Characters/Pairings: Deimon team (slight Shin/Sena, blink-and-you-miss-it Hiruma/Mamori)
Summary: The Deimon Devil Bats aren't so much a team as they are a family.
Disclaimer: Eyeshield 21 belongs to Riichiro Inagaki, Yusuke Murata, and Shueisha. No one is profiting from anything written in this story.
Doburoku didn't expect much out of the hodgepodge group at first. He figured that Hiruma and Kurita could finish the Death March, and maybe a couple of the brats, but he knew better than to hope for the whole team. The scars on Doburoku's leg were still too raw; he understood how cruel nakama could be.
It had been half a year since then, and for once Doburoku was happy to have guessed wrong. Even the invincible Kansai empire had fallen before his little bunch of misfits. But then again, perhaps that was why teams like Shinryuuji and Teikoku failed – they had placed all their faith in having the strongest members, in recruiting the best and dropping the trash. Deimon, who made use of even a subpar athlete like Yukimitsu, was different; their faith was made of something else. They were no longer teammates, but a family.
Doburoku held that thought for moment, chuckling a little. He could picture the Devil Bats household clearly.
Hiruma was the father – an old-fashioned patriarch who ruled the home with an iron fist. He was a strict disciplinarian with high expectations, but he had his own way of showing them affection. Mamori was naturally the doting mother, the one who cleaned up after them and patched their wounds and scolded her husband when he went too far.
Kurita and Musashi... Doburoku tried to place them. Well, they could only be uncles, Hiruma's blood brothers.
The rest of them were Hiruma's children, a nice big brood, with Juumonji and Monta and Komusubi and all. Yukimitsu was the mature eldest son, Sena the precious baby, Suzuna the only girl. And no family was complete without an embarrassment like Taki.
Yes, it all fit together nicely. That lavish clubhouse was their home. Ishimaru and the other helpers – the distant cousins that came for a visit every once in a while. Heck, they even had a pet, though Doburoku was sure that most of them would have preferred a goldfish or kitten to Cerberus.
And he himself, Doburoku realized suddenly... that made him Grandpa, didn't it?
He smiled and took a large swill from his jug. He could certainly do worse.
"WHAT DO YOU MEAN BOYFRIEND, YOU FUCKING SHRIMP!" Hiruma exploded.
Mamori scurried over, eyes wide as her protect Sena instinct was put on alarm. "Is that true, Sena?"
He nodded shyly. "Shin-san and I..." Sena was cut off as his captain let loose his artillery. Kurita tried to pry the gun out of his hands, while Musashi just looked up and ruffled Sena's hair before returning to his newspaper.
Yukimitsu tried to think of something to comfort his redfaced kohai, but by then everyone else had decided to join the commotion.
"Why didn't you tell me, Sena?" Monta demanded. "I'm your best friend, so I should have known about you and Shin-senpai first."
At Sena's stuttered apology, he just shook his head and grinned. "Just keep me in the loop, okay? You can tell me anything, you know." A look of horrified realization went across the receiver's face. "Wait, not anything! Forget that! You know what I mean!"
"Oh, what's this we hear about you and Shin?" Kuroki teased.
"You're someone's little girlfriend now? How like you, Sena," Toganou said, before being pulled aside by Juumonji.
"Hey, we need to draw straws. Whoever gets the shortest has to go talk with Shin man-to-man."
"Haaa? That's Hiruma's strong suit."
"Listen, we're the line! It's our job to protect Sena," he said gruffly, quietly praying to every deity he knew that he wouldn't end up with the short straw.
"Pro-protect!" Komusubi added.
"Aha ha!" Taki cut in, obviously feeling left out of the entire situation. "I'll threaten Sena-kun's boyfriend three times... before breakfast!"
"Don't listen to them, Sena! Not when you bagged a buff guy like that!" Suzuna squealed, smacking her brother hard. "Kyaa! Oh my God, that's so cute! Can I help you get dressed for your next date? Can I?"
Everyone was speaking to him so loudly and all at once... Sena began to feel a little dizzy. An arm wrapped around his shoulder.
"I can't believe you've grown up so fast, Sena. But, you know you can still come to your Mamori-neechan, right? And if Shin-kun ever does anything..." Mamori's voice was gentle, but her grip on the mop tightened and an evil aura began to surround her at the thought of her darling Sena being hurt.
"Goddammit, chibi, I have blackmail on fifteen thousand two hundred and six people in Tokyo. Why couldn't you screw around with one of them?" Hiruma grumbled.
Doburoku changed his mind. Maybe Shogun would be willing to swap teams with him.