The Placebo Effect: Prologue

A/N: I'm half proud half embarrassed to say that this is the only fanfic about them here on FFnet. Give it a chance?

Also the italicized words in between the horizontal lines or (( )) are Inui's notes.




It was a normal day in the tennis courts of Seigaku. The sun was shining, the birds were singing, the regulars of the tennis club were running as if their lives depended on it, their coach was watching and a certain bespectacled young man was writing continuously on his notebook while his eyes were forever hidden behind his glasses. It was also of great importance to take note of the large container with the words "Inui Juice" innocently placed near the benches.

Everything seemed to be perfectly in place. Well, of course not everything was the same. The famous Seigaku tennis players were now in high school. Meaning, they're taller, smarter, and stronger and maybe even more mature than they were a few years back. Well, hopefully.

"There's bound to be more data to gather and information to process," thought Inui Sadaharu. He was quite pleased with the fact that their favorite first year teammate was back because he serves as a great source of data.

"Not just him though," he mentally noted as his eyes take in the figure of Ryuzaki Sakuno walking towards their direction. Inui flipped the pages of his notebook until he reached his collected data on her.

Sunny day:

55% Pony tail

20%- French bun

15%-Single braid

10%- A clip on bangs

He smiled in satisfaction for he is correct yet again. He noticed most of the club members except for the regulars shifted their gaze towards her. Well, who could blame them? She has grown up to be quite a beauty. She seemed oblivious to her effect on the male population though.

Her grandmother finally noticed her because one second year student who was holding a basket full of tennis balls tripped causing the balls to scatter all around the court. Ryuzaki Sumire silently sent death glares at her students in an attempt to scare them off. She sighed dramatically when she found out that it wasn't as effective as she thought it will be because some still had the guts to look back at Sakuno.

"I didn't know having a pretty granddaughter could be this tiring," she muttered to herself unaware that Inui heard her. She walked over to Sakuno who was smiling brightly at her.

Inui took a few steps and readied his pen as he frantically wrote about the different reactions of their club members when Sakuno smiled. Some blushed, some had managed to fall flat on the ground, some weren't able to return the ball but the most interesting above them all is still the regulars' reactions. They were passing by at exactly the same time she smiled.


Blushing- Eiji, Oishi and Ryoma

Smiling- Kawamura and Fuji

Unaware/ Unaffected- Kaidoh, Momoshiro and Tezuka

He continued observing the scene until he heard another interesting piece of data. It came from the ichinen trio.

"I really wished we had someone like Ryuzaki as our manager."

"What made you say that, Horio-kun?"

"Well, after my five years of experience in tennis and the opinion of one of my friends from the basketball team. We concluded that having a female manager can improve the team's performance!"

"Do you understand what he's saying, Katsuo?"

"No, not really."

"Just listen! Ryuzaki has been like our manager when we were in middle school but that suddenly changed when we entered high school! She hasn't been coming to practice as often as before and-"

"What she does with her time really isn't our business, Horio-kun."

"That's not it! I'm just saying that having a really cute manager can give some sort of support or inspiration for the team! Just imagine! A cute girl cheering her heart out for you, isn't that great?"

After that the three began daydreaming about what Horio said while Inui can't help but put it all down in his notebook.

"I must verify this," he said and quickly moved away. He was too absorbed in his writing that he literally walked into the bench where cups of his new creation were placed. The liquid spilled on him and instead of trying to clean up the mess before it stained his pants and shoes he chose to save his notebook first. He looked down for a moment calculating how much time he has left before the liquid stains his clothes. A soft voice suddenly interrupted his thoughts.

"Ano, Inui-senpai. You can use this," Sakuno said and handed out her handkerchief. A look of concern graced her features as she gazed back at him.

His face then felt warm all of a sudden that it took a few good seconds before he managed to process what she has said.

"Thank you," he uttered as he took the handkerchief. Their hands slightly touch and the contact made his heart skip a beat , his palms sweat and his stomach twist in an uncomfortable way.

What in the world?

Inui furrowed his brows at the handkerchief while pondering over what the hell is happening to him. He was not aware that he was being observed by the girl in front of him.


No response.


After not receiving a response again, Sakuno placed her hand to his arm in an attempt to gently shake her senpai back to his senses. She wasn't expecting him to act so surprised from her little gesture.



"Ah… Yes?"

"Are you really alright, senpai?"

A few seconds passed before Inui finally came up with an answer.

"Yes, I am. Although I think I might be experiencing some mild form of heatstroke."




A/N: It hasn't been proofread or anything so I'm sorry for some mistakes. So should I continue this or burn it now?