I heard quite the bustle in the private Ootori hospital. I wondered what it was all about.
I was chronically ill, and the Ootori group had been paying for my treatments in exchange for my service as a priestess to the hospital.
So it was only natural that I hurried to the room to catch a glimpse of my newest patient.
What I saw was quiet a surprise: the youngest Ootori—Kyoya. His face twisted in pain, it seemed from his chart that he had broken two ribs and punctured a lung.
At the sight of me, the nurses, doctors, and various family members cleared the room. Kyoya had long been unconscious from the pain, and I took that as my chance to work.
Physically weak though I might be, I was actually very powerful spiritually, which was why the Ootori had hired me.
I leaned over and silver light flowed from my fingertips and sank into his bruised and broken skin. Slowly his bones knitted together and his skin returned to its pink perfect color.
I breathed out—I didn't realize I'd been holding my breath—and collapsed in the chair.
It didn't matter that I was sick. I had just saved the Ootori son. I didn't have to worry about anything anymore.
Kyoya had never seen a priestess before.
He vaguely knew that she was Kuri Hikawa, and she was employed by his father. But he didn't know the details of her top-secret work—until today.
She was asleep after using her power on him and he took a moment to study her. She was actually quite beautiful, in a fragile sort of way.
She had long dark hair to her waist, but right now it was billowing all around her face. Her skin was pale like porcelain and her cheeks were littered with sparkles.
He remembered that her eyes were big and blue, striking.
As she stirred, he sat back, not wanting her to know how fascinating he found her.
"Ah. You are awake." Kuri said. "My name is Kuri Hikawa.
"I am Kyoya Ootori." Kyoya said. As if she didn't know.
"Kyoya Ootori." Kuri said. "It's nice to meet you. It is hard being the youngest, ne?"
"You know something of it?" Kyoya asked.
Kuri smiled. "I know a little something of everything. I had been hoping to see you, Kyoya."
"I see." Kyoya said warily. "Why?"
"To give you some advice." Kuri said. "Some given to me long ago."
"And what is that?" Kyoya said.
"Stop playing your role." Kuri said, closing her eyes again, and a silver spark lit her hands. "Make your own destiny. The path forms as you walk forward. It's your choice. Make the right one."
Kuri looked up and locked eyes with him, smiling.
"I know how it feels to be trapped, unable to move, by people that seem infinitely stronger." Kuri shook her head. "You have to find strength of your own to get up and start walking."
Kyoya smiled at her. "You are an intriguing woman, Kurisuta."
"I suppose so, Ootori Kyoya." Kuri said. "You might answer a question I have."
As she left, Kyoya found himself feeling something strange—he hoped he would see this priestess again.