A/N: SUCESS!!!! I, the huge sokai fan that I am, have ACTUALLY MANAGED TO WRITE A KAIKU THAT DOESN'T EVEN HINT AT SOKAI! Don't get me wrong, sokai is still my OTP, but I have always wanted to write and honest-to-goodness, affection-reciprocated, two-way, RikuXKairi fic for the simple reason that I'm not actually fond of the pairing. It's a good exercise as a writer to write what you don't like. AND I FINALLY FOUND AN IDEA THAT WORKS!

Kaiku, post KH2. oneshot.



"You're pulling too hard on my hair!"

"Oh, shut up, you big baby."

Riku steams as Kairi pushes his head forward a little more so that she can more effectively trim the hair sprouting from the base of his skull. He gets that she has to pull his hair straight if she wants to make sure she cuts an even line, but does that really mean she has to yank it so hard?

He listens to the rhythmic snip snip of Kairi's scissors and feels a few stray clippings of hair slip past the sheet she has draped around his neck and down the back of his shirt and Riku fidgets as the loose hair tickles his back.

"Riku!" There's a layer of hair covering his eyes, so Riku can't see her, but he hears Kairi's huff of frustration and imagines the aggravated look she is giving the back of his head. "How many times do I have to tell you to sit still? Do you want me to cut your ear off?"

Riku groans for the umpteenth time since the grooming session started and glares at the curtain of hair that has been combed in front of his face. "But hair's getting down the back of my shirt and it itches!" He can actually hear the eye-rolling that accompanies Kairi's sigh.

"Riku, my goodness, it's not that big of a deal. You had the prince of darkness co-inhabiting your body for like a year. You can handle a few stray hairs until I finish."

He momentarily considers making a snarky remark about how long it is taking her to finish, but knowing Kairi, she might actually stop and force him to go on with his hair in all its current lopsided glory. Even though it was her idea to cut his hair to begin with.

"So why did you want to do this so badly, anyway?" He asks, trying to mask his misery.

"I told you, it's too long. You've got longer hair than me, and I'm a girl. In fact, you've probably got more hair than Sora and I put together."

Riku grunts. "And what's wrong with that?"

She doesn't answer immediately, and after a few moments Riku starts to wonder if she actually heard him. "Kairi?"

Did he imagine she hesitated in her movements? "It's too long." She replies simply, and resumes cutting. "You know Riku, if you're really this opposed to getting your hair cut, then why are you letting me do this?"

"I dunno." This is a lie. The truth is that Kairi has been telling him for a week that his hair is too long, and when she finally asked him if he would let her cut it, she did it with that face, and even though he really didn't want to change the length of his hair, there was just no saying no to Kairi when she gave him that face.

He feels Kairi move his head back to his normal eye level and comb the hair that had been resting in front of his face back to where it belongs. She then swivels the office chair they'd commandeered around so that he's facing her. Riku blushes as she moves in closer to cut his bangs.

It is undeniably, unavoidably awkward. She is so close that it is hard to look anywhere but her face; and she's so pretty that it is difficult to look anywhere but her face under normal circumstances. Riku's imagined a thousand different scenarios in which his face would be this close to hers, but none of them are compatible with the current situation.

And there is no sense, after all, in distracting a woman who is holding sharp scissors so very close to your head.

Her eyes are occupied with making sure she cuts his bangs straight, but Riku is finding it exceedingly difficult not to stare into those pools of blue, so he decides to train his eyes on one of the peachy-colored flowers decorating the wallpaper of his mother's bathroom.

His peripheral vision still catches the satisfied smile that comes over Kairi's face as she clips one last strand of his bangs and moves back to admire her handiwork. "There," she announces, looking rather chuffed with herself, "much better." Riku rolls his eyes, still not liking the feeling of less weight hanging from his head. "Now," she continues, businesslike, "Does your hair dry that straight and shiny and perfect naturally, or do you have to blow dry it or straighten it or something?"

Riku shrugs. "It does pretty well if I just let it dry on its own, but it does best to blow dry it."

Kairi just looks at him for a moment. "My god, that is so gay."

Riku momentarily considers telling her just how happy he would be to show her quite definitively how very not-gay he is, but any semblance of a relationship with Kairi is so very far from his reach and yet so desperately desired that he knows he can't even joke about something like that with her.

Nevertheless, Kairi digs out the blow-dryer and proceeds to dry his hair. Riku's back is still to the mirror, so he isn't really certain how much of his mane Kairi has rid him of yet, but it feels too light, so he's already decided that he hates it, and that he must love this girl a whole ton if he's actually let her do this to him.

Finally, the agonizing shearing process is complete and Kairi swivels him back around to see the final results in the mirror.

"It's too short." Kairi huffs and rolls her eyes again, and Riku almost feels a bit guilty. It isn't so bad, really, he thinks. She's left it just slightly above his shoulders, and trimmed his bangs just enough that he can actually see again, but not so much that he has to sacrifice his "angsty, emo-boy, I've-whooped-darkness's-butt" look (as Kairi had so affectionately called it). Overall, he doesn't mind it, although he does miss the longer length. "It's not so bad." He says finally, deciding that he doesn't want to hurt Kairi's feelings. She perks up a bit at this, but Riku still can't help but point out, "I liked it longer, though."

Kairi sighs, her gaze fixed just to the left of his eyes. "Well, if you are going to grow it out the first thing you need is a good trim. You hadn't had it cut in a year. I just cut off five inches of dead ends."

Riku shrugs and stands up, unwrapping the sheet from around his neck. His eyes suddenly narrow as a previously-unnoticed curiosity finally piques his perception. "How come you've changed your answer every time I've asked you why you wanted to cut my hair?"

Kairi draws her eyebrows together. "I haven't changed my answer every time you've asked!"

Riku raises one of his own eyebrows and crosses his arms. "Then why were you so keen to give my hair a trim?"

"Because it's too long."

"But you said if I wanted to grow it long I needed to have it trimmed first."

Kairi pauses for a second, as if carefully considering her next statement. "Well, it's too long, and it's way too fried for its length, so if you were going to have it that long and have it actually look good, you need to get it cut."

Riku just raises his eyebrows at her again. "Kairi, really, why did you want to cut my hair so bad?"

Kairi sighs, then raises herself up on her tip-toes, and to Riku's surprise, presses her lips gently against his. She remains there of her own accord for a mere moment, but the jolt of her lips leaving his is enough to spur in Riku the reflex to stop her, and his hands are cupping her face and bringing it back to his before his brain is even aware of what he's doing.

The next time she breaks away, he lets her, reminding himself that he does, after all, have a good foot and a half on her, and that he can't expect her to stay on her tip-toes forever. But then again, she is a ballerina, so maybe—

He reaches for her again, but he's too late. She's already returned her heels to the ground and opened her eyes to shyly stare into his.

For quite possibly the first time in his life, Riku has no words.

Kairi smirks. "Because, girly boy, I wanted to be able to kiss you in public without looking like a lesbian."

Riku's eyes narrow again, and he opens his mouth to protest, but then Kairi is on her toes again, and his mouth finds itself otherwise preoccupied.

Riku decides he really doesn't care why Kairi cut his hair, because if he's getting this kiss out of the deal, then those five inches of hair he just lost was totally worth it.



Disclaimer: No. But I am holding a sokai contest on the off chance that anyone reading THIS fic is also a sokai fan.