The First Week –A Soon-hee Story Conclusion Update!

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Re: The First Week –A Soon-hee Story (Updated 9/10)

Post by Hoitash » Thu Sep 10, 2015 11:28 am

Mirage_GSM wrote:
I pause practicing turning the large bag hanging in front of me’s imaginary kneecaps to broken shards and grab a towel and some water.
I think there's a word or two or five missing here.
D'oh!

I was supposed to go back and fix that and I forgot. I even knew the revision to make -I just forgot to make it.

It's done now, so hopefully it works better.
Nice chapter as always.
Danke :)
I'm pretty sure there are no kicks of any kind in Judo, though.
Vital strike training. It's one of the forms -along with most of the different kinds of grappling techniques- that aren't allowed in competition, and generally just teach the forms.

Alternatively it's just something Soon-hee likes to do and has incorporated into her training.
Compared to other martial arts it's also kinda limited use for self-defense, since a lot of techniques rely on the opponent adhering to the rules...
Hence the vital strike and improvised weapon training.

I imagine Soon-hee's physical therapist taught her a lot of self defense techniques based on martial art moves first, and from there Soon-hee liked it enough to learn the art proper. Aikido woulda probably been more useful, but it's purely defensive nature would mean Soon-hee would be, well, on the defensive. She doesn't like that, because as she and you both said, the bad guys cheat.
"Who are you, that do not know your history?" -Ulysses
Misha Time: United States of Misha Meet the Hakamichis
Awesome, served on the rocks: Hisao and Kenji- Master Detectives! (Check out the Archive for more!)
I wrote a book! Brythain edited it! If you like mystery and history please consider: A Sister's Habit
"You are absolutely insane. And entertaining." -griffon8

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Re: The First Week –A Soon-hee Story (Updated 9/10)

Post by Mirage_GSM » Thu Sep 10, 2015 4:33 pm

It's not so much that they cheat per se...
More like they don't wait for you to even teach them the rules in the first place :-)
Emi > Misha > Hanako > Lilly > Rin > Shizune

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Re: The First Week –A Soon-hee Story (Updated 9/18)

Post by Hoitash » Fri Sep 18, 2015 4:50 pm

Sunday, Monday, Happy Days,
Tuesday, Wednesday, Happy Days…
Eh, you get the idea.

Enjoy having that stuck in your head now (implying anyone knows what I’m talking about.)

Previous Chapter

Chapter Seventeen: The Weekend Comes


The elderly librarian smiles at me from her book as I walk in. I smile and nod a greeting to her before heading toward the computers along the right wall. I haven’t been back here since I checked out the books because of homework and fatigue, but I remember the paths and routes around easily enough.

A couple other students are at the computers, but none of them pay me any attention as I take a seat.

Hello, computer. Did you miss me?

Granted my phone has internet, because of some Foundation regulation or something about smartphones. Still, it isn’t as fast, the screen is small, and for the amount of time I spend reading online I want a full screen.

Still, as much as I’d like to spend an hour or two on Wikipedia, I do want to email Kenji first. Especially since I don’t know how long that will take, and I’d rather do that with a proper keyboard than risk the library closing while I’m on a wiki walk. So once I have my email up, I start a new message and begin typing:

Dear Kenji and Miya-san,

Sorry for not emailing sooner, but I’ve been busy adjusting and with homework. I don’t think I’m adjusting very well, though, because I haven’t been sleeping well. I actually spent last night sleeping in the closet after a bad nightmare. I think I’m getting the hang of this place, so hopefully this isn’t a precedent.


That sounds so reassuring, I think to myself.

Everything else is going relatively well, though. I’m managing to stay on top of my schoolwork. I was worried if I’d be able to keep up with it, but the only classes that are giving me trouble are science, math, and Japanese. I’ve never been good with math, the Japanese teacher kind of freaks me out, and I’m not much of a science person and the teacher is kind of… spacey, I guess is the right word. The work’s not hard like in Japanese, though. I seriously think our Japanese teacher forgot how to have fun, and is punishing the students for it.

English and social studies are going well. I think the English teacher likes my work, which is a good thing, I guess. The social studies teacher is really knowledgeable and kind of goofy, but I think he does it on purpose. Whatever works, I guess.

I’m getting along well with the other students, fortunately. The girl who lives across from me is friendly and helpful. She’s her class’ class rep, and she reminds me a bit of you, Kenji.

The girl that lives next to me is in my class, and she’s friendly, too. Kinda like you, Miya-san. She likes to eat lunch with me and talk about foreign literature. I don’t talk much with anyone else in class, but it’s a start, and I don’t mind.

Judo Club is off to an interesting start. There’s eight of us now, and five of us are new. On top of that, four of us are first-years, we only have two seniors, and it looks like the Vice Captaincy is in jeopardy. The other second-year doesn’t want the job, so the job will have to go to one of the first years, because no one else is-


Oh Shit,

Crap. I’m a second-year. A senior can’t be Vice Captain for the entire year, and I’m a belt rank higher than the two ranked first-years.

Shit. I delete a couple words to rework the sentence:

The other second-year doesn’t want the job, and I just had a foreboding feeling. Can’t be helped, though. I like the club, and the Captain and Temporary Vice Captain are helpful and really skilled. The Captain can be a bit dramatic, though, and the Temporary Vice Captain is… weird. But in a good way.

Like you are, I can’t help but think.

The first-years are inexperienced but eager and enthusiastic. So while it might be a rough start, I think we’ll be ready for the looming competitions. The Captain seems determined to make sure we will be, anyway.

I don’t have any weekend plans yet, but knowing the people I’ve met so far, they’ll probably drag me into something. I should probably go into town and buy some oranges, and get through some reading. Sorry, I’m rambling now.

Miya-san, thank you for the casseroles and cookies, and helping me move in. Kenji, thank you. For everything.

I’ll text or email after the weekend.

Thank you for everything,
Soon-hee


Once the email is typed up to my satisfaction, I send it and spend the rest of the library hours perusing the few safe corners of the internet I’ve managed to find. So mostly Wikipedia and foreign forums where people get hysterically didactic about the smallest things. It’s fun to read and helps me figure out my reading list.

I wonder if Maiko goes to any of these sites. Her English is pretty good, too.

Once the library nears closing I log off and grab some dinner. It’s a bit later than I normally eat, and the cafeteria isn’t very crowded. I don’t run into anyone I know, and the noise is low enough I can tune it out while I focus on my meal. The fact that I’m very hungry and very tired probably helps.

All these bad nights are catching up with me. I should go to bed early tonight.

While eating, I mentally prioritize the order of my homework. My exciting Friday night plans concluded, I finish eating and head back to my dorm room, where I again fail to run into anyone I know, although I think I see one of the first-years skittering from the corner of my eye.

And I thought I was part rodent.

Some people just like to keep to themselves.

Anyway, I barely get started on my homework when my phone starts vibrating. A quick check reveals an email from Miya-san, so I abandon my work to read it:

Hi Hee-chan!

I smirk at the nickname. She kind of pulled it out of nowhere my first night at their home, and it flowed so well I didn’t mind. It fits.

Glad the casseroles worked out. I was afraid I burned some of them. I never was much of a cook.

Anyway, it’s a shame about the trouble sleeping. I use to have trouble sleeping when I was younger because I couldn’t get my brain to settle, so my grandma gave me hot cocoa to help. That might work for you. Or maybe some uncaffeinated herbal tea. It might just be getting used to new surroundings, though. I always have trouble sleeping when I head off for work.

Sleep issues aside, you seem to be adjusting pretty well. You have a lot of strength in you, and I don’t just mean physical. You’re off to a great start, and it sounds like Yamaku is working out well for you already.

Oh, before I forget, I’m mailing a copy of the photo I took outside the gate of all three of us. It’s in a frame and should fit on your desk next to the candy wrapper. Or you can hang it somewhere if you prefer. Maybe make your closet more homey?

I look forward to your next text or email, and we’ll be in touch about the Philippines and all that eventually.

Best Regards,

-Miya


I smirk at the email. Making my closet seem more homey is the sort of thing Miya would think of, but it’s not something I actually want to do. Ideally I want to avoid my closet as much as possible.

I put my phone away and try to get back to my homework, but for some reason I can’t concentrate. I get up and pace a bit to try and clear my head, and I slowly realize why I can’t focus.

I miss Kenji.

Back in the psych ward he visited pretty regularly, and his visits were the highlights of my time there. He was someone I could rely on at a time where that was in short supply, and now I won’t see him again for months.

Took you long enough to realize that.

I sigh and sit back at my desk, wiggling my toes for the tactile sensation of the carpet on my feet. My homework blurs in front of me, and I can’t bring myself to work on it.

Maybe I should call him….

Part of me wants to, even though I just sent an email. I sigh again and abandon my chair, sitting on the floor next to my nightlight. It’s the closest I can be to him, really.

All that time with no one to rely on, and then he showed up and now he’s gone…

Not gone. Just out of focus.

Right. He’s still a part of my life. He’s still there for me.

I sigh, inhale slowly, exhale, and pull out my phone to call Kenji. The phone starts vibrating in my hand, startling me enough that I nearly drop it. I shake my head like a wet dog to get a hold of myself before looking at my phone. It’s another email:

Hey, kid! I know it doesn’t seem like it right now, but you’re actually doing a great job adjusting. Way better than I did. Sucks about running out of casseroles, though –you’d think the cafeteria would have decent food, but apparently the budget all goes to dietary needs. Understandable, but you might wanna pick up some cooking skills. I have some easy recipes I can send you if you’re interested.

I always found it odd how Kenji was the cook in the family. Miya-san was an excellent baker, but in almost every other regard her cooking skills were at best passable, at worse a fire hazard. For whatever reason, Kenji was a decent cook, though the best way I’d describe his food was utilitarian. It wasn’t flashy, but it was good. I imagine a lot of people would consider Miya and Kenji weird for his house-husband-like nature, but they didn’t seem to mind.

It sucks you’re not sleeping well, though. Between your swimming, classes, and Judo, you must be exhausted by now. You might wanna get to bed early tonight.

As for classes, is that old bat still teaching Japanese? I swear he feeds on the misery of his students. His exams are a pain in the ass, too, but you should do fine.

Speaking of exams, don’t forget Ito will tell you when his tests are if you ask, so you can study ahead. The work itself is difficult, but the exams are pretty easy if you stay on the bounce. As for Mutou, your best bet is to talk to him outside of class. I know he seems kinda creepy, but he’s a decent guy- just spacey. My partner can be like that too –must be a nerd thing.

It’s good that you’re meeting people you get along with. I know it’s hard to trust people, but there are still good people in this world. You just have to be willing to look, sometimes.

If anything bothers you and you need to talk, don’t hesitate to contact us. We’ll listen. Have a good weekend. Oh, and Hisato says hi.

-Kenji


I smile at my phone. Coincidence or not, it means a lot to me to know that there’s at least one person –a man no less- that I can depend on in this world, no matter what.

Kenji,

Thank you.

-Soon-hee


My response probably won’t make any sense to him, but I don’t care, because I know he won’t.

It’s getting a bit chilly on the floor, but I don’t feel like leaving. I lean my head back against the wall, flipping on my nightlight for the familiar glow even as I close my eyes. I let my mind slowly work its way into exhaustion, and as the sun sets and sprays my room in orange light I still can’t bring myself to get up.

Instead I lethargically grab a blanket from my bed and wrap it around me. I turn toward the nightlight next to me and briefly glance at, its pale glow a beacon against the orange and slowly setting sun. I remember when Kenji gave me that nightlight as a moving-in present into the psych ward.

That was a while ago, and yet it seems like it wasn’t. Strange. Well, as long as that light is here, so is Kenji, and that means come what may, in the end, I’ll be fine.

Though this is the end of the age of heroes, it has saved its best for last.

+++
Next Chapter

Kenji’s the hero we need, not the hero we deserve.

I’ll go sit in the corner now.
Last edited by Hoitash on Fri Sep 25, 2015 5:11 pm, edited 2 times in total.
"Who are you, that do not know your history?" -Ulysses
Misha Time: United States of Misha Meet the Hakamichis
Awesome, served on the rocks: Hisao and Kenji- Master Detectives! (Check out the Archive for more!)
I wrote a book! Brythain edited it! If you like mystery and history please consider: A Sister's Habit
"You are absolutely insane. And entertaining." -griffon8

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Re: The First Week –A Soon-hee Story (Updated 9/18)

Post by Mirage_GSM » Fri Sep 18, 2015 7:36 pm

I think you attributed Miya's baking skills to Soon-Hee at one point :-)

Hmm... Is this going to replace your Halloween special this year?
Emi > Misha > Hanako > Lilly > Rin > Shizune

My collected KS-Fan Fictions: Mirage's Myths
griffon8 wrote:Kosher, just because sex is your answer to everything doesn't mean that sex is the answer to everything.
Sore wa himitsu desu.

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Re: The First Week –A Soon-hee Story (Updated 9/18)

Post by Hoitash » Fri Sep 18, 2015 7:52 pm

Mirage_GSM wrote:I think you attributed Miya's baking skills to Soon-Hee at one point :-)
Whoops. Fixed.
Hmm... Is this going to replace your Halloween special this year?
This story has... a few chapters left, so their might be some overlap. The Halloween Special will begin soon without delay, depending on how well my editor is at fending off zombies with crutches.
"Who are you, that do not know your history?" -Ulysses
Misha Time: United States of Misha Meet the Hakamichis
Awesome, served on the rocks: Hisao and Kenji- Master Detectives! (Check out the Archive for more!)
I wrote a book! Brythain edited it! If you like mystery and history please consider: A Sister's Habit
"You are absolutely insane. And entertaining." -griffon8

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Re: The First Week –A Soon-hee Story (Updated 9/18)

Post by Mirage_GSM » Sat Sep 19, 2015 3:26 am

Is Helbereth still doing your editing or did you find someone else?
Emi > Misha > Hanako > Lilly > Rin > Shizune

My collected KS-Fan Fictions: Mirage's Myths
griffon8 wrote:Kosher, just because sex is your answer to everything doesn't mean that sex is the answer to everything.
Sore wa himitsu desu.

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Re: The First Week –A Soon-hee Story (Updated 9/18)

Post by Hoitash » Sat Sep 19, 2015 8:59 am

Mirage_GSM wrote:Is Helbereth still doing your editing or did you find someone else?
Indeed. Fortunately he's very proactive about saving New England from the zombie horde.

Not so much with getting my novellas edited, but the zombies take precedence.
"Who are you, that do not know your history?" -Ulysses
Misha Time: United States of Misha Meet the Hakamichis
Awesome, served on the rocks: Hisao and Kenji- Master Detectives! (Check out the Archive for more!)
I wrote a book! Brythain edited it! If you like mystery and history please consider: A Sister's Habit
"You are absolutely insane. And entertaining." -griffon8

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Re: The First Week –A Soon-hee Story (Updated 9/25)

Post by Hoitash » Fri Sep 25, 2015 5:10 pm

Whoever decided to have school on Saturday was obviously a very bitter Imperialist who chose to seek vengeance on the future youth of the nation.

That’s my theory and I’m sticking with it.

Previous Chapter

Chapter Eighteen: A Day Half-Done


If there is some higher power running this joke of a universe, he or she has a very twisted sense of humor. I say this because my Saturday schedule has not only my worst subjects, but also some of my best. One period I’m getting eyed by a constipated math teacher, the next my English skills are being admired.

On the bright side, I managed to have a good night’s sleep for what feels like weeks, though it’s only been a few days.

On the other hand, Mutou-Sensei may or may not be hungover. It’s hard to tell with him, sometimes. The last class for the half-day, the haggard science teacher blearily scrawls some questions on the board with the heading “Group Work.”

Then he slumps down in his chair and plants his head firmly on his desk.

I barely have time to blink before Maiko is crouching next to my desk, forgoing such niceties as a chair in order to work with me.

We’re both terrible at science. This can only end in tears.

Beaming at me, the weary-looking girl grins and asks, “Wanna group together?”

Well, misery loves company, so I shrug and reply, “Sure. Maybe we should ask someone who’s good at the subject to help?”

Tact is not in my vocabulary, apparently.

Impressive considering my efforts at trilingualism, actually.

“…Fair point,” Maiko concedes, “Any suggestions?”

You’re the only person I talk to.

Instead of that, I shrug again and say, “No idea. You?”

Maiko shrugs and looks around, grasping for a lifeline to save us humanities experts from the tribulations of the sciences. After a few moments of scanning the class, she grins and waves over our class rep, Hayato Sonoda, who seems to be wandering around in search of a group. Sonoda waves back and heads for his desk.

Sonoda sits a few seats ahead of me and one row over, so it isn’t too hard for him to scoot his desk into position. Sensei’s started a mumbled series grumblings at the noise of shuffling desks, but doesn’t raise his head.

“Hey, Maiko,” Sonoda greets when he’s joined us, “Hello, Kim. Need a hand?”

Maiko nods and puts on her girliest pout, which is rather fetching when combined with her weary look, “Oh please, Haya-kun, save these poor damsels from the terrors of math with letters in it.”

I guess they know each other.

Not surprising, really; because the classes at Yamaku are mostly ordered by disability, it makes sense that the students in each class would be close. It’s just another layer to the already cliquey nature of high school. That’s what Kenji said, at least.

“Are these questions even in the book?” I ask, flipping to the page numbers written on the board, “I think this stuff is related, but the questions are different.”

Mutou-Sensei perks his head up long enough to state, “Being able to think outside the box is the sign of a true scientist.”

He then puts his head back down, holds one hand up in a thumbs-up gesture, and slowly lowers it. This earns him a few scattered chuckles from several students, Sonoda among them.

How did he even hear me?

Well, Kenji did say that Mutou-Sensei was more observant than he let on.

Sonoda clears his throat to collect himself from his snickering to say, “In other words, these questions aren’t in the book, though they do use these pages as a reference base. So we should probably get started. Maiko, is your penmanship still crap?”

Maiko nods, “Yeah, and Soon-hee is kinda handicapped because I’m in her writing space.”

Sonoda raises an eyebrow at Maiko before he connects the dots. Not a lot of lefty’s around, after all.

“You could move your desk over,” I suggest, “Crouching like that is bad for your knees.”

Maiko adjusts to a kneeling position, which makes it hard for her to see over the desk but also gives me some room so I can write. My penmanship isn’t the greatest, but I can write quickly and still keep it reasonably neat.

“I guess that works,” Sonoda says, “Best get to it, then….”

Unsurprisingly, Sonoda does most of the work, trying his best to lead us to the right answer without spoon-feeding it to us. Maiko’s better at the math aspect, while I’m good at finding patterns and helping balance the equations, so between the three of us we manage to get the work done before the end of class. Barely.

“Thanks for the help, Haya-kun,” Maiko says once the bell’s done ringing –which earns a loud groan from our weary Sensei.

“No problem,” Sonoda says, “All part of the job.”

“Speaking of, I gotta badger some club members,” Maiko declares, and heads back to her desk to grab her stuff.

While she does that, I stand and give an appreciative bow to the class rep, who smiles, nods, and puts his desk back to rights while organizing a cleaning duty detail.

Exempt from the task today, I grab my things and head next door to Class 2-2 to apologize to Shibasaki. She probably get’s enough grief about her condition outside of the school gates without idiots like me adding to it inside.

You’re not an idiot, I hear Kenji’s voice chiding inside my head.

Maybe not, but I was rude.

Understandably so.

Great, now I’m arguing with myself. Doc’s gonna love this.

A few students are cautiously making their way out of the 2-2 class, so I patiently wait for them to leave before entering the room. A quick scan of the room reveals Shibasaki, who’s sweeping the floor while chatting with a male student holding a dustpan.

I carefully weave my way to her left side so she can see me. Along the way I once again think about the contrast between her personality and how she looks in the school uniform. It also makes this a bit easier –I’m apologizing to her student to student, not student to whatever she is in the Club.

I could do without the audience, though.

Shibasaki’s eye shifts toward me as soon as I enter her vision.

“Hey Kim, somethin’ up?” she asks.

“I just wanted to apologize for yesterday,” I say, “I was rude to you at lunch when I didn’t mean to be, and it was disrespectful to you as a guest in our classroom.”

I bow for emphasis.

“What did you do this time, Midders?” the guy holding the dustpan asks, his dull brown eyes blankly not staring into the distance.

Shibasaki rolls her eye, ignoring him and turning to face me –bopping the guy in the head with her broom in the process.

“Do be careful with that,” he says.

“Sorry, didn’t see you there,” Shibasaki quips.

“Ha. Ha.”

“Anyway,” Shibasaki says, “Kim, could you lift your head? It’s hard enough to look you in the eye.”

Was that remark necessary?

I reluctantly look up at Shibasaki, who looks both flustered and a bit amused. Looking at her is hard right now for several reasons, but I do it anyway.

“You weren’t rude, Kim,” Shibasaki states, “I was just worried if you had a problem with me.”

“I don’t.”

Not personally, at least.

“Well then there’s nothing to apologize for,” Shibasaki grins and pats my shoulder, which makes me shiver a bit, but she seems to take the motion for relief rather than anxiety.

Or maybe not, because she grimaces and removes her hand, “Anyway, I appreciate the sentiment, and I’m sorry the Captain bugged you with my bullshit.”

“Part of the job description,” I state.

Shibasaki shrugs, “I guess.”

“You done yet?” the guy asks, “No offense or anything, but it’s kinda boring just sitting here not staring off into space.”

“Yeah, yeah,” Shibasaki says, bopping him again with the broom.

“Sorry for keeping you,” I say. Struck by a sudden idea, I voice it before I can change my mind, “Would you like to come by for lunch Monday?”

Shibasaki grins, “Sure, I’ll bring drinks again, too.”

“Thanks.”

I bow again and leave the room.

I’m not entirely sure inviting her to lunch was a good idea. I mean it was a good idea from an interpersonal relationship standpoint, but it was a bad idea from a I hate having panic attacks standpoint.

Although looking at her hasn’t set me off yet.

Not that I’ve looked at her face for more than I’ve had to.

This I should bring up with the Doc.

If I ever want things between Shibasaki and me not to be awkward, I’m going to have to be able to look her in the eye.

'Fool that I am,' said he, 'that I did not tear out my heart the day I resolved to revenge myself.'

+++
Next Chapter

Were I man of less dignified disposition, I’d make a Batman joke here, because he’s the hero we need, not the one we deserve.

Wait, I made that joke last chapter.

Crap… Ilya! We’re going on a field trip! Bring the shotgun!
Last edited by Hoitash on Fri Oct 02, 2015 4:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"Who are you, that do not know your history?" -Ulysses
Misha Time: United States of Misha Meet the Hakamichis
Awesome, served on the rocks: Hisao and Kenji- Master Detectives! (Check out the Archive for more!)
I wrote a book! Brythain edited it! If you like mystery and history please consider: A Sister's Habit
"You are absolutely insane. And entertaining." -griffon8

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Re: The First Week –A Soon-hee Story (Updated 9/25)

Post by Mirage_GSM » Fri Sep 25, 2015 7:52 pm

Just spent some time looking for the scene where Son Hee did anything to antagonize Shibazaki, but I'm not sure I found anything worthy of an apology...

Anyway, GJ again.
Emi > Misha > Hanako > Lilly > Rin > Shizune

My collected KS-Fan Fictions: Mirage's Myths
griffon8 wrote:Kosher, just because sex is your answer to everything doesn't mean that sex is the answer to everything.
Sore wa himitsu desu.

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Re: The First Week –A Soon-hee Story (Updated 9/25)

Post by Hoitash » Fri Sep 25, 2015 11:36 pm

Mirage_GSM wrote:Just spent some time looking for the scene where Son Hee did anything to antagonize Shibazaki, but I'm not sure I found anything worthy of an apology...

Anyway, GJ again.
She adjusted her seat in a very obvious way during lunch. So basically she turned her back on Midders.

Midders -it's a cousin's nickname don't judge me- is probably used to her face being off-putting, and just accepts it because that's how she rolls. Soon-hee, despite having a rude speech pattern by Japanese standards (I said the use of honorifics was important here) is sensitive about that kind of thing and tends to apologize a lot (one of the results of a history of abuse) so she'll apologize for a slight that may not even exist or the other person considered inconsequential.

That said, I should probably go back and tweak it to make all that a little clearer.
"Who are you, that do not know your history?" -Ulysses
Misha Time: United States of Misha Meet the Hakamichis
Awesome, served on the rocks: Hisao and Kenji- Master Detectives! (Check out the Archive for more!)
I wrote a book! Brythain edited it! If you like mystery and history please consider: A Sister's Habit
"You are absolutely insane. And entertaining." -griffon8

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Re: The First Week –A Soon-hee Story (Updated 10/02)

Post by Hoitash » Fri Oct 02, 2015 4:17 pm

Time to meet the shrink again.

This is the third to last chapter, by the way.

Previous Chapter

Chapter Nineteen: The Doc is In


I knock on the door to the counselor’s office, waiting for her to invite me in. I have a lot on my mind right now, so it’s for the best that we agreed to this extra session.

The Doc calls for me to come in through the door, so I open it and step inside, closing the door behind me.

Dr. Gotou is sitting Japanese-style at the small table in the middle of the room, a cup of tea and a prepared serving tray in front of her.

As I step over to the table she smiles gently and greets, “Good afternoon, Miss Kim.”

I bow and return the greeting. The Doc gestures to the space across from her, which has an orange and a mug of tea waiting.

“I thought for today we’d have a more traditional session, and that it might help you relax if you had a snack and something to drink.”

“Thank you,” I say, and take my seat, sticking my legs under the table and sitting in a way that won’t aggravate my knees.

Despite my first proper night’s rest in what seems like a week, I am a bit sore today, but that’s from hurling Hiraga-Sensei around. Training or not, tossing around someone nearly twice my weight is not an easy feat.

I peel the orange and eat it, before taking a careful sip of the tea. It’s an herbal orange tea, and though it’s a bit tepid, it’s pretty good.

Well, she has read my file.

“So,” Doc says, “when we last left off, you expressed concern about your Judo Club meetings. How have those been going?”

Straight to the point today, I see. Works for me.

“Better than I thought, honestly,” I reply, taking another sip of tea before continuing, “I haven’t had a panic attack or anything, one of the first-years is looking to me for help with picking a technique, and I got to throw our club advisor around.”

Okay, that last one should probably have stayed in my head. Good job, Brain.

The Doc smirks and sips her own tea, “So you’re getting along well with the other club members? Even the one you were concerned about?”

I start to nod, but stop, “Well, except for that, yes. The Captain noticed me acting oddly, because I try to avoid looking at her and did something kind of rude to her when we ate lunch together,” I pause to take another to collect my thoughts. Doc patiently waits for me to continue, “and she –the club member, I mean- thought I was mad at her because of that, so now the Captain knows her appearance is a potential trigger, but I apologized to other member and explained I’m not mad at her.”

The Doc quietly processes my little rambling explanation, sipping her tea for a few moments. After setting her cup down, she asks me, “It sounds like you handled everything very well. How are you planning on handling her appearance in the future?”

“I invited her to lunch on Monday,” I reply, fiddling idly with my cup for a moment before adding, “and I’m going to try and not avert my eyes this time.”

By which I mean not turn my back on her like she’s a bastard child of the manor lord, or something.

Doc raises an eyebrow as she takes another sip, “Are you okay with that?”

I look down at my cup and admit, “I’m not entirely sure, honestly.”

“…Yet you still decided to do it,” Doc states.

I look up from my cup, “And it’s not her fault that looking at her makes me uncomfortable.”

“True,” Doc states, “the real question is if you think you can handle it?”

I take a couple more sips of tea before replying, “Well, I can at least not move my chair away from her. That’s a start, at least.”

Doc nods, “Yes it is,” she sips her own tea before continuing, “You also mentioned last time being nervous around some of the teachers. Is that still an issue?”

“Not really,” I reply, “I think I’m used to them now. I’ve been getting along pretty well with the other students, too, though I tend to keep to myself.”

“That’s alright,” she says, “As long as you don’t avoid them or cut yourself off from the ones your interacting with.”

I nod; my previous therapist and Kenji warned me of that, too. For someone like me, who is both naturally introverted, distrusting, and borderline agoraphobic, becoming a full-on hermit is a definite possibly, and something I’d like to avoid, since I like all the people I’ve met at Yamaku, in one way or another.

We both sip our tea for a few minutes, while I mull over something in my mind and wait for the Doc to bring up another subject. She doesn’t, though, so I guess she’s waiting for me to bring up something I might have on my mind.

Looking up from my cup, I face the Doc and ask, “Doc?”

The Doc lowers her mug, “Yes?”

“I’ve been having trouble sleeping this week,” I state, “I think it’s just me having trouble adjusting to new surroundings, but I figured I’d mention it.”

Doc smiles and says, “It’s good that you did,” looking thoughtful, takes a moment to think before sighing and saying, “I hate to ask this, but have you had any bad nightmares this week?”

I nod, “Yes, Thursday night. I spent the rest of the night in my closet. Overall I’ve only had a few decent nights’ sleep this last week, and one of them was spent sitting next to my nightlight.”

Doc absorbs this information for a moment, then asks, “How do you feel now?”

“Surprisingly rested, I think,” I reply, “I went to bed early last night, and I’ve been trying to wear myself out with swimming, club practice, and even PE, and I think it might finally be catching up to me.”

“So just general fatigue is all you’ve felt, nothing else?”

“Nothing else,” I reply, wondering what she could mean before connecting the dots, “No withdrawal systems, if that’s what you’re asking.”

Doc grimaces briefly before smiling, “It is something we need to be mindful about. It sounds like you’re doing rather well, believe it or not.”

I raise an eyebrow, “Really?”

The Doc smiles and nods, “It sounds like your sleep issues are anxiety related, so it could just be difficulty adjusting. Has it been a problem every night?”

“No, just most of them,” I reply, and sip my tea before adding, “I guess it just seemed worse in my head than it really was.”

Especially since one of those nights was because of some really bad takeout. Well, bad for my digestion –the food itself was good. In a painful sort of way.

“Not necessarily,” Doc states, bringing my mind back on track, “you were concerned your sleep issues might be a problem, so you brought it up. That’s a good thing.”

I nod and smile lightly to myself. I like that I have enough control over my body that I can tell if something might be wrong with it. I know it sounds strange and has actually been the case for a few months, but it’s still something that takes me by surprise every now and then.

To keep the body in good health is a duty... otherwise we shall not be able to keep our mind strong and clear.

+++
Next Chapter

I know anxiety screws up my sleep.
Last edited by Hoitash on Fri Oct 09, 2015 5:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"Who are you, that do not know your history?" -Ulysses
Misha Time: United States of Misha Meet the Hakamichis
Awesome, served on the rocks: Hisao and Kenji- Master Detectives! (Check out the Archive for more!)
I wrote a book! Brythain edited it! If you like mystery and history please consider: A Sister's Habit
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Re: The First Week –A Soon-hee Story (Updated 10/09)

Post by Hoitash » Fri Oct 09, 2015 5:05 pm

There is a school, in Sendai, Japan,
The land of the Rising Sun,
And it’s been the ruin of many a poor boy,
And God I know I’m one.

Next Chapter

Chapter Twenty: Lay of the Land

The rest of my therapy session is uneventful, and after we decide to stick to that time and day for sessions, I make my way back to my room. I have to finish the homework I was supposed to finish yesterday before I can spend the day either reading, online, or both.

It’s warm out today, with a clear, bright sky that hurts my eyes a bit for a minute before I adjust to it. You’d think someone whose eyes have become sensitive to normal lighting would remember their sunglasses, but apparently not.

Guess I’m still not used to being outside all that much.

I pass a few students heading down into town or just wandering to and fro around the grounds, though I don’t recognize any of them. They all seem to have plans of their own as they seem to walk with purpose, although their plans could be as simple as mine of returning to my room.

My stomach growls and I stop in my tracks. I have made a tragic error.

I haven’t had lunch.

I must really be out of it. I should head to the cafeteria.

Do I have to? It is the weekend… I wonder if Maiko would want to go into town.

Actually, knowing her, there’s a good chance she’s pounding on my door right now. Her passionate way of doing things probably annoys some people, but it seems to be a good counter to the sense of apathy I’ve developed.

I wonder if it’s deliberate on her part, or if she’s just naturally energetic despite her condition.

That thought sticks with me until I enter the girl’s dormitory, where I’m stopped by the sound of Setsuko’s keyboard. After a few quick steps towards the common room I confirm my earlier suspicion that not only is Setsuko playing, she also has an audience.

Well, just Maiya. The second-year is just inside the door and to its right, watching Setsuko as she once again throws herself into her music. Sakura’s on the couch watching TV again, and must have seen me step into the threshold, because she turns her head and nods to me in a brief greeting.

I return the nod and glance at Maiya, but she’s too absorbed in Setsuko’s playing to notice me. The piece is fluid with a maudlin and ostentatious sense to it that sounds, based on my limited knowledge, like something of Wagner’s.

I could see Setsuko as a valkyrie.

When the piece comes to an end Maiya and I applaud, which brings Setsuko out of the zen-like state she seems to enter when she plays. It also let’s Maiya know that I’m here, as she jumps a little in her chair and glances my way when she hears my applause.

Setsuko turns to me as well, looking a little surprised to see me as she says, “Hello, Soon-hee; I didn’t see you come in. Maiko was looking for you earlier. I believe she intends to invite you to lunch in town.”

Called it.

“Thanks,” I say, bowing slightly as I add, “I better go see her before she knocks my door down trying to get an answer.”

Setsuko smirks and turns to Maiya, asking if she has any requests while I head upstairs.

As soon as I enter the hallway that houses our rooms, I see Maiko rapping on my door and patiently waiting for all of three seconds before pounding on my door again. I really hope she hasn’t been there long, or Nakajima might get upset enough to come out of her room, if she’s even there.

“Maiko,” I call out to her as I approach, “How long have you been outside my door?”

Maiko whirls to face me, notices it’s me, smiles, and says, “Oh, there you are! I was wondering why you weren’t answering your door, but I figured you had headphones on or were at lunch or something.”

Or something.

“Okay…” I say, “but how long have you been there?”

Maiko shrugs, “Not long. I came by to ask if you wanted to go to lunch because the book club couldn’t meet for medical reasons so I went to the library and after a few minutes I thought you might wanna go into town to eat and check it out the town I mean but I figured you had already eaten lunch by then but I wanted to make sure because I hadn’t yet so I figured we could eat lunch together or grab a snack if you already had because by the time we got down the hill you’d probably wanna eat again.”

How does she do that? She talks faster than Miya on a caffeine high.

Maiko patiently waits for my food-deprived brain to process the data stream that passes for talking with her. Once I’ve caught up, I reply, “…I haven’t had lunch yet, actually, and I was wondering, if it wasn’t any trouble I mean, if you’d want to go into town for lunch?”

Maiko grins, “Sounds great. Do you mind if I invite Setsuko? She likes to go into town on weekends to walk around and get away from the school.”

I nod, relaxing from the unrealized tension of waiting for an answer, “Sure.”

Maiko’s grin widens, “Cool, I’ll head down and ask her.”

And with that, Maiko heads downstairs. While she does that, I head into my room, drop off my bag, shove a pack of Pocky sticks in my mouth to hold me over, grab my sunglasses, and change into some day clothes. Kenji said the townsfolk are used to the students wandering around in their uniforms, but I still want to wear something else. Granted, blue jeans and a long sleeved shirt arguably make me stand out more, but at least I look less like some weird cross-dressing kook and more the shrimpy over-toned tomboy that I am. I also throw on my uniform jacket, since it’ll probably be cooler in town and on the way back here.

Once I’ve changed, I take a couple moments to clear my mind and mentally prepare for going into town. In theory it should be easy, but even though Kenji and Miya took me there before, it’s pretty much unfamiliar territory.

At least you won’t be alone.

By the time I leave my dorm room, Maiko and Setsuko are waiting outside Setsuko’s door. Setsuko is closing and locking hers as I do the same with mine, and like me she’s changed into street clothes. Unlike me, she’s wearing a long, flowing brown dress and kimono jacket, both of which match her wooden cane. Maiko’s still in her uniform, although she somehow found the time to peel off her tights.

When she finishes locking her door, Setsuko turns to me and asks, “You ready, Sonny?”

I nod.
"Who are you, that do not know your history?" -Ulysses
Misha Time: United States of Misha Meet the Hakamichis
Awesome, served on the rocks: Hisao and Kenji- Master Detectives! (Check out the Archive for more!)
I wrote a book! Brythain edited it! If you like mystery and history please consider: A Sister's Habit
"You are absolutely insane. And entertaining." -griffon8

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Re: The First Week –A Soon-hee Story (Updated 10/09)

Post by Hoitash » Fri Oct 09, 2015 5:05 pm

Part II:

“Then let’s go!” Maiko declares, and leads the way down the hall.

Setsuko sighs and gestures after her with her free hand, “Fortunately she don’t move very fast, so we can catch up to her easy enough.”

I nod and start walking, Setsuko keeping an easy pace next to me.

“Have you had lunch yet?” I ask, more to say something than anything else.

“Nah, I was stuck politickin’,” Setsuko replies, “Some ijiet decided to have the Club President’s meeting on Saturdays, so I spent the hour after class explainin’ to the new moron in charge of the music club why his budget wasn’t adjusted this year. I swear they put him in charge just to spite me.”

I couldn’t help but sigh, “There are far too much politics at this school.”

“People are schemers and plotters by nature,” Setsuko remarks, “Comes with being social creatures.”

Wow, she is like Kenji. In some regards.

I nod, conceding the point.

Maiko’s waiting for us by the elevator, and we take it down to the bottom floor, walk out onto the grounds, and then out the main gate down the road.

A couple of students are waiting by the bus stop, and one of them waves to Setsuko, who waves back. A few other students a bit behind us are also on their way into town, and they overtake us as Maiko is setting the pace. Even though she seems to have complete control over her condition, she’s not a fast walker. I think she likes to take the time to look around when she walks, because her head is constantly moving.

I have to focus a bit to keep my pace slow, both because of her and our senior. Though Setsuko can keep a rapid pace on level ground, the steepness of the road seems to be slowing her down a bit, and she appears to be putting more focus into her steps then I’m used to seeing.

The downside of this slow pace is it gives me plenty of time to see the expansive landscape. The town below, mountains somewhere in the distance, and the vast, partly cloudy sky above are almost suffocating in their expansiveness.

I suppress a gulp at the view and fix my eyes on the back of Maiko’s head, my sunglasses shaking a bit from the rapid movement.

Setsuko leans over a bit towards me and mutters, “You okay?”

Why are you so damn observant?

I could just lie and say I’m fine, but that wouldn’t really be fair to Setsuko; for one, she does seem legitimately concerned, and for another, I’m reasonably sure she won’t give me shit for it –pardon my language, please.

Besides, I’m also pretty sure she could tell if I was lying, and I’d rather not lie to one of the few people I’ve gotten to know in the school.

“I’m a bit of an agoraphobe,” I reply, “Too used to being inside. It’s fine.”

Setsuko raises an eyebrow at me, but doesn’t say anything.

“So,” Maiko calls back to us, “Where d’you guys wanna eat? Did you wanna do any shopping afterward?”

“I was going to go to the convenience store for some things,” I state.

“Yeah, I need some stuff, too,” Setsuko says, “I don’t like the idea of eating before shopping, but I’m hungry and I bet poor Sonny’s starving.”

I open my mouth to deflect her concern, but my stomach decides to reply for me.

“Well that settles that,” Maiko remarks while I stare at the ground in embarrassment, “So where we gonna go? And please don’t say-”

“The Shanghai,” Setsuko states, “They got the best tea in town.”

Maiko groans, “We always go there! They don’t even have menus!”

“Well you don’t like The Beijing and nowhere else has good prices or tea,” Setsuko drawls, “Sonny, you got a preference?”

I’ve been in this town twice and went to the pizza place both times… but I appreciate being included.

I look up from the ground and shrug, “I don’t really care. As long as they have good food and decent prices.”

“Don’t worry about cost,” Maiko states, “I’m paying. I owe Setsuko from last trimester, and I owe you for always spraying food on your face.”

“You really aughtta do somethin’ about that,” Setsuko remarks.

Maiko spins around and sticks her tongue out at the senior before resuming her descent.

Setsuko smirks and shakes her head.

Even though I’ve only been in town twice, I already have a basic idea of the layout. Kenji pointed out the Shanghai and the convenience store while we were here, so I have a rough idea where I’m going. Even though Maiko’s leading the way, I like to have at least a basic understand of my surroundings.

Would that be the rat in me or the cat?

The Shanghai is an old-fashioned looking wooden building. I almost expect to see some kimono-clad merchants discussing business over tea inside. When Maiko opens the door and we step in, though, the only patrons are a few scattered groups of students and an elderly couple near the back.

A young man in a waiter’s outfit is standing inside. When he notices us enter he bows and says, “Welcome to The Shanghai! Will it be just the three of you?”

Maiko nods, “Yep. Do you have any window seats left?”

The waiter glances to our right and nods, “We do. If you’ll please follow me, I’ll show you to your table.”

The waiter leads us to a window booth near the front of the shop –funny how the window seats are near the windows, I know- across from a couple of students who are rapidly signing to each other. One of them waves to grab the waiter’s attention, and he gives a quick nod of acknowledgment before turning his attention back to us.

Maiko sits by the window, and Setsuko sits next to her and starts rubbing her leg, messaging the spot where her prosthetic meets flesh. I sit across from Setsuko, for obvious reasons.

“Can I get you anything to drink?” the waiter asks.

Setsuko orders green tea, I order orange juice, and Maiko asks for Dr. Pepper.

The waiter smirks, “We still don’t have that, Nagita-san.”

Maiko sighs and shrugs, “Worth a shot. I’ll have a Coke, then.”

The waiter nods, bows, and turns to the table that had waved for him earlier.

“Hey Sonny,” Setsuko says as she stops messaging her leg, “I been meanin’ to ask you, how are Ataru and Hachi treatin’ you in the club?”

It actually takes me a minute to realize who she’s talking about, because I barely remembered the Captain’s first name.

Oh, right; they’re in the same class.

“They’re fine,” I reply, though I can’t help but ask, “Is the Captain always so hammy?”

Setsuko chuckles, “Yeah, and bein’ called Captain all the time don’t help none, but what can you do? He’s been anglin’ for head of the club since last year, and honestly it suits him,” Setsuko frowns for a moment, “Never tell him I said that, though –he’d never let me hear the end of it.”

I nod, and, concerned for the trip back, ask her, “Is your leg okay?”

Setsuko nods, “Yeah, jus’ some minor discomfort from the hill’s steepness. I’ll be fine.”

The waiter shows up before anyone can say anything further, handing out our drinks and asking if we were ready to order food.

“Could we have a bit longer to think it over?” Maiko asks.

“Of course,” the waiter bows and departs.

“Ugh,” Maiko grumbles and slouches into her chair, “I never know what to get when we come here.”

Setsuko sips her tea, her steely eyes glancing at the second-year, “What’s it matter? You always order the same thing anyhow.”

Maiko pouts, “Not always. Muscles, any idea what you’ll get?”

Not a clue.

“I haven’t really thought about it,” I reply, “Probably a sandwich of some sort.”

“They have turkey here,” Setsuko states, “and it comes with soup.”

“I like soup,” I state.

“Soup is good,” Maiko concurs. Glancing at Setsuko, she asks, “What’re you gonna get?”

The senior shrugs and replies, “Somethin’ with chicken, I think. Or maybe beef stew.”

The waiter returns a few moments later, and we place our orders; I get a turkey sandwich and the soup of the day, Maiko orders a hamburger, and Setsuko gets a chicken sandwich.

When the waiter leaves to place our orders, Setsuko asks Maiko how the book club is doing. Maiko’s ranting, rambling reply lasts until the food arrives, which saves us getting flecked with it while she eats, at least.

Probably Setsuko’s plan from the start.

Setsuko has a very calculating mind and a good heart. She’s also more grounded in reality than Maiko, who seems to get a bit too involved in the complexities and nuances of her reading. I’m starting to wonder if it’s a mental tool to help with her condition, or if she’s just naturally like that.

Or maybe some combination of the two.

Since we’re eating lunch somewhat late, we don’t talk while we focus on inhaling our meals. Well, I inhale, Maiko chews like a rodent going through cables, and Setsuko eats normally, the dainty rich kid persona keeping her manners in check while her accent has free rein.
"Who are you, that do not know your history?" -Ulysses
Misha Time: United States of Misha Meet the Hakamichis
Awesome, served on the rocks: Hisao and Kenji- Master Detectives! (Check out the Archive for more!)
I wrote a book! Brythain edited it! If you like mystery and history please consider: A Sister's Habit
"You are absolutely insane. And entertaining." -griffon8

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Re: The First Week –A Soon-hee Story (Updated 10/09)

Post by Hoitash » Fri Oct 09, 2015 5:06 pm

Part III:

When we’re done, Maiko sighs and says, “If anyone wants dessert, feel free –they have really good pie here, too.”

“I’ll need more tea, then,” Setsuko muses, staring down at her empty cup, “Which reminds me, I should stop by the tea shop after the convenience store –I gotta get somethin’ besides green tea if y’all are gonna be comin’ over.”

“Implying you’ll let me into your room,” Maiko teases.

Setsuko smirks, “Ask nicely and pay your proper respects to Great-Grandpappy, and I might.”

Maiko narrows her eyes at the senior, “Or what, you gonna sic the occult club on me again?”

Setsuko frowns at my fellow second year, “Be nice to them, they’s fine folk.”

Maiko rolls her eyes and grumbles, “They think Muscles is a vengeful spirit.”

Setsuko smirks and slips into her refined accent for a moment as she asks, “And have you any evidence to the contrary?”

You know, it’s not so much that my participation isn’t necessary, it’s just they have their own routine worked out, so I’m kind of extraneous.

Maiko raises an eyebrow at the senior, “Do you know any spirits that eat as much as her?”

Setsuko opens her mouth, closes it, and taps her chin thoughtfully, “…Well, one, but she’s blonde and a bit taller,” she glances to me and adds, “No offense meant, Sonny.”

“None taken,” I say, “Whatever rumors the occult club churns out can’t be worse then what the archery club might be plotting.”

Maiko turns to me, eyes startling me as they suddenly blaze weary fury, “What did those blue blooded bitches do to you?”

Shrinking back slightly from her anger, I reply, “Nothing. One of them stealth insulted me at lunch a few days ago. She knew our Temporary Vice Captain.”

“He got you sayin’ it, too, huh?” Setsuko sighs, “Anywho, like I told you before, don’t worry about the archery club –they’re all bark. ‘Sides, they’re too scared to tick off their advisor to try anythin’,” Setsuko grins, “She might seem sweet, but you do not wanna piss her off.”

Maiko sighs and sips her Coke to calm herself down, “I just don’t like that they think they can get away with shit just because they have the names and the awards to back it up.”

“They know their limits,” Setsuko declares.

“Yeah, which is almost as bad.”

“No sense worrying about it,” I state, “It is what it is.”

Maiko raises an eyebrow at me, “You seem to be taking it rather well.”

I shrug, “I’m used to it. Why get worked up over it? People are ignorant and easily frightened by that which they don’t understand. No sense getting angry over something beyond my control.”

Not that if something does happen I’ll just take it lying down. Those days are over.

Maiko slowly nods, “That’s an enlightened way to see it. Reminds me of Khan: “You reap what you sow, Artyom: force answers force, war breeds war, and death only brings death. To break this vicious circle one must do more than act without any thought or doubt.

Setsuko rolls her eyes and stares longingly down at her empty cup. The waiter comes by, we order some pie and more tea, eat the pie, Maiko pays, and we leave.

Once we’re standing outside, I turn to Setsuko and ask, “Which is closer, the tea shop or the convenience store?”

“Convenience store,” she replies, “You two can go on while I go to the shop, if you like.”

Maiko glances at me, and I nod; I don’t like the idea of leaving Setsuko on principle, but I do need to get my homework done, and this will save time.

Besides, she has a weapon.

“Okay, but we’ll wait for you outside the Mart,” Maiko states, “Unless you forgot what happened your first month here?”

Setsuko sighs, “Knew I shouldn’t a told you about that. I’ll be back in a bit. Any requests?”

“What you normally get is fine,” Maiko states.

I start to nod, but pause midway through the gesture to mention, “Same here, but I do have a ragweed allergy, so please be careful if you get anything with chamomile.”

Setsuko nods, “Gotcha. See you in a bit, then.”

And with that, she heads down the road deeper into town, while Maiko and I backtrack a bit to get to the convenience store.

“I hope Setsuko and I aren’t too much for you,” Maiko says on the way, “We’ve known each since I came to Yamaku –she introduced herself to me the day I moved in, and we kinda hit it off from there. Her having the Director’s old room was just a bonus, really.”

“I still find it odd how fond you are of Director Nakai’s writing,” I remark.

Maiko shrugs, “She has really good characterization and a lot of Earn Your Happy Endings. Besides,” Maiko grins, ‘if all you read is depressing stuff, you end up crawling under your bed and sucking your thumb in the fetal position all day.”

“Fair enough,” I say, thinking happy thoughts to avoid any bad ones.

Bunnies are happy. Or kittens. I like kittens… Setsuko mentioned Saber… lion cubs. There we go; cute, adorable lion cubs playing in the grass.

Getting to the convenience store is easy, but it takes some time for me to get everything I need. Besides oranges and Pocky sticks, I also buy some basic cooking ingredients so I can make my own lunches every now and then. Maiko buys some instant lunches she can toss into the microwave before leaving for classes, which strikes me as incredibly unhealthy, and I can’t help but bring it up.

“You really like those?” I ask.

Maiko shrugs, “Not really, but I’m not much of a cook.”

I nod and consider making some extra lunches for her. It’d be better than that instant junk, and I owe her for partnering with me for science class.

Besides, cooking might help clear my head.

One step at a time; first make sure you can cook for yourself, then worry about making things difficult.

By the time we leave the store, Setsuko’s on her way toward us. She’s holding a small bag with her free hand, and when she gets closer Maiko lifts one of her smaller bags and dangles it a bit.

“I got your things for you so we can go back if you’re ready,” she says.

Setsuko grins and stops a few paces short of us, “Much obliged, Maiko. I’m good to go,” she glances to me and asks, “what about you, Sonny? Anywhere else you were fixin’ to go?”

I shake my head, “I’m good. I have to get back and do some homework.”

Maiko nods, “Me, too. All this book club drama has made my own workload back up.”

“Well if you didn’t read so much…” Setsuko teases.

Maiko sighs, “I get enough of that from my own class rep; I don’t need it from you, too, Sempai.”

Setsuko raises her cane hand in mock supplication, “Ooh, now I’m scared. C’mon, the sooner we get back the sooner Sonny can eat dinner.”

I raise my eyebrow, “I do more than eat, you know.”

Still, dinner would be nice. After homework. Or maybe during.

I spend the walk back up the hill mentally organizing the rest of my day, while Maiko asks Setsuko about the tea shop. Our senior is leading the way this time, though all our paces are pretty even; the steep way up has slowed Setsuko’s normally fluid pace, Maiko’s droopy eyes and slightly woozy pace make me think the day has gotten to her more than she’d ever admit, and I’m loaded down with bags and anxiety over my Japanese homework.

Fortunately I like having a lot on my mind, and it’s really thanks to Setsuko and Maiko that I have so much to think about. I think I might be getting the hang of this being a functioning human being thing.

O Mistress mine, where are you roaming? /O, stay and hear! Your true love's coming /That can sing both high and low /Trip no further, pretty sweeting /Journeys end in lovers meeting /Every wise man`s son doth know.

+++
Next Chapter

Is it obvious yet that Twelfth Night is my favorite Shakespeare comedy?

We got one more chapter left folks, then I can move on to aiding my editor in his efforts to save the world from zombies.

Also the Christmas Special, since I finished the New Year’s Special days ago. And three or or four novellas, but I’ve stopped counting those by now.
Last edited by Hoitash on Fri Oct 16, 2015 1:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Mirage_GSM
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Re: The First Week –A Soon-hee Story (Updated 10/09)

Post by Mirage_GSM » Sat Oct 10, 2015 7:15 pm

Also the Christmas Special, since I finished the New Year’s Special days ago. And three or or four novellas, but I’ve stopped counting those by now.
I was going to comment on how you manage to keep TWO stories updating regularly at the same time, but now I'm not sure why I should even bother...
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