Bad News from Home

Kisshu was daydreaming in his room when Pai suddenly teleported in, causing him to look up sharply. "What's wrong?" he asked.

"I just got some news from home," Pai said.

Kisshu was worried by his tone, and asked, "This isn't going to be good news, is it?"

"No," Pai said. "Mom called and said that Aunt Anzu died."

"How?" Kisshu whispered, his voice shaking.

"She got sick," Pai said. "And she was too weak to fight it off; apparently she had just given birth a few days before she got sick."

"Given birth?" Kisshu asked, stunned.

"Yes," Pai said. "You've got a little sister now."

"How's Dad?" Kisshu asked worriedly.

"Grieving," Pai said. "You know Aunt Anzu meant the world to him."

Kisshu buried his face in his hands, and broke down. Pai went over and hugged him.

It was nearly an hour before Kisshu calmed down, but when he did, he said softly, "Pai, go tell Ichigo we're speeding up the truce plan. I killed Treehugger yesterday."

"Alright," Pai said, and teleported out.

He landed in Ichigo's room, and found her reading something. She looked up, startled, and asked, "What happened?"

"Kisshu says we're speeding up the truce plan," Pai said. "The three of us need to get home. Did you still want to come with us?"

"Yes," Ichigo said. "Did something happen?"

"Kisshu's mom died," Pai said sadly. Ichigo looked horrified as Pai continued, "He's also got a new baby sister who's being taken care of by my parents, so we need to go home. Call the other Mews, and start packing."

"Got it," Ichigo said. She picked up a cell phone and said, "Go kill Blondie while I'm calling the others; I'll tell them to meet at the Café. Keiichiro's been on board for a while now."

"Understood," Pai said, and teleported out as Ichigo dialed Zakuro's number.

When the older girl picked up, Ichigo said, "Get Mint and meet me at the Café; we're speeding things up. Today's the day."

"Got it," Zakuro said, and hung up.

Ichigo immediately dialed Lettuce's number. When Lettuce picked up, Ichigo gave her the same message. Lettuce went to call Pudding as Ichigo got shoes on, and quickly packed her toiletries into an already-full suitcase. Closing it up, she left it on her bed, grabbed her purse, and ran out the door, headed to Café Mew Mew.

She got there about the same time as Mint and Zakuro, and soon after, Lettuce ran up with Pudding. They went up to the doors, just as they were opened by Keiichiro. "Pai's done," he said. "Come in."

The girls obeyed, and saw Pai standing in the main room. He nodded to them, and then asked, "Ichigo, are you packed?"

"Everything I need is in a suitcase on my bed," Ichigo said.

"Wait, you're going back with them?" Mint asked.

"Oh right, we didn't tell you that," Ichigo said. "Kisshu and I decided we didn't want to be separated, and since my parents abandoned me, we decided I would go back with him and live with his family after we formed a truce."

"Where is Kisshu?" Zakuro asked.

"Probably still in his room," Pai said. "I received word from my mom that his mom, my aunt, died. That's why we wanted to speed up the truce plan; we need to get back and be there for Kisshu's dad- and his new little sister."

"Please let him know we're all really sorry to hear that," Lettuce said. "Keiichiro, do you have the Mew Aqua?"

"Yes," Keiichiro said. He picked up a box on the table next to him, and handed it to Pai. "This is all we have, but I think it will be enough," he said.

Pai looked and said, "Yes, that's plenty. Thank you, Keiichiro."

"You're welcome," Keiichiro said. "Good luck."

"Thanks," Pai said. "Ichigo, let's go."

Ichigo went over, and he took her shoulder, and then teleported to Kisshu's room. Kisshu was sleeping, and Pai said softly, "I'll go get your suitcase; stay with Kisshu."

"Alright," Ichigo said, her voice equally quiet. She went over to the bed, and settled down next to Kisshu as Pai teleported out. He shifted a bit, and she gently rubbed his ears. He settled back down, and Ichigo started thinking about what had led to their alliance.

~XXXX~

About two months ago, Ichigo's parents had abandoned her; they left for a trip and one day called her and told her they weren't coming back. Unfortunately, they picked the day Aoyama broke up with her for some other girl to tell her their news, so she spent hours crying. By the next day, she was a mess, and decided to skip school. Kisshu had come halfway through the day, having noticed she wasn't in school, and found her crying. He didn't even ask what had happened; he simply hugged her and told her that no matter what, he'd always be there for her. It took her a while to calm down, but she finally calmed down enough to tell him what happened.

Upon finding out Aoyama had dumped Ichigo, Kisshu told her that he was Deep Blue's human host, and asked if she would be willing to form a truce with them if he killed Aoyama. Ichigo had agreed, but told him she had to talk to the other girls too.

Eventually they managed to get everyone except Ryou on board, and as time passed while they waited for a good time, Ichigo slowly started to fall for Kisshu. They started dating, and soon they were a couple. Lettuce and Pai had gotten together a little before them, and Pudding and Taruto had done the same.

~XXXX~

Ichigo looked up as Pai teleported in with Taruto and her suitcase. "Taruto will be my copilot; you and Kisshu can stay here," Pai said. Ichigo nodded, and Pai and Taruto teleported out again.

The noise caused Kisshu to stir a bit, and Ichigo asked softly, "Kish?"

Kisshu opened his eyes, looking up at her. "Koneko-chan?" he asked.

"I'm here," Ichigo said. "Pai and Taruto are going to fly the ship, so we can stay here, okay?"

"Okay," Kisshu said sadly.

"I'm really sorry about your mom, Kish," Ichigo said softly. "The others said to let you know that they're sorry to hear that too."

"Thanks…." Kisshu said sadly. He sat up, and looked at Ichigo. She pulled him into her arms, hugging him tightly. He buried his face in her shoulder, and started crying again.

Ichigo held him until he started to calm down. The ship had already started moving, and as Ichigo gently pulled back, Kisshu asked, "We're on our way?"

"Yep," Ichigo said gently. "You look tired, do you want to go back to sleep?"

"Not really," Kisshu said sadly. "I don't know how I'm going to manage, knowing Mom's gone…."

"I'll help you and your dad get through this, and so will Pai and Taruto and their family, I'm sure of it," Ichigo said softly. "Were you close with your mom?"

"Yeah…." Kisshu said. "My dad is on the Council, so it was just her and me a lot of the time. Dad hated not having enough time to spend with me and Mom, though, and he would try various methods to escape going to Council meetings. He was pretty much forced into it, because his talent is heightened perception, like me. It's impossible to lie to him and get away with it; he always knows. Why do you think I never lied to you? I grew up knowing I'd get caught if I lied, so I never lie to anyone."

"Wow…" Ichigo said. "My parents were seriously gullible."

"Did you ever lie to them?" Kisshu asked.

"Not really," Ichigo said. "I was never really good at lying anyways. Of course, there was that time Moe and Miwa decided we should go out for ice cream, but our parents weren't having it, so we told them we were having a study group at the library. I'm so glad we didn't get caught."

Kisshu smiled slightly, then yawned. "Kish, you should get some sleep," Ichigo said. "Do you want me to sleep with you?"

"Yeah…" Kisshu said. Ichigo climbed under the covers with him, and they laid back. Kisshu fell asleep as Ichigo smoothed his hair back, and she wasn't far behind him.

Four hours later: Kisshu and Ichigo were both woken up by Pai shaking them, and they looked up at him. "We're here?" Kisshu asked.

"Yes, and the Council wants us, so I'd recommend getting up," Pai said.

Ichigo and Kisshu got up, and straightened their hair and clothes. "Ichigo, leave your stuff here, I'll get it later," Pai said.

"Alright," Ichigo said. Kisshu took her hand and teleported to a large circular room that Ichigo realized was underground.

The room was filled with Cyniclons, mainly middle-aged or elderly, and soon after Kisshu and Ichigo landed, Pai and Taruto teleported in. Kisshu walked to the center of the room, and went down on one knee, bowing his head. Ichigo copied him, as did Pai and Taruto.

A man with brown hair and brown eyes stood up and said, "Rise."

Kisshu, Ichigo, Pai, and Taruto obeyed, and the man came over, then asked, "How did it go?"

"The Mew Aqua is in this box, Hideki-sama," Pai said, opening a box that he had set down while they were kneeling.

Hideki-sama looked, and his eyes widened slightly. "You have this much?" he asked.

"Yes," Pai said. "It's certainly enough to heal Cyniclonia."

"Thank you," Hideki-sama said.

"You should be thanking Kisshu and Mew Ichigo; they convinced the rest of Ichigo's teammates to give us this," Pai said.

Hideki-sama smiled, and came over to Kisshu and Ichigo, who both bowed. They straightened as he said, "Thank you both; I'm very grateful to you for giving us the means to save our home."

"It was our pleasure," Ichigo said.

"May I ask why you decided to come with Kisshu?" Hideki-sama asked.

"Well, he and I are together, but it was also because my parents abandoned me, so I jumped at the chance of having a family," Ichigo said.

"That reminds me," Hideki-sama said. "Kisshu, I heard about your mother. I am truly sorry for your loss."

"Thank you, Hideki-sama," Kisshu said.

"Since I'm sure Pai can handle healing the planet, why don't you take Ichigo to your home?" Hideki-sama suggested. "I'm sure your father will want to meet her, and you haven't met your sister, have you?"

"No, I haven't," Kisshu said. "Is it okay for me to leave?"

"Yes, you should get home," Hideki-sama said. "Ichigo, welcome to Cyniclonia."

"Thank you, Hideki-sama," Ichigo said, bowing. Kisshu bowed as well, and teleported them to the front of a door.

"This is where we'll be living, at least until we can move to the surface," Kisshu said. He knocked, and a few minutes later, they heard footsteps. The door opened, revealing a tall Cyniclon man with black hair styled like Kisshu's, and sad golden eyes.

"Kisshu?" he asked.

"Hi Dad," Kisshu said. "I'm home."

Kisshu's father hugged Kisshu tightly. "I'm so glad you're back," he said softly. "I assume you heard about your mother?"

"Yeah," Kisshu said sadly. "I also heard I have a new sister."

"Yes," his dad said, letting him go. "Is this Ichigo?"

"Yes," Kisshu replied. "Ichigo, this is my dad, Higashi."

"It's nice to meet you," Ichigo said.

"You too Ichigo," Higashi said. "You can call me Uncle Higashi, since I heard from Hayako that I'm adopting you."

"Thanks Uncle Higashi," Ichigo said.

"Do you not have luggage?" Higashi asked.

"It's still on the ship; we were called to meet with the Council first, and it wasn't really appropriate to bring Ichigo's suitcase," Kisshu said. "I can go get it; I have to get my stuff anyways."

"Alright, I'll show Ichigo around," Higashi said. Kisshu nodded and teleported off. Higashi let Ichigo into the house, and closed the door as he said, "This is the main room; it's a two-bedroom, so I hope you don't mind sharing with Kisshu."

"I don't mind at all," Ichigo said. "What's your daughter's name, by the way?"

"We named her Tsukiko," Higashi said. "She's with my brother and his wife right now; I'm supposed to pick her up in about half an hour."

"Tsukiko is a pretty name," Ichigo said.

"Thanks," Higashi said. He sighed. "Anzu and I had a lot of trouble deciding on a name," he said softly. "Tsukiko is a very sweet baby, and she looks like me. Kisshu takes after Anzu, except for the fact he's got my eyes."

"What color eyes did Anzu have?" Ichigo asked.

"A really warm brown," Higashi said. "And they got warmer when she smiled- which was a lot. I'm really going to miss her…."

"I'm sorry," Ichigo said. "But you'll still have Kisshu and Tsukiko, and I'll be here too."

"Thanks," Higashi said. "How's Kisshu doing?"

"He's sad," Ichigo said. "He was crying for over half an hour after I got to the ship, and Pai said it took him over an hour to calm down after he told him the news. I guess we'll have to get through this together." She sighed, and said, "I would have liked to meet her, at least. I was kind of looking forward to having a mom."

"Are you an orphan?" Higashi asked.

"No, my parents just decided that they didn't really want to be parents anymore, and left me," Ichigo said sadly.

"I've never heard of that," Higashi said. "Well, you don't have to worry about me; parents on this planet stay with their kids no matter what, and keep in close contact even after their children move out. Bonds are stronger here."

"That sounds nice," Ichigo said, as Kisshu teleported back in carrying a bag and Ichigo's suitcase.

"Koneko-chan, what did you put in here?" Kisshu asked. "It's HEAVY!"

"Mainly clothes and books, but some of the books were a bit heavy," Ichigo said sheepishly. "I also packed my favorite stuffed animal and bathroom stuff. Sorry about that…."

"It's fine, I was just curious," Kisshu said. "I take it we're sharing?"

"Yup," Ichigo said. Kisshu perked up slightly, and took his bag and Ichigo's suitcase, then went down a hallway and went in the first door on the right. He came back out a minute later, and asked, "Dad, what's my sister's name?"

"Tsukiko," Higashi said. "She's my mirror image. And I forgot to mention you've got a new cousin too. Yuki gave birth a week before your mom, and she's got a little girl named Yuka now."

"That's great, she got her wish," Kisshu said. "And now maybe Taruto will have it easier."

"Yeah…." Higashi said. He sighed. "I envy Hayako," he said softly. "Yuki gave birth and is still alive."

"So Mom dying was because she gave birth?" Kisshu asked.

"Hayako's not sure; it's possible that she caught something and since her body hadn't quite recovered from having Tsukiko, she was too weak to fight it off," Higashi said. "A lot of people were in the hospital at the time; there's been a lot of sicknesses this year, though luckily nobody's had Toru Fever."

"Well, that's good news; the last time there was a case of Toru Fever, didn't it spread?" Kisshu asked.

"Yes," Higashi said. "I should go pick up your sister; do you and Ichigo want to come?"

"Sure," Ichigo said. "Kish?"

"Sure, I'll teleport you," Kisshu said. He took her hand and teleported to another door, then knocked as Higashi appeared behind them.

The door was opened by a woman who looked a lot like Taruto, and she said, "Oh, are you here to pick up Tsukiko?"

"Yes," Higashi said. "Oh, and this is Ichigo, Kisshu's girlfriend."

"It's nice to meet you, Ichigo," the woman said. "You can call me Aunt Yuki, okay?"

"Thanks Aunt Yuki," Ichigo said. "It's nice to meet you too."

Yuki smiled, and said, "Come in."

Kisshu, Ichigo, and Higashi followed her inside, and she closed the door, then called, "Hayako?"

"Coming," a man's voice called. Soon after, a man with purple hair and gold eyes came into the room, holding a small baby with curly black hair and golden eyes. "Hi Higashi, hi Kisshu," he said. "Kisshu, is this Ichigo?"

"Yes," Kisshu said. "Ichigo, this is my uncle, Hayako."

"It's nice to meet you," Ichigo said.

"You too, Ichigo," Hayako said. "You can call me Uncle Hayako."

"Thanks Uncle Hayako," Ichigo said.

Hayako smiled. Yuki looked closely at Ichigo, then said, "Your eyes…. look like Anzu's."

Kisshu, Higashi, and Hayako looked from her to Ichigo, who got nervous as they looked at her. "Is that bad?" she asked.

The others' uncomfortable looks were really all she needed. "If Pai turned me into a Cyniclon, would my eyes change color?" Ichigo asked.

Hayako looked thoughtful, and said, "Maybe…. when he gets back, let's ask."

Pai teleported in just as he said this, and asked, "What's going on?"

"If you turned Ichigo into a Cyniclon, would her eyes change color?" Hayako asked.

"Yes, but I'm not exactly sure what color," Pai said. "And her hair might change color too, but that's less likely."

"But they wouldn't be brown anymore, right?" Ichigo asked.

"No, they'd be some other color," Pai said. "Depending on whose DNA I use for the transformation serum, they could be any color. The two most likely possibilities are gold or orange, though."

"Why are your eyes navy blue, while everyone else in your family has orange or gold?" Ichigo asked.

"Beats me," Pai said. "I was just born this way. I think we'll all be better off if I use my DNA for the transformation serum; I think it'll speed up the rate at which you learn your new powers."

"Does that mean I'm going to get purple hair?" Ichigo asked.

"Not necessarily, but if you do, you can change the color with your powers," Pai said. "It's a variation on another spell that Kisshu created. Kisshu, would you like to demonstrate?"

Kisshu smirked and snapped his fingers. Pai suddenly had hot pink hair, and Ichigo, Taruto, and Yuki giggled. "What color is it?" Pai sighed.

"Hot pink," Ichigo giggled. "I wonder…. If you had cat ears, would you look like me?"

"I don't know and I don't want to find out," Pai said. "Kisshu, will you change my hair back now?"

"Can't you just tough it out till the spell wears off?" Kisshu asked. "I think it would cheer everyone up."

"I am not spending a week with hot pink hair, especially not when I've been ordered to meet with the Council tomorrow," Pai said.

Kisshu sighed and snapped his fingers again. Pai's hair was back to being purple. He sighed, and asked, "Ichigo, should we go back to the lab?"

"Sure," Ichigo said, looking at Kisshu. "Kisshu, why don't you stay with Uncle Higashi?" she suggested.

"You'll be okay?" Kisshu asked.

"I'll be fine," Ichigo replied.

"Okay," Kisshu said.

Pai took Ichigo's shoulder and teleported to his lab. When they landed, he said, "You can sit down in that chair over there; this will take a few minutes to get ready. So what brought this on?"

"My eyes," Ichigo said. "Apparently they look like Aunt Anzu's, so I suggested that if you turned me into a Cyniclon, my eye color would change as well. I don't want the others to be uncomfortable around me."

"That's kind of you," Pai said as he mixed what looked like blood into a vial of pale yellow liquid.

"I just don't want to hurt Kisshu any further," Ichigo said. "I know I hurt him a lot in the past, and I still feel guilty about that. I'm just glad I came to my senses before Aunt Anzu died; judging by how upset he is, I don't think he would have been able to handle my previous behavior on top of his mom dying."

"You're right," Pai said. "Kisshu's always been very emotional; it's hard for people to understand why we're best friends, since I'm almost his exact opposite. I just hope Aunt Anzu's death won't make him emotionally unstable, since that could be dangerous for both him and those around him. Luckily for us, my mom is a mind healer, so hopefully Kisshu and Uncle Higashi will pull through."

"I hope so too," Ichigo said softly. "I don't like seeing Kisshu sad."

Pai sighed and said, "I've got the serum ready. I should warn you, this might hurt."

"I'm sure I'll manage," Ichigo said.

"Alright, hold your arm out," Pai said. Ichigo obeyed, and he stuck a syringe into her vein, pushing the serum into her bloodstream. When it was gone, he took the syringe out, and put a bandage on her arm. Ichigo started to glow as he finished, and then she screamed as the light around her got brighter. Pai shielded his eyes as the light continued to get brighter, and Ichigo screamed again. Finally the light flashed, and faded. When it was gone, Pai opened his eyes, blinking. He saw that Ichigo was collapsed on the floor. Her hair hadn't changed from her human color, but it was a little darker and much longer, reaching the middle of her back. Her ribbons had fallen out, and were on the floor next to her. Her ears had changed to Cyniclon ears, and were a bit smaller than Kisshu's. Her skin was much paler, and Pai noticed she was thinner, too. He put a hand on her chest, and was relieved to find that she was just unconscious. It didn't feel like there was anything else wrong, so Pai gently tapped Ichigo's forehead. Ichigo slowly opened her eyes, which were now…. Spring green!? Where did that come from? Pai wondered. He returned his attention to Ichigo as she said, "You were right, that hurt. I think I'm fine now, though. Why do you look shocked?"

"Your eyes are spring green," Pai said. "I checked, you shouldn't have any problems with the transformation."

"Great!" Ichigo said. "My hair got longer….."

"Is that bad?" Pai asked.

"No, I always wanted long hair, but mine refused to grow out," Ichigo said. "Can we go show Kisshu and everyone else?"

"Sure," Pai said. He took Ichigo's shoulder, and teleported back to his house. Yuki and Hayako were still there, but Kisshu, Higashi and Tsukiko weren't. Hayako looked up, and looked startled. "I see it went well," he said. "I wasn't expecting green eyes, though."

"Is that rare?" Ichigo asked.

"Yes, actually," Hayako said. "And I don't think I've ever seen that particular shade of green."

"Maybe it's because I wasn't born a Cyniclon?" Ichigo suggested.

"Maybe," Hayako said. "Oh well, they're very pretty."

"Thanks," Ichigo said. "I like green."

"Your hair got longer too," Yuki commented. "And it's a bit darker."

"Yup," Ichigo said happily. "Did Kisshu and Uncle Higashi go home with Tsukiko?"

"Yes, so you should go show them," Hayako said. "Oh, and Pai, on your way back, will you pick Taruto up from the playground? He and Yusuke went there after Yusuke heard he was back."

"Alright," Pai said. "I'll be back."

Hayako nodded, and said, "Ichigo, it was nice to meet you, you should come again soon."

"Okay, thanks Uncle Hayako," Ichigo said. "Bye."

"Bye," Yuki said. Pai took Ichigo's shoulder and teleported to Higashi's front door, then knocked. Kisshu came and opened it a minute later, and his jaw dropped. "You're gorgeous," he told Ichigo.

Ichigo blushed and said, "Thank Pai for that."

Kisshu looked at Pai, who asked, "Will this help your fan girl problem?"

"Yep, none of them are even half as beautiful as Ichigo- and they're all annoying," Kisshu said. "Now that I've got a girlfriend, maybe they'll back off."

"If they're anything like fan girls on Earth, I wouldn't count on it," Ichigo said dryly. "My experience with fan girls is when they want someone, they'll do anything and everything to get that person, whether or not the person has a girlfriend already. Can I come in?"

"Oh right, sorry," Kisshu said, letting her in. "Pai, have fun with the Council tomorrow!"

"Thanks," Pai said sourly. "I have to go pick up Taruto, have a nice evening."

"Thanks Pai," Ichigo said. "And thanks for turning me into a Cyniclon."

"Sure," Pai said, and teleported off. Kisshu closed the front door, and said, "Dinner's in the oven, come on in."

Ichigo followed him in, and they saw Higashi reading something in the living room. He looked up, and said, "Wow, you look great Ichigo."

"Thanks Uncle Higashi," Ichigo said. "Uncle Hayako said he's never seen my eye color before though."

"Oh well, you'll be unique," Higashi said. "Nothing wrong with that."

Ichigo smiled and said, "You're right."

"By the way, normally when we adopt on this planet, the child we adopt takes their adoptive family's surname, is that okay?" Higashi asked.

"It's fine; Kisshu says I'd be Ikisatashi Ichigo sooner or later anyways," Ichigo said. "He's still sulking about having to wait till I'm eighteen to marry me, since I'm a year younger than him."

"I'm NOT sulking," Kisshu said sulkily.

"Yes you are," Ichigo said. "It's cute, though, so don't worry about it."

Kisshu perked up a bit, and said, "I'll go check on dinner. We're having cheese and bacon quiche."

Ichigo smiled and said, "Sounds great."

Kisshu smiled back and left to check on the quiche. Ichigo heard Higashi sigh, and asked, "What's wrong?"

"It's good you can make Kisshu smile," Higashi said. "He and Anzu were very close, closer than he and I were, due to the fact Hideki-sama and Koni-sama were constantly on my case about meetings. I despise being on the Council, and frankly the only reason I didn't just blow up and tell Hideki-sama straight out that I was sick of being on the Council was Anzu. She was always there to calm me down, and just knowing she was waiting for me really kept me going. The Council wanted Kisshu to be a politician too, but the one good thing I managed to do was persuade them to give it up. Anzu and I didn't want that life for Kisshu, and it seems that that was for the best; you two wouldn't have met if it wasn't for the fact I managed to get Kisshu enrolled in the military academy so early. Of course, part of that was that he had nearly blown up the elementary school a few times, but I knew Kisshu would hate being a politician."

"Why did the Council want Kisshu to be a politician?" Ichigo asked. "He never really explained that to me."

"Kisshu has the same talent I do; heightened perception," Higashi said. "He has it much stronger than I do, though, so he'd be ideal to take my place. There's no way I'm going to let the Council do that to him, though. Especially since Kisshu can't sit still for more than about five minutes."

"If you weren't on the Council, what would you rather do?" Ichigo asked, curious.

"I'm trained to heal, like my brother Hayako," Higashi said. "I'd like to be a healer, and help people that way. Frankly, being on the Council is a waste of my time; all they do is argue, and I'm sitting there bored out of my mind until someone asks me if the guy he's talking to is lying. I'm the youngest member of the Council, so they all think it's fine to push me around. Hideki-sama is the only one who's reasonably sane, in my opinion. At least they're letting me have some time off after Anzu died."

Suddenly there was a knock on the front door, and Higashi sighed. "Ichigo, do you mind getting that?" he asked.

"Sure," Ichigo said, and went to open the front door. She found Hideki-sama standing outside, and he looked startled as she bowed. "Ichigo?" he asked.

"Yes," Ichigo said. "I asked Pai to turn me into a Cyniclon. Would you like to come in?"

"Yes, I'd like to talk to Higashi," Hideki-sama said. Ichigo let him in as Higashi came out of the living room.

Higashi bowed as he asked, "I assume someone heard the conversation Ichigo and I were having?"

"Koni was eavesdropping," Hideki-sama said somewhat disgustedly. "I honestly don't know what his problem is, but I'm glad to hear that you don't think I'm insane too."

"I would think Koni-sama would consider eavesdropping beneath him," Higashi said.

"One would think," Hideki-sama said. "I am interested to hear that you hate being on the Council and didn't tell anyone about it."

"Aside from you, everyone on there would agree to lock me up for disrespect," Higashi said. "And after sixteen years, anything I had to say about them would probably be considered blasphemy."

"I don't think that lot would be able to agree on anything, much less what to do if you told them what you really felt," Hideki-sama said dryly. "I must admit there have been times I've considered disbanding them- but then I remember they'll assume I want to be a dictator, and I go back to listening to their bickering. How bad does it get when I'm not there?"

"BAD," Higashi said. "And the only time they so much as look at me is when one of them thinks the other is lying. Remind me again whose idea it was to put me on there?"

"Koni's, unfortunately," Hideki-sama sighed. "No offense, but I personally thought that you were a bit young for the job, but they didn't listen to that concern, and forced me into putting you on the Council."

"I AM too young to be wasting my life listening to a bunch of old geezers bickering about heaven knows what," Higashi grumbled. "It's all I can do to keep from falling asleep these days. I am SO grateful you let me have time off. Otherwise, I'd have taken a leaf from Kisshu's book and started pranking them."

"That would certainly liven things up," Hideki-sama said noncommittally. "But if you resign, what will you do?"

"Take up healing, like Hayako," Higashi said. "I'm trained to heal, but then Koni-sama apparently found out about my talent, and decided to make me the youngest member of the Council since we left Earth. I think he enjoys making me miserable…."

"Must run in the family; wasn't his grandson Kino expelled from the military academy for attempting to get Kisshu to leave?" Hideki-sama asked.

"Yep," Higashi said. "Luckily his father wasn't such a bad apple, but Kino was the spawn of the Devil."

"Sometimes they just turn out bad," Hideki-sama sighed. "So you'd rather take up healing?"

"Yes," Higashi replied.

"I think we might be able to make that work," Hideki-sama said thoughtfully. "I did just put Koni on probation for eavesdropping on you, so there's not much he can do about it if I say I'm going to put you on the hospital staff instead."

"That would be great," Higashi said with relief. "Before I resign, can I put a whoopee cushion on Koni-sama's chair?"

"That would be kind of fun to watch…." Hideki-sama said. "I suppose it's fine, especially since he was eavesdropping on you. Are you bringing Kisshu and Ichigo to watch?"

"Is that okay?" Higashi asked.

"Yes, the Council should know that Ichigo's a Cyniclon, and I know they want to talk about restoring the planet with both of them and Pai," Hideki-sama said. "Don't worry, I won't let them force Kisshu into anything politics-related."

"Thank you," Higashi said, bowing.

Suddenly Kisshu came into the room, and bowed, then said, "Dinner's ready, and there's enough for all of us, if you want to stay too, Hideki-sama."

"If you don't mind, I've heard you've become an accomplished chef," Hideki-sama said.

"I don't mind," Kisshu said. "I hear you're giving Dad his greatest wish, thank you."

"You're welcome," Hideki-sama said.

Kisshu smiled and said, "Come eat, the quiche should be cool enough to cut, at least."

Ichigo, Higashi, and Hideki-sama followed him back to the kitchen and sat down as Kisshu cut the quiche and brought some to the table. Kisshu sat down after serving everyone, and said, "I hope you like it."

"I like everything you make," Ichigo said.

Kisshu smiled as he said, "So Dad, I hear you need one of my whoopee cushions."

"Yup, I can't wait to see the look on Koni-sama's face," Higashi said as he started eating.

"And to think you complained about me…." Kisshu said.

"Well, you did nearly blow up the school- five times," Higashi said.

"Mmph," Kisshu said. "How was I supposed to know lighting bottled flour on fire would create an explosion?"

"What grade was that again?" Hideki-sama asked.

"Second," Kisshu said. "I like blowing things up. While I was on Earth, I discovered dynamite, and blew up Pai's stuffed animal collection. Boy was that fun, all the stuffing and little body parts flying everywhere!"

Higashi and Hideki-sama both snorted as Ichigo started giggling. "That was the time Pai nearly killed you, right?" Ichigo asked.

"No, that was the time he banished me to your place for two weeks," Kisshu said. "The time he nearly strangled me was when I painted his room bubblegum pink, and left a herd of pink papier-mâché ponies in there. He spent HOURS screaming about pink doom, and then found out it was me, and tried to strangle me. As usual, he didn't succeed."

"Pai is afraid of pink?" Hideki-sama asked.

"Yup," Kisshu said. "It started after he found me sleeping in Ichigo's tree, and he looked in her room, which is solid pink, freaked out, and now he's afraid of pink. I don't mind pink, since Ichigo loves it, but Pai apparently can't handle it. And now he and Taruto are BOTH afraid of pink ponies."

"'Pink ponies'?" Higashi asked. "I didn't think those existed except in children's books."

"They don't, but I guess Pai and Taruto think they're the signal of the end of the universe," Kisshu said. "Those two are insane…."

"I thought Pai laughing was the end of the universe," Ichigo commented. "Or was that the time he was humming?"

"That was the time he was humming, and Taruto got so freaked out he started screaming about the end of the universe," Kisshu said. "Unfortunately for you, you just happened to be on the ship, and we had to go back to your place, because Taruto turned out to be a stress eater and went on sugar high. Oh well, at least I didn't have to deal with that, since I was with you."

"Sugar high?" Hideki-sama asked. "Why was Taruto eating sugar in the first place?"

"His girlfriend, my teammate Pudding, is obsessed with candy and anything else sugary," Ichigo said. "Sugar doesn't have the same effect on humans as it does on Cyniclons. But Pudding didn't know that, and she accidentally turned Taruto into a sugar addict. We're hoping Aunt Yuki can do something about that; every time he was on sugar high, he would be screaming about 'fanged snowflakes' and 'giant poisonous gummy bears'. Scary. At least we figured out the cure for that."

"There's a cure for sugar?" Higashi asked, interested.

"Yes, it's grapefruit juice," Ichigo said. "Pudding discovered it by accident, and it works like a charm- but the person who it's used on won't remember anything from when they were on sugar high for some reason. At least it calms them down- which is good, because one time Taruto decided he was going to dump three cups of pure sugar into Kisshu's soda, and since it was sweet already, Kisshu didn't notice. And if he hadn't decided to come to my place and glomp me, he probably would have been on serious sugar high for a week, according to Pai."

"Three cups of pure sugar!?" Hideki-sama asked incredulously. "That would be more like a month on sugar high, especially if what Kisshu was drinking was already sugary."

"I am SO glad I kept grapefruit juice on hand," Ichigo sighed. "If it wasn't for my friend Lettuce, who was over that day, I don't think I could have gotten Kisshu off of me long enough to get the grapefruit juice. Pudding and I kept it on hand all the time after she discovered its abilities, since we're the only two Mews whose houses Kisshu and Taruto knew how to find. We didn't really worry about Pai going on sugar high, so Lettuce didn't keep it on hand."

"Wow…" Higashi said. "So Pai has a girlfriend on Earth too?"

"Yup," Ichigo said. "So Uncle Higashi, how are you planning to get a whoopee cushion on Koni-sama's chair unnoticed?"

"I guess I'll have to get to the Council room early," Higashi said. "What time is the meeting?"

"Ten AM," Hideki-sama replied. "I think if you three get there at 9:30, you'll be good to go. Some of the members like to get there early, but not that early."

"Alright," Higashi said. "Thank you, Hideki-sama."

Hideki-sama smiled and said, "You're welcome. I should go before Koni decides to come looking for me- or sends Kia."

"Who's Kia?" Ichigo asked.

"Kia is the Council's messenger," Higashi said. "She's sweet, but she's also very persistent. At least she's not into nagging, though. If I say to her that I don't care if Koni-sama's coming, she'll give me this look like I'm crazy, sigh, and teleport off, muttering under her breath."

Ichigo giggled, and Kisshu sighed. "The few times she's come to get ME, she gives me a lecture on the way there," he said. "Jeez, all I did was ask Yumemi-sama why she had spots on her face."

"And how old were you?" Hideki-sama asked.

"Six, I got called in because of the lizard incident, where that lizard I let out somehow managed to land my teacher in the hospital with a bunch of bite marks," Kisshu said. "I don't really know why she kept it in a cage like that, but it's not my fault it hated her. Anyways, I asked Yumemi-sama why she had spots on her face, and she turned this really interesting shade of purple, and two of the Council members had to stop her from mutilating me, because apparently she's a bit touchy about her liver spots. Jeez, what else do you expect from a curious six-year-old?"

Higashi, Ichigo, and Hideki-sama were all laughing too hard to respond. Kisshu snickered, but that faded when they heard a knock on the door, and he got up to get it. The others attempted to calm down as they heard him say, "Hi Yumemi-sama, what can I do for you?"

"You can tell me where Hideki-sama went, and preferably without the comments I heard the last time we spoke," a stern female voice said.

So much for calming down. The three in the kitchen all burst out laughing again as Kisshu said, "He's in the kitchen, we just finished dinner."

"And what's with the insane laughter?" Yumemi-sama asked.

"I was telling everyone about that time when I was six, and I asked a question that you decided warranted mutilation," Kisshu said brightly. "Was Hideki-sama not there for that incident? Because Dad and Ichigo aren't the only ones laughing too hard to speak."

"No, he was not there, and now I'm never going to hear the end of this," Yumemi-sama said wearily. "Are all children this insolent?"

"No, it's just me and Taruto," Kisshu said.

"I'd like to see what happens when YOU get liver spots," Yumemi-sama grumbled.

"That won't happen," Kisshu said. "Dad's family has a gene that cancels out liver spots- at least for men."

Hearing more laughter from the kitchen, Yumemi-sama sighed and said, "Kisshu, I would appreciate it if you would refrain from corrupting Hideki-sama further."

"With all due respect to both of you, I didn't corrupt him," Kisshu said. "Hideki-sama just has a good sense of humor. And for the record, I was six years old when that happened. Do you really think I'm still like that?"

"I'll believe it when I see it," Yumemi-sama said grouchily. She and Kisshu both looked up when Hideki-sama came in with Higashi and Ichigo, and said, "Thank you, Kisshu, I haven't laughed like that in a long time."

"You're welcome," Kisshu said, grinning as he bowed. "I think Yumemi-sama wants you back now, though."

Yumemi-sama glared at Kisshu as Hideki-sama said, "Well, thank you all for dinner, and I'll see you tomorrow at the meeting."

"We'll be there," Higashi said as he and Ichigo bowed. Hideki-sama and Yumemi-sama teleported out, and Kisshu said, "Well, that went well. I'm tired, I think I'll go to bed soon. Koneko-chan?"

"I'll do the same, since we're getting up early," Ichigo said.

"Now that you're a Cyniclon, you shouldn't need more than seven hours of sleep, unless you're sick," Kisshu commented. "Though after today, I'm not sure that will apply, since you just got turned into a Cyniclon."

"We'll have to see," Ichigo said.

"You two head on off to bed, I'll see you in the morning," Higashi said. "I have to check on Tsukiko, too."

"Okay," Kisshu said. Ichigo hugged Higashi and said, "Goodnight Uncle Higashi."

"Goodnight," Higashi said, hugging back. Kisshu came over and hugged them too. When they broke apart, he and Ichigo went to get ready for bed.

The next morning: Ichigo woke up feeling rested, and looked at Kisshu's clock. She was shocked to see that it was only six AM, but she got up anyways. Kisshu was stirring too, and he opened his eyes to see Ichigo looking down at him. "How long have you been up?" he asked.

"Two minutes," Ichigo said. "I guess you're right about how much sleep I need; I feel fine."

"Good," Kisshu said. "Would you like me to show you how the shower works?"

"Sure, thanks," Ichigo said. "Let me just get some clothes."

"Nice clothes, we are going to meet with the Council," Kisshu said.

"'Kay," Ichigo said. She went to her suitcase, which hadn't been unpacked much yesterday, and took out a white blouse with full sleeves, and a black knee-length skirt with little white flowers embroidered on the hem. She also picked out black tights and a pair of black ankle boots that she had brought. Picking out a white ribbon, she got some deodorant and a comb, then followed Kisshu to the bathroom. Setting the clothes on the counter, she watched as he showed her how to turn on the shower, which was actually pretty similar to the one she had had on Earth, except the faucets were reversed and the shower came on as soon as you turned one on, instead of water coming out of the faucets. Kisshu left after showing her how to use it, and she stepped into the shower after getting undressed. It was nice and warm, and she sighed happily. Washing her hair was a bit hard, since it was about twice as long as it had been, but she managed it, and stepped out after turning the water off, picking up the towel Kisshu had left her, and drying off. Her hair was hard to dry, and she was starting to wish she had brought a hair dryer. She finally gave up trying to get it any dryer, and put her clothes on, then started combing her hair. It took a long time, but she finally got it dry and started braiding it, then tied the braid off with the white ribbon. She had braided it over her left shoulder, and she looked at herself in the mirror. She was a bit stunned by how she looked; her hair was definitely darker, and it went nicely with her now spring green eyes. The white ribbon added a nice touch, and she noticed her ears were about Kisshu's size; just a bit smaller. Remembering that Kisshu was probably waiting, she left the bathroom and went back to their room.

"Did you have a nice shower?" Kisshu asked when she came in. "You were in there a while."

"Yeah, sorry about that, I was having trouble with my hair," Ichigo said. "It's much longer than I'm used to."

"It's fine," Kisshu said. "You look amazing. I'm going to go wake up Dad, and then take a shower. Dad's not a morning person."

Ichigo giggled as Kisshu left, and decided to start unpacking while she waited for Kisshu.

About twenty minutes later, Kisshu was back, with his hair in its usual style, but he was wearing a nice button-down shirt, which was such a dark green it was almost black. He was also wearing black pants tucked into his usual boots. "You look amazing too," Ichigo told him.

"Thanks," Kisshu said, smirking. "I think there's some cereal for breakfast, is that okay?"

"Sure, what kind?" Ichigo asked.

"Honey Bunches of Oats," Kisshu said. "I brought a lot back, because that's my favorite."

"I like that a lot too," Ichigo said. She heard the shower turn on, and asked, "So you got Uncle Higashi up?"

"Yup," Kisshu said. "We're taking Tsukiko to Aunt Yuki's after breakfast, and then going to set up Dad's prank idea."

"Great," Ichigo said. "This should be fun!"

Kisshu just smirked and led the way to the kitchen.

They sat down with their cereal, and were starting to eat when Higashi came in. "What's that you're eating?" he asked.

"Cereal, it's a human breakfast food," Kisshu said. "There's some in the box if you want some, but if not there's bread too, and there's butter and jam in the fridge."

"I'll try the cereal, but what's jam?" Higashi asked.

"It's cooked fruit with sugar added," Kisshu said. "Not to the point where the sugar would affect us, though."

"Interesting," Higashi said as he got himself some cereal. He tried some, and said, "This is really good. I guess humans have more food ideas that we do."

"Yeah, and I brought back a lot of cookbooks that I stole, as well as a bunch of recipes I copied from Keiichiro's cookbooks," Kisshu said. "There's also a bunch of non-perishable food like pasta on the ship still. We brought a lot of food back. Actually, we practically cleaned out a few aisles in one of the grocery stores, since they have so much food on Earth. They have whole stores with only food. And they're BIG stores, too."

"Sounds like heaven," Higashi sighed.

"That's the only part of Earth that I thought was heaven," Kisshu said. "The humans- aside from Ichigo and her friends- aren't really very nice, even to each other, and it's way too polluted. They've got some cool inventions for getting places, and other inventions for different parts of life, but they're not really a very nice species. Some of them seem nice, but that seems to be a minority. Ichigo's school friends seemed nice, though."

"Yeah, I wish I could have said goodbye, but their parents had them both under house arrest for getting suspended again," Ichigo said. "When they get off suspension and house arrest, I told Lettuce to tell them what happened."

"How'd they get suspended?" Higashi asked as they finished breakfast.

"They're very overprotective, and when someone hurts me, emotionally or physically, they go berserk and beat that person up," Ichigo sighed. "This time they beat up this girl who told me I was a slut."

"If I ever hear that from someone, that someone will DIE," Kisshu growled.

"That's going a bit far, Kisshu," Higashi said. "At least TRY not to get sent to prison."

"Fine," Kisshu said. "Are we going to take Tsukiko to Aunt Yuki's now?"

"Yes, and we're supposed to pick up Pai too," Higashi said. "Let's find a whoopee cushion and go."

Kisshu smirked and went to his and Ichigo's room, then returned with a fully blown-up whoopee cushion. "I'll take Ichigo and this, you take Tsukiko," he told Higashi.

"Alright," Higashi said. He went and got Tsukiko, then came back. Tsukiko was waking up, and she made a soft mewing sound. "Morning Tsukiko," Ichigo said.

Tsukiko turned her head a bit and smiled. Higashi and Kisshu smiled too, as did Ichigo. "She's adorable," Ichigo said.

"Yes, she is," Higashi agreed. "Let's get going." He teleported, followed by Kisshu with Ichigo.

They landed in front of Hayako and Yuki's front door, and Ichigo knocked. Pai opened the door, and said, "Come in, Mom said you'd be here soon." He was also dressed up, in the same style as Kisshu, but his shirt was dark purple, and he was wearing his usual shoes rather than boots or dress shoes.

Yuki came out of the kitchen, and said, "You all look very nice. I take it you're going to the Council room?"

"Yup," Kisshu said. He and Higashi both had identical smirks, and Yuki said, "I don't want to know why you're smirking like that, so I'll take Tsukiko to play with Yuka. They seem to really like each other."

"That's good, since they're cousins," Kisshu said. "Come on, Pai, let's get going."

Pai sighed and followed Kisshu as he teleported out with Ichigo. Higashi followed after saying goodbye to Tsukiko.

They landed in the empty Council room a minute later, and Higashi walked over to one seat in particular, and set the whoopee cushion down on it. Then he made a hand sign, and the whoopee cushion vanished. Ichigo looked at Kisshu, who said, "Dad can make things invisible."

"I assume there's some reason behind this?" Pai asked.

"Hideki-sama said it was fine," Higashi said, coming back over. "Don't blow our cover, got it?"

"Fine…." Pai sighed.

A while later, members of the Council started to file in, all of them remaining standing. One woman came up to Higashi and asked, "I assume there's a reason you're here early?"

"We wanted to show Ichigo around, since she was only here briefly yesterday," Higashi said. "Where's Hideki-sama and Koni-sama?"

"On their way, I assume," the woman said. "Try to be a bit more patient."

"Mmph," Higashi said as the woman left.

Hideki-sama and Koni-sama came in soon after, and then all the Council members went to their assigned seats. Koni-sama was sitting right in the front row of seats as all the members started to quiet down, and Higashi, Kisshu, Ichigo, and Pai went to the center of the room and went down on one knee, trying to hide their smirks. When everyone was quiet, Hideki-sama and the others sat down- and a loud farting noise came from Koni-sama's direction. Higashi undid the invisibility spell as Koni-sama jumped up and Hideki-sama started snickering. Ichigo, Kisshu, and Higashi were snickering too as Koni-sama screeched, "Who put a whoopee cushion on my chair!?"

Higashi and Kisshu both burst out laughing at the same time, and Koni-sama glared at them. "Explanation. NOW," he said.

Noticing that Higashi was having trouble talking, Hideki-sama snickered and said, "I said Higashi could do it in revenge for your little eavesdropping trick last night. That was quite fun. And frankly, if you hadn't forced him onto the Council sixteen years ago, this wouldn't have happened. He turned to face the Council and said, "I would like to announce that I am freeing Ikisatashi Higashi from his position on the Council."

This caused a general outcry of "WHAT!?" and "We need his talent!"

Hideki-sama waited till they were quiet, and then said, "You don't NEED his talent, and since he'd much rather be working as a healer, which is what he was originally trained for, I've decided that if the Council continues forcing Higashi into being a member, I'll let him prank however many members he wants, without limit. And with Kisshu as his son, I'm sure you can imagine that's going to make your lives hell."

There was a collective groan, and then Yumemi-sama, who was sitting in the second row, asked, "Are you sure they didn't corrupt you?"

"Forgetting something?" Hideki-sama asked. "Before Kisshu came along, I was the one topping the charts for pranks. I should really commend Kisshu; he broke both my records."

"Which were…." one of the men on the Council said.

"I nearly blew up the school three times, and Kisshu doubled that, and I only dumped slime on the principal; I didn't redecorate the teachers' lounge with slime," Hideki-sama said. "Not to mention the time Kisshu came up with a variation on the spell that lets us put someone in different clothes. I never would have thought of using that spell on someone's hair."

"I seem to recall that Kisshu used that on the principal, and she had spiked neon yellow hair for a week before Kisshu figured out how to take the spell off," Yumemi-sama commented. "I don't agree that Kisshu should be commended for pranking not only the school, but half of our entire population, however. I don't think, due to the evil grin on his face, that he needs further encouragement."

"Very well, I suppose you'll just have to live with my admiration, Kisshu," Hideki-sama said.

"That's more than enough, sir," Kisshu said, bowing. Then he straightened up, and said, "I have a message for the Council."

"Do we want to hear it?" Yumemi-sama asked warily.

"If I get forced into politics, I'll start pranking the Council rather than my teachers," Kisshu said. "And I have lots of better pranks than invisible whoopee cushions."

"Thanks," Higashi said sourly.

"Sorry Dad," Kisshu said sheepishly. Then he looked back at the Council, and asked, "So you're not going to put me on the Council, right?"

There was a collective shudder as Koni-sama said, "HELL no. I shudder to think what's going to happen if that were to occur."

"Well, for starters, Yumemi-sama would be hallucinating about liver spots that come alive….." Kisshu said.

"Why ME?" Yumemi-sama moaned.

"You tried to mutilate me when I was six," Kisshu said. "And Koni-sama would-"

"Alright, I think they get the idea," Hideki-sama said, cutting Kisshu off. The Council members were looking at Kisshu like he was going to eat them. Hideki-sama sighed and said, "Now that the Ikisatashis are free from politics, we have other matters to discuss. Pai has managed to heal the planet with the Mew Aqua he was given, so we'll have to start discussing moving to the surface at some point. What I wanted to discuss before that was Ichigo, however."

"What about her?" Higashi asked.

"I want you to ask Hayako to find out what her powers and talents are," Hideki-sama said. "Please inform me of his findings, and depending on what he finds, we can start looking for teachers."

"Understood," Higashi said. "Is that everything?"

"I also wanted to ask if she and Kisshu are bonded," Hideki-sama said.

"Yes, we are," Ichigo replied.

"Good, that should take care of Kisshu's fan girl problem," Hideki-sama commented. "If anyone becomes a problem, however, please come to me; we don't need problems like that while rebuilding."

"I understand," Kisshu said.

"So do I," Ichigo added.

"Alright, then you two and Higashi are free to go," Hideki-sama said. "Pai, stay for a bit please."

"Hai," Pai said as Kisshu, Ichigo and Higashi bowed and left.

When they got outside, Higashi said, "Well, that was fun. Let's go find Hayako, he can figure out what you can do now, Ichigo."

"Okay," Ichigo replied. Kisshu took her shoulder, and he and Higashi teleported to Hayako.

To Ichigo's surprise, they landed in what looked like a lobby, and Higashi noticed her surprise. "Hayako works at the hospital; this is the lobby," he said. He went up to the receptionist, who looked up, and asked, "Do you know where Hayako is?"

"He's in Room 147; I'll let him know you're here," the woman said. "It might be a few minutes; why don't you have a seat?"

Higashi nodded, and he went to one of the benches, followed by Kisshu and Ichigo. "I guess I'll have to get used to coming here," Higashi said softly. "Oh well, at least I can help out."

The receptionist apparently heard, because she asked, "Are you going to be a healer now?"

"I'm planning on it, now that Hideki-sama let me off the hook," Higashi replied. "About time, too. At least he let me prank Koni-sama before leaving."

"You've got guts, I'll give you that," the receptionist said dryly. "What'd they say about Kisshu?"

"I threatened to prank every member of the Council, they shuddered, and when I asked if they were still going to put me on the Council, Koni-sama said, "HELL no," Kisshu said, smirking. "And I think Yumemi-sama's going to be afraid of me now that I told her what I'd do in retaliation for the mutilation incident eight years ago."

"Mutilation incident?" the receptionist asked.

"Yeah, I asked why she had so many spots on her face, and she shouted, "I'm going to mutilate you, you little monster!" Then Koni-sama and Mikan-sama had to hold her back, because she made it pretty clear that she WAS going to mutilate me. Touchy."

The receptionist just sighed and then said, "Hayako's on his way."

Sure enough, Hayako teleported in, and asked, "How'd it go?"

"Very well," Higashi said with a smirk. "I pranked Koni-sama, I got freed from being on the Council, and Kisshu made them all shudder."

Hayako sighed and asked, "And why did you need me?"

"Hideki-sama wants you to find out what Ichigo can do," Higashi said.

"Alright," Hayako said. "Ichigo, stay quiet, okay?"

"Okay," Ichigo said.

Hayako put a hand on her forehead, concentrating. "You can use all our normal abilities- flying, teleporting, telepathy, and mind-searching," he said in a distant voice. "It shouldn't be too hard for you to learn the spells we have for fixing things and the one we have for changing things- which means you can put someone in different clothes, and I'm sure Kisshu can teach you the variation he created for hair. Your talents lean more towards healing than fighting, so I don't think you'd be suited for the military like Kisshu. It seems like your healing talents would include mind healing like Yuki. And you have two personal talents, which is unusual; most people only have one. You have a talent for calming people down, and making them feel better, which will go well for you if you go into mind healing. But you also have heightened perception, though not on the scale that Higashi and Kisshu have it on." He took his hand away, and said, "I figured out what's up with your unusual eye color, too."

"What is it?" Ichigo asked. "That's a lot already."

"Part of heightened perception is the ability to see through people's words; in your case, you'll also be able to see through illusion and invisibility spells, given the right training," Hayako said.

"That's COOL," Ichigo said. She looked at Kisshu, who appeared to be sulking, and asked, "What's wrong?"

"Your powers aren't for fighting…." Kisshu said sulkily.

"That's a good thing; we balance each other out," Ichigo said. "You're the fighter and I'm the healer."

Kisshu looked at her and smiled. "You're right," he said. "I guess we should inform Hideki-sama of your powers, and then we can start training you."

Ichigo smiled. "Great!" she said happily.

I think this might have to be continued in another chapter; I'm up to 27 pages and still have some ideas, but I don't want to make it too long, so I'll leave it off here, and start work on the next chapter when I'm less tired. Review?