Initiate: Kuroko, Tetsuya.
He wasn't sure why, but today was the day he realized how far he's come. From his years in Teikou Middle School to his glorious journey through Seirin High, it wasn't until now that the feeling of accomplishment really kicked in. Sure, he had basked in that similar sensation before but that was before a scary thing called 'life' happened. He knew full well that basketball wasn't something he could do for the rest of his life, but it wasn't until graduation day that the situation dawned on him. He, like most, couldn't grasp the concept that he'd have to learn to let go because it sure as hell didn't work out the first time. Hating what you love hurts, but letting go hurts more. He knew that no matter how skilled you are, the world can always find a way to shut you down and push you into the direction it has set out for you.
The occupation he had right now wasn't initially what he had planned out nor did he see himself in this predicament, but then again, he never really thought of what he wanted to be. He was the type to think of things when it came to that point in is life and when that happened, he knew this job was meant to be for him.
Waking up at six am every weekday isn't what most people would like to do, but for Kuroko, it was the ungodly hour that seemed the best. Even though his facial expression or body language didn't display it, he was really happy and excited for the new day ahead. It was a Monday, a day that started the working week; Kuroko slid casually out of bed. He then shuffled to the bathroom, turning on any source of light on his way before stripping out of his shirt. Kuroko placed his shirt inside the laundry basket before residing in front of the bathroom sink. He let out a small yawn as his hand subconsciously turned open the cold tap. The water ran shamelessly down the drain before he dipped his hands underneath the cool sensation.
He bent over the sink, splashing the water quickly onto his face in attempts to completely wake himself up. He did that a couple more times, washing the back of his neck roughly as well before turning off the tap. The water trickled off his chin and down his chest as he reached for a towel. He dried himself, damping the tips of his hair that might've gotten wet. Once dried, he looked at his face in the mirror—his cheeks were rosy pink as his eyes were wide; he knew that he would look as bright as he did in that moment for the rest of the day. He slipped on a clean singlet before sighing in content.
Arf! Arf, arf, rrrr—arf!
Kuroko's attention quickly diverted downwards to the little canine that dared not go into the bathroom. The Shadow smiled fondly at Nigou who returned the gesture with happy eyes. Kuroko hung the towel around his shoulders, turned off the lights before heading into the living room. Seirin's ex-mascot followed along, barking in some strange excitement. Kuroko couldn't help but chuckle lightly at Nigou's behaviour as he walked over to the coffee table to retrieve the remote for the television. He turned it on, not really caring what program was viewing before shuffling over to the kitchen. The 6 AM news was showing but his mind couldn't register the words the new reporter as he had his concentration elsewhere.
He felt Nigou watching him as Kuroko entered multi-task mode; he turned on the kettle, placed a couple of breads in the toaster, took out Nigou's breakfast and filled up the canine's bowl. The second the bowl touched the kitchen floor, Nigou pounced onto it—chomping down those delicious doggy food. Kuroko smiled, knelt down in front of Nigou before caressing his fur with a single digit.
"Footage of the brawl near a night club has been caught on CCTV."
The kettle steamed furiously, causing the Shadow to ascend upright. He scooped out teaspoon worth of coffee and sugar, setting those ingredients into the same mug before pouring a reasonable amount of hot water into it, adding milk when he thought it was appropriate. He brought the steamy mug up to his lips before taking a small sip of that bitter-sweet substance. The toast had already popped out by then, but Kuroko didn't bother to pick it out as he found himself drawing closer to the television, mug in hand.
"The young adults that have started the fight appeared to be armed with weapons. Police were on the scene but due to the distance of the nearest police station to the location of the violence, police who were already patrolling the area were only available before back up could arrive."
Kuroko sat on the arm of the sofa as Nigou eventually joined him, "This world—it's scary, isn't it?" Nigou barked in agreement as the Shadow frowned at the graphic images of the brawl that happened last night. People clinging onto people in hopes to injure the other party; officers that seemed to be only travelling in small groups desperately were trying to stop the violence before someone gets hurt or worst. Kuroko placed the mug onto the coffee table before picking up Nigou into his arms.
"The police officers were terrifyingly outnumbered as bystanders watched in fear. But one young male officer did not show any types of backing down, even when the odds were stacked against him. He did not seem to stand out at first, but when one brawler laid his hands on a female bystander, the young male officer flung into action. He is yet to be apprehended for his commendable and brave actions that night. It is said that he managed to stop the fight before back up could arrive to arrest the offenders. We are also told that the officer took a few cuts from the weapons the offenders had. Here's CCTV footage of the officer."
The screen cut to the CCTV footage, showing exactly what the new reporter had thoroughly described. Kuroko watched in major awe of the poorly captured video. Nigou suddenly barked loudly the second the young male officer drew almost near the surveillance camera. The canine's reaction caused Kuroko to lean forward, as if to see who exactly the officer was. He couldn't grasp a clear concept of who it might be but the longer he stared, the better his mind could sketch out an image.
Initiate: Kagami, Taiga. Aomine, Daiki.
A loud ringing noise echoed within one of the two bedrooms in this modernised, city-suburban apartment. A groan, followed by a yawn could be heard as the male whose voice could be vaguely heard to anyone who bothered to listen sat upright, eyes closed and shirtless. The palm of his hand slammed carelessly against the alarm clock that resided next to the bed, atop the nicely, furnished drawer. His eyes opened, sneaking a glance at the digital time which displayed 6 AM, exactly. He then sighed, rubbing his face before leaning back onto the bed's frame.
Turning his head opposite to the alarm clock, he reached his hand out, swaying his hand aimlessly at the empty space besides him before his dry lips parted to speak in a tired tone, "Oi, Daiki. Are you alive?"
Kagami patiently waited for a response in which he knows full well he won't get anytime soon. His body slumped as he wanted to go back to sleep, but he found it to be close to impossible. Once he's up, he's up and no amount of pills could change that… probably. Kagami sighed in an obviously exaggerated way as his upper body slid to the side that was once occupied by Aomine, who is presumably on the floor at that very moment. He then crawled across the other side of the bed, peering over the edge and bingo—Aomine was in fact on the floor.
"Oi, are you alive? Wait, never mind. Saw you breathing." Kagami murmured. Aomine, flat on his stomach, groaned before turning his head to the side to face the red-headed fighter*, "Should I bother asking why you're on the floor again?"
"Shut up, Taiga. I'm tired. Late night last night." Aomine quickly informed, lifting himself up onto his knees. He crawled up the bed's foundations before lying comfortably on top of Kagami, placing all his weight on him. Kagami let out a groan of annoyance as his breathings' been restricted, but he wasn't about to complain.
"What did you do last night?" The red-head asked, not bothering to listen to the answer the Ace had to say.
"Well, last night I had to patrol mother-fucking shut up." Aomine muttered as his eyes refused to remain open.
"Jeez. I preferred it when you were just arrogant." Kagami complained, trying to shake off the extra-weight.
"And I preferred it when you shut up."
"Whatever." The two of them hushed into silence after that; still in the same, strange position. It didn't take long for Aomine to fall deep into sleep, but as for Kagami—let's just say that it's hard for him to breath, let alone sleep.
This casual atmosphere between these two—it was unthinkable for such things to exist seven years ago. Back then, these two were always at each other's throats when it came to being the best but now, their relationship mimics one of a best friend. It was certainly peculiar and not something one would think of for these two—heck, they didn't even know that such arrangements could be made, but it happened. And these two didn't have much room to complain. Their occupations and lifestyle might have something to do with why they're living together in a (purely?) platonic way, but ultimately they've decided this outcome.
Most of their close friends don't even know about this—after graduation from their final high school year, it was thought that they've all went their separate ways, but fate's got different plans installed for them. Before they knew it, their futures have intertwined—and not just Aomine and Kagami's. All lines cross paths eventually—some sooner than others. But once they have, decisions and complications are sure to arise, whilst long walks down memory lane and a little game called "comparison".
"Daiki, it's that point of time where either gravity's a bitch or you've just gained weight." Kagami wheezed out, receiving a sharp pinch to his side.
"I'm too fit to gain weight." Aomine lazily corrected, sitting upright and letting Kagami breathe easily once more.
"And there's the arrogance. Welcome back, hole of the arse." The red-head joked with a large dose of sarcasm, also sitting up.
"It's true but. You can't call me arrogant when my body shows the results of a fit man." The younger male sighed, sliding off the bed.
"I'll own you in an arm-wrestle any day—" Kagami tried to stop himself from saying anymore before it was too late to fade his sentence away.
Aomine noticed this but did nothing other than a mere smile. The Ace shuffled over to the switch in his bedroom, turning on the light, causing Kagami and himself to squint briefly before their eyes adjusted. Kagami watched the other navigate around the room, picking out clothes that seemed to resemble some sort of uniform before he headed towards the door, stopping in his tracks for just a second. He looked over his shoulder slightly as Kagami sat in the middle of Aomine's bed with a pained expression that made it seemed as though he was waiting for something.
"The only one who can beat me is me."
黒子のバスケ © 藤巻 忠俊
Kuroko No Basuke