Here is the one-shot I promised in my other fic ('Kuroko Tetsuya was...' - go check it out if you want) it can be read as a sequel to the other or a stand-alone either way.

It turns out, I really like writing Hanamiya xD not that I'm complaining, he's my problematic fave all the way. But this is definitely my longest one-shot. Ever.

Anyway, I love the way this turned out, and hope you do too!

I apologise if characters are a lil OOC~!

Hanamiya was... bored.

That was the only explanation he could find for why he was currently perched opposite the last person on Earth he would've pictured himself playing with, a shogi board spread between them, impassive blue eyes boring into his own. Kuroko Tetsuya was, for lack of a better word, an anomaly. Hanamiya remembered the match between them, how much he had hated the pale teen then, how much he had wanted to crush him and watch him fail as he crushed his foolish dreams into smithereens, and how, even in the face of utter defeat, the other had spouted nonsense about the dreams and hopes of his senpais and how Hanamiya should not get in the way -

Pathetic, Hanamiya remembered thinking, truly pitiful; how someone like that could call themselves a basketball player, it was shameful. He wasn't anywhere near bloodthirsty enough.

Now, staring back into those empty blue eyes that he had despised so, Hanamiya found himself in the rare scenario where he had to reconsider his previous opinion of the boy.

Off-court, the bluenette was not spouting any of the nonsense that had made Hanamiya's blood boil with its idyllic idiocy. No, he was sat quietly, the shogi board before him providing no obvious openings which Hanamiya could exploit and laugh at, staring at his opponent with the same maddeningly expressionless face, and the Uncrowned King made it his personal goal for the night to break that façade.

To his surprise, that strategy backfired as the bluenette met each of his spiteful comments and mocking remarks with one of his own, delivered in perfect deadpan, his little feathers still annoyingly unruffled. But Hanamiya had always liked a challenge.

He waited till the other had lifted a hand to move one of the pieces during his turn and delivered another jeer. "Are you and Imayoshi fucking?" it was only because he had his eyes trained on the bluenette that he didn't miss the small spasm of his hand that nearly knocked over one of the pieces, but whether it was at the accusation or the profanity, Hanamiya could not guess. To his utter irritation, the other regained his composure too fast for him to fully enjoy the reaction.

"Why ask? Are you jealous, Hanamiya-kun?" the bluenette raised his eyes to meet his own, a challenging glint in the previously expressionless orbs. Ah, so he had caught on to the game after all. Hanamiya snorted, crossing his arms, the game temporarily forgotten, slipping into a persona he thought would work best with the icy teen.

"Why, I'm merely looking out for my kouhai. I know Shouichi can be very... demanding." he averted his eyes, not trying to hide the not-so-subtle implication behind his words. Something that sounded suspiciously like a snort escaped the bluenette, but it was so quick that Hanamiya could not be sure.

Instead, Kuroko fired back, the corner of his lips turning up ever so slightly. "Mhmm, it sounds like you're speaking from experience, Hanamiya-kun." he murmured, blue eyes boring into Hanamiya's own grey ones, not even trying to hide his amusement this time.

Hanamiya had to physically restrain himself from spluttering. That little shit-! suddenly, he realised the table on which the board was laid was shaking slightly and as he raised his eyes to the bluenette, he realised the kid was shaking with supressed laughter. Hanamiya let a smirk grace his face, pleasantly surprised. He had expected a few things from the bluenette, but him being well-versed in the art of sexual innuendos had not been one of them.

As his laughter subsided, Kuroko was back to his stoic self. "How about we get back to the game, hm, Hanamiya-kun?" he murmured, focusing again on the shogi board before them.

Ah, the game. Hanamiya thought back to how he had even ended up in his current predicament.

"Oi, Shouichi, I brought booze!" he yelled into the empty hallway, having let himself into the other's house when he realised the door was open, snorting at the other's carelessness. It wasn't his first time in Imayoshi's house, so he had no qualms about throwing his jacket to the side and shucking his shoes, and he waited for a reply.

"We're upstairs, Makoto-chan!" came the other's voice, muffled by the walls separating them. We? Hanamiya thought suspiciously, Imayoshi having forgotten to mention that particular detail when he invited him over 'for old times' sake' as he'd called it. Still, the Kirisaki Daiichi captain made his way upstairs, bottle of sake held nimbly in one hand as he climbed the narrow stairs-o'-doom that led to the living room in Shouichi's tiny apartment. As he walked into the living room, he came across a curious sight - Imayoshi was sat by the kotatsu, a shogi board spread on top, yet Hanamiya could find no other person in the room that could justify Imayoshi saying 'we'.

"Got lonely and decided to start without me, Shouichi?" he mocked, moving to sit opposite the infuriating teen. At the other's smirk, he scowled, moving to sit down before-

"Hello." he looked down to where he'd been about to sit and didn't jump, he most definitely did not jump, fuck you Imayoshi-! and impassive blue eyes gazed unerringly back at him, face expressionless save for the corner of his lips quirking slightly downwards, apparently not appreciating the fact that he'd nearly been sat on. Hanamiya snarled.

"What the fuck are you doing here?" he yelled indignantly before turning to Imayoshi, "And you! Next time you decide to involve me in your fucking mind games without telling me, I will make you into shoes!" he raged, and while Imayoshi was positively cackling, the fucking bluenette would not stop staring at him, a tiny frown of displeasure pulling at his brow, mouth opening and; "You should not swear so much, Hanamiya-san. It's unbecoming." and Hanamiya was certain that if Imayoshi had been anybody else, he would've fallen out of his seat from how much he was shaking.

"The fuck did you say?" he snarled, glaring at the bluenette, unable to believe the kid's gall. He lowered himself till he was right close and personal with the teen, revelling in how his frown deepened, even if he didn't move back. "Fuck basketball. I'll break you right here, right now." he murmured, the tone of the threat and the proximity in which it was delivered bordering on intimate, even if the words were anything but.

"Mou, mou, Makoto-chan, stop being so hostile towards Tetsuya-kun." Imayoshi drawled amusedly, having finally righted himself. "I invited him over because I wanted my two favourite kouhai to get along."

Hanamiya scowled, straightening up again. "Well, you can get along without me then. I'm getting the fuck out of here." and just as he was about to turn on his heel and leave, his gaze fell on the shogi board, and his eyes widened out of their own volition as he appraised the situation. "Shouichi," he began, a hint of a laugh threatening to burst out of his throat. "are you... losing?" he snorted, eyes flickering between the bespectacled teen and the blue haired menace.

Imayoshi's eyes flickered to his own, and he wondered what the other found there, because a smirk made its way onto his face as he admitted, "It appears so." before he moved his pawn in a way that niggled at the back of Hanamiya's mind but he chose to ignore it for the time being.

Kuroko sighed, though there was a small smile on his face. "Check, Shouichi-kun." though surprised at the familiar way the kid referred to the Touou captain, he tried not to show it, and appraised the board again.

"Don't you mean checkmate?" he spoke before he could stop himself, pointing to the position of Kuroko's rook, which the bluenette must've forgotten about, judging by his quiet 'huh'. "It appears that Hanamiya-san is correct. Apologies, Shouichi-kun." he offered blandly.

Hanamiya snorted. "How the fuck did you lose to him, Shouichi?" he asked. Imayoshi merely chuckled and congratulated Kuroko on his win. "Tetsuya-kun is rather good at this. I told you, he plays like you." Hanamiya scowled again, but as he turned to look at the board in more detail, he saw that Imayoshi was not wrong; some of the traps and majority of the pawns that remained were set in a very similar formation to how his own often ended up, and he appraised the bluenette in a new light, gracelessly plopping down where Imayoshi had been sat moments before. "Play with me." he demanded, leaving no room for argument.

Kuroko stared at the other teen for a few seconds, trying to decide whether he should agree or not, but Imayoshi's words as well as his last play was pulling incessantly at his mind, so he finally succumbed. "Alright." he nodded in acquiesce and set up the pieces again.

Hanamiya smirked.

Sighing, he focused on the game, though if he was being honest, he was a lot more interested in seeing how much he could get away with before the other snapped or lost that impassive façade. He managed to unknowingly force it during their game, but that was with anger, now it was with not-so-innocent banter, and he was curious what other ways there were, and how long they took to make a dent in the mask. Hanamiya had always been a meticulous person; give him something to do and he'd wring it dry til there was nothing left, and even then sometimes he wasn't fully satisfied. He knew that, after this, it was likely he wouldn't see the bluenette again unless it was on a basketball court, and he still remembered how infuriating he'd been in that context, and he was certain that the current curiosity would not last if he were to meet him on a court; he'd want to crush and stamp and spit on the other's idyllic portrayal of basketball. So, he took a gamble.

"I propose a bet." he broke the (oddly comfortable) silence that settled between them, only speaking when the bluenette's attention was solely on him. "Winner gets loser to do what he wants." he smirked as the other's eyes widened, surprised, but considering.

"Alright. And what do you want, Hanamiya-kun?" Kuroko asked, and oh, what an open-ended question that was, how easy it would be to make it dirty, to knock the other's feet from under him with a lewd proposition and watch him fumble to try and regain his footing on their verbal battlefield. Too easy.

"For one, stop being so fucking formal. It's not normal." he snorted. Kuroko nodded, accepting his demand, and seemed to think about his own.

"If I win, I would like it if Hanamiya-kun didn't swear as much. It's a disgusting habit." Hanamiya nearly gaped at the outrageous request, and the deadpan with which it was delivered.

"What are you, a monk?" he mocked, snorting. "And I told you to stop being so goddamn formal." at that, Kuroko's lips twitched into something that could only be called a smirk.

"Ah, but you haven't won yet, Hanamiya-kun."

But he did, in the end, though it was the closest scrape he had experienced in a while; their styles of play really were similar and because of that, Kuroko knew not to fall for some of the traps he'd set up, knowing that they were merely distractions. The bluenette was frowning at the board, not looking bitter about losing, but contemplative.

"I'm not playing my best today..." he murmured, more to himself than to Hanamiya. "Ano, Han- Makoto-kun," he corrected, earning a pleased smirk from the other. "Would you have played me if you hadn't seen me win against Shouichi-kun?"

Hanamiya blinked, surprised by the question. "No, I wouldn't have." he stated bluntly. He had been about to leave before he saw the state of the board, and the niggling feeling that he'd previously dismissed came back full force.

"No, I didn't think you would have." the bluenette agreed. "It's just... Shouichi-kun's last move. It was stupid. He must've seen the bishop that was in the corner." Hanamiya narrowed his eyes at the same time as Kuroko's widened; they both reached the same conclusion.

Makoto scowled. "What a fucking annoying, manipulative, megane bastard." he hissed, not too pleased to realise that Imayoshi had thrown the fucking game so him and shadow boy would play together. To his surprise, said shadow boy only nodded, not bothering to reprimand him on his foul language, and a weird glint entered his eyes.

"I disliked your style of play, but what I disliked even more about you was the fact that you underestimated me. I hate when people do that." that was probably the most passionate Hanamiya had heard Kuroko speak the entire night. "Shouichi-kun should know better than that."

An idea formed in Makoto's mind, and he allowed the most sadistic, shit-eating grin he could manage to form on his lips. "Ne, Kuroko-kun," he started innocently. "What do you say we give him a little surprise? In thanks for setting us up for such a pleasant game?"

To his surprise, Kuroko nodded, a mischievous glint in his eyes. "What do you have planned?"

Hanamiya was nearly pissing himself, making sure to take as many photos as he could before his cover was inevitably blown.

After their discovery of 'Imayoshi is even more of a manipulative shit than we thought', they had sat and schemed together, Makoto's natural sadism aided by the beauty of sake (he was still not over Kuroko's polite rejection of his offer to share - what sane 16 year old doesn't drink?) and Kuroko piping in with surprisingly sly ideas every once in a while, occasionally startling a surprised snort from Makoto at the particularly evil ones. Eventually, they had settled on something that seemed tame, but, with the right angle and some photoshop could very nearly ruin Imayoshi; a thought that sent pleasant tingles down Hanamiya's spine. Even if the Touou Captain had been the one to uncover Kuroko's sly nature, Hanamiya was certain that he never expected for it to be directed at him, and Kuroko's impassiveness meant that he was surprisingly good at keeping a stoic face, even in awkward situations. Besides, Imayoshi was a tsundere at heart, even if he would deny it to the very day of his death.

That's how they arrived at their current predicament; Kuroko perched very nearly on Imayoshi's lap, head resting on the other's shoulder, murmuring about he was tired and upset that 'Shouichi-kun' had just up and left him with the 'most unpleasant person on the planet' (that was Makoto's idea, though he had to admit, Kuroko was a lot better at acting than he gave him credit for) and the more he spoke, the more his eyes drooped and the more slurred his speech became, til he slowly slid down Imayoshi's chest and landed with his head pillowed on the bespectacled teen's lap, face turned towards his navel. Hanamiya stifled a snort at how he could almost see the cogs turning in Imayoshi's head, fighting between staying in the awkward position or shaking the other awake; a battle between the 'tsun-tsun' and the 'dere-dere' sides. In the end, the 'dere-dere' won out, and the panic faded slightly from Imayoshi's face. Kuroko, who must've felt the other's muscles relax, took that as his cue to snuffle sleepily and shuffle closer, cheek pressing against the crotch of Imayoshi's sweatpants. Hanamiya choked on a laugh at Imayoshi's renewed fluster and kept snapping pictures, shifting slightly for a more incriminating angle. The Touou Captain's hand spasmed around the TV remote, the other clutching at the sofa, and the look on the teen's face provided the most incriminating photo Hanamiya could've hoped for.

Just photoshop the light blue into something less obvious and it'll look like the presumably asexual, deeply feared Captain is indulging in the most carnal activities of all. Hanamiya thought, snorting. Oh, how the mighty fall.

And then Kuroko shifted and Imayoshi's face went from 'frozen constipation' to 'I'm gonna shit myself at an alarming velocity' and Hanamiya could not hold it back anymore; he burst out laughing, full body quaking laughs that startled Imayoshi into nearly jumping off the sofa and causing Kuroko to fall off.

"Ah, I'm sorry Tetsuya, but you should've seen the look on his face!" Hanamiya managed to choke out between chuckles. The bluenette got up off Imayoshi's lap, brushing off imaginary dust as he straightened up, unfazed. "About time, Makoto-kun. I was starting to think you forgot about what the actual aim of this was."

Imayoshi stared from one to the other, for once at a loss of words, though he had a suspicion that he had just been conned. Kuroko, meeting his gaze, narrowed his eyes. "You should know better than to throw the game, Shouichi-kun. You know I go to great lengths with those who underestimate me." the bluenette murmured, deceptively sweetly. "And it would do you well to remember that there is no worse enemy that the shadow always behind you." he added vaguely.

Hanamiya snorted. "I don't know where you found him, Shouichi, but I like him."

The Touou Captain was struck with the thought that he deeply regretted his decision to introduce the two to each other. It seemed as if his third prediction had been correct; they really were going to team up and ruin everyone else.

Starting with him.

After that first meeting, Hanamiya and Kuroko had, to Imayoshi's horror, traded numbers, and stayed in contact. Starting hesitantly, unsure what to say or text, Kuroko would often take his phone out then put it back in his pocket, convinced that the other would think him stupid. After a few days, Hanamiya sent him the picture, completed with photoshopped colour of Kuroko's hair into a less conspicuous dark brown, and honestly, Hanamiya should either become a photographer or a professional blackmailer, because even Kuroko could appreciate meticulous work when he saw it. On a whim, he went into a grocers store and bought a 100% cocoa chocolate bar and texted Hanamiya the picture with the caption 'for you, for our next game as a thank you for being an evil genius' which was odd in itself, and when coupled with who had written it and who would be receiving it, Kuroko was 90% certain they deserve their own sitcom.

When Hanamiya merely responded with 'when are you free?' he smiled and counted his momentary out of character act a success.

Though few and far between, whenever he did receive texts from Hanamiya, it always seemed to make to make his day more interesting. One particular day was after a grueling training session as Riko had been in a particularly bad mood. Luckily, it was finally over and Kuroko was grabbing his bag and getting ready to leave when his phone vibrated.

-I'm going to kill my teammates.

Chuckling inwardly, Kuroko replied.

-That's a felony, Makoto-kun. You'll be sent to prison.

-At least it'll be away from those fucktards. came the instantaneous reply. If there was one thing Kuroko had to give Hanamiya, it was the other's creativity with insults.

-You can't play basketball in prison - he tried to argue

-Fuck basketball

Kuroko sighed, trying a different angle -You won't get 100% chocolate in prison

-I'll get one of the idiots to bring it to me.

-Won't they all be dead though?

-Fine I'll get you to bring them to me

-I'm not your girlfriend, Makoto-kun, nor your slave

-You wouldn't visit me in prison? I'm hurt, Tetsuya.

-I wouldn't visit if you got sent there because of your own idiocy, no. And you being hurt would require you having feelings that could be hurt, and I thought genius psychopaths lacked those?

-You consider me a psychopath? Why, Tetsuya, I'm flattered.

-You're crazy

-And you're associating with the crazy, so doesn't that make you crazy too?

-I'm merely making sure a genius psychopath doesn't become a murderous genius psychopath. If anything, I'm a saint.

-Is that you or your ego talking?

-Is that you or your wounded pride talking?

-Touché. Well, thanks to you they live to tell another day. You're well on your way to sainthood, shadow boy.

-Call me shadow boy again and I'll sic all the pigeons heaven has on offer on you.

-Ooh aggressive! Didn't know you had it in you!

Before he could reply, another text came - got to go Hara got chewing gum stuck in his hair again wtf

Kuroko snorted, attracting the attention of Kagami beside him. Somehow during his text war with Hanamiya they had managed to leave the sports hall and were already nearly half way to his house.

"You alright, Kuroko?" the redhead asked worriedly (he'd never seen Kuroko do something as undignified as snort. Usually it was either a smile or a quiet chuckle, but never a snort)

"Hai, Kagami-kun. Why ask?" the bluenette replied, looking up at Kagami in curiosity. Deciding not to elaborate on his sudden bout of worry, Kagami quickly changed the subject.

"Who were you texting? You were nearly beaming at your phone." he justified as the shadow looked at him with eyes that seemed to indignantly scream 'that's private, Kagami-kun!'. If eyes could scream. Yeah.

"I was convincing an acquaintance of mine that committing a felony would be a bad idea." Kuroko replied nonplussed, looking back curiously when the redhead beside him stopped walking.

Kagami gaped. "You should seriously stop with the deadpan, you idiot! I can't tell if you're pulling my leg or not when you're spouting nonsense like that with that face!" he yelled, indignant.

Kuroko blinked owlishly at him. "Why would Kagami-kun think I'm telling anything other than the truth? And what's wrong with my face?" he questioned curiously.

The taller teen spluttered, trying to find an explanation. "Who laughs about felony?!" was what he finally came up with.

"I wasn't laughing about the felony itself, I was laughing at their reasons for it." he explained, careful to use gender-neutral pronouns; he was not quite ready to reveal the identity of his mystery not-friend, and he was certain that the assumption of 'girlfriend' would come up in the future. So he kept walking, though struggling to keep his expressionless mask in place at the defeated look on Kagami's face; he looked like a 6'5" kicked puppy.

"Stop pouting, Kagami-kun, you look like an overgrown five year old." he announced, startling the redhead before he registered the meaning of his words and nearly jumped at him. "Why you lil-!"

"We're at my house. See you tomorrow, Kagami-kun." Kuroko replied, sneaking away and closing the door behind him, chuckling at the indignant grumbles of the redhead as he walked away.

Still, a certain thought would not go away; "You were nearly beaming at your phone." - had he been? For once, he could not tell for certain. Texting in general was something Kuroko did not do very often unless it was with Ogiwara-kun or his old teammates, but texting Hanamiya had felt easy. Fun, even. And he could not help noting how much more relaxed the other appeared over the phone, less concerned with keeping up the image of the sadistic Bad Boy once Kuroko had gotten him sidetracked from his original reason for texting.

Kuroko found he rather liked that version of Hanamiya.

"That was a stupid move." Hanamiya remarked casually, fingers dancing over the rim of his sake cup as he considered his next move.

"Be quiet and play, Makoto-kun." Kuroko replied distractedly, a tiny scowl pulling at his mouth as he regarded the board and the no-escape trap he'd apparently fallen in. His gaze fell on the nearly half empty bottle of sake by the table and his scowl grew. "And stop drinking so much; you'll give yourself alcohol poisoning."

"You're being even more of a prude than usual, Tetsuya." the other mocked, eyes glimmering at the chance of another verbal showdown. "What's got your panties in a twist?" he crooned.

Kuroko's scowl grew fiercer than Hanamiya had seen before. "Makoto-kun is playing dirty even in shogi and I don't like it." he murmured, aware of how petulant he sounded even to his own ears. Hanamiya laughed.

"'Playing dirty'?" he asked, tone coloured with faux disbelief. "This is exactly the same style with which you're playing, just upped another two levels." he ignored the other's deadpan 'are you kidding' look that the bluenette sent him. "And stop commenting on my alcohol intake - you sound like my grandmother." his eyes flickered over to the bottle as an idea formed in his head. It was still almost half full... "In fact, since we haven't placed our bets yet, here's mine; if I win this game, during the next one you have to take a shot of sake for every piece that I take!" at the other's incredulous gaze, he laughed. "C'mon, school doesn't start for another week, it's Friday, I don't feel like murdering anyone at the moment; have some fun, shadow boy! Live a little!" he prompted, alcohol making him oddly (endearingly) languid.

The bluenette gaped. "That's ridiculous, Makoto-kun!"

Hanamiya merely smirked, gaze back to the intensity of a serpent preparing to strike; after three months since meeting, he'd learnt how to push the icy bluenette's buttons. "Are you giving up?" he mocked, getting real close to the other's face. As always, it worked like a charm and Kuroko's eyes hardened. "Fine. But if I win, Makoto-kun has to walk down the middle of the road singing 'I will survive' at the top of his lungs. Naked." now it was Hanamiya's turn to gape incredulously. If someone had told him after their game at the Winter Cup qualifiers that Seirin's shadow boy had a single nasty bone in his body, he'd have laughed in their face. Now, after his and Imayoshi's joint efforts, the creativity of the bluenette's bets and their occasional viciousness surprised even him. But this whole tentative friendship fiasco had begun because Makoto liked a challenge, and he was most definitely not about to stop now.

"Alright, you're on, shadow boy." he smirked at the dirty look the other threw him and cackled as the bluenette slammed the piece on the table with clearly excessive force on his next go.

Hanamiya still won. Naturally.

As they had agreed on a 'best of three games' for that particular evening, the start of the second game had Kuroko glaring at the other with all the hatred he could muster.

"I really hate you sometimes, Makoto-kun." he grumbled when the other took his first piece and dangled a sake cup in front of his face like some mockery of an offering. He snatched it from the laughing teen's grasp and eyed the contents wearily, having never tried alcohol before.

"Here, Tetsuya, you do it like this!" Hanamiya teased, grabbing his own cup and downing the contents like an experienced alcoholic. Kuroko regarded him disdainfully and carefully brought the cup to his lips, deciding to just tip it over and get it over and done with.

He choked.

Hanamiya burst out laughing.

He'd heard others describe alcohol as 'burning' but it didn't come close to how the liquid seemed to almost corrode his throat away on its way down, leaving everything behind feeling like it was on fire.

"I really hate you." he managed to choke out in between gasps for air. But once the initial shock wore off, he could not deny that it left a pleasant, tingly feeling in its wake that made him warm from the inside.

"Feels good afterwards, doesn't it?" Hanamiya asked, voice softer than Kuroko had ever heard it before, so he just nodded, not trusting his voice.

The game continued, and less than half-way through, he could not sit straight anymore; this being his first time trying alcohol, coupled with his already tiny build, he was proud of himself for still being conscious. Hanamiya, luckily, was in a similar state, the previous half a bottle on an empty stomach finally catching up with him.

"Call it a night, hmm?" the raven murmured, not quite slurring but rather relaxed on the vowels.

"Mmhm," Kuroko agreed easily, too tired and warm to bother being more coherent. He startled as he felt an arm wrapping around his middle under his arms, hauling him up. "C'mon, shadow boy, time for bed."

"Don't... Call me 'sha-shadow boy'" the bluenette drawled, interrupted half way by a massive yawn, that, for once, he didn't bother trying to cover up. Hanamiya chuckled, feeling warm and loose around the edges. "Whatever you say, shadow boy." and he led the pale teen to his room, house being too tiny to accommodate a guest room. He didn't really care about propriety; it's not like he was going to take advantage of the kid or anything. Yeah. Wait, no. He didn't even know, his thought process was seriously delayed. (he liked alcohol because it provided a valid reason to stop being a genius. Seriously. Living up to a reputation of genius Bad Boy was tiring.) He let go of Kuroko when they got to his room, and the bluenette dropped onto his bed like dead weight, asleep within seconds. Hanamiya had enough conscious thought left to take out his phone and take a picture of the scene (for future blackmail, he assured himself when sobriety returned) and then physically rolled Kuroko to one side of bed before he, too, dropped down beside him.

(another picture was taken in the morning, the bluenette's ridiculous bedhead providing a great source of amusement for Hanamiya which he demanded to be documented because 'we never actually finished our second game; you owe me'. Though arguing as ferociously as a hungover allowed for, the bluenette finally succumbed, and, when finally back in the sanctuary of his own home, he realised that a drunk Hanamiya was a cute Hanamiya, and one he didn't mind too much.)

The worst were moments when their priorities clashed.

"No." Kuroko stated into the phone, his voice leaving seemingly no room for argument.

"Oh, come on, Tetsuya! Stop being so chicken-shit!" Hanamiya snorted.

"No. No way, Makoto-kun. I'm not skipping school to go to an arcade with you, don't be stupid."

"I'm not asking." came the sly reply, and a moment later, a pebble hit the window by which Kuroko was sitting, and as he startled and looked out, he saw Hanamiya standing on the edge of the courtyard, hidden by the shade of one of the many cherryblossoms, smirking even from that distance. Kuroko scowled. "You're a bastard, Makoto-kun." But he still got up and grudgingly slipped away, unnoticed by his teacher and classmates alike.

(when Hanamiya greeted him, he looked like a satisfied cat, all lazy smirk and half-mast eyes, but Kuroko almost forgave him when the other held out a vanilla milkshake. Almost. "I'm not that easy, Makoto-kun." he murmured, not nearly pacified. The other merely laughed. "Wouldn't dream of it." half an hour later, Kuroko was trying his luck at a claw machine, smile on his face and vanilla milkshake in hand. Hanamiya won that round, but the bluenette could not find it in him to hold too much of a grudge; he, too, enjoyed a challenge.)

"If I can speak Japanese, why the fuck do I need to know what it was like 200 years ago? When would I ever need that knowledge?" Hanamiya grumbled, poring over his ancient Japanese textbook.

"For a genius, you can be surprisingly stupid at times, Makoto-kun." Kuroko mumbled, not looking up from the mess of formulas and equations that made up his chemistry textbook, trying to translate it into something that made sense.

"What the fuck is that supposed to mean?" the other glared, eyeing the bluenette up. "I have no idea how you can be struggling over something as simple as limestone decomposition. It's literally calcium carbonate and heat." he pointed out, not even looking at the formula to see if he was right.

Kuroko blinked. "What is Makoto-kun struggling with in ancient Japanese then? It's literally the stem of a compound word in modern Japanese?" Hanamiya froze, staring at his paper critically until his eyes widened and he looked at Kuroko with a sly smirk. "I think we can both get something out of this, hm?"

(it was worth all the arguments and the scowls and Hanamiya smacking his head on the desk for the nth time when Kuroko couldn't grasp electrolysis even after thorough explanation when Kagami stared at his partner's assignment, a large, unmistakable 96% in the top right corner, then back to his own 47%, then back to Kuroko's, who, not too long ago was only marginally higher than him and his dumbfounded question of, "Oi, Kuroko, since when are you good at chemistry?" and, to his surprise, the bluenette merely shot him an enigmatic smile and murmured, "I found a good tutor."
Hanamiya was cold, sadistic, impatient, and a menace on court, but when Kuroko sent him his result, the other replied with a smiley face and a 'if I pass my ancient jap, I'll treat you to a milkshake' that had Kuroko smiling adorably for the rest of the day, to the great concern of his teammates.)

After half a year of being friends, Kuroko could attest to six things about the other. Number one, Hanamiya was as sly and calculating in front of a shogi board as he was on court. Number two, he was a lot more unguarded when texting; joking and teasing coming a lot more easily to him than when talking face to face. Three, he was an affectionate drunk. Four, he had absolutely no regard for any form of hierarchy, or the wishes of others if there was something he wanted. Number five, he was almost scarily persuasive. Number six, he required almost as much if not more of Kuroko's attention that Nigou, getting snappy when the other ignored him or didn't answer his messages immediately, regardless if he had good reason not to.

Riko, unfortunately, got the true meaning of number six at practice, one day.

Their first practice match of the season was scheduled with Touou, but it was late enough in the afternoon that Riko saw no need to cancel practice, and so there they were, running shuttle runs while trying to conserve energy for their game afterwards.

Riko was standing on the side by the bleachers, next to Kuroko's bag as the bluenette had been uncharacteristically late and had not been able to put his stuff away in the locker rooms. She was just about to move and reprimand the new first years for slacking off, when she heard a quiet 'ding' from Kuroko's bag. That's odd, she thought, curious as to who would be texting Kuroko at a time when they have practice, but deciding not to invade the other's privacy.

That resolve lasted all of two minutes when she heard at least four more dings come from the bag, all within less than half a minute from each other. Making sure the bluenette's attention was focused on his 'light', she crouched and rifled in the bag until she pulled out the teen's phone, flipping it open quickly.

6 New Messages from 'Mako-chan'

'Mako-chan'? Curious still, she opened the messenger, and nearly gaped.

-I'm bored

-Tetsuya. Entertain me.

-Are you ignoring me?

-Do I have to remind you why that's a bad idea, Tetsuya?


-I'm giving you two minutes, then I'm getting on a train and coming to your school.

Just as she was gaping at the other's gall, and wondering why on earth someone as meek and unassuming as Kuroko would be hanging out with someone as obviously self-absorbed and attention seeking as this 'Mako-chan', the phone vibrated again, three times in a row in quick succession.

-I'm getting on the train. I warned you.

-You owe me chocolate. You know which kind.

-Oh, and I'm bringing shogi.

Riko paled, dropping the phone back into the other's bag. Surely, the person was bluffing. She shrugged and called a water break, the boys crumbling on the side, the water break very much appreciated. As Kuroko approached his bag, she debated straight out asking or trying to be subtle, then realised subtlety had never been her style. Oh well. "Kuroko-kun," she called to the boy as he came closer, smiling. "do you have a girlfriend?" she saw Kuroko as well as some of the other regulars do a doubletake, confused. "No, I don't, Riko-san." the bluenette murmured, nonplussed, even as he regarded his coach curiously.

"Ah, okay, I was merely curious." she shrugged it off, ushering them back to practice. So that rules out the possibility of a secret girlfriend, she mused, still intrigued as to the identity of the secret caller. She debated calling Momoi since the other girl was rather gifted in the art of information gathering, especially when it came to her dearly beloved Tetsu-kun, but she decided against it for the time being; she still had her pride, damn it!

Practice came to an end not too long after that, Riko having decided to give them more than enough recovery time and go over the tapes of their old games with Touou, trying to discern any patterns in the offense or habits to exploit.

Just as they were all getting their things ready to leave the sports hall and move into one of the empty classrooms, an unfamiliar voice called out, freezing them all in their tracks.


The bluenette in question did not jump, but his eyes widened marginally, yet he appeared oddly unsurprised for what the occasion called for.

"Makoto-kun, I told you not to come today, I have a game after this." the steely tone of the shadow's voice was more exasperated than angry, as if berating a misbehaving pet.

"And I told you that I don't appreciate being ignored." the other snarked back, but it lacked any real bite, sounding more like a familiar routine.

"Yes, I do recall Makoto-kun mentioning that he has about the same attention span and patience as a needy puppy." Kuroko remarked, forever deadpan.

Kagami blanched, and Seirin gaped at their shadow, the previous mocking turning into something that sounded suspiciously like friendly teasing .

"If I'm a puppy then that makes you the bitch." the other merely retorted, smirking at Kuroko, a challenging glint in his eyes.

To Seirin's surprise, their shadow took the insult in stride, signing dejectedly. "Crude as always, Makoto-kun. I should really make you wash your mouth out with soap."

"Honestly, Tetsuya, you sound more and more like my grandmother with every fucking day." the other sighed dramatically, running a hand through his hair.

Tetsuya. Riko suddenly gasped at the realisation of who 'Mako-chan' is. But when had Kuroko had the time to get so familiar with the Bad Boy of Kirisaki Daiichi? And why on earth did this partnership cause such an uneasy feeling in her gut?

"If I agree to play, will Makoto-kun shut up and let me play the game in peace?" Kuroko asked, though it sounded rhetorical more than anything as he was already gathering his things and turning towards where the raven was standing. Surprised at the blunt tone and rude question of the usually overly-polite boy, Seirin could only stand and watch, dumbfounded, as Kuroko and Hanamiya fucking Makoto walked out of the gym, not quite holding hands, but standing much closer than rivals from opposing schools should.

Finally, Riko regained her wits. "Wait, Kuroko-kun!" she called out, catching the bluenette's attention just as he was about to step outside.

"Yes, Riko-san?" he asked with his usual politeness.

"We only have two hours till our game with Touou." she pointed out, eyes narrowing when Hanamiya chuckled, draping an easy arm around Kuroko's shoulder which he, to everyone's shock, made no move to shrug off.

"Don't worry, that should be plenty of time for what I have planned." his grin turned savage. "I'll try my best to deliver your darling Kuroko-kun back on time. And in one piece." his eyes glinted in the same maniacal way they had during their game, and Riko felt uneasy letting Kuroko go off with such a creep-

"Ah!" Hanamiya scowled, rubbing the spot on his ribs where Kuroko had elbowed him. "Enough with the dramatics, Makoto-kun; stop wasting the time that could be spent playing. Then, he turned to Riko and smiled reassuringly. "You needn't worry yourself, coach, I'll be back on time." and then he led Hanamiya away, leaving the rest of Seirin gaping at the place where their shadow had last stood, trying to make sense of the events of the last five minutes that were more logical than 'Hanamiya had brainwashed Kuroko and now they're best buds'. Kagami, visibly the most affected of them all, finally found his voice. "Can anyone tell me what the fuck just happened?"

"Your guess is as good as mine, bakagami." Hyuga muttered, eyes wide behind crooked glasses at the same time as Riko slapped Kagami on the back with a warning "Don't swear!"

Honestly, all of them had been wondering about their shadow ever since their win at the Winter Cup; could there be more sides to their Phantom player than the one they were so accustomed to seeing, sides that stood on equal grounds with the likes of Imayoshi or Hanamiya? They shuddered to think that could be the case.

Seirin had, in fact, gradually recovered from the shock of seeing Bad Boy Hanamiya with their shadow, and had gotten on with analysing the games till it was really time to go and start warming up. Touou had arrived too, Imayoshi at the front with Aomine trailing not too far behind, his usual scowl only deepening when he looked around, no doubt in search of his shadow, and could not find him.

"Oi, Kagami, where's Tetsu?"Aomine barked, unable to find his shadow.

"Like hell if I know! That bastard Hanamiya just appeared out of nowhere and dragged Kuroko out, 'cause he was bored and he 'wanted to play'!" the other yelled back, cringing as he quoted.

"Oh? Makoto-chan was here?" Imayoshi inquired, his tone making it sound like the situation was a fascinating science experiment. "I told him not to bother Tetsuya-kun today since he needs to be sharp for our game." he murmured, smiling.

"You knew about this?!" Aomine snapped, turning on his captain, torn between anger and curiosity.

"Mou, of course I did - I introduced them after all." Imayoshi explained, grinning. "But even I could not have predicted that they'd get along so well ~ they're getting out of hand." he chuckled, sounding half amused, half ominous.

"'Get along'?!" Kagami shrieked, to the amusement of the Touou Captain. "They should not 'get along'! That Hanamiya is a goddamn maniac!" the redhead raged while Aomine, for once, backed the other up.

"Tetsu had been real angry on court during their game, he wouldn't just get comfy with the creep after that!" he argued, narrowed eyes glaring at Imayoshi.

"Ah, I never said that they get along on court." the bespectacled teen pointed out, smirking mysteriously. "They're the opposite of what you and Tetsuya-kun had" he motioned to Aomine "they hate each other, and everything the other stands for when on court, but are almost scarily compatible off-court." he explained, then added almost as an afterthought. "And they are both quite good at board games, so that's always fun."

"What the actual - you know what, I don't even want to know." Kagami shook his head, signing dejectedly, wondering what kind of shit his partner had gotten into this time. "But if he doesn't show his face in the next minute I'm gonna -!"

"You needn't finish that sentence, Kagami-kun, I'm already here." a voice interrupted, and all heads swerved in the direction from where it came from. And there stood Kuroko, all kitted up and ready, wristbands on, while beside him -

"Ah, have you finally decided to embrace your feminine side, Makoto-chan?" Imayoshi crooned.

"Shut the fuck up, Shouichi, I swear to god -!" but the threat was considerably weaker than it would've normally been when Hanamiya was dressed in one of Kuroko's spare jerseys, number 11 displayed like a brand on his chest, while a matching white and red rimmed miniskirt hung off his hips, with knee high white socks to match and heels that would've put Momoi to shame. Both Seirin and Touou stood with their jaws hanging wide, some snickering openly at the usually fiercesome General's unfortunate predicament.

"Ah, yes," Kuroko began, as if only just realising that all eyes in the sports hall were on them as he addressed Riko. "Makoto-chan will be our mascot for today, if that's okay?" he asked casually, voice deadpan as ever. To everyone's surprise, Hanamiya ground his teeth in obvious agitation, but didn't otherwise try to defy Kuroko or the bluenette's words.

"How the hell did you even get him to agree?!" Kagami scoffed, disbelief, amusement and frustration all meshing into one.

"I believe Makoto-chan lost the game, didn't he? " Imayoshi chuckled, appearing unaffected by the withering glare Hanamiya sent his way. When Seirin's curiosity didn't subside, Kuroko explained.

"Hanamiya-kun and I have a habit of betting before we play. Today I requested that, if I won, Hanamiya-kun had to dress up as Seirin's mascot in today's practice match."

Kagami laughed, but Aomine seemed almost concerned. "But with your bet being as ridiculous as that, I doubt that the bastard didn't think of something even worse." Nobody had time to wonder at the ace's sudden display of intelligent thought, as, the moment the comment left his lips, Hanamiya laughed.

"Oh no, if I had won, Tetsuya kindly agreed to volunteer as a model for a gay porn magazine." he announced, cackling gleefully. Both Seirin and Touou froze, while Kuroko merely nodded in acknowledgement, appearing nonplussed. "Hai, I did."

Both, Hyuga's and Imayoshi's glasses showed clear signs of being about to crack, while Aomine and Kagami's jaws had officially hit the floor, and Izuki was trying to hide something that looked suspiciously like a nosebleed.

"O-oi why the fuck would you ever agree to something like that, Tetsu?!" Aomine raged, pointing an accusatory finger at the impassive bluenette.

"I was feeling lucky; I wasn't going to lose. And Midorima-kun messaged me saying that Aquarius ranked first in today's Oha-Asa horoscope. I even had today's lucky item on hand; a black wristband. I just felt like I couldn't lose, and I had to get back at Makoto-chan for his previous request." at that, Kuroko shot the raven beside him a piercing glare, while the other merely smirked and winked, of all things. Kuroko's eyes narrowed in a way Seirin rarely got to witness off court, and they nearly pitied the cross-dressed teen.

"Anyway, Makoto-chan, I have a game now, so why don't you go and sit at the side like a good mascot? Nigou might even keep you company if you behave." Aomine paled at the sickly sweet quality of the others voice and stared at Imayoshi in horror, but his captain merely clucked his tongue, looking for all intents and purposes like a proud mother. This display, more than most, had both teams staring at Kuroko in unmasked awe, even more so when the Kirisaki Daiichi captain merely scowled but obediently walked off to sit at the bleachers.

Kuroko turned to them all, a curious look on his face, "I believe we have a game to play?"

And as Riko watched the game unfold, their first since the Winter Cup, and the one where Kuroko's Misdirection was meant to have been futile, she found that that was, in fact, not the case, as some of the Touou players could not help glancing at Hanamiya every once in a while, providing the bluenette enough of a window to slip away from the defence. Half-way through the game he was finally able to fully overwrite his presence with that of Hanamiya's, and, as the game came to an end, Seirin having secured their win with another buzzer-beating dunk from their, now second-year, duo, Riko could not help but wonder if that hadn't been Kuroko's intention from the very start.

She really needed to watch him now that he'd picked up such troublesome friends.

As Kuroko walked up to Hanamiya, she saw the other murmur what sounded suspiciously like "I'll get my revenge, Tetsuya. Just wait." to which the bluenette cracked a small smile and patted the other's head. "Whatever you say, Makoto-kun." and she could not help but wonder if she'd missed some monumental moment when Kuroko had grown some serious balls.

But Hanamiya had gotten his revenge, not too long after that; at the Interhigh qualifiers, to be exact.

Seirin, as well as all the other teams that had Generation of Miracles players were all sat in the same wing, watching as Kirisaki Daiichi was warming up for their game against Seiho, and Kuroko was mysteriously missing.

"Oi, does anyone know where Kuroko is?" Kagami spoke out, catching the attention of those around him. "I thought he'd want to be here when his new bestie gets his ass handed to him on a silver platter."

A surprised guffaw came from the region occupied by Touou, but when everyone turned to see, Imayoshi had already composed himself. "Ah, I believe Tetsuya-kun got front-row seats." he murmured vaguely in response to the questioning looks.

"Nee, you can see Kurokocchi, Imayoshi-san?" Kise piped up, craning his head to look at the older boy. When the other nodded, Seirin and those who knew Kuroko turned back to the court to try and find him.

"There he is!" Kagami exclaimed, then paled. Sitting at the side of the court, on the chair usually reserved for the coach, was Kuroko, looking for all intents and purposes relaxed, as if this was a commonplace occurrence, if not for the fact that he kept fidgeting and trying to pull down the skirt that kept riding up his thighs. Kagami's mind short-circuited. Skirt? Forcing himself to calm down, Kagami looks down and considers his partner again. He was wearing the trademark bottle green and black uniform of Kirisaki Daiichi, the #4 jersey clearly borrowed from Hanamiya as it hung loosely around his shoulders, (even though the other is only a few inches taller than him), and a matching black miniskirt and knee-high socks with green ribbons covered his shins.

"K-Kurokocchi is wearing... a skirt?" Kise stutters out, a light blush dusting his cheeks, and his wide eyes were mirrored by Aomine, who looked as if someone just slapped him. Momoi was cooing at how adorable her Tetsu-kun looks and how they should definitely play dress up more often, while Takao could barely reign in his laughter, but whether it was at Kuroko's embarrassing predicament or Midorima's visibly flustered face, was anyone's guess. They watched as the referee called for the players to line up, and just as Hanamiya was about to walk off to join his team in the middle, he stopped by Kuroko's seat and they had a short exchange that ended in the bluenette burying his face in his hands, the tips of his ears clearly red even from as far away as the onlookers' stands, and Hanamiya laughed and-


"Well, well, Makoto-chan, who knew you could be such a charmer?"

Akashi had heard the rumours about a friendship forming between Kirisaki Daiichi's Bad Boy and Teiko's phantom sixth man, but he'd dismissed them; if it was anything serious, he was certain Kuroko would come to him himself, now that their relationship was on the rocky but steady path to recovery.

He had a very poor opinion of the Kirisaki Daiichi player, the other having done little out of the ordinary to impress him. But, he thought, as he stared at the photo Aomine had sent him, on which Kuroko's face was dusted with a light blush as he tried to unsuccessfully tug down the black miniskirt, the clearly too-big jersey slipping off one shoulder, and the gap between the skirt and top of the stockings exposing pale, unblemished skin of his thighs, he reckoned that he could learn to get along with Hanamiya Makoto if it meant more of that kind of pictures.

That opinion was shattered not ten seconds later when Kise sent him a picture with the Uncrowned King kissing Kuroko's cheek, the latter's face considerably more flustered than before, and the smirk of the Kirisaki player visible even on the grainy 2D image. Akashi felt a sadistic smirk forming on his own lips.

Seems like he'll have to reacquaint himself with his trusty old scissors.

9 thousand motherfucking words. What even.

I apologise for the mistakes - majority of this was written on an airplane, and then my grandma's computer contains 2003 Word. 2003! so the editing is kinda shitty :(

I hope you enjoyed this as much as I enjoyed writing it - I seriously have a thing for obscure pairings, even though this is more bromantic and general that an actual slash fic normally would be. I might add another chapter to this, with the reactions of various teams and people to the slowly budding relationship between the two most unlikely players if it's requested, or I have a lot of time on my hands.

Anyway, please drop me a line and tell me what you think~!