by Miko-chan
Summary: And my last advice...never, EVER forget that it is never too late to give someone an UMBRELLA!

Author's notes: This would be composed of five one-shot stories about various couples. It must have three main contents: a) The umbrella b) The darn rain sneeze and lastly, c) The romance...Make sure you have a blanket there. This fic is dedicated to those who continue to support any of these pairings

Standard Disclaimers Apply.

An orchestra of sounds, created by the creak of the crickets, the sway of the branches the whip of the vines and the large drops of water continued to sing its haunting song.

But as beautiful the melody plays, it still does not lure one particular audience to sleep.

Upon the large willow lies a young maiden, bathed in mud stains and draped with that velvety crimson bandanna slung across her shoulders to provide her warmth. Everyone knew her, despite this feeble state. This woman was feared for her frosty aura and piercing glare. No soul ever dares to disobey her commands, for she is affiliated with death and the afterlife. Indeed, a force to reckon with.

But in some sense, there was the strangeness at how her dark eyes seems to glaze to stare at that flooded road ahead of her and the slackened grip on the crimson, drenched stopwatch.

Earlier that afternoon, she enforced another of her usual light exercises for him, knowing that he was slacking somewhere to sleep. With an authoritative glare and one curt word, he stood up, complained with a look of unease and proceeded to do his task. It was to run laps all the way back to the Asakura household and to return to the same destination near the peak within an hour. Unexpectedly, a sudden downpour of rain occurred while lingering in the same spot for him to return back. Despite her keen senses, she failed to realize that slight change in temperature or the twinge of humidity in the breeze.

She knew that it was totally useless to lean on the sturdy aging roots of this thick, stemmed tree. It is foolish to depend on the broad sheaves of leaves piled on each other to protect her from getting wet. However, it was better to risk herself to be taken away with landslides or to disturb the residing turbulent spirits in the mountains of Izumo.

This is why these peaky tops are the most typical, strategically ideal areas to train. It is because the sharp precipices, the endangering boulders and the chilly atmosphere that the myriad of the wildlife in this impenetrable natural fortress.

But for today, it seems, the place is unbearable.

When they started earlier, the gaps between the dense layers of leaves were in the hue of sky blue. As it shifted from the color of mourning gray, now the horizons seemed to be a bleak starless night. Alone in this coldness, besides from the joining medley of the toads, she never felt this pathetic...

Because she was still holding that damn stopwatch.

As if, her grip tightened in response with her thoughts, this could save her.

She was clinging to those flying numbers, swiftly changing in a blink of an eye.


...That stupid moron.

Her fingers idly wiped the faint drizzle that fell on the screen, tracing circles on its smooth surface. Her onyx orbs, which were soft recently, turned into hard granites. Her breathing was labored and her heartbeat was slowing down in fatigue. She knew that slumber was too inviting to resist right now...

In her head, she thought of ways to disentangle every part of his limbs.

In her chest, she thought of ways that might have happened while on his way here.

Her blood was boiling in some sickening feeling that she felt rising up in her lungs, that she knew that her skin was turning those cooling raindrops into steam.

Yet she knew better that beneath her sleep-heavy eyelids that a foreign sting painfully brims.

That barrier of scorching ice and her masks of marbles were crumbling before her.

Because of him. Because of him, that good-for-nothing...

Vehemently, she cursed herself for wandering again around in her mind for the nth time.

And then, finally, the drops begun to slow down its strumming rhythm. Leaves were beginning to sprung like the arrival of spring, only drooping sporadically once in a while from the gradual falling fluid remains.

It stops.

It was always like this.

Her stronghold, as easily it ruptured earlier, quickly returned to its places and repair itself thrice faster than it broke. She loathed in her very being those things that always drowned her without any inhibition.

These so-called...emotions, right?

Putting all those trashy notions somewhere in the back of her head, she pushed herself up and grabbed the slick, lichen-covered trunk. Deciding that it might be already safe to go back this time because the rain---

The roll of her thoughts were cut short as a slight rustle beside the tree made her body rigid and alert, clutching now instead to the dark mauve beads clinging on her slim neck.

But as soon as that familiar, comforting ki finally registered in her mind...

She could not explain...

...that sudden rush of relief.

From the bushes emerged a young man with that relaxed smile, that almost tense grin and that uncomfortable scratch of his head. In his eyes, masked by the horrified glimmer, was the anxious concern that she usually takes for granted.

And he held with his soil-stained hand, was an umbrella, tattered with its rod nearly bent.

Her thumb pressed on that red, protruding button.

Four hours.

Forty eight minutes.

Fifty-three seconds.

"You're late."

"Ah!" He exclaimed with an iota of fear. "Gomen...Gomen!" He was now fiddling with the untamed mahogany locks at the base of his neck. "I grabbed an umbrella somewhere when the rain started at the base of the mountain." Nervously, he took a glance at the obviously wrecked compact shelter." But the ground suddenly shook and fell, so I think I lost--Ah, Anna?"

His chatter ended as his coal warm orbs scrutinized the freezing stare of his unpredictable fiancé. Her hands were gripping so hard on that poor cracking, red watch while her other hand was balled into a fist. Expecting that any time his face would be unrecognizable with lumps, he flinched when she raised her arm...

And swiped the umbrella out of his hand.

"Idiot." She muttered, her foot falls creating mud splashes on the ground.

But she could not care less.

She never really understood how she fell for him in the first place.

Why she always worries about him.

Why she always accepts what he offers to her so effortlessly.

Why she trusts him so much.

And why...why can she believe in such a dimwit like him.

It was odd, to savor that warm sensation that rose up to thaw the cold from this darn rain.

With a pointed look, she rose a golden, archaic eyebrow. "I'm cold."


He took off his wrinkled, dirty cream polo and wrapped it around her pale shoulders. His attention riveted on the process, he failed to notice that small smile that was framed with those pale amber locks and crystalline raindrops.

Dedicated to EneriRenie. Ate Reen, sorry ha? Matagal ng delayed tong fic na ito.

I know that Stuck started long ago with a stormy September two (?) years ago. The concept of this fic might be old and predictable, but it does made my mind at ease because I love writing under the rhythm of the rain.

Tapos na Stuck! Yay. I wanna thank you all those people who reviewed 'Stuck' in the past. You don't know how much I appreciate your reviews, as this kept me holding on to write this fic even though it is long overdue.

Now I return to my Milo ice candy.