Five Times Shiro and Keith Insist That Their Fake Relationship is Indeed Fake, and the One Time It Totally Wasn’t
(Snippets from my Bleach AU feat. Shinigami Shiro and Substitute Shinigami Keith)

Teen (13+)
Chapters: 6
Words: 0

Speaking is Not Communication

Chapter 6
Thace (+1)


A typical morning in the Kogane household. Shiro is there, because parents (and uncles) love Shiro.

Chapter Notes:

Here’s the last part of this story! Short, and sweet, and a bit of a tease. Just Keith dealing with the deadly combination of his embarrassing uncles and his adorable not-boyfriend.


Breakfast was ready when Thace arrived downstairs that morning. Ulaz was in his usual seat at the table, drinking coffee and reading the news on his tablet. There was another cup ready for Thace, made exactly to his preference. Bustling around in the kitchen, preparing packed lunches, was Keith.

Keith cooked a lot these days, Thace noticed.

“Morning, Thace.” Keith said, not turning from his work.

“Good morning, kit.” Thace replied, picking up his mug and taking a sip.

Keith was humming. Thace looked towards his partner and Ulaz let out a bemused smile before returning to his reading.

Keith hummed a lot these days, too.

Many things were different with their Keith these days. He woke up earlier, talked more often and ate more than usual. For once, he didn’t have a part-time job. He’d never needed one, really, even before – Keith simply liked working and having his own money. But now, he spent his free time hanging out with his friends, who also came over more often lately.

“Lunch for two again?” Thace asked, peering over the teen’s shoulder to look at the three lunchboxes he was working on. One was for Ulaz, as usual. Another was for Keith. Thace was pretty sure the last one wasn’t his, because he wasn’t leaving the house today.

“It’s for Shiro.” said Keith, then he looked up at the man. “Eat already. You’re supposed to open up the clinic soon.”

“Ah.” Thace smiled, nodding.

If Keith wasn’t with his friends, he was with Shiro.

Shiro, who, as if summoned, knocked on the door and then let himself inside the house. After the first few times that he turned up in the morning to walk with Keith to school and instead got invited inside to join them for breakfast, they just told him to let himself in, moving forward. They were all too lazy to get up from the dining table.

“There he is, early as always.” Ulaz said, nodding towards the student. “How’s your morning, Shiro?”

“Pleasant so far, sir.” Shiro greeted, perfectly polite.


((Shiro was what Keith’s best friend Katie described as “100% A Gentleman, Has A Firm Handshake, Parents Love Him”. According to her brother Matt, Shiro is “The Perfect Boyfriend For Your Precious Keith (So Please Approve, We’re All So Done With Them)”.

Thace can see where they’re coming from.))


Ulaz nodded at their guest. “Take a seat, kid.”

Shiro obeyed quickly. “Thank you, sir.”

“Had breakfast yet?” Thace slid a plate stacked with toast towards him. “We told you, no need to be so formal. Just call us by our names.”

Shiro smiled sheepishly, taking a piece of toast for himself. “Right, thank you, sir- Uh. Thace.”

“Or Uncle.” Ulaz chimed in. “You’re part of the family now, so it should be fine.”

Shiro choked.

“Keith hasn’t called us that since he entered middle school.” Ulaz continued, and reached out to pat Shiro’s back like he had nothing to do with why their guest was now coughing violently.

“Stop bullying him.” Keith called from the kitchen. “And I never called you uncle, Ulaz.”

Ulaz looked like he’d been shot. Complete with a whimper and a hand to his chest.

Thace gasped. “Keith! How could you say that to your Uncle Ulaz?”

“I love you like you’re my own, kitten!” Ulaz despaired.

Shiro continued to cough.

“You’re both more embarrassing than usual, I see.” Keith stomped over to them, glaring at his uncles as he shoved a glass of water towards Shiro, who accepted it gratefully.


((From what Thace had heard from Hunk, Shiro and Keith were ” Hashtag-Relationship-Goals” .))


Keith went back to the kitchen and returned with the lunchboxes. He set one down in front of a still-fake-sobbing Ulaz, then moved to unzip Shiro’s backpack and stuffed the other two inside.


((Thace can see Hunk’s point.))


Still, they were having too much fun, because Shiro was blushing as red as Keith’s shirt, and Keith was aggressively biting on toast.

So Thace shifted in his seat, and reached out to touch the giant framed portrait of his dear sister-

“KROLIA! Your son has been cooking for the man he loves! Everyday!”

Ulaz brightened up. “Oh, you’d be so proud of him!”

Keith scowled. “It’s-… It’s not everyday!”

“Shiro, you say something too.” Ulaz said.

Shiro blinked, having only just recovered from choking on his breakfast, and turned to look at the portrait, at a loss. “Uh…”

Keith got much of his looks from his mother, for certain. It was hard to miss – the portrait itself was hard to miss, big as it was, almost occupying a whole wall. Maybe he’ll ask Keith about it sometime.

Shiro cleared his throat. “Your son’s cooking is the best I’ve tasted, Ma’am.”

Thace and Ulaz cheered. Keith sighed in exasperation.

“Stop enabling them. I hate you.” he said, shaking his head as he grabbed his own bag and went to find his shoes.

“Please don’t.” Shiro called after him, also standing up.

“You hardly ate anything! Grab one for the road, kid.” Thace said, raising the plate of toast to their guest. “And for Keith, too.”

Shiro nodded, grabbing two slices. “Thanks for the breakfast, sir-”

“Uncle.” Ulaz interjected.

“Uncle.” Shiro hastily corrected, then froze when he realized what he said.

The two men looked very pleased.

Keith reappeared beside Shiro and took his arm. “You’re both horrible.” he told his uncles, then pulled Shiro away.

They were almost out the door when Thace shouted their usual farewell. “Bye, kitten! We love you!”

“Unfortunately, I love you too.” Keith called back.

That was another one of the many different things about Keith these days.


It hadn’t even been a minute after they heard the front door close that Thace noticed something amiss in the table.

“Oh, dear.” he said.

Ulaz looked up. “What is it?”

Thace grabbed the notebook that Keith must have left behind and jogged to the door, throwing it open, hoping to catch-

Keith and Shiro abruptly stepping away from each other, eyes wide and faces red.


Thace had the grace not to grin slyly. He kept his face carefully blank as he offered the notebook. “You forgot something.”

It took Keith several seconds to react. He nodded and took the item. “Y-Yeah. Thanks, Uncle Thace.”

“Take care, both of you.” Thace winked, and then went back inside.

He was whistling when he sat back in the table and picked up his coffee mug.

Ulaz raised an eyebrow, reading his partner’s mood all too well. “What happened?”

“Keith called me ‘uncle’ again.”

“Did he?”

“I think I almost caught them kissing.”

At that, Ulaz had no words.

They were eating peacefully when they heard crashing noises and a yelp from upstairs. There was a muffled, panicked cry that sounded something like ‘They forgot me again!’

Ulaz chuckled. “There he goes.”

“Subtle as always.” Thace nodded.

“Do you think Keith will ever tell us, willingly?”

“I really don’t know.” Thace sighed, idly stirring his coffee. “Have you heard back from Coran?”

“Not much, but he said there’s nothing to worry about for now.” Ulaz replied. Then, he put his tablet down. “Thace.”


When Ulaz said nothing, Thace looked up and saw the other man looking at him- No. Past him. Ulaz was eyeing the portrait on the wall thoughtfully. Thace rested his chin on his hand, thoughtful. “You think it’s time?”

“You just said you almost caught those kids kissing.”

Thace closed his eyes and sighed. “You’re right.” He tilted his head to look up at his sister’s smiling face and laughed lightly. “She should hear about this.”

He took a sip of his coffee. Only Keith could get it this perfect.

Then Ulaz said, “We’ll not tell her about the giant photo, though.”

Thace shivered. “She’d kill us.”

Ulaz hummed, smiling. “She would.”

Thace took another moment to look at the photo before turning back to his breakfast.

“Alright. I’ll call Kolivan.”



Chapter Notes:

Were Keith and Shiro about to kiss for real in there? Or have they kissed already? I don’t know. You don’t know. Nobody knows!
Also, just a sorta disclaimer that Thace and Ulaz ended up as Keith’s guardians here because I started writing this series before we ever met Krolia.

How big is the portrait, you ask? It’s THIS BIG, for your reference. I’ll let y’all guess how exactly that happened.

Thanks so much for all the kudos and comments these past few days! It meant a lot to me! Now let’s go let S7 destroy our lives, fuck yeah! <3

Story End Notes:

Fic title is a reference to the iconic ‘Speaking Is Not Communication’ shirt that Ichigo has in the Bleach anime and manga.

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