This fic is dedicated to all the lovely La Corda authors out there, especially the HinoYunoki fans, without whom I would never have got my necessary doses of wish-fulfilment for that pair. And a very happy birthday to Yunoki-senpai….I do hope this fic is better than Touch.
Background: Set right after Kaji's arrival at Seisou.
WARNING: There isn't enough in here to qualify for an M rating, more of a strong T maybe, but it's not for kiddies.
DISCLAIMER: La Corda d'Oro (game, manga, anime) are not mine. Though if someone can wrap one or more of the Stella Quintet boys up for me as a present, I say, gimme! I want my very own harem, and it's unfair that Kahoko gets all of them.
There really wasn't any escaping from it, thought Kahoko with a sigh. Ever since Kaji Aoi's somewhat sensational arrival at Seisou earlier in the week, there hadn't been any respite from the gossip and the finger-pointing that had followed the wake of his, er, greeting to her. And it simply wasn't stopping, for the plain and simple reason that he followed her everywhere she went.
All in all, Kahoko was desperately in need of a break from the blond newcomer, and she was going to take one, even if it meant exploiting the fact that Kaji, being new, wasn't too well acquainted with the geography of the Seisou campus just yet.
She felt just a little bit guilty about it, but she really did need time to herself, and she wasn't getting it with him around. Kahoko sighed in anticipation as she climbed the stairs to the roof: no one knew she was going there, and the prospect of being undisturbed was one she relished.
She pushed the door open, blinking a little as her eyes adjusted to the late-afternoon sunshine.
And then blinked again, as she realized that she wasn't alone on the roof, and the presence of the long purple mane in front of her meant she was certainly nowhere near being undisturbed.
Kahoko gaped, trying to think of a way to get out of there before Yunoki Azuma or his black side noticed she was there. She knew, though, even as she was backing away, that it was useless: he had already straightened up from putting his flute away, and was in the act of turning his head towards her.
"Ah, Hino-san." He smiled. "We meet again." Kahoko remained standing where she was, wondering if his formal use of her name meant he was going to behave this time.
"It's ok, Yunoki-senpai, I'm just leaving…" her voice trailed off.
He took a step towards her "I'd hate to keep you from whatever it is that you need to do."
"But if it isn't too much to ask, Kahoko, what is it that brings you up here looking so exasperated?"
"It's nothing, Yunoki-senpai- I didn't come here to practice-" After all this time, the emergence of his dark side was as disconcerting as it had been on the day she'd first seen it, up on this very roof.
"But really, Hino, you never come up here unless you mean to practice or vent. Since you have no instrument today, I'm going to assume the latter was what you came here for." He stepped closer to her, laying a hand on her shoulder.
"It's not-" but her next words were cut off by a series of squeals borne in on the wind.
"I can't believe he did that!" shrieked a voice Kahoko vaguely remembered as belonging to some first-year girl. "Why Kahoko-senpai, of all people?"
Kahoko's eyes widened as she caught the mention of her name. She knew exactly what the squealing girl was talking about, and she wasn't one bit keen to have the beautiful demon in front of her hear any of it- though in her embarrassment, she had failed to register the slight narrowing of his eyes. …but caught as she was, she had no choice but to stay there and listen to what came next
"Amou-senpai told me he told her he'd come to Seisou just for her.", piped another voice, sounding envious.
Kahoko decided that what she really wanted, besides gagging and binding Amou, was to drop into a hole in the ground. Preferably for life. It had been embarrassing enough the first time around, but with Yunoki-senpai right there, it was pure torture.
She took her eyes off her shoes long enough to glance up at him. As expected, he was smirking, though for some reason, he didn't look entirely pleased.
"Yunoki-senpai?" He didn't answer, but just then, a third voice chimed in, effectively sealing her fate.
"And he kissed her! In front of the whole class, too!" The owner of the voice was clearly jealous, but Kahoko couldn't see why- she'd have been all too happy to let whoever it was take her place for those mortifying few seconds back in her classroom. She had half a mind to storm downstairs and set things straight, when the hand on her shoulder suddenly tightened its grip, and she found herself jerked back a step.
"My, my, we're in a hurry today, aren't we?" Kahoko shivered as the voice she'd come to think of as Dark Yunoki chuckled softly.
"Yunoki-senpai-" she began, in as dignified a manner as she could muster with him standing right behind her. "Please let me go. I'm about to be late for my next class."
It wasn't for another twenty minutes, and they both knew that- Seisou might have treated its two departments as separate schools in all but name, but they still ran on the same time table.
"So he kissed you, did he?" His breath was light against her ear, and Kahoko's mouth suddenly went dry.
There was deathly silence for a moment before she spoke.
"On my- hand" Kahoko whispered, not sure just why that detail mattered.
"So you have a-" he laughed again, "not-so-secret admirer now, do you, Kahoko?" His left arm slid around her shoulders. "A chivalrous one, at that."
"No, I don't," she retorted, squirming in his hold. "And you're hardly the one to talk about not-so-secret admirers, Yunoki-senpai- you have a whole club full of them!"
"It must have been quite a sight." He ignored her jibe- he'd punish her for it soon enough, but it was too much fun playing with her. "What was it like?"
"I said, what was it like?" His right hand drifted down to lift hers. "This?", and Kahoko wondered what he was doing.
The next second, she gasped as he placed a kiss squarely in the centre of her palm.
"Yunoki-senpai!" She turned in his arms, trying to put some distance between them, but his grip on her hand remained unbroken.
"Tell me." His voice was soft, but still with that edge of darkness, and it was all she could do to focus on his words- what he'd just done had shot her composure to pieces, and they both knew it.
"Was it like that when he kissed you, Kahoko?" She looked up at him, cheeks flaming, but remained silent. "I asked you a question." He stroked her hand, and heard her exhale sharply. "And you're not going anywhere until you've answered it."
She looked down and drew in a rather shaky breath, which he watched with some satisfaction. Of all the good days to corner her…
"Do you think you could let go of me, Yunoki-senpai?"
His only response was to draw the ribbon out of her ponytail as he ran his hand through her hair. "I said, you're not going anywhere."
"It wasn't like that when Kaji-kun kissed my hand." Her voice was so soft, he had to bend his head a little closer to hers to catch all the words.
He smiled a little, enjoying her discomfiture. "And how, exactly, was it different?"
"Answer me, Kahoko." His eyes looked steadily into hers, and she suddenly noticed, almost as if she were in a dream, that her left hand, the one he wasn't holding, was now gripping the lapel of his jacket.
"I…I can't." She whispered.
"Try." His hands moved to her shoulders, and Kahoko took a tentative step backwards.
She looked away from him, willing her cheeks to be a little less red. "He didn't mean to embarrass me, or make me uncomfortable, and he wasn't pretending for anyone else's benefit." He didn't make me feel like this, either, she thought, and my hand wasn't tingling for several minutes afterwards, but there was no need for Yunoki-senpai to know that.
His eyes were dark as he watched her. "And you're saying I do."
"Yunoki-senpai, you have to let me go." Her voice was so soft that he almost didn't catch the words, but he smiled.
"And why is that?"
"You wouldn't want anyone to see us like this, would you?"
"What if I said I didn't mind?" he murmured in her ear, noting with satisfaction that it was turning crimson. His breath tickled its outer curve as he spoke again, and she shivered. "Would you mind Kaji-kun coming up here right this second?"
"Of course I would!" she huffed, indignant. "That would hurt his feelings, and you're not being fair, Yunoki-senpai-"
"Very considerate of his feelings, aren't you, Kahoko?' He caressed the nape of her neck, and Kahoko panicked a little at the tingling sensation that ran along her spine, wondering why this was happening to her…and why she was letting it.
"-and anyway, we're not like that- not a couple, I mean- so why would you want to do this- "
One hand slid to her waist, and she drew in a sharp breath. He spoke, his breath soft against her ear once more. "That's true, isn't it? We're not a couple."
"Which is why you should let me go, before anyone comes in!" Her gaze resolutely fixed on the floor, Kahoko completely missed the predatory gleam in the eyes of the boy holding her.
"Hmm…I'm not used to being given orders by playthings, Kahoko." His voice dipped seductively low: she sensed, rather than felt, the brush of his cheek against her ear, followed by the tightening of his grip on her waist as he slid his arm fully around it. "Especially not when I'm playing with them."
"I w-wasn't…" she stammered, her pulse going at triple its usual speed as his head dipped even lower, the side of his face resting against her neck. She fought the urge to close her eyes. "Yunoki-senpai…"
Her words ended on a short gasp as he turned his face to bury it fully in her neck, his lips pressing lightly into the curve just above her shoulder, not quite kissing her but making her frighteningly, acutely aware of the position they were in- and the fact that it was one she needed to get out of quickly.
It was just unfortunate that her body was in no way inclined to comply…
He nuzzled her neck, and Kahoko almost whimpered. Azuma smirked in satisfaction as he felt the response she was trying to stifle. Lifting his head to look into her eyes, he smiled at her. She stared up at him, wide-eyed with surprise and shyness…and belatedly realized that her arms had wound themselves around his neck without her noticing.
Smoothing one long lock of red hair out of her eyes, he touched his forehead to hers, and smiled again at the look of shock on her face. After all, he'd taken considerable liberties with her before, and even kissed her when she was pretending to be his fiancée – but it was still rather disarming to find that Kahoko's incredible denseness went hand in hand with an incredible lack of experience with boys.
Which in no way meant that he was any less inclined to play with her…
He lowered his head again, burying his face in the curve of one slim shoulder, and she trembled as she felt the shape of his lips against her neck. He spoke, the words barely more than a rush of air on her heated skin.
"I've told you, Kahoko, that's not what you call me when we're alone together." He nipped lightly at her earlobe, one hand moving up to tangle in her hair. Her breath hitched: she was dimly aware that her hands were now fisted in the fabric of his shirt, and a small corner of her mind registered the thought that this was a terrible idea, but it didn't feel like one.
He kissed her neck again, his eyelashes fluttering against her delicate skin, and it was all Kahoko could do to remember to breathe, as warmth spiked through every inch of her. "That was only pretending for…" she trailed off as his lips brushed her ear once more, struggling to remember the name of the girl as his fingers trailed down her back.
. "You know I'll punish you, right?" His voice was mild as he held her, a mildness belied by the fact that his heart was racing against hers.
Her cheeks went hot as her head cleared. "I…..I can't!" Even thinking of his given name and the circumstances under which she'd last used it was mortifying enough…
He chuckled softly. "You're thinking it now, aren't you?"
He lifted a hand to her face, tilting her chin up. "Should I show you just how you'll be punished?" He lowered his head, resting his forehead against hers once more, and Kahoko couldn't help but be uncomfortably aware that his mouth was mere inches away from hers.
"No.." she whispered, and gasped at the pressure of his lips on her collarbone. She knew just what the 'punishment' would be, but despite every vestige of good sense in her head, she couldn't bring herself to say his name. It was ridiculous, she thought foggily, that she wouldn't permit him that bit of pretend intimacy when what they were doing right now was so much worse.
He touched his mouth to her neck again, trailing soft kisses up its length as Kahoko trembled and blushed. His teeth nipped gently at her ear, and she pulled him closer, so close that he would have had trouble breathing had she been any stronger.
He was now so close to her that she could feel the heat of his breath on her face. One long finger trailed over her lips, tracing their shape as her eyes drifted shut, then snapped wide open again as she realized what it must have looked like- as though she expected, or worse, wanted him to kiss her…
"Say it." he demanded, wondering to himself whether he could actually bring himself to stop if she did say it.
Kahoko shook her head, blushing fiercely.
"You said it before."
"You forced me to." His other hand drifted over the curve of her waist.
"And what makes you think I won't force you again?" He curled one long lock of her hair around his finger, stroking the wisp of red along its length as he watched her. "Within the next ten seconds, if you don't say it first."
Suddenly furious, Kahoko wrenched herself free, taking a step back as she glared at him. "If you think you can just play with me whichever way you please, Yunoki-senpai, you're mistaken."
He took a step closer to her, but she held her ground. "You do make an interesting toy, Kahoko." It infuriated her even more that he was now smirking, like she was a pet puppy who'd thrown a tantrum. And that- heaven help her- he was more beautiful than ever while he was being evil just for her.
"Yunoki-senpai…" she closed her eyes, willing her heart to stop pounding. "No, I suppose I could call you….Azuma." She looked fixedly at his left shoulder, concentrating fiercely on keeping her face from flushing, but knowing that the effort was futile. "Why does it matter so much what I call you anyway?"
His only response was to seize her firmly around the waist, pulling her against him once more. She let out a sharp cry of surprise, struggling for a moment before he steadied her, hands gentle on her back.
"I said it." She grumbled, glaring up at him. "Now if you could just let me go-"
"It's long past ten seconds, Kahoko." and without waiting for her reply, he covered her mouth with his own.
For the space of a heartbeat, Kahoko froze, stunned. She had half thought, in the moment before he kissed her, that his kisses would be like the side of him that she knew- light-hearted, mocking, and careful. But the hands roaming her body were being anything but careful, the mouth ravaging hers was nothing like the gentle touch of lips she had expected, and in the soft exhalations of breath she heard as they kissed, the raw desire had her knees going weak. She knew, even without thinking, that there would be no pulling back: instead, all she could do was press herself even closer to him and return the kiss, shivering slightly at the intensity of his gaze as he pulled away from her to breathe.
Her hair was rumpled and her lips slightly swollen. Any other girl would have looked ridiculous to Yunoki Azuma in that state, but she…she wasn't any other girl, he thought ruefully. He wasn't sure just what it was- whether it was the flush on her cheeks, the stubbornness of her resolve in refusing to do just what he wanted, or even the way she'd sighed as he kissed her- that had him reaching for her to kiss her yet again...and again…and again…
Until the door to the rooftop burst open with a loud clatter. They broke apart at once: Kahoko, still weak at the knees as a result of being very thoroughly kissed, nearly toppled over as Azuma released her, thanking her lucky stars that they hadn't been standing in the direct line of sight of whoever was in the doorway.
"Hihara-senpai!" Kahoko blushed brilliantly red as she saw the familiar head of green hair. Of all the people to almost be caught by…
"Oh, hey, Kaho-chan!" he grinned at her. "Yunoki, I didn't know you were practicing up here."
Yunoki smiled at his friend, his princely mask already back in place. "I'm done, actually."
"Oh, good then." He looked from one to the other, noting how flushed Kahoko was. "I was planning to ask you both to join the Orchestra Club for practice today, if you're free." His brow wrinkled slightly in concern. "But Kaho-chan, I guess you shouldn't do it- you look like you've had a bit too much sun."
"Eh?" She struggled for words, half wishing that Hihara-senpai would take the purple-haired demon who'd just managed to steal her first kiss and leave-preferably for good, while the other half wished for- what exactly? She kicked herself mentally, wincing a little as she spoke. "You're right, Hihara-senpai, I should- I mean you should, er, go ahead," she mumbled, still aware of Azuma's golden eyes trained on her face.
"Yunoki?" the flutist turned to face his friend.
"I guess I'll come." He smiled at Hihara. "Goodbye, Hino-san." But he said her name with the look of his black side in his eyes, and she shivered slightly, wondering what was in store for her.
Kahoko waved weakly at the third-years as they walked away, before sitting down with a thump on the ground. What have I just done?
AUTHOR'S NOTE: Please, please tell me what you think! Just click the green button right under this that says 'Review'(You don't even need an account to review), and fire away. All feedback is welcome, and will be an invaluable help while I write future fics, or even in revising this one if that's what it needs.