Odd Friendship: A Hanako and Rin Route

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psyxypher
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Odd Friendship: A Hanako and Rin Route

Post by psyxypher » Tue Jul 03, 2018 8:00 pm

After seeing a flurry of fanart depicting Rin and Hanako together on the Reddit, I felt inspired to write this fic. The premise is that Hanako meets Rin whilst the latter is eating in the Tea Room. I plan to make this an entire route and hopefully maintain a constant update schedule (the idea is every 10-14 days). I'm pretty new to writing, so feel free to give criticism. And don't be afraid to twist the knife. :mrgreen:

EDIT: Though I do ask you provide advice on how to improve, because just telling me what's wrong isn't going to help me improve half the time.

Also, I swear this isn't related to An Unusual Friendship by Hanako Fancopter. I didn't even know that existed till I made an account here to post today.

Act 1: Coalescence
Chapter 1: Chance Encounter
Chapter 2: Helping Hand(s)
Chapter 3: Hand, Foot, Heart, Soul
Chapter 4: Two Kinds of Fruit
Chapter 5: Smooth Painter

Story starts at Hisao’s first day at Yamaku, end of classes.

~~~~Hanako Ikezawa~~~~

The rest of the class cheers loudly as the bell signalling the end of classes rings. I just breathe a sigh of relief, happy to get this day over with. I’m always on edge in class, having to be around so many people at once. I watch as the students exit the classroom at their own pace, groups of friends pairing up for whatever plans they had today while others go to get a head start on homework.

I gaze over to the new transfer student, who has found himself in Shizune and Misha’s clutches. Deep down, I want to approach him. He’s a new face, a new opportunity for a friend. I regret not taking that chance.

Once every other student has left the room, I gather my things and get ready to leave. Lilly and I have plans to meet in the Tea Room, but she told me earlier today that she’d be held up by Class Representative work. Normally, she’d come to room 3-3 and we’d walk together. I guess I’m making that trip alone.

Before I make it to the door, Mutou’s voice stops me. “Ikezawa, before you leave, I wish to speak to you. Don’t worry, you’re not in trouble.”

I freeze mid step, then turn around, looking at him. He’s stopped looking through papers and is looking directly at me. “Yes?” I weakly reply, my mind still focused on getting out of here as soon as possible.

“I’ve noticed you’ve been on edge lately. Is there anything I can do to help?” he asks. He’s holding the stack of papers in his hands, parallel to the desk. It’s clear his attention is entirely on me at the moment.

“N-n-no.” I stutter out, deliberately avoiding eye contact with Mutou.

“Remember Hanako, all of the staff here are willing to help whenever we can. We care about the students. We wouldn’t have taken this job if we didn’t.” he says. I’ve heard that speech many times before and it’s given me mixed feeling every time. This time, I decide to open up.

“W-well...the new student today…” I start saying, careful not to trip on my words. “I...w-wanted to try and make friends with him. I...was too scared to approach him.”

Mutou gives a second to mull this over. “I can say one thing. You have to learn to take opportunities. If you want to make friends, you need to seize the opportunity when it appears.” he says.

I just nod. “Th-thank you, sir.” I say, before walking out the door. Mutou might not be the most people oriented person, but his advice and wisdom is helpful. As I walk into the hallway, I make a promise to myself to take it to heart.

~~~~

Everyone was in a rush to get out of class after a tiring Monday, so my trip to the tea room was uneventful. Lilly and I often used the tea room because it was the only unused room in the building. No one else ever used it for-

My heart jumps as a meet the green eyes of another girl, staring right at me. There’s a long, drawn out silence as the two of us lock eyes.

“Hello.” I finally squeeze out.

“Hello as well.” the girl replies. I take a moment to look her over. She has auburn hair, she’s wearing a boy’s uniform, and lacks arms; her sleeves are tied into knots where her elbows would be. She’s holding a fork between her big toe and index toe. There’s probably a lunch box around but I don’t break eye contact to look. I know I’ve seen her around before but I never got her name.

Say something. Say anything. Just say something! I scream internally, trying to force my body to obey my commands. You already lost a chance to make a friend today, don’t lose another!

“I-didn’t know a-anybody e-else w-would be using this room.” I stutter out. With that, I feel every tense muscle in my body relax. I guess my body finally realized that this girl isn’t some kind of living statue that’ll snap my neck the moment I blink.

The girl in question turns around, her legs now hanging off the table. “I was.” she replies. “Though no one else was, which is why I came here.”

“I, uh...usually come here for tea.” I state. “With my friend Lilly.”

The girl looks at me, her eyes focusing in on me like the lens of a camera or the eyes of a chameleon. Another awkward few seconds pass before she speaks again. “Can I stay?” she asks.

Technically, I have no right to ask Rin to leave. And while I could, I’d be fooling no one if I thought that I could muster up the guts to actually do it. So naturally, I replied with the only verbal response I could reasonably give.

“S-sure.”

“That’s good.” the odd girl replies. “The tables in here are nice. Sturdy, and comfy too.” with that, she immediately goes back to eating her lunch. I realize that if she’s going to be staying, I may as well introduce myself.

“I’m Hanako...Hanako Ikezawa.” I sputter out. This gets her attention, and she turns her head back to me.

“I’m Rin. Rin Tezuka. Call me Rin.” she replies, smiling.

Part of me wants to run, to leave this room and just retreat somewhere, to one of the many places I’d go whenever I wanted to get away from the world. But I don’t. I promised myself I would take Mutou’s advice to heart. I wanted to make new friends, and now an opportunity has just jumped into my lap.

“Besides, this cute girl doesn’t seem like she’s unfriendly. Just weird. Sorta like how you are. The two of you would fit together perfectly!” I told myself. Looks like I’m doing this.

Rin goes right back to eating, but she kept turning her head over to look at me, as if she was expecting me to say something else.

“W-would y-you like s-some tea?” I force out, trying my best to hide my anxiety. Since Rin is here, I may as well offer her some tea.

She pauses, looking in my general direction but not at me. “Never tried it.” she said, firing off words rapidly. “Always too hot. Tea is weird. It’s dried leaves. Leaves aren’t tasty, but tea is.” she continues, before she moves her head again, this time looking right at me.

“I’ll have some tea please. But I need it cooled down.”

“I can do that.” I say, walking over to the gas stove, adding water to the kettle and turning the stove onto the lowest setting. “This is going well.” I think to myself, not sure whether I actually believe it or if I’m trying to fool myself into doing so.

Rin and I sit in silence while we wait for the water to boil. Rin has taken the time to finish off her lunch. I pull out my book and start reading. Neither of us says anything to the other.

The water had yet to boil by the time that I heard the distinct noise of Lilly’s cane down tapping against the walls and floor. She walks into the room shortly after, carrying her practiced ‘dignified lady’ expression.

“H-hello Lilly!” I almost shout. Something about being with Lilly makes all of my tension melt away. I did however still remember that Rin is here, and I should make sure Lilly was aware of that fact. “W-we, uh, have a guest. Her name is Rin.”

I watch as Lilly’s facial expression drops, the same expression she gave when she heard a loud noise. She quickly regains her composure, turning to a more concerned expression. “Rin Tezuka?” she asked.

“That’s me.” Rin replies. “I don’t think there are any other Rins here. And I don’t have clones. But if I did, how would we tell which one was real?” she continues, starting to drabble on about theoretical scenarios involving her and clones of herself.

“Did Lilly’s eye just twitch?”

Rin’s ranting is cut short by the noise of water boiling from the teapot. Perfect excuse for me to defuse this before it starts.

“W-who wants tea?”


Next

Thank you to my proofreaders /u/Deadmissionary and /u/Arodyrok. And now Hanako Fancopter, it seems.
Last edited by psyxypher on Wed Aug 15, 2018 12:31 am, edited 8 times in total.
To give you an idea of what kind of person I am, I'm friendly, talkative, and very good at Cards Against Humanity.

My Rin/Hanako fanfic, Odd Friendship. You'd be doing me a favor if you read it.

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Re: Odd Friendship: A Hanako and Rin Route

Post by Hanako Fancopter » Tue Jul 03, 2018 10:15 pm

ayyyyy it's another one! I fully endorse more fics that are more about the girls and less about Hisao x whoever. You don't have much yet but it seems good so far. I'll be interested in seeing what they bond over and how they keep contact.

You also have some lingering stylistic issues, most notably, you switch between past and present tense mid-story. You should pick one and stick to it.

psyxypher
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Re: Odd Friendship: A Hanako and Rin Route

Post by psyxypher » Tue Jul 03, 2018 10:18 pm

Hanako Fancopter wrote:
Tue Jul 03, 2018 10:15 pm
ayyyyy it's another one! I fully endorse more fics that are more about the girls and less about Hisao x whoever. You don't have much yet but it seems good so far. I'll be interested in seeing what they bond over and how they keep contact.

You also have some lingering stylistic issues, most notably, you switch between past and present tense mid-story. You should pick one and stick to it.
I did not notice that, but it sounds like something I'd do.

Also, thank you for commenting. It shows me people are noticing. And the advice is critical.
To give you an idea of what kind of person I am, I'm friendly, talkative, and very good at Cards Against Humanity.

My Rin/Hanako fanfic, Odd Friendship. You'd be doing me a favor if you read it.

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Re: Odd Friendship: A Hanako and Rin Route

Post by Hanako Fancopter » Tue Jul 03, 2018 10:27 pm

One section where it's pretty apparent is here:
She’s really direct… I think to myself. Part of me wants to run, to leave this room and just retreat somewhere, to one of the many places I’d go whenever I wanted to get away from the world. But I don’t. I promised myself I would take Mutou’s advice to heart. I wanted to make new friends, and now an opportunity had just jumped into my lap.

“Besides, this cute girl didn’t seem like she’s unfriendly. Just weird. Sorta like how you are. The two of you would fit together perfectly!” I told myself. Looks like I’m doing this.

Rin had already gone back to eating, but she kept turning her head over to look at me, as if she was expecting me to say something else.
It starts in present tense then switches to past starting with "now an opportunity had just jumped into my lap." It might should read "now an opportunity has jumped into my lap" instead. Going from there, "this cute girl didn't seem like" should be "this cute girl doesn't seem like," "I told myself" should be "I tell myself," etc. Assuming you end up picking present tense, of course. I think more of it is written in present tense than past.

I'll give it a more thorough proofreading if you want. I have a soft spot for your premise >.>

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Re: Odd Friendship: A Hanako and Rin Route

Post by psyxypher » Tue Jul 03, 2018 10:49 pm

Hanako Fancopter wrote:
Tue Jul 03, 2018 10:27 pm

I'll give it a more thorough proofreading if you want. I have a soft spot for your premise >.>
Blah, apparently my proof readers didn't catch these. To be fair, they weren't focusing on the grammar as much as the actual content of the writing itself.

Also, I could use more proofreaders! Especially since one of them is going on vacation around the 15th.

EDIT: Actually I'd say the first one was probably intentional and the second was an actual error. It will be noted in the future.
To give you an idea of what kind of person I am, I'm friendly, talkative, and very good at Cards Against Humanity.

My Rin/Hanako fanfic, Odd Friendship. You'd be doing me a favor if you read it.

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Re: Odd Friendship: A Hanako and Rin Route

Post by Hanako Fancopter » Tue Jul 03, 2018 11:37 pm

Alright, here's more of a proofread for you. Feel free to make as many of these changes as you want, or none of them, just my observations.
The rest of the class cheers loudly the bell signalling the end of classes rings.
I think you can use a "for" between "loudly" and "the," and remove the word "rings" from the end. So it becomes "The rest of the class cheers loudly for the bell signalling the end of classes."
As everyone was in a rush to get out of class after a tiring Monday, so my trip to the tea room was uneventful. Lilly and I often used the tea room because it was the only unused room in the building. No one else ever used it for-
Some past tense here. The first sentence is also constructed awkwardly. You could simply remove the "As" that starts the sentence and it reads better.
My heart jumps as a meet the green eyes of another girl, staring right at me.
I think it's supposed to be "I" instead of "a" between "as" and "meet."
“Neither did I.” the girl replies. “That’s why I came here.” she turned around, her legs now hanging off the side of the desk. “The tables are also nice for sitting.”
Past tense; the first sentence uses "replies" (present tense) then the second uses "turned" (past).
“I guess I was wrong about no one being here, then.” the girl said, trying to gauge whether this was a bad thing or not.
Past tense verb.
“I’m Rin. Tezuka Rin. Rin Tezuka. But you can call me Rin.” the odd girl replied. “I won’t shake hands with you, but at least we know who we are now.”

“That’s nice.” Rin added after a beat.
Past tense.
Rin had already gone back to eating, but she kept turning her head over to look at me, as if she was expecting me to say something else.

“W-would y-you like s-some tea?” I force out, trying my best to hide my anxiety. If Rin was here, I may as well offer her some tea.

She pauses, looking in my general direction but not at me. “Never tried it.” she said, firing off words rapidly.
Past tense. I think the first bit might read better as "Rin goes right back to eating," so then it reads "Rin goes right back to eating, but she keeps turning her head..." and goes from there. I also think the second sentence of the second paragraph is better as something like "Since Rin is here, I may as well offer her some tea."
Rin and I sit in silence while we wait for the water to boil. Rin has taken the time to finish off her lunch. I pull out my book and start reading. Neither of us said anything to the other.
Every verb from this point to the end, I think, is past tense. Again, I'm sort of just assuming that you would go with present tense, since that's how the story starts off. You could also do the reverse and switch all the present tense verbs over to past.

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Re: Odd Friendship: A Hanako and Rin Route

Post by psyxypher » Tue Jul 03, 2018 11:56 pm

Alright, made those edits. Thanks again, you're now credited as a proofreader (even if it was after the fact). You're part of the team. For better or for worse.
To give you an idea of what kind of person I am, I'm friendly, talkative, and very good at Cards Against Humanity.

My Rin/Hanako fanfic, Odd Friendship. You'd be doing me a favor if you read it.

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Re: Odd Friendship: A Hanako and Rin Route

Post by QuietlySomething » Wed Jul 04, 2018 12:41 am

First things first, welcome to the forum! Seems like we have been getting more new faces around here lately, or maybe that's just me.

So this is a criticism I have seen leveled at a lot of different fics and have had leveled at myself as well, and while I think one should have a degree of leniency for creative liberty, I do feel the need to say that the first thing that jumps out at me here is that Hanako doesn't feel in-character. It's not really severe, but despite her stammering she is really a lot more social than one would expect her to be, especially with someone she is meeting for the very first time and especially with someone as alienating and socially inept as Rin. That fact is the very thing that makes Rin and Hanako seem to be such unlikely companions in the first place, and I think if you're going to write a fic with that premise, you need to take special care not to force that relationship too quickly or it is inevitable that they will feel out of character like they (mostly Hanako, admittedly) do here. It is a stretch for me to believe that these two would even want to speak to each other a second time let alone that they would be fast friends... so I would recommend a bit of a slower pace moving forward.

With all that out of the way, the writing itself is just fine and I think Rin's dialogue is pretty solid without being overdone. I also feel like I should point out that I very much appreciate that Hanako does not stammer in her own narration & thoughts (something I have seen done numerous times- and never seen done well).
My little grammatical nitpick would be that you end sentences in dialogue using periods when you should be using commas. If you are leading into a dialogue tag, end the sentence in a comma ("Hello," he said. as opposed to "Hello." he said.) End the quote with a period if there's no dialogue tag following the sentence (he said, "Hello.")

It's a neat premise; I think you have a lot of room to make something interesting here. I'm curious to see how you develop this from here on out. Cheers!

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Re: Odd Friendship: A Hanako and Rin Route

Post by Hanako Fancopter » Wed Jul 04, 2018 1:17 am

I thought Hanako's characterization was fine, personally. Though I'm highly sympathetic to your interpretation of her as someone that wants to socialize but simply struggles with it, as opposed to someone who actually doesn't want to socialize in the first place. I think your writing did a good enough job portraying that, even when she is trying to make friends, she still pretty much sucks at it. While I agree that Rin and Hanako are fairly unlikely companions given their personalities, I think you have to take that with a grain of salt in order to make a fic featuring them possible, and you devised a fairly plausible way that they would first meet (though, as I mentioned in my first comment, now the challenge will be establishment of repeat contact). To point out that they probably wouldn't be friends in the first place strikes me as similar to going into a horror movie and pointing out that it's not scary because monsters aren't real.

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Re: Odd Friendship: A Hanako and Rin Route

Post by Mirage_GSM » Wed Jul 04, 2018 12:18 pm

“Never tried it.” she said, firing off words rapidly. “Always too hot. Tea is weird. It’s dried leaves. Leaves aren’t tasty, but tea is.”
This one is weird, but not in a Rin way... Has she or hasn't she tried tea before? If not how does she know it's too hot or that it's tasty?
Most other SPaG issues seem to have been caught already.

As for the story itself... Boy, did you choose a difficult premise for your first story. As QS said, those two are quite the unlikely pair - much more so than the Hanako/Misha pairing if I think about it - and it's for good reason there aren't many stories featuring them together.
So far the characterization for Hanako feels a bit off but not disturbingly so. For Rin I think you copied a few lines verbatim from the VN which you should avoid as much as possible.

One more thing I found a bit strange was that this was supposed to be their first meeting - or at least that Hanako would nnot know - at least OF - Rin. They've both been going to this school for a while, and it's not as if the student body is overly large - probably below 250 students alltogether and no more than 70-80 in one year. So even someone as reclusive as Hanako should know the other students at least by sight. And RIn is probably one who stands out nearly as much as Emi or Lilly or Shizune.
Remember in the VN Rin knew of Hanako despite her habit of hiding in the library whenever possible...
Emi > Misha > Hanako > Lilly > Rin > Shizune

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Re: Odd Friendship: A Hanako and Rin Route

Post by Hanako Fancopter » Wed Jul 04, 2018 1:26 pm

It is actually mentioned in Hanako's thoughts that she has seen Rin around, but never got her name.

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Re: Odd Friendship: A Hanako and Rin Route

Post by psyxypher » Wed Jul 04, 2018 1:57 pm

Mirage_GSM wrote:
Wed Jul 04, 2018 12:18 pm
“Never tried it.” she said, firing off words rapidly. “Always too hot. Tea is weird. It’s dried leaves. Leaves aren’t tasty, but tea is.”
This one is weird, but not in a Rin way... Has she or hasn't she tried tea before? If not how does she know it's too hot or that it's tasty?
Most other SPaG issues seem to have been caught already.
Basically, she doesn't drink tea because its usually too hot for her too pick up with her feet (and she'd rather not spill hot liquids all over herself because of clumsily handling it with her feet). But she knows other people drink tea, and that you can flavor tea, etc.

Also Rin seems like more of a coffee person if you ask me. But that isn't really brought up.
QuietlySomething wrote:
Wed Jul 04, 2018 12:41 am
First things first, welcome to the forum! Seems like we have been getting more new faces around here lately, or maybe that's just me.
Thank you. I've lurked around to read a few popular fics. And less popular ones. Not enough lurking to actually recognize any names.
QuietlySomething wrote:
Wed Jul 04, 2018 12:41 am
Hanako doesn't feel in-character.
This did not escape my attention whilst writing, which is why I added the scene where Mutou talks to her. I'm not going to pretend I'm on Hanako's wavelength, but I like to think I can to an extent get inside her (and Rin's) mindsets. Which is why I chose these characters.
To give you an idea of what kind of person I am, I'm friendly, talkative, and very good at Cards Against Humanity.

My Rin/Hanako fanfic, Odd Friendship. You'd be doing me a favor if you read it.

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Re: Odd Friendship: A Hanako and Rin Route

Post by JoesAlot » Thu Jul 05, 2018 3:11 am

Hi yes it’s me, complete stranger.

Good fic. Yeah, that’s all. I’m not too good at this “criticism” stuff.

Though...

I do notice the 1st person perspective is a little awkward to me. First thing would be the narration. I like reading 1st person when it makes me feel like the person, and not like another person reciting their experiences to me.

For example, “I watch as the students exit the classroom at their own pace” could be “The students exit the classroom, each walking at their own pace” or something like that.

Another thing would be the dialogue, when you’re in an ongoing exchange of dialogue, instead of the “I say” “He says” “She says”, maybe cut a few (not all of them, I’m sure they’re necessary in areas) and just imply who’s saying what. I think it makes it seem more like smooth dialogue.

Also internal dialogue, I dunno, but the “italics go here I think to myself” could go without the “I think to myself” part, just to make it seem more like natural internal thought.

I am not a writer, I do not write a lot, do not think I am a writer or that I am an experienced reviewer of writers. I just know the way I like to read stuff, so just take what I say with a grain of salt.

Good fic, did I say that already?

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Re: Odd Friendship: A Hanako and Rin Route

Post by psyxypher » Tue Jul 10, 2018 9:21 pm

Alright, Chapter 2 is ready. This is 3 days ahead of Schedule, but since I already have it done and July 10 is Hanako's Birthday, I decided "Why the hell not?"

Anyway, here's Chapter 2: Helping Hand(s)

Yes, many of the chapter names are going to be puns. I love puns. I'm not apologizing.

~~~~Hanako Ikezawa~~~~

It’s Wednesday today. I have not seen Rin since our encounter on Monday. Yesterday, I had a run in with the new student in the library. I found out his name is Hisao Nakai. We exchanged a few words before we just sat quietly and read our respective books until the Library closed.

My mind is all over the place. I’ve been thinking about Hisao and Rin all day. I’m having lunch with Lilly right now, and that’s where my mind should be.

“Hanako, you’ve been awfully quiet. Is something wrong?” Lilly asks. I noticed I’ve barely eaten my lunch. I assume the lack of noise is what Lilly was referring to.

“N-nothing.” I reply. “I’ve just been th-thinking.”

“May I ask about what?” Lilly questions.

“W-well, I’m thinking a-about when Rin joined us on Monday,” I answer. To be honest, I’d been thinking more about Rin than about Hisao. She hadn’t stayed for too long after she’d gotten her tea, but she’d left a bit of an impression in my mind.

Lilly’s face drops again. “Miss Tezuka is certainly...an interesting individual.” she replies, a string of annoyance sowed into the fabric of her sentence.

“D-d, do you not like Rin?” I ask her. It seems very unlike Lilly to openly dislike someone.

“I find talking to her to be...exhausting.” she says. “You two seem to get along, however.” she adds, her eyes opening and looking directly at me. In all my time around Lilly, I’ve noted that she’s trained herself to look in the direction of sounds she hears, especially when she talks to people.

“I…well.” I stop for a moment, and wonder why I was so quick to drop my guard around Rin. Had it been Mutou’s speech earlier, or had her odd behavior calmed my nerves? My thoughts were cut off by the warning bells for the end of lunch. “W-we should clean up.” I say, changing the topic. Lilly’s smart. I think she can tell from the tone of my voice that I’m not sure how to answer her.

“Quite.”

~~~~

The rest of the day was uneventful. I managed to shake Rin out of my head, but I noticed that Hisao did not return after lunch had ended. In this school, that can mean a lot of things. I’m in no position to judge him, since I’ve come back late from lunch plenty of times. I’m a little worried, however, because he hasn’t returned at all. Almost never a good sign in this school.

I’m not the only one who has noticed his absence. Misha and Shizune have noticed as well. Shizune looks either disappointed or sad, just staring at his seat while she waits for class to end.
Misha is firmly in the “sad” category, elbows on her desk as she holds her head in her hands.

I’m now convinced something happened to him. But before I can dwell on it further, the bell for the end of classes rings. I usually just wait for Lilly to swing by the classroom. I guess I have a few minutes to do whatever.

I grab my book from my bag and start reading. My current book is actually a graphic novel translated into Japanese. It’s titled V for Vendetta. Yuuko suggested it to me, telling me it was one of her favorites and she thought I’d like it. It’s about Britain being controlled by an authoritarian government.

I haven’t read too far into the book yet. I have, however, met what I presume is the main character. He wears a mask and black cloak, which allows him to hide his identity. He’s a terrorist, fighting against the government.

In the first chapter, he saves a young woman. Her name hasn’t been mentioned yet, but I feel sad for her. She was about to resort to prostitution because her job didn’t earn enough money, and ran into some cops on her first night out before the main character saved her.

By the time I’ve finished that first chapter, Lilly is by the door. I store my book, grab my bag, stand up and walk up to her. “H-hi Lilly.”

“Hello Hanako.” she says, giving her warm smile. Without much delay, I grab her arm and the two of us walk towards the tea room.

~~~~

I set up in the tea room with Lilly, watching her go over and set the stove. If clinging to her was automatic for me, making tea was automatic for her. She could easily figure out where everything was and knew exactly what setting to set the stove too. Everything was carefully practiced, and I’d slowly watched Lilly get better at it over the time I’d known her.

“H-how was y-your day?” I ask Lilly. Her expression shifts into a frown. “Tiring,” she responds. “Festival preparation has gotten everyone either in a frenzy or working themselves ragged.”

“Oh.” I quietly respond, more of a squeak than anything else. I feel rather guilty. I haven’t really helped out with the festival. Even Hisao has probably helped out with the festival, even if Misha and Shizune dragged him into it.

Speaking of those two, I believe one of them has some kind of psychic ability, because Misha chooses that moment to make an entrance through the open doorway of the tea room, subtle as ever. Which is to say not at all.

“Miss Satou! We have been looking for you!” Misha exclaims. As usual, she is signing every word she says and hears so Shizune can communicate. Misha often not only conveys Shizune’s words, but more often or not her emotions as well. Given that both Misha and Shizune look annoyed, I can’t tell who the emotion is coming from.

“Ah, hello Misha. I assume Shizune is with you as well.” Lilly replies, her composure calm, but I know for a fact that she’s both annoyed and likely knows that Shizune is there as well.

“Greetings Miss Class Rep.” Misha says, going into a more neutral expression. “We’ve come to discuss the matter of you using this room for your impromptu tea parties.” she says. Shizune’s expression is as stone, just staring at Lilly.

“Is there a problem with that?” Lilly asks. Misha looks to Shizune, who signs something to her rapidly. “Yes, actually. You’ve been using this room completely unauthorized.” Misha says, carrying Shizune’s words.

“That hasn’t been an issue before.” Lilly replies. “Why is it a problem now?”

“We have not been able to get around to it as of late due to the festival,” Misha says. “However, we are ahead of schedule, and thus have time at this very moment.”

I freeze up when I realize what this conversation entails. Lilly and I are going to get kicked out of this room. Our room. I highly doubt Shizune and Misha will let up on this issue.

“I’m afraid we will have to ask you to stop using this room.” Misha relays, crossing her arms. “Immediately.”

“This is inane. This room is completely unused, and we’ve been using it all year!” Lilly protests, the sharp turn in her tone of voice causing me to flinch. It’s not often that anyone sees Lilly angered.

“It has become a problem because other clubs may have their eye on this room, and we’re here to stop any conflict before it starts,“ Misha says, putting her hands on her hips. “If you want to keep using this room, you have two options. First, you can fill out a form with the student council to use this room. Though with the festival and all, that may take a while.” Misha says. Coming from her, it’s likely that’s meant to be sincere instead of a taunt directed at us.

“Meaning you and Shizune.” I think. There’s a little twinge of doubt in the back of my mind in whether we’d actually get approved by them, however, given Shizune and Lilly’s emnity.

“Or, you could apply to start running a club in this room!” Misha adds, smiling brightly. I slump in my chair, a dark miasma forming over me as my lips curl into a frown. I come to this room to escape others, not to converge with them. I couldn’t imagine crowding into this room with other people that I don’t know at all.

Shizune and Misha leave the room on that note. Lilly breathes out a sigh while I just let my head collide with the table with a thud, shaking up the silverware and teacups.

“Hanako? Are you alright?” Lilly asks.

“Physically, yes,” I say. “Otherwise, no.”

“I’m sorry this happened.” Lilly replies, clear sorrow in her voice. I stand up. “It...isn’t your fault,” I reply, still staring downwards. “I...I think I need some t-time alone.” I say, before leaving the room.

~~~~

I was going wherever my legs would take me. I wasn’t quite running, but I had to get away, go somewhere. The thought of not being able to use the tea room was awful in and of itself, but seeing Lilly get so angry just left me with a bad feeling inside, like some kind of weak nausea. I just wanted to curl up somewhere and fall asleep. Or cry. Either worked.

My silent steps through the hall take me past the last room on the third floor. The art room. I’ve never been in this room, mainly because of the thin sheet of dust that seems to be as much a part of this room as the walls and floors. Since everything else has been weird this week, I decide to just go inside.

Someone is standing at the far wall and staring out the window. It’s Rin. She’s perfectly still, like a statue. In fact, with the way the light is shining, I’d almost think she was if not for her distinct silhouette and auburn hair.

As I close the door, she turns her head, having heard me. The beams of sunlight hit her face, casting a soft glow on her. But her eyes seem to just absorb the sunlight entirely.

“H-h-hi.” I squeak. For the second time this week, this girl had shown up where I hadn’t expected her.

“Hello.” she replies, before turning back and looking upwards. I walk over and look out the window as well. It’s a cloudy day, and I got to the window just in time to watch the sun be smothered by a cloud.

“Do you think cloud flavored ice cream would taste fluffy?” Rin asks, turning to me. It takes me a moment to process this question. Not because I don’t know how to answer it, but because I never expected to be asked this question.

“I guess it would taste like flavorless shaved ice, but really airy.” I reply. Rin stares at me bewildered, as if what I just said was the most enlightening thing she’s ever heard.

“I guess it needs sugar.” Rin replies, looking back to the clouds.

“W-why are y-you in here alone?” I ask.

“Cloud watching.” she replies, not taking her eyes off the cloudy sky, only squinting when the sun peeks out once more.

“Don’t y-you have anything to do for the festival?”

She positions her head so she’s facing parallel to the ground, before turning over to me in a fashion so mechanical I swear I can hear clockwork turning as she does it. “What day is it?”

“Wednesday.”

She looks away from the window. “That’s not good. It’s almost the weekend. I have things to do. Cloud watching can wait.” she takes a few steps towards the door, but stops and spins around on one foot, looking at me again. “I need help.” she turns to me. “I need your arms.”

“What.”

“I need you to lift things. I can’t do it myself. Can you lift?” she asks. Oh, she wasn’t being literal. Maybe I’ve been reading too much fiction. “Nothing too heavy.” I reply.

She walks over behind a desk, lightly kicking something and making a dull metallic clang. “These.” she replies I poke my head behind the desk. There’s a very heavy looking can of paint on the ground.

“Oh dear.” I think to myself.

~~~~

A girl my size was not built to lift a paint can this weight. However, considering that between me and Rin only I have arms, the duty still falls to me. It’s a small mercy that I’m carrying this can down the stairs instead of up them.

When we reach the first floor, my arms are already aching. I’ve just been able to keep pace with Rin, but keeping a constant speed while carrying a heavy object is difficult.

“Do y-you have n-no one else t-to help?” I ask Rin as we reach the door of the main building. She turns back. “Do you not want to?” she asks.

I furiously shake my head, not wanting Rin to think that I don’t want to help her. “N-no! It’s just...it’s really heavy.” I whimper. I think my face is all red, and I probably look on the verge of crying.

“I have someone else. But she never sits still.” Rin replies. “She likes running.”

“O-oh.” I reply. I try picking up the the can of paint again, following Rin as she walks over to an unfinished mural on the wall. Rin sits on the ground and I set the heavy paint can on the ground. I take a moment to look at the mural.

I’ve passed by this mural once or twice, but I’ve never given the time to truly look at it. The mural is a collection of things, mostly faces twisted into inhuman proportions. I take a step back, trying to look at the whole thing.

“Is this yours?” I ask.

Rin doesn’t take her eyes off the mural. “Yes.”

The obvious question pops into my head. But I’m not sure if I should ask. I feel it’d be crossing a boundary that I’m not comfortable letting others cross with me. It’s only when Rin looks at me that I realize I was muttering the beginning of a sentence.

“What is it?” Rin asks, tilting her head as she looks at me with her beautiful green eyes. The all too familiar feeling of nervousness starts to set in.

“I, uh…”

“You can ask it. I’m an easy person to talk to.” she replies, smiling.

I take a moment to take in those words. I don’t talk to many people other than Lilly, and I’m always too nervous around other people. Being able to talk with someone new so easily is...refreshing. I decide to ask the question. “H-how do you paint without hands?” I ask, tapping my fingertips together nervously.

Rin smiles. “With my feet,” she replies. “See? Was that so hard?”

“Yes. Yes it was. But you don’t need to know that. It’s not your fault.”

“Th-thank you.” I respond. I’m not sure if she didn’t hear me or just didn’t have anything to add, because instead of replying to my comment she looks back at the mural.

“Do you think it’s flat?” she asks, not breaking her gaze off the mural.

“Flat?” I ask. “What do you mean?”

“Flat. Like a single piece of cheese.” she replies, turning her head to me. “You need more than that to make a good sandwich.”

“Huh?”

Rin continues on. “Sandwiches have bread, and then what’s in between. Sometimes it’s just cheese. Boring. And not tasty on it’s own. Unless it’s grilled. Other times they have lots of things, like a BLT. Or perhaps they have delicious bread but bland filler.”

Her rantings have thoroughly confused me. Is she still talking about painting?

“If you give me help with the paints I could get work some on this done. At least ‘till it’s dark. I wanted to get a lamp, but all of them have to be plugged in.” Rin says, changing the topic.

“I’m not g-good at art.” I reply, unsure I can help.

“I just need you to mix paints. Can you do that?” she asks.

“Y-yes.” I reply.

Rin moves over a small wooden crate with her feet and sits down on it, picking up a brush between her feet with amazing dexterity. I open the can of paint and start pouring different colors from Rin’s supply into different bowls.

Whilst finding the brush that Rin desires is a relatively simple task (despite the fact there must be at least two dozen different ones), getting the right color combinations may as well be trying to learn another language. I’m not sure what Rin is imagining, and I have the feeling she isn’t sure how to communicate it.

“Add some green.” Rin commands. I reach for the tube containing the lighter shade of green before Rin stops me. “That’s light green. Or yellow green. Not sure which. This green.”

In response, I grab the darker green color Rin is gesturing to and carefully add a small amount to the mixing bowl.

Rin looks at it, scrunching her forehead. “No, this isn’t it. The color should speak to you. Like the color you see in a dream and after you wake up and forget it, you instantly remember the color when you see it.”

“Perhaps it isn’t green?”

What Rin seems to be requesting is impossible. However, it does make me think. There’s a student in my class named Suzu Suzuki. She has narcolepsy, and she’s often sleeping a lot. Coincidentally, her hair happens to be an aqua-green color. Rin’s comment made me think of her.

“M-maybe aqua green?” I suggest. Rin looks at me, and I decide to elaborate. “Th-there’s this girl in my class. She has hair that color. And she sleeps a lot.”

Rin tilts her head, focusing in on me. There’s a moment of silence between the two of us before she speaks again. “Perhaps. Add some blue.” she commands, and I do so, wondering if my suggestion was really that helpful.

This continues for a while. Every so often I take a moment to look at Rin. There’s a different air about her when she’s painting, like she has a different appearance. Regal? Beautiful? Elegant? Almost like how Lilly looks different when she’s drinking tea. “She’s in her element.” I think. “What do I look like in my element?”

Rin and I continue working until sunset, spending the time mixing colors and trying to figure out which hue would work where. By the time the sun has set, we’re running out of both paint and light.

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Chapter Index

~~~~

Thank you to my awesome Beta Readers Hanako Fancopter and /u/Arodyrok.

Also, if you haven't read V for Vendetta yet, I suggest you go read it. Now. It is just that good. Also, no idea how I'm supposed to link things on this board and cover the link in text, so if someone could inform me of that, I'd appreciate that. That way, I can set up links so people can jump from Chapter to Chapter (nevermind, solved).
Last edited by psyxypher on Thu Jul 19, 2018 5:15 pm, edited 3 times in total.
To give you an idea of what kind of person I am, I'm friendly, talkative, and very good at Cards Against Humanity.

My Rin/Hanako fanfic, Odd Friendship. You'd be doing me a favor if you read it.

Hanako Fancopter
Posts: 149
Joined: Fri May 25, 2018 6:27 pm

Re: Odd Friendship: A Hanako and Rin Route

Post by Hanako Fancopter » Tue Jul 10, 2018 9:31 pm

In the reply screen you have buttons to bold text and such right above the text box--you want the one to the left of the font color (droplet) button. It looks like a chain link. Highlight the text you want to have a URL, then add an equals sign and the link you want to use, as such:

[url = link]sample text[ /url]

Like that, but without the spaces.

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