MBP: First things first... Italics: Miho's present thoughts. Normal: Flashbacks. After ()~()~(): Ryou's POV

Rini: Cool! We own nothing! And ignore any non-canon stuff because this is fanfiction and it wouldn't work!

Kio: As always... w-we hope you enjoy!


Unrequited

It wasn't like I really cared about him. I wasn't really interested in any boy at all. Yes, I liked the gifts and the attention, but I didn't want a relationship. I was in high school, during what should be the best years of my life. I liked to fawn over the good-looking ones, and I definitely enjoyed the challenge of making them notice me. I know it seems wrong, but I was a ditz, a fan girl of the most extreme kind, and I admit, I was selfish. I don't know if I ever grew out of it…

"Who's that?" Miho pointed, hearts forming in her eyes. Her friends, well-used to this, didn't react too wildly, with the exception of Tristan who reacted wildly when Miho paid attention to any male. His crush on her was obvious, same as it was very clear that Miho didn't return his feelings in any way beyond friendship.

"Ryou Bakura. You… oh that's right. You were out sick yesterday, so you don't know. New student. Our class," Tea was always the one supplying all the good information and Miho would jump on it. As soon as Ryou came in, sitting just two seats behind Miho, she was on it.

"Hi!" Miho was already there, chirping away about herself and asking questions she got very short answers to. The cold attitude didn't diminish her cheer, though her interrogation did end when the others came over and started a conversation around her.

Over the weeks, she kept trying to get his attention, trying to make Ryou pay attention to her. He was cute, much like Seto Kaiba had captured attention, but Ryou had this air of mystery around him that was more appealing. Finally, she managed to get an invitation to his house… along with everyone else.

Not that it mattered much; it was at least progress. And it only got better from there as Ryou became a part of their group, one of their friends.

And Miho got full access to Ryou because of it.

I don't know when I started actually caring about Ryou. Honestly, he wasn't anything like my type, except for being very attractive. The mystery and challenge went out of it once he joined our group, but I didn't realize until later that it hadn't changed much. I still went after him, flirting and trying to engage him with me more than ever. It was as if I just slipped into a hole, and I couldn't for the life of me get out of it.

"Miho's hungry! Ryou, let's go out!" Miho grabbed Ryou's hand as soon as he opened his door, giggling at his shocked expression. It didn't matter how often she did this, it never failed to amaze him or amuse her.

"Let me… shoes!" Ryou managed to pull away long enough to put on shoes before Miho started pulling again in her eagerness to move.

Miho pointed in a random direction as their destination, as she had before. "This way Ryou! Adventure and food!"

She had a thing about going off without a plan, and calling it an "adventure". No one really went along with it anymore except for Ryou, who would just smile quietly and let her chatter on at him.

Miho paused, realizing that Ryou was the only one she even wanted to go on adventures with, a little disturbed at the thought. When had he gotten so close?

"Miho?" Ryou questioned, stopping next to her when she frowned slightly as she thought.

What did it matter? If he was close, that was a good thing, right? Miho looked up at grinned at Ryou, giggling quietly. She'd just keep her thoughts to herself this time. "Miho wants to go this way!"

And so another adventure began.

But I guess Ryou didn't feel the same way. I was just the eccentric friend who spoke in third person like a child. He was in love with another girl… completely unattainable, considering the situation. It only figured that Ryou would like someone completely sweet and gentle, like him. I couldn't even hate her, seeing as she was my best female friend. Only female friend. That's probably the moment I grew up… realizing this wasn't a challenge I could win.

How could he love Tea? Wasn't it totally obvious that she had feelings for Yugi that were returned whole-heartedly? Yes, she was a sweet girl, nice, and would be dedicated to whoever she was in a relationship with, but she was taken!

But how could she blame him? It wasn't as if she herself was a catch. Loud, obnoxious, annoying… the only boys who liked her only really liked her looks. Even Tristan couldn't come up with actual traits about her that he liked besides that she was pretty.

It was sad, only being liked for being pretty. Miho blinked, forcing herself to be selfless, to comfort the boy she thought she might be in love with, and fled the house at the first opportunity.

Tea called her that night, asking if she'd like to hang out with everyone the next day. Miho sat up on her bed, wondering what she was supposed to say. Everything was different now. Could she watch Ryou watching after Tea while she was obviously with Yugi? Could she be the same as she was before?

"Miho…" No, she wasn't a child anymore, and she wasn't going to act like it to get the attention she knew she was craving. "I can't. Sorry!"

I didn't just stop hanging out with them. They were my friends, but I couldn't watch Ryou pine over the girl he couldn't have. So I made a few changes. Grew up, tried to take other people's feelings into account, stopped speaking in third person… that threw everyone off for the longest time. Ryou asked me if it was because of what he'd told me, but I told him no. I even confided in him about how there was this boy I was interested in but he didn't like me back. He didn't even realize I was talking about him, but thought it was someone else. I even said I was trying to get over him by accepting a date with someone else, in the hopes it might help.

"Are you sure about this Miho?" Ryou was overly concerned, like he always was when he thought Miho might be up to something. "If you like someone…"

"He likes someone else, so he won't like me," Miho almost stumbled over her words, not quite used to not using her name instead of other pronouns. "Besides, it was just a crush. I'm… I'm fine."

Miho frowned in the mirror at Ryou, who had shown up before her date, trying to talk her out of it. "Really. And what about you?"

Ryou flushed but didn't say a word, which was enough of an answer for Miho. Raising as much courage as she could, she stepped forward, touching her hand to Ryou's cheek gently. "You're a nice guy Ryou. And it's sweet of you to worry…" (And painful! I don't need your kindness; I'm trying to get over you!) "But I'm fine. So go home, watch a movie, do something. Okay?"

Ryou still didn't say anything, but he did smile half-heartedly. "If you're sure…"

Miho nodded, her heart breaking at how easily he was letting her go and do this, feeling it shatter when he walked out the door and away from her.

Years went by before we ever had a confrontation about our relationships. Ryou claimed to be over Tea, but ended up having feelings for every other unattainable female possible. I continued my search for someone I could care for, with mixed results. Sometimes they were really nice guys, other times… well, not so much. I never had a relationship last more than two months, though none of the break-ups could be considered horrible. Most of them were even mutual as I helped set them up with girls they ended up being serious about. We could have some terrible fights over it, how I settled for less and he was trying too hard not to be happy. We'd have a fight every few months after that, but we'd be fine after a few hours to let the steam blow off. We were always close, even if it wasn't the way I wanted it to be.

Now 24, and single once more, Miho sat at home on Friday night, watching a horrible anime since she hadn't grown up that much. She could still fan girl over hot swimmer boys that would take off their clothes whenever they see water if she wanted to!

She picked up her phone without bothering to see who was calling. "Hello?"

"Miho?"

"Ryou!" Miho sat up straighter, cursing her heart for racing at the sound of his voice. She wasn't some high school girl anymore, obsessing over unrequited love, but the traitorous organ couldn't understand that! Besides, she was mad at Ryou! "What do you want?"

Because if he asked for the moon, she'd jump at every opportunity to get it for him. "I'm… are you at home?"

That question normally was followed by "Can I come over?" or "Can we talk in person?" and Miho didn't feel like dealing with that right now, though she had to remind herself that she was mad.

"I'm…" Lie! Lie like a rug and be smart! You can't deal with him condemning yet another break-up, because you'll lash out with your broken heart. "I'm home right now. Do you want to meet up?"

He did want to meet up. There was a coffee shop not too far from my place, walking distance, so I told him I'd meet him there. I'd get there with plenty of time to prepare myself, and we'd make up like always, he'd pay for my coffee, and all would be well. We'd go back to this friendship which could be torture, but I'd still have him in my life. I'd learned that 'no Ryou' was worse than 'watching Ryou love someone else'.

I was crossing the street when I felt something collide into me, and my body fly in the air. The last thing I saw before falling and my vision fading, was Ryou running towards me from the crowd, pulling me into his arms as he yelled for someone to call for help.

()~~()~~()~~()~~()

It wasn't supposed to happen like this! Ryou sat in the hospital for hours, dreading the worst, having seen the injuries. He had just… if he hadn't called her, if he'd just gone to her house like he'd planned…

He'd known Miho had broken up with her latest boyfriend. He would never had told her how happy that fact had made him, but he knew that she was always dejected after a break-up. And he thought maybe this time…

The maybes had started back in high school, back when he'd told his first lie to Miho and said he'd liked Tea. He always thought, maybe I can tell her now, but something always got in the way.

Then Miho started dating. That first date, when he went to her house… why didn't he say something then? He should have just told her, instead of letting her go… but how could he? It wasn't as if she liked him, not when she'd just said she had a crush on someone else.

But then he never said anything, but invented crushes on people he could never have so he wouldn't have to make a move. And each time Miho was single –and her ex's all got significant others- he would try to tell her, only to lose the courage every time.

And where had that gotten him? Nowhere, and now he might lose Miho forever because he was a coward, and too selfish to just let her go and leave.

But he couldn't leave now. He'd never been able to leave, because despite his best efforts, he loved Miho and always would.


MBP: Okay, that's done. It kinda hurt to write. Because Miho being serious, but being Miho is hard. Plus, I'm sick, so if you see mistakes or think she's... you know... not quite as ditzy as usual. But seriously, can someone be that... well, that dumb? I think not, but this is just my little spin. You don't have to agree.

Rini: Shh sickie child. Go to sleep. Anyways, please send in a review and let us know what you think!