First Photographs [Kasamatsu Yukio]
Kasamatsu could barely keep his eyes focused on the large movie screen displayed before him, most of his focus going towards fighting the heated blush threatening to devour his face. Though his upper body was as stiff as stone, his lower body was shaking almost violently and he was quickly becoming a vibrating mess in his seat. A shrill screech from the overhead speakers resonated within the theater and Kasamatsu jumped in his chair. Though, it wasn’t from the movie being played. No, he had jumped because, at that exact moment, [Name] had decided to quickly grip at his arm, pulling it towards her body in her own shaking fear. Glancing over at her, Kasamatsu could see her wide, worried eyes transfixed on the movie screen as if she were trapped in a spell. Her lips were pressed in a thin line and her knuckles had started to turn white from how hard she was gripping him. He could feel the edges of her nails prodding at his skin through the sleeves of his team jacket.
“Please don’t go in there,” she weakly whispered to herself, urging the movie’s main actress to stay away.
Turning his attention back to the movie screen, Kasamatsu tried hard to remember why he had suggested a movie date in the first place. He had overheard a few of his classmates talking about the newest horror film out in theaters and couldn’t help but eavesdrop when they mentioned taking their own girlfriends to the movie. Upon hearing how their girls had been clinging to them the entire time, Kasamatsu decided that he would give it a try. It’s not like he had any better ideas anyway. As soon as basketball practice had ended that day, he promptly picked her up from her home and walked with her to the theaters.
Kasamatsu gave off the small noise upon feeling [Name] lace her fingers with his own in a desperate attempt to calm herself. The plan had worked splendidly, yielding the exact results Kasamatsu had hoped for: his girlfriend was definitely a quaking mess in need of his comfort. However, the poor Kaijou captain had neglected to add his own nervous habit into the mix when thinking about the plan. Now that it was actually in action, Kasamatsu could do nothing but freeze whenever her small hands brushed up against him. He had also become a quaking mess, but it wasn’t due to the blood and gore that were artistically displayed on the screen.
“K-Kasamatsu-kun,” [Name] whispered, turning in her seat so she could face him better.
Looking down at her from the corner of his vision, Kasamatsu noticed how her eyes danced back and forth between his face and the screen. He turned his upper body as well, giving her his full attention. Shakily, [Name] opened her mouth to speak, but just as she was about to talk the sound of a motor revving up and an evil cackle boomed throughout the theater. [Name] screamed instead, causing a chain reaction as multiple other people in the audience screamed as well. Feeling an embarrassed flush rise to her cheeks, [Name] hid her face in Kasamatsu’s shoulder and squeezed her eyes shut. Kasamatsu stiffened at the contact. He hoped she wouldn’t be able to hear his heart practically beating through his ribcage.
He felt bad for dragging [Name] to this type of movie, but he hadn’t known she would react this way. Feeling a blush worm its way onto his face, he leaned a bit closer to her. “W-We can leave n-now… If you want,” he whispered, his larger hand squeezing hers.
Receiving a quick nod from the first year, Kasamatsu gathered up the drinks they had purchased for the movie before standing from his seat. Luckily the pair had decided to sit in the back of the theater, upon [Name]’s request, closer to the doors. She had probably seen this sort of outcome being the result of their movie date and didn’t want to bother the other moviegoers when they would inevitably leave during the middle of the show.
“Let’s go,” Kasamatsu grunted as he felt [Name] curl her arm around his.
Making their way out of the dark room, Kasamatsu dumped their drinks into a rubbish bin near the doorway before leading [Name] to the main lobby of the theaters. The lobby was much more brightly illuminated than the room they had just been in and Kasamatsu found himself squinting a bit as they walked through it. There were still crowds of people in the movie theater lobby, some of them hanging around and chatting about movies they had just finished, others standing in line as they waited to order their snacks, and even more standing idly around as they waited for their own movie to start. Kasamatsu grimaced as he tried to make his way through the crowd. Eventually, the mass of people had become so thick that [Name] had to relinquish her hold on his arm and settle for latching her hand to his, making it easier for them to weave through.
“A-Ah, Kasamatsu-kun, wait!”
[Name] called out after her boyfriend when, at one point in their journey towards the front door, their hands had separated to allow passing children run by. Before she knew it, a small wave of people had taken that break as their cue to walk in front of the girl, causing her to lose sight of Kasamatsu altogether. Feeling a slight panic, [Name] tried to walk around the crowd and see if she could find the older teen, but she only ended up getting more lost within the sea of people. After a minute, she decided to walk in a straight line. Eventually she would hit a wall and she could work her way towards the exit where the two would hopefully meet up.
“Whoa, so old school,” she breathed out once she had made her way passed the crowd and to the opposite wall.
Standing before her was an old photo booth; the kind that only took black and white pictures and would print them out four at a time. She found herself fascinated by the slightly old piece of technology, its weathered corners and vintage style intriguing her. The curtain that separated the inside of the booth from the outside theater surrounding it was a dingy red color, stained from years of use and torn at the edges. Reaching a hand out, she felt the rough fabric between her fingers and tugged on it slightly. It felt loose and [Name] was sure she could tear the entire thing off with one strong tug.
“There you are.” A sudden hand clapped down on her shoulder and [Name] had to fight the urge to scream. Looking up at her sudden companion, she sighed mentally in relief when she saw Kasamatsu standing before her with a worried expression etched in his face. He jerked his head in the opposite direction, eyes glancing between hers and the exit. “Come on, the door’s this way.”
“Wait, can we do this first?”
“E-Eh?” Kasamatsu looked at the old photo booth that stood tall behind [Name]. It had definitely seen some better days and looked like it was about ready to shut down any minute. “R-Really? D-Do we have to?”
“Please? Oh, please, please, please,” [Name] begged, clasping her hands together in front of her face as a small grin broke out onto her features. “Besides, you owe me for taking me to such a scary movie. I nearly died in that theater. A few pictures isn’t going to hurt.”
Kasamatsu frowned slightly, but nodded nonetheless, earning himself an excited squeal as [Name] dragged him into the booth after her. It was quite small in there and the third year felt the heat of a blush creep onto his face as he was forced to stand extra close to the girl in order to get within the cameras sights. After inserting money into the machine, [Name] turned towards the taller male and poked him in the cheek.
“Make sure you smile, okay?”
Kasamatsu nodded and the pair turned forward to face the camera. [Name] gave her best grin, her smile going wide and reaching up to her eyes as she held onto Kasamatsu’s arm. She leaned closer to him and he bent down a bit to get closer to her, his own barely present smile on his face. His brows, however, were furrowed in slight confusion and annoyance. He hoped this ordeal would end quickly.
The machine clicked and a bright flash blinded the couple for a second, leaving black and white spots in their vision. It started counting down again and [Name] made quick work of getting into another pose. Kasamatsu mentally sighed, staying in the same position as before. Another click and another flash. They were halfway done.
Suddenly, Kasamatsu could feel the front of his basketball jacket being forcefully tugged downward. He followed suit, not wanting his jacket to be damaged and barely registering another flash of the camera as he stared at the mischievous grin plastered on [Name]’s face.
“Last picture,” she said, tugging the tall male even closer.
Kasamatsu’s eyes widened and his face and ears turned red as [Name] pulled him into a kiss, her own eyes shut in merriment. As their lips locked, Kasamatsu heard the shutter of a camera and saw the bright light of the flash go off in the corner of his eye. The screen started to play a short animation as it printed their pictures.
“You could at least kiss me back,” [Name] mumbled against his lips before pulling away with a cheeky grin. She poked his cheek once again before stooping low to pick up the photos the machine had just deposited through a slot. There were two sets, one for her and one for him. “Oh well, maybe next time.”
Giving him his set of photos and pushing the still frozen in shock male out of the booth, [Name] latched her hand into his and led him towards the exit of the theaters. By now the crowd had thinned out significantly and they both had an easier time walking passed the strangers. As they walked and Kasamatsu recovered from his embarrassed daze, he couldn’t help but notice that [Name] had begun fiddling with her cell phone.
“W-What are you doing?” He asked as he watched her remove the clear case from around her phone.
“I want to put the photographs in my phone case,” she answered, placing the photos face down in the case before snapping it back into place against her phone. She showed it to him, grinning. “Now I can see you even whenever I want to.”
Kasamatsu sputtered as he looked at the embarrassing photos displayed proudly in her phone. He started to complain, telling her how she could’ve chosen better pictures, but she only responded by childishly sticking her tongue out. Red in the face, he declared that he would steal her phone later and destroy the evidence before anyone else could see it.
They both knew he wouldn’t dare.
“Eh?! Hey, [Name], is this you and bushy brows?!”
Said girl paused her conversation with Kawahara midsentence as she looked over to Kagami. The obnoxiously loud redhead had her cellphone in his hands, pointing accusingly at the photos she had displayed in her case.
“What? No way, [Name]-chan and Knee-Socks-senpai?” Koganei asked as he too went to go look at the photographs on her phone. “Wow, I didn’t know you’d display something so risqué on your phone, [Name]-chan.”
“H-Hey, wait,” [Name] stuttered, blushing at the odd nicknames her friends were giving her boyfriend. She was starting to regret visiting Seirin’s basketball practice as the rest of boys and Riko cooed and wolf whistled at the pictures. Her plan of embarrassing Kasamatsu with the pictures had backfired and now she was the one slowly regretting ever stepping foot in that booth. [Name] could only hang her head and cover her cheeks in embarrassment at the treatment she now received.
Somewhere in Kaijou, Kasamatsu was sneezing.