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Asterias Amurensis

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Josuke knocked on the door of Rohan Kishibe’s house. He had arrived merely to come retrieve Koichi, as he knew he would never be welcome to step before Rohan’s home for any other reason anyway, especially since the famous manga artist so blatantly hated his guts. Josuke sighed aloud as he yet again reflected upon the hatred. As a guy who never had much trouble with enemies among acquaintances, something about his constant feud with Rohan irked him.
Deep down he knew he didn’t really hate the guy, but honestly respected him and his work. It was only Rohan who started every little fight between them, and Josuke never had much of a choice other than to go along with it and fight back. He was a man of honour, after all, and as much as he was supposed to never lose, letting Rohan win sometimes brought a bit of joy to Josuke. Seeing the manga artist smile was a rare accomplishment for everyone, so Josuke savoured every moment he saw the man’s mouth twist happily.

Rohan answered the door. “Josuke,” he spat as a look of disgust crossed his eyes.

Despite the obvious displeasure, Josuke smiled at him. “Morning, Rohan.”
Rohan held a cold stare for a few moments.

“Josuke!” Koichi exclaimed, breaking the silence and waving from behind Rohan.

“Hey Koichi! Ready for school?” Josuke grinned, dismissing Rohan’s aggressive gaze.

“Yup, let me just go get my bag; I left it up in Rohan’s office.” With that, the little silver-haired boy dashed out of sight, and Josuke listened for his steps hit the wooden floor as he retreated.

Rohan sighed. “Couldn’t you just meet Koichi at school instead of approaching my door for him every morning he stops by?”

Josuke shrugged, “I like to make sure Koichi’s alright, I guess.”

Rohan’s eyes narrowed. “And you think something could happen to him while he is with me?”

“No, god no!” Josuke stammered, “I just like to watch out for him, that’s all!”

Rohan snorted. “I’m sure that’s all. Your distrust in me is alarmingly plain to see, Josuke.”

“And if you assume that much, I assume it’s mutual to you?” Josuke pondered, meeting Rohan’s displeasing attitude.

“You could say that. Although, if Koichi can tolerate you, I can as well.”

This comment took Josuke by surprise. “I… Rohan, I hope you know that’s the nicest thing you’ve ever said to me.”

Rohan looked at his feet, saying no more. Josuke narrowed his eyes at the manga artist, but couldn’t quite read his emotions, except the fact that there seemed to be a bit more colour in his face.
Josuke smiled, enjoying seeing Rohan slightly flustered.

“JOSUKE, WE’RE LATE FOR SCHOOL!” Koichi yet again broke the silence as he rammed into Rohan’s back, sending them both toppling into Josuke.
The three rolled down the few steps of Rohan’s deck and into the grass.
“Gomen ne sai, Rohan-sensei!” Koichi scrambled to his feet and offered a hand to Rohan, who took it and rose to his feet.

Another surprise to Josuke was that he turned to Josuke and offered his hand to him wordlessly.
Josuke hesitated before taking his hand gingerly, and Rohan pulled him to his feet.
For a moment they locked eyes, faces only inches apart, before they both turned away from each other and dusted themselves off in unison, both of their cheeks heating up.

“Josuke, we are SO LATE!” Koichi grabbed onto Josuke’s wrist and tugged him in the direction of their school. “Arigato, Rohan-san!” He called behind him at the red-faced celebrity as he began his pursuit of their school, Josuke in tow behind him.

Rohan watched the two run off together, his gaze lingering on Josuke; the abnormally tall student was hardly keeping up with the oddly short Koichi.
Rohan couldn’t get his thoughts in order. He knew Josuke was a disrupter of peace for him, but never before had he let Josuke get this far.
The manga artist scoffed as he realized how stupid he was for helping Josuke up. He obviously didn’t want Josuke getting the wrong idea; his hate for the guy was supposed to be ongoing and never faltering. But this time, his feelings seem to have a change of pace.
Or, alternatively, his true feelings took the wheel.

The green-haired stand user buried his face in his hands. This was quite the predicament he had gotten himself into, even if it was merely a feud against himself.

I hate Josuke Higashikata; He burned my house, Rohan thought to himself aggressively.
But his heart knew Josuke never initiated any hatred towards Rohan. So why did he really hate him? It surely wasn’t because of the house incident. Rohan knew he only used that to convince himself that he actually had a reason. Did he just hate the man to spite him? No, that wasn’t it either. Spiting him for no reason whatsoever was not Rohan Kishibe’s style. Was he jealous of Josuke’s friendship with Koichi? No, that couldn’t be it; Koichi worshipped Rohan as the celebrity he was.

Rohan knew the only possible answer could be that he hated Josuke to mask any other emotion he felt towards him. He hit himself in the head.

I feel no other emotion towards Josuke Higashikata other than hate.

“Rohan,” A deep and slightly older voice broke his train of thought.

Rohan’s head jerked up to see a yellow cab pulled over in front of his house, and in the back seat, Jotaro Kujo.

“Jotaro,” Rohan nodded in greeting.

“Get in.”

Rohan arched a brow. “Why?”

“You look like you need a break and I’m studying starfish at the beach,” Jotaro stated, as if that was the answer for everything.

Rohan sighed, but he knew Jotaro was right. He did need a break. And maybe, just maybe, he could talk to Jotaro to sort out his issues.
Jotaro was a man of few words and cared even less for other people’s problems, but right now, the marine biologist was all that Rohan had.

He climbed into the back seat with Jotaro. “Fine, let’s go to the beach.”