|The Meaning of Roses
Author: SilvorMoon PM
Roses can express many things, from true love to heartbreak. When their feelings cut too deeply for words, Manjoume and Asuka find ways to say how they feel without them.Rated: Fiction K - English - Romance/Drama - Chazz P./Manjōme J. & Alexis R./Asuka T. - Words: 1,574 - Reviews: 15 - Favs: 33 - Published: 02-16-07 - Status: Complete - id: 3397752
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
The Meaning of Roses
The flowers had started appearing about three months ago. Asuka always found them in her dressing room just before all of her duels, always the same arrangement: a crystal vase with a dozen perfect red roses, and next to them, a single black rose, unlucky number thirteen, lying prone and dejected in their shadow. Red roses she knew: those were for passionate love. A black rose usually meant death, but she was guessing this dark loner was meant to indicate something else. Or rather, someone else. She knew Manjoume had never given up his affection for her, any more than he had given up his predilection for that particular shade. When he'd finally been forced to retire his old black school jacket, he'd hired someone to custom-tailor him a new one to match the old. She couldn't see the color black without being reminded of him, and so this lonely rose told her as clearly as a signature who had been sending her these floral tokens week after week. There was never any signature on the card that came with it, though, only three words in black ink: I love you. She picked it up and looked at it, though it was no different from the ones she had received before. Perhaps, she thought, she should answer him.
Just friends, it said.
"Are you Asuka Tenjoin?" he asked uncertainly.
She was forced to admit that she was. The man pressed the bouquet into her unwilling hands, and she turned it over automatically to see if there was a card attached.
"No note," the man said, "but I'm supposed to tell you that these are tea roses."
"Tea roses?" she repeated uncertainly.
He nodded. "Don't know what it means, but that's what I was told. Have a good evening, ma'am."
He left. Asuka took her roses - her tea roses, whatever that meant - and put them in a vase. Then she went back to her magazine.
A moment later, she got up and turned on her computer to do a little research. A few minutes on the internet, running the words "tea rose" and "meaning" through a search engine, gave her the message. She sighed, realizing she should have known what it was all along.
I still love you.
There are lots of other girls out there...
A waiter walked up to him.
"Excuse me, sir," said the young man, "but the lady at table six sends this to you with her regards."
He placed a single rosebud on the table in front of Manjoume. Manjoume picked it up and studied it. It was white, pure and virginal, closed up tightly, never to open. He raised his eyes and looked across the room, seeking out the face he knew would be there. He found her looking back at him, her face smooth and impassive. He read in her amber eyes the same thing he'd read in the folds of the white rose.
I'm sorry, but I don't love you.
Without a word, he threw a handful of bills on the table and walked out.
And then one night, there was a rose. It was only one, a black one, its petals withered and falling away. She felt a pang as she realized the message it conveyed: It's dead. It's over. I give up. She raised a hand to touch it tenderly, as if it were the last remains of a beloved pet.
Then she noticed it was lying on a box, a small flat one covered in velvet as black as the rose-petals. She picked it up and opened it. Inside was a necklace with a rose-shaped pendant, its petals made of some black stone, perhaps jet. A single diamond glittered at its heart. A diamond, for eternity...
There was a note in the box, too. It said, Forever yours.
She considered this for a little while. Then she slipped it out of its box and fastened it carefully around her neck. The pendant, she tucked beneath her shirt so that no one else could see it, but she could feel it lying cold against her heart.
It said, Maybe I was wrong...?
A few minutes later, his immediate neighbors were roused from their morning routines to look out their windows, trying to discover what all the whooping and shouting was about.
"Hello," she said. "You're right on time."
"Hi," said Manjoume. He was holding one hand behind his back, smiling a bit sheepishly. "You look fantastic. All ready to go?"
"I'm ready," she agreed. She extended a hand, inviting him to take it. He extended his hidden hand, revealing the single red rose he had been hiding along with it.
"Here," he said, offering it to her. "Just a little something to tell you I love you."
"You already said that," she replied.