A/n: This is not my story and its Mireille-chan's! Just revising it for you guys so I hope you liked this as much as you liked the first version. I have my permission so don't think of anything that might get me into trouble. Some parts were changed due to OC-ness. And very, very long or I thought so. Heh.
Disclaimers: None is ours.
I sighed for the hundredth time this day while I packed my things. This is one of those hot summer days and all I wanted to do is just cool down. I should be really going on my way. I really should be going to visit Yoh's house today. I don't know what prompt me to go at a time like this. Just walking under the sun unprotected could burn my skin. I hated summer. I'd rather have snow...but snow won't fall at this time of the year. I shook my head and continued on my way.
"Horo-kun!" I spotted the very familiar Ainu as I walked and ran to him.
"Ah...T-Tamao-chan! Good to see you." He stammered and I wonder what is he blushing for? Maybe the sun.
"What are you doing here? Are you lost?" I asked.
"Well...ah, I, uh...well, yeah. I think I am lost. I was heading to Yoh's house. Darn the sun, it's damn hot!" He cursed. Yes, of course. The sun, right? A person like him wouldn't blush, there's no reason to.
"Where are you heading?"
"Oh?" I can see him grinning widely, now. Yes, right now. Did I say anything funny at all? I started to ask myself as we started walking. Horo-kun's attitude has always been a surprise to me. Every time I see him, he kept showing me different faces that I sometimes get confused if I really know him or not. Well, that is one thing I got used to and it doesn't matter because I've always enjoyed his company and as long as he likes the cakes I make. I'm lucky having him as my friend even though sometimes people don't actually appreciate his gentle side which is, well, rarely seen. Other people would even be surprised to know that he possesses such gentleness, but he does. He surely does. And I am one of those lucky ones that can see through him. Yup.
I glanced sideways at him. He had his hands on his head walking alongside at me, occasionally looking around. I let out a smile at him and continued on our way.
But one side of me refuses to acknowledge that Horo-kun is the only male in the world. I squinted hard and thought who might that be?
A voice whispered me that. Yes, Yoh-kun. For me, Yoh is perfect. I tugged at the white shirt I'm wearing. What am I exactly doing anyway? It seems that I have forgotten my reason for venturing Yoh's house at the wrong time of the day. Some part of me has been telling that there is something I wanted to say to him. But what is that?
"We're here!" Horo shouted as I gathered up my thoughts and went inside. I almost forgot I was with Horo-kun.
"Are you supposed to go inside without permission? Anna-san might-" I warned him but too late. He ran quickly inside and before I can even finish my sentence, Horo-kun had already collided with Anna-san.
Before matters get worse, I hurriedly followed and muttered an apology for Horo. "Anna-san, gomen nasai!" I bowed politely and sweat dropped. I hate it when Anna-san gets mad.
She raised her eyebrow at Horo Horo-kun. "Are you supposed to run in the hallway?!"
"Ah..sorry, hehehe." The Ainu scratched his head and stood up. Suddenly Yoh-kun apeared in the hallway with us and I can't help it but feel my face turn to scarlet for no reason at all. I glanced at him secretly and as always, Yoh-kun looks cute. I shook my head and be thankful that Anna-san can't read minds or I'll be dead. Bumping her in the hallway is one thing but showing admirations for someone's fiance is another, especially, Anna's fiance. I'm almost near my limits and it would do better to keep it low.
I gathered up my thoughts and plastered a shy smile on my face. "Hi."
"Horo Horo is here too? It's good to see you!" Yoh grinned at us. I fought the strong urge to hug him in front of Anna. "So what's up guys?" He asked us.
I stammered for a moment and fiddled again with my clothes. "Actually, I..uh, I just wanted to visit." Lame reason but that will work. I have forgotten why am I even here! Anna-san is giving me glares and I already feel chills running up and down my spine. Yoh-kun turned to Horo-kun and asked him.
"How about you?"
"Me? Nothing." Horo-kun seemed distracted at the moment and I saw his eyes dart to the direction of the dining room. Ugh, don't tell me he decided to eat again? I groaned inwardly as he darted to the room and shouted his sister's name. Pirika? Pirika is here?
"Yoh, why didn't you tell me that she's here?" Horo-kun wailed. I think he should at least be grateful that her sister is here.
"Sorry Horo, I forgot."
"That little brat is here and...you're cooking? You let this brat cook?!" Horo-kun poked Yoh. Why does he have to laugh like a lunatic?
"Stink head boy's here. Surprise, surprise."
Pirika-chan and Horo Horo started fighting again as always. They would be in trouble if this takes too long. Anna-san is starting to boil up now. I smiled a weak smile at the situation. Yoh-kun is beside me with his arms behind his head, his ever raidiant smile visible in his face. What is it that I wanted to tell him? I gulped and after mustering all the courage I have, acknowledged Yoh-kun's presence beside me.
"Uh, Yoh?" I timorously whispered.
"Can I talk to you for a while? Just by one minute?" I continued nervously.
Since when did my heart start beating 5000 times a minute? I'm shaking. No, I mean literally shaking!
You can do this Tamao.
I took a deep breath and started on something that I would regret for the rest of my life. "Um, Yoh-kun? Actually, I have to say something important."
"What's that?" It's good to know that he's ready to listen.
"About me, what I feel...well, I want this thing to be kept between us and please don't let others know."
"Ok. What about your feelings?"
"What if you had a crush? A crush older than you for two years and you are close friends. You have developed feelings for that person but you don't know her feelings for you?" I continued nervously. I'm trying to make this explanation very simple but...nothing is simple! Why is it so hard to explain! I waited for Yoh's reaction and hoped he understands. Oh please Yoh-kun, don't make this hard for me! I prayed inside and felt myself turn to water. I wanted to cry!
He nodded, which I don't exactly know what it meant. "So you're saying that I like someone but she doesn't know?"
I gulped. "Well, yes. But it's hard to say one's feelings to another right?"
"Exactly, what is your problem then?" He smiled a gentle smile as if assuring that everything will be alright.
"I...see," I cleared my throat, unable to continue. "I-I like...you. I like you, Yoh-kun." The heat suddenly rushed to my face. This is something that I would really regret all my life. What if he suddenly decided that he wants to avoid me?
"I-I'm sorry..." I muttered under my breath. I could swear tears swelling. "Would you avoid me because of that?"
"That's ok. No of course not. There's no reason to."
"Really? Then...you...do you like me?" Did that just came from my mouth? Stop being so conceited Tamao! I knew he liked Anna, but why did I have to ask questions with obvious answers?
"That's not what I meant Tamao." He suddenly became quiet. I shook my head, I can't look at him. "You know I like Anna ne? She had been my inspiration and she helped me through a lot. I may be weird for liking a girl who can be cold and harsh at times but..."
"Y-yes, of course."
"Do you understand me?"
"Hai." I just looked at him, not knowing what to say. I wasn't aware that tears that I had been trying to hide had already fallen. I don't know what to feel. To be happy for being able to say what I really feel, that I know a few people would dare? He understands ne? To be sad because I found out that he doesn't really like me? Besides, who am I to think or even dream for something such as Yoh's feelings? It was a stupid dream. But I have loved him.
"Don't cry, Tamao." He wiped the tears that rolled down my cheek. "Daijobu desu. Someday, you will find someone that you will love and will love you in turn. There's a perfect guy for you, you'll just have to wait." He gave me warm hug before he left, in effort to cheer me up which I accepted dearly.
Tamao, through her depression, didn't notice someone behind the door. He didn't mean to eavesdrop. It was an accident. He was startled with everything he heard but who's to say? Every once in a while people are forced to do something weird...or was it foolish.
He lingered on, thinking to himself and unusually serious. He didn't notice Tamao as she opened the door. Not until he felt her eyes staring at him.
"Horo-kun?" Tamao asked, startled. "What are you doing here?"
He focused his eyes on her. He can see that she cried. "You're crying right?" He asked out of concern. Tamao was shocked at the question and the unusual attitude Horo Horo was showing her. He was really, really serious. "Don't cry..."
He led Tamao to a big stone at the Asakura's yard and they sat silently. He offered her a handkerchief to wipe the tears that continued to roll down her cheeks.
"You don't look pretty when you are crying..."
Silence. Tamao didn't even replied to Horo Horo's statement. All they can hear was Tamao's sniffs as she composed herself slowly.
"Tamao-chan?" Finally, Horo Horo spoke.
"Is there anyway I could help?" Then again, Tamao stared at Horo Horo, studying him.
"None. Thank you for your concern."
Out of the deafening silence, Horo Horo screamed as if bitten by something. It was a shrill like no other. How is it that a boy like Horo Horo could scream like a girl??
"Ah! What's the scream for? Horo-kun?" Tamao stared agape at Horo Horo.
"You scream like a girl!" This time, Tamao laughed until her tummy ached.
"No I don't!" He blushed as he looked at Tamao. "You're not bad at all..."
Tamao stopped. "Huh? What do you mean?"
"Ah...nothing! Nothing at all! Ehehehe..."
"Sou ka. Ne Horo-kun?" Tamao suddenly lost her laughter and turned serious. At lost for something to do, Horo Horo picked up a pebble that was lying by and threw it at the fishpond. He was ready to listen to her, if to speak was something that she wanted.
"I was thinking, what if...you're in love? What are you going to do? Tell me..."
Taken aback, he asnwered, "Well, I don't know."
"Huh? You don't know?"
He shrugged. "Ok, don't laugh at me, Tamao-chan... but I haven't been in love before." He looked at the pink0haired girl earnestly.
"Oh...really? Sorry for mentioning it..."
Silence again. Another whole minute of silence and both of them are starting to feel awkward already.
"How does it feel?"
"How does it feel to be in love with someone?"
"I feel free in one way or the other and happy but... telling someone that you love him was never easy."
"So what will hppen if you tell him?" Horo Horo pretended he hadn't heard anything...that he didn't know anything at all.
"Sometimes, some persons will try to avoid you for no reason at all. But not all, it depends. If he understands you, then there's nothing unlikely to happen. Like him..."
"Him? Who's 'him'? You mean Yoh?" Horo answered weakly.
"Yes. I thought he was the one for me, a perfect guy...but I was wrong."
"So it is hard..."
"You've got the whole thing just perfect..." Tamao sighed.
"Tamao, uh, would you... ever forget your love? I mean, forgt Yoh? Is it possible for you?" Why does it seem suddenly strange for Tamao that Horo Horo is asking these kind of questions? Horo was never the one to put his nose on others business. He would rather pushed Tamao in the pond for the sake of having fun but...
"Maybe. But that would take time... why?" She asked looking at the Ainu.
"Well, I just don't know what to say..."
"Oh?" Tamao blinked and took his presence in.
"Ah...never mind. Maybe some other time... you'll know."
Was it me or Horo-kun's stomach is growling again? We stared at each other for a few seconds and burst out laughing. I feel better now. Horo-kun's is always fun to hang around with. We went inside to get foods and went on as if nothing happened between Yoh and me.
At 4:30 in the afternoon, I was laughing like a lunatic at Horo-kun's taunts. I guess his attitude had infected me already and I can't decide if that's really a good thing or not. And it was not until Pirika entered the room holding a tray of glasses and started teasing us, that I started to feel a little different and, rather concious. I looked at him and noticed that Horo-kun really had looks and well...well... I had to bow and keep myself from blushing. I let out a little smile as we continued chatting.
By night I was already slicing onions for Anna-san and I can't help but feel the tears in my eyes start to gather. Oh, I hate onions. Stupid of me too! I forgot to put in the vegetables! I ran to the range and didn't notice the slippery floor until I well, slipped. The next thing I know I was on the floor with Horo-kun on top of me.
"I'm sorry..." Horo-kun apologized, blushing as he stood and offered me a hand.
"It's okay." I took his hand and stood.
"Tamao-chan...are...are you hurt?" He asked turning back while scratching his head.
"No, it's ok. Nothing to worry about." I smiled at him assuringly. "Ah! My vegetables!" I ran an hurriedly closed the stove
"It smells good. You're a good cook!"
It suddenly felt different aroung us and I don't know why. What is happening? It always happened when Horo-kun is beside me. Did he has something to do with this?
"Tamao-chan? Tamao-chan? Something wrong?"
"Huh? AH! Nothing!" I continued slicing the onions and tears freely fell down. I can't help it!
"You're crying again?"
"Look! Onions made me cry, ok?" I sniffed.
"Yes." I can't understand why he keeps on staring at me. But I was careful not to let him know that I knew that he was looking at me.
"Has someone proposed to you yet?"
"What?" I was surprised at his sudden question. "Ah...no one, yet."
And everything went dead again. Does it always have to be like this?
"Ano...I," He started again. I said nothing and continued slicing the onions.
"...I...I like you." Huh? Wait, Tamao are you awake? Do onions have this effect? Scratch that. What? He just told me he liked me. What ami I going to say?! I don't want to hurt him...
"I-I know you like Yoh but I can't keep it anymore." Silence ensues. He was smiling at me and once again tears start to gather at my eyes. I dropped the knife and the carrot I was slicing. Then he added, "I won't force you. Shimpai shinaide..."
Why am I crying? What are these tears for? I can't actually say that he's just my friend. I don't know. I just don't know. I don't know what I'm feeling for him. He is so kind to me.
"You don't look pretty when you are crying..."
"Tamao, uh, would you... ever forget your love? I mean, forgt Yoh? Is it possible for you?"
"Maybe. But that would take time... why?"
"Well, I just don't know what to say..."
"Ah...never mind. Maybe some other time... you'll know."
What is the matter with onii-chan and Tamao-neechan? Why are they so quiet? This is not right.
"Why so quiet huh?" I asked the two who was pretending to be so indulged with their dinner.
"Tamao-chan? What happened?" I prodded. This is so weird, as in.
"Gah! Delicious foods make me deaf… Thanks for the food!" Tamao forcefully replied after some divine intervention. Onii-chan didn't even answer me which is waaay so unusual. Just what happened with this two??
"Yoh, wash the plates. I'm going to my room already." Anna reminded Yoh who groaned inwardly. I smiled and looked at Yoh. I think I'll just help him later and with these two??
Argh. I can't sleep. I was still thinking of what Horo-kun said. It's so hard to answer to someone and it's so hard trying not to hurt him. He had been so kind, caring, and thoughtful though he seems to be gluttonous most of the time and noisy. He had done ever thing that he could to help me.
So what's wrong with that, Tamao?"
I woke up lazily and arranged my bed. I am still lacking in sleep because of last night. I slept so late that I only had a few more hours to sleep. I heard voices outside and recognized them as Horo-kun and Pirika-chan's. Oh no! They are leaving already!
'We're going now! Bye!"
"Okay, take care!"
I ran; trying so hard to reach him just before they go on their way. No! Don't go! "Horo-kun!"
"Huh? Tamao-chan?" He turned just in time as I stopped in front of him. I may not be able to clear things last night, but one thing is clear to me. I can't let him go!
"I'm sorry, I made a mistake…" Tears fell down from my face again. But I don't mind it now; he is here for me to wipe it. I just know that.
He gave me solemn smile. "It's okay. We have to go now. We—"
"Wait Horo-kun, I…please don't go." I begged him.
"I like you! I like you too! I know that it's too late to say this now but…"
"Tamao-chan? You…like me?" He was surprised as I knew he would be. And I do like him!
This time, he smiled a genuine smile as he wiped my tears dry. He slowly raised his arms and placed them around me, enveloping me with his warmth. As he did so, a wave of happiness surged through me. It doesn't have to be a confession of love. Just having him near brings me an overwhelming feeling. And I thought only Yoh could make me happy? It was a foolish prospect.
I felt his heart beating fast. I brought my arms to his neck and embraced him back. How could I have noticed this only now?
My perfect guy has been with me all along.
A/n: Finally done! This is the first time I ever made a complete fluff story! (minus the plot coz it's not mine) and the first time I ever made a Horo x Tamao! For all the fans, I hope you liked the revision and enjoyed it as much as I enjoyed making the last part. Please read and review! – riyeth J