If Sakurai is completely honest with himself, he really prefers it when Aomine does not show up for practice.

… No. That isn't right. Sakurai just prefers it if Aomine doesn't show up while Wakamatsu is still there. That's it.

There is always a shift in the atmosphere, in the dynamic of the interactions of the entire Touou team, when Aomine comes strolling into their midst, with his bag or his favorite pair of shoes slung carelessly over one shoulder. Under the surface smattering of joking surprise over the fact that Aomine has actually bothered to drag his ass out of bed and down to the gym that day, many of the team members grow tense. Uneasy. Even a bit fearful, and understandably so. The difference in skill level is a blatant statement made before Aomine even sets foot on the court, and it never fails to render the benchwarmers more than a little awestruck. But more than that, there is a stifling uncertainty; they do not know how to act around him, this insolent, unpredictable, volatile figure who stands undisputed at the core of the team.

But then there is Wakamatsu. Wakamatsu, who reacts immediately, inevitably, and with no uncertainty whatsoever, gravitating towards Aomine on a burst of temper and mutual antagonism, actively seeking out the confrontation that even Imayoshi diplomatically avoids. The clash is always loud; it is often violent; it is never resolved. There is a different tension at work here, and Sakurai does not understand it, but he does know that it makes him suddenly and intensely uncomfortable.

Sakurai is the smallest member of the Touou team, and well aware of it. In a group made up almost entirely of strong and aggressive personalities, Sakurai is used to being a diminished, apologetic presence, especially outside of their basketball games. But when Aomine and Wakamatsu butt heads – sometimes quite literally – at those times, Sakurai feels, abruptly, that he has become an intrusive party.

Imayoshi senses it too, Sakurai is sure of it; he sees their captain's practiced grin widen slightly in those moments, but in a way that makes his expression absolutely unreadable. Imayoshi keeps the peace within the team by way of negotiation and careful side-stepping, and in this case, he clearly has no intention of directly intervening. They have never discussed it openly, but Sakurai feels likewise, and it is more than a matter of tact. There is an undercurrent to the hostility between their power forward and their center that is entirely separate from the substance of their verbal exchanges, and Sakurai realizes, on an almost subconscious level, that he has no place in it.

Perhaps that is why Sakurai does not make his presence known in the locker room when he hears two familiar voices, one raised in anger (as it so frequently is), carrying from the next row over. It's nothing he hasn't heard before; practice has ended for the day, everyone else has gone home, and arbitrarily, Aomine has chosen precisely this moment to show up, yawning and relaxed (presumably from a sun-warmed nap on the roof of the school's main building), shouldering his way past Wakamatsu's irate figure without so much as an attempt at a greeting. Sakurai is about to make a silent and hasty dash for the exit when he remembers the half-finished container of fruit salad he left in his locker. Part of him wants to just leave and come back for it tomorrow, smelly spoiled fruit be darned; another, more conciliatory part of him wants to go offer the food to both his teammates in a meager attempt to defuse the situation; but in that brief, frozen instant of indecision, a completely unexpected part of him draws him back towards the rapidly escalating argument instead, and Sakurai finds himself sitting back down on the bench, leaning forward, and peeking through the narrow space between two lockers – anxious, nervous, yet deeply curious despite himself.

"What the hell are you doing here NOW?" Sakurai can't see Wakamatsu's face clearly from where he is, but Wakamatsu's emotions have always been just as easy to read in his tone as in his expression.

Aomine has his back to Wakamatsu, and he rummages idly through his locker as he responds. "Not for practice. Just came by to get my shoes. Need 'em for something." Evidently he doesn't find his older teammate worth the effort of either turning around or forming complete sentences.

"That's bullshit!" Wakamatsu snaps. "You have a bazillion other pairs of sports shoes at home! Collecting them's like your fucking hobby or something, isn't it? Why would you need these ones?!"

"Because I like them and I'll wear them if I fucking want to, now go get in somebody else's face."

"There IS nobody else here!" On his bench on the other side of the lockers, Sakurai shifts self-consciously. "Practice was over nearly half an hour ago!"

"So you stayed behind just so you could yack at me, huh? What a thoughtful bastard you are."

"I …!" Throughout the exchange so far, Aomine still hasn't bothered to turn to look at Wakamatsu, but he does now as Wakamatsu steps forward into his space. Wakamatsu has both hands balled into fists, and now that Sakurai can see his face, he can tell that Wakamatsu is visibly struggling to hold back his frustration. "I stayed because YOU need to practice just like the rest of us, I don't care what kind of hotshot ace you are. And I'll make you practice against ME if I have to, damn it." Something in Aomine's expression must shift towards derision, because Wakamatsu bristles and goads in retaliation, "Think you're not up to it today? All that afternoon snoozing left you slow on the uptake?"

Aomine lets out a snort of laughter at this, and turns to straddle the bench and lock eyes with his upperclassman teammate. "You come to practice all the time, don't you, Wakamatsu?" The words are slow with condescension, and there is a significant lingering on Wakamatsu's name, like a challenge. "Well, let me tell you something." Aomine leans forward, his voice pitching low. "You can keeping coming to practice, bright and early, like a good boy. And you can train and train until the sun goes down, and you've got nothing but crickets and the stink of your own sweat for company. And still, you won't be able to last even a minute against me. One minute. I'm not gonna take you up on your nice little offer today, see, because it wouldn't be worth the time it takes for me to change out of this school uniform."

Sakurai isn't sure if what emerges next from Wakamatsu's mouth is a snarl or actual words, but suddenly Wakamatsu's hands are bunched up in the fabric of Aomine's shirtfront and yanking him up to lock stares eye-to-eye – one face smug and unperturbed, the other one livid.

… There it is. Sakurai finds himself fidgeting again, inexplicably agitated. That tension. Like a palpable shift in the air inside the entire locker room, which suddenly seems so much smaller and confined. Sakurai realizes then that he is holding his breath, and tries to let it out as quietly as possible as he continues to look on.

Whatever else Wakamatsu was about to say, it seems to have died in his throat. There is a new pressure in Aomine's stare, and it makes Wakamatsu's face redden noticeably, but tenacity and pride make him refuse to relinquish his stubborn hold on Aomine's shirt. Aomine's hands come up to grip Wakamatsu's wrists; Sakurai assumes at first that he is moving to pull Wakamatsu off of him, and Wakamatsu must think the same, as his fingers tighten in the cloth. Instead, Aomine's hands simply clamp down and steadily squeeze, harder and harder, until skin blanches against the bones of Wakamatsu's wrists and Wakamatsu winces, eyes widening with the beginnings of panic as he registers the effortless reversal of control that has just occurred.

Unhurriedly, Aomine swings one leg over so that he is no longer straddling the bench, straightening up fully and stepping forward in the process. There is a moment of deadlock before Wakamatsu begins to overbalance and is forced to stumble backwards, swearing under his breath.

"Let go, what the fuck are you doing?! Ow, goddammit, let go!"

Disentangling his fingers from Aomine's shirt, Wakamatsu tries to tug his arms down and away, but Aomine's grip simply goes with his movements and pins his wrists to his sides. Disbelief flashes across Wakamatsu's face, followed quickly by outrage. He struggles, the muscles in his trapped arms contorting spasmodically, and Sakurai sees Wakamatsu shifting his center of gravity in his legs, preparing to lash out with a kick. Aomine is faster, barreling forward in that instant to throw Wakamatsu off balance again, and he shoves Wakamatsu up against the lockers with a hollow bang that knocks the breath out of the older boy and makes Sakurai jump.

Smirking, Aomine brings one leg forward, and Sakurai cringes, certain that Aomine is about to knee Wakamatsu in the stomach the same way he did during that last disastrous practice he showed up at. Then Sakurai's eyes grow huge with alarm, because Aomine shoves his leg up between Wakamatsu's thighs instead, pressing flush against his groin and jolting a cut-off, shocked noise out of the latter.

"I warned you, didn't I?" Aomine begins rubbing the top of his leg slowly, rhythmically against Wakamatsu's crotch. Wakamatsu looks momentarily too stunned to react. "I said I'd let you get away with this shit just once. But you just don't learn, do you?"

Without ceasing the steady grind of his leg, Aomine pushes his forehead against Wakamatsu's and drives the other boy's head back against the hard metal surface of the locker behind him, so that Wakamatsu can't headbutt him, or even look away from his face in the middle of his humiliation. "Who the fuck do you think you're trying to be, huh? You want me to come to practice so badly? What can you do to make it really worth my while?"

"… Fuck you, Aomine." Wakamatsu's face is obscured from Sakurai's view again, but Sakurai can hear the clenched teeth in the words.

"Now there's an idea." Aomine snickers, bracing his body as Wakamatsu struggles again to get free. "Just remember, you asked for it."

"No!"

Aomine pulls back slightly as Wakamatsu tosses his head with an angry shout, then goes for the throat, licking a wide path from collarbone to just behind Wakamatsu's earlobe. Wakamatsu shivers involuntarily and jerks away, cursing as further escape is blocked by the lockers at his back. "Ha. Tastes like nothing but sweat. So you have been practicing hard." Aomine's teeth catch at Wakamatsu's ear. "You always one of the first to get here, and one of the last to leave? And going on and on at me every time I see your stupid face, like you want me to set an example for the rest of the team. All ready to become captain next year, aren't you?" He moves down, speaking around skin. "If you think that's gonna change anything, I've got some news for you. You still won't be able to do shit about me. In fact, I'd like to see you try."

Aomine's teeth seize Wakamatsu's nipple through the thin fabric of his plain grey T-shirt and bite down, deliberately. Wakamatsu is just barely able to hold in a strangled sound, but his face flushes dark, and Aomine notices and laughs, tauntingly.

"You should see your own face right now, bright red as a monkey's ass. What, did you like that?"

Provoked, Wakamatsu suddenly renews his efforts and breaks one hand free, striking out at Aomine's face. Aomine dodges quickly, but the blow clips the side of his head, setting off an annoying ringing in his ear from the impact. His grin vanishes for a moment, then returns with a new razor-edge of aggression. He releases Wakamatsu's other hand, and Wakamatsu immediately surges forward at him, incensed; Aomine twists out of Wakamatsu's path and moves to get behind him, even as Wakamatsu manages to halt his momentum with remarkable agility despite the crowded quarters, stopping himself from running into the opposite bench and then whirling around in a blur to get Aomine back into his line of sight.

Aomine looks mildly impressed, and pleased with the challenge. His expression is enough to bait Wakamatsu into rushing at him again, despite everything, but this time Aomine is ready and gives him no quarter, his movements deadly swift and impossible to track, and the two bodies circle and pursue each other in a complicated confusion that Sakurai's eyes dart back and forth frantically to follow.

It ends with an unpredictable move sealing a largely predictable outcome; Aomine captures Wakamatsu's back and overpowers him, this time forcefully shoving him over to bend far forward awkwardly, right shoulder and the side of his face smashed up against the cool metal surface of a locker door, hard wood of the bench pushing painfully into the fronts of his legs. Wakamatsu's right arm ends up braced unsteadily beneath his torso, shaking slightly as it supports the forward-thrown weight of his upper body; the other arm is in Aomine's grip again and yanked back, fully immobilized with muscles straining taut.

Aomine is never one for making his intentions unclear. He hooks the fingers of his free hand underneath the elastic waistband and tugs Wakamatsu's gym shorts down to mid-thigh, then starts to grind his own still-covered dick against the crack of Wakamatsu's ass. At the same time, he reaches around to grab Wakamatsu's cock and pump it at a lazy pace, smoothly and firmly from base to crown, a slow-building friction. Wakamatsu freezes, then groans through gritted teeth, shifting his hips in spite of himself, cock steadily hardening, lengthening in Aomine's grasp.

Oh god. Oh god. Sakurai wants nothing more than to escape the locker room at this point, but the door is closed and seems now so horribly far away, there is no way he can leave without being noticed. How did it come to this? Why can't he look away? Horrified as he is by his own fascination, Sakurai can't prevent his eyes from staying trained on the scene before him.

Aomine is pumping Wakamatsu faster, murmuring something that Sakurai doesn't quite catch. Whatever it is, Wakamatsu doesn't respond, too preoccupied with sensation, moving with Aomine now rather than against him. When Aomine purposefully stops and takes his hand away, releasing Wakamatsu's left arm at the same time, Wakamatsu makes an inarticulate, frustrated noise, and his freed hand goes immediately to his own cock to continue jacking it desperately, fight or flight both far gone from his mind in his current state.

For a few moments, Aomine just watches him, looking almost contemplative. Then, without warning, he raises a hand and brings it down onto Wakamatsu's ass with a loud, stinging slap. "Let's see if we can get these cheeks as red as your face," he remarks, jarringly casual, as his hand comes down again, and again, first on one ass cheek and then the other, alternating methodically. At this, Wakamatsu turns, if possible, an even deeper scarlet, the flush of embarrassment spreading to his ears and down his neck. He can't bring himself to stop, though, so he can only turn his head sideways to glare back at Aomine, who naturally is not deterred in the least.

"Hope you've been keeping your dick clean," Aomine laughs; the hand that had been pumping Wakamatsu earlier shifts to Wakamatsu's face, fingers gripping vise-like around the underside of his jaw as Aomine forces his thumb inside Wakamatsu's mouth. "Go on. Suck it. You know what you need to do."

Wakamatsu's face contorts with outrage, and even from where he is, Sakurai can tell, by the way his jaw tightens for a split second, that he wants to bite down – but for whatever reason, he does not. He complies, albeit with grudging slowness. It makes Aomine laugh again, evidently just as surprised as Sakurai is by Wakamatsu's sudden obedience.

After a minute and a few more echoing slaps on Wakamatsu's rear, Aomine removes his hand from Wakamatsu's mouth, a long thin string of saliva following his thumb and trailing from the corner of Wakamatsu's lips. He grabs one tight, firm ass cheek, his wetted thumb circling and rubbing Wakamatsu's puckered anus before pushing in, then out, then in again, steadily deeper each time, first to the knuckle, eventually up to the base of his thumb. Wakamatsu's body twitches, and he makes occasional stifled sounds of discomfort; Aomine pushes Wakamatsu's shirt up past his shoulder blades and licks a long line up his spine, and Sakurai can't be sure whether it is meant as a soothing gesture, or merely a lustful one.

Speaking of Sakurai, he is certain that his own face is at least as red as Wakamatsu's is right now, eyes enormous with mortification but still utterly unable to look away. Do they … do they want this? Or is this still about hurting each other? What … what am I supposed to do?

Now Aomine, still tightly grasping Wakamatsu's ass, thumb pushed deep inside his twitching, clenching hole, uses his free hand to undo his own belt and push down his pants and boxer briefs, then licks his palm and slicks up his cock with spit. Strokes himself a few times extra, just for enjoyment, though his dick is already hard and obviously ready to go. Unhurriedly, he pushes it between Wakamatsu's thighs to rub up along the skin of his perineum, nudges Wakamatsu's legs close together, and fucks slowly, experimentally, into the tightly narrowed space, the head of his penis pushing up past the underside of Wakamatsu's balls with each thrust. As the drive of Aomine's hips gradually increases in rapidity and strength, left hand now gripping Wakamatsu's hip for leverage as the thumb of the other hand continues to push up deep inside Wakamatsu's body, the sound of skin slapping against skin fills the locker room, resoundingly loud to Sakurai's ears.

Wakamatsu is panting hard, left hand still jacking his own cock, his right arm beginning to tremble from the exertion of holding himself up at a difficult angle for so long. His neck aches sharply from his head being pressed to one side against the locker door for so long, so he shifts backwards a little – gasps as this presses Aomine's thumb deeper into him – and lowers his head with a short sigh of relief, letting his arm take the rest of the weight as well. From his new vantage point, he can see the reddened, swollen head and darker-skinned, slick shaft of Aomine's cock pistoning relentlessly between his lightly quivering thighs and tracing the underside of his own penis, slippery with saliva, sweat, and precum; the image makes his entire body heat up even more, and he moans, his panting growing harsher and louder. "Ahh f-fuck …"

"No shit," Aomine hisses breathlessly into Wakamatsu's ear, as he bends forward to press his chest against the lean length of Wakamatsu's bared back. Their hips work in tandem, bucking and undulating as the muscles contract and relax in turn beneath tanned and lighter skin gleaming faintly with sweat. Then: "… You're a liar."

"… What …?" Wakamatsu struggles halfheartedly to process the words through the overload of sensations fogging his brain.

"You're a fucking liar." Aomine's lips graze the edge of Wakamatsu's ear as he speaks, low and rough. "Just look at you. You weren't staying late to make me practice with you; you were waiting around for this, weren't you?" Aomine squeezes Wakamatsu's ass hard for emphasis, thumb jabbing in deep, and Wakamatsu's next breath comes out in a startled huff, his lower body jerking forward. "Waiting to see what happens when I push all your buttons and you push mine?" Aomine's hips slow, their pace turning languid, teasing, expectant.

"… Yeah … sh-shit, yeah …"

"You saying yes, or is it just 'cause you're feeling it?"

"I don't know …" Wakamatsu's voice is more muted than usual, muzzy with pleasure, but a trace of irritability seeps back into it when Aomine still doesn't resume his earlier rhythm. He lifts his head up and glowers back at the other boy balefully, their faces mere centimeters apart. "Just, just fucking move already!"

Aomine rolls his eyes, but it is Wakamatsu's turn to be surprised this time when Aomine actually obliges, renewing his grip on Wakamatsu's reddening hip and ass, and snapping his lower body forward with enough force that Wakamatsu is thrown forward, narrowly missing hitting his head against the locker in front of him, and his supporting arm very nearly gives out. As their heated, vigorous rhythm resumes its steady build-up, the haze of pleasure begins to return to cloud Wakamatsu's thoughts, when Aomine speaks once more.

"But you were right, too." Something in the way he chuckles afterwards, breathless but genuine, makes Wakamatsu twist his head around to look at him again. "We've both been bullshitting." The look Wakamatsu gives him is only half-comprehending, so Aomine grins at him. "You know I'm way too lazy to haul my ass down here just for a fucking pair of shoes. I'm not even gonna be practicing, so what would be the point in that?"

The two boys look at each other, wordlessly, for what feels like a very long time, their bodies still moving, a multitude of thoughts and emotions churning just beneath the surface of their faces. And then Aomine finally lowers his head and presses his mouth over Wakamatsu's wetly parted lips, thrusting his tongue inside to lick and slide against Wakamatsu's own. Wakamatsu is feeling light-headed, and he seems to have forgotten how to breathe through his nose, and his supporting arm is quivering with fatigue and his legs ache against the wood of the bench, but none of that registers as particularly important right now, because he is so close, come on, so close

and then Aomine removes his hand from Wakamatsu's hip, reaches around to grip Wakamatsu's cock around Wakamatsu's own hand, deft fingers slipping upward to rub and squeeze at the slick pink head, before pressing firmly down on the slit at its tip, and that's too sensitive, fuck, it's too much—

—Wakamatsu breaks out of their sloppy kiss with a half-muffled yell, and comes hard, so hard that black spots dance momentarily in his vision, his entire body shuddering out of his control, thick white strings of semen coating both their hands around his dick and spattering the worn surface of the bench below him.

"YES, fuck," Aomine whispers harshly into the short pale strands of sweat-matted hair at the nape of Wakamatsu's neck, then twists to mouth and bite at Wakamatsu's trembling shoulder, leaving a trail of saliva sheen and red crescents of teeth marks on his skin. The rhythm of his hips turns frenetic, and he comes on a sharp intake of breath, muscles and tendons tensed in powerful, stark relief beneath sweat-gleaming tan skin for one long, suspended moment. Then Wakamatsu feels a hot pulse of liquid on his inner thighs, and a wet, viscous warmth begins to trail slowly down his legs.

Abruptly, Wakamatsu's body sags against the lockers, limbs exhausted; Aomine's arm loops loosely around his chest, the only thing keeping him from falling straight to the floor. They say nothing to each other for a long while, just catching their breath, the ragged sounds of their panting loud in the silence of the locker room.

Aomine eventually straightens, pulling away almost reluctantly from Wakamatsu, who staggers slowly back and just lets himself collapse onto his knees on the floor, sweaty and dazed. Turning away from him, Aomine meanders over to his still open locker and fishes out a towel to wipe off his hands, then refastens his pants and belt. He glances over in Wakamatsu's direction, and pauses, uncharacteristically diffident – but Wakamatsu hasn't quite come back to himself enough to notice Aomine's gaze. So he blinks in surprise when Aomine slams his locker shut and tosses the towel at him, then leaves him behind, a casual "See ya 'round, Wakamatsu" thrown offhandedly over his shoulder.

Panicking, Sakurai scrambles for the space behind the end of his row of lockers to avoid being spotted as Aomine ambles out, a look of vague satisfaction spreading slowly across his face.

Heart pounding over the close call, Sakurai tentatively peeks around to check on Wakamatsu, who has shifted his weight off his knees to sit back gingerly on his rear, but has not yet gotten up from the floor.

At this moment, Sakurai kind of just wants to bang his head against the wall. He's going to have to keep hiding and waiting until Wakamatsu leaves too, and then he'll grab his fruit salad, his stupid fruit salad, and he's going to try and fail miserably to erase all of this from his memory. What was that all about? What just happened? Sakurai is suddenly absurdly grateful for his diminutive height, because he is never going to be able to look these two teammates in the eye again. Trying his best to shake himself out of the wild clamor of his thoughts, Sakurai peers over at Wakamatsu once more. What is he doing? Is he okay? Why hasn't he moved yet?

Wakamatsu is looking down at the towel, clutched loosely in his hands, with an odd, almost bemused expression on his still somewhat flushed face. It occurs to Sakurai then that Wakamatsu – with his clothes in crumpled disarray, short-spiked hair damp with sweat, and a pair of dull, linear reddish bruises already forming on his lower legs, just beneath his knees, where the bench had been digging relentlessly into them – looks more than a little bit lost. "Moron," he finally mumbles, dragging the towel into his lap to wipe at the mess on his thighs, but without much enthusiasm. "How'm I supposed to ever see you around if you don't come to practice?"

- END? -