Nagato Hiroki doesn’t go out drinking with coworkers. It’s not that he doesn’t like alcohol (he does) and it’s not that he exhibits any strange behavior when he drinks (no more than most people at least)–it’s simple because…
Nagato: ‘Once, long ago…I had an unfortunate experience…’
Nagato used to be quite the playboy–going out drinking with friends when he pleased and with a hot girlfriend to boot. Everything was coming up roses for him–until his father suddenly died, and everything came crashing down.
On top of the death of a parent he cared for, he and his mother had to deal with the crushing debt he’d left behind, which meant they had to sell the family home as well as the plush condo Nagato had been living in, instead taking up residence in a decrepit, cramped apartment. To make matters worse, Nagato had been attending a private college–which meant he had to worry about covering his tuition as well.
While he’d managed to not have to drop out after practically begging relatives for loans, he’d still had to take up multiple part-time jobs to afford his bills, which meant less time to spend with his girlfriend, who subsequently dumped him.
Nagato: “So I guess in the end, all you were after was my money.”
Girlfriend: “It’s not like you’ve got anything else going for you!”
He drinks himself into a stupor and passes out on a public bench–where a good samaritan pauses to see if he’s all right. When he snaps Do I look all right to you?! the stranger admits that no, he doesn’t–which is why he stopped to check up on him. Nagato then promptly thanks him for his kindness by vomiting all over his shirtfront.
As luck would have it, the guy had lived nearby, and so they’d retired to his apartment to get clearned up. He reprimanded Nagato for drinking so much, hoping that he’d learned a lesson, and the humiliation had finally been too much as he fough back tears of frustration at how low he’d sunk.
Everything that had happened to him just started falling from his lips then in a self-loathing mantra, but the man didn’t make fun of him or offer meaningless platitudes. Instead–
He’d embraced Nagato, quieting his panicked response with the amused comment that Nagato probably never lets himself go before his friends, so he may as well cry all he wants on a stranger’s shoulder. Nagato had bitten out that he should mind his own business…but gave in anyway.
However–one thing led to another…
Nagato: “Shit…I DID IT.”
Or rather–he got done. He had been mortified with himself–not only sleeping with some guy he hadn’t known from Adam but being on bottom, when he’s only ever topped in the past.
To ensure he never has to see the guy again and to avoid being recognized, Nagato undergoes a complete makeover, buckling down in his studies and focusing on turning his life around. Now, though, he’s got a steady job and is working to pay back all of the money he borrowed from relatives. He’s never going to let him sink back into that pit again.
In the hallway on break, he overhears some coworkers discussing an incoming new superior from the main office, stepping in to head up a development team. He’s fairly young–not much older than Nagato himself–and he hopes it’s a smooth transition. He just wants to keep his head down and his nose to the grindstone.
His boss then steps in with a man in tow–Kurosawa from the main branch. Nagato’s reaction?
Nagato: ‘THAT GUY?!’
Of course, it’s his one-night-stand from years before, and he quells his initial panic with the mental reminder that he isn’t who he used to be, has completely changed his look, and so there’s no way the guy will recognize him. He just needs to keep his cool…
Kurosawa: “It’s been a while.”
TO BE CONTINUED…