I wrote this fan fiction and even though it is using the idea I have from my fan fiction ‘sacrifice’ I don’t think I will put it on fan fiction net as I feel that this is kind of like a fan fiction of a fan fiction. I am using the ideas from sacrifice but this isn’t my actual story. THIS IS A ONE SHOT INDEPENDENT FROM MY OTHER FAN FICTIONS. But it just uses some of the ideas and scenarios in my other fan fiction.

But I got the idea for this story when I was reading my friend’s blog, and somehow it involved a whole thing about Tezuka and his sacrifice- what he did with his arm. This then made me want to explore the idea of what it really meant, and how his opponent must feel. Since Shiraishi is the only character I feel I can try and write, as I think I simply don’t have a grasp of any other characters, (because I can’t be bother to unwind their wools- don’t worry if you don’t get this. This is a reference to one of my previous entries on the blog) I decided to do a what if idea- what if Tezuka had the problem with his arm when he is playing with Shiraishi (in this story the two of them are playing singles 1 and both schools have two win each, so this is the deciding match.)

I know that it would be much better to try and explore the singles 3 match of Tezuka and Sanada in the nationals but since I am really unable to portray these two characters, I decided to use Shiraishi.

Because Shiraishi is such a calm and composed character I don’t think he will be having an emotional outburst, but I want to show him being affected so I extend this what if- this fan fiction is a bit of a ‘what if’ to my fan fiction- which as all fan fictions are, are what if scenes. But basically in this scene I’m taking his relationship with Ashita as a bit more far then what it was like in the original story (in the original story they just liked each other when they are in junior high school, but for this fan fiction presume that they were realizing that they love each other). The reason for this is to explain why Shiraishi might not be as composed as he really is. But this fan fiction’s main purpose it to explore the whole idea of Tezuka’s sacrifice and what his opponent might feel using this fan fiction scenario to show it.

I got a bit tired and fed up with links during my experience with them in putting up my fushigi yugi link, so my stories for a while will not be having links.

Final note: This is using the ideas in ‘sacrifice’ but it is not connected with my other fan fictions, this is a stand off story with the idea of ‘what if this happened instead of what happened in ‘sacrifice’’.

Word of warning: this story puts Tezuka’s actions in a rather negative light.

Disclaimer: I own nothing.

Photos could be mended but what about her heart? Shiraishi had carefully taped the ripped apart pieces together with the unchanged one as a guide, but the tear was still there.
Just as what he did would always be present even if they managed to reconcile. But he still rather have a ripped photo instead of only seeing this scene in his memory.
“Shiraishi, are you really alright?” Yuuji finally asked.
His friend has put the two photos in his bag and took out his tennis racquet, about to go and play the final deciding match.
They did not know what exactly had happened, but it was not hard to guess. Shiraishi had returned to their lodging after their meeting and grabbed his tennis racquet without saying one word of greeting to anyone before he went to practice madly in the nearby court. Their coach had to stop him by snatching the racquet away.
“Winning the nationals is the only thing I have left so I have to win!” had been Shiraishi’s protest.
“I will be.” Shiraishi said with a rather bitter smile. “I always manage when I play tennis.”
Ashita was right, he thought, he was already beginning to be more occupied with the game instead of thinking about yesterday. Maybe he really wasn’t meant to be her boy friend.
But it still hurt, and he now knew that it would continue to hurt even if Shitenhouji became the champion.

She stood out very easily as she was in one of her many yukata, but there was a difference from now and the numerous times that she watched his game: she was not smiling at him.
“Tanako?” Koharu and Yuuji echoed out in some surprise as their friend would have told them about her presence in Tokyo.
“Ashita…what are you doing here?” Shiraishi asked, as puzzled as the rest.
“I need to talk to you.” Was her simple reply. “Alone. Now.”
Watanabe quickly arranged this with what seemed to be light hearted teasing about youth, but some of the regulars could tell that he was rather worried.
“I came to Tokyo because I believed that we can work all this out,” Ashita began, her voice very cold as this was the only way she could keep her dignity. “But now I realized that I was wrong as I finally understand your choice: it wasn’t even about tennis. It was a decision between your team and me
“You choose your team…that is the most important thing to you.”
He couldn’t defend himself in any way as that was what he did, he broke up with her because if she was there, then he might choose to focus on her instead of devoting himself to tennis for the sake of his team.
Yet he clung onto the hope that he might be able to redeem himself once he achieved his dream of taking his team to the finals. The fact she still seemed to care for him encouraged him to continue this wistful thinking. (1)
A foolish belief as who would willingly be second best?
“So what is the point of holding onto what he once had?” upon saying this, she raised her hand to untie the ribbon that he had tied onto her hair on her birthday, the one where they spent together.
“Ashita, can you not give me another chance?” he pleaded, refusing to accept the dangling ribbon.
“Your first priority is your team, to win the nationals with them.” She said coldly as she let the ribbon fall to the ground. “I never demanded to be the very first thing in your life but being only a second thought is simply too much.”
“That is not true.” He protested, grabbing her by the wrist as she was turning away. “You are equally important too! This year has been so empty because you are not there…I feel these pain even when we won the Kansai regional.”
“I don’t think I believe you anymore.” she said bitterly, wrenching her hand out of his grasp. “How can I believe someone who dumped me just because my presence might distract him when I stopped demanding anything from him?”
Saying so, she took out her copy of the precious photo that he took almost every where with him since it lived in the same place with his tennis racquet.
“This is my proof.”
She tore the photo in two before she placed the now separated parts together inorder to rip it again.
“What we once had is like this photo.” She stated as she shoved the many pieces into his hand. “But do you know…I was beginning to think that I didn’t just like you when you broke up with me.”
“Tanako, my name is Tanako. Please remember that…Shiraishi-kun.” (2)

Like the regulars of the team and the members of the tennis club, Watanabe was watching the current match with a deep frown, but unlike the others, it was not caused so much by the actual result, but due to his worrying about the effect this would have on Shiraishi.
“I have a very bad feeling that this game is very dangerous for Shiraishi.” He commented. “I don’t really know why but I believe that something will be happening very soon.”
He was feeling very guilty because his interference of letting Tanako Ashita come to Tokyo seemed to have backfired.
What Shiraishi didn’t understand was that emotion was a living thing- his attempt of burying it could only be a temporary evasion. A burst would eventuate and the eruption would be much severe if there had been many other emotions.
In Shiraishi’s case, he did have many other hidden grievances that he hid.
Soon enough, the catalyst to unburying all this appeared: it was Tezuka’s injury.
Shiraishi managed to let the game be dragged on as he would return every single serve even if he was at the losing end of 0-40 or 40-0. He did this because he refused to just give a game away, especially when he was capable of holding on. (3)
“Forty all!” the umpire cried out even as Tezuka dropped his racquet due to his pain.
“TEZUKA-BUCHOU!” a loud scream appeared from Seigaku, while most other schools made some comment about the injury.
Shiraishi had a much more closer view then almost every one else since he was directly facing Tezuka. He could tell that the wrist was actually swollen, indicating that it had the potential of being much worse.
“You should get off court, Tezuka-kun.” Shiraishi stated with sincere concern. “That is a very serious injury.”
“Is that all you have to say?” Tezuka asked emotionlessly as he picked up his racquet again.
“Are you crazy? Do you not know what will happen if you continue?” Shiraishi almost felt like screaming, if this was happening to him then his coach would now be in the process of dragging him off, saying “Don’t be an idiot, Shiraishi. Beside, I’ve already forfeit the match for you so there is nothing you can do about it.”
“You are mistaken, Shiraishi-san, to think that our buchou will just give up before the very last point has been decided.” Momoshiro commented. (4)
“Tezuka-kun, I beg you to forfeit one last time.” Shiraishi pleaded. “I don’t want to play against someone with the knowledge that I might do great harm to them, but if you don’t forfeit then I will have to continue playing for my team.”
“Is that all your have to say?” Tezuka stated once again.
“If that is your resolution then don’t blame me for what I have to do.” Shiraishi whispered softly as he served.
He knew that Tezuka was naturally unable to return this serve because he was still in the process of recovering from his injury.
The mummer of disbelieve was to turn into hostility when some of Shiraishi’s serves forced Tezuka to drop his racquet partly due to the force he used, and partly because Tezuka’s injury weakened him greatly.
“But that is not his fault.” Kenya began indignantly due to the accusations from the Seigaku cheerleaders . “Shiraishi’s can’t just play with less strength…sensei?”
Watanabe got up from his seat without saying anything and walked to stand in front of the Seigaku regulars and club members. His expression did not seem particularly harsh in anyway, but his students could tell that he must be more then a bit angry in order to do this.
“How can you blame Shiriashi for what is happening to your buchou’s arm?” Watanabe asked very coldly. “Isn’t it natural that Shiraishi will not want to lose by preventing the game to be given to Tezkua and therefore tries to return each serve in the hope of scoring himself? It is not his fault that Shiraishi has a much better stamina then your buchou.
“You especially,” Watanabe said as he pointed to Kaidou, “Can not blame Shiraishi since what you do to your opponent is a similar thing, and unlike you- Shiraishi did not do this on purpose.
“Last of all, how is it our fault if Tezuka did not want to stop playing even though he knows the risk? His arm is getting worse because you guys are not stopping him. Why should my student have to suffer for his opponent’s problems?
“Beside, Tezuka is doing what he does in order to continue playing, do you think he will actually be happy if Shiraishi defaulted or deliberately let him win because of this?” (5)
Watanabe saw Shiriashi giving him a nod of gratitude before he resumed playing. The reason of his actions was partly due to the knowledge that the boy would be screaming himself if someone did not yell for him.
But he was actually truly angry at what was happening, and he would still be angry even if he was not personally involved in this match. What kind of example was this buchou setting up for his regulars? His actions were all but encouraging his team mates to play recklessly.
He supposed some allowances must be made since they were, at the most, only boys of fifteen years old. A very young age, although it was quite easy to forget this. An age where they usually all desired to excel in the thing that they chose, and in this case it was tennis.
Their coach, on the other hand, was different. No coach who truly cares for their students should allow this- to let their students risk injuring themselves permanently.
This was also part of their job! To prevent such dangers from happening!

In the end, Shiraishi was the one who lost, and the clapping for the winner was probably the loudest anyone had heard throughout the whole tournament, as well as being earned at Shiraishi’s expense.
Tezuka was lying on his side of the court with his right hand pressing his now rather swollen and limp left wrist while Shiraishi was half kneeling on the ground even though he was not physically injured.
Apart from these who knew him quite well, it was not easy to see that he was undergoing an emotionally crisis.
He never expected them to automatically win just because of his actions, but it was still very difficult for him to come to term with the knowledge that his dream would never come true.
Even worse was the fact that he felt he was to be blamed as he was the one who lose this deciding game.
The cheering were beginning to hurt in more then one way, especially the praises of how Tezuka deserved to win due to this sacrifice.
He should leave as soon as he could, but he seemed unable to even more, so he continued to hear these words being repeated over and over again.
Was his own sacrifices worth it? He couldn’t help but to question himself since what he wanted would not be his.
He might have had more fun…Ashita might be watching him now. At the very least she would not say that he never cared for her at all, to be accused of such a thing by someone so precious to him hurt greatly.
The worst part was that this was all his own fault- he was the one that forced himself to make this decision, he made a mistake by choosing in the first place as he finally realized that he could not be satisfied with having just one.
An understanding that came much too late as he now had neither.
He did not deny that this was all the result of his own folly, but nonetheless they were the sacrifices he did as he was the buchou.
So why were they all acting as if he never did such a thing? As if Tezuka was the only who did sacrifices for his team?
He was very tired…he tried to do what he believed to be the best for his team and the result simply hurts too much. He did not expect people to praise him for it at all, but seeing it being dismissed completely was too much.

Shiraishi’s words were spoken out very softly, but the tone immediately hushed the crowd. Anger was present, but so was sadness- showing that this was not just caused by his current lose.
“So I should lose just because of this?” he whispered brokenly. “If he should win just because of his sacrifices, then what about all that I did? Doesn’t playing this perfect tennis, which is the most boring thing in the world, for so long not mean anything?
“I never once complained about my actions because this is my duty by being the buchou. My team has to be the most important thing. Likewise my coach made this decision of letting me be the buchou since my second year even though he knew that this would not be a good thing for me.
“I don’t blame him anymore as I understand that he too, must put our team first.
“So why do you all think only he did sacrifices?” Shiraishi continued, “And why should I lose just because Tezuka wishes for Seigaku to be the champion? What make you think that I have a different goal? Why else would I want to win so obsessively? I did not do all that I did for fun, it was all because I have a dream of wanting Shitenhouji to win.
“Seigaku won because it is better then Shitenhouji in skills, but not because of your wish to win, as I wish for that so much too! So does my coach and all my team mates!”
Shiraishi was a skilled enough player and his school have performed very well in the last nationals so most of the audience has seen him before. They usually judged him to be someone quite good tempered and one who acted in a mature way.
An image that contrasted greatly with the boy who seemed to be on the verge of screaming and even crying.
His team mates’ shock clearly indicated that this was the first time their buchou behaved like this. Even the one who prophesised about the out burst was still surprised at the actual result- which was why he didn’t do anything.
Some one from Seigaku must have retorted something and the immediate reproach and apology from his own team mates indicated that it was not as wise thing to say. (6)
“Would you sacrifice almost all your enjoyment in tennis for your team for more then a whole year? Would you? And would you sacrifice the person you care for the most?” Shiraishi snapped back angrily, his voice finally raised to be qualified as a yell. “Sacrifices are not just limited to a physical injury! Don’t tell me that all I did was nothing! Especially making her go away…I care for her so much…I might even love her…but because of what I did she now think that I never cared for her…
“I know that I am the only one to be blamed for this,” he admitted, his voice now much calmer and he even prepared to stand up and walk to the net. “But no matter what, I did what I did for my team, so stop saying that he is the only one who made sacrifices. However wrong…however foolish I have been, my actions were still guided by what made him do this very same thing.”
When Shiraishi stood up, he was awarded with clapping as well, although there many who still did not understands. But those who did all clapped with great enthusiasm as they could realise how much it would hurt to do what Shiraishi did.
It was a particular loud clap that caused Watanabe to discover her- a much more difficult task then usual as she blended in with the rest quite easily due since she was wearing her school uniform.
“I think he does not need to lose in both cases.” Watanabe commented as he took something out from Shiraishi’s bag. “Children need guidance, and perhaps I can actually do what I intended.”

Ashita was deeply startled when he tapped her on the shoulder, since she was completely focused on watching Shiraishi. Her clenched hands were a further indication.
“It is not my fault that he lost.” Was the first thing she said to the coach of Shitenhouji.
Although she almost wished that this was not true, as it would show her that she was much more important. But she was not that selfish as she wanted him to win due to knowing how much this meant to him.
“Of course not. But this is.” Watanabe said, pointing to the court.
“It was that school adding insult to his injury!” Ashita immediately retorted angrily. “I’ll be angry too if I am him! First blaming him for blaming their buchou’s own problems and then suggesting that Kura…Shiraishi did not deserve to win! As if they are the only ones who want to win and…”
”Yes, he might not be doing this if he won but I doubt that he would be smiling as your are really precious to him, losing you really affected him greatly.” Saying so he placed the taped up photograph and the ribbon carefully wrapped in tissues into her hand. “Some times there are things of equal importance, but you don’t always know it when you should. Tanako-chan, is this not a good enough proof of how much he cares for you?”
At the sight of these treasures he had preserved so carefully she could only nod because she found herself unable to speak right now.
“Then go and tell him.” Watanabe said gently. “I think he will be able to accept losing if you are there beside him.”

(1) Another difference from my original fan fiction, as in the original story he actually doesn’t know that she still like him, which I think make more sense since he is only fourteen, if not fifteen.
(2) Basically in Japanese culture you rarely call some one by their first name unless you know them really really well and you usually have known them for a very long time (a bit like Inui and Yanagi). But I think you can call your boy and girl friend by their first name. So Shiraishi used to call Ashita by her first name as she was his girl friend, but now she is telling him that he doesn’t have the right to call her that and he should call her ‘Tanako’ as a normal friend or class mate would have to do.
(3) Just for those who doesn’t understand tennis, which I didn’t understand for ages. Say that they are at a situation of 40-0, where the 40 is scored by Tezuka. Basically all Tezuka have to do is to score one more time and the game will go to him, and then you start the whole thing again. But in Shiraishi’s case he have to score four times (I think, I am not very sure) so in some cases some people in his position will just give up the next ball as they might think it is not worth it, having to spend that much stamina in trying to score a game, which you might not even get, as your opponent just have to score one more time. This actually has been done- by one of the regulars in midoriyama when they played against Kaidou and Inui.
(4) This is a reference to what Momoshiro and Ryuzaki-sensei had said in the kantou regional, during Echizen’s match with Sanada. Sengoku was saying that Echizen should give up as otherwise he might be harmed- Momoshiro then told him that he is wrong, while Ryuzaki-sensei added that no one in Seigaku will give up before the game finishes.
(5) A totally random side note but this is my favorite part in the whole story: Watanabe’s speech.
(6) In regard to who said the really rude thing I leave it up to you to decide.

Final Author’s Note: I really wanted to show the following ideas in this fan fiction.

1) it is not the fault of Tezuka’s opponent that this is happening to him. (I must admit I made that mistake myself too.) But the fact that Tezuka can not last a very long match is his own fault because it is not wrong to drag a match out- whether on purpose (as Atobe tend to do) or as an accident (as what Shiraishi do in this story). Many players does this in order to study their opponent’s technique.

2) Seigaku is probably the last lot who can yell accusations at their opponents because it is Seigaku who didn’t stop Tezuka. Why should his opponent have to forfeit when there is nothing wrong with them? Why should the opponent have to forfeit because Tezuka can not play anymore? If there is something wrong with someone then that person must suffer for it himself, it is not fair for his opponent to suffer this.

3) Tezuka is doing what he did so he can continue playing anymore, would he actually want his opponent to forfeit and deliberately lose to him? I don’t think so, I believe he want his opponent to continue playing.

4) lastly, Tezuka is not the only buchou who performed sacrifices, a lot of the other buchou did too. I do not like how Tezuka is seen as the only one to perform sacrifices just because his sacrifices is more easy to see. I am not saying what Tezuka does is not admirable, but I am just saying, it is not the only thing, and it is not fair that he should win just because of that action.

5) my disappointment in Ryuzaki sensei as a coach, I really think she should not let them continue. I also really believe that unlike her, Watanabe would stop his students if they are in a similar position.

Additionally, this story also kind of show him realizing tennis is not enough, he can’t just be happy just because of tennis. I think he thought that he could manage and he believe that he should do this, but then he realize that you can not just make tennis into the only thing, that you need other things too, but this is more specific to this fan fiction.
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