Ah, Tactics. You can tell that Haruka and Kantarou want each other. All the time. So, this is just a little scene of fluffiness that I think would happen when Valentine's Day rolls around. Nothing really much to say here. No, you never get to know what Youko whispers to Suzu, but I think you can guess, hm?
Read and review, you know the drill!
Disclaimers: I never realized how boring it got after the twentieth time you wrote one of these. No, I don't own Tactics, nor am I making anything off of this story. I want to share it with the WORLD! (I just scared myself…)
Kantarou let the pen slip lifelessly from his fingers. He wasn't in a writing mood anyway, even though his deadline was four days away (as Reiko kept reminding him). He let his head fall upon his desk, silver hair shielding crimson eyes. He had no idea what was wrong with him. He suspected he might be sick. Ever since Suzu two days ago had informed everyone in the Ichinomiya household of the upcoming Valentine's Day, Kantarou's mood had taken a turn for the worse. His appetite had lessened as his cynicism had increased. Sleeping, he found, was pointless. He didn't feel like doing anything.
Everyone had noticed this sudden drop of temperature in Kantarou's emotional atmosphere. No one was quite sure why Valentine's Day had such a negative effect on the folklorist (though Youko was beginning to harbor a guess), but each person had tried to cheer up Kantarou. Even Haruka had made a slight effort that Kantarou had barely acknowledged.
"Maybe he doesn't like sweets?" suggested Suzu with a puzzled air.
"No way," replied Youko, waving a hand in front of her face. The five of them (including Muu-chan) were seated cross-legged around a table while Kantarou worked (theoretically). Reiko was nowhere to be found, supposedly shopping for Valentine's Day.
"Does he not like pink?" questioned Sugino, accompanied by a 'Muu!'
"Well…" mused Youko. "It's not his favorite color, but I don't think seeing so much of it would make him depressed."
Haruka took a sip of tea from his battered bowl. "Maybe he thinks he won't receive anything this year."
A silence fell as the five contemplated this (though who knows if Muu-chan can contemplate?).
"Nooo," Youko said finally. "I always get him something, and he always gives me something in return. I think it's…" She glanced conspiratorially over at Haruka and leaned down to whisper into Suzu's ear.
Suzu listened for a moment. Blushing slightly, she nodded in agreement when Youko was finished and they both glanced at Haruka.
"What?" demanded Sugino, bursting at the seams with curiosity. He turned to Haruka. "What did they say, ogre-eater?"
Haruka sipped again, un-concerning and uncaring. "How should I know?"
"Ahh! What did you say?"
But both Youko and Suzu simply giggled, leaned in closer, and began discussing once more in low tones.
Valentine's Day came, pink and red, coated with chocolate, and edged in frilly lace. Kantarou got up, saw the continually stretching line of girls waiting to give their gifts to Haruka, and (claiming sickness) went back to bed.
Haruka got up, saw the line of girls (half of whom fell over in a dead faint from sighting him), and raised an eyebrow.
"They're waiting for you," clarified Youko.
Youko sighed and put a hand against her cheek. "You've smitten them all with a mighty charm, Haruka. They're here to adorn you with a multitude of gifts."
Haruka stared at the chattering girls with some disgust. "Do I have to?"
"Yes, Haruka, you have to. Deal with the consequences! Just accept their gift, say 'thank you', and send them on their way."
"Hai…" sighed Haruka.
Most of his day was spent accepting the gifts that the ladies gave to him. They ranged from simple chocolates ("I made it myself," the young girl claimed, eyes sparkling) to full-blown cakes ("It's filled with love") and even rings ("MARRY ME!" the girl said breathily, falling sobbing to her knees. Haruka politely declined). Eventually, well into the evening, the line slowed to a trickle and then stopped. The relieved Haruka stared at the massive pile of candy, feeling sick.
Youko clapped her hands in delight. "This should feel us for awhile!" Then she pursed her lips and glanced at the black winged ogre-eater. "Haruka...can I make a deal with you?"
Kantarou heard his door slide open and rolled his head to stare in surprise at Haruka. Sitting up, he yawned and blearily rubbed his eyes, looking sleepy and (dare Haruka think it?) extremely cute.
"Oh…Haruka…" He smiled a little, but it was a half-hearted attempt, tinged with sadness. "Done greeting your admirers?"
Haruka nodded and opened his mouth. Hesitating, he tried to remember exactly what Youko had said.
-"First," ordered Youko. "Wake him up."-
-"Next," she continued, "tell him you have something for him."-
"I have something for you," Haruka felt his mouth say.
-"Something for Valentine's Day."-
"Something for Valentine's Day."
Kantarou looked puzzled, but nodded.
-"Finally…" Youko held up a finger and grinned. "Kiss him!"-
Haruka's brain stuttered to a halt. What? "Uh…" When had he agreed to do that? Was he remembering incorrectly? He thought back. No, that was what Youko had said. Why on Earth had he agreed to do that?
-"Don't you want to cheer up Kantarou? Besides…" And she had pulled out something square and covered in brown paper. Letting an edge slip slightly, he caught sight of a glint of something shiny before it was covered up. "I'll give you this." The fox demon had waved it tauntingly in his face.-
Damn you, curiosity, Haruka mentally raged. Ah, well. She didn't say on the lips, after all…
Haruka knelt next to Kantarou, whose look was still puzzled and clueless. Heh. His master could be such an idiot at times. Hell, all the time.
Slowly he leaned forward, and placed a gentle kiss on Kantarou's cheek.
Pulling back, he smirked when he saw his master's cheeks aflame. "H-Haruka…"
Haruka rose. There his job was done. Now to see what Youko had promised him…
He stopped in surprise when he felt resistance. Glancing down, he saw a pale hand clutching at his pant leg, stark against the black material. Silver locks shielded blood red eyes.
"Could you…" His voice broke slightly, like he was about to cry. Haruka watched his adam's apple bob as his young master swallowed. "Could you kiss me again? Haruka?" But it wasn't an order.
Haruka felt his gut twist a little. Gods, he hated it when his master looked so…forlorn. When had he grown so attached? He shouldn't feel this – hadn't he said it himself? Humans and demons just can't get along…
But suddenly it didn't seem to matter. He turned back around and Kantarou released him, looking up at him with hope in those childish eyes. Kneeling next to him again, deep blue met red. Kantarou turned his head slightly to offer his cheek. Haruka moved forward…
…and Kantarou abruptly twisted his head and caught him full on the lips.
Youko put an ear up to Kantarou's door. Neither Haruka nor Kantarou had emerged from Kantarou's room since Haruka had entered.
A long silence, but the heavy kind where the silence makes it all the more obvious that some sound is trying to hide. Then a breathy, cut off moan that sounded suspiciously like Kantarou's.
Youko blushed and pulled away from the door, smiling. Ah, love was in the air. It was, after all, Valentine's Day.