Clarity: (Complete)

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Kayo12
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Clarity: (Complete)

Post by Kayo12 » Wed Jul 04, 2012 5:38 pm

I had this sitting in a document for some time gathering dust, practically forgotten, until I read Paddy's "A Memory Hisao has of Lilly" http://ks.renai.us/viewtopic.php?f=52&t=6664 which reminded me of this opening part. So I went back and finished it and here it is for your enjoyment. Several parts, but I'm not sure how I'll be splitting it up, so it'll be a gradual process.
Any corrections are welcome and suggestions about the content would be appreciated.

Clarity

Part One

I hurry down the hall as fast as I dare. The walls under my fingertips are smooth, oak panels gliding beneath my touch, wood moulding beneath as I move past closed doors. One door, two doors, three doors on the left side, now the big door, Father's door.

It's bigger and heavier than the others and I fidget nervously in front of it, smoothing out my dress carefully, trying to find any wrinkles that I can. The rule is no one is to disturb Father while in his office, but I'm so excited about my new dress, I have to show him right away!

I touch the doorknob, feeling all the tiny little details on it, the bumps and grooves on the handle, the delicate leaf-work around the edges. The knob is a large, heavy thing in my hands, thick with the smell of aged brass and that icky feeling that old metal gets. Everything in the house is old, most of them antiques, expensive and big. I can only play outside or in the playroom and Mother would be cross if she caught me running in the halls.

I turn the knob gently and I can hear Father inside talking, his voice slightly strained. “Yes, I agree it is a big step. I'm not saying I don't appreciate the offer, but you have to understand it's a huge commitment, to both me and my family.“

Father's voice is deep and smooth, but I can hear he's a little upset about something. There are no guests visiting today; Father and Mother always introduce me and Akira whenever someone comes to the house, so Father must be talking to someone on the phone. I wait for a long pause to see if he notices me, but he must be preoccupied with the call, so I take a hesitant step forward.

I am inside Father's office.

I begin creeping forward, feeling out with my hands to avoid any furniture in the way. I am not used to Father's office, so I have to be careful I don't trip or bump into anything. I smell Father's cigar in the air and I follow it towards the source.

Five steps on the wooden floor, carpet under my feet. I can smell the scent of the leather chairs that I know are in front of Father's desk below the heavy smokey odor, so I know I am close. Father's voice is also nearer than it was before.

“I fully understand this is a one time offer, I'm not making light of the situation. This promotion is something I've been demanding for a long time. Are you certain the work would require relocation?“

Five steps on the carpet, reaching out, I find Father's desk, huge with a smooth glass top.

“I understand. I'll need some time to think about this. Thank you.“

A loud click, the phone being put down. A heavy, labored sigh.
“Father?” I whisper.

A shuffle, sudden and surprised and Father's voice has a curt and stressed edge to it. “Lillian? What have I told you about my office? You know you're not allowed in here, especially when I'm working!“

I cringe and try to shrink into a tiny ball. “I...I wanted to show you my new dress," I say, gripping the skirt in my fingertips. "It's for my first communion!”

I feel his disapproval thick in the air. “That's no excuse to break a rule in this household.”
I turn my face down, my fingers now laced in front of me. “I'm sorry, Father. I was just so excited, I wanted you to see....”

He sighs again, disappointed. I'd rather have him disappointed than angry with me. Father is loud when he's angry and loud things scare me.

The carpet makes noise as he steps around his big desk towards me. I try not to shiver when I feel him get close. I love Father very much, but when he gets mad, he frightens me terribly.

Father makes another sound, a contended sigh this time and I can hear a little chuckle in his voice to reassure me. “I can forgive you this time," he pauses, "since you do look so beautiful.”

I gasp a little laugh and I hesitantly face up towards him. “I do?”
“Oh, yes, certainly! Hug?”

I reach out and find Father's leg and wrap tight around him. It's like hugging a tree trunk! I can barely get my arms around him!

I feel his hands, large and strong, gently touch my shoulders, letting me know what he's doing. Then he puts his hands around my waist and lifts me up, as if I weighed no more than a pillow! I giggle as he holds me up in the air and I feel like I'm flying! Father must be the tallest man in the world!

“Do I really look pretty?” I ask him when he brings me down and holds me to his shoulder.
“Oh, yes, Lillian! And it's your favorite color too!“
I smile. Mother already told me the dress was white, but I like that Father knows what my favorite color is. White is the color of winter and ice cream and Niji's fur. I like all those things, so I must like white the most.

“Did Akira really wear this dress for her communion?“
“Yes, but she hated it! She couldn't wait for the ceremony to be over.“ Father sighs sadly. ”Akira is far more impatient than you are, Lillian.“

“I like church! I like hearing all the people sing and spending time with you and Mother!“
Father is always away on business, so I like anytime he's around. Church is one of the few places we get to be together with the whole family.

Father laughs. “Well, I'm glad to hear you say that! Church is very important to your Mother.” I feel him move around, walking around in a big circle. He playfully bounces me in his arms as we talk. “Are you ready for the ceremony?”

“I am! But....” I hesitate.
“What is it, Lillian?”
“It's not real blood, is it?”

Father laughs loudly. When he laughs, the whole house shakes! It's one of the only loud things I like. “Of course not! That's just a name, dear! Don't be worried about that, it's just a little wine, that's all!“

I gasp. “But I'm too young to drink that!”

“It's only a very small amount. It might be unpleasant at first, but don't worry about that, you'll get used to it. And it is a very special occasion, so I think we can make an exception this time.“

Father hugs me tightly and I rub my face into his shoulder, feeling the softness of his suit against my cheek. He smells like ink and vanilla flavored smoke.
“I love you, Lillian.”
“I love you, Daddy!”

He chuckles and it's like the sound of a cat purring. “You know what? I have a present for you! I was going to save it for afterwards, but I want you to have it right now.“

Father sets me down in a big leather chair. “Now don't move, I'll be right back.”
“Okay!”

Father leaves and I fidget excitedly. A present? I love presents! It's not even Christmas or my Birthday!

Far off to my left, I hear a click that must be a lock. Father opens a drawer and I hear things being moved around. Now another click, that's the lock being put back. Whatever it is, it must be important! Now the wood floor creaks as he walks back towards me and his footsteps become muffled when he reaches the carpet.

Now he's in front of me and I hear him shuffle, kneeling to face me on my level. I hear something metal like a tiny chain being rattled.

“Hold out your hand,“ he tells me.
I do and I feel something cold and heavy laid in my palm. I touch it and feel it, letting my fingers find the edges of the object Father gave me. It's attached to a long chain, I was right! I bet it's a necklace! It has several corners to it and I trace my fingers all along it, making a line in my mind until the object is complete and whole. “It's a cross!” I declare.

Father laughs. “Yes, it is! Pure silver. This is a very important cross, you know? It belonged to your Grandmother and your Mother and I want you to have it now.“

I gasp. It belonged to Grandma?
“Oh, Daddy, thank you!“ I hold it tightly to my chest, but then I think about something that makes me sad. “But...shouldn't Akira have this?”

Father doesn't say anything at first and when he does, he sounds upset. “I don't think Akira would appreciate it very much, Lillian. She doesn't really care for these sort of things. But I know you will and your Mother and I want you to have it. I want you to keep it with you all the time, all right? It's very important! I want you to wear it and it will remind you just how special you are to me and your Mother.“

“I will! I promise! I'll never take it off, ever!”

Father wraps his arms around me and helps me put the cross on, clipping the tiny clasp behind my neck. “It looks beautiful!” he tells me.

I laugh and lift my face, wanting a kiss.
He kisses me on the cheek, on my forehead and makes silly eating sounds as he picks me up and kisses me all over. I giggle and throw my arms around him as far as I can.
“I love you, Daddy!”
He chuckles and holds me high. “I love you, Lillian.”

Someone puts their hand on my shoulder and it startles me terribly. “Lilly, come on. We're going be late,” Hisao tells me gently

I begin to panic. This is not how I wanted Father to meet Hisao!

The dream fades away and I try to hold onto the last bits of my Father's presence before they evaporate. Sounds change and I can no longer smell his cigars or feel his arms around me. I gasp as if I was plunged through a bath of water, the warm embrace of my Father replaced by sheets and the softness of a bed under me. I plummet and fall through the sounds and feelings of my memories being replaced by other new sensations. I grumble unpleasantly. Light heats my face and I turn away from it.

I hate mornings.

“Just...just a little longer, please,” I say, rolling over.

I feel the hand on my back gently rubbing me to wakefulness. Hisao chuckles and it sounds like a purr to me. “That's what you said an hour ago. Come on, Lilly, we'll be late for class. You don't want to miss out on a shower, right?“

I groan in discomfort. I force myself to sit up and I blink a lot, clearing the sleep from my eyes.

I see nothing.

Dreams are the worst thing about waking up for me. One minute I'm with Father, the next I'm years later and thousands of miles away. It's like thinking I'm in a building and then realizing I'm actually in a car when everything around me begins to move and lurch about. It always takes me a while to get my bearings after I dream. I take a moment to center myself, reminding me where I actually am.

I am in Hisao's room.

And in his bed, I note with a bit of pride.

My muscles ache and everything is too loud, though I know Hisao spoke only in gentle whispers to me. “I'm up, I'm up,” I assure him.

He touches my cheek and kisses me and it perks me up more than a cup of tea ever could. His fingers drag slowly through my long hair and I feel goosebumps form all over my skin. “You really are a mess in the morning, you know that?“ he teases.

I put on my best pout, shrugging my shoulders and try to look as sad as I can manage. “That's a terrible thing to say to me, Hisao....”

He laughs again, his fingers playing with my earlobes. “Well, what do you expect? I woke you up almost an hour ago and you begged me to let you sleep in. I'm all ready for school and took a shower and I still find you in bed? How unfair is that to me?“

He pats me on the thigh and I feel his weight shift, standing up from his bed. “I have a little breakfast for us just about done. If you hurry we can quick eat and get to class before we're both tardy again.“

I nod and Hisao walks away. I hear the sound of plates moving and something being poured into a glass. It all smells wonderful.

I debate my options; breakfast sounds good, but Hisao's bed is so warm. It wouldn't be that terrible if I was late for class just one more time. I can even think of several ways to convince Hisao to join me in bed.
Oh, but he would never let me do that, mores the pity. Hisao takes his schooling very seriously and with exams still looming ahead and around us, both of us need to keep on our toes. I guess the allure of a shower is the best option for right now. It would do wonders to make me feel better, I imagine.

I shuffle out of bed, my feet touching the carpeted floor. I stand, my legs against the bed's edge and I breathe a few times to steady myself and prepare for the day. Three big steps forward, I reach out and find a wall. I trail my fingers down until they touch a dresser, but my bag isn't there.

“Hisao, did you move my overnight bag?”
A clatter of silverware. “Oh, Lilly, I'm sorry! I had to move it when I got dressed. It's right next to the dresser on the floor, to the left.“

I trail my fingers along the wood dresser until I find the edge. I move downwards and kneel, careful not to bump my chin against the dresser top. I find some clothes and pick them up. I drop them quickly, sweaty, the smell terrible.

“Oh, Hisao, you just left your dirty clothes here on the floor!“
Another clatter.
“Oh, jeez! I'm sorry, let me just, give me a second here...!”

I grimace at his flustered muttering. Hisao is such a messy young man. That's something that will have to change.

“Here, Lilly, I'm sorry.”

He presses the familiar texture of my bag into my arms and I take it from him, wrapping my arms around it. “You know, if I'm going to keep spending the night here, you need to learn to clean up after yourself,“ I say.

“I know, I know, I'm sorry! Just, you know, used to dropping things wherever....“

I smirk and reach up, placing my hand on his cheek, gently rubbing his strong jaw line. “Well, maybe I should be pleased. Most young men would be more careful about keeping their rooms in order when their girlfriend is visiting. Perhaps you're just very comfortable with me being here? Or are you taking advantage of me?“

He makes several adorable stuttering sounds, flustered and bothered terribly by my words. “No, no, that's not it, I'm just messy, that's all, I promise!“

He tries to continue, but I trace towards his chin and put a finger to his lips, silencing him. I draw close and remove my finger just before pressing our lips together. He hesitates for only a moment, then relents, our lips tightly compressed. I can taste his mouthwash, minty and pleasant, covering up the normal taste of his lips that I so enjoy and have become accustomed to.

I'm not sure what it is, but Hisao is such a good kisser! I was worried at first that he had a lot of practice before he met me, but I think it's more just a natural talent for the act at this point, a talent I'm very pleased to practice with.

I feel his lips smile under mine and we pull apart from one another. I still have a hand on his face and I playfully tap his nose. “I'll be right out.”

I turn and reach out, hand on the wall. Hisao's room is very different from the girl's dorms, so I've had to learn and try to memorize where everything is. He doesn't make it any easier for me with his messy habits, though.

Trailing my fingers along the wall, I find the door and step into the bathroom. For a moment I consider just leaving the door open, but I decide to shut it; Hisao doesn't need the distraction.

The door shuts behind me.
I am in Hisao's bathroom.

I make a quick inventory in my bag, taking note of the things I'll need; shampoo, soap, a washcloth, my hairbrush, towel. The bathroom is much larger than mine and I can still smell Hisao's shampoo in the steamy air. I kneel on the floor in front of the shower and feel out the stall; the last thing I need is to slip on a bar of soap Hisao carelessly left behind. Finding nothing, I set my things in the shower where I can find them again easily, lining them carefully on the little shelf on the wall. I disrobe, placing my folded pajamas in a separate pocket on the outside of my bag.

I turn the shower on, filling the room with the sound of running water. I wait for a moment before testing the stream and find it far too hot for my liking. I turn the nozzle back and forth, trying to find the right position so the water won't be too warm. My shower has buttons that heat the water to a predetermined level, but Hisao just has a simple knob to choose hot or cold. I have to turn the knob left and right to find the most pleasant temperature Even so, all of these inconveniences are worth it if I get to spend the night with him.

Eventually I find a comfortable level, a bit on the cool side, just how I like it, and I step into the shower, closing the door behind me. The water is soothing and makes my skin clench, the sensation waking me up and doing wonders for my aches. I sigh and turn the water up just slightly after I become accustomed to the feeling of it against my naked skin. I smell steam begin rising up as the water heats and I set it to a comfortable level.

I feel out my washcloth and soap and begin lathering myself, the wondrous smell of peaches clearing away any last vestiges of cobwebs in my head. The water runs down my skin and I plunge my face into the stream, gasping slightly as I do. Water cascades down my long hair and I feel the night sweat being cleared away, dragging my fingers through and getting all the messy tangles out. I sigh and let the water roll over me and down my legs, tickling me as it passes. I sigh contentedly, my fingers dragging pleasantly across my skin.

A few minutes pass and I hear a click outside the stall as a door opens. Maybe he simply forgot something in here, but I can't keep a smile off my face as Hisao enters the bathroom. I wonder idly if the glass door is steamed up enough to hide me, not that I mind it if he watches. Goodness, it would only be fair if he decided to join me after all.

Well, we can't do that, I muse regretfully. While I'm glad that he's taking some initiative in our physical relationship, we simply don't have the time this morning.

Pity, I hate to disappoint him.
Although, if he does ask, it won't require much convincing on his part to change my mind.

I'm about to tell him this when a voice speaks out; “What are you doing, man?”

Every pore on my body tightens and my blood runs frigid cold through my veins, the warm water doing nothing to melt the ice cubes now running under my skin! That voice! That is not Hisao!

I recognize it from class! It's Setou, Hisao's hall-mate!

I nearly shriek, but clamp my hands around my mouth to keep the exclamation from bursting forth.

“Why are you taking a second shower, man? You know the schedule! You get early morning shift and I get late! You're screwing up my whole routine here!“

I panic, my mouth held shut. I fumble and grab for the inside handle of the shower, holding it as tightly as I can to keep him from entering.

“Oh, I get it! Throw them off, huh?" Setou continues. "I see what you're doing. If you stick to a schedule then they'll know where you are, when you are. I like that, Hisao! You're starting to think like a man who wants to survive! You can't let those horrid bitches get the drop on you!“

What is he talking about!?

“So what have you been up too, anyway? If I didn't know better, I'd say you were avoiding me. Not that I don't appreciate your heightened sense of caution. Not at all! If we're not seen together, they can't take us out in one shot! You've had me worried for some time, bro. You've been hanging out with that blind, amazon bitch a lot recently and her little scarred, troglodyte girlfriend!“

I'm shocked at first and then outraged by Kenji's words. What did he call Hanako? And did he just call me a bitch?

I get a little upset. I'm not an amazon, am I?

“Yeah, you had me going there. I mean, I thought at first that they had you under some sort of mind control or were blackmailing you, but you've really impressed me! Getting in this deep into their inner circle, infiltrating their numbers, it's impressive! You're the exact kind of man I'd want to rely on in an emergency! Just don't let yourself get in over your head, okay? You ever need an extraction, you give the word and I'll come to the rescue!“

Still tightly gripping the handle, I jump when I hear a bang on the door.

Please, God, please don't let this happen!

“You all right in there, man? You're being awfully silent, even more than usual.“

There's a hesitation.

I begin praying even harder that he'll just go away!

“Oh. Ohhhh! I get it! Oh, man, I'm sorry! I didn't mean to interrupt you in the middle of your 'business'! Heh, I'm sorry, bro! Goodness knows I like a little personal time myself, if you know what I mean!“

My cheeks begin to burn.
Oh, my....

“Yeah, I get it! I get it! Tell you what, I'll just take my shower later. You just, heh, take care of your personal issues and I'll come around when the room is free. Just do me a favor, okay? Clean the shower really good, all right? It's common courtesy. And next time put a sock on the doorknob or something!“

I hear sniffing.

“Man, what is that? Peaches and vanilla? What the hell, man!? You're gonna smell like a queer all day! You need to get yourself some real body wash or some bitching cologne. Like something that smells like a mountain or some shit! Here, I'll leave you a bottle of my stuff. Don't thank me, it's the least I can do! You'll like it, it's got a little ship on the side! I'm not sure what it's called, I can't read the tiny print, but it'll make you smell like a man!“

There's the sound of something moving around and a door opening. “Talk to you later, broseph!” The door shuts and I'm alone again.

I gasp for air and pant in fear and terror, shaking all over. I quickly finish my shower, wash my hair and grab my things hastily. I find a door and quadruple check my orientation. Satisfied it is the door to Hisao's room, I quickly step through with all my things in a bundle and slam the door shut, leaning against it and panting hard.

I am back in Hisao's room.

Thank you, God.

“Hey Lilly, just in time! Breakfast is....” I hear a clatter of a plate falling to the ground. “L-Lilly?”

That's when I realize I'm still naked and dripping wet.

“Wha...what...um....,” Hisao stammers nonsensically.

Goodness, what should I say? The situation was embarrassing enough, but I don't want to tell Hisao his roommate just walked in on me! I don't think he's the jealous type, but he may not react well to it either way.

“Um, are you okay, Lilly?
“Yes, I, I just...well, we are in a rush, so I thought I should hurry.“

There's a long pause where I imagine Hisao is trying to get his train of thought back on track. I'm somewhat pleased that he's so flustered by my presence and nudity. The last thing I would want was for it to become commonplace.

“I see. Um, okay, that makes sense.”

I smile a little bashfully. “You don't mind, do you?”

“Oh! No! No, not at all! I mean, it's not like...not like I haven't seen...you...and you're dripping wet...all over....and I'm gonna clean this up now.“

My cheeks burn as I dry my hair and dress myself as quickly and hastily as possible. When I'm done I find Hisao's desk and pull the chair out, sitting down. “I'm very sorry about that, Hisao, I hope it wasn't a very large mess,” I apologize.

Hisao step up to me and places a hand on my shoulder. “No, not at all. Don't worry about it.” He chuckles. “Just a second, Lilly....”

I feel his hands on my shoulders, straightening my uniform, tightening the bow around my neck. Then I hear him as he rummages through my bag at my feet and begins brushing my hair.

“Hisao, you don't have to do that....”
“I know,” he says, running his fingers through my hair. “Actually, I kind of like it.”

I blush and cover my cheeks. “Oh! Well then, please, go right ahead.”

Hisao softly drags the brush through my hair, but he spends almost as much time using his fingers, tickling the sensitive part on the back of my neck. Ooh, it feels good. At one point he kisses my neck and breathes in the scent of my hair. “I like that shampoo you're using. What is it, vanilla? Peach?“

“Yes, I thought you might like it.”
“Well, you were right.”

When he's finished with my hair, I wrap it up in my ribbon using the same, practiced movements I've used for years. Hisao sits down near me, the springs in his bed creaking as he does. “Here you go, something a little different; eggs and toast with a little potato and vegetables. I thought we could use a little variety.“

I hear him set the food in front of me and a slight pressure on my knuckles as he holds the eating utensil lightly against my hand. I take it, find that it's a fork, and thank him for the food, eating carefully, but quickly.
It's only a few bites later of the delicious breakfast Hisao has made for us that I realize I don't hear him eating.

“Aren't you hungry, Hisao?”
“Heh. Well, yeah, but the plate I dropped was mine.”

I feel terribly guilty for feeding myself like a pig in front of him and I bite my lip. “Oh, Hisao, I'm sorry! It was my fault, I shouldn't have startled you like that! Here, you should eat this then.“ I scoot away to give him room.

“No, no, you eat, Lilly! I made it for you.”
“But....”

Hisao laughs and I hear him shift on the bed, closer to me. “It's all right, Lilly. Please, eat!”

I feel even worse now. “You need to eat something as well....”
“Tell you what; we'll share it. A little breakfast is better than nothing at all, right?“

I hear him take a chair and sit next to me at the desk, close enough to brush against my leg. I smile and nudge the plate closer so he can get to it. “Well, all right. Actually, that sounds nice.”

We share the breakfast and the fork together. Still, I can't help but suspect that Hisao leaves me the lion's share of it.

“Lilly, open your mouth,” he asks me.

I'm a little surprised, but I do so and Hisao places a piece of food just on my lips and I bite into it. I giggle and reciprocate, holding the food out and he takes it, making ridiculous eating sounds as he does that makes me laugh. It's teasing the way he feeds me, letting the food rest on my lips, touching it to my tongue softly. He even kisses away an errant speck of something on my cheek.

We feed each other playfully for a while until the food becomes scarce and Hisao pops the last morsel between my lips.

“That was delicious, Hisao, and fun. Thank you.”
He touches my lips with his fingers and kisses me, the flavor of the breakfast we shared strong and tasty.

Hisao gently takes my hand and puts a long, tiny chain in my palm, my necklace weighing heavily in my hand. “Here, you left it on the nightstand.“
“Would you mind....?“ I pull my hair up and away.
Hisao wraps his arms around me and helps me put the cross on, clipping the tiny clasp behind my neck
“Thank you, Hisao.“
He kisses me on the cheek and touches my face softly.
“You're welcome, Lilly. Time to get going, right? Let's get to class.”
Last edited by Kayo12 on Tue Jul 31, 2012 7:35 pm, edited 15 times in total.
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DLMicheru
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Re: Clarity

Post by DLMicheru » Wed Jul 04, 2012 6:06 pm

NAICE! :D

I really liked the scenes, especially the memory/dream part, it gives a bit insight on Lilly's life as a child.
Also glad you worked out the faith-aspect of Lilly.

One remark though, the moment the story switched from memory/dream to present/being awake is a bit confusing, I had to reread that part.
Unless the confusion intended I would recommend a clearer "switch"
Roses are red,
My name is Dave. My real name is Michel, not Dave
This poem makes no sense.
Microwave.

Lilly=Hanako>Emi>Rin=Shizune/Misha

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Tenteke
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Re: Clarity

Post by Tenteke » Wed Jul 04, 2012 6:24 pm

This is really good. It's nice to finally read something from Lilly's perspective.
Hope is not dead yet, so we'll forever scream until it's deafening. Jessie Barnett
I'd rather be hated for who I am than loved for who I am not. Kurt Cobain
We are given too much room to be expected to do only good. We are more curious than bold. Keith Buckley

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Breaker deGodot
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Re: Clarity

Post by Breaker deGodot » Wed Jul 04, 2012 6:48 pm

I really hope this isn't a oneshot, because its quite rare that someone can do a Lilly POV so effectively! This was really cute, I have to admit.
"There is no excellent beauty that hath not some strangeness in the proportion."
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Helbereth
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Re: Clarity

Post by Helbereth » Wed Jul 04, 2012 7:36 pm

DLMicheru wrote:NAICE! :D

I really liked the scenes, especially the memory/dream part, it gives a bit insight on Lilly's life as a child.
Also glad you worked out the faith-aspect of Lilly.

One remark though, the moment the story switched from memory/dream to present/being awake is a bit confusing, I had to reread that part.
Unless the confusion intended I would recommend a clearer "switch"
I think the confusion is intentional. Lilly mentions afterward that dreams often disorient her - not being able to tell when they've ended. it makes sense to put the reader through a similar confusion.

Heh, troglodyte...

The whole scene with Kenji was perfect.

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Mirage_GSM
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Re: Clarity

Post by Mirage_GSM » Wed Jul 04, 2012 7:42 pm

Hey, Hisao's room has a direct connection to the showers again.
Sorry, insider... Anyway it hasn't. You have to go through the hallway.
Also, since the story is Lilly pov, it sounds a bit strange having her refer to her "wet, slick" skin...

Oh, and her father calling her Lillian reminded me of a certain Kosher fic O:-)
Last edited by Mirage_GSM on Thu Jul 05, 2012 3:41 am, edited 1 time in total.
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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nemz
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Re: Clarity

Post by nemz » Wed Jul 04, 2012 10:55 pm

Quite the sampler platter; A little bit of everything all in one relatively normal morning. Nice work!
Rin > Shizune > Emi > Hanako > Lilly

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Kayo12
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Re: Clarity

Post by Kayo12 » Thu Jul 05, 2012 5:49 am

Thank you all for the comments so far. I hope my added introduction answers some questions. Yes, there are multiple parts and I had noticed there were no Lilly POV fics from what I had seen. I wanted to have a little bit of a glimpse into Lilly as a child, show the type of environment she was raised in that could have led to the young women we see in the game.

[DLMicheru]

Added the following sentence;
The dream fades away and I try to hold onto the last bits of my Father's presence before they evaporate.
Hope that adds a little comprehension to the change. I wanted to make it a sudden alteration, but not enough to cause a reader confusion.

[Mirage_GSM]
Really? I always thought Kenji and Hisao had doors into their shared bathrooms. That's how I always imagined it. Doesn't the BG go from bathroom straight to Hisao's bedroom? Ah, well. This is fan fiction and if a character can be expected to have slight alterations, I don't think the architecture will cause a problem.

I removed the 'wet, slick skin' part. I, uh, may have gotten a little carried away thinking of Lilly being in the shower.
Can you blame me?
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Re: Clarity

Post by Total Destruction » Thu Jul 05, 2012 6:47 pm

Bonus points for using the word "troglodyte."

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Re: Clarity

Post by Hoitash » Thu Jul 05, 2012 8:41 pm

Very nice work, looking forward to more.
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Re: Clarity

Post by Kayo12 » Sat Jul 07, 2012 8:17 pm

Part Two

Hisao checks the halls first before we leave and the two of us hastily exit the boy's dormitories. Despite our general lateness this morning, it wouldn't do for us to be caught in such a situation and I don't want any sort of close call like what happened in the shower. One embarrassment is more than enough for today.

Outside the air is warm and the sun is very intense, enough to make my still slightly damp hair feel hot, reminding me that summer will son be upon us. I have my arm looped in Hisao's and the two of us walk together, the cement pathway under our feet. Our shoes clicking against the sidewalk, the wind rustling the leaves overhead and a few birds singing are the only sounds as we pass through the wide open grounds of the school yard.

“That was really nice,” Hisao says apropos of nothing.
“Oh? What was, Hisao?” I ask curiously.

He squeezes my arm gently and pulls me a little closer to him. “What we did last night. I really enjoyed that.”

I feel my cheeks warm up. “Hisao, but we didn't....”

He laughs and I feel him grip my hand. “No, not that! Just sleeping next to each other. I liked that, it was nice. I've been having a lot of trouble getting some good sleep lately and when you're with me...I just sleep a lot more soundly next to you, I guess.“

My heart flutters and I rest my head against his shoulder. “I'm glad I could be of some help to you, then.”

His other hand touches my face and he caresses my cheek.

We walk in pleasant silence together towards class. I feel a coolness wash over me. We must be standing in the shadow of the main building.
I hesitate for a moment.

“What's wrong, Lilly?”

I grimace slightly. I'm not sure what to say.

Hisao seems to pause next to me and then puts a hand on my shoulder. “Ah, I understand. You go ahead to your class. I'll go in a few minutes after you.“

It's not that I'm embarrassed to be seen with Hisao. Walking together through the commons isn't an issue, but to arrive at our classes at the exact same time could cause people to...talk.

“I don't want you to be late, Hisao.”
“Not that it matters. Mutou probably isn't even there yet either. I'll be fine, you get going, Miss Class Representative.“

I giggle and smile towards him, touching his face. Listening intently for anyone around us, and sensing no one, I lift my chin, requesting a kiss from him. He answers the gesture and we hold it for several long, tantalizing breathes before separating.
“I love you, Lilly.”
I rest my head against him. “I love you, Hisao. Will you be having lunch with Hanako and myself?“
“Absolutely. We'll wait for you in class and we'll head to the tea room.“
“Good. Now remember, Akira will be visiting today after school. She says she has something special planned for the three of us.“
“I wouldn't miss it for the world.”

He holds me for just a few moments longer before he kisses me once more.
“See you later, Lilly.“
I giggle. “Goodbye, Hisao.”

I withdraw my cane from my small bag and flip it out to it's full length, gently resting the tip against the floor. I hear the door open in front of me. “What a gentlemen,” I say over my shoulder to Hisao as I head into school.

I am inside the front lobby.

I walk away from the door through the main hall, my cane whipping lightly back and forth, searching for obstructions or obstacles as I walk. I head towards the left, the wall always within reach of my hand or cane until I find the stairwell and ascend carefully to the third floor.

First door, second door, Class 3-2.

I hear voices from inside and they get louder once I open the door and enter. A chime makes a sound as the door opens, announcing my entrance. “Good morning, everyone.“

I am in my classroom.

“Good morning, Lilly,” a few classmates say, responding to my voice.

“Lilly,” Miyagi, our homeroom teacher, says from the front of the class, “I was worried. We were just about to announce roll call.“

“I apologize,” I say, bowing slightly towards the sound of her voice, “I had a late start this morning.”

“Well, that's all right, you're still on time. Take your seat and we'll begin.“

I follow the line of desks, my fingers grazing the tops. First row, second row, third row. I pivot and turn to the left. First desk, second desk.

My hand on the chair behind my station, I sit down and scoot in, straightening my skirt as I do.

"Good morning, Lilly!" a cheerful voice greets me from my left.
"Good morning, Moriya, how are you doing?"
"Great! Ready for class?"
"I most certainly am."

“All right, everyone,” Miyagi calls. “Let's get roll call over with.”

The teacher announces each of our names and we reply in turn, marking both our attendance and allowing other students to know who is here and where they sit.

“Lilly Satou?”
“Present,” I say.

The door suddenly chimes, another late student joining the class.
“Hey,” I hear a voice call out in an apathetic greeting.

Oh my...it's Setou.
Several students respond to his presence in greeting like they did with my entrance, including Moriya. I remain silent.

“Kenji, you're lucky. I was just about to get to your name,“ Miyagi chides. ”You would have been tardy.“
The teacher pauses. “...again.”

“Sorry, rough morning, you understand.”

I hear a bump nearby and a surprised gasp from a student. “Sorry,” Kenji hastily says, ”excuse me.“

Kenji passes me and I smell a strong odor of cologne on him. My fist tightens, realizing he must not have had a chance to take a shower this morning. It's hard to feel sorry for him after what he said about me and Hanako, though.
A chair scrapes and is pushed in towards a desk, Kenji joining the class. I hear the teacher sigh heavily and then call his name for roll call. “Kenji Setou?”

“What?! Who said that!?” Kenji cries out in a panic, followed by the sound of a hurled chair.

----------------------------------------

Class is always an interesting experience. I'm not sure how Hisao or Hanako handle it, but I've always found class time to be more than just learning about the subject we are being taught. The methods of being taught are as interesting to me as the academic topic itself. All the textbooks are in Braille, but they are used surprisingly little as most of the work is done on a verbal level. Questions are asked out loud and recorded with special pens, like crayons, that leave behind a waxy mark so that answers can be reviewed easily by touch at a later time. Tactile maps are used in geography with various textures to represent land masses and formation and geometry is taught using pegboards and string to 'feel' the shapes and angles being drawn.

I've always wanted to be a teacher. Learning for myself seems to be secondary to me compared to how I can help others learn. English is my preferred topic and the focus of today's lesson. I'm often asked by other students to lend a hand when they require help. Being both very fluent and the Class Representative, it's my duty to help them in any way I am able.

It would make sense for me to become a teacher for the blind. It would be simpler to focus on a verbal subject, but I'm hesitant to limit myself like that. If I am to become a teacher, I have to expect that I'll be helping students who may not have sight limitations. I've done a lot of research into the various resources that can be used to make the transition of information between sighted and unsighted people easier. I have also spoken to Teacher Miyagi about the methods she uses to teach a class full of students with limited or no sight and have thought about how I could use them for myself.

Thinking about that leads me to remember why I wanted to become a teacher in the first place; my English tutor back in my private school days.

I sigh, remembering my time in Catholic school and the time I spent with him, my thoughts wandering towards my unspoken feelings. I do not regret keeping my school girl crush secret. The situation would have been so horribly awkward and embarrassing. Still, every second I spent with him in private was my most favorite part of the day. I've always been overly sensitive to what people think of me, but his opinion and approval were the most important things on my mind at that period of my life.

I don't regret keeping my secret, but I do regret never even knowing what he looked like. I never worked up the courage to ask him if I could feel his face, to 'see' him. I tried to once and I fumbled with my words, ending up just borrowing a textbook from him. It wasn't even Braille and I felt mortified by how stupid he must have thought I was!
It seems now that every time I try to imagine what he could have looked like, all of my ideas and fantasies end up getting mixed up with what I imagine Hisao looks like, not that I mind that in the least!

I'm glad I kept my feelings private. To actually confess to a teacher? Unthinkable! I would never want to put him or anyone through something like that!

Then again, I did, didn't I?

“Lilly?”
I snap to attention, realizing I've been daydreaming. “Yes, Teacher?”
“Can you tell me what was wrong with my statement?”
I think for a moment, reviewing what I had heard in the background while I had been wandering in my own thoughts. “The tense of the word was wrong. The proper word is 'caught' not 'catch'. Also, 'funner' is not a word," I say, paying careful attention to my pronunciation.
“Correct, Lilly. Well done, as usual.”
The lesson continues and I feel a little pride over my quick recovery.

Soon enough, I again lose interest, though. I think about Hisao, my heart fluttering as I do, how kind he is and how gentle, how he tries his best to be friends with everyone he meets. He always doubts his abilities, but he is such a wonderful young man. He may not realize it, but he has a charisma about him, a way of endearing himself to those around him. He's also very handsome, another positive in his favor and I know from overhearing the other girls in school that they think so as well.

He was so careful and fragile when I first met him. He almost reminded me of Hanako, in need of just a little provocation and support to get him back on his feet. The way he fumbled about in the new and unfamiliar social circle of Yamaku was the first indication I had that he was in need of a friend. I admit, I found his innocent clumsiness to be very endearing.

From there though, things changed so quickly. I tried so hard to figure out what I was feeling in those first few weeks. I had never met someone who took up so much of my time thinking about them! I was beginning to get worried about it. After Hanako's early birthday party, when he gave me my music box, he was all I could think about while I with my family in Scotland. It was ridiculous! I was with my family for the first time in years and all I could think about was a boy I had met just a few weeks prior.

When he called about Hanako's trouble over her birthday, I admit I felt a little concerned that she was all he talked about. Then the second call came and we got the chance to speak together and he said how much he missed me. It was the same thing I felt! That whole night I couldn't sleep, I felt like I was floating! All I wanted to do was get back and be near him again!

When Akira offered to let us use the summer house in Hokaido for a special return celebration, I jumped at the chance. I couldn't pass up the opportunity to spend time away from Yamaku with Hisao and it would give Hanako the chance to get outside the school walls as well, it would be good for all of us.

But then he collapsed right in front of me and there was nothing I could do! I had never felt so useless and helpless before! All the help I had thought I had given him meant nothing! I realized how quickly I could lose him. If Hanako hadn't been there with us....

It makes me sick to my stomach to think about that, about how things would be if he were no longer around, if I couldn't be near him every day.

'Your Mother and I want you home, Lillian;' that's what Father said.

I think about it and my chest throbs in pain.

I must have made a sound because my desk mate speaks quietly under the teacher's voice. “Lilly, are you okay?”
I snap to attention, my back straight. “What do you mean?” I ask.
“Is everything all right? It sounded like you were...whimpering?“
“No, I'm fine, Moriya. Just an upset stomach. Please, don't be concerned about me.“

I return to my thoughts after Moriya is assured I'm all right, but I'm not all right. I wring my hands together, thoughts of Scotland and my family running through my head, blocking out the sounds of the teacher's lesson. Those weeks in Scotland with Mother and Father after so many years apart were wonderful! Mother was ecstatic and Akira and I spent hours talking with her over absolutely nothing in particular. The sound of each others voices was more than enough. She took us to shops and we had lunches and she practically flaunted and displayed us to all her many friends and associates, to show them the daughters she had told them so much about and who she was so proud of.

And Father....

Father was so happy! He seemed hesitant at first when we met in the airplane terminal, like he was expecting his little girl to step through the door and hug his leg again. When I first heard his voice, that low, purring laugh of his, I threw my arms around him and held on as tight as I could. It made me sad to realize I could wrap my arms around him this time, but I didn't care. He still managed to lift me off my feet and he called me 'Lillian.' No one calls me that, only him! I missed him so much and he was so happy to see me again. He said I had become a beautiful woman! Mother told me later that he had almost cried when he saw me. Father never cries, I wouldn't have thought it was possible!

About a week after we arrived, Mother and Father took me and Akira aside privately and said they wanted us to join them in Scotland. Akira was receiving a major promotion that would require her to move overseas and they wanted me to come along. I agreed too quickly, so excited I was at the idea. It wasn't until later I considered what that actually meant. Leaving Japan, the friends I have here. What would it mean for my wish to become a teacher? I'm sure it will be far more difficult to find such a job in Scotland than here. What does Scotland need English teachers for, unless they need help to get rid of that abominable accent!

I suppress a giggle, remembering how Akira and Mother got into it, teasing each other about their respective speech patterns. Even Father seems to have picked up a Scottish burr!

Back to the point, what will become of my life here?

My fingers dance on my desk top nervously, gripping my pen tightly. I think about Hanako and what will happen to her. I know that she has come a long way in a very short time, but I still worry about her.

The first time we met each other, she was unable to even say a single word to me. She just showed up at my room almost unannounced. I gave her a cup of tea and she sat across from me without a word being said by either of us. I could tell there was something wrong, but I let her have her silence. A few days later she came back and the day after she came again. Soon it became a routine and we started talking, mostly about school work, then about other things. We started playing chess and she finally began to open up.
Then one day as we walked back to our dorms, she actually came out and asked if she could be my friend! As if she needed permission to think of me as a friend!

Later I introduced her to Akira and I was pleased at how quickly the two bonded. Akira practically adopted her as as second sister, her protectiveness for me latching instantly onto Hanako. She became friends with Hisao in an even shorter amount of time, with me as a sort of intermediary between the two.

Oh, God, Hisao....

Iwanoko left him and now I'm going to do the exact same thing!
She told him she loved him and he had a heart attack! What will I do to him when I tell him I'm leaving!?
Again, my chest throbs in pain and I have to cover my mouth.

“Lilly?”
I gasp and straighten up behind my desk. “Y...yes, Moriya?”
“You're doing it again, what's wrong?”
“Nothing, I said I was fine,” I reply shortly.
I hear a grunt of frustration from my desk mate. “Teacher!”
Oh, Moriya, please don't!
“Yes, Moriya, what is it?”
“I think something is wrong with Lilly.”

My face burns in embarrassment as the lesson screeches to a halt.
“Lilly, are you feeling all right?” Miyagi asks.
I hesitate for a moment, overcome with the realization that I've become a distraction and an annoyance to everyone. “I'm fine, Ma'am. Please, I don't want to be a bother.“

“Lilly, if you're not feeling well, you're more than welcome to see the Nurse. To be honest, you look a little pale.“

I pause for a moment, torn by what I should do. I realize it would be best if I just left, I must be a nuisance to the other students at this point. “Yes, I think I should see the Nurse,” I say.

I get up from my chair, take my cane in hand and maneuver my way to the door.
“Would you like me to send someone with you, Lilly?” Teacher asks.
“No, I can manage on my own, thank you, Ma'am.”

I leave the classroom, the chime announcing my departure.
Walking away down the hall, I feel a little of the weight lift from my shoulders as I put distance between the classroom full of students and myself, though my chest is still tight and my throat is terribly dry. I begin heading to the Nurse's, but I realize there really isn't anything that he could do for me, yet I can't go back to class.

I find the nearby girl's bathroom and enter a stall, locking it behind me. Sitting down on the floor, I wrap my arms around myself and think, imagining my family on one side of the world and the people I love here on the other. I find myself stretched thin between the hemispheres, trying not to cry or make any noise, trying to figure out what I should do.
Last edited by Kayo12 on Mon Jul 23, 2012 4:28 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Clarity: Part Two

Post by Yellow 13 » Sat Jul 07, 2012 8:57 pm

Another great chapter, and it is interesting to hear Lilly's side of the story
When the war, has been won
And our march home begins
What awaits has not yet been revealed
What was won? what was lost?
Will our deeds be remembered?
Are they written on stone or in sand?

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Re: Clarity: Part Two

Post by nemz » Sat Jul 07, 2012 9:53 pm

Hmm... I didn't think Lilly actually knew about Iwanko until much later.
Rin > Shizune > Emi > Hanako > Lilly

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Re: Clarity: Part Two

Post by Tenteke » Sat Jul 07, 2012 11:26 pm

This just keeps getting better. Keep up the good work
Hope is not dead yet, so we'll forever scream until it's deafening. Jessie Barnett
I'd rather be hated for who I am than loved for who I am not. Kurt Cobain
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Re: Clarity: Part Two

Post by Mirage_GSM » Sun Jul 08, 2012 3:35 am

I thought this inner monologue dragged on just a bit too long at the end...
Oh, and Ms Miyagi is female.
Otherwise good chapter again.
Emi > Misha > Hanako > Lilly > Rin > Shizune

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