Standard disclaimers apply…

Fuuko, the Housewife

"Mi-chan, where should I put the pitcher?"

"Fridge."

"And these plates?"

"Sink."

"And your clothes?"

"Laundry."

Kirisawa Fuuko, wearing a pair of her former teammate's slippers and a pink apron she borrowed from her mother, hurriedly tossed the bundle of clothes hanging on her arm to the empty laundry basket. She then hurried to the kitchen where a pot of stew was set to boil on the stove. Taking the lid off, she breathed in the scent of the food before picking up the ladle to stir the substance. She placed some of it to a little plate and lightly blew to reduce the hotness of the appetizer.

"Mi-chan, you okay there? Should I be the one to wash your clothes?" she called out after deciding that the stew was good enough.

Silence met her questions.

"Mi-chan! You okay there!" she called even louder.

"Yeah." came the faint reply.

The wind girl ladled some of the stew into a medium-sized bowl, knowing that he wasn't much of a plate buster. So unlike her two bestfriends, Hanabishi Recca and Ishijima Domon.

Speaking of Recca and Domon… she thought. Where could those bastards be now? They promised to help me here…

Placing the bowl of hot stew together with a spoon over a napkin and a glass of lukewarm water on a tray, she proceeded on to his room.

Mikagami Tokiya lay on his bed, tucked under the thick bed covers, with a thermometer stuffed inside his mouth (Fuuko forcefully shoved it to his mouth, actually). Add to that his flushed face that crumpled to a scowl the moment he saw her.

"Gee. Doesn't the fridge master look so innocent and gentle lying like that?" Fuuko teased upon entering. She placed the tray of food above his now clear side table before pulling the thermometer from his mouth. "Tsk! Tsk! 38˚C. quite a fever, huh? Mi-chan?"

"Don't start it, Kirisawa. I'm not in the mood."

"And in the health, I must say." Fuuko chuckled. "Here. I cooked chicken stew for you. My mom told me it's good for sick people."

"Is flaunting that superficial fact on my face necessary?"

"That you are currently sick and under my care? Why, yes, yes. Of course. That way, you can always be reminded that you are to follow me."

A grunt.

"Now, now, my dear boy. Don't be too grumpy. You'll recover faster if try to extend those lips of yours in both directions." she continued saying. "Sit up, honey. Do sit."

"Don't you honey me, monkey!" he scowled, yet, again. But instead of getting annoyed, she, in turn, laughed at him.

"Here. Try this. Proudly Kirisawa Fuuko-chan made!" her tone was most boastful.

"Is this edible?" he eyed the bowl of stew handed to him after sitting up.

"What an arrogant bastard! It took all my effort to make and prepare this…" she involuntarily shuddered thinking of how she almost sliced her own fingers instead of the vegetables. "… and that's all I get? Don't you have any sense of gratitude?" her right brow ascended a few centimeters higher than the left.

Fuuko watched him take his first sip of her cooking. She patiently waited for his reaction. He had swallowed a good amount of the food but still, he did nothing to comment. Tokiya had noticed only a little later that she was watching him. He shifted his eyes to her.

Sky blue clashed with purple. Invisible currents ran to and fro their oculars.

"Decent enough. But not quite good, though." He resumed eating, Fuuko's chicken stew warming his previously complaining stomach. He heard her chuhckle, making him look back at her. "What?" he asked.

"Why won't you admit? My cooking IS good. And you know it."

"Give me a break. I said it's DECENT ENOUGH."

"Whatever. You're most graciously eating it, anyways. Oh, by the way, would you like me to wash your clothes? I can do that since I don't have much to do today."

The ensui wielder shook his head. Truth be told, Fuuko's help for the past two days had been too much for him; considering that they were not exactly close before. "I can have that washed in a laundry shop. Helping me here is enough."

"Oh? Is that the iceman talking? And since when did you start caring for me?" she cocked an eyebrow. She was mocking him. Again.

"Who told you it's all about concern? I just don't possess enough courage to entrust my clothes to you. Who knows, you might create potholes in them?" he answered before finishing the last of his stew. She took it from him before replacing the bowl with the glass of water. She waited until all the liquid was drained.

"Finished, at last. I though it'd take you forever to stomach my meal."

"I'm glad you used your brain to prepare something easy to digest."

"Whatever…" she rolled her eyes as she stood and picked the tray up. "You lie down again and rest. I'll just wash the rest of the plates and prepare your dinner a little later. Oh, I have to clean you kitchen, too. It's all in a mess…" she slowly turned when her tongue slipped. "Not that much, mind you." Fuuko quickly amended.

"What have you… done with my kitchen?"

"Nothing. I just… did not clean up at once. Just rest, okay? Geez… Recca and Domon sure took their time out, ne?"

"What Hanabishi and Domon are you…" he eyed her suspiciously.

"Well…" the fujin mistress gulped, remembering she had not asked Tokiya's permission for Recca and Domon to come to his house.

"They are NOT to enter my house." The edge in his voice was evident.

"C'mon, Mi-chan. Just rest! I'll take care of everything, okay? Leave then to me." She grinned at him and turned on her heels but stopped with his remark.

"You are acting like you are my wife, Kirisawa." A rare uplifting of a corner of his mouth was visible, unfortunately, not to her for her back was facing him. "Look at you. Except with your school uniform, you look like a devoted housewife."

"What… what the hell are you saying, you polar reject? It's not… it's not…" the wind child sought for words to complete her statement but found none. "Aaaarrrgh! You polar bear descendant! Thank Kami-sama that you are sick or I would have wrung that damn neck of yours with my fujin!" she stomped her feet before walking out and blushing like mad. Her voice echoed as she went back to the kitchen to attend to her "chores".

Back to his room, Tokiya could only shake his head while chuckling in amusement. He closed his eyes. She will not leave him, right? He is, after all, sick. Sick people need all the care and nourishment for them to recover.

His hand crept to his forehead to feel his own temperature.

"Damn. I really am sick."

-- owari --

author's notes: thanks to those who reviewed Of Subtitles and Musical Pieces and The Punishment Chocolate! Glad you liked it! Anyway, another short fic that happened on a random day… please read & review!