The House [ Fujitaka (CCS) ]

v.1, 20070614

a/n: N years ago I tried writing a series about Fujitaka, and one of the ideas I had for it was, Fujitaka and his children moved to Tomoeda only after Nadeshiko's death.

Fujitaka watched the moving van disappear around the bend before he returned to the living room to pick up the last box and his car keys. Now that the house was bare, he could clearly hear the strange rumbling sound, the grinding of wheel against bare wooden floor; it was his son, steering his baby sister around in her pram. Just as Fujitaka looked up, a young boy and a bright pink pram appeared from behind the kitchen door and crossed the hall into another room. Whirr whirr whirr. Out of the room and into another. Whirr whirr whirr.

I would love a house big enough for children to run around in.

"Touya-kun," Fujitaka called out, "we're about to leave."

Touya soon emerged with the pram, inside which baby Sakura was fully absorbed in chewing on her favorite stuffed bear. Fujitaka smiled at them. "Well, shall we?"

There was only one box left to carry, the most important one -- magazine clippings, framed photographs, negatives, polaroid shots, scribbles. Little notes. Small pieces of paper left on his desk on the sly, unrolled then pressed in between the pages of his teaching manual. To my favorite professor: let's go home together! I will be waiting near the gate. P.S. I love you so much.

Fujitaka carefully locked the front door while Touya, half-climbing into the car, busied himself with strapping Sakura into her baby seat. Fujitaka then looked at the roof, the closed windows, the washed out, uneven stone steps, the small garden with its makeshift swing, then walked back to the car. The new town was called Tomoeda. It would take them five hours to get there.

"Father," Touya quietly said as the engine started, "it's saying goodbye."

"Hmm?"

"The house."

Fujitaka glanced at his dark-haired son intently staring out the window, then gazed at the picture frame lying face down on the dashboard. "Can you say thank you for us?"

Touya's eyes closed slightly.

"Say thank you," Fujitaka said, as he backed the car out of the driveway, "thank you, for seeing us through so many happy years."

After the car made its way down the road, in the small garden of the now empty house, the makeshift swing started swaying to and fro, then as suddenly as it moved, hung perfectly still.