A/N: Missed me? I hope not. xD I've been on a long hiatus, been through a lot of things, and experienced the dreariest Christmas yet. So, don't expect so much for my first unbeta'd RyoSaku fic. Make that a drabble. Anyways, please enjoy and have a happy Christmas. =D (Happy birthday to Ryoma as well.)

Oh, and PoT doesn't belong to me. ^^

Dedication: To the awesome NXYZ Community. Ironic how I'm greeting an OC community with a canon fic. xD Also, to all my friends and classmates who have helped make my Christmas a better celebration. =)


Probably the Eve of Disaster

It was the eve of Christmas Day. Japan, a non-Christian country, wouldn't see this as a holiday, but in fact, it is one of the busiest days in the year, aside from New Year and other important festivals. Christmas actually came to be in the Land of the Rising Sun through marketing propaganda and economic conspiracies.

So where are we headed to now? Oh yes. You all remember the cocky brat, the Prince of Tennis, right? It so happens that today was his birthday, the day he first came into the world, and here he was pretending to be unaware of that fact. I mean, who forgets their birthday?

For one, Ryuuzaki Sakuno was not one to forget that fact. There she was, standing right beside Echizen Ryoma, wondering in her mind what she would do, what she would say, how she would think, what present she would get for him, and lastly, how she coordinated her feet. Making that the least of your priorities always leads to bad things.

You may say that she tripped on her own feet and fell face first on the ground. And Ryoma was there, right beside her. Now he was just there, looking away, feeling indifferent. You know, the works.

"O-Ow," she whimpered, helping herself up.

She looked at him to see if he found her klutziness, well, stupid. She wasn't able to read any response from him whatsoever. His gaze was just averted, and it stayed on a certain object. The vending machine.

She figured that he must be thirsty after drinking five cans of grape Ponta throughout their excursion in the mall, so she decided to speak first. "U-Uh, umm…I'll get us drinks okay?" Ever the shrinking violet.

Ryoma just nodded in acknowledgement, tipping his hat down the slightest to cover his eyes. Sakuno dashed off to the vending machine as he took a seat by the indoor fountain. She returned in good time, roughly five minutes, carrying two cans of grape Ponta. One, we can assume, was for him, and the other, for herself.

She held out the can to him. "Here, Ryoma-kun. Sorry for making you wait."

"It's okay," was his terse reply, taking the can and opening in. He took as sip, and she sat down two feet away from him.

Now, you might be wondering why the two were out together in the mall, by themselves (though we can't guarantee there were meddling senpais out there, somewhere), and on Ryoma's birthday. Let's look back to the morning's events.

RIIING!

"Sakuno, there's a phone call for you!"

"Ah, coming!"

The redhead promptly got out of bed, made it, brushed her long hair, and headed downstairs to answer the call. Her heart was beating pretty hard, having been woken up so suddenly.

"H-Hello. Good morning. This is Ryuuzaki," she spoke.

"Mornin'."

"Ah, RYOMA-KUN?" she exclaimed in surprise. We can imagine the Prince of Tennis pulling the receiver away from his ear at that.

She quickly apologized. "Oh, sorry!"

"Che."

"S-So…what did you call me f-for?" She was nervous to the max, and she had already turned a decent shade of red caused by that and her family's comments.

"I was thinking…the mall."

"Ah, it's your birthday today. I just realized," she sounded.

"Is that so?" He said almost too indifferently. "Well, anyways. The department store entrance at 10. Can you make it?"

"H-H-Hai!" she half-shouted.

"Tch. Okay. Bye."

…and that was how their outing began. They had been walking around the mall, navigating around several people, looking at various items on sale, and buying Ponta constantly for an hour already. Sakuno was beginning to wonder what his motives were for asking her out on that day, on his birthday, and just the two of them at that.

"S-S-So, Ryoma-kun, it's going to be Christmas tomorrow." She attempted to start a conversation with him, but with such a starter, it was surprising that they'd be getting anywhere with that.

"Yeah." His expression stayed the same. He took a sip.

"I guess you celebrated that in America as well."

"Pretty much." He took another sip.

"It's probably even better there, right?"

"I guess so." And another sip.

Sakuno was starting to panic. If she was just going to be boring, he might get fed up and leave. And she didn't want him feeling fed up on his birthday.

"S-So, what kind of present would you want?"

"Nothing." And yet another sip.

"E-Eh? Is that so. U-Um…not even a tennis ball?"

For probably the first time that morning since the two started walking together, their eyes met. They lingered on for probably more than five seconds in silence. Sakuno averted her gaze first since Ryoma's look was too hard to handle.

"…I don't need it." He looked away and tipped his cap. He took another sip of his Ponta.

"Ah, I see." Sakuno did not sound disheartened at all. If reverse-psychology was being applied, she pretty much understood what he meant.

And so their date ended pretty much at that. Okay, not really. They continued walking around for some time till they reached a game center where Ryoma was 'coerced' into playing a game and winning enough tickets to win Sakuno a pink plush toy bigger than her head. Then they managed to pass by a jewelry shop where Sakuno commented on how cute a silver bracelet looked. Afterwards, they had lunch, and after that, they parted ways. Sakuno pretty much felt contented with their little outing.

Now, let's just say that the two of them had the surprise of their lives upon seeing in their bags objects that they knew did not belong to them.

Sakuno nearly fainted when she found that cute silver bracelet in her hand bag. She was almost convinced that she shoplifted when she saw a small tag attached to it. It read 'Merry Christmas. Thank you.' She just looked up to the heavens smiling to herself and thanking the gods.

Ryoma, well, had this shocked expression after checking his tennis bag (which he carried to their outing; a tennis pro must always be prepared). There was an extra tennis ball that looked brand new, except for the trace of marker vandalism on it stating 'Happy Birthday and Merry Christmas. No1.' He smirked to himself as he took it out, only to find a keychain with two small tennis balls with their names engraved on one respectively. He smirked even more as he looked out his window, feeling grateful that he was born that day.

...so maybe all those 'bathroom breaks' paid off.

END


A/N: xD Sorry for the dry humor (as if that can even be counted as humor). I hope you enjoyed~ Have a merry, merry Christmas. Spare me a review? Flames will be used to bake cookies for Santa. xD