DISCLAIMER: I DO NOT OWN LA CORDA D'ORO OR ANY OF ITS CHARACTERS.
Sorry!! To those of you who imagined that I had disappeared from the face of Earth... well I'm still here. Here's chapter 9.
He heard the quick intake of breath and the soft gasp that came out of her parted lips. He didn't even have to turn to know who it was. He'd recognise her voice anywhere. Slowly he turned to face her.
Both of them stood there, staring at each other for what seemed like hours, when in reality only a few minutes have passed. Kahoko was the first to break the uncomfortable silence.
"L-Len..... hi... what are you doing here?" she ventured, dread rising within her. Ryotaro would be coming to pick her up for their date, and if he sees Len.... She cringed inwardly, imagining the consequences of that event. Not good.
Her thought were interrupted as Len finally spoke up. "Kahoko, I came to see you," Len said, bluntly. His face was neutral as usual, but inside his feelings were in a turmoil.
"She's dressed up..... could it be?!" he thought with a frown.
Before Kahoko could even voice her reply, he instantly stepped forwards, thus closing the distance between them both. He looked sincerely into her eyes, took a deep breath, and spoke.
"Kahoko, I love you. I know you're with Tsuchi- Ryotaro (his lips forming his rival's name awkwardly), but I only need you to know my feelings." He paused, waiting for the words sink in. He watched her face turn from anxious to shocked and stricken. But he had to do this. In full.
He laughed bitterly. "You don't have to worry, I won't go atound stalking you. I won't sink so low. I promise you, I'll leave Japan straight away after the concert; maybe I'll go to Europe, and you never need to see me again. I won't spoil your happinesss for my own selfishness..."
Kahoko was speechless. Had Len just.... confessed to her? She was helplessly confused. What about Mitsuya Katsuhino? Wasn't Len supposed to be engaged to her? He couldn't have given up on her after just one rejection?! He's not that sort of person. But looking directly into his eyes, she began to doubt her assumptions. Those eyes –they only looked that way when he plays his violin, when he gets swept away by the music he was producing...
He walked past her, their shoulders accidentally brushing briefly against each other. Kahoko felt a tingling sensation when their shoulders made contact, but that feeling was gone all too soon as he rotated his body slightly. She had no idea that Len felt the same thing, 10 times stronger. He mustered all of his willpower to finish what he was about to do.
Standing side by side, he leaned down towards her as though he was going to kiss her (which he was going to do.... but he gave up on that notion) but instead muttered into her ear, "I love you, Kahoko." Then, he slowly straightened and walked away.
Kahoko never looked back until she was sure that he was gone. She could still feel his warm breath brushing and tickling her earlobe, as he muttered those words she'd always dreamed of hearing, but never thought it would really happen. Now that it'd happen, she didn't know what to do. A few days ago, she would have probably responded differently, but the circumstances now made that inexcusable. She was going for a date with Ryotaro, her first date, and she can't just tell Ryotaro no as he appeared on her doorstep. She didn't have the heart to do so; she had to sort out her feelings.
She took out her cardkey from her purse and entered her room, letting the door swing back close by itself. She immediately dropped into one of the armchairs, staring out the window, thinking about everything and nothing. It was kind of like she went into a trance, until she didn't hear the continuous knocking on her door.
"Where is she?" he thought, having given up on knocking on her door. He'd been keeping it up for 2 whole minutes but she hadn't come to open the door. He couldn't even hear any movement in the room, so he was pretty sure she wasn't back yet.
"Good thing she's late..." he thought.
As Ryotaro exited the lift, he had the misfortune of meeting his rival, Len Tsukimori. He instantly knew what was going on. There was only one reason why Tsukimori would even be on this floor, and that reason is his girlfriend, Kahoko Hino. He narrowed his brows at the thought. What did he do to her?
Nothing. Even though he was Ryotaro's enemy, Tsukimori wouldn't do such things to anybody, let alone Kahoko. He knew that, unlike his ex-girlfriend's fanclub threatening to split up the both of them, Tsukimori at least had the honour not to do such despicable things. It was an even rivalry between them, and like an unspoken rule, they had both accepted that the decision will lie in Kahoko's hands.
But still.... he probably talked to her. "I wonder whether he knows about the change in our relationship?" he thought with a sneer. Looking at the way he stood, it was obvious he wasn't in the greatest of moods. In fact, despite his regal stance, he could tell that Tsukimori was trashed on the inside. It didn't take a genius to figure that out.
In fact, Tsukimori didn't even look at him as he entered the lift next to the one he had just exited from. It wasn't ignorance; Ryotaro was certain he didn't even notice him standing there.
Deeply troubled, he walked towards Kahoko's room.
He snapped back to his current situation. In the end he decided to call her and pick her up where she was instead. He had her number on speed dial. He heard a very familiar ringtone coming from inside her room.
"Did she leave her cellphone in her room?" he wondered. After a minute, he decided to disconnect the call. But just as his hand strayed to the disconnect button, he heard her urgent voice through the phone.
"Ryotaro! I'm sorry! I spaced out and I didn't hear the phone ringing till now! Have you called me a few times already?!"
"Kahoko, calm down. Hi. And to answer your question, no, so far I've only call you once, but I've knocked on your door too many times to count," Ryotaro answered amusedly.
"Oh my gosh I'm so sorry! Did you hurt your knuckled rapping on the door like that? I think the door is made out of some hard wood so you-"
"... Would you mind letting me in instead of letting me stand out here?" Ryotaro said, trying his hardest not to laugh. This was the reason why he liked her so, she was so cute all the time especially when she was frantic.
"Eeep!" she squeaked into the phone. "I'll be right there!" she told him before hanging up. He shook his head in amusement. He was so lucky to have her.
How could she have not hear him knocking on her door? She was supposed to have better hearing compared to normal people because of her musical knowledge, but she didn't even hear a single thing until she felt her cellphone vibrate near her hand! Rushing to the door, she first stopped by the full-length mirror to check her appearance before opening the door.
"Ryotaro, hi! I'm sorry about just now I spaced out and all so..." She was interrupted by a firm hand on her head.
"Hi, Kahoko. Ready for our date?" he asked with a grin.
"Y-yes!" she answered quickly, blushing furiously. He was acting so casually. She was the one that was behaving differently.
"Well, anyway.... here. For you," he said with a smile, extending his hand that had been behind his back all the while. In his hand was a bouquet of red roses, wrapped with pink and purple crepe paper and tied with a big gold ribbon with a small white teddy bear.
"Ryotaro! You shouldn't have! Thank you!" she exclaimed happily, accepting the bouquet. Her blush intensified.
"Can you wait a minute while I put his inside?" she asked, gesturing to the roses. He nodded and she immediately went to search for a flower pot. When she found one she carefully inserted the roses and watered them so that they stayed fresh.
"I'm done! We can go now!" she said, smiling, all her worries forgotten as she saw Ryotaro's face light up. He was probably as nervous and excited as she was. But of course, as the boyfriend, he initiated the first step by extending his hand towards her.
I am so sorry I really am! I only write when I feel like it and when I get an idea....
At the end of the chapter I kinda imagined Ryotaro acting childishly excited like it was his first date and all........
Poor Len.... is my story too predictable?