Author: Ghetto-Kaiba09 PM
Sequel to "The Power of Love". Yuma and Astral are enjoying the perks of parenting their new baby, Hope, but an old enemy just might return to take it all away.Rated: Fiction T - English - Drama - Yuma T. & Astral - Chapters: 9 - Words: 18,379 - Reviews: 66 - Favs: 27 - Follows: 15 - Updated: 08-29-12 - Published: 05-03-12 - Status: Complete - id: 8082819
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Without further ado, the long awaited sequel to "The Power of Love"! Thank you all who supported that fic, and sorry to keep you waiting so long!
Strips of sunlight beamed in through the attic window of the Tsukumo house. Yuma turned onto his left side in order to avoid them, but another noise kept him from returning to sleep. He registered a soft whimpering coming from the corner of the room. Smiling, Yuma tiredly leapt down from his hammock and approached the source of the sound.
"Good morning, princess." He whispered softly, reaching down a hand into the crib to pet his daughter's hair. Hope stopped her squirming and grinned up at her father, outstretching her arms and encouraging him to pick her up.
"Did you sleep alright?" Yuma questioned gently, cradling the now 8 month old little girl against his chest. Hope rested her head on his shoulder and let out a slight sigh.
Yuma laughed to himself. "Good." He responded softly. He wandered over to his bedside table and picked up the key, awkwardly slipping it around his neck and holding it between his fingers.
"Astral?" He whispered. "You there?"A brief flash of light announced the blue spirit's arrival. Astral smiled down at his partner and his daughter, the latter a tiny clone of himself.
"Good morning, Yuma." Astral said kindly. Yuma smiled up at him, rubbing Hope's back and slowly swaying back and forth.
"I'm gonna go get some breakfast. Would you like to join me?" He asked, looking up at Astral.
Astral's face lit up. "Of course."
Astral floated along behind his young counterpart, smiling as he watched Yuma sit Hope down on a blanket on the living room floor where he could keep an eye on her.
Yuma handed the little girl a colorful set of keys, which she gratefully took from him and stuffed into her mouth. He chuckled and patted her on the head before wandering into the kitchen in search of food.
Once there, he spotted a note on the countertop from his grandmother indicating she and Akari had left earlier in the morning to do some shopping. He set the note to the side and pulled out a box of cereal, emptying the contents into a bowel and sitting down at the table facing his daughter.
Astral settled himself against the wall behind Yuma, his gaze also focused on their young daughter. Many mornings began like this; a comfortable silence between two partners as they lovingly spent some quiet time alone with their child. Yuma looked back at Astral briefly and they smiled warmly at each other, neither having to say how happy and proud they were with their situation. The road getting there had been difficult, but worth it.
Yuma's smile elongated even more as he watched Hope scurry and crawl around the room on her hands and knees, sounds of delight and fascination coming from her and a rather large grin on her face. She had started crawling a month or so prior but she was still captivated by every little thing, whether it be the carpet on the floor or the fabric of the couch. Her little hands wandered over everything and her knees would turn red from the constant friction.
The tender moment was interrupted by a sharp cry and a stream of wailing howls. Yuma immediately dropped the spoon he had been holding and ran to his young daughter, whom amidst her exploration had bumped her head into the coffee table.
"Oh, Hope," Yuma whispered gently, cradling the tiny girl's head into his chest and began rocking her back and forth. "Shh, it's alright. It's alright…"Astral watched with a smile as he continued to be marveled by Yuma's remarkable parenting. Once she was in his arms Hope always instantly stopped crying. Yuma's soft voice must have been like heaven to her ears, relieving her pain and calming her. Hope's wailing had lessoned to nothing more than a hiccup as Yuma leaned away from her slightly to examine the bump on her forehead.
"You're alright, sweetheart." He said, running his thumb over her skin. "No harm done!"
Yuma kissed her forehead and tickled her chin, which sent her into a fit of giggles. Her laughter was one of Astral's favorite sounds in the whole world. Yuma set her back down on the floor and she immediately grabbed for her toys and went about herself as if nothing had happened.
Yuma and Astral watched her until Astral's eyes caught notice as to what time it was.
"Yuma," he began "Are you not going to be late for school?" He pointed a finger towards the clock on the wall and Yuma frowned.
"Yeah, I guess." He responded sadly. "I'll go get changed."Astral watched Yuma head up the stairs and he sighed sympathetically. He knew how much it hurt the young boy to have to leave Hope all day while he was at school. Yuma had still never told any of his friends about her besides Kotori for fear of the child's safety.
They became a bit suspicious when Yuma refused to take his shirt off for their swimming lesson as he did not want them to see the very evident scar stitched across his stomach. That would lead to a long list of questions that Yuma was not comfortable answering. He was able to convince his grandmother to write him a note that would excuse him from the swim meet. This alarmed his friends even more so towards the health and safety of their friend.
Yuma shrugged off the attention and explained to his friends that he had been ill for a while, and was much better now, but still needed time to heal. This was a good enough excuse for them, and no more had been said about it.
Yuma tightened the strap of his backpack against his waist as he stumbled his way down the stairs with a very noticeable frown on his face. Astral couldn't help but feel sorry for him as he watched Yuma lean down to pick Hope up and cover her with kisses.
"Don't worry, honey." Yuma whispered to her softly. "Daddy has to go to school today, but he'll be home soon, okay?" He kissed her forehead again and she whimpered as if she understood.
Yuma tried to smile through his guilt. "Astral's going to be with you all day!" He said with feigned excitement. Hope squealed with delight and turned towards Astral, holding out her arms. Astral smiled and propped the girl onto his hip, leaning down to kiss Yuma. Although the two couldn't make contact outside of the key, they were still loving with each other. They also knew it would have a profound effect on Hope if they showed affection in front of her.
"I know it's hard for you, Yuma," Astral stated. "But just try to have a good day, okay? Hope and I will be right here waiting for you when you get home."
Yuma smiled and nodded, pretending to grasp his partner's hand gently.
"Thanks, Astral. You're the best."
A brief moment of silence passed until Astral spoke again.
"Do you have everything you need?" he asked, pointing towards Yuma's backpack.
Yuma opened the bag and quickly sorted through it.
"Ah, darn! My homework's still up on my desk…"
Yuma removed the bag from around his shoulder and quickly scampered back upstairs to collect the neglected papers. He shuffled through them to make sure they were all there before his eyes caught the dresser in front of him. He smiled to himself as an idea came to him and he opened the top drawer. Inside was a neatly folded row of tiny pink socks that Yuma had purchased for Hope. Even though Astral had insisted that beings of his kind didn't get cold, Yuma still was unconvinced and bought the socks anyway, along with other assortments of accessories to protect his daughter against Heartland's ever-changing weather. Although he had washed the little pink socks many times before, they still carried Hope's scent, which brought Yuma a lot of comfort.
He grabbed one of the pink socks and stuffed it in between his homework papers before running back downstairs and shoving them into his backpack. He gave Hope another quick kiss before heading out the door and off to school.
Yuma crawled through the back of the classroom in the hopes that his teacher wouldn't notice his tardiness. He didn't, thankfully, as he was most likely used to it. Yuma was able to quietly slip into his desk next to Kotori, who was scowling at him slightly.
"Yuma, are you ever going to be on time?" She asked, annoyed.
Yuma smirked and shrugged. "Maybe. Someday."
Kotori chuckled and watched as Yuma sloppily pulled a stack of crinkled papers out of his bag.
"Did we go over any of these yet?" He questioned.
Kotori reached over and began to sort through the messy pile.
"We went over the math one about ten minutes ag-
Kotori stopped as the little pink sock dropped from the pile of papers she had been holding up. Yuma blushed wildly in embarrassment but Kotori instantly knew the reason why the tiny piece of fabric was there.
"Awww, Yuma…!" She cooed playfully.
Yuma frantically tried to shush her, waving his arms childishly.
"Kotori!" He called in a whisper. "I don't want people to see, remember?"
Kotori held the sock in her hands and smiled at Yuma teasingly.
"You brought this to school with you because you miss Hope, didn't you? Do you always do this?"
Yuma shook his head. "Nah, I just thought of it today. I really do miss her…" He trailed off sadly.
Kotori pouted at her friend and rubbed at his back tenderly.
"That has got to be the cutest thing ever!" She said. "You're such a good daddy."
Yuma blushed again and smiled sincerely at his best friend.
"Thanks, Kotori." Yuma said before quickly snatching the sock from her. "Now put it back! I don't want anyone to see!"
"Alright, alright!" Yuma stuffed the sock back in between the papers but quickly opted not to as their teacher began collecting everyone's homework. Yuma panicked and stuffed the sock into his pocket.
Within due time, the bell rang loudly and it was time for duel period, which was Yuma's favorite part of the day and the only thing that could really take his mind off of how much he missed his daughter.
Tetsuo approached Kotori and Yuma from behind and slapped the latter on the back.
"Hey, Yuma!" He called. "Are you up for a little duel?""With you?" Yuma said. "Heck yeah, I'm always up to kicking your butt!"Yuma jumped up from his chair excitedly and reached for his deck. Unfortunately, his gesticulations were a little too wild and the pink sock flew unceremoniously from his pocket and onto the floor.
Yuma's eyes widened, as did Kotori's, as they both followed Tetsuo's gaze to where the tiny piece of pink fabric had landed.
"Uh, Yuma…?" Tetsuo began, leaning onto the floor and picking the sock up. "Is there a reason why a baby's sock is in your pocket…?"
Yuma's arms were glued to his side stupidly as Kotori covered her mouth with her hands.
"Uh, um, well, you see…" Yuma stammered, his eyes aimed at Kotori as if asking for her assistance.
Kotori shook her head, unsure of what to say. Tetsuo was about to shrug off the occurrence until he noted how suspicious his friends were being.
"What the heck is going on here?" Tetsuo asked.
"That's my…um…cousin's! Yeah, it's my cousin's…" Yuma answered finally.
Tetsuo crooked an eyebrow. "Um, since when do you have a baby cousin?"
"Since, you know, she was born…" Yuma replied.
Tetsuo nodded slowly. "Riiiight. And, what was this doing in your pocket?"
Yuma's face shifted its expression about 7 times before he answered again.
"Must've gotten mixed up in the laundry…"
Yuma studied Tetsuo's face, his expression unconvinced and unchanging.
"Does this have anything to do with why you were out all that time? Because you've been acting really weird lately. You too, Kotori." Tetsuo said, pointing an accusatory finger at the both of them.
Kotori jumped, bringing up her binder and using it to hide her face. After several minutes, Yuma sighed, grabbing both of his friends by the arms and leading them in a more secluded direction.
"Alright, Tetsuo. I'll tell you. But you're never going to believe me…" Yuma began.
"Of course I'd believe you!" Tetsuo cried. "After all this Astral nonsense I'd believe anything."
Yuma took a deep breath and exhaled slowly before speaking again.
"Alright. Here's what happened…"
Annnnnd there's chapter 1! Again, sorry it took so long to get to this! I felt like I had no free time there for a while! Anyway, thanks for reading and I'll see you next chapter!