Pairing: Seto Kaiba & Tea Gardner/Anzu Mazaki (AzureShipping)
Disclaimer: I don't own Yu-Gi-Oh.
Tea's shoes squeaked against the clean tile floors, and the rhythm of her quick footsteps echoed in her ears. Her eyes were dead set on her destination—the staircase on the other side of the corridor. Please be there, please be there, she repeated in her head over and over as she made her way through a crowd of hungry high school students.
Due to her recent case of insomnia, she had decided to take advantage of long lectures and algebra class by catching up on sleep. Now, carelessly, she had slept through nearly half of her lunch break. She made a mental note to scold Joey and Tristan for not waking her sooner, but alas—she couldn't blame them. After all, it's not like they knew about her secret rendezvous with the Kaiba Corp CEO. Okay, so it wasn't exactly a rendezvous. She liked to think it was though.
Without realizing it, Tea had broken into a sprint. She could hear a teacher holler something along the lines of "no running in the hallways!" However, she had no intention of slowing down.
"Sorry!" she gasped, uncertain as to whether or not the teacher heard, but she didn't have time to find out. The brunette skidded to a stop once she arrived at the foot of the stairs, almost losing her balance and tumbling over. Without wasting another moment, she rushed up to the rooftop.
Tea caught sight of a familiar tall and thin figure standing directly in front of the metal fence. She gripped the railing to catch her breath, relieved that he was still there. Kaiba turned his head slightly to look at her from the corner of his eye. He didn't say anything even if he did seem to be to a bit curious as to why she was out of breath—although not curious enough to question it. She casually walked up to his side, as though she hadn't run up a couple of flights of stairs just to see him.
They were both silent, but it wasn't anything new. There were times when they just stared at the sky and the buildings below without exchanging a single word. The two had been meeting like this for the past few weeks. After Tea had gotten fed up with Joey and Tristan's pointless arguing, she came to the decision that perhaps she'd be better off having lunch alone on the rooftop for a while. She had never expected to bump into Kaiba.
Most of the time, it was her doing all the talking and Kaiba would just listen absentmindedly, occasionally popping an insult towards Joey. There were times when she wouldn't say anything at all since she worried about annoying him. But what made her excited was when he talked to her. Sure, it was always about his duels and victories—but he'd get this glint in his eyes. His enthusiasm for dueling always awed her. The way he spoke about it, he could almost convince her that he was capable of ruling the world with his deck—and damn it, she wanted him to. She wanted him to rule the world, and she would be his queen.
After a while, the silence started to make Tea feel awkward. She wondered if Kaiba felt the same. She peered at him cautiously. He was staring at the cars going by, obviously lost in thought. She admired how he kept his uniform buttoned-up neatly unlike most of the other boys in her class.
She decided to break the silence with a question she regularly asked. "How's Mokuba doing?"
A soft breeze passed through her hair, and she held a hand up to push a few strands away from her face. She felt nervous—she couldn't help it; he had such an aura of authority. Plus, the fact that he wasn't saying anything didn't make her feel any better. Was he mad at her?
Visiting Kaiba everyday made Tea feel like somewhat of a traitor to her previous crush. There was no denying that Yugi was a good guy, but her feelings for him were complicated. For now, she decided it would be better if they remained friends. With Kaiba, it was different. Sure, he wasn't exactly the nicest guy around, but Tea knew he had a heart from what she'd seen of his relationship with his brother. She had never bothered to get to know the teenage CEO until recently, when by chance, they started talking. Yes, he was power-hungry, obsessive, and rude. However, he was cunning and even a little mysterious. She wanted to see more of him—more of who he really was. He gave her a thrill in a way that Yugi could never.
That led to the question of whether or not she was really falling for Kaiba or if it was merely lust. But damn it, she didn't care. He made her heart pound!
"I don't understand why you waste your time with them," he said all of a sudden, not bothering to look at her. His voice was hoarse with a hint of jealousy.
Of course he was talking about Joey, Tristan, and Yugi; he absolutely despised them.
"They're my friends…" She looked down at the buckles on her shoes. "Just like you."
It was the truth—she valued her friends, but she felt a little childish saying that around him. Tea didn't have the courage to look at his face because she had a feeling he'd be smirking his usual smirk. Kaiba wasn't saying anything and it was driving her mad, so she couldn't help it—she glanced at him for a split second.
She was right. He was smirking. But it wasn't the good kind of smirk. It was the you're-such-a-fool kind of smirk. And maybe she was a fool. A fool for considering him a friend, but she didn't care. She was aware that Kaiba was beginning to get annoyed of her 'friendship speeches', and yes, she knew he was bound to get irritated by her barging in on him during lunch everyday… But the truth was: he had yet to say anything about it, and that alone gave her a glimmer of hope. He was such a blunt person. There was no way he wouldn't complain about her presence unless he actually didn't mind it. Maybe he had formed some sort of attachment to her—perhaps he even enjoyed her company. Or maybe he thought she was beautiful. What if he liked her? Of course, this was just her fantasizing. She knew that even if that were the case, there wasn't a chance in hell that Seto Kaiba—in his right mind—would admit it.
"Is that why you keep coming here?"
"Yeah, it is." Tea rested the palm of her hand against the fence. "And you don't like that, do you?" She felt Kaiba's cold azure eyes on her.
"I don't," he simply said. "You're a nuisance."
She felt her heart sink. She knew he didn't like her, so she shouldn't have gotten as upset as she did. Even so, she wasn't going to allow him to just stand there and humiliate her in such a nonchalant manner.
"Well, if that's how you feel, then you might as well stay away from this place." Tea tried to keep her voice steady which was proving to be quite difficult—his dominating presence made her weak. She pulled her hand away from the fence and accidentally brushed the tip of her fingers against his. She hadn't realized he was standing so close! He didn't seem to like the skin-to-skin contact seeing as he immediately folded his arms across his chest as if he had just touched a poisonous snake.
"I was here first."
"Yeah, but I like spending my lunch breaks up here on the rooftop! Since you find me to be such a bother, you should just stop coming here because I'm always going to be here." By her voice alone, one could tell she was hurt, though she aimed to mask it. She had too much pride; she didn't want to show weakness in front of this jerk.
He shot her an intimidating look. "Alright," he said before turning to grab the briefcase placed a few feet behind him. She watched him begin to walk away, immediately regretting the words she had just spoken. How could he up and leave like that so easily? He was heartless!
She bit her lip and gave the fence a light kick, causing it to rattle. Let him go, she thought. He's not worth it.
"Kaiba!" she called out.
He stopped halfway to the door.
"Isn't it obvious why I come here?" The question was out of Tea's mouth before she had time to register what she had just implied.
Kaiba was completely still. He turned his head somewhat, as if he were about to face her but instead decided not to. He continued on his way, apparently indifferent to her words.
She cursed at herself. She hated herself—hated herself for falling for such an arrogant, smug, self-centered jerk. Even when she practically confesses, he just walks away! She was never returning to this rooftop. Never.
At least that's what she thought until somehow, Tea found herself making her way up to the rooftop the very next day. Part of her hoped—prayed—that her heartless jerk would be there. Besides, she couldn't just let him walk off after being so rude. She was going to give him a piece of her mind.
She gasped when she arrived. Her prayers had been answered. A tall and thin figure in a neatly buttoned-up uniform stood in front of the fence, his hands in his pockets. A gray briefcase was located not too far behind him.
"Kaiba? Why are you here?" She hurried to his side.
He glanced at her before returning to his sky-gazing. Silence. Kaiba was beginning to irritate her. He had the nerve to come back after what he said and then ignore her.
"I thought I was a nuisance," she sneered as she played with the hem of her skirt, "or whatever."
Tea glared at him. He seemed to be smirking—only a little though. What was so funny? Had he been toying with her this whole time? She placed both of her hands on her hips. "Hey, look at me when I'm talking to you! Why did you come here?"
He sighed. His blue eyes locked with hers.
"Isn't it obvious why I come here?"