NYYZ Community Christmas Fic Exchange

Title: Find Me

Written for: write2breathe

Special Message: I'm not sure if this is what you had in mind when you picked your prompt, but I hope you like it! Also, I'm really sorry it's late I had some complications, please forgive me.

Pairings/Genres/Ratings: FujixOC, Romance, T

Beta: Koi-chan

A/N: Merry Christmas, everyone! Also, this is my first time writing Seigaku's resident genius, so any feedback for his characterization would be greatly appreciated.

. . .

A commonplace smile graced his lips as they moved on to the next painting. His smile toed the line of a smirk when he noticed that most of the girls were paying more attention to him and his stony faced companion than the art on the walls. He turned his head slightly and glanced at his companion wondering if he-

"Fuji, pay attention," Tezuka said, moving not but his lips. A light chuckle was all Tezuka received in response.

He'd really been hoping to have some semblance of fun on the field trip, but Tezuka had quickly crushed that notion. He'd sent Eiji off with the other group, trusting Oishi to keep a handle on his energetic doubles partner.

Well, since there's no fun in this group, I guess I'll just have to make my own, he thought wickedly. So with Tezuka momentarily busy and the teacher scolding some rowdy classmates, Fuji slipped away from the group and went in search of the other half of his year.

. . .

"It's just past these few shops and on the left when you get to the corner."

"Thank you very much, sir!" Her soft, sweet smile quickly turned into a smirk as she turned away from the kind old man helping her. How trusting, she scoffed making her way down the prescribed path. She'd almost made it too when a voice called out.

"Hey! My wallet!"

She cursed lightly under her breath and ever so slightly picked up her pace. That is until she heard the footsteps running after her.

"Stop her!"

She ducked into the first building she saw and quickly shed her red sweatshirt, depositing it in a trashcan.

Damn it, that was my favorite one too, she thought bitterly, trying to blend into the crowd. A quick glance around told her that she was underdressed, not enough to get questioned, but just enough to get condescending looks from those who were properly dressed.

As she maneuvered through the rooms she made sure to keep one eye on the door at all times. Perhaps she was being paranoid, but she didn't really care as long as she made a clean getaway. After about fifteen minutes though she started letting herself relax; whoever had been chasing her obviously wasn't the sharpest knife in the drawer.

As she scanned the occupants in the room, her eyes feel upon a honey-haired… teen. She couldn't really tell whether or not they were boy or girl, but whoever they were, they were stunning. It was almost as if Persephone had allowed them some of her beaut-

"There you are," said a deep voice behind her. The hand on her shoulder was the only thing that kept her from jumping in fright.

The gears in her began turned as she assessed her situation. A way out. All she needed was a way out.

"Is there something you need, sir?" she turned and asked sweetly. Her smile, set as charmingly as she muster, quickly withered under his harsh glare.

"You're coming with me, thief." He started hauling her to the exit, completely ignoring her insistence that he had the wrong girl. "Be quiet, girl!"

A hand closed around her wrist and the owner said, "Sasaki, there you are."

"I'm sorry, you obviously have the wrong girl," she said, her mouth obviously not on speaking terms with her brain that moment.

"Sasaki, Sensei hasn't noticed your absence yet, but I'm sure when she does she will not be happy."

She looked up and saw the teen that she had been enticed with moments ago.

"Look, boy, you've got the wrong girl. This girl here," the man tightened his grip on the 14 year old, "is a thief. Besides, she doesn't even have her school uniform on."

. . .

Fuji's smile didn't waver. "Yes, sir, that's correct, but our sensei has already scolded her for that."

The older man narrowed his eyes even further at the honey-haired boy. Eventually, he released her, saying, "Che, fine then. I don't have time for games. I guess she's not the right girl."

As the man stalked off, Fuji examined the girl in front of him. He'd been watching her since she'd entered the art gallery. She'd looked flush and was looking steadily at the door. She intrigued him. A quick glance at his group told him that none but Tezuka had noticed his absence so he was still able to move about freely. That was when he felt eyes on him. When he glanced back at the girl, he saw that she'd been apprehended by man whom she didn't seem to know. He saw a flash of fear in her eyes and that's when he knew he had to intervene.

"Thanks for saving me and everything," the girl said, pushing her blue bangs out of her face.

"And why, pray tell, did you need saving?"

The girl thought for a moment before slowly saying, "It's a long story."

Fuji smiled, tilting his head slightly to the side, seemingly innocent. "I have time."

"Well, then, it's kind of personal. Thanks again, but I have to go."

"Wait," he grabbed her wrist as she tried to make a getaway, "no need to run away. I was just being curious. Besides," he internally smirked, "if you really want to leave, I'm sure that man looking for you can't be that far away."

Fuji's smile widened as blue eyes glared up at him.

"Are you threatening me?" she asked through clenched teeth.

"I guess it depends on your choice, now doesn't it?"

He chuckled lightly at the indecision in her eyes.

She turned away from him in a huff, crossed her arms, and walked away. It took her half a minute to turn back around. "Fine, have it your way." She started towards the door. "Come on, let's go."

Fuji sidled up to Tezuka and before sneaking back away, he whispered, "I'm going out for a little while, but I'll be sure to return before the trip's over."

"Hurry up!"

"Relax, I'm coming." He waved cheerfully at Tezuka who was watching him leave.

. . .

To say that she was annoyed would be the understatement of the century. She really did hate having to deal with people. They were stupid and simpleminded and ignorant. Not that she was saying she wasn't, of course. But still.

"Look," she said quietly as they sat underneath a tree in a nearby park, "I'm a thief. But I don't do it because I want to. I do it because… because I have to. If I didn't my little sister would be taken away from me. You see, our mom was placed in a hospital and our dad left shortly after. If I don't steal enough money to pay the bills, the bank will take our house. When that happens, Child Services will take her away from me because I'm not but a child myself."

Fuji stared at her through his closed lids. "That's such an awful tale. Luckily for you though, it's just that. A tale. You're lying through your teeth."

Her eyes narrowed. This was going to be harder than she'd originally thought. "What do you mean? I'm not lying," she replied coyly.

"Well, it's quite obvious that you're lying. Why else would you jump so quickly at the chance to tell a completely stranger your life story?"

She rolled her eyes and shot back, "Most people would just be glad with the information and leave it at that."

"I'm not most people."

"Yeah, I'm starting to notice that."

There was silence. She closed her eyes and took in the world – the invisible caress of the sunlight, the soft whispers of the breeze, and the tickling of the grass beneath her. For just a moment, she felt as that she could relax without the fear of being discov-

"You never answered my question."

Gritting her teeth, she turned towards the boy with closed lids. "What exactly do you want to know? I'm a thief. That's all. There's no tragic backstory, there's no reason why. I just am."

"There's a reason for everything," he said quietly.

"Whatever you say, but I'm going to go now. I've stayed here too long as it is." She rose off the ground and started on her way back to her… to somewhere.

"Bet there's also a reason you never stay anywhere for too long."

"And what on Earth could that possibly be?" She turned, scowling down at him.

"It's probably because you have no roots. You have nothing."

He'd spoke quietly, but the words hit her as if he'd yelled them through a storm. As she watched him walk away she lightly touched the locket hanging from a chain on her neck. And for the first time in a long time, she looked up at the sky and saw the day.

. . .

A disapproving scowl met him when he rejoined his group.

"Where have you been?"

"Out."

"Fuji."

"Yes?" His smile took a turn for the innocent as he turned to his companion.

A pause. "Don't do it again."

After practice that afternoon, Fuji received a note. He'd found it in his tennis bag, and was quite sure it hadn't been there before. It bade him to go back to the park.

When he arrived there, he went back to the tree they'd previously sat under. Lowering himself to the ground, he allowed his mind to wander. Why did she call him back here? At least, he was pretty sure that the note had been from her.

"Hey there."

Fuji heard the greeting, but couldn't find the speaker. A giggle met his ears as he looked up into the branches and saw her watching him.

"Hello. Having fun up there?" His smile softened – becoming more genuine – as she smiled down at him. As she slid off the branch he noted the grace of her movements; they seemed do fluid as if she'd been born for the trees.

"I'm glad you came," she said, breaking the silence.

"I was surprised to come across your note. Previously you seemed to want nothing to do with me."

Her sweet, gentle smile flickered for a moment before she replied, "Make no mistake. I'm not interested in you. I simply need to make sure that you aren't planning on turning me in."

Fuji's smile widened. He found this notion quite… interesting. However, when he voiced this, she merely rolled her eyes.

"Don't be such a man."

"Pardon?"

"Oh, you know, always thinking that you're the best thing in the world and what not. It's not attractive."

A light chuckle escaped his lips. "What an enlightening view of my gender."

She stared at him for a moment, contemplating. "You aren't going to bow out gracefully, are you?"

"I suppose not because I don't plan on bowing out at all."

"Nothing I can do can change your mind?"

"I'm afraid not."

With a groan, she moved to sit next to him. "I'm stuck you then?"

"That does seem to be the case."

She glared at him half-heartedly. "Well then, I guess I'll just have to grin and bear it."

. . .

His hand halted in mid stroke of her hair. "Are you worried?" he asked abruptly.

"About?" She'd opened her eyes to stare at him when he'd stopped his ministrations.

"The consequences."

"Oh, those… I'm not too worried about those. I mean, no matter what we all end up dead in the end."

"I… that's an interesting point of view."

"It's not really a way to think though, is it? It's the truth. We all die in the end. The only thing that's different is the journey."

"I suppose so…"

Finally noticing the setting sun, she rose to her feet. As she stretched her tired limbs, she thought about what would suffice as a parting statement. "Well, alas, Fuji Syuusuke. Our time is up, and I must bid you adieu. For the Lord of Sleep calls for me, and the minutes we share are much too few."

"Must you go now?" He couldn't hide the slight tinge of sadness from seeping into his voice.

"Aye, I must. However, it was quite the experience meeting you."

"The feeling is definitely mutual. I'll see you around…"

"Maybe. I typically never come back to the same place."

"Do I get a name at least? Or anything to work off of?"

She smirked. "No... No I don't think so."

"Oh. I see. So I'll just have to come find you regardless."

Her voice sounded almost wistful as she replied, "Yeah, find me… something like that."

. . .

Upon waking the next morning, Fuji Syuusuke was greeted with the sight on an envelope leaning against his cactus. Inside, there was but one small card. He chuckled to himself as he read her signature. 'Lawful child' huh? Setting the card on his desk, he went on with his usual routine, this time, with a genuine smile on his face.

I think that you're right. It's about time I grew some roots.
I guess I've never stayed anywhere before because
I've never really felt I had a reason to stay.
But I'm sure you can fix that, right?
I'll leave it to you then.
To find me.
-Noriko