Author note: This is my first story that ever sees the light of day and idk I'm kinda dying of nervousness orz;; I'm usually more the artist type than the writer type but this is something I just had to do because the whole thing was right there in front of my eyes after I finished episode 7 ahhh.
Sorry for occasional weird English, it's not my first language. Enjoy!

I'll never swim with you again. Never.

Who would have thought those words blurted out in his thrill of victory would lead him here in the end. Standing in Haru's living room, a frown firmly set on his face as he stared at the screen of the phone in his hand. You need to check on Haruka-senpai, Gou had written him. He stopped coming to school and won't talk to anybody. Please, Oniichan.

Well, couldn't be that bad because now the bastard didn't even have the decency to be home after he had gone through the trouble of showing up here. The house was deserted even though the door had been unlocked. The guy had some nerve.

With a snippy huff he contemplated on just leaving again – because really, how awkward would it be if Haru found him in his house upon coming home – but something let him halt in his steps. The same reason that had brought him here in the first place – the memory of Haru's face when he had delivered him those lines. And suddenly another thought struck him. Maybe...

Without thinking Rin made his way back out of the house, down the stairs, rounded the next corner and slowly made his way through the bushes and trees that hid the little beaten path from the mainly used alleys around here. He found that nothing much had changed from back then. Maybe except that everything appeared much smaller now. When they were kids he had slipped through the greens here quite often. At the end of it you had an open view on the ocean and that was where Haru would always sit on top of the group of small rocks and stare out at the water when he sulked for whatever reason.

His face twisted into a scowl again, he was an idiot for thinking Haru would still do that even now. But the next moment he reached the glade and paused. For real, on top of the rocks sat a familiar figure, legs tucked up to his chest to curl into a little ball. The sight suddenly made his body feel heavy. What was the idiot doing?

Hesitating just for a moment, he regained his composure, buried his hands in the pockets of his tracksuit pants and stepped forwards. "Yo.", was his simple greeting but Haru's head snapped into his direction frighteningly fast. "R-Rin?!"

Rin was frozen to the spot. Haru looked horrible. He seemed worn out, like he hadn't slept in days, his eyes were red and swollen and God... had he been crying?

His mouth opened but no sound left his throat, maybe because of the nasty sting he felt in his chest.

Haru knitted his eyebrows and turned his head away and Rin stared on the ground. Suddenly he realized he had come here without any plan of what to say. He wasn't even sure what he had expected to find but this was certainly not it. Something inside of him wanted to turn and run away but something else got the better of him and made him slowly and awkwardly sit down next to the dark-haired boy. Haru adjusted his curled up posture and sat up straight as if he suddenly felt uncomfortable with it.

The following silence between them stretched for a good ten minutes. Rin seemed to hear his own heartbeat pound in his ears, next to Haru's strangely audible and not quite regular breathing. Just what on earth was going on here?

His thoughts overturned. Was Haru upset about losing? The guy hadn't cared about times or winning all his life, Rin was painfully aware of that. Had it really been his words that had caused this? Why? Haru had pushed him away all the time since they knew each other, no matter how hard he had tried when they were younger, Haru remained a fucking block of ice and kept reminding him what a pain he was to him. Shouldn't he be glad he finally got rid of him?

Time passed and Rin wasn't sure whether he had been waiting for the other to speak up but by now there were no doubts left it wasn't going to happen. Rin took another nervous breath. How was he supposed to say anything when he didn't have a damn clue what was happening?

"What is this all about, dammit.", he finally broke the silence with a low hiss before it crushed him completely. But knowing the other, he wasn't hopeful for an answer. Instead he could see out of the corners of his eyes how Haru turned his head even further away.

Any other day Rin would have long snapped by now. But something about the way the usually unnervingly stoic boy didn't seem like himself at the moment paralyzed him. It felt like Haru was about to break by the tiniest wrong movement and Rin could tell as much without even having looked him in the face for a second time since arriving.

"You know why I had to do this.", he suddenly blurted out because he could no longer stand the stress this situation put on him. "Why I had to beat you to move on. You know about my dream and how I owe this to my dad. You know how much I hate that you waste your talent and still always were better than me. If I can't even beat someone like you, how could I ever-" Rin noticed his hands clench into fists on the rock he was sitting on and how the anger and the frustration slowly crawled back up but before he had a chance to go on, he was suddenly interrupted.

"I know."

The sound of the voice let the tension leave his body in an instant. He had never heard that bland voice so broken. His head darted in Haru's direction before he knew and when he met the other's blue eyes it felt like his breath was being knocked out of him. This expressionless, unreadable face he had never understood... was overflowing with emotions. And Rin's heart almost stopped because of all the sadness he saw in those eyes.

"H-Haru..." It hit him like a thunderbolt. It was his fault. It were his words that had broken Haru like this, nothing had ever been so easy to read from this face. He cared for him. Haru cared for him.

"Forget it." He was cut off again. Haru broke the eye contact to turn his head away again and his voice was low and sad, so goddamn sad it ripped his heart out and he didn't even know why exactly. "You're free now, right? You can move on."

"Not anymore.", he mumbled under his breath. This was not a sacrifice he had been prepared to make for his dream. The internal battle against his pride was almost painful at this moment but when Haru looked at him again and there was a glint of hopefulness in his eyes, it was decided.

Rin swallowed and with a pounding heart he struggled to not let his hesitation show when he reached his hand out to grab one of Haru's. He was so nervous he was scared Haru could feel him shake, so he squeezed the warm hand gently before he managed to find his voice.

"Tell me. I can't read your damn mind like Makoto does, so... tell me."

I could but I don't want to rant too much at this point, so... opinions? (;-;) -sweat-