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Breathing

By starian_nightzz

Other

Realisation

Summary:

"I won't let him die." When Kuroko collapses after the Touou versus Seirin match, the team panicked. It was then that Seirin discovers the secret that their team's shadow had been hiding, and it then changes the team as a whole. Protective!GoM

Warnings: AU Universe. OOC. Nice Akashi. Overprotective Generation of Miracles.

Disclaimer: I do not own Kuroko no Basuke and any of the characters, but the OC characters belongs to me

Chapter One: Realisation

Kagami Taiga couldn't help but take another closer look at his teal haired teammate.

It is currently the middle of team training, and their coach had been placing all their noses to the grindstone in order to get them ready for their next match against Touou, especially after Seirin's recent meeting with Teiko's old team manager, and Kagami's meeting with the ace of the Generation of Miracles.

It had only been a little over four months ever since Kagami had joined the Seirin basketball team and had been hanging out with Kuroko for that period of time, but he seems to be the only one that can find Kuroko whenever he did one of his disappearing acts. And then again, he seems to be the only one in the team that can tell his moods apart. Though to be fair, it seems that the captain is getting really good in that area too.

Even now, as Kagami took one last sprint around the court as part of their cooling down exercise, he spied Hyuuga taking a concerned look at Kuroko, who as usual, was the last at the end of their line. His stamina is as horrible as always, and if Kagami hadn't seen him in action on the court, he would never have believed that he's a basketball player, let alone a regular on the legendary basketball team.

Kuroko was huffing and puffing, with sweat pouring down his face, and is it Kagami's imagination, or is his friend looking a little paler than normal?

The whistle echoed around the court just then.

"Okay, this is it for today!" Aida Riko told her players, with all of them giving a sigh of relief. "Hit the showers! The match against Touou is in two days, so make sure that all of you are in tip top condition!"

Kagami watched Kuroko slumping his shoulders, trying to catch back his breath, one hand on his chest as he tried to breath normally and to bring his heart rate back to normal.

The redhead frowned as he saw a slight pained expression across Kuroko's face. It was gone so quickly that one would never have noticed it if they hadn't been watching Kuroko, and if they couldn't tell his moods and emotions apart like how Kagami could. The redhead is sure that the teal haired boy's old middle school teammates could probably tell his moods apart as well. After all, they have been in the same team for three years in middle school.

Kagami watched as Kuroko stumbled on his feet as he attempted to follow their teammates out of the court towards the showers, and he was quick to steady Kuroko on his feet. "Are you okay?" he asked gruffly, even as Kuroko nodded, taking in quick breaths. "The match with Touou is coming up soon. Be careful not to get yourself ill."

"Thinking doesn't seem to be Kagami-kun's forte," was Kuroko's blunt answer, and Kagami twitched, releasing his hold on his partner's arm. Okay, he seems to be okay after all, if he can talk like that. "Such advice should be better applied to yourself."

"I'm fine." Kagami grumbled as the two made their way towards the shower rooms. "My legs are healed by now. I'll be ready for that Aomine once we meet him on the court." He grinned. "Just watch. I'll beat him and bring him back." He grinned at Kuroko who smiled back. "That's why, let's show him then. Our basketball."

Kuroko smiled. "Yeah." He had one hand on his chest as he did so.

XXXXXX

It was nightfall by the time that Kuroko had arrived home, announcing his arrival home with a quiet "I'm home," whilst removing his shoes, whilst Tetsuya No. 2 bounced happily into the house, giving out light happy barks.

"Oh. Tetsu, you're home?" His father poked his head out of the small kitchen in their small three room apartment, a dark red apron worn over his clothes, a platter in one hand. "Just hang on a moment, and we can then eat."

"Okay." Kuroko nodded his head, closing the door behind him quietly as he filled his dog's bowl with food and water which No. 2 dove in with much enthusiasm. Clearly, the dog is as hungry as his owner. "Do you need some help?"

Kuroko Takaya smiled at his son. "No. Just sit still for a moment. I'll be done soon."

The teal haired boy then sat at the kitchen table quietly, where there is a photo frame of him, his father and his mother when she was still alive, sitting on the table. Kuroko takes after his father a lot in looks, as both have the same teal coloured hair, with the sky blue eyes.

The small family of two lives a modest and simple life ever since Kuroko's mother had passed away from some unknown illness when he was two, and his father had then retired from his career as a professional basketball coach to take care of his son, thus working as a novel translator from home instead. It wasn't until Kuroko had entered middle school when Kuroko Takaya had then taken on a part-time job as a basketball coach for an elementary school to bring more money in.

Even though he was very young at that time, Kuroko was more mature than most kids his age, and knew how to appreciate his father's sacrifices for him, and felt guilty that his father had to give up his career for him. But Kuroko Takaya had insisted that he never sees it as a sacrifice at all. If he had to choose again, he would still choose his son over his career anytime. To Kuroko Takaya, his son is more important to him than anything else. Though there is another reason why Kuroko Takaya had chosen to give up his career at the time of his wife's passing…

"Done." Takaya announced, placing a plate of kimchi, with a bowl of miso soup and another plate of steamed fish on the kitchen table, with Kuroko getting two bowls of rice for himself and his father. "I'm digging in."

"I'm digging in." Kuroko echoed as he dug into his own smaller portion of rice as compared to his father.

Takaya had always been concerned that his own son is much smaller and weaker than most boys his age, and had wondered if it's due to some childhood trauma or something that had caused his son to be weaker than most boys his age. And it doesn't help matters that he doesn't eat much too.

"You're having a match soon, don't you?"

Kuroko nodded. "It's against Aomine-kun's school," he replied after swallowing his food. "It's in two days."

Takaya sighed. "I still object against you playing basketball again, especially after what had happened in middle school, but I won't stop you if you want to play so badly. Just be careful, Tetsu. I don't want anything to happen to you." He added worriedly.

"I'll be careful." Kuroko nodded.

"Have you taken your medicine yet?" Takaya asked, and Kuroko shook his head. Takaya sighed. "I'll leave it on the table. So remember to take it before you go to bed. I still have some work to do tonight. If everything goes well, I might be able to make it to your match this time."

"It's fine. It doesn't matter if you don't turn up." Kuroko tried to reassure his father.

"I insist." Kuroko Takaya told his son. "I'll wash up the dishes, so finish your dinner and take a shower, and then go to bed. You look exhausted." He frowned upon seeing his son's paler than normal complexion. "You're not getting sick or something, are you?" He frowned, placing the back of his hand against his son's forehead. "No fever. Maybe you're just tired."

"Thanks for the food." Kuroko mumbled, placing his chopsticks across his bowl. "I'm going to take a shower."

"Okay." Takaya nodded his head as he watched the small form of his son heading towards the bathroom, and he then sighed, glancing at the photograph of his wife on the kitchen table. "He's still hanging in there, dear." He whispered. "Please watch over him."

The photo of Kuroko Mayumi seemed to be almost smiling at him in reassurance.

XXXXXX

Thud!

"Kuroko!"

"Kuroko-kun!"

"Tetsu-kun!"

Aomine Daiki turned around sharply as the whistle of the referee blew out, and the cries of the Seirin team rang out as it did so. Satsuki was screaming from the Touou bench as well, and the players of both teams on the court were looking at something in horror.

The tanned player's eyes widened in horror as he saw a figure face down on the ground, unmoving, the shock of teal hair on his head identifying just who he is. Both teams of Touou and Seirin were crowding around that figure by then, and Aomine dashed over towards the group in record time, a sense of dread building up in him.

Within the audience, Midorima Shintaro and Kise Ryota were both watching this scene in both concern and worry, trading looks. If this is what they think that it might be…

Kagami was kneeling down on the court next to his unmoving partner, shaking him by the shoulders. "Oi! Kuroko! What's wrong?" he demanded.

"OI! GET OUT OF MY WAY, YOU DAMN IDIOTS!" A loud and angry roar could be heard from a certain short-tempered ace.

Aomine Daiki pushed his way roughly towards the front, not caring whom he knocked over. Wakamatsu Kousuke has to reach out to grab hold of Sakurai Ryou's arm to prevent the timid teen from getting knocked over. The Touou Center growled low in his throat, adding another thing to his list of why Aomine Daiki is top on his list of Least Favourite People in the World.

"Give him some air!" The Seirin coach, Aida Riko ordered, pushing her way through the crowd of boys.

By this time, Aomine had turned Kuroko over gently so that he is lying flat on his back. The teal haired boy was pale—even paler than normal, and Aomine hitched his breath. He knew what is this. The entire Generation of Miracles had dealt with this often enough in the past.

The tanned player reached out a hand and felt for a pulse at the teal haired boy's wrist.

Nothing.

Aomine breathed in sharply, a look of panic visible in his eyes, though it isn't really visible to anyone at present. He pressed two fingers against the pale boy's neck. Quickly, he then placed two fingers just before Tetsu's nose.

Nothing. Not even a draft of air.

Aomine looked up at Seirin, a look of panic on his normally arrogant face.

"…He's not breathing."

The faces of the Seirin team were almost pale, and from the Touou bench, Satsuki looked close to fainting. Kagami's eyes were almost bulging out from its sockets, and he looked petrified.

"What did you say?" he almost shouted at Aomine.

"I said that he's not breathing, you idiots!" Aomine shouted back at the tiger, ignoring the babble and mutterings that had broken out like hissing fires all around them from the audience. "Call an ambulance!" He shouted, barely noticing the fact that his coach had pulled out his cellphone and had started calling for one. "Satsuki! His medicine!" Aomine shouted at the pink haired girl who had started rummaging through her bag for the small piece of plastic that their teal haired friend had been so dependent on throughout their Teiko days.

When they have moved onto high school, Satsuki had still carried that small piece of plastic around with her because of habit. And right now, Aomine was never so thankful for that, even as he started performing CPR on his unconscious friend, trying to pump some oxygen into his lungs.

"Here." Satsuki, with tears brimming around her eyes, pressed the light blue inhaler into Aomine's hands.

The whispers and mutterings from the crowd were getting louder by the minute, and Seirin is vaguely aware of the horrified looks on the faces of the Shutoku team who were present at the match.

The tanned teen immediately placed the inhaler into the teal haired teen's mouth, trying to make the smaller teen inhale the medicine, but to no avail.

"It's not working!" Aomine almost threw the plastic away in frustration. "When is the ambulance coming?"

"Tetsu-kun!" Satsuki was on the verge of hysterics.

"Aomine, move aside!" A familiar voice commanded just then, and Aomine turned only to see Midorima standing behind him, with Kise just beside the green haired teen, a look of panic on his face.

"Midorima!"

"Move aside." Midorima literally moved Aomine by himself as he took over the job of trying to resuscitate Kuroko. The green haired shooter was never as thankful to his father's doctor training like now, as he tried to pump oxygen back into his old teammate's lungs. 'Come on, Kuroko! You're not as weak as that!' He thought furiously. 'You have to work with me here! Come on, Kuroko! Breathe!'

With the Seirin team, Aida Riko was nearly crying, both hands covering her mouth as she saw her smallest and youngest player lying motionless on the ground, looking almost as if he's dead, his face as pale as Death. Hyuuga had one arm around Riko's shoulders, trying to comfort her. Momoi Satsuki was not that much different, with Kise having to hold the pink haired girl up, or she would probably be on the floor by now.

The teams of Touou, Shutoku and even Seirin were watching with bated breaths and horrified expressions as Midorima Shintaro worked on giving his friend CPR for at least two minutes, a determined look on his face, not willing to give up. The sounds of the ambulance sirens cut through the air just then.

"The ambulance!" Furihata Kouki could have cried with relief. "It's here!"

"I'll go and guide them!" Koganei Shinji literally sprinted towards the entrance of the gymnasium to guide the paramedics.

It seemed like hours to the Seirin team after the paramedics have fixed an oxygen mask onto Kuroko's face, and had placed him on a stretcher, preparing to load him into the ambulance to take him to the hospital. As only two people are allowed to accompany the teal haired boy on the ambulance, Midorima and Kise have offered to go with him, with the green haired shooter shooting down Aomine and Kagami's angry protests, arguing that in case they have forgotten, they still have a match going on.

"Finish up your match as soon as you can, then come to the hospital." Midorima told the panicked Aomine and Momoi. "You both know which one and which part of the hospital that he will be in. I'll go with him and Kise, and keep you updated on his status. Kuroko will be fine." He reassured Aomine. "He's not the type to go down like this. Come once your match is over."

Midorima then took off after the paramedics towards the entrance of the gymnasium, with a teary Kise following him. Kagami was still in a state of shock, as is the rest of the Seirin team.

What had just happened? Why did Kuroko suddenly collapse like that?

And judging by the reactions of the Generation of Miracles, this shouldn't be the first time that this had happened. After all, Midorima, Aomine and even Momoi seemed to know just what to do.

But more importantly, is Kuroko going to be fine? He was so pale and still when the paramedics have taken him away.

"Don't worry, Midorima is with Tetsu, so he's going to be all right." Aomine's gruff voice broke through Kagami's panicked thoughts, and he turned to face the tanned player. Aomine looked concerned and worried as well. "The hospital that they're taking Tetsu to belongs to Midorima's father, so he'll be in the best hands possible. We can visit him after this match is over." He glared at Kagami. "I still have a match to win after all." He growled.

A/N: This had to be the first story of mine when I didn't gender bend the main character. Feels a little weird to not be writing from a girl's point of view, and hence, parts of the story might be a little stiff and awkward. Anyway, this story won't be very long, maybe spanning about ten chapters or so before it ends. This story will focus more on friendships and family relationships than actual romance, if there is any. If there is any, it will only be Momoi and Kuroko. While I do read and watch yaoi from time to time, I do not write yaoi!

Anyway, I hope that you like this chapter, and please read and review! Reviews give me inspiration to update!

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