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Effortlessly Heartwarming

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Tobio yawned as he sat up in bed. He didn’t have to look at the phone to know what the date was. 

February 14th.

He sighed. He wasn’t really looking forward to the rest of the day and wished he could just lie back down and sleep all day long.

He couldn’t do it, though. He had to go to classes, which would begin in forty-five minutes, according to his phone. His professors had a strict attendance policy so he couldn’t skip even if he wanted to. Plus, he had volleyball practice in the afternoon, and he was certainly not going to sleep instead of that. The team was playing a practice match against another college team, and the coach had told them all that they had to show up, no excuses. Not like he, of all people, needed any reason to show up to practice, though.

Tobio opened the world clock on his phone and noted the time. It was 7 pm in another part of the world, oceans away from where he was.

Not that I have time to call or message anyone right now, anyway.

As quickly and efficiently he could, he got ready to head out to class. He wasn’t expecting the doorbell of his apartment to ring right then, however.

Frowning, Tobio opened the door, expecting to see Shouyou in the mood to race him all the way to the campus, and ready to tell him off. But the face in front of him was unfamiliar, and there was a large bouquet of bluebells in the arms of the same person.

“Delivery for… Kageyama Tobio?” the individual inquired. Tobio nodded, accepting the bouquet. He was probably a flower delivery guy, Tobio speculated. But why were flowers addressed to him?

As he was about to reach for his wallet, the delivery guy shook his head and said, “Ah, it’s already been paid for, according to the receipt.” 

Tobio could only nod wordlessly, and he started looking around for a container as the door shut behind him. When he examined the flowers more closely, he noticed a note attached to the bouquet. In beautiful italics, the message said:

Bluebells for you, because the color always reminds me of your eyes. Happy Valentine’s Day, Tobio.

P.S.: You better be about to leave for class, love; you know how your professors get.

Tobio turned beet red. He was always so effortlessly romantic. Placing the bouquet carefully in the only vase he owned (a gift), he rushed off to class, making a mental note to express his gratitude later.


Entering the classroom for his first lecture of the day, Tobio gratefully took a seat next to Kei, who had saved a place for him. Letting his eyes do a once-over, the blonde smirked.

“Most people improve their appearance on Valentine’s Day, king. But of course, there are no rules for royalty.”

Tobio knew there was no malice behind those words; it was simply their way of greeting. So he let out a breathy chuckle and retorted playfully, “It appears that you haven’t adhered to those rules either, so are you promoting yourself to royalty status?”

Kei laughed softly before his gaze turned tender. With a faraway look in his eyes, he said, “This is Tadashi’s favorite outfit; he picked it out for me in the morning, actually.”

“Right, right. I don’t need the details.”

“Please, king”, Kei drawled. “I have listened to way too many of your details on the phone when you’re agonizing over something.” 

The professor entered the classroom then, and the conversation ended abruptly, but not unpleasantly.

Tobio didn’t think it possible, but he was glad for Kei’s friendship. It had kept him afloat when everything was weighing him down, and the blonde had even helped him pick out classes for his first semester. And when Kei needed a level-headed person to beat rational thought into him, Tobio had stepped up to the role. For what it was worth, their friendship had been one of the best things to happen to both of them.


Classes passed by without incident, and Tobio was not expecting anything else when the next surprise showed up as he was getting ready for volleyball practice.

In his gym locker was a box of his favorite chocolates and another note in that striking font.

I know you would never skip practice even if you did skip class today, haha!  

P.S.: Don’t eat too many before practice, okay?

Tobio blushed, a tiny smile on his face. Even when he was gloating over his latest attempt at outsmarting his boyfriend, he was always so effortlessly compassionate.

Some of his team members snickered behind him. One of them peered over Tobio’s shoulder to look at the chocolates, and let out a low whistle.

“Goddamn, that guy goes so overboard with everything that he always makes me feel like I’m not doing enough for my girlfriends.”

There was collective laughter in the locker room.


Around 9 pm, when he opened the door to his apartment, Tobio frowned once more. He hadn’t cooked anything, but he could smell food. And he could recognize that aroma anywhere. It was his favorite meal from his favorite restaurant. Then, he spotted the bag of takeout sitting on the kitchen counter.

But how…? 

Stepping closer to the bag to inspect its contents, Tobio’s eyes widened. There was another note inside.

Eat up, my love, and then call me. I’ll be waiting :)

He felt his jaw drop open as the note escaped his grasp and fluttered to the floor. He was always so effortlessly loving.

Tobio scarfed down the meal, partially due to hunger and partially due to the anticipation of making that call. According to the math, it was a little after 8 in the morning, which was when they usually called each other. He was going to be right on time.

After finishing dinner, Tobio remembered Kei’s words from before and changed into an outfit he knew his boyfriend would love. He glimpsed at his reflection in the mirror, and when he was satisfied with how he looked (since when did he care about this stuff, anyway?), he sat down at the edge of the double bed and pressed ‘Call’.

The receiver picked up almost immediately.

“Good evening, Tobio”, Tooru’s deep voice came through the speaker just as the video came on. He looked and sounded like he had just woken up, which made sense, as he didn’t have class on Tuesdays and allowed himself sleep in a little. 

“Good morning, Oikawa-san.” 

Tooru laughed with amusement, throwing his head back. “Always so formal on the phone, aren’t you?”

Tobio ignored the comment completely, with eager eyes, exclaimed, “Happy Valentine’s day, Oikawa-san.”

“Tooru.”

“Huh?”

“How long have we been dating now, Tobio-chan? And honestly, we’ve known each other for even longer. You should just call me Tooru by now.”

Tobio hesitated.

“Then… don’t add –chan to my name.”

Tooru giggled, and his boyfriend’s heart melted at the sound. For all the silly voices and sounds he made, Tooru also made really pretty ones. The vibration from the laughter also caused the many layers Tooru was wearing to shift slightly.

It was probably very cold, Tobio guessed.

Much softer this time, he said, “Happy Valentine’s day, Tooru.”

His boyfriend brightened up immediately and leaned forward with excitement.

“Did you receive all three gifts?”

“I did.”

They both knew Tobio was dying to know how Tooru had pulled it off successfully.

“I can hear the questions in your head all the way from Boston, Tobio”, Tooru said, jokingly.

“Well, answer them already then”, Tobio replied, his voice more serious than he had intended it to be. It caused his boyfriend to go silent for a while. A little worried, he asked, squinting at the screen of his phone, “Oikawa… um, Tooru?”

“Ah, I was just… surprised at how deep your voice was right now”. Tobio heard some nervous laughter as his boyfriend scratched his neck awkwardly, and then Tooru continued, “Well, the flowers were simple enough; I just got the company to deliver them to you. The chocolates were a little more difficult, but your great Oikawa-san never fails at persuading people, and in this case I got your friend Glasses-kun to put them in your locker- “

“Wait, how did he get my- oh, it’s Tsukishima, of course, he figured my combination out.”

“He’s really clever, that one. Don’t be mad at him, Tobio; he’s a good friend who wants to see you happy.”

Friend or not, Tobio was going to hunt Kei down the next day.

“Anyway, I got Chibi-chan to get the spare keys of the apartment from the manager and hand them off to that pinch-server- “

Tobio looked as though he couldn’t believe his own ears.

“You got Yamaguchi involved?”

Tooru made an indignant sound at that.

“Don’t say it like that; he was excited at the prospect! So, Yamaguchi-kun went to your favorite place and got takeout, and he left it in the apartment. End of story.”

Tobio had a dazed look in his eyes. He didn’t know whether to feel horrified or overjoyed at how much thought his boyfriend had put into being there for him on Valentine’s day, even without being there.

Misjudging the long silence on the line as a sign that his boyfriend was mad, Tooru nervously added, “Surprise?”

Tobio made his choice of emotion. Happiness it was.

“Thank you, Tooru. I… wasn’t really looking forward to today because you’re studying abroad and all, but you still made it so enjoyable, and I haven’t done- “

“You didn’t have to do anything, Tobio. Your presence in my life is a bright enough spot in my universe”, Tooru said firmly. He was stunned at how straightforwardly the compliment had been delivered, considering how reserved Tobio was. 

Then he brightly added, “You can always do something for White Day!”

Tobio laughed at this. Then, as though he was debating something, he paused before quickly letting out, “I miss you.”

Tooru’s expression nearly crumpled at that. Ah, he thought, a fond smile spreading on his face, he really doesn’t realize how much the things he says affect me.

“I miss you too. I’ll be home soon.”