Disclaimer: I own nothing that belongs to Tachibana Higuchi.
Dedication: IndigoGrapefruit [because she REALLY wanted this and I've never been good at refusing.]
Prompts: "It's proven!" –Tsubasa, "Proven by a bias." –Misaki, Koko makes a cameo, RomanceHumor.
Because they were best friends and that was enough.
"I am this close to kicking you where the sun don't shine, Andou."
Tsubasa looked up from his lunch at one of the picnic tables in Central Town, only to find Misaki Harada, hands on hips and expression of utmost fury on her face. Her jaw clenched before she snapped, "Well? What the heck do you have to say for yourself?"
"It wasn't me?"
He dodged the one fist aimed at his neck but forgot about her Alice. The other three punches aimed at his gut, head and shoulder threw him off his seat and onto his butt. He groaned and rubbed his head. "Okay, what did I do? I swear I keep from doing anything that will get you pissed off to avoid this kind of thing."
Misaki's lips twitched, half triumphant, half stern.
The expression scared the shit out of him.
Tsubasa had known Misaki since he came to the Academy. Apparently, she'd arrived a year and a half earlier than he had. He remembered the first time they met, he'd said something to piss her off and the next second, she had five clones surrounding him.
He had never been so scared in his life.
They'd grown up together, walked from the innocence of the Elementary school branch to the sprint to the mysteries of Middle school. In one year, they'd be well on their way to High school and Tsubasa wondered, with all of the crap that went on in the Academy this year, what other surprises it'd have in store.
"—and I can tell by the stupid look on your face that you're not even listening, are you?"
Tsubasa blinked and leapt from the ground to avoid the kick aimed meticulously at his family jewels. "Hey, watch it!"
"I warned you, Andou!"
Tsubasa threw his hands up and surrendered sheepishly. "Okay, okay! I'm listening, I'm listening!"
Misaki narrowed dark, rose pink eyes. Her voice was menacing, "Did you or did you not tell Yamanouchi-senpai that she could, and I quote, "shove the whole Hana Hime invite up her chimney", when she came looking for me the other day."
Oh, Tsubasa remembered that alright. He even had the bruises to prove it. If she didn't have that ass Tono completely wrapped around her finger and her Alice, maybe he would've been able to make it out of the whole situation unscathed. As it was, however, he'd pretty much been beaten to an inch of his life because of the outburst. He wouldn't be able to forget this beating for a while yet.
He looked up carefully to watch for any glimpses of hostility in her eyes. What he saw made him shrink back with a wince. He'd thought about lying to her. Maybe even pull out one of those charming lines Tono told him always worked on the ladies, but one look at pink hair practically crackling with electricity told him he'd get nowhere with an angry Misaki. He tried smiling sheepishly, "Will you take back the glow-in-the-dark panda figurine you gave me if I did?"
Because he loved that figurine, dammit.
Misaki merely blinked, then pursed her lips. "Maybe," she said nonchalantly.
Tsubasa breathed out a sigh.
All of her 'maybe's' meant 'no's' anyway.
Feeling safe, Tsubasa grinned. "Then yes, I did."
Her eyes flashed crimson for a good five seconds before three fists came at him. "I'm going to kill you! What the heck made you crazy enough to say that to your senior, you idiot?! You do know she's the lead princess under Hi-sama, don't you? She could ruin your life!" Misaki called her clones to a pause to put a finger to her lip. She looked nonchalant, but Tsubasa could tell (even from his position on his back and her seat on the picnic table) that Misaki was far from being done with him. "Actually, screw your life. She could ruin mine. What the hell were you thinking!? Even if I disowned you as my best friend today, it would make no difference!"
Usually it was smart to let Misaki beat him until she felt better but yesterday he got the worst beating of his life and going for another round the day after was freakin' painful. Tono used to liken him to a masochist because Misaki was his best friend, but there was definitely no pleasure in this. Misaki made sure of it.
He reached her shadow and soon felt nirvana.
He winced trying to sit up. Then he glared from underneath his midnight bangs. "Would you have even wanted to join the Flower Princess Club anyway?" He scoffed, rubbing the side of his nose. "Geez, Misaki. I know you don't do that kind of thing. I only did it for you."
Tsubasa knew it was the wrong thing to say the moment he saw Misaki's teeth grind.
"Only did it for me, huh?" Misaki's voice was a deathly calm. "The most elite girl's organization in the Academy, who hand chooses who they want out of the hundreds of girls in our school and who have to meet a number of criteria in order to be considered, sent their lead princess to invite me to join them and you scorned her on my behalf because you thought I wouldn't be interested? And what do you mean by, 'I know you don't do that kind of thing'?! Are you kidding me? You'd better hope I'm calm by the time the streetlight above us goes on because when your Alice isn't holding on to me anymore, I am going ape shit on your ass!"
Tsubasa blanched. "Bu-but… it's called the Flower Princess Club for God's sake!"
Misaki's lips thinned. "It is not a club," she sniffed. "It's a gang. The Flower Princess Gang. Hana Hime… Flower Princess—you know what? Shut up! You're not speaking unless I tell you to speak. This is my rant. You can just shut the hell up for another half an hour because I am not done with you!"
"So you did want to join Hana Hime?" Tsubasa's tone was mocking. "Really? What do you do there? Serve the Barrier Goddess, talk about pretty flowers and hate men. Sounds riveting. I can totally see why you'd want to join."
Misaki's eyes gleamed murderously. "Well the 'hating men' part is definitely high on my list of interests at the moment. Perhaps I'll suggest a monthly discussion on what punishments men truly deserve. Wanna know what's first on my list of punishments?" Her teeth were pearly white in its mocking leer. "Let's say it's something I know Hi-sama will appreciate. It involves a needle, salt, lemon juice and castration."
"Don't talk punishment, Misaki-chan," Tono's voice was silky from his right. "You know Tsubasa finds sadistic girls with evil plots a turn-on."
"Tono," Tsubasa hissed. He whipped his gaze towards the voice and saw the senior boy leaning against a nearby tree, watching with an amused smirk on his face. Just looking at him made Tsubasa want to punch him in the face and take a pair of scissors to his hair. Rui would probably kill him though, because as much as the half gay, half transvestite seemed to be warm for his form, the Dangerous Ability type had a really soft spot for men with long, silk hair.
Wha—What the hell was he thinking?!
Slightly disturbed from his thoughts, Tsubasa scratched the back of his head. "Don't you have to follow that Yamanouchi girl with your tail in between your legs?" Tsubasa mocked sullenly, rolling his eyes at the sparkle that immediately appeared in his eyes. "You're disgusting, Tono. Who would've thought a girl could get you so easily wrapped around her finger?"
Tono smirked. "Oh, you're just angry Shizune used her Alice on me to beat you up. Gotta admit though, she could've just asked and the job would've been done. Then again, there's something strangely hot not being able to control my own body…" He chuckled at the disgruntled look on Tsubasa's face when he winked at Misaki. "You know what I'm talking about, don't you, Misaki-chan? What with Tsubasa and his Shadows controlling your every move."
Misaki looked amused.
Tsubasa was not. "Can you not be a pervert for one second?" He growled when Tono decided to take a seat next to Misaki. "I'm trying to settle a dispute here!"
"Oh, don't mind me," Tono grinned. "Continue, continue. I've been listening for a while so I'd love to see what sorry excuse you come up with. Especially the part where you mentioned Misaki here didn't do girly things like Hana Hime."
Misaki's eyes flared at the reminder and she looked like she wanted to cross her arms over her chest. But seeing as he still had control over her shadows, she remained in the same position as he: knees bent, palms flat on the ground just behind her back and posture relaxed. At least he could pretend she didn't want to kill him when she was sitting like that.
"So you don't think I'm a girl, huh, Andou?"
Things were never good when she called him by his last name. Tsubasa knew, then, there must be someone from up there that enjoyed seeing him in pain. Sadistic little bastards.
"I never said that," he sighed. "You're Misaki. You don't care about flowers and petty men grudges. Your best friend is a man!"
"Little boy," coughed Tono.
Ignoring Tono's little jibe, Tsubasa pressed onwards. "I can't picture you wanting anything to do with Hana Hime. Is it wrong that I decided to make things easier for you?"
Misaki looked at him blandly, and Tsubasa knew she was restraining herself from rolling her eyes. "If you'd forgotten, I was practically wetting myself with delight—"
"Always a sexy visual," Tono deadpanned frankly, examining his nails.
"—while I was getting ready for the Hana Hime Festival. I did my hair and everything!" Misaki narrowed her eyes. "I don't tell you every girly thing that I like, Tsubasa. Just because I'm your best friend, doesn't mean I feel the need to tell you I like dolls and giggle at the hot boys that walk by."
"Like me," Tono cut in.
Tsubasa ignored him completely and watched Misaki frown at him disapprovingly. A wry grin made it on to his face. "But you do hate dolls and teddy bears. You think they're creepy unless they're made from Kaname and you know as well as I do that you don't giggle. Girls that giggle make you want to puke." Tsubasa cocked his head to the side to grin boyishly.
"So you know that," Misaki rolled her eyes. "Big deal. Maybe I'm tired of having guy friends. Maybe I'm finally ready to make a few girl friends. God knows all I've ever had is you and Kaname. And with Kaname constantly in the hospital, you're the only thing that's left."
Tsubasa frowned, looking slightly disappointed. "You don't have to make it sound so bad. Geez. Why would you need girl friends for? You tell me about your periods and your trips to Mr. T anyway. What else is it that you're not telling me? I think we've blurred the lines between what a guy should and shouldn't know when his best friend is a girl."
Misaki tried to elbow Tono in the gut when he started sputtering in between laughs about, "Periods?! You talk to him about periods? Wow, Tsubasa. She really doesn't view you as a guy, huh?" but Tsubasa was still controlling her shadows and Misaki was holding back her last nerve.
"You know what? That's hardly the point. The point is, you have no right to be making decisions on my behalf. If I want to join Hana Hime, then that's my choice. You have no say in the matter whatsoever! God, this is why having a girl friend would be nice. Girls are actually sensible." She sent him a scathing look. "Boys are just hopeless."
"If you want a girl friend so bad, why don't you go talk to Rui?" Tsubasa scowled. "He's as good a girl as any."
"Oh," Misaki sounded mock-excited. "I can see how well that would go. He already wants to murder me at every turn because I spend more time with you than anybody else. If I start telling him stuff, that'd make everything better."
Tsubasa would not be deterred. "Rui's fine. If anything, I kind of approve of a relationship with him."
"Only because you know the guy won't go after your girl," Tono snorted briefly, looking very much amused. "You know, this argument really revolves around one thing: Tsubasa wants you all to himself. Simple as that. You want a girl friend. Rui would fit that role but wouldn't pose a threat to his territory. If you joined Hana Hime and actually liked it there, what would become of our dear Tsubasa?" Tono stood up and feigned a thoughtful pose. His mouth widened into a handsome grin. "Poor little Tsubasa would be cold and alone. Maybe he could stay and live with Mr. Bear until Misaki-chan came back. Hmm."
Tsubasa jumped up, sending Misaki toppling off of the table. Waving it off and releasing her shadow, he sprinted after the escaping senior and immediately caught onto his Alice. Tono, in his panic, amplified it. The boy was on his haunches in a painful squat by the time Misaki made it to the scene.
"Misaki-chan, save me!"
Misaki was not amused. "Tsubasa Andou, judging by your reaction, I can only guess Tono was telling the truth. Are you honestly telling me you sabotaged my life because you were jealous?"
"I am not jealous!" Tsubasa sounded indignant. "I have other friends other than you! There's Kaname—"
"—who practically lives in the hospital."
"—whose spirit is usually hopping from one inanimate object to the next."
"I remember you telling me vaguely you never wanted to be my friend."
Tsubasa opened his mouth to continue but couldn't really think of anyone else unless he brought up his kouhais, which was, in itself, kind of sad. Instead he flipped Tono off as the boy ran away and turned to frown at Misaki. "I'm not jealous. It's quality, not quantity that's important," he sniffed.
"Yeah," Misaki scoffed, "—tell that to Rui when he's the only one that wants to hang out with you. You know, if you think about it, Rui isn't that bad. If you gave him a chance, you might like being his friend. But no, you're picky and shun him just because he likes pursuing you rather… seriously." Misaki shook her head. "That's not the point. The point is, you're my best friend, Tsubasa, but you can't be my only friend. When I'm angry with you, who am I supposed to talk to?"
Tsubasa scowled. "You could still talk to me."
"You're so charming," Misaki deadpanned, unimpressed. "While you have a nice guy like Rui to talk to, I have nobody."
"Rui doesn't really count as a person, much less a nice one," Tsubasa argued. He pointed to his cheek where the Mark of Obedience lie, innocent and blue. "How can Amane be a nice guy if he puts curses on people and can inflict pain on them if he so chooses?"
Misaki looked at him blandly. "He likes you, idiot. That mark is because he thinks you're cute. Consider it a compliment." She crossed her arms over her chest and raised an eyebrow. "Besides, you can't judge a person by his Alice. That's just not cool. Didn't you say the same thing about everybody bugging Nobara about her Alice?"
"That's different!" Tsubasa disagreed, frowning. "Amane is the devil's spawn. He's the epitome of evil. He's sadistic and enjoys torturing little children in his spare time. He's just… he's not…" Tsubasa threw up his hands. "Have you not seen what he's done to me?! He's evil! It's a fact! It's proven!"
"Proven by a bias," Misaki huffed. "Whatever, Tsubasa. I think you're being childish."
Tsubasa had many things to say.
Things he knew he'd regret later, things he'd always bottled up inside, things that would change them but he didn't say a word. Anything that would come out of his mouth after that episode would just make her want to tear her hair out and throttle him. Knowing Misaki, she'd probably want to test out her little lemon-castration bit she seemed so keen on earlier.
She wanted so many other things, but all he wanted was her.
Because being best friends with Misaki was enough.
Honestly, they were fifteen now. Fifteen! They'd been best friends since forever and now she wanted something else? Now she wanted to hang out with girls? She'd hit puberty and started growing boobs and hips when she was twelve but that never got her to want to hang out with the other girls before. What was she saying? She never had a problem—
"—hanging out with him before. Why now? Was he not good enough a best friend? He didn't want anybody else. She—why could he hear himself? Was…"
Tsubasa whipped his head around and glared at the elementary school boy who was looking rather intently at the ice cream cone in Misaki's hands. She smiled at him and offered him the treat before the boy licked it and said, "Hi, Tsubasa-senpai."
Licking his slightly dry lips, Tsubasa's scowl intensified. "You'd better run, kid. I don't care if Mikan's your friend. I'm going to kill you."
"Run along, Koko," Misaki winked. She leaned down to give him a peck on the cheek. The kid's jaw dropped and he promptly clapped his hand over the cheek and blushed crimson. "Thanks for helping me out."
Tsubasa merely glared. "You know, just because the kid likes you, doesn't mean you should use him. That's just cruel."
"No," Misaki put her hands on her hips. "Cruel is thinking you have some sort of claim over me. Cruel is making it so that I don't have any other friends but you. You are cruel, Tsubasa. Maybe even more cruel than what you think of Rui-senpai."
There was a thick moment of silence before Tsubasa stirred, wrapping a lazy arm around his knee. "So, are we not friends anymore?"
Misaki sighed and sat next to him, leaning on both of her palms. "We're still friends, Tsubasa."
Hesitantly, "So are you joining Flower Princess Club?"
Her lips thinned and she shoved him none too gently in the shoulder. "You're an idiot."
"Are you?" he pressed.
She took a moment to answer him. Then she sighed, "…Maybe."
I hope the characters were okay. Vote on the poll in my profile?
My Hopeless Romantic