SCoRCHeR

Past/過去

XVI.

"Alright! Eat up!" Daichi announces. And just as hungry wolves waiting for the firing signal, the group instantly charges at anything they can see on the table after she gave them the green light.

"Thank you for the meal!" she hears them shouts, smiling as she closes the door behind her.

Nice weather, the girl sighs, little by little taking in the calmness of the night. Good thing she already ate before since she sincerely doubts that with that much menace they're emitting when they aimed for the food that she would be able to get a bite, if any at all.

"Aren't you eating?" Yuu's voice suddenly comes from behind her back. Daichi turns back, greeting him with a chuckle.

"I already ate," she answers, "What about you though?"

"I fought for my share!" the libero exclaims proudly.

"And you won?"

"Bet I did!" he ends it with a laughter.

Such excitement, she laughs. To think that just a few months ago Daichi never thought that she would be standing here, talking to him like this. Even though their class were just a mere two meters apart, the girl never really had the courage to take a step towards that door and talk to him. Always running away, always hiding from the things she wanted the most.

"Nishinoya," she calls, tugging on his shirt.

And he answers with a "Hm?"

"How does it feel to see?" Daichi asks.

The libero goes quiet for quite a while before he replies, "I don't know." Daichi bets he's shrugging right now, Ennoshita always mentions that Yuu would shrug when he say this kind of line. She didn't buy it at first, but now? She'd believe almost anything.

"I mean I've got to admit it's really cool," he continues, "since you know, I can see where the opponent's ball is gonna go. But aside from that, I don't know."

"I see." she smiles, "Did you know I used to be able to see too?"

"Seriously?!" the libero exclaims.

"Seriously," she chuckles back, "I don't really remember all of the things that I saw though. I didn't know I'd lose my sight so I never thought of remembering every little thing. I was always an ungrateful brat when I was small."

"Nonsense!" Yuu disagrees, "But I bet you'd be awesome if you have both your skills and your eyes. I mean come on, you're pretty badass right now, imagine you with sight"

Daichi hums. She never thought of it that way. Most of the skill she has right now is due to her not being able to see so if she had been able to see, she wouldn't be where she is right now... If she had had her vision, would she still have found her way to this team? To Yuu?

The thought of a different life charms Daichi's attention from the place she's standing at. That's right. If she didn't lose her eyesight, probably none of this would have happened. Her parents would not have get divorced, she would not have been introduced to the Oikawas, she wouldn't have come to Miyagi either. She wouldn't have met Keishin, wouldn't have played volleyball, would have been studying in an international high school somewhere in Napier.

"Hey Nishinoya," she calls again. And once again, the libero makes a sound to suggest that he's listening, "Do you think it's good that I can't see?"

"What kind of question is that?" the libero laughs, chomping down the food as she holds on to the Calpis cup he handed her.

"I don't know. Just asking." Daichi shrugs. Shit, now she too is getting used to the routine of shrugging.

"Never really thought about it," he says, "But I'd say that you're here because of your special gift due to your eyes right? That's good enough for me!"

That's good enough for you, the girl feels her heart warming inside. "Thanks." She grins, "You're still nice as always."

"About that too, Chicchan," the libero voices, quiet and hesitant, "What do you mean when you said that?"

"You're nice? I mean you're a good person? A good heart? Good personality?"

"No, not that!" Yuu counters with a laugh, "I mean you make it sound like you know me or something. Did we meet somewhere before?"

"You don't remember?" Daichi gasps. He doesn't remember.

The girl doesn't know what to feel. He doesn't remember. He doesn't remember jackshit! Yuu, you've got to be kidding me right?!

Well it's true that their meeting wasn't long enough for him to remember her... maybe. At least she's not stupid for assuming that he hasn't completely forgot about her right?

What has he done these years that he entirely wiped her existence out of his mind?

"I mean I think I should have remembered you, but I don't think I do... Wait, that doesn't sound right. Chicchan, did that sound right?"

"Hahaha," Daichi laughs, "You said the same thing too when you let me piggyback ride you to the infirmary."

"See! I knew it! You knew me!" Yuu shouts out, "Come on, spill it! Where did we meet? Middle school or something?"

She nods. What is he thinking right now she wonders. Knowing Yuu, he'll probably think something along the line of "I know, you're that girl in the hallway or-"

"I know! You're that girl from the class 4 right?! I didn't hang out with the people from there so you must be one of them!"

"DENIED!" she says, laughing out loud, "Come on, you can do better than that, Nishinoya. Come on."

"Give me a hint!" he asks, "Give me a hint and I'll get it right!"

"Kitagawa Daiichi," finally, Daichi gives up. If that doesn't jog up his memory. Nothing will.

"AHHHHHHHH!" a sudden sound from the boy startles her. "It's you! The crybaby!" he clamors, grabbing at her wrist. "Holy hell, it's you!"

He repeats. Yuu seems happy. But not as much as her. Daichi's heart beats fast. Finally he remembers. Finally, the whole reason why she agreed to help in the first place can now be known. The reason why she wanted to go to Karasuno so badly.

Finally you remembered, Yuu.


Nishinoya marvels at the grinning girl in front of him, her dark copper hair swaying ever so slightly from the cool night breeze.

How could I forget her?, he internally scolds. Though short-lived, she meant so much to him. If it wasn't for Chicchan he wouldn't even be playing right now. How long has it been that thanks to her he was able to keep moving on?

"Come on, stop being a crybaby!" Nishinoya scratches his head, unsure what to do with the kid in front of him.

"It hurts!" the brat wails, "My foot hurts!"

What the hell is wrong with this kid?! Stop crying already! The one who wanted to cry was him, alright?! The fuck did this kid get from wailing at him?!

"Shut it! Stop crying!" the libero growls, unsure of what to do next. The kid is causing a scene! If he doesn't do anything fast... "OKAY OKAY! If you stop crying I'll buy you ice cream!"

And the instant his words finished, no more sound was heard. It's too comical that it's almost cute how the brat was just biting its teeth down to stop the cry. He can't see through the sunglasses but at least for now, absolute quietness sings his victory.

"Alright," he let out a sigh, "Get on my back. I'll take you to the infirmary first, we'll have a look at your f-"

"NO!" the kid shouts, "I don't want to go to the hospital!"

"It's not a hospital!" Nishinoya yells back, "… I think? Am I saying this right? Argh fuck! Anyway, we have to tend to your foot. If you don't go to the infirmary, you might even have to cut it off you know!"

"Let's go!" the little one clings on his jersey, fighting to climb on his back. How he immediately changes his mind after the silly threat eludes the libero's mind as quick as the kid's decision. Well surely no one would want their feet cut off but falling down the stairs won't be the cause of foot amputation that easily! Is this kid an idiot or what?!

Nishinoya sighs, dragging both of them towards the infirmary. Lord knows that he's trying, repeat TRYING, really hard to not let the constant "Ice cream! Ice cream!" cheer from this twat to break off this patience. He had enough with today's match already. Ain't no kid is gonna make his day turn bad.


"So?" the brat speaks, swinging his left good foot up and down, up and down, eating the Garigari soda that Nishinoya likes so much, "Why did you cry before?"

The libero stop mid-way tending to his wound, looking up at the brat. "It's none of your business!" he says, "Beside it's you who was bawling your eyes out about a sprained ankle"

"It hurts, idiot!" the kid exclaims, hand holdings the ice cream flailing around, "When it hurts you just gotta cry!"

"What kind of logic is that?! A man doesn't cry! Ever." he retorts.

"What kind of shit talk is that?! That's just plain stupid. Are you an idiot or something?!" the kid counters pointing its finger at him and Nishinoya angrily stands up, grabbing the collar of his shirt.

"Who are you calling an idiot, you little shit?! I've had just enough with you brat!"

"Who are you fucking calling a brat, you idiot!" the kid wards his hand away, standing up, only to fall down right way.

Nishinoya flinches, dashing forward to catch him. For goodness sake, injured people should just sit still!

Wait- the libero realizes, This ain't a he! THIS AIN'T A HE!

"S-Sorry." Nishinoya says, "You okay?"

"My foot hurts! What do you think?!" the 'he' he mistook grunts, pouncing down on his shoulder. Okay, girl or not, this brat is rude as hell.

Letting her sit down on the chair again, Nishinoya continues with his work. The faster he's done treating her, the faster he's gonna be able to shake off this pain in the ass.

"How does it feel to stand on the court?" the girl suddenly speaks again, "Is it... nice?"

"Don't know." he shrugs, "I'm quitting anyway-"

"Eh? Why?! You were so good too!" she swings her foot at him again, and Nishinoya struggle to push the unruly one back.

"I still couldn't protect my team anyway." he answers. Why am I even telling her about this?, "What does it matter if you're good and you can't do shit?"

Abruptly the popsicle stick comes at him. Obviously, it didn't do much damage but that doesn't mean he's gonna let a complete stranger throw what's left of the ice cream that he bought with HIS money at him. Ain't in no world that is gonna happen-

"YOU MORON!" the girl yells, "DO YOU EXPECT TO EAT BBQ FROM THE PIG THAT HAS JUST BEEN BORN?! You have to nurture it! Feed it! WAIT! If you want to have good meat for barbecue you've got to give it time!"

Nishinoya goes quiet at her words. What she' saying (atrocious as it is for a girl to say) makes sense. Unexpectedly.

"Besides," she continues, "Don't just hog it to yourself! You're not the only one in the team with a responsibility! Thinking you have to shoulder it all just because you're such a good libero, how cocky!"

"Bastard!" Nishinoya stands, clutching his fists, "You've been babbling way too much since you sat down! Shut the hell up!"

"You're the one who's acting like an idiot! Cry baby! Didn't you cry because you didn't want to lose?!"

"'Course I didn't want to lose! Why else would I cry?" he roars.

"HAH! You just said you cried!" the girl cackles.

"SHADDAP! You're so annoying!" the second-year hollers, "Who the hell would compare a person to a freaking pig in the first place anyway?! Are you retarded?!"

"Just so you know I'm actually at the top of my year, dumbass!"

"At what? The kindergarten?!"

"Middle school you moron! Isn't that obvious?!"

Nishinoya huffs, staring at the girl who was doing the same thing. All was quiet until they both breaks out into rounds of laughter. Before he knows it, the libero wasn't really thinking about the game anymore. This stranger of the girl, this manner-atrocity of a girl just showed up out of nowhere and drags him into her silly talks. And though it is silly, he really appreciates how it lift his mood without him realizing it.

"Don't quit, Yuu Nishinoya", she says softly, making the libero blushed as he sits down again to continue his work.

"Don't call my full name!" he waves his hand, embarrassed.

"If you quit," the girl continues, "I think your teammates will be really sad."

"You think so?" Nishinoya asks, half meaning it, half isn't, finishing the last wrap of bandage around her wound.

She nods, extracting her good leg and hugs it. Who would think that a girl this short could be a middle schooler. Her hair isn't that long either, it's not even a mistake if anyone think she's just a 10-year-old boy. A tacky one too. What's with the damn sunglasses.

"I think you're a wonderful libero," she utters, "I'm not saying that because I want to cheer you up or anything. You're just really nice in general. You have good movement, good reflexes, and you're fixed on protecting your teammate. You have a good personality too. I mean who else would have a brat like me-"

"You're exaggerating." he waves his hand again, face red.

"-I mean it. I came here to watch the tournament, but you really took my breath away. I'm sure all of the other audiences think so too-"

"Come on! Do you want a pear flavored ice cream or something-"

"LET ME FINISH DAMN IT!" the girl shouts at him and Nishinoya shuts up, hardly able to contain his smile at this chick. She's the weirdest one he's ever met. Not that he gets to meet a lot of them though. And she's a fun one too.

The brat carries on, "Your teammates probably are looking forward to counting on you again, I think. Even after you lose, I don't think any of them blame you, if anything, they're probably blaming themselves. Quitting right now isn't a very nice thing to do to them don't you think? I might be smart, but I'm not a genius, so I don't really know if all of my assumptions are correct. That's why you'll have to find out that on your own. But I know that if you quit after this, I'll be really sad."

"You will?" the libero questions, surprised.

"'Course! You're the only one who managed to receive that much serve from him anyway. You were really good out there protecting your teammates' backs."

"T-Thanks." that was all he managed to say before a ringtone entered his ears. Such cheerful sound. 'If you give it your all even dreams will come true. But just 'giving your all' doesn't guarantee so'. Nishinoya tilts his head at the sound. He heard this somewhere already.

"Yes, Dad." the sound cuts off with a click and her voice, "Yes. I just fell down a stair, that's all."

Yeah, right, he thinks, smirking.

"No. It didn't hurt."

YEAH, RIGHT.

"No. I didn't cry! I'm not a kid!"

You big fat liar! Nishinoya laughs at the girl's answer. Who the hell just bawled out about her foot just minutes ago, huh?!

"I have to go." she says suddenly, trying to stand up.

"Can you even walk?" he stands up as well, having all the intention to prepare for any chance that she might fall down like before, "I'll help you."

"It's fine. My dad is coming anyway." the girl replies, just in time for them to hear a hurrying footstep coming closer. He must have been searching for her near here. And here he is buying her ice cream to shut her up and carrying her all the way here. Almost like he's a kidnapper or something!

Shit! What do I say to her dad?! Wait! Why am I freaking out like meeting my in-law- Wait! Why am I even thinking about in-laws and stuff?! the libero panics.

"There you are!" a low voice enters the room and he turns back to greet.

"Hey Dad!" the girl next to him casually says, rushing towards the tall man. Tall and big man. Like his stature is so big that Nishinoya actually thought that he might be swallowed. Even the aura around the brat's dad is imitating. What the hell is her old man? "Bye bye, Yuu!"

First name?!

"See you around." she waves climbing on the back of her bear-like dad. Makes him question if it's a faulty gene that led to her shortage in height.

"See you around, brat." he says

"I'm a middle schooler, damn it!"

"Oh yeah? Where?" he asks, mockingly.

"Kitagawa Daiichi." the girl answers, freezing him in act.

"I didn't know you'd be going here!" Yuu exclaims, patting on her back.

Daichi tugs a lock of hair back and shrugs, chortling at his attitude. He got noisy all of the sudden.

"Yeah." she says, "A lot happened later and I ended up here. Besides, I've always meant to thank you for that day."

"Nah!", he refuses, "I should thank you! You've helped me so much! Also, thanks for the food by the way! It was a real treat!"

"You're welcome." Daichi replies, "So did you just come out here to ask about that?"

"Not really." he says, "You were pretty shook by what happened today so I was wondering if you are okay since you went out here all by yourself."

She smiles at his words. As she thought, Yuu is still gentle as always.

"I was wondering if there are any stars today." Daichi tells him, taking in another cold breath.

"There isn't any, you know." the libero claims, "Did you really want to see them that badly."

"That's one of the things I miss from my days of being able to see." she shrugs, pulling back and forth again the balcony looking at his direction, "Though I would want to see them together with someone than alone. My mom said it looks better."

"Let's, then!" his voice surprised her, making her heart stops, "Chicchan, next time let's all go! Let's go!"




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