And I want to say thank you to all the people that reviewed including Paffu, Puff, SkySurf, luckystar03, Iza, faith lane, and heidi-mayer87.
Chapter #2: And They Start Singing
Momo shifted restlessly in front of the door to Ryoma's house. It was later, after school and practice (Momo had had a detention for something that wasn't his fault no matter what Kanzaki-sensei had said and hadn't been able to walk Ryoma home like he normally would have), and he'd already rung the doorbell twice and now all he was waiting for was for Ryoma to show up already. "C'mon. C'mon," he muttered to himself and rang the doorbell again.
That finally got somebody to answer the door, but it wasn't Ryoma like Momo had hoped.
"You!" Nanjiroh laughed at finding Momo on his doorstep. "Waiting for my useless, no talent excuse for a son, are you?"
Momo tried not to bristle at the insults to Ryoma, but it was hard. It always was when Nanjiroh insulted his now-boyfriend. "Yeah," Momo finally said once the burst of anger had cooled enough. "Is he here? We're supposed to go do something today."
Nanjiroh just looked amused. "What if I say he can't go anywhere? He hasn't brought me any pretty girls this week."
"He never brings you any pretty girls," Momo muttered under his breath, but then turned back to Nanjiroh with a strained smile. "Look. I'm sorry. Is he here or not?"
"Oyaji," came Ryoma's irritated voice from behind Nanjiroh. "Get out of the way."
"I'm only looking out for you," Nanjiroh said playfully, turning to his son. "You shouldn't be hanging out with useless boys like him." Momo was ignored as he bristled at the insult and Nanjiroh continued, "You should be hanging out with pretty girls like I was when I was your age."
Ryoma said nothing to this, but rolled his eyes and pushed his father bodily out of the way. "Let's go," he said to Momo and the two of them left, pushing open the front gate and leaving Nanjiroh behind.
"I don't know how you can deal with him," Momo muttered when they'd gotten far enough away. "He's so . . . ugh."
Ryoma shrugged, not looking bothered. "He's an idiot. You learn to ignore him."
"Still," Momo said, still looking irritated. "He shouldn't talk to you like that."
Here, Ryoma looked up at Momo with a smirk. "Was he insulting me again?"
Momo only nodded once, tersely.
Ryoma shrugged, not bothered in the least by this discovery. "Like I said. He's an idiot."
Momo sighed. He would never understand Ryoma and his father's relationship and he wasn't sure he wanted to. It had never seemed all that healthy to him. His parents would never insult him to his face, for example. And they told him they were proud of him regularly. Momo knew the only reason Ryoma had grown up with any ego to speak of was because he was so good at tennis. What if he'd been average? Or worse, sucked completely? Then what would Ryoma have done?
Momo didn't like to think about it and he wouldn't think about it now. This was a date and he wasn't going to spend it on morose thoughts.
"So," he said brightly, looking back down at Ryoma. "Where do you want to go today?"
Ryoma glanced up at him slyly. "I don't know. Tennis courts?"
At this, Momo sighed and rolled his eyes. "I mean besides there. We can go there later." They did have their tennis bags, but that was more put of habit than anything, plus the fact that they always seemed to end up at the tennis courts no matter what they did.
"What if I don't want to go anywhere else?" Ryoma said, deceptively mild because Momo knew Ryoma was laughing at him in there. "You asked me where I wanted to go. I want to go to the tennis courts."
"You," Momo said, pointing at the shorter boy, "are unhealthily obsessed. You need more hobbies and I am going to give them to you or die trying."
That was somewhat annoying. "You never used to be this concerned about my hobbies," Ryoma grumbled somewhat irritably.
"Yeah, well, things have changed," Momo said, giving Ryoma a serious look. "And you know it."
Ryoma was quiet for a moment at this reference to their new relationship, but then he glanced up to catch Momo's eyes with a smirk. "There is a movie."
Momo smiled. "Thank you."
Tezuka scowled and shut the door behind him with maybe a little bit more force than was strictly necessary. Fuji and he had barely avoided having an all out shouting fest in the middle of the clubhouse after practice and Tezuka didn't know if he could do this anymore. Was this how things were going to be from now on? Him and Fuji walking around each other on eggshells, not wanting to get the other boy started because they didn't want to be the one to finally lose their cool? To not be able to be in the same room as Fuji without wanting to strangle that smug look from his face that apparently only Tezuka himself could see?
What did Fuji think he was doing, playing with Tezuka's family dynamics the way he had? Tezuka didn't go over to Fuji's house and shove Yuuta in the dirt and then leave him with the therapy bills, did he? Which, okay, was a little different than what Fuji had actually done, but the idea was similar. Fuji had shoved Tezuka's role as dutiful son in the dirt and now Tezuka was being the one to pay for it. His parents still couldn't look at him without disgust in their eyes, which, while nothing new ever since Fuji had become his boyfriend, had at least once been abating. Now that Fuji had come and threatened everyone, the disgust was back and magnified tenfold.
Tezuka couldn't do this anymore. He was tired of the cold shoulder and obviously his relationship with Fuji wasn't as worth it as he'd once thought. Not if the boy was going to come charging into his house and disobey direct wishes.
It was time to end things once and for all.
He ignored the beginning of what sounded like music playing in his ear. It wasn't anything his parents or grandparents would listen to, but it wasn't important right now. He even ignored it as Fuji's sister answered the phone and Tezuka told her to put Fuji on the line.
"Hello?" Fuji's voice finally came on the line and Tezuka opened his mouth to begin the angry opening of what would be his final conversation with the other boy, but something else came out instead.
"Can you see me - floating above your head as you lay in bed thinking about everything that you did not do?" Tezuka sang angrily, surprising himself but not enough that he could stop singing. "'Cause saying 'I love you' has nothing to do with meaning iiii-iit," he continued musically. "Oh –oh – oh – oh. Oh – oh –oh oohh-oh-oh."
"Tezuka?" Fuji asked, sounding bewildered.
" And I don't trust you," Tezuka continued angrily still, " 'cause every time you're here your intentions are unclear. I spend every hour waiting for a phone call - that I know will never come. I used to think you were the one. Now I'm sick of thinking anything at all."
Tezuka stood so that he could pace the room angrily and kept on singing. He had to wonder why he was singing in the first place and was only getting angrier as he realized both the why and the how.
"You ain't never coming back to me," Tezuka sang into the phone, cursing Inui and his juice. "That's not how this was supposed to be. You take my hand just to give it back. No other lover has ever done that."
Tezuka closed his eyes as what he was actually singing hit him for the first time and he heard the words.
"Do you remember the way we used to melt?" he asked, remembering it himself. "Do you remember how it felt when I touched you? Oh 'cause I remember very we-e-ell. Wo-o-oah."
Tezuka took a deep breath and let it out as Fuji continued to say his name in his ear, still sounding confused.
"Tezuka? Tezuka, what's going on? Why are you singing? Did Inui do something?"
He actually sounded worried.
"How long has it been since someone you let in has given what I gave to you?" Tezuka sang more, still angrily. All he could feel was anger. "And at night when you sleep do you dream I would be there just for a minute or two?"
Tezuka took another deep breath as he came upon what seemed like the chorus. "You ain't never coming back to me," he sang, realizing it himself even as he said the words. "That's not how this was supposed to be. You take my hand just to give it back. No other lover has ever done that."
Tezuka clenched his free hand into a fist and brought it to his chest, right where his heart would be. The action happened without him even thinking about it and he only felt more anger as he realized the true extent of his lack of control. "Heartache, heartache, I just have so much," he sang. "A simple love with a complex touch. And there is nothing you can say or do. I called to let you know I'm through with you." (1) And with that he hung up the phone and the song came to an abrupt end. Almost seething at what had been deliberately done to him and from his lasting anger at Fuji, Tezuka sat down on his bed and put his head in his hands, taking deep breaths.
Inui would wish he was dead come tomorrow.
Fuji stared at the phone in his hand, listening to the faint sound of the dial tone, and then slowly hung up. He didn't know why Tezuka had been singing—though he had a strong idea as to who was to blame—but the message behind the song had been more than clear. Tezuka had just broken up with him. Fuji almost couldn't believe it. He'd known Tezuka had been angry, but angry enough to actually break up with him?
He didn't know what he felt about that, but he had a strong feeling that this was what it was like to have your heart broken. Strange. He'd never felt that before.
He'd only done what he'd thought was right! Tezuka's family shouldn't have been treating him like that.
Taking in a deep breath, Fuji kept his eyes open and slowly left the living room where his sister was sitting on the couch looking at him in concern and walked to his bedroom. Closing the door softly behind him, he quietly made his way to his bed and sat down. Taking in another deep breath, Fuji turned to look at the collection of photos he had lying around his room in frames. He'd always loved photography and Tezuka had been his favorite subject so he had more than enough pictures of the other boy to upset him.
Taking yet another deep breath as he felt the hurt only that much more strongly, Fuji felt his mouth open and he began to sing without even realizing it.
"Lay a whisper . . . on my pillow," he sang softly and slowly, "Leave the winter on the ground. I wake up lonely. There's an air of silence . . . in the bedroom and all around." Fuji swallowed roughly and looked around his room at his collection of cacti and photographs again. "Touch me now, I close my eyes," Fuji closed his eyes finally, "and dream away."
Almost distantly, Fuji realized that he could hear music and that he was singing, but he was lost in the strength of emotion that he was feeling. "It must have been love, but it's over now," he sang, opening his eyes again, "It must have been good, but I lost it somehow. It must have been love, but its over now. From the moment we touched to the time it ran out."
Frowning softly and feeling really rather distant, Fuji reached out for the closest photo of Tezuka and him together that Eiji had taken one day and looked at it. "Make believing we're together, that I'm sheltered by your heart. But in and outside, I turn to water, like a teardrop in your palm."
Fuji put the photo back where it had stood, only kept it facing downward. "And it's a hard winter's day," he sang, "I dream away. It must have been love, but its over now. It was all that I wanted, now I'm living without. It must have been love, but it's over noooow. It's where the water floooows. It's where the wind blooooows."
Fuji stood again and walked over to the window where the window ledge held three of his prized cacti. Lightly brushing one with his hand, he sang louder, "It must have been love, but it's over now. It must have been good, but I lost it somehow. It must have been love, but its over now. From the moment we touched to the time it ran out." He swallowed again and looked down at the floor. "Yeah, it must have been love, but it's over now," he sang loudly, "It was all that I wanted, now I'm living without. It must have been love but it's over nooooow." His voice went low and he sang softly, "It's where the water flooooows. It's where the wind bloooows." (2)
The music he cold barely hear slowly petered out and Fuji was left standing at his window, feeling horrible but also very positive that he would have to somehow destroy Inui. Completely destroy him. Good thing that would probably make him feel a lot better as well.
"Syuusuke?" came his sister's voice from outside the door before she knocked. "Is everything okay? Were you singing? You have a lovely voice."
Kaidoh leaned back against Inui's back as his boyfriend continued with his notes on Kaidoh's tennis progress. It had been two weeks since they had reached that understanding that Inui would spend more time being a boyfriend and less time being a tennis manager and the two of them had still not gone on a proper date, but Kaidoh could be patient.
"Fuji-senpai is going to kill you," he started, realizing distantly that Tezuka and Fuji must have already sang at least once since they had left them after practice. It was around the right time.
Inui hmm'd somewhat distantly, busy with his notes and calculations. "Nothing I can't handle," he said absentmindedly.
Kaidoh hmm'd in reply and just relaxed in the momentary peace. He had a feeling Inui just didn't have the right kind of imagination to realize how much trouble he was in, but he wasn't going to say anything. He hadn't really thought this plan to make Tezuka and Fuji sing had been a good one to start with, but he did remember how much it had helped with his own relationship and so hadn't said anything.
The two of them sat in comfortable silence, something which two weeks ago would have been impossible. Kaidoh would have always felt he should be doing something, trying harder, but now he just wanted to see how things would go when he didn't even try. He shouldn't have to really try. At least not as hard as he had been trying.
Finally Inui looked up from his notebook and twisted around to face him. "Are you ready to go home?"
Kaidoh nodded and climbed to his feet. Looking back at Inui, he asked, "Would you like to come over to my house for dinner tonight? My mom was asking about you."
Inui looked at him with a frown. "I actually was going to use tonight to prepare some juice for tomorrow. It may take a while."
Kaidoh frowned in return. That was the second time Inui had pleaded off going to dinner because of his juice or his spying ventures. Kaidoh wondered if he should bring up their agreement, but then thought that maybe it was too soon. And maybe Inui really did need to work on his juice. Eventually he nodded, but he was uncomfortable with this and decided then and there that Inui would be doing something outside of tennis with him tomorrow whether he liked it or not.
(1) "Through With You" by Maroon 5
(2) "It Must Have Been Love" by Roxette\