The Courting of Aomine Daiki

Disclaimer: I sadly do not own Kuroko no Basuke, although I have some fiendish plans to take over possession of it somehow. Sadly it will then probably deteriorate into a badly written yaoi novel, so perhaps it will be good if my coup d'état doesn't succeed. At this moment, I do not own it, but check this space for updates on that. (Also, I forgot to put up a disclaimer last chap. Apologies.)

Pointless A/N: This was the most difficult chapter to write. I've actually written out most of the fic roughly already, but not chap 2. I just labelled it as 'relationship progression filler' and moved on to writing the next chapters. So here you go, have some 'relationship progression filler' =P

Chapter 2

(The Kissing of Aomine Daiki)

Their second date isn't planned.

It's a Saturday morning, and Kise is trying out his skateboarding skills, because he has to be able to skate for a new advertisement his agent wants him to try out for.

He's never skateboarded, but he's not particularly worried about that, he's never struggled with anything athletic. And skateboarding is pretty easy, Kise discovers; it's just about knowing how to balance your body. It's pretty fun flying down the road, dodging cyclists. People are staring - skateboards aren't all that common, and neither are blonde models with hair flying in the wind - but Kise doesn't care, he's grinning as he zooms down the street full-tilt. In fact, it's so much fun with the wind rushing past and his senses all focused on feet and balance and 'whoa, another cyclist I just narrowly avoided crashing into!' that he skates further than he initially planned to and ends up in the neighbourhood park.

And of course he promptly careens into a dustbin, has to veer off-course onto the grass to avoid falling on gravel and comes crashing into someone obliviously sleeping on the grass.

"I'm sorry, I'm so sorry!" Kise gasps, and then quickly does an inventory check of his own body - yup, two arms, two legs, one head - he doesn't seem to have any injuries. "Really sorry."

"Sakurai?" It's Aominecchi's voice, leaden with sleep, and Kise realises he's sprawled over Aominecchi's abdomen, and yes, that over there is Aomine's head, and on the other side is Aomine's big feet. (It's only later that he thinks, 'I was lying on Aominecchi's caramel belly!' At the moment he's still a little too shell-shocked from the fall.)

Aomine's eyes open foggily and register the scene.

"Kise," he grunts.

"Aominecchi," Kise flashes his teeth. "Hi. What are you doing here?"

Aomine doesn't seem particularly slack-jawed by having woken up to Kise Ryouta crashing onto his stomach. Then again, he's probably fairly used to rude awakenings; Kise has personally seen Momoicchi kicking him awake at basketball practice.

"Hiding from Satsuki. She's on about studying for next term or something," he replies, blinking groggily. Then he sits up, and Kise rolls down from his stomach to his thighs as if he weighs nothing. He straightens up quickly too, and thinks that Aominecchi looks nice surrounded by grass.

Aomine yawns, blinks a few more times and then wipes the drool from his mouth.

"I'm hungry," he announces without preamble. "Let's go eat some burgers."

And somehow, fifteen minutes later Kise is seated next to Aominecchi in a restaurant and thinking that his horoscope must be very lucky today. (He's not all that sure if he really believes in that horoscope stuff, but two years of knowing Midorima have conditioned him into thinking that way.)

Okay yes, it's Maji Burger they're sitting in, and the lighting is fluorescent, and a bunch of elementary-schoolers are throwing spit-balls at each other at the next table, and Aomine is scarfing down burgers like a human vacuum cleaner, but there are some definite plus points.

They're sitting in a booth, for one, and their thighs are almost touching. It's driving Kise mad - he can feel the warmth and strength of Aominecchi's thigh millimeters away, and he has to keep his leg rigid so that it doesn't jerk. He can't help feeling thrilled, happy, nauseous feelings.

And the other plus point is Aominecchi himself. Halfway into his third teriyaki burger, he pauses in the act of inhaling his food for a moment and then pushes his french fries towards Kise. "Eat them," he orders brusquely. "I don't like fries."

Kise has already eaten two croquette wraps (and he paid for them himself) but the romantic in his brain squeees alarmingly because he happens to remember that Aominecchi does like fries.

And then the romantic feelings subside like a wave crashing down, because actually, Aominecchi has never been a stingy person. He always gave Momoicchi and Kurokocchi (and sometimes some of the other GoM-members, Kise included) ice lollies. He even gave Kagamicchi his shoes.

So he shouldn't be reading into left-over fries too much. All the same, he does eat them happily, low-carb modeling diet be damned. These are Aominecchi's fries, and they taste incredible, even though they're kind of cold, and manky, and Kise doesn't actually like fries.

"I'm thirsty," Aomine then says abruptly, and gets up and saunters to the counter. Kise eyes his calves and his strong back and his arms (Aominecchi is wearing shorts and a low-cut tank top) and then decides to check on his phone.

A big plastic container of pink milkshake is unceremoniously dumped in front of him a minute later, and Aomine slides back into his seat, sipping his own drink.

Kise stares at him.

"You like strawberry milkshake, right?" Aomine says boredly, scratches his hair and then continues to slurp at his own Coca Cola.

'Squeeeeee!' goes the romantic side of Kise's brain. 'Squeeeeeee!'

The calorie-counting model side of his brain says, 'That's over 800 calories, you're not allowed, you have a shoot Wednesday,' but luckily the romantic side's enthusiastic 'squeees!' drown out the words, and Kise enthusiastically matches his slurps to Aomine's.

Aominecchi actually grins. "You'll lose fan girls if you slurp like that."

"It hasn't put off your fan girls," Kise points out with a small smile.

"I don't have fan girls," Aomine says dismissively, and Kise thinks, 'Yeah, maybe not in the way I do, but...'

Aominecchi doesn't get girls lining up to give him candy and love letters and giggle at him from afar; he doesn't get girls who dream of romantic sunsets and chaste kisses and holding hands.

Aomine's 'fan girls' are far fewer than Kise's own, but they're there. (Of course Kise has taken note of them, it's hard not to notice those predatory eyes devouring the one you have your heart set on.)

The girls who like Aomine don't squeal and write love letters; they make whispered propositions, they wink at him lewdly and they make no secret of it that they want to jump him and screw his brains out. (Not that Kise can blame them, the boy is sex-on-legs.)

Kise gets cookies and love letters and a troupe of girls following him adoringly wherever he goes, yes, but Aomine gets action.

Kise doesn't like any of this, but it's not as though Aominecchi is a man-whore or anything. (Or if he is, he's really good at keeping it a secret.) In fact, he's never said anything about having sex to any of his friends. Kise knows that he's definitely had sex thanks to a girl at Teiko who'd told almost the entire school about what they'd done in the boys' locker room before the graduation ceremony, but Aominecchi himself has never said anything about it.

He's pretty sure more girls would have followed suit in high school. (And it's not like he's totally inexperienced himself.)

He slurps at the strawberry shake a little more despondently.

Then again, he's also pretty sure that Aominecchi hasn't bought those girls extra-large calorie-bursting beautifully frothy pink milkshakes either.

He brightens.

A conversation ensues about the coming year's basketball. Predictably, Aomine is sure that Touou's going to take the Inter-highs and the Winter Cup and the world and then probably dominate the universe, and Kise rolls his eyes and tells him to eat his words, because Kaijo will kick their asses, and then the topic shifts to Seirin, and whether they'll still be as strong without Kiyoshi Teppei in their line up, and Aomine says, "It doesn't matter, I'll kick their asses." Kise scoffs, Aomine throws a fry at him - all in all it's comfortable banter. It's become dusky outside, and the sky is streaked pink and it looks like there's a gorgeous sunset.

Finally Aomine gets up and stretches, showcasing a small square of taut caramelly ab as his shirt lifts, and Kise thinks he might have to start drinking caramel shakes instead of strawberry ones.

"I've got to go to Satsuki's house for dinner," he grumbles.

"I'll walk with you, my house is on the way there," Kise offers, and Aomine nods as if he'd already assumed as much.

Kise doesn't even question how Aomine can contemplate dinner after five teriyaki burgers, all he can think is, 'We're walking home together! Shoujo romance novel! Squeeee!'

As he follows Aominecchi's navy-blue head out of Maji burger and onto the street, the other, scheming part of his brain has taken over his thought processes.

'This is it,' the manipulative, do-or-die, win-at-all-costs part of Kise insists as Aomine gives him a small, lop-sided smirk and starts ambling down the street. 'This is your chance. You have to kiss him. Kiss him outside your house, with the sun setting behind you. You have to do it somehow!'

'But how?' Kise wonders, terrified and intrigued by the notion, as his feet hasten to catch up to Aominecchi on autopilot.

'Tell him there's something in his mouth that you have to remove with your tongue.' The sarcastic thought is jarring; sometimes that part of his brain is very rude, really.

Aomine is nattering on about Momoicchi, it seems, grumbling about how he has to attend dinner at 6pm sharp, and that it's such a pain, he wants to sleep, oh, are those limited edition Nike-shoes in that store window? Kise lets him ramble (he doesn't seem to need reciprocal conversation) and focuses on his own clenched up stomach and the thought that's chanting in his brain, 'Have to kiss him. Have to kiss him. Have to kiss him.'

The thought has so consumed his brain and his very being that he doesn't even notice that they're standing outside his own house until Aomine scratches his ear and says, "Okay, bye then."

It's do or die. Kise can't help himself; as the other boy turns away he flings his lips into the general vicinity of Aomine's head hastily.

His teeth rake against Aominecchi's nose, and he realises he's missed his lips completely.

"Ow," grumbles Aomine, surprised for a moment. He stares suspiciously. "What are you doing Kise?" But even as he says that, his eyes are tilting down knowledgeably, as if he's realised what that abortive attempt was.

'He knows. He knows that was a kiss-gone-wrong.'

"I'm biting your nose, can't you see?" Kise says haughtily, trying to save face. "It's the new version of saying 'Sayonara*'."

Honestly, he's embarrassed, and he kind of wishes he had Kuroko's magical powers of vanishing right about now, and he doesn't want to look at Aominecchi at all.

He hears a pleasant rumbling noise, and realises that Aominecchi's laughing at him.

'Great. Just great.' He turns around without looking at Aomine. "Night Aominecchi," he manages to make his voice sound bright and cheerful. "Have a good night. Say hi to Momoicchi for me." Then he strolls inside, head held high (even though he wants to break into a run.)

Once he's closed the door he presses his head against the wood. 'Why does love has to be so stupid?' He takes a few deep breaths, and feels a bit calmer, and then his phone beeps with a text message.

It's from Aomine.

'For future reference, I like to be kissed on the lips. Also, less teeth.'

Kise smiles, and suddenly feels hope.

One week later

It's in the middle of a photo shoot (on break) that he gets a message alert on his phone.

Kise's kind of miffed that his end-of-freshman-year summer schedule is so chock-a-block full of modeling work; he rarely gets the chance to sleep in or just hang out with his friends. In fact, he's been so busy that he's barely spared a thought for Aominecchi in the week since their second date. (Well, he has had a fantastic dream involving Aomine's caramel belly - in the dream he was very small and somehow he was surfing down waves of caramel, and it turned out to be Aomine's abs, such a nice dream - and he has thought of texting him many times, but his busy schedule has kept him from doing that.)

So when he picks up the phone in the studio and it reads - 5 messages, and they're all from 'Aominecchi', he grins.

14:31 Sender Aominecchi - Yo Kise. One-on-one? - says the first one.

He scrolls down.

14:33 Sender Aominecchi - I'm hungry. I want to eat and then play.

14:34 Sender Aominecchi - I want to play Playstation. You coming over?

14:36 Sender Aominecchi - What are you doing?

14:38 Sender Aominecchi - I'm going to Maji-burger.

Is this his form of an invitation to hang out, or maybe a date? He's obviously bored, that much is certain.

Kise grins to himself, and his heart does another pathetic flutter. If he could, he would dash out of the studio right now just to watch Aominecchi wolf down burgers, but of course he can't. He's a professional, he has to finish the shoot.

One of the photographers on set has ambled closer, swigging a bottle of water.

"Texting your boyfriend?" the guys says. "Or girlfriend?"

Kise smiles professionally. He's had coaching on dealing with members of the public or the press from his agent - and he knows not to divulge anything. "Why would you say that, photographer-san?"

The guy leers. "The look on your face. That's the look people have on their face when they get a text from someone they're in love with."

Kise can't help it, he feels his ears warm up. (He rarely blushes, but he can feel even his cheeks heating up now.)

"I don't have a boyfriend. Or girlfriend," he says levelly.

"A boy then, huh? Not a boyfriend yet. But you like him," the photographer says slyly, grinning.

Kise ducks his head in a parody of sweet modesty. "It's not your business, photographer-san." He smiles winningly as he says this, to show that he's not being rude.

The photographer nods amiably, winks, and then wanders off, and Kise gets back to the business of texting Aominecchi.

15:02 - Aominecchi =D! Are you at Maji-burger?

Seconds later there's a reply.

15:02 Sender Aominecchi - Yeah. Where r u?

15:03 - Photo-shoot ;3 What are you eating?

It takes a while for the next reply, and Kise sips mineral water while eyeing the phone.

15:06 Sender Aominecchi - When u done? Teriyaki burgers, duh.

15:07 - Probably another hour or two.

Kise takes a deep breath and types, 'I can bring some take-out to your house and we can play Playstation there after I'm done if you want.'

Another long pause, and Kise can't help holding thumbs; he wants to kiss Aominecchi properly this time, maybe that can happen tonight.

15:10 Sender Aominecchi - Yeah, okay. What time?

Yes! He pumps his fist happily.

"Back to your places everyone!" the head photographer barks. "Break over!"

15:10 - (Kise types fast.) Got to run, c u at 7.

Then he adds a heart-emoticon - perhaps it seems innocuous, but just that little heart is so evocative of wearing his heart on his sleeve, and what he's really feeling, and he wonders if he shouldn't erase it, and...

"Kise-kun! Take your place!" yells the photographer.

He presses the send-button and runs.

The shoot wraps up in two hours, and Kise leaves as quickly as feasibly possible; pops into a takoyaki*-stall on the way, orders three full boxes and then heads to Aominecchi's apartment with the warm treats nestled under his arm.

Aominecchi opens the door without fanfare (he looks nice though, he's wearing white, which always emphasises his tanned good looks); brightens when he sees the takoyaki (if Kise were less of a positive person, the neutral look on Aomine's face when seeing him versus the way his face transforms when he spies the takoyaki would hurt his feelings) and motions to the couch. They make themselves at home in front of the television, dig into the squid balls with gusto and then Kise proceeds to absolutely demolish Aominecchi playing an NBA-game on the Playstation.

In fact, it's all boringly comfortable until Aominecchi tires of losing (for the moment) and switches over to television, where there's a drama movie on.

They watch it for a while in silence, or at least, Kise watches it. Aomine, he has become increasingly aware, has been staring at him, or what feels like his left ear for a while.

Kise's good at sensing when others are staring at him - he pretends to be oblivious to it most of the time, because, well, people do stare at him a lot - but he's always right when he thinks he feels someone staring. It's a bit like a magic power, he can feel anyone's gaze on him - it feels a bit like the stares warm up a part of his skin - and right now, Aominecchi's gaze is setting his ear on fire.

He finally stops looking at the television and swivels his gaze to Aomine's. Caught red-handed. Aomine's unapologetic eyes are fixed right on his. He doesn't even bother to look embarrassed.

"What is it, Aominecchi?" Kise enquires.

"After you bit my nose," (Kise cringes) "I've been thinking what kissing you would feel like." Aomine says bluntly. "So we should try it, see if we like it."

Kise's throat feels a little dry, and he wants to tell Aomine that he's not going to succumb to his every whim, and he wants to be willful and strong and play hard-to-get, but all his traitorous mouth manages is, "Okay Aominecchi."

He turns to Aomine a little self-consciously. Aomine stares at him, and Kise stares back. The seconds tick by, and Kise's heart thumps hard, and he moves a little closer. Aomine glances down at his mouth for a moment, and he moves a little closer. Kise tilts his head. They stare at each other again. More seconds tick by.

Then Aominecchi's shoulders start shaking, and then he's sniggering, and that turns into loud peals of laughter.

Kise's stare is harder now; in fact it has morphed into a glare. He fails to see anything funny about not kissing.

Aomine's trying to stop laughing, at least, resulting in snorts and more shoulder shaking.

"Sorry Ryou, I just felt like we were in a teen girl coming-of-age movie," he manages in between wheezes, "The lame kind Satsuki loves to watch but pretends she doesn't," and then he relapses into laughter again.

Kise's glare softens, because hey, that's almost an apology, and hey, he used the nickname 'Ryou' (Kise loves it when Aomine calls him Ryou, but it doesn't happen often) and because Aominecchi always laughs at the wrong moments, and it's partly what makes him so awesome.

He eyes the sniggering, snorting, shaking object of his affections for a moment. And then he leans forward, quickly cups Aomine's chin with his hand, presses his mouth firmly against the laughing one, and kisses him hard.

...That shuts him up.

-***Interlude/Blog entry 2

First kisses. They're difficult. And awesome :D And they're extra specially tricky if you're trying to kiss a JAB (Jerk-Ass-Bastard, remember?)

Kise Ryouta here again my gorgeous readers, and this is my second blog entry. (I feel so accomplished :D)

I'll let you in on a little secret, once you've managed to get the kissing down, JABs are fantastic kissers. Well, Daikicchi is anyhow, kissing him is like nothing I've ever felt on this earth. And making out and the stuff that comes with that is better than basketball.

Basically, what I'm saying is: persist with your JAB, no matter how difficult and discouraging it is to romance him, because it's worth it!

My tip for this blog entry is: #2 JABs are not romantic. So take note of the small gestures and hints they deign to show you. Also (and this is kind of contradictory) don't always read into the hints too much. Your JAB might be smiling in your direction, and you might think he's totally smiling at you and he's totally into you, but it turns out that he's grinning at the plastic hippopotamus someone stuck on your head. Or something. You know.

In short, never take your JAB for granted and assume that you've reeled him - your big fish - in for now (because he probably will trample and stomp and perform slam dunks on your heart - don't be complacent!) But also DO notice the small things, like the rude text message he sends you or the cold left-over fries he gives you, because these things are the JAB-equivalent of red roses and surprise vacations in Italy.

And it's still worth it.***-

[Story notes:

I know nothing of skateboarding. No-thing. So sorry if I described the mechanisms of skateboarding wrongly.

I don't know if Kise likes strawberry milkshake, but now he does. Aomine does like teriyaki burgers, I did my research :D Also, regarding Aomine's eating habits: I like to think that he eats a lot, but he's not quite on Kagami's level.

xBits pointed out that Kise would not call himself Ryoucchi, as he only adds -cchi to those he respects. Very valid point. I'm going to keep it as it is for the moment, but I'll try to cut back on the 'Ryoucchi's' from now on.

For the purpose of this fic, Kise, Aomine and Momoi's houses are in the same neighbourhood, fairly close to each other, so in summer when Kise comes back from Kaijo (which is apparently in Kanagawa) they're all fairly close together. (It's plausible, they did attend the same school after all.) Also, Aomine lives alone in this fic, because I'm lazy and it's easier to work with that :D.

...And GoM+Kagami will make their entrance soon :D ]

Important, Kise will probably be replying to blog comments in the epilogue (which should be chapter six.) So I might be using some of your comments for that, beware. And thanks muchly for reviews, follows and favs :)

*Sayonara, of course, means goodbye. I'm sure everyone knows that, but just being thorough. And takoyaki* is fried squid balls covered in some sort of sauce, or something like that, haven't had it myself, have only seen it in various animes. (Sounds yummy, I'm a seafood-nut.)