The Manila Tales –A Summer-ish Series Conclusion Update

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King of Beasts
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Re: The Manila Tales –A Summer-ish Series (Updated 6/19)

Post by King of Beasts » Thu Jun 19, 2014 7:55 pm

Sugar levels rising...

*Dies of extreme diabetes*

'Twas a good read. Hope to see more from you!:D

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Hoitash
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Re: The Manila Tales –A Summer-ish Series (Updated 6/19)

Post by Hoitash » Fri Jun 20, 2014 1:06 am

Mirage_GSM wrote:Awww...
You need a warning label for diabetic on this chapter^^
I regret nothing :D

"...Did you have a nightmare?”

“…Yes. How’d you know?”

“Saw your sheet on the floor...”
How old is Refia supposed to be again?
Five. Bear in mind we're talking ADD logic here; she more than likely stumbled over the sheet, saw Soon-hee wasn't in it, saw she wasn't in the bed, shrugged, and moved on.

Okay, Osaka from Azumanga Daioh logic, but same basic principle. Refia herself is a bit of a mix of Renge, Osaka, and Luna Lovegood, so Mork knows what goes on in that head of hers.
I never saw the predator movies, but from what you wrote they don't seem like the kind to go after helpless girls, do they?
Correct. The other girl -Ayano- was gunned down by the gang in their over-excited efforts to kill the Predator, which left both girls completely alone (though ironically it'd be a bit more interested in Soon-hee now.)
griffon8 wrote:
Hoitash wrote:I titled my head but obeyed, just before we pelted forward at an angle that I’m pretty sure should have flipped the car.
Why does her head need a title?
Hoitash wrote:Fortunately the windows were tilted and I still had on my sunglasses.
Does the tilt of the windows really help?
So, where you had ‘titled’ you meant ‘tilted’ and where you had ‘tilted’ you meant ‘tinted’. That's amusing.
It would seem so. Strange.
King of Beasts wrote:Sugar levels rising...
*Dies of extreme diabetes*
'Twas a good read. Hope to see more from you!:D
Good to know my efforts at branching out are paying off :)
"Who are you, that do not know your history?" -Ulysses
Misha Time: United States of Misha Meet the Hakamichis
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Re: The Manila Tales –A Summer-ish Series (Updated 6/19)

Post by Serviam » Fri Jun 20, 2014 5:51 pm

*swearing in Tagalog out of amazement *

This...really takes the cake, holds it like a potato chip, and EATS IT! :D
"What the government is good at is collecting taxes, taking away your freedoms and killing people. It’s not good at much else."
- Tom Clancy summing up l'état in a nutshell

In order of completion:
Lilly > Hanako > Rin > Emi
Currently on: Shizune

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Re: The Manila Tales –A Summer-ish Series (Updated 6/19)

Post by Hoitash » Fri Jun 20, 2014 6:08 pm

Serviam wrote:*swearing in Tagalog out of amazement *

This...really takes the cake, holds it like a potato chip, and EATS IT! :D
Thank you, thank you. You're too kind :)

Sounds like I have a Crowning Moment of Heartwarming entry for the Tvtropes page.

Mmm, cake....
"Who are you, that do not know your history?" -Ulysses
Misha Time: United States of Misha Meet the Hakamichis
Awesome, served on the rocks: Hisao and Kenji- Master Detectives! (Check out the Archive for more!)
I wrote a book! Brythain edited it! If you like mystery and history please consider: A Sister's Habit
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Re: The Manila Tales –A Summer-ish Series (Updated 6/5)

Post by Command13 » Sun Jun 22, 2014 2:15 am

I look forward to every one of your updates, I'm really enjoying this series.


I found a small typo that made me chuckle after looking at it confusedly

Hoitash wrote:“You’re welcome, Hee… oh! Since Uncle Hisao and Aunt Miya think of you as family, that makes you family, so I should be calling you Hee-neesan!”

Pretty sure that was meant to be uncle Kenji, that or Hanako has some explaining to do. :wink:

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Re: The Manila Tales –A Summer-ish Series (Updated 6/19)

Post by Mirage_GSM » Sun Jun 22, 2014 2:35 am

Refia is Hisao's daughter, no?
So I think "Hisao" is correct or it wouldn't make them relatives.
Emi > Misha > Hanako > Lilly > Rin > Shizune

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Re: The Manila Tales –A Summer-ish Series (Updated 6/19)

Post by Hoitash » Sun Jun 22, 2014 9:31 am

Command13 wrote:I look forward to every one of your updates, I'm really enjoying this series.
Thanks for reading, glad you're enjoying it :).
Mirage_GSM wrote:Refia is Hisao's daughter, no?
So I think "Hisao" is correct or it wouldn't make them relatives.
Technically you're both correct. The best kind of correct.

While Refia IS the daughter of Hisao and Hanako Nakai, Soon-hee is the de facto adopted daughter of Kenji and Miya. Kenji is Hisao's brother in all but blood at this point -hence why their children refer to the other's as aunt and uncle. And it's pretty clear that the Nakais think of her as family, too (remember Hisao and Hanako told Soon-hee to refer to them as uncle and aunt, respectively.)

I imagine where things got confusing is because Refia used the honorific for an older sister to refer to someone who is, if we're gonna roll with this father's best friend as uncle theme, the equivalent of a cousin. Refia used the term out of respect for Soon-hee's age (far older than any of her other "cousins") and because she already feels exceptionally close to her (and cheer her up, and make her feel more like part of the family, instead of merely a guest.)

So I have adjusted the sentence in question with both of your angles reflected in it, so it should work out (and yes I deliberately used an and instead of a comma. She may be oddly intuitive, but she's still five.)
"Who are you, that do not know your history?" -Ulysses
Misha Time: United States of Misha Meet the Hakamichis
Awesome, served on the rocks: Hisao and Kenji- Master Detectives! (Check out the Archive for more!)
I wrote a book! Brythain edited it! If you like mystery and history please consider: A Sister's Habit
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Re: The Manila Tales –A Summer-ish Series (Updated 6/19)

Post by Mirage_GSM » Sun Jun 22, 2014 10:21 am

...Refia used the honorific for an older sister to refer to someone who is, if we're gonna roll with this father's best friend as uncle theme, the equivalent of a cousin. Refia used the term out of respect for Soon-hee's age...
Actually, using the honorific "Onee-san" for older girls who are not actually blood-related is pretty common in Japan - at least among small children.
Emi > Misha > Hanako > Lilly > Rin > Shizune

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Re: The Manila Tales –A Summer-ish Series (Updated 6/19)

Post by Hoitash » Sun Jun 22, 2014 10:42 am

Mirage_GSM wrote:
...Refia used the honorific for an older sister to refer to someone who is, if we're gonna roll with this father's best friend as uncle theme, the equivalent of a cousin. Refia used the term out of respect for Soon-hee's age...
Actually, using the honorific "Onee-san" for older girls who are not actually blood-related is pretty common in Japan - at least among small children.
Knew I was forgetting something. Thank you once again :)
"Who are you, that do not know your history?" -Ulysses
Misha Time: United States of Misha Meet the Hakamichis
Awesome, served on the rocks: Hisao and Kenji- Master Detectives! (Check out the Archive for more!)
I wrote a book! Brythain edited it! If you like mystery and history please consider: A Sister's Habit
"You are absolutely insane. And entertaining." -griffon8

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Re: The Manila Tales –A Summer-ish Series (Updated 6/26)

Post by Hoitash » Thu Jun 26, 2014 11:12 am

“It's 106 miles to Chicago, we got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it's dark, and we're wearing sunglasses.”

“Hit it.” –Elwood and Jake, The Blues Brothers

Previous Chapter

Chapter Five: The Biker’s Tale


It had been a while since I had slept in a closet, and when I finally woke up in the morning I had the stiffness to prove it. I was also down one Nakai. The blanket was still there, though, so I figured she had woken up before me and gone back to bed. Although considering I saw daylight seeping through the closet door, she might’ve left with one of the adults.

Using my toes to open the closet door, I hefted myself up with a light grunt, using some simple stretches to loosen my stiff muscles and joints. When I stepped out of the closet I was nearly blinded by the sunlight poring through the open window drapes.

I covered my eyes with my arm and tried to blink away the spots that had formed, “Ugh, what time is it?”

“Nine-thirty,” Mrs. Nakai’s voice replied.

I jumped and turned toward the den, about the only spot in the main room where I could see with my light-dazzled eyes. Mrs. Nakai was sitting in a corner, a book in her hands as she smiled and looked up at me.

“Good morning,” she said.

“Mornin’… Sorry, good morning,” my eyes finally adjusted to the brightness, I carefully looked around the empty suite before asking, “Where’s Refia?”

“Everyone else went on a battlefield tour for the day,” Mrs. Nakai replied, “Refia said you had had a rough night, and we thought looking at old war sites might not be your cup of tea, so we decided to let you sleep.”

“Thank you. Sorry you had to stay behind.”

“It’s fine –battlefields aren’t my cup of tea, either. Besides, I had other plans for today.”

I thanked her again for her consideration before heading to the bathroom and getting ready for the pool. The resort had towels at the pool and prohibited using ones from the room, so to cover myself up I used my school jacket and pants.

The indoor pool opened earlier than the outdoor pool because it was built for laps, not playing around. The resort itself was eerily quiet as I headed down, and when I reached the pool after grabbing a towel, the only other occupant was an elderly woman looking after two young kids in the wading pool. She smiled and nodded at me and I returned the gesture.

There wasn’t a lifeguard on duty that early, but they had security cameras, at least. After working through my stretches I headed into the pool and did my laps, everything but the repetition of breaths and strokes fading away as the water surrounded me, bathing me in its cool grip as it numbed my senses. Since I didn’t have a workout partner and hadn’t had a chance to swim the day before, I pushed myself a bit harder than normal, and I had to remind myself I could still do my basic aerobic exercises in the suite so I wouldn’t completely wear myself out.

Even so, I finished my laps breathless, but also more relaxed than I had felt in days. That was why I loved to swim; when you’re in the water you’re so focused on it and your routine everything else goes blank. It even helps you, blocking out everything around you except the water itself. It’s just you and the water, working together.

I never quite got the same feeling with my training, probably because it usually involved a partner and more focus. Swimming was swimming, and there was nothing else like it.

After wading around a bit to cool down, I hefted myself out of the pool, dried myself off, slipped back into my jacket and pants, and headed back to the room, tossing the towel in the basket on the way out.

Since I had swam a bit –okay, a lot- more than normal, I took my time in the shower to help ease my muscles, and when I left the bathroom I was quickly accosted by the enticing aroma of food. Sniffing loudly, I pivoted toward the source of the scent. In the area that served as a dining room was a plate across and to the left of which –facing the now mostly draped windows- Mrs. Nakai was sitting.

Mrs. Nakai turned to me, smirking lightly at my probably comical impersonation of a starving hyena, “You missed breakfast, so I heated some leftover miso soup and made you some eggs. And one of Miya’s muffins –we need to eat them before they dry out.”

“Sorry for missing breakfast,” I said, “Thank you for making something for me.”

Mrs. Nakai smiled and gestured to the plate, and I charged forward and started eating. The eggs were scrambled, the muffin was banana-nut, and I was honestly so hungry I didn’t care what it was. While I did my best to eat as fast as possible in a dignified fashion that didn’t aggravate my stomach, I finally noticed that Mrs. Nakai had her leather jacket draped over her shoulders and her helmet in her lap. She was also sipping tea and picking at a chocolate chip muffin.

When I had paused from demolishing my food to breathe, Mrs. Nakai looked up from her tea and asked, “I was going to ride around town for a while, visit a few shops I’ve found over the years. Would you like to come along?”

I tore through the remains of my muffin while I considered her offer. It’d be a good bonding experience, give me a better understanding of the city, maybe find a bookstore with cool old books, and possibly a great place to grab lunch. Besides, I didn’t have anything better to do besides play hermit, and I could do that at Yamaku.

“Thank you, I’d like that,” I replied.

Mrs. Nakai smiled and sipped her tea, “We’ll leave when you’re ready, then. You can borrow Akio’s jacket and helmet until we can get you one –there’s a shop in the city we can visit along the way for that.”

“…Huh?”

I should have known what she had meant, but still, riding around the city wasn’t vomit-inducing enough, I was going to do it on the back of a motorcycle. It would have been impolite to reject her offer at that point, though, and part of me was curious what riding around Manila would be like with Mrs. Nakai.

So, for better or for a worse, a little while later I was wearing Akio’s jacket –which was vinyl, not leather- and helmet, standing in the resort’s parking structure and trying my best to repress a nervous gulp. On the bright side, the helmet and jacket fit pretty well. While I stood there trying to keep from getting more nervous, Mrs. Nakai fussed and fiddled around the bike for a bit, giving me a chance to look it over in more detail.

I didn’t know anything about motorcycles, but I could tell Mrs. Nakai’s bike was built for speed, agility, and distance. It had the slender frame for fast movements, the sturdy structure of something meant to be used for long stretches of time without rest, and an engine that was just this side of non-compensatory. The exposed metal looked old but durable, just like the matte green paintjob, giving the bike a serious vintage look. I would’ve been very surprised if any of the major parts were younger than Mrs. Nakai herself, let along me.

The uniqueness of the bike had piqued my curiosity, so I asked who the manufacturer was. Having finished her examination, Mrs. Nakai turned to me and grinned.

“Custom chopper,” she replied, “Don’t worry; I’ve driven this baby over most of Hokkaido without any problems.”

Her statement reassured me a bit, so as she flipped her visor down and saddled up on her bike, I followed her slightly less reserved than I had before. Slightly.

“Hold on around the lower part of my chest,” Mrs. Nakai instructed, “Not too tight, please. Try and move with my movements, lean forward a bit, don’t make any sudden shifts in your position, don’t freak out, and don’t let go. Oh, and you might wanna close your eyes.”

“…Is that safe?” I asked.

“Safer than you panicking,” she replied.

I carefully leaned forward and wrapped my arms under Mrs. Nakai’s armpits, using my hands to keep them locked in place. Suppressing a nervous gulp, I closed me eyes.

“Good job,” Mrs. Nakai declared.

The next thing I heard was her starting the engine, which loudly roared to life and echoed out across the structure. After a few moments it settled into a more muted, growling rumble that still echoed, but not as bad.

“Ready?” Mrs. Nakai shouted over the engine’s rumbling.

I gulped and nodded despite the pointlessness of the gesture, “As I’ll ever be.”

Mrs. Nakai chuckled and said, “Don’t worry, you’ll be fine. Chairperson Williams always enjoys her rides, once she stops screaming.”

Before I could groan that that didn’t help, we were off.

Once again, as much as I would like to recount my travels through the city of Manila, all I can say is there was a lot of honking horns, ringing bicycle bells, and shouting people in multiple languages. The only reason I didn’t throw up was because I didn’t want to ruin Akio’s helmet. On the bright side, it meant I had to keep my mouth shut so I couldn’t scream, either.

Mrs. Nakai seemed to know what she was doing, as I felt the motorcycle dodge and weave through traffic, her driving as seemingly suicidal as the locals. More than once someone would honk and scream at her. She never bothered to snap back, however, just weaving and darting through and with traffic. I did my best to keep up with her shifts and leans with my eyes closed, and though it was hard to get the hang of it, I eventually managed to help keep us from crashing.

How long we were riding I’m not sure, and I was too busy being terrified for my life to ask. Even if Mrs. Nakai knew what she was doing, I still had to worry about every other insane driver out there –which in that blasted city seemed to be all of them.

Eventually, finally, mercifully, I felt the motorcycle slow down, and, a little later, stop. Once we weren’t moving anymore, the engine quieting down to a satisfied mewl before going silent.

“You okay?” Mrs. Nakai asked.

“Not sure,” I grunted, hopping off the bike and tearing off my helmet.

Placing my hands on my knees and going through a quick breathing exercise helped calm me down, and my stomach seemed less upset then I thought. When I was sure I wasn’t going to throw up, I opened my eyes and stood up straight. A large building across the street provided some shade, so I wasn’t immediately blinded, and I could see that we had parked in a bicycle rack near an ancient, rickety wooden building. It was a single story and rectangular, and looked like one good wind would topple the whole mess over.

I inhaled and exhaled deeply a few times to make sure I was okay. When I was sure I wasn’t actually going to throw up, I turned to Mrs. Nakai, who was securing her bike with a chain she must have produced from one of the motorcycle’s side pouches. When she was done, she took off her helmet and shook her head to settle her ponytail.

Turning to me and smiling lightly, she asked again if I was okay.

I nodded, “Yes. Sorry for overreacting.”

“You wouldn’t be the first to lose their latest meal after going for a ride with me. Speaking of, would you like some lunch? I’m buying.”

At first the question seemed a bit premature, but then my stomach grumbled a bit, so I checked my watch. Then I checked it again to make sure it was still working. Apparently we had been driving around for a while. Remembering what Mr. Nakai had said about scenic routes, I smiled and nodded.

Taking off her jacket and slinging it over one shoulder, Mrs. Nakai walked over to the front of the rectangular building. I followed and folded my jacket over my arm. As we headed for the front I noticed the writing carved onto a board nailed above the simple front door. It was written in Filipino, English, and Spanish, and declared the place simply as “Zeke’s.”

Mrs. Nakai glanced to the side of the door and pointed, “See that crack?”

I followed her finger to a large indent in one of the planks. It looked like it had been there a while, and the height seemed just about right for a motorcycle’s front fender.

“You crashed?” I guessed.

“I parked more aggressively then I intended,” Mrs. Nakai replied, “it’s how I found this place. It was our first time in Manila, and I had brought a Harley –I figured a big loud engine might help me cope with traffic. Well it worked, sort of, but I made a hard turn around the building behind us and couldn’t quite break fast enough.”

“Were you hurt?”

“No, just really rattled. Hitting a building can do that to you.”

“Noted.”

Mrs. Nakai smirked, opened the door, and strode in. Taking a deep breath, I followed her into the aging wooden building, trusting in Mrs. Nakai’s experience and the knowledge that I was trained in martial bar fighting.

The building was dark, with only a few ancient ceiling lamps attached to lazily turning fans in the ceiling providing light. There were two windows near the back, but they had blackout drapes over them. Someone had cut slits near the top of the roof to help air circulate. There was no air conditioning, but it was still cooler than outside. I had to pause in the threshold to adjust to the dim lighting, which of course gave everyone inside a chance to appraise the newcomer.
Last edited by Hoitash on Thu Jun 26, 2014 11:15 am, edited 1 time in total.
"Who are you, that do not know your history?" -Ulysses
Misha Time: United States of Misha Meet the Hakamichis
Awesome, served on the rocks: Hisao and Kenji- Master Detectives! (Check out the Archive for more!)
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Re: The Manila Tales –A Summer-ish Series (Updated 6/26)

Post by Hoitash » Thu Jun 26, 2014 11:13 am

Part II:

When I could focus, I stepped inside and glanced around. Mrs. Nakai was waiting for me a pace past the door. The building was pretty small, and there were maybe a dozen round tables strewn around the place, and since it was still relatively early for lunch, only a few of them were occupied. At the back wall was a counter, behind which was a diner style cooking range, and a door that probably led to the back storage. The counter was wood that matched the stools, though the top of the counter had been covered with what looked like gray stone.

The only person sitting there was a man on the far left of the counter. Despite the drapes, both windows were open, their lazy fluttering mixing with the lazy breeze the ancient, creaking fans to create something approaching a light breeze. Even though it was cooler in the building, it was still pretty humid, and I was still sweating. Besides the man at the counter there were only a couple more patrons scattered around, while a young man with an apron darted around pouring refills of drinks. Except for a man in a gray suit in a corner with a newspaper, everyone else looked to be a local.

As we stood there, everyone’s eyes were on us, and I repressed the urge to take a step back. The man in the gray suit went back to his paper, and after a moment most of the patrons went back to minding their own business. A few were still looking at Mrs. Nakai, or more likely her scars.

Mrs. Nakai ignored them, strode over to the counter, and stood next to one of the stools. I scuttled after her as she grinned at the large, swarthy, older man behind the counter and asked, “Hey, Zeke, you remember me?”

The large man beamed, “Nakai, it is you! I told you, Rich, I told you! Rich?”

The large man darted around, clearly looking for something. Looking down at the oven, he rolled his eyes and grabbed something, or rather someone, by their apron strings. Hefting the person up, he whirled them around to reveal a thinner, younger looking version of the larger man with hair that was more brown than black. I say younger, but the thinner man looked to be in his thirties or forties, while the larger man was easily nearing his seventies, and most of his hair was either gone or white.

“See, told you it was her!” the older man called, “As if I could forget her after that entrance she made!”

“Yeah, Dad, I see,” the younger man said. He smiled to both of us and said, “Welcome to Zeke’s, have a seat, and my Dad’ll be with you in a sec.”

I was so engrossed in the scene before me that it actually took me a second to realize they were all speaking Japanese. It was rough and had a distinct accent to it, but it was Japanese. The man at the end of the counter grumbled and drank from the large, nearly empty glass in front of him. He had a long, sharp scar on his right cheek and was missing the ring finger and pinky on his left hand. Judging by his aged, grizzled appearance, it wasn’t too hard to suppose why he kept giving Mrs. Nakai dirty looks.

Not that she noticed. Mrs. Nakai grabbed a seat at the counter and placed her helmet next to her, placing her jacket carefully in her lap as she said, “Thanks, Rich. It’s good to be back.”

“Been a year or so, hasn’t it?” the larger man said. He glanced at me as I took my seat next to Mrs. Nakai, my feet dangling off the floor. Raising a speculative eyebrow at me, he turned to Mrs. Nakai and asked, “Who’s your friend?”

“New addition to the family,” she replied. Turning to me, she smiled and said, “Soon-hee, this is Ezekiel, his son Richard, and…” Mrs. Nakai looked around the building until she noticed the young man wandering around in an apron, whom she pointed to and said, “His grandson, Lorenzo. They run this place.”

“Ever since my Dad went toes up, at least,” Ezekiel stated, “and please, call me Zeke,” Ezekiel added, giving a theatric Western-style bow to me and declaring, “Welcome to my humble little diner. What can I get you two lovely young ladies to drink?”

“You still make your own beer, right?” Mrs. Nakai asked.

Zeke nodded, “One house ale, nice and cold, coming up.”

“Thanks,” Mrs. Nakai said.

Zeke turned to me, “And for you?”

I glanced up at the large chalkboard that had the menu scribbled on it. It was a scrawling mess of Filipino, English, and Spanish, so I gave up and just asked for some calamansi juice.

Zeke nodded and repeated the order to Rich, who opened the nearby back door and shouted into it. When the door was closed Zeke grinned at me and asked, “She tell you how she nearly crashed through the diner?”

“Into, not through,” Mrs. Nakai corrected, “and yes, I did.”

Zeke rolled his eyes, “Through, into same thing. And you ask how I could forget you? Heck, if you had been goin’ faster I coulda used the insurance money to buy new fans!”

I heard someone behind us snort in amusement. Sounded like it came from the foreigner.

Zeke snorted back and continued, “Anyway, ever since then she’s made it a point to come by whenever she visits Manila, which has been… five years, six?”

“Seven,” Rich replied as he placed two glasses in front of us.

“Right, right,” Zeke said, “I’ll give you two a minute to decide on what you want.”

Zeke wandered off, and I sipped my juice and glanced at Mrs. Nakai. She caught my eye from over her beer, smirked, and lowered her glass.

“Question?” she asked.

“Um, if you don’t mind my asking… why here?”

Mrs. Nakai smiled and looked up at the menu, “Well, after I hit the wall, I came inside to apologize. Zeke looked like he was in charge, so I came to the counter and started babbling. He obviously knows Japanese-”

“Really?” Zeke interjected from the grill, “I thought I was speaking Arabic this whole time.”

Mrs. Nakai smirked, rolled her eyes, and continued, “Anyway, I was talking too fast for him, so to calm me down he plopped a beer and some fried noodles in front of me. I’ve been coming back ever since, usually with someone else.”

“Never claimed to be a French chef,” Zeke stated, “Good food, good beer, good prices, and shade from the sun. That’s what I got, so that’s what I do.”

Mrs. Nakai nodded, “And you do it well,” turning to me, she asked, “So any idea what you want for lunch?”

“Not sure. I uh, can’t read the menu.”

“My hands ain’t as steady as they used to be,” Zeke stated.

“Told you to let me write it,” Rich muttered.

Mrs. Nakai chuckled at the two before glancing up at the menu. After a few moments contemplation, she said, “I’ve always liked the fried bananas, as odd as that may sound.”

“The pan-fried bangus is pretty good,” Rich added while he handed Lorenzo a fresh pitcher of water, “you’d call it milkfish, and it’s deboned and served on a bed of rice.”

“Feel free to get both, if you want,” Mrs. Nakai stated.

I smiled and said, “Thanks, I’ll do that.”

Turning to Zeke, Mrs. Nakai stated, “I’ll have the tofu teriyaki on rice.”

Zeke nodded and went to work, assisted along the way by his son. Something Mrs. Nakai had said earlier had stuck with me, so I glanced at her and asked in a low voice, “Did you mean that? About me being part of the family?”

Mrs. Nakai smiled and nodded, “I’ve never seen Kenji so passionate or devoted to anything as much as your recovery and wellbeing, and Miya dotes on you just like she does with Satomi and Refia. Oh, that reminds me –thank you for looking after her last night.”

“Sorry for not taking her back to bed, but I figured she’d just fidget and wake up Satomi.”

“You figured right,” Mrs. Nakai said, “She said she had fun playing with you and that you kept her safe all night.”

“Honestly, I think she kept me safe,” I muttered.

Mrs. Nakai raised an eyebrow, but didn’t say anything. It still felt a bit weird, but I was starting to get used to the idea of having a family again.

We sipped at our drinks quietly for a while, while the older man at the end of the counter started grumbling at Richard and Zeke. Richard spoke to the man, who waved his empty glass around. Zeke glared at the man and he put his glass down, stood up from the stool, and slowly shuffled out of the diner, grumbling the entire time.

Our food arrived pretty quickly, and was just as good as everyone had implied it would be. While we ate Zeke and Mrs. Nakai exchanged idle chatter –how was Zeke’s granddaughter? How were the blonde’s kids doing? Had the crazy blind guy finally snapped? How was Lorenzo doing in school? How was Mr. Nakai?

Stuff like that. When we had cleaned our plates Richard took them and asked if we’d like anything else.

“Some halo-halo would be nice,” Mrs. Nakai stated.

“Can you do orange flavor for the ice?” I asked, once again glad I had done my research.

Zeke grinned and nodded, and Mrs. Nakai and I split the mix of shaved ice, fruit, and other things that probably had no business being mixed together. Since I wasn’t hungry enough to not care what I was eating and had someone to share with, I could pick around the parts I didn’t like. When we were almost done Mrs. Nakai’s cellphone started vibrating, so she pulled it out. After a few button clicks she started typing out a text response, and a little while later she stuck her phone back in her pocket.

“Miya,” Mrs. Nakai explained, “She just wanted to update me where they were and to remind me where we were meeting for dinner. Do you like pizza?”

“Hard not to when you spend a lot of time with Kenji,” I replied, “Where else did you have planned for us to go?”

Mrs. Nakai smirked and sipped the water she had asked for earlier, “Here and there. We need to get you a helmet and jacket, and I know a good bookstore that carries a lot of older books.”

“You headin’ out?” Zeke asked, placing the bill in front of Mrs. Nakai.

“Yeah, I need to show the Little Lamb here around the city,” she replied.

Mrs. Nakai paid and hopped off her stool, and I did the same, thanking both Zeke and Richard for the food, and Mrs. Nakai for paying.

“Glad you enjoyed it!” Zeke replied, “Good luck out there, and try not to faint!”

Mrs. Nakai chuckled, though considering her long sleeves and missing sweat glands, it was a real concern for her. Giving Lorenzo a friendly wave as we passed by, we stepped outside into the heat, humidity, and noise of the city. It wasn’t until we were outside and Mrs. Nakai was inspecting her motorcycle that I realized I was about to ride the thing again. After eating. Again.

Mrs. Nakai must’ve sensed my apprehension, because while she was removing the chain she said, “I know a few back-roads around here that have less traffic, so I won’t have to drive as… aggressively as I normally do for a while. We can still wait if you don’t feel up for it, though.”

I reflexively shook my head, “I’m fine.”

Mrs. Nakai raised an eyebrow, “You sure?”

“I’m… maybe a few minutes more? Please? The shaved ice isn’t settling right.”

Mrs. Nakai smiled and nodded, “Of course.”

So I still had a submissive streak. I was working on it. I leaned back against the wall of the diner and closed my eyes, waiting for the shaved ice to settle. After a few minutes, I felt like I stood a reasonable chance of not throwing up, so I donned the jacket and helmet and told Mrs. Nakai I was ready. She tucked her ponytail under her helmet, threw on her jacket, and mounted up. I hopped on behind her, closed my eyes and mouth, and held on for dear life.

“Ready?” she asked.

“As I’ll ever be.”

“Here we go, then.”

Mrs. Nakai started the engine, backed us out of the rack, and then we were off.

+++
Next Chapter

Insert preferred road trip music of your choice here. I’m gonna go get noodles. And maybe some duck. Or a pizza….
Last edited by Hoitash on Thu Jul 03, 2014 10:48 am, edited 2 times in total.
"Who are you, that do not know your history?" -Ulysses
Misha Time: United States of Misha Meet the Hakamichis
Awesome, served on the rocks: Hisao and Kenji- Master Detectives! (Check out the Archive for more!)
I wrote a book! Brythain edited it! If you like mystery and history please consider: A Sister's Habit
"You are absolutely insane. And entertaining." -griffon8

King of Beasts
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Re: The Manila Tales –A Summer-ish Series (Updated 6/26)

Post by King of Beasts » Fri Jun 27, 2014 12:26 am

Looks like I'm first to reply, then.

It's nice to see Hanako not stuttering and rather confident with herself. Then again, I suppose lots of years worth of character development and being married to Hisao would to that to her.

I'm sure other people have said this, but I found that looking at Hisao and Kenji's little family through an observer's eyes brings a fresh perspective to the tale. For that I applaud you for this newest chapter and the overall story.:D

Unrelated note: Too bad Hanako never got involved in Hisao and Kenji's misadventures. I imagine a scene where the couple are in a Back-to-Back badass pose surrounded by Illuminati mooks, armed to the teeth and bantering ala Mr. and Mrs. Smith.

Okay, I'm done rambling now.:D

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Hoitash
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Re: The Manila Tales –A Summer-ish Series (Updated 6/26)

Post by Hoitash » Fri Jun 27, 2014 9:43 am

King of Beasts wrote: I'm sure other people have said this, but I found that looking at Hisao and Kenji's little family through an observer's eyes brings a fresh perspective to the tale. For that I applaud you for this newest chapter and the overall story.:D
Thanks :)

Coming from a different perspective is one of the inherent challenges with this story, and so far I seem to be pulling it off.
Unrelated note: Too bad Hanako never got involved in Hisao and Kenji's misadventures. I imagine a scene where the couple are in a Back-to-Back badass pose surrounded by Illuminati mooks, armed to the teeth and bantering ala Mr. and Mrs. Smith.
That might be a bit... too much for Hanako.
"Who are you, that do not know your history?" -Ulysses
Misha Time: United States of Misha Meet the Hakamichis
Awesome, served on the rocks: Hisao and Kenji- Master Detectives! (Check out the Archive for more!)
I wrote a book! Brythain edited it! If you like mystery and history please consider: A Sister's Habit
"You are absolutely insane. And entertaining." -griffon8

King of Beasts
Posts: 7
Joined: Fri Jun 13, 2014 2:58 am

Re: The Manila Tales –A Summer-ish Series (Updated 6/26)

Post by King of Beasts » Sat Jun 28, 2014 9:36 am

Hoitash wrote:
That might be a bit... too much for Hanako.
In retrospect, yeah that's definitely too much for everyone's favorite wallflower. It's nice to dream, though.xD

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Re: The Manila Tales –A Summer-ish Series (Updated 6/26)

Post by SpcPotshot » Sun Jun 29, 2014 12:03 pm

Hoitash wrote:
Insert preferred road trip music of your choice here. I’m gonna go get noodles. And maybe some duck. Or a pizza….
Or maybe duck pizza?

I've had duck tacos at this place in Bismarck. Pretty good, if a bit pricey.

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