w-inds., We Can’t Dance

Title: We Can’t Dance [Keita, Ryuichi, Ryohei]
Rating/Warnings: G (YOU SEE THAT G, WULFY?!) except for when i use the word “panty-melting”.
Summary: The New Paradise shoot is not going well at all. And Ryohei makes the choreographer cry.
AN. LET’S NEVER SPEAK OF THIS AGAIN. It’ll probably help if you’ve seen the videos for New Paradise and Feel the Fate, preferably in that order. But actually I’m sort of hoping that none of you even knows who w-inds. are.

We Can’t Dance

The New Paradise shoot is not going well, to say the least.

For one thing, the new director can’t remember their names, and even when he does, can’t keep them straight, so when he yells at them, usually the only person doing something right stops immediately.

But that’s practically never, because none of them seem to have done much right today, despite spending all morning with the choreographer. It’s nothing new for Keita, who usually learns about half a routine before they tell him “oh sweetie, just sing and wink, they’ll forget,” but it turns out that Ryuichi and Ryohei did a sequence just a little too close to this when they were back in school, and Ryohei, who always takes the longest to memorize the order of the steps, did the turn before the shimmy so many times it reduced Daisuke-sensei to tears.

And even when they start the shooting, they have to keep stopping because the director claims they are too shiny and the lights from the freak bridge set are glaring off their foreheads.

“Stop sweating so much!” he hollers while the makeup girls run out and pat at their faces ineffectually.

“Do you know what these shirts are MADE OF?!” Ryuichi demands, slapping at a powder puff, and then they have to call a break while they get all the powder off the black outfits.

In the end, they have to give up and switch to doing the shots with the white outfits for the rest of the day, and at least Ryuichi and Ryohei finished working on the rap the night before, even if Ryohei needs some alone time with a can of pineapple juice before he can face the director again.

“There you go,” Keita soothes, prying the can out of Ryohei’s hand, because if he lets Ryuichi do it, their white shirts will all be covered in the juice, and they’ll have to switch back to the red again, and nobody wants to do the red again today. Or ever.

Ryuichi does a cruelly accurate impression of the director’s fluttering, nervous hand tic, and that gets Ryohei’s swoon-inducing smile back on. It isn’t quite panty-melting yet, but their manager says they’re still learning, they have time.

But they just aren’t on today, and it shows, and they know it shows, and their manager must know as well, because he practically hurls the quickly burned DVD of the day’s footage at them before fleeing their hotel room at a dead run.

“Just put it in, get it over with,” Ryohei sighs, as Kieta dangles the disc between two fingers in disgust. He snatches the remote off the table in between the beds and flips on the TV. A Takui video is on the music channel, which they had been watching that morning, and Keita hurriedly jams the disc into the machine, because if they watch their footage after anything that even approaches art, they will have to put the razor that Ryuichi bought on the pretense of becoming a man to a far more realistic use.

The beginning is them doing the routine in the black outfits, and then doing it again, and then again, and then again, and by the fifth time, when Keita and Ryuichi have both contracted Ryohei’s ill-timed shimmy, Keita lets out a little wail of frustration and Ryuichi snatches the remote out of his hands to fast-forward to the other stuff.

They don’t look any better dancing at 8x, although the director’s flailing tantrum and the scattering of the makeup girls is pretty funny. The laughter dies down, however when they get to the stuff in the white outfits, which involves quite a bit of Ryohei and Ryuichi rapping alone in front of the blindingly-lit mirror-frame.

Ryohei makes a soft, pained noise at the first shot of him, then it switches to Ryuichi for a few minutes. When it returns to Ryohei, he actually shrieks. Keita and Ryuichi turn their heads to find Ryohei pressing both hands to his face.

“My NOSE!” he howls, voice muffled behind the hands that are hiding the offending appendage. “It’s huge!”

“It isn’t!” Keita says, but when he turns back, he has to admit that the glaring lights are catching it in a less-than-aesthetic manner. “Well…” Keita hums in the back of his throat a little, trying to soften the blow. “Ryuichi’s doesn’t really look much better.”

“Hey!” Ryuichi punches Keita in the shoulder, but it’s half-hearted because he is distracted, wincing at himself stumbling over his own feet in one take. There is another moment of silence before Ryuichi adds what they’re all thinking. “This sucks.”

“We suck,” Ryohei adds, only it comes out more like “eeooo” with his hands pressed tightly to his nose and mouth.

Keita chews his lip, not willing to commit verbally to the truth. “We’re just having an awkward stage.” Ryuichi snorts and Ryohei clutches his nose harder, and Keita plows ahead. “No, really! We’re all having growth spurts, look at my hands! They’re like big pink spiders!”

It should be funny and they should all laugh, but they look at the screen, and it’s just true. And it’s kind of painful to watch.

“We’ll just…” Keita sounds like he’s asking, though, instead of reassuring. “We’ll grow into them.”

“What if we don’t?” Ryohei mumbles. “What if we’re growing out of…it?”

“It?” Keita blinks. “You mean…” He flutters a hand that encompasses all three of them, the hotel room, and Ryohei’s nose on the TV screen. “…this?”

“If every shoot’s going to be like this,” Ryuichi says glumly, staring at the TV, “maybe we should tell them no. No more of this.”

That strikes all three of them dead silent as they exchange stricken glances. No more of ‘this’ also means no more Ryuichi trying to teach them guitar chords, no more Ryohei spotting their shaky backbends, even no more Keita narrating their lives in commercial jingles (“Milk does Ryuichi’s body go~od!” he’d sung that day at lunch and “oh god SHUT UP!” Ryuichi had answered while Ryohei snorted apple-cranberry juice up his nose).

But if things keep going like this…Keita sighs and takes the remote gently from Ryuichi’s hand so he can turn the DVD off.

When the music station flips back on, they are faced with a very familiar red and white set, and the opening lines of “Feel the Fate” are coming out of the mouth of a fifteen-year-old Keita who has impossibly big eyes and even bigger earrings.

“Oh man,” Ryuichi snickers, giving Keita’s shoulder a shove with his own, “look at you! You couldn’t dance at all!”

“You keep looking at my feet to see what the next move is!” Keita makes an outraged face and shoves Ryuichi back. “They wouldn’t let you sing a single word! And none of us could dance!”

“I could dance,” Ryohei protests, lowering his hands cautiously so they can understand him. They hang in the air near his neck, ready to cover his heinous schnoz at a moment’s notice. He raises an eyebrow at Keita. “You couldn’t even wink, you look like you have a nervous tic!”

And just like that, it’s funny again, and when the shadowed hip-hop dancers appear on screen to cover the fact that they can barely handjive, all three of them crack up.

“We just had to sit there!” Keita laughs, pointing at the three of them, “and they gave us that basketball because we kept clapping out of rhythm!”

“Oh god, what are we doing?” Ryohei demands in horror as the camera flashes to him doing some sort of shoulder flail.

“I think it’s called free-styling,” Ryuichi suggests, and Keita lets out a snort that sets the other two off until they are all clutching their stomachs and sagging against each other, and Ryohei slips off the edge of the bed suddenly and lands hard on his butt, at which point Ryuichi starts laughing so hard that no sound is even coming out of his mouth, and when Keita reaches down to help Ryohei up between snorts, Ryohei grabs both their jean legs and yanks them crashing down as well.

“Ryo?” Keita asks when they are too sore to laugh anymore, and Ryohei’s ‘hmm’ in reply makes Keita’s head bounce a little where it rests on Ryohei’s stomach. Ryuichi’s elbow is digging into Keita’s side, but in a sort of good way. “We’ll make them cut the nose shots.”

“What are you going to do, make them censor his head?” Ryuichi asks, but the soft, pleased noise that Ryohei makes is all that Keita is listening for.


“The next one will be better,” Keita promises as they wrap up the shoot and brace themselves to see the first edit, but he’s eyeing their manager coldly as he says it, and the words are obviously not meant for Ryohei and Ryuichi.

They didn’t cut the shot. If anything, the lights are brighter, the colors sharper as Ryohei raps, blissfully unaware of his nostrils’ subversive flare.

Ryohei’s hands fly up instinctively, but Ryuichi and Keita grab his wrists in mid-air, one on either side of Ryohei, and force his hands back to his lap before Ryohei can break his nose just so he can demand that they fix it the way he wants, like he did with those headphones in Another Days.

“Only the nose kno~ws,” Keita sings under his breath as he exchanges a glance with Ryuichi, who rolls his eyes as he pulls the super-secret weapon, grape Fanta, out of one of his cargo pants’ plentiful pockets and presses it into Ryohei’s hands.

But they are done with those white outfits forever, so it doesn’t matter when Ryohei snaps the top open without tapping it first and they all get sprayed right in the face.

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