Akita's Seasons

Akita's Seasons

0 INK

Four odd teenagers arrive in town, stirring summer vacation up for for normal teenagers. Will the Star Guardians be able to control the teenagers - the Seasons?

5,399 readers have visited Akita's Seasons since Kura Ravengade created it.

Copyright: The creator of this roleplay has attributed some or all of its content to the following sources:

i do not have a link, but it's based off of a previous roleplay that i've participated in.

Introduction



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Once upon a time ... Thousands of millions of years ago ... There were two beings known as the sun and the moon. The two met and fell in love instantly, despite their obvious differences. The being we call the Sun created the Earth for a home for him and his new, lovely bride. He noticed his wife's nature for caring for things and, since he wasn't sure of how she would react to a child, he made animals and humans to live on Earth so that Sun would warm them up and Moon would check on them almost every night to make sure they were safe. This ended in the creation of a perfect harmony on Earth.

After many years, Moon gave birth to four children, each different from the last. Two were named after their father for their warm nature; they were called Spring and Summer. The remaining two were named from their mother on how he would use his cold nature to survey the land; they were named Autumn and Winter. The four never left the sides of their parents, leading them to believe that they were the only beings in the universe.

The children began to grow restless, so their parents gave each a fourth of the planet that they looked after as a family. Each crafted it into their own design and the humans began to adjust to the changes in their section as the Earth was slowly turned by their parents so as not to have the humans suffer in one place for an extension of time. The seasons were happy, but would often attempt to get too near to the planet due to their curiosity, leading Sun and Moon to create the Stars. The Stars were the guardians of the people on Earth and, more specifically, the four children, and their main priority was to keep them safe and away from Earth.

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A small town called Akita has just finished their school year and the students are sent into their three months of vacation. All of them are excited for the vacation - but something very strange is happening in the small town. It has been separated into four sections, each divided my a miniature season. It's almost as if it was that time of year within that section. Four odd teenagers have arrived and are living in a house that they have rented out for three months, but they are only seen together on rare occasion. Some are led to believe that they are evil beings, while others think they're simply strange and want to get to know them. A select few have even said they are falling in love with the four ...

Now what is actually happening. The seasons decided that they wanted to see the world up close and personal, leading them to decide to secretly escape to Earth. They made it there easily, but found that their seasons had followed them to the small town they had picked. Each decided that they would divide up the land as best as possible and would go there if they needed a bit of seclusion. They all picked a fake name, and then decided on Orako as a last name so that they would all have a cover-name for the duration of their stay on Earth.

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Each of the Seasons controls a certain element. Take your pick of the different abilities that join with their element, and please put them in your character's skelly. This only applies to those who will control a Season.

Pet
Feline
Rodent
Bird
Canine


Enhancement
Increased Sight
Increased Smell
International Languages
Interspecies communication


Music Type
Percussion
Wind
Strings
Vocals


Element
Air
Earth
Fire
Water


People who are compatible to your character
Confident People
Aggressive People
Quiet people
Sweet people


Image
Name
Age | Gender | Romantic Interest | Attraction | Face Claim
Element | Pet | Enhancement | Music
Status/Player

*Note: All characters with an asterisk (*) beside their Face Claim are up for negotiation on their given Face Claim.
*Second Note: All Characters with an asterisk (*) beside their Role Name (I.e. Spring, Summer, etc.) are required in order to begin the RP.


Spring*
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Kazumi Orako
Appears 17 | Female | Yuji Kentarou | Confident People | Inori Yuzuriha
Earth | Canine | Interspecies Communication | Percussion
Portrayed by Zodia195

Summer*
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Natsuo Orako
Appears 20 | Male | Azusa Yamanouchi | Aggressive People | Kuroh from K*
Air | Bird | Increased Sight | Wind
Portrayed by Zodia195

Autumn*
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Velonix Orako
Claims to be 18; Appears 16 | Female | Takeo Tachibana | Quiet People | Natsume Asako
Fire | Feline | International Languages | Vocals
Portrayed by Kura Ravengade

Winter*
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[url][/url]
Claims to be 16; Appears 16 | Male |Reiya Himura | Sweet People | Shiro from K*
Water | Rodent | Increased Smell | Strings
Portrayed by CutUp

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Name | Age | Gender | Romantic Interest | Face Claim

Popular and Confident Character/Role 1*
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[url][/url]
19 | Male | Kazumi Orako | Haru Yoshida*
Portrayed by Belshazzar

Sarcastic and Aggressive Character/Role 2*
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Azusa Yamanouchi
17 | Female | Natsuo Orako | Miyuki Shiba
Portrayed by Nekohina

Dark and Quiet Character/Role 3*
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Takeo Tachibana
17 | Male | Velonix Orako | Yata Misaki
Portrayed by CutUp

Shy and Sweet Character/Role 4*
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Reiya Himura
17 | Female | Ryou Orako | Mirai Kuriyama
Portrayed by Kura Ravengade

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Name
Appeared Age | Gender | Face Claim
Abilities
Status/Player

Senior/Merciless Star
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Astra Blackwell
21-25 | Female | C.C. from Code Geass
Memory Suppression, Empathy, Sonic Blast, Time Manipulation, Super Learning, Telekinesis
Portrayed by Belshazzar

Junior/Merciful Star
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Nixon Sparks
21 | Male | Rin Matsuoka
Astral Projection, Psychometry, Dream Control, Persuasion, Telepathy, Element Spirit
Portrayed by Kura Ravengade

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Code: Select all
[center][img]Character name - use Fontmeme.com or bannermaker.com please.[/img]
[img]Image/Gif[/img]
[font=font here][color=color here][size=150]"Quote from character."[/size][/color]
[url=]Theme Song Here[/url]

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[img]Image/Gif[/img]

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[b]| Full Name |[/b]


[b]| Season |[/b]
{Only if playing a season}

[b]| Role |[/b]
{Only if playing a towns-person or a star}

[b]| Nicknames and Aliases |[/b]


[b]| Gender |[/b]


[b]| Age |[/b]
{NOTE: All seasons are the same age, despite their different birthdays. However, for this particular spot, please put the age that your character appears to be.}

[b]| Birthday |[/b]
{NOTE: If playing a season, each season was born in a month of their season}

[b]| Sexual Orientation |[/b]


[b]| Scent |[/b]


[b]| Accent |[/b]


[b]| Nationality |[/b]


[b]| Romantic Interest |[/b]


[b]| Ethnicity |[/b]
{NOTE: If playing a season, what race of people do they appear to be?}

[b]| Social Class |[/b]


[b]| Occupation |[/b]


[b]| Place of Residence |[/b]


[b]| Oddities |[/b]


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[img]Image/Gif[/img]

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[b]| Hair Color |[/b]


[b]| Hair Style |[/b]


[b]| Hair Length |[/b]


[b]| Skin Tone |[/b]


[b]| Complexion |[/b]


[b]| Eye Color |[/b]


[b]| Height [/b]


[b]| Weight |[/b]


[b]| Body Type |[/b]


[b]| Build |[/b]


[b]| Tattoos |[/b]


[b]| Piercings |[/b]


[b]| Birthmarks/Scars |[/b]


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[img]Image/Gif[/img]

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{[b]NOTE: This section is for a Season Character's Usage ONLY.[/b]}

[b]| Season |[/b]


[b]| Pet |[/b]


[b]| Enhancement |[/b]


[b]| Music Type |[/b]


[b]| Compatible People |[/b]


[b]| Abilities Gifted by the Season |[/b]


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[img]Image/Gif[/img]

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[b]| Personality |[/b]


[b]| Morals |[/b]


[b]| Likes |[/b]


[b]| Dislikes |[/b]


[b]| Talents |[/b]


[b]| Flaws |[/b]


[b]| Weaknesses |[/b]


[b]| Hobbies |[/b]


[hr][/hr]

[img]Image/Gif[/img]

[hr][/hr]

[b]| History |[/b]


[b]| Other |[/b][/color][/font]


[b]| Face Claim |[/b]
[/center]

Toggle Rules

1.) Absolutely no God-Modding
2.) Swearing is fine, but ONLY within RP posts.
3.) Reservations will last for 72 hours, at which point I will PM the person that had originally reserved that position. If there is no reply, I will automatically reopen the position. If an extension is requested, I will give the person another 24 hours. At that point, I will reopen the position without a second thought. Please place your favorite physical trait in a person at the bottom of your request as your first password, so that I know you have read the rules.
4.) If you have any questions, take them to the Questions and Answers Forum.
5.) All reservations will be taken in the Seasons on Earth forum. First come, first served. I do, however, reserve the right to deny a requested reservation, whether I have RP'd with you in the past, or if I have done some investigation in how you RP and do not find you suitable to join this RP. In order to reserve a character, make sure to put your favorite personality trait in a person at the bottom of your request as the second password, so that I know you have read the rules.
6.) At least three to four paragraphs per post. Make sure to leave enough for the person included in the post to go off of.
7.) If any problems arise, take it up with me or a GM (if I assign any)
8.) Rules may change, so keep an eye out. I will announce if I add or change any rules, so it shouldn't be too much of a problem.
9.) CS Outline may change, and I will post in the Seasons on Earth forum if it does.
10.) This is a LITERATE and ADULT roleplay. If you cannot handle R rated scenes, do not join. If you cannot handle posting in length with each post, please do not join.

Use the follow formats to request a character:
Towns People/Stars
Code: Select all
May I request [b]Insert Role Name Here[/b] with face claim [b]Insert Face Claim Here[/b]?

[img]Gif of Face Claim Here[/img]

[b]Insert Password 1 Here[/b]
[b]Insert Password 2 Here[/b]

Seasons
Code: Select all
May I request [b]Insert Season Here[/b] with face claim [b]Insert Face Claim Here[/b], with [b]Insert Enhancement Here[/b], [b]Insert Pet Here[/b], [b]Insert Music Here[/b], and [b]Insert Relation Here[/b]?

[img]Gif of Face Claim Here[/img]

[b]Insert Password 1 Here[/b]
[b]Insert Password 2 Here[/b]

The Story So Far... Write a Post » as written by 5 authors

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Reiya Himura Character Portrait: Ryou Orako 2

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#, as written by CutUp
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Ryou's eyes slowly opened as rays of sunlight hit his face. He stretched his arms out as he sat up in his bed. As he got out of bed he made his way over to Yuo's 'castle', a large cardboard structure that took up most of a coffee table that it sat on. Next to it was a plastic exercise wheel, and a wide variety of various toys, and tunnels for her to play with. She was rather spoiled. He peeked into the top of her castle, where her nest of tissues, straw, and pillow stuffing was hidden. She was inside, still resting.

A small smile crossed his face as he watched her sleep. He didn't get much rest during the night, getting up and down to check on her, worrying himself to death over her. Despite her protests that she was fine, he just couldn't help it. He looked over at his refrigerator, internally debating whether he should go ahead and fix himself some breakfast, or wait until he meets up with his siblings. He was sure Harmonix had breakfast already prepared for him, and the others. He finally shrugged his shoulders, well it would be rude not to eat whatever it was Harmonix most likely cooked for him.

"Yuo, time to wake up. Let's go to the others for some breakfast." Ryou called out after he threw on his clothes. The white mouse slowly peeked her head out of the top of her castle, almost glaring at him for waking her up. ~Ugh, why do I have to go? I'm tired. Far too tired to deal with those disgusting felines of your sister, and those despicable feathered fiends of your brother!~ "Come now! They've never once harmed you! Besides, I'm not leaving you alone while you're still recovering. And that's that."

~Hmm, look at you being all assertive. How unlike you. Very well, but know that I do so under protest.~

Ryou grabbed an empty box, and placed a pillow inside to carry Yuo. While normally he would simply carry her around in his pocket, but with her injuries he was afraid that it would be too uncomfortable for her. As he prepared it for her a familiar scent crossed his nostrils. 'Vanilla? Where have I smelled this before?' He looked out of his window, and saw the most peculiar of sights, Miss Himura curled up on the ground. And was she crying?

Ryou put down the box, and went outside, slowly approaching her. “I-I can’t … I can’t believe that a-a God exists … That is malevolent enough t-to steal the only people that have ever m-mattered to me!” she cried, her fingers curling into fists. “I’ve done nothing … But try t-to be a good person … And this … This is how the universe treats me in return …” Shaking her head, she let out a dry laugh that was completely devoid of any and all humor. “It must be some sort of sick, cruel joke,” she ended on a whisper, once more dropping her forehead to her knees, fresh tears leaking out of her eyes.

“Just a sick, cruel joke … Jokes on me, I guess … Hah … I-It’s so funny, too …” "I don't think it's funny at all." He said as he approached her. "I...I too know what it's like to lose someone you care about. To lose someone that makes you feel like you belong." He said, while he may have gotten Harmonix back, it still doesn't replace the pain that he felt when she left. "I may not know you very well, nor what it is that pains you so, and it may not be my place to say, but it will get better. It may not seem like it now, but pain is temporary. It always hurts before it gets better, that is how you heal is it not?"

"It's easy to think of pain and hurt as something bad, and that shouldn't exist, but where would mankind be without pain?" He looked up at the sky, watching as the snow began to float down to the ground. "Think of all the art, music, and literature that wouldn't even exist without it. And how could you appreciate joy without experiencing sorrow? When bad things happen people are so quick to forget the beauty in the world, and yet focus on the bad, but I think both are needed to make it complete."

Ryou looked down at Reiya, and extended his hand to help her up. "Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional. You should get off the ground, you may catch a cold." He said with a large smile on his face. "This is my home, would you like to come inside for something to eat or drink Miss Himura?"

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Velonix Orako Character Portrait: Aurora Orako Character Portrait: Reiya Himura Character Portrait: Natsuo Orako Character Portrait: Ryou Orako 2

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”One day or day one. You decide.”



Velonix felt tears well up in her large eyes as her sister placed the pretty flowers around her neck. Biting her lower lip in an effort to keep it from trembling, she threw her arms around the other girl in a tight embrace. "I love it," she said quietly. It was clear that Aurora was trying to make her feel better, but instead of the action being irritating, it made her spirits lift a bit.

She took a step back, her hand swiping at her wet eyes, and fixated a more genuine smile on Phoebus as he entered the room. A nod of understanding in response, she made quick work of wrapping his food and placing it in the microwave to be reheated later. She also boxed up Ellyion's food, taking special care with the cute white laced bow that she wrapped around the box.

When she stepped away from the counter, a package of sweets were thrust near her face, catching her slightly off guard. She smiled, however, through the surprise and accepted the goodies, going on her toes to peck Phoebus lightly on his warm cheek.

"I cannot wait to eat them! I'll take them with me to work and share them with Mr. Zwemmer!" she exclaimed excitedly, accepting the peace offering with glee. Slipping the package into her bag, she quickly boxed up her own breakfast, having only just noticed the time. "Speaking of, I really need to get going to work. Don't worry about dropping off Lio's food - his little home isn't too far from the bookstore, so I can do it!" She slipped the cute little blue and white box into her bag atop the package of sweets given to her by her elder brother. The two boxes rested beside her large book with its matching ink bottle and quill alongside it. Her wallet lay atop that, alongside some music sheets that she planned to transpose from their current Bb Clarinet status and instead into their Eb Clarinet counterpart. Working at a bookstore was fun, but definitely not eventful. It was a fairly busy shop, due to it being only one of two bookstores in the entire town, but it really didn't see a lot of outstanding action.

With that, she lifted her apron above her head, dropped it onto its peg beside the door, tugged on a gray colored sweater and then flattened it out over her skirt. With a quick wave over her shoulder and a mental word with Dusk and Mio, who scampered down the stairs to meet her, she took off out of the kitchen, quickly slipped her brown boots onto her tiny feet, and was out the door in a matter of moments. As she walked outside, she drew on her ever present brown leather gloves, enjoying the warmth of the sun shining above her. Instead of taking her flashy - she cringed at the thought - car into work with her, she opted to walk, having planned out enough time for her to walk to Lio's private home and then to her work with a leisurely pace in between.

Her movements faltered a bit, however, as she passed by a specific diner that she had been at the night before. As she proceeded by the windows, she couldn’t help her straying gaze. It looked through them, ignoring the slight glare that the morning sunlight made on the panes, and almost instantly locked in on the orange mess of hair that belonged to a certain busboy who was employed there. His back was to her, so she took a moment to pause and look in at him. Dusk and Mio propped themselves up on the outside ledge of the windows, craning their heads to look at Takeo too, obviously curious as to what had gotten their mistress so distracted.

Despite the distance and the separation of windows between them, Velonix was able to make out the slight outlines of muscles underneath his shirt. Her siblings and herself all had enhanced physical abilities, of course - their strength and speed were above that of a human’s, and their stamina and agility were on par with those. Their hearing, sight, taste, smell, and sense of touch were above that of a human’s, also, although her brothers definitely surpassed her by far in her sight and sense of smell, and if her own were phenomenal, she could only imagine how incredible her brother’s were.

She would definitely be lying if she said that the sight of his lined muscles - he had a leaner physique, giving his muscles more definition - didn’t stir something deep inside of her. The sensation of her cheeks growing warm caused her to slap her free hand over one, her eyes growing wide as her breathing hitched slightly. His aura was a perfect match, with its mesmerizing swirls of blue, orange, brown, red, and black. It was one of the most colorful of auras that she had ever seen attached to a single human being, and it had caught her eye instantly. She may be a goddess, but she was far from blind, and to her, the young man standing a mere fifteen feet away was extremely, extremely attractive, in both appearance and aura.

Takeo moved slightly, his motions that of someone lifting an object, and when he turned he was holding a tub filled with dirty dishes, his attention focused over his shoulder as he shouted something indiscernible undoubtedly to Ruri or Yousuke. In that moment, it was almost as though time froze for her. Her heart stopped in her chest and her breath went with it. He looked so ungodly familiar that it almost hurt, and she felt a feeling in her chest that she couldn’t quite place a name on. Was it longing? She couldn’t ever remember feeling the emotion, but it was something that seemed familiar, almost as though she had felt it before, even though she knew that her parents had ensured that she had never wanted for anything growing up.

When she looked up from where her gaze was focused on the center of his abdomen, it was to meet his intensely focused hazel eyes. The darkness in them caused a small well of anxiety to twirl in her stomach, and she quickly looked away. After standing there for a moment longer, she bit her lower lip, fighting off the well of tears that threatened to overflow, and turned away.

Writer’s Note: This post ends rather abruptly and awkwardly because it will be continued in the next post, which will be a slight collaboration between Cutup and myself involving the characters Reiya, Ryou, and Velonix.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Kazumi Orako Character Portrait: Natsuo Orako

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Kazumi's Code- #FF1493
Natsuo's Code- #0000CD


Both Kazumi and Natsuo were happy with the response Velonix gave their gifts. Seeing their sister in such better spirits tended to create a domino effect, so much so that the two older seasons didn't even tease each other for once. Kazumi was never one to rush eating so she took her time eating the delicious meal Velonix prepared. Both she and Natsuo managed to say bye to their sister as she left to give Ryou his breakfast.

Once her sister was gone Kazumi turned to Natsuo quickly, "I guess you'll handle the next delivery the next time our brother doesn't show up. Or do you want me to?"

Before Natsuo headed out the door, he turn to the eldest. He thought about his answer for a few minutes before replying.

"If he doesn't show up tomorrow, I'll take it to him since I have the afternoon shift tomorrow. I haven't seen him in a few days either. If there is one thing I don't like about being me, it's my low tolerance for cold weather."

Kazumi smiled sympathetically. Even though she could tolerate cold weather better than Natsuo, she still preferred warmer weather. Velonix was slightly more tolerant to colder weather than her too. Still the sisters saw Ryou more than Natsuo. Natsuo loved Ryou, it was just a shame that due to their seasons, they couldn't see each other as much as they would like. It was easier for Natsuo to go into colder areas than for Ryou to go into warmer areas. At least in colder weather, one could bundle up more, whereas in hot weather you could only wear so much clothing and the seasons could only regulate their body temperatures to an extent outside of their comfort areas. Ryou could withstand below zero levels, but hated hot weather.

"Well I am going to train. You going to work today right?" Natsuo asked.

"Mmmhmmm, I'll probably be gone by the time you get back from training. I really enjoy working the morning shifts. I'll see you this evening, but I'll let you know if something comes up."

Natsuo would have left, but a sudden thought came to him.

"How much longer do you think it'll be before they find us?"

Kazumi sat up at that and answered in a serious tone, "Not much longer I believe. That's what my gut has told me. This world is very technologically advanced. Due to this town having all four seasons here, it wouldn't surprise me if word got out already of the circumstances. Both Astra and Nixon take their duties seriously and Nixon is pretty much obsessed with Harmony. We're going to have to come up with a plan with how to deal with them because you know they're going to demand we return home immediately."

Natsuo nodded, fully agreeing.

"We're going to have to talk to Harmony about this. Since it was her decision to come here in the first place, I've always felt it should be her decision on when we leave. When do you think we should bring this up?"

"Tomorrow. Today we'll give her a day off since she's in a good mood. We'll need Elyion home too. He's better at keeping her calm than the two of us put together." Kazumi laughed.

Natsuo smiled too.

"I am going to train now. Have a nice day and be safe." he said before leaving.

Kazumi finished her breakfast and cleaned up after herself. She than finished getting ready by brushing her teeth, putting her hair in a low ponytail, and applying on a little make up. Being who she was, she really didn't need to put any make up on, but she enjoyed putting on a little mascara and lipstick. Her skin was immaculate so she didn't need any of that facial stuff. Calling on Eos and Dawn, she left and headed to work.

She always got there early to help Fudo set up for the store to open. She put the vests on the dogs and with her own spare key to the work place, she went inside. She just got that key this week too. Fudo was apprehensive about giving her one, but seeing how natural and responsible she was with working at the place, he gave her a key, on the condition that she didn't arrive before him. It was something she was fine with. She removes her shawl and goes to where the employee's room area. It was small, but head enough room for some lockers and a small fridge for food. Kazumi always ate out so she never used it. She had her own locker and in it she had her work apron and name tag. The apron was to prevent dirt from getting on her outfit. Removing her shawl, she grabbed the apron, placed the shawl there, and put the apron on. The name tag was already pinned on the apron. Heading to the Greenhouse that was attached to the store, Kazumi walked in to see Kudo checking on some of their stock.

"Good morning Fudo." Kazumi said.

"Morning, Kazumi. Give me a hand with these dahlias okay?" he asked.


"Yes sir!" Kazumi replied before going to help him.

Eos and Dawn made sure to stay in a corner out of the way as they watched Kazumi work. Soon it was time to open up the store and Kazumi made sure to clean her hands before doing that. She was at the register when with the dogs behind her when the store bell chimed, signally someone coming in. Knowing Emiko wouldn't show up until after lunch, Kazumi put on her brightest small and turned to the door.


"Welcome to Sachi's. Is there anything I can help you with?"

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Kazumi Orako Character Portrait: Yuji Kentarou

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The dark green door stood in front of him menacingly. He could already feel the rush of emotions and memories beginning to overwhelm him. His hand balled in a fist, he raised it slowly towards the door, feeling like he was moving in slow motion…and then he knocked.

The door pushed open on its own, having not been locked. No other noise accompanied the creaking of the aged hinges. The house was completely dark, the only light coming from a window at the opposite end as the sun had just started to rise.
Yuji took a single step in. Goose bumps prickled at the back of his neck. Something was wrong, something wasn’t right. The entryway was cold; all the windows of the house had been open for some reason. Then it hit him. The sickly, metallic smell of blood filled his nostrils, clouding his head. It instantly made him nauseous. He clamped a hand over his mouth, trying not to retch.

He continued slowly toward the kitchen, his footsteps echoing on the hardwood floors. A quiet moan cut through the air. Yuji stopped instantly. His body had begun to shake, the hand over his mouth moving back and forth rapidly, his legs barely able to hold himself up. As he began moving again, he rounded the corner, staring down at the floor as if he knew what he was expecting.

The image of his mother laying on the ground would forever stay in his mind. Her long, ebony hair stuck together in knots, having absorbed most of the blood around her head. Her limbs were sprawled out, her pale arms clutching her stomach. The white shirt was almost entirely wet with blood. The hardwood had taken on the deep crimson as well, having already absorbed some of it. And her face, her face…. Her face had lost all colour, her once pink lips drained entirely. Her black eyes were wide open, staring right through Yuji, her pupils searching for something to focus on. Her lips parted slightly, an airy cry escaping as her arm slowly extended out towards Yuji, her fingers fumbling and grasping at air, reaching for something, anything, reaching out for life—


Yuji shook his head violently, forcing the image out of his head. Once again the dark green door stood in front of him, though with a new coat of paint and some flowers hanging from a pot beside him. He was in the same place, but not the same time. He was okay. His mother was okay. Everything was okay.

Except, he was feeling extremely nauseous again. Trying to regain his composure, he cycled a few deep breaths and waited patiently. He could hear footsteps inside the home, and then the door opened.

Before him stood his mother, small, reaching nearly a foot shorter than him. Her long black hair was twisted into a bun, and she wore a pleasant flowery blouse and skirt. Her face lit up at the sight of her son. She outstretched her arms and welcomed him with a massive hug.

“Oh, Yuji! I’ve missed you so much!” She cried, her voice muffled in his shirt. Yuji gently enveloped her in his arms, resting his head on top of hers.

“I’ve missed you too Mom.” He said gently, giving her a squeeze before pulling away. She stared up at him and then pulled him into the house, closing the door behind them. Yuji took off his shoes and stepped onto the hardwood. He hadn’t been here for almost a year now. For a moment, the memory returned to his mind, but he pushed it away. The house had been refinished and furnished with new furniture, much to his approval. The money he had sent her had obviously gone to good use. The home was cozy as well as open. Light walls, dark wood, curtains and fabrics of pastel colours, and flowers absolutely everywhere. Yuji smiled to himself at the sight of the home, following behind his mother, his luggage trailing behind him.

“I’ll fix you something to eat, you must be so hungry. Go put your luggage in your room, it’s just the way you left it!” His mother called as she began gathering food and cooking supplies for Yuji’s late breakfast. He nodded his head and made his way down the hall, entering the first door on the right.

The walls of his room were adorned with posters of various comic book heroes, and playbills from the drama productions of his highschool. In the corner sat a lonely desk that he never used for its intended purpose, and a small single bed on the other side, made neatly with a pile of comic books resting on the side table under the lamp. He threw his bag on his bed and breathed in deeply, a bit more relaxed now that he was with his mother. Yuji took a step towards the window, peeking through the curtain to look outside. It was a beautiful day, sunny and bright. His mother had been working on her garden it seemed. The flowers and vegetables were blooming, reaching up to the sky. He was almost excited now to go out into town and visit some of his regular stores. Of course, he’d have to be careful about how he presented himself. Though Akita was small, he was sure that people here had seen him before and knew his face from television.

Digging in his bag, he took out a pair of sunglasses and a baseball cap as his makeshift disguise, and made his way back into the kitchen.

There, he spoke with his mom and reminisced with her while enjoying her tofu and rice. She told him about what had changed in Akita since he had been gone, and he shared stories of his acting with her. After an hour or two of spending time with one another, he kissed her on the cheek goodbye and told her he would be right back, he was just going into town for a bit.
Yuji pulled the baseball cap over his messy black hair, and pushed the sunglasses over his eyes. He should just look like another everyday person. He wasn’t being followed by his agent or any security guards and he wasn’t wearing any brand name clothing. He would just be another face in the crowd. Where would his first stop be? Maybe he’d go out and find a gift for his mother, to thank her for her hospitality. The house was only about a fifteen minute walk from shops downtown. Maybe he’d get her a nice flower arrangement, something extravagant and colourful, just for her.

As soon as he started to get into areas with more people, he began to feel a bit nervous. Even if someone only glanced up to him for a second, he would hold his breath, as if that would help him not be discovered. But every person passed by without a word.

"I have to just....act normal...I can't keep getting this nervous. Damn, it's like my first show all over again..." Yuji thought intensely as he moved down the sidewalk towards the buildings in the distance. Why did he feel so nervous? Why was he so afraid? All he had to do was act like he was just a regular citizen. Here, he was determined to be just that.

None of the buildings downtown were especially tall or large. There were a few packed together, with some plant life and landscaping around them, then there would be another massive gap before more buildings popped up. A few of them were empty with "For Lease" signs in the windows. As he passed an empty storefront, he stared into his reflection passing by in the window. It was difficult to recognize him with his shadowed face and shielded eyes. Yuji smirked and focused his gaze ahead of himself once again. A few blocks down he saw a sign advertising a flower shop. He continued on his way towards it. He would probably have to talk to salespeople inside. They were probably a bunch of old folks though. Those were the type that usually owned flower shops, anyway.

He pushed open the glass door and heard a small bell ring with his entry. His eyes scanned the store, looking over the bountiful arrangements, the array of pots and fertilizers and supplies all for taking care of flowers, and finally, the girl that stood at the register. Yuji didn't even hear her greeting.

"Isn't it supposed to be old people that work here?" He thought to himself. His eyes hadn't moved from staring at her, though you probably wouldn't have noticed with the sunglasses on. Her hair matched the shade of many of the flowers in the store, her eyes doing the same but only in a deeper, more pleasant tone. She was cute. Really cute. Yuji's lips turned into a small smile. Maybe with a bit of his charm he could get to know her a bit more. Maybe even take her home.

He parted his lips to speak, but suddenly his voice faltered. He was overcome with nervousness. It was as if something had grabbed his throat to stop him from talking. Why couldn't he speak to her? This never happened, he was always ready to make a comment about a girls' eyes, hair, or smile. But with her, he just...couldn't...get....it...out!

"Ahhh...umm...I...." Was all he managed to muster. His smile faltered, and he tore his gaze away from her, turning his head to look at a bouquet to his right. His sunglasses jumped down the bridge of his nose a bit with the quick movement of his head, but he quickly pushed them back up. Yuji let out a sigh, thinking himself through the situation. All he needed was flowers for his Mom. That was it. Nothing else. He would be gone in a few minutes.

"Can you do...custom arrangements?" He blurted out, turning to look at the girl again. No no no, wait, he didn't want a custom arrangement! He didn't even know what kind of flowers he wanted...he didn't know anything about them. All he knew was that some of them were different colours and they smelled nice, that was about it.

"I need something...ah....pink--" He glanced at her eyes again. "And...more pink."

He was screaming internally. Why did this girl make him so nervous? Why couldn't he talk? Why couldn't he be flirtatious and charming right now when he really wanted to be?!

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Kazumi Orako Character Portrait: Yuji Kentarou

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Kazumi's Code- #FF1493


The minute the young man stepped into the shop, it took all of Kazumi's control to keep her cordial smile on her face. Internally though all of her instincts were going off and she felt like the floor beneath her vanish. However, she wasn't bound to let the mortal thing he had any kind of effect on her. Her mind starting working again in a few minutes as she mentally scolded herself for her lack of stability.

~Knock it off Aurora! This is not the first attractive mortal you've seen!~ She thought to herself.

Indeed, she had seen plenty of good looking men, but this was the first time she had been affected by one. Even though the moment only lasted a few seconds, it felt longer than that. She started paying attention to the man again when he started mumbling what he wanted. His words and mannerisms amused Kazumi. With her enhanced eyesight, even though it didn't come close to Natsuo's ability, she could see pass the shades to see his eye movements and they kept moving from her hair to her eyes. She was very much use to this kind of attention since she noticed how most Japanese folks had dark hair and slanted eyes. This man clearly was from this area by his looks, but unlike others, his skin was a bit darker and there was only a hint of the Japanese accent she had heard a lot of. He must travel a lot.

His manner of speaking made Kazumi want to giggle and flirt a bit, but she was working so she kept her professional attitude. She'd be lying to herself if she didn't admit that she enjoyed making men melt and befuddle their brains. So she was feeling very satisfied with herself at the moment. It was a darn shame that almost all guys she met were like that. Only male mortal she recalled that she didn't initially affect this way was her own boss.

"So you want a pink flower arrangement? Can I ask who this is for and if this person has any favorite flowers? I can supply a small card if you want."

It was at this time that Eos and Dawn came to the counter and both dogs sniff the man before standing on each side of the counter, eyeing him. Kazumi sighed before turning back to the man.

"Don't mind them, they're just protective of me and do that to people I meet. Dawn and Eos are well trained dogs."

What she didn't tell him though was they normally go back behind the register. She knew through their connection they sensed her true feelings and were more wary of this man because of that.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Astra Blackwell Character Portrait: Nixon Sparx

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"The minute that you stop caring what others think
is the minute that you become your true self."





The ride to the airport was less than extraordinary. The taxi driver was an angry hobbit, who spent the entire trip complaining about his quote-on-quote, 'whore bitch of a soon to be ex-wife that just wanted all of his money' - though it was doubtful that the man had any money given his current profession. However, Nixon suffered through it, giving an occasional nod as though he were actually paying attention to the seemingly endless rant, and when the time came where the car finally slowed to a complete stop, he practically threw open the door to the vehicle and scrambled out in a desperate need for escape. A wad of bills were tossed haphazardly over his shoulder and onto the backseat, and he made for a brisk walk inside the massive building, ignoring the shouts of the driver behind him.

Once he was inside, the shouting became a distant and forgotten memory, already shoved completely from his mind. The interior of the impressive fortress was neutral in coloring, varying from simple whites to even simpler grays, with a few monotonous blues thrown into play. It was brightly lit, stinging his eyes when he first entered, slowly becoming accustomed to the lighting given the darkness of the outside world. The normal clamour that surrounded an airport ricocheted around him - parents shouting at their equally-loud, screaming child; people arguing with the baggage claims personnel; the random soccer mom pitching a fit at the ticket counter over some God forsaken, ridiculous thing; it was all so normal, and it made Nixon slightly uneasy to be surrounded by it.

Adjusting his grip, the back of his hand resting on his shoulder and the bag hanging down his back, he shoved his free hand into his pocket and strode towards one of the ticket counters. As he walked, people slowed and dropped their voices to hushed whispers, many of the women turning light pinks in hues and their eyes widening. His mere presence was enough to bring a large man to his knees, and women swooned over every step he took, causing a slightly feral smirk to quirk up the corners of his lips. As he made his way easily to the front of the line, his crimson gaze flashed with a ruby glow with each person he passed who even attempted to stop him. Immediately their expressions turned slightly dazed before they settled in, barely even making note of the strange man who had so rudely cut in line before them.

Slap.

“One ticket to Wakkanal, Hokkaido - one way, first class.”

The ticket woman blinked, her eyes momentarily coming to rest on the wad of bills that had been smacked onto the counter before her. Finally, she slid it across with a dainty touch, didn’t bother to count it, and quickly printed off his ticket. He turned away, snatching it from her hand and tossing her a slight wink, and strode directly past the security personnel, who simply blinked in confusion. One attempted to step before him and stop his procession, but with a single look up at the large man, Nixon was able to slip by, the man holding his head in sheer bewilderment.

”Now boarding flight 22A, boarding gate 5B, destination Wakkannal, Hokkaido, Japan. Now boarding flight 22A, boarding gate …”

It didn’t take him long to reach the gate and make himself at home on the aircraft. The first class area held only two other passengers, although it could easily accommodate twenty, and was separate from the second and third class areas by a sliding door. He chose one of the expensive seats at the very back of the seating, and slipped his bag above him in the overhead storage. A gaggle of stewardesses stood giggling near the pilot’s flight deck, their own little area to sit and prepare things for the customers directly before it, and were looking between him and one another. A swift game of rock, paper, scissors ensued, and the victor let out a quiet squeal before striding down the aisle, obviously putting extra effort into her walk being a bit extravagant.

“Welcome. My name is Uria, and I’ll be your stewardess for this evening. Is there anything that I can get you?” she asked in a soft purr, leaning against the seat before him and making it very clear when she used her upper arms to slightly plump up her bosom. Nixon raised a slight brow for a moment, before a sly grin slid across his face. His eyes flashed ruby once more, and the rest of the people in the first class and stewardess area turned away, seeming to have completely forgotten his presence entirely.

“You can come and have a seat on my lap - I’d love to have some company for this trip,” he allured. She let out a soft giggle and did as requested, easily making herself comfortable.

No, the flight itself wasn’t going to be boring in the least.

~*.*~*.*~*.*~*.*~*.*~


The traditionally styled Japanese Inn was beautiful and quaint, yet very impressive in appearance. Nixon slipped out of the limousine, which he had ordered while on his flight along with booking the hotel room, and sized it up, immediately taking in the quickest escape routes if need be. It was a precautionary measure drilled into him since he was very little - and still alive - and although his new family had done their best to rid him of the actions, it was as the saying went. ‘Old habits die hard’.

Hefting his bag onto his back, he made his way inside, revelling in the quiet nature that surrounded the little hotel. It was privately owned and fairly expensive, but it wasn’t as though he were lacking in funds. As he approached the desk, he had his phone out and was typing away a quick text.

To: Sexy Senior
2:23am

I’ve already arrived at the hotel. I’m sending you the address now. A limousine is waiting for you at the airport, so look for a chauffeur holding a sign that says ‘Leila’. He’ll bring you here, and when you arrive, tell the front desk attendee that you’re here with ‘Annakin’. She’ll give you the room card and tell you which room to head to.


He smirked at the use of his Star Wars references. If there was one thing that he was obsessed with in the human world, it was movies, and the Star Wars series took the cake. The idea of other life out among the stars fascinated him, and Star Wars captured the concept beautifully and creatively, much to his viewing pleasure. Nixon turned his gaze up to the woman at the front desk, flashing her a dazzling grin.

“Do you speak Russian?” he asked her, and she nodded curtly, her whole demeanor strictly business. I forgot how formal the Japanese were. “I’m checking in for Annakin, room for two,” he held up his index and middle finger. The woman typed something into her computer, made a few clicks, and then slid a key card across the counter. “My friend will be arriving in a few hours. Can you make certain that she receives the proper information and a key card as well?” The woman nodded once more, pursing her lips a bit. “You will be in room eight,” she said in broken Russian, clearly more proficient in understanding than in speaking the language. He acknowledged her, took the key card, and made his way down the halls until he found the room, which was directly beside the hot baths entrances. The door unlocked with a soft beep, and he slid inside, flipping on the light.

The room was typical in Japanese fashion. The only furniture in the room were a television stand with a flat screen TV, a table that was short to the floor with a matching cushions to kneel upon beneath it, and one gargantuan king sized bed sat on the floor. The bathroom had some weird looking contraption that was supposed to be a fancy toilet, and had a large hot tub styled bathtub in it. There were sliding doors beside the table that led onto a tiny, secluded deck that overlooked the beautiful gardens, and he immediately went to prop them open an inch. Dropping his bag on the floor beside the television, he kicked off his shoes and socks and face planted into the feather-soft bed, instantly snoring away.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Velonix Orako Character Portrait: Tak Tachibana

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"If you want a~'.'~'.'~'.'~"No one is sent
Fair and just world~'.'~'.'~'.'~By accident"
Go find a different one."~'.'~'.'~'.'~to anyone."



Tak tossed and turned on his bed several times before he finally decided to just lay on his back, and stare up at the ceiling. He let out a loud, almost animal-like yawn as he stretched up his arms. He knew it was gonna be a bad day. He slowly rose out of his bed with an almost zombie-like quality. He tried to shake off the restlessness of the night.

For whatever reason, he couldn't get Velonix out of his head. He replayed the conversation they ended the night with over and over in his mind. Each time his chest tightening up. He's said worse to people over seemingly trivial matters, and never felt bad about it. But for some reason after hearing the shakiness of her voice he just couldn't get it out of his head and felt a strange, unpleasant sensation swirl inside him.

Tak looked around his ‘room’, the old storage space of the bakery in the attic. It was covered wall to wall with extra chairs and tables of varying sizes for a variety of occasions they may cater to, but with some ingenious stacking techniques he had himself a decently sized open area for his small bed, old box TV set with stolen cable, and a decent sized bookshelf with an underwhelmingly small amount of books, just a few copies of some of the Dune series, and a couple books by Arthur C. Clarke. Not nearly enough to warrant the size of the bookshelf.

He rummaged around one of the two laundry baskets that held two pile of clothes. One basket was for clean clothes, and the other dirty. Rather than just using a dresser or closet to keep his clothes he just leaves them in their respective baskets until laundry day. While he might live on a small island in an ocean of chairs and tables, it was a surprisingly clean and tidy area. After spending time in what was pretty much a prison he's found that keeping his room tidy to be a particularly hard habit to break.

Despite him being invited to stay in the spare room of Ruri and Yosuke, Tak preferred to stay alone, and away from people. While hesitant at first, the couple eventually allowed him to stay, since he doesn't really do any harm to the place. Once he was dressed in a pair of black shorts, and a white sleeveless shirt he quickly made his bed, another habit that he picked up inside, he went down stairs for some breakfast.

Tak scrounged around in the kitchen cabinets until he found himself a box sugary cereal. After making himself a bowl of cereal he stepped out of the kitchen, and hopped up on the counter, and began eating his breakfast.

Right in the middle of his meal, he was interrupted by the front door bell chiming, signaling someone had entered, and that someone was Ruri. Looked like it was her turn to open up the shop today. ”Well good morning Ladykiller, strange seeing you here so early. How'd the date go?” She greeted him with a mischievous smirk. Tak merely rolled his eyes. ”It wasn't a date! Besides, she's just some rich kid bored with her life, and wanting a charity case.” He stated, his cold expression and tone covering the unease he felt over Velonix.

Ruri puffed up her cheeks and flicked him on the nose. ”You're such an idiot! She obviously had a thing for you, and you obviously have a thing for her! Sheesh! I'm gonna have to get her number to invite her over so you can apologize!” She growled at him, starting up their usual bout of fighting. ”As if! She's just using me for something! Either to make herself feel like a good person, or else to piss off someone! My guess she's just hitting her ‘rebel’ stage, and looking to piss off her parents! So just drop it!” He shouted.

Ruri let out a loud, and frustrated sigh, scratching her head over what to do. Then a slick grin crossed her lips. ”Ok Takeo, I won't talk about her, but you gotta make those delicious treats of yours! That's the price of my silence!” She said, her mouth nearly watering. Tak groaned, wiped some milk off the corner of his mouth. ”Pfft, fine.”

It took awhile, but he was finally finished with the many imagawayaki that Tak was forced to make to satisfy Ruri. Once he was finished, he grabbed a tub and began filling it up full of dirty dishes. ”I swear, one of these days you're gonna tell me how you make them this delicious!” Ruri nearly squealed in excitement, it was a treat to be able to eat his cooking, despite how good he was at it, he's never been enthusiastic about it, just treating it like a chore. ”You just suck at cooking!”

Tak felt an intense gaze fixed in on him, causing him to turn around and see Velonix standing outside the shop's window, just staring at him. His heart almost stopped at that moment, his throat getting dry, and a strange surge of emotions swelled up inside of him. He focused his intense gaze on her, his stern face not betraying the strange sensation he felt when she looked at him.

Their eyes met for a moment that felt like an eternity, with her amber eyes becoming his sole focus. What was it that those eyes saw of him? Was he just some charity case to her, or some stray animal to be nursed back to health? The more he wondered about it the redder his face became. And then he noticed something: her eyes were moist; was she going to cry? Velonix suddenly turned away, catching Tak by surprise. He looked away from her, keeping her in a small corner of his vision. Once she was out of sight Tak let out a frustrated sigh. Why was she about to cry? Did the mere sight of him just cause her to cry? Did he hurt her that much? Or did she hate him that much? Why did he even care? He pushed those questions aside as he hurled the tub of dishes to the kitchen.

Ruri stood in the doorway of the kitchen, silently watching as the two gazed at each other. Her eyebrows were perked up in curiosity, and slight amusement. She pressed down on a plastic container full of Tak’s treats, securing the lid on top of it. She gave him a mischievous grin as he passed by her, awkwardly shuffling along, keeping his eyes to the ground.

After getting the dishes into the sink, next was the load of garbage that needed to go to the dumpster. Tak carried two full black garbage bags, both almost the size of him. He managed to wrestle them into the dumpster, and afterward he dropped down to the ground, taking a breather on the back steps.

”Dammit….why is she so goddamn irritating!” He sighed, never once has one person managed to irritate and confuse him like she has.

~You know, he’s kind of a silly human. Why is he shouting at himself?~

Dusk peered around the corner of the bakery, Mio peeking his head just over hers. They had branched off from their mistress not too long before, having told her that they were going to explore some more of the quaint town that they had so abruptly found themselves in. Obviously, that was a lie - or was it? - given that they had opted to, instead, spy on the human boy that had piqued Harmonix’s interest so much. Whether their interest was out of concern for her well being or general curiosity, neither of them could say, but it was definitely there.

~I’m not really sure, Selene. Maybe he’s not mentally stable? I don’t want a mentally unstable human so close to our Harmony.~ Dusk scoffed in response to that, rolling her dazzling blue eyes. ~You do realize that that’s a bit hypocritical, don’t you? Seeing as Harmonix isn’t quite mentally stable herself~ Mio growled slightly, looking down at the top of her gray head. ~Don’t talk about her like that. You know as well as I do that none of that happened because she wanted it to. Dusk turned a cool gaze up to meet Mio’s slightly hotter one, and if anyone looked at her, they could have sworn that the cat raised an eyebrow - if she even had one. ~I do realize that. But that also makes me wonder if something may have happened to this boy, as well. I don’t believe him to be unhinged in the same way that our lovely lady is, but I do believe that he’s been through quite a bit in his short life. How can you rightly stand there and adamantly defend Lady Harmonix for a mental disability, just because she didn’t want it to happen to her, but then judge this boy for perhaps having similar circumstances?~ The lack of a response from Mio was enough of an answer for Dusk, who straightened, pushing him slightly off of her. With her head high, she strut around the corner and walked right up to the boy, letting out a loud yet pretty, ”Myow,” as she reached him. She moved her head against his calf, nuzzling him through his clothes. ~Hey, Mio, he smells really good! Like the best tuna and salmon!~ ~No way he smells just like the fancy stuff,~ Mio argued, trotting after her, his own curiosity winning out as well. As he neared the boy, he sniffed, and immediately darted to his side, sniffing around his ankles. ~Ooooh, he does smell really good!~

Tak looked down at the two cats that suddenly appeared. They looked familiar. He looked up and down the alley, looking for any sign of their owner. Once he was sure she wasn't there he began to relax. He looked down at the two cats, his expression softening. ”You're the Cinnamon Roll’s therapy animals or whatever right?” He asked as he leaned down, and rubbed underneath Mio’s chin with his index and middle finger. He's been around stray animals to realize how to approach animals in a surprisingly non-threatening way. He then reached his other hand down, scratching at the back of Dusk’s head. He moved his hands in a circular motion, causing them to purr loudly. Mio tried to hold it back, but when Tak slowly moved his hand from underneath his chin to the back of his head he couldn't contain it any longer.

”I'm surprised you two like me so much, since Miss Goody-Two-Shoes can't seem to look at me without being a big cry baby.” Tak sighed. Why did it bother him so much? He's used to getting scornful looks from people, but that. He's never been looked at like that. ”Why is it so hard to deal with her? What does she want from me?” He sighed. People were so complicated, it's so much easier to not deal with them. ”And why am I asking her cats for answers?” He let out a stiff laugh. ”This is why I hate dealing with people….it's too much of a hassle.”

They were then interrupted by the sudden arrival of the Bob-tailed cat that always hangs around the shop. The stray cat waltz over to Tak, slipping in under his arm, and sat down his lap. She started nuzzling her head into his chest in a jealous manner. ”Well, at least you guys like me…...I guess that's something.” Dusk rolled her eyes at the stray. ~Oh, come now. No need to act so territorial, child. Trust me when I say that you can have the boy. We’re simply curious; investigating him out of worry for our own mistress. We don’t want him.~ Mio snickered a little, obviously trying to seem more masculine after having crumbled under the hand of the boy. ~We really don’t want anything to do with him; we’re just looking out for our own lovely lady. He’s all yours.~ The stray glared in their direction, slightly baring her teeth. ~Don’t talk about Takeo like that! He’s a good person! You should want him - he’s the best! And why would you need to ‘investigate’ him for your mistress, anyway? He’s not a bad person - he’d never do anything to her!~ Dusk fixated a cool stare on the cat, sitting down directly beside Takeo’s foot so as to be pressed up against his leg. ~He’s already made her cry twice, and they’ve only met each other twice. Of course, that’s reason enough for us to find out what type of person he is. However … Our findings so far have been quite promising. I’m looking forward to seeing how things play out and go between him and Lady Harmonix. We will not interfere unless he proves to be a directly negative impact on our mistress.~ The stray looked away in a huff, nuzzling her face against Takeo’s chin. During the conversation, though, Mio had made his way over to the dumpster, where Takeo had recently tossed the garbages. After searching through it for a minute - all the while grumbling over how disgusting and lower class it was of him to dumpster dive - he emerged with a very specific pastry in his mouth. It had been tossed due to it being burnt on one half, and he scampered down from the dumpster and over to Takeo. As soon as he reached him, he promptly dropped the vanilla frosted cinnamon roll on the ground before him, nudging it closer with his nose, before sitting up regally. Dusk made her way to his side, dropping down beside him in the same position, and together they fixated what they hoped to be serious looks on the human boy. What they were attempting to convey was their wishes for him to not lose hope over the interactions that he had had with their mistress, but instead follow the lead that his piqued interest could take him in.

Or something along those cheesy lines. It wasn’t as though they could just tell him what they wanted to say; if they did, he’d think he was going crazy, or worse, would suspect otherworldly magic or mysticism, and they couldn’t have someone suspicious of the siblings running amok. So the best thing that they could do, at least for now, was to give him subtle hints that nothing was as it seemed, and that he should push through the self-doubt and confusion.

Tak raised an eyebrow at the two cats, as they seemingly presented him a burnt cinnamon roll from the garbage. He stared deeply into their eyes. There was something off about those two. ”Sheesh, you two are so weird. If you're hungry you don't need to go rooting around in the trash.” Tak said as he picked up the stray cat off his lap, and placed her down on the ground. ”Wait here, I'll be back in a sec.” Dusk and Mio looked at one another, rolled their eyes in unison, and sighed internally. Clearly, manipulating him was going to prove to be more difficult than they initially thought. The boy was a bit slow.

Tak returned to the kitchen for a brief moment. The stray cat began circling around the two unfamiliar cats, sniffing them as she did so. ~This mistress you keep talking about. How do I know if she's good enough for Takeo? For all I know she doesn't deserve him!~ She stopped in front of them, and sat down, keeping her gaze fixed on their eyes. ~Takeo saved my life, he saved me from getting run over, and he's been feeding me every day since then. He's cared for me while other humans ignored me. Without him, I wouldn't be here. And it's not just me either! He cares for other strays as well! He's the kindest, and bestest person!~

~As I said before, child; the boy has already made her cry twice. Not simply once, but twice, and both of those times were the only times that they’ve met. However …~ Dusk trailed off, seeming to lose herself in thought. ~... However, we can both tell that she has an odd interest in him. And believe us when we say that for her or anyone in her family to take an interest in someone from here is very, very rare. They’re … Solitary people, so none of them really like outsiders. But Har-Velonix, that is, for some reason likes the boy.~ Dusk refocused on the conversation. ~Trust us when we say that we know our mistress’s feelings very well. And while Takeo appears to be crude, rude, dishonorable, immature, and sloppy on the outside, because let’s be honest, he does give off such an appearance.~ She held up her paw as the mortal cat began to argue, silencing her. [i]~However, that doesn’t seem to be the case behind closed doors. He clearly uses that brutish demeanor as a defensive maneuver so as to keep humans at an arm’s length, minimum. Obviously, there are some mental scars caused by previous traumatic events that are stunting him from becoming the kind person that he so very clearly is in front of people of his own species.~ Mio bared his teeth slightly, his eyes glinting in warning. ~And besides that, our mistress is one of the most gentle and sweetest of girls that anyone could ever meet. Don’t you dare insinuate that she is anything but. Any man, especially a mortal, should count his blessings and consider himself so far beyond lucky to have her, if he were to win her heart. She couldn’t harm a fly, but instead would opt to do whatever she could to help it.~ His tone was snappish, obviously taking it as a sore topic to probe, and Dusk gave the cat a slightly apologetic look.

Tak returned with a small plate with a single slice of turkey on it. He ripped the turkey up into three pieces, and sat the plate on the ground for the cats. The Bob-tailed stray quickly ran over to the plate, making sure to be the first one to get a piece. ”Huh, you hang around here so much I guess I should really give you a name.” He looked the cat up and down, trying to think of a good name for her. ”Hmm….how about Mochi? You look like a Mochi to me. What do ya think?” The stray looked up at Tak, and let out a pleased meow, obviously showing a liking to the name. ”Glad you like it. Mochi it is.” Dusk and Mio stood back for a moment and exchanged glances. A memory momentarily flickered between their minds.

“Thank you for the milk for Mio and Dusk. I don’t want what I say next to undermine how appreciative I am of you doing that for them. However, I wouldn’t make it a habit of giving cats or kittens too much milk. It can be really bad for their health, despite what cartoon depictions have given you of felines and milk. Most adult cats are lactose intolerant, actually,” she said, taking a breath before continuing. “I’d personally recommend giving them some sort of meat, fish, cheese, eggs, or vegetables, with simply a bowl of water to wash it down. It’s a lot better for them, and not to mention a great deal more filling. Milk should usually be reserved as a special treat every now and again, and only given in small amounts.”

Mio nodded slightly, turning to face Takeo once more.They had gotten what they had come for, so without bothering to approach the plate, while he was focused on Mochi they took off silently, and so swiftly that when he looked it, it would be as though they had simply disappeared.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Azusa Yamanouchi

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Azusa's already early morning began even sooner than usual as her phone went off with a fusillade of messages from her mother. As she scowled her way through the line of text, the short of things was her cousin Gakuto would be arriving later this day. He was going through another profession craze and was considering the path of a Kannushi - which would be a load off her shoulders in taking over the shrines in the unlikely event it stuck. However the fact that his freakish ability to pick up and learn things had already been dedicated to the family business this summer was a good thing...and to put him through the ropes she'd dump the West Shrine on him. After all, it and the South Shrine would be the two busiest shrines at this time of year and the hands there would considerably lighten her load. The less welcome part of the messages was the twins from her father's side: Akari and Haruka would be arriving at some point in the week was well. While her relation with the two couldn't be called bad, it wasn't necessarily hostile, however she and the twins had bad chemistry to say the least.

To be frank, she wasn't sure if she could trust one of the twins to the South Shrine or not, but that bridge could be caught when they arrived.However the young lady shoved such matters from her mind as she quickly arose and settled the affairs at her shrine. It shouldn't need to be said, but of course those affairs included her archery practice. However because the other shrines didn't have practice bows, she'd have to lug her current practice equipment with her towards the West Shrine (provided one was willing to overlook that despite her earlier-than-usual rise she was still "late" in her departure. As a result, Azusa opted for an option she was loathe to take: running through town in her full shrine regalia. Unfortunately, this also meant she couldn't stop to grab a quick breakfast en route. Nevertheless, to save time Azusa found herself running through main roads since everyone opted to take less direct routes...creating the irony of "dodging" traffic turned out to be the major traffic.

The girl didn't have a chance to appreciate the irony though as she recklessly bolted through the streets to make up for the lost time...that useless cousin of hers had better bring her something nice to make up for this!

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Kazumi Orako Character Portrait: Yuji Kentarou

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Yuji felt relieved after hearing her well-versed and practiced replies. At least she hadn’t laughed at him. Though, she probably had noticed his nervousness. Before he could even respond to her questions, two dogs suddenly rushed out from the back, pushing themselves as close to the counter as they could. Their noses prodded at the air, getting as close to him as they could. Yuji smiled at the Akita and Shiba Inu, pleased to see the two dogs. He had loved dogs so much as a child, even though he had never been able to have one. He was quite comfortable around them too, seeing as how many of his shows and even some movies had him interacting with trained dogs for scenes.

He looked back up at the girl as she explained the presence of the animals. Their eyes seemed to glimmer as she said their names. Yuji’s smile grew a bit wider as he looked at her. It felt like she was staring straight through him. While he had previously, and very confidently, looked right to her eyes and pink locks of hair, he suddenly felt embarrassed, and averted his gaze to the dogs once again. They both seemed a bit tense with his presence. He realized it must be due to his glasses covering his eyes. Without even thinking about it, he pulled his sunglasses off his face, hoping that maybe the animals would be a bit more comfortable now that his gaze was revealed to them.

Of course, now just the hat remained, shadowing only a portion of his face. Yuji slowly extended his fingertips towards the Shiba Inu, making sure to keep distance, but allowing the dog to get more of his scent. Something inside of him suddenly switched. He felt a lot better, more calm, more like himself.

“They seem very nice!” He chimed, looking up at her and flashing a genuine smile. Yuji made eye contact with her, but something seemed to claw at the back of his mind. Something he had forgotten…did he leave the light on in his room? Forget to lock the door? Forget to say goodbye to his mother? His face went blank as he was absorbed into thought, trying to remember. Oh right, the sunglasses! He had taken off the sunglasses! …Wait…he had taken off the sunglasses…

Yuji froze with the sudden realization , and trying to act as normal as he could, scrambled to put the shades back over his eyes, fumbling to open them, pushing them up the bridge of his nose with intense urgency. It definitely did not look normal, but with them back on, he turned to look at her again and spoke to break the silence.

“I need the arrangement for my mother. Pink is her favourite colour. You have some real nice stuff in here, but I kind of want something even…bigger than anything you’ve done. I don’t really know a whole lot about flowers though…you got a catalogue or something?”

He wished with all of his heart that this woman had no idea who she had seen, or maybe didn’t see his face for too long to recognize him.

“ Stupid Yuji…that was real stupid.” He chastised himself in his thoughts. If this one person knew who he was, and blabbed about it to all her friends, he would never have a peaceful moment here.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Natsuo Orako Character Portrait: Azusa Yamanouchi

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Natsuo's Code- #0000CD


Natsuo made sure to get a good work out in. When he went back inside, sure enough, Kazumi was gone. It always felt weird to be alone in an empty house. Pushing down the unnerving feeling, Natsuo went to take a shower and get dressed for the day. Before eating himself, he refilled the various bird eaters around the place. That was one chore he took up since he was a bird person. Besides some of the bird feeders were too high for the others to reach. With that done, he finally reheated his breakfast and got himself some hot tea. He loved his sister's cooking. Normally she did breakfast and he did dinner. Already he was thinking of what to make everyone. It was interesting how none of them ate the same thing with Aurora being a veggie eater, he loving his spice, Harmony with her sweet tooth, and Ellyion eating cold food. Sometimes they were eat similar things like Aurora and Ellyion would eat salads at times. He really missed them being all together though. Maybe they could eat out together tonight? Or sometime soon. Knowing his sister was working now, he decided he would wait.

Finishing breakfast, he decided to get out and find one of the shrines. That one mortal caught his interest and he was genuinely curious about these 'shrines'. Maybe he should research them first. So he took 30 minutes to check online about the shrines. The internet was a pretty interesting thing humans came up with. He learned how to navigate it in no time. He found out that the most likely shrine that young woman would be at was the Western one. Seeing how close it was, he decided to walk. Decision made, he quickly finished getting ready and headed out.

After a ten minute walk he finally made it to the shrine. This was was different from the last one, but he could see the similarities. Immediately seeing the fountain, he decided to obey the rules for once and washed his hands and let them dry naturally. He walked around, but not finding that shrine maiden. It be a darn shame if by some chance he missed her. Sitting at one of the benches, he looked out, watching the birds fly around, one of them being Aeolus this time, who actually flew right onto his shoulder.

~Are you actually waiting for someone, Master Pheobus?~
the bird asked.

He was actually the most curious and loquacious of his bird friends.

~Believe it or not I am. But if she doesn't show up in ten more minutes, I'll just have to leave. Seeing how I don't have anything else to do at the moment, I am willing to be patient for a time.~ Natsuo replied back telepathically.

The bird shook his head and took off, leaving Natsuo alone.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Kazumi Orako Character Portrait: Yuji Kentarou

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Kazumi's Code- #FF1493


Unfortunately for the customer, when he had removed his sunglasses while interacting with the dogs, she recognized him instantly due to have great visual memory. When the dogs stood next to the booth, Eos immediately mentioned it.

~Lady Aurora, it's that model.~ he told her into her mind.

~I am very much aware of that, Eos. A man wearing sunglasses into a building? Of course he's hiding something. I expected someone more flashy and confident, but I guess not.~

~So what will you do about it?~

~Nothing. He's just a mere mortal like most people.~

Turning back to the man she knew to be Yuji Kentarou, Kazumi watched was he realized his blunder and quickly put his sunglasses back on, a bit clumsily. That solidify the fact he was trying to hide his appearance. She really couldn't blame him though. She learned that those who were considered 'famous' not get much privacy in their lives. In fact, the predicament she was in was similar to his. Her siblings were 'in hiding' as well because they wanted to be 'normal'. She listened to him as he described what he wanted before asking for a catalog.

"Hehe, don't worry sir. That's why I am here; to help. I am pretty good with flowers. And I can certainly made something big, as long as it fits through our door and into your mother's home. We do have a catalog too." she replied before taking a catalog next to the register and opening up. It was cataloged based on color. Pink flowers tended to be one of the biggest sections and it was the first one.

"So, as you can see, we got numerous types here. All the pictures you see are our standard sizes, but I can easily modify them. Hmmm, this one is nice. The feature here are the pink lilies, but there are others here for variety. Or this one with tulips is very elegant and nice. Unless you want an arrangement with mostly roses, might I recommend these roses due to color variation." she said as she pointed out the three arrangements.

If he wanted custom, she would use the primary flower he liked the most and than make an original arrangement. It warmed her heart that he wanted to do something for his mother. She remembered her own mother and for a second really missed her. Her eyes lost their shine for a second, but she quickly recovered and looked at Yuji to see what flowers he liked.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Natsuo Orako Character Portrait: Azusa Yamanouchi

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When Azusa finally arrived at the West Shrine winded from her mad dash, she opted for a breather - and used a bit more water than she normally would to get rid of some perspiration. Still as she ascended the stairs her mind was on getting things ready for her cousin until a certain someone finally came into view within the shrine itself. What was that Half doing here? Certainly she said she'd school him today at either here or the South Shrine but it wasn't like she thought he'd actually take her up on it! Was he some kind of weirdo with a fetish or just a stalker? Still aside from the shock on her face no words left her mouth, after all the fact he guessed right on a 50-50 could mean anything...right?

" I see you found your way to the West Shrine today." The teenager strained out the sentence since there was no way to get deeper into the shrine without attracting any attention. If such was the case she may as well just get the whole thing over with.

" I don't suppose you're here for a tour?" As a cautionary measure, Azusa had made no move to advance closer than necessary. After all, she wasn't an idiot - with such a height difference his stride was much long than hers and the potential need to run that much harder. Of course if she did have to run and could get away, the police would definitely take her side over that of a foreign Half Japanese. Still, negative considerations aside, the young lady wasn't about to visibly give so much as a millimeter of ground on her own turf. It was definitely beginning to look like the start of a rough day.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Velonix Orako Character Portrait: Reiya Himura Character Portrait: Ryou Orako 2

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#, as written by CutUp
Collab with Kura


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"I don't think it's funny at all."

Reiya’s head snapped up at the sudden voice, her expression going still. The cold air slapped at her wet cheeks, and it was only then that she realized how chilly it had gotten to be outside. In fact, she could feel the coolness in her bones, which ached slightly in protest to her remaining out in that temperament. It wasn’t like she was really dressed for it, and despite her love for snow, winter, and really all things that were on the frigid side of the climate, she was definitely beginning to feel as though she were freezing.

None of that mattered, though; instead she could feel embarrassment welling up within her. The last thing that she had expected was for the pervert from the day before to be nearby, and she hadn’t really wanted anyone to see her crying, so to say that she was mortified would have been an understatement.

"I...I too know what it's like to lose someone you care about. To lose someone that makes you feel like you belong. I may not know you very well, nor what it is that pains you so, and it may not be my place to say, but it will get better. It may not seem like it now, but pain is temporary. It always hurts before it gets better, that is how you heal is it not?" Reiya bit the inside of her cheek, refusing to look up at the boy who stood before her. It made her uncomfortable for anyone to see her lose her normally cool exterior, and a stranger nonetheless! However, she hesitated as he spoke. What he said made sense, at least to some extent, but it didn’t change her mindset on the view of an omnipotent being controlling the events in their world. While she has always remained open minded when it came to the thought of those types of beings existing, seeing as she was an intellectual first, she couldn’t wrap her head around nor fathom the idea of such a creature existing and yet still allowing such sorrowful occurrences to arise.

It just didn’t make sense.

"It's easy to think of pain and hurt as something bad, and that shouldn't exist, but where would mankind be without pain? Think of all the art, music, and literature that wouldn't even exist without it. And how could you appreciate joy without experiencing sorrow? When bad things happen people are so quick to forget the beauty in the world, and yet focus on the bad, but I think both are needed to make it complete." Reiya tightened her arms around her legs for a moment before abruptly relaxing what was almost a death grip, her watery eyes focused on Ryou’s shoes.

”It … Would be foolish of me to argue with such sound reasoning,” she mumbled. After a moment, almost as though she were gathering herself, she finally turned her gaze up to meet his dazzling golden orbs. ”But that doesn’t change the fact that a good portion of the suffering and loss that occur in the world are without both reason or necessity. It isn’t an equal balance, at least in my own personal opinion - you can very easily look throughout the history of humankind and see far more destruction and misery than there is happiness and joy, and that is something that is inexcusable to me,” she finished quietly, averting her gaze slightly. It jerked back to him when a pale hand moved into her line of sight, almost an extension of himself.

"Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional. You should get off the ground, you may catch a cold.”

Her heart stuttered, almost in the exact way that her voice often did when she was nervous. What was this feeling?

”This is my home, would you like to come inside for something to eat or drink Miss Himura?"

Hesitation very clearly flew across her features. She didn’t know this boy, just his name, so why would she trust him enough to enter his home? Finally, after mulling it over, she reached out and accepted his hand, allowing him to pull her to her feet. She stumbled a bit, his pull a lot stronger than she expected it to be, and was forced to steady herself on his arm. Their immediate close proximity caused her heart to once more stammer, and a slight flush rose to her cheeks. Her eyes slowly raised to meet his, and after a solid five seconds of holding his gaze, she stepped back quickly, her focus moving to her feet.

It didn’t take Velonix long to reach Lio’s street, and by the time she did she had more than recovered from her ‘interaction’ with Takeo. Mio and Dusk had branched off from her walk, telling her that they were going to explore, so she was on her own for the time being. As she grew closer to Lio’s small cabin of a home, she noticed two figures standing on the sidewalk before it, one she knew and one she was a stranger to - a small girl with a cute, peach bob of hair. Stifling her mild confusion, Velonix quickened her pace, throwing up her arm and waving happily at her younger brother.

“Ree-you!” she sang out, drawing out his Earth name dramatically. “I brought your lunch!” she practically shouted, running over to side. She fished through her bag for a moment before drawing out the box and thrusting it in his face, beaming up at him. “I made one of your favorites - deviled eggs and crepes!” she beamed, obviously quite proud of herself.

Reiya’s attention jerked away from Jack Frost lookalike that stood before her, her startled gaze settling on the moving burst of orange that practically threw herself at Ryou.

”M-mobile cinnamon roll?” she exclaimed in surprise, stumbling backwards a step. The movement pulled the other girl’s attention away from Ryou and her intense gaze focused instantly on Reiya, who felt herself hesitate. She could feel her cheeks warming and a ball of anxiety curled within her. The girl was ethereally gorgeous, and exactly on par with Ryou. Was this his girlfriend?

It wouldn’t surprise her. Of course someone as attractive as he was would have an equally beautiful girl to stand at his side. But if she wasn’t surprised, than why was it that she felt a small pang of jealousy deep within her? It wasn’t as though she knew him, nor did she want to.

So why?

Ryou looked over curiously at Reiya as he notice the change of skin tone in her cheeks. She was letting a peculiar scent. He tends to find that humans release different pheromones that gives away some of their emotions, and with his advanced sense of smell he can get a fairly accurate sense on what someone is feeling. From what he could tell she was nervous, embarrassed, and with a slight dash of fear, and antagonistic from her scent. Along with something he's never quite smelled before. Hmm, how odd? Is she starting to come down with a cold?’

Velonix leaned in, peering down at the girl who was only an inch or two shorter than herself. She studied her cherub features, her eyes narrowed in thought. A mixture of purples, blues, and whites swirled around her, cool and yet incredibly warm at the same time, and the only thing that caught Vel off guard was the random darts of black streaks throughout it, that disappeared almost as quickly as they appeared. When she finally leaned back, she beamed a smile at the young girl, throwing up a hand to wave at her excitedly, a bright smile on her face.

“Hello there! I am Velonix Orako, Ryou’s older sister! It’s so nice to meet you!” she said happily. Turning her head, she lightly punched Ryou in his shoulder, despite their drastic height difference. “Ryou, you did not tell me that you had such a cute girlfriend!” she teased, a toying grin on her lips. Immediately Reiya’s face turned a bright, crimson red. ”“N-n-n-no, y-y-y-you have th-the wrong i-i-idea! U-Um, di-did you know that humans share about 50% of their DNA with bananas!?” she stammered out, mentally cursing her stutter and her inability to filter her words. Velonix raised her brow in confusion, her lips twitching in humor at the random fact.

”Ohhhh….uh-uh she's just a friend! W-w-who h-h-happens to be a girl….B-but just in the friend way! T-t-though not because you’re u-u-unattractive or anything! I-I’m sure you must have a-a boyfriend or far better suitors than I!” Ryou stammered out. ”Umm…..Miss Himura rescued Yuo from a Fox, and nursed her back to health. W-w-which thank you again, I'm extremely grateful for…. without Yuo around I'd feel a little…..um nevermind.” Ryou stopped himself from saying anymore. He probably embarrassed himself enough as it is. Velonix quirked up a brow at her brother’s response, which was extremely unlike his normally composed self, even when being teased by their siblings or herself. He usually responded quite coolly, without very much emotion, so to see him embarrassed was a slight surprise. Her stare moved between him and the blushing Miss Himura, her other brow quirking up suddenly as though she realized something. A slightly mischievous grin curled up her lips, and she narrowed her eyes a bit. ”Oh-ho-ho, I see how it is,” she giggled out. Adjusting her grip on her bag, she slowly began to make a backwards retreat away from the two. ”Do not mind my interruption - please proceed as you were! It was very nice to meet you, Miss Himura, and I hope very much to see you again sometime soon. Please, take good care of my brother while you are in his company!” And with that, Reiya watched as the moving cinnamon roll disappeared around the corner at almost a run. She slowly turned her attention back to Mister Frost, her eyes wide with surprise as she attempted to recover and gather back her wits.

”Ah … Your sister seems … Interesting …” she spoke hesitantly, as if uncertain of if the wording would be taken as an insult or a compliment. She didn’t mean it as either, just as an observation. The other girl shared similar appearances to her, but other than that, there wasn’t very much that they had in common when it came to their personalities, or at least that she could tell from the brief interaction.

Ryou chuckled a bit. Interesting was one word for her. ”Ha, I suppose that’s one word for her. But she means well……...she uh has a habit of ‘mother henning’ around people…..especially when it comes to me and my siblings. We’re uh….” Ryou paused for a moment, thinking of the right word. ”Close family. It’s kinda been just us for awhile…But anyway let’s get inside. You’ll catch a cold. I have a nice fire place you can warm up by.” He awkwardly gestured towards his house. He was confused, why was he so nervous around her? And why was his heart beating faster.

’Umm…..Miss Himura rescued Yuo from a Fox, and nursed her back to health …’

Reiya went still, her fingers tightening around the bottom of her skirt. Ryou had told his sister that she had rescued Yuo from a fox, but from what she could remember, she had never once told him what type of creature had attacked the small mouse. Narrowing her eyes, she turned her gaze up to Ryou, taking a step back and away from him as though to distance them from one another.

”How ... How did you know it was a fox?” she asked, her voice dripping with suspicion and accusation. ”I never once … Said anything about a fox to you.”

Ryou blinked several times. Right, she’s human. He can’t tell her that Yuo told him herself. She’d think he’s crazy, or some kind of freak. He knew he had to do one thing, and that was to lie. ”Oh, I had assumed it was a fox from the wound. I knew it was too big to be a cat, and too small to be a dog. This area has slightly more number of foxes than what she is used too. Yuo was picking at her bandages last night, and I had to redo her bandages, and saw it.

While what Ryou said would make sense to the average person, if there was one thing that anyone could say about Reiya, it was that she was far from average. This meant that although he told her that he had looked at the wound and deciphered it as being from a fox, she could tell that he wasn’t telling the truth. His eyes moved away from her, and his quick shifting of his weight from foot to foot was another key indicator of his discomfort and uneasiness. Add int eh slight hesitation in his fumbled answer, and you had a full fledged lie, one that he said directly to her face. Her expression grew more distrustful and doubtful, filled with immense suspension, as he continued on.

”We were going to my sister’s home when she suddenly ran away from me. I don’t know why she did it. She’s usually well behaved. And I…...lost her. I asked around, and some people told me what happened, and that you saved her, and where you took her. I actually just barely missed you. I…..uh actually was waiting outside the clinic…..I was too scared to go in until you were done…….because I was scared of seeing Yuo hurt…..” He let out a sigh, and kept his gaze to the ground. ”I didn’t realize that her injuries were so severe. You probably think I’m a horrible, cowardly and uncaring person……..I’m sorry….I wouldn’t have been of any use anyways…..”

Stifling an urge to roll her eyes, Reiya flattened her skirt as a sudden breeze threatened to pick it up. Although it was clear that he was lying about where he got the knowledge from, he was obviously genuine in his affection for Yuo and how worried he had been. This pushed her to use one finger to slide her glasses up her nose, fixating a serious, bespeckled gaze on the tall boy.

“The mere fact that you were there and clearly concerned for her well being shows that you aren’t uncaring, Mr. Orako,” she sighed out, crossing her arms in a fluid motion. Hope and Clarity peaked around her legs at him, curiosity evident in their intensely black eyes. “Therefore, you aren’t horrible, and I’ve made the deduction that had you been there when she was attacked, you would have involved yourself just as I did.” She lifted her hand to gingerly touch her scabbing cheeks, which stung slightly in protest to the interaction. “So while you may be a pervert, you definitely aren’t a coward. You shouldn’t look so poorly upon yourself. Everyone has faults, but at least recognize those faults instead of pulling a few random ones out of your ass in a plea for pity. Anyone would have been afraid to enter a building where a loved one was currently fighting for their life - trust me, I would know,” she finished softly, a pang of sorrow resonating throughout her.

”If it’s not too much of a bother would you care to look over her dressing? I’m not too used to wrapping bandages myself…..I tried to just copy what you did.” Ryou shifted his puppy dog-like eyes over towards her. ”Besides, I think Yuo likes you……..and I’m sure you, and your companions here would enjoy a nice rest from the weather. It’s a……...um……..’win win’?” He added, with a small smile. He then let out a small laugh. ”It was quite fortuitous timing that you were just…….um what were you doing out here? Do you wish to……..um talk about what’s troubling you? I’m not sure if I’ll be able to help…..but sometimes it nice to have someone to tell your worries to…”

Reiya hesitated, the look he gave her causing her cheeks to turn a slight pink in color, but this time not from the cold air. It would be stupid of her to enter this random person’s home, when no one knew where she was or that she had stopped there other than his sister, who she doubted would suspect him of doing anything perverse towards a young girl such as herself. He could be a crazed maniac simply looking for a new victim to take advantage of - not that she couldn’t defend herself if given the need, though. With that thought in mind, she felt another one flitter through her consciousness.

You also want to spend time with him.

Her eyes widened slightly and she shook her head quickly in an effort to dispel the weird thought. She wanted to spend time with him? Definitely not! She didn’t even know him!

But still … The slight ache inside of her said differently. There was a part of her that was intrigued by the boy with the frosty white hair, and the curious part of her wanted to know what exactly there was for him to lie so profusely about.

In the end, the curious side of her won over - curiosity killed the cat, mind you - and she found herself already walking towards the cabin before she had even responded to his request.

“I’ll come inside long enough for Hope and Clarity to warm themselves, and to check on Yuo’s bandages, but no more than that,” she said, her nose slightly turned up as she made her way up the slight slope that would take her to the porch. When she reached the steps, she paused, looking down at her feet. “I’d rather not talk about my troubles. I just … Not yet,” she said softly. Shaking her head again, she looked up at the front door. “It’s a long and boring story, anyway - nothing that you should trouble yourself over. You’d be bored to death if you tried to listen to it,” she laughed a bit, her chuckle slightly dry and hollow. She approached the door and stopped, never one to just let herself into someone else’s home, and turned her eyes back over to Ryou. “But you’d better not try anything, Mr. Pervert, or I’ll kick you right in the knee - and trust me when I say that you really don’t want me to do that!” Looking over at the door once more, she crossed her arms, almost seeming to hug herself in the action. ”One more thing … I know you don’t know me very well, but please don’t run on the assumption that I’m stupid. I can tell that you’re lying to me, and I hate it when people think that I’m stupid enough to believe them when they lie. If you don’t want to tell me the truth, than all you have to do is say so - I’m content in knowing that there are things that people just don’t want me to know about them. I just hate it when they insinuate that I’m stupid enough to believe their fibs. So above all else, please, don’t lie to me, Ryou,” she said softly, allowing herself to slip and say his name for the first time. It wasn’t a mistake, the slip, but instead was done on purpose, in an effort to get him to understand that she was serious in her fragility when it came to lies. They were the one thing that she couldn’t stand, and would rather be told directly that the subject was something that the person would rather avoid.

Ryou’s face became more stern and serious, his gaze narrowing in on her. ”And I would ask the same thing, Miss Himura. Forgive me Miss Himura, but I am not used to dealing with anyone other than my siblings one on one, that is not to say that I'm a complete shut-in, so I am a little nervous. But that doesn't mean that I don't know when someone lies to me.” He said sharply, his tone cool, and collected. ”And I also would find it much appreciated if you didn't lie to me either. Even if it is a lie to thy own self.” It was clear that something was weighing heavily on her mind. Reiya recoiled slightly, her eyes narrowed. What an outrageous claim! She wasn't lying to anyone, especially not herself. She just … wasn't ready to talk about it, and definitely not to someone who was a complete stranger. And especially not a week before the anniversary of the accident.

”Like you said, we do not know each other very well. I don't know you either. It is conceivable for me to assume that you are in fact the….’pervert-stalker’ here. You did after all randomly show up in front of my home after we first met. Perhaps it is me who should be worried.” He pointed out. ”Do not place your assumptions upon me, not until you get to know me. And I will not place my assumptions upon you.” Reiya stared at him, and for a moment, the smallest of grins twitched at the corners of her lips. Touche, Mr. Orako, touche, she thought whimsically.

Ryou stepped up on his porch, gracefully manoeuvering around her to open up the door. His nearness caused goosebumps to speckle across her arms, and although it was only a slight brush, he briefly made contact with her arm. She froze, blinking in a rapid secession. Her breath caught slightly, and she took a staggering step back, her hand clutching at the center of her chest.

”Please come in. Apologies, but I don't have much in the way of entertainment.” As he swung the door open, the two foxes immediately walked in, sniffing around their new environment. ”Yuo, you have visitors!” Ryou looked up at her cardboard castle, with the top of the tower shaking. Ryou peered inside to see Yuo picking at her bandages. Reiya peered inside the doorway cautiously. She had never entered a man’s home before for anything other than something business related. Of course, this could technically be considered to fall under the ‘business’ category in a way. She hesitated again, flicking a glance at the sidewalk. After a moment, she inhaled deeply, puffing it out gently. She slapped her cheeks rapidly, turned determinedly on one heel, and then strode inside the cabin.

It was a quaint little cabin, with just one bedroom, a tiny kitchen that opened into the living room, and an even smaller bathroom. The furniture and belongings that it housed were very minimal, and neatly organized to boot. There were some books stacked neatly on a desk, and a good gathering of them on the bookshelf near it. There was no television, and from what she could see, there wasn’t even a phone, either, nor a radio. The only electronic device seemed to be a clock. The only thing that stood for notice was the immense cardboard castle on the coffee table, and the three beautiful instruments that were set neatly near a wall - a guitar, a violin, and a harpsichord.

The guy definitely lived a minimalist lifestyle.

Ryou stuck his hand into her tower, and gently scoop her up. ”I'm sorry, looks like she did it again. Can't leave her alone for two seconds.”

~Now there, she'll have to believe you now. You are a dreadful liar after all.~ He would have to remember to give her an extra treat later.

Reiya didn’t seem to register that he was speaking. Instead, she found herself drawn to the harpsichord, her feet seeming to move of their own will, and she only managed to stop herself when she was mere inches away from it. Her hand froze, halfway between her and the harp, and after looking down at her curled fingers for a moment, she reached out the rest of the way. One finger slowly plucked the high G, and then moved down to high F, just one step below. It repeated this slow movement back and forth twice more, before dropping down to high D, shooting back up to high G, and then down to high C.

The first measure to A River Flows in You.

A splash of red flew across her vision, tainting the beautiful harp with its color. She recoiled, drawing her hand in on herself and clutching it with her other palm to her chest. She hadn’t touched a harp since before her parents and grandparents deaths, and the instantaneous reminder of them that the glorious instrument gave her was enough to drive anyone insane.

”That was beautiful Miss Himura! I hadn't realized that you were a musician. Please feel free to play more.” Ryou said with a encouraging smile. ”I myself am a amateur street musician. But you were very good. Do you play often?” For some reason he felt a surge of excitement when he realized they both had something, even as trivial as this, in common. ”Do you play other instruments? I myself have the guitar, harp, and violin.”

The grimace on Reiya’s lips tightened at his words. Of course, anyone viewing from the outside would simply see a girl playing a harp and causing beautiful notes to float through the air. Of course he couldn’t see the inner turmoil that wreaked havoc on her insides. Relaxing her mouth, she closed her eyes for a moment and inhaled deeply. Once she had collected herself, she smiled softly and turned away from the harp, instead approaching Ryou so as to see Yuo.

”You flatter me, Mister Orako. Trust me when I say that I’m really not as good as you seem to think,” she said softly, reaching out and scooping Yuo from his grasp. The momentary brush of their hands caused her heart to quicken, but she spun away before he could see the slight pink on her cheeks. ”I haven’t played in years, so I’m very rusty. I just haven’t had the time.” It wasn’t a complete lie; she had very little free time between overseeing Himura enterprises, along with her various donations, volunteer work, her job at the vet clinic, gardening, and school when it was in session. She did have free time, though; she just had no wish to play something that caused her such immense misery. ”But no, I don’t know how to play any other instruments. Just the one.” She set Yuo down on the coffee table and knelt down beside it, her fingers making quick work of removing the lingering, loose bandages that were basically hanging off of the tiny mouse. ”Hold still now, m’lady, and I’ll be done quickly,” she said with a smile. Meanwhile, Hope and Clarity made their way around the cabin, sniffing different spots curiously, investigating their new surroundings. After they had thoroughly checked out the humble abode - it was very small so it didn’t take them long - they took to wrestling one another, their soft growls the only real background sound to Reiya and Ryou. She made quick work of reapplying the bandages, even adding some antibiotic salvant that she kept handy for occurrences such as this very one, and was finished in record time. Giving the mouse a gentle pat on her tiny head, Reiya, crossed her arms on the coffee table before her, smiling at Yuo. ”See? Now that wasn’t so bad, was it?” she cood, crinkling her nose slightly, almost as though she were teasing the small mammal.

A small smile crossed Ryou’s face as he silently watched Reiya work. ”You're quite good at this Miss Himura. Your work must be very….” He paused for a moment, thinking of the right word. ”Fulfilling. And it seems as though you enjoy it as well. I must admit, a part of me envies that. Being of use to others I mean. I wish I could be that…..dependable….” He sighed slightly, looking over at his instruments. Reiya smiled softly, so small that one could barely see it. ”Trust me, you’re dependable to Yuo. You did come and find her yesterday, after all.”

~Come now, stop your wallowing! You are of plenty use! If you wish to make yourself useful, then go play me some music!~ Yuo demanded, trying to cheer him up in her own way. ”Hmm, since I have heard you play, it would only be fair if you heard me play. Besides, I cannot allow your care to go unrewarded.” Ryou smiled as he approached his instruments, debating which one to play. He reached for his harp, figuring that if she could play it then surely she would enjoy listening to it. It took her a moment to react to his words, and when she finally did, she sat up quickly, her muscles going taut. ”N-N-No, w-wait, do-don’t-!” she breathed out, fear taking away her vocal chords and making the words little more than a squeak.

Ryou’s fingers hovered over the cords, being inches away from touching them. He closed his eyes, and took a deep breath in, and exhaled out his nose. After a moment of complete silence he finally began plucking at the strings. Reiya froze, her entire body going cold, as the first note rang throughout the house. He began playing The Nightingale. He kept his eyes closed, completely focusing on the soft melody.

His long, and slender fingers moved gracefully as they plucked the strings, all the while keeping a soft smile on his face. He was completely engrossed in the music, forgetting all about his surroundings. To him it was only him and the music.

Reiya’s heart hammered in her chest, so powerfully that it was painful. Her hands were held up slightly in the air, as though she had intended to stop him, but she was rooted in place. They began a slow tremble, which started in the tips of her fingers and slowly began to make its way down her body. Finally, it wracked her down to her very core, and it was an uncontrollable shake. Tears began to pool in her eyes, which stared seemingly sightless before her, instead seeing only images of a haunted past.

The screams of her parents. The guttural sound of her grandfather as he drowned in his own blood. The disgusting squish as her grandmother was impaled. And the loud crashing melody of the harpsichord in the spacious back of the limousine resounding throughout the entire vehicle. The disgusting smell of gasoline filled her nostrils, and for a few moments, it was just like she was there again, trapped underneath the dead, heavy bodies of her mother and father, pinned beneath the top of the caved in roof, which used her parents’ bodies as a cushion to soften the blow that hit her. She could still hear the sickening crunch of their spines and skulls. Her eyes looked waveringly down at her trembling hands, only to find them coated in blood. Blood that pooled on her skirt and legs, dripping down the sides of her peached skin. She lifted her shaking hands to her face, her palms sliding over her eyes, and she sprawled her fingers messily through her hair, shaking her head in rapid succession.

”No … No, no, no, no, no, no, no!” she finally cried out, tears pooling down her face. ”Please! Stop!” she sobbed, completely caving in on herself. ”Please … Stop playing … I beg you …” she whimpered.

Ryou was brought out of his trance by Reiya’s cries. He abruptly stopped playing, and opened his eyes to see the tears streaming down her face. Ryou’s heart sank, his music had never had that effect on others, and he'd never intended it to. Ryou stood up, and slowly approached Reiya. He wrapped his arms around her, and pulled her in for a tight hug. Using his superior strength he made sure that she couldn't easily get away, or struggle. Nonetheless, she fought against him, pushing at his chest yet not moving even an inch as she wrestled with his unyielding grip. It was weird for her - having someone hug her, especially when she had been crying. It was something that hadn’t happened to her in a very long time, at least since before her parent’s deaths. Having someone hold her in a moment of emotional turmoil showed weakness, and she couldn’t afford to appear as weak. ”Apologies...I didn't mean to upset you. It's ok, just let it out.” When it was clear she wasn’t going anywhere, she slowly stopped, her entire body relaxing in a way that showed that she gave up. The tears had slowed to large blobs of warm liquid, and her sobs had quieted so that all the sound that escaped her was her shaky breath. Ryou then began lightly petting the back of Reiya’s head, trying his best to comfort her. The motion was soothing, and instead of the relaxation of defeat, she shifted ever-so-slightly into an actual relaxed state. His hands were cold. Almost oddly so, and when his fingers made the slightest of brush through her hair and against her skin, it caused a small shiver to assault her. Why was he so cold? ”There's no shame in crying when you are in pain. And there's also no shame in letting others help you.” Her tears trickled to a slow stop until her cheeks were finally void of the drippage.

After keeping her locked in a hug for several minutes Ryou finally released her. ”Do you feel better now Miss Himura?” He asked. Ryou’s face showed genuine concern, not too different from how he looked when he first met her. ”Would you like something to eat or drink? I'm afraid I don't have much in the way of refreshments, but surely I have something to your liking.” Reiya kept her watery gaze down, her eyes focused on his chest for a moment. Finally, she lifted her hands, her long sleeves touching the tips of her fingers, and wiped at her face. As she did so she drew in a long, deep and shaky breath, and let it out at a slow tremble. Once she had composed herself, she removed her glasses and busied herself with wiping the lenses.

Suddenly, she paused in the drying of her eyewear. Her hands fell limply in her lap, her grip on the frames very minimal.

”Why … Why are you being so nice to me, Mister Orako?” she asked softly, her bangs falling to shield her eyes a bit. ”I….I don’t understand the question. Why wouldn't I be nice to you? You've done nothing to deserve mistreatment.” Ryou replied with a smile. She bit her lower lip and slowly looked up at him, their close proximity making her able to clearly see his face despite the fact that she didn’t wear her corrective lenses. Her eyes were tinged with a gentle pink that made her irises look a bit darker and still had the soft sheen of tears across them, and her cheeks were pink from her cries and rubbing at her face. She bit her lower lip once more, a bit roughly, and dropped her head, looking at her legs. ”Do you … Do you have tea?”

”Yes, I have Sencha, Gyokuro, or iced tea. Do you have a preference?” Ryou asked as he stepped into his kitchen, and reached up into one of his cabinets to pull out the packages of tea in anticipation to what she'd want. ”Do you want something to eat as well? I don't have much food here, since I usually eat my meals with my siblings, but I could scrounge something up for you.”

”I'll have iced tea with a lot of sugar, please,” she requested I'm a soft voice, embarrassment over her previous actions welling up inside of her. ”I'm not hungry though; I had breakfast before I went to the orphanage, and the children insisted that I have pancakes with them, too. I walked out feeling like I needed to be rolled away,” she laughed slightly, idly brushing her short hair out of her face and tucking it behind her ear. Reiya nudged up her glasses and pressed her lips together for a moment before sighing. “Look, I'm sorry for making a scene. It's just that … The harp reminds
me of some not so fond memories of my family in Germany. They're something that I'm not yet strong enough to face, so I'd rather not talk about them. The experiences were … Very traumatic, you could say,”
she explained meekly, her gaze focused on Yuo as she tapped her index fingers together nervously. “And as I said before, I don't know you very well, so please … Don't take offense by my secret. trust me when I say that very few people know about it to begin with.”

”You have nothing to apologize for Miss Himura. Tis I who owes you an apology for prying into your personal life.” Ryou said as he poured her a glass of tea. ”I meant no offense by it, as I said I'm not very experienced with people other than my siblings. So please forgive me if I overstep myself again.”

She drew in a deep breath and released it slowly, her eyes glancing at the window which had a soft gathering of snow already accumulating on its outside ledge. A gentle smile crossed her face. “Any who! I'm mildly curious. What is your favorite time of year?” She gripped the iced tea that he had recently handed her between her small hands, taking a small swallow from it. “Personally, I'm very fond of cold weather. Snow is my absolute favorite. It reminds me of home, and it has so many calming qualities to it. Everything just seems to stand still when it snows outside, and it makes me feel at peace with the world. So I would have to say that the winter time is my favorite season.” Reiya appeared thoughtful, and after a few seconds of thought, suddenly spoke again, her voice extremely soft. “Tell me, Mister Orako; when the snow melts, what does it become?”

Ryou blinked several times at her question. What an odd thing to ask. He couldn't help but feel a small tinge of delight at her choosing winter as her favorite season. Of course there was no way for her to know that he was the embodiment of winter, but it still made him feel good to hear that from her. ”When the snow melts it becomes water to be absorbed into the ground, or else it runs off to join larger bodies of water.” Ryou looked out the window, watching as the snow fell. ”In seed time learn, in harvest teach, in winter enjoy. I always enjoyed that quote.”

Reiya puffed up her cheeks and let out a loud sound that resembled a buzzer in a game show. “Wrong!” she exclaimed. She smiled at him and sipped her tea. “Alright, so you aren't entirely wrong. You just thought too literally of the question. You were lacking in creativity, but instead were thinking factually, which isn't necessarily a negative thing.” She waited a moment before turning her gaze up to the window once more, her expression softening. The sweetness of the tea soothed her and she felt her shoulders relax. A small and slightly nostalgic smile crossed her lips, and if one looked closely enough, they could almost see as the memories of her past flitted across her eyes. It was very clear in her expression that the winter time and its weather, most importantly snow, held a lot of meaning to her, which was unsurprising given where she grew up. When she finally spoke again, her voice was hushed, almost wistful in a way. ”Silly ..
When the snow melts, it becomes spring.”


A small chuckle escaped Ryou’s lips. ”Ah, but that's not what you asked Miss Himura. You asked what snow becomes after it melts, not what winter becomes when it passes.” He reminded her. ”After all, there are plenty of places where it doesn't snow during the winter, or where it snows all year round.” Ryou added. ”It seems you weren't thinking geographically.” He chuckled lightly. Reiya rolled her eyes and set her empty glass on the table, giving Yuo a slight pat on the head as she rose to her feet. She adjusted her sweater and grabbed her bag, letting out a slight whistle. The foxes rushed to her side and up to their spots on her shoulders, and she started for the door. ”My statement still stands. You think far too literally of a riddle, when in actuality the answer isn't the most obvious one. You should try to think creatively next time,” she said simply. ”And how often is it that the obvious answer gets overlooked?” He asked rhetorically. ”I really need to get to the clinic. I've already lingered far too long here. Thank you for the tea. I apologize if I intruded somehow.” She paused and turned back, leaning down so that she could look at the mouse in her castle. ”Do take care of your bandages, Miss Yuo. Try not to worry your father too much,” she smiled. ”It was a pleasure having you over Miss Himura, please feel free to stop by anytime. Oh, and do try not to overwork yourself. What is that old saying? The candle that burns twice as bright lasts half as long.” Reiya quirked her brow, nodded slightly, and with that she waved slightly over her shoulder at Ryou and left.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Astra Blackwell Character Portrait: Nixon Sparx

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“We are now arriving in Hokkaido, Japan. Please prepare for landing.”

The words sent a rush of relief over Astra. She closed her book and adjusted her seat. She could not wait to get off. The whining children and stench of sweat from the humans around her had made the entire trip unbearable. Part of her almost felt bad for disliking humans as much as she did, since they were the creation of her superiors, after all, but her sympathy never lasted long.

She pushed herself past the people, cat carrier in her grasp. The animal inside was meowing with a ferocity that she had never heard before. The cat probably wanted to get out of the carrier as soon as possible. She understood the cat’s impatience in a way that reflected her own. Getting off the plane was an absolute blessing. As she stepped out of the door and into the empty hallway, she finally felt as if she could breathe. Moving down the hallway, her eyes wandered to what was waiting for her at the end. A mural adorned with cherry blossoms, fans, and a painting of women in kimonos greeted her, with a banner across the top that said “Welcome to Japan!” in English. Below, the same phrase in Japanese. She read both fluently. Her quick reading on the plane had given her a basic understanding of the language, aside from a few odd phrases or specific cultural things. Astra reached into her pocket to check her phone.

To: Sexy Senior
2:23am

I’ve already arrived at the hotel. I’m sending you the address now. A limousine is waiting for you at the airport, so look for a chauffeur holding a sign that says ‘Leila’. He’ll bring you here, and when you arrive, tell the front desk attendee that you’re here with ‘Annakin’. She’ll give you the room card and tell you which room to head to.


The message had been sent nearly four hours ago. By the time she got to him, he would probably be passed out asleep. And who was Leila? Why that name? Astra grimaced at the message, her brow furrowing in confusion and distaste. She put her phone away and set out further, grabbing her bag from the retrieval area, and watching carefully for a sign adorning the name Leila. A man stood surrounded by a group of other chauffeurs, wearing a black cap and suit. The name was neatly drawn in English letters on the board he held. Astra walked confidently up to him. She stood taller than him by a few inches. She expected an odd look from him, maybe one of surprise, but she did not receive one. Rather, he looked at her eyes, smiled politely, and bowed.

“You are Miss Leila? I have your vehicle waiting, if you would follow me.” He spoke, his English nearly perfect and only with a slight accent. Astra nodded her head in agreement, slinging her bag over her shoulder. He shook his head with a sheepish smile, and reached an arm out towards her. Astra was left in confusion for a few moments before realizing that he was offering to take her bag. She offered it to him, preferring to keep her cat carrier with herself, and set off with the man through the airport. A small smile spread along her lips. Was everyone this cordial here? She had gotten a sense of it through her readings, but never expected it to actually be this prevalent in the culture. She had neglected to research this place very thoroughly upon her first placement on Earth. Everywhere around her, men offered to carry bags, people bowed to one another, children waited patiently alongside their parents…Maybe she would like it here.

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


Astra wished the limousine driver farewell, stepping out and gazing at the hotel in front of her. In an odd way, it reminded her of the town she usually resided in. The area was shrouded with trees, the hotel standing peacefully amongst the nature surrounding it. A quiet bubbling of a stream could be heard nearby. The sun had just begun to rise in the distance, drawing her attention to the mountains in the distance shrouded in fog. The road behind her was relatively untouched, the limo she was in having been one of the only cars on the road. The air was still. It was just so quiet .

Adjusting her duffle bag, she made her way inside, stepping up to the welcome desk. This would be a good time to practice her Japanese.

“Good morning. I have someone named ‘Annakin’ waiting for me.” Her accent was not perfect, her words were tainted with her slight English phrasing, but the sentence obviously made enough sense to the woman at the front desk. She curtly nodded her head and turned her attention to her computer screen, typing a few things on the keyboard before picking a room key out of the drawer, and setting it gently on the counter in front of Astra.

“You will be in room number eight. Please enjoy your stay, and feel free to use our complimentary hot springs.” With that, the woman folded her hands together and gave a small, cordial bow before returning to her work. Astra turned with the key card in hand, about to make her way down the hall before a man stopped her.

“Would you like help with your bags, Miss?” He offered. The man’s eyes wandered down to the cat carrier in her hand. For a moment, he seemed a bit nervous. The man was younger than the other staff of the hotel, and seemed a bit less experienced.

“Ah, I am not sure if animals are allowed in the rooms—“ He stopped, interrupted by a gentle hand on his shoulder. Astra let her fingers rest on him, staring deeply into his eyes.

“I am so sorry, I had no idea. I really need to keep her with me though, it is very important to me, and I’m sure you can just make one exception?” Her amber eyes danced with fresh tears, emotion sweeping out of her like a wave. You could see the man’s expression change from a stern gaze to a soft look of sympathy. She could feel, in return, his emotions shifting into what she wanted them to be. He bowed his head in apology, allowing her to proceed onward.

Astra lifted her hand from him, continuing on her way. Down the hall, she spotted the number eight on the door, and entered with her card. She barely looked at the room before noticing the familiar body on the bed. A glance at the clock told her that it was around 7 AM. She set her carrier down on the floor, opening the door. The white cat nearly leaped out, wandering back towards the partially opened screen to the garden. Astra bent down to unzip her tall black boots, placing them neatly by the door when she had finished. She unclasped her cloak, revealing her high-necked white blouse underneath, and set the outerwear on a hook by the door. Sweeping her forest-green hair behind her ears, she stepped around the room looking for the other bed. There was a large bathroom, and a garden, but she couldn’t find another bedroom.

While before, she had been careful to be quiet as to not disturb him, she suddenly lost all care.

“Did you only get one bed!??!” She cried loudly in an attempt to wake him up. She was tired, and a bit cranky because of it, and wanted nothing more than to sleep for a few hours, but not next to him .

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Natsuo Orako Character Portrait: Azusa Yamanouchi

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Natsuo's Code- #0000CD


Natsuo had seen her coming from a good distance. By the the time she reached him, he had his lazy smile in place. He could tell she wasn't happy to see him, but it he didn't mind. At least she hadn't ignored him. If there was one thing he and Aurora shared in common is that they were both extroverts and really didn't like being ignored. He remembered how jealous Aurora use to get when they were kids when he get more attention from their parents than her, or at least that's how she perceived it. But Natsuo knew he got more attention for his trouble making abilities. Looking at this shrine maiden, he could already see some similarities to her and Aurora.

~I better hope these two will never get together or I'll really be in for it.~ he thought to himself.

After the young lady asked her question about a tour, Natuso stood up and approached her, but didn't crowd her for once. He could feel her uneasiness underneath her hard shell.

"I will admit, these shrines intrigued me since I never seen anything like them, but I'll be honest and say I find you to be more interesting. I am in a good mood at the moment so I won't pester you too much because I know you have a job to do. If you want to show me around, I am game. By the way, my name is Natuo Orako." he said, introducing himself.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Velonix Orako

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”Fear is temporary.
Regret is forever.”



Velonix hummed as she made her way towards the bookstore, her run in with Ellyion and the human girl named Reiya having raised her mood tremendously. It was clear in the way that the two of them had been conversing that there were piqued interests there, whether romantic or otherwise, and it made her happy to think that her younger brother was expanding his otherwise dim horizons.

She halted in her stride, her brows suddenly drawing together as a melancholic thought flittered through her mind.

It’s your fault that Ellyion turned out this way.

Biting her lower lip, she turned her gaze down, her eyes locking the toes of her boots. The thought wasn’t entirely incorrect. She held a lot of blame towards herself for her brother’s introverted tendencies. Of course they had a lot to do with his powers, but if it weren’t for her, he wouldn’t have paused in his studies on how to control said abilities and would have progressed much further far more quickly.

Her fist clenched at her side, her nails digging into her palm.

If only she had been there for him when he had needed her, instead of frolicking around doing God knows what on Earth. Her fingers curled harder into her hand, her teeth biting down on her lower lip. If only she had continued to help guide and teach him, instead of getting wrapped up in her own pity story, maybe he would find it easier to speak to people, especially to their siblings and, well, her.

Loosening her death clench, Velonix stared down at the peach skin of her palm which was now speckled with crescent dips that were slightly spotting with red liquid. Whatever were to happen to her, she deserved it. She was a horribly despicable person and a sorry excuse for a sister, not only to Ellyion, but to Phoebus and Aurora also. She should have been protecting them, instead of the other way around. Truly she was pathetic.

Velonix removed a tissue from her bag and wiped it across her palm, slightly smearing the ruby blood across her skin. After scrubbing fervently for a moment, she threw the crumpled ball into a nearby garbage can, inhaled deeply, and continued along the sidewalk to work.

It didn’t take very long for her to reach the quaint little building on the corner of Sable Road and Ivory Boulevard. Gazing up at it from the outside, she felt a small smile cross her lips. It was cute from that viewpoint, with black finish coating the small amount of building that actually was the outside. The rest of the walls were windows lined with bookshelves that allowed mere strips of sunlight to seep inside due to the immense amount of books that clad the shelves. From what one could see of the inside through the panes, it was small and a well-organized mess, cluttered with very magazines, books, and books apparel, but in an oddly put together fashion. There was no risk of tripping over anything, but they definitely weren’t lacking in goods to be sold. Mr. Zwemmer was definitely prepared for anything that a book seeker may want to purchase.

The bell above the door let out the soft chime of Fur Elise as it was opened, causing the elderly owner to pop his head out from behind one of the bookshelves. When he saw Velonix a warm smile crossed his lips, instantly brightening her formerly chagrin features. He would never admit it out loud, but he already thought of her as the daughter that he never had, which was another fact that she only knew because she had made skin-to-skin contact with the man. He adored her, as he did with his beautiful kitty who she doted upon whenever he brought her into the store.

“Welcome back, Velonix,” he said cheerfully, he voice betraying his years with its slight croak. It was clear that he had aged quite a bit since his lovely wife had passed, but despite that he still always greeted her with a happy smile and a boisterous welcome.

Making her way behind the counter, Velonix fixed an equally bright smile on her boss. “Hello, Mr. Zwemmer. I trust your evening was well?”

Mr. Zwemmer chuckled a bit, striding around the bookshelf with a small stack of books in his hands. “Ah, it went very well, my dear, thank you for asking. After I closed the shop, Ms. Ponsi and I enjoyed a delicious dinner at Bake My Day, and then lovely night stroll through the park as we usually do before making our way back home. We watched the news, and then went off to bed so we could open shop bright and early today.”

Velonix giggled a bit, sliding her bag underneath the counter. “It sounds like you have an eventful night. I’m glad that you enjoyed it. Now go and enjoy the rest of your day off; I can handle the rest of the day and close on my own just fine.”

The old man frowned a bit, setting the books on the counter. “I don’t know … Wouldn’t that be taking away from your teenage experience? Shouldn’t you go out and enjoy yourself?”

Immediately Velonix waved him off, shaking her head at him. “Oh, no. You won’t be arguing with me this time. I had last night off, as well as not having to open this morning. Besides, we close early tonight so as to prepare for the holidays, remember? I’ll be fine!”

His frown deepened and he began to shake his head in return. “But I-”

“Ah! No buts!” Velonix cut him off, crossing her arms. “Gather your things and go and enjoy yourself with Ms. Ponsi. I will make sure to call you if anything comes up, but for now I want you to enjoy yourself.”

He seemed to hesitate once more before finally sighing and grabbing his own bag out from under the counter, chuckling softly as he did so. “You remind me a lot of my late wife - a spit fire through and through. Could never take no for an answer, and once she set her mind on something, it was in stone.” He sighed slightly, a faint forlorn look reaching his eyes. “I miss her,” he said softly. After a moment, his smile returned and he moved his gaze back to her. “That’s why it’s so nice to have your company around the shop. I can’t tell you enough how glad I am that you’re here.”

Velonix blushed slightly and waved both her hands at him. “You flatter me too much, Mr. Zwemmer. Now go! Enjoy your afternoon and evening!” The man chuckled, donned his hat and jacket, and made his way from the store, waving slightly over his shoulder as he left. As for Velonix, she settled into the chair behind the counter, flipped open one of the many books in the store, and settled in for a long, quiet day.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Natsuo Orako Character Portrait: Azusa Yamanouchi

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The half’s...Natsuo’s change in demeanor from the previous day was suspicious from Azusa’s standpoint. Certainly it was possible that he could have spent some time on the internet looking up various shrine details and that of etiquette as a whole. But implementing and remembering everything overnight was an entirely different thing entirely; sure he could have known all this and just been utterly obtuse the day before as an act though that just made his motive all the more suspect. Still since he’d given his name properly, she’d properly give her own this time.

“Azusa Yamanouchi, and if you don’t mind it being overly brief I can certainly give a tour before my cousin arrives.” She squeezed out a proper formal introduction before advancing past her guest (stalker). At any rate the pointed detail of family arriving should keep things tame enough. The ever rhythmic pattern to her gait unperturbed as she continued speaking.

” Given the time of year, this Western Shrine is the main one for the season but as we near Autumn the focus will instead shift towards the Southern Shrine. This shrine being dedicated to Byakko and the Buddha Amida as you can tell is designed with the respectives themes of the tiger and that transition from a gentle Spring to a fiery Summer. Meanwhile the South Shrine uses the theme of the bird Suzaku to capture that Summer to Autumn transition in all its colors and shades.” Despite her head being oriented so she could speak towards a guest while leading the way as it should… Azusa honestly neglected to actually check if she was being followed since she honestly just wanted to politely finish.

However that didn’t stop her steps from quickly cross the distance towards the main building of the shrine. As wish papers came into view that dangled along the rails and various tree branch she spoke again ” Given the time of year, it’s not uncommon for students to wish for good grades or summer romances here. Of course other wishes are also made, but forgive me for not wanting to indulge in rumours and gossip if I can. All I’ll comment is that I’m just a caretaker - a janitor for the enshrined - issues of wishes and policies should be directed toward the divinity in charge.” Of course she knew the joke was a weak one, but she felt no reason to truly be formal at the moment… something was just to inexplicably comfortable despite the situation. She quickly forced herself back into a more businesslike level of seriousness before speaking again.

” Atop the stairs are the large cords for shrine bells. Customarily those are rung two to three times. Inside the doors, which I’ll be unlocking is the interior of the shrine with the altar - mind the railings do in fact mean ‘don’t touch’. The door at the back is the Inner Sanctum, even I’m not allowed in there so naturally I can’t unlock it.” She rose her voice as she rushed up the stairs to act upon her statement. Finally, she had to presence of mind to address Natsuo.

”Anything more detailed or specific you’d like to hear?”

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View All » Add Character » 14 Characters to follow in this universe

Character Portrait: Velonix Orako
Character Portrait: Kazumi Orako
Character Portrait: Astra Blackwell
Character Portrait: Tak Tachibana
Character Portrait: Reiya Himura
Character Portrait: Natsuo Orako
Character Portrait: Azusa Yamanouchi
Character Portrait: Nixon Sparx
Character Portrait: Ryou Orako 2
Character Portrait: Yuji Kentarou

Newest

Character Portrait: Yuji Kentarou
Yuji Kentarou

"Oh, are you looking at me? It's alright, I get that all the time. Want an autograph?"

Character Portrait: Ryou Orako 2
Ryou Orako 2

"I'll do my best to be someone you can depend on!"

Character Portrait: Nixon Sparx
Nixon Sparx

"Life's best lessons seem to be learned at the worst of times." {MWIP}

Character Portrait: Azusa Yamanouchi
Azusa Yamanouchi

Our town is interesting?! You must be an avid dirt and bug collector

Character Portrait: Natsuo Orako
Natsuo Orako

Summer Son of the Sun and Moon

Character Portrait: Reiya Himura
Reiya Himura

"It's okay to be a glow stick. Sometimes we have to break before we can shine!"

Character Portrait: Tak Tachibana
Tak Tachibana

"People see only what they want to see."

Character Portrait: Astra Blackwell
Astra Blackwell

"I am not of earth or the human world, and I never will be."

Character Portrait: Kazumi Orako
Kazumi Orako

Spring daughter of Sun and Moon

Character Portrait: Velonix Orako
Velonix Orako

"We're all born with selfish desires so we can relate to those feelings in others. But kindness is created individually by each person."

Trending

Character Portrait: Astra Blackwell
Astra Blackwell

"I am not of earth or the human world, and I never will be."

Character Portrait: Kazumi Orako
Kazumi Orako

Spring daughter of Sun and Moon

Character Portrait: Nixon Sparx
Nixon Sparx

"Life's best lessons seem to be learned at the worst of times." {MWIP}

Character Portrait: Natsuo Orako
Natsuo Orako

Summer Son of the Sun and Moon

Character Portrait: Tak Tachibana
Tak Tachibana

"People see only what they want to see."

Character Portrait: Yuji Kentarou
Yuji Kentarou

"Oh, are you looking at me? It's alright, I get that all the time. Want an autograph?"

Character Portrait: Azusa Yamanouchi
Azusa Yamanouchi

Our town is interesting?! You must be an avid dirt and bug collector

Character Portrait: Ryou Orako 2
Ryou Orako 2

"I'll do my best to be someone you can depend on!"

Character Portrait: Reiya Himura
Reiya Himura

"It's okay to be a glow stick. Sometimes we have to break before we can shine!"

Character Portrait: Velonix Orako
Velonix Orako

"We're all born with selfish desires so we can relate to those feelings in others. But kindness is created individually by each person."

Most Followed

Character Portrait: Azusa Yamanouchi
Azusa Yamanouchi

Our town is interesting?! You must be an avid dirt and bug collector

Character Portrait: Astra Blackwell
Astra Blackwell

"I am not of earth or the human world, and I never will be."

Character Portrait: Natsuo Orako
Natsuo Orako

Summer Son of the Sun and Moon

Character Portrait: Ryou Orako 2
Ryou Orako 2

"I'll do my best to be someone you can depend on!"

Character Portrait: Kazumi Orako
Kazumi Orako

Spring daughter of Sun and Moon

Character Portrait: Nixon Sparx
Nixon Sparx

"Life's best lessons seem to be learned at the worst of times." {MWIP}

Character Portrait: Yuji Kentarou
Yuji Kentarou

"Oh, are you looking at me? It's alright, I get that all the time. Want an autograph?"

Character Portrait: Velonix Orako
Velonix Orako

"We're all born with selfish desires so we can relate to those feelings in others. But kindness is created individually by each person."

Character Portrait: Tak Tachibana
Tak Tachibana

"People see only what they want to see."

Character Portrait: Reiya Himura
Reiya Himura

"It's okay to be a glow stick. Sometimes we have to break before we can shine!"


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