A/N: Just thought i ought to let you all know that there will be a bit of shonen-ai (gay love) in this fic but kissing is the most you'll come across no lemon or lime or yaio or whatever you want to call it. Just thought i'd give everyone the heads up. Please enjoy!
Rumours are a Guys Worst Friend
"They're talking about us again" Kurogane growled as he scuffed through his locker. His best friend Fai sighed looking surreptitiously over his shoulder at Tomoyo and her group of giggling friends. While some of them looked away in embarrassment she smiled back with warm purple eyes unabashedly unashamed at meeting his gaze. She, like him, was one of the richer kid's at school her mother being the president of the very popular Piffle Princess toy company. She indulged in any of the any of the many rumours that circulated through the school each year. That and textiles classes where she was known to create fashionable outfits with skill far beyond her 17 years. This year her pet rumour was that Kurogane and Fai were sharing more than chips and cheat sheets at lunchtime. Much more. Fai rolled his blue eyes with an air of boredom turning back to the contents of his own locker.
"You think they'd have better things to do with their time then run around giggling and whispering, bloody Tomoyo!" Kurogane said as he slammed his locker shut, lunch in one hand and a soccer ball in the other.
"It's too early in the year for study groups there's not enough homework to keep them occupied either" Fai commented as he closed his locker "The girls will drop this soon enough"
"Like when you get a girlfriend" Kurogane sniggered taking a bite out of his sandwich as they began to make their way down to the school oval.
"Shouldn't you be the one getting the girls, after all you are the resident 'badboy', Black dog" Fai said in a teasing tone, beginning to munch on his apple.
"Shut up! And how many times do I have to tell you?! Now more than ever don't call me black dog!" Kurogane snapped punching Fai boisterously.
"Are you going to play today?" Kurogane asked finishing off the sandwich. Just as Fai opened his mouth to answer a girl with light brown hair ran past them.
"Come on Fai-san! Kurogane-san! We'll miss the start of the game!" it was one of the few girls who played soccer with them at lunch time; Sakura. She was an athletic yet clumsy girl with a lot of spirit who Kurogane had dubbed Princess of the Soccer field during one of her less impressive games. She enjoyed the excitement of the game and always seemed to brighten the mood of the team with her optimism. Today she was extra bubbly, a good sign for the outlook of the game. After a brief look at his watch Kurogane realized they were in fact running late and swiftly followed after her but Fai maintained his slower pace.
"Not today Kuro-black! For the sake of killing the rumours I think I might just sit and watch" Fai called after his friend. The pairs combined skill and closeness on the field such as high five-ing, praising each other and the occasional rowdy hug for a victory well fought was what had begun the ill-informed rumours.
"Oh come on!" Kurogane snarled in annoyance as he ran out onto the oval "Hey princess, Fatlip isn't playing!" Kurogane told Sakura knowing she would protest.
"Fai!" she called in a disappointed voice as their blond friend Fai sat down on the sidelines "Please play! We need you! Fuma and Kamui are playing with the other team today!!!"
"Don't worry, you can beat them!" Fai cheered as he started sipping on a can of coke.
"You wish" Kamui shouted his reply from across the other side of the oval.
"Lazy ass" Kurogane muttered as their team spread out across the field. Fai's expertise in sports was well known through out the school. His wiry figure and unusually calm composure for a nineteen year old had fooled many opposing teams into underestimating him as a weak point. His body was in fact perfect for dodging and weaving to score goals in any sport he played. Fai's talent wasn't restricted only to sports though. He was adept at many aspects of school life acing subjects like foreign language, cooking, art, literature and science. His intelligence and young appearance had also been a hindrance causing many boys to target him. However even this problem hadn't bothered Fai for too long fighting being counted as one of his concurred sports skills. Nothing seemed beyond him, what was beyond a lot of the students who knew him or knew of him was the reason why an A grade student and a school captain would be best friends with a boy like Kurogane.
The team screamed a cheer as the first goal of the game was taken by Kurogane. He wiped a blot of dirt from his face sneering as he returned to his side of the field his team shouting his praise. Kurogane's skills lay more with people than with subjects and he was hailed as the badboy of the school. He had been known to swear at teachers and students alike. His uniform matched his personality and was nearly always dishevelled and in disarray. He was exceptionally good at sports and kendo as well as fist fighting. Being scruffy with devilishly good looks together with Kurogane's personality marked him a rebel. Despite the dangerous image Kurogane had it was also known that he was a fiercely loyal and compassionate friend a fact that made him even more irresistible to the female population of the school.
"Alright black dog! Come on guys!" Fai shouted cheerily from the side line. Kurogane glared at him before kicking the ball into play. Sakura took it waving around some of the other team's players with ease then kicking it to Errol who passed it back to her. She lined up the goal as she closed in kicking it. The ball soared towards the oppositions goals but before the goal keeper could even leap for it Fuma blocked it and sent it right back.
"Come on Sakura, you can do it!" Fai shouted punching the air with his fist. Sakura's brow knitted with determination as she went for the goal again. As she drew closer once more Kamui managed to get the ball away from her and with an unprecedented amount of speed and ease landed the other teams first point. Fai sighed tuning out even as the fierce battle to win the game continued on. His gaze switched from player to player, a troubling matter being mulled over in his mind, before being trained to Kurogane's athletic form. The players dashed back and forth and before Fai knew it the game was over. It wasn't until Kurogane gave him a little shove and told him that the bell had rung that he came back from his wonderings.
"Hey Princess!" Kurogane called to Sakura as she had already started heading off to her next class "Tell your friend Tomoyo next time you see her to stop spreading stupid rumours! It's bad enough without her running around embellishing them!"
"Ok!" Sakura replied cheerily with a wave "See you two tomorrow!"
"Get up, we'll be late for English!" Kurogane said to Fai, who was still siting in the grass, then he continued in a sarcastic tone "We wouldn't want the school captain to be late, they might advise you not to hang out with me again" The year before an older boy had called Kurogane some unfavourable names which lead to a fight that Fai had joined in on to defend his friend. The conclusion of which was a suspension for Kurogane and a stern suggestion to Fai that he keep better company.
"You know I'll do what I like in the end no matter what they say, Black Smog, but I want to be on time so let's go" Fai replied as he stood then walked on. Kurogane followed curious at Fai's lack of talk about the game as usually they discussed improving strategy and badmouthed some of the opposition's players after soccer. After they had returned the ball to Kurogane's slightly over crowded locker Fai found his voice again snapping out of whatever was on his mind.
"So who won?" Fai enquired turning his gaze to Kurogane as they quickly walked to their second last class of the day.
"It was a draw. How can you zone out so completely?! Didn't you hear us complaining when the bell went?" Kurogane said with a frown.
"No, Sorry...well we'll get them tomorrow" Fai said smiling up at him as they arrived at their class room.
"You know I hate it when you do that" Kurogane growled as they entered the mostly filled chattering class room.
"Do what?" Fai said mischief in his eyes as he took a seat.
"Alright everyone! Quiet down! Kurogane please take a seat and get out your English text book" Their English teacher Mr. Seishirou ordered then turned around and began to write on the white board. Kurogane let his conversation with Fai go being forced to take a seat at the other side of the room as there were no seats left near Fai. Fai began pulling out his books and pencils when suddenly a whispered voice sprang up behind him.
"Hello Fai" he looked back coming face to face with a pretty doe eyed girl with long blond hair.
"Hi there Chi" Fai said kindly with a small wave.
"How is Fai today?" the little exchange student called Chi asked shyly. She had only recently come to their school but had already grown quite attached to Fai, talking to him more than any other student. She had even taken to walking around with him and asking him many questions in her broken English.
"I'm well and how are you?" he replied using a textbook answer he knew she would understand.
"I am good thank you" Chi answered with glee.
"That's good" Fai said and was about to continue when the teacher called out making him jump.
"Mr. Flowrite! I would appreciate it if you would save idle chit chat for outside the classroom" Though his tone was serious he wore a gentle smile, he was always lenient when Chi was involved as he knew it was important for her to practise speaking. Fai spun around immediately.
"Yes Mr. Sei- sir!" Fai said apologetically.
"Now Subaru can you please tell me which verb in this sentence is past perfect?" Mr. Seishirou said turning to his favourite student with a flourish. Subaru's face went a little red as he stuttered the answer making Kurogane groan audibly. The fact that something as obvious Subaru and Seishirou went un-noticed by Tomoyo and her bunch while he and Fai were hounded mercilessly for no good reason made Kurogane's skin crawl. Fai sniggered quietly at Kurogane's suggested complaint. After a while Kurogane texted Fai asking him if he was doing anything after school. Fai felt the silent buzzing in his pocket and pulled out his phone inconspicuously checking his message bank. He sighed at the note, disappointment evident in his reply.
"Sorry Black Dog, Ashura wants me home after school today" Kurogane read out Fai's response silently in his head. Fai hoped there would be no reply but as he glanced over at Kurogane he saw his hand hidden under the table typing on his small black phone. A minute later he received Kurogane's text.
"Can't you dump your stupid chores?! The Maganyan live action movie comes out today. The evil step mother wouldn't care! He loves you! He let's you get away with everything!"
Fai frowned, unimpressed. Fai had been adopted when he was 7 by a wealthy gentleman who had no children of his own. Ashura had doted on Fai and always treated him as his own child. His slightly feminine and gentle nature had therefore prompted the nickname 'step mother' the 'evil' to be added when Kurogane was particularly annoyed, a name which Fai abhorred.
"I told you don't call him that! And he doesn't let me get away with everything last time I skipped out on chores he asked me to do he grounded me"
Kurogane sneered roguishly.
"Yeah for like one day"
"No, Kurogane. Not today and I can't walk home with you either"
The text bout was stopped by Mr. Seishirou's final announcement for the lesson.
"Alright class, that's it for today and don't forget your essays on Romeo and Juliet are due in on Monday!" The class stood gathering their things.
"Do you have cooking next?" Chi asked softly her books clutched to her chest. Fai turned to her as they started to file out of the room.
"Yes I do" Fai said and Chi's face brightened up.
"Will you walk with me? I have it too" she explained before she continued apprehensively with "Chi does not know where to go for certain"
"Sure" Fai agreed, he looked back at Kurogane who was waiting to get out of the room "See you tomorrow Black puppy!"
Kurogane glared at him ferociously knowing some of the girls who were within hearing range were Tomoyo's gaggle and would no doubt tell their number one what Fai had just said in their very next class.
"Why does Kurogane look so mad?" Chi asked watching the angry boy as they walked away towards the home economics room.
"Because Kurogane especially hates being called Black puppy" Fai answered hurrying her along in case Kurogane tried to come after him.
"Then why do you call him that?" Chi asked looking up at Fai's smiling face.
"Because Kurogane especially hates being called Black Puppy" Chi blinked twice with a little frown.
"I do not understand"
"For you Chi" he said "That's alright" she smiled in embarrassment at her lack of understanding but Fai's tone told her it was ok. They walked in silence till they reached the home economics room.
The outline of a vein began to pop out on Kurogane's forehead as he twitched with agitation. It had only been 10 minutes of Japanese and he already couldn't stand the audible whispers that were issuing from the back of the room.
"So Fai really called him Black puppy? How cute!" Soma, one of Tomoyo's closest friends, gushed to the other girls around her.
"I know, I wish they would just get it over with and admit it!" another whispered excitably.
"How hot a couple would they make I mean Fai's such a babe and Kurogane" Kurogane felt the hairs on his neck bristle as he felt many gazes focused upon him.
"Well you know" he heard her finish, the end of their conversation all muffled giggles. Slightly smug but more annoyed he turned his attention to their Japanese teacher the beautiful Ashura-o. A person who had not till a few months after school had begun had revealed to the students his gender. Up until the end of first term Ashura-o's students revered their teacher as the most gorgeous and graceful woman they had ever met. However once Ashura-o turned up to Parent teacher night in a suit, hair tied back and makeup-less the students realized Ashura-o was not what they had originally thought. He seemed to genuinely enjoy the looks of shock and blush that spread across some of the boys and girls faces during the fated interviews.
"Alright everyone I want you all to chose a partner and practise speaking Japanese to each other. I want full conversations and I will be coming around to listen to your pronunciation and vocabulary so I hope you studied hard last night" he announced and the class stood beginning to shift seats and shuffle about chatting. Soma turned to Tomoyo with a smile.
"Want to be my part-" before she could finish a hand slammed down on Tomoyo's desk making the two girls jump.
"Tomoyo, you're my partner" Kurogane announced his rough voice reaching Ashura-o's ears.
"Very good Kurogane, you will be with Tomoyo then" he said writing it down in his book. Tomoyo's eyes broke away from Kurogane's red glare to look at Soma.
"Well I suppose it's me and Kurogane then, sorry Soma" she apologised and Soma stood making room for Kurogane to sit down.
"That's fine, see you later" she replied, concern in her voice as she left to find another partner.
"Care to take a seat?" Tomoyo asked politely, her manners a shining example of why Kurogane disliked her so much. Having been brought up in a more wealthy family she always spoke in a proper manner a trait that came off as arrogance and superiority in Kurogane's eyes. He also found it utterly infuriating that she could be completely honest with someone while dealing them a warm smile no matter what the matter it was that was being discussed. He sat down, turned to her and began to reel off a few phrases as Ashura-o was passing by. Once their teacher was out of hearing range though, Tomoyo asked him the question he had expected her to.
"What is the reason you chose me as your partner?" she said calmly. He grinned, he had been waiting for this for weeks.
"I wanted to go to the source of my problems to see if I could resolve them" he replied earnestly.
"And what problem is that?" Tomoyo questioned putting away some of her notes.
"The problem is that these stupid rumours of yours are interfering with my life" he answered. He had longed for an opportunity to get Tomoyo alone so he would be able to convince her the rumours were fallacies. If he could convince her they weren't true and to leave Fai and him alone the others would soon follow suit.
"They are not mine, I did not fabricate them but if I had I would stand by them because I believe they are true" she said her voice firm and sure.
"What if I told you right here and right now that the rumours are false? Would you believe me?" Kurogane asked.
"Why not? I should know if they are or not" he scoffed.
"Because there is so much evidence to suggest otherwise" she replied softly.
"What evidence?!" Kurogane exclaimed.
"The soccer games"
"You go to any soccer field in the world and you will find players hugging each other and running around together and are often even shirtless. They can't all be hot for each other. They're teammates! That's what teammates do" he explained calmly.
"Your practically inseparable"
"So are you and Soma"
"Not many guys are as close as you two though. There was that time…" for the first time since the start of their conversation Tomoyo's eyes looked down.
"I was walking to school and it started raining…just before I got to school I saw you two through the rain. You were hugging" she gave up the story reluctantly as she knew it must've been an important and personal moment. It was Kurogane's turn to avert his gaze. After a moment he looked up again.
"You will have to come up with more than that Piffle Princess" he said in a low voice waiting. He wanted to counter every suggestion she had so it would leave no doubt in her mind, though memories from that morning about a year ago were still playing through his mind.
"The names you call each other" Tomoyo offered.
"Fatlip and Black dog? Hardly loving or caring" he countered then remembered his English class and decided since they were asking the questions he might as well throw that one in "Tell me some thing Tomoyo, how is it that you can ignore something as completely obvious as Seishirou and his pet Subaru but you won't leave the subject of me and Fai alone? Subaru is at that teachers beck and call, blushes every time they speak and is a reck of girly nerves after every English class but when Fai and me high-five it's school wide news?"
"Ah the answer to that is simple. Mr. Seishirou and Subaru are not in denial" she answered the question he had been so curious about but it was not as satisfying as he thought it would be "If I went up to Subaru tomorrow and asked him who he loved most or he was most attracted to in this school he would no doubt say Seishirou. If I went up to Seishirou and asked him who his favourite student is he would no doubt say Subaru. They make no attempt to hide it. Except maybe from the school board. While they would make a stunning couple they will have to wait till next year when Subaru has graduated"
"Me and Fai are not in denial. We have nothing to deny" Kurogane said firmly.
"You deny you share a great bond"
"I don't deny we share friendship, loyalty and trust. If one of us gets into a fight the other will fight for them. We stick up for each other"
"The corner stones of every good loving relationship" Tomoyo replied gently.
"Just because I care about Fai does not mean I love him" Kurogane replied his voice rough and irritated.
"In the end only you can tell what you truly feel, but I think you should have a long think about what that is" Tomoyo said softly a tone of concern in her voice. The way she spoke infuriated Kurogane she sounded as though she pitied him. He couldn't accept she believed so firmly that he loved Fai that he might even be having an internal struggle over it and that he should be felt sorry for because of it. Kurogane stood starting Tomoyo and getting the attention of the rest of the class and the teacher.
"You should keep your opinions to yourself" he spat.
"Kuro-!" Soma began standing but he had already walked passed Tomoyo and was shoving the classrooms door open.
"Kurogane!" Ashura-o growled but all he got as Kurogane slammed the door behind him was a muffled
As Kurogane left the school, his bag full of homework on his back he felt the anger beginning to ebb away. The place was quiet as there was still ten minutes left of school and he was the only student walking along the pavement. He wondered what Tomoyo could have been thinking as she said those words. He questioned why she would intrude upon his life like she was, in such a rude fashion and for the first time since Tomoyo and his argument he thought of Fai. He had been avoiding thoughts of his best friend as much as he could but he wanted to do what Tomoyo had suggested. Kurogane wanted to see if he could ask himself how he really felt. He would have brushed off the idea before but a strange uncertainty had come over him at Tomoyo's arguments. His mind traced over the events he had shared with Fai and the time they had spent together right up until recent times and it was then he realised something. He realized that the reason why he and Fai had been so stressed lately was the rumours that had been going on about them. The reason for his uncertainty was not an undiscovered love it was the peer pressure suggestion that there was. Kurogane surmised that if he were to stop the stupid rumours both he and Fai would be able to get on with what they were doing. They would be able to play soccer together, play pranks on each other and call each other names without being pestered about it. Kurogane stoped in his tracks. A roguish smile played across his lips and a spark ignited in his eyes as a plan leapt to mind. A plan to make those girls drop their rumours. He sniggered as he walked on feeling the cares of the day wash away in his clever new plan.
A/N: I hope everyone enjoyed the first chapter of this story, i know it's long but it's easy reading. I've never written in this style before so i hope its not done too badly lol. A preview for next chapter you say? What, oh what, will Kuro do to get those girls of his and fai's back? That ought to do as a preview XD Reviews are not just love but motivation XD Thank you!