Title: survival rate
Fandom: Lovely Complex
Word Count: 716
Disclaimer: I own nothing.

Otani is the only boy she knows who's noticeably taller than her. He calls her shrimp on a regular basis and her forehead touches his shoulder, and it's really rather wonderful. Today, he's holding her lunch out of reach and maybe she's kind of, sort of, really crazy in love with him.

"What's the matter, midget?" he's saying with his little lopsided smirk. "Can't reach?"

"Shut up, you mammoth!" she snaps, and climb up onto one of the desks. He gawks at her.

"What're you doing!"

"Getting my lunch back. Duh!"

When she lands on him, she's holding her bento and he's holding her waist with his longer fingers splayed over her lower back and his palms flush with his hips. They stare at each other until someone coughs in the doorway. Risa lurches to her feet.

"Keep your hands off me, pervert!"

Otani sneers. "You're the one who practically threw yourself into my arms!"


"I'd like to see you try, dwarf!"

Yeah, she's totally nuts about him.

When Umiboozu comes to town, Otani buys her a ticket and practically kidnaps her so she'll go with him.

"But don't think this is a date or anything," he says quickly, while dragging her down the street by the wrist. "It's just, you're the only person I know who listens to him and I hate going to these kinds of things alone."

"… okay," she says, after a beat, and can't hide her smile when he glances over his shoulder at her. It's okay, though, because it's not like he's trying to hide his, either.

Risa doesn't remember much of the concert. What she does remember are Otani's bright eyes and the way he screamed all the lyrics, the way he held her hand so he wouldn't lose her in the crowd.

She remembers wanting to kiss him very badly, and she remembers grabbing the collar of his shirt during an intermission and pulling him down to her level while his eyes widened and her hands shook and –


Nobuko looks rather bored and is examining her nails when she goes, "Risa, calm down. It's not that big of a deal."

Risa, understandably, disagrees. "I KISSED OTANI."

Nobuko sighs. "Risa—"

"MY LIFE IS OVER." She hangs out the window dejectedly and manages to scare some of the students below. She's pretty sure the cloud of dust she's seeing running towards the school is Haruka, but she can't be sure.

"Risa," Nobuko says blandly, and pulls her by the collar towards her desk, "get away from the window."

Risa flails, breaks away, goes back to the window. Nobuko growls behind her. "I'M AN IDIOT."


She lifts her head, still hanging half out the window, and blinks at Otani. He's leaning in the doorway with one eyebrow raised and her heart jumps into her throat. "Uh," she says brilliantly. He snorts, steps inside, and closes the door behind him.

(The world stops—)

They're on the roof. He's finally set her down, after throwing her over his shoulder and carrying her out of the classroom, but he's still holding her elbow and the wind is ruffling his hair. He keeps looking between her and the sky and maybe she's terrified of this and him, and it's suddenly becoming very hard to breathe.

"Koizumi," he goes, "look—"

"JUST REJECT ME NOW," she wails, and he gives her this half-exasperated, half-amused look only she can ever seem to get.

"Moron," he mutters, and kisses her.

(—and starts again.)