|With or Without You
Author: ApocalypticPOTATO PM
Set two years after the ending of Love Hina, Motoko slowly learns how to deal with love and life at the Hinata Inn. Based on the manga.Rated: Fiction T - English - Romance - Chapters: 3 - Words: 9,867 - Reviews: 10 - Favs: 1 - Updated: 09-14-04 - Published: 09-07-04 - id: 2048694
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Disclaimer: Though I'm sure you could figure this out without even me writing it, I do not own Love Hina, though I bet I could make a lot of money that way. It belongs to Ken Akamatsu and all sorts of companies. I unforunately, am not he, nor am I a company. But now you know.
Stuff in italics = the thoughts
"Stuff in quotes" = the words
No sound effects yet, but when they come you shall be enlightened.
[Stuff in brackets] = the setting.
And finally, this fic is based off the manga. I like it better than the anime. Not that I don't like the anime, I just prefer the original version, which also in my opinion the "true version" of the story. But anyways...
[Summer 2003, Hinata Inn]
The full moon shone brightly in the night sky. It filled Room 302 of the Hinata Inn with a soft, iridescent glow. A young woman slowly sits up onto her bed. She puts her head in her hands, and runs one hand through her jet black hair. Her other hand clutches her night shirt right above her breast.
It's been two years since that day... The day when they knew; the day when we knew... The day when Grandma Hina came, and when Naru-senpai and Urashima learned that they were ones that they made promise to... I guess we all knew that they would end up together, and yet, all of us, I believe, hoped against hope that they wouldn't... I suppose...I suppose it took me the longest to realize the feelings I had for the so-called "pervert".
The lone woman sat in the semi-darkness of her room, decorated by the traditional armor and weaponry of her warrior heritage. She stared wistfully out the window, taking in the beauty and serenity the full moon brought with its gentle light. She sighed, a soft sound filled with nostalgia. It filled her with a fleeting moment of happiness, followed by the overwhelming sensation of sorrow. She chuckled dryly.
Of all the times I had to save the other residents from the fool. It's funny to think how most of the time it probably wasn't his fault, and yet he was punished anyway.
A lump filled her throat, as this bittersweet thought quickly turned from sweet to bitter.
But he never complained. He didn't complain once when Naru or I attacked him for the trouble he got himself into all those times. All the times when he had done nothing dishonorable...merely being as clueless as ever... always in the wrong place at the wrong time. Yet he never complained...Not once...Why?
This final thought brought tears to the warrior's eyes. She didn't hold them back; she was not ashamed anymore of what she once called a "weakness". But every time these tears, and the thoughts that accompanied them, tore her very soul apart.
Why? Why didn't he complain? All the times we needlessly punished him. Why didn't we believe him when he desperately tried to explain himself? Why did he have put our needs in front of his own? Our feelings instead of his? Why...Why, goddamn it!
She punched the futon she sat up in.
Did...Did I...Did I ever even apologize when I knew it wasn't his fault? Did I ever, even once, say that I was sorry?
The silently streaming tears turned into heart wrenching sobs.
A few minutes pass. The sobs let up, and Motoko felt vaguely better, but only by a little. This was certainly not the first night she had spent like this. The last two years had been difficult. By day, Motoko was a happy student at the famous Tokyo University, and lived in the Hinata Inn with the friends she had made in the last 6 or so years, who had become a sort of surrogate family for her. She trained diligently in the sword arts and in her academic studies, and had the best friends a girl could have. It seemed that nothing had changed in the last two years between the residents at the Hinata Inn. At night, however...the night brought all the thoughts, regrets, and all the emotions she kept from the others.
Keitaro...Why did you do these things for us...for me? Who was I, a stubborn tomboy who never listened or trusted or forgave...Who was I to beat you as if you were nothing? Why could not I see it? You ended up being everything to me, and how did I repay you? With constant and senseless beatings because I couldn't cope with the changes happening around me... Two years ago, these thoughts would've made me feel weak and that I was worth nothing...You showed me how wrong these thoughts are, whether you knew it or not... I owe you so much...
Motoko lay back down in her futon. She had no idea what time it was, only that it was late and that she needed rest.
Keitaro...I... know it's too late for me, but...thank you. You mean more to me than anything, thought I doubt you are aware of it. She smiled, thinking of that cute face he makes when he has no idea what the heck is going on. She even managed to let out a soft giggle.
I love you, Keitaro. I know you love me too, just not the way that I want you to. I know it's time to move on, but...The smile on her face faded away again...I can't. I'm sorry, but I can't.
With one last breath, she closed her eyes and yawned. She took comfort in knowing that at least in her dreams, Keitaro will always be hers, though in the morning she knows she must return to what she thought of as the harshness of reality. She hugged her spare pillow, making believe it was the body of the man she knew she loved but can never have. But for now...
You are all mine, Keitaro. If only in my dreams.
The sun was still not quite up when Motoko awoke. Years of training had made her body know exactly when to wake up every morning for her early morning training regiment. This morning, like many mornings recently, Motoko decided to linger in the warmth of her futon. She had had the most wonderful dream, and decided to relish what she could remember of it before getting up. She closed her eyes. Last night she dreamt, like the night before, and the night before that, of Urashima. It wasn't always the same dream, but they always had similar themes. The running theme of course was that Urashima confessing his undying love to Motoko.
She sighed and a blush came to her cheeks when she thought of the...actions that Keitaro had performed for her. To anyone other than Motoko, the "actions" Keitaro performed would've been deemed suitable for a simple PG movie. Of course, having no real sexual experiences, these simple but romantic acts made Motoko smile embarrassedly into her pillow.
In a small clearing in the woods, Motoko and Keitaro were in the midst of a duel. Blow for blow, strike after strike, neither could find an opening to which they could claim victory. Somehow, Motoko managed to trip over some sort of log (hey, who care if this is a plot hole, in a dream anything can happen). Keitaro, being the strong and honorable warrior Motoko fantasized of, noticed her trip and managed to catch her just in time. Motoko was completely helpless in his arms. Keitaro, with the chiseled jaw he had managed to acquire in the course of her dream, looked deep into her eyes. He leaned forward and kissed her deeply. And he would whisper in her ear, making her melt inside, "I love you, Motoko. Now and forever."
Motoko blushed deeply when she thought of the final bits of her dream. Over and over, she replayed it in her mind, and relished every bit of it. It was like it really happened. In her mind she could feel the warmth of his arms around her, his moist lips and tongue with hers, the feeling of his breath in her ear. A small beam of sunlight had managed to creep in to her room and onto her face. She decided to linger no longer. She changed from her night clothes to her traditional kendo outfit and went onto the roof.
While Motoko trained relentlessly on the roof, the first signs of life around the Inn slowly came to surface. Shinobu had just left her room to begin making breakfast for the other residents. Su began her work on her newest Mecha-Tama or some other potentially dangerous invention. Kitsune had not stirred one bit.
She's probably sleeping off however much she ended up drinking last night. Kitsune should really learn to keep her drinking in check, Motoko idly mused.
The last two residents of the Inn Motoko tried not to think of. Keitaro and Naru had taken to sleeping in the same room, and the thought of them like that made Motoko uncomfortable for obvious reasons. She continued with her training.
Life was passing normally at the Inn. From an outsider's point of view it would seem that nothing had changed in the last two years. Life would pass quietly enough, with enough explosions and flying Keitaros that the equilibrium that Keitaro had seemed to have brought over 5 years ago hadn't changed at all. This is, however, only on the surface. Motoko knew she wasn't the only one who wasn't completely over Keitaro. It wasn't that they harbored ill feelings for either Keitaro or Naru. Only that their hearts had not quite moved on and each resident still had their little quirks to momentarily catch Keitaro's attention, though they knew that their efforts would be fruitless. No one really wanted to break Keitaro and Naru up; it was undeniable that the residents had found a sort of happiness in the current situation. It was sad for most to think of how Keitaro was just out of their grasp, but everyone had their special moments between themselves and their manager. Motoko's special time with Keitaro is that they would spend many afternoons training him. Shinobu would make Keitaro's favorite meals, and when Keitaro would offer helping out with the cooking or the clean up, that was their time. Su would use Keitaro as a human guinea pig for whatever crazy invention she needed testing. Kitsune was just Kitsune, and spent her time teasing Keitaro, with the occasional shared bottle of sake on a lazy afternoon. One thing that had changed for the better was that Naru had finally become comfortable with herself and Keitaro, as well as his relation with the others, so that she finally was able to trust him when he did spend time alone with them. Everyone knew and complied with the fact that Keitaro was taken, so they never made any real moves on him. Only the little things so they could be acknowledged by Keitaro that they were just as special and dear to him as Naru. Naru didn't even really feel the need to beat him for his klutziness or when he came into the bath when all the residents were occupying it. She beat him just for fun. For the most part, Motoko was the same. She was never really mad at him for his escapades; it was just plain fun to send him into the stratosphere. And since Keitaro was nearly immortal and didn't particularly mind being beaten, there was really no need to stop.
Motoko had spent nearly two hours training on the roof, and she decided it was time to get cleaned up. She went back to her room, put away her sword and grabbed some clothes, and went to the bath for a quick soak.
Motoko found herself alone in the bath at this time of morning. The steam from the natural hot springs was thick today. It had been a relatively cool summer, and autumn was soon to come. After completing the task of cleaning herself, she took a few moments to relax. Her breathing became long and deep. The slight breeze made the leaves dance on the wind, and Motoko marveled and the simple beauty of nature. Her mind became peaceful, and her thoughts drifted in her tranquil state. All the memories she had accumulated at the Hinata Inn slowly resurfaced, of events nearly forgotten, of events she laughed at in retrospect, and of events she once hated herself for but now made her stronger. She sighed.
It must be breakfast time by now.
She heard that sound of footsteps around the Inn, all heading for the kitchen. She lifted herself out of the bath. She unwrapped the towel from her body. She looked at herself in the mirror of the changing room. She stared at herself, from her face and hair, which had grown almost long enough to reach her shoulders, and down to her breasts, which had grown to an ample size in the last few years.
I think they've finally stopped growing. Spirits know they're big enough. I wonder...if Urashima ever thought abou-
She grabbed and shook her head violently.
Aagh! Don't think such perverse things!! she scolded herself.
But then she smiled. You'll turn into Urashima at this rate.
The smile disappeared again. But still...I wonder if he would find me...attractive.
She gazed upon her figure again, and let out another sigh. It's best not to think of these things. The day just started and you're already putting yourself down. Let's get dressed. The other residents' good spirits will get you in a good mood again.
Motoko put on her "You can Fly" tank top and a pair of khaki shorts. It was Sunday and there would be no school. When she arrived at the kitchen, she noticed Su and Kitsune were already at the table, while Shinobu stood over the stove. Hearing footsteps, Shinobu turned her around to see who it might be.
"Good Morning, Motoko-Sempai! Breakfast will be served in just a moment!"
Shinobu turned around to finish her cooking. Motoko smiled to herself.
Still as cheerful as ever, I see. She seems to really come alive when she sets herself in a kitchen.
Motoko looked at the table. Kitsune had her head on the table and in her hands. She looked up at Motoko with half open eyes.
"Is there really any need to explain at this point," Kitsune asked.
Motoko just shook her head exasperated.
"Ugh, I'll never drink another drop of sake as long as I live!" she exclaimed to everybody and nobody and put her head back on the table. No one paid attention to her new resolution. She said this after every bad hangover. After a couple of aspirins and a catnap and by afternoon she'll be drinking up another storm.
Amidst all this, Su stood on her chair hunched over some spare piece of robotics. Next to her, was a large plate of bananas, most of them already consumed at leaving only the peel behind.
Motoko took a seat next to Su. She peered over the bowl of bananas and studied whatever piece of machinery Su was tinkering with.
"What might you be making now, Su-chan?"
Su, without looking up, grabbed a banana, and peeled it with her teeth. She shoved the whole thing in her mouth.
"Dish bee da muhverboart hov mah noo Meka-tammago, seffenteenph edishun!" she said amidst chewing. She swallowed the last of her pre-breakfast snack. She looked up and smiled at Motoko. She jumped on the table and pointed out to nowhere in particular.
"It's gonna be the bestest one yet!!!" she announced excitedly and started bouncing off the walls.
"Just give me a heads up before you grab me for testing, ok?"
A slightly drowsy Keitaro entered the kitchen, followed by a Naru.
Motoko looked at the two and sighed within her mind. And so another day begins...
A/N: Well, here it is. The first chapter of my story. Forgive me if you find it a little too angsty, I promise it will not stay this way. A few things before I go:
I am a new writer, and have not developed my own real definitive style yet. If you have written a fanfiction and think that I may have borrowed some sort of way of telling the story that you use or some minor thing about the way my story is presented, tell me. I've read a lot of fics, mostly Keitaro/Motoko pairings, and I may of used things from them and not realized it. If you believe such is the case, please put a review up and tell me what fic it was that you think I stole something from and what it was in particular that I may of used. If I agree with your claim or even if I just read that fic, I'll be sure to give my thanks upon my next chapter, even if it's a purely inspirational/hero worship kind of thanks.
This will not be a Keitaro/Motoko pairing. Though I constantly wished for these two to get together in the real series, and my obsession with it through fanfiction, this will not be so in my fic. Rather, I want to give a shot at presenting Motoko's life after the fact. I want, at least within my own mind, to show Motoko, that although Keitaro is and always will be an important part of her life, she can and will move on and find happiness on her own, or maybe find someone else (???). I've not quite decided. I plan to make this a pretty extensive fic. But it will not be a Kei/Mot. But I plan to do my best with it, so please don't stop reading this fic if you might've thought it would be that particular pairing.
Uh, finally, maybe this is self explanatory, but any U2 afficiandos out there, this isn't a song fic. Hardy har har, I'm just so clever.
So, uh, please review and give me advice for the story or if you want, you can stroke my ego and tell me how awesome this is. The next chapter might take a little bit as school is starting up again and I'm not sure how long it'll take for me to get another update going. So thank you in advance and I hope you enjoyed my work. Oh also tell me if you think the characters are too OOC and such. Even Motoko, but I probably won't pay too much attention to those comments. I decided that she changed a lot during the series and I am just continuing the progression of change, and therefore she's a little different now than from the beginning of the series.... Ok now I'm done talking.