Disclaimer: I do not own the characters in this story they belong respectfully to Tadatoshi Fujimaki

Warning: Themes of shounen-ai/yaoi/homosexual relationships and whatever, you know all that good stuff, some mild OOC-ness… If any of this bothers you then you have the option of not reading.

Music: "I Would Do Anything for You" by Foster the People

A/N: This is a remix for chapters 172-173 and it's also a thank you fic to the wonderful readers from No Pain, No Gain. I'm really happy to have gotten such wonderful response and encouragement to write more for KiKuro so here is a oneshot before I go back to finishing my AkuRoku series (': Think of this as a companion piece to No Pain, No Gain if you will and a little warning for you, it has some dark moments but it's not too heavy (in my opinion).

Oh! And before I forget, I couldn't reply to two reviews because they were guests, so I'll just do it here! :D

Neko-tan: Thank you! I'm really glad that you loved him and yes! Here is another Kikuro fic! I'll do my best to continue writing more for them! (:

Anonblackcat: Thank you, I'm really happy that you enjoyed it. Haha, its hard not to imagine Kagami having off days because after seeing how weak he is against Nigou, I just couldn't help but make his life even more hilariously miserable. And yeah! That was the idea, a kame hame ha ignite pass! 8D Yup, yup! I will definitely write more for Kikuro, don't you worry!

And now, please enjoy Cherished! :D


"I believe in you, Kise-Kun!"

Despite the ridiculously loud cheers from the audience surrounding him, from the numerous basketball shoes skidding and squeaking across the slick court along with the orange basketball and to the pounding of his heart beating in his chest—it's Kuroko Tetsuya's voice that rings the loudest amongst all of the noises encasing him within the space of the gymnasium.

Kise's golden hues widen at the realization because it is no mistake that it is the powdered bluenette who shouted down at him from the stands above. His voice is firm and crystal clear, and the thought of Kuroko going out of his way to project his voice so loudly in order to encourage him instantly takes over the blonde's mind.

When he turns around towards the spectators behind him, Kise's eyes search frantically until his gaze leads him up the rows of seats to the phantom player who is standing tall and regal—blue eyes furrowed and burning with a passion unlike any other that Kise had ever seen him wear before. Kuroko's expression is hard but he is confident as he stares down at him and there is not a trace of doubt, nothing at all on his face to betray the words he cried out to him. He truly does believe in Kise and that is probably what pushes the blond to move forward and play the game once more with an even greater confidence in his movements.

'This is for you, Kurokocchi!' Kise Ryouta's mind screamed as he gets himself into a familiar stance and inexplicably, he performs Midorima Shintarou's famous three pointer shot flawlessly.

The blonde's sudden bout of energy last's five minutes after that—but five minutes is all Kise needs in order to access his perfect copy drive and beat Shougo Haizaki fair and square. Kaijou wins with seventy-five to seventy-two. It's a miracle that they managed to pull through in the end and they openly celebrate in a team cheer. But both Kise and Kasamatsu, however, seem to be the only ones who know the real reason as to why the blond model suddenly transformed into a beast and the answer is obvious on Kise's face as he looked back up into the stands to lift his fist up into the air at his former teammate turned boyfriend. Kuroko stared down at him from his perch, smiling proudly and in turn, Kise grinned as he threw his head back and laughed out loud.


Kuroko stood outside of the Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium against the wall, waiting ever so patiently for Kaijou's Kise Ryouta to rendezvous with him. The two had agreed to meet up after he was done freshening up from his match with Fukuda Sougou High and after waiting for a good fifteen minutes, Kuroko could only imagine the amount of work Kise was doing in order to look presentable for him. Whether he was still sweaty from the game or clean as a whistle, Kuroko would have honestly cared less since he himself was in no better condition after having gone up against Yousen High. But Kise was a model; it was natural for him to want to make an impression so Kuroko didn't hold that part of his personality against him too much as long as he didn't start making a habit out of being late.

Throwing his head back, Kuroko stared up at the darkened sky. Admiring the faint twinkling stars, he knew that he didn't need a watch to tell him just how late it had become. Even though he enjoyed the scenic tranquilly that the night presented him, Kuroko wasn't exactly very fond of the idea of having a late night dinner. It would more than likely disrupt his already small eating pattern, that much was certain but the more Kuroko took the time to ponder on the notion, he closed his eyes and smiled as he imagined Kise's beaming face. The blond was probably just as hungry as he was but he knew the model's appetite was still nothing in comparison to Kagami's stomach of a black hole.

'Maybe it wouldn't be such a bad idea,' he finally thought to himself. Taking a quick glance at his watch, Kuroko quickly decided that he was willing to make an exception for tonight since the thought of having a celebratory dinner with Kise for both of their successful matches was too good to pass up. However, since it would indeed be considered a late dinner, he had to make sure that wherever and whatever they were planning to dine on would be light.

Looking back up at the sky, Kuroko remained somewhat oblivious to his surroundings and it would have stayed that way until Kise's arrival if it had not been for Shougo Haizaki's sudden appearance. The powdered bluenette's reaction was slow in comparison to Teikou's violent ex-regular as Haizaki made a beeline towards him and wrapped his hands tightly around his throat. He didn't know what was happening until his terrified blue eyes stared up into a pair of angry narrowed ones and it was even more frightening for Kuroko since it was a rare occurrence that his presence was ever taken notice.

"Well, well, well—look what we have here?" The larger teen sneered.

"H-haizaki…" Kuroko gasped. "R-release me!"

"Why should I? It's because of you that I was humiliated by your copycat boyfriend!" Haizaki shouted, his fingers tightening even more around the smaller teen's neck before a ruthless smirk slowly spread across his face. "Since you're so important to Kise, how about I mess you up? That outta teach him a lesson…"

"You're repulsive…" Kuroko wheezed as he tried to glare at him but he was continuously met by Haizaki's taunting smile. "Don't you dare touch me!.."

Walking them backwards until he had Kuroko's body pressed up tightly against the wall so as not to escape, Haizaki released one hand from his throat and began to reach for the edges the smaller teen's sweatpants. "Oh but I will, I'll touch you however I want and there's nothing you can do to stop me. Heh, I wonder? Has he already gotten his hands into your pants? If not, I'd be more than happy to pound your ass into the wall first. I bet you're real tight too." The silverette said as he licked him from the side of his face to the start of his hairline; making Kuroko squirm even more with disgust.

When Kuroko felt the other's fingers brush against his lower regions, his body stiffened almost instantly. Haizaki was a man of his word and was even more so, a man of action. As he rested his hand atop of the bluenette's thigh and slid his fingers open until they grazed his inner thigh, the thought finally hit Kuroko that the other teen wasn't just spurting out petty words to scare him—he really was planning on violating him and he had no shame about doing it whatsoever.

Hearing Haizaki jeer with delight, Kuroko vaguely registered his sweats being tugged down as his mind became flooded with fear and guilt. For him, time was at a standstill and memories of Kise—of the two of them together, doing all sorts of intimate things from holding hands, hugging and kissing to making love flashed across his mind until finally, Kuroko visualized the sincere expression that Kise only ever gave him and no one else. He couldn't help but become angry now and there was absolutely no way in hell that he was about to let Shougo Haizaki take advantage of him in order to hurt his beloved boyfriend—not now and not ever.

"How dare you…"

"Hm? What was that you said?" Haizaki arched a brow.

"No one is allowed to touch me except Kise-Kun!" Kuroko finally managed to scream.

The bluenette's outburst more or less shocked the silverette but he quickly recovered and smirked again as his overconfidence blinded him with power. Feeling amused, Haizaki was just about ready to yank the bluenette's boxer's down altogether had it not been for a sudden jab to his gut and before he knew it he doubled over in pain. The Ignite pass quite literally took the breath right out of him and because of it his hold on Kuroko's throat loosened.

Seeing his chance to make an escape, the bluenette scrambled to get the other teen's hands off from around his throat. But once that was settled, it was frightening slow for him to try and make a getaway when his sweats were still pulled down to his mid thighs. Yanking them messily back up, Kuroko just barely managed to take two steps forward before being dragged back by the ends of his hair.

"You little fucker!" Haizaki screamed. Gripping a handful of sky blue tresses, he yanked on the strands viciously, bending the teen backwards until it left the bluenette crying out from the pain.

"Kurokocchi!" Kise shouted from a distance and seeing the blond headed straight towards them—Haizaki could only grin wickedly in anticipation which Kuroko glimpsed at from the corner of his eye.

The moment Kise heard Kuroko's cries, dread was instantly painted on his face and he ran with all his might towards the two silhouetted figures by the wall. It wasn't difficult to see that Kuroko was quickly being put into a choke hold and once he saw who it was on the other end—the one hurting the bluenette; the blond just about lost all rationality.

"Haizaki, you bastard!" Kise clenched his fists tightly as he screamed at the top of his lungs. Glaring almost murderously at the other teen, Kuroko realized that he was playing right into the silverette's hands.

"No! Kise-Kun, don't!"

"Ku-kurokocchi!" The blonde's eyes widened with disbelief. Stopping himself midway from throwing the first punch, Kise's jaw dropped.

"If you punch him, you'll risk getting in trouble! You can't let your team down!"

"Quit talking!" Haizaki pressed his arm even tighter against Kuroko's neck until he had the bluenette winded and gasping almost desperately for air.

"I don't care about Kaijou if it means that I have to watch you get hurt!" Kise retorted and that all but left the bluenette wide eyed in shock at the blonde's insensitive outburst.

"K-Kise-Kun—ahh…" Kuroko clawed at the other's forearm.

Seeing Kuroko struggling so hard to breathe and on top of being told not to save him, just left Kise torn inside. "Stop it! Stop hurting him! Let Kurokocchi go!"

"Oh, I'll let him go. After I'm through with punishing him for trying to run away from me!

"No!" Kise screamed and at that moment everything became a sudden blur to him when Aomine unexpectedly stepped out onto the scene. The next thing that Kise saw was Kuroko falling forward and in less than a second, the blond was already there to catch him as he pulled the smaller teen into a tight embrace.

When Kise looked up again with Kuroko tucked away safely in his arms and no longer in any immediate danger, he found the Touou ace towering over the now unconscious assailant. Speechless, he flinched just slightly as Aomine turned around to face them.

"Is Tetsu alright?" The darker bluenette asked.

Looking down at the smaller teen, Kise brushed a few strands of sky blue hair from Kuroko's slightly redden face. Watching him slowly open his deep blue eyes, he was relieved to find him slowly smiling up at him despite breathing so heavily.

"He's okay." Kise sighed, his hand falling to cup the smaller teen's cheek.

"Good." Glancing back down at their former teammate, Aomine's eyes narrowed again. "Fuckin' bastard, I swear I'll kill him next time he thinks about laying a finger on Tetsu ever again."

Hearing this, Kise's expression fell. Aomine really did save the day and him? He was willing to do the exact same thing but the powdered bluenette wouldn't let him get involved in a fist fight with Haizaki. Remembering Kuroko's words suddenly made him upset if not angry now and unintentionally his grip on the smaller teen's body tightened. It wasn't fair, he thought to himself as he bit his lower lip—it just wasn't fair.

Glancing briefly up at the blond teen, Kuroko noted how Kise's demeanor changed so drastically but he continued to keep it to himself, at least until they were alone again.

"Thank you, Aomine-Kun." Kuroko said weakly as he gave his former light an appreciative smile.

"Don't thank me, I just couldn't stand by and let you get hurt."

"But still, I'm very grateful to you for coming to the rescue."

"Yeah, yeah whatever. Just try not to get into any trouble again because I might not be there to save you guys next time." Aomine said as he clicked his tongue and shoved his hands into the pockets of his jacket.

Upon seeing Kise's dejected expression, Aomine could understand that his presence was now becoming a hindrance to the couple. Though he would normally pull Kuroko away on any given day—just to spite the blond for managing to win his shadow over, the situation was thick with tension that was shared only between Kise and Kuroko. Being a third party/by stander, there was really no need for him to continue being around them and to be quite honest he was willing to do anything to get out of what would probably be a troublesome lover's quarrel.

"Guess I'll take my leave now." Aomine commented awkwardly as he rubbed the back of his neck. Walking a couple steps backwards pass the pair, he turned on his heel to face forward again and slowly trekked towards the entrance gates. Lifting his arm up, he gave them both a wave goodbye without glancing back. "You better take care of Tetsu, Kise! Or else I'll be coming after you next pretty boy!"

Seeing Aomine's figure shrink until he was well out of sight, Kise adjusted the powdered bluenette in his arms until he managed to stand up again whilst carrying Kuroko bridal style. He didn't say anything as he began walking in the same direction as Aomine and it made Kuroko feel all the more nervous and uncomfortable with the blonde's unusual silence. Even so, he understood why Kise was being so reclusive; he couldn't blame him after what had just happened so Kuroko stayed just as silent as he did.


Kise carried Kuroko from the gymnasium all the way back to his apartment. Not once did he utter a single word but neither did his beloved Kurokocchi say anything either. He struggled to unlock the door once they were faced with his apartment and though the smaller teen was trying to make it easier for him by squirming out of his arms to free his hands from carrying him any further—Kise refused to let him go. By the fifth try, Kise finally managed to get his front door open at long last and once he got them inside and locked the door behind them, the first thing he did was plop them both on his couch in the living room.

Kuroko continued to bask uneasily in the silence between them. It was easier that way but knowing Kise, he knew it wouldn't last forever and so he sat in the blonde's lap with great anticipation in mind.

When he finally noticed Kise's amber eyes darken slightly, it nearly stunned Kuroko when he realized that he was being shifted down slowly onto his back with Kise staring down at him from above. His gaze was truly intense and it was quite rare for him to look at Kuroko in such a way unless it was on the basketball court. It made Kuroko feel even smaller than he really was but the bluenette countered it with his own blank stare and slowly he wrapped his arms around the blonde's neck.

Kise could see the darkened imprints left behind on Kuroko's neck from Haizaki's assault. It was more than likely to look even more gruesome than it already was by tomorrow morning and seeing the developing bruises under the light made him feel even more upset than he initially was at the beginning. It truly wasn't fair but then again life wasn't always sunshine and daisies.

Closing his eyes, he leaned down slowly until his lips brushed gently across Kuroko's throat. He felt Kuroko stiffen slightly beneath him and that too sent a pang of sadness throughout his body but just as quickly as the bluenette became nervous from the contact, he relaxed once Kise began laying soft butterfly kisses around his neck. It was wishful thinking on Kise's part but at the very least, he hoped that his gentle caresses would be enough to sooth his beloved boyfriend after having experienced a near traumatic incident.

Reveling in the blonde's shy kisses around his neck, Kuroko closed his eyes and sighed lightly before finally whispering the blonde's name. "Kise-Kun…"

Kissing his collarbone, Kise stopped to rest his forehead against the other's shoulder. "Kurokocchi…" he murmured back, his voice quivering slightly.

"Kise-Kun?" He said again, only this time there was concern laced in his voice. Unable to get any further response from the blond haired model, Kuroko's worry grew.

After what seemed like a long time, the blond still refused to look up at him but Kuroko knew from the heavy droplets that were falling against his skin that Kise was crying and he did not want him to see how weak he was. Not knowing what to say, Kuroko began stroking the ends of his blond hair as he closed his blue eyes again and hummed softly.

"You're so cruel, Kurokocchi… how could you expect me to just stand by and watch as Haizaki did this you?" Kise asked as his fingers grazed the bluenette's graying neck. "It hurts, it hurts so much inside…"


"No! Kurokocchi!" Kise shouted as he finally lifted his face up and glared at him through the tears in his eyes. "Don't ever ask me not to protect you ever again! I-I don't think, I don't think I'll be able to handle watching you get hurt a second time…"

Hearing the blond whimper as tear after tear rolled continuously down his cheeks, Kuroko couldn't help but feel as though he were being washed away by a sea of guilt for causing him such internal anguish. Squeezing his eyes tightly, the smaller teen slowly brought the other's face down until their lips met in a raging kiss. The response was instant the moment their lips touched and everything became natural instinct as Kuroko moaned softly and opened his mouth for Kise.

"I'm sorry." He gasped through their open mouth kisses, his hands moving until they held the blonde's face. Brushing the pad of his thumb against Kise's cheek, he wiped away the trail of tears before leaning up to lick his cheek of the salty liquid.


"I'm sorry." The bluenette said again. "Please, forgive me for hurting you."

"It's—it's alright now…" Kise's amber eyes softened. Sniffling a little, he smiled lightly and kissed his hairline as he rubbed his nose into the spikes of sky blue tresses. "But, next time you're in danger, don't expect me to just stand there and do nothing because I won't. Even if you ask me to, I won't tolerate Kurokocchi getting hurt like that ever again!"

For a moment, Kuroko's eyes widened and again he felt guilty as he was reminded of how fiercely Kise cared about him. He had prevented the blond from protecting him—from showing him how much he was truly loved and that hurt his pride, especially when he'd been upstaged by Aomine's timely arrival. Even though Aomine managed to save the day, Kise was there the entire time. He was a hero in his own right even if he didn't stop the onslaught directly like Teikou's former ace. Yes, he was a hero—Kuroko's hero.

"I understand, Kise-Kun." Kuroko replied, his blue eyes glittering now that they were filling with tears. "I'm sorry, I really am for not letting you protect me but I wanted to protect you too…"

"Kurokocchi…" Bringing their faces close together once more, Kise kissed him again and from there it became a blur as their bodies moved and clothes were being pulled off and thrown in random directions.


The next day was gray looking from what Kise could see after glancing briefly at the scene outside of his window. He wasn't too concerned about the weather though, even if it did look groggy since he was too busy being lazy and tucked away nice and warm in bed beside his physically exhausted boyfriend. For the last twenty minutes, he'd been doing nothing else except staring at his beloved Kuroko who was still fast asleep from what he could tell. It was probably creepy from an outsider's point of view, but Kise enjoyed watching him sleep because when he was awake, it was usually difficult to tell when the bluenette actually looked relaxed. Memories of last night were still drifting in and out of mind the longer he continued to gaze lovingly at him and Kise smiled just thinking about how sexy Kuroko looked when he had moaned his name just hours before.

"Why are you smiling like that? You're having dirty thoughts about me again aren't you?"

"Ah! Ku-kurokocchi! You're awake?"

"I've been awake for quite some time now." The powdered bluenette yawned.

"Oh, so then you've been faking your sleep this entire time?" Kise's mouth fell open.

Nuzzling his cheek against the blonde's bare chest, Kuroko shifted until he was able to hide his face from view but nodded in response nonetheless.

"Nee, I'm a little embarrassed now…" Kise pouted.

"You're embarrassed? Shouldn't that be my line? I'm the one that's being stared at and drooled over." Kuroko noted as his face grew hot. Luckily Kise wasn't laying witness to his blushing face and he planned on keeping it that way until he could calm down.

"Sorry…" Kise sighed. "Hey, your neck—let me see it."

"Hm?" Kuroko peeked up from his hiding place despite the dusty color of pink still apparent on his cheeks. Meeting the blonde's firm gaze, he sighed lightly and scooted back in the other teen's arms until he was able to give Kise a suitable view of his throat.

Kise's voice hitched slightly but he forced himself to continue staring at the result of Haizaki's attack the night before. Excluding the love bites that decorated Kuroko's shoulders; his neck was a deep shade of purples and splotches of blue and black. He could easily distinguish the fingermarks from the bruise that was certain to have come from the choke hold and he bit his lower lip tightly to try to keep it from trembling too much from the upsurge of anger that was beginning to bubble up inside of him.

Kuroko could tell that whatever Kise was seeing on his neck was the reason for his struggle to remain composed since the blond wasn't that difficult to read most of the time. He understood the internal battle he was having with himself though and to calm him, Kuroko cupped his face in his hands and gave him a reassuring smile.

"It will heal, Kise-Kun. You don't have to be angry. Soon, it will be free of Haizaki's mark—just give it some time."

"Kurokocchi…" Kise's golden hues fell closed. Leaning forward, he pressed their foreheads together and embraced the smaller teen around his waist as he brought their bodies closer again. "I love you, I love you so much."

Feeling the warmth of the blonde's body swathing around him, Kuroko's hands caressed their way down to Kise's shoulder's until he managed to pull his body back up slightly to wrap his arms around the other's neck. Pressing his lips softly against Kise's closed mouth, Kuroko smiled into the chaste kiss as he whispered back. "I love you too, Kise-Kun."

A/N: So much fluff at the end w Gahh! And now I'll be returning to my AkuRoku series, From Me to You since the fourth chapter is very overdue. I'm going to be hopping fandom's between Kingdom Hearts, K, Karneval and Kuroko no Basuke (hey they all start with K!) so I can't say when I'll write another Kikuro ): Kind of depends on the demand so right now, Kingdom Hearts and K is calling for me! Besides, I still need to write my fluffy sequel for my MikoRei story, I Want Your Love and a couple others as well.

I really hope that you guys enjoyed this! Please leave me some goodies behind to read later, it means a lot to me and I love hearing your guys thoughts (: so, until next time Kikuro shippers and readers, rock on!