Spring

Atobe Keigo, master of all he surveyed, gazed over the sprawling landscape of Hyotei Gakuen. It was springtime, and many of the students were enjoying lunch on the well-kept lawn, talking and laughing together. Others were leaping about excitedly, tossing balls and Frisbees back and forth. Yes, it was a good day for him and his loyal subjects.

He stretched languorously before getting off of the bench he had been sitting on and gesturing to his friend and faithful servant, Kabaji Munehiro. "It's a good day for tennis, ne, Kabaji?"

"Usu," Kabaji replied in his usual manner before stooping to pick up both his and Atobe's tennis bags. The two began walking together towards the courts on the other end of the school.

As they passed by the science building, a group of girls, dressed in the usual school uniforms, rushed by, giggling and casting occasional glances back at Atobe. He was suddenly and uncomfortably reminded that spring was considered by many to be the season of love. Valentine's Day had already passed, but it still seemed like girls were coming up to him every day, confessing their love for him.

Not that he minded that, though.

As he glanced around once more, he noticed the sheer amount of romance in the air. What he had thought were groups enjoying picnics together became pairs eating and cuddling together… and sometimes more than that. From where he was, he could see at least 20 couples, including Ootori and Shishido from the tennis team, who hadn't yet officially announced that they were going out but everyone knew anyway so there was no real point in putting it off unless they were shy or something. Actually… they did seem to be sitting rather far apart, and weren't even staring longingly into each other's eyes. Quite a change from the usual snogging in the back of the clubroom.

What was usual, however, was the small group that approached him next. A dozen girls, whispering and shoving a particular person forward from time to time. Eventually, this one girl, blushing fiercely, pushed her friends back. "Um, Atobe-sama, do you suppose I… could talk to you for a second?"

It took a second before he could place her face, but he quickly remembered. "Ah, yes, of course, Miss Reiko. Kabaji?"

Kabaji left silently, and Atobe led Reiko around to the back of the school, where she would be safe from the piercing glares of Atobe's other fangirls, who tended to get a little overzealous when it came to other women in his life. (He usually encouraged that sort of thing, but even he drew the line when some of them had accosted his grandmother, on the grounds that "No-one that old and wrinkled should be allowed within 100 meters of Atobe-sama!")

"Um, Atobe-sama, there's something I think I should tell you. You see… I… I…!" She looked up at him desperately, as if he would finish her sentence for her. How many previous confessions had started out this way? All 412 this year. Atobe smiled encouragingly, just as he had the previous 411 times. The sooner she got it out, the sooner he could let her down gently and explain he wasn't looking for love at the moment. Then she'd probably start crying.

The only positive aspect of the situation, Atobe reflected, besides the fact that Reiko was quite cute, was that at least she was a girl. It was a natural consequence of being, in effect, the god of the school, but it was just so awkward being asked out by another guy, and even worse when they started crying.

Atobe eventually realized that Reiko had begun talking again. "-and so, I'm sorry to have to be the one to inform you, but those are the facts of the situation at hand."

"I hate to say this, but this isn't the time for me to be focusing on things like that. You see, we've decided to aim for the Nationals this year, and my student council duties might conflict. It's not that I don't like you, it's just that I don't want to hurt y-" Atobe paused. Reiko was regarding him not with the usual watery half-smile, but a full-out grin. "Aahn?"

"Atobe-sama, you weren't really listening to me, were you?"

"Of course I was listening to you. Would Ore-sama be that rude to such a beautiful girl? I think not."

"Then you would know… that I wasn't saying anything about a romantic interest in you."

Atobe thought this over. Was it a trick? Very subtly, he raised a hand over his face in his trademark "Insight" pose. To his newly focused eyes, she didn't appear to be lying. To be safe, he decided to remain silent and wait for her to continue.

"Yeah, like I was saying. Your clothes…"

"Ah… Yes, of course. I understand." Feeling he was once again on safe ground, Atobe spun around. "It's all the rage in Paris, or so I understand. I realize that technically I should be wearing my uniform, but it's just so… well, conformist. I can't really give you any other advice than that." It figured. If the girl wasn't attempting to ask him out, she just wanted to compliment his style… and try to get all the advice she could. While Reiko certainly could do with a bit of a makeover, Atobe wasn't willing to offer his services. After all, there was a tennis game waiting for him. Perhaps he could wake Jirou up to play with him, or drag Oshitari away from his horde of female admirers (which the other boy encouraged even more than Atobe did), or just play against Kabaji as usual.

Lost in thought, Atobe drifted away, heedless to the girl's pleas for him to come back. Eventually, she gave up and gestured to her friends, who had briefly left her while she was talking to the flamboyant captain.

"So… did you do it? Did you tell him?" Miko asked her.

"I… I tried… but I don't think he was listening to me…" Reiko burst into tears.

Not tears of sadness. The kind of tears that come from laughing too hard.

"Ohmigawd, can you believe it?"

"I know, right? The great 'Ore-sama,' Atobe Keigo himself!"

"Maybe he can't read."

"Sitting on the bench we just painted last period! What a dork!"

Atobe, out of earshot, merely continued to stroll away, giving a smile at the foolishness of women as he heard the girls giggling behind him, completely unaware of the huge paint stains across the back of his costly new outfit.


Xiana: Er, yes... Sorry for the random!fic. It was kind of an assignment for Creative Writing class (Yes, the assignment was to write fanfiction of all things) so I figured I'd put it up here and see if anyone wanted to read it. The limit was 1000 words but it still ended up being 1200... Um, please review! Poor Atobe...