Cougar x Mimori CHALLENGE fic

Disclaimer: I do not own Scryed.

AN: This is a completely AU one shot. So some of the characters will be children, some will not. It's basically about a conversation between Cougar and Mimori that is mainly just slightly. The dialogue was so much fun to do. There is no alter powers or anything else like that. I have the setting placed in the present time so there is no future machines or the Lost ground incase you want to tell me off. I know a lot of people itch to do that so much to me. Lol, hopefully not.


Searching throughout the entire apartment of white and green, Mimori Kiryuu could not believe that she would forget such an important book! The book had earlier been lying down on the kitchen counter next to the cereal box of an inane brand that her daughter insisted on having even after having tens of thousands of arguments over whether or not she could have it.

But as soon as Mimori had turned her back to fix her lunch, almost ready to go out the door with a backpack containing scrubs, a surgeon hat, her lunch, drinks, and a few cds, she had remembered the book. So she had looked to the last place she saw it, on the kitchen counter where it no longer had resided!

That book helped her nerves so much especially when her coworkers often commented on her love life or lack thereof. Ever since she had her beautiful five year old daughter, Mimori had sworn off men for her child's future though she knew that her child did wish for a father figure of some type in her maternal world.

That book happened to have been a favorite of Mimori's called 'The Darkest Call.' It also had been a Christmas gift from her child's sire, as a gag gift that turned out to have had a profound effect on her when he had left.

"Mommy….." Looking over the kitchen as it was now in disarray; Mimori could feel the start of a headache. She didn't need this! It was nearly six in the morning and she was going to be late getting her daughter to the babysitter's house down the way while still trying to get on time for work. She would have to run after she left her child to the forces of others.

"We'll be leaving when I find my book!" Mimori answered absentmindedly, starting to hurriedly put the kitchenware away into the proper places that it belonged to. Her eyes now focusing towards her fridge. Maybe she had absentmindedly put the book in there instead of the milk, but to her digress it wasn't in there.

"But…..Mommy!" She pleaded, cajoling her mother to take notice of her as the woman passed her to enter her room one of the last places that she remembered having the book.

Pacing around their small two bedrooms, one bathroom apartment, she started searching amongst the piles of clothing on her bed, to only find nothing to her dismay. She walked past her youngster, noticing that the girl's normally happy smile was wiped off her face with a look of impatience as Mimori continued going from room to room, searching for something that wasn't there.

"Not now, Kanami!" Her mother's sharp voice conveyed an annoyance at not finding her object of desire, discreetly tuning out her child's protests quickly. It was when she went to go through her daughter's closet that the impatient being finally spoke her mind, wanting to leave.

"Mommy! The book is right here!" Raising her arms out, the green-eyed girl showed her mother the paperback cover of the book, a man, one of those heavily muscled men of course, holding onto a hand that was connected to a rather busty brunette in a dress not for modest women of her time.

Mimori dreamed often of her men like that but she had no one for years since she had had Kanami and in all reality if anyone was like her dear Sword Spirit, Awklins Featherbound, she would think she was really dreaming much like she always did during the time that she had realized what a mess her life had come to be sometimes.

"Oh, dear! I'm sorry for keeping you waiting, Kanami. Let's go." Abashed, Mimori apologized to the green-eyed innocent, taking the book from the child's small fingers to be held by her own long and diligent ones. The girl took up a hand as the other was taken by the naughty book that her mother loved. It was no Peyton Place but it endured her mother's tastes.

They walked quite a distance from leaving their apartment, locking the door and walking down the stairs to another apartment complex right next door to a school a few blocks away. As they walked, Kanami began to feel the first day jitters of her schooling career beginning.

"Is school a bad place, mommy?" She remembered her mother telling her something about how much she loved school though she wished sometimes she hadn't continued. She didn't want to deal with the agony she had when Kanami's father had left her to deal with her problem.

"It can be, but it can also be a good place. Are you scared?" Looking down towards the small figure she held, Mimori wondered how she was going to be able to let go of her child this morning to the babysitter. Even more was the thought of seeing Kanami graduate! 'Oh, dear!' that had scared her tremendously as she began feeling the tightening fingers of her daughter's fair hands.

"A little……" She seemed so unlike herself that Mimori dearly wanted to ask who was there holding her hand if not her daughter. Kanami never acted as if she was frightened. Sure, there was the boogeyman phase which was only increased in fear at the time because of her ex-roommate's particularly homeless friend would somehow sleep walk into Kanami's and her room at night.

That hadn't been spectacular to wake up to. Even worse was the ghost phase. God above, she never knew how she lasted so long when Kanami would begin telling her morbid and scary tales that she picked up from the net when she was allowed on, or movies. Mimori deeply hoped that Kanami didn't turn out to be a little dark as a teenager.

Lastly, Kanami had troublesome dreams since she was a baby where she saw herself killed often in many different ways. It was strange at first, but when she had begun to talk to Mimori in coherent sentences, Mimori immediately got a doctor for her. The doctor had diagnosed the brunette child with a case of attention deficit disorder and told the girl's mother that it was from an overactive imagination.

Mimori diagnosed the doctor later with a broken nose for saying some mean things about her daughter to her which she didn't accept quietly.

"I bet you'll make a lot of friends. You're always making friends in the apartment complex." This was true to the course of the fact that Kanami was so friendly with everyone. It was always the young pediatrician's fear that her daughter would wind up just walking away with some bad man of some sort of reputation for ransom or even worse.

She dreaded to think the even worse.

After all, it was every mother's fear wasn't it? Well, most.

"I know….but…." The bright-eyed child closed her mouth in thought as she watched the way the twilight purple colors of the sun came into the light and put everything in a bluish and violet tint, a sense of melancholy as she wondered upon this thing called school. Today would be her first day.

It was awful because she had just moved here with her mother and barely got a baby sitter for the mornings let alone the afternoons. She had no idea whether or not her mother would be able to get off later in the day. Kanami could remember having to stay home while her mother went to work at night. It had made her very sad to just sit around late at night, reading her own storybooks because Mimori had to make sure they had a roof over their heads. Even their roommate often left during the night, leaving Kanami to settle herself when she had the frights.

"Don't be scared. It won't be that bad." She hoped it would not be as bad as it had been the last few years. She didn't miss their roommates, especially the homeless man, whatever that man's name was. She liked talking to him but he frightened her often times than not especially when her actual roommate would come. The woman was rather like an older resentful sister than a friend, but Kanami and her did talk only once in awhile.

"Are you sure?" Yeah, she hoped it wasn't so bad as being alone in an apartment with bad dreams though for Mimori and Kanami that had been all they could afford. The girl looked downwards towards her moving sneakers. They were new like her pretty pink shirt and blue jean shorts and pink ribbon though she did wear a really old orange jacket and a new backpack.

"Yes. Now I've got to go, Kanami. I love you. Have a good day at school and make a lot of new friends, okay?" They had reached their destination, a green house on the corner with flowers all over the place. They were standing on the porch where a sit swing rested still, no motion overcoming this morning display of ordinary life. Knocking on the door, Mimori waited till it opened to reveal a rather older woman, looking as if she had been cooking, an apron around her waist revealing so. A few words were exchanged and Kanami was given a hug from her mother along with a kiss.

"Okay, mommy." After exchanging an 'I love you' to each other, and Kanami walking into the door to the elder person, she turned around to see her mother jogging to the hospital they saw down the road. It's white walls glimmered in the dewing morning life. Kanami wanted to scream for her mother to come back but she knew she couldn't. She had to be the strong one today like her mother was when Kanami was born.


The autumn leaves spun around in their array of colors mixing into the light of the somewhat crisp afternoon. A small bench lay in the open flanked by two trees showing the world the dance of their golden leaves. A doctor sat there in jeans and a shirt, her eyes searching the flattened surface of the vast field with play things for children. None of the children looked small and young enough to be her child, nor even in the kid's grade. Sighing, Mimori returned her gaze to her book, opening it to re-read the chapters she already poured countless hours to be brought out of her reading by a strong masculine voice.

"I see that you must be waiting for a little one. I'm Cougar Straight." He was tall! God above, Mimori could swear the man was near seven feet especially with his spiky hair. He reminded her of a few old cartoons were the spiky guy was always the fast superheroes. She always seemed to like the spiky guys for they were always able to contain some interest for her.

She had realized she had been staring up at him when a particular gust of wind brought her to see those waiting green eyes. Forgetting her manners was something she never did and so she simply let the words escape automatically.

"Mimori Kiryuu." He reached down and grabbed her hand in a mock shake. His eyes were green, she noted. It wasn't an unusual shade of green but it was her favorite color of green. It was a bright green and his smile wasn't half-bad either. She shrugged the thought away into oblivion as soon as it came unbidden to her mind.

"You must be Kanami's sister then?" How did he know Kanami? Now, he had her full attention. He seemed a bit too cheerful, she immediately thought. Trying to sustain her suspiscion to nothing more than just a small part of her mind, Mimori decided he could be told the truth. He didn't seem like the type to judge.

"No, her mother." He raised an eyebrow towards the woman not saying anything about her being a sanctimonious whore or anything of the like. She had remembered the many times at her Christian college when she would be sneered at or even worse put at the butt end of jokes because she had been pregnant with Kanami. She still wouldn't give up her daughter for the world.

"Really? I would have never thought." He seemed to keep that smile upon his narrow cheeks. It was bright and sunny and it eased her into a gentle glance as he sat down, indicating that he was. In one of his hands he held a book called, "The Alabaster Staff." She had to wonder if it was a good book or not.

"Most don't." Her reply was simple and effective for a small silence as she wondered if she should be embarrassed by her book or by the way she was treating him. Women did not tend to meet men around schools where their children might be. What if he was some kind of stalker! Mother instincts overpowering sense of reason, she allowed her gaze to turn colder towards him.

"I'm her teacher." He finally took notice towards her cold stare feeling as if he was the scrutiny of every woman's worse nightmare packed in one. Well, he thought he was quite charming, though he knew that he could understand the woman's cold glare in his direction. He certainly would act the same way if he was waiting for his child and some stranger just came up and talked to him.

"Shouldn't you be in there teaching them?" She blinked wonder as she became worried. Why was the teacher not in with his students taking care of them as it was stated that he should as a teacher. Her voice was higher pitched than she wished it was, showing her extreme concern towards her child's safety.

"Nah. The Art teacher is teaching them right now. The flocks of new born birds do rise up to be taken care of by others occasionally. Are you taking it well?" He didn't look concerned. In fact, he was rather lax about the whole situation. Powerful arms, almost lean-muscled arms, were tucked behind his mane of spiky hair.

So she had art on Mondays? Mimori put that away into a little time table stuck in the back of her head. Remembering that she was supposed to answer, she immediately did so.

"Not really. I missed her all day." She had missed hearing the sing song voice of her daughter as she walked to work. Hell, she missed being with Kanami during the day. Mimori had only recently gotten the morning shift so she could be at work during the time Kanami went to school, when she used to take the afternoon shift. She really had missed a dozen of things her and her child would do in the afternoons and mornings before Mimori went to work.

"I was the same when my son went to kindergarten. His name is Kazuma Straight, but I've always called him Kazuya. He gets on me badly about that." He smiled sheepishly, rubbing his neck in a sense of sheepishness. It was then that Mimori noted his hair color was that of a carrot, bright orange, kind of like fire, danger, and love.

"You have a son?" She secretly wanted their conversation to continue on, her mind on just the once polite conversation she was having with a man in the longest time. The last one she really had at length was with Kanami's father, who had told her that she was on her own. He seemed to be sincere in his affection as he watched her with such a genuine niceness.

"Yeah, he's in third grade and a bit of a troublemaker but he'll get out of it. It's just a stage unless he's like his mother. God above, help that woman." He placed his palm up to cup his cheek as he let out a mock sigh. His eyes seemed to fall away into the depths of his cranium, looking over times long before she had ever known him.

"What was his mother like?" Who was this woman that caused this free-spirited man such pain? She had become instantly curious as she wondered what type of woman this man had wanted. Secretly, she wanted to harm her mind for the wanting of such thoughts. She shouldn't want to know such a stranger. There was no instant attraction, at least not to her attention though she would not admit that he was a gentleman amongst men. He seemed to treat her with a general respect she never really experienced as a young woman.

"She was a chained spirit until I divorced her. Her parents forced her to be everything she never wanted and they were oppressive. When we got married, she eventually just became sad and so depressed that all she did was stare at the window. It was worse when she had Kazuya. She wouldn't even hear his crying because she was so deep in her depression. I gave her the divorce papers after a particular bad incident with her ignoring him and right after she signed them, she left." His eyes darkened with the pain as if it was a really unbearable thought that he often crossed in his mind. In fact, Cougar could remember Asawa's back as she walked away to the cab by the apartment. He had really tried to take care of her and Kazuma but with Asawa out of work and his low paying job of a teacher, he really couldn't take the best care for them.

To him, it was no wonder as why she left. Their situation was hopeless because she wouldn't pick a finger up to help. Asawa hadn't had the chance to live. She was caged by her parents, then by him and Kazuma. Cougar knew he did his best to try and let her live, but letting her leave had been the best thing for the both of them, even if she was his first love.

"That is really sad…." Mimori wondered upon having love. She had a mother's love for her daughter, and a father's love from her own father but she didn't know what it was like to be in love. Love was too illogical. She had succumbed to lust with Kanami's father but she hadn't loved him. Perhaps that was why she didn't understand and her admition was really shallow.

"Not really. She was happy to be able to be free. She was too much of a free spirit stuck in a world that she couldn't live rightfully in. She deserved to be able to let go though what she did to Kazuya when he was smaller was…..well, he didn't deserve it." Cougar smiled, able to tell that she wasn't able to discern what he was telling her. His eyes furrowed as he remembered his last conversation with his ex. She was screaming at him while he stood there stoic and unable to show anything. Her words of fury speaking of Kazuma and their marriage being a mistake was something he didn't like remembering.

"What did she do?" Mimori had never raised a hand to Kanami even when Kanami had her terrible twos which for Mimori had not been as awful as she expected. In all truth, Kanami had never been an overtly nervous or an angry child but rather a mild-mannered and proper girl of her heritage, whether or not that heritage accepted her was a different story. As Mimori watched the strange man, she knew she wanted to share his pain and feel his sorrow so that that burden did not become to heavy for his mind.

"She left when he was four and you know kids are kind of scared without a guide in their life, so he begged her to stay. He was happy having a mother but since she, in a matter of small words, down right accused him of keeping her chained, Kazuya was never able to conform to rules again." He sighed, rubbing the back of his head as a sign of displeasure, a small line on his lips to be called a frown. If this boy never followed the rules then…….? What if Kanami became the boy's friend!

"He always gets in trouble then?" Mimori's voice showed her apprehension though she never had been an emotional woman at all. She could remember when she had told the man that she was indeed pregnant with his child. He had looked at her and then wrote her a check for six thousand dollars for Kanami. Mimori had only cashed it into Kanami's college account she had started years ago. As a person cashing that check into an account for Kanami had taken almost more resolve than she had as she remembered her heels clicking against the black tile floor to the woman on staff.

She had never felt so ashamed.

"Yeah, Asawa's words, I guess, made him realize that he could go his own way. He gets into it all the time with one of the fourth graders, Ryuho. Those two nearly killed each other the last time. All I can do is love him really, enough for the both of us or until I fall in love again. " He smiled at her by the end of this statement. Cougar didn't know why he was telling her of these things but she seemed to be understanding in a way and really nice for she hadn't walked off from him yet. Besides, her eyes showed such a contemplative sadness that he really couldn't help himself talking to her. She really was a sad little creature, wasn't she?

"Ryuho?" He was surprised that she seemed to know that rich kid from his son's fights. Her eyes mirrored the swirling memories that he had as he could see the green haired child dancing around within her eyes from the past. He wondered if she had knopwn the kid as close as he had when Kazuma and Ryuho had started kindergarten.

"You know him?" She nodded. Her mind replaying the moment that she had ever heard of a Ryuho. She knew it hadn't been too long ago but she seemed as if it was long ago. Sighing, Mimori scratched her cheek in thoughtfulness, a habit she had picked up from Kanami when Kanami watched her favorite day-time pre-school shows.

"The name sounds familiar……" She trailed off in thought as she tried to remember who exactly held that name in her memory. It certainly wasn't that easily forgotten, was it? She grumbled alittle at her forgetfulness. She knew the name because of the fact that she knew she had remarked how oddly Japanese it sounded.

"The kid's a little bit of a teacher's pet and is younger than Kazuya. It kind of gets on my son's nerves since they were friends before Ryuho skipped a few grades. That kid lords it over Kazuya." Cougar began supplying her with a bit of information on the kid, hoping that she would remember. He noticed that as she scratched her cheek, looking troubled, that she was indeed more of a child at that moment than any other that he had seen her enact. He also took notice of the book in her hand. He wondered if that was the kind of man she was into. If it was, he'd probably laugh behind closed doors.

"I remember him! I knew his mother……" Snapping her head up from her thoughts, she finally realized where she knew the prodigy child from. Ryuho had been with his father while they waited for his mother and his father had stopped to talk with Mimori who had been at his college with him a year or so before then.

"How so? I thought all he had was his sister, Scheris Adjani. She's the librarian here at Hold Elementary." Scheris was almost the complete opposite of her younger brother. While Ryuho reminded him more or less like a wall with a stop sign, she was like autumn, the colorful leaves that made you think were one color but could always be a different one the next minute. She was like her books, as colorful as the stories she took of.

"She was in labor with her fourth child I believe when she and the child both died. He was so small then and so sad when he watched the doctors come out to tell him and his family. I was sad about it." Mimori's memory of seeing Ryuho had been brief. That boy was a faucet of tears as he looked at his mother's dead hand that had fallen off the bed in her delivery room. Mimori remembered that the birthing wasn't supposed to be that hard on her since she had already had at least three children, but this one had taken the poor woman.

"You were the doctor?" He was curious. So she was a doctor? He almost wanted to pinch himself for the amount of belief that was taking. This Mimori Kiryuu was either very smart or she was lying or she didn't look her age. He hoped it was the first one otherwise it would be slightly strange to be infatuated, if that was he would call the strange feeling he was getting from just being around her, with an older woman. Every woman he had ever had feelings for were younger than him so it seemed a little strange.

"Oh, no. I was in another room helping to deliver someone else." She smiled, blushing slightly as she tried her best not to be mistaken with the great doctor she had been an intern for. Her mind reeled from the very idea that someone would think that she'd be delivering children for the rich. Usually the all the rich soon-to-be mothers all shared one doctor and that was Dr. Mujo.

"So……you're really young for a doctor." His tone drawled, hooking the proud woman with a little vanity. Not a lot of people thought she was a doctor or could have a doctorate at age twenty-eight. She was very proud that at such a young age she was doing her dream before the many others that had the ability to do so. She remembered skipping four grades in high school and graduating her school when she was sixteen. She had taken a year or two off for volunteer work in Africa and then came back to her homeland to continue her education to become a doctor.

"I got through college when I was twenty and med school when I turned twenty-four." Her smile expanded as she mentioned the information quite gladly to the now awed audience she had with this strange man. She didn't understand why she still allowed the conversation to go on. She should have just returned to the reading in her book but his sorrow and his joy spoke volumes of life into that she hadn't really felt before. She felt comfortable around him now.

"I bet you got married to your childhood sweetheart." He smiled, jokingly, noticing immediately when her visage became slightly crestfallen into sadness. Cougar Straight wanted so much to ram his head repeatedly into a bench for saying those words for that look on her face. He didn't want to see that look on her face again.

"I was never married. Kanami's father wasn't able to stay. He went to where his duty was first, with his fiancé." It had been a month or so after Christmas that Mimori had found out she was pregnant and she finally decided to tell the father. He had stared at her, green eyes showing such poignant truth to her. He wouldn't leave his wife for her. He wouldn't help her in anyway whatsoever, even if he was one of her medical professors. It had been nothing but lust between them.

"Let me guess, a Christmas party?" Cougar's strong voice broke her out of her reverie causing her to gape at him, open-wide eyes. How! How did he know about it! Mimori's mind flashbacked through all the words that she had shared in their recent and only conversation. She hadn't said anything about when Kanami was conceived. She blinked, wondering in her mind, afraid almost to ask.

"How did you know that?" But she was brave enough to ask. Courage surged through her mouth as she spoke the words and it seemed with her determining look in her eyes that she was demanding the answer from him. Boy, did Cougar have a little story to tell her from the class that day. Chuckling, Cougar raised his hands up innocently, as if he really was, that hot flash worthy smile of his in place.

"Kanami's birthday is nine months exactly away from Christmas. It isn't something she's ashamed of. She told all of the students that she was given to her mother for Christmas." Cougar laughed, a joyous sound above the winter of her mind yet her mind was still frozen as her brain interpreted the words he just said.

Only a few words came past her shock. Kanami. Christmas. Given to mother. Nine months.

'Oh, DEAR GOD!' Mimori could be said to have never made much of a breach in her etiquette but she dearly wondered what happened to that etiquette with Kanami sometimes. She dearly loved her child but she was so embarrassed! She barely noticed the annoying waving motion of a tanned hand with four fingers and a thumb in front of her.

"Oh, God above! I am so sorry she said such a thing!" Then she remembered who she was speaking with. Blushing a bright crimson red, Mimori never felt so flustered in her life! She was wanting to take the nearest object, which was either the bench, Cougar, or her beloved book, and bludgeon her head into it multiple times. Cougar Straight only smiled that smile that seemed to make her more flustered more so in her heart and body than alone in her cheeks.

"Don't worry. Kids say the darnedest things, you know. Kazuya for an entire year told me that being cultured was being chopped up for stew and ready to serve at Urizane's diner. In a way, society does the same. I think it is the strangest thing when it is the children that pick up on such things when we adults don't think about it. We've been conditioned not to." He was laughing, eyes twinkling merrily as he watched the dark-haired woman with interest. She looked so cute when she was flustered that Cougar kept it a note within his mind to do so whenever he met her.

"Really?" Noticing that the spotlight was off of her, creating a sigh of relief, Mimori Kiryuu became more interested in what he was saying. 'Cultured?' She thought to herself. Was being cultured a bad thing for children nowadays? She hoped not. She was trying to teach Kanami the better ways of the world, upper class and lower class. She wanted her daughter to be able to see what she wanted and be able to express herself well in all areas of the world, yet……..if Kanami didn't want it then wasn't Mimori being just like her parents?

"Yeah, that and he hated to read. He said it made his eyes hurt and the words just seemed to blur on the page. I swear, he was just wanting an easier way out so I told him he had to learn to play three instruments. That was enough motivation for him to learn the electric guitar, violin, and choir though he's a bit shy in the talent when it comes to choir. He drives me nuts when he tries to sing all the oldies tunes he hears on my radio station to piss me off." Taking a tanned hand, he diligently ran a hand through his crimson hair which his converser found very interesting. As she had thought before, his hair was the color of fire, excitement, and danger. It was also the color of passion in all things, the one thing Mimori didn't have.

"Oh, there she is!" Except when it came to her daughter or her book. Mimori had noticed a new set of children running out to the playground around them. Dusty books on the walk ways, waiting for their owners to return them to class. The autumn leaves swirled around her child as she played in the gold, red, and passion-colored leaves, running about without a care in the world. Two boys were also there, moving about with the vigor of their youth playing tag as it looked like with the smaller and much younger girl.

"Kazuya! You better not be teaching her any of your tricks!" Mimori blinked. One of those two boys were Kazuma Straight? She assumed it must have been the one with the almost fiery red tint to his dark hair. She could see that dark flame of wild tresses even from how far she was. Cougar had yelled with an intensity seen in a proud father as the one who she had guessed was Kazuma looked up sharply at his direction with ire.

"That's Kazuma?" Hands on her lap, holding her book comfortably, she turned towards the smiling Cheshire cat beside her. His grin was infectious and she felt a smile slip on her own pair of lips as well. The more the merrier, right?

"Yeah. The boy next to him is Kimishima. Obviously, Kanami made some fast friends with them. She probably set off of Ryuho and Kazuya did his chivalric best to save her." She noticed the darker haired child that played with the other two brunettes. He seemed to be the more mindful one out of Kazuma and Kanami. Their trio had already started their way over to the two until the stood in front of the bench.

"What do ya want, old man?" Kazuma was indeed passionate and rebellious as Cougar had said. His eyes matching perfectly with his voice. He seemed almost feral, not the type of kid that one would want their child associated with, yet Mimori knew that this one was probably not so bad. He seemed kind even if he really didn't look it.

"I see you made a fast friend with Kanami. This is her mother, Ms. Kiryuu. We were just talking, Kazuya." Kazuma turned to look towards Mimori, studying her. Kanami's mother? His old man must have been off his rocker! The pretty lady looked more like her older sister! After all, mother's didn't seem as nice as Kanami's mom did. It was after he was done studying her that he noticed his father's use of his nickname.

"KAZ-U-MA! IT'S KAZUMA!" He growled towards the lumbering form of his father, the tall kindergarten teacher smiling all he was worth as if he was innocent of the crime. Kazuma hated it when his father mispronounced his name. Getting ready to lunge, like his karate teacher taught him, he debated on whether or not to do this in front of Kanami.

He, however, didn't get the chance.

"You're still my little Kazuya to me, Kazuya!" Cougar leaned over his legs to his son, ruffling up his ruby brown hair, making the hair seem more wild than it already was from play. The child swatted at his father's bigger palm, trying to pry the hand from ruffling his feathers, so to speak, too much.

"Shut up! It's nice to meet you, Kanami's mom." He bowed in front of Mimori after retorting to his father with an angry yelp like that of a pup to its mother. Mimori returned a pleasantry to him as well, causing Kazuma to only blink in surprise. Many adults didn't treat him with respect but she did. She was now a perfectly okay person in his book.

"Mommy! Kazu-kun is my buddy for our buddy system until I get to third grade like him! Isn't that cool, mommy? I have a buddy!" Kanami seemed to dance around Kimishima and Kazuma, full of energy, dancing to a tune only she could hear. Mimori always wanted to be as free-spirited as Kanami always seemed.

"That's really awesome, Kanami!" She smiled at her child, returning a beam of sunshine from the girl as she laughed and moved around on her own as if there were ants in her pants or something of the like. That was when she noticed the man beside her mother. She wondered if she was ever going to have a father in her life. If so, she had decided way earlier that day that she liked Mr. Straight. He was fun and a teacher to boot!

"Hi, Mr. Straight! Are we going home yet? I don't want to go. It's recess." She really didn't want to go home yet. Her mother's face only showed a little surprise as Kazuma and Kimishima muttered something of the fact that they leave later in the day. Kazuma though was watching the interaction between the two adults and his new friend.

"You go home after recess, little Ms. Kanami. Did you like art? Was Mr. Tachibana nice to you?" Chuckling at her, Cougar returned her bright smile with one of his own, ruffling her head a little in friendliness that she didn't mind receiving from him. Remembering her art class, the little girl nodded enthusiastically! That was where she met Kazu-kun after all!

"Yup! He was so serious and everything until Kazu-kun came with his class. Mr. Tachibana started showing us how to finger paint letters and everything like that though I know how to write my name and it was so much fun!" The little one tried to imitate her serious art teacher to fail miserably at it to leave her audience of four people to laugh in their own ways. Kazuma, however, was fuming over his new nickname from the girl. Why couldn't people call him by his name!

"HEY! KANAMI! COME ON!" Kazuma decided it was enough of a waste talking to his father, but having to miss out on recess was too much for him. Kimishima had already begun to leave. Kazuma began pulling one of Kanami's smaller arms, her frame almost being easily pulled along with his strength.

"Why don't you go enjoy your recess, Kanami?" Seeing the indecision in her daughter's eyes, Mimori decided to make the choice for her free spirited child, watching the chains of duty fall way to the privilege of childhood. Mimori smiled despite her qualms against watching herself grow old like this.

"Okay! Bye, mommy!" Watching Kanami run along with such innocence, Mimori wanted to watch that forever. However, she knew one day that she would have to watch that child grow up and graduate into a world of horror that her child could have the ability to change unlike Mimori.

A silence hung in the air for a few minutes after the children left the adults. Cougar had been studying her profile, seeing the changes through her body language.

"So, what kind of doctor are you?" He decided to help her get out of her mind as she seemed to often fall away into the abyss of memories or thoughts. Maybe she thought too much for her own good. That must've been her biggest failing in her life.

"I'm a pediatrician, but I used to be in labor and delivery for a year or so. I just moved closer to the school so I can be with Kanami as much as possible." He blinked and grinned at what Lady Luck had planted almost right into his lap! A pediatrician! That was the greatest stroke of luck he'd had all year long. If he was extra lucky, she might consider his proposition.

"The school is looking for a doctor right now. Would you be interested?" All bets were placed on the table. She could fold her hand right now, bet the same amount, or ante.

"I suppose." She bet the same amount. Now to put up the stakes and see if she chooses a different answer.

"Good. If you want, over dinner, I can give you the application papers and an appointment with Principle Jigmarl and the Board of Health and Education." Was she going to take his invitation? He noted deep in his mind as she contrasted the idea sharply in her mind.

"Tonight?" Bad call! Get ready to get the life preserves out, Cougar! Your battleship is beginning to sink!

"Yeah. I bet little Ms. Kanami will want to hang out with Kazuya and Kimishima. Kimishima lives right next door and I tend to babysit the kid because his parents are always on business trips." Sweetening the deal before he was asking her blantantly to dinner caused Mimori to change her worried face to a visage that belied her enthusiasum for the idea.

"……..Sure, Mr. Straight." Mimori on the other hand was excited! She hadn't been asked out for years and she seemed to be the only one she knew that didn't have a love life. Once more she wondered why she even allowed the conversation to go on. She didn't care for the excitable man as far as she knew. Though she did love talking to him. She wouldn't admit that willingly unless he said it first. But she knew it in her mind.

"Cougar, just call me Cougar, Ms. Kiryuu." She liked the sound of his name from her lips. He was giving her obvious permission to use his first name. Not to many people was it an honor for the young doctor to call other's by their first names. She was too polite and most people she worked with called her by her last name anyway.

"Then just call me Mimori." He reached over with a hand and a gentle smile with sad green eyes that she loved, waiting for her to return the gesture in which she did. As she did, she felt her skin jump and a million……no, a stormful of little bolts pass through her skin and his, face getting flustered and all signs that she wanted to hit her head to get away. He had the same expression that she had to only be masked much quicker than she had her own somewhat attraction.

"Okay, Minori." Puffing up in anger, Mimori began to glow red in anger. She gave him the honor of calling her by her first name and he mocked her with it! Angrily, Mimori crossed her arms and began to glare at the offender. Her eyes focusing on his slightly tinged green eyes.

"It's Mimori!" Such a firecat when her passions were allowed to flare, he took notice gaily. She was such a different woman than he ever had fallen in love with or ever took an infatuation towards. He wondered if she really was going to loosen up otherwise she would be really fun to play with.

"Just kidding, Mimori! You should have seen the look on your face!" Standing up, he looked over the playground watching the children leave like the fall leaves into the classrooms where they were getting their items from class. Turning around to his converser, he let the biggest and most sincere smile escape his big lips. Flustered Mimori realized as she dropped her book to take his hand that maybe some days were better when things were misplaced.


I came up with this idea while I was remembering how my family was like at my first day of kindergarten. I went to a private school so I didn't get the cool kindergarten public school stuff that most kids got, like the buddy system and all that. So anyway, I was at first going to have Scheris be Mimori's kid, but I didn't think that would work out. Mimori and Scheris have more of a work relationship and a friendship than someone like Kanami who is more child-like anyway because she is younger and still pretty much a child.

No, I did not choose a father for Kanami from the show. My friends kept asking me about that for the last two days that I have been writing this. Kanami's father is where she got all her genes from basically while Mimori and her don't look alike. Kimishima doesn't have a mom from the show, like Kanami's father and I think the only parent figure that worked out perfectly was Asawa as Kazuma's mother. I can't see her settling down at all. She'd seem to be too wild, unbridled in a way.

Anyway, let's get off that subject. I watched Naruto on Saturday on Cartoon Network and I must admit they didn't do too bad a job. If you think they did, think of Naruto as if it was owned by FOXBOX, the retarded voice-screw ups of the world. Yeah, that's what I thought. Naruto's voice was pretty well thought out for him considering it's much like his Japanese one. Sakura's is not as squeaky and awful as it was in Japanese. They should have done a better job on Kakashi. I heard him speak on the little preview things and he should have had Sesshoumaru's voice actor. Kakashi is supposed to be sexay…….his voice actor's English voice is not conveying that wonderful message……….I nearly had my soul blackened to a little crisp for the utter hack job they did. Though compared to FOXBOX they did soooo much better. Such as a critical blow that severed their head from their neck and then a resurrection spell to make it all better……