Today, my teacher told me that I was an exceptional child.
I was so happy. I thought that it would make you proud. That maybe, you would just notice me for once…
But when I told you, you just pushed me away, an annoyed look on your face.
It was like you didn't want me there.
Mum… Why do you hate me so much?
I just learnt that today is Mother's Day.
Maybe that's why you're angry with me? Because I haven't been giving you any gifts during the past few years of my live?
I'm sorry Mum…
I'm going to get you the best present ever, watch me.
But I hope that you'll show me your smile.
Please, just for once?
Almost every day, I write these letters to you. Then, I keep them in a box under my bed.
But you never find them, because after all, how can you when you haven't been into my room for ages?
It's been seven years, three months and 12 days since 'that' happened Mum.
Why won't you forgive me?
Everyone told me that it wasn't my fault.
But you think that it was my fault, and I think so too.
I'm sorry that father died because of me, Mum.
I'm sorry for breaking your heart.
I'm sorry for erasing your smile, that beautiful smile that I see on the picture of you and dad every day.
But I hope… No, I pray that you'll forgive me.
Because Mum, you're my world, and it hurts when you ignore me like that.
Today is my first day of junior high school.
I hope that you're proud.
I got first in my level, and the teacher said that I'll have to give a speech.
Though I'm a little nervous, I hope that it'll bring a smile to your face.
I hope that it'll give you the warm feeling that it gives me.
I hope that you'll talk to me again.
Today, I met a boy.
His name is Sanada Genchirou.
He's strong, very strong.
I saw his parents sending him off to school this morning.
They said encouraging words, kissed him on the forehead, waved and left only when they couldn't see him anymore.
I wonder… Why don't you do that with me?
I've just made friends with Sanada-Kun.
When I first saw him, he was all silent, so I didn't like him.
He reminded me of you.
You wouldn't talk to me, you wouldn't look at me and you wouldn't care for me.
But everything changed.
When I was eating my lunch alone, leaning my back against a tree, two boys came.
I didn't know what they wanted, so I just glared at them.
But to my shock, one of them pulled me up by the collar.
They called me a nerd and started to attack me.
I tried to defend myself, but they overpowered me.
Even though I've been training myself during tennis practice, they held me down and one started to suffocate me.
I was afraid, so afraid.
But I didn't cry.
Because I knew that if I did, you would be disappointed in me.
And I never want that, ever.
I was nearly on the verge of suffocating, I could tell.
They were laughing, laughing at how pathetic I looked.
Then, he came.
Like an angel, he fought then off, a furious look on his face.
He protected me…
And when I asked him why, he just said "Because."
I decided that day, that I want him by my side, no matter what.
Because it gave me a glimmer of hope, that you might just be like him, and save me one day too.
I finally got my wish.
With the help of another boy called Yanagi Renji, we defeated our sempai-tachi.
I became buchou and Sanada became my fuku-buchou.
I was so happy.
Finally, I could be with him.
He was someone who cared about me, someone who would stand at my back, supporting me.
Someone that would hold me in his arms, fix my broken heart, and never let me cry again.
Someone I might love.
Rikkai Dai won the Nationals.
I couldn't believe it. It was just so… so amazing.
When our victory was announced… Everyone was clapping, cheering, screaming with happiness.
If this is what it feels like to be happy, I want to do it again.
Together, with my teammates, I want to make my heart feel like it's bursting again.
But I hope that you'll notice when I put the trophy up on the award cupboard in the living room.
Because even though I have everyone by my side now…
It still feels lonely without you, Mom.
Today, I met the most adorable first year ever.
He had curly black hair, pouty pink lips, and the most determined, emerald-green eyes I've ever seen.
It made me quite ashamed, that a boy younger than me could be so strong…
Look at me, a weak, little boy hiding behind the cover of a strong, determined captain.
But you wouldn't know, would you?
Nine freaking years, even I'm starting to lose faith.
… I better stop now, it won't do anything good.
Nothing ever does.
I've finally acquired the perfect team.
But what amuse me is that everyone sees us as a family.
There's me – The Demigod, the captain, the one that every respects. But because of my feminine looks, everyone named me the Mother of Rikkai Dai.
And then, there's Sanada – The Fukubuchou, the Emperor, the one every fears. And of course, he's the stern father.
There's also Niou – The Trickster that everyone just can't help but laugh with when he grins crazily with that 'Puri' of his. If I have to describe him, I would call him the crazy teenage son we had.
Yagyuu was a surprise. Niou just dragged him to practice one day and he just became a regular the next. He's truly a demon in disguise, that one. He would be Niou's twin.
Marui's a little red-head spunk. He's our daughter, the one who gushes about cake and sweets, and pushes everything to Uncle Jackal.
Jackal would be Sanada's brother, the uncle of our children, babysitting them and getting exasperated at their antics.
And Kirihara would be our little baby, the apple of our eyes, the one we're willing to kill for.
My family… They really made me happy.
But what would be really great is, if you would take on the role of the grandmother, silently overlooking me.
I think they're starting to suspect something about my family.
Everyone has been to each other's house, except for mine.
Today, Kirihara asked if he and the others could come here, to celebrate us winning yet another match.
I told them that you had something on with a strained smile on my smile.
He pouted in disappointment, and asked me when he could come and see my house.
I just said, "Maybe next time."
But the others were staring at me with a weird look on their face.
I guess that they have caught on.
Never have I talked about my family.
It's always them, telling everyone about their parents' ickiness when they kissed or hug, or their siblings' idiocy.
But yet, they always have a smile on their face when they described their families' antics.
I'm jealous, jealous that they could have so much fun with their family who care about them.
The very thing I'm deprived of.
Why can't I have the same thing as them?
I should go to sleep now… It doesn't do any good getting mad over this, since it was my fault in the first place…
Hopefully, tomorrow will be a better day.
Something's really wrong with me, Mum.
Today, I tried to hit a smash, but the racket flew out of my hands.
Everyone was shocked, nothing like that had happened ever before.
I don't know what happened.
For some reason, my body doesn't seem to be cooperating with me now of days.
Yesterday, when I wanted to get off the bench after overlooking the team for about half an hour, my legs wouldn't move.
I was so afraid…
But it was okay again after five minutes.
I think Renji noticed something though, he seems to be staring at me more frequently now of days.
It might just be his data-collecting thing though.
I really hope that I'm right.
I'm feeling really exhausted.
Even Kirihara noticed something was wrong when I got a dizzy spell and almost toppled over today.
Practice seems like torture to me now.
I had to rest three times today during afternoon practice, or my legs would have given out.
I didn't even played a single match, saying that I wanted to see them play.
I'm afraid, afraid of what's happening to me, afraid of them knowing that there's something really wrong with me.
I just want to sleep, and never wake up again.
Today, I planned to go on a trip with the other regulars.
But everything went wrong as soon as I got into the train.
The others were really kind to me. They knew that something was wrong to me, but they only thought that I was feeling off or something.
I wish that it was only that.
As soon as I got on the train, my nerves just went wacky.
No, I'm not talking about nerves as in 'nervous' nerves, I'm talking about the nerves in my mind, controlling my body.
My breath got quicker as the train sped past the buildings, the hills, the fields. My vision seemed to dim, even though it was afternoon and the hot sun was glaring through the transparent windows.
When the train finally stopped, I shuffled off the train and then, it happened.
My mind became foggy and my body just seemed to shut off.
The only thing I knew was that I was falling, falling, and everything turned black.
I woke up to in a white room.
The regulars were staring at me with something akin to pity.
I don't need their pity, I don't want it! I'm not weak! They don't need to treat me like I was fragile or something.
I just wished that they would stop treating me like this. Just because I had some kind of illness, they expect me to just give in to it.
I'll fight, I'll recover, and I won't fall just because of this.
I'm not going to give up.
I hate this.
I hate having to stay in this little room filled with a sickly white, having nothing to do but to stare blankly into space until I get tired and fall asleep.
I hate having to watch my friends come in, all sweaty from practice, while I can only smile weakly at them and try not to puke up my meal.
I hate not being able to play tennis, to go to school… to not see you.
But there's nothing I can do.
Writing this letter is already tiring for me. Every letter brings a sweat to my forehead, a wrinkle to my brow.
And you won't even be reading this letter.
The days are turning dark for me.
I haven't been able to see your face for a long time. Have you even realized that I'm gone?
Maybe you have…
But if you did, why aren't you here to visit me?
I'm sorry for anything I've done to you.
But my days are numbered. I may not be able to live through this.
There's a surgery, but there might be a chance that I may not survive.
I want to take it… but I'm afraid that it won't be a success.
What if I'm reduced to a useless state, not being able to move, to speak, to convey my thoughts to you through these letters?
I've to stop now… My friends will be coming soon, and I don't want them to know about this.
But I'll tuck this letter under my pillow, so that I know that there's something I'm fighting for, other than tennis.
Pray for me, Mum.
This might very well just be the last letter I'll be writing to you.
All this years, I've been writing these letters, trying to convey my feelings, but you've never found them, never.
Even though I left them in a box right under my bed, where any other mother would have found easily, you didn't.
But I'm not mad with you, mum.
Because to me, you're the only mother I want, the only mother I would ever have.
Sometimes, I wonder if you regret having me.
I'm nothing merely but a burden to you, after all.
To you, I'm just another extra mouth to feed, to take care of.
If I hadn't been born, father would still be alive.
After all, he wouldn't have pushed me away and got knocked down by the car instead.
Do you still remember his last words?
I doubt it.
You were so shock, I saw you broke down right there and then…
But those words were kept in my heart, warming me up on the coldest day, telling me to continue living on, for you, for my friends.
"Protect your mother, Seiichi. Tell her I love her. And I love you too. I'll be looking at you from Heaven, make me proud."
And so, I decided to take the surgery.
I want to make him proud, to make him say, "You did a good job, son."
I will fight, to will my body to recover. For this is just a minor setback to me, and no matter what, I'll bring Rikkai Dai to win their third consecutive Nationals.
But I wished that you could see me just before the surgery takes place.
Even though I put on a strong front, even though I just smile at the others to show how confident I am… I'm still scared.
Scared at what else could happen.
I'm asking Sanada to hand the letters I have been writing to you.
I think he understands my request. He looked at me with a solemn glance and said that he would talk to you.
I'm not sure of what he will say, but I hope that he won't say anything hurtful.
Mum,if, if you are feeling sorry…
I forgive you.
Because you're my mom, and I love you, I really do.
I love the way your eyes crinkle when you smile, the way your golden-brown hair caress your beautiful face, the way that no matter what, you won't back down from any problems you face.
If…If I don't survive… Please help me tell my friends...,
And don't be sad, for… for I'll just be meeting father earlier than you.
I'll tell him how brave you have been all these years, working hard to support me, to support yourself.
And that you're the best mum ever.
After all, you're my only mother, and I don't want any other.
Her eyes filled with tears as she stared at the letters in her hands.
All these years… All these years, she had not taken care of her son the way a mother was suppose to.
She had failed - failed her parents, failed her husband, failed her son… she failed herself!
"Seiichi… Where is he?" She whispered pleadingly to the boy in front of her.
She gauge that he was Sanada Genchirou – the boy, no, teen that had helped her son all these years, when she hadn't.
He stared at her with something akin to anger, and she flinched. She should have expected it though. After all, who would want to lead her, the person who was the cause of Seiichi's misery, to Seiichi himself?
"Kanagawa Hospital." He stated simply, and she smiled.
It felt wonderful, to smile for the first time after her husband's death. She guessed that even though she had been trying to convince herself that she had, she had never actually gotten over it.
"Thank you." She whispered and she hurried to the car. Without even needing to beckon to him, the cap-wearing boy silently followed her, not wanting to waste any time.
They only had half an hour before Yukimura would have his operation
And Kanagawa Hospital was exactly thirty minutes away.
"Where can Fuku-Buchou be?" Kirihara muttered anxiously as he started to nibble on his nails, getting amused looks from his teammates.
"Bakaya, he'll be here soon, don't worry!" Niou grinned madly and threw an arm around his frustrated junior's neck.
Kirihara glared up childishly, his lips stuck out in a pout.
"Akaya." Yanagi stated warningly, and Kirihara sighed, obeying the Data Master's words.
Who was one to disobey one of the Three Demons after all?
Definitely not our dear little Akaya, that's for sure.
A soft chuckle made everyone brightened up, and they rushed to their Buchou's beside.
"Buchou, are you feeling better now?" Jackal asked withholding Kirihara back from hugging Yukimura to death, literally.
Yukimura nodded, or he nodded as much as a person could while lying down, and smiled at them.
"Thank you." He whispered, and they sighed.
"There you go again, Mura-Buchou!" Marui huffed out. "Making yourself sound like you're about to die or something. Sheesh, you're the Demigod, you're our Buchou. Don't be so pessimistic."
Yukimura blinked, had he really been like that?
"Yes, Seiichi, you really were. You sent everyone goodbye letters, made a backup plan for the Nationals if you wouldn't be joining us, and even made a will." Yanagi said wryly, and Yukimura blushed.
"I'm sorry… But what would you do if you have an incurable disease?" He winced as instead of his usual melodic voice, a raspy voice came out from his dry throat.
The team shuffled uncomfortably, not liking the topic that they were on, especially since the operation was soon to begin.
As if on cue, two nurses in uniform came in, throwing apologetic looks at them.
"We're sorry, but your friend has to be prepared for the operation now. Please leave." One said as they began to put on gloves.
They nodded, and just before the curtains closed, Kirihara shouted.
"Buchou, fight on!"
And then, they left, Yukimura's weak smile engraved into their memories.
Sanada let out a silent sigh of relief as the car screech to a stop. You would too, if you had just sped down the streets, barely missing some pedestrians, at 100 mph/hr.
"This way." He stated emotionlessly before racing into the hospital.
Click. Clack. Click. Clack.
He turned behind, wondering what was making the loud noise, and almost banged his head against the wall in frustration.
What was the woman thinking when she put on high heels?
Biting back a groan, he glanced down at his watch.
It would be two minutes before the operation started.
Throwing away his dignity, he picked the older woman up in his arms, and sprinted towards where he knew the operation would take place.
He could only pray that he would reach in time.
"Okay, you're all ready now."
Yukimura sighed at those chirpy words.
There was a chance that he might not survive, but yet…
He didn't feel afraid anymore, just… numb.
"Ready to go?" The nurse bent down and smiled, and he weakly nodded to her.
"All right, here we go~" She beamed as her colleague and her began to push the portable bed, and he thanked her in his heart.
He knew that she was trying to make him feel better, and he really did feel much braver.
Taking one more glance at the trophy that his teammates had rushed to show him, he finally closed his eyes.
"Fight on!" He remembered Kirihara shouting at him just moments ago.
He would, he would fight, fight against the illness residing in his body.
He was Yukimura Seiichi, the captain of his team, his friends… his family.
The Rikkai Dai regulars shot up as the door opened, revealing the two nurses pushing the bed holding Yukimura out of the room.
Yukimura had the normal light green hospital clothes on. His eyes were closed, possibly due to the effect of the drug they would have given him.
They gulped at how pale his face was. Yukimura had probably been holding all those dark thoughts to himself again.
When he had fainted at the train station, everyone's hearts felt like it would pop out of their mouth.
They had never seen their captain looking so frail, nor have they ever seen their fuku-buchou looking so afraid.
To them, Yukimura and Sanada were the supports of Rikkai Dai. Without them, Rikkai Dai would clearly fall.
But the Kantou Tournament had given them hope.
They had fought with all their hearts, their spirits, and it was satisfying watching the shock on the Segaiku players' faces when they beat them 5-0.
When Yukimura let a beam cross his face as they showed him the gold trophy, they felt like they were in heaven.
They knew that they had done him proud.
And they knew that now, he was going to be the one struggling, to make them proud.
They would wait… Wait for the signal on the operation room to turn green, signaling that the surgery was successful.
Their Buchou was just that strong, and they would never doubt it.
He would overcome the challenge that Kami-Sama had thrown him.
For, he was, the Demigod, after all.
They smiled weakly as the bed was slowly pushed, nearer and nearer into the room.
Come back quickly, Buchou.
Sanada sighed in relief as the nurses stopped pushing the bed in surprise.
Even though just barely, he had made it.
He saw the figure on the bed stirred from his loud shout, and he smiled.
Seiichi would be happy.
And that was all that mattered to Sanada.
"Go." He commanded as he placed the woman backed on her feet.
She nodded gratefully to him as she hurried to her son.
Seiichi's eyes were opened in shock.
"Kaa-San?" He asked in bewilderment. He pleaded that it was not the effect of the drug he was under, that his mother was really there, looking at him with concern in her eyes.
"Seiichi, I'm sorry." She whispered as she bent down, hugging her son carefully.
Tears openly dropped from both their eyes as they finally felt the warmth that had been lost for so long.
"No, I'm sorry… Sorry because Tou-San, he-!" Seiichi stopped apologizing when his mother put a finger to his dry lips, silencing him.
"Ssshh… It's not your fault. You were just a child then, it couldn't have been your fault. He-, I, I love you, my baby boy, and don't ever doubt it." She placed a kiss on his forehead, and he finally sank into unconscious with relief.
"Ma'am, we'll have to bring him in now." The nurses broke the lovely moment, returning them back to their senses.
"Alright, take him in." She said, her face sorrowful as she watched her son being pushed in.
She didn't remember him growing up.
She didn't remember him becoming the strong young man he was now.
She didn't remember him leading his team to the Nationals, and winning it too.
She would remember him, being pushed into the surgery room and fighting for his life.
She would remember him being able to influence the people around him, for she could tell that they loved him so much.
She would remember him for the days to come.
She would never let him feel alone again.
Letting a smile adorned her beautiful face, she turned to the boys, and bowed.
"Thank you for taking care of my son during all this time, especially you, Sanada-Kun. If it weren't for you all, he wouldn't have been the person he was today. I sincerely thank you from the bottom of my heart."
They nodded, blushing at the praise.
"Wait, no, we should thank you for giving birth to him because without him, we wouldn't have gone that far either!" Kirihara blurted out, before clapping a hand to his mouth, horrified at what he just said.
An awkward silence filled the room, before laughter could be heard from every corner of the hospital.
"Oh my…" She put a hand to her cheek in amusement.
If this was her son's team, she could very well get used to them in her life.
"If, no, when Seiichi is able to be discharge from the hospital… would you like to come to our house and throw a party to celebrate it?" She beamed at the excited nods from the more expressive ones in the team.
"Yay, a party!" Kirihara shouted in delight, but quiet down as Sanada threw him a glare.
"We would like it, Yukimura-San." Yanagi said, already recording down data about her in his notebook.
And she smiled.
Her heart was finally free from its clutches of the dark memories of the past.
-Sighs in relief- It's finally done… How is it? Did you like it? ^^ Sorry if there wasn't good, but I tried. Please do review to tell me what you think!
Once again (even though it's quite late), A happy Mother's Day to everyone ^^ Part 2 of the Atobe one will be updated later tomorrow(?)
Posted: 9 March 12:41AM