A Fine, Fine Line

Everybody knew Aya Hoshino was Rei Otohata's girlfriend. Heck, they all knew the two were meant to be, and because of that all other guys who attempted to date the lovely brunette either got beaten up by the fiery Kotobuki or sent freezing to Hell by the Ice Prince's deadly glare. Nobody messed with the pretty angel, although everyone knew she was one of the finer catches in Shibuya from their generation.

So when Yuuya Asou went ahead and gave Hoshino a soft, lingering kiss just above the upper left corner of her lips, everyone knew his friendship with Otohata was officially over.


It all started with the phone calls.

Two years after college and almost six years of steady dating, Mami Honda left Yuuya to settle in New York permanently, a family arrangement that neither person had anticipated and thus failed to prepare for. They were all at the airport to send Mami off, and before boarding the private plane that the Hondas owned, she gave him a final kiss goodbye, with a promise that she'll try to visit as often as she could and an invitation for him to follow once he finished his board exams. Yuuya merely blinked and fought to smile bravely, and when the plane finally flew away he hurriedly walked past the group, despite the frantic calls of a certain supergal, who was immediately hushed by his older brother.

All of them were rather successful in their chosen paths, if not content, and going to different universities didn't stop them from continually meeting up and bonding on weekends. Ran Kotobuki, former number one gal in Shibuya, was now the hottest (if not craziest) junior police in their district, and everyone but herself must have expected it because no one looked surprised when she announced she was entering the force. Miyu Yamazaki now owned a small fashion accessories shop, co-managed by her fiancé Yamato Kotobuki, who earned a promotion a few years back. Tatsuki Kuroi opened his own small restaurant, and it has become a favorite hangout of the gang whenever they do one of their get-togethers. Yuuya Asou finished his course in Engineering on time and was currently reviewing for that year's Board Exams, and Rei Otohata opted to continue his pre-Law course and was now practicing in a small Law firm owned by one of his father's colleagues. Aya Hoshino, ever the honor student, finished her degree in Medicine with flying colors, and now she worked in Shibuya's biggest hospital as the assistant head doctor of the pediatrics department, a rather big accomplishment for someone her age.

She and Rei had been dating since college, and through the years everyone in the group saw the ice prince softened, if only for the pretty lass who fought for him from the beginning. Ran and Tatsuki were still dating, but the pretty supergal had refused his marriage proposals countless of times they were all starting to wonder if their relationship was going anywhere. She reasoned out that she loved the monkey boy, but marriage wasn't in her mind yet. Heck, she had Shibuya to protect from crime and that was more than enough to keep her hands full.

The group caught up with Yuuya on his way out the airport, and without asking Ran dragged him by the arm and forced him to go out with them for dinner and stop sulking because, really, didn't Mami promised to return the first chance she got? Everyone sweatdropped at the scene that played before them – Kotobuki half-dragging, half-beating Yuuya up as the blonde model desperately tried to pull himself away. Finally taking pity on the poor guy, Yamato broke his sister's tight grip and scolded her for being so damn insensitive.

Yuuya ended up going to dinner with them anyway.

They chose a different restaurant, because Machida Black's Haven was too far and Ran was already complaining about not having eaten since five o'clock in the afternoon. When Miyu reasoned out that it was only seven in the evening, the junior policewoman glared at her best friend and muttered something about them not caring about her stomach and all. So they hurried to the nearest establishment and faster than anyone could say Shibuya, Ran was already pestering the waiter with a tremendous number of orders that surely Tatsuki will have to pay for later.

Aya noticed that Yuuya hasn't spoken a word since they arrived, and after giving Rei's hand an affectionate squeeze, she scooted closer to his best friend to try and start a conversation.

"You know you can talk to us and we'd listen," she said as gently as she could, not wanting to push it if he didn't want to be pushed.

He merely nodded, and she turned her head when she felt her boy friend's eyes on her. Rei was looking at her intensely, and she suppressed a blush from appearing on her cheeks as she returned to her seat next to him.

"I only wanted to make sure he'd be okay," she tried to explain, as he suddenly took her hand and enclosed it in his. "He will be okay," he answered, and she smiled lightly before giving his hand another squeeze.

That night, as Aya Hoshino lay peacefully in bed, her cellphone started vibrating on top of her desk.

Yuuya Asou, the screen screamed.

"Hello?" she answered uncertainly, wondering whatever possessed him to call at such an ungodly hour. "Yuuya?" No one called him Second Place anymore, except Ran.

"Aya."

"Are you all right?" Of course he isn't, she winced at her own stupidity.

"I just… want someone to listen."

She smiled. "I'll listen."

And he stopped talking, and seconds later she heard soft sobs from the other end, and for the next hour neither one spoke, the silence disturbed once in a while by a sob, a sigh, and finally, a 'thank you' and 'good night.'

TBC


As if
Life is Never Simple isn't enough, I had to write another one of these things. So bite me. I love the triangle! And this actually came to me in a dream, well, more like the succeeding chapters did, and I swear it was really them! So kindly press that lovely purple button at the lower left corner of the page and leave this kyd a review. It will surely make her day brighter. Thanks!