Title: Maybe

Author: Haze

Disclaimer: I don't own Slam Dunk so don't sue me please.

Chapter Dedication: frozenfemale, Jo-sen7

SUMMARY:

Haruka, Maki's little sister, is one beautiful girl. But she has a serious character flaw that Maki Shinichi, a sticker for excellence, seems to tolerate along with everyone else in Kainandai High, a school known for excellence in both academics and sports.

She meets up with Sendoh and somehow, the two hits off a friendship that improves both their lives. But Maki discovers this and puts a stop to it. Why? It has something to do with a painful and destructive past that threatens to come back through Sendoh.

Will there still be a chance for both of them to find true love once more in each other's presence? Or will they just end up with bitter memories of a love that can never be?

Chapter 6:



Haruka had just arrived from her usual morning meetings with Sendoh. Maki was in the living room with Jin and Kiyota and were talking about the practice game they'll be having in the afternoon. Haruka entered and kissed them before going upstairs to have a shower and to get dressed up for her shopping trip with Miyuki and Umi.

Maki dropped them off before dropping off Jin and Kiyota in their homes.



While they were doing their shopping, Koshino saw Haruka and her friends and told Sendoh.

"Okay. We still have time to do as we want." Koshino said.

"So can we follow them?" Fukuda suddenly said.

"Wow. Fuku."

"I'm just really curious as to why you fall deeply head over heels in love with her each passing day."

"Yeah. I'm curious, too. So can we, Sendoh?"

"Fine."

They followed the girls secretly and noticed that many people - boys and girls, are turning their heads towards the gorgeous girls.



The girls tried on different attires.

Haruka would usually try on huge T-shirts, cargo pants and caps and would look at herself in the mirror with a wide smile on her red lips. But her friends would roll their eyeballs at her and would push her back to the changing room. She would frown while her friends looked happily at her whenever they forced her to try plenty of tubes, sleeveless blouses, spaghetti-strapped shirts, short skirts, micro mini skirts, and girly boots and sandals.

Finally, they came to a music shop. Her friends pulled her over to a keyboard but she went away towards the electric guitar section and finally towards the drums section.



A handsome guy was trying on the drums and noticed her coming.

"You play drums?" He asked with a smile.

"Yeah. Can I try?"

"Sure." He then handed her the drumsticks he was using.

Haruka played a rather complicated piece. The guy was so impressed at her that he insisted on buying her drumsticks.

Miyuki and Umi saw this and smiled to themselves.

"At least she's beginning to act like a girl."

"You're right Miz. At least she finally learned to hang out with guys that she actually didn't treat like her brother. And the guy is so cute." Miyuki smiled.



When lunch time came, Rukz pleaded her friends to hurry because she was 'starving'. The nearest food stop was McDonalds so they went in. They sat at the most corner table where the joined chair's resting part would cover them. Sendoh, Koshino and Fukuda sat at the table behind them and since the resting part of the chair was high enough to cover the girls, the boys were glad. They could eves-drop without the girls' knowledge.



After ordering their food, the girls began chatting over their meals.

"We saw you, Rukz." Umi teased.

"Saw me what?"

"Saw you with a very cute guy. He bought you something, didn't he?" Miyuki smiled teasingly.

"Yeah. He insisted. I couldn't make him change his mind."

"So what did he buy for you?" Miyuki said excitedly.

"Drumsticks."

"What?!" Umi and Miyuki exclaimed.

"That is so unromantic."

"Miyu, I don't care. It's not like he'll court me. Heck! I've only met him a while ago. Be serious. We just happen to play the same instruments. Drums, electric guitar."

"Stop it! I don't want to hear anymore about that so unromantic event or whatever."

"Geez. You don't have to be so upset, Miz."

"Huh! You are so hopeless Rukz." Miyuki frowned.

"Maybe we should just talk about some other things like who do you think are the handsome boys in the basketball teams of Kainan, Shoyo, Ryonan, and Shohoku that are free of girlfriends."

"Miz, don't ask me. I don't know anyone aside from Kainan players."

"Oh Rukz. Then maybe you should just listen to us so that you'll have an idea on how they look like. You'll never know when you'll meet them."

"Yeah you're quite right Miz. I wish some of them would court me."

"Dream on Miyu. Anyway, let's start from Kainan." Umi interrupted.

"There's Maki, Jin, Kiyota, and Mutou." The two chorused.

"Too bad for you two. You have to count out Mutou out of your list of cute boys who are available. He called me up the other day to tell me that Ami just said yes to him."

"What did you say?" The two said in unison.

"Congratulations! I am so happy for both of you! I hope that you two would last forever."

"WHAT?!" Umi and Miyuki exclaimed. "But he dates you, right?"

"He does. But that's only like a family date not to mention a time to talk about what he should do to make Ami like him. What did you expect me to say? He's just like a brother to me. Of course I'll be happy for him because he finally got the girl of his dreams. Besides, I'm so happy for him because I'm actually off the hook. I've been having a very hard time on helping him with Ami. Geez. Talk about him being persistent!"

"Rukz! Hello? Are you out of your mind? Never mind. Maybe you are out of your mind. At least there still Maki, Jin, and Kiyota." Miyuki said after she drank from her iced tea.

"Yeah. But both Kiyota and Jin dates Rukz so maybe we should move to the next team. How about in Shoyo?" Umi looked at her friends.

"There's Fujima and Hanagata." Miyuki said softly.

"Geez! Do you have to include Kenji?!"

"Oh yeah Miyu. I forgot to tell you that Miz and Ji-chan had a fight a month ago."

"Oh." Miyuki said thoughtfully.

"Don't ask me about it! Let's move on to Ryonan." Umi said with much annoyance in her voice.

"I think Koshino's very good-looking. Even Fukuda." Miyuki trailed off.

"AND SENDOH!!!" Umi and Miyuki chorused happily.

"He's so cute and I just love the way he smiles. He's gorgeous. If you see him Rukz, I'm positive that you'll melt for him." Miyuki was so thrilled.

"See who?"

"Rukz! Were you paying attention?!" Umi snapped. "Sendoh!! We were talking about the charming Sendoh." Umi said with irritation at Haruka's behavior.

"Oh. Okay."

"You are so hopeless, Rukz!" The two said simultaneously shaking their head.

"Never mind how hopeless I am. Just move to the next team already so we could finish with this dumb girly topic and move on with something worth my time."

"You are so hopeless. Anyway, in Shohoku there's this guy with an earring in one of his ears. Ryota Miyagi. Yeah, that's his name. And Miyu's twin brother, Sakuragi Hanamichi. And there's the MVP in Junior High, Mitsui Hisashi."

"Mitsui Hisashi?" Haruka cut off Umi.

"The world must be coming to an end! Rukz, the most hopeless girl in the world seems interested in someone." Umi kidded.

"He's a three-pointer, right?"

"Rukz, honey, are you alright? It's okay to cut the joke off now." Miyuki was really worried.

Haruka remained silent and looked as if she was thinking of some reason to get off what she had said.

"I'm alright, Miyu. He must be the one Chiro-chan's been telling me about whenever I praise his three point shots."

"You mean Jin Soichiro tells you something about Mitsui Hisashi?"

"Yeah, Miz. Chiro-chan's always telling me that I should see Mitsui Hisashi's three-pointers. I'm actually curious to see his games again. Geez! Chiro-chan's words are actually getting into my brain. This is not good!"

"Relax, Rukz. You just want to see his games. It doesn't mean that you'll fall for him if that's what you're so scared of." Miyuki just shrugged. "But what do you mean again?"

"Did I say that?" Haruka said, startled. "You must have heard the wrong thing. Anyway, let's continue."

"Yeah, let's continue. Oh yeah and finally." This time, it was Umi who trailed off.

"RUKAWA!!!" The two chorused again excitedly. "He's so handsome and so cool."

"Rukawa? As in Rukawa Kaede?"

"Rukz, you've heard of him." The two chorused.

"Er. Yeah. Okay. We're finally through? Thank goodness. So let's talk about other stuff now."

"Rukz! We're not yet through. Could you for once act like a girl?!" They both snapped at Haruka.

"Fine! Just stop glaring at me. The two of you! Geez! I can't believe that I actually survived hanging out with you two from the time we were born."

"Whatever. Okay. What will you do if any of the guys we mentioned courted you? That's the next topic."

"Miyu, could we talk about others things?"

"No! If you have nothing good to say, just don't talk."

"Aw. Come on Miz. Geez! I'm surrounded by totally insane girls!"

"So let's proceed. I think I'm totally going to freak out!"

"Me, too Miyu."

"What about you, Rukz?"

"I've nothing good to say, Miyu, so don't ask me."

"Aw come on. We were only kidding you."

"Actually, I was hoping that you were serious Miyu. You know I don't like sitting around and talking about other people I barely know."

"Come on. You promised that you would act like a girl for once. Prove it."

"Fine. Bring it on, Miyu."

"Okay. So what would you do if Kenji Fujima or Toru Hanagata courted you?"

"Ji-chan and Toru-chan? Geez! That's absurd! They're like my older brothers and you know that."

"Then it's my turn. What would you do if Soichiro Jin or Nobunaga Kiyota courted you?"

"Now that's the most absurd thing I've ever heard Miz. I've practically spend almost all my waking hours with Chiro-chan and Naga-chan as their little sister. I mean they've been like my big brother ever since I was two or probably younger than that."

"Okay. Last question. What if one of these guys I'll mention courted you? The guys are Miyagi Ryota, Hanamichi Sakuragi, Hisashi Mitsui, Kaede Rukawa, Koshino, Fukuda, and Sendoh."

"Wrong question, Miz. I can't answer that because I don't even know all of them that well."

"Geez! How could you act such a smart aleck all the time?"

"Simple, Miz. I let common sense come in first before any nonsense."

"Just answer us truthfully then! What do you really want in a guy?"

"Yeah. That's a right question Miz. Tell us Rukz."

"Truthfully? Well. I'm not exactly after a guy who's famous or something. I just want to be with someone who I can understand and who can understand me. Someone who I could still be good friends with even after we learn that we are not meant to be. If ever I go into relationships, it should be with someone who loves me for who I am and would help me mature up to be a better person. Tell me, Miyu. Are you happy with having a relationship with handsome boys who are only after the pleasures of your lips?"

"."

"No comment? I expected that. How about you, Miz? Are you happy with dating handsome guys who are more vain than you and who dates you because they can gain more popularity?"

"."

"No comment? I'm beginning to enjoy this topic. It seems both of you can't speak now. Relationships are not all about the kissing, hugging, and all those junks you know. It's something deeper than that and I think you two are beginning to realize that."

***RING (Ringing Tone: Ice Blue Eyes)***

"Excuse me." Haruka answered her ringing cell phone. "Hey. Ichi-chan. what's up? *pause* A game? *pause* 2 pm? Wait I'll have to ask them if they want to come. Hold on." She then turned to her friends. "Er, your Maki is asking if we would like to watch their practice game with Ryonan High later at around 2. He said that even Shoyo and Shohoku players could be there." The two just nodded. "Ichi-chan, we're coming. *pause* Okay. Bye."

***RING (Ringing Tone: Ice Blue Eyes)***

"Excuse me again. Chiro-chan, what's up? *pause* Fetch us? *pause* Yeah, we're still at the mall. *pause* Okay. Yeah. Wait for us. *pause* No need really. We can walk to you. *pause* Yeah I'm sure. Okay. Bye." Haruka turned to her still silent friends. "Chiro-chan is waiting for us at the mall's parking lot near the mall's entrance. Perhaps we should go now."

The two just nodded and picked up their shopping bags before following Haruka out of McDonalds.



"Seems like the girl of your dreams is really quite different from the usual girls who flirt with you. I think you'll have a hard time." Koshino told Sendoh seriously.

"Yeah. It seems she doesn't even know that the guy she talks to every night is actually Sendoh."

"Hey. What I heard from her made me like her more." Sendoh muttered.

"But she doesn't seem to like boys that much. And what's more? We've seen her interests. She's too boyish."

"Come on Koshino. Do you think I would give up now that I am more drawn to her very different personality? Besides, she told me that she likes me and she said that she wouldn't get along with me if she didn't like me."

"What about Fujima or Hanagata?" Koshino cut him off.

"Fujima is one of her friends' brother. Fujima and Hanagata are like brothers to Ru-chan."

"What about Maki, Jin, and Kiyota? I heard them say that your Ru-chan dates Jin and Kiyota."

"Fuku, I'm still not giving up on her unless of course I'm already giving her a hard time."

"You really like her."

"Yup, Kosh. I think I'm in love."

"You don't have to say that. We can see it."

"Really, Fuku?"

"Really." Fukuda and Koshino said at the same time.



The game was going to be held in Ryonan High's gym. Jin drove with the three girls to his house first to get his forgotten stuff before driving to the gym where the rest of the Kainan High Basketball Team was.

The Shoyo team and Shohoku team was there to watch. And so were Miuradai, Takezono, and Takezato.

When they arrived there, Haruka came to Maki and kissed his cheek and then to Kiyota for his kiss.

Sendoh saw this from his side of the court. He even saw Jin put an arm over Haruka's shoulder and smile at her.

Koshino and Fukuda also saw these events and looked at Sendoh.

"Don't worry. She's just close to them." Koshino racked his mind for some other explanation.

"Just don't mind." Fukuda said flatly.



Jin put an arm over Haruka's shoulder and smiled at her. "You're worried. Don't worry. With your brother, it's impossible for us to lose."

"I know Chiro-chan. Besides, Kainan is an invincible team but I just can't shrug the feeling that something might happen today."

"You worry too much, Kiddo."

"You think so?"

"I know so. Maybe I should take you out on a date after this - just the two of us?"

"Okay."

"So, later then."

Jin removed his arm from her shoulder and walked towards the rest of the team. Haruka sat with Miyuki and Umi on the far part of the Kainan bench.



"Why is he here?" Haruka muttered as she saw Kira-chan in the Ryonan bench. "Oh yeah, he's in Ryonan's basketball team."

"Who are you referring to?"

"Nobody, Miyu."

"Really?"

"Yeah. Really."



Even during the first half, the game was already heated especially between Maki and Sendoh.

Maki was currently dribbling the ball and was looking for someone to pass it to. Suddenly, Sendoh stole the ball and quickly passed it to Koshino who ran to the other side. Koshino was about to shoot but Kiyota guarded him tightly, preventing him from shooting.

Koshino passed the ball to Fukuda who scored through an ally hoop.

Maki looked at Sendoh and Sendoh knew that Maki was challenging him. Sendoh smiled and Maki knew that the game between them had just started.

Sendoh was dribbling the ball and Maki was guarding him ever so tightly. He searched for a free teammate and found that everyone was tightly guarded. He had no choice but to shoot before he is charged with a 30 second violation. He stepped back and jumped for a three point shot.

Out of nowhere, Maki's hand appeared and intercepted his shot. The ball hit the rim and the crowd cheered loudly.

Kiyota, Koshino, Fukuda, and Mutou jumped for the rebound. Mutou got the ball and ran for a fast break. But Fukuda was trailing him and was soon in front of him preventing him from shooting. Mutou side passed to Jin who directly made his famous three-pointer shot.

At first, Ryonan was leading but then, Kainan began to heat up and caught up with Ryonan and reversed the lead before the first half was over.



Jin sauntered towards Haruka and sat down beside her. Haruka handed him a Gatorade and a towel then stood up to give Maki his towel and his flavored water. Kiyota neared her and she gave him his Mango juice and his towel. She then went over to Mutou for his towel and Orange juice since Ami couldn't make it because she accompanied her mom in going to Tokyo for an important matter. Finally she went to Takasago and gave him his mineral water and his towel.

She then went back to her seat.

"You still look worried, Kiddo." Jin smiled at Haruka after he drank his Gatorade.

"Huh? Yeah I am. I don't know but-"

"Maki is going to make us win. As long as he never gives in, we will never lose our spirit."

"I know."

"Then stop worrying. By the way, what do you want to go after the game?"

"Let's just go skating. Then take me to a dinner."

"Okay. Hey, stop worrying. You're making me worried, too."

Haruka laughed. Jin only looked at her then smiled.

"Fujima and Hanagata are here. Maybe you should go and have a chat with them so that you'll forget about what's worrying you. Whatever it is." He pointed to Fujima and Hanagata who are standing near the gym's entrance.

"I suppose you're right." Haruka looked at Umi. "Want to come with me? I'll go over to where Ji-chan is."

"No thank you." Umi curtly replied.

"Very well." She looked at Jin. "Do your best. I really admire your three- pointers." She smiled before walking off towards Fujima.



"I don't want to tell you this. But I'm really getting jealous. Look at Ru- chan and Jin."

"Sendoh, this is not the time to think about your Ru-chan. We still have to worry about the game. We need to catch up with Kainan."

"Koshino is right. Worry about her and Jin later. For now, you should worry about Maki and the game." Fukuda said abruptly.



"Hey! What are you doing here? Shouldn't you be with your brother?"

"I came to talk to you, Ji-chan."

"About?"

"Nothing in particular. Chiro-chan told me that it's good for me to have a talk with you to get my mind off of the thing that's been worrying me."

"Thing that's been worrying you?"

"Well, I just had this feeling that something's going to happen."

"Rukz, you're worrying too much. Your brother has really improved. He's already one of the best before and now that he's improved more. I don't know what to say."

"Well, you can say that my brother's popularity would heighten more." She grinned.

"I think you're right."

"Ji-chan."

"Yeah?"

"Try to understand Miz. I'm sure that she'll get your reasons soon enough. Just give her time. You know how she is when the matter is about her crushes and her love life."

Fujima just smiled at Haruka and couldn't resist the urge to put his arm on her shoulder. "I wish my sister was more like you. At least you cheer for your brother and try to understand him. Not like my sister who puts me down most of the time."

"Miz loves you, Ji-chan. maybe she just feels awkward to show it to you. She is used to not being over-sentimental and mushy in front of you. She's not like me. I'm very mushy when it comes to close people."

"I know. So is she still mad at me?"

"Sort of. But I know that it will all go away in due time."



Sendoh sighed.

"What now, Sendoh?" Koshino looked at Sendoh.

"Look at Fujima. His arm is over Ru-chan's shoulder and he's smiling at her."

"He's like a brother to her. She said that remember?" Koshino said with impatience.

"Yeah. Better stop thinking about her before Taoka-sensei notices that you're not thinking about your next move for the second half." Fukuda's voice had a warning tone in it.



During the second half, Kainan had a stroke of bad luck. Maki twisted his ankle when he landed after getting the rebound. He fell to the ground. Haruka saw this and rushed to her brother's side. She helped him over to the Kainan bench.

"Maki, could you still play?" Takatoh-sensei asked.

"I think I can manage." Maki said seriously.

"No, you can't. You can hardly stand up." Haruka looked worriedly at Maki before looking at Takatoh-sensei. "He's in no condition to play. Please let him rest. I know that if my brother's not in the court. There's a possibility that Kainan would lose but this is only a practice game. If my brother plays now, I'm sure that his ankle injury will get worst. If that happens, we are staking the real game and we could lose it. Coach, you have to make a hard choice - win the practice game or the real game."

"Haruka, you shouldn't make this your business." Maki said gently at his sister.

"I have every right to make this my business. You are my brother and after all, I am also from Kainandai High."

"But this decision is not for you to impose or hint at."

"No, Maki. Your sister is right. We have no choice. We are in a situation where we can only win one game. I will not sacrifice a REAL game for a PRACTICE game. You'll be pulled out of the game." With that, Takatoh- sensei requested for the substitution.



Sendoh wasn't very pleased with the fact that Kainan was pulling out Maki. He had hoped to pull out the real ability of Kainan's captain and see if he can surpass it for the real game.

The result was 88 - 75 with Ryonan High as the winner.

After the entire team and the two coaches had shook hands, everyone started to leave. Ryonan gym had two locker rooms so Kainan was to use the other one.

Miyuki and Umi stayed on the bench while the Kainan team walked towards the locker room. Haruka went with the team to help her brother. When Maki was finally inside the locker room, Haruka turned and walked out. She was on the way to the court when she bumped into someone.

"Hey!"

Haruka looked up and saw a spiky-haired guy. "Kira-chan." Haruka smiled happily.

"Can I. I mean may I escort you to your destination?"

"Hmmm. Maybe." Haruka smiled at him and started walking.

"That's good enough for a yes in my opinion." Sendoh smiled at her charmingly.

"You have a very charming smile." She said suddenly after looking at him. "Do you have a towel?"

"Why?"

"You should cover your face. My friends might see you and you know."

"Don't worry. My heart belongs to you alone." He smiled and put an arm around her shoulder.

Haruka blushed deeply and removed his arm from her shoulder.

"Why?" He asked her with disappointment in his voice.

"Someone might see us."

"So? I saw you and Fujima."

"You know him? Oh how silly of me. He's popular. Anyway, he's like my brother."

"How about you and Jin?"

"Hey. You're being nosey." Haruka smiled at him playfully. "Are you jealous?"

"Want to know?"

"Yeah."

"Okay. I'm jealous. Really, really jealous."

"You shouldn't be."

"Why not?"

"Because, because." She blushed deeply again.

"You're really very beautiful especially when you blush but I like you not because of that." Sendoh smiled at her.



"Are you alright, Maki?" Takasago asked worriedly.

"Yeah. Maybe we should bring you to a hospital. We can't have you injured till the game." Mutou looked at him.

"It's a good thing that your sister told me something important. We could've made a very wrong decision if it hadn't been for your sister." Takatoh-sensei said.

"Yeah, good thing Rukz was here. Do you suppose she still has another Mango juice with her?"

Jin smiled at Kiyota's comment. The entire team was worried about Maki and didn't even worry much about the fact that they lost the practice game to Ryonan High's Basketball Team.

"Wait. I forgot something in the court." Maki said and walked outside before anyone could stop him.





~tbc~



Brief Author's Note: Thank you to those who kept sticking with me ^^ Thanks so much. Please R & R ^^