It was a rather chilly day in Miyagi Prefecture, as the autumn wind brought forth the colder air from the sea to the east. It was to be expected of early October, as to discard the idea of summer and begin again with autumn. In light of the recent chill that was undoubtedly the first of many, the local high school of Karasuno had officially required all students to begin wearing their winter uniforms. While this change did not affect the men of the school too much, the ladies' uniforms required the wearing of a jacket, which was often paired with a cute scarf and some nice mittens. The men of the school heralded this season, as they were able to witness the fine qualities of feminine wiles that one can only see during the chilly months. This, of course, does not mean that all students welcome the change of seasons, as there were likely to be illnesses born from the cold. On the contrary, other students were far too happy about the change in climate.
The call resonated throughout the halls of the school, as Nishinoya Yuu and Tanaka Ryunosuke spotted their favorite manager, Shimizu Kiyoko. Upon hearing the two idiots call her name, Shimizu turned on her heel and left, ignoring the second years in doing so.
"I just love the way she ignores me Ryuu!" A love-struck Nishinoya exclaims to his best friend.
"Noya-san, I know what you mean. Even if she transferred schools I'd still call her name." Tanaka stated dreamily.
"But then she wouldn't even hear it, Tanaka. She can't ignore you if she doesn't hear you." Tanaka frowned as Sugawara Koushi strolled past while on his way to the faculty room.
"I'M ALLOWED DREAM, AREN'T I?"
Sugawara chuckled to himself as he walked away from the rowdy second years. Upon reaching the faculty room, Sugawara made his way to the desk of Takeda-sensei, where he found Sawamura Daichi speaking with said teacher. The two turned to Sugawara as he approached Takeda's desk.
"Sorry to take time out of your busy schedules boys," Takeda began, "but as you may have heard, the end-of-the-year exams are approaching at an alarming rate. Just like the spring exams, the retakes for these exams will be held the weekend after they are handed back to the students."
Sawamura shared a knowing expression with Sugawara, as they both understood Takeda's point.
Takeda continued, "you see what I'm getting at. Since the only thing that motivated those four the last time was the away games, I have taken the liberty to invite many of the schools who helped us on our way to nationals for a small series of games the weekend after the exams. I believe that should get them properly motivated."
"While I do agree, Sensei, I'm confused about why you asked us here."
"Well you see, I would like you to monitor their progress, maybe study with them more than you did last time. I also wanted you to be aware of the situation, unlike last time. That way you could try to devise a plan before practice."
"Ah... I-I see..."
"That was all I needed from you." As the two teens turned to leave Takeda spoke up again. "By the way, I would appreciate it if you wouldn't spread news of this. I don't think it's a good idea for those four to freak out before practice."
Time Skip- Afternoon Practice, End
Twelve heads sat in a semi-circle around Takeda. Next to Takeda sat Ukai Keishin, the team's current coach. Next to Ukai sat the lovely Kiyoko and her assistant manager Yachi Hitoka. Takeda began explaining things.
"I have invited all the teams who helped us improve on our way to nationals to a small training camp. Unlike our last camp, the games will be held at our school, in our gym. We will be staying in the same dorm as we did for Golden Week. Also, unlike last time, if you fail any of your exams, no amount of make-up tests will allow you to come to the games." Takeda looked around. "If you fail even one exam, you are not permitted to attend the games.
"Since the other schools' exams are being held the week after the camp, instead of singular practices after regular practices, everyone will be required to study for exams. In addition to the exams, there is an immersion project for all English classes. You need to find and speak with a native English speaker. Currently, there is only one native speaker in our school. I suggest you contact her and get the conversation over with immediately, as the other schools might need to speak with her as well. All the same, we encourage all of you to study even if many exams have already passed. Do I make myself clear?"
"Good. Let's try not to fail any tests, and let's do well this weekend!"
Daichi raised his hand. "Who is this native speaker, by the way?"
Takeda flipped through some papers gathered on his clipboard. "You wouldn't know her, she's officially beginning classes here tomorrow. Her name is Song Ginny*."
Time Skip- Next Day, Class 1-4
The bells rang to signal the beginning of classes. Many students rushed into the classroom, either stopping to socialize, or to finish the homework from yesterday before the teacher returned. Students dove into their desks as the English teacher, Ono-sensei, strode up to the podium in the front of the class to begin the lesson. Fifteen minutes into the lesson, the doors of the classroom open to reveal a panting girl with pale skin, dark brown hair, and blue eyes. After catching her breath, she cautiously walked up to Ono and handed her a piece of paper. Ono read the note, then smiled.
"Attention class, this is our new student Song Ginny, who has just transferred here from America."
Song bowed, then straightened up and turned to Ono.
"Your seat is in the back by the window, behind Tsukishima-kun."
Song's gaze followed Ono's finger as she pointed to said seat, and she couldn't help but notice the seemingly uninterested blonde looking out of the windows. She bowed once again with an utterance of "please take care of me", then made her way down the row that lead to her desk. She sat down and began emptying her bag, preparing for the lesson.
Time Skip- Lunch, Class 1-4
The call turned many heads in the room as Hinata and Kageyama made their way to Tsukishima's desk. Upon arriving, Hinata bowed, asking very loudly "please teach us English!"
Tsukishima looked annoyed, to say the least. "I thought Yachi was teaching you."
"Well, she was," Hinata rubbed the back of his head, "but she is out of her classroom right now, so please teach us!"
A frustrated groan emitted from Hinata. He and Kageyama then turned tail and began to leave. On their way out they passed by Yamaguchi, who reached out to stop them.
"Hinata, I think I can help you with your problem."
Hinata looked relatively confused. "I thought you sucked at English."
"I do, but you see that girl sitting behind Tsukki?" Yamaguchi pointed at Song, who had poked Tsukishima's shoulder to gain his attention. Tsukishima turned around and began helping her with her problem. "She is the new transfer student from America. You could probably get some help from her. I was going to ask her about the conversation later, but we can ask now, if you want."
Hinata looked at Song and then back at Yamaguchi. "Let's go!"
With that, Hinata, Kageyama, and now Yamaguchi were headed to Song's desk. Tsukishima, thinking that they were coming for him, spoke up rather quickly. "I already said no."
Hinata ignored Tsukishima and continued his way to Song, who was too engrossed in her work to notice their presence. He cleared his throat, which startled the poor girl and caused her to fall out of her chair. She lay there, on the floor, clutching her heart. After a few minutes of eyes on her, waiting patiently for a response, she sat up with her arms stretched out in front of her, and uttered a strained "I'm alive!" as she did so.
She awkwardly sat back down in her chair and turned her attention to the four boys surrounding her. "Yes, um, did you need something?"
Hinata bowed deeply, saying "please teach us English" as clearly as he could during a bow.
Song looked puzzled. "Oh um, okay. You can stand back up now, just uh, who are you?"
"Hinata Shouyou, Class 1-1!"
"Kageyama Tobio, Class 1-3."
"Yamaguchi Tadashi, Class 1-4."
Song nodded then tapped Tsukishima's shoulder. Tsukishima, being a gentleman, turned around to find a smug-looking Song staring at him.
"Well Mr. I'm-Too-Good-For-Everyone-Else, I'm waiting for your introduction."
"Tsukishima Kei. Class 1-4. Happy now princess?"
"Unbelievably." Song turned to the other three. "I'm Song Ginny, but I prefer being called Ginny."
Time Skip- Lunch, Class 1-4, End
"Thank you so much for helping us Ginny! I learned lots today, please teach us again in the future!" Hinata was jumping up and down at this point, while Kageyama was as silent as ever.
Ginny smiled. "That's good that you learned something Hinata. And yes, I'll gladly teach you guys again, it helps me catch up on the work here anyway."
Hinata and Kageyama left then, and Ginny went back to Tsukishima and Yamaguchi.
Yamaguchi scratched his cheek. "You know, you should come to our volleyball practice. We will be studying a little before and after club, and I'm sure Hinata would be happy to show off. Tsukki and I are on the team as well, and I'm sure Tsukki would be happier about having to deal with those two less and less. Right, Tsukki?"
Tsukishima just shrugged. "I couldn't care less. If the princess wants to show up, let her come."
Ginny looked at Tsukishima and took on a dramatic pose with one hand over her heart and a mischievous smile. "So you think I'm a princess?"
Tsukishima's ears faintly turned pink. "Tch." He turned back to his music, effectively tuning them out. Ginny looked at Yamaguchi, who gave her a thumbs-up.
Time Skip- Afternoon Practice
One headphone in and Folie à Deux on a loop, Ginny quickly walked to the gym, cursing under her breath about how long a teacher took to answer some questions. Because of the delay, she is now late to watch her new friends' practice. Checking the crumpled campus map she pulled from her pocket every so often, Ginny eventually came to the gym's doors. She slowly pushed the doors open and stepped inside.
A/N: Criticism of the constructive kind is always welcome, so please review!
*Said as "Ginny Song", not "Song Ginny" in English-speaking countries.