Some One-Shots (Updated 7-29-2017)

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emmjay
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Some One-Shots (Updated 7-29-2017)

Post by emmjay » Sat Feb 02, 2013 2:53 am

Just what it says in the title. Caution: Reading one after another may induce mood whiplash.

Fire and Ashes: This post
Wake Up, Little Suzu
Nineteen Years
After the Smoke Clears

Fire and Ashes
Part I: Fire

“Misaki? Do you smell smoke?” My husband's voice wakens me out of a sound slumber.

Now that I'm awake, I smell it too. It smells like maybe... an electrical fire?

“Yes, I think it's coming from the kitchen. We'd better check it out.”

We're not even halfway down the hall when we see the angry red glow coming from the kitchen doorway. We run the rest of the way, and a horrifying sight reaches our eyes when we round the corner. It's not just a small fire, most of the room is ablaze. My husband yanks his shirt off and starts using it to smother the flames nearest us.

“Misaki! I'll do what I can, you get Hanako and then call the fire department!”

Just as I turn around to head back down the hall, there's a crashing sound, a scream, and a horrible, sickening thud behind me.

“Shiro?” I cry as I whip around. But it's too late. The love of my life lies under the remains of the collapsed kitchen roof. “SHIRO!” I fight my way through the flames to him, but as soon as I reach him, I know it's too late. There's no way he could be alive, not with the angle his neck is bent to.

Just then, a faint but terrified cry reaches my ears. “Mommy! Daddy!”

Oh God. Oh God, no. Hanako's bedroom is just on the other side of the wall from the kitchen. Not Hanako too, not my little baby...

I find myself in her bedroom without any clear memory of having forced my way back out of the inferno that used to be our kitchen. Sure enough, the flames have spread to her room, and Hanako lies curled into a ball on the floor, the pajamas I got her for her last birthday already burning. Without even thinking about it, I'm wrapped around her, snuffing the flames on her body with my own. She's burned, but she's alive. My baby's still alive.

“Come on, Hanako, get up, baby. We've got to get out of here.” Just as I start to rise, the wall next to her bed collapses.

The flames that have already stolen half my family from me roar in from the kitchen to finish the job. Instinctively, I curl tightly around my daughter, hoping against hope to protect her from the hungry blaze.

The flames sweep over Hanako and me, but mostly just me. I hear a voice screaming in agony, only to realize after a moment that it's my own.

The pain is like nothing I've ever experienced, like nothing I've ever imagined. Every nerve ending in my body is screaming. I can smell my own body burning.

Hanako is screaming and sobbing under me. Her screams don't sound as pained as my own, though. Maybe I've saved her. I'm not going to make it, I can tell that much, but maybe Hanako will live.
I whisper a prayer to anyone willing to hear me, “Please, don't let her die, too. Not my Hanako.”

The last thing I hear before I black out from the pain is the faint sound of a siren, mixed with Hanako whimpering under me.

I'm so sorry, Hanako...

Part II: Ashes

Man, I haven't seen one this bad in years. Almost half the house is ashes by the time we get the blaze out.

We start checking the house for survivors. We find a deceased adult male in what was probably the kitchen, looks like he was killed by the roof collapsing before we got here. Neck broken by a falling beam, looks like.

“Looks like it started here, you can barely tell what this room was,” my partner notes. I'm only half paying attention to him. I'm busy trying to get into the next room through the collapsed wall.

My first impression is that this was likely a girl's room. When you've been a fireman for as long as I have, you learn to look past the damage, to see things and places as they used to be.

No sooner have I made this observation than I notice the badly burnt body on the floor. Adult, looks female, definitely deceased. There's a smaller body under her, looks to be a child. Possibly the room's usual occupant.

Oh, no. Oh, that poor kid. Finding the bodies of adults is bad enough, but...

Wait... Did the little girl just move?

I shout at my partner, “Get the EMTs in here! We've got a survivor!” As gently as I can, I extract her from under the corpse of her... mother? Whoever she was, she must have died trying to protect the little girl. As I'm pulling her out, I notice serious burns on her face and body. Poor girl's going to be in a burn ward for a while, and most likely, she'll be scarred for life.

Just as I finish checking her over, her left eye flutters open and she looks at me.

“Wh-who are y-you?”

“My name's Ryunosuke Yamato. I'm with the Fire Department. What's your name?”

“H-Hanako. H-Hanako Ikezawa. You're... Fire Department? Where's my m-m-mommy?”

Asking the question seems to remind her of something, as she looks behind her to see the body.

“MOMMY!”

I catch hold of her, trying to be careful of her burns, before she can do anything,. “Your mommy's gone, Hanako. I'm sorry.”

Just then, the EMTs arrive and busy themselves with the sobbing girl. She continues to cry through it all. Her sobs are clearly audible even through the oxygen mask.

As they carry her out of the house, she catches sight of the body in the kitchen, which sets off a new round of sobs, interspersed with cries of “Daddy...”

I realize I'm still in the room with Mrs. Ikezawa's corpse, kneeling as if at a shrine. Something compels me to touch her hand, and to whisper, “Rest in peace, Mrs. Ikezawa. Your sacrifice wasn't in vain. Your daughter's safe. Hanako's alive.”

As I exit the building, I can still hear poor Hanako calling for parents who will never hear her again.

I know we got here as fast as possible, fought the fire as hard as we could, but just like always in a situation like this, I can't help but wish we could have done more.

I'm so sorry, Hanako...
Last edited by emmjay on Sat Jul 29, 2017 12:52 am, edited 4 times in total.
Yuuko > Akira > Miki > Meiko > Sae.

Some one-shots I've written (Updated 7/29/2017)

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Re: Some One-Shots

Post by emmjay » Sat Feb 02, 2013 2:59 am

Happened to be listening to a certain 50's song while thinking about KS. Knew I had to write this.

Wake Up, Little Suzu

It starts out just like any other Saturday, really. The usual classes, the usual activities, the usual Lit Club meeting, etc. Even Suzu asking for me to take a look at her computer after the meeting isn't that unusual.

“Um, Akio? My laptop's acting up. Again.”

“What's it doing this time, Su?” I ask, hoping it's not anything like the last time. Yamaku doesn't have Internet access outside of the computers in the computer lab, and we ended up having to haul the thing down to the Shanghai just to download an anti-virus program. How she got a virus on a computer with no Internet access, I'll never know.

“It's just running really slow, especially when I watch a DVD.”

“Hmm. Well, probably nothing major, let's grab a bite to eat and then I'll check it out.”

As we head out of the library, Takashi sees the two of us and gives us what may be the most suggestive look I've ever seen.

“Well, well. Where are you two headed off to together on this fine Saturday afternoon, I wonder? Not up to anything naughty, are you?”

“Sheesh, get your head out of the gutter, Art Boy, I'm just going to fix her laptop.”

“Is that what they call it now?”

“You're an ass, Maeda.” This comes from a rather unexpected source, namely the green-haired girl next to me. Even when she's awake, Suzu's about the quietest girl in our class, next to Hanako of course.

“Maybe, but think how boring life would be without me. Well, I'll leave you two lovebirds alone.” He departs with a laugh more annoying than Misha's and almost as loud. We glare at him as he walks away. Well, I glare, anyway. Suzu's too sleepy to do much more than stare dully, but the intent seems to be there.

“You know he didn't mean anything by that 'lovebirds' crack, right?” Suzu lets out a yawn so large that I half expect her jaw to unhinge, and then looks at me with an expression I can't really interpret.

“I don't mind, if that's what you're asking.”

“It's just that I've never heard you call anyone an ass before, is all.”

She gives me a smile that manages to be cute despite being sleepy. Or maybe cute because it's sleepy.

“Well, he is, isn't he? But enough about Takashi, let's get to the cafeteria before they run out of ramen.”

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

After filling ourselves up with what the cafeteria euphemistically refers to as “food,” I find myself in Suzu's room, once again confronting my old nemesis. I normally like Sony's stuff, but this particular laptop has given me so much trouble, ever since Class 3-3's resident sleepyhead found out I was good with computers. Well, when you can break bones just by falling over, you don't go in for a lot of physical activity. Computers, books, and video games occupy the majority of my free time.

“Suzu, how is it that someone who likes gadgetry as much as you do can know so little about what to do when they act up?” I can't help but think of the first time I saw her room. My initial impression was nothing but electronic devices and soft pillows in roughly equal amounts. Don't get me wrong, it's a comfy room, and I've got more than my share of things that beep and light up, too, so I can't really say much. Glass houses and all that.

“I'm sorry, Akio...”

“Hey, I'm just teasing you... Let's see what we can do.”

It takes a few hours, what with defragging, uninstalling, rebooting, and the occasional bout of swearing. Suzu catches a nap for the first hour (or maybe the nap catches her, considering), and wakes up to see me still going at it, upon which she pulls out her DS.

“Should have brought mine, we could have had a kart race or something.” She doesn't pay me much attention, already rapt in her game.

Finally, the Sony is restored to some semblance of working order, Suzu's smiling at me like I just gave her a million yen, and I find myself in no great desire to leave.

“Su, you said DVDs were making it really slow? Why don't we pop one in and see what happens.”

“Sure, pick something out, I'll go make us some popcorn.”

I can't decide what to watch, until my eye's light on the stuffed Totoro Suzu's had for as long as I've known her. Why not, it's one of her favorites, and I'm fond of it too. I pop My Neighbor Totoro in just as Su gets back with the popcorn. Suzu and I get comfortable against the side of her bed, and we settle in for some Miyazaki goodness.

About halfway through the movie, something lands on my right shoulder. Investigation reveals it to be Suzu's head; she's out like a light. The side of her bed and I are the only things keeping her upright. Not that I mind, I can think of worse fates than having a cute, sleepy girl use you as a pillow. I'll wake her up when the movie ends...

*yawn*



“Suzu, I just want you to know, if I don't make it out of this alive, I've always loved you, and I want you to have my DS.”

“Don't be silly, Akio. There's no way that T. Rex will get us. We're too cool to die!”

Waking from one of the weirder dreams I've had in a while (why was Suzu dressed like an American cowboy?), I find Suzu still snuggled up against me and the laptop displaying the movie's menu screen. Well, at least it plays DVDs all right now.

Wondering what time it is, I look up at her dresser, where her alarm clock sits next to the stuffed (overstuffed, really) T. rex I won for Su at the festival. Damn thing's probably partly responsible for the dream, should have gotten her the blue cat. My eyes almost bug out of my head when I see the time displayed on the clock.

“Four AM?! Suzu, wake up!” Come on, even you can't sleep forever. At least I don't think you can...

After what seems like an eternity, her eyes slowly open, and blearily focus on me.

“Huh? Akio? You still here? Wha... what time is it?”

“Four in the morning!” Her eyes are wide open now; I don't think I've ever seen her wake so fully, so fast.

“What? How come you're still here then?”

“I fell asleep not long after you did and just woke up now. You're not contagious, are you?”

“Ha ha. Very funny, old man.”

I stand up and stretch, my joints popping loud enough to make Suzu wince.

“Are you okay?” I start to give her a casual answer, but the concerned look on her face gives me pause.

“Yeah, just that sleeping sitting up doesn't agree with me. I'll be fine, though, don't worry.”

I start to gather my things, which prompts Suzu to ask, “You leaving?”

“Yeah, if I'm going to have to sneak out of the girl's dorm, I'd rather do it under cover of darkness. Don't want someone seeing me and spreading rumors. Takashi in particular would never let me hear the end of it.”

I take one last look around, making sure I didn't leave anything behind, before making my farewells.

“See you later, Su. Your computer should be doing fine, at least until the next time that thing decides to make my life miserable.”

“See you, Akio.”

Just as I step out into the hall, a soft voice behind me makes me turn around.

“Akio?”

“Hmm?”

The look on her face is almost... flirtatious? I suddenly flash back to how she looked in the hall outside the library after our exchange with Takashi. It's more or less the same expression, after adjusting for differing levels of sleepiness.

“I don't really mind rumors. Why don't you stay for a while?”

It suddenly occurs to me that I don't mind rumors that much either, at least not if they're about the right person.

“You know what? I think that's the best invitation I've gotten in a long time.”

With that, I step back into her room, and the door closes behind us. Saturday may have started out ordinary, but I think Sunday just may be extraordinary.
Yuuko > Akira > Miki > Meiko > Sae.

Some one-shots I've written (Updated 7/29/2017)

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Re: Some One-Shots

Post by Mirage_GSM » Sat Feb 02, 2013 5:52 am

Well, I couldn't bring myself to care much for the frst fic, and not only because it was kind of a downer. I really had some problems believing Hanako could have survived in a house buring itself out even if she was protected by her mother - or that she would be coherent or even conscious afterwards...
The second story is way better. Sweet story, witty dialogue and a seldom before seen glimpse at Akio make this my favourite One shot in quite some time. Thanks for writing it.
Emi > Misha > Hanako > Lilly > Rin > Shizune

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

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Re: Some One-Shots

Post by emmjay » Wed Jul 10, 2013 6:11 am

Mirage_GSM wrote:Well, I couldn't bring myself to care much for the frst fic, and not only because it was kind of a downer. I really had some problems believing Hanako could have survived in a house buring itself out even if she was protected by her mother - or that she would be coherent or even conscious afterwards...
The second story is way better. Sweet story, witty dialogue and a seldom before seen glimpse at Akio make this my favourite One shot in quite some time. Thanks for writing it.
I didn't really mean to imply the house had burnt itself completely out. It's been a while since I actually wrote it, but I think I had something in mind along the lines of a very hot, but fairly localized fire. And as for Hanako being conscious, I meant to imply she's just regaining consciousness as the firefighter makes his way into her room.
Thanks for the kind words about "Wake Up". I had a lot of fun writing it. The main reason I used Akio was precisely because he's so little used, which meant I could characterize him however I wanted.
And without further ado, a new story! (I apologize if this one's a little rough, I was sorta rushing it to get it finished by today.
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Some one-shots I've written (Updated 7/29/2017)

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Re: Some One-Shots

Post by emmjay » Wed Jul 10, 2013 6:13 am

Happy birthday, Hanako.

Nineteen Years

It's my birthday.

For the first time in years, that thought, that fact, doesn't leave me depressed. The memories are still there, of course. Memories of people putting on false smiles, pretending I matter to them, that come tomorrow, they won't be back to treating me like something broken, something hideous. But those memories don't have nearly the effect on me they used to have.

Because now, I have new memories. Memories of the people here today, people who do care about me, who genuinely want to celebrate the day I came into the world. Lilly, the first real friend I'd had since my parents died. Mr. and Mrs. Nakai, who accepted me and my relationship with their son more quickly than I ever would have hoped for.

And of course, Hisao. The first boy I ever loved, and the first to say he loved me in return. Sometimes I still can't believe that out of all the girls he could have pursued, he chose me. Suddenly, I realize that the subject of my thoughts is looking at me with a concerned expression on his face.

“Hanako? You're looking a little distant. You still with us?”

“Hmm? Oh, s-sorry. I was j-just... thinking.”

Lilly smiles in my direction. “Happy thoughts, I hope.” I can guess what she and Hisao are worried about, considering the date. I give the two of them a reassuring smile. “Yes. Very happy.”

“Nice to know.” “I'm glad to hear that, Hanako.” The relief in their voices is subtle, but definitely present.

Just then, there's a rather forceful knock at the door of our small apartment. Hisao goes to answer it. To my surprise, Akira strides in through the open door. For the first time since I've known her, she's not wearing a suit, either. Instead, she's wearing a frilly and rather low-cut blouse, slacks, and flats. It's more feminine than what I'm used to seeing her in, but it fits her.

“Akira! I th-thought you were still in Scotland!”

“Surprise! I had some vacation time coming to me, so I thought I'd visit some of the old stomping grounds, and see some old faces. And of course, there was no way I was gonna let those two throw a party for you without me,” she says, pointing to Hisao and Lilly.

“I believe some introductions are in order,” Lilly says. “I don't believe you've met Mr. and Mrs. Nakai, Akira.”

“Oh yeah, of course. You must be Hisao's mom and dad,” Akira says, shaking their hands in turn. “I'm Akira Satou, Lilly's older sister.”

“Yes, Hisao's mentioned you,” Mrs. Nakai says.

Akira gives her a cheeky grin. “Lies and slander, all of it.”

Lilly speaks up again. “So, Akira, is Tetsuo with you? I didn't hear anyone else come in...”

Akira shakes her head. I guess Hisao and I aren't the only ones who never shook the habit of gesturing to a blind person. “No, he came back with me, but he wanted to catch up with his family. I'll be meeting back up with him tomorrow.”

“I take it Tetsuo's the boyfriend?” Hisao asks.

“Not just my boyfriend, technically. As of three weeks ago, he's my fiance!” She holds up her right hand, and sure enough, there's a ring gleaming on her finger.

“Congratulations!” Hisao's sentiment is echoed by all of us in the room. Akira's definitely enjoying the attention, until she looks at me with a start.

“Sorry, Hanako. Didn't mean to upstage you at your own party!”

“Th-that's okay, Akira. Engagements are h-happy occasions, too. I don't mind sh-sharing the spotlight.”

“Well, that's a relief. Say, speaking of engagements, Hisao, when are you gonna put a ring on Hanako's finger?”

I can feel myself blushing, and I'm not the only one. To my surprise, Hisao turns beet red at the question, looking around evasively. “Er, well... That is, I uh...”

“My, my, Akira, I do believe you've put him on the spot.”

Hisao shoots an agonized look at Lilly, then seems to realize the futility of doing so. “Et tu, Lilly?”

Everyone laughs, and soon enough the conversation turns to other matters, but I can't help but notice that he never actually answered Akira's question, jesting though it may have been. Did he not want to answer? Does he not want to be tied down? Does he expect that someday, he'll tire of me and want to move on?

No. No! I'm not going to let myself think about things like that. Hisao loves me, and I love Hisao, and I am not going to listen to any traitorous voices in the back of my head that say otherwise!

“Hey. You okay?” Once again a concerned voice, this one Akira's, interrupts my thoughts. I look up to see her half-worried, half-curious expression. “You looked a little sorta... sad, I guess.”

For all the differences between them, Akira has a lot in common with her sister. I think that's why I'm able to get along with her as easily as I do. Akira may be somewhat loud, even brash sometimes, but she's sensitive to others' moods, and is pretty good at knowing when someone's unhappy or uncomfortable.

“S-sorry. Just the d-date getting to me, I g-guess.” It's not even really a lie; would I suspect Hisao of being so fickle if not for the memories this day brings back, memories of so many fair-weather friends?

“Ah. Hey, Hanako, I'm sorry if I made you feel uncomfortable back there. You know I was just teasing, right?” I think she must half-guess the thoughts that have been going through my head the last few minutes.

“Yes, I know. D-don't worry about m-me.”

Akira smiles, relieved. “Say, while I've got your attention, Tetsuo and I are going to be getting married here in Japan. Lilly's going to be my maid of honor, naturally, but I was wondering: would you like to be one of my bridesmaids?”

“M-me?”

“Sure! I'll understand if you don't-”

“No, I'd love to!”

“Great! And don't worry about the bridesmaid's dresses, I was figuring on something that didn't show too much skin anyway.” In other words, something that won't reveal too much of my scarring. Somehow, I suspect Akira's plans for the dresses are no coincidence. But it doesn't really bother me, in fact I appreciate the thought, and let her know.

“Thank you.”

She seems to understand my meaning. “No problem. Hey, the food's ready!”

Sure enough, Mrs. Nakai, Lilly, and Hisao are setting the food out, along with a bottle of white wine, one with a label that starts to look familiar as we near the table.

“Akira? Did you bring the wine? It looks like the same...”

“Yep, same vintage as last year. But I didn't exactly bring it, I sent it on ahead when I wasn't sure if I was going to be able to visit.”

“What?”

“Yeah, it's been hidden in your kitchen for about a week now. You never noticed it? Your boyfriend's sneakier than I realized.”

Hisao overhears this last part, and gives Akira a quizzical look. “What's this about me being sneaky?”

“Hanako never noticed the wine. Out of curiosity, where'd you hide it, anyway?” she asks, looking around the small kitchen. Come to think of it, there aren't many hiding places in here, or really in the apartment as a whole.

“That cabinet right there is wider than it looks,” he replies, pointing. “I tucked it away off to the side.”

He uncorks the wine, and proceeds to pour each of us a glass. Once back at his place, he raises his glass and looks at me. “To Hanako.”

“To Hanako!”

I know I'm blushing again, but this time it's a happy blush. Akira smiles at me, and says, “And now, let's dig in!”

The dinner is delicious, but I wouldn't expect anything less of Lilly. The conversation is mostly inconsequential, as we're too busy enjoying the meal. Hisao teasing Akira on finally varying her wardrobe, Akira teasing him back about his sweater vest, and Lilly and Mrs. Nakai talking about cooking make up most of the dinner table chatter.

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

After the dinner is eaten and the dishes cleared away, the presents are brought out. Lilly hands me the first one, but as it turns out, this present isn't from Lilly.

“This is actually from Shizune,” she says, as I remove the wrapping to find a very nice backgammon set, complete with leather case. “She insists that the first game you play with it be against her.”

“Th-thank her for me, Lilly. And let her know I'll be waiting for that game.”

Akira's next, with a jazz CD: Kind of Blue by Miles Davis, who Akira assures me is one of the greats. “You'll enjoy this one, I'm sure.”

The Nakais give me a Book Off gift card, somewhat apologetically. “We know you like to read, but we weren't sure what books you had. This way, you can be sure of getting something you like.”

Lilly hands me her present, which turns out to be an intricately carved wooden box. When I open it up, a tiny ballerina figure inside starts to spin, one leg out to the side and her arms above her head, as a tune I don't recognize starts playing. Something from The Nutcracker, maybe? Whatever it's playing, it's a lovely piece, and a lovely music box. “It's wonderful. Thank you, Lilly.”

“I thought you'd like it. Isn't the carving beautiful? I actually bought that at the same antiques store where we found the presents for your last birthday. Hisao helped me pick it out, just like last year. And speaking of Hisao...”

“Right. Well, guess I shouldn't put this off any longer.”

What does he mean by that? Before I can figure it out, he's handing me his present. His is somewhat less carefully wrapped than Lilly's, a fact not lost on Akira. “Nice wrapping job there, pal. Sis did a better job on hers, and she's blind, after all!”

Lilly and Hisao both smile, although Hisao's smile is rather self-deprecating. “Yeah, I was... sort of in a hurry. Well, Hanako, the sooner you open it, the less time we'll spend looking at my failure.”

“R-right.” I pull off the wrapping paper and open the box inside to find a pair of bookends shaped like chess knights, one white, one black. The craftsmanship is beautiful.

“Are these hand-carved?”

“Yeah, a guy at work does woodworking for a hobby. When I got wind of it, I asked him to make these. I have to admit, I was pleasantly surprised with them.”

“They're lovely. Thank you so much. And thank your coworker for me, please?”

“I sure will. But you haven't seen everything there is to see about them.” He takes the black one, turns it over, and slides part of the bottom out, revealing a small hidden compartment inside.

“Oh! That's clever.”

“Yeah, he's pretty good. Let me show you how to open them,” he says, getting down on one knee in front of my chair and putting the white knight in my hands. “There's a catch here, see?”

I open the catch and slide the bottom out, but this one's compartment isn't empty like the black one's was. There's a small box inside. Wait, that couldn't be... Dare I hope?

Hisao takes the box out and opens it, revealing a beautiful diamond ring. “H-Hanako Ikezawa, will you marry me?”

Suddenly, Hisao finds himself in the tightest embrace I've ever given him. That I've ever given anyone. I can't talk, I can barely think for how happy I am. He manages to disentangle himself enough to look me in the eye and ask, “So, that would be a yes.” I’m still so choked up that all I can do is nod, but I can see in his eyes that he understands.

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

Later, after the congratulations, another toast, and the inevitable teasing from Akira, everyone's gone home. Once again, Hisao and I are alone in our little apartment. Hisao's in the kitchen cleaning up, my new bookends are on the shelf with a well-worn copy of Life of Pi between them, and I find myself sitting on the loveseat, just looking at my engagement ring. No, it's not quite as nice as Akira's was, but Hisao is the one who put it on my finger, and that's all that matters to me. Hisao comes in and sits next to me.

“Not having second thoughts, are you?”

“What? N-no! I, I just keep thinking I'll wake up. That this has all been a wonderful dream.”

He reaches up and pinches my left cheek. “There, see? Not a dream. Actually, I've been pinching myself for the last hour or so, thinking I'll wake up, and not really wanting to.”

I reach up and pinch his cheek. “J-just to be sure.” We stay like that for a moment or two, just looking into each others eyes, until Hisao starts chuckling.

“Heh, now you understand why I got so flustered when Akira asked me when I was going to propose. I couldn't exactly say, Before the evening's out, now could I?”

“N-no, I guess not.” How could I have ever suspected the things I did of Hisao? Far from wanting to move on, he wants to spend the rest of his life with me. And I want to spend mine with him.

It's my birthday, and I couldn't be happier.
Last edited by emmjay on Sat Jul 13, 2013 6:04 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Some one-shots I've written (Updated 7/29/2017)

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Re: Some One-Shots (Updated 7-10-2013)

Post by Mirage_GSM » Wed Jul 10, 2013 5:28 pm

So, Akira, is Tetsou with you?
I thought it was a typo at first, but you spell him this way consistently.
Usually this name would be spelled "Tetsuo"

Nothing else to criticize. Good job!
Emi > Misha > Hanako > Lilly > Rin > Shizune

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

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Re: Some One-Shots (Updated 7-10-2013)

Post by emmjay » Sat Jul 13, 2013 6:05 am

Mirage_GSM wrote:
So, Akira, is Tetsou with you?
I thought it was a typo at first, but you spell him this way consistently.
Usually this name would be spelled "Tetsuo"

Nothing else to criticize. Good job!
It was a typo, actually. Just one I repeated. :oops: Fixed now.
Yuuko > Akira > Miki > Meiko > Sae.

Some one-shots I've written (Updated 7/29/2017)

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BlackWaltzTheThird
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Re: Some One-Shots (Updated 7-10-2013)

Post by BlackWaltzTheThird » Sun Jul 14, 2013 11:13 am

As cute as this is, I can't help but wonder exactly how many years Hanako refers to. It seems to imply that it's only been one year since the birthday in KS, which makes the couple 19 years old apiece. Rather a young age to be proposing marriage, I'd say. Certainly not unheard of, but... unusual. As for Tetsuo, a reference to Thanatos' Akira route, I take it? Nice.
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emmjay
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Re: Some One-Shots (Updated 7-10-2013)

Post by emmjay » Fri Sep 18, 2015 6:38 am

BlackWaltzTheThird wrote:As for Tetsuo, a reference to Thanatos' Akira route, I take it? Nice.
Never actually read it, just a coincidence. (And yes, I realize this reply is quite late.)
Sharp-O wrote:Suzu and Akio (Suzukio? Akizu? Suzukio.) is a cute pairing and I like what you did with them here, Emmjay :)
That pairing came about when I realized that they both had disabilities that would lead to fairly sedentary lifestyles.
Yuuko > Akira > Miki > Meiko > Sae.

Some one-shots I've written (Updated 7/29/2017)

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Re: Some One-Shots (Updated 7-29-2017)

Post by emmjay » Sat Jul 29, 2017 12:51 am

Wow, has it really been four years since I posted anything here? Sheesh. Well, here goes. Just a little vignette about an old man in a park...

After The Smoke Clears

Another quiet afternoon in the park. Nothing much changes here. The same trees, the same ducks at the same pond, and me, the same retiree feeding those ducks the same bread. The only real variety is the kids from the nearby school. Given that it's a school for the disabled, you see wheelchairs, crutches, missing arms, kids with hearing aids... I can't help feeling sorry for some of them, but few of them seem to be feeling much in the way of self-pity. And maybe some of them feel sorry for me. After all, disabled or no, their life is still ahead of them, while mine is mostly past.

Awash in such thoughts and out of bread, I sit and watch the traffic. A fire truck rolls by, prompting a fresh round of reminiscence. Memories of burned buildings: some only slightly damaged, others little more than a pile of ash with a foundation. Glimpses into stranger's lives: a half-melted toy robot here, a soot-stained wedding portrait there. The thrill of finding survivors; the sorrow of finding those who hadn't been so lucky. The retirement party the department threw me, with the biggest cake I'd ever seen. (No candles, obviously. Didn't want to tempt fate.)

My mind is pulled back to the present by a teenage couple walking nearby. Neither of them seem to have any obvious infirmities, but the boy is wearing the Yamaku uniform (except for the tie) so he, at least, seems to be a student. The girl...I can't tell. There aren't many young people around here, except for the students, but there are a few who live with their grandparents or something similar. Still, though, there's something about her that strikes me as familiar. Something about her long dark hair, or the way it covers part of her face...

I realize I've been staring when the two of them stop and look at me. That's when I see why the girl wears her hair the way she does. The right side of her face has some pretty serious scarring... burn scarring. That's when I remember. The last fire I responded to before my retirement. A house with two burned bodies. Two bodies, and a little girl cowering under the corpse of her mother, who'd given her life to save her daughter. I clear my throat.

“Forgive my rudeness, children. This is going to sound odd, but could I ask your name, young lady?” She seems surprised. Well, after all, when strangers asks her questions out of the blue, her name probably isn't usually the first thing they ask about.

“H-Hanako. Hanako Ikezawa. And this is Hisao Nakai.” Ah, yes, that was the name all right. I rise, and bow to them.

“I am Ryunosuke Yamato. A pleasure to meet you both, or in your case, Miss Ikezawa, to meet you again.” Confusion flickers across her face as she tries to remember where she might have met me. “You may not remember me, as we only met briefly, years ago. You see, I used to be a firefighter.” Realization dawns.

“Y-you... You were the one who... found me.” Her eyes start to fill with tears, and she moves closer to Mr. Nakai. He puts an arm around her shoulders, and she leans into his embrace, her eyes never leaving mine.

“Yes, I was. I deeply apologize if I've brought up bad memories.” I bow again.

“N-no, it's all right. I've c-come to terms with it.” I suspect she's not being entirely truthful, but I don't wish to be impolite.

“That is good to hear. Again, please forgive me for staring. It's just that you seemed very familiar as you walked by with your... friend?”

She smiles, a small, sweet smile, and holds him closer. “Boyfriend.”

“Ah.” I shake his hand. “Again, a pleasure to meet you, Mr. Nakai. Did you two meet at the school?” I incline my head towards the hill upon which sits Yamaku Academy.

“That we did. In the library, to be exact.” She glances at him, her expression suggesting there's more to that story than he's telling.

“The two of you enjoy reading, then?”

They nod in unison, and Hisao speaks up. “I was... in the hospital some time ago, and picked up the habit there to pass the time.” As he says the word “hospital,” Hanako's hand moves to his chest, seemingly of its own accord.

“I see. It's good for lovers to have common interests.” She blushes, a rather adorable sight. “Well, youngsters, I won't keep you any longer. I need to head home for dinner, anyway. May I say, though, that it warms this old man's heart to see you well and happy, Miss Ikezawa.”

After a moment's hesitation, she steps over and hugs me tightly. “Thank you, Mr. Yamato.” Over her shoulder, I see a surprised expression on her boyfriend's face. Not surprising, really. There are many in Japan who would not respond well to being touched by someone as scarred as Hanako, so I don't imagine she hugs too many people. I return the hug, as tightly as my old muscles can.

“You're quite welcome, young lady.” She releases me, then looks into my face as if memorizing it. After a few moments, she turns to Hisao, who bows to me. “Nice to meet you, Mr. Yamato. Well, Hanako, shall we be off?” She smiles at him, the two of them walk off, looking much like any other young couple in love.

As I head home, I reflect. It occurs to me that Hisao Nakai has something in common with myself. As a fireman, I learned to look past the damage caused by the smoke and flames, to see what lay underneath; to recognize what things and places had been before disaster struck. Mr. Nakai would seem to have a similar knack. Most would look at Hanako Ikezawa and see only the scars. Hisao looked beyond those, and saw the girl under them.

Under those scars, he saw someone to love.
Yuuko > Akira > Miki > Meiko > Sae.

Some one-shots I've written (Updated 7/29/2017)

Toothless
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Re: Some One-Shots (Updated 7-29-2017)

Post by Toothless » Sat Jul 29, 2017 1:43 am

Really sweet story. I liked it.

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Re: Some One-Shots (Updated 7-29-2017)

Post by QuietlySomething » Sat Jul 29, 2017 1:47 am

Wow, a new post after four years? Welcome back then!

Anyway, this one-shot felt a little abrupt to me- maybe it just seems strange that the two of them would recognize each other so quickly and easily. But it was a very sweet premise and a unique concept. Good work!

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Re: Some One-Shots (Updated 7-29-2017)

Post by Mirage_GSM » Sat Jul 29, 2017 3:41 am

I agree, very nice story.
Not sure Hanako's reaction would have been so mild when suddenly faced with those "bad memories" but I'll excuse that for the sake of the story.
I suspect Hisao will have some serious comforting to do later on, though...
Emi > Misha > Hanako > Lilly > Rin > Shizune

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griffon8 wrote:Kosher, just because sex is your answer to everything doesn't mean that sex is the answer to everything.
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emmjay
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Re: Some One-Shots (Updated 7-29-2017)

Post by emmjay » Sun Jul 30, 2017 1:01 am

Mirage_GSM wrote:I agree, very nice story.
Not sure Hanako's reaction would have been so mild when suddenly faced with those "bad memories" but I'll excuse that for the sake of the story.
I suspect Hisao will have some serious comforting to do later on, though...
Maybe she's just doing her best to keep it together in public. I leave it to the reader.
Yuuko > Akira > Miki > Meiko > Sae.

Some one-shots I've written (Updated 7/29/2017)

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