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“Now, smile!”


You did...and he adored it.

He couldn't get enough of you. No matter how many snapshots he took, no matter how many moments he preserved on polaroid, it was never enough.


Standing, leaning against the wall of HOMRA with your arms lightly folded and your expression designed to be 'deep' in some way or other, you looked picturesque. These modeling photos were just for a bit of fun, that was what he had told you, and good thing too, because between each take you'd suddenly be spluttering and stifling laughter. It felt silly.


“I'm sorry I'm sorry, just give me a minute...hehe...”


Little did you know where these pictures would end up. He always took two, giving you one, but also keeping his own copy. It seemed innocent enough from an outsiders perspective, he kept photos of all of you, right?

His manner of keeping yours though...that was where things were perhaps a little different.


He had a wall for them. One full wall, taken up from inch to inch by images he had taken, and only of you.

Some willingly. Others not so much.


When he sat on his bed he would stare up at them with hooded, hollow eyes. Wondering when he would get his opportunity.


This kind of beauty couldn't be captured with a lens.


He would step up and walk over to some, allowing his slender fingers to stroke against their surfaces, down slowly, as if he were touching your face for real. As if the paper was your skin...

When the hazel haired boy leaned in and pressed his lips to the photos he closed his eyes and imagined that he could be kissing you.


Wasn't that the dream?


If only it could be real. If only he could touch you, kiss you, and connect to you in some sort of meaningful way.


...Why did it have to be Yata?

Look...Totsuka had never had an issue with him before. They were friends, by all means. Yet...now you were together, he suddenly found himself hating the boy. Seeing his flaws, and despising them.


He was bratty. Boorish. He was skittish and immature, he didn't treat you as well as he felt like he could in his stead. What you needed in your life was a soft mannered gentleman, not a big kid. Even Mikoto in all his stoic silence would have been a better choice.


Totsuka thought he was best though.


It was just a shame that you had to be trapped in photos like this. He wanted to set you free. Bring you into his hold in reality, rather than confining you to a slip of paper pinched between his fingers.


How could he go about doing that? What were the steps to making a person fall in love with you? If only he could conjure up a potion or a drug that would turn your heart in his direction instead of any other. He would gladly make short work of showing you why it was worthwhile to love him.


Though instead of making magic, he instead had a practical recipe that just might work in this bitter reality.


Zipties.

Chloroform.


A bat...just in case.


It was surprisingly easy to gain the first two, and the latter was something he stole from Misaki's room, a spare and dented one he likely wouldn't miss, stowed away in the back of his closet. Totsuka happily took it for himself, though concluded that he would only use it on you if absolutely necessary. He didn't want to risk any bruising.


On top of that, he needed a place to keep you, and to keep his ever expanding collection of photographs, which were becoming harder and harder to hide behind the posters he had. Luckily basement apartments in Shizume City happened to be cheaper than dirt, and nobody was going to turn away such a fresh faced customer as him.


The only missing ingredients were good timing and a pinch of luck, which luckily came along right when he needed them...


You two happened to be out together on the streets, having gone for some late night fast food. You tossed the last few crispier fries into your mouth and dumped the box in a passing garbage bin, before dusting off your salted hands and humming.


“Mm, so good! I know it's bad for me but I just can't help myself.”

Totsuka beamed at you sweetly, bending over somewhat to the side and giving you an endearing look, “It's okay now and then, right? Treat yourself~”

“Exactly!”


From your naïve perspective, everything was just fine and dandy. You were already making plans for the evening ahead, though technically you were planning to make even more plans, those pertaining to your date with Yata tomorrow. You had finally managed to convince him to come and see a remotely romantic movie with you, and you were just excited to see how he might react to it.


Pity you never even made it back to HOMRA.



“...Mm...nnn...?”

Why did everything smell so sweet?


Your eyes started to open, the world around you initially blurred and disjointed. You tried to lift your hands to rub them free of what you thought was simply sleep, but it seemed you couldn't. As soon as you tried, your wrists were tugged back and held fast to the back of the chair you were sitting in. Attempting to move your feet garnered the same results, and even your waist had been tied for good measure.


Absolutely pinned, your eyes started to widen and clear naturally, as you realized that you had no idea where you even were right now. This certainly wasn't your HOMRA bedroom.


No...the room you were in was pretty small, smaller than your own. At best it was 3x3, and every corner of every wall was plastered and pasted with what you had initially mistaken for some sort of over the top wallpaper, but had soon realized was a mass collage of photographs.


Photographs of you.


“Wh-what the hell...what the hell!? AH!! AHH SOMEBODY HELP!!”

Immediately you broke into screaming, becoming more and more hysterical as you struggled wildly and found that you truly couldn't budge. All your lashing only lead the chair to topple over with a loud thump, and you groaned as your cheek planted to the floor.


While you were laying there, hair and tears all over your face, you heard the door squeak open, and the sound of footsteps coming over near you. Instantly you were tense, wondering who it could possibly be. What kind of sick fuck had been stalking you and Totsuka like this!?


“...Oh dear, looks like you've fallen and you can't get up. Here, don't worry my love, I'll help you...”

That tender voice was one you couldn't believe you recognized.


It was Totsuka.


His hands came down and righted you again, pulling you up off the floor and sitting you straight before him. Once the initial dizziness wore off, you raised your head and looked at him in petrified terror, starting to tremble all the more when you saw how deluded his face looked.


He wore a long, quivering smile, and his eyes were hooded, sultry and clouded, as if every glance he shot at you was as lewd as it could get. Yet he spoke as if he were some kind of angel.

“Good thing I came when I heard all that noise. How are you feeling darling?” he leaned over, bending at his waist, making you want to recoil as his face came closer, but you couldn't, “I imagine you're a bit confused right now.”


“...I...I don't understand why you've done this...”

You whimpered, and quickly looked around the room again. So many of these photos had been taken when you weren't even aware of it. It was sickening, seeing pictures of yourself getting out of the shower or lying in bed, knowing now that even in those vulnerable moments he had been watching you.


...How could he do this?


“You don't understand?” Totsuka hummed and straightened up again, before walking over to the centerpiece of the room. You couldn't believe you hadn't noticed it until now.


He had a polaroid camera set up on a tall tripod, right in front of where your seat was.

Tonight, you were going to be his subject.


“Eventually you will. For the moment, I want to take a few photos...so-”

“No! NO! LET GO OF ME!!”

Totsuka paused, then sighed, quitting his fiddling with the lens so he could come walking back over to you. You cowered in his shadow. He seemed to tower over you from this perspective.


“...[Y/N]...”

“LET ME GO LET ME GO!!! YOU CAN'T DO THIS TO ME!! YOU CAN'T!!”

“[Y/N]. Listen to me.”


Suddenly he dropped down to your level again. Face to face, he leaned in until he was gazing right at your eyes, and his hand placed itself around the bottom of your face, squeezing your cheeks just a little bit.

“I don't want to have to punish you for being insolent.”


Your crying ceased into a hiccup of shock. He started smiling again, almost sickeningly. His fingers softened their hold and stroked down your face, to your neck and eventually a little under your shirt. Just upon your shoulder, where they rested teasingly.


“There we go. See, how easy was that? Now all you have to do is keep still, and do one more thing for me.”

Totsuka laid a kiss by the corner of your lips, not caring how numb you were in that moment, before retreating to the tripod again. He stood behind it, and closed one eye.


That void of a lens stared back at your crying face, and his saccharine voice was all you could hear.


“Smile~”