Zakuro slammed herself down on bed as she fought the growing embarrassment she felt after her encounter with Seigaku men's tennis club captain. She still could not accept the fact that Tezuka saw her in 'that' condition, which to her just was plain…unacceptable.
She sighed and closed her eyes. That was really disappointing. Now she wouldn't have a face to project in front of the captain she had a crush on. And that was all thanks to a certain Yuka Fumito, who was the best female tennis player on their team, but one who is worst in lying.
Zakuro clinched her fists.
Yuka could claim whatever she wants, and Zakuro wouldn't care. She never paid too much attention to their captain, anyway. She knew their differences and prioroties, and she wanted to leave it at that. But right now, it's obviously not the case.
'Liar.' she thought.
If only she could beat Yuka at a single tennis match, perhaps she wouldn't need to stay as her shadow. Not anymore.
But Zakuro knew who Yuka is.
And she knew that her dream victory against their captain will not be too soon.
"Ne, Fuji-sempai.." Zakuro muttered, without looking at the smiling tennis tensai who was sitting beside her on a school bench.
It was already half hour past five, and most of the students had already gone home. There were no tennis practices since exams will be on the next da, and everyone has to spend the rest of their free time for reviews.
"…I was hoping that you could help me,….about something.." she continued with a slight blush.
Zakuro blushed even more as she tried to think of the best way to say what she want. After all, what she was about to say was plainly irrelevant to tennis and to Fuji. Perhaps to everything. Zakuro bit her lower lip. She's at fault for being so unfocused the past few days, and now she's up to facing the consequence of her own carelessness.
"Zakuro-chan?" Fuji probed.
She flinched and faced the guy beside him, only to be welcomed by Fuji's warm blue eyes, which were looking gently at her face.
'Yuka's weakness…'she thought.
"What is it?" Fuji asked with a smile.
The blue-eyed boy looked at her in slight surprise. Zakuro blushed again.
"I mean…I'm failing in Math…I don't…know…I just thought…maybe….I mean…"
Zakuro sighed in surrender as she realized that she really doesn't know why she came to Fuji for help. Maybe she acted on her initial instinct, thinking that Fuji is a genius, and that he's capable of doing almost everything.
She mentally knocked her head.
Well even if Fuji is a genius, it surely doesn't have anything to do with her declining performance in Math. Nor does it have something to do with everything about her. But then there's the fact that she's desperate.
"Would that be a bother to the team?" Fuji asked.
"If I fail then I need to go for several make-up classes…and that would mean absences for our daily practices and trainings.." she explained.
Fuji thought for a while. He knew it wouldn't be much of a problem if Zakuro takes some days off their training. He knew her abilities very well, and he was sure she could easily keep up. But of course he knew Tezuka better. Any absences would be dealt with accordingly, and might just amount to a temporary suspension if proven not viable for excuses.
Then there's Yuka.
Fuji adjusted himself on the bench, feeling a bit uncomfortable by the slight thought of the woman.
Few more moments of thought before Fuji came to a conclusion that even if Tezuka considers Zakuro's reasons, there's always Yuka who'll surely go against the way. He thought it was her own way of rebellion. Very un-elegant for a beautiful woman. He couldn't help it but wonder as to who's harder to deal with. Tezuka or Yuka?
The tensai set aside his own thoughts and faced Zakuro.
"Maybe I could help you out." he said with a smile.
Zakuro just answered him with a blank stare.
"Tezuka's better in Math, but I guess I'm good enough. Unless of course if you like to ask him – "
"No! I mean…I'd appreciate your help. It's more than enough." she blurted out.
Fuji smiled at the visible blush on Zakuro's face. So he was right all along. Zakuro Amane has something on Tezuka. He first noticed it during the ranking selections. The way she looked at the spectacled man was more than enough for Fuji to understand the psychology of the situation. He's a genius after all.
"Then I guess it's settled."
"I'll just hand you my vacant periods so you could find the most convenient time to study."
..and then he left.