I don't own Prince of Tennis. Another decent sized project but with some het pairings of PoT—I will be doing 8 of these.
Twelve year old Ryoma slept soundly on the roof of his school. It was lunchtime, so the Prince had free time to catch up on his sleep. Class was always boring because he already knew most of things taught. While his father stressed tennis skill, his mother stressed book smarts. Ryoma slept peacefully, minding his own business. No one ever found him up here and sometimes he missed the afternoon classes because of that.
Ryoma briefly heard a footsteps come toward him, and decided to ignore that person. After a few minutes, he heard footsteps walk away from him and open the door to get in the building. When he knew for sure that the person was gone, he sat him. Next to him was a neatly made bento.
The Prince looked at it for a moment and shrugged. He picked it up and ate it. It was good and he wondered who made it.
Echizen Ryoma had been back in Japan for a couple months and was well into his third year at Seigaku Chuu. He was a regular on the tennis team, usually a Single 1 position even though he was not buchou. Not much happened in the year he was gone except that his senpai are dating, because frankly Ryoma pities those foolish girls—his senpai are insane. He still had his annoying fangirls, especially that loud one Osakada. Ryuuzaki-sensei's granddaughter, who was a fixture in his life at twelve, was too busy with the culinary club and their cook-off or whatever to come and cheer for him at matches.
It annoyed him that she was not there, but he could not do anything. But she made him food, so it was not all bad.
"Oi, Echizen," said the buchou (not Ryoma's buchou because that is Tezuka and always will be), "Ryuuzaki-sensei wants you to walk her granddaughter home; she has a meeting to attend to."
"Yeah," said Ryoma, in agreement. He headed inside to the culinary club to retrieve Sakuno. Ryuuzaki-sensei only ever trusted him to take Sakuno home on her busy days and when Tomoka could not. He heard from Horio that Momo or Kaidoh walked Sakuno home last year on those days. "Oi, Ryuuzaki, let's go." The leader of her club sighed. He always came in and was rude.
"Oh, Obaa-san is busy if Ryoma-kun is here," said Sakuno, bowing politely to her fellow chefs. She grabbed her things. Ryoma headed out and Sakuno hurried to catch up. "How was tennis practice, Ryoma-kun?"
"Fine," replied the Prince, curtly. As usual, he never really talked, expect for one word answers, so he just listened to her talk.
"Today, we worked on a new recipe," said Sakuno, cheerfully. "It's some French dessert."
"Ah," said Ryoma, indicating that he was still listening. She continued to talk until they reached her home.
"Thank you again, Ryoma-kun," said Sakuno, smiling brightly. "I'm sorry I'm such a bother."
"You're not a bother," said Ryoma, "I'll see you tomorrow." He does not notice her blush and leaves. The next day, he received the best tasting bento from the girl. He ate it without complaint and wondered why she worked so hard for his lunch. He guessed it was practice or whatever.
He, somehow (the student council forced him), got thrown into being a beauty contest judge for high school girls. Even though he was sixteen, he still prefers to play his beloved sport—tennis. Of course, when the news spread that he was going to be one of the judges about half of his fangirls joined. He did not like any of them and really wished they did not try so hard to get his attention. They had his attention but in a bad way.
This was probably his father's dream job to see girls in swimsuits and all dressed up in formal kimonos. None of them were pretty or beautiful, some were decent looking but Ryoma really did not have an opinion. The other two judges were a woman that works for a fashion magazine and the basketball team's buchou and Ryoma really pissed them off.
He gave zeroes to every girl and just looked bored. Not to mention, he think he made a few girls cry. When it was over he got out of the auditorium as fast as he could because the winner of the contest got a date with him. He never agreed to that, so he bolted. He had to find that Osakada girl to scare that winner off.
But in his effort to lose the people chasing him to get back to the contest area, he ran straight into his girl best friend. Sakuno was coming out of the bathroom to head back to the culinary club of the high school.
"Ow," said Sakuno, looking up, seeing Ryoma. "Oh I'm sorry."
"ECHIZEN GET BACK HERE," screeched a few dozen people. Ryoma cursed and got a look from Ryuuzaki (she did not like it when he cursed). He helped her up and began running again. Only this time he dragged her with him.
"Uh, Ryoma-kun, what's going on," asked Sakuno. He did not answer. They got to the roof and Ryoma knew he lost those annoying people. "Does this have something to do with that beauty contest you were a judge in?"
"Winner got a date with me, I had no clue, annoying fools," said Ryoma, more to himself than to her.
"I see," said Sakuno, looking at the ground. Ryoma sighed and wondered what he said.
"What," Ryoma asked, kind of irritable.
"Shouldn't you be happy to go on a date with a girl that is beautiful enough to match your looks," asked Sakuno, in retort. She was a bit jealous, but Ryoma just thought she was annoyed at him being thoughtless again.
"She wasn't beautiful," said Ryoma. "None of them were."
"Oh," she said, feeling kind of stupid. "Oh no, I need to back to club. I'll see you later Ryoma-kun." She left and Ryoma just stared after her. She was indeed a beautiful young lady.
"Get the hell away from Ryuuzaki," snarled eighteen year old Ryoma to Ryuuzaki Sakuno's fanboys (actually they're her suitors but to Ryoma they were fanboys). He glared at the boys to get away from the still kind and sometimes shy Ryuuzaki. "Tell them off when they get too close."
"Thank you, Ryoma-kun," she said, cheerfully. She completely ignored his advice to deal with the suitors (fanboys). "Will you walk me home?"
"Hn," said Ryoma, as if saying she did not have to ask. They began walking towards the home that Sakuno lived in with Tomoka. Her parents were business people (which are why she was staying with Ryuuzaki-sensei for the majority of her life) and they want Sakuno to get married. Ryoma was extremely annoyed with the prospect of Sakuno getting married to some moronic boy that her parents picked. He does not know if it is because of the American culture to pick who you marry and love rubbed off on him or if it's because it bothers him to know end because then she could not make him food and be near him.
He asked Fuji-senpai for advice, not his first choice but he was the only one in the country at the time, and the tensai told him that he was jealous and liked Sakuno. Ryoma does not deny (in his mind and not out loud) that he likes Sakuno, because she is nice and cooks well and is a good friend. Fuji laughed, as if knowing what the Prince was thinking, and told him very bluntly that he was in love with the girl.
He, the Echizen Ryoma, the Prince of Tennis, was in love with Ryuuzaki Sakuno. In fact, Fuji told him that he has been crushing on Sakuno for the past six years without even noticing.
Ryoma hated it when Fuji-senpai was right.
"Hey, Ryuuzaki," said Ryoma, Filla cap covering his eyes, "Let's go on a date sometime." Sakuno blushed beat red and he was sure she was going to pass out or something.
"Sure," said Sakuno, who began to grin. Ryoma smirked.
Ryoma was not good at voicing his emotions, especially to his one-year girlfriend. He loved her, very much and was never too sure what she thought of him. She was not that good at talking about her emotions either, well any that involved the l-word, that is. Their relationship was at best innocent. They never kissed, they hold hands (only sometimes), and everything between them was basically the same except for the fact that they had the titles of boyfriend and girlfriend.
He was not that good at being romantic (his father, brother, and senpai were no help because they lacked tact as well and it is not like he could go up to his mother or cousin or even Osakada for advice). Even though he was romantically challenged, he still wanted to make an effort to improve his relationship with Sakuno.
Honestly, Ryoma could not see himself with any other girl because she fit his personality and understood him without words. She took care of him and he protected her, he liked protecting her. He would like to tell her these things but Ryoma cannot because he has doubts about any feelings she may have for him.
She may not love him like he loves her.
"Ryoma-kun, you are spacing off again. Are you sure you feel alright," asked Sakuno, worried.
"Fine," said Ryoma. "What were you saying?"
"Kin-chan is coming to Tokyo for a rematch with you," said Sakuno. Ryoma stiffened, it was not like he was not friends with the other tennis Prince but she called him 'Kin-chan'. Tooyama anytime he visits always hugs and touches and flirts with Ryuuzaki.
"Oh," said Ryoma. She stared at him and he stared back. "I need to take you home." He wanted to tell her that he loved her but the words were never coming out. Then to his surprise, Sakuno sighed loudly. "What?"
It took her a minute to decide to talk or not. She said, "Damnit Ryoma, why can't you tell that I love you?"
"You love me," asked Ryoma, stupefied.
"Only since we were twelve, Ryoma-kun," said Sakuno, sighing. He blinked and realized he was a complete dense asshole.
"I, uh," started Ryoma as Sakuno looked at him, expectantly. "Screw it." He grabbed her and kissed her. "I'm in love with you." She was blushing and he knew for sure that he was too.
It only took him seven long years to realize that he loves Sakuno and she loves him.