Boxers' Café.

Chapter 8.

Misao stepped into the café with apprehension, wondering if anyone would question her stay with Enishi, since she had not called them for two weeks. Misao had already met up with Soujiro, but didn't discuss much, claiming that she was in a rush to see Aoshi. Walking towards Yumi, she offered a smile of acknowledgment.

"Yumi!" Yumi nodded and gave a small wave, before she finished taking the order of a lively couple in the corner. Misao always wondered if Yumi ever got lonely since her husband died in a combusting building a few years ago. She had learnt from Okon and Omasu that Yumi was about to bear their child before she heard the devastating news, but there was a miscarriage shortly afterwards. Misao never discussed with Yumi directly since it was a topic that was almost never mentioned. All that Misao was supposed to know that Yumi was working with Aoshi, because they were cousins. Even though she never had a baby, she was the mother hen in this den.

"So you're back. Okon and Omasu missed you," Yumi informed in her casual manner, "I see you've managed Enishi since you haven't sent emergency messages here like you usually do."

"He's okay to live with, still arrogant though!" Misao pouted, feigning as if she disliked living with him when it was the total opposite. She had not wanted to come back, but she did. At the mention of Okon and Omasu, they came running towards Misao for a big bear hug.

"You look as healthy as ever! That million dollar man sure has tricks up his sleeves doesn't he?" Okon giggled. Misao waved her off.

"I just don't have to work at a café…I work at a local flower shop…less stress and slave work, but that man is an entire job himself." Yumi gave a disbelieving glance towards Misao's direction before heading off to the kitchen. Both ladies sped off to wait on their tables, and Misao was left by herself again. She was beginning to feel queasy in seeing Aoshi again, maybe it was guilt? She didn't know, but she was sure as hell that she wasn't going to tell him that she was out partying with Enishi or the fact that he was sleeping in her bed…Aoshi might just go ballistic.

"Misao?" Misao nearly screamed, but kept it in. Calming herself down, she thrust a hand in front of her chest.

"Geez! Why can't you just come around like a normal person? What are you? A ninja?" she scolded, "You're going to give me a heart attack one of these days!"

"Sorry," Aoshi chuckled, "It's just fun to do. Come on, I haven't seen you for a while…" Aoshi signaled her to follow him to his office, like usual. Trailing him, she began formulating ideas of how she would go around the subject if he questioned…she was never good a lying, it always made her stutter. Finding herself in the chair and Aoshi sitting on the table top with his arms crossed, she began rethinking if he would see through her or not.

"So tell me," Aoshi started, "about Enishi…" Misao bit her bottom lip before replying.

"He had an ex-girlfriend by the name of Kurenai, but they broke up by means that I don't know of. He only works for three to four hours a day at most…usually from 10 am to 1 or 2 pm. He owns a tiger by the name of Yuki in his backyard with a full-fledged license. His office has high security, and I can't seem to break it…He owns four cars, a black BMW 3 Series, a white Acura NSX, a navy blue Honda Civic, and another silver BMW M3 Convertible. His job is at the International Media Network, he didn't tell me specifically his job, however." Aoshi's face became serious suddenly.

"That's all?" Aoshi interrogated. Misao meekly nodded.

"Oh and Anji—" Misao started, but Aoshi waved his hand.

"I've already received notice that Anji was contacted by Enishi."

"I see…"

"Enishi has insisted that he'll pay for your expenses, since you're not that expensive to begin with…"

"He likes my cooking, I think," Misao commented dryly. Aoshi knew immediately that there was more to the general facts that she gave him.

"Are you hiding information from me, Misao?" Misao's face reddened at his question, consequently there was no need to answer him. He soaked the information slowly, scrutinizing her every action to Enishi's name.

"The other information isn't very relevant to your tournament anyways…" Misao reasoned. Sitting in front of her silently, Aoshi studied her face's features, wondering if his prediction was correct. Smirking, Aoshi hopped of his desk, bending over her chair with both of his arms beside the armrest, trapping her.

"That's fine…you always do your job like I want you to…" he drifted as he moved his face closer to her to the point where he felt her breath on his skin, "I miss you…" Leaning in, he dipped his head to kiss her, but Misao moved her face. He found himself kissing her cheek instead. Aoshi moved away from her, her eyes were diverted from his gaze.

"I-I have to go…" Misao excused before getting up and shutting the door quietly. Somehow she felt some loyalty to Enishi even if they had not established any real ground of a relationship…but for the first time, she didn't let Aoshi kiss her. She used to let him steal a kiss even after they had broken up—she had still loved him then. She gripped her shirt, but now…now it was different, she didn't love him in that way anymore and it wasn't fair to her to begin with. Aoshi had always treated her as if she was a nuisance at times, and sometimes childish…but Enishi…when he lusted after her, he made her feel like a woman, not like something that would break easily. She just felt like they were on equal grounds, because he brought out the best in her. She may have been grateful for all the things Aoshi had ever provided her, but it didn't make her his slave…she realized that now. Walking out on the street, she noticed that all she wanted to do at the moment was go home and lie next to Enishi…and she ran.

Inside his office, Aoshi pulled out a rusted album from beneath his desk and examined its bind, noticing all the bumps and bruises that the book had attained throughout the years. Aoshi flipped through their album—pictures of Misao and himself where he gave half smiles next to her brilliantly shined ones. There weren't that many since he didn't enjoy taking pictures, but the ones that were there reminded him good memories of picnics at the local park, watching the sunset and counting the constellations. Now that it was gone, he missed it when he didn't even know he needed it at all. He flipped to the next page and there was a picture of Misao and himself lying haphazardly across the couch in front of the TV. The gang had caught them in each other's arms because they had stayed late up at night playing scrabble. He grinned, there was a speckle of drool coming out of Misao's mouth that gave more hilarity to the picture or the picture of them holding hands at the beach. He never knew how much a woman could possibly make him feel so—complete.

At that moment in time, he wouldn't have cared much if the business went under, because he would've still had Misao to build it back up with. Aoshi stared at her smiling face, wishing had he only smiled back at her those days, regretting how he rarely showed emotion around her—afraid that his pride would get hurt. In the end, that was the choice, his pride or Misao.

Shutting the album shut, he recalled how he met her and how they came to be. Soujiro went to the same college as she did and they were dating. Soujiro had been quite subtle in his movements with Misao since he lacked experience with girls. People would probably categorize him as being a shy boy, but Misao met him more than halfway. She had initiated everything else after Soujiro had left a love letter in her locker. Aoshi remembered the conversation that Soujiro had gotten from Megumi and Yumi on love and such. He had to listen to that blabber as well since he was dating Megumi at the time and that was how he knew of Misao. He met her once in a while when she came by the café—he didn't have much of an interest in her until he found her crying in the bathroom stalls after closing time.

Beauty queen of only eighteen
She had some trouble with herself
He was always there to help her
She always belonged to someone else

He heard it as if it were the sound of water pattering on a window and to satiate his curiosity, he had peeked on her without her noticing and he never forgot how she looked that day, curled in a ball in the corner of the bathroom with puffy eyes and tears falling unashamedly down her cheeks with sniffles coming out every now and then. He had that sudden urge to comfort her that day, but decided not to since it was not his place to do—it was Soujiro's. Aoshi left the bathroom, feeling an awkward feeling awakening within him and her weeping face haunted him throughout the month.

I drove for miles and miles
And wound up at your door
I've had you so many times but somehow
I want more

Megumi had proceeded with severing of their relationship to date Sanosuke, but to her surprise, he didn't mind. His thoughts was too preoccupied by images of Misao crying. For some odd reason it disturbed Aoshi, because he understood how it felt to be all alone with no one to run to. He understood how lonely it must've felt to cry all by herself at night in the bathroom of a café that she worked at, so maybe that was why he came those nights. To comfort himself that she was not alone when she cried, that someone did hear her, that someone did care—that he understood.

I don't mind spending everyday
Out on your corner in the pouring rain
Look for the girl with the broken smile
Ask her if she wants to stay awhile
And she will be loved
And she will be loved

She had begun working at the café alongside with Soujiro as a part-time job, always so happy on the outside but during closing time when she thought nobody was around, she cried in the bathroom where he sat by the other wall, listening. Aoshi didn't bring the matter up to Soujiro since it was Misao's decision to inform her boyfriend that she was having troubles. Aoshi knew that Soujiro had not encountered problems within their relationship since he showed no signs of ill temper, but even then, his usual face gave no signs of anything at all.

Tap on my window knock on my door
I want to make you feel beautiful
I know I tend to get so insecure
It doesn't matter anymore

One night while walking silently past the bathroom stall, he found the door locked and nobody within the building, he had planned to spend the evening listening to her cry, but found her nowhere in sight. The store was locked and everything was tidy as it should've been and he should've been happy that she was no longer crying in the stalls where he had taken as an obligation to be. For some odd reason, he felt a bit disappointment that she wasn't there that night. Had he been there to comfort her, or had he been there to have her presence comfort his? He left the café in search of her in the stormy night with a tint of worry in his conscious.

It's not always rainbows and butterflies
It's compromise that moves us along
My heart is full and my door's always open
You come anytime you want

I don't mind spending everyday

Out on your corner in the pouring rain

Look for the girl with the broken smile

Ask her if she wants to stay awhile

And she will be loved…

And she will be loved…

And she will be loved…

And she will be loved…

Upon walking around the neighborhood with an umbrella and his trench coat, he was about to discontinue his search, but there she was. The rain droplets drizzled onto the old, paint-rusted mustang where Misao laid within the middle of a deserted parking lot behind a department store. Even though the window's rain blurred her image inside, he knew it was her. He found that the mustang's door was open and slowly unfastened it—she had not noticed. She laid in the backseat shivering without a blanket on the old tired leather torn by years of usage and that was when he noticed that she was bleeding. Pushing the front seat up, he gathered her into his arms and carried her to his apartment that was close by. Soujiro was out of town, so it was out of the question to have him care of his girlfriend. She was a sickly pale and her left eye was swollen.

I know where you hide
Alone in your car
Know all of the things that make you who you are
I know that goodbye means nothing at all
Comes back and begs me to catch her every time she falls

He couldn't help but kiss her forehead with a silent promise that she would be loved. He had stitched up her gash, dabbing it with antiseptic and wrapping it in cloth bandages. Staying up all night, he watched over her, holding the icepack above her eye to not irritate it. He sat up all night listening to her talk in her sleep, reliving her nightmares, visiting the memories of the past—with all of that he sat there silently listening to all she had to say.

Tap on my window knock on my door

I want to make you feel beautiful

I don't mind spending everyday

Out on your corner in the pouring rain

Look for the girl with the broken smile

Ask her if she wants to stay awhile

Aoshi had watched as she groggily opened her eyes, fear in her eyes that she was somewhere beside her car. He remembered…she hadn't recognized who he was with a swollen eye and the other one was still hazy, but it didn't matter much. He wanted her and she wanted to be loved. He had kissed her hungrily and she kissed him back mistaking him for Soujiro. He didn't mind, if it comforted her that he was Soujiro that night, then he would be Soujiro. She complied with his every touch with a small moan, sending shivers down his back.

And she will be loved…

He had slipped down to give her sweeping kisses across her neck, stopping at her earlobe where he sucked it while her hands roamed his bare chest. His hands had slipped beneath her shirt, nimble hands massaging her breasts. Carefully halting his kisses, he slowly pulled off her shirt, revealing her petite form to him. Without much hesitance, he kissed her everywhere reveling in her small gasps, lightly stroking her back, avoiding the gash on the side of her stomach. He had taken off his clothes by then, letting soft skin graze his as he held her fragile form, enjoying the feel of having her so close. She had given him timid kisses on his lips before indulging in his ministrations. He had said it so many times that night. 'I love you' he would claim every time he kissed her, every time she moaned, every time he touched her. He would mend her aching heart tonight as the fire blazing within their hearts consumed them both.

And she will be loved…

She threw her head back as he sucked on the pert nipple, his hands dangling nearer to her nether regions, her hands grappling his back for support in fear that she might've awoken from a dream. Misao drew in breath as Aoshi dipped his finger into her, rubbing his thumb on her clitoris, sending a jolt of electricity throughout her body. She bit his shoulder as she felt something twisting in joyous delight until it burst into an array of fleeting ecstasy in her womb. Feeling that she was moistened enough, Aoshi cautiously laid her back onto the bed with himself being on top, he entered her, feeling a sense of completion. Putting his weight onto his elbows, he thrust into her gently afraid that her gash would reopen if he went in any stronger. Heavy breaths blew from her bruised lips as he gently pushed into her, restraining himself from just driving himself into her because of her injuries. With her small hands, she blindly reached out for his face, kissing his stubbed jaw line, running her hands through his thick hair. He felt her about to climax, her muscles had begun spasming as her gasps got louder until she finally tightened around him. He groaned as he thrust in a few more times before orgasming himself.

Reaching up to hold his neck, Misao whispered, "Thank you…Aoshi…" She had known after all and they had slept in blissful comfort that night. From following her previous times, he had discovered her bruises came from her only relative—her brother. He was a drug addict and owed a lot of money. He beat her because she didn't want to give her savings away. After that night, Aoshi had confronted Miwa and threatened him to never come near Misao again, giving a good punch to the face. He had offered Misao a place to stay if she worked at the café. The following days were chaos for Aoshi and Misao, since Soujiro came back. Whenever they found themselves alone in the hallway, they couldn't help but give each other passionate kisses or when they were in public, there were longing eyes that gave furtive glances. Misao couldn't take the guiltiness, before she confessed to Soujiro. To her amazement, Soujiro had known, he was just waiting for her to confront him. They were never happier when they came out into the public.

And she will be loved…

Aoshi remembered. He remembered everything. Their walks at the beach, the kisses, the morning wake-ups, and he found himself in his room where her scent no longer lingered. Lying on his bed, facing the ceiling, he regretted it. He regretted picking his honor over Misao. It seems like he couldn't remember what he chose over Misao to lose her. It tormented him every night when he would reach over to the left side of the bed and she wasn't there. A folded piece of paper fell out of the old album and onto the ground next to his feet. Bending down to pick it up, he unwrapped it and it was Misao's writing.

"I love you, Aoshi," the note said with a drawn on heart beside his name.

"Where did we go…?" he asked the empty room.

It's so hard to say goodbye...


Thanks for all the reviews and the support. I really appreciate it. I thought that I'd leave behind Aoshi and Misao's history together as a goodbye gift until I come back. The song I used for this chapter is called "She Will Be Loved" by Maroon 5. It's a really nice song and everyone should at least hear it once!

You can watch the music video of "She will be loved" by Maroon 5 on launch .com you just need your yahoo sign-in name & password. Since you're there, you can go search for the artist The Cure and check out all of their songs (Cut Here, Pictures of You, Boys Don't Cry, Just Like Heaven, Letter to Elise etc). They're a band that has survived since the 80s and I believe that they're still in style now, since their latest and old songs are still being heavily played on the radio being in with top tens. I don't know, it's just a recommendation. I like the new wave 80's music, and I was just a baby during that time…but hey, old songs still rock even if you never heard it come out for the first time.

"My December" by Linkin Park is one of my all time favorites, which you can find on your window's media player. You can go to download .com and search for windows media player to download the latest version (I think it's version 9 at the moment). As for people who have windows media player version 9 already, you just need to go to Media Guide and type in "My dsmbr" by linkin park and it'll find you the mp3 for it. I really recommend people to listen to this song, because it's sounds so BEAUTIFUL! Somehow it reminds me of Enishi, I guess it's the snow thing?

For everyone who watches Rurouni Kenshin, I recommend that you also try watching Naruto, because it's the best anime I've ever seen so far. There isn't teenage drama or anything, it just has to do with more universal ideas. It's mainly about a boy named Naruto who is training to be a ninja and you follow him throughout his training sessions etc. He's one funny boy that I wouldn't mind having as a kid brother, but I have to say Kakashi Hakate is the most liked character. If you're interested, you can download all of Naruto episodes from 1 to 104 right now and manga (I love reading the manga because it has all the uncaptured scenes from the series, but the series still follows it pretty well) if you'd like from In order to download these episodes, you have to download what is called "bitorrent" from Narutofan .com (where the episodes and manga are too) and it's not that bad, because the quality of the video is very good, like a dvd you could say. You also need to sign up with them, making a user name and a password, all those stuff, but it's soooooo worth it.

For some odd reason, I didn't write anything about Enishi in here, but hey he'll be in the next chapter and this time it'll give you a little more info on Aoshi and Enishi…and the true death of his sister! gasps Eh, I haven't written it yet, but I hope to get it updated in November after my college applications are done and over with then I can relax and brainstorm. No fear! I'll be back sometime in November with a nice long chapter!