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> [FANFIC] It's Never Too Late, Shameless plug
iluvryosuke
  Posted: Mar 3 2007, 12:07 AM


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Hi, I hope you don't mind me posting my fanfic here. Reviews, comments and constructive criticism would be greatly appreciated.

This story can also be found on FF.net under my pen name nieshka. URL is http://www.fanfiction.net/u/536229/

Thanks a lot!

Disclaimer: I dont own Initial D. The original characters are mine.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

CHAPTER ONE

Fourteen years ago

Hideki Watanabe flopped onto the couch and sighed. His seven year old daughter, Miharu, giggled at her father and imitated his actions. Hideki smiled and ruffled the little girls hair. “Arent you full of energy,” he said lovingly.

“Thats because she slept the whole flight here,” a female voice from the kitchen called out.

Miharu bobbed her head up and down, “Mommy said I have to sleep so I wont feel my ears popping.”

Hideki chuckled, “So thats how you did it, Junko.”

Junko entered the living room with a tray filled with refreshments. “Anyway, we must thank the Takahashis for taking care of everything for us here in Japan. The house looks exactly the same as when we had left. I cant believe its already been six years since we moved to the United States. Not to mention that the fridge is completely stocked.”

As if on cue, the doorbell rang. Junko set the tray down and hurriedly rushed to the door. When she opened it, she exclaimed, “Oh, Daisuke, Akiko! Come on in! Hideki, the Takahashis are here!”

The Takahashi couple entered the house. “I saw the taxi pull up in front of your house and I just had to see you right away. Its so great to have you back!” gushed Akiko.

Daisuke walked over to where Hideki was. Hideki stood up and gave Daisuke a big bear hug. “Been a while, Daisuke. How are your boys?”

“Theyre growing up just fine, Hideki. You must come over for dinner tonight so you can see them. Bring Miharu along, she and my sons will get along just fine,” said Daisuke.

“Oh thats a wonderful idea, honey! Keisuke will be thrilled to have a playmate the same age as he is. I remember Junko and I being as big as elephants back then.” said Akiko.

“And drove Hideki and me nuts. I was so glad when you gave birth first,” grinned Daisuke.

Hideki groaned, “Oh, dont remind me. Junko kept me running around for two more months before she gave birth to Miharu.”

“Try having to go through two pregnancies,” countered Daisuke.

Junko laughed, “Have you forgotten that were just here and can hear everything?”
Akiko approached Miharu and said, “Hi, Miharu-chan. How are you?”

“Im OK. Im seven!” said Miharu proudly.

“My son is the same age as you are. Would you like to come over and play with him?” inquired Akiko.

Miharu looked at her father, asking for approval. When her father nodded, she said happily, “OK! Can we go now?”

Junko laughed, “Not now, honey, youll have to wait until tonight.”

“Well, we just dropped by to check if everythings OK with the house and all. Well give you guys a chance to rest up and well see you tonight for dinner. Is seven oclock fine?” Akiko asked.

“That sounds great, Akiko. Well see you later,” confirmed Hideki.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

“Aww mom, why do I have to wear this itchy shirt?” complained seven year old Keisuke.

“Because were having some guests for dinner and I want you to look your best,” explained Akiko patiently.

“Were going to be entertaining dads best friend from college, his wife and daughter. We have to be on our best behavior,” nine year old Ryosuke said.

Akiko smiled at her eldest son, “Yes dear, thats right. Now I want you to watch over your brother and Miharu-chan when she gets here, all right?”

“OK, mom,” nodded Ryosuke.

“Its not like Im a baby that needs to be watched, mom,” grumbled Keisuke.
Just then the doorbell rang. “That must be them. Lets go, kids.”

Akiko ushered her children to the living room and stood there as her husband opened the door.

“Is that Miharu?” whispered Keisuke to his older brother as a girl wearing a pink frilly dress entered the room with her parents.

“My guess is yes,” replied Ryosuke sarcastically.

“Shes pretty,” Keisuke whispered back, ignoring his brothers sarcasm.

Junko led her daughter to where the boys were standing and said, “Miharu, these boys are the Takahashis sons Keisuke and Ryosuke.”

Miharu performed a little curtsy and said, “Hi, Im Miharu.”

Keisuke eagerly approached Miharu and said, “Im Keisuke. Do you want to go upstairs and play?”

Miharu happily nodded. Keisuke grabbed her hand and pulled her upstairs to his room.

“Hey, wait for me, Keisuke! Im supposed to be watching you guys!” Ryosuke shouted impatiently, hurrying to catch up.

Their parents simply laughed and started talking, leaving the children to themselves.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Ryosuke sat on Keisukes bed, reading a book while Miharu and Keisuke played with toy cars on the floor. Miharu stole a glance at Ryosuke and Keisuke whispered to her, “You know, youve been looking and looking at Aniki since we got here.”

Miharu blushed prettily and said, “I cant help it. Your brother looks like a prince from a fairy tale.”

Keisuke burst out laughing, catching Ryosukes attention. “Keep it down, Im trying to read!” said Ryosuke in an annoyed voice.

“Sorry,” chuckled Keisuke.

Once Ryosuke had turned back to his book, Keisuke whispered to Miharu, “He doesnt act like a prince, though. Hes so boring and grouchy.”

Miharu giggled, “I dont think hes that bad.”

“But he is!” insisted Keisuke.

Miharu again gazed at Ryosuke who was still absorbed in his book. Keisuke sighed dramatically and said, “Look, its obvious you have a crush on Aniki. It cant be helped then.”

Miharu turned back to Keisuke and asked, “What cant be helped?”

“Ill have to be your best friend, of course,” said Keisuke as if it was the most obvious thing in the world.

Miharu looked confused at this, “And whys that?”

Keisuke grinned mischievously, “Well, youll need someone to protect you from all the other girls who like Aniki. Besides, Im going to make sure you dont make goo goo eyes at him and act all stupid like all the other silly girls.”

“Why would you do that?” Miharu said, still not sure whats going on.

“I like you. Youre the only girl Ive met whos not scared of bugs and plays with toy cars,” said Keisuke smartly.

“Im scared of spiders though, does that count?” asked Miharu innocently.
Keisuke thought about this and said, “Well, nobodys perfect.”

Miharu and Keisuke laughed together, signaling the beginning of a wonderful friendship.

“Kids,” Ryosuke muttered distractedly.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

A/N: I dont know if there was any mention of the parents of Keisuke and Ryosuke so I just took the liberty of naming them myself. happy.gif
Meteor
Posted: Mar 3 2007, 12:28 AM


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Um, you double posted. Anyway, this fic isn't bad.

*adds to fanfic thread*
iluvryosuke
  Posted: Mar 3 2007, 12:43 AM


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Yeah, I noticed. I sent a PM to the forum moderators already and hopefully they can fix it soon. Anyway, here's chapter two. Thanks!

Disclaimer: I dont own Initial D. The original characters are mine.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

CHAPTER TWO

Five years later

“Miha-chan!” twelve year old Keisuke called out.

Several girls turned at the sound of Keisukes voice. They all sighed dreamily as he passed them by. He paid them no heed whatsoever and continued trying to get Miharus attention.

“MIHA-CHAN!” he shouted this time.

Miharu stopped and turned, her deep purple eyes falling on Keisukes running form. This time, several boys stopped and stared, murmuring among themselves.

When Keisuke finally caught up, Miharu smiled widely, causing the boys watching her to sigh loudly.

“Jeez, are you deaf or something? I called your name twice,” grumbled Keisuke.

Miharus melodious laugh echoed through the halls of Gunma Junior High School. “Sorry Kei-chan. I was concentrating on finding the library.”

Keisuke rolled his eyes at this. “What the heck do you need to go to the library for? Youre already top in our class. Its not as if you need any more studying. Youre almost as boring as Aniki. Besides, its the weekend.”

Miharu punched Keisuke lightly on the shoulder. “You know thats not true.”

“What? About you being the top in our class or about you being boring?” grinned Keisuke mischievously.

“Youre hopeless. So whats up anyway?” asked Miharu.

“I wanted to talk to you about something. How about we head over to the coffee shop?” suggested Keisuke.

Miharu cast a worried look towards Keisuke. “Whats wrong?”

“Its not a matter of life and death if thats what youre worried about. I just need your help to solve a minor inconvenience” said Keisuke while making a face.

Miharu raised her eyebrow and said, “OK. Just let me get the rest of my stuff.”

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Miharu and Keisuke sat in a table for two at a small café near their school.

“So, tell me what this is about. And why couldnt it wait until we got home?” asked Miharu.

“I dont want our parents hearing about this. And for your sake, I dont want Ryosuke to hear about it either,” said Keisuke flatly.

This got Miharu curious. She leaned forward in said, “So? Tell me already.”

“Let me just ask you something first. How many confessions of love have you received since we started junior high?”

Miharu thought about this and replied, “Im not certain of the exact figure but I get at least two confessions a week. But what does this have to do with anything?”

“I get about the same amount as you do and its getting really tiresome. So I have an idea but Im going to need your help,” said Keisuke.

“Im listening.”

“Heres what I thought. Why dont we just pretend that were going out?”

“Are you insane? Who would believe something like that?” said Miharu incredulously.

“Just hear me out. Everyone knows weve been classmates and best friends practically our whole lives, right? Plus, were next door neighbors,” asked Keisuke.

Miharu nodded in agreement. “Cant dispute that.”

“OK. So nobody would find it weird that we just suddenly realized that our feelings for each other have grown deeper and have decided to take our relationship one step further,” concluded Keisuke.

“Suppose I go along with this harebrained scheme of yours, what would this solve?” argued Miharu.

Keisuke raised his hands in exasperation. “Arent you supposed to be the smart one here? If we pretend that were going out, those girls will stop bugging me with their confessions. The same will happen to you, thus getting rid of the minor inconvenience.”

Miharu looked at Keisuke in amazement. “That you would come up with something this preposterous is beyond me. Whats even more preposterous is that Im even sitting here listening to it.”

“Oh, come on, you have to admit Im right. It would solve our problem with unwanted confessions.”

“Yes it would but what happens if Ryosuke hears about this? And Im sure he will,” Miharu said softly.

Keisuke pondered this and after a while he said, “You know, it would make him jealous.”

Miharu looked sharply at Keisuke. “What did you say?”

“I said it would make him jealous. Isnt it a good way to find out if he likes you or not?” said Keisuke casually.

“We couldnt fool someone like Ryosuke that easily, Kei-chan.”

“Oh, Anikis pretty dense when it comes to matters of the heart.”

Miharu burst out laughing at this. “Thats just mean.”

“Well, its true,” Keisuke said defensively.

Miharu ruefully shook her head. “I cant believe Im saying this but all right, lets do it.”

Keisuke let out a loud whoop of delight, causing the other patrons of the café to look at them. Miharu blushed slightly and hurriedly said, “Keep it down, Kei-chan!”

“I knew playing up the Aniki angle would get you to go along with it,” Keisuke said triumphantly.

“Hey, Im not doing this to see if Ryosuke would get jealous or not. In fact, were not going to tell him anything, got it?”

“Its not like he doesnt go to the same school. Hes our senpai, for crying out loud. Its impossible for him not to find out.”

Miharu shook her head empathically. “I still dont want him to hear it from us.”

Keisuke shrugged and said, “Whatever works for you, although I dont see the point of it.”

“What if he tells our parents, though?” wondered Miharu.

“Well worry about that when we get there. Besides, I think our parents would be happy if they heard about it,” said Keisuke breezily.

Miharu sighed, “Tell me again why I agreed to this.”

“On another note, though. Why dont you just tell Aniki how you feel? I mean, youve been crushing on him since we were seven. Just go on up to him and blurt it out,” said Keisuke.

Miharu turned beet red and replied, “I couldnt! I mean, you know how he is. If I do that hed just classify me as one of his fan girls and I just couldnt bear it if he rejected me.”

“Ah, but what if he doesnt?” winked Keisuke.

“Seriously, Kei-chan. You live with the guy and since Im almost always there with you anyway I practically live with him too. When has he ever shown any sign that he thinks of me any differently? He hardly ever talks to me, much more look at me,” said Miharu sadly.

“What makes you say that? He does to pay attention to you. Ive caught him staring at you when hes sure youre not looking at him. And he talks to you more than he talks to any other girl,” countered Keisuke.

“Not as much as Tsugumi.”

Keisuke scoffed. “That doesnt count. Tsugumis our cousin.”

“You really think I have a chance with him?”

“Much more than the other girls do, yes.”

“I dont know. Maybe someday Ill tell him. But right now, I just dont think so.”

“Thats up to you. I say the sooner you do it the better. No telling when someone else might snatch him up. You never know,” warned Keisuke.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Fourteen year old Ryosuke sat at a table in the corner of the library, reading a thick textbook. He was so engrossed in his reading that he jumped slightly when he heard a couple of girls start whispering loudly behind him. He let out a slightly annoyed sigh and started to read again when he heard what they were talking about and he froze.

“Have you heard the news about Keisuke and Miharu?” one girl asked.

“Yes. Oh, Im just so jealous of Miharu!” replied the other.

“Well, theyve been best friends for, like, ever. Its only natural that they fall in love with each other. Ugh, I so want to get mad at Miharu for snatching up Keisuke but I just cant. They look utterly perfect together!”

“I know what you mean. Those two sure are breaking a lot of hearts.”

“Including mine. Keisuke!” she whined.

“Its so sudden though, dont you think? I wonder what happened that made them realize they were in love with each other.”

“I heard that the other day, Rika-chan overheard Keisuke asking Miharu to the café near our school. Then, Rika-chan heard from Hana-chan who was there in the café the same time as Keisuke and Miharu were that they were talking really seriously about something when Keisuke suddenly just started shouting in delight. My guess is Keisuke confessed to Miharu then and she accepted.”

“That is just so romantic!”

Both girls sighed dreamily, each in their own little world when Ryosuke approached them.

“Excuse me, girls I couldnt help but overhear you talking. I just wanted to make sure that my brother Keisuke and his best friend Miharu are the ones youre discussing,” said Ryosuke in a deep voice.

“Yes. Yes they are,” stuttered one girl. The other just looked at Ryosuke with hearts in her eyes.

Ryosuke mumbled his thanks and quickly walked out of the library. The two girls squealed, “Oh my god, Ryosuke Takahashi just spoke to me!”

Ryosuke didnt stop walking until he reached the front door of the school. He took a deep, calming breath and slowed his pace.

Keisuke and Miharu, a couple? Thats impossible. They would have told me. And I would have noticed if anything between them changed. Wouldnt I? he thought.

Ryosuke sat under a tree and set his textbook down beside him. He heaved a sigh. What am I so concerned with anyway? It was bound to happen. Theyve been best friends since they first met.

An image of Miharus laughing face entered his mind. He closed his eyes, savoring the picture for as long as he could, then he shook his head to clear it.

Shes your brothers girlfriend now. And when did you start thinking about Miharu like that anyway? When did Miharu stop being your brothers best friend and your next door neighbor and become absolutely gorgeous?

Ryosuke let out a sigh and whispered, “Ah, hell. Who am I kidding? Ive liked her since the first time I saw her. I was just too proud to admit it. Did she have to be so damn beautiful?”

Ryosuke groaned. “Great. Now shes got me talking to myself. Anyway, theres nothing I can do now. Besides, I wouldnt do anything even if I could. I have so many things to do and so little time to reach my goals. I dont have time for a relationship.”

As if to spite what he just said, Keisuke and Miharu came into view, walking hand in hand and talking animatedly. Ryosukes heart wrenched painfully as he looked at Miharu. Just keep repeating what you just said to yourself over and over and youll be fine, he thought as he called them over.

“Keisuke! Miharu! Over here!”

Miharus heart skipped a beat when she heard Ryosukes voice. Her grip on Keisukes hand tightened. Keisuke squeezed her hand in reassurance and whispered, “Just calm down.”

“Easy for you to say,” grumbled Miharu. “Tell me again why we just cant tell him that were just pretending to be going out.”

“Because,” said Keisuke, “we want to find out how hell react. If you want to back out we could just go ahead and tell him right away.”

When they were seated in front of Ryosuke, Keisuke pulled Miharu closer beside him and put his arm over her shoulder. Ryosuke did his best to ignore it and said instead, “I heard an interesting piece of gossip not ten minutes ago.”

“Oh, really? What about? And since when did you start listening to gossip?” cheerfully asked Keisuke.

Ryosuke wanted to throttle his brother right then and there. He turned his gaze to Miharu and directed his question at her. “Is it true that you two are now officially going out?”

Before Miharu could respond, Keisuke exclaimed, “Yeah, just two days ago. I was so nervous when I confessed to her. I didnt think shed accept me.”

Ryosuke muttered under his breath, “Me neither.”

“What was that?” asked Keisuke. Miharu emitted a small giggle and Ryosuke gave her a small smile, figuring she heard his comment.

“Why didnt you tell me?” asked Ryosuke.

“Well, the whole thing is still quite new for us too. We didnt really tell anyone outright. One of our classmates put the question to us and we simply said yes. Thats when the whole story started to spread.”

Ryosuke again looked at Miharu. “Well, I hope you guys will be happy. And make sure to tell mom and dad.”

Keisuke pulled Miharu even closer to him and kissed her temple tenderly. It took all of Ryosukes effort not to rip Keisuke away from Miharu then. “Aniki, could you not tell mom and dad yet? Were still getting used to the idea of us being together as more than friends but we promise to tell them when were ready.”

Ryosuke knew that he had to get away from them before he did something hed later regret so he gave a curt nod, stood up and walked away. He could feel Miharus eyes fixed on him as he left but he refused to look back, afraid that if he did he wont be able to stop himself from taking her into his arms and stealing her away from his brother.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

“That went well,” said Keisuke as he let go of Miharu and lay down on the grass.

Miharu looked at him in disbelief. “Just which part of that whole conversation can be classified as gone well?”

“The part when Aniki looked ready to beat the daylights out of me for kissing you. And it was just on the forehead! Id like to see what his face will look like if I start kissing your lips,” laughed Keisuke.

“Youre unbelievable. I have half a mind to catch up to Ryosuke and tell him what this is really about.”

“What, and ruin the fun? Youre such a spoilsport.”

“Kei-chan, I dont mind going along with this plan of yours but I really think playing with your brothers feelings is just wrong.”

“Ugh, why do you have to be so in love with Aniki anyway?”

Miharu blushed and lightly swatted Keisukes arm. “I am not.”

“Right. Keep telling yourself that,” said Keisuke sarcastically. “Jeez, just tell him already.”

Miharu shook her head vigorously. “No way. He just doesnt like me that way.”

“Whats not to like? Youre smart. Youre nice. Youre drop dead gorgeous. Quit being such a chicken!”

“Can we talk about something else?”

“Ugh, I give up! You are the most exasperating and stubborn girl I have ever met!”

“But you love me, right?”

Keisuke grinned. “Yeah, I love you. But seriously, do you want to go and tell Aniki the truth about us?”

“Im still a bit ambivalent about it. A big part of me wants to but I think he wouldnt approve of what were doing. On the other hand if we dont tell him wed have to pretend were in love even when were at home and that would mean having to risk our parents finding out about it.”

Keisuke scrutinized Miharu while she was looking down, playing with the blades of grass. Suddenly, everything seemed to click into place. I get it. She doesnt want to lie to Aniki.

“Listen, I got you into this. Ill talk to Aniki tonight and tell him everything. Ill say I just tricked you into doing this for me.”

Miharu looked up at Keisuke in surprise. “Youd do that?”

“Of course!”

Miharu launched herself into Keisukes arms. Keisuke laughed and said, “Youre such an open book, Miha-chan. Its so easy to read your emotions. Ill make things right with your precious Ryosuke.”

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Ryosuke pulled himself away from the window as the caring scene unfolded in front of him. He could hardly breathe, what with his heartbeat feeling like hed run a hundred miles and his gut wrenching painfully.

Shes your brothers girlfriend. You dont have time for a relationship. Shes your brothers girlfriend. You dont have time for a relationship. Shes your…

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

A/N: Next chapter will be set in the same timeline as this one. By the way, the school name is invented. Since Ryosuke attends Gunma University, I made the assumption that theres also a junior and senior high school. Lazy me. happy.gif
pnoytecknix
Posted: Mar 3 2007, 01:05 PM


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this is a great story, ive read all of it on ff.net. props, keep it up.
iluvryosuke
  Posted: Mar 5 2007, 08:19 AM


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thanks. great to see you here too. too bad i can't post the entire fic right away, apparently i can't post in the same topic twice in a row. @_@;;;

here's chapter three anyway. happy.gif

Disclaimer: I dont own Initial D. The original characters are mine.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

CHAPTER THREE

Keisuke knocked on the door to Ryosukes room. “Aniki, you there? Can I talk to you for a sec?”

Ryosuke looked at the door. Frankly, Keisuke was the last person he wanted to see or talk to right now. He knew it was irrational to take his frustration over Miharu out on his brother but he just couldnt seem to help himself. When Keisuke knocked again, he sighed in defeat. “Come in, Keisuke.”

Keisuke opened the door and he spotted his older brother with his back turned, typing away on his computer. Keisuke positioned himself on Ryosukes bed and waited for Ryosuke to acknowledge him.

“Wheres Miharu?”

Keisuke shrugged and said, “Her uncle asked her to baby-sit her cousin. She left an hour ago.”

Without turning away from his computer, Ryosuke asked coldly, “What did you want to talk to me about, Keisuke? I am, as you can see, pretty busy at the moment.”

Keisuke raised his eyebrow at Ryosukes tone but didnt comment on it. Instead he said, “Theres something you have to know about Miha-chan and me.”

Ryosukes hands halted over the keyboard. Before he could say anything, Keisuke rushed on. “Were not really going out.”

Finally, Ryosuke turned to look at Keisuke. “Say what?”

“Miha-chan and I are just friends. Were not really going out.”

Ryosuke crossed his arms over his chest. “Im listening.”

Keisuke explained everything from the meeting at the café to what happened that afternoon, carefully leaving out Miharus feelings for Ryosuke. When he finished, he said, “Dont get mad at her, OK? Shes got really sensitive feelings and she cares about what you think. It was all my idea and I just kinda forced her into the whole thing.”

Ryosukes response was slow in coming. Several emotions coursed through him: confusion, anger, but the most dominant was relief. And he couldnt believe just how pleased he was, almost to the point of glee. Keisuke looked at his brothers expression carefully. Ryosukes face remained the same but his eyes betrayed all the feelings he was trying to hide.

“You like her, dont you.”

Ryosuke looked sharply at Keisuke. “What are you talking about? Of course I like her. Shes our next door neighbor and your best friend.”

“You know what I mean, Aniki. I see the way you stare at her when you think no ones looking. And I saw the way you reacted when I kissed her this afternoon. I could almost feel you wanting to punch me.”

Ryosuke was silent. Keisuke thought that his brother wasnt going to answer him when Ryosuke spoke, “How can I not like her? Shes always been pretty but who would have thought shed grow to become a total knockout? And shes only twelve! That girl can drive a saint to sin.”

Keisuke grinned triumphantly. “You know, I had a feeling youd say something like that. I used to think you were immune to her charms.”

Ryosuke sighed. “I dont think anyones immune to her. Ive been hearing talk that even the guys from high school have been coming up to her even though shes only started junior high.”

Keisuke was so tempted to tell his brother that Miharu likes him too but he refrained from doing so. He just said, “Why dont you do something about it then? Ask her out.”

Ryosuke vehemently shook his head. “Thats just out of the question. Im attracted to her, yes. Hell, who wouldnt be? But Im not in love with her. Besides, I have too much on my hands right now. A relationship with her, or anyone else, isnt a luxury I can afford.”

“You sound just like her. Can we all say denial?” Keisuke muttered under his breath.

“What?”

“Oh, nothing. Anyway, thats all I wanted to say. And please dont tell mom and dad. Theyll freak,” pleaded Keisuke.

“I wont but how long are you planning to keep this up?”

“As long as it takes,” said Keisuke firmly.

Ryosuke was almost afraid to ask. “You like her too, dont you. Is this a plot to make her fall in love with you? If it is, Keisuke, I swear this is low even for you.”

Keisuke looked shocked for a moment then burst out laughing. “Of course I like her. In fact, I love her. Miha-chan is my best friend. Im not gonna lie to you and say that I dont like looking at her. Id have to be blind not to. Its just that Im so used to being her best friend that I cant see myself being anything else but that.”

Ryosuke looked skeptical so Keisuke added, “Besides, she already has someone she likes.”

“She does?” choked out Ryosuke.

“Yep. And shes liked him a long time now so even if I did like her I wouldnt stand a chance.”

Ryosuke felt his heart sink. “You know who it is then?”

“Of course I do. But Im not telling. Miha-chan will kill me,” said Keisuke slyly. Inside, he thought, Dear God, how can Aniki be so dense?

“Right. Well, if theres nothing else then I have to get back to work,” mumbled Ryosuke distractedly as he thought, She likes someone else? And shes liked him a long time? Who could it be? Dammit, and why do I want to know?

Keisuke stood up and headed for the door. Just as he was about to leave, Ryosuke asked, “By the way, what about that kiss and that hug you gave her this afternoon? Didnt she mind?”

“Oh, I always kiss and hug Miha-chan,” brightly said Keisuke.

Ryosuke paled. “Always?”

“Yep. Its one of the perks of being her best friend.”

“Even on her lips?” insisted Ryosuke.

Keisuke pretended to think about this before saying, “Come to think of it, Ive never kissed her on the lips. I should ask her if I can when she gets back.”

Ryosuke looked flabbergasted. Keisuke let out a small chuckle as he closed the door.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

“Bunta oji-san, Im here!” Miharu called out from the door of the tofu shop.

Bunta Fujiwara emerged from the back room of the shop carrying a wooden box filled with tofu. “Hi, Miharu-chan. I hope you didnt have any plans over the weekend. Im just so busy with the shop I cant see to Takumi myself.”

“Its not a problem oji-san. I love taking care of Taku-chan,” smiled Miharu.

“Hes in his room right now, just head on over there and make yourself at home.”
Miharu winked at her uncle. “I always do.”

Bunta watched as his niece walked away. Shes tall for a twelve year old. She might be able to reach the pedals already. I wonder if shed be interested…

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

“Miha-chan, what do we do next?” nine year old Takumi Fujiwara asked.

“Shouldnt you be getting ready for bed now? Its nine already,” Miharu said, glancing at her watch.

“That baka oyaji lets me stay up on weekends,” replied Takumi nonchalantly.

Miharu laughed. “You really shouldnt call your dad that way.”

Takumi merely snorted. Just then, there was a knock on the door of Takumis room.

“Miharu-chan, when Takumi asleep come downstairs for a while. I want to talk to you about something,” Bunta said through the door.

“OK, oji-san,” called out Miharu.

When Bunta left, Takumi nudged Miharu with his shoulder. “Sounds like youre in trouble,” he teased.

“And sounds like youre off to bed,” chuckled Miharu.

Takumi groaned. “But its too early! Im not even sleepy yet.”

“Why dont I help you with your homework?” suggested Miharu.

“Great. How exciting. Youre really determined to put me to bed, arent you,” grumbled Takumi.

Miharu only laughed.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Miharu looked inside the living room and saw her uncle reading a newspaper and smoking a cigarette. “You wanted to talk to me, oji-san?”

Bunta motioned for Miharu to sit down so she did, choosing a spot in front of him.
“Youre twelve now, right?”

“Yes.”

“How tall are you?”

Miharu wondered where this was going. “Last time I checked Im five feet tall.”

“Tell me, Miharu-chan. How much do you know about cars?”

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

A/N: Next chapter will be set in the same timeline but several months after this one.
pnoytecknix
Posted: Mar 6 2007, 12:57 PM


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i believe that the double posting rule does not apply to authors in fic threads...

anyways, hope the next update(on ff.net) is soon!

This post has been edited by pnoytecknix on Mar 6 2007, 12:57 PM
iluvryosuke
  Posted: Mar 11 2007, 12:29 AM


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I'm not really sure but I did try posting twice and a row but it didn't work. Ah well, here's chapter four anyway. By the way, I put up a new chapter in ff.net already. Thanks!

Disclaimer: I dont own Initial D. The original characters are mine.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

CHAPTER FOUR

Several months later

“Why are we here again? I know Aniki needs a dictionary but why did we have to come along?” muttered Keisuke as he followed behind Miharu.

“Because,” patiently explained Miharu, “I need to buy some books for research.”

Keisuke glanced at the titles of the books Miharu was holding. “Automotive Mechanics? How to Diagnose and Repair Automotive Electrical Systems? The Scientific Design of Exhaust and Intake Systems? Just what kind of research is this?”

Miharu merely grunted and seized another book from the shelf. Keisuke sighed and took the books Miharu was holding. She mumbled what Keisuke supposed was a “thank you” and pored over the book she just removed.

Ryosuke peered at each aisle, searching for Miharu and Keisuke. When he found them in the automotive section he approached them. “What are you looking for here?” he whispered to Keisuke.

“Ask her,” Keisuke whispered back. “Shes been buying books about cars like crazy. Says its for research.”

Ryosuke glanced at Miharus profile and he felt his heart skip a beat. Get a hold of yourself, he mentally berated himself.

Miharu tossed the book she was holding to Keisuke and grabbed another one.

Ryosuke cleared his throat. “Miharu, whats all this for?”

Miharu jumped at Ryosukes voice. “Oh, Ryosuke. I didnt notice you.”

Keisuke looked at Miharu and said incredulously, “You didnt notice him?”

Miharu glared at Keisuke, which only earned her a wink.

Ryosuke raised his eyebrow in question and gestured towards the books. Miharu laughed nervously. “Oh, these. Im just helping my uncle with some research.”

Ryosuke looked at Keisuke who only shrugged. Miharu pushed the two brothers to the cashier to save herself from any more questions.

Its tough enough having to hide the fact that Im learning how to drive without a license from Kei-chan. No telling what I might blurt out in front of Ryosuke, she thought.

When they were out of the bookstore, Ryosuke again turned to glance at Miharu who was struggling to carry all of the books she had purchased. Ryosuke sighed and said, “Give me those.”

Miharu blushed, “Its OK, I can carry them.”

Ryosuke stubbornly held out his hand. Miharu turned an even brighter shade of red and handed her books to Ryosuke. “Thanks, Ryosuke.”

“Whats with the sudden interest in cars? And dont tell me its for your uncle. Ive seen you reading automotive books in the library,” asked Ryosuke.

Miharus surprised gaze flew to Ryosukes face. “You have? I mean, its nothing. Ive been spending most of my time taking care of my cousin and my uncles really into cars. He kinda got me interested about them.”

“Ive taken an interest in cars myself. I want to try racing,” confided Ryosuke.

“Really?”

Keisuke fell back a little and watched the animated exchange between Miharu and his brother with amusement.

Denial. I still say its denial.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Keisuke settled himself on Miharus bed while she eagerly opened her books.

“So, what was that a while ago?” Keisuke asked offhandedly.

“What was what, Kei-chan?”

“Oh you know. You and Aniki. You guys hardly even noticed I was there.”

“We were just talking about cars, thats all.”

“Cars, huh.”

Miharu looked sternly at Keisuke. “Kei-chan, dont start.”

Keisuke laughed. “All right, all right. But anyway, what is up with those books? And youve been spending a lot of time with your uncle lately. Youre never here on weekends and sometimes you spend your weeknights there too.”

Miharu quickly thought of an excuse. “Well, my uncles really busy with his shop and all and my cousins only nine so I help out whenever I can. I love both of them to bits and Im really close to my cousin.”

“How come Ive never met this cousin of yours?”

“Hes never been to my house. My uncle doesnt like leaving Taku-chan in a place where an adult isnt close by. You know how it is with our parents.”

“Taku-chan, huh,” mumbled Keisuke. “Sounds cute.”

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

When Keisuke left, Miharu buried her nose in her books. An hour had flown by when she was distracted by the engine roar of her mothers car. She checked the time and said to herself, “Shes home early,”

Miharu went downstairs and saw her mother Junko entering the front door.
“Hi, mom. Whats up? Why are you home so early?”

Junko looked unsmilingly at her daughter. “I had a very interesting conversation with Bunta this morning, young lady.”

Miharu inwardly groaned. Oji-san had to open his big mouth.

Miharu opened her mouth to defend herself but was silenced when Junko held up her hand. “Before you say anything, I want to know exactly how long hes been teaching you and tell me everything you know so far.”

Miharu looked confused but answered as best as she could. She told her mom about the time she spent driving on Mt. Akina, how she can now perform most drifts, about the cars engine, and all the other things she learned over the past several months. Her mother remained silent, listening to her.

When she finished, Junko said, “Come with me.”

Miharu trudged behind Junko. Once they reached the garage, Miharu threw a quizzical glance at her mother.

Junko opened the passenger car door and said, “Get in.”

Miharu did as her mother asked, still unsure of what exactly was going on. Junko pulled out of the garage.

“Where are we going, mom?”

“Youll see soon enough.”

Miharu stared out the window as her mother drove. A few minutes later, she realized that they were headed for Mt. Akagi. Miharu grew both apprehensive and excited. Shed wanted to see it again ever since she learned how to drive.

As her mother drove up to the peak, Miharus eyes focused on the road. She tried to memorize the corners, the gutters, and every single detail she could absorb. Upon reaching the peak, Junko parked the car and turned off the engine. She turned to her daughter and asked, “Tell me what you noticed.”

“About what, mom?” Miharu inquired, not really sure what her mother wanted to know.

“Everything. The road, the scenery, how I drive. Just tell me what you observed. You were observing, right?”

Miharu nodded. “Well, I noted that the road is kind of narrower than Akina. The slopes and corners are gentler too.” As Miharu listed her observations, Junko listened intently.

After Miharu finished speaking, Junko asked, “How far are you from the guardrails when you hit the apex?”

“Oji-san told me to stay two inches away for now.”

Junko nodded, seemingly satisfied with everything her daughter told her. Miharu was still confused and decided it was high time she asked, “Mom, whats with all the questions?”

“Ill answer that when we reach the base. Right now, Ill show you something.”

Without so much as a warning, Junko performed a 180 degree turn and sped out of the parking lot. Junko didnt slow down even when they had reached the first corner. Miharus shocked gaze flew to her mothers face. Junkos expression was calm when she drifted from start to finish. At the base of the mountain, Junko again turned off the engine and turned to her daughter. “Now tell me what you noticed.”

Miharu wasted no time in telling her mother everything she noted. After she had told everything she could remember, Miharu looked at her mother in bewilderment. “Mom, where did you learn to drive like that?”

“I was the one who taught Bunta how to drive. Of course, I never really took it as seriously as he did so he quickly became better than me then he became the teacher and taught me how to drift. As you know, Im two years older than Bunta and we were both pretty competitive so we used to argue about who was the better driver. He was, of course, though I never admitted it. When I started going to medical school, I stopped driving but for Bunta, its a passion. He became so good that even professional drivers looked up to him. I found it odd that he never became a pro himself.”

“I never really understood why you didnt buy a Benz like dad did. I mean, lets face it. A Lancer Evolution III doesnt really suit a female dentist. Now I know. And here I thought you were going to be so mad at me!”

Junko grinned at her daughter. “I should be but it would be kind of hypocritical, wouldnt it?”

Miharu remained silent, uncertain. Junko started up the engine and headed back up the mountain. Miharu turned her puzzled gaze at her mother. When they were again at the peak of Akagi, Junko turned off the engine, opened the door and hopped out. Miharu followed. Junko tossed the car keys to Miharu and winked.

“Show me what you got.”

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Miharu stared up at the ceiling while lying down on her bed. She recalled what her mother told her when they got home.

“Miharu, you have a lot of potential but you need a lot of practice. Listen, when youre not over at Buntas I want you to take the Evo and drive down Akagi. But only do it at night and dont let your dad catch you,” Junko had warned.

Miharu felt a wide grin spread across her face. This was amazing! Now she can practice every night. Driving a 4WD had been exhilarating and totally different from her uncles 86.

I wish I could tell Kei-chan all about this. Hed totally freak!

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

A/N: I obviously dont know much about cars so Ive left the descriptions to a minimum. And I know the year models of the cars Im using dont fit with the timeline but if you think about it none of the cars in Initial D do anyway (i.e., Bunta and Ken Kogashiwa being rivals 20 years ago. Buntas AE86 and Kens SW20 dont come from the same year). Besides, this is a romance. happy.gif Next chapter will be set three years after this one.
Perry
Posted: Mar 12 2007, 12:38 PM


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Sorry, I made it so it's impossible to double post in the same thread within 72 hours. So in other words, you can post twice in a row in the same thread, but you have to wait 72 hours (3 days). =)

Of course, if people start responding right away, you may post right away. Hopefully the rule isn't too confusing.

Let's see some more chapters !
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pnoytecknix
Posted: Mar 12 2007, 01:09 PM


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^i get it, thats reasonable.

so post up nieshka...
iluvryosuke
  Posted: Mar 13 2007, 01:11 AM


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Thanks for the clarification, Perry-sama. happy.gif I'll keep that in mind.

If anyone's interested, all the latest chapters are posted on FF.net.

Here's chapter five. ^_~

Disclaimer: I dont own Initial D. The original characters are mine.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

CHAPTER FIVE

After three years

Fifteen year old Miharu sat under the shade of a tree on the grounds of Gunma Senior High School, reading her usual automotive related book. She checked her watch and noted with impatience that she had been sitting on the same spot for over an hour.

“Where the heck is Kei-chan?” muttered Miharu, irritated.

As if on cue, Keisuke burst out of the door and ran to where Miharu sat. “Sorry, Miha-chan.”

“What took you so long?” asked Miharu.

“I just took care of some things and time got away from me,” replied Keisuke vaguely.

Miharu looked dubiously at Keisuke. “Whatever. Come on, lets head on home.”

Miharu stood up to leave and brushed off some grass on her skirt. Just then, another figure rushed towards them.

“Miharu! Keisuke! Wait up!” Ryosuke called out.

Miharu felt her stomach knot and her face starting to go red. Keisuke nudged Miharu and whispered, “Get a grip, Miha-chan.”

“Try telling that to the butterflies on my stomach,” hissed back Miharu.

Ryosuke reached the spot where they were standing and paused to catch his breath.

“Whats wrong, Aniki?” asked Keisuke.

“Youve got to get me out of here. Theres no way I can study for the college entrance exam with all these girls bugging me,” panted out Ryosuke.

Miharu felt jealousy seeping through her veins but tried not to let it show as she said, “What about the library?”

Ryosuke stood up to full height and Miharu had to look up. He sure has gotten taller. And cuter. And more handsome. Ugh, snap out of it!

“I was at the library. I swear, theyre following me everywhere,” Ryosuke said, giving Miharu a momentary look. He took in all he could, from her waist long black hair to her enticing purple eyes. Did they have to make our uniforms so short? he thought distractedly.

Keisuke held back his laughter as he watched his brother and his best friend. Theyre driving me nuts, checking each other out like that and trying not to get caught. Its denial, I tell you. I really should do something to get these two together.

“Umm, guys, why dont the two of you go ahead? I have to stay for a while and, uhh, talk to a teacher. Yeah. So, take Miha-chan home for me, Aniki!”

Before the two could say a word, Keisuke hurried back inside the school building. Miharu sighed and thought, Im going to kill him when he gets home.

Ryosuke awkwardly shuffled his feet and said, “I guess we should get going.”

Miharu nodded and bent down to get her things. Ryosuke couldnt help looking at Miharu then and blushed. Oh, God Im such a pervert!

Ryosuke wordlessly took Miharus things and Miharu smiled. “Thanks, Ryosuke.”
Ryosuke coughed lightly. “Lets go.”

Miharu nodded and fell into step beside Ryosuke. The two didnt exchange a word and Miharu was beginning to feel uncomfortable. I should say something. Here I am, walking with the guy Ive been crushing on for eight years now and I cant think of a single word to say! How pathetic is that?

So Miharu said the first thing that popped into her mind. “I heard from Kei-chan that youre getting your drivers license.”

Ryosuke seemed startled when Miharu spoke. “Yeah, I am.”

“Youre lucky. I wont get mine for three more years.”

Ryosuke chuckled. “Well, technically you have to be 18 to get one but since Ill be 18 in a few months, dad pulled some strings.”

“Kei-chan says youre also getting a new car. Have you decided what youre getting yet?”

“A Mazda RX-7.”

Miharu was impressed. “The FC? Its a tough car to master.”

“I know. Its why I want it.”

“Still thinking about racing?”

“Yeah, its the only thing on my mind these days.”

“Ill be expecting a ride,” teased Miharu.

“Sure, but if you start wearing crash helmets like Keisuke keeps telling me to I swear Ill leave you by the side of the road.”

Miharu laughed and the sound made Ryosukes heart rate increase. On impulse, Ryosuke said, “You want to have a snack with me? Maybe coffee?”

Miharu turned her surprised but delighted face towards Ryosuke. “Id love to.”

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Miharu went inside her room and sighed dreamily.

“Took you long enough,” a voice grumbled from her bed.

Miharu jumped at the sound and glowered at Keisuke. “Dont scare me like that! Sheesh, what are you doing here anyway?”

Keisuke sat up. “Waiting for you, obviously. So, did you have fun on your date?”

Keisuke wiggled his eyebrows and Miharu blushed. “It wasnt a date,” she countered. “Ryosuke and I were just chatting, thats all.”

“Right. So the see you again tomorrow after school I heard from Aniki is just for more chatting, I suppose,” Keisuke said sarcastically.

Miharu gave Keisuke an accusatory glare, “You were spying!”

Keisuke rolled his eyes. “Oh, please. Your window is right above the front door. I could hear everything without even trying.”

Miharu groaned and flopped down next to Keisuke. Keisuke automatically put his arm around her as she leaned her head on his shoulder. “Oh, Kei-chan, hes so wonderful! Who knew he could be so nice and charming and incredibly smart and hes so handsome to boot!”

Keisuke laughed. “And youre not in love with him, right?”

“Youre not helping,” Miharu said miserably.

“Look, just tell him how you feel already. The two of you are driving me insane pretending you dont like each other.”

Miharus forehead furrowed in confusion. “What are you saying?”

“Aniki likes you too, you dolt.”

Miharu pulled away from Keisuke and looked deep into his eyes. “Define like.”

Keisuke threw his hands up in exasperation. “Like as in he likes staring at you when youre not looking. Like as in he wants to do me bodily harm whenever I give you a hug or kiss you. Like as in he gets jealous whenever other guys look at you.”

Miharu shook her head, trying to suppress the glimmer of hope inside her heart. “You must be mistaken. Theres no way he thinks of me like that.”

“Argh, fine. Have it your way. But fact is fact and thats what I see.”

Miharu thought about this. Maybe I should just tell Ryosuke. But what if Kei-chans wrong? Ugh, its all so confusing!

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Ryosuke stared at his reflection on the bathroom mirror. He turned on the faucet and splashed some cold water on his face.

I know I have to study and I know I have a lot of things to do but one look at Miharus face and my mind goes blank.

Ryosuke shook his head, trying to clear his thoughts.

What made me ask Miharu out today? And what made me ask to see her again tomorrow? Dammit, I see her practically everyday, why isnt that enough?

“Youre crazy, Ryosuke Takahashi! You dont have time for all this sentimental crap!” his mind screamed at him.

“And why not?” his heart shouted back. “Whats so bad about getting to know Miharu a little better?”

“It isnt practical and it isnt logical. You have goals to accomplish and too short a time to get them all done. If you get any more involved with her all your planning will be for nothing!” his mind retorted.

Ryosuke groaned out loud. Im going bonkers. I must be. But standing beside her, seeing her smiling at me, I just couldnt help myself. And who wouldve thought that shes intelligent and gentle aside from being totally good-looking? For the eight years Ive known her this is really the first time weve actually sat down and talked. And its so incredible! Shes incredible.

Ryosuke took a deep, calming breath. He looked at his reflection firmly and said, “Dont do anything stupid, Ryosuke. Just get to know her, be her friend. There cant be anything wrong with that. Just dont do anything stupid.”

Ryosuke nodded to himself and headed back to his computer.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

The next few weeks were a small slice of heaven for Miharu. She and Ryosuke went out for coffee almost everyday and when they didnt go out they hung out in Keisukes bedroom. As each day passed, Miharu felt herself falling deeper and deeper for Ryosuke. She was falling so fast it scared her.

One day when Keisuke and Miharu were alone in her room, she told Keisuke what she was feeling. Keisuke listened patiently, which was a rare thing for him since he was such a hothead.

“What do you want to do?” asked Keisuke quietly.

Miharu moaned, “I dunno. I was hoping youd tell me.”

Keisuke shook his head. “Miha-chan, you already know what Ill tell you. Id ask you to just tell Aniki. But I want to know what you want to do.”

“I want to tell him, Kei-chan, but I couldnt bear it if he turns me down. And Im so afraid of losing what we have right now. His friendship is just as important to me and declaring my feelings for him might jeopardize that. I could lose everything. And Id just die if I do.”

And she probably would. Keisuke knew that. Miharus biggest flaw is her overly sensitive feelings. A rejection from his brother would crush her. But he knew that Miharu cant go on like this for much longer either.

“Miha-chan, youll have to choose someday. You cant keep all of this bottled up inside you forever. Even guys from school are asking me whats up with you and Aniki.”

This surprised Miharu. “I havent heard anything. What have they been saying?”

Keisuke shrugged. “Theyre asking why the two of you are spending so much time together since youre supposed to be my girlfriend and all that.”

Miharu grew slightly angry at this. “Dont they have anything better to do than gossip?”

Keisuke sighed, “What theyre saying isnt really important, Miha-chan. Its what theyve noticed that is. Anikis pretty dense when it comes to these matters but pretty soon hell start noticing it too. Youre not exactly the best liar in the world and youre practically an open book.”

Miharu remained mute, knowing Keisuke was right.

“Take your time and think about it, Miha-chan. But dont take too much time. You know I cant stand it when somethings troubling you.”

Miharu had to smile. “Aww, youre just a big sweetheart, arent you Kei-chan?”

Keisuke growled, “I try to be serious and this is what I get?”

Miharu giggled and pinched Keisukes cheeks. “Whos a good boy? Whos a cute boy?”

Keisuke couldnt help but laugh then. “Youre cuckoo, you know that?”

“Seriously though. Thanks, Kei-chan. Id be lost without you.”

“Thats why Im here. Anyway, Id better get home. You think about what I said and dont do anything without telling me first, you got it?”

Keisuke gave Miharu a tight hug and kissed her cheek then let himself out.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Ryosuke was pretty much in a similar state as Miharu was. His thoughts were occupied with Miharus smiling face, her melodious voice, her laugh, everything about her. He always found himself staring at the clock, wishing the school bell would ring and hed be with her again.

He had noticed that his classmates were whispering about his growing closeness to his younger brothers supposed girlfriend. But he didnt care. Let them think what they want, he thought.

And it was this direction of his thoughts that frightened him. Hadnt he said to himself that he would only get to know Miharu as a friend? Hadnt he warned himself not to get too close? Hadnt he drilled into his head not to do anything stupid?

Maybe I should ask her out for real. Maybe she likes me too. Wait, didnt Keisuke tell me she already has someone she likes? And that shes liked him for a long time now? I dont stand a chance! Ugh, why am I even considering this?! You cant! What about your goals? What about racing? You dont have time for this!

Ryosuke wanted to pull his hair out from frustration. All his smarts, all his plans, all his logic, down the drain because of one girl. He inhaled and held his breath, hoping it would calm him. When he exhaled, he thought, OK. Lets stop and think for a second. I cant stop thinking about her. I look forward to seeing her. I enjoy talking to her. I never get tired of looking at her face. Hearing her laugh makes me want to laugh too. The thought of seeing her with another guy sends my blood boiling. If Im going to be a doctor, I should be able to diagnose whats wrong based on these symptoms.

The truth suddenly hit him like a ton of bricks, almost knocking him from his chair. Oh, God, no.

He was falling in love.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

A/N: Next chapter set on the same timeline.
iluvryosuke
  Posted: Mar 18 2007, 12:18 AM


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Disclaimer: I dont own Initial D. The original characters are mine.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

CHAPTER SIX

“So tell me again why you cant tell this Ryosuke that you like him,” twelve year old Takumi Fujiwara asked his cousin.

Miharu sighed, “Because, Taku-chan, its complicated. Ive liked him forever but we only started talking, I mean really talking, about a month ago. And now that were finally becoming closer friends, I dont want to risk losing that for something that may very well be impossible to have.”

“Tell me again why its impossible.”

Miharu folded her arms across her chest and looked crossly at her cousin. “Have you even been listening to a word Im saying?”

Takumi rolled his eyes and said, “Well, duh. The point Im trying to make is why is it so impossible for this guy to like you too? From what youve told me he hardly talks to anyone, especially girls, and in fact avoids them like the plague.”

“Thats because theyre his fangirls and he hates being chased around like that,” interrupted Miharu.

“Right. And then he goes and asks you to coffee almost everyday and hangs out with you and your best friend, who happens to be his brother. And said best friend and brother keeps telling you that you have a chance with him. Now tell me again what the problem is.”

“Well if you put it that way it all becomes so simple but it really isnt that simple.”

“Yes, it is,” insisted Takumi. “Look, either way youre going to have to face him. Just ask yourself if you can remain as just a friend to him or if you want something more. Besides, Miha-chan, I hate seeing you like this. Its not like you to be all bent out of shape over anything.”

Miharu smiled at Takumi. “You know, you sound just like Kei-chan.”

“And Kei-chan would be the best friend and brother, right?”

Miharu laughed. “You should meet him sometime.”

Takumi snorted, “Based on what youve told me, I dont think Id have anything in common with a pretty boy like that.”

Miharus response was to laugh harder.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Miharu yawned loudly as her uncle loaded boxes of tofu on the back of the AE86. Bunta looked at his niece worriedly and said, “Are you sure you can handle the delivery, Miharu-chan? You were up pretty late with Takumi last night.”

Miharu waved her hands dismissively and said, “This is nothing, oji-san. You dont have to worry.”

“Well if youre sure then here you go.” Bunta handed Miharu a paper cup filled with water.

Miharu peered inside the cup. “There seems to be more than usual, oji-san.”

“All part of your training, Miharu-chan. Hows your driving on Akagi?”

“Pretty good. I know the mountain as much as I know Akina.”

Bunta nodded. “You better get moving. And remember not to spill a single drop. Id know.”

“Yep, you can count on me.”

Bunta watched as Miharu drove off. I hope Takumi will have the same enthusiasm about driving as she does. Her rate of improvement is astounding. She doesnt even ask me questions as much as she used to and she can probably tune my car on her own. I dont have much left to teach her.

Bunta smiled to himself and went back inside the shop.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

“Ive decided to tell him,” Miharu said all of a sudden.

Keisuke looked up from the math problem Miharu was tutoring him on and gazed directly into Miharus eyes. They were in his room and Keisuke had asked for Miharus help with his homework.

“Him being Aniki, right?” Keisuke said slowly.

Miharu nodded, her expression like that of a cornered rabbit.

“May I ask how you came to this decision?” inquired Keisuke, leaning back but not breaking eye contact.

“Well, I was talking to Taku-chan a week ago, you know, my cousin, and Ive been thinking about what he said. And he made some interesting points, which is really hard to believe since hes only twelve and I cant remember being that insightful about love matters when we were twelve,” babbled Miharu.

Keisuke chuckled in amusement at Miharus flustered face. “And what did Taku-chan tell you?”

“Well,” hedged Miharu, “he said that things arent really as complicated as I made them out to be.”

“In what way?”

“Basically he asked me if I could live the rest of my life as just a friend to Ryosuke. And I realized I couldnt. I have to know if there can be something more between us.”

“Thats all good but I have to know this: what if Aniki says no? Im not saying he will but I want to assure myself that youll be prepared for the worst. I know how sensitive your feelings are, Miha-chan.”

Miharu rolled her eyes impatiently. “Look, do you want me to do this or not? May I remind you whos been bugging me for the past several years to go and confess?”

Keisuke sighed, “I just want to make sure that this is really what you want to do and that youre not doing it just because youre pressured by me or your cousin.”

Miharu averted her eyes from Keisukes. “I think Im finally ready, Kei-chan. Besides, I feel like Im lying to Ryosuke by hiding what I really want. Good or bad, favorable or not, I have to tell him.”

“Just dont rush into it, Miha-chan. I dont want you to do anything rash.”

“Ive been waiting eight years. I think I can handle it,” she said, standing up. At least I hope so.

Keisuke stared at Miharu with a dazed look on his face. “What, you mean now?” Youre telling him now?”

“If I dont do it now, Ill lose my nerve.”

Keisuke frantically stood up, almost toppling his chair in the process. “Wait, are you really sure? Jeez, youre getting me all worked up!”

Miharu chuckled, “Hey, Im the one doing the professing of love, not you. Calm down.”

Keisuke ran his hand through his hair and mumbled, “Calm down, she says.”

“Look, Ill just go over there to his room and tell him then Ill come back here. Piece of cake,” Miharu said as confidently as she could, wishing she really felt that way.

Before Keisuke could say anything more, Miharu opened the door to his room and stepped out.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Ryosuke reread the same paragraph on his textbook for what must be the hundredth time before he groaned and slammed the book shut. He just couldnt concentrate. Hed been avoiding Miharu for almost a week now, ever since that day when he realized he was getting in way over his head.

Shes still on my mind. Im itching to see her. I miss her terribly. With these symptoms, Id say Im suffering from Miharu withdrawal syndrome, he thought absently.

A knock on his door jarred him from his thoughts. Assuming it was Keisuke, he said, “Come in.”

Surprise was evident on his face when Miharu walked inside. Misinterpreting his expression, Miharu blushed and said, “I hope Im not disturbing you, Ryosuke.”

Ryosuke shook his head, at the same time scrambling to get his composure back. “I was just taking a break from studying.”

“Do you mind if I talk to you for a second? I promise it wont take too long,” said Miharu uncertainly.

“Of course. Is there something wrong?” asked Ryosuke. He motioned for Miharu to sit on the bed and she did so hesitantly.

“Depends on whos asking,” muttered Miharu.

Ryosuke knit his brows together. “Whats that supposed to mean?”

Miharu blushed again and twiddled her thumbs. Ryosuke waited patiently, watching her try to get her thoughts together. He was also enjoying the view, but he wasnt about to admit that.

Finally Miharu spoke, “Ryosuke, I know this is going to sound really crazy and I hope you dont hate me after this and I wish you wont take this the wrong way – wait, what am I saying, of course youre going to take this the wrong way but youll have to allow me to explain…Im not making much sense, am I?”

Ryosukes face reflected confusion and a bit of apprehension. He nodded slightly and said, “Just tell me whats the matter.”

“Im in love with you!” Miharu blurted out.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

A/N: Hmm, I kind of fudged my way through this chapter. And its pretty short, too. Next chapter will be the last of my “flashbacks”.
pnoytecknix
Posted: Mar 18 2007, 10:15 AM


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your last update on ff.net was pretty hectic. the story is heating up. good job!
iluvryosuke
  Posted: Mar 21 2007, 03:47 AM


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LOL, thanks! I think by the time I get the next chapter up my posts here will have caught up. So busy with school!

Disclaimer: I dont own Initial D. The original characters are mine.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

CHAPTER SEVEN

“Im in love with you!” Miharu blurted out.

Ryosuke froze. Did she just say what I thought she said?

Miharu continued, unable to stop herself from getting the words out now that she had started, “Ive liked you since I was seven. Yes, that would be the first time I saw you. I really thought Id grow out of it, since I was going through the fairy tale prince stage at the time and we both know youre so incredibly handsome, but I didnt grow out of it. In fact, the more I saw you, the more I liked you and not even Kei-chans constant teasing got me to stop liking you. And lately weve gotten to talk more and part of me was thinking that maybe Id stop crushing on you if you became a close friend but it just had the opposite effect and I ended up falling in love with you.”

Ryosuke was having trouble keeping up because he was still in a state of mild shock. “You think Im handsome?”

Miharu laughed nervously, “Well, yeah.”

When Ryosukes brain finally understood all that she had said, he asked, “Let me get this straight. The guy youve liked for a really long time was me?”

Miharus startled gaze flew to Ryosuke. “Wait, how did you know about that?”
“Keisuke mentioned something to me but that was years ago.”

“I swear your brother talks too much,” grumbled Miharu.

Ryosuke shook his head, unable to accept what he had heard. “But Miharu, why me?”

Miharu smiled. “And why not you? Youre intelligent, handsome, and youre really nice. Ill admit that you dont show that nice side of yours to people very often but these past few weeks have made a difference, to me at least. I feel like Ive gotten to know a different side of you, you know?”

When Ryosuke didnt respond, Miharu asked, “I just have to know, Ryosuke. Could you possibly see me as more than just your brothers best friend? Could you maybe like me too?”

Ryosuke was at a loss. His heart was doing cartwheels but his mind was rebelling against everything.

“Keisuke said you did,” her voice interrupted his thoughts yet again.

“He said what?” he asked, dreading her words. Just what else has Keisuke been telling Miharu?

“He said that you like me too,” said Miharu, while again twiddling her thumbs.

Ryosuke inwardly groaned. He recalled something his brother had said to him before.

“Dont get mad at her, OK? Shes got really sensitive feelings and she cares about what you think.”

Ryosuke knew he was in a pinch. His heart chanted, “Go for it, Ryosuke! You know you want to. Isnt this great news? Shes in love with you!”

On the other hand, his mind was giving him a different command. “Dont do it, Ryosuke! Love is nothing more than a distraction, a weakness. If you do this, everything youve worked to accomplish will come crashing down on you.”

So what was he to do? Ryosuke opened his mouth, hoping that whatever came out of it wasnt something that would hurt Miharu. After all, he was letting his mind take over. Miharu smiled and looked at him expectantly.

“Of course I like you, Miharu. Ive known you since we were kids and youve been a really good friend to Keisuke. And lately, youve become a really good friend to me too.”

Miharu kept her smile in place but her heart began to sink. “Here comes the but.”

“But,” stressed Ryosuke, “thats all I think of you as, Miharu. Im really sorry and I really didnt want to hurt your feelings but I just cant give you what youre asking for.”

Ryosukes heart wailed, “What? This is your chance! Dont blow it!”

Tears started brimming in Miharus eyes and she looked away. She laughed, trying to cover her distress and embarrassment. “Bah. I knew it. You probably think Im just as bad as your fangirls.”

Ryosuke stood up and sat beside Miharu on his bed. He grabbed her by the shoulders and shook her lightly. “Thats not true,” he said vehemently. “Youre smart, beautiful and kind. Youre nothing like they are.”

When the tears started falling on Miharus cheeks, Ryosuke felt his heart shatter. What have I done?

Miharu turned her eyes and stared straight into Ryosukes. He shifted uncomfortably, feeling as if Miharu can see right through him, and he almost wished she could. Suddenly, Miharu said in a clear voice, “Kiss me, Ryosuke.”
Ryosuke was stunned. “What?”

“Ive already made a fool of myself so whats the harm in doing it again? Kiss me. If youre going to reject me at least give me something to hold on to. Be my first kiss,” Miharu said calmly.

This was crazy. Hed never kissed a girl before. Ryosukes heart slammed excruciatingly across his chest. What should he do?

“Please,” whispered Miharu painfully.

Ryosuke didnt know if it was the pain he heard in her voice, or the smell of her rose scented perfume, or the fact that she just looked so darn beautiful. He gently took her face into his hands and slowly closed the gap between their lips. Miharus eyes fluttered closed.

The first touch of their lips sent jolts of electricity through Ryosukes body. He felt Miharu tremble slightly and her hands tentatively slide up his chest. That was probably what set him off. He let out a groan, and common sense flew out the window. His body took over from there. His arms went around her; one of his hands cupped the back of her neck, locking her in place, while the other tangled itself in her hair. She let out a soft moan and Ryosuke used this opportunity to slide his tongue into her mouth.

He kissed her like there was no tomorrow. And there really wasnt, he realized belatedly. He would never have this chance again, so he took what he could, relishing it, committing it to memory. When oxygen became a necessity, he reluctantly pulled away and looked at her face.

Miharus eyes remained closed. Unshed tears lingered at the corners of her eyes and he lightly brushed it away with his thumb. She turned her face to his touch and Ryosuke ached to kiss her again.

“Promise me something, Ryosuke.”

Ryosuke cleared his throat and gruffly replied, “If I can.”

“Promise me youll become a terrific racer and that youll race against me someday.”

Ryosuke saw no harm in that, although he was slightly puzzled by the request. “All right, I promise.”

Miharu smiled sadly and stood up. Ryosuke did so as well. “Well, thats all I wanted to say. Im sorry if I took too much of your time. Goodbye, Ryosuke.”

Goodbye? Ryosuke had never felt this helpless before. He wanted to ease her pain, bring back her laughter, but he was powerless and his mind was unwilling.

“Its not too late,” his heart said in a panicky voice. “Take it all back!”

“Miharu…” he said hesitantly.

She didnt let him say anything more. She ran to the door and closed it behind her.

“Its for the best,” his mind said knowingly.

Shut up, both of you! growled Ryosuke inwardly.

He opened the door and followed after her.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Keisuke stood edgily on the hallway, leaning on the wall beside the door to his room. He was anxiously waiting for Miharu to come out of her brothers room.

The moment he laid eyes on her as she closed the door to Ryosukes room with her shoulders slumped, he knew everything had gone wrong.

“Oh, Miha-chan…” sighed Keisuke.

Miharu sensed Keisukes presence and she ran to him. She threw her arms around his waist and burrowed her face in his shirt. He immediately pulled her close.

Miharu said simply and in a faintly muffled tone, “He didnt want me, Kei-chan.”

At the corner of his eye, he saw Ryosuke step outside of his bedroom. Ryosuke opened his mouth to call Miharu and started to move closer but Keisuke shook his head slightly. Ryosuke stilled.

“Im sorry, Miha-chan. Come on, lets get you home,” Keisuke said softly while stroking her hair soothingly.

Miharu nodded her consent. She hadnt noticed Ryosuke watching them.

“I think I screwed up, Kei-chan. Im sorry.” Then she promptly burst into tears.

Keisuke gave his brother a sad, almost disappointed, look then turned away, leading Miharu down the stairs.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

That evening, Takumi went inside his room after soccer practice and was surprised to see Miharu sitting on his bed. Takumi took one look at his cousins forlorn face and said, “Didnt go so well, huh?”

Miharu forced a smile on her face. “Am I that obvious?”

Takumi went over to her and gave her a hug. “He probably doesnt deserve you anyway.”

“You say the nicest things, Taku-chan.”

“So what are you gonna do now?” asked Takumi.

Miharu cast a wry glance at her cousin. “I hope you dont mind having me for a roommate.”

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Shes either sick or shes avoiding me, declared Ryosuke to himself.

This thought was almost immediately followed by, Well, duh, you think?!

Ryosuke felt ill at ease. He hadnt seen Miharu at all since that day a week ago and his brother hadnt spoken to him at all. He couldnt blame them, though. Even he wanted to get away from himself.

Not knowing, however, was driving him to distraction. He wanted to know how Miharu was. He wanted to know if Keisuke was mad at him. He decided to at least try to make things right with Keisuke.

Ryosuke knocked on Keisukes door and hoped to God his brother would let him in. He didnt have to pray very long when he heard Keisuke say, “Come in, Aniki.”

Relieved, Ryosuke opened the door and saw Keisuke sitting on his desk with his back turned. “Keisuke, we need to talk.”

“If its about Miha-chan, theres nothing to talk about,” responded Keisuke casually.
“Yes, there is. Keisuke, I know youre mad at me and I want to apologize.”

Keisuke sighed and turned to look at Ryosuke. “Im not mad at you, Aniki. I think youre stupid for turning her down but Im sure you have your reasons.”

“Hows Miharu doing?” asked Ryosuke quietly.

Keisuke ran his hands through his hair in frustration. “I wish I knew. I havent seen her since I took her home last week.”

“What?” exclaimed Ryosuke.

“She hasnt come to school at all. I went to her house several times but her mom just told me she was at her uncles place. I asked for the address but she said that Miha-chan didnt want me to know where it is. I even told her mom that I had Miha-chans homework with me but she just took it from me and said shed give it to her. Ive been worried sick and Ive been practically living beside the phone waiting to hear from her.”

“Im sorry. This is all my fault. I wish there was something I could do,” said Ryosuke remorsefully.

Keisuke smiled. “There is, but I already know youll say no.”

Ryosuke got the hint. He smiled apologetically and said, “Let me know if theres anything else I can do.”

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

A/N: My bad. I said that this will be the last of my “flashbacks” but my next one is still set in the same timeline. Gomen, gomen. And about Takumis soccer practice, I remember he was kicked out of the team when he punched Miki because of a comment he made about Natsuki. I just incorporated the soccer thing on a spur of the moment so tell me if I made a mistake about it. happy.gif
iluvryosuke
  Posted: Mar 25 2007, 08:18 AM


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Disclaimer: I dont own Initial D. The original characters are mine.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

CHAPTER EIGHT

“Are you sure you want to do the delivery tonight, Miharu-chan? You look dead tired,” asked Bunta.

Miharu let out a loud yawn and sleepily replied, “I can handle it, oji-san.”

“I know somethings wrong. Youve been here a week, you havent been going to school and I can tell you hardly sleep at night. I dont understand why Junko doesnt just pick you up and take you home.”

“Moms been busy making the arrangements.”

“Arrangements? Arrangements for what?”

“Im moving back to New York, oji-san.”

“What? Junko never mentioned that your family was moving back there,” said Bunta.

“Thats because its just going to be me, oji-san.”

“Whats this all about, Miharu-chan? Why are you moving? Its all so sudden.”

Miharu avoided her uncles gaze and stepped into the drivers seat of the 86. “I received an invitation to attend a boarding school in New York. Its a wonderful opportunity and itll offer me a straight shot to Harvard.”

Bunta scrutinized his nieces expression. “I hope youve talked to Takumi about whatevers bothering you.”

Miharu had to laugh at her uncles perceptiveness. “Theres just no fooling you, is there. Taku-chans been a great help to me and Im really going to miss him when I leave. You too, of course.”

Bunta smiled at his niece. “Me too. Whos going to do the delivery when youre gone?”

“Theres always Taku-chan. Hes almost thirteen now. I think its about time he started driving, dont you agree?” winked Miharu.

Bunta grinned. “Theres that. You better get going then.”

Bunta handed Miharu the customary paper cup then she roared away.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Two weeks. Ryosuke couldnt believe that two miserable weeks have passed since he refused the love of the only girl who turned his mind to mush.

Ryosuke didnt know it was possible to feel this utterly wretched. The whole scene with Miharu just kept playing over and over in his head. It was driving him crazy. He was a jumble of thoughts and emotions and it all centered on Miharus crying face.

He regretted his actions, for the most part. He was still uncertain that he made the right choice in dumping Miharu and choosing his straight, mapped out life, but he was always quick to assure himself that it was all for the best.

Miharu deserves someone who can devote himself to her. Someone who can love her the way she ought to be loved. And he didnt think he would be able to provide that.

“Who are you to be the judge of that?” grumbled his heart.

Ryosuke paid no attention to his heart. He seemed to be doing that a lot lately, so much so that it hardly spoke to him anymore. But when it did, it always made him ache.

Mostly it was the guilt that was eating at him. Keisuke moped around the house, worried that Miharu had gone and done something stupid. He acted like hed lost his best friend, and Ryosuke began to think that maybe he had.

And to cause Miharu, or anyone else, that much pain? He couldnt live with himself. Yeah, maybe he was placing too much importance to himself but he really couldnt get rid of the nagging feeling that everything was his fault.

“Thats because, oh I dont know, it is!” his heart said sarcastically.

Ryosuke promptly told it to shut up.

When the phone rang, both brothers jumped. Keisuke rushed to answer it, hoping that it was finally Miharu.

“Hello?” Keisuke breathlessly said through the receiver.

“Kei-chan? Im so glad its you.”

“Miha-chan!” exclaimed Keisuke. Ryosuke breathed a sigh of relief. “I was worried sick! Where are you? Howve you been? Why havent you been going to school?”

Miharu let out a small chuckle. “Im fine, Kei-chan. Ive been staying with my cousin. Cant say hes too happy about it though since Ive taken over his room.”

“Come on home, Miha-chan,” pressed Keisuke.

There was a pause on the line. “Is Ryosuke there, Kei-chan?”

Keisuke cast a quick glance at Ryosuke who was sitting beside him. Afraid that Miharu will hang up if he told the truth, he said, “No, hes not here right now. Some after school activity, I think.”

“Oh, Kei-chan. Im so sorry about everything. I know I said I could handle it if things didnt go well. I know I said I was ready. Apparently my brain and the rest of me are at odds.”

“Forget about it, Miha-chan. Just come home. We can talk about it when you get here.”

“Thing is, Kei-chan,” Miharu said timidly, “I wont be coming home anytime soon.”

Keisuke was suddenly filled with dread. “What are you talking about?”

“Listen, I cant stay on the phone long because I have to leave soon. Do something for me, will you? I left a package with mom for you over at my house. Go pick it up, OK?”

“Wait, youre leaving? For where? And what package? What the hells going on, Miha-chan? Youre not making any sense,” Keisuke said angrily.

“Just get the package and everything will be clear then. Im sorry Kei-chan, I really have to go. I love you. Tell Ryosuke I love him too,” Miharu said before she hung up.

Keisuke stared at the receiver until the busy tone jarred him from his thoughts. He slammed the phone down and stormed out of the house. Ryosuke, curious as he was, followed after his brother.

Ryosuke caught up with Keisuke just in time to see him bang loudly on the Watanabes front door. They heard footsteps inside and then the door opened.
Junko smiled when she saw them. “Ah, Keisuke, Ryosuke. I suppose youre here for the package, right?”

“Whats going on? Wheres Miha-chan?” snapped Keisuke.

“Mind your manners, Keisuke. Sorry about that Watanabe-san,” said Ryosuke apologetically.

Junko shook her head. “Its quite all right, Ryosuke.” Junko turned to Keisuke and said, “Keisuke, Miharu-chan didnt want me to say anything and she insisted that shed handle everything. She just wanted me to make sure that you open the package.”

Keisuke grudgingly nodded. The two waited while Junko retrieved the package. Keisuke muttered in an irritated voice, “I swear one of these days Miha-chans going to drive me to the loony bin.”

Ryosuke silently agreed, but for all too different reasons. Junko came back and handed a box to Keisuke. “Make sure you open it right away.”

“Thanks, Watanabe-san,” Ryosuke said politely.

Junko waved then closed the door. Keisuke was tearing at the gift wrapper viciously. Inside the gift was a cellular phone box.

“A cellphone? Argh, this is getting annoying!” snarled Keisuke.

The two of them walked back to their house and when they reached Keisukes room, they settled themselves on the bed. The cellphone box sat between them and they both stared at it.

“OK. I dont know what game Miha-chans playing but Ill bite. Shed better have a damn good explanation for this,” said Keisuke.

Keisuke opened the box started to take out the contents when a note fell out. Ryosuke picked it up.

“What does it say, Aniki?”

Ryosuke shrugged and read, “The phones fully charged and fully functional. All you need to do is turn it on.”

Keisuke mumbled incoherently but obediently turned on the phone. A few moments later the phone started flashing, alerting Keisuke that he had two voice messages.

Keisuke immediately retrieved the messages. Miharus voice filled his ears.
“Kei-chan, Im really sorry for being such a coward and not saying goodbye to you face to face. By the time you get this, Ill be on a plane headed for New York. I know you said for me not to do anything stupid but I dont think you can say that this is. Im going to a boarding school. Its a really good one and it could be my ticket to Harvard. Knowing you, however, youd just say Im running away and youre probably right. I just cant face Ryosuke right now, and most likely not for a long time. I dont think I can bear to see him and not want to… Oh, you get the point. I want you to keep this phone, and Ill call you as soon as the plane lands. I saved my number in the phones contact list. I love you, Kei-chan. The second message is for Ryosuke.”

Keisuke slowly removed the phone from his ear, unable to believe what he had just heard. Ryosuke looked at him agitatedly then flinched when Keisuke suddenly started screaming at the phone.

“Miha-chan, you lousy idiot! How dare you do this without telling me? Me! You are the most obnoxious, stubborn and melodramatic girl I have ever met!”

Keisuke panted after his outburst then thrust the phone towards his brother. “The other ones for you. Im taking a walk.”

Ryosuke took the cellphone from his brothers hand and as soon as he did, Keisuke stomped out. Ryosuke heard the front door slam shut and he sighed heavily. He looked at the blinking phone and slowly retrieved the last message.

“Ryosuke,” said Miharu, “There really isnt much left to say. I think we covered all that needed to be said the last time we talked. You neednt worry about what youre going to do or say the next time we meet because we wont, at least not for a long time. Take care of Kei-chan for me, would you?”

So she left. That much Ryosuke understood. He wanted to scream at her, tell her how unreasonable she was being, hug her and kiss her all at the same time.

But he couldnt, could he. She was gone and Ryosukes the reason why. He felt like he had to be the vilest creature on the planet right now.

Although, if one thinks about it, this is what he wanted, wasnt it? Hed rejected her love so he could be free from distractions, free to pursue his dreams, free to achieve his goals. He should be grateful that Miharu went to wherever it is shes gone to. And good riddance too.

His heart yelled, kicked and punched, struggling to knock some sense into him but he ignored it. He steadily built an icy wall around the offending organ. No longer would he listen to it. No longer will these strange emotions surface again.

Hed gotten what he wanted, and by God, he was going to show everyone he did the right thing.

He snapped the phone shut, calmly set it down on Keisukes bed, then left.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

A/N: And thus, Ryosuke Takahashi, the cold, calculating and analytical racer we all know and adore, was born. Im trying to decide if I should start writing the main plot or if I should make an interlude first (I was thinking somewhere along the lines of small snapshots of how the characters did in the six years they were apart). Let me know what you think.
iluvryosuke
  Posted: Mar 30 2007, 08:15 PM


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Disclaimer: I dont own Initial D. The original characters are mine.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

INTERLUDE

Bunta

I was immensely disappointed when Miharu decided to leave. She was an extremely quick learner. Heck, she was a lot better than I was at that age. I really wished she didnt go to New York but of course, as her uncle, I supported her 100 percent. Besides, I knew she wouldnt let all that I taught her go to waste. Shed find some way to drive again in New York.

She has a good head on her shoulders and whatever happened to her here that made her just pack up and leave everything behind must have been one hell of an ordeal.

So I was stuck doing the deliveries again myself for a while but Miharu did make an interesting point. My own son was at the age she was when I first taught her how to drive. I started feeling excited again. The prospect of teaching another fresh, young driver filled me with anticipation.

Who would have thought that my boy would be as resistant to driving as bugs are to insect spray? My own flesh and blood had absolutely no desire to learn and only saw the whole thing as a chore. Well, it really was, but Miharu never found it to be as tiresome as Takumi did.

There was a silver lining, however. Takumis want of sleep. He unwittingly drove as fast as he could so he could get home as soon as possible to get more sleep. I figured it was the best chance I could hope for so I took it.

I set up the 86 in such a way that he learned something new every time he drove, kind of like a practical course on driving minus the lectures. And I made him do the delivery every single day, regardless of the conditions. I was surprised at how well it worked out. Takumi had an uncanny ability to just see and feel the road and the car. My son was a natural. Granted, he took longer to learn than Miharu did. Five years. But at least he was almost at the level Miharu was before she left. It was more than I anticipated.

Then came the day when Yuuichi told me about a downhill race on Akina with a team from Akagi. I couldnt believe my luck. And all the boy wanted in exchange was a full tank of gasoline! I had full confidence that Takumi would win.

And so it went. That first race was followed by a GT-R, an EG6, even some races on Usui and Myogi. I could hardly contain my delight. Takumi even started asking me questions, though he almost always took them back. It was a start.

When the 86s engine gave out, I knew our “lessons” would become more difficult. Takumi still basically only won his races by either skill or luck, not with knowledge which he still sorely lacked. But I knew I at least made progress in one aspect: Takumi began to enjoy driving and racing.

Another surprise came when Takumi decided to join a team called Project D. It was then that I decided to just give the 86 to Takumi. I was glad he had found people he can learn from, people he wasnt hesitant to ask questions to.
Wait, was that the phone?

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Takumi

The first week after Miha-chan left, I was really lonely. I was so used to having her around every weekend. I missed our late night talks. I missed her teasing. I missed all of her.

What I missed most of all was her doing the deliveries to Akina. Damn that baka oyaji. Almost as soon as shed left, I got stuck with driving to the hotel. I dont know how she did it. I mean, Miha-chan actually enjoyed doing the deliveries. In fact she volunteered to do it. All I wanted was to curl up in bed and sleep.

And let me tell you, driving with that annoying paper cup was hard. I couldnt believe that baka oyaji didnt expect me to spill a single drop. I tried everything from driving slow to not braking at all. Well, I eventually got the hang of it but I couldnt imagine how Miha-chan never complained about it at all.

It wasnt all that hard keeping the whole driving thing from Itsuki. I mean, the guy thought I was just a sleepyhead anyway. In a way he was right. Blame that baka oyaji. I was glad when I started finishing the deliveries faster and faster. Yup, you guessed right. I wanted my sleep.

Sometimes Miha-chan called and I complained to her about everything. She only laughed and told me, “Just think of it as early morning exercise.” Right. Like that helped.

The yellow FD came as a surprise to me. But I was more irritated at it. I had to pass it. It was driving too slowly. How was I supposed to know the FD driver was part of the RedSuns team Itsuki, Iketani-senpai and Kenji-senpai was yammering on about? And how was I to know that defeating that FD would start a chain of events that would change the way I viewed driving forever?

So I raced. I was forced to, at first. Eventually I began accepting challenges on my own. Battle after battle I felt a growing need to prove that I could win. Then it hit me. I liked driving. I was actually good at it.

When Ryosuke-san approached me and asked me to join a racing team he was forming, I was both a bit shocked and pleased. It was an honor that someone as skilled as he was recognized a, shall we say, talent in me. I knew I would learn a lot from him, and I wanted to see how I stood up against other drivers, so I agreed.

Now Im the teams downhill ace. Its fun and Im learning a lot at the same time. Iketani-senpai and the others are even surprised that I can actually understand cars a lot better now. I guess I have that baka oyaji to thank for teaching me to drive. Most everything that Ive learned came from doing all those deliveries.

Another factor thats contributed to my improvement lately, however, is Keisuke-san. I have a feeling hes taken it upon himself to be the one to defeat me and its that rivalry, and the fact that I hate to lose almost as much as he does, thats fuelling me to improve. Its a big world out there. I still have a lot to learn.

Phones ringing. I better go get that.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Keisuke

I lost my best friend.

Well, technically, she just moved away. But nevertheless, I didnt get to see her or talk to her as much as I wanted to. Stupid Miha-chan.

I kept the phone she gave me and, for a while, she called me everyday. The calls dwindled over time. I missed her terribly. I kept asking to see her but shed always just laugh and tell me, “Soon, Kei-chan.”

Soon. Hah! How is six freakin years “soon”?

A lot happened during that time. I went into, lets call it, a “rebellious stage”. I joined a street gang, got into a lot of trouble, became the leader of said gang and got into more trouble. Let me tell you, it was rough. My life was going downhill.
Thinking back, I lost my way because Miha-chan wasnt there to anchor me down. She wasnt there to guide me. I realized how dependent I really was on her and just how much she meant to me as a friend. During that period in my life I could tell how worried she was whenever we talked on the phone. She scolded me a lot but without her physically there beside me, she really wasnt able to do much.

I was taken aback one day when I turned eighteen. Aniki dragged me to his FC, strapped me to the passenger seat, and took me for a ride. Aniki pretty much left me on my own after Miha-chan left. Besides, he was always busy studying, tinkering with his car and whatever else. To this day I dont know why he suddenly took an interest in me.

I pretty much sulked the whole ride to Akagi. At least, that was until we reached the peak. It was at that moment that I knew the real meaning of fear.

Aniki drove down the mountain at amazing speed. I think I screamed like a little girl but he was relentless. And indescribably good.

I decided then and there to become as good, if not better, than Aniki. I got myself an FD so I could drive a Rotary, just like Aniki. I practiced every chance I could and I was happy to see that Aniki approved. He even said I was skilled, that I was a natural.

A few months later, Aniki formed a team of drivers handpicked by him and called it the Akagi RedSuns. I became Anikis number two driver and we took the street racing world by storm. We were featured in countless magazines and people who were into racing knew who we were. We were unstoppable.

That was until we went to Akina.

Takumi Fujiwara beat me. Not only once, but twice. Twice! Whats worse, he beat Aniki too. I swore that I would be the one to defeat him.

Aniki, however, had different plans. He wanted to form a new team and asked Takumi to be one of the drivers. I was outraged, at first. But I quickly came to realize how advantageous this was. Aniki would realize his dream of reaching the top of the street racing world, and I would get to keep my eye on Takumi.

If Takumi did ten runs, Id do twenty. If he stayed up for an hour later than we were supposed to, Id stay up for two. I was determined to become better than he was. Although I had to admit, he was a good kid and even if I dont show it much, I totally supported him. After all, he carried Project Ds name. But Im still going to defeat him. Then, Im going to race professionally.

I wish Miha-chan could see what Ive accomplished.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Ryosuke

It was hard but I dealt with it. I had to.

Whether I wanted to admit it or not, Miharu had gotten under my skin. The first few weeks after I had resolved to get her out of my system proved to be arduous. I dont know how I did it but I somehow managed to make it happen.

I couldnt completely forget her, though. I made a promise to become a terrific driver and I felt like I owed it to her to do so. The day I got my FC I immediately headed to Akagi and tested myself. I knew I had a lot to learn.

I took up circuit, karting and street racing. I read every single automotive book I could find. I trained hard and pushed myself. And it paid off. Magazines wanted to interview me, professional teams wanted to recruit me…I was well on my way to becoming one of the top amateur drivers around.

I decided to devote myself to racing on mountain passes and as I worked my way to the top, I became known as the White Comet of Akagi. My entire life revolved around racing. And school, of course. I was so busy I hardly had time for anything else.

One day when I was twenty, I received a phone call. I assumed it was one of my fangirls so I told mom to just make up an excuse so I wouldnt have to answer it. The caller was persistent, said my mom, and claimed to have something of utmost importance to tell me. I was irked but I took pity on my mom and took the call. Just as I was about to bite the callers head off, someone spoke. Mind you, I couldnt tell if it was a male or female. The voice was too muffled but the message was crystal clear.

“You are a jerk, Ryosuke Takahashi. Youre so wrapped up in your own little world that you dont even know that somethings wrong. Your brother Keisuke is currently the leader of a frickin street gang and is destroying his life. If he isnt stopped, hes going to end up either dead or in jail. You promised youd take care of him so do your goddamn job!”

I was shocked to say the least. Who was that? And more importantly, was it true?
I did some digging and discovered that it wasnt a prank call. Keisuke was in some serious trouble and I had to do something. Fast. But I didnt know what.

So I did what I knew best. I strapped my brother to the passenger seat of my FC and drove hard down Akagi. I think I scared the daylights out of him but I accomplished what I set out to do. I never heard from the mysterious caller again but Ill always be indebted to whoever it was.

I took Keisuke under my wing and helped him improve his driving. The moniker White Comet of Akagi gave way to the Takahashi Brothers. I wasnt solo anymore. That said, I formed a team called Akagi RedSuns and recruited only the best drivers in our area. Our goal was to become the best and we almost were, until we came to Akina.

I could hardly believe it when Keisuke told me he lost to an 86. A 350-hp Mazda RX-7 FD3S couldnt possibly lose to an 86, could it? I hadnt wanted to watch the match on Akina, preferring to let Keisuke handle everything, but I had to admit I was curious.

And so began my fascination with the driver named Takumi Fujiwara. His rate of absorption, and the way he controlled his car, was amazing. What was even more amazing was that he knew almost next to nothing about cars. When even I couldnt win against him, I figured Id just get him to join me.

That was when I formed a new team called Project D, a special team that will only last for a year. The only year I have left to race. Sometimes I envied Takumi and Keisuke and wished I was the one driving instead.

I wonder if Ill ever get to race again.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Miharu

I cried for almost a week.

It was almost appalling how heartbroken I was. Curse my overly sensitive feelings, as Kei-chan would say. I realized that crying wasnt going to get me anywhere so I forced myself to stop.

I immersed myself in my studies. The boarding school really was a good opportunity for me so I buried myself in work. There was also racing. I got myself a license as soon as I turned sixteen, bought a red RX-8 and hit the streets. I didnt have time for much else.

I still talked to Kei-chan whenever I could. Even though we were far apart I couldnt bear to replace him with someone else. Hell always be my best friend. Thats why I was so mad at what he was doing with his life.

I partially blamed myself for the whole street gang thing. I wasnt there to hit him on the head and set him straight. Then I got angry. Yes, I wasnt there, but Ryosuke was. Where the hell does he get off letting Kei-chan destroy himself like that? Didnt I tell him to take care of Kei-chan? Wasnt it his duty to do so even if I hadnt said anything?

I had worked myself up in such a state that I dont even remember dialing the Takahashis number in Japan. When it finally dawned onto me what I was doing, it was too late to stop. Takahashi-san had already answered the phone and had called Ryosuke over.

I disguised my voice as best as I could. I told myself that this was all for Kei-chans benefit. The call had the desired effect. The next time Kei-chan and I spoke he told me about Ryosukes downhill run and how he wanted to get himself an FD.

There was one downside to hearing Ryosukes voice again. The three years I spent forgetting about him all became for naught. It hit me then that I still had feelings for him. It was staggering, preposterous and wonderful all at the same time. Right then and there, I gave up fighting it and just accepted it.

I loved him.

Somehow, acknowledging the fact made my life just a bit easier. I graduated from high school and got my shot at Harvard. I finished my course in three years and got accepted to medical school.

I recently got to talk to Kei-chan and he told me about Project D. I already knew that Kei-chan and Ryosuke raced against Taku-chan and lost but I almost laughed when he told me they had recruited Taku-chan. I never told Kei-chan he was my cousin. Let him figure it out on his own. Come to think of it, Taku-chan doesnt know Kei-chans my best friend either. What were the odds?

Anyway, I asked Kei-chan how everyone was, hoping for a mention of Ryosuke. That was when I found out that Ryosuke only had less than a year left to race.

This was bad. I had plans and it all involved claiming that race Ryosuke promised me six years ago.

I made arrangements to take a leave of absence from medical school and they granted me six months. I guess that would be enough. I immediately called Taku-chan and told him to make some room for me at their house.

I was coming home.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

A/N: Well that was long. Finally going to start with the main plot. Updates will become a bit slower in coming since Im going to be really busy with preparations for graduation (yay!) so bear with me.

This post has been edited by iluvryosuke on Mar 31 2007, 02:45 AM
Meteor
Posted: Mar 30 2007, 09:23 PM


Were you expecting something else?
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Still not bad.

BTW, Keisuke's FD had 350 bhp then, not 450 bhp.

This post has been edited by Meteor on Mar 30 2007, 09:26 PM
iluvryosuke
  Posted: Mar 31 2007, 02:45 AM


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Ohh, thanks for the info. I'll change it right away.

Disclaimer: I dont own Initial D. The original characters are mine.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

CHAPTER NINE

Present day, six years later

“Oi, Takumi!”

Itsuki waved as Takumi got out of the 86. Iketani also caught sight of Takumi and headed to where Itsuki was standing.

“Well, this is a surprise. Dont you have work today?” asked Iketani as Takumi neared them.

“Yeah, I do but I asked to take the day off,” answered Takumi.

“Why? Do you have a Project D meeting?” asked Itsuki excitedly.

Takumi shook his head. “No. My cousins coming home from America today and I was supposed to pick her up at the airport.”

Yuuichi overheard Takumi and approached the group. “Miharus coming home?”

Takumi was slightly surprised. “You know my cousin, Tencho?”

Itsuki and Iketani turned to the manager with interest.

“Of course. Bunta talks about her all the time. She used to babysit you too. Sweet girl, she was. Very pretty. I wondered why she left,” Yuuichi replied.

Takumi merely shrugged but Itsukis and Iketanis curiosity were piqued because of Yuuichis comments.

“How come Ive never met this cousin of yours?” asked Itsuki.

“How old is she? What does she look like?” pressed Iketani.

Takumi backed away slightly from his friends. “Look, Ill just bring her over here after I pick her up.”

“Oh, yeah. I thought you were going to the airport. Shouldnt you get moving?” wondered Itsuki.

“As I was saying, I was supposed to pick her up at the airport but she called right before I left and said to just pick her up at the train station. She said she wanted to explore the city and view the sights for a bit since shes been away for a long time,” explained Takumi.

“Is she single? Maybe we can set her up with Kenji-senpai,” snickered Itsuki.

“Yeah, maybe then hell stop bugging us here and finally get a life,” chimed in Iketani.

Takumi coughed lightly in response. Yuuichi started to shake his head in disapproval.

Iketani sighed. “Hes standing right behind us, isnt he.”

Itsuki and Iketani both turned to look behind them and saw Kenji with his arms crossed, glaring at both of them.

“You two are unbelievable. I dont see the two of you with girlfriends either, you know,” said Kenji.

Itsuki and Iketani laughed uneasily.

“Anyway, whats all this talk about anyway? Who are you setting me up with?” Kenji asked grudgingly.

Takumi scratched his head. “I dont think my cousin would appreciate being set up with anybody.”

“Why is she coming home anyway? Shes still going to Harvard Medical School, isnt she?” Yuuichi asked.

“Harvard Medical School?” Itsuki, Iketani and Kenji said in unison.

Takumi shrugged. “Miha-chan called me about two weeks ago and said that she had some important business that couldnt be put off any longer. Shell be here for a few months then shes going back to America to finish medical school. I couldnt really ask for more details since she seemed to be in a hurry and she did say well talk once she gets here so I left it at that.”

“Must be pretty important if she took the time off from Harvard to do it. I hope its not family related. Did you hear anything from Junko?” inquired Yuuichi.

Takumi shook his head. “I dont think oba-san even knows that shes coming back. I mean, Miha-chan asked if she could stay with us.”

“Thats strange. I hope its nothing too serious,” replied Yuuichi.

“Ill know when she gets here. Speaking of which, I better get going. I just wanted to stop by and see if you guys wanted to meet her. Shes been asking to meet you,” said Takumi.

“Yeah, well be here when you get back. And remember to put in a good word for Kenji!” said Iketani, earning him a not-so-light punch from Kenji.

Takumi nodded, got into his 86 and drove off.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

I cant believe Im here again.

Miharu inhaled deeply as she got off the train. It felt great to be back home again but she couldnt help feeling a bit out of place. After all, she had been gone for six years. A lot has changed and she was unsure of how to handle it. At the same time, she was excited to see and experience everything.

She wondered about the people shed left behind as well. How was her family? Taku-chan? Kei-chan? Ryosuke? How much have they changed? What did they look like now? Talking to them on the phone isnt the same as being really there and she was anxious about meeting all of them again.

But right now, she had to find Taku-chan. She stepped out of the train station and tried to pick him out from the crowd of waiting people and cars.

She spotted the 86 first but she was uncertain that it was the one she was looking for until she spotted the Fujiwara Tofu Shop sign on the drivers side door. She waved her arm as Takumi stepped out of the vehicle.

“Taku-chan!” Miharu called out.

Takumi walked over to where Miharu was. “Miha-chan?” he asked.

Miharu suddenly engulfed Takumi in a tight hug. “Oh my gosh, Taku-chan! I missed you so much! I cant believe how much youve grown. I feel so giddy I just might scream!” she squealed.

Takumi let out a small chuckle and returned the hug briefly. “Speak for yourself, Miha-chan. Where do you get off being taller than I am?”

Miharu let go of Takumi and stepped back a little. “Am I? I think its just an inch though. But wait, I cant believe thats the first thing you noticed! Arent you glad to see me?”

Takumi laughed then. “Of course I am. Come on, lets get your things in the car then we can talk.”

Miharu glanced at the 86 and said, “That carbon hood sure looks great. I wouldnt have recognized the 86 if it wasnt for the tofu shop sign. Kinda makes the car look a bit meaner. Oji-san changed the engine, right? After your Akagi run?”

Takumi nodded as he loaded Miharus bags in the trunk. “Yeah. Its a lot faster than before. And the carbon hood and headlight covers were Ryosuke-sans idea. You remember I told you about him, hes the leader of Project D.”

Miharu smiled. “I remember. But well talk more on that later. I want to meet those friends of yours at the gas station.”

Takumi and Miharu got inside the car and left.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

“Miha-chan, these are my friends Itsuki, Iketani-senpai and Kenji-senpai. Guys, this is my cousin, Miharu,” Takumi said as he pointed to each of his friends.

Miharu bowed and said, “Its a pleasure. Ive heard so much about you from Taku-chan.”

Itsuki, Iketani and Kenji all stared at Miharu with jaws dropped and eyes wide open.

Yuuichi spotted Miharu and called out, “Miharu-chan!”

Miharu turned around. “Yuuichi oji-san?”

Miharu laughed when she saw the manager and ran towards him. She immediately hugged him and started talking to him. Itsuki, Iketani and Kenji took this opportunity to pull Takumi aside.

“OK, spill it, Takumi. Shes not really your cousin, is she? Shes too beautiful to be your cousin,” growled Iketani.

“How come youve been hiding her from us?” Kenji asked.

Itsuki just kept on nodding in agreement.

“I havent been hiding her, Kenji-senpai. Like I said, shes been in America for the last six years. And yes, she really is my cousin. How can you say something like that, Iketani-senpai?” grumbled Takumi.

“But you know,” said Itsuki thoughtfully, “I think Ive seen her somewhere before. She looks familiar.”

“Havent you been listening, Itsuki?” asked Iketani impatiently. “Miharu has been away for six years. How can you have seen her?”

“I know that,” replied Itsuki defensively. “But she really does look familiar.”

“Maybe she looks like the subject of one of your, ahem, nighttime ventures?” joked Kenji.

Takumi choked out, “Kenji-senpai, this is my cousin were talking about!”

They laughed as a furious Itsuki chased after Kenji.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Later that evening, Takumi and Miharu sat across from each other in a small restaurant. They had just finished ordering dinner and Takumi eyed his cousin speculatively.

“OK, Miha-chan. Now that were alone I want you to tell me what this is all about. Whyd you suddenly decide to come home?” he asked.

“What makes you think somethings up? Maybe I just wanted to come see you guys,” replied Miharu with a cheeky grin.

Takumi raised his eyebrow. “Oh, come on. We both know you wouldnt just pop back here without reason. And you already mentioned something about some unfinished business that couldnt wait.”

“Oh fine. I never could hide anything from you,” pouted Miharu.

Takumi chuckled. “I just know you too well.”

Miharu let out a sigh and said, “OK. I need your help with something but first I have to ask you if you remember the reason why I left in the first place.”

Takumi furrowed his brow in thought. “Of course I remember. But what does that have to do with anything?”

Miharu rolled her eyes. “Try to think about it and tell me what you remember.”

“You left because the guy you were in love with turned you down. Wait, dont tell me youre back because of that guy. Youre still in love with him?”

“More importantly, I want you to try to recall the name of the guy.”

Takumi shook his head. “Miha-chan, that was six years ago. And we never talked about him again after you left.”

“Taku-chan, its Ryosuke.”

Takumis eyes widened. “Hold on. Youre not saying…”

Miharu nodded. “I am. Its Ryosuke Takahashi.”

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

A/N: Whew, that took a while. Thanks to Kumiko-chan for helping me with this one. I swear, for a while there I was stuck.
iluvryosuke
  Posted: Apr 4 2007, 06:37 AM


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Disclaimer: I dont own Initial D. The original characters are mine.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

CHAPTER TEN

“So let me get this straight,” said Takumi as he leaned back from his chair. “Ryosuke-san, as in the Ryosuke-san whos the leader of Project D, was the guy who broke your heart all those years ago. And Kei-chan, the best friend whos also the brother of the guy you were in love with, is actually Keisuke-san, the uphill ace of Project D.”

“Basically, yes.”

“And the reason why you chose to stay with me and that baka oyaji is because you live next door to Ryosuke-san and Keisuke-san and you dont want them to find out yet that youre back.”

“Mm-hmm.”

“Youre still in love with Ryosuke-san and you recently found out from Keisuke-san that Ryosuke-san is giving up racing after this year is over.”

“Yes.”

“So you came back because you plan to make Ryosuke-san fulfill his promise to race you.”

“Right.”

“But Miha-chan, I dont get it. Why?”

Miharu sighed. “Taku-chan, its not something that you have to understand. I just want to race him, thats all.”

“No, I dont believe that. I may not be as smart as you are but I do know that youre somewhat like Ryosuke-san in the way you think. Youre planning something. I want to know what it is,” said Takumi empathically.

Miharu had to laugh then. “You know, I cant believe you can still see through me even after all these years. Am I really that predictable?”

“No, its just that were too close to each other for you to be able to hide anything from me. Even after all these years. And I think youre the same with me. You didnt really think Id just let this go like that, did you?”

“No, I suppose not.”

Takumi looked carefully at Miharu. “OK, if youre not ready to tell me then you dont have to. But Im going to assume that whatever it is youre planning requires that you defeat Ryosuke-san. Do you really think youll be able to do that? Have you even seen him drive?”

“No, I cant say I have. I left before he had gotten his FC,” said Miharu wistfully.

“Im warning you, Miha-chan. Hes good. I mean, superbly good. He even has all the smarts to back it all up. I should know, Ive raced against him, Ive ridden shotgun with him and hes currently the leader of Project D. Hes never wrong with those simulations of his. Do you think you can go against someone like that?”

“Take me to Akina,” Miharu said suddenly.

Surprised and more than a little confused at the abrupt change in topic, Takumi sighed but relented. “OK. But you better have a good explanation for all of this. Im starting to get a headache.”

Miharu giggled. “Dont I always?”

“Give me a headache? Yes,” grumbled Takumi, deliberately misinterpreting Miharus reply.

Miharu lightly socked Takumis shoulder and the two laughed as they left for Akina.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Miharu was quiet as Takumi drove up Akina. Takumi kept glancing at his cousin, checking to see if she was all right but unwilling to break her concentration. And he could see that she was absorbed on something. Her gaze was fixed on the road ahead, as if she was afraid shed miss anything.

Takumi drove as smoothly and as normally as possible, giving Miharu the chance to look for whatever it was she was looking for. They reached the peak a few minutes later. Takumi parked the 86 and shut the engine off. He turned to Miharu, waiting for her to start talking.

“Akina hasnt changed much, has it,” said Miharu thoughtfully.

“Not really. Its pretty much the same as its always been,” said Takumi.

Miharu turned to face Takumi and looked directly into his eyes. “Taku-chan, I know oji-san already gave you this car but will you let me drive?”

Takumi was a bit taken aback by the request. It dawned onto him that, come to think of it, hed never actually seen Miharu drive at all before. When they were younger, Miharu made the deliveries to Akina at the same hour that he does so now and during that time he had always been asleep.

He looked back at his cousin with renewed interest and a whole lot of curiosity. He began to piece together some details he never thought to connect before. Now that I think about it, Miha-chan started driving earlier than I did. She did the deliveries for three years before she left. That baka oyaji trusted Miha-chans driving. Did I just assume that she drove normally? If that baka oyaji was the one who taught her then I highly doubt it. And I remember seeing Miha-chan always talking to that baka oyaji and reading all those books.

“OK. But this cars different from before. Its more difficult to drive,” warned Takumi.

“Its got an AE111 engine, right? From the sound, I think it roughly makes about 240-hp. And the VVT-i seems to have been removed. TRD spec, I suppose? Then I should be able to rev it up high, maybe 10000 or 11000 rpm?”

Takumi gaped at her cousin. “How did…did you ask that baka oyaji what he did with the car?”

“No, I havent spoken to oji-san since last year,” said Miharu amusedly.

“Then how did you know?” persisted Takumi.

“Its what I observed from our little drive. Was I wrong?”

Takumi just shook his head. Miharu laughed at Takumis expression.

“Taku-chan, just because I havent been here for six years doesnt mean I stopped driving and learning about cars. I was just as involved with racing in America as I was here. Ive been driving longer than Ryosuke has too. Doesnt mean Im better than he is though, thats why I want to show you what I can do. You said it yourself. Youve seen him drive, you know how he thinks. Now I want to show you how I drive, how I think. Then you can tell me if I have a chance of beating Ryosuke or not.”

“All right. Ill do my best but I cant promise anything too detailed. Ive only just started learning about the technical stuff,” said Takumi.

They both stepped out of the car and swapped places. Miharu adjusted the seat and mirrors to her preference then peeled off the parking lot without warning. Takumi jumped a little and felt apprehensive as they neared the first corner. As Miharu coolly tackled each corner, Takumi gradually relaxed then became blown away by her driving. She stuck so close to the walls and guardrails that Takumi thought she hit them, but she never did.

His cousin was astounding. Not only did she drive well but she knew every corner, every gutter, and every part of the entire mountain. Its like shed just driven the course yesterday instead of six years ago.

When they reached the base, Miharu turned off the engine and stared at the steering wheel. She smiled as she ran her hands back and forth over the steering wheel. “This is a good car, Taku-chan. Ive always loved driving it and I have so many memories with it. Heck, I learned to drive with it.”

Takumi, on the other hand, was still speechless. His mind raced with information. He was startled out of his thoughts when Miharu put her hand on his shoulder and looked at him with concern. “Taku-chan?”

“Miha-chan, that was amazing! Its like I was riding with Ryosuke-san. I cant believe Im saying this but you have a chance if you race him. But please tell me youre racing on Akina.”

Miharu shook her head. “No. I want to race him on Akagi.”

“But thats suicide, Miha-chan! Thats his home course! The only advantage I probably had over him when I raced him was that I knew the course better than he did. Ryosuke-san on Akagi is like sticking fish in water,” exclaimed Takumi.

“Theres one thing youre forgetting, Taku-chan.”

“What?”

“Akagi is my home course, too.”

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Keisuke dialed Miharus number for the umpteenth time but got the voice mail yet again. Keisuke threw the phone on his bed in disgust and headed to Ryosukes room.

“Aniki, Im coming in,” he called out from outside the door.

Keisuke opened the door and found his older brother, predictably enough, sitting on his desk in front of the computer, typing away. Keisuke went inside, closed the door then flopped back on Ryosukes bed.

“Something bothering you, Keisuke?” asked Ryosuke without looking away from the computer.

“Im just irritated with a friend of mine whom Ive been trying to contact for the past week,” replied Keisuke vaguely.

“Hmm,” said Ryosuke. Its probably Miharu. Its almost funny how Keisuke dances around the topic of his best friend with me. Its been six years.

“I just want to talk to her, thats all. Ive been missing her more and more lately,” mumbled Keisuke.

“Shes probably just busy, Keisuke. Harvard Medical School isnt exactly a walk in the park,” remarked Ryosuke calmly.

Keisuke sat up in astonishment. Ryosuke allowed a small laugh to escape him and said, “You know, its OK to talk about Miharu with me. That is unless youre still upset with me because of what happened six years ago.”

Keisuke sighed and lay back down on the bed. “Of course not. I never blamed you for anything. You both made your choices and I just got stuck somewhere in the middle of it, thats all. Its just that I still miss her so badly sometimes.”

“Well, she is still your best friend so thats normal.”

“Ive been trying to call her for a week now and her phones off. I mean, its never off. And we try to talk to each other at least once a week.”

“Youre worrying too much, Keisuke. Im sure shes fine. Like I said, shes probably just busy.”

“Yeah, I guess so. But Aniki, howd you know she went to Harvard?” asked Keisuke.

“Its a pretty big deal, isnt it? Mom and Dad have been telling me about her. Theyre even asking why I didnt choose to go there myself,” said Ryosuke nonchalantly.

“I guess it cant be helped. I mean, they are best friends with the Watanabes.”
Ryosuke simply shrugged. Keisuke then remembered something he wanted to discuss with his brother.

“Say, Aniki, did you ask Fumihiro and the others to accompany me to Akagi tonight? Fumihiro called me a while ago asking me what time wed meet.”

Ryosuke nodded. “Yes, I wanted to talk to you about that. Im trying out a new brand of tires for your car and I want you to test them out on Akagi for a few days. I want to check on the quality and grip and also the wear patterns. I got several sets of different types so it might take you two to three weeks or so.”

“All right, I guess I should get ready then,” said Keisuke as he stood up. As he neared the door, he hesitated. Ryosuke sensed his brothers indecision and asked, “What is it, Keisuke?”

“Aniki, I hope you dont mind me asking but what happened between you and Miha-chan six years ago? I never really found out what was said or done that made Miha-chan just pack up and leave.”

Ryosukes fingers froze on the keyboard. So Keisuke doesnt know. Miharu didnt tell him anything.

“Its a pretty long story, Keisuke. And it happened six years ago so the details are a bit fuzzy. Plus I need to finish this report for my class. Lets talk about it some other time when my head is clearer,” said Ryosuke stoically.

Keisuke nodded understandingly then left the room. When he was sure Keisuke was gone, Ryosuke leaned back on his chair and sighed. In truth, everything that happened was as fresh on his mind as if it had happened only yesterday. But he strongly believed that he had gotten past it emotionally years ago. He would even go so far as to say that it was all a phase and Miharu was probably over it too. Perhaps if Miharu decides to come back they could be friends again.

Even as he thought this way, he reinforced the wall hed built around his heart. Just to be sure.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

A/N: Not really sure about the car details, as always. Remember, I know next to nothing about them. Heh. Any corrections will be welcomed. Thanks again to Kumiko-chan for helping me get my ideas together.
iluvryosuke
  Posted: Apr 8 2007, 12:14 AM


IDW Jr. Member
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Member No.: 4,706
Joined: Dec 23rd 2004
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Disclaimer: I dont own Initial D. The original characters are mine.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

CHAPTER ELEVEN

Takumi thought about all the implications of what Miharu had said. How could he be so clueless? She lived next door to the Takahashi family, didnt she? Of course it would stand to reason that since the Takahashi brothers home course is Akagi, then Miharus would also be Akagi.

He looked at the driving form of his cousin. They were headed home now and Miharu was chatting away but he wasnt listening to any of it. Something else was bothering him but he didnt know how to ask her about it. Deciding there wasnt a subtler way to phrase the question, he just blurted it out.

“Miha-chan, why did you come back for Ryosuke-san? I mean, he rejected you all those years ago. Arent you just setting yourself up for the fall again?”

This silenced Miharu. What Takumi said was true. Shed even asked herself the same questions before. She loved Ryosuke, yes, shed known that for a long time now. That still doesnt justify anything. She could just quietly love him for the rest of her life and accept that there just wasnt any room for her in his heart. She could even love him, let go and move on. So why was she shaking things up?

“When I left,” began Miharu slowly, “I was acting on a purely emotional level. I didnt really think at all. I just clammed up and wallowed in misery and self-pity. The only thought in my mind was that I had to get away. I had to forget.”

Miharu paused. Takumi anxiously waited for her to continue.

“For almost three years thats all I tried to do. I buried myself in schoolwork. I shut myself in my dorm room and didnt socialize. I got a part-time job. I raced on the street. I raced on the track. I immersed myself in so many things just to get my mind and my heart to put everything behind me.”

“But it didnt work, did it,” said Takumi.

Miharu gave Takumi a small smile. “For a while, it did, actually. But then something happened to Kei-chan.”

“To Keisuke-san? Did he have an accident?”

“You could say that. He was in such a bad way I even thought about coming back just to set him straight. But then I thought, where was Ryosuke while all of this was happening to his brother? Then before I realized it I was talking to him. Of course, he didnt know it was me he was talking to. But I knew. It was at that moment when all the walls I had built, all the effort I had made to forget him, just crumbled around me.”

Miharu stopped the car and Takumi became aware that they had reached home already. Miharu parked the 86 then shut off the engine but didnt make any move to get out so Takumi also stayed inside.

“After I had accepted that I still loved him,” continued Miharu, “I began to think about what happened objectively. I recalled all the things that Ryosuke and I did together, from the talks we had to those trips at the coffee shop. I was looking for closure, to not forget but to just let go and live the rest of my life. Then I recalled the kiss.”

“Kiss?” Takumi gaped at his cousin. “Wait, you kissed Ryosuke-san?”

Miharu laughed heartily at Takumis stunned expression. “Why is that so weird?”

“I dunno I guess I just never pictured him outside of anything but cars and computers,” mumbled Takumi, “but go on, this is getting interesting.”

Miharus laugh softened to a chuckle then said, “As I was saying, I recalled the kiss Ryosuke gave me before I left. Oh, Taku-chan, I dont want to embarrass you with the details but it was mind-blowing. Then it hit me. It wasnt a kiss you can give to someone you dont like even a little bit. I may be grasping at straws, Taku-chan, but Im holding on just because of that one kiss. Call me crazy but I think that kiss showed the real Ryosuke, his real feelings.”

“And what if he still decides that he doesnt want to have a relationship? Will you run away again?”

Miharu shook her head. “No, theres nothing to run away from anymore. Ill still go back to Harvard and finish medical school then Im coming back here. I belong here, Taku-chan.”

Takumi pulled Miharu close and hugged her as tightly as the bucket seats would allow him to. “Dont just be saying that, Miha-chan. Make sure that this time you really are prepared for anything that might happen.”

“Im sure, Taku-chan. It was stupid of me to leave in the first place. I dont want to be apart from you or Kei-chan anymore. And Ryosuke…Ill just have to respect his feelings, wont I? Theres no shame in loving him and Im tired of denying it.”

“Ill help you whenever I can, Miha-chan. Hang on, does Keisuke-san or Ryosuke-san know that Im your cousin?” asked Takumi.

“Its funny but no. Kei-chan only knows you as Taku-chan. And I dont think I ever mentioned you to Ryosuke.”

“I wonder how theyll react when they find out, especially Keisuke-san since hes your best friend and all. When are you planning to let them know youre back anyway?”

“Soon. First, I need a car.”

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

“Bunta oji-san!” squealed Miharu upon seeing her uncle.

Bunta looked up from his newspaper just as Miharu tackled him. He laughed and hugged his niece. Takumi shook his head as he watched them then went back outside to unload Miharus bags.

“Howve you been, Miharu-chan? Look at how youve grown!” exclaimed Bunta.

“I missed you so much, oji-san! I never forgot everything you taught me.”

“So you kept driving?”

“Of course! Didnt have much chance to drift since there werent any mountains where I was but I raced on the street, track, even did some gymkhana. I drove like crazy and practiced every chance I got.”

“Good to know. Been to Akina yet?”

“You know it. Oji-san, Taku-chans 86 is incredible!” gushed Miharu.

“So you drove? How was it?” asked Bunta.

“Great! I love the new engine. Wherever did you find a gem like that?”

“From Masashi, of course. You know how it is with us.”

“About that, oji-san. I was wondering if you could help me get a car.”

“Just tell me what you want and Ill ask Masashi right away. What did you drive in America anyway?”

“A red RX-8. RE Amemiya tuned, of course,” replied Miharu.

“Not too bad. You want to get the same car then?”

Miharu shook her head. “I was thinking about getting a 4WD. I saw that Impreza of yours parked outside. Taku-chan mentioned that you just recently bought it.”

“Yes. Im making him alternate between using the Impreza and the 86 when doing the deliveries. Its kind of like you alternating between your moms Evo III and the 86. What car did you have in mind?”

“Well, Ive been wanting the 2005 Impreza. Preferably the STi model, black with manual transmission. And I want Masashi oji-san to tune it to around 300 to 350-hp for touge. It would definitely need some serious weight reduction too so I was thinking of getting the C-WEST body kit.”

“Any particular preference for the aftermarket parts?”

“Id like Cusco for the coilovers and the roll cage. Maybe a pair of Bride seats. I need the car to still be street tuned because Ill be using it to get around so the air conditioner is a must.”

Bunta rubbed his chin thoughtfully and considered all that Miharu was asking. “Its a tall order but it can be done. How soon do you need it?”

“Is a week enough time?”

“That soon? Then we need to get started right away. Ill call Masashi and have him look for the car. In the meantime, you go shopping for the parts youll be using. You still know how to tune cars, dont you?”

Miharu laughed. “Of course. I did most of the work on my RX-8.”

“Good. Because if you need the car in a weeks time, youll have to work with Masashi on your car. Ill help out too, of course.”

Miharu gave her uncle a peck on his cheek. “Youre the best, oji-san.”

“You did ask your moms permission, right? This is going to cost quite a lot, Miharu-chan,” warned Bunta.

Miharu waved her hand dismissively. “Its not a problem. Im using the money I earned so you dont have to worry about a thing. Besides, mom and dad dont even know Im here yet.”

Bunta cast a surprised but amused look at his niece. “What are you up to, young lady?”

Miharu giggled. “Dont worry, oji-san. Ill tell them soon enough. Just trust me, OK?”

“I always have, Miharu-chan.”

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

“You seem out of it, Keisuke,” commented Fumihiro.

Keisuke turned to the man beside him distractedly. Realizing that he had indeed been spacing out, Keisuke ran a hand through his hair in frustration.

“Sorry about that, Fumihiro. I just cant seem to concentrate tonight.”

Fumihiro looked curiously at Keisuke. “Anything wrong?”

Keisuke seemed to hesitate. A week had passed since Ryosuke had asked them to test out the tires he bought on Akagi and they still werent finished. He glanced at Kenta and his mechanic who were changing the tires on his FD then fixed his gaze back to Fumihiro.

“Lets take a walk,” Keisuke said, angling his head in the opposite direction of where the FD was parked.

Fumihiro nodded, more than a little worried. After all, even if Keisuke was the more outgoing between the two brothers he still kept mostly to himself and didnt talk much about personal matters with just anyone.

When they had gained a significant distance from the others, Keisuke said, “I hope you dont mind me talking to you about my problems, Fumihiro. Its just that I dont have anyone else to talk to about this.”

“I dont mind in the least, Keisuke,” assured Fumihiro. “Id be happy to help you with whatevers troubling you.”

“Its not so much that I need any help,” said Keisuke undecidedly, “more of I need a different point of view on something.”

“What is it then?”

“You have to promise not to say anything to anyone, especially Aniki, since this mostly concerns him,” cautioned Keisuke.

“Ryosuke? I promise. Did you two have a fight or something?” asked Fumihiro agitatedly.

Keisuke laughed. “No, no. This happened years ago and not too many people know about it but Ive been thinking about it lately.”

“OK, start from the beginning.”

“Well, there was this girl who used to live next door to us,” began Keisuke, “and the minute I laid eyes on her I knew shed be my best friend for the rest of my life.”

Fumihiro was surprised at Keisukes words. Hed never seen either Ryosuke or Keisuke with anyone else. Granted there had been an occasional girlfriend or two but no one really close to them.

“I met her when I was seven and shes the same age as I am. Aniki was nine at the time. It was so funny back then and I always used to tease her about it but the moment she saw Aniki she had this huge crush on him. I guess you could call it love at first sight but she always denied loving him even when we entered junior high. I always saw that time as the turning point in their relationship.”

“A turning point? You mean, she became Ryosukes girlfriend?”

“Far from it. But it was at that point when I realized that Miha-chans feelings wasnt one-sided after all.”

“Her names Miha-chan?” asked Fumihiro dumbly, a bit shocked at what he was hearing.

Keisuke laughed again. “Are you just going to repeat everything I say?”

“Sorry, Ive just never seen this side of you and Ryosuke before. Please continue,” replied Fumihiro while shaking his head, trying to maintain focus.

“Anyway, Miha-chan and I started pretending we were going out when we reached junior high so we would avoid unwanted attention from other people. Miha-chans a very pretty girl so guys were always asking her out back then. When Aniki found out that we were going out he looked ready to kill me. Thats when it hit me. Aniki liked Miha-chan but he was as much in denial about it as she was.”

That was something Fumihiro could imagine. Ryosuke wasnt the type to show his emotions freely, especially over a girl.

“They started to become closer to each other when they found out that they both liked cars. I thought that they would finally get together then but when Miha-chan confessed her feelings to Aniki, he rejected her. I was so sure he would jump at the chance thats why I couldnt believe it when Miha-chan told me he didnt want her. She was so broken up about it that she left Japan without saying anything to anyone. That was six years ago,” finished Keisuke.

Fumihiro digested all of the things Keisuke had told him but he was still confused, “What is it you wanted my opinion on then?”

“Ive never really thought about why, Fumihiro. I was too depressed back then because Miha-chan left and then I became so busy with driving and Project D that it never occurred to me to ask. Im sure Aniki liked her too but why did he turn her down?”

“Why ask now?”
“I dont know. I suppose its partly because I havent spoken to Miha-chan in almost two weeks. Weve never let that much time pass without a phone call before. Shes practically the only thing in my mind right now its driving me crazy.”

Fumihiro smiled as Keisuke absently kicked on a stone lying on the ground. Who knew there was a girl who could get under the skins of the Takahashi brothers?

“I cant say anything definite since I dont know Miha-chan at all and I can only guess at what Ryosuke feels. My take on it is that maybe Ryosuke was intimidated by her,” said Fumihiro.

“How do you figure?” asked Keisuke.

“Well, Ryosukes a pretty rational guy. He uses his brain to justify everything he sees around him in a logical way. But love isnt supposed to be logical. It isnt a science you can just explain away and I think that scared him,” clarified Fumihiro.

“I never thought about it that way,” said Keisuke contemplatively.

“She sounds like a great girl, though. Now I want to meet her.”

“Yeah. I sure wish shed come back,” grumbled Keisuke.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Meanwhile on Akinas peak, Masashi and Bunta stood beside each other and waited for the black GDB to approach them.

“How was it, Miharu-chan?” asked Bunta.

“Its wonderful!” said Miharu gleefully. “Its power is balanced on both uphill and downhill. However, I want the rear to swing out a bit more when Im entering a corner. And lets raise the ride height a bit because its way too low for me to slip the tires into the gutters.”

“That should be easy. Anything else?” inquired Masashi.

“I think that should be it. I cant wait to try it on Akagi.”

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

A/N: Thanks to everyone who reviewed, I highly appreciate all the comments and constructive criticisms. Ill do my best to take into account all of your suggestions. Special thanks to Bop for all the help with the car stuff. Hope I got it right.
iluvryosuke
  Posted: Apr 15 2007, 07:19 AM


IDW Jr. Member
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Group: Members
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Joined: Dec 23rd 2004
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Disclaimer: I dont own Initial D. The original characters are mine.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

CHAPTER TWELVE

“Whoa, check out the GDB, Iketani-senpai!” exclaimed Itsuki.

Iketani and Kenji looked up from their conversation just as the said GDB pulled up next to one of the gas pumps.

“Wow, that is awesome!” said Iketani. “You dont see a lot of those around here.”

Yuuichi chose that moment to step out of his office. He eyed the GDB that the three were gawking at then his eyes brightened with recognition.

“Hey, Miharu-chan!” he called out.

“Miharu?” the three boys said in unison.

Miharu stepped out from the car and waved at them. “Hey, guys! Yuuichi oji-san, Id like a full tank of high octane, please.”

Yuuichi looked sharply at his two employees. “You two! Dont just stand there! Get moving!”

Iketani and Itsuki snapped back to attention. They both hurried over to Miharus car and started to fill its tank with gasoline. Just then, Takumis 86 arrived and parked behind Kenjis 180SX.

“Hey, Takumi,” greeted Kenji as Takumi made his way over to him. “We were just drooling over Miharus car.”

Takumi glanced at his cousin who was deep in conversation with Yuuichi. Iketani and Itsuki walked over to them, having just finished attending to Miharus car.

“That car is sweet!” said Iketani.

“Yeah. I wish I could see it run on Akina,” added Itsuki.

Iketani snapped his gaze on Takumi. “Wait. Dont tell me. Is she a street racer too?”

Before Takumi could answer Iketani, Miharu skipped towards them.

“Oh my gosh, I feel so excited I can hardly sit still!” she said.

“Why is that, Miharu?” asked Kenji.

“Well who wouldnt be? My cars all finished! Bunta oji-san, Masashi oji-san and I have been working nonstop on it the entire week and a half since I arrived. And now that its all done, Im going to Akagi tonight.”

“Akagi? You mean Mt. Akagi?” asked Itsuki incredulously.

Miharu gave Itsuki an amused smile. “I dont think there are any other Akagis around, Itsuki.”

Kenji, Iketani and Itsuki cast each other looks of worry. Takumi folded his arms over his chest, the corners of his lips twitching. Miharu checked her watch and said, “Oh, I didnt realize it was this late already. I better get going. See you at home, Taku-chan. Bye guys!”

Miharu kissed Takumi on the cheek, waved again to the others then ran to her car and sped off.

“Oi, Takumi, why dont you stop her? You dont know what will happen to her in Akagi!” said Itsuki.

“Oh, I wouldnt worry about her,” said Takumi breezily.

Iketani eyed Takumi speculatively, “All right. How good is she?”

Itsuki and Kenji gaped as they thought about what Iketani was insinuating.

Takumi smiled. “Good enough to massacre me on Akagi. It is her home course, after all.”

“Shes good enough to beat you? And Akagis her home course?” asked Kenji in amazement.

“Figures,” grumbled Itsuki. “Doesnt anyone from your family drive normally?”

Takumi chuckled. “Apparently not.”

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

It was only 9 oclock in the evening when Miharu reached the base of Mt. Akagi. She drove slowly and, as she had done with Akina, she surveyed the course, taking note of all the things that have changed and those that havent. She even got out of the car a couple of times to check certain cracks on the road she didnt recall seeing before.

She mentally pictured an image of the Akagi she remembered and compared it to the Akagi shes seeing now, carefully committing each minute detail to memory. She made several trips going both uphill and downhill until she felt that she could drive the mountain with her eyes shut.

It hasnt really changed all that much. Im glad. I really love this place, thought Miharu.

An hour later, she parked her car at the peak of the mountain, reclined her seat and closed her eyes. It was tiring business driving nonstop and at the same time gathering all that information.

I must be out of shape, she thought with a yawn. Thats six years without tackling a mountain pass for you. I should talk Taku-chan into letting me do the deliveries while Im here, just to get my stamina back up.

Without meaning to, she fell asleep.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Dammit to hell, Miharu Watanabe! Where are you? thought Keisuke as he stomped to his brothers room. He didnt even bother knocking and barged in unannounced.

“Aniki,” he declared, “dial my cellphone number and see if it rings. I want to make sure this stupid thing is still working.”

Ryosuke glanced up from the thick textbook he was reading with a slightly incensed, mostly amused expression on his face. “I take it you still havent been able to contact Miharu?”

“Its been two and a half weeks!” said Keisuke in a loud, irritated voice. “Somethings definitely wrong here.”

“Keisuke,” said Ryosuke firmly, “Im sure if anythings wrong, her parents will let you know.”

Keisuke groaned and buried his face on Ryosukes pillow. He let out a muffled scream of frustration. Ryosuke couldnt help but grin.

“I swear shes going to be the death of me,” intoned Keisuke.

Ryosuke shook his head and decided hed had enough of Keisukes griping. He turned back to his textbook and said, “How are those tires coming along? Tested all of them yet?”

“Were down to the last three sets. We should finish by tonight,” replied Keisuke, checking his watch. “Its ten-thirty. I should get going.”

“You do that. Call me when youre done and Ill come up to Akagi to check out the tires.”

“Right. Provided that this phones still working,” muttered Keisuke under his breath.

Ryosuke did his best not to laugh as Keisuke left the room whacking the poor cellphone on his palm.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

A Rotary, thought Miharu, still half-asleep. That sounds just like a…

Miharu opened her eyes with a start. Dammit! I fell asleep!

She hurriedly rubbed the sleep from her eyes and checked her watch. Eleven. Shed been asleep for an hour. That isnt so bad, she realized with relief.

She blearily reached her hand to the ignition to start the engine of her GDB when she again heard the high-pitched cry of a Rotary engine. So I wasnt dreaming. Man, you gotta love the sound of a Rotary. Hang on. A Rotary?!

Miharu frantically looked outside her window and saw a yellow FD and a white van parked several meters from where she was. Two guys were changing the tires on the FD while another stood beside the van, waiting for the driver to come out. She squinted to see the writing on the side of the van.

PROJECT.D?!

“Oh, shit!” swore Miharu under her breath. If the yellow FDs here then that can only mean…

The drivers side door of the FD opened and Keisuke stepped out.

“Kei-chan!” squeaked Miharu. She quickly covered her mouth even though there was no way they would have heard her.

Miharus heartbeat quickened. She stared unblinkingly at Keisukes form, drinking in the sight of him. He was talking to the guy near the van, whom Miharu assumed was Fumihiro, the teams spokesperson and Ryosukes friend Keisuke had told her about, and was gesturing with his hands to the tires.

Gosh, I never realized Kei-chan looks so hot! thought Miharu hysterically.

Miharu took a deep breath and shook her head. Focus, Miharu, she scolded herself mentally. Dont panic. They obviously havent seen you yet. Besides, theres no reason to panic. You came back to Japan to see him, didnt you?

Miharus hand automatically reached for the door handle. Just when she was about to open the door, she hesitated. OK, lets stop and think for a second. Sure, Im anxious to be with Kei-chan again but if I reveal myself now Im sure hes going to run home and tell Ryosuke. And if Ryosuke finds out Im here then Ill lose my element of surprise, so to speak. Argh, why is this becoming so complicated?

While she was arguing with herself, Keisuke screeched out of the parking lot. Miharu stared longingly after the FD, her hand still on the door handle. She knew she missed her best friend but it only dawned onto her now just how desperately she did so. Every time they had spoken on the phone she felt the urge to go back home simply because she missed the comfort she felt when she was with him.

I may not be able to talk to him right now, she resolved internally, but I can at least see for myself how he drives.

She started up the engine of her GDB which gave a low growl as she chased after Keisukes FD.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Fumihiro jumped in alarm when the formerly stationary black Impreza zoomed out of the parking lot just a few seconds after Keisuke left. Kenta ran to where Fumihiro was standing and said anxiously, “Fumihiro-san, I think that Impreza is going to engage Keisuke-san in an ambush battle!”

Fumihiro cursed softly, unsure of what he should do. Should I call Ryosuke? he wondered.

Suddenly, Kenta started laughing. “That Impreza driver has no idea who hes dealing with. Keisuke-sans going to beat the crap out of him.”

Fumihiro looked at Kenta oddly but what he said had a point. This was Keisuke Takahashi, Project Ds uphill ace. They had nothing to worry about. Besides, maybe the GDB had somewhere to go to in a hurry and probably had no intention of going after Keisuke anyway. Maybe.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Hmm, Kei-chan had a ten second head start. I wonder if Ill be able to catch up, reflected Miharu with a smile. She always did love a challenge.

She entered the very first hairpin turn at high speed, swiftly downshifting to second gear. She tackled the corner smoothly, her front bumper practically kissing the guardrail. Upon exiting the corner she accelerated and shifted to third gear, preparing to pitch her car to the right.

This is fun! Driving on Akagi again is truly exhilarating. I cant believe I lasted so long without it. I really was off my rocker when I gave this up, she thought elatedly.

She took the succeeding corners the fastest way she knew how: she stuck a hairs breadth away from the guardrails upon hitting the apex while maintaining the highest speed possible. Her efforts paid off when she caught sight of the FDs rear a few meters ahead of her just before she cleared the tricky first section of the mountain pass.

Ah, there he is. Hmm, now that Ive caught up, I wonder if Ill be able to pass him. Miharu grinned widely before shaking her head. This isnt a battle, Miharu. You just wanted to see how Kei-chan drove so no funny stuff!

Miharu increased her pace, wanting to close the distance to about five feet between them so she could get a better look at Keisukes driving.

Keisuke, however, had different ideas.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

CHAPTER THIRTEEN

Keisuke had noticed shortly after he had begun his downhill run that a car had been steadily making its way closer to him. He glanced at his rearview mirror, checking to see its progress and was a bit shocked to see it tailing him.

When he entered the next corner, he saw the GDB perform a drift right beside him.

“Impressive,” said Keisuke softly. “That you can make that GDB swing out like that means you must be good. Id been planning to just let you pass through but now I want to see how good you really are.”

Keisuke stepped fully on the accelerator, intending to run away from the other car. The GDBs driver wasnt about to let him off that easily and matched his speed turn for turn.

“Call me crazy or arrogant or whatever but youre the perfect tool to take my frustration out on. This is my home course. Theres no way you can overtake me!” muttered Keisuke.

Keisuke clenched his teeth as they neared the tightest turn in Akagi, the right hairpin that very much looks like a V. He veered slightly to the right, preparing to slide his car all the way from the right turn before the V-turn to the V-turn itself. That was his mistake. The GDB saw it as an opening and squeezed itself on the inside, diving into the drift side by side with Keisuke.

“Are you crazy?” yelled Keisuke.

Both cars exited the corner, the GDB having a fender-length advantage. The next left turn allowed Keisuke to regain an equal footing since he was on the inside this time but it was short-lived. The succeeding right turn once again gave the GDB the advantage.

When they exited the corner, the GDB immediately sped up. The short straightaway before the next left hairpin turn gave the GDB a half-cars lead.

“Shit! Hes going to dive in!” Keisuke exclaimed. He tried to prevent this from happening by braking late but the opponent did the same. The GDB jumped on the inside, making full use of its 4WD system and effectively blocking Keisukes line.

Keisuke had been passed. On his home course, even! He couldnt believe it. “Youre not getting away that easily!” said Keisuke determinedly.

But the GDB driver never gave him a chance, sticking so close to the guardrails and often taking the turns faster than he did. They crossed the finish line tail-to-nose. Keisuke screeched to a stop and leapt out of the FD, intending to find out who the driver was but the GDB didnt stop and left. Keisuke stared after it until it was out of sight

Who the f**k are you?! growled Keisuke internally. He fished his phone out of his pocket and dialed his brothers number.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Idiot, idiot, idiot!

Miharu cursed her stupidity. Hadnt she said she would just watch him? So what the hell was she thinking when she overtook him? Miharu then cursed her family. After all, she had the Fujiwara blood running through her veins and being a Fujiwara meant hating to lose.

Miharu parked in front of her uncles tofu shop and headed inside. She saw her cousin just as he was putting the phone down. Before she could greet him, Takumi cut her off.

“What the heck did you do, Miha-chan? Ryosuke-san just called me and scheduled a meeting for tomorrow night on Akagi. He sounded upset.”

Miharu burst out laughing. “Thats Kei-chan for you. Not an hour after I passed him on Akagi and everyone knows.”

“You passed him? Miha-chan, I thought you were just going to survey the course!” said Takumi in disbelief.

“I was!” Miharu said defensively. “He started it!”

Takumi raised his eyebrow dubiously. “Explain to me what happened.”

“Well,” replied Miharu tentatively, “I wanted to see how good Kei-chan was so I chased after him. But I wasnt intending to start a race! I just wanted to watch him, thats all. But he sped up so I sped up too and things got kinda out of hand after that.”

Miharu scratched her head sheepishly while Takumi did his best to hold back his laughter.

“So what now?” asked Takumi. “Ryosuke-san is bound to find out that the GDB who passed Keisuke-san came from here.”

“Pre-emptive strike,” said Miharu suddenly.

“Huh?” replied Takumi in confusion.

“It may be sooner than I thought but this is probably the best chance I have.”

“Miha-chan, what in heavens name are you talking about?”

“Dont worry, Taku-chan. Ill handle everything. Im off to bed,” chirped Miharu. She ran up the stairs, leaving Takumi shaking his head.

Its official. My cousin is a kook.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Takumi had to take the early shift at work so he could attend the Project D meeting. When Miharu volunteered to do the delivery for him, he gladly agreed. He figured Miharu would use her Impreza so he was surprised to find his car missing when he got up.

“Oyaji, wheres Miha-chan?” asked Takumi.

Bunta shrugged. “Probably with her mom. Junko called early this morning in a panic saying that Miharu wasnt at Harvard so I told her that that her daughter had been staying here.”

“And she took the 86?”

“Yeah, I guess she was in too much of a hurry to placate her mom so she left as soon as I told her about it.”

“Right. Well, Ill be going now.”

Takumi left the shop and headed to work.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Sorry, Taku-chan but Im taking your car for a while, thought Miharu resolutely.

While it was true that shed gone to see her mother, that particular errand only took her a couple of hours to complete. She was glad for an excuse to take Takumis car, which she had been planning to do in the first place anyway. She prayed that her cousin wouldnt be too mad at her for involving him unwittingly in her scheme.

Melodramatic that she was, she wanted a grand entrance. Oh yes, she planned to crash in on the Project D meeting. By tonight, she would be with Keisuke again.
And, if all went according to plan, she would be battling Ryosuke.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

“Tell me again what it looked like,” said Ryosuke calmly.

Keisuke paced back and forth in Ryosukes room. “It was black. With Gunma plates. It had a C-WEST body kit. Aniki, I dont know anyone who drives something like that.”

Neither did he, Ryosuke realized. But from Keisukes description of last nights pseudo battle, only someone whose home course is Akagi would be able to pass Keisuke that way. Either that or the driver had a few lug nuts missing from his head.

The precision required to use the V-turn as an attack point was something that Ryosuke expected to see in Project Ds drivers. They were, after all, supposed to be the best in the Gunma area. To think that this mysterious driver would possess such skills, Ryosuke wondered why the GDB had been virtually unknown until now.

“Come on, Keisuke. Lets get going. Well find out who the driver is then you can challenge it to a proper battle if you want,” said Ryosuke coolly.

“Damn straight, muttered Keisuke as he followed Ryosuke out.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Takumi stared blankly at the empty parking space of his 86. He had just arrived from work, fully expecting to see his car parked where it should be but instead no one was home. Even his dads Impreza wasnt there.

He went inside the house and checked the time. He only had an hour to go before the meeting started and he still had to travel to Akagi. He saw the key to Miharus GDB hanging innocently from the key rack.

Takumi swore and growled, “I swear to God I hope you know what youre doing, Miha-chan.”

He snatched the key to the GDB and slammed the door.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Hiroshi Fumihiro was generally a worrywart. So when Keisuke called him from the base of Akagi last night and said that Ryosuke wanted him to come home right away, he worried.

He glanced at Ryosuke and Keisuke who were talking quietly a short distance away. He spoke to the man standing to his right without looking away, “You have any idea what this is about, Matsumoto?”

Shuichi Matsumoto, Takumis mechanic, shook his head. “No. I was hoping Ryosuke-san already told you something.”

Ryosuke and Keisuke seemed to have finished their conversation and approached the group. Ryosuke glanced at his watch and said, “Fujiwaras a little late but he should be arriving any moment now so lets get started. Last night, a black GDB overtook Keisuke on the downhill.”

A shocked silence fell over the group. Keisuke stood beside his brother with his arms crossed and eyes blazing.

Kenta Nakamura shouted disbelievingly, “Thats absurd! How could that have happened?”

Ryosuke turned to Fumihiro and asked, “Fumihiro, did you see any other car here last night besides the Impreza? Anyone who might have seen what happened?”

Fumihiro shook his head. “No, aside from the GDB we were the only ones here.”
Ryosuke nodded with approval, “Good. Because if word of this gets out, Project D is in trouble. Now I want you all to think hard and try to remember if you recall seeing this GDB before. Its black with a C-WEST body kit according to Keisuke.”

Matsumoto pointed behind Ryosuke, “You mean something like that?”

Keisuke swiftly turned around and, sure enough, the same black GDB he had seen last night was parking right beside Ryosukes FC. Ryosuke immediately began analyzing the car by listening to the engine sound. Keisuke, being the hothead that he is, sprinted to the car. The others followed behind him while Ryosuke walked at a more leisurely pace.

The drivers side door opened and Keisuke held his breath in anticipation. A second blanket of stunned silence surrounded the group when the driver stepped out.

“Fujiwara?!” snarled Keisuke.

Takumi held up his hands in front of him in defense. “Hang on, Keisuke-san. I know what happened and I can assure you it wasnt me.”

“Then who was it? And what are you doing with his car?” barked Keisuke impatiently.

Takumi turned to Ryosuke as if asking for approval. Ryosuke gave a slight nod of his head, signaling for Takumi to continue.

“This is my cousins car,” began Takumi.

“And where is this cousin of yours now?” shouted Keisuke.

“Keisuke,” reprimanded Ryosuke, “let him finish.”

Keisuke sulked but did as he was told. Takumi continued, “Last night, my cousin told me all about passing you here on Akagi. I couldnt believe it since she told me she was just going to check out the course. Now this morning she disappeared with my 86 and I have no idea where she is so I took her car to get here.”

“Wait a minute. Did you just say she?” asked Fumihiro.

From a distance, they heard the rumble of a high-rev engine.

“My 86!” Takumi cried out.

As if on cue, the group turned to the entrance of the parking lot just as Takumis 86 came into view. Tension filled the group as the 86 parked in front of them.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Miharu breathed deeply. This was it. Her hands shook as she opened the door and stepped out. She willed her knees to stop trembling as she faced the group, a bright smile on her face.

“Taku-chan, sorry Im late,” she said casually, tossing the key of the 86 to him. He caught it mutely, and Miharu had a feeling she was going to endure a scolding from him later.

Miharu turned to look at the other members of the group. Keisuke was slowly turning purple and she thought that maybe hed swallowed wrong. True to form, Ryosuke kept his face blank and expressionless. She purposefully strode towards him and stopped when she was standing directly in front of him.

“Miharu,” he said, deadpanned.

“Hello, Ryosuke.”

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

A/N: Whew. Glad thats done. As always, reviews and constructive criticisms will be greatly appreciated.


iluvryosuke
  Posted: Apr 20 2007, 08:45 PM


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Disclaimer: I dont own Initial D. The original characters are mine.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

CHAPTER FOURTEEN


It took all of Ryosukes willpower to keep his face impassive. He stared at Miharu smiling up at him and he was suddenly flooded with memories of a time years ago when she had given him that same smile. Back then, he had asked her out to coffee.

Now it just messed with his brain.

Ryosuke Takahashi had been rendered speechless. He scrutinized her every feature, and asked God how it was possible for her to have gotten more beautiful than she was before.

If it was her intention to catch him off-guard, she did a damn good job of it. He couldnt believe that even after all these years she still held a certain power over him. He struggled to regain control of himself, fighting the onslaught of feelings threatening to overwhelm him.

He asked flatly, “What are you doing here?”

Miharu laughed. The sound still had the effect of making him want to laugh along with her.

“Six years and thats the first thing you ask me? Dont I even get an introduction?” she said, waving her hand carelessly towards the rest of the group.

Keisuke, seemingly recovered from his shock, stalked over to Miharu and roughly grabbed her shoulders.

“Ow! Kei-chan!” protested Miharu.

“I cant believe it. It really is you!” said Keisuke in awe.

“Yes, I missed you too, Kei-chan. Now, could you let go? Youre going to bruise me!”

Keisuke didnt listen and instead engulfed her in a bone-crushing hug. Miharu again laughed and hugged back. She closed her eyes, savoring the feel of Keisukes arms around her.

Almost as abruptly as he had taken hold of her, he released her from the hug but kept his hands on her shoulders and started shouting, “What the hell, Miha-chan? Why didnt you tell me you were back? How long have you been here? Were you the one driving that GDB last night? Dammit!”

Miharu blinked. “Kei-chan, take it easy. Ill explain everything but theres something I need to take care of right now.”

She gently wiggled free from Keisukes grasp and turned back to Ryosuke.

“You owe me a battle, Ryosuke,” she said grimly.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Fumihiro gawked as the scene unfolded in front of him. He gazed at the other members of the group and saw his expression reflected in everyone elses faces except for Takumis and Ryosukes.

Matsumoto leaned over to Fumihiro and whispered, “Correct me if Im wrong. I think I just heard her say that Ryosuke owes her a battle.”

Fumihiro simply shook his head, unable to formulate a response.

Kenta burst out, “Thats insane! Why would Ryosuke-san owe you a battle? Who are you anyway?”

Miharu turned her amused glance at Kenta. “You must be Kenta Nakamura. Ive heard about you from Kei-chan.”

That promptly took the wind out of Kentas sails. He turned red and looked at Keisuke helplessly. Keisuke just shrugged.

Takumi realized it was probably up to him to introduce her so he stood closer to his cousin and said, “Everyone, this is my cousin, Miharu Watanabe. Miha-chan, thats Hiroshi Fumihiro-san, Shuichi Matsumoto-san, Shinji Tomiguchi-san and you already know Kenta-san, Keisuke-san and Ryosuke-san.”

Miharu bowed to everyone and greeted them accordingly. She wasnt to be swayed from her objective, however, and cast a meaningful look at Ryosuke.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

“Promise me something, Ryosuke.”
Ryosuke cleared his throat and gruffly replied, “If I can.”
“Promise me youll become a terrific racer and that youll race against me someday.”
Ryosuke saw no harm in that, although he was slightly puzzled by the request. “All right, I promise.”


~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

So she returned to claim that vow. Ryosukes eyes met Miharus. He cleared his throat and everyone looked at him in anticipation.

“I do owe you a race, Miharu. OK, Ill have a battle with you.”

Miharu nodded serenely, but inside she was bursting with excitement.

“The key to my car, if you please, Taku-chan. Lets get started.”

Ryosukes brow furrowed. “You mean now?”

Miharu chuckled. “Im not about to give you time to put together a winning simulation, Ryosuke. Your FCs here anyway so whats the problem?”

Keisuke snatched Miharus arm and pulled her closer to him. “What do you think youre doing, Miha-chan?” he hissed.

Miharu frowned. “What are you talking about, Kei-chan?”

“Since when did Aniki owe you a race? And dear God, what makes you even think you have a chance of beating him? Just because youve driven the course last night doesnt mean youre an expert!”

“I beat you, didnt I?” she pointed out.

“You got lucky!” Keisuke spat out.

“Look,” replied Miharu impatiently, “can we talk about this later? The more time I waste standing here, the bigger the chance Im giving him to beat me.”

“No way, Miha-chan. Not until you beat me in a real battle,” retorted Keisuke.

“Are you serious? Youre not still hung up on what happened last night, are you?” said Miharu exasperatedly.

Keisukes eyes narrowed dangerously. Youre not getting out of this that easily. I know you inside out, Miha-chan.

He cast a smirk at his best friend and said patronizingly, ”Oh I get it. Youre scared you cant do it again. You really did just get lucky.”

Miharu froze, her Fujiwara blood beginning to boil. “What did you just say?”

“You heard me. If I hadnt swerved out last night you wouldnt have been able to pass me at all,” taunted Keisuke.

Miharu clenched her fists, willing herself not to be baited by Keisukes words. She was unable to stop herself, however, from saying, “I can beat you anytime, anywhere, Kei-chan. Make no mistake about it.”

“Prove it,” said Keisuke victoriously, knowing he had her hooked.

“Keisuke,” said Ryosuke in a warning tone.

Takumi shook his head and thought, Hes good. He knows exactly which buttons to push. Miha-chan never had a chance.

“Youre on,” Miharu bit back.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Shit. How did it come to this? Dammit, Kei-chan, you totally ruined my plan! seethed Miharu internally as she sat behind the wheel of her Impreza.

Miharu glanced at the FD pulling up right beside her on the start line. She sighed in defeat. It was more her fault anyway. She couldnt blame Keisuke for wanting a rematch. In fact, she would have asked for the same thing.

Well, nothing I can do at this point. Right now, I just have to concentrate on my opponent. Best friend or not, this is a battle and Im not going to lose.

She bent down and gave her steering wheel a kiss, a habit she picked up when she left Japan, and waited for the countdown to begin.

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

Ryosuke leaned against his FC and stared intently at the two cars on the start line but he focused his attention more on the black GDB. He watched as several emotions flitted across Miharus face and then he saw her lean over to kiss her steering wheel. He frowned, wondering why that particular action bothered him so.

Then it suddenly clicked. He straightened and scanned the area for Takumi. “Fujiwara, get in the car.”

Takumi turned at the sound of Ryosukes voice. He jogged over to the FC. “Ryosuke-san? Whats wrong?”

“Ill explain later. Get in.”

Takumi shrugged but did as he was told. He had just closed the door when the FD and the GDB took off.

“Fasten your seatbelt,” said Ryosuke then started driving without even waiting for Takumi to finish snapping the seatbelt on.

Takumi hurriedly clipped the buckle on then looked apprehensively at Ryosuke. He could only think of one other time when Ryosuke had followed after two battling cars and that was when he himself had driven against Takeshi Nakazatos R32. He wondered what Ryosuke was thinking and decided to just come out and ask.

“Umm, Ryosuke-san? Why are we following after them? Is there any particular reason?”

Ryosukes eyes remained focused on the two cars several meters ahead of them when he asked, “Fujiwara, have you seen how Miharu drives?”

Takumi nodded. “Yes, but only once so far. That was the day she arrived here in Japan a few weeks ago. She had my 86 figured out by just listening to the engine sound and she drove down Akina like she never left. Shes really good and Im not just saying that because shes my cousin.”

“Do you know what car she drove in America? Has she told you anything about racing or working with cars while she was abroad?”

Takumi was puzzled with Ryosukes line of questioning but answered. “I dont recall her saying anything about what she drove and how she was involved with cars when she was there but she did say that she never stopped driving and learning about them.”

“So that means shes been driving even before she left Japan?”

“She also did the morning deliveries before. Lets see, I was nine then so that makes her twelve when she started driving.”

Ryosukes brows knit together, realizing that it was around that time when Miharu buried herself in automotive books. So the whole time she was actually learning how to drive. Shes been driving a lot longer than I have too. Interesting. And if my suspicions are correct, shes not just an ordinary street racer.

“Have you heard about the Nurburgring circuit in west Germany?” inquired Ryosuke indifferently.

Takumi seriously didnt know what to make of this conversation but knowing Ryosuke, he wouldnt be asking these questions without an underlying purpose so Takumi did his best to center his thoughts. “Ive heard about it.”

“Its a 22.8 kilometer long track and a lot of drivers find it to be extremely challenging. Several car manufacturers, in fact, test drive their cars there. One of these car manufacturers is Subaru, whove been testing their cars there since 1992. Now about three years ago, Prodrive, the company responsible for the design and development of the Subaru World Rally Championship cars, worked in collaboration with Subarus test drivers to make the Imprezas performance better. One of Prodrives engineers thought that asking someone who wasnt from the Subaru team to test drive a car would lead to more accurate results so he asked a personal friend to drive the car in Nurburgring. What this engineer wasnt prepared for, though, was how amazing a driver his friend turned out to be. Subaru was so amazed that they hired this person to become a test driver for them,” related Ryosuke.

Takumi, still rather confused by the flow of their conversation, asked, “Im sorry, Ryosuke-san, but I still dont get what this has to do with Miha-chan.”

Ryosuke had to smile. “I should apologize, I do tend to ramble on. What I was trying to get at, though, is that this particular test driver gave one of the fastest laps an Impreza has ever done around Nurburgring. However the driver does something weird before starting to drive.”

“What would that be?”

She,” emphasized Ryosuke, “kisses the steering wheel of the car.”

~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@~~{@

A/N: Shinji Tanaka is a name I thought up for Keisukes mechanic. I dont think there was ever any mention of what his name really is and I thought it would be weird to just keep calling him “Keisukes mechanic” so I took the liberty of naming him. If anyone can provide me with his real name Ill change it right away. As always, reviews will be appreciated, flames will be ignored.

Edit:
Sanae-sama has kindly provided me with the surname of Keisukes mechanic and Ive reposted the chapter with the original authors notes but Ive made the necessary changes, although I retained Shinji to be his first name until its mentioned in the manga or the anime. Thanks, Sanae-sama!

This post has been edited by iluvryosuke on Apr 21 2007, 07:30 PM
j0cey
Posted: Apr 21 2007, 01:38 AM


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Great story so far! Can't wait for the rest of it! Crazy how Miharu's skills are still there ... but she is a Fujiwara after all haha!

L8z! wink2.gif

~ j0cey cool.gif
pnoytecknix
Posted: Apr 21 2007, 07:07 AM


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i hope you dont take too long, but i understand that even authors have lives so its coo....
great stuff btw, keep it up!
iluvryosuke
  Posted: Apr 22 2007, 09:32 AM


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Thanks j0cey and pnoytecknix! Here's the next chapter. Enjoy!

Disclaimer: I dont own Initial D. The original characters are mine.

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CHAPTER FIFTEEN

Keisuke gritted his teeth as he struggled to keep up with the GDB in front of him. It was tough, he had to admit. He had no idea how it happened but Miharus skills were incredible. What she said was true; she could beat him anytime, anywhere.

Keisuke cursed under his breath. When was she planning on telling me about any of this? Dammit, this isnt the time to think about it. Im driving full throttle and shes still pulling away from me!

He took a quick glance at his rearview mirror and saw his brothers FC following them closely. He grinned. “On another note, Miha-chan sure has Aniki all shaken up. He hasnt watched a race like this since Fujiwara and Nakazatos battle. I wonder whats on his mind.”

His grin faded as Miharus GDB entered the left hairpin signaling the end of the complex first section of Akagi. She took the turn at full speed, widening the gap between their cars. What the hell? That entry speed was unbelievable. And her exit speed is just insane!

In Akagi, its easy to crash your car if youre not careful. The entire pass consists of high-speed corners and straights so drivers tend to speed up, but then you suddenly come to a sharp hairpin turn so its really hard to determine when to ease up on the gas pedal. Knowing these particular sections is the key to mastering Akagi and for years that was what Keisuke and Ryosuke have been doing.

But look at this! Miha-chans been gone six years and I can barely keep up with her! Wherever did she find time to learn the course? She couldnt just have done everything in one night, could she?

Keisuke shook his head. “Concentrate on the battle, Keisuke. This isnt just for your personal pride; its also for the pride of Project D. You cant fail!”

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Miharu grimaced when she checked her rearview mirror and glimpsed Ryosukes FC behind Keisukes FD. This is what I was afraid of.

She agonized over what to do. She was sure that by now, Ryosuke had figured out her cars full potential with its current set-up so that advantage was gone. The only thing that she had going for her now was that Ryosuke had never seen her drive before. If she went all out on this battle, Ryosuke would have her completely deciphered.

The reason why she had wanted to battle Ryosuke right away was because it seemed to be the only way she could have won. Admittedly shed never seen him drive and her only basis for his skills were Takumis and Keisukes accounts. She wasnt even sure how accurate they were since those two practically worshipped Ryosuke.

She had originally planned on making a bet with Ryosuke that if she defeated him, hed go out with her. She gave a small smile, acknowledging how completely dumb that plan had been. Ryosuke probably wouldnt have even agreed to something like that. And what if she had lost?

Shed waited six years for this. She shouldnt ruin everything by rushing into things.

She again glanced at the rearview mirror and was a bit surprised to see that there was a slight gap between her and Keisukes FD.

She scowled. What are you doing, Kei-chan? Are you holding back on me?

She dove into the left hairpin and used it as an opportunity to see how Keisuke took the turn. She took her eyes off the road and set her sights on the yellow FD as it went into the corner.

Keisuke wasnt holding back. She was just faster.

She allowed herself a moment of cockiness. It was normal for her to feel that way, she supposed. She and Keisuke were both competitive by nature and that spirit extended, especially even, towards each other.

Im winning against Kei-chan, Project Ds uphill ace! she thought gleefully.

Project Ds ace.

Realization emerged and her gloating subsided. She felt her heart wrench painfully.

Ryosuke…

She knew what she had to do.

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Keisukes grip on the steering wheel tightened as he and Miharu came to the section where he had been passed last night. He watched as Miharu entered the V-turn.

The line shes taking is almost identical to the line Aniki takes when he drives on Akagi. I cant believe it. Theres no way Im going to beat someone whos as good as Aniki.

Keisuke took a deep breath and shook off the dismay he was beginning to feel. Get it together, Keisuke. Youre not Project Ds ace for nothing. You cant give up now!

Keisuke copied Miharus line as he took the V-turn. Upon exiting the corner, he frowned in uncertainty. Had the gap between their cars gotten shorter? The way she had driven on the V-turn, Keisuke expected the GDB to be entering the left hairpin where he had been passed last night. Instead, it was only just beginning to brake for the turn.

I must just be imagining things, he thought.

He soon came to realize that he wasnt just imagining things. He really was catching up.

“What the… is something wrong? I didnt change my pace so its not something I did,” said Keisuke thoughtfully.

He concentrated his attention on the GDB and thats when he noticed that the line Miharu was taking had changed. It wasnt drastic but he could see that she was a few centimeters off the ideal line. He tried to think of a reason for the change but couldnt come up with one.

“I dont get it. Is shes waiting for me? Thats too arrogant, even for her!” growled Keisuke.

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Takumi gawked at Ryosuke. “Ryosuke-san, you cant mean that Miha-chan…”

“I wasnt thinking about it until I saw her kiss the steering wheel. Thats when I began to piece it together. The Subaru drivers name is Mia Fujiwara,” said Ryosuke pensively.

Takumi choked. “Mia Fujiwara?”

Ryosuke let out a small laugh. “Kind of obvious now that I know you two are related.”

Takumi shook his head, unable to believe that her cousin was the same driver Ryosuke was talking about. He looked up when Ryosuke spoke again. “If Im right, and Miharu is indeed Mia, then Keisuke is going to have a hard time with his current level of skill. Im getting excited again. Id missed this feeling. Shes definitely a worthy opponent and I cant wait to battle her.”

The two turned their attention back to the battle. They were nearing the last section of Akagi, just two hairpin turns away from the zigzagging road leading to the final consecutive hairpins. There was still a small gap between Miharu and Keisuke but Ryosuke noticed that the FD was slowly closing the distance. Pretty soon, the gap was gone and their bumpers were almost rubbing against each other.

Ryosukes brow wrinkled in confusion. “Thats strange. At this rate, theyll be heading into the consecutive hairpins side by side.”

Ryosukes prediction proved to be correct. As the two cars entered the left hairpin, Miharus GDB veered to the outside and Keisuke squeezed his FD to the inside. They exited the corner side by side, taking the zigzag road that followed with almost alarming closeness to each other.

They went into the first of the consecutive hairpins alongside each other. Since it was a right turn, the GDB should have been able to get ahead since it was on the inside but for some reason, it wasnt able to utilize that advantage. As the two prepared to enter the next left hairpin, Keisuke was able to pull ahead since he was on the inside line this time around. By the time they reached the next right hairpin, Keisuke had already passed Miharu.

Ryosukes frown deepened as his eyes bored into the back of the GDB. What had happened? This shouldnt be the extent of her skills. At the rate she was going, she should have been able to defeat Keisuke without any trouble at all. There didnt seem to be anything wrong with the car. Did he make a mistake? No, he didnt think that was it. He was certain Miharu and Mia were one and the same. So what was it then?

The race was decided pretty much after that. Keisuke and Miharu crossed the finish line with only a fraction of a second difference between them. Keisuke had won.

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Kenta happily made his way over to Keisuke as the latter climbed out of the FD. “I knew it! Last night was just a fluke! That was amazing, Keisuke-san!”

Keisuke snubbed Kenta and sauntered towards Miharu who had just stepped out of her car. Behind her GDB, Ryosukes FC slowed to a halt. Takumi and Ryosuke also got out and approached Miharu.

Without preamble, Keisuke said, “All right. What the hell was that, Miha-chan?”

Miharu looked puzzled. “I dont know what youre talking about, Kei-chan. What was what?”

Ryosuke crossed his arms over his chest and listened intently. He was asking the same questions himself. Takumi gazed anxiously at Miharu, a mystified look on his face.

“Dont give me that crap, Miha-chan. You know what Im talking about. You were winning and even I could see that. Whyd you change your pace?” asked Keisuke heatedly.

“Honestly, Kei-chan. Youre starting to get on my nerves. I didnt change my pace,” said Miharu with annoyance.

“Yes, you did!” insisted Keisuke.

“If you must know,” said Miharu scathingly, “my tires are shot. Goddammit, Kei-chan, you already won. What the heck is your problem?”

Keisuke examined Miharus face for any sign that she wasnt telling the truth. He still looked doubtful but he relaxed, deciding to accept her answer for now. Takumi sighed, glad that everything was settled. Miharu looked put out but everyone figured it was because she had lost and was feeling sore.

Ryosuke, on the other hand, didnt buy it at all. He kept his eyes on Miharu as she and Keisuke talked. His gut told him that something was amiss and he was rarely wrong when that happened.

He stole a glance at Miharus tires. Those tires are practically new. They should have plenty of grip. And even if they were worn, her skills should be enough to make up for it.

His eyes traveled back to Miharus face and his heart skipped a beat. He shook his head, mentally scolding himself and returned his attention to the matter at hand.

What are you up to, Miharu?

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Miharu shook Takumi awake. Takumi groaned, “What? What time is it?”

“Time to do the delivery, Taku-chan. Come on. Lets take my car. Ill drive,” said Miharu coolly.

“If youre doing the delivery then whyd you wake me up?” grumbled Takumi.

“Just get up and come with me.”

Takumi sighed as Miharu left the room. He sat up and yawned, rubbing the sleep from his eyes.

By the time he got downstairs, Miharu was already waiting in the GDBs drivers seat. He climbed in and strapped his seatbelt on. As soon as he did so, Miharu pulled out of the parking space.

The drive up to the hotel was pretty much uneventful. Miharu didnt speak a word so he remained quiet as well. He figured she was still pissed off about losing to Keisuke. He supposed she just needed to let off some steam, and probably wanted company.

Takumi wasnt expecting anything out of the ordinary when Miharu kissed the steering wheel and began her downhill run. Sure, it was his first time to ride in the GDB but he had already seen her drive hard last night against Keisuke.

So why did this feel different?

Takumi sat up straighter and tried to sort things out in his head. He glanced at his cousin and saw the frown creasing her features. That was when it dawned onto him that she didnt ask him to come along just for company. She wanted him to see something, although he didnt know yet what it was. She was like Ryosuke this way. He mentally smacked himself. He really shouldve known better.

As Takumi paid more attention to her driving, he slowly came to understand why he felt that this run was different: because it was. She definitely wasnt this fast last night. And she definitely didnt enter the corners at this harrowing pace.

He compared this feeling to the time when Miharu had driven his 86 and suddenly remembered that she hadnt kissed the steering wheel back then. Did that mean she hadnt been driving seriously?

Takumis eyes widened. That was it, wasnt it? That was what she was trying to tell him. He said softly, “I think I get it now, Miha-chan.”

Upon hearing those words, Miharus frown eased and a smile took its place. “I knew youd understand.”

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A/N: Thanks to Miguel, your input really helps me along. Thanks to Gyro as well, for giving me the idea for a pass point in Akagi. As always, please review and never flame.
pnoytecknix
Posted: Apr 22 2007, 07:40 PM


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man.... she lost. it was on purpose tho right? everybody knows it too huh, except that fruitloop kenta....
great update! i cant wait for the next chapter.

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