Summary: When seen from afar, hesitating to tell his feelings, Natsume doesn't seem like a very bad person at all. Not exactly an N/M one-shot ;)

A/N: The starting may prove to be confusing, but I'll give you two hints. This is in someone's POV, and that someone mentioned his/her own name. You can scroll lower to see who it is; clues come in large quantities, but you might ruin the suspense!

Hesitation by Sinshana

It always seemed like he was a cold person. His dark aura and harsh attitude was enough to even scare the soul out of emotionless students like Hotaru Imai, even though she doesn't admit it. She never admitted much anyway.

But it was true. He was frightening. But the person he had tried scaring the most never shied away from his presence. Her name was Mikan Sakura. And the fact that she wasn't scared of him, that she cared about him even when she openly showed her dislike when he annoyed her, made Natsume Hyuuga fall in love, for the first time, everyone guessed.

He just never showed it.

Opposites attract. That is one of the most common knowledge known by nearly everyone part of the human race. Mikan Sakura and Natsume Hyuuga were one of the most common couples you are likely to come across, though they aren't together as of yet. They will be, soon. In fact, that is just one of the most common dramas you are ever to come across. Why is it that the one suffering from Mikan's love is Natsume's best friend? Why does he have to suffer the fact that they love each other and he has no hope at all?

Especially since his rival is his best friend?

If he doesn't suffer from the hurt of being heartbroken, he suffers of losing his friendship. It is a terrible battle wherein many suffer of misery for a very long time, and if he permits himself to, forever.

It's hard to break away, so some just give up, causing them to wallow even harder in the sadness they could have prevented, had they gone through the difficulties of forgetting.

But they hesitated. And gave in immediately.

Ruka and Hotaru. Hotaru and Ruka. Freaky that, to some people, it sounds good. Again, opposites attract. But in a certain person's opinion, it doesn't. And that is because they never showed a liking to each other. Mikan and Natsume did, but not this certain pair. This pair never liked each other. They liked different people.

But then, you ask, who does Hotaru Imai like?

This she will never tell. Like Natsume, she refuses to ever tell her loved one how she feels. But why is that? Why must cold people stay as they are, even when others, even loved ones, try to unveil them? Some even conclude that they have a reason. But what reason is that?

It is for the own good of the person they love.

Yes, that's right. They believe that their feelings revealed will do badly to their loved one or to others around them. They usually have a deep, dark secret to hide. They also believe that being with that person will affect that certain person's happiness.

Cold people do this due to their selfishness or extreme altruism.

Ahhh. Soft, cool grass feels good to the rear, especially when wearing short bottom clothing. I look up and find how serene the pink blossoms are. It is unlike me, but I chose this opportunity to skip class. I'm starting to feel glad that I did not give in to hesitation earlier. This grass feels incredibly good…

…especially for a broken heart.

Scrump. Scrimp. Without even looking up from my gaze at the red cloth on my lap, I know at once that the familiar sound is the sound of boots trudging through grass. I know, because I've stayed a country girl for some time, and that place was my home. Places where children trudge through grass, climb up trees, and drop their faces into pies, mud and watermelon.

I like watermelon. My best friend feels the same way, I believe. It is a most refreshing fruit.

"What are you doing here?"

I haven't known him long, but attentiveness was always something I've been good at. Most especially in people I'm interested in. And when I heard the boyish voice of the messy-haired boy whose shadow he cast over my sitting position, head bowed low, I thought I could hear my heart beating. Most assuredly, this does not happen a lot. Always slow, the beats keeping me alive.

Or is it because of the close contact between my chest and chin?

It does not matter.

"It does not matter."

Who said that this pale girl with strikingly-colored eyes never spoke what was on her mind?

Without a word, hands in pockets, Natsume Hyuuga made the crunchy sounds of grass once again, and a few seconds of silence later, I heard a familiar country creak that told me he had rested himself on the branch above my head.

Who knows how that boy ever gets up?

Possibilities filled my head. Being the skilled one, he might have just hopped on to it. Right?

Why am I asking myself questions?

Because I want to know.

I want to know about the boy who had just spoken to me for the first time.

And he is above my head.


…Perhaps, because of a twist of my fortune, I had chosen Natsume Hyuuga's exact favorite tree. I was accustomed to the fact that he usually sat on the ground on the other side of it, but for some reason, he chose to be above. Did he favor the atmosphere up there? Did he want to examine his surroundings at a certain angle? Was he watching me?

My head cranked up but I stopped myself when my eyes faced what was before me. I must not pursue excessive curiosity. I mustn't cause things to become awkward and make him leave me. What if he wasn't looking at me at all, and sensed me staring at him? I mustn't... I mustn't… I mustn't…

My amethyst eyes met his dark ruby ones.

I wondered if my pale cheeks colored, because a clear reaction was expressed in his eyes. Because of the unusual color in his eyes, I was unable to see if my reflection held the same redness I might have had. Reaching up to touch my cheeks would have given away my vulnerability.

But, luckily, the first movement made was Natsume's. He shut his eyes, my reflection disappearing in a flash. He closed the reading material he nearly always carried around shut, and disappeared into the clump of blossoming petals.

And disappeared.

For only a second. The next thing I knew, he had hopped in front of me, hands in pockets. We stared at each other for a long while. I wondered if he was trying to read my mind through my eyes, as I was doing him. But I failed. His eyes were unreadable. And mine were most probably, too.

I made the second move. Standing up, I dusted my skirt ever so lightly and stared at him. He opened his mouth ever so slightly, then hesitated. I waited. He then turned around and walked away.

Hesitation gets in the way.


That was our last meeting. I still struggle to look at him without really looking like it, efforts paying off. Except maybe to Natsume. I don't know. It can get frustrating, and only then had I realized how much I had tortured Mikan this way. But right now, it is not me holding the gun, or the glare at Mikan.

It is Natsume.

I stood in the alleyway, ignoring trash bins who give me peculiar looks. I stared at the couple standing with the wind blowing through their hair. With one of the useful contraptions I was able to create, I could hear their conversation very clearly. Seeing them was no problem either, with large, round-rimmed glasses latched on to my head. I didn't feel like going for animalistic telescopes this time.

This situation was somber.

It was Natsume's confession to Mikan.

When seen from afar, hesitating to tell his feelings, he does not seem like a very bad person at all.

I am here to help Mikan. To support their couple. To suffer like Ruka, who is behind the tree behind Mikan right now. But Natsume gives her a mixed sentence, then walks off swiftly in my direction. He passes by me. I am unrecognizable with things latched on to my head and a wig over my hair. I look at him, and he looks back with eyes full of sadness. He gives me a desperate look, like he might grab my hand and do what he desired right there. But Mikan's voice echoed through the tense air, and he hesitated, then ran pell-mell in the other direction.

I might have run after him, my heart about to pour. But I hesitated. And stayed right where I was.

Hesitation ruins everything. And I, Hotaru Imai, will never give in to it again.