Little Morning Confession
Disclaimer: I don't own Fruits Basket or any of its characters. This is a strictly non-profit production. Please don't sue me!
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"Uwaaa …" Tooru sat up and yawned widely, covering her mouth with one hand. Like every other morning, she looked out her bedroom window at the sky and smiled at the azure blue. "It's going to be so lovely today, Okaa-san!" she told the picture on her nightstand, sliding out of her bed and getting dressed in short order. "I love sunny days."
It was a Sunday, which meant no school. Deciding to wear a simple tee-shirt and shorts, Tooru went downstairs and, like every other day, went straight to the kitchen to make breakfast. She dumped rice in the steamer and turned the timer on, then started the miso soup, humming the little song that Momiji had taught her at the onsen.
Every day at this house, Tooru felt blessed. She felt so grateful to Shigure and Yuki for letting her live here, and every day she tried to express her gratitude with great care for the meals. She liked cooking anyway, and it was so nice to see Yuki smile and say 'thank you'. And of course, Shigure would gush about her food like it was fit for a king, but she was pretty sure that he was just being nice. And Kyou … Tooru giggled to herself, interrupting her own humming. Kyou would get mad and say she worked too hard on the meals when it didn't really matter that much anyway, but Tooru knew that it was just his way of saying 'thank you'.
The rice had just finished steaming when the shouji slid open to reveal Kyou. Kyou was a morning person, and he almost always woke up before Yuki and Shigure, but not always before Tooru. Even if he did, he usually disappeared in the mornings to … well, Tooru didn't know what, but he always came back in time for breakfast. "'Yo," he greeted her casually, crossing the kitchen to the refrigerator and taking out the milk, drinking straight from the carton.
"Ohayou, Kyou-kun," Tooru smiled brightly. The first time she had seen Kyou drink straight from the carton she had tried to get him to stop, but it didn't seem that Yuki or Shigure drank milk much, so in the end no one minded. "Did you sleep well?"
"Eh." Kyou failed to give a true answer, as usual, replacing the carton in the fridge and wiping his mouth with the back of his hand. "What're you making?"
"Miso soup and rice, and pickles," Tooru answered, turning to face Kyou just in time to see him make a little face at the mention of 'pickles'. "Ah, I'm sorry! You don't have to eat the pickles," she apologized.
Kyou wasn't a big fan of vegetables. He would tolerate them in soup and eat some without complaint, unless it was leek. Kyou avoided leek like it would make him sick. But when she bowed and apologized, he snorted. "Ch', why do you apologize for everything!?" he demanded, looking away. "I know I don't have to eat the pickles, you don't have to tell me that!"
"I'm sorry!" Tooru automatically apologized for her apology.
"That's what I mean! Stop it!" Kyou looked annoyed. "Just go back to making the soup or whatever."
"Of course!" Tooru bowed slightly one last time and turned back to the soup, feeling a little bad. Kyou didn't take her apologies very easily, but she was pretty sure he meant well. It was hard to tell if he was really annoyed with her.
The shouji slid open again then. "Ohayou gozaimasu, Honda-san," said a tired, high tenor voice.
Tooru turned and smiled automatically at the slack face of Yuki. "Ohayou gozaimasu, Souma-kun," she greeted. Behind her she heard Kyou make a noise not unlike a cat hissing, and a moment later he had zoomed out of the kitchen – probably to go to the roof, Tooru guessed. Kyou was always challenging Yuki to fights, but when Yuki was half-asleep, Kyou was afraid of him. Yuki was a very good fighter when he was coherent, but he was an even better fighter when he was tired.
After all, Yuki, unlike Kyou, was not a morning person at all. He weaved into the kitchen as if not quite aware of what he was doing and opened the fridge to retrieve the orange juice. Tooru turned off the heat of the stove and handed Yuki a glass when he seemed to be having trouble remembering where they were kept. "Did you sleep well?" she asked while he poured himself orange juice.
"Aa," Yuki nodded slowly and drank the juice. Doing so seemed to help him wake up; he blinked and smiled at her that glowing, gentle smile of his as he lowered the glass, juice still staining his upper lip. "Did Honda-san sleep well, too?" He wiped his lip with his thumb.
Tooru felt a little heat in her cheeks and she beamed back up at him. "Yes! Thank you for asking," she nodded her head, barely a bow of gratitude.
"Of course," Yuki answered like it was nothing. He looked over at the soup. "Can I help?"
"Oh no, you don't have to!" Tooru waved her hands in front of herself. Accepting help on the food … it felt too much like she was being a burden, which she tried very hard not to be. After all, she was a guest in this home, having been taken in by Shigure and Yuki …
"No, it's no trouble," Yuki said gracefully like the 'prince' he was. "Should I get everyone some rice?"
"Um, yes, please," Tooru nodded and scooped the miso soup into bowls while Yuki did the same with the rice. "Thank you so much for your help," she added.
"It's nothing," Yuki shook his head slightly and picked up the full bowls of rice. "You do so many nice things for us, Honda-san. This is the very least I can do."
Tooru felt heat rush to her cheeks again. "Souma-kun is too kind," she said weakly.
Yuki merely smiled and crossed the hall with the rice. Tooru sighed, a happy smile coming to her lips, and got out three small bowls for the pickles. When Yuki smiled like that, Tooru felt like a very special person, just like when Kyou defended her in the face of Hiro's dry comments. She couldn't be sure, but it seemed like Yuki reserved that smile just for her.
"Why only three bowls?" Yuki asked when he came into the kitchen again, retrieving the miso soup.
"Ah, well, Kyou doesn't like pickles, so I wasn't going to give him a bowl," Tooru explained quickly.
Yuki snorted. "That bakaneko is just ungrateful."
"Oh, no, it's all right. I knew he didn't like pickles, so it was just my oversight," Tooru shook her head. "Please don't be upset with him, Souma-kun!"
Yuki looked vaguely annoyed, but he smiled a little. "All right, Honda-san. I'm sorry."
Relieved, Tooru smiled. She hated it when Yuki and Kyou really fought. They often argued; in a way that was reassuring (although she hated that she felt that way) because it meant that they were all right. They didn't argue very much when something was wrong. But when they came to blows, it was almost worse than when they didn't fight at all. "Please don't apologize, there is no reason," Tooru said finally, taking the pickles to the dining room; Yuki followed her. "Thank you!"
"Ah, ah, is that Tooru-kun's lovely cooking I smell?" cried Shigure, coming into the dining room with a bright smile on his face. "And I'm sure it tastes even better than it smells!"
Yuki-kun ignored Shigure, putting down the bowls of miso soup, but Tooru blushed again. "Thank you, Shigure-san. I did my best," she said.
"Of course, of course," Shigure sat at the end of the table opposite Tooru's seat. "Tooru-kun always does her best, ne?" He beamed.
"Un!" Tooru nodded sharply, kneeling at her end of the table before suddenly starting to get up again. "Ah, I forgot to get Kyou-kun!"
"I'll get the bakaneko," Yuki reassured her, putting a hand on her shoulder as if to remind her to sit down. "It will only be a moment." And before Tooru could protest, he had gone outside.
There was a moment of utter silence in the house while Tooru sat staring at her food and Shigure stared at her. "Hm, it will only be a moment now," Shigure said, putting his chin in his hand. And surely enough, right on cue—
"Oi, why should I listen to you, you damn mouse?"
"Honda-san asked us to come in and eat. Stop being an idiot, idiot cat."
"Are you coming or not? I'm sure Shigure would be happy to eat your food. It's not like you're grateful for it anyway."
A pause sprinkled with sputtering from Kyou followed. "Fine, then," Yuki's calm, disinterested voice said, "Stay out here." And there was a moment of silence; only the sound of the shouji sliding open and shut could be heard.
"K'SO NEZUMI!" Kyou's voice echoed, and there was stamping on the roof before the shouji opened and shut again with a squeak. Shigure grimaced.
"Aiya, it must have gone askew in the track," he sighed, sweatdropping slightly. His expression was nothing, however, compared to the expression that Tooru felt on her own face. Oh, they're fighting already …
But not too badly. Yuki stepped into the dining room calmly, followed by a heavily breathing Kyou. "Damn you," the cat snapped at the mouse.
"It's not my fault that you don't care about Honda-san's cooking," Yuki replied evenly, sitting down at his place.
"Um, it's okay, Kyou-kun, if you're not hungry …" Tooru began, trying to bring peace to the table. She really did hate it when Yuki and Kyou fought, even if it was reassuring. Shigure was just looking at them both with a knowing smile.
Kyou shot Tooru a glare. "Of course I'm hungry! And I do too care about her cooking, you damned mouse!" He sat down cross-legged with a huff. "Itadakimasu." He began to eat furiously, eyes closed and his expression angry.
But no one else ate. Tooru and Yuki both stared at Kyou. "Um, excuse me … did you just say you care about my cooking?" Tooru asked sheepishly. She had never thought that Kyou would say something like that so directly, even if he was angry.
Kyou looked up at her, confused, before recognition dawned on his face and his cheeks turned red. He swallowed his food. "Um … well, yeah," he admitted after a moment. But he quickly qualified the statement. "At least you're better than the nezumi." He jerked a thumb at Yuki.
"Oi, bakaneko, what are you implying?" Yuki asked, his eyebrow ticking a little.
"That you. Can't. Cook!" Kyou enunciated every word with a nasty grin.
"I can cook better than you," Yuki said with a deceptive calm.
"In your dreams!" Kyou snorted, standing up suddenly.
"Boys, boys," Shigure held out his hands, waving them to sit down. Kyou glared at him. "If you're going to fight, take it outside."
"Anou …" Tooru again grasped for their attention, and quickly the eyes of all three Souma's turned to her. "Um, thank you, Kyou-kun, for the compliment," she said, knowing she was blushing a little. As usual, the comment had been a little back-handed … but it was still a compliment.
Kyou sat back down with a thump and again his reddened. He looked away. "Ch', don't make such a big deal out of everything," he snorted.
Tooru just smiled. Okaa-san, did you hear that? Kyou-kun just complimented me! "Itadakimasu," she said eagerly, and Yuki and Shigure said the same with her.
"Why can't you just say 'you're welcome' like a normal person?" Yuki asked after swallowing a mouthful of rice.
"There's nothing to say 'you're welcome' for!" Kyou slurped some miso soup.
"Don't slurp, bakaneko, you look even worse than you actually are."
"Oi! Say that again!"
"Ahahahaha!" Shigure laughed. "It's always the same with you two!"
"Keep your nose out it, baka-inu," Kyou hissed, and Shigure laughed.
"Mm, this is really good soup!" Yuki beamed brightly at Tooru. "Thank you, Honda-san."
Tooru beamed back. "Thank you, Souma-kun!"
"This food is soooo good! Ah, I feel so lucky to have a lovely girl who is such a good cook make food for me every day," Shigure gushed before both Yuki and Kyou punched him for calling her a 'lovely girl'.
"Pervert!" they said in unison.
"That hurt," Shigure moaned from the floor.
Tooru laughed and ate. And she thought, Okaa-san, I'm so glad I'm here.
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Bakaneko – idiot cat/stupid cat
K'so nezumi – damned mouse
Baka-inu – idiot dog/stupid dog
Aa – sound of agreement
Un – sound of agreement
'Yo, Ohayou, Ohayou gozaimasu – morning/good morning
Author's Notes: Yeah, well, it started with no point and then I thought that it really should be more than just a chronicle of a typical morning in Shigure Souma's home, so I decided Kyou would say something that surprised everyone. Yeah.
I like Furuba because it's so … innocent. Everyone has dark pasts, but the curses prevent anything really super-romantic from occurring and the characters are just so adorable in their interactions.
I hope you all enjoy my take.