After leaving the cat's room, finally free from the curse and Akito, it didn't take Kyo and Arisa long to meet up with Ritsu, Kureno, Momiji, Haru, Shishou, Kisa, and Hiro.
"How did this happen?" Haru asked, nervous and giddy at the same time. "One minute the plan's working perfectly, the next it's gone completely to pot, and the next the curse is lifted and Akito tells everyone to let us go?"
Shishou took Megumi from Kyo and Arisa and began bandaging his head.
"Victory party at my house!" Shigure suddenly announced over their walkie-talkies. "Make sure everyone knows!"
Kyo chuckled. "Rather than retell it a dozen times, I'll just tell everyone at the party."
"Party! Party!" Momiji clapped happily.
"Is it really over?" Hiro asked. "Permanently, I mean."
"That's what Akito said," Kyo nodded.
Haru suddenly stepped forward and hugged Arisa tightly.
"Hey! That's my girlfriend you're hugging!" Kyo shouted.
Haru stepped back, looking down at his still human hands. "Just checking," he said, grinning.
"Yay! Hugs for everyone!" Momiji said, leaping into Arisa's arms.
"You're so stupid," Hiro said, glancing uncomfortably at Arisa. "You can feel the curse is gone, you don't need to check." Despite this, Hiro kept looking hopefully towards Arisa.
Arisa, finally pried free from Momiji, rolled her eyes. "Fine, hugs for everyone."
Hiro looked down quickly, turning red. "I don't-"
Arisa hugged the boy from behind. "I know you wanted to try it, tough guy." Kyo glared at her, but she just stuck her tongue out.
Before heading out for the party Arisa had hugged all of the formerly cursed men, save Kureno, who had insisted it would be too awkward. Kyo and Arisa fervently agreed. Kisa wasn't left out either, sharing a hug with Megumi when he regained consciousness, thoroughly confused, but overall okay.
"Where is Shigure?" Kyo asked once they were at Shigure's place. Everyone but Shigure's group had arrived, though Rin and Kagura were currently off getting changed into something more comfortable.
"Sorry for the delay!" Shigure announced, entering the house, arms full of groceries. "We couldn't very well have a victory feast without food!" The rest of the group that had gone to the records building followed him inside, arms full of produce and other ingredients. "You'd best get cooking, Tohru, we've got a lot of hungry people here."
"Of course," Tohru said, hurrying into the kitchen.
Arisa smacked Shigure upside the head. "She's not your servant girl, you know!"
Shigure responded to this assault by hugging Arisa. She sighed in resignation, and pushed him off after a short moment.
"Anyway, tell us what exactly happened to break the curse," Hatori said.
"And we should invite over that kid who gave us the explosives. The more the merrier!" Aaya said.
"In that case we should invite Mayuko as well," Arisa said.
Most everyone looked at her. "Why?" Kureno asked.
Kyo sighed, and told everyone both about Mayuko and their back-up plan, and about the events that happened in the cat's room.
"What, you couldn't trust us enough to tell us about Mayuko and the back-up plan?" Rin asked angrily when he was finished. Hiro was also glaring at them.
"Don't be so upset, Rin," Kureno said calmly. "I'm sure it wasn't you they didn't trust." Kyo hadn't named names, but Kureno didn't need them to.
"Oh yes, we all should be so upset at Kyo and Uo, even though they were the ones who started this rebellion that has now ended the curse," Shigure said. At this Rin chuckled.
"Even I have to admit that I owe that idiot," Yuki said.
Rin laughed. With the curse broken, and everyone in such high spirits, not even Hiro or her could remain upset.
"Now then," Arisa said sternly. "I expect everyone who won't burn the house down or completely ruin the food to get in there and help Tohru cook!"
Most everyone, whether they were cooking or not ended up in the kitchen, or at least within shouting range, talking and laughing with everyone else, and exchanging hugs at the drop of a hat. They barely heard the knock on the door, announcing the arrival of Mayuko and Kakeru. This of course started another round of hugs, much to Mayuko's embarrassment, and Kakeru's enjoyment.
"I thought you said you had a girlfriend," Yuki asked him.
"True, but I'd have to be dead not to notice your hot cousins," Kakeru responded, admiring the view as Rin walked back into the kitchen. "What exactly is going on here, anyway?"
"It's a victory celebration," Yuki told him.
"And it has something to do with the explosives I gave you?"
"We actually didn't need those," Yuki said. "You can have them back."
"Great, where are they?"
"They're right over…" Yuki paused. "Actually, we left them somewhere. I'll get them tomorrow. Where did you get those anyway?"
"I'm a troublemaker with a lot of money," he responded casually. "So what are we celebrating and what were you going to blow up?"
"We're celebrating freedom, and we were going to blow up a building."
Kakeru looked at him blankly. "Can you be any more vague?"
"If I tried hard I'm sure I could be," he joked. "But really, if I gave you all the details you'd never believe it."
Kakeru shrugged. "Who am I to turn down a party like this one? But, can I ask just one more thing?" Yuki nodded. "What's with all the hugging going on here?"
Yuki laughed. "They're freedom hugs, and you'll see a lot of them tonight."
"I'm not complaining."
Mayuko wasn't really much for hugging, but that didn't stop anyone else from hugging her. Hatori also didn't do much hugging, so Arisa had to point it out when the two of them not only hugged, but seemed to stay that way for a while.
"Did you guys see that?" she whispered to Hana and Tohru.
"They would make a really cute couple," Tohru said.
"Their waves became quite soothing together," Hana agreed.
"Okay, first of all, she's our teacher," Kyo said to them. "Should you really play matchmaker with someone who can flunk you? And Arisa, I didn't think you were such a romantic." He paused. "At least not for other people."
"Forgive me for being aware of other people's feelings," Arisa said. "I may be a yankee, but I'm still a girl."
Kyo smirked. "I've noticed."
Arisa gave him a playful glare before continuing. "So are you saying you didn't notice anything going on there?"
"Everyone's been giving and getting hugs. Even Hatori. He may not be hugging left and right, but she wasn't the first one."
"And did he sit that close to the others?" Arisa asked, nodding towards the couch they could see in the other room. Indeed, while they still looked quite professional and disinterested, they were seated awfully close to each other.
"That… is a little odd," Kyo admitted.
"What's odd?" Mine asked, looking over their shoulders.
"Aaah!" they jumped. Mine was Aaya's assistant, but no one had realized she was coming over.
"I hope no one minds, but I invited Mine over," Aaya said loudly to everyone.
"Aaya, I can understand having Kakeru over, but Mine never had anything to do with the plan," Kyo said. "Why is she here?"
"Ah, young Kyo, still so naïve," Aaya said, shaking his head. "The answer is so simple. I can either have Mine over and hug her, or she could mind the shop and leave me to hug miss Uotani." At that Mine leaned back into Aaya, who wrapped his arms around her. "Which will it be?"
Kyo groaned, and went back to helping cook.
Once the food was all ready the entire group moved outside, setting up tables and picnic blankets.
Kyo sat down on one of the blankets and Arisa snuggled up against his chest. She wasn't usually one for cuddling, but just the fact that they now could cuddle made it more appealing. Kyo wrapped his arms around her protectively, sighing contentedly. He could get used to this. And while Arisa was too tough to admit it, it felt good to be held and protected.
"MY LIFE IS OVER!"
"Way to ruin the mood," Kyo murmured, looking for the person who shouted.
Shigure's editor, Mitchan, was approaching, clutching a letter in Shigure's handwriting. "HOW CAN HE HAVE FORGOTTEN WHAT HAPPENS NEXT! WHAT DOES HE MEAN HIS MEMORY WAS ERASED!" she wailed. Momiji suddenly flew through the air and ended up hugging Mitchan.
"You actually sent that letter!" Arisa yelled. However, Shigure was mysteriously missing.
"Don't worry," Hatori tried to calm the panicking woman and remove Momiji at the same time. "I assure you that Shigure has not forgotten what happens next."
"BUT HIS LETTER SAYS-"
"He's just teasing you," Yuki assured. "Again."
"I'LL FIND SHIGURE!" Ritsu said, charging off into the house. "YOU'LL SEE, EVERYTHING WILL BE FINE!"
"We ought to look too," Kyo said, reluctantly getting up from his comfortable position with Arisa.
Shigure was eventually found, sitting in his closet of all places. "Just cleaning," he had insisted. He almost got away again, but Hatori was able to stop him. With Mitchan reassured, and invited to stay (as they had plenty of food), activities resumed as normal. Mitchan received several more hugs, but didn't voice her confusion over the matter.
Finally, as most the food had been eaten, the leftovers dutifully put away by Tohru and the sky was darkening, a few of the more sensible people decided to head home. Hatori, Kureno, Mayuko, and Mitchan were among them. But most stayed around long after, falling asleep on the couch, the floor, or the picnic blankets under the stars. Others stayed up all night long. Kyo and Arisa did eventually fall asleep, lying together on a picnic blanket. They had to be woken up soon after if they hoped to make it to school on time. They barely got there on time, and were half-asleep, but happy.
Shigure eventually fell asleep on the couch. He was finally woken up when Kyo dropped his books on the table. Shigure checked his watched and yawned.
"You're home awfully late," Shigure mumbled.
"I had detention," Kyo replied
"Sleeping in class?" Kyo had only gotten an hour or two of sleep at most.
"No," Kyo said sheepishly. "Public display of affection."
Gravaja Umbros: Since this is such an important part of the story I decided to save my author's comments for after the epilogue, and do it the comments myself. Anyway, that's it; "Detention" is now over, barring any slight revisions and corrections I go back and make. This has been a great experience for me. For one, this is probably the first thing other than one-shots that I've actually stuck with to the end. This earned me over one hundred reviews before it was finished, most of them glowing. It has also taken me over two years to finish this. Now, no matter when it is you read this, still feel free to review. I would ask that anyone that makes it this far, even if they haven't reviewed any other chapter, at least leave a review for the overall story here. I thank anyone who has stayed with me this far, through the long delays and the chapters that weren't as good as I'd like them. Thank you everyone, it means a lot to me.