Disclaimer: I know you all know this, but Fruits Basket and its characters aren't mine. Just the story.
AN: This is a Kyo/Uo, so if you don't like the pairing don't read. Please read and review. Special thanks to my sister and the Insanity community for their support, and very special thanks to my beta reader ZeldaDragon. Her stories rock. You should read them. You want to flame me, fine, but constructive criticism is all I'm going to pay attention to.
Kyo had been in detention before. He had been in detention plenty of times before. He was used to it. But this, he was not used to. There were a few other students in detention today, Arisa Uotani among them. This was hardly her first time in detention either, though she didn't end up there nearly as much as Kyo. This wasn't even the first time they were there at the same time.
"Ok, detainees." The teacher in charge of watching those in detention grinned. "Let's see who we have and who we should have. Shinji Atama," he looked at the student in question as he marked him there. "Here for talking back to a teacher. Katsu Gandowara," he marked the next student off, "for fighting. Kyo Sohma, welcome back." He smirked at Kyo. "For... public display of affection!" He stared, open-mouthed at Kyo. That was what Kyo wasn't used to. He had never thought he would have a hard time with that. "They must've marked this wrong. What did you do Kyo?"
"I displayed affection in public. Just like it says."
He stared at Kyo. The rest of the students were staring too. While most of the female population of the school had a crush on him, no one had ever gotten close to him. His reputation as a loner was well known.
"Um, ok then. Next, Jin Tanaka, for fighting with Katsu. And finally Arisa Uotani, another regular, for..." the teacher blinked at the paper. Then rubbed his eyes and looked again. He went so far as to clean his glasses. Arisa just smiled. "Uotani Arisa, for public display of affection."
Now everyone was staring at Arisa. They all could put two and two together, but never would've put those two together. Kyo smiled. 'Now they know. My reputation is probably ruined. See if I care.'
"Miss Uotani, is this correct?"
"Well if they caught Kyo for that it makes sense that they'd catch whoever it was he was displaying affection for, and since I'm the only girl here..." She shrugged. "Unless you think he's gay or was making out with himself."
She looked over at Kyo, smiling. The reactions they'd get would be some of the most fun they'd had all year.
"Ah, I get it," the teacher said. "You two were just trying to cause trouble. It's just a practical joke you guys stopped arguing for."
"You think so?" Arisa looked at him.
"Er, well..." He looked from Arisa to Kyo. "I am right, aren't I Kyo?"
Kyo shrugged. "It makes no difference to me what you think."
"Are you two going out or not?" Katsu demanded.
Kyo and Arisa smiled at each other. "Think what you want," Arisa smiled.
"They're not going to give us a straight answer," the teacher sighed. "All right, everyone quiet. Detention has officially begun."
Kyo smiled as he thought about the beautiful blond girl on the other end of the room. The teacher had been wrong. He and Arisa were now officially an item, and just happened to be caught being an item. This morning Kyo never would've imagined how terrific the day would turn out.
"Kyo! You have to get up or else you won't be able to have breakfast before school," Tohru called from the bottom of the stairs.
"Oh, let him starve," Kyo heard Yuki's voice. "That moron won't die from skipping breakfast."
"What did you call me, rat!" Kyo called back down.
"Will you all please be quiet?" Shigure called. "I'm trying to do research for my next novel."
"Oh, I'm so sorry!" Tohru bowed as Kyo appeared at the top of the stairs.
"Research?" Yuki asked. "What sort of research do your books-" Kyo followed Yuki into Shigure's study, where he was watching a fashion show, currently displaying bathing suits on skinny little blond women.
"Shigure, you perv!" Kyo said. "What kind of research is this!"
"Obviously, you've never read my novels," Shigure said, eyes never leaving the TV.
"You're pathetic," Kyo huffed. "All those blonds look the same."
"Oh, and I suppose you don't like any blonds?" Shigure asked.
"As a matter of fact --" An image of Uo appeared in his mind. That damn yankee was so frustrating! "-- that's right. I can't think of a single blond I like."
"But what about Uo?" Tohru asked. "She's nice."
"Yeah, well, not to me. That damn yankee is the worst of all." Of course, unlike those on the TV, at least Uo looked individual, not just another blond. And she had a personality. A personality that caused her and Kyo to constantly argue. But arguing with her was better than arguing with that rat, Yuki. At least with Uo he could look at a cute girl while arguing.
Kyo shook the thought from his head. Uo was not cute. The only reason he hadn't killed her is because she's Tohru's friend.
"Let's go," Kyo grumbled.
"What about breakfast?" Tohru asked.
"Are you not feeling well?" she asked worriedly.
"I'm fine. Just not hungry."
"If you leave now you'll be way early," Yuki said.
Kyo shrugged and left the house.
Kyo trudged in the general direction of the school, letting his legs go on their own while his mind was elsewhere. Why did Uo have this affect on him? They did nothing but argue, and she knew just how to get under his skin. While he always got to her as well, she always seemed much more collected. Like she was in charge of every situation, and nothing could ever change that.
He had to admit, she certainly did have a way with people. No matter who she was with, she stuck out. She was always so friendly and helpful to Tohru that you might think she took a back seat to Tohru whenever they were together, if you didn't know her better. Kyo remembered catching her crying once at Tohru's simple determination, though when he saw she quickly passed it off as dust in her eye. Around Yuki's fan club she got plain scary, but still always calm. Not so much because of Yuki, but because they had made Tohru their enemy. Around her other friends, Hana and the other Sohmas, she was always friendly, though with the Sohmas she seemed a little distant. Like, she had a hard time opening up to them and trusting them, though she probably wanted to. Kyo had heard various stories about her that might explain that aspect. He knew she had been in a gang, and had heard that when she quit those she had called friends beat her up quite badly. He had also heard that her father drank heavily, though that was limited to rumor.
And then of course, there was how she acted around him. She seemed much more open to him than to anyone else, other than Hana and Tohru. But that didn't stop them from arguing all the time. Sometimes, though, Kyo would swear that Uo enjoyed fighting with him. And even when they were fighting, Kyo never felt the anger for her that he felt for Yuki. While she could get him upset, quite easily even, it never really left him with any hard feelings. As a matter of fact, the more he argued with her, the more he got used to it and didn't mind so much. Unlike with Yuki where the more he argued with him the more he wanted to wound him.
Okay, after thinking about it Kyo really couldn't deny to himself that he didn't dislike Uo. But just because he didn't dislike her didn't mean he liked her, right? After all, he was living with Tohru, and he liked her a lot. Tohru was kind, attractive, so naive it was funny, and ever optimistic. Admittedly, he might have found Uo a little more attractive. Okay, a lot more attractive. But there was more to liking someone than looks. Uo was argumentative, violent, and sarcastic.
Of course, he didn't really mind the arguing. And she had never been violent to him, all their exchanges stopping at words. But still, she could be very violent. If anyone ever threatened Tohru, Uo would take them down. Or if they threatened any other of her friends for that matter. Or if they had done something to deserve it, even if it wasn't to her friends. Okay, so she wasn't so much violent as it was that she had a strong sense of justice and wasn't afraid to enforce it. Actually, now that sounded more like a virtue than a vice. She was still sarcastic. That just seemed to be her way of communicating, except to Hana and Tohru. And she was only rudely sarcastic to those who hadn't earned any better. And she was blunt to everyone, no matter what.
The more Kyo thought about it, the more he respected her. She was a really good friend and a very determined enemy. Kyo was happy he was on her good side. Even though they argued all the time, she obviously didn't dislike Kyo, so that counted as her good side, right?
Still, Tohru was the one he liked. She had accepted him, even knowing the full extent of the curse. Of course, she was friendly to everyone, even if they weren't friendly to her, so there was no telling if she liked him from that. And she was easy to talk to, like Shishou. She was as fun loving as Momiji, and very easy to get along with.
When she had first arrived, Kyo had had a huge crush on her. Although that had gradually faded, when she chased after him in his monster form he had grown to respect her a hundred times more than before. But despite that respect, his heart didn't pound harder when she was around, and his breath didn't catch in his throat. Kyo thought that meant he had gone from crush to love, but if he were in love with Tohru why would seeing Uo get his adrenalin going? And he could hardly imagine himself kissing Tohru, while sometimes it took all he had in him to keep from imagining kissing Uo. Maybe... maybe he wasn't in love with Tohru. Perhaps when his crush faded he was left with just friendship. Extremely strong friendship; he would never let anyone harm Tohru, and he would trust her with his life, but maybe that didn't constitute love? He felt much the same for Tohru as he did for Shishou, though he hadn't realized the similarity because she was a girl. She really was more like a sister than a soul mate.
So did that mean he should just accept whatever he wants to feel about Uo? Did his body want to be more than friends with her? Kyo shook the thought from his head. Just because he wasn't in love with Tohru didn't mean he was in love with Uo. He couldn't be. He refused to believe it.
"Well look who's on time for once," Uo said as Kyo approached the school. "Early even. I never thought it possible for you Kyon-Kyon."
"Don't call me that, damn yankee!"
"So what are you doing here early, Orangey?"
"I don't have to answer you, yankee!"
Uo shrugged. "Suit yourself. And you know, you really do need to come up with something new to call me. At least I have a couple of different insults for you."
"How about your name? No one would expect that."
"Nah, everybody calls me Uo."
"I meant Arisa."
Uo put her finger on chin in a thoughtful manner. "I don't know. I might actually like that."
"Well that settles it. Me doing anything you like is bound to throw you off. Arisa it is." Kyo had always thought of her as Uo, or yankee, but Arisa was really a very pretty name. Kyo mentally slapped himself.
Uo chuckled. "You know, one might actually think you were being nice to me."
"Great, then I'm not just throwing you off, I'm throwing the whole planet off." Kyo grinned evilly. How their conversation had turned so... civil he had no idea. "Anyway, what are you doing here early?"
Arisa shrugged. "I dunno. Wanted to get out of the house," she looked down at her feet. Kyo had the feeling he had hit a sensitive spot. Had her father been drinking? Had he hurt her? Seeing Arisa like that, somehow it made him want to go and hold her, tell her everything would be alright.
"Everything ok at home?"
Arisa shrugged again. "Nah, it's none of your business."
"Hey, my friend's business is my business."
She looked up at him, a small smirk on her face. "So I'm your friend?"
Kyo paused. "Well, I mean, um, sure. Well, more along the lines of a good acquaintance. I mean, we're both friends of Tohru's, so friend of a friend."
"Yeah. So then I suppose that makes Yuki your friend too?"
"That rat! Hell no, I hate him. Family doesn't count for friend of a friend," Kyo said angrily. "Besides, he's not nearly as cute as you are." Kyo slapped his hand over his mouth. What was it doing talking without his permission? Probably the same thing all his stray thoughts did when he didn't watch it.
"Cute? You think I'm cute?"
"Well, compared to Yuki anyone is cute," he covered quickly.
"Then why slap your hand over your mouth? It's okay if you're too frightened to admit you like me," she smiled, rocking back on her feet.
"Hey, I'm not scared of anything!"
"Oh yeah?" she stepped up next to him.
"Yeah!" he yelled right at her face, practically bumping her head. She was so close to him. He could feel her breathing, and feel that he wasn't.
"Yeah right," she turned from him.
"I'll prove it!" Before she could do anything she found herself turned around as Kyo pressed his lips against hers.
He parted from her after a moment. She stayed standing there, head tilted and eyes closed. After a moment she opened her eyes, and put her finger to her lips. "Why... why did you kiss me?"
Kyo wasn't entirely sure himself. He couldn't believe he had gone that far. Kyo could hardly deny he liked her now. The cat was out of the bag. "To... prove a point. You said I was afraid to admit I liked you. Well, I admit it. I like you."
"You kissed me to show you aren't scared of me!" Arisa looked angrily at him, fist balled up. "A kiss should mean more than-"
"You didn't listen Arisa!" he said over her. Hearing her name caused her to stop. "I didn't kiss you to prove to you that I'm not afraid of you. I kissed you to prove I like you. Because I do like you. And I've... wanted to do that for a while. I just wouldn't admit it to myself." A part of his mind still didn't want to admit it. He wanted to blame it on something he had eaten for breakfast, but he hadn't had breakfast and the majority of his mind was electrified with the experience. His desire to kiss her again far outweighed his desire to run and deny it ever happened.
Arisa stopped. "So then... that kiss meant...?" She paused, unsure of how to phrase it. Kyo nodded slowly. Now that she knew, what would she do? Could they ever just be friends again? Would she accept him? Avoid him? Kyo regretted having ever acted on his feelings. "In that case I'm not going to hit you."
Kyo looked up. That was a least a vaguely good sign. "What are you going to do?"
Arisa smiled. "This." She leaned forward and captured Kyo's lips with her own. This time the kiss was reciprocated. Kyo decided regretting kissing her had been a bad idea. This was far better than he ever would've expected.
They parted for a moment. "So, does this mean we're..." Kyo stopped.
"Dating? Boyfriend and girlfriend? An item?" She smiled. "If you have no earth shattering problems with that, then yes. I'd like that."
Kyo nodded. Akito could be a problem, but Kyo wasn't about to worry about him. He'd cross that bridge when he came to it. "Well then, Arisa, consider me your boyfriend."
"You don't really have to call me that."
Kyo shrugged. "I know. But I like it. So, if it's ok with you?"
She nodded in return. "I like it." She went forward, arms beginning to reach around him.
Kyo quickly slipped out of her reach. "Um, sorry. No hugging." It hurt him to not let her, but he knew what would happen if she did.
She tilted her head at him. "We can kiss but we can't hug? That doesn't make any sense."
"I know. It's complicated. Maybe someday. But you have to promise me that you won't hug me. Not even teasing or anything like that." Kyo was surprised to be accepted as a human. Eventually he would like her to know everything, but after accepting him like this he would wait before trying to get her to accept a cat.
She was about to laugh when she saw how serious he was. "Okay," she agreed. "I promise not to hug you, if you'll promise to tell me why someday."
Kyo nodded. "Someday, but probably not soon," he said sadly. He would look forward to that day, but he couldn't rush it. "But I think this will make up for it for now..." he leaned forward and kissed her again, letting himself be absorbed in the taste of her lips.
And that was how he got into detention. No one saw them there before school, but they found that they bumped into each other a lot more between classes today than usual. And Kyo just couldn't resist the beautiful creature before him every time that happened. He looked over to her, imagining walking her home today. She smiled pleasantly. Akito be damned and screw the curse, he would make things work. For her.