You're Not Him
Pairings: Shigehiro/Tamaki. One sided Aomine/Tamaki
Warnings: AU Universe. OOC. Gender swap. Nice Akashi. Some character bashing.
Disclaimer: I do not own Kuroko no Basuke and any of the characters, but the OC characters belongs to me
Chapter Seven: You're Not Him
"You're him no longer." - Kuroko Tamaki
The two semi-finals' matches of Rakuzan versus Yosen and Touou versus Tsubakikawa were both held on the same day—only in neighbouring gyms. As Murasakibara wouldn't play in the semi-finals game, both Akashi and Tamaki have chosen to opt out of the game, and surprisingly, so did Shigehiro who claimed that he need a break from the semi-finals match to be in tip-top condition for their match against Touou during the finals.
As Akashi would be on the Rakuzan bench anyway during the semi-finals game, Coach Shirogane had sent Tamaki to the neighbouring gym to study Touou's match against Tsubakikawa, as chances are that Rakuzan would wind up facing Touou Academy for the finals.
Shigehiro had tagged along with Tamaki for scouting, with both teens dressed in their street clothes as opposed to their jerseys or even their school uniforms so as to not attract attention.
"They're good." Shigehiro admitted as the fourth quarter begun, with Touou Academy being in the lead with nearly twenty points. "All of us have seen the match videos of Touou Academy last year. They're still a decent team back then, but this year…"
"They're complete monsters." Tamaki finished Shigehiro's sentence, eyes narrowing even as she studied every second of the match, eyes taking in every single detail. "Tsubakikawa is a decent school—they're one of the best teams in the Kanagawa region, but against Touou Academy this year, they stand no chance. Look at the players of both teams."
Shigehiro blinked but obliged Tamaki by switching his focus to the players itself instead of the game. Almost immediately, he saw what Tamaki had seen right from the start. The players of Tsubakikawa were all clearly exhausted and on their last legs—a sheen of sweat covering their bodies. Whereas the players of Touou Academy on the other hand didn't look as exhausted as compared to them. In fact, a certain tanned player seemed almost bored.
"Tsubakikawa are on their last legs." Shigehiro realised. "The game must be getting to them both physically and mentally."
Tamaki nodded in agreement even as she closed her notebook with a light snap. "The match is over," she stated.
A few seconds later, the buzzer went off.
"We won! Now we're on our way to the finals!" Wakamatsu stated loudly with a grin even as the entire Touou team as one made their way out of the gymnasium. There were hardly anyone around at this hour, as the semi-finals matches for the high school side were the only matches held that day.
"Yes, but that is where things will start to get tough, Wakamatsu." Susa reminded their short-tempered Small Forward. "We're up against Rakuzan in two days. They're not known as the Emperor for nothing, and they have been champions at the three major basketball tournaments for the past decade."
Aomine who is walking at the front of the group stopped in his tracks just then, causing the rest of his team to bump into each other.
"Ow!" Wakamatsu yelped, holding his nose that he had bruised by bumping into Aomine's back. "What are you doing, Aomine?"
Aomine just ignored Wakamatsu—which isn't anything new. But Momoi who is next to him who would usually reprimand her childhood friend or even stomp on his foot whenever she feels that he is doing something wrong or disrespectful—which is nearly every hour of the day, is silent as well, staring in the direction that Aomine is. Curious as to what made the two childhood friends silent, the rest of the Touou team followed the direction of their gazes only to see two certain basketball players.
"They've gone back?" The dark orange haired teen of the duo asked the shorter and smaller teal haired girl with him. They were both standing near the entrance of the Tokyo Gymnasium, and the girl is busy typing something in her phone.
The girl nodded before looking at her companion. "They want to get some extra practice done. Coach is giving you the day off from practice today, but in return, your practice will be doubled tomorrow."
The male groaned in dismay, and the girl chuckled.
"Aren't they…?" Sakurai trailed off slowly, recognising the duo immediately as they have appeared at the Touou gym once.
He still remember how pissed that Aomine had been for nearly a week after that. Momoi was pretty quiet for an entire week after that that it made the entire team uncomfortable. The regulars even talked amongst themselves when out of Aomine and Momoi's earshot—wondering just what had happened amongst the Generation of Miracles.
Nearly every single player in the basketball circuit have heard the rumours that have spread like wildfire after the championship league match between Teiko and Meiko. They have heard how pissed that the captain and vice-captain of the Teiko basketball team have been. The screams by Akashi Seijuro and Kuroko Tamaki could even be heard down the hall through the closed door of their changing room.
"Rakuzan's vice captain and former member of the Generation of Miracles, 'Mirage' Kuroko Tamaki." Imayoshi nodded, adjusting his glasses. "And 'Lionheart' Ogiwara Shigehiro, formerly of Meiko Middle."
Kuroko Tamaki and Ogiwara Shigehiro looked up at the sound of their names, and their faces darkened considerably when they caught sight of Aomine. Clearly, the two seemed about to leave the Tokyo Gymnasium, as they have their bags with them—probably going to hail a cab or even take the bus to wherever that they are staying.
"Come on, Tamaki." Shigehiro said quickly, leading her by the arm, and the teal haired girl nodded, clearly not wanting to get into a conflict right here with Aomine right in front of the gates of the Tokyo Gymnasium.
"Hold up!" Aomine took off running after the duo, catching up to them easily and grabbing Tamaki by her left wrist. He ignored the brief look of pain that flashed across her face. "You've been avoiding me and my calls." He said, ignoring the rest of his team. "Why?"
Tamaki glared at Aomine. "Hands off," she said coldly, trying to ignore the pain that shot through her left hand with the amount of pressure that Aomine is putting on her left wrist.
Obviously, Momoi had noticed, as her face went pale, especially with how tightly that Aomine is grabbing Tamaki's left wrist—probably not wanting Tamaki to get away. "Aomine-kun, let go!" Momoi squeaked. "You're hurting Tamaki-chan!"
Aomine ignored his childhood friend.
"I said, let go." Tamaki said coldly and extremely slowly—almost like she's speaking to someone mentally challenged.
"Hey, let go of her, you bastard!" Shigehiro finally stepped in, grasping Aomine by the wrist and twisting it hard enough that Aomine released his hold on Tamaki who immediately took refuge behind Shigehiro, rubbing at her left wrist, glaring angrily at Aomine. And it is only now that Aomine noticed the brace around her wrist, and he felt a light stab of guilt at that—he had almost forgotten about her injury.
"I want my answers, Tamaki." Aomine growled, ignoring Shigehiro and snatching his arm out of Shigehiro's grasp. "You've been avoiding me. You've been ignoring my calls. Why?"
"I don't owe you anything." Tamaki snapped, glaring angrily at Aomine. "I made myself quite clear at the graduation ceremony, and months ago at Touou! I never want to see you again!" Aomine stepped back like he'd just been slapped, and the rest of Touou watched on with interest. Momoi looked guilty. "I will never forgive you for what you did at the championship league!"
Imayoshi raised a brow. Even he had heard of what had happened at the championship league match. Wakamatsu had gone to watch the game with a few of his old middle school friends, and when he had come back, he wouldn't shut up about it—he was so pissed off. It is only part of the reason why he didn't like Aomine. He wasn't the only one in the team either that didn't like their ace. And Aomine's attitude definitely didn't help any matters.
"Midorima, Kise and Murasakibara are just as guilty for it!" Aomine barked.
"Well, they weren't the ones who came up with the idea to fix the score, did they?" Tamaki snapped back at him, getting truly angry for the first time in a long while. Kise had been cowed by Tamaki the day after the match when the teal haired girl had cornered him in the locker room, demanding to know every single detail about the championship match, and who had came up with the idiotic idea to fix the score. All the while, Shigehiro watched with wide eyes. He knew better than anyone how scary Tamaki could be when she is truly pissed. "Besides, do you still have to ask why I've been ignoring you?" Her eyes are almost like cold pieces of ice. "You're not the Aomine whom I knew in Teiko. You're not him. You're him no longer."
Shigehiro stepped in front of Tamaki, preventing Aomine from reaching the petite girl, ignoring the fact that Aomine is nearly an entire head taller than he is, and much more muscular. Much like Mayuzumi, Akashi, Hayama and Mibuchi, Shigehiro never seemed to put on much muscle mass despite his training.
"Stay away from her." Shigehiro scowled. "And I know for one that her cousin doesn't want you anywhere near her either."
There was a low growl just then as a black and white husky with brilliant blue eyes popped his head out from the shoulder bag that Tamaki had over her shoulder, growling at Aomine. Sakurai's eyes widened at the sight of the puppy, resisting the urge to coo over the adorable animal.
Aomine glared at Shigehiro. "This is all your fault," he accused. "Get lost!"
"Leave him alone!" Tamaki placed herself in front of Shigehiro just as Aomine reached out to give the orange haired teen a hard shove that only resulted in Tamaki getting shoved backwards to the wall, and hitting her head hard on it.
"Tamaki!" Shigehiro's eyes widened in shock. "Damn you!" He then avoided a punch from Aomine before blocking the next punch with his arms, inwardly thanking Akashi for teaching him self-defense when they were kids and then when they've reunited once more.
"Hey, are you all right?" Susa crouched by Tamaki's side with concern, supporting her weight even as she let out a low pained groan, lifting up her head.
There were low gasps at that, Sakurai paled at the sight of the crimson liquid flowing down Tamaki's head. "Blood…!"
"Oi, Sakurai! Don't faint!"
"Stop the fight!" Tamaki grabbed Susa's arm. They're right in front of the Tokyo Gymnasium for god's sake! If the authorities found them fighting, both their teams would be disqualified from the basketball tournaments for the rest of the year! "Satsuki!"
"Wakamatsu! Susa! Grab Aomine!" Imayoshi ordered, stepping in, seeing that things are getting out of hand. "Sakurai! Help me with the other guy!"
It took some struggling, but between the boys of the Touou basketball team, they managed to separate both the fighting freshmen. By then however, Aomine had a cut lip and a bruised cheek whilst Shigehiro merely had some light bruises on his arms.
"That's enough!" Satsuki hollered, her patience reaching the limits, supporting Tamaki by letting her lean against her shoulder. "Do you want both our teams to be disqualified from the basketball tournaments this year? Where do you think we are now?"
Shigehiro panted heavily before getting out of the combined holds of Imayoshi and Sakurai, rubbing at a slight bruise on his left cheek, flinching as he did so. "Tamaki, are you all right?" he asked with concern, taking the petite teal haired girl from Satsuki, allowing her to lean on his shoulder, and he supported Tamaki's weight by wrapping his arm around her waist, ignoring Aomine's angered glare.
Imayoshi sighed, rubbing at the back of his neck. "Rakuzan's Vice-Captain-san, I think it might be in both of our teams' best interests if we settle this…incident amongst ourselves instead of bringing it to our schools' authorities, don't you think so?" he suggested. "Seeing as how it had been our ace that had thrown the first punch, I'll admit that we're in the wrong this time. So would you mind dropping the matter? It wouldn't do either of us any good should this matter get blown up."
"…Fine. But you keep him away from any Rakuzan player." Tamaki warned Imayoshi, holding onto the side of her head, blood flowing through her fingers as well. Sakurai looked quite ill at the sight. Tamaki was barely able to stand on her feet at this point, but she forced herself to remain standing. "I'll have to inform the captain and coach of my team about this incident, but they'll keep it quiet. If he comes near any member of my team outside of tournament or team business, we'll bring it up to the authorities. Is that understood?"
Imayoshi nodded, knowing that Touou had already gotten off lightly for physically attacking a member of the Rakuzan team. With the amount of clout that Rakuzan and Shirogane Eiji have amongst the basketball circuit, they could very well ruin Touou and disqualify them from the finals of the Inter High. Imayoshi is never more thankful than ever that Kuroko Tamaki is the vice-captain of Rakuzan.
"We'll meet at the finals in two days. We'll settle everything then." Tamaki promised, even as Shigehiro flagged down an approaching taxi and got into it, ordering the driver to drive straight to the Midorima Municipal Hospital upon Tamaki's request.
Dr. Midorima was fortunately working his shift when Tamaki and Shigehiro have checked themselves into the hospital and had asked for him, as Tamaki had him as her attending doctor when she had injured her hand, and she knows that the doctor will keep quiet about the fight.
Dr. Midorima had seen to Tamaki's injury first of all, and he wasn't pleased to see her in his hospital injured again. Thankfully, Tamaki wasn't really injured that badly, and though Dr. Midorima wanted to keep her overnight in the hospital for observation due to a suspected concussion, he had finally relented after Tamaki had begged him. He did however tell her to check herself straight into a hospital if she experienced any dizziness or headaches.
Shigehiro wasn't really that badly injured either, with just mild bruises on his arms which Dr. Midorima was quick to treat.
"I've never seen you get into fights before." Tamaki sighed as she sat at the bus stop with Shigehiro, waiting for the bus to take them back to their hotel. "You were never this reckless when we were kids. You're lucky that you just had bruises. I've seen Aomine-kun put a guy into the hospital just because he was hitting on Satsuki back in Teiko! It actually took Sei to convince the teachers and the principal not to expel him at that time. What do you think would happen if Aomine-kun had actually hit you?"
"Well, I couldn't just sit there and let him hurt you!" Shigehiro protested, eyes landing on the thick bandage around Tamaki's head. Oh dear God… It is going to be extremely difficult to explain to Akashi later, and even more difficult to stop him from going after Aomine and killing him.
"Why are you so concerned about me anyway?" Shigehiro could barely hear Tamaki's question—she is speaking so softly.
The orange haired boy messed up his hair with both his hands with frustration, ignoring the bandages around his arms. "Urgh, damn it. I guess Seijuro is right," he muttered irritably beneath his breath, and Tamaki looked at him curiously. "Precisely because we knew each other for such a long time, I guess that I really have to make it clear." He cleared his throat, looking at Tamaki nervously. "This entire time, I've never seen you as 'just a friend', Tamaki." He said quickly. "I like you." Tamaki's eyes widened. "Even when I was little, I saw you as a girl, and not just as 'one of us'. I…" Shigehiro looked at Tamaki hopefully. "You are my first love. You've always been. Can't you be my friend and girlfriend?"
Tamaki stared at him for a long time without speaking before she smiled at him. It is that smile. The smile that she only reserved for Shigehiro and no one else. "Yes."
Shigehiro grinned at Tamaki happily—with that grin that Tamaki always liked ever since they were kids, and he then pulled her into his arms whilst mindful of her head injury. Tamaki stiffened slightly before she relaxed in his hold, taking in his smell. She felt so safe in his arms. "I…think I'm going to take Seijuro's advice too." Shigehiro murmured in Tamaki's ear, tightening his arms around her.
You've let her go once before, Shige. Don't let her go again. This time, you'd better hold onto her tight and never let go, or you'll regret it for the rest of your life.
"I'm not letting you go ever again." Shigehiro murmured into Tamaki's hair, pressing his nose into her hair and inhaling her scent. "I've let you go before because I was such an idiot. Because I thought that he is better for you. Never again. I'm not letting you go again. I don't want you to smile at anyone else. I love you, Tamaki."
Tamaki smiled, feeling tears well up around her eyes even as she tightened her hold around Shigehiro's back. "Yeah, me too," she said. "I love you."
A/N: I think I'm a little out of touch with writing romance scenes. The confession scene is so damn awkward to write! Anyway, I hope that you like this chapter, and please read and review! Reviews give me inspiration to update!
Preview of next chapter:
"We're cute little kids as compared to Sei-chan and Hiro-kun."
"I don't know about you, but I will like to have Touou experience their first loss this season."
"…Mayuzumi-sempai, you're in."