I had just returned from late volleyball practice. As soon as I walked into the house I could feel something was off.
My parents were sitting at the table. My mother pulled out a chair and motioned for me to sit.
I dumped my bag to the side and did as she asked.
"Tooru." My father began. "We need to talk."
"About?" I asked.
"Your last test results."
"What about them? I kept them above average."
"Above average isn’t good enough, Tooru." My mum chided. "You need to get top marks!"
"87 in Maths, Tooru?" My dad added. "Tobio is 2 years younger than you and he got 94."
"Tooru, you need to keep your grades up, why don’t you be more like Tobio? He can manage to balance volleyball and schoolwork!"
"Plus you’ve been coming home so late now and with more injuries. We’re concerned that volleyball…might not be the best thing for you right now."
That was it.
"YOU DON’T UNDERSTAND ANYTHING!!" I screamed into their faces, startling them before grabbing my bag and storming up the stairs.
I saw Tobio at his bedroom door wondering what happened. I stopped to glare at him before walking past to my room and slamming the door behind me.
I crashed into my bed and started punching my pillows.
They don’t understand anything!
All the pain I’ve went through to get to where I am!
Its all Tobio’s damn fault! That brat!
He just has to be the ‘best son’ doesn’t he? The genius, the star of the show.
While I’m here scrawling up to reach the top, he practically has evERYTHING HANDED TO HIM ON A SILVER PLATTER!
The last punch missed and I ended up punching the hard wooden headboard.
I bit down the pain and broke down. Sobbing, I tore the blankets off my bed. I pulled the books off the shelf and threw them around in a fit of rage. I went to my desk and pushed the sheets of paper aside, sending them scattering.
I caught sight of the photo.
I picked it up.
It was me and Tobio. The day we went to the amusement park. We had gotten candy floss all over our faces. We were laughing together.
I tore it in half.
Then I heard the door creak open.
"Nii-san?" A voice hesitantly asked.
I turned around to face him.
What are you doing here.
He took a tentative step towards me.
He was right in front of me.
DON’T COME NEAR ME.
I felt my arm raise and draw back.
My hand collided with the side of Tobio’s face with a loud sound.
I was shocked.
"…s-sorry." I was shaking.
I looked into his face and stopped. His expression was one of confusion, worry but mostly hurt.
I could see tears threatening to spill over. In all the times we’ve been together, I’ve never seen him cry.
"Oh Tobio," I reached out to him and wrapped my arms around him. "I am so sorry." My voice began to shake and I could feel a fresh wave of tears streaming down my face.
"I’m a horrible person. It isn’t your fault, it never was."
"It’s me, this whole thing is just me being insecure, I shouldn’t have got so worked up-oh my gods Tobio can you ever forgi-"
I was cut off by arms around me and a “It’s ok nii-chan. I forgive you.”
At this I just hugged and cried harder.
"I’m the worst brother ever." I whispered, mostly to myself.
"No you’re not, nii-chan." He pulled back, putting his hands on my shoulders. "Listen to me, you’re the best brother ever. You’re strong and smart, a great setter! You inspired me and I…look up to you a lot. Also I know that you’re always looking out for me in your own way."
"Tobio…" I didn’t know how to respond. "Thank you."
"No problem, nii-chan." He smiled. "Do you want me to help uh…" He gestured to the ruins of my room.
"Thank you." I said again, picking up papers off the ground. He followed suit and we cleaned up in silence.
Everything was back in place after a while. Well, nearly everything. I looked at the two halves of the photo on my desk.
"Nii-chan." Tobio appeared beside me, holding sticky tape and a frame.
"You always know what to don’t you." I smirked, taking the items from him. Together we taped and framed the photo.
"It’s lacking something, don’t you think?" He piped up after we were done.
"Hmm, you’re right." An idea popped into my head. Grabbing a sharpie from a container on my desk, I pulled the lid off and started writing.
"There we go." Satisfied with my work, I capped the sharpie and put it back into place.
"Yes, now its perfect." Tobio agreed.
Oikawa Tooru & Oikawa Tobio it said on the top.
Brothers to the end. Was the inscription on the bottom.
The sides were embellished with hearts, stars and happy emojis.
"Tomorrow, I’ll teach you how to jump serve."