A/N: Hello there again everyone! I'm here with my new story idea! First of all, I want to thank everyone who helped me come up with the title for this story. Even though I didn't pick one of yours, your ideas helped make my creative juices flow, and I was able to come up with a title I thought would fit this series as it progresses. So thank you, PurpleStardust, G. Storm59, KuroKokoro13, and leopardstarismyleader for the helpful title suggestions and for my other reviewers for lending me their support during my last major story =). I hope that all of you like the title I was able to come up with.

Now, as I stated in the summary, this is a fan-novelization,which means I will try to stay to the main canon content and characterization as much as possible, but I will be adding 8059 flare because there are just too many hints for these two boys. =) Now because of that, don't expect the romance to start for quite a while (yes, I assure you it will happen eventually). I'm hoping without the romance that I will still be able to make it interesting for you guys. So, for that instance, I'm writing this in 1st person point of view.

Yeah, I don't know what got into to me either (why do I like to torture myself?). I just thought that it would be an interesting way to write this story. That way, I can delve into Yama and Gokus' characters more, and that way, you guys can see how they perceive the scenarios they get themselves in. Hopefully I can get their characterizations right, and hopefully I can actually write in first person. The only time I've used it was when I was writing about myself, so I've never had to explain what was going on around me while in this POV. So if you guys don't like the way this turns out, then I guess I will have to switch to 3rd POV to save myself lol. But hopefully you will find this enjoyable nonetheless.

Another thing you guys should note about this story, is that I'm mixing the anime and the manga together (why, why do I torture myself so?), to the best of my abilities. That way, we can have more 8059 goodness, because some of their hints are only found in the anime or vice versa. I will be following the timeline of the manga though, until the anime filler arcs come into play, since that was Amano-sensei's original intent.

This first chapter will be from Gokudera's point of view, and I will alternate between his and Yama's POV for every other chapter. So Yama's POV will be next chapter. For this chapter, I'm mixing Gokudera's introduction chapter (Chapter 3 of the manga), with the ending portion of the first episode and the entire second episode of the anime. Since I'm doing this from Dera's point of view, we will only see what he sees, so I will be adding in extra scenes to narrate how he gets from Point A to B, and so on. Also, on another note, most of the time, I will be taking what the characters say from the anime and manga word for word, unless I feel that it can be said in a different way.

Now that you know how this story works, I hope you guys can enjoy it!

The only warnings I have for this chapter is Gokudera's indecent swearing. If he says anything offensive, know that I don't mean it; it's just how I perceive Gokudera to think.

Disclaimer: I do not own the Katekyo Hitman Reborn anime and manga, or their characters. Both are owned by Artland and Akira Amano respectively.

Gokudera Hayato

I've never been on a plane before…

…Which is no surprise there, since I'm usually dirt-ass poor. I would have nowhere to go anyway, even if I could get on a plane. But that was an aspect of my life that had drastically changed within the past couple of weeks, due to my profession of choice. I never expected it to take so long for my name to become well known within the underworld of the mafia, but of course, back then I was a stupid snot-nosed kid, who thought he could make it by himself on the streets of Italy by running away from home—a life a luxury—with only the knowledge of piano and making dynamite to get him by. Truth be told, I'm still surprised I'm alive to this day.

I was so naïve back then. Nothing more than a stupid eight-year-old, silver-haired, quarter-breed that ran around the streets of Italy, trying to find a different mafia family to take him in. There was no way in hell I was going to inherit my father's name, and take over his mafia syndicate. That lying, cheating, murderous monster could go and fucking die for all I cared! Hell, I'd probably even rejoice if I ever heard my old man bit the dust! I can only hope that the fucker gets taken out in some horribly painful way. That's not too farfetched to think about, considering he lives the life of a mafia man.

After finding out (rather brutally might I add), that I would never be accepted into another mafia family with my lack luster skills and quarter-bred blood, I ended up living off the streets; doing odd jobs here and there to get myself by. Eventually, Dr. Shamal took pity on me. He knew all about what I was doing, mainly because he was the only person I stayed in contact with from the mansion. So, in the end, the stupid pervert gave me his old apartment to live in. It was a roof over my head, but I was still on my own for food and other things. While I was struggling just to survive, I saved up my money little by little to buy the supplies I needed for my bombs. I'd be damned if I didn't at least get some recognition from the mafia world! I was born a mafia man's son, and I would die that way, despite how much I actually disowned my own father for bringing a bastard child like me into the world.

With major amounts of practice, and taking occasional assassination and decoy jobs (my first assassination at the age of ten still haunts me to this day), the name, "Smokin' Bomb Hayato", finally reached the ears of all the big mafia don's within Italy, after four years of being on the streets. Even then though, no Family wanted to invite me into their midst. They would only ask for my services.

That was my life until I turned thirteen.

After five years of hard living, and finally hitting puberty when I was half way into my twelfth year (it was hard for your hits to take you seriously when your voice was cracking like a chipmunk on helium that was recovering from a bad case of laryngitis. Which is probably what I got for being a chronic smoker for four and a half years), one of the most prestigious mafia families, the Vongola, took pity on me. The Ninth himself, offered a place for me to stay near the outskirts of the Vongola headquarters (since I wasn't really allowed into their Family), and asked if I could be one of his hit-men for hire that would only work for him. Even though I wasn't officially accepted into the Family, I now had a place to call my own and the strongest mafia family in the world to try and impress. I promised myself that I would work hard, so that they would consider making me an official member.

And that's how I found myself on a plane, riding first class, no less, due to my Vongola connections. I had received a call from the famous Reborn a couple days ago. He was one of the Vongola Ninth's most trusted hit-men! It came as a surprise to me when I heard his voice over the phone though. It was so squeaky and nasally; like a little baby's! But I didn't question it too much. The man was probably just taking precautions and using a voice modifier. No matter what his voice sounded like, I knew for a fact that the man was a dangerous killer, and should be taken seriously. Nonetheless, Reborn-san had contacted me, and asked me to fly to Japan to test out the next candidate for the Vongola Tenth position. He promised that I would become the next head of the Vongola if I defeated the last known person of the Vongola First's bloodline.

This was my big shot, my one chance to prove myself to the Family that almost accepted me. I would find a place for myself to belong to, even if it killed me.

I arrived in Namimori, Japan a little before noon on a school day. Truth be told, Reborn-san hadn't stated when I should actually arrive in Namimori, but he had offered to make the arrangements for my transfer to the public middle school, and a place for me to stay that was within my budget (the Ninth paid me a decent wage for being one of his personal hitmen). Seeing as I had to get rid of my luggage before I could scope out my target (my luggage only consisting of a couple suitcases of clothing and other essentials, since Reborn-san had mentioned that the apartment I was assigned to came completely furnished), I took a bus to find my new apartment, following the directions Reborn-san had sent me with his information packet (photos of the Vongola Tenth candidate included).

The apartment, once I had found it, wasn't too bad, despite the landlord looking like a money-grubbing whore. It was a little cheap looking, but I didn't mind, since I'd lived in much worse conditions. The place had a living room, separate kitchen, bathroom, and a single bedroom. It came with a cheap leather couch, decent TV, its own washer and dryer, a stove, cupboards, counters, a fridge, a small kitchen table with chairs, sinks, a duel shower/tub, and a single bed. Plus it had heat and running water. What more could a guy really ask for? Sure, I would have to buy my own food, dishes, and other utensils, but I wasn't going to get too cozy. I wouldn't be staying here for long, hopefully.

After putting my stuff away, I walked to my next destination (the middle school wasn't too far away from my apartment). While I walked, I couldn't help but wonder why Reborn-san had given me an apartment to stay in instead of some hotel room. It seemed a little suspicious, like he was expecting me to stay in Japan longer than I necessarily had to. I only had to challenge the Tenth candidate, right? Was he so tough that Reborn-san thought that I wouldn't be able to stand up to him, and that I would have to keep on trying?

…Or maybe he knew that the candidate was going to defeat me. And after the Ninth heard about it through Reborn-san's report, the professional hitman knew that the Ninth would more than likely relieve me from my duties. Which meant that the possibility that I would be able to head back to Italy of my own accord would be practically impossible, and that I would have to live out the rest of my days in the country that made up a quarter of my blood, in shame. Because of that, I had packed most of my clothes as a precaution.

Hmmm, maybe if I was forced to stay here, I could join the Yakuza?

Letting out a sigh at the thought of being disowned by the most prestigious mafia family in the world (who was I kidding? Would any crime syndicate welcome me, knowing that the Vongola didn't even want me?), I made my way to the public Namimori Middle School. With my head now swimming with the possibility of failure, I planned on checking out my target to get a good idea of his abilities before I would contact Reborn-san about challenging him.

When I arrived at the school, it seemed that afternoon break was in progress (what's with these Japanese kids getting so many breaks during school? Was it because of the rigorous teaching methods they had to go through?). I was quick to notice that a bunch of students seemed to be gathered inside of what looked to be a gymnasium (it was separated from the main building, and had a domed shape to it). Of course, I only noticed this because the students had left the double doors to the gym slightly ajar. Not to mention that there was a lot of commotion coming from inside the building.

Taking a quick glance at the picture in my hand, memorizing every detail of my target, I stuffed it back into my pocket, and slunk along the shadows of the building, hiding myself from view as I peeked in between the doors to see what was going on inside the gym.

From what I could gather, there was supposed to be a kendo fight going on, or something, even though only one of the students, who looked like an eighth grader with spiky black hair, was dressed for the part. That's when I realized that the scrawny seventh grader he was going against (the one wearing his school uniform), was my target. I could only stare on with slight puzzlement as the eighth grader said something about competing with my target, and that the winner would win the heart of some girl. I didn't really give a shit about that; I just wanted to see my target's fighting prowess. What was the candidate for the Tenth Generation capable of?

To my utter shock and disgust, my target was a complete pussy.

No fucking joke. The kendo kid was trying to hit my target with his wooden sword, and my target was just running around and screaming like a pansy. Are you fucking kidding me? This no-good kid had the Primo's blood in him? How was that even possible?

Just when I thought that my victory against this kid was sure to be in the bag, I witnessed the kid fall flat onto his back, his eyes staring openly up towards the ceiling in a sightless manner. Now what the hell just happened? Did he pass out from fright or something? I'm certain the eighth grade jack-ass hadn't hit him.

Apparently, I wasn't the only one confused by this turn of events. Everyone in the gymnasium, including my target's opponent, could only stare on in shock, wondering what had come over the pussy Vongola Tenth candidate. To my utter surprise, a strange glow overcame my target then as he stood abruptly to his feet, the very motion tearing the clothes he was wearing to complete shreds. The scene was almost reminiscent of those macho body builders that ripped their clothes just by flexing their muscles, except in this case there wasn't any muscle flexing going on. It was more like his clothes just exploded off his body! So there my target stood in the middle of the gymnasium, growling like an animal, and screaming about defeating his opponent while being clad only in his boxers.

…Yeah, I have no words to describe what I'm feeling at this moment.

I could only stare on in astonishment as I watched my target break his opponent's wooden sword with his face, jumping onto the poor guy and ripping out his hair like a savage animal on a mission. The pompous eighth grader's friend sent up the red flag then to show that my target had won the match, completely fearful of what my unpredictable target would do next.

"So that's the Vongola's Tenth Generation candidate, Sawada Tsunayoshi." I unconsciously muttered out in Japanese, my voice serious and contemplative as I thought over everything that I had just witnessed. Maybe this kid had some hidden potential?

I would have to monitor him more closely.

Later that night as I sat in my new apartment, sifting through the channels on my TV with a magazine of Japanese mythical creatures lying open beside me, I thought over my objectives for tomorrow. I had gotten in contact with the school after my observation of Sawada, and had told them that I would be attending classes the following morning at eight. Thankfully, the school already had my paperwork thanks to Reborn-san. Speaking of him, I had no way of contacting the mysterious, weird sounding man; the number he called me from being disconnected when I tried to call him back on my cell phone.

Letting my thoughts towards my superior go for the moment, I thought over the mission that was still set before me. I would have to complete it, even if I couldn't get in contact with Reborn-san to tell him so. If I defeated Sawada Tsunayoshi tomorrow, I would become the next candidate for the Vongola Tenth position and, truth be told, I wasn't particularly psyched about the idea. I never liked the idea of being my own mafia boss, to follow in my father's footsteps. The very thought of being compared to my fucked-up old man was too much for my stomach to handle. The feeling I got just thinking about it actually reminded me of how my stomach would react after I ate my sister's—no, my half-sister's—cooking. I'm glad I didn't see that crazy bitch during the five years I was on the streets. If I did (she had certainly tried to get in contact with me, but was always deterred by Dr. Shamal. The perverted bastard was useful sometimes), I probably would have died from severe stomach cramps just from seeing her face alone.

Still, I didn't like the idea that if I defeated Sawada, I would become the next candidate. Actually, the reason why I had agreed to do this job in the first place was to impress Reborn-san and the Vongola Ninth. The other reason as to why I agreed to this job was because I had heard that my target was a boy the same age as me. Once I heard that, I felt like I needed to evaluate the other boy's skills; to test him as an equal and see if he had the potential to be the boss of the strongest mafia syndicate in the world. This world that we lived in was ruthless, and only the strong were able to survive. If I ended up winning tomorrow, the other's death would be quick and painless (hopefully…it really depended on if the scrawny kid stayed still when my dynamite hit him). I would be doing the other a favor, really. The mafia was known for their brutal ways of killing their enemies.

And if I lost tomorrow…if I ended up dying…well…I guess that would put me out of my own misery. It was sad to dwell on, but when I thought about it more, it actually didn't sound like a bad idea.

I glared uninterestedly into the crowd of students within class 1-C. I wasn't looking too forward to being in a public school setting when I knew that I was leagues above these people's intelligence. But this was where my target was, so this was where I had to be. And really, I didn't know how long I was going to be here anyway. So, I guess that I shouldn't be so irritated by it, but it didn't help when everyone was gawking at me like the Loch Ness Monster! Yes, I have silver hair. Yes, I'm foreign. Get the fuck over it! I hate being around people. I knew from personal experience that I couldn't trust anyone, not even my literal or figurative 'Family'. I knew that anyone I met would only use me in the end, and not give two shits about me when they were done. Such was the life of a Mafioso.

Breaking out of my thoughts, I heard my new homeroom teacher announce who I was to the class, and state that I had been studying overseas in Italy. I was a little surprised at that notion; the teacher making it sound like I was currently from Japan, and that I was coming back home. In the end though, I didn't really care. I had a feeling that Reborn-san had something to do with my teacher's information on me, but it couldn't be helped if I had a Japanese name when I'm from Italy. The reason for my Japanese name was because I had changed my original name to what my mother would have preferred to call me. Shamal had gotten ahold of a copy of my birth certificate one day, and had given it to me for future use. That's when I found out that I had two separate names. My mother had originally named me before she handed me over to my father, who changed my name to an Italian one in order to hide the secret that I was a bastard child. Since I was estranging myself from my father's family, I thought it would only be right to cut whatever ties I still had connected to him. So that's how I ended up changing my name back to the one my mother gave me: Gokudera Hayato (Shamal helping me (begrudgingly) with the legal process). So really, in the end, I didn't mind the fact that Reborn-san had reported to the school faculty that I was originally from Japan. I would rather consider myself at home in my mother's homeland than my father's any day.

As all this was going through my head, and as I heard the gasps of awe coming from my retarded classmates, I scanned the room for my designated target. Sure enough, there in the fifth row by the window, fourth desk down from the front was Sawada Tsunayoshi, his eyebrows peeking up with interest as he looked at me.

That is, until he quickly glanced to his left and his eyes fell upon a decent looking girl (she was nice looking, but she looked like a complete air-head), with golden-brown hair, who, of course, was looking at me with interest like the rest of the class. My target looked horror-struck for a second before he glanced back at me, a peculiar expression on his face.

Of course, I could tell that he didn't like the attention I was getting and, frankly, I didn't either. But if that pussy was going to give me attitude, like hell I wasn't going to give it back! I don't care if I kind of empathized with the kid for being part of the mafia at such a young age like I was! If he couldn't handle the pissed-off glare I was going to send his way, then that was too damn bad!

Sure enough, the little runt looked scared out of his mind after I sent him one of my most icy glares. That just pissed me off all the more. Where the hell was the guy's spunk from yesterday when he was ripping the hair off of his senpai's head? Che! Maybe, for all I know, the way he was acting yesterday was a spur of the moment thing that only happened because he was around that air-headed girl he seemed to like. She was probably the one he was fighting over yesterday.

Well, I guess I had to show this gutless bastard who was boss around here. Maybe my theory was wrong, and he would react the same way I saw him in the gym. With that thought in mind, I ignored the teacher, who was trying to tell me where my seat was, and made my way over to my target.

The kid with the unruly, spiky-brown hair didn't know what was coming. As soon as I stopped in front of his desk, he hesitantly peered up at me, the fear on his face never disappearing. I just bowed my head, my bangs undoubtedly covering most of my face from view (I learned that this tactic usually scared my targets more), and with a scowl, I quickly brought up my leg and kicked my target's desk over. The stupid runt was so startled by this that he actually tipped over with the desk too (it probably didn't help that he was leaning on the desk before I kicked it either). With that deed done, I made my way to the empty seat the teacher had been trying to direct me towards earlier, his voice wavering in uncertainty while the voices of my classmates whispered around me. Some of them sounded truly frightened by my previous actions, while others (mainly the girls, I noted) squealed in their most annoying voices, talking about how cool and delinquent-like I was. Hell, I was pretty sure I heard them mentioning something about starting a fan-club!

It was official, Japanese girls were fucking insane (they were probably all stalkers too).

Out of all the strange, fearful, and awe-inspired looks I was receiving though, there was one that took me slightly off guard. I only glanced in his direction for a moment, giving the stupid-looking tall kid with black, spiky-hair one of my standoffish glares before I averted my eyes back towards the direction of Sawada, who was currently resituating his desk. The black-haired kid, who was sitting two seats in front of me (the seat between us conveniently being unoccupied that day), was staring at me with a bored expression on his face. To me, it looked like the dumbass had just woken up from a nap. But even with his bored expression and his chin resting in the palm of his hand, his elbow leaning upon his desk, his eyes were slightly calculating. I could tell from that look that he was wondering why I had acted out towards Sawada, even though I was the new transfer student and shouldn't of had a grudge against anyone as of yet.

…Or maybe I'm just overanalyzing the stupid guy who was staring at me strangely, because no one else was looking at me that way! And what pissed me off even more was when I decided to glare back at him again, silently telling him to piss-the-fuck-off and to stop staring at me, his expression didn't even falter. Although his eyes did narrow upon receiving my glare, it wasn't out of animosity; it was out of…pity? I couldn't actually tell, but that was the closest emotion I could come up with to describe the look I was getting then. Why the fuck was this kid pitying me? He didn't even know me?

Feeling indescribable rage fill me in that moment, I averted my gaze away from the infuriating dumbass in front of me, my murderous glare instead falling upon Sawada Tsunayoshi. The smaller teen squeaked in fear as he caught my look and quickly turned back around in his seat with his posture hunched over, stiff upon his desk.

Screw what I said before! I couldn't wait to get out of this place! All I had to do was beat my wimpy-ass target at the end of the day, and then I could get on with my life.

When lunch break rolled around, I stayed in my seat, watching Sawada like a hawk to see what he would do next. Apparently, the scrawny kid was too afraid to move, lest I jump him or something (I might, since the kid was really starting to piss me off). But before I, or even Sawada, could decide on our next course of action, a group of male students (including the infuriating tan kid with black-hair from before), approached Sawada's desk.

As I eased-dropped from the back of the room, I overheard the group talking about a volleyball tournament being held in the gym during afternoon break, and that, apparently, Sawada was a backup player for them, since their other members were all sick.

…Well, that definitely sounded suspicious. Maybe Reborn-san had something to do with that also.

Anyways, I then overheard Sawada comment on how the infuriatingly tall kid (who had a very annoying voice, might I add), who's name I found out to be Yamamoto (Che! What a boring common name! I bet his first name was just as boring, like Takeshi, or something), was playing on the team even though he was already on the baseball team.

This Yamamoto guy really wasn't winning anymore points with me after I heard that, especially when the other guys on the team commented that Yamamoto was good at a bunch of different sports. So this guy was one of those super annoying, popular jock types. That was just fucking great. Hopefully I could avoid him like the plague.

But as I witnessed Sawada get up and leave with the group of volleyball players (he probably thought that there was safety in numbers), another idea came to my mind. This was the perfect opportunity to see if the power that my target had showed yesterday was a fluke or not.

And what better way to observe him, then being on the same volleyball team?

Upon entering the locker room during afternoon break, I was quick to notice that Sawada wasn't there. Maybe he hadn't arrived yet, or maybe he was already done getting dressed?

"Wow, Sawada was sure in a rush to get out of here." I heard one of Sawada's teammates say. He was one of the guys that had approached my target in the classroom earlier, and he looked rather geeky in my opinion. Should this guy even be on the team?

"Haha, well you know Tsuna." Yamamoto laughed right next to him as he changed his shirt (I could feel a headache coming on when I heard his laugh. Holy shit, this guy annoyed me), "He never likes changing around other people, so he usually dresses as fast as he can."

…Wow. My target was really becoming more pathetic and wimpy as the day went on. His strength yesterday must have been a fluke. But still, I couldn't quell the 'what if?' feeling that was stirring in the back of my mind, so I decided to take my next course of action.

Clearing my throat to gain the other players' attention, I made my way over to them, my usual scowl on my face.

"So…what does a guy have to do to get on a team for the tournament?" I asked gruffly. I didn't want to seem too polite after all. There was no way in hell I was going to get friendly with these losers.

My potential 'teammates' glanced between each other for a second, surprise evident on their faces (Yes, I can talk you fucking retards! It's not that much of a surprise!). Eventually, much to my undying chagrin, Yamamoto seemed to be the unannounced spokesmen for the team, because he was the one that answered my question.

"Haha, well, the team is already full. But maybe you can try out for another tournament when another one comes along?" The idiot explained with the most stupid, friendly smile on his face. "We'd be glad to have you!"

I could feel my eyebrow twitch at the overly friendly tone to his voice (I'm not your friend, nor would I like to be one of them, you fuck-tard!). There was no way in hell that I was going to let this guy brush me off!

"Che! I don't give a shit about your sports tournaments, but I want to be in this one!" I announced, raising my voice in my irritation. "So either you make room for me to be on the team, or I'll make room myself."

I could see that Yamamoto was taken aback by my response, especially when I poked my finger into his chest for added emphasis. Instead of getting angry at the obvious threat I had made though, the idiot just laughed it off, his previous expression washing away like it had never been there.

"Haha, there's no need to get violent now." The black-haired numbskull laughed out as he brought his hands up in a placating manner. "I can understand that you're new, and that you want to fit in right away, but being pushy never solves anything."

…What the fuck?

My internal hatred for this jocky prick was reaching an all-time level. I'm actually surprised I didn't whip out my dynamite and blow the fucker to smithereens then, but I knew that I wouldn't be able to personally observe Sawada in action if I killed off one of his teammates. I tried to calm down my seething anger to a simmer as I found the words to finally respond to him.

"I'm not doing this because I want to fucking fit in with you retards!" I shouted out in rage (so much for keeping control of my anger). "I'm doing this for my own reasons, so put me on the team!"

And with that, I gave the weakest of the players (I had sniffed out the weakest link earlier when I had entered the locker room), my deadliest glare. The aforementioned nerdy player squeaked in fear, and looked about ready to piss his pants when our eyes met. It wasn't too soon after that, that the nerdy kid got the gist of what I was implying, and apologized to the team before changing back into his school uniform and rushing out the door in record time.

For the first time ever, I saw Yamamoto frown a bit towards my actions. I considered that a success, and mentally patted myself on the back for being able to take away that stupid smile he always seemed to wear. The frown wasn't on there for long though, since it was replaced by his usually friendly persona a moment later (what the fuck was wrong with this guy? Why wasn't he getting angry?). A nervous chuckle escaped Yamamoto's mouth then as he rubbed the back of his head.

"Well, I guess you can be on the team then, haha!" The smiling teen proclaimed, his happy and cheerful image never waning.

I just grunted in response, going over to my newly assigned locker in the process to change into my new gym clothes (which was a white t-shirt with blue sweatpants). As I was changing, the other players quickly took their leave, all except for one. And to my great luck, that one person so happened to be Yamamoto, the new bane of my existence. He just watched me get dressed (ok, this guy was starting to creep me the fuck out now), a semi-critical glint in his eyes as he crossed his arms, and leaned back against his locker.

Noticing the other's thoughtful expression, I decided to voice my own thoughts. I didn't need the idiot to pass out from using his brain too much. That would only delay the tournament and my observation of Sawada.

"What the fuck are you looking at, freak?" I exclaimed with annoyance as I finished changing, and glared at him.

The other didn't respond right away (why wasn't he reacting like a normal person to my attitude? Gah!), he just looked directly at me as if he could see something that I couldn't. What the fuck? Was this guy trying to peer into my soul, or something?

"I'm just wondering," Yamamoto finally replied with a light air to his voice as he tried to make it friendlier (maybe I was affecting him more than I had previously thought?). "Are you only trying to be on the team because you want to pick on Tsuna some more?"

Well I definitely didn't expect that. Who the fuck was he; the team's mother?

"Che! It's none of your business why I'm on the team!" I shouted vehemently. The guy had no right to get into my business.

To my utmost irritation, the idiot only laughed, like he expected that answer.

"Sorry if my question upset you." Yamamoto apologized, his tone accepting. "It's just that this tournament is supposed to be fun for everyone. I didn't want any animosity on the team to upset it."

Wow, so the idiot actually knew some big words. I wonder if it hurt to come up with them?

Not deeming the conversation worthy enough to continue, I just grunted and left the locker room, heading toward the gymnasium. I didn't give two shits about what Yamamoto thought of me, or my intentions. The only thing I was interested in was watching Sawada play. Of course, I would participate also, since I didn't want people to think that I was useless, like some of the other students here. But my number one priority was to gauge my target's strength, and challenge him to the candidacy title.

And I planned on doing just that.

So this volleyball tournament everyone was going on about just so happened to be a tournament for only the first year students; the teams being made up of representatives from each class. And since Namimori Middle School was a relatively small public school, that meant that only three teams could participate…yeah, some fucking tournament. Of course, I shouldn't have expected anything bigger, since the tournament was being held during afternoon break, but let's just say that I was pretty pissed off when I learned that my team, Class C, would only play the winners after the first two classes played against each other. Because of that, I had to wait with my annoying teammates (Yamamoto trying to strike up conversation with me the wholefuckingtime!), and wait even longer to see if my target had any hidden potential.

When it was finally time for my team to go against the previous winners, to say I was ready to spike the ball in someone's face (anyone in particular was fine by me, but I mainly wanted to hit Yamamoto), would have been an understatement. That feeling only intensified as the game started, and the first serve from the opposite team was sent straight towards Sawada's position on the left-hand corner of the court. The little wimp just stood there, staring at the ball with a frightened look on his face, frozen in fear, even after the rest of our teammates yelled at him to hit it.

I could feel my irritation towards my target's wussy attitude increase then, and that irritation only skyrocketed ten-fold when I saw Yamamoto, who was positioned right next to Sawada as the back center, jump forward in a desperate attempt to hit the ball back. As the ball hit the middle of his arm, Yamamoto tumbled forward from the momentum and the ball flew straight over the net and into the other team's court; the other players too shocked by the last minute save to do anything. With our team now in the possession of a single point, Yamamoto came out of his roll, and stood back on his feet to the cheering of his teammates and the crowd. The freakishly tall idiot just laughed and waved to his adoring fans, all the while saying, 'Thank you, thank you.', like he was some sort of celebrity with an air of modesty.

Well, I definitely didn't buy that modesty shit! It was obvious that this guy was one of those typical stupid, glory hogging, popular jock types. His stupidly friendly disposition and air of innocence wasn't going to win me over like the rest of the retarded students around here, especially if he was going to deter my job of observing my target. How the hell was I supposed to see if the kid had some hidden talent, if Mr. Glory Hound over there was going to keep stealing his hits?

...Even if it was a pretty good save…and we got a point because of it….and since Sawada probably wasn't going to hit the ball anyway—Yamamoto was still in the way, damn it!

As the game continued on, the outlook didn't get much better for our team. For one, the other team seemed to like hitting the ball in Sawada's direction. It was here that I remembered the information on Sawada that Reborn-san had given me, about why the whole school had given him the name, 'No-Good-Tsuna'. My target only continued to prove the reason he had that name as a high volley came our way. Since Sawada was now stationed as a center by the net, his teammates encouraged him to hit the ball. I could see my target stiffen, not out of fright, but determination this time as he jumped as high as he could in order to spike the oncoming object.

…Only for his hand to completely miss it, and for the ball to smack him right in the face instead.

I could only stare down at Sawada then as he lay flat on the floor, the pattern of a volleyball imprinted into his face. The crowd sighed at the pathetic attempt, and so did my teammates as we crowded around Sawada; partly to see if he was okay (I sure wasn't), and partly to grumble for missing an easy target.

"What a mess." I commented out loud, the irritation that I felt was so high at that point that I couldn't stop myself from verbalizing my inner thoughts. A part of me almost snapped after that when I heard Yamamoto come up beside me and encourage Sawada.

"Don't mind, don't mind. Let's keep going." Yamamoto consoled kindly, as he reached out to help my target stand back on his feet, Sawada looking a little less frustrated with himself at the friendly gesture.

Wow…Yamamoto actually was the mom of the team. It's because of overly nice retards like him that players like Sawada got on the team in the first place, and continued to stay on just because people like Yamamoto kept on encouraging them with false hope that they would get better if they kept on trying. This wasn't a fucking anime! Does anyone on this team have a sense of reality?

Apparently not, since they continued to let Sawada play, even if kicking him off the team and dragging a random bystander from the audience to replace him would have probably worked better for us in the end. Sawada couldn't play. At. All. He would always just miss volleying the ball before it would hit the ground (hell, he would actually run into the ball when it bounced off the ground, and it would always hit him in the stomach), he missed spiking the ball whenever he was at the front (the volleyball either hitting him in the face, or he would just completely misjudge where the ball was flying, and would end up missing it by inches), and he even sucked at serving. Sawada would miss the serve every time, and the ball would always land on his face (if there was one thing I could give Sawada credit for, it was for the fact that his bones must be made of steel. If they weren't, he'd have a broken nose by now). His serving was so bad though that the referee automatically gave the opposite team the ball whenever Sawada had to serve. He knew that nothing would come from it anyway, and it would only be a waste of time.

And that's how our team finished off our first set with the opposite team, our score 21 to 3 (I won one of those points…the other two were won by Yamamoto). Hating losing as much as the next guy, I let the other teammates (minus Yamamoto of course), yell at Sawada for his complete incompetency when it came to hitting a ball. I then heard Sawada come up with some excuse that he twisted his leg with his match against that upperclassman he fought against yesterday, and that he wasn't playing well because of that. Personally, I called bullshit on that, since it seemed he faired very well against the guy—well, the second part of the match anyway. Because of that, I could only feel confusion turn within me. Sawada had been so different yesterday with his match against the upperclassmen. Was it true then that he was only acting that way in order to defend that girl?

Before I could think on that particular thought much longer, I heard the rest of my teammates buy Sawada's excuse. They allowed him to skip the rest of the match in order to go to the nurse's office. I was disgusted by the look of relief on Sawada's face as he turned around to ditch us. I knew he hadn't twisted his leg. He hadn't even shown the signs of a limp! Sawada was such a fucking coward! There was no way I was going to allow a guy like him to take over the Vongola!

To my surprise though, I caught a guilty expression on Sawada's face as he took in the sight of our battered teammates, noting the various bandages and band-aids adorning their bodies as they tried to cool down from their previous work out with towels and cups of water. From there, I saw a look of determination make its way onto my target's face as he made his way back to the team, apparently intent on staying despite his 'injured' leg. Sawada was met with accepting nods from the team, but I could only scowl at him, because I didn't really know how to react in that moment. I guess I had to give the guy props for not ditching us and giving up on the situation, but that didn't change the fact that Sawada would only continue to be a weakness for the team. Just because his attitude had changed, didn't mean that his skill had as well.

Before I could think on the situation more, I saw Sawada fall backwards out of the corner of my eye. Startled by his sudden descent, I quickly turned around and stared at his fallen form, the smaller boy eying his legs with an unbelieving expression. What? Did Sawada's legs just decide to quit on him because they hated being attached to such a pathetic person?

Hearing my other teammates question if Sawada was alright, I saw the smaller kid just nod his head and stand back up with his brow furrowed thoughtfully. I didn't care at that point and just decided to reposition myself on the court, since the second set was starting. As Sawada took his place as the front center again, and I took mine as the back center, I could feel my blood begin to boil as Yamamoto took a position to my right. When the fuck could I get away from this annoyance?

The second set started with the opposite team in possession of the ball. As they served it, they aimed for Sawada's position like they usually did, the other team fully exploiting our weakness. I could hear Yamamoto shouting at Sawada about the ball heading his way, but I honestly didn't believe that anything would change; Sawada would definitely end up missing anyway.

To my complete and utter astonishment, when Sawada prepared himself, and jumped up to meet he volleyball head on, the smaller kid jumped so high that his feet went up past the net! I could only stare in complete shock, aware that Yamamoto was gaping right beside me as he exclaimed his surprise too. How the hell could Sawada jump so freaking high?

The craziness didn't end there.

Just as Sawada jumped up above the net, the volleyball made contact directly with the smaller boy's private parts. I winced at the sight, imagining the pain that my target was going through as the ball re-entered the other team's court. The opposite team was so surprised by the literal cock block that they couldn't save themselves from losing a point. As we gained our fourth point due to shock value, I could only watch on in amazement as Sawada jumped around, holding his crotch in pain. How the hell was that kid still standing? Was this kid insane? Who blocked a fast moving volleyball with their groin for fuck's sake? The only thing I could come up with was that Sawada's mind was being poisoned by jock mentality. Didn't jocks always do stupid, desperate things just to get points for the sake of winning games?

I continued to stare on as the rest of my teammates congratulated Sawada on his awesome save, wondering if my target's mind had been poisoned by their jock mindset, or if he actually had some hidden potential, like he had shown yesterday. Considering that the game was still far from over, I decided to continue with my observations as I heard Yamamoto urging the team on, encouraging them that they could, 'Turn the tide!'.

And turn the tide we did.

Sawada's insane save seemed to have sparked inspiration into the rest of the team, because from then onwards, everyone worked to the best of their ability; even Sawada! For the rest of the game, Sawada was able to jump high above the net, and he even blocked another serve with his crotch (Ok, this kid was officially insane! Who honestly and willingly did that? Didn't this loser want to have kids in the future?). Despite that, our team made an amazing comeback, and we ended up winning the match (most of our points, irritatingly enough, being won by Yamamoto. I'm now choosing to completely wipe this piece of insight from my memory).

As the crowd of students rejoiced at our complete comeback, I witnessed the rest of my team congratulate Sawada for helping them, their eyes filled with newfound awe for the insane kid who had probably made himself infertile for the sake of winning a seventh grade volleyball tournament. Surely, Sawada would go down in history as the greatest person who had ever graced the school.

Of course, I meant all of that sarcastically as I watched on from a distance. Sawada was rubbing the back of his head in embarrassment, but beaming at the positive attention he was getting, and Yamamoto was hanging off of his shoulder like they were the best of friends. The sight truly sickened me because I just couldn't figure Sawada out. Did he just act like a loser so that his hidden potential would make a more powerful impact on his fellow classmates? Or was my target really a no-good loser with remarkable luck when he was in a pinch? Either case, with the knowledge that I had gained from the day, I knew for a fact that someone like Sawada wasn't cut out for the mafia. He was too wimpy looking, and had severe lackluster skills that weren't too reliable. Hell, even a quarter-bred, silver-haired, piano playing outsider like me could be a better candidate for the Tenth Vongola Boss position! I certainly had more potential than this fool!

It was here that I decided to take Reborn-san's request seriously. Even though I didn't really want to be a mafia boss, there was no way a wimp like Sawada was going to be able to live up to the Vongola name. It was time that I put this kid out of the misery that was sure to find him if he continued down this path.

As I turned around, seeing the hordes of excited students leaving the gymnasium, and hearing my ex-teammates head towards the locker room behind me to clean up, I couldn't help but voice what was on my mind as I noticed Sawada lagging behind the others. I could feel the coward's questioning eyes on me.

"It's not over. I won't accept it." I growled out menacingly within ear shot of Sawada. It was time that I made him believe that I was a threat to him. I just wanted to finish Reborn-san's request, and continue on with my life.

"I'm the one that's worthy of becoming the Tenth!"

Stating that last sentence a little louder, just in case that my target hadn't heard my first two statements; I wasn't surprised when I heard a shocked gasp come from behind me.

"Huh? The Tenth?" I heard Sawada ask in bewilderment.

I turned around to glare heatedly at him and called Sawada out, demanding that he meet me behind the gymnasium after school, and that I would know if he ran away. Hoping that he took my threat seriously (I really didn't feel like tracking the wuss down and finishing him off), I headed back to the locker room to clean up and change. Thankfully, the other members of the volleyball team had already changed during my talk with Sawada, so I had the showers to myself (Sawada must have been too terrified to come in after me). When I was done changing, I headed back towards class. It would be a couple hours until the end of school, and until the time when the fate of my future, and Sawada's, would be decided.

The end of the school day finally approached as I watched on from my position behind the gymnasium while hordes of middle-school students filed out of the school, or went to their club activities. I waited almost impatiently for Sawada to show up, my body unable to be calmed by the lit cigarette I currently had in my mouth. This only made my mood even worse than what it already was. I really hoped that Sawada didn't bail on me. I just wanted to get this whole scenario done and over with.

Thankfully, I didn't have to wait too long as Sawada came running out of the school, panting like crazy. As I watched him approach, I saw him glance over his shoulder very quickly. Was he being chased by someone?

"That was close. I could've been beaten to death..." Sawada panted out in a terrified voice, still glancing behind himself. Apparently, I was correct with assuming that someone wanted to beat him up. Hell, even I wanted to beat this kid up, so it wasn't too hard to imagine.

Unable to stand how pathetic my target continued to be, I couldn't restrain the comment at the tip of my tongue.

"Your wussiness is an eyeful." I growled out in irritation as I took a quick drag from my cigarette.

Sawada jumped in shock at the sound of my voice, his head quickly swiveling around to face me.

"Ah! The transfer student!" He exclaimed with fear before he lowered his voice meekly, warily glancing my way. "So, um, w-why did you want to meet me here?"

I could tell from how his voice wavered that he already had an idea as to why we were in a secluded place away from prying eyes. Something told me that he was used to scenarios like this, but not actually used to confronting them.

I faced away from the kid then, bowing my head as I thought over how I was going to go about my next move.

"If a pinprick like you becomes the Tenth, the Vongola Family is finished," I explained with cold morbidity.

"Huh?" Sawada gasped in surprise, his voice wavering with wonder. "How do you know about the Family? You said something like that in the gym too…but I wasn't sure if I heard right…"

Pissed off by my targets stupid questions (wasn't it obvious that the only reason I knew about the Vongola was because I was part of the mafia?), I brought my head back up and turned around to glare at him, my eyes burning with annoyance and hatred.

"I fucking told you already that I wouldn't accept you! Or are you too stupid to comprehend what I just said?"

Sawada squeaked in fright and backed away as if my heated glare had burned him.

"W-What are you saying all of a sudden?"

Seeing as it would be pointless to explain to him again, I continued with the speech that I had prepared for this moment.

"I've been watching you since your match against that eighth grader yesterday, but it's a waste of time to further evaluate a weakling like you." I whispered out menacingly as I bowed my head and I pushed my hands into my pants pockets, the feeling of two dynamite sticks rubbing up against the palms of my hands from my previous action. My fingers curled around them.

I heard Sawada exclaim something, but I didn't care to catch it as I took out my two sticks of dynamite, and held them up for my target to see. It was time to end this. Sawada had no idea that I was probably doing him a favor, promising a quick and instant death.

"You're a nuisance." I growled out behind my cigarette, my bangs overshadowing my face. "Die right here."

As I lifted the two sticks of dynamite to my lit cigarette, I heard Sawada scream about my weapon of choice.

"Later." I mumbled out without a pinch of sympathy, tossing the two sticks of lit dynamite Sawada's way. Two should have been enough to finish off a kid of his scrawny size.

Having already judged the right amount of distance to stand away from Sawada, I just stood in place as the kid fell on his ass, tears in his eyes as the dynamite flew his way. At least the kid knew a hopeless scenario when he saw one.

To my complete surprise though, the sound of a gunshot went off a few feet away from me. Slightly jumping at the unexpected sound, I saw the fuses on my dynamite split in half in mid-air. The two sticks then fell to the ground, completely ineffective and no longer able to explode.


As I heard the Italian-Japanese slang ring out from my left, I quickly glanced in that direction to see…a little man? He was sitting upon a nearby window of the gym, wearing a suit and a fedora, a smoking pistol in his left hand, and…was that a yellow pacifier hanging from his neck? Who was this freak?

"Reborn!" Sawada shouted in surprise, a slight note of relief entering his voice.

…This was Reborn-san? The man who had brought me here?

Seeming to have sensed the incredulous look upon my face, 'Reborn' glanced in my direction, his big, black eyes practically staring into my soul.

"You came earlier than expected, Gokudera Hayato." The little suited man commented with a knowing smile, not at all sounding surprised like his words would have had me believe.

Too shocked after finally recognizing the high nasally voice that had called for me back in Italy, I couldn't say a word in response, and was unable to even come up with what I wanted to say. This guy looked no older than a one-year-old!

"Ehh? You know each other?" I heard Sawada exclaim from his seat on the ground.

I couldn't tell what my target was doing at the moment, since I refused to look away from the little man perched in front of me. I had no idea what he was going to do with the pistol he still held.

"Yeah," Reborn responded as he looked in Sawada's general direction. "He's a member of the Family that I called over from Italy."

Hearing the confirmation from the small fedora-wearing man, only made my head spin more. Although, I did try to hide the little swell of pride I felt when he mentioned that I was part of the Family. Even though it technically wasn't true, I could understand why he explained it to Sawada in that way. My target had been proven to be dumber than a rock, so it was only right to simplify things for him.

"So this guy is in the mafia?" Sawada screamed in fright. I really had to hold back a shout of, 'No shit!', as I noticed Reborn-san open his mouth to speak again.

"It's my first time meeting him as well, though." Reborn-san said with a calculative tone as he turned his head to look at me again.

Accepting at this point that Reborn-san was one of those midgets—or little people, or whatever—I could see that the other man was prompting me to speak my turn now.

"So you're the Ninth's highly trusted assassin, Reborn." I stated factually and straight to the point as I thought over my previous request. "You're not kidding about me becoming a candidate as the successor if I kill Sawada, right?"

"What?" Sawada yelled in fright as he overheard our conversation. I didn't exactly make it discreet. "What are you talkin—"

"Yeah, that's right." Reborn interrupted with a sickening nonchalant smile. "Well, let's continue the killing."

Wow, everyone was right. Reborn-san was ruthless, even to his students.

"Hey! Wait!" Sawada exclaimed with complete bafflement, his eyes shaking with untellable fear as he pleaded with Reborn-san. "K-Killing me…what are you talking about? You're joking, right?"

Reborn-san's answer was quick and emotionless, like a hitman's should be.

"I'm serious."

I could see Sawada's eyes widen in complete disbelief at his mentor's words.

"What? No…No way." As his words tumbled from his mouth, and as he finally registered what was going on, I saw Sawada point his finger at Reborn-san, raising his voice a couple octaves in anger.

"You're betraying me, Reborn? You mean everything until now was a lie?"

Reborn-san's expression never changed, even as his student questioned his loyalty. All he did was point his gun at Tsuna with a smile on his face.

"That's wrong. I'm telling you to fight."

When Sawada and I heard his matter of fact tone, my target finally seamed to comprehend the situation (you'd think he would have understood when I threw my dynamite at him in the first place!). With a face of complete and utter terror, Sawada jumped back from Reborn-san as if the little man had actually shot him with the gun that was still pointed at him.

"Wha—?" Sawada screamed in fright as shock overtook his body, making him tremble as his eyes eventually turned to look at me once again. "F-Fight? With the transfer student…?"

Apparently, it didn't take much for Sawada to figure out who was at an advantage concerning the situation, because he quickly turned around and tried to flee in the opposite direction.

"You've got to be kidding!" My spiky-haired target screamed as he made his quick getaway. "How do you expect me to fight with the mafia?"

I didn't bother answering the stupid question my target shouted (well, what the hell did he expect when he became a candidate for a mafia position?), since Sawada decided to be completely retarded in general with concern towards his getaway. The smart thing to do would have been to turn around and run in the complete opposite direction from your opponent. But Sawada, apparently, thought it was better to turn around and run away to the side, parallel of me, which only made it too easy for me to catch up as I ran after him. I wasn't the fastest runner around (smoking lungs were bad for long endurance), but this kid had to be the slowest runner I've ever seen. You'd think with all the bullies that chase him around that the kid would be more physically fit.

"Wait," I growled out demandingly as I slid to a stop a couple feet from Sawada after I had outrun him, my head still bowed to hide my face from view. Thankfully, my target stopped like I had commanded him. He wailed in dismay as we stood a couple feet away from each other, his brown eyes widening in horror as my own narrowed in determination for what I was about to do.

There was no way that my target was going to escape now.

Being more than ready to thoroughly end this, so as to not prolong the inevitable (and having already taken out my box of cigarettes during my run to catch up with my fleeing target), I hurriedly stuck about seven more cigarettes into my mouth. With a quick flurry of my hand, I replaced my nearly empty box of cigarettes into my pocket as my other hand flipped open my lighter. The device immediately brought forth a flame with the flick of my thumb on the flint. With quick reflexes built from my experience as a hitman for hire, I lit-up my seven new cigarettes in a matter of seconds.

Sawada could only stare on in horror-filled fascination as I then quickly put my lighter away, both of my hands soon becoming filled with eight sticks of dynamite that I had taken from various places on my body, my hands too quick for Sawada to see where I had gotten them. With adrenaline pumping through my veins at a mile a minute, the second that I pulled the right amount of bombs from my person, I quickly brought the sticks up to my mouth, my many cigarettes quickly igniting the fuses.

With a menacing glare sent in Sawada's direction, I presented my lit sticks of dynamite to him for only a moment as I judged the distance between us. This gave my target the chance to scream as he questioned how it was possible for me to hold so much dynamite on myself.

To my surprise, Reborn-san decided to enlighten my target before I tried to kill him.

"It's said that Gokudera Hayato is a human explosive device that conceals dynamite all over his body." The little man explained knowingly, with a barely traceable hint of amusement. "His other name is Smokin' Bomb Hayato."

Having been surprised by Reborn-san's abrupt explanation (and slightly basking in the fact that he made me sound really cool), I accidently gave Sawada the opportunity to run away (the right way, might I add), perpendicular from me, all the while screaming about my in-human skills. Noticing Sawada's getaway, and that the fuses on my dynamite were practically reaching their explosive bases, I quickly threw the sticks in Sawada's fleeing direction, screaming at the other to die as I tried to cover up the fact that I had almost let myself get blown up.

To my disappointment, my bombs blew up before they could reach Sawada's person, which only resulted in the blast pushing him forward with a startled scream. Cursing myself for getting so easily distracted, I gave chase before I let the smoke from the explosion clear, knowing full well that my target was still running away.

Too bad for Sawada (who apparently had no sense of direction either), his run for his life ended up getting him trapped in an outcropping as he ran past the gymnasium and further into the school yard, his body now completely surrounded by the tall, imposing outer walls of the school. I stayed my distance as I heard my target curse his bad luck, making sure that I was the only thing standing between Sawada and his next getaway, since three sides of the school were already encompassing us. I just hoped that one of the first floor classrooms hadn't left any of their windows open.

"This is it." I proclaimed with a menacing air, sending one more deadly glare towards Sawada's direction as he turned around to face me with fearful tears in his eyes. I didn't let a single ounce of pity that I felt weigh me down, or show on my face, as I lit eight more sticks of dynamite in a flurry of motion, and quickly sent them Sawada's way.

To my complete and total surprise, Yamamoto somehow showed up right when I was about to throw my dynamite and somehow passed by me without me noticing (what the fuck? Was he a ninja? What the hell was he even doing here?). Just as I let my bombs fly, he waved and casually called out to Sawada, like he couldn't read the deadly atmosphere concerning the situation at hand. I could only stare on in complete puzzlement as my sticks of dynamite fell to Sawada's, and now, Yamamoto's feet. Dang it! Now I threw my bombs too early! They were still at the beginnings of their fuses, so it would take the next couple of minutes to explode. I hope Reborn-san didn't report my mishaps to the Ninth…

Thankfully, Sawada still had no place to run, and both him, and an idiotic Yamamoto weren't going to be able to resolve the situation they were in. I didn't expect to be killing Yamamoto also, but I saw this as an opportunity to kill two birds with one stone, so to speak. In the end, I wasn't even upset about the idea.

Still, Sawada tried valiantly to keep himself alive as he noticed the fuses slowly burn away. I saw the shorter kid fall to his knees and try to smother the lit fuses with his hands while a completely clueless Yamamoto watched what was going on from the sidelines. Sadly, Sawada's wussiness won out in the end, because he screamed like a little girl when he tried to snuff out one of the flames, crying out in pain as he burnt his hand. To my utter amusement and secret joy, Yamamoto even picked up one of my dynamite sticks, and inspected it like he had never seen one before (I shuddered to think what he would be like around fireworks).

"Hey Tsuna, what game is this?" Yamamoto questioned in that idiotic voice of his, one of his irritating smiles popping onto his face as he held up the lit dynamite for inspection (what a complete dumbass! I was doing society a favor by killing this guy off!) . My shock only intensified when I heard him continue with, "It looks like fun! Let me in too!"

It took everything I had not to comment as I willed myself to watch the dynamite do its job. What complete moron thought that having lit dynamite sticks around him was part of a game? Who the fuck was this kid?

Before I could gleefully watch the demise of Wussy-Boy and Shit-for-Brains though, I heard the sound of a gun going off above me. I stiffened at the sound, but before I could look around for its origin, I saw Sawada's eyes glaze over. As my target fell backwards, I noticed his chest puff out, like something was trying to tear itself from his body. I could only stand aghast as Sawada's clothes were ripped from his body into tiny shreds, my target standing back up with a look of enraged determination on his face and clad only in his boxers—and was that an orange flame coming out of his head? What the fu

"Reeebooorn!" Sawada screamed at the top of his lungs, his voice fiery and bold. "I'll put out the fuses with my Dying Will!"

Dying Will? Huh? What the fuck was going on here?

Even though my questions were never answered, I was able to witness Sawada do as he proclaimed in his earlier out-of-character statement. With lighting quick speed that put by bomb grabbing techniques to shame, Sawada ran around the small area he was in, defusing the dynamite sticks without a care to how they were burning his hands.

"What?" I exclaimed through my mouthful of cigarettes as Sawada finished the job he couldn't do seconds earlier by putting out the small fuse on the stick of dynamite that Yamamoto was still holding. Unable to believe what I was seeing—hell, refusing might have been a better word— I grabbed eight sticks of dynamite in each hand, instead of the typical four.

I had no idea how Sawada was doing this. He was a completely different person now. It was almost like the first time I saw him.

"Double Bombs!" I shouted after I had quickly lit each stick in one smooth motion, and threw them towards Sawada's location again as I coughed a bit from the overabundant cigarette smoke getting into my lungs (maybe I could teach myself in the future to only use one cigarette to light my dynamite?).

But Sawada quickly saw to all of them too. The usually pathetic and hopeless kid screaming, "Diffuse!", over and over again in an obnoxious fashion. I could feel my blood begin to boil with irritation as I saw every one of my sixteen bombs now lying useless at Sawada's feet.

What the fuck was going on? This was supposed to be quick and easy! Why the hell were things turning out this way?

With my anger getting to me, I threw caution to the side like a used cigarette, and grabbed twelve sticks of dynamite in each hand. It was extremely difficult, and I had to hold my hands out like a cradle in order to hold them all, but I'd be damned if I let this pathetic kid beat me!

As fast as I could, I lit all of the dynamite in my possession. This was a new trick that I was still trying to perfect, but I didn't have any other option at this point if Sawada was able to get past my best move.

With a mighty cry of, "Triple Bombs!", I attempted to throw my lit sticks of dynamite like I had with my last two moves, but even my dexterous fingers were having trouble trying to maintain a grip while trying to throw at the same time. Because of that, and my haste, some of the bombs slipped out of my fingers to the ground below me; half of them flying towards Sawada as the others lay at rest around my feet.

"Shit!" I shouted as most of my cigarettes fell from my mouth too. This was it. I knew I didn't have enough time to make a run for it and save myself because I had wasted too much time fumbling with my dynamite after I had lit them. The fuses had almost reached their explosive casings, and there was nothing I could do about it now. This was…

…The end of me.

As I closed my eyes to my unexpected fate, I realized that I didn't even have enough time to reflect on my poor excuse for a life, or the things I would never get to experience. I was so resigned to my death that I almost didn't hear the sound of Sawada's fiery shouts above the fizzing of the dynamite around me. Before I knew it, I was hearing him scream, "Diffuse! Diffuse!", beside me, like a crazed lunatic—Wait a minute! He was diffusing the bombs around my feet! What the hell?

I couldn't comprehend what was happening. Why was he doing that? I had been the one trying to kill him! Hell, I wasn't even nice to him before that, and yet…

…He was saving me.

I could feel my eyes widen and my jaw slack as I gaped at Sawada in complete shock and wonder, the last of my cigarettes falling to the ground in my dazed state. And as I saw that unexplainable flame on Sawada's head disappear, and as I heard my previous target sigh out in relief for taking out all the fuses, I could feel the strangest feeling in my gut. It was warm and tingly, and it filled my whole body along with the relief of knowing that I wasn't going to die. No one…No one had ever…ever…showed me such kindness before. Sawada had risked his life to save mine, even though I was his enemy, even though I had been the one trying to kill him…

…I had been so wrong about this kid—no, this man! He had potential, he was self-sacrificing, and he was a worthy candidate to be the Tenth Generation Vongola Boss.

A new feeling overwhelmed me then. Never in my life had I felt such gratitude before. The feeling was so powerful that it brought me to my knees. As I felt myself falling, I brought my hands out too as I bowed humbly before the young man who had saved me. Truly, he was a man worth following. I knew the laws of the mafia. And since neither of us had died, it was obvious that Sawada—no the Tenth—won.

I vowed right then and there that I wouldn't hesitate to follow this man for the rest of my life.

"I was mistaken!" I shouted as I continued to bow towards my hero. I felt the strongest urge to explain myself then. "You're the one who's fit to be the boss!"

With joy now filling me, I brought my head up to look directly into my new boss's face, my eye swimming with gratitude, and a self-conscious warmth spreading across my cheeks.

"Tenth!" I exclaimed with utter adoration. "I'll follow you for the rest of my life! I'll do anything you command!"

So lost within my new sense of belonging, I barely noticed the freaked out look the Tenth sent my way, along with his equally freaked out exclamation of, 'What?'. He was just startled by my drastic change that's all (or maybe he was cold, since he was still only in his boxers).

Thankfully, just in case my new boss was truly questioning my newfound loyalty, Reborn-san made his entrance again as he appeared beside me. With that all-knowing look that I had become accustomed to seeing on his little face, he gave the Tenth an explanation in his nasally voice.

"Having the loser serve under the winner is a Family rule, Tsuna."

As I heard the Tenth's surprised exclamation of disbelief at what Reborn-san had told him from his kneeling spot a small distance away from me, I felt that it was truly my turn to speak up, so that there would be no misunderstandings between us.

"Actually," I stated with some regret as I averted my eyes away from my hero. "I really didn't have ambitions to becoming the Tenth Generation boss. It's just that…when I heard that the new Tenth Generation candidate was some Japanese kid the same age as me, I felt that I had to test his strength…"

When I didn't hear anything in response to my confession, I feared the worst. What if the Tenth didn't want someone like me to follow him? As the fear of losing something that I had barely had a chance to experience overcame me, I peered up into my boss's eyes once again. I could feel my eyes widen beseechingly as I proclaimed what I truly felt deep down in my heart.

"But you were much more than I expected!" I desperately continued, my voice almost begging. "For putting yourself on the line to save me, I'll place my life in your hands!" Couldn't the Tenth see that this was how it usually was between a mafia boss and his subordinate? Why was he trying to refuse me?

"T-That's troubling!" The Tenth stuttered out in a panic-like state, his hands coming up before him to wave back and forth in dismissal. "Can't we just be regular classmates?"

It only took me a second to reply. There was no way that I was going to allow another person to push me away, especially after they had saved me! No, I was going to stay by the Tenth's side and support him!

"No. I absolutely refuse." I growled out menacingly as my eyes narrowed to darkened slits. My act of ferocity seemed to impress the boss so much that he was completely speechless afterwards, and, if the water threatening to spill from the side of his eyes was any indication, I had moved him to tears as well! The Tenth finally seemed to believe in my conviction!

Reborn-san seemed to be happy with this turn of events too.

"Gokudera became your subordinate because of your strength. Good job, Tsuna."

My chest swelled with pride at that. Finally! It had taken most of my life, but it finally seemed that I had the chance to finally belong somewhere. I would not screw this up! I couldn't!

Of course, my feelings of happiness were short lived. To my complete horror, Yamamoto had made his way over to where the Tenth, Reborn-san, and I were congregating, laughing that idiotic laugh of his that I had come to associate with him. I had completely forgotten that the idiot was still there! And my anger only escalated when he knelt down and wrapped his arm around the Tenth's shoulder in a friendly manner. Who the fuck did this guy think he was?

"Haha! You're really such a funny guy, Tsuna." The retarded jock laughed out in all his stupid glory. "Let me into the group too! You're the boss, right?"


I almost couldn't believe that this asshole had the gall to practically force the Tenth to let him into the Family. There was no fucking way that I would allow this dipshit into the Tenth's inner circle! I would rather castrate myself (it's not like I wanted kids in the first place), while looking into my sister's face! I had to persuade the Tenth to see reason!

"Hey, you!" I shouted out angrily to Yamamoto as I stood up abruptly from my kneeling spot on the ground. Yamamoto wasn't even worth the time to be called by name! "Don't get so friendly with the Tenth!"

Yamamoto could only stare up at me with a bemused expression on his face, seemingly undisturbed by my threat. Forgetting completely that I had originally intended to persuade the Tenth into not letting Yamamoto into the Family, I prepared myself to take matters into my own hands. Before I could even think of punching that infuriating expression off of Yamamoto's face, some just-as-stupid bullies decided to ruin my fun.

"Oh no, these guys are cutting class." One of the hooligans said with a sneer as two others came up behind him. I could tell from their physical features that they were ninth graders, and uglier than vomit. My theory was that their ugliness was caused from massive inbreeding.

"This requires some punishment." The one from earlier, and who was probably the leader, chuckled out menacingly. His two brainless subordinates laughed behind him with malice as they stated that cutting class was only allowed for seniors, and asked how many teeth we wanted knocked out.

Che! These fucks were just all talk and no game. I could easily handle them. In fact, since they were threatening the Tenth directly, it was my duty to protect him! This was actually great timing! I could now show the Tenth my commitment to him, and gain more of his trust.

Noticing the fear that crossed my boss's face, and completely forgetting about Stupidmoto for the minute, I quickly moved in front of the Tenth in a protective stance, offering my services.

"Leave it to me." I stated confidently as my eyes narrowed towards the three thugs gleefully awaiting my challenge. "I'll get rid of them."

And with that, I placed a new cigarette in my mouth, lit it, and started walking towards my boss's threat, four sticks of dynamite in each hand. I heard the cries of the Tenth behind me, as he tried to tell me to stop, but I knew that he was probably only worried about destroying more of the school grounds. I promised myself that I would try to lessen the amount of damage my next set of bombs created.

With a purposeful stride to my steps, and a hopeful place to belong to standing behind me, I vowed then and there that I would not waste the wonderful opportunity presented to me. This was my future now, and I would do anything within my power to stay in the Tenth's good graces. I would prove myself to him, and become the person he could trust the most out of anyone in this world. I will become a person that he wants to be near. I would become the Vongola Tenth's right-hand man! And no one on this Earth was going to stop me!

A/N: Well, there's the first chapter! I hope it didn't suck! Lol, and if you guys are wondering if the bullies made it out alive, just remember that this is KHR, so of course they did. They just left the school grounds a little extra crispy ;).

So, thank you for reading guys! The next chapter will be shorter, since the anime doesn't have an adaptation of Yamamoto's introduction chapter, but it will be awhile till I update again. The next couple of months are going to be difficult =(

Anyways, in this end section, instead of the usual 8059 sim stories I've been doing (I ran out of material for the moment anyway), I was thinking of doing something else at the end that showcases the hints or parts of the chapter in a more fangirl-ish light. After all, I am a fangirl, and just because I'm trying to write this story as close to canon as possible, doesn't mean I don't sometimes overreact for some of the hints. With this chapter, there wasn't any real hints to speak of, but I realized as I converted the anime and manga together that since Anime! Yamamoto doesn't know that Manga! Gokudera smokes, and since that Yamamoto only shows up during this ending part of the story during the anime, I started to wonder what his impression of Gokudera was when he saw him smoking during his fight with Tsuna ;)

Tell me if you guys like little things like this, and I'll continue them. Also, I'm thinking of doing these in third person, since I miss it lol. I would love your guys' input so please review!

Fangirl Theater (an affectionate rip-off of Tamaki's Theater from the Ouran High School Host Club anime):

Yamamoto had just gotten out of baseball practice for the day. His coach had stated that since he had participated in his class's volleyball tournament earlier, he was probably still tired, so he was allowed to quit practice early.

After a quick shower in the locker room, the young raven-haired teen was heading out of the gym when he heard an explosion nearby. Maybe someone was setting off fireworks?

Excited about the prospects of colorful exploding fire in the sky, Yamamoto followed the sounds of the explosions until he came to one of the outcroppings of the school. There he saw Tsuna and that new foreign exchange student (his name was Gokudera, right?), who were standing a distance away from each other between the buildings.

Completely oblivious to the animistic atmosphere, the young baseball player walked past Gokudera, and greeted his old failure buddy, Tsuna. Just then though, as he approached the brown-haired teen, a bunch of fireworks fell from the sky and to the ground surrounding them. Ever curious, Yamamoto picked one of the fizzling explosives up, questioning if he could participate in this new 'game' that he had apparently walked in on.

Seeing how Tsuna was too preoccupied with the game, since it was still going on (maybe he could play in the second round if everyone was still up for it?), Yamamoto decided to glance up then to see what Gokudera was doing, only for his mouth to drop open in shock as he noticed all of the cigarettes hanging from the Italian student's lips.

'Woah!' Yamamoto silently thought as the firework continued to sizzle in his hands. 'Gokudera sure can fit a lot of stuff into his mouth, haha!'

And that was how Yamamoto's fixation on the new transfer student began.