it was a normal day at school despite the incident that happened that morning. however, it was better than most.
tsukishima looked for yamaguchi in every class, trying to keep his sullen appearance. his heart sunk every time he saw no green haired boy in the seat next to him. maybe he did want a friend? the thought had despised him for years, so how come one boy could change that so suddenly? tsukishima was confused. did he possibly like yamaguchi? feelings had never been his strong suit. he'd known him for a day, not even, and the very thought of his beautiful face made tsukishima giddy.
at lunch tsukishima sat at his table in the corner all alone. he liked it. he could read his books in peace, lost in his wild imagination. but today while reading he felt someone sit down next to him. someone warm, smaller than him and the scent of strawberries enveloping him with a whoosh. a small finger tapped him on the shoulder tentatively. tsukishima turned his head to face the person next to him. a small, freckled button nose and large hazel eyes stared up at him, flinching slightly when tsukishima looked back.
"uh- um hello, it's me, yamaguchi," the small boy stuttered, "can i sit with you? it's my first day here and i don't know anyone else." he looked anxious, fiddling with his hands and biting his lips.
after a moment of realization tsukishima responded with a gruff "hm," and turned back to his book. out of the corner of his eye he saw yamaguchi smile brightly, his pearly white teeth forming a grin that outshined the sun. tsukishima felt his heart flutter.
"thanks tsukki! i brought you something," yamaguchi exclaimed, pulling out a small keychain.
tsukishima put down his book softly and placed his headphones around his neck. he needed to stop getting so excited when yamaguchi said "tsukki," it was just an innocent nick name. tsukishima took the keychain from yamaguchi and raised his eyebrow as he cupped it in his hands. his breath caught in his throat when he saw the silver metal star. it was on a dainty chain, cuffs interlacing and the star sparkling slightly when the light hit it.
"do- do you like it.. tsukki? it's a apology gift for bumping into you. i didn't mean to upset you or embarrass you," and under his breath he added, "i think astrology is neat too ya know." tsukishima froze at the last comment.
did he really? could he.. maybe? no. you met him earlier today ya dumbass. you can't just spill your secrets to him. remember what happened with kuroo?
tsukishima felt a pang of sadness and anger as he remembered. kuroo had ruined him, tuning him cold and emotionless. but something about yamaguchi felt different. "maybe.." he said in a hushed voice.
"hm? did you say something?" yamaguchi asked, his big doe eyes filled with concern. when tsukishima didn't respond he sighed and turned to rummage through his backpack.
shit. i said that out loud.
yamaguchi placed his lunch on the table and started eating slowly, stealing quick glances up at tsukishima. his eyes studied him, soft and curious, long eyelashes hiding his eyes. of course tsukishima liked the gift, hell, he loved it. for a large guy, tsukishima liked the small things in life. he appreciated the smell of his favorite hoodie and how on certain nights you could see the stars more clearly. he liked the details that came with mathematics and the small likeness between all dinosaurs. he really liked how yamaguchi smelled like strawberries and how his thoughtful gaze seemed to twinkle at tsukishima.
"thank you," tsukishima grumbled and shoved the key chain deep into his pocket. of course he had wanted to say more, but he thought it was too soon for that. tsukishima hardly knew this kid, it was far to early for feelings and shit. he wasn't good with words anyways, so tsukishima opted for another route of expression. he slid another book across the table to yamaguchi. "i really liked this book, maybe you would like to borrow it.." tsukishima said and lifted his head to meet yamaguchi's wondering stare. he felt pleased when he saw his eyes light up and sparkle with delight.
"thank you, THANK YOU tsukki! i'm so glad you enjoy astronomy like i do," yamaguchi would have continued to ramble on but tsukishima stopped him with a glare, coming out meaner than he had meant it. "sorry tsukki," yamaguchi whispered and hung his head, gently taking the book in his hands. he ran his palms over the cover and traced the tips of his fingers over the pages and pages of words. a small smile spread across his face as he read, his cheeks glowing.
tsukishima watched him read. he looked so calm reading, his anxiety fading quickly. placing his head in his hand and verifying yamaguchi wasn't watching, tsukishima took the keychain out of his pocket and analyzed at it.
what a thoughtful gift. no one has ever done something like this for me before. heh, it really does remind me of him.. is this what having a friend is like?
he felt his eyes crinkle and his cheeks turn red with blush. the two sat in silence, both entranced in the gifts they had been given. suddenly the bell rang, signaling that lunch had ended. yamaguchi jumped, making tsukishima giggle quietly. smiling and packing up his bag, he stood up to leave, only to feel a small tug on his jacket.
"could y- you walk me to my next class please," yamaguchi asked nervously, "the halls get really crowded and people pick on me. it's unpleasant to say the least.."
tsukishima blinked and looked at him surprised.
he really wants ME to walk him? i've been nothing but rude to him.
"why do people make fun of you?" tsukishima replied bluntly, disregarding the previous question. he genuinely wanted to know, because from his perspective, there was nothing to make fun of.
"o- oh, um, well,"
"i don't understand what there is to tease," tsukishima continued, narrowing his eyes. this wasn't a joke right?
yamaguchi blushed furiously and covered his face. tsukishima instinctively reached his arm up and took yamaguchi's hand, removing it from his cheeks. he brought it down and let it rest in between his palms.
"please tell me, yamaguchi," tsukishima pried, strain in his voice. why he cared so much for the boy he'd met a few hours ago even tsukishima himself couldn't understand.
"w- well, it's my freckles mostly," yamaguchi sighed. he chewed on his lip again.
tsukishima felt his face fall. something he found so charming was the one thing yamaguchi hated.
"it's fine if you think they're ugly and stupid too, just don't tell me. i'd like to think i have a friend even if it's not true. ever since grade school i've been bullied about them and how i need to be more like a real man. i used to get thrown on the ground and people would take my backpack. a lot of the time i never got my stuff back and it's pretty embarrassing to show up to class with no supplies," yamaguchi laughed lightly.
"i don't think they're stupid," tsukishima spluttered, "i don't think they're ugly either. in fact, i rather like them.." tsukishima felt flustered. since when had it been so hard to talk to boys? "don't worry, i can walk you," he muttered. yamaguchi squealed with delight and grabbed tsukishima's arm, any disappointment disappearing as quickly as it had appeared. the blood rushed to tsukishima's face as he gained his composure and started walking towards the large mass of people in the hall. yamaguchi chatted and chatted, happily staying close to tsukishima's side, the touch of his hand sending tingles through tsukishima. every once in a while he would hear a, "tsukki!" and his heart leapt into his throat, beating so loud he thought the whole school would hear it. but amidst all of these emotions tsukishima kei only had one thought as he stared ahead, trying to ignore the boy latched to his arm.