DAY 8

Touou basketball member wearing jersey number 5 was back to being himself – the prick people had known him as. Cutting class. Skipping practice. Eating off his teammate's bentou. The 'gangster kid' that did all those sort of stuffs yet people come to love.

That night, out of his routine of placing the phone on the table; he tossed it on the bed before going into the shower. He was still draped in towel, trying to put on pants when the screen lit up and sound of vibration echoed in the room. With one leg in and the other stuck halfway, he hopped across the room and landed his forehead on the floor before the bed. Cursing himself for his own stupidity, he stretched out his hand for the phone.

"Yo, Bakagami," he growled, one hand rubbing the affected area. He winced.

"Wow, you're THAT unhappy receiving a phone call from me? Right – I'll just hang up then." He sounds disheartened.

"Wait, no – don't be such a girl, Kagami. Geez. It's not you. I hit my head on the damn floor," Aomine tried to fix the situation. He was relieved to hear the other male's voice lightening up with laughter.

"AHOmine. What were you doing, idiot?"

He took a glance at himself; towel pooling at his feet, pants halfway to his knee with little Aomine still dangling in the air because he won't bother putting on a boxer when he's just going to sleep. He decided that it'd be totally awkward for their relationship for him to be explaining the situation he was in.

"Nothing much. Stuffs," replied the boy simply, " I have my moments, okay. You?" He squeezed the phone between his ear and shoulder to get back on his feet, finish off what he was doing earlier.

"Duh. I'm talking to you. We're all spread outside the inn, making phone calls while Kagetora-san watches us. I feel like a freaking inmate and he's the warden – watching our every damn step; ready to pounce on us if we ever try to escape," said the Ace of Seirin with a hushed voice.

Aomine just laughed it off. "Should I pity you?" Finally, he managed to pull the pants up his slim waist.

"I think so."

Silence. Aomine found comfort on his bed, thinking of what to say for the scarce few minutes he knew they have left. Again, Kagami was the one ending the silence between them.

"So – you've been skipping practice? As always? " it sounded more like a statement than an enquiry.

He knew he didn't have to explain himself, the redhead should at least known him that much after spending every damn evening with him for the past 3 months. Every day. For 3 months. Even he and Kuroko didn't hang out together as much when he became his light in Teikou.

"I know I'm gonna win, so what's the point," he shrugged as he lay on his back, shirtless.

"There you go, that cockiness," the red-haired male sighed. " You better be ready when I get back, you impertinent bastard. I'm gonna kick your ass."

DAY 9

The blue haired teenager couldn't wait for the day to end – for why he knew the reason, he just didn't want to admit it. So much so he went to the basketball practice to kill his time. When he stepped into the gym, the game abruptly stop because his seniors seemed to be in disbelieve, like they were imagining things. He even noticed that at times, Wakamatsu glanced at his feet; probably making sure that he wasn't a ghost. The Touou basketball team could be funny at times.

.

He was flipping through a magazine with Mai-chan on the cover when his phone placed next to it vibrated with a call. Aomine quickly toss it aside and took about half a second to pick it up.

"Yo."

"Oi Ahomine. Do me a favour. Find me wherever we're at now."

"Why the hell should I do that?" The bluenette eyebrows met in the midline.

"To abduct me because I SWEAR if I have to take another bite of Coach Aida's food I'd die," he faked a choke at the end of his words.

" Then you cook. You're not half as bad at cooking yourself."

"If I could, I would. The training is just too tiring. And what do you mean 'not half as bad'? I'm a great cook. Next time expect your food to cook by itself because I am NOT doing it for you."

"Don't you dare, Bakagami."

"Try me."

"Tchh. " His lips broke into a smile. The little fights they always had. He didn't dislike it at all.

"Aomine."

"What?"

"I want to eat Maji burger. So bad," his voice came out as a plea.

"Oh really." The blue-head smile just turned into a full blown smirk. "I just ate that for dinner."

"You bastard."

The rest of the conversation was filled with Aomine's commentary on the burger he didn't actually eat, how delicious it was, other heavenly foods in Tokyo tastes like and the scowling of a jealous soul at the other end of the line.

DAY 10

He fast-forwarded his life, leading it to the night. Tossing and turning in his bed, he waited. He flipped open the phone, looking at the screen – 3 A.M. and it was already Thursday. But the call that he was waiting for never came. It was probably a few hours before dawn that he finally fell asleep, because the last thing he heard before shutting himself into nothingness was footsteps going down the stairs and clanging of utensils from the kitchen that was probably his mother's.

DAY 11

The blue-haired ace tried to catch some sleep he had lost the night before at his hiding place – on the rooftop. Of course if anything could go wrong will go wrong – Murphy's Law never failed.

"DAIIIIIIIIIII-CHANNNNNNNNNN!"

Aomine rolled his eyes and shifted to his side, facing away from the owner of the voice that was halfway up, climbing his sacred hiding spot.

"Neee Daiii-chan!"

"I'm sleeping. Go away."

She let out a big breathe as she slumped herself next to him, happy with the effort she had made by successfully climbing up the water tank. Not paying any heed to what Aomine had told her priorly, she proceeded to shook him by the shoulder while speaking gleefully.

" Ne ne Daii-chan~ Tetsu-kun called me last night!"

Aomine shut his eyes in vain. So they did get to use the phone yesterday.

"He told me all about the ordeals they had to face there – the harsh training, the gross food, the 5 minutes call they get to make as a reward for working hard the entire day and a lot of other stuffs. I can't help but feel sorry for them. But most importantly...do you know what this means?"

Momoi didn't even bother to wait for Aomine replies because she knew she'll never get one.

"I think Tetsu-kun is finally reciprocating to my feelings! He called me, when all he has is the precious 5 minutes he could use to call his parents or anyone else!"

Numbing himself to whatever causing a dull ache in his chest for quite a while now as well as the out of control pink-haired girl, he blacked himself out. He came back to consciousness when the sky was filled with shades of orange, signifying the time to go home.

.

He thought his misery being bugged by other people for the day would end with Momoi; apparently he was wrong. Kise emerged out of nowhere when he was walking his way home. He tried to pretend he didn't see him and hurriedly walk through another path, a long way to go back to his house but he didn't mind as long as he could escape the blonde. It was futile. A smaller arm grabbed his from behind before walking side by side with him.

"Aominecchi! You take the long route home to avoid me, right? I know you saw me!"

Aomine sighed in defeat. "No I didn't," denying was an option he picked because explaining himself would be irksome. They walked for quite a distant before the copycat brought something up.

"Ne, Aominecchi~ Do you think Kurokocchi hates me?" Kise played with his fingers, twirling his left index finger with his right.

"Why should he be?" yawned the blue head lazily.

"Because he didn't call me last night!"

Aomine step was halted for second before he resume walking. He averted his gaze at a couple of elderly walking across the road before looking up at the darkened sky. Again, with this talk. Why did everyone try to cause that dull ache to become more severe?

"Oh right – of course you don't know. Kurokocchi's at this extreme training camp and they got this 'special' reward of – "

" I know," replied Aomine short to stop the long blab from the other male that was already raising his eyebrows, probably wondering from where he got to know about it. "Satsuki told me." He didn't feel like sharing the fact that he had been receiving end of the privileged calls himself, only by a different person.

"But he has been calling me every day. But last night," the model eyes gleaming with tears threatening to fall.

"It's because Tetsu called Satsuki last night," huffed the blue-haired male flat. "So stop overthinking."

Really, he felt like he could use the advice for himself.

.

Aomine stared at the lit-up phone next to his pillow as he lay on his bed in the dark room. Purposefully letting it be for one whole minute, he picked it up and answered the call without saying anything.

"Aomine?" enquired the voice that belongs to the red-head at the other end of the line.

Aomine grunted as an answer.

"You're mad at me." It was a statement.

Aomine refused to admit that it was true. But that was not case.

"Why the fuck should I be," groaned the tanned teen. He hated the fact that the mask of facade he was putting on were torn off by Seirin's ace, little by little.

"You're definitely mad. I'm sorry."

"I fell asleep on the dinner table last night. Too tired."

"Hmmmm," hummed Aomine simply as a reply.

"How was your day today?"

Aomine was annoyed. He felt irritated. Something kept of stirring in his stomach every time he remembered the red head had not called him the day before. He then mentally kicked himself for acting like a clingy high school girl when her boyfriend forgot to reply her texts or calls. And Kagami couldn't help but act the part, asking crap like how did his day went on, making casual conversation to comfort his sulky partner.

"Nothing much. Stuffs." Still couldn't get rid of the irritation after his own mind assault.

The deafening silence filled the air. The red-haired male heaved out a breath, sighing heavily.

"Seems like you don't feel like talking to me tonight. I'll call you again tomorrow."

Not putting up any hope in getting any reply from Aomine, he bid the blue-haired teen good night and hung up.

DAY 12

It was one of the rare occasions where he felt like he needed to think, to clear up his mind that was only clouded by basketball before. So his solution, the best one he could think of – was by playing basketball.

After more than a week, he visited the court he frequented almost every day since 3 months ago. To play basketball he usually plays. Together with that idiot. The redhead that had been stirring something in him since his absence. He dribbled the ball halfway across the court, pushed himself backward with a little jump and shoot.

'Who is that man?'

'Kagami Taiga.'

The ball went in. He reflexively jolted forward at almost the speed of light to regain the ball and shoot again from behind the hoop.

'Now who is he to you?'

'A friend. Wait, no. An enemy.'

Another goal scored. As soon as his feet touched the concrete floor, he dashed his way towards the ball and threw it from a distant.

'But you don't think about your enemy all the time.'

The ball went round and round around the ring before letting itself in.

'It's because he's a good enough enemy, dammit. Probably worthy enough to be called my rival, the one with possibility to beat me next to me.'

The bluenette jogged to pick the ball up, and stood behind the free throw line. Slowly he lifted it above his head, mentally calculating his aim before slowly letting go for a shoot.

'You get angry when he didn't call you. And that's not what rival does on daily basis.'

The ball banged against the hoop ring.

'Shut up, brain.'

It bounced off without a score.

.

"You feel any better tonight?" asked Kagami as soon as they greeted each other.

"I was sleepy yesterday. That's all."

"Yeah right. Like I've just known you for a day or two. You can't fool me, Ahomine."

"Whatever, Bakagami," Aomine snapped for letting himself be so transparent.

Silence crept in and Aomine could hear the sound of the red head breathing from where could be halfway across Japan. It sounded so sexy. He shuddered at his own thought.

"Kagami." He firmed himself.

"What?"

"Why do you call me?"

"Eh? What's with the strange question?" the redhead sounds puzzled with the subject prompted by the bluenette.

"Just answer and be done with it already, dammit." He sprung up from his bed and walked towards the window. The full moon looked so nice and round that night.

"Geez, don't be so cranky so late at night. I guess because I don't have parents to contact to assure them that I'm still alive after all these hell I've gone through because of that Kagetora old man." He took a moment to pause before resuming. "I don't want to waste the so called reward so the next logical step I could think of ... was to call you. I don't know. I think it is the right thing to do."

Aomine shut his eyes to process the answer. "I see."

"If you think I'm a nuisance, I'll stop," his voice was weak and defeated.

"No, you're not," Aomine exhaled. " But I want you to stop calling me."

.

It was the longest two days Aomine had ever felt – each minute stretching slowly, deafening ticking of the watch seemed to make him feel worst. He told Kagami to stop making the phonecalls, and he did just that. So why did the unsetteling feelings in his gut still remain the way they were? It was in fact more worst that he first actually felt. He felt devastated – for making such selfish request without ever reasoning it out with the good-intentional red head.

It wasn't the feeling of sorry, or guilt; that made he took a train ride across the town on Sunday evening with plastic bags filled with burgers and drinks in his hands. It was something else, probably something that could only be explained by seeing Kagami face to face. It wasn't a guaranteed solution to sort things out, but Aomine felt it was the right thing to do. If what he think was right, the boy would probably be spending his time at the basketball court; to play more basketball after coming back from a harsh basketball training camp even though he could collapse from being too tired. And there he was – because he is a basketball idiot, after all. Just like Aomine himself.

"Yo."

The red head turned to face Aomine after he did a dunk. He planted his feet firmly on the ground before walking towards the bluenette.

"Ossu." He raised his eyebrows, greeting the ace of Touou.
"Maji burgers. For you." He raised up his hand a little, showing the content in the plastic bag to the other male.

The usual straight grouchy face he had that turned people into fear meant nothing when a wide grin plastered on it. "Thank you, Aomine."

Both of them sat in the middle of the court, eating silently next to each other under the night sky blanketed by hundreds of visible stars. Both of them faced the goal post, with the light from the streetlight illuminate the surrounding just enough for them to see what they were eating. Aomine was done with three, but the same thing did not apply to the older male; still going on strong munching his probably seventh burger at the time. He gazed at his side profile as he eat, not caring a shit about anything in the world when he got those burger in his hands. The red-haired male didn't realize he was being stared at for so long until he needed to unwrap another burger to eat.

"What?" his eyes narrowed in confusion over the blue-haired ace's fascination in watching him eat. Kagami didn't wait for an answer, though; putting the burger straight away into his mouth right after the question.

"Nothing," Aomine shook his head. He exhaled slowly before closing his eyes and leaned his head on the redhead's shoulder. "I miss you."

He could feel the older male stopped munching. A soft thud was produced as he felt something heavy hit his head with gentle and precaution. It was Kagami's head.

"Idiot."Aomine could imagine a smile played out by the red-haired boy. "I miss you too."

This was probably the answer that Aomine was looking for. There should've been a deeper explanation for things he had been feeling these past weeks – but for now, he was content with this. Whatever this thing was, the one that sent his heart into erratic beats when he was with him and the dull torturous ache he felt when he was not around.

It was a long shot. And Aomine knew if it was with Kagami, it should be worth it.

END

...

This fic is kinda inspired by Kelly Clarkson's song entitled Long Shot ( /watch?v=SqaIM9JBs9o )Well, at least the ending is.

So what do you think? PM/review/favourite, whatever. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do in writing it. Thanks for reading! :)