Title: One in Eternity
Pairings: The epitome of kawaii-ness: TezukaFuji. May we be blessed by more of their fanservice.
Warning: Characters-death, probably sappy if you see it that way. Unbeta-ed, because I was just too lazy to look for a beta. Umm.. OOC-ness and of course, shounen-ai, yaoi, BL—whatever you want to call them. But this pairing is the epitome of perfection in TeniPuri, how could you see any problem in that?
Disclaimer: Don't own any of the Tennis no Oujisama property. Tezuka is Fuji's, Fuji is Tezuka's, and the brilliant Konomi-sensei who has graciously given us countless TeFu-ness owns the two of them. The plot was inspired by a true story, so it's practically not mine, either..
A/N: This fic was actually finished before V-Day, along with three other fics from other fandoms. But my school is EVIL they wouldn't even let me borrow one computer from the computer lab just because seniors don't get computer class anymore and are supposed to concentrate on more BORING classes for the preparation of the National Exam. So, all that anger combined with my stress of having the university entrance tests getting closer… this was what I wrote. A sappy death-fic.
I apologize. TT-TT But enjoy, though, and please leave a comment to make my day brighter? XD
A Tennis no Oujisama fanfiction:
One in Eternity
Bathed in brilliant sparks of bright red and orange hues of the slowly setting sun, the four-storied house loomed over them majestically. Judging from the style, it was probably built around the reign of the Queen of Victoria.
They were there only for the pictures, really. Nothing else.
Fuji had pulled him along and went into the house, striding across its gigantic hall and heading straight for the huge staircase. This house had a legend, Fuji had chimed enthusiastically all the way upstairs, something about the balcony and entwined destiny. The folks around even had a poem about it.
When he asked what poem it was, Fuji only shrugged nonchalantly and said he had forgotten all about it. He added that it wasn't his intention to come here, anyway. They were here to take a picture of the sunset that was said to be magnificent if seen from the highest balcony of the old house.
They went to the highest balcony in the house—on the fourth floor, a balcony in front of a big, long unoccupied bedroom. The ball of flame was there right before their eyes, oh-so-magnificent as it slowly sank to merge with the horizon line, spreading layers of reddish and orange colors all over the blue canvas that was the sky. Hypnotized by the marvelous view, they fell silent for moments—standing on the balcony, fingers linked tightly, and the identical silver bands they wore on their ring fingers gleamed, reflecting the sunrays—admiring the painting of the Almighty.
And then Fuji absent-mindedly asked him whether he believed in the legend. A question which he answered by raising one fine eyebrow and a counter if Fuji actually believed the legend.
His lithe lover only shrugged and grinned, and suggested to just try it out.
The slightest of smile graced his stoic expression, then. Look at how much childish innocence his long-friend still had after all this years. And so he replied that they were actually a little bit too old to try things out of curiosity.
But still, their eyes locked, and Fuji gazed into his eyes deeply, captivating him into a pool of azure ocean of his eyes, and uttered the three words they so rarely said to each other.
He couldn't—he just couldn't not bend down and captured Fuji's lips into his—gently, loving, caring—and when they drew back, Fuji's blue eyes were dancing.
The sun had set.
"We're entwined now."
They were only 29—both of them.
Fuji had never thought Tezuka would be going ahead. They were still young and supposedly had a long way before them—they hadn't even hit thirty, yet. Still, Tezuka went ahead of everybody else. Tezuka—the ever calm, collected one. So very healthy and strong and reliable, the one who always kept his guard up…
And yet, he went ahead.
It wasn't fair, Eiji thought, as he once again squeezed Fuji's hand in his gently. The honey brown-haired man sitting next to him on the couch turned to him, blue eyes open in rare honesty, as a smile appeared on his face.
"I'm fine, Eiji." He said serenely. "Really."
From across the room, Oishi watched them in concern. He had expected Fuji to get the biggest blow of Tezuka's departure, but the Tensai seemed to take it rather well. It confused him at first, to see his friend smiling so serenely at everyone, and no doubt, it was worrying him a little. But then, as he thought about it again, maybe both Tezuka and Fuji had had no regret. They'd been happy and everything had been going so well between them, even in the past month where Tezuka had depended entirely on Fuji.
Oishi liked to think that his friend had lived his life to the most.
Two middle-aged women approached Fuji and Eiji slowly, and both men quickly stood up as Fuji stepped forward. He barely had just murmured an "Okaasama," before a pair of slender arms enveloped him into a tight hug. Tezuka Ayana sobbed onto his shoulder, and Fuji inhaled deeply, before whispering soothing words into his mother-in-law's ear. Close by, Fuji Yoshiko stood, eyes red and puffy, acknowledged Eiji's presence with a grateful nod.
Eiji forced a wistful smile. "I will be right back, Fuji-san." He mentally cringed at the formality of his voice. Oh, how unfair. This wasn't supposed to happen. Not this. Not in the middle of happiness.
Fuji Yoshiko followed the red-head's figure as he moved across the room to speak to the former fukubuchou of Seigaku, before turning her attention back to her son. Still holding Ayana, Fuji flashed his mother a smile, and drew back from Ayana's embrace. Motioning both women to sit on the couch on either side of him, he sank back onto the warm, comfortable couch.
Tezuka Ayana fondled the tissue she held in her hands, hesitatingly caught Yoshiko's eyes, before saying, "It's okay, you know, Shuusuke. To cry."
"It's true," Yoshiko piped up. "It's not healthy to bottle up your feelings. We're all feeling the same. We all lose him."
Fuji blinked once at his mother, and a serene smile worked its way up on his physiognomy. "No, Okaasan, you don't understand. I've cried, probably more than enough. I actually wonder if I still have any tears left." He sighed. "Moreover, I don't think there's something I have to cry over. Kunimitsu was happy. He told me that."
Two pairs of different colored eyes fogged up again upon his statement.
"He asked me to hold him. That was the first time he'd ever asked for that," a weak chuckle escaped from his throat. "But now that I think of it… in a way, maybe he was the one holding me. Not the other way around."
A hand covered his, and Fuji looked up to lock eyes with his own mother. Squeezing the hand, he smiled sincerely. "He told me that he was happy to be alive. That he was glad to have lived his life the way he did. And that… I was the one of the best things ever happened to him.
"We talked about a lot of things. I was surprised that after all this years, there were still things about him I didn't know.. or probably didn't realize. I'm glad I had the chance to know the rest about him."
A genuine sob escaped from Yoshiko. Fuji gently cup his mother's cheek with his free hand and wiped the rolling tear with his thumb.
"Heaven knows I've cried enough for my own selfishness, Okaasan. And now, I would not cry. Kunimitsu was happy, and I would not cry over his happiness." He closed his eyes and continued firmly, "I want him to rest in peace."
As his mother broke into tears, Fuji drew her into a tight embrace. He felt his mother's hands enclosed his back, and he wondered if maybe, just maybe, he was the one who needed to be embraced, to be reassured..
But he was alright.
He knew that.
Fuji Yuuta was the only witness of Tezuka's departure—other than his older brother, of course.
He had been there, standing on the far corner of the room, hidden in shadows, watching intently—worriedly—as his brother moved cautiously to hold Tezuka. Worried whispers and calm, reassuring murmurs were exchanged, and the two figures settled down.
Yuuta watched everything. He saw each movement, he heard each sound. He'd had the feeling that it was probably almost the end, and he knew his older brother felt it too when he saw the way Fuji held onto the body in his arms desperately.
Yuuta watched, Yuuta listened. Every movement, every word, every tone—everything—imprinting each scene the seconds passed into his deepest memory. He wanted to remember, because he knew he was the only one who could—other than his brother. And when his brother couldn't remember anymore, Yuuta wanted to remember for him.
He knew, though, that none of the two figures was aware of his presence. They were too intent on each other's existence to notice his. Because it was the last minutes—or probably seconds they had. Yuuta was non-existent then.
They were in their own world, and nothing else existed save for each other. Nothing else mattered. Nothing else would take them away from this last moments. Nothing and no one else. There were only the two of them, and probably reality itself had ceased to exist in their eyes.
Yuuta had felt so insignificant back then.
But he watched and listened, as Tezuka uttered a weak, "Let's talk," and Fuji had smiled and replied, "Let's talk."
The seconds ticked by, and Yuuta carved each of it into the deepest corner of his heart.
"About climbing the Everest.. I was serious,"
"I know you were." The fear of loss masked in forced chuckle. "I know that your life isn't only about tennis, Mitsu. You're not Echizen."
Every slightly shaking tone in his brother's voice. Every quivering smile appeared on his face.
"When you were… at the convention in Jenewa.. the cacti died,"
"Saa, so you really did give her too much water, huh, Kunimitsu? Should I give you a punishment, then?"
The slightest sly tone inserted in the half-hearted joke. Every breath taken.
"The summer festival..I'm sorry I couldn't.. take you there. I.. want to.."
"Hey, we could still go next year, ne?"
Every painful gasp. Every choked breath.
Yuuta wanted to remember them all.
"I've never.. said it to you.. enough.."
"I love you, Shuusuke. I really.. do.."
At that time, Yuuta was torn between keep watching and shut himself out completely. This was their privacy, and Yuuta had absolutely no right whatsoever to witness this. But he wanted to remember every second—every second drawing closer to the moment Lady Fate was going to close Tezuka's book.
"I'm.. happy.. to have lived my life… the way I did.."
He had no right to hear it. So Yuuta quickly covered his ears—blocking out any voice, any sound—and for a second, for a second before he too snapped his eyes shut, he saw them kissed—their last kiss—gentle and loving and adorned with tears on his brother's cheeks.
"Sing.. for me?"
That was the next thing he remembered hearing. And he opened his eyes, watching his brother nod and listening to Fuji's voice singing softly as Tezuka closed his eyes and focused on his breath. Then, his chest stopped rising and falling, and Fuji's singing voice was wrecked by soft sobs—
Yuuta knew then that it was the end.
The Lady Fate had closed Tezuka's book.
And now here he was, standing before his brother, clad in a mourning suit, staring in concern at his smiling brother.
"You sure you'd be okay, Aniki? Okaasan and Neesan have to go home, but I can stay the night if you want." Yuuta glanced around the now empty apartment. In front of him, Fuji shook his head, giving him a reassuring smile.
"I'm fine, Yuuta. Saa.. it's nice of you to be worried about me, but I'm fine, really."
"You sure?" Yuuta still found it hard to believe that the smile on Fuji's face was real. Sincere. Yes, he'd learned long a go how to differentiate between his brother's fake smiles and real, sincere ones, and he knew perfectly that this one was real, even though it was hard to believe.
He followed Fuji towards the door. Opening it slowly, he turned to his brother and said, "Just call me anytime if you need me, Aniki. I'll be there."
The smile widened in gratitude. "I know, Yuuta. Thank you."
Stepping out of the apartment, he gave his brother a small wave. But before the younger Fuji closed the door, the ever-smiling Tensai called him, "Yuuta."
"Come again tomorrow, ne? I don't have to invite you, do I?"
His bed—their bed was cold.
It was odd to have the bed all for himself. He never liked it—not even when Tezuka was still here, the times when they had a fight and ended up sleeping in different rooms.
He lay on his back, blue eyes wide open, staring blankly at the ceiling. Memories rushed, flooding his brain and mind, leaving no space unoccupied by flashes of a certain dark brown-haired, hazel-eyed man.
"You're a left-handed, aren't you, Tezuka-kun?"
Seishun Gakuen. The naivete, the innocence of early teenagers. A place where the two of them learned things they didn't learn in school. Of friendship, of rivalry, of bonds, of pains, of love—
"I want to play a match with you, too."
The very first seed of love was planted there. They were curious, unaware of what had been buried under the soil. Naïve, anticipating in excitement as they waited for the flowers to bloom—knowing none whatsoever about the flower.
"Where is the real you?"
"It's the best feeling…"
The seed was taken in great care. Both of them watered it—subconsciously or not. When it finally grew, they curiously explored each and every part of it—curious as to what the flower would be like.
"Saa.. I think this is the kind of thing that could make you smile, ne, Tezuka?"
"…You can make me smile, Fuji."
And then, the first bud appeared and bloomed into a flower they had never seen before. Curious and excited at the same time, they explored, slowly knowing, slowly understanding what the flower was.
"I like you.. I think."
"Really? Well, Tezuka, I love you."
Again and again, new buds appeared and blossomed into new flowers, and they watched happily. Content, that they now understood what it was.
"I'll be coming back to Japan this weekend."
"Moving in together sounds great, na, Mitsu?"
"…My family approve of us."
It wasn't easy to take care of the flowers, of course. The two of them went through a whole lot of things. Family, friends, opposing society—their track was not at all an easy one. He liked to think that it was harder than executing his six counters at the same time, and he was proud that they had passed it safely.
"This house has a legend, you know. Something about the balcony and entwined destiny."
"Do you believe it?"
"I don't know. Should we try it out?"
The house. The magnificent sunset. They had come together—or rather, he dragged Tezuka with him, but it wasn't like Tezuka really minded anyway. They stood there, in the highest balcony, gazing at the sunset—just the two of them.
He hadn't really believe in that legend, really. Perhaps, it was only one of his whims. Even so, when his cerulean eyes locked with Tezuka's hazel eyes, he just had to say it. Say the three words they rarely exchanged—because really, they didn't really need to say it. They could hear it in the silence shared between them.
"I love you."
The kiss. Pure, soft, gentle, languid, caring, loving—it was everything. Everything was perfect. They were happy, content, and the sky seemed to be smiling down on them.
He should've known that the Lady Fate loved to toy with people's feelings.
"Yes, this is Tezuka Shuusuke… eh? Excuse me?....Kunimitsu's..in a car accident?"
His world had been thrown into a chaos at the second the news reached his ears. Lady Fate took everything from him. Tezuka was in a comatose for a whole week—a week when he practically passed in a daze of confusion and painful waiting, a week where nothing—no one's existence mattered.
And when Tezuka finally opened his eyes, he'd been so relieved.
"..sorry.. to make you worried.."
"I've missed you."
But Tezuka didn't—never—get better. Instead, his condition grew worse, to the point that he had to rely completely on Fuji. And it hurt to see his lover like that. Tezuka was the strongest, the most reliable one, and seeing him in such helpless state hut Fuji more than anything.
And last night—that night—Fuji knew everything had to end.
"I'm happy… to have lived my life.. the way I did.."
"..I'm glad you are.."
"You're.. one of the best things.. ever happened to me, Shuusuke.."
"…stop it. Don't.. Mitsu, I.."
He had cried. And it was perfectly normal, for there wouldn't be anyone who wouldn't cry when their lover was struggling with Death itself.
"Look at me. Shuusuke."
He did. And they kissed.
Slow, languid. Loving. Cherishing every second left. Yet, the ever-burning passion for him was still there. Everything was Tezuka, he could only sense Tezuka—but there were tears—he wasn't sure if those were his or Tezuka's—but it was salty, and he could taste it.
"Sing.. for me?"
The way Tezuka smiled—his way of asking Fuji to let go. His way of telling Fuji that he had no regrets so—don't cry, don't cry Shuusuke, please don't cry, Fuji chanted in his own mind—he began to sing and watched with blurry cerulean eyes as Tezuka closed his eyes.
He couldn't hold back his sobs when he literally felt Tezuka's life slipping away from his hold.
No fair. Lady Fate, you are so unfair, he accused. Tezuka was not supposed to end like this. Not like this. Not like this…
Because it made his own soul wandered away, constantly looking for its behalf at each second that passed.
Cerulean and hazel eyes clashed fiercely.
Soft gasps and breathless moans.
They were one.
Echizen never belived in true love.
People changed, they were constantly at move, and they were always able to move on. To open a new page of their own book of life, and fill it with new things and feelings. They forgot about things and persons they cherished, because they moved as the Time went on.
That was why true love didn't exist. It was only a fairy-tale—the same as 'love-at-the-first-sight' and 'live-happily-ever-after'.
And yet, now, standing in the living room of the apartment his two senpai previously owned, wearing the exact same mourning suit he'd worn just yesterday, he wondered if he could still not believe in true love.
He was here yesterday to attend Tezuka's funeral. To say his condolences for the loss of his former buchou. To see Fuji's serene smile acknowledging his presence, thanking him for coming. To say some reassuring words to Fuji, about how everything would be okay and how "Tezuka-buchou wouldn't like to see you sad, right, Fuji-senpai?"
And now, here he was. To attend Fuji's.
When Eiji called him this morning, choking in tears and telling him that Fuji had gone in peace—even smiling in his sleep, and would never ever wake up again—he'd thought that it was only a joke. A truly horrible joke. And it wasn't funny at all.
It wasn't funny either, when he finally had to believe that it wasn't a joke.
He looked around. It felt like Tezuka and Fuji's traces—presence?—were carved in every inch of this apartment. Absent-mindedly, he reached for the small, handy phone book placed next to the phone table and flipped its pages.
He stopped dead at the last page of the book.
There, scribbled in a neat handwriting—Fuji's, he would guess—was a poem. A poem he'd known so well, because he had been the one who read it over the phone for Fuji.
One in eternity.
True love existed after all, Echizen decided, as he tore the page and folded it neatly, before tucking it into his pants' pocket.
"There's an interesting legend about a house I visited when I was in Winchester. I actually came there to see the sunset from its highest balcony. It was magnificent."
"Saa… magnificent enough to be captured in my pictures, Echizen?"
"You have to see it for yourself, Fuji-senpai."
"So, what is this interesting legend?"
"Well, they said that if two lovers kissed on the highest balcony in that house when the sun was setting, their destinies would be entwined forever."
"Do you believe it?"
"Me? Hell no. It's ridiculous. There's no such a thing like that. But the folks around there really believed it. They even had a poem about it. I just thought you'd be interested."
"Yeah, the guide gave me a note with the poem in it. Want me to read it for you?"
"Sure. Maybe I can use it for my article."
One kiss when the sun and horizon merges
One kiss that the highest balcony witnesses
One that shall bind us
Our destiny, entwines forever more
One shall we become
If one dies, soon the other follows
One in eternity, yes
One in eternity.
A/N: In the end… I killed both of them. *weeps* But it does have a happy ending… sort of. They will meet again in the Prince of Afterlife. *nods*
This is inspired.. by a true story. My friend's mother died, and my family came to say our condolences. When we were about to go home, the father asked us to come again tomorrow without him having to invite us. The next day, he died in his sleep.
Isn't that a true love? *sighs* TeFu should be just as beautiful.. and they are, ne? XD
Enthusiastic comments and constructive criticisms are LUFFED. Keep the flames, though, it's already way too hot in here. Oh, global warming..
-isumi'kivic' and Ilde-