Summary: Fuji delights in various methods of communication.
Disclaimer: I neither own nor profit from the Prince of Tennis.
Note: Thanks so much to Leila for giving this story sense.
Fuji was very fond of communication, and he used it to confuse others and have his fun. He told that everyone he loved wasabi. His triple counters all have eccentric names. It was his way of calling attention to himself, apart from his inherent genius. ‘People are so easy to baffle,’ Fuji mused.
Fuji was very fond of communication. Words, the various rhythms and reverberations that spring from a person’s throat, the rich sounds that vary so much with each individual’s unique voice. They were so powerful and can sway a person’s will, oh so easily.
Or so Fuji thought until he met Tezuka. Then he felt frustrated for a while. Tezuka’s will was too strong to be swayed. Fuji soon started to admire him. Because he was able to command and give support without words. Suddenly, communication was not all that important. Suddenly it was all about the glances and the secret smiles.
Tezuka had always been told since he was child that he did not act his age. Tezuka begged to differ. He simply did not feel the need to talk as much as the other kids did. That did not mean that he did not enjoy when Kamen Rider transformed just as much as the other kids.
His mother always knew he was a natural leader. The little kids at the kindergarten always followed him around. There had always been something commanding about his presence.
Tezuka never felt the need for words to express himself. People knew when he was angry, or disappointed or happy from his facial expressions. At least he thought they did. It wasn't until he met the blue, blue, eyes of Fuji Syusuke that he started questioning his ability to not only making himself understood, but to understand himself. He had noticed one thing during his first year, when Fuji had entered; Fuji smiled a lot.
Fuji smiled because he noticed that words did not interest Tezuka nor did they unsettle him. But Fuji’s smile made Tezuka curious. Fuji felt the intense glares on his back, it helped that he was very good at tennis which, at that moment, seemed to be Tezuka’s only passion. Fuji would make sure that it would not last for long. He smirked.
Tezuka was annoyed because he could not concentrate. Fuji’s smile hid something and it made him want to find out what. He found himself staring at Fuji’s back during practice, or through the fences on the courts. He was pretty sure that Fuji knew that he was staring, but he did not care. Fuji was both an enigma and a challenge. He could play tennis excellently, and hide all his secrets behind that infuriating smile. Tezuka frowned.
During their second year, they talked more. They played more. But this advance came to an abrupt stop when Fuji sustained an injury. He sprained his ankle and was forced to keep it in a cast for over a month. He retired from tennis during this time and went to Chiba. There he spent his time reading and staring at the waves. There was just something about the tide that reminded him of Tezuka, something about it that made him want to cry and laugh at the same time. He realized that there would always be something between them that would make them come and go, just like the tide.
Fuji closed his eyes and decided that he should invite Tezuka there sometime.
Tezuka missed Fuji terribly, at school, at practice, on the way home, everywhere. He discovered that he was used to a world with Fuji and he did not want to find out how it would be without him. He was scared then, because no one had ever had this much control over him. When Fuji came back they would talk, really talk, because that just couldn't go on that way.
But when Fuji came back, he no longer talked; he did not feel the love for words he once had. He distanced himself from the world. Always shining, but in the way the stars do, so far away. Fuji looked at Tezuka and thought back on the waves.
Fuji was afraid; he did not want to disappoint Tezuka. He did not want to be like the enormous wave that crashed down at the shore that just ends up being part of the rest of the foam. He had always been the prodigy, someone that was not “part of the rest”. A piece of him had always strived for this and he was scared that if he no longer has this, Tezuka would just walk away. Then Fuji thought that maybe he was being unfair, because he knew Tezuka just wasn’t that way.
Tezuka’s limits that he put there oh so carefully all shatter when he met Fuji. He was the complete rejection of routine, and the absolute denial of effort. Unless he were driven. Tezuka found that he wanted Fuji to be perpetually driven. Because when Fuji opened those blue eyes, when Fuji had a purpose, Tezuka thought, he was the brightest star.
He lay there on his bed, blank. His mind so white like the clouds that sway in the blue sky. Blue. Suddenly he was submerged in a deep, endless sea of emotions. Tezuka looked at the sky once more and thought that maybe, just maybe, there was a way he can reach the stars.
He wanted the old Fuji back.
The sand caressed the soles of his feet; the warm and rough feel of the grains relaxed him and carried his mind far away. Many years later, Fuji wondered just when their relationship became like the tide. Always ebbing. But then, it came back with a strength that surpassed all limits.
Tezuka walked toward Fuji, feeling the sand beneath his feet, staring at his back, and at his brown hair. He mused that Fuji was so bright, like the water in the sea in front of them. Not as bright as a star, because he could reach him, and hold him, and touch him. Fuji turned around and smiled because he knew that Tezuka would never get tired of riding this wave.