Yeesh, its been awhile. Sorry guys! I won't talk anymore, so hope you enjoy!
Disclaimer: get a clue, it ain't mine.
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The next morning Tohru opened her eyes before Ayame did. She noted, warmly, that he had held her hand the entire night, not once releasing it. Ever so slightly she both pulled their entwined hands up to her face as she lowered her head to them. Softly, she rubbed her cheek against his fingers.
The man ever so slowly began to awaken, and upon seeing her smiled. A rosy blush came to her cheeks as he gazed at her with such tender affection. "How do you feel, Tohru?" he asked, quietly.
"Better," she mumbled. "Ayame, I'm sorry. You've been dragged into a mess because of me. Her smile began to disappear.
With quick movements Ayame quickly slid himself up onto the bed, laying himself down next to her. "It does not matter. I would do anything for you, Tohru-kun. You are my little flower, my precious onigiri."
She giggled at the nicknames. "Thank you, Ayame..." Instead of replying, he leaned his head towards hers and lightly kissed her forehead.
For awhile the two just lay there staring into each other's eyes. Soon Ayame sat up, and though he hated to do so, took his hand from Tohru's. "I'm afraid we still have a lot to do, Tohru-kun. Your face is all over the news. No where we go in Japan will be safe, not unless you change your looks."
The content smile again slid from her face. "Change my appearance? But how?"
"In ways that we both may regret. Your school uniform, for one, must go. It is too easily recognizable. You're beautiful hair, will need to be cut, and most regrettably, temporarily colored. Your clothing style, thankfully, can be altered. Little changes, though radical enough to hide your identity. And a new name, for in public, may be necessary as well."
The girl turned over onto her back. "Cut my hair?" she fingered the strands fondly. "Well, if it must be done..." she turned a quizzical eye towards him. "And what is wrong with my clothing?" she asked, teasingly.
The designer blushed. "I merely am not fond of allowing the girl I love to parade around in another person's creations. I'd much rather you wore some of mine. I have one such outfit in my car."
Tohru turned scarlet. Did he really just say that?
Ayame saw the blush, and grinned, lovingly at her. "And I know full well what I just said, Tohru-kun. I am completely and irrevocably in love with you."
Not knowing how else to say it, and feeling very bold, Tohru sat up, clutching the blanket to her chest. With a tentative movement, she kissed his cheek. "I... I love you, too, Ayame..." With tender movements, Ayame caressed her cheek with his hand. Ever so slowly and softly, he traced a thumb over her lips, before replacing it with his own. It was a gentle kiss, and though they both knew it was not her first, thanks to the water incident the night before, they counted it as their first real kiss together.
They drove to Kyoto and beyond, going to the farthest most corners of the country. Before they'd left the hotel Ayame had cut the long strands Tohru had grown since child hood into a style most like what her mother had switched to. With a dye he'd bought at a nearby store he colored it the same fiery orange as Kyoko's. Now wearing a light pink dress with a lower neck than she'd have normally preferred, Tohru sat comfortably in the front chair, with the exception of the various wounds all over her body.
"How shall we be able to live out here?" she asked. They had no money after staying in the hotel, and no place to stay out in the country. It was silent knowledge that they would have no help unless they both found jobs immediately after finding a place to settle.
"With luck there shall be a hot springs resort where we can live and work. When we have made enough I shall open up another store, and hope that it thrives as much as the one in Tokyo did. Mine can send some things to us after we have found a place to stay and a phone to borrow. I apologize, Tohru-kun, for this shall not be easy for either of us."
She shook her head. "It's all right. I don't mind hard work."
The man smiled, and took her hand. "Let us hope for the best."
"So let me get this straight. You two are engaged, have no money, jobs, or home, and want to work here while also being temporary residents?" Oya asked the two.
Ayame nodded. "Yes, ma'am. We have been forced out of our homes by that storm that blew through Hokaido recently. It destroyed everything we had, and we came out here in hopes of escaping more tropical storms and of rebuilding our lives together. I assure you we are hard workers, and will do our best to help this resort prosper."
She didn't look convinced. "What were your jobs before you lost your home?"
"I owned my own clothing chain store; for I am a designer; and Arisa here was a janitor. She is highly skilled in the arts of housekeeping and cooking."
The old woman thought it over. "Well, all right. I shall allow you to stay here for one month. If after that time you have not proven yourselves prosperous to my business, you go to the streets. You will be fed and clothed, and for this first month shall receive no paycheck for your work. After wards you shall receive payment for everything that you do, on top of a continued boarding here. Sundays I shall allow you both to take the day off to rest, otherwise, you work your shifts without complaint. Am I understood?"
Eagerly, the two nodded. Tohru bowed. "We thank you for all of your kindness, Oya-san."
She nodded. "And one more thing. I am an old woman and as such have older morals than most young people these days. I shall not allow you to stay in the same room until you have wed, which I encourage you to do soon. It is not my business, but I know the minds of some of my employees. The women shall fall all over you, Ayame-san, and the men shall be quite lecherous over a girl such as yourself, Arisa-san. The sooner you have proven your claims on each other, the better, and I wouldn't mind seeing another couple happily married in one of our gardens. The many festivals are always a favored time for people to marry, and though I do not know either of you that well as of yet, I do wish to see you happily married."
"You are too kind to us, Oya-san." Tohru beamed, bowing again. Though the engagement was part of their cover story, as was Tohru's adopting her best friend's name, the idea excited Tohru to no end.
They left the room, and another worker showed them to their rooms, which were next door to the other. Inside were some robes for them, and after changing into them, the couple came out, smiling.
"They are not my designs," Ayame said, "but you are beautiful in them regardless."
"Thank you, Ayame. You are quite handsome yourself, though I rather miss your elaborate outfits already. Shall we go see where we can help out?"
He nodded, and reached for her hand. "Let's."
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Not exactly the ending I was hoping for for this chapter, but oh well. I wanted to update it. Hopefully I can get more done soon, but don't hold me to that! I do an insane amount, as anyone who knows my schedule will tell you. Let's just hope though! And also, know that I require five reviews for an update as well, unless I get too bored of waiting. So please let me know what you thought!