Developments (Post-Lilly NE) [Complete, 2015-08-11]

WORDS WORDS WORDS
User avatar
Mirage_GSM
Posts: 6039
Joined: Mon Jun 28, 2010 2:24 am
Location: Germany

Re: Developments (Post-Lilly Neutral End) - Interlude 3, 2/1

Post by Mirage_GSM » Thu Feb 13, 2014 6:18 pm

That's actually a very interesting story concept... I'd almost be tempted to try it, but I fear it would end up a tragedy, and I don't like writing those.
I wouldn't use Hanako by the way - there's another character who could be harmed more by the publication of her secret than Hanako ever could...
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.

User avatar
SpunkySix
Posts: 2858
Joined: Mon Feb 03, 2014 11:03 pm
Location: Lost in thought... somewhere.

Re: Developments (Post-Lilly Neutral End) - Interlude 3, 2/1

Post by SpunkySix » Thu Feb 13, 2014 6:29 pm

Mirage_GSM wrote:That's actually a very interesting story concept... I'd almost be tempted to try it, but I fear it would end up a tragedy, and I don't like writing those.
I wouldn't use Hanako by the way - there's another character who could be harmed more by the publication of her secret than Hanako ever could...
Does she have drills, maybe?
"Spunky at his Spunkyest/Spunkiest"
"Tissues to the extreme!"

bhtooefr
Posts: 1353
Joined: Thu Sep 19, 2013 5:20 pm
Location: Newark, OH
Contact:

Re: Developments (Post-Lilly Neutral End) - Interlude 3, 2/1

Post by bhtooefr » Thu Feb 13, 2014 6:42 pm

Remember, this is Yurimaku, where seven of the eleven girls in 3-3 (five if you don't count Hanako or Miki - but Naomi and Natsume bat for that team in damn near everything (especially things released by devs) outside of the VN, Ritsu apparently bats for that team in her source material, and Molly apparently batted for that team in her unreleased source material based on what I've read) are into girls.

I honestly don't think anyone would give a damn about that one.

Hell, depending on how Emi knows about Misha's orientation and obsession with Shizune, the entire student body probably already knows. (There's always what TheHivemind said (I think in the Ask thread) he was trying to do, which was make Emi a past FWB of Misha's, but that didn't make it into release, and I'm getting a vibe that Emi's straight as an arrow.)

I was gonna say Shizune or Emi would be the target, but Shizune's secret coming out would probably be good for her, Emi's coming out wouldn't be bad in the long run.

Lilly's, on the other hand, bad shit would go down.
bhtooefr's one-shot and drabble thread
Enjoy The Silence - Sequel to All I Have (complete)
Enough is enough! I have had it with these motherfucking zombies on this motherfucking forum!

User avatar
Oscar Wildecat
Posts: 478
Joined: Sun Jul 28, 2013 7:28 pm
Location: A short drive west of Kingdom Come.

Re: Developments (Post-Lilly Neutral End) - Interlude 3, 2/1

Post by Oscar Wildecat » Thu Feb 13, 2014 6:51 pm

They could publish an exposé on the secret life of Rin, confusing half of the student body while puzzling the other half.

But yeah, Ooe's attitude toward journalism works well for a major city newspaper -- a school publication, not so much.
I like all the girls in KS, but empathize with Hanako the most.
"Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience." - Mark Twain
“Diplomacy is the art of telling people to go to hell in such a way that they ask for directions.” - Winston Churchill
Checkout SordidEuphemism's Logo Thread.

User avatar
Mirage_GSM
Posts: 6039
Joined: Mon Jun 28, 2010 2:24 am
Location: Germany

Re: Developments (Post-Lilly Neutral End) - Interlude 3, 2/1

Post by Mirage_GSM » Thu Feb 13, 2014 6:57 pm

bhtooefr wrote:Remember, this is Yurimaku, where seven of the eleven girls in 3-3 (five if you don't count Hanako or Miki - but Naomi and Natsume bat for that team in damn near everything (especially things released by devs) outside of the VN, Ritsu apparently bats for that team in her source material, and Molly apparently batted for that team in her unreleased source material based on what I've read) are into girls.

I honestly don't think anyone would give a damn about that one.
None of those are canon, and Ritsu bats for not much more than her drums and cakes in the source material.
Given that Yamaku is a pretty tolerant place on the whole, the backlash probably wouldn' be as bad as in a normal school, but this is still Japan where stuff like homosexuality isn't as accepted as in western countries.
(There's always what TheHivemind said (I think in the Ask thread) he was trying to do, which was make Emi a past FWB of Misha's, but that didn't make it into release,...
He never said nor wrote that.
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.

bhtooefr
Posts: 1353
Joined: Thu Sep 19, 2013 5:20 pm
Location: Newark, OH
Contact:

Re: Developments (Post-Lilly Neutral End) - Interlude 3, 2/1

Post by bhtooefr » Thu Feb 13, 2014 7:07 pm

Mirage_GSM wrote:
(There's always what TheHivemind said (I think in the Ask thread) he was trying to do, which was make Emi a past FWB of Misha's, but that didn't make it into release,...
He never said nor wrote that.
I took this as a Suspiciously Specific Denial:
TheHivemind wrote:
Liminaut wrote:Heh. I thought that comment meant that Emi and Misha had been friends with benefits at one point. I may have been reading a little too much into it :-)
Ha ha ha yes how ridiculous.
<_<
>_>
bhtooefr's one-shot and drabble thread
Enjoy The Silence - Sequel to All I Have (complete)
Enough is enough! I have had it with these motherfucking zombies on this motherfucking forum!

inthewind
Posts: 53
Joined: Fri May 31, 2013 11:08 am

Re: Developments (Post-Lilly Neutral End) - Interlude 3, 2/1

Post by inthewind » Thu Feb 13, 2014 7:49 pm

... I wasn't asleep and welcome to the Shanghai!

User avatar
Blank Mage
Posts: 304
Joined: Sat Dec 07, 2013 5:29 am
Location: My own personal hell, with a metered internet connection.

Re: Developments (Post-Lilly Neutral End) - Interlude 3, 2/1

Post by Blank Mage » Thu Feb 13, 2014 8:13 pm

THe reason I thought Hanako would be a good choice was that Natsume is one of the exceedingly few people Hanako is on speaking terms with, having spent the last three years avoiding all contact. Shoving her back to how she was, crushing that small trust, would be a much bigger deal than Misha. Okay, I'm back on topic now. Probably.
And we're back.
-----------
"I wish I could convey to you just how socially inept I am, but I can't."
"I think you just did."
"No, I really, truly haven't."

User avatar
Blasphemy
Posts: 167
Joined: Sat Aug 10, 2013 6:26 am

Re: Developments (Post-Lilly Neutral End) - Interlude 3, 2/1

Post by Blasphemy » Thu Feb 13, 2014 8:46 pm

The whole school paper thing is a bit alien to me anyways. I don't know, smaller 'what's happening at school' issues here and there are normal. But, at least here in Germany, I'd be rather surprised if a well regarded school had a school newspaper where you find articles about rather private relationships and the like. Simply because I can see that backfire way too quickly.

Now I'm sure there's actually plenty schools where this does exist but then, looking at Yamaku specifically, I have a hard time imagining the school board allowing this. Again, not a school paper in general but one that publishes rather private affairs. That hasn't actually happened in 'Developments' though unless I'm forgetting s.th.

User avatar
Blank Mage
Posts: 304
Joined: Sat Dec 07, 2013 5:29 am
Location: My own personal hell, with a metered internet connection.

Re: Developments (Post-Lilly Neutral End) - Interlude 3, 2/1

Post by Blank Mage » Thu Feb 13, 2014 9:05 pm

Blasphemy wrote:The whole school paper thing is a bit alien to me anyways. I don't know, smaller 'what's happening at school' issues here and there are normal. But, at least here in Germany, I'd be rather surprised if a well regarded school had a school newspaper where you find articles about rather private relationships and the like. Simply because I can see that backfire way too quickly.

Now I'm sure there's actually plenty schools where this does exist but then, looking at Yamaku specifically, I have a hard time imagining the school board allowing this. Again, not a school paper in general but one that publishes rather private affairs. That hasn't actually happened in 'Developments' though unless I'm forgetting s.th.
True, but then why is she still collecting all the gossip?
And we're back.
-----------
"I wish I could convey to you just how socially inept I am, but I can't."
"I think you just did."
"No, I really, truly haven't."

User avatar
dewelar
Posts: 1228
Joined: Sun Jul 14, 2013 6:09 pm
Location: The Fifth Thing

Re: Developments (Post-Lilly Neutral End) - Interlude 3, 2/1

Post by dewelar » Thu Feb 13, 2014 9:14 pm

Okay, I guess I need to clarify again.

The info that Takako is collecting for Natsume is not for publication. It's for Natsume to use for her own purposes, one of which is to get people to talk to her by threatening to reveal it if they don't. Yes, it's ethically screwed-up, and yes, it's that way intentionally.

And yes, this Natsume would make for an interesting character as outlined in the previous posts :) .
Rin is orthogonal to everything.
Stuff I've written: Developments, a continuation of Lilly's (bad? neutral?) ending - COMPLETE!

User avatar
dewelar
Posts: 1228
Joined: Sun Jul 14, 2013 6:09 pm
Location: The Fifth Thing

Developments, Chapter 34

Post by dewelar » Tue Feb 18, 2014 1:37 am

*KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK*

I look up from the book I'm reading and silently tell whoever's knocking to go away. It's been nearly a day now, and I'm not ready to talk to Hisao yet. I still have my phone turned off, so I wouldn't be surprised if it's him.

*KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK*

Just go away...


The trouble is, I'm probably more ready to talk to him than I am to anyone else at this point. Besides, I can't really think of anyone else who would be coming here now. When a voice does come from the other side of the door, it gives me a bit of a jolt. "Hanako? It's Emi. I came by to see how you were doing."

Emi? What the hell is SHE doing here?

If there's someone at the bottom of the list of people I'm ready to talk to, it's her. Did Hisao tell her what happened, and now she wants to come over here and gloat over my failure? Or, even worse, take pity on me for it? I stay silent, hoping she'll leave, but a few moments later, she yells something else. "Hanako, if you're in there, listen, okay?"

Don't you know when to give up?

"Hisao's got something important to tell you. He wanted to come see you, but he thinks you're upset with him so he didn't think you'd talk to him. That's why I came up here instead."

What? Hisao thinks I'M upset with HIM?

I suppose I should have expected this, because it's rapidly become a pattern. Every time something goes sideways, I blame myself and he blames himself. It would be nice to be able to break this cycle, but I don't think I'll be the one to do it. Just maybe, though, I can push Hisao in that direction. I should try to do it before tomorrow, but I wonder how much I can rely on Emi. At the very least, I think I can trust her not to lie to Hisao about what I tell her.

Here goes nothing.

I straighten myself up and walk hesitantly toward the door, opening it just enough to be able to see Emi on the other side. There's a maddening smile on her face, and at first all I can get out is "I..."

I can't let her get to me now.

I close my eyes, and I force my next words out. "I'm...n-not upset w-with...Hisao!" I say...with a little more force than I would have liked. It was loud enough to cause Emi to jump back slightly.

"Okay, okay! No need to shout! Um...I don't know what went on between you two yesterday, but it seems like you're both pretty upset about it."

You...don't know what went on?

Now that my head is clearing, I start to regret what I was thinking earlier. I especially shouldn't have thought that about Hisao. The darker parts of myself come out more at times like this, and it's hard not to hate how it makes me feel.

Emi's watching me expectantly, waiting for me to say something. For now, I'll play along with her and be vague. "I...made a mistake. I-I'm...upset...w-with myself, n-not...Hisao."

Emi pinches her face after I say that. "Yeah, if I had to guess, he's more upset with himself than he is with you, too." Thus, the pattern is complete. It's reassuring in a way. Knowing that, I can almost look forward to lunch tomorrow. "But if that's the case, then you really shouldn't be closing him out, right? I mean, that's kinda why he thinks you're upset with him."

Even if I don't understand her motive for saying this, she's probably right. I look down at the floor, disappointed in myself for not having realized this would happen. "I...know. I just c-can't..." My voice trails off, as I stop myself before saying too much. This is a conversation I should be having with Hisao, not Emi. What I don't understand is why she's encouraging me to do that. "W-why are you...d-doing this?"

"Huh? Doing what?"

Acting like you're trying to help me.

After a moment, her face brightens. I think I might envy her for being able to smile so easily. "Ohhhhh...well, I told you, I wanted to see how you were doing."

But WHY?

I suppose the answer to that is obvious, though. "F-for...Hisao?"

"Yeah," Emi replies, "but...not just for him, you know? I mean, I know you kinda prefer to avoid people and all that, but I was hoping maybe you didn't think you had to avoid me." I'm not sure what she's getting at, and...maybe she isn't either, because she laughs nervously. "That probably came out weird, but...anyway, I'm happy you opened the door for me, Hanako. Do you want me to tell Hisao anything?"

I can't tell her what I'm really thinking, so there's not really much I can say. Still, I should at least give her some kind of response, if only for Hisao's sake. "Tell him...n-not to worry. I-I'll be at lunch...tomorrow."

"Got it!" Emi says, a little too cheerfully for me in my current frame of mind. I really need for this conversation to end, so I start to close my door. As I do, she adds, "Take care of yourself, okay?"

Looking at her, I can tell she means it. Like the last time we talked, the air seems almost...friendly. When I learned we were rivals, I don't know what I expected our encounters to be like, but it definitely wasn't this. The regret for what I was thinking earlier deepens, but I can't exactly admit to it. I settle for nodding and saying, "Okay," before I close the door.

Sitting back down on the bed, I try to process what just happened. Since I made my latest mistake, I haven't been able to face myself, much less anybody else. The feeling was already starting to subside, but I needed the right motivation to set myself in motion again. The fact that Emi provided it is a little ironic, though.

No, actually, that's not fair. Up until a few days ago, Emi and I hadn't so much as said "hello" to each other unless Hisao or Lilly was there. I suppose I only know as much about Emi as she does about me, which is whatever other people have told us. Even when she approached me in the library, she was pretty skittish at first. Once the ice had been broken, though, she didn't seem bothered at all. It was like we were meeting for the first time, and I suppose in a sense we were.

So maybe...this is just who she is?

The conversation we had that day played a role in the situation I'm in now. I had already made up my mind that I wanted Hisao to be my first in every important way, but knowing that I had competition made things feel more...urgent. Then, yesterday – was that really only yesterday? – when Natsume told me about them kissing at the track, things spun out of control.

And now Emi's on her way to see him.

I can't begrudge Emi her opportunity to spend the day with Hisao. This is all part of that fresh start that Hisao wanted, and I had the first opportunity yesterday. Nothing she did caused it to turn out miserably – just my own insecurity over what might be. I know I should have been patient, but I couldn't shake the feeling that I was falling behind Emi again.

One thing Hisao said sticks in my head, which was that neither of us was ready for what we nearly did yesterday. I wonder, did he mean he wasn't ready to have sex at all, or just with me? If it's the second one, I can only imagine what's going on right now...

Ugh...I need to stop thinking about this.

I look around my room for something to occupy my mind, and my eyes light on the form I got from the Student Council. I suppose, if we're going to be using the tea room tomorrow, I should take official responsibility for it. As I think about heading to the main building, my stomach reminds me I haven't eaten much since lunch yesterday. Normally I wouldn't go to the cafeteria during the break, but since we never went shopping, there's not much left here.

The form is short, so I quickly fill it out and sign it. I need to clean myself up, so I check to make sure Yoshimura isn't in the bathroom. I quickly take a shower, then get dressed and head out. Fortunately, it's mid-afternoon, so the grounds are quiet. The main building looks to be empty when I arrive, and I start to make my way up to the Student Council room. I intend to just slip the paper under the door, but before I get there the door opens, and a figure appears.

"Hi~ hi~ Hanako!" Misha calls out to me, and I instinctively retreat a couple of steps. "What are you doing here?"

Today seems to be the day for running into the people I least wanted to see. However, at least I can give Misha the form and get over to the cafeteria without having to deal with Shizune as well. I take the folded-up paper out of my bag and extend my hand towards her. "H-here."

"Hm? Oh, is that the form for the utility room?" I nod, and she takes it from me. As she opens it up, I start to edge my way around Misha toward the stairwell. As she looks the form over, she frowns. "Aw...you filled it out anyway," she says, and for some reason she sounds disappointed.

...anyway?

"I guess I'll give this to Shicchan and she can decide whether to keep it or not." I'm not quite sure I'm following this. Wasn't that form supposed to be important? Misha tucks the paper into her bag, then turns back to me with a broad grin. "You must be excited~ for tomorrow, Hanako!"

"Um...e-excited?"

"Right! Right! About Lilly coming back!"

"C-coming...back?"

"Yes~! I hear she'll be back at Yamaku tomorrow night! Is that true?"

Lilly's...coming back?

What. What? WHAT?!


For a moment, my mind is racing so fast that my body won't even move. Somewhere on the fringe of my consciousness, I hear Misha saying, "What's wrong, Hanako? You didn't know?"

My voice comes out, sounding to my ears like it's coming from a long distance away. "I...wh-where did you..."

"Hideaki sent us a text message this morning!"

This morning...of course this would be happening when I've rendered myself unreachable. But tomorrow? Acting that quickly isn't like Lilly. Did she know about this the last time we talked and not tell me? Hisao must have known, too. Maybe that's what he wanted to tell me, but instead I had to find out from Misha.

"Hanako! Why don't you look happy?"

Her voice is still only barely registering. This is too much for me to process and also have to deal with Misha. Almost independently of my brain, my mouth forms a maddeningly familiar refrain. "I...I...I'VEGOTTOGODOSOMETHING!"

"Hanako?"

Misha is between me and the main entrance, so I bolt for the stairwell. There's no way I can go to the cafeteria now, so my legs carry me automatically to the only other spot I can feel safe: the tea room. Once I get there, I grab the sides of the table and start to take deep breaths.

I need to focus.

Assuming Misha is telling the truth, Lilly is coming back to Yamaku. Even if it's only temporary, it should be the most welcome news I've had in a long time, but here I am nearly having a panic attack about it. I wish I could say that it was hearing the news from Misha that started me teetering, but I know that's only part of it.

After a few moments, I can feel the panic starting to ebb. I need to take the time to sort out my thoughts, and here is as good a place as any to do it. Even if it does feel a bit empty without Lilly or Hisao, it's quiet, and likely to stay that way for a while, which for now is enough. Certainly it's better than the cafeteria, and right now I feel like my room has turned into an echo chamber.

Well, if I'm going to stay here for a while, I might as well make myself some tea.

Before I start the process of preparing the tea, I check the cupboard. As I thought, there are a few packages of instant ramen here, so I decide to prepare one of those as well. It's not much, but it's better than nothing. As I wait for the water to heat up, I take a look around the tea room and wonder: When Hisao and Lilly do come back here, what will things be like? As if to answer the question, a voice that has haunted me over the past few days intrudes upon my mind.

"I've come back, Hanako. I've come back to reclaim what is rightfully mine, and there's nothing you can do about it."

Apparently, it's even going to do so when I'm awake now. Lilly coming back and getting back together with Hisao has literally been my nightmare. It used to be enough to remind myself that Lilly was two continents away, and had told me herself that they were through. Tomorrow, half of that will no longer be true. Hisao has said that he's over Lilly, but that could just be a function of distance or of Lilly saying she's over him.

I really need to stop this...somehow, I need to break this cycle.

I brace myself against the counter and close my eyes, trying to banish the sight of Lilly's face, saying those words and embracing Hisao. Fortunately, the sound of the tea kettle is enough to drag me back to reality, at least for now. I finish preparing the tea and ramen, and sit down to try and gather my thoughts. Again.

Insecurity-based fantasies aside, I really have missed Lilly a lot these past two weeks. Our last phone call may have been somewhat strained, but that doesn't mean she's not still my best friend, the best friend I've ever had, and probably the best I ever will have. Had she been here, I know I'd be feeling a lot better about things. At the very least, her calm personality might have kept me on a more even keel. It'll be good to have that kind of influence again.

Of course, there's another area where that influence could have a profound effect. After all, Lilly did encourage me to pursue Hisao, and after my latest mistake I'm at a loss about how to move forward. If there's anyone who would have good advice on the subject, it's her. I just have to be able to set my nightmares aside so that I can listen to it.

That's not the only reason I'm leery of accepting her help, either. A part of me is scared that if I do, our relationship will revert to what it was before: that I'll be her project again. After she started dating Hisao, my relationship with Lilly began to move away from that, and shortly before she left I finally felt like she might see me as an equal. I just hope that when she returns, all that progress won't be undone.

Well, none of those questions are going to be answered now. I'll have to check my phone once I get back, because no doubt Lilly at least left a message, and maybe Hisao as well. Thinking about the whole situation, I almost laugh, because if nothing else thinking about it has been a distraction from thinking about what happened yesterday.

Goodbye Charybdis, hello Scylla...

As I take another sip of tea, I hear a knock at the door to the tea room. I'm tempted to ignore it, but I've tried that once today already without success. If it turns out to be Hisao, I think I might even be ready to talk to him now. Sighing, I get up and walk towards the door and open it to find Misha.

Thus do I land on Thrinacia.

"Oh, you're here~!" she says, clapping her hands and grinning. "Shicchan asked me to check with you about the form! Are you officially taking responsibility, or will Miss Satou still be responsible when she returns?"

That definitely sounded like Shizune. "D-did you...t-tell her I d-didn't know...sh-she was..."

"Wahahaha~! Of course I did! Shicchan said that you should always plan for such...con-tin-gen-cies? So, you should know~!" Misha seems to take satisfaction in the pronouncement, but when I shake my head in response her face slips into a frown. "Shicchan won't be happy about having to wait~ but what's done is done." After finishing her statement, Misha hesitates, looking at me curiously. "Are you all right, Hanako? You look troubled."

I'd prefer not to have to answer that question at all. I'd like to say, "Of course I'm not all right, and right now your presence isn't helping," but I can't. Everybody seems to be worrying about me all of a sudden – first Emi, now Misha. Do I look that much worse than I usually do? I absent-mindedly bring my hand to the lock of hair that covers my face, making sure it's in place, then look down at the ground.

"Hanako?" Misha says, and I realize I haven't responsed to her question. "Can I...ask you something?" While she's still talking in her odd cadence, her tone is much quieter than usual. I hazard a glance up at her face, and I see a rare serious expression on it. It's enough to make me curious, so I nod in affirmation. After another short pause she says, in the same quiet tone, "Did you and Lilly have a fight?"

That takes me by surprise, and my mouth drops open. "N-no!" For the second time today, I cringe at the volume of my own voice. "W-why w-would...you s-say that?"

"Well, why else would you react like that when you found out she was coming back? You and Lilly are best friends, right~? Right~! Just like me and Shicchan~! I know when Shicchan and I argue sometimes..." Misha's voice trails off, then rallies again to conclude, "So I thought maybe that was it!"

"No, th-that's..." I stop myself before saying anything else, but continue to shake my head. Some of the things we said during that phone call were a little pointed, but that doesn't make it a fight...does it? It was certainly nothing compared to some of the exchanges Lilly has had with Shizune.

But then, they're family. That makes a difference. We only PLAYED at being family.

I shake my head even more forcefully. Even if, for some reason, Lilly considered it a fight, I don't. I glance up again, and Misha is watching me with an odd expression. She hasn't moved from the doorway, and I'm starting to feel a bit claustrophobic. Just as I'm about to ask her to leave, she suddenly speaks up. "I wonder what Hicchan thinks about all this. Do you think he and Lilly will get back together~?"

From the way Misha is studying my face, it's obviously not an innocent question. Despite myself, I wince and take a step backward so that I'm leaning against the table. "I d-don't know," is the best response I can stammer out. Hoping to keep this conversation from being prolonged any further, I finally ask, "M-Misha...c-could you...p-please leave? I...n-need to...c-clean up."

"Okay~, but before I go," Misha says, still looking serious, "Akira sent me a message a few days ago. She asked me how you were, because you hadn't written to her since she left. She asked how things were between you and Hicchan. I didn't understand then, but~ I think I do now." My blood starts to run cold as I realize where this is headed. Misha pauses and looks down. "You weren't happy about Lilly coming back, and you don't want Hicchan and Lilly to get back together...because you like Hicchan."

Even though I'd tried to prepare for it, the words hit me like a physical blow, and I reach behind me for the chair. Once I find it, I collapse into it and try to take deep breaths to keep calm. I know I need to respond, but right now I'm finding that very difficult.

"You don't need~ to answer, Hanako, but there's something else you need to know." There's an almost conspiratorial tone to Misha's voice now as she takes a few steps into the room. "Now that Lilly's coming back, Shicchan wants to see her back together with Hisao. She was very upset~ when her plan to get them to talk before Lilly left didn't work. She thinks it would make them both~ happy."

Shizune...wants them back together?

"But~!" Misha continues, "if she knew it would make you unhappy~, that might change her mind."

Misha, I wish you'd stop talking so I can catch up with your train of thought.

"W-what are y-you...t-talking about?"

"You know~ there's a rumor going around that Hisao and Emi are dating! Hisao denied it, but I don't think Shicchan believed him. Needless to say, she was not happy~ at~ all~! Shicchan has warned him to stay away from her, because she thinks being around Emi is dangerous!"

My own thoughts aside, I understand why Shizune would think that. The very first time they met, Emi plowed into him while running down the hall. Still, dangerous is a pretty strong word, and for some reason I find myself wanting to defend her. "I...d-don't think..."

Misha cuts me off before I can finish. "So~ having him get back together with Lilly would also~ keep him away from Emi! But! If Hicchan were with you, it would be the same thing, right~? So, is it true? Do you like Hicchan?"

As Misha has been talking, I've felt myself blushing more and more deeply. By now my entire face is probably the color of beni shoga. A part of me wants to deny it just so I can be done with it, but if it would put me at odds with Shizune then it would be more trouble than it's worth. Taking a deep breath and turning my gaze back to Misha, I say as clearly as I can, "Yes, I do."

Misha's grin snaps back into place, and her voice returns to its typical jarring volume. "Wahaha~! Okay! And if Akira knows, then Lilly knows, and she must be okay with it, right~?" Faced with this renewed onslaught, all I can do is nod in agreement. "Right~! So, have you confessed yet?"

And now I'm very glad I've finished my tea.

"M-maybe w-we can...talk about this...s-some other time?"

"Oh~! Right, you were leaving, weren't you?" Misha moves back to the doorway. "I'll leave it to you, then~! I'll talk to Shicchan and let you know how it goes, okay~?" Before I can even say anything, Misha disappears from the doorway. I close my eyes for a moment, trying to recover, when I hear Misha's voice from the doorway again. "Hanako," she says, returning to her serious tone, "I hope your first confession turns out better than mine did."

By the time I open my eyes and look over, she's already disappeared again. I'm not entirely sure I didn't imagine it, but even if I didn't I wouldn't know what to say in return. After a few moments of silence, I get up and close the door, vowing not to answer the next knock, then slump back down in the chair.

Once I've calmed down, I make myself a fresh pot of tea. For a while, I relax by playing chess against myself, trying to remember some of the strategies I learned in the book I read a couple of weeks ago. It feels like a long time since Hisao and I played, and I hope that we get a chance tomorrow.

We certainly won't lack for things to talk about, either.

I lose myself in the activity for a while, until finally I glance outside and notice that the sun has long since set, and the sky is now black. I really don't want to go back to my room right now, but I don't want to stay in the tea room any longer, either. Instead, I decide to go up to the roof. There shouldn't be anybody up there right now.

I climb the stairs, the push open the door and emerge into the fairly bright moonlight. I used to come up here a lot more, especially before I became friends with Lilly. Very few people would come here, which always surprised me, since the view of the area is beautiful. Since then, I've only come up here for the occasional lunch period, and since Lilly left not at all.

The coolness feels nice on my skin, so for a few moments I just stand there and enjoy the night air. I think about the conversation I just had. Talking to Misha by herself was less intimidating than I expected, probably because her partner in crime wasn't here. Misha is loud, and can be obnoxious, but she's not intense in the way that Shizune usually is.

Eventually, I walk over to the fence to look over toward the dorms. I wonder briefly what Hisao might be doing right now, and try in vain to keep depressing options from coming to mind. After a while, I turn to look at the sky, and I can see Orihime and Hikoboshi off to the west. I think back to the wish I made at Tanabata, and wonder if they're laughing at all the mistakes I've made in trying to fulfill it. I take some comfort in knowing that, even for all of that, there's still some hope for what I wrote that morning.

Then I remember that Lilly wrote something, too. I never asked her what it was, and since I can't read Braille I had no other way to know. For all I know, her wish involved Hisao, too. I couldn't blame her if it did, especially since I hadn't told her about my own feelings yet. I could barely admit them to myself at the time. Yet here I am, two weeks later, willing to admit that I have feelings for Hisao not just to myself, but to Misha of all people.

I think...I might know why.

During my last session with Miss Yumi, when I told her I'd canceled my trip with Naomi and Natsume, she said something that I didn't quite grasp at the time. I don't remember her exact words, but it was something about things not being as difficult the next time once you've tried to do them once. I think that, maybe, this might be the same thing. My mind starts to wander, pondering other things to which that principle might apply, and I look up again at the stars.

I just need to find the right way to try.

====

Previous | Next
Last edited by dewelar on Thu Nov 20, 2014 11:22 pm, edited 6 times in total.
Rin is orthogonal to everything.
Stuff I've written: Developments, a continuation of Lilly's (bad? neutral?) ending - COMPLETE!

User avatar
forgetmenot
Posts: 375
Joined: Mon Feb 25, 2013 4:33 pm
Location: Pacific Northwest.

Re: Developments (Post-Lilly Neutral End) - Chapter 34 up 2/

Post by forgetmenot » Tue Feb 18, 2014 1:48 am

Of all the ways for poor Hanako to find out Lilly was coming back, this is probably the worst one. Even Shizune's presence probably would have eased some of the tension.

Thumbs-up on the chapter. Buckling up for what I'm assuming to be a very, very bumpy ride to the finish.

User avatar
Leaty
Posts: 515
Joined: Wed May 09, 2012 9:18 pm
Location: Exile

Re: Developments, Chapter 34

Post by Leaty » Tue Feb 18, 2014 4:51 am

dewelar wrote:"You know~ there's a rumour going around that Hisao and Emi are dating! Hisao denied it, but I don't think Shicchan believed him. Needless to say, she was not happy~ at~ all~! Shizune has warned him to stay away from her, because she thinks being around Emi is dangerous!"
This is completely absurd. Emi's never hurt anybody in her life. Nope nope.

Great chapter. Your Misha is excellent.

User avatar
dewelar
Posts: 1228
Joined: Sun Jul 14, 2013 6:09 pm
Location: The Fifth Thing

Re: Developments, Chapter 34

Post by dewelar » Tue Feb 18, 2014 5:08 am

Leaty wrote:
dewelar wrote:"You know~ there's a rumour going around that Hisao and Emi are dating! Hisao denied it, but I don't think Shicchan believed him. Needless to say, she was not happy~ at~ all~! Shizune has warned him to stay away from her, because she thinks being around Emi is dangerous!"
This is completely absurd. Emi's never hurt anybody in her life. Nope nope.
*laughs*
Great chapter. Your Misha is excellent.
Thanks. She's very difficult to write, and not just from trying to figure out where to put the tildes and tilde-bangs :) .
Rin is orthogonal to everything.
Stuff I've written: Developments, a continuation of Lilly's (bad? neutral?) ending - COMPLETE!

Post Reply