Nothing Out of the Ordinary

Disclaimer: I don't own Prince of Tennis.

Ok first I must apologize for the two different formating on this chapter but I promise it won't happen next chapter.

Much thanks to Forochel for betaing for me!

Chapter 1

Echizen Ryoma stared indifferently down at the busy city of Tokyo below him as he stifled a yawn. Every city was the same, too full of loud people and tall buildings. They all seemed to blend together as one traveled from one building to the next; never stopping to actually develop any attachment. A small tug on his pants made the boy glance down at his visitor and his face softly sightly as he reached down to pick up Karupin, his one and only companion.

"So what do you think, Karupin? Any better than the last city?" he murmured as he swung him around the balcony to give him a good look. The cat just closed his eyes and snuggled closer to his owner's chest, purring contentedly.

"What kind of an answer is that?" the dark-haired boy grumbled as he took one last look at the scene below him before turning and heading back into his hotel room.

"Oi, stop daydreaming, boy! You have another interview this afternoon for Tennis Pro Monthly Magazine and this time you had better answer their questions instead of just smirking at them." his baka oyaji ordered as he walked up to the bed and deposited his cat onto it.

"Well at least I don't drool while staring at the female reporters' chests." Ryoma shot back, annoyed at having a pervert for a father.

His mother rolled her eyes and glared at her husband from her spot in the armchair near the door. Rinko was currently busy over the phone with a niece, who apparently lived in Tokyo and had invited them for a visit. Echizen had never met his cousin before, since this was his first time in Tokyo, but his mother told him she was a sweet, gentle girl and his father had started daydreaming when they talked about her so apparently she was good looking too. He hoped they had enough time in this city to go see her.

His old man had finally gotten over the glare his wife was giving him and went back to reading his dirty magazine newspaper. As his father started humming happily, Ryoma sighed and reached down to pick up his tennis bag.

"I'm bored, play me," Ryoma demanded of his father, tossing a tennis ball at his head. Without looking up, Nanjiroh reached out with one hand and caught the tennis ball, flinging it back.

"I'm not here to entertain you boy, go practice by yourself." Nanjiroh replied. The former tennis legend then stuck his fingers in his ears and hummed loudly so that his son could no longer bother him. Ryoma scowled and tossed the tennis ball up in the air, catching it as it fell down again.

"Go ahead and practice if you want honey," his mother spoke up from across the room, "Just make sure you're back here in time for your interview."

Echizen nodded and left the room with a muttered "Mada mada dane." Once he exited the hotel, the bustle of the city which he had stood above when on his balcony, now surrounded him. For a moment, being a stranger in the middle of the unknown metropolis overwhelmed him and he just stared. Then the familiar and comfortable weight of his tennis bag on his shoulder gave him the confidence he needed.

He was Echizen Ryoma, after all. The up-and-coming future legend of the tennis world. Samurai Junior, on the cusp of greatness. It was the city that should look out for him. The smug smirk back on his face, he stalked off down the busy streets in search of a tennis court.

Echizen Ryoma, future legend of the tennis world was currently lost. Of
course he would never admit that to anyone, so he settled for an indifferent
look. He had wandered around for awhile looking for a tennis court but eventually
gave up in frustration. That was when he realized he didn't know where he
was. He briefly contemplated stopping a passer-by and asking for
directions but then a familiar thud sound reached his ears and he turned to
a stairway leading to what he now knew was a street court.

Slowly he made his way up the stairs to see a tennis court with four boys a
little older then himself playing doubles. A sneer crossed his face
unconsciously, his father had always played singles and Ryoma himself
couldn't ever imagine letting another player take credit for a game he could
play on his own. Although it was interesting to watch the pairs work
together. Echizen had never really had any contact with other kids his age
except for inept rivals and irritating fangirls. You couldn't really talk to either, since the former was always a rotten loser and the latter screamed and fainted if you came near them. He always wondered what it would be like to go to a school full of kids and have friends whom you
could hang out with. It might be nice to have someone to play tennis
against all the time, apart from one's annoying father who always beat you anyway.

Ryoma stopped fantasizing after a moment and looked closer at the game on
the court. It was then he realized that this was not a normal doubles game.
On one side of the court a mountain, which he surmised was a young man, was
holding his own against the two boys on the other side of the court. The
large boy's companion was actually sitting on the court with a smug smirk on
his face, letting his partner do all the work. The boys on the other side
obviously were incensed by this, and were trying hard to hit the ball at the
sitting player. They didn't appear to be very good at playing doubles
together, often going for the same ball together, and they were yelling
at each other a lot. Then again, maybe that's what friends did, Echizen
pondered. The tall boy with spiky black hair had a powerful shot and the
redhead playing with him was very fast on his feet. Either one might be fun
to play for a diversion, and playing them together might actually give him a
challenge. He watched as the redhead dived low to get the ball and
accidentally lobbed it into the back of his partner's head by mistake. Nah,
no real challenge there.

That was when he felt a poke on his shoulder. Turning around, he stared
blankly at the smiling brown-haired girl who waved at him. "Hi, did you
come to play tennis?"

Relieved the girl hadn't fainted or screamed at him, Ryoma merely shrugged
and turned back to the game. He had wanted to practice, but not doubles and
certainly not against any of the opponents he could see at the moment.
However, even if he had dismissed the girl, she wasn't quite done with him.

Another poke came at his shoulder, and he glared when he turned around this
time. "What?"

"You look familiar, have we met before?" the girl tilted her head to one
side in thought and Ryoma inwardly winced expecting any moment the girl to
start screaming in his ear once she recognized that he was the Echizen
Ryoma. However both of them were interrupted by a loud triumphant yell on
the court.

Turning back to the court Echizen quickly realized what had happened- the
tall spiky-haired boy had somehow managed to hit a shot past the breathing
wall. It was probably due to the fact that he had aimed right at the
sitting boy's head, barely missing him. For whatever reason the game stopped
while the smug boy on the ground took his time standing up and brushing
himself off. Finally the egotistical boy declared their game over and asked
the tall boy for his name.

"Momoshiro Takeshi, Seigaku Second Year." Came the proud reply.

The purple haired diva acknowledged it with a nod and called his huge
companion over. The redhead chased after him and yelled his
own name, Akira something, and where did he get off leaving without asking
about him? The diva merely waved him off.

Ryoma watched the whole spectacle with a bored expression while the
girl standing next to him seemed annoyed with the events. He didn't even
blink when the diva and his walking mountain stopped in front of him to
look him over.

"Well, well, well," the boy drawled out in amusement, "An actual challenge
on the tennis court. Ore-sama looks forward to beating you." Ryoma stared
blankly at the other boy, inwardly rolling his eyes, wondering why every
idiot with a tennis racquet had the following assumptions: One, that they were better than
him. Two, it was their mission in life to show him.

When Echizen gave the diva no reply, the taller boy merely chuckled and snapped
his fingers, bringing the semi-intelligent boulder to his side as they left in a
grand exit.

"Idiot," Ryoma muttered under his breathe and was surprised to find the
other three people on the court agreeing with him.

"That baka! How dare he not ask my name! Doesn't he realize a doubles game
involves two people- besides that I was by far the superior player over bike
stealer here." the red head grumbled.

"I didn't steal your bike! Get over it already! Anyway, Tachibana's little sister,
are you alright?" the tall boy, Momoshiro asked the nosy girl gently.

The girl nodded. "I'm fine, Momo. Thank you both for helping me out."

"No problem Ann-chan, anything for you," Akira babbled. Ryoma smirked;
this boy was obsessed. He was suddenly aware of the sensation of being watched. Looking over, he noticed that he had now become the center
of attention. It looked like a good time to make an exit.

"Excuse me." he muttered as he brushed past "Ann-chan" on his way out of the
courts, but apparently he wasn't getting out so easy.

"Wait, who are you really?" Ann questioned, grabbing his arm.

"How come Atobe recognized you- do you play tennis in one of the nearby
schools?" Momo asked at the same time.

"Why were you and Ann-chan talking for such a long time before?" the redhead

Echizen took in all their questions and came to the conclusion that it was
definitely time to go. Easily breaking the hold the girl had on his arm he
muttered an apology and stalked off before the others could react. He now
had a glimpse into what the average kid his age acted like and definitely
was not impressed.

"What a brat." Momo commented after the boy who walked away.

"He seemed so familiar," Ann mused, then brightened and tapped her lips,
"Well, at least he was cute."

"Ann-chan!" the resulting scream could be heard a couple miles away.