It's set during the New Prince of Tennis timeline (roughly). There are a couple of small spoilers for the new series, so if you're not into those, please do not read.
Also uhm, I think this goes without saying but age and all of that jazz in the PoT universe is screwy, okay? We'll just disregard canon in that aspect. I think everybody does it ._."""
"Because there's no choice now but to try it and see." Fuji’s words sound both optimistic and hopeless at the same time. Kikumaru doesn’t quite know how to react to the other being like this. He has never seen the other cry before either. It’s a surreal situation but he knows it’s real. He knows it’s really happening right in front of him.
That had been a few days ago - or had it been weeks? The sense of time had left Kikumaru at some point during the training camp. Days seemed to blend into each other weirdly.
It doesn’t help that he feels like he has gone back in time for a moment just now when he looks at Fuji standing alone on the court, recreating that game in his mind. Kikumaru knows because he has seen the actual game. Others might not have realized the importance of what the other was doing. Emotions stirring inside of him, he debates whether or not to go and help.
Kikumaru’s foot hovers over the stairs leading down to the courts - the training day had been shorter than usual and even then, only few people were still out at this time of the night even on a normal day. The courts are still lit, albeit weaker than during night-game times.
His good vision had spotted his friend from afar - Fuji wearing his Seigaku jersey instead of the training camp one. Curiosity had made him come over.
It takes a few more moments for him to gather himself and then he’s not smiling and making jokes but facing the other seriously when he approaches Fuji. He knows the other has sensed his presence a while ago - Fuji’s body language had told him that. “You’re gearing up for a new start now, aren’t you? If you’d like a first test subject, I’m here. I already know that I won’t be chosen, so going all out against you doesn’t sound so bad.” Kikumaru steps in front of Fuji and then turns around to face the other and when he does, he does give the other a small smile at the end. He wouldn’t be himself if he didn’t do it. It has the desired effect on his friend.
Then Fuji tilts his head. “What do you mean you know you won’t be chosen?” There’s a flash of blue - Fuji is not taking this lightly, he is reciprocating Kikumaru’s seriousness.
“Call it instinct.” Kikumaru turns around and looks at the sky. “Just like you knew Tezuka was going to win, I know I am not going to be chosen. You’ll be going and I’m sure Ochibi will be as well. And Oishi.” His doubles partner had changed during the time they had spent apart at the separate training camps. Not enough to become a stranger, not enough to break their synchro but enough for Kikumaru to tell that the other had moved to a higher level.
Fuji looks at him for a long moment - Kikumaru can feel those blue eyes boring themselves into his back - and then steps up to stand next to him. “Well, then I won’t hold back when we play.”
“By all means.” Kikumaru smiles. He knows Fuji got the hint. Playing against Fuji at full power - with both of them at full power - might help him as well, to reach a place that had so far been beyond his reach. A new Fuji might give rise to a new Kikumaru.
They bump fists. “I’ll be counting on you.”
Kikumaru doesn’t take long to warm up and he’d brought his racket - everyone always had their rackets ready at all times during the camp - and then they’re facing each other over the net.
“It feels like it has been a long time since we looked at each other like this.” Fuji observes.
“I guess. We’re usually next to each other and not opposite of each other these days and we haven’t been in the same block for rankings in a while either,” Kikumaru laughs as he twirls his racket around his wrist but then he catches it and stops the motion. “Let’s go.”
He wins the rock-paper-scissors and takes the first service game, while Fuji choses sides and then goes to take his position at the base line. Fuji took the darker side of the court, Kikumaru notes but that wouldn’t be a problem. His vision was good, no matter if the light conditions were good or bad. And for everything else, there was instinct.
Fuji’s new aggressive attack tennis threatens to steamroller Kikumaru at first but then he starts figuring some things out. He has the advantage of not getting caught completely off guard and by surprise because he’s seen some of the techniques before but seeing them once was not enough to analyze them - especially since he doesn’t have Inui’s analytic prowess or Fuji’s own or Echizen’s deep understanding of tennis.
Since he is facing Fuji, he didn’t go into the match with high hopes - he was a realist at heart really - but that does not mean Kikumaru gave up before they started.
Before he knows it, Kikumaru finds himself smiling. He is excited. He is having fun.
This is why he plays tennis. It’s not thinking about winning or losing but just thinking about playing about enjoying things with his friends. It’s fun to try and figure out how to counter something Fuji throws at him. It’s fun to try and challenge Fuji with something he has up his own sleeve and see how the other reacts to it. Kikumaru knows Fuji is brutal when it comes to exploiting weaknesses and pointing out flaws. And thus it makes him think about how to overcome those things. Kikumaru isn’t always smart enough to figure everything out by himself so he needs and wants the input.
The final scores tell him that he has - as their youngest would say - still lots more to work on but he feels good about it. There are no hard feelings. It was a great match.
6 - 1
6 - 3
6 - 4
“Thank you, Fuji!” He beams and offers Fuji his outstretched hand. Kikumaru feels proud of himself, feels proud of being almost able to get Fuji into a tie-break but the other had overwhelmed him with another new move that until the very end, Kikumaru had been unable to figure out and counter. “You really are a genius. There’s nothing off about your new tennis. I think it suits you very well. I’ll cheer you on!”
“Eiji,” Fuji looks at him, looks at him with those striking blue eyes and takes his hand. And before Kikumaru knows it, the other has pulled him over, pulled him closer to the net, pulled him into a kiss. A kiss that leaves him weak in the knees.
It’s as if there’s still pent up energy, pent up emotion even after they both gave their all in the match. A different kind of energy. Kikumaru understands that much.
While it’s probably the only place without cameras, it is a very public place. Everyone could walk in at any time. Kikumaru bites down onto the towel that he took in for himself. Contrary to popular belief he knows that he can be rather loud and vocal. Despite the towel muffling his noises, they still seem too loud and too obvious to him and he feels his cheeks burning.
It draws a soft chuckle from Fuji. “I guess that hasn’t changed about you, Eiji. I’m glad to see that we all changed and yet also stayed the same in some way.”
He wants to throw those words right back at Fuji. The other teases him mercilessly, purposely tries to make Kikumaru make even more sounds. Kikumaru knows the other wants to push him towards his limit. In a different way than they had pushed each other mere moments ago on the court. There is a gentleness in Fuji’s actions today though that tells Kikumaru that the other won’t push him too far tonight, though. It’s Fuji’s way of saying thanks.
This mix of gentleness and teasing, the mutual giving and receiving and deeper understanding of each other on a level that was different from what they shared with Tezuka and Oishi respectively, was what brings Kikumaru back here, back to Fuji again and again. Sometimes he wonders about the other’s reasons but those moments are brief.
They both had their reasons, he isn’t going to pry. If Fuji wants to talk about it, he will.
Fuji snatches the towel away when Kikumaru gasps and then muffles any other sounds with his lips instead. Kikumaru mewls softly. There is so much kissing involved this time. That is new. He can’t say he hates it. Kikumaru brings his arms around Fuji’s shoulders and holds onto the other, presses them close. Fuji follows - Kikumaru knew he would. Just like when they play doubles on the court - they instinctively know what the other will do, even if they’re not in synch like a ‘good’ doubles combination, they still have their own kind of team work.
He wants to laugh into the kiss when their fingers brush against each other as they reach down at the same time. Great minds think alike?
“Touch me, Fuji,” Kikumaru smiles and wraps his own long fingers around the other’s already straining erection. “I’ll take care of you.”
Chuckling softly, Fuji complies. “I’ll be counting on you, Eiji.”
Kikumaru is proud that he manages to bite back or swallow any sounds that would have been too loud. He wonders idly how Fuji does it. Maybe he should ask for pointers later - although that might potentially be dangerous. Maybe he should ask someone else.
“I see you’ve not only worked on your stamina when it comes to tennis,” Fuji suddenly murmurs into his ear and Kikumaru splutters and almost flails.
He flails with one arm and hand - keeping his other hand dutifully wrapped around Fuji’s cock without breaking the rhythm they had set for each other. “Fuji!” His face probably matched his hair right now, Kikumaru thinks. At least if it was as red as it felt hot. “That’s not it. I-” what could he even say? There was no good comeback for this. None that wouldn’t feed into Fuji’s already existing amusement that is.
“You’ll have to tell me all about that later,” Fuji smirks and then brushes his thumb across Kikumaru’s tip. “It’s a promise.”
The blue eyes are looking into his again and Kikumaru cannot help but nod his head, sealing his fate. It’s the last semi-coherent thing he does because a few moments later, he is reduced to what Fuji sometimes referred to as ‘strangled cat noises’, as the climax shakes his body. His hand continues to stroke Fuji until he feels the other shudder as well and collapse against him, pressing him against the wall of the shower stall.
Kikumaru is toweling his hair dry when he spots Fuji behind him in the mirror. He smiles and asks, “Feeling better now? No more need to brood on the court?”
“I guess,” Fuji laughs and joins Kikumaru. “Thanks, Eiji.”
“No big deal. That’s only natural, no? This is our kind of combination after all, right?” Kikumaru shakes his head and the two bump fists.
“Indeed it is.” Then Fuji smirks and there are flashes of blue from behind the light brown bangs again. Kikumaru swallows nervously. He has a feeling that he knows where this is going. It had probably been too much to hope for Fuji to forget about things after his own orgasm. “So, Eiji, you still owe me an explanation. What have you been up to aside from low-oxygen condition training. You know, regarding your other stamina?”
“Ah, I think I should go back to my room. Or everyone else will be asleep and I might wake them up and I don’t want to do that now, do I,” he tries to escape but Fuji grabs his collar before he can do so and he yelps loudly.
Fuji chuckles darkly and drags him back. “I am not buying that excuse, Eiji. I know you better than that. You’re quiet as a cat when you sneak around. So your argument is invalid.”
You're up prillalar