“Kichirō-san, I can’t go with you later in the library since I’ll be joining the tryouts for the basketball team,” Naoki said.
“Oh, okay. That’s fine. I can go by myself anyway. Do your best!” Kichirō responded cheerfully.
“Yes, I’ll do my best!” Naoki responded with a gentle smile on his face.
After class, Naoki went to the gym for the tryouts. He went to the locker room to change his clothes. He took off his shirt and opened his bag and while he was doing this, he suddenly felt as if someone was staring at him. He vigilantly looked around and held his shirt in his embrace, covering his bare chest. Finally, he saw Ken on the other side, glancing at him.
“Is there anything wrong, Hirano-senpai?” Naoki asked with a puzzled look on his face.
Ken only stared blankly at him and then awkwardly said, “Uh…no. I’m just surprised to see you here.” After saying that, Ken smiled brightly at Naoki.
“I see. I used to be a member of our basketball team back in senior high. I only wanted to try my luck here.” Having heard what Ken said, Naoki responded casually and smiled back at him.
“Oh man, I’d do anything to get a hottie like you play with me, hehe,” Ken said as if he was flirting with Naoki. Naoki noticed that his smile became more radiant and Ken winked at him as well.
It felt like Ken’s stares were stabbing him. He was definitely measuring Naoki with his eyes from head to toe, as if a pervert, who was preparing to molest a helpless little girl. Ken only needed to drool to complete his classic pervert look.
“I’m sorry, but you’re not my type, Senpai,” Naoki felt awkward. He knew that Ken was hitting on him, so he immediately turned him down.
Ken did not speak for a moment. He walked toward Naoki, wrapped his arm around Naoki’s shoulders, and laughingly said, “Haha! Don’t take it seriously, man. I was only teasing you. Hey, good luck. I’ll be the one conducting the interview and I’ll be observing you guys in the tryout. The captain’s not around, ahem…so as the assistant team captain, I’m filling in his work. You have to make sure you’ll stand out, okay? I’m pickier and stricter than he is.”
Naoki could feel the weight of Ken’s arm over his shoulders getting heavier and heavier. He noticed Ken’s serpentine hand slithering all the way down to the exposed part of his chest. The friction between their skin seemed to have given Naoki a tingling sensation, similar to that of being slightly electrocuted. In an instant, Naoki grabbed Ken’s hand and flung it away, then he subconsciously moved away from him.
There was an awkward silence.
To lighten the mood, Naoki spoke first, “Hirano-senpai, thank you for wishing me luck. I practiced very well for this, so I know I can make it.” As he said this, he also distanced himself a bit farther from Ken.
Noticing this, Ken laughed awkwardly and cleared his throat, then he said, “If you said say so. Oh, by the way, how’s your friend? That Ishikawa kid.”
“Uhm, he’s fine. He’s in the library at the moment, studying and working on his homework. I know I’m not in the position to ask, but…do you happen to know what happened between him and Ueno-senpai? I didn’t dare to ask Kichirō-san about this. Every time I tried to start opening it up, he seems to catch on what I’m intending to ask and avoids the topic. Then, he shifts to a new one.”
“Man, I’m not sure, too. Only the two of them know what’s going on. Ryū…that guy’s kinda the type who’s really difficult to read. He won’t even talk about it with me. I find their interactions interesting, though.” Ken beamed after saying this.
Naoki laughed dryly and asked one question after another, “Hmm, don’t you find it strange? So, what’s Ueno-senpai up to? Why’s he not around?”
“Uhm, would you look at the time. Hey, let’s continue this talk later, maybe while having some coffee? I gotta go. I need to prepare for the interview. Give it your best shot,” Ken said hurriedly, then walked away. He seemed to be avoiding Naoki’s questions.
Before Ken was able to take a step out of the locker room, he turned around and added, “Oh yeah, put on your clothes. You might catch a cold.” After saying that, he winked at Naoki and bit on his lips seductively.
Naoki was flustered seeing this. He immediately held on to his face and felt that it had started to warm up. He really did not like Ken’s personality. He was the playboy type and Naoki knew that if he falls for someone like Ken, he would only end up getting hurt.
Naoki shook the thought of Ken out of his mind, then he started wondering why Ryū was not around. He felt something fishy was going on. Why is Ueno-senpai not around? He’s the team captain. He should be here.
Ken never thought that Ryū’s job was this boring. He helped the coach in conducting the panel interview. There were many students who applied. Oh boy, this is gonna be a long night. Good thing it’s only now that I’m gonna substitute for him. He must make sure the help I gave him will be worth the while and “fix” his “problem” with that Ishikawa cutie.
Ken had been asking the same questions for every applicant. He died and reincarnated multiple times while in the process—that was how long this interview took.
Now, while he was playing with the files in his hand, he noticed that the next one was Naoki. There was a sudden surge of excitement within him. He really thought that this boy was interesting.
While Naoki was seated in front of the interviewers, he introduced himself. Ken rested his arms on top of the table, elbows at a ninety-degree angle, with his hands lazily placed under his chin. It seemed as if he was in a daze, gazing at the boy before him. Ken was certain he did not swing that way, but for some unknown reason, Naoki’s charm somehow captivated him.
“Hirano-san? It’s your turn to ask questions,” the coach said.
Ken, who was still dwelling in his own fantasy world, suddenly felt a striking pain on the back of his head, as if someone had just hit him.
“Ouch!” He looked at the attacker. Feeling wronged, he asked with a scrunched face, “Coach, why did ya hit me?”
“Hirano-san, you have no manners. I’m your coach. If you will not pay attention, you can go home now,” the coach said while clenching his teeth.
Naoki intentionally cleared his throat to ease the awkward atmosphere.
“Hehe, sorry Coach. I guess I didn’t have enough sleep last night,” Ken said while forcing a chuckle.
Not getting any response from the coach, Ken coughed awkwardly and started with his side of the interview, “So, Sakaguchi-san, if I were to ask you out, would you go out with me?”
Shit! What did I just ask? Hahahaha…!
“Eh…excuse me?” Naoki exclaimed, surprised. He looked very uneasy at the moment. His pale face turned to red like a tomato and everyone, who was looking at him, could tell that he was fidgeting.
“Hirano-san, you’re out of your mind. Get out of here! Nakamura-san, come here and cover for your senpai!” The coach roared. He was so angry that he could even kick Ken out of the gym.
In the end, Ken got booted out the interview process. Ryū would definitely go berserk once he found out what Ken just did. Despite this slight fear and uneasiness in him, he still laughed heartily, but then heaved a deep sigh. I’m doomed.
Ken waited outside. He did not want to show his face to the coach because he knew that the coach would definitely kill him. His mind was urging him to go home already, but his heart and body were preventing him to take, not even a single step, out of the gym’s vicinity.
Ken thought that Naoki was his complete opposite. He reckoned that might be the reason why he was somewhat attracted to Naoki. As the saying goes, “Opposites attract.”
Once the interview part was over, Ken hurriedly went back in and sat on the bleachers. He eagerly watched the applicants play. Ken realized that Naoki was quite popular among the girls because he could hear some talking about him. “Hey! They’re supposed to be me cheering on me! I’m the famous casanova in this university and they can’t take that title from me,” Ken muttered to himself and then laughed hysterically.
Hearing his creepy laugh, the girls beside him Ken stared at him, as if they saw a crazy person.
“I’m sorry, ladies! Hehe,” Ken apologized and let out a forced laugh.
The girls stood up and moved to a different side of the bleachers that was far from Ken.
In the end, Naoki was chosen as one of the rookies in the team. Ken felt an inexplicable elation in his heart. Wait, why am I happy for him?
After the crowd left, Ken went to the locker room and waited for Naoki to arrive. The others were already done taking a shower and they were already in the process of changing their clothes. Ken pursed his lips. He was getting bored of waiting. Did he go home already? He asked to himself.
Finally, after everyone left the locker room, Naoki came in. Ken subconsciously hid behind the door of the shower room and peeped through the small opening. Why am I acting like a peeping Tom? Haha…
Naoki moved close to the shower room, making Ken feel somewhat tense. He could see Naoki from the small opening of the door, wiping his sweat with a towel. He looked captivating with his messy hair after wiping his head.
Naoki placed a chair near the door where Ken was hiding. Fortunately, Ken could still see him even though the back of the chair was covering a portion of the small opening.
Naoki started removing his jersey. Ken could only see his back, but he already gulped from the sight of Naoki being topless. Ken noticed beads of sweat running down his firm and muscular back.
Naoki’s back was smooth like ivory and Ken thought that the lightness of his skin was mesmerizing. Like the full moon on a clear night sky, Naoki glimmered magnificently in the dimly lit locker room. He was very masculine, yet he gave off this feminine aura. The sight of his body alone had made Ken yearn to touch Naoki with his own hands.
Naoki turned around and placed his sweat-soaked jersey on top of his bag. Finally, Ken saw his chest. Earlier, Naoki was covering his chest like a girl when they would see someone peeping at them as they changed their clothes. He even had the guts to say that he’s not into me. Heh, so naive and yet so cheeky.
Ken’s body stiffened when he saw that this boy had six-pack abs. Naoki did not look like it at all. He even had those “sex lines” that all women usually sought for from guys. Shit! I can feel something harden in my pants.
“Fuck, Ken! Dude, wake up! You’re a man!” He inwardly said to himself, then slapped his face.
When Ken saw that Naoki was about to remove his gym shorts, his eyes opened wide. This was the part that he was waiting for. His heart seemed to have skipped a beat that he might even get a heart attack from this. His animal instincts were taking over his sanity. He was like the alpha male of a pack of wolves, howling for a she-wolf, ready to mate.
Ken could feel beads of sweat rolling down on his forehead. He was getting a bit shaky. He gulped hard. He knew right then and there that he was definitely turned on from this sight.
When Naoki was loosening the draw-string of his shorts, somebody came in.
Ken made a mental facepalm. Jesus! Why did someone have to ruin this perfect scene!
“Hey, Sakaguchi-san!” The coach called.
“Yes Coach?” Naoki responded and immediately put on a new T-shirt.
“Come with me outside, I want to introduce you to your teammates,” the coach ordered.
Without hesitation, Naoki stepped out of the locker room with the coach.
Whaaaat the…?!? Ken lost all control. His body became listless, then he flopped on the floor as he felt his legs soften. That was an opportunity for me, and I lost it! T.T