Fandom: Toward the Terra
Characters: Matsuka, Keith.
Notes: Written for the kink meme.
Summary: Matsuka bakes a pie. Simple, right?
Matsuka had few images of his childhood. Most of that part of his memory was filled instead with glimpses of other people's minds, as blurred as his own, and more and more, visions of Keith. But he wasn't entirely bereft of childhood memories. Scent had stayed with him. He could not remember his parents' faces, but he could remember the smell of coffee following him out the door as he went to school. He could remember coming home to the aroma of pastries baking. All of it was remote from him now, or at least where he had been, hiding in the outskirts of the military, not daring to take the examinations required for higher rank or more specialized professions. Only the coffee stayed with him, and sometimes that didn't seem like enough.
So when he learned that Members Elite had regular access to fresh ingredients from the planets, he couldn't pass up the chance.
He commandeered the kitchen using Keith's name, and he set to work with flour, eggs, sugar, and even fresh fruit--something he recalled only from disjointed, faded memories. The knowledge of how to make a pie tumbled back to him as he mixed the ingredients together. He must have watched his parents do this many times. Only the muscle memory of how to stir and how much to pour remained now.
He was tipping in another cup of flour when he felt a familiar hand take hold of his shoulder. "Matsuka."
Matsuka jumped a little. It was enough to knock the flour all over his uniform. "Keith! I'm sorry, if you need me I can--"
Keith cut him off with a quick twitch of his head. "No. Why was access to the kitchen so important to you that you made up orders to get it?"
Matsuka flushed a little. "It's the only thing I remember from my childhood," he confessed. He looked up at Keith, searching his face, his eyes, resisting the temptation to rummage in his head. "Keith...isn't there something you have a memory of? Something you'd try to do again?"
"No," Keith said. He cast a dismissive glance over Matsuka's flour-stained uniform. "It looks messy."
"Ah," Matsuka said, "normally you'd wear an apron for this, but--" One image he did retain: a woman, perhaps his mother, in an apron, humming to herself as she kneaded dough. He would never fit into the system the way she had. "I forgot," he concluded faintly.
"Be sure you clean your uniform after this," Keith said. His face was unreadable as he looked down at the ingredients. "What is it?"
Matsuka followed his gaze, puzzled. The crust was already starting to take shape, and the fruit had been peeled and sliced. It was clearly a pie. "It's a pie," he said.
"There's no need for a pie here," Keith said. "Don't do this again."
"Ah--!" Matsuka swallowed against the sting of regret. "Are you sure? Maybe after you've tried it..."
"Why would I try it?"
"Because I made it," Matsuka said softly. "And because you've never had pie before."
Keith was silent for a moment. "One piece," he finally said.
"You'll like it," Matsuka promised.