his mind. Again, Zenkichi looked back at Takuto, and this time, the full intensity of his gaze was on him. “Sorry, didn’t catch your name.”
Takuto's hands hovered for a long moment, freezing in place over his chest. A deafening silence blanketed his mind. No trains of thoughts rumbling through his nerves, nor any questions that tugged his curiosity in all possible directions. Though gently, a memory flourished, blooming with pristine white petals that gave ease to his body. His voice flowed, words strung in a gentle, awkward greeting. "Takuto Maruki is my name."
"Developing man of never-ending joy," Zenkichi murmured, "If I'm not spewing out random words to rid of this awkwardness, of course."
Once more, the silence returned. The words flowed as if it were a gentle stream, despite the appearance of the Inspector. It was quiet enough that he could hear his heart thumping beside his ears. To string words like that gave him a faint sense of nostalgia, threatening to gloss over his eyes and bring him back to—
Takuto shook his head, his eyes moving towards the pavement. 'If you have not known about me for as long as the kids, then I can only beg that you may not know how mistaken you are.' He returned to staring up at Zenkichi, a small, wry smile forming.
Though, Zenkichi chuckled, returning with a genuine smile. His grey-teal eyes never wavered, his expression maintaining its softness. Takuto blinked, checking if it was there ever since their eyes met moments ago. There was admiration, almost revealing an enamor that rivaled an awestruck lover's.
Zenkichi shifted out of that gaze, as swift as it was present. He straightened up, rolling his shoulders slightly whilst the kids had returned to their own conversations over their shared meals. "You may find it hard to believe, but I have a sort of eye for stuff like that. I admit I’m not sure how I know that, but I can feel it...." A few more words followed, almost being captured by the wind in hopes that Takuto wouldn't hear them. "And besides, I'm sure it wasn't just me when I felt there was something holding us back."
Takuto swallowed, his throat becoming dry. No words could be strung together to create even a faint melody of his feelings. They were both observant, almost to an extent that it was unhealthy, projecting their thoughts on people who'd rather be free of such ideas. However, before he could even reply to any of Zenkichi's statements, the Inspector had excused himself from the group. He could only presume it was for business matters once more. But in his place was the sound of falling snow, the only noise he was haunted with. It swept away the noise of city streets, the rowdiness of the group of kids discussing their road trip plans.
Yet, what had caused him great fear then, had become a soft embrace that wrapped around Takuto. He hummed, letting his smile become loving. It was in such a way that made him hopeful, to accompany the group in hopes of meeting the man again.
'Maybe my name still holds some truth to it, right?'
You can also read this story on AO3.