This WAS supposed to be pure humor...but it somehow turned a little serious..._...


Title: The Aftermath
Author: ice
Genre: General, Humor
Rating: PG-13
Pairings: AtoJi
Summary: The Hyoutei team has an interesting tradition that they've forgotten about due to their loss to Seigaku at Regionals. So what does Jirou do to cheer them up?


Disclaimer: I can only wish I owned PoT...Atobe and Jirou would be official. Maybe then, DL3 would have involved Kazuki and Takuya being together....*sighs*


The bus ride back to school was silent. Many were contemplating the lost chance of reaching Nationals. Of the three who had won, Shishido was frustrated with the overall loss, Ohtori was worried for his senpai-tachi, and Atobe was frustrated with the fact that Tezuka had not been fully healed when they had played. Atobe felt as if he had been cheated out of a proper match. He knew that Tezuka most likely would have won had his shoulder not acted up. It didn't feel right that he had been announced the winner instead.

In the back of the bus, Hiyoshi sat brooding in a corner, while Mukahi and Oshitari sat a few seats in front of him. Oshitari stared out at the scenery, seemingly emotionless, while Mukahi looked both frustrated and angry at himself for collapsing during the match.

Jirou sat alone in the seat next to the two across the aisle, surprisingly wide-awake for being outside of a tennis match. He looked at the rest of his teammates contemplatively. He didn't quite feel that bad about his loss. He knew Fuji won fairly, and would have won either way with those moves. The only way Jirou would have won was if he had known about Fuji's attacks and had practiced against them, but considering that Fuji rarely ever used those moves, he very much doubted that the tensai would have agreed to practice with him anyways. Besides, even if they didn't get to Nationals this year, they had tried their best, hadn't they? And they could always try again for Nationals in high school.

What he didn't like was the gloomy and tense atmosphere of the bus. Everyone was dissatisfied with the day's game. And while he usually slept through most problems, it was never this tense around him before. Usually, everything would tide over in a day or two when Atobe forced whoever was in conflict to fix their problems. But this time, even Atobe was in a mood. He didn't know what to do to cheer them up, and he doubted that acting cheery in this situation would help matters any.

He sighed. This was hopeless.


--------------

Over the course of the next few days, both class and practice were horrible. Every time Jirou tried to talk to Gakuto, he would be shot down with a scathing remark by the red-head, telling him to go away, while Oshitari didn't even respond. Shishido wasn't much better than Gakuto, but he did have a junior who constantly tried to make him feel better. Jirou figured that asking said junior what to do would only add to Ohtori's stress levels, and so didn't bother him too much, only greeting him with a cheerful smile and receiving a nervous one in return. He didn't see Hiyoshi anywhere, and Kabaji was as silent as ever, following Atobe around.

And Atobe?

Atobe was in a foul mood most of the time; many students knew to avoid him at this time, only speaking to him when absolutely necessary. No, Atobe didn't take his anger and frustration out on any poor, innocent student; he was controlled enough to deal with situations that required his attention and do his duties. No, many respected him enough that they knew when he needed space.

As for Jirou himself, apparently, he seemed the most approachable out of all the regulars because he was constantly receiving comments and support from his fellow classmates and then some. They kept telling him that they didn't think any less of the tennis team due to the loss, that they put up a valiant fight. He could only smile weakly in return.

There were a few who looked smug at the loss though. They thought that the tennis team had gotten too much leeway in terms of work and school. That, and they thought Atobe was too pig-headed and hated the range of his influence. Jirou supposed that Atobe was a little pig-headed at times, but they didn't have to look that smug. He frowned. Hopefully they hadn't been adding to Atobe's bad mood by egging him on. That would make things more difficult.

But by the end of the week, Jirou finally broke and went to Seigaku as soon as classes let out to see if Fuji-kun would help him. Fuji was a tensai, right? He should know more about these kinds of situations than Jirou.

He skipped practice. It didn't matter anyways because it was the last practice for the third years anyways, and everyone would probably just assume that he was asleep somewhere.

As he entered the gates of Seigaku Gakuen, people began staring at him, at which he realized that he probably should have changed out of his uniform first before going. Well, it was too late now, so he kept walking, albeit a little more quickly now with his head ducked slightly in hopes no one would recognize him, heading towards where he could hear tennis balls being hit.

When he reached the courts, he could see that the courts were all occupied, spying one or two regulars playing against the regular members, but none of them were Fuji, so he ignored them in favor of continuing his search. He finally spotted Fuji standing next to Tezuka, and stopped. While he knew that Tezuka was not exactly unreasonable nor mean, he didn't know how the captain would react if one of his rival schools' students took one of his players out of practice.

He was still debating what to do when a deep voice spoke up behind him and asked him what he was doing there.

"Gah!!" He jumped in shock. His shout had garnered some attention, but not all. He turned around to see Seigaku's data specialist standing behind him. Inui Sadaharu.

"Well? Not here to gather information on us, are you?" Inui sounded almost menacing as his glasses gleamed.

"Ack! Er, no, I'm not. I, uhm, er..." Jirou fumbled for words.

"Yes?"

"Is there a problem here?" Tezuka's voice sounded behind him, causing him to jump in shock again.

"Gah!" He turned around to see Tezuka and Fuji standing behind him. "Er...no, there's no problem. I just, uhm....can I borrow Fuji-kun for a while please?" He blurted out.

Tezuka raised an eyebrow as Inui scribbled furiously in a notebook. Fuji opened his eyes slightly before agreeing. Jirou sighed in relief. "Thanks."

"Would you like to go somewhere more private?" Fuji offered.

"Yes, please."

Fuji led him to the clubhouse as Tezuka told their audience to get back to practice.

As soon as the door to the clubhouse closed, Jirou said, "I need your help."

Fuji raised an eyebrow, staring contemplatively. "Go on."

Jirou took a deep breath before continuing. "My team's been in a bad mood since the match this weekend. They're either frustrated with themselves or mad at the world in general. Well, Ohtori-kun is more worried about everyone than anything else, but the entire school's been walking on eggshells around us. None of them will talk to me unless they have to, and they haven't talked to either. I've tried to get them to talk, but it's not working."

"And you want me to give you advice for this?" Fuji questioned. "Why me?"

Jirou flushed. "Well, I figured that since you're a tensai, you would most likely be able to come up with a solution, and you seemed like the type who would know about this kind of stuff..."

"I see..." Fuji remained quiet for a while, before responding. "And how are these problems usually solved?"

"Atobe usually makes whoever's arguing make up or threaten to suspend them."

"Aa...well, the way I see it, Atobe's also brooding, is he not?"

"Well, yeah..."

"So if the main problem-solver's also become a problem, what should you do..."

"...yeah...he's feeling a little frustrated that Tezuka kept playing with that shoulder of his...that, and the fact that he didn't want to win like that."

"I see...what does your team usually do when you win then?"

Jirou blinked. "Well...we go out to celebrate sometimes...and sometimes we just all go to Atobe's place and celebrate there...."

"And what do you do to celebrate?"

Jirou shrugged. "Play a few games I suppose. And do whatever bet or dare each person was given before....the....game......" He blinked. "I completely forgot about those." He laughed a little. "We made them to have a little fun before and after the games each time. Although..." He frowned.

"Yes?"

"Well..." Jirou flushed. "They told me that I had to dress as a girl if I lost my match this time."

Fuji chuckled. "Aa..." He looked Jirou over contemplatively. "Hmm...I think it'll work." He muttered.

"What will work?" Jirou asked, confused.

"Well, why don't you remind them that they each still have a dare or bet to do?" Fuji grinned.

"EHH???"

"What did the others have to do?"

Jirou blinked. "Um...Oshitari and Mukahi had to kiss each other if they lost, Hiyoshi had to let Taki-san do his nails, Atobe had to confess to the person he likes, whoever that is, and ask them out, Kabaji has to say at least something else every time he says 'usu,' and...er....I don't really remember what Ohtori and Shishido had to do...."

Fuji had to raise his eyebrow at the 'do his nails' part and when he heard that Atobe had to confess to a crush. He smirked. This was going to be fun. If he had read Atobe accurately enough and from what Jirou was telling him, he could almost guess that Atobe would do his punishment like the rest of the team members who lost. "Saa, so how about reminding them that they still have to do their parts?"

"I guess...but how?"

Fuji smirked. "Wait a minute." He went to get his phone and dialed a number. "Ah, Nee-san? Yes....yes...mmhmm...see you in a little while then."

Then he turned to Jirou as he grabbed his bag. "Let's go."

"Eh?" Jirou barely managed to let out a squeak before Fuji grabbed his arm and dragged him out of the clubhouse and out of the school, shouting a 'bye, Tezuka~!' in the direction of the tennis courts and leaving before anyone could get a word in otherwise.

Jirou looked back at the school they were leaving. "Are you sure you can just leave practice like that?"

"You're skipping practice, too, aren't you?"

"Well, yeah, but they probably wouldn't even notice that I was actually gone."

Fuji shrugged. "Tezuka can deal with it."

----------------------------------------------------

Soon, they arrived at a nice-looking condo. It looked a little similar to his own house.

"Nee-san~!" Fuji called as soon as they entered the house.

"I'm upstairs, Syuusuke~!"

Fuji continued dragging him upstairs and into a room where a young woman was sitting.

"So? What do you think?" Fuji addressed his sister.

"Hmmm..." The woman stood up and circled Jirou twice before saying, "Perfect! We can definitely do it." She grinned at a beaming Fuji.

"Ano..." Jirou still didn't understand what was going on.

"Saa, Jirou-kun, can you show up about three hours before school starts tomorrow? Or better yet, just stay here tonight. We'll have more time that way."

"Huh? Wait, why?"

"You're going to go to school in your dare."

".....EHHHHHH?!?!??!!"

---------------------------------------------------

Jirou didn't know how they had managed to convince him that it would be a good idea to go to school while doing his dare to show his teammates. He supposed that it would remind them of all the other times they had won and lost, of the bond they had as a team, but this was embarrassing! They refuted him by saying that since it was Saturday, he'd only be there for half a day, and there was no morning practice either.

They had woken him up at FOUR in the morning to get him ready. Then it was a flurry of clothes and hair and powder. They had somehow managed to produce a Hyoutei uniform...for females. They stuffed him into the outfit along with a padded bra and cooed over how adorable he was. Jirou flushed when they commented that his legs were nice since they didn't have to shave them. He didn't know whether to be mortified or not. Then they had straighted his hair out slightly into waves so that it wasn't as curly and looked a little longer before putting make up on his face, all the while commenting that it's nice that they didn't have to do too much to make him look cute.

And Jirou? Jirou sat through the entire thing bewildered, torn between wanting to help his teammates and running for his life.

When they finished with him, they pulled him in front of a full body mirror. Amazingly, he didn't look as bad as he thought he would have. In fact, he didn't look bad at all, rather, he looked cute. He looked like one of those school girls in those magazines his little sister read sometimes. He was both horrified at that fact and pleased that he didn't look bad. Fuji-kun and Yumiko-san both said as much when he unknowingly commented out loud.

"If you ever need help, just ask again, although, after all those tips, I think you'll be fine." Yumiko winked. And indeed, as she had been putting the make up on his face, she had also explained how to do each step. Jirou didn't understand why she did that and had just nodded whenever she said something, not wanting to argue.

"Here." A box was shoved at him when Fuji finished packing everything up.

Jirou blinked. "What's this for?"

"It's yours. You can keep it." Yumiko replied.

Jirou began to protest. "But, it's yours, I won't be-"

"You may need it in the future." Yumiko said knowingly.

"Don't argue." Fuji advised.

Jirou looked helplessly between the two of them and relented, accepting the gift. It didn't seem like he'd be getting out of refusing it any time soon anyways. "Alright."

"Hmm...since it's only six in the morning, why don't I drop both of you off at school? I don't have to get to work until eight." Yumiko suggested.

"Okay."

"Thank you."

They piled into her red sports car and dropped Fuji off at school first. As they left, Fuji wished Jirou luck before turning to walk into the school. It was still relatively early, so when Yumiko and Jirou arrived at Hyoutei, only perhaps half the school was present, luckily for Jirou, who wanted to avoid any attention if at all possible.

As Yumiko's car dropped him off at the front entrance of the school though, he realized that his efforts had been in vain. The red convertible had attracted much attention. While the majority of Hyoutei were all from well-off families, not many of them would choose a sports car, much less a red one, as their choice of vehicle. Yumiko then wished him luck with a smile before driving off.

He flushed when he stepped out and heard people begin to gossip. As he walked through the grounds to reach the building, however, he soon realized that the students didn't recognize him, which made him feel a little better. Now he didn't have to deal with anyone finding out too soon, and since school ended at lunch today, seeing as it was a Saturday, he could run home before anyone could question him about what he was wearing. Now, he just had to find the regulars before classes started. He did NOT want to stay afterschool to find them.

He quickly found his locker and stuffed the makeup kit into it. Then he headed down the hallway trying to figure out where exactly his teammates would be this early in the morning. In his musing, however, he did not pay attention to where he was walking, and so, ran into a couple of third years.

The same third years who had been happy at their loss, Jirou realized.

Shit.

Jirou quickly picked himself up from the ground and tried to run off, but a hand caught his arm. He looked up to see that one of the third years--Mishima, Jirou identified--had grabbed him. The other boy narrowed his eyes at him. "I haven't seen you around before. What are you doing here? We don't get transfer students at this time of the year."

"I-" Jirou squeaked. Crap. He'd been caught. "I-"

Mishima smirked. He could work with this. This girl was quite pretty in any case. "Why don't you hang around with us? We'll make sure you don't get caught."

Jirou froze in terror. He had to go find his teammates. He did NOT want to hang around with this...this....bully. And screw getting caught, it wasn't like they could do anything other than suspend him anyways. Besides, getting his friends together again was more important. Jirou narrowed his eyes and wrenched his arm away from the other boy. "No, thank you."

He managed to walk past only one classroom before being pulled back again.

"Did I say you could go?" Mishima sneered.

Jirou glared. "Why should I need your permission?"

"For-"

"Is this how respectful students of Hyoutei should be acting?" Jirou had never felt more relief when he heard Atobe's voice ring out. "It seems you are harassing her. Let her go."

Mishima straightened up and glared as Atobe approached, but did not let go of Jirou's arm even as he continued to struggle. "I was merely disciplining an outsider."

Atobe stopped in front of them, glanced over at Jirou still struggling to free himself, and snatched Mishima's wrist and twisted. "That is still no way to treat a guest. Apologize."

Mishima cried out in pain as Atobe's strong grip practically broke his wrist. "You want me to apologize to someone who could possibly be from another school and sent here to spy on us?" He gasped out in pain.

"This person is a student of Hyoutei." Atobe stated almost conversationally as his grip held. Jirou moved away from Mishima, having been released the moment Atobe snatched the other's arm. He looked up at this statement though. He had a sneaking suspicion that Atobe recognized him.

"Alright! FINE!" Mishima scowled as he was released. "Sorry." He practically growled at Jirou before leaving.

The two silently stared at the back of the boy angrily stomping away from them. Then Atobe turned and said, "Let's go."

"Hai."

"....."

"....."

"So why are you dressed as a girl?"

Jirou choked. Crap. Atobe did recognize him. "I, er....decided that I might as well go through with that bet I agreed to before the game last week. I wanted to cheer everyone up..." He mumbled out as he stared at the ground, still following Atobe to class.

Atobe remained silent the rest of the way there. As they entered the classroom, he quickly spoke to the teacher before going to his seat. The students who had silenced the moment Atobe had entered and avoided eye-contact with him began talking in nervous whispers again. Jirou stared at Atobe for a moment before moving to his own seat.

"Ah...Akutagawa-san?" The teacher called. Jirou flinched as he was called. A few people looked up, confused at why the teacher was calling for someone who wasn't even there yet. They were even more confused when what seemed like a girl responded to the call. "Atobe-san told me that your cousin was out sick and that you had graciously offered to attend class for him. Thank you. If you have any trouble with anything, please ask."

Jirou blinked. That hadn't been in the plan. "Ah...okay."

"Please take the seat over there." The teacher pointed to Jirou's seat by the window.

Oh well. He wasn't going to take such luck for granted. "Hai." He bowed and headed towards his seat before the bell rang.

"I wasn't aware that the Akutagawa family had a female cousin who looked so similar to Jirou." Jirou froze as Oshitari's voice sounded in a whisper behind him. He turned slightly to see the blue-haired boy leaning close and staring at him.

"Er...it's me."

Oshitari sat back, satisfied. "I see I was correct. The bet?"

Jirou scowled. "You and Gakuto were the ones who came up with that idea, you know. This is all your fault." He hissed.

Oshitari smirked. "But you look so cute as a girl."

Jirou scowled. "I'm just glad people don't really recognize me."

Oshitari only chuckled.

---------------------------------------------------------

Jirou sighed as school let out. Now he had to stay afterschool. He groaned. At least they wouldn't think that he was Jirou crossdressing.

What he hadn't expected was to be surrounded the moment the teacher left the room.

"Omg, you're so cute!"

"Want to go shopping together? I'd love to know how you did your make up!"

"Want to be friends?"

And the occasional, "Please go out with me!" from the few males in the classroom that managed to be heard.

Jirou didn't think that dressing as a girl would cause this many problems, but apparently, it did. "Um...I need to go now..." He said and he struggled through the group. Oshitari had long left the room. Damn him.

When he got through the crowd, he saw that Shishido and Atobe also already left. He groaned. Now he really had to go look for everyone. Great.

He spent the next hour wandering around the school, trying to find his friends, but saw neither hide nor hair of any. "Argh! Where ARE they?!" He kicked the ground in frustration and pouted.

"Ano...Akutagawa-san?"

Jirou turned to see a petite girl with short brown hair staring at him. "Yeah?"

"Atobe-sama told me to tell you to come to the clubhouse."

Jirou blinked. Now why hadn't he checked there? "Thanks!" He shouted as he dashed away.

The girl stood there for a few seconds, blinking curiously, before commenting, "She acts a lot like Jirou-senpai. I guess it runs in the family."

------------------------------------------------------------

He didn't know what he had expected at the clubhouse, but certainly, it was nothing like what he was seeing. The team was back together again, acting as if the past week hadn't happened. Except, Hiyoshi now had pink nail polish on his nails. Jirou's eyes lit up.

"Is..."

"Yeah, everyone's back together again." Mukahi said off-handedly. Then he turned and kissed Oshitari on the mouth, completing his part of the bet.

"Sorry for making you worry, Jirou-senpai." Ohtori said apologetically.

"Ch'. How lame. You had to dress up as a girl just to get us to come to our senses." Shishido snorted.

"Shishido-san!"

"Sorry."

Jirou beamed.

"I hate nail polish." Came the scowl from the other second year.

"Deal with it. You agreed to the bet, naa, Kabaji?"

"Usu. He did."

Everyone had to stare at this one, having never heard Kabaji say anything other than 'usu.'

"Wow."

"He actually did it."

"Well of course he did. He's not exactly dumb, you know." Atobe said loftily.

Mukahi gave hima flat stare. "You speak enough for him anyways." He said as Atobe glared at him.

Jirou grinned. "Sugee! Sugee!! Everyone's happy again!" He bounced up and down happily.

"Er...Jirou, maybe you should stop that." Shishido sounded slightly uncertain.

"Yeah, your skirt's starting to flip a little." Mukahi commented.

"Eh?" Jirou looked down in mid-bounce. "Oh." He blushed as he straightened out the skirt. "So what're we doing now?"

"Ore-sama has yet to complete his part of the bet." Atobe said airily.

Mukahi snickered. "Yeah, get on with it."

Ohtori looked uncertain. "Atobe-san, you don't have to. You did win your match afterall."

"Choutarou, let him do it. It'll be funny."

"But-"

"Just let him."

"But what if the girl's already left?" Jirou asked curiously. "Wouldn't we have to chase her down then?"

Atobe looked exasperated as Oshitari started snorting through his chuckles.

Muhaki laughed. "'She' hasn't left yet, that's for sure."

"Really?" Jirou looked a little disappointed before bouncing back, deciding that Atobe's happiness was what mattered. "Then let's go find her!"

Atobe gave an exasperated sigh as the rest of the team tried to stifle their laughter. "Jirou." He addressed the blond before walking up to him.

"Hmm?" Jirou blinked up at his captain curiously.

"I like you." He said before immediately pressing his lips against Jirou's. Jirou's eyes widened as he froze in shock. After a while, sensing that Jirou was not responding, Atobe slowly backed off.

Jirou pressed his fingers against his slightly swollen lips. "I-you-me-wha-" He shook his head. "Really?" His eyes sparkled in happiness. Atobe only raised his eyebrow. "SUGEE~!!" He jumped up and down in glee, unmindful of the state of his skirt.

"JIROU!! Stop that! And you are forbidden from wearing anything like that ever again unless I specifically say you can! Ore-sama is NOT going to let any mere peasant lay their eyes on you!" Atobe fumed as Jirou's skirt flipped up a little more, slightly revealing what he was wearing underneath.

"Whoa! Is he wearing a thong?" Mukahi's voice echoed.

"MUKAHI! ORE-SAMA DEMANDS EVERYONE OUT! OUT!!" Then Atobe grabbed Jirou around the waist and pulled him up against his body. "And stop that jumping until you have something else on!"

"Hai~! Kei-chan!"

A stunned silence followed before it was broken by chortles of laughter.

"Hahahaha!!! Hear that Atobe?" Shishido laughed at his captain.

"Kei-chan~ Kei-chan~!" Mukahi mocked.

"NO! Only I can call him Kei-chan!" Jirou hissed before pouting cutely.

Atobe could only sigh in exasperation at his team.


A/N: Jet Drive is extremely addicting...=.=...stupid catchy beat...*pout*


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