Chapter 1

Halfway through his tenth burger and Aomine's fourth, listening with only a half an ear towards that bastard's constant grumble of thought with the occasional hurmph of ingestion thrown in, Kagami realized that he was, in fact, actually dating Aomine Daiki.

"Fuck me," he said, involuntarily, and then his brain caught up with his mouth and choked him.

"What?" said Aomine, pausing mid-chew, watching Kagami asphyxiate without even a twitch towards offering him some soda or something. "You forget something?"

"Er," said Kagami. "Yes. I- my-" He took a deep breath. "I have a test tomorrow."

"So?" said Aomine, instantly losing interest.

"So I need to study," said Kagami. "So I…can't play basketball with you tonight," and when had it become a thing, that he and Aomine would do a pick-up game twice or thrice a week, and catch dinner afterwards, then hang out so long that they'd need to get supper too?

Aomine slurped his shake, and Kagami was disgusted to find that he knew that Aomine was doing that to hide a pout which twisted his face into something actually cute, and even more disgusted that apparently he'd mentally classified one of Aomine's faces 'cute'.

"Just borrow Tetsu's notes and read them," he suggested. "You can't be that stupid."

"I'm not stupider than you," snapped Kagami. "Kuroko's busy all today, remember that's why Momoi dumped you on me- so-" Light dawned, bright and brilliant.

"So we can't interrupt their date, yeah," said Aomine. "Are you really that stupid? Even Murasakibara knows, and he isn't interested in anything he can't put in his mouth."

"No-" and hadn't it been obvious that Momoi was getting a bit more hope out of Kuroko than he'd apparently showed all three years of middle school, and she was dumping Aomine on someone every chance they got, because apparently he was incapable of his own care and feeding, but Aomine didn't really need to be watched 24/7, he just liked to act like it. "It's just- I need to study, that's all!"

"…what about my croquettes," he said, unhappily.

"Make your own damn croquettes," said Kagami. "Or go back to bumming them off your teammate."

"I don't like Ryou's croquettes," said Aomine. "You said you'd make them."

"I didn't say anything like that!" said Kagami. "You just assumed on your own!" Except that he had been planning on making them that night, whether he'd said or not, because eating out all the time got expensive and Aomine tended to complain less when he got what he wanted to eat- Kagami had to get out of here.

He gathered his last three burgers. "Look, you- do whatever. I'm going. I need to study. -Bye."

He ran and did not look back.


Kagami's phone rang, and he answered it. "Did you and Dai-chan have a fight?" chirped Momoi's disapproving voice from the speaker.

"No," Kagami said. "Damn you." He hung up.

It rang again. "So you really did have a fight," said Kuroko.

"NO WE DIDN'T," yelled Kagami.

"He was waiting on the train steps for us," said Kuroko, neutrally. "He hadn't eaten anything. He'd been there since the afternoon. We don't have a test tomorrow."

"That idiot," said Kagami, and blamed himself. Wait, what was he doing? "He's in high school, shouldn't he be able to take care of himself?"

Kuroko answered this point with silence. Judgy, judgy silence. "You were going to spend the day together," he said, when he decided that Kagami had had enough of writhing in his own guilt. "You had a-" he stopped.

"…you were going to say date, weren't you," said Kagami. "Kuroko you bastard, how long have-"

"Don't blame Tetsu-kun," said Momoi. That coward had passed it back to her. "We're not the ones who forced you to cook for him. We're not the ones who forced you to play basketball with him after hours. We're not even the ones who suggested that you two watch taped NBA matches together! That was all you."

Kagami sputtered. "It's not- it wasn't- it's just that it's hard to leave him alone!"

"Yes," said Momoi, and Kagami remembered Momoi coming straight to the enemy, crying in the rain, and the weight of their history crashing down on Kuroko like a wave. "But once you do, you have to be responsible! It's like having a pet! He needs you."

"Why does it have to be me?" Kagami said. "I thought it was just you two! THIS IS NOT MY FAULT."

"I think he's going to catch a cold now," said Momoi, severely. "You owe him an explanation! He was really looking forward to those croquettes!"

Kagami tried to rub his migraine out by force. "Does he know?" he asked.

"Tetsu-kun thought you two might get along well," said Momoi, innocently.

"No," said Kagami. "I mean Aomine. Does he know?"

Kuroko came onto the line. "Kagami-kun," he said.

"I suppose that means no, then," said Kagami. "I'm going to get you for this, do you understand? Someday. Somehow."

Kuroko let the pause fill the spaces between tolerance, disdain, and a touch of contempt. "Fix it up with Aomine-kun tomorrow," he said, and hung up.


Kagami lay on his back and didn't try to get to sleep until he realized that he was staying up waiting for one of Aomine's random-ass late night text messages, and then he tried very hard to get to sleep, but couldn't. They really were dating, in a weird, abusive, basketball kind of way. The only thing missing, as far as Kagami was beginning to realize, was that he was pretty sure people who were dating did…things.

You couldn't grow up in L.A and not know that people did things, and sometimes two guys did things, and sometimes two girls, and apparently somewhere one guy and lots of girls, although Kagami was pretty sure that that didn't happen outside of Utah or porn. But it wasn't as though things seemed to happen that much in Japan, or even to him all that much, given all the focus he preferred to put into basketball. Coach and Captain appeared to spend most of their time together planning for the team. Momoi and Kuroko had declared some kind of cease-fire since they were in-between tournaments, and seemed to be making the most of it.

But Aomine.

It boggled the mind.

His phone chimed, and yeah, there was a text message. From Aomine.

Don't flunk, it read. Kuroko hadn't ratted him out, then.

Shut up, Kagami typed, but half-heartedly. He went on before he lost his nerve. Next week you'll get your damn croquettes. Come over.

Finally, came the reply. Don't forget the sauces. See you then.