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Eijun won’t admit it, but something inside him hurts a little when he comes into the room and he sees Kuramochi’s things packed up in a couple moving boxes. It’s the third years last night in the dorms, their high school careers over. Eijun is only glad they could end on a much better note than the year before.

It has been a couple days since their win, the ultimate victory and title of national champions, and the team has been celebrating ever since. Eijun had been forbidden to train after he had been hit by a hit-back ball and fallen over, nearly dislodging his non-dominant arm from the shoulder. He doesn’t mind too much; they won, he was the ace, he can afford to take a break to keep the record going for the fall.

What he can’t afford, however, is to wait another day to get something off his chest.

Tomorrow the third years will leave, and while they would still attend the same school Eijun was afraid something would be broken. So before that can happen he is determined to make the best of the situation and take the plunge.

Kuramochi is still in a meeting with the coach about who the next captain and vice-captains will be, but as soon as he is back Eijun will set his plan into action. It isn’t anything fancy; he is simple minded after all, but it will at the very least be effective.

Anxiously sorting through his shoujo manga to try and find something to read while he waits has little effect on how slow time goes. What usually makes him cry and squeal in delight only feels like a repetitive punishment as he waits for the minutes to slowly drag on by.

When Kuramochi does come back, Eijun is off his bed in a second and out the door before he can be wrestled into a chokehold for not properly greeting his senpai. The poor first year who shares their room is awkwardly trying to calm his third year upperclassman down but Eijun isn’t hearing the end of that conversation; he has more important things to do.

Eijun hops up the stairs to the second floor, hurriedly knocking on the third door from the left. To his surprise ot isn’t Okumura who opens but Miyuki, looking as if he had been on his way out with his shoes still on. He also seems surprised by who stands outside his door.

”What is it, Sawamura?” Miyuki asks, surprise quickly disguised behind a neutral expression. Miyuki was good at that, hiding away what he really thinks.

”Come with me, senpai,” Eijun motions to the stairs, but it probably looks like a weird shoving motion with how he swings his arms.

”You’re not going to try and get me to play catch with you, right?” Miyuki asks sceptically, eyes narrowing in warning about Eijun even suggesting it. To which Eijun rolls his eyes, in return.

No , I want to talk,” when Miyuki gives a prompting raise with his eyebrow Eijun casts a look into the room and sees Okumura fake-reading on his bed, trying to discreetly observe the situation between his two senpai, ”alone.”

Miyuki’s eyes widen at the conspiratory whisper, Eijun isn’t exactly known for secrecy, or privacy for that matter, so he can understand that the about-to-be-out-of-date captain finds it shocking that he wants a one on one.

”Ok, I was going to the conbini anyway,” Miyuki concedes and steps out of his dorm room, closing the door behind him and for once obediently following Eijun to where he leads.

Eijun takes it to the stairs overlooking the field, hyper aware of the fact that Miyuki is staring at the back of his head the entire time. Nervousness begins itching his skin when they are halfway there, and his heart is doing small somersaults by the time they make it to the place he chose.

For a moment he doesn’t say anything, and neither does Miyuki. Together they stare at the grounds that had been their life for the past few years—and at least Eijun thinks how that time is soon coming to an end for one of them.

”Do you remember the first time we met, Miyuki-senpai?” Eijun asks, lowering his eyes from the grounds to his hands, which are nervously knotting around themselves in an attempt to calm himself.

”I remember a loud brat coming out of nowhere, disrupting practice and lecturing someone four years older and three times heavier than him,” Miyuki snickers, but when Eijun doesn’t take the bait Miyuki clears his throat and ads, ”yeah, of course I do.”

Those words make Eijun’s throat pinch together in a painful lump, so he has to take a breath before he continues.

”That day changed my life. You did it because you thought it sounded fun, but to me it was…” Eijun pauses, finds the words he had used to sort out his own feelings, ”if you hadn’t been there, I wouldn’t have come here. I probably never would have considered baseball as anything more than a fun club activity to do with my friends. But thanks to that time, when you caught my pitches and believed in my ability, I am here. It was important to me.”

Eijun goes quiet again, giving Miyuki a window of opportunity to interrupt, because Miyuki is smart and can probably see where Eijun is going. He only hopes he will be let down gently.

Except that the catcher says nothing, waiting patiently for Eijun to continue.

So he does.

”You’re the reason I came here,” Eijun confesses, mustering up courage to look at Miyuki, meet his gaze, ”you changed my life.”

He sees how Miyuki stiffens, probably realizing what Eijun is about to say next. However, he’s come this far—no reason to turn back now.

”It didn’t happen right away, because you are a serious pain in the butt when you want to be, but,” again, a steadying breath, sweaty palms clamping together to make his hands stop shivering in fright, ”I like you, Miyuki Kazuya.”

Oh god, he said it.

A weight is lifted from him, but a new sense of dread settles in its place when Miyuki says nothing, only stares dumbly as the moment stretches into true awkwardness.

”You…” Miyuki points at Eijun and then to himself, ”like me?”

”I-it’s not like I can help it,” Eijun quickly amends, ”I just wanted to tell you before you leave the team. You don’t have to give me a response or anything, I know you don’t like me like that.”

Eijun releases a huge breath, taking a second to calm himself before he smiles, without looking the other in the eye, ”that’s all.”

He makes to turn away, to run away, but a grip on his elbow stops him in his tracks. Heart hammering, Eijun turns around and looks at Miyuki’s hand that is holding him back, ”what?”

”Sorry, this is just,” Miyuki makes a wishy-washy hand gesture, ”a lot.”

”I told you, you don’t have to think about it. I just wanted it out of my system before you leave.”

”I’m not leaving ,” Miyuki stresses, resisting when Eijun tries to awkwardly take his arm back, ”I’m just going ahead.”

Eijun bites back a comment that to him, it is the same thing. He knows about all the offers Miyuki has gotten from pro teams and universities. Eijun has had a few prospectors himself, but it still felt like a world away, one he was closed off from. Hearing Miyuki talk about moving to it makes his chest hurt, makes him want to hurry forward.

”I’ll be waiting for you, though,” Miyuki mutters, but Eijun hears it loud and clear.

”There’s no telling if I’ll even get into the same team as you though,” Eijun sniffles, tears burning at the corners of his eyes. Miyuki Kazuya can be really insensitive sometimes!

”But we’d be equals, no more captain or student rules,” Miyuki steps in closer, using his hold on Eijun to have him turn around, ”hey, look at me.”

Stubbornly, Eijun continues to look down at Miyuki’s chest, refusing to give in to the order. But when calloused fingers grab his jaw—and squeeze his cheeks like a goldfish—yet Eijun defies expectations by tightly closing his eyes.

A sigh, Eijun feels Miyuki quivering with suppressed laughter, ”I can’t believe I’ve fallen for such a brat.”

”Huh?” Eijun tentatively opens one eye, seeing how Miyuki smirks down at him. But it doesn’t have the usual edge of unfriendliness or superiority. Instead he looks…pleased.

”You couldn’t just wait one more day?” Miyuki squeezes Eijun’s cheeks a bit more, ”you always beat me to the punch.”

”You’ff mahin oo seshe!” Eijun tries to say as best he can, with his lips squished like they are.

”I’m saying I had the opposite thought of you,” Miyuki says, shaking his head in disbelief, ”I was going to confess tomorrow.”

”Cohesch wah?” It is getting a bit uncomfortable, but just as Eijun is about to step away to escape the grip on his face Miyuki lets go, going over the places where his fingers had been with his knuckles, easing the ache. The gesture is unfamiliar, and Eijun’s heart skips an unnecessary beat when he sees Miyuki’s eyes, reflecting the distant city lights, full of something Eijun can only find one word for—tenderness.

”You’re really going to make me say it?” Miyuki smiles, completely undermining his exasperated tone. He leans in closer, his hold on Eijun featherlight, giving him the option to step away if he wishes, ”I like you too, Sawamura.”

Before Eijun’s brain has a chance to fully process those words into anything but oh my god did I hear that right?! there’s a soft pressure on his lips, and Miyuki’s face is—

”Holy shi—,” Miyuki grunts as soon as he hears ( feels ) Eijun talk, so he presses harder, slotting their mouths together in a better angle. Fingers come up to tangle in Eijun’s hair, while his own hands can do little but twitch at his sides. Miyuki is kissing him.

He. Miyuki. Kissing.

Something short circuits in Eijun’s brain. He throws himself into the kiss, hands coming up to grab Miyuki’s shirt in an attempt to hold him closer, to keep him from going away. He has no idea what he is doing, so he whimpers against Miyuki’s lips in a try to get him to do something .

Something he does, but it was kind of the opposite of what Eijun wanted. Miyuki pulls away, glasses just a little bit askew as he smiles boyishly, ”hey, hey, what kind of sounds are you making?”

Contrary to his face, Miyuki sounds adequately affected by the situation, breath coming in short huffs. Smugness rises within Eijun along with the overwhelming happiness at having his feelings returned, because not even Miyuki would stoop so low as to joke around about this, right?

”I wasn’t making any sounds!” Eijun protests, but his barely suppressed grin immediately tells that he absolutely knows what he did, and that he plans to use it to his advantage.

”You’re a handful,” Miyuki shakes his head again before he steps away, hand staying on Eijun’s arm, sliding down to tentatively hook a finger around the other’s.

The contact isn't enough, and Eijun hears Miyuki's question— is this ok?— and rushes to lace their fingers together more intimately, feeling each other's calluses against their skin. The hold is still new, a bit uncertain, but Eijun finds he likes the way Miyuki's fingers fit between his own.

By the way Miyuki's lips are curled in a satisfied smile and squeezes their hands together, he agrees.