She'll most likely be the death of him, but God help him he just can't get enough. Oneshot

Disclaimer: I don't own. Inspired by Howie Day's "Collide."

Author's Note: Rather pointless, really, but I'm throwing it out anyway. To make it clear, it's about Susumu and Yuuko Yagami (Taichi and Hikari's parents).

It's bubbling. Bubbling and sputtering as it chokes and drowns in a sea of thick red curry.

You tell yourself it must be your imagination. That has to be it. There's just no way—Oh God, did it just move?

She frowns, poking the squishy, soggy mess with a finger. "Well, I know it doesn't look exactly like the picture but still…."

You're thinking it looks the farthest thing from any edible mutation of such a simple recipe it could be, but she's looking at you expectantly and you're trapped, gripping onto the sports section of the newspaper for dear life, knowing if you let it go, chopsticks will find their into your shaking, reluctant hands.

And your son is smirking from across the table, twirling a pencil between his fingers with his football playbook in front of him, and your daughter smiles at you sympathetically, encouragingly, nibbling on her fingernails.

They're staring at you unwaveringly, but all you can see is the atrocity in the plastic bowl she's still holding out to you, waiting.

You carefully set your paper down, folding it immaculately.

"What'd you say it was again?" you ask offhandedly, stalling for time.


You suppress a shudder.

But because she's looking at you like that, you feel now's a good enough time to take a risk and be fearless, though you're insides are quivering and so is this squid. This disturbs you, but you say nothing.

Very carefully, you dip your pinkie into the red curry sauce and lick your finger. Your eyes are stinging.

"Amazing," you cough and cough and she beams.

"Really? You like it?"

"Oh—," you try to say, but your throat's on fire and the world is swimming in front of your eyes and your son is laughing and you would like very much to smack him with your newspaper if only you could see straight.

And now you're wondering how you got this way, how you ended up like this. You're thinking of what your parents raised you to be and how you wanted it all, too, you really did—until the day you tripped walking out of your first university class and you fell flat on your face in front of your crush, the most beautiful girl you'd ever seen, and you watched, humiliated, as she got to her feet and walked away with her friends, giggling. And when you tried to gather up your things, you saw bright red sandals come to a stop in front of you, and you dragged your gaze up to see that weird girl who rides your train holding out one of your stray notebooks, grinning away, waiting for you to respond, and you couldn't help but be a little scared of her when she looked at you like that.

Like you can't help but be scared when she looks at you now, still holding out her newest culinary creation, waiting for you to trust her.

And you're thinking she's got to be craziest woman you've ever met—insane, even, and you wonder if perhaps your parents were right.

But you shake your head to banish the thoughts and gently kiss the sprinkle of flour from her chin.

She raises an eyebrow, surprised, and your daughter's giggling and your son's pretending to vomit, but all you can see is the weird girl who helped you pick up your books and pencils and every now and then tries to kill you, when she really just wants nothing more than to make you happy, wanting to be exciting and beautiful for you though you always tell her you don't care about that stuff anymore. And you really don't, because she's more than enough. This is more than enough.

Now you're certain that she's taken years off your life, and you'll be sorry for eating the squid tomorrow morning, but right now you don't mind so much because she has her arms around your neck and she's almost choking you in her tight, warm embrace, so happy that you're eating the dish.

And one of these days, she'll be the death of you, but you're thinking it's okay. It'll all be okay. You'll be fine, she'll be fine, the kids will be fine. How could you have ever wanted anything more?