It's high time Ritsu got some more fics around here, he really is a good character. -Ritchan-san (Ha! I changed my name for him!)

Reason To Live

Once again I find myself here; here, on the edge of the forest by Sensei's house. It's odd that me, of all people, should find myself hiding behind a cherry tree on an early spring morning. I slowly but surely loose my nerves as I wait, but, just before I've given up hope of your arrival, there you are. A smile sweeping across your face, you walk with a confidence I can only dream of achieving some day. While your appointment is not with me, but the day's laundry, I still feel a smile slowly work its way across my own pitiful face. As you hang up linen sheets, you hum a little song to yourself, unaware of your captive audience of one. Wouldn't you be surprised if you knew I was here?

Actually, I'm pretty surprised I'm here myself. Usually I'm not the kind of person to do something this daring. In fact, as I stand hidden, my heart is racing, my hands twisting the strings on my bag nervously. Yes, it took a lot of nerve for me to force my feet in the direction of Sensei's house this morning. I had hoped I could have walked here with more determination, but my steps became a slow but pitiful stumble. I really am too shy. I was so uncomfortable, that, I'm sad to say, I had to put on a kimono before I came. I wouldn't have been able to drag myself out of my house in anything else.

It's been awhile since we last talked face to face. I laugh aloud, startling the nearby birds, when I think of our first encounter. You met me outside this very same house. Being the klutz I am, I had spilled a bag of books I was carrying to give to Shigure-san. However, much to my surprise, and delight, you offered to help me. Even my violent confessions of my sin didn't scare you away. You truly wanted to be my friend.

Ha, and then there was your confusion about my gender. I truly am sorry that I didn't tell you I was a guy to begin with. I guess I just look so female that you just assumed that's what I was. I suppose the kimono didn't help either.

I haven't changed much since then. My hair is still long, my choice of clothing is the same, and my confessions as constant and violent as ever. I bet that if you looked to your left, into the forest, right now, you'd think you were seeing a young girl peeking around a tree trunk, instead of an 18-year-old guy. But there is one thing that has changed; my outlook on life. While I continue to have problems stepping out of my comfort zone, I find, that when I do, I don't regret it. I'm able to meet new people, to try new things, to smile more, because of you. As odd as it sounds to say this, I really do like you. If I ever got up the courage to, I'd tell you…if…if it wasn't for them.

"You really shouldn't bother Honda-san, she tends to get overworked when you're here".

"You keep apologizing, saying everything is your fault. Well, IT IS! Why don't you just leave us alone…leave Tohru alone!"

I know they're just looking out for you…so I guess that's why I heed their advice. I try to stay out of your way as much as possible, and, when I do speak with you, I make sure I'm not bothering you. …They really do care about you, you know…but then…so do I.

Even now, as they are coming out of the house, joining you in the garden, I can tell they are only thinking of you. I had hoped that maybe I would have a chance to talk with you today, but as I watched Yuki-kun and Kyo-kun emerge from Sensei's house, I can feel my self-consciousness welling up in my heart. I could never try and talk to you with them around. I guess for today I will have to be satisfied with watching you from afar.

As a breeze ruffles my long, purple sleeves, I lift my gaze to the sky. The morning is getting late, and I know I must leave soon if I am to get home before my absence is noticed. Before I leave, however, there is something I must do. Opening my drawstring bag, I place a small, crystal figure of a monkey on a cherry blossom on the ground next to the tree. My hope is that, when you are tending to the plants nearby, or maybe when you are walking to school in the coming days that you will spot the present I am leaving you. I hope this figurine will see good times with you, because, even as I whisper good-bye to you again, my dearest wish for you is that you find happiness.

You once told me "…I want to find my reason for living…in someone else. The people in my life give me something to live for. And someday, I hope I'll find that special someone to whom I can say…'You're my reason for living'". I hope that someday you do find that special someone. Even if it's not me…even if it's one of those two, I pray that you find your reason for living. Because, you, Tohru Honda, are my reason to live, my reason to hang on.