Author's notes: Written in response to A.E's smell challenge on SHINE.
There's something about this that I don't like…the feel of it…I don't know, but to me there's something wrong with it. But it's the best I've got at the moment.
I asked my best friend and BETA reader if it was ooc, and if she could find anything to improve, but her reply was "no it's prefect". So I'll post it as is…but I'd appreciate the feedback, because this just doesn't sit right with me at all.
Haruhi yawned widely.
"Are you alright, Haruhi-kun?" asked one of Haruhi's customers concernedly.
"Yes, I'm just tired," Haruhi reassured, stifling another yawn. "Dad woke me up again when he came in last night. They have a new guy at the bar and they've all been very excitable recently. Don't worry about me, I'll get some sleep when they all-" she stifled another yawn "-calm down. Excuse my rudeness, ladies."
"You don't have to stay here for us, Haruhi-kun," another girl announced valiantly. "You can go home and get some sleep, we won't mind." All the other customers nodded in agreement.
Haruhi gave them her winning smile. "Thank you; but I don't think that's possible. I don't want to miss any time spent at the host club." The girls blushed and returned her smile tentatively.
Kyoya wouldn't be very happy if I skipped out, and missing a meeting really isn't going to help my debt, Haruhi reasoned silently.
Nevertheless that afternoon's club did not go well. Haruhi spilt the tea and was incredibly distracted simply trying not to fall asleep. When Kyoya pulled her aside at the end of the afternoon and threatened to increase her debt due to the fact that she had been steadily loosing customers over the last week Haruhi began to wish she had taken the afternoon off after all.
"What's wrong Haru-chan?" Hunny asked her worriedly.
"I've just not been sleeping well. I'll be fine, Hunny-senpai."
Sleepily Haruhi made her way through the school. She had so much still to do tonight: shopping, homework, preparing food. Yet all she wanted to do when she got home was curl up in her futon and sleep.
Walking across the courtyard Haruhi looked up at the sky. In the distance, hovering threateningly, was a great, brewing storm cloud. Her eyes locked onto the monstrosity and Haruhi shivered. If that cloud moved in this direction Haruhi knew she would get no sleep tonight, scared as she would be alone in the house.
"Haruhi! Haruhi!" called a voice desperately. She heard footsteps, and tore her eyes away from the cloud in time to see Tamaki skidding around the corner. "Haruhi, there you are!"
"Tamaki-senpai?" she replied, confused. "Did I forget something?"
"No. Are you alright, Haruhi? You nearly fell asleep again today."
"Yes, I'll be fine. Thank you for worrying, senpai."
"Here." He thrust a purple fluffy thing under her nose. Closer inspection revealed it to be a stuffed lilac bunny which smelled strongly of lavender.
"Senpai?" she asked curiously, lost for words and left wondering if he'd gone temporarily insane: surely it was Hunny's job to wave stuffed animals in her face?
"There's a storm tonight, Haruhi, so I knew you'd struggle to get to sleep. I've been researching commoner cures to everyday illnesses or problems. It's for those who can't afford medicines and the like. Lavender is supposed to be relaxing and help in sleep. I just hope it helps."
Haruhi looked from the toy to the blonde's hopeful face and back again. Well, at least he was trying, although she doubted that the stuffed rabbit would do much to calm her down when the storm hit tonight.
"Thank you Tamaki-senpai," she said eventually, smiling at him gratefully.
"I-it's nothing," he replied, blushing bright pink. "See you tomorrow." He ran off, muttering about his precious daughter being so cute, leaving her to contemplate his odd behaviour on her journey home.
She lifted the toy to her face and sniffed. Surprised, she found herself relaxing as the warm scent filled her nostrils. The smell reminded her of the idiot king, of course.
Haruhi Fujioka slept like a log that night, in the most peaceful and deep sleep she had had in several weeks. She was not woken by the storm nor were her dreams disturbed by the fear of the thunder. The scent of lavender filled her apartment, and she felt safe surrounded by the smell that had come to remind her of Tamaki.
Author's note: The bunny in question actually exists, and was a birthday present given to me by a friend…and it really does help me sleep!
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