Disclaimer: As always I own nothing but the original characters and the situations all characters find themselves in. Thanks for reading the chapter, hope you enjoy and let me know what you think.
Kyoko's mother stared at the blonde woman in shock, her mouth literally hanging open as she reeled from the insults the woman had just hurled at her so fiercely. She recognized the super model's name even though the woman wasn't nearly as famous in Japan as her husband was. And it was the thought that she was letting herself be pushed around by some bubble-brained twit who could only make a living by her looks that had Saena drawing up to her full height, her face set in disapproving lines.
"If I wanted someone's opinion about my looks you wouldn't be the one I'd ask."
Only Kyoko and Ren were close enough to hear Kuu's low, "Uh oh."
Juli's eyes narrowed threateningly. "Not even someone with my keen fashion sense ands style could help YOU." The fashion diva growled. "You're beyond help, you ugly hearted gremlin."
Saena crossed her arms in front of her, the ugly aura that began to swirl around her suggesting the real possibility of gremlin bloodline. "Well obviously such useless information is all there is in your head. And where do you get off calling my daughter your little girl? Has your brain become so full of silicone that you can't tell your child from mine?"
"She is so dead." Ren murmured under his breath, sharing a knowing look with his father. No one, absolutely no one, told Juli Hizuri she needed plastic surgery. Not if they wanted to live.
"Silicone? Silicone?" Eyes flashing blue fire, Juli took a threatening step forward so that she was right up in the other woman's face. "I'll have you know I'm one hundred percent natural, you ugly old matron. Unlike you I was blessed with a body men will actually look twice at. And as for Kyoko, she IS my little girl. My husband and son have adopted her into our family and any daughter of Kuu's is a daughter of mine. You had your chance to be her mother and you blew it, you heartless bitch. She's mine now and you aren't getting her back, EVER."
Her honorary father had said that his wife would embrace her as her own too, but Kyoko had always had some doubts about that. She'd always gotten along better with men than women. But she could see that Ren's mother was absolutely serious, scarily so. Her new mother was even like her in her ability to give off hate waves!
Kyoko couldn't have spoken even if she wanted to; the lump in her throat was too huge.
Glaring at the woman Saena knew that their fight was not going to end in her favor. Her stupid daughter had no intention of falling in line and even if she had the time to bend Kyoko to her will as per usual the people around her seemed determined to keep her for some reason. And getting into a fight with such famous people in public could only cause her and her new husband problems later. She knew when to cut her losses and Kyoko wasn't much to lose in the grand scheme of things. Her husband would not be pleased, but her having disowned her daughter should count for something. And it wasn't like anyone would ever cast the homely girl in anything big. That would play in their favor.
So she'd bow out with grace, Saena decided, before this particular confrontation ended up in a bigger cat fight. One where the fur would really fly.
"If you want her so much she's yours." Few people did disdainful lady of the manor the way Saena did. "It's not like my life has ever benefited from her existence. In fact, I'm sure you two will get along swimmingly. Two peas in a pod from the looks of it."
Juli sneered at the woman, not intimidated in the least. "You're lucky that you ended with that last part, lady. If you hadn't, I'd have shoved one of my stiletto heels so far up your tight ass people would think you were half unicorn."
Kyoko, Yashiro and Kuu had to snicker at the imagery, Ren just smiling wryly at his mother's way with words. Some things never changed apparently.
"Even without the accent, I bet people always know what country you're from. So vulgar, Americans." Sniffing, Saena looked over in the direction of her daughter one last time. "Enjoy your new family, Kyoko. From the looks of it, you deserve each other."
And spinning on her heels Saena marched towards the doors, completely unaware that Juli was giving her the finger behind her back.
Several others noticed though and many of them applauded. Loudly.
Kyoko sighed with a rueful smile as she watched her mother leave for the last time. "Saying I deserve you guys is probably the nicest thing she's ever said to me."
As soon as the woman was out the door Juli turned around, grinned, and than rushed over to yank her new daughter out of her husband's arms and into hers, hugging the stuffing out of the surprised girl. "I'm so happy to finally meet you! Kuu and Kuon have told me so much about you! You're every bit as perfect as they told me you were. I'm so happy, I always wanted a little girl of my very own! My baby boy is the light of my life of course, but he always hated it when I dressed him up like a girl."
Ren winced at the memories, and made a mental note to ask his father to hide those pictures before Kyoko came to visit them. She'd love them, knowing her, but he had too much masculine pride to let her see even half of them.
Kuu patted his son's shoulder in sympathy. He'd tried to stop Juli, he really had.
Kyoko tried to picture her fairy prince dressed up as a girl, thinking to herself that he would have probably been able to pull it off really well. Sneaking a peek at Ren over Juli's shoulder Kyoko grinned at the look in his eye. She was willing to bet there were pictures and she could wait to see them.
"I'm very happy to meet you too." Kyoko said softly as she turned her attention back to her new mother, returning the hug with shy enthusiasm. "I'm sorry for my moth- for her behavior." The woman who'd borne her was no longer her mother.
"Oh pish posh, sweetie. I'm in the modeling business. No one out bitches one of us. I'm used to it. And how she behaves is no reflection on you either. She'll regret what she is, mark my word. Someday she's going to pay big time. The only good thing that woman probably ever did was name you Kyoko. Now all the people I love most in the word have names that start with a K."
Kyoko had to laugh, because by a weird coincidence that was exactly the case. "And your name starts with a J because you come first in the scheme of things."
"Oh I really, really love you!" Utterly delighted with the girl Juli just had to give her another crushing hug.
"Easy, sweetie, you're stronger than you realize." Kuu reminded his wife, coming over to ruffle both their heads.
"I know I nearly passed out a time or two." Ren agreed as he draped an arm over his father's shoulder. "Really, Mom, easy on the hugging. Dad's right."
At the sound of her baby boy calling his parents mom and dad, in front of people once more, Juli burst into tears and grabbed her son to squish him in beside Kyoko so that she was hugging both her kids as much as possible.
Laughing Kuu joined in the unexpected group hug, grinning widely at finally having his whole family together and whole once more.
Meanwhile, all around the hugging family, word was being passed around from mouth to mouth that Ren Tsuruga had just referred to Juli and Kuu Hizuri as mom and dad. Which would logically make them his parents, they all surmised. Which meant, the crowd began to whisper, that Japan's number one male star was the only son of another number one Japanese star. And not only that, but the man who had wooed just about every woman alive with his performance in Dark Moon had done so while playing one of the roles his father was most famous for.
Immediately pictures were taken and those in the media began placing calls to their respective businesses with the shattering news.
Jumping up and down with excitement, Maria silently thanked all the otherworldly beings she'd contacted and asked help from. Kyoko had not only triumphed, but she'd gotten a new family in the process, the girl thought with a fist pumping cry of victory. And Ren looked so happy, Maria thought with a huge smile on her face, seeing that as the best twist to the whole thing. And Ren's happiness was her happiness, which meant that Maria was near to bursting with happiness.
Just as happy as his granddaughter, Lory had to give Ren serious points for calling in his parents. That Ren loved Kyoko enough to have done that made the president want to hold a year long celebration in their honor. Ren was like a son to him after all and Kyoko had become very important to him as he'd gotten to know her. Like Kuu, Lory couldn't be happier that the two had won each other's hearts.
Shoving his hands into his pockets, Hiroaki smiled one of his gentle smiles as his pretty face lit up with understanding. "So that's why he understood what I needed to hear most that time." The director said softly to himself. "He must have known exactly what I felt." And like him, Tsuruga had balked when first stepping into his father's shoes for Dark Moon, but then had gone on to create something that was uniquely his own. They had both stepped into their father's shoes and than they had proven to everyone that they could walk in their own shoes even better.
Shaking her head, Haruki had to admit that she'd never seen this coming. But being Hiroaki's friend for so long had taught her about the perils of having famous parents, even loving ones. She didn't blame Tsuruga for changing his name and trying to make his own way on his own merit. She admired him for it. And now Kyoko was going to end up a part of one of the most powerful families in the entertainment business. She could see what was between Tsuruga and Kyoko now; it was as plain as the nose on her face. And good for them, she thought with a smile. She wished them all the best.
Meanwhile, off in another direction, Kenae was so happy by the unexpected turn of events that she yanked Hio up against her, hugging the boy exuberantly as she stared at her best friend over Hio's head. "She's finally got her fantasy family." Smiling widely Kanae didn't even care that she was making a spectacle of herself.
Hio just blushed red as a tomato and enjoyed the hug, returning it shyly. It just made him doubly happy that things had turned out the way they had.
Seeing that there was no need for his continued presence Sho walked around the two huggers and headed for the door. Weaving his way in and out of the people the famous singer stopped when he was almost at the door, wanting one last look before he stepped out.
By sheer chance his eyes met Kyoko's, the two childhood friends sharing a look that communicated their bond and how much it had changed and weathered since they were children. They weren't children anymore, and things were changing in their lives every day.
Accepting those changes as necessary Sho raised a hand, grinning when she gave him a curt nod in reply.
It was a start, Sho thought as he stuck his hands into his pockets.
His gaze moving to her left, Sho's eyes met Tsuruga's this time, the two nodding their heads in acknowledgement of their new roles in Kyoko's life. They both understood where they stood now. Kyoko's past belonged to him, but her future would be Tsuruga's. It was the way it was supposed to be. And he was okay with that.
Heading out of the building Sho breathed in the fresh air with a sense of anticipation and contention he hadn't felt in a long time.
Today was a new day.
Two Years Later
Hands shaking as she stood under the protection of the silk tent Kyoko ordered herself to breath as she forced herself not to go search out a mirror for another quick look. She looked absolutely beautiful, she reminded herself. Absolutely perfect. Her hair and make up had been done to perfection by professionals, and the dress she wore was straight out of her most lavish fantasies. She looked like a princess in it, the tiara perched on her head the perfect, elegant touch.
"It's almost time." A smile on her lips, Chiori reached out to straighten one of the pearl drop earrings. "There, now you're perfect again."
"I'm so nervous. I don't know why I'm so nervous."
Rolling her eyes, Kanae came over and gave her friend a little hip check. "It's your wedding day, silly. Nerves are mandatory. "
"I know I was nervous as hell before mine." Kuu added as he joined the three girls, slipping his arm through his daughter's with a grin. "And as lovely as it is to look at you radiant ladies, the maniac wedding planner wants us all to get into position before she yanks out any more of her blonde hair in serious frustration."
Kyoko shared a knowing, ruefully amused look with her father. "Then I guess we better get in line before we give her any more ulcers."
Shaking her head at the unprofessional behavior the wedding planner had been exhibiting, Kanae thought not for the first time that she was very, very glad that she was never getting married. And if she did, she was so eloping, no matter what her best friend said.
In silent agreement the girls and Kuu headed over to the other end of the tent where the wedding planner was standing with Maria, fussing over the girl's hair. Maria was only tolerating it so that the woman would leave Kyoko alone. The sacrifices she made for her big sister, Maria thought as she imagined cursing the planner later. The wedding planner was nothing but trouble.
The poor wedding planner had thought that the wedding between superstars Ren Tsuruga and Kyoko would be the social event of the year. She'd come in with big, lavish plans that had promised to compete with any party Maria's grandfather had or would ever throw. But that had not been what Kyoko and Ren had wanted and the planner had yet to completely forgive them for it.
But it was her day and with the help of her mother Kyoko was sure she was going to get exactly what she wanted. She felt sorry for the poor planner though.
In short order the wedding planner had them in their proper order, constantly looking at her watch as she waited for the top of the hour. Then it was time and she sent the girls out one after another, Kanae hugging her best friend hard before walking down lastly as Kyoko's maid of honor.
Watching her best friend walk out with tears in her eyes, Kyoko looked up at her father, her eyes tearing up that much more when she saw that her father was tearing up as well. "Don't cry, Daddy. You'll make me cry too and than Jelly will kill us both for ruining her make up job."
"Sorry." Winking at her Kuu stood up a little straighter, ignoring the worried looks the planner was sending in their direction. "It's not every day a man's baby girl gets married, you know. A few tears are a must. It's good luck."
Smiling widely at him Kyoko turned her head when she heard the music waffling in from outside change. That was their cue. Taking her bouquet of Queen Rosa roses from the planner, Kyoko nodded her thanks and then turned to face her destiny.
Barely hearing the planner tell them to start out Kyoko simply let her father guide her out of the tent and into the bright summer sun. Walking on the cloth laid out for her Kyoko smiled as she took in the perfection of the gardens they had rented for the wedding. There were flowers everywhere with butterflies and birds and nature all around them. The flower draped chairs seated the guests who were closest to her and her groom, no paparazzi allowed. This was an intimate engagement and they had wanted only the people who mattered there to share in it.
Everyone who was important to her was there, Kyoko thought as she squeezed her father's arm excitedly. Her mother was standing at the very front, looking absolutely beautiful as she stood beside Kyoko's Okami san and Taisho. The three members of the Fuwa family were there, as were many of the LME staff and Bridge Rock. The director for her and Ren's soon to be released movie, 'Eternally Yours' was even there, despite the fact that he felt marriage was an antiquated ritual. Hio was there of course, as well as the other men who'd been on the now infamous talk show with Kyoko and Ren. A few former castmates and film crew workers were there too, but the wedding was still a small and intimate engagement.
Ren waited for her at the end of the aisle, her fairy prince, Kyoko thought with a romantic sigh. Standing at her fiancé's side as best man was Yashiro of course, Director Date and Lory rounding off the groomsmen. They all stood together, across from her bridesmaids who all looked so beautiful in their jewel colored gowns.
Everything was perfect.
And on that thought Kyoko mouthed 'I love you' to Ren as her father let go of her arm and set her hand in his son's.
'I love you too' Ren mouthed back, flashing his most loving of smiles.
And They Lived Happily Ever After