A/N: That's right this is going to be a multi-chaptered continuation of the Sana/Hayama story that the anime leaves off at episode 102. Why has there been so little work on this storyline people? This is a fairly old show that I think is one of the more charming and original stories. The dynamic between the young couple is memorable and always highly-charged. I hope you enjoy it, but I warn you that readers who have not seen almost all the episodes won't understand what's going on in this story. I make allusions to several past episodes, but I don't find it necessary to explain them all in detail. Email me if you find any of them confusing, I understand that this series isn't as widely available as other anime shows. Disclaimer: I don't own these characters. ENJOY!
A cold wind blew across the roof of the old north wing of Jinbo Junior High School, two lone figures staring at each other for a few moments until the girl spoke, "Hayama, after you pass your black belt test tomorrow, there's something I need to tell you." The boy across from her silently nodded his head, trying to read the hidden meaning in her words. With one last smile, the girl turned around and walked through the doorway leading down a staircase. The boy followed her retreating form with his penetrating, emotionless gaze until she disappeared from view. He then uttered one quiet word, "Sana..."
Hayama Akito age 14 turned his eyes back to the scenic view of the city contemplating Kurata's words. "I have something to tell you..." To anyone else, those words might have indicated nothing special, but only Hayama realized the full weight of their meaning. They had been through so much over the past year, so much heart break and bitter disappointment that he almost longed for the days when they were still sixth graders. Back then it had only been the two of them and nothing in between. Of course that would also mean that that airhead Kurata would have still been blissfully ignorant of his feelings for her and he silently wishing he could kiss her anytime he wanted without getting whacked on the head by her toy mallet. But with a mental grimace, Hayama admitted she had been pushed into reality too harshly. She had traded sweet naiveté of love for heartache. One of the things he liked most about her was her cheerful and innocent nature. When he had first met her two years ago, she had done her best to make his life better and ease his own inner turmoil. To watch her experience her own personal hardships this year had hurt him as much as it did her. It seemed unreal to see her constant happy grin slip off her face, the light in her eyes dim with pain.
Another cold wind blew suddenly over the rooftop, shaking Hayama from his silent reverie, reminding him he could not stand there in solitude too long. The tall lanky youth made his way thoughtfully and slowly down the stairs and wandered the deserted halls to his locker, pulling out his books and folded karate uniform. He then walked down the street in the direction of the dojo, his always serious face impassive to his surroundings.
Later that day Hayama walked home from karate practice, the sun just beginning to set behind his shoulder as he walked down the sidewalk toward his house. He was ready for tomorrow. He could feel his strength and skill of movement every time he practiced now, the black belt within his grasp. Hayama treasured the afternoons he spent at the dojo, for while he preformed the complicated steps and moves, karate burned through his brain. There was no time to dwell on any other thoughts while he practiced, all of his concentration occupied in coordinating his muscles in stretching in the fluid movements of the ancient martial art. No time to think about the pair of hazel eyes that followed him everywhere...
Kurata Sana, age 13 years old woke up disoriented the next morning, slamming her hand down on her alarm clock to get the silly Hawaiian pig to stop dancing and singing. She glanced sleepily over to look at the time, and then with a screech that rocked the whole house to its foundation, leaped out of bed, managing to get dressed in her school uniform in under ten seconds flat.
"I'M LAAAAAAAATE!!!!!" she screamed, running down the stairs while kicking up a cloud of dust behind her. "Good morning Mama! Good morning Maro-chan!" Sana said running up to the dining room table, sitting down to stuff her mouth full of breakfast as quickly as possible.
"Ah, good morning daughter. I thought I heard Shimura-san say that she has your lunch prepared for today," said Kurata-sensei in her usual calm and detached voice. Maro-chan, her pet squirrel, was dressed in a karate uniform and going through the motions of a complicated martial arts routine in front of a tiny dojo nestled precariously in Kurata-sensei's hair.
"Thanks Mama, I gotta ruuuuun!" yelled Sana as she swallowed the last bite of her breakfast. The hyper 13 year-old then dashed into the kitchen, grabbed her packed lunch, and ran at top speed out the front door of the Kurata's expensive mansion.
Eight blocks later, Sana was still running faster than the speed of sound, trying to reach the front gates of her junior high school before the bell sounded. Of course, not watching where she was going in her haste, the clumsy girl smashed head long into what felt like a brick wall. "AAAAHHHHH!" Her head was pounding in a punishing rhythm from the crash. Sana opened her eyes slowly only to notice she was lying on top of Hayama Akito, who looked just as stunned to be suddenly lying on the ground. Sana suddenly looked down and realized all of her limbs had somehow become entangled with Hayama's and she blushed a deep red in embarrassment. "Oh no," she thought, "why did this have to happen now??!!" She was lying in a very compromising position with the very boy who had been consuming her thoughts for the past year. Last night she had lain awake in bed, thinking of exactly what she would say to him once he received his black belt. Would he return her feelings? Did he still feel the same as he said he did that day they stood in front of the clinic?
"Kurata?" mumbled Hayama in confusion as he suddenly realized who had caused him to land on the hard sidewalk. Sana wanted to move but felt herself paralyzed in shock, unable to look away from those deep hazel eyes. When had things changed? She used to be so comfortable around Hayama in sixth grade, but now she was so unsure of how he felt about her, she only felt awkward and silly.
Hayama had been walking to school that morning when he had heard someone running behind him, breathing harshly, and obviously in a hurry. The next minute, he was lying on the ground with a heaving Sana on top of him. The first thought that entered his mind as he looked up at the blushing girl was how he wished they could stay like that for awhile. To his immense disappointment, she untangled her long white legs from his and clumsily stood back up.
"Good morning Hayama!" Sana laughed, her hand behind her head and a blush still present on her pale face indicating she was still embarrassed about the fall, "I'm so sorry I didn't see you there!"
"It's nothing," the tall boy replied, gathering his books and getting back up to his feet. "I see you woke up late again."
"Yes but you see I'm two minutes earlier than usual! I think I'm becoming a faster runner!" commented the red-head while doing a couple extra laps around the stoic boy for demonstration.
"Hey Kurata..." Hayama started to say, catching hold of her in mid-stride by the elbow.
"SANA-CHAN!" Aya-chan and Tsyoshi-kun called, walking down the street hand in hand. Sana and Hayama turned in their direction and Sana began waving wildly to her good friends as they approached. "Good morning!" she called back in her usual cheerful voice, "Aren't you two getting here later than usual?" she asked.
"Well we were walking here when we stopped to get a magazine Aya-chan saw on display in front of the grocery store around the corner from her house," replied Tsyoshi.
"Yes, it says here that Naozumi-kun is going to be starring in a new American-funded movie next month!" continued Aya while pointing to the article. Sana's face fell for a brief second at the mention of her ex-boyfriend, but only Hayama noticed it before she quickly covered it up with fake cheerful interest.
"Kamura?" Hayama mumbled, a scowl lightly touching his face at the sound of that pretty-boy's name. He had caused nothing but trouble since he had walked into their lives two years ago; effectively frustrating Hayama's every attempt to get closer to Sana. If it weren't for all that propaganda in the news, and all that time he was spending with her on location for the movies they were filming, he might not have truly believed that Sana had cared for the fool. And he might not have gone out with Fuka..."
"Yes Rei-kun told me something last night about the movie he's doing," Sana's voice interrupted Hayama's silent thoughts on the young actor, "Apparently Naozumi-kun is playing the son of an American spy living in Tokyo with his Japanese wife. His father is assassinated in his home and Naozumi-kun's character goes on the hunt to find his father's killers. It's an action movie that takes place both here and in Los Angeles in America so he's going to have to learn about half his lines in English. Rei-kun told me about it to try and get me to accept a new movie offer, but I told him I'm still taking a break. I still have a lot of school work to catch up on left over from the last six months I spent overseas!" Sana replied.
"So you're going to be staying here then for the rest of the term?" Aya-chan asked excitedly. Hayama also waited in anticipation for her answer, fearing another separation.
"Yes," Sana laughed, "I want to stay here for awhile. I'll start working again soon, but I told Rei-kun I'd only do local projects that mostly fit around my school schedule." Hayama let out a quiet sigh of relief upon hearing her answer.
"I'd like to do another play actually," Sana said putting on a dramatic face and pointing out into space at nothing in particular, "LIVE is best! No room for mistakes in front of a full home!" she declared loudly.
"Umm don't you mean full house Sana-chan?" questioned Tsyoshi-kun while scratching his head in confusion.
At that moment the late bell started chiming and the four friends quickly scrambled to grab all their books and run to class. Aya and Tsyoshi ran ahead, hand in hand while Hayama grabbed Sana's arm before she could barrel out of his reach.
"Kurata" Hayama said, gaining the frantic girl's attention. Sana stopped running with Hayama barely holding on to her and looked around at her long-time friend. "Huh?" she answered.
"After I get my belt today, I'll come by your house. We can talk then ok?" Hayama said, looking seriously into her big brown eyes.
"Ah..alright," Sana replied, a bit of nervousness showing in her voice as she realized what would be happening later that day. The end of the chimes brought the brief moment between the pair to a sudden close as Sana screeched at the top of her lungs, "WE'RE LAAAAAAATE!" and ran off into the school building, pulling Hayama behind her in her destructive wake.
The rest of the school day passed uneventfully, and had ended with Hayama walking down the street to the karate dojo, Sana waving and calling out her good lucks behind him. With a final glance back, Hayama had disappeared around the corner and Sana turned in the opposite direction, making her way thoughtfully back home.