A/N: Sorry for the long delay! Ideas come very sporadically to me. And reviews are very helpful in giving me inspiration/ideas, so thanks everyone and please keep it coming! This one's for Kotone Kin!

o3. Playing Nerd
Estimated Timeline: Before Episode 1

Zero was suspicious. Very Suspicious.

Because Yuuki was calm. Too calm as she sat in the chair with her textbook. Textbook.

He would never go so far as to call her the poster child for Asians Who Suck at Math, but he did make a note that while the textbook was wide open on her lap and her head bent down to face it, the numbers and words were upside down. And yet, somehow, during the span of their 30 minutes of study she still managed to get some calculations written down in her notebook -- before she went all calm and quiet, that is. Maybe she naturally did math upside down or something, he didn't know.

"Hey. You."

Her head sprung to life at his calling, and she met his gaze almost instantly. "Yeah?"

Nothing came out of his mouth for a while; he wasn't sure how to tell her to stop blanking out and return to her homework. Wasn't sure how to tell her to keep her mind on her school work and her grades that were hanging on to dear life at the Chairman's mercy. Most of all, he wasn't sure how to tell it to her nicely.

"Zero? What's the matter?"

"Stop daydreaming or else you'll fail, idiot." Inside, he grimaced slightly. That wasn't how it was supposed to come out. "And your book is upside down."

She raised her eyebrows slightly in surprise and glanced down at her lap. "Oh, this?" She laughed lightly and closed the text, standing up from her seat. "Zero, I finished 15 minutes ago. I was just waiting for you so we could do the dishes together." She placed a finger to her chin, tilting her head to the side to stare at him curiously. "You're... not done?"


She walked over to him, placing her palm against his forehead to feel his temperature before sliding it through his hair and ruffling it. She smiled as she headed out of the room. "Let me just go tidy up the kitchen first, and then I'll be back to help you study, okay?"

He stared after her until she left his sight. Then, annoyed, he leaned over the table to grab her notebook.

"ZERO! NO CHEATING!" She stormed back into the room, snatching it out of his hands and raising it to whack him against the shoulder. But she stopped midair when she noticed a page of his textbook. "Oh, Zero, you're on the wrong chapter. Baka..." She sighed, almost in amusement. "Stop daydreaming."

: )