Disclaimer & Author's Notes: This is just a fan work based on the series H2, by Mitsuru Adachi. It offers one interpretation of a particular scene. It may or may not be what the original author intended to portray. (Actually, he probably specifically left it open to interpretation). H2 is my favourite manga series out of the 70+ ones that I have read. I highly recommend it for its gripping sports action, lively character interactions, and the subtle romance that weaves in and out of the narrative.


A Hero in my Bed

"Let me talk to Hiro."

"He's not here," my mother said over the phone.

"He's not? He hasn't come home yet?" That was strange. I thought Senkawa would have finished their meeting by now.

"No, it was too loud here for him to sleep. So he's sleeping at home."

Home?

"Home... where?" I asked, a strange suspicion starting to form at the back of my head.

"Home home," she said. The niggling suspicion became reality. "He's asleep in your bed."

I didn't wait to hear the rest. Hanging up, I rushed upstairs to my room and opened the door.

He was there.

He was sleeping quietly, on my bed, with his head buried in my pillow. I was too confused to decide whether I loved him or hated him for that.

Then I saw his hand.

It was worn and bruised after pitching for so long and so hard, against one team after another. I hadn't seen him since before the game with Mitakako. Because Meiwa and Hide-chan were also fighting for their place in the tournament, I wasn't there to watch his games, and could only hear about them via the radio. I never congratulated him, even though he pitched his best.

He looked so worn out. I could feel tears forming at the back of my eyes as I looked down on his sleeping body.

No, what am I thinking! I love Hide-chan. I do! Snap out of it! I slapped myself to change the direction my thoughts were heading and looked down at my childhood friend, who was like a younger brother to me.

He had really given it his all. He loved baseball so much. Whenever he played, you could feel your feelings soar with him... so much that he could bring you to tears, whether he won or lost. I was so proud of him. His dream of entering Koshien was finally a reality.

"Congratulations, Hiro," I told him.

I remembered why I came back home, and started collecting a change of clothes from my closet. Just when I had finished packing, a thump sounded from the bedside.

Hiro had fallen to the floor. That silly boy. He was always getting into scrapes and accidents like that, and I would have to go and pick him up.

Oh well.

"C'mon!" I said, trying to lift his body up. He was heavy - much heavier than he used to be, back in elementary school. Then, I could carry him easily.

But Hiro had grown and matured since then. He had finally caught up.

His weight was dragging me down, and I eventually slumped against the bedside, with his arms around me. We stayed like that, in the darkness, for a long time. I don't remember how long.

All I remember was the feel of his arms around me, and mine around his.

Eventually, I got up and managed to drag him back into bed, all without waking him up. Hide-chan was waiting for me, and I couldn't let him down.

Just before I closed the bedroom door, I took one last look at his sleeping form. Hiro was still unconscious to the world. He must have been really exhausted. My Hiro. The boy I grew up with, and the man that he had become. My hero was in my bed.

I knew this night would be forever engraved in my memory.

But he would never know.