Title: Some Great Reward
Rating: PG at the moment... will become R-NC17
Genre: Drama, Angst
Summary: Fuji avenges those friends who've been wronged and or hurt, but this time...just revenge isn't enough.
Warnings: Spoilers for later in the series…Yaoi
The other chapters can be found here
So lie to me
But do it with sincerity
Make me listen
Just for a minute
Make me think
There's some truth in it
Make me think
That at the end of the day
Some great Reward
Will be coming my way.
~Depeche Mode – Lie to Me
Some Great Reward:
Intent and Purposes
Atobe stared in the mirror. He looked the same. His eyes were as gorgeous as they’d always been and his hair fell just right. He knew he was highly attractive and desirable, and that he had a hell of a lot going for him. His family was wealthy, he could charm almost anyone he wanted to, and everyone clamoured to be around him. In short, he was the centre of attention, the king of his castle: Hyotei.
So why the hell did he feel so off balance lately? A rare scowl formed on his face and stared back at him from the mirror. Fuji Syusuke. That was why.
The Hyotei captain couldn’t figure the Seigaku regular out. It wasn’t that Fuji disturbed Atobe’s outer charm, nor did he make a scene in front of other people. Rumours hadn’t started either, at least not yet, but whenever Atobe tried to ask the prodigy what the hell it was he was up to, the boy would either just smile and laugh as he left, or miraculously not be there anymore.
It’d been five days since the match… five days of the other boy appearing inexplicably in spots where Atobe would never have thought to be found or disturbed. Of course, the grey eyed boy took it all in stride, never once losing that implacable arrogance. But slowly he was beginning to wonder if there wasn’t a grain of truth to the stories surrounding the prodigy.
His eyes narrowed in contemplation. The other boy hadn’t showed the Hyotei captain even the vaguest interest before the match with Tezuka. Could that be it? Could it be that he intrigued Fuji? He had beaten Tezuka… and it was a well-known fact that no one in the Seigaku team had beaten the captain. Atobe smirked. The prodigy was trying to play games, but Atobe had already figured it out. Maybe he’d even play along for a while, but he wasn’t curious…no, not even slightly.
Well… maybe he was slightly intrigued as well.
He’d appeared every day, the unpredictability of where becoming a constant…so much that Atobe began to expect him to be in places. Only the thing was, on that day, it seemed Fuji wasn’t coming. That chafed a little. Just when Atobe thought he had the reason behind Fuji’s actions figured out…he got thrown a curve ball. It was frustrating…and it was seldom that the Hyotei captain was ever frustrated.
And he definitely wasn’t about to let anyone know that he was frustrated. During the entire day, and into the afternoon practice, Atobe’s thoughts wandered. The direction they took made Atobe want to scowl more than once, but he settled for wearing his trademarked smug-looking smirk, certain that the next day Fuji would be back and things would return to this new feeling of normalcy.
The fifth day after the match saw Fuji needing to attend an extended training session. It didn’t bother him in the slightest, his stamina and general fitness levels were almost unsurpassed, and to be honest, it fit in with his project, as he liked to call it.
That day, he didn’t make any effort to go anywhere near Hyotei, and he had no intention of going the next day either. He was undertaking a little experiment. Fuji Syusuke was the sort of person who could insert himself into another’s life without them realising it, and when he withdrew that person would feel like something was missing. The prodigy was rather curious as to whether more effort would be required than normal, although he highly doubted it.
Part of his fun, part of his manipulation… was to have his target eating out of the palm of his hand. Fuji smiled, eyes opening slightly, causing Inui to lose his grip on the ball in his hand on the other side of the court. That just made Fuji’s smile widen…maybe he could finish off the day by asking for seconds of that damn juice…
The locker room was slightly subdued after training. Tezuka still hadn’t come back, due to his injury. The atmosphere was sombre, especially amongst the regulars. It firmed Fuji’s resolve and the smile on his face took on a slightly sinister tinge.
A soft touch to his arm startled him, but he managed to restrain that surprise to a slight raising of his eyebrows. He focused on Eiji and felt some genuine affection creep into his mood. They’d been friends for so long.
“No running off today, Fuji?”
There was a merry twinkle in his friend’s eye, but at the same time Fuji could see that Eiji had been a little worried. He wondered what his friend would think of his plan, and smiled lightly…it would probably be best not to tell him… at least, not yet. It was the sort of plan the hyperactive half of the golden pair wouldn’t understand.
So Fuji continued to smile, letting amusement filter into the tone of his voice. “No…My plans have changed,” which indeed, they had, “I was just going to walk home.”
Kikumaru beamed a smile at him. “Oh, great! Well, in that case, let’s all walk together!” Grabbing both Oishi and Fuji’s hands, Eiji proceeded to pull them out of the locker room. A faint blush spread over the vice-captain’s face, and Fuji smiled to himself. So many little intricate secrets he could find if he looked… it was so easy. He wondered if they realised how well he knew everyone’s little habits, little quirks.
Fuji walked along, as silently as Oishi did, while Kikumaru almost bounced, a never-ending stream of chatter emerging from his mouth. “I couldn’t believe that surprise English test. I mean, seriously, who studies for an English test we haven’t been told we’re having? And maths…who wants to know what x equals anyway. I’m not going to see an x on the pavement and want to figure out what the hell it means five years from now, am I? Why can’t they teach us relevant things?”
The rant was one that Fuji knew all too well, and he inserted his part dutifully. “Teaching us relevant things would entail having a valid point for keeping us chained to books.” Pfft, Fuji! You’re never chained to books…Fuji counted the seconds down and he wasn’t disappointed.
Eiji looked at him incredulously, and scoffed. “Pfft, Fuji! You’re never chained to books!”
The prodigy managed not to laugh as the redhead proceeded off on another tangent. There were no more intervals that were Fuji’s responsibility, and so he let Oishi take over and simply walked in companionable silence with his teammates. Fuji’s mind was only half on the conversation anyway.
He waved goodbye to the other two where their paths diverged. When he arrived at home he simply walked through the front door, called out a greeting to his sister and made his way up to his room.
On the way, he passed Yuuta’s old room, and felt a pang of regret that his brother now lived in the dormitories at St. Rudolph. But for some strange reason, it helped him focus. He placed his bag in the corner; he was never one to fling things. Everything had its order, and everything had its reasoning. There was no need to disturb that natural fact just by being lazy.
With a sigh, he let himself fall onto his bed, thoughts of his brother flitting through his head. He’d paid Mizuki back for that underhanded trick. The irresponsibility of the black haired youth still irritated Fuji, but that was something he would finish dealing with later. For now, he’d done enough, and there were other things to think of. Jirou had been dealt with as well, and although that situation had been less dire, the lesson had been just as justified.
They were people who practically begged the prodigy to sweep the rug out from under their feet. And, as always, he was very happy to oblige them… with perfect style, grace, and that whimsical smile.
Which eventually brought Fuji’s train of thought back around to Atobe. An uncharacteristic scowl crossed his usually soft face, and his eyes opened. When he smiled, it wasn’t a smile anyone could have felt comforted by. He’d set his trap… woven the web…now he’d see if the fly flew into it.
Fuji chuckled softly before putting the situation out of his mind until the morning. It was just that easy for him.
Atobe smiled slightly, lips curving up in that way that only he could manage. The arrogant smile, tempered by ability and talent, leant him the temperance of character that could afford such obvious egotism, in everything he undertook; be it tennis or otherwise.
Sometimes he could smile thoughtfully, or frown at an unexpected outcome, but that air of superiority never left him. Even when he lost his temper it stayed. Sometimes he thought it might be a gift. He knew he was talented, he knew he was popular, he knew he was handsome, and be damned if he didn’t know that he deserved all the attention and praise he got.
Others called it arrogance, Atobe preferred to call it self-confidence. And he had it in abundance.
His eyes kept flickering to the outside of the tennis courts during practice, almost as if he was waiting for something. But he couldn’t be, could he? There was no way he was waiting to see if Fuji would show up that afternoon, especially since he hadn’t shown up that morning. No way at all.
His mind usually focused on tennis with no problem at all. Of course, he usually spared some attention for the fans that surrounded the court, but it was focused as much as it needed to be. That entire afternoon, however…it was different. He couldn’t concentrate, or to be more precise, every time he tried to concentrate, it was only a matter of minutes before his thoughts changed their direction yet again.
Blue eyed direction. Atobe scowled. Training was coming to an end and he left the courts, calling over his shoulder that the first years should gather all the balls before leaving. He made his way to the Regular locker room. Being such a large tennis club, they had separate ones.
Atobe couldn’t be bothered to change out of his tennis gear; instead he simply shoved his school uniform into his bag and slung it over his shoulder. His mood had deteriorated to such an extent that he didn’t realise someone had entered the room after him and smashed straight into Oshitari.
An apology would never cross Atobe’s lips, it just wasn’t him. Instead, he raised an eyebrow and smirked. “You finished up quickly. Don’t you two need more practice…not less?” He snickered at his own joke, feeling accomplished by the annoyed flicker that crossed the otherwise implacable youth’s face.
“Perhaps you’re right, but I needed to ask you something.” Those all too knowing eyes blinked behind their glasses and Atobe felt slightly irritated, but didn’t let it show.
“Ask me what? I don’t have much time.” He kept his tone of voice light, mocking, but his eyes were thoughtful… expectant.
Oshitari looked away for a second before meeting his captain’s eyes full on. “Fuji Syusuke’s absence today… it bothered you.”
Atobe never wore a mask, he just managed to be arrogant ninety percent of the time. So it was, that he couldn’t hide his surprise. But he barked a shot laugh anyway. “How do you figure that?”
“Learn to hide where your eyes keep darting to, and maybe other people wouldn’t notice.” Oshitari’s voice held impatience. “Why did it bother you?”
“I don’t know,” Atobe snapped. “I’m glad he didn’t come. He’s been interrupting practices enough as it is lately!”
“Mhmm,” was all Oshitari said in response. “You forgot to tell the club if we have practice again in the morning.”
Atobe looked at the other boy irritably. “No. I’ll let us sleep in for once. It’s Saturday… besides, we’re not going to weed out the failures overnight as it is anyway.” He’d aimed the barb to hurt, and was satisfied when he saw a slight flinch from Oshitari. Cocky smile back in place, he simply waved a hand behind him as he departed the building and headed home.
He stalked out to the pool when he arrived home. The house he lived in was huge, nothing short of ostentatious. Atobe loved that about his family. Everything he could ever want was handed to him, and he deserved every bit of it. The golden tennis racket had been placed in his hands and he had learned to use it through pure talent.
It was his pride and joy, and part of the reason he was so pissed off about not making it to the final four this year. He scuffed his foot on the ground in irritation, before a slow, sly smile spread over his face. The idea formed in his mind and the smile became determined.
Atobe headed inside, looking forward to the next day.
Fuji woke early, well early for a Saturday. Technically there was no actual tennis-club practice, but it was a sort of unspoken agreement that the regulars would meet and train for a while. Humming softly under his breath, he made himself breakfast, deciding to head out of the house just that little bit early.
Closing the door behind him, he stepped out, before he realised there was someone leaning against the wall at the side of his house, watching him. Fuji stopped, and smiled. Ahhh, it seemed his fly had gotten tangled nicely. He turned to face the smugly smiling Atobe, leaning against the wall. The smile on the prodigy’s face softened, a dash of malevolence seeping into it.
Now all he had to do… was drink the fly’s blood… and leave behind the empty husk.
Analogies could be so much fun.
“Good morning, Atobe.” The congenial greeting sounded sincere.
Atobe inclined his head slightly. “Fuji.”
The Seigaku regular began a slow approach, his smile still crinkling merrily. “What brings you here?”
Atobe’s grin didn’t change, but his eyes followed Fuji’s every move. “You, actually.”
“Ahhh,” Fuji cocked his head to one side, taking another slow step, and dropping his bag in the process. “Me?” He affected a laugh. “I’m flattered.” He was closer to the Hyotei captain now… close enough to touch if he wanted, but he stopped just short, one hand raised, delicate fingers curled around a lock of his own hair. “But what could you possibly want with me?” His voice held feigned innocence, and the tone of it was obviously amused.
Atobe stood a little straighter, involuntarily taking a step to the side, which flattened him against the side of the house. “Training ran smoothly again, without your visiting yesterday. Stay away from now on.”
Fuji laughed softly, taking a half step closer, so that his clothes were just brushing those of Atobe’s. The Hyotei captain glared at him. “Or else…?”
Atobe scowled slightly. “Is there a reason for you to be there? Seigaku beat us; you don’t need to gather information. You aren’t required to be there. You unsettle the younger team members.”
The prodigy laughed again. “Are you sure that’s who I unsettle?” He traced a finger down the other’s chest, eyes snapping up when Atobe reached out to hold his wrist. Fuji’s laugh then was full throated, and he leaned himself flush against the opposing Captain. “I knew you wanted to touch me.”
Atobe was surprised that the Seigaku regular had such a wiry strength. He was a lot stronger than anticipated. Warm breath brushed past his cheek, caressing his ear and making him shiver. The Hyotei captain was momentarily confused, and Fuji took full advantage.
Pressing himself against the grey-eyed boy, Fuji brought his lips to rest against the other’s. It wasn’t a gentle kiss, nor was it brutal, but simply a tease, a test… because he could. The prodigy could feel the shock running through his prey, and smiled into the kiss as Atobe responded. Whether his fly wanted to or not… he’d truly been caught in Fuji’s web.
As suddenly as he’d begun the kiss, Fuji pushed himself away again, permanent grin fixed widely. That would be the first game won. Now all he had to do was win the match. “Hmmm. With a little practice…” He laughed at Atobe’s obvious indignation.
Fury overcame the Hyotei captain. “You arrogant little…”
Fuji just laughed again. “Me… arrogant? Should I pretend you didn’t respond? Should you?” His tone sunk a level, becoming husky… “Try as you might…you won’t forget what you want… Atobe Keigo.” With a cheerful chuckle, Fuji turned around and gathered his tennis bag, only to have his wrist caught by his early morning visitor. He turned vaguely amused, open eyes on the other, and raised an eyebrow.
“What are you doing?” Atobe was nothing, if not straight to the point.
“I would have thought that was obvious. At least, to someone who is supposed to be intelligent.” Fuji leaned forward with another smile and breathed into Atobe’s ear. “But I’m sure someone as clever as you… can figure out what I’m doing… all by themselves.” His tongue flicked out to briefly catch Atobe’s earlobe, before the prodigy whirled around and departed, calling out behind him. “See you later, Atobe.”
The Hyotei captain watched Fuji leave, trying to ignore the strange feeling inside him. He was angry, yes… that had to be it.
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