I don't own Prince of Tennis. If I did, Sanada Genichirou [the handsomest] would so keep his hat off. I also don't own the song 'Valentine Kiss'. Translations of Japanese words and terms are found at the bottom of the fic. Cheers... dane!
"See you tomorrow," Shishido Ryou heard his team mate call from the doorway of his house. He was already at the end of the driveway, so he just turned around and gave his friend a slight wave and a tip of his cap before breaking into a jog to reach the few blocks to his house. Oshitari Yuushi had rented out some movies to watch over the weekend. Shishido, hoping it was some sort of action or comedy movie had walked the few blocks to Oshitari's house only to find him sitting eagerly in front of the television watching a corny sappy romance movie, the kind where you have the rich girl chasing after the poor guy she can't have because he's lower in class than her and then he confesses to her but she's heartbroken because she can't have him and so on. Nevertheless, Shishido stayed, feeling somewhat too lazy to return to his home that moment. Occasionally he would hear an excited shout from Oshitari, who was situated on the couch, or the familiar clichι phrases like 'your eyes sparkle like diamonds' that went through one ear and came out the other. It wasn't that Shishido found the movie completely boring, or his teammate. It was just that there were other important things occupying his mind. Like a certain second-year student. Shishido took a quick glance at his watch; just a little over 10 o'clock. Instead of turning left to his house, he took a right turn and power walked the 100 or so metres to the park. He took a seat on the swing, ignoring that his legs toughed the ground at an uncomfortable length. He intended to have a mild peaceful time, but his surges of thoughts were lurching into mental overdrive. Scenes from film replayed themselves in his mind. The only difference was instead of the couple in the film, it was Shishido and 'the' second-year student. Him and Choutarou Ootori. The last scene of the movie had been set on Valentines Day, reminding Shishido it was Valentine's Day the next day. Not that he needed reminding though; he had been counting down the days since mid-January. Shishido looked up and searched the sky for his constellation. Among all the dazzling pinpoints, he managed to identify his, Libra. The horoscopes had specifically said 'be courageous, make your decision that has been plaguing you for the past weeks and something good will happen'. Shishido had taken these words into account, feeling as if they were specifically directed at him. A smile crept up on Shishido's face. He wasn't really smiling at anything in particular though. But he had been dreaming about the annual carnival to celebrate Valentines Day. All of Hyotei's tennis team would be there, and that included a mister Choutarou Ootori. Shishido stood up from the swing and began the short distance to his house with a spring in his step and a smile on his face.
"Come on, Toshiki!" the excited shouts of a young boy wafted through Shishido's open window followed by the mother fervently calling after him. Squeals of girls and brash talk from boys floated through his window, arousing Shishido from his sleep. Shishido lay in bed for a few more minutes listening to the lively chatter. They must be going to the carnival, he thought to himself. 10 seconds went by. Anyone passing by Shishido's window would have heard a loud shout. "OH MY GOODNESS, THE CARNIVAL!" followed by an agonising groan. In surprise, Shishido had sat up so quickly he had cracked his back, resulting in some pain.
His older brother Yoshio, whom he shared a room with, entered the door and scolded Shishido for making such a racket and then added, "by the way, your friend is waiting at the door." Shishido kicked his brother out of his bedroom, claiming he had to change. He quickly donned a pair of black pants and a white undershirt with black lining. He put a red collared long sleeve dress shirt made from micro fibre on top of that and did up all the buttons except for the top two, leaving his collarbone and neck bare. He roughly rolled up his sleeves just below his elbow. He contemplated on wearing a tie, but then decided against it. As a second thought, he grabbed a black tie and shoved it in his pocket. His trusty blue cap was left forgotten on his desk. He roughly jerked open the door and ran to the kitchen, accepting the glass of milk his older brother thrust at him. Hastily he gulped it down and managed to choke a piece of buttered bread down too. He slipped on some shoes and hopped/jumped/ran out of the doorway, shouting a goodbye to his brother.
"Oi Shishido!" Shishido turned around to see Yoshio holding up his cell phone, wallet and a pack of gum. "Oh wait!" Yoshio retreated back into the house and returned with a box of chocolates. "What's this, my little otooto?" he asked with a teasing tone.
"Shut up." Shishido retrieved his items and fit them into his pockets. He took the box of chocolates and put it inside a gift bag that had seemed to appear out of nowhere.
"Who are those for?" Oshitari motioned towards the gift bag. He nudged his friend. "It's for Choutarou-kun, isn't it?" Oshitari gave a low chuckle.
"Urusai!" Shishido scowled.
"Aw, little Shishido is giving Choutarou chocolates for Valentine's Day!" Oshitari crooned. Shishido just started walking ahead with an embarrassed look clearly written across his face.
Finally Oshitari and Shishido arrived at the carnival grounds, which was only about 15 minutes walking distance from Shishido's house. The rest of the Hyotei regulars were there, including Taki Haginousuke. Oshitari immediately went to Gakuto's side and the two started chatting animatedly. Moment's later Oshitari's hand found its way around Gakuto's head, but it looked like Oshitari was just casually draping an arm around his friend. Shishido felt a pang of jealousy. He wished he could do that so casually to his doubles partner. But he really couldn't. Choutarou was at least 3 inches taller than him and just recently, any time he got close to his younger class man, his face would go all heated up and. It had taken him a lot of courage to even suggest to Atobe-buchou to celebrate Choutarou's birthday by going to the annual carnival for Valentines Day. Shishido planned on giving Choutarou the chocolates then, but when he saw Taki, Hiyoshi and Jirou making conversation with the second-year student, he turned away and tucked the gift bag underneath his arm and reluctantly started talking with Atobe.
The carnival was full of young and old people, couples and kids. The Hyotei team had seen some other tennis regulars from their rival schools around. Shishido had seen Kamio and Shinji hanging around the roller coaster. From the looks of it, Shinji was muttering to himself and Kamio had an exasperated look on his face. A little further were Eiji, Ryoma and Momoshiro at the burger bar pigging out. If Shishido had looked to the far left, he would have seen Kurobane Harukaze kicking Amane Hikaru squarely on the head, probably for another lame joke he had made. Shishido could barely make out whom the others were, but it looked like Tezuka and Fuji who were strolling around, looking at the shops. Their group had broken up into twos. Oshitari, of course, had gone with Gakuto, Hiyoshi and Taki were making their way towards the bumper cars, Kabaji had found his older sister somewhere in the crowd, Atobe and Jirou had gone somewhere else, so it was just Choutarou and Shishido left. At first the couple went to the haunted house because Choutarou wanted to know what all the commotion was about. Shishido nearly had a major nosebleed when Choutarou jumped onto him in fright.
"D-did you see that?!" Choutarou asked, trembling.
"See what?!" Shishido wasn't concentrating on anything except for the boy who had practically wrapped himself around him.
"That ghost that looked like Fudomine's Ibu."
"..." Shishido squirmed uncomfortably.
"Are you okay?" Choutarou's concerned face searched Shishido's brown eyes. His arms were still wrapped around Shishido's neck.
"Your arms--" Shishido managed to get out.
"Oh!" Choutarou immediately took his arms from Shishido's neck. "Sorry, Shishido-san." Both their faces were flushed and a silence came over them. They continued through the house without any more occurrences.
Shishido could feel the evident cold when they exit the house. "Eto... Shishido-san?"
Shishido let out a small 'hn'.
"You look a bit cold." Choutarou hesitated. "C-can I put my arm around you?" He added quickly, "it might help you warm up." Shishido gave a little nod, his face a fiery red. Choutarou awkwardly put his arm around Shishido. Shishido could feel the heat rising in his face. Even if the rest of him was cold, his face certainly wasn't. A loud rumble emitting from Shishido's stomach broke the silence. They stopped at the next food stall they came to. Shishido must've looked pretty hungry because Choutarou offered to treat him. He ordered a cheese sandwich for Shishido and beef casserole for himself. When the orders had been placed, Shishido asked Choutarou how he knew his favourite food. The only response he got was a shrug and a shy smile that made Shishido's insides flip.
When they had finished eating and had gone on a few more rides, some resulting with a frightened Choutarou jumping onto Shishido, they decided to go for a walk around the grounds. Shishido found it hard to focus while Choutarou was animatedly chatting to him. Occasionally Choutarou would pause and stare at Shishido and ask, "Shishido-san, are you even listening?"
"Yeah," Shishido would reply. And on and on it went. After a few more minutes, Choutarou stopped dead in his tracks.
"Eh?" Shishido looked around for his doubles partner after he had realised that he was along. He walked the 10 or so metres back to Choutarou and asked if he was okay. To his surprise, Choutarou said he wasn't. Shishido panicked. "What's wrong?" Shishido tried to concentrate on the collar of Choutarou's white dress shirt instead of making eye contact. Was there something he had done wrong? Had he offended his friend in any way?
"You're wrong, that's what!" Choutarou cried. Shishido just gave him a confused stare. "You haven't been listening to a word I've said. You're not even looking at my face now!" That got Shishido's attention... to a slightly annoyed Choutarou who had the tiniest pout on his face. He continued adamantly, "you've just been saying 'yeah' to all my questions." Shishido opened his mouth to say something but the silver haired boy kept on speaking. "For goodness sake, I even asked you if you were gay and you said 'yes' to that!" Choutarou noticed a slight flush on his senpai's face, but decided to ignore it. Shishido's mouth was just mechanically opening and closing, but no sound was coming out. He must've looked quite comical because Choutarou's serious face transformed into a more lively and happy one. A smile appeared on his face and he said in a teasing tone, "close your mouth, you're attracting flies." Just as Shishido was about to retort, the ringing of a cell phone interrupted him. Choutarou digged into his pants pocket and flipped open his phone, answering politely. Shishido watched his friend's face turn to annoyed, happy, and worried then tired. When he hung up, Shishido gave him a questioning look.
"I have to be home in an hour." Choutarou explained, eyeing the sun that was rapidly nearing the horizon. Shishido took in a deep breath. He gathered up all his courage and huskily asked, "how about you come home with me?" pause. "We can drop you off instead of you having to go through the trouble of catching a train and bus."
"What did you say? I didn't hear it very well."
"Eto... never mind," Shishido was quick to say.
"Tell me, Shishido-san. Did you just ask if I wanted to come to your place and then you'd drive me home?"
"Y-yeah," Shishido stammered.
"Sure." A smile tugged on the ends of Shishido's lips.
"Well let's go then?" Without waiting for an answer he grabbed Choutarou by the wrist, dragging him through crowds of people. It wasn't until they were outside of the carnival grounds that Shishido slowed down. Choutarou took this as an opportunity to ask Shishido some questions.
"Why are we leaving now? We still have an hour."
Shishido thought he could hear some regret in the taller boy's voice, but responded curtly, "Because there is traffic later on."
Choutarou just shrugged. "You can let go of my wrist, you know." It was only then that Shishido loosened his grip on the boy's wrist.
The sun was nearly set by the time the two Hyotei regulars reached the T-junction at Shishido's house. When Shishido turned left, Choutarou stopped. "Why are we going this way, Shishido-san? Isn't your house that way?" He pointed in the opposite direction. Shishido just grunted. Shrugging, Choutarou just followed Shishido until they stopped in front of the park. He gasped in delight and awe as he saw the park bathed in purple and red shades of the sun's rays. Shishido's favourite colours; purple and red, Choutarou subconsciously noted. In the background he heard Shishido's voice. He snapped back into reality just in time to hear the end of his double's partner's apology.
"It's okay," Choutarou automatically replied, even though he had no idea in the least what Shishido was apologising for. Even though Shishido was the older of the two, Choutarou was the taller out of them. Shishido looked up into Choutarou's face only to be lost in Choutarou's rich chestnut eyes. A pregnant silence engulfed both of them until Choutarou sat down on the park bench. Shishido followed suit. Here, the younger boy started talking. "I just realised I didn't even thank you for asking Atobe-buchou for such a great birthday present." Shishido grunted. Choutarou rattled on, not at all affected by his teammate. That was, until he realised the proximity of their faces. He was about to move back, but something in Shishido's gaze stopped him.
"Happy Valentines Day, Choutarou." Shishido shyly encircled his arms around the younger boy's neck; bringing their faces closer together, and then, into a kiss. It was just a simple short kiss, but it was one that revealed their true feelings for each other. Suteki ni kiss, sugao ni kiss. Shishido moved his head back a little, but only so he could admire his friend. Choutarou was wearing black pants and a white collared dress shirt with long sleeves buttoned up at the wrists, the white contrasting with the deep red of his face. The top button was undone, revealing the tanned skin of his collarbone and his neck. A satin black tie was done up, hanging loosely from around his neck. "Here," Shishido brought out the chocolates and gave them to Choutarou. "Belgium. Your favourites." Choutarou undid the silver ribbon and then carefully removed the luminous red wrapping. He put the box of Belgium chocolates aside. A smile played on his lips as he opened the card that read, 'Happy Valentines Day'. A few words expressing Shishido's thanks was scrawled down the bottom. Following that was Choutarou's name written neatly in kanji with Shishido's name written beneath it. Choutarou looked a bit embarrassed, but then again, Shishido was too.
"Shishido," Choutarou whispered a whisper so quiet that it sounded almost seductive. Shishido felt the area around his heart tighten as he heard his name being said without and an honorific. "It is my birthday too, you know." Choutarou leaned in closer, narrowing the gap between the two, until their faces were just mere millimetres away from each other.
"Hoi hoi!" A familiar shout surprised the couple.
"This is better than any romance movie I've seen!" Oshitari's low voice chimed in with his double's partner's shouts. They were standing there, Oshitari's arm possessively around Gakuto's waist. They had obviously been spying on them, judging by the sly grin that adorned their faces.
Shishido grinned wickedly against Choutarou's lips as he initiated another kiss. Shishido tilted his head, deepening the kiss between the two. Otona no aji ne. Shishido's lips were in Choutarou's hair, nibbling on his ear, while Choutarou felt himself holding onto Shishido for all he was worth. Finally they broke apart, both faces a distinct red, but it felt so right, being in each other's arms. Valentines Day kiss.
-The Next Valentines Day-
Choutarou carefully unwrapped the silver wrapping of the box. It was the exact same gift Shishido had given him last year for Valentines Day, except with different wrapping and ribbon. Choutarou lowered his eyelids as he bent in towards his boyfriend for a kiss. Ever since that Valentines Day the mutual bond between the two had just been growing stronger. Choutarou's feelings for Shishido would never burn out. Ano hi kawa yo koi no chocololate.
For a fleeting moment, Choutarou huskily whispered against Shishido's lips, "koi no kinebi." An anniversary of our love.
Sealed by a Valentine Kiss.
otooto little brother
-kun an honorific used for boys
urusai be quiet
-buchou an honorific used for captains
-san an honorific literally translated into miss/missus/mister
senpai someone in a higher school grade than you, or with more life experience
suteki ni kiss, sugao ni kiss a lovely kiss, an honest kiss
otona no aji ne an adult taste
koi no kinebi an anniversary of our love
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