Stranger in Morioh @antirepurp
Where's the Joy in Life Drawing, Actually?

“He definitely has a crush on you.”

“He does not,” Jotaro grunted. “If he did he’d have a terrible taste in people.”

Kakyoin felt a sting of something in his chest. Instead of addressing it and risking dealing with something complicated, he went back to his sketchbook, resuming scratching together an illustration of Heaven’s Door. What a curious little stand it was. Kakyoin now understood Jotaro’s dislike of it.

The two of them were sat in Jotaro’s hotel room, yet again. Jotaro was working on his thesis on the coffee table, his tall form hunched over it like a gremlin. The mere sight of it brought discomfort to Kakyoin’s own back. Jotaro could’ve - and should have - been working at the desk, but had insisted the couch was fine for the job. It clearly wasn’t, but Kakyoin knew the man was too stubborn to listen to common sense right now. And, well, it’s not like Kakyoin disliked his company.

He finished up the sketch of Heaven’s Door, being satisfied enough with it, and looked over the spread. It was filled with other doodles the two of them had drawn in the cafe earlier. At some point while Kakyoin and Rohan had been sparring, Star Platinum had stolen Kakyoin’s pencil and sketched a still of the two men and their stands. Kakyoin and Hierophant Green in particular were detailed to a fault, and Kakyoin reluctantly had to admit the drawing made him look kind of cool. Afterwards he had contributed with an estimation of Rohan’s face (while the man had been under the Hierophant’s control, of course) and some careless recreations of the bagel Kakyoin had claimed. Some tea had spilled on the page, coloring it a shade of brown.

And then there were Jotaro’s dumb caricatures of a very angry Rohan. And Star Platinum punching Rohan. Kakyoin had added some blush on the mangaka’s face with a nearly-dry red marker. Jotaro had written a ‘yare yare’ next to it.

“Why don’t you like him?” Kakyoin asked.

“I don’t dislike him,” Jotaro said. “He’s fundamentally good, I guess. But he’s slimy. Pretends to be nice to get shit out of people. And the stand...”

“Understandable,” Kakyoin nodded.

“He’s boring,” Jotaro muttered.

“Boring?”

“I dunno. His personality revolves around his work,” Jotaro explained the best he could. “Everything he does seems to be for that manga he draws.”

Kakyoin hummed. He didn’t know whether it was true or not, but decided not to take Jotaro’s word for it entirely. The man was great at reading his enemies, but outside of that Kakyoin would rather not trust his knowledge of human nature. Or people’s motivations for that matter.

The spread was missing a date. Kakyoin scratched it down next to Star Platinum’s still, his eyes resting on it for a moment. Life drawing. He had managed to sneak in a course of that in college, but that had been the last time he had actually practiced the skill. Kakyoin despised drawing from life: he was too much of a perfectionist to fully enjoy it, and thus his contributions to the sketchbook had always been more about the defeated enemy stands he drew from memory. If the model was dead no one could compare it to the art. The thought was morbid, but oddly comforting.

There was still some space on the spread. Kakyoin picked up the book, and glanced over to Jotaro. He was sitting relatively still. The angle wasn’t a complete pain in the ass, probably. Sure, why not.

Kakyoin started sketching.

He tried to ignore the environment for the most part, throwing together some vague lines to indicate furniture. Built Jotaro’s posture out of shapes. The proportions were a little off, but Jotaro had always had an odd build, so it was hardly Kakyoin’s fault when the man’s head turned out a bit too small compared to his shoulders. Kakyoin tried to work fast for now; long lines, estimations, focus on the feeling rather than what his eyes saw. Alas, it didn’t take long until he was scratching small lines on the paper again, defining details and the little bits that looked off and got on his nerves. God, he hated life drawing. He would never have fared well in an art school.

He glanced over to Jotaro from time to time, studying him. His face seemed softer than ten years ago, but he looked generally more tired as a trade-off. His hair was as nonsensical as ever, even if it was better kept and shorter. The resting bitch face was ever present, but less intense. Probably still threatening to people who didn’t know him, though. Kakyoin considered himself lucky, being one of the few people Jotaro would loosen up with, and actually show the warmth he had within himself. He was like a geode. Or a melon. No one ate the melon rind, did they?

Jotaro’s eyes shifted over to Kakyoin. He raised an eyebrow. Kakyoin shrugged, which was enough for Jotaro, who resumed his writing. Kakyoin went back to the sketch. What a meaningful exchange.

He defined Jotaro’s form carefully. He wasn’t exactly a soft, round kind of man, he was more. Heh. Edgy. And sharp. So Kakyoin’s linework adapted, to sharper and stronger and edgier lines. Jotaro shifted on the couch, much to Kakyoin’s agony, but it didn’t matter too much at this point. The pose itself was already down, and Kakyoin would’ve much rather improvised the folds on the clothes than tried to replicate them. Jotaro’s nose was interesting, curving downwards and making his profile that much more unique. It was a shame the angle didn’t let Kakyoin draw him from the side, but he took care to give the nose the attention it deserved. Kakyoin had always liked Jotaro’s nose. His own was too pointy and large, and he wasn’t fond of it. It was one of the many reasons why Kakyoin never drew self-portraits. He looked at the drawing’s face, his own eyes narrowing in disappointment as he saw how bad the eyes he had drawn on Jotaro looked. He shaded over them, and started applying it in other places as well. Thank goodness Jotaro still wore hats, allowing Kakyoin to cover his fuck-ups.

The evening slid on, and eventually Jotaro got up from the couch, straightening his spine and groaning as it popped.

“I told you that was a terrible idea,” Kakyoin said, scratching some finishing touches on his drawing. Jotaro mumbled something in response and walked to the phone.

“Take out or room service?” he asked.

“Is there a sushi place that does take out?”

“No.”

“Room service,” Kakyoin decided.

“I don’t think they have sushi.”

“I literally don’t care what they bring up here, it’s all... not good, but better than most hotel food.”

Jotaro snorted, and dialed the number. Kakyoin’s eyes rested on the man’s form. It was unique. Jotaro had always stuck out in crowds, hadn’t he? He was tall, somewhat wide, not as in shape as he used to be but still had a ton of natural muscle mass. Joseph had had a tendency to joke about it running in the Joestar family, which might’ve been true - the old man himself had looked well-preserved back in the day, and from what Kakyoin remembered of Holly she hadn’t exactly fit the stereotype of a fragile and thin woman, either.

He compared his drawing to the model currently ordering their dinner. As expected they looked nothing alike to his eye. Kakyoin shook his head and (carefully) flicked the sketchbook on the couch. Fuck life drawing, Star Platinum could take care of that in the future. He sighed and leaned back in the chair, stretching his arms and popping his back. He guessed he had been hunching over a bit, too. Oh the hypocrisy. Jotaro finished the call, put down the receiver, and walked back to the couch. The sketchbook caught his attention, and he picked it up. Kakyoin’s eyes widened for a fleeting moment. Oh yeah, he hadn’t told Jotaro he had been drawing him.

Jotaro’s eyes scanned the day’s spread, and the moment they came to a halt Kakyoin knew he had noticed the drawing. He could feel the embarrassment rising up to his cheeks.

“Sorry it sucks,” he said as casually as he could, his eyes fixated on the definitely super-interesting patterns on the carpet. Jotaro didn’t respond immediately, allowing Kakyoin to also realize he had been self-deprecating out loud, and this time it wasn’t veiled in a layer of irony. Shit.

“I love it,” Jotaro said, his voice as sincere as ever. Kakyoin heart jumped as he looked up, immediately examining Jotaro’s face. The man was smiling, just slightly, but it was there.

Kakyoin blinked, then shook his head. Jotaro was just saying that because he liked all of Kakyoin’s art. It wasn’t technically impressive, or groundbreaking, or the kind of stuff people would go to art galleries for. But the words warmed his heart nonetheless.

And for once Kakyoin didn’t know how to continue the conversation, and thus the room sat in silence. He was too preoccupied by Jotaro’s compliment, and analyzing the feeling it had left behind. Its warmth and sincerity left him thoroughly embarrassed. It was stupid, and confusing, and Kakyoin would’ve rather ignored it if he just could have. For fuck’s sake, he was almost 30, he shouldn’t have been feeling like a kid experiencing a crush for the first time in his life.

A crush? No, wait, that wasn’t the right analogy. It couldn’t have been.

“Kakyoin?” Jotaro broke the man out of his thoughts. Kakyoin glanced over to him, and shook his head, trying to get the warm embarrassment off his face.

“Sorry, I. Spaced out for a second there,” he said. There was a knock on the room’s door, diverting both his and Jotaro’s attention away from whatever the conversation was about to escalate to.

“Must be the food,” Jotaro said. “I’ll get it.”

As he walked to the door Kakyoin sank into the chair a bit and took off his glasses, rubbing his eyes with his thumb and index finger.

Crush. What was he thinking?

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