WHEN THE ICE MELTS
If you have read my other fanfics, you should have noticed that I always
include the character's silent thoughts in first person context. This time,
however, I'm not going to do it. It's just too taxing, changing colours,
allocating diff. brackets, thinking in each characters point of view etc.
In this fanfic, I will still include the character's feelings, but mostly
in third person context this time. I promise you, this fanfic will be as
fun as the rest.
"HEE YAH!" Fuuko gave a cry of triumph as she executed a high kick, then
doubled a snap kick, sending her opponent, a heavy boned young man,
sprawling to the ground. As Fuuko calmed herself to reduce the adrenaline
level, a burst of applause and cheers greeted her. She knew that compared
to the big sized adversary, Fuuko was, although lithe and athletic,
considered small and petite. And she defeated him without even using the
fuujin. This made the victory even sweeter. But one small fact marred her
conquest; he was a martial arts student, and she was the instructor. She
was suppose to win.
"Now do you all understand how to deliver a high kick and snap kick ?"
Fuuko faced all her students. A chorus of "Yes" echoed back, and Fuuko was
inclined to end the lesson. After a long day of boring classes, a session
of workout was indeed refreshing, but having to coach and look out for her
juniors was tiring, if not exhausting. Taking a peep at the hall clock,
Fuuko made a few light quick calculations in her mind, and decided that she
had indeed been instructing for 2 whole hours, and declared the lesson
After a relaxing shower, Fuuko gathered her perspiration-soaked track suit
and dumped the whole pile into her bag, and walked out of the gymnasium.
Waving 'good-byes' to a few classmates, Fuuko made her way back to the
hostel. She was dead-beat, and she would much prefer a personal training
session. She hadn't even eaten since that afternoon, and lunch was only a
soggy sandwich. However, coaching the martial arts class was a price she
had agreed to pay. Now, she was thoroughly regretting her choice. Fuuko
had tried to enroll in Tokyo University, a prestigious Japanese college
with a course in meteorology that she was extremely interested in. Her
marks, though, were a different story. However, the school had a long
history of brilliant sporting achievements, including martial arts, and the
administrative board had allowed Fuuko to enlist, on account of her skills.
However, not only did she have to join the school's official team, she also
had to coach her juniors. 'Well, I can't step-down now, not when it's so
late in the term. How I wish I had Mikagami's money and brains.' Fuuko
muttered. Tokiya, whose scores were astounding, was welcomed into the
university with open arms. The fact that he was rich did not hurt one
little bit. Although the school would have liked Mikagami on the martial
arts team, his previous 2 qualifications were enough to ensure he could do
pretty much as he wanted. As though to prove a point, Tokiya suddenly
appeared at the far end of the field, just across Fuuko's path. She waved
fervently to her old friend, but he just regarded her with an icy glare,
then acknowledged her presence and greeting with a slight nod of his head,
and stalked off in the other direction.
'What a way to greet an old buddy. Maybe I should have left him to bleed or
burn to death in the Uroubatousatoujin.' Fuuko was rather peeved by
Tokiya's cold accosting, and the fact he was headed to the private housing
estate, where the wealthier students had their private apartments with
their personal housekeepers. Being prosperous, it was obvious Tokiya had
property in that section of the campus. Fuuko just shrugged and ignored the
retreating figure as she continued her path back to her lodgings. Then,
suddenly, by the pale moonlight, Fuuko made out 2 dark shadows, and
recognized the tall, muscular one belonging to her boyfriend, Raiha. The
latter was not a student in Tokyo University; he attended a nearby private
college for business students. 'That sweet Raiha, coming all the way here
to see me on the middle of the night.' All of Fuuko's weariness and
exhaustion disappeared immediately. She ran the remaining distance towards
her boyfriend, but what welcomed her arrival was not at all as she
expected. The other shadow morphed into a female figure, and to Fuuko's
mirth, saw that it was Yokko Sashima, a rival student from her course. It
didn't help that Yokko was beautiful as she was intelligent, and what made
matters a whole lot worse was that Yokko was sobbing with all her heart, as
she held on to Raiha, preventing him from walking away. Under normal
circumstances, Fuuko would have seized the opportunity to make fun of her
nemesis, but when Yoko was crying on Raiha, Fuuko had no urge to laugh at
all. She had always prided herself as being able to totally trust Raiha,
whom she was certain was absolutely faithful to her. But Fuuko was dead
certain something was going on now, and she didn't like it one single bit.
Reminding herself to keep her mind open and listen to all explanations,
Fuuko ventured nearer to the couple. "Raiha, Yokko? What's going on?".
Raiha saw his girlfriend, and he appeared shocked and guilty. He was about
to say something, but Yokko beat him to it. She launched herself onto
Fuuko, grabbed her arm, and begged, "Fuuko, please, I beg of you. Please
let me win this time. I need Raiha, I just can't live without him!" Fuuko
directed an angry glare at Raiha, who just reddened and looked away.
"Fuuko, you are so popular in the school, and you score so well in
meteorology class. I know that I can't compete with you in martial arts,
but please, I really, really need Raiha. Please, let me have him. He
refused to be with me unless you allow him too. He loves me so much, but he
doesn't want to break your heart. Please, I'll do anything for you, just
release him." Yokko burst into hysterical sobs once again. Fuuko was
stunned. She never expected Raiha to betray her. She was convinced that
this crying scene was just another of Yokko's little schemes to upstaged
her. So, she put herself directly in front of Raiha, and demanded an
"Raiha, is Yokko telling the truth?"
"Fuuko. I." Raiha could not continue. But he did not have to. Fuuko could
see the truth in his eyes. He loved Yokko, her enemy, not her. Fuuko wanted
to scream, to cry, to lash out at someone, but with steel like
determination managed to prevent that. Instead, she just waved one hand at
the wailing Yokko and said to her ex-boyfriend, "I can see that Yokko
really loves you. And since you love her back, I can't keep you anymore.
I'll be the third party. It won't be fair to any of us."
"Fuuko, you mean.' Raiha could not believe his ears. He had not expected
Fuuko to give in so willingly. For a second, he was upset that he was only
worth so little in Fuuko's heart, so low that she could just give away,
just with a hand gesture. But Fuuko's next words made his heart burst with
sorrow and regret.
"Yes, I mean it. I don't deny that I love you very much, but I believe that
loving someone is to ensure that person's happiness. And since I can't give
you that, I should, no, I must allow someone else to shoulder that
responsibility. Yokko is a rival of mine, but if you, the best person in
the world, loves her, then there must be something good about her that I
have not noticed. Well, I just wish you all the best. "
"Fuuko, I really don't know what to say." Raiha was stumped for words. He
knew that she had many good qualities, but showing sensibility and
affection was new to him.
"You don't need to say anything, Raiha. I know you feel guilty, but I give
you permission not to. You literally saved my life more that once, and then
for 2 years, made me the happiest girl alive. I can't thank you enough.
Leaving you is the very least I can do. Bye." Fuuko ended this conversation
abruptly, for although her face betrayed no emotion, and she had opted for
a calm, cool and collected exterior, her heart was already bursting with
sadness and grief. She turned away from the couple, and jogged towards the
hostels. She did this so that there would be no witness the her tears, now
pouring uncontrollably out of her eyes, and now her face. If she had turned
back for a last glimpse at Raiha, the poor girl would definitely have
noticed a malicious grin on Yokko's face. Fuuko couldn't believe it. In one
split second, her perfect world had crumbled, leaving only debris and
rubble for her. She had never known heartache this painful before. "Now I
know why Mikagami refused to love again. To go through all this pain
another time, would surely tear the heart and mind." Fuuko mused through
her misery. Around her, the wind swirled around the buildings, as though
mourning for her lost love. The skies darkened as rain clouds gathered; a
storm was in the brewing, as the angels cried for Fuuko. Raindrops came in
the from of a fine drizzle, but Fuuko didn't care. She just concentrated on
blindly running through the rain, as though to wash away all her sorrow and
Tokiya saw and heard the whole scene through from a short distance away. He
didn't have to guess how Fuuko was feeling. In fact, he had passed by Raiha
and Yokko on his way home, but they were too engrossed to notice him. He
had turned back after seeing Fuuko advancing on the couple. He sighed;
Fuuko did not deserve that kind of treatment. She was too kind, and the way
she reacted was a surprise to him. He had thought that she would have
beaten Raiha up, or at least screamed at him. Tokiya was impressed by
Fuuko's self-control and sacrifice. "That Raiha deserves a beating," Tokiya
spoke to himself, "Not Fuuko or Yokko. Still, I wonder if Fuuko knows that
Yokko planned this whole set-up tonight?" Then, shaking his head, Tokiya
decided to mind his own business and pushed this incident to the back of
his head. By the time he returned to his own apartment, the weather outside
had worsened into a full-blown storm. Putting his damp clothes in the wash,
Tokiya slipped on a long sleeve shirt and pants, and heated up the cold
dinner awaiting him, prepared by his part time housekeeper, Mrs. Miyuki
Taketo, who was also the nanny that brought him up. While waiting for his
food, Tokiya wandered towards the full glass doors that opened to the
balcony. On a cool and serene day, he would take his meals overlooking the
city. On rainy and blustery days such as this night, he would much rather
prefer his dinner indoors. It was not that Tokiya disliked water, oh he
loved it. After all, it gave 'life' to his ensui, which was the most
precious item he owned. But, he much prefer admiring water in a fountain,
pond, bath tub, as snow or the means for ice-skating. Rain was only to
nurture the surroundings. As he was letting the pale blue French curtains
down, he noticed something that made him shudder slightly with distaste.
Glancing from a 25th floor elevation, down to a 20 stories high office
building, he made an observation. 'That gargoyle on top of that building
looks pretty ugly. Why haven't I noticed it before? Oh well, it's not my
building, so why should I care?' With a shrug, Tokiya let down the rest of
the curtain, obscuring the mysterious figurine, and went to take a rest.
Tokiya woke up suddenly to the roaring of the wind outside his window.
Grabbing the alarm clock, and taking a look, he just couldn't believe that
it was only 3am in the morning. For no reason at all, he had spent hours
turning and tossing in bed, unable to sleep. He did not and never suffered
from insomnia, and he usually slept best during cold weather. The worse was
yet to come. When he finally managed to sleep, he was plagued with
nightmares about Raiha dumping Fuuko, the same picture repeating over and
over again in his head. 'This should be Fuuko's nightmare, not mine. And
why am I feeling so sorry for that tomboyish brat!?' Tokiya vented his
frustration on his pillow. Then, simmering down and realizing it was not
the pillow's fault, Tokiya put his headrest away and went to the kitchen
for a drink. After taking a dose of hot, cooling tea, Tokiya felt much,
much better. However, the weather outside was anther story. The wind was
still howling its lungs out, (if it had any), and rain pelted repeatedly
against the windows. He walked to the glass door leading to the balcony and
raised the French curtains, wanting to see the extent and strength of the
wind. Frankly, he was rather amazed at the storm's strength. Wind howled
like mad wolves, rain felt like fine needles, trees bent to almost double
their height, lightning and thunder raced across the sky, claiming it as
their own. 'It's really uncanny that such a big storm occurred when Fuuko
was upset. Could that mean that Fuuko's emotions could affect her fuujin
without her control? Or is it just a coincidence?' Tokiya was puzzled, but
could not come up with any answer. Resolving to speak to Fuuko the next
day, or maybe a week after because of that touchy incident, Tokiya let down
the curtains once more. Then, something caught his attention. 'I swear that
hideous gargoyle was on the left of the building just now. Yet, it's on the
right now! How can that be?' Tokiya was again troubled by another
perplexity. As though answering his question, a streak of bright lightning
lit up the area, giving him a clearer look at the Gothic statue. To his
surprise and then shock, he realized that the 'gargoyle' was a person and
not a sculpture. Taking in the drenched clothing and colouring, Tokiya just
shook his head at the folly of his 'gargoyle'. Suddenly, memories of the
previous night flashed before him, and came soaring back. With a frown, he
took a closer look at the small figure, and confirmed his suspicions. As
though agreeing with Tokiya, the skies then boomed it's approval, which
rang out through the night. After the thunder had finally ceased, Tokiya
just sighed deeply as he looked through a wet glass plane at the distorted
figure of his dear, old, heartbroken friend, Fuuko.
Tokiya was surprised at Fuuko. He knew she would be sad, devastated even,
but he knew her to be a sensible, tough and never-mind-that-boyfriend-
dumped-me,-I'll just-find-another-one type. Glancing at the clock, then at
the small figure of Fuuko, Tokiya contemplated, "She has been drenching
herself for 5 hours now. What has got into that thick skull of hers? She
will surely freeze herself to death!" Recca, Domon, Yanagi or Koganei
would immediately rush to Fuuko, and drag her to shelter if necessary. Then
they would most likely go find Raiha and beat the latter up. But Tokiya was
different. The one thing that separate him from the other Hokage members
was that he always thought things through before acting. He knew he ought
to go knock some sense into Fuuko at once, but he knew her temper. Besides,
he believed and knew that most heartbroken people preferred to grieve
alone. However, Fuuko would certainly gain a deathly cold if she continued
to brave the elements, and the other 4 would doubtlessly blame him for not
interfering. Just before the term started, Tokiya had went back to his
hometown. On learning Fuuko would be in the same college as him, Recca and
the others threatened him with bodily harm if he didn't take care of Fuuko.
Yanagi wanted to be a teacher, and a degree at a local school would
suffice. Not having a head for figures and words, Recca chose to follow
Yanagi. Furthermore, Recca wanted to be with her, and perhaps it reasoned
that Tokiya threatened the former with bodily harm if he left Yanagi.
Domon, forever after Fuuko, wanted to follow her, but even with his skills,
he marks were just too low, and he didn't have the cash. Fuuko grades were
only just below entry points, she could afford the fees, and contributing
her fighting skills paved the way for her access into Tokyo University.
Tokiya shook away the past, and concentrated on his present problem. He
wanted to leave Fuuko alone; he was never and did not want to start being a
busybody, moreover she would surely scream at him for intruding. But on the
other hand, she would obviously fall sick if he did not, and the others
would be after his head. In the end, Tokiya chose the lesser of the 2
evils. Sighing, (this must be his favourite trait), he reached for an
The elevator doors parted at the 20th story and Tokiya walked out. Fuuko
was still there, right at the edge of the building, staring mindlessly into
space, oblivious of the hard rain beating down, or the wind creating
miniature tornadoes around her. Tokiya raised the open umbrella, and walked
quietly towards Fuuko. She was just staring, at what, Tokiya didn't know,
and Fuuko wasn't so sure herself. Suddenly, water just stop pouring from
above, and Fuuko, dazed, looked up into the cool blue eyes of her friend.
"Mikagami, what are you doing here?" Fuuko blue eyes rounded in surprise.
"Well, what are you doing here? And standing in the rain without an
"I, well. It's just that. Actually. actually it's nothing." Fuuko tried to
"You've been soaking up rain water for 5 hours now, and that is nothing?"
"I have?" Fuuko wasn't too sure how much time had passed. "I guess I lost
track of time. You actually counted? How do you know?" Fuuko challenged.
She was taken aback, since she never thought Mikagami to care about
anything or anyone.
"I saw you out of my apartment windows. I live over there." A brief gesture
at the tall building answered the question.
"I know you lived around here. But I wasn't so sure where." Fuuko tried her
best to avert the main question. Too bad Tokiya was just too smart for her.
"You haven't answered my question, Fuuko. What are you doing out here
getting wet in the middle of the night? You might get really sick!" Tokiya
waited for a reply.
"It's just that I needed to cool down." Fuuko's curt response lifted
Tokiya's eyebrows as he stared down at Fuuko.
"You need to get doused in rain for 5 hours just to cool down?" This evoked
a response from Fuuko. She blushed hotly and finally decided to tell the
"I. I mean Raiha and I."Fuuko couldn't bring herself to carry on, and just
turned her gaze back to the sleeping city. Tokiya detected a sharp gleam in
her eyes that was not rain water and decided to put Fuuko out of her
"I know what happened. I passed them before I met you. When I saw you
walking towards them, I retraced my steps." He actually felt embarrassed
for eavesdropping, and expected Fuuko to start with "YOU WHAT!?", "How
could you?" or the likes. Instead.
"You saw everything? Well, so what do you think? Was I a fool to give Raiha
"You did very well. That was unselfish and I'm proud of you." This comment
finally cracked Fuuko's splintered heart. "But I love him so much! I don't
blame him for falling in love with Yokko, I blame myself for neglecting him
or. or whatever I did wrong!" Fuuko couldn't hold back her tears any
longer, and they came gushing out, like a never-ending stream. Tokiya was
helpless. He was more confident of defeating a 100 foot giant than dealing
successfully with a hysterical female. Luckily, the gale blew itself out.
"I'm being like any other silly, gushy little female aren't I?" Fuuko asked
in a small, choked voice as she dried her tears.
"No. Raiha is the stupid one, giving you up. He deserves a good beating."
"NO!" Fuuko stopped him in mid sentence. "It isn't his fault. One cannot
order love. He just stopped caring for me, that's all. Promise me you're
not going to tell Recca and the others. They'll surely try to kill Raiha.
Then Raiha will hurt them in self-defense. I don't know, but either way,
someone will get hurt, and I don't want bloodshed just because of me.
You're smarter than the others, surely you'll anticipate that. Promise?"
Tokiya looked into Fuuko's determined and resolved eyes, and nodded. She
let out a relief sigh and then returned to her original position, like a
guardian looking over her slumbering domain.
"Fuuko, it's still raining acts and dogs. You'll catch a cold out here.
Come on, go back to the hostel now." Tokiya tugged at her sodden sleeve.
"You go back first, Mikagami. I just want to stay here a little longer.
It's so calm and peaceful; it really refreshes my mind." Fuuko tired to
release his grip on her arm.
"You're soaked through and you still want to stay here?! Don't be stubborn,
Fuuko. Recca and the others will kill me if you fall sick!" Tokiya grabbed
Fuuko's arm in a gentle but vice-like grip and tried to steer her towards
the elevator. She tried to struggle, but hunger, exhaustion, the weather
and emotional turmoil took its toil on her, the last of her physical
strength faded away, and Fuuko sagged heavily against Tokiya in a dead-
faint. It took all of his training and honed reflexes to catch Fuuko as she
slid to the ground. Then circling her waist with his arm to support her,
Tokiya managed to get both of them to the elevator. A second later, Fuuko
eyelids flickered and as she struggled to regain her balance, succeeded
with a small laugh, "I blacked out for a moment there. Jeez, I'd never
thought I would actually faint into your arms. Oh, did I hurt you?" Tokiya
wound his arm tighter around her waist to brace her better, "No, you didn't
hurt me. But you sure gave me a fright." Then putting his free hand on her
forehead, came up with a diagnosis, "You're running a high fever. Why am I
not surprised?" Tokiya couldn't resist a hint of sarcasm. Fuuko, although
feverish, had her wits intact and refused to be beaten, "I thought you were
a law student, Mikagami. Since when did you change to a medicine course?"
Tokiya just shook his head and sighed, "Sick or not, your tongue is still
as sharp as ever."
Once on the ground floor, both of them stared into the heavy rainfall, and
Fuuko tried once again to release Tokiya's hold on her. "Okay, you win.
I'll go straight back to my hostel room now. You happy?!" Tokiya let Fuuko
walk 3 steps towards the campus ground before catching her as she slipped
and staggered on a puddle of water.
"You can barely walk! See what comes from spending so much time with the
elements?" Giving his umbrella to her and then hooking an arm around her
waist and another behind her knees, Tokiya lifted a bewildered Fuuko up.
Fuuko was never meant to be a weak female, a damsel in distress, and she
sure protested loudly and wildly enough, "I'm not a pathetic, sickly and
unable-to-walk female. Why don't you try this on Yokko? She'd be a much
better subject! And you're walking in the wrong direction. The hostels are
that way!" Tokiya just sighed again and replied, rather annoyed, "I know
you're a Superwoman. But Superwomen still get sick sometimes. You can't
even stand up straight. And am I the sort that will let you find your way
back in this condition? Anyway, the rain is much too heavy, and you need
some dry clothes before pneumonia sets in. My lodgings are the nearest.
This is for your own good, so why don't you cooperate?" Grudgingly, Fuuko
agreed with Tokiya's reasoning and kept her mouth shut all the way till
they reached the latter's apartment. Once they were inside, Tokiya pushed
Fuuko inside the bathroom without hesitation, and gave her some of his
clothes, including a long sleeve shirt that he had grown out of a long time
ago. At last she emerged, looking like a young girl playing dressing up
with her father's clothes. Tokiya, already dried and changed, took charge
of her wet things and directed her to the master bedroom, his room.
"This is your room, Tokiya. Where are you going to sleep tonight?" Fuuko
eyes were closing and her frame was drooping as exhaustion finally got the
best of her.
"I have another bedroom belonging to my housekeeper, who rarely stays here
overnight. Don't worry about minor issues. Aunt Yuki will chaperone you
tomorrow, and take care of your cold while I'll go get some of your
"My keys are in the bag... And my roommate." Fuuko fell asleep even before
finishing her one sentence, so tired she was and Tokiya got up to leave the
room. Suddenly, Fuuko burst out of bed, scaring Tokiya half to death. "I
have to conduct a martial arts class tomorrow, I mean today at 8am. I have
to go get ready!" She tried to reach the door, but Tokiya was blocking her
way and turned her around back to the bed. "I told you I will handle
everything. You sleep. End of story." Fuuko wanted to resist, wanted to
tell him that it was part of the school board's terms, but Tokiya's stern
tone broke down her resistance. Besides, the bed beckoned invitingly to
Fuuko, and even as she crawled under the soft down covers, her mind was
already in dreamland. Satisfied with his charge, Tokiya switched of the
lights and resolved to get what little rest he could.
Just before he left his apartment, Tokiya took the sleeping Fuuko's
temperature, and discovered it to be a burning 39.7 degree. Gripping his
ensui, Tokiya managed to cool the surrounding temperature down, but Fuuko
only mumbled something incomprehensible about being cold and snuggled
deeper into the blankets. Tokiya did not know how to handle a sick person,
he himself rarely fell sick, so he phoned his nanny and asked her to arrive
earlier. Satisfied that he tied up all loose ends, Tokiya left for Fuuko's
room to pick up her clothes. 'And take charge of her martial arts class she
was so worried about.' Tokiya reminded himself.
The roommate was not in a very good mood to be suddenly awaken by a
stranger. In fact, she was outraged.
"Who are you? How come you have Fuuko's keys? Where is she? Is she
"You must be her roommate. Yes, Fuuko's fine. She just sent me to get some
clothes of hers. She's sick and spent the night at my house."
"Your house? Fuuko would never do that. She has Raiha. You're lying!"
"In reply to all your questions, I have a private apartment in the campus.
As for Raiha, you can ask Fuuko yourself, but according to my speculations,
you would most probably hear the whole story from a certain Yokko Sashima
and her cronies. "
"Yokko?" her eyes narrowed, "I told Fuuko not to cross paths with her. Oh
well, then I guess you're telling the truth. I'll help you pack some of
Fuuko's stuff. How sick is she?"
Between packing Fuuko's luggage for a few nights stay and exchanging
formalities, Nat was shocked to find out that Tokiya was the Mikagami Fuuko
was always talking about.
"You're Mikagami? From Fuuko's high school? Well, she never told me you
were this cute." Used to adoring females and ignoring them, Tokiya just
coolly nodded back.
"Pity you're not my type. You seem to be the high class type which looks
down on everyone else. Fuuko was right, you really are quite a prissy.
Ops." Nat looked at the stone cold Tokiya, with solemnity in her face, but
laughter in her eyes.
"Yes, Nat, please continue your sentence. I'm sure Fuuko said much more
"Actually, Fuuko didn't say anything else. Here, Fuuko's stuff are all
inside. Thank goodness it's the weekends, or else Fuuko's gonna miss
classes." Ushering Tokiya out, Nat managed to prevent herself from being
forced to dictate Fuuko's list of his faults.
By the time Tokiya arrived at the gym where the classes where conducted, it
was already 8.05 am, and a crowd consisting about 20 students were already
"Is this the martial arts class?" It was pretty obvious, but Tokiya wanted
to make sure.
"Yup," a boy answered, then looking Tokiya up and down, "but I think you've
better changed out of that suit of yours."
"You're pretty cute. What's your number?" A girl batting her eyelashes held
no qualms about flirting with guys. Other shyer, but just as interested
girls started giggling to each other. Then, someone finally recognized him.
"Hey, you're Tokiya Mikagami. The dirt-rich guy from the law faculty."
"He what?." People started whispering to themselves. Here and there, Tokiya
could catch snippets of conversations, "Best student.", " Ice cold. never
had a girl.", "King of law.", "extremely popular. teacher's pet." and so on
and so forth.
"Mikagami, I thought you were good in martial arts? How come you're here?"
"Maybe because he wanted to check out Fuuko. She has a great figure you
know, and she's really very pretty." Another voice cracked in. Tokiya
decided to stop the nonsense.
"I'm sure many of you guys come here to gawk at Fuuko, but I did not. Fuuko
is sick, and I'm standing in for her."
"She is? How is she?" There was genuine concern in her juniors voices that
Tokiya was pleased to note.
"She's fine. But can we get started now? I want all of you to run through
After a long, tiring and strenuous exercise, Tokiya had them gathered
"I would just like to make it clear that Fuuko and mine methods of teaching
are different. Okay, someone tell me what has Fuuko taught you so far?"
"Oh, just basic kicks and stuff. That's about it. There are other
instructors for different weapons. Fuuko more of training our stamina and
"That's all? Basic moves and defense? That's strange. Have you ever seen
"Yes. Fuuko mainly demonstrates defense positions while parrying with an
armed opponent. Sometimes, like yesterday, she teaches how to do use a kick
or two to injure."
"So you don't know that Fuuko's specialty is unarmed combat?"
"She is? No wonder she's really good in defense without weapons. Mikagami,
how do you know all of that? You fought with her before? What's your
"Fuuko and I are from the same high school. We also fought as teammates in
a martial arts competition before. She is very good. And I am a master of
the sword." After clearing up that confusion, Tokiya started an intensive 2
hour training on his students, making them wish he'd never even been born.
Surprisingly, Tokiya enjoyed the session.
"Tokiya, I'm so pleased that you've finally got over your sister."
"Huh?!" Tokiya had just returned to his apartment after conducting Fuuko's
class, and opened the front door just as an assault was issued on him.
Verbal, that is. "Aunt Yuki, what in the world are you saying?"
"Don't be shy, my boy. I watched you grow up. You can't keep secrets from
"Aunt Yuki, please tell me properly. I really don't understand what you're
"I'm talking about that poor, little, sick girlfriend of yours. Such a poor
child. You haven't been taking care of her, have you? You really don't know
how to treat a girl right, silly."
"Fuuko?!" Tokiya was incredulous, "You think she is my girlfriend? Aunt
Yuki, she is the Fuuko Kirisawa from Team Hokage that I always mention. And
even if she is the last girl, no, female being, left on Earth, I wouldn't
be her boyfriend." Tokiya came up with the time-honored and traditional
hate line. Following that, Tokiya explained the entire situation right from
"Oh, I see now. Poor child. Men are all scum. As a friend, and a man,
Tokiya darling, you must take good care of Fuuko so as to prevent her from
losing hope in your species."
"Aunt Yuki, as a friend, I will do my best to take care of Fuuko. But do
not expect me to go further than that. You have been taking care of me
since I was a baby. You should know better. Here, I brought her some
clothes." Miyuki just shook her head at her emotionless god-son and
retreated back into master bedroom.
"One more thing, Aunt Yuki," Tokiya added as an afterthought, "Please do
not call me darling, dear, honey, sweetie or whatever when Fuuko is around.
Please." Miyuki grinned as she declined to answer.
"What the. Where am I? It's cold. What's with the wet cloth?" Fuuko acted
like a cat as she awake from her fever-induced slumber to find a damp
compress on her forehead. Brushing it away, she struggled for a sitting
"Now, dearie, the cold will bring your fever down. I know you're probably
feeling slightly chilled right now, but it can't be help. To me, you're
still warm and feverish."
Fuuko's eyes focused on a plump, matronly woman with silver streaked
grayish-black hair with a concerned expression on her face, eyes filled
"You're, you're Mikagami's housekeeper, Aunt Yoki, or something. I'm sorry
I didn't catch your name, I wasn't feeling very well."
"Don't worry about it. I'm Miyuki Taketo, but you can call me Aunt Yuki,
like Tokiya does. I'm not only his house-keeper, I was his nanny since his
"Oh. I don't know much about Mikagami, except he's an orphan whose sister
died protecting the ensui. Turns out that it was Mikagami's teacher who was
the murderer he felt that Mikagami could reach his fullest potential if he
had a goal. And who's very rich and smart, but is extremely hostile.
"Yes, Tokiya has been pretty much alone since his Mifuyu died. It was a
great blow to him. I mean which 10 year old can watch his sister die and
still live as though nothing has happened?" Then Miyuki's mood changed, and
she added with a chuckle," But you're right, Tokiya's pretty cold. Even I
have to admit that much."
"The other Hokage team members used to call him Ice man behind his back you
"Tokiya never mentioned much about the Hokage. But I heard lately that he
has a team mate who is a tomboyish and hot tempered girl studying in the
"Really? And speak of the devil, Aunt Yuki, the grouchy tomboy's friend is
Right at that point, Tokiya sauntered into the room, and with an air of
ennuyé, inquired, "Hi, Fuuko. Are you feeling better?"
"Much, actually. And as the only other female besides Yanagi and Aunt Yuki
in your life, we've been comparing notes. So, you think I'm a tomboyish
brat with a short temper?"
"Well," Tokiya retorted coolly, "It seems like your room mate knows a lot
about me. Like how prissy or high-class I am. Or."
"At least everything that I've told is the truth. What you said had no
substance at all."
"Oh really? If I've known you would be this ungrateful, I would have left
you standing in the rain all night, and then let you kill yourself in the
"Well, I most definitely didn't call you to come fetch me, or bring me back
to your house."
"Tokiya, Fuuko is a guest, and she is sick. So mind your manners." Miyuki
"If Fuuko can insult me, then I don't think that she can be that sick."
"Oh, so you really did change courses. Well, Doctor Mikagami, can you tell
me what else am I sick with? Except the obvious, which is, you!" With that,
Fuuko and Mikagami started glaring angrily at each other, willing each
other to step down. For the first time that day, Fuuko felt perfectly fine
and Tokiya felt something. The staring game would have gone on for eons if
Miyuki had not cut in.
"Children, stop this now. Tokiya, as I've said, Fuuko is sick. She needs
rest. I have a list of instructions I want you to carry out and I want you
to boil some herbal soup for her."
"You can cook?" Fuuko was surprised.
"Yes. What so strange about that?" Mikagami frosty tone had returned.
"Nothing." Fuuko had to stifle a giggle. She knew Mikagami was practically
perfect, but she never knew he could cook. Tokiya, on the other hand,
kicked himself mentally for ever getting involved with Fuuko. In fact, he
had kicked himself frequently over his decision to join the Hokage. Revenge
could have been done alone, and with less hassle. Fuuko was a pain who kept
contradicting him, even when she was at her lowest. Females normally acted
stupid, doe-eyed and drooled over him; Tokiya knew that Fuuko would rather
slash her throat and be piranha feed than be a fawning admirer. 'Well, look
on the bright side. Fuuko would be a fresh change from all those bimbos
with 2 digit I.Qs.' Tokiya tried to cheer himself up. Boy was he wrong.
"Urgh!" Fuuko struggled to swallow the vile tasting soup, "What did you put
in this?! Poison? Hey, if you wanted to kill me, couldn't you at least
choose a painless way?"
"If I wanted to kill my enemy, I would use the most painful means of death.
Drink the whole bowl of soup. Don't blame me Fuuko, Aunt Yuki asked me to
"Yeah, and you probably slipped in rat poison, pesticide or something like
"Well, don't tempt me, Fuuko. You're real lucky I ran out of pesticide
"Oh!" Fuuko exclaimed with mock surprise, "You ran out of pesticide. No
wonder I see this giant roach standing right in front of me now. Do you
think detergent might work?"
"Ah, Fuuko dear, you have just blessed me with a wonderful idea." Tokiya
played along with Fuuko's little game, "I just hope you won't live to
"Fancy giving brilliant, smart and utterly perfect Tokiya Mikagami
inspiration. It should me my honour instead." Tokiya was angry, but like
his other emotions, was surpressed. Fuuko managed to get the last say.
Tokiya just stared at the conqueror of his bed with cold, steely eyes,
contempt clearly visible. 'Fuuko's too smart for her own good.' At that
moment, Tokiya really wished that Fuuko was a bimbo. Those, at least he
could handle. Having a civil conversation was getting more and more
difficult by the minute, as Fuuko got better, and her brain, more
functional. Or so Tokiya thought. Fuuko, likewise, was really sick and
tired of Mikagami and his little innuendoes. Recca, Domon and the other
boys in her class were either too busy trying to get her phone number or
just naturally polite and nice. Mikagami was different and difficult. It
didn't help that he was also very intelligent and the equal, if not better
of Fuuko's brain cells. Fuuko didn't deny she really admired Mikagami's
calmness at a crisis, but she wished that he would loosen up a bit. He was
much too icy for her. In fact, Fuuko always felt that Mikagami always
brought his unique chill factor with him, with the ability to freeze a
party's mood to sub-zero.
2 days passed, and Fuuko got over her fever. She was after all a very
healthy girl, and with some TLC (tender loving care) from Miyuki, was back
on her feet by Tuesday. During this short period, Fuuko still managed to
charm Miyuki with her bubbly ways and quick tongue. Privately, Miyuki also
enjoyed the verbal debates that frequently occurred between Fuuko and
Tokiya. In fact, Miyuki thought that it was good to let Tokiya vent some
anger, let loose some frustration, show some, even though little, emotions.
Miyuki had years of experience and knew exactly how to lay her plans.
"Tokiya, honey, you're home."
"Yes, Aunt Yuki. And I brought Fuuko's class notes as you asked."
"A little exercise would do you fine, Tokiya."
"I run every morning and you know it, Aunt Yuki."
"Tokiya, you know I have been raising you like my very own son, since I do
not have any children. But do you know what a married woman want most?"
"Aunt Yuki, you want something. Get to the point." Tokiya was irked.
"A daughter to take care off. Buy her clothes, play doll with her, dress
her up, match make her etc. I'll get to the point. I want Fuuko to move in
"NO WAY!" Tokiya was so flabbergasted at his nanny's proposal, his voice
went up a few decibels and he actually jumped from the couch. "Fuuko is
NOT going to move in."
"Fuuko is really emotionally unstable now, and with her own mother away,
has no one to go for advice. I'm attached to that girl and I want to take
care of her."
"Fine. Go ahead and be her housekeeper."
"I'm your nanny Tokiya, and that always come first. But surely you won't
deny me a small favour. Besides Fuuko is your friend."
"Fuuko isn't a close friend. Besides, a girl and a boy living together.
People might talk. "
"You're giving excuses Tokiya. Fuuko nearly died with you. If she isn't a
close friend, I don't know what is. And you never care what others might
say or gossip. Ever."
"Aunt Yuki." Tokiya groaned. Miyuki smiled slyly and went to break the news
to Fuuko, who readily enough, though at first with a bit of reluctance,
agreed to make Tokiya's life a living hell. Miyuki knew all along that she
would triumph. Sure, Tokiya might be a fantastic law student, an unbeatable
fighter, but when it came to Miyuki's manipulations, he was putty in her
hands. To others, Tokiya might seem cold and emotionless, but to the woman
who brought him and his sister up, he was simply a frozen child waiting to
be thawed. And even frozen children needed TLC. And that was what Miyuki
gave him. She knew all of Tokiya's weak points and his fears, she had seen
him through difficult times, and most of all, she knew what he was really
like underneath, and loved him for that.
"Mikagami, I need to use the computer. Now." It had been a week since Fuuko
moved in, but the unspoken competition of wits between the 2 adults had
never ceased. Putting 2 people of totally different character together
would surely result in friction, as it did in this household. Sure, water
and wind weren't enemies like water and fire, and although both supported
life, both could also take it away just as easily.
"I'm writing a paper for the Dean. He wants it by Friday, and it's a long
"My needs are more urgent, Law-King, my paper is due tomorrow."
"Is it ever my fault that Fuuko Kirisawa is the world's greatest
"Is it my fault then, oh distinguished herald of snails, turtle and sloths,
that my professor issued the paper today?" Fuuko refused to be defeated.
"Well, I can't say much, Ms. Issuer of Nicknames. After all, you chose the
"Please, Mikagami, I need the computer urgently. Dr. Makira will kill me."
Fuuko calculated that finishing the paper took priority over insulting
"He has my support and best wishes. He is ridding the world of pests!"
"Mikagami, you know I enrolled into the college only by promising my work
will be always on time and done well. If I don't hand up my paper, I'll get
"Really?" Tokiya went on typing, "Good. Then I can have the whole house
"If you really wanted me out, you should have said so earlier!" Fuuko was
deeply hurt, "I shouldn't have stayed here anyway, at least I could use
Nat's computer." 2 jerks had made her really upset in less that a
fortnight, and Fuuko was fuming mad. Raiha had broke her heart, but Fuuko
knew it was more of a mutual thing. Mikagami had insulted her, this was
personal, and she really needed to cool down before blood flowed. Slamming
the door as she went out, Fuuko left Tokiya to the much desired computer.
Tokiya massaged his fingers to remove the cramps. He had been working on
his thesis for over an hour now, after the whirlwind had passed through. He
knew he had acted like a total jerk and was annoyed at himself, but Fuuko
somehow always manage to shatter his care-less demeanor and bring out the
worse in him. 'Raiha just hurt her, how could I have done the same? I am
such an idiot. If I don't apologize, Aunt Yuki will kill me. Besides, Fuuko
really needs the computer. I've better go find her.' Tokiya walked out of
the study and searched the rooms, but he couldn't find Fuuko. Tokiya
sighed, Fuuko must have gone out. She always disappeared after a fight to,
he guessed, cool down. Where, he had a vague idea, although never tested. A
chilled breeze wafted through the open balcony doors, and the skies were
overcast. It was going to pour again. Tokiya remembered his resolution to
ask Fuuko about her mood apparently influencing the weather. Well, he had
to put if off again since another fool had come along and created a sticky
situation. He walked over to the doors to close it, and suddenly saw
something. He frowned but closed the balcony doors, then picked up an
umbrella on his way out.
"Déjà vu all over again." Tokiya muttered to himself as he stepped out of
the elevator. Fuuko was there all right, standing at the edge of the
building, but there was a slight difference this time. She was holding and
umbrella, and the one responsible was different. Tokiya silently walked up
"What is it this time, Mikagami? I did bring an umbrella along."
"I just wanted to say I'm sorry."
"Accepted." Tokiya turned his head sharply at the easily obtainable
"Hey look, "Fuuko answered his queries, "I may be a good quarreler but that
doesn't mean I'm a bad forgiver. Besides, I guess it was partially my
fault. I just couldn't stand your care-less attitude. I've been mean, and
this is your house after all.
"So have I, Fuuko. I was bullied by Aunt Yuki into letting you stay."
Apologies and explanations exchanged, both stared at the large expanse of
land covered in rain, a soft gray mist enveloping the planes for miles
around, till the horizon. Tokiya noticed Fuuko's eyes were glazed, and
although she was theoretically staring at the scenery, he felt her spirit
had gone, he assumed, back into the past. Fuuko snapped out of her trance,
and felt Tokiya eyes on her. Raising her face, she saw the question in his
eyes and softly, almost regretfully, answered it for him.
"My element is wind, and my name actually means 'Wind Child'; Raiha's
namesake was thunder. The only time wind and thunder goes together is
during a storm. Raiha and I loved watching storms birthing, rising and then
falling. Every time it threatened to rain, we would race to the top floor
of the nearest building and admire the spectacular picture from up there.
To others, a storm is violent, but to me, it is so beautiful. First
annoyed, thunder rumbling, wind howling; then furious, thunder and
lightning, minute after minute, rain sweeping, wind roaring; what happens
next it's my favourite time. Th thunder and lighting are slight, rain is a
drizzle, wind is a moan. Just like now. A picturesque look at nature's more
dazzling wonder. It makes me so calm, so gentle, so peaceful. It's as
though it mirrors and influences my emotions. I get to vent my anger but it
also dissipates after that. This way, whenever I'm angry, I cool down
Tokiya had remained silent throughout Fuuko speech. "That's why I found you
here, isn't it? Then why don't I frequently see you from my balcony?"
"Raiha and I seldom come here anymore for our viewing. It's just that this
place holds a special place in my heart. You might think it's a little
silly, but I don't. It's the first place where Raiha and I watched a storm
dance in the skies." Both of them spoke no more after that, it wasn't
necessary. They both understood that the hatchet was buried. Finally,
"Fuuko, we ought to go home now. You have to work on your paper."
"But I thought you wanted to work on yours."
"I fully intend to, Fuuko."
"How? Sharing would just take too long."
"I guess I'll just have to dig up my laptop from some where."
"Mikagami, you mean you had a laptop all along? Why didn't you tell me?"
"You never asked."
Fuuko and Tokiya might be at logger heads, but they were perfectly sensible
people who could really work and live together once they forgave each
other. Of course, they still had quarrels and skirmishes, but they were
always minor and apologies were also always made. Since Tokiya and Fuuko
were living together, with a chaperone mostly present only in the day, it
was inevitable that the tongues would start wagging. Many rumours flew
around campus, mostly about Fuuko, but a few on Tokiya. As Tokiya was well-
respected by the teachers, rich and with a couldn't-care-less attitude,
Fuuko had to bear the grunt of the gossips. She wasn't really bothered by
the those of bystanders, but Yokko and her friends came up with some
especially meaningless and horrid ones, which hurt Fuuko a lot. Tokiya may
be emotionless, but he only chose not to display his feelings, but he sure
noticed Fuuko's mood swings. Tokiya felt that Fuuko had been hurt enough
and without telling the latter, decided to put an end to the tormenting.
Yokko's clique had boyfriends with whom Tokiya was familiar with, and he
met up with them to talk things through. The guys respected him and told
their girlfriends to stop acting like kids. Tokiya was reluctant to talk to
Raiha, as their relationship was still sore, since his loyalty laid with
Fuuko. But after a particularly malevolent and spiteful comment delivered
right into Fuuko's face, Tokiya went to Raiha's hostel and told him about
the whole mess. Needless to say, Raiha was deeply shocked that Yokko was
capable of such actions, but listened through and agreed to help Tokiya.
And so, the rumours and teasing stopped, to Fuuko's surprise, not ever
guessing why. However, Yokko was angry at being thwarted and rebuked by
Raiha and swore to get her revenge. Tokiya might have protected Fuuko for
that period, but there was no way he could shield Fuuko forever. Sooner
or later, Fuuko would be ambushed again. At least it happened only a year
and a half later.
"Fuuko?! What in the world is going on?!?!?!" Tokiya was genuinely
flustered and was actually filled with fear. This was obviously not Tokiya
in his normal self, but it was fully understandable. The house was starting
to fill with thick dense smoke coming from the kitchen, and any other
noraml human would have been screaming and panicking away. Tokiya always
acted one level calmer that others, and slight worry was his main feeling.
"Eah, erg, ahh!" came a reply.
"What? I can't understand you!" By this time, Tokiya had thrown all windows
open, the fresh clean morning air dispelling the smoke. He wasn't happy at
being awaken on a Saturday by a suffocating odour.
"I said I'm sorry. I can't breathe either, you know." Tokiya walked into
the kitchen and a impossible mess greeted him. Sinks were filled with dirty
plates and bowls, the tables were cluttered with dough, eggs, flour and
goodness knew what else. Standing in front on the oven, a tray of blackened
whatever in her hands, was Fuuko with an apron tied around her waist, a
sheepish gleam in her eyes.
"You tried to cook. I thought you gave up after the last dinner over a year
ago?" Tokiya brought up a good example of Fuuko's bad cooking ability.
Because of her eagerness to show off her supposedly brilliant culinary
skills, both of them ended up having pizza for dinner, and the kitchen
utensils burnt black.
"It's not my fault! Nat can't use the oven, and we need to bake cookies for
"Fine, then buy them! It's certainly cheaper buying a few boxes of cookies
than renovating my entire kitchen." Tokiya was piqued.
"Nat called me only at 4am this morning. The cookies had to be ready by
9am. The shops are all closed, and the nearest 24-hour shop is miles away,
and I don't have a car. I remembered watching my mother bake the most
fantastic cookies, so I thought."
"You have your mother's cooking skills," Tokiya finished, "But you don't."
"What am I supposed to do, Mikagami?" Fuuko was really, really helpless.
"Hey, I can get Nat over here to bake the cookies. It's only 5am now, we
can still make it!" Tearing her apron off, Fuuko leaped for the door, but
Tokiya just sighed and stopped her.
"You forgot another much more convenient alternative. I guess I'll just
have to lend you a hand. Again." Tokiya didn't have to mention the many
instances where he helped Fuuko solve her social problems, or stand in for
her martial art classes, taking her notes, fetching her supplies, helping
her finish an essay etc. Grabbing the apron out off Fuuko's hands, Tokiya
instructed Fuuko to sit the living room, read a book or sleep, just as long
she exiled herself from the kitchen.
By 7am, a delicious smell wafted in from the kitchen, and Fuuko just had to
sprint in, to find Tokiya lifting tray of freshly-baked chocolate chip
cookies from the oven. On the table were a nicely packed bags of vanilla,
strawberry, blackberry and other flavours. Biting into one cookie, Fuuko
exclaimed out loud,
"Where did you learn to cook like that, Mikagami? You should be a cook, not
a lawyer, this is simply irresistible!"
"Fuuko, I was born with this ability. I didn't learn. Cooking comes
naturally to some people, some have to learn, but other can't. At all."
Fuuko was so glad she had somehow managed to get the cookies she ignored
the snide comment altogether. Instead, she did the exact opposite. Flinging
her arms around a surprised Tokiya, who was so caught off guard he didn't
protest, Fuuko hugged him tightly as she thanked him for being such a great
"Mikagami, I thought you are a pain most of the time, but you're really,
really great! I love you so much!" Unaware of what she actually said, being
so relieved the cookies were baked, Fuuko grabbed the bags and stuffed them
into a carrier. "I've really got to go. I'm suppose to meet Nat at 8. Bye.
And hey, thanks again, Mikagami. Go back to sleep, you look pretty tired."
As Fuuko closed the door, Tokiya was still speechless. He hadn't managed to
utter a word ever since Fuuko hugged him. In fact, he was bewildered that
he was actually blushing, something he hadn't done since he was 10.
Shrugging, and deciding to dismiss this matter, Tokiya took Fuuko's advice
and went back to his bed.
That night, Tokiya was reading the newspapers when he heard the front door
squeaked open. Fuuko had returned from the carnival to raise money for the
university's prom night. Tokiya disliked crowded places and abstained from
leaving his house; besides, he helped, no, it should be single-handedly,
baked the cookies. He figured he had contributed more than enough.
"Fuuko, you're back. How was the carnival?"
"Um, yeah, I guess it was fun." At that short, sharp and utterly devoid of
interest reply, Tokiya looked up from his read and regarded his friend with
a icy stare.
"What happened, Fuuko?"
"Nothing much. Just sold cookies the whole day." As mentioned before,
Tokiya was only emotionless on the surface, but now he could feel that
Fuuko was upset. Walking towards her, Tokiya took in her stooping frame,
the absence of that twinkle in her eyes, mouth without a smile and knew
immediately that Yokko was involved. For the past year, he had heard first
hand from Fuuko and second hand from others, the 2 women long standing
"Fuuko, What did Yokko say?"
Mikagami, it's nothing really, just one of her silly comments. Forget it."
"You're upset, this comment must have been different. What did Yokko say?"
"Mikagami, it's really nothing. Ignore her. Please." The last stressed
syllable made Tokiya pursue the matter.
"Come on, Fuuko. Even if you don't tell me, I get it from the other
Fuuko sighed, but gave in. "If you really want to know, Yokko Shoshima said
that I was a conniving little slut that hides behind my boyfriend, you that
is, and is a disgrace to womankind. I am also, according to Yokko, a fool
that is really pathetique and wretched.
"That's not all, is it?" Tokiya assumed, "And what is with the French
"I don't know," Fuuko shrugged, "but you're right. She said much more."
"Such as." Tokiya prodded on.
"Such as I am a tomboy with no figure, rough and rude. And that it was no
wonder Raiha dumped me. And no guy would ever go to the prom with me, since
I am such a stigma, so I needn't have to bother raising money for the
"Yokko is really too much." Tokiya was outraged, but once again, checked
his feelings and only presented a bland expression.
"Mikagami, I just want to say," Fuuko sighed, "That Yokko's words doesn't
hurt me anymore. You don't have to protect me. I am used to her torments
already. They're only words, they can't hurt me."
"But you're obviously upset, Fuuko." Tokiya's eyes narrowed.
"I can't deny that I'm not. I mean who isn't. Except for you, of course.
It's just that she brought up Raiha, which she hasn't in a long time. I
wasn't used to that, I guess."
"So, you're not going for the prom, are you?"
"I guess not. Yokko was right about 1 point though, nobody has asked me to
the prom. And you need a date to go. And I won't be going at all." Walking
past Tokiya, Fuko proceeded to her room. She wasn't going to cry, no way!
She just needed to calm down. As she walked past, she felt something
holding her back. Looking back, she saw that Tokiya was actually holding
her hand. Looking into his eyes, Fuuko saw pity, concern and sadness that
paralleled her own. If Tokiya had been shocked when Fuuko hugged him, then
Fuuko was now 10 times his surprise, stunned and startled. She never knew
or suspected Tokiya could care.
"Fuuko, go to the prom. Don't worry about Yokko, I'll come with you."
"Yes," Fuuko saw that Tokiya was fighting to get his words out, "I'm asking
for a date."
"You don't have to pity me, Mikagami. I don't need." Fuuko stared at Tokiya
and trailed off, as pity vanished from his eyes and something completely
different took its place.
"I don't pity you, Fuuko. You deserve to go. You are such a generous, kind,
witty, sweet and charming girl. Any guy would be honoured. I care about you
and want you to go." Tokiya was dumfounded at himself, he didn't mean his
words the way they came out, but to his utmost amazement, he didn't mind
the way he presented them, and he actually really, deep down inside, meant
them. Fuuko felt her world had been turned upside down. 'I'm can't be
falling for Mikagami, can I?' Fuko thought. But all thoughts fell away as
she inched nearer to Tokiya, her arms automatically liking around his neck;
his at her waist, their faces mere centimetres apart. They struggled to
break the trance, but couldn't and their lips touched.
"Ding dong!" The door bell rang. That broke the spell, and the instance
their lips touched, making it a kiss, both of them turned away and what
happened was nothing more than a touch. Regaining their composure, which
was no mean feat, even Tokiya, especially him, in fact.
"Yes, may I help you." Fuuko stood at the threshold, "Raiha?!"
"Can I come in?"
"Um, yeah. Sure." Fuuko was shocked another time for that night. Leading
Raiha in, much to the annoyance of Tokiya, Fuuko wore a glazed expression.
"Fuuko, I just want to say that I was at the carnival today, and I heard
what Yokko said to you," Raiha didn't beat about the bush, "I always
thought that Yokko was such a sweet girl. I was wrong."
"You don't have to be, Raiha. Yokko is a master at acting. And I sincerely
thought she liked you."
"No, she didn't. I confronted Yokko and she confessed the whole thing was a
ploy to destroy you, Fuuko. I was a pawn in her game. I should have been
more careful. In the end, you were hurt the most. I'm sorry."
"I already forgave you right from the start, Raiha. I just can't believe
Yokko would go out with you for 1.5 years just to hurt me."
"You have no idea how much she hates you, Fuuko. I'm sorry."
"Raiha." Fuuko couldn't think of what to say. She thought she had fallen
for Tokiya, but while Raiha was professing his love, Tokiya wasn't saying
anything at all. In fact, he had disappeared to give the former couple some
"You don't have to say anything, Fuuko. Mikagami, there you are. I just
hope you'll take care of Fuuko from now on, for me."
"Raiha, what are you saying? I know Yokko must have said plenty of things,
but they aren't true. Mikagami and I aren't a couple."
"Fuuko's right, we are not a couple." Tokiya confirmed, although in both
their minds were trying to erase the intimate moments they had shared.
"I know what Yokko said were false, but only her opinions and the rumours.
The facts are all true." Raiha shook his head, "Mikagami came to me about a
year ago to tell me to ask Yokko to stop harassing you, Fuuko. Now that I
can 'see' better, it just goes to show Mikagami is worried about you,
"Don't utter rubbish, Raiha. You should be pledging you undying love for
Fuuko now. And I talked to you only because Fuuko is my friend."
"You were going to beat me up! Is that just concern?" Raiha retorted.
"You were?" Fuuko demanded. She had no idea to what extent Tokiya had
helped make her otherwise miserable life better.
"Not only that," Raiha chipped in, "He also spoke to the boyfriends of
Yokko's cronies. How do you think they managed to stop tormenting you?"
"Raiha, Fuuko still loves you. Take her away now, please. I want my house
back." Tokiya's heart suddenly felt constricted and small.
"Mikagami, I never knew you to be so rude!" Fuuko was mad, somehow.
"Well, your lover is back! You don't need me anymore!" Tokiya vented his
For the first time in 1.5 years, Tokiya and Fuuko started a really serious
quarrel. Raiha looked at the debating match, felt it was his fault and
decided to put an end to it.
"Quiet!!! Both of you!" There was silence, and Raiha continued, "Fuuko, Not
only did Mikagami spoke to all the boys, he did much more for you. Think,
all this time, he always fetched notes, solved your problems, helped in
your thesis. No other guy would do the same without a price, unless he
truly cares for you."
"How did you know?" Fuuko was surprised.
"I told you, Yokko told me some facts, which were the truth." Looking at
Tokiya, who just glared back without an excuse for his subtle display of
affection, Raiha continued, "Now that I think back, the times I saw both of
you in campus, you were always together. Fuuko might be laughing and
fooling around, and Mikagami may be solemn and cold, but you showed
affection towards each other. Whether it was just handing something over,
or saying something, there was always a touch of affection in your ways.
Even your cookies, I know you can't cook Fuuko, was done by him."
"But you love Fuuko. Why are you doing this?" Mikagami demanded.
"Because," Raiha looked Fuuko squarely in the eyes, "Fuuko told me once
that loving someone is to ensure that person's happiness. I love you,
Fuuko, and I know I can give you happiness. But I also know someone who can
give you much more happiness, what you deserve. To make you happy, I have
to sacrifice my feelings and allow Mikagami to shoulder that
responsibility. If I do otherwise, I'm being selfish, and I don't love you.
"Raiha." Fuuko was speechless.
"Don't say anything. Just listen to your heart. And you too, Mikagami. Just
now, when you asked me to take Fuuko away, I could see you were upset. But
that was good, and it confirmed my opinions. You love Fuuko, but you would
sacrifice your feelings for her to be with me. And Fuuko, you were angry
because you loved Mikagami and was mad he didn't express his feelings. The
fact that both of you started quarreling proved that you love each other,
you just have not figured out how or why yet."
Fuuko and Tokiya just stared at each other, no words between them. Raiha
took their hands and joined them. Fuuko didn't let go, neither did Tokiya.
"For the first time, I've seen Mikagami displaying some form of feelings.
If that isn't because of love, I don't know what is. You 2 belong together.
Work it out." Raiha turned and walked to the door.
"Raiha!" He turned towards Fuuko, and was pleased that she and Tokiya were
still holding hands. "We just want to thank you."
"Don't mention it. Mikagami, thank you for taking care of Fuuko when she
was at her lowest." Tokiya nodded and Raiha smiled a cheeky smile, "And you
can continue where you left off when I rang the bell. Silly of me, wasn't
it, to disturb?"
"How did you know?"
"How did you know?"
Fuuko and Tokiya phrased the same question, faces red with embarrassment.
"Oh, I somehow had another ability." Raiha answered, "As will both of you.
The ability to love."
As Raiha walked away from Tokiya's apartment, he decided to take just one
small peek, and was thoroughly satisfied. Locked in a passionate embrace
was his former love and her newfound boyfriend. Raiha sighed, his
conscience was at peace. Pulling his scarf tighter, since it was getting
chilly, the lone figure walked into the night.
Around, snow had begin to swirl in a joyous dance, a tiny breeze lifting
the little ballerinas higher and higher in happiness. Wind cannot melt ice,
but after days and nights of daily exposure, wind can reduce ice to it's
most basic and delicate form, a crystalline snowflake. And all it takes is
a little sun, a little light, a little love, to melt frost. This way, even
the hardest icicle can be melted, all is needed is wind. and love.