Well, this is my last chapter, so enjoy!
Disclaimer: I do not own the Prince of Tennis.
Not many people had come yet. But Tezuka was sure there would be more soon. Eiji was already crying freely in Oishi's arms.
Oishi stood, absentmindedly stroking the Eiji's red hair. Inui stood in front of the grave with a look of complete confusion on his face. The book of data he had had been holding fell to the ground and splashed into the mud. Fuji was clutching onto Kawamura's shoulder, his frail body weak from shock. Kawamura just looked sadly at the ground, not even his tennis racket could give him energy now. Momo seemed to be taking it the worst, although inside Tezuka knew his own pain was greater. Momo sat at the edge of graveyard, staring at the marble tombstone. His eyes were filling with tears that rolled down his cheeks, only to be recreated again. Kaido was not here yet; Tezuka doubted that he would even show up.
But for once, Tezuka was wrong, Kaido walked through the crowed of regulars, and walked strait up to Ryoma's grave. His hands began working at the blue bandana wrapped around his head. Kaido placed the bandana on the fresh mound of dirt along with a tennis ball he had retrieved from his pocket.
Kaido took a deep breath and said, "Echizen, I'm sorry for not realizing earlier how important your friendship was to me. I only wish we had become better friends, not just rivals. But I was jealous, and I haven't said anything until it was to late. I'm sorry."
At the end of his speech, Kaido backed away, and stood next to Inui.
Fuji's legs went limp and he fell to the ground, sobbing uncontrollably.
"Fuji!" Kawamura knelt down next to the devastated regular.
In his mind Tezuka knew that even Kaido was showing more emotion the he was. But inside, he was being ripped apart, his heart torn into a million pieces. But he could not show it, no, he kept emotions inside as he always did.
It wasn't long before Tezuka could see eight black and red uniforms marching toward them. All of the members of Fudomine had come to pay their last respects. They stood together in a tight group, looking sadly at the grave. The only member that looked truly devastated was Akira. He was crying softly on Shinji's shoulder.
Shinji looked down at the red headed boy in his arms.
"Stupid Echizen (mutter, mutter) Hurting Akira (mutter, mutter) braking the heart (mutter, mutter) that's supposed to be mine (mutter, mutter)"
Only one member from St. Rudolf showed up. It was Fuji's brother Yuuta.
He ran over to the fallen boy and wrapped his arms around his neck.
"Anki! Are you okay?" Fuji nodded slightly, and Yuuta seemed content.
The coach and her grand daughter were also present. The girl's dark hair blowing slowly in the wind.
Tears brimmed her eyes, and her grandmother held her close.
"I loved him." She said after a moment.
Tezuka glared at her. That was the girl that was always at their practices. She went to every game. She had run out on the court when Ryoma cut his eye. She must have been the one he loved. What a fool he was, to think that Ryoma could ever feel the same way. To think that he would like Tezuka more than just a captain, no, no one did.
After everyone had paid their respects, they turned to leave. Soon, the only one left was Tezuka, standing alone by Ryoma's grave.
His knees suddenly gave way as the truth hit him.
Ryoma was gone, and he was never coming home. As Tezuka fell to the ground, tears began to fill his eyes. Ever cense he was little; he had been so good at hiding his emotions. He would never smile, or cry or laugh. He had faced many tragedies and hardships in his life that made him want to brake down, to end this act. But none as much as this. He remembered Ryoma's hazel eyes, and his always-sarcastic laugh. He remembered the boy who held his heart in his hand, the heart that was now buried deep in the soft ground.
Tezuka wiped his eyes free of tears as he heard foot steeps behind him.
"Are you okay?" Fuji repeated the question he had been asked minutes ago.
Fuji sat down next to Tezuka and looked up at the dark clouds.
"Over the months, I have had a surprising amount of emotions toward Ryoma." Tezuka looked at him with confusion.
"I have felt friendship, as every other regular has, and I have felt hatred, because I saw how he hurt you."
Tezuka's heart skipped a beat, 'He knows.'
"I have also felt love, and I have felt jealousy, because he was the only one who could control your emotions." Fuji rested his head on Tezuka's shoulder. "A trait that I wish I had."
Tezuka looked at the boy next to him. His deep blue eyes were only half lidded as though he was in a dream state.
"But one day I felt guilt. I had hated him, hated him for stealing you, for hurting you. He passed you once. You were talking to a girl, I believe her name is Yumi."
Tezuka nodded guiltily.
"I followed Ryoma, to make sure he would be okay. He began to hit the tennis ball against the wall as hard as he could. His strength was so great that I was surprised he held onto the racquet as long as he did.
Tezuka's eyes widened slightly.
"Did you ever wonder where the scar on his shoulder was from?"
"Then his eye-"
"That's right. His eye was not the only incident involving a broken tennis racquet. I knew then that he loved you, although I didn't want to admit it. But eventually I did. He would only get distracted during games if his eyes caught the glare of your glasses hit sunlight. He would only miss a point when you looked at him. So I gave you up. I gave you up to him. And I still do. Because he is your prince, you only prince."
Fuji stood up, and brushed the mud off of his shirt.
He began to walk away, back toward the parking lot, when Tezuka shouted his name.
He got no reply.
"Syuusuke!" Tezuka had caught up with Fuji, and he laid a hand on his shoulder.
"I'm sorry." He said as Fuji's deep blue eyes turned to great him, "I didn't mean to hurt you."
Fuji brushed his hand on the side of Tezuka's face. "I know."
Fuji took a step backwards, leaving Tezuka alone again.
He walked back to Ryoma's grave, and fondly traced the letters written upon it.
He looked down beside him, to see Fuji's tennis racket lying abandoned in the mud. He looked at it for a moment, as a cool wind blew through the air.
"Thank you." Whispered Tezuka, as he ran to join Fuji.
(Sigh) Another attempted Fic, and another failed. Oh well, it was fun! Thanks a lot!