I Want U Chapter 16: A Moment in Time
It was the end of March and Mimi, who's almost seven months pregnant, was out with Matt and Tai enjoying the early spring weather, shopping around in downtown Tokyo. When she realized she was suddenly walking alone, she turned around to stare at the pair of best friends in anger.
"You know, you are supposed to be helping me shop for my baby shower!" Mimi yelled at the pair. "If all you're going to do is slack…"
"You know, Mimi," Matt interrupted the mother of his child. "Usually when a woman hosts a baby shower, she's supposed to let the guests she invites shower her with gifts. Get it?"
"Oh, poo!" Mimi dismissed Matt's comments by waving her hand. "I can still purchase a few things for my child, and my friends still can buy gifts for the baby shower. I'm not committing a crime, y'know?"
"But we've already stopped at six different stores!" Matt cried defensively. "What more does a child need?"
Mimi stared at him like he just grew a second head. "How could you ask something like that? I want our child to have the best that money can buy!"
Before Matt could protest, Mimi turned on her eight centimeter heels and furiously pushed opened the door to the world-famous Tiffany's jewelry store.
"You are keeping count on the money she's spending today, right?" Matt turned to his best friend.
"Yup." Tai replied as he pulled out a folded piece of paper from his pocket. He opened it to reveal the amounts Mimi spent so far from totaling her receipts.
"Right now buddy, your baby's mama has spent an average…" He retrieved his cell phone from its clip and accessed the calculator feature. After totaling the numbers, Tai gave the blonde his estimate.
"WHAT???" Matt's eyes grew large and his face shaded dark red. "How is it possible for someone to spend that much money in a day?"
"Well, you've obviously forgotten about the 'exclusive' American Express Black Card her father gave her for her sixteenth birthday." Tai replied with a shrug.
"Oh, man…" Matt slapped his forehead and groaned. "Who in their right mind would give a 16-year-old an unlimited credit card?"
"Well, apparently Mr. Tachikawa would." He and Matt felt it was wise to wait for Mimi outside of the jewelry store. "We all know he's solely responsible for spoiling Mimi rotten."
The future mother-to-be emerged from the jewelry store waving a rectangle-shaped, black velvet jewelry case.
"Guys, look!" she cried excitedly as she waved the velvet box in their faces. "I bought a rattle for the baby!"
"You needed to go to Tiffany's for a baby rattle?" Matt scowled at the blonde, his voice tainted with sarcasm.
"Yes." Mimi replied sarcastically as well. "I told you I wanted nothing but the best for our child! Why don't you want that for our child, Matt?"
Matt rolled his eyes and slowly counted to ten. He was quickly losing his patience with the young lady, but he knew he couldn't lash out at her. "I do want what's best for our child. I just don't think buying all of these expensive gifts is the best thing. You're going to spoil him or her rotten!"
"I'm the mother!" Mimi balled her fists and angrily glared at her unborn child's father. "That's my job!"
"No…Mimi…" Matt shook his head and spoke slowly like he was talking to a young child. He even cupped her chin for emphasis. "Your job is to love, nurture, and care for her or him. Our child don't need all of these unnecessary material things you seem to be so fond of."
"How dare you, Matt?" Mimi screamed at him with tears in her eyes. She felt hurt. After everything they've been through these past months he still saw her as the same materialistic girl from their childhood. Granted, a part of her will never change, but Mimi hoped by now Matt would see her differently. Obviously she guessed wrong.
Breathing deeply, Mimi calmed herself down before she spoke, again. "Well excuse me, Yamato dear; for wanting the shower our child with gifts I felt he or she would appreciate later in life." She wiped a few tears that slid down her cheeks. "If buying nice things for our child means I'm materialistic, then so be it. I'm not apologizing for that. I want my baby to have everything I had and more."
Matt rolled his eyes and looked away. Damn, now she's crying. I didn't mean to make her upset. Does pregnancy make all women's emotions go haywire?
"Okay, okay you two," Tai stepped in between the young parents. "Let's stop this unnecessary fight." Turning to Mimi, he said, "Just show us what you bought at Tiffany's, because we all know you won't leave us alone until you show us."
Mimi gave Tai a genuine smile. "You know me so well, Tai. Unlike some people…humph!" She turned her nose up at Matt, and then opened the velvet case.
Mimi revealed an average-sized rattle that was set in 18k white gold. White diamonds surrounded it, and the words, Baby Ishida were engraved in it. Also a yellow, satin ribbon was tied around it. "I had it customized months ago. I had to pick it up today. I wanted it to be a surprise to everyone at the shower, but some people have a way of ruining surprises." Again she shot Matt an angry look.
"Wow…" Tai whistled, narrowing his eyes from the diamonds that reflected the sun's rays.
Mimi closed the case and placed it in her Prada carry-on.
After remaining quiet for a short time, Matt finally spoke. "And just what exactly is a baby supposed to do with a diamond encrusted rattle? You're not worried about our baby possibly choking on one of the jewels?"
"Silly, Matt." Mimi giggled and waved her hand, dismissing his questions. "You're not supposed to let the baby play with it! It's supposed to be treated as an heirloom; y'know? Something to be cherished throughout the years."
"And just how much did you spend on this…heirloom?" Tai wondered as they began to walk forward to shop some more.
"Um…" Feeling embarrassed, Mimi looked away and replied, "Around ¥800,000…"
"WHAT?" the pair of best friends shouted in unison.
Sweat dampened her forehead and Mimi quickly tried to explain herself. "Well, I know it's a lot of money, but you can't put a price on a one-of-a-kind heirloom…"
"You spent ¥800,000 on a rattle that our child is never going to play with?" Matt wanted to grab Mimi by her shoulder and shake some sense into her.
"Well, gee, you make it sound stupid when you say it like that." Mimi marched ahead of Tai and Matt and pushed opened the doors to Gucci.
Again, Tai and Matt wondered if they should enter the store. "The girl…uh…" Tai couldn't remember what he was about to say. "Thank God she's not my baby's mama!"
Matt only scowled as his eyebrows twitched and asked, "How much?"
"Well, let's see…." Tai added the previous amount from Mimi's purchases to the amount spent on the rattle. "758,000 plus 800,000…" He added the estimates on his cell phone's calculator and released a low whistle of surprise.
"How? Much?" Matt repeated each word as he felt the little patience he had rapidly diminish.
"Uh…" Tai stole a quick look at his best friend before replying. "You sure you wanna know?"
"Just. Tell. Me."
"All…right… You asked for it…" Tai wisely took a few steps away from the blonde before he revealed the estimate, just in case Matt went ballistic. "¥1,558,000…"
"Oh. God." Matt's face paled, his skin became dampened, and his eyes enlarged an abnormal size. "Is. It. Even. Possible. To. Spend. That. Much. Money. In. A. Day?"
Tai slowly stepped closer to his best friend and patted him on his back. "You really have your work cut out for you… And I'm not talking about the baby…"
Matt turned to the brunette and slowly nodded. "I guess I'm glad that we never officially dated."
Tai raised a questioning brow. "So…you're saying you don't care about her?"
Before Matt could answer his question, Mimi held open the door for a store worker dressed in black carrying the recent items she purchased.
"Which way is your vehicle?" he asked her.
Mimi pointed to a silver Toyota Camry. "Right there." Turning to Tai, she said, "Hand me your keys."
Tai pocketed his cell phone, only to retrieve his car keys. He tossed them to Mimi, and she happily led the man to Tai's car.
Together Matt and Tai watched the man load a Gucci stroller, baby carrier, and diaper bag into the trunk where the rest of her purchases were located. Mimi thanked him and gave him a tip.
Facing Matt again, Tai asked, "And what was you saying?"
"Man," Matt stuffed his hands in the pockets of his slacks and looked down at the sidewalk. "I don't think I'll ever be able to afford her…"
"Tell me; is your band going to go platinum anytime soon?" Tai joked, attempting to add some humor to the situation.
Matt released a dry chuckle, and replied, "Outside of Odaiba, no one even knows who The Wolves are…"
Placing a comforting hand on his shoulder, Tai said, "Well then my friend, you're right. You're never going to afford her."
Mimi closed the trunk and waved at her friends. "Come on, guys! We're finished! I'm ready to go!"
Matt watched as a large, proud grin stretch her mouth, and her cheeks flush a deep, rose color. Her stomach protruded through the maternity shirt she wore…her belly swollen with his child. He chuckled when Mimi gave him a playful wink, and then blew him a kiss.
He knew. At that moment he knew that no matter how different they were, in spite of their different backgrounds, and opinions, it didn't matter about the money, and regardless how much they argue, he couldn't imagine his life without her.
He loved her.
And he didn't want to lose her.
Tai only nodded knowingly at his friend. "Come on, let's go."
- - - - -
A week later everyone gathered at the Ishida residence for Mimi's baby shower. Presents were scattered throughout the living room floor, and Mimi happily sat amongst them. Matt rested on the sofa watching as his father videotaped Mimi opening the gifts she received from him, his ex-wife, and TK.
Holding up a Winnie the Pooh gift set, Mimi presented it to the camera and gave Hiroaki a wide smile.
"That's from TK." Hiroaki told her as he zoomed in on the gift set. He turned the camera towards his youngest son, and said, "Anything you'll like to add, Takeru?"
"Uh…" TK looked towards the ceiling and blushed, while Kari gave the camera a "peace" sign. "Um… I'm going to be an Uncle, soon!"
"And I'm an Auntie!" Kari squealed. Facing Mimi, she cried, "Ohh, Mimi! Open my gift next!"
Hiroaki focused his lens on Mimi again, as she searched for Kari's name in the sea of wrapped baby presents.
"It's the one with the yellow duckies wrapping paper." Kari told her.
Mimi searched and found the present wrapped in the tacky wrapping paper. "Here it is!" Tearing open the paper, Mimi pulled out a Winnie the Pooh play set. "Oh…how cute!" she squealed girlishly.
"Learning is fundamental." Kari joked.
"Hold it up for the camera." Hiroaki zoomed the lens on the play set, and Mimi proudly showed it off.
"Thank you, Kari."
The camera landed on TK and Kari, again. She looked into the lens and grinned, "You're welcome, Mimi."
The front door opened and Jun, Izzy, Sora, Kagome, Joe, and Tai all walked in.
"Sorry we're late, Mama!" Jun shouted as the camera focused on the group. "We had a little bit of last-minute shopping to do." To prove she was telling the truth, everyone held up their shopping bags.
"Oh, that's fine." Mimi shrugged. She watched as everyone placed their shopping bags next to her. "As long as everyone brought gifts." She reached in a bag and pulled out a Winnie the Pooh car seat.
"That's from Joe and me." Jun announced proudly.
"Well thank you, J.J." she joked as she held up the car seat for the camera to see.
The gift Izzy and I bought is in the blue bag." Kagome told her.
"Alright." Mimi reached in the bag and pulled out a Winnie the Pooh music box. Mimi presented it for the camera and told the couple "thank you".
"Ohh…I'm next!" Sora spoke into the camera as the lens focused on her. "My gift is in the pink bag."
"Okay." Reaching inside the bag, Mimi retrieved a Winnie the Pooh plushy. "Aww…" Mimi gushed. "He's so soft! He's so cute! Lookie!" She showed off the stuffed bear to the camera.
"Did anyone get anything besides something from Winnie the Pooh?" Matt asked a little irritably.
"I did!" Tai cheered. "Mimi my gift is in the red bag."
"Fine." Mimi grabbed the bag to reach inside for Tai's gift. Grabbing it, she pulled it out and frowned at the doll. "Uh… Thanks, Tai…?"
"It looks like our mother-to-be isn't too pleased with her gift." Hiroaki said as he videotaped the entire scene.
Quickly recovering from her initial shock, Mimi looked at Tai and gave him a grateful smile. "Thank you, really. It means a lot."
"You're welcome, Mimi," Tai smiled back. "I thought my nephew could really use a Tickle-Me-Elmo."
"Well, I'm pretty sure our niece would prefer a Winnie the Pooh bear," Sora corrected her fiancé.
"Okay, okay you guys!" Mimi interrupted the lover's quarrel. "I just want to say thanks again for everyone coming here. I really appreciate it."
"Mimi, come on," Sora sat next to her best friend on the floor, after making some room through the pile of presents. "There's no way either of us would've missed your baby shower."
"Hey, I thought it was tradition for baby showers to have only women attending." Tai spoke.
"Well everyone knows Matt and Mimi aren't your traditional parents." Izzy joked as everyone laughed.
"Would the parents like to add something?" Hiroaki focused the camera on Mimi, and then turned to Matt who still remained on the sofa.
"Uh…we love you…?" Mimi said uncertainly.
"Little one…?" Matt added slowly.
Jun marched in front of the camera with her hands on her hips, and said, "And this is why people should wait until they're thirty to have kids!"
- - - - -
"I don't know what we're going to do with all of these gifts." Mimi yawned while she and Matt cuddled on the sofa together. It was late that evening and everyone left after the party ended. His father had to return to the television station and won't be home until early the next morning.
He rubbed her swollen belly before replying. "Yeah, right. Pretend like you're not enjoying all of these presents for the baby."
Mimi giggled playfully as she relaxed her back against his chest. Covering her hand over his, she said, "You still haven't bought our child anything."
"That's not my job." Matt kissed the top of her hair and rubbed his hands along her arms.
"Oh, really?" She scoffed and turned her head sideways to glance at her child's father. "Then what is your job?"
"My job is to provide you and the baby everything you need. You know, like a place to live, groceries, keeping up the utility payments, things like that."
"And what's my job?" Mimi wondered.
"Your job is to take care of both of your babies!" Matt joked. "You know you have to feed us, bathe us, clean after us, and…after you put Junior to sleep…you're definitely going to take care of me in the bedroom…" He nuzzled her neck, but Mimi pushed his head away.
"If you expect for me to do all of that during the day, then I can guarantee you that I will not be 'taking care of you' in the bedroom at night. I'll be too tired."
"Hmm…we'll see." Matt wrapped his arms around her belly, and Mimi covered her hands over his. "I love you, Mimi."
Mimi froze. She wasn't sure if she heard him right, but she wasn't about to ask him what he said. She didn't need to. She listened to his breathing even out, and felt his heart steadily beating against her back.
He'd fallen asleep.
Grabbing his hand to lightly kiss his knuckles, Mimi whispered, "I love you too, Matt…"
- - - - -
Jun smiled when she saw Joe approaching her. It was May on a late-spring Saturday and Jun told Joe to meet her at Odaiba Park. "I'm glad you came."
Joe embraced his girlfriend in a loving hug. "Of course." He held her hand and together they walked until they approached a wooden bench. When they sat down, he looked at her and asked her, "So, I'm guessing you wanted me to come here because you had something to tell me?"
"Do you have to be right all of the time?" Jun jokingly poked him in his chest with her fingernail.
"It's one of my many talents." He grinned. "Now, what is it you wanted to tell me?"
"Well, I…" Jun looked down and twiddled her thumbs. She decided it was best to avoid the subject of her for the moment. "I wanted to know if Tokyo U has contacted you about getting accepted in their school."
"Oh." Joe also looked away and shrugged. "Yeah, they've sent me a letter…"
"Really?" Jun immediately perked up. She looked at Joe, pestering him to continue. "What'd it say?"
Sighing heavily, he looked at her and said, "I got accepted. Starting this fall I'll be a freshman at Tokyo U."
"Oh my God!" Jun shouted happily. She wrapped her arms around her boyfriend and then kissed his lips. "I'm so happy for you! Wait?" She looked at him and raised her brow. "You don't seem too thrilled about this. Isn't this is what you wanted?"
"Before I met you, yes it was what I wanted." Joe took off his glasses to rub his sore eyes. Putting them back on, he looked at her and continued. "All I could think about, dream about was studying at T.U. in hopes that one day I'll become a doctor. But ever since I met you, my dreams changed. Now I'm deciding whether I should attend or not.
"Jun, I can't picture my life without you, now. I want you by my side, damn it, I want you. If I do decide to attend T.U. as a full-time student, where would that leave us?"
"Oh, dear…" Jun covered her mouth and looked away. She felt her warm tears brimming against her lids before they slowly trailed down her cheeks.
"I didn't mean to upset you." Joe placed his hand on her shoulder to get her attention. "I'm just being honest, Jun. I never really pictured sharing my life with anyone special, but you just kind of…happened… And I…" Joe adjusted his glasses and cupped her chin, forcing her to look at him. "I guess what I'm trying to say is…I love you, Jun."
"Joe…" Jun whispered as she quickly wiped her moist eyes. "I…I don't know what to say…"
Joe wrapped his arms around her and rested his chin on top of her head. "You don't have to say it back. No pressure, remember?"
Jun chuckled and buried her face in his shoulder. "I…I've been doing some thinking…about us. I…I love you too, Joe. Within these past months you've shown and taught me so much about myself. You opened my eyes and I really appreciate that. But…" she hesitated, not really sure if she should continue.
"Take you time, Jun." Joe gently stroked her cheek.
Inhaling deeply, Jun lifted her head to look in his dark eyes. "I… Prima approached me the other day with an offer…"
"What did she say?" Joe wanted to know.
"Well…" Jun wanted to look away, but she knew doing that would be rude. Instead, she swallowed her fears and met Joe's gaze with her own.
"She came to me and offered to teach me at her dance studio… And she also wants to personally take me under her wing…as her apprentice…"
"That's great news, isn't it?" Joe asked his girlfriend when he noticed her expression didn't contain an ounce of happiness. "I thought Prima Donna was one of your favorite choreographer. Isn't this is what you've been working so hard for?"
"She is and studying with her would be a dream come true." Jun's tears poured uncontrollably down her cheeks, and she didn't attempt to stop their flow. "But her studio is in New York! She's giving me until graduation to make a decision."
"Wow." Joe leaned against the bench and looked away. "I see."
"And, and I was wondering the same thing." Jun continued. "If I say yes and go to New York to study with her, where does that leave us? I love you, Joe; and I don't want to lose you, either."
"We'll have to figure something out." Joe assured her as his hold on her tightened. "We're both adult now, and there comes a time when we have to make sacrifices. Even though we're grown, we're still young and we have our entire lives ahead of us. This may be our chance to fulfill our dreams…"
"WHAT?" Jun angrily cried as she stood and faced him. "Are you saying that you don't want to be with me?"
"No!" Joe quickly replied. "That's not what I'm saying at all! What I'm saying is this is the time we need to get our lives together." He held her hands as he continued. "Even though you love me, and I you; could you honestly tell me that you're willing to sacrifice the chance of a lifetime of studying dance just to be with me?"
Jun looked away. She wasn't sure if she was ready to answer his question. "So instead, you're willing to sacrifice our relationship?"
"Jun." Again, Joe cupped her chin, forcing her to look at him. "I do want us to be together. But I don't want you to look back and regret ten years from now about sacrificing your dreams just to be with me. I want you to be happy, Jun. With or without me."
"I don't know what to do, Joe. I'm torn." Jun circled her arms around his torso and sobbed into his shoulder. "I…just don't know what to do."
"I love you, Jun," he whispered as he massaged her back. "And I know you love me. What I truly believe is if two people really love each other, and if it's meant to be, they'll separate; only to find each other, again."
Releasing her face from his soaked shirt, Jun looked up at him and asked, "So…are you saying what I think you're saying? Are we breaking up?"
"We have to follow our dreams, Jun." Joe tenderly caressed her lower back. "But I have faith that Fate will make sure we're back together, again one day."
"In one more month our lives will change forever…" Shaking away the thoughts, Jun whispered, "Just hold me, Joe. Like this. I don't want you to let me go. Not yet."
"Come on." Joe released his hold and grabbed her hand to lead her away from the park. "Today doesn't have to end like this."
"Where are we going?" she asked.
- - - - -
"Tai, can you come in here for a minute?" Yuuko asked her son from her bedroom.
"Sure, Mom!" Tai shouted. He left his bedroom and entered his parents' room. He saw his mother separating her jewelry from her jewelry box. Walking up to her, he asked, "Whatchu, doin'?"
Sighing, Yuuko sat on the bed and patted to a spot beside her. "Sit down, Tai. I want to talk to you."
Gulping in fear, Tai begin to wonder what he did this time as he did as he was told. "Uh, Mom? What is this about?"
"I've been doing some thinking," Yuuko began. "About last Christmas. That's what this is about."
Tai looked away and blushed. He thought his parents approved of him proposing to Sora, he must've guessed wrong. It really didn't matter, anyway. Both Tai and Sora were now eighteen, so their parents couldn't protest even if they wanted to.
"You haven't bought Sora an engagement ring, yet, have you?" Yuuko asked.
Tai shook his head. "No. Why do you ask?"
"I was cleaning out my jewelry box today and I stumbled up this." Opening her clench fist, Yuuko revealed a 1k diamond ring that settled in a 14k gold band. "It's my old engagement ring. Your father proposed to me when he was around your age, and I was thinking, 'Since Tai haven't given Sora an engagement ring, why don't I let him have mine'?" She smiled when she watched her son's eyes enlarge.
"It's a little dirty, and it doesn't shine like it used to, but you can take it to any jeweler and they'll restore it as good as new!"
Yuuko handed her oldest child the ring, and Tai hesitantly accepted it. "Mom…I…I don't know what to say…" He looked into his mother's brown eyes, and her smile widened.
"Oh, Taichi," Yuuko embraced her son and kissed the top of his wild hair.
"Mom…" Tai playfully whined. "Stop that!"
"Oh, hush!" Yuuko kissed his hair, again. "You'll always be my baby boy." Looking into his eyes, she asked, "I think it'll make a great graduation gift. Don'tcha think?"
"Thank you so much, Mom." Tai wrapped his arms around his mother, and clutched the ring in his hand.
"Sora will love it," Yuuko assured him. "Now go."
Tai stood and gave his mother another grateful smile before he exited her room.
Yuuko shook her head and smiled at his departing figure. My boy…has become a man…
- - - - -
A week later Tai and Sora were together at Odaiba Elementary relaxing at the playground. Sora sat on the swing while Tai stood behind her pushing it.
Turning her head slightly, Sora asked her fiancé, "Why did you bring me here? This is the same place where those first graders almost ambushed us."
Tai couldn't control the chuckle that escaped his lips. "Well, yeah, but this is also the place where we shared our first kiss."
Sora also smiled despite her attempts not to. "Of course. I didn't forget. But you still didn't answer my question."
"I was doing some thinking." Tai sighed as he continued to push the swing. "Next month we're going to graduate, and nothing will be the same between our group."
"What do you mean?"
"Matt and Mimi are expecting their child next month, Izzy and Joe has been accepted into college, and Jun's flying out to New York."
"Oh…" Sora's mood changed for a moment. "You're right. I forgot about that. I feel so bad for them."
"I suppose they made the best decision for their relationship." Tai stopped pushing the swing to massage her shoulders. "I could never figure those two out."
Giggling, Sora replied, "It wasn't our place to figure them out. Both Jun and Joe are two very mature people, so I'm sure they know what they're doing."
"I guess breaking up was their only option." Tai's massage deepened, and he smiled when he heard Sora's sigh of satisfaction. "It'll be pretty difficult to have a long-distance relationship."
"Yes it will." Sora agreed.
"Have you thought about what you're going to do after graduation?" Tai released his hold on her, and sat in the empty swing next to her.
"Sure I have." She shrugged. "I'm going to work full-time at my mother's shop and save some money; hopefully I'll get my own place…" Sora gave Tai a sheepish grin. "Oops, I meant we'll get our own place."
"Yeah, about that…" Tai looked away and sighed. "That's what I wanted to talk to you about…"
Becoming anxious all of a sudden, Sora looked at her boyfriend and asked, "Tai? What's wrong? What is it you need to tell me?"
Looking at her again, Tai grabbed her hand and said, "I'm sorry, Sora. I should've told you sooner… I got accepted into a university on a football scholarship…"
"Oh…oh, no, Tai…" Sora felt her eyes water, but the tears never came. "Don't tell me…" She shook her head to free her mind of all the negative thoughts that entered. "I don't want us to end up like Jun and Joe…"
"We won't, Sora!" Tai immediately responded, hoping he'll soothe her mind. "That's…that's why I plan to turn down the scholarship…"
"No, Tai!" Sora snatched her hand away from his. "I don't want you to give up your education for me!"
"But Sora, I thought…" Tai tried to speak, but Sora interrupted him.
"Tai, chances like this doesn't happen everyday. I want you to pursuer your education, plus I know you live for football."
"But what about our relationship? About us?" Tai wanted to know.
Sora shook her head and chuckled. "It's only five days out of the week you'll be gone. I'll have you for the weekends, and let's not forget the holidays…"
A wide, silly grin broke out on Tai's face. "Sora…are you saying…"
"You waited for me when I was with Matt, Tai. I feel it's only fair that I return the favor." A blush stained her cheeks, but she shrugged it away. "You don't have to worry about me. I'm not going anywhere. I'll wait for you for as long as it takes, Tai."
"Sora!" Tai happily cheered. He rose from his swing and scooped his fiancée in his arms. He swung her around, the entire time they both laughed.
Settling her down on her feet, Tai looked into her dark eyes, and said, "Thank you, Sora. For understanding. I love you."
Kissing him slowly, softly on his lips, she whispered, "I love you, too."
- - - - -
Tai sat in Matt's room a day later talking about the surprise his best friend had in store for Mimi.
Matt looked at the devilish, patent leather pumps that rested on top of his dresser like a trophy on display. He supposed those shoes were a symbolic like a trophy… Conquering Mimi was no easy feat, but he did, and she was his…
He still remembered the day Mimi wore them to school, along with the equally devilish white suit. He couldn't keep his eyes off her, and those shoes made his hormones skyrocketed.
She also flashed me her panties… Matt chuckled at the memory. That Mimi sure is something else… There was no way he was going to part with those pumps—or the owner for that matter. This is why he needed Tai's help.
"What's the big surprise you have for Mimi?" Tai wondered.
Matt walked away from his dresser to sit next to his best friend. "Well, for starters, I got a job at a local market… I start after graduation."
"That's great news, buddy!" Tai exclaimed.
"Thanks, man." Matt sighed and stared at those damned shoes, again. "I have also been saving some money. I found a simple, one bedroom apartment near my job for us to live in."
"By 'us', I'm guessing you're referring to you and Mimi? Right?""
Matt shot his best friend a look. "No shit, Sherlock."
"Hey!" Tai punched Matt in his arm, playfully. "You said you're renting out a one bedroom. But your baby's due next month. Where's the baby gonna sleep?"
"I dunno." the blonde shrugged. "The one bedroom is all I can afford, right now. I guess we'll cross that bridge when we get to it."
"Man…" Tai shook his head and exhaled. "Mimi's going to have to make some serious adjustments to change her extravagant lifestyle."
"Well, I'm hoping this'll change her mind." Matt stood and reached in the pocket of his jeans and pulled out a small, velvet box. He opened it before Tai could say anything.
Matt presented a silver engagement ring with a small, freshwater pearl in the center. "This is why I need your help."
"Whoa…" Tai stared at the ring, gaping. "So…you're ready to pop the big question, my friend?"
"I don't know, honestly." Matt looked at those pumps again, and suddenly everything seem to fall in place. Grinning, he replied, "Yeah…I am…"
"Why a pearl ring?" Tai also stood. "I don't understand…"
"One, I couldn't afford a diamond, and two, it's Mimi's birthstone. Her birthday is two weeks after graduation, so I figured I'll propose to her before Junior is born." He chuckled and Tai joined him.
"Well, I'm sure she'll love it. Especially since it's from the heart."
"I hope so."
- - - - -
Mimi just finished decorating her and Matt's apartment after the furniture movers finished setting up their new furniture. She flopped down on their brand new sofa, at the same time Matt entered their home.
He stopped at the door when he noticed their apartment wasn't bare, anymore. "Mimi…? Where did all of this come from…?"
Mimi gathered all of her strength to stand up, and waddle towards her baby's father. Outstretching her arms, she yelled, "Surprise!"
"What for?" Matt walked past Mimi to examine their new furniture.
"Matt, you've done so much for me and our baby. You've took on so much responsibility, and I'm forever grateful." Mimi admitted honestly. "So…I just wanted to say, 'Thank you'."
Facing her, he asked, "What did you do?"
"Well…" Mimi looked down at the carpeted floor and replied, "To show my appreciation…and to prove I was sincere…I sold the majority of my shoe collection on eBay… And with the money I made, I was able to afford to furnish our apartment. I know you said you'll provide for us, please don't be mad…"
Matt's face softened as he walked towards Mimi to embrace her. "Mimi, that's the most unselfish, sincere thing you've ever done. Thank you."
"You're welcome." Mimi clutched the back of his head to kiss him.
- - - - -
It was after graduation and everyone's parents gathered around their children to congratulate them. Everyone except for Mimi's parents. After nine months she still didn't tell them about her unplanned pregnancy. But with all of the time that passed she figured she didn't have to because she knew they were here.
Even with the heavy graduation gown she wore, Mimi knew not even that could hide the unmistakable roundness of her belly when she waddled the stage to accept her diploma. Her family knew and it was only a matter of time before they showed her how they truly felt about their daughter giving birth to an illegitimate child.
If my Mom and Dad could only see how much Matt cares for me, hopefully they'll be more supportive…
Again, Mimi searched around the thick crowd for her parents, but they were nowhere to be found. Giving up, she sighed and headed towards her baby's father.
Matt and Tai were discussing how they'll surprise their engagement rings to their loved ones when they noticed Mimi approaching them.
Quickly changing the subject, the pair of best friends looked at the very pregnant teen, and said, "Hi!"
"Hey, you two." Mimi walked towards Matt and circled her arms around his neck. Resting her head on his shoulder, she whispered, "I'm scared, Yamato…"
"About what, Mimi?" Matt barely had the chance to ask before he heard a shrill voice ring his ears.
"There you are, Mimi!"
Mimi looked up and to her horror she saw her angry mother, and father charging towards her. Trying her best to remain cool and casual, Mimi shrugged and greeted her parents. "Uh…hi, Mom…and Daddy…"
"I prayed it wasn't true…" Satoe snatched Mimi's arm and pulled the girl towards her. "I hoped that you were simply putting on extra weight, but no!" She ripped Mimi's grown and revealed her large, swollen belly to everyone. "You're pregnant!"
"Mom…" Mimi whined as she felt her tears sliding down her face. "Mom…I…I can explain…"
"What's there to explain?" Keisuke stared disappointedly at his daughter. "How…how did you allow yourself to get pregnant? We allowed you to attend school here because we knew how much you missed your friends, but we never expected this!"
"Daddy…" Mimi choked out as she blinked away the water from her eyes. "I'm…I'm sorry! But…but I'm okay…"
"Who-is-he?" Keisuke asked through clenched teeth. "Who's the person responsible for getting you pregnant?"
Mimi closed her eyes and turned her head away. She knew if she looked in Matt's direction, then her father will surely kill him.
"I am." Matt spoke out.
No, Matt! Don't! Mimi thought bitterly when she opened her eyes to look at the blonde. Please!
"You." Keisuke said the word with so much venom that it made Mimi's skin crawl.
"Yes. Me." Matt matched Keisuke's deadly voice with his own. "I…I really care for your daughter, sir…"
Satoe's grip around Mimi's arm tightened, and Mimi helplessly watched the interaction between her father and the man she loved.
"How could you…" Keisuke slowly advanced towards Matt, but before the blonde to do anything, he saw his father step in between them.
Hiroaki stood in front of his son to glare at Keisuke. "Now, Keisuke. I know this is isn't exactly what you pictured for your daughter, but these two people are crazy about each other. No, I didn't approve of my son getting your daughter pregnant, but what's done is done. Neither of us can change the past. Yamato truly does care for your daughter, and I know for a fact that Mimi's feelings are mutual. If you could just see…"
"I've seen enough!" Keisuke barked at the older man. "The only thing I don't want to see is your son, corrupting my daughter any longer! We're leaving."
"Leaving?" Mimi shouted through her tears. "Daddy, no! I wanna stay here with Matt! Daddy, I love him!"
Keisuke diverted his attention from Hiroaki to Mimi and his expression hardened even more. "No you don't. You just think you do. We're going to leave, and when you give birth to this…" he waved his hand in Matt's direction. "Person's baby, you mother and I are going to fly you back to New York so you can me a respectable man. Not some garbage that's from the wrong side of the tracks!"
"Now look, Keisuke," Hiroaki's face turned tomato-red when his former friend insulted his son. "You have no right to insult my son…"
"I don't have to listen to you!" Keisuke shouted. "And I don't have to stand here and deal with this any longer!" Directing his attention to Mimi again, he said, "Tachikawa Mimi, you have shamed this family! Now I don't want to stand here and listen to this any longer! You're coming with us and that's final!"
Keisuke led the way out of the school and Satoe pulled Mimi forward to follow.
Mimi looked back at Matt who was desperately trying to pry himself from his father's arms. "Matt…! No…!" she cried desperately.
"MIMI!!!" Matt shouted back, but his father's arms wouldn't budge. He helplessly watched as her parents dragged their crying daughter out of the school and out of his life…
- - - - -
It was an entire month later and no one spoke about what happened at graduation. Joe left for Tokyo University, and Jun flew out to New York. Tai's now studying at his university, and Izzy is also attending school. Sora's a full-time worker, and Matt is still employed at the local market.
After returning to his apartment from work, Matt settled himself on the sofa that Mimi bought with the money from her shoe collection. A whole month passed and he hasn't heard anything from her. He couldn't contact her because her cell phone number changed, and he didn't have any clue how to track her down.
He looked around his apartment, and wanted to shake away all thoughts of her, but everything reminded him of Mimi. He couldn't let go of his memories of her, and if he was honest with himself, he didn't want to.
Sighing, Matt decided to prepare himself for bed, but there was a knock at the door. Becoming curious, he opened it and saw no one standing on the other side. Just as he was about to close the door, he looked down and saw a bassinette.
Kneeling in front of it, Matt saw a pink face staring up at him with wide, brown eyes. The baby was dressed in blue and in his lap was laying an envelope. Picking it up, Matt noticed that something was sparkling from underneath the blue blanket. Deciding to inspect, Matt reached under the blanket and picked up a white-gold, diamond encrusted rattle.
Immediately his senses went on alert. Matt stood and stepped out in the hallway. "Mimi! Mimi!" He shouted again, and again but she was no where to be found. Turning around, he looked down at the bassinette again, and sighed.
The baby looked up at him curiously and yawned.
Kneeling in front of the bassinette, Matt fingered the baby's smooth, round face. My son…
- - - - -
Nesha: Damn, I thought this chapter would never end!!! Yes, it's over. This is how it ends. I know you all are mad at me right now, and please feel free to let me know!!! And for those of you who have this story on their alert and favorite list, I would greatly appreciate it if you'll at least review the final chapter! That's all I ask! You don't have to review every chapter, but I would really like to know how you feel about the ending to I Want U.
Also on mm(dot)org there are End Notes. So, for those of you who have any questions in regards to this story, they can be found there. If you're reading this on ff(dot)net, then all you have to do is click on the I Want U link in my profile and scroll down to End Notes. Everything about this story is explained there.