A/N: This is seriously just for fun. Meant to be taken lightly - the series is just getting too heavy.
Disclaimer: It's not mine.
Their Saturday nights were always the same. He'd meet her at her place, they'd walk together to the dance club, and they wouldn't leave until the place closed.
This particular night was no different than the others - he walked up the steps to her apartment, knocked on the door, and there she was. He swore that these nights would be the death of him. She would always be dressed in something appropriate for the setting: tight, accentuating, and boldly colored. Yellow was the theme tonight, from the sunshine heels on her feet to the shimmery scarf around her neck. He knows she wishes Kurosaki could be there to see her in all her glory.
The walk to the club is easy, as always. They walk closely, but not touching, and he wonders if it will always be this way. They lightly talk about the week, but gossip is the usual fare, as the excuse for these nights is to have some time away from their relentless studies. Any talk of schoolwork is off-limits.
She heads right to the dance floor, as she always does. The beat seems to hypnotize her, and she immediately moves in to him. There was no longer any awkwardness, no matter how close they got, or how hot the dance floor became. They had an unspoken agreement not to tell anyone, after all. If it wouldn't get out, what did it matter if he knew exactly how she felt when she pressed against him?
The first time had been awkward on a level that Ishida had been unfamiliar with. He thought that perhaps she was never embarrassed about anything, and when they began to dance, she would have none of the space that Ishida so desperately wanted, and that didn't seem to go with the dances everyone else in the club was doing.
At all times, the entire purpose of the trips was release. Their last year was so hard, and they found themselves awash in a sea of assignments that never showed any signs of letting up. Inoue had expressed a desire to go dancing many times, to relieve some stress, but never had anyone genuinely offered to accompany her, aside from the usual perverts. When she broached the subject to him, she mentioned that he was the only person she could imagine going with - he was so graceful, after all. He wondered if that was quite true; though she openly admitted to him that she was trying her hardest to get over Kurosaki, he knew that the old feelings would never really die.
He suspected she knew about his feelings for her, but if she did, she never rejected him. He agreed to go along, on the pretense that he didn't want her going alone, but he could at least be honest with himself - it was worth the lost study time to be able to take her out every weekend. She loved it, mostly because it gave her one night a week to look forward to something other than the endless studying. But tonight was just different.
Kuchiki had come in on a week-long trip, and though Kurosaki had reluctantly shown up at school, everyone could tell just where he wanted to be. Ishida somehow knew that she had tried to control her jealousy at the thought, but though it wasn't a complete failure, she wasn't as good at it as she would have liked.
So tonight, she danced. She nearly outdid herself, and she seemed more intent than he had ever seen her. When she was dancing, she was someone else. She wasn't fighting back a hopeless love, she wasn't weird, she wasn't under any pressure. She was just a young woman, enjoying the feeling of moving her body to a pressing beat in a throng of people, completely and utterly absorbed.
He had grown to love the way she moved, and he found he could predict her moves with a swift certainty, allowing them to dance in impressive tandem. She found he was an excellent partner, knowing when to give and knowing when to take, moving so close to her without making her feel uncomfortable. He was dressed in all white as always, with a blue tie, and she could see other women eyeing him constantly. Not that it mattered, as he was too much of a gentleman to ever leave her side. He seemed to be completely oblivious to their attraction, and though some part of her knew exactly why and rejoiced in it, it was a part of her that she was not ready to admit to yet.
Ishida noticed the other couple's entry first. The tiny shinigami was dressed up, to be sure, but he couldn't imagine that she'd ever hold a candle to Inoue. Following was a scowling Kurosaki, so obviously out of his element. She nearly dragged him to a corner of the dance floor, and it was obvious that he was unenthusiastic. The intimacy of their touches, however, was undeniable.
Ishida bit back an annoyance that he wasn't sure he had the right to possess. He found an anger that their secret place had been intruded upon, and a fear that if they were caught, she might not want to come out with him anymore. On top of that there was the sickening suspicion that if Kurosaki got one look at Inoue the way she looked tonight, he wouldn't be able to stop looking. Ishida knew he hadn't been able to.
Perhaps his fatal mistake was trying to shift them into a position from which Inoue would not be able to see. She snapped out of her odd trance, however, and looked over her shoulder.
And looked, and looked.
Ishida felt a little out of place, standing completely still on the dance floor while she watched them. Finally, she turned back around, and fastened her eyes to his. She leaned up into his ear, and though he knew she had to be close to be heard, he had to resist the impulses that he would almost rather forget he had. She posed a question that he hadn't been expecting, and he knew that he would give in to whatever she wanted. She wanted Kurosaki to know she was having a great time without him, and not the least bit jealous of the tiny woman on his arm. She wanted him to see how great she looked, and perhaps kick himself a little bit to know that his chance was gone. She wanted a little bit of closure, but mostly, she wanted to know if Ishida was okay with it.
He knew, of course, that this would most likely blow the secret of their Saturday nights. But really, he couldn't bring himself to care. If she was okay with it, why did he care if the whole school knew he spent every single Saturday night with the class beauty? He didn't stop to consider the implications of what they were going to do - was she really over him if she was so desperate to see a flicker of jealousy in his eyes, was she using Ishida merely as a means to an end, did he even really care if he was being used? He nodded slightly, and she led him over to the middle of the floor.
The platform - it was almost always either completely deserted or populated with girls so drunk they could barely stand. It wasn't any higher up than his knees, but that extra height made all the difference. It was definitely empty at the moment, and she led him up on to it, and he pushed aside his reluctance for the spotlight. She needed this, didn't she?
If he thought she had been dancing for all she was worth before, he was sorely mistaken. He could barely keep up, and even though he was technically leading, he responded to her far more than he made the first move. He could see Rukia peering at them, as if trying to distinguish if those were her former classmates or not.
He was surprised at the reflected triumph he felt, as if her own revenge was his as well. As he looked at her and she grinned, he knew that she knew she looked stunning, and that as she danced she was the envy of every girl on the floor. Later he would remember it, and detach himself from the scene, thinking about how they must have looked. She was radiant, and he was willing to admit that he looked rather nice as well. They moved as a unit, and he was surprised at how well they pulled it off. She leaned back, wrapping a leg around him, her long hair nearly touching the floor, grinning all the while.
He basked in her glory, amazed at how right things seemed to be going. How many times had he listened as she told of her journey to forgetting Kurosaki? Well now, the idiot was skulking on the edge of the floor while Ishida was there, in the middle, pressed almost obscenely close to the girl Kurosaki considered one of his best friends, but who he never bothered to actually see. All eyes were on him and it made him feel the rush of battle, the heat of victory.
Inoue followed his gaze, and looked right at them, where Rukia was now pointing them out to Kurosaki, then brought her body back up, leaving her leg entwined with his. He looked just like she felt and she realized that he was taking just as much pleasure from this imagined victory as she was. Somehow, that made it all the better. Her guilt over the prospect of using him was dispelled - he was a willing accomplice.
She pondered the implications of this as she stood there looking at him, arms around his neck, right leg wrapped around his left, pressed as close to him as possible. She noticed that they had stopped moving for just a moment, but the weight of her thoughts were crushing in upon her. Why exactly would he care so much about her breaking free from Kurosaki? And then she knew, not in the back of her brain, like she had known her quietly developing, but never even self-acknowledged feelings for him. She knew it like she knew the sun would rise tomorrow, like she knew Ishida would graduate with honors, like she knew that he would always protect her.
He noticed the look in her eye changed. Before he could consider this, however, she leaned up to whisper "this has nothing to do with him," before kissing him squarely on the lips.
How he had gotten to his senior year without ever having kissed a girl was obvious, but how he ended up on display in the middle of a crowded club, kissing the most popular girl at his school for all he was worth with her ex-love-interest looking on was a bit more complicated. She pulled back, and he looked over and made eye contact with Kurosaki. The idiot was fuming, as if he had any right to decide what Inoue did, and somehow, that was just the icing on the cake. All he could do was smirk, and proceed to completely ignore him.
Though the secret of Saturday night had been blown, Ishida couldn't have cared any less if he tried.