Note: Oshogatsu is the Japanese New Year. The Joya no Kane is a bell they ring to get rid of any worldly worries that torment man kind, this bell is rung at midnight. They also hang pine and a few other plants on the door to ward away evil spirits and such. White and red are colors normally seen around this time. Fine kimonos are also worn for the celebration.
Now normally, the Japanese New Year is three days, but for the sake of my sanity and this one shot, I'm just leaving it to the first day of celebration.
Finally, Happy New Years everyone!
Disclaimer: I do not own Yu Yu Hakusho.
Botan smiled happily, hanging the last of the red and white paper candle holders along the wall, "Finally done."
She, Yukina, Keiko, and Shizuru had woken up early that morning to decorate the temple for the ceremonial ringing of the bells and gongs around the temple. Of course this happened after the showing off of their Oshogatsu kimonos. Soon they would all doll themselves up, awaiting the arrival of the Reikai Tantei.
Genkai shook her head at all the decorations hanging up around her temple, "You girls sure did pull a number on this place."
"Cheer up, Genkai! The new year's arrived, good times are sure to come!" Keiko giggled, fixing a crooked row of pine, plums, and bamboo hung above the door.
Shizuru came up behind the old psychic and wrapped a mocking arm around her shoulder, "Yeah, old woman! Cheer up!"
Yukina giggled, stepping off of the stool she used to hang up her share of the decorations, "You shouldn't tease, Shizuru. Is the food finished cooking yet, Genkai-san?"
Botan's eyes lit up, "Is it, Genkai? I'm starving!"
Again, Genkai shook her head, "You'll have to wait until those morons show up."
Botan pouted, but nodded. Looking around, she smiled brightly. They really had turned the temple into a place fit for celebration. Twirling around, she almost lost her footing and laughed embarrassedly, "You girls ready to get dressed?"
She was answered with a chorus of excited accord. Grinning, she dashed into the temple and towards the closet holding all of their kimonos, followed by the other thrilled women. Genkai merely padded through the hallway, signs of boredom leaking from her aura. She always hated these big events. All the elder woman wanted to do was live quietly in her temple with the young koorime by her side to keep her company. But no, that wouldn't be allowed. Not with the power she held or the company she kept around.
Botan pulled her kimono out of the closet and ran to one of the guest rooms, and the action was repeated by the rest of the girls. She pulled on the layers and tied her obi, smiling at her reflection in the mirror. She'd bought the kimono for special occasions such as this, and was quite wound up. It was her first Oshogatsu party, seeing as Koenma would never let her off in previous years. The number of deaths always shot up during holidays.
Her kimono was a deep blue, with white and light blue bubbles, and to finish it off a dark blue obi. Ayame had helped her pick it out, saying it complemented her hair color. Speaking of her hair, Botan grabbed some pins off of the bureau next to her and stuck them in her hair, shaping her normal ponytail into a bun.
I always loved getting dressed up.
Satisfied with her appearance, she slowly turned the handle to her door and walked out, satisfied to hear squeals coming from her friends. She smiled her thanks and got a look at each of their kimonos.
Shizuru chose a red one with light pink sakura print, finished with a magenta obi. She also decided to do something with her hair and put it up in a ponytail.
Looking to Keiko, she had chosen a forest green kimono that had light green squares covering it, completed with a medium green obi.
Finally, Yukina was wearing a royal purple kimono with white snowflakes on it. Her obi was a lavender color. Instead of her usual red ribbon, she adorned a purple one to match her outfit.
Botan put her hand to her mouth and giggled, "We're going to knock those boys off of their feet."
Shizuru smirked, brushing out invisible wrinkles in her kimono, "You said it."
"Do you really think so?" Yukina asked shyly, a light blush forming on her porcelain cheeks. She wanted to impress Kazuma, and finally let him know that his romantic feelings were mutual.
"Without a doubt! Not only will we knock them off of their feet, we'll knock them dead!" Keiko proclaimed, grinning cheekily.
Genkai laughed from behind them, "I'm sure you will. Now help me set up the food."
The girls made their way to the kitchen, pulling out all of the snacks and setting them on the table in the dining room. The room was a decoration in itself. The walls were red, covered in gold paint, depicting the three worlds on three walls, and on the last wall was a painting of the shrine. The floors were covered in cherry oak wood, and white candles were set up all around. Genkai refused to follow tradition and hit any gong in her temple, so a radio was set up on one side of the room to hear the famed Joya no Kane.
Genkai herself decided she wasn't going to stick around long enough to hear the ringing of the bells, and was going to visit an old friend in another temple. According to her she didn't feel like being around her brat student after all of those horrid hours of training she put in.
When Botan sat the last bowl of snacks down, she glanced at the clock. It was almost eleven, and the boys would be showing up at any moment. As if on queue, a shoji was heard sliding open and Yusuke's voice echoed through the temple, "Yo! We made it!"
Keiko rushed out and Botan winced when she heard a sharp slap. She and the other girls in the room ran out to see.
"What a nice way to greet your friends on Oshogatsu, Yusuke!" Keiko snapped while he rubbed his stinging cheek. When the commotion was over the four girls looked to see what the Reikai Tantei were wearing, and there words turned on them. They were knocked off their feet- but they weren't the only ones.
Kurama adorned an olive green yukata with dark green fern print, Yusuke was wearing a checkered white and blue yukata, Kuwabara had on an orange kimono with red designs on it, and finally Hiei was wearing a blue yukata with white diagonal stripes on it. (Yes, I got their outfits from that one picture. Except Kuwabara, couldn't remember his n.n.)
Kuwabara blanked, looking at each of the girls, "You guys look great and all, but what are you staring at?"
Yukina blushed and smiled, "Nothing, Kazuma. How has your Oshogatsu been so far?"
Hiei glowered at the two and walked past them into the dining room, making sure to "accidentally" knock into Kuwabara. Shizuru heaved a sigh, "What's up with the little man?"
Yusuke chortled knowingly and pulled everyone else into the dining room after Hiei. Genkai would kill him if Hiei broke anything in a fit of rage. Botan laughed nervously as he kept his glare set on Kuwabara. Glancing back at her friends, she sweat-dropped.
Yusuke was grinning, holding up a bag full of bottles. Keiko's hands clenched, "Yusuke, I told you no beer!"
The boy just scratched the back of his head, "It's not beer, Keiko! It's sake! Now let's heat these babies up!"
"You know I meant no alcohol!" Keiko screeched, trying to grab the bag and throw it away, but Yusuke held it out of her reach.
Kurama smiled politely, "That's alright Keiko, I brought the sparkling cider."
Shizuru snickered, "Leave it to you, Kurama."
He just shrugged and set the sparkling cider bottles he brought on the table. Shizuru came up behind him and examined one of the bottles, "What kinds did you bring?"
Botan chuckled gleefully, restraining herself from jumping up and down.
Oh, I knew it! I knew it! They so like each other! I have to tell someone! I just can't keep it in any longer!
She glanced around the room, the closest one to her was Hiei. She frowned, he wasn't exactly a social butterfly. Looking around again, she saw everyone else was talking to each other. Sighing, she walked over to Hiei and he glanced up at her annoyed.
"What do you want, Onna?"
"Hiei, I have to tell you something!"
He shot her a look. When did they ever talk to each other?
"Why don't you go tell someone who cares?" He growled, glaring at Kuwabara, who was still hitting on Yukina.
Botan pouted, poking her fingers together, "Well, you're the only one available to tell right now!"
"If I listen, will you go away?"
Botan grinned like a cat, "Deal!" she stepped in closer to Hiei and gazed at Kurama and Shizuru, "Okay, I think they like each other! I mean, it's so obvious, right? Of course it is! Anyway, just look at them flirting!"
Hiei's eye twitched and he pushed her away from him, "I'd rather not sit and watch the fox try and court the oaf's sister."
Botan couldn't help but laugh out loud at that. Who knew Hiei had a sense of humor, even if he wasn't trying? She blushed when the room went quiet and her friends stopped all of their conversations to look at her and Hiei.
Yusuke walked over to them and stuck his face in theirs, examining them and rubbing his chin, "Are you guys actually… talking? And… laughing?"
Hiei snarled and shoved Yusuke out of his face, "Go drink your sake, Detective."
Yusuke's eyes lit up, "I always knew you were a genius, you goth munchkin!"
Keiko's face grew an angry red and she dragged Yusuke away from the two by his ear, "No alcohol, Yusuke!"
"But, Keiko!" He whined, digging his nails into the floor, trying to crawl over to where his sake was.
Botan giggled and skipped away from Hiei, deciding to finish their deal. Hiei leaned against the wall, getting comfortable. Yukina smiled at him, and ended her conversation with Kuwabara to go talk to him, "Is everything alright, Hiei-san?"
He nodded, looking at the wall across from him. Yukina beamed and walked over to the snack table, grabbing a few gingerbread cookies that were left over from the previous holiday.
Shizuru and Botan were huddled at the radio, "You like him, don't deny it!" Botan whispered to her friend, playing with the antenna.
"You're not one to talk. What were you and Hiei doing over there, hm?" Shizuru countered, smirking. Botan waved her hands frantically, blushing deeply.
"I-it was nothing like that! –Hey! Don't try and change the subject!"
Shizuru shrugged at her still red friend, and joined Yukina at the snack table. Botan huffed at her retreating form and turned on the radio. The annual ringing of the Joya no Kane was soon. She took a last peek at Hiei, going over what Shizuru said in her head. They never really talked or anything like that, but at least they didn't want to kill each other. She didn't think there were any deep seeded feelings there, but now she wasn't so sure.
That Shizuru, putting weird ideas in my head. I respect him and his power, that's all!
Botan shook her head, clearing herself of any sort of odd thoughts about Hiei, and she too joined the other two women at the snack table. She grabbed some fruit and put it on a small paper plate. She let out a pleased, "Mmmm," when she stuffed a ripe strawberry in her mouth.
Yukina took another dainty bite of hr cookie and swallowed, "How long are you all going to stay?"
Shizuru shrugged, "I think we're all staying until dawn."
"That's a long time," Yukina smiled, glad she had company longer than she thought she would.
"This is true," Kurama came up behind them and grabbed some snacks of his own, "I'm sure it will be an interesting party."
Kuwabara also marched over, "Hey, don't hog all the food you guys!"
Shizuru hit her brother over the head, "Don't be so annoying. There's enough for everyone."
Yukina started humming to the soft music emitted from the radio and Kurama smiled, giving out his hand to Shizuru, "Care to dance?"
"I'd love to," was his reply, and they walked over next to the radio and started dancing. Botan sighed wistfully looking at the two, "How romantic!"
I knew it!
Another two friends joined them at the snack table, Yusuke and Keiko. Yusuke pouted as he poured himself some sparkling cider. Keiko had finally just jumped on him and grabbed the sake from his hands, throwing the bottle in the trash. And he was not gonna go lookin' for it in there. Botan tittered, "No more sake, Yusuke?"
He glowered at his blue-haired friend and went back to pouting, grabbing some rice balls.
Keiko sulked, and pinched her boyfriends arm, "Don't be so lazy, and ask me to dance! Look at those two!" she pointed to Kurama and Shizuru, her eyes sparkling. They were in the corner, Kurama's hands at her waist and hers at his neck, whispering to each other about something.
Botan hopped on her one foot and chewed on her nail.
I wish I knew what they were saying! It's probably something mushy and cute!
"Fine. Wanna dance, Keiko?" Yusuke asked, rolling his eyes. Keiko nodded excitedly and hooked their arms, running over to about a foot away from Kurama and Shizuru, and started dancing.
Yukina giggled in amusement and sighed a minute later, glancing at Kuwabara. Botan smiled at the poor girl. She really did love him, she just didn't know how to express it, growing up in a completely female race.
It must be hard on her.
Botan poked her friend in the side, getting Yukina's attention, "Yes, Botan?"
She smiled suspiciously, "Ask him if wants to dance," Botan whispered, nudging Yukina slightly in Kuwbara's direction.
"What if he doesn't want to?"
"Are you kidding? He's crazy about you! He'll go nuts! He probably already plans to ask you when he's finished his rice ball. It's the perfect way to show how much you really do care back!" Botan encouraged, again nudging her in his direction. She was met with a grateful smile from Yukina, and the said girl walked unsurely over to her male companion.
"Yes, my snow princess?" Kuwabara replied with his mouth full, some rice falling out.
Yukina put her hand over her mouth to stifle a giggle, "Dance with me?"
Kuwabara's eyes lit up joyfully. His little ice cake was showing an interest in him! He grabbed her hands gently in his own, "Oh, my sweet! I, Kazuma Kuwabara, would be honored!"
The smile that formed on Yukina's face lit the room, and the two also walked over to the corner in the room to dance to the music.
Botan stood at the table, eating her fruit, trying not to glance at the couples longingly. She felt so lonely looking at them, and sort of stupid, standing there all alone. But she perked up, knowing she wasn't the only one. She quickly finished up her food and rushed over to the dark corner where Hiei resided during the whole party, leaning against the wall.
When she got there, Hiei's eyes were closed and he just completely ignored her. She cleared her throat a bit nervously to gain his attention, "Um, Hiei?"
One of his eyes snapped open, "Hn. What now, Onna?"
"W-well," She started stuttering and shut her mouth. It was a bit awkward to think about it, but she wanted to be over having fun with the rest of their friends.
"Spit it out," He grumbled, just wanting to be left alone.
Botan wasn't nervous anymore, more like aggravated, but it made it all the easier, "I say we go dance!"
"You say what?" His other eye snapped open.
"Well, y-you know, I don't wanna be the odd wheel out and-"
Hiei stopped her with a simple motion of his hand, "No."
"B-but," Botan pouted, pulling out her puppy dog face. Hiei simply narrowed his eyes at her and shook his head. She stomped her foot, "Come on, it's just this once! It's not like I bite!"
Hiei's eye twitched, quite irritated, "Onna, if I agree to dance with you this once, you will leave me alone for the rest of this party, is that clear?"
Botan beamed and grabbed his hand, starting to drag him over to the rest of their friends, "Crystal!"
Hiei awkwardly set his hands at her waist and Botan blushed before wrapping her arms around his neck. She glanced over at Shizuru who was smirking at her and she turned red, "I didn't know you could dance, Hiei."
"Then why did you ask me?" He leered at her, his sarcasm clear.
Botan huffed in indignation and turned her head again. They continued dancing until the music ended and the countdown until the ring of the gong began.
It was an unsaid tradition that you were supposed to have someone to kiss when the gong was rung, and Yusuke already seemed to be getting a head-start with Keiko.
Botan peeked to her side and noticed that Kuwabara and Yukina were following the unspoken tradition next. She felt Hiei tense angrily, but at the next number he seemed to have calmed down already. She hoped maybe he already began to accept the fact that his sister loved the human with a heart of gold.
Her next glance was Kurama and Shizuru. She heard the light whisper from Kurama, "I don't want to be just friends anymore," before his lips captured hers. Botan blushed, looking to Hiei. Talk about embarrassed.
A smirk was perched on Hiei's lips as she let out a shaky breath, "So, Onna, still don't wanna be the odd one out?"
Botan felt Hiei's lips pressed on hers and couldn't help but press hers back. The world around her suddenly went blank, so much to the point where she didn't even hear the Joya no Kane ring. All she noticed was the way his lips felt on hers, and how she didn't want it to stop.
She had a feeling they were going to be getting along a lot better from now on.
Happy New Year!