Insight

A/N: I heard there's not enough Hyotei stories, so I dug this one up and edited it for posting. :) Do enjoy.

Disclaimer: Characters and series belong to Konomi.


Sobbing. Great. It's coming from the locker room. I have to change. So I can't avoid it. It's getting louder. Ah, it's Jiroh. He must've had another nightmare. He's been having lots of those lately. But that's because he's worried about his little sister, who's having problems at school.

He's crying in to his sleeve and sniffing when I get there.

"What's wrong?"

"I had a scary dream!" He confessed. (I knew it.) "The devil was offering my little sister apples!" He yelled, as if it was the worst thing in the world.

I sat down next to him, put an arm around his shoulders and sighed. "It was just a dream, Jiroh. I'm sure your sister's just fine."

Apples. My hand found itself in front of my face. Apples. I closed my eyes, just for a moment. Apples – not only the fruit of temptation, but also an allergy for the little Akutagawa. The devil probably signified that older girl Akutagawa-chan's dealing with, as the devil usually symbolizes evil. Shishido'd said they were discussing Faustian tales in their lit class.

"Yeah, you're probably right." Jiroh sniffed, wiping his eyes with his fingers. "I just – I'm so worried about her."

"Mm," I answer slowly. He starts up explaining the whole situation to me. From the older girl and how she was trying to get his little sister to do something bad to the fights that keep almost happening and how he knows she won't fight back because their whole family are lovers, not fighters. And then from his older brother's problems to his older brother's worries about his two little siblings.

Like I don't have enough to worry about.

At least he feels better.

He jumps up and runs home. It's me alone now. Kabaji went home early because he wasn't feeling well. Shishido and Mukahi are fighting worse than usual, possibly because Jiroh's too worried about his home life to diffuse the situation. This is putting Oshitari on edge because his partner's not focused or playing well. And Ootori's worried about everyone, as well as he may be coming down with something like Kabaji is.

At least Hiyoshi doesn't seem to have any problems. That kid, I don't need to worry about, at leaβ€”

What was that? A slam? "Who just came in?" I ask. (Because Ore-sama won't turn around for just anyone.)

"Hiyoshi." He mumbles. Unhappily. I turn as he throws his locker open and starts digging for the things he left with his tennis equipment.

"Oh no."

He turns to glare at me. (I honestly said it on accident.) His eyes are puffy. My hand makes its way back up to my face. "That teacher said something to you again, didn't she?"

He looked away. That means yes, coming from Hiyoshi. "I can't gekokujou her because I'm not a teacher," he offers half-heartedly.

"I understand, Hiyoshi." (Sort of.) "You should switch classes, anyway. You should be in advanced placement."

"Of course I should." He answered. He just didn't want to seem inferior to me. (Though, he already did.) "Thank you, though, Buchou. I'll be going then." And he did, after nodding to me.

Like I didn't have enough to worry about. Hiyoshi's just another one to the list. That's all the regulars except –

Oh.

Taki's no longer a regular. That's probably upsetting to him.

Damn.


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