Twas the night before Horo's Birthday.
This is my first fanfic ever here so please be kind and please read and review.
NOTE: Edited on September 24, 2008.
--Part 1: The gift--
It was already nine in the evening and still Tamao couldn't sleep. It cannot be the noise since the Asakura house seems to be rather quiet that night. It cannot be because she was hungry for she had eaten enough.
She then sat up and looked around. She then smiled sweetly.
"Even the souls are asleep in this beautiful night." She whispered to herself as she stood up from her futon.
The prophetess decided to walk around. It may help her sleep. She couldn't believe that she is somehow an insomniac. If it was so then it should be treated at once. Depriving herself of sleep is not a good thing to do.
As she walked towards the long hallway she noticed a small calendar pinned on the wall. She stopped and let her eyes scanned the calendar. Nothing was special except for a big red circle around a certain day drawn by a certain male Ainu.
Tamao smiled. It was not a coincidence that the encircled date happens to be tomorrow.
"Nov. 26" she uttered knowing that it was a birthday of that certain Ainu.
A certain Ainu whose name her lips frequently mention and her heart never forgets.
"Horo-horo." She uttered with great gentleness.
Her heart suddenly froze and skipped a beat the moment that blue-haired Ainu flashed in her mind. He flashed complete with his smile pasted on his face and his eyes shining each and every time he greeted her.
"Why was he ever been born in this world anyway? Nobody really needs a guy like him." She said in lightheartedly remembering those times when Horo-Horo and Chocolove taunted and teased her.
They always made fun of her especially whenever she blushes right in front of Yoh. It was the kind of behavior that made her dislike him a bit more.
"But on second thought," she stopped as she continued to wander around, "He does have a little sister and I know that she loves him dearly. So maybe we really do need a guy like him walking around the earth."
Her thoughts then shifted again from that course when she realized something.
First was the fact that tomorrow is his birthday. And second is that she still doesn't have a gift for the Ainu.
"Why are we here you say?" Horo Horo asked his power spirit Kororo. They were supposed to be in a shack and sleeping with Pirika.
Pirika knew that sleeping in the shack would be perfect so that his oniichan's friends could prepare for his surprise birthday party without any interference.
"Well I know that I should be back with Pirika in the shack but... oh well I guess I just want to have a peek with the birthday cake Tamao will make for me." He said while making his voice barely audible.
Kororo cooed as if telling his master to wait even until midnight.
"It's my birthday tomorrow anyways so please just let me be."
Kororo then crossed its tiny arms and just disappeared as Horo-horo sighed.
He hid his snowboard among the bushes and quietly crept inside the house hoping that all its residents are sleeping.
9: 32 PM
That was the time when Tamao looked at the wall clock again. For the past 32 minutes she was walking around the kitchen thinking about the gift she'll give to that blue-haired boy. The boy that made her smile and cry at the same time. She wanted to give him something special that would remind him of her even if he is already married.
She then stopped walking, shocked at what she was just thinking for a moment. Married? Why would she think of that out of the blue?
She suddenly blushed from head to toe as she stared blankly at the floor.
She knew that she somehow liked the boy during those times when they were together in the Patch Village. Even though she always told her mind that she loved Yoh and only Yoh. The Ainu's childish smile and dazzling eyes can make her abandon all those foolish belief.
She suddenly shook her head to wake up. It was not the kind of dreaming she wanted to have in the first place. And if Miss Anna or Mistress Kino saw her sleeping in the kitchen what would they say to her.
"I wanted to bake him a cake but I know that Pirika already had that planned. And where could I get flour at this time?"
9: 58 PM
Almost 26 minutes passed just by thinking of that Ainu warrior. She sighed. What can be her gift this time?
"I can always cook something to him." She said to herself.
It seemed like a good idea but then again…
"But that's so... typical. I always cook for him whenever he's here." she argued to herself.
"How about I sew him a new shirt…" She said smiling happily. But then she looked at the wall clock
"I have no more time."
She then looked around the kitchen hoping to have an idea. And she was almost about to give up when she noticed a piece of stationary and a pen in the table.
How did those get there? No one knows.
She then sat and decided if HoroHoro wouldn't mind if her gift this time is a simple letter.
"Simple maybe. But I'll make sure that this letter will come from the heart."
But what's this? Look who's leaning on the wall outside and near the kitchen door?
It's the birthday boy himself.
"Why is she still awake? Now I can never see what's inside the refrigerator."
He thought while feeling the call of his stomach.
"But this is still nice. At least I can just stare at Tamao without anyone to bug me whatsoever and what about that letter? I'm intrigued." He thought as his mind started to brew something diabolical.
--Part 2: My letter--
Tamao took a little while to make up her message. She always pauses for a few moments to hold back her tears or to blush while in the middle of writing.
Horohoro, on the other hand, was delightfully watching the young lady. His heart beat rapidly every time she saw how Tamao's soft silky cheeks turned like the color of her hair. It was like looking at the clouds as the sakura trees blossoms and the wind carries their pink petals in the air. It was just plain beautiful... breathtaking was the word.
Moments later she finally finished her letter and with that Tamao took a small nap, which eventually led her to go to dreamland.
Horohoro stood up and went in as the beautiful prophetess was sleeping in front of him. Her gentle face never failed to melt his heart, a heart that he once assumed to be as cold as the ice of his hometown. He always liked her, and he have to admit that even if only to himself. He could never really deny that he loved her presence in his battles back in the Patch Village along with Pirika and the other girls. Pirika might be his number one priority but he knows that time will come that she will leave him to be with another man.
"At least if Tamao will stay to be single forever then I will not have any problems." He said as he took a chair and sat beside her.
"Or maybe I can have her forever if I marry her." He uttered, as he seemed to be mesmerized by Tamao's sleeping radiance. Now he doesn't know whether Tamao is more beautiful when she's smiling, laughing, angry, or scared (at Miss Anna), or blushing or now –when she's sleeping.
He then sighed. Something was getting heavy inside his chest.
"But she'll never like me too. She is still nuts about Yoh!" he thought as his eyes turns to the piece of paper she was writing on a while ago.
"Oh yeah the letter." He reminded himself.
10: 54 PM
It was almost an hour before his much-awaited birthday when his age will be increased by a year. Meaning he'll be one year older than Pirika again and meaning he'll have more chance of maturing to come up to Tamao's standards... meaning he'll be more man enough to proclaim his love for the girl.
"What am I thinking about now? Let's just read this letter already."
Of course that's not the only thing I really wanted to say to you now. I think fate itself has given me this chance of writing to you. You may not reply but I don't care since I just want to give you this gift. Gomen nasai for giving such a simple gift like this but this is all I can give for you.
I have no more time left and I know that your sister and your friends can already supply you with anything you can ever want.
What else can I say? I'm really frightened about your reaction to this letter but like I said this time I shall never get this chance pass by me and I'll tell you what I feel... from my heart
("From her heart what does she mean by that? Does she love me?" the Ainu thought as sweat drops accumulated in his forehead. He couldn't believe he's sweating like a pig in such chilly night like this.)
First of all I want to tell you how much I admire your nobility as an honorable Ainu warrior and a big brother for Pirika. I envy her, at least she has someone that loves and protects her... I wish I had a protector too. I don't know if you'll like what I'm telling you now but I really, really, really... like you. As a friend, as a brother and as someone that makes my heart stop beating every time he's one inch away from me.
I don't really know what more can I say... but I'm going to write it this time! I love you.
I don't know when it started and I hope it shall never end. I love you and I love the feeling of loving you. Even if you do not know this and even if you repay my love with your friendship I do not care as long as I can love you freely… like this… like the way it has always been.
Please forget about replying anymore... I don't want to know about what you're going to say. Please I don't want to be hurt again. Master Yoh already rejected me... and if you ever say 'no' to me I don't know if I can live again.
Again happy birthday... and remember I'm still beside you even if you don't notice me.
Horo horo then smiled at the girl beside him as he folded the letter and set it aside. He then decided that she must have been getting rather uncomfortable with her position so he grabbed the girl by the waist and carried her gently towards her room.
Since he was always around the Asakura residence very often after the Shaman Battle he knows exactly where everything and everyone's place is. It was not such a Herculean task for him to find Tamao's room and the empty futon. He laid the girl carefully and tucked her in. Tamao's letter was already on his pocket and he was about to leave when an idea suddenly struck him.
--Part 3: My reply--
Tamao suddenly woke up from a dream. In her dream she saw Horo horo writing a letter in reply for the letter she wrote to him. But before her mind drifted more to her letter she noticed that she was in her futon already.
"Maybe I absent-mindedly walked towards my room." She said to herself as a folded letter was peeking in the corner of her eye.
She was going to go back to sleep when she noticed her name written on the folded paper. She didn't really remember herself writing that there.
"Horo's birthday is getting closer." Tamao said to herself as she unfolded the paper.
Her eyes almost widened when she read that single line. Her heart suddenly became very eager to read it as if telling her to read it already.
I never thought you'd feel that way about me. But don't worry about it anymore... since I feel the same way about you. I was flattered very much when you told me that you admire my Ainu honor but you know what my honor and bravery always disappears and became not so admirable anymore whenever you are in front of me. I'm such a fool that I can't even tell you how much I love you with all my heart. But now since I will not see how your immediate reaction will be I'm becoming a little bit courageous about this confession.
First of all Tamao, I would like to share something with you. Don't you know that I'm getting more and more worried as each year passes by me? Why? It is because as the years add up I'm constantly being reminded that Pirika is being older and lovelier. I'm starting to fear that time will come and she'll going to leave me all alone. I wish that you'd never leave me... I wish that you will be here beside me always and I'll never let you go as long as I live. Don't you know that I often get angry all of a sudden every time I think about you being in a wedding gown and kissing another man in front of the altar. If that time ever comes I'm sure I'll kill that man! Gomen nasai for ruining your wedding so if ever don't bother to invite me.
Why do I have the courage to slay a man who dared to steal you away from me? Why do I tease you every time I notice you blushing in front of the dimwitted Yoh? Why do I always come back inside the kitchen and patiently await your cheerful greeting? Why do I even bother replying to such a letter?
The answer is that…
I love you Tamamura Tamao.
…simple yet so hard to say.
I love it when you blush, when you smile, when you cook, when you get scared and every movement your body makes. I love it when you're there muttering something about Yoh and Anna or every time I stare at you without you knowing it. I love it when I get to be with you under one roof and I love it every time fate gives me a chance to protect you the way I protect my sister.
This is my reply... I hope it wasn't the reply you are expecting because I really do love you –with all my heart and soul. You don't need to write me back anymore because...
"Because of what?" Tamao asked, as a she didn't notice her right hand was on her waist and she was already standing up.
"…because... action speaks louder than words." Horo said appearing from her room's door.
"That's a cliché... how do I know that it comes from your heart?" Tamao said as her eyes averted his gaze.
Horo-horo walked slowly to her as Tamao just froze there. The inches just melted away as Tamao realized their proximity. She suddenly felt a finger lifting her chin to meet his eyes. Horo gazed directly at prophetess' lovely eyes.
"So you mean... you're going to prove if what you said was true by... kissing me?" Tamao whispered as electricity run up and down her spine every time she felt the breath of the Ainu.
Horohoro's eyes suddenly rolled towards the direction of the wall clock behind Tamao.
--Part 4: After Midnight--
When Tamao noticed the clock's reflection on the Ainu's eyes, she smiled at him.
"Where's my gift?" he asked with a mocking look on his face.
Tamao however was used to this kind of HoroHoro. He seem to be a brat whenever he is with her but in spite of all that cockiness she still liked this childish Ainu... even more than her Master Yoh himself.
"Your gift?" Tamao said in a playful grin. It was such a Herculean task to keep her face from blushing furiously.
"Yeah! You should be proud you know you're the first one that greeted me a happy b-!" Horohoro was saying when Tamao's sweet cherry lips abruptly silenced him.
It was a kiss! It was their first kiss.
As quick as she kissed him she immediately pulled away. The birthday boy on the other hand was shocked.
He never thought for a while that the lovely, shy, prim and proper Tamao Tamamura would place her lips against his like that. He was gaping, eyes-wide as he laid his eyes upon the crimson-faced girl. Although she was blushing and was avoiding eye contact she still looked beautiful to his eyes.
"Sorry. I shouldn't have done that... I know its wrong... I-I was just carried away." Tamao tried to say while avoiding his piercing stare.
"Horo-kun." Tamao uttered, looking bewildered about the reason why he shouted.
"Don't say sorry. It just means that you regret what you just did."
"What do you want me to say then?"
"I'm not finish yet or I'm sorry because I didn't use my tongue." He said grinning with malice.
Tamao hand suddenly flew banging the boy's head. The impact was so strong that it seems to be a miracle if he survived. All of those years being around Anna seem to have its effect.
"Hey what did you do that for? It's my birthday." Horo said rubbing his aching head.
"Oh... Gomen... It was just because... you're such a pervert!" Tamao said while the tone of compassion was still reigning in her voice.
She hurriedly knelt down beside him and checked his condition.
"Are you hurt?" She asked pitying the injury he had.
Well actually it wasn't much after a while Tamao's hand was very light and delicate so he was not really hurt. Hao's spirit of fire is still much more powerful than Tamao.
"Yeah... here." He said pointing at his head which stopped aching now.
Tamao leaned forward to him a kissed his head. Her face brushed gently on his icy blue hair, as its sweet aroma that seemed to come from the mountains of Hokkaido tickled her nose.
"Is that all?" Tamao asked when she sat beside him again.
"Here..." Horo answered pointing to his lips.
Tamao just smiled but this time she seemed to be delighted to kiss it too.
So that folks are the events one night before Horo's birthday. We'll never really know for sure what would happen between those two and if Horohoro will get his kiss... but all we know is that Tamao will still be Tamao, the same shy prophetess that now found a new love of her life. And Horo horo will still be Horo horo but this time he's one year older and hopefully more mature... so what do you think?
I know that its sooo Bitin! I'm sorry I really have to eat... it's 7:32 already and I still haven't done my assignment! Don't worry I'll make it up to you the next time... I'll try to write about Ren and Piri next...