You Make Me Feel Great [Hagita x Azusa]

Hagita and Azusa have denied their feelings for each other for too long. Can they right the wrongs they have committed to each other? All characters belong to Takano Ichigo and the cover photo belongs to the original taker. I only own the plot.

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1. You Make Me Feel Great

Hagita never felt that he fit in with Suwa and the other boys in his grade. He was bookish, smart, and hated the very idea of sports. He was nothing like them, and it always surprised him when he went from one day to the next with Suwa remaining his best friend. But, that didn't change how he saw himself.

When Hagita started High School, that's when his self image really began to crumble. He watched as the other boys grew more athletic and more good looking, especially to the girls in their grade. Hagita just stayed the same, with his flat hair, emotionless face, and nerdy glasses. Needless to say, when all of the other boys had a girlfriend, he was alone.

It surprised Hagita when Suwa stayed single as well, instead choosing to befriend several girls from their grade. Suwa introduced Hagita to them by their first names; Takako, Naho, and Azusa. Hagita held a great distaste for the first two almost instantly. Takako was rude and extremely boyish, and didn't seem to like him very much. Naho on the other hand, was much too timid and shy. She apologized for things she didn't do and let herself be easily persuaded by bullies. Azusa was different.

As soon as Hagita saw her, he was captivated. Her eyes, her smile, her laugh, her intelligence... To him, everything about her was perfect and left him spellbound. He had wanted to ask her out right then and there, but such was improper to him. Besides, Hagita knew Azusa would not return his feelings and would instead develop a love for Suwa. Who wouldn't? He was perfect in every way, just like Azusa was. Whenever Azusa sent a compliment his way his heart would flutter and he felt as if he could conquer the world. Azusa made him feel great, powerful even. But, he knew she was just being kind.

Hagita grew bitter and denied having feelings for anyone when he was asked, especially Azusa. His feelings of worthlessness and self-hatred grew until they consumed him almost entirely, and they could only be quenched when he was in Azusa's presence. Hagita learned to grow fond of Takako and Naho, but it didn't heal his aching heart as he saw Azusa and Suwa's friendship grow. The others constantly teased the two of them, telling them that they should go out. Hagita tuned them out every time, not realizing that Azusa would cast a longing glance his way during all of these conversations. It wasn't until the end of their tenth year that Suwa, Naho, and Takako realized the two saw each other in more than a friendly way.

It started with simple things, like Azusa inviting Hagita to study with her after school, or Hagita purposely sitting at the end of the lunch table so Azusa would have no other choice but to sit between him and Takako. Their constant bickering and teasing reminded everyone of an old married couple. But whenever he was asked, Hagita still denied his feelings. In his eyes, Azusa only saw Suwa, and he was still hideous. It angered him though, to see Suwa's feelings for Naho. He had confided in him over telephone, telling him all about it. Hagita had thrown the phone in a fit of rage. Suwa, the perfect boy, Azusa's love, did not return her affection. Even of Hagita loved her, he wanted her to be happy. He tried to fight back the fluttering in his chest, and the confidence he felt when he was around her. He was Hagita; the bookish loser no one wanted. He wouldn't let his feelings change him.

Their freshmen year came and went and soon they were juniors. Hagita's feelings hadn't changed over the summer and it was quite clear to him that Azusa's hadn't either. She fawned over Suwa, cheering him on at every single practice, game, and even when he just scrimmaged by himself in the courtyard. She always saw something in Suwa that was praiseworthy. But whenever Azusa would look at Hagita, all he could see in her eyes was burning hatred and disgust. It hurt him, but he still denied his feelings.

The entrance of Kakeru Naruse into their lives brought another shift of events. Everyone knew he loved Naho except for her. It was frustrating, watching the two of them interact and not being able to realize each other;s feelings. The letters they received from their future selves weren't nearly as detailed as Naho's was, but they held the same amount of regret. Kakeru changed all of them, brought them closer together. The letters from their future selves that helped them save Kakeru shook them to the very core. Hagita had comforted a crying Azusa on many occasions, thrilled that she was coming to him. He felt guilty, but satisfied at the same time.

Kakeru was saved, and he and Naho got together. Hagita once again lived in fear that Suwa would take his precious Azusa from him. Still, he denied his feelings and refused to let himself be made a fool by confessing to her. Their junior year drew to a close, and Hagita felt hopeless. He had one year, and one year only to make the girl he loved realize that he felt as such.

Hagita was blind. He didn't realize that Azusa had similar feelings and fears as he did. She saw him as wonderful and perfect, and could've sworn he got a little bit happier every time he was around Takako. She felt ridiculous of course, knowing there was no way Takako would return his feelings anyways, but it hurt her to know that Hagita saw her as a mere verbal punching bag. Suwa, Naho, Takako, and now Kakeru encouraging their relationship seemed like a sick joke to her. So, Hagita and Azusa remained in silence, denying their feelings and just barely staying friends.

Summer was torture for their friends as they shared more couple like moments and continued to deny what they truly felt. Plots to bring them together were planned, and crashed and burned each time they attempted to execute them. They watched in fear as their small fights became more bitter and resentful, growing more and more serious as the summer drew on.

Hagita would run home in tears after a fight with Azusa and would disappear for hours in his room. He would scream and cry out in frustration, punching walls or curling up on his bed. He hated himself for the things he said to her. He was cruel and vicious, tearing her self esteem apart bit by bit. And it was all because he was just too scared to tell her he loved her.

One day, he didn't make it all the way home. He collapsed halfway there, falling to his knees and sobbing so hard his entire body shook. Today, he had been so horrible he'd made Azusa burst into tears. Suwa and Kakeru were enraged and told him to leave and never come back. He looked at Azusa in horror as she sobbed into Takako's arms, shaking. Hagita had never run so fast in his life. Now he was here, sobbing on his knees in the all too familiar pathway lined with cherry trees that they walked through together. The blossoms had just started to open, and the path was lined with them.

Hagita heard someone call his name and he jerked his head up, breathing shakily. Azusa stood in the middle of the pathway, but Hagita almost took her for Naho because for how timid she appeared. Her eyes were still red and puffy from crying, causing a pang in his chest. He looked away again, hot tears spilling down his cheeks. She called his name again her voice stronger this time, but it still sounded like a question.

"Go away!" Hagita snapped, getting to his feet and turning to her angrily. Azusa backed away quickly, and Hagita noticed the slight tremble in her body. He looked heavenward, gritting his teeth as guilt burned brightly in his chest. Hagita gasped and bit his lip sharply to hold back tears as Azusa approached him, hesitating slightly before wrapping her arms around him in a hug.

"No. You can't make me go anywhere. Tell me what's wrong with you!" Azusa said firmly, her eyes narrowing as she looked up at him. Hagita was horrified, his eyes widening as he stumbled over his words and tried to figure out what he could say. Azusa rested a hand on his cheek, her eyes filled with concern, and he started to sob again, completely shattering the walls of bitterness and resentment he had built for himself. Azusa's lip trembled and she vainly trying to brush away his tears. Her own eyes began to glisten and she buried her face in his chest, making him go rigid.

"It's my fault, isn't it? I did something to you. That's why you hate me so much and always fight with me..." Azusa's voice trailed off and she pushed herself away from Hagita, wiping her eyes and sighing. His arms remained limp at his sides as she began to walk away, hugging herself to keep from shaking.

"It's not your fault!" Hagita shouted after her, suddenly able to find his voice. Azusa stopped, but she refused to turn around. Hagita swallowed hard, continuing. "It's my fault, Azusa." This was it. There was no turning back now that he'd begun. "I'm... I'm in love with you. I fell in love with you as soon as I met you. You're so perfect, and I couldn't help but feel that I was nothing. I hid my feelings from you because I thought you were..." he hesitated for a moment. "I thought you were in love with someone else. I hated myself. I wanted you to be happy, and I was letting my feelings get in the way." Hagita bit his lip and fought back more tears before continuing.

"I didn't tell you, and it made me a bitter and angry person. I hurt you, and I'm sorry," Hagita finished, closing his eyes and clenching his fists, bracing himself for the worst. He heard a soft giggle, which turned into a chuckle. Soon, Azusa had burst into laughter, doubling over and clutching her stomach. Hagita cracked one eye open and gaped at her in shock.

"Y-You don't hate me?" he stammered, and Azusa replied with a grin and a shake of her head. Hagita's heart pounded as she stepped closer to him, their eyes locking. "No way! I've been waiting to hear that from you for so long!" Azusa cheered, tackling Hagita in another hug and planting a big kiss on his lips. His breathing hitched in surprise and he stared at her for a moment before allowing his eyes to flutter closed. Hagita hesitantly returned the kiss, wrapping his arms around Azusa's slender waist and pulling her closer. The desperation and anguish he'd felt for the past two years of their friendship made him grip her tighter and kiss her more passionately, his arms shaking slightly.

Azusa's knees felt weak as Hagita returned her kiss with eagerness. She tangled her fingers in his hair, pulling his lanky frame down so she could kiss him more easily. She'd heard that when someone truly loved you, there would be fireworks and church bells every time you kissed. Azusa got just that. Eventually they had to part for the sake of air, much to their displeasure. Hagita smiled softly at Azusa, lifting her chin slightly and kissing her nose.

"I love you, Azu", Hagita murmured shyly, using her nickname as a slight blush formed on his cheeks. Azusa giggled and nuzzled into his chest. "I love you too, Hagita."

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