I Completely rewrote this story, and the other chapter will be rewritten as well, which I deleted the other and re-uploaded this. Sorry for the inconvenience.
This first one-shot is cliche-dly called, "Notice Me":
No matter how quiet and expressionless he is and tries to be, Kuroko Tetsuya can't seem to escape from the spot light of his new-found popularity. No matter how loud or cheerful he is and tries to be, Kise Ryouta always seems to fade back into the scenery eventually. All the bluenette wanted was some quiet time to sit and read his books. All the blonde wants is to be noticed by him in a way that denotes something other than friendship. Soon, one of these two would get what they wanted.
Rating is K, and also, KnB does not belong to me in any way.
Today, it just so happened that Kise Ryouta's life would change in an extremely dramatic way, yet he wouldn't know how and why until after it happened.
Kise hurriedly grabbed his bag off the couch and made his way outside.
Before he left the house, out of obligation he yelled, "I'm going now!" The sound of his mother chirping to him, "Have a nice trip! Be careful", sounded back before he could completely shut the door.
He walked down the cracked sidewalk, ear buds in while humming and whistling to his favorite songs–a common habit for him. The usual route consisted of passing by a small neighborhood that was home to a kingdom of stray cats, an ancient-looking, abandoned house two blocks down, and the thin river that ran nearby. In just past fifteen minutes or so, he reached the gates of his school, Teiko High, a public institution–prestigious as being public allowed–that had a rich history and considerable test scores.
His first class of the day would start somewhere late in the hour, but he had come to school early for a specific reason.
The blonde skipped through the halls and up the stairs, quickly locating the school's library and sliding open the door, all trying to make as little noise as possible. He walked past the sci-fi novels, the reference books, classic literature and the manga to the end of the spacious room. Sun light was beginning to shine strongly through the windows, so he waited for them to adjust before moving on, seeking a certain shock of blue–
"Aww, You're so cute, Kuroko-kun!" Kise heard girl's voice exclaim.
He made a detour past the library's shelf of cook books (why they were there, Kise was unsure) to walk towards the source of the sounds and squeals he was starting to hear. He came upon a scene he'd become used to over the last few months: a small assembly of girls, one which grew with the passing minutes, surrounding his best friend (self-proclaimed) and love interest (secretly self-proclaimed), Kuroko Tetsuya.
Said boy sat on a chair, pocket novel in hand with girls all around him, crowding him and badgering him to give them some time of his day.
"Umm, I would appreciate if you could refrain from be shouting; this is a library", the subject of their adoration replied to them monotonously, shutting his small book and standing up. "If you are not currently searching for any reading material, please respect those who are and try not to make much noise."
"But why?" a girl with a slightly nasally voice whined, "There's no one in here anyways, so we're not bothering anybody."
"I apologize if I come off as rude, but I, myself, am trying to finish this book because it is due soon. Therefore, I am being disturbed."
A couple of the girls, mostly freshmen, busied themselves trying to look good by going around and grabbing random books from the shelves. More than several times, they would ask Kuroko for his input, and he would give serious suggestions and reviews about them. If these ladies were people who were actually earnest in their reading endeavors, Kuroko would definitely be the right person to ask. Being on the library committee, he handled them diligently and had read nearly a fifth of the archive since first year; the count was still rising.
"Don't be like that Kuroko-kun! You're alone in a library with a lot of beautiful ladies, don't you get excited or something?" a pigtailed brunette commented to reply to his last response.
"I do not think about those types of things", Kuroko replied to her sincerely, staring with his usual wide, almost-unblinking eyes. In Kise's opinion, his honesty and innocence were two of the best things about him.
"Ahhh, why are you so pure?", another of the girls mock-sighed, hand to her heart as she leaned back in a dramatic fashion. She added on, "Maybe you should try being a bad boy or something for once. I bet you'd look really good in leather."
"Kurokocchi is cute the way he is…", Kise mumbled out loud, though even when he was right next to the group, no one seemed to hear a word he said. He spent some time scooting and weaving around them so that he could get closer and greet his blue-haired friend, who was also trying to navigate the throng of females.A girl who had a few inches on the blue-haired teen raised a question to him that made all the other occupants of the room, Kise included, perk up curiously. "Speaking of which, are the rumors true that you haven't had your first kiss yet?"
Kuroko blinked once, and stayed quiet for a couple of seconds. The haggle of fan girls around him watched him with anticipation, and it wouldn't be too far off to compare them to sharks surrounding a wounded, bleeding diver. "… Yes", the teen replied after a good five-second silence, a bit of uncertainty lacing his words; it was the truth, but he was a bit fearful of what the outcome would be–and with good reason too.
The females in the room practically exploded, all of them squealing and trying to make up excuses for the blue-eyed boy to give them a kiss, or to kiss him themselves.
"I haven't had my first kiss either. I'd be really happy if we could give each other ours", one shyly–or slyly–said, shifting on her toes and trying to lace her fingers with his, though she was pushed away by others.
An upperclassman offered with a suggestive gaze, "If you want, I can teach you, Kuro-chan."
"It's my birthday, can I have a kiss as a present?"
"Hey! Unfair! It's not even your birthday!"
Among them, Kise's favorite might have been, "Kuroko-kun~ I need CPR."
In the commotion, a gaudy looking girl struggled her way to his front and grabbed the young man's shoulders. She started leaning in towards his lips with hers, which were covered in some kind of raspberry-colored gloss. Kuroko wanted to escape, but there wasn't much space to maneuver and this girl had a very strong grip. Soon, her puckered, fruity lips were only two or three inches away. Metaphorical exclamation marks were flashing red in the blonde's mind.
"YOU CAN'T!" Kise yelled as loud as he could, yanking the shorter boy forcefully out of the girl's clutches. They both tumbled backwards on the ground, Kise making contact with the rough carpet of the floor and Kuroko cushioned on his stomach.
The blonde sat up and gave the older boy a shy little smile, "I'm here to rescue you, Kurokocchi." Laughing nervously, he quickly lifted them both and grabbed Kuroko's hand to pull him behind a library shelf.
"Hey… where did Kuroko-kun go?" one of the girls questioned soon, finally noticing the absence of their idol.
Another girl, the one who had tried to steal a kiss, raised herself from the ground as she too had fallen in the scuffle. "I don't know! He was there just now, but he suddenly disappeared!"
On the other side of the room, the pair of males found their way to the library's front desk; there wasn't enough room for both of them to fit beneath it, so Kise just crouched next to the chair, trying to be inconspicuous. It didn't matter though–they wouldn't see him. For once, he was glad about that.
The girls searched the general area for the pale boy, though none thought to look behind the desk as the only way to get over was to have the side-door key or to jump over (the method the pair had chosen). They also didn't think Kuroko would hide from them. In most cases, the bluenette wouldn't–he was very gentlemanly in that way, after all.
But that was most cases, and even though he didn't outwardly show it now, he was actually a bit disturbed by the fact the girls were being so beastly over something like a kiss.
Thinking back to the last few months, he was extremely confused as to why and how this kind of thing had started to occur. One day someone in his class had approached him and made a comment about how blue his eyes were and how fluffy his hair was. The next, a group of them invaded him class during the lunch break to talk to him. They were scared off by the arrival of his friends from his middle school basketball club.
He wasn't even sure where Akashi had been hiding those scissors.
Since then, whenever he was alone they would approach him flirtingly. Many of the times, if they weren't asking for a date, they propositioned how much they wanted him to cross dress or model for them or some other activity he didn't quite understand. In short, he became a sort of idol for them.
Just recently, they had even started to come early to school when he did, because he was part of the library committee and often volunteered for morning duty. Thanks to that, he didn't get his usual hour or so to read in peace. Mornings were usually his tranquil time until the rest of the day when he had classes and homework, and sometimes, dragged along by his friends to play basketball or Shogi or arcade games (he virtually always lost, but he was commendable for trying).
While Kuroko was thinking, the girls were clamoring. "Should we check the roof or the courtyard or something? Sometimes he's there when he wants to read."
In a few minutes, the girls finished their search and, after a general consensus of where to go next, they left the library.
Kise breathed out a loud, relieved sigh when the final girl walked out the door and slammed the sliding door shut. Kuroko did too, though a lot less noticeably and exaggeratedly than the other.
"Hello, Kurokocchi!" The blonde sang as said person crawled out from beneath the wooden structure. Kuroko nodded and gave a flat, "Good morning, Kise-kun", back to him. A few seconds later he also added a polite, "thank you for helping me just now".
Even if it was just an off-hand afterthought, the blonde beamed happily at the stoic boy's words, glad to be of assistance to him. He thought he even saw the hint of a smile on the other's face, which only made him more ecstastic.
In the time they'd been hiding, Kise had been having his own little flashbacks and thoughts, though his were as to when he'd somehow fallen for the petite (or at least incomparison to him) bluenette.
It was probably the fan girls who had finally opened his eyes to it though.
In the beginning, when he'd first met the slightly older boy, he had admired him for being so easily surrounded by school mates with such dominating auras. Such people included: Akashi Seijuurou, the charismatic captain of the school's Shogi and Go Teams; Aomine Daiki, ace of the school's basketball club; Midorima Shintarou, the student council's Vice-president, and more. It wasn't that the shorter boy actively sought them out; something about his personality was what drew them to him, and was why he and they had been friends ever since middle school.
When Kise thought about it, hanging around this group of friends was probably a big part of why the ladies flocked to him –besides the fact that he was just too adorable for anyone to resist any longer (in Kise's mind).
When the girls started coming was when he realized he was jealous of them. Partially, the envy went to Kuroko for being able to attract so many around him, but most of this was directed towards his close friends. Like Momoi for being able to openly declare her liking of him, or his friends he'd been in the basketball club with in middle school (though they'd become Kise's friends too), and the fans for being able to get so comfortable around him so quickly.
Right now though, he was content with what he had.
They had first encountered each other when Kuroko was passing handouts to the class in the beginning of the year. Kise had expected to be skipped over like he usually was when he'd been in middle school, but instead Kuroko had walked right up to him and placed the thin sheet in his hands.
Their next meeting was when Kise had been at the library one morning, trying to waste time since his more mischievous older sister had played a cruel trick on him and set his alarm to ring an hour early. He had walked in and saw the bluenette reading alone at a table (at this time, he hadn't yet been discovered by the school's female population).
Thinking that first time must've been a fluke, he whisked past his blue-eyed classmate towards the corner with the manga. He was pleasantly surprised when the other had uttered a small greeting in his direction.
Unable to contain his curiosity about the smaller boy, he had continued going to the library before school started each day. The small "Hello's" turned into a recent detail of their lives or a pleasant, light-hearted conversation. Soon, the pale boy had introduced him to his friends during the lunch break. After letting them get over the initial shock that he had been standing there next to them for ten minutes without their notice, they quickly became friends thanks to his out-going personality–something he'd developed in an attempt to not completely fade from people's views.
Later on, he learned that the only one of that group who had known he was there was Akashi, and though Kise respected him, he had to spend a long to get comfortable under the redhead's sharp, calculating gaze and wry grins.
Anyways, about a month after Kuroko and Kise met, they even started to hang out after school–a privilege Kise had only gotten to experience whenever he was remembered by his junior high school classmates. Sadly that wasn't very often since he just seemed to blend into background, even with all his cheerfulness and smiles. The companionableness he's adopted hadn't really worked in school. It was better at home, because there, his family acknowledged his existence and loved him in the way only family can. He didn't need to try so hard, and he didn't.
It happened that, after graduating the ninth grade, Kuroko was the one who'd found him–who'd pulled him out from the deep, hopelessly desolate rut he'd fallen into and couldn't find a way out of, even when he climbed and clawed with all his will. He made Kise feel like he wasn't alone. He made Kise know he wasn't alone. Unknowingly, he also made the blonde feel special, and happier than he'd ever been perhaps throughout his entire life.
Hhe felt like he couldn't ask for anything more than this.
Kuroko noticed him.
Maybe not his puppy-dog crush–but he noticed him.
Months into their friendship, Kise realized he was no longer pretending to be excited and cheerful all the time. His efforts were more subtle now, because Kuroko accepted people for who they were. He broke down the walls, and by this time was when the younger teen found that it was one of the reasons people flocked to him.
Unlike the fan girls who had recently discovered him, however, Kise tried not to make his growing love for the bluenette apparent and just played it off as a joke whenever the two accidently brushed their hands together. Or as friendly skin-ship when Kise purposely touched the other. He could still never hide his staring or occasional blush though, which Kuroko would sometimes catch onto and inquire about, and he'd give some half-assed excuse about how he was just spacing out or there was something on the smooth skin of Kuroko's face.
Inside, the big blonde wanted nothing more than the pull the shorter boy into a tight hug and just stay like that the whole day, or to monopolize all his time some other way, away from everyone and everything else in the world so that Kuroko would only be able to see him.
I could just spend all day staring at Kurokocchi...
Sooner or later, he was sure these emotions would overflow and he'd implode one day. He was trying everything he could to prevent it, or at least prolong it. He didn't want to risk losing someone precious to him, especially one such as the boy standing in front of him–the one with the beautiful kindness and aquamarine-hued eyes.
He'd probably be disgusted… Well actually, Kurokocchi is too kind for that. I don't want to him feel bad about it or awkward around me though. Aominecchi and Akashicchi would probably kill me if they knew about this. But still, he's just too cute~
"Kise-kun", Kuroko called to the other again. The honey-eyed teen snapped out of his thoughts and directed his attention back to Kuroko, who took a step closer to him.
"Your face is a bit pink. Are you okay, Kise-kun?" Though he didn't sound very concerned, Kise was sure he was, considering his personality and the fact that they were good friends.
"I'm alright, Kurokocchi. It's just a little bit warm, that's all", the blonde replied in a gleeful tone, trying to assure the other that he was, indeed, fine.
Pale fingers reach up and cupped Kise's forehead, and under the touch his face flushed from light pink to red.
"I-it's just the heat", he sputtered, taking a step back away from the cool appendages–not that he wanted to but he really didn't want Kuroko to find out about his feelings and things like blushing were pretty damn high on the list of "things not to do because you'll look like a flaming homosexual."
Kuroko stared at him blankly before mimicking his movement in a forward motion and gripping onto both his wrists. Kise could feel the sweat starting to form on his humid fingers. Even when he tried to pull away, the blue-haired boy wouldn't retract his grasp, instead holding on even more stubbornly.
"Umm, my hands...?"
"Kise-kun, I am worried about you. You look very unhappy right now. Did I do something?" the smaller boy asked, shifting another few inches closer.
"No, it's not you it's…"
Under that scrutinizing yet caring gaze, Kise had to avert his eyes and stare at the wall with all his concentration, not bothering to finish that sentence.
"Actually, you keep having this sad face whenever you think I am not looking."
Has it been showing that much?
"K-Kurokocchi! Please let go", Kise begged, trying to free his hands again, but Kuroko was holding on hard enough that he was sure it'd leave marks that'd take hours to fade away.
Even though his head was turned away, Kise could tell Kuroko was looking at him. Sure, that was what he had wanted, but not like this. He absently played on the thought that the other knew about his feeling the entire time, and was purposely doing things like this that made his heart swell and pound bitterly at the same time. Of course, Kuroko would never do such a thing and he knew it.
The blue-haired boy sounded like he might've been angry when he firmly declared, straight towards Kise's ear, "I will not let go. Not until you tell me why you have been acting so strangely lately."
But I'm afraid. Kurokocchi is… Kurokocchi is everything to me. I really wish you'd actually never let go. I wish I could stay with you forever.
The last part of his next sentence fell into a hushed whisper, and even to his own ears it wasn't convincing even in the slightest; the taller boy, in a final attempt had pleaded, "There's nothing wrong with me, so you… Kurokocchi can let go now".
Please don't let go.
Despite the fact that his heart seriously couldn't take any more of this, the irrational part of his mind was telling him to screw the logic, screw the fan girls, screw the world, and just let his feelings escape the confines of his erratically beating chest and out his mouth.
"Kise-kun, please tell me why you are crying."
He hadn't even felt the first tear fall. His face felt too cold for that–too numb. After the first drop, another followed. Then another. They fell in silence, and soon, two thin streaks of salty water were sliding down his cheeks without end. This was something he especially never wanted Kuroko to see.
It was the one time he wished the other didn't notice him.
"Do you not trust me?"
The blonde could feel the other's smaller hands loosen their hold and smiled through the drops freely cascading down his cheeks. "I'm sorry,Kurokocchi. It's just that I", he found he had nothing to say after that. "It's just really nothing. Could you leave me alone for a little while?"
Could you forget any of this happened?
Kise stepped away from Kuroko in long strides, hoping to get far away from here. He could hardly stop the occasional sobs from escaping his breathless lungs. Did Kuroko know by now? It wasn't often that one man would blush and cry in the presence of another in such a random way. Would Kuroko still treat him kindly? Would they still be friends? Could they–
The train of thought was left unfinished as the pale bluenette rushed at him and pushed his back onto one of the library's wooden shelves, arms on both sides of him so he couldn't escape.
After rubbing his head which had bumped against the bookcase, Kise looked down and was surprised and anxious about what he saw.
Kuroko's usual, apathetic stare was replaced by what seemed to be a bright, flaring anger, sharpened and boring back into his with only conviction and determined intent. The corners of his eyes were slightly wet, and Kise wasn't sure if it was the anger or something else causing it.
"Tell me", he repeated, voice even more commanding than what Kise could possible imagine from Akashi or Midorima. It was low, almost threatening, and it almost stripped away his willpower with the sheer tone that invaded his brain; he considered giving in. But he didn't.
"If I t-told you", a much-needed intake of breath interrupted, "you'd hate me."
His honey-yellow eyes darted around frantically, at anywhere and anything but Kuroko. As much as he wanted to run away, he didn't have the will to push the other away and hurt him. He'd rather be hated than hurt him. If he did hurt him, he would deserve to be hated.
But it felt like Kuroko always knew the right things to say at just the right time, because he replied with something that felt so inviting; so comforting and yet heartbreaking.
"Kise-kun, it is impossible for me to hate you."
"Kurokocchi… I really can't! I just can't tell you!"
I'm really sorry…
Out of nowhere, Kuroko's arms reached up and gently encircled Kise's neck, though he wasn't that tall so Kise had to be pulled down a bit. The blonde's legs, which were trembling and shaky and weak, finally gave way and the two collapsed onto the floor for the second time that day . Kise let out an involuntary whimper as they fell.
After they slid down, Kuroko, who was on his lap, placed his knees on either side of the taller boy's legs to make sure he wouldn't try to bolt.
Kise put his head down and shut his eyes, trying to concentrate on anything but the blue-haired teen in front of him. He was afraid to face the other.
"Kise-kun. Open your eyes. Look -", Kuroko paused in the middle of his sentence and said more softly, "At me."
Maybe I should… I think Kurokocchi knows by now. He probably doesn't want to hurt my feelings. I don't want this to be the last time but…
The blonde hesitantly lifted his head and chanced a glance upwards, and the view in front of his caused his throat to run dry and breathless once more and his eyes to widen in disbelief.
Kuroko was… crying. Just like Kise, silent tears were now falling freely from his eyes–some even on to Kise's face that was looking up at the bluenette's. He bit his lip. Even now when everything was in turmoil, Kise found that Kuroko looked adorable, but that tears didn't suit Kuroko.
"I do not know if you know, but I have always been watching you–ever since we met. I am not sure how or when, but… I know that… I like you, Kise-kun".
His eyes were begging for a response that didn't come. His teeth clenched and his eyes shut tightly. He looked vulnerable, just like how some associated him as being fragile like sand or porcelain; though in Kise's mind, Kuroko was the strongest person he had ever known, so seeing him like this now made his heart clench painfully to the point where it was hard to even try to breathe. He had to reply, but his voice wasn't cooperating.
The weight lifted from his lap, and he through the thoughts running in his mind he could hear Kuroko starting to get up and turn to walk away. One thing Kuroko hadn't expected was that today would be the day he confessed to Kise. The second thing he didn't expect was to be pulled back into Kise's lap for the third time that hour, and to be enveloped in his warm arms.
"Let go of me."
This time it was Kuroko's turn to plead and have his request denied.
The blonde shook his head, which was buried in the bony curve of the other boy's shoulder. "No, I'm the one that's sorry."
"You know, Kurokocchi, I don't see you as just a best friend. You're beautiful and I get jealous easily because everybody likes you, and because you're kind to everybody in return, not just me. You love reading and animals and vanilla milkshakes–especially those– and I know that because I've been watching you too. You never lie or cheat or do anything bad, even if you like to tease me a lot sometimes. There's no one that could replace you because you're the best in the whole world so please don't leave me!" he spoke all in one breath. His lips quivered just as he finished his last part. He couldn't help but chuckle and added, "God, what a lame confession. That did not come out the way I wanted it at all."
He released his hug to let the other turn around and studied the bluenette's face–especially his mouth which had curved up into a small, noticeable smile. He was, as always, lovely.
"We are both idiots, aren't we?"
Kise smiled too. "Yeah", he mumbled, too enraptured by the other to give any other response as he used his thumb to wipe away the leftover droplets still sitting at Kuroko's eyes. As he thought; Kuroko looked much better without the tears. That thought was only affirmed further when the sapphire eyes opened again and gazed into his.
The clock on the wall showed there were only fifteen minutes until class started. "Can we skip class later?"
The older boy seemed to ponder it for a moment, but the answer was still ultimately, "no."
"Heh. I thought you'd say that".
Kise loved hearing his Kuroko say his name.
"I love you."
The bluenette grabbed the blonde's collar and pressed his lips innocently against his. They weren't quite as soft as Kise had imagined in his dreams, though this realistic chapped, dryness told him that he was, in fact, not dreaming or hallucinating in any way. As abruptly as it came, it ended.
Kise's face burned brightly now, but how could it now when he'd just been rewarded with the love of his life's first kiss?
Unfair! That's really unfair, Kurokocchi.
He hid his reddened face in Kuroko's shirt, listening to the shorter male's heart which was beating just as erratically as his was. He wouldn't have known since it didn't show in the other's face. Into the smooth fabric and soft folds of Kuroko's summer uniform, he mumbled out the words he'd been wanting to say all along:
"I love you too."
Thank you for reading~