Author: Blue Eyed Canadian Author PM
Hinata has always loved Spring. It holds such tender hopes, and memories. She only wishes that she could share them withRated: Fiction K+ - English - Hinata H. - Words: 1,636 - Reviews: 5 - Favs: 6 - Follows: 1 - Published: 05-10-06 - Status: Complete - id: 2932671
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Hinata stood under the porch's roof, looking out at the grey, rainy world outside. The paving stones were coloured dark, and the grass was a deep and peaceful green. Hinata took a deep breath, letting the fresh, clean scent of Spring rain fill her up, then sighed the air peacefully out.
Hanabi sat cross-legged next to her, absently tracing patterns in the old rich oak panelling. She didn't love her sister. She didn't even particularly like her. And yet, here Hanabi sat, occasionally looking out into the stone garden, or up at her weaker older sister with something akin to peace in her expression.
Hinata liked Spring. Everything was dreary and muddy for a while, but, after time passes, new green sprouts would grow up out of the mud. All it took was time, and luck. Hinata smiled. And perhaps a little confidence. She thought to herself.
Hinata could remember when she was young, and still had childish innocence and spunk; she had run out into a spring shower like this one and danced in it. Her mother had laughed at her. Her cousins had laughed at her. Her Aunts and her Uncles had laughed at her. So much time had passed, she couldn't remember whether their laughter was hurtful or not. All she could remember was the water hitting her skin, the beauty of her awkward and childish movements, and the fierce joy that she couldn't even understand.
"Hanabi, have you ever danced in the Spring rain?" Hinata asked quietly, not wanted to disturb the other family members who stood on their own different sections of the porch, also watching the rain.
"No, that's a stupid thing to do. You would just get sick if you did." Hanabi retorted, sneering at her sister. Only Hinata would ask questions about stupid things like dancing in the rain.
Hinata smiled gently, watching the new tender leaf buds on a tree's branches quiver and shake. "If you danced in a Winter rain, then you would get sick. Perhaps even in a Fall rain. But not a Spring rain, or a Summer. It's far too warm at this time of year to get sick." Hanabi snorted, moving to stand up.
"Well then, why don't you go dance in the rain and prove me wrong?" The younger girl challenged sarcastically as she stood to leave.
"Only if you will dance with me."
Hanabi stopped in her steps, turning to give her elder sister a disgusted and exasperated look. "What a pathetic joke. What kind of stupid idea is that? Why in the world would I want to dance with you, especially in the rain!" Hanabi scoffed and started walking towards the door inside where the heaters would be, snug under the blankets.
Hinata stood looking out at the quivering tree branch for a few moments more. Her mind was blank, and she didn't think as she walked out into the downpour. There were a few murmurs of surprise from startled watchers, and Hanabi turned back at the doorway to look.
Hanabi looked confused, and Hinata knew that she didn't understand. That's alright. I will dance this dance alone. Lifting her arms for balance, Hinata took a few steps, familiarizing herself with how slippery the ground was.
Hanabi noticed when her sister closed her eyes, and stood frozen watching the graceful sweeps of her arms, the delicate movements of her legs and her precise, barefooted steps. A time or two, Hinata slipped or faltered, but she turned it into a new part of her dance, letting herself drop to the ground only to rise softly back to her feet.
Hanabi was conscious of someone coming out onto the porch and sliding the door she'd been holding open, closed, but she didn't want to look away from Hinata's sad, awkward, childish dance. She only registered a white shirt and black hair, which she didn't bother to try to place. Hinata's dance was so open, so fragile, that Hanabi knew she had to watch. She would never see anything like it again.
Hinata let her body move any way that it wanted to. She didn't bother to think, other than to remember where the muddy spots were. Her arms were pale flashes to her eyes, her legs bent, held a delicate position for a second or two, before she spun out into the next sequence. No move was ever the same, but her feet were light and tapped out rhythms that fit the pattern of the rain hitting her head and shoulders.
She stopped and threw her head back, closing her eyes again. She relaxed to feel the rain hitting her closed eyelids, the cool air against her wet clothes, and the full-body shivers that ran deliciously over her, reminding her that she was alive, and this was real.
She heard steps coming closer, and felt a hand on her shoulder. Hinata opened her eyes to look up at a grey sky, blinking as a raindrop landed just below her eyelid.
"Hinata. Come inside now."
Hinata looked up into solemn white eyes, and remembered that she was being watched by quite a few of her family members. She was only wearing a loose white yukata which had been soaked through by the rain, and immediately began to feel her embarrassment. I must have looked so foolish... But... it was worth it.
"Alright, Father." Hinata agreed, and Hiashi wrapped a strong arm around her shoulders, pulling her close for warmth. All of the Hyuuga over the age of six knew it was rude to stare, and the ones who were younger were all trying to escape out into the rain to dance "Just like Hinata-sama!"
Hinata could still feel them watching her though, unable to tell if they approved of such a scandalous display or not. Her father steered her under the porch and past Hanabi, whose face was unreadable, into a near-by sitting room where one of the heaters was located. Neji was there, a mug of something steaming on the table and a towel ready for her when she sat down.
Hiashi let go of Hinata so that she could slide her legs under the heater-blanket, and she took a quick sip to scald her tongue and tell her that it was hot chocolate. Hanabi slid the door closed behind them and sat down on Hinata's left, with her father across from her and Neji rubbing down her hair with the towel.
"Your dance was beautiful, Hinata-sama. I am glad that I got to see it." Neji commented as he rubbed at her bangs, allowing her to hide her blush behind the towel. Hanabi made no comment, face still blank. Hiashi simply drank from the half-empty cup he must've had before coming out to get Hinata, ignoring his own wet hair and clothing.
"You should go back to your room and change, Hinata. Your drink will be here when you return." Hiashi commented idly, disguising an order behind his nonchalance. Hinata bowed to her father and rose, realizing that her father was right and unless she changed out of her wet clothing not even the heater could help her get properlywarm.
Hinata stood for a moment, undecided. The fastest way to her room would be to go out onto the porch and across to the hallway beyond, but that would mean facing her family. She jumped a little when Neji stood up behind her.
"Shall I escort you to make sure you don't run off to play in any puddles, Hinata-sama?" Neji offered, a strange ghost of a smile lingering over his lips. Hinata blinked, and then blushed once again.
"Th-that would be very kind of y-you Neji-nii-s-san. Thank you." Hinata mumbled, crossing to the door. When she opened it, the cool air rushed in, bringing the sweet smell of newly grown things and the laughter of children. She and Neji stepped out onto the solid oak planks, watching the dozen-or-so children jumping and dancing and getting very dirty while they played and laughed in the garden.
Hinata smiled as she and Neji walked, watching the few children who were dancing awkwardly on their own and occasionally bumping into plants, or each other. Others were chasing one another, while the larger part of them had joined hand and ran in a circle until they got too dizzy and fell over. Their parents stood near-by, along with jealous older brothers, sisters and cousins who were too 'mature' to play in the mud.
Hinata glanced at Neji, and felt her heart soften a little when she noticed the ghost had become a true upwards quirk of his mouth. She giggled, then allowed Neji to precede her into the hallway as she paused for a backwards look. The quiet, secret smiles of the parents, the envious pouts of the elder children, and the joy of thescreamsand laughter filled her soul. Neji waited patiently and Hinata stared off into space with a quiet smile, her heart filled with peace.
She loved Spring. Beautiful, happy little seeds could grow in the Spring rains. All they needed was time, luck, and a little bit of confidence. Hinata smiled at Neji and gave her cousin a quick hug before she ran off to her room. If she didn't hurry, her hot chocolate would get cold.
Later that night when the rain was beginning to abate, a door to the porch slid open silently. A small, black haired, white eyed eight year-old girl wearing white clothing walked self-consciously out into the middle of the muddy garden, and began to dance.