I've been obsessed with this little plot bunny all weekend. I blame the French Open completely, and the irresistible idea of Seigaku sitting around watching tennis together. There was way more to be done with this idea, but I'm so in love with Tezuka and Ryoma that the priority became THEY MUST CUDDLE. And so we have it.

Title: Game-Set.
By: Aja ([info]bookshop)
Length: 830 words.
Pairings: Tezuka/Ryoma + the usual Seigaku pairings (implied).


They're all gathered around the huge flatscreen television Echizen Nanjiroh has just installed, complete with surround sound. Federer is down by a set, and half the Regulars are screaming at him to make a comeback. The other half, namely Tezuka, Fuji, Inui, and Ryoma, are thoughtful, and except for Inui's occasional comments about the angles of shots and velocity of power serves on clay, none of them have broken the rhythmical arguing of the others by so much as a murmur.

Tezuka can determine the exact moment when Ryoma gives the game up for lost; Federer has just lost his second service point of the third set, and Ryoma's attention suddenly shifts: he yawns abruptly, uncurls his arms in a lazy stretch, and just as neatly folds himself up again, curling into Tezuka's side on the couch.

Several things immediately occur to Tezuka. The first is how very warm Ryoma is, and how he manages to make a very small amount of actual contact--his shoulder and chin against Tezuka's ribcage--feel like miles and miles of skin against skin, flush and and comfortable. The second is that no one has noticed yet, and so he has an opportunity to pull away; that he should pull away. He should bring this to a halt immediately, before it has a chance to begin. He is Ryoma's captain, only his captain; and furthermore, Ryoma ought to be paying attention to this game, because who knows how soon it will be him playing this sort of match against Federer, grinding out impossible shots and stunning the world.

All of these very rational thoughts are followed by the further reflection that if he moves away, Ryoma will surely get cold. Tezuka hesitates, torn with indecision.

At that precise moment, two things happen:
1) Ryoma sighs a contented little sigh, scoots closer to Tezuka, and closes his eyes.
2) Fuji glances over his shoulder where he has been glued to the screen, sees them, and freezes for a long moment before sending Tezuka a smile and resuming his silent observation of the match.

It takes another moment for the others to begin catching on. The first is Taka, who glances over, sees them, and blushes before smiling at Tezuka and moving a bit closer to Fuji on the divan they are sharing. At commercial break, Kikumaru turns around and does a doubletake, his mouth dropping in a quick 'O' of surprise. Then he nudges Oishi with his elbow. Oishi turns around and slowly reacts with surprise, then worry, before Kikumaru's giggle beside him causes him to visibly relax. Tezuka thinks he should feel more uncomfortable than he does under the circumstances. Beside him, however, Ryoma is completely at ease, and as Tezuka looks down at him, it occurs to him to wonder why he should not be so too.

Oishi and Kikumaru beam at him, together, and then Kikumaru dips his head and tucks it against Oishi's shoulder. Beside him, Ryoma shifts and nudges Tezuka gently, then drops his head and rests it against Tezuka's thigh. Tezuka supposes his leg must make a better pillow, after all, and having Ryoma stretched out beside him is far more comfortable than having Ryoma's forehead pressed against his shoulder. He lifts his arm and lets it drop tentatively across Ryoma's back.

Inui's eyebrows shoot up from behind his glasses when he notices, but he only beams knowingly, and doesn't so much as reach for his notebook. Tezuka suspects this is because Fuji is watching, but he appreciates the gesture anyway.

Nadal has captured his third straight tiebreak point when Momoshiro finally looks back over his shoulder. "Hey, Echizen!" he barks. "Wake up, you're missing the game."

Kaidoh turns and follows Momoshiro's gaze. His eyes widen, and he growls, "He's fine, moron," to Momoshiro. The tone of his voice has an immediate effect on Momoshiro, whose own gaze finally lands on Tezuka. His expression goes blank for a moment, clearly registering the fact that Ryoma's head is in Tezuka's lap, before his face suddenly clears.

"Oh," he says. Another moment, then he grins broadly at Tezuka and turns and looks at Kaidoh. "Hey, Viper," he says, still smiling. "Today's a good match, isn't it."

Kaidoh only responds, "Idiot," and punches him lightly on the shoulder.

By the fourth set, the arguing has subsided, and no one is questioning who ought to win or who will win. Karupin the Cat has climbed onto the couch and claimed Tezuka's other leg for himself. Tezuka has tucked the nearest afghan around Ryoma's thin frame, and Ryoma has curled into him even more, black hair spilling like ink over Tezuka's fingers where they curve gently around Ryoma's shoulder.

Federer has lost the French Open to Nadal, and Tezuka can't even bother himself to reprimand Ryoma for missing the match when at last he opens his eyes and smiles sleepily up at him.

It is, Tezuka thinks fondly, a day for upsets.

~ main ~ about ~ rants ~ nqr ~ livejournal ~ the armchair ~
Fiction: harry potter ~ hikaru no go ~ prince of tennis ~ other fandoms ~ originals ~