So... this is my first "official" serious attempt at a fluffy oneshot? Yeah... I usual don't write fluff -- maybe I should do it more often. Anyway this was inspired? I guess... by a beach trip. For those of you that have read Hana Kimi, chances are you know it doesn't end like this. This takes place after Mizuki decides to leave the school so... anyway... onto the story? Yeah... that thing. Hope you like it!

Disclaimer: I don't own Hana Kimi... blah blah blah... you know the drill

Vanilla and Chocolate Swirls

White clouds floated lazily through the deep baby blue sky as Mizuki stood on the boardwalk waiting. Her stomach was currently in knots of anticipation, doing somersaults worthy enough to be the envy of any world class gymnast. Beside her, her friend Julia was continually checking her cell phone. The soft summer wind gently lifted and played with the soft strands of Mizuki's hair. It had grown longer since Mizuki had returned to the states from Japan, though that wasn't the only thing that had changed.

It had been several months since Mizuki's return from Osaka High, an all boys' school in Japan she had attended in order to get closer to her hero, famous high jumper, Izumi Sano. Since then, the girl had traded in her boyish style and way of life for her life before Osaka had entered it. Mizuki was currently dressed in a cream white sundress that came down to her knees. Large pastel yellow and honey brown sunflowers decorated the bottom hem of the dress, while simple gold accents trimmed the edges to complete the look. A pair of cute sandals made Mizuki two inches taller than her actual height. Her hair had grown out of its boyish cut and now brushed the tops of her shoulders. Her bangs were tucked behind her ears, leaving her feminine face for all the world to admire.

"Hey! I think I see them!" Julia suddenly shouted as a tall figure headed in their direction.

Sano! Mizuki's heart leaped with joy at the thought of seeing her crush again.

"JULIA! ASHIYA!" the person cried as he reached the two girls.

Grinning with excitement, the young man enveloped the two girls in a tight bear hug. Laughing Mizuki looked up at the face of her friend. He had hardly changed. The boy's hair was still its unruly bleach blond color and his eyes danced with excitement. Even though he was wearing a green polo shirt and khaki colored cargo shorts, he was still unmistakable.

"Nakatsu!" Mizuki grinned as her friend released her from his embrace.

"It's good to see you!" Nakatsu cried, his happy grin almost taking over his whole face. "Wow! You look great, Ashiya."

"Thanks." Mizuki blushed at the compliment,the only time Nakatsu had seen her in a dress was during the festival back at Osaka High.

As Nakatsu turned his attention toward Julia, Mizuki noticed that Sano was nowhere in sight. Where was he? He had promised her that he would be arriving with Nakatsu. Seeing her searching gaze, Nakatsu answered the girl's question.

"Oh, Ashiya, Sano won't get here until later this week." he said.

"Huh? Why?" Mizuki asked, confused.

"Didn't he tell you? He has to stay in Japan for a couple more days to finish his training." Nakatsu replied. "But don't worry, I'll be here to keep you company until he gets here!" he added, seeing the sad face on his friend.

"Oh, thanks, Nakatsu." Mizuki tried to mustered up a smile.

Mizuki followed Julia and Nakatsu as they walked along the boardwalk. Nakatsu was having the time of his life as Julia showed him the things the shops had for sale. A pang of sadness hit Mizuki as she watched her two friends laugh and tease each other. They were having so much fun together, it was obvious she was like a third wheel to their party.

"Hey, Julia, Nakatsu." she started. "I'm gonna go check out some other shops."

"We'll come with you." Julia offered.

"No, it's okay." Mizuki put on a grin. "You have fun with Nakatsu, I'll only be a little while."

"Alright," Julia agreed hesitantly. "But call me on my cell if you need me."

"Sure." Mizuki nodded.

"Oh! And be careful!" Julia called as Mizuki started walking. "There's been reports of some strange person following people around on the boardwalk!"

"I'll be fine! Have fun!" Mizuki called back with a wave.

After leaving Julia and Nakatsu, Mizuki aimlessly wandered up and down the boardwalk. She hardly took any notice to the other people passing her. Her only thoughts were of Sano. She had looked forward to seeing him all summer and now he wasn't here. Its not like he's not coming at all, Mizuki thought. Nakatsu said he'd be here in a few days, so your just going to have to wait. But I really wanted to see him today, another part of her pouted. Lost in her thoughts, Mizuki failed to notice the person in front of her.

"Ow!" she cried as she felt herself walking into something solid. "Sorry!" she apologized when she realized it was a person.

The person, a man, it looked like was dressed in a deep blue shirt and cargo shorts. A baseball cap covered most of his face. The man said nothing as he pulled the cap lower and brushed past the girl.

Shrugging, Mizuki continued on her way. However, the girl now had the feeling that someone was watching her. Every once in a while she'd look back a see the man in the cap standing several feet away. Was he following her? No, he couldn't be. Mizuki shook her head, trying to get rid of the paranoia. Despite her reassurance, the girl still couldn't shake off the feeling.

"Be careful! There's been reports of some strange person following people around..." Julia's warning rang through her head.

Heart racing, Mizuki tried to remember the tips for Stranger Danger she had been taught in elementary school. If you think you are being followed, go somewhere where there are people, the lesson ran through her mind. Go somewhere where there are people, Mizuki's eyes spotted a bookstore where a family was entering into. Quickening her steps, the girl hurried over to the store. A bell chimed, making Mizuki jump as she entered the bookstore.

"Hi, welcome to the Treasure Trove." the smiling cashier at the counter greeted Mizuki.

Smiling, Mizuki made her way through the aisles pretending to browse through the wide selection of literature. All around her, she could hear vacationers talking. Two kids were arguing further down the aisle as she stopped to read the summary of the book she was holding. After several minutes, Mizuki cautiously looked around her. The feeling of paranoia was gone. Letting out a sigh of relief, Mizuki looked at her watch. It was a quarter until two. Suddenly, the girl's stomach let out a growl. Blushing, Mizuki figured she had better get something to eat. Gently replacing the book back on its shelf, the girl walked out the door.

Outside, the sun had shifted and was blazing relentlessly on the people as they browsed among the shops and stalls. Wandering along the boardwalk, Mizuki passed by several cafes. The delicious smell of food made her even more hungry. However, due to the heat, Mizuki didn't feel like eating anything hot.

"Mommy, I want some ice cream!" Mizuki heard a little boy cry to his mother several feet away.

Mizuki watched as they boy's mother handed him a cone, filled with several scoops of ice cream. Ice cream, Mizuki thought, her mouth watering. Without another thought, she walked toward the ice cream stand and got in line. In line, Mizuki scanned the menu of flavors, each sounded so good. Should I get regular chocolate or chocolate and vanilla swirl, she asked herself. Oh, but mint chocolate chip sounds so good too and there's cookies and cream! But chocolate and vanilla swirl are mine and Sano's favorite. Sano... Gah! How do you get from ice cream to Sano? Alright, concentrate, Mizuki! Which one to get?

Deep in thought, Mizuki failed to notice the person that got behind her in line. Finally, Mizuki reached the front of the line as the family that had been in front of her flashed her a polite smile and left.

"Hi, what can I get you?" the employee behind the counter asked.

"Um... I want a chocolate and vanilla swirl, please." Mizuki decided, going for the two simple, yet classic flavors.

"That'll be three dollars and fifty cents." the cashier nodded as he handed the order to his co-worker.

Mizuki reached into her purse for her wallet, when an arm came around her and slid a twenty dollar bill onto the counter.

"I've got it." someone said behind her. "And add another chocolate vanilla swirl to the order, please."

Jumping, Mizuki turned around to find herself face to face with the man she had bumped into earlier. His cap was still pulled down low, so, it hid his face.

"N-no, its okay... y-you don't have to..." Mizuki stammered, unsure of what to do.

Her heart raced rapidly as Mizuki tried to figure out why some stranger would want to pay for her order. Strange person following people around, the feeling of paranoia slowly crept back.The employee behind the counter hovered over the twenty dollar bill, not knowing whether to take the money or to wait for the girl to pay him.

"No, I insist." the man said, a hint of amusement in his voice. "I'm paying for the lady." he said to the cashier.

Shrugging, the cashier took the money and opened the register, counting the change out on the stranger's outstretched hands and then gave him the two ice creams. Tucking the bills into his pocket, the man handed one of the ice cream cones to Mizuki.

"T-thanks..." Mizuki stammered, wondering if she should really eat the ice cream. Her parents had always taught her not to take things from strangers. "Um... if you don't mind me asking, who are you?"

"Izumi Sano." the man took off the cap that concealed the upper part of his face.

Mizuki dropped the ice cream cone in her hands as she stared at her crush. His dark hair was flattened from wearing the cap, but his warm dark colored eyes twinkled with amusement, while his mouth was curved up in a broad smile.

"SANO!" Mizuki cried happily as she ran to hug him.

Chuckling, Sano managed to open up his arms in time to catch the girl in an embrace. Wrapping his arms around her waist, he lifted her off the ground and buried his nose in her hair. It was good to see her again. Setting her back on the ground, Mizuki grinned, her cheeks flushing.

"Nakatsu said you wouldn't be here for another couple of days." Mizuki said.

"Never... listen to Nakatsu." Sano teased ruffling her hair as he pulled her back into his arms. "Now about the ice cream..."

Blushing, Mzuki realized that in her excitement, she had dropped her ice cream onto the gound. Sano's own uneaten cone was melting in a puddle beside hers as well. Turning back to face a somewhat confused worker from the ice cream stand, Sano and Mizuki smiled.

"Two chocolate and vanilla swirls, please."

YAY! EST FINISHED! I hopes you liked it! I want ice cream now...-angst- doesn't this fic make you want to get ice cream? Lol anyway... before you all go running to your freezers for ice cream (or the store in my case) leave me some reviews (notice reviews is in bold XP)! Pleeeease? XD

p.s. Do you think I should change the title? Or leave it? C'mon people! I need opinions! XD o and uh... any mistakes that i missed? feel free to point them out and i'll go fix them. I'm pretty sure there are a few in there... or more than that -sweatdrop-