A story about
And a host.
.. Prologue ..
Fragile, handle with care. You fall in love, then you lose your head. For the last, 24 hours, I've been crying my heart out.
24 Hours - The Sounds
It all started with a book.
Yes, just a book; nothing special, nothing antique or priceless or personal – not even sentimental.
It was just a plain, boring standard-issue Ouran textbook. It was a chemistry book.
Yes, that's it. I was on my way back from the lab, on my way to English.
My name is Hoshiko Yuzumari, Ouran Academy, senior year.
Then, when all this started, I was only a middle school student, but nothing has really changed since them. My hair is still brown and thin and short. My eyes are still grey and watery. My dress is still uncomfortable and I still wear a ribbon on the side of my head; burgundy, like Mother's lipstick in the photograph of her wedding with Father. I still am told I look like Sister, and Sister is very beautiful. I am still one of the shortest girls I know, and just as clumsy as I was that hot April day.
I was in a hurry. Chemistry was…stressful. I'm not dumb; at least, I try not to be. I really try. Really try. But, it doesn't come so naturally, not like Sister. Sister is excellent at Chemistry and Math. I keep my head in the clouds. I like language; I like our foreign poetry club. I like words. They make more sense, but I don't like talking so much.
I like to listen the best.
But…what I really like…best of all, doesn't speak very much.
He doesn't ever look at me, his eyes always skim over my head, and though I'm sure it's not on purpose, sometimes I really do wish my problem wasn't so…well, tall.
I was on my way to Chemistry when I got my problem. I didn't really want it, but I wasn't paying any attention, as is evident by what occurred (I'm sure you all would just like to know, my apologies! I tend to get round-a-bout when I'm nervous…).
I knew Takashi. He was in my class; always had been, since kindergarten when he asked me for the "Yellow" in my box of crayons. Yellow to color Mitsukuni's hair as they stood next to each other on some grass.
In fifth year elementary he asked me for the page number in class because he wasn't paying attention. He was staring at the piece of something caught in Mitsukuni's yellow hair; a piece of gum wrapper or something that bounced every time Haninozuka-kun moved.
But never, had any boy ever done this. I was only walking to chemistry when my nose collided with the column, white and pale and all my books went flying everywhere. I had hit the column quite hard, I had been walking fast because I was thinking hard, and sometimes my legs get ahead of the rest of me.
I was thinking about Sister. Sister was leaving that week, and I would not see her for a very long while. Sister was getting married.
The tears had sprung up as soon as I had made contact, a terrible habit that started when I was little and screamed whenever Sister teased me, even with the softest touch. Like how sometimes you say 'ow!' when nothing's been done, but you're convinced you've been touched. A reflex.
I hadn't been hurt very badly, just a little scratch on my forehead really, but I still was crying as I stumbled backwards with a yelp, almost tripping over my own shoes.
"Careful." I heard the voice as my arm was snatched by something warm, a calloused hand holding me by the crook of my elbow.
"Ah!" I started, slowly staring up at my rescuer. I can remember clearly the palpitations of my heart, the flush of blood to my cheeks as my grey eyes collided with his own.
Morinozuka Takashi, holding my arm, seeing the horrible tears all over my face. My hair settled back into place and everything went with it, my feet anchoring to the ground, but still, for some reason, the tears just kept coming as I stared at him.
And when some other boy might have looked uncomfortable, or ran, or laughed, Takashi-kun…well…he just looked at me for the longest time as I stood there, and after what seemed a thousand years he let go of my elbow and bent down, and handed me my text book, a simple chemistry one. I tracked the movement the whole time, eyes following him as he moved like clockwork, pushing the book gently back into my dazed hands.
I was mesmerized. Never before had I felt this way; like my whole body was completely numb with electricity, like every time he moved a spark of pent up energy hit the air and crackled and fizzed. And he just stood there beside me, still half holding the book before letting it go, allowing the weight to settle into my fingers. He looked me right in the eyes, and it was so strange.
As if he was seeing all the way down, and understood like the others didn't. That I was trying, at that moment in time, very hard just to get by.
"You'll be alright."
His voice hung in the air as he smiled, although it barely counts, just the slightest twitch of his stoic muscles as he backed up and then turned, walking down the hall, the interaction completely over, hands shoved in his pockets, already forgetting what I'd hold and carry with me for the rest of my life.
The bells chimed in the clock tower and I felt the air leave my body with a shudder, tears still coursing in a steady stream down my cheeks. I could still hear his words.
"You'll be alright." His eyes as he'd stared at me.
And maybe, maybe Takashi-kun, you were just being kind, but I, still, to this day, think that you understood just a little Takashi-kun.
And all the times after that as well, all those times that meant so much to me, but you probably don't remember.
After all, I'm just a girl, and I've always had this problem, this problem that makes you think I must hate you or something.
But, this problem has also made me realize that I have to conquer it. Before graduation, Takashi-kun I will tell you what I've been desperately trying to tell you for almost my entire life. Ever since that day in middle school when you so kindly helped me, when you said those words to me that made me so happy…so glad, so hopeful.
Takashi-kun, this is a big problem, and you don't understand it, but I'm going to try because I may never see you again, and if that happened I won't be able to live with myself!
So Takashi-kun, be ready, because I'm about to ask for help, because there's no other way I can solve my problem and say what my heart wants!
This problem means I might fail miserably, but it also means I might succeed if I can get some help from this place, this place where you spend your time and talk to other girls so freely (if you actually talk. I wouldn't know, I'm afraid). This problem is full of uncertainty, but I'm going to make you understand.
I've wished upon ten thousand stars…even made a thousand paper cranes for this to work.
But for now, all I know is this:
This problem that has landed me in front of an unfamiliar host club, peering in through the door, completely and utterly terrified.
My name is Hoshiko Yuzumari, Ouran academy senior.
And whenever I see Takashi Morinozuka, I inexplicably and without failure, burst into hysterical crying.
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