I'm back! (…Finally. For those who hadn't noticed, I stopped reading/writing fanfics for some time.) Sorry, to all those who I have kept waiting. (It's been so long since I last updated, you might want to recap before reading this final chapter/epilogue/whatever.)
Wow. It's been an amazing ride. Thank you to all those readers for sticking around and supporting me from the start till the very end. I heart you guys.
This final chapter is dedicated to K: My very own Mai, Chie and Shizuru - all in one.
I simply adore you.
Without any further ado, I present you the final chapter of "Go home, Natsuki"
(Oops, before I forget. This chapter is 'slightly' p0rn-ish towards the end. If you're underage, close your eyes children.)
Go home, Natsuki
Love comes like sunshine after rain
Natsuki held Shizuru's hand in her own and stared up into the sky in awe. She was now able to fully enjoy the 'other' side of love - There were birds singing, butterflies fluttering around her head and the sun was no longer hidden behind grey clouds in her sky; it was out and shining brightly down on her. Feeling slightly baffled, she grinned to herself. Woah.
After months of forcing her self to believe that this sort of love didn't exist - she finally got her taste of it.
That gut wrenching experience of love Natsuki had endured not-so-long ago was something many people have had to live through.
It was one-sided love. And painful it was.
But that was all history now. All those memories of excruciatingly painful nights she had spent trying to tape her broken heart back together, evaporated instantly.
It was all history the minute she kissed Shizuru's lips.
I'm in love...
Natsuki felt Shizuru's hand squeeze her own gently.
All of a sudden the blood flowing in her body rushed to her head; she felt alert and pumped with adrenaline. She turned around to face Shizuru and managed to smile naturally.
Despite looking ill and tired, her smile could still make Shizuru's heart skip a beat or two. Shizuru couldn't help but return the smile with one of her own for the girl who swept her off her feet.
Shizuru had never found a moment in her life were she was 100 percent sure of what she wanted. But right now in this precise moment, she knew exactly what she wanted the second Natsuki smiled at her.
She smiled coyly, and voiced the whispers of her heart to Natsuki. The words slipped from her mouth without much thought; she was speaking in the language of her heart.
Natsuki wasn't able to catch the words over the sounds of the exploding fireworks. Her eyebrows creased in confusion and her eyes narrowed slightly at Shizuru's lips. She focused all her attention on Shizuru's lips.
"Huh?" She mumbled to herself as Shizuru mouthed the same words again.
She didn't notice Shizuru slowly moving closer to her. "I said, kiss me." She whispered against Natsuki's lips. Amongst all loud explosions in the sky at last Natsuki was able to hear Shizuru's voice.
A small smile tugged at her lips as Shizuru's soft lips nudged against her own. She cupped Shizuru's cheek and pressed her cold lips against Shizuru's warm lips.
Soon her cold lips weren't so cold anymore.
Stay close to me,
For I cannot survive without you.
They sat by the bonfire, huddled up together in a little bundle. A comfortable silence lingered in the air surrounding the two of them. Shizuru let her head rest on Natsuki's shoulder, as Natsuki stroked the lines on the palm of her hands. She watched Natsuki with interest as the latter played with her hands, "What are you thinking about?"
Natsuki drew in a long shaky lungful of air in. "You," she replied honestly.
Shizuru couldn't control the blush rising to her cheeks, it was an involuntary reaction to Natsuki's straight forward answer.
"What now? I mean, what do we do now?" Natsuki asked quietly, it was obvious that she had been thinking over everything that just happened. It was all too good to be real. She sighed and shook her head to herself, "Shizuru - what do you want now?"
"I... want this." She pulled Natsuki's hands to her heart and held it over her chest. "Forever."
To any other stranger it would not have made much sense what Shizuru had just gestured.
But to Natsuki, everything was crystal clear.
She stared hard into Shizuru's ruby eyes, her intense gaze sent shivers down Shizuru's spine.
But she didn't break eye contact.
I will always treasure the view that fills your eyes.
Natsuki grinned roguishly at Mai. She really couldn't help it… Her joy was something she couldn't contain.
Mai stared at Natsuki's face in disbelief, standing a couple of feet away she could sense the warm aura radiating off Natsuki.
She had to resist the urge to jump on Natsuki and start crying. Welcome back, old friend.
"H-hey." Natsuki muttered, her face was burning red. She thanked God Shizuru had left her to go and say goodbye to her other friends before the carnival ended.
Mai silently wrapped her arms around Natsuki's torso and hugged her. She felt a sudden rush emotions wash over her.
"I-I've missed you" Mai mumbled into Natsuki's shirt. "What? I've only been away for an hour or two." Natsuki chuckled.
Mai giggled as she poked Natsuki on her shoulder, "You know what I mean."
Natsuki nodded to herself and smiled sadly, "Ye-eah."
"You're going to be fine, now. Aren't you?"
"Yeah, I will. Don't worry about me anymore. I'm on the road to recovery now."
"Thank god." Natsuki felt Mai's tears soak the front of her shirt.
She could see her own vision turn blurry from tears, "Thank you Mai, for everything."
Mai clenched onto Natsuki's shirt even tighter, and cried in joy. "I don't deserve that." She stuttered.
"Yes you do. You deserve way more than just a 'Thank you'. I'll make it up to you. I swear..." Natsuki took a second to pause and gather up her thoughts. "...Knowing that you and Chie have always been there for me stopped me from falling. You guys were always just there."
Like an infant,
I take one step forward.
And like a mother,
You stand behind me.
With your arms open wide,
Waiting to catch me,
If I fall.
You've saved me from myself.
Chie twirled Aoi in her arms and inhaled her scent. The sweet fragrance of wild berries took over all of her senses. (1)
She closed her eyes and pulled Aoi's body closer to her own; together their bodies swayed along in sync with each other. "I'm going to miss taking classes with you." Aoi mumbled into Chie's neck.
Chie grinned as she turned her head to the right to kiss Aoi's temple, "I'll only be a few blocks away on the other side of campus, trust me - you won't miss me much."
Aoi swatted Chie's shoulder and pouted, "You don't know that. If I said I'll miss you, then you should believe it!"
She laughed warmly and kissed Aoi once again on her forehead, "Ok ma'am I believe you. No more arguments."
"H-hey is that Natsuki and Shizuru?" Aoi pulled out of Chie's embrace and pointed a pair of girls walking hand in hand.
Chie watched Natsuki walking side by side with Shizuru. A secretive smile was etched on both their faces. What surprised her most was that they were both holding each others hands like it was the most normal thing to do. "Yeah, it is..." She said quietly to herself. It really had been long time since she last saw Natsuki genuinely happy.
A heavy burden was lifted off Chie's shoulders when she caught the pure look of joy on Natsuki's face.
And automatically a wide grin split across Chie's face.
You've done it Natsuki...
You've really done it!
Well done, my friend.
Shizuru traced the dark shadows underneath Natsuki's eyes. She could see all those sleepless nights in Natsuki's sparkling emerald eyes.
"Did I do this to you?" She asked quietly, she felt remorse for unintentionally inflicting pain on Natsuki. She looked away in shame and stared down at the floor.
She always knew Natsuki was suffering in silence – anyone could guess that. All those hours she had spent with Natsuki trying to help her was a waste after all.
Since all along she was cause behind it all.
Natsuki jumped up, suddenly alarmed by Shizuru's change of mood. "No! Of course not. I did this to myself. I didn't know how to deal with everything that was happening to me. It was all alien to me…"
Shizuru nodded to herself, "But, was it not me who was behind all this grief?"
Natsuki frowned, "You had no idea. And whatever it was that was happening to me shouldn't have been of your concern. So it's not your fault! And don't you ever think that ever again."
Even though her voice came out in a stern, harsh whisper her face held a soft expression which could only be identified as caring. "Anyway, loosing a couple hours of sleep was hardly life threatening for me. I've been through so much more."
Shizuru's ruby eyes welled up with tears as Natsuki cupped her chin and kissed her lovingly.
"I love you." She confessed. Her heart was beating furiously in her chest as she waited for Natsuki's response.
"I love you more." Natsuki whispered in return onto Shizuru's lips.
Shizuru wasn't given the chance to argue back when Natsuki pulled her into a fierce embrace. She felt Natsuki's hands slide up her back, up past her neck and onto her ears.
Suddenly, one of her senses was cut off. She couldn't hear the crackling bonfire nor the exploding fireworks. All she could hear was distinct muffled noises merged together; it felt like she was under water.
Inquiringly she stared up into Natsuki's glassy emerald eyes; soon she couldn't feel the warmth of Natsuki's body, as Natsuki pulled out of the tight hug.
Another one of her senses cut off.
They stood apart from each other, silently watching each others faces. Shizuru couldn't be more confused than she was right now.
And then, Natsuki moved in to kiss Shizuru's lips slowly with care.
With two of her senses cut off, the intensity of Natsuki's kiss multiplied.
She felt like she was being taken to heaven.
"I'll see you again, won't I?" Natsuki asked her shyly. She stared down at her feet as she waited for Shizuru's response.
"Of course." Shizuru's reply came out more quietly than anticipated.
Overcome with nervousness, they both stared down at the floor like two little shy schoolgirls.
"Take care, Natsuki." Shizuru slightly leaned up on her toes to kiss the surprised Natsuki on her cheeks.
She had already escaped from Natsuki's line of view by the time the latter had snapped out of her hypnotized daze. "Wha..." Natsuki paused to blink a few times. She groaned to herself as she caught the brunette glide out of the park amongst the loud chatting crowd of teenagers. She drew in a shaky breath of air, "Bye..."
Shizuru grinned to herself as she got into the mini cab with her friend. The look on Natsuki's face after she had kissed her on her cheeks was priceless.
At the very same time on impulse, they both placed their hands on their chests and felt their hearts hammering against their ribcage.
Shizuru blushed as she quickly pulled her hand away from her chest. She bit her bottom lip with her teeth as she stared out of the window in an attempt to hide her blushing face from her friend.
Natsuki grinned to herself as she slowly pushed her hands back into her pockets, she strolled through the park at a leisurely pace, taking her time to absorb everything.
My heart is attached to your heart,
My aorta is wrapped around yours.
And every time your heart beats,
So does mine.
Lonely, angry, sad, depressed, belongs to a broken home, has abusive parents or is an attention seeker.
Shizuru could detect the problems behind all the tough delinquents after a single, brief encounter with them.
But, she - Natsuki Kuga - was different. She sat in front of Shizuru's desk like she had nothing to hide.
She sat with her knees bent and her arms crossed across her chest. She did not look smug, nor unhappy. Her expression was extremely difficult to read.
A small part of Shizuru knew - there and then, that this young girl could turn her world around.
She didn't know how or why. She just knew.
'Something's are just beyond understanding.
These things are better just left unexplained.'
Shizuru sat under the tree with a book in her hands, pretending to be concentrating on the short novel.
Her eyes scanned the same page over and over again. She wondered to herself, if the pair of eyes that had been watching her for the past 10 minutes had noticed that she hadn't turned the page once? She flicked page over and stared down at the writing. She needed to make this act look convincing.
She didn't feel the need to look up and check if that person was still watching her or not. She could feel those green eyes watching her... It was almost like a sixth sense.
What was weird, was that whenever Natsuki stared at her (like how she was doing right now) it would always make her feel... All hot and bothered?
She couldn't help but wonder why those emerald eyes in particular made her feel more aware and self-conscious? She thought had gotten the hang of people staring at her from all different angles...
Natsuki is different, Shizuru thinks to herself.
She rises her head up and stares back at Natsuki. They stare each other for less than two seconds before Reito comes along and breaks their eye contact.
He stares at Shizuru inquiringly and then the corners of his lips curl up, "What's going on?"
He knows very well what is going on. What Shizuru doesn't know, is that his question is a rhetorical one.
Shizuru can feel the bile rising up her throat when she looks down at her hands, all she can see is fresh blood covering her hands.
The strong smell of copper swirls up through her nostrils; she has to choke down the bile or else she'll be throwing up in the middle of the school's hallway.
Her head starts to feel light, and her vision starts to sway. She's going to topple over any second, and she knows it. There's screaming and shouting going on around her, but all of it sounds muffled to Shizuru.
It's almost like she's going to loose consciousness.
And then, suddenly cool fingers press against her face. Someone is cupping her cheek and tilting her head up.
Her hazy mind starts to clear away, everything sharpens back into focus.
She stares into clear forest green eyes; suddenly she's lost the ability to speak. Natsuki?
Now her forehead is pressed against Natsuki's - she can't believe this is happening.
She can tell Natsuki is trying her best to keep her from fainting. A sense of gratitude washes over Shizuru, she wishes she could thank Natsuki right now. But she can't, her words aren't coming out properly. Instead nonsense is slipping out from her mouth.
So much is happening, she can't grasp on to it all, and all of a sudden Natsuki's scent is wafting through her nose. It's a clean smell; like a breath of fresh air. She can't get enough of her scent. It's addictive.
She feels slightly intoxicated, she wonders if it's the nauseating blood that's doing this to her? Or Natsuki's scent?
Something tells her that it's Natsuki's scent that is making her feel drunk as she presses her nose against Natsuki's neck.
She grins lazily against Natsuki's neck when she feels Natsuki jump up and yelp when the tip of her nose brushes her skin. Her eyelids start to feel heavy when Natsuki speaks to her in a frantic tone. "Shi-Shizuru? Shizuru don't faint on me now, we're almost there."
Ah. Sleep seems to be overtaking her body and mind now. She wishes she could thank Natsuki before she doses off.
Before her eyes shut, she buries her head further into Natsuki's neck and subtly kisses her there, under her ear. She smiles secretly to herself and drifts off asleep.
Thank you, Natsuki.
Shizuru doesn't stop once to attempt to try and figure out her thoughts and feelings. Instead she makes herself so busy, that she doesn't have time to even think.
She can't grasp onto everything that is happening to her.
All these strange thoughts, feelings and emotions?
She blames it all on her hormones and that 'time of the month'. But she knows very well that it is more than just that.
Something is happening to her. She's changing little by little.
Is this what she had predicted? Is this how she thought Natsuki would turn her world around? No, it can't be?
Shizuru suddenly realizes that she's thinking too much again. She picks up her textbook and starts reading to keep her mind off Natsuki.
What have you done to me?
Reito's words shatters Shizuru's mind like glass dropping from the sky. "How can you not notice that Kuga-san is head over heels in-love with you?" He lets go of Shizuru's body and takes a step away from her. He knows her well enough to be sure that she'll do the right thing once she's left alone, so he leaves without offering her any advice.
This is something she needs to deal with on her own.
As Reito leaves Shizuru's sight, her knees start to feel weak and unstable. If anyone touches her now she'll topple over.
She turns around slowly. Thousands of questions have plagued her mind. She can't think straight. This is all too much to swallow down.
And then she finds herself face to face with Natsuki.
They're meters apart, but it feels like there's half a mile between the two of them.
The look in Natsuki's soft eyes makes Shizuru finally understand. Everything makes so much sense now.
A dozen of memories flash past her eyes.
Natsuki watching her sleep, Natsuki offering her umbrella, Natsuki giving her a lift home, Natsuki taking care of her, Natsuki suddenly avoiding her, Natsuki having random mood swings, Natsuki creating distance between the two of them, Natsuki confessing that she sought the attention of only one person…
Oh! They clues Natsuki unintentionally left out were like huge signs hanging above her head. And yet, Shizuru was still blind to them all. She was far too wrapped up in her own world to have noticed something like this.
Shizuru feels her world slowly sharpen back into focus.
Natsuki stares back at Shizuru, her lean body is stiff and tense with worry. Shizuru can now see an imaginary neon sign hanging above Natsuki's head.
The sign reads: 'I'm helplessly in love with you!' And every time Natsuki's heart beats the neon lights flicker.
Shizuru looses her train of thoughts the second Natsuki's lips nudge against her own. Natsuki's hands slide down her back and their lips brush against each others again.
This is her first kiss. This is their first kiss.
Shizuru knows that everything will be different from now on. She's glad she won't feel ever so lonely anymore.
They pull apart from their first kiss and silently stare at each other. A shaky hand reaches up for Shizuru's fringe and brushes the hair away from Shizuru's eyes.
It's a small gesture; easy to miss. Most people would not even notice it, let alone understand it.
Luckily, Shizuru understands Natsuki's secret message.
'I love you too', her heart whispers back. (2)
Natsuki stared up at her ceiling. A small smile crept up on her lips. She felt good for a change.
It had been exactly 7 days and 6 hours since the day of the carnival.
She spent every moment (since the carnival) thinking of Shizuru. Similar to what she was during the last 2 years - the only difference now was that whenever she would think of Shizuru it wouldn't include any painful, gut wrenching side effects.
She let out a slow shuddering breath of air.
Despite being the happiest person on the earth, she felt oddly uncomfortable. To be honest, she didn't know what to do now. Call Shizuru? Ask her out on a date? What was the purpose of dating? Would a date be necessary now? Hadn't they expressed their feelings for each other? Was it time for them to move onto the next level? Would that be going to fast? Shouldn't their first step be something along the lines of spending more time with each other?
Uncertainty clouded Natsuki's mind. She suddenly realized how inexperienced (and uneducated) she was in this area.
There was only one thing she could do now at a time like this... Without thinking twice, she picked up her mobile phone and dialed a familiar number
"Hello?" A soft voice replied on the other side of the line. Natsuki gulped nervously.
"Hey, Mai… I need your help."
Natsuki stood outside Shizuru's home. They were just about to bid each other farewell.
"I-uh-had fun." Natsuki spoke sheepishly as she rubbed the back of her neck - not knowing what to do with her hands.
"So did I." Shizuru replied softly.
Their first date wasn't smooth like they hoped it would be. In the eyes of a stranger, their date would have been identified as 'Epic fail' or 'Lost case'. However, just being together was enough for the both of them.
"It's just a night out at the movies with Shizuru. How wrong can it go?" Mai tried to calm down Natsuki.
Wheezing in and out of the paper bag Natsuki closed her eyes and imagined all sorts of hideous accidents that could happen. A few moments later she raised her head up and out of the paper bag, she stared up at Mai with quivering puppy dog eyes, "I can't do it Mai."
Mai sat down on the floor next to Natsuki, "Let's let's think this situation through. Imagine this: you are going to go watch a movie. You are just going with a friend."
Natsuki nodded slowly, the paper bag dropped out of her hands. "That's it?" She asked simply.
"Yes, that's it. You are going to the movies with a friend" Mai sighed in relief and patted Natsuki's back. "Don't worry. You can do this."
Natsuki took a small step closer to Shizuru and paused. She wanted to mentally punch herself for not getting any advice on the hardest part of the date.
Shizuru bravely took the lead. She stepped up to Natsuki and quickly (yet casually) kissed Natsuki on the lips. It last for a brief second. But it wasn't enough. She wanted more. Another kiss. This time she lingered on Natsuki's lips for a little longer.
And another kiss. And another. And another.
Until they were both merged in one long sweet kiss.
Natsuki's hands slid down from Shizuru's neck all the way down to her waist. Whilst doing this her hands innocently grazed the sides of Shizuru's breasts.
They both froze.
Natsuki clenched her eyes shut and waited for Shizuru to slap her away.
Shizuru on the other hand was marveling over the fact that it was Natsuki -the shy introverted school delinquent- who had just touched her that way.
They slowly peeled off each other. Both girls blushing furiously.
"I-I'm sorry I didn't mean to touch your- I mean I didn't to touch you there." Natsuki stammered.
Shizuru giggled under her breath, "Goodnight Natsuki." She turned away from the darker haired teen and walked back into her home.
"See you." Natsuki replied to Shizuru's retreating figure.
Natsuki climbed up the tree swiftly, she looked down at Shizuru and grinned from ear to ear. She stood on a thick sturdy branch with her arms above her head holding onto another thick branch. "You wanted to know what I do in my free time? Well, this is what I do... But only when my bike is broken."
Shizuru smiled up at Natsuki, and walked closer to the tree. Ever since the carnival she had been learning something new every single day. Her eyes drifted from Natsuki's grinning face to her body, and she wondered to herself if Natsuki was intentionally flexing her biceps. She couldn't ponder on that thought for too long after she heard the tree creak a little bit while Natsuki was adjusted her position on the branch.
"Are you sure it's safe?" Shizuru inquired, she couldn't help but worry. She had only just got Natsuki, she didn't want to loose her any time soon... After all she was just starting to enjoy life to its fullest extent with Natsuki by her side.
"Don't worry. Watch this." Natsuki pulled her body up from the branch using her arms and swung off the tree, she landed on her feet with a soft thud. "I'm like a cat - I always land on my feet!" She thumped her chest with pride. She staggered forwards toward Shizuru, "Want to have a go?"
Shizuru watched Natsuki regain her normal composure, "Doesn't your feet hurt from jumping like that?"
"Not really, I've gotten used to it now."
Shizuru raised her eyebrows, "You make it look easier than it should be, I don't think I can do something like that."
"That should be the last of your worries. Anyone can do it, it's fairly simple… Unless… You're scared of falling?"
"A little..." Natsuki stopped in front of Shizuru, "But, what if I told you that your safety is my number one priority?"
"Well, I trust Natsuki will not let me fall." Natsuki grinned, "Do you want to have a go then? We don't have to climb that high. One step at a time, yeah?"
Shizuru nodded, and followed Natsuki to one of the shorter trees in the park. Natsuki held onto one of the lower branches and launched herself up onto the tree like a stealthy cat. She dusted herself down before she held out her free hand to Shizuru, "Here, take my hand."
Shizuru secured a leg on the ground, the other on the tree trunk and clamped both her hands on Natsuki's free hand. Natsuki swiftly pulled Shizuru up onto the branch with her, "There you go. Not bad, huh?"
Shizuru smiled and nodded. She was surprised how easy it was to get up, Natsuki made it look like she was lighter than a feather.
"We'll go higher next time" Natsuki promised her as she weaved her free around Shizuru's waist and pulled their bodies close together.
The temperature dropped significantly, but Shizuru didn't feel much of the difference under Natsuki's arms. Instead she used the nippy weather as an excuse to get closer and cuddle with Natsuki.
"Hmmph." She hummed to herself in content.
They watched the park lights flicker on as the sun disappeared from their view. A chilly gust of wind blew past their bodies, Natsuki's arms instinctively tightened around Shizuru's waist. "Are you cold?" She breathed into Shizuru's ears.
"A little bit." Shizuru replied quietly.
"Then, would you like to go home? It's warmer inside."
"I'd like that, but only if you don't leave me at the front door again."
Natsuki smiled shyly, "What'll your dad say?"
"...He doesn't have to see you come in."
A husky laugh erupted from behind Shizuru, "I'm no James Bond. I'll get caught for sure." The tree branch creaked as Shizuru turned around in their embrace, she kissed Natsuki's jaw and whispered, "You're right - you're not James Bond. You are Natsuki Kuga, my under-cover knight in shining amour."
"But-" Natsuki's voice was cut off as Shizuru swiftly placed her index finger to Natsuki's lips. She gave Natsuki a playful 'I'm-not-finished' look.
"Tonight, you'll hold me to sleep."
Natsuki gulped, "O-okay."
Natsuki sat in front the desk with her arms folded behind her head, she grinned broadly at the woman sitting on the opposite side of the desk.
"So, you've got a steady job?"
"Yes, my boss said he'll be giving me a raise if I keep working for him." She smiled fondly as she spoke about her employer.
"What about your education?"
"I'll be studying Physics for another couple of years at University. I just got acceptance letters last week." She replied with an air of confidence.
"And you'll be living where?"
"With my friends, Mai and Chie, in a 3 bedroom apartment. Rent and food isn't going to be much hassle for me."
"Looks like you're more than ready, Natsuki-chan."
"I am." She sat up straight in her chair and smiled, the woman took notice of the gleam in her emerald eyes. "Thank you for looking after me for all those years. I'll miss you..."
The woman behind the desk felt her eyes well up with tears. She stared at Natsuki's matured face in disbelief; she could hardly believe this was the young toddler she had taken in many years ago. "You'll come back to visit us, won't you?"
Natsuki nodded, "Whenever I get any free time, I'll come by."
"You know you don't have to leave right away just because you have turned 18, you can stay here for a little longer - until you're entirely ready to go out into the real world."
"I'm more than ready." Natsuki stood up and dusted down her jeans. "Once again, thank you for providing for me. I'll see you again soon."
She picked up her luggage and turned to walk out of the small office, "Goodbye".
Natsuki and Chie cycled down the deserted road with their arms stretched out in the open air. "Okay, fine you can do that. But can you do a wheelie?" Chie yelled at Natsuki as she weaved in and out around Natsuki with her bicycle.
Sometimes it feels good to just let go and mess around. And that was exactly what Chie and Natsuki were doing. They were "unwinding", in their own unique way.
Natsuki smirked at Chie as she sped up on her bike, "Watch... And learn." She smoothly tilted back on her bike and lifted the front wheel off the road, whilst doing this she steadily raised her left hand off the handle bars.
"Show off!" Chie chanted from behind her.
"What? You asked me if I could do a wheelie! I only showed you that I can do better."
"Sure, Miss Hot-shot."
"It's your turn now, can you do a bar spin?"
Chie raised her eyebrows, "I can't. Not with this bike. But I could do it with my other bike, you know."
Natsuki smirked at Chie, "All talk; no action. You do realize that you've used that 'Other bike' excuse twice already..." They both took one look at each other before they erupted in a loud hearty laughter.
"Whatever." Chie grinned sheepishly at Natsuki as she rubbed the back of her neck.
That hot, searing pain...
It doesn't hurt anymore, does it?
They kissed each other like they hadn't seen each other in years, when in reality it had only been 2 days.
Before Natsuki could even greet Shizuru, she was pulled into a rough kiss at the entrance of Shizuru's dorm room.
Shizuru kissed Natsuki's lips like she was trying to kiss away Natsuki's painful past. Guilt consumed every single nerve within her spine, whenever she was reminded of the hurt Natsuki had experienced.
Natsuki had never verbally expressed her sorrow, but the look in her tired eyes was enough to inform any stranger of the heartbreak she had previously experienced.
Natsuki felt Shizuru's kisses turn more frantic as the seconds passed. She knew Shizuru well enough to know that she felt insecure or was panicking over something. The arms wrapped around her neck tightened, effectively bringing their bodies more close to each other. Something was definitely wrong.
She knew if this continued for any longer then she would soon be loosing herself in the heat of the moment. She had to put a stop to this or else she would soon be forgetting what was making Shizuru act so... Strange?
She pried her hands off Shizuru's body and smoothly pulled out of the heated kiss.
Shizuru's eyes peeled open, her sexy crimson eyes slowly coming into Natsuki's view. Hi, there.
Natsuki had to resist Shizuru's trembling lips. "I-is there something I wrong?"
A sleek, brown eyebrow rose. "Why would Natsuki think that something is wrong?"
"I don't know, it just feels like something is off here and you're trying to ignore it..."
Shizuru leaned up on her toes and kissed Natsuki hard. She pulled out of the deep kiss before Natsuki could loose consciousness from lack of oxygen. "Does that ease your worries?" She asked, smiling brightly.
"No. But it was very distracting, I almost forgot what it was that I was worrying over a second ago."
"You worry about everything." Shizuru hugged Natsuki's lean frame and inhaled a deep lungful of her clean scent. Every time she held Natsuki like this she was reminded of that day… And consequently she was reminded of the reason why she fell in love with Natsuki. Oh it is a wonderful feeling, Shizuru thought to herself.
"Everything? I worry about only you." Natsuki replied quietly.
Oh, but Shizuru is her everything...
Chie licked the outer shell of Aoi's earlobe playfully and consequently she was rewarded with a flimsy swat over her shoulder. "Ouch." She laughed, "What was that for?"
"Chie Harada, you know very well that I don't appreciate your 'puppy kisses' in public... People are constantly giving me weird looks when I'm with you."
"That's because they can't believe you're with me!" Chie grinned smugly from ear to ear.
Aoi rolled her eyes, "Well, they better get used to it because I'm sticking with you until the day I die." She replied, slightly irritated. Chie watched Aoi ruffle a hand through her long brown locks of hair - a gesture she always made whenever she got annoyed with something.
Chie cupped Aoi's chin and kissed her softly, "You don't know half the things you do to my heart when you say things like that." Aoi felt herself being gently pushed up against the tree. Chie's hands came to rest on the tree trunk; on both sides of her face. They kissed slowly, and soon forgot all about their surroundings. Right now, it was just the two of them kissing under a tree, with no one else around.
Their lips parted slowly, and both their eyelids opened simultaneously.
"That makes me wonder..." Aoi breathed out onto Chie's lips, "What happens to your heart when I tell you I love you more than life itself."
Chie smiled nervously, she dropped one of her hands down to Aoi's and pulled it up to her chest. She pushed both their hands against her pounding chest and smiled sheepishly.
Chie carefully watched Aoi's eyes turn cloudy with tears as a small 'Oh' formed on her lips.
Shizuru covered her mouth and laughed as she watched her roommate roll around on the floor laughing hysterically.
"Are you serious?" Rin asked as she wiped the tears from her eyes. Shizuru nodded as she tried to seize her giggling fit.
"That is so cute!" Rin squealed; Shizuru nodded again in agreement with her new friend.
All of a sudden something hit their window from outside, both girls jumped up in unison. They stared at each other in horror, not moving a single muscle.
Another small pebble was pelted at their window. Rin picked up a spare hanger and slowly approached the window, Shizuru followed behind her holding a long stick in her hands.
Rin feverishly pulled the curtains apart and stared down at the pavement looking for the culprit.
Shizuru stood behind her waiting for orders from Rin. She was surprised when she heard a short chuckle coming from her room mate.
The black haired teen turned around with a smirk plastered on her face, "Speak of the little devil... Your Romeo is here."
Shizuru felt her heart flutter the second her heard the mention of her beloved. She rushed to the window without a second to spare and pulled the windows open wide.
"Natsuki!" She called out into the darkness.
"I'm here." Natsuki replied, her voice sounding huskier than ever. Shizuru felt electricity run down her body in excitement. "Are you busy?"
"No, not at all. Come in. Here, take my swipe card." Shizuru turned around to take her swipe card from Rin's outstretched hand, she carefully held out the card and dropped into Natsuki's hands.
"Thanks, I'll be up in a second."
Shizuru whirled around and stared at the state of her room, Rin caught the panicked expression on her face. "Don't worry, the room isn't in a bad state." The darker haired teen went over to her side of the room to grab her pillow and duvet.
Whilst on the other side of the room, Shizuru curiously watched Rin pick up her duvet and pillow, "What are you doing?"
"Giving you space." Rin winked at Shizuru, pleased to see a bright blush invade her pale cheeks.
"Oh, don't leave. I feel like I'm kicking you out of your own room."
"I insist on giving you two some space. Don't worry about me, I can go find refuge in Hitomi's room."
Shizuru hugged Rin, "Thank you!"
"Okay, I'm out of here. I'll see you in the morning. Goodnight."
Rin walked out of the room silently and closed the door quietly. As soon as the door was shut Shizuru rushed to her dressing table and grabbed a comb.
Before she could even give her hair a quick brush, Natsuki had already arrived at the door.
A pleasant wave of warmth rushed through her body as she approached the door. Knowing that her sweetheart stood on the other side of the door made her yank the door open as fast as she could.
"Hey." Natsuki stood to the left, casually leaning her body on the door frame.
Shizuru didn't have to think twice about her actions when she pulled Natsuki in by her collar into the dorm room. She didn't even register the thought of the quick reversed roles when Natsuki gently pushed up against the door.
This unexpected visit oddly felt like it was part of her routine.
Place your hand in mine,
And stay here forever.
Natsuki stood behind Nao and stared at the grave in front of them.
It had been three days since Nao switched off the life machine that had been supporting her fragile mother. It had been 3 days since she last said a word.
Grief had different effects on all people.
Natsuki stepped up to Nao and placed her hand on Nao's shoulder.
She had always been there for Nao since the first moment they met.
She was there when Nao switched off the life machine. She was there when Nao held her mother's wrist hoping that the steady pulse would return. She was there when Nao turned away from her dead mother and tore down the hospital ward in an angry burst.
She was there, whether Nao liked it or not.
Nao half turned her head towards Natsuki and gave Natsuki a blank stare. Natsuki simply gave her new friend a look that read, I'm here.
A lone tear leaked out from Nao's lime green eyes. Her voice came out in a croaky whisper "I-I-I" She pressed her lips together tightly and furiously wiped away her tears.
She angrily took one step away from Natsuki. Followed by another. Soon she was jogging away from the grave yard. With each stride she took her speed increased. It was like the devil was on her tail.
She was sprinting through the woods when a loud, ragged sob escaped from her throat.
It was time to let go.
Natsuki rolled over on Shizuru's bed and stared up at the ceiling. She had dozed off a couple of times; boredom had finally gotten to her.
Shizuru was sitting at her desk working hard on one of her coursework's. They both made a deal to spend the rest of the evening together after Shizuru had completed her coursework.
However, it wasn't agreed that Natsuki would wait in Shizuru's room until she was done with her coursework.
So it was a total surprise for Shizuru when Natsuki arrived at her dorm room 3 hours early.
"Got nothing else to do." Natsuki stated with a sigh as she leaned down to kiss Shizuru on her lips briefly before pulling away and proceeding to walk into her room.
Shizuru shut the door absent mindedly wondering how on earth she would get her work done with Natsuki in the room distracting her. Natsuki kicked off her shoes and flopped down onto her bed.
As her girlfriend got comfortable on her bed it suddenly occurred to her that Natsuki could work as an encouragement. The faster she'd work the more time they'd be able spend together.
Smiling to herself she pushed herself off the back of the door and walked towards Natsuki. She crawled up onto the bed and let herself be taken into Natsuki's warm embrace. "If Natsuki behaves, I might finish my work early." All of a sudden she felt herself being scooped up into Natsuki's arms. She was being carried to her desk, "I promise I'll behave." Natsuki murmured in her heated ears as she was being put down into her chair.
Natsuki leaned down and kissed her slowly. "Concentrate on your work." She pulled away from Shizuru and flopped back onto the bed.
Shizuru swayed slightly on her chair, she blinked repeatedly to snap herself out of her daze.
Natsuki caught the look on Shizuru's face, she smirked "Sorry, I won't do that again."
And that was how it started, Shizuru started to work on her coursework without wasting a second.
While Shizuru worked hard, Natsuki watched -no gawked- at her.
She couldn't help but gape at Shizuru.
She looked incredibly sexy in her square thick-rimmed glasses. Her reading glasses...
Natsuki liked them very much, though she hadn't admitted it to Shizuru yet.
"All done." Shizuru hummed joyfully as she stretched her back. She made a move to take off her glasses, but found herself stopped by Natsuki who had suddenly leaped off the bed and grabbed onto her hands. Natsuki pulled Shizuru up, off the chair. "Keep those on, just for now." She growled under her breath as she pulled Shizuru towards the bed.
They both fell back onto the bed.
Shizuru moaned in content, "Natsuki? Aren't we going out?"
"No, not until you've gotten some rest."
"But, you've been waiting all this time!"
"I can wait a little longer." She took hold of Shizuru's slender frame and pulled their bodies tightly together until Shizuru's back was firmly pressed against her front.
In the end, they didn't go out. And they were both perfectly happy with that.
Chie stared blankly at her lunch. Everyone else around her were chatting idly and eating their food.
"You're not eating your food?" Tate pointed out rather loudly.
Everyone turned around to stare at Chie. She smiled broadly, "I am, just waiting for my drink to be refilled. I'm parched." This was partly a lie – honestly, her throat was dry, but that wasn't the reason why she couldn't eat.
She couldn't eat because the school council president (also known as Shizuru Fujino, Natsuki's girlfriend the ex-school council president) was sitting next to her casually eating and chatting with everyone.
Yes, Chie was feeling nervous. After all, Shizuru was one who always caught Chie when she was up to mischief. She was the one that'd report her to the headmaster's office, she was the one who'd allocate punishments.
Aoi gave her a small kick under the table, "Cut it out, darling." She stretched the last word out, making the endearing term sound venomous. Aoi knew Chie well enough to know that she was freaking out over just sitting next to Shizuru.
Chie forced the food down her throat, "So kai -ouch- Shizuru-san" Aoi stomped on Chie's foot before the tomboy could utter the word 'Kaichou'. Unfortunately for Chie, Aoi had been wearing stiletto heels.
Her face expressed her pain, Aoi gasped.
"Chie-kun? Are you ok?" Shizuru watched her face transform from a look of sheer pain to a forced smiling face. "Chie-kun? Are you ok?"
Aoi suddenly stood up, pulling Chie up with her. She held a guilty look on her face, "Sorry Shizuru, could I borrow Chie for a short moment?"
Before Shizuru could reply Aoi yanked Chie with her towards the direction of the ladies room. Shizuru took notice of the slight limp in Chie's walk.
"Don't worry about them. They're weird like that." Natsuki leaned in from across the table and smiled reassuringly at Shizuru.
Shizuru stared at the professor blankly. She hadn't paid much attention to this lecture. Her mind was drifting from one thought to another... Course work needs to be printed out, presentation handouts need to collected, Natsuki is probably sleeping right now, Interview with the law firm tomorrow, Natsuki hasn't come to visit me in days, the Curriculum Vitae needs to be updated for the interview tomorrow, Natsuki...
Whatever it was she was thinking about, her mind would occasionally wander off back to Natsuki.
Ever since Natsuki had joined her life, her everyday life seemed so much more... More what? She couldn't quite find the word to describe it. She just knew she was content with life and everything it had to offer.
The image of Natsuki sitting by the lake with her trousers rolled up to her knees slipped into her mind in that precise moment. Summer break was fun... (3)
All of a sudden all the students surrounding Shizuru stood up one by one and left the lecture hall. It took Shizuru less than a second to snap out of her daydream, she then become aware of her surroundings. The lecture had finally come to an end and everyone was starting to make their leave.
Shizuru stood up and reached out to grab her books and notes, whilst doing this a few of her friends bid her goodbye and left. After gathering up her books and coat she made her way down the staircase to the bottom to reach the exit.
She noticed how keen everyone else was to get out of that dreadful lecture. She wasn't too surprised; the professor was known for dragging on for hours.
Upon reaching the doorway something caught her eyes. She did a double take when she found Natsuki casually standing outside in the corridor with her bike helmet in her hands.
Natsuki's emerald eyes were too busy scanning the crowd to notice a brunette sneak up to her and wrap her arms around her neck.
What a pleasant surprise..."What are you doing here?" Natsuki never failed to please Shizuru, her little surprise visits and adventures were what kept Shizuru on her toes.
"I wanted to see you." Natsuki mumbled as her lips sought Shizuru's skin. She placed a quick kiss on Shizuru's forehead and pulled away.
"Come, let's get out of here." Shizuru felt a rush of excitement shoot through her body as Natsuki took hold of her hand and pulled her through the large crowd.
Despite acting calm and relaxed, her heart was actually doing cartwheels as Natsuki guided her. She wondered to herself where Natsuki was going to take her this time.
You can take me anywhere,
As long as you're with me.
Shizuru's soft moans filled up the small dorm room. One of her hands was tangled up in Natsuki's midnight blue hair, the other was by her side tightly gripping onto the white bed sheets.
Her eyes were locked onto forest green eyes as Natsuki tenderly pushed in and out of her body.
This wasn't her first time with Natsuki, but it did remind her of the night she lost her virginity to Natsuki. She could clearly remember the way Natsuki worshipped every inch of her body. She felt her heart well up with emotions when she brought back that certain memory.
She was immediately pulled out of her thoughts when she felt Natsuki scrape her teeth against her neck, close to her jugular vein. Her body shivered in pleasure and once again another soft moan escaped from her lips. Her toes curled and uncurled against the sheets as Natsuki continued to push in and out of her body.
Natsuki's heavy breathing grew more and more ragged while Shizuru's moans grew louder as each second passed.
Shizuru could sense Natsuki's body was acting out on its own, she could feel Natsuki's body turn just a little bit more aggressive with each thrust. Her own body reacted instinctively as she pushed herself further in towards Natsuki's touch. Her back arched over and her hips lifted off the bed each time Natsuki would push deep into her body.
They were both loosing each other in the heated moment. They struggled to keep their eyes on each other as each second passed.
Shizuru let go of her grip on the bed sheets and wrapped her free hand around Natsuki's shoulder.
And then the long awaited moment arrived. Shizuru's body stretched and writhed underneath Natsuki's, her eyes clamped shut and a few tears leaked out of the corners of her eyes. "N-na-tsu-ki..."
Natsuki swept down kissed Shizuru's lips soundly. "Shizuru." She placed another wet kiss on Shizuru's cheek, at the same time she pulled herself out of Shizuru. Her fingers twitched instinctively, almost like they wanted to return back into Shizuru's warm body.
She smiled to herself as Shizuru moaned, still unable to form coherent words.
In the dark room, they both shifted their bodies to get into a comfortable position. Natsuki lay in the bed staring up at the ceiling with Shizuru draped across her bare body.
Shizuru let her body relax and laid her head down on Natsuki's chest. She listened carefully to her beating heart and smiled secretly.
You can come and stay in my heart whenever, and forever.
Because you, only you...
Hold the keys to my heart.
As the sun had began to descend, orange-pink light filtered through all the windows of the new apartment. The bright pink light bounced off all the white walls of the apartment.
Shizuru and Natsuki had spent the whole day moving furniture into the apartment. The living room was the only room left untouched. The empty room had been left last since Natsuki made intentions to ignore this room till the rest of the place was sorted out. By the time she had finished with all the other rooms her whole body was aching all over.
That was when the cream carpet in her living room floor suddenly looked ever so inviting.
Shizuru was done inspecting her new shared apartment when she walked into the empty living room. A small smile crept up onto her lips when she found Natsuki stretched out on her back; perfectly happy to be there lying on the floor of their new living room.
Wordlessly, Shizuru approached Natsuki and joined her on the floor.
They both stared up at the ceiling, watching the color of it change as the sun slowly descended. Their fingers tangled up together in a loose embrace.
The apartment was absolutely silent; Shizuru had to strain her ears to listen to Natsuki's soft breathing.
"Shizuru..." Natsuki called out to her gently. "Hmm." Shizuru rolled onto her side, and gazed at Natsuki's silhouette. "Yes?"
"What kind of animal do you see me as?" Natsuki inquired, still staring up at the ceiling. Shizuru watched Natsuki's lips carefully as she spoke.
Shizuru's eyebrows creased in confusion, "I see Natsuki as Natsuki. Not some kind of animal."
"Oh, no. I didn't mean it like that. I mean if you tried to imagine me as an animal, what kind of animal would I be?" Shizuru bit down on her bottom lip and thought about Natsuki's strange question, "Mai and Chie..." Natsuki's voice broke Shizuru's train of thoughts, "always tell me that they think of me as a 'lone wolf'. I've never really thought about it much. But, I'd like to know what you think of me."
"Lone wolf..." Shizuru whispered to herself, it certainly did suit Natsuki very well. However, it did strike her that it would have only suited the 'old' Natsuki.
This Natsuki, lying here before her eyes, is so much more to her than just a 'lone wolf'.
"No, you're not a wolf to me. You're a... Swan."
Natsuki's eyebrows rose up in genuine surprise; her face took on an amused expression. "Me. A. Swan? Are you joking?"
"I am most certainly not making light of this situation."
Natsuki's amused expression wavered, "But... Swans are beautiful creatures. They're elegant and graceful." Her hand reached up to Shizuru's face and her fingers lightly grazed Shizuru soft skin. "That's not me, Shizuru. That's... You." She offered Shizuru a small smile.
Shizuru tugged her bottom lip with her teeth in an attempt to hide her smirk. She raised herself off the floor and leaned over on top of Natsuki. She took notice of how Natsuki gulped as she slowly straddled her hips. "Why... A... Swan?" Natsuki breathed out, she could now feel her heart hammering against her rib cage.
She stared up into Shizuru's crimson eyes waiting for an answer. Her tongue flicked out and licked her dry lips unconsciously as Shizuru began to descend down to her level with a small cheeky smile tugging at her lips.
"Doesn't Natsuki know?" Shizuru's tongue flicked out and gave her moist lips a small lick, "Swans... Mate for life."
It was there.
Like a flower, it was blossoming in your heart.
You couldn't see it, you could only feel it.
You were young and naive.
You didn't know what was happening to you.
You were helpless and blinded...In love.
Yes you, Shizuru Fujino, had innocently fallen in love with Natsuki Kuga before you knew it.
And so this is where it ends.
I hope everyone enjoyed this last chapter.
After everything Natsuki went through, I think she deserved a happy ending. =]
(1) Chie and Aoi are dancing without music here. (The band played their last song a while ago if you can recall.)
(2) I wanted give a little taste of what's going on in Shizuru's head during certain scenes. Umm, some of these scenes you may recognize - some you may not.
(3) I'm trying to show that Shizuru is paying NO attention to the lecture at all. (That explains the random thoughts and all.)
For the record, most of the writing in italics (small pieces of poetry) is written by me, on some occasions some of the lines are taken from famous poets. Like E.E.C - I don't claim to own those poems.
For those who still don't understand why I titled this fiction as 'Go home, Natsuki' - It's because it can be interpreted in many ways.
Natsuki's building relationship with Shizuru could be seen as her quest to find a home or return home. It also shows the other side of their relationship, where she feels like she is being constantly dismissed/coldly rejected by Shizuru (Go home, Natsuki).
It was meant to be a reoccurring line, but I didn't use it enough. Meh.
(Sorry for the long notes, I'm just trying to minimize any confusion.) By the way, Kohei no Kimi, I hope every thing is clear for you now. Most of these footnotes are just for you. :3
I'd really, really appreciate it if you guys left a review. =]
Reviews = Love
Once again, to everyone (that includes anonymous reviewers! Wish I could reply to all your sweet comments) who have shown me support through reviewing my fic + adding it to fav/alert - Thank you!
A special thank you goes to J-Crusader - for the last 'review' you gave me, it was incredibly sweet of you. It helped me when I had a really bad case of writers block…
And lastly, another special thank you goes to Graceful Amethyst– for being such an awesome/entertaining reviewer. I think I spent at least 20 minutes laughing over your last review, and then another 10 minutes wiping away the tears. Y000h sTIll da 1 dat r4wkz my b0aTZzzz G-A! Datz r1ghT1!!! w00t W00T.!1!!11
(Waves a flag) *Semper fi* I hope you're happy with my ending. =]
Okay. So that's all, if any of you guys have questions (or just wanna talk) - please do not hesitate.
'Kay, I'm going to shut up now.
Well, until next time guys... Farewell!
- Blue Lone Wolf