Disclaimer: Original names, characters and places don't belong to me. I don't own anything except the general ridiculous plot-less plot and OC(s), if any. Yadablah.

As Fate Wills It


"The Nationals Finals Singles 1 match will now commence. Hyotei's Echizen Reiko versus Rikkaidai's Kirihara Akaya." The referee announced.

It was a year later. Hyotei and Rikkaidai were fighting over who would claim the title of National champions again. Hyotei, under the captaincy of Ohtori Choutarou, and the co-vice-captaincy of Echizen Reiko and Kevin Smith versus Rikkaidai which was captained by Kirihara Akaya, backed by no one.

"I don't want to play you, 'nee-chan!" Akaya complained as he shook her hand lightly at the net.

Reiko smirked at him. "Too bad, Aka-chan." She had adopted her boyfriend's name for him after a while. Couples did rub off one another, after all. "Smooth, of course."

"I don't even feel like trying." The seaweed head whined. "Oh, your serve. But 'Mura-buchou will kill me if I didn't because…"

"Losing isn't allowed. I know." Reiko's smirk only grew more obvious.

Akaya muttered. "You should. You happen to be dating him for a year and counting now."

Hearing him, Reiko only laughed, making her way to position to serve.

Yanagi had accepted Yukimura's invitation to go watch the Finals of the high school Nationals matches. He'd expected the blunette to go: his girlfriend was playing after all. He was just surprised to find the remaining member of Rikkaidai's Troika missing.

Yukimura just shrugged when questioned, but inwardly admitted that it was because he still didn't feel that comfortable around his old friend. With their entrance into university, he's leaned towards Art while Sanada had gone into some business course or other that would help him when he entered the family business. Yanagi had gone into some nutritional research alongside Inui.

The Golden Three of Rikkaidai had, for lack of a better word, drifted.

This year's Golden Three belonged to Hyotei. Ohtori, Smith and Echizen. They'd taken the circuit by storm. Everyone had assumed Ohtori was useless without Shishido by his side, but he'd proved them wrong. He actually played singles.

They thought him daft for putting Smith and Echizen in Doubles 1. The best friends wiped the court with their opponents' asses - They were best friends, after all.

Reiko had confided in Seiichi that it had been so amusing to be underestimated all over again. She'd grown tired of her reputation after a while. The cautious player was never as fun – they didn't have a high horse that Reiko could pull them off.

The cautious player now was Akaya.

Logically, Seiichi knew that Rikkaidai's Devil faced decent odds. He had trained him well, and his successor still met with the old team to train regularly. With regard to those meetings, Kirihara never mentioned how Sanada and Yukimura seldom attended a gathering where the other was present. Nor did he mention that Sanada would never be present if Yukimura met up with the old team with Reiko.

It would seem that though astute, the brash teen had finally learnt how to keep his mouth shut.

Yukimura glanced over to Hyotei's side of the court, earning himself a knowing look from Yanagi. "It's hard to decide who to support, isn't it? The brat that we trained to take over after we graduated or the girl that you're absolutely besotted with."

Yanagi never got an answer. Yukimura's eyes were too focused on the chain around his girlfriend's neck, from which he knew hung the pendant that he'd gifted her at the end of the last school year. Oh well, it had been rhetorical anyway.

It was a nice platinum chain. Definitely high quality, Ryoko decided as she surveyed her niece's choice of accessories of the night. It wasn't just the night after graduation. It was also the night of Reiko's coming out party.

The pendant wasn't made for an event like this, Ryoko determined.

"Reiko-chan, wouldn't you consider wearing the yellow diamonds, at least? They're small." She tried persuading her stubborn niece, whose hand reached up to grasp the pendant that dangled down.

It wasn't even made of an expensive metal. Just a plain enough thing, set in platinum in the back, with a protective layer of glaze painted over. While it was simplistic and the silver went decently with the deep teal-green dress that Reiko was wearing...

"Just let her do what she wants, okaa-sama." Atobe called as he entered the room. "Chibi wouldn't take off that necklace. You'd have to pry it from her cold, dead hands."

Atobe Ryoko glared at her son. "What a way to put things, Keigo! And on your cousin's coming out party, too!" She turned her glare to her snickering niece. "Reiko, let me see that."

She flipped the pendant over before her niece had a chance to protest. The engraving on the back was simple enough: an elegantly entwined R and S in roman script. A closer look at the front told her all she needed to know. She knew a school crest when she saw one, for all that she was most familiar with Hyotei's.

"Keep it on then." She smiled knowingly at the blushing Reiko, much to Atobe's endless amusement.

It was Echizen-Takeuchi Reiko's coming out party. She was certainly expected to dance with whichever eligible male that came her way. But when did she obey convention, anyway?

Reiko spent most of the night with Yukimura once she had done the requiste rounds of speaking to the most important people. The rest, she decided, could stuff it, while she enjoyed her 'early birthday party' with Seiichi.

If they wanted to speak of inferior blood, they could go stuff their opinions up their backsides.

Seiichi laughed when she told him that.

Instinctively, their hands intertwined and tightened around each other's.

Who would have thought an action so simple, from so long ago, would have brought them to their relationship today?

Well, fate would have its way, after all…

A/N: So we've come to the end of As Fate Wills It. I had to make some reference to the title at the end! I originally intended for it to be merely Nationals Finals and that's it, but the words kept coming.

A part of me doesn't want to let go of Seiichi and Reiko – I've been writing them for more than two years now so they're familiar and comfortable characters to play with. But at the same time, writing this has really exhausted my capacity for writing POT. It'll be a while before I think of doing anything major for this fandom. I'll be working on Untitled: the Hidden History (D Gray-Man, also a multi-chaptered story) after this instead.

In any case, thank you taking the time to read all the way to this point, for the pretty reviews, and the favorites and alerts. Well, you know what I mean! They make me feel like I did something somewhat near passable and not utter complete rubbish! Thanks! –iirse

P.S. It feels weird not typing "See you next week" anymore.