Chapter 1:


The Significance of Love

A young man woke up at 6 a.m. sharp. What woke him up was his alarm clock, which he shut down after getting off of the bed. After showering and putting his school clothes on, he got downstairs for breakfast.

In a family where money is everything and has control over all, Ryuji Fujimiya, the heir of the Fujimiya Conglomerate and unique son of Tatsuki Fujimiya, has been leading a life full of emptiness and expectations ever since he can remember.

“ I'm off!”

“ Wait up!”

“ Yes, dad!” The young man turned backward as his dear father had stopped him from leaving, wondering what he wanted from him.

“ Don't forget to go pick up your fiancé!”

“ You're the heir of the Fujimiya Family and you have responsibilities. Don't you ever forget that!”

“ Yeah! Yeah! I'm off!” He uttered, being very annoyed. As he was leaving, he got interpellated by his father once more.

“ Wait!”

“ What now?” He asked, extremely irritated.

“ Wait for the driver to drive you to school?!” He uttered in an authoritative tone.

“ It isn't necessary? I can take the bus like anybody else”.

Ever since he was a young boy, Ryuji had always had everything given to him. He wasn’t allowed to do anything without his father’s approval or have friends that weren’t of less social status than him. That’s how he spent most of his life, under his father’s power and dominance.

“ You're not just anybody. You're the heir of the Fujimiya Family and my son. You can't behave like the other children of your age. Choose your friends wisely. I'm counting on you! You don't want to disappoint me, are you?” He concluded his phrase.

“ I'll do as you ask. I'll wait for the driver!” Ryuji nodded obediently to his father and he went outside to wait for the driver afterward.

“ Good boy! I'm so proud of you”.

In the car:

(Hello! My name's Ryuji Fujimiya. I'm 15 yrs old, and I'm attending Felicitae High. I'm in my freshman year of high school. Furthermore, I'm from a wealthy family, and I’m engaged to Sasaki Sono. I have friends, but sometimes, I can't say I have. Those people are all from wealthy families. They're not my friends because they want to. They have no other choice. For me, those people are strangers. But I have a normal friend. He's the only one I can let myself call a friend. On the surface, I'm an obedient son who always does what his father asks of him, but in reality, I'm a coward who doesn't dare to disappoint his dad).

“ We've arrived, sir! Time to get off!” The chauffeur parked the car.

This is the family chauffeur, Thomas Albertini. He’s been at the Fujimiya family’s service for more than ten years and is the personal chauffeur appointed by Tatsuki Fujimiya for his son. He’s also the personal assistant of the latter.

“ Thanks for driving me to school, but please, don't call me, sir? That embarrassed me”.

“ What should I call you then?”

“ Call me, Ryuji!”

“ I cannot do that, sir!”

“ Why not?”

“ Because you're my master, as is your dad”. He answered promptly.

“ Shut up! I'm no master. I'm a person; a normal person. Why can't I be like anybody else?” Ryuji weeps.

“ I have enough of this. Everyone treats me kindly because I'm the son of Tatsuki Fujimiya. Everyone, even you. Fortunately for me, I have one person who truly cares about me."

“ Who are you talking about, sir, if I may ask?” Asked the chauffeur out of sheer curiosity.

“ It's none of your damn business. And one more thing, I don't want you to come to pick me up after school.” He shouted.

“ I'm sorry, sir! I cannot grant your request. I can't disobey your father's orders.” He uttered sadly.

“ What about me? Don't I count? Aren’t my feelings important to you?” He asked.

“ Forgive me, sir! Have a marvelous day at school, sir? I'll be here at 2:33 P.m. to pick you up. Don't be late?”

Ryuji gets out of the car, angered that his one request couldn’t be granted. Like every morning, Ryuji gets all the attention of the school staff and the students. Every time he hears their salutations, he feels sick, as none of it is directly addressed to him.

“ Hello, Fujimiya San!” A female student named Alice Nam greeted him respectfully.

“ Hello to you too!” He grinned warmly.

“ Good morning, Fujimiya Senpai!” A female student named Andy Bloom was the next to greet him.

“ Hello, Andy Chan!”

(They're all so annoying. They're so nice to me because of my father. They don't care about me. Not only that, but they're all so hypocritical. It makes me sick).

“ Ryuji! Ryuji! Good morning!”

Ryuji heard a warm and kind-hearted voice running toward him. From the silhouette, he was very happy as his one true source of joy had turned up and his name is Anthony Flower. He’s Ryuji's one true friend and is from a middle-class family.

“ Good morning to you too, Anthony!” He greeted his friend with a warm smile.

“ You're ready for class? It's the start of the semester today. Who knows? Maybe something good will happen to you.”

“ Something good? Don't be ridiculous, Anthony!”

“ It will be like all these past years, annoying and boring.”

“ Don't say that! I have the intuition that this year will be different. I have the conviction that you’ll make a fateful encounter.” He grinned.

Three friends were joyfully walking to school together, as they have always been for years. Those three have known each other since childhood and their names respectfully are Sabrina Mosley, Josiane Sakamoto, and Patricia Garden.

“ Josiane, it's the start of the school year. How do you feel?” Sabrina Mosley asked.

“ I'm feeling great. I'm ready to kick it off.” She answered with assurance.

“ Don't forget me, you meanie!” Patricia was lagging behind Sabrina and Josiane. She could hardly catch up with them.

“ We're sorry!” Sabrina uttered apologetically.

“ How can we forget you? You're our friend. We're united by an unbreakable bond; the bond of friendship. We're the BFF!” Josiane uttered full of emotions in her tone.

“ Best of friends forever. Ha! Ha! Ha!”

“ Okay girls, let's do our best this year! Let's show them what we're made of!” Josiane uttered with spirit.

“ Yeah!” Sabrina nodded.

“ Absolutely! Let's do this! We should probably get going now. We only have 5 minutes remaining before the bell rings.” Patricia reminded them of the time.

“ Just 5 minutes? Time sure flew fast. We can't be late on our first day, can we? We'll meet at lunchtime. Likewise, we'll probably have the same lunches. Let's move it, girls?”

“ Roger!” The girls entered the schoolyard and headed straight to their respective classrooms before the bell caught upon them.

Ring! Ring! Ring!

“ Hello, class! How are you today?”

“ It's a pleasure to meet all of you today. I'm Joseph Hiwatari and starting today, I'll be your homeroom teacher. I hope we'll be best friends. Let's start the day by doing something simple. Take a piece of paper. Write your names and tell me what you want to do later in life, or what you enjoy doing; something that you're passionate about.”

Everyone took a piece of paper and did what the teacher asked of them. After they have finished, the teacher collected the papers and?

Ring! Ring! Ring!

“ Okay, class, it's time to say goodbye. I'll miss all of you. I know you'll miss me too. But the good news is, we'll meet again tomorrow. See you all tomorrow!” The students exited the classroom one by one.

All the periods went by until lunchtime.

Ring! Ring! Ring!

Sabrina and Patricia looked at their schedule and checked whether they had the same lunches or not. As fate would have it, they had the same lunches, but unfortunately, Josiane didn’t have the same lunch as them. Patricia and Sabrina had A lunches, while Josiane had B lunch.

“ Patricia, there you are! What lunch do you have?” Sabrina asked joyfully, hoping they had the same lunches.

“ A lunch, hum! Unfortunately, I don't have A- lunch. I have B- lunch. It's a shame! Looks like we won't be together this time. Sorry, I have to go. Have fun at your lunches! Bye-bye!”

“ Wait!” Josiane got interpellated as she was leaving.

“ Let's meet after our lunches today! See you!” Josiane uttered with a warm grin.

“ Patricia, don't you think Josiane is way too calm about all this; Something unbelievable may happen today.”

Anthony was waiting for Ryuji in the hallway to ask him about his schedule. As he turned up, they walked a few steps together.

“ What lunch do you have, Ryuji?” He asked.

“ I have B- lunch!”

“ Too bad! I have A- lunch. See you after lunch!” Anthony turned to leave but was stopped by Ryuji.

“ Anthony, can't you change your lunch?”

“ I'm afraid I can't!”

“ I understand!” He sighed.

Seeing Ryuji’s sad expression, he felt bad as all this was happening due to him. It turned out that Anthony had the same lunch as Ryuji, but asked to have a different one for a reason only he knows.

(Sorry, Ryuji! I had my lunch changed deliberately. I didn’t want you to be stuck with only me. Of course, I’m very happy that we’re friends and all, but you can’t only have me in your life. You have to meet new people and get to know them. I know you’re persuaded that everyone that approaches you is only after money and prestige, but who knows? Today, you might make an acquaintance that’ll change your life forever).

“ Ryuji, look at me! You'll be fine on your own. Who knows? You might make a new friend.”

“ See you after lunch!”

Ryuji and Josiane headed to their respective classrooms while Sabrina, Patricia, and Anthony headed toward the cafeteria to have lunch.

“ Let's sit at that table over there for lunch!” After picking what they wanted to eat, Patricia and Sabrina headed to a table to eat.

Meanwhile, Ryuji and Josiane, having finished with their classes, also headed to the cafeteria to have their lunch. Both of them walked opposite each other, with their shoulders clashing when they walked past each other.

(Let's see! Where should I sit, hum? Over there?)

Josiane was looking where to sit and noticed a table with just one person seated at it. Out of all the tables at the cafeteria, that table specifically picked her interest.

“ Hello, do you mind if I sit here?”

“ Who are you?” Ryuji asked.

“ My bad! Where are my manners? I should introduce myself. My name's Josiane Sakamoto. Nice to make your acquaintance!”

“ Go away?”

“ What? Did I do something?”

Josiane was very confused about his behavior toward her. Why was he being so rude to her when she had done nothing wrong.

“ Just go? Don't come near me? You're here because of my dad, aren't you?”

She got even more confused with the latter’s statement and wanted to understand what was wrong with him.

“ I have no idea what you're talking about. I just wanted to keep you company, but if you don't want me to, then I'm leaving. What rudeness?”

“ Don't insult me!”

He was about to kick her with his fists, when:

“ What are you waiting for? Go ahead, coward!

Josiane left the table very upset. She sat at another table and had her lunch. Ryuji on the other hand was very disheartened at what had just happened.

(What's wrong with me? I thought I got over it by now).

Ring! Ring! Ring!

As promised, Sabrina, Patricia, and Josiane meet up after lunch, with Josiane being in a sour mood due to what had happened earlier.

“ How was lunch, Josiane?” Sabrina asked.

“ What's wrong? Did something happen?” Patricia asked out of worry.

“ It's that boy I met at lunch. He irritated me. I was trying to be nice, and he yelled at me talking about his dad.” Josiane narrated to her friends the unpleasantness she had at the cafeteria.

“ You must mean, Ryuji Fujimiya?” Sabrina picked up who she was talking about.

“ You know him?”

“ Are you kidding? You're the only one who doesn't know who he is.” Patricia uttered.

“ Is he famous or something of the sort?”

“ Listen up! I will tell you who Ryuji Fujimiya is. After listening to me, maybe you'll understand his earliest behavior towards you.” Sabrina harbored an assertive expression.

“ Ryuji Fujimiya is the heir of the Fujimiya family and is engaged to Sasaki Sono. As the Fujimiya heir, he must have a lot of pressure on his shoulders. That must explain his behavior. I never saw him smile unless he was with his best friend, Anthony Flower.”

Ring! Ring! Ring!

The ring interrupted their conversation. The girls had yet one more class to go before they could call it a day.

“ See you later! Don't think about it too much!” Patricia and Sabrina left for their classrooms.

Ring! Ring! Ring!

Josiane headed to her last period of the day, which happens to be P.E. Francois Rozan was the professor in charge of the class.

“ Listen up! For today's P.E, we'll run one lap around the stadium.” The professor gave instructions.

(She's fast! She's good at running. Maybe I should apologize for my behavior earlier).

Josiane and Ryuji happen to be in the same P.E. class, which is the only class they have in common. Having reflected on his earliest actions, Ryuji realized that he shouldn’t have behaved so rudely toward someone who hadn’t done anything wrong.

Ring! Ring! Ring!

“ Good job today! See you all tomorrow!”

Ryuji ran into two troublemakers on his way back from P.E. class. Victor and Dominic were troublemakers and would trouble Ryuji whenever they encountered him, but the latter always ignored them every time.

“ Hey, Ryuji, want to fight?”

Ryuji walked past them, ignoring them as he always does.

“ Don't ignore us? We're talking to you?”

They were about to kick him with their fists, when:

In a moment of reflex, Ryuji kicked them diagonally. The movement was fast but accurate. Josiane who was still in the area witnessed everything and was stupefied.

(Incredible! He defeated them so easily with one punch).

(Oh no! What have I done? I hope no one saw me).

“ Interesting! You're capable of using your fists. That was an exceptional fight!” Josiane walked toward him, clapping her hands.

“ It's you?”

Stay tuned if you want to know what happens next?

To be continued---------------------------!!!

Taylor Victoria
F.C Fondness