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DISCLAIMER: I WISH I own the Prince of Tennis Characters and Techniques.
CHAPTER 1: Arrival
Another wonderful day it was in the Kanagawa prefecture. The birds were chirping happily, the leaves rustling along with the cool and gentle breeze of the wind. It was an especially perfect day for a new start, so to speak, and luckily it was the first day of classes as well.
Could it be a sign?
A red-headed boy's gum bubble popped covering his mouth. He nonchalantly sucked it in and returned to chewing the gooey substance. His companion, a tanned bald-headed foreigner sighed in disapproval.
"That's disgusting, Marui."
The red-head pouted. "Don't ruin my good day, Jackal." He muttered and blew another bubble. Jackal shook his head and soon felt a greeting hand on his shoulder.
"Yagyuu." Jackal called the renowned gentleman in acknowledgement. Marui held his hand up for a greeting and they walked deeper within the school grounds, dismissing the stares that directed to them from time to time.
They soon saw two of their other friends a.k.a. teammates who were standing by the water fountain ignoring, too, the stares they were all too used to receive. The regulars weren't 'super-star' famous, but they were definitely well-known. Their innate attractive personalities and their development- due to being winners and due to the people that they surrounded themselves with- imposed something heavy yet admirable to everyone's eyes.
"Sanada, Yanagi." He called the pair and all of them stood there for a short chat before proceeding to their respective classrooms. It was unfortunate that club activities were prohibited during the first day of classes, otherwise all of them would have met in the tennis courts. Probably with a few friendly matches to make their day.
"Kya~ It's the Tennis team!" It seemed that a few of the thick-skinned people had arrived in school as well.
Jackal sighed. "As popular as always?"
"You're popular to in the school, y'know. Just not next to me." Marui grinned.
"A few's missing though…"
"Niou-san's not there." A random guy commented and the few spectators nodded. "And..."
"That Sophomore..." his friend, another random guy, cut him off. "Kirihara, right?"
"I wish he was here..." a brunette commented from behind them. The guy shook his head, recalling how bloody pompous the boy was.
"Naw. He's an eyesore."
And then he felt a weird, shivering, presence from behind him.
"What did you say?"
"Eek!" He paled. "K-Kirihara!"
The boy glared at him and soon they were eye-to-eye. Everyone else kept their distance and watched it in a mix of anxiety and amusement.
Sanada, though, was having a headache. He massaged his forehead in an attempt to calm it down. He stared at his teammate who was causing all these trouble.
Everyone gaped at 'Kirihara'. And seeing everyone's amusing reaction, Niou chuckled and decided to stop his games. "Hai~" he said, and took off his wig. And mask.
Where did he even get that mask?
But Niou, unfortunately, even with his little antic did not remain in the spotlight.
"He could tell?"
Niou sighed. He did not get why this stoic person was more popular than he was. But oh well... being popular was only important to him because it guaranteed very amusing reactions from many people- and that's that. So in the end, he just shrugged and grouped himself with the others.
Together, the Rikkaidai Tennis regulars made most of the passerby gape shamelessly in awe.
All of them truly had their own unique and imposing personalities. Combined with the tennis team's reputation and talents- everybody admired them. Even Kirihara, albeit most wouldn't admit it. He wasn't even there, anyway.
Sanada looked at his clock, and then tilted his head to look at his teammates. Everyone stiffened.
"Let's go." he said, and his team nodded.
"I am so going to be late!" A certain sea-weed head ran towards his school, holding his bag under his armpit in his scurry. He heard that blasted bell ring and he dashed even faster.
It was then that he heard a car stop behind him, right in front of the gate he just passed through. He instinctively turned his head around and saw a black limousine. He couldn't help but stop his tracks and completely turned around, albeit not bothering to make his observation inconspicuous.
He watched the door open and a pretty boy with greenish-black hair go down the car. He looked extremely formal and he did not even bother acknowledging Kirihara's presence even when he was gaping at him so openly.
The mysterious boy then stood outside the limo and, as if on cue, another person came out.
It was a very beautiful girl with blue hair. She was as pale as snow and Kirihara looked down for more descriptions.
His eyes twitched.
Scratch that: the 'girl' was a friggin' guy!
Kirihara let out a deep breath and shrugged. It was normal of him to admire a girl's beauty (assuming she looked like an angel) and then shrug it off completely forgetting about the girl a minute later. Obviously, this quote-and-quote 'guy' wouldn't be any different.
The androgynous boy soon walked past him, giving him a polite smile. He got a tad flustered since the boy seriously emitted that extremely 'sophisticated' aura around him. It was like being a mere servant getting smiled at by a… prince?
Kirihara did not like the humbling experience. For most part anyway. Unlike Sanada-buchou or his other senpais, he didn't know this person well enough to say that he deserved his respect.
He realized he'd rather not. There was too many people in that school that he already (but begrudgingly) looked up to- people he would defeat someday.
"Mada Mada Dane." came out-of-nowhere. It was from that other boy and he was looking at him in a mix of guardedness and pompousness.
Kirihara's eyes twitched and gestured to glare. 'Impertitent little-'
But then his emerald orbs met his golden ones. And for that moment he lost his voice. Not to mention his breath.
The boy though, seeing that he wouldn't say anything else, apathetically turned away from him and followed the demure 'prince'. He could not help but stare at their fleeting figures. Was that little kid a follower of sorts? The fact that he never tried to walk side-by-side, maintaining a good distance… and seeming to accompany the bluenette wherever he went… Kirihara couldn't help but get the feeling that their relationship was like that.
It didn't take long for the two to enter the building though, and he cringed.
Kirihara realized a tad too late that he was… well, late.
The principal and all of his staff welcomed the new-comer in anxiety. It was just that their nervous states were replaced with an ogling atmosphere when they saw them. Those two new students were beyond good-looking. Their sophisticated auras, albeit in different ways, were also hard to miss.
The secretary ushered them in to a very expensive and basically unused seat reserved in the principal's office. The taller boy sat in front of the lean old man's desk, while the smaller one ignored the other chair and stood slightly behind the other as if it was the most natural thing to do.
The principal knew, of course, that in their world- it truly was.
"Yukimura-sama." He smiled, classically resting his chin on his hands as his elbows supported his upper weight. The gesture gave him the stereotypical unreadable old man aura that he actually was. "Welcome back to Japan."
"Hai, Hanamura-sensei. I missed this country, very much. But England had been good to us, wasn't it Ryoma-kun?" He turned his head slightly, but didn't look at the other boy. The other boy remained impassive.
Hanamura observed the two kids. The typical bodyguard/butler-master interaction during the early ages. It was kind of impressive to see such relationship at this age, but nevertheless felt that it was somehow different. Experience by old age told him there was something… more behind those facades the two children wore.
But, obviously, it shouldn't be one of his concerns at the moment. His main concern was, well… , making the bocchama feel comfortable. It was, after all, well-known that his parents had started their influence in England. And in these past few years, they became powerful to the point that they were the first Asians to be so close with the Queen.
Hence, to un-satisfy this mild-looking boy could get quite… troublesome.
He looked at his bodyguard. "We had a request that you be entered the same year as Yukimura-sama. You are only 16. Is that alright?"
"I do not see why not." The boy said coldly -offended- and the man mentally thanked the heavens he was given enough veins not to shiver under the young boy's glare.
"Ha-ha…" The bluenette intervened, softening the tense atmosphere. "Ryoma had been home-schooled like I was. I can assure you he would be able to follow the curriculum without difficulty."
"I…see…" he said, certainly feeling rather imprisoned being in the same room as these two kids. "That's good to hear."
And with that, he cleared his throat and stood up.
"Well, in any case." He smiled politically. "Welcome to Rikkaidai High."
Inside a certain classroom on the building's top floor was silence. Classes had just started when a staff member knocked, calling their homeroom teacher out. Soon, the woman went back in accompanied by two late-comers. Everyone had already introduced themselves earlier, she said as she watched them stand in front of lass, so 'maybe' they had to introduce themselves like transfer students did.
"You don't have to though!" Their teacher smiled anxiously (like a disclaimer of sorts), alerting the senses of two analytical boys who occupied a back row seats.
It was then that they heard a low, quiet, chuckle. "No, Yamato-sensei. We will introduce ourselves." the blue-haired boy smiled, making everyone ogle at him.
"My name is Yukimura Seichi." he said, and a few more squeals were heard.
"I think he's a guy, though…"
"Who's the other guy?"
"Kya!" Another batch of girls tried to stifle their fangirl reflexes. It was no use though, obviously. "They're both my type!" A girl whispered but Ryoma sighed, as he heard. He then met a bespectacled boy's eyes. He seemed to be analyzing his master.
"Hm… Yukimura… sounds familiar."
His seatmate, a person with a similar aura with him, nodded. "I think I heard of that, too."
Yanagi rarely commented on such trivial things.
And so, everyone stared at the two kids- ready to satisfy their curiosities to their heart's contents.
But the teacher noted that both kids were extremely quiet- so she deduced they'd rather not be questioned in front of class. So she clapped her hand , silenced the class, and lead the two to their respective seats.
She placed the raven-haired boy at the last row, by the corner, which his type would probably like. While the bluenette on a column near the window but on a middle row.
She asked them if their seats were alright and they nodded. She could not help but sigh in relief.
Yamato forced herself to ignore Yanagi and Yagyuu's curious stares.
Echizen Ryoma stared blankly at the window, shifting her gaze towards her master from time to time. And then to the people who were doing the same thing. It was her job, after all, to protect her master. To make sure no one planned on hurting him.
Her eyes ended back to him again. He was really so… fragile, to the point that even if it wasn't her job to guard him- she probably would have done so all the same. And... albeit it was understandable that most people would get the impression of Seichi being weak, she already saw so many sides of him. The boy was even an athlete! So she didn't get why she couldn't shake that impression of him off even when they had known each other for so long.
She sighed. There she was again, thinking of trivial things. She needed to focus on protecting him and that alone. And that was what she had done- perfectly.
But these past few years, her job became more and more difficult. She was, after all, growing weaker- thanks to her accursed female body that nobody but a chosen few were even aware she had.
She looked at him again. She wondered if he knew- how her job was becoming harder. Of course he didn't- otherwise, they would have replaced her already. She did train hard so that even the most critical eyes would not catch it- especially her being female.
Besides…, she mused with a hint of sadness in her chest, hadn't anyone noticed?
Yukimura Seichi had never even looked at her.
END OF CHAPTER 1
CHAPTER 2: Home
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