strawberry kiss @lunarsparrows
strawberry kiss written for a friend on 07/18/20!

Oikawa's always had the habit of biting his lips.


His parents had done their best to remind him not to do it whenever they saw him chewing on his lips, whether it be out of anxiety, excitement, or simply boredom, but he never managed to fully kick the habit. 

His parents had done their best to remind him not to do it whenever they saw him chewing on his lips, whether it be out of anxiety, excitement, or simply boredom, but he never managed to fully kick the habit. 


They weren't the only ones either. Iwaizumi started nagging him about it after a month of being friends, and though he was loud and aggressive about it, Oikawa could always detect the trace of concern lying underneath his rough tone.


The habit didn't really bother him that much anyway. He just had to be more diligent about applying lip balm every night. 


His third year of middle school changes all that.


Kageyama Tobio. A prodigy with an astonishing amount of talent on the court and an insatiable hunger for improvement, for wins, for a peak that seems to grow higher and higher with each passing day. A peak that Oikawa jumps for but cannot reach.


The sharp sting of failure pierces his lungs with every breath he takes as he stands, alone, in the dark gym. His legs are aching and his hands shake as he attempts to do another jump serve, but he forces himself to straighten up with his left foot forward and the ball in his right hand. 


Toss, jump, hit.


Not good enough. Not perfect yet. Not good enough this serve isn't good enough I'm not good enough-


"Dumbass, what do you think you're doing?!"


A hand smacks the new ball out of his hands before he can react. Iwaizumi's voice echoes in the mostly-empty gym.


"How many times have I told you not to overwork yourself? You're going to-is that blood?"


Oikawa realizes that his lips have been bitten to the point of bleeding. The iron in his mouth is mocking.


"It's nothing," he mutters, touching the torn skin. "I just ran out of lip balm last week."


Iwaizumi says nothing, but Oikawa can feel his worried gaze as they clean up the fallen balls. Iwaizumi tells him that he'll punch him every time he bites his lip from now on, and Oikawa can't help but laugh at the contrast between the violence of his words and the obvious concern in his tone.


He finds a gift on his desk the next day.


It's wrapped neatly in pretty patterned paper, but there's no indication of who gave it to him. Oikawa slips the packaging into his backpack after examining the wrapping for any clues on who might've given it to him and failing.


He carefully unwraps it on the way home, trying his best not to tear the delicate paper.


"What are you doing?"


"Unwrapping a gift I got today!"


"Shittykawa got a gift?"


"Ooh, is Iwa-chan jealous?"


Oikawa grins when he sees what's inside. It's tinted lip balm, and when he takes off the cap, the heavy scent of the artificial strawberry flavor makes him slightly dizzy.




Iwaizumi ignores him.


"Iwa-chan, I didn't know you were so caring!"


Iwaizumi continues to ignore him, but his ears are red.


"I didn't know Iwa-chan could wrap things so nicely either! Did you do it yourself?"


"Can't you just say thank you like a normal person?" Iwaizumi grumbles, finally giving up.


Oikawa smiles and uncaps the lip balm again, slathering it onto his lips and taking out his compact mirror.


"It's not even the right color!"


He pokes fun at Iwaizumi the rest of the way home, who yells at him with a face redder than a tomato. Regardless, he makes sure to put on the lip balm every night. 



It's become a sort of tradition for Iwaizumi to gift him lip balm every year. They're third years in high school now, and every year, Iwaizumi had given him some kind of lip balm in varying flavors wrapped in the same patterned paper. Oikawa can recite every flavor in order perfectly: strawberry, vanilla, and taro milk tea. He wonders what he’ll get this year.


"I've stopped biting my lips last year, you know," he says to Iwaizumi the week before they graduate. They're lying on his bedroom floor, and Iwaizumi's hands are tapping out the rhythm to a song he doesn't know on his back. Oikawa feels giddy at the casual physical contact. "You don't have to keep giving me lip balm every year."


"Do you not want them anymore?"


Oikawa pauses. He stares at the glow-in-the-dark stars stuck on the ceiling. The light is feeble but comforting, and the humming of cicadas is familiar background noise.


"It's not like that," he says finally. "I just don't want you to think that you have to keep doing that every year."


"Shittykawa being thoughtful for once? What's going to happen next, aliens coming to abduct us?"


Iwaizumi chuckles, his words lacking any real bite to it. Oikawa feels his heart skip a beat at the sight of his smile.


"Hey! I'll have you know that I'm plenty thoughtful, thank you very much! And second of all, aliens better abduct me first, seeing how I've been trying for years!"





Oikawa looks up, surprised. Iwaizumi had always left his gifts somewhere—on his desk, in his locker, he's even slipped it into his backpack once and he didn't find it until a week of summer break had passed—but this was the first time he'd given it to Oikawa in person.


"Iwa-chan? What's the special occasion?"


Iwaizumi doesn't quite meet his eyes even as he shoves the gift into his hands.


"Just thought I'd give it to you in person this time, since we might not see each other at all soon."




A dull ache spreads across his chest. He's done his best to put it out of his mind lately, but now that there's nothing to distract him, it feels like a knife twisting in his heart.


"Iwa-chan, I never knew you were so thoughtful!"


His voice is slightly too high and his smile is slightly too bright and they both know it. Oikawa unwraps the gift carefully like every other time before he grins, eyes watery.


Strawberry flavored tinted lip balm.


Just like the first time.





Oikawa has just finished setting up everything he needs in his new college dorm and he flops onto the bed after inspecting everything, groaning. He lies there, silent. Though he had started burning a candle, the smell of the room is still foreign, and a quiet pang of homesickness strikes his heart like one of his powerful jump serves hitting plush carpet.


Absentmindedly, he reaches for the familiar, worn-out tube in his pockets. The artificial strawberry scent wafts out as soon as he takes off the cap, and he smiles as he lathers it onto slightly chapped lips. 


It feels like Iwaizumi's lips on his—


you should check out @hcjime on ao3 for more tender iwaoi goodness thank you for reading! find me on twitter as @lingwens
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