he is not his friend
Daisuke woke up.
Daisuke removed With from his face and tried to remember what breathing was like without fine white fur in your face.
Daisuke turned over.
Towa-chan screamed back.
Fifteen minutes later, a piece of toast in his mouth and running for school, Daisuke wondered why his life was so weird.
Ten minutes after that, being choked by Saehara while the latter explained that DARK HAD SENT A NOTICE and TONIGHT HE WAS GETTING GREAT PICTURES FOR SURE, Daisuke remembered why. He also remembered his mother had told him to be home on time, and promised himself a lunch period of calling his mother repeatedly on his cell phone and yelling hysterically at her.
Not, he thought, dropping into his seat and discovering that With had added a decorative edge to his homework, in a pattern called 'I have incisors and you aren't paying attention to me', that it would do any good, but he felt he should make the effort.
Satoshi woke up.
Satoshi tried to sit up, and had to lie down again until the dizzy spell passed.
Satoshi made his way very carefully to the bathroom, threw up, and got ready for school, trying not to lean heavily on his furniture.
Satoshi stopped at a combini and bought a meat bun.
Satoshi arrived at school and watched as Niwa skidded into the classroom, only to be ambushed by Saehara.
Satoshi knew damn well why his life was so fucked up, so he concentrated on the thin, high ringing in his head until it retreated.
Neither of them expected to have a particularly good day.
Lately Niwa had been eating lunch with Satoshi. Satoshi wasn't sure why. It was just something Niwa had cooked up in his weird excuse for a brain, and there was probably no real reason for it. (Satoshi had a theory that what really controlled Niwa was a sort of minor chaos system, composed entirely of random numbers that occasionally produced things like 'I should make friends with Hiwatari-kun today!' or 'Hiwatari-kun is my /friend/, he won't let Krad kill me!' The horrible thing was that Niwa was usually right.)
Ever since the Ice Cream Incident, though, Niwa would pick up his lunch, look nervous and guilty at Satoshi and slink rapidly away.
Satoshi didn't mind very much. Niwa had an awful habit of popping up with comments like 'why are you only eating half your roll?' or else reading the nutritional information on Satoshi's wrappers and asking him what 'sorbitan monostearate' meant. Niwa, of course, had lunches that probably qualified as minor works of art, because Niwa Emiko was the scariest female Satoshi had ever heard of.
Satoshi watched Niwa slink away, and didn't sigh. He pulled out his juice box ('why is it called grape juice when there's no actual fruit content in it?') and meat bun and went to the roof.
/You're sulking, Satoshi-sama./
/I told you this would happen. He doesn't want to be your FRIEND if you feel that way./
I thought I told you to shut up.
Satoshi ignored him. He wasn't particularly hungry but even if Niwa wasn't really talking to him, he had another awful habit of turning and looking at him like a rabbit at a snake, and if Niwa saw him with his lunch uneaten he would probably give Satoshi a look that meant 'I'm running scared but I'm still your friend and why did you not eat lunch? Because if it's my fault I will spend the next week acting like a kicked puppy'. This was another reason why Satoshi hadn't wanted to be friends with Niwa. Niwa cared about people. Satoshi didn't understand it. Niwa had every reason in the world to ignore the weird guy chasing him and get on with his life, and yet he chose to spend time with Satoshi.
/Obviously, the Niwa is insane. And trying to take you away from me./
That would first require he actually want to take me away from you.
/Well, naturally. He's doing it to spite me./
Niwa doesn't want to spite anybody.
/It's charming how you think the best of him even when he's all but vomiting at the sight of you./
Satoshi unwrapped his bun and took a bite.
::I hope you realize you are the biggest, fattest, weeniest, big, fat weenie of all the big, fat weenies I have every seen.::
Daisuke, sitting on a slightly damp patch of concrete when he could have been up on the roof in what sun there was, ignored Dark.
::I mean, not that eating lunch with the Honorable Commander Hiwatari was one of your bright ideas in the first place, but --::
:I don't want to hear about it, Dark.:
::I'm just saying.::
:What you're saying is that I'm a big, fat weenie simply because I feel a little awkward around Hiwatari-kun right now.:
::No, what I'm SAYING is that he came on to you -- ooh, pretty girl! -- and you are hiding from him. Like a big, fat weenie.::
Daisuke glanced at the girl. She was actually sort of pretty, although Dark held a theory called 'there are no ugly girls. Some are simply less attractive than others -- hi baby wanna see my etchings?' :That doesn't make me a weenie.:
::Yes it does.::
:No, it doesn't.:
:Does no -- why am I arguing about this with you?:
::Because you feel guilty over being a big, fat weenie. As well you should, you big, fat weenie.::
Daisuke pulled his phone out of his bag and hit speed-dial for home. "Hi, Dad? Can I talk to Mom? Thanks."
::Ignoring me isn't going to help, you know.::
"MOTHER," shrieked Daisuke into his cell phone, "I HAVE A TEST TOMORROW. YOU KNEW I HAD A TEST TOMORROW. HOW COULD YOU -- DON'T HANG UP I'M NOT DONE --"
::Weenie, weenie, weenie.::
Daisuke glared at his phone. "She KNOWS I have a test tomorrow. I know she does."
::Which is more important, a stupid test or being the sexy legendary thief, Dark Mo -- FUCKER.::
::SAGA AT THREE O'CLOCK.::
Daisuke looked around wildly. Saga-kun saw him look, and a wide, maniac grin spread across his face.
"Niwa-kun!" bellowed Saga-kun. "I just want a word about -- "
::RUN, DAISUKE! RUN LIKE THE SISSY LITTLE GIRL YOU ARE!::
The problem with being at school was that he couldn't use any of the tricks he knew, and remembering NOT to take a flying leap off a six foot wall and land running was harder than actually running away. Mostly because thanks to his insane mother, the secret techniques of the Niwa were engraved in his brain and his muscles and he had an awful tendency to use them when he was scared. Which was sort of the point, but wasn't much help when you were trying to escape from someone and not reveal your secret to the world.
"Niwa!" bellowed Saga-kun. "Did you hear that Dark was going to steal --"
"NO I DIDN'T I DON'T KNOW I DON'T CARE GO /AWAY/," howled Daisuke.
Daisuke narrowly missed crashing into a group of girls. "Sorry!" he said, and skidded around the corner.
"NI -- OOF!"
"Watch where you're going!"
Daisuke looked around desperately. That pileup wouldn't hold Saga-kun for long -- in fact, he could hear him untangling himself already -- and he had to find somewhere to hide.
"NIWA! Wait, I just want to ask you --"
Daisuke ran faster. Blind instinct led him up the staircase up to the roof, and he was almost there, Saga hot on his heels, when he remembered.
:Oh no that's where Hiwatari-kun --:
Hiwatari-kun, with his usual impeccable timing, swung the door open.
CRAP, thought Daisuke. He tried to stop, anyway.
::OK, when I was saying you shouldn't be avoiding him? I did not mean 'run into his waiting arms'.::
Daisuke tried to get his breath. :Shut UP, Dark.:
::At least you always end up on top.::
Daisuke tried to sit up, and discovered the only place to put his hands was, well, Hiwatari-kun. He turned red and tried to figure out how to untangle himself. Hiwatari-kun was muttering under his breath, something that sounded like numbers.
::Is that powers of three he's reciting?::
:How should I know?:
::That kid needs help.::
"I'm really sorry, Hiwatari-kun," he said. "I didn't mean to, um, I mean, Saga-kun was chasing me, um, are you all right?"
"NIWA!" bellowed Saga-kun, bounding up the stairs.
"GEH," said Daisuke.
Hiwatari-kun blinked at him, straightened his glasses and looked at Saga-kun.
Daisuke looked behind him and saw that Saga-kun had a camera-phone. He squeaked.
::Dammit, every time I think you couldn't possibly be less manly you manage to surprise me.::
"I wouldn't, if I were you," said Hiwatari-kun.
Saga-kun grinned like a shark. "This sort of thing is /very popular/."
Daisuke decided dignity had never been one of his strong points in the first place and anything was better than Saga-kun with blackmail photos. He scrambled off Hiwatari-kun.
"No," said Hiwatari-kun. "I don't think you understand. I really wouldn't if I were you."
Saga-kun hesitated. Hiwatari-kun looked at him, calm and polite, and really if Daisuke had been getting that look he would be gibbering apologies and backing away.
Saga-kun flipped his phone shut. "Hiwatari Satoshi, isn't it? You could make a lot of money with your face."
"I'm sorry to say I don't particularly want to," said Hiwatari-kun, still politely. "Why don't you leave Niwa alone for now, Saga?"
Saga-kun stared at Hiwatari-kun for a long moment. Then he shrugged and looked at Daisuke, smiling. "I'll see you tonight, Niwa."
There was an awkward silence.
"Um," said Daisuke.
"Care to explain why you're being chased by talent agents, Niwa?"
"Because my life sucks," said Daisuke.
"That isn't a reason."
"He thinks I'm Dark and I think he wants me to join his agency and I have no idea why."
Hiwatari-kun raised his eyebrow. "Why he thinks you're Dark, or why he wants you to join his agency?"
"Both," said Daisuke, miserably.
Hiwatari-kun opened his mouth, and was interrupted by the sounds of whining coming up from the stairwell. "Ow ow ow why do I have to -- OW."
Saga-kun reappeared, in the grasp of his secretary-slave-sidekick person.
"He has something he wants to tell you," said Saga-kun's secretary-thingy. Even from several feet away, Daisuke could see him tighten his grasp on Saga-kun's shoulder. "Doesn't he."
"I'm very sorry I chased you across campus and made you trip into Hiwatari and tried to take blackmail pictures," said Saga-kun. "OW."
"Please forgive the moron," said Saga-kun's thingy-person.
"Um," said Daisuke.
Saga-kun's secretary-thingy managed to bow and force Saga-kun to bow at the same time. "If you will excuse us." He dragged Saga-kun off by the scuff of his neck.
Neither Daisuke nor Hiwatari-kun spoke for several minutes, staring at the stairwell.
"Is your life always this surreal, Niwa?" said Hiwatari-kun finally. He sounded curious.
Hiwatari-kun sighed. "Do you need anything, Niwa? Now that you're no longer being chased by people trying to make a star out of you."
"I wish I knew what sort of star he was trying to make out of me," mumbled Daisuke. Considering that the first time he'd met Saga-kun, he'd gotten pointed at and ordered to strip. And then Saga-kun had tried to /help/. "Um. No? I'll, um. Get going now."
"You do that," said Hiwatari-kun. Daisuke wasn't always the most observant of people -- as Dark frequently pointed out -- but there was something in Hiwatari-kun's voice that made him stop and look at him.
"Are you feeling all right?" he asked.
"Yes, Niwa." Hiwatari-kun pushed up his glasses.
Daisuke studied him. Hiwatari-kun was always pale, but it was usually a healthier pale, which didn't exactly make sense when Daisuke thought it through. Usually the undertones were more ivory, but right now they were verging on blue. "Are you sure? Did you eat anything?"
"Yes, I am," said Hiwatari-kun, in a voice like a razor. "Yes, I did, and I don't see how it's any of your business, Niwa."
Daisuke opened his mouth and realized it wasn't his business. But still, he thought helplessly. "I can't help worrying about one of my friends."
Hiwatari-kun looked at him, really looked at him, with eyes gone nearly black. "Am I?"
"Are you what?" said Daisuke, confused. Sometimes he felt like he and Hiwatari-kun were having two entirely different conversations at the same time.
"One of your friends."
"Of course you are --" began Daisuke, and stopped.
Hiwatari-kun gave him a look that Daisuke recognized; tired and annoyed. "I'm not your friend, Niwa."
"Yes, you are," said Daisuke. "I mean, I like you." That was what happened when you were friends, right? You were friends because you liked each other.
"I," said Hiwatari-kun, very deliberately, "do not like you."
"Eh?" said Daisuke.
"You heard me, Niwa. I do not like you."
Daisuke stared at Hiwatari-kun. He didn't know what to think. Hiwatari-kun couldn't be serious -- or he could be. He didn't think that Hiwatari-kun hated him, but Hiwatari-kun's eyes had darkened to a night sky blue, cold and endless. "Um," he said.
"I've never liked you," said Hiwatari-kun. "From the first."
Daisuke flushed miserably. "Why didn't you say so sooner, then?" he said. "I'm sorry to have bothered you." He turned and ran blindly down the stairs.
Satoshi heard the bell ring for the end of lunch, but he wasn't really interested in going to class.
/How very noble of you, Satoshi-sama./
Satoshi didn't answer. He kept his head buried in his arms.
/I'll still kill him, you know. I don't care if you hate him or love him,/ said Krad. His voice was oddly gentle. /I'll kill him. Then he won't hurt you anymore. I promise./