Hanako/Hisao post-Yamaku (Updated 1/2/14)

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pandaphil
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Re: Hanako/Hisao Mini-Fics

Post by pandaphil » Sat Mar 16, 2013 2:34 am

Next chapter! Many thanks to Umber for proofreading duties.

Turns out the line breaks are caused by a formatting problem when I paste the text from Notepad into the Reply window. I'll try to fix them all by hand before I upload.

Anyway, I tried to make Hanako less of a damaged damsel in this chapter. Hope you like.

================================================================

Chapter II

With the tea ceremony finished and bedtime approaching, the three of us drift apart. Since Hanako had made her chicken stir-fry for dinner (low fat for my benefit, of course), she was off the hook for cleanup duties. She excused herself and went to our room to update her blog, while I hung out with Lilly in the kitchen, helping with the dishes.

Actually, I wanted to talk with her anyway.

Lilly busies herself hand-washing the dinner and tea dishes. She says she enjoys being domestic. With no class Rep duties to tend to any longer, apparently doing household chores helps her feel useful.

"You were amazing with Hanako tonight," I said, as I took the clean plates, inspected, then racked them. "I was worried we were going to have a panic attack on our hands."

"I don't really believe it would have gone that far. I've learned a few things from reading books on depression and low self-esteem. I thought it might be useful in my teaching career, should I have students with Hanako's problems." She refills the sink with hot water as she speaks, testing the temperature with her fingers.

"Its something you should consider researching too. It could help avoid any future mistakes. That trick with the teacup earlier for example. I mean, really?"

I know shes right,I should have been researching my girlfriend emotional state a long time ago. But things had been going so well. I thought things would be fine if I just kept playing it by ear. I couldn't deny my ego felt a lttle bruised by her comment. "Hey, it seemed like a good idea at the time." I reply defensively. "But it did help didn't it? And you jumped in there like a pro."

"I suppose it did turn out for the best." She passed me a salad bowl to put away. "Though I don't believe I would recommend your technique to her therapist." Her smile took some of the sting out of her comment.

"Ah, yeah, sorry bout that." I can't keep the embarrassment from my nervous laugh. "I'll replace those cups just as soon as I can." Lilly was quite proud of her imported china. In fact, she had quite a collection. But they were kept in an antique china cabinet, a present from Hanako and myself for her last birthday. It had set us back a lot, but after all the things she'd done for us over the past year. Offering advice when things got difficult. Offering Hanako and I a home and treating us like her own little family. She deserved a lot more than one piece of furniture.

"Hisao, truely, don't worry about it." She raises her hand dismissively. "I was only teasing before. I bought that set years ago for 2000 Yen. I only use my good china on very special occasions. To be fair, however, it probably is difficult to tell the expensive china from the everyday if you're not familiar with it."

She finishes the last of the dinner pots, while I make a second pass over the kitchen with the broom. It wouldn't do for one us to come across a missed shard of glass in our stocking or bare feet.

I finish up and seat myself at the kitchen table after putting the cleaning supplies away."We've known each other for over a year and I still don't understand her sometimes. She's seemed so much better lately. What happened?" I knew Lilly was no expert despite her reading, but she's known Hanako nearly twice as long as I have, and probably better than anyone else, save her therapist.

"I can understand her feeling badly, but having a panic attack over a broken cup?" I feel lost.


"An anxiety attack, to be more accurate." she corrects me. "Yes, shes been putting her life together, but deep down inside she still worries that she's a burden to us. And you do know what day it is on Sunday?"

I prop my chin in my hand. "Her birthday, yeah." I hadn't said anything to the others, but I'd been thinking about it a lot. I still had unhappy memories of last year. When she'd locked herself in her dorm room, sunk in a deep depression for days. I'd felt completely helpless. It's still something I didn't really understand about Hanako, but I want to so badly! I really do. All I can do is hope that someday she'd open up enough to share that hurt with me. I love her so much, and I want to help.

Lilly comes over, touching the back of the chair and feeling her way into the seat across from me, her hands resting casually on the table as she continues.

"Think about it. This is a fairly small house, and the two of you share a room. Where can she go to isolate herself with whatever is haunting her? And to hide, should one of us decide to spring a surprise party?"

"You think that's why she lost control?"

"I'm not sure. I think so. Her birthday bring up a lot of unpleasant memories from her past and she's under a great deal of emotional strain. I wish we could speak to her therapist about this. She'd know."

No kidding."Patient confidentiality" as they called it, was a pain in the ass sometimes.

"But we promised not never throw her another party." Hanako had shared with me some of her ordeals from the orphanage. The attendants throwing her an unwanted birthday party every year. The one matron who insisted she send invitations to the other children in her class, and then the humiliation of the other children showing up at her half-assed little party just for the cake and ice cream, always ignoring her and leaving as soon as they'd finished off the treats.

Lilly's nod pulls me back to the present. "I know. And she knows that her fears aren't always rational. She's told me as much. This is something that's tormented her most of her life, and as much as it pains us, she's made it perfectly clear that it's not our place to 'fix' her. Unless she asks us."

I agree. I almost lost her before we'd even gotten started because I wanted to save her from her problems.

A grin starts to tug at the corner of my mouth. "You sure being a psychiatrist wouldn't be a better career move than teaching?"

Lilly gives a musical little laugh as she nibbles one of the sweets from the jar we keep on the table. "I think I would burn out rather quickly trying to keep up with so many people and their problems." Her smile turns a bit meloncholy. "If I can keep my own life from turning to rubbish, and just help the people I care about, I'll be content."

I smack the table in frustration, leaning back in my chair. "Its so damn unfair. We've both had birthdays, and she's had a great time (understatment of the year). But when her's comes around we treat it like a funeral.

Lilly's expression grows helpless. "But thats what she wants. So..."

"Yeah. I just...I just hate it is all." I can't help letting my frustration color the tone of my voice. The mood here in the house has taken a seriously downward turn.

We sit for awhile as she finishes off the last small morsel of cookie and reaches for another. "You know, I might have a solution. Why don't we use the same plan as last year?"

"What, we all get drunk and you go to Scotland?" I grin at my attempt at dark humor.

"Nooo..." She draws out the word with long suffering patience as she brushes the crumbs from her fingers. Her voice sounds uncomfortably close to the tone you'd use with a particularly slow child.

"We treat her as if her birthday never happens. Instead, we observe something that we can all celebrate together. For example, didn't you officially become Hanako's boyfriend just a few days after her birthday?"

"That's right. July fifteenth."

"So instead of a birthday party, we make an event out of your anniversary. You buy her a present, she gets you something, and I'll order a cake and make arrangements for dinner for two. Make it an occasion that you both can share without the emotional baggage."


That actually makes a lot of sense. Hanako's sense of guilt went into overdrive when anyone made a fuss over her. But a party that celebrated the both of us, and our relationship, I imagined she could get behind that. A nice dinner, we could exchange gifts, maybe spend the night in a hotel. Oh yeah... I looked at my housemate with a new sense of awe. Damn Lilly, how do you do it? My bitter smile erupts into a full blown grin.


"That might really work. We'd have to get her approval, of course."


"And that is your job. Ask her tonight, and let me know what she says in the morning."

I readily agree. I like this idea.

We talk for awhile longer about inconsequential household business until Lilly stands, and calmly brushes crumbs from her lap. "But for now at least, I'm going to bed. Goodnight Hisao."

"G'nite. Thanks Lilly."


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


Hanako and I's bedroom was relatively spartan, partly due to old habits from school, and partly because we know we're moving in a few months. A pair of desks, a dresser, and several bookshelves to hold Hanako's meager library, and a trio of dolls that stare down at me from a top shelf, and a single shelf for mine. A few simple art pieces, Hanako's Phantom of the Opera movie poster, as well as our diplomas and Hanako's First Aid certification, were all that decorate the walls.

As I opened the door, I was all set to use my corny "Is someone wrong on the internet?" joke when I catch her typing intently away on some BBS, or her literary blog. But my high spirits are quickly dampened when I find her offline and already in bed, the sheets pulled up over her shoulder, facing the wall as she sleeps. Even the book on her nightstand looks like it hadn't been touched. That is very unusual.

I walk by her desk and retrieve her fuzzy pink nightgown from the floor and hang it on the back of her chair. These days she really only wore it for evening tea. She had finally started feeling secure enough to wear a long T-shirt and shorts to bed. Because of the nightime heat, I usually slept in a pair of running shorts. But with the last few days of rain, it had turned chilly even with the windows shut; so I figured I'd go ahead and wear my old pajamas.

As I dug down into the dresser, her silence started to bother me. Is she really still upset about earlier?

"Hey, are you alright?" I called over to her casually. Not even sure if she's even awake.

All I get is a muffled, "Uh huh." by way of supplies from beneath the sheets.

Okay, what do I say to that? I concentrate instead on digging out my pajamas and duck into the tiny adjacent bathroom to brush my teeth, take my nighttime meds, and change. Hannako's voice didn't sound terribly reassuring. Maybe she was just avoiding the subject. That would make sense.

Since I was hoping to go running in the morning before work, I set the clock for seven AM. I slide in next to her, and switch off the small bedside lamp.

Not a word or movement comes from Hanako's side of the bed. After a few minutes of silence, my eyes finally adjust to the dark, and I reach over and lay my hand on her hip.

"Are you sure you're okay?" I ask as gently as I can manage.

"I SAID I'M FINE! WOULD YOU J-JUST LEAVE ME ALONE!" She lashes out at me unexpectedly over her shoulder. Whoa! Stunned, I jerk my hand away as if I'd been bitten, backpedaling to my side of the bed.

The awkward silence goes on for at least a minute. Shit, how do I respond to this? Then, I hear a sad sigh in the darkness. A moment later I feel her shift in bed, turning and pressing her head against my chest. "I-I'm sorry." she says in a pained voice.

I put my arm around her shoulder in what I hope is a supportive manner, giving her an extra firm squeeze so she can feel it through her scars.

"It's okay." I try to reply reassuringly. "It's getting close to that time of year again isn't it?" I meant her birthday of course. But I wasn't going to darken her mood further by saying it out loud. "Is that why you've been so on edge lately?"

I feel her inhale, then exhale in a rush. Then she nods her head against my chest. "I'm pathetic."

"Awww, no you're not." I brush my foot affectionately up and down her bare leg. This might be a good time...

"You know, Lilly and I had an idea that we wanted to run past you."

She looks up at me, curious. "Huh?"

I brush the hair away from her scarred cheek. "Lily thought that, maybe, instead of your birthday, it might be more fun from now on to celebrate our anniversary instead. If it's okay with you, we could go out and have a nice dinner. Maybe exchange presents. Lilly even wants to get a cake."

There was silence for a good many moments as Hanako turned the idea over in her head. I hoped that was a good sign.

"W-When?"

"Ohhh." I put on my best thoughtful face, pressing two fingers to my temple. "The first time I told you I loved you? Wait, don't tell me...that was a Tuesday...No, a Wednesday? No, definitely Tuesday. They were serving Teriyaki beef and onions in the cafeteria. The one I hate with those little hard things in it..."

"I'm going to pinch you." She shoots me a comically exaggerated scowl.

"Ahhh, scary!" I laugh. She was teasing. That was a good sign.

She drops the scowl as I laugh, and actually starts pouting cutely. "I-I'm serious." A pouting Hanako. Wow, talk about a rare sight.


"I know you are." I move closer to her, pulling her hips to mine. "It'll be on Wednesday. Our one year anniversary. We were hoping, with your birthday out of the way, you'd feel more like celebrating."

More uncomfortable silence. Is this even going to work after all? Will she think we were just going out of our way for her benefit again?

Eventually she lets out a pleasant sigh. "I think it's a good idea." she says brightly.

Phew. Talk about relieved. "Sweet. I'll tell Lilly tomorrow and we'll hash out the details."

She slips her arms around me and squeezes tightly. The transformation in her mood is such a marked contrast to a few minutes earlier. I'm just glad she's in a good mood. I was starting to becoming uncomfortably aware of my physical reaction to having her hips pressed so firmly against mine.

I decide the hell with my erection and hug her back."Feel better now?"

"Mmmhmm!" she giggles almost girlishly.

We lay there in each others arms for awhile, rubbing our feet and legs playfully together under the sheets and enjoying the warmth of each others bodies. It had taken months for Hanako to feel secure enough for us to sleep together. Hardly surprising after our first clumsy attempt at sex. But once she felt safe with me, she had turned out to be surprisingly affectionate and cuddly in bed. A marked contrast to the submissiveness of our first time together. Which, thank God, was now little more than an unpleasant memory. Our nights together made all the tears and uncomfortable moments as she struggled with her anxieties more than worth it. She may have had Lilly and I swear to never treat her like a child again, but that didn't stop me from making a personal promise to myself that I'd always make her feel beautiful and loved as long as we were together.

By now, the night has gone silent. It sounds like its stopped raining outside.

"You up for a run tomorrow?" I ask after awhile. She nods her head.

"That would be nice." Hanako had bought a second-hand track suit (with a hood of course) and started joining me several times a week on my morning runs. She didn't have my stamina yet, but it was nice to have a running partner again. She enjoyed it because it meant we could spend more time together on the days I worked at the print shop. "I'll even buy you coffee."

"Assuming the rain stays away, it's a date, Miss Ikezawa." She leans up and kisses me."Mmm, goodnight, Mister Nakai."

"See you tomorrow."

She rolls over sleepily and settles against me, both of us soon sound asleep.
Last edited by pandaphil on Sun Mar 17, 2013 6:36 pm, edited 7 times in total.
"The way I see it, every life is a pile of good things and bad things. The good things don't always soften the bad things. But vice versa, the bad things don't necessarily spoil the good things or make them unimportant." ~ The Doctor.

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Re: Hanako/Hisao after Yamaku fics

Post by MutilatedManequin » Sat Mar 16, 2013 6:14 pm

Hmm... *sips from red tea cup*
I like it. I like your Hisao. He dosent pussyfoot around Hanako, and seems more likeable.
There is a method to my madness, a random number of random steps done in no particular order to accomplish god knows what

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Re: Hanako/Hisao after Yamaku fics

Post by pandaphil » Sat Mar 16, 2013 6:59 pm

MutilatedManequin wrote:Hmm... *sips from red tea cup*
I like it. I like your Hisao. He dosent pussyfoot around Hanako, and seems more likeable.
Aww, thanks for the comment. I was starting to wonder if anyone really cared for it.

I like to think that even with Hanako's issues, the two of them have been together for a year, and are at the point where they both finally feel comfortable with each other. The trick of course is to not go overboard on the puppy-dog aspect of their relationship and people get sick of them. :)
"The way I see it, every life is a pile of good things and bad things. The good things don't always soften the bad things. But vice versa, the bad things don't necessarily spoil the good things or make them unimportant." ~ The Doctor.

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Re: Hanako/Hisao after Yamaku fics

Post by YZQ » Sat Mar 16, 2013 9:53 pm

Love the way you slip in meta references (the "Someone is wrong on the Internet" pic and her Bad End).

Can we have a non-formal setting for the dinner? I know you dig Hanako in her evening gown and opera gloves. I much prefer that midriff-baring top and jeans pic.
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"...since love and fear can hardly exist together, if we must choose between them, it is far safer to be feared than loved. However, it is important above all to avoid being hated."

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Re: Hanako/Hisao after Yamaku fics

Post by pandaphil » Sat Mar 16, 2013 10:25 pm

YZQ wrote:Love the way you slip in meta references (the "Someone is wrong on the Internet" pic and her Bad End).

Can we have a non-formal setting for the dinner? I know you dig Hanako in her evening gown and opera gloves. I much prefer that midriff-baring top and jeans pic.
I don't know, I was hoping to have a dinner scene set in that same restaurant from Lilly's arc. Maybe an informal scene with Lilly afterwards with cake and tea, where they exchange presents?

Honestly I adore that pic of Hanako as well. Its a wonderful sign of her growing and getting over her shyness.
"The way I see it, every life is a pile of good things and bad things. The good things don't always soften the bad things. But vice versa, the bad things don't necessarily spoil the good things or make them unimportant." ~ The Doctor.

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Re: Hanako/Hisao after Yamaku fics

Post by YZQ » Sat Mar 16, 2013 10:33 pm

Solution: Do both, although I imagine Hisao is going to bust the bank this time round. Dating aint cheap, buster.
"Nothing is beneath man. Everything is permitted."

"...since love and fear can hardly exist together, if we must choose between them, it is far safer to be feared than loved. However, it is important above all to avoid being hated."

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Re: Hanako/Hisao after Yamaku fics

Post by pandaphil » Sat Mar 16, 2013 10:40 pm

YZQ wrote:Solution: Do both, although I imagine Hisao is going to bust the bank this time round. Dating aint cheap, buster.
That's what I was thinking.

Its a good thing they have a rich roomate who loves them both who'd be happy to treat them to a romantic dinner.
"The way I see it, every life is a pile of good things and bad things. The good things don't always soften the bad things. But vice versa, the bad things don't necessarily spoil the good things or make them unimportant." ~ The Doctor.

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Re: Hanako/Hisao after Yamaku fics

Post by YZQ » Sat Mar 16, 2013 11:37 pm

I'm sure at some point, Hisao will realise that he has to support the dating expenses on his own.
"Nothing is beneath man. Everything is permitted."

"...since love and fear can hardly exist together, if we must choose between them, it is far safer to be feared than loved. However, it is important above all to avoid being hated."

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Re: Hanako/Hisao after Yamaku fics

Post by pandaphil » Sun Mar 17, 2013 12:28 am

YZQ wrote:I'm sure at some point, Hisao will realise that he has to support the dating expenses on his own.
Oh he will. I'm not going to have him living off Lilly's generosity all the time. The dinner is something shes going to insist on as her gift to the both of them. With Akira gone, and no class to look after, Lilly has her own issues with loneliness and the desire to be needed. This is her way of dealing with that.
"The way I see it, every life is a pile of good things and bad things. The good things don't always soften the bad things. But vice versa, the bad things don't necessarily spoil the good things or make them unimportant." ~ The Doctor.

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Re: Hanako/Hisao after Yamaku fics

Post by YZQ » Sun Mar 17, 2013 12:34 am

Bonus points if Hanako actually picked up the subtle hints that Lily needs some help herself, and cook up something with Hisao to hook her up with someone they know.
"Nothing is beneath man. Everything is permitted."

"...since love and fear can hardly exist together, if we must choose between them, it is far safer to be feared than loved. However, it is important above all to avoid being hated."

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Re: Hanako/Hisao after Yamaku fics

Post by pandaphil » Sun Mar 17, 2013 12:49 am

YZQ wrote:Bonus points if Hanako actually picked up the subtle hints that Lily needs some help herself, and cook up something with Hisao to hook her up with someone they know.
That's a great idea!

Actually I've got a story in mind that takes place after college graduation that has her seeing someone.

This next chapter will have a scene that brings up Lilly's loneliness.


That being said, I appreciate the input. It forces me to think about this stuff.
"The way I see it, every life is a pile of good things and bad things. The good things don't always soften the bad things. But vice versa, the bad things don't necessarily spoil the good things or make them unimportant." ~ The Doctor.

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Re: Hanako/Hisao after Yamaku fics

Post by YZQ » Sun Mar 17, 2013 12:51 am

It would seem obvious to me, but I would have thought Hanako realised that if she is actively trying to help Lily with her issues, she would have less time and energy to dwell on her own. She is sensitive to cues; she could use them to see if others are uncomfortable in some ways.
"Nothing is beneath man. Everything is permitted."

"...since love and fear can hardly exist together, if we must choose between them, it is far safer to be feared than loved. However, it is important above all to avoid being hated."

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Re: Hanako/Hisao after Yamaku fics

Post by Negativedarke » Sun Mar 17, 2013 8:57 am

pandaphil wrote:
MutilatedManequin wrote:Hmm... *sips from red tea cup*
I like it. I like your Hisao. He dosent pussyfoot around Hanako, and seems more likeable.
Aww, thanks for the comment. I was starting to wonder if anyone really cared for it.

I like to think that even with Hanako's issues, the two of them have been together for a year, and are at the point where they both finally feel comfortable with each other. The trick of course is to not go overboard on the puppy-dog aspect of their relationship and people get sick of them. :)
True that. In any long term relationship with Hanako, Hisao is going to have to deal with her bad days. And Hanako is going to have to deal with how they affect Hisao. Shutting herself away isn't always going to be an option.
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Re: Hanako/Hisao after Yamaku fics

Post by Brogurt » Sun Mar 17, 2013 9:36 pm

For the first one, the "prologue", I was rather happy with the setup, given the mention of Hanako not wanting to be a burden, and even wanting to live independently of the other two. That would make an interesting thing to write about, but instead we got Hanako crying over dropping a teacup.

When you type something up in notepad (if you insist on using notepad), just turn the Word Wrap setting off before copy&pasting into the submission form.

Also, lots of summary, and I do not believe this to be a good thing. Yeah, she's come out of her shell some more, and everything was shit earlier. But we kind of expect that to happen, so I don't think it deserves mentioning unless things are not going as planned. Which is the case in this fic from time to time such as the upcoming birthday, and that's alright. But a recap of what happened in the route is not necessary.

Also yeah there were some grammar problems and stuff but I don't wanna point out all of them

Mite b cool though

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Re: Hanako/Hisao after Yamaku fics

Post by pandaphil » Mon Mar 18, 2013 12:29 am

Brogurt wrote:For the first one, the "prologue", I was rather happy with the setup, given the mention of Hanako not wanting to be a burden, and even wanting to live independently of the other two. That would make an interesting thing to write about, but instead we got Hanako crying over dropping a teacup.

When you type something up in notepad (if you insist on using notepad), just turn the Word Wrap setting off before copy&pasting into the submission form.

Also, lots of summary, and I do not believe this to be a good thing. Yeah, she's come out of her shell some more, and everything was shit earlier. But we kind of expect that to happen, so I don't think it deserves mentioning unless things are not going as planned. Which is the case in this fic from time to time such as the upcoming birthday, and that's alright. But a recap of what happened in the route is not necessary.
You're right I guess. I did admit I'm not really a writer. Its really just a bunch of random ideas strung together.

If it helps, shes only going to have a couple of bad days. The cup incident was mostly stress induced over her birthday. And her actual birthday. The rest of the time shes going to be mostly positive.

I'll try to stop with the references to the VN.
"The way I see it, every life is a pile of good things and bad things. The good things don't always soften the bad things. But vice versa, the bad things don't necessarily spoil the good things or make them unimportant." ~ The Doctor.

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