Characters: Kise, Kuroko
Rating: PG
Words: (+/-) 1142
Summary: First dates are awkward and rarely go as planned, but a relationship has to start somewhere. Kise/Kuroko.

If Aomine thought that was the end of it, he was sadly mistaken. Kise Ryota didn't give up easily. "Wanna go see a movie together, Kurokocchi? There's a monster movie marathon this weekend, and I have an extra ticket for it."

Kuroko didn't think that 'extra ticket' was a coincidence, but unfortunately he had to decline. "I don't like horror movies."

"But you read ghost stories all the time!" objected Kise.

"That's different," Kuroko explained, "because there's no fancy theatrics. You have to think for yourself." When Kise still protested ("Give it a chance, you'll like it!"), he continued, "I really don't like horror movies, Kise-kun, so you'll have to find someone else. I have no reason to go see something I don't like."

At that, the blonde-haired boy pouted, full-on theatrical. A look that would have made Kise fit right into a horror movie - especially as the first to go. "Come on, Kurokocchi! Just one movie, please?"

"Did you think of a reason why I should go, then?" It was a good thing they were having this conversation on the way to practice, or they never would have been able to finish it.

And Kise never would have been able to say, "I'm asking you out on a date, Kurokocchi. Yes or no?"

Kuroko was vaguely reminded of childhood days long gone by, where kids would give little folded up notes to their crushes. And the notes would say: Do you like me? Check yes or no. He hadn't been on the receiving end of one, but he had seen plenty of them.

It seemed Kise was his very own note, asking flat-out what the answer was going to be.

They slowed down as they reached the gym, lingering outside so Kuroko could reply. "All right," the shorter boy conceded, "I'll go with you, but only on one condition."

"Name it!" Kise said, ecstatic.

"No more girlfriends." From anyone else, that would have sounded scolding, but Kuroko had managed to make it sound like one of those off-handed comments that people forget in five seconds.

Kise wasn't about to forget a single word, though. That was a warning, and he knew it.

It was the weekend of the promised 'date' and Kise was having a wardrobe malfunction. He didn't have any matching socks, his best pair of jeans was in the dirty laundry (which he had left untouched for two weeks), and he didn't have any classy shirts to wear. Now what was he supposed to do? A first date had to be worth remembering, but if he dressed like a bum out for a stroll … Well, he didn't want to think about it.

He had a couple of 'work' clothes, and they would look good on him - damn good. The problem was he couldn't wear them outside of job-related events, because knowing his luck, he would ruin them and then his agent would kill him. He liked living too much to risk it.

With very little choice, Kise scrambled to find a decent outfit to wear among the clothes that were clean. He came away with little to no success. His black pair of pants was too tight, his most presentable shirt was a baseball tee with a men's to do list on it, and his socks weren't the same shade of white. All in all, it could have been worse. That didn't mean he liked it and he vowed to be better prepared for future dates. A thought which sent a thrill through him. There were going to be more dates. He was officially dating Kuroko Tetsuya. Him!

He glanced at his watch, smiling - and then promptly let out a loud curse. He was late!

"I thought Kise-kun was the punctual type," said Kuroko impassively, ten minutes after the promised meeting time. He got up from his seat outside the theater and held out his hand. Kise stared blankly, so Kuroko sighed and grabbed his hand. "Let's go. We'll miss the opening credits if we don't hurry." With a light tug, he was leading Kise along as easily as a puppy. "By the way," added Kuroko as he held the door open for the both of them, "nice shirt."

It was probably a good thing that the movie theater had dim lighting. Kise had colored an interesting shade of red. He also hoped - prayed, really - that Kuroko didn't misunderstand his intentions because of the shirt. There weren't too many ways he could explain away 'do the dirty deed' - because it was pretty much a part of very man's to do list.

In hindsight, maybe he should have went with his 'black belt in origami' shirt. But since time machines had yet to be invented, Kise resigned himself to his fate. His first date with Kuroko was going to be one mishap after another. Perhaps he should followed Midorima's example and checked his horoscope. Was it an unlucky day for Gemini or something?

"Would you like popcorn, Kurokocchi?" He couldn't mess that up, could he? No, certainly not.

"No thanks. I've already eaten." Kise didn't hide his crushed expression at all. "Er. On second thought, can I have some candy, Kise-kun?"

Kise lit up like a firework in the night sky, his grin as brilliant as the sun. "Can do!"

Two minutes and eighteen seconds later, he was back - with popcorn. "They were out of candy," he said, dejected.

Kuroko patted his shoulder. "It's all right. I'll share it with you."

The movie was a typical monster thriller.

The woman screamed, the monster chased, and the man saved the love of his life. It was clichéd and hardly scary, but Kise watched it as if mesmerized. He jumped when he heard the screams, he made a face every time the monster appeared on screen, and he cheered when the man saved the girl. He was a captive to the on-screen acting.

If not for that, he would have noticed his date was captivated by him, and the movie was mere background noise. Kise had a way of being expressive without even trying, and he was honest with his feelings. When he felt scared, he trembled. When he felt dissatisfied, he stuck out his tongue. And when he felt awe, he admired and praised. There was no emotion that Kise couldn't show, and Kuroko was fascinated by that.

It wasn't so bad, this dating thing. The movie wasn't bad either, if it was producing those sorts of reactions from Kise.

Kuroko leaned against his friend, stole a piece or two of popcorn, and whispered, "This is fun." And he meant it.

Kise made a funny embarrassed expression and Kuroko chuckled. Kise gaped and Kuroko smiled slightly.

The movie was a typical monster thriller, but to them, it was the beginning of everything.