Title: The Reason

Disclaimer: I don't own any of the characters.

Feedback: Very much appreciated.

Pairing: Akari/Ichino

Rating: PG

Summary: What if Ichino and Akari had sealed their second promise with a kiss?

A/N: Battle Athletes Victory Universe. I'm a Ichino/Akari supporter but I don't mind Akari with others as well.

"Itchan .."

What reason will you have to run now?

Akari cried silently as she ran the triathlon, not quite understanding why she was doing it in the first place. Ever since Ichino left the school due to her injury, Akari pretty much was just a walking zombie with absolutely no motivation to do anything. Days passed and Akari would only curl up in her room, isolating herself from everyone. She thought of what she could've done if she had caught up with her Itchan at the shuttle station.

What reason will you have to run now?

Jessie's words rang clearly in Akari's head and she grew confused and hopeless. No Itchan, no motivation. The words of her classmates didn't phase her, everyone looking down up her...nothing affected her anymore because she didn't have her dearest best friend, Itchan. Throughout the entire triathlon she only thought of Ichino until she ran into Ling Pha's trap and she was ready to quit. If it weren't for Itchan's brother giving her the confidence that Osaka was supporting her and indefinitely Itchan herself, Akari wouldn't have the will to continue forward.

What reason will you have to run now?

A new burst of energy coursed through Akari's veins and she pumped her legs, pedaling to reach her goal of being in the top three and to make Ichino proud. Every single emotion she felt was poured into her physical body and she had made the jump between last place to second place. Nothing could stop Akari, until her armband with Itchan's number fell off in the last leg of the race. Akari couldn't breathe, couldn't go on, all she could think was of Itchan.

What reason will you have to run now?

Tears sprung up to her eyes and she didn't know. Everyone was supporting her but without Ichino Yanagida it was all for nothing. Then she heard her voice. Her reprimanding voice demanding an answer to why she had stopped. Akari turned around to see her Itchan and ran with all her might, to her goal, not the finish line, but the most important person in the world to her...

"ITCHAAAN!!" and she ran until she was wrapped up in her embrace. The rain stopped, and the clouds cleared up, leaving the bright shining sun in its presence. Akari had finished first and no doubt, made Ichino very proud. They stood in front of the tree, the words "Akari, Ichino" written into it.

"Ne, Akari. Let's make another promise. Next year, I will enter University Satellite for sure with you waiting for me...as the Cosmo Beauty!" Ichino grinned proudly.

Akari's eyes grew large, "EHHH?" Ichino just smiled, her heart fluttering like it always did whenever she was with Akari. Silence surrounded them and Ichino stepped closer to her, shifting her weight to her uninjured leg. Her hand came up to the side of her face and whispered, "I know you can do it..."

What reason will you have to run now?

It had always been Itchan. Akari's face grew heated as Itchan searched her eyes, "Akari...wait for me." Ichino's gaze became soft as she leaned in closer, "I love you...wait for me." Akari's breathing became slightly heavy as the distance between the two lessened. "Promise me." Itchan held very still, her lips lightly grazing against her best friend's as she spoke. "Akari very quietly spoke, "Yes, I promise to wait for you." Just like that, both of their eyes closed as lips met lips in a sweet tender kiss.

CLICK! Whirrr. The sound of a camera caused both of them to jump back in surprise. A grinning boy was holding a huge camera that resembled Ling Pha's trademark "Memento" camera. "AHHHH!" Itchan yelled and began chasing after her brother despite her injured leg while Akari stood silent with her fingers pressed against her lips. A heavy blush covered her face but no one could've missed the small smile.

Months Later

Akari was at University Satellite, keeping her end of the promise and doing her best to become Cosmo Beauty. She had made it into the contest and was currently at a party with her roommates. Anna was a great girl who was an incredible cook as well as being incredibly sweet. Then there came Kris, the girl she had bumped into and claimed that they were destined to be together. Akari was often found in compromising positions with her but always demanded to be let go.

Everyone at the University assumed that they were together despite Akari's protest. Yet, she never brought up Ichino because she didn't find the need to...she was here to keep her promise to her love and she was going to keep it. Akari was enjoying the party so far until a serious faced Kris popped up in front of her.

"Akari...who is this?" the tall, cerulean haired girl held a stern face as she showed her the picture of Ichino with her arm around Akari in a "V!" pose. Akari questioned Kris where she got it but soon her face grew calm as she smiled and took the picture. "What is she to you?" Kris demanded. "That's Itchan. Someone very dear to me."

Kris cried in anguish, "EHHH?!" Anna tried keeping her calm, "Ms. Christopher!" Kris held onto Akari with tears in her eyes, "Very dear to you? To what extent?" It was quite comical the way Kris held onto Akari, her hands shaking the poor girl, wanting some answers. Throughout the whole shaking, Akari's student ID in its plastic case fell off. It landed face down to see a picture squeezed in the back of the plastic case.

Anna squinted and picked it up, drawing the attention of Kris who had stopped crying for a minute to stare. A tree with the words "Akari, Ichino". Akari leaning up with her hands on Ichino's shoulders and her eyes closed blissfully. Ichino with one arm wrapped around her waist and the other hand holding her cheek, a warm blush on her face. Akari hastily grabbed her student ID from Anna.

Kris went back to her hysterical crying, this time on top of Gyubei. The shouts of "Attack of the Cow!!" was heard all night. Akari stared at the picture for a little bit with a blissful smile before looking up at the sight before her. She sighed and shook her head before commenting Anna, "Itchan is very dear to me. She is the reason why I run."

A/N: One Shot. I haven't written in awhile and I am quite aware of the fact that the scenes didn't quite like the TV show. I couldn't remember them quite well but I've been meaning to write a story. I'll have some more one-shots up. Hopefully soon. Please review. Constructive criticism is accepted. Just keep in mind I'm not exactly the best writer out there.