.bliss...

He sees them – two prominent figures on the other side of the fence -- one in the red on blue on white of a Seigaku Regular's jersey, the other in white and green and with that ever present notebook that he holds open in his hands. They stand together, seemingly unaware of each other's presence, watching intently as Ryoma skillfully returns Momoshiro's Dunk Smash with surprising ease – one with that ever-present smile on his face, the other with a seriously attentive expression – both unreadable.

He watches them, watches the way Fuji-senpai's smile would widen somewhat at nothing in particular every time his companion would bend down to scribble a statistic on his notebook; watches the way Inui-senpai would falter not quite noticeably every time the tensai would smile just so, not as oblivious to the other's presence as he would have others believe.

They seem to be talking now though, carefully chosen words softly spoken, which may or may not have anything to do with the recently concluded match. And he wonders if it's just his imagination or doesn't Fuji-senpai's smile seem more sincere, Inui-senpai's smirk less non-committal? Inui-senpai closes his notebook then, pockets the pencil he'd been fiddling with, adjusts his glasses almost in afterthought, turns to leave and somehow, he thinks he may have run too many laps if he were actually thinking that… But then Fuji-senpai says something, something that halts Inui-senpai in his tracks, something that has him turning around, waiting for the tensai to continue. And when Fuji-senpai reaches up, one hand resting on Inui-senpai's shoulder, to whisper directly in the other's ear, and when Inui-senpai actually lets him, actually just stands there and allows Fuji-senpai's touch to linger a bit longer, and when Fuji-senpai actually lets go, begins to walk away with something akin to smugness in his gait, and when Inui-senpai follows…

He looks away.

And he wonders what it is about what he saw that leaves a bitter taste in his mouth and makes him want to puke, what it is about watching Inui-senpai and Fuji-senpai together that leaves a sick feeling at the pit of his stomach...

They pass him by, seemingly, apparently unintentional, but when he greets them out of habit (after all, they were still his senpai) and when Inui-senpai glances up and he glimpses his senpai's eyes behind those thick-framed glasses and sees something in them that shouldn't be there, and when Fuji-senpai commends him on his well-played match, eyes wide open as though there was something he knew that the rest of the world wasn't privy to, and when he sees the same something in the tensai's eyes… And when the two of them start walking away in the direction of the locker rooms when he knew Inui-senpai had already gathered his things earlier, and when they sort of, not quite unconsciously drift towards each other, their arms barely touching, and when Fuji-senpai says something that makes Inui-senpai laugh openly, he feels that sick feeling at the pit of his stomach rise up to his throat, making it hard to breathe.

It hurts.

And Kaidoh thinks, sometimes, ignorance is bliss after all.

...end.