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The Probability of Dating - Chapter 10

The Probability of Dating

Author:
Sinnatious

Summary: InuiRyo.  Inui calculates that there is only a 0.02% chance that Echizen Ryoma would be willing to date him.  Fortunately, data can be changed.

Rating: PGish.  Rating for shonen ai and innuendo.

Author’s Note:   Well, the previous chapter was posted without the world ending as suggested.  Hmm, this looks as though I've updated two days in a row, but it's really just a side effect from updating at midnight.  In any case, next chapter on Wednesday.  This chapter is as cliche a twist as it can get, but then, there aren't enough InuiRyo fics out there to have used up the popular cliches yet!  Yay!  \o/
 

_________________________

The Probability of Dating

Chapter 10

By Sinnatious
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Inui knew that after the stunt with the juice, it was only a matter of time before Fuji would pass comment. It was something he’d been avoiding for as long as possible, but as he stepped up his campaign it was inevitable that the more observant members of the team would notice. 
 
It wasn’t that he didn’t try to avoid the conversation. Conversations with Fuji were dangerous, after all – the data gatherer always found himself giving away far more information than what he received in return. He was currently assisting Tezuka in deciding the line-up for the upcoming intra-school ranking match – a tradition they’d introduced to the high school – so had been able to put it off for a number of days. But he was finally caught outside of the clubhouse when he returned to pick up his gear.
 
“It’s really very interesting,” the cheerful voice said behind him.
 
The data-gatherer froze, but quickly gathered his composure to turn and face his classmate. “Oh?”
 
“Your little project. I didn’t expect to come across someone else who enjoys the chase so much.”
 
Inui bristled briefly at the insinuation. “I am playing for keeps.” Even if he didn’t remember exactly when he’d decided that. Wasn’t this supposed to just be a step in his social development?
 
"I didn't really think Echizen was at all fond of you. I'm surprised you're going to take the chance," Fuji said.
 
"He's not. But data can be changed."
 
"So that’s the point of your crusade? How's it going?"
 
He didn't see the point in being vague with Fuji. "My odds have increased to 23 percent."
 
"That high? Saa, you have been doing good work."
 
It was an astronomically impressive increase, one that he was ridiculously proud of, but Inui still wasn't satisfied with the notion that his chance of success with Echizen was still among the lowest of the regulars. If he were slightly more paranoid, he'd be worried about one of his teammates beating him to it. As it stood it was getting difficult to contain his jealousy towards Tezuka, Fuji and Momoshiro, who all possessed much higher percentages. 
 
Still, 23 percent wasn’t bad. It wasn’t bad at all. And there was the rather sizeable consolation that the Ryuuzaki girl’s odds had dropped to an insignificant two percent. His recent investigations had yielded an 80 percent chance that Ryoma's preferences did not lay with that particular team, even if the freshman hadn't realised it himself yet.
 
"Inui?" Fuji prodded.
 
He snapped out of his mental calculations, realising that Fuji asked a question and he had been so absorbed in his thoughts that he didn't even hear it. "I'm sorry, Fuji, what did you say again?"
 
"I was asking what you planned to do next."
 
"Oh... nothing new for a few more days at least. I am content with this rate of progression."
 
A complete lie, but he was willing to be patient so as not to destroy his efforts with a premature confession. The juice seemed to have at least set Echizen thinking – if the considering looks the freshman kept giving him weren’t being misinterpreted - but it was necessary to give the idea some time to sink in. He gauged that the safest course of action was to wait for a special event to propel things forward again, at a time when such a confession could be expected. It was too long until Christmas Eve and he’d already missed Valentines Day – his best bet was the approaching festival.
 
"But aren't you worried that someone might beat you to it?"
 
Of course he was worried, but he'd been focusing his attention on Echizen rather than wasting precious time gathering data on potential competition. "Are you suggesting there are others to be worried about?"
 
Fuji just smiled. “Oh, you know… There’s that festival coming up in three weeks. I don’t have anyone to go with yet. Do you happen to have any suggestions?”
 
Inui’s pen slipped through his fingers. 
 
It was a worst-case scenario. 
 
“Excuse me,” he mumbled, bending down to retrieve the pen. His mind was racing through countless new figures and scenarios. How could he have been so stupid?
 
Fuji had a reputation. Girl, boy, it didn’t matter – his success rate was astounding. He could swap between charm and intimidation as easily as flicking a light switch. His exotic eye colour, good looks, athleticism and high grades made him an attractive prospect for almost anyone – for a fling if not a serious relationship. He’d been worried about Fuji finding out about his plans because of interference, but never did he imagine that his classmate would actually seek to steal Echizen away from him.
 
Fuji smiled serenely. “I already have someone in mind, of course. You know, I’ve never really had an opponent before. I wonder which one he’ll prefer.” Which ‘he’ the prodigy was referring to did not need to be explicitly stated.
 
Inui mentally adjusted Fuji’s percentage, and then winced at the ground he had to make up. He'd originally considered Momoshiro to be his biggest threat, but the introduction of Tachibana's sister as a variable had greatly allayed his concerns there.
 
“Fuji, why-”
 
“Actually, excuse me, I think I see him now,” his classmate said merrily, and jogged to catch up with the freshman who was just leaving.
 
Echizen stopped and eyeballed his senpai warily. Inui very nearly ran after them, but he had no means of countering Fuji’s methods – indeed, anything he tried might make matters worse. It was such a delicate situation already that any disruption to the fragile equilibrium could so easily destroy all of the progress he’d made so far.
 
He stared at his notebook, looking at the letters and numbers without actually reading them while Fuji greeted the oblivious first-year. “Echizen. You’re looking well today.”
 
“Fuji-senpai. What do you want?”
 
“I was planning on going to the street courts to meet up with Yuuta, but he pulled out. I need a hitting partner. Would you like to join me instead?”
 
Tennis. It was so much worse than he could have imagined.
 
“Depends. Are you going to play seriously?”
 
“How does a one-set match with no tie-break sound?”
 
Echizen glanced around. He was probably looking for Tezuka to make sure he didn’t see, given his disapproval of unofficial matches. “…Okay, I guess.”
 
It was one approach Inui couldn’t take. He simply couldn’t use tennis – at least, not in the traditional sense – to get closer to Echizen. It made things a great deal more difficult, because tennis ranked as one of the most important elements of Echizen’s life. But his particular style of tennis wasn’t one that the prodigious freshman enjoyed playing against – something which Inui had been studiously avoiding reminding his target of. The sad truth was, his whole campaign would have been a great deal easier if he favoured a different play style – training together was an excellent bonding activity, and he could have possibly even fashioned himself into a worthy rival. Something that Fuji didn’t even need to work at, as Echizen already acknowledged him as a worthwhile opponent.
 
“Oh. Inui-senpai.” Echizen stopped a few paces away, Fuji at his side. “We were going to go play some tennis at the street courts.” He waited a beat. 
 
His throat felt dry. “…I see. Have good time, then.”
 
Echizen gave him an odd look that Inui couldn’t categorise, and the pair walked towards the school gates. Fuji gave him a winning smile over his shoulder. It felt as though his feet were rooted on the spot.
 
23 percent. To think that not even an hour ago, he’d considered it an achievement, a figure in comfortable excess of his original estimations. Now it felt like a lead weight around his neck, a signifier of how much further he had to go in an impossibly short period of time. 
 
He couldn’t let it happen. But what could he do?
 
The data never lied.

Comments

( 19 comments — Leave a comment )
gayroadtrip
Mar. 2nd, 2009 11:19 am (UTC)
Aww Fuji, why you gotta be so evil? ♥
sinnatious
Mar. 2nd, 2009 11:38 am (UTC)
True as I might, I could find a way to have Nanjiroh or Yukimura take his place? :P
gayroadtrip
Mar. 2nd, 2009 11:40 am (UTC)
...no, Fuji's good. :')
jade_peace
Mar. 2nd, 2009 12:18 pm (UTC)
EVIL EVIL FUJI O_O


“Oh. Inui-senpai.” Echizen stopped a few paces away, Fuji at his side. “We were going to go play some tennis at the street courts.” He waited a beat.

His throat felt dry. “…I see. Have good time, then.”


LOL INUI.

♥♥♥
ii_crack
Mar. 2nd, 2009 12:35 pm (UTC)


(;___;)

edit: Tennis. It was so much worse than he could have imagined. :D

Edited at 2009-03-02 12:36 pm (UTC)
sinnatious
Mar. 2nd, 2009 12:43 pm (UTC)
:O You just described the entire fic in picture form!

It's true what they say, pictures being worth 1,000 words....
(Anonymous)
Mar. 2nd, 2009 01:13 pm (UTC)
Purple Crow
I have the sudden urge to have Tezuka interrupt Inui's chase and get Ryoma for himself! (He does have higher odds. XD) But that's just my OTP messing around.

Awww~ Inui is playing for keeps. And he's jealous!!! Even if he puts it in such a statistical data-ish way. Fuji's evil, so evil. <3 Fuji!!!!

CAN'T INUI TELL THAT RYOMA WAS INVITING HIM ALONG?
sinnatious
Mar. 2nd, 2009 01:36 pm (UTC)
Re: Purple Crow
You have no idea how powerful the urge to have the OTP just take over was. Wait, maybe you do. ♥

IT'S INUI. WHAT DO YOU THINK? XDDD

agentlerain
Mar. 2nd, 2009 02:07 pm (UTC)
You were right about the twist, but I think you pulled it off well. After all, it's done subtly enough that it's not bad. BUT I STILL *___* AT THE SCENE. Because I am a sucker for the cliched. Only when it's done right by good writers though. :D

Fuji is making it so obvious too. I secretly think he's doing it just to see how Inui reacts. He's not so interested in Ryoma, because he hasn't shown much interest in him until the whole confrontation. :| He really does well at the evil-bastard package. I can see why everyone likes to do that to his character.

I ♥ the last sentence. Because Inui has clearly forgotten that when it comes to Ryoma, the data is always changed. But it makes me :3 at him for forgetting and being despondent, thinking about his data again, instead of seeing Ryoma's backward look.

By the way, HOW ARE YOU? I haven't heard much about how you are besides fic slogging. This data needs to be changed. :| :|
sinnatious
Mar. 3rd, 2009 11:07 am (UTC)
I confess to having a secret love of the cliche as well. And Fuji makes a convenient villain! As we all know, I am a sucker for convenient villains. At least it's a change from Nanjiroh and Yukimura? :D

Oh? But I don't normally make much in the way of irl posts... I must protect the data!
agentlerain
Mar. 4th, 2009 02:58 pm (UTC)
I'm quite happy to read any character as a evil villian, there's something about your writing that persuades me. :D But Nanjiroh! ;___; Your character is forever stained to me now. After DOER, I saw you in a different light, and then the Rinko Mystery just cemented it. ;__; Yukimuri is asking for it. :P

Then I must follow in the ways of Inui and stalk slowly extract the data from you~
pat_ace87
Mar. 2nd, 2009 02:08 pm (UTC)
NO FUUJIIIII O_O!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Sure Fuji's sadistic, but...but...that's just plain ole mean and towards one of his own teamates O_O!!!!!! He can't be THAT mean...maybe he's trying to help Inui...in his own ...sadistic way...?...FFUUUJJJIIIIIII XXXXXXXXXXXOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
(Anonymous)
Mar. 2nd, 2009 03:40 pm (UTC)
SparklyFish
Evil Fuji. *w*

Then again, most of us wouldn't like to have Fuji any other way, right?

The way he [or Ryoma, Tezuka, and other selected players] manages to upset Inui's data with just a single action amuses me.

And awww jealous!Inui :3
sinnatious
Mar. 3rd, 2009 11:07 am (UTC)
Re: SparklyFish
It is our favourite kind of Fuji, to be sure. :3
kaorismash
Mar. 3rd, 2009 11:45 am (UTC)
D8

YOU JUST DESTROYED THE MUTUAL UNDERSTANDING FUJI AND I HAD TOGETHER.
sinnatious
Mar. 3rd, 2009 12:06 pm (UTC)
XDDDD

BUT I DIDN'T THINK YOU WERE ROOTING FOR THE INUIRYO?

I'm sorry, it had to be Fuji. There was a good reason.
kaorismash
Mar. 4th, 2009 11:32 am (UTC)
NOT REALLY, BUT WHAT DOES THAT HAVE TO DO WITH FUJI? :|

Ahaha. Why you apologizing. :P I shall just have to, idk. Go and think of HARMLESS< INNOCENT FUJI and factor him into, something, idk. :|
sinnatious
Mar. 4th, 2009 11:39 am (UTC)
BECAUSE I HAVE LONG SUSPECTED THAT YOUR DISLIKE OF FUJI STEMMED PREDOMINANTLY FROM HIS CONSISTENTLY GETTING IN THE WAY OF THE TEZRYO? /:) At least he's not omniscient!Fuji here?
kaorismash
Mar. 4th, 2009 12:02 pm (UTC)
EVEN I DO NOT KNOW WHERE IT CAME FROM.

BUT YEAH, THAT DOES FACTOR INTO IT A LOT. JUST NOT ENTIRELY. I DON'T THINK. UM.

A RELIIIEF. *_*
( 19 comments — Leave a comment )