A Kiyota fic!! Dedicated to people who asked me for it. And oh yeah! To sLL, who will celebrate or has celebrated his or her birthday. Happy birthday or happy belated birthday!!

            "And…" Shouri Hanataka murmured expectantly as the train pulled into the station. "I am RIGHT!!" She turned to her mother. "Ten thousand yen please."

        Mrs. Hanataka frowned and peered one more time through the window at the waiting group of family. "I object," she informed her daughter. "I absolutely object."

        Shouri crossed her arms over her chest. "I told you Jura wouldn't be here to pick us up, didn't I? Who asked you to insist against me?"

        "I'm your mother, Shouri."

        "Yes, mom. I know. I've known for the last fifteen years of my life. But a bet's a bet."

        "You planned this," her mother accused relentlessly as she fished out her fat purse. "You must've called Jura sometime during the journey and told her not to come."

        Shouri held out a hand. "Ten thousand," she insisted. "Down to the very last yen."

        "Jura always comes." Mrs. Hanataka went on. "She's always here waiting at the station whenever we return from a trip or a visit."

        "Always expect the unexpected." Shouri said lightly, though she was surprised too. Something must've happened, she assured herself. Probably Jura got stuck in the bathroom again or dropped into a worker's hole somewhere or accidentally got distracted by a passing ice cream truck.

        Her mother frowned again. "How do I know what to expect if I don't know what's expected and unexpected? What is expected and unexpected, anyway? Who can say exactly what human beings expect and don't expect?"

        Shouri closed her eyes. "Never mind," she muttered, standing up. "You can keep your ten thousand yen and philosophy questions to yourself."

        Mrs. Hanataka laughed delightedly, having won the mouth-match. She took out a ten thousand yen note and slipped it in Shouri's hand. "Just joking, Shouri," she chuckled. "Just joking and giving you some education."

        Shouri smiled wryly. "Right."

        She hadn't even stepped out of the train when her cousin, Jo, lunged at her. "Welcome back! Welcome back! Welcome back to Kanagawa!" Her aunt and uncle watched on in amusement.

        Shouri faked a surprised look amidst the confetti Jo was throwing into her eyes and nostrils. "Kanagawa? Mom, we got off at the wrong station."

        "How are you, Shouri?" her aunt asked, nudging Jo away. "How's your injury?"

        Shouri flexed her knee. "It's movable," she forced a smile. "At least I can still kick your daughters when they deserve a powerful one!"

        Mrs. Hanataka looked at Jo. "I thought you were already working, Jo," she commented. "How come you still dress in skirts with Doraemon on it?" She pointed at the huge blue-and-white face of the cartoon character.

        Jo flushed and pretended she missed the question. "You all must be famished!" she said extravagantly. "After the strenuous journey from across the country, and arriving in the laps of your beloved family members, you must be excited to adjourn back to our home and rest in the kingly bed sheets and pillows made for royalty!"

        Shouri looked at her mother. "This is the number one reason why I will never become a poet," she said seriously. "It affects the way you talk."

        "I??" Jo fluttered her eyelashes. "I? Poet? The maiden doth knowest how to flatter." She bent down and kissed her cousin on the cheek before pulling her into a surprise bear hug.

        Shouri looked pained. "Help."

        Standing for the tenth minute and knocking for the fifteenth time, Shouri glared at the wooden door in front of her. "What are you doing in there, Jura??" she yelled. "I've returned, and you haven't even shown your face to me yet. What happened? Did you grow a dozen pimples overnight?"

        "No."

        "You mean there's more than a dozen??"

        The was a sound of a pillow hitting the door and Jo came running up the stairs, dressed for outdoors. "Leave her alone, Shouri," she advised, talking normally now. "She's depressed."

        Shouri raised an eyebrow. "Why?"

        Jo shrugged her shoulders. "She didn't exactly write an essay explaining the causes. She's been locking herself in her room and muttering names and words, something like: Heartbreak, life, over, Kiyota, no hope, break up, Pooch, sleep together." Jo winked. "If it makes sense to you, then you should go into those word games on TV."

        Shouri snorted. "Of course it makes sense," she said dismissively. "I worked it out from the first word you mentioned."

        "Prithee, do tell me."

        "Your darling sister is suffering from a disastrous heartbreak, and is convinced that her life is over. The person who did this to her is called Kiyota, and she believes there is no hope left after their break-up because he has a new girl named Pooch and they have slept together."

         "Ah." Jo lowered her head sympathetically and muttered a few made-up prayers. "She's been mooning over that Kiyota since January. Come, let us, Shouri, pray for the sensibility of my darling sister. May she come out of that room no worse than when she went in."

        Shouri nodded. "Amen."

        The door whizzed open and Jura poked her angry head out. "Stop it, you two!" she screamed. "It's not funny!" She burst crying.

        Jo quickly went back for the stairs. "I sense a maiden in distress," she said as she went down. "And at the same time, I sense a distant smell of apple pies wafting from the kitchen. Therefore, I bestow the honour of cheering my sister up to the ever reliable Shouri."

        Shouri rolled her eyes and hugged Jura comfortingly. "Well now, a girl goes off for two months and comes back, only to find all this. Honestly, Jura, haven't I always told you that guys are the bane of the society?" She looked down at her cousin and then released a whistle. "Oh boy, he did hurt you a lot, didn't he?"

        Jura sniffed and shook her head.

        "Don't be modest," Shouri reprimanded her. "Of course he hurt you a lot. And of course, we're not going to let him get away with that, are we? Nobody hurts a Hanataka and gets away with it!"

        Jura snorted. "I'm a Wanaku."

        "Yeah, well, your mom's Hanataka, so that makes you half-Hanataka." Shouri took a deep breath. "Nobody hurts a Hanataka and a half-Hanataka and gets away with it!" she declared. "Tell me, what did he do to you?"

        "Heartbreak," Jura murmured. "Life, over, Kiyota, no hope, break up, Pooch, sleep together."

        "Thanks, that's a fat lot of help."

        Jura wiped a tear away. "Class 4. Kainan basketballer." Her eyes turned dreamy. "Gorgeous, talented, brave –"

        "All right. I know what to do already."

        "  - popular, to-die-for, athletic –"

        "I said, all right!"

        " – cool, smooth, demanding –"

        Shouri pushed Jura back into her room and firmly shut the door close.  What did the guy do to her cousin?? Jura was far from the stupid idiot that she was normally was. Now, she was even stupider and more idiotic.

        "It must be stopped."  She told Jura through the keyhole. "Don't worry, Jura. I understand perfectly what he did to you, and I'll make sure you get the revenge you deserve. As a matter of fact, right tomorrow morning, as soon as I get my feet back to Kainan High, the first thing I'll do is seek him out and bash him for you."

        " – amazing, super, wonderful –"

        "Hey, are you listening?"

        " – unbelievable, ace, lady-killer –"

        Shouri stomped back to the living room. "She didn't even ask about my injury or treatment."

        "How was your treatment?" the principal of Kainandai High asked curiously.

        Shouri shrugged. "Painful. They made me walk at least five kilometres everyday." She took the admittance paper he gave her. "All in all, I'm glad to be back. I've already missed two months of school. God knows how I'll catch up."

        "Terrible," the principal agreed. "It's a shame the accident happened right after the first day of school."

        Shouri gave a small smile. "Um, well, yeah."

"Can you still perform?"

The smile disappeared. "I – I don't know. I mean, well…" she took a deep breath. "No. No, I can't. Not anymore." No matter how many times she said it, it still poked a hole inside her. Shouri sighed.

The principal looked at her quietly with a sad and sympathetic little face.

She hastily picked her bag up. "I'll go now."

        He nodded, turning back to the load of papers on his desk. "Class starts in twenty minutes. Don't be late."

        "Hmm," she walked down the corridor in pretence of heading for her class, but then turned around another corridor and rushed for the gym. She'd heard the basketball team took at least half-an-hour for practice before school began every day. And today, she was going to cut Nobunama Kiyota's session short.

        When she arrived, another four groups of students (mostly girls) were already there, watching adoringly. Surprised and a little amused, Shouri decided to get right down to business. She approached a fellow Year 1 girl. "Hello. Can you tell me which one's Nobunama Kiyota?"

        "Nobunaga." The girl said primly.

        "Oh. Sorry. Nobunaga."

        The girl narrowed her eyes. "Do I know you?"

        Shouri wondered what that had to do with Kiyota. "I don't know. You don't seem to, so I guess not." She waved a hand. "So, which one is he?"

        "I think I've seen you before." The girl mused, scratching her chin thoughtfully. "Are you in Class 3?" her eyes narrowed. "Those eyes … you're not Shouri Hanataka, are you?? You can't be. I thought she was dead."

        Shouri raised an eyebrow. "Uh, no. I'm not dead yet."

        "I knew it," the girl self-congratulated. "I knew it was you. It's those eyes, see. People were saying how it was that Shouri Hanataka had such huge eyes that it's the only thing you see on her face."

        Shouri didn't know how to react, so she simply stared. "Oh. Okay." She scowled then. "Actually, I also have a nose and a mouth on my face. But that's besides the point here. Can you please point out Kiyota to me?"

        "Why?"

        The suspicious tone puzzled her. "Um, never mind. I'll just go ask somebody else –"

        There was sudden loud bang at the far end of the court, cutting Shouri off curtly. A boy around her age was triumphantly hanging on to the red hoop, in a way that reminded her of monkeys monkeying around in the zoo. Apparently, he'd just made a successful shot and wanted the whole world to know.

        "Ah!" the girl beside Shouri gasped tragically. "I missed it!"

        Shouri studied the boy. Long, messy hair, well-shaped nose, strong cheekbones and a wide, generous mouth. The words Jura had chanted the day before ran through her head one more time. What was it that she said? Gorgeous, talented, brave, popular, to-die-for, athletic… etc. Surprised at the accurateness of her cousin's judging, she rocked back on her heel. "That's him," she answered her own question, almost admiringly.

        The girl she was speaking to had already rushed to the others to query about the shot – darn, what do they call it? Slam punk? Slam bunk?

        Snapping herself back to reality, and reminding herself of the well thought-up speech she'd painfully dictated, she strode boldly over to the boy Kiyota who was struggling with the cap of his bottle and firmly placed herself in front of him.

        He looked up in surprise, which then turned into an easy smile. "Hi, sweetheart. Can I help you?"

        A lady-killer, all right. Poor Jura. "Actually," she began sweetly, matching the smile on his face. "I just came here to tell you that –"

        "Yeah, I know the dunk there was awesome." He winked. "That's not the first time I did that, darling, and you can be sure that's not the last time I'll do it either."

        The smile on Shouri's face cracked slightly. "No, actually –"

        "Oh, don't worry. You don't have to tell me how well I play basketball." He thought about it. "Actually, why don't you tell me how well I play basketball? It won't hurt to get a new praise."

        Shouri's smile had completely vanished. "I came here to tell you that you're a PIG." She screamed the last word, causing Kiyota to stare at her with dotted eyes. (' _') "How DARE you toy around with my cousin, Jura!"

        He blinked. "Jura?"

        "Oh, that's just great. You've even forgotten all about her! What kind of a barbarian are you? I mean, how could you even think of hurting Jura's feelings? Are you too busy caring for yourself that you can't even spare some for other people??" She pointed a finger in his face. "And who with a right mind would go out with someone named Pooch?"

"Pooch?"

 "That's right. Pooch. I'm glad you can still hear. How DARE you sleep with her and destroy my cousin into pieces until she was practically incapable of remembering me?? And you're not even fully sixteen! You should be arrested for underage sex or something!""

        "Huh??"

        Shouri decided he was a bigheaded, small-brained idiot worthy of being kicked down the garbage chute. "Don't you ever do what you did to my cousin ever again to anyone else. Next time, think about how you'll feel if someone two-timed you behind your back." With a seething glare, she retreated and stomped away, disappointed at the lame fight. She'd expected him to defend himself with lies so she could easily and successfully tear those lies down and expose the real him, but he'd just gaped at her and repeated snatches of words.

        Idiot. What a terrible debater he'd make.

        Kiyota was still frozen with the bottle about to enter his mouth. Everybody in the gym was staring at him, and then at the girl, and then back at him with puzzled looks. The only thing he could comprehend right now was the fact that the stranger had just managed to humiliate him beyond repair in less than two minutes.

        Jin came up to him, trying to hide a smile. (-_-) "Who's that?"

        "I don't know," Kiyota muttered dazedly.   

        "Who's Jura?"

        "No idea."

        "And who's Pooch?"

        Kiyota looked at Jin. "My dog."

Sorry – that was really long, wasn't it? Hope it didn't bore the eyes out of your sockets! Ha ha!