Finally got around to posting this. Was written a long time ago. But didn't have an ending so…here ya go!!
Thanks for reviewing!!! And for flaming!!! Though I wished if you did flame me at least have some viable excuse other than the plot!!!
Warnings: Ferret ahead!!!
Summary: Harry Potter returns as Suguru Fujisaki. I think mentioned this enough times so just skip this. Guess it's too late now that you've read it!
Chapter 4 – Return of the Death-defying Bouncing Ferret
Purple eyes lifted to gaze into my brown ones, puffy and red with recent tears. "Suguru…" He sniffed and shivered in the cold night air.
I looked at him in puzzlement and surprise. Shuichi and I weren't known for our buddy-buddy relationship. Just why he's sitting outside my door like an abandoned puppy was beyond my comprehension.
"Come on then." I reached for my keys, too tired to think straight. "Let's get you warmed up."
My apartment wasn't something to brag about. The living-dining room being dominated by a baby grand piano and four keyboards, there was just enough room to squeeze a small couch and a television to the side. I usually ate in the kitchen, keeping the cupboards and the fridge well-stocked with enough food for a family of five. I'm paranoid about empty cupboards. I guess growing up half-starved had some effect on my psychological behavior to them.
"Here. This will warm you up."
Shuichi stepped wide-eyed into the kitchen. "Thanks." His pale, trembling hands clutched at his steaming mug and took a small sip. "Hot chocolate! Never knew you liked it too Suguru!" I could see his puppy tail waving haphazardly in the air.
"You seem like a hot chocolate person." I shrugged and proceeded to make myself a steaming cup of milk tea. Does aspirin mix well with tea? Hope so. "What is it that you need to talk to me about?"
Shuichi flushed sheepishly peered at me over the rim of his cup. "W-who says I n-need to talk about anything? This could just be a social visit!" He ended indignantly. Was this guy really 3 years older than me?
I raised an eyebrow. "A social visit that includes five hours sitting by the door in the cold? Why not visit Nagano-san instead? Isn't he supposed to be your best friend?"
Shuichi blushed and bowed his head in a very un-Shuichi type of way. Great. I can't believe I'm feeling worried for the guy.
I sighed. "Listen Shindo-san. You don't have to talk if you don't want to."
Right, now I'm really worried. Gulping down the tea with my aspirin, I stood up and touched Shuichi's elbow gently, opting for the 'no questions' way to deal with him. The poor kid already had five hours straight of mauling over his problems. "Why don't you stay here tonight? You've got an early interview scheduled tomorrow right? I don't fancy K shooting holes into my door . . . or me . . ."
Shuichi's mouth quirked up in a small smile at my half-attempt to joke. Well, that's a beginning I guess. I pray this is not the beginning of another slump. My hands guided an unprotesting singer into my bedroom, which only consists of a twin-sized bed and a massive wardrobe. Massive, due to the fact that K insisted me to keep the clothes at the end of every concert. Nearly all of which consisted of the same black leather pants and silk, button down shirt.
I fumbled in my drawers before finding what I was looking for, a pair of dried flannel pajamas. These I bought for myself, but never used. Being always too tired to change, I usually just undress into my boxers and sleep in those. I threw the PJs at Shuichi, who caught it with his face. The singer gave a muffled yelp. Opps.
"Change before you go to bed. I don't want my covers dirty. Good night." I shut the door as Shuichi began muttering how ungrateful I am again. Ungrateful?! I sighed to myself softly, my left hand gently massaging at my throbbing head. Not bothering to undress, I dropped onto my small couch and fell into dreamscape.
It's odd how Malfoy always made such dramatic entrances at the most untimely opportunity. I woke up from a screech of horror. Two screeches of horror actually, but I couldn't really hear Malfoy's voice since Shuichi's is much louder and higher. Hmmmm . . . judging from that high F sharp he just produced, maybe I can finally finish composing our new song.
A UFO flew by. It had one large black ear with a hole in the middle and a circular prism body that landed with a large crash on my cream-colored walls. I felt the light of an oncoming headache.
At least that wasn't my favorite mug . . .
I reluctantly got up from my makeshift bed, wincing from my sore neck muscles. Another UFO came flying out, I think it was another mug, crashing just an inch above my baby grand piano. The ceramic pieces bounced from the keys to the hardwood floor and lay there glistening in the early morning light. Damn Shuichi. I'm still paying off that baby grand you know. I growled and stalked over to my bedroom.
"Shindo-san! If you throw another mug out that door I'll personally see to it that it lands on Yuki's face!" I turned rudely at Malfoy. "And you! Who do you think you are barging into my apartment like that? Get out!"
The two gaped at my sudden intrusion. Shuichi, still on the bed, covers lying crumpled around him with a picture frame in his right hand poised in a pitcher position. Malfoy, his hair not slicked back this time, gaped at my rumpled appearance, cheeks flushed, probably due to his high-pitch wail a few seconds ago.
I glared at the open-mouthed ferret. "Get out before I call security."
His mouth snapped shut and reopened. "Who the hell is he Harry?! He's not your partner is he?" Silver eyes looked incredulously into my own. "But he's a MUGGLE!"
Shuichi's violet eyes narrowed at the insult. "And you're a white-haired pervert!" He bellowed.
". . . idiot who dyes his hair fluorescent pink!"
". . . cross-dresser with no sense of style!"
"Shi-" I tried unsuccessfully to interrupt their tirade. My headache's getting worse with every scathing remark from both bakas.
". . . loud-mouth who shrieks like a girl!"
". . . better than that wheezing old geezer voice you have!"
". . . at least I'm not prone to-"
"That's it!" I screamed, slamming my hand against the wall. The door rattled on its hinges. "You!" I grabbed Malfoy by his collar. "OUT! NOW!"
Malfoy opened his mouth for further verbal abuse. Bad move. Doesn't he remember Harry's not a morning person?
The front door slammed with a satisfying bam on the ferret's face. Finally. Peace and quiet. I stomped over into the kitchen and cranked the radio up. Something classical would be nice. It always had a calming effect on me.
I turned over to the mused pink-haired singer staring at the front door. "Shindo-san." He turned slowly to face me. "What do you want for breakfast?"
Grrr…I thought a good night's sleep would make him better. Apparently not. I heaved a sigh and rubbed at my temples ruefully. "Listen to me Shindo-san. You got to eat something. Believe me. Yuki-san is not going to throw you out. No matter what stupid thing you do, Yuki still loves you. Any baka can see that."
Silence. This time of shock.
Understandable. I've always been against his relationship since it does create a rather unstable Shuichi, when he's really not that stable to begin with. But after a while of being in their presence, including the time when I accidentally caught them making out in the recording studio, (I wasn't able to look into Shuichi's eyes for a week after that. I mean, I really don't need to know exactly how flexible Shuichi can be. Nor did I realize Yuki-san could be so vocal.) I got used to their rather volatile relationship.
It just grows on you. Kind of like cancer.
The week flew by fast. Maybe it was because I requested a week's sick leave for my exams and K knew better than turning up at my door on his daily 'midnight' stroll to make sure I was sleeping and in bed. What kind of skewed logic is that? If I hadn't known Seguchi-san better, I would have sued him for harassment.
As it was, nobody knew of Shuichi's sudden appearances by my front door around eight o'clock. I didn't know why he was there, nor did I ask. I'm pretty sure it had something to do with Yuki and perhaps Hiroshi. Well, of all places he could go to, he just had to choose mine? I just don't get it!
So I let him stay. No questions asked. None were asked in turn. Most of the time we spent the night watching television together, mostly game shows and any music videos we wandered across, all of which seemed to include a lot of Nittle Grasper. Shuichi had a habit of commenting on the most inane things, which drove me crazy at first since I couldn't hear the commentator over Shuichi's voice. But it was a vast difference from listening to four blank, shadowed walls by yourself, which I got used to over the years.
Being the way he was, Shuichi managed to blabber away his problem two nights ago while I was cramming for Mathematics. To be honest, it wasn't anything big. Just something about Yuki being mad at him again, this time because he flushed his lover's whole stock of beer and cigarettes down the toilet. Shuichi had protested that both were bad for Yuki and therefore, in protection of Yuki's health, Shuichi got rid of all of them. Needless to say, Yuki was very pissed and literally threw the singer out in only a T-shirt and shorts with no wallet. Since Hiro's girlfriend was staying over at his place, he decided walked to my place instead. I'm surprised he even knew where it was. Also surprised that as immature as he acted at times, he knew when to leave people alone.
Well, after the first sleepover, he had gone back that morning only to find out that due to the excessive amount of waste he had poured down the throat of a porcelain God, it had taken to vomiting everything back up.
Hence, the famous writer was also booted out of his own apartment and moved into a nearby hotel. This incident caused Yuki's short fuse to go off even faster and the singer decided to let Yuki calm down a bit more before attempting to make contact.
Even I had to agree that is the wisest thing to do. It'll certainly be interesting to see Yuki jealous after Shuichi's extended stay in my home. Although it will certainly be detrimental to my health . . . well, I do have certain suicidal tendencies so why not amuse myself before Yuki shoots me down.
So at the end of my final day of examinations, also signaling the end of numerous stares I'd been succumbed to for the short time period of my stay, I was actually looking forward to meeting up with Shuichi in my apartment. Yuki had called him up yesterday and asked if his 'brat' wanted to have dinner with him tonight. The singer was so excited he knocked over a whole bowl of buttered popcorn all over the floor. I was excited too, not that I would look anything like it. It's not everyday you get to see Yuki going in an all out jealous fit over anything. A definite Kodak moment. Too bad the conversation took place over the phone.
I smirked to myself, relishing the fact that I could finally have something to blackmail Yuki. K would be happy to find the cure-all for Shuichi's slumps. K would be also happy to know that Bad Luck's keyboardists now had a rather large following in a certain high school. A definite boost on our next record sale.
Smiling to myself, (no more exams! YES!!!) I was literally knocked out of my thoughts by a tight, air-constricting hug. "Fuji-chan! Did you miss me?"
I grunted and managed to choke out the answer. "Are you kidding?! What are you doing here?!"
Takeshi ruffled my hair affectionately, letting me go with a final tight embrace. Final, because I kicked him in the shins. "K-san asked me to pick you up and drop you off at the studio. Something about a night show." The man hopped around me in circles nursing his battle wound.
Night show? Oh right. Some sort of interview for our soon-to-be released CD. With all predictably unpredictable things happening to our singer, K had somehow got the bright idea that by setting the release date earlier, it'd give Shuichi a motivation to do things on time. We still have four other songs unrecorded. The new CD was scheduled to be out in a month. In other words, we were screwed. Well, Shuichi and Nagano-san definitely were screwed. I'm trying hard to be.
I opened my mouth to thank the annoying bassist when I was interrupted again.
"Who is he?!" Malfoy's gray eyes looked piercingly into mine own. He was standing next to me in expensive muggle attire. When did he arrive? "Another MUGGLE partner?!" he sneered derisively at a shocked Takeshi.
"Who are you? Are you Fuji-chan's friend?" Takeshi calmly replied, knocking Malfoy's groping hands away from my only clean, cotton T-shirt. I discreetly inched my way behind Takeshi to use him as a shield from the ferret. Better Malfoy hex him than me. I don't own a wand right now. It broke two years ago.
"Harry Potter! Don't you dare hide from me!" I had a sudden close-up view of Hermione's face as she rattled me by the collar. Why did she arrive? How come I didn't see her? Does she know apparating in front of muggles is still forbidden? "It's been a week already and you still haven't answered us! Do you know how much paperwork you're holding up?!"
Takeshi looked a little shocked before attempting to knock her hand away from me too. My shining perverted hero and his white bass guitar! Please note the sarcasm.
"And no excuses Harry Potter! We gave you an entire week already! An entire week! We can't wait anymore! Don't you understand what is at stake here? There are still supporters out there Harry!" A week? Oh yeah. It was such a hassle getting rid of all those owls without Shuichi noticing.
By now the students were slowing down in their tracks to watch the drama unfold as Hermione got angrier and angrier and redder and redder. Most of them had a rather strained look on their face as the brown-haired woman shook and shouted in perfect British English.
"If one of them, any one of them, get the wind of this we will be back at square one! Don't you see Harry? There's so much as stake here. We don't want to go back to where we were before." Her voice quavered into a hiss.
I understand. You don't need to remind me. I know that if dark wizards ever get a hold of this tidbit of information, the first thing they'll do is to make me into their own personal wand. I understand all too well what is at stake. But what about me? Don't I get a say in this? What if I don't want a sodding partner?
"I know. I know what you mean." I raked my left hand through my hair and gave the witch a half-hearted smile. "But that doesn't mean I'll do it."
Hermione stepped back, her mouth dropping in shock, probably because 'the Boy-who-lived' had always played the reluctant hero in annual near-death experiences. I was such a fool back then.
"But –" A spluttering Hermione grabbed hold of my arm, in the same spot as Ron had done a week before, looking at me with desperation in her eyes. I glared back at her. "Harry, you can't just say that! Don't you care about everyone else anymore? I know Professor Lupin's death hit you hard but that doesn't mean you can cut all ties with us just like that. You are one of us. Whether you like it or not."
I gritted my teeth, my eyes boring holes on the patch of uneven concrete in front of me. Don't think. Don't think. Control your anger. Let go of all your emotions. Be blank. I took a deep breath. Think like Snape. I can't believe I just thought that!
"I don't care what excuses you are going to make Harry Potter! Do you know how many years we've been tracking you down? You such an irresponsible git Harry! How could you leave us like that?"
Remember the occlumency lessons from Snape. Sure I was a failure at it but . . . let's not think about that now. I exhaled and cleared my throat.
"It's been two years Harry! Do you know what you've been missing?! You haven't even got your NEWTS yet! And-" Hermione's rage seemed to fuel itself. If only Shuichi's overnight inspirations worked that way. We'll definitely get a lot more done.
I cleared my throat again. Hermione finally shuts her mouth and looked at me expectedly. "Look. I'm sorry about that but that's not my problem. I gave up on that part of my life two years ago already. I'm not going back."
She did an amazing imitation of a crocodile with a toothache.
"Now that we've got that cleared. I'm in a hurry, so please excuse us." I nodded my head to her politely, ladling on an extra thick Japanese accent to my spoken English. Grabbing Takeshi's sleeve, I scurried away as fast as possible without looking like a headless chicken.
I could not say I regretted leaving my ex-best friend like that. I really wanted to leave behind that life. Could they not see? Couldn't Hermione understand my position? Couldn't they just accept a simple refusal? It's my life afterall!
But there was one thing I regretted leaving behind, although I didn't realize this until much later. I had completely forgotten about the ferret. And, as you know, an ignored ferret is not a happy ferret indeed.