CHAPTER 3—Mizore's POV

Kurumu probably hated me by now. She'd been staring at me a lot. She must know how I feel. Ever since the kiss, I knew that Tsukune just wasn't right for me…

No, that's a lie. It took me a while to finally understand that these feelings I was starting to have for Kurumu were more than just friendship. Then when Kurumu tripped and landed on top of me—it just felt so good! But I couldn't tell her. If she didn't like me back it would ruin our whole friendship.

Images flashed through my head. First I saw myself, hands on Kurumu's shoulders explaining that I loved her. Then I saw Kurumu shoving me away. Lastly I saw myself on the floor in tears. I couldn't let that happen. Then another image flashed through my head—Kurumu and I sitting on a bench holding hands and laughing. I'd be so happy. I felt myself trying to suppress tears, but the thought of us together was tantalizing me. I fell to a heap in tears, knowing that the risk of her rejecting me was to great for me to try.

I was so distracted by my thoughts that I didn't look up from my feet until Gin kicked me lightly.

"Yo," he started, "You like Kurumu right? Want me to talk to her for you?"

I snarled at him. "I've seen you 'talk' to Kurumu. Don't even try it!" I kicked his shin and he growled at me, clutching his leg. "You'll regret this!" He spat.

I trudged off to my next class.

***************

The next day Kurumu kept shooting me angry glances. Did Gin go ahead and talk to her? How could he? I wanted to rip his throat out. Lately he'd been acting like such a grimy pervert! Sort of like the slug guy that Kurumu fought before I came to Youkai! She probably thought that I was a lesbian freak. When homeroom was let out, I skidded in front of her. She tried to push me away but I wouldn't let her.

"Kurumu, did Gin talk to you?" I asked, cornering her,

"Yes, he did tell me all those nasty things you said about me."

"I didn't say anything about you except that I love you!"

"Yeah, right. As I've been informed, the moment Gin told you I liked you, you called me a no-good-lesbian-fag, and a failure of a succubus!"

"Kurumu…you…like me back?" I asked, suddenly feeling elated. "Don't you understand? He tricked you! He asked me if I liked you and then offered to talk to you for me. I thought he'd mess up so I didn't let him. Then to get revenge he said all those terrible things!"

"Nice try," she snorted. I felt my heart sink. Just when I finally knew she liked me back, she didn't believe that I liked her. So, there was only one thing to do. As she started to run off, I took her face in my hands and kissed her.

I tried to imitate what she'd done at the flower offering, but since she didn't pull away (which filled me with relief) I let her take the lead. I had to remind myself to keep breathing through my nose. We stood there for minutes, and when Gin walked by we both flipped him off. We felt so perfect.

Little did we know that things were about to get a lot worse.