Of Books and Knives

by stones

II. Of Stalls and Mirrors

In which Hayaka finds that there's more than one use for an empty bathroom and Tenshima realizes there's an horny animal in all of us. Takes place during Ch. 9


She scratched the fluffy collar around her neck, dreaming of the moment she could finally take this Christmas outfit off. Not that it wasn't cute. Oh no. The thing was damn adorable and she, well, she loved looking damn adorable. It felt suffocating and heavy and she continued to pick at it as she gave Katou a polite smile before excusing herself.

"You have to be back at your job soon," he reminded her, eyes glued on her as she lingered in the doorway, the rest of the class downing frosting covered cake serving as their background music.

"I know," she told him, smiling though she found it rather irksome that he would feel the need to tell her this. "I have to go to the restroom. It'll only be a moment, Katou."

He only grunted in response, saying, "Five minutes." She knew that if she wasn't back in time she'd have to deal with a search party arriving at her stall door. She closed the door behind her quietly, thankful for the peace the empty hallway gave her. Humming happily to herself, she tightened each of her pigtails before heading down the hallway, the restroom sign hanging above a set of doors revealing her destination.

Normally she would have been nervous. Being the only girl in a school full of testosterone jerks, the need for a girl's bathroom was minimal. But being as everyone was happily eating cake in the room she had just left, she took it as an okay and she opened the door, letting it shut behind her before she scanned the row of tall bathroom stalls, looking sickly green and rusty, reminding her of the cafeteria's food.

"Creepy," she whispered to herself, not expecting a response.

But she had gotten one. Her blood froze and a scream was bubbling in her throat once she heard a dragging sort of sound, feet moving in the room. She turned her head and covered her mouth, cheeks red with embarrassment.

"You think?" someone had said, followed by silence and the sound of a zipper. "It's not everyday I have an audience watching me use the loo."

She knew she should have walked away or at least looked away. It wasn't polite to watch someone finish up with a urinal, really.

"I'm sorry!" she squeaked, finally covering her eyes with her hands and twisting away.

"No worries," he said, turning his head to look at her before he smiled. "All done anyway."

Still, she kept her eyes closed but listened to the shuffling of his clothes as he moved closer and closer before brushing against her shoulder on the way to wash his hands. She immediately recoiled, the image of his germs coming from his…his thing moving from his hands up his arms and to his shoulder where he had brushed against her. Mumbling some 'ew's to herself, she brushed herself off and finally looked up.

She could only see his back, but if she tilted over to the right she could see his face reflected in the mirror above the sink he was at. His light hair had fallen before his eyes as he calmly lathered soap in his hands and she stared at the movement of his fingers, cradling each other and spreading apart.

"There's no girls bathroom," she told him, feeling the need to explain herself.

"I know," he answered.

"I didn't come to watch you," she continued.

He paused, looked up at the mirror in front of him to glance at her reflection. She, in turn, also watched him through it. The dirt and dust that blanketed the glass made him look blurry, unreal.

"Really?" he responded. "Did you come to help me then? Bless your kind heart."

She gulped at the thought of this and quickly shook her head, holding her hands out to stop him from saying more. "No! No!" She calmed down and blew the hair that had managed to sneak in front of her face away. "No. I came to use the bathroom."

"Then?" he said, looking back at his hands as he let the water wash off all the soap.

"I d-don't have to use it anymore," she said monotonously.

He scrunched his nose in a disgusted way, thinking, before he grinned and shut the water off. Before turning around to face her, he wove his hands in front of him, shaking the water off. "Maybe you should invest in some diapers?"

"No!" she said, brows furrowing, angry at what he was implying. "No," she said quieter, softening her tone. "It's not like that. The feeling just…escaped me."

"Interesting," he commented in a bored tone.

"Yes."

"Would have been a shame," he said as he leaned back against the white, porcelain sink behind him. He crossed his arms as he observed her. "If you had wetted yourself," he explained. "Such a cute outfit ruined."

She looked down at her Christmas outfit as he did the same. "Thanks," she mumbled meekly. She paused as she looked up at him, surprised he had complimented her outfit, yet managed to make fun of her in the sneaky way of his. "There are no worries then for I don't wet myself. I find this topic inappropriate to talk about anyway."

"Hayaka," he started, the way he said her name causing her to stiffen, "you're in a bathroom."

Well, she knew that. "Shouldn't you be in class?" she questioned.

"Ah," he drawled, his lips curving into what she thought was a smirk. "I had to relieve myself but it seems I forgot to run it past you and your minions."

"Very funny," she commented dryly.

"You're always asking me why I am where I am," he observed, "or more specifically, asking me why I'm not doing something that you approve of. I suppose it's usual behavior from a school gang leader."

She stood straighter, noticing the threatening tone in his voice, his jealousy. Narrowing her eyes, she pointed her chin up as she observed him. "I apologize that you feel that way, Tenshima, but I assure you, I didn't mean for it to sound like I was trying to boss you around."

"Very business like," he commented, nodding with approval. "And the key word, I believe, is: trying."

"What?"

"Where's Katou, that sleazy dog?" he cut in.

She spoke quickly. "Katou is not a dog!"

"Oh?" he asked, tilting his head. "It seems I've gotten the wrong impression. Following you at your heels and begging for attention is in no way acting like a dog. You're right."

"You've got some attitude there, Tenshima," she replied, feet subconsciously spreading apart, fixing themselves into a more defensive and angry pose. "He's only being a good friend."

"Is that so?"

"It is so," she snapped. "He's loyal, friendly, and affectionate."

"I'm sorry," he said, feigning an apologetic look on his face. "It seems you've described…a dog."

She glared at him. He only smiled which made her anger rise even more. Biting her lower lip, she tried to control it. Hayaka had always been a sweet, kind girl, never letting her frustration get the best of her. But why was it so easy to feel such emotions around this boy?

"You're no better," she told him. "You tried to trick me before and you don't care to manipulate people's feelings and try to get the best of them. You're a dog, Tenshima. A dirty, low dog."

She regretted as it came out of her mouth. He stood abruptly, pushing himself off the sink to tower over her. She willed herself not to step back, to stay where she was and teach this guy a lesson on the kind of girl she was. Of course he had once tried to rip her head off with fucking knife and had managed in cutting off most of her precious hair. This thought unfortunately tuned her confidence down. Go figure.

"What am I?" he whispered, stepping closer to her so that they were only a few inches apart. He looked down at her and in an attempt not to seem nervous, she kept her gaze straight, focusing on the middle of his uniform clad chest.

She jumped when his arm shot out and his hand gripped her just above her elbow. Still, she didn't look at him, only composed herself and glared harder at his chest. It was silent, the only sounds in the room coming from their breathing and the slow drip of a sink.

"It's rude not to listen," he whispered quietly, calmly, his voice betraying his angry body language. "What am I? What was it you said?"

She opened her lips, breathed in quietly, and looked up at him, glaring before she mumbled, "A low, dirty--"

She didn't have the time to finish. As she spoke, he stepped to the side and pulled her forward before twisting behind her. She was shoved forward into the sink and it dug uncomfortably into her stomach as he continued to press her against it. He had situated himself behind her, effectively trapping her between him and the sink. She was slightly bent against the sink and she had brought her hands up to clench the edges of the sink from surprise. Her butt, from being in such a position, was nestled in his crotch though she had little time to think about it. She was still in mid-sentence.

By this time, her voice had gone from the low mumble to a surprised yell. She finished saying, "--dog!"

She glanced up at the mirror to look at him, breathing deeply from losing her breath from surprise. He wasn't looking at the mirror to see her face. In fact, the image was really creepy to her. In the mirror she could see he was tilted slightly to the left of her and he was coolly observing the back of her head.

"W-What's the big idea?" she asked, trying to sound casual about it.

"A dirty, low dog, was it?" he said, ignoring her. "Isn't that interesting?"

She tried to move away but he leaned over and put his hands next to hers, successfully trapping her. Noticing movement in the mirror, she looked up at it again and noticed he had lifted his head. He was now looking into the mirror and she caught his eye through it. His face was blank.

"I suppose I am much like a dog," he continued, thinking out loud for her to hear it. She stilled against him. "When I'm angry, I can growl like a dog." He paused. "I can lick like a dog, bite like a dog." He smiled and she kept her eyes on the mirror and him. "When a girl is underneath me, I can hump like a dog." To emphasis this, he moved his hips forward and pressed himself against her butt even more.

She made a noise, whether it was surprised or angry, she couldn't tell. Perhaps it was a mixture of both. Once again she struggled against him but he didn't move. Glaring at his reflection and determining that this had gone too far, she spoke. "Let me go, Tenshima."

After a few quiet seconds, he lifted his hands and stood straight, holding his hands up on either side of his head. The feeling of having her space, of his arms not around her, felt odd for a moment, but she ignored it as she straightened up and turned, still very close to him so that their bottom halves were still against each other. Fixing her outfit that had risen up her thigh from the movement, she kept her eye on him, suspicious and angry.

She paused as she moved around, feeling something dig into her upper thigh. Frozen, her eyes gave away her shock and embarrassment. He felt like he should grin or something, but his face remained blank.

"It's a friend dying to see you," he told her. This only made her freak out more and she backed up as far as she could, the sink keeping her in place. Seeing her distressed, he only rolled his eyes to the ceiling and lifted his hand to dig into his pocket. "Don't flatter yourself," he grunted, finally pulling something out. He held the object in front of her. He flipped the blade out and waved it in front of her.

It was sort of like déjà vu to her. The shiny knife, her reflection in it, her hair so very close to it.

"All your moving around put it out of place," he finished.

"I'm tired of seeing that thing," she mumbled. "I hate it."

"I'm sure it thinks the same thing of you," he replied, shrugging slightly as he turned his eyes away from her to appreciate his knife. He had just polished it, mind you.

"Your devotion to that thing is disgusting," she commented.

He quirked his eyebrow, obviously amused. "I would say the same thing to all those fools drooling over you."

Her features darkened, not finding that funny. At all. "Can you please remove yourself from my person, Tenshima? I have to get going."

"Of course," he said, backing up. She relaxed once he did this, catching her breath and composing herself after everything that just happened, not being afraid to admit she was still all anxious and nervous. "I suppose Katou set a time limit for you?"

"No, he did--" she started but then stopped, realizing he had. Five minutes.

She heard Tenshima chuckle. Really chuckle. And she had to admit, if she wasn't so flustered, she probably would have cracked a smile.

"I'm my own person," she said. "I can do whatever I like, thank you very much."

"You just tell yourself that," he told her.

She made a frustrated noise as she gave him a look. "I hate how you do that." She could tell he was interested, wanted her to go on, so she did. "Give me those little comments that make me so mad."

"If I were to list the things I dislike about you," he started, "we'd be here for a while." She didn't get angry with the comment and thought she was just getting used to him and his attitude. "But that outfit is not one of them."

She paused speechless, unsure what to say. But she was saved by the opening door, or rather the worried Katou. They both turned as the door opened. Katou stood in the door way, fixed with a glare as he surveyed the scene.

Well, there was Tenshima and Hayaka. Standing way too close, for one. Hayaka's hair was messed up, one of the ponytails about to fall out of its hold. Tenshima stood there with a knife. Okay… a knife. That wasn't good. Katou cleared his throat and asked the inevitable and rather predictable question.

"What's going on here?!"

Hayaka backed away from Tenshima and sent Katou a polite smile. Hoping it would calm him down. Tenshima only flipped closed his knife and stuffed it back into his pocket while putting his empty hand into his other pocket. He also cleared his throat before turning and walking towards Katou and the door. He paused in front of him for a second and shrugged.

"I was only using the bathroom," he explained before looking back at Hayaka who stood in the middle of the bathroom, nervously petting the fur around her collar that had gotten very itchy in a matter of seconds. Tenshima then looked back at Katou and quietly spoke so that only he could hear him. "I didn't know she was so rambunctious. I would keep a closer eye on her and try to relieve some of that sexual tension of hers."

He then went to leave but before he was out of sight, he turned around lazily and said, "Until later then, School Gang Leader." The last evidence of his presence were his footsteps that slowly faded away to nothing.

Katou paused. Sexual tension? Rambunctious? What the hell was that supposed to mean? He whipped his head to the side to look at Hayaka.

It was silent as Katou and Hayaka stared at each other. He was obviously expecting an explanation, one that she had to make up on the spot because there was no way in hell she was about to tell the truth.

"I'm fine," she said in a small squeak.

Katou wasn't happy with the explanation, pretty much because it hardly passed as an explanation. But he could tell she didn't want to talk about it any further. Besides, she looked a little hungry and flustered. Probably meant she was getting a fever or something. He would have to explain it to her employer that it would be best if took the rest of the day off and relaxed. Yes, so much to do.

"If you say so, School Gang Leader," he said, holding his arm out to signalize for her to come toward him. And she did so, hanging her head shyly. Once she was near him, he put his hand on her back and guided her from the bathroom. The hallway was dark, everybody probably still enjoying their Christmas cake she had brought for them.

"Did everyone enjoy the cake?" she asked, trying to clear the awkward air.

"Of course they did," he said. "It was from you, wasn't it?"

She nodded and pursed her lips together.

"School Gang Leader," Katou started, stopping in step. She stopped too to look at him, concerned at his sincere tone. "If you ever need anything, I'm here. You know that right?"

"Of course," she said, smiling kindly at him.

"Good," he said, satisfied with their incredibly deep conversation. "We should go then. You look a little sickly. Perhaps we should make you some tea..." He continued to blab on as they started to walk again.

And she smiled the whole way. Tenshima had given her yet another scare. Well, she was pretty sure it was a scare. Whatever it was, it made her feel all wobbly and hot. That couldn't be good, right? But Katou had come to her rescue, she guessed.

Yes, he was a good dog…er friend.

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A/N: So this won't be a regular update kind of thing. Just whenever I'm bored and feel like writing, I'll put something up. These are all meant to fit somehow into the manga. Whether it's successful or not, that's my intention with these. I love Tenshima for hardly having a part in the manga. I really have the liberty to write him as I think he is. Well, I hope you liked. :)

Tenshima/Hayaka are still love.