Dark Nadeshiko Hey everyone! It's been a while hasn't it? I'm sorry for those that are waiting for me to add another chapter to 'Sakuno's Inner Calling'. I'm working on the end of the second chapter, this time, with Rikkai Dai. Featuring Yukimura in short shorts, Sanada contemplating homosexuality, and Bunta with pink hair.

As you've probably realized, I LOVE Rikkai Dai. Especially Sanada, Yagyuand Akaya. Sighs

In almost all of the fics I've read with Sakuno, she's portrayed as submissive and basically a push over. I like to imagine her as someone with spunk, deep down. Okay, okay, deep, deep, deep down.

Enjoy! I've changed my writing style a bit since my last fic, so I welcome all comments and or suggestions.

Outside the fenced area of the tennis courts, Sakuno clutched a picnic hamper to her chest, awaiting the end of the practice session between Rikkai Dai and Seigaku's tennis teams.

Ever since Seigaku won the nationals, practice sessions were constantly scheduled between the two competitive schools. It was not unusual to see Yukimura and Fuji debating the various methods of growing cactus, or Kirihara and Echizen competing in various trivial tasks. It was an unspoken agreement between both teams that Inui and Renji must never be allowed to bring any liquids other than water into the courts.

Sakuno was the official caretaker of the rowdy teens whenever her grandmother wasn't available to supervise them, meaning she reminded them to eat and drink. Ever since Sanada and Tezuka had to lug Kikumaru and Niou to the nurse after they collapsed from hunger, she forced (or rather Tezuka and Sanada did) everyone to take water breaks every hour and talk over food after practice instead of lingering around.

A shrill whistle pierced the air. "End of practice." Tezuka barked, "Pack up and meet in the cafeteria."

Sakuno quietly let herself into the courts, usually a danger zone for her, since all airborne tennis balls seemed to have a magnetic attraction towards her.

"Sakuno-chaaaan!" Bunta bounced over to her. They had become instant friends once he got a taste of her strawberry shortcake.

"Ah, B-B-Bunta-san." She scolded herself for sounding to foolish. "Here you go." She held out the picnic basket.

"Sankyuu Sakuno-chan!" He dug eagerly into it contents, finding a variety of cakes. "Oh, there's everything! Chocolate, vanilla-"

"Ano, Bunta-san." Sakuno twisted her hem nervously, "I know that this is rather stupid, but-"

"-cheesecake, and strawberry-"

"-but, I feel kinda strange whenever you're around. So-"

"-and mango, lemon meringue-"

She clutched her trembling hands together, "-so I realize that I really, really like-"

"-you even made tiramisu! And black forest too!"

Sakuno twitched and snatched the basket away from his grasp, "I love you!" She yelled. Collective gasps could be heard from all corners of the courts. She stood there panting, waiting in anticipation, along with everyone else in the vicinity.

Bunta blinked, "…You know. You're really cute when you're angry." He reached into the hamper and pulled out a fruit encrusted cake. Languidly, he took a bite, all the while studying her face. He wondered if her red cheeks were out of habit or a natural reaction to any compliments.

He swallowed the last of the cake and sighed in contentment, "I really, really, like, love you too Sakuno."

Sakuno blushed and closed her eyes as the entire area eurupted in cheers and general applause. Ignoring the cat-calls and wolf whistles, Bunta grinned and leant down to her level.

She felt a warm hand cover hers, and the welcome smell of his green apple breath ghosting over her face.

"…Can I have the basket now?"

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