Boys Before Flowers

X.

      "If you think that for one second, Ishida Yamato," the mixed bouquet of wild flowers shook between her fingers, "that I'll forgive you because of…of…these."

      Yamato watched with half pity, half amusement as Tachikawa Mimi slammed the bouquet onto his desk.  She had flushed from a delicate pink to a pale red, her most dangerous color.  He almost smiled, but opted rather to concentrate on looking apologetic.

      "This is war, Ishida."  She whispered darkly, fist clenched in a dainty sort of way.  In that moment, any attempt to seem regretful suddenly vanished.  His clever eyes met her gaze, tiptoeing the edge of daring and insightful.

      "Are you sure you want to go there, Mimi-san?"

She kissed him.  Or rather, brushed her mouth against his.  For kisses usually relay some sort of affection.  Judas kiss.  Ferocious eyes, full of malice.

      His eyes were closed meditatively, arms crossed, jaw set.

      "Then," said Yamato, "let the games begin."

I.

      "So," Yagami Taichi sat backwards in his chair, "I heard you're at war with Tachikawa."

      The hum of his bass stopped suddenly, and Yamato did not meet his gaze.  He continued to finger the chords and alternately adjust the speakers, but had nothing to say.

Taichi grinned.

      "She never could keep a secret."  He continued, yawning.  "Sora told me an hour after I got home."  He spoke, of course, of Takenouchi Sora, Taichi's four-year girlfriend and a mediator between the warring parties.  When Yamato remained wordless, Taichi shuffled in his chair impatiently.

      "So what are you going to do?"
Again the sound of the bass ebbed, and Yamato examined the ceiling as if it held the secrets of heaven.

      "Fight, I guess." He went on strumming, "Guerilla tactics, cannons, whatever."

      "If you lose…"

He didn't stop playing.  "I won't."

II.

      Tachikawa found it hard to believe that army print clothing hardly came in pink, these days.  However, Ikeda and Suzuhara could hardly take the threat so lightly.

      "Mimi-chan…" said Suzuhara Yumi, her eyes wide with disbelief at her cool attitude, "Are you sure you can handle war with Ishida?"

Mimi looked over her shoulder.

      "Are you afraid of him?" She inquired delicately.  Suzuhara looked as though she would have a heart attack.  Ikeda Nanako turned bright red.          

      "He is a scary upperclassman!"  Mimi stared at their anxious faces, threw her head back and laughed.

      "Scary?" Her laughter died, and she turned back to the computer screen with an amused smile. "I have known Ishida.  He is not so scary these days."

      She said it as though it had been a silly answer to an equally silly question.  And they nodded, but did not look entirely convinced.

      "Mimi-chan…" said Suzuhara, still maintaining an anxious look.

Mimi interrupted,

       "I will say, in the words of someone older, and uglier than I."  She paused dramatically, "The better question is, can he handle war with me?"

Ikeda and Suzuhara exchanged glances.

She only smiled.

III.

      "Iie…" Sora leaned back into the sofa.  She looked exhausted.  "I don't think I can contend with this war."

      "War seems like a strong word." Said Hikari.  They waited, side by side, for Taichi to return home, meanwhile idling through various television programs.  The younger of them wrinkled her nose at the peculiar dish bubbling on screen.

      "Amateur cooking show?" Shaking her head, she absently flipped to another channel. "Anyway, I doubt those two will get out of hand-"

      "I wish!" Sora moaned unhappily.  "Mimi is the most dramatic person I know.  And Ishida?  He's not so different from Taichi and his Idiot Macho Notions."

Hikari stared for a moment, covered her mouth and laughed.

      "You're right!" She whispered, gasping, holding her stomach.  "You're so right."

Somehow lightened, Sora snickered to herself.  Their laughter died after a moment, and Hikari, still smiling, inquired,

      "But what kind of war will it be?"

IV.

dial

ring

ring

"Yo."

"Yo, Yamato.  It's Taichi."

"Taichi…it's B Flat…what's going on?"

"I talked to Sora.  She talked to Ikeda, who talked to Suzuhara, who-"

"I do have rehearsal sometime next century…"

"Tachikawa wants to know the grounds."

Distracted silence.

"Yamato-"

"Let her decide."

"But-" click.

A sigh.  An aggravated sigh.

dial

ring

"Moshi-moshi?"'

"Sora-chan."

"Oh, Tai-yo.  Have you talked to Ishida-"

"Yeah.  He said to let Tachikawa decide."

"What?  That's strange."

"Mm."

"OK then.  I'll call her, then I have tennis."

"I have soccer.  Walk you home maybe?"

"Maybe.  If not, I'll call later.  Okay?  Ja."

"Ja." click.

dial

ring

ring

ring

"Na, Mimi's cell phone."

"Ikeda-chan?  Is Mimi there?"

"Oh yeah, please wait a moment."

Shuffle.

"-rigatou Yumi-chan.  Hallo?"

"Mimi-chan.  This is Sora."

"Oh!  I thought you had tennis."

"I do.  But I called to tell you the news.  About Ishida."

Silence.

"Mimi-chan?"

"Yes."

"He said that you should decide."

"How polite." Yawn. "What's today?"

"Wednesday."

"Then he will be surprised for Friday."

"Friday?  But, Mimi-"

"Don't worry!" Laugh. "It's not too bad –oh!  Someone's at the door.  I will see you after school tomorrow, okay?  Sora-chan?"

"O…okay.  Ja."

"Bai bai!" click.

pause.

dial

ring

ring

"YAMATO VOICEMAIL"

beep

"Yamato-kun, it's Sora.  Tachikawa says Friday."

A sigh.

"Be surprised."

click.

End of Act I.

So, this is the first part.  I've already started the third, but I'm trying to pace myself, see?  Um, if you like this, please review, and I will post the second part.  It's been so long since I've written anything…did you miss me?  Hearts to you, Artemis.