You know writing block?

Well, it sucks.

Luckily, however, I found this buried in my 'fanfictions' folder and with a little editing, it turned out presentable. Lucky, lucky me. Now if only it could work miracles and get me more inspired to keep working on 'Rhapsody'... D:

Enjoy this, plz.

xxx

"So."

Nami Amou slapped her hands down on the floor in front of her, her grin positively feral, and every soul in the room fell silent, looking nervously at one another. Kahoko Hino shifted her weight uncomfortably, barely managing to not faint at the sight of the solitary Coca-Cola bottle lying in the middle of the circle of people she was part of; beside her, Len Tsukimori sighed impatiently and folded his arms. Kahoko tried--and failed--not to shiver.

"I wonder," Amou continued, her grin growing, if possible, even wider as she surveyed the group of people sitting in a circle with her--the concours participants, herself, and Kahoko's friends, Mio and Nao-- "if any of you have figured out why we're here."

"Could you enlighten us, Amou-san?" Azuma Yunoki asked politely, and Kahoko shivered again. Out of the corner of her eye, she caught his smirk--only for the tiniest second, but it was there--and shrank into Tsukimori's side without thinking. He raised his eyebrows coldly and, flushing violently now, Kahoko jerked away. Amou looked viciously pleased and answered.

"Of course, Yunoki-senpai." She straightened, paused for dramatic effect--it's working, Kahoko reflected bitterly to herself--and announced, "Who here does not know how to play Spin the Bottle?"

Many things seemed to happen at once.

Ryoutarou Tsuchiura burst into laughter that seemed to border on hysterics; Yunoki smiled pleasantly; Kazuki Hirara's eyes flicked to Kahoko and his face went beet red; Shoko Fuyuumi gasped and buried her face in her hands; Mio and Nao burst into a fit of giggles; Keiichi Shimizu blinked slowly at Amou as though just registering what he was being told to do; Kahoko moaned and studied the floor so as to hide her blush from the ice cube beside her; and Tsuskimori raised his hand calmly.

Everyone stared.

"Wait, you're serious?" Amou asked him incredulously after a short pause, and Tsukimori raised an eyebrow. "You've never played Spin the Bottle?"

Tsukimori twitched in irritation, as though trying to displace a fly. "I play music," he said quietly and flatly, "not games. I wouldn't have come if I'd known I would just be wasting my time spinning bottles." He made to stand up, but Amou was remarkably fast--she pounced and pinned him down in a flash, so that he was still seated where he had been a moment before. His normally cold topaz orbs went wide.

"You're not going anywhere," Amou growled in a death whisper, and Tsukimori actually looked alarmed; he nodded jerkily and she moved back to her original seat, apparently pleased with herself. "Now," she continued, businesslike while Tsukimori struggled to sit up again, the tiniest hint of color in his face--Kahoko's stomach fluttered and she averted her eyes-- "would anyone care to explain the rules to Tsukimori-kun?"

No one spoke; instead, all faces went red.

"Why are you doing this, anyway?" Hihara demanded, trying not to look Kahoko's way. "Why--?"

"Because, my dear sir," Amou sighed dramatically, "I need stories."

There was a collective groan; Kahoko vaguely heard a muttered "shit" from Tsuchiura's general person and silently agreed with him.

"The way you play," Amou began, turning towards Tsukimori with her hands on her hips and a blazing, determined look on her face, "is simple: spin the bottle, and kiss whoever it lands on."

Tsukimori's eyes went wide, and it would have been comical if it hadn't been so pathetic--his jaw went slack and his cheeks flushed, the first real emotion Kahoko had ever seen on his face.

Amou just smirked. "You'll learn to like it, Tsukimori-kun." She straightened and tossed her light brown hair over one shoulder. "Who first?" No one spoke; the edgy excitement in the room was almost tangible. "Then," she grinned, gripping the bottle with her hand, "I guess it's all up to me."

Her grin faltered for a moment, and with a flick of her wrist, the bottle was sent spinning. Every eye followed as it slowed down and--

"Hihara-senpai?!" she whimpered, and the senpai in question gasped and grew an even darker shade of scarlet. There was a short pause, until finally--Amou stood, walked his way, and kissed him lightly. Hihara froze. She turned pink, muttered, "There you go", and strode with forced pride to her original spot, pushing the bottle towards Yunoki, who took it with an unreadable smile on his face.

"Here I go," he said softly, then let the bottle go with a spin.

Nao.

Mio fell to the floor with suppressed mirth, Nao blushed, and Yunoki smiled in a way that should have been kind but looked more smug before leaning down beside her and pressing his lips surprisingly fiercely against hers. Her eyes widened, then flitted shut, and beside Kahoko, Tsukimori muttered, "Idiot."

Kahoko turned to face him, eyes wide. "What do you--?"

But Nao and Yunoki had broken apart by now, Nao looking out of breath and Yunoki looking faintly pleased. Kahoko felt slightly nauseous remembering the last time she'd seen that smirk-- "You're annoying..."

Then, without warning, Nao passed the bottle to her.

Kahoko froze, staring at the seemingly innocent Coke bottle as though willing it to disintegrate on the spot, then gulped, reached out tentatively, and spun.

After a moment--

Tsukimori.

Because fate always had seemed to hate her guts.

She gulped, then whirled to face the boy in question. His eyes had expanded almost to the size of small saucers, and his lips were parted slightly, and all at once Kahoko couldn't think of anything else, just those lips, that face, that hair--

She flushed. Wha...what the hell am I doing?

A few more moments of silence, the two simply staring bemusedly at one another, and there seemed to be an outbreak of polite coughs; somewhere on Kahoko's other side, a voice that sounded suspiciously like Amou's muttered, "Get a move on!" Kahoko watched as though disembodied as her hand reached out toward the back of his head, pulled him in, and her lips met his.

It felt as though something within her chest had exploded and sparked every nerve to her fingertips--he was surprisingly warm, and she sighed softly as the boy slowly melted into the kiss. Their eyes fluttered closed, and Tsukimori rested his hands on the sides of her face, smiling ever so slightly against her lips, and her mind went blissfully blank--

"Wow."

Yunoki. Tsukimori's eyes flew open and he jerked away as though shocked; Kahoko gasped at the sudden loss of balance and fell to the ground on her face. Someone helped her up--Nao, her face scrunched up as though not knowing whether to look sympathetic or laugh out loud--and Kahoko brushed herself off, mortified, staring down at the carpet underneath her and trying not to look up and show anyone the blush creeping over her face, redder now than her hair.

"That was inappropriate," Tsukimori murmured quickly, his voice slightly hoarse, the words tumbling over each other in their haste to get out. "I'm sorry."

Someone cleared their throat uncomfortably and the bottle was passed. Kahoko continued to stare downwards, still appalled, for three turns--until she couldn't bear it any longer and looked up.

Shimizu and Fuyuumi were sharing a soft, tentative-looking kiss, but no one seemed to be watching--all eyes seemed to be on her, or Tsukimori, or both. Hihara looked heartbroken; Tsuchiura looked livid; even Yunoki looked slightly ruffled.

Amou, predictably, was clutching her camera, wide-eyed and looking amazed she'd gotten such a shot. She caught Kahoko's eye, gave her a thumbs up, and mouthed silently, "That was so hot!"

Kahoko flushed, if possible, an even darker scarlet, and looked down again.

After a moment, however, her gaze flicked to the boy with the sky-blue hair.

He was determinedly looking away from her, she could tell--but she could also tell that his face was flushed a delicate pink, his usually flawless hair rumpled, and even his neckerchief was askew--she'd have to point that out to him later.

If she could bring herself to say even two words to him later.

Which she doubted.

.

It was when she was hurting like this that she went on the roof.

And it had hurt--too much--when he'd walked briskly out of the room at his turn with the bottle, not saying a word, not even looking her way. Kahoko stared up at the sky, the exact shade of cerulean as his hair, and sighed wistfully. If they'd been alone...

She smacked her forehead with her palm. He was just playing the game, she thought fiercely to herself. It had nothing to do with you, or him, or either of your feelings--he was playing the game. And so were you.

She clutched her writhing stomach with both hands and sighed, bowing her head. But why did it feel so right?

Shaking her head as though clearing her ears of water, she bent down, clicked open the violin case, and pulled out the only thing that could possibly help now.

.

From behind the wall, Len Tsukimori watched her play, listened intently, the strangest feeling still swelling within his chest, even stronger than it had been before, in the practice room. Not hope, exactly, but something akin to it--something he'd never actually felt before, except sometimes, when he was playing violin or listening to his parents play duets.

Love, perhaps--the moment the word entered his thoughts his stomach fluttered helplessly as though to confirm it--but it was so cliché.

And Tsukimori Len hated clichés.

He shook his head, exhausted, and let out an angry huff of breath--and Kahoko's playing stopped, immediately. He froze, cursing inwardly.

"Tsu...Tsukimori-kun?" she whispered tentatively into the light breeze, and he sighed again before stepping into her view.

"I wanted to request your forgiveness," he said stiffly, before mentally smacking himself upside the head--what the hell kind of statement was that, you idiot, you're not a freaking Jane Austenhero!--and quickly added, "I mean, I--I'm sorry."

"I gathered that," she said faintly, but made no move towards him--very smooth, Darcy, you're driving her away--and he gulped, finding himself once again caught in her eyes.

Her eyes...were utterly fascinating. While his were cold and unfeeling (and he knew--how many times had he been told by his own mother to get a heart?) hers were soft, warm, knowing--molten amber. Or something.

Len hated metaphors, too.

Really, he thought vaguely as he struggled to find words to say to her, her entire person is fascinating. She is so strong-willed yet blushes so easily--she has so many admirers yet hardly ever thinks of herself--she knows she cannot play the violin as well as she used to yet still, out of love for music, she tries...

Yes, this was perhaps the hardest for the prodigy to wrap his mind around.

"Is...everything alright, Tsukimori-kun?"

Could she see the battle raging in his head?

He snapped back into reality with an "urg" that must have been so attractive for the object of his attraction--if there is a God, show some mercy and smite me into ash on the spot, I beg of you--and said in a rush, "It was inappropriate and thoughtless of me to just walk out the way I did. I hope you'll forgive me."

Yeah, no pressure there, genius, the as-of-now unusually talkative voice in the back of his head snapped, and Len bit his lip to keep him from shouting at it and frightening Kahoko with possible signs of schizophrenia. Kahoko considered him shyly.

"I--I forgive you, Tsukimori-kun." She timidly walked a few steps toward him, smiling a bit more like the real Kahoko now. Len's stomach nearly flipped over.

"I hope," he said quietly, his voice intense and trembling slightly--was he going insane?-- "you'll forgive me for any other impulsive things I do?"

Oh, oh, but he was so close all of a sudden. Too close. Kahoko was frozen to the spot, staring at him, her lips parted in a silent "o", and suddenly, he couldn't take it--couldn't bear it--

He took her face in his hands and kissed her, and the spark between them was enough to make his head spin. She whimpered quietly in the back of her throat before pulling him closer, parting her lips and breathing in his scent, and suddenly he had her pinned against the wall, losing his mind and loving every minute of this shared madness.

They broke apart gasping, and he exhaled in relief, leaning his head on her shoulder as her fingers--those talented, lovely fingers--traced circles on his back...

So you didn't do too badly after all, Heathcliff, the voice in his head said smugly, and Len shot back, That's Brontë, not Austen, fool--

But Katherine and Elizabeth be damned; Kahoko was better for him, anyway.

.

Len is funnnn.

Review, darlings. You know you want to.