May Contain Hotness
We start out with a little recap of Tezuka winning and Atobe showing his shapely leg and telling Tezuka to run along to Germany and not worry his pretty little head because Atobe will take care of the team here and Tezuka showing his I LOVE YOU ATOBE face.
Then Tachibana and Chitose step onto the court to do battle with their former senpai, both of whom have grey hair, possibly due to premature aging or a pigment shortage in the anime studio. The one guy does have dark roots, though, so maybe he's enrolled in a drug trial for anti-aging treatments for baby boomers. Or just way overdue for a cut and colour.
Meanwhile, Eiji says all the things to Tezuka that I yelled at the screen last week about not leaving without
Tezuka looks a little worried since he still has the bruises from the last favour he did for Fuji and they were really hard to explain to Atobe later. But it's going to be a few days at least until Atobe flies out to Germany for a visit, so he figures there's time to concoct a plausible story, like he got thrown in jail for being drunk and disorderly and got clubbed while resisting arrest.
Tachibana and Chitose are doing awesomely, both with tennis and their lovely hair.
But they are dissed by their opponents. "You haven't had nearly enough sex with each other to be a decent doubles team," the highschoolers say, as they go into their senior citizen version of synchro.
"Well, we can't help it if lots of other people want to have sex with us too," Chitose says. "We're pretty."
At another court, Fuji has released Tezuka from the handcuffs to play a tennis match with him. Eiji, as the only spectator, is forced to parrot illogical and OOC dialogue such as: "What is the point of this match?" He mutters under his breath, "What is the point of these lines?"
Tezuka leaves Fuji lying spent on the court and wondering if he should have let Tezuka be seme once in a while after all.
Tachibana and Chitose are sadly defeated by the Stupid Hair Pair and without us getting to see nearly enough of their awesomeness. Kirihara encourages them! He gets more adorable every day. ♥ But some other random highschoolers come along and basically say the same thing Eiji was made to: Why challenge someone if you can't win?
It looks like a rumble is about to go down, but Atobe steps onto the court and all eyes turn to him (as they do). The middle schoolers take up the Katsu no wa Hyoutei! Katsu no wa Atobe! chant. (They never do the "loser" part of the chant in the anime, I've noticed.)
But Atobe, looking hot, says: The winner will be Court 5.
Irie, predictably, gets into the trash talk again at the net, but Atobe, looking hot, refuses to engage. They play and Atobe takes the first point with pretty much his most flamboyant smash to date: Fugue Towards Disappointment.
Everyone is astonished! We see the exact same still of Tokugawa and that other guy as we did last week, onto which we are meant to project the astonishment. I'll just re-link it.
So, Atobe, looking hot, takes the first five games.
Irie screams in frustration! "Me lose tennis? That's unpossible!" For the last game, Atobe brings out the Lots of Icicles Thingy he does to see his opponent's blind spots, which must work because of Atobe's hotness because there's really no other explanation for the technique.
OMG! All the icicles explode! It turns out Irie has no blind spots and was really just pulling a Fuji on Atobe because that's the kind of super-nice senpai he is. Atobe, looking hot, now loses a bunch of games.
Oni delivers a speech about how Irie is too strong for Court 3 but was put there for some really good reason, like even the coaches hate his tricky ways or three is his lucky number or aliens did it or something.
Okay, so I don't like Irie. And he looks like Velma from Scooby Doo. But I'm not putting in a screencap to bolster my point, because that's how much I don't like him.
Kirihara, whom I like very much indeed, gets all worked up and cheers loudly for Atobe, his new
Atobe, looking hot, tells Kirihara to shut up. He uses the Ice Sculpture Attack again but somehow Irie manages to infiltrate even Atobe's bizarre inner fantasy world and all the icicles are on Atobe's side of the court. Cause Irie's strength is being a jerk or some such.
But his jerkishness does send Atobe into a flashback to his tender (and chunky) youth, so it's not all bad. See, Atobe used to live in Merrie Olde England where he was harassed by youths who called him stupid and beat him in tennis. Also, ickle Keigo was forced to wear a sweater vest.
Apparently, it was this horrific bullying that caused Atobe to retreat into his fantasy life, where he was strong and smart and had an imaginary friend named Kabaji.
Back in "reality", either it starts to snow or the intensity of Atobe's childhood memories has caused a volcanic eruption somewhere and ash is drifting through the air. Either way, Atobe looks hot.
They play all serious-like. "Open all your pores," Atobe tells himself, heedless of how the dirt kicked up on the court could cause unsightly blackheads.
"Drop your pride and give up already," Irie says.
"Fuck pride, I'm doing this for the team," Atobe says. Somewhere, an angel gets its wings. Irie sends the icicles at Atobe but they all explode because of the amazingness of Atobe's nobility and team playitude.
Also, apparently because of his X-Ray Vision (possibly from contact lenses advertised in the back of a comic book Shishido was reading). Yes, Atobe's Insight lets him see people's skeletons now.
But he's hot, so that's okay.
Here's that still of Tokugawa again, this time with snow.
Anyhow, this is Atobe Kingdom, which as a power is basically just Atobe Pwns All. He can aim for points the opponent can't even move to reach. Or maybe they are just immobilized by his glorious presence. Which is actually more plausible. He takes another point and now it's six all.
But due to the snow (or ash), Atobe slips on the court and falls. He gets up, looking hot and a little dirty, and they're on to a tie-break.
But his ankle is hurt and Irie targets it. OMG, how ironic! Atobe thinks. They play one of those jillion-point tiebreaks and Atobe's thoughts turn, as they do, to Tezuka and their Jillion-Point Tiebreak of Love. I can't let the precious memory of that passionate time be sullied by stupid Velma, he thinks and it gives him the strength he needs to play on.
Irie, on the other hand, is sustained by his innate jerkishness. Or possibly candy. He lobs the ball over Atobe's head. Atobe races back for it. "I'll keep my promise, Tezuka!" he yells.
Tezuka, waiting for the bus in the snow, actually hears this and looks up. Or maybe he saw an eagle.
Atobe, looking hot, collapses. Irie drops his racquet. The game is a draw. Atobe is carried off the court. They shove Krauser (still unconscious from last week) off the bench and tenderly lay Atobe there instead. Kirihara weeps over Atobe's broken body. Well, okay, he doesn't. But he totally should have.
Tezuka sits on the bus and thinks about Atobe. Atobe lies on the bench and thinks about Tezuka.
I think about them both on a private beach in Hawaii.
Next week: liberté, égalité, fraternité.