SUMMARY: Because boys have feelings too and a lot of things are revealed at late night sleepovers; And, well, candy is just a good metaphor to describe how you feel. Fuji x Eiji x Ryoma friendship! Angst, romance, humour, and mentions of shounen-ai. Rated k+ I guess.
Ryoma sat on the teal coloured sheets on his bed Indian style (cross-legged), his hands wrapped securely around a pint sized tub of rocky road ice cream. Beneath him, leaning against the edge of the bed, sat Fuji, his legs stretched straight out and crossed at the ankles. And across from the two of them sat Eiji on a wheelie chair. You know, the fun and comfortable ones that are always in offices where adults are supposed to be working and not spinning round and round in endless, dizzying circles?
His brows were pulled down slightly in what seemed to be hard concentration as he stuffed his face with double-stuffed Oreo™ cookies; no milk.
"You know, I think the reason why people love to eat sweets when they're upset is because of the irony," Ryoma quietly observed.
Fuji glanced up from where he sat, a sour-sweet gummy worm in his hand and on its way to doom.
"What do you mean?" he asked.
Ryoma stayed silent, wondering how he could explain it clearly.
"Well, think about it," he said at last. "We're all having some sort of trouble in our daily lives. Eiji and whatever caused him to have a fight with Oishi; You and... Whatever you're dealing with. And then there's me and my problems with Momo, my family, and the hanging issue of going back to America." He took a small bite of his ice cream.
"Yeah, but how's it ironic?" Fuji asked without looking up.
"Because. Everything we want to do, our hopes and dreams, plans for the future, ideas, love lives...all of it's being thrown about, tossed aside, disregarded, or trashed. They're all being destroyed. So the sad people who eat sweet things..." he struggled for the right words. "When everything's going to Hell around you, and all you want is for something to go right for once,..." Here, he clenched his fists in frustration. "I think it's ironic when people eat sugary foods when upset. Because it kinda makes you more sad and angry right? You become more aware of how bitter and sour your situation is...
"You become bittersweet." Ryoma finished saying.
"Ah, I understand. But wouldn't it be better to say that the issue becomes bittersweet, not the person themselves?" Fuji asked, eyes closed. He casually leaned over and stole a cookie from Eiji's platter.
"I guess. I don't quite understand how someone can be happy over something that makes them so upset." Ryoma agreed. He tried to ignore the oncoming brainfreeze that slowly inched its way closer.
"It's simple," The two friends previously talking turned their heads towards the other guest, who was nearly forgotten in his unusual silence.
Eiji swiveled around in his chair, his bottom lip caught gently between pearly white teeth. "The feeling itself isn't of course; feeling half unhappy and half content for someone is a complicated emotion,...but not impossible." He smiled gently at his best friend and his adorable underclassman.
"It happens in love all the time."
"Saa~ So Eiji knows of this feeling then?" The resident sadist of the tennis team grinned devilishly and a certain redhead chuckled nervously.
"I guess do." Ryoma prompted him with a stare. Eiji groaned and rolled his eyes to the ceiling, as if to say 'why did I open my big mouth?'
"Well, there was a time, before I started to date Oishi, where—"
"Wait! You're dating Oishi-senpai!?" Ryoma exclaimed. He glanced rapidly between Eiji and Fuji awaiting a response. Fuji chuckled.
"You didn't know?" he asked.
"But...didn't you just mention mine and Oishi's relationship?" Eiji inquired, his head tilted to the side cutely and a finger on his jawline. Brows furrowed.
"I mentioned you having some kind of fight with him; I didn't know you guys were dating! I mean there was always a strong possibility, seeing how close you two are and were in the past and how well you work together, but I never thought...that..." He trailed off.
"Are you disappointed?" Eiji asked, truly bemused by Ryoma's downcast tone of voice.
"No, no. I'm happy. Just upset that I'm the last to know." He appeared to have a sudden revelation. "Am I the last to know?"
"Ah...Yeah, kinda. I knew since long ago and Inui's kind of a stalker. He's taken to telling Kaidoh everything he finds amusing or fascinating and, well, nothing really stays a secret when Momo and Kaidoh are arguing. They tend to use anything and everything to their advantage." Fuji said.
"And no one can fool Tezuka-san~" Eiji smiled.
"Taka found out last month." Fuji pointed out.
"Oh." Ryoma pouted. "How long?"
Eiji shrugged. ''Since October?''
''Five months!?'' Ryoma didn't know why he was so surprised. Now that he looked back on it, the signs had always been there. In fact, why hadn't they hooked up sooner?
''I guess.'' He pretended to be nonchalant about it, but the other two were confident that Eiji knew just exactly how long he and Oishi had been together. He was serious when it came down to relationships after all.
''Before you dated Oishi?'' Fuji nudged the conversation back into the right direction.
''Ah, right! Um...So there was this guy I'd really liked since the beginning of middle school, five years ago. I knew it was hopeless, since he was so obviously straight. He dated every girl that asked him out, all we talked about when it came to romance was girls, and he never so much as peeked at guys in the change rooms. I'm sure of it.
''Anyway, we got along great and hung out all the time. No matter where and when or what reason, we were there for each other...'' Eiji got a far away look in his eyes, as if gazing off into another world, then grinned sheepishly; a blush stretching across his cheeks and over his nose, a hand behind his head, and shoulders hunched forward and one leg dangling from the chair.
''If I were to be completely honest, then I'd say we got along a bit better than Oishi and I do.''
''Even now that you're dating?'' Ryoma asked.
''Hmm. Dating comes with its own unspoken set of rules and complications. It's not so easy as to say 'Well we were friends before, so why won't it work?''' Fuji answered and Eiji nodded in agreement.
''Oh...'' was the downcast response. Eiji glanced at Fuji.
''Is that why you and Momo-chan are fighting?''
Ryoma nodded. ''Because I was hanging out with Monkey King.''
Fuji's ears perked at this.
''You had a brief fling, right?" Ryoma nodded and Fuji smile turned wistful. "Well, I understand why Momo-kun's upset but why are you?''
''Because he said that I was his, so I shouldn't flirt with others. But I wasn't flirting! Atobe was being an idiot, like usual, and I was making fun of him. Same as always. I don't like how Momo thinks he can own me, like some...object,'' he huffed.
Fuji chuckled. ''It's more like, you're dating now so he wants you to look at only him.''
''Oh. Then why say 'belong'?''
''Because, in a way, you are his in a completely unique way than to anyone else just as he is yours.''
''...Love is much too complex.''
''It is, but I find it worth it in the end when you find the right one; The tears, heartache, joy etc... How else are you supposed to figure out what you want in a partner?''
''Is Tezuka 'the one' do you think?'' Eiji asked.
''...I don't know. But it's okay if all I know now is that I love him.''
They lapsed into a comfortable silence. Eiji took a deep and slow, unwavering breath then released it.
''So yeah. I confessed one day, he declined as expected, and we remained friends.''
''Really?'' Fuji asked.
''Well yeah, the hurt didn't go away and there may have been a slight strain or tension that wasn't there before but...we continued to talk and hang out. We still do.''
'''You still do'... Is it someone we know?'' Ryoma inquired. Eiji's grin was sly as a fox's.
''Hmm, I wonder?''
''Oh come on, tell us!''
Eiji shook his head vehemently. ''Of course not! Every time I tell someone on the team something, it always finds it's way out into the public.''
''Isn't that usually because you yell it out loud for everyone to hear? You also spill our secrets~'' Fuji said.
''Ah!...Well...there's that.'' Eiji tapped the points of his index fingers together and refused to make eye contact. Ryoma sighed.
''You definitely won't tell us, will you?'' he asked.
Eiji shook his head and smiled apologetically.
''Saa~ It's okay Kikumaru-chan.'' Fuji's eyes were slightly open, the ice blue peeking through. ''We'll just make you repay us with something else.''
''Ochibi! Save me!'' Eiji yelled, leaping over to the bed and clinging to Ryoma who only smirked. The redhead silently wept.
''Hey, your story doesn't say how it's bittersweet.''
Eiji pulled back but didn't let go of Ryoma's shoulders, arms still tightly locked around the shorter boy's neck.
''Oh well, one month after I confessed, I got to meet his new girlfriend.'' Eiji chuckled softly and it sounded pained.
He let go of Ryoma and stretched his arms out in front of him, palms outward and fingers locked.
''I was and still am happy for him, since it seems he's found someone he really likes but, ...as expected, it still hurts.''
''You have Oishi now though,'' Ryoma said.
''Hmm...I wonder if I'm only using him? Substitutes and stand-ins are also common in young love.''
They didn't know what to say to that.
''I'm sure...'' Ryoma hesitated. ''That we'll all find our special someones... someday.''
''Ah...IT'S ALL DONE!'' Eiji exclaimed.
''There's no more candy left.''
''My ice cream melted too.''
''Saa~ Should we go out and buy more?''
They all seemed to think about it and then came to the same conclusion.
''No, I think we've had enough to last a lifetime.''
A/N: Hee~y….tell me how I did, okay? Writing at 4 o'clock in the morning is never a good thing when you've been sleep deprived for weeks and I'm afraid some things may be confusing. If there are any questions, just ask. I'll do my best to answer clearly and carefully.
Ah, I was really pissed off though. I originally wrote this on my tablet and saved it, but when I tried to upload it there was some HUGE complication where it just wouldn't upload directly. So I uploaded it onto my email and then transferred it to google drive and then it was in PDF format! So I had to fix that and then found out that 5 of the 24 small pages were missing on top of somehow receiving misspelled words that were all correct before the whole process. Example: all the O's were changed to C's and some L's were semi-colons, other letters were random characters I don't even know, etc…
So, if there are still mistakes, then tell me that too please!