can you guys tell how much i love jouno yet
To be fair, they likely didn’t know it was having this effect on him.
The others were fully grown and getting the same level of enhancements, so the doctors had their surgeries and maintenance down exactly right. For a kid in the midst of puberty, getting the surgery on a smaller scale, it would be tough to pinpoint perfection. Because of that… he was constantly in pain. But since he’d be going undercover soon, he couldn’t let it show. He couldn’t let anything show.
After a while… he kinda got used to it. Not to say it ever stopped hurting, but he just pushed himself through it, no matter how awful it got. And he hated it. He wanted to argue that he shouldn’t have to go through this constant pain, but then he reminded himself that, well… they didn’t know.
So he let it be. And suffered quietly.
Then, of course, Jouno noticed. The wincing, the way he walked so carefully, how he seemed to double over from ramming his hip into a corner, how he fell over when stubbing his toes.
He approached Tachihara after a training session, his lips pursed. “Tachihara-kun, are you alright?” He asked, crossing his arms.
The younger made a face before tilting his head. “Yeah, I’m fine. Why wouldn’t I be?”
“Because to me, it sounds like you’re in too much pain. Like… all the time,” he explained, and he frowned more when Tachihara’s heart beat faster.
“Well, I can assure you, I’m fine,” he replied, grabbing his water bottle and going to leave. He wanted to get out as soon as possible, before Jouno could figure out -
“- You know you’re supposed to tell the doctors if you’re experiencing problems after the maintenance, right?” Jouno called, and Tachihara froze. Smirking, the taller uncrossed his arms and put a hand on his hip. He nailed it right on the head.
“It’s fine, Jouno-san. Just a little something unaccounted for that I can deal with,” he replied, except suddenly Jouno was right next to him and - he landed a punch in the middle of his stomach, which had Tachihara doubling over, his eyes wide as the pain courses through his entire body.
When he recovered enough, he heard Jouno talking to him.
“You’re supposed to be able to handle more than that, Tachihara-kun. I’m taking you to speak with your doctor, now,” Jouno stated firmly, handing him his shirt and pulling his own on before he started walking out. “Come on. You’re not getting out of this.”
Tachihara took deep breaths before standing upright and gripping his shirt in both hands. “It's… it’s just a chronic pain… all over. I can handle it, Jouno-san.”
“Well you shouldn’t have to, alright? Now shut up and follow me. If I hear any more protests out of you I’m going to knock you out and drag you there, got it?”
It took a moment for him to realize this was just one of Jouno’s ways of showing that he was worried, and that he cared about Tachihara. He didn’t want him to be in pain all the time.
“Okay, Jouno-san…” He paused, chewing on his lip before poking his shoulder. “Thank you.”
Jouno turned his head and reached to ruffle his hair with a shake of his head. “Don’t mention it.”