Disclaimer: I don't own Prince of Tennis or its characters.
Sanada Genichirou frequently visited the park near his apartment building. The park was relatively peaceful and had several wide tennis courts that belong to a small tennis club, which he paid monthly to use its faculties.
Since Sanada had been there so often, he expected nothing different to happen that Sunday evening when he went there after a long shift at the restaurant he worked part-time at.
Grabbing his tennis bag, Sanada walked out of his apartment, ready to play several long rounds of tennis. It was one of the main ways he kept his body in shape.
Sanada walked for five minutes and down two streets before arriving at the park with the lit up tennis courts. He greeted the manager by lowering his head and touching the rim of the black cap he always wore on his head.
The capped male was quite respected in these small courts. In fact, he was undefeated. He played matches with others when asked, but he usually kept to himself, hitting the balls at the wall or having a machine shoot the balls at him at various speeds. He never refused a match, but barely anyone dared challenge him anymore.
Sanada tied his running shoes tightly and took his racket out of his bag. He began walking toward the empty D court, greeting the familiar faces around him with a small nod of his head.
That was when Sanada spotted him.
On the sidelines of the B court stood a young man. Sanada knew he had never seen this young man before because he most certainly would have remembered that smooth and fair skin, that dark blue and silky hair, and that graceful figure. Sanada's breath caught and he couldn't help staring, nearly bumping into a bench. That young man was gorgeous. Sanada had never seen anyone more beautiful.
Suddenly, Sanada was no longer walking towards the D court. He was now walking in a straight line towards the beautiful young man who had captivated his heart in just a few seconds. Even wearing simple exercise shorts and a loose t-shirt, the bluenette looked exquisite. Sanada guessed the young man was around 18. Certainly not any older than Sanada was.
Coming closer, Sanada could see that the young man was texting at a swift pace on his cellphone. A tennis racket was leaning against the bluenette's leg as he leaned back against the fence.
Soon, Sanada was standing right before the object of his sudden affection.
It took only a few seconds for the young man to notice Sanada. After finishing a text, the bluenette looked up… and up again to stare right at Sanada's face. He seemed a little bewildered at being stared at by Sanada, who quite bigger and taller than he was.
"Hello, can I help you?" asked the young man. His voice was soft and refreshing, almost feminine.
Oh, right. What was Sanada supposed to say? He guessed showing up out of nowhere and saying "Hi, I just fell in love with you so lets get married" would be pretty stupid and would probably scare off the young man.
"U-Um, hello. I err… n-noticed you being a new face around here." said Sanada, lamely thinking up of excuses. He was embarrassed to notice his trembling voice. He really needed to talk to people more often.
The bluenette beamed up at him. "Why, yes I am. A friend recommended this park, saying it was peaceful and had strong players."
"Can I play a match against you?" Sanada splattered out the request as soon as it came to his mind. He almost regretted it. He hoped he didn't sound too imposing. "I-I mean, if you aren't busy then maybe…"
"Oh, don't worry. I just got here. I was actually wallowing at the fact that I had no opponent to play with." said the young man, smiling angelically. "I would love to play a match, but I warn you; I am quite skilled at this sport."
"Yes, thank you! I-I am not bad myself." stuttered out Sanada, knowing he was blushing. He lowered his cap to hide his reddening cheeks. This was awful. He never blushed so easily. His own body was betraying him. Curse his lack of social skills.
"I'll be the judge of that." said the bluenette, grabbing his racket and heading off. "Court D is open."
They walked to the empty court, both of them taking opposite sides. Sanada was made to serve first. He noticed a few people around looking at their starting match. Sanada was well-known at the park for being a good player, so of course he would attract a small crowd.
Sanada briefly wondered if he should go easy on the bluenette. The young man looked so weak and fragile that it made Sanada want to protect him. Yet, that shapely body did seem to have a small amount of muscle. Would he be insulting the young man by going easy?
In the end, Sanada decided to give the bluenette a chance at first. He served a normal overhand serve, not hitting it as powerfully as he usually did. To his shock, the ball flew right back at the far right corner on his side of the court, so fast that Sanada didn't have time to react.
"Love-15." said the bluenette in a smug voice. "Come now, don't tell me that's all you got."
Sanada's competitive side came up quickly. "Don't flatter yourself. I was going easy on you." he shouted back. Taking a ball out of his pocket, Sanada served with as much power as he could. When the ball flew back, he was already at the net, hitting it sharply to the side. The bluenette didn't get the ball on time.
"15-15." said Sanada.
The bluenette gave a feral smile. "Well well, looks like you can play after all. This should be interesting."
As the match went on, Sanada was forced to conclude that this young man was no normal player. Sanada used all of his best moves, yet they were all returned effortlessly. He ended up sweating enormously as he was forced to run from corner to corner, barely managing to win even one point for himself.
Sanada was so engrossed in the game, wanting so badly to defeat this alluring new opponent that he lost count of the score. To his surprise, a person from the audience, who had been watching the intense match in it entirety, shouted out that the score was 0-6 for the young man, meaning Sanada had lost and the match was now over.
It was quite a shock. Sanada couldn't remember the last time he had lost, and at tennis of all things! This defeat was completely humiliating; he hadn't even gotten one game from the bluenette. He walked to the bench, drinking water to aid his scalping throat. He was so out of breath.
The young man approached him soon after, also panting heavily. The bluenette's eyes were wide and excited. Sanada internally groaned. He had just made a fool of himself in front of this beautiful person, losing so pathetically. Sanada wiped his face with his towel.
"It has been a while since I've had such a challenging opponent." the bluenette said.
"You don't have to lie. I was pathetic. I underestimated you." said Sanada.
"I am not lying. You are a very talented player… umm…"
"Sanada. Sanada Genichirou." said Sanada, realizing he hadn't even introduced himself.
The bluenette nodded. "Sanada-san, you are a lot better than I expected you to be. I have also underestimated you. I thought you would be like all other big muscled guys with huge egos and no actual talent. I am glad to see that my assumption was false." said the young man. Sanada flushed a bit at the compliments. "It was a pleasure playing with you, and I mean it."
The young man began walking away but soon turned his head back. "By the way, my name is Yukimura Seiichi. Perhaps we'll meet again soon. I'd love a re-match with you."
Sanada sat there on the bench in a daze, watching Yukimura walk away. He barely registered the presence of other people around him. Everyone in the audience was excitedly speaking about the intense match they had just witnessed.
"Wow, so there is someone stronger than that Sanada out there!" said a person from the audience.
"Who was that guy? He was so..." said a girl's voice.
"Seriously, guys like that don't just pop out of nowhere. Think he's a famous tennis player?"
Sanada's dazed mind slowly became alert as he listened to the audience talk. That's right… guys like Yukimura didn't come around everyday. Sanada didn't recall the last time he had met someone that made his heart jump so much, someone who Sanada actually wanted to be around. What if… what if Sanada never saw Yukimura again? He felt a pain in his chest at the thought. No… he had to meet the young man again.
Without thinking, Sanada got up and ran towards the gates where Yukimura had gone through just seconds earlier. Sanada quickly spotted the bluenette on the sidewalk.
"Yukimura-san!" yelled out Sanada, running as if his life depended on it.
Turning around, Yukimura looked shocked to see Sanada stop running right in front of him. "Sanada-san? What's wrong? Have I forgotten something?" he asked.
Sanada didn't know why he did it, but next thing he knew, he was bowing down at a perfect 90 degree angle in front of Yukimura, unable to hold in his feelings.
"Yukimura-san, I love you. Please go out with me!" said Sanada out of the blue. His eyes were shut, his head facing down in a bow. He felt his cap nearly sliding off from the angle of his bow.
Sanada was almost afraid to look up, but he did anyways after a long moment of silence.
Yukimura looked bemused and perplexed at the sudden confession. Sanada sighed. Well, at least he had gotten it out. He didn't really regret it though. He felt ready to do anything to stay by the bluenette's side longer and he had no intention of hiding his feelings.
"Ah… that is… very kind of you, Sanada-san. I'm flattered, really." said Yukimura, choosing his words carefully. "But…" Sanada's heart sank at that word. "I have only just met you. I'm sorry but I do not date someone I have just met." Yukimura looked apologetic. "I am sure you are a wonderful person, and I do find you very good-looking… but I will have to decline."
"I completely understand." said Sanada, bringing his body straight up again. His stubbornness was coming in and he knew he would never forgive himself if he let the bluenette just slip through his fingers like that. "How about we get to know each other better then?" he proposed.
"Well, that is… to say you love me so easily is not…"
"We don't have to go on real dates like a couple. I don't need an answer right now. We can just go out as friends a few times. Have a tennis re-match. Then when you are ready, you can consider my proposal again." said Sanada, not planning on giving up at all. "At the same time, I will get to know you better as well. Please consider it."
Yukimura looked thoughtful, shifting his balance from one foot to the next. Sanada's gaze didn't falter, but he felt a bead of sweat run down the side of his face.
"You are quite stubborn, Sanada-san." Yukimura finally said.
"I am. I have no intention of giving up on you."
"Perseverance is an admirable trait. But really, you cannot expect me to trust a complete stranger so easily."
"We can just meet up a few times, as friends only." said Sanada. "Just friends. No romance, no holding hands, nothing of the sort. Just a few hours together… we can play tennis if that's all you want."
"Look, I don't-"
"Please." Sanada sounded desperate, which would be tarundoru in any other circumstances. All he knew was that he couldn't let Yukimura go. "Just… give me a few days with you. Five is enough, five dates with you as friends and I'll prove how serious I am towards you. Just a bit more time. That's all I ask."
Yukimura sighed. "You are truly stubborn to the bone." The bluenette swiftly pulled out his cellphone. "Look, I don't do this to just anyone, so don't think I'm easy. I just have somewhere to be with a friend right now and I have a feeling you won't be giving up anytime soon so… do you have a phone?"
"Y-Yes." Sanada pulled out his own phone from his pocket.
"Alright, I'll give you my number. Call me some other day about these five… date things you proposed if you still insist upon it and maybe we can have a re-match. I'm not promising more than that." said Yukimura in a business-like tone. A burst of happiness was swelling inside of Sanada as Yukimura gave his number to the taller male.
"Thank you so much!" said Sanada, bowing deeply again. "You won't regret it."
Yukimura nodded, looking uncertain about his decision. "Yes, well I do have somewhere to be right now. I'll… see you around I suppose."
Sanada stood there grinning and waving like an idiot at the departing Yukimura.
It was not until much later that night that he realized that he had to think of a way to make Yukimura fall for him. And he only had five days together to do it.
I'm trying out an AU story this time. But that's okay because Alpha Pair exists in all universes.
Sanada's confession in this chapter is based on the way my ex-stalker back in high school confessed to me. o_o Except, I didn't say yes to him, nor did I give him my number.